Wednesday, May 11, 2011

Reading list

I finally, finally finished Game of Thrones. And it was awesome! There are a lot of characters to keep track of along with lots of politics, geography and fighting to keep track of, but it takes a lot of unexpected twists that make it all worth it. I think the HBO series is doing a good job with it so far!

So here’s what I’ve been up to since I last updated you all on my reading list.

Sweet Valley Confidential: Ten Years Later: (Audiobook) This book was just terrible, but was still fun in a guilty pleasure kind of way. I loved the Sweet Valley High series when I was about 10 through 12, so it I was interested in finding out what the Wakefield twins were up to all these years later. But the writing is just so terrible! I really cringed or laughed at some sentences. I think there’s a reason why Francine Pascal was always billed as the creator and not writer of the series. Ugh!

Unfamiliar Fishes: (Audiobook) I picked up this book after seeing Sarah Vowell on Craig and I thought it was funny, interesting and all kinds of delightful. My mom happened to be working on her Hawaii scrapbook while I was listening to this one so I had lots of pictures to refer to! Vowell tells about the period of Hawaii’s unification up until American annexation. But it’s the funniest, snarky-est history lesson I’ve ever had. She has a lot of celebs reading the parts of notable/notorious characters, which made it even funnier.

Water for Elephants by Sara Gruen: I absolutely loved this book! I really loved all the bits of circus history (and postcards!) woven into the love story. Even the animals are great characters. And the ending is one of my favorites ever. Way better than the movie.

A Discovery of Witches by Deborah Harkness: (Audiobook) I started listening to this one for a second time. I think of it as a mash up between Outlander, Twilight and Harry Potter. It’s very academic and some parts are tedious, but I found myself making extra turns around the block so I could listen a bit longer. The story is about a witch (one who doesn’t like to use her magic) who discovers an ancient manuscript that holds lots of secrets and falls in love with a vampire along the way. And no one else in the book is happy about any of that. This is the first of a series, so I’m looking forward to the next one!

Witch and Wizard by James Patterson: I hated this book. I couldn’t wait for it to end. Trying too hard to be cool for the YA readers, but no.

Portrait of a Lady by Henry James: (Audiobook) After Middlemarch and Vanity Fair, I was looking for something similar. I liked this one, but didn’t love it as much as the others. I didn’t like the heroine – well I did up until she gets married – and it kind of went downhill from there for me. Isabel Archer starts out as independent and adventurous, but then she gets mixed up with the wrong people and makes horrible decisions.

Battle of the Labryinth/The Last Olympian: The last two books were a great ending to a great series. I couldn’t put them down. Plus, according to the map at the front of the Last Olympian, the Titan’s camp was right around where I live!

Solo: A Novel by Emily Barr: It’s hard to like a novel when you don’t like the main character, a famous British cello player. She admits she’s a bitch – and yeah she has a lot of issues – but I think it took too long to make her likeable. I don’t even remember how this book ends!

Next up:
I'm working on George R.R. Martin's next Fire & Ice Book - the Clash of Kings, as well as a book about wolves called Shiver. I downloaded a bunch of audiobooks to get through the next few weeks once I'm done re-listening to Discovery of Witches.

Really want to read: Tina Fey's Bossypants, Lies Chelsea Handler Told Me and Charlaine Harris's new Sookie book, Dead Reckoning.

Monday, May 09, 2011

Happy belated NSD!

I hope my scrapbooking friends had a fun NSD this year! I didn't scrap, but I did hit a few sales. On Saturday, I had a lot of running around to do before Mother's Day, then I went to the movies and then to a college newspaper reunion (and forgot my camera!). It was a crazy weekend!

But I wanted to check in to show I'm still alive and to show off that I actually finished one whole page today! I have just lost the bug and it sucks. I have so many ideas for pages and I keep buying kits, but I just can't find the time/energy/desire to get back to scrapping. I missed the crop this month because it was Derek's bday party and the next one falls on Taylor's first communion day. Seriously, my mom has been scrapping more than I have!

While I was checking out my lack of scrapping and blogging I noticed there were a bunch of pages I never shared here. So now it's going to look like I'm not so lazy after all!

Taylor and Rocky happened to be visiting on the same day and Taylor was talking about how they've been friends for along time. She is just too sweet with the pups!
Credits: Credits: Kim Jensen's Butterfly Fields papers and paper butterflies from Scrapdish;
Kitschy Digitals' Fresh Blooms flowers; Shawna Klingerman and Lauren Grier's Besties kit from Sweet Shoppe; Amy Wolff's Calico Cottage journal block and Cinnamon toasted frame (recolored) from Lily Pad

I think Penny's ears look so funny when they flip over! We call it the "Crazy Ear."
Credits: Rachel Young's With You from Lily Pad; Natali Braxton's Spring Alpha Beads; Lili's Us arrow from Lily Pad

Here are some scenes from Kylie's 5th birthday party. Credits: Libby Pritchett's Charles Edward Limburger (The name of this kit cracks me up!) and Janet Phillips' Too Many Photos 62 template from Sweet Shoppe

Kylie is a serious Bieber fan! My sister-in-law can get her to eat things by saying it's JB's favorite. Credits: Valorie Wibbens and Creations by Tina Marie's Stinkin Cute from Lily Pad, Shawna Clingerman's Dirt don't hurt alpha from Sweet Shoppe

And here's what I set out to show off. My nieces and nephew are just getting so big! Everything here is from the May 2011 BOYC at Lily Pad except for Shawna Clingerman's Sketchy Graph Alpha from Sweet Shoppe.