Wednesday, October 28, 2009

Happy Birthday to ME!!

Yesterday was my birthday. Now, I'm not the kind that likes a lot of attention on my birthday (but a little sure is good!). But I do want to take the time to brag on my husband. Even though he is suffering, and I mean suffering, from the flu, he still made every effort to make my birthday special. He gave me not one, but two of the sweetest cards I have ever received and he dragged his sick self down to B&N to buy me all three of the books that I wanted for my birthday, two of which did not even come out until the actual day of my birthday! Yep, he's pretty much the best.

  • Splendor is the last book in the Luxe Series, one of my guilty pleasures you can read about here.
  • American on Purpose is a memoir by Craig Ferguson, my favorite late night guy (although I am too lame to stay up that late and must DVR!).
  • The Pioneer Woman Cooks is the first cookbook by you guessed it, The Pioneer Woman. I read her blog and love her recipes! Check out her website here.
I will update more on these books as I have time to sit down and actually read/look through them! I also got some very nice gifts from my team teachers, but that will have to be saved for another post.

Friday, October 16, 2009

Confessions of an Ugly Stepsister

This is the second Gregory Maguire book I have read, the other being Wicked. This book is not as deep and dark as Wicked, and although it was mildly vulgar in parts, it was not nearly as vulgar as Wicked either.

As made obvious by the title, this book tells the story of Cinderella from the perspective of one of the Ugly Stepsisters. While I did enjoy this book, it was not exactly what I had hoped for. I guess I expected it to be more like the Disney version (silly, I know). The story lacks fairy godmothers and enchanted talking animals and spells that break at midnight. It is not so much fairy tale as real life that has been elevated to fairy tale status over the years. It tells the story of a woman and her two daughters (one painfully plain-looking and one who seems to be mentally handicapped) and how they flee England after the death of their husband and father and try to make a new life in Holland. All of the female characters are very strong and willing to do whatever it takes, even though they live in a culture where women are not truly valued and even repressed. I also liked the little twist at the end that I really did not see coming. 

Overall, a good read. I recommend it if you like fairy tales, especially ones where things are not always what they seem. I enjoyed it enough that I do plan on reading another of Maguire's books, but I'm not yet sure which...

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Meal Plan Monday - Hiatus

I know there are hundreds (okay, maybe just two or three) of you out there who log in to your GoogleReader each week just to read my Meal Plan Monday posts (or rather, you happen to see that it's there and skim past it). It is to you that I must apologize. I am going to take a hiatus from MPM posts for the time being. Yes, I will still be doing my best to plan, plan, plan, but I feel that some other things have recently become more important to me and require more of my time and effort. I know, I know, if you fail to plan, you plan to fail. Trust that I am still planning, just not publicly. I do hope to get back to MPM's soon, but until then, you will just have to get your fill reading everyone else's!

Friday, October 9, 2009

Dog Sitting

This week, two of our good friends, Brittany and Dale, are out of town. I was excited to dog sit for them because I love their boxer, Bella, and because they have a fenced in backyard. My dogs don't get the chance to just run free very often, but they love it when they do. They especially love it when they get to run free with a friend. For more of Bo and Allie's adventures with Bella, click here to see Puppy Paddle pics (whoa, say that three times!).

Sorry, Bo was refusing to look at the camera. Unlike these two attention hounds, he hates paparazzi.

Monday, October 5, 2009

Meal Plan Monday (or lack thereof)

Since I am on Fall Break and will be out of school all week (YAY!), I am not planning my meals. I do have a few recipes that I want to try, but I don't really want to commit to anything. Over breaks, I just like to cook what I want, when I want. Breaks are the only time I am able to do this since I am usually in no way crunched for time! So this week, who knows what we will be eating? If I get into any big cooking adventures, I will surely let everyone in blogworld know!

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Quidditch Through the Ages and Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them

You know me, anything Harry Potter and I am all about it. So when I saw this package of two books that complemented the series, I couldn't pass them up! And it helped that 20% of the retail sales price goes to ComicRelief, an organization that helps three groups of children: 1.) Young people with mental health problems 2.) Young people with alcohol problems and 3.) Young people exploited through prostitution, trafficking, and the Internet. I am so glad that JK Rowling did this.

The books themselves should be hilarious to any Potter fan. I found that I enjoyed Fantastic Beasts more than Quiddith simply because it belonged to Harry and had his and Ron's comments scattered throughout. Quiddith was a library book, so no comments there, just a list in the front detailing who had checked it out most recently. Both books include passages from Dumbledore, which are funny and sad, given what we know about Dumbledore's fate.

If students are Potter fans, they will enjoy these books. If not, some may enjoy Fantastic Beasts, but probably not Quidditch.