Friday, October 31, 2014

The Cephalopod Coffeehouse: October


The last Friday of the month is time for The Cephalopod Coffeehouse, a chance for bloggers to get together and discuss the best books they have read in the last month.  Hosted by The Armchair Squid it is a wonderful chance to gain new entries for your to be read list and of course make new friends.

This month I have read a few books I haven't gotten a chance to blog about yet but my favourite (and least favourite) among those has to be 'The Book Of Strange New Things' by Michel Faber.  This is a book I never would have picked up on my own but I won it from Read It Forward and I felt I ought to read it.


Usually if I don't LOVE something right away, I don't really like it either and it takes FOREVER to read it but I was drawn into this book and unable to put it down.  Even though I really didn't like the main character, Peter, I was dying to know what happened to him and the people around him (because it felt like something ought to happen).

The idea is that Peter, a reformed alcoholic turned minister, is sent as a missionary to a another planet, Oasis, leaving his beloved wife, Bea, behind.  Things go ever more wonderfully for him amongst the natives on Oasis while Bea sends him messages detailing one disaster after another back home on Earth.

My favourite thing about this book was how descriptive it was, plenty of detail to fuel the imagination.  I could easily visualize the airport where Peter and Bea are waiting before he leaves England or his first meeting with one of the Oasis natives.

My least favourite thing about this novel, well I can't really say because SPOILERS but I was not a happy camper by the end of the book.  I hate when that happens and unfortunately that's a thing that happens sometimes in Science Fiction and Fantasy, you are left at the end of the story either going WHAT THE %$#! or with a boatload of questions.

All in all though it was worth the read.  What have you read this month?




Thursday, October 30, 2014

Saturday, October 25, 2014

The Neverending Blanket

Sometimes I start projects and I feel like they are never, ever going to come to completion.  This blanket that I am making for my best friend is one of them.  I must have started it two years ago now and I picked the particular wave pattern that I did both because I thought it would look neat with the self striping yarn I am using and because it is supposed to work up quickly.

It seems to be a glitch on my part because patterns that are supposed to work up quickly almost never do, I don't know what it is.  I think perhaps it's because they are usually made of repetitive stitches that require little to no thought which bores the utter life out of me so I can only work on them for so long before I start just going slower and slower....

Fortunately it is finally nearing completion, which is nice because I have tons of other projects I would like to get underway.


Friday, October 24, 2014

Celebrate The Small Things: October 24, 2014


It's time again for the Celebrate the Small Things blog hop hosted by Scribblings of an Aspiring Author.  It's a chance to look back over the week and remember the things big and small that made it a little brighter.

A busy week this week on the work front so not a whole lot going on to celebrate except I suppose that I have a job?  Looking forward to tomorrow after work so I can curl up with a nice cup of tea and catch up on my letter writing. 

Also looking forward to the clocks falling back so that I have what will hopefully be an extra hour of sleep. 

What are you celebrating this week?





Thursday, October 23, 2014

Throwback Thursday: Childhood Halloween

Remember that bunny costume I was talking about on Tuesday?  Well last night I found a picture of it.


It was a lot less dorky looking in my memory...

Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Express Yourself: Childhood Halloween Costume


The Express Yourself Weekly Meme is hosted Bouquet Of Books and Entertaining Interests.  This week's topic is: What is a costume you wore for Halloween as a child?

Being born in 1981 I wore many awesome Halloween costumes as a kid, I vaguely remember the year of the carebear costume with the mask I could barely breathe out of.  Or the year we were in Montreal for Halloween to visit my Grandfather and my mom dress me up as a Hobo.

I think my favourite childhood Halloween costume though was the year I was a bunny, because bunnies are awesome.  Plus I really love face paint.

 




Saturday, October 18, 2014

Book Review: Saga Volume One

I had been on the hunt for the first volume of Saga for quite a bit of time but I was having a little bit of trouble locating it.  Everyone had Two and Three but One was nowhere to be found.  Mike added it to his handy dandy list of books that I was looking for and he managed to locate it in no time flat.  (I don't understand how that works but he does live in an area better populated by book and comic sellers than I do)


Saga had been briefly described to me by a friend which piqued my interest and I thought I had an idea of what I was getting myself in for but I really didn't.  I am not sure I even know where to begin on a review of this.


The art is simply stunning, it just blows my mind how it goes from eerie to downright creepy to breathtakingly beautiful.  There are a few panels I would love to see as prints to hang up on my walls.

Vaughan and Staples depict the world of Marko and Alana so vividly that I couldn't help but fall in love with it and get emotionally invested in their story.  Which of course made me want to kick myself when I got to the end of Volume One as I didn't have the next ones lined up and ready to read. I did however pick them up in Hamilton so I am excited to read them when I get a chance.

Have you read Saga?  Did you enjoy it?

Friday, October 17, 2014

Songs That Get Stuck In My Head

I have a song stuck in my head today so I thought I would share it with all of you in an attempt to get it out.



Do you remember the 1996 version of Romeo and Juliet with Claire Danes and Leonardo DiCaprio? I think that was the first time I heard this song.  I also think it was the only DiCaprio movie from that era I really liked and I have a very strong desire to watch it after listening to this song.

I wonder if it holds up after all this time?

Celebrate The Small Things: October 17, 2014


It's time again for the Celebrate the Small Things blog hop hosted by Scribblings of an Aspiring Author.  It's a chance to look back over the week and remember the things big and small that made it a little brighter.

This year my sister took over the hosting of Thanksgiving dinner (and did a fantastic job) so instead of making a huge meal I got to bake and I made my first ever pumpkin pie.  It turned out quite well if I do say so myself.


On Saturday night we took a tour of the Elgin and Winter Garden theatres in Toronto and learned all of the ghost stories.  It was pretty fantastic and the theatres are gorgeous.


Over the weekend to come the monkeys and I are planning on going to some sort of natural education thing that Cat brought home from school.  They teach the kids how to use a compass, recognize dangerous plants and churn butter.  The kind of things we learned in 4H back in the day.  They are pretty excited.

What are you celebrating this week?

Thursday, October 16, 2014

Throwback Thrusday: Hammer Town Comic Con 2013


This picture is from last year's Hammer Town Comic Con which is now called Hamilton Comic Con. It was a fantastic time being their first year running the convention and this was one of my favourite pictures of the day.

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Express Yourself: Halloween Plans


The Express Yourself Weekly Meme is hosted Bouquet Of Books and Entertaining Interests.  This week's topic is: Do you have any Halloween plans?

As I am sure you can probably imagine Halloween is usually a huge deal around our house, there is usually trick or treating and then the adults go out on the weekend.  This year though it falls on a Friday which throws everything out of whack.

There is still the planned trick or treating with the kiddos (princess and Ender-man respectively) but the usual going out with my sister and friends has been put off due to also having a family party to go to on Saturday.  I will still be dressing up though.  (I shall be a kitty for work and a TARDIS for trick or treating)

I do however have all sorts of fun activities to participate in with the International Geek Girls Pen Pal Club for their Halloween Party.  Which should be super fun!

What are you doing for Halloween?

Book Review: A Father For Christmas



I am not a big romance reader, I tend to find them to be very cookie cutter reads.  I found Rachelle Ayala's 'A Father for Christmas' to be anything but cookie cutter.  It was a quick, heartwarming read that broke up the heavier stuff that I usually read.


Single mother Kelly Kennedy can't afford lavish gifts for her four-year-old daughter, Bree. Homeless veteran Tyler Manning doesn't believe he deserves a Merry Christmas. 

When Bree asks Santa for a father and picks Tyler, both Tyler and Kelly vow to keep Bree from being hurt while fighting their feelings for each other.

Tyler struggles with frightening flashbacks that scare Kelly. Meanwhile, Kelly's criminal past threatens her chance for happiness.

Tyler and Kelly must believe in the power of love to give Bree her best Christmas ever.

I found Kelly and Tyler to be very real people which was refreshing for a romance novel and made for a much better read then most I have come across.  I really enjoyed their story and how it unfolded.

If you like romance novels that aren't too fluffy and trite then this is a good one to read.

I received one or more of the products mentioned above for free using Tomoson.com. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers.

Sunday, October 12, 2014

Book Review: Faith of the Fallen


Faith of the Fallen is when the series starts to pick up a little bit for me.  There were parts in Soul of the Fire that dragged a little bit for me and really there are parts here that drag a bit as well.  However, when the storyline starts splitting the main characters up the story gets a little more interesting.

It's my lack of focus rearing it's ugly head, I just feel better with a half a dozen storylines to follow all at the same time.  It makes the story seem more exciting.  Plus it feels that much more satisfying when they all come back together at the end and it pulls together. 

My favourite part of Faith of the Fallen is that is sets up perfectly for the absolute awesomeness that plays out over the next two novels. 

Saturday, October 11, 2014

Library Thing Review: Like A Suicide


I received this book free in a Library Thing Member Giveaway in exchange for an honest review.

The description of the book on Amazon is:

‘Wraith' is a serial killer. Not that he would call himself that. The best killer in the world. That he would agree with. He believes proper order can only be brought about in the world via chaos. Most of his kills make sense in that way. It just so happens that now someone has the nerve to bring chaos into his world by stealing money from him.
After tracking down the perpetrator, James and confronting him, Wraith concludes that he is either a genius or a stupid thief who just happened to mess with the wrong man. Either way, Wraith promises himself to enjoy this kill.
Wraith concludes James must die but decides to take his time and find out if this is the guy that might provide the challenging kill he has been looking for all along. He has to do all this with Detective Sweeney, the local superstar detective hot on his trail. As he gets ready to go for the kill Wraith can sense that something is wrong. It's just that this time, the kill feels ‘Like A Suicide’
.
This book is extremely graphic in more than a few spots, it made my stomach a little queasy in at least one place.  So it's definitely not for someone with a weak constitution, and I wouldn't suggest reading it while you are eating.

That being said it really did keep me guessing almost until the end, which was fabulous.  I was a little underwhelmed by the actual ending but everything leading up to it was great if a little gory. 

Friday, October 10, 2014

Celebrate the Small Things


It's time again for the Celebrate the Small Things blog hop hosted by Scribblings of an Aspiring Author.  It's a chance to look back over the week and remember the things big and small that made it a little brighter.

This week I am celebrating having some free time to work on Cat's Halloween costume.  I am also looking forward to having a nice Thanksgiving meal that I don't have to cook as this year my sister is in charge.  (Yay going and eating!)

I am also celebrating FINALLY feeling a little bit better after being so sick at the beginning of the week.  Yay!

Please check out what everyone else is celebrating this week and feel free to join in:



Thursday, October 9, 2014

Cat's Library Review: The Sandcastle Contest


Cat has finally ventured away from the Scooby Doo books and into something a little more interesting.  Robert Munsch has long been a favourite author in our house so it was much to my surprise that she brought home one that not only did we not own but we haven't read at all yet.

The Sandcastle Contest is a super fun, silly book and Cat and I both loved it.  My favourite part was the prize for the sandcastle contest.  How many times in your life can you win a bathtub full of ice cream? 

Cat's favourite part was, of course, the sand dog.  She would like things to work like that in real life so that we could have all the fun of a pet without all of the work.

All in all we give The Sandcastle Contest two thumbs up. 

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Throwback Thursday: Me

Flipping through my pictures today I came across this cute picture of Mike and I from towards the beginning of our relationship that Ace took.


Such a lovely memory of a fall outing. 

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

Library Thing Review: This Time Tomorrow


I received this book from a Library Things Member Giveaway in exchange for an honest review.

The book description from author Rupert Colley's website reads as follows:

Two brothers. One woman. A nation at war.

A compelling story of war, brotherly love, passion and betrayal during World War One.

Vast in scope and intimate in the portrayal of three lives swept along by circumstances, ‘This Time Tomorrow’ moves from the drawing rooms of Edwardian London to the trenches of the Western Front and to the uncertainty of post-war Britain.

When Guy Searight volunteers to fight with the British army in the early days of World War One, he leaves behind his girlfriend, Mary. While away fighting, Guy’s younger brother, Jack, seizes an opportunity to woo Mary for himself.

Forthright and self assured, Guy has always looked out for his confident but frail brother and blithely promises his fretting mother that he’ll look out for him when Jack’s turn comes to join up. But embittered by Jack’s betrayal, Guy vows that when Jack has to face the horrors of war for himself, he won’t be there to look after him.

When the brothers are reunited in the trenches of the Western Front, their thoughts are both with Mary. As Jack buckles under the strain of war, can Guy sustain his anger and allow his brother to suffer alone?

A shocking event, catastrophic in its intensity and barbaric in its conclusion, forces Guy to re-evaluate his relationship with his brother, with Mary and ultimately himself.

‘This Time Tomorrow’ is a tale of love, loss and longing.

It doesn't quite do it justice.  'This Time Tomorrow is a heartbreaking story that brings you to deep into the lives of the characters and lets you almost feel things through their eyes. 

The writing brings out so brilliantly the not so pleasant aspects of war, the feeling of missing your loved ones, and so many other things.  I haven't read very many books of this type that brought out such powerful emotions.

Express Yourself: Scariest Movie/Book


The Express Yourself Weekly Meme is hosted Bouquet Of Books and Entertaining Interests.  This week's topic is: what is the scariest movie/book you've watched/read?

Arachnophobia is hands down the scariest movie I have ever seen.  All those spiders, just thinking about it now makes me squirm.  I scene full of spiders in any movie will make me turn my head away in any film.  Most other things I can handle but spiders turn me into a big baby.  Well,  spider and centipedes.

The scariest book I have read at this point in my reading journey has probably been Pet Cemetery by Stephen King if we are going on pure creepy factor.  If we are going to go with giving one nightmares and not being able to get it out of your head I have to say A Clash of Kings by George R R Martin did it for me.

Please join us for this blog hop:



Monday, October 6, 2014

Cat's Library Review: Scooby Doo and the Opera Ogre


For her second library pick Cat picked another Scooby Doo book and it was not as big of a hit as the first one.  Scooby Doo! and the Opera Ogre has all the right things to be a great book.  Cat and I both lost interest very quickly though because the story started to drag very fast.  How may times can you have Shaggy and Scooby dress up in a costume and get chased exactly before it gets old hat?

The concept was cute but we are hoping the next book she brings home holds her interest better.

Friday, October 3, 2014

Celebrate The Small Things


It's time again for the Celebrate the Small Things blog hop hosted by Scribblings of an Aspiring Author.  It's a chance to look back over the week and remember the things big and small that made it a little brighter.

This week I am celebrating catching up on all my correspondence, it's such a small thing but it takes a huge weight off my shoulders.

I also have a full week of steady exercise behind me with little to no pain in my knee.  (yay!)  I was a little worried because last Saturday after work my knee had swollen up as bad as it was swelling back in February but after going through the exercises it is MUCH better.

We are heading out to Hamilton tomorrow for Hamilton Comic Con and I am debating entering the cosplay contest.  It would be my first contes and I am wearing my TARDIS cosplay.  Which is one of my favourites and the one I have put the most hours in on.  I will let you know how it goes.


Please check out what everyone else is celebrating this week:


Thursday, October 2, 2014

Throwback Thursday: Cat

Little Miss Diva has been extra demanding this week so I had a lot of fun looking back to pictures of a time before she was as up in your face.  It reminds me of how fast time goes by and that no matter how frustrating she is being I need to take a deep breath and snuggle her close because she will be all grown up before I know it.  



I wish I could reach back in time and squish those little toddler cheeks.

Wednesday, October 1, 2014

Express Yourself: Favourite Thing About Autumn


The Express Yourself Weekly Meme is hosted Bouquet Of Books and Entertaining Interests.  This week's topic is: name one thing you love about Autumn, even if you hate it.

I absolutely love Autumn, the cooler weather, the crunchy leaves under my boots.  The chance to wear my extensive collection of boots.

My favourite thing about Autumn though is the beautiful changes that take place in the world around us.  The leaves change colours in the trees and then fall to the ground blanketing it in crunchy wonderfulness.  All of which makes for such beautiful pictures.




Don't forget to check out what everyone else loves about Autumn.