Wednesday, July 27, 2011

Library Loot

 Library Loot is a weekly event co-hosted by Claire from The Captive Reader and Marg from The Adventures of an Intrepid Reader that encourages bloggers to share the books they’ve checked out from     the library. If you’d like to participate, just write up your post-feel free to steal the button-and link it using the Mr. Linky any time during the week. And of course check out what other participants are getting from their libraries!
I spotted Annie On My Mind on Tahleen's top 10 books teens should read list. Since I'm always on the lookout for good LGBT fiction I immediately added it to my library queue.
What did you get this week?

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Honey-Glazed Pork Chops

A friend of mine bought a lot pork chops. But her and her partner decided they weren't fond of pork after they ate a few of the chops. Nothing wrong with the pork. They just could eat 10 lbs of pork. I was reluctant to take it off their hands. Tai is picky about pork and won't eat it more than once a week. But after collecting pork recipes, I decided to try one out. Honey-Glazed Pork Chops:
We both really liked it. It was easy enough to make on a weeknight! I also made mashed potatoes using the Ore-Ida Steam and Mash potatoes. I bought them on a lark. I love mashed potatoes but hate prepping the potatoes. They were really good. I bought a couple more bags to have on hand. I also steamed some veggies on the side. Very quick meal to pull together.

*Yes, it's cold enough here to still make mashed potatoes. I don't think we're going to have a very warm summer this year.
*Ore-Ida didn't pay me anything to say nice things about their product. I honestly like the potatoes but they can pay if they like :)

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Library Loot

 Library Loot is a weekly event co-hosted by Claire from The Captive Reader and Marg from The Adventures of an Intrepid Reader that encourages bloggers to share the books they’ve checked out from     the library. If you’d like to participate, just write up your post-feel free to steal the button-and link it using the Mr. Linky any time during the week. And of course check out what other participants are getting from their libraries!
Just two this week. I've wanted to read The Particular Sadness of Lemon Cake for a while. Since it was sitting on the library shelf I decided to pick it up. Mrs Dalloway is for the Fill In The Gaps challenge. 
I read I, Robot and quite enjoyed it. See my review at the Fill In The Gaps blog
What did you get this week?

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

My Wedding M-Z

And now the thrilling conclusion!
See A-L here.

I really didn't want any traditional wedding music played at our wedding. Unfortunately there was a a mix up and the music I picked out for before the wedding got lost. So when people were arriving and waiting for the wedding to begin, the music was was very traditional. Oh well.
The groomsmen entered to this:

I can't get over how 90's that song is.
Tai and his mom entered to this:

Tifa's Theme from Final Fantasy.
And Marta, Ashley, Dad and I walked in to this:

I love this song. See I told you I wasn't traditional :)
And we left to this song:

Unwritten by Natasha Bedingfield. I just love the words to this song.
For our first dance, we used our song:

When we first started dating Tai emailed me this very video and said when I see this I think of you. I cried the first time I watched the video and heard the song. It's been our song ever since.

I love the smile on his face.

Old, New, Borrowed, and Blue:

The bracelet I bought from Etsy. The shoes were my first wedding purchase. I knew I wanted blue sparkly flip flops. And the clutch was my grandma's (dad's mom).

We went with ImageGarden Photography. I choose Andrew because he wasn't a wedding photographer but a photojournalist. I think he did a great job.

Question Popping:
I've never posted about our engagement story. It was Memorial Day 2007 and I was having a hard sleeping. At this point I had assumed that engagement was a few years away for us but Tai started asking me questions about what I thought our wedding would look like. We talked about the place, the people for hours. At the end, he says so we'll get married? And I said you didn't ask me to marry you. And he said sorry I can't get down on one knee (he has bad knees) but I still want to marry you. And I said if you are asking then I would say yes. We decided not to say anything until I had a ring but Mr Blabbermouth told all his friends the next day. Then three days later, Tai lost his job. He asked me if I still wanted to get married and I said of course. He loves to tell people how it was then he knew then I wasn't marrying him for his money :)

Our ceremony and reception were held at the same place, Tolt MacDonald Campground. We got married outside and had the reception indoors.
Tai gave a speech thanking everyone for coming. Ashley and Marta each spoke about our friendships. Brian and Carlo each spoke as well.

Trash The Dress:
I'd still love to do this.

Our wedding was at a campground. Tai camped the night before our wedding and we camped there afterwards with some of our guests.

Since this post is incredibly long already, I blogged about our vows (actually the entire ceremony) here. We wrote the entire ceremony using The Wedding Ceremony Planner. We used bits and pieces from the different ceremonies in the book.

Wedding Woes:
Something things went awry but that's expected. I already mentioned the pre-ceremony music wasn't what I wanted. We wound up with a head table even though I didn't want one. To be far, I gave Tai permission to move the tables as needed. And my dad was late. But he got there and walked me down the aisle. We just had to hold things up for a little bit.

Uh, no.

Young Kids:
We didn't have any flower girls or ring bearers. We did have some youngsters as guests though.

Are you still reading this? Damn that was long. Thanks for sticking around and reading this long wedding meme!
Happy 3rd anniversary to my wonderful hubby!

Monday, July 18, 2011

My Wedding A-L

I'm totally stealing this from Jules. Since our 3rd anniversary is this week I figured this would be a fun meme to do.
I recently posted about how Tai and I met. Go here to read that story.

I think we had about 60.

Ashley and Marta

We had 4 different cakes a our wedding. Fruit cake, Black Forest cake, Swiss Chocolate and Tiramisu. We bought them from Regent Bakery. There was just a few slices left at the end of the night.
I was a two dress bride. I bought this dress:
It's pale pink. I really thought I wanted to wear a pink dress. But then as the wedding got closer I realized  I wanted a ivory/white dress. So I bought a second dress:
 Here's a picture of the back. I loved the back.
We were engaged for 13 months. It was the perfect amount of time for us.

I carried white daisies and Marta and Ashley carried orange daisies. I like how the orange popped against the brown.

Carlo, Jeff, Brian and Jamie. All fantastic guys.

I didn't really take a honeymoon. We didn't have any vacation left after the wedding so I went to work the Tuesday after we got married. I always recommend to everyone to take time off after the wedding. You are going to need it.

We went with Weddingpaperdivas and got these:

Justice of The Peace:

We were married by our good friends, Herb and Christy. In fact this was the first decision we made after deciding to get married.

I still have my dress, my shoes, my bracelet, and headpiece. Sadly my earrings broke that night. I really liked those earrings.

Ladies Night:
All pictures and description of the debauchery can be found here.

Stay tuned for part 2 tomorrow!

Friday, July 15, 2011

Soulless by Gail Carringer

While talking to a friend at work, she mentioned she was reading Heartless. She asked if I had started the series yet and I told I wanted to but hadn't yet. She brought me the first three books in the series the next day. I love having such gracious friends.
Ok first off can I say how much I hate that cover. Why is she posed in such a ridiculous manner? Great book, terrible cover!
So Alexia's got no soul. She's a spinster. She's half-Italian. She's too dark complected. She's too smart. Enter Lord Maccon (swoon!), a dashing werewolf who she winds up at odds with. At the beginning I wasn't sure I would like Alexia. For all her book smarts, she seemed a little daft. But she quickly won me over. Despite being in the same time period as the Gardella Vampire Chronicles, the language and therefore the feeling of the book makes the book feel as if it was written in the later 1800's. I quickly became engrossed in Alexia's world and I loved how Carringer made everything flow. Yes, there are vampires and werewolves but this is no Twilight. Alexia's world is a little different than other fantasy books I've read, even the other steampunk books I've read. It's really a world of its own (just delightful really).
Highly recommended. Others who shared their thoughts on Soulless: Book Girl of Mur-y-Castell, Book Addict, Zoe Reads, and Book End Babes.

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Cravin' Carbs

I have been sick for the past 3 weeks. Seriously. First I hurt my back-muscle spasms-then I caught this hellacious head cold. It's starting to fade but I have no energy hence the craving carbs title. When I'm sick, I want bread, pasta, cookies. And thanks to pinterest, I can keep notes on all the yummy carbs I want.

I made these but I didn't wait to cook them. You know what? Still yummy.

I made these for our 4th of July potluck. I made 2 batches and took none home at the end of the night.

Aren't these the cutest things ever?

A coworker took an information poll at work. Brownies are always a good thing.
Are you on pinterest? Friend me! When you're sick do you crave carbs?

Wednesday, July 13, 2011

Library Loot

 Library Loot is a weekly event co-hosted by Claire from The Captive Reader and Marg from The Adventures of an Intrepid Reader that encourages bloggers to share the books they’ve checked out from     the library. If you’d like to participate, just write up your post-feel free to steal the button-and link it using the Mr. Linky any time during the week. And of course check out what other participants are getting from their libraries!
While dropping off some books at the library I decided to take a look at the shelves to see if anything jumped out at me. I confined my browsing to the "new and interesting" section near the exit. More than that I would have walked out with a truckload of books. 
Roses has been on my radar for sometime but Shoshanah's recentish review reminded me that I wanted to pick it. Plus I thought it might be a good break to all the zombie and vampire books I've been reading recently. Jane Eyre is on my TBR challenge list. 
What did you get this week?

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Deadline by Mira Grant

Wow, where to start. I was torn about Deadline. Pat of me didn't like it but I had trouble putting it down. Deadline definitely got under my skin.
Deadline is the second in the Newsflesh series. (Read my thoughts on the first book Feed, here.) One of the reasons I liked Feed so much was Georgia. I was looking forward to getting to Shaun, her brother, in Deadline. But due to a plot device, I wound up seeing Shaun through Georgia's eyes just like I did in the first book. That's the part I didn't like. I would have enjoyed getting to know Shaun without Georgia. But all the action (less zombies, more evil government peoples) and conspiracy theories made the book hard to put down. I had to know what happened next.
If you liked Feed you'll love Deadline. Even comes with it's own what the fuck ending! Others who shared their thoughts on Deadline: Devourer of Books, Vampifan's Word of The Undead, The Word Zombie, and Reading With Mo.

Monday, July 11, 2011

The Graveyard Book by Neil Gaiman

I have finally read a Neil Gaiman book! Yay. I can finally feel like a book blogger!
I picked The Graveyard Book up one day after checking the shelves at my local library. I'd heard good things about The Graveyard book so I decided to check it out. I was not disappointed.
The Graveyard Book is a collection of adventures about Nobody "Bod" Owens. When Bod was a baby his folks were killed and he came to live at the graveyard. All the residents of the graveyard (ghosts and other paranormal folks) decided to keep him and raise him. The book does have an overarching story but most of the chapters are about Bod's adventures exploring the graveyard. I think my favorite adventure is when Bod goes to school. It showed how Bod cared about others despite living apart from living people for so long. And the illustrations are fantastic. It's been a long time since I read a book with illustrations. These added to the story in the most wonderful way.
Overall, I found The Graveyard Book to be a delightful story. I'll be looking for more of Gaiman's work in the future. Others who shared their thoughts about The Graveyard Book: The Book Snob, The Betty and Boo Chronicles, Debbie's World of Books, Fluttering Butterflies, This Miss Loves To Read, and Lucybird's Book Blog.
This was my twentieth read for the YA Reading Challenge.

Friday, July 8, 2011

Mid Year Challenge Update

This is the first year I've done challenges (other than the Fill In The Gaps Challenge). I'll do a separate post on FITG since it's a multiple year challenge (and to give me more time to read more). I'll just talk about the challenges I'm doing for 2011 here.

War Through the Generations
I'm doing well on this one. I signed up to read 3-5 books and I've read 5. See what I've read here. I plan to read a few more plus participate in the readalong.
100+ Reading Challenge
As of today I've read 68 books. I'm on track to read more than 100! Yay!
Support Your Local Library Reading Challenge
I signed up for the Mega Size (51 books) and I've met that challenge already. Woo Hoo. Challenge complete!
YA Reading Challenge
Since I only read 12 YA books last year, I signed up for the mini challenge (only 12 books) but as of today I read 21 YA books. See what I've read here. I'll probably read more as the year goes on. There are some fantastic YA books out there. Challenge completed!
The original TBR Challenge
When I signed up I thought this would be the easiest challenge. Twelve books. Ha! But I'm so bad about reading books off a list. So far I've read 3 so far. I have 4 more of the books for the challenge sitting on my shelf waiting to be read. Sigh. I think I might have to be more diligent if I want to complete this one.

How are you doing on your challenges?

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Girl In Blue by Ann Rinaldi

I've been interested in reading about woman soldiers since I read The Girl Who Kicked The Hornet's Nest. This one was a little different than I thought it would be but good nonetheless.
Sarah lives with an abusive father. She longs to find a way to leave her home. Upon hearing that the Union army is seeking more soldiers she devises a plan. She will dress like a boy and join the army. Sarah's story was sad. I didn't expect to be so sad. Sarah's home life is miserable. So miserable that joining the army sounds like an escape. She endures so much and manages to keep pushing on even when things are at their worst.
I did enjoy the battle scenes more in this book than other Civil War books I've read. The descriptions were very realistic and since Sarah was in the middle of Bull Run, much more interesting. I enjoyed hearing about the spies who were trading information from the North to the South. I learned more about the Civil War!
Recommended. Others who shared their thoughts on Girl In Blue: Bunny Books Blog, The Bookworm and Summer Reading Journal.
This was my fifth read for the War Through The Generations Challenge.
 This the nineteenth book I read for the YA Reading Challenge.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Library Loot

 Library Loot is a weekly event co-hosted by Claire from The Captive Reader and Marg from The Adventures of an Intrepid Reader that encourages bloggers to share the books they’ve checked out from     the library. If you’d like to participate, just write up your post-feel free to steal the button-and link it using the Mr. Linky any time during the week. And of course check out what other participants are getting from their libraries!
Just two for me this week. I'm making good progress on my old loot but I have 2 sets of books loaned to me by friends (The Parasol Protectorate and Oishinbo). I hate keeping people's books too long so I think I'm going to have buckle down and read them. Although I am very excited about Deadline, the sequel to Feed. Food and Loathing is for the Original TBR challenge. I'm behind on my reading for that one! I need to do a challenge update post.
What did you get this week?

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

Spinach Mushroom Quiche

For some reason I bought whole wheat pie crusts. I couldn't see making a fruit pie out of them, so I decided a quiche would be perfect. Plus I needed an idea for breakfast. We were getting tired of french toast or eggs and pancakes. So I used this recipe as a base and added things I thought would be good.

Spinach Mushroom Quiche
(adapted from Real Simple)


1 9 inch whole wheat pie crust
1 tbs. oil (olive, canola, grapeseed etc)
1/2 medium onion chopped
Salt and Pepper
5 large eggs
3/4 cup milk
1/8 tsp cayenne pepper
1 bunch of spinach 
4 oz of white mushrooms chopped
1 1/4 cup of shredded cheese (I used a combo of cheddar cheeses)

Sauté the onion in the oil til soft. Add mushrooms and the spinach. Cook until the spinach is wilted and mushrooms are soft. Allow to cool.
In a large bowl combine the eggs, milk and cayenne. Add cooled spinach-mushroom mix. Stir together with cheese, salt and pepper. Pour mixture into pie crust.
Place quiche on a baking sheet to catch any drips. Cook at 375º for 35-40 minutes til knife inserted into center comes out clean. Serve with a salad or fresh fruit. 

Friday, July 1, 2011

June Book Tally

Broken Promises by Elizabeth Cobbs Hoffman
Rage by Jackie Morse Kessler
The Goddess Test by Aimee Carter
Time of  The Witches by Anna Myers
Wither by Lauren DeStefano
Practical Demonkeeping by Christopher Moore
No Humans Involved by Kelley Armstrong
Committed by Elizabeth Gilbert
Graveminder by Melissa Marr

Nine books this month. Pretty good. I think Graveminder was my favorite but Committed was a close second. Tai and I listened to Practical Demonkeeping on the drive to and from Portland. It kept me entertained and awake the whole time. I'm on track to read more 100 books this year. Yay!

The Stats:
Fill In The Gaps Challenge: YTD: 5 (None additional this month)
War Through The Generations:YTD: 4 (Broken Promises)
YA Reading Challenge: YTD: 18 (Rage, The Goddess Test, Time of The Witches, Wither)-COMPLETE
The Original TBR Challenge: YTD: 3 (none additional this month)
Support Your Local Library Challenge: YTD: 50
100+ Reading Challenge: YTD: 66