Monday, October 31, 2011

Spring Break 2012: Move it and Lose It Check In

Yeah, I just made that up.  I AM going on vacation for Spring Break in 2012 and I am working out so I don't scare the old men in Speedo's on the beach.

Week 1 Stats
86 ounces of water each day at least every single day

My exercise goal for the week was to get 1.5 miles or 30 minutes in whichever came first.  I started each day with a 5 minute warm up and ended with around a 3 minute cool down give or take 2 minutes.  My goal was also 2 days.. so my 3 exceeded my goal! ;) I do not have a treadmill at home and have to go use the treadmill at my parents' house.

27 minutes run/walk on the treadmill it was about 1.7 miles
I ran for 10 straight minutes! And then I mixed it up run/walk to get through the end.  I used the incline at various points while run/walking but no higher than 2.

27 minutes run/walk on the treadmill 1.7 miles
I ran for 7 straight minutes today and finished with a mix of run/walks and used the incline but no higher than 3.

27 minutes run/walk on the treadmill 1.7 miles
My legs were super tired today and I only ran for 6 straight minutes and did run/walk to get through the rest and used the incline but no more than 3.5.

We went on a little over a mile walking field trip with the kids so I am counting it as my workout haha.


I call this a successful first week. Next week I am aiming for 2 days of running as well and hoping for the bonus of 3.  I may also try a 30 minute shred at some point.  Eeek.


What are your current exercise goals?

Friday, October 28, 2011

The Scent of Rain and Lightning - Discussion 4

Happy Friday! Welcome back to the final discussion over The Scent of Rain and Lightning by Nancy Pickard! I've really enjoyed this book and I'm glad someone suggested it, or it wouldn't have made it to the top of my TBR pile for awhile!

I felt like the book ended with a lot of action, which I like, and only hurried itself through the part where Meryl is identified as the killer.  I found the part where Belle identified his bow tie thingie and then immediately opened the box to be quick without her at least revealing some doubts that she'd always had of him or something.  It just seemed to quick and clean.  But I had guessed that Testament Rocks would eventually give Jody a clue.  Funny, how she was always drawn there and that was where Laurie did die.  Kinda freaky.

1. Did the identity of the killer surprise you?

2. Do you think Laurie deserved the ending she got?

3. Do the Linders ever abuse the power they have in the community?

4. What was your overall impression of Chase's character? Did he evolve?

5. How does the story reveal the challenges of forgiveness?

6. Was Meryl essentially a good man, despite his affair with Laurie and his role in Hugh-Jays's death? Can a person hide his or her true character from his or her family so successfully for so many years?Do you think Belle always wondered, which was why she was so quick to open that box? And seriously, WHY THE HELL DID MERYL KEEP IT AROUND???

7. Do you think Laurie would have matured or would she have stayed the same?

Thanks for participating!!! Come back next month! ;)  If you'd like to guest post next month just let me know!

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Shutterfly Holiday Card Winners!!

The three winners for the free 25 Shutterfly Cards are..

Kelly (aka RedSox)
Lori Quinesberry

I will try to get a hold of you ladies but if you don't hear from me first shoot me an email and I can send you your code! Thanks for participating and enjoy your cards! I know I can't wait to order mine!

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

5 month letter

Dear baby girl,

 5 months wow.  I can’t believe it has been 5 months (and a day by the time this posts!) since you landed squirming and crying on my chest.  5 months since we locked eyes and became a team.  5 months of breastfeeding, which warms my heart that we’ve made it so long, and it makes the heartache and annoyance of pumping worth it.  You love breastfeeding.  You completely relax and let go when you are snuggled up close to me.  I have to admit, I love it too.  I love that you get excited to see me, that you NEED me, and that I can calm you down so easily.  It makes the other trials of motherhood worth it to know I can be your number one.

In the last month, your sleep has been a mystery to me, and well let’s be honest, it has been a mystery since day 1.  You were doing well with going down between 7 and 8 and waking around 3ish and then 5 or 6ish and anywhere between 7 and 9 for the day.  Now you seem to be going down close to 7 and waking around the time we go to bed.  Usually, right when I fall asleep I hear you calling to me.  Then you’ve been good til about 4 am or so.  Then you are up for the day around 7:15 or 7:45.

 HOWEVER, you’ve started scooting like a mad woman and that wakes you up an awful lot because you bang your dang head into your crib.  Your dad and I restart you at the starting line (one end of the crib) and you always seem to finish at the finish line far too soon for my sleep habits! I try to move you back whenever I walk by because I would really like to sleep a full night.  Soon.  Please.

 You love to stand and play in your bounce about.  And you love to shove anything into your mouth.  Pacifiers, your dinosaur from The Wooden Quail, the poor butterfly on your bounce about, your fingers, other people’s fingers.  If it gets close, it goes into your mouth. 

dont mind the fact that her life jacket was on wrong.. whoops

 You have been going strong on boobie milk for 5 months now.  I think you are about ready to start solids and we may try that this weekend.  Eeek.  I’m so excited and so nervous.  You are growing up.

 You also like to roll around like a fool and hold your head up and look all around.  You are kind of nosy to put it mildly.  This makes napping a very rare occurrence.  I promise you they are good.

 You took your first trip to the pumpkin farm and your first boat ride. You’ve found your toes and your voice. 

 Your sweet loud high pitched voice.  I hope in the future you will use your voice just as loudly as you do now.  Don’t let anyone give you crap baby girl, you are strong, beautiful, smart and one heck of a hell raiser.  You are my daughter.



Tuesday, October 25, 2011

A Day in the Life...

I am starting a new weekly feature called "A Day in the Life..."  I not so secretly like knowing what other people do with their day.  It sometimes motivates me to be less lazy or assures me that my level of laziness is normal.  Validation and all that jazz.  I'm starting out with myself because I'm just an attention whore like that and just know that you want to know what I do with myself all day long.  Wait no more.

7:48 – Isla wakes me up.  Yay we slept past 7:15, I feel much better already.
this is her.. mom wtf mate.. it's toooo early for photos!

I feed Isla, change her diaper, get her situated on her play mat with toys and I make myself coffee and oatmeal.  She ‘talks’ to me while I eat and then I check my email while she is still entertained.
MOM.. stilll tooo early for photos...

 8:37 We are DONE with the play mat.  We talk/yell at each other for a few minutes and I transfer her to her excersaucer thingie and turn on Today.  Ewww Martha Stewart is on and I am not a fan.
this is verrrrrrrry interesting..

While she plays I talk with her and catch up on some interneting.

8:59  There are dangerous sounds coming from the drawers of the wee one.  Better wait out the 9 am dressing for a few minutes while the rumblings subside.  Ironically, she gets very happy and talkative at this moment haha.

9:06 It is time to face the diaper and get dressed.  Hold me.  The rumbles lasted a long time.

9:17 Isla is dressed and adorable in one of her 2 sets of Halloween Baby Legs.  Why I thought she needed twi for this holiday is beyond me.  But she sure does look cute!  Now she is playing in her bumbo with toys while I finish my coffee.

she was not impressed with me...

9:24 Isla eats again.

9:36 Baby girl is tired and we attempt to put her down for a nap.  Screaming ensues.  Pacifiers fly out of crib.  I try to get dressed for work.

9:53 A location change to the swing and Isla is asleep.  I’m dressed and make-uped for work.  Only need to brush teeth.  My hair is super easy because I work with preschoolers who share head lice.  So a bun and lots of hair spray is my easy hair-do every Monday-Thursday.

dont mind all the freckles/moles and pasty white..

9:55- 10:10 I get my ham, cheese, tomato, mayo and Dijon sandwich made, Kashi crackers and grapes counted out and ready and a granola bar.  This will be my lunch and snacks before, during and after school.  Teaching afternoon preschool kind of screws up my lunch time.  I get Isla’s bottle ready for daycare and pour my first bottle of water since my husband and I are doing a water challenge and if we don’t meet our daily goal we throw a quarter in the spring break fun money jar.

 that was a most delicious sandwich.. never did eat the granola bar..

10:10 – 10:30  I pump, take fenugreek and watch Today.

After pumping I eat my sandwich, finish putting everything into our bags for work/daycare and get meat out for the chili I am making tomorrow.  Tonight’s dinner is leftover salsa/corn/black bean pork tacos turned into nachos so there is no dinner prep for this morning.   I drink water and relax. 16 ounces down!

11:00 – Wake up Isla, feed her take her to daycare. 16.9 ounces down in the car!

12:00 – Get to work, prep the room and the kids arrive around 12:30.  Head down to lunch and eat my crackers and grapes.  When we get back to the room I finish the Brigance testing, run a small group, make copies for when we review letters tomorrow, run calendar and weather.  It’s raining so we stay inside for recess.  After the kids leave I unhook our old computer, hook up the new one and head out to pick up Isla. 38 ounces down at work!

4:25 Isla and I are headed home.  She passes out and sleeps in her carseat for a half hour while I catch up on email and prep our dinner.

5:15 Isla is up and hungry.  I feed her, we play for awhile and then I put the nachos in the oven and I eat dinner. 16 ounces with dinner!

6:20 My husband comes home.  He eats, we hang with Isla, she eats two more times and is in bed by 7:15, and has to be moved to the swing before she whines herself to sleep around 7:30.  Somebody give me back my happy baby.  Teething baby is no fun.

 7:15 I catch up emails, blogs, facebook, twitter and write a post.  My husband watches Man vs Food which turns into a bad decision of mozzarella sticks and I sip on another 16 ounces of water.

 8:48 Hop in the shower.

 9:00 Criminal Minds!

10:00 Pump

10:30 Isla wakes up so I feed her after my husband can’t calm her.

 10:48 Lights out..Goodnight.

So, what did recording my day teach me? I spend a lot of time on the Internet. (duhh already knew that, now you do too!)  Also, drinking lots of water is easy when you spread it out alllll day.  And I weirdly woke up at 748 and went to bed at 1048.  Interesting. 

Next Tuesday, Amber, will be sharing a day in her life with us! If you would like to participate you can shoot me an email at pinkflipflops44 at gmail dot com and we can add you to the line up! I hope you are all as excited about this as I am!

Monday, October 24, 2011

November Group Read...

The Postmistress by Sarah Blake will be our group read for November!

Description: Filled with stunning parallels to today's world, The Postmistress is a sweeping novel about the loss of innocence of two extraordinary women-and of two countries torn apart by war.

On the eve of the United States's entrance into World War II in 1940, Iris James, the postmistress of Franklin, a small town on Cape Cod, does the unthinkable: She doesn't deliver a letter. In London, American radio gal Frankie Bard is working with Edward R. Murrow, reporting on the Blitz. One night in a bomb shelter, she meets a doctor from Cape Cod with a letter in his pocket, a letter Frankie vows to deliver when she returns from Germany and France, where she is to record the stories of war refugees desperately trying to escape.

The residents of Franklin think the war can't touch them- but as Frankie's radio broadcasts air, some know that the war is indeed coming. And when Frankie arrives at their doorstep, the two stories collide in a way no one could have foreseen. The Postmistress is an unforgettable tale of the secrets we must bear, or bury. It is about what happens to love during wartime, when those we cherish leave. And how every story-of love or war-is about looking left when we should have been looking right.

I'm excited to read this! I do have the large print edition so I broke this down by chapters and I hope I did a decent job.

Discussion 1 (Chapters 1-5) - November 4th
Discussion 2 (Chapters 6-15) - November 11th
Discussion 3 (Chapters 16 -21) - November 18th
Discussion 4 (Chapters 22-28) - November 25th

If you would like to guest post one of the weeks, let me know.  Also, respond in the comments if you plan to join! Here's to November!

Friday, October 21, 2011

Discussion 3 - The Scent of Rain and Lightning

Hey all! Welcome back to the third discussion of The Scent of Rain and Lightning! Any and all are welcome to throw in an opinion or two!

I flew through this section.  I felt so bad for Red.  He obviously was falling for Jody and she was having none of it.   They definitely had different views on how their relationship was going. ;)  I also felt bad for Collin.  He must have been so conflicted, knowing that getting his dad out of prison was the RIGHT thing to do, however bad a decision it was for everybody around them.  I don't know if I could have been as nice as Collin and worked to get such an evil man out of prison.
An excerpt from the Random House interview with the author..

RHRC: You've woven two compelling stories into The Scent of Rain and Lightning. Which came to you first, the backstory or the presentday story? Did you find one easier to write than the other?

NP: I always find the backstories easier to write than the present-day stories. It's almost as if they already exist somewhere in time and space, and all I have to do is write them down; where with the present-day stories, I'm never sure what's going to happen next. This was true with Scent, it was true with Virgin, and it was true in my Marie Lightfoot series, in which my heroine, a true crime writer, was giving us chapters from her books about certain crimes and I was writing what was happening in her life currently. That's really where and when I started writing novels in this way, and I love doing it, though it's still a big writing challenge for me.

1. What do you think of everyone thinking Billy deserved prison even though they didnt think he killed Hugh-Jay?

2. How do you think Collin's life would have been different if Billy hadn't gone to prison?

3. Is it believable how quickly Jody starts accepting everyone's opinion of Billy's innocence?

4. Where do you see Jody's relationship with Red going? What do you think of Collin's confession to Jody?

5. What was the purpose of killing Val?

Come back next Friday for the last discussion through the end of the book!!! ;) Thanks for participating! Vote for November's book in the sidebar!

Thursday, October 20, 2011

CinderHazel: The Cinderella of Halloween

Everybody knows about Cinderella, but do you know about Cinderhazel? This is a 'funny' take on Cinderella in a Halloween theme.  It's aimed at Kindergarten - 2nd grade but I would make sure that whomever you are reading this to,is pretty well versed in the regular old tale of Cinderella.  And also understands irony, and other weird jokes.

Basically, Cinderhazel likes to be dirty, really dirty. Why? Who knows, it's never explained. She has two evil stepsisters Hermione and Hildy and an evil step-mother.  There's a ball for Prince Alarming to find a witchy bride and he also likes to be dirty, apparently.  There is a witchy godmother and a flying vacuum.  Yeah.  It's interesting.  And Halloween is really an after thought.

This is really not my favorite Halloween book but I'm sure it would appeal to some kids. It does have very clever word play and for a smarter bunch they could really be tickled by it. 

Will I be reading it to my preschoolers? No.  It's over their heads and they talk about putting spells on people and I don't think putting spells on people would be a hit with the preschool parent crowd.

Compare and contrast Cinderella with Cinderhazel.  You could use a Venn Diagram.
Have child pick a different familiar fairy tale and write their own new version.  Sleeping Ugly anyone?
Have child make masks of characters in the book and put on a play.

Don't forget to enter my Shutterfly giveaway! 3 lucky winners will get 25 free cards! Also, the Nov. Group read poll is up in the sidebar!

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Send Your Holiday Love With Shutterfly!!

Last year I shared with you how I got 50 free holiday cards from Shutterfly and had never used them before.  This year, I am back to tell you, I've used Shutterfly multiple times in the last year, am EXTREMELY happy with them and this year, I GET TO GIVE AWAY HOLIDAY CARDS to 3 lucky people, as well as receiving free holiday cards myself. ;) Excited? I AM!!

In the last year, I've made my mom two photobooks using Shutterfly, my husband has made a photobook of our daughter, I made our annual family calendar using their SUPER easy set-up, made my mother-in-law a desk top calendar, ordered prints of our gorgeous girl, drooled over baby announcements and first birthday invites. 

I can NOT say enough good things about their photobook and calendar set-ups.  They print nice and bright and what you see is what you get.  So easy to use and they have lots of options.  I had used Walgreens for 3 years of calendars and they always printed darker and didn't have as many features as Shutterfly.  I personally, never ordered a photobook from Walgreens but have been gifted them and they print so dark and are just not a good product.

My ONLY complaint ever with shutterfly was the very first time I made my first calendar it froze up and lost everything.  However, using their customer service and twitter I was able to get free shipping and 1 free calendar out of the deal which was worth the hassle.

And like I mentioned last year.  I am super pumped about sharing photos of my darling gal on my Christmas cards.  My only problem? Trying to decide WHAT photo/s and WHAT card to pick!

Here is what I'm currently trying to decide on...

Which one of these do you think I should pick? Do you have another suggestion?

Are you a blogger? Want a chance at 25 free cards this holiday season? Register here:

And... if you would like to enter to win 25 free cards from Shutterfly just leave a comment! If you'd like an extra entry.. you can tweet about it and leave me a comment saying you tweeted. You can tweet about it once a day and earn another entry each time you tweet, just leave me a comment so I know! I will use to pick three winners! I will leave this open for entries until next Wednesday the 26th!

FTC Disclosure: I'm receiving free cards for this blog, but would be using Shutterfly anyway.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

10 Trick-or-Treaters: A Halloween Counting Book

Who doesn't like a cute counting book for specific holidays? 10 Trick-or-Treaters is a colorful, fun, quick read that counts down from 10 with silly reasons for the Trick-or-Treaters to slowly trickle from the 10 down to 0.  It would be best for ages 3-6 and there are many oppurtunites to stop and ask questions, counting practice and lots of giggles as spiders and toads interrupt the trick-or-treating fun!

Halloween Counting Ideas
For those that can count to 20 - Here's a fill in the blank worksheet
One-to-one practice and counting - Here's a cut and paste
Connect the dots (1-22) - Worksheet here

And of course you can always compare and contrast Halloween candy/treats, taste-test and graph favorites!

Monday, October 17, 2011

Clifford's Halloween

Emily Elizabeth's favorite holiday is Halloween! Last year she dressed up as pirate and Clifford was a ghost.  This year she is going to be a fairy princess but Clifford is still undecided. 

This is a cute quick read that preschool through first grade would enjoy.  It briefly touches over how Clifford celebrates other holidays and how last year's Halloween went.  As most Clifford books go, the enjoyment comes out of the pictures.  This one does not disappoint with amusing pictures of Clifford scaring people because of his largeness and a dunking for apples mishap.  Whenever I've read it, I always get giggles from the kids.  Clifford is always a favorite.

Potential ideas to go along with the book?
 Easy - Have children color in this picture of Clifford with the Halloween costume they think he should have.
Medium Ability - Have children write a sentence and draw picture of what Clifford should be for Halloween. 
A little harder - Also read Clifford's First Halloween and compare the two stories. How are they alike? How are they different? How does Clifford's size affect his choices? Practice story-retelling.

What's your favorite Clifford book?
(The November Group Read Poll will be put up on the side bar today!)

Friday, October 14, 2011

Discussion 2 - The Scent of Rain and Lightning

Oh my word.  The end of this section had my heart melting at how Chase calmed his niece and rid of her fear of storms.  It almost took away the thought of him flirting inappropriately with his brother's wife. 

I feel like I am too cynical for this book.  I keep wanting someone to say WHERE THE HELL IS LAURIE? DID SHE KILL HUGH-JAY? Did she run away? Cuz, just accepting that Billy killed her? Come on people, get interesting.

I will say that it hooked me and has me interested.  Except for when they start mentioning the landscape, but I think I've established before, I don't do descriptions.  Just tell me what's going on and give me dialogue!

1.  Do you like the scent of rain?

2. Who do you think killed Hugh-Jay based on the clues so far?

3.  If you were one of the Linder children, how would you feel about the way the parent's seem to treat their children?

4. What do you think of the relationships the siblings have in the Linder family?

5. What is your impression of Belle?

Thanks for participating! Come back next Friday to discuss chapters 21-32!

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Flat Out Love

Flat Out Love by Jessica Park is a modern quirky love story.  Julie Seagle moves to Boston for college and on her first day learns that the big city isn't always kind.  She and her mother were duped by a craigslist ad and her apartment that they put a deposit on, and first and last month's rent is non-existent. Thankfully, Julie has a sense of humor about the deal and her mother calls in a favor to her old college roommate, Erin Watkins and Erin and her family invite Julie to stay with them.

The Watkins house is a bit different than Julie's home.  Especially since a cardboard cut out joins them for dinner and not one eye is raised.  Thirteen-year-old Celeste apparently has issues with her brother Finn being away and to cope, has made herself a Flat Finn.  Matt, Celeste's brother, is an extremely smart math dork who is as charming as he is annoying.  Roger, the dad, is a bit absent and out there, but a really kind-hearted father figure when he's around.  Erin, the mom, is emotionally distanced and a little in her own world.

Julie settles in with the Watkins and falls in love with them all. Of course, she must fix all of their problems and starts communication with Finn, to learn the ins and outs of his family and to try to get Celeste okay with him being gone.

Of course, there is drama, and of course nothing is as it seems.  However, it is as it all seems if you are paying attention to the painfully obvious clues.  I figured out what the big secret in the family was fairly early on.  It was an okay book but sometimes, I had to shake my head that a real person wouldn't be THAT dumb and oblivious.  Then at the end I had such HIGH hopes that a book wouldn't end with all the worlds problems solved and then of course we had to add in the last chapter and fix all the world's problems.  But besides that, it was a quick easy read and those that enjoy YA would probably really enjoy this book as well!

The banter between Matt, Celeste and Julie is great and overall, all the character parts are well developed and executed well.  My only issues are with believability.

I received this book from Crazy Book Tours.  All thoughts and feelings are mine and mine alone!
Check out what other people thought of the book here.

Author & Book Information:

Jessica Park is the author of FLAT-OUT LOVE, the young adult novel RELATIVELY FAMOUS, five Gourmet Girl mysteries (written as Jessica Conant-Park) and the e-shorts FACEBOOKING RICK SPRINGFIELD and WHAT THE KID SAYS (Parts 1 & 2). She grew up in the Boston area and then went to Macalester College in frigid St. Paul, Minnesota. During her freshman year, there was a blizzard on Halloween, and she decided that she was not cut out for such torture. So she moved back to the east coast where, she'd forgotten, it still snows. Oops. She now lives in New Hampshire with her husband, son, bananas dog named Fritzy, and two selfish cats. When not writing, she is probably on Facebook , pining over 80s rock stars, or engaging in "Glee" activities. Or some combination of the three. Probably with a coffee in hand.

Jessica loves to hear from readers and does her best to get back to everyone who writes her! You can e-mail her HERE. Tell her about your ex-boyfriend who was a font nerd. Or send pictures of awesome Flat People on adventures. (You get bonus points for this. Possibly some sort of award, too.) Stories of online romance. Apartment rental disasters. Skydiving experiences... Whatever you want.
And like any normal person, she has an online addiction, so you can find her on FACEBOOK, GOODREADS, TWITTER, and blogging at What the Kid Says about her kooky conversations with her son. Her young adult book, RELATIVELY FAMOUS, has its own website (greedy book!), so stop by for more info.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

November Group Read Suggestions!

Holy cow! How are we already into picking November's Group Read????? This year has flown by.  We've read some great books this year and can't wait to see what we end the year with.  I've really enjoyed the last few books.  Let's keep up the good book trend!

Here is what we've already read...

The Scent of Rain and Lightning
Still Missing
The Sandalwood Tree
Major Pettigrew's Last Stand
Something Borrowed
The Blue Orchard
Sammy's Hill
In the Woods
Shanghai Girls
The Weight of Water
Water for Elephants
The Color Purple
The One That I Want
The Secret Garden
House Rules
American Wife
Firefly Lane
The Reader
The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo
The Awakening
Pride & Prejudice
I See You Everywhere

Leave your suggestion in the comments! On Monday, the 17th I will start up the poll! I was happy to see some new faces this month, hopefully you all stick around with us this coming month!

Monday, October 10, 2011

Things I Never Needed to See on the Internet But Did Anyway...

1. A naked child (including a penis) on facebook.  Seriously??? Would you like me to share a naked photo of you on facebook? Oh no.. well why did you share your child's naked photo?

2. Mucus plug.  Seriously, why?

3.  Poop in a toilet bowl.  REALLY??? WHY DID YOU photograph that???

4. Someones vomit.  I guess I could have made this list a heck of a lot shorter by just writing RIDICULOUS BODILY FUNCTIONS one should keep in the bathroom!

5. Someones narsty hairy back.  It's bad enough in person, why scare us all on the Internet? I sure as heck won't be sharing my hairy neglected bikini line or my lovely stretch marks.  YOU'RE WELCOME.  I'd appreciate the same courtesy.

6. Used tampons.  WTF? (you probably wonder what I do on the Internet at this point, but I promise you I never had to google to find these things.. they appeared in my every day Internet usage!)

7. Hair in shower drains.  THIS one is almost worse than the vomit and mucus plug.  Hair on on someones head gives me the jeebies.. and makes me want to upchuck.. WTF.  The words are enough.  no visuals please.

8.  Cup of urine.  While, peed on pregnancy tests are not my style, I will say okay, sure share away.  BUT YOU DO NOT NEED TO SHARE THE CUP YOU PEED IN!!! Seriously, you can just tell me you're pregnant, I don't need to see the stick.

9. Children in U of M clothes.  Poor children.  Somebody buy them some scarlet and gray!

10. That horrid picture of that one terrorist in all his hairy chest glory.  EWWWWW.

What have you seen on the Internet that made you stop and go whaaaaat?

And if you recognize something on this list that you've done the Internet? I hope you are horrified and a little insulted.  Cuz seriously? EWWWWWWWWWWWW.

Friday, October 7, 2011

The Scent of Rain and Lightning - Discussion 1

Happy Friday!!!! Welcome to any newbies and any oldies to the Friday book talk!

I will be honest, when I started out reading the first chapter I was like oooooh man, this is a lot of wordy descriptions of people and I am going to shoot myself. Then it picked up.  I flew through chapters 2-10.

I get the impression that if Annabelle and Hugh were my parents or in my town I'd find them presumptuous, annoying and meddling.  For reals.

And oh my gosh.. That poor cow! We live across the road from a farm and every fall when they move the cows and calves it's so sad.  The mama cows cry so loud for their calves for like 4 days! The first two days it is 24/7 non-stop.  I hope it doesn't make me cry for real this year.  Speaking of, it should probably be happening this weekend or next.

Blurb from author interview:

Random House Readers Circle: How did the idea for this story come about?
Nancy Pickard: It started with the landscape. I saw a photograph of Monument Rocks in Gove County, Kansas, and it blew me away. Since then, I’ve been out there to see them. They are so unexpected, so enormous, so beautiful, and they’re such a dramatic contrast to the ultraflat ground from which they rise. Even from seeing only a photo, I sensed I had to set a story there. (In the novel, I renamed them Testament Rocks.)

RHRC: Many reviewers have raved about your ability to make Kansas come alive in this book and your previous book. The setting for The Scent of Rain and Lightning is very different from the one you used in The Virgin of Small Plains. How do you choose the settings and landscapes for your stories?
NP: I think they choose me. Something about a landscape will grab me and haunt me. It won’t let go until it has its very own book! Currently I’m working on a book set in the farthest corner of southeastern Kansas, and for a long time I couldn’t figure out why I felt such a compulsion to write about it. It doesn’t have the gorgeous expansive landscape of Virgin or the surprising, spectacular landscape of Scent, so what was pulling me toward it? I finally realized that the landscape under its ground is as interesting as any landscape above ground in other places.

1. Have you read anything else by Nancy Pickard? What was it? Would you recommend it?

2.  What role does weather have in the novel?

3. Have you ever been to a ranch?

4. Do you think Laurie is having an affair or just flirting at this point? Who do you think she is having an affair with? (if you've already finished,  you can put who you thought as you read)

5.  Do you ever keep forgetting that the book is placed in Kansas and not Texas?

6. What is your first impression of the characters so far? (Annabelle, Hugh, Hugh-Jay, Chase, Bobby, Billy Crosby, Laurie, Belle, Jody, Val, Collin etc.. )

Thanks for participating! Come back next week for Discussion 2 over chapters 12-20!

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

Pumping Sucks

In the beginning I loved pumping.  It was proof I was producing food for my darling. It was satisfying to see the containers fill up and know that I was doing a good thing.  It was also a time when I could catch up on texting or reading.

Slowly, over time it became a chore.  It was making me sit still when I wanted to be doing something else.  My daughter spent a month fighting bottles, so why the heck am I even pumping?

Then my daughter started chugging bottles.  Now I feel inadequate and that I'm not going to have enough milk for her regardless.

She also stopped requiring a nipple shield and effectively abused the crap out of my nipples in one week time.  I had to go back to a nipple shield on one side from the pain.  It makes me want to turn in the towel so bad, but then I think of how much she likes nursing.  How quick and easy it is, how CHEAP it is.  How I'm 4 months in and that is freaking amazing. I think of how much formula costs and smells and I pump.

I will keep pumping til I really truly cannot pump anymore because I am not a quitter and even if I want to quit, I cannot quit my baby girl.  So until these bad boys dry up, I'll be annoyed and frustrated.  For her, because she's worth it.  And mama ain't no quitter.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011


Silence.  The whirl of the fan is my only distraction.  Ting,Ting, Ting. 

My chest tightens.  My heart beats faster and faster. My breathing is ragged. Ting, Ting, Ting…

I lie there and try to count. 1, 2, 3, 4, 5… Ting, Ting, Ting.  I get dizzy.  What if I don’t have time?? Did I spend too much money? Did I eat too much? Did the baby get enough food? When will she wake? Are the clothes clean? Did I forget something?

Ting, ting, ting.  Gulping down air I try to clear my mind. 1, 2, 3, 4..

Ting, ting, ting..

I'm linking up with Write on Edges's RemebeRED prompt today.

Saturday, October 1, 2011

September At A Glance..

I'm changing things up this month because I feel like it.

My highlights of the month...

-Having my preschoolers start.

- Getting Isla to take a bottle and take a bottle well... (this week she's had 4 ounces, 5 ounces, 5 ounces and 3 1/2 ounces at daycare!!!!!!)

- Isla ending the month with only waking up once a night to eat!!!!!

- College football! ;)

- Our apples came in great this year and I've made some delicious homemade applesauce and apple crisp!! Yummm.. Hopefully I will be picking more over the weekend and making more applesauce!

- Oatmeal cookies! I made some and I am on an oatmeal kick.  Thinking of making Apple Oatmeal Muffins.

- Came up with a new homemade baked potato soup recipe and it was delicious!!

- Isla rolled over for the first time and now won't stop.

- Got to see my best-friend!

Favorite Photos of the Month...