Thursday, August 27, 2015


Reading:  Big Stone Gap by Adriana Trigani.  I started it two months ago but I decided to pick it back up.  I loved Lucia, Lucia and I think it is such a different pace I needed to space them out. 

Loving: my daughter's personality.  She is hysterical.  She's loving.  She's awesome and she speaks her mind.  Now if only I could get the 4 year old to be a tad better on the delivery of refusal of stuff.  However, I'm not the best at my old age sooo...
Thinking:  a lot about my job and how I'm going to implement all the new things I've learned in the last few weeks of different trainings I've attended

Frustrated: by my anxiety

Feeling:  like there is never enough time.  I am excited to have a weekend with nothing to do but I really don't when that is going to be.  I travel home from Chicago on Saturday and then need to clean, grocery shop and do laundry on Sunday.  I think I will have comp time at some point next week but I also have 3 more days of training at my alma mater.  I know traveling three weekends in a row has a lot to do with this right now.

Anticipating:  seeing my kid and husband on Thursday night! They are coming to Chicago to see me!!

Watching: right now I'm watching Rizzoli & Isles.  I watched a new show on TNT called Public Morals and that looks good too!

Sad:  that summer is almost over.  I'm excited for fall and football but I don't feel like summer has been long enough!

Working: on a plan for work to organize my responsibilities better.

Grateful: that my husband is bringing my daughter to come see me on Thursday.  I miss them!

Listening: to a few podcasts.  Starr Struck and Undisclosed...

Wishing: that my feet weren't so messed up!

What are you currently reading, listening to and anticipating?

Wednesday, August 26, 2015

The Cotton Queen

I picked up a bunch of books last June from the library’s used book sale and I really haven’t put a dent in them.  I have a true book problem.  I also had a real reading slump last school year so I have a huge pile up of books that I need to get into before I bring anymore into my house.  Though, I have done a fairly decent job trying to get rid of books this summer.  It’s just hard for me to part with books, even if I don’t think I’ll read them again.  I think I have an attachment issue with books.  Anyway, The Cotton Queen by Pamela Morsi has been sitting on my shelf for a year and I figured this would be a great book to take camping with me.

Description:  The road away from home always seems to lead back to our mothers.

I am not, nor will I ever be, the kind of woman who wears pearls with her apron while cooking meat loaf for her husband. But when I was a kid, my mother, Babs, prepared me to be the next June Cleaver -- teaching me lessons that belonged to another era. Another world, practically. My mother's world. I couldn't wait to leave home and get away from her. But now, well . . . let's just say life hasn't turned out quite as I'd planned. And heaven help me, I'm going home.

Laney Hoffman -- Cotton Queen, 1975

It's funny -- all I ever wanted was to teach my daughter, Laney, how to be a lady so she could find a good husband and take her rightful place in our community. But Laney has always remained convinced that my life and my ideas are, well, pathetic. She has no idea -- no idea! -- what it is to lose a husband, to watch your dreams wither while keeping a smile on your face for the neighbors. Now, that is a talent. Laney is probably too smart for her own good, but being smart hasn't kept her out of trouble. Thank heavens I'm here to help pick up the pieces.

Babs Hoffman -- Cotton Queen First Runner-Up, 1956

I loved this book! It was a great look into the changing roles and views of women in the last 50 years.  It covers women gaining leverage in the work place, fighting for equal footing and the relationship with mothers over the years.


Both of the women who the book flipped between had positives and negatives.  I had moments when I wanted to shake them both.  They had issues but they sometimes made poor choices.  Don’t we all. 


It touched on some heavy topics that pushed it above the general chick lit category for me.  One of the characters is a solider in Vietnam and is completely changed by this experience.  In turn, this changes his relationship with his entire family when his brother has a different viewpoint.  It forces a divide that takes many years to fix. 


It also has a heavy focus on rape and how it can affect the victim’s life forever.  How it changes viewpoint, relationships, mental health and personality.


So avoid if that is a topic that is a trigger.  Otherwise, I’d recommend it for a quick weekend/beach read.

What's the last book you read that switched viewpoints? What books have you read about families recently?

Tuesday, August 25, 2015

Can You Keep A Secret?

For July we picked a super chick lit book for Books & Bars.  We had come off a few months of tougher reads and we all agreed we needed something funny.  After a rather raucous meeting at a local establishment in June we quickly picked Can You Keep a Secret? by Sophie Kinsella because one of us owned it already and the rest of us were numbed by the beverages and were non-caring. ;)


Description: Meet Emma Corrigan, a young woman with a huge heart, an irrepressible spirit, and a few little secrets: Secrets from her boyfriend: I've always thought Connor looks a bit like Ken. As in Barbie and Ken. Secrets from her mother: I lost my virginity in the spare bedroom with Danny Nussbaum while Mum and Dad were downstairs watching Ben-Hur. Secrets she wouldn't share with anyone in the world: I have no idea what NATO stands for. Or even what it is. Until she spills them all to a handsome stranger on a plane. At least, she thought he was a stranger.…Until Emma comes face-to-face with Jack Harper, the company's elusive CEO, a man who knows every single humiliating detail about her...


Oh Emma… She is something.  She is something I can’t stand reading about too.  She’s a cliché woman character that I just can’t get behind.  I don’t do the stupid ditzy chick and that is her.  The dialogue is hilarious and it’s a quick funny chick lit read but it’s just not something I would have ever chosen for myself.


Jack is a meant to be complicated character who really isn’t.  I don’t think his character was true to itself all the way through and he just was a jerky kinda nice guy.  I don’t know he just didn’t do it for me in the mystery dark past man role.


Basically, if you want a funny chick lit book.  This fits the bill.  And if you need a book that makes you laugh? Go for it.


Beach read potential? HIGH.

What was your last beach read?

Friday, August 14, 2015


The high of my week was just want a pleasant time I experience with my family every night this week.  I’m a lot less stressed and I feel a lot more ‘in’ when I’m home with my family right now.  I also enjoyed my parents stopping over for a visit and how excited my daughter was about it.  We also had a great event at work and I got to interact with a lot of kids and parents and it felt good!

The low of my week was how yucky I feel about myself right now.  I had made such an improvement in my working out and then totally fell off the wagon in July.  I know I had a lot of changes and what not but that really was not a good excuse.  I went on a few walks but that was it.  Any inches I lost previously are back it feels like and they are all centered in my gut region! I need to eliminate that.

The book I’m reading is I finished The Cotton Queen by Pamela Morsi.  I read this book in practically two days.  It was a multi-generational book that looked at the lives of a mother/daughter pair who thought they were soo different but had a lot in common.  It was a really interesting book.  It switched perspectives between Babs and Laney and there were so many women lib issues covered that it was neat to see the differences between the two generations.  Slightly more than just a quick beach read because it delves into rape, drug use and parental death. 

For my workouts, I completed Monday and Tuesday I started the week strong ha.  Monday I ran on the treadmill a run/walk combo of just over a mile.  I did 50 squats and 30 crunches.  Tuesday I walked 25 minutes on my lunch.  However, that night I started PMSing and used it as an excuse not to lift and then I never did anything else all week.  But I worked an even on Thursday which was a lot of walking and carrying heavy items so at least I was active.  I had planned on working out 4 days this week but hey, I did it twice.  Next week I’ll plan for 4 and aim for 3. 

The best money I spent was I didn’t do it, but it was from ‘our’ money.  My husband decided that he had enough of paying my ridiculous student loan payment with the high interest rate so he logged into my account and paid it in full.  Best $18,152.  I’ve ever spent!

My plans this weekend include We are going to Ludington this weekend with some cousins / my husband’s sisters and their families.  So 8 adults and 6 kids! We will hopefully be relaxing on the shores of Lake Michigan!

What was the low and high of your week? Have a great weekend!

Monday, August 10, 2015

A- Z

It's been a long time since I've done a survey style post.. So why not today? I'm stealing this from Amber. 

A – Age: 31, it just doesn't seem right.. I live by Jimmy Buffett's words, 'growing older but not up'.  Though I am maturing in my older age ha.

B – Biggest Fear: the unknown
C – Current Time: 9:45 pm

D – Drink You Had Last: currently drinking a Short's Bellaire Brown.  Love my Michigan craft beer!

E – Easiest Person To Talk To: my mama

F – Favorite Song: I don't really have one.. I like country.. I love singing to Luke Bryan and Eric Church.. and some top 40 stuff..

G – Grossest Memory: I have dealt in such gross matters it's hard to pick something that stands out.  I mean I've been thrown up on by a child not my own, stepped in a child's poop on the floor... I mean i dont know.. my kid had super gross poop for like a year ha.

H – Hometown: a very small town in MI that I will not name because it basically would out me if someone googled.. not to say someone couldn't figure it out anyway.. I just don't like connecting a lot of dots ha

I – In Love With: coffee.  I've become a bit obsessed in the past year.  more so than normal

J – Jealous Of: People who know what they want to do in life

K – Kindest Person You Know: probably one of my former coworkers

L – Longest Relationship: 12 years with my husband.. we will have been married for 8 this  month

M – Middle Name: my maiden name..

N – Number of Siblings: 1 – younger brother

O – One Wish: to know if I want to have another child or not.  I always thought I'd want four.  I think if I stayed home and didn't need to worry about work it would be easier to make this decision.  But I like the lifestyle we have when we both work.

P – Person You Spoke To On The Phone Last: I'm thinking it was a client at work yesterday.  I rarely talk on the phone!

Q – Question You’re Always Asked: When are you going to have another child?

R – Reason To Smile: It’s a Saturday night!

S – Song You Last Sang: I tried singing along with Ariel when we were watching The Little Mermaid earlier and my daughter told me to stop

T – Time You Woke Up: 6:53 when I heard my daughter screaming for me to get out of bed

U – Underwear Color: pink and black

V – Vacation Destination: this summer we've done Higgins Lake and Clear Lake with Ludington (Lake Michigan) and Port Crescent (Saginaw Bay/Lake Huron) on the agenda.  Savannah/Charleston is going to be our next planned trip I think

W – Worst Habit: interrupting people

X – X-Rays You’ve Had: knees and ankles and arm.. maybe the knee was an MRI.

Y – Your Favorite Food: nachos

Z – Zodiac Sign: Aries

I’m just going to pick some random letters for you to answer in the comments. Tell me the answers to: D, G, S and V! 

Tuesday, August 4, 2015

Double Mint

Last summer I was introduced to the Davis Way Crime Caper Series and read the first books as quick as I could.  I was contacted again this summer because the 4th book, Double Mint, came out this summer.  I was glad to cozy up in my chair and read about Davis's hilarious misadventures.

Description: It’s convention season at the Bellissimo Resort and Casino and Davis Way Cole barely notices. It’s hard to pay attention when you live in a Jambalaya Junkyard. But when Special Events Coordinator Holder Darby walks off the job just as five hundred Alabama bankers pour in the front door, Davis steps up.

Or would that be in? Definitely in. Davis steps in.


Not only has the convention director vanished, but a certain Bellissimo guest is missing. One who forgot to pack the million dollars he left in the bathtub. It looks like our redhead newlywed Super Secret Spy’s lazy summer is over when the Bellissimo vault is robbed. Can Davis connect the dots before it’s too late? Can she get her Taser gun back from Bianca Sanders? Will she be stuck with Eddie Crawford’s 1962 Cadillac forever? What Davis needs is a little faith. And a lot of luck.


New money. Old sins. Back to jail. And a cat.

(A cat?)

Break the Bank

Like the other books, there is something special going on in the casino and of course there is an issue with it.  Of course no one will listen to Davis (I mean she does tend to ramble and ridiculous things seem to follow her but...) and she plunges head into finding out the whodunnit, why and when.  Of course there is a motive for her (get rid of Magnolia from her apartment) but it is after all her job to protect the casino's interests! 

The book is funny, this series is hilarious.  I would highly recommend it as a humor book!

However, I'd recommend starting at the beginning! It's hard to jump in to the characters without the background.  But have no fear, it will only take you 3 days to get to book number 4 because they are that funny and that quick to read!
What humor books/authors have you read? What cozy mystery books have you read? What has made you laugh out loud recently?

I received this book to read for review but all thoughts and opinions are my own!