2009 Pub Challenge

I came across one more challenge for 2009 - being hosted by Michelle at 1morechapter.com.
The guidelines are:
  1. Read a minimum of 9 books first published in 2009. You don’t have to buy these. Library books, unabridged audios, or ARCs are all acceptable. To qualify as being first published in 2009, it must be the first time that the book is published in your own country. For example, if a book was published in Australia, England, or Canada in 2008, and then published in the USA in 2009, it counts (if you live in the USA). Newly published trade paperbacks and mass market paperbacks do not count if there has been a hardcover/trade published before 2009. Any questions on what qualifies? Just leave a comment on the post about the challenge, and Michelle will set you straight!
  2. No children’s/YA titles allowed, since we’re at the ‘pub.’
  3. At least 5 titles must be fiction.
  4. Crossovers with other challenges are allowed.
  5. You can add your titles as you go, and they may be changed at any time.
Sounds like fun and will match up with the rest of the challenges I'm doing. If you want to join in the challenge, sign up through the link above. Happy Reading!

Post to Ponder

Thoughts on the 2008 Election

I came across two excellent articles by two popular authors Orson Scott Card and Wayne Thomas Batson and just had to share them.

Orson writes a weekly column called World Watch for The Ornery American. His recent column is "What Really Matters As We Vote" I read it yesterday and was quite impressed. He has links to several sites in his column to check out.

Wayne Thomas Batson is a christian author and has written a very thoughtful post about the 2008 Election. Click over to his blog: Enter the Door Within about his thoughts on the issues and the candidates.

As Winnie the Pooh would say "Think, Think, Think"

Weeky Report #8

Weekly Wrap up

We had a semi light week. I didn't have time to plan lessons on Sunday when we returned from AZ, so quickly put the list together Monday of plans for the week.

Devotions: All about wisdom and trusting God. Read through Proverbs 3 and discussed. We are working on attitude, being polite and respecting your elders.

English: Finished up Section two on Sentences and worked on words used as both nouns and verbs.

Spelling: Completed Lesson 9 about consonant blends.

Cursive: Handwriting without Tears Grade 4 book arrived and completed the first four lessons.

Math: Started Kumon's "My Book of Simple Subtraction." I also purchased DK Math made easy and will be mixing in worksheets along with subtraction. It's clicking now!

Chemistry: Father and James are enjoying reading The Mystery of the Periodic Table. This week they finished Ch 12 Nature never creates other than Balance in Hand and Ch 13 Mr Dalton and His Atoms. Father made up a worksheet of chemistry compounds and had James complete it.

Of course, Father had to test me when I got home to see if I knew how to read a chemical compound. I did - he was impressed I remembered.

Thursday afternoon, Father and James ran over to a local farm to pick up some pumpkins. James called me at work all excited - "Mom, we got three pumpkins, one little, one medium size and one big one. Now you get to carve them." Lucky me.

Isn't he cute. He's taken over Father's cowboy hat, because he's outgrown his own. And he is even tipping his hat when he passes a lady and saying "Ma'am". He watched one episode of rifleman with Father so I guess that is where he picked it up from.

Happy Halloween

Trick or Trick, smell my feet,
give me something good to eat.

If you don't I won't be sad.
I'll just make you wish you had.
- Monty Harper

Courtesy someone on internet,don't remember who

Booking Through Thursday - Are you a spine breaker?

Mariel from Where Troubles Melt Like Lemon Drops asks:

Are you a spine breaker? Or a dog-earer? Do you expect to keep your books in pristine condition even after you have read them? Does watching other readers bend the cover all the way round make you flinch or squeal in pain?

I'm neither a spine breaker or a dog earer: anymore. Used to be when 17 years old and didn't give a thought to who would be reading the book after me. Now, (30 years later) I'm more respectful of the books I buy and read: Always use bookmarks or use the flap of the book cover. However, 9 times out of 10 son comes behind me and sees the flap stuck in the middle of the book and "fixes" it. Grrrrr! I try to keep my books in pristine condition and all get shelved properly in or on the bookshelves. I positively hate reading books with grungy pages, broken spines, etc. Hence, the reason I don't get library books. Also, the reason I don't lend out books. I'd rather give away the book, then I don't have to worry what kind of shape it will be in when it's returned.

Paperbacks can be a little difficult though. I've come across a few, that you have to practically split the book in the middle in order to read the story. The words going all the way to the middle seam of the book. What choice do you have, but to pull it wide open (gently, of course), flatten out the page by running your finger down the middle crease in order to read it.

I cringe whenever my hubby stops reading because he will leave the book open, spine up on the table and forget about it. Yes, I go behind him and immediately grab a bookmark, mark his place and put the book on his bedside stand. "Hey, where's my book?" rings through the house. He's learning.

So, how do you handle your books? Head on over to Booking through Thursday to see what everyone else has to say.

Posts to Ponder

The interesting and maybe not so interesting

Colidiotone at Word press

Please welcome my dad to the blog world. He is a retired colonel in the Air Force and I helped him set it up while in AZ. He will have lots to say about the presidential election, the stock market, and whatever else comes to mind. Check it out and be sure to bookmark it.

Hannity's America - A couple nights ago we caught Hannity's America. Sean Hannity expounded on the 10 reasons why Obama should not be president. The expose was very well done, interesting and educational. I hope they rerun it a few times between now and the election for more people to see.

Our wonderful county supervisors has approved this to be put in our Airport to the tune of almost $1 million dollars.

Yep, it is a 56 foot red, fiberglass rabbit that will hang from the ceiling in the center of our new airport terminal. Supposedly a certain amount of the budget has to be applied to art and for some reason they aren't or won't waive that. Seems stupid during this period of time to waste so much money on it.

Interesting bit of news: A federal judge ruled a 6th grader can wear a pro-life shirt to school.

Obama/Biden tax plan has changed again. Remember the tax break that will go to those who make less than $250,000. Then it went down to $200,000. Now the break will go to those who make less than $140,000. They need to make up their mind. No wonder Biden has been muzzled. He truly is becoming a hindrance to Obama's campaign. Maybe it will work in McCain's favor.

Someone please explain to me that why is it when someone hangs an effigy of Sarah Palin from their house, it's considered a halloween decoration and left alone. But, when they hang an effigy of Obama, it's considered a hate crime and immediately taken down. Can you say "Double Standard." Either way, it is wrong.

There's only 3 days left until National Novel Writing Month begins....I'm working on a broad outline and have made a list of major and minor characters. The villain's name keeps changing for some reason. I can't decide whether want him to be Italian or not. Would that be too cliche?

Wordless Wednesday

What's On Your Nightstand

It's the fourth Tuesday of the month and 5 Minutes for Books is hosting the carnival of What's On Your Nightstand. Jennifer wants to know all about who and what we're reading, when we find time to read, why we've chosen what to read and where we read.

I've gotten through some of my TBR pile and added a few more. I've finished 13 of the 20 of my Fall Reading Challenge Books and review links are posted on the sidebar. There are about 3 or 4 books from the challenge that I haven't even gotten yet. Will probably pick those up in December after Nano.

What's curr
ently on my nightstand. Take a Look.

Dead Even by Mariah Stewart, Deat Heat by Joel Rosenberg and Seventh Day by Bodie Thoene are for the Fall Reading Challenge.

Hadassah by Tenney is just because.

Life of Pi by Yann Martell is because I joined the Martell Harper Challenge and the book has been on my wishlist for quite a while. Agatha Christie's Murder of Roger Ackroyd is part of the Challenge. The other Christie book is just because it was there and looked good so picked it up.

I came across Ghost in the Machine by Caroline Graham when doing research for my mystery story.
I'm currently reading a nonfiction book called "Mystery writers" edited by Sue Grafton and my mom loves Grafton, plus have been considering reading her ABC series for a while. Starting with A of course - A is for Alibi.

The rest are just because they looked good and are pretty much 2nd and 3rd reads of various new authors I have fallen in "like" with.

That's the who and what and why. Where is usually anywhere in my house that's comfortable. When I read, it's rarely after going to bed, otherwise I get caught up and read half the night. Otherwise the rest of the day is up for grabs reading wise. After breakfast, before Father gets up; during lunch; or after lessons are done. Father usually gets home around 8:30, but if he works late, then will read after James goes to bed. I'd much rather read than watch tv anyday.

So...what's on your nightstand?

Teaser Tuesday - Dead Certain

It's Teaser Tuesdays over at MizB's

Grab your current read.Let the book fall open to a random page. Share with us two (2) “teaser” sentences from that page, somewhere between lines 7 and 12.

"She could never drive this road without remembering those nights more than a year ago when headlights would appear out of nowhere to blind her in the rearview mirror, making the drive home a nightmarish ride into hell." (pg 26)

"Vince laughed out loud in the dark room. There was just nothing in the world like a single, middle aged woman. He could wrap any one of them around his little finger, just like that." (pg 145)

Dead Certain by Mariah Stewart

Book Review - Brisinger



Christopher Paolini

Rating: ***** Excellent

I brought Brisinger with me on our vacation to Arizona. It is 748 pages long and is the 3rd in Paolini's Inheritance series. And surprise, surprise - it isn't the conclusion, there's a book four that will being coming out at some point. My folks generally went to bed around 9:30 which gave me the opportunity to read in the evenings. I started it on Monday when we reached the hotel and finished it Friday night. Excellent story continuing Eragon's saga

Book Description: "It's been only months since Eragon first uttered 'brisinger,' an ancient language term for fire. Since then, he's not only learned to create magic with words--he's been challenged to his very core. Following the colossal battle against the Empire's warriors on the Burning Plains, Eragon and his dragon, Saphira, have narrowly escaped with their lives. Still, there is more adventure at hand for the Rider and his dragon, as Eragon finds himself bound by a tangle of promises he may not be able to keep.

First is Eragon's oath to his cousin, Roran: to help rescue Roran's beloved from King Galbatorix's clutches. But Eragon owes his loyalty to others too. The Varden are in desparate need of his talents and strength--as are the elves and dwarves. When unrest claims the rebels and danger strikes from every corner, Eragon must make choices--choices that will take him across the Empire and beyond, choices that may lead to unimagined sacrifice.

Eragon is the greatest hope to rid the land of tryanny. Can this once simple farm boy unite the rebel forces and defeat the king?"

Order of the inheritance series: Eragon, Eldest, then Brisinger

Very well done and highly recommend reading it. The story does contain many graphic battle scenes.

And I'm finally caught up with my book reviews. Since I committed to MizB's 2009 Read and Review Challenge, I probably should write a review immediately upon finishing one book and not start another until I do. It would be great practice and would be easier. Especially since Nanowrimo starts in 5 days! Will I actually have the time to read during the month of November? Who knows - we'll see.

Book Review - Brink of Death

Brink of Death
Hidden Faces Series


Brandilyn Collins

Rating: **** awesome

Back Cover Excerpt: "Annie Kingston moves to Grove Landing for safety and quiet--and comes face to face with evil. When neighbor Lisa Willit is killed by an intruder in her home, sheriff's detectives are left with little evidence. Lisa's daughter, Erin, saw the killer, but she's too traumatized to give a description. The detectives grow desperate. Because of her background as a courtroom sketch artist, Annie is asked to question Erin and draw a composite. But Annie knows little about forensice art or the sensitive interview process. A nonbeliever, she finds herself begging God for help. What if her lack of experience leads Erin astray? The detectives could end up searching for a fact that doesn't exist. Leaving the real killer free to stalk the neighborhood...."

Brink of Death is an awesome story with lots of suspense, action and courage. It is written in the first person perspective of Annie Kingston with a few scenes from the villian's point of view. I highly recommend it - but don't start reading it before you go to bed. It will keep you up until you finish it.

Book Review - Sinner

A Paradise Novel


Ted Dekker

Rating: *** good

Description: Sinner is the story of Marsuvees Black, a personification of raw evil who speaks with wicked persuasion far more destructive than swords or guns. Beware all who stand in his way. It’s the story of Billy Rediger and Darcy Lange, two unsuspecting survivors of a research project gone bad, who discover that they are quite extraordinary, perhaps the two single most powerful souls in the land. Listen to them or pay a terrible price. And it’s the story of Johnny Drake, the one who comes out of the desert and leads the 3000. Follow him and die.

Sinner is the 3rd and final story in the Paradise series. Showdown is the first and Saint is the 2nd. The story is well done and interesting, but the characters are lukewarm at best and the action doesn't pack the powerful punch that the first two did. In Showdown, you positively felt the evil of Marsuvees Black. Unfortunately, I didn't get the same impression in Sinner. The message was the most important factor in the story: Don't take your freedom for granted.

Book Review - Show No Mercy

Show No Mercy
Black Ops # 1


Cindy Gerard

Rating: ***** Excellent

Back Cover Excerpt: Only two things can compel Journalist Jenna McMillan back to Buenes Aires after terrorists held her captive there just months before: a rare interview with a shadowy billionaire and the memory of the dark and dangerous man who saved her... Bad guys, bombs and bullets are Gabriel Jones's way of life. But he'll never forget the brash redhead he rescued not so long ago.. or the passionate kiss they shared before he sent her packing. Now forced together by a bombing at the National congress, Jenna and Gabe confront the urgent longings that simmer between them. But this surprise meeting is no coincidence. A ruthless enemy stalks them with deadly precision. The question is... if they make it out alive, will Gabe turn his back on Jenna ... again?

Show No Mercy is the first in a new romantic suspense series with lots of suspense, drama and action as well as passion. If you read any of her Bodyguard Series, this new Black Ops series is along the same caliber. Gabe and Jenna were introduced in Into The Dark (Bodyguards # 6). The story is well done with the just the right balance of action and romance. I don't want to give any of the story away, so go read it for yourself. I highly recommend it.

Arizona Vacation

We're back! It was an interesting drive, pretty much a straight shot up I-5 - thanks goodness for cruise control. Crossed over to highway 99 via 46 through Lost Hills. Will never stop in Lost Hills again. We dropped by McDonalds for a bite to eat and have a restroom break. Flies all over the place, inside and out. Yeech! Continued up hilly CA-58 to Mojave and got to the Best Western Desert Inn around 8:00 p.m. Very nice clean place, right across from a very busy train track. Good thing we like the sound of trains.

I'm so glad we didn't decide to stop the night in Barstow. When we got back on the road in the morning, it was another hour's drive. I-40 was more of the same - straight shot up through the hills.

We listened to a couple audio story books by Jim Weiss - Giants and Uncle Wiggly. James is a good traveler but hates to stop until we get to our location.

We arrived at my folks house mid afternoon. My mom was just getting over that horrible bug that leaves you with a hacking cough. So we took it easy and had a wonderful, relaxing time.

The wind was blowing like crazy on Wednesday so we took it easy. Drove down by the Colorado River by Davis Dam. I got out to take some pictures and was almost blown away. We went over to Perkins for lunch and then over to Walmart to pick up some goodies.

Thursday, Grandpa, James and I went over to Lake Mojave and tried our hand at fishing. The wind was still blowing like crazy, but grandpa had promised James he take him fishing.

The fish were biting, but not in the mood to be caught. Twice, the buggers chomp off the fish bait and the whole hook. Then, when grandpa cut the bait into smaller pieces, they just nibbled those off.

We went over to the marina which is a protective area for the fish. On the way, Grandpa coached James on how to call the fish.

The fish hang out by the dock and beg for food. They swim close enough to pet, but if the ranger catches you, they will fine you.

Friday, we went over to Keepers of the Wild. It is an animal sanctuary for endangered animals such as lions, tigers, wolves, etc. Very interesting place started years ago by Jonathan Kraft. Most of the animals have been abused or abandoned by owners and brought to Jonathan to take care of. We went on a safari tour and one of the volunteer's, Sarah, told us about each of the animals. Check out their website to find out about some of them.

Saturday morning, my cousin came over with her adorable 7 month old granddaughter and we visited for a while, before taking off for home. We spent the night in Bakersfield at the Best Western Crystal Palace. Nice place but not very sound proof. We arrived home Sunday afternoon around 1:30. We had a good trip and it is nice to be home.

Arizona bound

Our bags are packed, we ready to go. We standing here outside the door.

Oh, sorry. I seem to be channeling "we leaving on a jet plane". We've said goodbye to Father and he has gone off to work. I'm finishing my lunch while James watches "Charlie Brown Thanksgiving". Why is he watching cbt? He saw a preview at Target yesterday while we were looking at videos and decided he just had to watch it before we leave.

We are taking off for Bullhead City, Arizona to visit my parents, just a mother/son trip. Never done it before so should be interesting. It is a nine hour drive so decided to split the drive in half. We will stop tonight in Mojave and stay next to Edwards AFB. Then tomorrow continue the rest of the way. And I will have my trusty Kodak camera so will take plenty of pictures.

What books am I taking you ask? Why Brisinger, of course. And if I managed to finish it, I also have A Ghost in the Machine, a Chief Inspector Barnaby Novel by Caroline Graham and one of the Martel Harper Challenge Books The Murder of Roger Ackroyd by Agatha Christie. You think I'll finish those all in a week? Probably.

Now I just have to go entice the cats to come back in the house so we can leave.

TTFN - Ta Ta for now as tigger would say.

Musing Mondays - reading survey

THIS week’s MUSING MONDAYS post is about a “reading” survey, and what it had to say…

MizB recently read an article (here), that I found through BiblioAddict’s blog, that talked of “why women read more than men“. In it, author Ian McEwan is quoted saying:

“When women stop reading, the novel will be dead.”

Do you believe this to be true? Why, or why not?

I don't think the novel will be dead if women stopped reading, but I seriously doubt women or anyone else will ever stop reading. I know quite a few men and children who read everyday: family, friends, and relatives, plus all the bloggers out there. I've been reading since learned how in the 1st grade. I even won the prize (the coveted Gold Star) for the most books read in my class - once I started, you couldn't stop me from devouring books. It was love at first sight.

The owner of my favorite used bookstore was discouraged the other day about people not reading anymore and started quoting the statistics from a study that said only about 50% of the population reads now and less than 25% of teenagers read anymore. He was lamenting that when his kids grow up they won't want to own or operate the bookstore. Of course, his wife had just had a baby and I think it was the lack of sleeping making him down. I let him vent because I didn't agree with the study. They probably had only talked to about 100 people anyway. I really irks me how its reported that such and such percentage of the population think a certain way when the survey uses less than 1% of the population. But that is a post for another day.

I don't think people will ever stop reading, which should be encouraging to all those future authors out there.

Book Review - House of Wolves

House of Wolves

An August Adams Adventure

Matt Bronleewee

Front Flap Excerpt: "Yesterday was August Adam's birthday. It didn't go well. Today is worse. He's being chased, slashed, lied to, knocked out, shot at...and tied up with his ex-wife and young son in the freezing belly of a plane on the way to the bottom of the world. All because of a very rare book with a secret, a nazi plan that's been in deep freeze for half a century, and an ancient, power-hungry underground organization with eyes on a holy--and possibly deadly--prize. The implications are both global and intensely personal. Because unless August Adams figures it all out soon, no one near him will live to see tomorrow."

August's dad sends him a rare birthday present - a book called The Gospels of Henry the Lion. Is it a copy or the original? It doesn't matter to the secret society, The Black Vehms. They want the book no matter what. The body count rises as August and his family are chased from the streets of New York to the unbearable cold of Antarctica. August must solve the riddle of the book in order to save his life and the life of his family. What secrets will be revealed?

August Adam's adventure began in The Illuminated and continues in House of Wolves. A third novel, The Deadly hours will be out in August 2009.

Book Review - Trail by Fire

Trial by Fire
Newpointe 911 # 4

Terri Blackstock

Rating: **** Awesome

Warning: contains spoilers

Front Flap Excerpt: "Pastor and fireman Nick Foster found the body in the inferno engulfing his church. From the bullet wound in the head, it's clear this is no ordinary fire victim. The quiet community of Newpointe, reeling from the shock of the dead man's identity, struggles with the agonizing question, who did it--and why? Paramedic Issie Mattreaux is no icon of virtue, but she cares enough about her teenage nephew, Jake, to track him down when he turns up missing. Only, what she finds is far more than a harmless bonfire on the outskirts of town.
After a chilling attempt on Issie's life, Nick takes on the role of protector even as he struggles with the tragedy that has struck his church. Whoever is behind the fire is far from finished. Unknown to Nick, that person's twisted agenda now threatens to consume everything he loves most."

In Trial by Fire the KKK has come to town. Cruz, the grandson of the retired grand wizard of the KKK is influencing teenagers to the bad side and sets out to cause trouble in the town of Newpointe. Nick's church is burned to the ground and the body of a young black man found dead inside from a gunshot wound to the head. Issie's nephew Jake is involved and puts Issie's life in danger when she tries to intervene. Nick is disheartened by the loss of his church, the death of his dear friend's son and his lack of faith in accepting God's will. While he tries to overcome his physical pain from burns received in the fire, he wrestles with his lack of faith and if he should leave the ministry. Mixed in with all the trouble is his attraction to Issie who is a non believer. Issie also has to deal with the lack of trust by the townspeople as she tries to save Jake and prevent another murder. Will Nick continue to be a minister; will Issie stop Cruz and his supporters; will Issie finally accept the Lord; and finally what will happen between Nick and Issie. These questions and more are answered in this very suspenseful, heart rendering story of death, loss and faith.

Weekly Report #7

Weekly Wrap Up

Proverbs: We read 1 Warnings against enticement and rejecting wisdom and 2 moral benefits of wisdom and discussed the meanings of all. We are using The Adventure Bible by Zonderkids in the new international version. It has great "Let's Live It" sections and the one for this section is "Think before you act." Which is beneficial for James because that is what he needs to do. It suggests you count to five and ask yourself 5 things before you act.

1) Is it right?
2) Is is good?
3) Is it helpful?
4) Would my parents approve?
5) Would God approve?

If you answer no to any of the questions, stop what you are doing. I had him write the 5 questions down (in his best handwriting) and we will post it to his wall.

Cursive: He finished the 3rd grade cursive book and did an excellent job.

Spelling: Completed lesson 8 about consonant blends.

English: Completed 2.7 and 2.8 Plural Possessive Nouns and Irregular Plural Possessive Nouns. This was a great lesson for Father and I as well because neither one of us remembered the rules for Plural Possessive Nouns. Father said because he simply doesn't write that way.

Example of Plural Possessive Nouns:

"Mom washed the girls' bicycles"
"Daddy tripped over the babies' toys."
" The players' uniforms were blue and gold."
"All the marching bands' performances were great!"
" The drummers' drums were really huge!"

I think I try to avoid writing sentences like these and that's why I don't use the plural possessive very often. Or maybe I have just been doing it wrong. Hmmm!

Math: Took a break this week since we finished the addition book and the subtraction book didn't arrive yet. Father made up a couple worksheets and taught James some easy subtraction. Got it right away.

History: In TCOO we read How the Flag of France was Planted in Florida. This was an interesting story that I hadn't remembered. The french sailed to Florida and then went up the coast to what is now South Carolina. 30 men were chosen to stay and start a colony. The ship returned to France with news of the discovery and would return with more people and food. The colonists built a fort, but unfortunately didn't have any experience in farming. They relied upon the natives for food until they didn't have anymore to share. When the captain didn't return, they built a sail boat (non of the men had boat building experience) and set sail for france. They got lost at sea, adift in a sailboat, when the winds died down and didn't start back up for a long time. They ran out of food and had to resort to eating one of their own.

James didn't like the part about canniblism at all and went into a full out, hands over the ears, lalalalala, I don't want to hear this mode. Father wasn't too terribly thrilled when I told him about the chapter, either. My men are so squeemish!

Chemistry: Father and James covered the chapter on elements and read Chapter 11 A Revolution of Names in Mystery of Periodic Table. Ch 11 was about Lavoisier developing a new system of names for the elements. Plus discovered why he was arrested and put to death. The charges: he was guilty of adding water to tobacco, of building a wall around Paris to the detriment of the people's heath, and of collecting excess taxes." (pg 71) These were all considered trumped up charges simply because he supported the King during the French Revolution.

James finished the 20 books he needed to earn King Kong versus Godzilla and the movie arrived on Tuesday. He has enjoyed watching the movie this week.

No lessons next week - we are off to Arizona on Monday.

Posts to Ponder

Blogs to check out

Lisa over at Lisachaos has the most amazing photographs this week. The macro shots of the fuzzy worm are astonishing.

Dewey over at The Hidden Side of the Leaf is giving away spooky halloween books given to her by the Hackette group. Head on over to her site to sign up, but you have to do it by 12:00 p.m. PST.

And she is also hosting The 24 Hour Readathon

which begins tomorrow at noon GMT. Gargantuan Books has set up a site where you can find all participants and cheerleaders. Check them out tomorrow and cheer on the readers. No I'm not participating, but will unofficially cheer on a few tomorrow.

Check out the weekly reporters and find out what they have accomplished this week.

Brandilyn Collins blogs about a Nebraska Legislator's lawsuit against God. Yes, you read that correctly. A legislator filed a lawsuit against God; fortunately he lost.

The Anchoress has some interesting commentary about "Joe the plumber." Does Joe represents the common man and if he does, why are people working so hard to discredit him.

Booking through Thursday

Did I lose a day? Nope, just Booking through Thursday getting an early start.

Okay–here was an interesting article by Christopher Schoppa in the Washington Post.

Avid readers know all too well how easy it is to acquire books — it’s the letting go that’s the difficult part. … During the past 20 years, in which books have played a significant role in both my personal and professional lives, I’ve certainly had my fair share of them (and some might say several others’ shares) in my library. Many were read and saved for posterity, others eventually, but still reluctantly, sent back out into the world.

But there is also a category of titles that I’ve clung to for years, as they survived numerous purges, frequent library donations and countless changes of residence. I’ve yet to read them, but am absolutely certain I will. And should. When, I’m not sure, as I’m constantly distracted by the recent, just published and soon to be published works.

So, the question is his: “What tomes are waiting patiently on your shelves?"

We acquired quite a few books over the years from library and garage sales, college days. We also received some great classics when Father's mom passed away. They sit in a place of honor on our living room bookshelves where I look at them every single day. And every time I look at those books the thought runs through my mind - "I should read that" They are waiting patiently for that day.

Interesting books such as Moonstone by Wilkie Collins, an english novelist who died in 1889.

The Arabian Nights Entertainment, which is a 2 volume collection of 65 stories told by Shahrazade the sultaness to divert Shahrya to avenge the disloyalty of his first sultaness. Translated from arabic to english by Sir Richard Francis Burton, Edward Lane, John Payne and Henry Whitelock Torrens.

Also among the tomes waiting to be read are Brothers Karamazov and The Idiot by Dostoevesky, Les Miserables, Ivanhoe, The Tragedies of William Shakespeare, Five Great Diaogues by Plato and On Man in the Universe by Aristotle.

And for a little light reading - Sharon Kay Penman's books When Christ and his saints slept, Sunne in Splendor, Falls the Shadow and Here Be Dragons.

So, what tomes are patiently waiting for you? Head on over to Booking through Thursday to see what others have to say.

Wordless Wednesday

Whiskers on Wednesday

Kitty Love

Happy Anniverary

Happy 55th Anniversary


My parents

How they met


Back in January of 1953 I was a member of a group of gals who went to the bases around the area and danced with the guys in the service. We would meet at the YMCA in downtown San Antonio and get on a bus. We were then driven to Lackland AFB NCO Club. We all had to sit at the same table and we could only drink soft drinks. The guys would come over and ask us to dance. A wonderful setup for gals who just loved to dance.

One night, this scrawny countrified looking guy came over and asked me to dance. We were not allowed to refuse to dance with anybody, so we danced and during the dance we talked and he was fascinated by my nickname “shy” because he was from Chicago and that was the nickname for the city, “SHYTOWN.” He asked me for my phone number and I gave it to him. We danced by a guy who was sitting at one of the tables and he gave my number to him to write down. I just thought he was a strange kid.

We got together later and our first date was to a concert in Breckenridge Park where we sat on a small hill above the orchestra because it didn’t cost anything and we could still enjoy the music. Your dad did not make a lot of money so we had many free dates. At the time I was working at the City Hall tax Dept and living with my sister Peggy and her husband, Floyd. We got along great so we went together until October. 54 Years ago we tied the knot at a justice of the peace because I was not catholic and dad was. One year later after taking instructions to become a Catholic we were married in the church and the rest is history.


In December 1952 I was assigned to Kelly Air Force Base in San Antonio, Texas. I was 21 and a Sergeant in the Air Force. After two years in the Air Force this was my 6th duty assignment having gone from San Antonio, TX to Oakland, CA to Anchorage, AK to the Aleutian Islands, to Mobile, AL and then back to San Antonio, TX. My quarters were in a barracks next to two buildings which housed all the women stationed at Kelly. The side of the barracks that was parallel to the women's barracks had five to six men to a room. On the other side of the two story building the rooms were vacant. I chose a vacant room and did not spend my evenings looking out the window waiting for a WAF to leave the shades up while she changed cloths. After work during the week I would eat a early dinner at the mess hall and then sleep for two to three hours, get up, shower and then go out on the town. The sergeant who had the next room all to himself became a good friend and was the best man at my future wedding.

Some time in January he mentioned that the Non Commissioned Officers Club at Lackland AFB had a dance and that the USO brought women in to entertain the troops. He asked me if I could dance and I told him I had dancing lessons in grammar school. He couldn't dance but he said we could go as a team and that I could scope out the women, get their phone numbers, and then we could follow up on those we wanted to go out with. I would get the info and pass it to him, he would write the info down, and I could just keep on dancing. Sounded good. And that's how I met Shiela. She was a much better dancer than I was and had great rhythm. Shiela made the list and after the first date I was hooked. Most women don't like to go "dutch treat" but Shiela didn't seem to mind that I didn't have any money. Over the following months we went dancing at some of the local clubs in San Antonio. We got married in October and went dancing that night at the "Kit Kat Club". Fifty four years later, Shiela is my best friend and I tell people I am still on my honeymoon and madly in love with this women that I was lucky enough to have dance into my life.

Thank you mom and dad for being an inspiration to us.

Love you bunches

Musing Mondays - favorite genre and author

Today's Musing Mondays ask

Could you narrow down your reading to a favorite genre and author? Why, or why not?

Not at all. I don't have one particular genre that I lean towards. The genres I read are all over the map. If you look at my book shelves, you will see science fiction, christian fiction, romance, suspense, to the classics and non fiction. I have favorite authors and will read anything that author has written, such as Nora Roberts, Mercedes Lackey, Stuart Woods, Ted Dekker, Dale Brown, Linda Howard. I love discovering new authors, new to me that is. What I read varies by my mood as well.

What about you?

Fun Time

Rock park

We went to a different park on Friday that is across town. It is a neat place with a sizable play area, picnic area, tennis court, soccer field, and big rocks to climb. It was early afternoon and at first no one was there. James has fun wherever he goes - whether anyone else is there or not. He's quite good at amusing himself.

He went rock climbing

I did it Mom!

Oh Man, how do I get down?

After a while, a little boy and his father showed up. He was the cutest little kid. When I asked him how old he was, he gestured from his feet to his head and said "this many". He had a high pitched giggle like a cartoon character and was very happy. He wanted James to play with him, so James plopped down in the sand with him and played trucks.

The little guy followed James around on the play equipment and they did the swings together. It was cute to see.

James Reading Challenge

He did it!

James wanted to get King Kong versus Godzilla. So, I made the agreement with him that if he read 20 books he would earn it. The books had to be chapter books or difficult reads, not easy readers. He read the following books, most of them out loud to me during the day or at bedtime.

  1. Star Wars Empire Strikes Back (junior novelization)
  2. Star Wars New Hope (junior novelization)
  3. Star Wars Return of the Jedi (junior novelization)
  4. Star Wars Phantom Menace (junior novelization)
  5. Star Wars Attack of the Clones (junior novelization)
  6. Star Wars Revenge of the Sith (junior novelization)
  7. Star Wars Epic Battles
  8. The Story of Darth Vader
  9. The Little Red Train Storybook
  10. The Adventures of Diego Columbus
  11. Winnie the Pooh original adventures
  12. Lion King
  13. Toy Story
  14. The Magic Tree House #1 Dinosaurs before Dark
  15. The Magic Tree House #2 Knights before Dawn
  16. The Magic Tree House #3 Mummies in the Morning
  17. The Magic Tree House #4 Pirates Past Noon
  18. Return of the 3rd Grade Ghost Hunters
  19. Flat Stanley
  20. Frog Wars: lessons in perseverance (veggie tales star wars story)

Weekly Report #6

Weekly Wrap Up

Lessons didn't go exactly as planned this week, but we ended up getting alot done anyhow. Father was totally exhausted when he got back from the AES show, which meant he didn't go to work on Monday and I ended up going to work Tuesday and Wednesday.

Devotions: Read about Esther and God's Purpose. When we were reading the story of Esther, James recognized it from his Veggie Tales dvd: Esther, the girl who became queen. Very good story and of course, we had to watch it. We also started our bible study and James decided he wanted to learn Proverbs first.

Cursive: Working on Capitals and will be finished with the book next week.

He is doing an awesome job with handwriting.

English: Completed Section 2.5 and 2.6 plus workbook about singular possessive and irregular plural nouns.

Spelling: Lesson 7 - long vowel sounds - James aced the test as always.

Math: Completed the Kumon Workbook of Addition. James chose to do two lessons and finish off the book. We start Subtraction next week along. Will still work on Addition with handout from various sources.

Science: Learned about Atoms and Molecules. Read chapters 9 and 10 in Mystery of the Periodic table about Mr. Cavendish and Inflammable air and Chemistry's French Revolution.

James learned about Lavoisier being beheaded by a guillotine during the French Revolution. James and Father learned all about guillotines in the world book encyclopeia. James excitedly called me at work to tell me all about guillotines. It was an interesting conversation to say the least.

History: Read about how the flag of England was planted in the new world and about John Cabot. James did a marathon read of the last few chapters of Diego Columbus. He wanted to finish the book and I unfortunately didn't check to see how many pages it was. He read out loud for an hour!

Next week is supposed to be our off week but I thinking of changing that since James and I are driving to Arizona the week after on the 20th to see grandma and grandpa. We decided to do a road trip, instead of fly, which will be an experience for the two of us. I plan to split the drive and stop halfway, spend the night in Barstow. Perhaps hike around in the desert, see a ghost town, or visit the route 66 museum. We are going to play it by ear.

Advanced Reader Copy of Dark Pursuit

Advanced Reader Copy

How neat is this? I received my very first Advanced Reader Copy today of Dark Pursuit by Brandilyn Collins. Back in September, Callapidder Days mentioned that Zondervan was offering to send out early reads of Dark Pursuit. They were asking for two things in response: each recipient post an honest review on their blog and post a review on at least one online site such as Amazon.com by October 31st.

I sent in an email from the office and just realized a few days ago that I hadn't heard anything. The response probably got lost in the spam filter. I realized October 31st was coming up pretty quickly and emailed again. What a delightful surprise to receive the book in the mail today. Guess what I'll be reading this weekend!!!

Winter's Illusion

Book Cover for Winter Illusion

I am working on the outline for the story I will be writing during NaNaWriMo. Started fooling around with making a book cover and came up with two different ones. Do you like or dislike one or both? What do you think?