Monthly Archives: July 2013

A Knitter’s Dream Garage Sale!! GOODIES!!


Okay, it may be yet another day and the lace shawl is still on my needles but I have a good reason – well, three good reasons. The first being that I am over-thinking this so simple a beginner could do it pattern so much that I keep making mistakes. The second is that I was slaving over my Etsy Store, worrying about selling anything. Ever. The third is that I hit the mother-load of all garage sales today!

We were just driving back from my parent’s house when we saw the garage sale sign. Now normally I am not a garage sale kinda gal, more because I am always afraid to leave my car on the side of the road than anything but something caught my eye. “TREVOR! SPINNING WHEEL!” I screamed and he found a safe place to stow the care and on we went.

Arriving at this sale was like arriving at a divorce court. A married couple, clearly quite angry with one another, were bickering like small children. What I gathered from my eavesdropping (I have now shame) is that she decided to take up knitting about two years ago. When she did she must have spent a fortune on everything she bought – and she bought everything! Drop spindles, fiber, yarn, spinning wheels (yes, wheels), needles and memorabilia for her “craft room”. Then, well, she never touched one bit of it. The husband had simply had enough and just wanted the room back. Thus, friends and neighbors, my goodies!

** My First Ball Winder **

My pretty new ball winder.

My pretty new ball winder.

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It’s an actual Standwood!

My first ball winder cost $2.00 (retail on Amazon is $59.87). I could have cried I was so excited to see this. The two spinning wheels (each costing a mere $15.00) had both sold, but the winder was mine! I learned the hard way that I am going to have to buy a swift, as you can see below, but who cares!

** My First Purchase of Fiber **

I have actually only spun one hank? skein? load? (what the heck to I call a pile of wool?) before so I was hesitant. They were selling drop spindles for $1.00 (I bought another one) and the two sections of wool cost $0.50 cents. FIFTY CENTS!

Fifty Cents! Now...what to do with it?

Fifty Cents! Now…what to do with it?

** Knitting Antiques Anyone? **

These two of these three pieces came out of an old factory in Ohio. The two spindles were from a plant the made wool in Southern Ohio during the first World War. The cradle is an antique she found in a store. You open it up and put your center pull ball in and close the sucker tight, then proceed to hang it for easy access. Total price, $1.00. AWESOME!

What an incredible day, so many good finds! Now I just need to figure out how to spin the fiber into pretty yarn (advice is appreciated) and untangle my newly purchased Cascade yarn. Oh – and price a good swift (also, advice is appreciated!). I am feeling so good, how about some flamingos?

This slideshow requires JavaScript.

Just in case the slideshow doesn’t work – I’ve never tried it before and the pictures are just so fun!

A Fiasco at the Zoo & Oh Crap! FROGGING!


When I get stressed out I knit – I know, I know, big surprise there. I turn to knitting as a way to calm my mind, I just should have figured out that a project that requires my full attention was not the best way to go.

Frogging over 2,000 Stitches. *SIGH*

Frogging over 2,000 Stitches. *SIGH*

I was so intent on blocking the trip to the zoo (more on that later) from my mind that I was solely focused on finishing my lace shawl. The problem, as you can see above, is that when you aren’t paying attention you end up screwing up 10 whole rows and over 2,000 stitches. To think it had been going so well….

It is a pleasure to inform you now that after two hours, and a lot of cursing, the shawl is back on track. I really am hoping to get it finished either tomorrow or Tuesday – but boy oh boy I wanted to finish it today.

*************** ******** ******** *************** 

** The Zoo Fiasco **

What led to this particular frenzy of knitting was a trip to the Columbus Zoo on Friday. It should have been a fun little outing; Trevor, Mom, Gloria and I bundled into the car (despite the heat) and made our way towards furry, fuzzy goodness. It started very well – just look at Trevor and his new best friend.

Everything seemed to be going so well, until my Mom’s first asthma attack.

All things considered it really wasn’t that bad, since her diagnosis with COPD almost 10 years ago we’ve all gotten used to varying degrees of attacks. Two hits on the inhaler, some water and cotton candy and we were on the move again.

We saw polar bears….

Some Blue Mallards….

and baby elephants…..

Things seemed to be going pretty well – until they weren’t.

We were standing in line to get on a ride about dinosaurs of all things. I should say that no one but my mom wanted to do this, but she was like a little kid – so excited to go see the dinosaurs. So we humored her, put away our cameras and stood in line. I didn’t even know anything was wrong until she was grabbing my shirt and pushing through the throngs of people behind us.

By the time we were clear of the crowd her asthma wasn’t going to be easily controlled. Two more hits on the inhaler didn’t seem to damp it down, neither was hot water. I left her in Trevor and Gloria’s care and ran to some poor kid selling ice cream to see if he could get me a medic cart. I scared the hell out of this kid, but my insistence – as well as my fear that my mom was going to drop dead at the zoo – made me determined to get what was needed.

He radioed the cart and I returned to where my family was perched on a bench. I should have been freaking out when I saw here EpiPen but oddly enough I am always calm in stressful situations. It’s usually only after that my Panic Monster and I get reacquainted. She was holding it in her fist, shaking from tears and adrenaline released from four monster hits on her inhaler in less than two hours. All she could keep saying was “I want to go home”.

By the time the cart there all I wanted to do was go home too, unfortunately the cart held 3 and us being 4 I had to run behind the cart. This isn’t usually a big deal but my shoes were not fit for running and after about 35 minutes of this (the cart was kind enough to take us to the care) my shoes were full of blood.

My mom is fine – physically she is fine, mentally is another story. It breaks her a little every time her asthma takes something else away from here, and it has been doing that pretty steadily for the past 10 years. So, to work out the frustration of knowing my mom is mortal I temporarily ruined my lace shawl.

Silver linings right? The trip was great (except for the asthma). The shawl is going great (except for the marathon session of frogging). My mom is better (for now) and life keeps going.

Ahh, it feel ridiculously good to get that off my chest. As a reward friends and neighbors, how about a few more photos? You’ve earned it! 🙂

Stitch Patterns Weeks 18 & 19


It seems that since this month has begun I have been trying to play catchup, every single day. I cannot believe it is Sunday and I am JUST getting around to posting not one, but two weeks worth of my great-grandmother’s stitch patterns. Well better late than never I suppose.

So, friends and neighbors, with no further adieu I present the stitch patterns for weeks 18 and 19!

** Week 18 – The Tulle Stitch **

The Tulle Stitch

The Tulle Stitch

  • Needles: Size 5 US (3.75mm)
  • Yarn: Bernat 100% Cotton in Blue
  • Stitches: Multiple of 2 + 1 Stitch -or- ×2+1 ( I also alway do at least 1 stitch garter on either edge)

kythkek – Row 1: *K1, yarn forward, K1*. Repeat till last stitch, K1 (Okay. So “yth” for you non-veteran readers means “yarn towards heart” in my great-grandmothers scrawl. As for the “e” that popped up – after a little investigating it meant “end”).

pand p3-1 – Row 2: P1, *P3, slip 1st stitch of these 3 over other 2stitches*; repeat to end. ( I am going to beg mercy at giving up after 4 frogs trying to figure this out. I turned to a stitch pattern book from the library – which is also where I found the name of the stitch. I mean, come on! Who could figure out what “p3-1” meant!)

k1an kythkRow 3: K1, *K1, yarn forward, K1*; repeat to end. (I had already decoded this before turing to the stitch book – thank you very much ;))

p3-1ep – Row 4: *P3, slip 1st stitch over second 2 stitches*; repeat to last stitch, P1 (Again, the book reaffirmed what I (might) have figured out – but it was still nice to know that I would be giving you a readable pattern).

So for fun (more my fun than yours I suppose) here are the unedited photos….

and here are the fun, edited ones…..

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ONWARD!

** Stitch Pattern Week 19 – Horizontal Weaving / The Wave **

The Wave Stitch (or Horizontal Weaving).

The Wave Stitch (or Horizontal Weaving).

The real pattern is called horizontal weaving (thank you LYS!) but under her notations it was called the wave. She actually made a baby blanked out of this pattern – it was adorable!

  • Needles: Size 5US (3.75mm)
  • Yarn: Bernat 100% Cotton in Blue
  • Stitches: Multiples of 3’s + 1 stitch -or- ×3+1st.

k – Row 1: Knit all stitches (*JUMPING* *CLAPPING* *GIGGLING*! It is like Christmas morning to find a pattern that has a no-brainer row).

kskip2pythk – Row 2: K1 *Slip 2 stitches purl wise (with yarn in back), K1*; Repeat to the end of row (Okay, this was a head scratcher to be sure. If you are “skipping” then you must be slipping…right? RIGHT! Moving right alone to “yarn towards heart” and your home free!).

Again…unedited….

and the far sharper (both literally and figuratively) edited ones….

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Since I took the photos with my Canon instead of just my iPod I thought it might be fun to see the difference in the unedited vs. the edited photos. It gives me a little more perspective on what I can accomplish with a little bit of touching up. It also lets me play with filters – which is always fun!

Hope you’ve enjoyed this weeks installment and I wonder, friends and neighbors, which pattern do you like better?

Last Night I Dreamt of Ruffled Scarves Again…


So with – nope not gonna tell you how many of these things I have made – ruffle scarves under my belt I can finally say that all the ruffle yarn has been stash busted! Of course, I think there is actually more hiding in the bowels of my stash somewhere, a gift from someone who didn’t know what a pain it is to work with. The scarves are fun, frilly, ruffley goodness though.

Friends and neighbors, let’s go look at some pictures courtesy of Flickr, Instagram, Phototoaster Photoshop and of course my trusty Canon!!

** Monotone Ruffles **

9366397153_4fd24698f0_zThis is, of course, the ruffle that started it all. A gift from a friend that turned into something that reminds me of The Great Gatsby a bit. I do love how this stupid  scarf looks.

It is so airy and flow-y, feminine and girly, delicate and gentle. Basically, it is a bad ass scarf.

If it sells, I will gladly make as many of these as needed – but I just doesn’t feel the same way I do when I am knitting. Time will tell!

** OSU Buckeye Ruffle Scarf – Shades of Gray, Red, Black and White **

9369215040_5941a2ab7e_cAfter the first ruffle scarf in monotone colors were made, I received a lot of questions from fellow Buckeyes about whether or not this could be done in our football teams colors. We bleed scarlet and gray here in the Buckeye State and everyone want to wear the colors with pride – at home, tailgating or at the game. It’s like a state law.

So after visiting a few more yarn shops I found this beauty waiting to come home with me. I can’t say I was super excited about working with this yarn again (it doesn’t really feel like knitting – more like unraveling a ball an errant yarn) but the idea is to bring people into the shop right?

After a few curse words mumbled under my breath I gathered some momentum and pumped out a few of these bad boys. Football season is not all that far away – gnarled fingers crossed!

Two Firsts for Me!


When I am bummed out about my hand I watch movie trailers – it takes me to my happy place which is a very, very good thing. The Wolves of Wall Street Trailer is my new favorite – I am literally vibrating with anticipation to see this movie. Enjoy the GIF. Enjoy the Trailer. Enjoy your day because there is a lot going down tomorrow.

Not really, just loads of photos if Flickr ever comes back up!

Two Attempts at Book Reviews


There will be more pictures soon of all the goodies I have been knitting – I have been far more productive than normal here recently. I need to take pictures and update my Etsy store, but all I really want to do is knit….and read.

I am horrible at book reviews. Second only to reading books I love to discuss them, which typically means I am giving away the ending, spoiling it for readers everywhere. I have been pondering how to go about this weakness, how I can give you a glimpse of what enthralled me with the book without ruining the story? So, friends and neighbors, here it goes.

** Double Feature by Owen King **

You may enjoy this book if the following scenarios tickle your curiosity.10001

  • Seeing a movie where a male satyr having sex with a tree.
  • A pyromaniac ruining your life one match at a time.
  • A father that is way worse than your own (or at least I hope).
  • A sister who maces people at random.
  •  The quirks of actors and swords.
  • Anything involving fake noses or Orson Welles.
  • A complicated family life that is both sweet, annoying, heartbreaking and hysterical.
  • Fears of being crushed to death by a very large man’s thighs.
  • My Rating: 3.5 out of 5 Stars

Okay, hopefully I still have your attention and haven’t ruined anything for you yet. Let’s try another shall we?

** The Execution of Noa P. Singleton **

Here I am going to lay out what I really liked about the book.

The Execution of Noa P. Singleton

The Execution of Noa P. Singleton

  • The writing, while a bit stunted and jumbled, still propelled me to continue on. Lackluster writing usually puts me off a novel, but it was easier to overlook because I wanted to see what would happen next.
  • At some point in the novel I wanted to 1) smack 2) hug 3) cry for and 4) condemn each and every character.
  • The plot development is slow, but in a really delicious manner. There is no rush, which (for me) was how I imagine sitting on death row would be like. Why rush to the end when you know it’s coming?
  • While I didn’t particularly “like” any of the characters I was still emotionally invested in them. Again, this is something rare for me.
  • While the last few chapters were both equally surprising and slightly odd – I didn’t mind it. It seemed to fit with what the author was trying to get around – in a very roundabout way.
  • My Rating: 3.5 out of 5 Stars.

***********  ***********  ***********  ***********

So there it is. I have been reading more and more blogs that review books since the Read-a-Thon only to find myself envious of their ability to give a complete and compelling summary without disrupting the elusiveness of the story. I am tying to figure out how to approach review books for this blog – or even if I should be reviewing books on my blog. I love reading more than I love knitting – it has seniority in my life.

So friends and neighbors – honestly – what do you think? Any constructive criticism (or out right criticism) would be great. I want to share my love of reading the way I share my knitting and photography. What could be better? Did you like one style more than another? Should I abandon all hope and stick to knitting? Bring it on – I’m ready! 😉

I’ve Been Real Busy – Promise!


When I think that I haven’t even gotten to read so many of your blog posts the last few days I have to sit and think…why? Well, my needles are steaming so I guess that means I have been keeping pretty busy!

Also, just before we get to picture-y goodness, I have also:

  • Redone my About Page for the Blog.
  • Am getting all the Stitch Patterns into their own drop-down menu on the blog – hopefully I will finish that tonight.
  • Major amounts of photo editing.
  • Updating my Etsy Store with things that most likely won’t sell – I still have hope.

Okay friends and neighbors, now to the pictures!!!

** THE LINK HAT – LONG STRIPED STOCKING HAT **

Right Side

THE LINK LIKE HAT!

So I have made two of these in the past week, one for Sheri whose package never arrive on our swap (UPDATE: I just got an email that her package has finally arrived in Germany!! It only took one and a half months – God Bless the United States Postal Service). So now both hats need to be put up on the store.

** BOBBLES AND LACE AND SLOUCHY HAT GOODNESS **

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So after starting down the road of super adventurous (and time-consuming) knitting, I needed a quick fix. This hat knit up very quickly and has all sorts of yummy bobbles, lace, ribbing, dimension and super fun stuff. I highly recommend it!

** SWEET AS HONEY RIBBED HAT **

9352169645_07e6e80280_zI forgot that I had started making another one of these after the first one – because I gave the first one to a friend. This may be the biggest hurdle in running a business for me, I love giving things away! So when I saw it all lonely at the bottom of my knitting bag I went ahead and finished it.

** THE RUFFLE SCARF FROM HELL – WELL… TWO RUFFLE SCARVES FROM HELL **

Okay, this baby was born from the very sweet gift from a friend. It is Patons Pirouette Yarn and it is pretty when it is finished. Working with it though made me want to punch a wall and pull out my hair. Oh well, the two skeins are gone and I have two scarves to show for it.

I Hate You Ruffle Scarf Yarn....Even Though You Are Beautiful

I Hate You Ruffle Scarf Yarn….Even Though You Are Beautiful

** MY NEW ADVENTURE IN LACE KNITTING!! **

This has been the project taking up the majority of my time here lately, my very first attempt into lace knitting! I am so excited….like a kid at Christmas. The lace yarn (Patons again) was found at the bottom of my yarn stash so I just dug in. Size 3US circular needles and a nice, simple pattern for a beginner. I cannot wait to finish my precious!

Humble Beginnings

Humble Beginnings

At About 120 Stitches

At About 120 Stitches

It Keeps Growing!

It Keeps Growing!

Close Up of the Lace. LACE

Close Up of the Lace. LACE

 

Alrighty, that about catches me up I think. I need to go work on my store, organize the pages for the Stitch Patterns a week, need to do the stitch patterns for this week and last week, work on my lace….

Sorry, I got distracted there.

Okay, plan B. I am going to knit then I am going to catch up with all my delicious blogging friends. I’ve missed you and cannot wait to see what you’ve been up to!

 

New Catching Fire Trailer – Better Images of the Shawl!


With all the wonderful designers out there looking into making this shawl – with no still photos – here is a new trailer with a much better view of my knitting lust!

THE PHOTO! Totally NSFW or Small Children :)


Well, there is a solution to the conundrum of the Naughty Picture!

Click at Your Own Risk!

Click at Your Own Risk!

→ Click Here or on the Photo Above To See For Yourselves! ←

The Conundrum of Posting a Very Naughty Photo


Okay friends and neighbors, I am stuck. To post the very funny, very knit-tastic photo (that is also incredibly inappropriate) or not to post.

I will give you some clues to my dilemma.

I am throwing yet another bachelorette party in a few weeks. I am going to go ahead and give myself some props for being an outstanding bachelorette party thrower – I know no bounds. I have no fear of adult super stores, I have an entire box (hiding in my basement so Gloria never sees it) of cupcake, cake, suckers and truffle molds that are very appropriate for that sort of party. I am on good terms with at least two male strip clubs in town, I don’t drink so I can always drive and my emetophobia keeps everyone’s cars clean (I put the drunks in a cab and let them handle it).

Here is the thing. For this party, my friend has asked me to KNIT something for her and the rest of the party goers. I made it last night….it is staring at me from my iPod photo cache demanding to be released.

It is knitting – so there is that. But I try to not even curse on this blog, let alone posting a very naughty photo.

So friends and neighbors, any ideas?

One Lovely Blog Award!


One Lovely Blog Award.

One Lovely Blog Award.

Receiving blogging awards is still such a surprise to me. When I started this blog almost 18 weeks ago I never imagined anyone would read it let alone recognize my existence with an award. This particular lovely came from Movies, Silently. I love her blog, it was in fact one of the first blogs I started reading when I started my blogging adventure. Silent Movies are her specialty, but it doesn’t stop there. She’s cunning, funny, stylish and her posts are always a fantastic read. Seriously, do yourself a favor and pop over there – I will wait. 🙂

So, down to the rules of the award.

  • Add the “One Lovely Blog Award” image to your post (Check!)
  • Share seven things about you (Check!)
  • Pass the award on to seven nominees
  • Thank the person who nominated you and add a short blurb about them.
  • Inform the nominees by posting on their blogs 

 * * * * * * * * * * * * * *  * * * * * * * * * * * * * *   * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

** So, 7 new (and supposedly interesting things about myself) **

  1. I met the love of my life when I was 17 years old…on a blind date. We both worked for the same chain of movie theaters and a friend thought it would be the perfect set-up to get Trevor to run into her arms (we really are that different, and difficult ;)). Eight months later we were engaged!
  2. When we moved into our condo in 2004 our next door neighbors were meth addicts. These were the scariest moments of my life! When their cat wandered into our yard with infected wounds from being punctured by needles Trevor and I gave them two choices; 1) Give us that cat and go away or 2) we are going to call the cops and have you arrested. Fatty never liked us, but I think we gave him the best (and last) 3 years of his life.
  3. It has become a good luck/ family tradition for the men in the family to get heat stroke on their wedding night. My grandfather, my dad and my husband were all incapacitated on their wedding night. We got home, I put my husband to bed with Advil and Gatorade and went downstairs and ate the white chocolate fondue pot he had prepared 😉
  4. When I was I was working at the hospital in college, I was going through the ER to get to my car and saw a man self-canabalizing. That’s right friends and neighbors, he was eating his own fingers. I dutifully told the nurse what was happening in the hallway and the proceeded to go get my own lunch.
  5. In high school I was running after my crush after a concert. Being that I was in high heels and a skirt (and horribly clumsy) my shoe got stuck in-between the sidewalk and the grass propelling me, and my skirt, forward. After recovering from my humiliation ( it didn’t take long, stupid crap like this happens to me all the time) we realized the foot was in fact very broken. On the plus side, my crush carried me to the car, ER and home. Then made a joke to carry me around all the time. I was elated – and that feeling never changed, even after I found out he had a crush on my brother.
  6. My all time favorite band is The Smiths. You may think it’s music to wallow in, but I love it!
  7. I have an unnatural love for horror movies. After my OCD made normal things in life seem terrifying, watching a horror movie – and being scared and something you SHOULD be scared at – makes sense. There is not a lot I haven’t seen – and Martyrs is the best/worst of them all.

Okay. Done! Now for my nominees!

  1. A World Created – Hannah, until we started conversing I thought that all internet friendships were supposed to be creep and weird. Now I know that a true bond can be created out of kindness and passion for your craft. Every post seems better than the last.
  2. Traveling the world….and much more – Your blog shows your deft hand with your craft and a sharp wit that makes your posts a pleasure to read. Bonus, you were the first person to really help me make the Katniss Shawl for my niece – I am indebted to you!
  3. Lottieknits – You know why you are getting this, your kindness knows no bounds. For the rest of you – go read this blog! It has snippets of everything you would ever want to read about. It has been a constant source of inspiration to me.
  4. lollyknits – Just another blogger that I desperately wish was my next door neighbor. Decisive and funny, her posts are a joy to read. Her pictures make me jealous (this is a good thing and a compliment) and again – another kind soul that is always willing to lend a hand.
  5. MonsterYarns – Although it seems like everyone already knows this blog, I am going to suggest you quit reading mine and go straight over yonder to MonsterYarns. The post is fabulous, the writing superb! Not to mention that some of the comments I have received from this blogger are hilarious!
  6. Rob’s Surf Report – A great writer, blogger and friend. There is always something to heavily consider after reading his posts – and not commenting doesn’t feel like an option. I am inspired by the free way he writes and voices his opinions.
  7. Creative Writing with the Crimson League – This is a newer blog (for me) that I’ve started following. Do you have a blog that you just cannot skip, even if you’ve been up for 20 hours? If not – head over, you shant be disappointed!

Alright friends and neighbors, two posts in one day again but totally worth it. Signing off for a bit and I will see you tomorrow….unless something else decides to flood. 🙂

Mouth Watering ♥ Free Recipes ♥


So with the party under my belt I am able to relax and bask in the glory of a job well done. Well, that and now I can knit without guilt!

I thought I would share some of the recipes with you – a first for this particular blogger. The pictures are not mine, just thought I would reiterate that for you. I think you can get a better picture (pun intended) of how the food would look if there is a nice visual aid.

I am going to set up the recipes so the ingredients are in Blue because, well because I feel like it.So friends and neighbors, ready get let me get your mouth watering? 🙂

Recipe List – Feel Free to Skip Around as You Please

  • Key Lime Cupcakes
  • Truffles
  • Artichoke Bruschetta
  • Italian Panzanella
  • Sausage- Stuffed Mushrooms
  • Very, Very Teriyaki Chicken

** Key Lime Cupcakes – Courtesy of Patty Folk (MY Mommy-in-Law **

Courtesy of Bon Appetite Magazine.

Courtesy of Bon Appetite Magazine.

→ Ingredients For Cupcakes ←

  • 1 cup of Flour
  • 1 teaspoon Baking Powder
  • 1/8 teaspoon Salt
  • 6 tablespoons Unsalted Butter – Softened
  • 1 large Egg
  • 1/2 cup + 2 tablespoons of Granulated Sugar
  • 1/4 cup Key Lime Juice

♥ In a medium bowl, combine Butter and Sugar. Whip with mixer until creamed. Add Egg and blend throughly.

♥ In a separate bowl combine all dry ingredients: Flour, Baking Powder and Salt.  Add 1/2 of the dry ingredients into the wet mixture, then all the Key Lime Juice. Blend until throughly incorporated – then add the remaining dry mixture and blend till smooth.

♥ Spoon into mini cupcake liners.

♥ Bake at 350°F for 17 minutes. Cool in pans or (preferably) wire racks until cool.

→ Ingredients for Frosting ←

  • 2 cups Confectioners Sugar
  • 4 tablespoons of Unsalted Butter – Softened
  • Key Lime Juice to Taste

♥ Blend all ingredients until spreadable consistency – Only frost cupcakes when they are completely cool. Place in refrigerator until ready to serve.

♥ Makes about 24 Mini Cupcakes ♥

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** Super Simple Truffles – Courtesy of Patty Folk **

Courtesy of Bon Appetite Magazine.

Courtesy of Bon Appetite Magazine.

→ Ingredients for Truffles and Dips for Truffles ←

  • 2 and 1/2 pkg. (20 squares) Baker’s Semi-Sweet Chocolate
  • 1 pkg. Philadelphia Cream Cheese – softened
  • Espresso Powder
  • Coco Powder

♥ Melt 8 Chocolate Squares in do double broiler. In mixer, beat softened Cream Cheese until creamy. Blend in completely melted chocolate and refrigerate until firm.

♥ Once firm, shape into 36 small balls. Place on waxed/parchment paper in a covered pan. Refrigerate until firm.

♥ Melt remaining 12 Chocolate Squares.  Taking the firm balls (haha, sorry, moving on) use a toothpick to swirl in chocolate. Garnish with Espresso Powder, Coco Powder, both or neither (you can add anything to this really, they’re that good).

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * 

** Artichoke Bruschetta – Courtesy of Murfield Country Club **

→ Ingredients ←

  • 1 can of Artichoke Hearts – drained, patted dry and roughly chopped
  • 1/2 cup grated Romano or Parmesan Cheese (I use both)
  • 1/3 cup Red Onion – finely chopped
  • 5-6 tablespoons Mayonnaise
  • 16″ French Bread Baguette – Cut into 1/3″ rounds ( I usually make my own bread because that’s how I roll, but if you get to the bakery the day of they are better quality than the night before).
  • 1/4 cup Olive Oil

♥  Chop Red Onion and Artichoke Hearts. Combine in a bowl with Cheese. Mix in enough Mayonnaise to form a thick spread. ( I typically don’t use as much mayo as they suggest – I prefer olive oil myself).

♥ Preheat the broiler. Arrange sliced Bread on a baking sheet and brush with Olive Oil. Broil until toasted (this is about 2 minutes). Turn the bread to the other side and repeat.

♥ Top the toasted bread with artichoke spread on baking sheet and to with a bit more Cheese. Broil until the spread is heated throughly and begins to brown – again, about 2 minutes.

♥ Makes 16 ♥

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** Italian Panzanella – Courtesy of Mary Rose Sovine (my Grandmother) **

Courtesy of whatsgabycooking.com

Courtesy of whatsgabycooking.com

→ Ingredients ←

  • 1/4 cup Red Wine Vinegar
  • 1/4 cup Olive Oil
  • Coarse Salt
  • Fresh Cracked Pepper
  • 1 can Cannellini Beans – rinsed and drained
  • 1 loaf of Country Bread – cubed
  • 1 pound Cherry Tomatos – halved
  • 2 English Cucumbers – cut into bite size chunks
  • 1/4 Red Onion – very thinly sliced (mandolins work great for this)
  • 4 ounces Hard Aged Provolone Cheese – coarsely chopped
  • 1/4 cup Fresh Basil – rough chop

♥ In a mixing bowl, whisk Vinegar and Oil, season with Salt and Pepper.

♥ Add Beans, Bread, Tomatoes, Cucumbers, Onion and Cheese.  Add dressing and toss to combine (remember, this is a rustic Italian dish so don’t freak). Cover and refrigerate at least 2 hours (and up to 8 hours).  Just before serving top with Basil.

♥ Serves 8 ♥

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * 

** Sausage- Stuffed Mushrooms – Courtesy of My Brother **

→ Ingredients ←

  • 2 tablespoons Unsalted Butter
  • 40 Mushrooms – stems removed
  • 1/2 pound Sweet Italian Sausage
  • 1/4 cup Chopped Sweet Onion
  • 2 cloves Garlic – minced
  • 1/2 cup Dry Italian Bread Crumbs
  • 1/2 cup Parmesan Cheese – grated
  • 1/3 cup Shredded Mozzarella Cheese
  • 1 teaspoon Italian Seasoning 
  • 1 teaspoon Dried Parsley 

♥ Preheat oven to 325°F. Grease baking sheet.

♥ Melt Butter in a large skillet over medium heat; cook and stir Mushrooms in butter until soft (they will ben easily when pinched – 5 to 7 minutes). Transfer Mushrooms to plate, allow to cool and dry.

♥ In another skillet, heat to a medium high heat/ cook and stir Sausage, Onion and Garlic until meat is throughly cooked and crumbly. Drain grease.

♥ After mixture is drained, transfer to a large mixing blow and stir in Bread Crumbs, Parmesan Cheese, Mozzarella Cheese, Italian Seasoning and Parsley.

♥ Arrange Mushrooms on a sheet pan / grill pan. Fill (to almost overflowing) with mixture inside the caps.

♥ Bake in oven until cheese is melted and super delicious. This takes about 30 minutes – just watch your oven.

♥ Serves 10 ♥

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * 

** Very, Very Teriyaki Chicken  – Courtesy of My Genius Hubby**

Best. Marinade. Ever.

Best. Marinade. Ever.

→ Ingredients ←

  • Chicken
  • Very, Very Teriyaki Marinade and Sauce

♥ Going super simple for this recipe. Buy Chicken. Marinate chicken in Very, Very Teriyaki for at least 4 hours (up to 24 hours).

♥ My rule of thumb with this marinade is for every pound of chicken you need 1/2 of a jar of marinade – if you are grilling. When grilling, reserve the other half of the jar for basting and cook over a low heat. The marinades ginger and natural sugar will turn into this fantastic glaze.

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * 

This is the majority of what we made for the party and most assuredly my favorites. I hope you enjoy this – since I have never tried recipes on this blog before we shall see how it goes. I do have one more thing to ask if you’ve managed to get to the bottom of this epic post –

What’s your favorite recipe friends and neighbors?

The 30th Anniversary Party! LOADS OF PHOTOS!


Thank heavens this is over! The party went fantastically despite the downpour that kept most of us in the house – this may also have been a blessing considering it was 108 degrees out. The flowers – both knitted and planted – done! The blank index cards from the guests – done! The two days of almost 17 hours of cooking – DONE!

I should have taken more pictures, but when the weather turned and the kitchen demanded constant attention I got a bit sidetracked. Despite my negligence, I want to show you what we’ve done.

By the way, I cannot wait to get caught back up with my blogging friends and neighbors without feeling guilty again!

Okay, let’s see if I can organize these is a way that makes the most sense…hope you enjoy!

** Edited Photos **

 ** Knitted Flowers **

** The Foodie Goodness! **

I could just kick myself for not taking pictures of any of the cooked food! I got so busy trying not to set anything on fire that I just forgot.

I thought I would include our menu, and maybe on a later post I will add recipes because it was delicious!

** The Menu **

  • Veggie Tray – Broccoli, Cauliflower, Carrots, Stop-Light Pepper Assortment, Cherry Tomato and Celery.
  • Fruit Trays – Cantaloupe, Grapes, Raspberries, Blueberries, Blackberries and Watermelon.
  • Panzanella Salad
  • Stuffed Mushrooms
  • Teriyaki Chicken Skewers
  • Fresh Basil, Mozzarella and Cherry Tomato Skewers
  • Artichoke Bruschetta 
  • Almond Cake with Buttercream Frosting
  • Key Lime Cupcakes
  • Chocolate Truffles – Cocoa Dusted, Espresso Dusted and Plain

I know I am forgetting something – but my brain is still pretty fried. I will go through everything when I do the post with the recipes!

** Balloons ** 

And last but not in the least Last….

** The Flowers we Planted **

** Then There are the Friends and Neighbors…and Family! **

That be all she wrote friends and neighbors!

I do believe I am going to go take a nap before I attempt to read any blogs, otherwise my comments are going to be as jumbled as my mind is at the moment – but I cannot wait.

Up For a Quickie?


A quickie post you dirty, dirty minded bloggers! I had wanted to wait to share this with you when it was fully completed, but the flood carried away my progress and I am dying to show you what I have recently (kinda) crossed off my Knitting Bucket List (or my KBL if you wish:)). So here it is friends and neighbors, my new knitting obsession!

9129430635_3a40828959_zFirst things first, I casted on and held my breath.

9129815831_674080f6b0_zWhen the cuff was complete – I did a happy dance. I may have had to start a few times and frog a few rows, but it was so worth it to see something on those DPNs.

9171638462_7987ae80d5_zThen it was time to knit for eight inches. Oh the sheer delight in seeing the pattern emerge!

9172710988_c74d372870_zI was nervous about making the heel because I had never done it. It was soo much easier than I expected!

9171420475_38b11d6837_zNow was the time to shape the heel. Oh, the feeling of seeing something that looked a bit like a sock. Glorious!

9172814660_8cdeaae0fa_zAfter shaping the heel it was time to shape the instep. Guys….it kinda looks like a sock! As you all know after you shape and knit the instep, the only thing left to do is shape the toe.

And then…

AND then….

AND THEN…….

AND THEN!!!!!!!!!

9208301396_8e34490d16_zFriends and neighbors we have a sock! A real sock! Now all that is left is to make its mate!

I’ve got to tell you friends and neighbors, it is a bit like a fairy tale. I’ve (almost) crossed something off my knitting bucket list. It feels so good. Have a great weekend!

 

 

Yarn along – Week 28 – The Hunger Games Cowl and some lace socks


I think we are getting somewhere, this looks incredible! Good God I ♥LOVE♥ the blogging community!

Travelling the world... and much more

Joining Ginny for the Yarn Along, here is what I knitted and read this week: After stumbling about the question on how to possible knit the cowl Katniss wears on one of the posters for the new Hunger Games movie I thought I just might come up with a pattern. Hunger-Games-Cowl-and-The-Culture-of-Knitting

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Two for One Special! Stitch Patterns for Week’s 16 & 17


Hello friends and neighbors. Before I get started I just want to apologize for just now getting back to all your wonderful comments – I fear I am being a bit neglectful of my blog lately. With the unplanned vacation, even more unplanned flood and my Mom and Dad’s 30th anniversary party I am being pulled in a million directions. This being said, as soon as I get this post up I am going to spend some quality time with you and your posts. Just please don’t lose hope, the party is over on the 16th and things should be back to normal by then.

Okay, enough begging for your patience (by the way, pretty please?!). It is time to see what GG has been doing to me these past two weeks. So, with no further adieu we have stitch patterns for week 16 and 17! Enjoy!

♥ Week 16 – Let’s Call it the Picnic Blanket Stitch 

Full Size at an Angle.

Full Size at an Angle.

Something I have noticed about my great-grandmother is that she dealt almost entirely with knit and purl stitches. There are the occasional cables, but not many. I have to say this is giving me a new appreciation of the basics. Now, let’s see about this pattern shall we?

Needles: Size 5 US (3.75mm)
Yarn: Bernat 100% Cotton in Coral
Stitches: (I think, this is guess-work here) Multiple of 5+4 stitches. I also do 2 stitches on each             edge so it’ll lay straight.

  • 1k – Row 1: Knit (Gotcha, good good!)
  • 2p4and kp4 – Row 2: P4, *K1, P4* rep. till end of row (Not sure I’ve seen the “and” before, so this ended up getting frogged once before I got it).
  • 4p4k1p4 : Row 4: *P4, K1, P4* rep till end (Um…guys? What happened to the rest of the rows?)
  • Okay, so this is also where some guess-work and frogging occurred. I figured if she didn’t write it then it had to be knit. If there was a change on row 4 then there would have to be two rows knit after it for symmetry (I tried 5 rows but it looked wonky). So this is the actual pattern down yonder ↓ in a pretty blue color.
  • Row 1, 3, 5 and 6: Knit
  • Row 2: P4, *K1, P4* rep. till end of row.
  • Row 4: *P4, K1, P4* rep till end of row.

 

This pattern was a bit like playing a knitting detective, which makes me feel (goofily) like a knitting super hero. Goofy? Oh, yes. Definitely. I just wondered if she only knitted it once or she just knew that it had to be a repeat of 6 rows. So many unanswered questions. Anyway, ONWARD!

 ♥♥ Stitch Pattern Week 17 – The…Morse Code Stitch? 

Full On

Full On

– Needles – Size 5US (3.75mm)
– Yarn – Bernat 100% Cotton in Coral
– Stitches – Multiple of 10 + 4 stitches  (Totally sure about this one :)) 8 row repeat.

  • 1k – Row 1: Knit
  • p – Row 2: Purl (Okay, no more numbers – she has a way doesn’t she?)
  • 1 – Row 3: Knit (Really? Somewhere this old bag is laughing at me, I just know it!)
  • 4p4 and k6p4 – Row 4: P4, *K6, P4*. Rep. *to* till end of row. (Well, at least the numbers showed up again. How kind!)
  • k – Row 5: Knit (AND there gone again….curious).
  • p – Row 6: Purl
  • k – Row  7: Knit ( I should add here that at least this pattern was written vertically, so at least there was some actual separation of the rows. It is rare in here writing, but it was also written on the back of a doctor’s business card – so maybe it was a space thing).
  • k3k1p4k4 – Row 8: K4, *K1, P4, K5*. Rep. till end of row (Did you notice that the K3 was wrong? Well I sure didn’t…frogged twice before simple math made me feel like a simpleton. As long as the pattern gets done who cares right?).

Well, that’s about all for me tonight folks. Now it is time to catch up with my blogging family – make sure you guys haven’t been up to any shenanigans! One more thing to leave on tonight though…Have you ever tried to get a good picture of you knitting only to be foiled by the light? Well, taking a pair of knitting needles, a hair tie and a pocket light stabbed into the couch might work! Think I am kidding? Well, at least the couch is old! 🙂

Knitting Needles, a Hair Tie and a Pocket Light stabbed into the Couch.

Knitting Needles, a Hair Tie and a Pocket Light stabbed into the Couch.

The Flood


Before I begin the retelling of this story I want to get you in my mindset – why this was so frightening. Trevor. Cannot. Swim.

Something Mild

Something Mild

The vacation was a surprise gift from my mother and father in law, something neither one of us saw coming. After seeing how difficult this year has been for us they wanted to give us the vacation we crave, and what we craved more than anything was the cabin in the woods. This was where my family always escaped to in the summer, the place where Trevor and I went on our honeymoon. This was our happy place.

Luckily, before the sky opened up I remembered to take some photos.

As you can see the cabin we stayed in was built up on the hill, away from the lake. We never thought in our right minds that this was going to be a saving grace.

The first day it rained, but only slightly. It was more like a humid blanked had been draped over us, we couldn’t have cared less. It was our place, and it was our time to be away from phones, computers, work, money and every other care in the world. We listened to music, we danced (I know, so darn sweet it makes my teeth hurt), we cooked, we read, we walked….we did all the things we always did when we came here. This was Friday. By Saturday, things started to change.

By the time we lost power on Saturday we had 5 inches of rain and the lake, a runoff from the river, had risen to engulf what was left of the land between cabins. Our cabin was the highest of them all, and thus suffered the least amount of damage (and no damage to the car). We though this was going to be a great story! We played Scrabble, took a nap and went about preparing to read for 24 hours straight – heaven in our books.

But it just kept raining.

We kept reading, eating fresh fruit and drinking copious amounts of coffee, and we listened to it rain. We came to the decision very early in the morning that it was time to get out.  Well, that just wasn’t going to happen.

road-river

At this point, the Evil Dead was playing over and over in my mind. Trapped in a cabin, no phone and no way to contact our family. We were trapped here – and my husband cannot swim. I will be the first to admit that after I took the photo my Panic Monster reared its ugly head and I had a full-fledged meltdown on the road. Trevor was calming, comforting, and more than anything he was reasonable. We would go back to the cabin and read, waiting for the storm to stop. Ash Caves floods all the time, and the flash floods dissipate in hours due to the great civic engineers that plan for this.

So back to the cabin. The rain never relented its beating on the roof and slowly the pages of our books begin to wilt with moisture. Between the two of us though (I figured I should add this) we finished:

By noon, the poor couple across the lake tried to make a run for it. Their car seemed to disappear into the mud and the water rose very, very quickly. The clawed (yes, they clawed) their way out of the car and back to the cabin. This is when the network of people trapped in the valley went to their canoes and began helping one another. I wish I had taken pictures of this, but truth be told I was so scared of having Trevor in that water that I forgot to breath. With my foot he was adamant I stay inside, so me and my panic attack medication became old friends again.

We traded food, books, movies (some had portable DVD players and laptops that still had batteries) and board games. It wasn’t long after this that the man who owns the property showed up in his boat, ready to get us to the pay phone to call whoever we needed. Trevor took this picture when he made it up and called our parents and my brother respectively.

View from the Phone.

View from the Phone.

As you can see the rain had finally stopped, but the damage was done – we weren’t going anywhere. The gentleman told all of us not to fret – I am going to quote verbatim here:

“Of course I’m not going to charge you! Trying to leave here is as useless as tits on a nun!”.

So we ate marshmallows, read, played massive amounts of Scrabble and waited for either the cabin to go into the water or the water to recede. Finally, the next day the water seemed to be going down at a comical rate, like a giant stuck a straw in the lake and was taking monster gulps. The irrigation systems were back on track, we still had no power but who could care about that! I should thank my Dad for instilling in me the need to 1) Over-pack both clothes and food and 2) have a small, odd fetish for flashlights/lanterns/candles and everything else you could need to see in the dark.

We called home again, this time able to walk more than we paddled and for the first time in days I took a big deep breath. This was still our happy place – some stupid flash flood wasn’t going to take that away from us. When we were finally able to maneuver the car out we thought we were footloose and fancy free.

Ha!

The funniest (or saddest, I am choosing funniest) is that when we hit a hole backing out the trunk popped open and the bag with my knitting and our books when right into the water. I got out of the car and just hollered and laughed, go figure huh? We waded in thigh high water to retrieve what we could (we lost two books and two and a half knitting projects) but who cared? We laughed the whole way home.

Looking back it is already taking on the quality of a good story, a damned good story in my opinion. If all works out, this is what my NANOWriMo novel is going to be this year, there are too many “what if’s?” to ignore the possibility of a great story. As for Trevor and I, we are glad o be home, clean, feed and curled up with Max who refuses to leave our side. All in all, I have to say it was a truly epic anniversary!

 

Rachel Here ;) . . . . . . .I’m Baaack!!!


Hello friends and neighbors, it feels like it has been ages!

Well, as my loving brother and niece have probably told you, are anniversary getaway did not turn out as planned. This is putting it mildly I might add. It was a one surprise after another starting with the fact that my mother and father-in-law rented us a cabin for us to get away. Amazing right? I never would have signed up for the read-a-thon if I didn’t think I was going to be able to finish it, but the cabin in the woods where we spent our honeymoon was calling.

I don’t want to get into too much because a) I am dog tired – it’s a little after 3am here in the Buckeye State and we got home about two hours ago – and b) where does one start to retell this story? If any of you have seen the new Evil Dead, the scene in the rain where the road is washed out – that movie’s got nothing on what we have seen.

Rain Filter Added. Camera Didn't Do It Justice.

Rain Filter Added. Camera Didn’t Do It Justice.

Do I start with the water in the lake rising, eventually coming up under the cabin, which is built on pillars? Do I start with the other cabin dwellers canoeing back and forth between cabins because he lost power and had to share food? Do I start with the kindness of the innkeeper whole paddled us to a pay phone a mile away to call our loved ones?

I am getting too far into this. Need to prioritize a bit. First and foremost

  • Do copious amount of laundry.
  • Buy real food that doesn’t include chips or marshmallows.
  • Convince Max that we weren’t planning on abandoning him.
  • Reply to emails.
  • Go through mail – Mom and Dad’s 30th is less than a week away (oh s%!t).
  • Bake my brother a key lime pie as a thank you.
  • Go back and attempt to convince Max we still love him.
  • Catch up on blogs.
  • See if I can salvage my knitting (that is a story all on it’s own).

After this, I can finally attempt to get things back to normal. Cannot wait to catch back up with y’all and the real world!

Rachel’s Brother Here


Rachel and Trevor just called to tell us they may be longer than expected. The place they were staying flooded and they cannot get out. They were going to come home yesterday but its only gotten worse.
The guy who rents us the cabin knows us so the isn’t charging so they’re basically getting a big LNG free break. My daughter said I needed to blog so here it is, she also says hi.
And fr the record, she and Trevor did make it the whole 24hrs and still have stuff to read. And for Rachel when you get back, pls don’t ask me to go this again.

Rachel’s Brother Here


Trevor has taken my little sister out of town for a surprise for there weddin anniversary, I think it is there 7th. She asked me to post her reading blog but I don’t know how and there’s no service where they are, hope she’s not pissed when she gets back.

She also wanted me to say that she and Trevor will be reading for 24hours straight thus weekend – hope that means something to you guys. Ok, job fulfilled – my gift to my baby sister.

RaT Day #5 – Cover Title Scramble & A Whole Lotta Shakin’ Going On!


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TitleScramble2

So the challenge for today is pretty self explanatory – Love.Life.Read has given us the lists and we are to try to crack 5 for each month. I have to say that my OCD driven mind is SO PLEASED with this challenge – this type of puzzle is right in my wheel house! Do I have it in me to figure it out? Well, lets give it a whirl shall we?

May Titles:

  1.  hte   h5t   vewa – The 5th Wave ( By Rick Yancey)
  2.  eht   scetrsahnen – The Enchantress (Michael Scott)
  3. ginwre – Winger (Smith Andrew and Sam Bosma)
  4.  sujt   neo   skis – Just One Kiss (By Susan Mallery)
  5. yan   shduesc  lwil   od – Any Duchess Will Do (By Tessa Dare)
  6.  ti   dha   ot   eb    uyo – It Had To By You (Jill Shalvis)
  7. tols  dan   dfnuo – Lost and Found (Nicole Williams)
  8.  het   yelbon  gnki – The Boleyn King ( Laura Andersen)
  9.  neoc  noup   a   niprec – Once Upon a Prince ( Rachel Hauck)
June Titles:
  1. het   nomo   dan  remo  – The Moon and More (Sarah Dessen)
  2. egies  dna   ormts – Siege and Storm (Leigh Bardugo)
  3. rtas    dsceur  – Star Cursed (Jessica Spotswood)
  4. teswe  lsat   ira  – Sweet Salt Air (Barbara Belinsky)
  5. het   crenwmeo – The Newcomer (Robyn Carr)
  6. veorfre   oto   rfa – Forever too Far (Abbi Glines)
  7. het  miatng   fo  deyrr  uanacvhga – The Taming of Ryder Cavanaugh (Stephanie Laurens)
  8. wot  fo  a  dnki – Two of a Kind (Susan Mallery)
  9. neo   etswe  deri – One Sweet Ride (Jaci Burton)
  10. hwta  hte   kedu   sesdeir – What the Duke Desires (Sabrina Jeffries)
  11. 11) kifagn   ti – Faking It (Cora Carmack)
July Titles:
 

1) fi   het  ohes   tisf  – If the Shoe Fits (Megan Mulry)
2) eth   eegd   fo  vnere – The Edge of Never (J. A. Redmerski)
3) rfits  gisht   a   veonl  – First Sight: a Novel (Danielle Steel)
4) utre   lvoe  – True Love (Jude Deveraux)
5) ehtre   tletil   rdswo –  Three Little Words (Susan Mallery)
6) eht   gniht  si  velia – The Night is Alive (Heather Graham)
7) feprcte  gifln  – Perfect Fling (Carly Phillips)
8) scoeh  hte   gronw   ugy   veag   imh  het  gwonr  gefrni –  Chose the Wrong Guy Gave Him the Wrong Finger (Beth Harbison)
9) meoh  ot   kewihsy   kecre – Home to Whiskey Creek (Brenda Novak)

August Titles:
  1.  lafl   fo   veif – Fall of Five (Pittacus Lore)
  2. wrnco    fo    gdminhit – Crown of Midnight (Sarah J. Maas)
  3. hte   desah  fo  het   onom – The Shade of the Moon (Susan Beth Pfeffer)
  4. sero  bahrro   ni  mlobo – Rose Harbor in Bloom (Debbie Macomber)
  5. eht   rohe – The Hero (Robyn Carr)
  6. gib   ysk diwengd  – Big Sky Wedding (Linda Lael Miller)
  7. yatacasw  veoc  a  ltehrse  yab   venlo – Castaway Cove: A Shelter Bay Novel (JoAnn Ross)
  8. siht   rilg   a   veonl  – This Girl: a Novel (Colleen Hoover)
  9. mtetapinto – Temptation (Sherryl Woods)

Yes, I did all of them…the Panic Monster insisted that I finish what I started. I should also mention that I have never heard of a single one of these books….how out of the loop am I?

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * 

 ** Whole Lotta Shakin’ Goin On **

Let’s do book shimmies! We made it through the week-long part of the read-a-thon!!! Congratulate yourself and your new bookish friends on their progress so far. Did you get as much read as you wanted to so far? Have you changed your goals for the 24-hr marathon read?
Despite what feels like doing loads of reading, I haven’t finished nearly as many books as I thought I would. So far I have finished:

And I am currently reading: Double Feature by Owen King

Joe Hill and author Owen King read "Double Feature".

Joe Hill and author Owen King read “Double Feature”.

So have I changed my plans for the 24 hour RaT? Not so much. I am going to read for a whole 24 hours, but I don’t want to feel pushed to put up big numbers. It doesn’t really matter how many books I read, just that I get to put aside time to catch up on all the reading that seems to have fallen by the wayside (or is buried under yarn). Either way I am very excited to participate – and also to see if I can sit still and read for 24 straight hours!

Read-A-Thon Day #4 – Book Spine Poetry & Tears on My Pillow


SummerLovinBadge3_zps9c4006b6

SpinePoetry2Okay Dokey folks, time for some book spine poetry brought to you by Oh, Chrys!! I thought about going through my library and amassing this amazing poem…then I decided that would feel like cheating. As my Summer Reading List is always evolving – based on what we get from the library primarily – I tried to do the best with the actual books on my list. So, as sad as this may be (much like my real poetry, which is why I would never share it) here is my Read-A-Thon Book Spine Poetry Challenge!

Delirium in the woods,

Gulp.

The shinning girls double feature,

The good nurse.

Wow, that was painful! Hope you’ll stay with me through the second part of this post after that atrocity! Just trying to stay authentic, that’s how I roll! 🙂

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* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

›››› Tears on My Pillow ‹

  • The Girl in the Green Raincoat

    The Girl in the Green Raincoat

    Author: Laura Lippman

  • Style: Quality Paperback
  • Genre: Mystery/Thriller/Suspense
  • Length: 158 pages
  • ISBN: 978-0-06-193836-8
  • Year: 2008
  • Publisher: Morrow
  • Rating: 3.5/5 Stars

Share a quote from your current read or tell us about a book that really pulled on your heart strings. What was it about that book/quote that made you cry?

She knew what it was like to fight for her own life, but this had been different. She was defending her daughter. Now she could only hope that she hadn’t killed her in the process.

Page 147

Obviously this quote was at the end of the book just by looking at the page number. I had invested hours of my time becoming immersed in this story – invested in the characters. Laura Lippman’s Tess Monaghan novels are of course part of a series, so this book brought me back to characters I have followed for years. I have been following Tess through all sorts of painful and dangerous shenanigans in Baltimore, so when this novella came out after being published in The New York Times Magazine I jumped on it.

In this book, my Tess – after years of rejecting the idea of settling down – is seven months pregnant and on bed rest. Firstly, I was amazed that Lippman went this direction with the character, as a private detective a baby just didn’t seem to fit. I went in a bit weary but Lippman didn’t disappoint me because Tess was as wary of it as I was!

This quote pulled at my heartstrings and indeed made me tear up because I understood, at a very personal level, the idea of protecting your unborn child no matter the consequences. She was so worried about becoming a mother, her lack of motherly instinct, but when the time came it just kicked in. I’ve been told that is how it really is when you have a child. We have never gotten to the baby part, and I was holding my breath to see if Tess did. Want to find out if she got there? Well…READ THE BOOK!

Read-a-Thon Day #3 – Look at Me, I’m Sandra Dee!


Hello again friends and neighbors! I am really sorry to be doing this whole two posts a day thing but so much love and effort has been put into this read-a-thon that I think they deserve their own posts. I hope you enjoy this one as much as I did!

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** Look At Me, I’m Sandra Dee! Participation Post **

Introduce us to your favorite fictional female – What does she look like? Is there an actress that you think of when you think of the character? Is she tough or timid? You could do a mock interview with your character, or create a bio/resume for her.

With so many strong female character’s out there, how can I choose just one? Well, I can because I have to for the purpose of this post I suppose – so let’s see.

I think my all time favorite female fictional character (wow, try saying that one 5 times quickly) would be Frannie Goldsmith from Stephen King’s The Stand. I know I talk about this book all the time but I just love it! This is a collection of completely amazing characters facing the most horrific situations – good or bad they flourish in that role, right to the very end.

Frannie is…amazing to me. When I first started to write up how I felt about this character I was being overly dramatic about the whole thing. I was trying to write like a literary critic – which I am not – so I scrapped the whole thing. Instead, I would like to outline for you the reason that I love her as a character.

  • She remains undaunted by the horrible plague that swept the world. While it of course affected her, it was her resilience to take it day by day that I was so impressed with. Frannie did what needed to be done, stiff upper lip, strong willed and determined to keep living.
  • Pre-plague she didn’t want to marry Jess, the boy who got her pregnant. She was young, but old enough to recognize that what she wanted was the baby – not the man.
  • She fell in love with Stu Redman (my favorite male character in the book) in a very non-sensational way. They were thrown together and yes, she felt safer with a man, but she would not settle for Harold or anyone else. She found love in tragedy, and embraced it much the way she would have pre-plague.
  • She had the strength to carry on with a pregnancy that was a 50/50 shot of being doomed. As someone who has had so many reproductive problems – this strength was startling to me. She defended her life and the life of her child right till the end of the story.
  • Even after being confronted with copious amounts of reasons to just give in, she never – ever – did.

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↑ Molly Ringwald in The Stand Miniseries – NOT WHAT I PICTURED! ↑

I have often imagined Frannie in my mind, and these are the actresses that came closest to looking how I pictured her (if you morphed these three together in some way it would be perfect):

Well that about covers my love affair with my favorite female character. I hope you’ve enjoyed (or survived) this post. If you haven’t read The Stand – go read it – seriously! 🙂