Sunday, June 29, 2008

Empire Falls Empire Falls by Richard Russo

My review

rating: 5 of 5 stars
This was an incredible book. It didn't have all the bells & whistles of some great reads, but it was just clearly & precisely written with insights on human thought and desire. About how people in a small community can have so much diversity in themselves that they can experience the same complexities we tend to think a big city holds. The characters were all well developed and the story was very juicy. I enjoyed it from the first page to the last. I look forward to reading more from Richard Russo.

**I have always said I wish there was a rating system for books as there is for movies, but since there is not, I will add my 2 cents. There are some swear words & a brief description of a naughty incident at a frat party & some boyish sexual feelings towards an older woman, but all in all, the book is a might good read.

View all my reviews.

Friday, June 27, 2008

Beach Bag Essentials

It just doesn't sound the same calling it a "Pool Bag", so although we will only be frequenting the "pool" or the "water park", we will refer to our favorite bag as the "Beach Bag". Mine I picked up at Old Navy on clearance which makes it even sweeter. These are just a few of our essentials that are kept in the bag for an easy pickup on our way out the door whenever the whim hits us to take off for some fun in the sun! What's in your "Beach Bag"??

When God Retreats

I have been reading a book called Empire Falls, written by Pulitzer Prize winner, Richard Russo. I don't know what brought me to the book, but I have been quite enjoying it, despite a rather naughty frat party description, the book has been enlightening about human thought, even venturing into religious views and desires of the heart. Today I read something that was so profound to me, I felt I needed to record it in permanent form to further burn it into my mind. I have been fighting off personal demons of a measure I have never really had to fight before and each moment of truth or realization about ways I can overcome my worst fears are very, very precious.

Here is the excerpt from the book: " suggest that while God never abandoned us, neither was He on every occasion equally present, perhaps because His continual presence is what we desire most - that is, to be led away from temptation, away from ourselves. We want Him to be there, ready to receive our call in the moment of our need: lead us not into....Whereas God, for reasons of His own, sometimes chooses to let the machine answer. The Supreme Being is unavailable to come to the phone at this time, but He wants you to know that your call is important to Him. In the meantime, for sins of pride, press one. For avarice, press two...
"When God Retreats" had seemed one of his finer sermons as he'd delivered it to his sleepy early congregation. Exhausted and happy, he could find little fault with it as a personal reflection. That God had trust him to lose and then regain his path had seemed a wise, beneficent gesture."

I too believe that God has to let us go from time to time, mostly when He sees we need it most, to know that we can do some things on our own, only if it is to call on Him.

For those of us with daughters, granddaughters, any growing girl in our life...invest in them to start the change.

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Thrift Store Finds

By now, many of you know I am a thrift store junky! It is so much fun shopping for treasures & great deals. These gold sandals that Isabelle fell in love with - a whole $1.40!!!

The lamp I needed badly for our desk in the office. This fits right in with our older decor from overseas. It was a mere $3.20 & works great!!

I collect pitchers and could not resist this mini one. The picture is not so great, sorry about that. But, I paid $1.80 for this baby.

The frame I am not a fan of, but the painting is really painted, not just a print & that is hard to find! And it's of a cello, one of Mark & I's favorite instruments! I have not decided where to hang it, I might repaint the frame first.

Tell me you had one of these as a kid! I just had to get it for the twins. It brought back such strong childhood memories for me & I snagged this vintage toy for a mere $5.40! Well worth it!

My Review of Ariat Flame Sandals - Crackle Leather (For Women)

Originally submitted at Sierra Trading Post

Closeouts . Ariat's Flame sandals will put some snap and crackle into your summer sandal wardrobe. Nicely cushioned, suede-covered footbeds are made of cork and latex for custom landings. Elastic gore to snug fit Two crackle leather straps Polyurethane outsoles Heel: 2" Medium width Closeout...


By mmlk from army, usa on 6/25/2008


5out of 5

Sizing: Feels true to size

Width: Feels true to width

Pros: Comfortable, Cute, Durable, Stable, Breathable

Best Uses: everywhere

Describe Yourself: Stylish, Casual

These are INSANELY AWESOME sandals. They are stylish, not your ordinary brown or black summer slip ons & I love them! I wish I could get them in more colors. They are so comfortable, unlike other slip ons similar to this style. These are supreme!


Friday, June 20, 2008

Does Anyone Know??

I did not inherit my mother's green thumb, although I did inherit her ficus tree & I just pray I don't kill it! There are more blooms popping up in our yard & I have no idea what kind of flowers they are. Can anyone help??

Simple gifts of love for Father's Day.

Although I was horrible about getting out Father's Day cards to all the special men in my life, I did put together something for the main man in my life, all be it quick and simple. I have been collecting formula cans waiting for a craft I knew would present itself for their use & I think this one turned out really cute & just think of the possibilities with all the craft supplies I have at hand?!?!?!?

Paint the Town!

Every once in a while I can really, really see those gray hairs along my hairline popping up to say, "You're not as young as you used to be!" or "We're here to remind you every single day how you're getting older, " and I'll go out and buy some haircolor because I don't want to spend the money on a professional job although I'm SURE it would turn out much better than my own workings at haircolor. But, it was the night before we were going on a quick family trip for the weekend, so I wanted those gray hairs to be GONE! So, I picked up a box of slightly red haircolor that I thought would be fun for the summer. When I woke up the next morning to plenty of sunshine, I realized when the box said, Paint the Town, it really did mean, PAINT THE TOWN RED!!! I looked like a candy apple! After a couple of days, it calmed down & Mark mentioned it didn't look so bad & I even got a couple of compliments on it throughout the day. Guess I'll keep it for a while!

Tuesday, June 3, 2008

I swear they're "IN" right now!

Bangs, that is. I tried to explain to my husband why I had chosen to increase the amount of bangs I have. I like them for one & two, they're in style right now. I may be over 30 & I may have several children, but it still doesn't keep me from at least attempting to look stylish. The conversation went like this (we're getting ready to leave the house to go run errands as a family - something I love, something he doesn't particularly care for. He says we look like Gypsies, hahahahahaha)

Me: "Hun, do I look okay?"

Mark: "Ask me later," with a silly smirk on his face. I know something is up.

Me: "What is it? My shirt, my shoes?" His face is still scrunched. I know if I hit the right thing, he'll give in. "My hair," getting warmer. "MY BANGS?!?!?"

Mark: "You're in 1994. What are your other options?"

Me: "Are you kidding me?" I've got my hair in a cute ponytail, bangs laid out natural & a little chunky, but I swear they're in style. Just look at this picture of Reese Witherspoon.
OKAY, I admit, I'm not Reese! But, her bangs look good & I was merely attempting to copy them in some form (see anniversary photo in prevoius 10 years post).

Still don't believe me? Check this link. He's lucky I'm not doing the blue eyeliner or watercolor dresses!!!!

So, I go into the bathroom. I wisp them to the side, make a little part & flatten them down some more.

Me: "There! That better?"

Mark: "You've hit 1998. It's better."

Whatever! If I like it, what do I care what he thinks? He still has to sleep with me every night, eat the meals I cook & say Yes Dear to stay out of trouble. I love that he tries to be honest. In 1998, I was 21 & feeling smokin' hot & on top of the world & totally in love. I may not be 21. I may not be smokin' hot & I'm not really on top of the world anymore, but I am still totally in love. I'll take 1998. Thanks babe.

Mommy doesn't want to share.

The thing about Freschetta Baby Portabello Mushroom & Spinach pizza is that I don't have to share it because no one else like mushrooms & this baby is covered with em! Just like I like it! So it got me to thinking about the other things I love that I don't want or have to share with the other members of my family. My dirty little kitchen secrets.....

Bagels from Panera Bread!! My favorite, the literally named Everything bagel. If Mark knew I paid that much for bagels he would forbid me from ever buying them again, but they are just sooooooo good, especially with a very flavorful cream cheese to generously spread on them!

Roasted Red Peppers (I put them on sandwiches, salads, pizza or put them in my pasta)

Freschetta Baby Portabello Mushroom & Spinach pizza

Self explanatory & seen in earlier posts, so you already know I love them. They are sinfully good.

These are my top four! WHAT ARE YOURS???????

Sweet Summer Corn

I had been awaiting the display of sweet summer corn at the grocery store with each trip these past couple of months & this last time it was finally there. I carefully picked out 6 ears and couldn't wait to get home and shuck them to savor the smell. We enjoyed them with burgers cooked on the grill & french fries. YUM!