Thursday, February 20, 2014

Back Online!

Hello, All! I finally got the Internet back! I went more than a month without it and almost went crazy. In that time I made a huge dent into my book-a-week goal; I'm moving onto book twelve! I also made a cat design that I'm super stoked on. I have the design available on products on Society6 and as digital recipe cards that can be printed. They are available as an instant download on Etsy. I've uploaded the design to Spoonflower. Once I have the proof, I'll make it available for sale.

Speaking of Spoonflower, I got a free swatch of my quatrefoil leaf design when they were doing the freebie of the silky faille fabic. That design is now for sale if you're thinking way ahead to fall. At the moment, I'm thinking very short term (hopefully) to spring. I'm sure most of the country is over this winter what with all the storms and polar vortex days. The snow ledge finally all melted yesterday from the bedroom window and today we have a forecast of 8 inches >_< Please, no snow in May this year!!!

Right now I'm working on something new for a show I'm hoping to do in May. I'll post on it when I have the final version ready.

I signed up for a pen pal with International Geek Girl Pen Pal Club and got a super awesome match. I'm preparing to send out the first letter/package. Really excited! :)

In case you are interested in the books that I've read so far this year, here's a list:

1. Act Like a Lady, Think Like a Man- Steve Harvey
I felt that this book was too heavily geared toward women with children and way too religious for my taste. I don't like being told that God must be number one in everyone's lives and that somehow makes a positive relationship with a man. Clearly that works for some people, but I don't believe that Christianity is a necessity for happiness. I read this book not because I needed a self-help book, but because I think Harvey is funny and started reading it when I caught the movie on TV. I would say it is 'eh' at best.

2. Official Book Club Selection: A Memoir According to Kathy Griffin-Kathy Griffin
I started this book when it originally came out, but got too busy and shelved it. I decided to finally reread it and finish it. I love Kathy Griffin and I thought it was a funny read that also touched on some really sad moments that were honest. Good read if you're a fan.

3. All My Best Friends- George Burns
This read just like one of his acts. If you're familiar with George Burns, you know that he can be long winded and find yourself pleading that he'll get to the point. It was slightly repetitive with his signature bad jokes, but I love George Burns, so it was fun to get behind the scenes of old Hollywood.

4. Revenge Wears Prada- Lauren Weisberger
When I read The Devil Wears Prada when it came out, I was in high school and read it during downtime at school and it took me FOREVER! I didn't love it either. I was worried that the sequel would be the same, but I actually liked this book and it was a really quick read, only about 4 days. My guilty pleasure is chick lit, if it's yours too, this is a must read.

5. The Art of Happiness- Dalai Lama + Dr. Howard Cutler
This is a book that obviously deals with a heavy subject. I enjoyed the parts of dialog between the two men, but was bored by the psychological parts. The Dalai Lama interests me, which is why I picked this book up when I saw it at a thrift store. It has great advice which makes the goal of happiness seem achievable, but for Americans, I think that is hard to put aside our narcissism and look at things as simply as they are. Definitely a worthwhile read if you're interested in Buddhism and/or the Dalai Lama.

6. Skinny Bitch- Rory Freedman and Kim Barnouin
This is another book that I started last year, but hey, I finished it this year! In total, it took me 3-4 days to finish this book without really trying. I just didn't read a lot at a time and put it down when I got a book from the library. Anyway, this book gives a simplified explanation of veganism and cites many resources with facts supporting it and revealing the evils of factory farming. The "You Are What You Eat" chapter had me in tears. I would highly recommend this book to anyone interested in taking off his or her blinders and becoming conscious of the food industry.

7. The Borrowers- Mary Norton
Yes, this is a children's book, but it is a chapter book. I love the Studio Ghibli movie version of this story and wanted to read the book. It was adorable and fun.

8. Farenheit 451- Ray Bradbury
In high school, this was one of three books we could choose to read in English. I chose Go Ask Alice by Anonymous at the time. I picked this up for .69 at a thrift store because I thought maybe I missed out on it. (Go Ask Alice is so good, read that also!) This was a great read! You need to read this if you haven't!  I was blown away by how imaginative it was. There were so many things that are real today that probably seemed far-fetched when it was written in the 1950's. While I was reading it, I thought it seemed eerily similar to many episodes of The Twilight Zone. Turns out Bradbury was a writer on the show! 

SPOILER! I think it's funny that he kept men and women sleeping in separate beds and that smoking was still a very popular thing to do, but he gets a break for inventing blue tooth/ear buds!

9. Is Everyone Hanging Out without Me? (And Other Concerns)- Mindy Kaling
She says in the beginning that you can read this book in two days. I did. There were only a few times that I actually laughed out loud, but overall it was a funny book and quite enjoyable. She is very relatable to girls who grew up as awkward kids.

10. The Time Traveler's Wife- Audrey Niffenegger
I didn't think that I was going to be able to read this book in a week because it is so long. When I started, I was already 3 week ahead of schedule, so it wouldn't have mattered if I took a little extra time, but I couldn't put it down long enough to not finish it in a week. The characters are dynamic and the story is endearing. Be prepared with tissues or a hanky, this is a tear-jerker. I've requested the movie from the library, but from what I've ready the book is better, per usual.

11. Cemetery Girl: The Pretenders- Charlaine Harris + Christopher Golden
This is actually a graphic novel. I don't know if I can really count this because it took me an hour at most to finish it. It was a fun read and I look forward to book two.

I haven't decided which book is going to be number 12 yet. I have an unplanned book in transit to my library, but I kind of want to get started on the Harper Connelly series by Charlaine Harris. I'm planning on reading all of her novels this year because I really liked the Sookie Stackhouse series. If you were wondering, it is SO MUCH BETTER than True Blood. I still like the TV show, but am disappointed by the drastic changes to the main storylines the last couple of seasons.

I'm going to go make breakfast for dinner and cross my fingers that we don't actually get almost a foot of snow. I have a bang cut tomorrow morning and am supposed to be having a fun day off with BJ for my birthday. Boo, winter in Minnesnowda!