Saturday, September 26, 2009

A little gratitude:

So... we're doing the Thanksgiving thing a little early this year. Why? Because I said so and I'm bigger than you. Hmmm... yeah, okay - so any of you who know me won't buy into that one, how about "because I said so and this is MY blog and SO THERE!" Yeah - that works for me...

Today I'm super grateful for:

Sleep - it refreshes, it centers... someone was playing a game recently and had to stop because their "stamina" was low... I think the character had to eat some pie to refresh their stamina - I tried that yesterday - but sleep is what ultimately did the trick.

Friends - I had SO many messages recently from old friends just offering their support for my family... All of your comments here and facebook (and e-mails) just brightened my day and reminded me why blogging has been such a therapeutic thing (see, I'm laughing now at the ridiculous way the word "therapeutic" looks... what's not therapeutic about laughter?) I even had a dear friend come seek me out at the funeral (seriously, that one hug was worth whatever crazy arrangements you had to make - thanks)... I met new friends who I think might have thought I was a little strange (but hey, you DO know that I'm a part of that one family)...
Speaking of Family - seriously, couldn't have gotten through this without them. From the phone calls at all sorts of ridiculous hours and the shared retail therapy that has resulted in the most comfortable shirt I think I've ever owned - and ESPECIALLY the pie breakfast... I'm so glad to come from a family where my tendency to heal with laughter is not looked upon as evil and heartless.

Laughter - seriously... it's my favorite. Sometimes the tension is just WAY too much and I think we're all about to break in two. I come from the sort of family that someone (not me... I can't claim this one) can say to my sister who is hurting like I can't quite grasp - "honey, just think - that would have been harder to get through if it were in Klingon" and bring a smile to her face... and really - I think the whole world would be much harder to get through if we spoke Klingon... (I think I'd just stay home)

Pie - no explanation.

Gospel truths - I know some of my readers don't come from that little world, and I'm not trying to be preachy, but the faith I have in the teachings of the LDS church regarding death - those have been essential to getting through the past week. I'm not sure how others cope. Knowing that someday - after the ordeal of this earth life - that we will have the opportunity to be with her sweet son. Knowing that we all will have the opportunity to be re-united with those we have lost in life, and knowing that we can be together as a family... that gets me through these hard moments in life... that makes me strive for more of the good moments... that keeps me from going ballistic when my kids make cookies and leave the kitchen a splattered and sticky nightmare... I need to endure, I need to smile, and I need to remember that it's all worth it in the end - and that God's "got my back".

Thanks. Really.

Friday, September 18, 2009

Without going into detail...

there's been a loss in my family - and because I'm not completely "coping" right now I'm just letting you all know that it might be a few days (or more) before I get back to the point where blogging seems necessary. Or at least where I don't feel guilty for doing something "normal" in my life. Funny thing - some of the first names that popped into my head to look to for support and love... were fellow bloggers...

so thanks - I appreciate your support. Prayers for my sister and her family - and for my sweet parents and siblings - and for me... all of those would be welcome. We will get through this trial just like we always do - by coming together and supporting one another. that's what families do darnit.

Thursday, September 17, 2009

The Hourglass Door - Lisa Mangum

this is a first novel for Mangum - but I'm sure it won't be her last. There were a few "slow" moments, but never for long.

I don't normally classify books as Girl Books or Boy Books - but I have to say that this was a little more girly than I'd normally give my oldest son (although he did read it... he called it a chick book). There are lengthy descriptions that bored him to tears... how Dante pours a drink, how Dante forms his letters... as I've learned through the years of marriage, men just don't care! Seriously - women can appreciate the cute fruit snacks and agonize over whether our kids want to have Barbie Fruit Snacks or Dora Fruit Snacks this week... men? They just want to know which box is on sale and usually shovel them all into their mouths without knowing if they've consumed a tractor, a shark, or a super hero... So yeah - kinda girly - but hey, turns out I'm a girl so I liked it just fine!

Okay, less about my life, more about the book: S bought this one - making me wish I'd picked this up instead of another HORRID book that I'm still trudging my way through... you'll hear about that later when I enumerate how badly I regret that impulse buy...

THIS book - it's worth the sticker price!

Think Twilight meets Time Traveler's Wife meets Dr. Who with just a dash of Harry Potter and a hint of Monster's Inc... wait, maybe don't think that... that might just be too weird!

The fact is, this book has a freshness to it that is... well... refreshing -- yes, the beginning is pretty typical of a lot of teen lit, and yes, it DOES smack of Twilight more than once... but no, not in the uber-steamy way that will send pre-teens clamoring to buy Team Dante t-shirts.

Here - let me just get rid of some of the parallels between the books to begin with:
Abby seems more intellectual than Bella (not to mention more coordinated)
Dante, good looking - yes... "vampire hot" - probably not (PLEASE if this is ever a movie let ME do the casting!!!!) I envision him as quite a catch, but accessible.
The attraction between the two is immediate - but not described as intensely... or as deadly... still - I always get bothered when fictional teens are willing to change their entire lives around for someone they've known for a few months... you might want to have a chat about THAT issue...

Okay - so here: Abby and her friends all live in a close knit CA community -- they do stuff together like drama club and hanging out at the local dance place. Then Dante shows up - he's rumored to be dangerous, but he and Abby become friends. Really, just friends... and then some other "friends" come to town and it goes a little crazy from there.

Things I love: Abby's family is fairly normal. Too often in teen lit. with have to begin with a kid who's already been messed up by their family somehow... kind of nice to have a kid that the "normal" kids can relate to!
Abby epitomizes "sweet 16 and never been kissed" in the beginning - shoot, she makes the good girls look bad... and even when the kisses finally come - the descriptions are good without being "steamy"
I love figuring out a book -- not the predictable ones, they're no fun... the the tough ones with lots of twists and turns, I LOVE when I can figure them out. Guess what I love even more? NOT being able to figure them out. As I was reading and got to page 275 I suddenly yelled "Omigosh" and my husband thought I'd hurt myself... nope, I just thought I'd finally figured it out... 3 pages later I was doubting myself... 10 pages after that I felt like a moron for ever thinking it in the first place - but that was okay because I had a NEW brilliant theory (which also eventually proved wrong...).

For keeping me on my toes when I'd had only 4 hours sleep - Lisa Mangum gets my thumbs up of approval - and I will SOOoooo be waiting on the next installment The Golden Spiral next summer.. because I just HAVE to know what's happening next year at this weird college... and what's up with Valerie, and what about the Ex-BF/BFF situation... and...

Language... shoot, don't remember any issues - maybe if I hadn't read it so quickly and at such odd hours?
Violence... yeah, there's some - but nothing gory or unnecessary...


and I'm looking forward to some additional comments from S - but right now I've REALLY got to get to work!!!

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

Finger Foods...

So... the $64,000 question... how IS that new job of mine going???

just Peachy Keen... as long as by "peachy" you mean stressy and by "keen" you mean ugh...

okay, so it's really not all that bad - the schedule is getting solidified - I have actually managed to work in a twice weekly lunch with my kindergarten girl... which is technically what I'm doing right now... except she REALLY just wanted to watch Wishbone... whatever.

I do work with some fun people... some of whom might actually drop by here so I can't compare anyone to characters from The Office... I don't even really HAVE to compare them myself since we can all take that facebook quiz... I'm pretty sure our office is fully of Ryans and Michaels... with a Pam or two... Oh - and definitely one poor Phyllis and Andy type...

great - now I'm going to get in trouble...

oh well, since I'm in trouble let me just tell you that last week I grabbed a Wendy's Salad and headed back to the office where I finally got to eat my lunch at 2:00... only the Fork part of my salad had not made it all the way to the office... being the resourceful person I am I made sure my hands were clean before declaring to everyone present (Phyliis and Andy included) that chicken strips, lettuce, and mandarin chicken slices are now finger food. I'm sure there were a few snickers amongst those in the office but can I mention how annoyed I was later when I was putting away stuff in closets (that I've never before opened) and found a bag FULL of forks... so I ask *phyllis* about them... and get this response:

"oh yeah - I wondered why you were eating with your fingers, but I didn't want to insult your intelligence..."

ugh...

oh well, now I know, and I can forget my fork about 144 times before I have to stress about it.