Monday, March 24, 2014

This Is It

Well, as I have spent Lent in some contemplation of social media that I'm active in, there has been a lot of deleting content going on here lately. Guess what, this blog is next on my hit list.
I have nearly 10 years on this blog. For now, I'm done blogging. I'm done writing blog posts in my head I don't get down. I'm done feeling guilty for not posting more often.
This has been a great experiment but it's time to write for myself. To spend time thinking about where my writing is going and maybe write for a different audience.
I'll leave this up for a while, but eventually it'll go dark.
See you on the next adventure!

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

GR, LT, and BL

Goodreads. LibraryThing. Booklikes.

Three sites that catalog and offer social media to bookworms. I used an excel spreadsheet for years, saving it and transferring it from floppy to 3.5 inch disk to Google Docs/Drive. Eventually I uploaded it LibraryThing and paid the 25$ membership fee. I enjoy the cataloging aspect of LT. But the social aspect wasn't as obvious as Goodreads.

So off to GR I went, extensive TBR list in tow. I don't interact much social via comments, but enjoyed hearing about new books. I avoided the groups and was generally happy. Then Amazon purchased and I have to say I've been leery of some of the changes. I also didn't like my at-times embarrassing book choices on my TBR are so public. After all, I'm not a big romance fan but these things crept in and then there was stuff I have no idea I had added.  I also didn't like getting the monthly newsletter and having a listing of "Books By Authors Read" when I hadn't read any of these authors and they were on my to-read shelf. Not enough to leave, not yet. I decided to transfer my TBR shelf back to LT and use GR as my read/review depository.

However, transfer my rather large TBR shelf wasn't easy. There's no way to export just one shelf out of GR and when I would try to export my entire library and delete anything that wasn't on my to-read shelf, well it didn't seem to export all of them. So for months, literal months, I sat and by hand transferred over 9,000 books to LT. I easily deleted a couple thousand off my TBR.

I love LT ability to create a shelf and hold a book there and not be tied to "it has to be on one of these three shelves" ala GR.  So I split my collection into shelves that make sense to me. There's TBR-Fiction, TBR-history, TBR-true crime. Shelves of books that I get in the mood to read and that I can easily manipulate what book to choose-pages? publish date? Dewey decimal? These are all options.

So, to-read is in LibraryThing (LT) and reading/have read in Good reads (GR). That leaves Booklikes or BL.

BL is like Tumblr but exclusively for book readers. While you can post about anything in the world, it is a lot of former GR members. There's Tumblr-like posts of photos, quotes, and gifs. I use the site as deposit of quotes and ideas during book-been trying to use it more as a commonplace book. Plus I reblog stuff I like. It's also where the widgets on the right came from that will post what I've read, how I'm doing on my number of books to read this year.

I've update the Where to Find Me links and moved them to the sidebar on the right. I'm not asking you to follow me or cyberstalk but just wanted to update why and how I'm managing my different bookshelves.

Where do you keep your TBR list?

Sunday, January 26, 2014


I'm afraid my external drive is about to fail on me. It only has my music and picture files. Right now, music has been transferred to the laptop and I'm hoping the picture files will be safe until Chris' bonus comes in-which will be a month or so.

I've spent the better part of last six months cleaning up my music files. Right now I have 2009 albums. 995 Album artists. I have already deleted some of them, or sent them to Chris' side of the computer. Since everything is nice and tidy, I've been listening to my albums by date. Which means it's been a lot of jazz here lately. It's been rather lovely and somehow fitting for this time of year.

Next few albums is Phil Spector, early Stones, and Everly Brothers.

I may have to find a few more jazz albums though, as I am really enjoying right now.

Oh, one more thing. If you never try jazz again, just give Miles Davis' Kind of Blue a listen. It's iconic, it's fantastic, it's the one album in jazz that you must listen to at least once. And it's on Spotify.

Fave jazz artist/album? 

Thursday, January 9, 2014

Fave Christian Music

So my friend Lana posted recently about her current favorite worship songs and I thought I would join in.

Let me start out by saying that these albums right now are getting played hot and heavy in my car. I also have a couple of CD's I have burned-compilation CDs that I flip through.

Fave albums of the moment (and some have been faves for months!)

Vertical Church Band-The Rock Won't Move

Passion-White Flag

Tenth Avenue North-Over and Underneath

And the album creeping up to I-need-to-rip-this-now status is Kutless-Strong Tower

So, with all that here's the top few songs that just make me praise and worship down the highway. Don't judge-at least I'm not on my cell phone!

The Rock Won't Move-Vertical Church Band

10,000 Reasons-Matt Redman/Passion

I can't tell you how many times I've caught myself singing the intro under my breath at work :)

Redeemed-Big Daddy Weaver
What gets me every time is the line: "Stop fighting a fight that's already been won."

You Are-Tenth Avenue North
This is my song to change my perspective. Seriously, running late, life upside down, or dinner failure is nothing compared to God. All I have to do is surrender and seek him for course corrections.

So, what are some of your faves at the moment?

Saturday, January 4, 2014

Links and New Year Planning

Since Google Reader shut down, I've been using Feedly. Here lately I've been trying to trim my feeds so it's not so overwhelming. Well, it's been a couple of weeks since I really sat down and went through feeds. Let me share a few favorite posts from this evenings readathon.

I enjoy Instagram but feel that my photo feed isn't anything exciting. In fact, sometimes I feel like a kindergartner playing among Ansel Adam type photogs. Amy, of Lemon and Raspberry, has a great list of Instagramers that  have incredible photos. Followed most of these and am going to use my Instagram feed for inspiration this year!

Phil Everly and Ray Price have both passed away recently. The Music's Over is one of my fave sights for musicians who have passed.

Beth Dargis is one of my favorite simplicity coaches. She blogs regularly and has an email with some great tips for the coming week. If you are doing some planning for 2014, she has two great tips. And here's some great tips to help greet the new year with a clear space.

I've had a tab open on my desktop for the week. It's titled "6 Tips to Create the Life you always wanted."

I've had a chunk of that post in my Evernote file since 2009. It seemed like an appropriate time to reread and plan 2014.

That piece of the post I had save is this:

 Create your dreams.What kind of escape do you long for?
A day of no interruption for reading? A day at the spa? A relaxing day on the coast or a night at a bed and breakfast? Well what are you waiting for?! If you can’t make those dreams a reality, recreate them as best you can. Life is too short to miss out on what you want out of it. You can make beautiful things happen on a shoestring budget with a little planning, creativity and imagination.
Start planning something lovely for yourself. Yes, it takes time. That is the point. Spend time creating a beautiful life instead of wasting it on things that actually drain your energy.
The whole article is rather wonderful this time of year. Some simple reminders as we prepare for a new year.

While reading that post, there are a bunch of self-linked posts at the bottom and found a great article on how to freshen your home. While the post focuses on spring-how can you bring some of the current season in or decorate?

I leave my snowmen up till at least February. And while I still need to get the last of the Christmas decorations out-some will show some winter spirit.

Well, time to fix a late, light supper and grab a shower. Hubs will be home soon.

Thursday, January 2, 2014

Going Forward

So, 2013 was apparently not conductive to blogging. For that matter, reading either. My reading numbers was under 50 books.

Truth is, I'm changing. I can see myself not reading as much as I use to in the past few years. Once again, that means this blog is going to have to adapt or die. So, if you follow for book reviews, be forewarned this is going to be a lot of other topics covered. The title of the blog will still fit, as I am going to blog about what's on my mind. I think too much and this needs to be a place to save my thoughts.

I expect to do some blog updating in the next few days. New background, new color scheme. Freshen the place up a bit :)

So, what will be covered?

I have over 4000 notes in Evernote, some are marked as "toread" so I plan to share links as I read those and clean up Evernote this year.

I'll share the occasional item from the interwebs that I find intriguing.

I'll link and/or post book reviews.

I'll post what we've eaten this week or new recipes that really worked for us-links but probably not recipes.

I'll just share what I feel like sharing at the moment.

Wanna come along for the ride?

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Goodbye Summer

Anybody else happy that summer is leaving? Man, Sunday afternoon I was decorating my baker's rack with fall knick knacks. I can't wait to see the heat, humidity, and bright sunshine go away. I am a fall and winter girl. I am ready to bake again-get my spices going, I've been stocking up on baking supplies, and I've cleaned out my fridge. I am so ready for the fall!

My reading is down considerable this year. It is what it is. I've been working on my book club book for Wednesday but it just isn't working. I think I am thinking too hard about YA dystopian literature. It's compelling read but I just can't get over how cliched this feels. It's like there's a check list for writing YA lit. Must include being an underdog, possibility of losing all standing in society, the possibility of being super unique, and there's always some romance. Just not working for me at the moment.

I have been cooking. All my new favorite recipes that I can find online I pin to Pinterest. So if you want some inspiration, check out this board.

Before I go, I'll leave you a pic of my fall decorations.

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Foggy Brain

I've struggled for a couple of years now to get my Vitamin D levels up to something approaching halfway normal. It's not really going that well, despite prescription strength Vitamin D. About three weeks ago I was given a high dose of antibotic that couldn't be taken with supplements. So I didn't take my VitD for 10 days and since the habit was broken, that turn into 3 weeks. As a result, I've felt extremely exhausted, emotional, and foggy brain.

 I've watched a lot of TV but not much reading. In fact, my numbers for this year is so dismal. Since I've been back on the VitD for a few days, the fog is lifting and I've finished one book and tossed another. I really should get into my book club read as I have just under two weeks to finish it. However, at the moment I am craving a really good mystery book. I really wish my library system had order more than just three copies of Craig Johnson's newest book. However, I will just have to be patient till it comes in.

I should be able to get a mini review of the books I've read here recently, and I want to talk about the book I tossed. I have a whole basket of stuff to read but I'm off to my shelves to see what I can find to scratch my mystery book itch!

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

When It’s Spring Time in Oklahoma

The tornadoes come out of the sky. Thankful, Tulsa has been spared in this round, but I can’t help but wonder how long before we’re hit. Just a reminder, that while Moore is the biggest news story three other Oklahoma towns were hit: Shawnee, Luther, Carney.

The Atlantic has some sobering photos of the damage in Moore.

Huffington Post has photos of tornadoes from Oklahoma, Iowa, and Kansas. Just for the record, I will never seek shelter in a vehicle and picture 142 shows the result of being on the highway and caught in a storm. Lots of photos of Moore, but there are other shots from other tornadoes.

This infographic has me thinking Idaho might be a great place to move.

Kicker has a great breakdown of the Moore tornado.

And an article from Huffington Post from an Okie/Oklahoman. I would say that there’s some pride in being from the Midwest. Tornadoes are just the price we pay for living here. One thing I would mention, it’s not just Oklahomans but most of us living in the Midwest that are well versed in weather radar, maps, and warnings/watches. We discuss storms after the fact, before the fact, and analyze like a Monday morning quarterback the recent storms. It’s how we deal with the wonky weather.

The only time I remember seeing anything resemble a tornado was when I watched clouds rotate in Missouri. It took a second for me to realize that the clouds were circling and that was not a good thing-I headed for shelter just as the sirens went off. Have you ever seen a tornado?

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Happy Dance

Yep, it seems I’m reading again.
happy dance
That’s pretty much how I feel.

So, I’ve read 10 books this month. We are 5 months into this year and I’ve read 10 books. Horrible, just horrible. It should be at least 20 but my reading slump has been horrific, it’s been long (stretching at least into last year if not going on two years), and it’s been hard on me. Hmmm, you know, there could be a link between the head/emotional battles and the lack of reading.

So, this weekend I finished the ARC (advance reader’s copy) of The Broken Places by Ace Atkins. Short summary: good book but start at the beginning of this wonderful series. This book is due at the end of May and I won a copy from the publisher. Read my review on Goodreads.

Books I’ve read here recently included our book club book; The Paris Wife by Paula McLain and Freedom Summer by Bruce Watson. I’ve added the Bruce Watson book to the book club list.

I’ve started-okay I picked up at work my newest book. Yes, AK is still over there on the sidebar haunting me. I can only take a few pages a day of Russian drama. And I should have the new Prey book-Silken Prey-in my hot little hands in the next couple of days.

Oh yeah, more happy dance!

happpy dance

Sunday, April 28, 2013

This Weekend

Weather So how was your weekend? Tulsa had a sorta cool, wet, overcast Saturday. Man, Sunday, though, was gorgeous with temps reaching the 80’s.

Social I had both days off this weekend, and hubs took Saturday off so we had the rare full weekend off together. Next time this will happen is probably 4-6 months away. We also had a Saturday BBQ at my mom’s to celebrate my youngest sisters birthday. We all ate too much and then ate cake.
 2013-04-27 15.22.57
My sister getting a taste of frosting and her adorable son.

Entertainment Since we were both off, we enjoyed a couple of shows off of the DVR-Blue Bloods, Vegas, and The Voice. We have several movies to get through but ended up watching all 9 episodes of The History Channel’s series The Men Who Built America. I have to say that while the titans of industry treated their workers like crap, they advanced technology and what we were capable of accomplishing. Kinda of a Catch-22. Advance technology, capability, limits at the expense of the Americans.
I do have to say that several times, I would hear in my head a line from the opening speech give by Jeff Daniels in HBO’s Newsroom that aired last summer.
We built great big things; made ungodly technological advances.
By the way, that clip is here and it really gets cooking around the five minute mark. Back to Men, while it focused on Rockefeller, Morgan, Vanderbilt, Carnegie (which they couldn’t seem to decide how to pronounce it), and later Ford. Ford, while yes a captain of the auto industry, was really in a different era then the Big Four. Ford built his auto because the patents were deemed a monopoly while Rockefeller and Carnegie was fighting that they weren’t running monopolies.  Yes, I really enjoyed Men Who Built America and would recommend it to most everyone.

RSS Feeds I’ve been a Google Reader girl for the longest time. All of my blog feeds are kept there, I’ve got them organized into folders by topic, and my favorite thing about GReader was buried in the Goodies section: a “Next” bookmarklet that let you surf the web via your feeds. My favorite way of relaxing with a couple hours of TV was by hitting next. Since GReader is going away, I’ve been looking at options and settled on Feedly. I’m not going to wait till the last minute to switch over. Feedly was simple to import and I’m still playing around some with it. It will work for now. I will be interested in what the next round of RSS Feeds will look like when GReader shuts down but for now I am settled.

Cooking I made both banana bread and banana coffee cake this weekend. Yep we’ve been bad and haven’t really done much cooking otherwise. I need to get my menu plan set for the next couple of weeks but I still feel like I’m on weekend time.

Pics from this weekend:

2013-04-27 14.44.00

Mason helping himself to Chex Muddy Buddies.
I am so in love with this little guy!

This week: Not much going on here beyond payday. We have book club on Wednesday (and I've read two chapters in my book-go me!). I have to go to Driller's Stadium and get tickets for a game we are going to on May 15. My sister's birthday is Friday and I'll run over there with her birthday present and a sweet. I have to work on Saturday, but it looks like a normal week. Or at least as normal as I can make it!

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Playing Catch Up

I've got a few things to blog and quite frankly I need to be more consistent on blogging. I've got a folder that sits on my bookmark bar that I am going to empty out to share with you guys. Just a little of this and that today.

Also, been working on a post about Project Life. Unfortunately that is turning into a novella. If you haven’t heard about Project Life (PL, as I call it) it is a simplified way of scrapbooking. Becky Higgins created PL and has lots of information of her site. I heard about the site through Ali Edwards. PL was originally a way to scrap a photo a day project. It has evolved and lends itself to evolving to what you need to scrap. While a traditional 12x12 scrap book is overwhelming, expensive, and time consuming; PL is definitely doable.  I am going to share later this week my method of doing PL. And I promise, I will make it way smaller than a novella Smile

On to the pages to share with you guys.

10 Numbers You Must Have in your Phone-this is something I had in my Evernote files for a long time. As I have been working on reading/cleaning/erasing things I came across this and I sat down and did this! Now, I don’t need airline reservation number in my phone-I’ve never flown in my life and really don’t think I will to be honest. I did add the locksmith, the tow truck, the insurance hotline number, and my debit card lost card number (I also don’t have a credit card or that would have been added). Took me maybe 20 minutes and could potentially save me down the road.

Gokicker has become one of my fave new sites to help break down and analyze news events.This article on Justin Bieber and his comments at the Anne Frank Muesum is one great example. While I initially thought he was a douchebag, I realize that millions of teen girls could be exposed to Anne Frank and her legacy. So while I still think what he did was insensitive at least there’s the potential for some good. And by the way, don't schools still teach Diary of Anne Frank?

Carrie remake is coming and at first I was all rolling my eyes and thinking Hollywood doesn't have an original bone left. Then the trailer came out and I think I am going to go see this. After finally reading the book last fall, this looks like it maybe a bit more in line with the book than the original movie. We shall see.

My schedule at work has gotten wonky so I am off today. After getting groceries, working on digitization of more recipes (almost done!), and cleaning of the kitchen table it's time to sit and get some overdue library movies watched.

Have a fantastic day!