Monthly Archives: September 2012

Books about Vampires and Dragons

I love books, I love to read. I spend quite a bit of time at the library. Most of the time I walk out with a stack of books knowing I don’t have time to read them all. When I browse, it’s usually the cover or the spine that catches my eye. I love art, so it’s whatever jumps out at me, will grab my attention. I rarely look at the author, unless it’s one of my favorite authors and I’m specifically looking for. I love new, first time authors.

First I read the back, if there’s a synopsis written, telling me what the story is about, if not I will open the book to the inside jacket cover and read the synopsis there. Sometimes I will read the first page; if the story grabs my attention enough to make me turn the page, i’ll check the book out.

I read all kinds of genre’s, mostly Fantasy; that’s usually what I write. I’m not a huge fan of romance novels. You would normally find me in the Young Adult section, I find a lot of good books there. I had checked one out not too long ago that I would recommend to anyone who reads Fantasy or Fiction. It’s called Firelight by Sophie Jordan. It was an interesting read and hard to put down. I found it unique, something I haven’t read about before.

Since Twilight, everyone has been overdoing the Vampire scene. I’ve seen a lot of Faery books and a few Werewolf books, but Sophie Jordan’s book, I believe might be a first. I could be wrong on this and would love for someone to correct me (kindly though), but her book is about dragons that have learned to evolved into humans, calling themselves draki. They can manifest (shape shift) themselves back into dragon form and back into human form.

She has a second book of her, four book draki series, called Vanish. My name has been added to a list at the library to check it out. I hope you will check it out too.

Another Fantasy, Mystery, Fiction book that I really loved, I found in the Adult section, is a Vampire series by Chris Farnsworth. I started with the second book, Blood Oath. It’s about a vampire that protects the President of the United States through a blood oath. I thought after ten pages I would put it down and not pick it up again; this is before I started reading it, I was wrong. It was actually a really good book. Written really well. I finished the book within a few days and am now on the third book called Red, White, and Blood.

Both of these books are newer books, so they should be in your local bookstore or library. Check them out.


How I lost my entire work…almost

I reach for my backpack to get my flash drive, only to find that it isn’t there. Suddenly I realize that I had left it in one of the computers at the library at school. I had visited the library early that morning to study for my biology test. I got on the computer to check a few homework items and also check my email, then left for class. I had forgotten about my flash drive completely.

Many people use the college library, especially the computers, so thoughts of someone just taking it and not turning it in was running through my mind. Why is it a big deal you may ask? My flash drive has everything on it. I haven’t had the time to buy a spare one to separate my writings from my schoolwork, so it’s all on one flash drive. So you can see why the panic.

A small flicker of hope sends signals to my brain telling me not to be overly dramatic, that the librarian might’ve seen it and took it to her desk or someone took it to her. It wasn’t a big enough flicker as I felt ill to my stomach and actually tossed and turned most of the night.

I got up early this morning. Forget hitting the snooze button. My daughter and I were actually ready to go on time this morning. I dropped her off and got to my school twenty minutes early. I walked to the library and asked if there were any flash drives turned in. She held two of them up, one of them just so happened to be mine. I wanted to hug her neck, but for the sake of not giving her my cold, I didn’t. I did walk away with a huge grin on my face.

Now to put a leash on this thing so it won’t happen again.

I’m not a zombie, I’m a mom

How many of you mom’s have actually said that? I’m not a zombie, I’m a mom. Or better yet, someone tells you how tired you look. I look at them and calmly say, I was up all night with my child.

People stare my way thinking the Zombie Apocalypse has begun and I must be one of the victims. When I walk from one place to the next I haven’t the energy to keep from slumping over. I even drag my feet and walk in a slow pace. I don’t bother to put on make up, so instead I have dark circles under my eyes. I’m forcing my eyes to stay open that I have this look on my face, that if I actually saw myself, I would understand why people would think I’m a zombie. “No, I’m a mom,” I say. Though people continue to stare.

Occasionally my daughter gets into these fits at night. Last night just happened to be one of them. I had only wished she picked a Friday or Saturday instead of a school day. I thought it was going to be an all nighter as she cried endlessly. I got up out of bed, checked her diaper only to find she was dry. She just wanted me to hold her. I took her back to my bed. ‘Big mistake,’ I thought to myself. ‘She would only want to stay here.’ I could only be so right! All she did was wiggle, wiggle. All I wanted to do was sleep. She’d roll over and smack me in the face, then giggle. I made the mistake of turning over, facing away from her. This only caused her to start crying uncontrollably again.

I rolled back over and hold her, saying everything was going to be okay. After several times of putting her in her bed, then back to my bed, then back to her bed again, I looked at the clock and it was after one in the morning. I fell back into bed, literally, face first into my pillows, reaching for my covers somewhat and fell asleep.

Firefighter Down

My Grandma always reads the newspaper from front to back, every article, so nothing slips her attention. If she sees something that she knows I’m interested in, she’ll either sit it in front of my chair at the kitchen table, which is next to the high chair of course, or if I’m already in the kitchen she’ll tell me about it.

There was an article in the paper the other day about a firefighter that is fighting a battle of a different kind. A battle she and I are quite familiar with in our family. He has stage 4 colon cancer and has been fighting it for over a year now. The newspaper went on to say what a year he’s had with this cancer. The doctors have removed 75% of the tumors and he has been on chemo. He says that he plans to go back to work for the Fire Department at the end of the year.

His church had a silent auction yesterday and all the proceeds went to him. Grandma and I decided to go see what all they had. There were many craft items that caught her attention, especially this one quilt. She got to talking to the lady who handmade it herself. She had sewn bible scriptures in it and it was adorned in fall colors (my favorite colors). It was beautiful to see in person as it was the first item you would see when you walked in the room.

I pushed my daughter around the room, looking at the other items. There were several jewelry pieces, a few wreaths, a vase, photo frames with gift certificates, there was a gift certificate to a cake decorating place, many paintings, and a few other gift certificates. I bid on a Mary Kay basket I saw.  The thing about a silent auction is, you write your name and number down on a piece of paper and how much you bid. You never know who will come behind you and write their name down and place a higher bid, outbidding you.

I was surprised though when I was called the next day and told that I won my item. Not only that, but I had won the quilt my grandmother was looking at thoroughly all night. She and I had both put our names in the raffle. I’m really proud of that quilt and so is she. The lady who made the quilt was the one who dropped it off. Both Grandma and I had to tell her we loved the quilt.

She asked us if we knew the firefighter, Gavin Wright, and if that was why we were at the silent auction. Grandma said no, neither of us knew him. Both, she and I, have a place in our hearts for firefighters and always will. Grandma’s husband, my grandpa was a firefighter. He and a few others started the Bryant Fire Department. He retired from the Fire Department in 1997. I had a little hand in firefighting when I was in the Navy. I also have friends and relatives on the Fire Department. Every year around the holidays my Grandma and I make a huge container of homemade baked goodies and take over to the Fire Department. She has really appreciated their help during the time my Grandpa was sick. It makes their day to get homemade goodies when they’re at work, instead of spending the holidays with their family.

Classic cartoons

My Grandma puts Tom and Jerry on the TV for my daughter to watch. It reminds me of when I was a few years older than she is now. I would get up around six on Saturday mornings, crawl into bed with grandpa and grandma and lay there for a few minutes. After being told to get still from Grandma several times I would get down, fix me a bowl of cereal, and turn on the Cartoon Network. When I was a kid it was Quick Draw McGraw, Bugs Bunny, Huckleberry Hound, Captain Caveman, and The Smurfs. Then I would watch Tarzan in black and white.

I’ve noticed that cartoons aren’t like they use to be and I’ve found myself having a hard time getting into majority of them. I’m tolerating SpongeBob. Dora I don’t mind as it teaches my daughter; she’s two and can count to ten because of Dora. I’m really not familiar with any other cartoons other than what I grew up with.

What I do know is that the cartoons I grew up with taught me how not to chase a road runner and that Wylie Coyote spent a lot of money buying Acme products. And also Bugs Bunny was smart for a rabbit. I sometimes felt bad for Elmer Fudd. Listening to the rolling credits as the cartoon ends makes me want to ditch homework for another hour and curl up on the couch and watch classic cartoons with my little girl.

It’s raining clothes

My daughter loves to help me with her laundry. I wash and dry her clothes, fold them and place them neatly in her drawers. Later I walk into her room and find her dresser emptied completely of its contents. She’s sitting on the bed watching TV. All of her clothes, socks, shoes are all over the floor and on her bed.

I can’t even begin to smile this time. I calmly walk over, scoop up each article of clothing, fold them and place them back into the dresser. This goes on for a few days.

I bought those clips you put manually put on the dresser, the ones you have to push down with your finger to get the drawer open. It took me 45 minutes just to get one put on. I gave up on putting the rest of them on. The wood on her dresser must be made out of solid oak as I had problems drilling a single screw into it, just to hold the attachment into place.

She had finally stopped empting her drawers out, until the other day. Now it’s back to picking up her entire wardrobe off of the floor, socks, shoes and all.

First day of Autumn

Autumn is my favorite season. My favorite colors of yellow and orange can be seen in the changing of the leaves, the pumpkins that decorate my neighbor’s front porch. The coolness in the air that makes you forget how harsh the summer was.

Halloween is one of my favorite holidays. My sister’s place of employment sets up a booth at a Halloween event in downtown Benton, Arkansas called Spook City. The entire square block, surrounding the court house is blocked off and tables, booths, games, face painting, food carts are set up all around the square block passing out candy, coupons, toys, items of all kinds to kids of all ages that come dressed up in their costumes.

I have been doing this with my sister, Jaci, for three years now. Her son and my daughter usually have matching themed costumes. We would walk around the square, letting them collecting candy, then walk back to the booth to help one of her employees pass out candy. I usually ‘oh, how cute and aw, how adorable’ at every infant and toddler that comes our way, dressed in the cutest costumes.

This year I’m thinking of making a costume for myself and dressing up. No, I didn’t dress up the previous times that I’ve been, but now that my daughter is getting a little older, I thought I would show her Mommy’s in the spirit too.

Have a blessed weekend everyone! Happy first day of Autumn!

Still Missing Grandpa

Today would be my Grandfather’s 77th birthday. Two days ago, marked two years that he had passed away from cancer. Yesterday, my Grandmother placed flowers on his grave, something that she’s been doing for awhile now. He’s still missed by quite a few people in our family.

I was going through my computer, looking for some things for class and found a eulogy that I wrote and read at his funeral. I thought I would share. Wishing you all a blessed day.

My Grandpa

Icons, heroes, idols, someone you look up to. It starts in early childhood and with most it follows into adulthood. Almost everyone has that special person in their life and mine is my grandfather. He has many titles; my teacher – taught me how to ride a bike then later how to drive a car. My parent – he helped raise me. My sidekick – grandma named us double trouble from the things we would get ourselves into.

He was a husband to my wonderful grandmother for fifty three years. A father to three daughters. A grandfather to five granddaughters and one grandson. A great grandpa to two girls and one boy. He was a milkman, a baker, a firefighter, a mason, a Shriner, an eastern star, a preacher, and a truck driver.

But most of all he was your best friend. He was a God fearing man. Could put a smile on everybody’s face. Was quick with a joke and could always tell you a story. Enjoyed playing practical jokes or pulling pranks for fun. I’m proud to say that I had the chance to have him in my life and that I have many great stories and memories with him and many memories that I’m frequently reminded of, like the time I licked his stamp collection to his floor. I wasn’t even two yet. He use to take me to the post office, sit me on the counter, had me stick my tongue out, dab the stamp on my tongue and place it on the envelope. I had enjoyed licking stamps so much that when we got home I licked his entire stamp collection to his office floor. That was the only time he ever spanked me, which was a light tap on the bum, that hurt him more than it hurt me. He got mad for a few minutes but then laughed about it later.

He had such a sweet tooth. Grandma had sent us to the store with the check book to pick up meat and eggs, wecame home with several bags of sweet goodies. Grandma said ‘man, that’s a lot of burger meat and eggs.’ The next time she sent us to the store with $5. I had my checkbook that time. Walked in the door and grandma says, you sure bought a lot of stuff with $5. It was all on sale, I replied.

After he came home from the hospital from his accident in North Carolina he was doing such a good job walking, we needed a few things from the store and he asked me if he could drive. Of course I wasn’t going to say no. He had done perfectly well that when we got home I told grandma what a good job he had done. ‘You did what?’ She yelled. I did not know that he wasn’t suppose to drive.

I had the chance to go over the road with him for three weeks when I was nineteen. That was an experience I’ll always remember. We were in upstate New York and it was getting dark, then it started to snow and the bottom fell. Grandpa was sitting close to the steering wheel and I was leaning close to the dash on the passenger side and said ‘Grandpa, you’re driving in the middle of the road.’ He replied, ‘I can’t see the road.’ ‘Grandpa there’s a car coming.’ ‘I know honey, I can see that.’ The car had turned off onto another road before we got to it. He then said ‘I’ll pull off onto a rest area.’ We went a few miles down the road before we found a rest area. We couldn’t see the road from the ditch so he decided to continue on to his drop off.

We went to North Carolina, which was dripping sweat hot. Then to Houston, Texas. For those who have been there the Interstate goes around in a circle and I noticed and pointed out to grandpa that he passed that sign twice, he said ‘I know. I can’t get over to the outside lane to exit off.’ We went to Beaumont, Texas/ Louisiana. It was night time when we pulled into the place he needed to be. He stopped and got out of the truck, walked to a little building, then came back, put the truck in gear and began driving towards a larger building. I began to notice the surrounds, we were getting closer to the ship and then I looked down and notice we were on a dock, a wooden dock. ‘Grandpa, where are you going?’ ‘Down this way.’ ‘But you’re driving on a wooden dock.’ ‘That’s where they said I had to go.’ ‘Not with me in the truck, on a wooden dock, stop and let me out, I’ll walk.’ I saw the ship was marked, showing the water line was at 60′ deep.

Grandpa was always quite the prankster, always playing a practical joke on somebody. Everybody always came to him to decorate a cake for them no matter the occasion. I had the chance to be an icing tester many times. On one occasion I had asked if I could taste the icing and as always he said yes. As he was putting the finally touches on one side of the cake, I had cleared the other side of the cake entirely of its icing. He had turned the cake to look at it and noticed what I did. He had to clear the entire cake of icing and start over again. I believe I was three.

He was a very handsome man and was never ever selfish. He was always kind and would help others in anything the need. Always talked to everyone, where ever he went. And had a contagious smile. He had a love for life, friends, family and adventure and never complained once about anything. He was the rock of this family. We may have lost a wonderful man here on earth but heaven received an angel. I will miss our adventures, his pranks, jokes and stories but I know I will get to be with him again and continue on with our memories.

Will we get a Terra Nova?

I’m a HUGE fan of action and adventure. I guess that’s why I love Doctor Who so much. Every episode is adventurous and exciting and leaves you wanting more. I started with Doctor 9 and before I knew it I was hooked. I began to understand the terminology, phraseology, even cried when Doctor 9 left, then really cried when Doctor 10 left. It’s all about being a fan. And a fan I am!

I’m also a fan of Stephen Lang. I’ve seen quite a bit of his work and I admire his talents and his skill of acting. I’m not sure how many of you are familiar with a show that he was in last summer called Terra Nova. It only lasted one season, but I found it very interesting and entertaining. It had action and adventure and it also had dinosaurs. It also had family based drama.

It was something my eight year old nephew looked forward to watching when he came over to my house to stay the night. We had a ritual, I would put my little girl to bed, pop some popcorn, lay out two paper towels on the floor, and fill a bowl of popcorn for him. I would place his bowl on his paper towel and my bowl on my paper towel. Drinks would stay in the kitchen. The two of us would be glued to the TV until commercial break. When the commercials came on, we both looked at each other, smile and say “Wow! That was really cool!”

The first episode begins in the 22nd century.  The environment is over polluted and the air is too harsh to breath; people have to where re-breathers if they chose to go outside. Jim Shannon (played by Jason O’Mara) comes home to his wife and three kids. A few moments later the police knock on their door to search the house. They received word that the Shannon’s have broken the law. In this century the law states that there are to be two kids per household. The police find a third child hiding in a vent. Jim attacks the police officer and is sent to prison.

Scientist has found a way to go back in time, except it’s only a one way passage and its 85 million years. Eighty five million years ago dinosaurs roamed the planet. A few expeditions have gone through and set up housing, preparing for more people to come through. They’ve also set up high fences, surrounding the area to keep dinosaurs from coming into the housing areas. Along the fence lines are gunnery stations, set up with stun guns, rather than live ammo; to stun any and all dinosaurs that come near the fence. They decide to name this place Terra Nova.

Jim Shannon’s wife, Dr. Elisabeth Shannon, (played by Shelley Conn) is picked to be a part of a medical team that goes to Terra Nova. Only one bad thing, she’s only allowed to take her two eldest children with her. She helps her husband escape out of prison and he sneaks himself and their youngest daughter into Terra Nova.

Well, I won’t tell you what happens next, but I will tell you that Terra Nova just came out on DVD; I got mine. I believe it’s a show for all ages. It’s sad that it was short lived all due to the cost of money to keep the show running. But it does make you think, if our planet continues the way it’s going, will Scientist find a way for us to start over? Will they send us into the past and have us create our own Terra Nova?

Gone bananas

I love most fruit, green apples, strawberries, grapes, bananas. Fruit is the last thing on my list, besides meat, that I get as I make my way to the checkouts. My daughter likes to tell me each item I’m putting in the cart, but when I pass the frozen section and reach produce she gets excited; she likes fruit too. She points out and says to me out loud, “Orange, apple, grape.” And finally she says with more excitement, “NANAS!”

Bananas aren’t just eaten by themselves in our house, we use them to make banana nut bread, our favorite. But something about bananas that is my less favorite is the little pest that comes with it, the fruit flies. Where do these things come from? Every time I buy bananas there they are a few days later. After the bananas are gone, so are they.

I looked it up on the internet and find that they come with the bananas themselves. The fruit flies lay eggs on the bananas and as the fruit ripens the eggs hatch and the fruit flies feast on the fruit. Makes you not want to eat another banana does it? I’m sorry to gross you out, but it was there in black and white on the pest control website.

I got an idea though, the next time I buy bananas, I’ll rinse them off and see if this does the trick. Probably not, but I’m going to try and be positive and hope it really works. If any of you have a better idea, please share it, I would really like to know. 🙂

Have a blessed day and a wonderful weekend.