Wednesday, September 7, 2011

BEDS 7: Mid-week exhaustion

Today, which was originally going to be my day off, turned into me going to both of my jobs. The first, at the library, was to introduce the new intern to some of the things I do. It went very well, we got along well, and hopefully she wasn't too bored. The second, at the rink, was rather similar, with me teaching people some of the processes we do.

Other than that, I haven't done much today. I am reading over some of the materials for class tomorrow and getting a refresher in the classic children's books we were assigned. Mike has a friend over and they are playing video games while we wait for dinner to get here. I wish Chinese takeout was healthier, so I opted for a steamed seafood with veggies dish, while longing for beef & broccoli. Sigh.

After class tomorrow we leave for a weekend vacation at Seafood fest at Hampton Beach. I am very excited, although my vacation ends too quickly with me heading to a skating conference from 8-5 on Sunday. Hopefully that isn't too ridiculous!

Tuesday, September 6, 2011

BEDS 4 & 5: Bah

I should mention that I wrote a whole post yesterday and then Blogger gave me an error when I tried to both save and publish it. So. That happened.

BEDS 6: Internship swithceroo

Unexpected work.

Now that I am no longer the "official intern" at the library, there is a new one, and a new "unofficial" one, kind of like I was last year. And it seems to be my job, as the veteran intern, to take charge of the new "unofficial" intern. I met her last week, and she seems very nice, I just don't know how great a job I can do of teaching someone else, especially someone roughly my age. Tomorrow will be my first day introducing the intern to our various marketing strategies. I hadn't been planning on working at the library tomorrow, but it is only for a couple hours, and I've yet to really have a bad day there, so I am sort of looking forward to it.

It also turns out that I will be working at the rink tomorrow. We don't have programs tomorrow, just some hockey, which I don't really have anything to do with. However, a new director from a different rink in our company needs some help with our registration process and how we handle things at our rink. So it turns out I will be working not 1 but 2 jobs tomorrow, which was supposed to be a day off. Sigh.

The fact that Cupcake Wars is on TV right now is making all of this better. That, and that I just cooked the most delicious dinner ever.

Saturday, September 3, 2011

BEDS 3: Home is where the heart is

As I sort of mentioned previously, I made a brief trip to my parents' house last night into today to pick up some text books I had ordered for school and some children's books on my required reading list. We have a pretty lengthy reading list for my Children's Lit/Media course, and fortunately I have already read many of the picture books and picked up the copies at my parents' house to bring home to my apartment.

While there, I was able to spend the earlier part of today with a friend I hadn't seen one-on-one in a long time. It was nice to see someone I consider one of my very best friends and even though it had been a while, it was nice and still felt like a normal thing to do. I was worried it would feel forced, but it felt the same as it always did, from childhood, through high school, and beyond. 

Though I love going back to my hometown, and I love the people and the area, it still feels strange. My new apartment feels more and more like home as the days go by, and I am so happy we found a place that we are really determined to stay at for a while. It would be awesome to really make this our home and think of it as such. I will always love going back to my hometown and visiting, and sometimes all I want is to spend time there. I think that Mike and I would both say that our home is wherever we are with each other, as awfully cheesy as that sounds.

Now I am back at my apartment, enjoying our newly installed FiOS. I have missed being able to just turn on the TV and not worry about it stopping and having to choose something else to watch. Always figuring out what to watch on Netflix the past month was getting tiring, and the lazy part of me is glad to veg out for the night and enjoy being a couch potato.

Friday, September 2, 2011

BEDS 2: Let there be FiOS

After living in our new apartment for a month, we finally have TV! There was a big debacle with Comcast, and then Verizon was on strike, and so we had internet through the town for a few weeks, and now, finally, we have FiOS. I am so excited to be able to watch real TV channels again, instead of just watching TV shows through Netflix. Though I do love Netflix, I am just excited that we have tv in time for all the new fall programming. I am particularly excited about the new show Sarah Michelle Gellar is starring in, The Ringer.

I spent a good portion of my day today wandering around Target with a good friend. Target is one of the best stores to just wander around, browsing through DVDs or clothes. I wound up buying a few tank tops because the dryer at my apartment destroyed about 5 of mine. The replacements are very cute colors, which I hadn't seen at the other Target I've been to recently. Walmart is another store that's nice to wander around and find random deals.

I am now sitting at the table at my parents' house, talking with my mom, so I will keep this short!

Good night

Thursday, September 1, 2011

BEDS # 1: My Own BEDA

So I tend to have problems participating in BEDA (Blog Every Day April/August... whichever) when everyone else does, so here it is: Blog Every Day September: BEDS. Note this: I really like beds in general, and will probably write many a BEDS post from my own. This may help to motivate me to write more, or it may help motivate me to sleep more. We're going to find out, either way. Anyways, this post comes to you in THREE parts.

Part one: My final semester of grad school. Intense. On one hand, I am really excited to be done with this program, and on the other hand, I really like going to school. I have only had one of my three courses so far, and I won't start the other two until the 12th. The course I had today is going to be fairly similar in structure to a course I took in the Spring, but with a different focus and slightly different assignments (which is nice, not as repetitive as I was expecting).

Part two: Thanks to Mike's friend, we shall call him HWJC, I am going to be reading The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo as my next book (after Mansfield Park... talk about different styles!). I actually really enjoy when people who don't know my reading history take a look at my book shelves, and it's fun to ask them to choose my next victim --er, book.

Part three: I really want to learn Sign Language. I only know how to spell out my name, and I am looking into taking a course at one of the local community colleges in the Spring. It's something I have wanted to do since I found out a few years ago that colleges offered ASL as a language, and I think it will be a nice transition into non-schooling after I finish my degree.

See you tomorrow!

Friday, July 1, 2011

Book Survey

Wanted something fun to do while I listen to (and completely enjoy) really awful music!

Hardback, trade paperback or mass market paperback?
If it's an author I really like, I enjoy having hardcover books. Otherwise, paperback are easier to carry around, but not mass market.

Barnes & Noble or Borders?
I like Barnes & Noble a lot better, but I can't figure out the exact reason. It feels more like a book store to me.

Bookmark or dog-ear?
For books I care about and really like I use bookmarks, but I do dog-ear pages in a lot of my paperbacks.

Amazon or brick-and-mortar?
For pre-orders of books I plan on buying, I really like Amazon. And if I am going to buy many at once because sometimes Amazon has really good deals. But I love being in an actual bookstore and being surrounded by books!

Alphabetize by author, or alphabetize by title, or random?
I organize differently on each bookcase. Examples of bookcases/bookshelves I currently have: Dystopia shelf, Classics shelf, Books to read shelf, Books to convince my husband to read, Non-fiction shelf, Favorites shelf... and so on. I know exactly where everything should go, but no one else would be able to figure it out.

Keep, throw away, or sell?
I keep almost everything.

Keep dust jacket or toss it?
I keep them unless they get ruined for some reason.

Read with dust jacket or remove it?
I keep them on while reading most of the time and use the leaf as a bookmark.

Short story or novel?
I really like novels, but I also like short story collections at times.

Harry Potter or Lemony Snicket?
Harry Potter. I haven't read any of Lemony Snicket, though I liked the movie.

Stop reading when tired or at chapter breaks?
At chapter breaks, always.

“It was a dark and stormy night” or “Once upon a time”?
I think "It was a dark and stormy night" is my preference.

Buy or borrow?
Buy. Unless it's a book I am really unsure of, and then borrowing (either from library or friend) comes in handy. If I end up really liking it I will buy it later.

Buying choice: book reviews, recommendations, or browse?
Pretty much all three. I like to see what book bloggers are reading and if we have similar tastes I will go by their recommendations, and I also like to just find out what's coming out soon and see if anything sounds good.

Tidy ending or cliffhanger?
Cliffhangers in series are good, because then I will actually read the next book. But in stand-alone novels I really like a tidy ending with nothing left to wonder about.

Morning reading, afternoon reading, or nighttime reading?
All the time reading.

Stand-alone or series?
I like both, depending on the quality. I don't like waiting for books in series to come out though.

Favorite series?
Harry Potter, Hunger Games, when I was young I liked the Dealing With Dragons series.

Favorite children’s book?
Leo the Late Bloomer is such a good one. There are a lot that I really like though.

Favorite YA book?
The Nature of Jade by Deb Caletti and Dreamland by Sarah Dessen

Favorite book of which nobody else has heard?
Hmm... Samantha Crane on the Run by Linda A Cooney (it only has 3 ratings on GoodReads)

Favorite books read last year?
Highlights of books in 2010: Mistwood by Leah Cypress and Birthmarked by Caragh O'Brien

Favorite books of all time?
That's a little difficult...

What are you reading right now?
Ten Things We Did (and Probably Shouldn't Have) by Sarah Mlynowski

What are you reading next?
Nightspell by Leah Cypress

Favorite book to recommend to an 11-year-old?
Harry Potter! And the Redwall books.

Favorite book to re-read?
The Truth About Forever by Sarah Dessen, The Nature of Jade by Deb Caletti, The Hobbitt by JRR Tolkien

Do you ever smell books?
Yes, but I don't like the smell of really old books because it feels like it fills my lungs with fog.

Do you ever read primary source documents like letters or diaries?
Not really, though I like looking through those things periodically.

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Happy Birthday Number Forty-Five!

Today is former Boston Bruins player Mark Stuart's birthday. This makes me very happy. Stuart was one of my favorite Bruins for the past few years, he's tough and a good player, rarely taking penalties. But sadly, he was traded to the Thrashers earlier this year. But not before I got my Stuart B's jersey! So Happy Birthday Stuart! Though he is number 5 on the Thrashers, I will still think of him as #45.

In other Bruins news, today is a big day for the Black and Gold. Tonight is game 7 of the Bruins/Habs playoff series. We try not to do anything to jinx the B's on game day, so all I will say is that I hope the boys play a good game tonight and come out on top!

In other news, I only have 2 more assignments (for the same class) due and then I am done for the semester. I have both my Weds and Mon classes next week, and then one more Monday class. I probably won't have any time off before my Summer internship starts though, which is a little disappointing, but at least I won't be traveling to Boston every week!

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Blogging as a Means of Procrastination

I can't manage to blog every day, but I can certainly manage to blog when I should be doing homework. It isn't even a difficult assignment. I had to watch 2 movie and a tv show and then write about them. As assignments go, it's definitely on the easy side of the slope. However, because I know the level of effort I have to put into it, it's difficult to actually find that effort, because it's such a small amount. Sigh.
I've also got this voice in the back of my head saying I should ditch everything and go get Chipotle for lunch. I keep shoving this voice aside in hopes that I can convince Mike that Chipotle would be a great Tuesday dinner option. I think it's the guacamole.
For this assignment I chose Easy A, Scott Pilgrim Vs. The World, and Degrassi. I chose a new episode of Degrassi that I hadn't seen yet and I hadn't seen the movies either. I officially really like all of the things I chose though. And I think teenagers would too (part of the assignment). There are always friendships, fights, first loves, maybe second loves, and a lot of drama.

Saturday, April 9, 2011

BEODA continues (BEDA 8-9)

Every other day really seems about all I can manage. I don't know why this is a flaw that I have, but even when I say "OK, have to blog today," it just doesn't happen.

Today is Mike and his friend's Jean Claude Van Damme marathon. Which means I have now watched 4 Van Damme movies in a row. I keep saying "Van Dammit!" in my head, but haven't said this out loud yet, since I think I'm the only one who finds this hilarious. I have used the past few hours to my advantage, reading two books and starting a third. I read Grace by Elizabeth Scott and Where She Went by Gayle Forman (companion to If I Stay). Now I am on Numbers by Rachel Ward. I'd consider this a productive Saturday. Especially since the day also included coaching two of my students, eating Chipotle for lunch, watching the Bruins win today's game, having Tim Thomas set a new league record, and consuming my mandatory NRG Kick Cumbies slush (see, I can't resist them!).

I haven't updated my book review blog in about a week, sadly, but I think sometimes I get in these zones where I don't want to talk about books, I just want to read them. So for now, that's what I'm going to do. I don't write either of these blogs for anyone but myself, so if I don't feel like updating with reviews, I'm not going to force myself. I'm enjoying the books I'm reading and I love that I still get that feeling of extreme satisfaction when I finish the last page of a book. Often, that feeling is also accompanied by sadness and loss if I don't feel ready to leave behind those characters, or even true joy if I feel a character I like has been done right by.

A while ago, on my other blog, I wrote about why I love reading, how it can transport you to anytime in your life, how I can be the same person reading a book that I was years ago reading a book. I've come to understand that this is also why I like driving in my car by myself. Driving in my car (her name is Lyla) today and listening to a song that I remember listening to years ago can make me feel like that person again. I can remember what my life was like at another instance and see it so clearly. Sometimes this doesn't go so well and I am left feeling unstable and emotional, part of me aching for that time to be back again, and part of me is amazed at how similar or different I am as a person when compared to then.

Thursday, April 7, 2011

I Should Learn By Now (BEDA 6-7)

I think this is quickly becoming Blog Every Other Day in April. Sad, but true. I get too distracted by things during the day and then I just plain forget to blog. Or I remember and it's already past midnight so I decide to wait anyways.

Yesterday was filled with school, skating, and watching dreadful movies like Butchered and Dark Corners. Though I kind of liked Dark Corners. Thora Birch was in it, and I like her. She isn't obnoxious like a lot of actors are, and she's very pretty. We were at a friend's house watching these movies and we got home at about midnight. At which point Mike and I were so tired that we fell asleep on top of the covers with our jeans and both lights on. I woke up at 6 am and was very confused by this. I don't know how we both managed to fall asleep with all the lights on, they are seriously bright.

After falling back asleep at 6, we then managed to sleep until 1 pm. I really don't know how we let these things happen. Thursday is our slacker day though, since I have the whole day off and Mike works from home at 3. So sleeping for 12 hours works out well. To make up for being such a slacker, I walked 3 miles and played Just Dance 2 on the wii and did a dance workout video from On Demand.

Other than that, I've filled the day with reading. I am currently reading Red Riding Hood by Sarah Blakley-Cartwright, based on the screenplay by David Leslie Johnson. The previews for the movie gave me no desire to run out and see it. But then I saw the book, and thought it might be good. Then I realized the book was written after the movie. I am about halfway through and can't decide if I actually am enjoying what I'm reading. And I still don't have the desire to see the movie. Though I probably will.

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Oops! (BEDA # 4-5)

I completely forgot to blog last night. Oops!

Yesterday, Monday, was a pretty good day. I worked a little and then went to a friend's house for dinner, book discussions, and blog preparations. We're starting a new blog project together soon, and preparations are going a little slow, mostly because we get distracted and start talking about books and looking on Amazon. I feel so lucky to have people in my life that I can talk to about books and know that they understand exactly how I feel when I'm talking about why I did or didn't like a particular book that I've read.

Now I keep getting distracted by that Four of a Kind show on Lifetime, about the identical quadruplets.

It would be a lot easier to blog everyday if there were interesting things going on in my life. But really, my weeks all look pretty much the same. Not in a bad way, just in a very routine way. Today, Tuesday, I get to hang around the house by myself for about half the day, which is nice because when there are 3 people, there isn't a lot of "home alone' time. This is how I get to be distracted by Lifetime TV shows.

Now to continue on with my Me Time and read Deb Caletti's new book, Stay.

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Cumberland Farms Chill Zone: Or, Why The World Is Good (BEDA 3)

The best thing about my apartment is its proximity to a Cumbies. I can see the Cumbies from my living room and it's about a 30 second walk across the street to get there. The only goods I purchase there are blue Powerade and Chill Zone slush. My favorite frozen flavor is the "NRG Kick" pink one that has a pink tornado as the mascot. The right amount of sugar, caffeine, and tornado flavor. I can't really describe the flavor, because it doesn't taste like any other drink, but if I'm in a bad mood, this drink kicks its butt.

The people who work at this Cumbies also add to its greatness. I don't know where this mix of people comes from, but some of the strangest (though very nice!) people I've ever encountered work there. There's the guy who tells you your total in cents: "That will be two-hundred-fifteen pennies." The woman that has a story for every item you buy: "Oh, cookies? I've made cookies before." The younger guy that looks about 50% employee, 50% shoplifter. The younger girl that judges your purchases: "It takes a real guy to come here to buy tampons" (I think Mike should have responded with, "Oh these? They're for me"). I absolutely love going into Cumbies just for the interactions with the employees. You never know what they're going to say to you or what items of yours they are going to judge you for.

In other news, today was no different than any other Sunday, really. I went to the rink to coach, went to Barnes and Nobles to feed my book habit, and have had 2 of the aforementioned Chill Zone slushes. Now I am settling in for a night of reading The Iron Queen by Julie Kagawa and watching the Lord of the Rings movies, per Mike's request. To me this is actually a perfectly wonderful Sunday.

Saturday, April 2, 2011

Unnecessary Introductions (aka BEDA # 2)

The Basics: I love to read and I love to write. Those are probably the two most important things to know. I like a lot of other things too, but I tend to change my mind a lot and nothing else is really as consistent as these two things.

Hopefully there will be some interesting things happening in my life this month, but if not, I might end up resorting to some really cliche ways of getting words on paper (or blog). If you'd like to check out my book review blog, here is the link: Someone Like Samantha

This is a book/reading survey that I took almost 2 years ago. A lot of the answers have actually changed, but if I keep any, I'll put them in quotations.

1. What author do you own the most books by?
I don't know if I should be proud of this... but, Caroline B. Cooney. I own about 16 of her books. When I was in middle school she was just about the only author to be found in the YA section of Barnes & Noble and I ate that stuff up. As well as Lurlene McDaniel... Sigh.

2. What book do you own the most copies of?
1984 by George Orwell... The first 3 Harry Potters... Selected Poems by TS Eliot

3. Did it bother you that both those questions ended with prepositions?
No, I was more bothered by the number of Caroline B Cooney books in my possession.

4. What fictional character are you secretly in love with?
Prince Brigan from Fire by Kristin Cashore, and Prince Ash from the Iron Fey series by Julie Kagawa. The Tin Woodman from The Wonderful Wizard of Oz by L Frank Baum.

5. What book have you read the most times in your life (excluding picture books read to children; i.e., Goodnight Moon does not count)?
Dreamland by Sarah Dessen, Nature of Jade by Deb Caletti, The Catcher in the Rye by JD Salinger

6. What was your favorite book when you were ten years old?
The Rosy Cole books by Sheila Greenwald, Samantha on Stage by Susan Farrar

7. What is the worst book you've read in the past year?
Answer from 2 years ago:
"The Time Traveler's Wife. Everyone said I would love it and so on, and I read it and the guy, Henry, just had no appealing qualities as a person. So he can time travel, ok, that doesn't make him nice or funny or smart. He was a slutty drunk until he met Clare. And the only things Clare liked about him, were attributes he developed because of her. Henry reminded me of Edward."

Today's answer:
Bleed by Laurie Faria Stolarz or Choker by Elizabeth Woods. Bleed was a bunch of somewhat intertwining stories. Each characters story was really short and didn't have any type of ending, they just went into the next person. I expected there to be some sort of looping back and giving each character more than one chapter, but no. And the book as a whole didn't have any type of ending either. The characters weren't my cup of tea either. As for Choker, I really wanted Zoe to be a real, live, absolutely crazy girl. It would have been so awesome if such a person really existed. But no, Zoe wasn't real, and I knew it the whole time but just kept hoping that I was wrong.

8. What is the best book you've read in the past year?
XVI by Julia Karr, Delirium by Lauren Oliver, Emmy and the Incredible Shrinking Rat by Lynne Jonell

9. If you could force everyone you tagged to read one book, what would it be?
Birthmarked by Caragh O'Brien

10. What book would you most like to see made into a movie?
I don't usually like the movie versions of books, and I am very nervous about the Hunger Games movie... but I think I would like to see a really well done movie of Before I Fall by Lauren Oliver.

11. What book would you least like to see made into a movie?
Graceling and Fire by Kristin Cashore. I love how those books appear in my mind and I would hate for a movie to take that away.

12. Describe your weirdest dream involving a writer, book, or literary character.
Just the other day I dreamed I was actually Katniss Everdeen and was having a conversation with Johanna Mason.

13. What is the most lowbrow book you've read as an adult?
I hope this question isn't implying that YA books are considered "lowbrow" for adults. Anyways, I would have to say the Twilight books.

14. What is the most difficult book you've ever read?
I'm not going off of reading level, but it has been difficult to get through the Lord of the Rings because of all of the description. I love reading it, but sometimes it makes me very tired.

15. What is the most obscure Shakespeare play you've seen?
I think just A Midsummer Night's Dream, which I have seen many times.

16. Do you prefer the French or the Russians?
The Russians.

17. Roth or Updike?
"I've only read bits of both, so... tie?" Sadly, I have done nothing to change this answer.

18. David Sedaris or Dave Eggers?
I love, love David Sedaris.

19. Shakespeare, Milton, or Chaucer?
Chaucer, actually.

20. Austen or Eliot?

21. What is the biggest or most embarrassing gap in your reading?
I haven't read a lot from the 1950s-70s

22. What is your favorite novel?
Dracula by Bram Stoker will probably always be towards the top of the list

23. Play?
"The Glass Menagerie, for no other reason than the memories I have from reading it in class always make me smile." Still true.

24. Poem?
TS Eliot "The Wasteland" and many by EE Cummings

25. Essay?
Not a format I have a favorite in

26. Work of nonfiction?
Persepolis by Marjane Satrapi or Stitches by David Small. Autobiographical comics are my new thing.

27. Who is your favorite writer?
My previous answer was Sarah Dessen, and while I still lover her, I think Maureen Johnson is creeping up on her because of how much she makes me laugh in her novels.

28. Who is the most overrated writer alive today?
Probably Stephenie Meyer

29. What is your desert island book?
I think I would choose the Lord of the Rings, the big copy that has all 3 in one.

30. And... what are you reading right now?
The Iron Queen (Iron Fey #3) by Julie Kagawa.

Friday, April 1, 2011

BEDA Day One

I only just decided to participate in BEDA about five minutes ago. Things like this always happen as a spur of the moment type thing. The first year I participated in NaNoWriMo, I didn't decide to do it until the 3rd day in. Apparently writing is the only thing I can manage to do spontaneously.
This will be a short post, as I have a wedding to go to in a few short hours and have to start getting ready. Maybe this is more of a Day 1, Part 1 post, and Day 1 version 2.0 will come up later this evening.
I wanted to make this blog separate from my book review blog, since I would like to keep that one strictly for book reviews. I'll tell a bit more about myself in 1(2) later tonight!