Friday, August 29, 2014

Oh Hey Friday!

oh Friday! Finally you're back! and for a LONG weekend + a week long vacation = I can't complain.
When I was in Florida a couple weekends ago my Stepmom made this really yummy syrup for our waffles - it was so good I practically licked the plate. So I asked her what it was and she told me it was something she found on Pinterest (duh.) and I ended up making it myself this weekend and it was the bomb diggity. It's a buttermilk syrup (buttermilk, vanilla, sugar, butter and baking soda = heaven). If you have a mouth and stomach you HAVE to try it.

Troy and I are due to head on a vacation next week. I'm SUPER excited. I love our vacation time together. It's nice to be away from everyday life/stresses and just relax and not worry. If you saw my Monday post you know I NEEEED this vacation
I'm so happy to report that I finished my book challenge this year! The first time in two years and I'm actually AHEAD of schedule!
I said I would only read 13 books this year (I figured about one a month) but this year I'm a roll! I know 13 books probably sounds really low but I'm proud of myself!

My mom is making bracelets. She's given me two over the past two weeks. The blue one matches my work colors perfectly. Pure coincidence. And I love it!

This number 5 has to be the same as #1 because I'm SO excited to getaway next week. This will be my last vacation until 2015 so I will try to enjoy every minute of it!

I hope you have a fantastic weekend and week!


Thursday, August 28, 2014

Book Review ::: Last Sacrifice (Vampire Academy #6)

So I FINALLY picked up the last book of the Vampire Academy Series - And I'm very happy I did!
GoodReads Synopsis:
Rose Hathaway has always played by her own rules. She broke the law when she ran away from St. Vladimir's Academy with her best friend and last surviving Dragomir princess, Lissa. She broke the law when she fell in love with her gorgeous, off-limits instructor, Dimitri. And she dared to defy Queen Tatiana, leader of the Moroi world, risking her life and reputation to protect generations of dhampir guardians to come.

Now the law has finally caught up with Rose - for a crime she didn't even commit. She's in prison for the highest offense imaginable: the assassination of a monarch. She'll need help from both Dimitri and Adrian to find the one living person who can stall her execution and force the Moroi elite to acknowledge a shocking new candidate for the royal throne: Vasilisa Dragomir.

But the clock on Rose's life is running out. Rose knows in her heart the world of the dead wants her back...and this time she is truly out of second chances. The big question is, when your whole life is about saving others, who will save you?
This is book 6 (the final book) of the Vampire Academy and I'm quite pleased with how everything turned out for the characters.
I really love that we get to see more of Rose and Dmitri working together (who doesn't?), I'm glad to see what happens to Lissa (I don't want to give it away - so I won't) and I'm glad how the author "ended" the series (which as you may know she left it pretty open so we can pick up and read more about some of the characters in her other series Bloodlines).
If this is your type of genre and you haven't read these books yet - I highly recommend them! If it's not your normal type of read but you like a strong female lead (but still vulnerable in certain ways) and you like action, and you like a story that grabs you and takes you all over - I still would highly recommend these books! They are a very quick read and you get pulled in rather quickly.
I gave this 4 out of 5 stars.

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

WIP Wednesday ::: Making a Big Girl Version of a Baby Girl Blanket

About 3 years ago I made this baby shower gift for my friend/co-worker and her daughter absolutely LOVES it! Which is AWE-SOME. The total feel good to a project well done.

So last week I get a text message asking if I could make an exact replica of that same baby girl blanket for a twin size bed - which is also AWE-SOME buuuuut I can't remember what yarn I used, what size hook I used and which pattern exactly I used.
I really need to start keeping track of my projects better. I think I'm going to start a notebook for situations just like this. I found this WIP organizer about 7 weeks ago but I think today I will be starting it!
So I THINK I found the colors to match the yarn I used 3 years ago:
and I'm guessing I used a 5.5mm or 6.0mm hook.

What do you think? How do you keep track of your projects? Do you think my colors match enough?

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Teaser Tuesday ::: Last Sacrifice (Vampire Academy #6)

Teaser Tuesday is a weekly bookish meme, 
hosted by MizB of Should be Reading.
"You'll be alive," he pointed out. "That's what matters. Enjoy what you have, every little detail of wherever you are. Don't focus on where you aren't."
I love this line. I think it's great advice we can all apply to our own lives. What do you think?

Monday, August 25, 2014

Monday Morning Coffee

Good Morning!
I hope you had a fantastical weekend!
I have to tell you my morning is already filled with STRESS. I'm thinking a virtual coffee will help settle me down.
Yesterday I got a missed call from my lender and an email telling me that we need to take care of some things. YIKES. That sent my stomach up right thru my throat. Apparently the underwriter of my loan took away some of my reported income which throws off my ratios and puts my loan in harms way. I think we got everything figured out but I definitely have the BGs.
What's stressing you this Monday morning?

I don't normally do two post in one day ... but when I do I hope you read/comment on them both! My second post today is a book review on What She Left Behind. Check it out.
What are you reviewing/reading this week?
Last week I had a work event that I was DREADING to go to but it ended up being REALLY fun. It was the August Social - Lobster bake. I OF COURSE had to take my Lobstah Selfie:

Don't you love when things turn out better in real life than what you imagined in your mind?

I survived my babysitting gig this weekend. My friend Stephanie asked me to babysit even before she gave birth to her little guy. I have been nervous for weeks! I had never watched a 1 month old before but he was a good little guy and we both made it out in good shape (thanks to my mom tagging along and for helping me!).
Do you want me to come over and watch your little one? LOL.
I have stress and anxiety running thru my body - head to toe. I hope I make it thru this week in one piece.
Any tips on how to relieve some stress?

I hope you have a great week and thanks for having coffee with me!

{Audio} Book Review ::: What She Left Behind

I was so excited to read this book when I stumbled across it:
GoodReads Synopsis:

Ten years ago, Izzy Stone’s mother fatally shot her father while he slept. Devastated by her mother’s apparent insanity, Izzy, now seventeen, refuses to visit her in prison. But her new foster parents, employees at a local museum, have enlisted Izzy’s help in cataloging items at a long-shuttered state asylum. There, amid piles of abandoned belongings, Izzy discovers a stack of unopened letters, a decades old journal, and a window into her own past.

Clara Cartwright, eighteen years old in 1929, is caught between her overbearing parents and her love for an Italian immigrant. Furious when she rejects an arranged marriage, Clara’s father sends her to a genteel home for nervous invalids. But when his fortune is lost in the stock market crash, he can no longer afford her care—and Clara is committed to the public asylum.

Even as Izzy deals with the challenges of yet another new beginning, Clara’s story keeps drawing her into the past. If Clara was never really mentally ill, could something else explain her own mother’s violent act? Piecing together Clara’s fate compels Izzy to re-examine her own choices—with shocking and unexpected results.
In case you missed it - my Teaser Tuesday post
My Thoughts:
I liked it. I liked the story. I like the alternating character chapters. I liked that it was two different time periods. I found the setting, characters and all that jazz very interesting.  My ONLY hang up is I wish I read the book instead of audiobooking it. I didn't enjoy the narrator. She annoyed me. And I think I would've been better off imagining Izzy's voice and Clara's voice instead of listening to it. Other than the narrator and the ending that you can pretty much predict - it's a good read.
If you liked Orphan Train you'll probably really like this.
I say: Read it.
4 out of 5 stars.

Friday, August 22, 2014

It's Friday!

I've seen Jenn do this post a couple times and it totally sparked my interest so I'm joining in!
Plus it's been a long time since my last post so it'll be a good way to catch you up!
It's been an BUSY August. I drove up to Pittsburgh to see my girls (my lil sisters) M&C. They are so flipping cute. I love any moment I get to see them. We had a fun Pittsburgh day eating at Pamela's (yummy pancakes), hitting the Carnegie Library (yes, going to the library is considered fun) and heading over to Randyland to see this guy's fantastical garden/masterpiece.

they have "filled" pancakes here. yums!

Randyland - with Randy mid stroke!

My Pittsburgh trip was on Sunday. Two days later I flew down to Florida to see the girls again. This time for a full week of family and sunshine. EXCEPT it rained most of my time down there. But spending a week with a 9 year old and 12 year old - just straight up comedy. I think I have the same sense of humor as my 9 year old sister. I don't know what that says about me (or what it says about her).

I did get a bunch of reading done on my vacation: Last Sacrifice, Bloodlines, and What She Left Behind. Reviews coming for all. I can go ahead and tell you that I do recommend all three of them.

my reading buddy: M reading a Nuclear Physics book for "fun"
my other reading buddy...C...altho she was probably just playing a game.

While I was down in Florida I saw that the blanket I made for them is unraveling! Hello Nightmare! I will never do a "magic ring" start ever again. If you are a hooker - I recommend you never do it either. I didn't take a picture of the damage. I'm too hurt to even look at it. Instead of fixing it I think I'm just going to make them a second blanket. While I was there I witnessed 3/4 family members use it - so I know it's something they like.
Have a good weekend.
That's all. Simple.

Monday, August 4, 2014

Being a Tourist is Painful

Hey Folks!
So this weekend I pulled out my binoculars, put on my best fanny pack, Hawaiian print shirt, black socks and sandals and headed down to Washington, DC with my cousin and buddy to take in the sites. 
We walked all over the place - from the Jefferson Memorial, to the Lincoln Memorial, to the Martin Luther King Memorial, to the Roosevelt Memorial and to TWO Smithsonian Museums. My body hurts.
Being a tourist is painful.
My cousin came into town from Pittsburgh, and my buddy Marie came into town from Delaware for and we hopped on the metro and into the city to take in the sites:


It was a cloudy, overcast day but I think all my pics turned out really neat looking and we didn't sweat our balls off like you typically do when you see the sites in DC.
Great day. But the bottoms of my feet are still sore and my legs are killing me.
Maybe it's a sign I should start working out again.
Maybe not.
How was your weekend?