Sunday, December 30, 2012

Book Review: Where'd You Go Bernadette? by Maria Semple

This was the second book I read on my holidays and found it very entertaining!  Maria wrote this book in an unusual style and it totally worked.  You get the complete picture of Bernadette, not from her, but from all the people around her, i.e. her daughter, friends, enemies, etc.

The story is technically about a woman who is having a bit of a meltdown physiologically and would normally not be a lighthearted situation but because you get to 'see' the perspective from all people watching this breakdown happening it puts it in a totally different light.  The author should get a lot of credit in how she wrote this book and how entertaining she made it and ultimately a great read!

I hope you enjoy reading this book!

Thursday, December 27, 2012

Book Review: The Chaperone by Laura Moriarty

I have done a lot of reading so far on my holidays.  The first book I finished was The Chaperone by Laura Moriarty.  Very good read!

For some reason when I read the book jacket I thought the book was going to be more about the girl she was chaperoning, because she is based on a real life person, but interesting enough it really is the story about the chaperone. 

I found her life story utterly fascinating and enchanting.  She was a woman who lived in difficult circumstances in a time when people were not understanding and compassionate and she was determined to live the best life she could and not just survive but thrive in those circumstances.

This book also covers her whole life which I enjoy.  Often books end as soon as the main issue is resolved or once someone gets married, has a child, etc. but I love it when I can get the whole picture to a story and see someone's whole life. 

I highly recommend this book and know you will enjoy reading The Chaperone!

Friday, November 30, 2012

Happy Friday!

Here are some random shots to help you enjoy this fabulous Friday even more!

I love these colours and think they are the most comfortable colours for decorating with.

This is my favorite mug right now.  My dear friend bought it for me and every time I make tea I think of her now!  What a great gift for someone.

This is me - can't you tell!  Just kidding!  My 10 year old niece made this picture of me using an app she just loves.  She is such an artist and loves to create, especially fashion and so she designed this outfit for me.  Don't I look glamorous!

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Book Review: The Last Juror by John Grisham

I'm going to openly admit that I am a John Grisham fan.  I am behind in reading his latest books but other than the last couple I have read all his books...fiction and non-fiction.  Don't know what it is but I always enjoy him.  His books are usually about the legal community and based in the deep south which would seem like it would get old, but I still keep coming back for more and more!  I even work in the legal community so you would think that I would be totally sick of it and not want to read about it...again, wrong!

The Last Juror was shorter than his normal books but I found there was still lots of story in it and great character development.  Based on how the cover described the book it was not exactly as I expected...yes, that means there is drama!  But amongst all the drama there is wonderfully written characters and you discover a very likable little town (despite all its nuances and quirks). 

The ending was not what I expected and I totally love that.  I love it when a book keeps you on your toes so that even when you try to predict what will happen you are mostly wrong.

Do you like reading pop fiction like John Grisham?  I recommend The Last Juror - go read it!

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Nope, not gonna happen

I recently picked up the book Phantom by Jo Nesbo from my local library and I just can't finish reading it.  I HATE it when a book doesn't do it for me but I'm giving up on this one.  It is supposed to be a suspense mystery with an interesting premise but I found the writing so confusing.  Most of the time it was from the perspective of the villian which prohibited me from relating to the main character and getting into the story.

Sorry Phantom - I wanted to love you but it is just not going to happen!

Now, I'm going to go back and finish The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet's Nest...

Sunday, November 18, 2012


I had my best friends over last night for a girl's night and an amazing time.  I'm very grateful to have them in my life.  I'm the kind of person who doesn't have a lot of friends but the ones I have mean so much to me.

I made a variety of appetizers for us to eat and most of them I got the idea from Pinterest.  Check out what I made:

Buffalo Chicken Taquitos

Pizza Cupcakes

And the best was...

Chocolate Chip Dip

It was a fabulous night.  Hope you had a great weekend too!

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Book Review: The Birth House by Ami McKay

I recently finished reading The Birth House by Ami McKay which my chiropractor's office graciously lended to me (thank you Dr. Kim @ Two Rivers Chiropractic!).

It took me almost half way into the book to really get 'into it' but once I did, I was hooked.  This book is set in the early 1900 in eastern Canada (Nova Scotia) and modern medicine is trying to make inroads into the work of the midwives.  I think what was bothering me at first was how disrespected the midwives were back then.  But...have no fear...alls well that ends well!  Many things happen in the book to keep you interested and I was really satisfied with the ending.  I also really enjoyed the style of writing for this first time author.  I would like to read more of her books.

Please go out and get your copy of The Birth House, you won't regret it!

Friday, November 9, 2012

Storms a comin'

So apparently we are in for a huge snowstorm this weekend...

...I better get working on my knitting!  Here are some shots of my pinwheel afghan that I am working on.

I need to make roughly 30 of these pinwheels.  I think I have made 3 so I have lots of work to do!

Have a great weekend everyone!

Thursday, November 8, 2012

Weight Watchers

One of the things that has kept me very busy over the last few months is living on the Weight Watchers plan.  I can't say enough good things about has truly changed my life and I couldn't be happier.  I reached my goal weight, went on maintenance and obtained my lifetime membership!  This may not sound like much, since I didn't have that much weight to loose, but it is still hard work.  I am so thankful that I have found balance in my eating again and am able to enjoy my body so much more.  The only issue I am now facing, is my crazy desire to shop, shop and shop some more!  I want all new clothes!  All I can say, is I love you Old Navy, especially for your online sales when a girl needs some new clothes!

Monday, November 5, 2012

The Good Wife

Well the last few months have been crazy, to say the least.  One of the things I did this past weekend was finish catching up on my favorite TV shows.  That leads me to the title of this post - The Good Wife.  What an amazing show.  I can't get over how different and interesting each episode is...and don't even get me started on the writing and acting.  I think every actor and character on that show (main or supporting) is so outstanding.  I just love it and wanted to share that with you.  If you don't watch The Good Wife, please do.  You won't regret it!

Monday, September 24, 2012

Update on The Paris Wife

Well, I did finish The Paris Wife, somewhat reluctantly though!

I have to say that it has a ending that leaves you feeling satisfied and that somehow things ended up as they should (at least from my point of view) so that really helped me feel more positive about this book.

I still felt like I had to force myself to read it because it was somewhat depressing / frustrating at the predictability, but ultimately everything did work and you got to see their lives 30 years in the future.  I love seeing how people 'turn out' way in the future from where a book leaves off.  Just gives me such a complete feeling about the story.

So I would have to say my feelings on this book did improve but it is still not one of my favorites.

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

The Paris Wife by Paula McLean

I am currently on vacation with my family - I promise lots of photos when I get back.

In the meantime, I started reading The Paris Wife by Paula McLean and am feeling quite disappointed.  I have heard many good things about this book and was really looking forward to reading it.  I am about half way through am I am finding it very predictable so far.

Has anyone else read this book?  Is it going to get better?

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

Book Review: The Lord God Bird by Russell Hill

I have been reading up a storm lately and so I am going to try and catch up with all my reviews!

The Lord God Bird is a really sweet different story.  The book is not long so you don't need to feel intimidated by it.  I personally had never heard of these birds before (I assume that they are real???) but in the book they are viewed as extinct and is a really big deal with this man sees one.  Then the story is about how the media gets involved and needs to report on the sighting of this bird and scientists get involved and need to study this bird, etc.  The author also does something interesting when he writes some chapters from the bird's perspective.  This may sound weird, I know, and I was skeptical...but I did find it endearing. 

I recommend this book and think you won't regret reading it!  Enjoy!

Friday, August 17, 2012

Fill in the Blank Friday

Thanks for Lauren for Fill in the Blank Friday:

1. The best thing to do on a hot day is to find somewhere cool to be (if necessary inside) and read a book.
2. The best place to be on a hot day is where ever you can feel cool.
3. The best thing to eat on a hot day is ice cream!
4. Hot days make me tired cause we have lots of humidity and it makes me sloth like!
5. My go to uniform on a warm summer day is hmmm...not sure, probably a shirk with a loose shirt.
6. The scent that reminds me of summer is suntan lotion.
7. My favorite thing about summer is the long evenings and getting to go to Clear Lake, Manitoba.

Wanna play?

Sunday, August 12, 2012

Book Review: Dune Road by Jane Green

I just finished reading Dune Road this morning and I enjoyed it.  I have never read a book by Jane before and I honestly can't remember how I heard about this book.  Light story, interesting characters and lots of goings on.  I found it to be a fast read but refreshing and I suggest reading it.  The easiest way for me to describe it is a story about many characters living in a small town close to New York.  Some of the people work together, some are friends, family, lovers, etc.  There is a little bit of romance, suspense and drama - something for everyone!  Happy reading!

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

For the Love of Tea!

I realized lately that I haven't shared much of another love I have:  tea!  I'm not a coffee drinker but I do love a good cuppa'.

A few of my favorites are:

Black Tea: Earl Grey (but it has to be Twinings)

Green Tea:  Royal Garden from Cornelia Bean. Here are the ingredients...yum...Green tea, currants, black currants, elderberries, blackberries, raspberries, strawberry bits, flavour!

Rooibos Tea:  This is tough for me because this is my favorite type of tea:  Jessie's Tea from David's Tea, (FYI Bear Trap and Paradise Found are really great too)

Organic Tea:  This one is amazing: Midsummer's Night Dream from David's Tea

I would also like to give an honourable mention to Starbucks tea - I enjoy most of their flavors and love that they make loose tea in tea bags.  If you are on a tea budget, this tea is really yummy and afordable:  Mulled Apple from PC

I also love collecting tea pots.  I have several in my kitchen which you can see below:

Japanese style with matching cups!

Classic White

Clear - for flowering teas

Perfect single cup - the cup in on the bottom!

Rustic / old fashion looking

Monday, August 6, 2012

Book Review: The Shoemaker's Wife by Adriana Trigiani

I just finished reading the most amazing book - The Shoemaker's Wife.  I absolutely LOVED it.  If you love character stories that center on their whole lives you will love this book too.  I feel like this is the best book I have read since The Help.

The story is about a boy and a girl and their whole lives.  Sounds simple, I know but it is not.  They meet when the are children, are separated, meet again when they are adults, are separated and meet again later and...wait I better not give it away!  The book starts off in Italy and then into America and keeps moving.  I just love the character development in this book and kept thinking throughout that I wish I knew these actual people.

Well, I hope I have whetted your appetite because I highly recommend this book!

Friday, July 20, 2012

Post Love / Positive Self Image

I just read this post on Katie's blog:  High Heels & Bubblegum and I think it is so important for all woman to read and think about this.  Now I am the first to admit that I don't have the greatest self image but I am getting better in my 'old age' - haha!  But regardless, we all have bad days where we need these reminders.  Please go check it out at: Positive Self Image

Have a great positive weekend everyone!

Thursday, July 19, 2012

Book Review: The Face of A Stranger by Anne Perry

I have been trying to finish this book for a very long time (you may have noticed how long it has been in my reading list) because I found it very slow.  The premise of the book really intrigued me: detective looses his memory; goes back to work and is thrown into a murder mystery all while trying to remember who he is and what his life is about. 

Sounds pretty good right? 

Well, this book was okay, just very slow. It is a rather large book (for a mystery) and I found parts simply boring but I was kept interested just enough that I needed to know 'who did it'.  It is set in the early 1900s and is considered a Victorian Mystery.  I did enjoy reading about how they solve murders when they have no modern day technology and following along their train of thoughts when again, they have no database to look up in a computer, etc.

While I don't recommend this book per se, I'm glad that I finished it.  The mystery was solved and life can go back to normal now!

Have you ever read Anne Perry?

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Banana Bread Recipe - so yummy

I have a new favorite banana bread recipe that I got from the Dancing Cook on with a few of my changes.  It is healthy and yummy...enjoy!


  1. Preheat oven to 350 degrees.  If using a dark coated pan, bake at 325 degrees and bake a little longer.
  2. Mash bananas, add Splenda and mix.
  3. Mix in rest of indgredients.  Don't over mix.
  4. Pour ingredients into a bread pan sprayed with non-stick spray.
  5. Bake for 50 to 60 minutes; cake tester should come out clean when done.
  6. Remove from pan and cool on a wire rack.

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Lovely Evening

We had our best friends over for dinner last night and it was so wonderful.  Sometimes I feel like so many of us go to way too much work when we have people over..but not me.  I make the simplest dinner (spaghetti) and desert (cake and ice cream) but we had the best time.

Their oldest son brought me these flowers!  Isn't he the sweetest?!!!

                      Austin - you are the best!

Thursday, July 12, 2012

Current Knitting Project

I am going to make these dish cloths for my friend as a house warming gift:

It is a pattern from Lion Brand, however I purchased Bernat cotton to make them.

Bernat Handicrafter Cotton
  • Natural, soft absorbent cotton
  • Most popular yarn weight—knitting worsted
  • Ideal for knit, crochet, & craft projects
  • Easy care, easy use
  • Known for its exceptional quality and colors

Do Not Bleach. Do Not Iron / Press. Do Not Dry-Clean. Extract Excess Water, Dry Flat. Machine wash, water not exceeding 30 degrees Celcius, delicate/gentle setting
Care: Machine dryable  Machine washable  
The colours I choose are: Indigo, Country Red, Sage Green and Hot Purple!  My friend's kitchen is black and white so I thought a variety of colours would be nice.