Friday, January 23, 2015

Celebrate the Small Things - Art edition


Well, I made it through the first week of classes!  Yay!  I'm tired and I'm seriously worried about losing my voice, but it's been a good week.  I really love this part of the semester--a new crop of bright, shiny faces, eager to dive in to the course material.  Even better, we're still in the honeymoon phase--the students don't hate me yet, because their first exam is still a few weeks away. :)

This weekend, I'm celebrating Date Night! Mister and I are going to one of those 'Anyone Can Paint' places, and we'll see if their premise holds up.  I have no illusions as to my artistic abilities (I know which end of the paintbrush to use, but that's about it), so I'm eager to see how things turn out.  I think Mister will create a decent picture--he's more artistic than he likes to acknowledge.  Either way, I'm sure the experience will be a fun one!

How was your week?  Any big plans for the weekend?

If you've been reading my blog, you know that Fridays are reserved for a post where I celebrate the little things that have happened during the week. This is a blog hop created by Vikki and now hosted by Lexa Cain, and it's one of my favorite blogging things to do.  I encourage you to check out her blog and the full list of participants, because who doesn't love reading about good things?

Monday, January 19, 2015

Books Go To the Movies - American Sniper

I should start off by saying that it's been a while since I read this book--a little over a year, if memory serves me correctly.  Well before I knew there was a movie in the works.  Having said that, I remember feeling slightly let down when I finished the book.  Chris Kyle's story is compelling, to be sure, but I had hoped the book would offer a bit more in the way of introspection.  It felt a little superficial to me, and I don't know if that's because Mr. Kyle honestly did not lean towards navel-gazing, or if he chose not to include those thoughts in his book. Either way, I walked away with an impression that he was a very black and white individual.  There's nothing wrong with that, and I can understand how that mindset can be protective for those who are sent to war.  I will never pretend to know what it is to serve in a war zone, and those who do have my respect.  Still, I found it difficult to connect with Mr. Kyle while reading his book.

The movie, on the other hand, does a nice job of breathing life into his story.  This is one of the few times where I felt the movie was better than the book.  By fleshing out the events of the book, we see the struggles and dangers he and his men faced, and I was better able to understand some of his choices.  Bradley Cooper is outstanding, and his performance gives Mr. Kyle a dimensionality I thought the book lacked.  What was most heartbreaking for me was the last half hour of the movie.  Chris Kyle has come home from the war, this time for good. He struggles a bit to find his place, but once he does, he seems to be settling into life with his family.  I say seems to be because once again, it is difficult to tell if he is truly happy, or if he is just trying to make the best of his situation.  Regardless, his work with other veterans appears to give him the sense of purpose that had eluded him since returning.  It is during this time that he is most present with his family, especially his children.  And it is during this time, when he should be safe from the dangers of war, that he is once again taken from them.

Overall, this was an intense film with several sequences that were difficult to watch.  I definitely think it does justice to the book.  But I'm interested in your thoughts.  Have you read the book or seen the movie (or both)?  What did you think?

Friday, January 16, 2015

Celebrate the Small Things -- Thawing out edition


You really have to love Fridays--it's the last day of the traditional work week, and the weekend looms ahead, a stretch of time that is totally yours, burgeoning with possibility.  What better day to celebrate the little things that happened during the week?

Today, I'm celebrating a turn in the weather. While we haven't had the terrible winter weather of other, more northern, states, we have had our share of cold temperatures and gray days.  But that all changes this weekend!  The sun is supposed to come out, and our temps are supposed to rise into the 60's!  It will be a nice change from the past two weeks, when we didn't have any sun.

I'm also celebrating the fact that Mister and I are making progress on Baby Munchkin's nursery.  We have a long way to go yet, but we'll get there one step at a time!

What are you celebrating this week?

If you've been reading my blog, you know that Fridays are reserved for a post where I celebrate the little things that have happened during the week. This is a blog hop created by Vikki and now hosted by Lexa Cain, and it's one of my favorite blogging things to do.  I encourage you to check out her blog and the full list of participants, because who doesn't love reading about good things?

Thursday, January 15, 2015

Happy Day!


On this day 6 years ago (I can't believe it's been that long!) I brought home two furry little ones from the local animal shelter. They were terribly shy and deeply mistrustful.  As they'd spent the majority of their 9 months on earth in a cage, I couldn't really blame them.  Gradually, they came out of their shells, and though they still refuse to sit on my lap or let me pick them up, they show their affection in their own special way.

Except to Mister.

While they will sleep on his clothes, his pillow, even his shoes, they draw the line at letting him pet them unless the circumstances are truly dire (i.e. I'm out of town).  Still, we do all get along :)

Happy adoption day, boys!  I'm so glad you picked me!

From the shelter...
To the counter.  Still inseparable :)

Do you have any pets?  How did they find you?

Sunday, January 4, 2015

Sunday Sights...

Here are some pictures from New Orleans!  Mister and I really enjoyed the weekend, and we would definitely go back (just not during Mardi Gras--we're not big on crowds).
The French Quarter was all decked out in holiday finery.
Lots of fun signs on Bourbon Street
I wonder what this place sells? ;)
Lots of random decoration on the sidewalks.
After a long day, we relaxed at the world famous...
So there you have it!  Overall, a very nice weekend.  Have you been to New Orleans?  What was your favorite thing to do/see/experience there?

Thursday, January 1, 2015

Happy New Year!

www.123rf.com
Happy New Year!  Last year was great, but I know this year will be even better!  I have a new release coming in May, and I'll let you know as soon as I get a release date for book 5!  Thanks so much for all of your support last year--I hope you'll keep reading in 2015!

Wednesday, December 31, 2014

How do you celebrate?

www.123rf.com
Happy New Year's Eve!  What are you up to tonight?  Going out to a party? Staying in with friends and family?  Whatever you do, I hope you have a great time!  Stay safe out there!