Archive | December 2012

Happy 2013!

It’s about that time.

New Year’s Eve! Although we can’t really ring in 2013 without Dick Clark. I’m pretty sure that it won’t be the same. So the Mayans were sort of right, right?

I mean, if we can’t call it 2013 (which we can’t without Dick Clark there to officially proclaim it), then it’s close enough to being the end of the world 😉 You don’t have to agree, just let me have it.

People do that whole resolutions thing about this time of the year. I try, from time to time, but let’s face it. I don’t stick to that stuff. Mostly cause my goals are nebulous and unrealistic. Besides. I’m perfect!


Yeah, I can own it.

But I do have things I want to accomplish in 2013. So after many years of refusing to set myself year long goals that I know I won’t stick to, I’m sticking my toes in again.

So here we go!

1) I will walk no less than four days a week, anywhere from 2.5 to 5 miles.

I know that this seems like a very specific sort of thing, but it’s way better for me than “exercise”. Because the word exercise is yucky. Even thinking about it makes me think of about a hundred other things I could be doing than getting sweaty and out of breath. Not to mention the fact that I know full well what I look like when I try to “exercise”. So thank you, but no. We’ll go walkies.

2) I will write, daily, for at least an hour.

Blogging and twitter totally don’t count. Cause if Twitter counted, I’d be freaking Stephen King by now. Since I clearly am not, I should probably focus on the real writing, huh?

3) I will finish the rough draft of my novel by the end of June.

That gives me six more months to finish that nonsense. Which is good, cause what I’ve already written really needs some adjusting.

4) Play more video games!

Well it doesn’t really have to be more video games… Mostly just have more fun. Unwind more. I know it’s hard to believe, but I can sometimes get a little uptight and too wrapped up in details. I stress. So remembering to let go and loosen up a bit now and then is a good thing!

That’s it, really. Four things that I am fairly certain I can accomplish. Winning the lottery and stalking Chris Evans can wait for another year. Baby steps people. I mean if the lottery and Chris Evans happen to fall into my lap this year, I won’t complain or anything.



This is so right!

Kristen Lamb's Blog

Screen Shot 2012-12-24 at 9.22.47 AM

One of my all-time favorite movies for the holidays is The Muppets Christmas Carol. I believe I’ve seen this movie a few hundred times. I’ve worn out three VHS tapes and at least three DVDs. I play the movie over and over, mainly because, well, duh,  MUPPETS! But, Muppets aside, also I can’t get enough of the music. Also, I love the story of A Christmas Carol no matter how many times I see it, no matter how many renditions, and I am certainly not alone. Charles Dicken’s story of a redeemed miser is a staple for holiday celebrations around the world and across the generations.

This story is virtually synonymous with “Christmas,” but why is it such a powerful story? Why has it spoken so deeply to so many? Why is it a story that never grows old? Today, I want to talk about a couple of the…

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It’s the end of the world as we know it…

So today is supposed to be the end of the world. Yeah, I’ve heard that before.

The world was supposed to end on my 16th birthday. Didn’t happen.

Then there was all this bruhaha about the world ending today, the solstice (happy solstice btw), because the Mayan calendar ended today. Clearly it was some sort of message!

Umm. Yeah. The message was: My arms are tired from chiseling all this into stone. I’m done now. You guys can chisel your own shit for the next 2000 years, you lazy bitches.

At least, that’s what I got out of it.

There is one alternate explanation, though.

It’s entirely possible that today is the day that I get my long-coveted Phoenix Powers. Oh yeah. It’ll happen one day. I just know it. I figure I’m far more stable than Jean Grey, simply because I don’t pine after Scott “I’m a whingy bitch” Summers. Thus, I’d be a far more suitable choice for absolute power.


There are some who believe that I would go Dark Phoenix in the blink of an eye and destroy the planet. Now, I know this would never happen, however, since there are some who think it, that could be the hidden meaning behind the end of the world nonsense!

I suggested this to AE (the bff from high school).

Her response should leave no questions as to which camp she falls into…

Me: I know why people think the world is ending today! I get my phoenix powers! I just know it!

AE: Um. Yeah. I hate to be the one to tell you this… But perhaps you should sit down…

Me: Wha?? No phoenix powers?

AE: So the Mayans had a carving. There was this woman riding a beast with wheels. Another person riding a beast with wheels angered her. The woman riding the beast with wheels destroyed the other person in a firey ugly way. There’s also a carving of a Mayan god shaking his finger as if to say “Nuh uh, no, no, no!” Close ups of the carving show that the woman’s beast with wheels had a little Mazda symbol on it. I’m not making any judgement calls. Just saying.

*sigh* I’m really sort of crushed. I thought for sure that today would be the day. But here it is, 7pm and still no alien symbiosis granting me absolute power.

Maybe on 11-12-13!

Flawed – Kate Avelynn

View the details here.

So this is a different sort of situation for me. The very awesome Heather Riccio (whom I’ve recently started stalking following like a puppy on Twitter) asked for volunteers to read a review copy of Flawed by Kate Avelynn and review it. Who can say no to something totally, awesomely cool like THAT?

I know that I was all serious yesterday and had vowed to be back to my normal irreverence today, but we’re going to have to set that aside for next time. flawedCause oh em gee.

Usually, I take my time reading, cause I have other stuff going on. There’s work, there’s hanging with A, housework, whatever. I recognize that reading is a leisure activity that sometimes has to be put on hold for more grown-up things. Yeah. Not this time. A was understanding about my total neglect last night, even as he was gently pulling me away from my computer and making me get ready for bed so that I wouldn’t fall over today.

I got to work today, promptly picked up where I left off last night when the sleeps had to happen, and sat with my jaw on my chest until I finished. Then I sat for another ten minutes or so processing.

In short, I was stunned.

I don’t usually give a book my “Zomgz amazerful!” rating. Which is not to say that I don’t love most of the books I read. I do. Like snuggle and smooch them, love. But it’s rare that a book hits me as viscerally as this one did.

So. Let’s get on with the whys and wherefores!

Book blurb:

Sarah O’Brien is alive because of the pact she and her brother made twelve years ago — James will protect her from their violent father if she promises to never leave him. For years, she’s watched James destroy his life to save hers. If all he asks for in return is her affection, she’ll give it freely.

Until, with a tiny kiss and a broken mind, he asks for more than she can give.

Sam Donavon has been James’ best friend — and the boy Sarah’s had a crush on — for as long as she can remember. As their forbidden relationship deepens, Sarah knows she’s in trouble. Quiet, serious Sam has decided he’s going to save her. Neither of them realizes James is far more unstable than her father ever was, or that he’s not about to let Sarah forget her half of the pact…

This is a GREAT blurb, btw. When Heather sent it to me asking if it was something I would be interested in, I was like OMG GIVE IT!! (Stealing borrowing @Fizzygrrl‘s grabby hands gif.)

Borrwed from GO THERE!

Borrowed from GO THERE!

The good:

The writing is amazing. Like seriously, I want to be this awesome. Kate, like so many of the people I follow on Twitter, is just disgustingly talented and I WANT TO BE THAT GOOD.

Sarah is a brilliant character. She’s so real. She’s brave and strong in ways that no child should ever have to be. Every thought and feeling, all her insecurities and self-doubt. They are so spot on it’s scary. All of the characters are like this.

At several points, I just wanted to shake her and scream. Even though I totally understood why she did the things she did.

I couldn’t put it down. It was fast paced and brutal and didn’t let up the pressure for a second.

The bad:

This part is subjective so I’m throwing it out for those who may take issue. The subject matter is rough. It’s painful. It’s scary as hell. It’s also a stark and tragic reality of life that too many people have to suffer through. It will wring you out emotionally.

I on the other hand, feel that it’s something everyone should be aware of and talk about a hell of a lot more. If I were an English teacher, I’d make this required reading.


I’m still reeling and I finished it about an hour ago. I’m probably going to read my copy again. I will buy it when it comes out.

While it’s tragic and heartbreaking, it’s all about hope. Hope and having the strength to overcome and rise above adversity.

Sandy Hook Shooting

I haven’t said anything about this yet, for many reasons.

Primarily because I just don’t have the words to express my sorrow for these children who will never have the experiences they should have. My sorrow for their families and the families of the teachers who made the ultimate sacrifice one can make for another. Because I don’t want to make their tragedy about anything but their loss.

It still shouldn’t be, but people are right that we need to have a serious conversation.

I read the gut wrenching blog post by The Anarchist Soccer Mom.

Today, I read this post by a psychiatrist.

This is something that hits very close to home for me. I have family with mental illness, some diagnosed and some not. I think to myself “There but for the grace of God.”

Mental illness is very real. It isn’t people looking for attention. Sometimes those behaviors that we dismiss solely as someone being socially awkward or a freak are beyond their control and are cries for help.

Most importantly, mental illness is something that we need to talk about. WE NEED TO. They need to. If you know someone who is or even may be mentally ill, be willing to talk. To listen. To offer help and to push them to get it if they need it.

It isn’t easy and it’s one of those things that “we just don’t talk about”, but it’s long past time.

Mental illness hides. Don’t let it. You could save a life.

My Super Sweet Sixteenth Century – Rachel Harris

View the details here.

I started following the very lovely and totally awesometastic Rachel Harris on twitter a few months ago when I decided to really do this whole thing. Go follow her now. I’ll wait.

This is definitely a case of tweet inspired buying. I’d seen her talk about it and thought it sounded fun and interesting.

Add to that, she’s a truly LOVELY person and I couldn’t NOT throw my money at her.


So, on to the book!


15 and like 9/10’s year old Cat is off to Florence with her father and soon to be step-mom. Naturally she’s dealing with all the usual issues with having a new step-mother. Once she gets there, though, things take a turn for the Renaissance, where Cat learns a few life-lessons.

The good:

Oh so much good. I don’t even know where to start.

I love the premise. Time-travel is always fun. In this case, it’s a real eye-opener for the MC. Cat is cute as a button, and I can relate to a lot of her issues. STILL. After like 20 years.

Rachel nails her MC and makes her relatable, real, and capable of growth. That’s important. She isn’t stale at all.

Cat learns her lessons in several ways without being clubbed over the head. Some of them are funny, some sweet, some poignant, and some just flat out msssccreepy.

The ending was satisfying. BUT OH SO NOT! Meaning, Rachel was a meanie butt and set up the next novel perfectly and left me wondering when it was coming out so I could read it already. This is a good thing.

But other than the cliff hangeryness (yes, I made that up just now) the ending was exactly what I wanted it to be after reading the rest of the story.

Also, and this is nitpicky but important to me, I didn’t find typos or mixed up names or anything to jerk me out of the story. Thank you good editing! Don’t get me wrong. I know that mistakes happen, it’s inevitable and I don’t expect any novel to be perfect. But my threshold for mistakes is pretty low, simply because it distracts me. So MWAH for the fine toothed comb that kept me right there in Cat’s pocket the whole way through.

The bad:

There isn’t any. I seriously loved this read. It made me feel good at the end.

Niccolo was creepy as hell, so I guess he can be the bad.


OMG read it if this genre is even remotely anything you’re into. It was well worth passing up on a chai latte for a day to read this!


Mostly because I feel the need for some humor today.

But also because it’s relevant to the post.

At my current day job, we do a secret santa thing every year. I picked our receptionist. We call her my work daughter, she’s just about 18 in a week or so. boobsShe’s funny and silly and at times, she’s dingy.

I got some pretty good news today that I’m super excited about.

So, it started out with that.

D: I’m so excited. I’m crossing my fingers, my toes, everything!

Me: Me too! *I then unzip my hoodie to show her my Tinkerbell shirt*

D: *wide eyes* OMG! You can cross your boobs?!?!

Me: No, dork. I was showing you my shirt. My boobies are not floppy enough to cross!

(Btw, this is not embellished. This was how the conversation actually went. I don’t need to make things up with this girl for comedy purposes!)

Me: Oh! Before you open the doors and get ready for the food share, I need you to check your email.

D: Why? What did I do?

Me: Nothing, silly. I just need you to check your email.

D: *scared look*

Me: It’s okay! I wouldn’t fire you through email.

D: Oh god.

We chose secret santas a couple of weeks ago, and I got her. Which made shopping super easy, since I know this young woman like she’s my own daughter. But I have issue with secrets. I’m terrible at keeping the kind that involve gifts. I can’t NOT tell someone if I got them something I’m really excited about and think they’ll be happy with. I also can’t stand not knowing what I got. I used to be one of those unwrap in secret and rewrap gifts people. Actually, I still would be if A wouldn’t hide shit so well.

Anyway. I asked D who she’d gotten and of course, trusting darling that she is, she told me.

Then she asked me who I got. Pft. Right. Not that it wasn’t hard to keep it a secret, but I totally did. So she wandered out of my office feeling cheated and even though people suggested to her that maybe it was because SHE was my secret santa, she didn’t believe it. Why? Because she knew that I would have told her.

So she checked her email.

And of course, there was nothing there yet.


D: Omg. You were my secret santa, weren’t you?!!

Me: Yep!

D: Omg, I had no idea!! And S even told me it was probably you!

I laughed so hard that my stomach hurt. Fortunately, she laughed too, so it’s all good!


Today is a sad day for all of us. Take a few minutes to think about the good in life and hug someone you love and who makes you smile. And pass along a smile to someone else.