Sunday, October 26, 2014

Unconscious Mutterings Meme

A word association meme

My family is important. All in the Family. Family reunions. Blood is thicker than water. The Waltons. Little House on the Prairie. Family ties and the Family Ties series. Genealogy and family trees. Sly and the Family Stone. The SNL Jim Carrey's Family Reunion sketch last night. Madea's Family Reunion.
A book I am going to review. I was a bit uneasy about reading it as reviews said there was incest and abuse (yes, there was both). Very sensitive topics were well handled in this book. The flashbacks and episodes were not too graphic. There was one sexual scene (not of a rape nature) and that was a bit surprising so far in the book. Anyway, I cried several times reading this and it made me think of how our families can influence us so much for several generations. 5 of 5 stars for me.

Fruit leather. Husband uses leather for his art...particularly making bracers and hats. Alligator skin. Tanned, wrinkly skin that is like leather. Indiana Jones. Anthony Hopkins using a whip in Zorro.
Pumpkin Pie Leather recipe

Chunky salsa. Chunk heels. People being described as being chunky. Chunky peanut butter.

Shakin' by Eddie Money. Trembling in your boots at Halloween. Shaken not stirred. Shake and Bake...tonight we are having baked chicken using a recipe for the mix that my parents used (vs. a box of Shake and Bake).

Oliver Twist. Ebola and other viruses. The vaccine controversy. Long-suffering parents.

Corduroy (the children's book character). A hole in your pocket can cause so much problem. Pita pockets...sounds yummy right now. Pockets of air when trapped in a car that is going under water.

Loose change. Loose morals. A woman described as being loose. My Mother letting us run and play after arriving somewhere...she referred to it at "turning you loose." Any Which Way but Loose. Loose debris. Footloose...I like the opening dance sequence of the second movie. Footloose and fancyfree.

Show tunes. Having nothing to show for something. Putting on a spectacular show. A theater.

Hideous Christmas vests. The movie theater workers wearing vest. A butler. Life jackets. Bulletproof vest. Vested interest. Being vested in a retirement plan. Playing something "close to the vest."

The end....that's all folks. Curtain calls...and the lines from Bohemian Rhapsody that talk of curtain calls and endings. Grand finale. The grand finale of fireworks.


Sunday, October 19, 2014

Read-a-Thon Progress

My Shelf Confessions

The goal is to read as much as you can during this time.

I started and finished this one in the last 24 hours of the read-a-thon. An addicting read having to do with things that become patterns, addictions and co-dependencies in families...incest, alcoholism, overeating, rape and domestic violence. I was hesitant to read this but the imagery was handled well. It was a very realistic telling but there was only one racy scene (and that was of a non-violent nature and surprised me to have it show up so far into the story). I cried greatly at several points during this reading. The author has presented a very profound reminder of how our families can influence us, good or bad, for years and generations. 5 of 5 stars for me.

Preschooler liked this beautifully illustrated book about the migration of a gray whale. The book is by Sharon Katz Cooper and will be coming out in February 2015 (we read an uncorrected proof).

One of my Mother's books and I am recognizing a lot of the things my parents used to do. This month we are trying out a couple of different baked chicken mixes, making Curried Fried Lamb Chops, baking mixed grain muffins and bread and making our own pancake syrup. Plus a few other adventures from this book and more for next month.
---I am currently on page 218 and trying to figure out if making school paste will make a horrible mess of a pan. I need to figure out if we have to get a pan especially for this.

I get the Fearless Flyer delivered to me. It is what is on sale at Trader Joe's and has several comics in it. I do not find the comics very amusing but I get a lot of ideas of things I can replicate at home. We get to a Trader Joe's about once every year or year-and-a-half. I cheer every time they open a new store because it makes the odds higher that there may one day be a location near me. Unusual thing in this month's flyer...Pumpkin Seed Brittle. I am glad I am reading through this off-and-on today because it reminded me to add a pumpkin for the kids to the grocery list (we do two or three during the season including our annual "Pumpkin of Sorrows" toss). I have skimmed this and mentally formulated plans of what I would like to try making  a copycat recipe for and what I would like to get on our next to get out a pen and start circling things and making lists.

Toddler's book. Each set of pages features a texture to feel (yarn, a bunny's fur, etc.).I read it to her and our Preschooler actually enjoyed it, too. They both liked scratching Dumbo's ears.
We read this on both Day 1 and Day 2 of the read-a-thon. :-)

Our new ice cream maker that we found at the thrift shop. I don't think it was ever used. Gel canister that you get cold and then it electrically mixes your ingredients. We are trying a couple of strawberry ice cream recipes this month.

Zelazny is one of my favorite authors. "Bring Me the Head of Prince Charming" is hilarious. The book above has seen better days (sigh)...but all the stories are still intact. I re-read a short story that is incredibly touching called "Come the Power." I am now reading the second story in the book "For a Breath I Tarry" which is about a computer who becomes enchanted with (extinct) mankind.
I have read 253 pages of this book so far this read-a-thon.
-----Correct that, I got to page 260 and then doubled back to page 250. There is a story, "24 Views of Mt. Fuji, by Hokusai" that has heavy mention of things from Japanese culture and I am taking the time to understand what I am reading about. If I had not started looking the references up, I would not know that the latest the story could be set is the end of the takes place in Owari and both the province and the (fuedal) domain no longer exist. This story is very beautiful so far and it hints that much of it will be very sad.

196 pages. There was a lot I already knew and a lot that was irrelevant to me. Still, I had been noticing the advice about profiles and this was just the push I needed to start making mine more effective.I had quit actively writing for a while in the Fall of 2012 and actually hadn't updated my Blogger profile since then!

Also read:
-----I am on page 8 of Michael Crichton's "Timeline."
-----"Follow Me, Mittens." A Scholastic My First Shared Reading book. We read this twice. It is about a kitten that is supposed to be staying close to his owner.
-----"Barbie: On Your Toes."  A learning-to-read book about Barbie and the costumes she wears as a ballerina. There was jumping in this book and we followed the reading by bouncing, jumping and "Spinjitsu Spinning" to the song that is both of the children's favorite..."Bounce (Radio Edit)" by Calvin Harris feat Kelis.
-----A Winnie-the-Pooh interactive book about ducklings. There is an interactive game at the end that we played.
-----A Mickey Mouse Halloween book with flip-ups. Toddler is actually not tearing this book when looking at it on her own (very different from Preschooler at that age).

Dewey's 24-Read-a-Thon
End of Event Meme

1. Which hour was most daunting for you?
About Hour 13 or 14....because I knew I had to sleep. I don't know whether I was asleep or reading for the first few hours of the event...I started the day with a book and I am thankful for days when I can do that.

2. Could you list a few high-interest books that you think could keep a Reader engaged for next year?
-----Something fun/beautiful/sad like Roger Zelazny's "Last Defender of Camelot"...a posthumous collection of his short stories that mainly deal with what it means to be human often from the standpoint of a being who wants to be human or has lost part of their humanity.
-----Douglas Adam's "Hitchhiker's Trilogy"
-----"Bring Me the Head of Prince Charming." A hilarious battle between good and evil. This is the first and best in a series. On a lesser note, I would recommend "If At Faust You Don't Succeed."

3. Do you have any suggestions for how to improve the Read-a-thon next year?
-----Take musical suggestions and have someone compile a playlist that people can use for background music.

4. What do you think worked really well in this year’s Read-a-thon?
The cheerleading was very well organized. The only complaining of lack of support I saw was someone who was not getting support in their home.

5. How many books did you read?
3 children's books, several hundred pages of a Roger Zelazny collection entitled "The Last Defender of Camelot" (beautifully written sci-fi), a page of a recipe book for a curry recipe

6. What were the names of the books you read?
-----Look, Baby (Disney boardbook). Children get to feel different textures. My children enjoyed scratching Dumbo's ears for him.
-----"Barbie: On Your Toes." This was followed by a session of bouncing, jumping and "Spinjistu Spinning" to their favorite song Calvin Harris' "Bounce."
-----Roger Zelazny short stories
"For a Breath I Tarry"- 47 pages
"Engine at Heartspring's Center"- 11 pages
"Halfjack"- 7 pages
"Home is the Hangman"- 82 pages
"Permafrost"-30 pages
"Loki 7281"-9 pages
"Mana from Heaven" -46 pages
-----7 pages of "The Up-With-Wholesome, Down-with-Store-Bought Book of Recipes and Household Formulas." I read 157 pages of this book yesterday and I am using several things in my menus this month. This book belonged to my Mother and I am recognizing a lot of stuff from my childhood.

7. Which book did you enjoy most?
I enjoyed all of them. I had both Me Time and wonderful Family Time.

8. Which did you enjoy least?
There was not a reading that I did not enjoy.

9. If you were a Cheerleader, do you have any advice for next year’s Cheerleaders?
Make a gameplan. Make a plan of how to pamper and cheer yourself.

10. How likely are you to participate in the Read-a-thon again? What role would you be likely to take next time?
I will be participating again. I will do a lot more warming-up and planning next time. I will make a fun exercise plan for next time....probably involving use of some of the books.

Saturday, October 18, 2014

Dewey's 24-Hour-Read-a-Thon
Mid-Event Survey

1. What are you reading right now?
I have just finished Roger Zelazny's short stories "Permafrost" and "Loki 7281." Most of the stories in this book, "The Last Defender of Camelot," have been about sentient robots, what it means to be human and the beauty/ugliness of human interactions.

2. How many books have you read so far?
A Disney boardbook for children to feel textures and 176 pages of Zelazny.

3. What book are you most looking forward to for the second half of the Read-a-thon?
I need to finish Oliver Twist. It is the first story in the Dicken's book I am reading...a total of 850 pages when I am done.

4. Have you had many interruptions? How did you deal with those?
Yes, children and the dog. Just our everyday life. :-)

5. What surprises you most about the Read-a-thon, so far?
Both children took a nap at the same time. I am not getting to flit around the internet as much as I envisioned due to some sort of computer problem that I need to figure out and slow internet service...sigh. I have yet to drink coffee (but intend to soon).

Update: I went to sleep at some point because the kids and I are tired due to allergies...staying up all night was not a good idea for my health.
-----Anyway, I picked back up sometime around hour 22 with 7 pages of a recipe book. I worked out the turkey curry I am making this month.
-----Followed by "Winnie the Pooh:A Good Day for Ducklings with the kids. This is an interactive book with plenty of text. Children press buttons for sounds throughout and then play a number matching game at the end.I did not like that there were suddenly mentions of the Easter Bunny (we do not do this at our house and it is a bit of a touchy spot with relatives who keep giving us subtly Easter Bunny and Santa-themed things because they want us to).
-----Then, in Hour 24, we read "Barbie: On Your Toes" and listened to the children's favorite song because the book mentioned jumping. Preschooler and Toddler's favorite song is "Bounce (Radio Edit)" by Calvin Harris feat Kelis and they jump,bounce or do "Spinjitsu Spins" every time "bounce" comes up in the song.

Dewey's 24-Hour-Read-a-Thon
Hour 9

Pages read today: 147

What I have read:
---A Disney Baby book where the kids can feel the textures. Toddler and Preschooler especially enjoy scratching Dumbo's ear for him. This is the second day in a row we have read this book.
---A re-read of a Roger Zelazny short story called "For a Breath I Tarry." I really like the ending. In this piece, Zelazny reminds me of the way I fact I enjoyed it so much I did a monologue of "The Story of the Ancient Ore-Crusher" while I was at university.
---A Zelazny short story "The Engine at Heartspring's Center." Again, Zelazny reminded me of my writing style...intricate plot twists that involve a way of playing with the words for more impact. I felt bad for the main character.
---A Zelazny piece called "Halfjack." Very short and the ending reminded me a bit of some of the characters that Piers Anthony writes.
---Zelazny's "Home is the Hangman." A sort of Frankenstein tale.

Starting Zelazny's "Permafrost." It begins:
High upon the western slope of Mount Kilimanjaro is the dried and frozen carcass of a leopard.
An author is always necessary to explain what it was doing there because stiff leopards don't talk much.

Dewey's Read-a-Thon
Hour 5

Pages read so far today: 96

What I'm Reading: A posthumous collection of short stories by Roger Zelazny entitled "The Last Defender of Camelot." He is one of my favorite authors and co-wrote the very hilarious "Bring Me the Head of Prince Charming." Most of the stories I am reading are beautiful yet sad. The theme that has run throughout so far is humanity...the value of life or what it means to be human.

Feeling: Glad that my reading is taking me away from some thoughts. It is a gloomy day and I am missing things that I had looked forward to.

On the stove: Rice getting ready to brown for Spanish Rice.

How are you doing?

Dewey's 24-Hour-Read-a-Thon
Opening Meme

1) What fine part of the world are you reading from today?
The United States. It is a gloomy day and we are missing a pumpkin patch due to weather and Husband being exhausted from several days of helping friends move. I am reading Roger Zelazny's short stories right now but they are all beautiful yet sad...I need some cheer.

2) Which book in your stack are you most looking forward to?
Getting through 4 Dicken's stories.....850 pages. Well, at least I will finish Oliver Twist. I inherited the bulk of my Mother's books after she my stacks are a little different than most people's....they are literally shelved stacks like they do in old university libraries. There are probably about 8,500 books in our house (5,000 from my mother).

3) Which snack are you most looking forward to?
Muffins. I am the queen of making muffins lately. I am especially experimenting with the different muffins that can be made with rye flour.

4) Tell us a little something about yourself!
I am a homemaker, editor and writer. I am in charge of most of our preschooler's homeschooling. I am married to a musician and artist. My favorite books are The New Living Translation Study Bible and Douglas Adam' Hitchhiker Trilogy.

5) If you participated in the last read-a-thon, what’s one thing you’ll do different today? If this is your first read-a-thon, what are you most looking forward to?
This is my first Dewey's Read-a-thon and I am always happy to have something where my brain is interactive with literature for long/consistent periods.

Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Cooking with Rumble!

This is a sponsored post written by me on behalf of Rumble for IZEA. All opinions are 100% mine.

My Newest "Cook-Through" Project!

I just finished working my way through reading what I thought was going to be a “cook-through” here on my blog....a "One-Pot Meal" cookbook that just wasn't my thing for now (especially the monkfish recipes) . I have a couple of huge volumes on my desk that are my current cook-through (along with some of my Mother's other cookbooks...particularly Church cookbooks).

Might as well spice it up with a few viral videos here and there....yes, I think that a website cook-through would be fun and I am enjoying the basic skills demonstrated in cooking videos on I have set up a section in my sidebar to keep track of future Rumble-inspired projects (currently, second section of sidebar) and a few of those that are more immediate interests are below. Enjoy and stay tuned for photos of my efforts. :-)

Source: How to peel and cut a pineapple in one minute by recetteminute on Rumble

Cutting a pineapple has always intimidated my Husband and myself. We have even gotten so far as to buy the pineapple (or have it given to us) and have it go bad. Then there is the matter of having a sharp enough knife (which we don't)....but it is going to happen this month anyway.

The video, unlike many other videos and instructions I have seen, made it so quick and EASY.

-----Husband is a big fan of fresh pineapple. He is used to but sometimes leery of my adventures. I will spring our latest voyage into pineapple chopping on him once we get to the produce aisle.

-----I am planning a Pineapple Upside-Down honor of my father who would have been almost a hundred this year. Next month, I am going to try doing Pineapple Upside-Down Muffins!

-----There are instructions for how to grow a pineapple from its cut off top on several sites online. The procedure involves donning gloves, twisting the pineapple's top off and making sure the whole thing is really clean. Growing a new pineapple can take up to two years!!! I don't know about this in our wacky climate, even with grow lights, but I will aim for at least having a very interesting houseplant. Who knows?...maybe it WILL happen. I once knew of people who successfully grew a palm tree in a Midwest cornfield!)

Source: How to make curry cocktail weenies by TomsTestKitchen on Rumble

-----The video makes me want to try real currywurst! It may not be Berlin, but finding a street cart or truck that offers currywurst will be one of my goals during our next visit to Chicago.

–---In Berlin, there is actually a museum dedicated to currywurst...The Deutsches Currywurst Museum. It is a highly interactive museum complete with spice-sniffing stations and currywurst-themed songs.

-----Let me see how mild I can make this for the husband and kids. There is usually a way without sacrificing flavor.

–---I collect curry recipes for the day that our friend gets out of physical therapy (he has been in a facility for about a year now and has just started being able to walk). If you would like to send me any curry recipes, my e-mail address is in my profile on the sidebar....thanks! :-)

-----I am always happy to find another use for my Hungarian paprika.

Source: How to peel a tomato in one minute by recetteminute on Rumble

A kitchen difficulty solved!

-----This will be especially helpful for peeling large batches of tomatoes. That means I can avoid a lot of salt and preservatives (which I rinse off when I can).

On Rumble:

---Signing up is easy. You can create an account or just sign in using Facebook.

---Opening multiple windows of individual videos resulted in a bunch of autoplays. I don't yet know if there is a setting in Rumble to overcome this.

---On Facebook, I found a Rumble app for selling and viewing videos but have not tried it yet (one thing at a time). There are 1,300 users signed up.

---I am following @rumblevideo and @chrispavloski (company CEO) on Twitter. I am cheering for the company to do well!

---There are often more videos than what comes up going through the channels on the sidebar. Look on a profile or search a topic.

---One of the things I want to explore next is the vlogs section. I might even try writing one. Hmmm. Rumble has unlimited video storage and there are several ways to monetize.

---It would be great if there were a way for viewers/bloggers to earn money on this platform. I hope there are future plans. :-)

---The music section is entertaining. I plan to spend a lunchtime or two browsing through. :-) My first viewing will be the video about how Ron Howard is going to direct a Beatles documentary.

---Other topics on Rumble (in order of my interest): News, howto, science, viral videos, travel, technology, gaming, auto and sports.

---It is nice to see videos with everyday people that haven't been bogged down with all sorts of advertising. That's right....there are no ads.

I am excited about Cooking with Rumble!

Labels: recipes, cooking, viral, tomatoes, pineapples, ilovecurry

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Saturday, October 11, 2014

Saturday 9 Meme
Theme: Single Ladies (Put a Ring On It)

1) Are the majority of your friends married or single?
A mix of both...but a lot of the single people are divorced. I also have one friend who thinks they are both married and single...repeatedly. (disturbing).

2) Rings are one of the items most frequently pawned. Have you ever visited a pawn shop, either to sell or to buy?
Yes, once purchased as a memorial to a loved one, once sold to help a loved one and once sold for some reason I don't remember.

3) Let's say we want to put a ring on it: What's your ring size? 
I would have to get out a ring sizer. If I could afford such, I would buy this as it reminds me of my Mother (and it would be wonderful if I could have bought it for her).
Pre-owned 22.84ctw Rutilated Kunzite Cocktail Ring

4) Beyonce does commercials for Pepsi. What's the last beverage you drank?
Dragon's Breath....warmed mead with mulling spices and rum is our Fall tradition that we did last night. I did not have rum in mine. It's something you sip to stay warm. Medieval.

5) Beyonce also has a clothing line. What are you wearing right now?
Black and red striped pants and a t-shirt with a dragon.

6) Speaking of clothes, Sam was changing hers this morning when she unintentionally flashed her neighbor. She didn't realize he was working along the fence that runs under her bedroom window. Tell us one of your most embarrassing moments.
That kind of thing tends not to linger in my mind. I do have some that would qualify as mortifying in that people did very cruel and taunting things.
Recently, I did discover that the hand lotion I hated on my desk was actually leave-in conditioner.

7)  Rumor has it Beyonce is pregnant again. Coincidentally, Sam needs to check the Babys R Us registry for a shower present. Who will receive the next gift you give?
Taking my oldest son out for some Chicago Style pizza. :-)

8) But Sam doesn't actually want to go to the shower and is trying to come up a good excuse. Tell us a time you fibbed you told to get out of doing something.
About twenty years ago, I said I was sick to avoid a celebration where I knew no one and would likely be spending the day all by myself while surrounded by people. I don't usually tell this type of fib.

9) When did you last go inside the bank and talk to a teller?
Due to some unauthorized charges, I have not had a bank account for several years. Never sign up for Columbia House.


P.S. I wish there were a little more to Beyonce's dress at the top.

Wednesday, October 01, 2014

FrightFall Read-a-thon.....goals and progress.

FrightFall Read-a-Thon

For this read-a-thon, you have to read at least one book that is scary. I am reading a Neil Gaiman book, "Anansi Boys," that is said to be both terrifying and lightly humorous. It is the story of a boy (and later man) whose father is a very impish and and hard to deal with god (lowercase g vs. God). The covers hint that the book paints spiders in a positive light. A cross of Stephen King and Douglas that's a good read.

"Such a charming man," she said wistfully. "What does he do?
"I told you. He says it's the miracle of the loaves and the fishes."
She stared at him blankly, and he felt stupid. When his father said it, people would laugh. "Um. Like in the Bible. The miracle of the loaves and the fishes. Dad used to say that he loafs and fishes, and it's a miracle that he still makes money. It was a sort of joke." 

I am having fun considering whether to make some of the dishes mentioned:
-----Jamaican Stew Peas and Rice
-----Sweet Potato Pudding
-----Jerk Pork
-----Curry Goat
-----Curry Chicken
-----Fried Plantains (I like these.)
-----Pickled Cow Foot (Okay, I am NOT considering this one.)
-----Falafel-Sashimi Ball (appetizer). I am not at all into anything with raw meat or fish...sashimi. I am happily looking at Falafel Ball recipes.
-----Fried Flying Fish.These were mentioned more than once.
-----Chicken Korma
-----Rum Cake. I definitely need more variations of this.
-----Drambuie on Ice
-----Jaffa Cakes
-----Pineapple-Upside-Down Cake. My father loved this. :-)
-----Island Rice Pudding
-----Spicy Cabbage
-----Battered Saveloy. Pretty sure this is a fish fish and chips.
-----Homemade Ginger Beer
-----Oxtail and Rice...well that would be brave of me....but maybe.

Status Update: I finished this book on October 3rd. :-)

Okay, yes I am including Oliver Twist as actually being scary. I am 30-some pages into the 850 of this book that belonged to my Mother. If you really put yourself in the place of the main character, the book definitely has a horrifying element to it. What could possibly happen to poor Oliver next?!
-The goal for this read-a-thon is for me to read 65 pages more.


The last goal, thus far, for this read-a-thon is for me to finish reading a All-in-one-Pot cookbook that my brother and his wife gave me for Christmas several years ago. I am on page 95 and I am passing all useful recipes on to a couple who are friends of mine....the wife just started teaching again and the husband is home doing the dinner cooking.

UPDATE: I have finished the cookbook! The only thing I found in it that I want to make is a Garlic and Chicken recipe. I did not find anything for my friends' cooking level or interest. Beautiful book though and I bet that if I read it again I will find some techniques to try (cookbooks are like that). One more reading goal to go for this challenge!!!

What are you reading?

:-) 2009-06-11 daily 0.5 2009-06-11 daily 0.5