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because I have laundry to do! Herself and I got soaked yesterday on our walk - but it was worth it. 10K steps by 3:30!!

Those of you who've been here a bit know how I feel about books. Love 'em - the smell, the feel, the sound of the pages.....e-readers just aren't the same. I'll read on the iPad, but grudgingly - it's just not....the tactile experience I want.

Anyway, Saturday we ended up at the Half Price Books flagship store (long story. Suffice to say that SG was a bonehead - again - and we had to run into Dallas.). Now, I've been on the lookout for Patrick O'Brian's Aubrey and Maturin books for a bit ("Master and Commander" was adapted from the 10th book of the series). So, while there, I went hunting.

I found 19 of the 20 the "full" price area (meaning half or less of the list price....but $5.99/$6.99 each for *20* books is more than my budget can bear, y'know?), I sighed then moved to the Fiction Clearance area.

Where I found 4 of the books at either $1.00 (2) or $3.99 (2). Hmmmmm.....about that time an employee walked by, so I politely asked "Excuse me - can you tell me why these 4 books are in clearance while you have a TON of the same ones - as well as the rest of the series - in the regular fiction section?" She looked at the books and said "Hmmm...that's a good question. How many are in the series? What are they marked in the Fiction section? Are they the same edition/condition? Let me see......"

I told her there were 20 books, and I wanted all of them - I had them on the iPad, but hated reading ebooks if I had a choice - but at $6 +/each, I couldn't afford to buy them all. She looked at the books in my hand, had me take her to the Fiction section...then ran off a few minutes. She came back with a pricing gun (!!) and told me to grab a copy of each book. (!!!!!!) As she was putting new stickers on them, she told me that she wasn't sure why some were in Clearance as "Super Buys" - that was only for either entire serieses or multiple copies of a single book - neither of which applied to the books I found there.

30 minutes - and a nice conversation! - later, she handed me the 20 books and told me to enjoy my reading. That lovely, lovely woman had marked every one of them for $1. (And I had told her that I didn't mind paying $3.99 - or even the $6.99! - but that I couldn't get all 20 at once at those prices.)

I started the first book, "Master and Commander" in the car. Finished it last night. I'll start the 2nd, "Post Captain", today. The books are good - for those not familiar, they're about His Majesty's Navy during the Napoleonic era - and written at...I'd say 6th grade level, or so (IOW, easy to read.) O'Brian isn't overly detailed in the......interactions between the sexes, but he IS detailed on the Navy and all things related. It is filling my History-loving heart with glee; Lucky Jack is - so far! - a likable character. Not perfect, no - but human and "real". Dr. Maturin is also likable - he's a stand-in for the reader, asking the questions we'd ask if we were there.

I'm still humbled by this - and very, very grateful. God is indeed Good!

Gotta go knit the thumbs on the fingerless knits so I can put that project to bed, then gotta start school. And go buy feed. And *walk*! Laters!

Book Review

Dec. 9th, 2014 11:08 am
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Friday I picked up a copy of "Wicked" - it's the book that the hit musical is based on. I read it over the weekend....for *Fan Fiction*, it's OK. Not stellar, but OK.

It purportedly tells the back-story of the events in the Wizard of Oz. Now, I don't have any problems with fanfic - if it's well-written - but I do have problems when people assume that fanfic is this case, it isn't, because L. Frank Baum did NOT authorize the book. And I think he'd take issue with some of the subject matter....

Because the author seems to be into kink. A *lot*. :shudder: I'm not sure I want to see the musical, now - because if they put *any* of it in, it'll ruin it for me. :sigh: "Wicked" - aka The Wicked Witch of the West/aka Elphaba - is green because a traveling tinker (who seems to be the Wizard himself, if I understood the ending correctly) thought he needed to drug her mother so she'd have sex with him. Only, her mother was a little tart - sleeping with any and everyone who came by. Her "father" - the man who raised her - is a missionary...only not a very good one. Her sister - the "Wicked Witch of the East" - is her half sister - her father was from a different area of OZ (not sure if he was a different species, or just different race)....who was also sleeping with their mother's husband. (Got that? Yeah.) She was born without arms because her mother's Nanny was given pills from a Gypsy to prevent this child from being green.......

The ruby slippers were given to NessaRose by the missionary dad, and Elphaba *wanted* them. Glinda - who was Elphaba's roommate in college - enchanted them so that Nessa could stand on her own 2 feet.....and things just keep getting weirder and weirder. (Elphaba commits adultery, and maybe has a kid - but she doesn't know, because she spent a year drugged out of her mind and can't remember if she gave birth, or not. And then she tries to tell his wife about the affair, but the wife doesn't want to hear it.)

It....well. It started out OK, but the kink came out and it just kept getting weirder.....there's 2 more books about OZ by the same author, but I don't think I want to spend the money on them. (He's also got 1 about - I think - Cinderella's stepsister, and another about...I dunno. I really lost interest in reading them after about the 2nd chapter of this one, to be honest.)

Anyway......the basic premise was interesting, but the extra....stuff, not so much. Since Baum wrote 20-ish OZ books, I don't think this was necessary.....and I think I'll stick with canon for a while.
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So, tadpoleacorn asked about knitting socks. :heh: You just opened a Pandora's box - I love knitting, I love new knitters, and I LOVE enabling. :trifecta!:

First up: I own......a lot of books. A whole LOT. The folks at Half-Price books mostly recognize me on sight now....and Paypal loves me. I am going to recommend a lot of books - please try to find them used (unless you are independently wealthy, in which case - are we related? :lol:) or see if your library has them (if your library is decent, they'll have some. Ours isn't.) If you need to purchase, is a good place to start, as is eBay. (I try to save money. With a book habit as bad as mine is...well, I have a few resources. :lol:) If you have a scribd membership, they have quite a few knitting books there.

OK, here we go. I'll put them in categories for you:

Basic Knitting:

Knitting Without Tears by E. Zimmerman - BUY it. BUY it now. It'll free you from being a blind follower, unable to knit without a pattern. In fact, buy all her books as you come across them

The Principles of Knitting by J. Hyatt - BIG book. Overwhelming. Treat it like an Encyclopedia, and look up stuff you want to learn. Very thorough. HP has it for $9.99. :wink:

Knitting in Plain English - M. Righetti - good book, not my favorite, but gives more detailed instructions than E. Zimmerman.

Knitting Rules! by S. McPhee (the YarnHarlot) - similar to E. Zimmerman, but written to a younger, more tech-savvy audience. (I recommend all her books, as well - most are essays about living as a Knitter, and are oh, so true!)

Kids Knit! by S. Bradberry - Good, basic beginner's book. Projects might be boring for an adult, but if the other books are too intimidating (so. many. words!) this one might click for you.

The Knitter's Book of Wool/Knitter's Book of Yarn by C. Parkes - good overview of the hows and whys of wool/yarn choices in your fiber projects. Some patterns, but they're really all about the fiber.


Sensational Knitted Socks/More Sensational Knitted Socks by C. Schurch. Lots of patterns, good explanations

Socks a la Carte/et al by Raffino & Cade - Novel approach; they use flip-pages so you can mix-and-match different cuffs/legs/feet.

Sock Innovation by Cookie A. - Good, but not necessarily for beginners. Buy it, then read it after you've got a couple of pairs of socks under your belt. She's, and it shows.

Sock-Knitting Master Class by A. Budd - VERY good book, starts with "easy" socks and gently leads you to glorious color-knit ones. Comes with a DVD (that I've never looked at. :lol:).

The Knitter's Book of Socks by C. Parkes - this was an interesting read; she goes into what types of yarn are best - and why! - and then starts on the patterns. I just got this one, and actually learned something new! (I'm jaded - most sock books are just new patterns, not new info to me. This was a nice surprise!)

Other knitting subjects:

Fabulous Fairisle by J. Allen - good for learning how to do stranded knitting

A Gathering of Lace by M. Swanson - lovely, lovely, LOVELY lace patterns, from socks to shawls and everything in between. Nice eye-candy as well as a nice book!

Knitter's Stash by B. Albright - cool book that has patterns from yarn stores all over the US. You could use it for geography lessons AND knitting! :lol:

No Idle Hands by A. MacDonald - History of Knitting in America. FASCINATING for the history buff as well as the knitter. No patterns (that I recall), but very interesting reading!

Folk Shawls by C. Oberle - Shawl patterns representing the shawls from around the world. Lots of lovely stuff here!

ANYTHING put out by Interweave Press - they have lovely patterns; well-written and well-edited. "Interweave Knits" is a bimonthly magazine; "Piecework" is not just knitting but all fiber crafts (bi-monthly also); "Spin-Off" is aimed at Handspinners; "Handwoven" is aimed at weavers. I have a lot of their collections - each one was worth full-price, in my opinion.

For eye-candy and jaw-dropping designs (but for later, when you have more experience!) - anything by A. Starmore - she who shall not be named. She's re-issuing a lot of her books - finally! - but....well, she's got a reputation in the knitting community, and it's not good. Her works are AMAZING, though - worth picking up if you run across any of them.


Knitting help - videos on just about every technique imaginable.

Knitting at - lots of techniques and patterns, but all in written form.

Knitting Pattern Central - TONS of patterns, both free and paid

Ravelry - where a TON of knitters/crocheters/spinners/weavers hang out. The pattern collection is...well, it's mind-boggling (I currently have a queue that's almost to 600 :gulp: and I haven't even scratched the surface!) You could easily knit your entire family's wardrobe from the free patterns here! You need to be a member, but it's free, so.....make sure you have a huge block of free time before you dive in!

I don't have any favorite YouTube channels, but there's a LOT out there. And, there's always the opportunity to go to a Yarn Store if you get really stuck and no one around you can help (but generally speaking, it's nice to actually buy something there when you ask for help.) My problem is that the nearest Yarn Store is 1 hour I had to muddle thru and teach myself for the most part.

I haven't even scratched the surface, here - but these should get you started. I have.....well, I have 2 bookcases in the Studio. 1 for magazines (almost full) and 1 for books (OVERfull!), with most of the overflow in the bedroom/living room/homeschool room. I think that all knowledge is useful, and when I run across a book that a) I don't have and b) has at least 1 thing in it I might eventually want to knit (or has some info that I didn't know before!), I grab it and bring it home. Honestly, if the internet went down today, I'd still have plenty of stuff to knit without repeating the same things over and over again....and I'd have books with new techniques in them so I could do new things. My knitting shelves are sorted by what the books mostly are for (sweaters/socks/hats/gloves/etc) so it might take a while to settle on 1 pattern, but I'd get there eventually. :lol:

Hope this helps! I have a ton more books - if you run across one, chances are I've either got it or seen it (and didn't grab it because I have one very similar to it on my shelves). I'd be happy to discuss all things yarn!
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Let's see....first up, my bombshell rocks the pool! No slippage, no major wedgies (but I need to do something else next time), no problems at all while swimming. It does, however, require LOTS of time to dry - we finished swimming at 6 last night, and right now (approx. 10:30 AM) it's STILL wet. Ah, well....

Yesterday we were busy. We ran to the feed store for hay...and came home with 3 guineas. We need something for grasshopper control, and looks like these are the best bet. They're in the coop now, being terrorized by the hens.

Then we ran to the Fabric District....and I scored some new swimsuit lycra. I have...wait, lemme just show you:

lycra fabric

$47 for lycra for 2 suits, plus the thread to sew both of 'em up. I didn't really need the lining fabric...but it was only $5/yard, and "real" suits use nude I caved. 2 yards is enough to do 3 suits...and I still have 2 suits worth of the blue lining. :lol:

Bombshell V. 2.0 is currently being worked on. I have everything cut out and the 2 back pieces gathered and pinned. I'm trying to slow down on this one and do everything as precisely as possible....

Anyway...we then went to a bead store for Herself, and stopped at Half Price. This one I haven't been to in a while...and I need to make the effort. Their clearance section ROCKS. I got *7* books - all hardbacks! - for $19. Let's see:

Mason-Dixon Knitting Outside the Lines
S*B Nation (vol.2)
Knitting From the Top
Knitting Cuff-to-Cuff
for $1.00 EACH, and

Inspired to Sew
Sew Serendipity.

VERY nice haul, wouldn't you say?

Then....oh, then the day went weird. We stopped at JoAnn's so I could get a 1/4" foot for my machine (to help make my seams more current foot is a little wider than that. No biggie, but I figured, we were out...I had new fabric...might as well, right?) They didn't have one, but suggested the Quilting store in the same shopping center. Um.

I usually try to brush off weirdness, but this is TOO weird to not post a warning: Thomas Quilting in Mesquite - AVOID it.

We went in, and I asked one of the employees about the foot. She asked what machine I had (A 1950's White Triple-Matic)...and said, "Oh, we need to get you something newer!" I said "No - really. I LOVE my White, I kill new machines - I just need a foot." She pushed a little, I said NO...then she told the Owner (Mr. Thomas) about my machine. :sigh:

He got NASTY. He refused to let me have a foot until I sat down at a $2700 machine and sewed a bit. I refused - he got worse. SG said - LOUDLY - "A foot won't cost me what a new machine will - let's GO."

The lady stood up, grabbed me a foot, and ran - yes, RAN - to the checkout. SG heard Mr. Thomas say "I should fire her - I told her 3 times to sit her down at that machine.." and SG went ballistic. (So did I, when he told me later.)

$17 later, I had my foot (which....won't work for my suit, because it doesn't have a slot for the needle, only a circle. No zig-zags, in other words. SG is going to hollow it out for me.) (And guys, I haven't told you ALL of it...because what's the point? Suffice to say, we will NOT be going back there. I was going to ask about service...but not now. I wouldn't be surprised if he broke my machine so he could sell me a new one.)

I hate pushy sales people....I mean, I get trying to sell machines - really, I do. But when a customer tells you over and over again that No, really - not interested, you should drop it. :sigh:

Anyway. I have Cotswold cheese cooking, and I need to get back to my Bombshell. laters!
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Ours has been...weird. Not just weather-wise, although that's a biggie - but weird all the way around.

Wednesday, I got stung by a scorpion 2x. It was hiding on my bath towel.....:owowowowowowowowow: SG smashed it into oblivion - fortunately, it looks like I am not currently allergic. (We have small ones, not the big deadly ones. Still - :ow:) We've killed 7 in this week alone - NOT normal. "Experts" say it's because of all the rain we've had - they've coming up, looking for drier areas. Whatever....the pest guy sprayed for them last week (because we'd killed more then - it's already been a BAD year for them)..I guess that's why we're seeing so many? :shudder:

Monday, we had a.....let's just say Anna's arch-enemy. It was stuck in between the window screen/glass - after baby birds. SG killed it with the shovel, then pumped 5 .40 rounds into it, just to be sure. :bigger shudder: There is NO DOUBT that it is DEAD. Thankfully.

I asked the Lord what's up...haven't gotten an answer. I also told Him that if He wants us to move, He's got to a) give a definite sign and b) provide financing. (I said that No scorpions would be a nice sign that we should far today, *0* have been sighted. I'll take that!) (Seeing's how He provided this property, I don't want to move without a clear sign it's His will. So....)

I've blown thru 9 books this week alone. 5 of the Maisie Dobbs mystery series, 3 Jane Austen "sequels", and ...wait, 4 Nicholas Sparks/Cameron Wright/etc books. So - 12, I guess. And I'm halfway thru "My Life in Service" about Lady Astor's maid, and another Maisie Dobbs book. I can't weave - my wrist hurts too much for that - so there's really nothing else to do once school/chores are done. :sigh: At least my "to read" pile is getting smaller!

Shabbat Shalom! See ya on the flip side!
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The Lord is SO GOOD! :happy dance: :deep breath:

OK, so Herself HAD to go to the fabric store TODAY to get some fabric for a cloak. No biggie - we finished school, then headed into town (the closest fabric (not quilting) store is 32 miles away). There's a Half Price books right across the street - hang on, let me back up a bit.

Last week, we hit the big Half Price, and SG picked up a DVD on the Crusades (sucks. Really - it wasn't worth the $8 he paid for it. :sigh:). Anyway, Tuesday, he decided to watch it - only they had forgotten to put the DVD in the case for us. So, back he went on Wednesday (it's near his office, so no big deal).....they gave him the DVD AND a 15% off coupon for his trouble.

Anyway. We hit the smaller Half Price.......I checked out the DVD section, then headed over to Crafts to see if they had anything. Um....yeah. They did.

Weldon's Practical Needlework, vol. 6 - 12. For......$9.99 EACH. That link shows you the current sales price at Interweave - $15 EACH. Plus shipping. I had a 15% off coupon......I got each book - some STILL IN THE PLASTIC WRAPPING!!!!! - for $8.49 EACH. For the hardback (Normally $30/each). :shock: and :happy dance:

I spent about 2 minutes asking myself if a) I needed them (No.) and b) would I regret NOT buying them (YES.) I had gotten Interweave's notice yesterday of the sale, and spent a good 30 minutes trying to talk myself into spending the $15/each....glad I talked myself out of it!

These are fantastic if you're a re-enactor, especially of the Civil War variety - these are facsimilies of the stuff originally printed in the 1800's/early 1900's. Not just knitting, but crochet, tatting, quilting, embroidery - everything. It's a fascinating look at 19th century/early 20th century life, from a woman's point of view. :bounce:

Yes, the Lord was looking out for us today! Not only did I score there, but Herself found her fabric for $3.99/yard (not-quite-Trigger, but almost. It'll do for a simple, non-functional cloak, which is what she wants.)

I've gotta go find a spot for my new books to go.....and clear a spot to mark up Herself's fabric. And mine....I bought enough to make myself a new skirt and overskirt set. Irish Fest is coming up...and SG funded me a new corset. :bounce: (We don't "do" Valentine's day, but sometimes he surprises me. Like the corset. I hope it arrives in time - if not, there's always the Arlington games.)

Anyway - back to your regularly scheduled day. And Shabbat Shalom, again!!!
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It's cold and miserable here, but that's OK - we need the rain, and the cold has killed off the grasshoppers. Win/Win!

I am very thankful that I live close enough to a Half-Price Books that I can visit it, but not so close that I'd be there every day. See......right now the entire store is 20% off. It's a dangerous place.....:lol: We went yesterday, and some more useful books.

The main one? A book called "We the People: The Citizen and the Constitution" by the Center for Civic Education. I'm on Ch. 3, and it's FABULOUS. I wish it were required reading for all our politicians.....not that it would do any good. :sigh: Ah, well - at least my kids and I will be well informed!

I'm thankful for my husband, too - he didn't groan when he saw the stack (hey, it was a SMALL stack!) of books on the table. :lol:

We're taking it easy this week and next - only hitting Torah Class. Week after next, we start in again.....but right now, it's light. Makes for a nice change.

Shabbat Shalom!


Oct. 4th, 2012 08:31 am
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Woke up with a headache this AM, after a night of bizarre dreams. I don't remember the details, just that they were *bizarre*. :sigh:

Been reading a lot, lately. Still "fluff" novels - right now I'm on an Early-Church kick. I'm in book 2 of the "Acts of Faith" trilogy by Janette Oke (ICK!) and Davis's ok, but very, very fluffy. And not a whole lotta truth - there's some, but they lose points because they use Hebrew words incorrectly (in book 1, they called the prayer shawl a "tzaddick", That's a righteous person - a prayer shawl is a tallit/tallis. And before you jump on me for being picky, in book 2 they get it right. :bangs head: Well, sorta...)

Still. I like the series, because, while fluffy, it's not predictable. Yes, you know who the hero and heroine are, and you KNOW they'll end up together, but you don't know HOW. And at one point, you really wonder IF they'll get together, because the heroine discovers her Jewish part, and starts searching, and the hero discovers that being a God-fearer AND a Roman Legionnaire don't mix. And that they both have a decision to make. (And....that's where it falls apart, because Oke is from the "sinners prayer" camp. :gag:)

You can tell the authors made a stab at actually researching the period, which I appreciate. (The heroine is Pilate's - yes, THAT Pilate! - niece. Book 1 begins right AFTER the Crucifixion.) It's also pretty well-written, kinda hit-or-miss in the chrischun fiction market (IMO.)

A better series, IMHO, is "The Mark of Lion" trilogy by Francine Rivers. Still a bit heavy on the chrischun side, but good. Better writing, and better history....but both series are about the same thing - the early Church.

I don't know WHY I am all of a sudden on this kick.....but hey - it's light, it's quick, and it's got me digging in again. Which is good......but I'm staying up too late reading. :sigh: Which explains part of the headache. :grin:
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First up, no contractors today. Seems that Skeeter's truck is dead. SUPPOSEDLY, they'll be back tomorrow. Any bets??? I've painted the french doors (barn red. Don't ask - they look nice, but they are RED. :lol:) and washed my new-to-me rugs. The lady on CL said they were "almost" new and didn't match her decor...I think the cat pee didn't match her scents. :ick: They're nice enough, though, and I scrubbed the dickens out of them, so they'll be fine. They're currently on what's left of the deck, drying.

Now. I finished Hunger Games 2 and 3 yesterday. They....I don't like them. After spending all of Book 1 getting you to actually LIKE Katniss, Ms. Collins spends the next 2 books tearing her down. I mean......:sigh:

(I have to spoil some, here. Sorry!) In Book 1, you're told that Katniss could cause the Districts to rebel, so she has to toe the line. Why then, does she get sent BACK to the Games????? I mean...if *I* were the ruler, and was afraid that rebellious folk were going to rally around *you*, you'd better believe I'd be out there, showering you with gifts, making you my right-hand person - ANYTHING to keep peace. NOT put you in a position to probably be martyred! (And the way it was done would have - in the real world! -caused the rebellions to pick up, not fizzle out. You simply DON'T try to sacrifice the current "hero" of the people!)

I also don't like how Katniss is made out to be self-centered, focused just on herself. In Book 1, it's apparent that she's NOT like that at all - her whole focus was on trying to save her male "partner"; it's said over and over again that she couldn't go home if she was the one to kill him (and before that, her family - it's why she signed up for tesserae, after all - NOT for her sake, but her sister's.). So...why pit them against each other again? Especially with the whole "Romeo and Juliet" thing going? It......makes no sense.

And the whole "love triangle" thing? Doesn't make sense either. Katniss made plain in Book 1 that she had NO interest in love/boys/doing the family thing. So....why throw it in the sequels?

Ah, well - not every book can be a winner. I need to go scout out my next read......something light, I think. :grin:

I'm trying to get past that, to look at the under-levels...but it's hard.
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I read "The Hunger Games" yesterday. It...wasn't what I expected. It's DEEP. Multiple layers upon layers.....and very, very compelling.

I'll try not to spoil it for the 1 or 2 people left that haven't read it - but, given that there are 2 sequels, you pretty much know who's going to win. :lol:

On top, it's a story about a post-apocalyptic world (it's based in the US); the US (called "Panem") was broken into 13 districts, ruled by "the Capitol". There was a rebellion, and District 13 was destroyed (or was it? I have suspicions). Now, every year, the Capitol holds the Hunger Games (so-called because the winner gets food for his/her District for LIFE)(the Capitol keeps the people in near-starvation, to prevent uprisings. Starving people don't have the strength to rebel, see.) where each District has a drawing for 2 Tributes (1 male, 1 female, from 12 - 20 (I think)). It's mandatory to put your name in; you can enter more times to earn a small supply of food for your family.

This year, Katniss's sister (12) is chosen, and Katniss volunteers to take her place.

The Games are.....think Survivor meets Roman Colosseum games meets reality TV, only with kids killing kids, winner take all. It's brutal.....but the book doesn't go into that much detail (thankfully. My imagination is vivid enough!)

That's on top. Underneath....

You have a story about the ills of government controlling the populace. The games might be rigged - you don't know, but they are used to keep control of the Districts. The Game Managers control most of the Arena- to the point of controlling the weather, the conditions, etc. It's all about control - and how the Tributes are portrayed. Each Tribute has a tracking chip, so that they can be watched at all times. There are cameras EVERYWHERE, filming - the populace are REQUIRED to watch the games, which, of course, are edited heavily.

Under THAT, you have a story of self-sacrifice.

It's....deep. And it kept me up most of the night, worrying at different points of it. Yes, it's THAT good!

There's a lot to think about in it, and I'm still thinking. I started Book 2 last night, but haven't gotten very far.....

I will NOT go see the movie. What the director and author did, was film it LIKE a reality show - all the "deep" stuff in the book aren't there. I've been told that if you haven't read the book, you'll get the top layer, and maybe the 2nd layer, but you'll miss the deeper one(s). If you HAVE read the book, you'll get it all, with a dose of how TPTB control the populace via the media.

Like I said - it's deep. I'm sure the movie is, too - IF you've read the book - but I have no desire to SEE what I've read. Not with this book......

Do I recommend it? Yes. It's well-written, and had gripped me by the end of Ch. 1. There's no gratuitous violence/sex in it (it's actually almost sex-free; there's some crushes going on, but that's the extent of *that*), and it moves quickly - just like real life.

I need to clear out my in-box, then I am curling up on the couch to read #2. I wanna know What Happens Next!
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which means we have tests. Fun stuff.....we also have a literary analysis to do, on Twain's Joan of Arc. THAT'LL be fun, since Himself has farted around instead of reading it. :sigh:

I repainted the breakfast area yesterday. Same basic color; it was Saffron, now it's Butter Cookie. The big difference is that the Saffron had a green undertone; Butter Cookie has a lovely golden-brown glow to it. I like it much better! (I told SG that if he repainted the kitchen, we'd end up repainting most of the house. He denied it....and now? We're about to repaint the family room, he's decided the entry hall and kids' hall needs an update, and I want to repaint the dining room once we reclaim it. :lol: I'm still tending towards earth-tones, but the colors we're picking are softer and more....serene. Not a huge change, for the most part, but the house feels "happier", if that makes sense.)

We have 2 contractors coming out tomorrow, and 1 on Sunday. I want to get this party started.....

We had a nice walk in the park yesterday. The weather was GLORIOUS - 80*, but with a cold wind. Today? The high is 57*. :shakes head: Weird weather abounds.

Oh! I found a new-to-me series: Lady Julia Gray. Set in Victorian England; in book 1 her husband is murdered and she - yes, SHE - finds out who-done-it. There's a PI involved (not called that, but hey - it fits), and there's a lot of shenanigans. Book 2 is 18 months later; she's at the family seat (her Father is an Earl), and there's another murder and a confession. Again, SHE figures out the scheme.....I'm enjoying them! I have 1 more; I need to see how many books are in the series. She's a plucky sort - and the romantic interest (although there's been very little actual romance - a lot of sultry looks. :grin:) is very interesting, indeed.

Need to go milk - I'm drying up all but Zorra tonight. That'll ease my load.....until April. :lol: I need to trim feet - I've done Annie and Risky; 88 feet to go. :sigh:
fiberaddict: (silly: Llama llama duck)
Yesterday was spent moving the dirt pile from where the shop will be to..filling in all the holes the dogs have dug. Apparently, the dogs want me to have a basement. Or they're digging to France. Take your pick. :lol:

We did make a quick run to Half Price....I need to stay out of there. Seriously. I went in looking for books for our next History cycle....didn't find any of them. I did, however, score a complete set of "The Enjoyment of Music" - the book AND the 2 CD sets (for $15!). I was trying to only buy what I needed....but I did need something a bit more....engaging than "Pathways to Harmony". It's good...but it's strictly theory. This? Is a little bit of theory, and a lot of Music Appreciation.

I also got a book on Rashi (disappointment - I thought it was a's just a bunch of quotes from his commentaries.) and a book on how to have a Jewish home. No, not converting - just want to get a handle on how they think. Even if I am a Gentile. :smile:

We got a catalogue for "The Great Courses" - they sell college-level lectures in a variety of subjects. NORMAL prices are...well, WAY out of our budget, but right now they have a bunch on sale for more realistic prices (seriously...$300 for a course isn't bad - for a course - but *I* can't afford that. It's on sale right now for $29. THAT, I can do.). They're not all on sale - but there's 5 we want to get (Math, mostly. Mental Math and Calculus (might as well get a jump on it!), 1 on Writing for SG, 1 on the Dead Sea Scrolls for us, and the Story of Human Language. We can get all of those for UNDER $200.....which isn't bad at all (thank you, IRS! :lol:)

Need to punch up Math for Herself - she does well during the week, but then bombs TOTALLY on the Chapter Review (I don't call them "tests" - she freezes up. They are "reviews".) I mean...80's and 100's on the weekly work...and a..dare I say it? 35 on the Review. :sigh: She's going to daily Math to see if that helps...if not, I need to do some digging for extra support.

Looks like we'll have the shop delivered next week, instead of 2/11. That's good - I can start emptying the garage that much sooner. :heh:
fiberaddict: (Default)
We've gotten 2.5" since yesterday! We need it - badly! - but....I'm tired of the blah gray-ness. And the damp chill - I don't do well in the cold. :brrrr:

MRI went well this AM. I have the CD; we'll see what the doc says Thursday.

Kitchen: Still a shambles. SG is going to try to grout it tonight, so that I can maybe get the house back in order on Friday. I put 2 more coats on the countertop today (that makes 10, total.) No, it didn't really *need* them, but SG had dropped some tiles/tools on them while we were tiling, and...well, I just felt that they needed another coat. Or 2.

Finger: Hadn't updated in a while. It's....healing remarkably quickly! The ER said 4-6 months......most of the spot is already filled in with new skin. It's VERY tender, but that's OK - I'm running around in nothing more than a band-aid most days. (Thank you, Lord!)

Books: I LOVE having to go into "town"...especially when it's a town we don't normally go to (yesterday was Plano.) We get to hit new Half Price stores.....the one yesterday wasn't that great, but I got a book on Jewish crafts and games, a couple of Gaelic books for SG (he thinks he wants to learn to speak Gaelic. :snicker: He doesn't have time for Rosetta Stone (well...he does, but he'd rather watch Lost or Red Dwarf. :sigh:), so how he thinks he'll learn Gaelic.....ah, well. I still hunt for him, because that's just how I roll. I found a book on tatting, which I grabbed, and we scored a BEAUTIFUL photography book called "The Synagogue". Photos of Synagogues from around the world - for $12. It's a coffee-table book....and I'm itching to dig into it. (Been doing work-work today. :sigh:)

Art: I have scored a number of art workbooks on eBay. Numerous books by Cathy Johnson (watercolor and sketching) and a few Walter Foster drawing books. Can't wait to start using those!

Need to get back to work...:sigh:
fiberaddict: (Default)
:ugh: Been on the phone ALL morning long with - who else?- work. :mumble: I'm PART-TIME, dammit! Leave me alone!!!! :sigh: The good news is that we had finished everything but Herself's music lesson when the first call came......I was able to do her before the *next* one came in. (I only do her in 15 minute spurts - she simply can't handle a full 30 minute lesson. She'd go bonkers if I tried to do a REAL lesson - 1 hour - so, I've settled for 15 minutes. She'll still learn, albeit slower than "normal").

Needless to say, I have a raging headache. :sigh:

AH, well - I did get the laundry done. Tried something new - I've been hanging SG's work shirts out on hangers, to prevent shoulder "dimples". Today, I hauled out all the empties and hung the clothes on hangers as I pulled them off the line. Hey-presto, ALL the laundry is put up properly, instead of sitting in the basket until I get around to it. :happy:

Dusty is doing MUCH better. He's napping outside the hay barn right now - and he's STANDING. This is big - he's been laying down for his naps; adult horses generally don't lay down much. The fact that he's sleep-standing is great! And his appetite's almost back to normal, too. We've decided to just let him be for now - he's not hurting anything, and this way Finn can't bother him. Eventually, we'll put Finn in with the girls (he's been de-boyed, so he can't breed anybody!) and get Dusty back in his pasture - the goats are right there for company for him, and I can always "give" him a pet goat if he needs one.

I need to get back to work on the kitty quilt....I started it with a bang, but haven't touched it since Saturday. :shrug: I tend to work in fits-n-starts anyway, so it's no biggie.

Oh! Finally got my copy of "Black Ships Before Troy" today - it's a retelling of the Illiad by Rosemary Sutcliff. FANTASTIC book! We were trying to slog thru the "real" Illiad (one of the Classics from Gutenburg) and....well, it wasn't going so well. Long-winded, not much action....BoRiNg!

This? I read Chapter 1 during lunch, and both kids were into it. We'll be reading a chapter a day, to get thru it....don't know what we'll read next, but this is a good version if you want to read it. B&N has it for $6.17; members get free "expedited" shipping (it took....9 days. Granted, I ordered on a Sunday (1), and Monday was a holiday (2), but...a week for "expedited" shipping is a bit silly.)

I think I have the comments at DW open to everyone now.....I hope, anyway!
fiberaddict: (Disney: L&S Stitch bonking head)
Let's see...yesterday Himself and I walked 2 miles for PE. We hiked up to the local gas station for ice cream, then back again. Good walk - and I'm not all that sore this AM. We're gonna try to do a slightly shorter walk today...we'll see. Looks like rain.

Got the Jeep last night....$260 for a new battery and oil change. $113 was the battery....the majority of it was the diagnostic charge. :sigh: At least it's back, and it's running well.

Today we have the exterminator coming out, the new phone service installer coming out, and the dryer repair man coming out. BUSY.

Rosa actually ate her breakfast this AM and asked for more - so she's getting better. We got almost a full strip-cup of milk - also good.

We're doing a Unit on Literature Terms today, so Himself is prepared for book reports. That should be fun....

I read "Battle Hymn of the Tiger Mother" this week. It' I do NOT agree with her philosophy AT ALL. Yes, Western parents do tend to coddle their kids (I don't); yes, a lot of Western parents pay their kids for good grades (Nope. Not here.) However......

I do NOT demand straight A's....or perfect scores every time. I do demand that they do their best- which, right now, IS straight A's. If they don't get A's, I do NOT drill them on the subject for hours on end. (She does. :boggle:)

And....I believe in music classes. I do. EVERYBODY should know the rudiments of music theory, and should be able to play an instrument. BUT. She started her girls at 3 on the piano (I think that's a little too young, but whatever)...only she insisted on at least an hour practice PER DAY. AT 3. :NO:

And she forced her youngest daughter to play violin.....and insisted on 6 hour practice sessions. She (who is NOT musical, by her own admission) would go to the lessons (minimum 2/week) and take notes...then leave her daughter NOTES - some TYPED - about what to practice. (She included some of the notes. Insane! - We're talking about technique, we're talking about intonation...from a person who really has little clue. You might be able to parrot what the teacher says, but if you don't have a clue you're not HELPING.)

OK. *I* play violin. I had natural talent for it.....but I wasn't pushed. I had fun - and THAT'S what it should be about. I got pissed at the author's repeatedly saying that her kids were "prodigies". Not with that type of practice schedule. Practicing 6 hours per day, 7 days a week will give you technical brilliance...NOT prodigy. ANYONE would play fantastic with that kind of pressure.....(and she did the same with her oldest daughter and the piano. At one point, her daughter GNAWED on the piano from stress.)

She also describes a "violinist's hickey"...which I had NEVER heard of. Supposedly ALL violinists get it....I never did. And I was *GOOD* favorite tutor was a Julliard professor on sabbatical. She interviewed ME before agreeing to take our money for lessons......and she was brilliant. I learned SO much from her....yet, I never got calluses on my fingers, or a "hickey" on my neck....because I wasn't forced to practice for hours on end. :sigh: I practiced when I wanted...and yes, sometimes it was for 2 or 3 hours, but I was having FUN......:bangs head:

The book was interesting...but also sad. I feel for her kids.....they didn't have any sort of childhood. (I don't care about the "no sleep-overs" or "no playdates"....we do that, too. It was the forced practicing that I disagreed with the most - she even made them practice on VACATION, for pity's sake - even overseas.)

Gotta skitter...
fiberaddict: (Disney: L&S Caffeine)
and I don't know why. Ah, a lot of reading done. But NOT on "Painted Caves". I quit. It's.....

OK. I found "Cave" in 7th grade. LOVED it - the survival skills, the plucky heroine surviving against horrible odds, in a completely foreign was fantastic. When "Valley" came out, I snapped it up - HARDBACK, even! - and devoured it. I liked the dual point-of-view, the survival skills were still there...OK, it was a *little* hard to take the domestication of horses AND cats, but it *did* make sense within the story. (Although Baby was a bit of a deux-ex-machina, but hey - it worked, and I could believe the sequence of events.) Along came "Mammoth" was a wee bit of a let-down, but the story still worked, mostly. The relationship conflicts made sense, the reconciliation was believable - so I was happy with it. I wanted to Know What Happened Next, which is a good thing.

Along came "Plains". UGH. Sucked. It was basically them boinking their way across Prehistoric Europe. The few contacts that they had with other people felt strained...the whole book was a let-down. Even though it took *years* for it to be published, it felt like it was written to a deadline....and it was flat. VERY disappointing, but hey - I had so much time invested at that point I wasn't going to skip it. I hoped that "Shelters" would be back up to the first 3 books' standards......but, alas, it was not to be.

I'll be honest - I don't remember much about "Shelters", it was that bad. Yes, yes - Ayla's the first Einstein, she invented everything, and Jondalar is a super-stud. Whatever....I want to know WHAT HAPPENS NEXT, not what happened 3 books ago. (The repetition - oy! I really didn't need to have the local flora and fauna described in excruciating detail every 2 chapters - I got it the first time. Heck, I got it the first BOOK.) Still, again with the personal investment - I really wanted book 6 to wrap up all the unanswered questions. (Like...WHO are Ayla's people? Does she see her half-breed son again? Does she have a son with Jondalar?????)

So. I heard "Caves" was coming out...and I wasn't excited. At all. Still....I have ALL the rest of them (in hardback, even!), and I like to have complete sets. :sigh: So....I found the first 3 chapters online, and read them...and got worried. The writing....wasn't gripping. I didn't CARE about the story - and that's a bad sign. I've been on this ride for *30* years now (yup. Clan was published THIRTY years ago. Wow...)....and really, really wanted to know How it Ends. However...I skipped the hardback. I had a feeling......

I mentioned yesterday that I had made it to Part 2, and NOTHING had changed in 4 years. Umm.....*that* didn't make any sort of sense. Ayla is being trained to be a shaman (or something)....and in 4 years she hasn't progressed? After ALL she's been thru, she still needs to mark the moon cycles/sun cycles? I thought she had done that in Valley, when she kept track of how long she'd been there...but, OK...whatever. I can deal.....but to not progress AT ALL in 4 years?

And Oh My Gosh, if I had to read about 1 more muddy, painted cave I would have sporked my eyes out. I get it - the caves are sacred. Only we don't know why, and we don't know who did the painting, but they're special. And we have to sing (OH Lord, not that song again!!) to find the most sacred-est spots in the cave. Ayla can't sing....but she can mimic animal sounds, which makes her super-special. :bangs head: (And remember, I didn't finish Part 2!)

So...I hunted for spoilers. Had I had a paper copy of the book, it would have hit the wall. It seems that in Part 3, Auel has Jondalar cheat on Ayla - and SHE DOESN'T KNOW. Apparently, it's been going on for YEARS, and she has no clue. NO. It has been established that Ayla can read would something like that NOT be noticed??? Especially since we've already DONE this in Mammoth.......And then, Ayla gets so upset she tries to commit suicide??? Again - NO. Not with everything she's already survived - a "cheating" spouse (when, in their society, it's not cheating, not as we know it, anyway) wouldn't be THAT big of a deal. Only this is after she has a fling of her own with someone that the entire first part of the book has established is a loser and she doesn't like/trust him???? C'mon....that makes NO sense at all!

The entire book is a waste of ink and paper. IMO, of course - but NONE of the outstanding questions got answered, not even the ones that were hinted at in previous books (Ayla has SEEN her 2 sons meet.....but they didn't. In fact, she doesn't HAVE another son at the end of this book!!! :bangs head:). It was broadly hinted in at least 2 previous books that Ayla would help facilitate a relationship between Us and Them (Cro-Magnan and Neanderthal) - nope. It's been hoped that Ayla would find some relatives - it's been hinted that she IS of the same clan as Jondalar...but, again NOPE. No tying up of loose ends, no closure......:sigh:

And.....after 4 years of hauling around the overweight First one has invented the wheel???? That.....never mind. I've already given up on the series, and I'm tired. Pointing out all the inconsistancies (I mean, in 4 years NO ONE else has tried to domesticate a horse??????) would take all day - and I'm too tired to go there.

I'm very disappointed. After 30 years, this is what we get? *I* could have written a better finale, and I'm not an author! :sigh: Save your money...if you must read it, borrow it from the library. But you're not going to miss anything if you skip it.

Me? I'm never going to get those hours back.......

I think...

May. 3rd, 2011 11:04 am
fiberaddict: (Disney: L&S Stitch bonking head)
piano is not for me. I can read treble clef with no problem; bass gives me fits - but that's not the issue. I sat down today to do Lesson 1...and my left wrist simply can't take it. :sigh:

Lesson 1 is basic - stupid, actually, if you've had ANY music training at all. "This is a piano. This is how you find the notes. This is "C"..." :arrrgh: He then starts you off with a basic chord progression (so that you feel like you're making music. Whatever...) right hand? No problem - I have an octave reach with it, easily. My left hand? I can't stretch from c to g. :sigh:

I will keep trying...but I have the feeling that I'm going to have to just *watch* the lessons, then try to do them on my harp - you know, that's not a bad idea, actually - doing the chords and stuff ON the harp, as he goes. :thinks: We'll have to rearrange the music area and shift the harp into there instead of the living room (it's in the living room next to the TV, so that the sound vibrations will keep the harp's soundboard "alive". Same theory as putting a new violin in a cabinet with the radio playing loud music - the soundboard will vibrate and the instrument will find it's voice easier and sooner than if you just play it a lot. :grin:)

Himself has no problems with it, so he'll be continuing with it. I don't care WHAT instrument the kids end up playing - they will learn at least 1, and they will get somewhat proficient on it. (I can play violin, clarinet, recorder, tin whistle, and can dink around on the harp and piano. Violin is my instrument of choice, even if my wrist has buggered it for me. I can still play it - just not as good as I once was. Ah, well - not gonna perform any time soon, so it's OK. I just like making music!) When I rule the world, everyone will have to learn how to read music. :nods:

Still plugging away at "The Land of Painted Caves" or whatever. I'm sorry....but I think I may not finish it. :sigh: I'm at Part 2....*4* years after Part 1 and Ayla is STILL in the same position she was in Part 1. No progress has been made in her "training", she's still got 1 kid, no changes on the relationship front, and the girl who hates her hasn't tried anything. Ummm......right. In 4 years. Not buying it....and the whole book feels it was churned out just to get something in print. And - I don't CARE about the damn caves, I want to know *what happens*. Auel goes into detail on Every. Damn. Cave they visit - I Don't Care. If it doesn't move the story along, it's not needed.......and this? Doesn't move. I can't believe we waited how many years for this? NOT worth the wait. :grumble: I remember I felt the same way about Plains, and Shelters......this is very disappointing. I'm trying to figure out if I just want to skip to the end to see if it ENDS, or if it peters out again.......(And, they still haven't discovered the wheel? After 4 years of hauling the large priestess around on a travois? Ummm...that makes no sense!)

Got a loaf of bread in the machine - it'll be done in time for lunch. :mmmmmm: Fresh bread and peanut butter - can't wait!
fiberaddict: (Disney: L&S Caffeine)
Friday sucked, but y'all know that. We ended up getting Himself 2 new (young) gerbils from PetSmart. I...would have waited a bit, but he was all torn up about it and *needed* something in the cage, so.....:shrug: It helped - he's all excited, setting up the cage for them - he bought a hide-away for them (the old gerbils ate theirs), and rearranged things, so it's all good.

Rosa's udder is slowly improving. She's much better - she was outside yesterday head-butting with Annie and Sunny, so she's feeling a LOT beter. Her udder is getting there - we still have a long way to go, though.

Yesterday was good. Got my Mother's Day present...OK. I didn't *ask* for it, and was on the fence about it, but SG talked me into a Nook Color. I love my Kobo...but he's been trying to get me to wanting an iPad since he got his, and it ain't happening. This was his "compromise" - it's a tablet. (Well...if you hack it. I WILL NOT, because I don't *NEED* a tablet - I have my iPhone. I do not need anything else.) That is also an ereader.

I confess, I was lusting after color - I have some knitting patterns that I wanted to be able to carry around with me, but they're in color (charts) and won't work well on the Kobo. I could live without them, but...honestly? It's nice. I was worried about the screen being to bright - but they have a "gray" selection that makes it very similar to e-ink.

He's been trying to get me a Nook since they first came out - I resisted. When the Color came out, he started up again.....I still resisted. He finally wore me down......

We also hit Half-Price, where I scored the BEST thing. Seriously. I wandered over to the Homeschooling section, and started browsing. Found a nice grammar book (I have some old ones on my hard drive, but it's kinda hard for me to use them, since I have to read it on the Mac - that way both kids can see it at the same time. Plus, some of the rules have morphed since the late 1800's...Himself and I are working thru "Grammar-Land", but it's way too basic for him.), found some logic puzzles...and found a copy of "Navigating the Social World" - it's a curriculum designed for Aspies to help them with their social skills. :happy dance: Social stories, emotion charts - the whole works. For $25!!!!! It's written in an easy-for-a-layman-to-understand format, it looks do-able, and I am geeked! Herself needs this - she has no social skills at all. (Unless you count "droning on and on and on about whatever her latest obsession is, even when the audience has started moving away because they Don't Care". She's oblivious. :sigh:)

I also got Jean M. Auel's far, it's....well, not worth the $$. IMO. I'm on Chapter 4, and the writing seems very juvenile to me - not at all up to the first 2.5 books in the series (Seriously. "Clan" and "Valley" would good - a little too much sex, but hey, I can deal. "Mammoth" got tedious - just how many men were gonna want to marry Ayla, anyway, and how much more technology was she going to invent???; "Plains" was just boinking across Europe. "Shelters".....I have blocked that from my memory, so it had to have been pretty bad/boring. This? Along the same lines, so far, in boring-ness, and the prose seems aimed at 6th graders. :yawn: We'll see if I make it - I want to, because Ayla hasn't invented the internal-combustion engine yet, or domesticated cows. I want to see how she does it, because you KNOW she needs milk for her lattes.) I guess I'm spoiled from reading Eric Flint - he writes a nice, tight story and isn't afraid to use "big words". (I'm in 1634, now. There's 5 or 6 novels in that year...then we move on to 1635. I need to see how many more books I need to get....Himself is working thru 1632 now. He's enjoying it - in fact, he's giving mini-reviews to anyone that asks him what he's reading. THAT is reading success, in my book! :lol:)

SG has a violin lesson today. Oh - Himself asked if he could take piano, instead of violin. Breaks my heart, but I agreed. He doesn't have the fingers for violin. We have a CD set of piano lessons (it's the guy from PBS, I think. Half-Price to the rescue again! :lol:) so that's what he's doing. I'll be doing them, too - I always wanted to learn piano.
fiberaddict: (Calvin: Faces)
Called McCoy's yesterday...and they couldn't find any record of my purchase. :bangs head: Called back today....." was a mis-communication. We're going to go...go get them today, and we'll deliver 'em free of charge to you tomorrow, if that's all right...." :sigh: Yes, it is, but I really wanted them TODAY so I could get the barn all spiffy-fied. :sigh:

Himself is already comfortable with basic Algebra. He's got a good handle on we may not need to do the Intensive Practice pages. We'll see. Today we read about Moses and the Exodus (good timing, huh? Passover begins Monday evening....) and he started building the Wilderness Tabernacle.

I did 3 loads of laundry, got them hung on the line, and did some Work-work. Also spent some time downloading (legally, for free!) most of the 1632 sequels. (I think I now have all the 1634 ones, and the 1635 ones, plus the 3 Gazettes, the 2 Ring of Fires....I think's that it. Baen put out CDs...and they've been uploaded for people to download. Can't wait to start on them!

I have a problem with DRM.......I understand it, I really do, but.......why is it OK to borrow paper books from a library, or to buy paper books from a resale shop, but it's not OK to borrow e-copies? I mean......OK. I have a LOT of paper books. LOTS. Most of them I bought from Half Price - let's face it, I can't afford my reading habit if I have to pay full-price. I DO buy some books new - when I have the funds, or if I have a good coupon, or if there's a sale (like at Borders that time....:whew:) but I simply can NOT afford to buy all my "fun" books at full price. The local libraries SUCK, big time - honestly, *I* have more knitting/weaving/spinning book then both of them put together, and I probably have more SF books then them, too. (Which are my 2 favorite genres). So....the libraries are out for *me* for fun reading. (Don't even bring up ILL - I've been waiting a good 4 years now for a spinning book I requested - I ended up finding it on eBay. They STILL haven't gotten it in at the library!)

And....most (not all, granted) of the e-books I have, I ALSO have printed copies. Jean Auel? Got all but the newest one in print. Ditto Diana Galbadon, and Neil Gaimon, and Isaac Asimov, and Robert Heinlein, and and and....if it weren't for "lending" libraries of e-books, I'd be broker than I already am, having to buy digital copies of all of them. :sigh: (I will confess that I don't have any hard copies of Eric Flint's books - yet. I haven't been to a bookstore since I discovered him! :lol: And yes, I'll end up buying a few of his in print, just for the principle of the thing.)

I just.....I can't buy 2 or 3 copies of each book - like, say, for the kids, for school. Amazon won't allow you to put it on more than 1 device (and that's assuming they'll sell it in a format my reader can handle, or that Calibre can re-format) either 1 kid can haul the ebook around while the other is chained to the 'puter, or I have to purchase 2 copies. That's not right......I mean, with a print book I can read it, hand it to Himself, who can read it and hand it to Herself, and so on.....but with DRM, we're stuck.

I'm not trying to cut the author's royalty payments...but I don't understand why libraries aren't getting the same flack. It's...the same thing, really - 1 copy that hundreds of people can read. I'm not sure, even, why Half-Price doesn't get zinged - I mean, they're profiting on re-selling books, and I haven't heard any publishers whine about *that* (or garage sales, or thrift stores....I mean, really. What's the difference???)

:sigh: For the moment, I'm hunting free sites, and I try to avoid the obvious non-legal ones. I'm not sure what a real solution would be - again, I don't want to hurt author's royalty streams, but.......I dunno. I'm rambling, instead of cleaning.

Guess I need to go clean something.....
fiberaddict: (LOTR: Gimli Lumberjack)
but *we* have gotten almost NO rain. Just enough to wet the ground, not enough to actually do any good. :sigh: I'm now glad we did NOT put in a garden this year - we're already on water restrictions, so it would be dead.

Books: Looked at the 2 Cavitch books last night. I.....can't recommend them. There's nothing *wrong* with them, but....I don't like attitudes in books, and there is one. Soapmaking is *hard*, y'all, and if ya don't do it JUST like her, then.....that's crap, BTW. Soapmaking is NOT hard, and there are various ways of accomplishing things.

The books were also written before stick blenders took the soaping world by storm...she recommends a stand mixer. Fine, but they (so I hear) tend to whip in air, which can mess up the batch.

Her recipes look good - I want to resize some of them and try them out. :grin: She's got a couple for shampoo bars - which look surprisingly like the one I came up with myself :preens: (Which...was pretty good, considering I just blindly picked the oils. :grin:)

Moving on...

We broke down and got a Novo Cream separator. We have the manual one from the Ukraine.....I can, now, tentatively endorse it. With the caveat that you find a manual for an English one - yes, we got a translated manual. No, it still made no sense.

The Novo manual does - and the 2 machines look almost identical (of course, 1 is electric....:grin:). Same plastic parts, same metal parts.....we have discovered that the Ukraine one didn't have the tools you need to properly dismantle it to clean it. :sigh: Can you say Disgusting? :ick: We're going to get it all cleaned and reassembled, and I'll try it - once we get the electric one up and running. So far, it runs, and the milk doesn't spill out (which happened with the Ukraine one, because we didn't get it up to speed before pouring in the milk.), but we can't get it to separate the cream. I think we need to readjust the's all trial and error, but we WILL get cream. Soon. I need butter!

Gotta skitter!


fiberaddict: (Default)

April 2019



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