Tuesday, May 31, 2011

Teaser Tuesdays

Teaser Tuesdays is a weekly bookish meme, hosted by MizB of Should Be Reading. Anyone can play along! Just do the following:
•Grab your current read
•Open to a random page
•Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
•Share the title & author

Afterward, you got up to take a shower, pounding hot, to wash the whole thing away, and you knew that it was the last time you'd make love to your husband. "That's terrible when you know it's the last time," Nina says. "But you always know."

~p. 17, "An Italian Affair" by Laura Fraser

Monday, May 30, 2011

Monday Must Haves - Books

Welcome to Monday Must-Haves, my place for cataloguing all those things I see in my day-to-day existence that I just gotta have. This week, I've seen 2 different items that have to do with books. This first is an actual book and the second is a place to put your book.

I've heard about this book on some morning shows, and friends of mine have been sharing info on it on Facebook. The book is called Go the F**k to Sleep by Adam Mansbach. This is clearly not a book for children, but rather "the secret anthem of tired parents everywhere." I can't wait to get my hands on this book for a little levity. It can be so frustrating when those little ones just won't go to sleep, or stay asleep. Why not laugh about it?!
This second item comes to me from a family member. She's turning into quite an avid reader, and she came across this little diddy online. It's called The Book Seat Book Holder. She loves this thing. After seeing it in person myself, it is fantastic. It's soft and molds to any position. You can read on your side in bed. It can sit next to your computer. It holds all different book sizes. The page holder is firm so the pages don't flip. There's even a pocket in back for reading glasses, pen, whatever. And it comes in different colors. Super cute must-have!

Musing Mondays

MizB at Should Be Reading hosts Musing Mondays. This week’s musing asks…Describe the last time you were stumped for something to read, and you took measures to remedy that — either by going to the bookstore, the library, or shopping elsewhere. What book did you choose? Did it get you out of your slump?

Although, like everyone else, I have a loaded bookshelf, there are times when nothing speaks to me. I sometimes browse Amazon to see recent releases or best sellers. Oprah's website also offers a monthly list of book recommendations that never let me down. If I need an instant fix, I head to the bookstore and will ALWAYS find a book that's calling me.

Saturday, May 28, 2011

Quote it Saturday

PhotobucketFreda's Voice hosts Quote It Saturday. To play along, just add a quote. It can be any quote, even song lyrics. Be sure to tell us who said it, even if it was anonymous.

"I know for sure that what we dwell on is who we become."
~Oprah Winfrey


Call Me Kate at Show My Face hosts Six Word Saturday. Want to play along? All that's necessary to participate is to describe your life (or something) in a phrase using just six words.

Another son, another birthday party - yay!

Friday, May 27, 2011

Aloha Friday

Kailani at An Island Life started Aloha Friday. Want to play along? I ask a question, you answer the question in the comments. You can also ask your own question on your blog. Here's my question:
What are you cooking for dinner?

No Filter Friday

Time to take off the tape and say what's on my mind. Happy Memorial Day Weekend everyone!
  1. I love Oprah and will miss her show dearly, but I have to say I was a bit disappointed in her big 2-day finale this week. Some of the special guests she had on this so-called extravaganza weren't so great. There were some touching moments honoring Oprah, but some of it seemed awkward, i.e. Tom Cruise sitting next to Oprah holding her hand - ugh! Oh and I pray to God I never hear that horrible rendition of Amazing Grace by Aretha Franklin again. Talk about mutilating a beautiful song!
  2. Lady Gaga is on every possible show promoting her new album so I'm feeling a little Gaga'd out. I think she is a great talent but her costumes and antics overshadow her abilities.
  3. Both of my boys have Fifth Disease. For those of you who don't know what Fifth Disease is, it's a rash basically all over your body. It doesn't itch. You don't get a fever. It's just a butt-ugly rash. Once the rash is exposed on your body, you're no longer contagious. You are contagious 3 days prior to the rash. WTF is that? When you have absolutely no symptoms, you're contagious? Once you have the symptoms, you're fine? I should've kept them home before I knew they had anything but now they can go anywhere. Like I want to bring my kids out in public with this scary-looking rash. I'm their mother and I'm afraid of them.

Friday Friends

Friday Finds

MizB at Should Be Reading hosts Friday Finds. What great books did you hear about/discover this past week? Share with us your FRIDAY FINDS!

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Theme Thursday - Conversation

Theme Thursdays

Theme Thursday is a fun weekly event hosted by Kavyen at Reading Between Pages. Anyone can participate. Here are the rules:
•A theme will be posted each week
•Select a conversation/snippet/sentence from the current book you are reading
•Mention the author and the title of the book along with your post
•It is important that the theme is conveyed in the sentence (you don’t necessarily need to have the word)

This week’s theme is CONVERSATION.

"I made a lunch date with Tanya Ross. I was attracted to her, and we both spoke art, which meant the conversation never ran dry: we could talk about artists, shows, openings, museums, prices, collectors, Europe, the Prado, uptown, downtown, gossip, theory, Bilbao, the Guggenheim, little-known works at the Met, the Frick, Isabella Stuart Gardner, Chuck Close, Florine Stettheimer, and sales."
~An Object of Beauty by Steve Martin

Booking Through Thursday

Booking Through Thursday is a weekly meme about (mostly) books and reading. This week's meme asks . . . Do you ever feel like you’re in a reading rut? That you don’t read enough variety? That you need to branch out, spread your literary wings and explore other genres, flavors, styles?

My husband would definitely say I'm in a reading rut, but I enjoy all the adult fiction I read. I should probably branch out more into memoirs, biographies and other non-fiction works. I also should read some of those classics that got past me while I was in school. But I still love my "summer reads."

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Stylish Invitations and Greeting Cards

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This is a paid post. The opinions are not mine, but those of the advertiser.

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Hoo Are You?

Hoo Are You is hosted by Night Owl Crafting. If you want to play along, just answer the following questions in a post and link up. Here are this week's questions:
1. What is your favorite thing cooked on the bbq? Corn on the cob
2. How do you celebrate Memorial Day? My son's birthday is always around Memorial Day so we have a party.

3. Do you like your handwriting? I do - I combine printing and cursive.

4. Do you still have your tonsils? Yes.

5. Do you untie your shoes when you take them off? I don't have many shoes that lace, but I think I do.

Monday, May 23, 2011

Monday Must Haves - DVF

I come across so many fabulous things either reading magazines and newspapers or watching television programs, and I can't seem to remember them all. In an effort to keep track of all these wonderful things, and to share them with you, I'm going to start cataloguing them here in Monday Must Haves.

Her name is synonymous with that gorgeous creation known as the wrap dress. I just love the wrap dress. It's so forgiving for every body type.
But did you know Diane Von Furstenberg is branching out into linens, bedding and serveware? It's true, and I think it's fun, fun, fun! Here's a peek at some of her items on sale at Bloomingdale's:
 Napkin Rings
 Serving Trays
Serving Plate

I don't typically splurge on a Bloomingdale's shopping spree, I'm more of a Home Goods kind of girl, but I just wanted to share these fashion-forward housewares that I came across. Don't forget, you could always just splurge for a wrap-dress instead.

Meet Me On Monday

Java from Never Growing Old hosts Meet Me On Monday. Every Sunday Never Growing Old will post five get to know you questions that you can copy and paste into your own Monday post and we can all learn a little more about each and every one of us!! Here are this week's questions:

1. What is your favorite bagel flavor? Sesame

2. If you had an extra $100 right now, what would you spend it on? A Home Goods shopping trip

3. What is the last thing that you felt guilt about doing? Eating a cupcake after dinner last night

4. Soft serve ice cream or hand dipped? Soft serve vanilla (yum)

5. Are you allergic to anything? Bee stings

Sunday, May 22, 2011

The Monmouth County Cupcake Manhunt

I don't know about you but I love cake. The best part of most events is the cake at the end. Then the glorification of the cupcake came along, and I was hooked. I served a room full of 5 year olds cupcakes at my son's 5th birthday party - and it was delightful!

There are quite a few shows on now that involve cupcakes: Cupcake Wars, DC Cupcakes, The Cupcake Girls, Cupcake Sisters. I'm sure I'm missing some, but those are the ones that come to mind. I'm a sucker for these shows, especially Cupcake Wars on the Food Network.
This show challenges bakers from different cupcake bakeries to make cupcakes using certain ingredients within a fixed period of time. Not only is the show entertaining with its creativity, it gives small bakeries a chance to get some exposure. And there are lots of cupcake bakeries out there, except around here.
My new mission is to find local cupcake bakeries. I'm unaware of specific cupcake bakeries in the area, but I'm they must be here somewhere. I do know of one bakery, Ye Olde Pie Shoppe, that makes FANTASTIC cupcakes. But I want to find a cupcake-specific bakery and just marvel at all I see . . . and taste.
My manhunt is officially underway, and I'll be sure to keep you abreast of my findings. You realize, of course, this is all just an excuse to eat cupcakes.

Social Sunday

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Quote It Saturday

PhotobucketFreda's Voice hosts Quote It Saturday. To play along, just add a quote. It can be any quote, even song lyrics. Be sure to tell us who said it, even if it was anonymous.

"You need to learn how to select your thoughts just the same way you select your clothes every day." ~ Elizabeth Gilbert


Call Me Cate at Show My Face hosts Six Word Saturday.Want to play along? All that's necessary to participate is to describe your life (or something) in a phrase using just six words.

Yard sales are calling my name. 

Friday, May 20, 2011

No Filter Friday

I've got a few things to let fly this week. Time to take off the filter:
  1. Arnold, Arnold, Arnold. Are you kidding me? You father a child with the housekeeper while your wife is pregnant. It's bad enough men cheat. Are they so stupid they can't use protection? Amazing that the "love child" was kept secret for so long. PS and by the way, pathetic that you cheat with plain Jane while you're married to Maria Shriver. Just goes to show, men will stick it in anything!
  2. This French IMF boss, Dominique Strauss-Kahn, is a piece of work. The old codger is arrested for raping the hotel maid and has the balls to say it was consensual. Is that why she reported it to the authorities? Because she consented? Men need to give up saying that rape is consensual. Believe me, if the woman enjoyed it, you wouldn't be behind bars. You'd be Arnold Schwarzenegger.
  3. In light of this week's top stories about cheating men and men sexually assaulting hotel maids, I expressed my disgust to my hubby. What is it with men and sex? Why do they need more than 1 woman to have sex with? His clever comment was a la Chris Rock: "Men are only as faithful as their options." You want an option? Keep your pants on. How's that for an option!?!

Friday Finds

MizB at Should Be Reading hosts Friday Finds. What great books did you hear about/discover this week? Here are a few gems I found this week:

The Great Night by Chris Adrian
Say Her Name by Francisco Goldman
The Final Testament of the Holy Bible by James Frey

The Viagra Diaries by Barbara Rose Brooker

Aloha Friday

Kailani at An Island Life started Aloha Friday. Want to play along? I ask a question, you answer the question in the comments. You can also ask your own question on your blog. Here's my question:

Heels or flats?

Follow Friday 40 and Over


I'm thrilled to be chosen as the featured blog this week at the Follow Friday 40 and Over blog hop hosted by Java at Never Growing Old. Hop on over and make some fabulous friends! Happy Friday everyone!

Thursday, May 19, 2011

Jon Bon Jovi: A Fine Philanthropist

I read an article that said Jon Bon Jovi is Number 8 on the Forbes Top 100 Celebrity list. His recent concert tour is one of the highest grossing tours this year, placing him in the same category as young-uns Justin Bieber and Lady Gaga. Hard to believe after all these years, he's still got it. But he's got it in so many ways.

Let's face it - he's hot. That bone structure. Those eyes. All good. He's a talented singer and songwriter. Nothing to sneeze at. But he's also a philanthropist. Habitat for Humanity is a wonderful project he's a part of building homes in the Philadelphia area.

Now he's opening a restaurant, some say as soon as July, in Red Bank, NJ, serving people whether they can pay or not. Basically, customers are asked to pay, but if they can't, they're expected to do volunteer charity work in return for their meal.

It's nice to see a local boy do good. And it doesn't hurt that the local boy also looks good.

From this       To this

It's all good! Rock on, JBJ!!

Booking Through Thursday

Booking Through Thursday is a weekly meme about (mostly) books and reading. In contrast to last week’s question–What do you think of censoring books BECAUSE of their intended age? Say, books too “old” for your kids to read?

Interesting question. I don't believe in holding children back. I think if you expect more of them, they will rise to the occasion. As for certain books, I think it all depends on the content of the book. I think if the book is previewed by the parent and found to be suitable for a specific child, then of course let the child read it. If a child is interested in something above his/her age level, that's a good thing (in most cases). Again, we're talking about books. If a child can handle it, by all means, read away.

Wednesday, May 18, 2011

My Top Ten Guilty Pleasures

Something's going on with me and reality tv. I can't seem to get enough of it; however, I don't watch every crazy thing out there. I was never a fan of Survivor or The Biggest Loser. I started with the "talent" shows like American Idol and then somehow moved into interesting family life. Now I think I watch talent, family life and everything in-between. What makes it worse is there are new shows every week, at least I find new ones every week. Seriously, look at this list I found. Of course I find a new show every week!

In an effort to get a grip on exactly how pathetic my viewing habits have become, I'm cataloguing the reality television that somehow entered my reality. Some I watch religiously and others I watch when nothing else is on (wink, wink.) This list is fluid and it could change tomorrow, but for now, here's my Top 10 List of Reality TV Guilty Pleasures:
  1. Project Runway
  2. Real Housewives of New Jersey
  3. Dancing With the Stars
  4. Sister Wives
  5. Say Yes to the Dress
  6. Jerseylicious
  7. Mob Wives (don't judge me)
  8. Cash Cab
  9. Hoarding: Buried Alive (this one freaks me out)
  10. The Stagers

WWW Wednesdays

MizB at Should Be Reading hosts W.W.W. Wednesdays. To play along, just answer the following three (3) questions…

• What are you currently reading?
An Object of Beauty by Steve Martin

• What did you recently finish reading?
A Pebble to Polish by Janet Lord Leszl

• What do you think you’ll read next?
An Italian Affair by Laura Fraser

Monday, May 16, 2011

Monday Musings

MizB at Should Be Reading hosts Monday Musings. This week’s musing asks…The local Catholic school board is closing its school libraries, and parents and teachers –and even the students– are in an uproar. Budget cuts demanded that the board choose something to get rid of… they choose libraries. As such, many librarians have lost their jobs. And, the board is moving the books to the classrooms, instead. They feel that it is a good solution.

What do you think? Should the schools be without an actual “library” room? Is this a good solution?

I personally have fond memories of my school library. I love all libraries. All those books lined up on shelves, the fact that you need to be quiet, sitting at a table quietly reading - you can't get any of that if the books are in a classroom. Yes, kids will still have access to the same books, but the atmosphere makes a difference. The setting can instill a desire to read, and I feel that's what libraries do. They create a special place designated to reading. While it's a feasible solution to put the books in the classroom, I'm afraid the cutbacks will likely cut back the number of children who desire to read.

Sunday, May 15, 2011

How to Save a Life

I read an article recently in my local newspaper about New Jersey ranking the lowest in registered organ donors in the country. I was surprised by this at first, then I became curious. Why are we last?

I suppose I could start by asking myself that question since I'm not a registered donor. When I couldn't come up with an answer after 10 minutes, I asked hubs. He read a theory once that said "blue" states often look to the government to take care of problems and fix things and, perhaps, that applied to this situation as well. Maybe, but aren't there "bluer" states than NJ out there? Why are we last?

I took it upon myself to perform my own personal study. I decided to ask friends and family if they were registered organ donors. I started, where else? Facebook. I put the question out there and within 1 hour, I had 5 organ donors. Maybe those who weren't donors were ashamed to say so. Again, I wonder why?

Maybe it has something to do with trust. You're in an accident. The EMTs arrive. You're seriously injured and require immediate medical assistance. They dig up your identification and find out you're an organ donor. Do they rush to get you the assistance you need? Do they stop for a cup of coffee on the way to the hospital? You get to the hospital and are on life support. Do they start harvesting your organs before you're actually "dead?"

These are all valid questions and concerns. Or are they? Aren't there rules EMTs, doctors, nurses follow? Aren't there laws about this sort of thing? If you're critically wounded, you're not going to use your organs anyway. You're critical. This is about saving someone else. About being selfless. About helping your fellow human being. I'd hate to think it was a Jersey thing. It's a people thing.

Saturday, May 14, 2011

Action Adventure Aversion

Every once in a while, hubs and I actually get a chance to watch a movie. The kids will go to bed early enough so there's a 2-hour window for us to catch something on cable or on-demand before I drift off to lala land.

Last night we happened to be lucky. Playing on-demand was Salt, a film starring Angelina Jolie that I remember seeing commercials for a while back and had enough action to hold hubs' interest. I came to a sudden realization about 20 minutes into the film. I hate action-packed movies. I don't care who's starring in it, I get bored with all the chases and shootings. The twists and turns in a film usually keep me going despite the incessant car chases, but last night I gave in. With about 30 minutes left until the end, I was asleep on the couch.

I'm tired of forcing myself to try to enjoy something that I clearly don't enjoy. Action adventures just aren't my cup of tea, and I just need to accept that. Give me a good romance, some drama, even - dare I say - a good musical, I'm all in. Not a chance I'm snoozing through one of those films. I think there's only so much action I can take, and then I simply need a nap.


Call Me Cate at Show My Face hosts Six Word Saturday. Want to play along? All that's necessary to participate is to describe your life (or something) in a phrase using just six words.

So many books, so little time.