Tuesday, December 29, 2015



After all the years of living here and having trains shake our house... we had an earthquake last night about 11:40... So much for an almost early night after watching a few Vikings episodes...  (more knitting and watching a season of TV in the span of a week.. at  least there are only 10 episodes per season!!).

I was reading my book, and all of a sudden, everything shook in our room, and then stopped.  Everyone slept through it until I woke up poor K.. .a couple of neighbours came out... so I knew I wasn't nuts... rushed back in and you could see on the internet everyone's reactions.

A bit of a thrill!

Weird, especially given a few weeks ago, Ken talked in his sleep.. his only word.. Earthquake.  Very coincidental.

I guess 2015 shook a few things up - there is a bit of symbolism that could be read there.

Monday, December 28, 2015

Old school style suspenseful romance

This felt a bit like an Agatha Christie - a novel that harkens from a different time.  Perhaps a little simpler, little less over the top drama, and definitely for entertainment.

Who would want to read Shakespeare's Tempest and visit Corfu after reading a book like this?  It felt like I should be on my beach blanket, sun bathing, watching the kids and reading this book.

This is a decent suspense, sprinkled with a bit of romance.  It feels a bit far fetched, however it is well crafted ... maybe a little like a modern day Janet Evankovitch?

I don't really think that I am going to wax poetic about this read.

Tuesday, December 22, 2015

One foot in front of the other...

We watched Santa Clause is Comin to Town tonight... really and truly a Christmas classic that totally stands the test of time.  When I hear this song, I think of Brandon learning how to walk.  I also think about Change.  I think about making the decision to change, and how it really truly begins with a simple step.  Like many things in life, change is practise. It gets easier with practise, much like this whole business in the living of life. 

Put One Foot in Front of the Other 

Jules Bass and Maury Laws, 1970
Winter: I really am a mean and despicable creature at heart, you know. It's so difficult to... [sighs] really change.
Kris: Difficult? [chuckles] Why, why look here. Changing from bad to good's as easy as...taking your first step.
Put one foot in front of the other
And soon you'll be walking 'cross the floor.
You put one foot in front of the other
And soon you'll be walking out the door.
You never will get where you're going
If ya never get up on your feet.
Come on, there's a good tail wind blowin'
A fast walking man is hard to beat.
If you want to change your direction,
If your time of life is at hand,
Well, don't be the rule, be the exception
A good way to start is to stand.
Winter: If I want to change the reflection
I see in the mirror each morn...
Kris: Oh, you do.
Winter: You mean that it's just my election?
Kris: Just that.
Winter: To vote for a chance to be reborn? Woo-hoo!
You put one foot in front of the other, and
Soon you are walking
'Cross the floor
You put one foot in front of the other, and
[a tempo]
Soon you are walking out the door
Put one foot in front of the other
And soon you are walking 'cross the floor
Put one foot in front of the other
And soon...
You'll be walking...
Out the door!

Monday, December 21, 2015

Exceeded reading goal for 2015

#51!!! With almost two weeks to go!!

This was a solid, good book and reminded me of the books I used to read when I was younger (historical romances).  Granted, it was far better written than most of what I used to read.

I can see a familiar pattern after reading a few books, however, Kearsley delivers a satisfying read that gives you a hint of romance with historical details.  I like how a bit of earth magic is woven in to weave together the past and the present.  It seems to match my overall impression that life is not always what it seems to be and that there can be unexplained connections between people.

I want to travel to Scotland and Ireland again.  It may take a long time, but it is a place I would like to return to.  I enjoy reading books about the ancient spaces of both countries, and including England.  I do feel a connection to coastal areas, including our own. I think the one thing I could say about Kearsley's books is that sometimes the historical storyline dominates the overall stories, and I would almost like more of the  modern thread than what is given. Both stories pull me along and one seems to get less attention than the other.

Tuesday, December 15, 2015

My Christmas Boys - 2015

My Christmas Boys 2014

Ten days before Christmas, and where is the spirit?

This whole year has been different. Some amazing highs and lows, and I think, lots of personal growth.  I have learned a few things this year, whether or not I wanted to, both personally and professionally. I truly look forward to a new year, and kick starting a new cycle.  I have been teasing the kids about doing a polar bear swim again this year... it seems fitting to wash away the old symbolically and starting out a new year.

It is hard to believe that Christmas is in 10 days.  I think I will even have Christmas Eve off and I will have an 11 day break from work. In this moment, that is  more exciting than the big event. I am hopeful to get off some Christmas cards in the next few days.  I want to print out the kids school pictures. I need to make a list of what we need to pick up, and we need to get the tree up.  I would really like to get some baking done, and maybe have the kids make a few crafts on Christmas Eve. We aren't doing as many gifts this year, and it feels right.  I would like to move more towards experiences we can do for each other for me and my DH, and even as a family.  The kids have lots.  It is a strange year shopping for them because they have a lot of toys. We are shifting in to more lego, more books, and video games.

I am not cooking either Christmas dinner this year - it feels strange, and liberating all at the same time.  I enjoy the craziness, but it is truly intense.  The last few years with work, and wrapping, and baking, and then the cleaning, and then two big dinners, and then fall down flat on my face.  Should make it a calmer year for all of us, and maybe even less expensive too! Typically, I can't wait for our tax return to get caught up on a few expenses... LOL

I think I will make a special meal for us for Christmas Eve. Then roll with it. Feels like a bit of a reboot.  We will also need to see Star Wars. Who knows what else we will get up to, but it seems to be coming mighty quickly. In this  moment, it feels like I have a bunch of stuff I would like to do, and the stuff I should be doing (like making cookies for the kids Christmas parties)... and I feel the urge to make some lists coming on...

Sunday, December 13, 2015

Far more interesting than zombies...

The year of reading differently continues.  This was another one that the fabulous Jen recommended an eon ago.  Another great read. The premise behind this novel is definitely unsettling. So what happens if robots are completely integrated in to human lives, and artificial intelligence gets smart, and decides that humans need to go?  This is a teaser of what this novel is about.

It is smart, it is told through a series of vignettes by a group of characters over the span of about three years.  Event leading up to a war between humans and robots, and the events leading up to a climatic battle between the lead machine and surviving humans.  It is well told, and very provocative.  As a result of the structure, I wouldn't say that the book is most amazing literary novel I have ever read, however, it is a great book to read for the fact it isn't truly to be a lofty piece of literature and what it is... it is compelling, and it leaves you with a few different thoughts about AI and human spirit by the end of it all.

I think the more we can teach our kids to think on their own and not always need to be connected to an electronic device the better.  The flip side of that is that they will still need to know how to navigate through the machines...

Tuesday, December 8, 2015

Science Fiction meets a bit of the X-Files...

This has been a year of some great reads.  Also some truly unexpected reads as well.  I can't remember the last time that I read so much science fiction.. and frankly.. I am enjoying it!

After the last book, this was a breath of fresh air and I devoured it in four days tops.  How to tell when you are engaged with a book.

This was great.  Some really interesting characters, some unexpected twists, it goes a bit Lee Child towards the end, and then provides a strangely satisfying, almost X-files type ending.

I enjoyed it.  More so because it was a book I found purely because it was listed under recommendations for those that liked The Martian...

Friday, December 4, 2015

A great and terrible......

I am struggling to not be harsh and say "a waste of my time".  There are some moments of brilliance in this book.. but they were fleeting.  I really struggled with this one.  It is considered to be YA.. and this one felt like a YA novel.  Although it deals with fantasy/magical themes... it didn't capture my imagination and it was all I could do to finish it. Alas, this will not be a trilogy I complete.

Now my big decision is whether or not to read The Fold by Peter Clines or Robopocalyse by Daniel H Wilson.  Actually I think I will go Fold and then Robots... and that will be 50 books this year!! This will be an ongoing goal for me each year to hit the 50 book reading milestone.  It is achievable and rewarding.

I have already starting thinking what are realistic goals to set for 2016... the last few years the goals I have actually achieved or come close to ... well... that is a mighty slim list!