Saturday, July 1, 2017

2017 is skipping along... and Happy Canada Day, eh

I wish Canada Day fell on any other day than today. Like tomorrow.  Not meaning I don't think that July 1st isn't a grand day to celebrate the birth of one's nation, but it just didn't work out for me or mine this year. Frankly, I was done today.  Really didn't want to see anyone except my family.  We didn't go anywhere, celebrate, or really do anything interesting.

Regardless, I am a proud Canadian, and Happy Canada Day! I am so grateful to have our home and our community, and to have been able to have a quiet day in our space.

I needed a quiet day of puttering around the house, putting things were they belonged, trying to make sense of things.

June is such a crazy month. If I used to get sick after exams in December, now it seems that June takes me out at some point.  In 2015 I believe it was Norwalk I got for the Canada Day weekend, this year it was a bought of bronchitis or pneumonia I caught on the plane ride home from Halifax.  Just not fair. I loved the east coast. It just didn't seem fair coughing on the plane, feeling that chest pain, knowing I was screwed.  Then the kids got some kind of stomach flu, and my DH was just done. Poof. There went another week.  That weekend didn't really exist in my books.

June is filled with so many wrap up events, and then we decided to host birthday parties for both boys. I am appalled at how terrible some of the parents were about RSVP.  Especially knowing that we were hosting GOOD parties that had dollar figures attached to them. I think some of those parents are wankers, and they have no idea how their lack of responses felt to my kids.  JERKS.  It also makes your kids wonder about themselves, was it about them? Was it something else entirely? Small kids, big hurts. Things worked out in the end, but not without me going sideways and we will never host birthday parties like that again. It really reinforced if you have a few buddies that you connect with on a deep level, everything else is just gravy.

I got caught up in the big gaggle of friends for a while in my early 20s - it was exciting - I was a late bloomer and we had some amazing times.  As you get older, it goes back to that core group of people that are like your extended family that you chose that you end up having time to connect with that get you on a level that most people don't.

So, I will work more magic to try to capture some of the reads that have kept me busy, if only because they provide some kind of framework and pacing to my year.

Kids passed their school years, and concussions still suck.  We do not understand nearly enough about our brains, and how to properly treat brain injuries. Our lives have changed because of concussions. What we have been through in the last seven months makes the other concussions pale in comparison.

Friday, June 30, 2017

Lily and the Octopus

This was a book I picked up because I was out of books! The cover caught me, and it seemed that all the author comments on the back of the book were from author's that we had read for book club.  How can you go wrong?

This was a lovely and different book.  The Octopus was a way to avoid calling a cancerous lump, cancer.  It is about life moving forward through those moments that you would like to stall (aging pets) and about finding a mate, and loss, and friendship. It is a quick read, a little different, a little whimsical. I would have to admit there is one section that really threw me off a bit, but I survived.

I feel I should mention I am currently getting mauled by cat.

Friday, June 23, 2017

Dark Matter

I liked this, I am sure I did.

I am drawing a bit of blank in this moment to capture how I really felt.

Okay, maybe it is coming back to me now... interesting book.  What happens if there are multiple versions of the universe that are created as we make landmark choices in our life, and what if we discovered a way to access those different versions of our life, or a different version of us wanted our life and hijacked what we have? Definitely a bit mind bending.  Perhaps my June brain appreciated this, but didn't delve that far in to the consequences of it.

Friday, June 16, 2017

The Court of Lions

Ah. That one book by an author that changes your relationship with them.

I loved the Tenth Gift when I read it years ago..  and then ended up with a copy of the Salt Road.

I understand we all create a niche, but this one just went a bit far in a few places and I found by the end, the story lost me.

Some of the history was interesting, but the interwoven story this time just didn't do it for me.

Wednesday, June 7, 2017

Mental note.

So, when you are getting sick, and you are on a plane, this is not the best book to be reading.

Who knew?

Futuristic novel about what happens after a really bad disease wipes out a lot of humanity and we are set back decades.

How much has really stuck with me since I read this flying across Canada, promptly got sick, and spent the next four days in bed? Yeah, more of feelings, and that it was a good book, but not ultimately the right time to appreciate it fully.

Tuesday, June 6, 2017

A Conjuring of Light

I loved this book.

This was one of the best trilogies that I have ever read. If you like edgier magical fantasy, this is a book for you.

I will also remember reading this book at Peggy's Cove in Halifax, NS.

I sat on these rocks, with a mocha, and read for about an hour. Alone. It was lovely. Listening to the Atlantic Ocean, basking in the sun, reading a grand book. Perfect.  Being able to connect with my loved ones with my phone, amazing.

I brought two books on my trip, and it was just enough.

Read this one.

Wednesday, May 31, 2017


This is a really good book that I cannot remember what list I pulled it from. I try to read a range of books. Really, why get tied down to one type.  This book has also now been included as part of the three books that Stanford asks incoming grads to read over the summer before they evolve in to university students.


This novel is set as a series of short chapters.  Each chapter is a generation, and the novel is set following two family lines originating from one woman. One family line seems to have somewhat worse luck and ends up in America as slaves until they can achieve freedom, and the one family stays in Africa, not really free either.

Some big ideas, some moving chapters, a different appreciation, a good conversation with my book club ladies.

This is not an easy topic to tackle and I think it is well done.  I don't normally like short stories, but it worked for me within this novel.

Friday, May 26, 2017

Those people.

Months later, catching up.  What do I have to say about this book?

This is well written, and a bit unsettling.

What happens if you discover your spouse has a secret? And when this secret comes out, it rocks your whole community.

What if you are middle aged, and not really in love with each other, and you kind of need each other since this is how you have grown together.

Lots of little questions. What happens to your kids? Yourself? Your identity? How do you move on?

Provoking book, and far better than some in this genre.

Thursday, May 11, 2017

Why only two???

I really enjoyed this.

Why only two books in this series?

Such fun characters and I really enjoyed these two books, way more than the Grisha trilogy.  Highly entertaining.

Wednesday, May 10, 2017

A turn for the better

A whole different cast of characters but the same world as the Grisha-verse.

I enjoyed this book way more than all three books of the Grisha trilogy.

Way more dynamic characters that captured my imagination way more than the last book.  I like the twists and turns, and the chase.
Fun read.

Friday, May 5, 2017

New series

This will do.

It is hard when series you love are done.

It is hard to figure out what is next.  I am going to peck away at this series, it definitely feels more YA than some of the others I have read in the past few years, but I think it will provide entertainment.

It will be interesting to see how the characters evolve in this universe. It has been a few weeks since I finished this one, and will read book 2 next week.

I am not sure what will be my next big thing that captures me and makes me burn through the pages.

Tuesday, April 18, 2017

My tribe.

Eventually I will try to link this post to a book I just read that inspired the title of this post. (look at that, saving this original post as a draft has allowed me to do just that! my bar is currently set pretty low about getting this blog/record keeping of random thoughts/books I read back up to date).

I was going to start with saying that I have had an interesting week, but in what I do and in my life, it seems that most weeks are pretty interesting, just saying.

Almost two weeks ago I decided to have an open mind and try the massage therapist at the physio clinic my DH has been going to for vestibular therapy.  Yes, that is a very fancy word for concussion treatment.  Normally I have gone with a personal referral, but this time I figured since DH is here anyways, and my lower back seems to give me grief, and it seems that my left side has done weird things for a while, it would be a good idea to try to do some self-care.

A long story short - the treatment was okay.  The RMT talked way more than I do, and had some interesting things to say. It would appear I am really tight through my glut muscles, and likely have very weak core muscles, especially on the left side which is causing part of my issues. It felt like he was putting me off more to the physio, like I could see him maybe one more time and then whatever. That was off-putting more in the sense of for an hour initial visit, it really didn't feel like we had a plan, or that they had an understanding of me.  I think a few of my points were also missed.  The other part was the almost racial comments made throughout the session.  They were Asian. Frankly I don't give a damn what race you are as long as you are a good person. They made multiple comments about Caucasians, almost negatively, and these were comments about their friends.  I also told them what I do for a living, and they felt they could never do my job because they would feel so many of their clients are entitled, and don't work hard enough and wouldn't be able to do it.

Fair enough.  I have a weirdly stressful job that has strange and beautiful benefits.

I did book a follow up appointment, but I struggled with it all weekend.  I broke the appointment on Monday and decided to go to the physio instead.

See, in my work, I see students.  They are coming to me for help.  I am not judging them by colour, size, race, religion, sexual orientation, etc.  In that moment, they are a student, seeking help.  We all have our biases, but I really try to move away from that.  We are also trying to teach our kids about that - we have dear friends that are gay, and they don't even bat an eye about it because it was a conversation and that was it. Still boggles  my mind when I reflect on what a process this was back in the day when I started university and a few friends came "out".

Sometimes not getting what you want is a good thing. I started this post back in February? March? Part of it was a response to what we are going through and going to a RMT and not quite getting what I signed up for but got some great mental processing and a gut check from to moving towards something better and that we are doing as a couple (head and lower back therapy (something to be said about a couple that is vulnerable together by doing physio together) and part as a response to the book I was reading (Furiously Happy by Jenny Lawson).

I really enjoyed parts of this book, found some parts dragged a little, and other times it really resonated with me.  I don't generally read a lot of non-fic, but this is one that I would recommend, especially if you are a little off kilter and not quite as normal as your peers, as I think perchance at times am I. I mean to check out her blog more... but then I find that time seems to slip through my fingers like sand in a glass.

Perfect read for a long weekend

I read the Grisha series, and I like it.

Weirdly enough, I loved this book much more! I liked having the multiple characters in a crazy adventure.  The part I find a bit interesting is how many gay characters now show up in YA books. Growing up, you would never expect to see am LGBTQ character, and now they are quite commonplace! It is kind of a neat evolution to see happen. Different voices are important, and moving them away from "other" is even more important.

This was a speedy read, and it is one half of a duology.  I will likely read the second one soon. Good fantasy stuff.

Wednesday, April 12, 2017

The lure of Africa...

I enjoyed this one. I can't quite put my finger on the book that this reminds me of, but I really liked Beryl's spunk and that she carved her own path across Kenya as a woman.

I think I will need to watch Out of Africa just to see some of these real life characters played out again.

Thursday, March 30, 2017

Ruin and Rising

Perhaps when I am merely trying to track the books I read, I can start with their title, as the post title. Who knew.  Saves me from thinking up some masterful title that really is like a flash in the pan.

I enjoyed this series, but I did find that my attention did wane a bit. I started reading quicker, and less impressions were left behind.


Tuesday, March 14, 2017

Better than many!

This one surprised me! I like mysteries, but the popular ones seem to miss the mark IMHO.

This is a great page turner, decent writing, and you aren't quite able to figure out all the parks.

Wednesday, February 15, 2017

Last post was November? Wow.

Where have the last three months gone?

Likely I will work some revisionist history to fill in some reading gaps, but it is hard to believe that I find myself in the middle of February, finally taking a few moments to consider this thing I still call my blog.

Life is challenging.  It is still sweet, but it certainly requires effort and planning.

So many moving parts, so many ways to stretch, so much you don't realize you can do until you find yourself doing it.

We had a great family holiday in November down to Great Wolf Lodge and Seattle, some amazing side trips in December, like the Polar Express at the West Coast Heritage Railway, saw a play with mom, we cut down our family tree, already these celebrations seem like a long time ago.

We have also had this snow event that started on December 5th and really is only now starting to relent. I never thought I would get tired of snow.  I have.  Our west coast snow wore out it's welcome before Christmas and is rapidly melting now under an onslaught of tropical rain. I am over this snow.  It was exciting, then troubling, and then it took out my dear husband in our driveway.  Concussions suck.  Especially for all the reasons you cannot see. That changed my relationship with our snow this year.  Carving away the snow angel in our driveway, gulping away tears.  Yeah.  Snow doesn't seem so much fun in those moments.

West coasters also don't know how to drive in snow.  So driving down the "hill" was interesting.  We don't seem to get it right for calling snow days... either they are anticlimactic, or when they do get called, it is well past the point of safety and you have to get around the folks that are scared shitless and the wankers that think they can drive the same in the snow as they do every other day.  Makes for some great commutes.

It is hard to make time, take time, carve it out for all the things you want to accomplish in a day.

I am trying really hard to find some balance - watch some good shows, finish some baby blankets, organize our house a little better, god forbid get some exercise...   Let's see if some good intentions can get at least some book posts done.

Wednesday, February 8, 2017

new series..

Once again, reworking my reading history.  Hence the very short reactions to books I read months ago that I am posting in a mad panic.  This is a Canadian author from out east (looks like mainly Quebec) and this is the first book.  I enjoyed it, the characters aren't perfect, and young, and charmed. I think I could bite my teeth in to more.

Wednesday, January 11, 2017


Really, there haven't been many Rankin's I haven't enjoyed. I enjoy the Rebus books.  I like having read so many of them, and the weaving of the plot lines.  It is interesting watching characters age, and how priorities and thoughts shift. Needless to say, I will read more of these.