Aug 29, 2014

What I'm Reading

Walmart is the devil.

I'm pretty sure I've spoken before about the Silhouette Shadows series which is now the Nocturne series through Harlequin. Walmart sells the Nocturnes as 2 in 1s (2 books in 1 volume), and you can buy them 3 for $15, saving yourself almost $8. I bought three, brought them home and stashed them in my office where I discovered the last three I bought. So now I have TWELVE Nocturnes to read. And no time to read them in.

And that's not all. Last week I found myself in the mall with some time on my hands, and pretty much the only store left that had any interest for me (our mall is dying a slow death) was Coles, the book store. And oh, I have a points card with that particular franchise, so I was able to pick up a copy of Neil Gaiman's The Ocean at the End of the Lane for $5.00 off. :-D

Electronic Books

No electronic reading to speak of, but I did download a few more free ones offered by Amazon through Pixel of Ink. You'd think I was gearing up for a long winter or something! ;-)

Tree Books

No progress to report on Hunting the Corrigan's Blood by Holly Lisle. Don't even ask. ;-)

There was, however, some progress made on Water For Elephants, by Sara Gruen. I'm almost halfway through it, right at the part where the circus acquires the elephant and I don't want to keep going because if it keeps to the movie story line the elephant is about to get abused and I don't want to read that.

And, as I said, I picked up a copy of Neil Gaiman's The Ocean at the End of the Lane. It just happened to be in my purse (lord love a large purse!) last night when I had to wait for a take-out order, so I started reading it. So far I find it a little sad - this young boy has a birthday party to which no one comes, but he's all right by this because he gets a new book and a kitten. But then the kitten is run over by a man who later kills himself (not because of the kitten, he has no clue what a terrible thing he's done in that respect). The boy has just met the Hempstocks, who live at the end of the lane and whom I'm sure are going to be a major influence on his story.


I actually did start re-reading another anthology. This one is in paperback and is so well-worn it's literally falling apart. Swords Against Darkness IV, edited by Andrew J. Offutt. As you might have guessed from the title, this is a book of Swords and Sorcery tales. But what you probably don't know is that it was by invitation only and contains some of the masters of the Heroic Fantasy genre.

And that's about it for the reading. Still busy, still having a hard time finding time to read. Especially when I have friends who give me games to play instead, especially my all-time favourite, Hidden Objects games. Not that I'm naming names or anything (Debby!)

So here's to a less busy week next week with more time for gaming reading. :-D

Aug 25, 2014

Maelid Monday

maelid ~ apple-nymph

So . . . I got up yesterday morning, looked at my "to-do" list, and wanted to crawl right back into bed and stay there. Or run away from home. Either would have done it for me. :-)

So I decided to rebel. I ignored my list. It wasn't exactly a day off, I still did things like make a proper dinner (which I only seem to do on Sundays or if we have company) and the laundry, and I baked a cake from a recipe my sister phoned to have me look up for her (to say she's not internet savy would be like saying a cat doesn't like to sleep).

But I didn't cut the lawns or do the vacuuming. And while it felt good to ignore these two rather important things from my list of things I really didn't want to do, I know I'm going to have to do them eventually. And it's probably going to be when I feel like doing them even less than I felt like doing them yesterday.

Sometimes it really sucks being a grownup with all the responsibilities a grownup has.

Remember the nagging thing I have going on with my friend Jamie? I have to say it's working really well for me. I've been getting lots of words in on Lucky Dog - it's over 60,000 words now. In some ways it's like a mini NaNo, I have to get the words in no matter what. And like NaNo I think a lot of what I'm writing is garbage, so I'm starting to think the reason I get obsessive about adding to it is to avoid having to edit it. :-)

So our lovely cooler weather turned into hot and muggy weather. We had a couple of days of rain, a couple of days of just being overcast, and a lot of humidity. This week - who knows? It's supposed to be cooler, but they've been wrong before. And honestly, it's not the temperature that concerns me, it's the humidity. Humidity and I just don't get along. But then does anyone like it when it's humid?

Did everyone watch the new episode of Dr. Who on the weekend? It was the first episode with the new Doctor. I had a friend try and phone me as a joke right before the episode started. She was going to give me some trumped up story about a computer emergency just to see what kind of reaction she got. Well, the joke was on her. I heard the phone ring and ignored it, letting the machine pick it up. I figured if it was important they'd leave a message. There was no message, so I didn't give it another thought. After all, the Doctor was on!

I think Peter Capaldi will do very well in the role, although I wasn't impressed with the changes that were made to the opening sequence. I could live with the updates made when Dr. Who was first brought back with Christopher Eccelston, after all there's been a lot of improvements to film making since the show last aired. But they've gone too far with this new one:

Nope. Not happy with all those clock gears at all!

This week I'm hoping to settle into a routine of sorts. The hubby did all right going into the office for half days last week, and went for the whole day on Friday. This week he's going to start with the half days and then play it by ear.

The doctor warned him that he'd get to the point where he'd start feeling good enough that he'd start slacking on all the precautions he's supposed to take, and I think he's reached that stage. He's been forgetting to use his cane, trying to bend when he shouldn't . . . He needs to be more careful 'cause a relapse would keep him chained to the house again. And if that happens I'll have to have help digging the hole in the backyard to bury his body in. ;-)

I finished the baby sweater I was working on, but not the bonnet and booties, so I don't have a picture yet. The yarn I used was white with a bit of blue and green in it, so when I went to do the finishing I thought I'd use yellow as a contrast. I should have gone with white. The yellow isn't as bright as the blue or green and it looks a little off. At least to me it does. But it is what it is and it didn't look too bad when I added the ribbon.

My goals for the week . . . get the booties and bonnet done before my appointment with the nutritionist (which I think is Thursday), get some of the editing work done that I have piling up, many more words on Lucky Dog, and maybe even relax a bit on the deck with a good book, weather permitting.

I lead such an exciting life, don't I? ;-)

Aug 22, 2014

What I'm Reading

Whoops! I almost forgot about my books post this week.

Hey, I've been busy. So busy that I didn't get a whole lot of reading done at all, so late as it is, this isn't going to be much of a post. ;-)

Electronic Books

No electronic reading to speak of. Normally that would mean I haven't been riding the exercise bike, but in this case that's not true. I did ride, I just didn't read from George. I read a paperback instead. :-)

Tree Books

No progress to report on Hunting the Corrigan's Blood by Holly Lisle. Don't even ask. ;-)

No progress on Water For Elephants, by Sara Gruen either. I suspect those elephants are going to get mighty thirsty before I get back to them.

I had to buy myself a new journal last week - I'm still in shock that I used up the old one so fast - and of course that meant a trip to Coles, which is part of the Chapters/Indigo book chain. Yes, I know there are other places to buy journals, but they're not as pretty as the ones in Coles. :-)

Anyway. I couldn't go to Coles and not even look at the books . . . and sitting on the shelf, all by itself, was a copy of the latest book in the Lynsay Sands Argeneau Vampires series. As you know (if you know me at all) if I was ever to be bitten by a vampire, I would want it to be one of Lynsay Sands vampires. :-)

The book was Vampire Most Wanted, which is number 20 in the series, I believe. And it was every bit as yummy as the rest of the series. This one centered around Basha Argeneau, who went through a trauma as a child that separated her from her family and left her on the run from them for centuries. She's found by the uber hot Marcus Notte, who turns out to be her life mate. But the path to true love is never easy, especially if you're a rogue vampire and your life mate is an enforcer sent to track you down.

Re-Reads Yeah, I'm pretty much coming up empty here. The book migration ground to a halt, so no old books have been tempting me, and I haven't even really had time to so much as glance at the two I had on the go.

Seriously. One day I will be organized so that I have time for all the things I want to get done in a day.

One day . . . ;-)

Aug 20, 2014

On Flicking Your Bic and The Most Dangerous Time of the Year . . .

So . . . it's that time of year again. If you're a parent it's the most wonderful time of the year:

But even if you're not a parent you can still take advantage of all the wonderful bargains of office supplies school supplies going on right now.

If you've been reading this blog for any length of time, you know I have a bit of an office supply addiction:

Just so you know, that's just the tip of the iceberg. That I also have drawers full of paper, small notebooks, pencils, pens, and let's not forget the mecca of office supplies . . . stick notes. :-)

This is the time of year I avoid office supply stores, like Staples, like the plague. As well as dollar stores and certain sections of department stores. Walmart has been particularly dangerous with its ten cent packages of paper and exercise books. The last time I saw a sale like that I bought enough lined paper to see my daughter through high school and university, and I just discovered a couple of unopened packages of that paper in an upstairs closet a couple of days ago.

So while it may be the most wonderful time of the year, it's also the most dangerous time of year for people who have an office supply addiction, like me.

Now, you're probably wondering what that has to do with "flicking your bic." Well, I'll tell you.

One of the commercials I've been seeing a lot lately is for Bic pens. Papermate has been running them too, but the Bic ones stick in my head because of the catchphrase "flick my Bic" which actually has nothing to do with pens. I'd forgotten the phrase actually referred to Bic lighters.

And the really ironic part is, I don't even like Bic pens. A long time ago I bought a bulk supply of them from a discount store, and by the time I got around to using them most of them had dried up. So the bargain wasn't such a bargain after all. But the catch phrase sticks in my head anyway and makes me want to go buy some pens. Just not Bics. :-)

Aug 18, 2014

Mycophagous Monday

mycophagous ~ eating fungus

It's after 1 a.m. as I write this, and I can barely keep my eyes open. It was a lonnggg week.

I don't recall it starting that way, but about Wednesday my time started shrinking and my to-do list kept growing. But the amazing thing is that I got almost everything done - even cutting the lawns, which took me three or four days. Not to do the actual cutting, but to co-ordinate my time with the weather.

It's been pretty cold in our neck of the woods, unseasonably so. And when I'm finding it cold, you know it's cold. We're talking wearing long pants and socks, and switching to flannel sleep pants at night. But that's not the weather that was keeping me from my lawn cutting. That would be the vast amount of rain, or the threat of rain, we got last week.

In case you were wondering, I got the lawns cut Sunday. Which is today as I write this, but yesterday as you read this. It was overcast, and cool enough that I didn't feel like lying down and dying afterwards. And I did the entire yard, front and back, on one tank of gas. Go me!

Saturday (amongst other things) there was an anniversary party for my in-laws. It was their 60th, quite the milestone. They rented one of the local halls and had an open house, followed by a dinner for just the immediate family. There were friends and relatives from all over drifting in and out during the open house, although the pouring rain put a bit of a damper on things towards the end. But we saw people we hadn't seen in years.

In other news . . . I'm happy to report I made some progress on the nook last week. I've brought three or four loads of hardback books down from upstairs using my trusty basket, and the books are not only catalogued, they're on a shelf in the nook. AND I'm starting to think I'm going to have room for all of them, including all my Anne McCaffrey and Mercedes Lackey collections. :-)

So . . . as I was shelving the above mentioned books, I of course had to climb into my nook. The nook that Taz has been sleeping in. And even though I used the side he wasn't, I ended up covered in cat hair. So after I cleaned myself off, I decided to clean out the cat hair on his side of the nook. I ended up with enough hair to build a new cat. And here I though shedding season was over!

In the craft department, I finished the main part of the baby sweater I was working on, I just need to add the trim. Once I decide what colour to make the trim. The yarn is mostly white, with a bit of blue and green and the odd spot of pink. I have both yellow and green to choose from, although I'm leaning towards the yellow - the green doesn't quite match the green in the sweater. And then I have to do the bonnet and booties and my set will be done and I can post a picture.

I'm also happy to report that I'm making good progress on Lucky Dog. There might be hope of having it ready for Christmas after all. :-)

This week is going to be . . . interesting. The hubby has transitioned pretty much away from the walker totally and is using a cane now, and has decided he wants to try working at his office instead of from home. Hmm.

I'm still determined to come up with a workable daily routine. I don't think I realized how much my routine meant to me until I had all this extra stuff messing it up. I'm pretty sure I've got a handle on which of my daily tasks are best done at what times now, and that, I think, makes all the difference. Let's hear it for a workable routine! ;-)

Aug 15, 2014

What I'm Reading

In a perfect world I'd be able to sit outside in a lounge chair sipping lemonade and reading to my heart's content. But the world is far from perfect and circumstances seem determined to keep me from reading as much as I'd like. :-)

Electronic Books

The book I had the hubby pick out that I talked about last week? Lost it. It might have helped if I remembered what it was called, or who wrote it, or if I hadn't decided to update the books on my Kindle . . . Anyway, it got lost in the shuffle.

But I did remember to take George with me to the doctor's office where I got to read for more than an hour. I started reading Thirteen, a collection of crime stories by a group called the Mesdames of Mayhem. I'm enjoying it more than I expected - not only are the stories cleverly done, there's a good deal of humour to them as well.

Tree Books

One of these days I'm going to just sit down and finish Hunting the Corrigan's Blood by Holly Lisle. It's like out of sight out of mind - right now it's out of sight in the piles of books in my office. ;-)

One of the perks of having writing friends is when they give you their books to read before they're published. My friend Deborah Lean passed me a book she'd written, asking for my opinion. It was a departure from her usual crime dramas, this one was more of a contemporary slice of life. I'm not really sure how I'd categorize it, but I thoroughly enjoyed it despite the fact it was a BIG book. ;-)

Needless to say, I never did get back to Water For Elephants, by Sara Gruen. *sigh* Did I mention I don't seem to be able to make as much time for reading as I'd like lately?


Sisters in Fantasy, is another book that I started and then promptly misplaced. I think one of the problems with it is that I like to read anthologies one story at a time and the first couple of stories were rather long. I just don't have the time to commit to long stories right now.

I've been slowly but surely moving the hardback Science Fiction and Fantasy books into my nook. I'm starting to think I just might have room for them all after all. :-)

But I'm rediscovering old favourites and it's getting really, really hard to resist them. Like . . . Michael Moorcock's Elric Saga, or Roger Zelazny's Amber series.

I think I'm ready for that lounge chair any time now. ;-)

Aug 13, 2014

Of Driving and Pet Peeves and Parking . . .

One of the duties that has fallen to me temporarily while the hubby is out of commission is picking up our son-in-law from work every afternoon. He works at Home Depot, and on our way out of the parking lot yesterday we came upon a car that was stopped at the crossroads where to the left you could go into the far edge of the parking lot, to the right you could drive along the edge of the garden centre, and straight ahead was the driveway to the road.

This guy was just sitting there. It wasn't a place where you could park, but he had no signal flashing so there was no indication of what the heck he was doing. Then his wife appeared and got in the car - apparently she'd been checking out the garden sheds. Meanwhile, the car behind me pulled out and went around both of us, almost causing a collision when the first car decided he was moving after all. Again, with no signal. Actually, I don't think either of them used a signal, which is why I called them both dumbasses, causing my son-in-law to comment: "Now I know where your daughter gets it from" which is really not the point I'm trying to make.

The point I'm making is that there are a lot of people out there who don't use their signal lights. I don't know whether they don't know how, or they just can't be bothered. In the above situation he should have had his signal going to let other drivers know he was stopped there temporarily, and then he should have signaled to let people behind him know he was going to be pulling into traffic again. It's not rocket science and not doing so is like . . . road rudeness.

Are they just not teaching the proper use of the turn signal in driving schools these days? Or have people just become so lazy or inattentive when driving that they can't be bothered to take a second to flick that indicator light on? It's bad enough when you're on the highway and you get cars zipping in and out without a signal to indicate they're switching lanes, but my real pet peeve is cars in town who can't be bothered to signal when they're turning. That's right people, you are supposed to use that signal light to give warning that you're going to turn, EVERY TIME you turn. Even when you're in a turning lane, and before you get to the corner in question and especially before you've been sitting there for a minute or two while cars line up behind you wondering why you're sitting there.

And speaking of turning lanes . . . how many drivers know what a centre turning lane is for? Anyone? We've only got a couple of places in town (thank God) where we have a centre turning lane - that extra lane dividing a wide road in the centre. The idea is that it allows you to make a left turn from either direction without blocking the line of traffic. But apparently that's too complicated for a lot of people. I've seen them cross a turning lane, but never actually enter into one. Maybe it's the arrows going both ways that confuse them.

The same goes for an advanced green. Whether it's the flashing green light or the steady green arrow, people just don't seem to grasp the concept of being allowed to make a left hand turn before everyone else starts moving. What's even worse is when they finally figure it out . . . just in time for the arrow to turn amber so they're the only ones who get around that corner.

One of the other duties that's fallen to me is the weekly banking, which necessitates parking downtown. Our bank does not have a parking lot tucked away in the back so I have to park on the street. And yes, my friends, that means I have to parallel park. I can hear the gasps as I type.

What is the big deal with parallel parking? Turn your signal on. Pull up beside the car in front of the parking space. Back up at about a 45 degree angle. Once you're halfway in, straighten the wheels. The spaces on the street beside my bank are large enough that I can do it in one smooth move. Seriously. At most I may have to pull forward a bit once I'm in just so I'm not crowding the guy behind me. Easy peasy people. Yet I know so many people with a fear of parallel parking - it's almost an epidemic. Maybe you all just need more practice. :-D

And for the record, yelling at other drivers (who cannot hear you) is not road rage, it's just a healthy expression of your opinion. Road rage is when you stop the car and get out to yell at them in person - which I have never done. Yet. ;-)

Aug 11, 2014

Miticide Monday

miticide ~ agent which kills mites

Last week was one of those messed up weeks when I found it hard to figure out what day it was. I blame the Civic Holiday. Holiday Mondays always seem to throw me off.

Of all the holidays, this is the one I don't understand. It's not a statutory holiday, but a municipal one, and not everyone celebrates it. I got curious enough to look up why we get the first Monday of August off.

The exact origins of the day are unknown and the reason for celebrating it varies from province to province, but it's generally accepted that somewhere in our past it was decided we needed a long weekend in August. In Nunavut, the Northwest Territories, Ontario, and Manitoba it's called the Civic holiday; Saskatchewan, British Columbia, and New Brunswick name it after their province; in Alberta it's Heritage Day; Nova Scotia and Prince Edward Island know it as Natal Day; and Newfoundland, Labrador, Quebec, and the Yukon Territory are out of luck - they don't celebrate it under any name. Weird, or what?

Thanks to my co-nagger Jamie I got over 2,000 words in on Lucky Dog last week. We have a thing going where we send each other email reminders to get things done and it seems to be working well for both of us. ;-)

The flash murder story I mentioned last week? I did manage to whittle it down to the 250 word limit and managed to get it submitted just in the nick of time. Now I want to go back and expand it into a longer piece. :-D

No progress to report on the nook, although I honestly did try to get some work done on it Sunday. I was literally starting to load books into a basket to start bringing them downstairs and the phone rang - a friend I hadn't talked to in a while and who turned out to be particularly chatty. *sigh* Maybe this week.

I have done the body of the baby sweater I was working on, and should be able to finish it this week, depending on what kind of TV viewing there is. My appointment with my nutritionist (who I'm making this for) isn't until next week, so hopefully I'll have time to make the matching bonnet and booties too. It's turning out to be a little bigger than I expected, so I'd like to try translating this pattern into knitting to see if it works better that way - but that'll be a project for another time.

This week I'd really like to try getting back in a routine. I have to admit I've been floundering a bit without my daily routine - I really miss it.

I'd also like to get back to posting on my writing progress blog (the Current Projects tab at the top), but I've got some editing to get to as well, so we'll just have to see what kind of time I've got. ;-)

Aug 8, 2014

What I'm Reading

Still a little slim pickings on the reading lately, but I'm getting some in, and any reading is good reading. :-)

Electronic Books

I've come to associate my e-reading with my riding the stationary bike. So the fact I didn't get any e-reading in last week makes it look like I didn't get any time in on the bike, but that's not true. I did use the bike last week. Three times. ;-)

What happened was, I had the hubby pick a number between 1 and 150 (the number of pages of listings I have on my Kindle) and then a number between 1 and 10 (the number of titles displayed on each page) and then I think I read the title off the first page of the book at those co-ordinates before the battery died.

It really, really helps when using an e-reader if you check the battery once in awhile. ;-)

So being too lazy to go upstairs to find a tree book, I found a few tucked in between DVDs on the shelves in the rec room and started reading one during my ride. And then the next two times I rode I was so into the tree book I had on the go that I brought it downstairs with me instead of firing up George.

But don't despair! I have a doctor's appointment this week, and everyone knows there's no better place to kill a few hours reading than waiting for the doctor. :-D

Tree Books

I read a couple more pages in Hunting the Corrigan's Blood by Holly Lisle, but it's been slow going. I have it in my purse now so it's handy when I pick the son-in-law up from work in the afternoons. However, he's been getting out of work on time lately, so I haven't been getting a lot of reading time in there.

I finished Shadow Spell, by Nora Roberts, and it's really put me in the mood to read more books like it. Unfortunately, I don't have any more. So I may have to pay my friend a visit and raid her Nora Roberts collection. LOL

Shadow Spell continues the saga that started with the Dark Witch . This time the action centers around Connor O'Dwyer , who's able to go back in time in his dreams to visit his ancestor, the dark witch's son. And though Connor, his sister, and his cousin have hurt the evil Cabhan, Cabhan has been learning new dark magics and is targeting Meara, whom Connor has known all his life and only now come to realize is the woman he's always been searching for.

Once again we have a novel full of action and romance, magic and love. Can you ever really go wrong with a Nora Roberts novel?

I didn't get any reading done out on the deck last week, so I sort of forgot about Water For Elephants, by Sara Gruen. Oops! My bad. I have liked what I've read so far . . . it's a tad different from the movie, as is to be expected. The book jumps back and forth in time a bit - we're seeing the story through the eyes of Jacob, who's in a retirement home and not enjoying it much. His memories are triggered by a circus setting up in the field near his nursing home.

Maybe now that I'm done with the Nora Roberts book (and have to wait until the end of October for the next one!) I'll be able to make more time for the elephants. :-)


So . . . after a good start on Sisters in Fantasy, I promptly set it down on the little shelf under the table beside my easy chair . . . and forgot about it. Seriously, what is wrong with me? Maybe I should try putting in on the table instead of under it. LOL

And there you have it. My reading for the week, such as it is. :-D

So . . . what have you been reading?

Aug 6, 2014

On Nags and Nagging . . .

I have four cats who are terrible nags. Or rather, they're really good at nagging. Especially when it comes to being fed, and especially first thing in the morning. Normally they give me until 8 a.m. before they start, but this morning they were early - it was more like 7:30.

First there was Julius, who's got a whole passive/aggressive thing going on. He'll walk softly up on the bed between my husband and I until he reaches the pillows, and then he starts to purr. The purr gains in volume and if no one responds he might rub his head against one of us - usually me because hubby sleeps like a rock and besides, I'm the one who gets up to feed them. All he wants is a few pats . . . but since you're awake enough to give pats, would you mind coming downstairs and doling out the food as well?

Dante is a little less subtle. He'll jump down between us with a thump and then start in on his patented yowl, demanding I check the clock and have I seen what time it is? Romi's voice is a little quieter, but the most grating of all. He doesn't come up on the bed but stays on the floor beside my side of the bed. And yes, I have been known to toss things from my nightstand at him, especially when he starts in before 8 a.m.

And Taz? He lets his sons do the dirty work and only joins in once I'm up and in the bathroom. Even if by some miracle I beat them up, they're still crowded around the bathroom door when I open it. And if I take too long, one or more of them will try and dig me out. Then they follow me downstairs where it crosses the border from, "Yes, I'm getting up to feed you, thanks for reminding me" to "I'm doing what you want, so shut up and get out from under my feet!"

Nagging is seen as a bad thing. Cats aside, it usually involves one person who wants something done, and one or more people who aren't doing it. I remember my mother nagging me to pick up my toys or clean my room when I was a kid and I don't recall her using her happy voice to do it. It wasn't until I got married and then had a child of my own that a great truth was revealed to me:

Nags are not born, they're created. Usually by the people around us who don't do what they've promised us they're going to do.

Using Wikipedia I discovered that according to the Wall Street Journal, nagging is "the interaction in which one person repeatedly makes a request, the other person repeatedly ignores it and both become increasingly annoyed". I'll buy that.

But then the article goes on to say: Psychotherapists such as Edward S. Dean have reported that individuals who nag are often "weak, insecure, and fearful ... their nagging disguises a basic feeling of weakness . . ."

Really? It's not just that junior promised to take out the garbage, but there it sits. And although it would probably be easier to take it out ourselves, we're trying to teach him about responsibility so we keep reminding him as it grows increasingly fragrant and starts to attract flies. And by the time he does get around to taking it out he's accusing us of nagging him to death, while we're left wondering how to get rid of the trail of maggots he leaves behind.

As with many of the topics I stumble upon - I came up with this one while lying in bed trying to ignore the cats and I realized I'd once again forgotten to write my Wednesday post the night before - I had a firm opinion of the topic in the beginning, but as I did more research on it my stand began to waver.

I knew nagging women were the butt of many a joke, but when had nagging become such an anathema? The naggers are painted as evil incarnate, while the naggees are innocent victims. Really? We're not just women trying to goad our lazy families into pulling their weight?

Then I read this article about Stopping Nagging, which not only had a better understanding about why we nag, also went into why our loved ones are so resistant to our nagging.

What it all boils down to is, it's not so much what we're saying, it's how we're saying it. I remember when I was a teenager and my father would tell me to wash the dishes. Even if I had been about to get up to wash the dishes, the fact that he told me to do so made it the last thing on earth I wanted to do. But what if he'd said something like, "There's a great show on TV we could watch together after you've done the dishes"? He wasn't really asking me to do the dishes, so I probably would have been more open to doing them.

It's like with the cats. Dante and Romi are more in your face about getting me up in the morning and it makes me just want to dig in and stay in bed. But Julius' approach, with his purring and subtle nudging, is more likely to have me sigh and agree that it's almost 8 o'clock so I might as well get up.

Again, it's not in what's being said, it's the way it's being said.

Food for thought for a Wednesday morning.

Aug 4, 2014

Maculomancy Monday

maculomancy ~ divination using spots

How do these Mondays keep creeping up on me? And this one is the Civic Holiday, which means if you're in Canada and don't work in retail, you probably got to sleep in today. :-)

I remember when I was a teenager and worked in retail during the Civic Holiday . . . borrrr-innng! We were the only department store in town - which was half the size it is now - and no one knew we were open. My department was in the back corner of the store - wool/notions/fabric/crafts and myself and the girl from children's wear (next department over) sat on the cutting table and played cards all day.

It's been raining most of the weekend - apparently the weather has no respect for the plans people may have for a long weekend - and today is shaping up to be not only humid, but hot as well. The hot I can handle. The humid? Not so much. I'm really getting tired of everything feeling damp.

But honestly, if we didn't complain about the weather, what would we complain about? ;-)

Last week was another one of those weeks where I was busy, but didn't get anything of great significance done (other than to myself). A little of this, a little of that . . . laundry, vacuuming, yard work . . .

Managed to get a few words done on Lucky Dog, a couple of rows done on the baby set I'm doing for my nutritionist, nothing at all done on the nook. I spent Sunday night paring down a story I was submitting for a flash murder anthology and was so happy when I got it down to 450 words . . . until I realized the limit was 250. LOL

This week will probably be more of the same, although I would like to start getting the hardbacks moved into the nook so I can finally finish up that project. What an exciting life I lead, eh? ;-)

Aug 1, 2014

What I'm Reading

Slim pickings on the reading lately, but I'm starting to get into the habit of reading while I'm having my breakfast, so at least that's something. :-)

Electronic Books

Poor George (my Kindle) must think I've abandoned him. I did no electronic reading last week. I didn't even read any on-line stories.

And if I'm perfectly honest, part of this lack of e-reading is due to me slacking off on the exercise again. I wasn't using the stationary bike during this time either. So I guess that makes me bad on both counts.

Tree Books

I read a little further in Hunting the Corrigan's Blood by Holly Lisle, but to be honest I'm not really in the mood for science fiction. Do you ever get like that? In the mood for a certain kind of book?

God bless friends who buy the books you can't afford AND are willing to lend them to you. The friend who lent me The Dark Witch, by Nora Roberts, just bought the sequel, Shadow Spell and has lent it to me without reading it first. It's good to have friends. ;-)

But before I started reading Shadow Spell, I had the chance to sit out on the deck to read a little last week. I prefer a tree book out on the deck - I have no idea why - so I looked in my to-be-read bookcase and on a whim picked up Water For Elephants, by Sara Gruen. I liked the movie version, so I'm sure I'll enjoy the book as well.


Here's where the whole book cataloguing thing came into play. Instead of picking up the next Sword and Sorceress book, I picked up Sisters in Fantasy, which is pretty much the same idea except the stories in this series are by female authors only. I'm only a couple of stories in so far because these stories are a tad longer, but once again I'm re-discovering old favourites.

All in all, not bad, considering how limited my time's been lately.

So . . . what have you been reading?