Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Let's Get Back To Me!

You knew that was coming.

1. I'm freaking out a bit about my side but I keep telling myself that I'm being a big boob. Yes, a shock.

2. I need to start exercising like crazy.

3. I WON BOOKS AT C2s!! Cause I'm a winner baby.

4. I'm reading my MJD still but work is busy so not so much. And TV is back so I've been watching too much. Bad Cindy.

5. At this moment I watching some show called Aftermath The World After Humans - the narrator is a killjoy. Apparently 5 days after humans just happen to disappear (go with it) most dairy cows have died. Domesticated animals are out of luck. Thing is, the nuclear plants are probably about to blow without us humans around to regulate stuff.

Note to self - if everyone dies of the plague and you survive - go and take care of the nuke plants!! I Am Legend - suddenly makes no sense. Damn. I love those kind of 'survivor' movies.

6. I got on the scale the other day and about fell over. I had gained 5 lbs. I was freaking inside and trying to keep it together. Later in the day I mention to Bob that Cindy Palooza is over. Bob asked why and I told him about the gain.

Bob: Oh, you didn't gain weight. I calibrated the scale to the scale at our office.

Cindy: 'scuse me?

Bob: The scale at work is extremely accurate so I moved our scale to the right number.

Cindy: *considers whether a maiming is necessary* So I haven't gained five pounds.

Bob: Of course not, you look great! (realizing he's caused some serious trouble that's about to land on his head)

Cindy: I want my own scale. One that tells me the old number!

Doesn't matter in the end, I have to make a friggin effort again.

This after the hubby just put in our new 36" gas range. I want to cook but soup and small amounts of nutritional goods are what's about to be on tap.


Monday, September 29, 2008

Well, Shit and An Apology to Kristie

While working on my job tonight I ran through the discussions of the weekend and tried to figure out exactly what was bothering me.

I figured it out.

A private e-mail was referred to in a comment on this blog.

I can't be a hypocrite on this. I believe 100% that e-mails are private and are not to be posted online without the express permission of those involved.

So fuck me. You all know I hate being serious about anything but what I started I have to finish.

I am aware that the person whose e-mail was referred to feels the same as I do as we've had discussions about it before.

I apologize.

I have an e-mail in to the person to make sure I've got my facts right.

If she asks for the comment to removed I will do so immediately. At this time I am leaving it up until I hear from her. Knowing her like I do I think she'll probably let it stand which is why I didn't remove it immediately.

I blogged about my thoughts on posting private e-mails here during a completely un-related event a few years ago.

I will edit this once I hear back.

We all have friends on the internet and two friends have been hurting this past weekend.

I called Kristie this evening to apologize if I had hurt her and it turns out I had.

I'm very sorry.

I apologize here also so the world can see that I'm sorry that I hurt you.

Next post will be a LOL Cat tribute.

I swear.

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Is This What We Have Become?

I'm a small blog and I think a few of those who come here won't have a clue what I'm talking about so I'll do a sum up:

There is a website called All About Romance aka AAR. This website has been in existence for over 10 years now and I have been a visitor since the day they opened their doors. I am also a volunteer pollster for them.

That said, I haven't and will not check my brain at the door.

Anyways, if you have never been there go and take a gander. Basically, 7000 reviews and reader interaction, forums, lists of Favourite Books by Favourite Authors, a once monthly column now weekly column called At The Back Fence and The Annual Reader poll (just to begin).

Fun, fun, fun.

Now over the many years of operating, terms have developed and one of those terms was DIK or Desert Isle Keeper. It is their rating of a book that gets an A- review or higher. There is a whole page dedicated to these titles and you can search through their archives for DIKs.

Two weeks ago now I became aware the Laurie Gold the owner of AAR was upset by a blog that had been started called DIK Desert Island Keepers. To read more about how she feels you can go here and here. (Nuts, Blog-City is down again - last few days it's been cracking so here is the forum post at AAR here)

Now, whether or not Laurie owns DIK I don't know, what I do know, is that I waited, as did Laurie for a response from the ladies who own the blog in question. They were written a letter asking only that they let their readers know where the title of their blog originated.

Were they asked to change the name of their blog? No.

Were they asked to put up a clear banner stating an affiliation to AAR? No.

Did they say ONE WORD in response? No.

Now you guys know me, I rarely if ever get involved in flame wars (I prefer to roast my marsh mellows from the side) or train wrecks (my rubber-necking is done with an ice cold coke) but I am shocked at the lack of response by women, who by the very definition of their own blog, love to read romance books - just like me. Who obviously enjoy the community of which they are a part of - just like me.

The silence from the owners of this site is so friggin' loud it's been blowing my mind for a few days now. I mean really, how hard is it to return an e-mail? They have had TWO WEEKS!!!

I can only hope that somehow the people in charge have a spam folder the poor e-mail fell into. (Look, I'm even giving you a graceful out!)

Edited: Having just looked at the updated messages on the forum I see that author Donna Lea Simpson has posted on her blog in support of AAR and DIKs. With Ms. Simpson's post I remembered the excitement of authors at RWA when they received buttons referring to their status as authors who had received DIK reviews at AAR. Go read her post and tell me that AAR doesn't have a leg to stand on in this debate.

Let's now talk about community just a little more.

When I first saw the twitter by Laurie that started this I thought 'huh, wonder how these ladies will resolve this'.

That was it.

I was looking forward to seeing a bunch of intelligent women coming to a satisfactory conclusion of something that could be debated. If you went to Laurie's blog you found the facts she has. So I patiently waited for the facts from the DIK Ladies.

Still nothing.

I gotta be honest, I waited for the Dear Author ladies to get wind of this because I knew they would look at this logically and even debate the origins of DIK and other acronyms that may become part of the public lexicon.

What I found at Dear Author tonight was atrocious.

Well done ladies.

Ridicule at it's best and all heaped on one person. I stand and applaud. I bow down to your wicked, wicked wit and now realize that every time you have posted a supposedly well thought out post about the rights of authors or readers or reviewers you were doing it with only one thought in mind.

How does this affect US.

Me, me, me.

Nicely done.

So does this make Laurie 'The Man'. Are we supposed to rail against her because she created a site 10 years ago where a community of romance readers could go and talk? From the responses at Dear Author I would say yup, Laurie is the new 'Man'.

I'm assuming from DA's (hmmm, a blog with DA as a title with Dear Author beside it, I like it!) happy dance response that anyone can go and create a blog called Dear Romance Writer where a bunch of women with only C names will not be skewered by the blog community.

In fact, this means I could safely begin all my reviews here with Dear Author?

OMG! This opens a whole new world for me! I can take ideas from anywhere and make them mine. Just tweak them a little bit. Hell, not even a little bit.

Duck Sauce Theatre Presents! What a great name for a blog!

You want to poke fun I get it. We all poke fun, hell we all start putting 'h's everywhere when a new Ward is out. But we love Ward and all her Brothers despite ourselves. We're not only making fun of the work but ourselves.

Anyone see the difference?

I don't know, where I once saw an issue, I now only see personal attacks and it's been painful to watch.

If you've read this and think I don't have a clue, do me a favour and forward me the 'New Rules Book for the Online Romance Community'.

I've obviously missed the update.

Until then:

Edited: The DIK Ladies have posted

And in closing here are my final thoughts for the week:
We here at the DIK blog are not associated with AAR, but by many reports, they coined/developed the phrase Desert Island Keeper/DIK in relation to romance, and we raise a drink (with a little umbrella in it) in appreciation and mutual love of the genre.

I'm a simple woman, I like it.

Thanks for responding everyone.

Friday, September 26, 2008

So Far, So Good

The scan went fine. Scan part was easy thank God.

I got a bunch of warnings from the doc's office. They may make you drink some water, they may fill your bowel with air (I had this done years ago and dignity is so not an option. I should share that story with you but I think you have to hear it told to get the full hilarity of the situation) which was my biggest worry, nothing like tooting your way out of the hospital. Or you may be asked to put a tampon in. (Seriously, I have no clue on that one unless they are looking for a reference point and then DUDE, you need more schooling!!)

Bobby, bless my man, took me in for 7:30am this morning. I didn't really want to be alone because 1) I'm usually asleep by that time and 2) I didn't know if I would be affected by anything they did.

The nurse lady shows up and tells me I need to drink a litre of water or orange juice with dye in it (or something). All I heard was 'tummy fine' or 'acid wash for tummy'. So I picked the water thinking I drink water all the time so no biggie.

She comes back with two large Styrofoam cups and tells me to drink them over the next hour.

I openly scoff, easy breezy people!


Tempid water laced with something that really is tasteless but at the same time not quite. I only drink ice cold water - I actually eat ice (makes my mother nutty). The good news is that I could totally pee if I needed too. The problem was three large gulps in and I wanted to throw up. Bobby being my kind of guy rubbed my back and told me I had plenty of time and I could totally do it.

The nurse came back with a smile. 'How's it going?'

Me: 'I hate you.'

Finally gag all the water down and I have to pee. Unisex bathroom people!! If I could have floated into the room and hovered I would have. Men are gross!!

I get out and they are waiting for me.

Next is a shunt thingie in the arm.

Right here I have to say *this* was not on the list of warnings!!

But I'm usually fine with needles, I just don't look. Needle is in and we're gravy. Only the nurse guy (did I mention HOT!) didn't think the plastic part (there's plastic in there!?) was working right. I never feel the needle pull out so I was surprised when he opened another kit.

Waaaaiiiiiit a minute. What's going on?

I have to put another one in only I'll go in your forearm.

Oh. Hell. No!

I look at him and tell him to try the other arm. I've only ever had needles that go into the elbow alcove so I wasn't looking for a tender part of the arm to get lanced. He gives it a good look and says, nope, in the forearm.

Crap. I did say a few words out loud when the needle went in. He says 'It's that feeling of pressure right?' Uh, NO!! It's the burning sensation as the needle carves it's way into the vein.

But I'm not a wuss and just say 'yep'.

Finally I'm all hooked up and brought into the room. Having read what happens when the contrast dye is pushed into the IV I make a comment about hot flashes (seriously, I hate them). The guy says, 'Hmmm, yeah, most women actually say they feel like they have peed their pants. You haven't though so don't worry'.


I get hooked up to the dye thing and see them fiddle with the stuff.

Arms over the head and I'm alone. Huh. I'm not having any hot flashes and I don't have any peeing feeling.

Lookit me all cool.

Two scans later I hear the radiologist.

'Okay, I'm going to start the dye now'


'Uh, okay'

She tells me to let her know if my arm hurts. Hmmm, no, it's just cold.

'Okay, now the dye is going to enter'

Oh, for Heaven's sake - just put the dye in.

Yep, felt like I wet my pants. No hot flash though - woohoo!

One whole scan and wham I'm done.

Hope they found the angle they needed!

Long story short, I have to wait for the results.


Edited: I'm posting two posts today so continue on to see a couple puppies playing.

The Epic Battle of Sunny and Fumble

Sunny is my BF puppy (8 months) and Fumble is other friends puppy (7 month - and a Labradoodle) Two extremely well behaved dogs when not in each others company.

Taken when I first get there:

Couple hours later:

Maybe a 1/2 later - you'll hear a child yelling out he got it - his tooth fell out. At which point I heard the going rate for a tooth was $5 bucks. My reaction is on tape. Bad Cindy

Thursday, September 25, 2008

I Can't Say I've Been Busy

Oh, well hold on. I have been a bit busier than usual.


Didn't think that would happen.

Work was a bit more than usual and then there were the AAR Mini-Polls that I was working on.

Okay, here's one for you. Does your butt, back, legs, arms, neck cramp up if you sit in your computer chair too long?

Just say yes and make me happy.

I think my arm ache (screaming pain) was from doing laps in the pool on the weekend. Yeah, not bright when you haven't been doing enough physical stuff.

I did get out last night - my BF got herself plastered and I had to tell her to call in sick to work. She argued and such but yeah, you can't go to work drunk.

Then there was the drama of what she reveals when she's not sober. One of her good friends is very Christian (don't ask me, I'm just saying) and I think we were about a minute and a half away from her throwing the BF down. Not that I blame her but hey, sometimes you have to know the person you are friends with and for some reason, I'm not surprised about her thoughts on certain subjects. (infidelity - she's been there, done it, done it again and so on. Some guy is about to come back into her life and she openly says to us that if he comes to her she won't be able to say no. Uh, yeah. Fuck off. Thing is, I'm one of those friends for life people. You have to accept the good and the bad but she was way too drunk to have a rational discussion about what she was telling us. The Christian friend told me BF had been talking to her for weeks about it while this was the first time I had heard it. Stunned that she would load that crap onto her other friend but maybe she's hoping she'll save her. *shrug* )

So she can play fast and loose with one set of rules but then try and open her to ideas that aren't familiar and she gets all judgy. Hey, have an opinion but don't make fun of people. See another of her friends was there and she does Reiki (I don't know) and BF starts talking about how it's voodoo and garbage and making woo-woo noises and I just wanted to give her a good slap. You don't believe, then fine, just don't be an ass. I'll call her on it another time cause this isn't the right time - she's all stressed an stuff but I felt bad for the other friend who was openly mocked. I have never played like that. Again, trying to have a discussion with drunk BF not conducive so I have to leave it until another time.

This is probably way too much information but obviously I needed to vent. That night was like the Twilight Zone.

I'm going for a CT scan of my abdomen this morning at 8am. I have that pain in the side and Bob's been ruled out so they decided to take a look. I'm hoping it's just a huge thing of gas. Yep, in my imagination they'll just take a huge ass needle, shove it in my side and wham, air leakage.

I'm positive that way.

I'm more worried about the fact that it's closing in on my bed time and I'm sleepy. Bob's taking me down so I don't have anything like that to worry about. I just have to try and not be snappy.

Remind me to tell you about the small fight Bob and I had this afternoon. The good news is that usually just end up making the other person laugh and then we're both laughing. It was that kind of an argument.

Okay, off to try and stay awake.


Thursday, September 18, 2008

More Comfort

I pulled out a Prime Rib from the freezer this morning and when I got up (you caught that did you) shoved it in the oven and went to see the BF.

BF was baby sitting a 4 month old who finds me entertaining and she is just cute as a button. Then there is her puppy that thinks I'm all that too.

An hour later Bob called and was home early. Cool.

That said, I don't like rare meat so I cooked that prime rib till it was black all over. It was surprisingly easy - in the oven, out the door and when Bob got home we went out and ordered the oven from IKEA. Came home, peeled up some potatoes and then made up the gravy. Yeah, we ate late - 8:30pm but I think once I get an oven on the mainfloor again I'll be able to make some changes. (I'm not a basement dweller and the only oven is in the basement - I braved the lower level so I could have me some meat, potatoes and gravy)

Right now the cats are on the ottoman near my feet. Emma hasn't tried to sit with us for years. Emma never liked the dogs, poor thing, but it sure didn't take her long to stake her claim again!

As arrogant as cats are, they still know when we need them.

I took a couple pics but I'm on the wrong computer - will share tomorrow.

And off point, anyone else end up tasting the chemicals they clean with? Right now all I can taste is Murphy's Oil soap. I'd go and pour another coke but that would be three for the day and I'm not sure my tummy could take it. Still, the water I'm drinking isn't cutting it. Neither is the Kit Kat I ate a 1/2 hour ago.


Comfort Shopping

Thanks everyone for your thoughts and prayers and your understanding.

I've been reflecting on what Rocky and Cody have taught me.

Patience is tops for sure - talk about uptight when I was younger, now you could run through my house with a flame thrower and I wouldn't blink. Okay, I might make a crack about who's going to clean that burnt stuff up but I'm good.

Don't take life too seriously cause shit happens (literally around here).

Getting mad is the easy way, taking a step back and finding compassion takes work and it pays in spades.

I'm stronger than I thought - cleaning an open oozing wound was something I would have said I could never do. By helping Cody I was able to 'woman up' when Mama Smith was sick and help in ways I wouldn't have been able to do a year ago.

Just a few things hitting me tonight.


Obviously a new chapter is about to unfold around here. This Saturday is supposed to be nice up here so we've invited the Godkids and their friends over to swim. Bob was so cute when he asked if I thought they might bring their puppy. Uh, yeah. My best friend doesn't leave her house without her puppy - that would be Sunny. Fingers crossed that the weather will hold and we'll have a last summer hurrah in the back yard.

Bob took me to the bookstore tonight. Surprisingly at a loss as to what to pick up.

I hit the Harlequins first because they are the old time comfort read and turns out Diana Palmer had a title out also. Must have known I'd need it. Also bought a Catherine Mann title.

Then I decided to head to the erotica section.

I know, I don't really climb out of my box often but I figured there would be romantica misplaced in there. And I'm needing something with an edge. Sharp and dangerous but hey, I read that Anne Stuart already. Crap.

So I found McCarty - I'm wondering if maybe I own it now that I'm looking at the cover again. Will have to double check.

And for my way out there choice, Megan Hart's Tempted - I think that one might be erotica.

I've bought other books over the past few months but I have a horrible memory and can't remember if I blogged about them already.

I'll admit right now that I bought the latest Betsy book from MaryJanice Davidson.

Shut up.

On a completely different note - I'm starving.

Yeah, you're right, I have no clue what starving really feels like but today is one of those days where I could eat every second of the day.

I see some comfort food being cooked in my future.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Our Cody Bear

I'm struggling to write anything and I think I'm in shock.

Cody was called to the puppy park in the sky tonight.

After 2 years of hearing he could go at any time it was much more upsetting than I thought it was going to be.

Cody had a grand life of 14 years and 8 months. The last two years weren't perfect but he was happy and sometimes that's all a puppy wants.

Cody had a jealous streak a mile long and if attention was being paid to anything his size or smaller he had to get in the middle and make sure you knew he was there. When Cody could hear he would nudge in between Bob and I if he heard us kissing (and yes sometimes we made smooching noises just to see him try and separate us). When Rocky was still with us you couldn't pet him or talk to him without Cody going out of his flippin' mind and barking the house down. Heck, he was stone cold deaf for about a year but he somehow always knew if Amber was up on our laps. He would wake up from a snooze, lift his head to see what was going on and drag himself up if either kitty was in the area.

Cody was also vain. Attention hog that he was he had to hear how handsome he was. I didn't even think about it until we met our last vet. She couldn't believe how Cody needed to hear how handsome he was or that he was the center of the universe. (Maybe it's our fault as Emma also needs this kind of re-assurance from time to time)

In the end he was just a great companion. Bob and I talked about how we were going to cope without our sidekick. Since we sleep at opposite ends of the clock there are many times when Cody would be a 'jobsite' puppy for Bob or a shadow to me. Having had two dogs for most of our marriage I didn't realize how wonderful it would be to have only one dog who looked to you for fun.

Rocky and Cody together ran me ragged and I won't have more than one dog at a time again. Whatever Rocky did Cody had to follow suit and they fed off each other's energy. When Rocky passed Bob and I turned our attention to Cody thinking he would be horribly upset and adrift. What we didn't expect was for him to blossom and bask in the glory of being the only dog in the house. We used to think that Cody would fall apart without Rocky as he followed him every where but maybe Cody was really meant to be a one dog show.

Now we have no one to look to so our grief is our only companion.

It's quiet here for the first time in years. Cody had breathing problems most of his life and in the past two years panting, snoring, coughing, hacking, what have you were the normal noises of everyday life. Now it's eerily silent. And sad.

But I'm a believer and it helps to know Cody is now pain free, tumour free, running around and chasing Rocky giving him hell for hiding from him for so long.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

I Got Me A Man

Bob really does rock my socks.

He's been working on our kitchen for about a month and it's coming along quite beautifully. We got through the 'non-expensive' part and I think we need to hold for a bit before we start buying some seriously expensive pieces.

I know we're buying a 36" dual fuel (means gas burners with an electric oven) from IKEA - if you are out looking, dual fuel stainless steel 36" ovens are 3400 bucks and up. We actually tripped over $8000 dollar ones. Unless it does the grocery shopping, prep work and THEN cooks a turkey, I'm not parting with that kind of cash. The IKEA one is 2000 dollars and looks and has the same door style and everything as the very expensive ones. It has a small IKEA thing on the door but Dude, I'm not one of those people who has to have VIKING on her appliances. (The right hand picture is a Dacor and although the knobs look different the door style is the same (I went and saw one first hand) - this oven in 7 grand. I joked with Bob we could probably buy the 'name' thingie as a part and glue it to the Ikea door. Then I was killing myself laughing imagining it sliding off the first time we used it because of the heat)

So, hey, I'll take my 'cheap' stove cause I'm cheap. No shame in that!

More expensive pieces?

The doors for the kitchen - 5 grand.
Hardwood floor - 1 grand
Tile back splash - a grand
Dishwasher - ugh
Fridge - 2 grand
Freezer - 800

There was something else but I can't remember. Here's hoping I can keep Bob from breaking the bank!

We're going to have a wood working shop do a quote for the doors to see if we can do any better.

So pictures are about to commence. From beginning to now.

Okay, we think the previous owners did change the kitchen - they put that huge bay window in which really is nice cause it looks into the yard. They had 5 kids so I could see the need for an eat-in kitchen but OMG, how she prepped anything in here blows my mind.

I literally used the counter top beside the stove top (you'll see a bag behind the chair closest to the peninsula) for everything and prepping on a 16" wide space of counter is just hard. I never used the counter in the back there.

Here's a better view. See the clutter on the back counter top? Pretty much always like that because it's the only counter top on the kitchen.

The door led into a laundry room but I moved that upstairs and it will now be a walk in pantry with an area with a huge sink for doing pots and pans.

On the left wall here you can see there is a wall of cupboards with a wall oven and a place for the microwave. Beside that is a desk. I don't need desk in the kitchen! But there it was. Ugh. More wasted space for me.

Now Comes the Fun Part!!

This is now the new pantry wall. It's all pantry baby!!

You're right, I have a pantry through that door but I wanted these to look like a huge piece of furniture. Now, through my ideas and Bob's interpretation this is what I have.

I was going to do glass doors on the uppers on this side of the fridge but I'm not sure now because the other side of the kitchen is becoming *quite* the focal point!

I'm with-holding judgment until all the doors are on. Little worried this will turn out to be too heavy.

You also just see the tip of the place where the island will go.

Here you can see how Bob took that peninsula out and now we have a wall on the right hand side of the kitchen. There will be no upper cupboards put on that wall.

The old uppers are still in place as is the dishwasher.

Also, that isn't the entire length of the island right now.

Here we are tonight. Bob put up the fancy hood after putting up all new drywall and putting those uppers up on that one wall.

The plan is that I will have a back splash tile that will take up the one wall with the stove and hood.

Also, you can't see the island here but it's longer now. Our kitchen isn't monstrous so having an island can feel claustrophobic if it's all doors. So I had Bob put in 4 inch cabinets (he had to cut down cabinets to create them) and I'll put glass doors on the one side. I could only have small cabinets on the one side because I have a pot and pan drawer on the other and soon, a dishwasher.

Obviously I took this picture at night as the lighting is not looking all that great. I have a problem if the sun is shining also! I can't win.

Things to be done?

Hardwood floors will go through the kitchen. Doors obviously but we haven't decided completely. These are IKEA boxes (Bob has put in many kitchens and he is floored by the quality of Ikea's boxes) so you would think doors by Ikea but I'm not completely sold.

At this time the cupboards will be white because I plan on having a dark-ish wood floor. I never liked white kitchens but lately I like the clean lines of them. I think you can make them look classic if you don't go with trends.

In our last house we did use Ikea doors because they had a door that looked like cherry and they were perfect. A kitchen for 2500 bucks? Sweet! They stopped carrying the door and when we asked why they told us the manufacturer couldn't make the doors for the same cost anymore and Ikea has a limit.

We'll see what kind of quote we'll get for maple doors stained cherry and then sprayed white.

This kitchen is now HUGE for us and I have so many places to prep things!

I may just have to cook in it.

Friday, September 12, 2008

It's Okay

I'm not dead (a la Rosie), just trying to get through weird brain time.

Sucks to have to change meds (ween off and then back on). Nothing like getting part way through and having all your self-doubts come screaming back up at ya. Wednesday was a bad, bad, self-hatred day. Finally took an anxiety pill (take them when having a panic attack or when you feel one coming on) to see if I could get the negative thoughts in the head to just back the hell up off me.

Bob was a prince considering I called him at work all weepy and full of self loathing. I asked him if he thought *this* was the real me (I know it isn't but logic gets fuzzy when you can't think straight) and that I was a miserable, sad, pathetic excuse of a human. Bobby surely loves me cause he didn't hang up ;) He talked me down which was probably hard in a meeting with a bunch of guys but I'm not shy about my life so much so I don't care and Bob knows I'm open about my situation with people. So even if he had to get off the phone and say 'the wife is crawling the edge' I know he'd say it with compassion.

I slept for 15 hours after I hung up. I have been sleeping 12 - 14 hours when I finally get tired enough to lay down. I'm not taking anything for sleep (which I normally do) so I'm surprised at how hard it is to stay up right now.

You know how when you finally make up your mind about something and you know it's right only to have everything seem to fall into place the way things are?


That was how this past month turned out. I didn't have nearly as much anxiety as I figured I'd have and the long weekend was positively blissful for me. How do you change meds when suddenly everything looks good again.

So I'm scared and hopeful that I've made the right choice because I *hate* when the negative feelings take over.

FYI, when changing meds (for anxiety or depression) you have to ween yourself off and then ween yourself back onto the new med. That leaves about 4 weeks of your brain and body getting used to the side effects - not to mention heading back into anxiety full throttle. I didn't want to deal with it in the summer so I stayed on the dose I was on all of August when my doc really wanted me to take 6 weeks to ween off.

Because she was on holidays!

Hell, no!

So I'm weening off much faster than she would think (I did it the same the last time but she doesn't remember) cause the headaches and vivid dreams I can take. Prolonging self-doubt, negativity, anxiety and self loathing not on my to do list.

I'm also struggling to stay focused on any one thing - I'm like a bird surrounded by shiny things only my wings are broken. It was all I could do to feed myself today.

I know, what a goob.

I'm getting out of the house for a bit to stave off any bad thoughts creeping in. Best friend and God kids should keep me on an even keel. It's the nice part about daywalking. Other people are up and I can go visit!

I also think chocolate will by on my list of things to 'do'.

Monday, September 08, 2008

Does She Really Need An Introduction?

I read much of today and finished Fire and Ice by Anne Stuart!

At first I was thinking something was off (as in although it was a keeper, it wasn't going to be one of my favourites) but then WHAM, she sucker punched me!!

I friggin' love this book!!!

So yeah, get ready for it -


Cindy Blurb: So, this is a final in a series about assassins for 'good' and by that I don't mean these people are even remotely healthy in the morals department but hey, they aren't stone cold killers just for kicks. They have a purpose when they kill - wait, uh, okay, I should mention these are pretty dark books with those anti-heroes / heroines (just in case you are new to Stuart - LinnieGayl I'm talking to you!) that just make me happy.

Jilly is the sister of Summer (a heroine from another book) who is 20 and even though she is young and yes, she even acts young, she's I guess a genius but you know, in books cause not so much in social ways. She met Reno (the cousin of Taka, Summer's man) two years ago and started crushing something fierce. Reno, poor bugger, fell also but didn't realize it. Summer and Taka see it all and keep these two apart.

Reno, meanwhile, is 28 and a disgrace to his well respected family. Hair down to his waist, dyed bright red, rides Harleys and doesn't take anything too seriously. At least, that's what we are led to believe and yeah, I totally bought it.

What happens?

Jilly makes a mistake and runs to her sister who just happens to be in extreme hiding with her hubby Taka. Jilly, not realizing she shouldn't be in Japan ever, steps into the middle of a turf war and Reno is sent in to save her.

And then there was love.

Stuart style baby!!

Let's see, what can I tell you about this one?

I went into Reno and Jilly's story not truly convinced I was going to buy these two falling in love. I guess their ages threw me off and then Reno hadn't really acted all that mature in the previous books. He's a biker dude (okay, he was called something else in the book but whatever) who worked with extremely skilled, deadly guys and they all seemed to make him look like, uh, well, a pansy.

I'm just saying.

Didn't feel like hero material to me.


My love for Ms. Stuart now knows no bounds. I'm telling ya, she made Death sexy in a novella umpteen years ago, had me fall in love with a dead gangster in a Valentine's Day anthology - let's not even talk about Simon ( *MY* Simon) the conman wizard in a historical of all things!!

How could I have thought that she wasn't going to pull this one out of the fire?

The beginning was choppy for me but it was because of all these preconceived notions I had about Reno and well, Jilly is young. Like, young. She was practically jail bait when she first met Reno and Ms. Stuart usually writes characters that are well seasoned with age.

But OMG it just gets fabulous as you continue reading.

What did I love? I loved that Reno and Jilly *were* young cause even though Reno had that edge (you discover it later) these two made mistakes because hey, they haven't been chased by killers everyday of their life like Takashi or Bastien . So of course the baddies are going to get the drop on them and more than once!

In the end I really felt like these two were on an equal footing and that is not something you come across a lot in Stuart's work. The hero is usually so much more dangerous and yes, Reno is dangerous but he isn't quite as broken or cast in iron like a man much older and jaded by his work. So Jilly is able to break through many more times than any of the previous heroines with their own heroes in this series. Jilly is all youth and yet, she has power over Reno even though she isn't quite aware of it.

Then there was that joyful neediness of the young (Jilly's side) mixed with a Fuck You attitude. At times, Jilly would get all pissy and say things that A) get her in dangerous trouble and B) scare the piss out of Reno. The older heroines in previous books don't get as sassy with their heroes because with age comes wisdom - or, uh, fear - so they tend to keep their mouths shut at times you wish they would say something, anything to get the hero to react.

Now for me the book was perfect although I know there is a scene late in the story that would have most readers going 'Oh c'mon!!' but I don't care, I loved it and hey, other authors write scenes like it and don't even acknowledge that someone could have got a bullet in the ass.

I'm just saying.

I could go on - Hey, I heard that! - but I'm going to try and stop now.

It's an A for me for sure.

Now trying to be objective for other readers I would say this one should rate fairly high up there. I'll say a B to B+ for most readers because there isn't as much darkness or angst in this one.

I finished this one this afternoon and yelled down to Bob.

Me: I just finished my book *small sob*

Bob: Uh, oh. You have any other Stuarts?

Me: Are you kidding me!? (okay I do but I'm so not cracking that safe right now! I'm saving them for a time when she might think about retiring. *pleaseNOpleaseNOpleaseNO*)

Bob: Are you going to be blue?

Me: *glare*

Bob: Thought so.

My man doth know me well.

The good news though is that although I had that little pang in my heart for a few hours I'm really excited about reading the next book I can get my mitts on!

Kiss it Slumpville!!

Edited: HELP!! There is a short story on Stuart's website but for some reason I can't download it - it keeps sending me to buy the book. NOOOOOO!! I want the short story!!!

Saturday, September 06, 2008


Forgot to put up the answers!

1. Book Binge Ladies - Rowena, Isobel, Holly and Casee - pssst, there is this Blogger Ballot that they are listed on. Not saying who you should vote for but there are a bunch of blogs listed on the ballot that look super cool. I got some new stalking grounds ;) Go here if you wanna vote.

2. Sookie is Jenster's puppy - named after Sookie Stackhouse - at least I think that is the case but watch, it'll turn out it's someone's Grammy and I'll go to that special place in hell. On a side note, if Jenster wasn't so head over heels with her Sookie (okay and she had no kids) I would totally puppy-nap that cutie!

3. She-ra and Max are Ames' puppies (hmmm, I'm seeing a theme). I wouldn't puppy-nap these guys because Cindy week would never exist. These pups are royalty!

4. Kristie is Krisite and Katiebabs is Blossom (Okay, you guys totally told me that because I was just thinking Powder Puff) but now she also claims to be Batman ;) Psssst - same place you went for number one, also has these ladies up for an award.

8. Nalini Singh's Hostage to Pleasure!

9. Anne Stuart

And to share the wealth:

1. Library Thing edges out Shelfari by a hair (I have Shelfari and love it because I see the covers and it seems covers trigger my memory better than titles so I discovered lots of books I've read over the years!)

2. We're a social bunch - what a surprise! So forums, Facebook or Myspace, book shopping are some of our other past times on the web.

3. Ohhh, longest auto-buy authors - Linda Howard, Julia Quinn, Johanna Lindsey, Kathleen O'Reilly (haven't read her), Lisa Kleypas, Lynn Kurland, Judith McNaught and Katherine Stone (another one I haven't read before)

4. Some of the best books of 2008 - trust me, this will be adjusting my TBR pile accordingly although I really want to read Jayne Castle's last two books and I don't think she made it on the list ;)

Twisted Creek by Jodi Thomas (2)
Scream for Me by Karen Rose (Dang I really need to read this author!)
The Lost Duke of Wyndham by Julia Quinn (2)
The Spymaster's Lady by Joanna Bourne (2)
Mine to Possess by Nalini Singh
Blue-Eyed Devil by Lisa Kleypas (3)
Into the Fire Suz Brockmann (oooohhhh, another author I can't wait to get back into!) (2)
Acheron Sherrilyn Kenyon

Hostage to Pleasure Nalini Singh

Fire and Ice Anne Stuart
Sweet Desserts by Barbara Bretton
Private Arrangements by Sherry Thomas
The Last Time I Was Me by Cathy Lamb

Next year we'll just do comment entries! Promise!

The Winners!!

Congrats to the Winners!


Let me know which bookseller you want a Gift Certificate from. I wonder if I need e-mails also? Off to figure out the logistics.

Yep, e-mail you check so you'll know it's there! Let me know if it's different from the e-mail you used to play.

Thanks for playing and I should probably post people's favourite 2008 reads and their longest auto-buy authors but I can save that for tomorrow.

Today is truly a lazy day.

Friday, September 05, 2008

Tonight at Midnight!!!

C'mon peeps - you have till tonight at midnight to enter the little tiny easy contest I have up where you could win a $25.00 gift certificate to an online bookseller of your choice!

It's Cindy week here in these parts but I'll have to say it's really been Bobby week. The weekend was really mine even though I had to cook and such but I loved it. This week has been more about Bob working on the kitchen while I try not to unleash C-Rex on unsuspecting individuals.

PMS and all that.

Poor Bob felt C-Rex's breath this morning after dawdling too long before getting me to a breakfast joint. Seriously. We were going out the door when we noticed Cody's sad eyes -or the 'gimme a biscuit or I'll die a horrible death while you are gone' look - Bob turned on his heel to go get one. I continued on to the car (without a book because why would I need one) opened the car, sat in the passenger seat and waited for Bob to come out of the house. And I waited. Waited. Considered honking the horn and then thought better of it since it was 7am. Waited. Steam started to rise from hair. Open door to get a breeze. Do the mathematical long conversion of pi in my head. And finally....

C-Rex: What the ^&%*$ (now remember it's morning and C-Rex manages not to roar) have you been doing?

Bob: Amber (blind cat) finally came down for breakfast and I had to pick her up to get to her food dish.

Side note: Thinking on it, it would have taken three seconds to do this, so I think there was some unruffling of feathers (namely Emma's who had already eaten and was waiting for Amber's dish to make an arrival so she could head butt Amber out and eat it herself). And quite frankly I'm thinking he must have put another cabinet in while I was in the car. No, really. I'm not exaggerating. Course C-Rex time is different from normal time.

C-Rex: I'm sorry, is it Amber week!? (Bob's in the car by this time) NO!! It's Cindy week and I'm about to gnaw off my arm I'm so friggin' hungry!! But no, we have to make sure Amber gets breakfast first - Cindy week dammit!!

Bob: *laughing* Okay, so C-Rex is up. I wonder where we can go so I can unleash her on someone?

C-Rex: Ohhhh, me likey.

Bob: Hmmm, I'm not sure how C-Rex would be with jail time.

Cindy: *C-Rex retreats* Yeah, not so much on the jail time.

*looks around to see if a person could actually pace in a car - answer? No.*

Cindy: Could you drive any slower!? *covers mouth - apparently C-Rex is still clawing*

Later - after breakfast and on our runabout (which is tough because I'm awake when I shouldn't be and I know my sleep monkey is riding my back so we have limited time) - C-Rex snaps to -

A car in front of us got shot at (with C-Rex guns *pow, pow, pow,pow, kapow, pow, pow - okay you get the point*), followed by my imitation bazooka (beeeeerrrrrrzzzzzz - *small voice of fear* Mother! *dramatic wait* KABOOM!!! *hands imitate the blast radius*) and when the damn car went into our lane after Bob finally attempted to pass him, C-Rex stroked out and fell into the back seat.

I thought Bob was going to crash the car from laughing.

Good news.

We had to go back to the house before the 'runabout' and I knew Bob was going to IKEA for returns and orders for the kitchen. That's about an hour of hell for someone like me. What did I do? I got out the latest Anne Stuart Fire and Ice and brought it with us.

Sometimes emergencies are just keeping C-Rex from storming through a store with an attitude.

And I'm reading.

And it's Annie.

Cindy week gets back on track.

Thursday, September 04, 2008

Birthday Week Contest is On NOW!!

Sticky Posted - scroll down for new posts but don't forget that Friday is the deadline!

All right, Birthday week is all about the love and as I said earlier it's time to share!

We have THREE $25.00 gift certificates available for your favourite online bookseller.

Open to all cause I gots me some friends from all over the planet.

This will be easy because my brain cells are not up to their normal intelligent self.

Hey! I heard that!

Okay. You're right but still, free stuff peeps.

Uh, where were we? Right!

You will have until Friday Sept uh...crap *goes to find an online calendar* the fifth to send in your answers.

Friday September 5th midnight my time (central?), got it.

Many of these answers you can find on links along the sidebar just in case you are new (Welcome!) so let's dive in and I can clear up things if there are questions. If you've been here before having a few addendum will not surprise you.

1. Who are the Book Binge Ladies? Looking for names of the Ladies.

2. What favourite character did Jenster name her cutie pup after?

3. Who do Max and She-ra belong to?

4. Who are Kristie(J) and Katiebabs alter-egos from Ramblings on Romance? (okay, I'm not sure *I* know Katiebabs' alter-ego name!)

5. Shelfari or Librarything? That's right, I'm looking to stalk ya.

6. What is your favourite read of 2008? Please be a romance so I can buy and read too.

7. Besides blog hopping, what is your favourite past-time on the internet?

8. Who's ARC did I just recently win? Okay, someone revive Kat O for me - you should have it by this week, right?

9. Alright, I'll put this one on here. If you're new just ask around. Who's my ALL TIME favourite author? (you know I've been reading her since 1994 and she's been on my auto buy list now for 14 years!! Is that a record?)

10. On that note, who is your longest standing auto buy author?

Easy peasy eh?

E-mail answers to dogzzz2005@gmail.com

Obviously some answers are about you and some are about everyone else.


Have Fun!!

Tuesday, September 02, 2008


Wow, this weekend was fantastic!

It's rare for me to enjoy so many people coming and playing but I finally found my cooking mojo which meant no stress!

Saturday we had my best friend's family - God Kids and friends! and other adults - burgers, boiled farmer market potatoes with some pepper and butter (OMG YUM), caesar salad and ice creams. Pool time up the wazoo, Bobby set up the slip and slide for pool terrified God son, camp fire in fire pit, marshmellows, chipits, graham crackers, night swim with pool light and a puppy that couldn't stay out of the pool!

After 7 hours I was busted but stayed out of the bed so that I could sleep before my family came the following day.

They showed up at 3pm. Now my Dad is on his way back to Malaysia as we speak and they don't eat beef there. So I made up home made burgers (his fav), more farmer market potatoes, the best farm fresh corn on the cob and of course, caesar salad. Drumsticks (ice cream cones). Pool time up the wazoo again, Bob cleaned up all the dishes, and then lots of family time. Call came in at 10pm from Godson, he had such a great day the day before, could we do it all again tomorrow?

HELL YEAH!! Only no cooking!!!

Got up today to everyone in the pool including the youngest Godson who was terrified of our pool proudly clinging to the shallow end wall. Couldn't get him out of the pool! He finally figured out he could stand in the shallow end. Yay!! He even let me swim him to the deep end piggy back style. Yeah, I was the piggy. Shut up. Puppy once again a fish and time in the pool with my hubby (he didn't swim at the same times as I did the previous two days because of hosting duties - but we didn't have any so I asked him to swim with me. I'm sure we made 'em nauseous with our water snuggles).

Now I'm listening to my Birthday iPod after spending the past few hours figuring stuff out including music I wanted to download. Talk about bliss!

I've got lots of pictures I'd like to share but I'm on the wrong computer BUT, I think I could get one of the videos I took of Sunny playing in our pool. (Cody was sleeping when he was over and if you let him out at the same time as Sunny, Sunny tries to play with him but Cody doesn't understand anymore. Poor guy. But he had lots of love and attention when my family was over. And yes, he ate a whole hamburger cause I'm a huge push over.)

Here's a little video of Bobby filling up Josh's slip and slide.

And this one is a little grainy because I messed up a button on my camera - don't really know how to take videos on the camera. Sunny did this all day long. And yes, that really is my voice.