Tag Archives: books

Long Weekend

I feel like I’ve been running around like a chicken with my head cut off lately, and I’m sure I’m not the only one feeling like this either. Spring always makes me a little crazy around my house, ‘spring cleaning’ everything (which drives Curtis nuts, especially when I try and do it all at once instead of room by room) as well as trying to get assignments and requirements done so I can graduate in precisely 45 days and 1 hour.

While it has been crazy for me lately, we just had the loveliest long weekend that was wonderfully rejuvenating because I decided to do nothing. I didn’t do laundry. I loaded the dishwasher one time. I avoided homework on Sunday. It was glorious!

Naturally, I spent my downtime reading for pleasure and watching the Harry Potter marathon that was on all weekend (I’m an admitted Harry Potter nerd, it’s why I have a Pinterest account). Again, glorious!

Anways, that was my weekend. I want to pass on a little phrase that caught my eye last week:

“Everyone you meet is fighting a battle you know nothing about. Be kind. Always.”

This really struck home with me because kindness is something I struggle with while working in customer service. Oftentimes I am on the receiving end of rude behavior from others, and I often find myself holding a grudge against that person and then passing along the rudeness unintentionally to someone else. I am not trying to excuse rude behavior by saying there is always a reason for it, but on the chance that the person in question is having a terrible day, I think that returning unkindness with kindness may change that person’s day for the better…and in the process it might just change the way I walk away from the situation. That whole, ‘Do unto others’ thing- 🙂 It really changed my attitude, which can get pretty crummy at work sometimes.

Anyways, have a wonderful week-

Read a book.

Relax a bit.

And be kind, even when you don’t want to be, and see what it does.






1 Comment

Filed under God, Uncategorized, Vacation

Book Review: The Giver

I needed a quick read this past weekend, something to sit down with and just relax and not get sucked into. So I re-read The Giver, by Lois Lowry. If you never had to read it in high school, I highly suggest it! It’s another of my favorites.



The Giver Photo

It’s a story about a community where there is no color, no sense of love or family, and there are no memories of a world where there they had any of those things. By choosing ‘sameness’, this community believes they can avoid strife completely- family ‘units’ are selected by a committee, live in a dwelling together, and separate when the children grow and are selected for their own family units. Career paths are chosen for each person by another committee who judge each person’s aptitude. All aspects of life are viewed on a basis of usefulness and efficiency rather than emotions and personal choices. The story follows a boy named Jonas who, when it is his turn to be chosen for a career path, is selected to be the community’s next Receiver of Memory- a rare selection. The Receiver of Memory holds all past memories of the world- love and hate, war and famine, colors and music, none of which is known by anyone but the Receiver. He is a part of the community only to hold these memories in order to aid the committees with his wisdom of past times when they come across a problem they do not know how to solve. This story deals with Jonas discovering that his utopian world is actually dystopian- and coming to realize that he will have to choose his path on his own for the first time in his life. 

It’s quite a short book, and perfect for a little bit of light reading with some really amazing insights to living an imperfect world.



P.S. Goes really well with a good cup of coffee and some of M’s Almond Butter Chocolate Chip Cookies…..


Filed under Books, Coffee, Color, Cookies/Bars, Family, Favorite Things


I don’t have a shoe fetish. My closet is quite small. I enjoy cooking, but I don’t venture into the unknown with expensive ingredients. But I have just come to terms with the fact that books are my guilty pleasure. It’s almost ridiculous, the amount of access I have to books in my house. Or let’s be honest now, on my phone, in my purse, car, or at work. I always have a book on my person in some way, shape or form. I. Love. Reading.

Our Grandpa used to record himself reading Hank the Cowdog  books (incidentally, I just discovered Hank the Cowdog has a WEBSITE?! Awesome.) when we were younger because we lived so far away. He’d send us stacks of tapes  and we’d fall asleep listening to them every single night. So that’s where my Audible account really comes into good use. Even now, I still fall asleep listening to books 🙂 So that’s the audio version of my book addiction.

M has been after me to get a Kindle, but until recently, I have stuck to my guns, maintaining that I love the feel of a real book in my hands. The smell (I’m weird, I know. Sorry.), the act of sitting in a comfy chair with a really good page turner (that I physically have to turn the pages of) just has that tingle running up my spine already. But I will concede now that there is something nice about having a compact way to carry a book around! I do not have a Kindle, but I recently joined the smartphone world and realized- there’s an app for that! 😉 So I caved. And it’s awesome. (Currently, I’m reading The Orchid House by Lucinda Riley. I’m loving it! Stand by for a review.) So that’s the virtual version of my book addiction.

This most recent story starts Wednesday. So I didn’t check my email before going to class. As a long-time college student, I should know better. However, I didn’t check it, so when I got to class….there was no class. And three hours to burn before my next class. A few friends have been telling me about this marvelous second hand bookstore, so I decided to give it a try. Here comes the physical book addiction part of my addiction. It is very nearly PHYSICALLY IMPOSSIBLE for me to enter a bookstore and not purchase something. Especially if the store in question is very cheap, huge, and organized, and extraordinarily well-stocked with books that are in great condition. And accepts credit cards (which a lot of smaller second hand bookstores do not).

The Book Barn (Clovis, CA) (They also have a website)

Downstairs, looking up

Upstairs, looking down











I texted this pic to M right away and her response was hilarious- ‘Are you in heaven?’ Haha…but seriously.

I ended up looking in the Children’s section (Auntie K mode kicking in) for books I loved when I was younger and I found so many! I had to hold back (I do have some restraint) but I got some of the best…..and some others that I haven’t read yet.

about $25 worth of books!

I have found a treasure chest in this store….$96.00 worth of books, and I paid $25.00. Makes it even better!

So. that is the story of my book addiction. I could have worse ones…..right? 🙂



Filed under Baby, Books, Family

The Thornbirds (Colleen McCullough)

Even though this is my ‘new copy’, the back cover is missing….

This is another one of my favorite books that I just read recently- for probably the 22nd time. My friend Jess gave this copy to my for my birthday a couple years ago.

She got a new copy because she saw my tattered hand-me-down one falling apart on my bedside table. It looked pretty rough. There may have been an entire roll of tape involved. I remember her making fun of me for keeping such an old, messed-up book….and then getting me a new copy 🙂 Such a good friend.

This is kind of a throwback book by McCullough, I’ve checked out some of her other books and there are none that have really caught me like this one- Before this she has written a lot of books based in Rome, B.C., so this is a totally different era for her.  It’s another one that spans over many years and follows three main characters. It’s starts in New Zealand and follows the Cleary family to Australia where a new and better life awaits them. It really is a beautiful story- a romance mainly- but there is illicit love, a little bit of politics (not much, or I’d be completely bored), family secrets, and every day struggles. Fiona (Fee), Meggie, and Justine are the three protagonists- mother, daughter, and granddaughter. Throughout the book Meggie grows up and later discovers how some of her mother’s choices mirror her own and eventually alter her relationship with her own daughter. There is a T.V series that was done in the 80’s and I could not get into it. They stuck to the book really well for the most part but I think it really bugged me that Meggie didn’t have ‘titian hair’ in it. Sounds kind of lame saying it out loud (or would that be ‘on internet’?) but it’s true. If I remember correctly, she had black hair on the show. Brown is at least close, but black? C’mon. So I don’t recommend watching the show, but that’s just my inability to adapt to other people’s perception of what titian hair looks like.

Like our nicknames? Mine’s eitak….:)

This is a good, meaty (as in, not fluffy) novel that goes really well with a cup of coffee and followed with some Momma/Sister/Daughter time….Speaking of which, I believe M. and I are due for some hangout time at WholeFoods….

In the words of my baby sister, ‘I remember the first time I read the Thornbirds….it was magical. Magical.’



Filed under Books, Family

Early Morning Favorites

I am not an early riser (aside from work). I love not having to set my alarm, being able to sleep as late as I want….it rarely happens, but I love it. As you’ve seen in M’s posts, she is the very definition of ‘early riser’. When we both lived at home and shared a room she would try to wake me up at oh-dark-thirty to go for a jog. (C’mon, Kate! You’ll feel sooo good after!) Key word here being ‘try’. I think she got me up maybe twice.

So when my brain was done sleeping at 4:30 this morning after sleeping for three hours, I laid in bed til 6 just on principle.

Once I did get up, I just wandered around my house taking pictures of things that I like.

1. Linen Scented Candles (They make me feel like I’ve done laundry…hehe)

It makes my whole house smell pretty!

2. Coffee table books….or just stacks of books in general.

All highly recommended reads 🙂

3. The movie Mr. Holland’s Opus

Fantastic movie. Makes me cry every single time. But that’s just the kind of person I am.











4.  Coffee…and my Keurig.

My best friend in the morning!











5. This plaque my dear hubby carved for me when we were dating! (the VOWELS of our relationship: lAugh, lEarn, lIve, trUst, and lOve. I love him.)

I have to brag just a teensy bit! He carved this out by hand and painted the words himself 🙂









Just some things I found while meandering about my house this morning at oh-dark-thirty 🙂 Happy Saturday!


Leave a comment

Filed under Books, Coffee, Family, Woodworking