Friday, September 12, 2014

100 Books 2014: 63-68

More books! I'm getting so close to 100!
63. The Absolutely True Diary of a Part-Time Indian by Sherman Alexie This novel is about a teenage American Indian who lives on a reservation and has to make choices about his future.  He is an artist and likes comics so there are drawings scattered through the book, which I really liked. It was funny and sad and interesting. I don't think I've ever read anything about modern reservation life, it was a point of view that was new to me. Sherman Alexie has written quite a few books about reservation life, I'm going to try and pick up a few more.
64. A Tale for the Time Being by Ruth Ozeki My digital library lone expired while I was reading this, but it was so interesting I got back on the waiting list and finished it about 6 weeks later. The story is told by two narrators, a young Japanese girl who is writing in a diary, and a woman on an isolated island in the Pacific Northwest who finds the diary washed up on shore. The young girl, Nao, has decided to kill herself to escape bullying and her seemingly hopeless life but wants to document the life of her Buddist monk Grandmother first. The woman who finds the diary is a writer herself and is stuck on her own book. She reads the diary one day at a time and by about halfway through I was DYING for her to speed it up because I really wanted to know what happened. There are many twists and turns this book takes, the story ends up in a totally different place that you expect. I recommend this one if you like inventive fiction.
65. These Old Shades by Georgette Heyer This author was recommended to me because I like historical fiction and (interesting) love stories. I don't know if I just picked a bad one, but I wasn't into it at all. I'm not sure why I even finished it, it took me a long time. The protagonist is a foppish gentleman who is sharp tongued and it looking to get revenge on someone who wronged him a long time ago. Which sounds like something I could be into. But the wrong wasn't that bad, the punishment was way worse, and the love story was AWFUL. Basically he takes over a young girl in his charge who worships him and is a total idiot. Bleh.
66. White Oleander by Janet Fitch This book is beautifully written and very sad. Which is kind of my thing. It is about a young girl who gets shuffled through the foster system after her mother (a strange, beautiful artist) murders her boyfriend and ends up in jail. This is one I will probably reread sometime in the future.
67. Orphan Train by Christina Baker Kline The premise of this was very intriguing. Orphan children from the big cities put on trains to more rural areas in hopes of getting families. And it isn't like there were background checks, the children were just lined up and people picked them out like puppies. The people picking them out could make them part of the family or use them as free labor. Some parts of it were interesting, but it is bummer that the prologue gives you an overview of the woman's life so you know what is going to happen long before you are introduced to the characters the prologue is talking about. I would like to read more about the actual orphan trains in the future. I kind of can't believe that actually happened!
68. Under the Banner of Heaven by Jon Krakauer This book is a non fiction look at fundamentalist Mormon culture and history. I mentioned earlier in the year that I am completely fascinated by fundamentalist Mormons and have read several memoirs of women who have escaped the lifestyle. I recommend Escape by Carolyn Jessop if you are interested. This book is meticulously researched and I learned a lot about the roots of Mormonism, and the way the fundamentalists veered from the main church. I'm not a huge non fiction reader but this was written in a way that kept me interested (and sometimes shocked!) Jon Krakauer is most known for Into the Wild. I have added his book Into Thin Air to my want to read list.

Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Summer Send Off!

Sadly, summer is coming to a close. I've been having a great time this year and needed one last hurrah before it got too cold. I happened to be off this past Sunday and was able to get a pretty good group together to go to Rock Island one last time this season. It was cloudy pretty much all day, but it was still fun.
The best part is we found a new place to park that makes the trek to the swimming hole MUCH easier. There was no crying or injuries this time. I can't wait to use our new knowledge next summer! If you are in the area, park at the Twin Falls viewing area and then walk along the access trail. You still have to climb down the hill, but it isn't bad.
Here is Twin Falls. You can walk down to those rocks and check it out, but you can't swim down there. Not that I want to, it looks pretty rough!
Our little hike. We were all so stoked about the new route!
The most perfect swimming hole I've ever been too! I really wish it was closer to Nashville. It is about an hour and a half away. But worth it.
There was a lot of rock jumping. I'm still to chicken to do it. Maybe next year.
Have you seen these new seasonal Apple-ahhhh-ritas? They are really good! Kind of a mix of a cider and a margarita. Yum! And there we are pretending to lay out, even though it was cloudy. The water is FREEZING so occasionally you have to get out and warm up.
My friend Bethany brought a waterproof disposable camera and Travis took a selfie while he jumped. I can't wait to see how that one turns out! Haha!
We brought a little picnic: sandwiches and chips and oranges and PIE!
We stayed for about four hours then had to get back to Nashville. And we had to eat at Chuy's on the way home of course. It's tradition.
I'll be retiring my super noodle and packing all the summer stuff away to make room for our coats.
Goodbye for now Rock Island! We'll see you next summer!

Monday, September 8, 2014

Collection 24: Vintage Barrettes!

As much as I love vintage I don't have many pieces of vintage clothes that I can wear. It is hard to find stuff in my size and it's not practical for me to wear to work. For the past few years I've contented myself with vintage brooches (see an old post on my collection here) on my sweaters, but recently I've gotten into vintage barrettes! They are so cute and add a little touch of fun. Here is my little collection. 
These two sets are the first ones I ever found. They were at an antique mall in Pigeon Forge, TN and were still in the wrapper. I wear the whales a lot! The donkeys are super cute but they are pretty much the same color as my hair so I don't ever wear them. Look at those stubby little legs!
The cowgirl on the horse and the pair of birds were flea market finds. I've been keeping my eyes peeled but almost never see them! I wish I had a pair of the cowgirls! Or maybe a little cowboy to match! The two dog barrettes are from etsy. This shop, Rosebud Cottage has hundreds of vintage barrettes! It was really hard to narrow my selection down to two, but I had to go with a dog theme.
 I admired these barrettes from With Care Jewelry for so long before I finally decided to pull the trigger and treat myself. They are made with antique glass cabochons and are TINY and adorable. I've been wearing the snakes pretty much everyday since they came in the mail.
I hope I'll be able to find some more cute barrettes at the flea market this year. I can't get enough!

Sunday, September 7, 2014

Breakfast at Khan's!

Last weekend Travis and I went to Dyersburg, TN to visit his family. I took my camera with me, but for some reason the only photos I ended up taking were us at breakfast on the way out of town. But they are cute! So I'm going to share!
The pugs were on their way to my parents house for the weekend so they were with us. We wanted to give ourselves a little treat so we went to Khan's Desserts in East Nashville. As the name implies they have amazing vegan desserts, but they also do a great breakfast! (and lunch!) And they had some outside tables for the girls and I to wait while Travis made our order.
 Phyllis sat under this plant for most of our time there. 
 Such a precious thing! She is doing MUCH better after her tumor scare.
 We both always get the disco biscuit. It is SO GOOD. Travis gets his with both vegan sausage AND bacon. The egg is some kind of tofu thing maybe? I'm not sure but it is delicious. And the biscuits!
Phyllis came out of the plants to watch us eat. They got a few little crumbs. It started to sprinkle rain about this time and Priscilla would feel the drops on her head and think I was throwing her crumbs and try to catch them! It was pretty dang cute.
Yum! That is mine with just the vegan bacon. We've tried to recreate these biscuits at home but they are never as good. We got some sandwiches to go (The Surly Bird is perfection) and then headed out of town. Here are the only other pics I took the whole weekend. Travis and our nephew Ellis, in matching outfits as always! And since we were in the middle of nowhere, I splurged and got us a room with a jacuzzi tub! You better believe I sat in that thing and read for at least an hour! It was the best!

Monday, September 1, 2014

Estate Sale Report!

Last Friday my friend Thomas went with me to a few estate sales around town. There were a couple great houses! Check out the wallpaper in this dining room!
 Close up. The colors really make it, especially that acid green.
There was a bunch of silly Christmas stuff at this house. Don't you love the fabulous eye lashes on some of those snowmen?
 I was tempted by that hanging plant. And that thing with the string and the branches inside!
The lady who lived here obviously loved crafts There was a whole room full of pom poms and pipe cleaners and beads and craft kits. Everything in there was 5 for a dollar.
There was a whole box of doll heads! We bought five and took them to another friend's nearby house. I have a key so we went in and hid the doll heads all over her living room. She found them that night and said the first one made her scream! Hahaha. We had so much fun hiding them!
The people who lived here must have had a child in the 60's, and a grandchild in the 80's. There were boxes and boxes of toys that I had when I was little! I remember the commercial for that Hot Potato in the top of the photo. The rest of the box was full of Happy Meal toys and I'm pretty sure I had all of them.
This guy was kind of creepy! Apparently he is for kids who want a toy that is a jerk to them. If you can read the box, if you pick him up he says "Put me down, you're funny looking!' Among other things.
 Nut art. And a sweet little staircase display shelf. 
 The animals on these bowls are so cute!
A cow Comet cozy. I have two of these guys, a panda and a poodle. The cow was really greasy (from sitting above the skillet probably) so she stayed behind.
 Here is what I brought home, with bonus Scampi. 
 The Bart and the little Marty McFly toy are for a friend. 
 Cute cake decorations! I need to make a cake so I can use them. Maybe tomorrow...
The owl is a magnet! The only Christmas I came home with is the starburst ornament and that knit mouse. And I love the wishbone brooch!
And you know I can't leave behind a movie tie in game. It doesn't have the instructions but I'm sure we can find them online. Home Alone party this Christmas!

Sunday, August 31, 2014

Top Five! Movie Musicals

Recently we bought tickets to see The Book of Mormon when the national tour comes to Nashville in November. We saw Wicked earlier in the year and at some points I had a hard time understanding what they were singing so I decided to go ahead and listen to the Broadway cast recording of Book of Mormon. And oh my gosh it is HILARIOUS. I was crying laughing in my car listening to it the first time. I can't wait to see it in a few months! Here is a clip of the opening number when they performed it at the 2012 Tony's.

I have always loved musicals, and now that is all I want to listen to! We drove to Missouri this weekend and all I took were musical soundtracks (Thankfully Travis loves musicals too. We really belted out Les Miserables). It gave me an idea for a new little series. We'll see if I keep up with it. Every once in a while I'll talk about my "top five" something or other. So let's start this off with my top five movie musicals!
It was REALLY HARD for me to narrow it down to five. The more I thought about it the more movies I thought of that I have seen over and over. Then I asked Travis and he named a few I hadn't even thought of! Here is what I finally came up with:
Little Shop of Horrors: This one was easy, because it is my favorite movie of all time! My grandparents took me to see the play when I was about 4 years old and I was traumatized! All you had to say was "Feed Me!" and I would freak out! But now I love it. If you haven't seen it ,you NEED TO SEE IT. It is the story of a dorky young man who finds a man-eating plant from outer space. It is set in the 1950's and the chorus is three girls named after some of the best girl groups of all time (Ronette, Crystal, and Chiffon). I love all the music, I love Rick Moranis as Seymour Krelborn (if we ever had a kid you can almost bet I'm naming him Seymour), and Steve Martin plays a sadistic dentist! The play is better of course (and has a completely different ending) but I could watch the movie every day for the rest of my life. Here is my favorite part, "Suddenly Seymour." Which you could probably guess since I have a pretty huge tattoo of Audrey 2 (the flesh eating plant) with those words under it.

The Rocky Horror Picture Show: I didn't see this movie until I was 19. We went to one of Travis' friend's house to watch it and I was totally blown away. I bought the dvd the next day and watched it every day for a week! I feel like everyone has seen it, but if not it's another weird one: newlyweds Brad and Janet are traveling to visit their science teacher and take shelter in a strange castle because their tire blows out in a storm. Tim Curry is incredible as Dr. Frank-n-Furter who is a mad scientist transvestite trying to create the perfect man in a lab. The music is so good! We've been to see it at midnight a bunch of times and I'm hoping we'll be able to this year on Halloween.
Hedwig and the Angry Inch: This show is getting lots of press this year because it is on broadway staring Neil Patrick Harris. I would love to see it on stage, because the movie is amazing! John Cameron Mitchell plays Hedwig for the movie and is perfect. The movie is about a rock band fronted by East German transexual Hedwig. It is about Hedwig's journey to find herself. It's really beautiful and makes me cry every time (I love movies that make me cry!). The music is all kinds of glam rock inspired, my favorite songs are Wig In a Box, Sugardaddy, and Wicked Little Town (the Tommy Gnosis version).
The Sound of Music: This one had to be included on the list because it is a family favorite. My grandpa recorded the soundtrack onto two cassette tapes for me, and my dad had the piano book and loved to play pretty much all of the songs from the movie. This movie is a classic and I'm sure you have all seen it. Julie Andrews is the most perfect musical star and I think this is my favorite movie of hers. I don't own this one yet, I think I need to remedy that.
West Side Story: I can vividly remember the first time I saw this. My dad rented it for me from a little gas station near our house that rented movies called the Rapid Pak. It was summer and I was probably 10 and I sat in our papasan chair and watched it while everyone was outside in the yard. I was totally blown away and was obsessed with it for the rest of the summer. (Are you sensing a pattern? I can never just like something, I always get totally obsessed!) This one is set in the mid 1950's in New York and is based on Romeo and Juliet. Instead of the warring families it involves to rival gangs. The final scene makes me cry every single time, no matter how many times I've seen it. They are performing this soon at the symphony center downtown (as in the symphony is playing the music over the movie!) and I'm regretting not getting tickets!

And here are some titles that narrowly missed being in my top five! A local theater troupe is doing Jesus Christ Superstar next week and we're definitely going to see it!

What is your favorite musical? Do you think they are too cheesy? Did you ever have a part in a musical? I always regret not trying out for one in high school. 

Friday, August 29, 2014

Nashville Flea: August Edition!

It has been HOT here in Tennessee for the past week or so. Heat indexes over a hundred some days! I wasn't sure if I'd make it to the flea this month, but my good friend Thomas offered to go with me, so we headed down to the fair grounds this past Friday. Here is a little of what we saw. 
 That big blue taxidermy fish is so beautiful! 
 I really like old shell are like this one. It was a little too expensive for me, but I'm on the lookout for a similar one to add to my vintage Florida shelf.
Glorious lamps! Have you ever seen anything like those shades! I'm actually on the lookout for a new lamp, but I didn't need two and I'm sure they won't split these guys up.
If I didn't already have four useless ashtrays in my house I might have picked up this sweet mama and baby deer one. How cure are they?
 Look at this purse! I REALLY want one of these. So gross and weird and awesome! It was 75 dollars though. Travis claims he saw one with a baby gator on it at the goodwill outlet but wasn't sure I would want it. I don't know if he went temporarily insane or what.
 I can't decide which of these guys is funnier to me. Derp on the let or screamy on the right. 
 Earlier in the day Thomas and I had been talking about these so it was funny to see them just a little while later! I have a very vivid memory of the Pizza Hut commercial advertising these puppets. Does Pizza Hut still give out toys? I had Little Food and Spike but really wanted Ducky!
 Cute poodle!
 This frog model was so neat! I wonder if it originally had feet. It was big too, about as big as a basketball I'd say. I didn't ask the price. The guy selling it is usually a little high (in his prices) and I really don't have a spot for it. But I love it! I hope it went home with someone.
Here is what I came home with. Isn't that dream pet style deer cute? It was my first purchase and only 50 cents! I haven't bought a carnival chalk prize in a while, the squirrel was too cool to pass up!
 My third E.T. and a sweet knee hugger.
Travis went to the flea the next day while I was at work and brought me home some photos. Including this awesome fishing one!
And last but not least, this little creature from the black lagoon guy. He doesn't shoot sparks anymore, but he is still cute!
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