Wednesday, August 9, 2017

Fall Books 2017 -- New Series by Fav Authors

Every year I get all worked up about fall books that are coming out and this year is no exception. The big theme for the Fall seems to be favorite authors kicking off new series. WOW!

Maggie Steivfater is starting a new series so of course I'm crazy-excited to get my hands on it. The first book is called All the Crooked Saints. Get it to me!

Leigh Bardugo, who wrote Six of Crows, one of my all-time favorite reads, has Wonder Woman: Warbringer coming out at the end of August. A Wonder Women prequel??? YES PLEASE! Language of Thorns is also coming out this fall and takes place in her amazing Greishaverse.

Kristen Cashore, who wrote Graceling series, another total fav, has Jane, Unlimited coming out. She hasn't released a new book in forever, so I'm falling all over myself to get it. Though, there's a "choose your own adventure" element (maybe) that I've read that sounds a little kooky.

The Cruel Prince (The Folk of the Air) is coming out by Holly Black. I've loved some of her books and not liked others. This one is faerie-centered, so I'm all in.

John Green has a new book coming in October called Turtles All the Way Down -- I haven't heard too much about the plot. If it's fun John, like Paper Towns and Looking for Alaska, I'm in. If it's got terminally-ill teens, I'll pass.

Stephanie Perkins, who wrote Anna and the French Kiss and all those other lovely YA romances has a slasher/thriller called There's Someone in Your House. If it's gruesome, I may need to pass, but I'd love to give it a try anyway.

Plus, three of my favorite romance novelist have new books out: Kylie Scott, Sarah MacClean and Scarlett Cole.

That doesn't even include the debut authors with new books I've been hearing about. Such as The Hazel Wood (magicians, princesses, oh my!) by Melissa Albert, and Wicked Like a Wildfire by Lana Popovic. Both, incidentally, have beautiful covers that make me want to buy the hardcover, just so I can prop it up on my desk.


Related Posts
All my "Fall Books" posts

Monday, August 7, 2017

What the WHAT?! Rainbow's Book for the ACLU

What the what?!

So I'm doing research for my annual Fall Books post (coming soon) and happen upon this ... HOW DID THIS SLIP MY ATTENTION?!

Rainbow Rowell wrote a short-story with the proceeds going to the ACLU?! Click here right now to get in. 

For the record, I loved Fangirl with my whole heart. I practically fell into the book. I didn't love Carry On and I stopped reading Eleanor & Park because something very bad happens to the characters, and I don't read seriously-sad stories. Did you read Lifeline? That's on my to-read pile.

Will update post once I'm finished reading this short. Regardless, my $3 went to a good cause.

Related Posts:
All my "Book" nerd-out posts

Sunday, August 6, 2017

I Hate Scatter Rugs

You know what I'm talking about ... those rugs you get and toss on the floor in your bathroom or office or living room. And, if you're like me, you don't get the under-pads so the rugs move constantly (or you DO get the pads and they don't work ... argh!).

And then there was that one time we washed a bathroom rug and it fell apart and broke our washing machine and I'm pretty sure we had to replace it. The rug AND the washing machine.

See, my loathing of these scatter rugs runs deep.

This week I've been spending a bit more time in my kids' bathroom than usual (we had company) and the two scatter rugs in there -- that I found on sale at who-remembers-where? store -- are just a mess. And I'm pretty sure I haven't decently washed them in an embarrassingly long time (because of the unfortunate washing machine incident mentioned above). They don't match (charming!) and I'm pretty sure they are not made for bathrooms. Total fail.

So guess what?! I ordered my FAVORITE solution to the scatter rugs problem. Yes! Flor carpet tiles!

If you've been around my blog for a while you know I LOVE Flor tiles. Honestly, you'd think I was getting paid by the company ...

I've used Flor tiles in my laundry room ...

Early Laundry Room Project Post
 my family room ...
Finishing Up the Family Room Post
 my front entry ...
Entryway Project Continues Post
 and even my master bathroom ...
Ugly Bathroom Update Post
Like I did in the master bathroom, I ordered an inexpensive tiles with a cute stripe and got free shipping because (of course) I get all their promotional emails. I wax rhapsodic about these tiles in the master bathroom post, but in a nutshell: mold-resistant, recycled material, dries quickly, NO SLIP (mostly) underside and easy to configure and fit into spaces. 

And the cute stripe is similar to the stripe in this bathroom so, if we ever move, I could probably mix the two patterns for a larger space. BOOM. 

After picture of the girls' bathroom to follow ... 

Related Posts: 

Monday, July 31, 2017

Saratoga and Alice Time

Every summer for the past five or so years we've spent time in the Berkshires at the summer camp my sister and her husband run. (Click here to see it.) And every year I'm reminded of how much I love this place. Western Massachusetts is just so lovely, with winding roads and hidden-away places. It's worth a visit if you've never been.

This year, after we dropped Leah off for her week as a camper, Alice and I toured Saratoga Springs and thereabouts. This is a special week for us because it's just all about what Alice (at age 8) and I like to do.

We toured the Museum of Dance and Hall of Fame, ate at some great little places, found a little beach and even enjoyed an indoor climbing wall during the two rainy afternoons. We saw a movie (The Emoji Movie, don't rush to see it) and treated ourselves to a sugary snack, which we never do.

Alice is almost old enough to attend my sister's camp, so these summer weeks with just the two of us will come to an end ... maybe as soon as next summer, if she's ready.

I'm OK with that. Just as long as I get to go to camp, too.

Related Posts:
The story of the camp in the Berkshires
All my "Adventure" posts

Monday, July 17, 2017

The Mom Purse - The Summer Tote Project

Last, but not least, in this three-part Totes series is the jam-packed, summer-ready Mom Purse.

I'm a big fan of having a few purses at the ready: a tiny one for just my wallet and phone, a medium sized bag for adult day trips when I don't have to pack like a Mom and a big Mom tote. And I like to switch based on the need for the day, when I can.

Items very in each of the bags, but the Mom Tote is what I tend to use the most. It's slightly over-sized for a purse and I can jam whatever I need into it -- or out of it.

Here's the rundown of what's usually inside:
The Summer MOM TOTE
  • Wallet, keys and iPhone, obviously
  • Sunscreen
  • Sunglasses for me and child-sized
  • Notebook for to-do and grocery lists
  • A little bag of Advil, lotion, lip balm and Altoids
  • Tissues
  • Felt pens in assorted colors, also a Sharpie and pen/pencils
  • Hand sanitizer 
  • iPads - mine and/or the kids'
  • Book or Kindle or magazine
  • S'Well Water Bottles, because they're friggin' magic
  • A bag of nuts or granola bar for an emergency
  • Foldaway shopping bags
This Mom Tote is also from LL Bean ... because you know how much I love those interior pockets. I picked it up last year, so the pattern is no longer available. I also got it monogrammed, because I'm fancy. 

There you have it. All my Summer Totes ready to roll. 

There are a few others events that might warrant a pre-packed totes ... such as camping or picnicking. But I find my family doesn't do that kind of thing often enough. What do you have?  

Related Posts: 
Park and Tennis Tote

Thursday, July 13, 2017

Well, We Need a Boat

We took a family weekend trip to Lake Geneva, Wisconsin and it was awesome. It's got a great little downtown; we ate, saw a movie and did some shopping. But the weekend highlight was renting a speed boat for three hours and cruising the lake.

Oh Captain My Captain! 

The Girls On the Lake

We had such a fun time on the boat we started to imagine what it would be like to own a boat and a lake house and spending every summer weekend out on the lake. Glorious daydream.

Anyway, do you have a boat and lake house you're done with? I think we need one.

Related Posts
All Summer posts

Wednesday, July 12, 2017

Teaching Yoga - Namaste

This week, I'm a yoga teacher.

Which is bananas because I've never taught yoga, nor am I certified to do so. But my sister is coaching at a nearby camp and needed to occupy the kids for a few hours this week.

And I've been taking yoga for 20+ years, soooo I'm "mostly" qualified.

The cool thing is, teacher yoga has always been on my goals list for years. But getting certified is pricey and a huge time commitment. And never being in front of a class before, it's hard to know if it's worth the effort.

It just reminds me of my current mantra: That's just who I am this week, folks.

Who know, next week, I could be an art dealer!