Sunday, November 28, 2010

Books: Quinn Brothers

This is another series I read during the summer. (It seems so long ago now, sigh.) The Chesapeake Bay Saga is a set of four books about the Quinn Brothers. It initially starts out with the three brothers coming together for a fourth brother they knew nothing about. That makes more sense during reading. They are listed in order below. And rather than me telling you about everything I thought I'd find some other reviews. I mean, Nora Roberts has her formula. It makes a nice calming read for me, but there are others who are much more critical though I didn't find any of those :).

Sea Swept
Rising Tides
Inner Harbor
Chesapeake Blue

Review One
Review Two
Sort of Review Three

Friday, November 26, 2010

TV: The Best

Somebody's list of the Top Rated TV Shows is posted below. The posting was inspired by this from eonline. For someone who records as much as I do, this list should bring smiles. Unfortunately, only one show on this list is a fav of mine right now. (Although Lost ended this year, it seems like it was last year.) Well, which one is it?

Big Bang Theory
Two and a Half Men
30 Rock
True Blood
United States of Tara
Friday Night Lights
America's Got Talent
Hell's Kitchen
So You Think You Can Dance
Rookie Blue
NCIS: Naval Criminal Investigative Service
The Mentalist
Lie to Me
Miami Medical
Breaking Bad
The Good Wife
The Bachelorette
True Beauty
60 Minutes
Family Guy
American Dad!
How I Met Your Mother
Better Off Ted
Gossip Girl

Oh, and I didn't forget about Young Justice. The pilot is premiering today with the remainder of the series scheduled for January 2011.

Monday, November 22, 2010

Miscellaneous: X-Ray Machine

I don't know where you've been, but to NOT hear the contoversy over the x-ray machines at the airports you'd have to be a hermit without access to any of the modern conveniences, like TV, Internet, and neighbors.

I am of two opinions. I understand that we need to protect ourselves. Terrorists are trying to get as clever as they can to make Americans suffer, that includes apparently putting explosive powder in underwear. To make sure we aren't victims, everyone should be checked. If people are out there crazy enough to put explosives next to their private parts or commit suicide, they are certainly crazy enough to arm children in hopes TSA have mercy and let them on the plane. I'd rather be on a plane in which everyone was declared safe than on one where TSA had leniency.

However, the lengths to which we are going are making me not want to travel at all. I don't want to be subject to an x-ray machine in which the levels of radiation may be suspect. I certainly don't want my children to be exposed as they will have more times in their lives for travel than I have left in my lifetime. I'm a person who turned down my third mammogram in as many weeks because I didn't like the doses I was getting.

I don't trust anybody. I don't trust all the people driving on the road with me, I don't trust the cashiers at the registers where I shop, and I don't trust those TSA personnel. Is someone watching them to make sure they are photographing and sharing what they see? Cellphones do amazing things these days. I would hate to recognize my body on YouTube.

Some people have even suggested that people not be allowed on the plane without the body screen and eliminate pat downs. I do not like that idea at all. B's mother has metal in her knee - what are they going to do? Skin her to make sure it isn't a bomb?

I am extremely tempted to make things difficult and request a private screening for myself - and possibly my children on a trip I have scheduled next year. B doesn't have any concerns. But you hear stories in which TSA officers put their hands in a man's underwear, three year olds who get their bears snatched away (couldn't the bear go with her through the scanner?), and fathers who strip their own children to hurry the pat down. And I may not have a choice anyway as the last four airplane trips B and I were selected "randomly" for a pat down. I'm thinking of wearing a bathing suit, leggings, and flip flops. And I'd rather have a dog sniffing my privates than have man hands touch my body, although I have heard that personnel will be gender appropriate. Can I have the German Shephard option?

What about other countries? From what I've heard they aren't having this issue because they still profile. I guess we have to think about being selective when it comes to complaining. Our stance on profiling has lead to this.

In the end I don't really know. Radiation or molestation?

Friday, November 19, 2010

Men: Lamman Rucker

Name: Lamman Rucker
Best Known For: TV and Movies, Tyler Perry Movies
Year of Birth: 1971
Status: Single, but attached?
Height: 6'3"
Fun Fact: BA in Information Technology and Business AND a graduate degree in Education and Curriculum Development.

I tried, but I couldn't resist. He's tall. He's got dimples. He's cute.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Chocolate: Nestle Tollhouse Cookie-Brownie Delight

We bought the mix in a moment of weakness.

1. I didn't follow all of the directions the way I should have, not beating the butter for the cookie dough. So we didn't quite like the way the cookie tasted when it was baked. Was that due to my mistake or what?

2. I made the batch in my 9x13 glass dish. Most of the time I make brownies I cook them until they're done. Just a few days later they are too dry and crumbly. So maybe my second mistake was not cooking them longer.

3. It bothers me that a search of their site doesn't bring up any Cookie-Brownie Delight. What? Am I blind now? Or worse, they are so scared of their product they can't put it on their website. Where is that customer service number...

4. Taste? Oh, yeah. It tastes okay, but there wasn't anything spectacular about them. The brownie part tasted good, but the cookie wasn't quite right. Like they manipulated the recipe to make the cookie and brownie more compatible, but ruined the taste.

5. The box comes in packs of two. So...I'm going to make the cookie part correctly, use muffin cups for more even cooking, and cross my fingers.

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Books: Do Me, Do My Roots

In a way Do Me, Do My Roots reminded me of Marshmallows for Breakfast. There's enough drama and stuff going on (maybe it was a little more busy), but there was a difference that made me enjoy Do Me more. It had a happy ending.

Emily and her two sisters have a hair dyeing get together every two weeks. They are close and share a lot of things together, working out the kinks of their relationships. She is still getting over the death of her husband while her sisters are trying to find their perfect matches. All of them seem to be failing in that regard, but the author, Eileen Rendahl, throws some drama their way.

I've thought about giving my books ratings as I move through them, but unless they were superb or horrible I don't vary much. So I'll just say Amazon reviewers did not give this book any 1- or 2-star ratings. :)

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

TV: &^%$@ Cable

This problem has been annoying for some time now (and it doesn't help that B likes to watch things in HD.) It makes me so mad that it happens only when we really want to watch something. What is it? It's the visual on the TV skipping, freezing, jumping, and "blocking."

Sometimes it just sits there frozen while the sound continues to run. Other times there's no sound, but the picture is jumping and "blocking" (making cubes or rectangles of color) across the faces. It happened a lot when I wanted to watch Lost - you know, when it was getting good. I'm ranting now because my Amber Tamblyn episode of House is messed up.

Is it Fox? Is it HD? Is it Comcast? I don't know, but they really need to get this mess fixed!

Done ranting now.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Miscellaneous: People

My local radio station has these news stories in the morning that make you say things like "Woah!" and "Seriously?" So of course I listen to them every morning and share with coworkers. I decided to share some of these stories with you too :)

So this woman befriends a homeless woman and lets her sleep in the car...more.

They found this 2 year old tied...more.

There are some really stupid people out there like the men who did this and this.

Really crazy people like the woman who hated...more and the woman who during her anger...more.

Some of these stories are just sad like this.

Some people.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Men: B

Sorry, no pictures. Instead we just have a glowing review of my favorite man, B.

He's like a big teddy bear.

He is a sweetheart. He brings me tea when I'm feeling sick or on cold nights.

He makes dinner for us every night, even though I get home from work earlier.

He always knows what I like or what to get for me. He's either really intuitive (to me) or I'm an open book. I prefer the former.

He makes me laugh.

We're starting to think alike at over 20 years together.

I couldn't do this parenting thing without him.

He brought his giving family into my life.

I'm a lucky gal and couldn't ask for a better post subject on my birthday.

Monday, November 1, 2010

Chocolate: Odds and Ends

This is not a real chocolate post. I would love to say I made my cake balls, but someone *ahem* MIL *cough* excuse me... something caught in my fingers... gives us sweets AND it was Halloween. Since we really can't justify having more than one sweet in the house at a time, the cake balls will have to wait.

On a side note, the afore*un*mentioned someone pointed me to a video on Amazon featuring Bakerella's book, "Cake Pops." Bakerella goes through sticking a cake ball on a stick step by step. Sweet!

Oh, and speaking of sweets, my father just celebrated one of those big milestone birthdays. The cake was from a local bakery and get this - I COULDN'T FINISH THE WHOLE SLICE! It was that thick with chocolaty goodness. Granted, I'd just eaten a lush salmon dinner, but still! That just isn't like me at all. If you know me irl and want the location of this cake, ring me. Otherwise you'll just have to imagine how deliciously rich this cake was. ...four layers....

Lastly, we didn't get many trick or treaters. How about you? I encouraged B to buy an extra bag of Nerds, Laffy Taffy, and Sweettarts to pad the Twix, Snickers and Milky Way. Now guess what. :) There's a lot left over. 'Nuff said.


...before the storm.

I like November. It's my birthday. While I don't insist on receiving birthday gifts (getting too old to do the whole birthday party thing), B always gets me something I really want. :)

We get a first peek at the holidays. I get several days off work so the holiday months go quickly. That can be bad, but it makes the work year slide into the home stretch. Like before I know it, it's spring.

But, as far as the actual work goes, the load gets really heavy. It's like it knows those holidays will make me happy and does its best to knock me down a peg or three.

So let me share the happy while it's still calm. My birthday present :) :) :)