Welcome to my greatest passion in life, BOOKS! Come on in kick off your shoes, grab a cup of tea [Java] and join me while I discuss my life and books that I read, authors I love or dislike, post reviews, ask for your opinions, just chat about stuff, and maybe swap a book or two.

Friday, November 30, 2007

A new Contest and Swap

Hey go on over to DaBookLady's Swap for the new contest # 3 "Between the Bushes" You could be the next winner. And be sure and sign up for the BABEs Book and Bookmark swap that starts up again in January. Its fun and you could learn about a new author and make a new "book" friend to boot! There's also a wonderful recipe contest over on DaBookLady's Recipe blog. Who couldn't use more recipes? And hop on over to PBDesigns blog for a "PAy it Forward" sign up and you could be one of the 1st three to post and get a free handmade item sent to you. A great contest on author Virginia Smith's blog and you could win a $500 shopping spree. Over on A Bookworm's Diary is a whole bunch of listing's on contests so be sure and visit her blog.

Oh...yes I almost forgot....I have entered a contest to win the cookbook I'm Dreaming of a Choclate Christmas by Marsel Desaulniers and Ron Manville for the Christmas Give-Away over at Baking Delights Blog contest running now through December 18th.

I entered a few book give aways for a Deceptively Delicious cookbook on Girl on a Mission's blog and another one on Lesa's blog for Hell for the Holidays.

I signed up for Mike's newsletter to get in on a chance to win Vanished a signed copy by Kathryn Mackel.

I just love contests!!!!

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Sad News Good News!

Our youngest son was in an awful motorcycle accident 9 days ago. He was on life support for the whole time and the good news is that they have just taken him off...and he is breathing on his own...thank you so much to all for your prayers....he has a long way to full recovery, but he will recover....it is just a rough time for our home so I will not be blogging a lot for next few weeks.
Merry Christmas
Happy New Year
to all of my blogging friends old and new!!!

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

When Did the Writing of Books Begin?

In surfing the book scene I came across an article on the writing of books and found the information quite intriguing...

"In the year 1456, Johann Gutenberg and Peter Schoeffer printed their great Bible. Now the question?????

How many new books do you think had been printed by 1498, 42 years later, and just 500 years ago?
Some of you may know, but most people I talk with, even most librarians, are astonished when they hear the number.

Five hundred years ago, the new presses had spread like brushfire through Europe. The people had suddenly come into possession of some fifteen million new books. Scholars argue about the number. It could've been as few as eight million or as many as twenty four. But the output of new books had been staggering by any reasonable estimate. And those books reflected some thirty thousand titles. I find this to be astonishing!

Fifteen million books had been flung into a world where scholars would travel miles to visit a library stocked with twenty hand-written volumes. And it'd all happened in 42 years or a little more.

Let's see if we can put that in perspective. Where were we, you and I, 42 years ago? Let's see...??? I was living in a resort area near the beach in upstate NY, hmmm... I still live near the beach...just on the West coast this time instead of the East coast....but neither here nor there, let's continue....

Of course some of you hadn't been born yet. But let me give you a little time-line here:
  • The programmable computer, first conceived by Charles Babbage in the 1830s, wasn't finally built until the 1930s.
  • The computer of 1956 was a huge isolated machine.
  • In 1943 Thomas Watson, Chairman of IBM, had said, I think there's a world market for maybe five computers.
  • In July, 1958, a patent war was underway.
  • By 1969, complete central processing were added to units
  • Then Noyce formed a new company, INTEL, for INTegrated Electronics, and he started producing whole computer mother-boards.
  • Costs plunged.
  • Integrated circuits first really touched our lives a few years later when we all started carrying pocket calculators. But none of us yet had a clue where all this was going. Who could have guessed???
  • Even with a calculator in his pocket, the president of Digital Equipment Company could say, as late as 1977, "There's no reason people would want computers in their homes." Little did he know????
  • Then came a key invention -- the invention of modern software.
  • Software made it possible for you and me to use our computers without writing their programs.
  • At that point computers promptly did enter our homes, and they were soon entering the closest quarters of our daily lives as well. I got my 1st computer in 1995, and didn't have a clue how to use it. Wow look at me now!
  • Today we all can have a computer not only in our homes or on our laps, but in our hands ....

I remember back in the 1970s, later part, reading an article about the "future" where it said one day people would be able sit on the beach and receive phone calls and be able to shop everywhere with just a plastic card? That was absurd to think of at that time and I remember laughing at such a predidction...it further said that people would be able to shop with swiping their arms over a board that would read all your personal info as it would be a chip implanted beneath your skin??? Hmmmm I wonder when that little invention will come...no wait we already have that technology ...

But today the world changes so fast that to buy a new computer or phone is a challenge and frankly quite disturbing, because by the time you get it into your car; drive home; go into the house; read the directions; and figure out how to use it and set it up; it is already obsolete.... is that not the frustrating truth of it all?

I recently had to buy a camera and experienced that same type of choice...my gosh what do I get the varieties were overwhelming...which one????

So as far as books you can now; get them in book stores; on the web; on your palm pilot; cd; or even on your phones....reading a book is just a look down ....I for one love it, because I want to read them all...however, when it comes to sitting down for a relaxing hour or two, I want to curl up with a paper book. One I can touch and feel and enjoy the words in print in front of my eyes....I also enjoy the artwork of the illustrator and the excitment of the prelude....

Yes books have come a long way, but I still want the old fashion book, the one I can look at in print and color...collecting them is my passion and the room for them all has become my challenge!

Saturday, November 17, 2007

Book Club Reading

I am reading "Adventures in Thrift" a classic online book in a book club group over at Country Girls' blog. We read chapters each week and comment on our progress. It is an interesting book and one I probably would not have ordinarily read. It was written in 1916 by Richardson, Anna Steese

Wednesday, November 14, 2007

Some Interesting and Mind Boggling Facts

I was surfing again, for interesting blogs on reading and came across Whats the Rumpus and loved it! As I scrolled down the blog I pondered on a post that I totally loved, it discussed one of my favorite movies with Bruce Willis in his Die Hard movies. Eric Lichtenfeld writes a "critique" article on the Die Harddoes a really cleaver and amusing riff on the "greatest one-liner in movie history." I've always been one to not condone the 4-letter word usage in any one's presence, but in this movie it is definitely a great one-liner masterpeice making the movie more memorable!

Willis' new movie this year Live and Let Die Hard and to know more and don't mind being told most of the plot then be sure to read the synopsis .

Then there is the thought about the names young couples are using to name their kids these days??? I mean what is it to name a child "Pepsi" anyways? I thought that was a drink? I also have met a women named America.... that is a place where we live...although it would probably be an honor to be named after such a great country, I still feel it is a bit much....Don't parents know that kids go to school and have to live with these names all their lives? And look at what the celebrities are naming their children??? Take a quiz and see if you are not as amazed as I was.....

I know this does not have a lot to do with books but these are some interesting and mind boggling facts of life.....

But really people here are some things that put a smile on my face and make me glad I live here in the USA:

After all of that I did some research on the upcoming Thanksgiving Parade. I found "ASK JOE the DOORMAN's PARADE TIPS" to be really helpful if you are actually going to the parade, but what if your just watching???

Well it starts at 9am, of course that is New York time people so be sure to adjust for your area. And did you realize that Macy's parade is 75 years old! Wow.....for over 75 Years, Macy's has given us a tradition which both celebrates America and marks the official beginning of the Christmas holidays....my favorite time of the year....

A few years ago I made a Family Cookbook for my entire family, whew that was a real job, anywho I ended the book with the history of the lighting of the New York City's Rockefeller Christmas tree. It is quite a site and has some interesting facts like the # of lights on the tree and the size of the tree...in 2003 it was 79' high...wowooo...

And if you plan to attend this year, here are some tips..

  • When: Wednesday, November 28, 2007, 7PM-9PM
  • Where: Rockefeller Center, Rockefeller Plaza, From West 48th Street to West 51st Street between 5th and 6th Avenues
  • Directions:
    Take the B,D,F,V to Rockefeller Center/47-50th Street station
    Take the N,R,W to 49th Street and Seventh Avenue
    Take the E to Fifth Avenue and 53rd Street
  • More Information: 212-632-3975
Tips For Attending The Tree Lighting Ceremony At Rockefeller Center:

First and foremost, leave your car at home

Monday, November 12, 2007

Mother May I? Monday Fun Game Day

Ok Today's "Fun Monday" at Hootin Anni's Monday Game is called
Mother May I , and the answer is "Yes, you may!"

You're to take 30 GIANT steps away from your computer. 30 GIANT STEPS - IN ANY direction. You may have to make a few turns and pivots so you won't run into any walls or such...don't want any injuries today! WARNING: Avoid any obstacles in the way- if there's a door...open it & continue, if there is a wall...pivot AROUND it. You could end up outdoors in the hall....or upstairs if I decide to go in that directions!!! "Oh my, Then after the 30 giant steps, you must Stop!TAKE A PHOTO AND/OR NOTE WHAT YOU'RE SEEING!!Then, take 15 baby steps back and after the 15 baby steps, Stop!TAKE A PHOTO AND/OR NOTE WHAT YOU'RE SEEING and you can look in any direction -to your right, left, up not down ---that'd be your feet!!. What you see is what we get!! Stop! It's all about your first glance after the giant/baby steps!!! [You will have two photos/stories for us- the 30 giant steps then, the 15 baby steps going back] Don't forget---ask "Mother may I"!!Okay...go. "Mother may I?" "Yes, YOU MAY!!"

So here is my 1st photo that I took that was a picture of my flowers in my living room area. It's not real, but I love pink so I got this arrangement for that main purpose. It stands in the corner next to my TV away from any chance of it getting knocked down by any g-kiddies when they visit. :)

I then took my 15 "baby" steps back and looked a little up to my left and there was "George". Geaorge has been with me for many many years. I named him the minute I got him from a neighbor who said her Ganddad hunted him back in 1929. I had always wanted a Deer over my mantle, and since my hubby nor I hunt, it was the perfect fit as she no longer had a place to hang him. I named him George, because it was the first name that came to my mind when I saw him. [don't have a clue why???] Isn't he just too cute? Anywho, this is my 2nd photo for the Mother May I monday Fun Day game!

Friday, November 9, 2007

Some Great Book Group Ideas

Today I was blog surfing and found a new way of reading and joining a book group. Country Girl at Heart has a Blogger Book CLub where you read 1-3 chapters a week from an online free book and then post about it... now its free no unnecessaryt shopping for MORE books to put onto our shelves, and its fun.. Go and try her out...
Some ideas if you want to start a reading group:
  • The size for a lively discussion is around six to ten people, and when thinking of how many members to include in your group, you need to take into account other factors, such as hectic schedules, children issues, likes and dislikes of the chosen books, unanticipated conflicts, or varying interest in topics chosen. This may mean that 3 or 4 people may be unable to attend any given meeting. Hence, the best strategy is to have enough people join the group so that at each meeting you are assured approximately 6 to 8 participants.
  • Consider having a total membership of 10 to 12 to insure optimum attendance at every meeting.
  • How Often Should You Meet? For most groups, meeting more than once a month would be a struggle, and if you meet less, the group will never get any momentum going. It is a good idea to meet on some predictable day, such as the first Wednesday of every month. Many work scedules play a heavy role in the time and day that is picked or church obligations.
  • Where Should You Meet? You could rotate among members' homes or use library rooms, coffee chops, book stores, local community centers, churches, etc. Of course, online discussions are a possibility for all types of groups.
  • How Much Will it Cost? There are various costs associated with having a reading group, depending on how you choose to do things. Obviously, the books cost money but there may be other costs and a club dues might be the way to cover some of these costs like; if you mail out reminders, there are the costs of printing and mailing, food at the meetings, [you can also do pot-luck style which is good for busy members who don't eat before the meetings] there might also be a cost for where you meet if it is at an outside facitlity. An e-mail list or phone tree can be fairly simple to set up and easy to administer, thus saving on paper and mailing costs. You could ask members for a one-time fee to cover six months of postage, snacks, etc. Or, have a monthly dues or ask each member to supply self-addressed-stamped envelopes.
  • Members' Responsibilities; Of course, the most obvious responsibility of members is to read the book. Other ground rules should be discussed among the group at the first meeting. The discussion might include issues of punctuality. At what time will meetings begin and end? What are the expectations of group members regarding level and consistency of participation (what if members have to miss a session? what if they miss several in a row? what if someone only comes once in a while?) How will we deal with the cost issues? Should members be allowed to bring their children? Are guests allowed?
    It is a good idea to discuss all of these issues at the first meeting of the group and to make decisions, as a group, about such things as location, food, cost-sharing, how books will be chosen, whether there will be one facilitator or if the role will rotate among members, as well as the issues mentioned above.
  • The Role of the Facilitator; The facilitator may be the same person each time, or members may choose a rotation system for the role, depending on the needs and wants of the group. The facilitator is responsible for:
  1. Monitoring start and stop times
  2. Encouraging dialogue from all participants
  3. Reviewing the book carefully for specific discussion topics
  4. Identifying the next facilitator if the group uses a rotation for the facilitator role
  5. Questions to ask at the first meeting
  6. Where and when will we meet?
  7. How will we notify people of meeting locations, times, and reading selections?
  8. What are the costs involved and how will we divide them up?
  9. What the dues will be to each member?
  10. How will we choose books to read?
  11. What are our basic ground rules?
  12. Will we have a single facilitator or will the role rotate among members?
  13. How will we purchase the books, individually or as a group?
  14. Make sure the books are available at all times.
  15. Plan accordingly, and order the books about 4 - 6 weeks before you actually need them.
  16. Keep in mind that not everyone in the group needs to have read the book completely; often the discussion of the ideas in the book is robust enough on its own merits. In other words, don't cancel the reading group just because not everyone has had a chance nor the time to read the book.
  17. Ask and encourage each participant to participate.
  18. Maybe start a RR {Round Robin , going around the room asking questions or having that member discuss their likes and dislikes of the book
  19. Determine the next book, and set the meeting time
  20. It is often a good idea to set the meeting time up to three months in advance, on the same day of the week and time on the calendar for each month. Be sure to email a schedule to each member or snail mail it to them.

    These are a few simple rules for groups in your local area, looking on the web is a good source for getting your questions and learning more about your group...Good luck and let me know how it goes, and your group name and place and I will post it here for others to see...

Monday, November 5, 2007

Who's Reading Books???

Here's a scary thought. According an MSNBC poll, one in four Americans read no books last year. Read below what the poll learned:

  • One in four adults read no books at all in the past year, according to an Associated Press-Ipsos poll released Tuesday. Of those who did read, women and older people were most avid, and religious works and popular fiction were the top choices.
    The survey reveals a
    nation whose book readers, on the whole, can hardly be called ravenous. The typical person claimed to have read four books in the last year — half read more and half read fewer. Excluding those who hadn’t read any, the usual number read was seven.

So what are Americans doing instead? Working? Playing video games? I know most children would rather play a video game than read, and in fact schools take the students to computer labs where they play games to learn about navigation on computers, well at least there is learning involved in that. So what are people doing? Watching TV? Talking on their cell phones?

How many books did you read last year?

I know I read at least a 2 dozen…

Friday, November 2, 2007

Onto a New Debbie Macomber Cedar Cove Series

Hello there, I am onto another great book in the Cedar Cove Series. I am excited to get into this book that will maybe tell me what happeded to Gace's hubby Dan. "204 Rosewood Lane" sounds like another interesting read. It will get into more depth of the lives of Grace, Kelly her daughter, Olivia the judge, and her daughter who just married, and Jack Olivias new love. It will be a fun and interesting read.
On to another note I just purchased some other books that caught my eye at Boarders that I absolutly clould not resist while shopping. 1st is "Love Walked in" by Marish De Los Santos. It appears to be a really touching and romantic along with friendship and emotional substance.
Then there is "The Doctor's Wife" by Elizabeth Brundage. It is a debut novel and one of mystery and intrige of taking the forbibben and like the old saying, "Don't wish for something that you may find you don't really want when you get it!"
I also picked up the "The Magician's Nephew" by C.S. Lewis. The beginning to the story of "Nardia". I wanted to go back and see where it began. Just loved the fantasy story of the "The Chronicels".
The last book that I just picked up is "The Horse and his Boy" by C.S. Lewis. It is the 2nd story of the "Nardia" series. As you can tell I am hooked into this world of fantasy where animals talk and men are not really men but elves and 1/2 men and 1/2 horse. It is delightful and a bit like "Fantasia". I loved them too!!!!

********Don't Miss Out on this Special Buy!

****"Welcome to my reading blog be sure to check out
my store for beautiful handmade items for the whole family and also "slightly used" treasures in "Treasures Again"