July 31, 2012

soapy sundays #2

Soapy Sundays #2
A couple of days late due to computer issues, but better late than never. :D

I know many of you out there probably aren't soap fans, but even if that's the case, chances are very high these stories will still entertain you 'cause they are hilarious!

The Bold & the Beautiful

I'm so happy to report that I gave B&B another go Thursday and Friday and actually enjoyed watching it! Yes, there's still the Hope/Liam/Steffy storyline, but after Liam and Steffy's quickie divorce, Liam and Hope are now married. However, Hope just saw a video on a laptop (not sure if it's her laptop or her mom's?) of Liam and Steffy in a very *ahem* compromising position on Liam and Hope's wedding day! I really hate seeing Hope get so worked up over Liam--he's an unworthy d-bag! She needs to just come to her senses already!

General Hospital

Now that The Revolution has thankfully been canceled, there will be foom for Katie Couric's talk show ABC is insisting on starting up. That means GH won't be canceled. I think the cancellation might have been the only way GH was saved. I say that because it sounded more and more like it was going to be canceled. For now, we GH fans don't have to sweat it!

I'm ashamed to admit how far behind I've fallen with GH. I'm clear back in April, catching up as fast as I can with my GH YouTube marathons, lol. To the inventor of YouTube...I love you!! I've got my July episodes ready to go on my DVR, so as soon as I finish April, May, and June's episodes, I can start watching GH on TV again, yipee!

I've read in Soap Opera Digest how some GH fans are upset with the number of OLTL actors who have been brought on to GH's canvas. They weren't familiar with OLTL, and I think they're worried air time for their faves will decrease. I didn't watch OLTL, but I welcome the characters crossing over. I don't think those GH fans realize this has the potential of bringing new fans over to GH, which means more viewers! The new Head Writer for GH has already promised air time for our faves will not decrease, and I like already how seamlessly the Llanview characters have been integrated with the residents of Port Charles. Here's to a long and bright future for GH!

The Young and the Restless
 Recap for the week of 7/23 to 7/27
My top 5 fave moments of the week:
  • Nick punches Billy (!!!) after he finds out Billy fired Phyllis from Restless Style due to the attempted murder charges she's facing. God that was delicious!
  • Victor catches Sharon in a lie--she tells him she's going to New York to visit her son but really goes to Kansas to stop Adam from marrying Chelsea!
  • Adam rejects Sharon and marries Chelsea!!
  • Chelsea gives Sharon an ultimatum--don't ever try to come between her and her man!
  • Jack agrees to marry Nikki next week instead of waiting a month--although he isn't able to walk yet and is freaking out that he won't be able to stand beside her at the altar. Psst, Jack! This ain't your first rodeo dude! This is your umpteenth wedding, lol. But I have a feeling you're gonna be standing next to Nikki, even if the wedding is definitely moved up to next week.
I haven't yet watched today's episode of Y&R, but I hope to be able to tomorrow. More Chelsea and Adam! I'd like to see Nick punch Billy again! Please let Jack walk again for his wedding! I hope Victor finds out Sharon's having klepto issues again! <3

July 27, 2012

review ~ poison oak summer (#1)

Poison Oak Summer (#1)

Poison Oak Summer (#1)
by AK Dawson
Published: April 24, 2012
My copy: Kindle edition
Pages: 118
Genre: YA, Mystery
Average rating: 3.75 of 5 stars3.75
My rating: 4 of 5 stars false 4 out of 5 stars

Goodreads blurb: Eighteen-year-old Lucy came to California to have fun. But within hours of arriving at the summer camp where she is supposed to work, she discovers the body of a boy floating in a nearby river. At least that’s what she thinks she sees. The body disappears down a waterfall and no-one will believe her that it existed in the first place – not even the police. Lucy decides to find out the truth for herself. Along the way, she discovers that life is stranger than she thought possible and death stranger still.

Poison Oak Summer is a mystery in three parts. This is part one.

Link to Goodreads

My Review:
I signed up for a free copy of this book to review through the Goodreads group We ♥ YA Books.

Right away from page one, I was drawn into the thick of this story. The main character, Lucy, believes she has seen the dead body of a little boy in the river near the camp where she is going to be a counselor for the summer, and the mystery begins. I love it when a book begins with a bang where the plot just takes off, and this was exactly that kind of book.

I alternated between feeling empathy and annoyance toward Lucy. She's in the U.S. and away from her mom who's back at their home in London; she was abandoned by her father; she's socially awkward; and she is too strict with rules when sometimes you have to be flexible, especially when dealing with young kids. There was also something odd to me about how much Lucy mentions her parents yet they aren't directly introduced. I just have a strange feeling that there's more to her parents than has been revealed so far.

As the book continues, I began wondering if Lucy really saw a body in the river, or if she just thought she had. She becomes obsessed with finding out about the little boy from the river, and though she's described as being extremely responsible, she keeps leaving the three young girls she's in charge of alone. I don't believe she's thinking clearly, and there's something strange about her, too.

I won't give away anything, but there are some shocking revelations. Even with those, I was left with such a cliffhanger that I've got to get my hands on the next book! It's out as well as the third one, so the great news is--no waiting to find out what happens next!

July 26, 2012

review ~ the gods among us (the divine masquerade series #1)

The Gods Among Us

The Gods Among Us (The Divine Masquerade Series #1)       
by D.C. Belton 
Published: 2012
My copy: PDF
Pages: 273 pages (Paperback edition)
Genre: YA, Fantasy, Mythology
Average Rating: 4.12 of 5 stars4.12
My rating: 4 of 5 stars false 4 out of 5 stars
Goodreads blurb: Could you forgive a god for drowning your mother, if forgiving her made you immortal?

Pallas is a friendless teen from a backwater village on a forgotten shore. Born a slave like everyone around her, people hate her clothes, her parents…especially her strange name.

Pallas doesn’t believe in the gods except to blame them for drowning her mother. But she’s forced to shelve her moody cynicism when she accidentally rescues an obnoxious cat.

Suddenly caught in a celestial war, Pallas must do the unthinkable – champion the very goddess she hates. Masquerading as a mythic princess, she convinces everyone she’s a child of Atlantis. Jealousy hounds her at every turn as she battles dangerous fanatics, a boorish prince, and a stunningly beautiful princess.

Yet nothing can save her from certain doom, when the Volcano god reaches out to slay her. For how can a mortal fight a god?

D. C. Belton creates an emotional world as elegant as it is deadly: where mortals fall prey to passionate gods and a slave proves stronger than craven nobility.
My Review:
I signed up for a free copy of this book to review honestly through the group We ♥ YA Books on goodreads.

I love the world the author has built as well as the characters he has created. The main character, Pallas, was easily likable though she can be stubborn at times. I really felt for her since she has lost her mom, was born a slave, and ends up in much danger; however, she is very strong and never feels sorry for herself. She accepts the challenges thrown her way and meets them head on, and I really admired that about her.

There were so many quotes from this book that I found to be so beautiful and poetic and have really stayed with me even after finishing reading. I absolutely flew through this book, hooked on the action and wanting to find out how Pallas gets herself out of the situations she finds herself in.

I was torn between liking and despising the cat she ends up rescuing. It's a mystery as to whether he's helping Pallas stay alive, or if he has devious plans and is secretly plotting against her. Also, it's very nerve wracking to watch Pallas pretend she is a princess and a child of Atlantis. I'm so afraid something is going to go wrong! Especially since I don't believe the cat can be trusted.

After reading this first book in the series, I absolutely have to read the next one. I've just got to find out what happens next!

July 25, 2012

WiW ~ light blog background vs. dark blog background


This is a new weekly meme hosted by Lauren from Epilogue Review. Each week there will be a something vs. something topic for you to post your thoughts about. Make sure to visit Lauren at her awesome blog, Epilogue Review, and also check out the other nifty blogs also participating. :)

Comments below with your thoughts are always appreciated! I love hearing from you guys!  :)

The topic this week: Light blog background vs. Dark blog background

This is one where I don't really have an opinion either way. :) I follow a lot of blogs, and they're all different colors with all different designs. I love each and every one of them--they're all beautifully done. I decided on bright colors for my blog because I love the color orange, it was easy to do for a newbie just starting out (ha ha), and the bright colors cheered me up (I started my blog in the bleak winter).

Either light or dark backgrounds are fine with me. :)

July 24, 2012

review ~ faelorehn - book one of the otherworld trilogy

Faelorehn - Book One of the Otherworld Trilogy 

Faelorehn - Book One of the Otherworld Trilogy
by Jenna Elizabeth Johnson
Published: April 21, 2012
My copy: Kindle edition from Smashwords
Pages: 228
Genre: Young Adult, Fantasy, Paranormal
Average rating: 3.84
My rating: 4 / 5 stars

Goodreads blurb: I never heard him come after me and even as I climbed the slope and stumbled onto our shaded back lawn, I didn’t look back. It was like the day the gnomes chased me all over again, but this time I was not escaping some horrible little creatures, I was fleeing from an incredibly good-looking guy who could very well understand me completely. I was either saving myself from that serial killer I always imagined lived down in the swamp, or I had finally gone over the deep end . . .

Meghan Elam has been strange her entire life: her eyes have this odd habit of changing color and she sees and hears things no one else does. When the visions and voices in her head start to get worse, she is convinced that her parents will want to drag her off to another psychiatrist. That is, until the mysterious Cade MacRoich shows up out of nowhere with an explanation of his own.

Cade brings her news of another realm where goblins and gnomes are the norm, a place where whispering spirits exist in the very earth, and a world where Meghan just might find the answers she has always sought.

Link to Goodreads

My Review:
I received this book for free from an ARR (author requesting review) in the We ♥ YA Books group on Goodreads.

From the very first page when the main character Meghan Elam is introduced, I was immediately pulled into her story, and that doesn't always happen so fast when I begin reading a book! She's an interesting, complex character with a very intriguing backstory that is slowly revealed as the book progresses.

At the age of two, she was found wandering the streets of Los Angeles in an extremely dangerous section of the city. I empathized with her right away, wondering what kind of parents she had who would lose their toddler in such a large city! She is found and later adopted. Her parents have five boys after adopting her, and Meghan never feels like she truly fits in anywhere. She loves her parents and her brothers but feels a bit out of place because she doesn't look like them.

I liked that conventional methods (numerous psychiatrists and medications) were attempted to relieve her nightmares, visions, hallucinations, and voices she hears. This made her situation realistic to me, and for a while, those all went away. Meghan's backstory is unique and different from other books I've read, which made the entire book so interesting and hooked me right away.

I loved Meghan and her friends! They were cool together, loyal to each other, stood up for each other against the bullies of their school, and had a lot of fun together. Meghan is strong, brave, and a loyal friend. She's very likable. The way Meghan and her friends were harassed by the bullies of their school was just appalling! I can totally relate with Meghan and her friends and kept hoping that those vicious characters would get what should be coming to them!

I liked Cade, the character who saves Meghan from several life threatening situations, somewhat. I couldn't help but think there's something shady about him, and he should have told Meghan a lot more than he did. If he had, it would've saved a lot of hardship for Meghan as well as himself. I wished he could tell her more about her parents, but I'm sure more will be revealed in the next book.

Overall, I really loved this book and flew through it. I hated having to put it down, and I can't wait to read the next book in the trilogy! I care about these characters and want to find out what happens next, especially that Meghan knows more about who she is and where she is from. Very exciting! 

July 23, 2012

review ~ fish tank: a fable for our times

FISH TANK:  A Fable for Our Times

Fish Tank: A Fable for Our Times
by Scott Bischke
Published: March 12, 2012
My copy: Paperback
Pages: 150
Genre: Fiction, Fable
Average Rating: 4.27 of 5 stars4.27
My Rating: 5 of 5 stars false 5 out of 5 stars!

Goodreads blurb: FISH TANK is an insightful allegory about the human condition, tackling issues of politics and power, limited resources and climate change.

Goodreads ~ Fish Tank

My Review:
My thanks to the author for sending me a copy of this book for review.

Wow, I don't want to sound cliche, but I absolutely and positively could not put this book down! I read it in one night and thought about the messages within the story with a smile for a long time afterward.

I knew the book was going to deal with politics and the environment but wasn't entirely sure what the plot of the book was going to be like. The ambiguity of the plot really intrigued me from the start. Once I finished reading, I thought the way Mr. Bischke told this entertaining story to get important points about serious issues across to the reader was purely clever. There were even parts where I found myself laughing.

Both children and adults can read and enjoy this book. Some of the subtleties might be lost on younger readers, but this would be a great tool to open up discussion with them about the effects human beings are having on the environment and the ways in which politics are involved in the environmental issues we as an entire planet are facing.

I know I'm definitely going to have my daughter, who's nine, read this book, and I think this will be of great value in having a way to help expand on what she already knows about the environment.

Last but not least, anyone of any political stripe can (and in my opinion will) enjoy this book. There are no leanings to one side of the political spectrum or the other, and the reader is not hit over the head with some hidden political agenda. The humorous parts of the book are poking some fun at political viewpoints, but those viewpoints are from all sides. I am confident no matter the reader's political affiliation is, he or she will love this book. I know I did! This is definitely worth reading.

July 22, 2012

soapy sundays #1

I'd like to be proactive in the cause of saving what few soaps remain. Every Sunday, I'm going to start regularly posting about the soaps I love and perhaps inspire other soap enthusiasts out there to make their voices heard, too! My posts may not always be positive, though. There are some storylines, dialogue, castings, etc. that I'd like to talk about and hopefully get my thoughts out of my system. :D

I admit that even as a die hard soap fan, there are moments when I as a viewer am thinking, 'Come on, this is completely awful! This is going to cause the end of the genre!' And I'm sure I'm not the only soap fan out there thinking some of these thoughts.

For me right now, The Bold and the Beautiful is completely unwatchable. I haven't even kept up with what's been going on for the last couple of months, but when I was attempting to watch it, I was shocked that the show had been taken over by the Hope/Liam/Steffy triangle. Where are the vets who have been on there practically since the show started that are the reason I've been watching this show most of my life? Brooke, Stephanie, Ridge, Eric??? There was absolutely no balance with storylines--everyday was about Hope, Liam, and Steffy.

I'm ashamed to admit how completely behind I am with General Hospital. Now that my two-year-old son is interested in watching T.V., I let him watch his favorite shows in the morning--Super Why, Little Einsteins, and The Wiggles. As a SAHM, I like to get my housework for the day done while a soap is on in the background. I know, it's kind of stereotypical to watch soaps while doing chores. But at least I'm not eating bon bons!! :D

On the other hand, my all-time favorite, The Young and the Restless, is on fire!! I can't get enough of Adam/Chelsea, Billy/Victoria, Nikki/Jack, and Chloe/Kevin. When Paul had to shoot his son Ricky in order to save Eden's life, Doug Davidson's (actor who plays Paul) acting was absolutely superb. I've got my fingers *crossed* he gets a Daytime Emmy for his performance!

I'm also loving the use of history from 1994, when Phyllis rented a car and tried to run Christine over because she was jealous of the bond between Christine and Danny--Phyllis's then-husband. It looks like Phyllis is going to pay for her crime now after all of these years. With the flashbacks and the fact that I remember this storyline (I was in junior high then, ha ha), I'm really looking forward to this story. I've read a few letters from fans over the years printed in Soap Opera Weekly, where they wondered if anyone was ever going to find out that Phyllis was the one who did it and if she would ever go to jail for it. That's another reason I love this story--it's awesome that other stories going on have caused this one to become front and center again. That's excellent writing, in my opinion.

If you aren't a soap fan, honestly, check them out sometime. They really are better than you might think! :D

review ~ reflection by jessica roberts

It's been a while since I've put up book reviews here. I'm not strictly a book blogger though I do have several books I've recently received for review that I'd like to put out there. They're really awesome, I highly recommend them, and I hope you'll check them out! :)

by Jessica Roberts
Published: February 17, 2012
My copy: Kindle Edition
Genre: Young Adult, Romance
Average Rating: 4.21 of 5 stars4.21
My Rating: 5 of 5 stars false 5 out of 5 stars!

Goodreads blurb: Bright, spunky Heather Robbins has escaped her small hometown and is anxiously beginning her freshman year of college. Rising above her rocky childhood, she’s found a place where good things are finally starting to happen: her own private apartment, refreshing college classes, and an intense attachment to a mysterious and rugged classmate, Nick Richards.

But when her dreamy college life turns out to be nothing more than a wonderful dream while resting in a coma, questions threaten.

Now, Heather must press forward to unlock the real past, and find the answers buried deep in her mind. What she unlocks instead is a roller coaster ride through flashbacks, embellished memories, and a whirlwind romance.

And when it’s all over and she comes face to face with the truth, will she lose everything she’s fallen in love with?

Goodreads ~ Reflection

My Review:
I received this book in exchange for a review after signing up for the ARR (authors requesting reviews) program through the We ♥ YA Books group on Goodreads.

From page one, this book was on fire!! Very quickly after I began reading, I felt a strong emotional tie to the main character, Heather. I cared about what was happening to her, empathized with her situation, and wanted a happy ending for her. In the beginning, Heather is leaving to go to college, and the action takes off from there.

Ms. Roberts told this story with natural and flowing dialogue, well fleshed out characters, excellent descriptions, and a captivating plot. I was completely immersed in trying to figure out the mystery and thought the story was written in an interesting and unique way--it alternated between Heather narrating and the author narrating for Heather. The more I read, the more I became drawn into the story.

This book really spoke to me about life, death, and the inbetween. I haven't been this moved by a story in thinking about life and death in quite a while. I will definitely be recommending this book to everyone I know and will be reading this again and again. I love books that explore the human psyche and musings of life and death and between the two.

I won't give away the ending at all but will say that with the way the book ends, Ms. Roberts has set up for the next book perfectly. I wanted more and don't know how I'm going to wait until the fall when the next book, Reaction, comes out!

July 19, 2012

my broken foot

I'm sorry I haven't been around this week! I had surgery on Monday morning on my left foot, and it went well. The larger bone that was broken was originally going to need only one pin; however, during the surgery, my doctor discovered the break was worse than what the x-ray had shown him. He ended up using two pins and a screw to fix that bone.

The other broken bone was too small for a pin and too difficult to get to anyway. He set that bone. I must admit, I was slightly nervous while getting prepped for the surgery. I've delivered two babies, but I knew the drill during those times. Plus, having a baby is different than having an injury...although there were times when I was pregnant that I couldn't help but wonder if I was injured! :D

I basically just have to stay off of my left foot completely, which is difficult since I also sprained my right foot! I'm going back to the doctor on Monday so he can check on how I'm healing. I don't know if I'll be getting an actual cast or what, but he did mention something about a boot. It's going to take eight weeks for me to heal, and even then I'll be limping, have to go through physical therapy, and have arthritis in that foot for the rest of my life. Hey, I'll be able to predict the weather!!! Cool!!

But you know what? I'm so lucky the damage wasn't worse. I could've broken both feet, or an arm and/or a wrist in addition to my left foot so I'm glad that didn't happen. And hey, I'll have a lot of time for reading and writing! :)

All I'm worried about right now is healing as soon as possible because my sister is due with her first baby in less than three weeks. No matter what, I'm gonna be there! Even if we both have to be wheeled up to the maternity ward in wheelchairs together! :D

July 18, 2012

WiW ~ Adult fiction vs. YA fiction


This is a new weekly meme hosted by Lauren from Epilogue Review. Each week there will be a something vs. something topic for you to post your thoughts about. Make sure to visit Lauren at her awesome blog, Epilogue Review, and also check out the other nifty blogs also participating. :)

Comments below with your thoughts are always appreciated! :)

The topic this week: Adult fiction vs. YA fiction

This is an easy decision for me to make--YA fiction all the way!! When I walk into the library, that's the first section I head to, and most of the books I recommend to my daughter and my friends are YA. I think YA is more interesting and exciting. I may be wrong, but it seems like there's only mysteries, romance novels, crime novels, and westerns for adults. If a YA book I'm reading has some mystery and romance in it, that's really cool, but I don't generally like mystery or romance as its own separate genre. I'm just completely drawn to YA and probably always will be! :D

Do you prefer adult fiction or YA fiction?

July 15, 2012

after my bday but before friday the 13th

BIRTHDAY Pictures, Images and Photos
I had an awesome birthday on Wednesday! I now need to update my "about me" section since I'm now thirty-one, haha. My friend and I took our kids swimming. When we came home, my dad came over to visit, and then my husband came home from work not too long afterward. I got a cheesecake like I do every year for my birthday, and it was totally delicious!

My husband gave me two gorgeous necklaces--one is my birthstone surrounded by diamonds, silver, and gold while the other is a cameo with a blue background and a mother holding a baby. I love them both! He did well, very very well!!

I'm also getting a tattoo of a very colorful record player as well as getting my cameo tattoo finished. So excited! I'll have to post some pictures of my tattoos very soon--I have four so far. Here is a picture of my cameo tattoo as it is right now:

The next day, I went to my friend's grandma's house. My friend, Jill, just had her baby three months ago, and I took my two kids to visit them. She moved from Ohio with her husband not long before their baby was born and would be going back home the next morning. Our other friend, Sarah, also came over with her two kids.

I hadn't even been there five minutes when I thought I might have left my Diet Dr. Pepper on top of my car. Jill said she could see it from where she was sitting in the living room. I decided to go out and get it because I was really thirsty.
I told my kids to stay inside, and I would be right back. I walked out onto the porch, and a combination of things came together to create "the perfect storm":
  • I was looking up at my car whereas usually I'm looking down to make sure I don't trip.
  • I was wearing Skecher flip flops (super cute--black with skulls, my fave!) which are heavier compared to regular flip flops
  • I must have forgotten about the step down at the end of the porch down to the driveway
I stepped down from the porch with my right foot in a way that caused it to twist. About to fall, I tried to stay upright and keep my balance using my arms. As I was trying to stay standing, I stepped down with my left foot, but it twisted even more than the right one. Before I know it, I'm sprawled out face down in the driveway. I was in so much pain immediately and began crying. I tried my best to get up but could absolutely could not move an inch and was too embarrassed to call out for help.

After maybe three or four minutes of trying to get up, I finally manage to crawl back onto the porch into the house. I couldn't stand up on my right foot at all, and the left foot was out of the question--it had begun swelling immediately, and I knew something was really wrong with it. :/

My friends ran to me as soon as I crawled into the house and were horrified that I hadn't called for their help. Jill grabbed a bag of ice wrapped in a hand towel, while Sarah had me prop up my left foot. We were trying to determine whether I had sprained it or if it was broken.
My friends devised a plan--Jill would drive me to the ER, while Sarah would take my kids with her to her mom's house where our kids could play together. Jill's husband would stay at Jill's grandma's house with their baby. Luckily, Jill's grandma had a pair of crutches I could borrow, and Jill's husband helped me out to my car. I felt sick and looked pale, which scared all of them and made them think I might be going into shock.

Jill stayed with me the entire time I was in ER. My dad and husband met us at the ER. My sister had a doctor's appointment to go to, or else she definitely would've been there. After multiple x-rays, the ER doctor told me I sprained my right ankle and broke two bones in my left ankle. I couldn't believe I had broken my foot!! I went to the orthopedic surgeon and found out I need surgery, which is scheduled for tomorrow. I can't wait to get it done and over with so I can get on to the healing part, lol! ;)

I'm sad the visit had to be cut short--I did get to hold the baby, and she is super cute! I can't wait until their next visit; hopefully, I'll be able to see them longer. Don't you agree I have some kick ass friends and family? My friends were right there for me all the way! I'm super lucky. My husband, dad, and sister have been totally there for me--can't forget them!! :D I have tons of offers from so many friends to come help me with my kids; it's almost overwhelming I feel so loved! <3

Wouldn't you think this would've happened on Friday the 13th? My husband said, "That is not what the doctor ordered." Ahahaha! Love his sense of humor, even when it's cheesy. :D
Well, I'm going into my surgery at 9am, and I should be done by 1-1:30pm. The surgery itself should take about an hour and a half. I'm glad it isn't on Friday the 13th! Updates to come! Wish me luck!  :D

July 13, 2012

the liebster blog award

I was given The Liebster Blog Award by Ali at Ginger-read Reviews. Thank you, Ali!! Very rad!

What is a Liebster Award?
The Liebster Award is given to bloggers who are up and coming and have less than 200 followers.
The Rules
1. Each person must post 11 facts about themselves.
2. Answer 11 questions the tagger has assigned you and develop 11 questions for the people who are tagged.
3. Tag 11 more Bloggers.
4. Tell them you've tagged them.
5. No tag backs!

11 facts about me! :D
1. I'm a quarter Native American and am so proud of my heritage!
2. My husband and I have been together for 11 years! This one fits in nicely with all of the 11s! :D
3. I very nearly was kicked out of college--I was on academic probation--but ended up earning straight A's for the two and a half years it took me to finish up school, earning my B.A. in Psychology.
4. I'm probably never gonna "grow up." I'll be forty still shopping at Hot Topic, still loving Hello Kitty, still reading YA books (YA all the way!!), and still playing video games.
5. I'm in the process of getting sleeves done (tattoos, lol).
6. Besides reading, my favorite activity is sleeping. Among my fam & friends, I hold the title "sleepingest girl in the world" (given to me by my awesome friend Morgan!).
7. In elementary school, I won several "Writing in Excellence" awards, and my mom framed every one of them, lol.
8. I named my daughter after my mom. My son was named by my husband and has the same name as my mother's brother--her brother was a twin and the twins passed away only a couple of days after they were born. The other sibling was a girl.   
9. I am part owner of the most rad horror movie collection ever!
10. I've kept journals since I was nine and still have all of them.
11. I love to laugh--the more, the better. :D

My answers to my 11 questions:
1. If there was one book you couldn't live without, what would it be?
This is a really difficult question because there are so many books I absolutely adore and wouldn't want to live without. Right now, my answer would be Before I Fall by Lauren Oliver. I couldn't get that book off my mind for a long time, which is a really good thing. :) Man I love that book!!

2. Why did you start blogging?
I want to become a writer, and my husband suggested I start a blog to get myself started. I love blogging and feel like I'm being more proactive with my goal to become an author. :) I want to write about anything and everything for my blog--my thoughts, stuff going on in my life, book reviews...I'd like to do some video game reviews and music reviews also. And of course, I want to blog about my journey in becoming a writer as well as my experiences raising two children. :)

3. How did you come up with your blog name?
Donnie Darko is my favorite movie of all time, and one of my favorite characters, too! I'm a girl fan with a crush on the character and voila! donniedarkogirl :D

4. What's your favorite word?
Tweet. It's cheerful and funny.

5. The Apocalypse is here, the world is overrun with Zombies, Vampires, Weres or some other freakish thing that wants to chow down on humanity. But before the human race is completely eradicated, you're getting the hell out of dodge and have the power to save two literary legends - don't ask me why you can only save bookish people I don't make the rules!
Who do you save? 
Ray Bradbury (rest in peace) & Stephen King

6. What "paranormal" being would you choose to be and why?
I would be a zombie, like the girl from White Trash Zombie.

7. How many books are in your to-read pile?
An embarrassing amount. Like over 1,000. :O

8. Do you usually read indie or mainstream authors?
Before I discovered goodreads from a friend of mine, I used to read mainstream authors all the time. Now that I've been a member of goodreads since August 2011, I've discovered all kinds of indie authors I might never have been introduced to were it not for that totally awesome website. From there, I began following book reviewers' blogs, and it's gone from there. I owe goodreads a lot! :) So many cool things have happened to me through there.

9. How do you choose whether or not to read a book?
I read what it's about and see what genre it is. Sometimes I check out reviews, but I'm usually afraid to read any because I don't want anything in the book to be given away.

10. If you could be any character from a book, who would you be and why?
I would be Katniss. She's strong, brave, independent, and just all around kick ass!

11. If you could teleport yourself into any fictional world, where would you go and why?
I'd go to the world of Where the Wild Things Are. I love that book, and once you find out the monsters are friendly, they seem like they'd be tons of fun to hang out with!

My nominations:
mariska's books & reviews
Candilynn Fite ~ My Writerly Musings
Book Review Diva's Blog
Scribbles from Jenn
Lexa Cain
Kissed/Bitten by books
Dawn of the Books

My 11 questions for my nominees:
1. How old were you when you started to love books?
2. What's your favorite genre?
3. Are you a member of goodreads? If so, when did you become one?
4. Do you own an ereader? Why or why not?
5. Have you read the Hunger Games trilogy? If so, did you enjoy it? Why/why not? Seen the movie or plan on seeing it?
6. For movies based on books, do you prefer to read the book first or see the movie?
7. Which classic novel have you not read yet but have wanted to for a long time?
8. If you're a member of goodreads, what's your favorite thing to do there?
9. When you read a series of books, do you like to read them back to back or take breaks with other books inbetween?
10. This question is one I answered from above. If you could be a character from any book, who would you be and why?
11. This question is also from above. Do you usually read indie or mainstream authors?

Whew, what a mental work out, lol! :D I really enjoyed listing facts about myself, answering the questions, and coming up with questions for people to answer. It was a lot of fun! I'm looking forward to my tagged bloggers' answers--this is a great way for all of us to get to know each other better. :) Congratulations everyone!! Thanks again, Ali!

July 11, 2012

WiW ~ Peeta vs. Gale


This is a new weekly meme hosted by Lauren from Epilogue Review. Each week there will be a something vs. something topic for you to post your thoughts about. Make sure to visit Lauren at her awesome blog, Epilogue Review, and also check out the other nifty blogs also participating. :)

Comments below with your thoughts are always appreciated! :)

The topic this week: Peeta vs. Gale

Wow, this is a really difficult one! I really like both of them. I didn't like Peeta at first, but he quickly grew on me. I felt like I got to know Gale first and know him better than Peeta; however, once the game started, he faded quite a bit into the background. I think he's super cute, and there's more in common between him and Katniss. I choose Gale! Sorry Peeta! You're still an awesome guy! :D

July 10, 2012

weekend update
Sunday was my husband's 30th birthday. Crazy! This Wednesday will be my 31st. Even crazier! Especially considering that he was nineteen and I was twenty when we began dating. I think last year I took turning thirty well, and it's been a pretty good year. Thirty-one should be cool.

My husband was kind of depressed, which really surprised me because I didn't think turning thirty mattered to him much. Apparently it did; however, he perked up considerably when he opened up his present from me and the kids--a new video game called Lollipop Chainsaw. It's quite a hilarious game, and he's having a great time playing it. I can't wait to play it myself!

Basically, the premise of the game is a cheerleader named Juliet heads off to school only to find hordes of zombies attacking people all over the city. And it's her 18th birthday! Good thing she's from a family of zombie hunters 'cause otherwise she'd be toast! Of course she's armed with a lethal set of pom poms and a chainsaw. Lollipops give her the energy to battle the zombies. There's a lot of zombie guts, blood splattering, zombie body parts flying, etc.

'Lollipop Chainsaw' screenshot

We love everything zombie! You name it--books, movies, video games, TV shows (hello Walking Dead!!).

'Lollipop Chainsaw' screenshot

I was so relieved and happy slashing up some zombies made my husband's day (haha) and took his mind off of the reality of his age. Just kidding with the "reality of his age" stuff! Thirty is the new twenty as I told him, plus I'll always be a year older than him. Well, a tiny bit less than a year. As in a mere three days. *evil laughter*

July 5, 2012

IWSG #2 ~ July 2012

The Insecure Writer's Support Group is the creation of Alex J. Cavanaugh to allow writers to confess any concerns or fears they have about the rollercoaster ride it is to become/be an author. This is an invaluable source for us to not only vent but also to encourage and support each other. I've met some really wonderful people who are in this group and discovered their blogs. I've read postings that have given me new ideas for my writing, and I can't recommend joining this group enough. Click on the link above for more information and to sign up if you would like to participate. There's a list of over 260 writers participating with links to their blog posts. The first Wednesday of every month, we post our IWSG entry. You can also join the IWSG conversation on Twitter using #iwsg.

I have a couple of things to confess this month. First of all, I haven't been writing like I should. Usually I write journal entries, book reviews, blog posts, Goodreads group postings, and the like. I've had a difficult time keeping up with my blog and book reviews, let alone doing any real writing for my memoir. The most shameful confession is that I haven't worked on my book. At all. And I really have no excuses. It doesn't matter how busy or not busy I am, I just have to carve time out for writing. That's it.

Though I haven't been writing my book, every night before I fall asleep, I think about how I'd like to write my memoir. The following is my list of ideas:

  • Journal entry form ~ the problem with this idea is that the dates wouldn't be accurate since I only sporadically wrote about my feelings of grief in my actual journals
  • Simple narrative from my perspective ~ this is the idea that for now seems to be what I'm going to go with. Everything I would talk about would be all from my own perspective. I can't speak for the rest of my family; I can only speak for me.
  • Third person narrator ~ Between my freshman and sophomore years of high school, I spent two or three hours a day for a week writing about the grief I had experience during junior high and my freshman year. I still have it and am planning on rewriting it. I wrote myself as the main character with a different name, and all of the events in my writing happened to Alanis (my character name). I didn't really like that I wasn't using my own voice, however, so I doubt I'll be going this route.

A couple of months ago, I entered a short memoir contest with the theme being "Overcoming Loss." I thought the contest had practically been made for me! I didn't win nor was a finalist which was disappointing, but I did generate material that I can use for my book. As I look it over, I can see why I wasn't a finalist. I think I can do much better than that piece of writing. I think another reason I didn't win was because I didn't write enough about the overcoming loss part. Sometimes it seems like loss will always be with me, taunting me to overcome it.

My goal for this month is to get to writing. How can I say I'm an aspiring writer when I'm not actively working on making it happen? Well, I'm gonna make it happen! I want my post for next month's IWSG to tell you how productive I was in writing instead of having to confess I've done not a thing.

Happy writing! <3

July 3, 2012

WiW ~ fairytale retelling vs. the original fairytale


This is a new weekly meme hosted by Lauren from Epilogue Review. Each week there will be a something vs. something topic for you to post your thoughts about. Make sure to visit Lauren at her awesome blog, Epilogue Review, and also check out the other nifty blogs also participating. :)

Comments below with your thoughts are always appreciated! :)

The topic this week: Fairytale retelling vs. Original Fairytale

I prefer fairytale retellings. I like how the familiar stories take unique twists and turns, and the different ways authors choose to change them up into something fresh and new. There are so many young adult books that serve up the fairytales you might have grown up listening to with a modern twist or even with zombies or vampires thrown in, such as Alice in Deadland. I think it's exciting to find fairytale retellings with the paranormal mixed in. I own Alice in Deadland and can't wait to read it!

Which do you choose? The original or a retelling?

Coming up this week:
  • My 2nd IWSG (Insecure Writer's Support Group) post
  • The 3rd Blog Award I won last weekend--3 in one weekend, really cool! :)