Saturday, February 26, 2011
I'm always amazed at how nuts people go over what they perceive is a sale. I wanted to know if the same thing was happening at my local Borders store. Since I found myself with a few minutes to kill before seeing a movie today I popped in.
We are trained to flip out over a series of trigger words to the point where without those words, without that perception of a deal (but not an actual deal) people don't spend. I can't believe that all the people there buying today would be doing so if they literally could not afford to. They have the money now, why didn't they have it a few months ago? Because we weren't having a liquidation sale then.
First of all, parking was a mess. I parked at Longhorn Steakhouse and had to walk over.
Sure enough, once inside I found that the discounts were 20-40% off. 40% seemed to only apply to magazines and comic books, although I didn't walk the entire store to be certain of that assumption. Books were definitely all only 20% off. I went to the YA section and was amazed to find the shelves almost completely wiped out. No Sarah Dessen. A couple Meg Cabot. None of the books on my Amazon wish list were left, near as I could tell. A $7.99 book was only $1.59 less. I wouldn't have bought one even if they did have something I wanted.
$12 for Eat, Pray, Love? I have that Nickel & Dimed book that I bought for a class at an overpriced student bookstore for $9 several years ago!
It's hard to tell but the line was wrapped around the store. I couldn't believe it.
So after the movie I went over to Half Price Books. I bought 2 books from the Uglies series by Scott Westerfeld for$2.48 a piece. No telling how much someone at the Borders liquidation probably paid for them this week.
What saddens me about the loss of two Louisville Borders locations are that they were the company that bought out Hawley-Cooke (those unfamiliar can read about HC HERE and HERE). Hawley-Cooke wasn't perfect and certainly made its fair share of business mistakes when internet giants like Amazon arrived on the scene. But I was terribly sad to see it go. I can't say the same about Borders.
Friday, February 25, 2011
But really, I'm sharing out of love. These are some awesome colors.
From left to right:
Go My Own Way -- Sephora by OPI
Malia -- Zoya
Swept Off My Feet -- Essie
Havana Dreams -- Sephora by OPI
Barbie -- Zoya
Looks Like Rain, Dear -- Sephora by OPI
I did the Zoya deal where you got 3 free polishes and only had to pay shipping and I've been pleasantly surprised. My other Zoya polish is a summery orange so it's not in regular rotation yet, but the above two are the perfect Spring pink and purple.
Thursday, February 24, 2011
Wednesday, February 23, 2011
Tuesday, February 22, 2011
"The aurora is all off in here. You need to flung shui this space."
After reading a tagline on a murder mystery novel, "The ellipses at the end stand for dun-dun-dun, don't they?"
"If I say I'm hungry at 9 o'clock at night I'm not really hungry, I just want McDonalds."
Monday, February 21, 2011
I have a slight fascination with polygamist Mormons. Big Love, Sister Wives, Oprah or Dateline exposes on the Jessop clan. I'm there. When I saw this book on a bestseller list it immediately appealed to me. I mean, obviously.
It's with great sadness that I admit I didn't love it. It was okay. Not great. Not horrible. Just okay. And so freakin' long. After 400 pages I was really ready for the story to wrap up. 600 pages was seriously pushing it.
So there we have it, my first meh book on my quest to 52 in 2011.
Sunday, February 20, 2011
Thursday, February 17, 2011
For a split second last year I tried to be one of the those anti-e-reader people. You know the ones. But I love real books. I love cracking them open. I love smelling them. I love collecting them. I like seeing them on my shelf. (See, The Frenemy: How to Read a Book for an example of the haterade.)
And then my mother convinced me that what I really needed in life was an e-reader. In a roundabout way that went something like this:
"Hey I'm getting an e-reader for Christmas. You want one?"
"But look how neat they are. And pretty. And you love technology. Why don't you download a book on your iPhone?"
"Yeah, maybe later."
"Omg, I need a Kindle!"
After reading several books on my Kindle I decided this weekend to run by the library. I had a few dollars in my purse and wanted to get my late fees taken care of. (I unfortunately run up a late fee balance of astronomical amounts at least once a year. I'll never learn to return things on time.) And since I was there it made perfect sense to succumb to the temptation of MORE BOOKS.
Mostly because I wanted to see if I used to be right. If all the people professing their undying love for real books were right. Did the angels sing when I opened a real book? Maybe I couldn't remember that part. Was the smell of a book that intoxicating? Did I have some visceral reaction to the sound of a fresh hardback cracking that I couldn't recall?
I hate to disappoint the e-reader haters but I didn't have any reaction at all. I cried when something sad occurred in The Queen of the Big Time, the real novel I'd decided to read. But I cried when I read the something sad in Mockingjay on my Kindle. The heavens didn't part, angels didn't sing, the smell didn't mesmerize me. The only difference was how I held the book.
What I think we've forgotten is that it is not, nor should it be, about the paper itself. A book is only a vessel. The words are what matters. It doesn't matter if I'm flipping through paper pages, or clicking a button to read some more e-ink words. Either option transports me to Hogwarts, Roseto, Pennsylvania, or District 12. How you choose to have those worlds delivered isn't what matters.
You don't want an e-reader? Fine. But I think we should stop dissing folks who do. Who cares how anyone wants to read a book? We should only be thrilled that they want to. Period.
Wednesday, February 16, 2011
I really haven't decided how I felt about this one yet. Something about it is lingering with me.
"Maybe a first love exists to reaffirm the best parts of yourself, the choices you made when you didn't worry about the consequences. Maybe a first love exists to remind you to be brave in the moment, to stand up for your feelings, instead of shrinking back in the face of potential loneliness."
I remember trying to read this book in high school and getting distracted or something. For whatever reason I returned it to the library having barely ever cracked open the cover. But since I've been on a YA kick lately I'd really focused recently on a list from Bitch Magazine which named 100 YA books for the Feminist Reader. Sloppy Firsts is #58. Amazon had a great deal on all five books in the series and bam, here we are.
I'll admit it took me a while to get into this one. But that's probably less of the book's fault and more of my special brand of April malaise that creeps in every few weeks. For a while I seriously wondered why it was on tons of lists of the best of the best of YA lit. And then I realized as I got to know her it's because Jessica Darling is a complete gem of a character even if the plot is slow going. I'm looking forward to book #2.
"You can only be in a bad mood for so long before you have to face up to the fact that it isn't a bad mood at all; it's just your sucky personality."
"Girls will get together just to get together. Guys need an activity as an excuse. Otherwise it’s too homo for them to handle."
Tuesday, February 15, 2011
It was a little high.
Then she checked my pulse.
The doctor came in.
Checked my ears, glanced at my throat, looked at my pupils.
Said my heart was beating a little fast.
"Do you drink caffeine?"
"Are you nervous?"
"Is the pope Catholic?"
They must revoke your sense of humor in med school.
Thursday, February 10, 2011
- My hair is split end city right now. Like, woah. Everything I've read says I need a trim, but I just got a cut not too long ago. And it's splitting closer to my scalp. Is there any miracle cure out there beyond a hot oil treatment? Magic shampoo and conditioner?
- Angry Birds Seasons has a Valentine's Day version. I love it.
- Florida Strawberries have arrived at all of the local grocery stores! This makes me so happy.
- I was able to put one of my student loan payments on hold for three months. HUGE RELIEF, you all, huge relief. I feel like I can breathe now.
- I've slowed down on my reading. But now I simply must plow through the current book I'm on so I can get to Delirium by Lauren Oliver.
Wednesday, February 9, 2011
What I've Learned So Far
I definitely do not enjoy on the spot job offers. Last week I got an offer for a position with a company I do enjoy. I posted about it here, but I pulled the post. It's still up on google reader, so some of you might have seen it. Things went swimmingly and I was feeling rather great about the prospect. Until, in the hours and day that followed, the hiring manager dropped some unsavory bombshells. The pay was only .75 more than minimum wage, and the hours were 20 per week instead of 30. The amount of travel, the days per week, and the wages made it nearly impossible for me not to walk away from the offer. The money would barely put a dent in my bills. The only downside is that you can't stop the sense of dread that comes with turning down a job offer when you're told jobs are so hard to come by right now. That's the unfortunate part.
Apply for jobs you know you're going to want. One of the reasons I didn't accept a cashiering position was the fear of getting stuck doing something I hated and that wasn't fulfilling just because it was a paycheck. I've become a lot more picky when it comes to submitting my resume since a month and a half ago. Money is important, but so is my sanity.
Be open to new experiences. I've long considered various graduate school programs but how will I ever know if going that route is right for me unless I get some experience in the fields that interest me? That's why this week I signed up to substitute teach. The idea frightens me, only because I don't know what to expect and kids can be slightly terrifying. But I can't think of a better way to figure out if I enjoy the classroom setting than to sub a few days a week for extra money while I apply for full time jobs and figure things out. My training is tomorrow. Wish me luck!
Don't be afraid to expect certain things, or to set boundaries for searching. I've made a wish list. The job I want: must be full time, must be within a certain salary range (i.e. the amount I need at minimum to survive) and it must be within specific driving distance. I feel like this is an acceptable list of needs.
Realize that these things take time and stop beating yourself up about it. This is the hardest lesson to learn. I didn't pick a degree like nursing in which I have one option for employment and there are a million jobs open. I'm slowly defining my own career. This takes time. I can play what ifs about my past choices all day long. But that doesn't help me or anyone else. Accept my path and work hard daily. For me, it's making sure I submit a resume at least once a day. Or that I work on a cover letter. Or make follow up calls. And most of all it means to check myself, every few days, to make sure I'm not spending too much time wallowing in self pity.
Saturday, February 5, 2011
A list of the names currently tickling my fancy.
- if my name wasn't April I'd list June here because I love it
I think Eleanor Louise would make a lovely girl's name. Or Jane Louise. Or Camilla Louise.
- Julian (my grandfather's middle name)
Wednesday, February 2, 2011
Get some of these Sister Schubert rolls, cook them and while their fresh out of the oven mix up some soft butter with a little sugar and spread it on top of the rolls. You'll have warm sweet rolls like O'Charleys to go with your soup. DELICIOUS, and I'm not just saying that.
4 cups of water
1 package of frozen cubed hashbrowns
5 chicken bullion cubes
1/2 small onion diced
5 strips of bacon
1 tsp pepper
1/2 tsp garlic powder
1/2 cup of milk or heavy cream
18 one inch cubes of velveeta, or a few handfuls of a cheese of your choice (I add three good sized slices of velveeta cubed up to mine, feel free to play with how cheese you do or don't want your soup.)
Fry the bacon in the stockpot you'll be making the soup in. Remove the crispy bacon but leave the drippings in the pan. Add the diced onion to the drippings and cook until almost translucent. Add the water, bullion cubes, and potatoes along with pepper and garlic powder. Cook until the potatoes are tender. Lower heat just slightly and add half a cup of milk or heavy cream. Drop in the cubes of cheese and stir until melted. Crumble up the bacon you cooked and add to the soup. Serve!
My brother's favorite, and most requested, meal is this soup. I used to make it by cutting up my own potatoes. Which meant I dreaded making it every single time. Don't bother, the frozen potatoes are just as good if not better. Another time saver is to not bother with the onion and just sub in onion powder. And it's important to note that when you add the potatoes to the water you're going to think it's not enough water and you'll be tempted to add more. DON'T do it. The potatoes cook down and everything turns out perfect.
Tuesday, February 1, 2011
The Truth About Forever by Sarah Dessen
This book you guys. THIS BOOK. So swoonworthy.
I loved this one. I've previously read a couple Sarah Dessen books but I'm seriously wondering why in the world I haven't gotten around to all of them. This review from Forever Young Adult (My new favorite blog, btw. Their tagline says it all: for YA readers who are a little less Y and a bit more A.) was what prompted me to buy this one. A decision I don't regret AT ALL. I love her suggestion of Taylor Kitsch as Tim Riggins as Wes. Friday Night Lights fans will get that reference and swoon like twice as much while picturing Wes as Riggins, I swear.