Freezing Friday Fave

I’m a Texan. Texans enjoy three things: bragging about being Texan, barbque, and hot weather. I have friends who whine about us not having a “real winter” down here, because most years you can wear shorts on Christmas Day. But the real test came this week, when mother nature dealt us two days off of work and school from ice and snow. It was terrible. Even my friends who claim to love cold weather are sick of the winter that we’ve had down here. I prefer any temperature north of 80 degrees, so I have been absolutely miserable with lows in the 20s and teens!

All that ice and frost did allow me to spend more time with my husband and daughter, who were stuck at home while the roads were icy. While I don’t watch much tv, my husband is notorious for turning on a show and then leaving the room (or sometimes, the house). Usually, when he does this, he has turned on football or some strange Netflix documentary that I don’t have any interest in. I was pleasantly surprised, however, when he turned on Atari: Game Over. The documentary is about the rise and fall of Atari, and goes in search to prove the urban legend true that the company buried “the worst game of all time,” ET. While I’m not a gamer, and am too young to have owned an Atari, I appreciate the pop culture nostalgia, and love a good urban legend.

The show features a man named Ernest Cline. He wrote the book, Ready Player One. I had heard of the book (it’s on my “to read” list), but had never heard anything about the author. He reminded me of a Zack Galifianakis character, super nerdy but in an adorable and comedic way. I decided to move Ready Player One to the top of my reading list. It was already checked out at my library, so I decided to try another book he wrote, Armada. The reviews on Goodreads weren’t great, but I noticed that everyone was comparing it to his other novel.

I’m not done with the book yet, but it is really a fun read! The premise is that the government has known for decades about an imminent attack by aliens. In order to prepare and train humanity to fight, they created video games. The main character, Zack Lightman, has played an alien war simulation game for years with his friends, and has worked his way up to being one of the top ten players in the world. When the alien war is just about to begin, Zack’s video game skills make him a top recruit to join in the fight. I can see it being a fun movie, kind of reminds me of Pixels (with maybe a little more character development).

Like I said, I haven’t finished the book yet, but I wanted to share it as my favorite thing this week. If you want to download a copy or purchase it on Amazon, you can follow this link. When you purchase via an affiliate link, I earn a small amount at no extra cost to you. Thanks for helping a stay-at-home-mom out!

What are you guys reading this week? Let me know if you’ve read Armada and what your thoughts were!

Family Matters

On Friday my little brother purchased his very first house. It’s weird watching my siblings get older and do grown up things.

Though we have the same parents, I am several years older than both my brother and my sister. We were never in the same school at the same time as students. I was a teacher when they both were in high school. Because I had my oldest child at a very young age, it felt like “the kids” were my brother, my sister, and my daughter, for 10 ish years anyway.

In the last two years, I have seen my sister married and give birth to her first child. And now, my brother buying a house. It’s surreal, but exciting to consider what else the future holds for them and our family.

Our age gap wasn’t as pleasant when I was growing up. My brother and sister are close in age and had friends in common. I was usually with the adults, because my parents friends all had kids the same age as my siblings. But now, as an adult, I am so thankful.

As a parent, I got to see my mother be a parent to teenagers and young adults. I took notes, and feel prepared for this stage in my daughter’s life. I watched my mom plan a wedding, and deal with my brother moving back home after college.

I will get the pleasure of loving on new baby nieces and nephews after I’m done having babies. After my son’s birth, I worried, “how will I ever be okay with not having any more children?” We want one more, but would that be enough? Of course it will, because my younger brother and sister can have children after I am done. And, I will be a more available aunt when my children are older. It was hard to be helpful to my sister when I, too, had an infant.

Today I’m full of thankfulness that we all live in the same small town, and hopefulness about the happy future full of nieces and nephews and cousins for my babies. What a beautiful season I’m living!

 

Friday Favorites 1/12

On Fridays, I’d like to share our favorite things of the week! We can share recipes, beauty products, foods, exercises ice cream flavors, tv shows, movies, etc. I’m excited to learn from you guys and to find new favorites through you all!

This week’s fave is in honor of our upcoming yachting trip! As I blogged about before, I am trying to get all things planned and squared away. Since I’ll most likely live in my swim suit for the week, I need some cute cover-ups. I found this one on Amazon for under $20! I think I paid $15, to be exact!

coverup

They have a ton of colors, so if I have some money left over this month, I’m going to buy a couple of more! I got the turquoise blue, but I also have my eye on the purple and the orange. It’s Amazon, so I can order it last minute and it will still get here in two days! #primeFTW

Now I am on the lookout for some cute sandals to go with! Anyone have any suggestions there?

Happy Friday, what is your favorite thing this week?

(If you’d like to purchase this cover up, you can click here to be redirected to Amazon. I will receive a small compensation for your purchase at no cost to you.)

Book Two of 2018

I just finished up my second book of the year: The Ocean at the End of the Lane. My thirteen year old had it on her to-read list and then received it for Christmas. She loaned it to me to read a few days ago. The synopsis was intriguing, and the coming of age genre, mixed with a little fantasy, sounded like something I’d enjoy.

oceanatendoflane

I like fantasy if we are talking Chronicles of Narnia, I don’t like fantasy if we are talking Twilight. Not sure how to distinguish the two?

The book started out very nostalgic and magical, but it never really slowed down. The book is just one intense scene to the next. I read somewhere (Goodreads maybe?) that this book began as a short story. It does read exactly like that. It is like a novel-sized (albeit a short novel) short story. When I look at it like that, I liked it. When I look at it as a novel, I don’t like it.

The writing is fantastic, I would like to explore more of Neil Gaiman’s books. But I needed more to the story. I did read that there may be a movie coming soon. So if you’re into reading the book before the movie comes out, you may want to pick up a copy. It is an easy, and quick, read. If you’ve read it, I’d love to hear your thoughts on the book!

If you haven’t read the novel, you can grab a copy by clicking here to order from Amazon. It’s currently pretty cheap at just under $7!

(When you purchase from an affiliate link, I earn a small percentage…at no extra cost to you.)

Now to decide what to read next…. What is the last book you read, and did you love it?

Vacation, All I Ever Wanted..

I have an almost-two-year-old. My husband and I have not been away alone together since he was born. That sounds pretty dramatic. For almost two whole years, we haven’t left the baby (I refer to him as the baby, but he is a toddler) overnight. It doesn’t feel that long, we’ve been out together plenty, but never away. Overnight. But, in a few months, we are heading off for seven whole nights away!

I am excited. I am nervous. I cannot wait. I dread it.

Being a mom is hard! A is not a particularly hard baby, but he is pretty finicky about a schedule. If the schedule is off at all- he isn’t sleeping. If he isn’t sleeping, he’s cranky. When we scheduled this trip, he was about 16 months old, and I thought, “that’s so many months away, he will be so much older then.” He is older, but he still seems so young!

I’m trying to busy myself with my “to pack” list and my “to see” list. We are going to try to go carry-on only, so the challenge of how to pack is occupying my mind. I’m thankful to say that I’m at about 70% excited and 30% completely-over-the-top-worried. Those numbers were reversed just a couple of weeks ago.

When I clean up the kitchen at night, I look forward to a whole seven nights where I won’t be cleaning a kitchen. But then I think about my in-laws’ and my parents’ respective kitchens being a mess – messier than normal – because of my children! Okay, I don’t really worry about the mess caused by my son, but I do worry about the emotional mess they’ll be in if he doesn’t sleep!

My teenager is a whole other set of emotions. I feel so guilty when it comes to leaving her. I feel terrible that we will be missing one of her band concerts (we didn’t know it existed when we scheduled the trip). And then I feel for my parents for having to take a probably-sleep-deprived toddler to a band concert. She assures me that she does not mind at all, and that I should not even think about it. But that just makes me feel even guiltier!

I’m a mess, y’all! BUT I am incredibly thankful that this is my dilemma for the next few months!

Oops!

You guys today was a mess!

It actually started at 12:00 am when I was still awake. I laid there and tossed and turned and thought about everything that I can’t control but still worry about. I think (according to my fitbit) that I was about by 1:00 am, but at 2:00, my toddler was awake. He has been off schedule since Christmas Day, and I’m looking forward to winter break being over so that we can get back into our groove (and sleep)!

Anyway, I rocked him for about thirty minutes and told myself that I will surely get to sleep late in the morning, but he was up, bright and early this morning.

So, I’m sleep deprived. And sluggish. And I swear, A knows it! He takes advantage by pulling everything out, and down. I am not sure what we are going to do about the dining room table. If anything is on it, he pulls it down. How do you mommas keep this from happening?!

Next at breakfast, dishes break. Dishes break, glass is on the ground, and a toddler is running around (covered in oatmeal, I’ll add). But I got it cleaned up without anyone stepping on glass shards, and I didn’t like the dishes that broke anyway.

We went to HEB curbside (HEB is a Texas based grocery store. It is THE best grocery store, according to any Texan). I’ve been using curbside, where you order your groceries online and they bring them out to your car, for the last several weeks. It really helps me budget, even at a $5 + 3% personal shopping fee. Think about when you online shop for clothes. Don’t you notice how much you’re spending with the shopping cart icon? Curbside works the same way. I fill up my “cart” online, then if my bill is $150, and I need it to be less, I remove anything I don’t need.

Anyway, they always bring complimentary cookies to the car while they load your groceries. Except today, they didn’t. I guess they forgot, but my toddler kept saying “TOOTIE” (cookie). And in my mind, I kept saying “cookie.” Blaming it on sleep deprivation, but I was pretty sad about the lack of cookies.

Then I found a major typo in the publication that I am in charge of for an organization that I belong to….AFTER I submitted it and put it out in the world.

Needless to say, I’m a little scared to turn on the stove to make dinner in a few minutes. Hope your day was tamer than mine!

 

Queen Bette

I have one brother. He is SUCH a little brother, that he never quite grew out of that I-want-to-aggravate-you-every-moment-that-I-am-with-you behavior. Do they ever, though? Anyway, he is notorious in our family for giving books as Christmas gifts. He waits until Christmas eve, then goes to Barnes and Noble (the Amazon-lover in me is crying inside) and knocks out everyone’s gift there. For a little brother, he is actually pretty great at picking out books.

This year, he gifted me Miss D and Me: Life with the Invincible Bette Davis, by Kathryn Sermak.

missdandme

You can click here to purchase Miss D and Me on Amazon

I just love old movies, and Bette Davis is the queen! She worked until her death, defying her waning health, family troubles, and even a stroke. She truly was invincible.

I was a little worried that I wouldn’t enjoy it because it is about Bette Davis’ last ten years of life, and I’d much rather read about her prime. I was enthralled with the beautiful story about a friendship that formed between the author, Bette Davis’ assistant, and the star.

I think my Goodreads reading challenge is off to a good start! I challenged myself to read 15 books this year, and Miss D and Me was a great one to begin with!

Let me know what you thought about the book after you’ve read it!