TSS ~ Blindfold the Groundhog! I’m Protesting Winter!

The Sunday Salon.com
Okay, so I’ve had just about enough of this wispy white and cold crap.  I’m not fond of having my breath stolen from my lungs because it’s so cold it’s painful to breathe in at all.  Maybe if I just hibernate for the rest of the winter?  Gah!  I’d still have to go out to get groceries.  Oh, well… I guess it’s either run away to Florida or just suck it up.  Since I don’t have the money for a road trip, I guess that means I’m in for the sucking part.

So, January was a fairly productive reading month.  I finished off eight books, and am about half way through two others.  Since just having year-long goals only made me quick to start and race to the finish, while dropping off the face of the reading world the other five or so months, I decided to post monthly plans to keep me accountable :-)

I was surprised I hit 8 last month, but I need to get that every month if I’m going to accomplish all the challenges I’ve signed up for.  There were two books I had planned to read in January that I didn’t get to, so they go on the top of the list.  Also I have  a blog tour book, so that goes to the top, too.  And I’m doing the Lord of the Rings Readalong, so The Fellowship of the Rings is a topper, too.  LOL, heck, they’re all top books!

Currently Reading:

James and the Giant Peach by Roald Dahl ~ I’m reading it with Magggie, and we’re on page 30.

Graceling by Kristin Cashore ~ Really, I’d only picked this one up because Fire is on my ARC-alanche pile, but I’m completely wowwed by this YA fantasy book!  I only wish I’d read it sooner!

Planed Reading:

The Mom’s Guide to Growing Your Family Green by Terra Wellington ~ This is one of the two I’d meant to get to in January.  It was won in the March 2009 ER batch, so I’m needing to get it done this month.

Holy Roller by Julie Lyons ~ The second overdue ER book, I think it’s also a March 2009.

Tainted by Brooke Morgan ~ I’m down for February 24th for the TLC Book Blog tour.  I’m looking forward to reading this one, it sounds intriguing.

The Triumph of Deborah by Eva Etzioni-Halevy ~ I have a second book for a giveaway for this one :-)

Strange but True, America by John Hafnor ~ I also have a second book to giveaway on this fun book ;-)

The Fellowship of the Ring by J.R.R. Tolkein ~ I’ll probably space this out all month so I can both enjoy it to the most, as well as get it done while reading everything else.

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I also intend to keep up on my Google Reader.  I’ve done really well at keeping it under 100, which I was feeling panicky about that much until Jen and Natasha were laughing at me and wanting to get theirs below 1000.  Okay, I’ll stop stressing because there’s 20 still sitting in my reader… lol.  And I’m trying to post something everyday.  I only missed 3 days in January, and if I can get a few rainy day posts in the can, I should be able to have one everyday.  I’ve been thinking about doing some mini-reviews of books I read before blogging. 

So what kinds of post would you like me to do?  Does anyone miss Viral Video Wednesday?  What are you planning to read in February?

Chips, Dips, Memes and Quips ~ Comenzamos La Bloggiesta!

 Began at 11:05 am, Friday January 8th, 2010

Say hello to my little friend, Pedro! 

Plan.  Edit.  Develop.  Review.  Organize 

K, got my coffee… ate my sausage, egg and cheese biscuit from Hardee’s and I’m working on my country potatoes (mmm… soo much better than hashrounds!), and I’m saving the cinamon raisin biscuit for later.  My rat terrier, Missy, is full and happy after her Monster Biscuit (ham, cheese, egg, cheese, sausage, cheese, bacon and did I mention cheese? on a biscuit – It’s her new favorite from her FAVORITE restaurant), but would you believe that, after all that, she’s still bumming potatoes?  LOL..  Hardee’s is her one vice… that and cat turds fresh from the litter pan. 

My snow boots are kicked off, I’m feeling warm and relaxed, and I’m reading to get down with PEDRO!  Baila conmigo, buddy! 

So here’s what my plans are so far: 

  • I need to update my widgets!  Some of them contain info from last summer, some from last year, in general.  I need to bring them up-to-speed.
  • I’m evaluating whether or not to begin a seperate blog for The Welsh Reading Challenge.  A few people have joined (to be honest, more than I had expected, even), and there’s a wealth of titles and resources out there that I could tap.  The question is, however, how deep do I want to get in the challenge when my main reading focus for 2010 is to clear out all my ARCs by the end of the year.
  • I’m debating whether or not to chuck Viral Video Wednesday.  I’ve been lazy with it anyway, and it’s a distraction all week long when I’m really trying to focus on my reading goals.  I love it and enjoy it, but maybe set it aside at least until next year.
  • I need to update my Challenge page, my Mt. TBR inventory and ARC-alanche pages, as well as decide what to do with other pages.
  • I need to update my accepting books policy, because I really don’t want to add more books to the pile unless it’s one I’m dying for and can’t live without.
  • I need to establish a comprehensive and well-defined ratings system.  I feel the way I’ve been rating books is a bit arbitrary, and luckily I’ve found a good one to steal :-D
  • I want to visit everyone’s mini-challenges and check out what everyone else is doing in case there’s anything else I want to steal :-D

That’s about it for now.  But I may add more later.  I’ll update as I complete things! 

 Visit MawBooks‘ Bloggiesta!  Ready, Set… Let’s Fiesta! for other participants, list of mini-challenges and to link your Bloggiesta party!

Viral Video Wednesday ~ Mash-ups

Well, after a couple weeks hiatus while setting up the new computer and importing bookmarks (all my VVW ones, especially), Viral Video Wednesday is back on.  And this week’s topic, per Maggie’s request, is:  Mash-ups.  A mash-up is when you take scenes from one move and add scenes or the audio from another movie to and make it one video as if they’d been from the same show.

So, here are my vids:

First up, in honor of his opening today, I thought a Harry Potter mash-up would be perfect.  It might not entirely qualify as a mash-up… it’s more of a parody, actually… but it takes characters from 3 movies and puts them together.

And here’s another Harry Potter mash-up, this time with Pride and Prejudice.  Does this count toward my Everything Austen Challenge?

What if Harry knew that he was just a fictional character?  That he was merely a figment of J. K. Rowling’s imagination and that all his suffering was merely a device to propel a story along?  Harry Potter, Stranger that Fiction…

Now, I hadn’t realized until I watched the following mash-up that Alan Rickman and Helena Bonham Carter were in both Sweeny Todd and Harry Potter, which of course makes this next vid worth sitting through someone camming their TV.

And finally, this is similar to one of the first mash-up type video I saw (the one I wanted had been removed, poo!), and has yummy Ioan Gruffudd in it.  It tells the story of the Founding Four of Hogwarts :-)

There are thousands of mash-ups out there, if you search a movie title (usually a more popular one) and the word “mashup,” you’ll find plenty to choose from.

Now it’s your turn… What are some of your favorite mash-ups?

Next week’s VVW:  Commercials

Viral Video Wednesday and 19th Wife Winner!

Happy hump day everyone :-)  First thing’s first:  As promised, today’s the day I announced the winner of The 19th Wife giveaway.  Despite her misgivings at being the first entrant, because Mr. Random Number doesn’t like the number 1, rhapsodyinbooks is our winner!  Congrats to ya!  If you’ll send me your address, I’ll be happy to forward it to David Ebershoff so he can get that in the mail to ya ;-)

And now on for Viral Video Wednesday :-)

This week’s topic is DINOSAURS.  You can post any vid that deals in any way, shape or form with Dinosaurs, whether they be extinct reptiles or crotchety old men, or even obsolete technology.  And you know me, mine will be weird and wacky or funny.  So, on with the vids!

 

This first video is one of our absolute favorite at our house.  To give you a glimpse of our family dynamics, I’ll just tell you that, after the first time we watched it, we identified who each of them were.  The T-rex in here is Sam (my oldest, who is 16), then the middle character is Maggie (my youngest, age 10), and the non-dinosaur character is  Gwen (who is 15 today, Happy Birthday to her!). 

Maggie, btw, is physically incapable of belching… seriously, you can imagine the colic as a baby… so all gas is converted to the outboard motor, if ya knowwhaddamean.  She is proud of the fact she can fart on command, and actually takes the stance this little dino does… which is why that is her character.

And now, the real reason dinosaurs are extinct!

One of the first video game-to-movies was Super Mario Brothers.  We have the VHS of it, and watch it on a regular basis.  It’s one of our favorite movies, especially since John Leguizamo is in it and the Princess is played by Samantha  Mathis (my oldest daughter’s name is Sam, remember?).  I love the song Walk the Dinosaur originally by Was (Not Was), which was used in the movie. 

Here’s the music video from the Super Mario Brothers movie, with scenes from the movie and performed by George Clinton and the Goombas.

While watching the Walk the Dinosaur video, Sam came home from summer school and started going on about the movie, which always leads back to the best scene in the movie:  Mario and Luigi’s escape from the elevator-full of goombas. 

Dancing and music are primal, and Luigi takes advantage of that fact in this next vid clip:(the song, btw, is Somewhere My Love)

And one of my favorite TV from when I was a teen was The Dinosaurs. The Sinclairs was your typical 80’s family… 60,000,080s BC, that is.  The dad, Earl, worked for the Wesayso Corporation pushing down trees, while Fran, his wife, stayed home and took care of the baby.  Robbie and Charlene, the Sinclair teens, went to school and had typical teen concerns and attitudes.  It was a wonderfully fun show that ran from 1991 to 1994 (not long enough, IMHO)… Next stop for me is Netflix.  I’ve gotta put this one in my queue!

By request, Maggie wants next week’s VVW topic to be:  Mash-ups!  For those of you who don’t know, mash-ups are videos made with parts of two or more movies and are made to seem like one show.  Like Harry Potter video with South Park audio track, or like Hey Lady! Whatcha Readin’?‘s recent post of Buffy vs. Edward (which is what made Mags ask me to do mash-ups next week.)

So now it’s your turn… Share your favorite Dinosaur vids!

Bloggiesta ~ I Didn’t Play, but I Wish I hadda!

blogiestaI hate housekeeping. 

When I was a kid, and my mom was trying to force me to do my chores, I’d mouth off that I was going to get a maid when I grew up, so I didn’t need to learn how to do dishes or laundry or clean the toilet. 

I’m still waiting for my maid.

This past Friday and Saturday (June 19-20), Natasha at Maw Books hosted the first ever BloggiestaOlé!  The idea was to clean out the broken links, write the reviews you’re behind on, clean out the clutter, and in general bootify yer blog.

Housekeeping.  For my blog.  Blech!  Needless to say, I didn’t sign up. 

However, as I read through everyone else’s Bloggiesta updates and challenges, I found myself doing all the activities and wanting to fix up my blog, too.  I don’t wanna be the family in the trailer with four foot grass and the car on blocks while everyone else has mansions…  Wait, I wanna bootify my place, too!

So here’s some of the things I ended up doing.

1.  Updating Mt. TBR’s inventory page, adding a page for my ARC-alanche pile.  Unfortunately, I got about halfway through the TBR page when LibraryThing pooped out on me, so I’ve still got some more work on that.  It’s no where near what’s allon my TBR shelves.

2.  Stealing a page from Stella Matutina, literally, I’ve written up a review policy for Mt. TBRand linked it in my “contact me” widget on the sidebar.  I didn’t really have a policy before… not one set in stone, anyway, just a  kinda-sorta flimsy plan.  This fact is made painfully obvious by the amount of books on my ARC-alanche pile.

Other things to improve my blog, more on the cosmetic side of life:

One of the things that irk me is that I can’t find a theme that I like… I mean, really like.  The colors on this one seem a bit pale, and the sidebar and main area run together for some unknown reason sometimes, but my problem is:  I wanna knew layout, but hate all the wordpress ones, halp?  Is there a site somewhere that makes them to paste in the CSS thingy like MySpace does?

Another thing I’ve been wondering lately:  Is my site too busy?  Too many pics?  TMI?  Is it navigable and readable, or does it overwhelm and turn off?

A third, and major… in my opinion it’s big, is that there will be a book review change.  I’ve learned that blog posts look a lot different on Google Reader, and I’m beginning to see that the whole itemized list of title, author, publisher and date and page numbers… blah blah blah… is unnecessary.  Who cares what year it was published and how many pages!  It’s making the post needlessly longer.  From now on, the reviews will have the title, author and ISBN only and smaller covers.  Personally, I like the ISBN handy to grab and paste to my wishlist instead of having to sift through similar titles and other books by that author.  Smaller covers, again something I’ve learned from Google Reader, because, while the big ones with detail are pretty, they take up soOOoo much space.

Website Grader, FINALLY!  After months and months of trying to make the web grader inspect my blog, and every time the ‘tarded thing telling me my URL was invalid, I clicked the link “free seo tool” in the gray box to the right and MAGICALLY! it took the URL in the next page.  It was so frustrating to hear everyone tell all about the wonderful things they discovered through this thing, and I couldn’t even get past the front dang door!  BTW… I gots a 95 :-)

Meta whota whata?

Some of the things in the report from Website Grader made sense, but some things left me very confuzzled.  like Meta.  Meta tags.  Meta description.  I’m missin’ out on the Meta deal, but have no clue on how to get hip and get with it!  How do I add the Meta parcels?

 

File that under miscellaneous…

I took time to add the newer awards I’ve received, added the Viral Video Wednesday button, and put my 4Rchallenge button and linked them all up, so now they’re all good to go :-)

RSS feed ~ Fail?

 

  IDK… I’ve tried to use the RSS feed (thank gawd for Google Reader!), but this is what I see:

My view of an RSS feed

Is this what I’m suppose to see?  With all the code and stuff?

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So that’s where I’m at on all the “Keep the Bloggie Beautiful” stuff, though… I figure it’s probably a lot like my desk.  No sooner than I clean it all up, someone will dump a load on it and I’ll have to start over.

Now here’s where I need your help, everyone…

What kinds of things would you suggest to improve Mt. TBR?  Any help is appreciated!

Viral Video Wednesday ~ Oh, Baby!

Hello and Happy Wednesday :-)  As of this minute, Jen of Devourer of Books hasn’t delivered yet, though I’ve been keeping an eye on Twitter for the #babyk hashtags to start popping up :-)  So, in her honor, this week’s VVW topic is:

Babies!

When I think back to when each of my kids were still crawling and cruising, I remember their discovers, sometimes with a chuckle and a smile, others with a bit of panic.  My kids all had jacks-in-the-box, and I myself remember cranking the little grinder around for hours on end.  The following clip shows baby Legend  (who would name their son that?) with his first “POP” experience.

Now, I do believe Jen is having a single, but you never know… surprises might occur and she could get double the pleasure, double the fun :-)

And bath time can be quite fun, though it’ll be a few weeks before she’s giving him a bath. The following vid clip has a rather sagastically wise message: When making bubbles in the tub, don’t push too hard or you’ll make number two. Words to live by.

I leave you with this final clip. Little baby Damien stretches and yawns in a rather unique manner….

Next Week’s VVW topic: Dinosaurs :-)

Now it’s your turn: Gimme yer fav baby vid clip :-D

Viral Video Wednesday ~ The Best of American Idol is the WORST!

Good morning and Happy Wednesday, everyone :-) Last week’s VVW was about American Idol Rejects who went on to make a career. I picked Renaldo Lapuz, better known as “The Birdman,” who is having something of a singing career and fans who want to have the picture taken with him. Not the big record deal the winners get, but still… better than 15 minutes.

This week’s VVW is all about my favorite part of American Idol. Those people who shoulda been talked off the ledge. Many of them are so bad that their “friends” who told them they’re great and should go for it deserve to be shot for cruelty. I don’t know if it’s insanity, or if they’re trying for a spot on national television as one of the worst, but at least they gave it a shot.

And now, my favorite BAD American Idol auditions

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Some people who audition are more dancers than singers. Others use the opportunity as a vehicle for bigger and better things, like Leroy Jenkins Wells here. OMG, when I first saw him on TV, Mags and I looked at each other and she said, “Is he on drugs?” If I remember correctly, he was arrested a couple days after his audition aired for outstanding warrants. Now why would someone go on national TV knowing that when the prosecutor he’s been hiding out from will see it and now know where to send the po-po? CAN YOU DIG IT? (Check out the guest judge…)

We have laughed and laughed for a year or so at this next vid clip. Sammi, my oldest daughter, loves Bohemian Rhapsody. It’s the song I sing to her when she’s in a funk. No matter how bad things are for her, she’s smiling and singing along by the end of the song. The song will always have a special place in my heart. HOWEVER, Caveman Red here gives an All-Star FAIL performance of it and won a place in Simon’s heart as the WEIRDEST Audition he’s ever heard.

The next idol-wannabe made Maggie bury her head in the pillow and scream the whole way through. It’s a funny thing how people blame Simon for their own lack of talent. Evidently Keith here hasn’t talked with Renaldo, otherwise he’d know Simon is Heaven’s Chosen. :-)

I’m shocked James Lewis here wasn’t in the news for going on a work-place shooting spree after being encouraged (punked) by his co-workers into auditioning. He seems like such a sweet guy, but he might want to get some new friends. I couldn’t help staring at his mouth, trying to figure out what’s wrong with it… is it a palate issue? or is he just that tone deaf?

ROFL… here’s a Don’t Cha compilation… The auditon I was going to put here has turned out to be worthy of an EXTRA edition.

In honour of DevourerofBooks‘s upcoming blessing, Next week’s Viral Video Wednesday topic: Babies!

So now it’s your turn… what’s your favorite worst Idol auditions ever?

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