Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Cozy Mystery Challenge

I have decided to participate in the Cozy Mystery Challenge. I am choosing to read six The Cat Who... books. we recently started listening to them at work in audiobook form and I am really enjoying them. they are feel-good books that never fail to brighten my day. since we haven't been listening to them in any particular order, I am not sure which ones I will be reading. I do know, however, that the first one will be The Cat Who Could Read Backwards because it is on its way here from amazon.com as we speak. well, as I type anyway. I will fill in the list as I go along, so check back here to track my progress.

1. The Cat Who Could Read Backwards
2. The Body in the Library
3. The Cat Who Knew Shakespeare
4. Peril At End House
5. The Cat Who Dropped A Bombshell
6. The Sittaford Mystery

Classics Challenge

I have decided to participate in the Classics Challenge. I'm going to have a go at the Classics Feast, which consists of reading six classics. you can see the specific rules - and sign up for yourself - if you click on the link. here are the books I intend to read:
I'm not sure of the order in which I will read these, but I think Tess or Emma will probably be the first down. I'll link my reviews back to this entry, so keep checking back to track my progress.

Monday, March 29, 2010


I join the birthday club of jsut about every eatery I've ever visited. as a result, my inbox has begun to fill with coupons. so far I have received the following coupons:
looks like I've got a lot of eating to do this week. I'm going to suggest Smokey Bones for wings this week, so that will hopefully take that off the list. I drive past Rita's pretty often, so that shouldn't be difficult - we can just pick some up on the way to somewhere else. I think I would like to have Cold Stone for breakfast on Saturday, seems like a nice way to start my birthday. I am not sure about Buca, though...

for my birthday, my parents are taking me to Red Robin, my restaurant of choice this year. after that, I am forcing those guys to drive all the way out to the White Palm Tavern. I am really excited to try the pretzella sticks. then I imagine we will go back to SteveMikeBobby's to continue the revelry. and then I will be an old woman. 26 years old. goodness.

in the course of browsing the internet on Saturday, I stumbled into the wonderful world of book blogs. I don't know how I have missed this blissful world, loving books as I do, but somehow I had. it seems that these magical blogs run book reading challenges that other readers can participate in and enjoy. I have decided to sign up for two of these challenges: the Cozy Mystery Challenge and the Classics Challenge. tune in tomorrow for my challenge entry entries!

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Sunday Stealing: The 35 Questions X 2 Meme: Part One

Sunday Stealing: The 35 Questions X 2 Meme: Part One

1. How far away is the last person you kissed?
Two rooms away.

2. Has someone ever told you they would be with you forever?

3. Last person you were in a car with?

4. Any plans for tomorrow?
Work followed by anime night.

5. How long does it take for you to take a shower?
Eh, between 8-15 minutes.

6. Best friend or close friends?

7. Is tomorrow going to be a good day?
It better be...

8. Did you kiss anyone friday?
Yes, three someones.

9. Ever thrown up in public?
Sure did - more than once, I imagine.

10. What's on your mind RIGHT NOW?
Outback Steakhouse, where we are going for lunch.

11. Who was the last person you talked to?
Chris again. Can't get away from that guy.

12. What is the WORST subject they teach at school?
Well, I really hated science, but I think phys ed is really the most useless.

13. Have you seen anyone lately that you don't get along with?
Nah, not in about a week or two.

14. What is your favourite colour top to wear?
Green or black. Hard to choose.

15. Have you ever been in a car accident?
Yes, I have been in a few.

16. What's the closest thing to you that's green?
My robe - I am wearing it.

17. Where would you like to be right now?
Somewhere warm.

18. Write down some lyrics to the song you're listening to?
The next time that I caught my own reflection,
It was on it's way to meet you,
Thinking of excuses to postpone.
You never look like yourself from the side,
But your profile did not hide,
The fact you knew I was approaching your throne.

With folded arms you occupy the bench like toothache
Saw them, puff your chest out like you never lost a war.
And though I try so not to suffer the indignity of a reaction
There was no cracks to grasp or gaps to claw.

Crying Lightening by Arctic Monkeys

19. How many dogs do you have?
I do not have any dogs. I have two cats, a snake, a lizard, and a millipede.

20. Is anything bugging you right now?
My noisy computer.

21. Is life going right for you now?
Eh, I really can't complain.

22. Is there someone you care about more than yourself?
Of course.

23. What made you laugh today?
My cat trying to force me out of bed to feed her.

24. What was the last movie you watched?
Inside - it's a really gross french horror film.

25. Whats the last conversation you had about?
Going out to lunch.

26. What were you doing at 7:00 this morning?

27. Do you like your hair long or short?
Long, mostly.

28. Do you want to see somebody right now?
Nah, I'm good here by myself.

29. Do you like the rain?
I sure do, especially in the summer time.

30. Did you have a valentine this year?

31. The last person you kissed needs you at 3 am, would you go?
I would, though I probably wouldn't have to go very far.

32. Would you honestly say you'd risk your life for someone else?

33. Honestly, if you could go back 1 month and change something would you?
I can't really think of anything, no.

34. How do you feel about boys smoking?
I wish they would not, but it doesn't gross me out or anything.

35. Could you see yourself with someone forever?
Yeah, I'd say so.

Saturday, March 27, 2010


today my mum and sister came over to help me dig a vegetable garden. it was a lot of hard work - I got a blister! so far I have planted sugar peas. I also intend to plant green beans and cucumbers. I only want to plant vegetables that I will actually eat, which isn't many. I should probably plant some tomatoes and then sell them...

Friday, March 26, 2010


today it has been 11 years since my cat, Virgo, died. I have been better about it in recent years, but it is getting to me more than usual this year. I think it is a combination of things, namely the cat that showed up in my yard last week and the fact that the days of the week lined up the same as 1999 this year. like, he died on a Friday and it is a Friday now as well.

I am bringing his memorial rock home from my parents' house and intend to give it a place of honor in my new yard.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

1st Blogoversary!

wow, can you believe it has been a whole year of (somewhat) consistent posting? I sure can't! and boy, what a year it has been! here's to another entertaining year of my pointless ramblings!

I intend to start being more consistent, but let's not get our hopes up too high, okay?

Sunday, March 21, 2010

piece of cake

this has been a pretty good weekend, so far. I mean, it sucks that Chris had to work, don't get me wrong. but otherwise, it's been great.

Friday Chris drove me to work so that he could pick me up and we could head straight to the pet expo. once we got there, we were saddened to find a distinct lack of tiger salamanders. there is a good reason for this: apparently, they are not legal in PA. hmph. we decided instead to get a snake. I have always wanted a snake and, as Chris brought up, they are more easily worn on the finger. they have this advantage over a salamander. so now I have a pre-engagement okeetee corn snake. she doesn't have a name yet. I suggested Orange or Snakey, but Chris thinks these are both less than creative and that I can do a better job. so I am still thinking. I'll have pictures as soon as she comes out of her hiding cave. hopefully this happens soon, she's been sitting in there since Friday night. perhaps she will come out if I get her a branch to climb.

Saturday we went to Queen City for breakfast. I got the silver dollar pancakes. when Chris went to work, I watched the Office until my parents came to pick me up. we went to the pet expo, which was a lot of fun. I would like to make it through just once without crying over something that makes me think of a dead pet. just once! then we went back to my parents' house and made pizzas (and ate them). they were delicious.

today I went to Barnes & Noble with my co-worker. we both brought our laptops. I have always wanted to take my laptop to a place with free wifi and hang out - and now I have! I had a really good time. we were there for over three hours!

now I am sitting in bed with Morgaine, eating dried cranberries and hummus and pita chips, browsing the internet, with the windows open. I am very relaxed and happy. maybe I will take a nap.

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

reads twilight

so the insurance company tells us that it is the mortgage company's fault this time. apparently, the mortgage company got the same notice in the mail that we did. so the mortgage company sent them a $348 check out of our escrow account. but since the insurance company didn't actually need that money, they send it back. to us. so now we (that is to say, Chris)have to call the mortgage company and get that money back into escrow. I say it is still the insurance company's fault, if somewhat indirectly, but whatever. I'm just very fed up with the whole situation.

I tried to install Office 2000 on my laptop last night, but it looks like Office 2000 and Vista don't get along very well. I guess I am just going to have to break down and buy a copy of whatever the newer Office is called. 2007? I dunno. seems like a huge rip-off to me.

Tuesday, March 16, 2010


I made dinner last night! I made garlic chicken & wine. basically it is some chicken that is cut up and browned in olive oil. following me so far? then the chicken is taken out of the pan and some garlic is browned in the leftover chicken olive oil. then you put the chicken back in and sprinkle it with a little flour. then you add a whole bunch of white wine (I used about a third of a bottle for two chicken breasts) and you let it simmer for about 20 minutes. then you add some milk (I used about a third of a cup) and let it simmer for another 20 minutes. then it is finished and delicious.

the picture doesn't really do it justice. I suggest you go ahead and make some for yourself.

A-Z Pet and Pond never called Chris back , so he called them. they said to call back in December, that they couldn't order any until then. DECEMBER? what is up with that? so I guess we're going to try the Pet Expo this weekend. The reptile show is going to be there this year, so that's pretty convenient. hopefully we will have better luck there. otherwise I am not really sure what we will do.

oh, and guess what came to my house in the mail yesterday - a check from the insurance company! I am not sure if I mentioned this before, but Nationwide insurance, who suggest you avpid at all costs, can not seem to actually insure us. it all started in December when they sent us a check and declared that we needed a railing on the side porch or they would cancel our insurance. we were pretty confused, since there is already a railing on our side porch. we went to the insurance lady and told her that, and she said they would get it straightened out. simple, right?

no, not at all. we got another check in the mail in mid January. Chris called, they said it was a mistake, that we should just shred the check and not worry about it. a few weeks later we got a statement in the mail telling us that if we did not pay $348 (the exact amount of the checks, strangely enough...) by February 13th, our insurance would be canceled. whaaa?? so Chris called and, over the course of two weeks, got it (supposedly) figured out. and now we have received a third check. marvelous. you know, I would think that an insurance company would be able to manage to keep us insured. what a crazy idea, right? so Chris called and left them a message, but as of yet we have not heard back from them. I want to go over there and give them a piece of my mind. a very large, angry piece. and tell them that if this is not fixed by the end of the week, we will be taking our business elsewhere. bunch of incompetent morons over there.

Monday, March 15, 2010

dinty moore debacle

it was a pretty productive weekend, though maybe not the most exciting weekend possible.

after work we went to A-Z Pet and Pond. we had called on Thursday, after searching every pet store in the county, and had been told that they had a tiger salamander and that they would hold it for us. as you can probably imagine, there was not a tiger salamander waiting there for us. shocking. so we drove all that way for nothing. they told Chris that someone would call him on Monday (today) about ordering one. bah. our next stop was Outback with Kim and Dustin. I got the Roasted Filet Focaccia Sandwich. holy crap was it delicious. like, seriously. go get one right now. I also got two margaritas. they were only $3.75 each - how could I pass that up? we got home around 10:00 and went almost immediately to bed because we are old people.

we woke up around 5:30 on Saturday morning, wide awake. luckily, we were able to go back to sleep for a few more hours and woke up for good around 8:30. we tried to make pancakes for breakfast, but both of our pancakes mixes had gone bad. so we gave up and went to the wyomissing diner for their breakfast buffet. it was delicious and amazing and I will definitely go there again. when we were done with breakfast, Chris went to stupid magic and I went to the Park City Mall with Kim and Dustin. Kim and I got bubble tea again, but Dustin was too much of a wuss to try it. we went to Long John Silver's for lunch, which was nice. I haven't been there in years! Chris was still at magic when we got back, so I went to my parents' house to do my taxes and eat dinner. when Chris finally did get back from magic, he wasn't feeling very well. so we stayed home and watched tv and went to bed around 11:30. because we are old people.

it was incredibly windy that night. so windy, in fact, that the carpet blew right off of our side porch!

Sunday we went grocery shopping. we have switched to an every-other week system and it has been working out pretty well so far. we made up a meal list and everything. there was a bit of a situation when we couldn't find the beef stew, but otherwise things went smoothly. after groceries, we ordered some sandwiches and got to work cleaning the house. you see, I have a bit of a... hoarding problem. if I am not careful, Piles start to accumulate. they have been doing so since January, and it had gotten to the point that both of our living room chairs were covered in Piles, as was the kitchen table. and there was one next to the sofa as well. Chris, who had promised to keep an eye on me and my little problem, finally put his foot down and said that it was time to do something about them. so I cleaned them up. and we washed the dishes and did laundry as well. it took several hours and scared the cats quite a bit. I think they were afraid we were planning to move again. when we were finished, it was around 7:30. we finished God of War II, which Chris had been playing through again so that I could watch and be up to date when God of War III comes out.

oh, and by the way, I moved two swords and a battle axe up to the bedroom. Now I am ready should there be any intruders. so probably don't break into my house.

Wednesday, March 10, 2010


so last night, a few minutes before midnight, there was a really loud noise. I had been sleeping, but it (combined with my terrified cat digging her claws into my back) woke me up in an instant. at first I thought it was thunder, but I knew there weren't any thunderstorms in the forecast. I also thought it might have been a truck, but then I remembered that I don't live on a very truck-friendly road anymore. I decided at that point that an investigation may be in order. I tried to roust Chris from bed, telling him that I was going to go look for burglars that could kill me, but he didn't seem to care much. he just pulled the blankets over his head and told me to have fun.

I grabbed the exacto knife from the art room (since all the major weaponry was downstairs - poor planning on our part) and started down the stairs, Morgaine following close behind. the kitchen was clear, no broken windows or doors kicked off of their hinges. so I flipped the living room light.

...one of our bookshelves collapsed. it fell sideways onto a table with a lamp, which then fell onto Chris' computer. it also knocked Mutz's living room water bottle over, so the floor was soaking wet as well. I went back upstairs to tell Chris what had happened. I went back down to start fixing the terrible mess, but Chris never showed up. I had to go back up there again to tell him he needed to come down and help me before I killed him. we eventually got all the books into orderly stacks and righted the table, but the lamp was broken. I am pretty sad about it, I've had that lamp for ten years. we've been through a lot, that lamp and I.

so I guess "buy a bookshelf" has moved up the priority list a bit.

but then I couldn't get back to sleep because I was convinced that we had had an earthquake and that was why to bookshelf had fallen apart. I'll be honest with you, all these giant earthquakes have got me a little scared. I am afraid the end is coming. so I spent most of the rest of the night worrying about earthquakes and the end of the world.

the first thing I did when I woke up this morning was check the internet and the news to see if we did indeed have an earthquake, but it seems we did not. I guess it was just a crappy bookshelf.

Sunday, March 7, 2010


this has been one of those weekends when it feels like everything is right in the world. if I could plan my perfect (realistic) weekend, this weekend was very much what it would look like. here is the rundown:

on Saturday I woke up around 10:00. we were ready and out of the house by 11:45 so that we could get to Chris' bank by noon. after that we went to Boscov's to look at a desk he decided not to buy. then we went to A-Z Pet & Pond. we saw lots of cool things (including some sharks). Chris broke down and told me about the surprise he has been planning for me - a full tiger salamander set-up for my office! it is my very own pre-engagement salamander. then we went to the mall where we ate delicious food court food. then I bought some $50 jeans (anyone who know me will realize that this is probably the most expensive singular piece of clothing I have ever bought, but they fit really well and I couldn't help myself - and besides, most of it was paid for by a gift card). then we went to VF so that Chris could buy some clothes. we then returned home to research the salt water tank Chris is intending to make in a few months. later, we went to Steve's house where we ate some chinese and watched Mythbusters.

today we went to That Pet Place to pick up a new tank for The Lizard, buy supplies for my upcoming salamander, and to price out the saltwater tank. all of these things were successfully accomplished. on the way we went to Dunkin Donuts, which is always nice. when we got back, we went to all the major local pet stores (Pet Supplies Plus, PetCo, and PetSmart) to find a salamander, but alas, none were available. we are gonna have to order one. then we came home and set up The Lizard's new tank. Chris bought her a 30 gallon breeder tank, so she has much more room to run around now. we also set up my office tank, even though there isn't anything in it yet. now we are going to play God of War II.

and on top of all this, it has been sunny and warm. seriously, best weekend ever.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

they should totally blow up

sorry about the lack of activity. saturday I was sick, and also the same thing on sunday. monday was anime and last night I was at my parents' house. not that it matters much, as I haven't really been up to anything all that interesting.

I was pretty down about the weekend being a big, fat waste of my time, but the more I thought about it, the more I realized I was looking at it the wrong way. instead of being down on myself for falling asleep on the sofa at 10:30 at night, I should instead be happy for the delicious meal at I was treated to at Buca that put me in the food coma in the first place.

instead of being upset that I spent all day at home alone on saturday, I should instead be glad to have spent the day watching the Office and eating peanut butter and jelly sandwiches.

and sunday... sunday I stayed in my pajamas on the sofa all day watching Chris play God of War II. we ordered sandwiches to avoid leaving the house and/or making any food ourselves. I can not remember the last time I had such a laid-back, relaxing day. this is not something to be sad about. not at all. so yeah, it wasn't such a bad weekend after all.

this weekend is shaping up to be a pretty busy one, which is fine. it is also supposed to be pretty warm, which is super-fine.

Steve and I have been working on a secret project, which is expected to finally come to fruition tomorrow. I suppose we've already talked about it on twitter, so it can't hurt to talk about it here: we're making a M:tG podcast. more details to come. I doubt will post any of them until we have a little bit of a backlog ready for when we get lazy (which will undoubtedly be almost immediately). but we are planning to record our first session tomorrow night. so hopefully that will go well and it will be super awesome and we will become internet celebrities.