Saturday, March 31, 2012

March's Reading Challenge Review

March has been another great book month. I'm still staying ahead of my set book quota (seven books). I read nine this month. Also, the reading challenges are going better than expected. I completed three challenges and am close to finishing four more.

I finished Suzanne Collins' Hunger Game series. I think the second one might have been my favourite but they were all good and worth reading. I'm glad I read them before seeing the movie (which I haven't seen yet). Another great YA fiction was City of Bones, I liked the twists.

One of my favourite reads was Becoming the Answer to Our Prayers –Shane Claiborne & Jonathan Wilson-Hartgrove. I picked it up Saturday at Jesus to the Nations missions conferences and had it finished by Sunday night. I will be re-reading it later this month.

And now for the challenges update:
1. Name: 2012 Book Blogger Recommendation Challenge
Goal: Level I - 5 books
Books Read: 4/5

2. Name: Finishing the Series 2012 VICTORY!
Goal: Level 3 - finish three series
Series Read: 4/3

3. Name: Mystery & Suspense Reading Challenge 2012
Goal: Level 1 -read 12 books
Books Read: 2/12

4. Name: Mount TBR Reading Challenge
Goal: Pike's Peak -12 books from the TBR pile
Books Read: 5/12

5. Name: 2012 Audio Book Challenge
Goal: Going Steady -listen to 12 audio books
Books Read: 6/12

6. Name: 2012 Dystopian Challenge VICTORY!
Goal: Intermediate Post World Trainee 4-6 books
Books Read: 5/4

7. Name: The Reading Challenge Addict Challenge VICTORY!
Goal: Easy as Pie 1-5 Challenges completed
Completed Challenges: 2/1-5

8. Name: Speculative Fiction Challenge
Goal: In Nirvana - 24 novels
Books Read: 15/24

9. Name: 1st in a Series Challenge
Goal: Series Lover -6 books
Books Read: 4/6

10. Name: 2nds Challenge
Goal: A Full Plate -12 books
Books Read: 5/12

11. Name: New Authors Challenge 2012
Goal: 15 New Authors
New Authors Discovered: 13/15

12. Name: Read the Bible 2012Books Read: 0/66 -using One Year Bible

13. Name: 2012 Young Adult Reading Challenge
Goal: The Mini YA Challenge -12 books
Books Read: 9/12

14. Name: What's In A Name 5
Goal: Read a title that fits all 6 categories
Books Read: 1/6

15. Name: All the Books of Pern Challenge 2012
Goal: Blue - 6 books
Books Read: 4/6

16. Name: Game of Thrones Reading Challenge 2012
Goal: Read the series - 5 books
Books Read: 0/5

17. Name: 2012 Women's Murder Club Reading Challenge
Goal: Level 5 books
Books Read: 2/5

18. Name: 2012 Chunkster Challenge
Goal: The Chubby Chunkster - 4 books
Books Read: 3/4

19. Name: Tea & Books Reading Challenge
Goal: Chamomile Lover - 2 books
Books Read: 0/2

20. Name: Outdo Yourself 2012
Goal: Breaking a sweat – Read 11–15 more books
Books Read: 0/11

Friday, March 30, 2012

Friday's Favourite Things 2

Here are a few more of my favourite things:

Games

Books that inspire and challenge

Drawing

Dinner invitations -I love meals with friends!

Best Friend hugs -which are wonderful because she is wonderful and I love her and because if we can actually exchange hugs it means we're together which only happens a few times a year....I got Best Friend hugs today :)

TV night -Thursdays after youth group is my social TV watching night and it is great fun.

In other news: my Mums now on facebook, while I don't think it is one of the signs of the apocalypses it feels about the same level of strange. Love you Mum, it's just that technology and computers aren't your thing :)

Thursday, March 29, 2012

Missing and Choices

It's been one of those days...for a lot of days now.

I miss writing. I've had ideas and posts in my head but they have never made it to written form. The schedule and my own head have hindered actual writing. I haven't even been able to put words to Thankful Thursdays (I had people in mind) or write a Survivor post (I know most of you find them lame and don't read the Survivor posts, because you've told me you don't, but I like them).

I promise to post something tomorrow and hopefully it will be something decent but regardless I will write and share...choosing to get back into a habit takes actual action. I think I might sign up for another month of "post every day" for April. I also must decided if April is going to be another veggie month. I want to eat bacon on my Birthday. Maybe May could be veggie month.

For those who don't know what "veggie month" is it is a 30 day challenge to be a vegetarian. A few years ago my dear vegan friend asked me to give no meat a try for 30 days. Last year I was trying to think of a great gift to give her for her birthday and decided she would appreciate another month of no meat. I was planning to give her the same gift this year...but I want ham dinner for Easter and bacon on my birthday. And those reasons make me feel a little selfish for giving up on "veggie month". What are your thoughts on the challenge and my choice to participate?

a) I'm crazy for giving up meat in the first place!
b) April should be veggie month (since it's vegan friend's birthday month). No meat for 30 days!
c) April could be veggie month but allow yourself a few exceptions (like Easter and birthday)
d) Make May veggie month this year
e) This is your choice why are you asking us?

Leave a comment below and tell me what you think.

Sunday, March 25, 2012

The Simple Woman Daybook 102

FOR TODAY: March 25, 2012
You can find the more daybooks at Simple Woman's Daybook.

Outside my window...bright skies.

I am thinking...about a good Christian lady who died suddenly yesterday.

I am thankful for...car rides, they might be the best locations for conversations.

I am wearing...skirt and red shirt

I am creating...working on the shawl, it could be done but I've decided to add another section.

I am going...to have a quiet week.

I am reading...The Sweet Far Thing, The Pursuit of God, Almost Christian, Game of Thrones, Sophie's World, Almost Green, and a sci-fiction story a friend loaned me but I forgot the name.

I am wondering...about ministry, missions, and purpose.

I am hoping...to write tomorrow.

I am looking forward to...a supper invitation for later this week.

I am hearing...silence.

Around the house...general cleaning so I can do some sorting/throwing away next week.

I am pondering...the messages I heard yesterday especially the ones by Shane Claiborne. It's inspired me to continue to think about about backyard clubs this summer and a block party and re-image what these two events could be.

One of my favorite things...Jesus to the Nations.

A few plans for the rest of the week: it's my quite week but it the funeral it will be different.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Survivor: One World Week 5

Another great episode last week. The "twist" that might ruin Colton was a switching up of tribes. There is a new Manono tribe and a new Salani tribe both with seven members essentially re-setting the game. I think this is one of the best seasons of Survivor in a long time.


Thoughts on "A Bunch of Idiots":
  • I like the mixing of teams and while it was random it was great to see Colton on the weaker team.
  • I thought the producer/game makers made a great choice in having the "one world" site be a reward challenge and fair to give the losers some supplies to start their new camp.
  • Colton should not be trusted!
  • The blindside to get out the strongest player Monica on Manono was well done but dumb.
  • In an interview Jeff Probst hinted that this week's episode "history repeats itself" I hope that means that Colton's tribe goes down in numbers all the way to the merge till there is only one that no one trusts.
Predictions for March 21:
Salani is the stronger tribe. I will not be surprised if they win both challenges tonight.

If I'm right the weaker Manono tribe will be heading to tribal council, even with the new tribe is Christina still on the outside of the group and has the greatest chance of going home.

If I'm wrong and Salani goes to tribal council I think it would be Kat going home.

All these predictions could be for nothing, the previews hint that someone is being sent home for medical reasons. Interweb rumors suggest it might even be Colton.

Sunday, March 18, 2012

The Simple Woman Daybook 101

FOR TODAY: March 18, 2012
You can find the more daybooks at Simple Woman's Daybook.

Outside my window...winter forest.

I am thinking...about cub cars.

I am thankful for...tea.

I am wearing...skirt and purple shirt

I am creating...working on the shawl again about 15 rows left.

I am going...to enjoy a nap!

I am reading...Mocking Jay, The Sweet Far Thing, The Pursuit of God, Almost Christian, Game of Thrones, Sophie's World, Almost Green, and a sci-fiction story a friend loaned me but I forgot the name.

I am wondering...why it is so hard to keep good habits that I enjoy.

I am hoping...for good weather this week.

I am looking forward to...reunions.

I am hearing...the printer.

Around the house...much laundry to do.

I am pondering...sad thoughts.

One of my favorite things...Doctor Who.

A few plans for the rest of the week: I'm visiting Kingswood with one of my students which is exciting because I am going to reunite with good friends -YAY!

Friday, March 16, 2012

March 16's Friday 5

Today's Friday 5 questions are connected to the statement "Go Fly a Kite"
  1. When was the last time you flew a kite?
    My 26th birthday
  2. When did you last jump into a lake?
    Last summer
  3. When did you last get outta town?
    Last Monday
  4. When did you last take a hike?
    Last summer
  5. When did you last play in traffic?
    ...I don't think I have

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Thankful Thursday -Patrick

I am thankful for...
Patrick Murphy

The other day Patrick and I were having tea (he might have been drinking coffee) when a troubled look crossed his face and he asked "how are we even friends?" It's a good question. Some friendships are unlikely Disney's Fox and the Hound, a cat and a mouse, Patrick and me. The fact that we became friends with so many core differences is kinda strange but in a good way.

We met just a little over a year ago. Our first encounter he got into a ridiculous argument with my friend and while he wasn't serious ticked her off enough that my night was spent calming her down (not an easy task). I was not impressed, but as the argument continued I had to admit he was funny. More than that I began to see that he was playing devil's advocate and pushing buttons on purpose. Few weeks later we got into a decent discussion about the trinity that morphed into an ongoing email discussion for a month. Next we began reading a Christian book and discussing a chapter each week. We started hanging out more till one day I realized he's one of my closest friends.

Once you look past our major differences (I'm a pastor and he's an atheist) we have a lot in common which makes hanging out awesome; we can talk about books, movies, games or we can discuss things we disagree on. I taught his euchre so the Van Meekeren's and finally had enough to play! He's patiently helped me with my chess game. He's introduced me to some great authors. Listened to my sermons to help me critique myself, watches Doctor Who and Firefly and been a good friend. Patrick is smart, fun, supportive, knowledgeable, kind, and puts up with me. I'd say he was a great man, well a good man...well, he's okay. He would never smoother an old woman *big grin.* I love our friendship. Yes, I am very thankful for Patrick.

This was suppose to be last week's thankful Thursday in replace of a Birthday card so...HAPPY Belated BIRTHDAY!

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Survivor: One World Week 4

Last week's episode was Crazy!

C-R-A-Z-Y. No, crazy doesn't even begin to cover what last week's drama. It was bizarre and unthinkable and probably the dumbest move in twenty-four seasons of Survivor -yes, it even tops Erik giving up individual immunity.

So, what happened?

Manono (the all guys tribe) won the immunity challenge. Everyone returns to camp and pre-council plotting and scrammbling begins at th Salani (all girls tribe) camp. Big moves are being whispered about when the cameras take us back to Manono where chaos breaks out. Colton hatches a plan to get Bill because he "wants his head on a platter" convincing his alliance and the entire tribe to give up immunity. DUMBEST MOVE EVER! E-V-E-R!

Thoughts on "Bum-Puzzled":
  • Colton isn't a nice person.
  • Where is the voice of reason on the guys tribe? Why would you ever give up immunity? I think they've missed the point. This is a numbers game. You be going back to tribal counsil sooner or later just wait till the next opportunity to get rid of a member you don't like.
Predictions for March 14:
The previews indicated a surprise twist. Maybe the tribes are mixing up. If that is the case there is no way to know what new loyalties will fall. If tribes stay the same I think Manono will win the immunity and if they keep it (never had to say that before).

If the girls head to tribal council the "young" five girl alliance is weakening but that Christina still has the greatest chance of going home.

If I'm wrong and the guys head to tribal council I think Leif will be going home because of his friendship with Bill.

Sunday, March 11, 2012

The Simple Woman Daybook 100

FOR TODAY: March 11, 2012
You can find the more daybooks at Simple Woman's Daybook.

Outside my window...dark.

I am thinking...about the books I'm reading specifically Sophie's World, which is about the history of philosophy and The Pursuit of God.

I am thankful for...washing machines

I am wearing...jeans and red shirt (not the type that gets extras killed off).

I am creating...the baby blanket is finished! I'll be resuming work on the shawl this week and starting a purse I bought yarn for months ago.

I am going...to enjoy this week!

I am reading...The Sweet Far Thing, City of Bones, The Pursuit of God, Almost Christian, Game of Thrones, Sophie's World, Almost Green, and a sci-fiction story a friend loaned me but I forgot the name.

I am wondering...why I only feel motivated to clean or start projects when it's time for sleep?

I am hoping...to fall asleep before 4am tonight.

I am looking forward to...writing group tomorrow night.

I am hearing...shuffling papers in the other room.

Around the house...I think I'm going to try moving a few things around and hang new curtains.

I am pondering...the Kony 2012 campaign, the organization Invisible Children, injustice in the world, and how I ought to respond. It's been filling my head since I watched the Kony 2012 video that I want to blog about the topic -not sure if it will happen.

One of my favorite things...writing.

A few plans for the rest of the week: It's going to be a quiet week. Writing group tomorrow. I think I'm playing euchre with on Tuesday, youth group on Thursday and that's the week.

Friday, March 09, 2012

Friday's Favourite Things

I've wanted to blog and I have tons to write but it been hard to put the thoughts together. I haven't had a bad week. It's been fantastic really. Life is good but in the midst of it I forgot how good things are. My head got flooded and overwhelmed with thoughts -nothing horrible, well some horrible like Joseph Kony and people I care about are hurting. It was enough that it's rattled me and set me on edge till ...I simple remembered my favourite things and then I didn't feel so bad:

Homemade chocolate chip cookies -doesn't need an explaination.

Painting -the GEMS (girls) and Cadet (boys) are racing kub cars later this month. Tonight was the girls night to make their cars. I was going to make an ice cream cone car...but another girl came with the same idea. It took me awhile to decided on a new idea but when it happened I went all out. It was so much fun! I was reminded that painting relaxes me and helps me think. And I think my car looks great.

Lost Items Found -my favourite hoodie (a black NaNoWriMo hoodie my dad gave me for Christmas a few years ago) went missing in November during Encounter (youth weekend at BBC). It was sad; I was crushed. Tonight, the hoodie was found. It ended up stuffed in the bottom of the sleeping bag I borrowed which was used tonight at the GEM's sleepover -AWESOME!

These are a few of my favourite things!

March 9's Friday 5 +5

Today's Friday 5 questions are connected to the word "String"
  1. What’s a film that always tugs at your heartstrings?
    I don't know
  2. How long would it take you to come up with a six-inch length of string if someone needed it right now?
    Two minutes maybe less
  3. What are your thoughts on string cheese?
    It's fun
  4. Among people you know, who’s the best guitar-player?
    Probably Jesse Potter
  5. What memories do you have of Silly String?
    I surprise attacked the kids at VBS a few summers ago.
The Friday Five questions were also fun, the theme is "Bedtime!"
  1. What do you wear to bed?
    Most of the time pj pants and a tee
  2. What side of the bed do you sleep on?
    My bed is a single, sleeping on a side isn't really an option, there is just the bed
  3. Are you back, side, or stomach sleeper?
    Side
  4. How many layers of bedding are on your bed?
    In the winter at least four...some nights six
  5. Are you a bed hog or a covers-thief?
    Both

Wednesday, March 07, 2012

Survivor: One World Week 3

My predictions for last week were completely wrong.

The all-girls Salani tribe manged to come together winning the rewardand immunity challenges. I hadn't expected that (the previews were misleading).

Thoughts on "One World is Out the Window":
  • The Salani reward victory was impressive. It was an amazing landslide. It was a memory challenge where one member from each tribe had to put objects in a specific order. The woman one every round and earned themselves an amazing fishing kit including a boat.
  • The previews made it seem like there was going to be more tension between the two tribes. There really wasn't.
  • Troyzan had the best quote of the night, "It wouldn’t be Survivor unless there’s lying."
  • I still don't get the Tarzan theme this season. One player is going by Tarzan the other Troyzan...it is strange.
  • The girls might be doing better but they still have issues. The biggest is how the interact with Manono. They expect help but aren't willing to return the favors (like agreeing the could use the boat in exchange for fire). It seems like a poor social game to me.
  • What was Colton thinking?!? Why did he announce that he has an hidden immunity idol at council? Even if you trust your alliance Isn't that painting a huge target on his back after saying that he would rather be with the women. but I can't see him winning.
  • Matt was the first blind-side of the season!
  • I thought it was smart that someone asked if they could know the other votes...Jeff said no. I wonder why.
  • Michael is in trouble. He is out of the loop. He didn't vote for Matt with everyone else. He'll be scrambling to hide friends tonight.
Predictions for February 29:
I think Manono will be out to prove themselves this week and will win the immunity back.

If the girls head to tribal council the "young" five girl alliance will hold strong and of the outsiders I still think Christina has the greatest chance of going home.

If I'm wrong and the guys head to tribal council I think Michael will be going home even though the previews implied that Colton "wants Bill gone".

Sunday, March 04, 2012

The Simple Woman Daybook 99

FOR TODAY: March 4, 2012
You can find the more daybooks at Simple Woman's Daybook.

Outside my window...blinds are closed. It is night.

I am thinking...about past mistakes and situations. They make me sad.

I am thankful for...good friends and hugs.

I am wearing...a brown cordur0y skirt and purple long sleeve shirt.

I am creating...a baby blanket only the border left! Oh, and the shawl (less than 20 rows to go) but it is on hold till the blanket is done.

I am going...to the city tomorrow!

I am reading...Almost Christian, Game of Thrones, Sophie's World, Almost Green, and Anna and the French Kiss.

I am wondering...about change.

I am hoping...for a productive week.

I am looking forward to...tomorrow's trip.

I am hearing...a fan.

Around the house...this week I'm going to be focused on my kitchen, and catching up on laundry cause it didn't really happening.

I am pondering...a movie I watched the other night.

One of my favorite things...the new Studio Ghibli movie The Secret World of Arrietty

A few plans for the rest of the week: Monday will be shopping in the city plus a friend's birthday, Life Group Wednesday, youth group on Thursday, GEMS Friday we'll be making cub cars followed by the GEMS' sleepover and then Saturday will be a crazy day of clean up from sleepover, woman's ministry lunch, and family movie and games night in the evening. It is going to be a busy week.