Saturday, September 15, 2012

Monday Update & Ramblings -- Welcoming Fall, Ditching the Family, & Round-Up of Books & Movies

It's the beginning of the traditional school year, when good intentions come home to roost. I've been hoping to get back into a routine and revive my homeschooling blog, Confessions of an Eclectic Erratic Homeschooling Mom. This week, once again, we did NOT hit the ground running. I got knocked down by a bad cold. However, Trisha and I have started classes and co-op. Because oddly enough, the world moves forward whether we're ready or not.

At the beginning of the week, the teens and I went for a picnic and a short hike. It was an exceptionally gorgeous day, so we dumped our academic plans and went up to the Blue Ridge Parkway. Trees beginning to turn a bit, patches of wildflowers, and a plethora of goldenrod everywhere, plus the ubiquitous song of crickets. Maybe I'm starting to warm up to the idea of fall arriving.



Today I ditched my family and went out with a group of other moms to celebrate a friend's birthday.

Motherhood in the 21st century. Yup ... this is how the pros do it. :-P
We went canoeing, then out for lunch and drinks. Have you ever seen a group of 30- and 40-something-year-old moms who've been cut loose from their kids, jobs, et. al. for the day? Rowdy and raucous. We could make a fraternity house full of college boys look like a Sunday School choir.

It was great fun although the river was a bit too shallow.  Several times we got stuck on the rocks in the river bed and had to get out and push our boats. The rocks below our feet were slippery, and there is a reason I was always picked last for school sports teams -- I have the natural coordination and grace of a lame rhinoceros. Most of the group got a bit wet, but I am the only one who ended up -- quite literally -- on my ass in the river. 

What do real friends do when you're on your oversized keister in the river? They take pictures. It'll probably be all over Facebook by tomorrow afternoon.

It's Monday, What Are You Reading? is hosted by Sheila at Book Journey.





Books Reviewed This Week:
  • Blue Asylum by Kathy Hepinstall -- (4.5/5 stars) Lyrical, gorgeously descriptive novel of a plantation wife committed to an insane asylum in the waning days of the civil war.
  • Crazy School by Cornelia Read -- (4/5 stars) This murder mystery is the second in a series featuring amateur sleuth Madeline Dare. A tragic event at a boarding school for troubled teens prompts Madeline to investigate the academy's deeply dysfunctional leadership and put herself in danger in search of a murderer.

Other Posts:  
  
10 Book-to-Movie Adaptations I Read But Never Watched
 


Books Received for Review:

 
Genus by Jonathan Trigell -- I was excited to receive this book from the publisher. Trigell is also the author of Boy A which was adapted into a film starring Andrew Garfield.  
from Goodreads: In the Britain of a few tomorrows time, physical perfection is commonplace and self improvement has become an extinct expression: all the qualities men and women could aspire to can be purchased prior to birth. "Genus" is a time of genetic selection and enrichment - life chances come on a sliding scale according to wealth. For some there is no money or choice, and an underclass has evolved; London's King's Cross, or The Kross as it is now known, has become a ghetto for the Unimproved. In The Kross, the natural, the dated, the cheap and the dull, live a brittle and unenviable existence. But unrest is growing; tension is mounting and a murderer is abroad in these dark quarters.


Curiosity Killed The Kat: Book 1 (A Katherine Flynn Novel) (Kindle Edition) by Elizabeth Nelson 
from Goodreads: Katherine was the perfect obedient wife. She would do anything for her husband. That is, until she discovers he's the ring leader of a human trafficking organization. The action is fast and furious, the dialogue smart and the sex scenes hot.

Other Books Read:

The Cradle Robbers -- from Goodreads: In The Cradle Robbers, the sixth Mommy-Track mystery featuring a lovable defense attorney turned stay-at-home mom and part-time detective, Juliet Applebaum is faced with her most heartrending case yet: a mother whose newborn baby has been stolen. When Juliet hears from her office assistant a story about an incarcerated woman whose infant son has been allegedly kidnapped by a questionable foster care agency, her conscience tells her to investigate even though her potential client is penniless, serving a lengthy prison term, and a recovering drug addict.



Flashpoint by Lynn Hightower --from Goodreads: Police Specialist Sonora Blair of the Cincinnati Homicide Division is awakened in the middle of the night with an urgent summons to take a deathbed statement. When she arrives at the hospital, the victim is unable to talk, but her questions elicit one key detail: the psycho who perpetrated this gruesome crime is a woman. Driven and determined, Sonora is committed to finding this killer before she strikes again - no matter the cost to her private life or the politics of her career. When the murderer begins to call Sonora - taunting, mocking her, trying to lure her into a twisted woman-to-woman complicity - the stakes go up, and the case becomes all too personal

31 comments:

  1. Don't worry, Steph. You weren't alone. I fell on my tucus just when you did :) The gals are so nice to document it!

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    1. *LOL* I don't know how I missed that -- I must've had my head turned when you landed on your bum. We must've been quite a spectacle! Best birthday get-together ever!

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  2. I know that hike was just gorgeous. Nothing is changing here yet. I am afraid we won't have much color because we had so little rain. I love that letter! Your day out with the Moms sounds so fun except for the whole 'landing on your ass' thing. :) Looking forward to reading posts over at Erratic.

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    1. Thanks, Karen! I'm sure fall comes later down in Alabama, but I hope you will get some color despite the dry summer. Things are just barely beginning to turn here -- just a tinge of color here and there, which is why I photographed that particular tree. The leaves should hit their peak here in Virginia in about a month. Oh, and landing on my butt wasn't bad at all -- I just like poking fun at myself. :-) As I told my husband "I was wounded in dignity only." Hah! :-P

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  3. Things get so hectic when 'back to school time' arrives.
    I so easily adjust to those lazy days of summer and now in between taking them back and forth to school, afterschool activities, homework assignments...etc...I barely have time for anything else.
    Your day out with the girls sounds wonderful! As does the hiking trip. lol I still leave my kids handwritten notes too.
    Happy reading. That cover on Curiosity Killed The Kat is raunchy!

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    1. Yes, it is pretty raunchy, isn't it? :-) I hadn't looked at it that closely (I have the Kindle version). Sounds like your reaction to back-to-school season is much like mine.

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  4. Ah, back to school! We've started too and one of my sons isn't very interested in his homework - you see, he has none, most of the time. So he says. It's a struggle, but I can follow his progress (his marks) via internet if the teachers don't forget to enter them. No escaping the modern mum indeed!

    I very much enjoyed Genus and I hope you'll love it too.

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    1. Your son tells you he doesn't have homework, eh? :-) Thank goodness for modern technology. It's difficult for kids to get away with stuff like that nowadays.

      I'm glad you liked Genus! Since I enjoyed another novel by this author so much, I have high hopes.

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  5. You know what? Everyone deserves their fun times. Whether they're kids or mums! The photos looks amazing and it sounds like you all had a blast.

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  6. I love those landscape pics, and that note is priceless. It sounds like a fun day, apart from the inevitable leak of those photos when you fell. ;-)

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    1. *LOL* Yes, the photo was leaked. It's on Facebook. With good friends like this, who needs enemies? :-P

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  7. Love the photos and your comments cracked me up, I can relate as I'm a total klutz. Your note to the kids is a classic ... thanks for the laugh and I'm so glad you enjoyed the 'grown up girl bonding'

    Have a great week and happy reading :)

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  8. Sounds like a fabulous weekend! I'm overdue for a mum's night out!

    Enjoy your reads this week,
    Shelleyrae @ Book'd Out

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  9. Sorry to say after showing concern for my friend falling in the water, I hope we can have a good laugh about it :-) And it's happened to me too (I'm naturally clutzy).

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    1. Absolutely! We were all laughing the whole time.

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  10. HA! It's definitely important to prepare for the zombie apocalypse!!

    Have a wonderful reading week :)
    Whatcha readin' this week @ the Brunette Librarian :)

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    1. Well, that's my son's philosophy. He is preparing, mostly through undead-related video gaming. ;-)

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  11. Oh my word, lol, that letter to your kids is fantastic!!

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  12. Bentonville as in Arkansas? That's just around the road from me (ok, not really but you know). I hope there wasn't a zombie invasion while you were gone! ;) The pictures from your outing with the kiddos are beautiful. Wishing that we got more of the color changes down here. We do a bit, but not until closer to Thanksgiving.

    Don't you ever wish that sometimes the world would stop and wait?

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    1. Actually this Bentonville is a hole in the wall town in Virginia. :-) Thanks for your kind comments, Trish. The colors aren't changing yet here, either, though there is a tinge of color here and there. I just happened to snap a photo of a tree that had changed.

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  13. Love that note to the kids! My mother usually just leaves me notes concerning what to give the dog to eat and at what time. No one cares what I eat :)

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    1. *LOL,* Margaret. Is it because she thinks humans can fend for themselves or because she likes the dog best? :-P

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    2. I think it's because she likes the dog best :)

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  14. Wow, those pictures are lovely! Looks like you had a brilliant picnic - thanks for sharing!

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  15. Sorry you aren't feeling too well, hope you're feeling better now! It must be the start of the school year - I always get bugs at this time too.

    Great photos :)

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    1. I know what you mean. Whatever this bug is, it's really making its way around the community.

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