Saturday, January 24, 2015

Stitch From Stash January

This is my first post for my Stitch From Stash 2015.  
Month: January
Spent: $19.13
Earned: $15 
Pages finished:  1  
Number of Stitches: 11,377 
 Ending Budget: $20.87

Where I started in January

January Stitching:  I finished Page 7.  I keep a stitching journal where I right down all my stitching for the day and then total for the week.   That is how I know exactly how many stitches I put each day.

Bought Stash:
Keepsakes Needlearts has an amazing cleareance sale going on right this is what I broke down and bought:

Ghouls School $4.99
Pinnochio $1.99

Party Cakes KIT $11.99
Ghostly Gatherings $0.99
Pet Ornaments kit $4.99

Update on me:
I went to the doctor this week and found out I have a condition in my feet called Neuropathy.  Which basically means my feet burn and tingle all the time.  I was given a new medicine that causes drowsiness.  Which is funny because I went to him for fatigue and he gave me a B12 shot for energy. Does anyone else see the irony of all this?  

I bought an elliptical machine from Walmart, had it shipped to my house and my DH started putting it together.  It had a total of 78 parts...and wouldn't you know it that one of the 78 parts didn't work.  I had to call them on Monday to let them know and they shipped me a new part. It finally arrived today!  

School has been going well.  I am not sure if I posted that I am teaching 2 sections of English this semester.  It is a little nerve wracking but I do enjoy a challenge.

I have been reading quite a bit as you can tell.  I decided to review all my books.  If any of you use Goodreads I am on there!  My too be read pile is getting bigger and bigger.

Vintage by Susan Gloss

This year I decided to review every book I read because I want to share my love of reading with everyone!!!  Hopefully, my followers will stick around since not all my posts will be about stitching!!!

Vintage by Susan Gloss
Book Blurb:
At Hourglass Vintage in Madison, Wisconsin, every item in the boutique has a story to do the women behind it.
Violet turner had always dreamed of owning a shop like Hourglass Vintage. But while she values the personal history behind each beautiful item she sells, Violet is running from her own past. Faced with the possibility of losing the store to an unscrupulous developer, she realized that despite her usual self-reliance she cannot save it alone.
Eighteen year old April Morgan is nearly five months along in an unplanned pregnancy when her hasty engagement is is broken. When she returns the perfect vintage wedding dress to Violets shop, she discovers a whole of new possibilities, and an unexpected sisterhood with women who won't let her give up on her dreams.
Betrayed by her husband, Amithi Singh begins selling off her vibrant Indian dresses, remnants of a life she's determined to leave behind her. After decades of housekeeping and parenting a daughter who rejects her traditional ways, she fears her best days are behind her....until she discovers an outlet for her creativity and skills with a needle and thread.

My Review:
I was sucked into this book the moment I opened it.  I love how it follows these three women's lives who are such different aspects of life.  There are so many extra characters that make this story just amazing.  The characters seem so real, they are just like people we would know.  Their problems make you want to reach out an hug them so things will get better.   I found myself laughing, getting angry and crying with them.

It is hard to believe that this is Susan Gloss's first book.  I cannot wait to read her next one.

We need to talk about Kevin by Lionel Shriver

As most of you know, I usually read light mysteries and Historical Romance novels.  Every once in a awhile, I will read something that is totally not me.  This is one of those books.

We need to talk about Kevin

Book Blurb:
Eva never really wanted to be a mother - and certainly not the to the mother of the unlovable boy who murdered seven of his fellow high school students, a cafeteria worker, and a much-adored teacher who tried to befriended him, all two days before his sixteenth birthday. Now, two years later, it is time for her to come to terms with marriage, career, family, parenthood, and Kevins horrific rampage in a series of startling direct correspondences with her estranged husband, Farnklyn. Uneasy wit the sacrifices and social demotion of motherhood from the start, Eva fears that her alarming dislike for her own son ma be responsible for driving him so nihilistically off the rails. 

My Review:
This is a very hard book to read and I had to read it in small sections at a time.  Since I am teacher, I do read some books like this because I know it can happen at any time.  This is every teachers fear that someone will come to school and start shooting.  It took me a while to get started in this book because the entire book is written in letters to her estranged husband Franklyn.  She starts with their life before children. She owned a travel company that wrote books for people on where to stay. She would travel for 3 or 4 months at a time.  However, she had to give all that up when she became a mom.  In each letter you find more and more of the story, how Kevin was before the rampage and after the rampage.  You see how their relationships are and you really get involved with the characters.

This book really hits on the nature vs nurture debate.  When I finished the book, I just say in my chair because I wasn't sure how I felt.  To be honest, this book is still making me uncertain how I feel.  I knew the whole story would come out but I wasn't expecting how it turned out.  I know that sounds strange but it a very powerful book.  I do recommend this one.

Embroidery Cozy Mystery Series by Amanda Lee

I love to read cozy mysteries because they usually come in series and you get to know the characters so well.  This series takes place in Oregon and Marcy Singer owns the Seven Year Stitch. This is an embroidery and knitting store.  She offers classes in Cross stitching, embroidery, knitting and all sorts of needlework.  As a crossstitcher, this is what drew me to this series. 

A Cozy Mystery is where a story takes place in a small town and the police are usually helped by a regular citizen who turns into a small time detective.   There is not a lot of blood or violence in the book.  Think Murder She Wrote or Matlock. 

Marcy is working with her dog Angus, an Irish Wolfhound, when a Cassandra Wainwright came into her shop to request that Marcy help her with her wedding dress.  She is getting married in two weeks and needs to customize her Mother-in-Laws dress with these beautiful gems.  Cassandra is a bridezilla that Marcy is dreading working with because of all of the drama she knows that is coming.  She didn't expect a death at her shop to make working with this bridezilla even worse!!!!
To make matters worse, her ex, who left her at the alter has shown up in town wanting her back!  Of course her two love interest in town is not liking the fact that David is back!  

While Marcy is trying to learn how to stitch Irish Embroidery, her love interest Todd is arrested for murder!  His fingerprints, along with her best friends husband Blake.  They were throwing a fraternity reunion party at Todd's club when someone was shot and both Todd's and Blake's fingerprints were on the gun!  Marcy is involves herself in this case to save both her friends.

This is an easy book to read and it nice to read about new types of stitching.  I am really getting tired of the Marcy-Todd-Ted love triangle...she really needs to make a decision.  I didn't figure out the killer so that is a good book in my opinion!

Marcy is asked by her friend, Reggie the local librarian, if she would help out with the local domestic abuse group.  She would like Marcy to teach them to stitch to help them feel better about themselves and gain confidence that they can do something.  One of the ladies, Mary Canter, has a father-in-law that has a tapestry over 100 years old that he swears is a treasure map.  Marci agrees to look at the tapestry but must do it without Mary's abusive husband finding out.  

Once Marcy meets Mr. Canter, she agrees to take his tapestry, check the history and keep it safe.  After this meeting there is a murder and Marcy is on the case again.

As you can tell, I like this series.   Finally, she picks either Ted or Todd to date.  I like her choice!!  I think she belongs with this guy.  Learning to stitch can help build your confidence, and I like how they were started with stamped cross stitch.  This is very easy for a new stitcher.  

The Cherry Cola Book Club by Ashton Lee

Book Blurb:
With its corrugated iron siding and cramped interior the Cherico Mississippi library is no Antebellum gem. But for young librarian Maura Beth Mayhew it's as essential to the community as the delicious desserts at the Twinkle Twinkle Café. It's a place for neighbors to mingle and browse through the newest bestsellers for the indomitable Miss Voncille Nettles to host her "Who's Who in Cherico?" meetings. The library may be underfunded and overlooked but it's Maura Beth's pride and she won't let the good ole boys on the City Council close it down without a fight.

Which is why Maura Beth has founded the Cherry Cola Book Club--a last-ditch attempt to boost circulation and save her job. Over potluck dinners featuring treasured family recipes the booklovers of Cherico come together to talk about literary classics. But soon it's not just Margaret Mitchell and Harper Lee being discussed over chicken gumbo and homemade biscuits with green pepper jelly. Secrets are shared old dreams rekindled and new loves slowly blossom.

Southern charm wit and warmth combine in this delightful novel about great books true friends and the stories that give life its richest meaning on and off the page.

My Review
I liked this book.  It just reminded me of what life is like in small Southern town where the Good -Ole Boys Club runs the towns and you do not get in their way. 

Maura Beth comes up with this great idea to start a book club after talking with a new patron of the library.   I love that they are reviewing books set in the south.  You just get sucked into the stories and you find yourself totally absorbed in these characters lives.  You think you begin to know them and then one of them will do something or say something off the wall.   I loved the books they reviewed and how they changed up their book talks at the library.

I can totally see how the Good Ole Boys club was at work trying to convince her this scheme would not work and that the library wasn't something their town needed.  It makes it you want to go to library to show your support.  It will also make you hungry when you read this has some great recipes!!!!

Tuesday, January 6, 2015

Book Reviews

Let it Be Love - Amazon Link

I am a HUGE Victoria Alexander Fan and I think I have read almost all of her books.  She writes Historical Romance novels..  I love the fact that she writes her books in series so you find out about the lives of all of her characters.  What happens after the marriage, how their kids turn is just fun.  

This book is about Fiona and her sisters who are living with their cousin as poor relations.  Fiona's father passed away and left a very weird clause in his will that either she marries and inherits her money or she and her sisters remain poor for the rest of their lives.   Fiona is desperate so she proposes marriage to one of her cousins friends.  

I liked this has funny story line, good characters and makes you feel like you are back in Regency times.  You go to balls, modistes  to get gowns made, travel in carriages and are seen in hyde park during the fashionable hour.

Apothecary Daughter - Amazon Link

I listened to this one on audio.  Lillian Haswell, is the daughter of the local apothecary.  At this time in England, women do not have the right to dispense medicine to the public so she can never take over her fathers shop.  She, however, has the desire to see the world outside her little village and to possibly find her mother who left them a few years ago.  Her aunt and uncle offer the chance to go to London and experience a season and presented in society in hopes of finding a good match for a husband.  However, tragedy strikes and she has to return home to help her father.....but does she find love and excitement she craves?

This is a good read.  I really enjoyed this book.  It has some mystery, romance, surprising ending...This book is in the Christian book section.

The Divorce Papers - Amazon Link

I was reading a magazine and this is the book that was recommended and I don't know why!    I opened the book to expecting to find the normal type book...nope.  This book does have a story line but it is all done in Memo's, emails, letters, handwritten notes and court documents.  I read it in one day only because I skipped most of the court documents.  Basically it is about a woman whose husband of 18 years has decided he wants a divorce.  The wife is a basket case on antidepressants at the drop of hat and has to learn to stand on her own two feet.   The lawyer, 29 year old Sophie is actually a criminal lawyer who is given this case by accident and can't get rid of it.  Sophie has to figure out how to outwit the husband who has hired the dirtiest law firm in town.

I guess it was ok but really hard to follow.   This is the authors first novel and got good reviews.  However, this was not a book for me.  I read it, I finished it and it was ok.

Faery Tales and Winners!!!

I finished page 6 of Faery tales!!!!!  I spent my break stitching the beanstalk, cabin and rock.  That is one huge rock!!!!  I have 34 pages to go! 

If you have a blog please put the title in the comments....I would love to follow you!!!

School is back in session and I have been coming home so tired.  Monday night, I came home and my husband had done the dishes, fed the babies, cleaned the litter box and had burgers on the grill.  I was able to go in our bedroom and just enjoy some quiet before dinner.  It was just so nice!   


The winner of the Just Cross Stitch Ornament issue is  Meari

The winner of the Cross stitch Needleworker is Virpi

No one wanted the Halloween issue.....poor homeless magazine!

If you will email me your address, I will get it in the mail on Saturday.