Thursday, May 28, 2009


Any spam is bad enough but I seem to get more than my share of spam meant for men. Sometimes I wish I could just reach through the computer and give someone a good shaking, and tell them, "I don't have a penis and no matter what I do I'm never going to grow one! Quit sending me emails telling me how to make it bigger!" Other emails I get frequently are offering to sell me drugs from Canada. I have enough trouble paying insurance co-pays for legal drugs. Why would I want to pay more for your illegal ones? And you know I'm a millionaire several times over - the poor widowed woman in Africa, the Barrister, and the UK Lottery have all told me .... again and again and again. Then there are those that threaten me by saying 'this is your FINAL notice'. Oh, it that were only true!

What rhymes with damn but doesn't come in a can?
What will grow your penis, make you more of a man?
What promises you millions but always with a catch?
If you're single (or not), what'll find you a match?


I haven't posted my wins since May 4 but I haven't won much this month, just the Romano Grill gift basket and 3 books. I haven't received the gift basket yet so I had Deborah from Jersey Bites check on it for me. They've decided to send all actual products instead of one box and coupons but she said it's in the mail now. I'm looking forward to trying the dinners. Two of the books I won came from Drey's Library, David Baldacci's First Family (reviewed below) and Testimony by Anita Shreve. The other is No One You Know by Michelle Redmond. I won it from Too Fond of Books. I am so enjoying reading these new books that I can't afford to buy. Thank you, thank you.

Around the House

Don't you just love it when you get an unexpected bargain? I know I do. I have a small area on the west side of the house where the birdfeeders hang between 2 trees. I've planted some hostas and impatiens, have a birdbath and a couple of metal lawn chairs there. The only problem is there isn't much grass and I don't have the budget to put down landscaping blocks or cement. To get me out of the mud, I went to Home Depot last week to buy mulch. They had a good deal on cypress mulch, 5 bags for $10.00. I knew 5 bags would probably cover the area I wanted so that's all I bought. As the HD guys were throwing the mulch in the pickup, one of them threw in an extra bag that had a small hole. When I mentioned that was more than I bought, he said "No charge. Would you like another one, too?" Of course, I said yes. So for $10.60, we got 7 bags. Can't beat that and now I can sit and watch and listen to the birds or read and not get my feet muddy.
My (well-used) electric dryer started acting up last week. It would stop before the clothes were dry and it was making a louder humming noise than usual when it ran. This week it only wants to run about 5 minutes and it stops. I have a feeling something's letting it get too hot and then it shuts off. The basement is so damp, I know it's not good for either the washer or the dryer. Jim and I cleaned the exhaust vent out last night but it didn't help. I HAD to wash jeans and capris so I was very glad that it's quit raining and a little warmer. I have one of those small, square clotheslines and I hung the jeans out. Now I have to iron them as well to get some of the stiffness out

Books I've read this week - First Family

Last night I finished reading another good book, First Family by David Baldacci. I won this from Drey's Library earlier this month. (Thanks Drey!) This was the first book I'd read by this author but I like his style and he's the author of 16 consecutive bestsellers. This book is also on the bestselling list right now.

In the story, the niece of the First Lady is kidnapped and her mother killed. We learn early on who the kidnapper is but not why he did it. Was the girl's family the real target or is the President involved in some way? Private investigator Sean King and his partner, Michelle Maxwell, both former Secret Service agents, are asked by the First Lady to find and rescue the girl. This causes hard feelings both with the Secret Service and the FBI but because the President's wife asked them to join in the hunt, they can't complain.....too much. While they're trying to solve this case, Michelle's mother dies and her death turns out to be a homicide so Michelle and Sean also work to find her killer. Michelle thinks her father may be involved. This story within a story was well-written and didn't detract from the main thread. I found the descriptions of how things are handled behind the scenes at the White House very interesting. The kidnapper's well-thought-out plans were very inventive and you had to feel some compassion for him when you found out his reasons. The book has intrigue, violence, romantic tension, family feuding, smart kids, ruthlessness and compassion, and interesting locations. I'd recommend it to both men and women.

I did find a couple of passages in the book which didn't read right though. At one point while investigating her mother's death, Michelle tells her mother's friend the death was a homicide. A couple of paragraphs later, the friends says, "Are you telling me she was murdered?" Michelle says, "Why would you think that?" Well, duh! You just told her.

Then later in the story Michelle fractures her ankle and yet a short while later she's driving, jumping out of her vehicle and running. My husband broke his big toe a few years ago and it hurt like hell. Even if Michelle had been to the doctor between the two scenes, she would probably be on pain killers, shouldn't be driving and no way would she be running. Edited to add - I contacted Mr. Baldacci through his website and told him I thought there were mistakes in the book. I received a very nice email from his secretary as follows: "Thank you for your recent email to David Baldacci. David read your note and asked that I extend his personal appreciation for reading with a close eye. We have passed along errors in FIRST FAMILY to David’s editor."

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

Win 'Mating Rituals of the North American WASP'

Would you marry someone with a very different, upper class lifestyle and stay with him or her a year just to help them inherit some money that they would share with you? What if you had to pass for a 'proper' Connecticut wife and the man was handsome and charming? Hard decision maybe. Well, that's exactly what Peggy does in Mating Ritual of the North American Wasp and it doesn't help that she was drunk when she made the decision.

Drey's Library is giving her readers a chance to win a copy of this book by Lauren Lipton, deputy editor at Cosmopolitan. To enter, comment here and share if you'd be able to be "one of them". Other entry info on her blog. Enter by 6 p.m. June 7th. Good luck

Monday, May 25, 2009

Books I've read this week - the girl who stopped swimming

I just finished reading the girl who stopped swimming by Joshilyn Jackson ©2008. I REALLY enjoyed this book! I want to thank Jill at Rhapsody in Books again for selecting me as an alternate winner of this book.

The story centers on Laurel Hawthorne - wife, mother, quilt artist. She used to be visited by the ghost of her uncle after he was (accidentally?) shot and killed while on a hunting trip 26 years ago. She's been ghost free since getting married at age 19 and moving into a gated community near Pensacola. One hot August night she's awakened by a new ghost, that of her 13-year-old daughter's friend, Molly. Molly leads her to the bedroom window where Laurel sees her lifeless body in the backyard pool. All hell breaks loose as Laurel discovers her perfect life isn't so perfect after all. Was the death accidental as the police decided? Who was the shadow Laurel saw moving in the yard? And where were her daughter and her visiting cousin at the time Molly died? Neither of them were in their beds and it was the middle of the night.

Laurel's family consists of people with very different personalities. Her husband David is a computer software designer who spends most of his time working out of his basement office developing new games. Although he lacks in social skills, he makes up for this by providing his wife with great sex. Her daughter Shelby, who Laurel tries to shield from the bad things in life, is a typical teenager. Laurel's sister, Thalia, has a marriage of convenience with a gay man and together they run and act in a small theater. She's always looked down on Laurel's life and can't believe she's happy being a wife and mother. Thalia and David despise each other and she and Laurel haven't spoken in months. Their mother grew up dirt poor in Delop, Alabama, and now tries to forget except each Christmas when she takes her daughters and goes back to her hometown to distribute gifts to all her distant relatives. And there's distant cousin Bet Clemmens, the same age as Shelby,but who's grown up living a very different life in the squalor of DeLop. She's came to stay for the summer. All these people interact so strongly and make the story so interesting. I think this book would make a great movie. There's are super- natural occurrences, possible incest, sex, (adulterous and otherwise), murder, and finally, understanding. As Laurel tries to figure out what's going on, one thing kept going through my mind - the adage 'assume makes an ass of u and me'. Maybe she shouldn't have always assumed that everyone is telling her the truth.

The book was written in a very easy to read style and the author drew me in to what Laurel was feeling. I really liked the book and would like to read the author's others stories, gods in Alabama and Between, Georgia.

Book Giveaway:Lilli Feisty's Bound to Please

Drey's Library has 5 copies of Lilli Feisty's Bound to Please to giveaway.
About the book: Ruby Scott is a beautiful, quiet event planner who leads an oh-so-respectable life. Yet the things that go on in her secret fantasies are anything but. She has every intention of keeping her hidden desires under wraps-until she meets a gorgeous, hard-muscled man ten years her junior. Mark St. Crow is a gifted, up-and-coming musician who collects erotic art and loves to "play" women as much as his piano. After one night of uninhibited passion, Ruby realizes there's no turning back. But as she surrenders to her deepest needs and lets Mark control every forbidden thrill, her passion for him builds. Can the wild, intoxicating nights they share lead to a love that will last forever?

To enter, leave a comment here. Extra entry information on the blog. Contest ends June 5 at 6 p.m. central time.

Sunday, May 24, 2009

Books I've read this week - The Face

I hope everyone is having a great holiday weekend. It's been hot for the past few days here and it rained about 1/2" today. We were able to go to the cemeteries this afternoon before and between showers. Between us, our deceased relatives are spread out over 4 different ones in the county so it takes a while to visit them all.

My sister and I traded Dean Koontz books this week. She gave me The Face © 2003. After reading the book blurb on the back I thought this would be about "Hollywood's most dazzling star", also known as 'the Face'; however, he's away filming or something and never actually appears in the story. The story centers around his 10 year old son, Aelfric, known as Fric, who's home with no one but the help most of the time and the ex-cop, Eathan Truman, who's been hired as live-in head of security at the actor's mansion. Mysterious but threatening packages have been arriving at the mansion and it's up to Eathan to figure out what the threat is and who's behind it. Fric gets spooky, warning phone calls telling him he needs to find a place to hide because someone is coming for him and soon, but the calls don't show up on the security phone log. When another package is delivered in person, the security cameras are able to get the license plate number on the person's vehicle. When Eathan goes to confront the man, he's shot and killed but then mysteriously, is alive again and sitting in his car in front of the man's apartment just like it's been a bad dream. How then did he get his own blood on his hands and why did the shooting seem so real? Is someone out to kill 'the Face' and why? How can Eathan stop them if he keeps having such real visions of his own death and what do the visions mean?

I enjoyed this book and had fun trying to visualize the mansion in my head .... three stories and 2 basement level garages, tall French windows with bronze frames and beveled glass, huge indoor and outdoor pools, a conservatory filled with tropical plants and so big it has an indoor gazebo, a library with a thirty-foot stained glass dome, and acres of carefully groomed landscaping. Gray-green cobblestones lead to an ornamental bronze gate. Not a bad place to work, huh? Add a tempermental foreign chef, a bossy housekeeper and her husband, several security men, one little lonely boy, some supernatural happenings, and a very determined ex-cop. It was a good story but it does have quite a bit of graphic violence.

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Happy Anniversay Jay & Dianna!

Tomorrow, May 21, is my son's 4th wedding anniversary. He had worked several winters in Hawaii and loves everything about the islands so they decided to have a Hawaiian-themed wedding even though it took place in central Iowa. We had a lot of fun decorating the wedding/reception hall with tropical decor.

Happy anniversay guys! I wish you many more. Love ya lots - Mom

Good News and Gardening

Jim got notice last week that he was probably going to be recalled to work. It was verified today that he's to go back Tuesday after the holiday. YIPPEE! I'm very glad but not just because of the money. I'm home most of the time since I quit work a year ago. Like most people, I somewhat set in my ways and I like the quiet. When Jim is home, he likes to talk and he doesn't care if the other person (in this case, ME), is reading, watching TV, or just trying to relax. If we're outside doing something together I don't mind but sometimes in the house, it really bugs me. I finally convinced him that I wouldn't mind at all if he went and had coffee with some of the retired guys in town and he's been doing that occasionally.
I was somewhat dreading making another planter box so I'd have room for my peppers. It's not so much work making the box as it is tilling up the sod and then removing all the grass so it doesn't grow up through the planting bed. If I had thought ahead (NOT my stongpoint), I could have used Roundup on the spot about 10 days ago and the grass would have been dead. Jim came up with the idea of using a large shipping crate he had brought home from work several months ago. It doesn't look the greatest but the plants won't care. It had gaps between boards so we used other scrap lumber (that, I do have lots of) and we covered the slits. The gaps in the bottom were very narrow so I just covered the bottom with newspaper before we filled it with dirt. I didn't make as nice a soil mix as I did in the planting bed and that may be a problem but I'm sure it will grow peppers with a little fertilizer. We sat the crate on a couple of pallets (also brought from Jim's work) closer to the house so I can monitor the watering better. I waited until this evening for it to be cooler and the wind to die down before I planted.

I put a couple of hummingbird feeders out yesterday. Jim said he saw one last week and one buzzed by as I was planting the peppers. I don't buy special food; I just mix 1 part sugar to 4 parts water,(for example 1/2 c. sugar to 2 cups of water), heat in the micro and stir until the sugar is all dissolved. Then cool and fill the feeders.

Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Books I've read this week - The Blue Pen; One Door Away from Heaven

I was asked to review The Blue Pen by Lisa Davis ©2009. The book is about a magazine writer, Parker Downes, who when getting in his car to go to work one cold morning surprises a bag lady who has been sleeping in his car. He's very upset obviously but later the more he thinks about it, the more he gets interested in why she's homeless. He assumed all homeless were mentally ill but the run-in with the woman, Cleo, has piqued his curiosity. When he tries to find her again, he gets mugged. He then writes an article for his magazine about finding her in his car and the mugging. After the article is printed, Cleo herself contacts him by climbing up his fire escape and knocking on his window. He invites her in and when he offers her food, a bath, and a clean bed, she agrees to stay with him for a few days and tell him her story. He finds her fascinating but he has to get her to tell him quickly before another reporter steals the story. Another person who has also read his first article is the woman's daughter and she comes looking for the mother she hasn't seen in 20 years. Parker has to decide if he should tell the woman's story and let her return to the streets or try and reunite her with her family.

I had a little bit of a hard time getting into the story. I thought the first couple of chapters which set up the story and focus on the writer were slow going but once the book progressed to the woman's story I found it quite interesting. Most of it was written in the viewpoint of Cleo as she's telling her story to Parker, explaining why she chose to leave her family and live on the streets. All in all, I did enjoy the book.

I have to say a couple of things didn't ring true for me. How did the woman get in his car in the first place? No one living in a city would park on the street and leave their car unlocked. Also, Parker is a writer but has no computer at home because "he didn't want work to consume him." Computers aren't just for work and I think a writer would be more likely to have one than most other people.
I just read what I think is one of Dean Koontz' more interesting stories. It isn't a scary thriller but it is science fiction. It's called One Door Away From Heaven. The first 3 chapters of the book are about very different people and you have to wonder how their lives are going to come together. The first chapter introduces Michelina (Micky) Bellsong, recently released from prison and now living with her widowed aunt until she gets on her feet, and her new trailer park neighbor Leilani Klonk, a handicapped and very precocious 9-year-old. Leilani wants nothing more than to be 'normal' and have a life with normal parents. That's hard to do when your mother is drugged out of her mind most of the time and your step-dad is a murderer who hates deformity of any kind. The step-dad is also obsessed with UFOs and aliens and the family is traveling around in a huge motor home visiting places of supposed alien sightings. They've rented a cheap trailer for a week while the motorhome is being repaired.

The second chapter brings us a young boy running for his life after he witnesses the murder of his mother and others. He's making his way through the hostile night forest trying to stay one step ahead of the killers. He's only 10, with no family or friends, and now, he's alone, afraid, and lost.

Noah Farrel appears in chapter 3. He was a cop but was asked to resign after attacking a wife and child beater. His sister was beaten as a child and suffered permanent brain damage. All his money goes to take care of her nursing home bills. He now makes his living as a private investigator.

You can now see what I mean about the different characters. Any of them alone could make a good story but together it's great. The chapters switch back and forth telling their different stories as they all head for the confrontation at the end. I highly reccommend this book.

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Mega Giveaway at Jenn's Bookshelf!

Jenn's Bookshelf is celebrating 200 posts by giving away over 20, yes, over TWENTY, books! The books include:

The Memory Keeper's Daughter
The No. 1 Ladies Detective Agency
Valley of the Dolls
The Bookseller of Kabul
The Mercy of Thin Air
Full of Grace
Under the Tuscan Sun
The Secret Life of Bees
Mrs. Kimble
Living History
A Gift Upon the Shore
Second Glance
A Million Little Pieces
Measure of A Man
Two Old Women
The Time Traveler's Wife
Kite Runner
A Tree Grows in Brooklyn
Son of A Witch
The Sound and the Fury
A Light in August
As I Lay Dying

All of these books will be given to ONE winner! Can you say, "Wow!"? To be entered, comment here. Your email address must be included in the comment or you will be disqualified. Contest ends Friday, May 22. Good luck!

Thursday, May 14, 2009

Win 500 Business Cards!

Reading with Monie is giving 2 readers a chance to win 500 business cards from They have lots of other creative printed products so make sure you check them out. For your chance to win free cards, go here and tell Monie what you would do with your cards. Contest ends May 20 and winners will be contacted via email. One entry per household. Good luck!

Win "Afraid" by Jack Kilborn

Julie at Booking Mama is giving her readers the opportunity to win a copy of Afraid by Jack Kilborn. If you like horror and suspense, this is the book for you. Here's a little bit of info on the story - A small specially trained and mentally programmed military unit is dropped into the small town of Safe Haven and wreaks havoc on this quiet community of 907 full time residents. The military force of sadistic killers methodically adds to the body count as they are focused on finding one specific individual and will do anything, including unrelenting torture, to find him. The only effort to stop them is spearheaded by an elderly part-time police chief, a young firefighter and a single mom. If this sounds like something you'd like to read, head over to Booking Mama and enter today. Julie is giving away 5 copies of the book. Contest ends May 28th at 11:59 p.m. EST. Tweet or blog for extra entries. Good luck!

Wednesday, May 13, 2009

Bird Watching - Warm Weather Version

I'm getting so much enjoyment out of our birdfeeders right now. All of my favorite birds have returned for the summer along with a couple of new ones. Regular visitors are the indigo buntings, goldfinches, cardinals, bluejays, red-winged blackbirds, and just recently, the rose-breasted grosbeaks and brown-headed cowbirds. For about a week we had a rufous-sided towhee. It's an interestingly colored bird with a black head and shoulders, orange sides, and white belly. It's a ground feeder and was fun to watch. I haven't seen it in about a week so it must have just stopped to eat on it's way further north.

Rufous-sided Towhee

Been Keepin' Busy

I know I've been remiss in posting this past week. With Jim off work we've been running around a little more than normal and any nice days we usually spend working around the acreage. It's been raining so often (again today) that it's hard to get things like mowing or gardening done. My box garden is doing so well I really want to put in another. I don't have room in the present one for peppers and I have to have some of those. I could also put in more carrots and later plantings of radishes and lettuce so it doesn't all mature at once. I would love to have sweet corn but with so many raccoons around, it just doesn't make sense. They have a nasty habit of either breaking off the stalks or ruining the ears by taking 2-3 bites out of each one. There are always lots of local vendors with fresh corn but I hate paying their prices.
The tower and the old gate in my garden will support the pole beans I've planted. From left to right I have radishes, carrots (just coming up), onions, peas, tomatoes, and lettuce, then the beans in the back. When the radishes are done I can plant something else there.
I've still been working on trimming brush. I cut out a forsysthia that was about 10 years old and had never really bloomed. I REALLY need to weed my front flower bed or maybe just completely re-do it. It has old-fashioned orange poppies trying to take over it.
Speaking of running around Jim took me to Red Lobster for Mother's Day on Saturday. I had the new Mediterranean grilled shrimp and chicken and it was really good. It came with roasted red potato chunks, fresh asparagus, and of course, their famous cheesy biscuits......yummy! My mom was invited to my niece's for a Mother's Day cookout. We stopped by to see them and give Mom her gifts. I took her a bouquet of lilacs and flowering quince from my yard, 3 books, and a birdhouse gourd I had decorated with violets. Now 2 of my nieces want birdhouses! Guess I'd better get busy and paint some more.

Books I've read this week - McNally's Luck

I read McNally's Luck ©1992 by Lawrence Sanders last week. The story starts out with a cat-napping and Archy McNally is called to investigate. He works with his father, an attorney in Town of Palm Beach, doing undercover investigations. The rich owner of the cat, Harry Willigan, doesn't want the police involved so he asks Archy and his father to help. Archy finds things very suspicious when a neighbor, Lydia Gillsworth, receives threatening letters written on the same paper and in the same style as the cat ransom notes. Her husband, Roderick, comes to the McNally's when his wife says she isn't worried and won't involve the police. She should have been very worried as she soon turns up dead. Archy runs around flirting and making out with all the ladies while he and his police friend, Sergeant Rogoff, put together the clues and solve the crimes. Also involved is a medium who tries to help find the cat and the killer. The story had quite a few twists and turns.

I'm not sure what to think of this author. The writing style made me think the story was taking place in England in the beginning. Imagine my surprise a few pages later to find out it takes place in Florida. The story was written from the perspective of Archy. He was expelled from law school so he works as an investigator helping his father's clients. He's supposed to be a swinging batchelor even though he still lives at home. He drives a red Miata but is fascinated with out-landish clothes (PUCE berets?) and exotic foods. I hate stereotypes, but if he wasn't messing around with the ladies, I would have assumed he was gay. He also likes to use big words which don't really add anything to the story. (Like canard, misanthropic, dilettantish, pulchritude, dryads, osculations, and transmogrified) And at one point, he and a lady are on their way to dinner when a storm comes up. They continue to drive in the open convertible as the rain pours down. Now how believable is that?!

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Win Boneman's Daughter

Bookin' with Bingo has another great giveaway. She has 5 copies of Ted Dekker's new bestseller, Boneman's Daughter to give away. All you have to do to enter is leave a comment and include your email address so she can contact you if you win. You can enter here. Contest ends Thursday, May 21 at 6 p.m. Good luck!

Book info: He's called the BoneMan, a serial killer who's abducted six young women. He's looking for the perfect daughter, and when his victims fail to meet his lofty expectations, he kills them by breaking their bones and leaving them to die. Intelligence officer Ryan Evans has been written out of the lives of his wife and daughter. When BoneMan takes Ryan's estranged daughter as his seventh victim, Ryan goes after BoneMan on his own. But the FBI thinks Ryan himself may be BoneMan. Now the hunter is the hunted, and in the end, only one father will stand.

Books I've read this week - The Memory Keeper's Daughter

I know, I know, I already posted a book this weeek. I just wanted to tell you about this one while it's still fresh in my mind.

I just finished The Memory Keeper's Daughter by Kim Edwards ©2005. I loved this story but it was so sad. It begins in Kentucky in 1964 when bad weather forces Dr. David Henry to deliver his own twins with the assistance of nurse, Caroline Gill. His son is born first and healthy, but after his daughter is born, he instantly recognizes that she has Down's syndrome. His wife is under anesthesia and the doctor makes a life-changing decision, telling his nurse to take the girl to an institution. He later tells his wife the baby was born dead. The nurse goes to the institution but when she sees how deplorable the conditions are, she's unable to leave the baby there. Instead she leaves town, traveling to Pittsburgh, taking the little girl with her. It isn't long before the doctor starts to re-think his decision but his wife sets up a memorial service for their 'dead' daughter without telling him. What can he do now but go along with her?

The wife never really recovers from her daughter's 'death'. The doctor has to live his entire life with the lies that he's told. The son feels gulity that his twin didn't survive. And the nurse always wonders if she did the right thing. This is truly a tragic story but it was told in a very good way. I highly reccommend it.

Monday, May 4, 2009

Wins This Week

I received some past wins in the mail this week along with notification of a new one. I got the business card case that I won on April 21 from J'adore These Stores. It's very small and won't hold much more than a few business and credit cards but it's very nice. It's from The Limited and has a purple and black snakeskin on the outside.

I also got a sweatshirt that I had won back in March from Loaker's All Natural Snacks. I was excited when I won because they let me pick the size I wanted. Most clothing prize wins you just get whatever they send. However, while the shirt is very nice, (it's red and white and zips up the front), the size doesn't run true. It's way to small for me or Jim. It will go to another family member or be donated.

And I got the book The Ballad of West Tenth Street by Marjorie Kernan that I won on april 16 from Confessions of a Real Librarian. I'm looking forward to reading it.

I was very happy to hear I won one of the Romano's Grill gift baskets I posted about here. With Jim laid off, every little bit helps at the grocery store and I'm looking forward to trying the pasta meals. Thank you again, Jersey Bites.

Win the book Kiss

J. Kaye's Book Blog is offering another good book to a reader this week. It's an ARC of Ted Dekker and Erin Healy's Kiss. I've heard Dekker compared to Dean Koontz so this should be a very good book.

Book info - The prologue opens with Shauna McAllister and brother, Rudy, in Dr. Ayers’s office. She is planning to confront her father who is a Senator running for the presidency. After the confrontation, both are in an auto accident. When she awakes from a coma, she has no memory of the past six months. Drugs were found in her car and in her apartment, plus brother has suffered brain damage.The ground work has been laid out for her to start over, but she can’t let the past go. There are too many unanswered questions and she wants to make things right again. What she doesn’t understand is that if she remembers, she’s dead.

If this thriller sounds like something you'd like to read, enter here. Additional entry information on the blog. Winner will not be emailed but will be posted on the blog on May 30. Good luck!

Books I've read this week - Ready-Made Family

Since the weather has warmed up I haven't had as much time for reading. ( Had to get the garden planted and hit the flea market, ya know!) I did read Ready-Made Family by Cheryl Wyatt. This is a Christian romance and not my usual choice . I won the book from Cheryl's blog, It's about a single mother, Amelia North, who gets stranded in the town of Refuge after a car accident. (I thought the name of the town was just a little bit too much) Amelia feels worthless having been disowned by her church after becoming an unwed mother and put down contantly by her father. She has been struggling to raise her daughter for the past 5 years and is on the way to a new job in another state when she wrecks her car. Ben Dillinger, a pararescue jumper, comes to her assistance. Ben helps her get her self-confidence back by treating her as a good Christian should. He falls for her precocious daugher, Reece, and is drawn to Amelia. Guess how it ends. LOL It was an easy read but very predictable.

Thoughts on Recycling

Everywhere you look these days, recycling is thrown in your face. I think basically it's a good idea but if we replace everything we own with 'green' products, where do the older items go? They fill up our landfills and/or ditches. I don't think people should be so quick to get rid of their older items. I think we should use them until they wear out unless they're absolutely the worst energy consumers. Do you really need the latest electronics, bamboo bedding, flooring, or clothing, ? What are you doing with your old things? Some things like reuseable shopping bags and water bottles are great. I see plastic bags all the time caught in trees and weeds and they never degrade. Even the ones that are supposed to be biodegradable only do so when exposed to sunlight and that's not going to happen if they're buried in landfills. So stop and think before getting rid of useable items just to replace them with something 'green'.

Here's something else to think about. If a label says 'recycled paper', people assume that it's been used by consumers, sent to a recycling center, then made into new paper. The only time this is absolutely true is if it's also labeled 'post-consumer'. Otherwise, it may be made from paper cuttings on the mill floor which are added back to the paper pulp and then labeled 'recycled'. This is something paper mills do all the time and it doesn't save any resources. When they label it 'recycled', people think they're helping to save trees. It sounds good and it's perfectly legal.