Thursday, September 27, 2007

Another one bites the dust

This year I made myself the promise to read atleast 2 books each month.
However, my choices have sometimes made this a difficult promise to keep.

My latest book was read on the plane rides to and from Knoxsville, Tennessee this past weekend.

Daughters of Eden
By Charlotte Bingham
538 pages

The story is centered around 4 women at the start of World War II. Each is selected by a man named Jack Ward because he recognizes special traits that he believes with help with the cause. The ladies become part of the spying effort of WWII at Eden Park. There is Petunia, the quiet lady who loves her books, married badly and thinks herself a wallflower. Lily, the boy crazy girl who sees herself wilting away stuck with these girls. Kate, the talent girl whose father sees her as a burden and won't let her grow anymore in her education and talent. And then there is Majorie, the girl who had nothing, and no one..who finally had a family, only to have them taken away for unknown reasons.

The flow of these lives is elequant. And you are transported into the fearful and exciting time of Hitler, Chamberlain, and Churchill. There is success and loss.

My only complaint of the whole book is the ending. It happens way too quickly. It feels like everything is rushed and needs to be tied up with a neat little bow. Instead of satisfied and complete, the ending left me wanting more.

Overall, I would recommend this book. Especially if you are a history buff like me.
Nothing better than history and romance rolled up into one book.

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

Its a Wooly Ghoul Time

With September comes cool/crisp mornings, darker evenings, apples, starting of school and schedules, and holidays. The main holiday of choice next to Christmas is Halloween.
Who doesn't like halloween? A time to scare yourself and others. A time to have fun and be a child for a day. Dressing up. Trick or treating. And of course it is time for the Boo-ty Swap

I stumbled upon this swap by accident last year and had a great time spoiling another Halloween lover like myself. Pleasantly I was extended an invitation to join in the fun again and jumped at the opportunity. Today we were awarded our "secret pals" and mine has requested a wish list of ideas to help with her task.

Telling people what I want has always been a difficult task due to the fact that if I feel I need something I usually go out and get it...LOL
But in trying to fulfull this request I can give a general list of things I like.

I love soft wools and unusual textures or blends.
I love vibrant colors...especially anything fall, red, rust, oranges.
I love novelty wools...the unusual type that have pieces of wool, fabric or beads woven into it.
I love small project that are completed quickly.
I love all crafts of any kind.
I have always wanted to try a project that included beads with knitting.
I love knitting books, cookbooks, or books of any kind to be quite honest.
I love teas...mainly herbal...for the cool nights ahead.
I have started a collection of bamboo needles but also own a couple turbo addis.
I love candles with scents of cinnamon and apple spice.
I collect angels to the point of obsession.

And most of all I am thrilled to have a secret pal be part of my life.
Hope this helps :-)

Sunday, September 16, 2007

Christmas Around the World

I am a huge sucker for Christmas. This is the one season that tugs at my heartstrings year round. And its not just the gifts! I love the sentiment of putting others first. I love the smells of cinnamon, evergreen and cloves. I love the sounds of bells chiming and carols being sung. I love the sappy movies that go along with Christmas and brotherly love. Its a Wonderful Life. Miracle on 34th Street. The Santa Clause.

With this in mind I decided to join the Christmas around the World swap. What could be more up my alley...LOL

Here is my questionaire for my swapping partner.

Are you religious? Spiritual more than an organized religion

How long have you been knitting? Would you consider yourself a Beginner, Intermediate or Advanced? I have been knitting since I was 7 when my grandmother told me all girls needed to know the basics. (35 years) My knitting life since has be both obsessive and non-existant...just depends on the time in my life and the season.

Do you have any other hobbies besides knitting? Almost any handicraft you can think of...cross-stitch, scrapbooking, beading, crocheting, painting and the list goes on

Favorite color(s)? Love vibrant true colors but my favorite is red

Do you collect anything? Angels..especially if they have expressive faces

Are you allergic to any fibers or animals? itchy wools and smoke

Do you have any pets? Yes dog, cats and hamster

Coffee, Tea, or Hot Chocolate? Herbal or green tea, flavored coffees

Cookies or Sweets? Like both...its my weakness next to wools

Do you knit socks? Have made 2 pairs. Not an obsession but I enjoy a simple pattern

If not socks then what? (tell us about your favorite knits) I am a sucker for novelty wool. Each September I check out the new types and knit up a few scarves. My collection is endless....LOL

Do you put up a Christmas tree? If not then what do you do? Absolutely. We have our big one in the livingroom and our smaller version in our family room. I am Christmas obsessive.

Favorite holiday treats? Gingerbread tea or coffee, Cinnamon candies, apple cider

Favorite holiday smells? Fresh stuffing being made, turkey baking, cinnamon, cloves, fresh baking

Do you celebrate Christmas in a traditional or unconventional way? Please elaborate.
We are a traditional gift christmas eve, stockings in the morning and then gifts followed by crepes and strawberries for breakfast and turkey for dinner. We try to stay home for Christmas eve, christmas and boxing day. Days before and after we share with extended family...often travelling a bit. Family means a lot to me.

What are your favorite holiday traditions? Family breakfast after gift opening. Chosing the one new ornament for each family member each year. Re-reading the christmas classics. Listening to music. Putting up the tree with my daughter.

Finish the sentence: “For me Christmas is all about....” family

If you were a Christmas ornament you would be…….? an angel

What was your favorite gift you've ever received? Or given? Given - afghan I made the three grandmothers to keep them warm ( have my grandmother's now that she has passed. Received - an angel necklace my husband got me the christmas after my son passed.

When do you start your Christmas? December 1st because hubby insists nothing should go up sooner...but occassionally I start slipping things out before.

Do you send Christmas cards? Do you make them or buy them? If I remember I send them out...usually comical bought cards. Would be fun to try homemade this year

What is your favorite Christmas dish? My grandmother's homemade sage stuffing

Carolers are at your door. What do you do? Haven't seen carolers in ages. I remember singing carols door to door as a kid and getting cookies or something hot to drink at people's homes

When do you open presents? Christmas eve or Christmas morning? One on Christmas eve and the rest on Christmas morning

Do you celebrate with family or friends or both? Depends from year to year...always family and sometimes friends are included

Can't wait for this swap to begin....Merry Christmas all.

Tea Swap 3

Its difficult to believe that another 3 months has flown by and I haven't been saying a word. Its like I have become a hermit. Stuck in my own whirlwind of activity which leaves little or no time for my blog.

A great way to come out of the silence is with a huge thank you to Emy for the fabulous package she sent to me for our Knitters tea swap 3. I was beyond thrilled to be paired with a lady from Singapore and I was not disappointed.

Firstly she sent me 6 balls of luscious yarn. 4 are tomato red (leaning towards an orange) cotton and 2 are a varigated pink/white bamboo blend. I have never used bamboo blends before and I am very much looking forward to the experience.

Secondly was the teas and sweets. Wow Emy you outdid yourself!
She sent mem - a box of green tea
- 2 packages of Milo nuggets by nestle ( they are a chocolate malted candy...reminds me a lot of my favorite easter treat!
- Eark Grey mix hard candies ( my daughter says YUM!)
- Another bag of hard candies ( my daughter says Double Yum!!)
- a package of Longan Meat
- a package of dried Sweet Prunes
- a package of seedless red dates
- a package of Qi Zi Wolfberries
and lastly a letter with instructions on how to make my own brews of tea with these ingredients.

I am so looking forward to try new teas and enjoying the treats.

Once again thank you so much Emy for making this swap so much fun.