Monday, August 30, 2010

Summer League Tourny

So, it happened last weekend.  Maybe it's time I talked about the Summer League Ultimate Frisbee tournament.

First things first - It was hot!  We were just beginning to get a second round of real heat.  It wasn't as hot as it was in the middle of the week, but it was still hotter than it had been most of the summer.

We were second seed going into the tournament, so we started out playing the 7th ranked team.  It was a hard fought battle.  We managed to pull it out at the last minute by two points.  Yes, it was that close.

And at that point we had a buy while the other half of the 8 teams played.  I read for a while and then jumped in the pool.  Having access to the pool at Cal Poly (where the tournament was) was certainly a nice bonus this year.

It was just afternoon when we played our semi-final game.  Try as we might, we just couldn't get it together.  We started out behind and stayed that way the entire game.  But I have to hand it to the other team.  They really worked hard for it.  There were a couple of nice lay out catches for scores.

We could have played a third round for 3rd, but I seemed to be the only person interested in that.  So we only got two games in that day.  Personally, I hadn't played that much, so I was ready to go run like crazy.  I also find these games in the losers brackets are more relaxed and fun for me.  But it didn't happen.  Instead, I stayed and jumped in the pool again before watching the men's finals (which went so long they had to move fields) and the first half of the co-ed finals.  I left early to head come for sci-fi night at Joe and Erica's.

All told, it was a fun day, but disappointing.  I would have liked to play more.  And obviously we would have loved to win.

Still, playing in Men's league wasn't nearly as stressful as I feared it would be.  My team was nice and we had fun.  We were all talking about trying to play together again next summer (which won't happen because it's a draft league).  Yes, I'll try to get into co-ed again next year, but it won't be the end of the world if I wind up in Men's.

Saturday, August 28, 2010

Weekly TV Recap for August 28th

Melissa and Joey - Yep, I'm already being reminded why I don't watch too many sitcoms these days. There were funny parts, but I was kinda glad I was home alone while I was watching. Too many awkward sex references/jokes for my tastes. Not ready to give up, but I hope it settles down some soon.

White Collar - This show, on the other hand, gets better every week. I loved having Elizabeth back. She really does add a lot to the show even if she's not usually super involved. And the case was great. I do find it funny that both times Witness Protection has showed up in USA Network shows other than In Plain Sight, the WP Agent has been the bad guy.

Covert Affairs - While this show's got the most sex of anything on the USA Network, it was more restrained than the show on ABC Family. Go figure. Actually, it's more that it didn't feel quite as crude. I still didn't appreciate it, especially when it seemed like Augie is using the reporter for his own purposes. Still, I couldn't help but feel for him when his former girlfriend jumped and left him behind. They are doing a great job with making him real and interesting. When I first learned he'd be blind, I figured he'd stay in his desk most of the time. On the other hand, the sub-plots with the sister are already becoming routine and predictable. Hope they shake things up there soon.

Wipeout - I love Bruiseball. And if Smelly's Boyfriend couldn't win, I'm glad the Birthday Guy did. Wouldn't have minded the movie buff, either. And I loved how they mocked themselves at the end of round two. When someone moved on I didn't recognize, I was wondering who it was. When she almost grapped the final spot, the Johns started mocking that fact, pointing out that we didn't know her, so how it was good she didn't move on since we weren't invested in her. Pretty funny stuff if you ask me.

Psych - They finally hit a weak episode this season. Yes, I laughed a few times. Yes, it was nice to see Chi McBride. Yes, I liked Gus quoting scripture (in fact, those were some of the best laughs). But overall, I thought the episode could have been better. I was glad that Gus' friends weren't killed but that the prisoners just wanted to use them for decoys so they could get away.

You'll notice I don't have Burn Notice or Royal Pains on here. I just haven't had a chance to get to them yet. But since this week was the Summer finale (NO!!!), I'll include them next week.

Friday, August 27, 2010

My Disney Nights

I should have been home the last two nights, attempting to clean my room because I have a potential 3rd roommate who would be sharing the room with me.  But instead I've been out playing and indulging my love of Disney.  And I don't regret it at all.

Wednesday night, I met up with Angelique in Pasadena to see Mary Poppins on the big screen.  She'd found a small chain was showing some Disney classics.  We talked about going to see some others, but this looks to be the only one we'll get to see.  But it was a blast.  Someone who works in the Disney achieves was there, gave us a little trivia about the film, and then asked a couple of trivia questions.  Of course, I got one of them correct.

Not only was it fun to see the movie on the big screen, but it was fun to see it with people who love the film.  Yes, we were laughing at all the right moments, but the energy in the theater was just awesome.  It was so much more fun than it would have been just sticking the DVD in the player at home.  I really wish I could have gone to see Pete's Dragon last week.

Last night was a blog meet up from The Disney Parks Blog around the new California Adventure World of Color show.  I actually left work at 3 to get there on time.  While I got there in plenty of time, I did take two hours to get down there thanks to the traffic.  Still, that gave me time to wander around Downtown Disney, pin browse, and buy a new Lego key chain (the alien from Toy Story.)

When Angelique got there, we checked into the event (which was free to those who RSVP'd quickly when the post went up on the blog, that was the only way we could get in.)  That's when we found out that part of the event was a park ticket.  I figured they were going to herd us from one thing to another and then escort us out of the park at the end.  That thrilled us since we haven't been to a Disney park since February.  I've driven by with every mud run I've done, but I haven't actually been on Disney property.

Anyway, the event started with a presentation on the show from three of the VP's responsible for getting it off the lagoon, so to speak.  Since Angelique and I hadn't seen it yet, some of the discussion didn't mean much to us, although watching video from the orchestra recording the score or the early concepts for the show was still fun.

From there, they took us over to watch the show.  It wasn't as close as I thought it would be, and Angelique and I were in the back of a crowd.  But we managed to find good places to look through.  And for the price (free) we certainly weren't complaining.

The show is pretty amazing.  Yes, they project stuff on water like they do for Fantasmic.  Yes, it's a water laser show.  But it's pretty spectacular when you are standing there watching it for half an hour.

That was the end of the official activities, so Angelique and I decided to take advantage of our free ticket.  We started by pin shopping.  I bought a couple.  Okay, okay, I spent more than I should have.  But they've got all these great limited edition pins for the 55th anniversary, and we haven't been pin shopping since February.  When we were done with that, we grabbed a fast pass for Tower of Terror, then went on the Monster's Inc. ride.  For a laugh, we decided to check on the wait time for Soarin' and discovered it was only 15 minutes, so we had to ride that.  Then it was back to Tower of Terror before heading to the World of Disney store and our cars.

I had figured we'd be leaving the park by 9:30, do a little shopping, and be in our cars by 10:30.  Instead, we closed the park down at 11 and didn't get back to our cars until midnight.  Yep, I didn't get to bed until 2 this morning.

Tonight, it's time to tackle my room, and try to get a little sleep.  Tomorrow morning I'm off to a bachelor party all day.  At some point, I really do need to clean up my room.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Word Association for August 25th

Yep, it's time for this week's word association.

  1. Leads :: Follow
  2. Concierge :: Practice
  3. Thousand :: Island Dressing
  4. Engines :: Car
  5. Argument :: Take Sides
  6. 2006 :: 4 years ago
  7. Knot :: Untie
  8. Handsome :: Prince
  9. Ridge :: Canyon
Yes, I did take out one unnecessary word this week.
As to concierge practice, I bet you'd never guess I was a Royal Pains fan, would you?  :)

Tuesday, August 24, 2010

My Nightstand - August 2010 Edition

I'd completely forgotten today was the fourth Tuesday of the month until I wandered by 5 Minutes for Books this morning.  Where has the month gone?  But since it is, that's means it is time for this months' What's on Your Nightstand.

Just last night, I finished up Tied In, a book I was sent for review by the editor, Lee Goldberg.

This book is a collection of essays by members of IAMTW, International Association of Media Tie-In Writers.through mostly personal stories, we get a very clear picture of what it takes to write a tie-in novel.

Now if you are wondering what a tie-in novel is, it's anything written based on a TV show, movie, video game, or some other franchise in another medium.  Personally, I really enjoy these books, so I loved getting a glimpse into what it takes to write them.  We're talking short deadlines and input from not just the editor but also the person who holds the rights to the franchise.

But I also got a real sense that these authors love what they do.  They are often fans as well, so they work hard to create something they would enjoy as fans.  Frankly, that always comes through to me in the best of the tie-ins I've read.

I really do recommend this book is you enjoy these books or want to learn more about what goes into writing them.

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Weekly TV Recap for August 21st

Another week of great episodes.

Melissa & Joey - Believe it or not, I used to watch a lot of sitcoms. But it got to the point where I wasn't finding too many that didn't deal almost exclusively with sex and double meanings. I'm a huge Melissa Joan Hart fan, so I had to give her new sitcom on ABC Family a try. And, it's filled with talk about sex and double meanings. But I did find it funny, especially her sparring with Joey Lawrence. I'm planning to keep watching, at least for now.

White Collar - Talk about an episode designed to tug at your heart strings. Man, from the first moment I saw that mother and her kid, I wanted her to go free. But the interesting path along the way with the poker game was tons of fun. And I'm quite curious to know what that tape with Kate on it is all about. I couldn't quite understand what all she said, but they really piqued my interest with that.

Covert Affairs - I kept having to remind myself that the chief of staff wasn't an innocent victim in the proceedings because I started to feel very sorry for her. But really, she had to deal with the consequences of her actions in the end just like the Senator and his wife did. I'm just glad that the Annie's brother-in-law was only hiding a lost job. I'd like at least one person's love life on that show to not be complicated.

Wipeout - I loved the quote they had during the opening of the show. "Giving birth is easier than this." And I must say I am enjoying the show so much more now that it is on only one night a week.

Psych - Shawn and Gus in 30 years (or so). That episode was a hoot. I knew the old police chief wasn't involved in anything shady. But the real fun was watching Shawn and Gus interacting with the retired police detectives who were them in 30 years. Just could not stop laughing.

Burn Notice - There were some great lines in the show tonight like, "Insanity is one of our specialties," or "Beach is that way. Go stick your head in the sand." But that final scene had my heart racing. I knew nothing would happen to Fi, but I can't wait to see next week's episode to see how they are going to leave us hanging for a few months. Fortunately, they've already announced that part two of the season will air starting in November.

Royal Pains - I have no idea where they are going with Dr. Peck. Is she still playing them or is she becoming a nice character? And while we're on the questions, is Divya really going to go through with her wedding? They'd better figure out a way to keep her around because I love her character. And what is the Lawson father up to? I know it's nothing good that will impact the characters for the rest of the season, but what is it? It's going to be a long wait until part two of the season airs in January.

Friday, August 20, 2010

Winding Down Summer League Regular Season

So, it's also been several weeks since I've posted about ultimate Frisbee.  And my team has continued to win.  This week is the last week of the regular season, and we finished 6-5.  Just to recap, at one point, we were 0-5.  Then we won six straight games in a row.  Just how crazy is that?  Even crazier is the fact that our last four games were against teams we had previously lost to.

Granted, all of our losses were by two or three points except for our last one.  That loss was something like 13-17.  We played that team again on Tuesday night.  We both had 9 people show up.  And we won 17-6.  Again, how crazy is that?

I'm still not sure I've been contributing too much to the team.  Last week, I was thrown the disc twice.  I caught it both times, but threw it away once and connected with someone else once.  This last week I dropped it both times it was thrown to me (once in the end zone).  Both times, I let me defender get into my head.  I should have been able to catch them.

But on the defense side, I don't feel like I've been the let down that I could have been.  Yes, I've been scored on, but no more than normal.  As usual, my team is pretty good at matching me up well on defense.

Yes, I'm still the slow guy on the field, but I've had as much fun as I always do playing ultimate Frisbee.  I'm sorry to see the season end.  And I would definitely play men's league again, although first choice will remain co-ed.

This Sunday is the tournament that ends the season.  We go into the tourney in second place (with a 6-5 record.  Just how crazy is that?)  There are two other teams with our exact record.  The first place team has only lost two games, both of them to the last place team.  And those two square off in the first game of the season.  Usually at these tournaments, you have a feeling that certain teams will go further than others (although my team proved that wrong by making it to the finals a couple years ago).  This year?  I honestly have no idea what will happen.  It will be interesting to see how it all shakes out come Sunday.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

Book Memes for August 20th

Wow, it's been three weeks since I've done these, thanks to vacation and recovering from vacation.  Let's get back in the swing of things, okay?

This week's book is one I actually finished last night.  Brush with Death is a great read.  It's the third in the series about an art forger turned faux finisher.

For Page Turners' Book Beginnings on Friday, we'll start with the first sentence.  Okay, okay, I'm doing the first paragraph.

The sweet faced boy, one arm curled around his cocker spaniel pupy, paid no attention to the swaying and bobbing of the sagging helium balloons hear the doorway.  Fluffy brown teddy bears, shiny toy trucks, and wooden alphabet blocks lay at his feet, but Louis spencer didn't notice them.  He never would.

That opening paragraph definitely made me want to keep reading.  (And don't worry, our heroine is looking at a statue in a cemetary.)

And now, for the Friday 56, we've got sentence 5 from page 56.

Except for a brief mention of my grandfather's 1966 scam, there was nothing about known forgeries of La Fornarina.

Okay, so that sentence was all that great this time.  But you can't win them all, right?

Word Association for August 19th

Here's this week's word association.

  1. Rhythm :: Drums
  2. Baby :: Cute
  3. Sanctimonious :: Proud
  4. I like :: Disney
  5. Constipated :: Unhappy
  6. Sleep late :: Saturday
  7. Over easy :: Eggs
  8. Erratic :: Random
  9. Umbrella :: Rain
  10. You don’t :: Get It

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Waiting on Wednesday for August 18th

I haven't done a Waiting on Wednesday for a while, so how about today?

Of course, I guess I'm cheating a little here since NERDS: M is for Momma's Boy by Michael Buckley is already shipping even though its official launch date isn't until September. 

Here's the only official book synopsis I can find:

NERDS combines all the excitement of international espionage with all the awkwardness of elementary school, and the results are hilarious. A group of unpopular fifth graders run a spy network from inside their school. With the help of cutting-edge science, they transform their nerdy qualities into incredible abilities! Their enemies? An array of James Bond–style villains, each with an evil plan more diabolical and more ridiculous than the last.

So I don't know much about the plot of this book.  But I read the first one last year and loved it.  I can't wait to get my hands on this one and enjoy.

Saturday, August 14, 2010

Weekly TV Recap for August 14th

Yeah, I missed last week due to being on vacation.  I've watched two weeks worth of TV this week.  How do I do it during the regular TV season?  I normally watch that much TV during a week, but I could barely keep up this week?  Anyway, I'm just talking about this week's show because the others are so last week.

White Collar - Neal as hit man. I've got to admit that was a fun premise for the show. The actual plot was a bit ordinary, although the twist of the villain haven't a fake ID was lots of fun. What I really liked were the scenes between Sarah, Neal, and Peter. There were some great one liners in there. Oh yeah, and when does Elizabeth come back full time again? I miss her.

Covert Affairs - Okay, so how cool is it that President Logan from 24 is Suresh from Heroes' dad? Only in TV Land, although they do have an explanation in the show involving his mother. I had just been thinking they hadn't done anything with Annie's ex for a while, and suddenly he was a huge part of the episode. I really do wonder where they are going with that.

Wipeout - I must admit I was surprised that the Black Belts from Hawaii didn't make it further. But I was rooting for the board gamers the entire time. I was thrilled they won. I remember them not letting people go beyond 20 minutes in the wipeout zone on an episode earlier this season, so I was surprised they didn't stop the daughter at that point. Not that it would have mattered. The Board Gamers easily beat the other team.

Psych - So I'm a little unclear on why the one woman was going by a different name, but over all it was an enjoyable episode. Of course, I always love watching Shawn and Lassiter go at it, and there was plenty of that.

Burn Notice - The prison part of the episode was okay. I mean, there was a reason I didn't watch Prison Break. I just don't care for the truth about prison stuff. And it's why I plan to stay far away from it. But I am very intrigued by the twist with who burned Michael and why. Is he now working directly for the guy who burned him or did Simon plant that for another reason? I can't wait to find out.

Royal Pains - Please tell me there will be some episodes in January. If they really mean there are only two episodes left, I can't stand to wait until next June for more. I'm curious about why Divya had such a guilty conscious after her night at the hospital. I want to know where Hank and Jill are going to go. I am very concerned about what Eddie R. Lawson is up to and how it involves Boris. But my biggest surprise is how much I have come to like Evan this year. They have really matured him. Yes, he's still a goofball much of the time, but he isn't just the idiot character any more. I like that. And I think I really like Paige. I certainly liked her showing up with all those people at the end (although I saw that coming a ways away). I'm not going to like it when they break them up.

New TV on DVD Reviews:
Heroes - Season 4

Thursday, August 12, 2010

And Trixie Camp....

Let's see how much of the rest of my trip I can get through.

Just in case you haven't heard me talk about the Trixie Belden series before, it's a series of kids mysteries like the Hardy Boys or Nancy Drew, only better.  I found it in jr. high and still love them.  I hang out at a couple of message boards for the series, and once a year we have a get together for fans of the series (and their families) that we call Trixie Camp.

While camp started on Thursday, my time with Trixie friends started Wednesday night.  Matt was nice enough to agree to have dinner with a Trixie friend who wasn't going to be able to make it to camp, so we met up with Karen.  Ironically, this is actually the second time Matt has met one of my Trixie friends.  And he even put up with some of our Trixie talk.  It was a lovely time, and the two hours (three hours?) flew by all too quickly.

During dinner, I had a "Duh!" moment.  A friend of Matt's was supposed to drive me to Circleville, Ohio on Thursday, but it dawned on me that some of the people going to Camp would probably be driving through the area.  Using Facebook and a two year old cell phone list, I was able to get in touch with two such parties, one that was leaving from only 15 minutes away.  The other got stuck in traffic, so I was glad to leave with the first party.

Circleville is about half an hour south of Columbus, and we arrived in the later part of the afternoon.  We had enough time to check into the hotel and get situated before it was time to carpool over to Marsha's farm for dinner.  That's right, our brave coordinator started out by hosting all of us on her farm.  We had a great time catching up with old friends and meeting new ones face to face.  I hadn't been to Trixie Camp for a couple of years, so there were some people I hadn't met face to face yet, and I will admit I spent parts of the weekend trying to match name with message board user name with face.  Someday I will be good with faces and names, really.  Thursday ended with a trip to the hotel pool before going to bed.

Friday morning we started out by shopping.  We went to a local souvenir store and a store that makes and sells it's own chocolates.  Believe it or not, I was excited about this since Marsha's sister had written a book set in Circleville, so I just had to get as much Pumpkin Show stuff as I could.

Our next stop was an ice rink.  I haven't been ice skating in 20+ years, so I wasn't sure how I would do.  I was a bit shaky at first, but I got more comfortable as our hour went on.  I still wasn't crossing one foot over the other to turn, but it was fun.  And I didn't fall once, although I did come close a couple of times.

Our final stop of the day was the Ohio State Fair.  Yes, my second fair in a week after years of not going to any fair.  Anyway, I spent most of the afternoon hanging out with Nick, a teen who has been coming to Trixie Camp with his mom for 8 years now.  We both wanted to hit the rides, and we had a blast doing it, although both of us were feeling pretty woozy by the time we were done.

And I finally got to try Chocolate Covered Bacon.  A couple years back, I goaded Katrina over at Callapidder Days into giving it a try, and I've felt slightly hypocritical about not trying it myself.  So when I found out they offered it for sale, I had to try it.  It was...interesting.  I'm not a big bacon fan to begin with, but it was so soggy that it took away some of the enjoyment for me.  I think I would have enjoyed it better if it were crispy.  It wasn't bad, but it also wasn't something I feel the need to do ever again.  I was just glad I'd found it since I'd made a big deal about planning to try it, and I'd been looking all day but never seen it.  I finally found it just before he had to leave.

After we got back to the hotel, we had a little down time before a pizza party and Trixie trivia contest.  We made up the questions as a team and then other teams had to try to answer them.  I was on Team Honey (my favorite character), and we came in last (unless we were using golf scoring).  But we had the most fun!

Saturday started bright and early (like 7AM).  Our first stop was the Hocking River so we could go canoeing.  Again, I teamed up with Nick.  It was a 5 mile trip down a pretty slow moving river.  It was relaxing and fun.  I wish I could do stuff like that more often.  Of course, the various water fights we got into added to the fun.

We had a picnic lunch at the Hocking Hills State Park, and then explored some.  The area was beautiful with a small stream flowing through a canyon.  Really enjoyed it.

Our last stop of the day was Tecumseh!, an outdoor drama about one of the Indians involved in Tippecanoe, an Indian/settler fight in Ohio.  We got a backstage tour and a wonderful buffet dinner before the show.  The stage was amazing with several ledges, a giant sand area for the main stage, and even a pond big enough for boats and swimmers.  They fire canons and guns multiple times.  It's really something else to see.

Unfortunately, Sunday was the end, and time for me to come home.  I left Ohio at 1, had a layover in Dallas (I was flying American after all), and got in around 5:15.  From there, I had to try to unpack and get organized to get back to work Monday morning.

Let me tell you, this week has been extra hard.  I had such a great trip (three posts worth) that it's been hard to concentrate on my job.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Word Association for August 11th

Let's take a quick break from the vacation log and do this week's word association.

  1. Coma :: Sleep
  2. Aristotle :: Philosophy
  3. Pink eye :: Sick
  4. Expensive :: Watch
  5. Dancer :: Singer
  6. Lipstick :: Red
  7. Buffer :: Zone
  8. Stilettos :: Heels
  9. Booming :: Voice
  10. Rap :: Sheet

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

Off to Northern Kentucky (Vacation Report 2)

I left Dallas Tuesday morning and headed to Northern Kentucky.  I flew into the Cincinnati airport, which isn't in Ohio.  See the things you can learn traveling?

My good friend Matt lives there.  He moved there in 2005, and we've only gotten to see each other a couple of times since.  As soon as I learned that Trixie Camp was going to be in Ohio, I started planning a couple of days to see Matt.

Tuesday night, we hit the Boone County Fair.  I haven't been to a fair in literally years, but this one was small considering the fair I grew up attending.  We hung out with a couple of his friends, mainly visiting the figure 8 riding lawnmower races and the food booths.  We did wander around the rest of it, however.

Wednesday, we spent the day at the Creation Museum.  Matt works there, so I could get the inside scoop on everything there.  And it is very impressive.  I enjoyed both the planetarium shows.  And there is lots to see in the various exhibits.

I've followed Creation science for years, so there wasn't a whole lot there to surprise me, although a couple things said struck me differently.  It was great to see all this stuff laid out in a museum, however, instead of the normal evolution presented in most museums.

Of course, if you go and don't believe Creation, it will only help you if you have an open mind.  There is no big "A Ha!" moment that will change your mind.  But I liked the fact that they discuss world views and not only the consequences but also the way that world view impacts how you view the same set of facts.

Matt is committed to his work there.  Wednesday was his day off, but as soon as he got there, he put on his walkie-talkie.  Over the course of the day, he did take care of some stuff, although I still felt like I got to see just about everything.  Plan a full day there, you'll need it.

Monday, August 09, 2010

Vacation Post the First - Dallas Leg

So you might have noticed my blog was a little more silent than normal this last week.  That's because I was on vacation.  I was all over the place and had an awesome time.  I'll be covering it in multiple posts, three at a minimum, but probably more.  And we'll start at the very beginning.  (I hear it's a very good place to start.)

On Saturday the 31st, I left home for Dallas, Texas.  I hadn't seen my niece since my brother's graduation in May, so it was time for a visit, right?  I thought so, anyway.

I had the worst time with luggage on my trip here.  It took my almost an hour to check in, and it took them an hour to get my bag to me after my flight.  Fortunately, the rest of the trip wasn't like this.

Anyway, everyone was waiting for me when I got to baggage claim.  And my niece was being so cute right from the start.  She's a great walker, although she'll still crawl some.  After my bag finally game, we headed to Sweet Tomato (I know it better as Souplantation) for dinner.

Sunday was up for church, and then my brother and sister-in-law had a first birthday party for my niece.  It was small, just a few friends and me.  My niece usually goes down for a nap not too long after church, but she was a trooper, staying up until after she had her cake (which she loved) and opened presents.  That night, we went out with the youth for dinner.

Monday was a relaxing day around the house.  We did go out for an early dinner/late lunch and to grab some snacks for a movie.  That night, we went to see Inception.  They liked the movie, I was okay with it, but that's about all.  And my niece?  She stayed home with a babysitter.

This was the first visit where I was the only visiting family, and it was very nice to have the time with my niece to myself.  Yeah, she was playing shy a bit.  She's play with me for a while, then go hide behind Mommy or Daddy and keep peaking out at me.  I don't think she was really worried about me since she didn't start that until Sunday.  But there were some times where the two of us were able to play together quite a bit.  And she brought me a couple of her books to read to her.  Not that she likes to sit still for a book that much, but it was still fun.

Yes, Uncle Mark is still wrapped around her little fingers.  I can't wait to go back and see her again.

Tuesday morning, I left for the next leg of my trip, but that's another post.

Thursday, August 05, 2010

What Else I Read in July

Since I didn't talk a lot about books, my list is a little long this month.

All ratings are on a scale from 1 (bad) to 5 (great).

RUN AFOUL by Joan Druett - 2
Wiki Coffin gets caught up in a murder just before the Exploration Expedition docks in Brazil in 1838. And once in the harbor, the expedition runs into his father, literally. This book got so bogged down in the history and historical detail that it forgot all about the mystery, which was actually pretty easy to solve. It's the third in a series, and disappointing after the first two.

TALES FROM THE HOOD by Michael Buckley - 5
The Grimm family is on the edge of finally freeing Sabrina and Daphne's parents from the sleeping spell they are under. Meanwhile, their friend the Big Bad Wolf is being tried for his crimes. This entire series is lots of fun, and it provides some nice twists to the familiar fairy tale characters. Aimed at kids, any adult will enjoy it.

STORK RAVING MAD by Donna Andrews - 4.5
Meg is eight and a half months pregnant with twins, but that doesn't stop her from investigating when a member of Michael's tenure committee is killed in their overcrowded house. This book wasn't as funny as some of the earlier books in the series, but it was still amusing. And the mystery was great as always.

MR. MONK IS CLEANED OUT by Lee Goldberg - 4
When Monk is fired by the SFPD, Natalie tries to find them both jobs. Meanwhile, Monk is obsessed with proving a man under house arrest for his ponzi scheme is also guilty of murder. The set up was a bit too familiar since it was also used a couple of books ago. A few of the characters also seemed over the top. Minor complaints in another great tie in novel.

HOW TO CRASH A KILLER BASH by Penny Warner - 4
Thanks to Penny, I got an ARC of this book, due out next week. Presley Parker is hosting a murder mystery to raise money for San Francisco's de Young museum when the play's victim dies in real life. The final quarter seemed a little bumpy with Presley being over shocked by things I thought were obvious. The climax still surprised me and kept me turning the pages.

Sunday, August 01, 2010

Word Association for August 1st

Let's start out the month with this week's word association.

  1. Sexting :: Ugh
  2. Corrected :: Text
  3. Rewind :: Video Tape
  4. Heard :: Rumor
  5. Amazon :: Books
  6. Running :: with Scissors
  7. Illegal :: Parking
  8. Tracked :: Criminal
  9. Generate :: Random
  10. Towel :: Shower