Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Two Blog Awards!

I recently got this award again from two great bloggers. Go check them out!
Planet Books: Your World Wide Online Book Club
Seriously...I just saw this post on her site and my stomach is rumbling. Mmmm.
Stephanie...I love your blog and I desperately want to watch the Lost in Austen series too. If you figure it out, let me know!

I read WAY too many blogs but here's just a few that consistenly make my day:

Heather at Age 30 - A Year of Books

Katherine (fellow New Yorker) at A Girl Walks Into a Bookstore

Emily (fellow New Yorker) at books, the universe, and everything

Book Chronicles who I think has an impressive "to-read" stack

Lisa at Books.Lists.Life who gives great advice

FyreFly's Book Blog (I love your blog header)

Monniblog who's cat cracks me up

Trish at Hey Lady! Whatcha Readin'?

Brainella the Librarian

Bree at The Things We Read

Nymeth at Things Mean a Lot who's just plain awesome

Azull at Through the Eyes of Me who's making me want to get a pumpkin spice latte

Jill at Under the Dresser who has a great blog title, sense of humor, and will be coming to NYC

Andi at Tripping Toward Lucidity: Estella's Revenge

The first two blogs I started reading:

Confessions of a Real Librarian
Click. The Good News

And last but not least...

Dennis's Diary of Destruction who I'll never give a pillow to but who kicks hedjhog army butt

**Note: Ok that really wasn't a "short" list...I know I read too many blogs.

Here's a link to my other favorite "non-book" blogs.

Charlie's Hideout

Can you spot him?

The Zeiss PhotoScope

The next thing in digiscoping? We'll see!

"Coinciding with the 2008 photokina, Carl Zeiss is once again demonstrating its innovation leadership in the field of digital imaging with sports optics products and is presenting a completely new product concept with the PhotoScope™ 85 T* FL."

Link: PhotoScope 85 Specifications from Zeiss

Link: PhotoScope Demostration (YouTube)

Feeling Blue? GREAT!

Benjamin Moore's Paddington Blue # 791

A friend of mine just moved into a new apartment and was asking me for advice! Yay! She has lots of dark wood furniture and doesn't want pink to be involved in the color scheme (I know, crazy right?). I suggested blue to her and she loved the idea of the rich dark browns and contrasting blues. Also add in some sandy browns or pale golds for accents! Here are some fun blue interiors that I found.

A tranquil bedroom from Dominio Mag.

I love this facade. LOVE.

A blue color scheme with a pale yellow wall from Domino Mag.

A Markham Roberts Dining room. Beautiful.

Blue hallway.

From Domino, Nick Olson designed this living room with bold blues and yellows.

Alicia B.

I'm Kinda Smitten...

with this awfully cute (and ├╝ber stylish) family via 2 or 3 things...

The Morning

"You get to the morning and the poison leaks away, doesn't it?"

-- David Caravaggio from The English Patient

It was a breezy morning at the prairie. Lincoln's Sparrows, Sedge Wrens, and Common Yellowthroats were hunkered low in the thicket, but the incredible scenic views were worth preserving. For me, landscape photography can be as enjoyable as photographing birds and it's especially rewarding when elements come together to form appealing composition of light, angles, shape, and depth. With everything that's been going on in the news, it can be challenging to stay focused on things that can make a difference in our wellness. I think about those who are in such economic dire straights that getting outside and visiting with nature isn't even an option for them. I guess I should feel lucky. To the wrens, sparrows, and warblers, there's simply no such thing as a $700 billion bailout. On this crisp day of fall migration, they went on about their regular activities as they have for hundreds of generations. Idle before a stand of asters, under a canopy of wispy clouds, the concerned face of a tiny sedge wren popped out from the purple flowers to check me out. Laugh if you like, but if that can't take the poison away, I honestly don't know what can!

© 2008 Mike McDowell

Guest Review - The Bestiary

Seconds, well, seconds disappearing before They come back, Them, Those, They that reside within, gone for the time being. Keep up, tolerate short choppy sentences, fragments, brevity.

New book, “Beastiary”, Nicholas Christopher;
Her shelf, creeped title, thin, grab, run, late.

Dog-eared pages, re-read, still pertinent?
Importance, relevance, interesting, provoking, motivating, identify.
Twice, three hundred seven pages.

Read, four days.
Strove to steal extra minutes.
Balanced fiction, driven by plot, point, and what happens next.

!!breathe in!! boy develops fascination with mythological animals based on allegory and family ties that he follows throughout life as a semi mid-upper classed and fortunate individual with limitless capacity for knowledge jealously spending dump-truck loads of hours indulging in research in Timeless European cities putting together the path a tome that does or does not exist has taken since Noah boarded his ark and shut the big wooden doors written by an author that thankfully stops reiterating proper educated past Scholar’s and Adventure’s who searched for this book of beasts have met mostly dire and occasionally deathful circumstances while evolving the character’s love for animals into a more tangible product all without the time-tested and typical thick layer of mush and managing to still tie up subtle unrealized and unrecognized loose ends into a nice, lively, readable and pleasantly enjoyable fictional diversion from the standard murder mystery formulated novels concluding in… !!ah, out of breath…!!

Pages, Dog –eared
Quote: “To be saved from folly, Atlas, you need either kind friends or fierce enemies.” (p65)

Second: much to much to explain here, minutes to go, whistle, train is coming.
Cause and the ripple effect, food chain, extinction, bigger picture is over-whelming,
phrases such as “… spend my life writing postmortems- or obituaries…” and “…human race… animals extinct… dry run.” (all page 130)

Ending, note
Footsteps on the stairs;
gaining volume.
Anxious, apprehensive I have to leave.
I will not fight them tonight.

“Bestiary” not Beastiary... recently realized.

Posted by Reviewer Number Five


Rachel featured Marcus Walters’ very cool work today, and I was immediately struck by this piece as it perfectly represents almost every conversation we have with Audrey of late.

Yes friends, we’ve officially entered the “why?” phase. It’s actually quite endearing…although it’s just started, so check back with me in a month.

Tuesday's List

image by polly wreford vi jackie’s blog sweetie pie pumpkin noodle

All this week, along with my normal posts, Amy and I will feature lists from Friday's adventure!

Today’s list belongs to the lovely Jackie

27 Things I want to Do Before I'm 28

  1. Start a gratitude journal
  2. Plant an herb and veggie garden (I really like the Square Foot Gardening method)
  3. Buy a dress pattern for the girls, learn to read it and sew up some dresses!
  4. Take girls to the library at least once a week
  5. Create more family rituals (Like our annual October Half Moon Bay pumpkin patch trip)
  6. Learn to cook simple, fresher, healthier meals
  7. Create a budget and stick with it!
  8. Thrift more, pay full price less
  9. Organize the girls' toys and donate at least half
  10. Create meal plans every Sunday
  11. Carve out more quality time with Hubby
  12. Do weekly crafts with Natalie
  13. Get back to reading at least one book a month
  14. Recycle-I know it's awful that I don't already. My town does not have a recycling program, and I just haven't gotten around to finding out where I can recycle what.
  15. Make bed every morning
  16. Create a weekly cleaning schedule
  17. Visit my Grandma and Aunt more, who live an hour and a half away
  18. Learn to take better digital photos
  19. Get over my fear of cooking for others and entertain friends more often
  20. Watch an old movie at The State Theater
  21. Pick fabric and sew curtains for the family room
  22. Take the local community ed class on how to reupholster furniture, and bring my Nana's wing chair as the project.
  23. Turn large blank wall in family room into an art wall- all with etsy finds of course
  24. Go to more performances at the Gallo Center For The Arts
  25. Write a weekly letter to my mom, re-capping all the little things that she misses by living so far away
  26. Put little love notes in my Hubby's lunch (even though it will probably embarrass him)
  27. Vote

Book Fair Loot

Remember from this post that the Housingworks Book Fair was going on last week. Well even though it was a rainy soggy weekend, we got out and went to SoHo and checked it out. It was pretty crowded with just tons of open boxes of books. You really had to just shove right in and get to browsing. They had books, VHS, CDs, records...it was really quite the selection.

Here's a close up. Ahem....please excuse the Calvin Klein add in the background.After my arms got too sore carting around all my loot we checked out. My husband even found a hardback Caleb Carr book, one on Shackleton, a growing plants indoors book (we are thinking of doing window tomatoes and a herb garden), and a CD. Everything was a dollar so we walked out with $14 dollars worth of stuff.

Here's my loot:

I found two books for my Egyptian Book Challenge:

When We Were Gods: A Novel of Cleopatra by Colin Falconer

The Empire of Darkness: A Novel of Ancient Egypt by Christian Jacq

A hard copy of Cold Mountain to go with my hard copy of Thirteen Moons which I adored.

Two novels I've been trying to win on other people's blog contests:

Guernica by Dave Boling

One Thousand White Women: The Journals of May Dodd by Jim Fergus

And the others were just random ones that I've been wanting to read. Except Sovereign which just looked good and I grabbed it.

If you missed the book fair, no worries. Housingworks Bookstore and Cafe is so cool and is open year round. I grabbed a cup of coffee and browsed around. I would have stayed longer but my better half was getting restless so I will have to come back some other time. I know they are having a pretty big sale this weekend.

I mean seriously...this is what I want my library to look like in my house someday. Well, without the people posing for me :)

Little Plane, Big Machine Guns

Strangely, it is harder to take down a flimsy little model airplane with this kind of artillery than it is to shoot down a real one.

Banksy in New Orleans

The celebrated street artist hit up New Orleans before the anniversary of Hurricane Katrina.

Banksy Official Site.

Kirtland's Warbler census sets new record

"Close to extinction two decades ago, the Kirtland's warbler has recovered to the point that the tiny songbird is staking out new territory in the Upper Midwest, biologists said Monday."

Link: Full article from ChicagoTribune.com

Kirtland's Warbler © 2008 Mike McDowell

The Atlantis Palm Hotel and Resort in Dubai

Dubai possesses already world’s most luxury hotel, The Burj al Arab.

Very soon another highest class hotel will be added: the amazing Atlantis The Palm Hotel. It is a hotel with 1729 rooms and 17 restaurants, and will be opened to the public on 24th September. The construction lasted 4 years and cost 1,5 billion dollars.

This hotel is dedicated to water: it has a huge water aquarium under the hotel ( more stocks, 11 billions of water ) and a huge water park near the hotel ( the biggest from Dubai and Middle East ). The 113-acre Atlantis hotel in Dubai is hoping to defy the credit crisis as it opens, with rooms costing up to £13,000 a night.