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Everything posted by Raifta

  1. Olivia was one of the girl names that I wanted to use for a baby and didn't but I did get to use it for the dog! The other girl names that I didn't get to use are: Anna Claire and Saoirse and Valancy and Threnody. Boy's name: Tallinn. I have a lot of trouble coming up with boy's names.
  2. Work is slowing down a bit (for the moment) so I have time to read the thread early in the week, but life is getting hectic so I'm not getting much reading done! My main reading goals right now are to keep on reading Outlander - but in French. The first two chapters were slow going but once she got flung back into the past, things picked up. I'm 200 pages in. I do somewhat wish that I hadn't picked such a chunky book for my first read in French for 3 or 4 years but it's holding my interest. This is one of those situations where I can't decide if I wish I was reading it on a kindle/kobo/whatever - there's a fair selection of words that I can guess by context and then a fair selection of words that I can't guess by context but I can still figure out the overall meaning of the sentence, so I haven't bothered looking anything up. Not sure if having the ability to highlight a word and find the translation would help or if that would hinder the flow of reading. I'm also reading A Passage to India as my 'on the bus' book, which I was hesitant to do, but figured was worth a shot. I was afraid it would require too much concentration to work as I only get 15-20 minutes of reading time on the bus and that can sometimes make the experience a bit more disjointed than I'd prefer. It's working better than I expected and when I finish that, I'll have finished Shelf #2.
  3. So I only seem to get on here when I'm at work and this week has been crazy busy so far, but I just managed to sneak a look at the Robin's introductory post and note that I managed to celebrate poetry month! I was at Costco last night and they had a bunch of Shel Silverstein poetry books; we have one and DS loves it so I picked up another one. He was so excited that is was quite sweet and spend last night selecting special poems to read to us. This morning I brought the kids to work with me (long story) and he picked the poetry book along with his current chapter book to bring with him. It's quite neat to see how much he enjoys poetry - reading it, both funny poems and more serious poems, short or long, but also creating poetry. I'm hoping to have time to read through the rest of the thread today or tomorrow!
  4. On a reading related topic, has anyone been having problems when they add a new book to Goodreads? For the last week, every book I add to my list of books I've read has automatically had a second Date Read line added, which is blank. This messes up a few things, not the least of which is when I want to organize books in certain ways. I can go in and delete it, but it's a bit of a convoluted process and I'd rather not have to add a new book, then go back and edit something I hadn't added in the first place.
  5. These are all non-underwire and very lightweight. This is the new version of it. I'm lucky to not need a lot of support, so this works well for me - perhaps that's why they've lasted so well. FWIW, I dry all my clothes - all of it, everything, and so far, no ill effects. On the rare occasion that I've shrunk something I take that as a sign that I was not meant to own that piece of clothing. But for bras and sports bras and other workout clothing, it all seems to just keep lasting. Although I don't have underwire bras, so that might be one difference.
  6. I feel positively luxurious as I have 9 that I consider to be fitting and in rotation - 3 white, 3 black, 3 peach. They are all identical in style. I love them so much. The problem is that I bought them all around the same time (6-8 years ago) and Patagonia no longer makes that version and I hate the new style that uses the same name. So when these wear out, which will likely happen all at the same, but hopefully not for another 3-4 years, I'm going to be desperately searching for a replacement. I also have quite a few sports bras, although I did just toss two of them that are probably 15 years old as the elastic was more crunchy than elasticky. So probably about 6 left, although since I'm at the gym or playing volleyball usually 5-6 times a week and only do laundry once a week, that is kind of necessary.
  7. Yes! Particularly when the other thread at the top when I signed in today was kind of the opposite of baby pictures. They are all adorable.
  8. So I decided to wear my bathing suit to the gym, giving me no option but to do something at the pool. If there was a lane available, I would opt for swimming laps, if not go to the aqua fitness class. There was a lane available so I swam laps for 45 minutes and that was actually very pleasant aside from the constant filling of water of the goggles. And then, because life is like that, I ran into the instructor I was trying to avoid after I finished swimming and was getting dressed in the change room. Such is life.
  9. Thinking of you and your husband - hope that things are looking better today and you are not being harassed by people.
  10. Ugh, the last month was pretty much a disaster fest between getting sick for almost 3 weeks and then not tracking my eating and then my counterwill kicking in and convincing me to just keep eating. But. Today is a new day. I went to the gym and did the Ultimate Tabata class. It was a lot of fun and I'll be going back regularly on Wed mornings for that even if I hate looking in the mirror and avoid it at all costs. Started tracking food again. Decided that I also need to create a 'me' diet as Soror did and plan to work on how I'm going to do that tomorrow. Trying to find the ability to psych myself up for an aqua fitness class in the deep end tomorrow morning. I was all set to go and then they changed the instructor and the instructor is now one of my favourites from 5 years ago when I was at the gym daily and weighed 30 pounds less. Not sure I can actually get in a pool in front of her. That's all on me, I realize, but it's still going to affect whether or not I go. I might just go to the gym but not the class.
  11. I'm almost scared to post on the new forums, but here's my first try. I've read 20 new to me authors so far this year - mix of fiction and non-fiction and I wouldn't hesitate to include the non-fiction ones. I think the books I've read since last posting are as follows: -Sense and Sensibility by Jane Austen - partly read for my rebellious trip through Britain, partly because I love Austen. This is a reread (probably for the third time) for me, and I've also seen at least one movie version but the one thing that really struck me this time is how Elinor strikes me as a classic example of a woman who is bearing The Mental Load. She has to think for everyone and act on behalf of everyone and I felt for her quite a bit - in fact, I found the book somewhat painful to read because almost everyone else, with the possible except of Colonel Brandon, and including her spouse-to-be, seemed to be either utterly incapable or simply mean. -Relish by Lucy Knisley - this is a graphic novel memoir about her experiences growing up with food, farms, chefs, catering, fancy restaurants combined with experiences in little markets etc. Her love of food was palpable and the recipes she illustrated almost all looked delicious. I enjoyed this book quite a bit and passed it along to my kids to read as I felt that there was nothing inappropriate for them in there. -Notes from a Small Island by Bill Bryson - I've read some Bryson before but not this one. I picked it up off my bookshelves since I figured it would cover a lot of Brit Tripping ground and it certainly does. However, I've realized that my rebel bus is so rebellious that I'm not even keeping track of where I've been in Britain. Perhaps that TripFiction link will help some. Or I might just keep on reading books set in Britain and just not care about how many counties I get around to visiting. At any rate, back to the book - like a few other books I've read recently that were written in the 90s, this one was occasionally jarring due to jokes about people (because they are women, or because they are large, or because they are of a certain ethnicity) that I don't think would make the cut today. By and large I enjoyed it but I'm torn as to whether or not I'll keep it. I don't think I'll reread it and I'm not sure it's a book that I would recommend to my kids. Probably best to let it go free in the world. Currently I'm reading Jerusalem by Guy Delisle - a graphic novel memoir of his experiences living with his partner and kids for a year in Jerusalem while his partner worked for MSF. So far, fascinating. Also reading Le chardon et le tartan, which is Outlander in French. It is slow going. I'm trying to finish a chapter in 3 days, which is about the saddest thing I've probably ever typed. However as it is umpteen pages long with umpteen chapters, this might take me all the way to the end of 2018 to finish it at that rate. And reading Moose Magic by Miles Smeeton, about a British couple who end up buying land in Canada and turning it into a wild game reserve. So far great for the bus ride to/from work.
  12. No, it was The Old Country by Mordicai Gerstein. Can't help you with The Taken and any thoughts about that.
  13. One author to read - that is a tough one. I might pick George Orwell. I've always enjoyed how precise he is with his use of language. Jane Austen is also tempting. I feel like you are describing one of the books I finished reading to the kids this week. There's a fox, there's a backdrop of war, the girl turns into the fox so we get a sort of alternating girl/fox POV even though it's the same character, it's melancholy. I'm not sure I loved it though. So, books finished in the last week include The Old Country by Mordicai Gerstein, the afore-mentioned melancholy fox/war/fairy tale book. It was not to my taste and seemed too slight, even though it was longer than a traditional fairy tale might be. Although I'm not a fan of fairy tales in general, so perhaps that's why it left me cold. This was from The Shelf and will be leaving the house. Also finished A Cat Abroad by Peter Gethers - enjoyed this more than his first book about his cat, but there's still a rather cloying preciousness and obnoxious rich person name-dropping aspect (from a person who doesn't think he is rich) to it. The cat is very cute and sweet though. Also from The Shelf, also won't be keeping it. I also made it to the end of Ordinary Magic by Meeka Walsh, another one that will be exiting the house. It was nothing special in the memoir/journal genre. I feel like I'm getting too excited when I finish a book and feel that it's not good enough to keep it in the house. Shouldn't I be excited about finding books that are good enough to keep? Randomly picked up a few graphic novels from the adult section of the library for the kids and one of them was Going Into Town by Roz Chast - it is a sweet little book that began as a little guide to Manhattan for the author's daughter when said daughter moved there for college. Chast had grown up in Brooklyn and then lived in Manhattan and wanted to impart her love for the island to her daughter in the form of this book. I enjoyed it and so did the kids. Started reading Swedish Death Cleaning and it is helping me want to get rid of even more things and making me think I really need to have a conversation with my parents (seriously, do they need to have 40 empty margarine containers? what about the 1000s of books they are keeping for my brother who moved halfway across the country 20 years ago and is never coming back? never mind the 1000s more books that they own - and the puzzles, oh the puzzles, and the fact that they both have supplies for hobbies they don't do anymore). And for Brit Tripping I picked up England's Green and Pleasant Land by J.W. Robertson Scott from one of my bookshelves. So far the first few little essays, written in the 1920s seem to be decrying the state of both the village cottagers and the fox hunting gentry, making England into a not very pleasant land.
  14. I'm just popping back in to say hi and thanks to everyone for continuing to post and inspiring me. I've been on and off to the gym (more off than on) for the last 2-3 weeks but have been sick with some form of virus/cold/flu/bronchitis thing for most of that time. Coupled with a bout of 'eating my feelings' in the middle when I was vaguely healthy, I was avoiding this thread, but I've decided that even if I can't make it to the gym (heck, I can barely make it out of bed these days), I'm still going to check in. The good news is that this last bout of illness has dampened my appetite and after 4 days of not eating, I saw a number on the scale that I haven't seen for ages. I'd like to use that to kick-start some better eating habits once I finally feel like eating again. The other good news is that the physio for my shoulder seems to be working quite well. We're past the stabilizing phase and moving onto the strengthening phase. I can do many things I couldn't before without wanting to cry in pain. I've been trying to keep up with the physio exercises at home even when I haven't been making it to the gym.
  15. There are multiple pairs of scissors lying on the floor carefully hidden under layers of cardboard, paper or other crafting supplies and absolutely zero pairs of scissors in any of the designated scissor receptacles.
  16. I haven't bought any new books this year! Although when I take the dog for her long weekend walk, I pass by a giant Little Free Library (it was a warming hut for the river skating trail and has room for multiple people to stand inside it and peruse the giant 5 shelf bookshelf full of books). I have taken about 5 or 6 books from there and read most of them. There's probably about 8 books on my nightstand. A couple I'm currently reading, most of the others are library books but a couple are books that have been there for so long that the spines are discoloured from sun fading. One my dad loaned me about two years ago. I actually want to read it for a Bingo square this year, so I hopefully will get around to it.
  17. Both the kids and I hate those days too. :grouphug: It is very difficult to get any work done around here when he's at home.
  18. I, too, missed last week and am on week 3 of some cough/cold/flu thing. Not enjoying this but struggling through. I have no idea what I've finished since I last posted thanks to my brain fog, but I am currently reading the following: -Second last book on The Shelf - A Cat Abroad by Peter Gethers - enjoyed it when I first read it in the 90s, not as much this time but it's an easy read for the bus -read aloud to kids: Momo by Michael Ende (bed time) and The Old Country by Mordecai Gerstein (afternoon) - not too thrilled with either one but I'll finish the latter at least as it's a book from the shelf and it's short. Just having trouble finding the ability to read since I'm either suffering from a sinus headache, a terrible cough or some other cold related throat problem. - Morning Son by Pierce Brown - third book in Red Rising series - it's been a while since I read the others so I'm having trouble remembering who all the characters are but I don't want to go back and reread the first two. I'm finding this one less compelling and more violent and not enjoying it as much as the previous two. -Ordinary Magic by Meeka Walsh - this one is proving to be very strange for me as the author is chronicling two separate trips she took, the first with her family, and I happen to know her son who is a key component of the first trip. I actually feel rather creepy as I read it, as I feel that these are things I don't need to know about him and his family. After I finish these two 'shelf' books, I have one left to finish my second shelf and then I'm going to spend the rest of 2018 reading from my shelves but picking books from them based on Bingo and Brit Tripping. And even though I'm Brit Tripping, I will state right now that the chances that I will be able to keep track of where any book is taking place are minimal. My goal is just to read books set in Britain.
  19. I'm using Partnership Writing with my 10 year old and Faltering Ownership with my 12 year old and they are essentially doing it on their own, as this is stuff that is assigned to them in the mornings when I am at work. I try to give them a big picture idea of the project on the weekend before we start a new project. Then I break it down into smaller chunks (either daily for the 10 year old or weekly for the 12 year old) and have them work on that - I'll ask to see work every 2-3 days and give some feedback, figure out if they need any additional resources, point them in the direction of any changes that might need to be incorporated. It takes us 3-4 weeks to do a project and I find that I really need to focus on giving direction during the first week and as long as they have a strong base, they are usually ready to take off on their own. FWIW, I'm also using CAP W & R with the 12 year old and we get that done in the afternoons when I'm home because we complete a lot of it as oral discussion, I read her the story that kicks off the chapter out loud, there are often parts that require her to recite things to me etc. She can do the written portions on her own but I find my contribution is needed on an almost daily basis (we aim to complete a chapter in one week - that's usually 4 days for us as one day a week is inevitably allotted to some outside activity).
  20. I'm a bit befuddled as to where I left off posting - I was sick for most of the last week and finally am starting to feel human again. The good news is that I did finish my very chunky book - All Clear by Connie Willis (the sequel to Blackout). I was not sure how I felt about this one (and the previous one). I liked the premise, I liked the writing, I liked the characters but I desperately wanted there to be more editing. These books were originally planned to be one book and I felt they still could have been one book. 150 pages into the 600+ page book and I felt like absolutely nothing had happened - and I felt like these loops of 50-75 pages with no progress kept on happening. If they could have deepened the characters or atmosphere, I might have been OK with it but I didn't feel either of those things was happening. I also finished The Cat Who Went to Paris by Peter Gethers, which was from The Shelf project. I remembered this as a light fluffy read I had enjoyed (being a cat person) but rereading it some 20 years later, I found it rather offensive (the 1980s were not the most enlightened times) and while the cat is cute and all, I'm not going to hand this one to my cat loving children to read. Been thinking about my top 10: 1. Jane Eyre - Charlotte Bronte 2. Pride and Prejudice - Jane Austen 3. The Blue Castle - LM Montgomery 4. Don't Let's Go to the Dogs Tonight - Alexandra Fuller 5. The Curve of Time - M. Wylie Blanchet So far that's the 5 I can think of off the top of my head while I'm at work. Now to get back to work.
  21. I recently came across a large trifold flyer for Amazon.com back when it was a very new company and only sold books. DH actually took it to work for his 'museum of old computer related things'. Thank you! I had made an Abandoned shelf but had just resigned myself to having that book show up in the 'Read' section as well. DH is actually reading Born a Crime right now after I left it on his desk. I haven't seen him read an actual book in ages. Of course it's due back at the library today. I'm still firmly on the Rebel bus - my goal is just to read books set in England and let the chips fall where they may in terms of what counties are covered. Finished Blackout by Connie Willis over the weekend. I liked it. Didn't love it - possibly because I wanted the historians to spend more time enjoying themselves in the past (OK, maybe not enjoying themselves - but soaking in the experiences) and less time fretting over how they were going to get back. Towards the end when the storylines started to converge I enjoyed it more. Looking forward to All Clear, which concludes the story. Finished reading Wonder by R.J. Palacio to the kids. They were big fans, I was more 'meh'. The book switches from POV between several characters and I felt that some of those sections were unnecessary and I felt that overall the book was pretty trite and predictable. Starting reading two new books to the kids - The Old Country by Mordicai Gerstein, which was next on The Shelf and My Side of the Mountain by Jean Craighead George, which I unearthed when we went through one of the bookshelves of kids books recently. For myself, I am reading All Clear by Willis (see above) and The Cat Who Went to Paris by Peter Gethers (the next book on The Shelf).
  22. Thinking of you and your mom. DH's grandmother also fell and broke her hip in her early 90s (93 I think). She had surgery and spent a fairly short time at a rehab place and then went home to her apartment. She had been living on her own (not in a senior's block, just a regular apartment) and continued to do so for 5 years after her surgery. She went back to driving and taking care of everything on her own until she had another fall at 98. She was in decent health beforehand and that helped. Hoping for a similarly positive outcome for your mom.
  23. Ditto this a million times. I thought DH was nuts to buy the sous vide but I love it. I use it all the time and freezing the steak (or pork chops, which is the other item we use the sous vide for frequently) with a bit of seasoning seems to make it even better than just cooking it from fresh. We had to experiment a few times to get the steak cooked exactly how we like it but now that we've figured out the temperature to set the sous vide cooker our steak is perfect every time.
  24. I finished my two non-fiction books! Huzzah! 1939 - The Lost World of the Fair - Not that impressed - I felt that his reliance on the text of one fairgoer's diary covering one day at the fair made it a rather unbalanced portrayal of 1939 and the Fair. Also, despite the very detailed descriptions of the fair in the diary, I could never get a good sense of what it was like both in the literal sense and in the feelings people had about it - I wanted more maps and photos to accompany the very pedantic explanations of how the exhibits stood in relation to one another. And the occasional typo irritated me (perhaps more than it ought to). Some of the ideas about how society has changed were interesting (more 'ought to' concept of life in 1930s than now) and I wish those could have been explored further. I'm using this for the Microhistory square on the Bingo. Prisoners of Geography - I was fairly underwhelmed by this book; thanks to a fairly strong background in history, keeping up with the news and just completing World History up to the late 90s with the kids last week, not much of this was all that surprising. The chapters on the Middle East and the Arctic were the most helpful in learning something new. For someone who doesn't know much about how current events are driven by geography, this would be a good basic start. Using this one for the Cartography square on Bingo. To those of you who are my GoodReads friends, I'm still not entirely sure how the whole system works but I am enjoying it quite a bit. I'm trying to add 5-7 books a day from previous years' reading lists and I hope that is not too annoying to anyone.
  25. Made it to the gym this morning by virtue of desperately needing to wash my hair. I figured that if I got to the gym, I could figure out something to do that would make me need a shower - and voila - success! I had to get to work early so I couldn't stay long but I managed 30 minutes on the bike.
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