Wednesday, June 29, 2011

Mr. Darcy, Vampyre

Grade: C
Profanity: None that I can remember...
Graphic content (sex, murder,etc.): A little violence... nothing bad

** WARNING: This review is spoiler-ish if you've never read Pride and Prejudice **

So I was getting ready to type up my review of Confessions of an Ugly Stepsister when I realized I never posted this one... oops! So here goes. Hope I can remember everything! ; )

Since Pride and Prejudice is my favorite book, and I'm such a huge fan of the Twilight series, I was really looking forward to reading Mr. Darcy, Vampyre. I mean, if you combined Mr. Darcy and Edward Cullen, you would have the perfect man... besides my husband, of course!! (Love you, Baby (who doesn't read my blog so it's all good)) My cousin Summer (who by the way just started her very own blog, so go check it out here) told me about this book, so I went and picked it up several weeks ago and had it in my huge "To Read" pile for a while. But I finally started it, and...

... I was pretty disappointed from the get-go. : (  I know it's not really fair to try and compare this book to Pride and Prejudice, but if you're going to write something based on another book's characters, you should expect that, I think. And the words just didn't flow as smoothly as Pri... ok I'm going to start abbreviating these titles... as smoothly as PP.

Another big problem I had with MDV was the character of Elizabeth Bennet... I mean Elizabeth Darcy. (In case you didn't know, this book takes place after their wedding). Oh, which reminds me that I didn't put a summary up there. Ok, I'll give you what's printed on the back of my copy of the book, which also happens to be the Prologue:

     My dearest Jane,
            My hand is trembling as I write this letter. My nerves are
        in tatters and I am so altered that I believe you would not
        recognise me. The past two months have been a night-
       marish whirl of strange and disturbing circumstances, and
       the future...
            Jane, I am afraid.
            If anything happens to me, remember that I love you and
       that my spirit will always be with you, though we may never
       see each other again. The world is a cold and frightening place
       where nothing is as it seems.
           It was all so different a few short months ago. When I
       awoke on my wedding morning, I thought myself the happiest
       woman alive...

Ok, so back to Elizabeth... She was just such a wuss in this book!! And worse than that... she came across as foolish and ridiculously naive a lot of the time. : ( The PP Elizabeth was strong and independent. She was intelligent and had a quick wit... They were just such different people that it was off-putting for me.

I will admit that the story itself kept me pretty drawn in the whole time. But the apex didn't seem to come until nearly the end of the book... And the ending was pretty unbelievable. Even for a vampire book.

So I'm not sure if I'd recommend this novel to anyone or not... It wasn't terrible, but there was a lot about it that I didn't like. I have heard that Grange's Mr. Darcy's Diary is much better than MDV, so I still plan on reading it eventually... We'll see how it goes!

So, have any of you read this book? What did you think??

Friday, June 17, 2011

Another Lovely Mail Day

Hi guys! Well, it looks like I'm going to be missing out on the mission trip this year... Pappy isn't doing much better, and someone volunteered to go in my place. (Thank you so much Lauren!!!)

But I figured a little mail love might brighten my day, so here you go! : )


I did send one letter out, but I didn't take any pictures of it... Other than that, it's mainly a bunch of postcards again. But I like postcards, so stop complaining!! ; )

These all went to Postcrossing:

This was a bunch of lists I made for a swap over on the wonderful Gracie's blog:

Now for some Swap-bot items... I signed up for another "What The??" postcard swap, and sent these out:

And this was my 1st attempt at an ATC. I'm excited about starting to collect (and make) them... I've already signed up for 2 more ATC swaps! : )

And now for some awesome incoming mail. I'll start with something I forgot to post last time... I was the lucky winner of a giveaway by Kary over on Gracie's blog a couple months ago, and this is what I won:

These groovy little earrings...
... and an adorable butterfly headband. : )

Thanks again, Ladies!!! Isn't winning stuff the best?! ; ) Ha, ha... Alrighty, now for my incoming Postcrossing:

Look at all those stamps!!!!

I thought the Royal Wedding stamp was hilarious.... : )

Ha, ha... another one!! I do love the moths though. So pretty!

More cool stamps
 And finally some lovely Swap-bot missives... This is from a simple postcard swap:

These next two are from another postcard swap. (She couldn't choose which one to send, so she sent both!)

These two are postcards where you were to recommend a book for the receiver to read:

Recommendation: Grave Sight by Charlaine Harris

Recommendations: The Help by Kathryn Stockett & Hotel on the Corner of Bitter & Sweet by Jamie Ford

And these are some "What The??" postcards that I received:

Ummm... definitely fits the "What The???"

This swap was to send at least 5 homemade envelopes done in a "nesting doll" kind of way... I LOVED the cute owl stickers my partner used!! : ) And the cute little note she put on the outside of the 1st envelope:

And finally, this is the ATC I received from my 1st ATC swap. Love it!!

And that's it for now. Hope you all have a great weekend! I don't think I have any male readers, but if so, have a happy Father's Day!

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Weighed-down Wednesday

Wow, I know I wasn't a very consistent blogger before, but I feel like I'm never on here anymore... And I can't tell you the last time I read anyone else's blog. : (  Working 50 hours a week sucks!!! But I shouldn't complain. I have great jobs... and I just don't utilize the free time that I have like I should. But anyway...

Weighing in didn't even cross my mind this morning. It's been a very eventful week so far. I'll start off with exciting news: We put an offer on a house, and they accepted it!! : ) Yayyy!!! So if everything goes smoothly, we'll close around the end of July. I'm so excited! Here's a little sneak peak:

(They're still putting the finishing touches on the house & yard)

And on to other news... Next week, Matt and I our scheduled to chaperone our church's Youth Mission Trip to Benton Harbor, MI. This'll be our 3rd time (always in a different location), and we really love it! We always have so much fun, and it's a truly great experience.

A couple days ago, however, I found out that my last living grandfather has double pneumonia, and it's not looking very good. They're treating him now, but basically are just trying to get him well enough to be able to go home, just so Hospice can take over. : (

He lives back home in South Carolina, which is already 6 hours away. But now I'm worried that I'll get up to Michigan, and something may happen... So I don't know what to do. I've been praying a lot about it... I let our youth director know what's going on to see if any other female leader would be able to go (since I was the only one for our group), just in case.

I don't know... Worrying about Pappy, on top of wondering if I should go on the mission trip, on top of buying a house... It's really weighing down on me. So I would definitely appreciate your prayers through all of this.

Sorry to be such a downer. I hope you all are having a great week!

Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Weigh-In Wednesday

Yet another depressing Wednesday... ha, ha. One of these days I'm going to get so tired of yoyoing the -10 lb mark that I'll actually meet my goals! But sadly, this is not that week. I ended up working out 3 times, which was not my goal but better than last week... However they were pretty light workouts, and I didn't eat very well. : (  I was hoping for another undeserved, small weight loss, but the facts finally caught up with me:

This week: +1.3
Total: -9.0
Total weeks: 17
Avg. per week: -0.5

Bleh... Back under 10 lbs. Alright, no more negativity. Just going to make my goals for next week: I think I'll say exercise 5 days this time. Maybe if I make that goal for a while, I'll do better at making the 7 day goal. :)

Hope you're having a great week!!

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Random Harvest

Grade: A 
Profanity: None that I can remember...
Graphic content (sex, murder,etc.): None

This book was actually our Book Club selection a few months ago, but I've been horrible with my reading lately and have just finished it. I really loved it though! I was a little worried at first, since it looked like a total romance novel (my cover is different than the one above...). Plus it was originally published in 1941 by an author with whom I wasn't familiar. But I was very pleasantly surprised! : )
This is the "summary" printed on the back of my copy:
"Wake up, Lazy!"
Smithy opened his eyes and looked around. He was surprised to see the girl by the pool. Suddenly she kicked up a spray of water.
"Get up or I'll soak you through, sir," she said sternly.
"Paula," he laughed as he came toward her, "you look like a mischievous pixie."
Bending to help her up, he pecked a kiss at her forehead. Then he gathered her into his arms. "Marry me, darling," he whispered.
"But Smithy, you may already have a wife!"
Smithy's entire previous life was lost to him because of amnesia. What right did he have to ask a woman to share his future? He would never be free until he could discover the forgotten past.
The story takes place in England, and I always enjoy reading in my head with an English accent... ; ) Ha, ha. I don't want to give anything away, because I definitely recommend checking this one out. The characters are well-developed, and the plot flows really well. I never remember being bored while reading it.
And it's such a perfect love story... I was both grinning from ear to ear and tearing up by the end of it. I hate that I took so many breaks while reading it though, so I'll probably end up reading it again soon. But for right now, I'm on to June's Book Club selection: Confessions of an Ugly Stepsister by Gregory Maguire.

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Another Lovely Mail Day

Tons of mail over the past couple of weeks... mostly postcards. And I also joined a site called Swap-bot. So fun!! They have all kinds of swaps, but I've stuck to smaller ones while I get accustomed to the site. : )

I'm also really looking forward to The Happy Mail Project over on Gracie's Blog. Go check it out if you love mail like me!!

Okay, here are my latest outgoing pieces. These all went to Postcrossing Peeps:

On its way to Russia

Making its way to the UK

Virginia bound

Monkeyed its way to Belarus

Late for a date in China

Sent to the Netherlands

This one was requested for a direct swap to Belarus

And these are Swap-bot swaps I did this week. The 1st was just a single postcard of my choice to one person. She liked to read, so I thought she may enjoy this cute postcard I got from The Little Fox's etsy shop:

And this swap was called "What The??" I was to send 5 postcards to 5 people (1 each) where the postcards were weird ones that you would probably never send to anyone... These are the ones I chose:

I'm sure you're all super jealous that I didn't send you the horndog or tapeworm postcard, right!?! ; )

And here are some wonderful items I've received lately:

Super cute postcard from the super cute Gracie :)

This lovely postcard was sent to me for a "Favorite Quote Postcard Swap" hosted by Gracie. My swap buddy was the talented Angela. Thanks again for the awesome postcard... I love it!! :)
And this was the quote she sent ;)

I believe this one came from a direct swap on Postcrossing...
Postcrossing from Russia

Beautiful stamps from Russia

This cutie was a Postcrossing sent from a Taipei Flora Expo

This sweet card was a Postcrossing sent by Martijntje in the Netherlands, who also sent me a beauty definition:

"My definition of beauty is, not the way you look like, but who you are. I personally find beauty in my dog's behaviour and not to forget the eyes of my husband."

She also sent these awesome stamps... Thanks again Martijntje!! :)

This sweet postcard was a Postcrossing from Finland. Love the angels!

"The World's Largest Dump Truck" was one of the "What The??" postcards from Swap-bot :)
"What The??" #2

"What The??" #3... Love the owls!!!

And I guess that's it for this installation... I've already signed up for 5 more swaps on swap-bot, so I should have another post soon. Maybe I should start calling these "Another Large Mail Day" instead! ; )