Friday, December 28, 2012

Wicked Deeds on a Winter's Night - Kresley Cole

It's Christmas.
So of course I chose to read a book
with the word winter
in it's title!

Wicked Deeds on a Winter's Night
is the third book in the 
Immortals After Dark series.

After already meeting Bowen McReive
in past books,
we get to know him a little more here. 
Bowen is a heartbroken Lykae
who lost his mate over two centuries ago
and even after all this time, 
he stills feel guilty for
being what he beleives to be
the cause of her death.

Then there's the fiery, snarky
little witch names 

Wicked Deed picks up
somewhere in the Hie
(last book).
Bowen wants desperately to win
so he can bring back his former mate.
In the process,
 he traps Mariketa and some others in a tomb.
But, we all know from the last book
that he looses
and gets stranded.
And so Wicked Deeds
continues from here. 

Bowen realises
that with each passing moment,
all he thinks about is the little witch
and comes to the conclusion
that she must have enchanted him.
Or she's the reincarnate of his beloved. 

But Bowen has trapped her
with the incubi and he must not only rescue her
but also convince her not to kill him.
That's always a great way to start an
immortal relationship! 

Bowen and Mari are fabulous.
They have a wonderfuk
love/hate relationship.

Thursday, December 27, 2012

Writer's Workshop - Green and Red

Share a holiday inspired recipe.

I'm slightly cheating.
I'm not sure if this counts as a
holiday inspired recipe.
But we had a Christmas luncheon
and we were asked to bring a green salad.
I thought that was fairly ordinary
and wanted to be a little creative.
So I made a baby spinach and strawberry salad.
Figured the green and red
made it festive.
I stole the recipe from
Ms Paula Dean.
You can find it here.
I didn't have enough strawberries,
so I threw in some blueberries.
And also added some feta.
Oh, and didn't have any cucumbers.
it's the same recipe.

Scott couldn't understand
why I wouldn't do a simple
green salad.
But once he ate this,
he even had to admit
that I made a right choice!

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

52 Weeks of Happiness - Week 42

Ethan hasn't spent time with my parents
since last Christmas.
My mum and dad came to visit us
in Lusaka for a couple of days.
He did see my mum in July,
when she came to babysit him for a few days.

I don't think I realised
how much he missed them
(or they him)
until we got together
 this past weekend.

My parents are in Toronto
and were suppose to head back to Dar
on the 18th.
But then they learnt
we would be there on the 18th,
so they changed the date of their flight.

We went to visit my parents
at their new place.
Ethan loved it.
(So did I.)
When they were in Dar,
my dad worked a lot,
so even when Ethan would visit
he didn't see much of my dad.

But here,
dad was home.
And Ethan loved it!

They played chess together.

My dad showed Ethan my baby pictures.
Ethan had my mom running wild.
They played hide-and-seek
all over the house. 

On Saturday,
we were getting together with some of my cousins
and their kids.
The original plan
was to meet and head on out.
But we spent the day at my folks.

The kids danced
and played
and ran around the house.

Gangnam Style

Opening presents
My parents loved it.
I'm not sure when they were in a houseful
of children.
They were grandparents
to everyone.

The sad part,
was saying bye.
But we hope
they will come visit us in Lusaka soon.

Happiness is spending time
with the grandparents.

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Writer's Workshop - Santa

1.) Have you made a visit to the North Pole yet? Share your Santa pictures!

We went to see Santa today.

A couple of years ago,
Ethan kept telling us 
he wanted Rex from Toy Story
for Christmas.
Then we went to see Santa.
He asked Ethan what he wanted
and Ethan replied,
"Jessie from Toy Story."


We had arranged a Rex from Dar
and now, 
on the 23rd of December
he decides he wants something else???

So, we were prepared this year.
Ethan's been tossing between 
two things to ask 
We've got them both.
We were just hoping he said one of them
and didn't throw us a curve
and say something else.
He didn't.

We love this Santa.
He's fabulous.
He could pass as the real one.
But not according to Ethan.
He keeps seeing Santas,
so does not beleive this is the real one.
But at least he still beleives.

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

52 Weeks of Happiness - Week 41

I've been in a bit of a slump this year.
I did not manage to get our
Christmas decorations up.
I've done a horrible job
with our Elf.
Christmas just seems to have
crept upon me.

But we're home now.

I came home today to find this,
Christmas gifts I've bought online.
I also found this
in that mess
A Christmas gift from Ethan's Seed.
My online baby group.
And I even got
a Christmas gift
to myself
from myself
courtesy of Ros.

it is starting to feel
like Christmas.

Happiness is finally feeling that
Christmas is here.

Thursday, December 13, 2012

Writer's Workshop - Dear Santa

3. Write a letter to Santa and let him know what you'd like to see 
under your tree this year.

Dear Santa,

This has been a busy year.
I cannot believe it's that time
of year again.
Time for you to realise
how hard I've worked,
and surprise me with all kinds of goodies.

Scott's been in Kitwe since August. 
We see each other,
every other weekend,
sometimes even longer.

I've been working hard
and have a fabulous class.
I'm now a single mom
(who does not date).
I've even begun my Master's.
I think I've been doing a great job
work, motherhood and studying.

To make your busy life
here are some items
I hope to find 
under the tree this year:

1) Peyton Tattersall File Bag

2) Wolf Gift

3) True Blood

Thank you Santa.

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Spending the Holidays With PIWTPITT

I have been following Jen's
blog for about a year now.
I'll admit,
I became a fan of hers
with her famous
Elf post last year.
Scott's appalled 
by the name of her blog;
But she's honest
and funny.

So she came out with this book
a couple of months ago.
In true Jen fashion
it's hilarious.
She chronicles some memorable
Christmas' of her past.
Jen says what most of us are thinking.
Or at least what I'm thinking.

if you're travelling anywhere this Christmas
and are in need of an airport read,
here's one for you.
But be warned,
you may get strange looks from people
when you find yourself

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

52 Weeks of Happiness - Week 40

Some mates of ours,
posted on Facebook
that they were taking their kids 
to see some lion cubs this past weekend.
I had seen some pictures
of other mates who had gone,
and thought Ethan would love to go.

So Sunday morning,
off we went in search of baby cubs.

This family had lions.
While it seems quite sad,
their idea is conservation.

The cubs are males,
and had to separated from the adult
Like kittens,
they were very playful.

We did get to see the lions as well.
White lions.
he looks a little sad here,
but when we arrived,
we saw the owner come out
and refer to him as 
"my baby" and he jumped on her.
The idea is to conserve lions
and keep them from being poached.
Is it right?
I don't know.

Ethics aside,
Ethan had a wonderful experience,
even if he did get nipped
by a cub.

Happiness is getting up close and personal
with a couple of baby cubs.

Thursday, December 6, 2012

Writer's Workshop - Shopping

What was the last thing you bought?

The Grade 4 students
had their Holiday sale today.
They've just completed their
Unit of Inquiry
on supply and demand.
The students did some research
and were then asked 
to bake or make something
they could sell 
at the market.

I planned to support the 
Grade 4 students
by buying a cupcake,
or brownie
or something sweet.

I never imagined to come across these.

But not just earrings,
shoe earrings
handbag earrings.
Don't they just have my name on them?

And then, 
of course,
I couldn't decide which pair to wear
so I wore one of each!

WBC - Keeping Warm

So the weather outside is frightful. What are doing to enjoy being inside?

The weather here has been wonky.
It's the whole
"How do I dress?"
There are nights it rains,
so it's cool in the morning
and you need a jersey.
But then the sun comes out
and you find yourself
doing the perpetual strip tease.
it's really hot out
and you wear a cute dress
only to see the clouds come out
and it start to rain.
Then it rains all night
so it's cold
and you need to get right under
the covers.

I cannot wait for Christmas.
I cannot wait to go home.
I'm even excited about the cold and snow.

And when I get home
that first evening
and start to feel the cold,
so cold
my bones even feel cold.
Well then,
I know I need a good
old fashion cup
of hot chocolate.
With marshmallows!

Crushed - Dawn Rae Miller

You know you have a good book 
in your hands,
when you put off doing school work
and stay up all night to finish reading it.

I was first introduced to
books by Dawn Rae Miller
when I picked up Larkstorm
for free on Kindle.
I loved how she wrote her characters.
Even after reading the second book,
and her prequel
I find myself referring to them
as real people and not just characters in a book.

So when she got onto Facebook
and asked if anyone wanted an advanced copy of her newest book,
you know I couldn't refuse.
She sent me the book 
with a warning. 
This was no Larkstorm.
This is meant for a slightly more
mature audience.
One who won't cringe at the course language
or sexual exploits of her characters.

Crushed did not let me down.
And neither did Miller.
Once again,
she has created characters you love
and love to hate.
This time,
she's written the book 
from the POV of Fletch Colson.
A seventeen year old
man-whore who
goes to boarding school.
Fletch and his buddies 
collect panties.
And he loves it!

Fletch is back to school
for his senior year
and something's not right.
He hooked up with one of his female mates,
over the summer
and she broke his heart.
Yup, he has a heart.
And the best way to get over one girl
is to get on top of another.
Fletch's mates tease him
that he can never be friends with a girl
and challenge him to be-freind 
beautiful, smart, and sexy
Ellie Jacobs.

At first,
when reading that this was a dare,
I began to have visions of
that Sarah Michelle Gellar movie with
Reese Witherspoon.
it's not that.
It's more.

Through this friendship,
Fletch learns about himself.
He learns about his family.
He learns who he is
and what he wants
and mostly,
what he does not want.

Miller does a fabulous job,
not just with her characters,
but with voice.
(Can you tell I'm teaching my kids
about voice?)
I forgot this was the same author
that wrote Larkstorm.
There was no comparison.
This is Crushed.
A story on its own.
A coming of age story.
coming of age 
for a male-whore
and no pun intended!

Rapture - JR Ward

I bet you thought I'd stopped reading.
I know it's been awhile
since I've shared a book I've read.
It's not that I'm not reading.
I've started my Masters
(yay me!)
and have been busy with required
that reading for pleasure
has fallen through the cracks.
But guess what?
Not only do I have another book
to tell you all about,
this is also the 50th book 
I've read this year.
I reached my goal of 50 books!!!

Rapture is book #4 in JR Ward's
Fallen Angel series.
Jim and Adrian are once again
up against Devina in round four
of the fight for good and evil. 
This time, 
the battle is a do-over
for Jim's former XOps boss,
and nemesis,
who was condemned to Hell
when Jim lost battle #2.

Mels Carmichael,
is our young love.
She's a reported for the Caldwell Newpaper
and is sucked into the battle 
when she accidentally hits Matthias with her car
outside the cemetery.
having spent time in Hell,
is given a second chance,
and awakens in the cemetery
with no idea what's happened to him. 

Of course,
it is now up to Jim
to "save" Matthias.
From himself,
from the memories that are flooding back,
and from Devina
who has learnt that Jim has a weakness. 

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

52 Weeks of Happiness - Week 39

Right before Halloween,
Tyler over at Afrikolor
had a pumpkin carving event.
Ethan loved carving his pumpkin.
He is very proud of the finished product
and has reminded me that we need to pull it out
every Halloween.

This past weekend,
Tyler was up to his magic once again.
This time it was ornament making.
The kids got to make 4 ornaments
and 2 angels.
Ethan chose his designs
and even the colours he wants them to be.

We should get them before we leave for Canada.
Ethan thinks they might make nice Christmas presents.
I think I want to keep them.

Tyler showing them how to use the stencil.
Pounding the clay.

Ethan's ornaments.
Making his angel. 
I can't wait until they are ready.

Happiness is making 
Christmas ornaments.

WBC - Favourite Book

December 4th - Talk about your favourite book. Why is it your favourite?

This is a hard one.
Do I have to choose just one?
I think I'm going to cheat
and have two books.
A children's book
and an adult one.

 many of you
are probably ready to stop reading
because you don't want to hear
about my vampire books.
So I'm going to let you know 
right now, 
this is not a vampire one.
Mainly because I'm not sure
I could narrow it down to just one.
(John Mathew)

Growing up,
I loved Anne of Green Gables.
I think Gilbert Blythe
was probably my first crush.
My bucket list
has going to PEI.
I love Anne's rebelliousness.
She has spunk.
She has attitude.
No one will step in her way.
Everyone should read this one.

Now, if you haven't read this next one,
you've probably seen the movie.
And if you haven't done either,
you're about to roll your eyes at me.
The Notebook
by Nicholas Sparks.

My mate introduced me
to Nicholas Sparks books
many years ago,
when The Notebook
first came out. 
I fell in love with the book.
It's one I read almost every year.
It doesn't hold the same magic
that it once did,
but I still love it.
And well,
Ryan Gossling
as Noah,
what's not to love about that?

Saturday, December 1, 2012

Winter Blog Challenge

Over the summer,
I came across a
Summer Blog Challenge.
I started off great
but didn't do too well.

Then there was the
Autumn Blog Challenge.
Once again,
I had good intentions,
but there were a lot of prompts
I couldn't answer
so I lost memento.

So that takes us to the
Winter Blog Challenge.
Let's hope I do better this time around.

December 1st - What is your favourite way to welcome in
the winter/holiday season?

Technically it's
summer/rainy season here.
And asides from welcoming 
the rain with a new pair of wellies,
I don't do much.
But the holiday season,
well I'm all about that.

This year will be our 3rd year
the Elf on the Shelf 
makes his appearance. 
I'm not one of those 
overachieving moms
who's elf plays tricks
for the entire month.
our Jake shows up,
watches Ethan,
if he's had a good day,
he leaves Ethan a treat.

I have a lot of mates
whose children
are hitting the age where they
question whether Santa is real
or not.
Ethan's not there yet.
And honestly,
I love it.
I love the look on his face
when he sees Jake. 
I love how he chats with Jake.
Ethan even wonders
when Jake hasn't moved for a while
what's going on.
(A definite cue to Scott and I
to move Jake somewhere else.)

The holiday season
goes off with a great start
when Jake shows up.

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

52 Weeks of Happiness - Week 38

It has been incredibly hot lately.
But then,
on Saturday,
the rainy season officially began.

Yes, I'm loving the rain.
It has cooled this place down.
A lot.
I sleep well at night.
I'm not uncomfortably hot.
I can enjoy my latte
without questioning why I have a hot drink.
I get to wear my new Wellies!!!!

Happiness is a cute pair of 

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Writer's Worksho - Thankful

We're going around the table and it's your turn to share
what you are thankful for....

A few of my mates on Facebook
have been participating in a month
of thankfulness.
I loved the idea
and seeing what they were thankful
for everyday.
I thought of participating,
but being Canadian,
our Thanksgiving was in October
so I didn't feel right about it.
But now,
well now I can share.

The last few months have been rough.
With Scott being in Kitwe,
I'm awfully lonely
and hate it.
And while I constantly 
moan and complain,
I'm thankful for a husband
who has put himself in an uncomfortable position
and never complains. He's doing what he
feels is best for his family, and 
no matter how much I whine and complain,
I know I have the better end of the bargain. 

I spent most of today
working on a paper for one
of my courses. 
It took longer than I thought
it would.
I promised Ethan this afternoon,
that we could watch a movie 
together tonight.
I am thankful for having completed my paper.
I am thankful for a son
who enjoys cuddling with me
on the sofa
while watching a Disney movie. 

When I was in Dar,
I had two great mates
that indulged me with Twilight.
We would go see the movie
and criticise and laugh.
Last year
I managed to find someone to go 
She laughed along with me.
Then she moved to Kosovo!
But tomorrow,
tomorrow I have plans with some great
mates to see Twilight.
I am thankful
to have mates
willing to see Twilight with me
even though they know
I will laugh the whole way through. 

While studying today
I sooo needed a break
and treated myself to a 
I am thankful for
cute toes and fingernails. 

I hope everyone's having
a wonderful Thanksgiving.

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

52 Weeks of Happiness - Week 37

It's Thanksgiving this week.
Being Canadian,
our Thanksgiving is in October.
But it tends to pass us by.
We're working
and we don't have family around.

But the American Thanksgiving,
that's a little different.
Working for an American International School,
we get the 4 days off.
Many teachers
are taking advantage of the long weekend
and going away.
With not having family nearby,
it's not the same.

being an Expat
means you gain new family.
This past weekend,
some mates of ours
hosted a Thanksgiving
for their Lusaka family.

The dinner table

Jeff carving the turkey
Thanksgiving marks the beginning
of the Christmas season.
And what better way
to bring in the season
then with my friend

It's nice to spend time
with our Lusaka family.

Susan even gave some of us
a little history lesson.

Happiness is spending time
with your Lusaka family.