Monday, 26 January 2015

So pleased :0)

Well reading wise I think I had a pretty fantastic week for me. I managed to read TWO books this week. I cannot believe it and I'm so happy/proud of myself for being able to do this. As I've mentioned before I'm a pretty slow reader so to do this I was really pleased. 

So book number one for the week I started reading last Sunday
I had finished reading this in about two and half/three days. I just flew through it. Michelle's writing style was just brilliant, it had me flying through the pages. I kept on wanting to read about Mara and how things were going to progress for her and whether she was going to be able to cope and get through. She did start to annoy me a little bit towards the end but at the same time I suppose her actions were justified. Noah's character started to develop a lot more towards the end and we started to understand why he had be drawn to Mara in the first place and I would have liked for him to become a bit more rounded. I'm hoping he features in the second book some more and we can learn even further. The ending I didn't see coming at all, even though now when looking back there were hints towards it but still didn't expect it was just brilliant and the second book will be getting put into my tbr jar. I gave this 4 out of 5 stars.

Now onto book two for the week, as I finished reading The Unbecoming of Mara Dyer while I was at work I asked my husband to pull my next read out of my tbr jar so I could see what it was and see whether I needed to download it on kindle or if I have a copy at home etc. So he pulled out for me 
I didn't know much about this book going into it other than what other people had commented about it really, so therefore I knew it was about quite an emotional topic, that it had evoked lots of emotions and thoughts in people. I actually bought this book on kindle on Christmas Day afternoon when Amazon had put up lots of offers so I got this for 99p.
I wasn't 100% sure how I was going to feel about this book going in but I was pleasantly surprised.
The story is told from 19 year old Matthew's point of view and he suffers with mental illness. I found this quite difficult to read in the beginning because it kept on jumping from one part to another but then that was the whole idea with it being from Matthew and a lot of it is written in a stream of consciousness which was a really interesting idea. You cannot help but feel for both the main protagonist and his family around him. It is obviously a struggle for everyone involved. It is a touching story of someone's daily battle with such an unfortunate illness and helps put a lot of things into perspective. It was a good read and worth exploring, 3.5 out of 5 stars. In a way I want to recommend to people who have read The Curious Incident if the Dog in the Nighttime and enjoyed this.

Late yesterday morning I pulled out my next read from my tbr jar (which I was a little disappointed to pull out as I was hoping for another read. Might just have to cheat next time and search it out and read it next heehee) I pulled out this one
I finished wither not long before Christmas and I really enjoyed it so I was quick to ask for Fever and the final installment Sever for Christmas. I had really enjoyed wither and so was pleased to get these. 
I'm only about 30 odd pages in and I'm not quite sure about it at the moment, I thought there would be a bit more before suddenly getting into turmoil but I guess we'll see as it goes on. I'm just aiming to finish this one book this week but I'll see how I get on as I know we are out for a period of time this evening, and I'm possibly out on Thursday as well so could eat into a bit of reading time. But the goal is to have this finished on or by Sunday.

Other bit I have to say about this week too is that I've started to make a baby quilt for a work colleague who goes on maternity leave at the end of February so only a few more weeks to go. I'm hoping to have it finished before she goes on leave so I can give it her. On Sunday my mum and dad came over for a little bit as my mum is going to help me do it, so I chose a block pattern for the centre of the quilt and then I'll put a couple of boards round it before binding it. We didn't get as far along as we thought we would yesterday but we got the fabric cut out for the centre block and I'm hoping to sewing them together this week and then I can cut some fabric for the boarders on the weekend before joining the backs and the front with the wadding in between. I will update with progress but here's a first look at the fabric cut and waiting to be sewn for the centre block 
That's all for this week, hope you've enjoyed reading and I haven't waffled too much.


Monday, 19 January 2015

I love reading


Well I had my birthday on Friday which was really nice as I'd booked the day off work so had some time at home which actually just gave me chance to get the food ready for that evening as we had family coming over to celebrate with me. So was a really great day and evening.

I was really pleased with myself yesterday as I managed to finish Harry Potter and the Philosopher's Stone which I didn't think I would be able to get finished as I had had a rather busy week with a gathering at my husband's gran, a birthday meal/catch up with my best friend on Thursday then birthday on Friday so a lot of my evenings which would usually involve some reading were taken up with other lovely activities. But I did it I don't know how but I finished it yesterday morning and I thoroughly enjoyed it. I mean this was a re-read so as many people are I was very familiar with the story. But it was just brilliant I wasn't bored at any stage, I didn't skim over any parts I just loved it and picked up on a few little details as ever whenever you re-read a book.

Also another major book related issue. For my birthday my husband got me an amazing bookmark which I am completely besotted with. Look at how incredible it is

Isn't it gorgeous, I am so happy with it it's unbelieveable. I think it had the desired effect my husband was hoping for. The fox is made out of pewter, I love it so much. I'm hoping the next book I pull out of my tbr jar is one I have in paperback so I can use it some more.
This picture shows just how much I managed to read on Friday afternoon, Saturday during parts of the day and Sunday morning. As I was given this on Friday morning. Just soo happy with it and think it's probably my favourite present. My sister did also get my a £10 waterstones voucher though and I'm rather pleased with that too haha 

So that means I'm two full books down towards my goal of 20 for the year (although it's classed as my third because I finished MTLGTM just a couple of days into the new year) On to my 4th book for the year and I picked out of my lovely tbr jar this:
  Now I've heard and seen this book floating around on booktube for a while and I've only heard good things about. But at the same time it was mostly when people were give their top series or books of the year so I hadn't actually heard in much detail about the book itself. ( I know a lot of people loving Noah Shaw) So I was going into this book quite blind and didn't know much other than the blurb on the back so here it is taken from Amazon:

Mara Dyer doesn't think life can get any stranger. She wakes from a coma in hospital with no memory of how she got there or of the bizarre accident that caused the deaths of her best friends and her boyfriend, yet left her mysteriously unharmed. The doctors suggest that starting over in a new city, a new school, would be good for her and just to let the memories gradually come back on their own. But Mara's new start is anything but comforting. She sees the faces of her dead friends everywhere, and when she suddenly begins to see other people's deaths right before they happen, Mara wonders whether she's going crazy! And if dealing with all this wasn't enough, Noah Shaw, the most beautiful boy she has ever seen can't seem to leave her alone… but as her life unravels around her, Mara can't help but wonder if Noah has another agenda altogether…

Obviously I haven't finished this book yet but I am loving it! I don't know how but I'm already 152 pages in which considering I didn't even download it until yesterday afternoon and that I'm a slow reader speaks volumes for the book. It's probably the length of the chapters which makes it easier too as they are quite short. I'm really enjoying the book so far though, Mara is coming across as a very likable, relatable character although how much of a reliable character she is I'm unsure yet because of how far in I'm in. Whether this will change I don't know yet. I also have mixed feelings about Noah Shaw who I'm guessing is the main love interest in the story but again because of how far in I am I don't know about him just yet. I am engrossed by Michelle Hodkin's writing style it flows nicely and keeps me wanting to turn the next back, although I'm reading this on my kindle so guess clicking :O) 
I was hoping to hold out and get these in paperback but they were out of stock on Amazon, and Waterstones (both online and in store) so I went with the download. 
I'm going to try and aim again to have this finished on Sunday but I'm not sure how I will do as obviously this is a larger book than Harry Potter, and I'm also doing some sewing with my mum on Sunday so that means I won't have as much time to read on the weekend as finishing up but who knows how I'll progress with it during the week.

I'm just completely loving reading at the moment and books I can't get enough of them. I'm just having to restrain myself from buying more. Need to get through a few more that I have already first and I think I will make a list and purchase a few towards the end of the month. Think I will have to give myself a limit, of how much I spend and how many I buy a month. In relation to how many I've read.

Well hope this is a enough of a bit of an update for now. Type soon xx

Monday, 12 January 2015

Heading into Week 2


Well with being back at work last week I don't have as much to say as last time but I'm still pretty pleased. I managed to finish Shadow and Bone 
I finished this on Saturday and it was brilliant. I really enjoyed Alina as a main character I was hoping and routing for her and Mal throughout most of the book. I don't want to give too much away as I hope you'll want to read this yourself (which I completely recommend if you're a fan of fantasy). But I'm going to cheat slightly and here is the blub off waterstones
 'Lonely orphan Alina discovers a power that could be the key to saving her
 kingdom. But can she trust the seductive, powerful Darkling? And what about Mal, the childhood best friend she can't quite forget? Irresistible. Epic. This is glorious sweeping fantasy and the romance to end all romances' 
This was a really great read, it kept me gripped and wanting to read on and see what would happen but also how it would end as I was fully aware going into this that it was a trilogy. So I was always wondering getting towards the end how they would close this off. I suppose you could read this as a standalone but you would be left with a lot of unanswered questions but also I don't know any one who would just want to read this one, it's such a great read you do just want to go onto the next one. I have popped the second one (Siege and Storm) into my tbr jar right away and plan on purchasing once my birthday has passed on Friday. (Just to make sure don't do any doubling up and see if I get any book vouchers.)

So the next book which was pulled out (by hubby) of my tbr jar is a reread and it's this beauty 
I got this new set for Christmas from my mum and dad and it's just soo darn pretty and it just feels amazing in your hands its like a rubbery texture which is probably the wrong way to describe it but that's how it feels to me. So as I said this is a reread, and I'm not setting myself the task of reading them all this year which I know some booktubers and book bloggers. How I'm approaching it is, when I've read the one the next one will be put into the tbr jar and then when I pull that one out and so forth so there's no guarantee when I will read the next one. I just figured this was a nice way of going about it and also I won't feel guilty about getting distracted by other books in between. So I'm currently upto chapter 3 and hoping to have it finished by/on the weekend but just have to see how I go as there should hopefully be a few things going on this week. 

Making good progress so far with my challenge of the year of 20 books though 2 complete and onto the third and it's only 12th Jan :) 

I did also manage to do some Project Life over the weekend as well, I pretty much managed to complete two more pages although there is one slot left for a photo and I need to change of the cards in it.
I just need to change the bottom left card in this one to a month card and then this page will be complete. The top left is a recap card, I'm not sure how I feel about it at the moment so might change this one slightly but will be the same concept and information. 
Here's the second page this is the one which is missing a photo or card but not 100% sure what to pop in their yet I might change the recap card and split onto two but it will get filled. Still pleased with the progress I've been making and hope to keep it up.

This is mainly all I have to share this week sorry was a bit quieter with heading back to work after the Christmas hols but will hope to have more next week with activities going on and hoping to get projects started and continued.


Monday, 5 January 2015

2015 ! !

Hello 2015! 

I know I know I dropped off a bit at the end of last year but there was a fair bit going on and I didn't feel I wanted to blog about it and then as always life just got a bit on top of me. But it's a New Year and so back to trying to write each Monday morning.

I hope everyone had a brilliant Christmas and New Year. Our Christmas was lovely and was just so nice to have a decent length of time off work and be at home. Although as with when you have any time off several days were filled up with things. But before going back to work today I had a great day at home seeing my best friend in the morning, family at lunch (very tasty food) and then a quite evening me and the husband bliss before back to the grind stone today haha. 

I'm going to be following much of the same format as last year with posting about books I've been reading, things I've been making and doing, exciting dishes I've been cooking and just generally what I've been getting upto.

So let's start off with books. I'm going to attempt the Good Reads reading challenge this year I didn't quiet make my target last year but then I didn't start until May so missed out on a few month. I'm going to be realistic with my goal though so I can hopefully achieve it. I've set myself the target of 20 books for the year which might sound a low target but I figured that still more than one book a month and allows for if I've chosen a large book to tackle so here's to hoping.

I've finished one book so far this year:
I started this one as a 12 days of Christmas read but it was soooo good I couldn't just stick to one a day. I couldn't more highly recommend this as a Christmas read and even one for picking up in the winter and doing rereads. I was really surprised by the amount of stories I loved in this book and there was only 1 which I didn't like at all and just ended up skimming over. But I cannot stress how good some of the stories are in it and how much I wanted them to be full length books. I have this 5 out of 5 and well it's just so darn pretty too!!

So onto the next book for this year which I started shortly after finishing the above. I've started reading: 

I'm only 100 pages into it so far but I'm enjoying it. It's a fantasy book and it's based around a girl called Alina, as I said I'm only 100 pages in so far and so it's all only just starting to happen in the plot. But so far I'm really enjoying the writing style and the characters. I've just started thinking about where I think it might go when I'm reading it and what I might expect so will be interesting when I carry on as to whether my thoughts and ideas will pan out, I'm hoping I'm wrong about a couple of feelings and get some nice surprises. So far so good though and just have to wait to see how it goes. I probably won't mention this one again until I've finished it though. 

Craft things.
So to begin with I wanted to make a tbr (to be read) and tbw (to be watched) jars. I've seen tbr jars in various forms on booktube for a little while and well I wanted to do my own and guess it would help me decide which book to read next if I haven't got one in mind and I can keep on adding to it.
Now the tbw jar was because my husband and I are very indecisive sometimes and this way it took responsibility from each of us with which film to pick. We're going to try out this year making sure we put at least 1 night a side for us to do something together, whether watch a film, go for a meal etc. So we wrote 18 films down and added them to the jar. I'm really pleased with the way the jars look and turned out.

So after not much persuasion and hardly any encouragement I'm going to give Project Life a go this year and the aim is to stick at it. My best friend came over on Sunday to give me a hand as she had already started hers and she also showed me how to use some apps and also we found out that we can use our printer direct from our iphone and ipads which will make things so much easier and I'm just so happy that we will be able to print direct from them rather than having to send to emails and then print from laptop etc just soo excited and will hopefully help keep motivation because of the ease of being able to do it. Also my best friend and I have made an agreement that we will help keep each other motivated with doing it and on track so fingers crossed to see how it goes. Here is my front page of this years album :-) I'm really happy with the way it has turned out. 

There are probably some things I'm forgetting but I guess they can always be covered in another post.
I hope you are all having a brilliant start to the New Year.