Category Archives: Books

Childhood Reading

My parents tell me that my first toy was a cloth book that I loved to chew on.

1. The first book I remember is Mr. Brown Can Moo, Can You? by Dr Seuss. I can still recite sections of it from memory. I bet my parents eventually hated that book.
2. My parents took me to the library on a very regular basis and I am so grateful. Even at a young age I loved The Giving Tree by Shel Silverstein. I love this book so much that I read it again just before starting this post.
3. I loved the post that Reading Rainbow did about revisiting the books that made you fall in love with reading. After I finished the book I was reading this morning before the readathon started (The Closers by Michael Connelly) I kicked off the readathon with Blackbriar by William Sleator. I didn’t remember much about it except that it was scary and I listened to Hotel California over and over when I read it in middle school. I am about 25% through it now.
4. The Trixie Belden series of books got me addicted to book series and now I mostly read series.
5. Goodnight Moon. This one isn’t from my childhood but from my children’s. This was the book I read over and over to them along with Guess How Much I Love You.

Thanks Mom and Dad for giving me such a love of reading. I can’t think of a better addiction.

Reading Holiday – First 3 Hours

I started the Readathon kinda slowly but I have finished the first 2 books on my list. Don’t be too impressed. That is a total of 31 pages. I also listened to The Escape by David Baldacci while I helped my humbly clean the back yard. So here are my reviews so far.

As I have mentioned I tend to ready books with over 200 pages because I think that much is required for good character and plot development. My first two books have done nothing to dissuade me from that thinking.

The Games We Play by Sean Hayden was actually a cute short story about a woman who gets picked up in a bar but things don’t turn out as the reader expects. I gave it 4 stars because of the twist at the end of the story.

Amish Blizzards Volume 1: A Winter Surplus was a disappointment. It is really just the first few chapters of a bigger book which I may, or may not search out. The story is basically that Abby Yoder is the new school teacher in town. Nathan Miller is a widower who needs a school teacher for his kids but every year the new school teacher goes off and gets married and then they need another new school teacher. He is praying that God would send him someone to teach his kids and someone to replace his wife. Abby might just be the answer to all his prayers.

Next up…Gutenberg the Geek and Be Happier at Home. The first two non-fiction. Stay tuned.

Reading Holiday – Introductory Meme


Woo hoo! The readathon has started 8 am Saturday to 8 am Sunday in my time zone. I woke up at 5 am and couldn’t get back to sleep. It felt like Christmas. So to start the events we were asked to answer the following questions:

1) What fine part of the world are you reading from today? Upstate NY, specifically Stillwater which is a little town near Saratoga
2) Which book in your stack are you most looking forward to? Nikola Tesla: Imagination and the Man That Invented the 20th Century by Sean Patrick
3) Which snack are you most looking forward to? I didn’t plan for snacks so I will probably just throw a frozen pizza in the oven
4) Tell us a little something about yourself! I am a wife and mother of 2 teenagers (have pity on me), professional geek, Pampered Chef consultant who loves to cook, craft and read.
5) If you participated in the last read-a-thon, what’s one thing you’ll do different today? If this is your first read-a-thon, what are you most looking forward to? I am looking forward to mini-challenges  and finding out what other people are reading and reading their reviews.

I am gonna get reading now. More to come!!

Dewey’s 24 Hour Readathon

Most people who know me know that I like to read a little bit. Okay a LOT a bit. So when I heard that this Saturday, October 17th,  is Dewey’s 24 Hour Readathon I thought to myself “I need to get a piece of this.” Who is Dewey? I have no freakin’ clue. From what I can gather she was (she passed away in 2008) a woman with a blog and she issued a challenge to her readers to read for a whole day.


The idea is that “For 24 hours, we read books, post in our blogs and various social media platforms about our reading, and visit other readers’ homes online. We also participate in mini-challenges throughout the day and win prizes.”

Well, that sounds like great fun to me! I am currently 2 books behind in my schedule to read 80 books by the end of the year so this will help me to catch up. One of they things that the website recommends is to ” Pick shortish books. When you’re reading for such a long time, you might get really sick of the same book for hours on end. 2007 Readers recommended that you start with a short book so that you have a feeling of accomplishment when you finish it early in the read-a-thon.”

I would generally have a problem with reading shortish books. I tend to be a bit of a book snob and I don’t read anything with less than 200 pages, however I took this opportunity to check my TBR (to be read) list and sort it by page numbers. This is something you can do on Goodreads. I was amazed by how many books I had “purchased” (most were free when I got them) from Amazon and imported into my Goodreads TBR list that were under 100 pages. I have selected 24 books that I am going to attempt to read in 24 hours.

For those of you wondering, yes, I plan on sleeping and eating and probably getting some yard work done too. For the yard work I plan on having my audio book running. So, is it possible to read 24 books in 24 hours? Well the longest book in my list is 73 pages. The total number of pages in all the books is 796. So by my calculations, I should be able to do it in a little over 13 hours. Which still leaves plenty of time for sleeping.

Added benefit, I will have blown my 80 book challenge out of the water if I succeed. It kinda feels like cheating, reading all these short books but I am pretty excited by the challenge. Stay tuned because when I take breaks I hope to review at least a few of those books here and on Goodreads. So? Who wants to join me?

Below is a list of the books I plan on reading. It occurs  to me that just reading my list will tell you a lot about me. Hmmmmm.

  1. The Games We Play by Sean Hayden (14 pages)
  2. Amish Blizzards: Volume One: A Winter Surplus by Sicily Yoder (17 pages)
  3. Gutenberg the Geek by Jeff Jarvis (20 pages)
  4. Be Happier at Home: Stop Negative Thinking and Be Positive by Mike C Adams (21 pages)
  5. The Power or Changing Your Habits by Charles Duncan (22 pages)
  6. Motivation for the Middle Aged (ouch!) by James Vanderbilt (22 pages)
  7. Get a Life by Stephanie Bond (23 pages)
  8. How to Find Happiness: Change Your Thoughts, Reduce Stress and Anxiety and Live a Life You Love by Joy Marino (15 pages)
  9. No Sh!+ Guide to Decluttering & Organizing Your Home in 3 Incredibly Fast and Simple Steps by Amanda Knowels (26 pages)
  10. Ten Commandments Every Day (Messages From Above Book 1) by J R Kelly Jr (26 pages)
  11. How to Memorize the Entire Bible in No Time Flat by Adam Houge (25 pages)
  12. 101 Ways to Exercise without Noticing by Marianne Duval (30 pages)
  13. Minimalism: Tips to Uncomplicate and Unstress your Life with Simple Living by Isabella Lee (42 pages)
  14. Passionate Vengance by Leighann Dobbs (30 pages)
  15. Second Son by Lee Child (32 pages)
  16. Free to Be Me by Pastor Joes Bauer (35 pages)
  17. Always Know What to Say by Peter W Murphy (41 pages)
  18. Stop Being Lazy: Start Getting Things Done and Stop Being Lazy! by Ryan Cooper (48 pages)
  19. Nikola Tesla: Imagination and the Man That Invented the 20th Century by Sean Patrick (46 pages)
  20. God for Today by Denise Lorenz (50 pages)
  21. Deep Down by Lee Child (44 pages)
  22. How to Beat the Financial Monster at the End of This Book by Tony Elam (43 pages)
  23. Evernote Cracked: The Beginners Guide on How to Master Evernote and Organize Your Life by Clive Alden (48 pages)
  24. High Heat by Lee Child (73 pages)

Books & Vegetables

It occurred to me today that I should have named my website something like OCCB Diva, but that would have been too far from the whole OCD joke. I enjoy cooking, I like crafting but I love reading.

I haven’t gotten around to doing a post on crafting yet but mostly I knit. Right now I am working on a shawl/scarf for my DD, darling daughter, who is going to be 19 in June. I will definitely do a posting on that if it gets done. I have just started the hard part of the pattern, the lace edging. And I have threatened several times to rip the whole thing out. But that is for later.

In 2014 I read a total of 85 books including two that were over 1000 pages (thank you Stephen King). This year my goal is another 85 but according to Goodreads I am 4 books behind schedule at the moment. I blame this on the fact that I spent most of January listening to the radio on the way to and from work. I am back to listening to audio books on my daily commute of about 45 minutes each way.

Right now I am listening to The Help by Kathryn Stockett and reading Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel. Both books are not the type that I would normally read but I am enjoying both immensely. I just told Humbly this morning that I don’t get emotionally involved in books because I don’t tend to read drama.

The Help is about how black women were treated in the South in the 1960s and Station Eleven is a dystopian novel that focuses more on the thoughts and emotions of people who survived than on how they survived. So, light reading. Right.

Moving on to vegetables. It is no secret, dear reader, even if you only met me on Sunday when I started my blog, that I have no love of vegetables. However, once a week, right at my work, I am able to get farm fresh fruits and vegetables through a company called Field Goods. What is really neat about this is that I get to try out new things that I would never consider buying at the grocery store.

Last week one of the items I got was celeriac (no not celiac which is a gluten intolerance). Celeriac is celery root (I don’t think it is the root of what we typically buy as celery at the store but a cousin of it). A really ugly cousin.



I mean it kinda looks like brain, doesn’t it?

Well, you may have noticed that we made homemade french fries on Monday to go with our French Dip sandwiches. When I was researching what to do with celeriac one of the options was to french fry it and I always say that anything tastes good fried so that is what we decided to do. We sliced up some potatoes using my Pampered Chef fry cutter (sorry its been discontinued) and I sliced up the celeriac with a knife (because it is harder than a potato).


Oh did I mention that I am a Pampered Chef consultant?


So anyway, we have never made homemade french fries before so we asked Google how to do it. The Internets said that you should fry your fries twice, so we did.


But we only fried the celeriac once.


Pampered Chef Bar Board and Forged Cutlery 7″ Santoku Knife are still very much available.


I gotta be honest. The fries were pretty meh. I mean, not bad for a first try but definitely not awesome. The celeriac tasted like a celery french fry. It had the texture of a french fry but just the slightest taste of celery. The menfolk thought it was edible. I had one and decided that was enough. Oh well, at least I am trying.