Saturday, July 24, 2010

Africa Hot

It's hot here, people. Africa hot. As in, Oh. My. Gawd. H.O.T.

As in, I really don't care to blog or clean or mow the lawn or do anything but sit around and whine about how hot it is.

I will, however, bestir myself long enough to brag a little about my weekend. Because whining and bragging are the entire reasons you visit my little bloggy home, right?

To balance out the absolutely miserable temperatures (Yesterday's heat index was 110. I'm telling you - it's miserable.)... Ahem... To balance out the absolutely miserable temperatures, I shall now brag about three things.

1) We got to see Jess, Ken and Bex today! We spent approximately three hours eating overpriced food, strolling through an outdoor shopping center, and watching Bex attempt to entice N into an inappropriate relationship. I'm pretty sure she would have happily gotten in the car and gone with him to Arkansas, but her cruel parents made her get into our vehicle and come home. The path of true love never runs smooth or somesuch.

2) I won a Coach purse and it arrived today!!! I love purses more than anything in the whole world and, while I would never spend the kind of money it takes to purchase a Coach purse, I will gladly carry this one around and attempt to look like the type of person who would spend hundreds of dollars on a purse.

3) And finally, once I fulfill my motherly duties and take N to her softball tryouts this afternoon, I have no other reason to leave the house for the rest of the weekend. I can (and will) bask in the air conditioning with a good book. I tell you, it's a good thing I wasn't born in pioneer days because I wouldn't have survived.

Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Fun at the County Fair

We headed to Nebraska for the annual county fair road trip. We saw cute (and not so cute) animals, braved the carnival rides, and tried to ignore the heat from 1,000 suns that beat down on us as we wandered around the fairgrounds.

I got to squeeze my niece, which did my heart a lot of good. If it weren't for the sling she wears for her broken collarbone, you wouldn't know she'd been in an accident. We had to keep reminding the girls that she was 'broken' so they wouldn't roughhouse too much :)

Thursday, July 8, 2010

I Love My Nook

You may remember that about a month and a half ago, I channelled Benedict Arnold and bought an e-reader. I thought it only fair to report in on my experiences, both good and bad. Whether you care to read the report is completely up to you :)

The Good:

I've downloaded almost all of the classics - Bronte, Austen, Hawthorne, etc - for free. I have an immense library waiting for me to dive in and it cost nothing. This makes me very happy.

Every Friday, the Nook offers a Free Friday book. I'm always intrigued by their choices and have found at least two new authors that I had not heard of previously.

I can 'check out' books from our local library. This was the big selling point for me for Nook vs. Kindle and it's been fabulous. I log into Overdrive, see what's available, and am reading within a few minutes.

It's incredibly easy to read on the Nook. I was worried about page turn speed and it hasn't been an issue. I'm a fast reader so if it's not an issue for me, I doubt if it's much of an issue for anyone.

The Bad:

There's no way to organize the downloaded books into categories on the Nook, so I have hundreds of books that I have to sort through either by date downloaded or title. Supposedly this will be fixed in a future software release but I find it fairly irritating. You'd think a bookstore would understand the importance of sorting by genre.

Most e-book prices are reasonable, but others are a bit ridiculous. Evidently this isn't a Nook issue - supposedly the book publishers have banded together to set prices - but I refuse to pay $10.99 for a digital book that I can purchase for $5.99 at the store.

In conclusion, if it weren't for the ability to check out books from the library, I'm not sure I'd be happy with it. Or any e-reader, for that matter! I would have spent a fortune in the last 45 days if I'd purchased all of the books I've read. As it is, I love my Nook and would encourage anyone with access to a library that subscribes to Overdrive to jump right in - especially since the e-reader price wars have begun and the Nook is now $60 less than its original purchase price.

Monday, July 5, 2010

Let's Not Do That Again

On Saturday, my sister and her family went fishing on the river. They hadn't been on the water for very long - maybe 15 or 20 minutes - when they saw a larger boat coming toward them. The driver of that boat didn't see my sister's family until the last minute. The impact threw my 11 year old niece into the water and left her with two skull fractures, a broken collarbone, several missing teeth, and a severely cut tongue.

It could have been much, much worse.

My spunky niece has gone through two surgeries so far and - miracle of miracles - may be heading home in the next day or two. Her recovery is far from over, but her spicy attitude is back and I have no doubt she'll be tormenting her parents again in no time. My sister said a guardian angel, our sister Carrie, was watching over her, and I believe it. I love that little girl, and I can't wait til I can squeeze her in person.