Tuesday, December 8, 2009

More Books Read

Looks like I've got a pretty good update here. After that first book from the House of Night series (Marked by P.C. Cast & Kristin Cast), I went right along reading as many of the rest as I could get my hands on. I put myself on the waiting list in the library for the most recent book in the series that came out not too long ago, and guess what number I was on the list....123. Yeah, pretty intense. Last time I checked this afternoon, I was number 116, so moving up the list, but not too quickly. I think I'll just go read it at the book store. These books took me one or two days to read, so hopefully even reading it that way won 't take too long.

Until I can get myself to the bookstore though, I need to figure out what to read next. But here is the list so far:

1. Grave Sight by Charlaine Harris
2. Grave Surprise by Charlaine Harris
3. Moon Called by Patricia Briggs
4. Newjack: Guarding Sing Sing by Ted Connover (for my Criminal Justice class)
5. Courtroom 302 by Steve Bogira (for my Criminal Justice class)
6. Bitten by Kelley Armstrong
7. Stolen by Kelley Armstrong
8. Dime Store Magic by Kelley Armstrong
9. Industrial Magic by Kelley Armstrong
10. Haunted by Kelley Armstrong
11. Broken by Kelley Armstrong
12. Vanquished by Hope Tarr
13. No Humans Involved by Kelley Armstrong
14. Personal Demon by Kelley Armstrong
15. Marked by P.C. Cast & Kristin Cast
16. Betrayed by P.C. Cast & Kristin Cast (NEW)
17. Chosen by P.C. Cast & Kristin Cast (NEW)
18. Untamed by P.C. Cast & Kristin Cast (NEW)
19. Hunted by P.C. Cast & Kristin Cast (NEW)

In Progress:
(in no particular order)
1. Enslaved by Hope Tarr (need to restart, it's been a while)
2. Living with the Dead by Kelley Armstrong
3. Night Rising by Chris Marie Green
4. Minion: A Vampire Huntress Legend by L.A. Banks
5. The Inspector & Mrs. Jeffries by Emily Brightwell

Waiting in the Wings:
(books that are checked out of the library and waiting to be read)
1. Mrs. Jeffries Plays Cook by Emily Brightwell
2. The Hunted by L.A. Banks

That brings my list of read books up to: 19/50!!!

I did forget to post the link to the 50 Book Challenge.

The good news is: I'm getting closer to my new goal of getting 25 books read. And the even better news is: that the new year is getting closer, so I'll have a chance to do the 50 Book Challenge starting from January instead of halfway through the year.

UPDATE: I went to library this evening. I returned all those House of Night Books and a Kelley Armstrong. Since I'm still #116 on the waiting list for the new HoN book, I looked around for what else I could get. I ended up picking up The Luxe and Rumors by Anna Godberson (a book on hold). They look pretty long, so I don't know how fast I'll be able to get through them. I'll start on The Luxe tonight, and hopefully get through a good 100 pages before bed.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Long Over-Due 50 Book Challenge Update

Okay, so long story short. I spend most of July in the hospital, August in bed at home, and wasn't really able to read until late September. Then my excuse for not updating was "not getting to it"...for the most part. Plus bouts of feeling like crap, another hospital stay in mid-October. That was followed by being home on gawdawful antibiotics. And November was just plain busy.

So here I am updating my book list, with not too many books to add to it. As, due to several medical reasons, I have been unable to concentrate enough to get through much reading. I haven't updated my crochet part of the blog because although I hoped to get lots of crocheting done while sick, my arms/hands were not cooperating. Anywho....back to updating my book list.

For those who are curious what I'm talking about, check out the 50 Book Challenge post.

1. Grave Sight by Charlaine Harris
2. Grave Surprise by Charlaine Harris
3. Moon Called by Patricia Briggs
4. Newjack: Guarding Sing Sing by Ted Conover (for my Criminal Justice Class)
5. Courtroom 302 by Steve Bogira (for my Criminal Justice Class)
6. Bitten by Kelley Armstrong
7. Stolen by Kelley Armstrong
8. Dime Store Magic by Kelley Armstrong
9. Industrial Magic by Kelley Armstrong
10. Haunted by Kelley Armstrong
11. Broken by Kelley Armstrong
12. Vanquished by Hope Tarr
13. No Humans Involved by Kelley Armstrong
14. Personal Demon by Kelley Armstrong (NEW)
15. Marked by P.C. Cast & Kristin Cast (NEW)

In Progress:
(in no particular order here)
1. Enslaved by Hope Tarr (need to re-start it though)
2. Living With the Dead by Kelley Armstrong
3. Betrayed by P.C. Cast & Kristin Cast
4. Night Rising by Chris Marie Green
5. Minion: a vampire huntress legend by L.A. Banks
6. The Inspector & Mrs. Jeffries by Emily Brightwell

Waiting in the Wings:
(books already checked out of library for the most part)
1. Chosen by P.C. Cast & Kristin Cast
2. Mrs. Jeffries Plays Cook by Emily Brightwell
3. The Hunted by L.A. Banks

The updated count is.... : 15/50!!!

Not too bad, considering how I spent my summer and fall. The sucky part is that it's now December, so that gives me a little less than a month to finish out as many books as I can. Though considering that I started this in June-ish, not too bad. I'm hoping to get at least halfway through the 50, so that gives me about 10 more books to read.

The first P.C. Cast book read through really quick, so I'm hoping the second one will go as fast. Don't know exactly how many books there are in the series so far, but I think I can get through a few more before the month is through.

So, with so little time left, I won't do goals for myself like I did in the last post. I'll just read and focus on reading books that I enjoy! I'll post again next week probably or when I get a few more books read.

Sunday, July 5, 2009

Update to 50 Challenge

QUICK NOTE: I started this post AGES ago! And somehow never finished it or posted it. I have been wiped out for most of this previous week, and the holiday weekend was just one big "I want to do nothing but rest and sleep" weekend. So onward to the post!!!

I finished the book I was on (on 1 or 2 July 2009), so I figured I might as well update my 50 Book Challenge progress!

Broken by Kelley Armstrong was AWESOME!!! Could not wait to get to this book, and it was well worth the wait (especially the very ending! Squeeee!).

On the 1st of July, I did a bad thing, and went to library. Well, not as bad as going to the bookstore... So, I start looking through their new arrivals section, and stumble across two book series. One caught my eye because on the cover, it has a review blurb by none-other than Kelley Armstrong!!! I'm thinking, if she reviewed the book and said it was good...it must be good!

The book is titled: A Drop of Red (written by Chris Marie Green), and it's the fourth of six (at least that's the plan) in a series called Vampire Babylon. The books, in order are: Night Rising, Midnight Reign, Break of Dawn, and A Drop of Red. I'd like to get at least 50 pages into the first one by Saturday.

The other series I found, is a new genre to me, and not one that I have ever though of trying: historical romance. Yeah, that's what I thought too... The blurb on the back sounded interesting, and the fact that it was the third in a trilogy, and I like continuity, figured that I could give it a try. The author is Hope Tarr, a romance author apparently growing in popularity. Her series is set in Victorian London, England, a fave setting of mine, and I guess that's why I'd figured I'd try it. The three books are: Vanquished, Enslaved, and Untamed.

I got through the first book right quick after I finished Broken (on Friday or Saturday, I think). The second book is a bit slower for me to get into, but all in all, they're pretty quick reads. I'm hoping to get the last two books read by the end of the week, Saturday.

Oh, and today, since I was having a bit of time getting into the second Hope Tarr book, I started on the 7th Women of the Otherworld (Kelley Armstrong) book. It's back to hardcover with this one, so it'll take me longer to read the same amount of pages as in the previous 4 paperbacks. I'm hoping to get at least to p. 100 by Saturday.

The number of books, I'm checking out from the library, oi...at least I'm saving LOTS of money! On the note of checking books out... I've been reading the 50 Book Challenge Thread, and looking for ideas to add to my To Read List (as if I NEED any more....) and I found a book series based the on the TV show Monk. The show is cute, so I figure the books'll be quick mystery-type reads, peppered with the usual Monk craziness. I put the first 4 or so on hold at the library, and I'm waiting for them all to come in. I like to check books out in batches, that way it's easier for me to keep track of the due dates. And if I check out a few in a series, I don't have to run to the library, fervently searching for the next one, as soon as I'm done with one.

Okay, let me put up "The List", including my in-progress ones:

1. Grave Sight by Charlaine Harris
2. Grave Surprise by Charlaine Harris
3. Moon Called by Patricia Briggs
4. Newjack: Guarding Sing Sing by Ted Conover (for my Criminal Justice Class)
5. Courtroom 302 by Steve Bogira (for my Criminal Justice Class)
6. Bitten by Kelley Armstrong
7. Stolen by Kelley Armstrong
8. Dime Store Magic by Kelley Armstrong
9. Industrial Magic by Kelley Armstrong
10. Haunted by Kelley Armstrong
11. Broken by Kelley Armstrong
12. Vanquished by Hope Tarr
13. Enslaved by Hope Tarr (in progress)
14. No Humans Involved by Kelley Armstrong (in progress)

So the updated count: 12/50!!!

I'm moving right along in my reading. I may make it all the to way to 50 before the year is done after all!

  • Finish Enslaved by Sat 11 July
  • Read Untamed by Sat 11 July
  • Read at least to p. 100 in No Humans Involved
  • Start and read at least to p. 50 in Night Rising

Looks like some of the books I had planned for the summer will get pushed back a bit, but the summer is still FAR from finished, so I may get even more reading done than I'd planned. I'll check back in by next weekend!

Thursday, July 2, 2009


Purple Pinwheels Quilt
It's been bugging me for about two days now. I had a feeling that I counted my squares wrong. Well, I went over and over the photos, and I saw that I added 5 and 5 and got....0. Yes, that's right...zero.

I wasn't going to repost the photos...but I figured out a way to do it, without uploading them twice. So, here are all the photos I've got of squares...

Now, counting...again! First photo: 10 Soft Navy, 10 Light Raspberry, and 10 Claret Fleck; for a total of 30! Second photo: 45 Soft White, and 30 Claret; for a total of 75! Third photo: 45 Soft White; for a total of 45. So: 30 plus 75 plus 45 equals...150!

UPDATE: I just checked my last post. I had all the photo totals correct. It's just when I went up add everything up, I didn't count right. Well, I guess I should know better than to do arithmatic after midnight...on Prednisone.... Oh...look at the time! It's past midnight...I'll never learn...

Monday, June 29, 2009

Square Update & First Two Rows Whipstitched

Purple Pinwheels Quilt
Here is the crocheting I had done last week up until Friday. Didn't have a chance to get any done Saturday (see two posts ago). And Sunday and today, I could not find my G-hook. This evening, I was able to go out to Michael's and get another G-hook and an H-hook. I haven't done any crocheting yet this evening, but may whip together 10 or so squares before bed.

Here is my photo progress. First, is a photo of the squares I had done since my last squares update.
That's 45 squares in soft white.

I promised in my last squares update, to post the totals, and how many I need for the whole quilt. So here it is:

  • Soft White - 90/336
  • Soft Navy - 10/192
  • Light Raspberry - 10/144
  • Claret Fleck - 40/48

  • Soft White & Light Rasp. - 0/48
  • Soft White & Claret Fleck - 0/48
  • Light Rasp. & Claret Fleck - 0/48

Total: 140/864

So, using Mary's Saltine Smackdown rules, I've got 140 solids, giving me 140 points! I'll keep the totals updated as my quilt progresses.

Now.... (drum roll please!) what you've all been waiting for! The photo of the first two rows of one of the blocks!

There it is, in all its glory! I'm just doing one block at a time...for now. There are six blocks total each one 12 x 12 squares big, for a total of 144 squares per block. As you can also see from the above photo, I'm doing the join across, then join down method. I did join the Light Raspberry "cubes" in the corners together, using the same color yarn, but that's because I didn't want the Soft Navy showing through.

Here is a close-up of a Light Raspberry corner:

And here is a close-up of the middle part:

That's all for now, time to plan!

Plan for the week:
Finish the 8 remaining Claret Fleck solids, get at least 60 soft white solids, get at least 5 bi-color squares done, and see what I can piece together. Whew! That looks like a LOT of work! Especially considering that the week is progressing to the halfway mark. Well, it looks like I better get crocheting!

Sunday, June 28, 2009

50 Book Challenge

On Crochetville, there is a CAL that is making it into a TON of people's siggys. The 50 Book Challenge. Here is a link to the thread, for any Crochetville members who want to check it out (though I think most of you know about it :).

The only problem with me participating, is that I'm starting in late June, about halfway through the year. I'll try and see if I can remember the books I've read since January, I'm sure I'll be able to remember a bunch.

With no further ado, here is my list.

1. Grave Sight by Charlaine Harris
2. Grave Surprise by Charlaine Harris
3. Moon Called by Patricia Briggs
4. Newjack: Guarding Sing Sing by Ted Conover (for my Criminal Justice Class)
5. Courtroom 302 by Steve Bogira (for my Criminal Justice Class)
6. Bitten by Kelley Armstrong
7. Stolen by Kelley Armstrong
8. Dime Store Magic by Kelley Armstrong
9. Industrial Magic by Kelley Armstrong
10. Haunted by Kelley Armstrong
11. Broken by Kelley Armstrong (in progress)

Most of this list, I read after the semester was over, starting apporimately mid-May. As you can see, I like series, and I'm reading through Kelley Armstrong right now. There are 4 more books in her Otherworld series that have already been published (Frostbitten coming out in October), and two (of 3?) book published in her Darkest Powers YA series.

So, I've got 6 more Kelley Armstrong books on the to-read list. Then I'll probably go back to the Harper Conelly books (The first two in the list), then I'll either do more Patricia Briggs, Karen Chance, or the Southern Vampire Mysteries by Charlaine Harris (the books that the TV series True Blood is based on). At least that's the tentative plan for the summer.

So, counting the books I've read so far...I've got 10/50!

I'll keep updating this list, adding books as I finish them. I'm hoping to get through the rest of the Kelley Armstrong books by the end of July, and possibly simultaneously get started on The Host by Stephanie Meyer, and get started on re-reading Angels & Demons by Dan Brown (with the movie out and all).

That's all for now, will update, when there's something to update!

My Lovely Saturday Evening!

Not quite related to crochet, but I did say that this blog was for me to narrate my crocheting while I'm dealing with my newly (finally!) diagnosed Ulcerative Colitis...

I spend the evening in the ER, as my symptoms got more severe the previous night and this past morning and early afternoon. After quick consultation with my GI doc, he recommended that I go to the ER for IV steroids, IV fluids to alleviate my dehydration, some blood work, and some tests (x-ray, etc). We got to the hospital by 5 pm earlier today, and I was discharged a little after 11pm.

Along with all the fluids, and steroids, they found I had low potassium, so they gave me a potassium drip (not something fun...it burns....).

The good news, is other than all the other stuff I've got wrong with me...lol...they didn't find anything drastically bad that I had to be admitted or even left for observation overnight, and I left feeling even better that I had felt the previous day. The sucky news is, I'm done with the Entocort EC (steroid) that I had been taking for the past 2 weeks, and now I'm on Prednisone, a pretty strong steroid.

At least I'm going in for an app't with my GI doc on Tuesday morning, so he'll see if he wants me to stay on the Prednisone or not. Plus I have felt a lot better ever since they gave me that first IV infusion of steroids when I got to the ER.

We'll see tomorrow how I feel, and hopefully I'll be able to do both an update on the crocheting I've done recently, and get some more crocheting done (didn't have a chance to do any today).

Good night!

Wednesday, June 24, 2009

More Squares

Purple Pinwheels Crochet Quilt

It's been a while since I've posted. Mostly because I didn't make much more progress on my squares for a while. This past weekend and Monday and Tuesday night, I got a bunch done though.

I have not started piecing them together. Several reasons: I'm not making the squares following the block pattern. Right now, I'm just making one-color squares from each of the yarns. I have yet to attempt a bi-color square, but I will get there...eventually. Another reason: I don't have the tapestry needle yet, needed for the whip stitching. Yes, I could do it other ways, but that seems to the easiest. Before I went out and bought one, I wanted to check my Mom's sewing supplies, and see if she had one. Well, last night she checked, and no success. So, it seems a visit to a craft store is in order. YAAAAAY!!!!!!

So, quick square count. Each of the above big stacks is 10 squares, and the lone little stack up front is 5. That makes 30 squares of the claret fleck and 45 squares of the soft white.

Let me check the totals from last time:

Again, each stack is 10 squares. From left to right, 10 soft navy, 10 light raspberry, and 10 claret fleck. Total from last time: 30 squares.

Total from this time: 75 squares. Grand total: 105 squares!

Plans for the week. I hope to get at least 30 more squares done by Friday, or an ideal total of 55.

UPDATE: I edited this post to add photos the next day. Wednesday night, I got a total of 20 squares done in the soft white. Bringing my total up to....125! Next time I'll post how many I need of each color for the finished product!

Thursday, June 18, 2009

First Photos

My how time flies. I though I'd be able to put a post up with photos on Monday or Tuesday, but I wasn't feeling up to it. The steroids I started last week really knocked it out of me.

So now, I come armed with photos and progress reports of my crocheting thus far. (Which really isn't as far along as I'd like to be, but there's still time).

So here goes (in order of which I've done the most work on):

Purple Pinwheels Crochet Quilt:
(The be-all, end-all of all crochet projects. A crochet afghan...quilt...made from little granny squares all sewn together in a quilt design.)

I'm using Red Heart worsted weight yarn in soft white, soft navy, light raspberry, and claret fleck. (clockwise, starting with the biggest!)

I had a chance to take a few photos Monday evening (or was it Sunday evening?) showing my progress with the squares. At that point I had gotten 10 done in three of the colors. When I first started out, I wasn't weaving in my ends as I went, and that proved to be more work later. To sit down and weave in 20-some ends in tiny little granny squares is definitely a challenge. The good news is, that later in the week, I came up with an easier way to do it, and started weaving in my ends as I go. That way, though my "square per hour" productivity has decreased a bit, when I'm finished with a square, I'm finished with a square. So, here are my first stacks of squares.

Okay, here's the story about this bad boy: It was late, I was tired. I was doing something else while crocheting. Either watching TV, or reading the Crochetville forums. I get to the end of the round, slip stitch it together, pull up a loop and cut it.... All is well and good with that, except that the design calls for TWO rounds.

So I have this little round thing, and I'm thinking what can I do with it? I guess the tired brain got a little bit too creative... So I started the second round with another color. (Note: I have never joined another color like this before, so I sort of make up my own method.) Well, lo and behold, the little round thing turned into a cute little square! I think it's rather adorable. And I was all gung ho about continuing, but then I realized I was using yarn that was bought for a specific project, in a specific amount, and if I keep going, I'm going to have a large afghan before I know it, and use up all my yarn.

So I left the little bugger the way it was, and I think I'll make something from it. Either keep adding rounds and make a big square afghan, or add a few more rounds and stop and make a bunch of squares like that, and sew them together to make a big afghan. Who knows? Back to the quilt afghan.

I've also whipped up about 10 or so more squares in the claret fleck since that photo was taken. Didn't have much crocheting time this week, so I haven't gotten as far as I planned. Hopefully I'll get at least 30 or 40 more squares done by the end of the weekend!

On to the next project:

Lilac One Square
(from a Red Heart pamphlet, all using worsted weight yarn, and all based on a square design, and all using pretty much just double crochet stitches)

Here's a photo of how the finished throw will look:

Hopefully the photo is good enough that you can see the design. Now, for the yarn that I bought for it:

Well, that's all for now. I have a pattern (for an afghan) that I've had for a few years that I've found recently, and I'd like to make it. But I still need 5 skeins, so I can't really get started on it. I just realized that I never took photos to post info about it. Hopefully next time, I'll photos for that.

That's it for now, need to get back to my squares!

Sunday, June 14, 2009

Start of Crocheting & Start to My Blog

As I've decided to do some crocheting this summer, while I'm trying to force my newly diagnosed Ulcerative Colitis (UC) into remission, I thought I might as well start a blog to keep track of things!

I've also joined crochetville. Which, for now, will probably be the only place I'll be posting the link to this. The folks on CV love to see photos, so hopefully, I can figure out how to get the suckers on here.

I had the chance to go yarn and hook shopping on Friday, and last night, finally got a start on one of my planned projects. Details about all my projects to follow. Just wanted to get my blog started, and put up a first post.

That's all for now. I need to take some photos and do some crocheting!!!