Monday, September 30, 2013

September in Review

September has flown by. I still cannot believe it's already gone. It's been an insanely busy month. I mean just WOAH. We've had lost teeth, colds, FRG functions, school for the kids starting, college for me starting, found kitten, and EVERYTHING breaking. It's really just been utter chaos. The first week of October is packed full and hectic too, but after that, it should definitely calm down and I need it. *PHEW*

On the blog:

Life Happenings & Tummy Grumblings

I've been slacking on my Monday posts lately. Monday is not my friend. The last two weeks have been busy and a bit hectic. I've had a sick daughter, I got sick, a battalion get-together to pack care packages, lost teeth, a found kitten, a battalion brunch with the FRG leaders, messed up internet, a broken garage (that still isn't fixed) - it won't open, and a trip to the local emergency room since they got rid our urgent care on post.

She made it two weeks without getting sick. Thankfully there was no throwing up involved. Just a little bit of a cold - coughing and runny nose. She was good to go the next day.

Sunday, September 29, 2013

NYS Fair 2013

At the end of August, I decided to brave the New York State fair with the kids. I'm pretty nervous around a lot of people and I am even more nervous when it's just me with the kids and not Nick and me - or another adult and me. We drove the hour to Syracuse and parking was AWFUL. It was a bit cloudy and muggy.

We started off by just trying to get our bearings. I had planned/mapped out what we'd do during the day. Our first activity was the Dog Stunt show - these people and dogs have apparently been on Jay Leno, Ellen, and Oprah. They were amazing!! As you can tell by Matthew's face, he was impressed!

We got an early lunch - around 11:30 - and walked around a bit. We decided to go to the circus to try and hold off on the rides in case the kids got stomach aches. Plus it was really hot and we wanted to get in the shade for a bit. The circus wasn't really the best and I was surprised at how skimpy the ringmaster's outfit was...she was getting catcalled as well...which was just gross. But it did get us rested and cooled off for the next part of our fair time.

 We started off with a caterpillar rollercoaster - which I didn't particularly want to go on because it looked pretty rickety and it was two levels. I went on since I didn't know how the kids would react since they had never been on anything like it. They loved it!

Their favorite of the day was the super slide. They went on this one countless times.

 We got some cotton candy in between rides - and more water. It really was hot that day.
After the rides started getting more crowded, I took the kids to an ice cream stand and we found a seat for the sea lion show. The sea lion show was my favorite part of the day. It was so so funny.

We waited around to get our pictures taken with the sea lions!

Other awesome parts:
  • There was a motorized dog that a state trooper was controlling. He had the remote and a headset and would go hide incognito. As we passed, the dog started talking to us and the kids thought that was just the coolest!
  • We got to see real bears up close!!
  • The food was inexpensive and so was the water. It was everywhere too.
Some complaints (I have them LOL):
  • I wasn't able to find any fried candy bars that they boasted about having. Oreos and Twinkies were everywhere, but no Snickers :(
  • Some of the people working the rides for the kids were rude (not all, but most). I understand that they are in the heat and kids were being crazy, but my kids weren't. They were very polite and waited their turn. We about got our heads chewed off by one employee who was having everyone exit in the enter and enter in the exit - because we went to the WRONG gate. 
  • The circus was just subpar and again the ringmaster's outfit was not appropriate.
  • It was a bit hard to navigate. I feel like as big as it was, it should've had signs to tell you where you were or what activities they had where. Even with a map, it was hard to know if we were lost or not.
  • The bleachers we sat on for the sea lion show had these pipes as rails. I guess the one we sat near had a wasp's nest inside of it. So wasps kept flying out of the end of the pipe that was right next to me :/
Overall, we had a great time though. We ended up leaving right after the sea lion show because a ton more people showed up and it was getting hectic and crowded. The kids were getting ruder (not mine, but other people's) and the parents weren't doing anything about it. It was just time to go.

Saturday, September 28, 2013

Monster High [Book Review]

#1 in Monster High series
Kindle Edition, 247 pages
Published September 1st 2010 by PoppyASIN: B003JTHXG8

Find on Goodreads

Friday, September 27, 2013

Nail Files #91

I decided to be brave and try out the gradient nail technique that is so popular. I used Jennie's (our lovely host) video tutorial and did a three-color gradient. I wish I remembered exactly what polishes I used for I'm going to make an educated guess: base is OPI Pink Friday, middle is Sinful Colors Island Coral, and tip is Essie Watermelon.

It was really easy to do...funny enough my right hand looked better than my left. :)

Thursday, September 26, 2013

A Storm of Swords [Book Review]

#3 in Song of Ice and Fire saga
Paperback, Trade paperback Reissue, 1177 pages
Published May 28th 2002 by Bantam Spectra
ISBN: 0553381709
Find on Goodreads

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Top Ten Best Sequels Ever

Insurgent (Divergent, #2)Dare You To (Pushing the Limits, #2)Unravel Me (Shatter Me, #2)A Storm of Swords (A Song of Ice and Fire, #3)Opal (Lux, #3)The Sea of Monsters (Percy Jackson and the Olympians, #2)Shutdown (Glitch, #3)Lover Awakened (Black Dagger Brotherhood, #3)Catching Fire (The Hunger Games, #2)Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban (Harry Potter, #3)

  1. Insurgent by Veronica Roth: Most of the time in trilogies, the second book sucks really hard, but Veronica Roth is a genius author goddess and Insurgent was even better than Divergent. I can't wait for Allegiant.
  2. Dare You To by Katie McGarry: I'm not a huge fan of contemporary, but McGarry is making me eat my words! Pushing the Limits was amazing. I loved Echo and Noah, but when it came to Beth and Ryan...they just can't be beat. Although I have a feeling Isaiah's story will be my next favorite. Again with another author whose books get better and better.
  3. Unravel Me by Tahereh Mafi: Despite Juliette's whininess throughout the book, Unravel Me is an amazing sequel because you get Kenji...a lot of Kenji. I also understood why everyone was so Team Warner - and yup...I'm Team Warner now too. Mafi made me cry towards the end of this whole world was shattered.
  4. A Storm of Swords by George R.R. Martin: I'm only about a quarter of the way into Feast for Crows and obviously haven't read Dance with Dragons, however, #3 is probably always going to be my favorite book of the saga. It has just the right amount of characters, all the best stuff happens in this one. I'm so excited for Season 4 because shit is about to go DOWN!
  5. Opal by Jennifer L. Armentrout: Another really emotional sequel for me and I have Origin, I just haven't gotten around to reading it yet. I'm currently catching up on NetGalley books. What I really love about Opal is that there are like 3 big events instead of just one at the end of the book. You're like "WOAHHHHH...okay now stuff is going to wrap up...OH NO...okay that's the worst that can happen....*HEARTBREAK*"
  6. Sea of Monsters by Rick Riordan: Grover in a wedding dress. That's about all I need to say here. Okay maybe not. I loved the 3 sisters, I loved Tyson, I loved Grover in a wedding dress. Hermes is awesome. These characters are just the best and the story is hilarious and hard to put down.
  7. Shutdown by Heather Anastasiu: I can't really do spoilers, but Override and Shutdown are both so incredibly action-packed. I did a lot of breath-holding while reading them. I think Anastasiu and the Glitch trilogy are forgotten and underhyped when they really should be up there with the other super powerhouse YA series that ARE hyped up right now.
  8. Lover Awakened by J.R. Ward: Oh, Z. I've read all the books that have been published in the Black Dagger Brotherhood series, but Z remains my favorite brother and story out of all of them. Such a tortured soul. *sigh*
  9. Catching Fire by Suzanne Collins: I hated Mockingjay, so I like to go back in time to a killer book in the trilogy and pretend the trilogy ended differently. They had to go back. AHHHH! Never in a million years would I have thought that after reading the first. The stadium is crazy. Just insanity.
  10. Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban: Although I've read all 7 books, POA remains my favorite. Each time I read it, I love it more. Sirius - all the FEELS. I love how Crookshanks takes a little more spotlight in this book. LUPIN!! HOGSMEADE!!! It's just the best.

Sunday, September 22, 2013

September Ipsy Glam Bag: Classic Beauty

Swatch of POP Beauty lip crayon and Nyx eye shadow.

Nyx eye shadow {in Fantasy}
The NYX Single Eyeshadow packs a punch of color and is incredibly easy to blend. Go edgy or understated effortlessly, and enjoy the luscious, long-wearing color from sunrise to sunset...and beyond! 

Starlooks eye pencil {in Obsidian}
The Starlooks Obsidian Kohl Eye Pencil glide across delicate lids without pulling. Try using this creamy liner to create a smoky eye or use it as a base for eyeshadows on your entire lid. Available in 11 stunning and super saturated shades!

Chella eye highlighter {in Ivory Lace}
Chella's Ivory Lace Highlighter Pencil is a fresh and pretty neutral pencil that will brighten and visibly lift your eyes when lightly applied on the brow bone, dark circles, blemishes and red spots. Draw a line under the brow with this creamy pencil and then pat gently into place using your ring finger. May be used above the brow for additional highlighting, as well as anywhere you would use a concealer. 

Elizabeth Mott It's So Big volumizing mascara
An ipsy exclusive launch! This mascara was created using a unique formula that delivers BIG volume and lengthens and curls your lashes without smudging! The hourglass brush ensures that you get the right amount of mascara applied to each lash. Use the It's So Big Volumizing Mascara with the Lash Card and watch your lashes grow bigger with each layer! 

Pop Beauty pouty pop crayon {in Rose Romance}
POP's Pouty Pop Crayon nourishes, treats, and adds that perfectly-plumped pop to lips. These extra-nourishing balms gently bounce onto lips creating a plumped & pillowy pout leaving them with luscious, long-lasting colour with a super-smooth texture. Available in six shades.

Saturday, September 21, 2013

Apple Turnover Murder [Book Review]

*3.5 stars*

#13 in Hannah Swensen series
Kindle Edition, 352 pages
Published February 1st 2011 by Kensington Books
Find on Goodreads

Friday, September 20, 2013

Nail Files #90

So I have been trying to use my striping brush and practice with it. The stripes were a ton easier this time. I attempted to do this cute design with mustaches, but I'm definitely going to need a little more practice with them. You wouldn't think a mustache would be that hard, but they totally were! I decided to switch it up a bit and do a solid nail instead of two mustaches and I used grey (Essie Chinchilly) instead of black...mostly because I don't have a nonglittery black polish.

I also painted my daughter's nails - she picked out an Urban Decay gold metallic polish and we used some little nail stickers to give her an accent nail. The sticker only lasted her like 20 minutes LOL

Wednesday, September 18, 2013

Obsidian [Book Review]

#1 in Lux series
Kindle Edition, 287 pages
Published November 29th 2011 by Entangled Publishing (first published November 23rd 2011)
Find on Goodreads

Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Top Ten Books On My Fall 2013 TBR List

I had participated in Top Ten Tuesday around ten times and then stopped participating because I had more stuff to blog about...I'm finding that I have less and less to blog about now.

This week's topic was Top Ten Books on my Fall 2013 TBR List.  Lately, I have requested a ton of books from NetGalley - and got approved for them, which is super exciting. Then when I went to make this post, I realized that I have a super bad habit of cover judging a book, reading the synopsis, adding it to my TBR if it sounds interesting, and then completely forgetting what it's even about. So even though I at one point read the synopsis, I basically go into most books blindly.

Obviously, I cannot tell you why I'm excited about these books if I have no clue what they are I am rereading the synopses just for this post :)
Legend (Legend, #1)The Raven Boys (The Raven Cycle, #1)Anna and the French Kiss (Anna and the French Kiss, #1)Monsters (Ashes Trilogy, #3)Birthmarked (Birthmarked, #1)RelativityFinale (Hush, Hush, #4)Let the Sky Fall (Sky Fall, #1)Parasite (Parasitology, #1)These Broken Stars (Starbound, #1)

  1. Legend by Marie Lu: Legend was chosen for the series readalong for the Goodreads group I mod for. It's a dystopian that I have been told is incredible.
  2. The Raven Boys by Maggie Stiefvater: I enjoyed Stiefvater's Wolves of Mercy Falls series and was excited to hear she had a new series coming out. I actually won a signed copy of it and it's still been sitting on my shelf just waiting to be read. I was approved for The Dream Thieves (the second) on NetGalley - and so I really need to get this one read asap.
  3. Anna & The French Kiss by Stephanie Perkins: This is my random read for September and also was selected for the BOTM for the Goodreads group I mod for. I'm not a huge contemporary fan or chick-lit fan either. However, I've been told I'm missing out on a great book which is why I'm very excited to read this one.
  4. Monsters by Ilsa J. Bick: This is probably the NetGalley book that I'm most excited about. I got the other two via NetGalley and Ashes was one of the first zombie books I had read. The zombies are incredibly creepy in this one. It's the perfect read for the Halloween season!
  5. Birthmarked by Caragh M. O'Brien: This one is my random read for October and I've heard nothing but good things about it. I don't think I would've added it to my list based on the synopsis, but I love dystopia and again, lots of good reviews!
  6. Relativity by Cristin Bishara: I'm a big fan of wormholes and tv shows and movies with wormholes. I've not yet read many time travel or wormhole books, so I'm really excited about this book. It's another NetGalley book.
  7. Finale by Becca Fitzpatrick: I'm hoping that I can brush up on the first three books without having to a reread. I have been meaning to read this since it was released a year ago.
  8. Let the Sky Fall by Shannon Messenger: It's like Avatar the Last Airbender meets The Wizard of Oz or something, I don't know, but it sounds so good. I love the cover (of course). This one is the September read for Book BFFs and I need to start it asap.
  9. Parasite by Mira Grant: I cannot yet figure out if this is YA or adult. This one involves a genetically engineered tapeworm treatment that worked so well that most every human has one. Unfortunately, now the tapeworms are sick of being parasites and want a life of their own. This seems like such a unique idea and I can't wait to read it. I got it from NetGalley.
  10. These Broken Stars by Amie Kaufman: This one I'm actually currently reading. It's one of my NetGalley books and obviously I found it because of its gorgeous cover. This book is about space travel - and after reading Across the Universe, I'm wanting to read as many space books as I can get my hands on.