Monday, January 31, 2011

Have you heard?

It's Busy Bee Lauren's birthday week (Happy Birthday Lauren) and she's giving away a white Diana Mini! I've been wanting my own film camera for years. I've always used my parent's old camera from back in the 1980s. It's a lovely camera, but how could I not want to have my own white Diana Mini?

Isn't it adorable? Go check out her blog for details on how to enter.

January Books

So instead of doing a twice a year book list of all the books I've read, I going to start doing a monthly book list. That way I can give ya'll some more information about them, other than a quick one liner. These are the books I've read in the month of January.

The Hollow
Set in the town of Sleepy Hollow, The Hollow, follows a young girl named Abbey after the untimely death of her best friend. Being a typical YA novel, there is a beautiful mysterious guy, Caspian, who is very drool worthy. This book doesn't quite live up to its potential. It's book one of three and ends in a very lackluster way. However, since I'm not a quitter, I'll probably read the other two once they come out, just to find out what happens.

Prom & Prejudice
I love Elizabeth Eulberg. If you haven't read her other book, The Lonely Heart Club, go out and do it now. Prom & Prejudice is a modern reworking of Pride & Prejudice. It's done very well, unlike some other disappoints (i.e. Pride and Prejudice and had so much potential and failed miserably). I read this book in a couple of hours and couldn't put it down.

This is the eighth book of the House of Night series. I'm so ready for this series to be over with, but yet there is a ninth and I'm thinking tenth book to follow. I'm not a quitter, so I keep reading to see what happens. This book truly reads like a YA novel (i.e. words such as bullpoopie) and is not one that will stand the test of time, as it's filled with tons of pop culture references. It's brain candy, but I'm started to get tired of a series that I once actually liked.

What else can I say, but that I loved this book. It was on my must read list, but got bumped up to the read now book after a couple discussions with some friends about the male protagonist, Ky. This book reminds me of a cross between 1984, Fahrenheit 451, and The Giver. It's not your vapid, run of the mill YA romance novel, but a beautifully written novel that truly shows how powerful words can be.

Mr. Wilson's Cabinet of Wonder
I had to read this book for one of my classes. It's a strange little book about the owner of the Museum of Jurassic Technology in LA. Have any of ya'll been to it? After reading this book, it's definitely on my bucket list of places to go.

Water For Elephants
I didn't know what to expect from this book. I must say that I was persuaded to read this book because I wanted to see the movie, and my cousin's wife was talking about how good it was. Water For Elephants is a touching story, it flips between a present day Jacob (who's 90 or 93) and the Jacob of his youth. It was painful for me to read as Jacob reminded me of some of my family members who are getting older. However, while not the most pleasant of stories, it did keep me entertained. There were a few details that Gruen included that could have been left to the imagination, but I enjoyed it none-the-less.

Violence: Reflections on a National Epidemic
I had to read this for my new Masculinity and Violence class. It's a pretty interesting read about the constructs of violence in America. It focuses mostly on males and the act of shaming. I probably wouldn't have read this book if I didn't have to, but it was interesting none-the-less.

Hush, Hush
What can I say about Hush, Hush, except "Hello, Patch!"...I've found myself another fictional love. Basically the plot is about Nora who meets this mysterious guy named Patch. As in most books, Patch is more than meets the eye. It's a quick read and would recommend it to anyone. I loved this book.

Raising Cain
I had to read this book for my violence class. This book had nothing new to offer me, but it still was an interesting read. Basically, what the authors are saying, is that boys do not know how to express themselves emotionally. That's why they have so many problems.

I loved Crescendo. Patch is amazing. That's all I've really got to say. It seems to be a trend to make the second book of a series super painful, but it's always worth it when you reach the end. I was super happy with the last chapter of this book, until the last page and a half. Killer cliffhanger! I can't wait until the next book comes out in the fall!

Saturday, January 29, 2011

Happy Saturday

My Saturday is going to be filled with a good work out, homework, Patch, turkey chilli, and trivia night with my co-workers. Today I need some motivation to get things here's my Saturday play list to do just that.

John Lennon -- Instant Karma

Katy Perry -- Hot N' Cold (just got my tickets to see her with J!)

The Black Crowes -- She Talks to Angels

Paramore -- Brick by Boring Brick (I still love this song to pieces)

Taylor Swift -- Long Live

Death Cab For Cute -- I'll Follow You Into the Dark

Muse -- United States of Eurasia

What's on your Saturday playlist?

Friday, January 28, 2011

It's Friday!!

It's Fill in the Blank Friday! I love doing these before I go to work. It gives me a good start to the day. If you decide to play along, go to Lauren's blog and link up :)
Picture Via...

1. If my house was on fire and I could only grab 3 things I'd grab my teddy bear that I've had since I was three (Cherry), my purse, and probably my little travel pillow. I'm sure I'd grab my lap top too if I got to have a fourth item.

2. A smell I really like is my mom's spaghetti when it's cooking, cinnamon, lavender, and fresh laundry.

3. Something you might not know about me is that I'm kind of athletic, despite being so stinkin' uncoordinated. I did tap, ballet, jazz, pointe, and played softball, volleyball, and basketball.

4. Some of my favorite websites to putter about on are etsy, ebay, the many blogs that I'm in love with, my life is average, post secret...

5. This weekend I will be catching up on some homework. I'm having a hard time getting back into the swing of things. I also plan on reading some "fun" books too.

6. Nothing makes me happier than talking to my parents. It's an instant feeling of love and makes me get the warm fuzzies.

7. A bad habit I have is playing with my hair a lot. I tend to run my fingers through it a lot (or at least I'm told). I'm also a huge worrier. I worry that I'm supposed to be worrying about something, but I'm not. Haha, it's a vicious cycle.

Sunday, January 23, 2011

Down in the Dumps...

So it's not a lie when I say I've been in the dumps these past two weeks. It was super hard missing home, but there are a couple of things that get me through this.

I love my skype dates with my parents. I love my Mama and Daddy O to pieces. I love that they learned how to use skype just for me...and I love being able to see their faces whenever I get lonely.

I also get by with a little help from my friends. I'm looking at ya'll. Seriously, my life is so much better with ya'll in it. Thank you.
While I don't always do this first, which is something I need to work on, I pray.
I also get by, by singing this little diddy in my head. In one of my darkest hours, my friend Stacey, told me this is what she sings when she's down. Well I persevered thanks to her and this little song. I'm eternally grateful to Charlotte's Web and Stacey for telling me to "chin up".

Friday, January 21, 2011

It's that time of the week...

It's my favorite time of the week. Make sure you go to Lauren's blog and link up if you play along.

1. My favorite quote is...oh goodness gracious, I have to pick just one? A recent favorite is from Dr. Seuss : "Be who you are and say what you feel, because those who mind don't matter, and those who matter don't mind."

2. A bad habit I have is giggling when it's inappropriate. Apparently I also play with my hair, on a KStew level of proportion. I also worry way too much.

3. The first time I felt like a "grown up" when I finally got to fly from Atlanta to Philadelphia all by my lonesome.

4. Weekends are stressful. Yes I can choose to stay in my pjs, but it's also when I get the most of my homework accomplished.

5. When I was a child I had a teddy bear named Cherry. Cherry was saved from the rejects pile at the mall that were ready to be thrown away. I loved that bear to no end. Cherry survived many tragic incidents...such as getting run over by a train in Colorado. I'm not ashamed to admit that Cherry still sits on my bed.

6. I wish I happy with myself physically, mentally, and emotionally.

7. A secret I have is that I'm afraid that I'll never find Mr. Right and die alone. Being alone scares me more than anything.

Thursday, January 20, 2011

The Giggle Loop

Before you read any further into this post, you may want to watch this video from BBC's Coupling, explaining what a giggle loop is. Warning...once you know what a giggle loop is, you're pretty much out of luck in non-giggling approved situations.

So you ask, Elyse, why did you mention the giggle loop? Well, my friends, I am an awkward laugher. I laugh at situations that I shouldn't and it tends to get me into trouble. This sort of incident happened to occur during the first class of the semester at a very unfortunate moment.
The class is Masculinity and Violence and the professor was going over the reading list. The books are all very heavy material, as they deal with gender constructs, violence and general male-ness. While describing one particular book, the professor was mentioning violent groups and some pretty horrible sexual practices that occur in them. Well, my mind flashed back to an episode of How I Met Your Mother and it kind of reminded me of something my beloved Barney would do. It also reminded me of some unsavory behavior I saw today in Target while walking past a certain section of the pharmacy. Well the next thing I know, I giggle in the middle of the class. I tried to hide it thinking, hoping, praying, no one heard it. WRONG! The professor heard it and asked "Did that trigger something in your memory?" Then I had to explain the How I Met Your Mother situation, since I thought it was a better story than my Target one. Apparently, he was not amused. Awkward moment, accomplished, and the giggle loop strikes again.'s to beginning the semester on an awkward foot.

Saturday, January 15, 2011

Georgia on my Mind...

So, I know I've already done one of these posts about how much I love Georgia...but guess what?? I'm doing another one. Anyways, that's my ode to Georgia for the moment. I love being a Georgia Peach, even though technically we don't grow the most peaches. That'd be California. Really we grow the most peanuts, but nobody wants to be a Georgia Goober. I love my home state so much and I miss it. So here's a list of why Georgia is awesome.

  • Georgia is attracting a lot of super cool production companies. Just a few shows/movies that are/were filmed here. The Vampire Diaries (filmed the next town over from my house), The Dukes of Hazzard, Deliverance, Glory (actually filmed 5 minutes from my house), all the Tyler Perry stuff, potentially The Hunger Games, Zombieland. Just to name a few, but the list goes on longer.

  • We have super cool songs written about us: Georgia on my Mind --I adore both the original and Buble's version; Statesboro Blues -- Allman Brothers are a must; The Devil Went Down to Georgia; Midnight Train to Georgia; The Night the Lights Went out in Georgia; Why Georgia.

  • My family and friends live there...but that's just an obvious reason.

  • People in Georgia are actually polite. I know that not everyone from the south will ask you "How are you?" and genuinely mean it or say "yes ma'am" or "no sir", but it's more common than anywhere else I've been. Being in the Midwest has made me miss this southern hospitality.

  • Super cool people are from or live in Georgia. I.e. Me (just kidding, but seriously), Ludacris, Usher, the Biebs (don't judge us for that one), Ryan Seacrest, Jimmy Carter, Paula Deen...just to name a few.

  • Picture via...

  • I know a lot of people can say this, but I love the history. I worked in the town where Gone with the Wind was based. I worked right down the street from Ashley Oak's plantation. Yes, he's real. Sherman burnt down where I live. I love on old Plantation land. It's just teeming with history.

Image via...

  • The trees. Georgia has beautiful trees...which is something severely lacking in the Midwest.

Alrighty, that little rant is over. But seriously, I do love Georgia.

Friday, January 14, 2011

Fill in the Blank Friday!

It's that time of the week again. I've missed doing this the past couple of weeks. If you want to play along go to Lauren's blog and link up.

1. I feel happy when I finish a really good book, when my Daddy O calls me from work in the morning to tell me good morning, my goodnight conversation with my Mama, the random conversations that I have with my friends, and when I'm snuggled up in my bed with my heated mattress pad on and getting to wake up on my own terms (not the alarm clock's).

2. I get silly when I'm around my family and basically all the stinkin' time. It gets even worse when I'm sleep deprived or had a bazillion icees.

3. Something that makes me sad is when I get that feeling that people don't get me. It's something I worry about all the time.

4. Something that makes me annoyed is Florida and Missouri drivers...they just don't know how, people who talk down to me and try to belittle me, that I'm a frustrated crier...just to name a few.

5. A time that I've been truly surprised when I got into grad school.

6. I am so thankful for my family and friends. I know it's a generic answer, but I am truly nothing without them.

7. I feel loved when I get off the phone with my family and friends from back home. They love me despite my flaws.

Thursday, January 13, 2011

It's been a while...

So I haven't done a post in quite a while. Actually this is the second time I've been on a computer in 3-4 weeks. I went home to Georgia for the holidays, there's more about that to come in the future, and didn't want to waste any of my time with my family. Coming back to St Louis for school has been rough. When I first moved out here, I was fine. I didn't cry, it was like an adventure. However, this time was different. I'm not going to be a Debbie Downer, but I do miss home something fierce. Anyways, just thought I'd drop a quick note saying, "Hi!". More on the holidays and future adventures to come soon...

PS: Enjoy this eye candy...can I just say Holy Crow! Hurry up November!

Picture via Twilight Poison