Monday, July 28, 2014

Rocks, Paper, Flowers

Most of you know that my sweet friend, Katie, had her first EVER book published. DoodleBug and I were lucky enough to get ourselves on the invitation list for the book launch party! (AND, stick with me to the end because the publisher is letting me give a copy away to a lucky reader!)

It was so nice and Katie read for us towards the end.

Lots of fellow school staff and faculty were there to cheer her on:

We're quite a talkative bunch. But, when Katie was reading from her book, she had our undivided attention:

The book is great. And not just because she's a friend. It is a good read.

Somewhere around Chapter 10, I realized that I had to slow it way down. Because I didn't want to get to the end of the book. I was caught up and I didn't want it to end.

I'm just going to put my review right here for y'all:

Wow. I would say, "What a great book," and leave it at that but I would be leaving out so many wonderful things about this wonderful book by Katie Sullivan. ROCKS, PAPER, FLOWERS is more than a book. It's a cathartic experience. It's personal. It's relatable. On every level. It's a book about sisters- one of the best relationships a girl can have. And it's about mothers and daughters and love and loss. It's about not only having people in your life to lean on but also about having the courage to actually lean on them. It's about waking up and moving on and taking memories with you as encouragement instead of baggage. It's about personal growth and the fact that it's never too late to learn and do that growing. This book is a must read for anyone who has experienced loss and has difficulty with the grieving process. But, at the same time, it is also for those who have not experienced close loss as serves as a beautiful, gentle reminder to pay attention and appreciate those who are dear to us while they are here with us. A most beautifully written book that will run you through the gamut of emotions from sorrow to joy to sadness to laughter and back again and again. You'll laugh, you'll cry and then you'll call those you love and send them a copy of the book. 

I promise my review is an honest one. And, should y'all decided to give it a read and can't wait to see the results of the giveaway, just go over to Holladay House Publishing and grab one! I've linked you right to Katie's book page (it's available in hardback and paperback).

If you want to wait and try to win a copy, just leave me a comment that you want to enter the giveaway! That's all there is to it!

Well, except that, IF you share this post on Facebook, other social media or your own blog, let me know and I'll gladly give you extra entries for each share!

Katie and DoodleBug

Friday, July 25, 2014

Heads Up, Y'all

I just wanted to give everyone a heads up that I will be posting THE book review AND a giveaway on Monday of my friend's new book!

That's right!

This friend:

Wrote this book:

And I get to review it and offer a giveaway of one copy to one of my wonderful readers! IF you just can't wait, click the picture of the book and the link will take you straight to the order page! :)

See y'all Monday!

Meanwhile, have a most wonderful weekend!

Thursday, July 24, 2014

Happy Twenty Three!

It's DoodleBug's 23rd birthday today! WooHoo!

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Happy Birthday sweet girl! 

Wednesday, July 23, 2014

Birthday Hodgepodge

Yet another summer Wednesday has arrived. I thought summer was going by nice and slow but now I realize that just isn't so. School will be starting back before I know it and I'm not sure I'm all that ready. 

Meanwhile, there's the Hodgepodge to keep us happy. And inside on our computers. Where it's nice and cool! 

1. When I look at the sky I feel different things depending on how the sky appears at that time. When the sky is Carolina blue, as it is most days around here, I feel calm and happy. When there are clouds that form pictures, I feel like a kid. When there's a storm brewing or those huge, billowy clouds are present, I feel the insignificance of man as compared to God. When it's a nighttime sky, I am in awe of the beauty and vastness of the universe.  

2. If you had to run for political office, which one would you run for? Do you have any real desire to actually do this? I would not run for political office for anything or anyone. EVER. 

3. What scent makes you think of home? Homemade bread. But it's weird because it reminds me of my childhood home NOT my home now. I guess the scent now would be sunscreen. Or pluff mud. LOL

4. How often do you take a step back to think about where you're headed in life? Do you need more or less self-reflection? I try to take a step back often, just to become more aware of where and who I am at the moment. I don't like it when I get ahead of myself, if you know what I mean. Self-reflection can be good and bad, depending. It's good when I can grow from it. It's bad when it turns into regret or self doubt. 

5. July is National Ice Cream Month...besides a cone, what's your favorite food item to top with ice cream? Hot apple pie or any fruit cobbler! YUM!

6. What might your autobiography be called? Child, Please. 

7. Your least favorite mode of transportation? Why? This is a hard one. I don't like trains because of my experience with a steam engine, cowboys and Indians when I was little. I am not a fan of planes because of claustrophobia and the fact I don't like the idea of plummeting through the sky towards the earth. I don't like to ride in cars for long periods of time because I don't like not being able to get up and move around. So---ALL that being said, if I had to pick one as my least favorite, it would probably be the train because I do ride in the car and I have flown several times but I've NEVER gotten on a train again. You can read that story HERE if you want. 

8.  Insert your own random thought here. It's the day before DoodleBug's 23rd birthday--though I have no idea how that happened! Happy day before your birthday, DoodleBug! 

Have a great week, y'all!

Monday, July 21, 2014

Saturday Downtown

How does one get a day of total enjoyment during her summer of discontent? She goes downtown to the farmer's market with a dear, wonderful friend! The sun stayed away, which was nice. But the humidity made up for the sun's absence. No matter! We had fun anyway.

I didn't take a single shot of the fruits and veggies. I think that was because I was so busy filling up my biggest canvas bag with so many of them that I could hardly carry it back to the car! But everything was so beautiful!

I also didn't take pictures of the French bakery we stopped by because the lady doesn't like that. Nor did I take pictures of our lunch. But that was because we were hungry and thirsty and I was all about the eating and drinking more than the picture taking.

We saw some performers and I took pictures of them---the break dancers:

And the singers:

And the lone musicians:

The art is always pleasant to view.

Especially when it's local art that has been a part of the culture for well over 100 years:

There are always dogs galore at the farmer's market. (Some of the vendors leave small coolers filled with water for them- which I LOVE! I will favor one of those stands over the others.)

Even those who can't get around like they used to---

But mostly, it's just the conversation, the laughs and the time spent with a friend.

How was your weekend?