Thursday, January 29, 2009

Weekend Assignment : Book Connections

I haven't done assignments from other blogs in a long time. Probably because of this. However, sometimes when you have too much going on, the thing to do is step back and do something you'd like to do. :)

So, I popped over to Outpost Mâvarin (via Mike's Blog, because I noticed he had done the assignment as well) and decided to do the Weekend Assignment.

The assignment is:

Weekend Assignment #252: Where do you get books from?

The answer for me is as wide and varied as my interests.

I do most of my buying at local thrift shops, and second hand book stores, depending on what I am looking for.

With thrift shops I peruse the aisles filling my basket with whatever looks good until there's no more room in the basket or no more money for more books. I love to read, so there is a great deal that will interest me.

At used book stores I tend to have in mind books I'd like to have. For instance, if I have an entire series I'd like to own that is already in print, I'd go to Page One, or Page One 2. I can usually find what I want, in good shape, at a lower price. Which means I can buy more books. Which is huge for me because I buy so many books.

Lucky me, I have family and friends who read almost as much as I do, so many of my books are hand-me-downs. Sometimes I pass these books on, but most the time if I love the book I keep it. I am a book collector, and I have read many of my books two or three times, sometimes as often as seven or eight.

Sometimes I go to the big book stores, like Borders. But those are usually when I need a technical or how to book I don't expect to find used. Perhaps a Photography book, or a Dreamweaver Manual. These are infrequent forays, I probably visit these places less than once a year.

My mother recently bought a Kindle book, ( an e-book reader, or an embedded system for reading electronic books) which I have some interest in. She gets her books online at Amazon, and is very happy with it because it can literally store thousands of books in a tiny space. But she is limited in which books are available right now, and it is expensive. So this will likely be something I wait many years to see if it is practical for me.

Extra Credit:
What was the last book you read, and why?

I am currently reading "Tigana" by Guy Gavriel Kay, because I enjoy a good fiction book to take me away from the realities of my life. And "Tigana" so far is a very, very good book. :)


Thought I'd share a few :)


I am exhausted.

This has been a difficult winter for me.

My father had to have surgery in December to have cancer removed, and he is still having issues we think may be related.

Brian, my fiancé, had a heart attack about two weeks ago, and we've been keeping an eye on that.

My son has been chronically sick since September and we now have an appointment at the Infectious Disease Clinic to try and figure out what it is. (they think it may be something like Lyme disease or some odd something. Nobody knows.) We waited two months for the appointment we had, but missed it when Brian had his heart attack.

I have my wedding in eighteen days, and friends wedding I am photographing in 32 days, a huge event I am helping put on tomorrow (for roughly 150 people) my regular job plus all my photography work I do when I can. None of it is something I don't want to do or take care of, but it is all adding up.

I whine, and In know it. :) I am not looking for sympathy or pats on the back, just feels better sometimes when you write it down.

Monday, January 26, 2009

A Second Look At A First Resolution - Putting My Heart Into It

Like many others I decided to go on a diet this year as part of my New Year's Resolution. I am about 40 pounds over where I'd optimally like to be, and I am not that good at dieting, so I tried to make the resolution something I could stick to by saying I wouldn't "diet" per se, but push myself toward a healthier lifestyle with eating and exercise. A little at a time, small steps I could handle. I wasn't doing badly, but there also was no epiphany either. If I was going to lose any weight or get any healthier it would definitely be over an extended period of time at this rate.

Then something happened that made me take a second look. And not for myself.

My fiancé of six years and I decided this past fall to finally tie the knot and make it official on Valentine's Day. Part of what made me want to lose weight is hoping to be prettier for him on our wedding day. He's also been talking about working on his weight and some other issues, but the fact that he's on the road and eats nearly 75% of his meals at fast food joints doesn't help. I haven't worried too much about it, he wasn't worried and I love him as he is (he returns the compliment generously, telling me frequently how beautiful I am, which doesn't motivate me to stop all my bad eating habits) so we've just kind of gone about our merry ways, every unhealthy one of them.

Then, on Friday the 16th, I got a call from Brian that they were going to medivac him from Roswell to the Presbyterian Hospital. My sweetie was having a heart attack.

He told me it was a minor attack, thank goodness or I would have fallen apart. I managed to keep it glued together while I waited for his plane to come in, where I ran to his side to hold his hand and listened to the doctor tell us it wasn't minor at all. If he hadn't sought treatment when he had, the results could have been very grim indeed.

I went to my mother's Friday night so I could be closer to the hospital, where I fell asleep quickly from exhaustion. Saturday I went to his room and helped his wash his hair, helped him eat past all the tubes and wires, and considered how lucky I was to have him. Saturday night I went home to our bed, where I cried most of the night in terror... how close I came to losing him, how real the loss could be, it was a wake up call.

The next day we discussed what had gone through his mind during the attack, and what was going through mine. We have five children between the two of us, three still at home. He knew his death would mean leaving us not only broken from his loss, but in serious financial need. That worried him. I could care less about the finances, but trying to picture the future without him made me feel like I was standing on the top of the Empire State Building with no railing... in a high wind storm. But I couldn't forget how important the kids are, losing either of us would be too hard on them, and we both knew some changes have to be made.

With his discharge and gradual recovery over the past week we have had to change everything in a radical way I would never have considered before the attack. He quit tobacco which I never thought he would do for anyone or anything. And no more fast food, a serious low sodium diet, low fat, high in all the greens and grains and heart healthy foods that we can cram into his picky eating habits. He's been sooo good. He even eats oatmeal now, which he hates. To support him I eat all the same things and have all the same restrictions. Not only does it help me know what he's going through so I can work to make meals appealing, but it accomplishes my original resolution in a way I had never expected.

Funny, but when I started my diet it was mostly for me, and a little for him. I wanted to be healthy and leaner, I wanted to be thinner for the fellow I love. Now it is mostly for him and I am benefiting. Hopefully we will both get a little leaner, but in the long run what I really want is time. Years more to snuggle happily with the man I'll be calling my husband in a few weeks.

Now that's a resolution worth sticking to ;)