March 28, 2008


I'm going on vacation to the greater Chicagoland area Saturday 3/29 and Sunday. Its our yearly family reunion. We're celebrating Christmas in March, cause thats how we roll.

As a side trip the husband and I are going to see Vantage Point at the Hollywood theater at 4pm. Just in case there are any blog stalkers in the area.

March 24, 2008

Jericho on CBS

My favorite show is Jericho, on CBS. If you remember last year it was canceled after one season, because according to CBS the ratings were not high enough. Fans of the show, worked very hard to bring it back. They sent mountains of nuts to CBS urging them to reconsider. They did and gave us 7 more episodes for a season 2. They brought it back on Tuesday Nights at 9pm central time.

Unfortunately the "Nielsen ratings" weren't good enough for CBS. We all know that Nielson ratings are the ultimate authority. Never mind that
"'Jericho' is unique because the fans saved it -- watching it on the Internet and streaming and iTunes downloads, all those things that are not being counted," said executive producer Carol Barbee in a recent interview.

Thats a stupid move on CBS' part to ignore that. I bought Season 1, I'll buy Season 2, I'd even buy Season 6 (if they'd have let the show go that long). I watch it online. I watched all of Season 1 online, and rewatched some of Season 2 online. I've blogged about how much I like this show, because it makes you think.

People don't play "what if" often enough. Most tv shows are purely 42 minutes of entertainment. Jericho is different. When its over you wonder, what if something happened to the United States? Could I survive? Maybe I should keep more canned food in the house. Maybe I should learn more about wilderness survival. Season 1 made you think about how to become a smarter person, a more prepared person.

Season 2 makes you ask questions. This new government is in place, but who gave them their authority? Its no longer the United States, its now the Allied States. Small name change, but change in meaning, in leadership, in authority. Not many in the town are questioning the new authority. They blindly follow. A few people are different. They ask questions like "who gave these people the authority to govern? Are they even good people?"

CBS brought Jericho back for seven episodes. I have enjoyed each one of them. I am somewhat disappointed in the time slot. They put a show on at 9pm, which I assume is 10 pm eastern. That's bed time for a lot of people and I wonder why the ratings aren't as high as CBS may wish. Why don't they count online viewings and fan support? Have they already forgotten about the nuts? Have they ignored the e-mails sent by me? Even my Mother, who is not very web savvy, took the time and effort to figure out how to send an e-mail to CBS about how much she enjoys Jericho. Is my purchasing power not as great? I guess my fan support of the show doesn't count, because I watched the show online for season one. We all know what little influence the internet has. People who watch stuff online really aren't important. They don't buy things online, they don't have opinions or ways to express them. Its such a shame that my voice doesn't count. I guess it won't matter to CBS that I no longer want to watch shows on their network. I did like Survivor, I've seen almost every episode, but that is 43 minutes of entertainment. I can spend those 43 minutes doing something else. Maybe I'll go surf the web.

March 18, 2008

The Longest Book Title aka On the Edge of the Dark Sea of Darkness

Last week I talked a little bit about Andrew Peterson's new book On the Edge of the Dark Sea of Darkness. I'll start by saying it has a blue cover with gold lettering on the front. Below the title is an oval which gives you a small glimpse of a sea dragon... just kidding. Well not about the book's physical description, but I'll give you a picture to tell you what it looks like on the outside.

Now to tell you about what really matters, whats on the inside. The first few pages give you a "Brief Introduction to the World of Aerwiar", followed by a "Slightly Less Brief Introduction to the Land of Skee". Finally he has an "Introduction to the Igby Cottage (Very Brief)". Already you can get a taste of Andy's sense of humor. (and yes I call him Andy or AP for short)

When the story begins we meet a small family called the Igbys. You have an ex-pirate grandfather, Podo, who battles creatures invading his small garden, and plays jokes on his rival. You have a mother, Nia, who works hard to take care of her children- Janner, Tink, and Leeli. Leeli is the youngest and a great musician (song). She walks with a crutch and has an adorable dog named Nugget, he's as loyal as they come. Tink, is an artist (form) with a very curious stubborn streak. Janner is the oldest, who excels at writing(word).
1 He helps take care of his younger siblings and tries hard to keep them out of trouble, though it doesn't seem to work.

We find them living an an oppressed town run by Fangs.
2 Everyone in the town is fearful of the fangs, which is smart. The fangs are ruthless and mean, no weapons are allowed Podo must even fill out all kinds of forms, just to get a hoe to work in the garden. 3 Glipwood is a very sad place that has very little joy, because the King and been defeated and the land is run by Gnag the Nameless.

On the day of the Dragon festival, Nugget tried to bite a fang. Leeli fights for her little dog, along with her brothers. This starts a major conflict between the Fangs of Dang and the Igby family. Their somewhat happy life in the cottage has been ruined. Fortunately, they have people on their side to protect them. The fangs believe that the Igby family has some knowledge about the Jewels of Anniera (and maybe they do)4, but this family won't give it up, until the time is right.

I loved this book. The characters are amusing, the land is delightful. You have creatures like "toothy cows" and "sea dragons" to watch out for. Each chapter has footnotes that enrich the story. Its a book that you could read several times and find something new each time.

Sometimes when an actor makes an album or a singer tries to tell jokes, you cringe at the results. This is not true of Andrew Peterson. He is a great author, an amazing song writer, and an great guy. I've met him a few times, and he appreciates his fans. He's one of the most down to earth people I know. I encourage you to read his book, and listen to his albums.

A few days ago I had a contest. For those of you who entered the answers are
1. Aedan, Asher and Skye (two boys and a girl. hmm...)
2. Walk is his first album, but Carried Along was his first major release.
3. This one is purely subjective. So I will tell you mine. My favorite album is Love and Thunder. I love it because its a journey. Each song is a part of the whole, and each song has meant something special to me at one time or another.

The winner of the Contest is Jenny. I'll be sending you the book in the mail soon. Thanks to everyone who entered.

1 Word, Form and Song are each one of the T.H.A.G.S. for more information about the T.H.A.G.S. see page 78 of OtEotDSoD
Fangs are terrible creatures like lizards who are mean and love to eat any type of food that is spoiled or rotten. Refer to page 164 of OtEotDSoD for a recipe of Maggot Meatloaf.
3 see page 42 and Appendices for more information about these forms.
4 Do not read page 168 of OtEofDSoD until you read all 167 pages previously. No spoiling the story allowed.

March 17, 2008

Contest Update

The contest for the Andrew Peterson book On the Edge of the Dark Sea of Darkness ends tomorrow at Midnight central time. Which means you get an extra day than I originally stated. If your response isn't e-mailed to me by midnight Tuesday 1/18/08 (which I won't be awake, so if you sneak in a response before roughly 8am Wednesday Morning, I might let that slide). Don't miss out. If I get enough responses, I could possibly add to the prize.

March 13, 2008

Contest Time

Are you ready?
You'd better be ready!
*drum roll please*

Its time for me to officially announce my very first contest! You will have three chances to win. I'm going to give you three questions, for each one you get right, you'll get a chance to win! I'll be picking the winner next Tuesday by drawing names.

Now to answer the most important question for any contest. What do I win? You win a copy of Andrew Peterson's new book On the Edge of the Dark Sea of Darkness.
I started reading this book last week and its very good, I get mad when I have to put it down. I will be posting a full review next week, because I'm part of his blog tour, so be watching for that.

Here are you questions.
1. What are the names of Andrew Peterson's kids? (This novel began as bedtime stories for his children)

2. What was the name of Andrew Peterson's first album? (He was first a musician, then an author)

3. What is your favorite Andrew Peterson song / lyric and what you like about that song / lyric?

Now, I do realize that some of you may not have ever even heard of Andrew Peterson. He is a singer/songwriter/novelist/storyteller/silly song writer, who lives in Nashville. He writes songs that make you think, he has lyrics that you can listen to over again and discover something new each time. You can find some of his songs on his website, there are also some You Tube videos up.
A while back I went to his Christmas Concert. It was such a great experience. I dare you to check out his stuff and remember each question you answer will get you a chance to win his new book.

March 7, 2008

My Closet (or should I say closets)

Over at Jen's blog we were talking about closets. She talked about how hers was kind of small and how she would like to redo her floor plan so she could have more room.

This is one area I have been blessed! My 2 bedroom, 2 and a half bathroom home has a small pantry (sort of a closet) in the kitchen, a coat closet on the main floor, and a full size closet in the basement. Then you walk upstairs. We have a walk-in closet in the hall, with shelves and bars for storage. Our spare bedroom has a large closet along one wall. Now you get to the master bedroom. We have two closets in there. The smaller one (first picture) belongs to my husband and the large, lighted, beautiful one complete with organizers, shelves, poles at various heights, belongs to me and only me.

March 5, 2008

The Latest and the Greatest

Greatest - If you guys aren't watching Jericho on CBS, you really have to start. Every Tuesday night my husband and I are glued to the tv. Its a show about the "end of the world as we know it." Season one starts with the news that several US cities were bombed. This small town called Jericho, now has to find out how they will survive this crisis. National government is gone along with the usually supply routes. Its one of those shows that make you think. If you're interested CBS allows you to watch them all online. The greatest thing about this is if you are a nerd who is into the whole conspiracy around a show. There are a lot of companion sites to Jericho. I'd give you more information about them, but I've only discovered a couple. Great great show.

Even if you don't watch will you click on the links? I want CBS to keep this show around. If you remember this was the show that they showed the first half, took a 3 month break then wondered why the ratings weren't as high the second half. It got canceled, but then fans did this wonderful thing. They convinced CBS that they needed to bring this show back. They sent tons of peanuts and CBS gave us 7 more episodes. So far no one knows if there will be a Season 3, but I hope they will keep it around. We do not have enough shows that make you think.

Latest - Soon I will be holding my very first contest. I just got an e-mail about it yesterday. I'm not yet sure how I will pick a winner, but the prize will be a new book coming out March 18. Its called "On the Edge of the Dark Sea of Darkness" and is written by Andrew Peterson. More to come.

March 4, 2008

Snow Storm in STL

So the weather people say we're supposed to get mountains of snow today. I expected to wake up to a winter wonderland, instead I saw streets that had dustings of whiteness, which I assume was salt. Now its picked up a bit. I rely on a building that is across the river to judge how good visibility is and there fore how much snow is coming down. When I can see it, its good. When I can't, the snow, rain, or fog is really thick.

People in St. Louis are funny. When you look out into the parking lot you see all these cars with their wiper blades sticking straight out. I assume it is so they don't stick to the windshield, but really when have they stuck so much you couldn't unstick them? Then you have the people who decide to cover the windshield with a blanket or a piece of cardboard. In theory that seems like a good idea. Then you don't have to scrape your window. Unfortunately it seems like the wind will blow their stuff off, or even when it stays in place, you still have to deal with a big wet something. Do you put it in your car so that everything gets all wet and snowy? I just don't know.
Then the people here are such wimps when it comes to snow. Even though the ground was dry at 9:00am, schools were still cancelled. People didn't come into work. I mean its just some wet water, they sky is not falling, the world is not ending. Maybe I'm just sad, because work never gets cancelled because of snow. I want to spend a day at home roasting marshmallows in the fireplace with a good book and some hot chocolate.