Monthly Archives: November 2015

‘Username: Evie’ by Joe Sugg [ REVIEW ]

Username Evie

One of my goals for 2015 is to get back to my roots and read more books. As the great Frederick Douglass said, ‘Once you learn to read, you will be forever free.’ Books are a passion – nay, an obsession of mine and always have been. I grew up in the library and my parents fostered my love of reading and learning. With books I have lived a thousand lives, found myself absorbed in different worlds, and learned immensely more than I could have otherwise. So put up your feet, grab a good paperback and let’s get reading!

Username:Evie is a graphic novel by the Youtuber Joe Sugg and his ‘Sugg Squad’ team of an illustrator, narrator, bubble maker, etc. It is ambitious project and a good story. The illustrations are rich and interesting. The story line is easy to follow and uplifting. We follow Evie, a social outcast who is mourning the loss of her father and dealing with having to move in with her rival (and cousin’s) family. She enters the alternate universe through her laptop that her father created for her before he passed called E.SCAPE and her good heart spreads joy and happiness. When her cousin Mallory discovers the program and enters the alternate universe behind Evie her hatefulness spreads discord and creates monsters. It is a thrilling story that touches on bullying, friendship, forgiveness, love and self worth.

four_half-stars_0

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Click here to see my goals for 2015

You can also see my goals for 2014, 2013, 2012 and my bucket list!

 

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Lush : Rose Jam Bubbleroon Bubble Bar [ REVIEW ]

One of my *unofficial* goals for 2015 is to relax more. As the great Leonardo da Vinci once said, ‘Every now and then go away and have a little relaxation. To remain constantly at work will diminish your judgement.” What is more relaxing close to home than a luxurious bath?  This year I will review products from my fav shop that makes fresh and handmade beauty goods, Lush! So draw up a bath, get a good book and a glass of wine, and let’s relax!

Lush’s Rose Jam Bubbleroon Bubble Bar is not only a mouthful but also the reason for a wonderful bath! It smells lovely, not your average rose scent. There’s something spicier about it, something richer. It has a creamy center that moisturizes the skin and it crumbles slowly under the running water to turn the water a beautiful pink color with mountains of bubbles.

This is a great bubble bar! All boxes checked, great scent, long lasting, beautiful water color, lots of bubbles. You could probably break it in half, but I used the entire bar and it seemed like the perfect amount. I will definitely be purchasing this bubble bar again!

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Halloween Lush Products I’ve tested:

Lord of Misrule Bath Bomb, Sparkly Pumpkin Bubble Bar

Mother’s Day Lush Products I’ve tested:

Rose Bubble Bar, Secret Garden Bath Bomb, Mother Superior Bubble Bar

Easter Lush Products I’ve tested:

Immaculate Eggception, Golden Egg, Fluffy Egg, Bunch of Carrots, Bubblegrub

Other Lush Products I’ve tested:

Blackberry Bath BombTwilight Bath Bomb, Sakura Bath Bomb, Phoenix Rising, Honey Bee Bath Bomb, Space Girl Bath Bomb, Big Blue Bath Bomb, Granny Takes a Dip Bath Bomb, Rose Queen Bath Bomb, Ickle Baby Bot, Sex Bomb Bath Bomb, Yuzu & Cocoa Bubble Bar, Karma Bubble Bar, Frozen Bath Bomb,

*This post is not sponsored

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Click here to see my goals for 2015

You can also see my goals for 2014, 2013, 2012 and my bucket list!

‘A Knight of the Seven Kingdoms’ by George R.R. Martin [ REVIEW ]

a-knight-of-the-seven-kingdoms-jpg

One of my goals for 2015 is to get back to my roots and read more books. As the great Frederick Douglass said, ‘Once you learn to read, you will be forever free.’ Books are a passion – nay, an obsession of mine and always have been. I grew up in the library and my parents fostered my love of reading and learning. With books I have lived a thousand lives, found myself absorbed in different worlds, and learned immensely more than I could have otherwise. So put up your feet, grab a good paperback and let’s get reading!

‘A Knight of the Seven Kingdoms’ by George R.R. Martin compiles the first three novellas that take place nearly a century before the events of A Song of Fire and Ice. We follow the tales of Dunk and Egg, an unlikely duo. Dunk is a naive knight who blunders his way into finding a squire, Egg- who is more than he seems. Egg’s true name is hidden from all whom they encounter and he has to continually shave his head to conceal his blond hair and the fact that he is a prince. In this time the Targaryen line still holds the Iron Throne and the memory of the last living dragon is not that far gone. The plots run deep and our heroes ultimately are the most courageous and honorable. It is an captivating story of royal intrigue, powerful foes and ultimately friendship.

Gone from A Song of Fire and Ice in this novel is the normal fare of gore, sex and adult language. There is some of all that to go around but not nearly on the same level. This fact and the styling of Gary Gianni’s illustrations which frequent the pages remind me of a children’s book from the 20’s. Don’t be fooled though, this is no book for children. It is an adventure story, very similar in feel as that of The Hobbit to The Lord of the Rings trilogy.

four_half-stars_0

_________________________________

Click here to see my goals for 2015

You can also see my goals for 2014, 2013, 2012 and my bucket list!

 

Lush : Frozen Bath Bomb [ REVIEW ]

One of my *unofficial* goals for 2015 is to relax more. As the great Leonardo da Vinci once said, ‘Every now and then go away and have a little relaxation. To remain constantly at work will diminish your judgement.” What is more relaxing close to home than a luxurious bath?  This year I will review products from my fav shop that makes fresh and handmade beauty goods, Lush! So draw up a bath, get a good book and a glass of wine, and let’s relax!

Lush’s Frozen bath bomb is a new (fantastic) product and earns two big thumbs up from me! The ‘most magical soak in the kingdom’ smells of uplifting neroli and precious rose oil. The bath bomb dissolves quickly, emitting swirling blue, green and purple froth. One may think of gorgeous blue ocean water until you see the shimmering ‘snow’ swirling like a blizzard. Spot on Lush. Spot on.

OH MY GOODNESS THE SHIMMER/BLIZZARD!!!

The amount of sparking shimmer in this bath bomb is insane. If you don’t like being covered in shimmer after a bath this is NOT the bath bomb for you. The middle school student in me was jumping for joy at the amount of glitter plastered to my skin. (Back in the 90’s we actually applied glitter straight on the skin… ON PURPOSE). Present day Kelly likes a little classy shimmer at the proper time but this was almost too much. If  you spend a little time brushing once you’re dry you can get some of it off. Despite the shimmer overload I absolutely loved this bath bomb!

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Halloween Lush Products I’ve tested:

Lord of Misrule Bath Bomb, Sparkly Pumpkin Bubble Bar

Mother’s Day Lush Products I’ve tested:

Rose Bubble Bar, Secret Garden Bath Bomb, Mother Superior Bubble Bar

Easter Lush Products I’ve tested:

Immaculate Eggception, Golden Egg, Fluffy Egg, Bunch of Carrots, Bubblegrub

Other Lush Products I’ve tested:

Blackberry Bath BombTwilight Bath Bomb, Sakura Bath Bomb, Phoenix Rising, Honey Bee Bath Bomb, Space Girl Bath Bomb, Big Blue Bath Bomb, Granny Takes a Dip Bath Bomb, Rose Queen Bath Bomb, Ickle Baby Bot, Sex Bomb Bath Bomb, Yuzu & Cocoa Bubble Bar, Karma Bubble Bar,

*This post is not sponsored

_________________________________

Click here to see my goals for 2015

You can also see my goals for 2014, 2013, 2012 and my bucket list!

‘All The Bright Places’ by Jennifer Niven [ REVIEW ]

All-the-Bright-Places

One of my goals for 2015 is to get back to my roots and read more books. As the great Frederick Douglass said, ‘Once you learn to read, you will be forever free.’ Books are a passion – nay, an obsession of mine and always have been. I grew up in the library and my parents fostered my love of reading and learning. With books I have lived a thousand lives, found myself absorbed in different worlds, and learned immensely more than I could have otherwise. So put up your feet, grab a good paperback and let’s get reading!

‘All The Bright Places’ by Jennifer Niven was a hard one for me. It takes on the very adult topic of suicide in the realm of a YA novel. Perhaps this is the root of my issue with it. Although suicide is not only an adult issue and in fact touches the lives of children in immensely personal ways; there can at times in this book be a childishness about the subject. Perhaps if I read it again I would see the reasoning for some things clearer.

This book reminded me of  ‘I Was Here’ by Gayle Forman which focuses on the protagonist taking a journey to understand why a friend committed suicide. This novel places the spotlight on what leads up to the suicide of one of the main characters. The last chapters of the novel shows the other main character trying to figure out what happened and if they could have prevented it. The novel is well written and flows but lacks a few key features. I feel like at times there was a lack of seriousness given to the topic. I also feel like a third person who has admitted suicidal tendencies is ignored – perhaps to their detriment? We never find out.

While I take issue with some aspects of this novel I also think that it is very good. It touches on an emotional level what people (even children) may go through as they consider suicide, and what others deal with in their lives after a loved one takes their own life. It looks at the impact we all make on the world and in our communities. Most importantly it celebrates life.

Niven states at the end of the book how suicide has affected her life, and in actuality, I believe it has probably effected almost everyone lives in some manner. She provides contact info to get help:

Suicide Prevention: afsp.org                                                                                                 Diagnosing Mental Illness in Teens: teenmentalhealth.org                                           Survivors: suicidology.org/c/document_library/get_file?folderId=229&name=DLFE-73.pdf                                                                                   Bullying: stompoutbulling.org                                                                                             Abuse: childhelpusa.org

“If you think something is wrong, speak up.                                                                     You are not alone.                                                                                                                   It is not your fault.                                                                                                                 Help is out there.”

star-four-11-jpg1

_________________________________

Click here to see my goals for 2015

You can also see my goals for 2014, 2013, 2012 and my bucket list!

 

Lush : Karma Bubble Bar [ REVIEW ]

One of my *unofficial* goals for 2015 is to relax more. As the great Leonardo da Vinci once said, ‘Every now and then go away and have a little relaxation. To remain constantly at work will diminish your judgement.” What is more relaxing close to home than a luxurious bath?  This year I will review products from my fav shop that makes fresh and handmade beauty goods, Lush! So draw up a bath, get a good book and a glass of wine, and let’s relax!

Lush’s Karma Bubble Bar is a bubbly bar of spicy goodness. They have recently updated the look of the bar but I got one of the last of the original style. This bar smells heavenly. It has Lush’s signature pine and patchouli fragrance, and creates a mountain of bubbles that lasted me an hour and a half! (I had a really good book and a big glass of wine) 🙂

This bar crumbles quickly under running tap water and just like the bubbles the orange color sticks around the entire bath. The smell is really incredible, and it sticks around the entire time as well! This is another great one for me, I will be purchasing the new version soon!

________________________________

Halloween Lush Products I’ve tested:

Lord of Misrule Bath Bomb, Sparkly Pumpkin Bubble Bar

Mother’s Day Lush Products I’ve tested:

Rose Bubble Bar, Secret Garden Bath Bomb, Mother Superior Bubble Bar

Easter Lush Products I’ve tested:

Immaculate Eggception, Golden Egg, Fluffy Egg, Bunch of Carrots, Bubblegrub

Other Lush Products I’ve tested:

Blackberry Bath BombTwilight Bath Bomb, Sakura Bath Bomb, Phoenix Rising, Honey Bee Bath Bomb, Space Girl Bath Bomb, Big Blue Bath Bomb, Granny Takes a Dip Bath Bomb, Rose Queen Bath Bomb, Ickle Baby Bot, Sex Bomb Bath Bomb, Yuzu & Cocoa Bubble Bar,

*This post is not sponsored

_________________________________

Click here to see my goals for 2015

You can also see my goals for 2014, 2013, 2012 and my bucket list!

‘Toujours Provence’ by Peter Mayle [ REVIEW ]

Toujours Provence

One of my goals for 2015 is to get back to my roots and read more books. As the great Frederick Douglass said, ‘Once you learn to read, you will be forever free.’ Books are a passion – nay, an obsession of mine and always have been. I grew up in the library and my parents fostered my love of reading and learning. With books I have lived a thousand lives, found myself absorbed in different worlds, and learned immensely more than I could have otherwise. So put up your feet, grab a good paperback and let’s get reading!

‘Toujours Provence’ by Peter Mayle is an easy conversational read about Mayle and his wife’s lives in Provence. It is the follow up book to his ‘A Year In Provence‘- a fantastic read that has sat on my bookshelf for years. I recently picked up this this book as well and it is fantastic. A colorful read of their continued exploits- mainly gastronomic in nature. We learn all about his exploration of wine, pastis and education in truffle hunting. It feels Provencal in nature, no pressure is put on the reader but to enjoy. It is not as strong as ‘A Year in Provence’ but is a lovely follow up. I also purchased his third novel in the series, ‘Encore Provence” which I hope will be just as entertaining!

four_half-stars_0

_________________________________

Click here to see my goals for 2015

You can also see my goals for 2014, 2013, 2012 and my bucket list!