Daydreaming

I really try not to write whiny posts but damnit buying a house is frustrating! I suppose if it were easy, more people would do it. When I’m completely done with the process, I’m going to have to write Cupcake’s Guide to Buying Your Dream Castle. I feel like I could better guide and inform people of the process than the banks or realtors do. Every time we meet/talk with the bank we’re blindsided with yet a new obstacle to overcome to get the house. Emotionally, every day is a surprise in the sense that I’m either totally relaxed and convinced that it’s going to work out OR freaking the fuck out and convinced that it’s never going to happen. You really test the quality of your deodorant on days like the second option.

Which leads to daydreaming. I sit and daydream or research fun things to do in our new town on my down time. The options are fantastic. The library looks killer from the outside. The amount of hiking trails, parks and dog parks are splendid. I hear new amazing things about the town all the damn time.

Which leads to WHAT IF WE NEVER GET TO LIVE THERE?! Que anxiety on the borderline of panic attack.

I made it to 30 without developing any gray hairs but that may be changing soon.

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Belated Birthday Haul

I’m spoiled rotten by the ones that love me and I’m not afraid to admit it. I had a fantastic birthday and decided I should flaunt some of my gifts.

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Flowers from my husband (he really knows how to pick the right ones for me) and my favorite chocolate milk. (Not pictured.)
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Birthday orchids from my uncle. I only recently have been able to keep indoor plants alive. :3
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My coworkers know me well.
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The most important! Birthday book haul. ^.^

 

AAANND, I hit 200 followers! I could just pinch your adorable little cheeks! Thanks for hanging out, talking about books, eating tasty treats, and ranting about anything and everything!

A Closed and Common Orbit – Book Review

4 out of 5 stars

This was a masterful study of artificial intelligence and for that reason alone it was beguiling.

If you noticed that it took me a little longer than usual to finish, it is not the book’s fault. Life has been hectic and that is the only reason I didn’t sit down and devour it in one go.

Here we follow Lovey after she has made the transition into a body kit and scrubbed her previous memories clean. Now Sidra, she finds discovering her new purpose difficult. Adapting to other cultures, lacking the ability to lie about ones origins, and trying to find a way to connect with her new body has been a bit of chaos for someone used to being in total control.

At the same time, we explore Pepper’s peppered past. (Yeah, I went there.) Raised by an AI on an unfair planet, she struggled to rebuild a broken ship and get herself far away from a dying planet who had been nothing but unkind to her.

The two stories intertwine and dance apart across the novel and blend back together in a wholly satisfying ending.

I look forward to many more space operas to come from Becky Chambers. (Secretly, or not so secretly, hoping to see into the past and present of other characters from the Wayfarer in future editions to the story.)

Life in Light of Death – Book Review

2 out of 5 stars

We deny the need to look at death honestly, and we even deny that we are denying death.”

Turning 30? Read a book designed to make you more comfortable with dying!

The first half of this book contains very valid points that really do make you take another look at dying. For example, let’s pretend you gain immortality, then the planet dies. Let’s pretend science becomes advanced enough that you can just move planets, but now the sun is dying. Move to another galaxy (if feasible), but eventually the Milky Way galaxy and Andromeda are going to collide. You can try to keep running but eventually death will claim you one way or another.

Then, about half way through the book, the author decides to attempt to explain away ethical vegetarianism. I was immediately skeptical of why this was even brought up, and it turns out I was right to be. In a nutshell, in his reasoning, animals don’t experience existential dread and what is more cruel, a bullet in the head (quick death) or nature’s way of starvation, injury or old age? Here’s a short list of why these points are fucking stupid:

1. Science has not proven, in any shape or form, that animals do NOT experience existential dread.

2. He clearly doesn’t understand factory farming because the animals are not simply put out of their misery with a quick bullet to the skull.

3. He doesn’t know anything about hunting either because you don’t shoot animals in the skull.

The point of ethical vegetarianism is to not cause unwarranted suffering to animals for the purpose of one’s food. Even this isn’t 100% ethical because anything to do with the dairy industry produces suffering and death. Nay, the only people who can truly claim to be innocent of causing any animal suffering and death are vegans.

But I digress, because I still don’t understand why the author bothered to bring this up except maybe perhaps to try to make himself feel better about not understanding vegetarianism/veganism whatsoever, despite his attempt at being both.

The last half of the book is redundant. He essentially goes, YOLO, YOLO, YOLO, YOLO, YOLO, YOLO. (You may only live once but you can repeat the same shit until the end of the book.)

Dirty Thirty

Absence makes the heart grow fonder, no? Between the holiday and putting an offer in on a house, I’ve been severely lacking in the blog and reading departments. Hopefully, that will change soon but this past week has just had too much excitement to sit down on the internet.

I turn 30 today! My husband is already complaining about the smell of moth balls and icy hot and handing me coffee mugs with ‘OLD’ written on them. I expect a full week before the old jokes die down.

My birthday present to myself? Buying a house. We found THE house. The offer has been accepted and now we enter the closing process. It’s a double learning experience because we are buying directly from the seller and have to do all the work ourselves. Thankfully I have an awesome bank (and an aunt who’s a lawyer) to guide us through the process. Once all the major hurdles have been crossed, I’ll post pics of the adorable new dwelling of the infamous Cupcakes and Machetes.

As for the rest of the day…

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Finding Me – Book Review

Finding Me: A decade of darkness, a life reclaimed – A memoir of the Cleveland kidnappings.

4 out of 5 stars

The struggle to rate this is real. How do you rate someone’s torture? How do you rate their suffering? How do you rate a monstrous human experience? This is every person’s worst nightmare. Held captive and used as a sex object. Beaten and starved. Not for days, not for weeks, not for months but for eleven goddamn years.

I will settle with four stars for this reasoning: I reserve five stars for my favorite books. At no point ever will this be a favorite book, because I cannot favor these disgusting acts even in the face of this woman’s incredible strength and courage. She deserves all the stars for surviving, enduring what she did and holding her head up high and refusing to let it define her.

I think most people heard about this story when it broke, but here you hear the worst of the worst of the details. It’s dark, it’s horrifying, it legitimately gave me nightmares. Yet it is awe inspiring what this woman endured, survived and is now conquering. I consider myself a strong person but I don’t know that I could have made it through 11 years of that hell, and if I did, I don’t know that I would have had the positive outlook on life that she does.

From victim to warrior for the forgotten and abandoned, the abused and broken, Michelle Knight is one hell of a fighter and for that alone, you should read this book.

 

Royal Assassin – Book Review

5 out of 5 stars 

The Farseer Trilogy Book 2 – No Spoilers

I read the first book in this series almost exactly three years ago, before I began reviewing books. I was surprised at how much of it I remembered but not enough to go back and do an actual review. So I will tell you that Hobb roped me in hook, line and sinker. Her writing has a subtle poetry to it. In the first book, the beginning of each chapter feeds you a little of the history of the world you are entering. I found it a clever and enjoyable way to learn the world building.

She continues this in the second book, but the beginning of each chapter explains instead the politics behind the royalty and sometimes background stories of other characters.

I am confident in saying that, if you enjoyed the Song of Ice and Fire series, you will enjoy this as well. Hobb has a way of making small details, rich. If one of the things that you put off of GRRM’s work is the multitude of characters each chapter switches it to, here, you follow only the view of Fitz. This does not make any of the other characters any less important.
Continue reading Royal Assassin – Book Review

Adulting 102

I wish I could say that the weekends are for relaxing, but they really aren’t anymore. If there isn’t house hunting happening, then I’m packing stuff up and trashing anything not worthy of moving. Add to that, that I’ll be going back to overtime every other week and shit is only going to get more hectic. It’s really not a bad thing since we had a cold, rainy winter and cabin fever has struck me hard in the last few weeks. So this isn’t whining, just stress relief.

I’m thinking of revamping the blog here soon. Problem is that I’m not all that savvy with customizing themes/layouts/widgets. If the appearance of this blog is random and makes zero sense, it’s just me learning my way about. Hopefully the final product will be legit.

My husband is finally going to contribute to his own section of the blog. But I’ll leave that final announcement for when he finally completes his first post. If you think I’m an awesome procrastinator, you ain’t seen nothin’ yet. He takes it to the next level. Let’s just say, we’ve been talking about him doing this since I re-opened this blog about 8+ months ago.

Does not matter what is happening in life, these guys have no problem relaxing at a moments notice.

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