Booberry One Month Later

Look – I’m just going to stop saying anything about my absences because they keep happening and there really isn’t a good excuse. I’m flaky!

It’s almost one month since Icepocalypse 2023 happened, and our insurance adjuster won’t be out to look at the damage until Thursday this week. All the contractors we called to get estimates on repairs, have not called back. It’s been fun.

Anywho, the actual point to this post is as advertised in the title. My sweet little Booberry has been with me a month now and I’m starting to see some color come back. I’ve added more plants to his aquarium along with a few bottom feeder friends. (Might be getting some floating plants this week.) For tank mates, I decided on panda corydoras. They’re super cute. Luckily, when they were introduced, Booberry checked them out and then did not care one bit about their presence. I’ve watched one swim right into him and he’s just too chill to care. There are three of them so Mr. C&M decided they should be called Lock, Shock and Barrel from Nightmare Before Christmas. I agreed wholeheartedly.

Thanks to this first betta rescue, I’ve become obsessed with both bettas and aquariums again. I’ve really enjoyed learning about aquascaping, and all the plants that come along with it. I haven’t read a book in about a month because my nose is constantly in my iPad watching YouTube videos and researching any questions I have.

Which, leads me to the latest development…

Meet my latest rescue! *Insert hysterical laughter here*

This little guy is barely old enough to be sold. He’s very skinny because the pellets they’re trying to feed him don’t even fit in his tiny mouth. He has pretty much starved with food right in front on him. I just got him yesterday and I didn’t think he was going to make it. He pulled through the night and perked up a bit. No name until it seems like he’s going to be okay. I haven’t decided whether I will keep him or adopt him out. Time will tell.

If I’m absent again, just know that I’m somewhere, doing fish related stuff like setting up a hospital tank and planning future tanks. :3

Give me your best aquarium tips if you’ve got ’em!

Icepocalypse 2023

Usually when I just up and disappear, it’s my fault. This recent vanishing was thanks to Mother Nature.

Wednesday, February 22, we had just finished eating and the power went out. We didn’t really expect it to be out long because it never is. But oh, the things that were in store for us. We spent the night listening to ice and tree branches fall on our house. It continued into the next morning. There is a decent amount of damage and Ridley almost got taken out trying to pee the next morning. Our power was off for 4.5 days.

The real heroes of the hour were Mr. and Mrs. Moth. They took us and the dogs in for 3.5 days. Kept us warm, fed and entertained while we had to pay a clean-up crew $2500 in work. There will never be enough thank yous for that. ❤

Now, it’s a waiting game to get insurance to make good on their end of the contract. So, if I’m distracted for awhile, I’m sorry. I will be back soon.

Death’s Acre – Book Review

Publishing Date: October 27, 2003

Publishing Co.: Berkley

Pages: 320

Rating: 5 out of 5 stars

I vividly remember when all the CSI shows hit the scene. They were practically the only thing anyone was watching and everyone had their favorite city. People were absolutely fascinated by the science behind solving crimes. (Plenty still are, I think a few of those shows are still around.) So, I shouldn’t be surprised that this book was originally published in that same time frame. If people really wanted to learn about forensics, books can teach even more than television.

Narrowing down the very broad scope of forensics, Dr. Bill Bass is an anthropologist. He studies the bones and gleans the truth as best he can with what is left behind. Unidentified bodies are given race, sex and a rough age estimate. This can help in missing people cases and also in murder cases. Dr. Bass was consistently busy assisting police, doing research and teaching students.

But, as any good scientist, the more he learned the more questions he produced. Forensics is a fairly new science so there are certain things that just had not been studied yet. Like, how EXACTLY does a human corpse decompose? How long does it take depending on weather conditions? Do insects increase the decay rate? How can the surrounding environment help time stamp a victim’s death?

The only good way to answer these questions is to examine decaying human remains. And thus, the Body Farm was created. (It has a technical name, but Body Farm is cooler.) Using donated cadavers, Bass and his students began creating scenarios and studying the results. From those studies, sprung other studies developed by his students and forensics was pushed even further.

This is 50 percent about the Body Farm and how it came to be, and 50 percent an autobiography of Dr. Bass. My only minor complaint was the constant reminder of how the science worked, sometimes not very far apart. It did nothing to dampen my appreciation of this book. You definitely need a morbid curiosity for this one, which luckily, I have an abundance of.

Operation: Fish Rescue

One might think, can you rescue a fish? And the answer is, yes. From poor care by either people or the corporations that sell them. Now, it’s not actually something I had even thought about until IG showed me videos of a couple of ladies and their quests to revive sick fish/eels.

It also happens that stores tend to take very poor care of one of my very favorite fish. Bettas.

I’ve had many bettas in my life. I bought and kept countless ones when I was younger. My last one was in 2011. I was an adult at that point and took better care of things, so he lived for a few years if I remember correctly.

Not long after this realization, I found myself at a grocery store that just so happens to sell fish and what do you know? They were taking poor care of their bettas. Not all were sick but there were a few, unhealthy fellows. Convincing the cashier to give him to me for free took no effort. She promptly said, “YUCK!” and gave him to me. So that’s how I ended up with this guy:

As you can see, his color is bleached from all of his fins and head. Luckily, I don’t think he has fin rot but he was on his way. I don’t have fish, so I had to go out and buy all this stuff to essentially use as a hospital tank to nurse him back to health.

This has led me down the rabbit hole that is proper betta care. Little me would have had her mind blown at what crappy lives she was giving her bettas. (Although still better than in the stores.) It will probably take him about a month or so to heal. So, now the plan is to get a 5-gallon tank and try my hand at live plants, something I’ve never done. Should this little guy live, he’ll have a cool new home and a much more entertaining life. No name until he makes it. (Plus, I’m kind of married to naming him Booberry but I have a feeling he’s going to have a lot of teal and green once he’s healed. Not a color match to Booberry cereal.)

Long story short, welcome to my new obsession. Bettas and aquariums, as now I’m half tempted to just continue to rescuing bettas. Hard part would be finding them all homes though.

What’s your favorite fish??

First Book Haul of 2023

Even when money is tight, sometimes you just gotta treat yo self.

As a mood reader, the one thing I did not have in my collection to quench a thirst if it popped up, was any non-fiction. I’ve always liked learning and even though I’m in school currently, my brain still wants more.

This is my second ever order from Their prices are pretty incredible. I bought 7 books for $38. (That tops what I spend in all of 2022 on books but who cares?! Books!)

The tantalizing box!

True crime, non-fiction, mystery, dogs. The range is good with this lot. I’ve already started Death’s Acre so expect a review of that in the near future.

What treasures did you get in your latest book haul??

Blackbirds (Miriam Black, #1) – Book Review

Published Date: April 22, 2012

Publishing Co.: Angry Robot

Pages: 381

Rating: 3 out of 5 stars

If you touch Miriam Black, skin to skin, for even a second, she can see your death. The exact year, day, hour and manner of how you die. Just the one vision, one time, but she never forgets. Miriam doesn’t try to change fate. She tried that once upon a time and it doesn’t work. She hangs around like a vulture, waiting for you to die. Then, she takes the earthly things you don’t need any longer; money, credit cards, etc. She crowns herself a scavenger and she accepts her lot in life.

Until she foresees a death that is a direct result from the person knowing her. Finally, something shakes her from her complacency. She doesn’t like the idea of someone dying because they know her, but she can’t change fate, right?

Miriam isn’t a very likable character. I can enjoy a good anti-hero, but she just doesn’t have very many redeeming qualities, at least until the end. The actual villains were quite good. Creepy, intimidating. Running from them made sense.

There were a few very Stephen King elements to this book. I should have written them down when I thought of it, but I was too confident in my memory. I do remember that it was so glaringly similar that it almost felt like a complete duplication.

Currently, I am undecided whether I will continue this series.

Winter Has Come

It’s been a weird winter here in Michigan. We’ve received hardly any snow, mostly cold rain and gray, gray days. This past Wednesday we were hit with a pretty good storm, and it finally feels like a real Michigan winter. At the very least, the snow is pretty, and it makes the house feel cozier.

I’ve been hunkered down with lots of schoolwork as of late. I do have a book haul on the horizon, a book review and a possible comic review as well. Until then, I try to check in every couple of days when I have extra time. So, for now, I leave you with cute dogs in winter pictures.

2023 Bookish Resolutions

Before I make any reading resolutions for the new year, let’s see how I did in 2022:

  1. Continue/complete series: I created a master list for this goal and only read 1 book series from the list. I did continue/complete 4 series that were not on the master list. I would consider this a semi-successful goal. Some progress is better than no progress.
  2. No spending limit on books: Despite giving myself free reign to spend as much as I want on books, I spent $19.67.
  3. Mood read for the entire year. I can check this one off with 100% confidence!

2023 Resolutions:

  1. Continue/complete series. I’m going to copy the master list into the new year and give it another run. It’s nice having a focus point, even if I don’t necessarily stick to it very well.
  2. No spending limit again! It’s interesting when I give myself no limits and then I’m still frugal as hell.
  3. Read more comic books. I really neglected comics in 2022 (I read none) and want to change that in 2023.

Do have any bookish resolutions for the new year??

Welcome, 2023!

Well, I just kind of disappeared there, didn’t I?

The holidays started to kick into full gear, and I just rode that crazy tidal wave into 2023. Sorry for the total absence but it did me some good to step away for a bit.

Ridley loved his first Christmas! To be honest, that is the thing that I cared about the most this year. The poor boy has known nothing but torture before 6 months ago and I intend to spoil him absolutely rotten for the rest of his life. He was showered in toys and treats and now he really wishes Christmas was every week.

On the 30th, Melanie and her husband Nick came to town to engage in various shenanigans. She got to meet Moth in person for the first time and the boys all met each other. They ran off without us immediately to try some craft beers. We ate good food, bowled terribly (except Nick), and laughed a LOT. It was great time and I’m so thankful to count Melanie and Nick in our friend circle. ❤

On NYE, we hung out with Mr. and Mrs. Moth and their fur child (and BFF to Ridley) Noi. It was a very chill evening, just the way we like to ring in the new year. The fur children wrestled endlessly but we also forced them to wear pajamas for pictures. I would like to think we embarrassed them, but they seemed to enjoy themselves.

I for one, am ready for a new year. 2022 sucked for our household and I have hope that things turn around in 2023. I’m not sure whether or not I’m even going to try for any resolutions this go around. I might to see where the wind takes us.

How as your New Year’s Eve? What was your favorite part?

Rogue Protocol (Murderbot Diaries #3) – Book Review

Published Date: August 7, 2018

Publishing Co.:

Pages: 150

Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

I’m just zipping through this little robot space opera, and I am doing so happily.

Another planet, more dumb humans almost getting themselves killed and a robot still questing for answers.

Murderbot is onto its next clue in bringing down GrayCris. The organization that tried to kill their first group of humans in order to hide their illegal activity, harvesting ancient alien remains. Murderbot wants to find as much evidence as possible to send back to the first human that recognized and respected their free will (I don’t remember their name) so that they can win their legal case and be safe from a dangerous organization.

It’s never as easy as Murderbot hopes.