Tuesday, January 31, 2012

Trying to Read First, then See the Movie

As I stated in my last post, I'd read "One for the Money" before seeing the just-released film based on this book.  I just began reading the "Hunger Games" books, beginning the first one last night.  I got the books for Christmas and have been wanting to read this series for some time now.  Last weekend at the cinema during "One for the Money" was a preview for  the upcoming film based on the first book.

I've been guilty too often of not reading the book before seeing the movie.   In some cases, I was not aware of the book, and just went to the movie.  I kind of got out of reading mode until a few years ago, and now I find myself wanting to read a book once I hear about the upcoming movie based on the book.  I actually heard about the "Hunger Games" books first after overhearing two others customer at Target one day. I asked them about this series and they said it was good.  Then sometime later, I learned via Twitter, about the upcoming movie.  In 2008, I saw the trailer for "Marley and Me," and knew I wanted to see it.  I did not get around to seeing it in the theater, and then I learned about the book, and found it for sale at work.   The movie had already been in my Netflix queue for sometime when I began reading the book, and I got the DVD more than month later.   The first "Twilight" film adaption had already come out before I began reading the series,  and I did not watch it until I'd finished the books.

A few times recently, I  saw a movie without reading the book, but in each case it was because I did not have time and I had not planned seeing the movie on my own.   During a recent visit from some relatives, we decided to go to movie and they wanted to see "Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close."   This was the only movie they were interested in seeing and so as not to feel left out, I went along.   And  at the end of last year, one of my meetup.com  groups had planned on going to see "New Year's Eve" one night, only to find it wasn't playing until after 10PM that night.  Some of us had met earlier at a restaurant, and did not wait until then to go to the movies until then.  They then looked to see what was playing at 7PM, and decided on seeing "The Descendants."   Not wanting to go home early, I went to this one as well.  I had not planned on seeing either of these, at least not right away.

But at least I will have finished "Hunger Games" before seeing the film, which comes out at the end of March.   And I plan to read the next two books right afterward.

I know that wanting to read a book because of an upcoming movie adaptation is kind of a weird reason, but with so many books being adapted as motion pictures, is the only thing that will encourage reading them?  And why must books covers be revised with actors from the film just before its released, such as these?

More posts on books to movie will follow.  

Saturday, January 28, 2012

Reading the "Stephanie Plum" Books

Today I saw "One for the Money."  I'd read the book just a while ago, and am in the process of reading the entire "Stephanie Plum" series of books.  I've  been borrowing most of them from the library, except for one that did not have as a printed book.  I found a used copy for 50 cents at a thrift store of that particular one.  Another of the book was also not available as a print book, but as an audiobook (as was the above-mentioned book).  I'd never listened to an audiobook, and since this seemed to be the only option I had to read this one book without buying it, I got the audiobook.  It was only three discs and I was able to listen to it all on one Sunday afternoon.  I saw that several of these books are available in audio format at my town's library so I may check out some of the other that way, if I feel I have the patience and time to listen to one again.

Yesterday I finished the eighth book and went to find the next book in the sequence.  Along with 18 (to date) numbered novels, the character is also featured in four holiday-themed novellas, the first of which, "Visions of Sugar Plums," was published after the eighth book, "Hard Eight."   Unfortunately, the library did not have copy for "Sugar Plums," so I asked them if they could do an interlibrary loan.  Since this process can take up to two weeks, I'm trying to decide if want to take a break and read some other stuff I'd been planning to read, such as the "Hunger Games" books, which I have been planning to read for some time now. I got these for Christmas and want to read them before the movie comes out in March.  Oddly enough a trailer for the "Hunger Games" movie was shown before "One for the Money,"  and a "Hunger Games" poster was hanging in the theater lobby.  I've been trying lately to read the book first, but don't always get to do.  There were a few recent movies I saw that were based on a book I haven't read and a while a go I read some books I can see being made into films. But enough about for now (I plan to write about that in another blogpost).

Since I don't know if and when they will get the book at the library, I'm hesitant to start another series of books just now in case they get the book from another library in less than two weeks.  I have all the "Hunger Games" books and want to be able to read them all right after the other.  Same with the books "Shoe Addicts Anonymous" and its sequel "Secrets of a Shoe Addict." I already have these two as well.  I will be hard to give up either of these so quickly if  the "Sugar Plums" book comes to the library in less than two weeks, since I will have have it for three weeks.  But I will decide what  to do.

The Stephanie Plum books in order are (from this link):

Friday, January 27, 2012

Quiz: What Office Supply Are You?

You Are a Red Pen

You have an eagle eye for detail, and this often means you end up finding mistakes in people's work.
You may seem quick to criticize or correct, but you think accuracy and truth is important.

You like to be involved in every project. You feel like you put the polishing touch on things.
You would make a good editor, detective, or accountant. When facts matter, you're the person to call on.

Thursday, January 26, 2012

Quiz: What Donut Are You?

You Are a Boston Creme Donut

You have a tough exterior. No one wants to mess with you.
But on the inside, you're a total pushover and completely soft.
You're a traditionalist, and you don't change easily.
You're likely to eat the same doughnut every morning, and you pout if it's sold out.

Funny thing is that I've never had one of these donuts. I always eat ones with holes, if I ever eat any at all. which isn't very often.  When I do eat any donuts, I like the ones with sprinkled with sugar o glazed, or sometimes those with colored sprinkles.

Friday, January 20, 2012

Lane Bryant for Bra Shopping

The Lane Bryant store in Gilroy, California.  I shot this
from the parking lot while sitting in my car.

Something I've been hesitant to write about on my blog.  I often dread clothes shopping because it can take up to hours to find things that fit.  I especially dread having to buy new bras, something I'd been putting off for months but finally got around to this past Monday.

I don't want to get into too much detail, but even though I'm not plus sized, I need larger size bras (TMI?) And that rules out several shopping options.  No Victoria's Secret.  I never understood why they are so popular when they only cater to smaller sizes. And just going downtown to Kmart or Target either isn't an option either.  So I decided to try at some store that carries plus-size women's clothing, even though I won't be able to wear the outer clothes, just possibly the intimates.  I already knew about the Lane Bryant store in the town where I work.  I saw on their website that he "buy two, get two free" bra sale was on. However, it ended this Monday, so a trip to LB after work that day was in order.

My shopping bag from LB, at home.
So when I entered the store,  I asked the sales lady for a sizing (again, I'm not going into any detail here) and then she showed me what was available.  As I'd suspected, I was in the store for nearly two hours.  But it wasn't because nothing fit or that I didn't find anything I liked.  Neither of those were true. I found many that fit and that I liked (well some I didn't like, and decided against).  But I found quite a few I did like, so deciding which four to buy was difficult.  But eventually I made my decision and headed to the register to check out.  Everything went well, and I saved over $70 dollars (along with the sale,  I got 25% for spending over $50).  I was satisfied with my purchase.  Surprisingly, I did not get asked to apply for their credit card, which I would  have said no to.  But they did ask if I wished to receive email coupons, and I said yes to that.  It's just email.  I do plan to go to LB when I next need new intimates.

I'd also planned to go Barnes and Noble (next to LB) that day to use the gift card I got for Christmas and it use an email coupon I'd gotten (it expired that day). I just barely made it into the bookstore to find something I'd been waiting to get, as I was exhausted from my Lane Bryant trip.  I didn't make it to get a soda at Bevmo however, even though I was thirsty.  And no looking at the Salvation Army. Two hours in one store is bound to make me too exhausted to look anywhere else when I have to be up early the following morning.  It was nearly three when I got home.

I just signed onto Yelp and wrote a  review for Lane Bryant in Gilroy, CA, the first person to review the store.   My reviews page is here.

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Quiz: The Orchid Test

You Are Balanced and Wise

You are a big fan of all things in moderation. You avoid extremes.
You are a colorful and fun person, but you always make sure not to go too wild.

You are bold and carefree, but you also have a more sensitive side to you.
You are more fragile than you look. You may be outgoing and outrageous, but you're just as breakable as everyone else.

Friday, January 13, 2012

Friday the 13th

Yes, that's today's date.  I'm not superstitious, and nothing bad has ever happened to me on one of these dates.  But just for the record, there  are two more such dates this year, in April and July.  This is a leap year that began on a Sunday and will end on Monday (a non-leap year begins and end on the same day of the week).  This leap year last occurred in 1984.  The last common year with three Friday the 13ths was 2009, and the next such year will be 2015.

Again, I'm not superstitious, but as always be careful tonight, whatever you're doing!

Thursday, January 12, 2012

No More Twinkies (and Other Hostess Snacks)?

You may have heard by now that Hostess Brands, maker of Twinkies, Sno-Balls, Zingers, and Wonder Bread, among other snacks, has filed for Chapter 11 Bankruptcy this week.  

This was a hot topic on Twitter yesterday, and I was among those tweeting and re-tweeting about Twinkies.   One person wondered what county fairs will do without their deep-fried Twinkies.  I've  never tried these, as they seem a bit awful, but now wonder about those who do like deep-fried Twinkies, and how they will miss these.  Come to think of it, it's been years since I've gone to our county fair, but that's another story altogether.

Another thing that came up on Twitter about Twinkies was someone saying "I can't imagine a generation not knowing what a Twinkie is."  Yeah, it's hard to imagine Twinkies becoming another thing that some people have no knowledge of.  Already there are generations of people who don't know about the rotary phone, party lines, and just barely know about the landline phones.  Some who've seen an old vinyl record or 8-track tape and wonder what those were.  Some who've never used a floppy disk. Many who won't know about the capacitance electronic disc or the laser disc. And many other things that have come and gone.  Yes, even food brands come and go, but a Twinkie is one that everyone should be able to enjoy.   Twinkies, along with other the other Hostess snacks are always perfect for breakfast on the run. If there's nothing in the house for breakfast, it's so easy to grab a Twinkie and milk (or coffee if that's your preference) at the minimart while going to get gas on the way to work.  I've done this on occasion, but more often find myself buying the orange cupcakes (seen at right), another Hostess snack that I will be sad to see go.  Sure, Hostess has competition from Little Debbie, but does Little Debbie have a Twinkies knockoff?  If there is, I've never seen it. And do they make an orange cupcake?  Even so, it just won't be the same.

After hearing about the bankruptcy filing yesterday, it occurred to me that I have not had any of these snacks in some time, no idea just how long.  I then wanted to have some so I decided I get some the next time I was at the store.  Today I went to target just two browse, but decided I could get some of these snacks there. And I ddid, buying a package of the Chocolate Cupcakes and the Twinkies.  No orange cupcakes were in sight,and I have never cared much for many of the other Hostess snacks (although I have tried the Ho-Hos on occasion), so these were two I bought.  I had some for snacks this afternoon and may just have some for breakfast tomorrow.  Many people yesterday on Twitter were joking about stockpiling Twinkies, another thing that prompted me to buy some today.  I wouldn't necessarily call it stockpiling, though.

I just cannot imagine these snacks not existing anymore.  But I wanted to enjoy them for one the last, if not THE last, times, should they indeed no longer exist.  But I am one of these who prays that that will not be true.

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Feels Like Spring

And it's midway through the second week of January.  My birthday is tomorrow [please don't ask :)].  Yet the weather in this part of the country feels like spring.  It's California, after all, and those who live there know there's no such thing as snow, except in the mountains.  But even the mountains seem to be lacking in snow.  Not that that matters to me, since I'm not a skier, but I could not help noticing this article in the San Francisco Chronicle last week.   It sure doesn't feel like winter here.

I kind of like this warm weather, but keep putting on my jacket by force of habit.  It just seems mandatory to have a jacket on at this time of year.  Yet sometimes it's just a bit hot to have my jacket on, especially in the car.  I also find myself removing my jacket while at the store.  Weather last fall was a bit uncharacteristic of the season as well, in the 70s and 80s, something that seemed largely absent last summer.  I'm now beginning to wonder who this summer's and fall's weather will be in my neck of the woods.

It's kind of good to not have to face rain for a while, even though we've suffered a drought for some time now.  Last spring it was raining a lot, now wondering if that will be so this year.  The weather has been in the 60s and more of the same is expected later this week.

I'm off work all this week for my birthday, by the way, and haven't done much as of yet.

Even in the warm weather, I don't feel compelled to visit the coastal areas.  It my just be a little too cold to even go near the ocean.  And no breaking out the shorts and sandals either.  Totally not characteristic  of this time of year, even with spring-like weather.  Even with  sunny days, it still gets a little cold, it is winter, after all, even though it doesn't look like it for many of us in this part of the country.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

What I Read in 2011

Over the last year or two, I got more into reading that I had been in previous years.  And just now after a Google search,  I  came across postings on other blogs of what the blogger read last year, so I decided to do one of my own.  I 'd like to share what I read and perhaps give someone some ideas if they ned something to read this year.

Note: these aren't in chronological order of when I read them, and I'm remembering what I read as best as I can. I still read physical books and am debating if I want to get an e-reader.  I still check books out of the library, so I can save some money.  And I look for books at thrift stores, meaning I can buy them for between 50 cents and $2.  Also note, I won't be doing a review for each (sorry, too lazy for that!), but I don't want to write a super-long blog post.  However, I will provide links to info on each book for possible readers to decide.

Lady Luck's Map of Vegas by Barbara Samuel
Homer's Odyssey  by Gwen Cooper
Cleo: A Cat Who Mended a Family by Helen Brown
Goodnight Tweetheart by Teresa Medeiros
The Host by Stephenie Meyer
The Help by Kathryn Stockett
I don't Know How She Does It by Allison Pearson
Thin, Rich, Pretty By Beth Harbison
Summer Rental by Mary Kay Andrews

The following books by Emily Giffin:  Something Borrowed, Something Blue, Baby Proof,  and The Heart of the Matter.  I'm hoping to read Love the One You're With.  She's becoming a must-read author of mine.

The following books by Sophie Kinsella:  Remember Me?, The Undomestic Goddess, and the remainder of the "Shopaholic" books (I'd read the first one of these in 2010 before getting the movie from Netflix).  She's another author I want to read more of, including the books she wrote under her real name Madeline Wickham (I've never read any of those).

I also began reading The Vampire Diaries series, all the way up to the first book in the Hunters trilogy, as well as the first four books in the Stefan's Diaries series.  And I also read another L.J. Smith series, Night World. 

I tend to like series, even though they can be hard to keep up with.  I read the first book in Lauren Conrad's L.A. Candy series (got this one at he library), but haven't gotten the rest yet.  I also got a used copy of Beth Harbison's Shoe Addicts Anonymous at Goodwill. I haven't read it yet, and will want to read its followup, Secrets of a Shoe Addict.

This is what I recall from last year.  I got the Hunger Games books for  Christmas and will soon be reading those.  Today I went to the library to get the first three books (in one volume)  in Janet Evanovich's "Stephanie Plum" series.  I'm now halfway through the first book.

Sunday, January 1, 2012

New Year

Well, it's 2012 now.  I hated that I did not write a final post for 2011.  I've always written a post on the last day of the year since I began the blog. But between taking down the Christmas decorations, doing laundry, going to see "New Year's Eve" yesterday (on the day itself), and going to a New Year's Eve celebration at a local bar, there just wasn't time to write an official end-of-year blog post.  Even with only two days of work last week (because of inventory this Tuesday),  I slacked a bit on blog posts.  So what follows is a brief of Christmas week.

To recap Christmas: The present I ended up getting in our family Christmas present game was a car-cleaning supplies set from Armor All.   Strange that I really needed stuff to clean my car with and now I have to get around to cleaning it, since it really needs it!   Before the game (and before the cousins began arriving for the night), I got a few presents from Mom; a Barnes and Noble Gift card for $50, and the "Hunger Games" books.  I've wanting to read these since I heard about them and that a feature film based on the first book will be released this March.   On Christmas Day, we went to see "The Adventures of Tintin." 

Last Thursday, I went to my first outing with a group I joined on meetup.com.  We first met at a small restaurant and the went to see "The Descendants."  We'd planned on seeing "New Year's Eve," but found out that it was only playing at 10PM, and we wanted something at 7PM.  And on Friday, my family and I saw  "We Bought a Zoo." 

While I never make resolutions for the New Year,  there are a few things I plan on doing this year and that I hope will change.  I plan on re-lisiting my papier mache Halloween decorations I put up for sale
on Etsy last year.  None of them sold, but I plan on trying again and putting them up for sale was early as July.  And I want to try making other stuff to sale.  And I sure hope I'm not still working in the same place after almost six years.  We'll see what happens this year.