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Good Read(s)

Posted by Wombat Central on December 15, 2016 in audio books, Books, People |

Hey! Are you on Goodreads? Are we friends yet? I also joined another online book-reading app thingy, but that one makes my wee brain feel far less collected than the simplicity I find on Goodreads.

I just had to pop in to dust off these pages and recommend my new favorite book. It’s A Man Called Ove by Fredrik Backman.

a-man-called-ove

 

I surely would have fallen for this Saab-driving curmudgeon in print but listening to the book enhanced the read by leaps and bounds. He knew just when to punch up certain words and add a twinge of disgust to others, giving color and life to the characters. I would put this in my top five favorites list, although, I’m not sure I could be pressed at the moment to recite the other four.

I’m currently reading another book by the same author, but it was pure happenstance. I didn’t purposely select it because the same person wrote it–the title grabbed my attention and the blurb reeled me in. It’s a bit longer then Ove, and does contain some element of fantasy, so it’s a little slower going for me. I’m more of a real life gal vs. fantasy worlds, but there is enough of the real human element in My Grandmother Asked Me to Tell You She’s Sorry to keep me coming back!

Read anything noteworthy lately?

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Throwdown in Aisle 10A

Posted by Wombat Central on November 18, 2016 in Christmas, Shopping |

I’ve never been a Black Friday shopper. For some people it’s as much a part of Thanksgiving as mashed taters and gravy, and they cling to their routine like stink bugs to a screen. They dutifully set their alarms for crazy-o’clock a.m., tank up on caffeine, and charge forth to join the throngs of early bird bargain hunters.

Once or twice I’ve ventured out on Black Friday (during normal humanoid waking hours, mind you) and decided it wasn’t worth the epic lines, close standers, and assorted bodily odors. Thankfully, much of the stampeding takes place during the wee hours of the morning when I’m still sound asleep and happily dreaming of pie.

me-and-pie-on-the-beach

Happy as can be… pie and me!

 

I just don’t see the point of a throwdown in the Star Wars aisle of the toy store because only one BB-8 app-enabled Droid remains on the shelf in a banged up box. All yours, pal.

“Ooh, Ginny, how’d you get that gash on your face?”

“Great story, Jen. I got the last Hatchimal on the shelf on Black Friday. Some broad had it by her big fake nails, but I shot her an elbow to the neck and took her down in a full nelson. Scored big with this baby! Doctor says the infection should clear up in no time!”

“Um… yeah. Sounds great.”

I mean, I used to get in there with the ladies in Filene’s Basement in Boston on my lunch hour, but the rush there was a daily occurrence, and there was no violence or trampling involved. Just some healthy “I got this first” side glances and very mild, but occasional, pressing of elbows. It was all in good fun. And great bargains. Just sucked to try on in the enormous “group fitting area.” Hard to unsee some of that, really.

I’m pretty content with shopping locally as much as possible, and hitting up a few Cyber Monday deals online. What about you–what kind of a shopper are you?

 

 

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Movie Monday – Bridget Jones’s Baby

Posted by Wombat Central on October 4, 2016 in Entertainment, Movies |

Years after I’d seen the first two Bridget movies about her diary, I decided to read the book. Backwards, but still.

LOVED the book.

Loved the movies, too, of course, but the book’s style was just like a daily account in someone’s diary and it was brilliant.

Natch, on the big screen, it had to have more of a flow to it, since they were telling a story with pictures. It also had to have cute men fighting over her like Hugh Grant and the other Mr. Darcy, the ever-charming Colin Firth. Who somehow manages to look fab even in a horrendous Christmas sweater:

colin-firth-christmas-sweater

 

Take that movie, subtract one Hugh Grant, add a pinch of McDreamy, sprinkle with hilarious dialogue and awkward situations, and you’ve got Bridget Jones’s Baby.

I’d seen the previews and figured all the funny parts were revealed, but there were soooo many more. I laughed (loudly) throughout the entire film. I look forward to seeing it again!

So grab a friend, a date, or even just a good snack and ugly sweather, and hit the theatres for this one. Skip the previews for this film if you haven’t seen them. Then it will all be new to you when you see it, and it’ll give you even more to laugh about!

 

 

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What’s Everyone Reading?

Posted by Wombat Central on October 3, 2016 in Books, Comedy, Entertainment, reading |

reading-stay-with-schmoopyThere are so many great authors and books out there–I’m forever adding to my “Want to Read” list on Goodreads! I’m able to knock off a few titles at a time, typically. I nearly always have an audio book in progress as well as a hard copy (or two).

I listen to the audio book while I’m doing mundane tasks around the house and while driving in the car. I can get through books in a pretty timely manner in this format, and so many of the voice talents lend another dimension to the story. Sometimes the author will read the book, and it’s cool to experience the story exactly how they intended it to come across.

As for the hard copies, I do tend to putter along in some of those. I’m not a high-speed reader (never have been). I’m quite deliberate about the whole thing, really. I don’t want to miss a word or nuance anywhere, so I take my time. Some books I don’t want to end, so I allow myself to read little bits of them before bed. The last two I’ve done this with were Jenny Lawson’s books (currently reading Furiously Happy at a snail’s pace so it lasts foreverrrrr). Sometimes I’ll have a book in progress that’s entirely different that I’ll delve into before bed, only to go back to dipping into Jenny’s work again when I’ve finished.

There are others I pick up just when I feel like picking them up. They’re usually books filled with comedic short essays or helpful advice on sorting out the crap in one’s life.

I’m currently in the midst of one of the longest audio books I’ve read in a while. It’s nearly 22 hours long! That’s a lot of errand running, laundry folding, and bathroom cleaning! Thing is, it isn’t even all that captivating, but I persevere. It came highly recommended and got glowing reviews, so I figured it was worth my time. It’s The Signature of All Things by Elizabeth Gilbert. I enjoyed Eat, Pray, Love, because she read the audio book and gave it a personal slant. Yes, I heard the movie sucked, but I know I’ll still get it out of the library one day. This is a departure from that book, as it’s fiction. Jury’s still out until I finish. Which should be sometime in the next calendar year….

That said, I’ve never had an issue with putting down a book that doesn’t grab me. Case in point:  Fates and Furies. Oh my gosh, did I try with that book. Tried it two different times. I think I even tried the audio AND hard copy. Started it then started it over again. Why? My goodness, why were people giving it such high marks? Maybe those people also loved the one I’m trundling through now. I should look into that!

Our book club enjoyed The Girl on the Train, and we’re all eager to see the film adaptation this month. Have you read it? Will you see it? We had read Me Before You and were all a bit disappointed with the movie, though it was fun to see the characters come to life on the big screen.

So, what are you reading now? What’s on the to-read list?

 

 

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Irish is as Irish Does

Posted by Wombat Central on September 30, 2016 in Entertainment, Food |

Oh, hai! I’m back again. I just seem to drift to and fro with this blog, and I’ve lost nearly all my readers at this point, but I’m back again in case you want to throw a bookmark on your computer again. Or for the first time.

Or pretend you never saw this. Whatever works.

I generally come back with something silly to kick out the cobwebs, and since I’m hooked on watching these “Irish People Try” videos, I thought I’d share. Have you seen any of them? This one tickled my fancy in particular, because a couple of my favorite reviewers are on here (love the guy with the shaggy black hair, leather, and beard) and the first food is something I remember seeing for breakfast in The Netherlands.

Enjoy!

 

 

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Looking Left to Right

Posted by Wombat Central on August 23, 2016 in Exercise, Life |

I can actually turn my head again! I’ve been going to PT and doing my exercises in between appointments, and I’m happy to report I can now safely operate a motor vehicle! It’s wonderful to be able to actually check those blind spots instead of doing hail Mary maneuvers on the road.

Before I began treatment, it was excruciating to sit at the computer for more than 2-3 minutes at a time. I’m blerging nao! I’m thrilled to see the differences coming from the physical therapy work.

The first thing I do upon arriving there is lie down with a heated gel pad wrapped around the back and sides of m’neck. It’s like a tea cosy only better. Because it’s super toasty. And totally not knitted by your granny. Sweet Jeebus, it. is. the. best. It’s moist heat, so it’s way better than a heating pad. It’s like a big warm hug. From a really hot and kinda sweaty friend. Yeah. Ew. Strike that. It’s nice. We’ll leave it at that.

Next? Massage time.

Sure, there are some tender spots, but oh boy, most of it feels fabulous.

Sure, there are some tender spots, but oh boy, most of it feels fabulous.

 

They do sometimes beat me up a bit pressing on my spine just below my head as I look both ways to increase mobility, but the more I go, the less uncomfortable this part of the sessions is. They’re also adding weights to the exercises I do there, but I see that as a bonus of building muscle I’ve let go to pot over the years. I typically leave there feeling so much better than when I walked in.

I was seriously a hurting unit when this began! I still have stabby pains when I move the wrong way or turn my head too quickly (and sleeping can still be tricky), but we’re on the right track.

So this is my endorsement for physical therapy. If you have nagging issues you’ve been ignoring (such as, oh, I don’t know–not having full left-side turning mobility of your neck for well over a year), get thee to an expert in PT! STAT!

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