Tuesday, January 31, 2012

January 2012 Book Recap

What I read and started in January 2012

Books read to date: 2/40

Crescendo (Hush, Hush, #2) by Becca Fitzpatrick (review here)
Lover Avenged (Black Dagger Brotherhood, #7) by JR Ward (review here)

The Power of a Praying Wife by Stormie Omartian
(This will be on here for the next 30 weeks)
Lover Mine (Black Dagger Brotherhood, #8) by JR Ward
(Might be taking a break from this one)
Shiver (The Wolves of Mercy Falls, #1) by Maggie Stiefvater

Monthly savings: $29.98
Year-to-date savings: $29.98


Bible Study: Week 2 - His Work

Julie and I met Thursday night on Skype again. I look forward to meeting with her every week! It's in my calendar and Frenchie is fully aware I'm busy for an hour chatting.

We were able to relate more to chapter 2 than chapter 1. Now we are getting into parts of the book that we can relate to. Praying for our husband to have good things happen to him, changes for the better, lessons and guidance from God is definitely what we were looking for. We are both in agreement that the rest of the book is going to be just what we wanted.

This chapter is perfect for where Frenchie's life is right now. He likes his job, but isn't fulfilled. He's successful, but has more potential. He wants a change, and has started looking for it. These are all things I pray for. Having a chapter on this specific situation was ideal. I have more pointed prayers, more guidance on what to pray to God for. Better ways to pray for the same thing. Sometimes it takes a mind shift to ask the same question.

Next week is on Finances. Going into this week, I know that Frenchie has a good grasp on finance, so we will see what God leads me to pray about.


Home Business - Epicure Selections

I am starting a home-based business! I have signed up to be an Independent Epicure Consultant. It's very excited news! I get to sell amazing spices, dressings and now cookware, out of my own home and on my own schedule.
A little about the company:
Epicure is a 100% Canadian, 100% family-owned, woman-led company.
The products are made with the highest quality ingredients and are known for being low sodium, low sugar and no MSG added. Cooking is now easier and healthier!
They have a wonderful website with a catalogue you can go through: www.epicureselections.com

Here's the personal side:
The idea behind this is that I can start now, build a base of clients while I'm still working full time and then when we start our family, I have an established work-at-home-mom business. Of course this is all speculation right now with a lot of ifs/whens in the air. Other than the long term goal, it will satisify a short term goal to keep myself busy, and make some extra money to pay for vacations and renovations (and books)

I can't tell you how excited I am to start booking parties, taking orders and building up my own supply. Did you know you can order online and specify me as your consultant?
After meeting with my sponsor last night and trying a few of her favorite dishes she brings to tasting parties, I am even more thrilled. I've told Frenchie that we are going to become very healthy snackers and our meals will gain a whole new level of flavour.

Please check out my Facebook page - Epicure Selections by Laurel Berube (Link in sidebar)
Find me on Twitter!

Saturday, January 28, 2012

2/40: Lover Avenged by JR Ward

Lover Avenged (Black Dagger Brotherhood, #7) Lover Avenged (Black Dagger Brotherhood, #7) by J.R. Ward
My rating: 2 of 5 stars

I have to say I did not fall in love with Rhevenge like I did the other brothers.
I think part of the problem I had with this book was that the plot about Rhev didn't do enough to warrant a full book and the sub-plots were distracting. I almost would have preferred the book be about Wrath and John and Rhev as the side story.

A lot of my friends loved this book and thought it was the best one in the series. I just couldn't get there. It took me forever to read. Far longer than the others. I guess I just didn't feel the heat and love between Rhev and Elhena like I did the rest of the characters. There was something missing.
My fear is that the remainder of this series is going downhill like the Sookie books did for me. I hope they don't because I love the rest of the characters in the book.

I was going to take a break from reading next two for a while, but I didn't have another book with me other than Lover Mine the day I finished this one. I've started it, but I think I still might put it down for a bit. Come back when I am ready to dive in.
View all my reviews


Thursday, January 26, 2012

1/40: Crescendo by Becca Fitzpatrick

Crescendo (Hush, Hush, #2)Crescendo by Becca Fitzpatrick
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

This book took me longer to read than the first one. That means a few things. I enjoyed it, but not as much, and I likely won't read the next one.
I love Nora and Patch in the first book and I just didn't feel attached to them in this one. It seemed to be all over the place, going in a bunch of different directions. Part of that is to throw you off so you don't see the ending coming, which was well done, but I didn't feel the suspense like I did in Hush Hush.

I went back and read my review of Hush Hush to see why the second book was on my shelf. I had got it as a Christmas gift because I wouldn't stop gushing about the first book. The thing I loved about book 1 was Patch. He sucked me in and even though he's the "bad boy" I fell just like Nora did.
Crescendo made me not like him and that sort of ruined it for me.
View all my reviews


Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Bible Study Time!

I’ve wanted to do a Bible study for a long time and never found a time/place to do it right here in my own city. The church I love only has them during the day. For someone with a full time job, that’s not really going to work. There is none at night and I’ve tried to start one with friends, but it never works out. I blogged about my New Year’s plans to maybe do one someday and a fellow blogger, Julie asked if I’d do one with her. Since we live in different countries we “meet” through Skype once a week.
Took us a day to figure out which book we wanted to order. There are so many out there! Julie and I have chosen to do The Power of a Praying Wife by Stormie Omartian. We are both newlyweds (her longer than I) and decided to do this one because it sounded like us. We pray for our families, friends and husbands, so why not do a bible study that will assist us.

First impressions: THIS IS NOT THE BOOK FOR ME!

I started reading chapter 1 and wondered what I had gotten myself into. Chapter 1 is all about being on the verge of separation from your husband and that maybe praying will help avoid a divorce. Uh.. Julie!! What the heck are we reading? No where in any description did it say anything about this book helping you avoid divorce. I LOVE my husband. We JUST got married. I’m not so sure this is the book for me. Julie said the same thing and figured we’d give it a couple chapters before punting this book and picking up something else.

Our first discussion went well despite the depressing material. There was a lot of questions we both said "no" to which is ok in my books. I'm sure our answers were probably light compared to what the author was intending her book to be for. Being it was our first time “meeting” each other than email/twitter/gchat we spent a lot of time just talking and getting to know each other better. We did manage to talk about the bible study a little bit and both said we’re excited to keep going and hoping it gets less “your marriage is ending, read this to ask God to help you”

We are meeting this week to talk about Week 2/Chapter 2: His Work. I have gone through the chapter in the book, but haven’t gotten to the questions yet. The book did make a drastic improvement from the first chapter. Very little divorce chatter and more focus on your husband, which is what we were going for in the first place. This week talks all about his work. His = husband, not His = God. When I told Frenchie the chapter name, he thought the latter. This is fitting for this week as Frenchie was looking at applying for new work.

Expect more about this book throughout the next 30 weeks as Julie and I go through it.

picture from clipartclipart.com

Sunday, January 1, 2012

Happy New Year!! 2012

I hope everyone had a wonderful New Years Eve. Frenchie and I watched a movie and went to bed just before midnight. We've both had a cold (Frenchie for a week, me for 3 days) and today isn't any different. Hopefully watching football all day will make us both feel better.

I'm not a fan of making resolutions, but I am a fan of setting goals and working towards them no matter how long it takes. I read a book that says, as long as you take steps towards your goals, you are a success.

That said, here are my goals for the year in no particular organized fashion or order

  1. Complete Jillian Michaels Ripped in 30 - She's so mean but definitely kicks your butt
  2. Start a dance class - Signed up for Ballet to start January 18th!
  3. Save more money and tighten up on a budget - We have a lot of vacations in 2013 planned.
  4. Possibly find a new job - I like mine, it's just not what I was hired for
  5. Renovate the kitchen cupboards - Change the color and add better organization
  6. Read 50 books! I missed by goal by 6 in 2011 but read some amazing books
  7. Go to church more often - I'd like to go twice a month
  8. Do a bible study - either with friends or by myself
  9. Keep in better touch with friends and family - Call friends and see family more often
  10. Meal plan weekly - We did pretty good this year and it sure makes life easier
  11. Start teaching piano in the fall. I have my business cards and schedule all laid out already. I just need to advertise closer to the fall and hopefully get 3 - 6 students. This will be a replacement for dance and hopefully turn into a business for me when we decide to start a family. I have so many plans in my head for when that time comes.
  12. I would like to complete my Grade 7 and Grade 8 Royal Conservatory of Canada. I already completed the exams when I was in high school, so I'm basically just going through both grades myself and then move onto Grade 9. Working towards my ARCT in Pedagogy. There is SO much work to do it's going to take a few years to complete.

This year will be full of ups and downs just like any year. We have a lot of things to look forward to. Frenchie's side will be blessed with two more grandbabies and in early 2013 another sister-in-law. All 4 boys will have wives!  My family will watch the 5 littles ones (4 girls and a boy) grow up another year. No plans for kids with us yet. We have some trips planned and a lot of life to spend together before we bless our little family with a child. For now Beta the furbaby will do. (She's 2 years old!!!)
Frenchie and I will celebrate one year of marriage this year. I can't believe it's been 6.5 months already. We've been together for 5 years and I couldn't ask for a better man in my life.

So here's to 2012! May you find joy, happiness, and live life to it's fullest. We always have ups and downs, it's how you deal with them that makes a difference.

Happy New Year!!!!