General musings on the ups and downs and ins and outs in the life of a 30 something, unmarried, life loving, some times interesting and sometimes not, mostly happy girl just trying to figure it all out!

Thursday, March 31, 2011

Pork Chops & Spring & Lorelei

I made Mexican Pork Chops Tuesday night for Niki to take over to her friend Tommie, who just had a baby. It's one of Niki's favorite meals. I don't really have a recipe. I just made it up one day and throw it together a little differently every time. It's YUM, though! And fairly light if you go easy n the cheese. So here's my method- you can try it and improvise for yourself.

Jar Salsa (any flavor is good- I used lime this time and it came out great)
Can stewed tomatoes (Mexican flavored if you can)
Small can green chillies
Can corn
Can black beans
Taco or fajitas seasoning
1-2 onions
1 bell pepper
tequila
Pork Chops
Rice (I like brown)
Cheese
Any other spices you want/like in Mexican. I use cilantro, but Niki hates it so I left it out this time.
(This is what I used for 8 pork chops. You can vary as needed)

- Cook rice & drain
- Season chops with taco seasoning and sear in a hot pan. Add some olive oil to coat the pan and tequila until it covers the bottom of the pan. Cook chops through.
- Add half of the salsa and all the green chilies to the rice & mix well.
- Saute onions and peppers in olive oil and tequila.
- Mix remaining salsa, tomatoes, corn, and beans with onion and bell pepper and heat through

To serve: Put rice on a plate, add chop(s) and cover in black bean mixture. Top with cheese and cilantro. Serve with corn chips for the extra salsa/rice.
OR
This is a great make-ahead. Put the rice in a baking dish, add chops, put a little of the black bean mixture on top and some cheese and set aside. Reheat in the oven at 350 for about 45 mins. Also reheat black bean mixture for more topping.

The state of my kitchen with everything going at once. I am a messy cook.
Finished chops (for reheating). Like I said- it's light if you go easy on the cheese... I didn't here. :)

Also, it's FREAKING BEAUTIFUL OUTSIDE! I had lunch at this park today. Ahhh...

And, finally, check out my cutest EVER niece and what she's learned.


Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Wish I Was Here Wednesday :(

Sadie and Sist are going to P'cola and I will miss it!!! Tear...

Saddest little Wish I Was Here Wednesday post ever...


Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Jobs & Kindergarten

I seem to have a real knack for finding jobs that use the skills I learned in kindergarten. I've only had two jobs since college. But still, both had elements of my 6 year old days on the multicolored carpet. Actually, I went to three different kindergarten because we moved twice that year. Well, actually only one. But my parents thought we were moving, so they changed my school. Then we didn't move. Then we actually moved. So there you go. Could this have anything to do with my kindergarten-related career paths? Maybe I'm trying to relive what I missed. At any rate...

At the DIB, I was always working with maps. But we had a fairly serious lack of technology. So when coding the maps, I used crayon. We must have had 40 3-foot pages of maps hand-colored by yours truly. They got a lot of use, I tell you. So my time spent coloring was worth it. And the irony here is that the only memory I have of my second kindergarten class (which I attended for about 2 months) is getting marks off for coloring outside of the lines. Number one, I was in kindergarten for goodness sake! Number two, joke's on you, teacher lady. I STILL color outside the lines and it's taken me far. Ha!

We also had kind of a glue stick thing going on at the DIB. Kim, my boss, was really into glue sticks. He had about 3 at his desk at any given time. No lie. And he used them. Regularly. He also hated brown, but that has nothing to do with kindergarten.

Now, at Monico, it's stickers. Stickers are everywhere. We most certainly do not have a lack of technology here. I have no idea what's going on most of the time there's so much technology. Technology is what we do. Or what they do. I market said technology. Come to find out, technology people are into labels. We label everything. But not just with boring old mailing labels. No, no. We have a Dymo labeler that gets used regularly and stuck onto things and custom logo stickers for boxes, screens, gateways, and other things I have no idea what they are. And then there are also product labels- which are also everywhere. I spent about two hours today putting stickers on things.

Plus there's my thing with post its, yet another form of sticker. I have post its everywhere. Sam, my coworker, made fun of me today. I have a line of them down one side of my desk and a grouping of them at the top of my desk. OK, Sam, we aren't all engineers that can calculate huge numbers without a calculator, write computer programs, and, apparently, keep how-to and to-do lists in our heads. I can hardly keep my own name in my head for goodness sake. And these people let me program things! Ha- what a joke! This, for me, requires extensive how-to lists. I have post it notes with lines for note taking. Then there's the to-do lists. I have to-do lists for my to-do lists. Because I make a to do list of tasks, then I make a to-do list of how do do a specific task on the original to-do list. Occasionally this requires a third to-do list.

Stickers and Crayons. That's my career. Now all I need to do is talk them into letting me have the kindergarten nap time and I'll be good to go.

Friday, March 25, 2011

Eye Liner

I have eye liner issues! It NEVER stays on! I think it's just me because I have tried Mark, Lancome, Clinique, Alamay, you name it- all long lasting, water proof, etc. A few weeks ago I read a magazine blurb about Urban Decay's 24/7 eye liner. Tried it- it bleeds. Is it just me? I've tried primer, using pressed powder under the liner. Surely there's a solution! (Emily??? bail me out!) I know liquid eye liner's supposed to be good for the issue- but let's be real here. I am waaaaaaaaaaay to much of a klutz. Like I could get it on without it being all over my face.

So what's the answer?

Thursday, March 24, 2011

Best Mani Ever

OK, so I have nothing to show from my trip to Pittsburgh. Literally, nothing, because my camera wouldn't turn on. My hotel room was great- I really liked it and the bed was ridiculously comfy. The conference was pretty boring. And I had no clue what anyone was talking about at any point in time. And that free time I thought I'd have- non existent. So there you go. I do have one good story:

I had to get up at 2am to make it to my boss' house in time to catch our flight. It was pretty much horrid. I was so exhausted by the time we arrived! Plus, the night before, I found out my friend Michael's dad was in a motorcycle accident and critically injured. So I was pretty upset. All of this led to my leaving my luggage in the lobby of the hotel. I checked in, went up to my room to relax for 20 minutes or so before we went to set up, and didn't notice until I went to get my makeup. So I run back down to find it, thankfully, sitting right where I left it. Unfortunately, my boss was already waiting for me and got to witness my stupidity. Great impression made there...

About the mani- I have horrid finger nails. I can go and get a professional manicure and my nails are chipped by the next day. I have tried everything- all polish types, manicure types, vitamins, clear coats, you name it. I even got fake nails once and my nails were so oily the fell off in 3 days. Honestly. And while my nails may be oily, my cuticles are ridiculously dry and my nails chip and peel like crazy. It's really rather tragic.

After moving (I'm a nail biter when stressed) and a new job- you can imagine my nails were a complete disaster. There's a place right by my office called "Rehab for Nails." I saw that name and knew it was for me! So I went in and got this gel manicure guaranteed to last for 2 weeks. Of course, I had no confidence it really would, but 3 days would be a record for me. Guess what- it's still on and good as new! I have a new obsession. And I'm PUMPED about it!

It's called the CND Shellac 14 Day Manicure. In love!!

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Bye Bye & Fill in the Blank Friday

Hello, Hello!
I am headed out of town for a few days- to Pittsburgh to be exact. For a conference, as you know. I'm feel a bit of trepidation because I don't know what to expect (and because I have some veeery ill-fitting company shirts to wear to the conference). Thankfully, I can talk to a brick wall- so I think I'll be all right. :)

I have no guest bloggers. I don't feel the necessity as I only have 14 followers. What am I, Sadie?? I actually have at least 6 people that read the blog that aren't followers. So I make it to the fab round number 20! But you know what? I have found that blogging is rather cathartic and so I do it for me. That being said, I'm going to fill out the "Fill in the Blank Friday" even though it's Sunday. ") My blog, my rules- right?

1. My biggest accomplishment thus far in life is... this is tough! I think learning to be myself. I was talking with AC last week about life and dating. I went from being completely insecure as a kid and in high school to being a little too independent since college. There's good and bad to the independence, and I'm learning to balance it. I think over the past few years- all the crap endured considered (which is mild compared to most)- I'm beginning to learn who I really am, that I love independence but need friends, and to truly appreciate how valuable knowing who you are, and who you want to be, can be in life. I expect to always be learning and growing, but I like who I am becoming.

2. My favorite place to sit in my house is... my sofa right now. But when my Granny's antique chair is recovered and here, it will be there.

3. My fashion philosophy is... Call Ashley Coggin!!!

4. Something every girl should have is... a Bible and best friends.

5. If you look in my purse right now you'd find... Shep's iPod, my silk change purse, my wallet, a small cosmetic bag that's rarely opened, my camera, three pins, a pocket knife (never go without!), chapstick and lip gloss. And probably some dirt.

6. My favorite music right now is... the sound of Nathan's laughter and "Colder Weather" by the Zac Brown Band.

7. My favorite part of my body is... YEAH RIGHT! What a question. OK, got it. My finger nails from the mani I got Friday.

Friday, March 18, 2011

For Japan with Love

My heart, and prayers, are with you. To those of you showing amazing bravery, you are honored in my heart today.


"Peace I leave you, my peace I give you." - Jesus (John 14:27)

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Pittsburgh Recs, Please!

On Monday morning (at 6am, unfortunately) my boss and I are headed to Pittsburgh for a conference. We're going as exhibitors and have only one pass to the actual conference part- he'll be using that. So it looks like I will have a few hours here and there to explore.

Room shot - hope it's as nice as it looks!
We're staying at the Westin Convention Center a few blocks from the waterfront and near their downtown area. Any suggestions on what to do? I've never been.

I want to check out "The Strip" which is only three blocks from the hotel. It has shops and public markets, supposedly.

I also want to visit Market Square, which is an area of restaurants, coffee shops, and public space that's a renovation and restoration project of the downtown. Coming from a downtown development background I'm into that.

What other ideas do you have for me? Quick and easy only- I'll only have a few hours here and there. And AC- you're getting a magnet! :)

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

Wish I Was Here Wednesday

I am in a serious nap mood for no good reason other than that I just want a nap. Yesterday was rainy, today is cloudy and foggy and I just want to curl up somewhere and sleep. This somewhere to be exact...




It's decorated my favorite color, it's overlooking beautiful scenery, we're going to pretend it's a perfect spring day. Now this is my idea of camping! Oh please, can I have a nap?

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Rodeo Queen

I went to the Houston Livestock Show & Rodeo twice already, once with Kae and once alone. It's incredibly fun! I think Niki and I are going to try and go back this weekend to take the kids to the carnival.There's a HUGE shopping area, a livestock show, a rodeo and horse show, concerts, a carnival and a crap ton of food!

Like I could resist!!
The first weekend Katie and I went and just browsed around the shopping area. There's so much to see it's fun to just look. Last weekend I took myself back to watch the ranching competition. Multiple ranches (seven in this case) come as teams and compete against one another in various events. It was completely entertaining and I loved it! I was a little late (Houston traffic and all) so I missed some. But I'll be going back next year.

Afterwards I browsed through the cows at the livestock show for a few hours. Like, 2. Really. I love cows. I have always wanted a cow as a pet. Besides, I bought myself a margarita and it was so strong I needed to walk it off!

After that I browsed the shopping again. Then my feet were exhausted, so I headed outside to choose one of the hundreds of places to eat, got some killer BBQ and yet another margarita, then headed home.


Shirt I found for Abi at Cupcake Photography
Boot Display!!

Very strong margaritas! YUM!
Potato stuffed with BBQ. Delish!
I have to tell you- it was a blast! I am by far the best date I have ever been on. :)

Monday, March 14, 2011

More Apartment Pics!!

OK, I finally spent long enough in my apartment to straighten up (mostly) and get some pictures for you. Just so all of you know- I am so content and happy here! Anyone want to come for a visit?

Always good to start a tour at the front door, right? This is my Ode to Louisiana sign, and, even better, the Welcome Home sign Nate made for me. :) S, the purse and octopus bag are hanging on the cowboy hook we bought at the flea market!

What you see when you come in the front door. Sorry the picture is a little dark (I'm not Abi, OK?) I need to get a better shot of the pictures for you guys. They are this artist I found at the big show in Pensacola and it looks like you can take the margarita right out of the picture! 

New shot of the dining area because I got a wine rack!

TV area, don't mind Van... she's just snoozing away on her personal sofa. The sign has the verse "A chord of three strands is not quickly broken," which reminds me of my sisters. The TV lives in the old Armoire. 

Vintage book arrangement on top of the TV that Niki did quite by accident and I love. They're all my western/cowboy books.

See, TV's there. 

OK, I took bad pictures! Sofa area...

A little better. Van insisted on being in these shots- the ham!

More books. What can I say? Sorry about the hedgehog's litter box- should have removed that before I took the shot. oh well- you've seen it in its authentic state! 

Rodeo pics to come. Happy Monday!

Friday, March 11, 2011

Hope and Faith and happy Weekend!

I am feeling a little worn out today. Knowing your sister is in harms way is a bit tragic.

I try to do a good job of remembering all of my blessings daily. And I do pretty well. I'm extremely grateful for my life. But days like today, when you go to sleep safe and wake up and the world is changed; those days are scary. These are the days we have to remember: God is Love.

I was reading in my Philip Yancey book that Jesus did not come into this world and heal everything and fix all wrongs. His miracles were few compared to the many needs of the world, and contained in a small geographical area. The purpose of his miracles was to prove that God does care. He cares when a man has leprosy, he cares when a woman just touches his robe for some relief, and he cares when earthquakes are shattering lives and waves are washing away hope.

Yancey also commented on hurt and trials. I just loved this excerpt:
" I find it strangely comforting that when Jesus faced pain He responded much as I do. He did not pray in the garden, " Oh, Lord, I am so grateful that you have chosen me to suffer on your behalf. I rejoice in the privilege." No, He experienced sorrow, fear, abandonment, and something approaching even desperation. Still, He endured because he knew that somewhere at the center of the universe lived his Father, a God of love he could trust regardless of how things appeared at the time."
Isn't that just great? We're not required to dutifully recite, "God is in control. God will take care of things." We can be sad and traumatized and upset. We can honestly say, "I don't like this!"




As far as we know, Katie and Justin are OK. We do know he survived the actual earthquake and was stuck at the Tokyo airport. No word after that or on any of the aftershocks.
Katie is in Guam, but the tsunami was supposedly mild there. So she should be safe and sound.

I sincerely hope that your weekend is blessed, and safe. I hope you hug the ones you love, are thankful for your life and just enjoy yourself!


****UPDATE: Just heard from Katie and she's fine. She talked to Justin and the situation isn't lovely, but he's OK!

Real News & Politics

I live in the South; Texas now and just moved from the heart of the Bible Belt. I am not really Democrat or Republican, per say. I tend to vote with my head and heart rather than holding a party line. I like Obama (Gasp- and I live south of the Mason-Dixon!) and I wasn't a huge Bush fan (kick me out of Texas, why don't you?). But all of that aside- I can find attributes and deficiencies for both- they're human.

I like debating politics (rationally) and talking about our leaders. I think it's healthy and a freedom we should embrace. My brother in law is fighting for our freedom via the Navy and he doesn't do it so we won't embrace them. Sometimes I wonder if the military loves fighting for the rights of some to be blatant idiots... but hey.

I hate those email forwards you get about politicians and laws, though. I think they're horrid and disrespectful. It totally irks me and sends me on tangents when I get them. You might not agree with them, but Obama is not the Antichrist and Bush didn't like killing soldiers.

What also irks me- people thinking celebrities' stupidity is news!

So... when I saw the facebook post reading: "Charlie Sheen is all over the news because he's a celebrity drug addict, while Andrew Wilfahrt 31, Brian Tabada 21, Rudolph Hizon 22, Chauncy Mays 25, are soldiers who gave their lives this week with no media mention. Please honor them by posting this as your status for a little while," I instantly reposted. How poignant.


The resulting news story is a tear jerker- and rather apropos with the current gay military service discussions. These are the kinds of things I think we should all be forwarding and recognizing- regardless of what we believe. I was so moved. These men and women are human beings with families and friends. They are real, not an enigma we can't touch.


So take a few minutes to honor those who fight for you and read this.
And say a prayer for my brother in law, will you? He's stranded in the Tokyo airport on his way home from a ground mission in Korea.
Bro-in-Law; Justin Pacheco

ARTICLE:

Viral post pits coverage of Sheen, fallen soldiers

By Wayne Drash, CNN
It started with a Facebook status update. Upset at the media's coverage of Charlie Sheen, someone took up for American soldiers dying in Afghanistan.
"Charlie Sheen is all over the news because he's a celebrity drug addict," it said, "while Andrew Wilfahrt 31, Brian Tabada 21, Rudolph Hizon 22, Chauncy Mays 25, are soldiers who gave their lives this week with no media mention. Please honor them by posting this as your status for a little while."
The status update has since gone viral, shared by tens of thousands on Facebook. An abbreviated version is on Twitter.
When a friend of mine posted the message on her Facebook page, it was a sobering reminder of the news media’s failings of covering the Afghanistan war. I kept returning to the names of the four soldiers. Who were these men? What’s their story?
I started by calling the father of Cpl. Andrew Wilfahrt (pronounced WILL-fort) in Rosemount, Minnesota.
“I think it’s spot on,” Jeff Wilfahrt said of the viral post.
His 31-year-old son was killed while on foot patrol outside Kandahar on February 27, around the same day the Sheen media blitz kicked into high gear.
“From the Charlie Sheens to Lindsay Lohans, who are these people and what good have they done in society?” Jeff Wilfahrt said. “What are we collectively doing as a society? How do you wake people up?
“In part, sir,” he said, “I blame the press.”
Andrew Wilfahrt was a Renaissance man with an infectious laugh. In his obituary, his parents described him as “compassionate, smart and witty. He was an admirer, composer and player of music who believed deeply in art and humanity. Andrew was fascinated by math, palindromes, maps, patterns, mashed potatoes and the absurd.”
He was also anti-war - part of a “strong family of lefties” from Minnesota, his father said. Andrew stunned everyone when he announced two years ago he was joining the Army.
“He didn’t have a child and a wife,” Jeff Wilfahrt said. “In a way, he went over so that somebody with a young family wouldn’t die.”
The grieving father added, “He was a gay soldier.”
His son agonized over the decision to join the military because Andrew knew he’d have to keep his sexuality a secret. He kept quiet when he first signed up, but his fellow soldiers knew.
“Andrew told me one of the reasons he wanted to enlist was that he felt guilty as a civilian when so many men with wives and children were separated from their families," one of his comrades posted on Facebook. "He joined the fight so that guys like me didn’t have to. He is my hero, my friend, and I miss him. Sleep well, buddy. You earned it.”
Andrew’s younger sister, Martha, said the “least interesting thing” about her brother was his sexuality.
“Quite frankly,” the father said, “nobody gave a s*** he was gay. He was a good soldier.”
His mother, Lori Wilfahrt, told Minnesota Public Radio her son was an “interesting, wonderful young man” who joined the service because he was “looking for a purpose.” Andrew wanted to be with a “group of people that would be working together toward something.”
In a recent letter home, he told his mother that “everybody knows … [and] nobody cares” about his homosexuality. In combat, he rode with two other soldiers. One was African-American, the other from Hawaii. The unit called them "Team Minority."
“He was a gentle soul and he was very kind and compassionate,” said Lori Wilfahrt.
As Sheen’s every comment was dissected on TV and plastered across the internet, the Wilfahrts quietly buried their son.
“In exchange for a son, we got a flag and a bunch of medals,” his dad said. “That’s a helluva tradeoff.”
He’s torn by all that’s happened. Jeff Wilfahrt said he’s always been a peace activist and staunch opponent of war, yet he added, “I’m so proud of him and his service.”
His voice breaks. It’s likely his son is among the first gay soldiers to die in combat since Don’t Ask Don’t Tell was repealed in December. “I’d do anything to honor my son.”
'Truly an American hero'
From Texas to Nevada to California, three other families mourned loved ones mentioned in the viral post. I was unable to reach those families, but I pieced together these snapshots from local reports and Army news releases.
Spc. Brian Tabada was the youngest soldier honored in the Facebook status update. A fire support specialist with the 101st Airborne, he was killed February 27 in northeastern Afghanistan when his patrol was ambushed by insurgents using small-arms fire and rocket-propelled grenades.
He joined the Army in 2008 and quickly earned an array of medals, including the Army Achievement Medal.
His mother met his flag-draped coffin at Dover Air Force Base and escorted her son’s body home to Las Vegas. Nevada’s governor ordered flags at half-staff.
“Tabada made the ultimate sacrifice and we are forever grateful,” Gov. Brian Sandoval said in a written statement. “I believe it is right to honor his life, service and his sacrifice.”
Spc. Rudolph Hizon, a 22-year-old Los Angeles native, was killed when insurgents attacked his brigade with the 10th Mountain Division in Afghanistan’s eastern Logar province.
A Bronze Star recipient, Hizon was best known for his radiant smile and love of life. Hizon enlisted with the Army in January 2009 and was deployed to Afghanistan last October.
“I will always think of him as the happy and cheerful person he was,” Spc. Joshua Gonzales told Task Force Patriot public affairs. “I’m going to miss him dearly.”
“He is truly an American hero,” Tito Pong wrote on a Los Angeles Times obituary tribute page. “We are very proud of him and we are very much going to miss him.” Added Pfc. Lorien Rilate, “You had such a big heart and you always knew how to make someone feel better.”
In the eastern corner of Texas, residents in the town of Cookville honored Staff Sgt. Chauncy Mays, a father of two young girls. Mays, a member of the 10th Mountain Division, was killed February 28 in eastern Afghanistan’s Wardak province.
A highly decorated soldier, Mays worked as an explosives ordnance disposal technician; the Army credits him with saving countless lives for disarming hidden bombs in the region.
“He was a leader who led from the front,” Army Sgt. Chandara Hak told Task Force Patriot public affairs. “He was always careful, but never fearful. I will do my best to follow in his example.”
Army Capt. Aaron Teller said Mays epitomized the best of the American soldier. “He would give you the shirt off his back without hesitation.”
Those were traits Mays displayed even in high school. "He cared about people and worked hard to encourage them," his teacher, Josh Stegall, said at amemorial service. "He lived to serve."
Since February 26, when the Sheen story began dominating headlines, at least 13 U.S. troops have died in support of the Afghanistan war. Besides the four honored in the Facebook post, seven others were Sgt. Kristopher Gould, 25; Spc Christopher Stark, 22; Pfc. David Fahey, 23; Spc. Jason Weaver, 22; Cpl. Jordan Stanton, 20; Staff Sgt. Mark Wells, 31; and Pfc. Kalin Johnson, 19.
Senior Airman Nicholas Alden, 25, and Airman Zachary Cuddeback were killed in a March 2 attack on troops at the airport in Frankfurt, Germany.
Italian Lt. Massimo Ranzani, 36, and British Lance Cpl. Liam Richard Tasker were also killed in Afghanistan in late February and early March. Another British soldier whose name has not been released was killed Wednesday.
As I looked at the names of those who’ve died in the last two weeks, I thought about my phone conversation with Jeff Wilfahrt.
“Get this on the front headlines,” he said, “and make people aware of what’s going on.
“That’s what I’d do if I was king. But I'm just an unemployed 58-year-old man in Minnesota who misses his son.”


Thursday, March 10, 2011

100 Books

The BBC put out a list of the 100 books to read before you die. Slightly morbid, but OK! This is like the bucket list of books. So I decided to see how I was doing. Mine are highlighted in green. I'm nervous- haven't read too many of the classics...

1. The Lord of the Rings, JRR Tolkien
2. Pride and Prejudice, Jane Austen
3. His Dark Materials, Philip Pullman
4. The Hitchhiker's Guide to the Galaxy, Douglas Adams
5. Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire, JK Rowling
6. To Kill a Mockingbird, Harper Lee
7. Winnie the Pooh, AA Milne

8. Nineteen Eighty-Four, George Orwell
9. The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe, CS Lewis
10. Jane Eyre, Charlotte Brontë

11. Catch-22, Joseph Heller
12. Wuthering Heights, Emily Brontë
13. Birdsong, Sebastian Faulks
14. Rebecca, Daphne du Maurier
15. The Catcher in the Rye, JD Salinger (This was not a good book, FYI!)
16. The Wind in the Willows, Kenneth Grahame
17. Great Expectations, Charles Dickens
18. Little Women, Louisa May Alcott

19. Captain Corelli's Mandolin, Louis de Bernieres
20. War and Peace, Leo Tolstoy
21. Gone with the Wind, Margaret Mitchell
22. Harry Potter And The Philosopher's Stone, JK Rowling (I don't really want to read these... is that OK?)
23. Harry Potter And The Chamber Of Secrets, JK Rowling
24. Harry Potter And The Prisoner Of Azkaban, JK Rowling
25. The Hobbit, JRR Tolkien
26. Tess Of The D'Urbervilles, Thomas Hardy
27. Middlemarch, George Eliot
28. A Prayer For Owen Meany, John Irving
29. The Grapes Of Wrath, John Steinbeck
30. Alice's Adventures In Wonderland, Lewis Carroll
31. The Story Of Tracy Beaker, Jacqueline Wilson
32. One Hundred Years Of Solitude, Gabriel García Márquez
33. The Pillars Of The Earth, Ken Follett
34. David Copperfield, Charles Dickens
35. Charlie And The Chocolate Factory, Roald Dahl
36. Treasure Island
, Robert Louis Stevenson (when I was sooo young- barely remember)
37. A Town Like Alice, Nevil Shute
38. Persuasion, Jane Austen
39. Dune, Frank Herbert
40. Emma, Jane Austen
41. Anne Of Green Gables, LM Montgomery
42. Watership Down, Richard Adams
43. The Great Gatsby, F Scott Fitzgerald
44. The Count Of Monte Cristo, Alexandre Dumas
45. Brideshead Revisited, Evelyn Waugh
46. Animal Farm, George Orwell
47. A Christmas Carol, Charles Dickens (I read part of it...)
48. Far From The Madding Crowd, Thomas Hardy
49. Goodnight Mister Tom, Michelle Magorian
50. The Shell Seekers, Rosamunde Pilcher
51. The Secret Garden, Frances Hodgson Burnett
52. Of Mice And Men, John Steinbeck
53. The Stand, Stephen King
54. Anna Karenina, Leo Tolstoy
55. A Suitable Boy, Vikram Seth
56. The BFG, Roald Dahl
57. Swallows And Amazons, Arthur Ransome
58. Black Beauty, Anna Sewell
59. Artemis Fowl, Eoin Colfer
60. Crime And Punishment, Fyodor Dostoyevsky
61. Noughts And Crosses, Malorie Blackman
62. Memoirs Of A Geisha, Arthur Golden
63. A Tale Of Two Cities, Charles Dickens
64. The Thorn Birds, Colleen McCollough
65. Mort, Terry Pratchett
66. The Magic Faraway Tree, Enid Blyton
67. The Magus, John Fowles
68. Good Omens, Terry Pratchett and Neil Gaiman
69. Guards! Guards!, Terry Pratchett
70. Lord Of The Flies, William Golding (HORRID book!!)
71. Perfume, Patrick Süskind
72. The Ragged Trousered Philanthropists, Robert Tressell
73. Night Watch, Terry Pratchett
74. Matilda, Roald Dahl
75. Bridget Jones's Diary, Helen Fielding
76. The Secret History, Donna Tartt
77. The Woman In White, Wilkie Collins
78. Ulysses, James Joyce
79. Bleak House, Charles Dickens
80. Double Act, Jacqueline Wilson
81. The Twits, Roald Dahl
82. I Capture The Castle, Dodie Smith
83. Holes, Louis Sachar
84. Gormenghast, Mervyn Peake
85. The God Of Small Things, Arundhati Roy
86. Vicky Angel, Jacqueline Wilson
87. Brave New World, Aldous Huxley
88. Cold Comfort Farm, Stella Gibbons
89. Magician, Raymond E Feist
90. On The Road, Jack Kerouac
91. The Godfather, Mario Puzo
92. The Clan Of The Cave Bear, Jean M Auel
93. The Colour Of Magic, Terry Pratchett
94. The Alchemist, Paulo Coelho
95. Katherine, Anya Seton
96. Kane And Abel, Jeffrey Archer
97. Love In The Time Of Cholera, Gabriel García Márquez
98. Girls In Love, Jacqueline Wilson
99. The Princess Diaries, Meg Cabot
100. Midnight's Children, Salman Rushdi


Only 17! With as much as I read??? Oh my. maybe I don't agree with the BBC?

A few I would add. And these are not just faves (I have a ton), but truly great, life affecting books.
A long Way Gone Ishmael Beah
Life of Pi Yann Martel
The Case for Faith Lee Strobel
Three Cups of Tea Greg Mortenson
The Hiding Place Corrie Ten Boom
The Help Kathryn Stockett


All About Ashley

My photo
Spring, TX, Southern, United States
Playing with and keeping up with my nephew and niece take up a lot of my time. Van Geaux takes up the rest of it. Work is an afterthought most days! I like to be outside- but not when it's too hot. I get bored at my desk all day. Niki keeps my world spinning and without her and AC I'd lose it. My work ethic crashes at 4 p.m. daily and I live my sweet puppy and my hedgehog whenever I am not at Niki's. I truly believe naps are quality pass-time events, and sometimes I say bad words at work. I'm pretty sure I'm insane on multiple levels and I believe rules don't apply to me.
It seems that my life is quite entertaining. I didn't realize this myself, but was informed of it by my friends- who are rather entertained by tales of my life occurrences.

I'm far from a professional writer. These are just stories, comments, and other items for simple amusement. Hopefully it's a fun read, as Shannon plans to edit it into a book one day! Maybe we'll become famous, and maybe we'll just have some good laughs at my expense (and some other characters in my life). Either way, happy reading!















There was an error in this gadget