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We Love Sandra Boynton!

4 Aug

Sandra Boynton is my all time favorite illustrator and author for children’s book. I discovered her books while working in New York City back in the early 90s, after graduating from college. I am proud to say I have quite a sizeable collection of her titles.

My collection were read by M1 and M2 in their early years, and even me occasionally these days when the mood hits.

When M1 was a toddler, I taught her to read ‘But Not the Hippopotamus’. The child was amazing. She could recite the whole book with full of zest and expression without a glance at the pages. The only thing she struggled with was the long word ‘hippopotamus’ which came out as ‘neh-neh-neh-tamus’.

When M2 was 19 months’ old, she had her exposure to Sandra Boynton too. Multi-tasking at such an early age, she’s engrossed with ‘Barney’ on the TV while attempting to read ‘Doggies’ at the same time. You have to turn up the volume, ignore Barney and listen to her carefully.

Adorable is all I can say. Sigh… why do they grow up so fast?

M2readsSandraBoynton

Butterbeer

10 Apr

At the height of the Harry Potter years, M2 like every other fan, was Harry Potter crazed. She would read and re-read the books and knew lines by heart. It was rather heart-warming to see her (and M1 as well) do so much reading.

But thank goodness the craze was limited to just the books and not any collectibles although there were some Lego sets purchased. And both girls have a magic wand each, gifted from a friend who went to the Harry Potter theme park. I remember one day, many years ago, M2 came to me with a butterbeer recipe and asked if we could make it.

The beverage was of course served in the wizarding world of Harry Potter and back then, she thought it would be awesome if she could drink what Harry and friends drank. I still have the recipe, dating back to 2012 in my iPhone. I think we tried making it only once but don’t recall the outcome.

Fast forward to two weeks ago, at our local grocery store, lo and behold we saw a bottle of butterbeer! Of course we had to purchase it to try. And I must say it was quite refreshing but once the coldness ebbed away, the sweet side of the beverage became too much. Well, if we never tried, we would never have known.

I just wonder will this lead to a renewed interest in reading the books all over again? Only time can tell.

  

The Mona Lisa

13 Jan

I started reading the book ‘How to Think Like Da Vinci’ a Christmas gift from hubby. It sure is an interesting eye opener not because of Da Vinci himself but more of the fact it made me recall my encounter with the Mona Lisa.

I have been to Paris twice. The first trip when we wanted to visit the Louvre, we didn’t know the museum’s schedule well enough. It was closed and we were due to fly home the next day. Disappointed, we vowed that if we ever went back to Paris, we have to make the museum trip.

Went back we did, a few years later – 2013. During the second trip, hubby and my sibling were off for a business meeting, so I was left to my own devices. I decided to visit the Louvre. Thankfully, it was open.

And like every other tourist, I had to see the great painting. It was such a huge crowd, I couldn’t get any closer. And having a barrier and protective glass over it, it sure was hard to have a good look at the masterpiece.

Was it worth the hoopla? Depends on which angle you look at it. For me, it was merely a ‘been there, done that’ moment; didn’t move me. Give me a Monet anytime, I’d be totally inspired.

So back to my book, maybe reading it and trying to think like Da Vinci may move me better.

    

    
 

Losing Steam

12 Aug

Of late, I have been stuck at all levels of my virtual games so much so, I feel I am losing steam playing them.

Maybe I should stop. And immerse myself in the Olympics happening now in Rio. Or go back to reading especially that book on Genghis Khan that I started but stopped because the mountains were too epic for me. The book has been collecting a mountain of dust since then.

Or I could go back to carving owls. This too has lost steam because I have gotten lazy with it. It can get quite messy when the momentum picks up and I don’t like the cleaning up when I get done. But there simply has not been an opportunity to sit down quietly and be at it. Too much going in and out and this interrupts the focus. Losing steam. Sigh…

We Wait Again

14 Jul

My book, Genghis Khan, is pretty intense to read. I am constantly seeing vast lands of Mongolia as my imagination goes into overdrive. So I jump back to my games to reset or clear my thoughts.

Luckily, the latest chapter of Candy Crush on the iPad, Luscious Lagoon, was pretty easy. Made short work of it within a week and now I have to wait for Mellow Marshmallow to appear for the iPad. I must confess, I played it in Facebook on the laptop and now sitting at Level 1043.

However, my other two games are not so friendly. Stuck at Level 415 of Candy Crush Soda and Level 770 of Farm Heroes for sometime now. Sigh.

It Gets Tougher

7 Jul

It was a good thing I bought two new books to read. Level 1001 of Candy Crush is by far the toughest. Reading’s a good reprieve but I could not let the challenge go.
In the end, I used my precious gold bars, nine pieces mind you, to get that extra five moves and thank goodness, succeeded in passing the level. I have moved on to Tasty Treasury, the latest chapter on the iPad.

As for Candy Crush Soda, I’ve decided to take a break from it because I simply cannot go pass Level 415.

So back to reading.

I Should Read

6 Jul

Over the weekend, hubby complained that I have been on my iPad too much. Too much games, that is. Well, when one has four games to manage – to save farm animals, match candies, be a zookeeper and rescue gingerbread men, that’s a whole lot of responsibility to juggle! I am on my iPad in between work at the office and at home, before bedtime. And when I wake up, have my coffee in the morning, after dinner… okay, maybe I AM a little obsessed with it.

So I decided to break the pattern and go back to reading. But the third Jennifer Probst paperback that I am waiting for has not reached our shores and I don’t feel like reading Nora (Roberts). I seriously want to read again, so I picked up not one but two unusual titles from the bookstore. Not my typical fare but I think it will be interesting.

I shall be reading these for the next few days.

  

Back to Reading, Part 2

30 Dec

With the frustration of being stuck at Level 751 for Candy Crush, maybe I should go back to reading to regain some sense of calm and rid myself of all these frustration and despair. To make matters worse, both levels of Farm Heroes and Candy Crush Saga that I am currently at are no piece of cake either! Hrmph… is all I can say.

So it is a good thing I have gotten the latest Nora Roberts’ title, Whiskey Beach – I shall immerse myself in this book to clear my mind as I don’t fancy ushering in the New Year with all these negative feelings.

Back to reading it shall be for me!

Fifty Shades of Grey, Part 2

18 Sep

We were at the bookstore the other day when I discovered there’s another writer besides Nora Roberts, Jennifer Probst. I was contemplating getting her books (which I did) when M2 came up to me and gave me that knowing look and smirk for being in that book section. Children nowadays, hrmph.

Casually she told me, “Did you know ‘Fifty Shades of Grey’ is now a movie?”

“Yes, I know and don’t you dare go watch the trailer! And no, I will not buy the book to read.”

What’s the obsession with that book??? Eeesh.

Reading is Good

21 Aug

Zookeeper3I have forgotten how wonderful it is to read when my being glued to my games on the iPad consumes much of my free time. The author, Jennifer Probst, is enjoyable and creates vivid imagination with her style of story-telling! In two days, I have finished one book already and onto the second read.

Being stuck at Level 440 in Farm Heroes and Candy Crush turned out to be a blessing in disguise. For two days, I totally left my games, partly to enjoy the book I am reading and also to focus my energy on the book project that I am working on. When I went back to tackle Farm Heroes, taking a short break from reading, it was with renewed determination and I did it! Now, I face my nemesis, Rancid, at Level 441.

And the last two days, Candy Crush released its new chapter Fizzy Falls on Facebook. But this time, it required tickets for me progressed on from Glazed Grove to it; so I had to patiently wait for my fellow candy crushers to help me. And help they did. Thanks!

I guess reading has been good for I accomplished a lot. Even at work, the book project has progressed on smoothly. And… and… in Zookeeper Battle, I broke into the top ten thousand world ranking!!! Best ever position: 7938. A big yay to all these.