imbecamiel: (Default)
Finally got stuff together from the Wisconsin trip, as per usual!

First the book stuff:

Book stuff here! )
 

And just a few pictures from the trip. (It was hard to narrow it down to only a few. XD)

Photos here! )

The Books!

Jun. 21st, 2016 11:05 am
imbecamiel: (BookStackLight)
Finished getting together my traditional list of books read on the trip and review-ish thoughts on them!

So without further ado, here are the books! My feelings on them this year were a bit more of a mixed bag than has been the case in recent years, I think, but there were plenty that I really loved.

Cut for many words )


Total pages read on the trip: Approximately 5880. (Some estimation necessary, based on other version lengths, to account for the fact that the library only had the large print version of one, which obviously has... a lot more pages. XD)

So yeah. Not a record-breaking trip, but definitely a good one.
imbecamiel: (Hobbit)
I have returned! I always feel kind of off-balance, coming back and getting smacked with The Real World after a week of cutting myself off from things as much as possible.

It was such a lovely trip, though. So relaxing, and having gone there at least once a year for the last twenty-five years now, more full of nostalgia and good memories than anywhere else I can think of. A couple of days this year got pretty sticky to get through without air conditioning, to say the least, but even those we managed to get through with ice cream and swimming and a minimum of whining. *g* (Did you know that Minnesotans actually start to melt when it gets too hot? It's a fact. Science.)  

Book tally for me wasn't a record, but not bad for having less than 8 days: 20 books finished, and... two halves. XD (Gave up on one halfway through, but then got about halfway through another.)

As usual, I'll get the list of books and my thoughts up when I can.

*hugs all around*
imbecamiel: (BookStackLight)
Gettin' ready to head out tomorrow night on my annual "disconnect from everything as much as possible and binge-read ALL THE THINGS" trip to the cabin that we've been renting for... wow, the last 25 years now?

This year's going to be a little different from most, since it may need to be a semi-working vacation. I've got one new client who's in kind of a tricky place, so I probably won't be able to set everything aside while I'm gone. So... sadly, I probably will not beat my current standing record of 23 books in just over a week. I've got about 30 books to bring anyway, though, so we'll see how far I get. *g*

Anyhow - after tomorrow I'll be pretty well disappearing from the internet for about a week, but I shall catch up with you all when I get back!
imbecamiel: (BookStack)
 Whelp, this took me long enough. One crisis after another—mostly on others’ parts, with me playing a supporting role—followed by basically a complete emotional collapse on my part, complete with my body deciding to throw in plenty of protests against... everything. I think I’m finally getting back on an up swing, though, so I finally got around to finishing this. And because it’s taken so long, I’m not gonna go back through and edit too much, so—hopefully nothing proves to be too incoherent. :P

Lotsa books under the cut! )

Home!

Jun. 20th, 2014 04:07 pm
imbecamiel: (Hobbit)
Well, I'm back. ^^

Had a lovely trip, did lots of fun stuff, and read... 22 books, and about 50 pages of the 23rd. More details, and brief reviews of the books I read as usual, to follow when I get the chance!

I've got a ridiculous number of things to catch up on now, naturally. And tomorrow I'll be spending the vast majority of the day helping a friend's family cook and set up for her graduation party - and then Sunday afternoon will be helping host, and probably clean up afterward. So I'm kinda hitting the ground running, here. XD

Still, this trip always leaves me refreshed and ready to go like no other vacation can. Not "ready to be home" because I'm tired of traveling, but really mentally rested and eager to get back to work. It's a good feeling.

Hope life's been good to you all in the meantime! *hugs all around*
imbecamiel: (BookStackLight)
This... took me rather longer than anticipated. But - I finally have a (mostly functioning) brain again! Now if this stupid cough would just leave... XP

Anyhow - trip stuff!

Bit of general trip stuff + book comments here! )
imbecamiel: (Imbecamiel)
Bullet point version:

- Trip was lovely
- Number of books read: 21, and a bit of a 22nd. Not bad, considering...
- I am sick. Soooo sick. My brain has decided to go on its own separate vacation, and is currently refusing to provide an ETA for its return. I may have to fire it and get a new one. That kind of irresponsible behavior can not be tolerated.
- We are now in the middle of a very bad storm, and may lose our power at any moment.

More details, and comments on all the books I read, to follow as usual, once I have a functioning brain again.
imbecamiel: (BookStackLight)
Yep, it's that time of year again... when I look around and attempt to recall all the books I've been meaning to read, all memory of which seems to have abruptly vanished...

In other words - getting ready to head to the cabin in a couple weeks! This year, I am determined to achieve my goal of 20 books in 10 days (or possibly 8-9 days, depending on exactly which day we need to come back). To that end, I've been gathering stacks of books that I've purchased lately and requesting things from the library.

I generally try to bring a few more books than I know I'll get to, to account for both varying moods in what type of reading material I feel like and for the inevitable book or two that I start and just don't like for whatever reason. This year I've been keeping somewhat better lists than usual, so I thought I'd be pretty well set. But, between the library not having some books I'd like to read and the fact that my list's skewed more heavily toward nonfiction than usual, I find myself in need of a few more recommendations to round things out.

Any thoughts? Sex content and heavy-duty swearing tend to be big turn-offs for me, but I'm happy to try a wide variety of genres. (This trip, especially, tends to be my time to try things I might not otherwise get around to. Anything from G.K. Chesterton essays to children's/YA novels.) Newer books are great, but so are older ones/classics. (There've been some that in recent years I've been startled to realize I'd never gotten around to, despite their being so well known.) I try to balance out heavier reads with light, fluffy stuff, so either is excellent. Even if the library doesn't have it or I don't get to it this time, I'll keep it in mind for later reading. ^^
imbecamiel: (Queen's Library)
(Started typing this up yesterday, and then got too tired to finish them meme and had to get some sleep. So let's try this again!)

Because I've been sick, I actually ended up not leaving home for the last week. (Aside from walking the dog, that is.) Not actually a big hardship for introvert-me. But then, today, my whole family went out to Applebee's for lunch. Which was lovely. Aside from the reminder of jus why shouldn't leave the house, that is. *g*

Basically - my meal had french fries with it. If I'm gonna have french fries, naturally I'm gonna need to have ketchup. So, I pick up the bottle, and open it to squirt on my plate. Only, it doesn't squirt. Even before I start squeezing, it... explodes. On my plate, over the edge of my plate, on the table, on my skirt, on the front of my jacket, on the sleeve of my jacket... *sighs* So now I'm in the middle of the restaurant, and I've gotta clean the ketchup off myself. Start looking for a napkin, and... manage to catch my hand on my water glass. My very large water glass, which, since it is the beginning of the meal, is also very full. Water goes flying, ice slides across the table, into the walkway... and, since I'm at the back of a circular booth, there's really nothing I can do to mitigate the damage. Or, y'know, flee the scene. I think we had three servers, all told, helping to clean things up. In the middle of the lunch rush. 

Eh, maybe I should just stay home for another week. XD


And now - a couple of memes! First one's a literary one from [livejournal.com profile] goldvermilion87. If there are a bunch of typos in my answers, it'd be because things have been glitching oddly. My browser, my computer, LJ in general... I tried to go through and fix them, but I'm not sure if I caught everything. 

Long meme of longness under the cut! )


And a second meme, this one from [livejournal.com profile] hakaisha   -

Name me a character and I will tell you:

- Why I love them or why I wish they'd go die in a fire.
- My OTP for the character
- My favorite gen relationship with this character.
- An unpopular opinion about this character.
- One thing I wish would [have] happen[ed] with this character in canon.
- An idea I have for the character that I haven't written yet/won't ever write for whatever reason

Can be for any of my fandoms. If you don't know/can't remember if I like one that you do, just ask. ;D


ETA: Seriously LJ, what is up with this? It seems to be removing the characters immediately before and after any italicized section, even if I go back and fix it. Whyyyyyy....
imbecamiel: (Default)
"It is ridiculous to suppose that the man who can understand the inmost intricacies of a human being who has never existed at all cannot make a guess at the conduct of man who lives next door.[...] It is idle, in short, for a man who has created men to say that he does not understand them."

- G.K. Chesterton

I love Chesterton. That is all. 
imbecamiel: (BookStackLight)
And a lovely trip it was, too. Well, two trips, really. Wow, going to Nebraska feels like a really long time ago, now. But yeah, we had a good time with our grandma, and our... er, step-cousin, I guess she is? And various other step-relatives-in-law-whatever-you'd-call-them. Wasn't really a long visit, but fun.  

Neffie and I had quite the little "aww" moment when we got to the hotel - I started going through our suitcase to get stuff out and discovered... a toy mouse tucked down among the clothing. Our Ro-kitty has a tendency to sit forlornly inside suitcases and laptop cases whenever packing starts, as if he's hoping that one of these times he won't get forgotten at home. Apparently this time he felt we needed a little memento to bring along. <3

And the cabin was wonderful and relaxing, as always. Hard to believe that we've been going there for 21 years now.... A lot's changed over the years, but one thing hasn't: seems like every year, at least one thing has to break or otherwise Go Very Wrong. This year, we arrived to find that, among other things, the freezer was absolutely covered in nasty mold, the boat wasn't working, the stove wasn't working... and then the grill quit too. So things looked like being a bit of a potential disaster, possibly even one to rival the year when we were trying to clean the place without running water. But we got things sorted out in the end - except for the boat, but that was mostly okay anyway because there was much better fishing right off the dock than usual. So it was good. 

Among the things that did change were the friends and family that we visited, which was tough. One of the family friends we usually visit (who we've known since I was about three) did come to see us, but it may be the last time we see him for a long time because he and his new wife are moving to Florida. We didn't get to see my uncle at all, mostly because he just had cataract surgery and wasn't up for it. But the hardest was not seeing my great-aunt Helen, because she's almost certainly going to die any day now. And I just... will probably post something about that later, because right now I'm still in full-on avoidance mode and just trying not to think about it too much.

But. Happier note: it was a really good trip, and we had mostly great weather, and everyone had plenty of time to do whatever they wanted. So Nef and I swam almost every day, and she wrote a ton, and I read a ton, Mom scrapbooked and wrote, the guys golfed and fished, and we ate junk food and stayed up late and slept in, and all was good. *g*

We also went to see Avengers again while we were there! It was insanely hot on Saturday, the cabin doesn't have any kind of air conditioning (we're lucky to manage a few functioning fans), and we didn't feel like fighting with the Weekend Hordes for the lake (okay, it wasn't as busy as all that, but considering things are pretty much deserted during the week we'd rather do stuff when we had the place to ourselves). So we went to Avengers. And it was just as awesome the second time. \o/

Although I did notice one thing that's now driving me just slightly crazy. It was only on the second viewing that I realized that Hawkeye was shooting left-handed, which surprised me. At first I thought it might be an interesting and subtle way of showing another difference when he's being mind-controlled by Loki. But no, he shoots lefty afterward, during the final battle, as well. But... he shoots with his right hand in Thor. And I don't understaaaand, because if the actor is just left-eye dominant and/or more comfortable using his left hand, then why wouldn't he do it that way for both movies? But if it was a matter of conforming to the comics (no idea if comic-verse!Hawkeye is left- or right-handed)... then again, why not both movies? *flails* Okay, yes, Nef finds it hilarious that I'm bugged by this. But I think that I just need to watch the movie again, to see if the bow's design allows for ambidexterity. 

Ahem.

Anyhow! Now for my traditional commentary on the books I read while I was there!

Books! Also, new puppy picture. :D )


Oh, and on a final note... Um, I have committed Avengers fanfic. I didn't intend to. I really, really didn't. But then I just happened to stumble across a prompt that went and took my brain hostage. So I had to write it. XD Anyhow, if you care to read it, it's posted here on AO3.
imbecamiel: (Could Only Spare A Moment)


Yep, it's that time of year again: my annual break from technology. Heading off to a cabin in the woods for a whole lot of rest, relaxation, and reading. Lots and lots of books. Last year I read... about 17, I think. I'm hoping to make it over 20 this year. *g* 

We're actually going to be meeting our grandma in Nebraska first over the weekend, before heading back the other way to Wisconsin, so I'll be sort of around for a few more days before dropping off the face of the earth entirely. ^^ 

See y'all when I get back!
imbecamiel: (Scarlet Pimpernel Flower)
Okay, maybe it's technically impossible to actually hug a season. But boy, I sure do want to this year. *g*

Y'know those huge piles of ice and snow that accumulate over the winter from the plowing of parking lots and such? (Well, at least... in certain parts of the world they do. This is one of those parts. So if you're not familiar with them just imagine, if you will, very large heaps of compacted snow, ice, and dirt, and sand, and the occasional bits of trash. It's about the closest we get to mountains, around here.) I realized that, as of when we were in town Thursday... not all of them had finished melting yet. Srsly. But things are looking up, because... 

Spring! It looks like Spring! There are actual teeny little leaves on some of the trees, and visible buds on the others! And I've seen... *counts* I believe it's four varieties of flowers blooming, now. If you count the dandelions. Which, at this point, I totally do. ;) And the birds are going crazy! And the hummingbirds are back! And a falcon grabbed one of the redwing blackbirds off our feeder today, and hit our window in the process! Yeah, er, that one was interesting. *g* And... I do believe some otters have moved into our lake. \o/

Naturally, with all the spring-ness here at last, I'm finally starting to think June might actually get here for realz someday. And thus, starting to look forward to our yearly June trip to the cabin. And starting to gather together my reading lists for the trip. Last year, if I recall correctly, it was something like... fourteen books in ten days? At any rate, most years I finish approximately a book or two a day. It'd be kinda fun to see if I can get to twenty, one of these years. *g* Which, of course, means the traditional yearly request...

Anyone have some good book recommendations? 

My typical genres of choice tend to be Sci-Fi and Fantasy, but I'm definitely up for recommendations outside what I'd normally gravitate to, fiction or non-fiction.  (Loved your Western and Mystery recs from last year, [livejournal.com profile] cairistiona7! In the past I've thought that Westerns were one of the few genres that just held no real interest for me... but experience has taught me that all it really takes is the right book.<3) For this trip, I tend to gravitate toward mainly lighter reading - by which I mean, not overly dark/depressing, not a lot of major tragedies. I'm all for tougher reads/thicker books, though, not just fluff. (Though I usually bring some of that too. Ah Star Trek novels... I know you're rarely great writing, sometimes not even the best of fanfiction, but I do so enjoy you anyway. *g*) And even the whole "not too tragic" thing's just a general preference, not a hard and fast rule. ^.^   

So... thoughts, ideas, recommendations? All are much appreciated, and even if I don't get to them on this trip, I save the titles to look into at later dates. :3
imbecamiel: (Default)
Wayfarer - is utterly awesome. Seriously. Anyone who has not read this (and the first one, Spell Hunter, naturally) needs to do so. I loved the first one greatly, but this one? Is utter win, and everything that a sequel should be. Definitely the perfect midway-point break to encourage me to keep going. (Well, that or send me into utter despair because I will never manage anything like that, but yeah. Let's go with encouragement, shall we? *g*) Shall be expounding upon its awesomeness in greater detail soon, but right now I need to save that energy for actual, er, writing. 'Cause I haven't done any today. (Tuesdays seem to be... not good for me.) Still, even so - 

14432 / 25000 (57.73%)
Is not bad, yes? ^.^

Also, while I'm here - got a few other character-related doodles done the other day, so I thought I'd put them up. 

Moar story doodles here. )
imbecamiel: (Dragon - Ate my Muse)
 Lookit! I got myself a writing progress meter! 

4556 / 25000 (18.22%)


Hehe, didn't do it earlier 'cause I kinda thought it'd wind up more depressing than motivating. But things are still moving along! I'm even ahead of schedule - a little. ^.^

And in the spirit of further motivating myself I have ordered the Prince of Egypt movie soundtrack. Because fun music is always inspirational, even if it has nothing whatsoever to do with what I'm writing. Plus, I found a copy of the CD in new condition from Alibris for six dollars - that's including shipping. Considering this is the same price as the Amazon download-only MP3 file, which might or might not work with my iPod? Oh yeah. 

I have also ordered [livejournal.com profile] rj_anderson's Wayfarer. I tend to be hesitant to buy hardcover copies of books unless I'm very sure that I'll like it (even then... usually wait for paperback), but I am sick of sitting around being frustrated by our library not having the books I want to read. So on [livejournal.com profile] cirtholien's assurance that it's at least as good as the first book, I went ahead and got it. This'll be... either my end-of-NaNo relaxation, or my halfway point reward, depending on how the writing goes. *g*

Teh Books.

Jun. 21st, 2010 11:00 pm
imbecamiel: (BookStackLight)
 *hugs all around* Thanks for the welcome back, mellyn-nin. I missed you all! 

As I said earlier, the trip was fun, though mostly uneventful. (Aside from all the tornado stuff that last night... but anyhow.) With it being rainy and cool so much of the time, we ended up doing more indoor stuff than usual. Since my brother absolutely loves card games, he insisted that we needed to learn two new ones: rook, and whist. Heh heh, I don't actually hate card games in general, but... by the end of the trip, I was thoroughly sick of both. Eric gets very bored when it's rainy. ;) Still, it is rather fun to actually understand whist - if only because I can now actually comprehend certain passages of the Horatio Hornblower books. *g*

Otherwise, not a whole lot to speak of, aside from the reading. Though I do wonder - are bears actually that much more plentiful now, or is it just co-incidence? Because we've been seeing far more of them the last few years than we ever did in the past. Hmm.

In no particular order, then... Comments on the books. These are more my impressions and opinions than actual descriptions or reviews, so - if you want any details on one you haven't read, just ask. :)

Book stuff! ) So there 'tis. ^.^

Hehe, purely out of curiosity, I did a quick count-up of the number of pages I read, and it comes up to something over 4300 pages. Not that that means a whole lot, of course, with books of varying sizes and prints and all, but... yeah. I am very happy now. So much wonderful reading....

And I'm actually almost caught up on all the post-trip behindness! (Which, yes, is not a word, but I don't care. ;P) Mostly just fun stuff left to reply to, now. :D

But not tonight, because Nef wants to go to bed, and is objecting to the lights being on. She refuses to believe me when I tell her that sleep is overrated. Pfft. Little sisters. <3

EDIT: *headdesk* Sorry for all the random formatting, here. I have no idea what LJ is doing to it, it's just being... weird. And I can't seem to get it all fixed. Meh.

I'm back!

Jun. 19th, 2010 05:10 pm
imbecamiel: (Could Only Spare A Moment)
I have returned!

*is promptly buried under a pile of things to catch up on*

'Twas a wonderful trip - rather rainy and cool, but very relaxing. :) I think I may well have set a new record for myself - within the first 36 hours, I'd read four books, and had a good start on the fifth. I read 14 total over the course of the trip, plus a little over half of a 15th. Not bad... I'd been rather hoping that I might actually finish 20 this time, but there were a couple days when I didn't get so much reading time. So. Ah well. *g* Very fun.  

Shall be back with a bit more detailed account - and a rundown of books read and my thoughts on them. But first I've gotta go sign a certain contract and get a bio sent in to my publisher. (Hehe. Yeah, never really thought I'd be saying that.) Naturally they'd wait to contact me until the one time of the year when I don't check my e-mail for 10 days.... XD Still, I'm very relieved. I hadn't heard from them since I sent in my final changes to the manuscript, and since there were a few places where the editor and I had some differences of opinion... I was beginning to get concerned. But it appears all is well now, and there were actually some nice surprises when I was able to read over the full contract (regarding both the specific rights I retain, and potential future royalties in addition to what was stated up front). So. I'm happy. :D
imbecamiel: (Percy Gadzooks)
 Well, it's that time of year, again... Preparing to head off to the cabin in Wisconsin, and I'm going over my various to-read lists, figuring out what the library has, and trying to gather together a nice variety of books to read. I can generally figure on getting about 10-15 read while I'm there, and I like to take along some extras, to leave room for my whim in type of reading material, and also account for the possibility of disliking a book enough to not want to finish it (though that hasn't happened to me so often). This year the vast majority of my list is fantasy or scifi, which is neither unusual nor undesirable, but I do like to get some variety. *g*

Any ideas or recommendations? *is hopeful*

Essentially, what I've got on the list for non-fiction and fiction that's not fantasy/scifi is some P.G. Wodehouse (because, believe it or not, I don't think I've read a single thing by him - though I've recently loved what I've seen of the Jeeves & Wooster TV series), and various C.S. Lewis books. I've got several books that are rather easy or light reading, so I wouldn't object to something thicker/more challenging - though I do tend not to like books that are really depressing, or at least end on a really depressing note, as much. 

And, of course if you do happen to know of an essential fantasy or scifi book that I might be missing out on... there's always room for one more. ;D
imbecamiel: (Default)
 Ahhh, much as I enjoy vacations, it is good to be home. 

Had lots of fun this last week. Did a bunch of shopping, mostly at thrift stores. Found some really nice, long skirts, a few shirts - got new green and yellow ones. For some reason, I can have any other color shirt I want, but if I get a nice green or yellow one, it gets stained. Herm. Here's hoping these are presentable a little longer than others have been. *g* 

I got a bunch of new sketch pads, and some new pencils too. There's one craft store there... well, suffice it to say, I got four good new sketch books - including one large one - for about the price I'd normally expect to pay for maybe one or two of them, depending on where I got them. Hehe, and I needed the new ones, too - I've just got one page left in my current sketch book. Apparently I am becoming more prolific. I don't think it was really smaller than the ones I've been using, but where it typically takes me right about a year to fill one completely, this one took me just over six months, I believe. And I was doing several sketches to a page much more often than I have in the past. o.o 

Also got a fun-looking new Star Trek novel (99 cents - why not?). *wistful sigh* It is so much fun to look through books at thrift stores, greeting all the old friends, finding new, interesting ones.... Unfortunately, it always gives me the urge to go and buy them all, which, yeah, doesn't work so well. You know what I'd really like to be? A bibliopath. (Yeah, noooo idea of that even resembles correct linguistics - I'm tired, mmkay?) But - you know, a telepath can read/sense others' thoughts? And empaths sense feelings? Yeah, I wish I could just pick up a book and get a feel for it. Not instantly read it, or know the plot, or anything like that - that would take all the fun away. But to be able to get a sense for what sort of book it is, and just.... Ahem. Anyhow. Yeah, had fun, still managed to restrain myself. ;)

AND - I found a two-disk special edition DVD set of "Search for Spock". In practically new condition. For four dollars. *dies*

Speaking of Star Trek, y'know what's awesome? When it's on TV all day. *geeky bliss* Yeeeah, I don't have that many opportunities to watch anything besides the Original Series, so this trip is always my time to catch some episodes of the various series. (I have decided that I like Star Trek Enterprise. *nods* Tucker may be one of my favorite characters in it. The fact that he was Michael in SGA - such a nasssty villain - and seems like such a sweet guy in this adds to the fun. ;D) 

And with all the geeky wonderfulness, sci-fi has begun to really invade my dreams, more than usual. I don't mean just the occasional random appearance by Picard or Ronon - though there were those, yes. *g* But also, hmmm, one in particular with a whole world, various races, snatches of intriguing plot, which had me hurrying to write down notes as soon as I woke up, 'cause it actually still made sense then. And sketching. *pats cuuute little bat-dragons* I think I may have to post a few little sketches tomorrow, when I can get them scanned in. ^.^

Also, it is snowing like crazy right now. And it's actually accumulating, too. 

I love Minnesota. My state is insane. :D

(So am I. I should get some sleep now. That ought to help at least a little.)

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