Friday, March 29, 2013

New and improved

My bank just new and improved their online banking site. Now I have no idea what is in my checking account at any given time.

New and improved my ass.

Why do companies try to fix something that is not broken and make it worse?

Monday, March 25, 2013

Real men

I love this so much it makes me want to cry. Had to share. It's only 53 seconds long and it is awesome.

Friday, March 22, 2013

Who's afraid of the big bad edge?

Many moons ago I was headed up the side of a mountain in the Jemez mountains in New Mexico towards a hot spring; several hot springs actually. You climb up the mountain and you are rewarded with several springs going down the other side of the mountain to choose from.

There’s an obstacle, though, of course, at least for me.

You have to cross the Rio Grande.

At this particular spot the Rio Grande is not really grand but still…

Anywho there is a handy-dandy, fallen-tree bridge to walk across. Not a small tree, either. It’s at least 5 feet wide all the way across. Easy peasy, right? Just walk across that sucker.

Not so fast. Not me, anyway. Despite the fact that everyone else is walking across with no problem, yours truly can not do it. Eventually I crawled. And even then I was so stressed out that … drumroll… I fell in.

I fell in the Rio Grande and had to walk across on slippery rocks.

That walk across the slippery rocks, after being soaked from the fall, was still less stressful for me than trying to walk across that tree.

I have a fear that I just recently identified – FEAR OF EDGES.

M. J. Rose talked about this fear in The Book of Lost Fragrances. I felt like I had come home.

Now I want to know the name of this very real, very rare phobia. I keep finding it referred to but not named.

It’s not the fear of heights. I can look down from the tallest of heights as long as there is a nice, sturdy rail to break up the edge.

That particular night I got across the Rio and up the mountain and spent a pleasant night sitting in the various hot springs.

Of course then I had to battle the tree-bridge again on the way back down.

Do you have a phobia? Phobias? Does your phobia/s affect your daily life?

Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Sort of present

I'm back - kind of. I'll try to write a regular post on Friday.

Lots of stuff going on. One sick Aunt. Curtain making. Addicted to a book series - Rock Chick. Work shake up that ended up not affecting me.

Feeling better though!

Can't say I'll be the web presence I was immediately - but eventually.

Monday, March 11, 2013

Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Romance Intrigue Novel: The Book Of Lost Fragrances by Author: M.J. Rose

The complex scent of Rose

Wow where to start to talk about this amazing book that I loved; The Book Of Lost Fragrances by M.J. Rose

It has a complicated, twisty-turny, back and forth in time plot which all resolves seamlessly; a credit to M. J. Rose’s ability to craft a story.

It has lovable, wounded, flawed characters.

It brings you into other worlds and gives you a realistic-seeming taste of them. For instance, I was vaguely aware that Paris, France has catacombs underneath. This book made them real for me.

It’s another book that has elements I would not choose in a book and yet I thoroughly enjoyed reading it.

There is reincarnation and past life regression stuff. The Dalai Lama has a side-character role. There is Zen Buddhism. That’s a lot for my atheist mind to overlook. Yet I had no trouble doing so. None of those things pulled me out of Rose’s story.

It also has an element that I love, love, love; the world of fragrance, aromatherapy, scent. And part of that is in France where aromatherapy is real, serious medicine like acupuncture in Japan or ayurveda in India.

While attending school to become a Holistic Healthcare Practitioner, a term that only has meaning in California, I studied aromatherapy under Francoise Rapp*. Francoise is descended from what would be the equivalent of doctors in the aromatherapy field in France.

I found that world fascinating. I did not find a door into it that led any farther than a short visit for me, but, I would love to someday immerse myself in that world.

And for now I can do it in this book.
Perfumer's Organ

The book speaks of fragrance in the sense of perfumes; both perfumes custom-made to suit the individual; a company that mass-markets fictional perfumes with names like Rouge and Noir; and medicinal perfumes.

“This was one of the scents from The Game of Impossible Fragrances. In the scent vocabulary that made up her and Robbie’s secret language, this was Fragrance of Loyalty, Jac’s favorite. Adding notes of bergamot to a rich earthy base of oakmoss, she’d come up with a chypre—a type of warm, woody scent first made famous by the legendary perfumer Francois Coty in 1917. Fragrance of Loyalty was neither feminine nor masculine, and could be worn by either brother or sister. And that was as it should be, she said, so they both could use it to signal when something was wrong and they needed help.” The Book of Lost Fragrances by M. J. Rose.

I have to warn my regular readers – this book does not have a HEA, everyone-gets-married, ending. The ending is happy and hopeful but the soul mates, ‘Ames souers’, do not ride off into the sunset together.

I highly recommend that you read this book when you want to be completely drawn into another world. Taken away. Transported.

I also recommend a look at M. J. Rose's other books. They are listed with synposis and excerpts on her beautiful website. Some of my readers, Julie for example, will especially love her books for the past life references alone.

I used to always wear a personalized mix of essential oils. I’ve gotten away from that but I intend to delve back in. I love sweet flower essences like jasmine, rose and honeysuckle. I also love base notes like vetiver and citrus notes like bergamot and woody notes like cedar and eucalyptus and…and…and…

What kind of fragrance or scent do you like? Do you have a favorite essential oil or perfume?

*I could not find an English language website for Francoise but if you put her name in bing you find references to several articles such as this one titled, The Aromatherapy of Love, that list theories and recipes for aromatherapy.

Friday, March 1, 2013

Romance Suspense Novel: Kilt Dead by Author: Kaitlyn Dunnett

How can a contemporary romance lover get some of that hot kilt action?

Liss MacCrimmon books by Kaitlyn Dunnett, that's how.

Okay let me back up a few steps. February was my local library's 'I love to read' month. Sign up. Read. And win prizes. I already won a key chain and a reading light.

But I'm going for the gold. I just finished the last of 15 books so I can win the book bag!

I love my library, btw. It's a big, airy, light-filled building with librarians who love to talk about books.

So, anywho, I 'm randomly cruising the library looking for books and I spy Kilt Dead by Kaitlyn Dunnett. I picked it up because the title is clever. I never figured on reading it because usually the kilt-clad men are in historicals and y'all know I don't have much appetite for historicals.

Imagine my surprise when I find it is a contemporary. Not so much a romance as a mystery book with a little romance thrown in, but still...

Men in kilts. For me. Be still my runaway heart.

Gerard Butler

The hero in the book is never in a kilt but other men are:

"Most people would have kept their eyes on the twenty-eight-pound granite stone Pete held at shoulder height, wondering if it would break the local record of thirty-five feet. Forewarned by the laughter in Sherri's voice, Liss watched Pete's kilt. He spun three times in a circle. Each rotation sent the fabric billowing higher. The final revolution, just before he let go of the stone, lifted the hem above his thighs.
A traditional Scot wasn't supposed to wear anything at all beneath the kilt, but this was an American version of the Highland games and Pete Campbell, though he'd passed on the more usual cut-offs and bicycle shorts, wasn't about to risk arrest for indecent exposure. Swim trunks patterned in fluorescent purple and chartreuese flowers winked at spectators for a split second before the concealing folds of the Campbell tartan settled back to knee level." Kilt Dead by Kaitlyn Dunnett

In Kilt Dead I stumbled upon the first in a series:
2 - Stone Cold Dead
3 - A Wee Christmas Homicide
4 - The Corpse Wore Tartan
5 - Scotched
6 - Bagpipes, Brides and Homicides
7 - Vampires, Bones and Treacle Scones due out July, 2013

This first one is good and the beginning of a romance. Liss MacCrimmon has been touring the world for years as a dancer in a Scottish version of the Irish sensation, Riverdance. She has a career ending knee injury at the same time that her aunt needs her to come and run her business; The Scottish Emporium.

Running her aunt's business leads to a dead body in the stock room.

The mystery is solved in the end and along the way I learned to love Liss MacCrimmon, Dan Ruskin, the town of Moosetookalook, and most of it's inhabitants.

I will be going back for more.

Do you think men in kilts are sexy?

Do you have Scottish blood in you? If so, what clan?

I have Campbell blood in me. There are many Campbell tartans. Not sure which is ours but here is my favorite one: