Inspirational Stop Motion

Ran into stop motion videos tonight. Funny where searches end up. Started with government conspiracies to vegan blogs to stop animation. Guess that is why the name of web is so fitting. Anywho I ran into several marvelous stop animation video, but this was as  amazing as it was inspiring. Nice reminder that things may not go according to plan, but the best things never do.

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B2E. Oops. Book reviews.

In case you have stumbled onto my blog, this is a beginning to end (B2E) book summary, not a review. Because I read so many books and soon forget the major details I write a B2E of the book for myself.

Yeah so time has escaped me. I have read nonfiction again, but forgot to publish my personal spin on the fictional books that I read after Good Gracious Green. This is the perfect reason why I want to write about the books in the first place…I FORGET ALL THE DETAILS. Crap.  I will not be able to put much of myself into the following books, but here it is. Next time I will do better.

All Is Bright
by Sarah Pekkanen

Dang, I wish this wasn’t a short story. This short could have been stretched into a full size novel full of back story. I was grabbed by the author right away. It was about Elise Andrews and her recently ended relationship with her childhood sweetheart. She let him walk away because they lacked the spark. She needed more. She finds herself back home, the town where her and Griffin are from, where she runs into his mother, Janice, who invites her over. Elise soon realizes that she misses his family more than she could ever miss him. The spark was with his family. Elise is at Griffin’s family home when the phone rings with an announcement. Griffin is engaged. Elise knows she does not fit in this family anymore, there is no room for her. She gave up Griffin and in turn lost his family. Janice has a unique way of saying goodbye in the grandest of ways with a family heirloom—a blanket that stores love.

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Favorite
by Karen McQuestion

Book Description from Amazon: Sixteen-year-old Angie Favorite’s life so far has been defined by the disappearance of her mother on her eleventh birthday. Since then, she and her older brother Jason have been raised by their grandmother, while their father tours with his rock band. When Angie is attacked by a complete stranger, the crime seems random, until she meets her attacker’s wealthy mother, Lillian Bittner, and discovers nefarious connections between the Bittners and the mother no one has heard from in five years. Told in a unique and compelling voice, Favorite will enthrall readers with its spellbinding tension and emotionally satisfying conclusion.

Although the audience of this book could be young adult, it was a compelling read with many twists and turns. Angie’s Grandma leaves on her planned her honeymoon cruise. Lillian contacts Angie to apologize, Angie wants nothing from Lillian, but in rage decides to call the mother of her attacker. She finds out that her attacker killed himself. Her father leaves for California for a few days for an audition. Being convinced by Jason of possible college scholarships, Angie and Jason head to the mansion to meet Jillian.  While there Angie is befriended by Lillian’s grandson who doesn’t trust Lillian either. Soon Angie and Jason find themselves trapped in the mansion because although Angie is still recovering from her injuries, she adds insult to injury when she twists her ankle while at the estate. So much wealth and power Angie should feel overpowered, but she will stop at nothing to get away from Lillian.  In her quest she finds the meaning to what her assailant was saying to her as she was attacked, “Come with me, I want to show you something.”

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How Michelle Obama Leads
by New Word City

It has been so long, that I have nothing to add…

Book Description from Amazon: First Lady Michelle Obama, the direct descendant of slaves, now lives in a house that was built by slaves. This daughter of a nurturing if demanding family grew up on Chicago’s South Side, where she developed discipline and diligence, two traits that carried her to Princeton and then Harvard Law School. She turned her back on wealth and prestige to follow her idealism into the public sector, where she was immediately successful. A young beauty with many suitors, she finally settled on a man named Barack Obama. Together they formed a formidable team that accomplished the seemingly impossible–electing the first African-American President of the United States. Her fascinating story is an inspiration to the world.

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Killer
by Stephen Carpenter

Really? I am supposed to believe this is Carpenter’s first published book? This was not novice writing.

Book Description from Amazon: Jack is an author and former boxer who was on his way to literary success when his life was blown apart by the horrific suicide of his fiancée. Devastated, Jack went on a fifteen-month alcoholic spiral into near-oblivion before eventually working past his demons to become a best-selling crime novelist. But just as Jack is finishing his fourth book about a vicious serial killer, the LAPD interrupts his quiet routine with news of what appears to be a copycat murder from his first book. There’s just one problem–the murder took place before Jack’s book was published.
Jack begins to investigate, using techniques he learned through his meticulous research with police and FBI investigators. To his horror, Jack discovers that each of the murders he has imagined are all real…down to the most harrowing details. And Jack is Suspect Number One.
Jack winds up on the run, a fugitive haunted by his past and hunted by the very cops and FBI agents he has learned from and befriended. Jack must use every resource he has to prevent the murder of a woman he knows will be next in his series of novels. He must piece together shattered memories from the fragments he recalls during his drunken fifteen-month blackout.
Fast-paced and utterly unpredictable, KILLER reads like a rapid-fire crime thriller, with hairpin twists and turns and edge-of-your seat psychological horror. KILLER eludes easy answers to the impossible puzzle Jack must solve, and takes the reader on a journey unlike any other.

Some of my favorite quotes from the book:

I never understood people who lie to their lawyers or their doctors. What’s the point of lying when the meter’s running and they can never tell?
Do crazy people know it when they start to go crazy?
Can you be called paranoid if people really are after you?

 

Happy Birthday.

Happy birthday to my hubba hubba husman and my pup…the namesake of this blog.

Made a couple of postings in the health blog last night. All night I  dreamed about awareness—like it was my sole responsibility to make all aware and save everyone’s life. Exhausting night. Although research and writing are all I am thinking about now, tonight is about celebration. Better get my party hat on and get ready for our date before company arrives.

B2E Goodness Gracious Green

In case you have stumbled onto my blog, this is a beginning to end (B2E) book summary, not a review. Because I read so many books and soon forget the major details I write a B2E of the book for myself.

Good Gracious Green

Jumping right in. It begins with the main character being harassed in her home on a quiet morning by Big Boys trying to bully her out of her newly acquired newspaper. Add in a dog attack to her face and a fire—the book starts to unravel.

Lois Parker an Ohio native finds herself in Green, Louisiana running small community newspaper, The Green New-Item. This is her second year in Green and has decided to stay. All the sudden small fires are breaking out. The first one appeared to be faulty machinery that catches the pressroom on fire, but other people have their doubts. When a second fire is set at the newspaper all doubts are erased. Lastly her garage is set on fire causing the entire structure to be destroyed. The Big Boys want her paper and want her to leave town, but would they fight that dirty? The answer ended up being yes.

The community of characters covered the entire spectrum from a black, female doctor to the church women who cook potlucks. The characters caused friction from old thinking into new thinking. Something I am not familiar with of small towns. It has an interesting mix. The crush interest was slow-moving, Chris Craig. He had lost his wife to cancer four years earlier so the romance was slow-moving, but ended up in the right place.

At the beginning of every chapter the author gave a small article that had been published in the paper. It was a good way to add more character development of the small town. Making me want to move home…to the small one I haven’t found yet.

I really enjoyed the cast of the book. There a many, many town characters from her lawyer to the Mexican who sells produce. The employees of her newspaper were an ambitious, fun bunch. Although the book kept my attention and was well written it falls shorts of winning my heart. The suspense was lacking, the plot was predictable. The only time I found myself emotional invested was when the Mexican produce seller was wrongfully accused.  Luckily I downloaded the free promotional Kindle version. Guess it was second in a series also. The book read well without reading the first story.

Will the Real Shakespeare Please Stand Up

Okay. This one frustrates me. This podcast’s focus is—did William Shakespeare really wrote 38 plays, 154 sonnets, two long narrative poems, and several other poems. This is a well disputed topic. Shakespeare attended only a few years of grammar school—is it really possible that the greatest writer in the history of the English language barely went to school. His wife and three children were illiterate. William possessed none of the works he wrote when he died. It has been said that the author of the works would have had to had a vast library of literature due to the referencing—William had no such library in his home or in his will.

The frustrating thing for me is that if history is that inaccurate—were do we start? We question the history as we know it, but have no definite answers. History is full of theories with someone to counter the facts arguing truths and making vague statements to cast doubt. Paul Revere was not the rider of the night and no one yelled the British are coming, Tom Edison did not invent the light bulb, yada, yada yada. Even items that are recorded that has no excuse for inaccuracies and should be indisputable are not. Famous movie lines are inaccurate. “Play it again, Sam.” Yeah never said. In Casablanca the real spoken line is “Play it once, Sam, for old times’ sake.” Yeah not even close to the famous movie line. This inaccurate line is in the top of 10 famous movie quotes AND IT IS WRONG…so famously inaccurate. So if we recite history incorrectly when we have a proven in recordings, how can we have faith that the old history is fact.

Makes me question all our ancestry trees. Where do we come from? I could be chasing a line of my heritage that really is not mine. A member of my family my have been lied to and continued to repeat the new truth or purposely lied on the census or adopted or could be “like family.” Argh!

There is only one way to erase the shadow of doubt, get the DeLoren. Marty you ready? I am. Get the car.

20110205_shakespeare_doubts

I am CrazyInsane

In hopes to release and funnel my creativity I am adding another task to my insane world. I started a health and nutrition blog tonight. Ah. This is on top of this blog that I have neglecting. Damn. I also have an offline personal journal as well as a snippet daily that I write in a date book. Oh and another date book that has dreams writings. WTF? Wow. Yes I am crazy. No I just want to leave my mark. Keep a history. The health and nutrition blog is a public blog to help others (well one friend who requested I write a book or a blog). Good luck you crazy, insane woman!

Vittana

While watching Lipstick Jungle on Hulu.com last night an ad for Vittana splashed on the screen. A cause that caught my attention. My college education cost me nearly $50,000. My husband’s cost closer to $100,000. In countries less fortunate than ours, tuition can cost less than $500. Whoa! My education or an educations for at least 500 students from less than perfect countries. These countries do not have student loans programs. If the money is not available they are out of luck. But armed with the college degree they are likely to earn 3-6 times more money that they now do.

Our mission statement

Our mission is to help young people around the world get access to higher education for the first time.

The problem
When it comes to education, traditional aid and development have always been about literacy and primary school. Today, because of these and other efforts, an entire generation of young people is finishing basic education and hoping to do more.

However, because no one’s thought about higher education, these amazing, inspiring young adults are being led off a cliff. Despite the enormous investments of time and aid money so far, they’re ending up stuck in the same place as their parents. It’s hard to believe, but in most developing countries, loans for college or vocational school simply don’t exist.

Our idea

We see this as the “last mile” of education: if you can get someone just $700 more and keep them in school for just 6-12 months more, you can instantly make good on the previous 18 years of investment. If that sounds too good to be true, consider an American analogy: a high school graduate might make $8/hour but a vocationally-educated electrician might earn $33/hour. Vittana graduates earn 200-300% of their previous income — that is, about $18/day vs. $6/day.

Vittana builds some of the world’s first college loan programs in developing countries. You can imagine how hard this is: no IRS, no credit bureaus, no school accreditation. Over the last two years, we’ve developed the beginnings of a strong model to bring student loans to developing countries. We are good at what we do: Vittana students have a 95% success and repayment rate on their loans.

Students from those programs appear here on vittana.org, where they’re able to get a loan from people like you around the world. We’re not talking $30K or $50K per year — as of June 2010, the average total Vittana loan request was for $655.11. A $25 or $50 loan to a Vittana student can make a tremendous change in that young man or woman’s life.

This can once and for all completely break the cycle of poverty in a family. Consider not only how a Vittana graduate’s life changes, but also consider everyone else around them. Imagine how different the default life trajectory is for the daughter of someone selling trinkets for a living vs. the daughter of a college-educated nurse.

Pretty amazing stuff. I will be checking into this cause. Looks like a wonderful place to help others who don’t have the means.