Thursday, March 25, 2010

Jodi Picoult

I love to read. I love, love, love, love, LOVE to read! I was one of those kids who always had her nose in a book. I read on the bus (and missed my stop once, that was pretty scary to look up and realize my siblings had gotten off and there was nobody else left on the bus!), at night when I was supposed to be sleeping, and really anywhere else a book can go. I love to get lost in a book. On days off, I can easily go through a book in a day. This is one reason why I love having a Kindle. I've had to buy books while on vacation before since I've run out. I've also been overweight on airline luggage because of books. Now that I'm so busy with work, I don't get to read as much as I used to, but I still love to read.

I love a variety of books. Chick Lit is my favorite for when I want to laugh and not think too much while reading. It's kind of like eating a bowl of ice cream when you've had a bad day. Sometimes I want something more substantial than Chick Lit.

Jodi Picoult is one of my favorite authors for when I want a book to really make me think about the world. The first book I ever read of hers was My Sister's Keeper. I highly recommend this book to anyone who can handle reading about cancer and wants to try Jodi Picoult. This is probably my all time favorite book of hers, even though I don't think I could handle reading it now. My Sister's Keeper is about a 13-year-old girl who is suing her parents for emancipation. She was born to save her sister, who was dying of leukemia, when no other family members were a bone marrow match and no longer wants to be subjected to painful surgeries and procedures. The ending is typical Jodi Picoult. She gives an ending that is true to how life often works, even if it's not what you'd expect. She isn't afraid to shy away from "Hollywood endings" and I admire her for that.

Some other books of Jodi's that are my favorite are: Nineteen Minutes, The Pact, Handle With Care, and Plain Truth.

There are, however, two things I don't like about Jodi Picoult's books. One thing is that she often uses supernatural events in her stories and I sometimes find it to be distracting from the main point of the story (an example being Second Chance). The other thing is that she's with a publisher that wants to delay the release of the Kindle version until about 4 months after the hardcover (although I did see a Tweet from her that maybe it'll come in April?). She's usually an author I buy in hardcover, but I have made the decision to wait until the books is available in Kindle. She has stated repeatedly that it's not her choice and she is 100% opposed to her publisher's decision. She said she feels it punishes some of her most dedicated fans, but the decision was applied retroactively and the book was already under contract. Boo, Simon and Schuster!

Wednesday, March 17, 2010

St. Patrick's Day!

I'm a proud Irish American and I love St. Patrick's Day. I like to take the time to remember my heritage and usually make it a point to learn more about Ireland as well. I know I should do this all year round, but I like the reminder of this day.

I don't like corned beef and cabbage, and that's more of an Irish American tradition anyway, so I usually make an Irish stew and buy some Irish soda bread to eat for dinner. Yum!

I also don't like to wear green clothes. I don't think it's the best color on me, so I don't tend to wear it, so I never really wear anything green on St. Patrick's Day. If anyone tries to pinch me, I tell them I'm almost 100% Irish and the green is in my blood. I also have a claddagh tattoo, wear a claddagh ring ever day, and make a point to wear some of my emerald jewelry, so I do have a bit of green on.

This year I decided to do my nails and eye shadow for St. Patrick's Day. The nails are Emerald Sparkle by China Glaze. I love this color! This is from the Wizard of Ooohaaahs Returns collection, which was out around Christmas time. I actually wore this with Ruby Pumps for my Christmas manicure. This is the perfect emerald green color and the glitter is perfection.

Excuse the dulled eye shadow and creasing. I took this picture at about 6pm when I did my makeup at about 7am. This should still give you an idea of the look I did. I wore MAC's Lucky Green on my lid, MAC's Sumptuous Olive in my crease, then a nude color from my Smashbox palette along the brow bone. I lined my eyes with a gold eye liner from my Smashbox palette as well. I had fun with it and it was wearable for work!

Sunday, March 14, 2010

Legal Seafoods Clam Chowder

In my world, there is no such thing as red clam chowder. Nope, no way, no how. I'm a New Englander and my chowdah has to be white.

The best clam chowder has to be from Legal Seafoods. There are places that have delicious clam chowder (the Mattapoisett Chowder House in Mattapoisett, MA has great clam chowder), but nothing compares to the perfection that is the clam chowder from Legal Seafoods. Usually, I get shrimp cocktail as an appetizer when I eat seafood. Not at Legal Seafoods.

What makes this chowder so special? Well, I have the Legal Seafoods cookbook, but haven't had a chance to try the chowder recipe, although I'm sure they left something out as those places do, so it doesn't taste quite the same. This is a rich, thick chowder that is the perfect thickness. They have just the right amount of potatoes and clams in it so each bite has clammy goodness. If you love seafood and haven't tried Legal Seafoods clam chowder, I highly recommend you do! This has been served at every Presidential inauguration since1981 . You can even order it online at their website.