>The final lot of finished goals for my second 101 in 1001 project

>I’ve blogged the majority of my 101 in 1001 achievements this time round.  These are the ones I’ve done but not blogged about.

40) Make more time for crafts

I’ve just started doing that in the past couple of weeks, mostly with knitting.  I am very much enjoying and hankering to get some other crafts out soon, probably scrapbooking.  But I must find some space first.  I need to work more on this but I’m calling it done.

41) Drink more water

That’s been done for a while, I generally drink a lot of water now.  It’s just boring to blog about!

49) Find out from mum exactly how much stuff she has of mine from pre uni, get it back and sort it out

Stalemate.  Whenever we’ve discussed this we’ve come to the point where I am convinced there is some of my stuff in my parents house but they don’t know where it is and think there can’t be.  We may never know for definite. Calling it done.

51) Have a go at weaving

I bought a cheapy childs weaving loom.  My attempts at weaving were a bit of a failure if I’m honest but I shall try again at some point.  I suspect half the problem is that lately all my craft time is in front of the tv or while listening to audiobooks/podcasts.  I need to concentrate on just it to start with me thinks.

53) Stop stressing about finances so much

I made a plan a few months ago and I’m slowly working my way through it.  It’s been delayed due to circumstances beyond my control (and which I really ought to chase) but I am worrying less, even if I could  still be managing a little better

55) At the end of the 1001 days donate £1 for every goal not met to charity

Realistically it wouldn’t be a great idea for me to make a big donation to charity right now.  But I donated a very large amount (the most I’ve ever done) to Bliss via my sister’s sponsorship for running the marathon earlier this year. So I’ll call that done but if I do find a spare tenner sometime soon I may well make a donation to LLTGL

56) at the end of the 1001 days treat myself to something special. Budget – the number of goals met x £2 each

OK so I’ve had it for a while and it cost way more than the budget set in this goal BUT I had this in mind when I bought my iPad in July.

79) Make more of an effort to recycle.

Yup. Doing that.  Thought I’d marked it off ages ago actually.

82) make more of an effort to actually walk

Slow progress on that one and more work needed but ever since I had the serial casting this summer I am trying to walk more

84) Lose some weight

Done but not very well.  I’m still a fair way down from my highest weight but a good chunk up from my most recent lowest weight (if that makes sense). A work in progress.

86) paint my nails more often

Yup. I quite often paint them now and I hardly ever used to (in recent years).  I have treated myself to several new ones in pretty colours and even have a spectacular green stain where I spilt the majority of a brand new bottle on the hall floor last week.  Plus, I am having loads of fun with the bottle of nail effects I bought a couple of weeks ago.

88) Write about my school days.

Another work in progress.  I’ve written quite a lot but I’ve not reached a point where I consider it finished or decided what I want to do with it (if anything) other than I don’t think I want to use it for this blog.  Harder than I expected.

98) Remember and mark people’s birthdays

I am doing much better at that and I have to say I like it.  Facebook is obviously a big help there but it’s not just that.

100) Research family history/genealogy

Made a start and found it really interesting.  Definitely want to do more but I think I need to find a bit more about the how to do it before trying again as I tied myself in knots a little and think I may have found the wrong person for my great grandfather.

101) on day 1001 publish a new 101 in 1001 list

Well, today is day 1001 and I’m putting the finishing touches to the new list.  It’ll be up tomorrow.

>An Autumn Crush by Milly Johnson

>Simon and Schuster sent me a pre-release copy of An Autumn Crush by Milly Johnson to review. It’s being released on 29th September and will be available as both a book and an ebook.

Here’s what Amazon has to say about it:

After a bruising divorce, headstrong Juliet Miller invests in a flat and advertises for a flatmate, little believing that in her mid-thirties she’ll find anyone suitable. But along comes self-employed copywriter Floz, raw from her own relationship split, and the two woman hit it off. When Juliet’s twin brother Guy meets Floz, he is overcome with a massive crush. But being a shy, gentle giant, he communicates so clumsily with her as to give her the opposite impression. Guy’s best friend Steve has always had a secret, unrequited crush on Juliet. After a night of too much wine, Steve and Juliet end up in bed, after moaning about the lack of sex in their lives. Convinced that Juliet doesn’t feel the same way, Steve agrees to a ‘just-sex’ relationship, until they can both hook their dream partners. Just when Guy has finally plucked up the courage to tell Floz how he feels, he finds she has rekindled an old romance. Floz has never had much love in her life and is obviously thirsty for affection. She loves the whole Miller family, from Juliet and Guy’s warm, loving parents, to their ancient one-eyed black cat. But can Guy turn Floz’s affection for his family into something more – into love for him? Then Juliet makes a series of discoveries which will turn the lives of all four friends upside-down and turns that Autumn into a season where love can be harvested.

I have just spent a very enjoyable afternoon reading this. This was the perfect book to spend a dreary September afternoon snuggled under the duvet reading. The sound of the pouring rain providing a backdrop and adding to the atmosphere.
This book is definitely worth looking out for.

I must admit when I selected this off my shelf last night I was looking for pure unadulterated escapism. The sort that only chick lit can provide. This book did provide the perfect escape but it was more than that. The plot follows the same basic premise of single girl looking for romance that most chick lit does. But it takes it further. It has twists you don’t expect and even when I knew a secret was about to be revealed I couldn’t figure it out.

A couple of unusual topics are covered but this is done sensitively and very well. A theme of friendship pervades the entire book, showcasing that these characters are friends before they are anything else. I really liked that, particularly the friendship between Guy and Steve neither of whom are the stereotypical flawless male hero. These characters could easily be your friends.

A very lovely book.

>You Know You’ve Got CP When…

>A good friend says to you in all seriousness

“Don’t take this the wrong way but your legs look almost normal now.”

That’s definitely the sort of thing that only a crip can say to another crip! Love it.

Apart from the idea of “normal” that is, who’d want to be normal? Not me!

>Monday Music – Space Rabbits of Brocklevoon

>Myself and two friends went to see The Spooky Men’s Chorale recently. They were supported by Kate Rowe. And as soon as I heard her Space Rabbits of Brocklevoon song I knew it had to be a Monday Music on my blog.

Why? Spoons. The whole song is based around spoon stealing.

You could tell the audience liked it. But with two of the three of us using The Spoon Theory in our own lives sometimes and the third knowing of it. Lots and lots and lots of laughter. It was such a brilliant coincidence and a bit of an inside joke type because it had unique to us meaning. I know people who frequently tweet asking who stole their spoons. Me thinks they’ll now know the answer!!

In the interval, Kate Rowe was in the foyer. I made sure to go over and ask her where the idea for spoons came from. It was quite interesting hearing her talk about it and basically it was a random joke.

She hadn’t heard of The Spoon Theory. She has now.

On the whole it was a brilliant night. That made it better.

>Goals for the week

>It’s been a bit of a crap week and I’ve been feeling down at times, missing my meds and feeling a bit ill on and off. I do think there’s been a bit of a virus going around as a couple of other local people have complained of nausea too.

Anyway although I’m slowly pulling it back together now and have an actual proper achievement to show for today – I went back to a very badly stalled project and have got it moving again. I thought it would be good to set a few goals.

1. Take my sertraline daily.
2. Take my baclofen at least once a day (will worry about consistently taking the second dose next week, getting some in is a better goal now)
3. Work on the above mentioned project daily.
4. 1 hour total in the standing frame.
5. Watch The Lord of The Rings
6. Send emails I’ve been procrastinating about

>The Sandalwood Tree by Elle Newmark #fridayreads #amreading #transworldreadinggroup

>I’m taking part in Transworld’s Reading Group. As a part of that I received a copy of
The Sandalwood Tree by Elle Newmark
to review.

Here’s what Amazon has to say about it It is 1947, and Evie and Martin Mitchell have just arrived in the Indian village of Masoorla with their five-year-old son. But cracks soon appear in their marriage as Evie struggles to adapt to her new life, and Martin fails to bury unbearable wartime memories.

When Evie finds a collection of letters, concealed deep in the brickwork of their rented bungalow, so begins an investigation that consumes her, allowing her to escape to another world, a hundred years earlier, and to the extraordinary friendship of two very different young women.

And as Evie’s fascination with her Victorian discoveries deepens, she unearths powerful secrets. But at what cost to her present, already fragile existence?

I loved this book. Absolutely loved it. If I’d have written the review as soon as I finished it it basically would have consisted of “you have to read this book. Buy it. Buy it now.”. You may have seen my tweet about that.

Why did I love it? It had brilliantly written characters, amazing scenes and a great atmosphere. The colour, sounds and other things that made up life in India in both the time periods described jump off the page and really make you feel like you’re there. I found I really came to care about the characters and as Evie was discovering the Victorian girls’ secrets I wanted to tell her to hurry up, I needed to know what was happening to them and couldn’t wait. I would really love to read more about these characters, especially Felicity and Adela.

I found this book hard to put down. When I start a new book I like to read the first 50 pages. Not always in one go but that’s my goal I think if after 50 pages I’m not into it I’m not likely to like it. I started reading this when I had an hour or so before needing to start making dinner which I figured meant I’d read roughly 50 pages ( unless a book has really long chapters, I like to stop at the end of one). I think I’d read something like 140 pages before hunger forced my hand. Needless to say it was a very late dinner that night!

The book has a brilliant ending – it ties up all the threads and you know how things will go but you don’t know the details of how, what, and where. I like that. I was left wanting to know what came next in the story of Evie and her family. Knowing that the part of their story in the book is over and being able to make my own mind up about how it continues is something I like as a reader. I don’t find many books with characters that do that to me.

I can’t recommend this book highly enough. It’s one of the best books I’ve read in a long time.

>Living With The Dead Trilogy (books 2 & 3) by Jesse Petersen

Simon & Schuster kindly sent me copies of Flip This Zombie and Eat Slay Love by Jesse Petersen to review. They are books 2 and 3 of her Living With The Dead trilogy. I’ve not read book 1 but it’s called Married With Zombies if anyone wants to know. And I saw on Amazon that there is also a book of short stories set in the same universe.

Here’s what Amazon has to say about Flip This Zombie

Ever felt like your office colleagues might actually be zombies? Call ZombieBusters Extermination!

The Zombie Apocalypse has been good to Sarah and David. Their marriage is better than ever. They communicate well, share responsibilities, and they’ve also started a business. ZombieBusters – for all your zombie extermination needs. There are lots of zombies and that means lots of customers…Except one of them doesn’t want the zombies dead, he wants them alive and ready for experimentation. Mad scientists make for difficult clients and, this time, Sarah and David might have bitten off more than they can chew.

I won’t share the synopsis for Eat Slay Love as it contains a spoiler.

These were my first ever zombie books. I have never even been tempted to pick one up before let alone read one. So I really wasn’t sure what to think or even what to expect when I opened the parcel in the doctors waiting room (the postman stopped me on my way there and went “got some books for you that won’t fit through your letterbox.” Exceedingly good service that). Surprise parcels of books should always be provided to help make the long wait at the doctors bearable I think. Also screaming mothers moaning at their kids should be banned from all public places but especially the doctors for the same reason. In fact I’d prolly prefer that to the books idea and given how much I love to read you get how annoying they are to me. Oh and as a final off topic aside? The screaming mothers who go “see that lady in the wheelchair? See her? She’ll run you over if you don’t stop [whatever they were doing, usually just being a kid]” need a smack. Or perhaps I’ll just run them over seeing as it’s obviously acceptable in their world.

These were quite a fun read. Perfect reading for when you want to switch off completely. Full of humour they literally made me LOL a few times. They seemed very hip and very now – full of references to recent famous people etc. I didn’t understand one or two of the references because they were American but there was enough there that for example I knew they were talking about money just not how much.

I thought the covers of these books were totally perfect for them, bright with a very chick lit feel which makes them stand out. I’d not read zombie books before because I hate horror and assumed zombie books had to be full of gore and gruesomeness. There was obviously some gore but the main focus was on the characters and their relationships. Basically these are chick lit – with zombies. I’d say these are a good place to start if you’re not sure if the zombie thing is for you.

As things stand this is a trilogy but I wouldn’t be at all surprised if there are more books in the future. There’s definitely scope in the way Eat Slay Love (that title cracks me up) ends.

These are worth a try if you want to switch off and have a laugh. I was surprised how much I liked them.