BOOK REVIEW: The Hourglass Door

Book Review:

THE HOURGLASS DOOR by Lisa Mangum was a well written and intriguing story. I was drawn into the storyline, enjoyed the intricate plot and characters, and appreciated the delicate balance of fantasy, romance, and suspense.

The main characters were realistic. I could appreciate the relationship between Abby and Jason, Abby's fascination with the new guy in town, Dante, and Abby's relationship with her closest friends. The dark characters were incorporated well and I caught myself wondering what the sweet revenge will be like.

I loved the references to Dante, Shakespeare, and Leonardo da Vinci. Lisa presented a unique interpretation of time and time travel. I embraced the imagery of the river and the concept of time. I felt like I was experiencing a great adventure! Lisa drew me into the story, I kept turning pages and hurrying back to the book with anticipation.

I was disappointed when the story ended, just because my adventure was over! I look forward to reading the sequels, as soon as possible, and finding out what happens to Abby, Dante, Zo, and Leo.

 Thank you Lisa Mangum, for a wonderful adventure!

My 2013 Garden Bucket List

Because I'm tired of the cold weather I've started dreaming about sunshine and beautiful gardens. There are many gardens around the world that I would enjoy having the opportunity to visit. Here is the short Bucket List of gardens that I would most like to visit during my lifetime:
  • Butchart Gardens; Vancouver Island, British Columbia
  • Longwood Gardens; Kennett Square, Pennsylvania
  • Thomas Jefferson's Montecello Historic Gardens; Charlottesville, Virginia
  • Chateau de Versailles Garden; Southwest of Paris, France
  • Claude Monet's Garden at Giverny; Normandy, France
  • The Botanical Garden of Padova; Padova, Italy
  • Giusti Gardens; Verona, Italy
  • Boboli Gardens; Florence, Italy
  • Ville d'Este Gardens; Tivoli, Italy
  • Singapore Botanic Garden; Singapore
I have actually visited Montecello, but I was only sixteen at the time. I don't think I fully appreciated the significance of the garden at that young age; I would like to visit again. Even though I recently travelled to Italy, I was not able to visit the famous gardens. It would be wonderful to travel back to Italy with the gardens as a top priority.

Can you think of places that you would love to visit during your lifetime?
Make a list and see how many you can check off!

Substituting in 6th Grade

Yesterday, I was a substitute in a 6th grade classroom for an hour and a half while the teacher left the school for a meeting. I wasn't prepared for how nice the experience would be. The teacher had taught/trained her class so well that, even in her absence, the students were incredibly polite, stayed in their seats (unless they had a specific reason for getting up), conversed with whispers, followed all of my directions, worked independently, and seemed to stay on task. Only a couple of students raised their hands needing help. The one student who got frustrated with the assignment still used a quiet voice and was pretty polite during their private argument with me about the options I suggested. One student wasn't feeling well and checked out of school right before their recess time. Overall the time went pretty smoothly.

I sat at the teacher's desk, totally in awe of the situation as it unfolded before my very eyes. It was a substitutes dream and I was the lucky one to experience it! Before I shout out my volunteer to substitute for this teacher anyday, I realize, what are the chances that this experience will repeat itself? I will probably never have such an easy time again. Come on! These were 6th graders! So I will just file the memory in my brain and bring it out to remember and analyze over and over again.
Awesome teacher? Amazing students? Probably a combination of both!

BOOK REVIEW: Mrs. Miracle

Mrs. Miracle is a pleasant story to read during the holidays. Debbie Macomber did a nice job with the character development and weaving several story lines together. I loved the inclusion of the recipes.

The story was a little too predictable and came to a rushed conclusion with Mrs. Miracle leaving in a hurry, saying goodbye only to the young twins. The message of forgiveness is good, but you can't force someone to feel forgiveness in their heart. I felt that Reba was justified with her anger and hurt feelings, yet Debbie had her cave in to the pressure everyone was putting on her. Reba's sister, and mother, needed to offer up more information, sooner (not waiting four years!)Snapping your fingers and saying "forgive her!" isn't realistic. The swear words and detailed love scenes were unnecessary and served to detract from the story's wholesomeness

Overall I felt compelled to keep reading and enjoyed the story.">View all my reviews</a>