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July 01, 2014

What I'm reading

Well, hello there! How are you all? I've been a busy bee these past couple of months, and that is just fine. That doesn't mean I didn't have any spare time to relax, but truth to be told, instead of blogging and checking up on my favorite blogs, I felt more like reading, which is what this post is about.


It's been almost exactly 2 months since my first "What I'm reading" post and since then, I've read a few more books, I'm happy to say. The pile on the left in the picture above are the books I read from February till the end of May, and I have finished a few more since then. By the time I took this picture I was reading the one to the right (Deluxe, How Luxury Lost Its Luster), but I gave up on it on page 100; the information about Louis Vuitton and some of the major so-called luxury brands was interesting, but I started feeling grossed out as I kept turning pages. It was certainly not hitting the spot.

The Pact
by Jodi Picoult


I decided to pick up Jodi Picoult's The Pact, which I had read before but never made it to the end. I only skipped the first chapter since I remembered the story and characters quite well. I'm glad I finally read everything single bit of the story, but I highly doubt I'll read one of her books ever again; there's no time for that when there are so many other books in my to-read list! Man, the story was sad and dragged in a way that wasn't enjoyable. The only aspect that I sort of liked was the present/future dynamics; other than that, I have nothing left to say, it was a totally forgettable book to me.

The Rosie Project
by Graeme Simsion


I'm so glad I followed Katrin's advice and checked this one out from my library! In the beginning I found Don Tillman a bit too obnoxious, but he quickly grew on me. He reminded me of an older version of Sheldon Cooper (I can't compare him to anybody else). I truly enjoyed the story and look forward to reading other titles by the author.

The Introvert Advantage - How to Thrive in an Extrovert World
by Marti Olsen Laney


Back to non-fiction. I was undecided whether to buy this one or Quiet, which is a very popular book about the topic. What leaned me towards choosing The Introvert Advantage in the end was the fact that it includes explanations about what chemical processes take place in the brain of an introvert and those involved in an extrovert's brain, which was what I really wanted to know. I read a lot of reviews on Good Reads, a lot of which I feel are not fair at all, but I knew I had to follow my gut and got it anyway. Some people accuse Mrs. Laney of being condescending, but I beg to disagree. It might be because of the fact that English is not my native language, but I just found it easy-to-read and not condescending. Chapter 3 was my absolute favorite and I'm sure I'll be coming back to it in the future. I absolutely recommend it to the introverts out there ;).

The Tipping Point
by Malcolm Gladwell


Another wonderful book I think everybody should read. It simply explains how an idea spreads the same way an epidemic breaks out. The examples are clear and varied; I suppose this book is a must-read to those who study marketing, but not necessarily exclusive to them. I now understand what word of mouth really is and I'm pretty sure I'll be able to put some of the information into practice.

Eats, Shoots & Leaves
by Lynne Truss


If you studied English and/or English translation chances are you have read this book in college. I came across a brand new looking copy in the book sale at the library I work at and couldn't help buying it. I read it for a second time and found it just as funny. Oh, I forgot to mention it's about punctuation, haha. If you're a writer or just a person who freaks out every time an apostrophe is misused, you'll love Eats, Shoot & Leaves.

The Moaning of Life
by Karl Pilkington


You guys. If you're familiar with Ricky Gervais' Show (his podcast) and some of his latest shows, you sure know who Karl Pilkington is and how hilarious he is indeed. He made laugh hard on An Idiot Abroad and I totally loved him as Dougie in Derek; he even does a cameo in the final episode of Extras. The show The Moaning of Life is not available on Netflix yet and if it never is, I'm sure I'll end up getting the DVDs, but for now, I'm happy going through Karl's written rants on marriage, kids and whatnot. 


And while we're at it, let me recommend another show by another member of Ricky Gervais' crew, Stephen Merchant. I honestly think he doesn't add much in the podcast or in An Idiot Abroad, but if you liked him in Extras, you definitely need to check out Hello Ladies. Sadly, there won't be a second season :(, but the material that's out there is really good, Stephen Merchant at its best.  

Everything is Connected
by Keri Smith


Well, I guess this is a bonus, since it's not an actual book, but a compilation of hands-on postcards. It's my very first Keri Smith experience (for a lack of a better word) and I'm thrilled. I can't wait to share the progress made, but I guess it's going to take some time since it also involves other people. I'm terrible at drawing so her other materials intimidated quite a bit, I think Everything is Connected was the best choice for someone like me who likes collaging, is bad at drawing and loves snail mail. More to come on this in the near future :).

So what are you, guys, currently reading?

Anything you can recommend?

Do you ever read reviews on Good Reads or do you try not to be biased by them?

Hope all is great on your end! ;D

Hugs!

June 05, 2014

Well, hello! Hello! It' been ages since I last blogged :/. I've been planning to write a new entry, but I guess life keeps getting in the way, haha. I'll be back soon, though. But for now, you can find me over at Uncustomary where I talked about some of my favorite spots in Southern California. Mind you: you'll see no ocean or cool stores, or Hollywood or any of the typical tourist attractions, because I'm weird like that.



May you all have a wonderful weekend! ;D

Hugs!

May 04, 2014

Where horror movies take place

Not really. But I do seem to have a fascination for weird and creepy places. I've never been much of a beach girl (although I like to know I live not too far from the ocean), but I would have never imagined that the desert hides so many cool little treasures; I'm starting to believe I'm more of a desert creature. Elmer's Bottle Tree Farm is one of the many gold nuggets out there in the wild west.


As we were driving down route 66 towards Oro Grande, the landscape turned eerier and dustier and more intriguing. We spotted abandoned houses, a derelict factory that somehow managed to keep functioning and an empty school bus (on a Saturday evening) driving slowly in our same direction. I pointed out that the place looked like a horror movie and David replied that that was exactly the kind of place where horror movies took place.


Elmer's Bottle Tree Farm is in the middle of nowhere, literally. This is what you see to the left and to the right, and every now and then, far on the back, you get to see long cargo trains.




Lucky us, we made it there before the sun went down, so the colorful bottle trees didn't look scary at all. I imagine it must be a whole different story when it's pitch dark.




If you look closely, you'll find not only bottles, but also a bunch of different objects on top of the bottle trees including guns, which are fully functional!


 And we know this because we heard it from Elmer himself :p. Doesn't he look like the Heisenberg?!
 


He was inside his house when we got there, fireplace on (we could smell the burning log) and he came out to say hi to us right when we were getting ready to head back. I'm really glad we had the chance to exchange a word or two.



He told us he started this project 12 years ago and people from all over the world come visit. He also admitted he wonders who's going to take care of the place once he passes.


The farm itself is not very big, but there are a lot of details and artifacts to see. We were there for well over an hour, exploring and taking photos.















Before leaving, we left a tip and grabbed a stone each.






We tried taking some pictures together, but it was so freaking windy, there's no good one, haha. I forgot to ask Anthony (a friend and photographer who was there with us) if he had better photos of us, but oh well.





 



May you all have a great week!

And if you're ever in SoCal, pay Elmer a visit ;).

Hugs!


Interested in visiting similar places? Then, check out:
Pioneertown, Salvation MountainCalico Ghost Town


April 25, 2014

As seen on Instagram

Hello, hello, hello! Happy Friday, everybody! I may have to work tomorrow, but I honestly do not care. I'm pretty pumped by the fact that we're visiting a very cool place with friends right after work (photos to come). Plus, I have Monday off, so, yay! :p

I meant to drop by the blog earlier this week, but I got sucked up in meetings and a lot of reading. I'm waiting for a new book to get in the mail and 2 other ones to be returned to the library I work at, so I can check them out. I want to keep up the rhythm, since soon I might not be able to read as much when (if) I go back to school :).

So, anyhow, here are some images from Instagram that have caught my eye and I wanted to share with you.

Isn't @milkandsun's kitty and furniture just adorable?   


This picture by @funkytime made me smile big time. If you haven't checked out her blog, what are you waiting for?! It's one of my top 10 favorites. 


I've found some interesting photos over at @thewhigs.




Awe! @pepaloves is right up me alley. I want one of everything!



For Argentinean Game of Thrones lovers, hehe.

 

@mrsbellerlollipopqueen makes the cutest lollipops. 




@thegirllikesrainbows totally does justice to her IG name. And I love this bed she has designed for one of her kids.



Is it weird that I love @mrramano's statue? I think it's amazing. David disagrees.


Yes, please! I need one for the weekend.


Do you have any IG accounts to recommend? ;) If you want to be friends with me there, you can find me here.

Have a wonderful weekend!

Oh, wait! One more thing - if you're not watching Broad City already, you definitely should (on Comedy Central and Hulu Plus). Just saying.