Cozy 2018 Summer

May 11, 2019 at 4:04 am (Art, Reviews) (, , , , , , , , , , )

No, I did not type the date wrong. I took a very long break from consistently reviewing books and blogging, and now I have returned. I’m easing myself back into the practice by logging all the titles my blog missed each Thursday until I am caught up. So welcome to Throwback Thursday (or Flashback Friday, because I’m even warming up to the idea of easing myself in).

Title: A Crafty Killing

Author: Lorraine Bartlett

When I first read this book in June of last year, I uploaded the following review to my Goodreads account:

“Exactly what you’d expect from a cozy. I had a harder time relating to Katie than I have with other leading ladies of the genre, however.”

I gave it 3/5 stars.

That assessment holds true nearly one year later. Katie may not be my favorite, honestly I don’t remember a thing bout her, but Artisan’s Alley and the Victoria Square, are definitely memorable. Ironically, the victim of the crime had a bit of personality too. I do so enjoy getting to know characters “off screen,” so to speak, in everyone else’s memories of them and zero direct contact. I look forward to reading book two when the mood strikes me because I want to see what happens to the business Katie is building. I have a degree in Entrepreneurship, work retail, and wrote The Bookshop Hotel series, so clearly in regard to fictional businesses, I’m biased.

Title: A Dark and Stormy Murder

Author: Julia Buckley

Despite my 2/5 star rating on A Dark and Stormy Murder, I probably enjoyed my reading experience of Buckley’s work more simply because my boyfriend read it to me while I crocheted my daughter’s comforter set. This book was utterly ridiculous, but the voice of the one reading was so marvelous I was thoroughly amused.

Turning my “old lady” vibe up a notch last year, I didn’t stop at reading cozy mysteries, I taught myself to crochet on youtube and am now a full fledged crochet hobbyist. I’ve begun listening to more audiobooks via Scribd, an app/website that I refer to as Netflix for books: https://www.scribd.com/ga/7adrgu

There is something truly amazing about the monotony of crocheting endless rows for the most ridiculously huge blanket ever. I enjoyed every minute of it. Since then, I have also made hats and scarves and am less than 1/4 through another large project and I cannot recommend learning to crochet enough. It has calmed me during a time when I needed to bask in calm and solace. It has added an extra depth to my pursuit of cozy.

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My Art Soothes Me

June 26, 2017 at 12:33 am (Art, In So Many Words) (, , )

17883548_10100212876206789_1026546583218474412_nI used to draw a lot. I found that over the years I have done less and less, and the more I discovered the dark plot points of the marriage I thought was a beautiful work of fate, the more I realize why so much of me began to get buried.

It would resurface, bouts of artistic fancy. And I’m equally strong willed and oblivious, so it’s kinda hard to quash my spirit.  I’m naturally pretty confident and bold despite my anxieties.

Still, I finally know why I wasn’t drawing. Snippets of the comments and criticisms and endless amounts of his self loathing after seeing me working on a piece, I stopped doing it as much, or tried to do it when he wasn’t paying attention. My sketches just became something he would behave bitterly and annoyed about because I could draw and he could not. He’d praise me in front of others then get hopelessly drunk and emotional and yell about how it must be nice to be me and why the hell wasn’t I making any money at it.  Then tell me it was all just copying other things and that I wasn’t an artist anyway.  He said that last bit so often, I’ve even repeated it to others.  I love to draw. I sell pieces now and then, but ultimately, I don’t want my drawings to be something I have to force for pay.  Where career choices are, I’d rather write.  Can’t I keep one thing for myself and not sell out to the worship of the Dollar Bill?

Ultimately, I didn’t even see it as something I wasn’t doing because he was oppressive; it was merely a way I showed my love… not flaunting something that he got so upset about.  Why would you do things that make your best friend feel bad? You don’t. The terrible truth, however, is that he gets so upset over everything.  I cannot be responsible for his emotions, and I’m finally learning – in my thirties – that we can only be responsible for our own behavior, not our spouse’s feelings.

So, back at my parents house, I’ve been building a garden and raising my daughter. I’ve been rediscovering the beautiful embrace of my Heavenly Father’s love, something I’ve been struggling to do since my husband decided that he wasn’t really a believer anymore and decided that Judas Iscariot was actually the ultimate hero of the bible.  And I’ve been revisiting my sketchbook, almost weekly now, instead of yearly.  In it, I am soothed.

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Storyboarding

June 17, 2015 at 9:48 pm (Art) (, , , , , )

Today I am storyboarding for a children’s book for my mother-in-law… we’ll hand the pictures off to a real artist when I’m done.

Photo on 6-17-15 at 3.18 PM

“It was a dark, rainy day.”

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