Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Easy DIY Bird Feeder

Many of you may be like me and not have a garage at your house.  Between that and the lack of trees in certain areas of my neighborhood, I have discovered that birds REALLY love to use my car as a perch.  Has you can image, it's completely covered in bird poop now!  In an effort to redirect them to other places, I've been looking into putting up bird feeders and other perch locations around my yard.  This is a really easy one. 
Things you'll need:
  1. 2 liter plastic bottle
  2. wooden spoons: 2 or 3
  3. power drill and bits OR utility knife/craft knife
  4. screw in hook
  5. string
Total cost: $2, I got a cheap cent bottle of soda and a 3 pack of spoon for right around $2.  I already owned a drill, drill bits and a screw in hook.

Remove the label of the bottle.  Figure out where you would like to place you're wooden spoons. I staggered mine by size, shortest closer to the top, and 'facing' different directions.  Use your drill (if you're lazy, like me) or the utility knife to create 2 holes for each spoon.  One the size of the handle to hold your 'perch' in place and one larger one that allows the bird seed to fall into the spoon head, an oval shape works best.

Saturday, March 26, 2016

Spider Game by Christine Feehan

I am a huge fan of the author Christine Feehan.  Her latest book is actually from my absolute favorite series of hers:  The Ghostwalker series.

Spider Game is the 12th novel in this series and it ended up being pretty great.  I was actually a little surprised by how much I liked it.  I saw this, after expressing my love for this series, because I'm been getting a little frustrated with Ms. Feehan for constantly throwing new male characters at us without completing the love matches for the original male characters.

If you're not familiar with the series let me start at the beginning.  Shadow Game is the first book and presents us with a special ops military team that has voluntarily undergone experimentation to be psychically enhanced.  They're being confined in a research facility, slowly being picked off by a group that's trying to sabotage the original experiment.  These are romance novels so, of course, the female lead works in the facility and ends up saving them.  It ends up that the savior female is part of secret experiments that the main researcher, Dr. Whitney, did on orphaned girls he bought from third world counties.  They were his first experiments, which eventually lead to the military experiments and since he did round one in secret, and had way to much money and power, he could brutalize the girls all he wanted. 

There are between 8 to 12 team members on the first team, but by book 3, Conspiracy Game, Ms. Feehan is already introducing a male lead from team two, who was experimented on at different location.  And then later in book 8, Street Game, and in book 11, Viper Game, two other teams are introduced that were also experimented on.  The fact that some of the other teams were mentioned fairly early on in the series didn't mean I wanted to read their stories before she was done with the men from team one. 

With all this in my head going into this book, I actually liked Cayenne and Trap more than I was expecting too.  I'll admit I sort of dreaded the spider thing, I mean seriously, how can you make any part of spiders sound appealing?!?  But it was.  Cayenne is a believable character, even with all her scars and violent past.  She actually has one of the worst back stories of all the female characters, but her interactions with other people and reactions to being around too many people was very believable.  And the sex is always good too.  This one turned out to be an excellent read.  I still think Murder Game and Samuai Game are the best ones in the series though (men are from team one)! 

Wednesday, March 23, 2016

Make Your Own Wine Bottle Lights

I love to craft!  My latest endeavors have been with glass bottles, mostly wine bottles.  My latest one is drilling a hole in the base of a bottle to get lights inside it.  Once you have the correct tools, it is very simple.  Here's how it's done.
You will need:
  1. A bottle of your choice (I found fun colored bottled at a consignment store for a few dollars).
  2. A power drill
  3. A diamond tip, hole drill bit.  This costs about $18 at a hardware store, look in the drill bit section.
  4. Lights, I prefer battery operated lights so you're not restricted to being near an outlet to plug in Christmas lights.
Total cost of craft: $25 for the first one, now that I have the bit and get friends to give me their wine bottles the average cost is around $3-5 for the battery operated lights.
Fill a bin or your kitchen sink with water so that the bottle is covered.  This stops the glass from getting to hot and cracking while you're drilling.  Then it's just a matter of drilling a hole through the bottle at your chosen location.  It does take a little practice to hold things right, because the bottle is curved and your bit head won't want to stay in the same place until you've made a groove or indent in the glass.  I've found that I can steady the bottle with my left hand, tucking the drill head (above the spinning part) against the 'L' curve works best.  If you can't steady it this way you may need to create a way to hold the drill head in place, a 'stencil' if you will.  A few minutes of drilling and you're done.  Fish the drilled out glass out of the bottle and dry it.  Feed the light string into the hole.  If it's going to be an outdoor light, I suggest getting a cork or 'lid' so that bugs won't get into the bottle.

You now have a beautiful center piece or outdoor table light.

Saturday, March 19, 2016

Author Recommendation: S. E. Smith

Are you a fan of science fiction romance novels?  Than I have an author for you.  I came across her due to my Amazon account about a year ago and now, I can't get enough of her stuff.  She has multiple series and every one that I've read is really good!

I recently received a free copy of Gracie's Touch, the first book in the Zion Warriors series.  This novels starts through the eyes of seventeen year old Gracie, who has grown up on an Earth that was invaded by aliens years ago.  She is a member of the resistance, using her computer hacking skills to their advantage.  When she discovers a way to negate the alien technology she must go into space and enter their mother ship.  In her attempt to flee the mother ship before it explodes (in an similar to Independent Day movie scenario), she is flung into the unknown.  Years later when she is finally rescued from where she has crash landed, she finds that she's been catapulted forward in time.

S. E. Smith has a way of entwining her plots with aliens, fun new technology, other species and a lot more in a way that is believable and hard to put down.  Discovering what happened on Earth after Gracie saved the day, how she would impact the current interplanetary system with her knowledge of the aliens that have reappeared and still find her happily ever after was exciting.  I couldn't put this book down and immediately went online to find out when the next book came out (discovered it was already out, and immediately purchased Krac's Firebrand, book two).

Abducting Abby: Dragon Lords of ValdierI have also read numerous other series by S. E. Smith, which I would highly recommend as well.  Some of them are: The Lords of Kassis, Cosmos' Gateway, Dragon Lords of Valdier, The Alliance, and plenty more.  The Dragon Lords of Valdier series is a particular favorite of mine because I love dragon stories and this particular series does have 'off-shoot' series such as the Curizan Warrior and the Sarafin Warriors, which all are a part of the same world and come back into each other.  Some of the differences between these series and the Zion Warriors series is that a number of these books overlap and take place at the same time, where you have a different couple and perspective around the same time.  There are even short stories involving the kids of the original couples.  It's really great!

If you are a fan of strong, independent woman, men who are a combination of possessive, protective and caring, and science fiction romance than you are going to love this author!

Wednesday, March 16, 2016

Have you ever done this?

Have you ever seen something online or on pinterest or wherever and said to yourself...I can do that!

If you're like me than you've done this a lot!  And then all of a sudden, what have you gotten yourself into?!? Here's my current dilemma:
Over window shelf/curtain rod:

I saw this on pinterest.  Great idea, right?  All it takes is a board, two 2 brackets, a rod and, for me at least, 2 decorative ends to stop the bar from sliding around.  What this very lovely picture doesn't tell you is that...
  1. You have to make sure you purchase your board at home depot or a place that will cut it for you, unless you happen to have the tools to cut an 8 foot board at home, which I don't
  2. You have to find a rod that's not a closet bar because those are much heavier and too thick
  3. You have to find 2 shelf brackets that you love and cut a hole through them in EXACTLY the same spot on both so that your bar won't be cat-e-wonky when you hang it
  4. And, oh, you have to prime it, paint it, than double coat it and if it's rainy season this takes a looooooong time.  
    • Because, yes, you have a life and are busy on most weekends and are trying to sneak in a coat here and there between everything else!
    • And guess what?  It's much more difficult to paint a rod than you would expect, cause it's round and the wind tends to blow it around and then you end up with grass and leaves stuck in the paint!
 I started this project months ago, literally months, and here's where I'm at now:

Looks like I'm good to start assembling, right?  But, no, I have to finish one more coat of paint to cover the primer.  And then what?  You can see that it's a really long shelf, my intention is that it'll replace the vertical blinds on the sliding door.  How am I supposed to install this myself? I have not figure that out yet!

Saturday, March 12, 2016

It's Finally Here!: Fire Touched by Patricia Briggs

Fire Touched by Patricia Briggs

 I love Patricia Briggs' series soooo much!  I have waited with baited breathe for her latest release, the 9th book in the Mercy Thompson series, and now it's here!

She has done a fabulous job of bringing to life a world where the Fae, or magical creatures like gnomes, trolls, creatures worshipped as the dieties, etc, have been ‘out’ and a part of the world for a long time.  They have reservations that are similar to Native American reservation.  Werewolves have been around for a long time but only ‘came out’ to the public a few years.  Other magical creatures such as Native American shifters, vampires, witches and more make appearances frequently but are technically still ‘in hiding’ from the public.  

Considering all the chaos, craziness, magic and political issues that abound when fictional creatures aren’t so fictional anymore, you still get sucked into the lives of Mercedes Thompson, the Mercedes mechanic and Native American coyote shifter, and Adam, her husband and the Alpha of the Columbia Basin werewolf pack.  In the previous eight books you learn about Mercy’s life and how she gets embroiled into the lives of the local werewolf pack, the vampire enclave, the Fae community and, to some extent, the authorities.  Time and time again, Mercy gets into to trouble, gets others out of trouble, and saves the day, all while keeping herself and those she cares about alive.  

What is amazing about this series is that even though there is a lot of action packed battle scenes, run for your life moments, and an abundance of villains it’s the characters that keep you coming back over and over again.  Mercy is a wonderfully strong female character that stands her ground, Adam is a strong Alpha werewolf that is interested in protecting his pack and courting his mate, and the various members of the werewolf pack and local community that come in and out of the plots are diverse, well-rounded and fun to read about.  This is a fantastic science fiction book with a happy for now ending that is hard to put down.  For those of you who don’t mind a little magic and supernatural happenings in your reading, Patricia Briggs is a wonderful introduction into a new genre. 

Friday, March 11, 2016

Introduction to Me!

Welcome to my new blog!  To tell you a little bit about myself, I have been a librarian for over 8 years,  I live in North Carolina and my favorite types of books to read are erotica, romance, science fiction and any combination of them!  I do throw in a random book on other topics, usually crafting, gardening, cooking, or the latest book that's being made into a movie!

I love to travel especially to the beach, which is convenient because North Carolina has a lot of them!  I also love to craft, sooo much!  I am one of those people that moves from craft to craft teaching myself through books, trial and error and the occasional class or online video.  Then I keep making my new craft until my house is overloaded with them and I don't know what to do with them all!

In this blog, I'll regularly share my latest craft project, some that I have done in the past, and my latest reads.  I have a lot of both!