Monday, January 24, 2011

From the files of "I swore I'd never..."

I was one of the last to adopt CDs (I had cassettes well into my freshman year of college) and DVDs (I still have a VCR!). I don't have a smartphone because I think a phone should make phone calls and that's about it. But I bought an eReader.

I'm still not sure what possessed me. I love books. There's nothing better than a crisp new paperback or a shiny new hardcover. I always said an eReader would be great to have if I still lived in Korea and rode the subway or travelled a lot, which I don't. But Borders kept sending out e-mails about their eReader, the Kobo, being on sale for $99.99. I had just gotten a $50 check for my participation in a University of Michigan study. And I know that my library loans out ebooks. And...the Kobo comes in lavender. I was sold.

So, I'm now the proud owner of an eBook reader. I must say it's pretty cool that, theoretically, I could be carrying 1000 books around in my purse.

Thursday, January 20, 2011


My sweet Evan is scared of a lot of things. Strangers who get too close. Loud noises -- the blender, the garbage disposal, the vacuum. (I've solved this one by avoiding housework in general. Okay, not really. Although I must admit it's been way too long since I've vacuumed...Well, you don't want me to traumatize the poor child, do you?) And now he's scared of:
The Munchkin inflatable duck tub, pictured above.
He doesn't mind taking showers with Mike, and he wasn't afraid of a bath in my parents' tub, but apparently this duck is just too much. The first time we put him in it he screamed bloody murder. Right now it's sitting on the bathroom floor and every time I take him in there, he eyes it warily. I know he will love splashing in the water once he gets used to it, but I don't want to terrorize him in the meantime. And I'm afraid to give him a bath in our tub without it because we have one of those sliding door tubs and access to both sides of the tub is limited. And I hate to buy another inflatable tub because this is the second one I've bought; the first one (another brand) refused to inflate. Any ideas?

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

My Mixed Feelings About Amazon

I just snatched up a deal from Living Social -- I paid $10 for a $20 Amazon gift card -- and then posted about it on Facebook in hopes that people would use my link and I would get credit for it. (If you're interested in the deal, here's the link.)

And then I started to think, hmmm, now everyone knows I am an Amazon shopper.

What's the big deal? Well, as a librarian and lover of literature, it's pretty much expected that I will be a supporter of independent bookstores. They're better for the community and better for the publishing industry at large.

But they're not better for my pocketbook. (Although do we ever use the word "pocketbook" in any context other than that phrase? I don't think I've ever said, "Oh, wait, let me grab my pocketbook." Huh.)

To be fair, I probably buy more other stuff on Amazon than books. With (free) Amazon Mom, I've been getting free two-day shipping for months now, and that's just downright tempting when I am in need of gifts, baby gear, a DVD, even, several months ago, a new GPS. The fact is, Amazon usually has the best price. And, in case you haven't noticed, I'm cheap and always looking for the best deal. And when I don't shop for books at Amazon, I usually use a coupon at Borders. I figure, at least they're a Michigan company.

Okay, now I'm just feeling guilty. Do you shop at Amazon?

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Book Review: Attachments by Rainbow Rowell

For all you grown-ups out there...I got to read an ARC of Rainbow Rowell's forthcoming novel, Attachments, due out in April from Dutton. First of all, how can you not like something written by someone named Rainbow? Second of all, this is a true romantic comedy, but with depth, non-cookie-cutter characters, and a fun 1999/2000 setting. The premise: sweet guy hired to basically spy on a newspaper's employees by reading their e-mail, sweet guy keeps getting flagged messages from two female friends who work at the paper, sweet guy falls in love with one of the girls but how in the world is he going to tell her? Lincoln's side of the story is told in straight narrative; Beth's is only revealed through her e-mails. It's a unique format, and (Rainbow!)Rowell totally pulls it off. My only caution is that one of Lincoln's friends swears a lot, but he's not a major part of the plot so it's not that often. (Plus, the profanity truly suits his character, and sets up a nice juxtaposition between his character and Lincoln's.) And, to top it all off, Haven Kimmel blurbed the book -- so if you don't want to take my word for it, take hers. It's a definitely delightful read by Rainbow Rowell. (Okay, sorry, couldn't resist the alliteration there.)

Thursday, January 6, 2011

New Year's Resolutions

I've never been one for New Year's resolutions, but this year I have a few. My life has changed so much in the last year and a half that I find myself needing to make some changes of my own to adjust to my new normal.
First, I am resolving to exercise at least 4-5 times a week, as I did pre-baby. I'm starting small: 20-minute workouts from two DVDs, Tracy Mallett's Get Your Body Back and The Firm's Calorie Explosion. We'll see how that goes! I have at least 20 pounds to lose, courtesy of the adorable baby you see to your left.
My other resolution is to plan/shop ahead so I can make a healthy dinner most nights of the week. I've enlisted the help of Relish. I purchased a 6-month subscription through Mamapedia for $17 and have planned one week's meals so far. Tonight I made crispy baked fish and coleslaw in less than 30 minutes, and it was pretty good. We'll see how the rest of the recipes are, but it really helps to have a list to choose from, and an automatically-generated shopping list!

Wow, as I read back over this, I realize that my New Year's resolutions are boring and predictable. But I guess a girl has to start somewhere.

How about you? Do you make New Year's resolutions?

Whether you do or not, Happy New Year, a little late!