Monday, March 29, 2010
Mission STS-131 is scheduled to launch on Monday, April 5th at 6:21 a.m. (for those keeping score, that means Miss Kati's bus spots at 3:45 a.m. to take her guests to the viewing site at Banana Creek).
All of this means that I will not be doing any blog updates this week. Have a fantastic week!
Thursday, March 25, 2010
Harry Burns: There are two kinds of women: high maintenance and low maintenance.Have you ever thought about whether or not you're a "high maintenance" or "low maintenance" kind of person?
Sally Albright: Which one am I?
Harry Burns: You're the worst kind; you're high maintenance but you think you're low maintenance.
Sally Albright: I don't see that.
Harry Burns: You don't see that? Waiter, I'll begin with a house salad, but I don't want the regular dressing. I'll have the balsamic vinegar and oil, but on the side. And then the salmon with the mustard sauce, but I want the mustard sauce on the side. "On the side" is a very big thing for you.
Sally Albright: Well, I just want it the way I want it.
Harry Burns: I know; high maintenance.
Having just started a relatively new relationship (with a guy I've known 20 years), I've been thinking about it. I definitely can relate to Sally. She wants it how she wants it. And yeah, me too. I definitely have things that I'm particular about. Certain rules that need to be adhered to. At the same time, things that aggravate the snot out of other women absolutely do not bother me.
One of my cardinal rules is, if you say you're going to call, you MUST call. Don't say "I'll call you later" unless you mean it. I'm a pretty neat person, I want things to be cleaned up and neat. I'm particular about certain things - a big portion of that probably comes from being single for so long. I have other rules, like, whoever gets out of the bed last makes it (for the record, it's always me, Scott gets up at the butt crack of dawn).
But, I could care less if Scott wants to go to a strip club. Doesn't phase me in the slightest. I'll watch football all day long, in fact, we'd better be watching the pregame show. So the term "football widow" will never, ever apply to me. I honestly could give a crap if Scott wants to go play 18 holes of golf. That's reading time for me.
Anyway, I know that I'm relatively high maintenance, but he says that the things I'm high maintenance about are easy for him to do, so it doesn't phase him. Amy(my best friend) says I'm extremely high maintenance.
Tuesday, March 23, 2010
Friday, March 19, 2010
Why do I love Red Robin, you ask? It's the unlimited free french fries. And the delicious bacon cheeseburgers.
No really, I have an unnatural love of Red Robin. There are none near my house. So when I go to Scott's, he knows to count on the fact that I'll be dragging him to Red Robin for lunch or dinner at least once while I'm there. He teases me mercilessly about it. But I am unabashed. I love that place.
What's not to love about a place that makes french fries and then just keeps bringing them to you, over and over again until you are stuffed? What's not to love, I ask you?!
Personally, I like their fries dipped in ranch dressing. Scott's a fan of one dip in blue cheese, then one dip in BBQ and then eat. Either way, he indulges me in my inappropriate love of the place.
And really, it's not like the food is that delicious. I mean, it's a good burger. It's no Five Guys, but it's damn good. But I'm mesmerized by the free french fries. And really, that's enough to make me absolutely adore the place.
Don't even get me started on Chik-Fil-A.
Your Turn: What restaurant chains do you have an unnatural love for? Do you make up any excuse to go there?
Thursday, March 18, 2010
So, my fantastic man drove up from Richmond last night to surprise me for my birthday. And this after I went on and on about how the producers of LOST clearly knew that it was my birthday because Tuesday's episode was Sawyer-centric and he spent a good deal of time with his shirt off.
Anyway, it was a wonderful surprise and the best possible way to have a birthday.
Thanks to everyone who wished me a happy day!
Wednesday, March 17, 2010
I mentioned in yesterday's post that I'd just begun Patience by Lisa Valdez. I'm now on about page 150. And I have to say, this book is not working for me on any level. Why? Because everything about it is extreme. The hero, Matthew is technically supposed to be a Dom, I suppose. He's remarkably autocratic, domineering in the extreme and generally an ass. He's all "Submit, dammit! Submit!" The heroine, Patience, certainly lives up to her name. She's a doormat in human form. All about him walking all over her. And not just in the bedroom, which frankly, is one thing. But he about lifts his leg and pees on her in a ballroom and she gets all throbby and wet from his dominance. Call me crazy, but he's like a stalker and she's a victim.
For sure I'll be writing a full review of this (look for it at Smexy Books in April). But in the mean time, it got me to thinking about over the top romances.
I like my heroes extremely alpha (although I'm discovering a taste for a well done beta). I mean, really alpha. I love them all protective and dominant. What I don't love is any hero that treats the heroine like chattel. I don't love when he does things that seem just downright mean in order to get the heroine to submit to his will. And most of all, I don't like when they take their anger out on the heroine.
So it got me thinking, why would an author pen a hero like this? Is it so his redemption would be sweeter? More poignant?
Patience reminds me very much of old school Woodiwiss, McNaught or Coulter romances where the heroes are alpha, and not even remotely sorry for it. Thus far all we've gotten from this hero is that he's MAD AS HELL AND HE'S NOT GOING TO TAKE IT ANYMORE! And that involves punishing the heroine who literally has not a damn thing to do with why he's mad. I truly cannot imagine how this hero is going to redeem himself in my eyes. In fact, I broke a Kati rule and read the last two chapters of Patience last night thinking perhaps I'd find the hero redeemed. Uh, no. Not even a bit.
So, I guess my question is, when is it OK in your mind to go over the top? What are some examples of romances that go over the top and do it successfully? Are there any "new" romances (as opposed to Old School) that do this successfully? I'm looking in particular for romances that feature heroes who are over the top.
Tuesday, March 16, 2010
Here's what I'm thinking about:
BOOKS: I've been reading up a storm. Have I been writing reviews up a storm? Uh, no. I owe Holly three, which I need to get done this week. Thank goodness I've about written them in my head, so it should be easy enough to get them down. I just finished reading Ice Queen and Mirror of My Soul by Joey W. Hill. Man! I love this Nature of Desire Series. Now I'm going to go with Miss Shiloh's recommendation and get Natural Law. Then I'll take a break, I think just so that the series doesn't go stale for me. I'm currently reading Patience by Lisa Valdez. So far there's a ton of throbbing going on. Between his legs, between her legs. She's a VERY, VERY liberal virgin. LOL! But I'm excited to read this installment. God knows we've waited long enough for it!
WATCHING: Scott was up for the weekend (see my pretty flowers post), and of course, I caught the cold that I've got on Friday. So Saturday was more or less spent sitting around my house. We did watch Taken starring Liam Neeson. Who I generally find to be pretty hot. This movie was no exception, he rolls all over Paris (YAY PARIS!) kicking bad-guy ass and trying to find his daughter. It's just that they could have done SO much more with the movie. But the setting was fun, and he somehow manages to make cheesy lines dignified with his sex on a stick accent.
BIRTHDAY: Tomorrow I turn 39. I'm actually not dreading it at all. Part of the reason is that I'm finally really in a very good place in my life. I feel like puzzle pieces I've been waiting ages to put together are finally together, and I'm really so happy. When I say that Scott is the best thing that ever happened to me, I'm not exaggerating. Not that I necessarily needed a man to complete me. But it's awfully nice to have someone who puts you first and thinks of your happiness above most anything else. Cheesy? OK, maybe. But I'm grateful every day for the blessings in my life. And these days, he feels like the biggest blessing I have.
That's it for me, what are you thinking about? Reading? Have you seen any good movies? What's going on with you?
Sunday, March 14, 2010
Friday, March 12, 2010
Thursday, March 11, 2010
I requested a book for review from Book Binge, and I read it, and did that thing. You know the one, where you finish the book and go back immediately and start it again? That thing.
The book is called Branded Sanctuary by Joey W. Hill. I have a love/less love relationship with Joey Hill. I loved her Vampire Queen's Servant series, but had a decidedly negative reaction to her mermaid series. But I think that she writes remarkably romantic and emotional stories, so I was more than happy to give her another shot.
I had absolutely no idea that Branded Sanctuary was actually book 7 in the Nature of Desire series. Oh, once I got into it, I realized that it must be a part of a loosely tied together series because of two secondary characters in the book who play a major role in the story and have already had their HEA. But in no way did it detract from my absolute enjoyment of the book.
The thing that shocks me, is that this book is about the Dom/sub lifestyle. One that I've always, without equivocation said does not work for me. I cannot relate to the pain/pleasure w/your sex thing. The thing about this book is that the heroine doesn't get it either. Not even a little. She's not programmed that way, and the hero is a submissive. Which means she spends most of the book trying to understand why he enjoys it, whether she could ever be enough for him and whether they she can get over her own demons enough to make a go of it with him.
It is a gorgeously crafted story. One that absolutely brought tears to my eyes over and over again. I loved every moment of it. And the most exciting part is that it's got 6 preceding books. Which means I'll be buying at least two of them right off the bat. Mostly because I've got to read the love story of those two secondary characters I mentioned.
Don't you just love finding a new to you series?
YOUR TURN: Have you discovered any new series lately? Either by a new-to-you author? Or an author whose work you already love?
Wednesday, March 10, 2010
1- MOVIE: Steel Magnolias - It's my favorite go-to PMS movie. The scene at the graveside literally works for me every single time. Sally Field's abject rejection at her daughter's death is so powerful.
2- MOVIE: Stepmom - OMG. The scene at the end, where Susan Sarandon and Gena Malone are sitting the chair, and Gena finally realizes that this is her last Christmas with her Mom? *SOB* Gets me every time.
3- TV: Grey's Anatomy - Into You Like a Train. This is an episode where there's a massive trainwreck, and two people come in impaled on a pole, but both still alive. But one is going to have to die for the other to survive. Two total strangers, one horrible choice. The scene at the end where the woman realizes she's going to die, and she asks Dr. Shepherd to be the one to tell her fiance that she died bravely and with absolute love in her heart for him? It's a sobfest.
4- TV: Grey's Anatomy - Losing My Religion. Oh. I remember watching this episode live and meeting my roommate on the first floor (I'd watched in my bedroom, she'd watched in hers), and both of us were literally sobbing. It's the episode where Denny Duquette dies. It's gut wrenching and just so beautifully played by Katherine Heigl, who now aggravates the snot out of me, but won an Emmy for her performance.
5- TV: Buffy the Vampire Slayer - The Body. This episode is done with no music whatsoever. It's the episode where Buffy comes home to find her mother dead. It is television perfection. Believe it.
6- BOOK: Blue Eyed Devil by Lisa Kleypas. There is one particular scene in this book, where Haven's husband has literally beaten the crap out of her, and physically thrown her out on the front stoop to sleep the night. Haven pulls herself up, and drags herself in bare feet and pajamas to a supermarket some distance from their home to call her brother to come and get her. It's gut wrenching, and painful, and just so poignant. It makes me cry every time.
7- MUSIC: Why by Nichole Nordeman. I don't listen to many Christian artists, but I adore Nichole Nordeman. Part of it is because her vocal range is right in my wheel house and I love to sing along. But also because she writes amazing, moving music, and is able to sing it with such conviction. This song is told from the viewpoint of a child going to witness the crucifiction. It's absolutely gut wrenching. I usually have to turn off the album before I get to the song because I know no matter what when I hear it, it will make me cry.
Your Turn: Are you a crier? And if so, what movie, TV, book or music gets you all choked up?
Tuesday, March 9, 2010
Monday, March 8, 2010
Sarah Jessica Parker: I sort of get what she's going for here. But it's a huge miss for me. It's pillow case-ish, and the bun in the back is just awful. I mean, it's like she had a massive fashion aneurysm or something. I expect more from someone who is a fashion icon.
As an aside: Scott and I got into a disagreement last night over who is a bigger icon: Matthew Broderick as Ferris Buehler or SJP as Carrie Bradshaw. I say SJP, he maintains it's Broderick. Let me know what you think in the comments!
Queen Latifah: I think the secret to being a larger woman on the red carpet is to FIT THE HELL out of your dresses. They need to be perfectly fitted, and then frankly, you need to be trussed up like a Thanksgiving turkey underneath. Clearly, Queen Latifah gets this. On top of that, this is an amazingly flattering color on her, and it makes her skin absolutely luminous. Combined with the jewels on the dress, and the bling bling in her ears, this is perfection!
Demi Moore: I don't love it. I think it's not good when your skin tone and the dress match that closely. Plus, has she had more plastic surgery? She barely looks like herself anymore.
Cameron Diaz: She's consistently one of my worst dressed on the red carpet. But wow, when she knocks it out of the park, she knocks it out of the park! This dress is fitted perfectly, and apparently, she decided the engage the services of a hair stylist for this awards show (go Cami!). Grade: A+
Helen Mirren: To me, Dame Helen is the poster child for age appropriate fashion. She looks elegant and sexy. I think she qualifies for GILF status (you know, grandmother I'd like to...).
Sandra Bullock: When Scott and I were talking on the phone last night (what can I say? My guy loves the red carpet), he said he thought her makeup was a little heavy, until he realized that it was put on for being up on stage. I agree, I think that the pink/red lips are a bit much, and I've heard some buzz about the dress being a little ice skatery. I thought she looked statuesque, and lovely. And you cannot overstate the gorgeousness of her head of hair.
Rachel McAdams: I think Rachel McAdams is just lovely. She's young and fresh, and really beautiful. I love the fabric on this dress and the sweepy nature of it. It billows, but really shows off her lovely shoulders and arms. I also love the addition of the heavy earring.
Maggie Gyllenhall: I find Maggie G. to be very hit or miss on the red carpet. But I adore this dress. It's bold print is youthful and fun, and her make-up and hair are flawless. And again, gorgeous arms and shoulders. I think my only niggle with it, is I wish that she'd gone with heavier earrings.
Charlize Theron: I think Charlize is one of about three or four women in Hollywood who have the body to pull off couture. This dress is clearly custom made for her. And I get what she was going for her. But the flourishes around her bodice does look a bit like the dress is groping her. But the color is lovely, and her hair is gorgeous, and the back of this dress was really interesting. No one can say this is not a gloriously beautiful woman.
Elizabeth Banks: When I first saw this dress, I didn't like it very much. I think that the bodice doesn't flatter her breasts very well. She doesn't have a teeny chest, but it looks like it. But when she walks, the dress opens to give a gorgeous shot of her stupendous legs, which I liked. Plus, you can barely see them, but her sandals were awesome. Plus I liked her jeweled head-band.
Anna Kendrick: I have mixed feelings about this dress. I think that it's pretty, but I wish it were a deeper pink. In some photos of it, it literally looks like it's her skin tone. I wish she'd been a bit bolder. I don't object to the dress, per se, I am not really feelin' it, you know?
Carey Mulligan: SIGH. I don't like this dress. And I especially don't like the sandals. First, I'm not a huge fan of variable hemlines. Plus she's got such a gorgeous and gamine face. I wish she'd gone with something much more form fitting and flattering.
Miley Cyrus: When one is chest-ually challenged, one should not wear bustier dresses. This dress was fitted much too tightly to her breasts (which are small anyway, because she weighs roughly ten pounds) and it made her constantly kind of hunch forward as if to give her poor boobs a break. Plus, I don't think the dress was age appropriate. Although, more appropriate than what her mom had on. That's for sure.
I love this new trend of these super structured dresses. I think that they're interesting and dynamic. But I also think you need to know how to work them to pull them off. Here are three case studies.
Zoe Saldana: I'm a bit on the fence about this dress. I love the bodice. And the verigated color. But it gets kind of huge and puffy down at the bottom. She's definitely statuesque enough to pull it off. And she was smart enough not to wear a bunch of jewelry to overpower the dress, which is doing all of the work. I need to keep pondering on this dress to see what I think in the end.
What do you guys think?
Jennifer Lopez: Now, this is structure. And J. Lo. is just the girl to work a dress like this. It's fitted gloriously and is a demure color, which kind of lets the construction of the dress do all the work. And I like it. There are few people who could pull a dress of this magnitude off, but I felt like she did a decent job of it. I do wish she'd worn strappy sandals instead of pumps (that look dyed to match) though.
Vera Farmiga: I love the color of this dress. But the dress itself reminds me of the plants from Avatar that the hero would touch and they'd pop down into the ground. It's a whole lot of dress. I wish she'd gone with the color but a different design for her first big red carpet. She's a gorgeous woman, but, well, I'm definitely not sold on it.
*All photos were borrowed from EW.com
Thursday, March 4, 2010
It's actually quite a sweet romance. But here's what struck me about it. If Riley had been a woman (and he could have been) very, very little about the story would have changed. I mean, there were (obviously) a couple of sex acts that would have been modified, but other than that, this book read like a M/F romance.
So that got me to thinking, I don't read a ton of M/M, I've probably read 10 or 15 altogether, so I am by no means an expert. But to me, the allure of M/M romance is it's two guys. And we get to get inside their heads, and kind of, see the way the male mind works. And in this case, Riley really, really could have been female. He had what I would consider to be female thought processes, he reacted in quintessentially female ways to certain situations, and in generally acted like a girl to me. Which left me, not with a bad taste in my mouth exactly, but more, a vague feeling of dissatisfaction. Like the door had been opened, but as a reader, I hadn't been invited to walk through.
I'm not saying I need two totally manly men for a M/M romance to work for me. But, I've got to buy both of the heroes as guys, you know? I think about LB Gregg's books, where there is usually a more "dominant" male, or The Assignment by Evangeline Anderson, where both guys are relatively dominant, and one is closeted, or My Fair Captain by JL Langley, where there is a definite ALPHA male, or even the Adrien English series by Josh Lanyon, where Adrien is my favorite type of man: good looking, smart and a total wise ass. Even in cases where one of the heroes is a much more dominant male, there is still "guy-speak" going on in both heads. Which for me, is the joy of M/M romance. And it just seemed to be missing in this case.
Your turn: When thinking about M/M romance, do you need a definite alpha, or is it OK to have one of the heroes seem almost "female" in their dialogue, actions and monologue? Am I being oversensitive here? And if you've read M/M romance where you've found that trope to be successful, please give me the titles, I'd like to try some other titles and see if it was this author's style or the trope itself that bothers me.
Wednesday, March 3, 2010
Yeah. So tomorrow came this morning when I stepped on the scale and actually gaped at the number. This is bad. Very, very bad. So, effective immediately, I'm on a treat/junk food moratorium. No more snacking, treating, gorging or anything else.
Now, it is my birthday this month, so I am allowed to treat myself on the appropriate days. But other than that -- no ma'am. I'm back to grilled chicken salads and WW food. In fact, I'm buying a three month WW subscription. The worst part is I have a physical on Friday, and I'm quite sure if nothing else, my blood work is going to tell the tale of my overindulgence. Why is it so easy to put on five pounds, and so freaking HARD to take it off?
It's good that this happened now, though. My friend Amy just announced her engagement yesterday at our small group (YAY AMY & NEAL!), so I'm all in on the dieting thing. It's in support of her. (Thanks, Amy!)
Anyway, I'm posting it here so that it's real. No more junk food. No more gorging. No more delicious bacon cheeseburgers from Red Robin :wails:. No more double stuff oreos.
You heard it here first.
Tuesday, March 2, 2010
The fear of getting caught is half the fun.
- Lowly art gallery assistant Caesar Romano is freely out of the closet. Now he'd just like to get out of his Nana's guest room. Everything -- his reputation and his financial freedom -- is riding on the success of tonight's gallery opening. If only he could shake free of the past so easily.
- A mysterious gatecrasher, Dan Green, looks like a promising addition to his pending new life -- until Caesar's ex shows up and suddenly the opening disintegrates into a half-naked dance melee. When the glitter settles, a missing sculpture of Justin Timberlake has Caesar up to his eyebrows in extortion, intrigue and a wild sexual adventure underneath, inside, and on top of a variety of furnishings.
- As the cast of suspects piles up, so do the questions. Like who's really blackmailing whom? And what does a stolen paint-by-numbers clown matter when Dan is so outrageously capable of blowing Caesar's resistance to smithereens?
ETA: Contest a LBea's Nose In A Book . Review Catch Me If You Can and be entered to win a gift certificate. Click here to find out more.
And to Julie James for her new release, Something About You
FATE HAS THROWN TWO SWORN ENEMIES. . .
Of all the hotel rooms rented by all the adulterous politicians in Chicago, female Assistant U.S. Attorney Cameron Lynde had to choose the one next to 1308, where some hot-and-heavy lovemaking ends in bloodshed. And of all the FBI agents in Illinois, it had to be Special Agent Jack Pallas who gets assigned to this high-profile homicide. The same Jack Pallas who still blames Cameron for a botched crackdown three years ago—and nearly ruining his career…
. . .INTO EACH OTHER’S ARMSWork with Cameron Lynde? Are they kidding? Maybe, Jack thinks, this is some kind of welcome-back prank after his stint away from Chicago. But it’s no joke: the pair is going to have to put their rocky past behind them and focus on the case at hand. That is, if they can cut back on the razor-sharp jibes—and smother the flame of their sizzling-hot sexual tension…
Buy it here.
ETA: Fancy-Schmancy Contest over at Save the Contemporary - you could win an iTouch or a free copy of the book. Click here to find out more.
**I borrowed the text separator thingy from the lovely Kmont of Lurv a la Mode.
Monday, March 1, 2010
Reading: I just started Embrace the Night Eternal by Joss Ware today. It's fun because one of the characters has a diary called...wait for it: Adventures in Juliedom. Coincidence? I think not. Anyway, if you're not reading this series you should be. It's post-apocolyptic, and filled with hot men, smart women, and all kinds of weird conspiracy stuff. I'm also reading a Sarah Mayberry book, which I can't remember the title of, but it features a heroine who is a tattoo artist. Since I'm fascinated by all things tattoo, I've been quite enjoying this book, although, the hero is starting to aggravate me a little bit because he's all "No, no, I can't. I only want to help you, not fuck you." And that's while walking around in a pretty much constant state of arousal. I'm just saying. Get on with it already!
Watching: Scott was at my house this weekend and we decided to go see Avatar 3D. Honestly? I had no interest in seeing the movie. But it's getting so much buzz, and is supposed to be ground breaking, and it's earned something like a billion dollars worldwise and I had free movie tickets. So, we decided to go. I'll say this, it's the most gloriously visual movie I've ever scene. The scenery is sumptuous and lush. And the imaginations that went into creating the world and the creatures that live in it must be some of the most innovative out there. The story itself is pretty thin. But the visuals are just so breathtaking that it doesn't really matter. It will win a ton of awards, I'm sure.
Olympics: I'm not even kidding, I probably watched all together about eight or nine hours of Olympics coverage out of the 75 kabillion hours that NBC broadcast. Here's what I know about the Olympics:
1) The guy who did the color commentary for the cross country skiing and Nordic combined races had to be the most annoying color commentator like EVAR. Seriously, it's cross country skiing. It's just not that exciting, take a sedative and calm the hell down!
2) I watched the women's ice skating online the next day. That way I didn't have to wade through all the extemperaneous bullshit to get to what I really wanted to watch, which was about five routines. The little girl from Korea who won skated one of the most glorious programs ever. I'm glad she won.
3) I watched more hours that I care to admit to of curling. Yeah -- I still don't get it (Sorry, Nath). But I'll say this, I watched the men's Canadian curling team polish off the Swedish team, and Sweden has got a serious cutey-pants curler names Nikolas something or 'nother with the most ethereal blue eyes I've ever seen. I mean, seriously blue.
4) I'd be way happier for the Canadians winning Gold in hockey if it hadn't been stupid Sidney Crosby who scored the damn goal. I hate that guy. Which comes with the territory of being a Caps fan. Why did it have to be him? Ugh.
Food: OMG, Scott and I ate our way through the weekend. Saturday morning we went to The Original Pancake House where I had a Dutch Baby (see photo), which is this kind of griddle cakey thingy that is as big as your head and is served with confectioners sugar and lemon. It is indescribable deliciousness. Then we went to the movies and pigged out on junk food. And then we went to dinner at Ted's Montana Grill. I had a delmonico cut of bison there that was amazing. I've become a HUGE fan of bison. Then yesterday morning we met Amy and her family for brunch where I had my usual, Eggs Benedict. Mmmm, fat. Fat is what I am now. I'm going to be all about the Weight Watchers this week.
Birthday: My birthday is coming up. On the 17th I'll be 39. In true Kati tradition, I'm going to do everything I can to extend the birthday festivites throughout the month. I'm going to my parents' house next weekend to celebrate . The following weekend, Tracy will be in town as will Scott, and we'll go out with friends in the area for dinner. Then the following weekend is Heather's birthday. The weekend after that is Scott's birthday, and we'll be going to see Bon Jovi on the 29th. See? A month of festivities. Sure, it's not really all about me, but it's gonna be fun anyway!
I guess that's about it for me.
What's going on in your world? What are you reading? Seen any good movies? Eaten anything yummy?