Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Ten New to Me Authors for 2013

I saw a post like this on Once Upon a Twilight and it looked interesting enough that I decided to due one for myself.

1. Shelly Adina - I got the first book in the series, Lady of Devices: A steampunk adventure novel (Magnificent Devices), as a free kindle (it is still free), and I really liked the book. It isn't too long, 258 pages. It is steampunk, but more of a lite steampunk, so if you aren't sure if you would like the steampunk genre I think it is a good first steampunk book. I enjoyed the book so much that I bought the next three books, Her Own Devices, Magnificent Devices, and Brilliant Devices. There is a fifth book out, A Lady of Resources, which is set in later years and deals with twins Lizzie and Maggie. I haven't bought it yet, but it is on my "to read" list.

2. Thomas K. Carpenter - Gamers was originally a free kindle too, but the price has gone to $3.99 right now. What if your whole life was just one big MMO, for everything you did all day you made points, some actions are worth more points than others and you need so many points to survive high school. It was a fun read, if you don't game there are some words that might need to be looked up. There are two other books in the series, Frags, and Coders (Gamers #3), I haven't read them let, they are however on my growing "to read" list.

3. Soman Chainani - The School for Good and Evil was such a great book! I really didn't want this book to end, the descriptions were fantastic and the characters were engaging. The second book in the series comes out in April next year, The School for Good and Evil #2: A World without Princes and of course it is on my "to read" list.

4. Janet Evanovich - Evanovich has been writing the Stephanie Plum series since 1994, but I only just started reading it with One for the Money (Stephanie Plum, No. 1) (Stephanie Plum Novels) this month. The library was out of Two for the Dough (Stephanie Plum, No. 2) (Stephanie Plum Novels) when I went to go get it, which means I have to wait to read the next book! (*whine*) Anyway, I found the book to be highly entertaining, partly because the husband used to be a bounty hunter, but mostly from the humor of the main character Stephanie Plum.

5. Chandra Hahn - I read UnEnchanted (An Unfortunate Fairy Tale) with my book club, it is a free kindle, it is another retelling of the Grimm's fairy tales that are really popular right now. There is a bit of a racist part, the Chinese neighbors' accents are unnecessary and do not add anything to the story. I did buy the next book in the series, Fairest (An Unfortunate Fairy Tale Book 2), but I haven't read it yet.

6. Kate Locke - I read God Save the Queen (The Immortal Empire) earlier in the year. It was a really entertaining book. It is set in modern times, the story starts in 2012, when the first book came out, but is an alternate history. Queen Victoria never died and the world is full of vampires, who set the world's fashion, werewolves, halfies (half vampires), and goblins. I downloaded the second book, The Queen Is Dead, but haven't been able to read it yet, and the third book, Long Live the Queen is already out.

7. Daniel O'Malley - In the beginning The Rook: A Novel starts off like a typical James Bond style spy book, but it quickly changes over to something from the X-Men. I do hope the author plans on writing another book, either with the same characters or something new.

8. James Patterson - I haven't read anything by Patterson before. Sure, I saw his books in the mystery, crime and young adult sections, and I had been intrigued by descriptions of the books, but I have always found it hard to figure out which books came in what order in his books. I found one stand alone book of his, Toys, it does just kind of jump into the middle of the plot without any back-story which can be a bit disconcerting. You can read the first 21 chapters for free here. I also read a new series by him, only 'cause I knew it was the first book in the series, called Confessions of a Murder Suspect which I highly enjoyed, more than Toys, and I hope to be able to read the next book, Confessions: The Private School Murders, in the series soon.

9. Liz Schulte - I got Easy Bake Coven as a free kindle. There's no baking in the story and it is more about elves than about witches, but it is a quick, easy and light-hearted read. If you need some thing mindless to read from the romance comedy genre I would recommend this book. The second book, Hungry, Hungry Hoodoo (Easy Bake Coven) and the third book, Pickup Styx (Easy Bake Coven) are both on my "to read" list.

10. Stephen Sweeney - I just finished reading The Honour of the Knights (Battle for the Solar System, #1), the best way that I can explain it is as David Weber's Honor Harrington series, but less technical. There are two other books in the trilogy so far, The Third Side, and The Attribute of the Strong.

As you can probably tell me "to read" list is fairly long.

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Tuesday, December 24, 2013

Korean Christmas

How to say Merry Christmas in Korean by Talk to Me in Korean:

And more about Christmas in Korea by Learn Korean with

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Saturday, December 21, 2013

Top Five Modern Non-Animated Fantasy Movies

Modern as from 2000 to present, non-animated as in not completely CGI or traditional animation/claymation, and top five because they are favorites of mine.

Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone (2001): Yes, Daniel Radcliff's acting maybe very stilted in this movie, but he does improve in the later movies, but it is the first one. The locations and settings, clothing and even all the little nick-knacks in the shops were fantastic. When you first see Diagon Alley it really is amazing.

The Lord of the Rings (2002-2004): This maybe broken up into three parts, but really it is just one long nine hour movie, but it is great. The sceneries are stunning, the costume work is awesome, the metal work on the armor, weapons and jewelry is great. I would also include The Hobbit in with this.

Stardust (2007): This is definitely as story that I would consider calling a modern fairy tale (the book was great too!)

Sucker Punch (2011): I love this movie. I count it as fantasy since it really is a dream within a dream within a dream.

Percy Jackson & The Olympians: The Lightning Thief (2010): I haven't seen the new one yet, so it might be better than this one. I would have to say that there was a lot cut out or changed from the book, so it wasn't as good as it could have been, but it was enjoyable enough that I could watch it again.

Pirates of the Caribbean: The Curse of the Black Pearl (2003): This one doesn't quite qualify, because whenever the pirates are in the moonlight they are CGI, yes, the others have special effects too, but a lot of the characters spend a signficant amount of time as CGI characters. Anyway, love the movie, the characters were great.

This list was harder to make that I thought it should have been. I read over other people's lists and there were a lot that I would consider science-fiction and not fantasy.

Currently watching: My Love from the Star

Currently reading:

The Honour of the Knights (Second Edition) (Battle for the Solar System, #1) by Stephen J. Sweeny

Good story so far. A bit like David Weber's writing.

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Wednesday, December 4, 2013

2PM One Point Hangul episodes 6-10

Sorry it has been so long since the last post for this. If you would like to see the previous episodes please see this post.

2PM is my favorite idol group from Korea. The guys are funny, so it makes watching almost everything they do enjoyable while I try to learn Korean.

This series is actually for Japanese people to learn Korean, but the guys speak Korean mostly during each episode, so it can be really useful if you are trying to learn Korean.

I have copied down the Korean that is to learn, but I did not translate these episodes, that was done by Wild2Day, I just wanted to make it easier to follow the lesson by not having to stop the video every few seconds. I didn't add any romanization because I just didn't know if I should, but I put the Korean in large font for easier reading. I am not an expert, I am learning Korean myself.

Edit: March 2, 2015 I was able to find all the videos for this page, except episode 1. I couldn't even find it without subs, so if you happen to find it please leave a comment with a link to the video, thanks. The translations on the new videos are from rikakotsu @JunkayStreet, my writing is from the original translations I got from Wild2Day, so they may not match rikakotsu's.

Episode 6:

머리 아파요.
My head hurts.

My stomach hurts.

가슴 아파요.
My chest hurts.

You can easily replace body parts. Do you see the underlined 가 and 이 in the sentences above? These are subject markers, you can read more about them here. The short version is if the subject ends in a vowel (ㅏ, ㅑ, ㅓ, ㅕ, ㅗ, ㅛ, ㅜ, ㅠ, ㅡ, ㅣ, or one of the many diphthongs, ㅐ, ㅒ,ᅦ, ᅨ, ᅪ, ᅫ, ᅬ, ᅯ, ᅰ, ᅱ, ㅢ) you add 가 to indicate that is the subject. If the word ends in a consonant (ᄀ, ᄁ, ᄂ, ᄃ, ᄄ, ᄅ, ᄆ, ᄇ, ᄈ, ᄉ, ᄊ, ᄋ, ᄌ, ᄍ, ᄎ, ᄏ, ᄐ, ᄑ, ᄒ) you add 이. So, you can make new sentences like:

다리가 아파요.
My leg hurts. (But watch out because 다리 also means bridge.)

어깨가 아파요.
My shoulder hurts.

팔이 아파요.
My arm hurts.

Now you can add other words like:

Foot = 발

Hand = 손

Ear = 귀

Eye = 눈

Knee = 무릎

Other things to learn from this episode:

약 = medicine/drug

괜찮아요? = Are you okay?

Episode 7:

[W2D] 120521 One Point Korean Lesson #7 [Eng... by wild2day

신천 가 주세요.
Please take me to Sincheon.
The 가 in the sentence isn't the same as last episodes, it isn't a subject marker, but from the verb to go 가다

공항 가 주세요.?
Please take me to the airport.

호텔 가 주세요.?
Please take me to the hotel.

여기 가 주세요.?
Please take me here.

You can change it to ask a taxi driver to take you to different places, such as:
압구정 가 주세요.?
Please take me to Apgujeong.

명동 가 주세요.?
Please take me Myeondong.

홍대 가 주세요.?
Please take me Hongdae.

이태원 가 주세요.?
Please take me Itaewon.

You can find other places to visit in Seoul here.

Other words to learn in this episode:

City hall = 시청

taxi = 택시

there = 거기

there (farther away) = 저기

I understand = 알겠습니다

Episode 8:

[W2D] 120528 One Point Korean Lesson #8 [Eng... by wild2day


This is cool too.

Informal, used with/between friends.

Other words to learn:
jacket = 재킷

hat = 모자

scarf = 목도리 or 스카프

bag = 가방

shoes = 신발

pants/trousers = 바지

shirt = 셔츠

clothes = 옷

Episode 9:

[W2D] 120604 NHK 2PM's One Point Korean Lesson... by wild2day

이가 얼마예요?.
How much is this?

좀 비싸요..
It is a little expensive.

좀 깎아 주세요.
Please lower the price a little bit.

Other words to learn:
customer = 손

won = 원

Koreans use two number systems, native Korean numbers and Chinese Korean numbers (also called Sino-Korean numbers.) You have to know both number systems to be able to count in Korean, because it depends on what you are counting as to which system you use. Telling time actually uses both systems, native Korean numbers for the 12 hour system, using Sino-Korean numbers for the minutes. It gets a bit more confusing if you the 24 hour system, you can read about it more here.

I will only put one through ten here for this lesson.

Arabic Korean Chinese

Episode 10:

[W2D] 120611 2PM's One Point Korean Lesson #10... by wild2day

일본어 팜플렛 있어요지하철역 어디예요??
Where is the subway?

화장실 어디예요?
Where is the toilet?

2PM CD 어디예요??
Where are the 2PM CDs?

Other words from this episode:

Excuse me = 저기요

Right wards = 오른쪽

Left wards = 왼쪽

If you have any questions let me know, I might even be able to answer some of them!

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Sunday, December 1, 2013

5 December wants

Christmas is coming up, so I picked things that I would like to buy for Jasmine, but unless I get a job real quick it isn't going to happen.

I would really like to get Jasmine an American Girl Doll, so she can have a doll that looks like herself, but the basic 18" doll is $110, without and clothes or anything. There is no way that I can afford that right now, so we'll be sticking with Build-a-Bear which is a fourth of the price, the clothes are even much cheaper than American Girl. So, a new dress for Emily, Jasmine's kitty.

I can't believe the Octonauts are so expensive!

Peppa is a bit expensive too.

We weren't able to see this when it was in the theaters, and Jasmine really enjoyed the first movie.

We just need it. And we'll have to watch over, and over, and over, and over again and again and again and again.

So yes, this month is all about Christmas shopping for Jasmine, and finding a job, still feel a bit guilty for all the things of her's that we had to throw away for the move here.

Currently watching: I am rewatching Faith on It is one of the few K-dramas that is licensed in the UK on, most of the K-dramas are blocked for me right now.

Currently reading:

A Christmas Carol by Charles Dickens

To get in the Chistmas spirit, plus it is a free kindle!

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Thursday, November 28, 2013

Happy Thanksgiving!

I know I still haven't posted about our first days after arriving in the UK and Leeds. I do hope to get it up soon, but I've lacked inspiration to write recently and Jasmine and I were both sick this week. Luckily Jasmine's NHS number has come in and she was able to go to the university medical centre.

I found turkey at one of the butchers at the Leeds Open Market. They didn't carry whole turkeys, which is just as well, since one wouldn't fit in our tiny oven. They sell turkey necks, butts, wings and drumsticks, but no breasts. I got two drumsticks and a wing for £4.31, which is really reasonible since two small steaks, I don't know from which part of the cow since they only say frying steak, are £2.75.

I had to ask one of our lovely neighbors how to light the oven, more complicated than you would think. It took about an hour and half to cook the meat, these were huge drumsticks and wing. We got boxed sage stuffing, and tinned whole berry cranberry sauce when we went to the commissary at RAF Menwith Hill last time. I would have gotten the packaged fresh cranberries and made my own sauce, but they only had three packages and each one looked terrible, the berries were about to mold.

But the food was all good and we got to have dinner as a family. Hopefully next year we can invite friends, but this year we could only handle ourselves.

I forgot to take pictures, oh well. Still looking for a job too, not having much luck though. If anyone know of any part-time jobs in the Woodhouse area please let me know!

Currently watching: The Heirs. It has a really, really typical K-drama story line, but the actors make it fun to watch in my opinion.

Currently reading:

One for the Money (Stephanie Plum, No. 1) by Janet Evanovich

I don't normally read mystery books, but from the blurb on the back cover this one seemed like it would be fun, even though it is almost twenty years old.

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Friday, November 1, 2013

5 November wants

This months wants are a bit more practical, I think.

Our bathroom only has the heated radiator towel rail, and it only holds one towel, but there are three of us. So this would be nice to hang towels that aren't being used on. There also isn't a lot of wall space, so something that goes over the door is better. What is funny is that we had one, but we left it in California.

This would be great for shopping. Right now I just walk to the city centre and buy a few things at a time, because I can only carry so much at a time. This would make it easier to be able to get more at a time.

It is actually time to start planting. Plants like garlic and winter shallot need to be planted now so they will be ready to harvest in spring.

I think we need about three of these, that away each of us has one and we should probably sit with it an hour a day, but it'll have to wait until after I get a job.


500 Basic Korean Verbs: The Only Comprehensive Guide to Conjugation and Usage by Kyubyong Park

I found Korean classes in Leeds, at the university actually. I'm in the beginner's class, but I really need help with verbs. I really wish this book was offered as a kindle.

Currently watching: The Heirs. I am really enjoying it so far.

Currently reading:

The Infernal Devices 3: Clockwork Princess by Cassandra Clare

I don't know why, but I like this series better than Cassandra Clare's other series Mortal Instruments, I wonder if it is the difference in setting and time period.

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Wednesday, October 9, 2013

5 October wants

Here are five things that I really want right now.

The first one is really ridiculous, because Hello! £410 is $652! I don't even know why I want it since I don't carry clutches/purses/bags any way. I just like how it sparkles. I don't know what I would do with it, it'd probably sit at home in its box all the time any way.

This is a bit silly too. I used to wear heels all the time from high school until just about when I got married, so I haven't worn them in the last eight years and I can REALLY tell when I do wear them, but I love heels, especially a nice platform one ('cause they make me taller.) But I also think they look a bit nicer when wearing a suit for an interview.

I know that it is a random thing to want, but all of my cute paper and cards are in the box that we shipped to Leeds, but that box hasn't arrived yet! I have people I want to write to, but I can't unless I get more paper.

This one is a bit more practical. I had a very nice black canvas messenger bag, that had a cream brocade (East Asian style), that was really pretty to look at, but! It couldn't even hold a regular sized notebook, it wasn't wide enough, so, I sold it in our big sale and I need something else. The husband got me one from the Leeds Business school, but it isn't very sturdy so I don't think it will last long.

You won't believe how hard this is find here. I've only seen it in one store and I bought the five rolls that they had. It doesn't look like they are going to get any more so I'll have to find it some place else or buy it online.

Currently watching:

Apparently you can't get this on the UK Amazon, isn't that weird.

Currently reading:

As Much as a Rat's Tail: Korean Slang, Invective & Euphemism by Peter Nicholas Liptak and Si Woo Lee

This book is great. It is all about Korean slang, and it is really helpful since a lot of the slang is contraction of combined words. So 강추 (gang chu) means "it rocks," but it is an abbreviation of 강력추천 (gangryok chucheon) which means something more closely to being strongly recommended. A good read if you are learning Korean.

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Saturday, September 14, 2013

I'll fly away

We leave to go to England tomorrow (aka in about 14 hours since my insomnia is keeping me up.) I am nervous and anxious, but I am also excited and and full of anticipation for the adventure.

We sold our car right before leaving California and tomorrow we are turning off our phones. We are staying in a hotel right now, but we will continue to be homeless until we find a place to rent.

Luckily most of our things have already been packed up and sent on ahead, or I would probably be running around like crazy. Instead we have been able to enjoy the last few days and tour some of New York (West Point, bits of Sleepy Hollow and Tarry Town) and New York City. We took a dinner cruise of New York City, but we also drove downtown and saw the sights.

It is almost 2:30am. I am going to try to sleep.

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Thursday, September 12, 2013


I came back from Dragon*Con sick. I am actually still sick. I didn't find any of the things that I would have wanted to buy, which I guess is just as well since we really don't have the space for extra stuff.

We left California on the 10th, and we are in New York until the 15th. We are living in hotel rooms until then, but we still have to find a place to live once we get to England on the 16th.

I don't know when we will get a permanent internet connection, so updates may be spotty until then.

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Wednesday, August 14, 2013

5 things I would like to find at Dragon*Con

1. A good shirt to go with my costume. I have one, but it is black and I would like something in a different color, so it would stand out against the black of the skirt and bodice. I have one picked out, but it wouldn't arrive in time for the convention, so if I find something better I would like to get it.

2. Bloomers or a good underskirt. I need something to go under my skirt, perhaps a white underskirt or white bloomers. I have bloomers picked out, ones that match the shirt above, but again for the same reason, not enough time to arrive for the convention.

3. A parasol. I would like to get a good solid parasol, if not I have this one picked out, I don't prefer a lace parasol, but I do like the way the dye is on the lace. Unfortunately they old ship within the US. I might have to get my Father to ship it to me in Leeds, if I don't find something I like more at the convention.

4. Cuffs for the wrist seem to be becoming a very popular steampunk accessory. I would like to find some blue leather and lace ones, or figure out how to make them myself, or I might consider getting archer's bracers. I haven't found anything that I like yet, so there is a lot of opportunity here.

5. I would like a belt of some kind, preferably black leather, something I could hang accessories off of. Right now I am using a belly dancing belt that I reclaim, but it is all metal and bells, and not nice to fabric, it likes to snag on things. So, I would like to find something that I could hang my fan on, or a tea cup, a parasol or whatever.

Those are my wish things right now. I'm sure I will be tempted a lot at Dragon*Con, but I have a limited budget and limited space for shipping things to England.

I need to develop my character a bit more, and figure out how to do my hair or practice putting up my hair.

Currently watching:
The Human Condition Episode 2 Season 2: Living without creating trash. This is a great Korean variety show that has 6 comedians living together for a week doing different things, like living without cellphones, electricity, or water. It shows how much modern societies waste.

Currently reading:

Little Women by Louisa May Alcott

Such a great classic. I hope Jasmine enjoys it too when she is older.

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Taking mini-vacations

We've been back several weeks now from our trip to Oklahoma. Jasmine and I had a great time. We stopped at the Grand Canyon on our way out to see my Father, we didn't do the Skywalk, because it was $187 for me and Jasmine and no cameras allowed. That was just too much money, so we went to Guano Point instead. On the way back from my Father's we stopped at the Petrified Forest we didn't get to stay long since it was getting dark and it started raining, Meteor Crater right after we got up, so it was early in the morning, but still hot, a Deer Farm the deer were a bit pushy, but Jasmine got to hold a baby wallaby and she was enchanted with him, Bearizona Jasmine loved being able to drive through the wildlife park, and Hoover Dam on the way back. We had a pretty good time. I don't know if I will get a chance to upload any pictures, but if I remember I will try to.

We have about a month left in the U.S. Saturday we leave to go to Las Vegas and see my Mother for a week, then we'll go to Carson City and spend Jasmine's birthday with her school friends and my mother-in-law. We'll drop Jasmine back off with my mother-in-law while we attend Dragon*Con, after that we will go to New York for five days and leave from New York to go to Leeds.

My new passport arrived and soon we are going to go get the husband and Jasmine's visas.

We have tickets to Leeds already, leaving from New York, but we still need to sell the cars and bed and not a lot of time left. My anxiety is high. My internet is not good and we don't have a lot of time left, not sure if I'll get to do any more updates.

Currently watching:
Who Are You (후아유): Only up to episode 6, because that is all that has been released. I think they are on a Monday/Tuesday schedule, 2 episodes a week. It is really good so far.

Good Doctor (굿 닥터): On episode 3, only 4 have been released. I like the main character, an autistic doctor, but what I don't like is how the other characters keep saying that he can be cured.

The Blade and Petal (칼과 꽃): On episode 3 of this too, 13 have been released. This is a bit slow going, I'm waiting for the action to pick up.

Currently reading:

I thought this book would be more science-fiction, so it is a bit disappointing that it is not progressing the way that I thought it would.

Freak of Nature by Julia Crane

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Thursday, July 11, 2013

Convention goers beware

I've attended a fair number of Renaissance Faires and conventions in my life. When I was in my teens and in my twenties I went with friends or with co-workers. Now in my thirties I attend with my husband. Jasmine attended her first convention this last May at Nova Albion. I don't know if she will want to attend Faires or conventions when she gets older, but I would like to think that we, as her parents, will have taught her how to take care of herself if she chooses to attend a faire or convention alone.

I think I myself have either been very lucky or very obtuse, I don't think anyone has ever tried to harass me, but that doesn't mean that someone won't try in the future.

If you are ever harassed at a convention (this post deals specifically with being harassed at a convention, but I think the advise could be applied and used at a Ren Fair too,) Jim C. Hines has made a great post on who and how to report the harassment. Reporting Sexual Harassment in SF/F, 2013 Edition.

I know in an ideal world people wouldn't attend faires or conventions alone, but that isn't always possible, especially if someone needs to go in order to make business connections. I have no idea where I was going with this I seem to have lost my train of thought, but I guess what I mean to say is be aware of your surroundings, even if you yourself aren't being harassed you might spot someone else being harassed and then you can step-in as a witness. And, yes, men can be harassed too.

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Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Dragon*Con Shirts

I need some opinions. I got a steampunk costume for Dragon*Con. It has a black underskirt with white lace, a blue taffeta bustle, and a black bodice with white lace and blue inserts, but I need a shirt. I have 3 that I picked out, thinking about the heat and humidity of Atlanta at the end of August, and that I will already be wearing several layers, plus I wanted something that I could possibly wear in the future.

Here are the links to each shirt, I would be purchasing the shirt in white, but which looks nicer?

I think this one would be the coolest in the heat, but as you can see you have to have something to wear underneath or cover up with (which I would be using the bodice) not something that could be worn on it's own:

I like this one, but I wonder if it looks too stuffy when not paired with steampunk items:

This one has a blue ribbon that would match the bustle and inserts on the bodice (this is actually supposed to be an undershirt):

I would love to hear comments and opinions!


Currently reading:

A Job From Hell (Ancient Legends #1) by Jayde Scott

I got this as a free kindle, it is another vampire book, not sure why I keep picking only vamp books out to read recently. It is holding my attention, but I did enjoy Blood Calling much more.

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We have been living in California for almost a week. Most of it has been hot and miserable. Where we are has been going through a heat wave.

In about a week Jasmine and I will be driving to Oklahoma. We will be making a few stops along the way to see some family and friends. We will be driving all of the things that we want to keep, but don't want to ship to England, to my Dad's home. He will store them for us while we are gone. It will probably be a four day drive, a week-long stay and a four day drive back.

After that we have about a two week rest and have to go see my mom for a week, fly back to Carson and celebrate Jasmine's birthday. We will drive back to California and wait a couple of days to drive back to Carson to drop Jasmine off with the mother-in-law. Then the husband and I will be flying to Dragon*Con in Atlanta... in August. Phew... I can already feel the heat and humidity.

About two weeks after that we will be off to Leeds. Our time in the USA is ending quickly, yet slowly at the same time.

July 9, 2013

AHHHHH! Never mind what I wrote about Oklahoma. Jasmine and I were in a car accident today. We are completely fine, but the car is not. I'm not sure how we are going to Oklahoma, but right now I am not driving the car.

I at least got to mail off the renewal of my passport, but that was really the only thing I accomplished today.

I better publish this post before something else happens.

Currently Reading:

Blood Calling (The Blood Calling Series, Book 1) by Joshua Grover-David Patterson

I got this as a free kindle and read it. It is a pretty good story, good enough that I would pay to read the next book. It is about vampires, but has a re-imagining of their purpose in the world.

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Thursday, June 20, 2013

Ripple blanket using Bernat Baby Coordinates

The next-door-neighbor lady is supposed to have a baby some time next month, but she looks like she will have it any time soon. This is her fourth child, but it has been five years since her last child.

I used Bernat Baby Coordinates in Buddy Blue and White for this blanket. Buddy Blue ranges from a dark, medium and light blues to a blue-green.

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Thursday, May 30, 2013

And moving on

Well, we finally closed on the house on the 3rd of May. It is completely gone and sold. We are now at a friend's house, all of our stuff squished into one room. The husband is back from California.

A few plans have changed, we may be leaving in 3 to 6 weeks to go to California until the husband retires. The husband interviews tomorrow (okay, it has been long enough since I first started typing this that the interview occurred over a week ago and the husband did get the assistanceship!) to see if he will teach (well, be a TA), if he gets the job then we will leave some time after September 19th, he will start on the 24th. That doesn't give us a lot of time to get to England and settle in. If he doesn't get the job I think we will be going with our original plan and not leave until the end of November, but I don't know if we will stay the whole time in California.

Some things are settled, but a lot of things are still up in the air. It is a stressor, or at least for me it is.

I am taking a few courses with Coursera. They are free, taught through various universities, community style (videos and forums.) Right now I am taking "Crafting an Effective Writer: Tools of the Trade," to brush up on my English grammar, and "Introduction to Art: Concepts & Techniques," just for fun. As you can see some of the English homework has made its way here since the teachers wanted it to be hosted online, I don't know why.

There's also a class called "English Common Law: Structure and Principles," starting in a couple of days, figured I needed to brush up a little bit on English law before we moved. I am also enrolled in: "Archaeology's Dirty Little Secrets," sounded like fun and I have enjoyed the few archaeology (luckily I already spell that the British way) classes I have taken for college; "Fantasy and Science Fiction: The Human Mind, Our Modern World," I normally only read Fantasy or Science Fiction, although I am currently really into steampunk, I also enjoy writing and normally write in fantasy settings; "Art and Inquiry: Museum Teaching Strategies For Your Classroom," okay, I don't teach, so I don't know how useful this information would be, but I figured that it couldn't hurt to learn it; "From the Big Bang to Dark Energy," Astronomy! If I was better at math I would want to be an astronomer... or a chemist, probably a chemist, then I could blow stuff up; "From the Repertoire: Western Music History through Performance," music, not sure what else to say about this class beyond that I like music; "Live!: A History of Art for Artists, Animators and Gamers," another art class, not sure how useful this one will be either, but it sounded interesting; "Confronting The Big Questions: Highlights of Modern Astronomy," another astronomy class, yay!

Some of the universities hosting the classes are big, famous universities, like Brown University, and the classes aren't all at the same time, for example, the "Confronting The Big Questions: Highlights of Modern Astronomy" class isn't until next year. But if you complete the class you get a certificate of some kind, I don't know what kind yet because I am only on my first class.

The lovely Gail Carriger is have a contest for an Advanced Reader Copy (ARC) of Curtsies & Conspiracies, which is set to come out November 5th. Curtsies & Conspiracies is the second book of the Finishing School series. I have had Etiquette & Espionage in my Currently Reading section before, but it will show up there again, since I will need to refresh my memory to write the 60 word review. The contest ends June 10th, you can find the rest of the rules here.

Currently reading:

The Iron Butterfly (The Iron Butterfly Series) by Chanda Hahn

This is the book that my FB book reading group picked. It is a free kindle, I've had it for a week, but I've only managed to get to page 10. Hopefully things will settle down soon.

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Week 3 Journal 1 and 2

L and K are fighting again.
S and R are watching television.
They are ignoring the fighting kids.
The house is often noisy when L and K are here.
The house is especially noisy on Sundays when the whole family and neighbors are visiting.
I do not like loud sounds.

L and K race through the house when the get home.
They are often screaming at each other at the same time.
The noise rarely stops when they are home.

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Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Week 2 Journal 1 and 2

5-10 nouns from a scene:

Living Room

5-10 adjectives from a scene:

5-10 verbs from a scene:

5-10 adverbs from a scene:

Every night my roommates fall asleep on their large couch in the living room.
Every night my roommates watch t.v. loudly in the living room.
My roommates never fall asleep in their bed.
I often read in dim light.
We will all go to bed soon.

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Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Assorted news

It has been busy here. We finally have a closing date on the house. The estate sale is this Saturday and then the close is the first week of May.

On April 27 we will be attending Nova Albion, a steampunk convention. I want to see Gail Carriger, and hopefully get a few books signed, and I would like to hear Ay-leen from Beyond Victoriana speak, hopefully specifically about Asians in the steampunk world, since I am half-Korean I know most people identify me as Asian only.

The husband is presenting a paper at Dragon*Con at the end of August, so we will be attending all four days of that. We are going to dress up, all the more reason to listen to Ay-leen, I would like to try to do Korean steampunk for one of the outfits, but I don't know how it will go.

Then at the end of November or the beginning of December we will be leaving and moving to Leeds, UK. The husband was officially accepted. We have a little bit over seven months left, we are renting out a room with some friends, I kind of want it all done. We will only be in Leeds for three years. Just enough time for Jasmine to pick up a British accent and then get put in Speech classes like I was.

Currently reading:

Etiquette & Espionage (Finishing School) by Gail Carriger

This is the first book in a new series by Gail Carriger. I have read it before, but it is worth rereading, and refreshing the memory before seeing the illustrious author.

Currently watching:
Gu Family Book (구가의 서)
The synopsis from Can a man born to a human mother and a mythical-creature father find a way to become a real human and live the life he desperately desires? Choi Kang Chi is a gumiho (a fox with nine tails) whose mother is Yoon Seo Hwa, a human, who fell in love with Gu Wal Ryung, the guardian god of the Jiri Mountains. Chased by their enemies, Seo Hwa sends Kang Chi in a basket down the river so that he will not be captured. The Choi family finds baby Kang Chi floating in the river and raise him. Kang Chi discovers his true identity by chance one day, and he becomes determined to become a real human. Can Dam Yeo Wool, a master martial artist and archer, help him in his quest? “Gu Family Book,” also known as “Ancient Medical Book,” “The Writings of Nine Houses” and “Book of the House of Gu,” is a 2013 South Korean historical drama series directed by Shin Woo Chul, an award-winning director who also directed “A Gentleman’s Dignity” (2012), “Secret Garden” (2010), and “City Hall” (2009).

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Sunday, March 24, 2013

2PM One Point Hangul episodes 1-5

2PM is my favorite idol group from Korea. The guys are funny, so it makes watching almost everything they do enjoyable while I try to learn Korean.

This series is actually for Japanese people to learn Korean, but the guys speak Korean mostly during each episode, so it can be really useful if you are trying to learn Korean.

I have copied down the Korean that is to learn, but I did not translate these episodes, that was done by Wild2Day, I just wanted to make it easier to follow the lesson by not having to stop the video every few seconds. I didn't add any romanization because I just didn't know if I should, but I put the Korean in large font for easier reading. I am not an expert, I am learning Korean myself.

Edit: March 2, 2015 I was able to find all the videos for this page, except episode 1. I couldn't even find it without subs, so if you happen to find it please leave a comment with a link to the video, thanks. The translations on the new videos are from rikakotsu @JunkayStreet, my writing is from the original translations I got from Wild2Day, so they may not match rikakotsu's.

Here is episode 1:

??? I can't find the video.

Nice to meet you.

만나서 반갑습니다.
It is a pleasure to meet you.

Nice to meet you (less formal.)

Lesson 2:

That's/It's okay.

맛이 괜찮아요?
Does it taste okay?

Lesson 3:

Please give me this.

Please give me that.

Please give me that (to an object that is far away.)

Lesson 4:

악수 해주세요.
Please shake my hand.

사인 해주세요.
Please give me your autograph/signature.

Is short for signature.

제 이름 써주세요.
Please write my name.

Lesson 5:

일본어 팜플렛 있어요?
Do you have a Japanese pamphlet?


일본어 메뉴 있어요?
Do you have a Japanese menu?

일본어 있어요?
Do you have a Japanese one?

Means Japanese language, so the 일본어 part of the sentence can be switched out for a different language and you can make new sentences easily.

English language = 영어

French language = 프랑스어

German language = 독일어

Spanish language = 스페인어

EDIT: March 30, 2014 Wild2Day has removed all of their videos. I will try to find new ones and link to them.

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Friday, March 22, 2013

Korean Dramas and Movies

I love watching Korean dramas and movies. Some can be boring and repetitive, but mostly they are kind of funny and charming in their own way. Apparently I like the high school ones and arranged marriage ones. Here is a list of the dramas and movies I have seen. If you know of any good ones to watch let me know!

18 vs. 29 (열여덟 스물아홉) This was a good one, but a bit slow in some parts.
Air City (에어시티 ) unfortunately I could not get pass the first episdoe, it just didn't draw me in.
All My Love (몽땅 내사랑 ) I started it, but haven't finished it, 210 episdoes is a lot to watch. JoKwon is of course hilarious.
Arang and the Magistrate (아랑사또전) this was a really good one and it showed how Koreans view death and ghosts. Really interesting.
Assorted Gems (aka Jewel Bibimbap) (보석비빔밥) this is a 50 episode show, but it goes pretty fast. There aren't a lot of flashbacks like in Dae Jang Geum, which makes it a lot easier to watch. The characters are interesting and there is a bit to learn about Korean drama writers since one of the main characters is one. But the last episode I felt was horribly rushed and a bit was left unexplained.
Bad Man (나쁜 남자) I only got to episdoe 3. I really want to like it and watch more, mostly because of Kim Jae Wook, but I really don't like it.
Big (빅) this show was really good, but the ending was too vague for me.
Cheongdamdong Alice (청담동 앨리스) I am currently watching this, on episode 9! (EDIT:8/8/2013) The show started off well, but it really dragged towards the middle. The last four or five episodes were really hard for me to get through.
Cinderella's Sister (신데렐라 언니) I only got to episode 3, which is too bad since 2PM's Taecyeon doesn't appear until episode 5.
City Hunter (시티헌터) This was a great show. My husband didn't even complain too much, normally he whines the whole time I am watching a Korean show.
Coffee Prince (커피프린스 1호점) This one was fun, but I don't know why the main character Go Eun Chan, didn't come out and say she was a girl right away. There seems to be a genre of girls dressing as boys and have a boy fall in love with the girl while thinking that she is a he. Very strange.
Dae Jang Geum (aka Jewel in the Palace) (대장금) This is a very long show, 54 episdoes. The problem with watching Korean dramas all in a row is that that is not how they are viewed in Korea. They show one episode a day and you get maybe two episodes a week. So, with the longer running shows they will show flashbacks to make sure the audience hasn't forgotten things that happened in the beginning of the show. It happens more and more often towards the end of the show. So, watching them all in a row I had to fast forward a lot. But it was a really interesting show, I did like seeing all the cooking, since court cooking is extravagant. And really it is hard to believe there was ever a time when Korea didn't have red chili peppers to use in their cooking.
Delightful Girl Choon Hyang (쾌걸 춘향) This show is loosely based on the legend of Choon Hyang, but set in modern times. It is another high school show.
Dream High (드림하이) I really enjoyed this show and the cast is full of ideols (2PM's Taecyeon and Wooyoung, Miss A's Suzy, IU and even more have cameos throughout the episodes.) This show was very easy to watch.
Dream High 2 (드림하이 시즌2) This show had the same amount of idols, but it didn't have as good of a story line, it just fell kind of flat. I couldn't really root for any of the characters, they were mostly all shallow.
Faith (aka The Great Doctor) (신의) Loved this show! I was waiting very eagerly for this show to be subbed every time there was a new episode. Lee MinHo (이민호) is a great actor. I do wish there had been a bit more between the two main actors in the last scene, but it was a great show.
Flower Boy Ramen Shop (꽃미남 라면가게) I did watch this show, but for me it was a bit hard to get through. I really can't believe that any grown woman (25) would fall for a high schooler (I believe he is 17 at the beginning of the show.) It doesn't make sense to me.
Full House (풀하우스) I started watching this, but didn't finish it, because I went on vacation and when I came back I couldn't remember what website I was watching it on. I think it was, but I'm not sure. I need to check. It has Rain (비) in it.
Goong (aka Princess Hours) (궁) This is the first Korean drama that I can ever remember watching. This is a show that I have watched over, a couple of times, and still enjoy it.
Goong S (aka Prince Hoo) (궁S) I think I only watched two or three episodes. I couldn't get into the show at all. It lacks the cuteness of the first Goong and the story line isn't related to the first Goong at all. The characters are all different.
Gu Family Book (구가의 서) Great! Great! The story was so good, I don't know why k-netizens were complaining about Suzy's acting. Choi Jin Hyuk had a great voice and presence as Gu Wol Ryeong.
Iljimae (일지매) I haven't been able to finish this one yet, only on episode five, because the rest of the episodes haven't been subtitled. But so far the store is interesting. It is a historical drama, but it doesn't have just nobility characters.
In-Soon is Pretty (인순이는 예쁘다) I cannot remember how far I got into this series, maybe episode three or four.  It was too depressing, I couldn't finish it.  Nothing ever goes right for the main character.
Marry Stayed out all Night (매리는 외박중) This was a cute show with Moon Geun Young, Jang Geun Suk and Kim Jae Wook.  It was a bit slow in some parts, but rather easy to watch.
My Girlfriend is a Gumiho (내 여자친구는 구미호) This was a bit fun, a bit sad, and some times a bit tedious.  No Min Woo was great in it though, and I wish they would have explained a bit more on the background of his character.
Obsetrics and Gynecology Doctors (산부인과 여의사)  Song Joong Ki was really cute in this drama.  It is too bad that his character is so ruled by his parents, he dumps his girlfriend because of his parents and then tries to get back together with her once his parents find out that her family won the lottery (but his parents don't know that it is the same girl.
Pasta (파스타) Another show where I am not quite sure how the main female and male character end up together.  The male character played by Lee Sun Gyun treats the female character, played by Gong Hyo Jin, horribly.  He fires her several times and is always in a bad mood around her, but some how she falls for him and his bad temper means he likes her?  This seems to happen a lot in Korean dramas.  Any way, No Min Woo is in this show too, as a minor character, but he plays a drums only cover of 2PM's Heartbeat (you can see it here, be forewarned he is topless, .) Ah, I kind of miss him dressing up as a girl.
Playful Kiss (장난스런 키스) I thought that this was a really cute show.  It is based on the manga Itazura na Kiss (イタズラな Kiss) and stars Kim Hyun Joong of SS501 fame.  Kim Hyun Joong's character is supposed to be a super nerd, althetic and cute.  Oh Ha Ni is the character that likes him, but she is rather dumb (and kind of annoying at times), clumsy and supposed to be plain.  I don't know why this show didn't do well in Korea, but I know it was very popular with international fans.
Sunkyunkwan Scandal (성균관 스캔들) This show was interesting at times, it shows what women were allowed and not allowed to due during the Joseon Dynasty.  It could be slow at times, but it had Soong Joong Ki and of course he was cute.
Tamra the Island (탐나는 도다) Set in what is in modern times Jejudo. (Jeju Special Self-governing Province) (제주특별자치도) For me this was a hard series to watch.  I don't understand why they had Pierre Deporte portray an English man instead of a French man, since he is duh! a French man, even if his Korean is really good.  I don't know if it is because the show had an archic dialect, but I could not get into it at all.  I think I stopped after the third or fifth episode.
The Moon that Embraces the Sun (해를 품은 달)  I only watched the parts that had the main characters as kids, they were really cute, the rest of the show hadn't been subtitled at that point.  I am sure if I go back now they will be done, just have to find the time.
Tree with Deep Roots (뿌리깊은 나무) I started this on, but I didn't finish. Not because I didn't like it, but because the rest of the episodes didn't have subtitles yet. I will have to go back and see if any more of it is done. It is about King Sejong, the credited inventor of the Korean writing system and about the conspiracy surrounding the king at that time.
You're Beautiful (미남이시네요) I think this is the first drama I watched that had Jang Geun Suk and/or Park Shin Hye in it.  I liked the show and enjoyed it, but I didn't understand Shin Hye's character at all.  Geun Suk's character is such a grump.  I think if Shin Woo, Jung Young Hwa's character, had actually gotten so real nerve up sooner that she would have ended up with him, and probably been happier in the long run.
Who Are You (후아유) I think this is Taecyeon's third drama, not sure. It is the third drama I've seen with So Yi Hyun, she was my favorite sister in Assorted Gems. Kim Jae Wook is also in it, hasn't appeared very much yet, only the 4th episode has been released.

200 Pounds Beauty (미녀는 괴로워)  This movie is a bit disturbing, I think mainly because it shows how Korean people deal with idol culture and plastic surgery culture.
Baby and Me (아기와 나) A cute movie with Jang Geun Suk (You're Beautiful) as a teenager.  A baby is dropped off at his house with a note saying that he is the baby's dad.  Fun to watch, not serious at all.
Il Mare (시월애)  Keanu Reeves and Sandra Bullock started in the 2006 remake called The Lake House.  I watched the full move of The Lake House, but I honestly cannot remember if I watched all of Il Mare.  I might have to go back later and watch it again.
Mr Idol (Mr. 아이돌 ) About and idol group's reunion.  The only actor in the movie who is actually is an idol is Jay Park, he was in the idol group 2PM before he dropped out.  A enjoyable movie, but there are a tone of things the actors do to "train" that I don't believe idols do.
My Little Bride (어린 신부)  This movie is kind of cute, but at times it is just really creepy.  Also, my husband thinks that Moon Geun Young's face is really messed up.  I have to admit some times I think she is either cross-eyed or wall-eyed.  Sorry "Korean nation's little sister."

There are a ton of new shows coming out, or have already started that I want to watch, but I think I need to finish some of the ones I have already started before adding anything new.

Currently Reading:

The Eye of the World: Book One of 'The Wheel of Time' by Robert Jordan

I tried reading this book once before, but I really couldn't get into reading it.  I am trying again with my book club, we'll see how it goes.

P.S. I can't find my camera, so mad.  It has all the pictures I have taken on how to make various Korean recipes.  I might have to start over if I don't find it soon.

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Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Moving along

February 20, 2013
I really had planned on posting so much more often this year, but it just isn't working out.

Our house is on the market right now, you can buy it if you want to.  We are in the process of moving the things that we want to keep to the place that we will live temporary, and trying to sell the things that we don't want to keep.  There were 3 showings Saturday, 2 yesterday and there is one later today, but there are already 4 bids in on the house.  Which is great I guess, but we won't see any of the money, so I'm not sure if I really care.  We need to see about selling the things that we aren't going to keep and I am worried we won't have enough time for that.

We cancelled Jasmine's taekwondo classes, the drive would just be too much, but we might see if we can put her in ballet classes instead.  I don't think she will miss the taekwondo classes.  It isn't that she hated them or didn't like them, she just likes other things better.

We will live in Dayton temporarily with some friends while we find out where we are going next.

February 27, 2013
As you can see I got distracted again.  Well, we have signed to sell our house.

March 19, 2013
OMG.  I might as well give up on this and just post it.

We have been busy.  We spent a week in Charleston, SC, and a weekend in San Ramon, CA.

So, we signed on selling the house, the bank finally approved it, now we have sixty days to move out.  I am not sure if the sixty days started from when we first signed to sell or if it is from today.

Since we are moving all of my books nowadays are either ebooks or from the library.

Currently reading:

UnEnchanted: An Unfortunate Fairy Tale by Chanda Hahn

Got this book as a free kindle book, but there is the paperback edition.  It is a quick and fun read, there are a few, minor, personal issues with the book, but overall enjoyable and I do like a good retelling of fairy tales.

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