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Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Legal Research and Writing for Paralegals by Deborah E. Bouchoux

The book which will take my attention starting June 6
I have a summer school. I have a total of 4 textbook. Since grade is not an issue, although I would prefer not to mar my grade point average at this point, I was thinking of only getting 2. The others I will see if the library will loan me an older edition of that book.

This summer will be the first classes my husband and I take together. I sure hope it won't create problems for us. I am very competitive. I think he is, too. However, I like to win and I also have this desire to make my husband happy. What if the two does not coincide comes exam time?

For example, I would totally hate it if I make a grade less than he does. However, I know we are playing on his arena. He's an old hand at all things legal and philosophical. I've always been more of a hard core science. I don't know what made me decide law as the next option. Only that I know I can be good at anything that I set my mind to do.

After about 18 months of contemplation and preparation, here we are. About to take a class together. Wish us luck. Better yet, wish me with a maturity that will make me graceful if I make higher grade (and not cackle like a witch), and even more grace if I make grade less than my darling husband (that is going to be hard because as I said, I like to excel).

The book looks pretty comprehensive, and a bit intimidating. But I think that's because I haven't taken a class like this before. I'll let you know how it goes. The class is only 4 weeks long.

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Macro for iPhone

My husband surprised me today with an accessory for my iPhone. He was actually pushing for me to get iPhone 4s, but considering that I just bought my iPhone 4 less than a year after 4s came out, it seem like a ridiculously exorbitant idea. We're waiting for the next newest one to come instead.

Today, my husband stopped by Fryes and bought me OlloClips. It comes with a macro lens examples are below.

my engagement/wedding ring
another dandelion
Here's a fish-eye picture below. It's rather weird. Don't you find this angle strange?

Here's the wide angle lens picture. It takes a good picture. Overall verdict, I think I'll keep this OlloClips for a bit. It seem like a good addition to my iPhone.

Monday, May 28, 2012

Highland Lover by Amanda Scott

Title: Highland Lover
Author: Amanda Scott
Series: Highland Knights
Grand Central Publishing

Lady Alyson McGillivray travelled with her husband on a sea voyage. She was hoping she could get to know her husband better.  However, on the ship, she makes a shocking discovery. The future king of Scotland, James, is traveling with them. It was nearly impossible to spend any alone time with her husband on board the ship as her husband was busy running errands and command of some other guy friend he has. When the ship was overrun with pirates, some people died and the future king was kidnapped. Lady Alyson believed her husband died that night. She would have died too were it not for a little boy named Will and Jake.

The Wolf, as he is famously known, has been commissioned by the king to follow his son on his journey. While he wasn't fortunate enough to prevent the kidnapping, he was able to save Alyson on that fateful night. Her ship was broken and it was about to sink when she was rescued by The Wolf. They feel mutual desire and attraction. In fact, more attraction and desire than she feel with anyone else before.

I like the progression of the story. I get lost in it and nothing to jar me out of my revelry. I like the surprise. I like the heroine's spirit and character. I like Jake, too. He's funny, and seem unflappable. I like him from Highland Hero. Spoiler alert down below...

The only sad part of the story for me is they never found James, the future king. Historical fact said that he was an English captive for more than 18 years.  I would have like to hear about him. If this book were a movie, every scene he appeared, he'd have stolen it. I like a good historical romance. This is one. I learn something new and got entertained in return.

Have you taken a close look at the cover? I know I have. I only flipped and gaze at it every other chapter. I love that cover. It's very attractive. It's like watching Thor (from the movie Avengers) walking around half-clothed, or watching Captain America playing a naked neighbor in some other movie. It's thrilling! Come on, take a look at it again? I love that face....and here I am wondering....where is the body that goes with that face?!

My book is an ARC. Thank you to Ms. Reese for my copy.

Sunday, May 27, 2012

1L of a Ride by Andrew J. McClurg

Title: 1L of a Ride
Author: Andrew J. McClurg
Published 2008; 420 pages
Publisher: Thompson/West
When I receive a letter from Texas Wesleyan about starting law school in the Fall, I wanted to find a book which will give me a glimpse of what life might be like in just a few weeks. One of the books I bought on my Kindle is this book. This book has a 5-star rating out of 62 reviewers in Amazon. That's good enough for me. I wanted a 'glimpse' and I wanted clues. Andrew McClurg delivers both. In fact, this book is quite helpful, I am thinking of owning the paperback edition, too.

This book starts out with introduction about subjects any first year law student will take. There's always that core 6-7 classes. He gives summary about each one. I think I might already like tort, and I'm not even in law school yet. I'm dreading the writing class, so I'm taking a summer class at a local community college just to get in more practice. I never did get that hang of writing technical things. And I couldn't get more technical than writing things while in law school. Right?

I like what he said about classes. I like the hints and clues. The Top Five Habits of  Successful Students he listed in chapter 10 is especially eye-opening for me.

C.R.E.D.O. Meaning consistent, rigorous, efficient, deligent, organized 

I just have to make sure to be even more organized than I am now. I hope to consult this book when I start law school. For now, I'm enjoying the birds-eye view of it. There's a whole chapter on note-taking, briefing a case, exam-taking and more. This guy knows what he's talking about. He's only been teaching tort for a long time. How helpful is this book? I'll know for sure when I'm there.

Port Aransas

We went to Port Aransas for Spring Break. It was a fun trip because the beach does not get too crowded like they do in South Padre Island. We went to Mustang Island instead aka North Padre Island. We rented this gorgeous condo. It was warm enough we have no need for a fireplace, but electric fireplaces would have added a romantic ambiance to the place. See that blue console on the second picture? It would make for a perfect spot.  Otherwise, it's quite perfect as it was. We got the birds-eye view from the top floor.  It was a memorable Spring Break trip. One that I hope to repeat.

My Girl

Last summer, before my daughter started taking violin lessons, she was taking guitar lessons from this nice guitarist brother-in-law of our piano teacher.  She loved it.  The guy used to be an arranger for the same band where Mike Shenoda plays drum.  Unfortunately, his family moved to Arkansas, and we haven't found anyone to replace him.  We did know that any fender acoustic guitars for sale then.  The one she owned was made by the same name.  It's like Dr. Pepper is made by Pepsi.  She still plays in her little electric guitar, mostly famous riffs from Led Zeppelin, My Chemical Romance and Linkin Park.  She doesn't have much time to do that now though because she's taking piano and violin lessons.  I know her interest changes from time to time, but when she's into a certain something, she gives it all her heart.  That's what makes her so good at anything and everything she tries.  She has this genuine interest and honest curiosity, and unfettered enthusiasm.  You go girl!

Friday, May 25, 2012

Field Day

Field Day at my children's school
I had no idea what I let myself into today. My children said it's Field Day. they have these colorful shirts to wear - yellow, purple and orange for different grades. I have never been to a Field Day because when I have a little baby, it's the last thing I want to do.  So, I'm sad to have realized how much I missed. There were many activities. They all get ribbons for participating. It's both fun and irritating and eye-opening. They have 100 meter dashes, water balloon toss, jump roping. What they didn't have is yomega, a battle for the best yo-yo player. It might be because it's not physical enough. But if they add jumping on one foot while playing yo-yo, it would be a fun event, I think. My 6 years old was a little sad not to get any of the 'blue ribbon,' which means you won 'first' place. There's also two events where they can earn ribbons alone. Most of the field day events are team efforts. We all know that a team can only go as fast as the slowest person in the group. I think at the end of the day, I was able to make him understand that team work is important. Yes, he didn't get a first place ribbon, but he worked well with his team. That is a good start, I think.

Wednesday, May 23, 2012

What I'm Reading Now

Title: Lethal Rider
Author: Larissa Ione
Series: Lords of Deliverance
Grand Central/ Paranormal Romance
444 pages

Title: Viral
Author: James Liliefors
Soho Press/Crime Prodecural
336 pages

I get all excited when I open my mail, especially the ones which comes in bigger envelops. They usually bring me some pleasant surprise, like a book or books. Some of the time, it's little things all over the word where my cousins live. I don't think I'll ever be too busy or too old to get excited about surprises in the mail.

I'm reading both of these books now. Review will soon follow. Viral came out in April and Lethal Rider came out on May 22. So, I'm going to disappear for a few hours....after making dinner, as my son reminded me, and read.

When I read paranormal romance, I have to catch the right moment. Sometimes, I couldn't care less about angel this and angel that....but when the mood is right... When the mood is just right, it's the lovelies feeling in the world to hold a book in my hand and diver into demon world...or in this case, the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse.

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel: a movie

the breakfast at La Madeleine
The Best Exotic Marigold Hotel is beyond expectations. I went to see it with my husband today because it looked good on the preview. Guess what? It was so much better than I hope. Tom Wilkinson, Bill Nighy, Judi Dench and Maggie Smith are excellent.

Dev Patel's character, Sonny, have a dream. He also has a habit of seeing what things are going to be, not what they really are at the moment. He advertised his hotel as a place to stay for the "old and beautiful." The characters are finely drawn even though there are many of them. I do not feel like anyone was left out in the telling.

There's Evelyn Greenslade played by Judi Dench. Her husband did not leave her anything to inherit, so she travels to India and blogs while she's at it. We hear her narration throughout the story. There's Douglas Ainsley, who's retirement is tied up in his daughter's Internet company. There's a former judge who used to live in India. He's looking forward to he trip.

Perhaps, my most favorite character is the one played by Maggie Smith. She's a tragedy and a triumph, awkward and funny and I think well developed. She does not want to have anything to people of colors at first. She does not want to try to like India. She's also there for a hip replacement surgery. Outsource surgery is infinitely cheaper than having it done in Britain.

I love the journey that this movie took me though. I would like to see more of this type of film. Btw, my husband and I went to the 10:55 am and we had a lovely breakfast at La Madeleine. Have you tried their egg champaignon and strawberry Romanov? It's delicious. Perfect thing to eat before an early movie.

that entertaining movie you hope to get often; excellent
a view of Northpark,  inside the mall

Monday, May 21, 2012


Shoes from JC Penny

There's something fun about shoes shopping. In fact, when I have nothing to do, I would just hang out at a shoe department near my house. Which reminds me of this empty house which I passed by just about every time I go anywhere. It's been empty for so long, the owners should consider donating a house to charity, that house would be a good candidate. It has been empty for the past 10 years since we moved in this neighborhood. If you believe in Ghost, and how they like quiet empty houses, then this house would be a good example of that. It's a big house, too, at least 1300 square feet. It's tragic to just let it go to waste.


Location: Arbor Hills Nature Preserve

Yesterday, my husband and I are on our computer desks and the children, we have five were in the living room doing a variety of things most of which were electronic-related. He heard the little one (the boy on the left from the picture above) said: Yoel, Yossi, Yoav....gosh, why are there so many Yo's in this house?!

He and I thought that is so funny. I have four boys and a girl. The boys play a lot together. They also have lively disagreements together. I hope their brotherhood will last them throughout their life. They're a close bunch, and I hope that they would always be. I think it's normal to fight now and then. I usually would just listen and let them settle it. I want them to learn how to do that. It's a life skill, I think.

Peace and Quiet

Ft Worth Water Gardens

This is the park across my new Law School.  I can enjoy it if I show up really early for school.  I couldn't see myself hanging out here after my classes, which is at 10 PM.  It's still downtown, you know.  I was struck by the solemnity of the place when it was empty of people on a Monday morning.  On a good news, I am really glad that my 4 boys are walking to shul on Saturdays now.  It's been about 6 years since I went inside for service.  I guess when I fell off the wagon, I just really fall all the way.  What a commitment huh?  Anyway, I went in there to check out the facility for a Bar Mitzvah. I was thinking that they really have wonderful and comfortable seating now, probably got their furniture from church chair. I was amazed. I could see myself sitting there for the longest time and just enjoy the silence. I remember how my back used to hurt sitting on a wooden bench before. This is definitely an improvement.

When a Duke Says I Do by Jane Goodger

Title: When the Duke Says I Do
Author: Jane Goodger

 I just finished reading this book.  My nose is read and my eyes are wet.  Yes, I cried happy tears.  I love the progression of the story.  I love it when a book makes my heart break yet put it all back together with a happy ending.

Elsie is engaged to Oscar. Oscar's father is an overbearing man with immense power. Everyone in the ton is afraid of him. Along comes a painter and Alexander, his mute assistant, to paint a mural on Elsie's ballroom walls. It is all the rage.

Due to Elsie's aversion to sleeping in her bed in her room, her household made a habit of hunting for her in the morning as she falls asleep in every unusual places.  One night she wondered into her ballroom and happened upon the painter's assistant. She talks and talks while he draws and paints. And they fall in love....even though Elsie shouldn't because she's engaged.

While Alexander is not really mute, he has debilitating  condition which makes it impossible for him to speak to his father. His father, believe the boy is an idiot and unworthy, sent him to an asylum for idiots to get rid of him. This is Elsie and Alexander's story. Two souls with unique burdens they carry. Being together makes them whole, but will they be able to surmount the obstacle that stands in their way of everlasting happiness?

This is a story not to be missed if you are a romance fan. It's like Judith McNaught, Elizabeth Hoyt, Jill Barnett, Eloisa James and Julia Quinn all rolled into one. It is such a treat. I will be reading more of this author even though I know I should spend most of my time reading law-related items to get ready for fall.

Sunday, May 20, 2012

Sexiest Vampire Alive by Kerrelyn Sparks

Title: Sexiest Vampire Alive
Author: Kerrelyn Sparks
An Avon Romance Paperback
370 pages, Published 2011
A video reveals that vampires exist among humans.  The humans panicked and so did the vampires. Coven masters all over the United States meet to solve this problem.  Their decision is unanimous.  They are sending Gregori Holstein, VP of Marketing to persuade the US government to declare this video a hoax.  The US President, when convinced that vampires really do exist, made a side deal with the vamps: accompany his daughter, Abby, on a research trip for 48 hours.  Abby and Gregori have strong attractions to each other. However, Abby is quite skeptical about the existence of vampires.

Gregori is a compelling character. He sounds attractive and a genuinely good person.  He goes around with a stress ball which would sometime blowout because of his supernatural strength. He's excellent at his job.  His mother is human who knows about vampires.  Abby on the other hand, is a serious sort of girl. Her mission in life is to save her mother.  On their 'trip' to a remote region in China, Gregori does not require Tourmaster Sonora air because his vampire self is well-regulated.  Abby on the other hand requires all kinds of outer gear for all kind of weather.  When Gregori did something that Abby have already said is a deal-breaker, will their love be strong enough to overcome it?

Sherrelyn Sparks is a delightful author.  I found her books on a library sale. Their covers attractive, the subject compelling for me...I mean, who wouldn't love a vampire tale?  I certainly cannot resist it.  I have half a dozen more of her books on my shelf.

A Cousin's Promise Wanda E Brunstetter

courtesy of Dallas Public Digital Library
via Media Overdrive
Indiana Cousins Series, Book 1
Wayne Lambright and Lorainne Miller are engaged.  They're both religious Amish in their twenties.  A group of their friends and cousins decided to have fun over the long weekend at Hershey's Park.  It's about 6 hours drive for them.  An older cousin drove the group.  On the way to the amusement park, another female cousin  was very jumpy and skittish about stray bees in the car.  She screeches and swats and makes a big out of it.  The second time that happened, the driver made an unfortunate decision to look to see what's going on with the commotion.  Right in that moment, an accident happen. Four people died including the screechy girl's fiance.  I really hope that before this tragedy happened, some have availed themselves to a  no health check life insurance.  Especially the driver who left behind a wife and 4 children.

Wayne survived the accident but lost one of his leg. Because he's stuck on a wheelchair, he thought he should set his fiancee free because he cannot farm anymore. Enter Jake Beechy, Loranne's former boyfriend. Jake went in search for a better life and found it working for a farm in a different state. While he was away, he broke all contact with Lorainne. After months of heartbreak, she fell in love with Wayne. Now Jake is back and Wayne is trying his best to push his ex-fiancée and friend to hook up. Will Wayne succeed?

This is a sweet love story read by Jill Shellabarger.  Not usually the type of book I would pick up and read, but since it was easy to check out on my iPhone overdrive app, I ended up listening to it. There have been many stories where after an hour of  listening, I had to stop because the story is not for me. This one caught my attention and held it all the way to the end. This book leads me to many more stories of this genre.  

Sunday, May 13, 2012

Puss in Boots

I have to admit that I did not see this movie in the theater because I was turned off by kitty in boots. I know it was Antonio Banderas. I had forgotten his very lovely, and super sexy accent. I borrowed this one from Redbox. 

I realized that this is a take off from Shrek. It expanded on Puss in Boot's life. I was enthralled with his story. How he grew up, where he came from. He even had this friend, and they had a huge falling out. I was quite entertained. The action sequence is very good. There's some mystery, a sexy lady, and treasures. My children and I love it.

Thursday, May 10, 2012

Cop to Corpse by Peter Lovesey

Thanks to Ms. Rafferty of Soho Press for my ARC of COP TO CORPSE by Peter Lovesey. It's set to publish in June. It's my introduction to Peter Diamond Series. I enjoyed it thoroughly. It starts out with a bang. A cop, PC Harry Trasker was shot dead. He's the third policeman to die in Bath area. The investigators are going to great lengths to catch the culprit.

Chief Superintendent, Peter Diamond is called to the case, which might turned out to be the most dangerous yet. He's got a couple of close calls. The first one, he was lucky not to die when a motorcycle almost run him through. Peter is an enjoyable character. He's single, as I understand it, his wife/partner died a few books ago. I'm curious how he is with a partner, so I'm going to look at back copies of this series.

The mystery is nicely laid out. I have my suspicions when I met a certain character, but it was camouflage enough that I have so much fun reading the book and finding out for sure whodunit. It's an enjoyable book because I get a lot of local culture. It's almost like a tour of the localities. I haven't been anywhere near UK, but I got a good picture. Peter Lovesey sure paints vivid images of Bath and surrounding area.

There were many twist and turns to the investigations....and I think I got a lucky guess.  This was a character who pretty much dominated the first few pages. He gets on your nerves, but I am invested to find out how he turned out. Unfortunately, he didn't turn out much because he was shot, and stayed that way. He didn't die, so I wonder if Lovesey will visit this annoying character at later books. I found the whole mystery very entertaining. I highly recommend it.

The picture is the copy I's a little bit worn because I had to flattened the binding to read it every where.

Sunday, May 6, 2012

Exit Wounds by J.A. Jance

compliments of my local Public Library

I first fell in love with J.A. Jance with his J.P Beaumont series. I love that series. I remember going on a vacation trip in the Philippines. I found a paperback of JUSTICE FOR ALL and was thrilled to have it since we were going on an overnight ferry right and I need a book to read.

I didn't really warm up to her Joanna Brady series.  I first encountered her in a book J.A. Jance wrote where JP Beaumont had to work on a case with Ms. Brady. I love it! I was almost hoping they would hit it off so I can always read about JP. But that didn't happen.

EXIT WOUNDS is the 11th novel in the Joanna Brady series.  I absolutely adore the suspense of the opening of this story.  A woman with lots of dogs is waiting for a reporter. She's ready to spill all for money, so her dogs can get vaccinated. Then she gets all nervous, ran inside her trailer where she was gunned down.

I didn't like few chapters which followed because it took the Sheriff ages to get back to the dead woman.  I don't dislike the personal stuff. Joanna's mother is a bit whinny. She's also controlling and annoying. I think the Ms. Jance had to tell us what's going on with Joanna's life because this series is primarily about Joanna as a person, and I think her being a sheriff of Cochise County, second.

Stephanie Brush is a good reader. I'm glad to have listened to the book. I might give Ms. Brady's series a look-see since it's entertaining. She's not JP Beaumont, but she's the new game in town. I do enjoy JA Jance's writing.

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

One Night With You by Sophie Jordan

I saw this book in my shelf this morning and decided to read it. This was published in 2008 by Avon Historical Romance. There are 353 pages, in paperback. I love the story. It's about Jane. She's widowed and is now a servant in the house she used to managed. After over a year in mourning, she decided to come out into the society once again. With the help of her two Duchess friends, Lucy and Astrid, she did. However, they went a courtesan's ball. There she found a longtime childhood friend and love, Seth. Her heart palates on seeing him. He's excited by this mystery girl, even though his passions has been dormant for a while.

There's the usual misunderstanding which comes with a love story like this. However, Sophie Jordan had me all teary-eyed right around 3/4 of the book. The emotions ran strong with this book. Julianne, Seth's sister is the secondary story. Her's is also a wonderful story. I read rather fast (I was finished in 2.5 hours) but that's because I am practicing Evelyn Woods method. I'm also supposed to be reading my law books. Classes starts in June and I must be ready. But Ms Jordan's book is irresistible.

I highly recommend this book. Don't miss it. If you live in the US and wants my copy, e-mail me your address, I'll send you this book. The first address on my mailbox gets it. Leave a comment that you intend to. E-mail: thisbookforfree *at* gmail dot com.