Reading more: Brew or Die

book squareBrew or Dieby Caroline Fardig was provided to me by my partnership with NetGalley. The opinions are my own. You can see other books I’ve reviewed here.

Any time one of these Java Jive Mysteries comes up I jump at the chance to read and review them.

I love them.

From  Amazon:

Inspired by her past sleuthing successes, Juliet Langley has officially joined the ranks of Nashville’s licensed private investigators. Her best friend, Pete Bennett, doesn’t worry that her detective work might interfere with her full-time job running his coffeehouse, Java Jive. He just wishes she would spend her free time rejoining the local music scene instead of tailing cheating spouses. But when one of Java Jive’s baristas, Shane, asks Juliet to look into the suspicious death of his fiancee, Pete encourages her to plow full steam ahead. Since his fiancee died on the job, Shane suspects that her party-planning colleagues are up to something criminal-and will do anything to keep it quiet. After Juliet recruits Pete to go undercover with her at a wedding showcase, she discovers that white lace and black satin have a way of hiding big, fat secrets. If that weren’t enough to fill her plate, her latest P.I. job has her crossing paths with her ex, Detective Ryder Hamilton. They’re barely on speaking terms, but to solve the case, they might have to cooperate. No matter where Juliet goes, she’s brewing up trouble.


This one got a little wacky but also did away with a character I didn’t love. Juliet being a PI feels a lot like Stephanie being a bounty hunter. Such a terrible idea it works! I really like how Fardig plays with the settings in each book but keeps the coffee shop home.

Fardig has done a great job continuing to develop the characters and sub plots that weave through the different books. I don’t love what she’s done with some of them, but I see how it’s necessary to do so.

These cozy mysteries are still bubblegum for my brain but at the end of the day, it’s what I like to read right now so that’s just fine by me. I’ll keep reading this series.

Is this something you’d read? Why or why not.


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Friday Coffee quickie

No, not that kind, although I’m not opposed. I’m actually writing this late Thursday night – technically Friday morning but I wanted to make sure I said hi. I do love our Friday chats.

I’m facilitating a training today for new members of the association I work for so I’ll be hitting the ground running as soon as I’m up. I likely will have about 6 cups of coffee. I’ll see about making some of that decaf. Or partially.

I love meeting the new people and getting them started, but this one’s a little different. See I’m only doing today so the main facilitator can see how we do it and get more answers because my department was cut from the program. It’s a little bittersweet.

You know what else is bittersweet? I had my last scheduled Wednesday night at the pool. I’ve worked Wednesday nights for so long I’m not sure I’ll know what to do with myself. Next week I’m on a road trip with my bro (hashtag #CandMofftoseetheOG if you want to follow along on Instagram) and the week after I will HAVE to make sure the house is ready for listing. Frank and I agreed to a July 1 deadline but I’d rather get it done before that…it’ll be cutting it close.

But, I’m going to miss some of the Wednesday night kids. It’s so weird which kids stick with you. Some I had for years are barely a blip on my memory radar but others I had for just a few months are still with me. I hope they don’t forget me either.

Anyway! I hope you have a great weekend! If you need me I’ll be ripping out and replacing the bathroom and maybe painting the kitchen if things get really wild.

Please feel free to come help if you want.

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Thursday Three – Recent random pics from my phone

He asked, “How many pics do you even have on your phone?”

About 1,300 give or take. I like to take pictures to share with people. Sometimes I turn them into blog posts, sometimes they’re just for me, sometimes they turn into mail. Some of them are to document progress or a particular situation.

Here’s a few I’ve taken recently.


A little dig to BatGirl that I had access to lilacs and she wasn’t here to enjoy them.


A really great meal to make again.

Fotor_149719682032429A moment to remember from a day in the hot and hazy sunshine.

Yeah, I have my reasons for taking them. How many pics are in your phone?


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What just happened? The Walmart affair

what the foxI get to see some of the most random and ridiculous things. While grateful it does, NotSoSweetPea and I aren’t entirely sure how it happens. We’re thinking the Universe rewards me for not so awesome things with moments of “what the what just happened here?”  laughs.

I think it also helps that I generally pay attention to the world around me. You can’t see stuff if you’re not paying attention.

I was at a Walmart in a smaller town early afternoon on a Sunday, picking up some craft paint and snacks for a project. The paint was for the project, the snacks were for me while I worked on the project. I walked out of the store behind the cart guy who was walking next to a mom who was more well put together than you usually see out that way with a big and blinged wedding ring set. They seemed to be chatting.

Shrug. I didn’t think anything of that, this was one of the more rural area stores and you ALWAYS see someone you know there.

When I got in my car, I realized the woman was parked right near me. As I got settled, had a few sips of coffee, and replied to a few emails and texts, I noticed he was helping her put her bags/boxes in the car. Okay, interesting but didn’t think too much of it.

What caught my attention was how when he shut her trunk, they got closer and furtively  looked around the parking lot before they started making out/sucking face.


I sent a texts to a few girlfriends to see if they had thoughts on what I just saw and got several fantastic replies. Clearly, I was witness to an affair taking place in the Walmart parking lot.

Who  knew? Walmart parking lot is the place to make out on a Sunday afternoon. Maybe she’s got a thing for safety vests? Who knows.

I kinda want to go back on a Sunday afternoon to see if I run into them again.

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Reading More: My Not So Perfect Life

book square

My Not So Perfect Life by Sophie Kinsella was provided to me at no charge through my partnership with NetGalley.  The opinions are my own. You can see other books I’ve reviewed here.

Once upon a time in what feels like someone else’s life sometimes, I read another Sophie Kinsella book (I’ve Got Your Number) and thought I liked it well enough so I requested this one.

From Amazon:

Everywhere Katie Brenner looks, someone else is living the life she longs for, particularly her boss, Demeter Farlowe. Demeter is brilliant and creative, lives with her perfect family in a posh townhouse, and wears the coolest clothes. Katie’s life, meanwhile, is a daily struggle—from her dismal rental to her oddball flatmates to the tense office politics she’s trying to negotiate. No wonder Katie takes refuge in not-quite-true Instagram posts, especially as she’s desperate to make her dad proud.

Then, just as she’s finding her feet—not to mention a possible new romance—the worst happens. Demeter fires Katie. Shattered but determined to stay positive, Katie retreats to her family’s farm in Somerset to help them set up a vacation business. London has never seemed so far away—until Demeter unexpectedly turns up as a guest. Secrets are spilled and relationships rejiggered, and as the stakes for Katie’s future get higher, she must question her own assumptions about what makes for a truly meaningful life.

I think I would have liked this book better if I read it in the sun by the water with an adult beverage in my hand. I didn’t dislike it, but I didn’t like it as much as I could have.

The characters were fun, it was reasonably witty, but it’s a pretty standard chick lit/romance. There were a few twists to make it more interesting, but I wasn’t really wowed by it. Sorry, Sophie.

I did love how the Katie was able to use what she knew to make someone else’s dream happen and that in turn led to her dream happening. And she came out on top over the mean girls.

Is this something you’d read? Why or why not?

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Good things 2017: Week 23


She held this pose and stared at me until I took the picture and told her she is a good girl. 

It’s important to remember the things that are good in life. It reminds me how blessed I really am and also helps to ease the sting of the bad. I’m incredibly lucky, there’s more good than bad (Knockonwood!) and I want to document how thankful I am for it.

Last week got busy so I didn’t have much time to post. There are a few I’d really like to get done and posted, but hey, sometimes life wins and blogging gets put on the back burner. Getting the house ready to sell is part of life winning.

I’m wrapping up swimming lessons so I can be only scheduled at the pool one night a week for the summer so there’s scheduling, wrapping up lessons etc.

I basically don’t remember a whole lot of last week, but here are some things that stood out. I do know it was a pretty good week though.

Good things from last week:

  • New babies in the family and seeing some of my family for Pop’s b’day
  • Literally having just enough paint to get to a really good spot to stop in the kitchen
  • Friends messaging me and saying, “So when can I cook you dinner?”
  • Dogs posing for photos.
  • Really big projects being done so there’s time to relax.
  • Raspberry Spiked Seltzer (I’m a fan of most of the flavors, but this was really good this week.)
  • GF noodles with portabellas cooked in garlic, butter and a pinch of red pepper flake, cheddar cheese and a few shakes of Worcestershire sauce for fun. Holy crap it was great!
  • Signs of being where you’re supposed to be and your personal angels looking out for you.
  • The number on the scale. I shouldn’t so excited. I’m not defined by it, but it’s exciting.
  • Co-Worker saying to you, “Please take the rest of this caramel M&M bag so I don’t eat it.” (It’s hidden in my desk drawer. Please see point above.)

Good reads:

Favorite Photo:

Favorite Song:

Ryan Adams covered T-Swizz’s 1989 Album. It’s basically perfect. I also am pretty sure I’ve posted this song before. I know this isn’t a new thing to know, but it was a favorite song this week.

How have you been? What made you smile? Tell me about one of your successes? Read anything good this week?

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Good things 2017: Week 22


My usual order from Subway.

It’s important to remember the things that are good in life. It reminds me how blessed I really am and also helps to ease the sting of the bad. I’m incredibly lucky, there’s more good than bad (Knockonwood!) and I want to document how thankful I am for it.

While it felt like the week took FOREVER, it was really kind of quick. Holiday weekends do that I think.

Man I love a 4 day week. If I could make that happen every week I totally would do it. What’s an extra 2.5 hours a day since I’m already here? Not oging to happen at this job, but a girl can dream, right?

Anyway! Good things from last week:

  • Only 2 more mandatory Saturdays of group lessons. (Not that I’m counting, who are we kidding? I totally am now.)
  • Short week at work
  • GF pot pies
  • Perfect rainbows
  • Getting the house selling process started
  • My Google-fu
  • BatGirl’s guest post (If you want to do one, let me know!)
  • My friends not questioning my quirks or what I’m up to next.
  • Decent outcomes for a long day at the pool.
  • M&M Sharing size bag of peanut butter and one of caramel. (I mostly shared.)

Good reads:

Favorite Photo:


Ever wonder if you’re on the right path and then see something that BAM!
You’re right where you need to be?
I’ve been seeing a lot of that lately.

Favorite Song:

Love her a little more with each song.

How have you been? What made you smile? Tell me about one of your successes? Read anything good this week?

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Survey Says – Courtney’s Biography

courts bio

“She’s a daydreamer and a night thinker. She’s a doer. She sees an opportunity in every problem she faces. She has great foresight and can see things much too far. Her curious mind is stretched by all the experiences life throws her way and what she makes out of them. She is sunshine mixed with rah, creating a beautiful rainbow. there is no lie in what she does. ”

I’d love to think that’s all true, really, but I think it’s only sometimes true.

You can see yours here.

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Friday Five


Practice more with my actual camera. This was from SamGal

Oh hey, it’s June. Look at that. That was a quick 5 months. How did that happen?

I’ve mentioned it a few times, but I’ve sort of been in a fog for awhile. A couple of weeks ago it felt like I woke up and now I’m all ready to make some moves.

The focus for June is largely going to be just that: Moves.

As in I want to sell my house and move. I want to move my joints more. I want to move more from my To-Do list to my Done! list.

  1. Finish getting the house ready to put on the market. Really this could be it’s own damn 500 things, but hopefully this weekend I can get some of it underway.  Early next week I’m meeting with the real estate agent to get this show on the road. I think Frank and I are both ready to just be done and move on.
  2. Part of getting it ready is sorting out what to do with all the craft supplies I really don’t need to keep. Don’t worry, I’ll still be crafting but I don’t need all of it. I’m considering selling a bunch of it on fb Marketplace.
  3. Hit the yoga mat a minimum of 8 times. I have a Groupon to use and purchased some more Happy Hour yoga classes when they were on sale for Memorial Day weekend. Yoga with Adriene is great, but sometimes I feel that I work harder in an actual class setting.
  4. Read and review 3 books. (And review a 4th that is already read, but I have to write up. Then I only have about 80 left to do to catch up with my NetGalley shelf.)
  5. Enjoy being happy, keep seeing the good, practice patience, do something every day that brings me peace, and trying not to worry about what’s next. I still have my moments, but man, it’s really been nice lately to not have to fight just to keep my head up. Knock on wood this keeps up.

Alright so that last part doesn’t have anything to really do with “moves” but hey, I’ve got this good thing going, I have to do what I can to keep it up, right?

I have a few other fun things planned for June that hopefully pan out. A craft day, a few birthdays, hopefully a few camp fires with marshmallows etc. Next weekend I’m also going to my Pop’s b’day. He’s going to be 85!

What do you want to do in June?

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Guest Post: BatGirl has a new obsession

Oh BatGirl. You’re wonderful. I can not tell you how I enjoy your company, your texts, and how you’ve inspired me. This inspiration includes considering selling things on fb marketplace. And to look at the random things I could buy! (If I wasn’t trying to get rid of things.) Readers, please give BatGirl a warm welcome. You can see her other guest posts here, here, and here .There might be more.

Confession: I have become more than slightly obsessed with the Facebook Marketplace.

It started innocently enough two weeks ago when I got a notification about the new, fancy feature that is the marketplace. Intrigued I opened the menu and started to scroll. Within 3 minutes I caught myself thinking, “Oh, that’s a really nice screen room tent. I bet that would be great for camping next month.”

I should have known then.

Although I have yet to purchase anything in these two weeks (I do have my eye on a roll top desk), it’s pretty much a daily habit at this point. I’m not quite certain what the draw is, but I can’t get enough of it. Maybe it satisfies a sense of voyeurism.  I am endlessly intrigued by the things people are trying to unload. While the majority of items tend to fall into the same 5 or 6 categories, i. e.  label purses, furniture, appliances, jewelry, toys, and exercise equipment, a few items have left me scratching my head and wondering, “but why??”

Like a 3.5 pound tub of buttercream frosting. “Brand new, never opened.”  And the 16″ statue of Pope John Paul II. And the unicycle. And the VHS tape of Whitney Houston singing the Star Spangled Banner at Superbowl 25.

2017-05-26Other times a photo is really worth a thousand words. For example, the user selling a green portable canopy. Rather than fully open the canopy, the seller has some poor soul standing inside the canopy with their head holding up the peak. That’s a good friend. (Although who am I kidding. If my best friend asked me to stand with a canopy on my head for a photo, I’d totally do it.)

If you haven’t had a chance to nose around the marketplace, I highly recommend it. You might find a laugh or you might find that perfect mirror for above your mantle. Now if you’ll excuse me, I’m going to sit on the couch with my tub of buttercream frosting and watch Whitney in her glory days. With the Pope.

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