Man-ificent Monday: Nicholas Gonzalez

This week's cutie pie is actor, Nicholas Gonzalez, from San Antonio, TX. Nicholas is best known for his role as Alex Santiago in Resurrection Blvd in the late 90s. He's played on TV shows like The O.C., Law & Order: SVU, CSI: Miami, and Melrose Place. He had a recurring role on ABC's, Of the Map (I think the show is cancelled, though). He was romantically linked to Regina King a few years ago. Nicholas has also done some nude modeling. Yeah, uh...I got quite an eyeful while looking for pics to post. ;D

Word(s) to Describe: Sexy, Gorgeous


ARC Review: Sweet As Sin

Author: Inez Kelley
Genre: Fiction, Contemporary Romance
Release: January, 2011
Source: Netgalley
Rating: 5/5

Description: She was made for sin. Sin was something he knew intimately.

Bestselling YA author John Murphy is the acclaimed Master of Monsters. But when the door creaks shut, the monsters master him. His haunted past has destined him to hell, but he won’t let that get in the way of enjoying his present or his delicious new neighbor. Enthralled by her, his secrets begin to unravel and the pages of his latest manuscript are written by his deepest fears…and in blood.

Pastry chef owner of The Sugar Shack, Livvy Andrews is as sinfully sweet as the confections she makes and just as irresistible. Her hidden passions erupt when a spicy new neighbor moves in next door and she is powerless against the lure of a man familiar with the erotic delicacies of life. She realizes there are more layers to him than she imagined, each one a delicious or frightening discovery. As lust turns to love, Livvy will master the monsters John keeps in the dark— but at what price?

Review: When John met his next door neighbor, Livvy, his original plan was to have a hot affair. Livvy's original intention was to stay away from John and resist his charm. You know the saying, "The best laid plans often go awry." They find themselves in the middle of a hot and heavy affair, their feelings for each other growing each day. Will their love be enough to get them past the personal demons that threaten to overwhelm them?


  • Honestly, there's nothing I didn't like about this book. Maybe that it ended?


Where do I start?

  • I LOVED the complexity of the characters! Both Livvy and John are such three-dimensional. Livvy so dang lovable. She's strong, yet vulnerable. She sticks with John in spite of his personal demons. It takes a strong woman to stand by her man through his struggles. And John. Whew! He's a sexy bad boy. He's by no means perfect. At one point, he's an ass and nearly breaks Livvy's heart. We see his vulnerability big time in this book. The secondary characters are awesome, too, but Livvy and John are by far my fave.

  • The author's voice is awesomeness.

  • I was so emotionally connected to these characters that I wanted to know what happened even after the book was done. This book definitely took me on an emotional roller coaster. I mean, I felt what the characters were feeling, especially John. He went through hell in his tween/teen years and I felt for him...the kid John as well as the adult John.

  • I liked the fact that John was a best-selling YA urban fantasy author. He wrote under a pen name. The characters in his books represented different parts of himself. When he met Livvy, a new character came on scene. The books coincided with his personal struggles. You know how some kids create outlets to help them forget abuse. Well, John's was his fantasy world.

  • I loved the chemistry between John and Livvy. Can you say hot? There's some sexual tension, but they didn't automatically fall into bed with each other. I loved that.

  • I loved the fact that Livvy got her inspiration for sweet creations from everyday living.

Sweet as Sin is so much more than just a romance book. I loved it! It had me from beginning to end. I seriously stayed up all night to finish this book. If you love books with complex characters you'll fall in love with, a catchy storyline that'll grab at your emotions, a romance story that's o much more than just a romance story, and a fun, sexy read, Sweet As Sin is the perfect book for you! Inez Kelley now has a new fan.


Book Review: Manifest (Mystyx #1)

Author: Artist Arthur
Genre: Fiction, Young Adult, Paranormal, Romance
Release: August, 2010
Source: Bought
Rating: 3/5

Description: Sometimes it’s the smallest things that make the biggest difference. . . .

When fifteen-year-old Krystal Bentley moves to Lincoln, Connecticut, her mom's hometown, she assumes her biggest drama will be adjusting to the burbs after living in New York City.

But Lincoln is nothing like Krystal imagined. The weirdness begins when Ricky Watson starts confiding in her. He's cute, funny, a good listener—and everything she'd ever want—except that he was killed nearly a year ago. Krystal's ghost-whispering talents soon lead other "freaks" to her door—Sasha, a rich girl who can literally disappear, and Jake, who moves objects with his mind. All three share a distinctive birthmark in the shape of an M and, fittingly, call themselves the Mystyx. They set out to learn what really happened to Ricky, only to realize that they aren't the only ones with mysterious powers. But if Krystal succeeds in finding out the truth about Ricky's death, will she lose him for good?

Review: After Krystal's parents divorces her mother eventually remarries then moves the family to her hometown of Lincoln, Connecticut. Krystal blames her mother for the divorce and hates that she had to move, so she makes her mother pay through her (Krystal's) behavior.

Once they're settled in, Krystal notices a cute boy following her, trying to get her attention. The only thing is the boy, Ricky, is a ghost, killed in Lincoln before she moved there. Ricky wants Krystal to help solve the mystery of his death. While trying to comprehend what's happening, Krystal meets Sasha and Jake. As they hang out more, they find that not only do they all have the same "M" birthmark on their bodies, but they also have powers: Krystal can see and talk to ghosts, Sasha can teleport, and Jake can move things with his mind. They work together to try and solve Ricky's death.


  • The narrating (in Krystal's voice) is a bit...casual. It's like she's telling the story to her friend. For example, to transition, she may say something like, "Anyway..."

  • The story starts off slow, though it does pick up. I really wanted to support this novel because of the multicultural cast, so, despite the slow start, I kept reading. Other people may not do that. If you don't catch people at the beginning, you just may lose them.

  • I would have liked for the whole Greek mythology aspect to have been explored a little more.

  • I'm not crazy about the way that Krystal treated her mother at first. I guess it's cos of the way I was raised (the whole "honor your mother and father" thing). My parents were wrong at times, but I never disrespected them. The thought alone never crossed my mind. My parents did not play when it came to respect. I don't know. Maybe it's just me.


  • Krystal's growth. She's disrespectful to both her mother and her stepfather and off in her own world at first. She even seems a bit self-absorbed. But the experience and hanging with Sasha and Jake helps her grow.

  • I like the way Krystal bonded with her new friends and her potential boyfriend, Franklin. She kept to herself and originally didn't want to have anything to do with them in the beginning, but she lets them in.

  • There is a couple of twists in the story that I did not expect. One deals with the real reason her parents divorced.

  • I liked the Greek mythology aspect. A LOT of the paranormals today are dealing with vampires, werewolves, angels, demons, and fae, so this was a welcomed change.

  • I like the multicultural cast of characters. Krystal, Sasha, and Jake hang with each other, despite the differences in culture and social status.

This was a fun read, despite the slow start. Ms. Arthur has two other books in this series, Mystify (February, 2011) and Mayhem (August, 2011), both of which I'll be reviewing within the next month or so.


Random Thoughts Thursday

YAY!!! I knew it! He deserved that trophy.

That is all...


Writing Wednesday: In My Mailbox (2)

In My Mailbox is a weekly feature hosted by Kristi at The Story Siren. Here, we post books that we have bought, borrowed, or received.


Words in the Dust by Trent Reedy
Wishful Thinking by Alexandra Bullen
Flirt Club by Cathleen Daly


Paranormalcy by Kiersten White


Fashioned By Faith by Rachel Lee Carter
Lost Voices by Sarah Porter


Tickle-Me Tuesday

Ok, so I know I posted a vid already for today, but I just had to post these vids. I hate that I missed Justin Timberlake hosting SNL this past Saturday with Lady GaGa. I heard they were hilarious!


Tickle-Me Tuesday

This week, I'm posting Beyonce's official "Run the World (Girls)" video. I must say, it's...different. The song is catchy and it gets your body moving. Plus, it's all about girl power...and I'm all for girl power. I'm still trying to figure out if I like it, though. Both the video and the song are getting mixed reviews.

I heart Beyonce. She's majorly talented (and gorgeous). I do believe she has a lot of haters in the midst, but whatever. Hate if you must, but the girl is talented. And loved. And did I say gorgeous? She represents Houston, TX well! One thing I can say, one of my life's mission is to be able to dance like these women in the video. To be able to move my body like them would be so awesome! I'm going to start working on it now. In my room. Alone. Away from public speculation. That way, the only ones who'll see me make a fool out of myself will be my stuffed animals. And I've already sworn them to secrecy.

So anyway, what do you think? Does B have another hit? Is her video hit or miss?


Man-ificent Monday: Hines Ward

Though this week's cutie pie is more known for his moves on the field, for the past few months, he's been known for his moves on the dance floor. Hines Ward is a wide receiver of the Pittsburgh Steelers, but he's also one of the 3 finalists on Dancing With The Stars. Just last week, he not only earned the 1st perfect score of the season, he did it TWICE in one night. Can I just say I'm loving his bald look, dimples and his smile?

Word(s) to Describe: Cutie, Sexy, Smooth


Inspirational Sunday

"No one knows about that day or hour, not even the angels in heaven, nor the Son, but only the Father."

Matthew 24:36

Rae's Thought: For whatever reason, we humans think that we know when Jesus will come back (the Rapture). My question is, how can we have the audacity to think we're privy to that info when Jesus Himself, the Son of God, doesn't even know? I can see why unbelievers would believe the "end of days/rapture" predictions. After all, they don't have the Word of God to guide them. The children of God, on the other hand, have a Guide. And in that Guide, Jesus tells us that the only one who knows when the Rapture/End of the world will happen is God.

For months leading up to yesterday (May 21st), people were preparing to be taken up with Jesus. BUT, Thessalonians 5:1 - 2 says, "Now, brothers and sisters, about times and dates we do not need to write to you, for you know very well that the day of the Lord will come like a thief in the night." Do thieves make themselves known? Do they make a grand entrance? "Hello, good people! I am a thief and I'm getting ready to rob you!" Do they make an appointment to let you know when they're coming? "Ok, so Monday, May 23rd. Does that work for you?" No, they do not. The Bible says Jesus will come "like a thief in the night." This means He's going to come when we least expect Him. Not when we're ready for Him. Not when we've spent months preparing for His second coming. I hate to break it to you, but we won't know when the Rapture is going to happen until it actually happens. God could decide for it to happen any second now. It could be today, tomorrow, next month, next year, 10 years from now or even thousands of years from now. We. Don't. Know.

Christians, instead of trying to predict the day of the rapture - I mean, because really, all attempts to predict are futile - or trying to figure out when the world is going to end, why not focus on living a godly life so when Jesus does come (like a thief in the night), you'll automatically be ready. Why not focus on actually reading your Bible, so when people do or say things contrary to what the Bible says, you'll know; you won't spend all of your money or sell all of your things because of what someone says. Why not focus on winning lost souls for Jesus so when He does come (like a thief in the night), you won't have to answer to God for the souls you could've won, but didn't.


Book Review: The Apple-Pip Princess

Author: Jane Ray
Genre: Fiction, Fairy Tales, Picture Books
Release: March, 2008
Source: Library
Rating: 5/5

Description: Sometimes it’s the smallest things that make the biggest difference. . . .

Once there was a kingdom full of laughter, happiness, trees, and birdsong. But when the queen dies, the land becomes quiet and barren, and everyone is filled with sadness. What will make the kingdom bloom again? Can Serenity, the youngest of three princesses, bring hope and life back to her kingdom with a single apple pip -- a precious seed left to her by her mother? This original fairy tale is brought to life and exquisitely illustrated by the internationally renowned Jane Ray.

With sumptuous artwork, Jane Ray tells an original fairy tale of a humble princess whose love for nature’s beauty restores a kingdom.

Review: There once was a kingdom that flourished under the reign of a gentle king and his beautiful wife. But then the queen dies, leaving the king to raise their 3 daughters alone. Everyone and everything becomes barren and sad. Eventually, the king decides to set his 3 daughters to a special task: do something to change the land. Will the youngest princess, Serenity, be the one to save the land?


  • Nothing at all.


  • Everything! Another awesome children's book. It was touching, beautifully written, gorgeous illustrations...

The Apple-Pip Princess is perfect to read aloud to your children or students. I definitely recommend this book to anyone who loves a sweet, awesome read.


Book Review: Snoring Beauty

Author: Bruce Hale (author); Howard Fine (illustrator)
Genre: Fiction, Fairy Tales, Picture Book
Release: May, 2008
Source: Library
Rating: 5/5

Description: A furious fairy. A cruel curse. A princess enchanted by a spell.

Think you know the story of Sleeping Beauty? Better think again. This fractured fairy tale tells the real story of Sleeping Beauty - warts, scales, and all.

And guess what? She snores.

Review: King Gluteus and Queen Esophagus throws a christening party for their new baby girl, Princess Drachmina Lofresca Malvolio Margarine (Marge for short). In the same tradition as the original Sleeping Beauty, the fairies in attendance bless Marge with wonderful gifts. Then, a garlic-smelling fairy named Beebo, comes and puts a curse on her: on her 16th birthday, she'll die under the wheels of a pie wagon. The king begs the last fairy, a hard-of-hearing fairy named Tintinnitus, to undo the curse. So, instead of dying under the wheels of a pie wagon, Marge will turn into a sleeping dragon who only can be awakened by a quince. When the time comes, Marge turns into a beautiful, hot pink and purple dragon who wears red lipstick and nail polish. The kingdom can breathe easy because she doesn't die, only she not only sleeps, she snores. Horribly. The king issues an edict: whoever can wake Marge up will marry her. What follows is a hilarious journey until Prince Quince comes along. Will his kiss be just what the snoring dragon needs?


  • There's absolutely nothing I didn't like about this book. Nothing.


  • Everything! It was a wonderfully funny take on a classic fairy tale. The pics were awesome, but I expected that from Howard Fine. The cover is what attracted me, but the whole book did not disappoint.

This book is definitely perfect for read-alouds. And kids aren't the only ones who'll fall in love with Snoring Beauty. It has just enough sarcasm (it's narrated by a sarcastic frog) and laughs that the whole family will enjoy it. I LOVED this book!


We Interrupt Your Regularly Scheduled Program...

Sooooo...guess where I'll be in the fall? Yep, that's right! IN ABU DHABI! I got the job! OMG I'm so excited (and nervous, but mostly excited) about this opportunity. This is SO. AWESOME. More details later.

Now back to your regularly scheduled program.


Random Thoughts Thursday

Dancing With the Stars. Monday's episode was a whole lot of awesome! I knew these last dancers were gonna be hard to choose from. And Hines? WOW! Perfect scores on both dances. He blew my mind away. I so can't wait til next week! It's gonna be so HOT! It's so hard to pick...they're all great. But I think I'm going to go with...



First Place


Writing Wednesday: Wannabe Writers #49

Wannabe Writers is a writing group for the un-published started by Sarah at Confessions of the Un-published. It's a place where future authors can ask questions, share stories, and get feedback. Interested in joining? Click here to find more about how it works.

Where I am in the writing process: Unpublished. Haven't been writing faithfully...been too busy with my job search. Now that summer is coming and I at least have a summer job, I can concentrate more on my novels.

My current problem: OMG, the elevator pitch! Writing the pitch is actually harder than writing the book itself. Basically, I suck at it. Seriously. In novel #2, tentatively called, Hidden Treasure, my main character, Treasure, is tired of her safe and boring life. When she finds out her mom has cancer, she suggests they each do a bucket list. It's an opportunity to do 2 things: Keep her mother's mind off the trials that cancer brings and help spice Treasure's life up. They call it a "Life List" (Treasure refuses to think of her mother "kicking the bucket"). Treasure's list causes her to do things she's always wanted to do, but have been too afraid to do, including compete on a dance reality show. She has to do one thing on her list every week of her Senior year (40 weeks = 40 Life List items). She goes through a sort of metamorphosis, getting over her fears and learning to live life to the fullest.

Ok, so that's the overall summary. This is the elevator pitch I have so far:When 17 year-old introvert, Treasure Davis, finds out that her mom has cancer, she suggests they both do a bucket list, even though she’s terrified of where her list may take her. When Mom’s health begins to fail, will Treasure have the courage to continue with her list alone? I read that elevator pitches should be about 50 words and only 2 sentences. Mine is right at 50. I sat and came up with many different pitches and this is the best one I can come up with. Ugh! I know I need to keep working on it.

My question this week: HELP! Any suggestions? Any advice? If you've conquered the great giant called the "elevator pitch" (or even if you haven't and could still do a better job than me...which really isn't hard to do), please feel free to comment.


Tickle-Me Tuesday

This was rapper/producer, Dr. Dre, on Kids Say the Darndest Things. They need to get these kind of shows back on air. What some of these kids say...hilarious! I heart kids.


Man-ificent Monday: Johnny Depp

In honor of the release of Pirates of the Caribbean 4 this Friday, this week's Manificent Monday features the main character. Johnny Depp is back as Captain Jack Sparrow in Pirates of the Caribbean: On Stranger Tides. He gained populariy in the late 80s when he played Officer Tom Hansen in the TV show, 21 Jump Street (a show I absolutely LOVED, though I was only 11 when it premiered). Since then, Johnny Depp has gone on to act in movies such as, Edward Scissorhands, Donnie Brasco, Sleepy Hollow, Blow, Charlie and the Chocolate Factory, Alice in Wonderland, and The Tourist as well as the Pirates of the Caribbean franchise.

Word(s) to Describe: Gorgeous! Ruggedly handsome!


Inspirational Sunday

"Be still and know that I am God."
Psalm 46:10

Rae's Thought: Ever tried to get an antsy child to keep still? Let me tell you, it's NOT an easy task. For whatever reason - whether it's ADHD or simply part of being a kid - they just can't seem to stay still. They may chill for a few seconds, but then they're right back to being antsy, moving around, getting into everything.

Isn't that like the children of God? Whether it's spiritual ADHD or simply a part of being human, we just can't seem to stay still. We may chill for a little bit, but then, we're right back to being antsy or worrisome. Sometimes, we're so busy with life and its struggles, that God has to take us by the hand and say, "Be still." Have you been there? Are you always on the move? Always busy? Always worrying?

I can tell you, being still is not always an easy task. You may sit, but your mind could be running a million miles a minute. Your mind is filled with mistakes you made yesterday, things you're going to do today, and worries about tomorrow. In Psalm 46:10, God is telling us to chill a bit. Recognize that He is God and let Him do what He does. Sometimes, we need to sit down, shut up, and listen. Listen for His voice. Relax in His presence. Let Him be God.

I so value my Jesus time, especially in the early morning. I meet with Jesus before I start my day as well as when I end it. Sometimes, my time is spent just sitting in silence and basking in His love. It's so awesome. When you're still and trust God to be God, oh the peace you will encounter! He fills you with such a wonderful sense of peace, you won't be able to explain it. Today, I invite you to be still and know that He is God!


ARC Review: Kick

Author: Walter Dean Myers and Ross Workman
Genre: Young Adult, Fiction, Middle Grade
Release: February, 2011
Source: Netgalley
Rating: 4/5

Description: For the very first time in his decades-long career writing for teens, acclaimed and beloved author Walter Dean Myers writes with a teen, Ross Workman.

Kevin Johnson is thirteen years old. And heading for juvie. He's a good kid, a great friend, and a star striker for his Highland, New Jersey, soccer team. His team is competing for the State Cup, and he wants to prove he has more than just star-player potential. Kevin's never been in any serious trouble . . . until the night he ends up in jail. Enter Sergeant Brown, a cop assigned to be Kevin's mentor. If Kevin and Brown can learn to trust each other, they might be able to turn things around before it's too late.

Review: Okay, so how cool is it that high school student, Ross Workman, got a chance to write with Walter Dean Myers? He emailed Myers and Myers replied with an invitation to write a story together. I mean, seriously. So. Cool.

And I loved the story they came up with. Kick follows 13 year-old, Kevin Johnson, who gets caught driving a car that belongs to his friend's father. He faces serious charges, but he gets a second chance. Because he is a child of a fallen officer, he's paired with Officer Jerry Brown. The book alternates between Kevin and Officer Brown's point of view. We find that there's more to what happened the night Kevin was caught.


  • The book is so short...less than 100 pages long.

  • The issue of domestic violence isn't resolved. The wife of one of the characters is severly depressed. Not knowing what to do, he tries to beat it out of her. Eventually, she gets help, but he doesn't.


  • Kevin's character. He's seen in a positive light despite the mistake he made (remember there's more to the story).

  • I love the sports subplot. While all of this is happening, Kevin and his soccer team is trying to get to the State Cup.

  • Kevin's growth from the beginning to the end.

  • The fact that Myers teamed up with one of his fans to write a story. Again, how awesome is that?

Despite the fact that the story is short, I truly enjoyed it. The character is 13, which puts the book more at a middle grade level, but the issues are more young adult. The short length may very well work with a generation of kids with short attention spans. And this is definitely a book guys can enjoy.


ARC Review: The Lying Game

Author: Sara Shepard
Genre: Young Adult, Fiction, Mystery/Suspense
Release: December, 2010
Source: Netgalley
Rating: 3/5

Description: I had a life anyone would kill for. Then someone did.

The worst part of being dead is that there’s nothing left to live for. No more kisses. No more secrets. No more gossip. It’s enough to kill a girl all over again. But I’m about to get something no one else does—an encore performance, thanks to Emma, the long-lost twin sister I never even got to meet.

Now Emma’s desperate to know what happened to me. And the only way to figure it out is to be me—to slip into my old life and piece it all together. But can she laugh at inside jokes with my best friends? Convince my boyfriend she’s the girl he fell in love with? Pretend to be a happy, carefree daughter when she hugs my parents good night? And can she keep up the charade, even after she realizes my murderer is watching her every move?

Review: The Lying Game is a game where Sutton and her friends get together and plan elaborate pranks on other people as well as each other. One particular video, with Sutton as the star, is posted on Youtube and Emma, Sutton's long-lost twin,sees it. She contacts Sutton through Facebook and decides to leave her current foster home to meet the twin (they were separated from each other as litle girls). But when Emma arrives, she quickly finds out that there's more to the video than meets the eye. Sutton is a victim of The Lying Game. Emma has two choices: become Sutton or die.


  • The story is narrated in both Emma and Sutton's voice. This caused the story to get confusing at times...sometimes, you didn't know if it was Sutton or Emma, tho Sutton was actually a ghost.

  • Some things were revealed to Sutton and the reader, but not to Emma. So we kind of knew what happened before Emma did.

  • Sutton's character is quite unlikeable, tho I understand the "mean girl" image. There were a few (very few) times I actually felt sorry for her.


  • The story, though unbelievable at times, pulled you in. I couldn't put stop reading cos I wanted to know what was going to happen.

  • The mystery, "whodunit", element was cool. I won't spoil the ending for you. Just know that it's a series.

  • I like Emma's character. She's definitely the more likeable twin!

Fans of Pretty Little Liars (also by Sara Shepard) will definitely dig into this mystery. If you like "whodunit" mysteries, this is the book for you.


Random Thoughts Thursday

Abu Dhabi. Well, folks. Today is the day. I have my final interview. This one is face-to-face with the actual people I will work for in Abu Dhabi. Am I nervous? YES! I'm always nervous when it comes to interviews. I'm good, though, cos I'm covered in prayer. I don't think I'd find out the same day, but I'll keep everyone posted.

Remember I said earlier this year that 2011 was all about change for me...God taking me out of my comfort zone. Abu Dhabi is definitely a step out. Well, more like a giant leap, but you get the idea. God revealed something else to me: this whole process is also a step out of zone. Let me explain. The old Rae wouldn't have even entertained the thought of applying to teach out of the country. It's so far away from my family, friends, church, and all that I know. Even if the old Rae had had a moment of insanity and applied, she would've chickened out and not gone through with the process. But, God has done something within me that I hadn't noticed til He showed me. He's changed my way of thinking. He's matured me, even in this short period of time. I'm actually thinking and excited about going to the other side of the myself, with no family or friends. See? This whole Abu Dhabi process in itself is a step for me.

So, if, for whatever reason, they don't hire me, I won't be heartbroken. If I don't go to Abu Dhabi, I'll have to make sure the growth that God has put me through sticks with me...that I step out of my comfort zone while I'm here in the States. I'm tired of letting fear hold me back. I'm so glad God has given me a little peek into what He's doing in my life. Whether I'm hired or not, I'm coming away from this experience with something cool: an open mind and a new perspective. And I'm ok with that. BUT...going to Abu Dhabi would be such a cool experience.

Dancing With The Stars. Why oh why did Romeo go home? As much as I love Ralph Macchio - I mean, I had a mad crush on him as Karate Kid - I think he should have been the one to go. Sad to see Romeo go. I understand, though. When it comes down to it, the original Karate Kid has more fans on his side. I must say that I'm loving Romeo's positive spirit. Society as a whole usually view young African American men as thugs, prisoners, drug dealers, etc. He shatters that image. And though he favors his dad, Master P, he looks soooooo much better than him. I'm just saying...

So, who are my choices for the top 3? I'd say Hines Ward and Chelsea Kane will definitely be there. Between Kirstie Alley and Ralph Macchio...that's a hard one. I'm thinking Kirstie. It's hard for me to choose who I want to win. I mean, there's the cutie pie football player (I heart the Steelers), the Disney star (I'm a Disney fan), the original Karate Kid (mad crush), and the plus size diva (I'm definitely team plus size, plus I LOVED the TV show, Cheers). Who shall I choose? Decisions decisions...


Writing Wednesday - In My Mailbox (1)

In My Mailbox is a weekly feature hosted by Kristi at The Story Siren. Here, we post books that we have bought, borrowed, or received.


Sorta Lika a Rockstar by Matthew Quick
Haven by Kristi Cook
Spaceheadz: Book 1 by Jon Scieszka.
Jenna and Jonah's Fauxmance by Brendan Halpin and Emily Franklin.


8th Grade Superzero by Olugbemisola Rhuday-Perkovich
Forgive My Fins by Tera Lynn Childs



Tickle-Me Tuesday

funny pictures - This was the last photo on Bill's camera.  He has been missing for 2 weeks now.
See more lolcats at


Man-ificent Monday: Morris Chestnut

OMG! Can I just say that this week's cutie is one scrumptious-looking, chocolate cutie pie? Cos he is. We were first introduced to Morris Chestnut in the early 90s. He played Ricky, a teen father, in the movie, Boyz N The Hood. He went on to act in The Last Boyscout, The Best Man, The Brothers, and Two Can Play That Game. He also played in the TV series, V. Currently, you can see him in the stage play, What Your Husband Don't Know, along side Michelle Williams (formerly of Destiny's Child) and Brian White. He's got a gorgeous smile, doesn't he? *sigh*

Word(s) to Describe: Sexy!


Inspirational Sunday myspace graphic comments
I admire mothers. They can cook dinner, take care of kids, make sure hubby's happy, and take care of business all at the same time. Their ability to manage an entire household amazes me. Looking for a real life superhero? Just look at the moms of this world. 

I have the bestest mommy in the whole world. I mean, I know you may think yours may may even think your mom is the world's best, but I must say: if you were to look up "World's Best Mother" in the dictionary, there would definitely be a pic of my mom. She is my bestie and a wonderful role model for me. No, she's not perfect, but the cool thing is, she's willing to admit when she makes mistakes. God broke the mold when He made Karen Weakly. I pray that, when I become a mom, I'm able to be for my children what my mom has been for me.

My sister, mother, and me Mother's Day 2011
In honor of Mother's Day, I'm posting one of my favorite bible passages: Proverbs 31: 10 - 31. This is dedicated to all the mothers (biological, adoptive, stand-ins, etc).

A wife of noble character who can find?
She is worth far more than rubies.
Her husband has full confidence in her
and lacks nothing of value.
She brings him good, not harm,
all the days of her life.
She selects wool and flax
and works with eager hands.
She is like the merchant ships,
bringing her food from afar.
She gets up while it is still night;
she provides food for her family
and portions for her female servants.
She considers a field and buys it;
out of her earnings she plants a vineyard.
She sets about her work vigorously;
her arms are strong for her tasks.
She sees that her trading is profitable,
and her lamp does not go out at night.
In her hand she holds the distaff
and grasps the spindle with her fingers.
She opens her arms to the poor
and extends her hands to the needy.
When it snows, she has no fear for her household;
for all of them are clothed in scarlet.
She makes coverings for her bed;
she is clothed in fine linen and purple.
Her husband is respected at the city gate,
where he takes his seat among the elders of the land.
She makes linen garments and sells them,
and supplies the merchants with sashes.
She is clothed with strength and dignity;
she can laugh at the days to come.
She speaks with wisdom,
and faithful instruction is on her tongue.
She watches over the affairs of her household
and does not eat the bread of idleness.
Her children arise and call her blessed;
her husband also, and he praises her:
“Many women do noble things,
but you surpass them all.”
Charm is deceptive, and beauty is fleeting;
but a woman who fears the LORD is to be praised.
Honor her for all that her hands have done,
and let her works bring her praise at the city gate.


Tickle-Me Tuesday

Used with permission from Debbie Ridpath Ohi at


Man-ificent Monday: James Franco

The first cutie pie of the month is James Franco. I first saw him in the movie, Whatever It Takes (2000). He gained recognition for playing the title role in the biopic, James Dean.  Let me just say that he makes a perfect James Dean, as far as looks are concerned. He's known for his role as Harry Osborn, Peter Parker's best friend-turned enemy in the Spiderman film series. Some of his other films include Pineapple Express, Date Night, Milk, and 127 Hours.

Word(s) to Describe: Sexy! Mysterious (when he does that "raised eyebrow" thing)

By the way, good looks must run in the family cos James Franco's younger brother, Dave, is a cutie too! He looks SO much like his big brother...especially when he smiles.



A to Z Blog Challenge: I survived! It was a cool experience and I've met some new friends on the way. At first, I was hesitant about joining. I mean, I didn't find out about it until 2 days before. I figured it would be difficult. A few times, it was difficult, BUT I did it. And I'm glad I did.

Blog Schedule/Book Reviews/Writing: First of all, welcome to my new followers. Can't wait to dialogue with you. My normal blog schedule is:

Monday: Manificent Monday
Tuesday: Tickle-Me Tuesday
Wednesday: Writing Wednesday
Thursday: Random Thoughts Thursday
Sunday: Inspirational Sunday

This week, I'm only posting Manificent Monday (today's post is coming, I promise) and Tickle-Me Tuesday. My regularly scheduled posting will start back up Sunday. Honestly, I'm thinking about starting a blog strictly for book reviewing since I read SO MUCH. Until I think about it, I'll just post book reviews on Fridays and Saturdays. But I'm almost positive I'll start a book reviewing blog.

I am so behind on both reviews and reading! I've got about a gazillion reviews to write and books/ARCs to read. Not really a gazillion, but you get the idea. It sure does feel that way, tho. I've been focusing a big chunk of my time on job search (yes, I'm leaving the comfort of substitute teaching), that I haven't been focusing on writing and reading as much. But I plan to rectify that situation. This week is all about reading and writing. I'm concentrating on catching up on my reading, writing these reviews, and writing novel #2 that I've neglected. Boy, my main character is not happy with me. If I'm not careful, she'll start ignoring me as I've ignored her while looking for work. Then, I'll really be in trouble.

Netgalley: Speaking of reviews, if you love to review books, Netgalley is all kinds of awesome! It's where you can get e-galleys of books before they're published for free. I love it! There are some awesome books there.

Job Search: I still don't know what I'll be doing in the fall, but I'm not going to worry about it. I'll keep looking and doing what I need to do, but I won't be so caught up in it, that that's all I do. I trust God to do what He does and provide. I do have an opportunity to teach in Abu Dhabi (about 2 hour drive from Dubai). I made it to round 3 - I had an interview yesterday - and now I'm waiting to see if I made it to the final round.

Honestly, this will take me so far out of my comfort zone, but I'm ready. If I'm chosen to go, I'll go. If not, I'm cool with that, too. God has some awesomeness in store for me. I'm just waiting to see where He wants me to be. If I do go, I'll definitely be counting on the wonders of technology to keep me sane. I mean, I'll be on the other side of the world from all that I know and love. You can count on me blogging, tweeting, and facebooking. And I'll definitely be adding Skype to the list. Anyway, I'll find out some time this week. Eep!