Wednesday, 23 October 2013

If you have checked out the previous Stumble Upon Songs posts you might have guessed that I have a thing for sombre songs or ballads. I love high energy pop/rock/alternative music, I am often blasting them in my car in the morning or on the way home but I can also go on for hours listening to softer deeper songs that just help me keep calm and carry on ;).

Still by Daughter
First heard while watching a fanvideo for a favorite pairing of mine from one of my favorite TV shows - Once Upon a Time

The Lightning Strike by Snow Patrol
Snow Patrol is one of my favourite bands and when I heard this song playing during the trailer for the 2013 animated movie Epic I instantly loved it, but you know I didn't realize that the song was being sung by Snow Patrol (fail on my part). But I was so happy when I found out that it was them.

The A Team by Ed Sheeran
This one was actually just discovered through the radio, haha.

Agnes Obel by Avenue
Her song Riverside was used in another Once Upon a Time fanvideo and I loved it so much I looked up a few of her other songs.

Found through tumblr after the airing of the episode Game of Thrones episode Rains of Castermere or as fans of the epic book series A Song of Ice and Fire call it The Red Wedding episode. It's a beautiful song but heart breaking if you are a fan of the show.

Posted on Wednesday, October 23, 2013 by Sandy

No comments

Saturday, 19 October 2013

Monday night my mom and I went to a book signing. Now usually a book signing is something I go to with a friend (if I can get one to come with me) or by myself but my mom came along this time because she knew who the author was. Ingrid Hoffman, a celebrity chef was promoting her book, Latin d'Lite. She has a cooking show called Delicioso that airs on Univision and she also has a show on The Cooking Channel called Simply Delicioso and my family has seen a few of her show’s episodes so I am sure my brother and sister would have liked to come too but the signing was at 7 and my mom works late so we went straight after work.

The store, Books & Books, doesn't do any advertising for their author events so I wasn't surprised that there were a lot of empty seats at the signing (especially since it was a Monday night). I mean the only reason I knew about it is because I receive emails directly from the store and then I told my mom about it. Despite the small group the signing was great. Ingrid was very laid back and honest and she had a lot of energy as she went through her presentation. She not only talked about the book itself (why she decided to create it and what it was about) but she took us all through the makings of the book, the behind the scenes, and she had pictures to show us on a slideshow.

It was very informative and interesting to learn and see how much work actually goes into making a cook book and oh my god A LOT of work goes into making a cook book. I already knew from following fiction writing authors online and going to signings that publishing a book requires WORK and perseverance and dedication but creating a recipe book involves on top of that other things you wouldn't need for regular books like photographers, a food stylus, studio, test kitchens, props and of course FOOD. Lots and lots of food. If you have ever seen the movie Julie and Julia you know how long it takes just to pick and test the recipes that are going to be in your book well now picture that process with the addition of the elements I just listed. I know regular books can involve photographers and models and other things to make an image look great but that’s almost always for the exterior, the book cover, well a good recipe book has pictures of food on the INSIDE of the book too.
Mexican Port Pozole

This was definitely one of my favourite author signings to attend and not just because we got free food (Wahoo Ceviche). The signing went beyond what I expected. The topics that were touched on were – publishing restrictions in regards to Latinos and Hispanics, the impact of big industry farming, the problem with hunger in America, schools based on cooking helping disadvantaged youth to succeed, jobs in the food industry besides being a chef, ingredients from the 1920 and 1800s that no longer exist along with other things I am sure I have forgotten.

After the presentation and chat there was the signing. I always buy a book when I go to a signing and Ingrid signed it and personalized it for my mom. My mom in fact had reached the store before me and she told me she got to have a long chat with Ingrid about her touring and I made sure she got a picture with her. I am happy my mom got this experience, she works so hard and always seems busy and doesn't really go out often (I think I get my introversion from her maybe) so I am happy I was able to share this with her. She said she couldn't believe she got to meet Ingrid and I am happy she did.
Latin burgers with caramelized onion
 and jalapeno relish and red pepper mayonnaise

Sorry I have no images from the actual event (except one with my mom and Ingrid) I left my camera in the car and my phone camera doesn't work.

Posted on Saturday, October 19, 2013 by Sandy

No comments

Friday, 18 October 2013

Why Love?

Why is it that we blame love
for so many things
when it is us that choose to fall in love?

Is it because we can't find it
in ourselves
to put the blame
where it really should go.

Posted on Friday, October 18, 2013 by Reeshe

No comments

Wednesday, 16 October 2013

A semi-oldie but a favourite that I have been re-listening to a lot lately. This song puts me in a good mood even at work where I am surrounded by different shades of greys and browns and doing a job I do not love. If you are in need of a mood lifter maybe it will help you out.

Edit: Looks like this vid won't play one the blog but you can click the link and see it on youtube.

Posted on Wednesday, October 16, 2013 by Sandy

No comments

Sunday, 13 October 2013

Alma of My Heart
Alma of my Heart by Susanna Lo
Irena Montoya and Tatiana Jones come from two entirely different worlds. Irena is a poor, illegal immigrant who sneaks across the Mexican border and walks 46 days to Los Angeles where she hopes to find a new life for herself and her unborn daughter. Tatiana is a wealthy architect who has everything a woman could want – beauty, brains, money and an adoring husband – but she can’t have children. After a year of struggling to raise her daughter as a single mother in the pits of L.A., Irena realizes the best thing she can do for her child, Alma, is to give her up. She leaves Alma at the steps of The Survivors Sojourn, a safe haven for abused women and children founded and built by Tatiana. The minute Tatiana meets Alma, she knows all her dreams will come true and she raises Alma as her own daughter. Seven years later, the tragedy of Alma’s death brings Irena and Tatiana together. Through pain and suffering, these two women find love in a way neither one expected because sometimes hope can come from great despair.

This story was amazing, I was truly touched by this story. I cried, I smiled, I felt the happiness and the sadness that came with the women in this book.

I was drawn into this book, I felt everything that these women went thought, this book was so beautifully written, it kept you there feeling there pain, there happiness, their love.

The sacrifices that were made by the two of these women, it was what made them stronger, it is what made them fight harder and made them into the people they are today. I was thankful for this book and I have heard they are going to make it into a movie which is great. This story needs to be told. I believe that it will give people hope.

5 out of 5

Posted on Sunday, October 13, 2013 by Reeshe

No comments

Friday, 11 October 2013

A long time ago before Reeshe moved away to New York she suggested that perhaps I could do TV show episode recaps. Me, being the lazy person that I am wasn't up to the idea. Writing episode recaps would mean that I would have to write a post once a week, consistently. That kind of project requires commitment and discipline, two qualities I greatly lack but you know what this blog has been quiet for quite some time now.

I have been busy with work, school, exercise and home life (not to mention goofing off on tumblr) but it is time I return to Sparrow and Vixen Reviews. Even if renovations are still going on around here it doesn't mean the blog needs to be quiet until everything is ready. So please continue to pardon the dust but don't stay away until everything is all clear.

Now the show suggested for the recaps was Vampire Diaries since we both watch it regularly, well I do I'm not sure Reeshe is keeping track of the new season but since this show is on Season 5 now I don't think it would be a good choice.

My show of choice will be one that has premièred this fall. One that premièred yesterday actually. I am a fan of the TV Show Once Upon a Time and this year a spinoff of the show has started. I will be watching and recapping/reviewing Once Upon a Time in Wonderland. I will do my best to make the posts funny and hope they actually turn out that way.

Here is a trailer for those of you who have never heard of this show.

Posted on Friday, October 11, 2013 by Sandy

No comments

Currently I am quite low in the funds department so I can’t spend as much money on books as I used to. Actually I can’t really spend any money on books for the moment, which is actually a good thing for me since I have 90 books on my shelf or iPad waiting to be read. I am hoping my state of empty wallet means I can knock this number down a good 10 or even 20 books but let’s not get ahead of ourselves here.

Another reason I can’t buy any more books is because I simply have no more room to put them. I have books on shelves, in drawers, taking up space on tables, in boxes and suitcases. The only reason I don’t have books lining my wall along the floor is because our roof leaks but if that wasn’t an issue I am sure I would have books there too. So far this isn’t a major concern since I can’t afford to get more books (and hey I can always get ebooks) but when a time comes and I will need room there is my annual solution – donate books. The library, The Red Cross, and the local Thrift Shop run by the Humane Society all take donated books and I will be visiting one or all of them sometime this year. Maybe I can do this a bit before Christmas :). I would give books to friends but none of my friends here are big readers and all of my big reader friends live overseas :(.

What do you do when you run out of book room? How big is the to-read pile in your home? Do you have any strategies or tips on how to cut that pile down quickly? Do you ever get rid of books or do you keep them forever?

Posted on Friday, October 11, 2013 by Sandy

No comments