Thursday, February 18, 2010

Serious About Series

Okay, I’ll admit it. I love reading series books. I love sequels, too. It must be because I read Trixie Belden books when I was young. I could always count on reading about Trixie, her brothers Brian, Mart, and little Bobby, and her best friends Jim, Honey and Diana. I so envied her for being a part of the Bob-Whites of the Glen, the “club” they created. There was always a good mystery in each book, but it was the friendship they shared and the comfortable feeling I had when reading. Many years later, I read Stephen King’s books, and the one thing I especially liked was that characters from previous books often made small appearances. Reading about them always made me smile.

I know I’m not the only series reader. Look at the popularity of the Twilight series and, only twenty or so years back, The Baby-Sitters Club. Little House on the Prairie, Amelia Bedelia, The Boxcar Children, even Mercer Mayer’s Little Monster books. There’s more. Oh, lots more!

Let’s face it. We’re all readers here. We all have likes and dislikes, favorites and not so favorites. Just for grins and giggles—and to appease my curiosity—here’s a list of questions that have been rolling around in my mind.

Are you a series reader?

Do you like reading about characters from past books who slide easily into and out of stories?

If you had a choice between a non-series book and a series book by, say, your favorite author, which would you buy?

Do you read each series book as it comes out, or do you save them to read one after the other?

What’s the one thing you especially like (or dislike) about series?

With the poor economy we’re dealing with, would you forego buying a series book, feeling that once the first is bought, you’re locked into buying the rest?

Have you always, like me, loved series books?

What’s your favorite series, whether from childhood or as an adult?

Have fun!

Wednesday, February 17, 2010


In my previous blog post, I talked about one of my hands-down, no-holds-barred, all-time-favorite subjects, chocolate.

And I confessed I’m a chocoholic.

Just to recap: this New Year’s Day, I gave up chocolate, and with my previous post, many people weighed in on my question as to whether or not I should put that sweet treat back on my menu. In case you were wondering...

...the answer is...


(Oh, the relief! LOL)

Of course, you know it wasn’t an easy decision. I agonized, weighed all the pros and cons, even considered alternative suggestions. What I came up with was a list:

The Top Three Rules for Chocolate Consumption

1. Dark chocolate trumps any other kind, as it’s practically a health food.

2. It’s best to keep chocolate out of the house and save it as a treat away from home.

3. Chocolate (dark, of course) should be eaten in moderation.

Well, it’s confession time again, folks.

#1 I can live with. Sometimes.

#2 seems like it will be doable--just as soon as I polish off those last few candy bars in the pantry....

#3 is not something I can even think about at this time. (I told you I was weak, didn’t I? At least I’m honest.)

But, hey, two out of three ain’t bad.

Thanks to those of you who weighed in with your opinions and comments and have made me a better, stronger, healthier woman as a result!

All my best to you,



Barbara White Daille

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

Earthquake in my backyard--practically

I live in the Chicago area so cold weather and lots of snow are the norm during the winter and compared to the East coast we've gotten off easy this season (knock on wood). I think Midwest driver's are some of the best driver's in the country when it comes tooling down the road in snow and ice--doesn’t mean we're immune to accidents, but as a population we seldom panic or change our plans when the weatherman forecasts snow. We bundle up, shovel the drive and head to work and school.

So snow had never been a big deal in my life--I grew up in Wisconsin--plenty of cold and snow there, too. What I'm not used to are earthquakes. On the 9th of this month an earthquake shook the corn fields not far from the development we live in. Around four in the morning the headboard on our bed banged against the wall and our two little yappers sleeping at the bottom of the bed began to whine. I though a plane was going to hit our house. I ran into the hallway just as my two teenagers opened their bedroom doors and asked, "What's going on?" It's difficult to explain how loud the rumble sounded, but you know it was loud if it woke teenagers out of a dead sleep.

I peaked out the windows--all my neighbors we're doing the same thing. I searched the sky for a spiraling plane when my daughter informed me that it was probably an earthquake. She then named the faults that run through Illinois before yawning and returning to bed--smarty pants. Anyway we were fortunate--no cracked walls or broken vases. But I have a new appreciation and sympathy for people who've suffered through much bigger quakes--I can't imagine how frightening those were. My deceased father-in-law survived the famous San Francisco Bay area earthquake back in October 1989.

How about you--have you experienced an earthquake or any wild weather events where you live?

A Cowboy Christmas
Dec 2009
Dexter: Honorable Cowboy July 2010

Monday, February 15, 2010


Well, like Laura in Tulsa, Texas has been hit with a pretty insane winter. Twenty-four hours of the fluffy white stuff fell on Thursday. Gorgeous! At our house in a rural neighborhood close to Dallas, we ended up with a foot of snow. It was impossible to concentrate on the day job for wandering to the window to look out. But if watching it fall Thursday wasn’t pretty enough, we awoke Friday to a winter wonderland. See the picture out the small leaded glass window on our front door. Looks sort of like one of those Christmas snow globes, doesn't it?

Friday my mom and I were warm and cozy and I was working away, glancing out at nature's beauty. Hubby got to drive his truck to work and I don’t think you could have paid him to stay home. Alpha male, 4X4, and a foot of snow! WooHoo! Right up his alley. Then my aunt called and they’d been without power since Thursday night and couldn’t get out of their steep drive. So DH swung by when he got off and picked them up. Friday night, warm fire, good food, and we were five.

Saturday, my son and his two boys showed up. Then my younger son and daughter-in-law popped in and my granddaughter tossed a fit to stay and play with her cousins. Granted our youngest son and DIL went home and our oldest and his two boys planned to do the same after dinner, but voila, his brother left with the keys to his truck. (Or so we thought, as they turned up later. Long story.) Minus the snow, this revolving door is a pretty typical weekend at our house. But still, Saturday night and we were nine.

We enjoyed a weekend full of food, fun, and family. What else could we do except cook and eat? Play in the snow. Feed the birds.

For Valentine’s Day on Sunday, the power came back on at my aunt and uncle’s house. Grandkids went home. And we were back to three. Although it's been an entertaining, fun, white adventure, I’m looking forward to the sanity of a normal routine.

I'm not sure where we're living. This doesn't even resemble a Texas winter, but isn't the front yard gorgeous.

Sunday, February 14, 2010

Happy Valentine's Day!!! Hope you're all having a super romantic day!!

Alas, I just put hubby on a plane bound for Toronto, Canada so looks like I've only got kids and dogs to hug and smooch!! This month's pic is of Hubby on a trip to Cozumel. We rented a Jeep and found this hidden beach bar that looked straight from a Corona commercial. Pure bliss!!

Tonight, my oldest son is making me a steak dinner, so that'll be yummy!! I've been baking cookies for two days, helping Hannah with her Valentine gifting. We made sugar cookies and peanut butter blossoms with Hershey Kisses on top. I'm supposed to be dieting, but somehow sweets keep ending up in my mouth!!

This morning we had a surprise snow, which was exciting. Tulsa has had a bizarre winter. Lots of ice and snow. I was born in Michigan and remember blizzards that kept us in the house for days. The neighbors would hide out together, sharing board games and great food. Now, while everyone else grumbles, I secretly love every beautiful flake!!

So what's everyone doing for V-Day? Any big surprises or impromptu trips? Let me know so I can live vicariously through you!! LOL!!