May 30, 2013

the.book.chat. {cookbooks}


So, this week we are talking about COOKBOOKS!  They're books, right?  Our co-host this week is the lovely miss Angie of Angie Eats Peace.  She's a super-sweet tree hugger, and I like her.  Go show some love.

I had the idea for this week's topic to do more than just list my favorites.  Honestly, I don't have many "favorites".  So, rather, I thought it would be fun to pick a new cookbook and try a recipe, then share it here.  When browsing the cookbook section of the library, this one jumped out immediately.  HOW COULD I NOT?  I mean, it's the book chat.

So, honestly, when I saw this book on the shelves a few months back, I laughed.  Because it's freakin funny, people.  Let me get that out of the way first.  The inside is hilarious.  The writer (Fowler, get it?) goes all the way with this parody (goes all the way...get it? (okay I'll stop)) .  No, really though.  It's creative and had me cracking up.  Before each recipe is a little narrative from the chicken.  I was dying. There were provocative pictures of the half-naked chef tying up the chicken...and stuffing the chicken.  Okay, I'm done.  Take it from me, it was clever and I appreciated it.

For this reason, I really didn't think it could be taken seriously as a cookbook.  I figured it was a gag gift.  But actually, I was pleasantly surprised.  These were some fancy-schmancy recipes.  And very creative.  I wanted to choose a fancy recipe with cherries and white wine and rosemary...but Jeremy saw the pic of a chicken covered in bacon...



So, I made this recipe instead.  Basically, a whole chicken rubbed down with paprika, stuffed with oranges (or tangerines!) and covered in bacon.  It was easy and delicious!  The boys gobbled it up (get it...sorry).  I would easily recommend this as a legit cookbook.  

Oh and for the record...this is the view from my kitchen window.  It was hard not to feel a little guilty.


Okay, now it's your turn.  Share a favorite cookbook or review a new one.  Anything on the topic is fine.  You're not BOUND to these ideas.  *chuckle*

Next week, in light of BEA taking place this week (have fun if you're going, I hate you) let's talk about BOOK BLOGGING.  Anything and everything on the topic.  Do you consider yourself a book blogger?  Do you write reviews, receive ARCs or have you met any good authors?  Has blogging changed how and what you read?  WHO are your favorite book bloggers?


To join in...
1. Please follow the host and co-host
2. Visit a few other book chat links and show some support.
3. Link back here in your post.  Or use the button provided.
4. Old posts are always welcome if you have blogged on the topic before.

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Laters, baby.


May 28, 2013

Book Review: Love Rehab





Love Rehab: A novel in twelve steps
by Jo Piazza

Published by: Open Road Media
Date: June 4, 2013
Rating: 3.5 out of 5 stars
Source: NetGalley (thank you!)



 After Sophie's ugly breakup leaves her ice-cream-eating in pajamas on her Grandma's couch and her best friend, Annie's alcohol-induced escapades lands her in AA, together they form Love Rehab, a retreat for New York's most love-sick addicts.  Hilarity ensues.


The first couple chapters of this book had me rolling.  The beginning was drenched in cynicism and sarcasm and I was loving it.  I haven't read many books that had me laughing out loud.  This one had me laughing out loud and with duration.  It was quirky and real.

The laughter load lightens a bit toward the meat and bones of the story, which was slightly disappointing, but still enjoyable.  I really felt like I understood what each girl was going through.  It was tender when it needed to be tender and gritty when it needed to be gritty.

It was basically a rom-com that was heavier on the com than the rom.   It gets a little cheesy at moments, but overall, it's a quick, fun read that is perfect for a poolside respite.

Find it here // Goodreads // Amazon // Barnes & Noble


May 23, 2013

the.book.chat. {war/history novels}

Okay, so I apologize that I fell through as your fearless leader (as Erinn calls me) this week.  You see, even though the people at the internet company speak perfect English, we still managed to misunderstand one another.  They said our permanent internet line was ready to go. We said "thanks" and turned in our data stick and went home.  A whole 24 hours later we still had no internet.  We went back in and they said, "oh, just kidding.  You don't have internet, yet" and they gave us back the little data stick.  So for an entire night, I had no internet.  And every Wednesday night, I have a routine.  I put the kids to bed and sit down with a cup o' joe and write my book chat post.  Last night, I couldn't do that.  Then today was a very busy day, so I'm very sorry that I was not able to get my book chat post up!  Thankfully, Erinn was here to save the day. :)  Thank you, Erinn!!


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While we're on the topic of the book chat, I've decided that for a whole year I was a kick-ass host and made individual buttons each week for each topic.  I'll pat myself on the back for that now, but from here on out, it's just going to be the one standard button.  I'm not in love with it, so if you have some button making skills, let me know.  The Book Chat needs a brand (oh I'm such a blogger, I just said brand).  I will try to post the next 2-3 book chat topics on the sidebar and in my posts so you can keep up.

Okay, moving on.
For this week's topic, we are discussing historical novels or war-themed novels.  Well...sometimes you don't even realize that you don't read a certain genre, even when you think you do!  We discussed historical fiction before, and I wrote up a post about holocaust (non)fiction that I love.  This time I wanted to focus on American history.  The funny thing is...I haven't read ANY American history fiction!  I'm a little ashamed about this.  In my defense, I've taken a lot of US history classes and we have read plenty in there.

Here are a few on my list that I'd like to read...





As for War-based fiction, here's one that's been on my list for a while...


Have you read any of these? Can you recommend a good history/war novel?  

I'll leave the link-up open for a few days so you still have time to join in.
I hope you all have a great weekend!  

To join in...
1. Please follow the host and co-host
2. Visit a few other book chat links and show some support.
3. Link back here in your post.  Or use the button provided.
4. Old posts are always welcome if you have blogged on the topic before.





Next week's book chat: Favorite cookbook.  For a little extra fun, grab a new cookbook (the library has them) and do a new recipe out of it.  Then share a review.  Hey, why not?!

May 21, 2013

Tunesday Guest Post: Lindsey's Top Eight Albums

I have another special guest post for you guys today.  Lindsey is here to share her top 8 albums.  Aren't you always so intrigued by people's favorite albums?  I think it says a lot about a person.  Telling by Lindsey's selection, she is A) a lot like me and B) clearly, very cool.  

Hi everyone! I'm so excited to be posting for Jessica today here on Sweet Green Tangerine. I'm Lindsey and I blog over at Lounging with Lindsey, where I blog about whatever tickles my fancy and my new baby, Liam.
I blog about books occasionally, but when Jessica gave a couple ideas on what to guest post about I decided on music. I rarely do, so I thought it would be fun.

I wasn't always a music person. I mean, I listened to the radio in the car, but I didn't expand my music listening beyond "radio" music. My husband on the other hand has always been big into music. When we first started dating he asked me what kind of music I listened to and I was like, "Uh, the radio..." as if there was nothing else out there. He asked me if I listened to anything else and I said, "The Grey's Anatomy soundtrack." It was a pretty chill CD so he decided to find me music that I would like based on that.

A few days later we were at Best Buy--you remember those days, right? The days where you had to go to the store to buy a CD?--and he bought me Iron & Wine - Our Endless Numbered Days. I loved it instantly and it's still one of my favorites.

Here are my other favorites (there are only 8 because it was too hard to narrow it down beyond that).
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Circa Survive - Juturna // Iron & Wine - Our Endless Numbered Days // City and Colour - Bring Me Your Love // Of Monsters and Men - My Head Is An Animal // Isles and Glaciers - The Hearts of Lonely People // A Fine Frenzy - Once Cell In The Sea // Dierks Bentley - Modern Day Drifter // Lower Definition - The Greatest of All Lost Arts

Of those 8 albums, only Dierks Bentley was not introduced to me by my husband. I had a crush on Dierks because that's what my husband looked like in high school (back when I had a crush on him).  Also, I only allowed myself to pick one album per artist, otherwise Circa Survive might have had 3 or 4 of the top albums. That also made it difficult to pick my favorite Dierks Bentley album. A couple CDs are also harder since I've become accustom to my husbands music.

I hope you'll go check out some of those bands on iTunes, Spotify, or whatever other music listening program you use. I also hope to see you over at my blog.

A huge thank you to Jessica for allowing me to take over your blog today. I can't wait to read more about your big move and all of your adventures in Germany!


May 20, 2013

Book Review: Bittersweet Blood by Nina Croft





Bittersweet Blood
Author: Nina Croft
Publisher: Entangled
Date: February 17, 2013
Genre: Paranormal Romance
Source: NetGalley (Thank you!)
Rating: 4 out of 5 stars

Bittersweet Blood is one of those urban-fantasy-para-romance books.  When the mood strikes, I can just gobble this genre right up.  It's fun.  It's sexy.  It's intriguing and magical.





Tara just wants a normal 20-something life in London; however, after her mysterious aunt's death, she begins to break all of the rules and discovers that there is absolutely nothing normal about her.  Throw in a sexy vampire to guide her and every character from the fantasy world you can imagine, and you have a damn good story in the city.

Werewolves, and witches and fairies, oh my!  Most novels take on one or two of the paranormal, but this series seems to be taking them all on, and I love that.  Why not?  So many possibilities.  I was genuinely shocked at every revelation and jaw-dropper.  I love a book that can shock me.  I hate predictability.  This one had so many great twists that I didn't see coming.

I loved Tara's character.  She was sweet, but tough and knew how to stand her ground.  I felt like I really got to know her and she was unique.  A lot of times in these para-romance novels, the characters just sort of blend and don't stand out.  I really felt Tara's voice in this story and I really liked her a lot.

At the start, this story began to run a path a little to close to a Fifty Shades parody for my taste.  I really didn't want this story's Christian to be like that other story's Christian.  Thankfully, he wasn't.  He wasn't a phenomenally intriguing character, and I hope she develops him into something less perfect and more interesting in the next few books, but I still thought their relationship was sexy and sweet.  It had the right amount of tension without him being a controlling psychopath...whew!

This series has a lot of potential and though I would have liked for her to take more risks and break the mold of the para-romance genre, I will definitely be picking up the sequel to this first book.  I just hope she sticks with Tara's journey.  I cannot wait to see how this character develops over time.

Find it here:
Goodreads // Amazon // Barnes & Nobles

Only $3.79 on e-reader!  Grab it for a great summer read!



May 16, 2013

the.book.chat. {bookshelves}

I'm very sorry for having to cancel the book chat last week.  It was just one of those weeks when I needed a time-out to regroup.  Things are much better this week.  I'm starting to feel more comfortable and really feeling at home.
It's good to be back.

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Okay, I know I wasn't the only little girl who watched Beauty and the Beast and was totally in love with that library he gave her.  They taught us young, love a man who gives you a room full of books.  Ever since that first scene when she sings on the library ladder, I have always wanted a book shelf with a ladder.  If you have so many books that you need a ladder to reach them, you must be doing something right.  Someday, I will have my own personal library.  Someday.

However...for now we are living in Cozy (the adorable apartment needed a name).

To be honest, I'm actually having more fun decorating a small space rather than a large space.  It's not so intimidating.  Large spaces scare me.  One of things I'm worried about though is what to do with all of my books.  We don't have a ton of extra wall space to put big book cases on. (No ladder book shelves here) So, we're having to get creative with our organization.  I've been scouring design books and blogs and coming up with fun ideas.

These are a few of my favorites I've found...

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This adds such a cozy feeling to the room, doesn't it?  Why have I never thought of this?

I'm more free-spirited than my husband.  I have a feeling this would bother him, but I kinda dig it.  It makes the books look like they're actually read and not hidden away in the corner.

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Can we say book shelf envy?  This would be great, but I have no clue how to install something like this.  But it would be lovely, wouldn't it?

I love this couple's tips on Styling a Bookshelf.  They don't have a ton of books on the shelf, but I really love the idea of putting more than books on the book shelf.  I tend to over-fill my book shelves.  If I only put a handful of books on each book shelf, let's be real, I'd need about a hundred book shelves.  (Wouldn't we all?)  But I love their tips on placing some items horizontal and some vertical.  In their book, they mention taking the book sleeves off and showing off the bare spine.  Why didn't I think of that!  That's why they're my favorite design blog.


Books make for great decor.  They're functional, entertaining and make your space look great.  I love the look of a room full of books.  I want a room literally spilling with books.  Walls covered with them. Books on the floor and on chairs and tables.  Books on the windowsill and in the kitchen.  Throw in that library smell and call it home.

What about you?  What does your dream book shelf look like?  Or do you have a book shelf you want to show off?  Any tips for this small-space first-timer?  Link up with me.



I chose not to include a co-host this week.  My internet connection has been, in a word, unreliable.  I didn't want to promise someone the spot, then never come through with details.


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To join in...
1. Please follow the host and co-host
2. Visit a few other book chat links and show some support.
3. Link back here in your post.  Or use the button provided.
4. Old posts are always welcome if you have blogged on the topic before.



Upcoming Book Chats...
May 23 - Wartime & Historical books with co-host It's the Journey
May 30 - Cookbooks with co-host Angie Eats Peace


May 13, 2013

The Search for the Elusive Internet

You know things are bad when I don't blog for a whole week.  You know things are bad when I don't read for days in a row.  You know things are bad when I haven't opened my Twitter app in four days.

Well, honestly, things aren't THAT bad.  I'm too superstitious to say that things are ever BAD in fear that the universe would laugh at me and then make things worse.  Even after Jonathan broke his arm two days in country, I refused to say how bad things were.  Even after dealing with tiny apartment anxiety and finding out only HALF of our things would be arriving (the second half later), I refused to say things were BAD.  Even after our car got a flat tire and a dead battery. Even after my husband's laptop broke.  Even after my dog was almost eaten alive by a German Shepard (touché).  Even after all of that, I wouldn't say things were BAD.

BUT...

When the internet company told us that there were not enough available DSL ports in our village and we would likely not be able to get a permanently installed internet connection, well that's when the words "THIS IS BAD" were about to come out of my mouth.  I'm in the midst of an online degree.  I was in despair over the thought of being exiled from the blogiverse.  Without internet, we couldn't skype with our parents or call them on our Vonage phone.  The best they could do was a limited data stick that we blew through in one week.

For anyone who has ever said that technology makes you anti-social, I say bull!  The internet and my phone are what make us MORE social.  I know, I've lived without it.  I can't talk to my mom.  I can't see photos of my nieces & nephews.  I can't hear what's new in the music world.  I can't read my best friends' blogs. My kids can't video chat with their grandparents.  This whole theory of anti-social technology has been disproven, as far as I'm concerned.

So, we actually considered moving.  We spoke to the housing office, we began to look up moving trucks and new places.  My quirky apartment and amazing views had nothing on the importance of internet.  But alas, that very day we received an email from the internet company saying that they had  began construction on a new DSL line.  Basically, I'm not holding my breath.  For now, I'll deal with the data sticks as long as I know that in 2-3 weeks, I will have something more reliable.  I'm still able to do my class online, just can't watch the videos.  And look at this, I'm blogging.

So, I'm sorry that I have been absent.  I'm not going to lie to you...I shed real tears over having to cancel last week's book chat.  But don't you fret, the book chat WILL go on this week.

I'm excited about this one too.  This week is all about bookshelves.  Here's a whole site called Bookshelf Porn.  Fun, right? I'm trying to design my books' space in the new apartment so I'm scouring the web for ideas.  I thought this would be a fun little prompt.  You can share photos of your favorite bookshelves.  You can design your own, or give us a mood board of what your dream library space would include.  Have fun with it.  Pinterest is a good start.

As for the internet situation, I will keep you posted.  Even if I have to blog by way of carrier pigeon, I will keep blogging.  I thought about it today and considered what would happen if I just stopped blogging.  If I never sat down to write another post again, and honestly, it would be easy to just stop, but my life wouldn't be as fulfilling, that much is true.  Essentially, I would be less me.

Moving to another country has taught me that it is very hard to maintain the life you are used to living when you are not surrounded by the same things, people, customs, comforts as before.  It is a bit scary to feel like you're not living the same life as before.  It's hard to maintain the same habits and hobbies and feel the same way about them.  Basically, everything in your life must evolve with the change of scenery.  Therefore, my blog will have to evolve too.  It won't go away, it will just morph a little bit to fit my new life.  Book reviews and charming pictures of Jude are two things you can definitely count on.

If you read through that entire post, you should be rewarded with cuteness.




May 3, 2013

April / May Recap

I appreciate all of the positive feedback from the last monthly recap I did. By request...here is what happened in April and what's in story for May...

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Children's books

Books set in Europe

Coffee table books

Strangest books

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Top Ten Character Crushes

My All-Time Favorite Albums

Book-Lover of the Month: Brighton

Turning 30...

Guest Post: Travel Tips from Melissa

Our New Apartment

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Khaled Hosseini, the #1 New York Times-bestselling author of The Kite Runner and A Thousand Splendid Suns, has written a new novel about how we love, how we take care of one another, and how the choices we make resonate through generations

I LOVED The Kite Runner and A Thousand Splendid Suns. I cannot wait to read this one, and I have no clue what it's about.

Release Date: May 21, 2013

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    • May 2nd: Book Hangovers
    • May 9th: Best Moms of Literature
    • May 16th: Bookshelf Porn
    • May 23rd: Favorite Historical Era or War-themed book
    • May 30th: Cookbook Review - Cook up a recipe out of a cookbook & share a review! Or just share your favorite cookbook.

    I need co-hosts for all of the book chats in May! Leave me a comment or email me if you want to co-host! It's easy, fun & drives traffic to your site.

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    The National

    Trouble Will Find Me

    Release Date: May 21, 2013

    This is going to be so good.


    So that's what's going on in May. What are you excited about this month? Any new releases you are looking forward to?