Thursday, May 31, 2018

13 Years Blogging

It's my blogoversary!

It's hard to believe that 13 years ago I began blogging. It was quite sporadic at first and I had no idea what to write about. I still pretty much write about whatever I want most days and I'm glad that so many of you seem to enjoy my blog posts.  

When I first started we had been given a computer because Ken's sister was getting a new one. This was our very first computer and we had no idea what we were doing. She had left a few things on it and told Ken he could just delete whatever he didn't want. Well, he had no idea what he was doing and ended up deleting the Windows OS and we had to call Ken's brother and he sent us a disc to install that gave us a new Windows OS. 

We also didn't know you're supposed to have anti virus protection or that you should clear your history and cache every once in a while. We went well over a year without either of those things and wondered how in the world we had so many viruses and things that were slowing the computer down to a crawl until one of our teenage daughter's friends came over and explained it to us. It was pretty comical but live and learn and now we know. Because of all the computer problems back then I would use the library computers but you could only use them for 1 hour per day. So I wasn't posting all that often for a while. And I only had 3 followers when I started out so when I started getting more followers and people commenting, I really enjoyed that. 

I've changed a lot in the past 13 years. My daughter is grown and she has a son. Ken and I are celebrating 27 years together this September and now instead of hamsters and rats we have a dog. 

So for all of you followers that have been here a long time and for those of you that are fairly new I just want to say thank you for visiting, commenting and enjoying what I've been posting over the years. I hope we'll all be around and blogging for many years to come.

Wednesday, May 30, 2018

Favorite Picture of the Week

A couple of weeks ago my brother found this bull snake on the ATV his son and grandson were on. Thankfully it's a harmless bull snake but it scared the bejuju's outta them. They just moved to the middle of the desert in Northern Nevada and there seems to be a lot of snakes around there. He let the snake go after getting a picture of it. 

Tuesday, May 29, 2018

Review: Walmart Beauty Box- May

The Walmart Beauty box is a subscription box that comes out 4 times a year. You sign up for it and it comes automatically every 3 months. These boxes are just $5 each and shipping is free. 

There were quite a few samples in this box. 

Here's what was in this month's Walmart Beauty Box

Jergen's Wet Skin Moisturizer
Pantene Foam Conditioner
Hello Activated Charcoal Toothpaste
Dove Exfoliating Body Polish
Aveeno Yogurt Body Wash
Donkey Milk Skin Gel Facial Mask

That's quite a few samples for just $5. I'm very happy with this box and so far I've liked everything that I've tried. I think this box was well worth the $5 I spent on it. I love getting all these sample size bottles of products that I can try before I buy a full size bottle. If you haven't signed up for the Walmart Beauty Box yet and you like what you see in this box, sign up.

And if you have or are expecting a baby, Walmart now has a Baby Box that you can sign up for.

I was happy to see the Jergen's Wet Skin Moisturizer and the Pantene Conditioner because I've tried both of these things before and really liked them. I will say that the Pantene Conditioner really doesn't work any better than the conditioner that comes in a bottle though. And the Dove body polish smells so darn good. I love seeing samples of that in these boxes. 

I'm not sure about the activated charcoal toothpaste. I really don't think it works as well as the Crest Pro Health HD 2 step toothpaste that I've been using for a couple of years. I think I'll stick with that toothpaste.

The sheet masks just crack me up though. They seem to be all the rage right now and I don't see that they moisturize any better than applying a little moisturizer to your face from a bottle and the masks make my dog bark at me so there's that. *giggle/snort* 

Do you have a favorite subscription box?

Monday, May 28, 2018

Happy Raturday!

*Picture courtesy of*

"Do you know what isle the yogis are on?"

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"I turn into part elf when you gib me peanut butter."

*Picture courtesy of*

"I have mai glasses in case of eclipse."

*Picture courtesy of*

"This doesn't taste like chocolate."

*Picture courtesy of*

"Dis parfait is so good it gave me the googly eyes."

Sunday, May 27, 2018

Apartment Life #29

This is a new weekly blog post that I'm calling Apartment Hell  Life. I've mentioned a few times some of the crazy things that go on in and around my apartment complex in the past 20 years that we've lived here and people keep telling me I should write a book. But instead of a book, I've decided to share the crazy things that have happened in and around my apartment complex in the last 20 years here in a weekly blog post.

Back in February of 2016 these two guys across the street from me put on boxing gloves and started duking it out right in the middle of the street.

They hit each other a few times and then called it quits. I guess they got tired. I thought this picture was funny because the look on that guys face says, "Oh shit, he's gonna hit me!" lol 

The bald guy always thought he was a badass around here. He was a security guard somewhere and always wore his gun on his belt. This is an open carry state so he was allowed to do that but with the police being in this area so often, I always thought he was just asking for trouble doing that. 

So that's it for this week's Apartment Hell  Life! Be sure to come back next week for more.

Saturday, May 26, 2018

Favorite Video of the Week

This is actually pretty funny. What cats really think of dogs.

Friday, May 25, 2018

Freebie Friday!

Welcome to another edition of Freebie Friday, where I tell you what free samples and full sized products I received in the mail and how you can get them too. Someone asked me why I do a "Freebie Friday" each week, so I'll tell you.

A while back I listed all the free samples and wins that I had received that previous year and so many people didn't believe that I could have gotten so many free things. So I decided to prove it by taking a picture every week and sharing the sites that I found the links to the freebies at. So now you too can get great free samples coming to your mailbox each week.

  You can find links to great samples at Hey It's Free and Freebie Shark.

This week I received:
A $5 Amazon gift card from Crowdtap.
A sample of Nutrish Peak dog food.
A sample of Sephora Lipstick in the color- Belly Dancing.
A sample of Derma E Firming Moisturizer.

The lipstick sample if a cute color so I liked that. I've now tied several derma e products and they are good moisturizers but I can't tell that they do anything else. My dog has had this dog food before and he likes it.

Did you receive any samples this week?

Thursday, May 24, 2018

Review: Wild Hunger by Suzanne Wright (Book 7)

Book Description

When half–wolf shifter Frankie Newman receives an e-mail from a family member she didn’t know existed, a secret is revealed: as a child, Frankie witnessed her father killing her mother…and then himself. Frankie was torn from her pack by her mother’s human relatives, and the trauma was erased from her memory. Realizing that she’s been lied to her entire life, she’s never felt more alone. Until she catches the scent of an old friend—warmly familiar and intoxicating.

Trick Hardy, enforcer of the Phoenix Pack, can sense the rush of mutual attraction when he sees Frankie again. He knows immediately that she’s his true mate. But he also knows that, given her fragile state, he needs to tread with care—no matter how fierce his surging desires.

As aroused as Frankie is by Trick’s darkly dominant air and simmering desire, her priority right now is her past—not her future, no matter how tempting. But as more secrets emerge and Frankie’s life is threatened, Trick must do everything he can to keep her close and safe. After all, it’s their destiny.

My Review

I should start by saying that I haven't read this series in order. I've only read 2 of the other books in this series but I didn't feel that I was missing much or lost while reading this book. 

Frankie makes a living making sculptures that sometimes were of a dark or spooky nature. Frankie is half shifter but was raised by her human family after she was traumatized as a child and taken away from the pack by her human side of the family. She knew she was part shifter but she didn't know anything of the pack her father had belonged to because her grandparents who raised her told her lies her entire life. Frankie only finds out about the pack she belongs to when her aunt reaches out to her. 

Trick is part of her aunt's pack so Trick goes with Frankie's aunt to meet her for the first time in 24 years. It's at this meeting that he realizes that Frankie is his mate. After Frankie comes to his pack's home to meet her grandmother and other family members, he's already trying to get closer to her. Trick wasn't satisfied to let her make her mind up about him on her own terms, he went to her on several occasions after she met her grandmother and the other family members so they could get to know each other. 

While Frankie is getting to know her dad's side of the family, her mom's parents who raised her are constantly trying to get her to leave the pack in the past. Her uncle is very mad that she's decided to get to know the wolf side of her family as he sees them as a bunch of animals. The uncle is a total ass and I really didn't like him at all.

There's also a side story of a pack of wolves that wants an alliance with Trick's alpha, Trey. But this other pack and its leader are a bunch thugs for the most part and Trey wants no part of an alliance with them but their alpha won't take no for an answer.

Frankie is getting to know her new family members but she thinks that she saw something bad when she was three years old and just can't remember what it was. I thought I knew where this story line was going but I was wrong. There's a big reveal, a nice twist that I didn't see coming and family secrets come to light. I really like it when I think I know where a story is going and am totally wrong and a great twist is thrown my way. 

I really didn't care for Frankie's maternal grandparents. They have a lot of money and kept her away from her father's side of the family because of something terrible that happened even though they knew that Frankie was half wolf shifter and as a kid was scared of shifting for the first time. She grew up without a pack or other shifters in her life because of them and I really despised them for that.

Trick and Frankie are great together and I like how these shifters just know when they find their true mates and how the bond lets them get really close. 

While I haven't read all the books in this series, I didn't need to in order to enjoy this book. This series is really good and I'm enjoying it quite a bit. 

I give this book 4 out of 5 stars. 

Disclosure: I received a free copy via NetGalley, I voluntarily read and reviewed an advanced copy of this book. All thoughts and opinions are my own. 

Wednesday, May 23, 2018

Review: Wolf of Her Own by N.J. Walters

Book Description

Mikhail Matheson came to Salvation for his sister, but he stayed for Elise LaForge. She’s the alpha’s mother and the most fascinating woman he’s ever laid his eyes on. He’s wanted her from the first moment he saw her. He may feel like an outsider in the pack, but there’s no way he can leave when he’s sure Elise is his mate.

Elise’s made a home in North Carolina with her adult sons and their pack. It’s taken her a long time to get over the years she spent with her abusive mate, and while she’s content now, she can’t help but feel there’s something missing in her life. Mikhail stirs emotions in her she never expected to feel, and the attraction between them is off the charts. But Elise’s not sure how her sons and the pack will react, not to mention the danger the pack is facing.

My Review

Mikhail might have come to the Salvation pack for his sister but as soon as he finds Elise, he knows he can't leave. 

Elise has a lot of baggage because of the years she spent with her abusive ex. She might be cautious when Mikhail is around but she feels something for him and that in itself is a small miracle since she wasn't sure she was healed enough emotionally to take another chance on a relationship. 

Mikhail is very patient with Elise and I really liked that about him. He's pretty sure that Elise is his mate but he knows he's gonna have to take his time with her and her family if this is gonna work out. Neither of them are sure how her two sons are going to react to them seeing each other especially since one of her sons is the pack's alpha. I ended up really liking her sons.

When the father of one of the females in the pack wants to come and visit his daughter that he hasn't seen in a long time, they are all on edge but what happens while he is there is not something that any of them could see coming. 

Elise is stronger than she thinks and I really admired her for being able to move past what she's been through and find happiness again. But Mikhail is everything that any woman could ask for. He's patient, romantic, totally alpha and nurturing. He's exactly what she needed in her life. 

I really liked Elise's grown sons even if they were a little over protective, they meant well and love their mom a lot. 

This is one of those books that I wish I could just say something like, "It's great! You need to read it!" And everyone would read it and see what I mean. I read this book in one sitting because it was just that hard to put down once I started reading. I felt invested in the characters to see what would happen next and I was very happy with the ending. It ended exactly how it should have. I'll definitely be reading more of this series and highly recommend this book and series.

I give this book 5 out of 5 stars. 

Disclosure: I received this book for free via NetGalley but all opinions are my own. 

Tuesday, May 22, 2018

Review: Banana Boat Dry Balance Sunscreen Lotion

*Click on picture to enlarge*

This year I knew that I was going to have to get a sunscreen for my face or a foundation that had sunscreen in it. Since I haven't found a foundation with sunscreen that I like, I started trying samples of the different sunscreens that are out there. Most of them are really scented or very oily so when I received a sample of this in the mail I was hopeful since it said, "Helps you feel dry & fresh".  

I've now been wearing this sunscreen on my face under my foundation, powder,  ect and it really does stay dry. After rubbing it in, it has a matte finish that doesn't become oily later and the scent is very subtle, kind of like a baby powder type scent, which I like. It also has a SPF 30 so hopefully that will help prevent the weird sunburn I get around the sunglasses I wear outside when walking the dog. My nose and temple area got toasty brown last year by the time summer ended which looked weird when the rest of my face was still very pale. So I'm hoping to keep that from happening this summer and so far so good. It's been well into the 90's and 100's here recently and so far my nose and the rest of my face hasn't started to sunburn or tan. 

So I am going to give this product a thumbs up at this point because it sure does seem to be working the way I want. 

Monday, May 21, 2018

Happy Raturday!

*Picture courtesy of*

*Picture courtesy of*

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*Picture courtesy of*

"For anyone having a birthday this month"

Sunday, May 20, 2018

Apartment Life #28

This is a new weekly blog post that I'm calling Apartment Hell  Life. I've mentioned a few times some of the crazy things that go on in and around my apartment complex in the past 20 years that we've lived here and people keep telling me I should write a book. But instead of a book, I've decided to share the crazy things that have happened in and around my apartment complex in the last 20 years here in a weekly blog post.

Back in 2014 we had a neighbor who would call the police on himself all the time. I had called the police 2 nights prior to this incident because he started screaming and yelling at no one because no one was around...but he claimed that the managers son had threatened his life and he wanted a restraining order. So this guys calls the police, I know this because he was outside while he was screaming at dispatch on his phone. No one went to jail because the incident never happened. This guy has brain damage from an accident and his mother pays for all his bills but in the mean time he drove us all crazy and because of the way he acted all the time the manager finally evicted him. He lived 2 doors from me so we got front row seats to the insanity.

Update for this week:

3 days ago a neighbor asked the manager and maintenance man to do a welfare check on an elderly neighbor because no one had seen him for 2 days. The manager didn't want to so the neighbor called police and asked them to do a welfare check on the guy. They came at 10pm and since the manager wouldn't answer the emergency phone or her door, they kicked the door in and found the elderly man had died in his bed. Police and the coroner were in the apartment for hours and we went to bed. The next day Ken was talking to the maintenance guy and said the manager called the man's son who lives in another state and his son said he wanted nothing from the apartment so the manager and maintenance guy went through the apartment and took what they wanted before trashing the apartment out. The comical thing was that people from that courtyard were standing around outside while they were taking things out of the apartment and the maintenance guy said a couple of people asked about certain things the guy had and if they could have it if no one else wanted it but the maintenance guy told them everything was going in the trash and if they wanted to pick through the trash they could but no one was being allowed in the apartment. That sure got the gossip flying around the apartment complex.

So that's it for this week's Apartment Hell  Life! Be sure to come back next week for more.

Saturday, May 19, 2018

Favorite Video of the Week

I don't listen to Ed Sheeran but I watched this parody of one of his songs and I found it really funny. I had no idea there were so many parodies of music videos out there.

Friday, May 18, 2018

Freebie Friday!

Welcome to another edition of Freebie Friday, where I tell you what free samples and full sized products I received in the mail and how you can get them too. Someone asked me why I do a "Freebie Friday" each week, so I'll tell you.

A while back I listed all the free samples and wins that I had received that previous year and so many people didn't believe that I could have gotten so many free things. So I decided to prove it by taking a picture every week and sharing the sites that I found the links to the freebies at. So now you too can get great free samples coming to your mailbox each week.

  You can find links to great samples at Hey It's Free and Freebie Shark.

This week I received:

A Mini Tripod with Bluetooth Shutter from Marlboro.
Amdro Mosquito Bombs.

I also won a $25 Amazon Gift Card in the March New Release Giveaway from Love Kissed Books!

We gave the mini tripod to our daughter since neither one of us has a smartphone and she does and that's what this worked with. You can set the smartphone on the mini tripod and set it up to take selfies or pictures using the shutter you can hold in your hand. Another fun freebie from

The mosquito bombs can be placed in standing water like pools, bird baths, buckets ect to kill off mosquitoes.

Did you receive any freebies or win anything this week?

Thursday, May 17, 2018

Review: DegustaBox- May

DegustaBox is a monthly subscription box filled with food and drink products. The price for the box is $19.99 a month.  

You do not get to pick any of the products you get, it's a surprise each month. But they say each box contains 10-15 items and each box is worth at least $30. I like trying boxes like this because they usually contain products that I've never tried or haven't seen before. 

What was in the box?

Karma Probiotics water.
Goya Cookies.
Zaffi Taffy candies 5 pieces.
Goya Green Salsa.
Cello Whisps.
Rufus Teague bbq sauce.
Post Grape Nuts Crunch cereal.
Deep River Snacks potato chips.
Popcorn, Indiana Kettlecorn 2 bags.
Explore Cuisine Chickpea pasta.

We've tried everything except the chickpea pasta so far. I've received those Cello whisps before and didn't like them and still don't but Ken does. It's funny that usually happens that if one of us doesn't like something the other does.

The popcorn and potato chips were good. We both liked them. Grape Nuts has always been one of my favorite cereals and this was another good one from that brand. I hadn't heard of it before now but I sure like it. That bbq sauce is really good. I received a sample of it a while back and liked it so I was happy to get a bottle of it this time. The water tasted like water and the salsa was great on the taco salad I made a few days ago. The candies were a little strange but just ok for me. So another good box this month. I was pretty happy to get to try a few new things and get a couple of things that I already liked. The cookies were my favorite thing this month, they are so good.

If you don't live in the US, they have a Great Britain Website.

If this box looks like something you'd like, you can use code MARYK-ACB and get your first box half off. That's a big box of food for only $10! and you can cancel anytime. So if you're interested, go to the DegustaBox site and sign up and don't forget to use my code to get your first box for just $10.

Have you tried any of these products?

Wednesday, May 16, 2018

Favorite Picture of the Week

Falcor likes to have a blanket on his bed. He usually climbs underneath it and has just his nose sticking out but on this day he climbed half way out with the blanket still mostly around him and laid down on the floor and went back to sleep. Goofy dog.

Tuesday, May 15, 2018

Review: The Dragon's Dilemma by Jessie Donovan

Book Description

In order to pay for her father's life-saving cancer treatment, Holly Anderson offers herself up as a sacrifice and sells the vial of dragon's blood. In return, she will try to bear a Scottish dragon-shifter a child. While the dragonman assigned to her is kind, Holly can't stop looking at his twin brother. It's going to take everything she has to sleep with her assigned dragonman. If she breaks the sacrifice contract and follows her heart, she'll go to jail and not be able to take care of her father.

Even though he's not ready to settle down, Fraser MacKenzie supports his twin brother's choice to take a female sacrifice to help repopulate the clan. Yet as Fraser gets to know the lass, his dragon starts demanding something he can't have - his brother's sacrifice.

Holly and Fraser fight the pull between them, but one stolen kiss will change everything. Will they risk breaking the law and betraying Fraser's twin? Or, will they find a way out of the sacrifice contract and live their own happily ever after?

My Review

I grabbed this book when one of my blogger friends posted that it was free at the time. I do love these freebies. 

Holly Anderson is in a tough place because she wants to take care of her father who has cancer but in order to do that she has to give a lot of herself. She's made a contract with a dragon shifter and has agreed to have a child with the dragon shifter. In exchange they gave her a vial of dragon blood that she sold so she could pay for experimental cancer treatments for her father. Since the dragon shifters don't have a lot of population, they have turned to human sacrifices as they call them, to repopulate their kind. 

Once these sacrifice contracts are signed, there's no backing out. She could go to jail if she tried. So when Fraser realizes that she is more than just his brother's sacrifice, he keeps quiet because he wants his brother to be happy but his dragon isn't having it. Things really get interesting after that.

I really liked seeing how Fraser and Holly get to know one another. Things heat up between these two really fast because of the mating frenzy and the fact that his dragon doesn't have a lot of patience for Fraser and Holly to get to know one another over time. No, the dragon inside of Fraser wants things to happen right now and they do but Holly is no push over and she puts his dragon in his place real fast. It was fun, sexy and romantic.

My only real problem with this book was that we didn't get enough back story about the human sacrifice or the dragon hunters. I didn't realize for the entire first half of the book that the dragon shifters had to worry about some humans hurting them. There's also the fact that there are rogue shifters that left this clan of dragon shifters and they are not nice at all. They follow the old ways and don't want humans mating with dragons so they are not happy that their ex clan has a new sacrifice and they try to stop it from working out. 

There was a lot going on in this book and while a little more back story would have been nice, it was a really great read the way it was. 

I give this book 4 out of 5 stars. 

Monday, May 14, 2018

Happy Raturday!

*Picture courtesy of*

*Picture courtesy of*

*Picture courtesy of*

*Picture courtesy of*

Sunday, May 13, 2018

Apartment Life #27

This is a new weekly blog post that I'm calling Apartment Hell  Life. I've mentioned a few times some of the crazy things that go on in and around my apartment complex in the past 20 years that we've lived here and people keep telling me I should write a book. But instead of a book, I've decided to share the crazy things that have happened in and around my apartment complex in the last 20 years here in a weekly blog post.

This week I thought I'd expand on the problem I've been having with a lot of the kids in my courtyard. First off, the parents don't watch them. The parents like to make them go outside and leave them unsupervised. I've asked repeatedly if they would keep their kids away from my door and they always say sorry and call the kids away, which works for about 5 minutes. There were three different apartments that have kids who play outside unsupervised and like to stand directly in front of my door and bark or scream at my dog but one family moved out about a week ago. The only thing I can do is document it and shut my door. So here are some pictures of the little darlings who like to stand in front of my door and bark or yell at my dog. 

My daughter and grandson was over for a visit and they saw this kid standing in front of my door taunting Falcor. I even told the kid to get away from my door but as you can see, he just stood there.

This kid was riding one of those motorized cars but every time she'd ride by my door, she would stop and scream at Falcor trying to get him to start barking. The kid in the background was throwing rocks at my screen door and was scooping up some more in this picture. I said something to his mother and she said sorry and told him not to do it again but of course he did. 

This kid comes by my door all the time when I have it open and he barks at Falcor trying to get him to bark which he is doing at this time in the picture. I told him to get away from my door but he just looks at me and says no. 

This is another little darling who was standing to the side of my door so I couldn't see her from my couch and was taunting my dog. They do it pretty much any time I have my door open on nice days and even when I say something to their parents they do nothing.

Again she was riding by, stopping to taunt Falcor so I just let him bark for a while and the parents finally yelled at the kids to get away from my door. The barking dog seems to bother some of these parents more than people coming to tell them that their kids are standing in front of peoples doors bothering them. So I let Falcor bark for a while sometimes.

I don't care that the kids are outside playing. But when they continually stand directly in front of my door and bark at my dog or yell at him trying to get him to react, it's really infuriating when their parents do nothing when they're told about it. Watch your damn kids. Ken and I along with 3 other apartments went to the manager's office and complained about the parents not watching their kids. We found out all 3 apartments were 3 months behind in their rent and 2 were getting evicted. So far one family has moved out. 

And 2 nights ago we had a domestic disturbance at 10pm where the couple was actually fist fighting. They beat each other up and the cops came and the woman was taken to jail. No pictures though because I was already in my pajamas and getting ready for bed.

So that's it for this week's Apartment Hell  Life! Be sure to come back next week for more.

Saturday, May 12, 2018

Favorite Video of the Week

This week I thought I would show you something else that we have here in Las Vegas. This time it's something strange. lol It's called Seven Magic Mountains Art. It's open to the public and my brother told me that on the way in or out of Vegas you can see these huge painted rocks off to the side out in the desert. The boulders stand more than 30 feet high and opened in 2016 to the public. In reality it's just a bunch of painted rocks stacked on top of one another and my city paid the guy who came up with this idea... 3.5 million dollars, which I think is way over priced for a bunch of painted rocks.

Friday, May 11, 2018

Freebie Friday!

Welcome to another edition of Freebie Friday, where I tell you what free samples and full sized products I received in the mail and how you can get them too. Someone asked me why I do a "Freebie Friday" each week, so I'll tell you.

A while back I listed all the free samples and wins that I had received that previous year and so many people didn't believe that I could have gotten so many free things. So I decided to prove it by taking a picture every week and sharing the sites that I found the links to the freebies at. So now you too can get great free samples coming to your mailbox each week.

  You can find links to great samples at Hey It's Free and Freebie Shark.

This week I received:

A box of Charco Caps Anti-gas pills from The Upside.
A solar charger from Marlboro.

I gave the solar charger to Ken since he has a Kindle, tablet and cell phone that he sometimes takes with him when he goes out. Marlboro has great freebie promotions on their site a few times a year where they give away things. I've gotten a flask, refillable lighter, flashlight, bottle opener and now the charger.

Did you receive any freebies this week?

Thursday, May 10, 2018

Review: Emerge: The Awakening: (Immortals of Indriell Book 1) by Melissa A. Craven

Book Description

"In a world where those around me have always recoiled from my touch, I am an outcast. In a world where I am one of the two most powerful immortals ever born, I am both revered and feared. Caught in the middle of two worlds, my only ally is my equal." Allie Carmichael

She’s an orphan, an outcast, and … Immortal. 

Allie Carmichael has never known true friendship. Even those closest to her can't stand to be near her. When she learns her family will be moving from Australia to the United States, Allie prepares for life as a loner on the other side of the world… 

Except the warm welcome from a new group of friends changes everything. Especially the dark and mysterious Aidan McBrien, the only guy who’s ever dared to get to know her. But her new life shatters when a painful transformation awakens the power within her and Allie discovers what it means to be Immortal. 

Her power marks her as Aidan's equal and together their friendship could mend the hurt of their lonely pasts … or it could tear them apart. 

Allie must deal with the loss of her normal life amidst brutal training, her feelings for Aidan, and an ominous prophecy that threatens his future.

My Review

At the very beginning of the book Allie has to say goodbye to Gavin, her only friend who makes her feel somewhat normal. But her parents move a lot and they decided to move again and this time to the US. 

Right before her first day at the new school Allie runs into Aidan, quite literally. They hit it off right away which was different and exciting for Allie. She also finds herself attracted to the guy she just met which is different and he doesn't seem affected when their hands meet. Since most people seem to be affected by her touch she finds this strange as well. 

Aidan has the same problem touching people as Allie does. Allie realizes this when she see's his mother flinch when he puts his arm around her. She thinks it's strange but doesn't say anything about it. Things are going so well but I just knew things were gonna change soon and I was right. When Allie turns 16 years old, she finds out just how different she and her new friends are. She is a part of a race of people that have a lot of power, which is why some people flinched when they touched her...they could unconsciously sense the power within her. 

But not only is she part of a powerful race of people but she and her friends are also in danger, which makes so much sense to her now. Her parents constantly moving at a moments notice, the secrecy and her dad's gun collection were all about keeping her safe. 

I really liked how the elders were training her and the others who were new to this world. There are several other characters that are the same age or around the same age as Allie and they are all learning how to deal with their powers.

While this book is a teenage coming of age story, or coming into power story and there's a budding romance, it's done tactfully for their age. The story itself was action-filled, funny and emotional. Even though it wasn't my usual type of read, I found myself unable to stop reading once I started. The story starts unfolding right away and with the quick twists and turns this story took, I was on the edge of my seat to see what would happen next. 

I was loving this story, absolutely loving it and then it just a cliffhanger! Nothing irritates me more than a cliffhanger. I was so mad that I had wasted my time on a book that ended in a huge cliffhanger. I'm just glad that this was a freebie when I found it because I would be really irritated if I had paid for this. The cliffhanger ruined it for me so I won't be reading anymore of this series. I would totally have given this a higher rating if it had an actual ending to the story but the story just kinda stops with nothing at all resolved. If this had been a continuation story where the main story is concluded and the back story continues through the series, I could have dealt with that but this story just stops and nothing was resolved. There was no real ending and none of the storyline was resolved. The book is long, more than long enough for a real ending...over 400 printed pages (I read the kindle version) so I expected some sort of conclusion and got none. 

I give this book 2 out of 5 stars. 

Wednesday, May 09, 2018

Favorite Picture of the Week

*Click on picture to enlarge*

I had planned to just show the cover of this magazine that Ken found at one of the Marijuana Dispensaries he went to last week because I thought it was fun that they added a coloring page to it and a few on the inside.

*Click on picture to enlarge*

Most of you know that here in Las Vegas, marijuana is now legal to buy and use for recreational use as long as you are 21 years of age and have a legal ID. So I thought, instead of just showing this magazine, how about an informational post about a few of the things I know about the dispensaries and what you can now buy. 

I do not now, or have I ever smoked marijuana nor do I ever plan to but Ken does on occasion and that's how I got the products for these pictures that I took. I'm not an advocate for marijuana use but I don't care what someone does in their own home. 

If you live in a place that doesn't have legalized marijuana then I thought that it might be interesting to read your reactions to what someone might buy where it is legal. There are a lot of products available at the dispensaries including the pre-rolls, buds and edibles but I'll only be talking about the pre-rolls since that's what I was able to take pictures of.

*Click on picture to enlarge*

This is what Ken and his friends usually buy, it's called a pre-roll. They are $12 for each pre-roll and he usually buys one or two a month. They come pre-rolled and looks like a mini cigar and I've been told you can smoke it like that or you can empty this out and smoke it in a glass marijuana pipe. Most people who I've seen buy these dump them out and use the pipes. 

A pipe like this or others. 

*Click on picture to enlarge*

The marijuana you buy at the dispensary is given to you in a sealed bag so you can legally transport it home. So even if you get pulled over by the cops for some reason, as long as you haven't torn the package open, it's legal to have in your car. On the back of the envelope it comes in, are a bunch of facts about the marijuana you just bought including, the strain, weight, THC level, date it was harvested, what laboratory tested it, and where you bought it. 

Ken just found out that Veterans get a 15% discount so the last time he went in he took his DD214 and they put it in his file, so from now on that discount automatically gets applied if he buys something.  

When you go to the dispensary it's just a shop like any other business. When you go in, you check in with the security guard and then wait in line to tell them what you want to buy. They then take the product over to the cashier where you pay for it. They only take cash, no debit, checks or credit cards. At least the ones here. Then they place your products in the bag, seal it and give it to you. If you have a medical marijuana card, you get to go to the front of all the lines. Medical marijuana patients get priority in most of the dispensaries. 

Just like alcohol it is still illegal to drive while under the influence. So if you get pulled over and tested for marijuana and have more in your system than is legally allowed, you can get a DUI ticket. I do not know right now what the legal limit for marijuana is. 

What do you think about some states legalizing marijuana? 

Tuesday, May 08, 2018

Review: A Collection of Dead Men Stories by Jacqui Jacoby

Book Description

Travis Ricci, Ian Stuart, Jason Sullivan, Quinn Nelson and Evan Harris—before the Dead Men debuted in Dead Men Play the Game, these five guys had lives which took them across the Pacific Northwest, making their own history which could be no one's, but their own.

          They faced funny, they faced sadness, and they made sure each one of them was standing when the sun finally rose each day.

My Review

These short stories focus on five characters that have appeared in two other books by Jacqui Jacoby, "Dead Men Play the Game" and "Dead Men Seal the Deal". I've read both of those books so I already felt like I knew them and some of their story. While this book can totally be read a standalone book, I recommend reading the other two books first. 

These men are trying to deal with the fact that they are immortal now and in fact vampires. You all know from my other reviews that I love vampires, they are my favorite type of reads so this was a real treat for me. 

It was fun to see these guys again and read more about their lives. They get along for the most part and I like how they interact with one another and how they rely on each other. I really like this crazy crew of vampires and how they help each other and how we see some humorous moments in some of these stories about them. 

When one of them is in trouble or having a hard time the others help him or try to find out what the problem is and fix it. Once they are turned into vampires they don't go back home again to see their families or loved ones but at times years later when a family member or loved one dies they might go and pay their respect and say good bye for the last time. If anyone recognizes them they just use their vampire mind tricks to erase the contact and recognition from their minds. 

These guys have a code of conduct and if they come across someone who does something bad, they might make them pay in some way. I've read other books from this author that I liked a bit more than this book because at times I felt a bit bored reading this, it just didn't grab my attention as much as others have.

This collection is well worth the read. 

I give this book 3 out of 5 stars. 

Disclaimer: I received this book free for review purposes but all thoughts are my own. 

Monday, May 07, 2018

Happy Raturday!

*Picture courtesy of Jin Wicked*

*Picture courtesy of Jin Wicked*

*Picture courtesy of Jin Wicked*