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ISO of a SUPER-AWESOME-MADE-OF-WIN toaster

Our toaster is dying a slow death - one of the heating elements isn't working anymore, so our toast is sadly not really toasted when it pops up. I think that this is the longest-lasting toaster we've ever had, but it still has only lasted two years. Considering that all four of us using the damned thing multiple times per day, it gets a lot of use

I really want a new toaster, one that will last longer than a couple of years. I want it to be awesome and shiny and make really good toast AND bagels and, when we're feeling wild, maybe even an English muffin. I've been scouring Amazon the past couple of days looking for such a thing, but all of the ratings on the toasters are 3 1/2 stars or less, even for the higher-priced ones.

For the love of breakfast, if you've got one such toaster in your possession, please share the brand/model with me so we can eat perfectly toasted bread whenever we desire.

Help, artists?

I'm looking for some good art instruction books for my students - something that is good for independent work and has projects with clear, easy to follow directions. We're already using a section of Drawing on the Right Side of the Brain, which is a bit advanced for most of my kids. I found a few good projects in Drawing for the absolute beginner, but I'm specifically in need of resources that cover sketching basics & Color theory.

Any suggestions?

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We're on the tail end of the HPEF retreat right now, having enjoyed an extremely productive weekend. The Board had a wonderful opportunity to learn more about what's going on behind-the-scenes at the Wizarding World of Harry Potter, had a chance to sample some wonderful food, and got to spot the towers of Hogwarts through some late morning fog and an afternoon downpour. Fortunately it dried up enough last night for the pre-Infinitus meetup at the Hard Rock cafe, and we got to share a couple of pieces of news with the folks who joined us for dinner and drinks:

*For those procrastinators out there, the deadline for the CFP has been extended through the end of the month. It's not too late to submit a proposal!

*The Wizarding World park event will take place on Friday, July 16 and will run after hours. More information will become available soon, so keep checking back for more information.

*Make sure that you book your rooms at one of the host hotels ASAP! The conference space is at the Royal Pacific Resort, and the room block is nearly full. Walking distance away are the Portofino Bay Resort and the Hard Rock Hotel, and there are still rooms available.

The weather today was much nicer, although rather chilly for my tastes. A bit ironic that after a week of rainy and cold weather back home, they're getting bright sun and nearly 80 degrees while Orlando is having almost-freezing lows. Brrr!

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Yanked from bluejeanbaby01

Reply to this post, and I'll tell you one reason why I like you.
Then repost this and spread the love. <-- Only if you want to.

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Oh wise Flist!

So, this week I'm prepping for our vacation over Thanksgiving break. The highlight of my vacation will be me sitting my happy ass on a warm beach for hours at a time. Therefore, I need books.

Not just any books. Cracktastic, girly, froofy books. My current stack of books-to-be-read is heavy on the history, and I don't want any part of that for our trip.

Please, help a girl out! What's your favorite beach read?

2009 Booklist

Wow, I haven't updated my reading list in over a month. I've been reading like crazy too, so I have a lot to add.

Books readCollapse )
55. Kushiel's Dart by Jacqueline Carey (reread)
56. Kushiel's Chosen by Jacqueline Carey (reread)
57. Kushiel's Avatar by Jacqueline Carey (reread)
58. Kushiel's Scion by Jacqueline Carey (reread)
59. Kushiel's Justice by Jacqueline Carey (reread)
60. Kushiel's Mercy by Jacqueline Carey (reread)
61. Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins
62. Time Traveler's Wife by Audrey Niffenegger
63. Plainsong by Kent Haruf
64. Eventide by Kent Haruf
65. 1776 by David McCullough

ETA: In non-reading news, I bashed two of my toes on someone else's knee while sparring last night - the whole class heard the crunching sound. The tip of my ring toe is completely purple from the bruising and the girls both say it looks swollen. I'm thinking it's probably broken, ugh. I taped it to the other one today to stabilize it, and it feels a bit better.

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Three quick things

1. No NaBloPoMo for me this year. Life is keeping me busy enough as is. The best thing about this year's crazy schedule is that I'm getting in lots of reading. Sitting in various waiting rooms while the girls' do their activities has its advantages.

2. Vacation coming up in just a few weeks. Flight to Orlando, 1 night at Animal Kingdom Villas, a 3-night Disney Cruise, then 2 nights at Saratoga Springs. No parks. Got a deal on a rental car, bought tickets to La Nouba for the girls and myself, and I'm really looking forward to sitting on a beach or at the resort pool.

3. For some reason, I thought the new Avatar movie was the cartoon version, the Last Airbender I thought? I didn't realize it was different, and the commercials I've seen this week make me really want to go see it. SoCal folks, want to go? :D

Azkatraz in the news!

Waaaay back in July, I was interviewed while at Azkatraz. Aziza managed to track down the clip that was aired in San Francisco just today!

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Books Read 2009

Books Read 2009Collapse )
50. My Sister's Keeper by Jodi Picoult
51. The Help by Kathryn Stockett
52. The Wednesday Sisters by Meg Waite Clayton
53. Echo of the Bones by Diana Galbadon
54. Vanishing Point by Mary Sharratt

In Progress:
1. A Distant Mirror by Barbara Tuchman (got left at work for the summer, whoops)
2. Don Quixote by Miguel de Cervantes
3. Push Not the River by James Conroyd Martin
4. 1776 by David McCullough

On Deck:
The Last Queen by C. W. Gortener
Katherine by Anya Seton

Lots of reading the past couple of weeks, thanks to the hours and hours I've sat while M prepares for her Cho Dan test. Two more weeks left! I can't find either of my on deck books right now, thanks to our wonderfully chaotic house. I think I might make a trip to the library tomorrow to pick up some other fun reads, as I'm settling back into doing some rereading for ease of effort.

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2009 Booklist revisited

Completed BooksCollapse )
45. The Lady Elizabeth by Alison Weir
46. Sarah's Daughter by Ruth Bass
47. Made in the U.S.A. by Billie Letts
48. A Thread of Grace by Mary Doria Russell
49. Mind Over Ship by David Marusek
50. My Sister's Keeper by Jodi Picoult

In Progress:
1. A Distant Mirror by Barbara Tuchman (got left at work for the summer, whoops)
2. Don Quixote by Miguel de Cervantes
3. Vanishing Point by Mary Sharratt

Planned summer reading:
The Last Queen by C. W. Gortener
Push Not the River by James Conroyd Martin
Katherine by Anya Seton

Work starts up again next Thursday and I've got three more books to go from my summer reading list. I don't think I'm going to make it, but I should be able to at least get through one more.

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bekkio
Founding member of the Rotfang Conspiracy

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