Thursday, July 23, 2015

One Adventure After Another (Zolfo Springs, FL)

We moved back to the RV park on Peace River in Zolfo Springs yesterday.  The last three weeks flew by!  One day we are setting up in Clermont and then it was time to move again.  What did I do with my time??  We did a little shopping and stocking from Trader Joe's and Whole Foods.  Below are two photos of an inviting walk area next to Trader Joe's store.  
near Trader Joe's in Winter Garden
I wish we had discovered the Winter Garden's area earlier.  It is a very nice quiet haven to visit with new shopping areas and restaurants sprinkled with nice walking areas, fountains, and ponds.  Maybe on our way back north next year, we will be able to explore this area a little more.

Besides shopping and working on quilt projects and spoiling cats, I also did a lot of reading.  My adventures have been coming from books....lots of adventures and a whole lot of great reading.......
Sandstorm by James Rollins
I borrowed this one from an online library because I wasn't so sure about reading a story about a Sigma Force.  I'm not much for reading books about ultra-secretive covert recruiting ex-Special forces or a lot of far-fetched fire fights.  So why would I read such a book.  The title sounded intriguing.  As a matter of fact, quite a few of Rollins' titles sound quite intriguing so I decided to read the first pages of this one on Amazon and I was hooked!

Talk about - Wow!  What a fantastic science thriller! A roller coaster ride of adventures!  Filled with the shades of Indiana Jones and "Arabian Nights" merged with nonstop action-packed investigating along with historical facts, myths, and science starting in London, England and ending in the lost city of Ubar, a.k.a. the Atlantis of the Sands that I could not put it down.

I had to look up the city called Ubar in Arabia.  You can find photos online of the ruins.  I have always been fascinated by the many desert ruins throughout Egypt, Jordan, Saudi Arabia and many others.  I wish I could see all of them, but I will have to be satisfied with the ones we saw in Turkey and the many European ruins and castles.

Turns out that only two of the characters are with the Sigma Force.  There is a mixture of archaeologists, scientists, and anthropologists to help explain the different discoveries as they search for the lost city.  There were two main characters, but the reader ends up following several throughout the book.  It was not hard to keep track of who was who.  The women are strong intelligent female characters.  The men are, of course, adventurous 'manly' men and...yea, they are smart too.  Along with the Sigma Force, there is a mysterious group of desert women and treacherous villains known as 'the Guild'.  All trying to get hold of a natural antimatter out in the middle of Saudi's desert while looking for a lost city during a mega storm makes for one explosive story.  Whew, almost left me breathless.

If you love adventure action type movies like Indiana Jones, The Mummy, and National Treasure (I do!) then you will love reading this book.  I was surprised to find that the shoot-em-up moments did not take over the story or sound too far-fetched.  Okay, maybe some of them were, but I still enjoyed them.  I was captivated from the first chapter and could not stop reading until I got to the end.

...And here I was worried that my borrowed library book would end up due before I was finished.  Not the case!

The Silver WitchThe Silver Witch by Paula Brackston
So far, I have read three of Paula's books.  This one is my favorite by far!  I almost started the book over again just because it ended way too soon.

In a similar outline like Susanna Kearsley's book, there are two main characters.  In the present day -  Tilda, a young widow and a potter that is unknown to herself - a witch.  And from Celtic times in 910 - Seren, a seer, witch, and prophet to her lord Prince Brynach.  They are connected across time by their unusual albino looks, being different from the rest, and their powers.  My favorite character was Tilda's dog - Thistle, of course.  Not only was she very protective, she was also an intuitive, yet funny dog.

Tilda moves into a Welsh cottage that sits on a hill overlooking Llangorse Lake with an ancient man-made island called a Crannog - a popular way to defend and keep communities safe centuries ago.   I fell in love with the Welsh cottage.  The only thing missing was the English cottage garden and a thatched roof.  My dream cottage! Sigh!

Anyway, back to the story.  As in all of Paula's stories there is good versus evil magic.  This time she included more mystery and historical research.  The story moves along quickly and it was another book that I had a hard time putting down at times.

Some of the best parts of the book were not about witches or their power, it was listening to Tilda find her muse for her pottery.  Autumn leaves on an old oak tree near the sparkling lake or finding old Celtic interwoven designs.  Spending days working on designs, sketches, and molding her inspirations into her clay.  Even the description of building an old fashion fire kiln was wonderful.  I actually rewound to listen to her creative inspirations.  Wow, I miss those times when I would immerse myself in quilt designs with fabrics spread out all over the house, and walk out with several tops ready for quilting.  A little harder to do these days with limited space and time.  Don't get me wrong.  I love my traveling lifestyle, but it would be great to stop once in awhile and just spend a whole day quilting with no interruptions...well except to eat...and have tea...and yea, take the cats out for a walk....

Okay, sorry.  For some reason, this book really sets my mind to wandering at times.  As Tilda learns of her powers and the past, an evil power is also building strength.  It is looking to take revenge, but who and why is the question.  The ending is very satisfying and one I will enjoy listening to again.

On The Cutting Board
I made it to JoAnn Fabrics during our last stay in Clermont.  The JoAnns in Winter Garden is the biggest store I have ever been in!  All that fabric!  Oh gosh!  I wasn't sure I wanted to be in there and yet I could not leave because there was so much to see.  In the end, I spent more time and money in there than I had planned about being on cloud 9 when I walked outside.  I did manage to control my urge to buy a truckload of fabric.  Well, actually, I had a very good argument going with myself - there is no room in our motorhome for more fabric. Probably a good thing.  I did stock up on some backings and batting for the next couple of children's quilts.  I also bought some glass beads, threads, and other notions.  They can be squirreled away in some small cubbyhole.
I found this perfect hot pink leopard print to bind the Black Cat in Pink quilt.  Isn't it cute?  I'm not big on animal prints, but this time I heard it calling me....
I haven't decided the binding for the Laurel Burch cat quilt.  The backing will be quite colorful so if I get tired of looking at the front, well, I can turn it over.  Oh, did I mention that I am keeping this one for moi?  I went back and forth on keeping or selling or giving, but my awful quilting made that decision for me.  For some reason, I had a hard time keeping the puckers out of the quilt so this will be my quilt...puckers, goofs and all will keep me warm the next time we are in cold climates.
My Etsy shop is getting low, so I am working on getting some mug rugs done.  
A little sporadic in the making, but they are slowly getting done.  I might add some tea cups to some of the windows.
I decided to try selling some class C motorhomes on Etsy.  I probably will not make these very often since they take more time to make. 
Good grief, most of the day is gone!  I need to get off this computer and do some sewing!
Happy Quilting!

1 comment:

  1. It is always nice to find a book that is surprisingly entertaining.Choices in the used book stores here in Tokyo are rather poor. Good job at surviving a trip to the fabric store. A lot of stuff seems to call out and when space is limited ... you almost need blinders.


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