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Friday, October 24, 2014

Torn

photo credit: thousandshipz via photopin cc

I keep wondering why there are people who never learn from history. A book genre people looked down upon ended up becoming increasingly popular several times throughout the past couple of centuries. These days we have access to much more information, but it doesn't prevent people from being ignorant and from making the same mistakes over and over again. Still genres are being labeled as inferior. The world population keeps increasing and with that the numbers of readers. There are so many good books, it's hard to choose sometimes. I think it's great that the choice is plentiful as it means there's something for everyone. There are quite a few people who don't agree with me about that though.
I'm a firm believer of letting people enjoy the things they love as long as they aren't against the law. When it comes to books that means we're allowed to read almost anything. There are people who think things should be different. They try to make others ashamed of what they read. When I read that someone hid the cover of her book behind a newspaper when she traveled by public transport, because she felt embarrassed about the chick lit book she was reading, I felt sad. Then not long afterwards I read once more about schools and teachers forbidding their pupils to read a certain type of book. I read the books in question and they were perfectly innocent and a lot of fun. It's astonishing, but that is exactly what seems to be the problem. Why is it it so bad to enjoy the books you're reading? Shouldn't we teach children that reading is fun? Is it good to label certain genres as unfit and inferior? Who decides that? And why are people accepting these opinions? I think it's wrong to associate reading with guilt as a child ends up feeling torn inside. Who wants to keep reading when they are constantly ridiculed and punished for the books of their choice? If it happens often and long enough they start to resent books instead and the wonderful world of stories will be lost on them forever.
When I was a child I got bored pretty easily and when that happened I always grabbed a book to read. I took what was available and had the chance to read a lot of great stories because of it. When in high school my teachers gave me compulsory reading material that was so dull I almost fell asleep I kept on reading regardless, but I knew others gave up and maybe I should have done that as well. When I look back at it I'm wondering why they wanted me and the other children in my class to read something so complex and difficult we clearly weren't ready for? Why didn't they choose something that we would love? What is wrong with something that's nice to read? I still don't understand it.
 It took me years to find back the joy in reading. When it happened I was a student, I studied Literature, but I didn't want to limit myself to what my teachers offered. I once more picked up everything I could get my hands on because I was curious. I didn't want to limit myself to a certain genre, I read something because I thought it would give me the precious gift of a good story. I wanted to know why certain books became a bestsellers. I kept asking myself the same question, what made these books such a success? Every time my answer was the same, people liked to read these books, they enjoyed them. Why are there people who keep looking down at a lot of these books then, as clearly those authors have done something right instead of wrong? Is it so bad to read for fun? I don't think it is, but I know there are people who don't or won't agree with me.
I've learned from every story I read. There's always knowledge to be gained. Reading something is so much better than reading nothing. I would encourage everyone to read. I don't want to be laughed at because I like comic books, romance novels, fantasy or chick lit. I've read some of the most fabulous books written by authors of these genres. I would never make fun of someone else because of what they read. I usually want to find out what's so fascinating, because I want to find out for myself instead. I wish more people would think that way. For me reading and happiness go hand in hand. My dream is that one day everyone will see it like that. 

Lara Patrizia Vogt is Etsy Seller of the Week! & Giveaway


Lara Patrizia Vogt is my Etsy Seller of the Week! I discovered a pair of her gorgeous earrings and I instantly fell in love. Her jewelry is colorful, original and really pretty!


Lara has given me a fabulous interview so you can learn more about her.


1) Could you tell a little bit about yourself?

My name is Lara and I work as a teacher for textile/handicraft arts, German and history in wonderful Basle, Switzerland. Selling on Etsy is my hobby, I opened my shop this year. I have been a buyer for over 8 years and I always wanted to open my own little shop: And here it is. :-)


 2) What inspires you?

Colors and large pieces of jewelry have fascinated me ever since. One day my heavenly friends asked me to create them by myself. I greatly enjoy to combine colors, to make them flow into each other. I love to feel them, smell them, honor them. For me, it feels like embracing a rainbow.


 3) What are your materials of choice?

I use resin and polymer clay for the frames, pearls, rhinestones, self-printed images, pigments and much time and patience.


 Lara accepts custom orders, she loves them:

You can choose the color of the frame, the image and the pearls or rhinestones and between pierced (stud) earrings, clip-ons or hanging earrings. The earrings are very lightweight and thus comfortable to wear. I also create necklaces and smaller earrings.


For those who love kawaii, Lara has a huge selection of sweets jewelry. It's really cute and wonderful. I can't stop looking at these beautiful pieces.


Lara also makes printed wood jewelry. I think it's stunning! Her geisha collection is very nice and she has such sweet butterfly earrings in her shop.


Here you can see Lara selling her jewelry. 


Lara has a great offer for my readers. If you use the code LAVENDER15 you get a discount of 15% on everything in her shop.


Lara will also give away a jewelry item of choice from her shop to two lucky winners. You can enter the giveaway by using the rafflecopter below. I will announce the winner in a tweet or an email and then they have 60 hours to reply. This giveaway is worldwide.

Thursday, October 23, 2014

Lavender Loves Dleesnow! & Giveaway


I love Dleesnow. It's such a wonderful Etsy shop. I can't stop admiring the miniature jewelry and the amazing soap. The service of this shop is amazing. I am a happy customer which is why I'm writing this post. I highly recommend this seller.


 The food is so tiny and pretty and I love all the small details. That makes this jewelry unique. It's also affordable. You can find all kinds of very cute items for a reasonable price. That's a good thing to know so close to the festive season.


If you like kawaii accessories you will love this shop. Everything is exactly right and it looks so cute!


I'm a big fan of color which makes this the perfect store for me. I will definitely put some of these items on my Christmas wish list.


The soap has been made from scratch with natural ingredients. It's almost unbelievable that this is soap as it looks stunning enough to eat. I can't wait to try one.


When I ordered something from this seller there was a very nice gift enclosed to make one of my readers happy. I think that was really generous. Enter via the rafflecopter below to win this wonderful candy necklace!


I will announce the winner via a tweet or an email. If I don't get any response within 60 hours the prize will go to someone else.
 This giveaway is international. All of my giveaways are worldwide, I think everyone deserves an equal chance.

The Best #happymail Ever!


Yesterday I received such great #happymail that I couldn't stop smiling. This photo is of something that is extra special for me. I received some amazing home made gifts from Tanya's daughters Sian and Ffion. These gifts put such a huge smile on my face, I love them! The girls are really clever, they're so handy and creative. All the gifts are really pretty, I can't stop admiring them! I sent them happy mail a few weeks ago and they've made me all of this to thank me. I love, love, love this!
Happy mail is about making someone happy with something nice in the post. Sian and Ffion know exactly how to do that. I think they've done such an amazing job. I want to tell them how much I appreciate it with this:
SIAN & FFION: THANK YOU VERY MUCH, I LOVE IT!

Shugo Chara! by Peach-Pit

WHO DO YOU WANT TO BE? Everybody at Seiyo Elementary thinks that stylish and super cool Amu has it all: But nobody knows the real Amu, a shy girl who wishes she had the courage to truly be herself. Changing Amu's life is going to take more than wishes and dreams-it's going to take a little magic! One morning, Amu finds a surprise in her bed: three strange little eggs. Each egg contains a Guardian Character, an angel-like being who can give her the power to be someone new. With the help of her Guardian Characters, Amu is about to discover that her true self is even more amazing than she ever dreamed. This volume of Shugo Chara! includes special extras after the story!

Amazon

Everybody at school thinks Amu is amazing. They want to be her and they idolize her, because she's so tough. Amu is struggling with her image, because it isn't who she really is. She is a sweet girl who wants to wear cute things. Amu wishes she can be herself. With the help of a bit of magic three eggs are the result. At first Amu has no idea what they are for, but soon she finds out that each egg contains a Guardian Character. These characters are her would be selves. With the help of her three eggs Amu can be who she wants to be. The Guardian Characters are changing Amu's life. Are they only a blessing for Amu and what happens when she learns to use her new abilities? 
Shugo Chara! is the first manga I've ever read. I was instantly hooked and read the story in one go. I loved it. The drawings are beautiful and the story is great. Aren't we all insecure when we go to school, even the most popular people? The idea of the magic and the three eggs instantly appealed to me. I enjoyed reading this volume immensely and am definitely going to read the second part as well. This isn't a stand alone story, it's part of a series. There are several fabulous girls, a handsome prince and some good kicking and screaming. These ingredients together are making a fabulous story. I really like the cover, the pink hair is great. Shugo Chara! has gotten me hooked, I've already purchased several other manga books for my kindle.

Wednesday, October 22, 2014

Don't Tell the Wedding Planner by Aimee Carson

The craziest wedding…
Bespoke wedding planner Callie Labeau has a reputation for embracing the crazy. The weirder the concept, the wilder the party, right? And her love of all things OTT is about to be tested—because the cyber-geek wedding Matt Passmore has asked her to organize for his brother sounds insane.

…the wildest time planning it!
E.R. doctor Matt has come to New Orleans to lock down the plans. And working with the gorgeous Callie is just an added bonus! But with the city engulfed in a heat wave, the chemistry between them is getting more scorching by the day…and proving to be one seriously big distraction!

Amazon

Callie is a successful wedding planner. When Matt wants to arrange the perfect wedding for his brother he knows who he should ask. That's why he's flying all the way to New Orleans to discuss his plans with her. He's asking her to pull off the impossible. She says yes, but there is a condition and that is that he needs to be there to make some of the bigger decisions. Matt is worried about his brother and his protective nature prevents him from doing the things he wants to do in life. Callie has made one single mistake and is still trying to make up for it many years later. Slowly they're becoming more than just the wedding planner and her client. What is it that they're sharing exactly?
Don't Tell the Wedding Planner is a quick and fun read. There's a lot of chemistry between the two main characters. There are several sexy scenes and they were tastefully described. Even though this is supposed to be a light and easy romance there was some depth in this story. Something I hadn't expected at all. It was a very nice surprise. Nothing is simple and the main characters often have to step out of their comfort zone to keep up with the fast pace their lives have changed into, all because of one event. There's quite a bit of wedding talk in this book and it's all original. The weddings are themed and I liked the way they were described. This book is a great choice when you're looking for a nice read to brighten up a cold winter evening.

Getting to Know Me: Crafts


I've always loved doing things with my hands. Drawing, painting, decorating boxes, making decos, FBs and slams, etcetera. I've done so many different things. I love crafts, but sometimes I long to do something more than just making a single project. I'm seriously thinking about doing something for children. I would love to see my ideas come to life. There are only so many hours in a day and I also want to write. I've decided I'm going to combine both of my passions for a while and see where that will get me. It's fun to find out if I will actually be able to make the things I'm dreaming about. 
I'm messy and chaotic. I function best when the table is filled with scraps of paper, all kinds of different materials and tools. There's barely any room left for me to put my project. That's how I've always worked and even though I don't like that part of myself very much it's great for my creativity. I may not be the best artist or crafter in the world, but as long as I'm having fun I think it's going to be all right.

---Suzanne---
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