Thursday, February 9, 2012

Good eats and good reads

This will be slightly in reverse order, but I was so proud of my dinner that I just wanted to share.  John and I have been on a MASSIVE budget since Jocelyn was born and one of the ways we "control" costs is by doing a monthly menu and grocery shop accordingly.  Toward the end of last month my Mother-in-law gave us a bag of jumbo shrimp which is usually not in our budget (not enough leftovers!).  So I decided to try one of my favorite shrimp dishes when I go out to eat: Coconut Shrimp.  I found a recipe for Baked Coconut Shrimp and I really didn't do anything to modify it.  While I was feeding David, John took care of the shrimp and then made the dipping sauce is well.  All I had to do was dredge and cover the shrimp with the coconut.  And John loved it!  Now some might ask why I made such a favorite meal on a random Thursday as opposed to a certain auspicious romantic holiday next week.  Honest answer?  I was afraid it would be an epic fail :)  Which is also why I took no pictures.  I will know better for next time. Good eats had by all, and Jocelyn and John enjoyed the dip.  I'm not so much a fan of curry and red pepper - way too spicy for my tastes.

And as to my good reads...
I finished a couple books in the past week and wanted to share.  Bearing in mind that I work in a middle school, the vast majority of the books I have been reading lately - as in the past 4 years - have been YA fiction.  And I have discovered that YA authors quite often are superior to adult fiction authors.  They have a much more fickle audience and must therefore appeal to a wide variety of readers.  The first book I finished this week was "Book of a Thousand Days", a selection for our Battle of the Books team.  I picked this up and read it in only four days.  It read extremely quickly.  It wrapped up with a nice pretty bow at the end and pretty much was one of the most relaxing books I've read in a long time.  Perhaps a more thorough review to come....
The second book I read was "The Possibilities of Sainthood" which I read for my school's young adult book club.  I started this book about three weeks ago when we got our new topic for the month: religion.  I read the first couple chapters and just couldn't get into it.  And then I talked with our school librarian and found out that book club was meeting today (OOPS!!).  So last night after getting home and heating up leftovers and going to choir practice and getting home and putting two kids in bed and catching up on email and sitting for a minute or so, I figured I should probably finish my book.  I have to say, I was a bit disappointed by this book.  It was supposed to be light and humorous, and I suppose it was, but I got so tired of reading the whiny tone of the main character, Antonia.  I think perhaps because I work in a middle school I don't want to read about the romantic drama of a 15-year-old who doesn't seem to have a clue about anything other than her Blessed saints.  The story was cute, but got old fast.
So one good read and one less-good read.  I have a whole stack of books on my bedside table, so I'm sure I'll find something more.  I'll try to do a more complete review of both books at some point but I'm eager to continue work on my stocking.  Pictures to come!

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