I haven’t done one of these in a while.
What I’m Reading
I’m enjoying The Girl who Circumnavigated Fairyland in a Ship of her own Making, by Catherynne Valente. Although it’s intended for a younger reader, I think I’ve been clear about my love of YA fiction. Especially fiction that shows girls having adventures. I’m still only about 1/3 of the way into the book, but I know this will become a book I recommend quite often. It has everything you’d expect in a book about a human girl who finds herself carried off to Fairyland by the Green Wind on a flying leopard — intrigue, silliness, adventure, riddles, and lots of wonderful ridiculousness.
I’d heard about this book through Eric. He, in turn, heard about it from chatter in the Internet about the author. Originally, she’d self-published the story in installments, and then later was picked up by a publisher to have books printed. I’m hoping to give my copy away to either my neighbor-helper, Rayna, or maybe Eric’s niece, Skylar. Or maybe I’ll keep buying copies and giving them away to everyone!
What I’m Listening To
OK, so this is always the hardest. I’m not really good at listening to new music, so it’s not likely that I have something really new to add. When I do listen to music, I generally put on Spotify or Pandora, and pick a playlist that matches my mood or activity level. The Pandora playlists in current rotation are those based on Weezer, XTC, or Florence and the Machine. I like to use Pandora when I’m busy and don’t have time to pay attention to what song is coming up next. And since I can play it through the TiVo, this is the go-to music source for our parties. It’ll just run for hours without a problem. And since the playlists are automatically generated based on the “seed” artists, it’s a good way to learn about similar artists.
I use Spotify when I’m working on the computer or in my sewing room. I can play it out of my laptop with my headphones and keep an eye on what’s coming up next. It’s great because I can create my own playlists from their extensive library. For my most recent birthday party, I made an enormous playlist of all my “favorites.” I listen to that the most. It makes me happy.
But sometimes I use Spotify to see what friends are listening to, and to explore other songs by artists I’m not familiar with. I have a whole playlist of Scandinavian pop music.
I’m not currently paying for either of these services, because the free option works fine for me. But I have paid for Pandora before and would again. And if I listened to music from my phone or iPad more often, I’d probably pay for the premium Spotify too.
What I’m Watching
This is probably the meatiest thing to write about. I’ve been watching lots and lots of television series on the TiVo, Netflix, and Amazon. Since much of my media consumption has been as fodder for my Self-Rescuing Princess Society blog, most of what I’ve been watching has a distinctly female theme. I worked my way through two series about teenaged girls — Life Unexpected, which started out intriguing, but turned into super-drama-fest, and Switched at Birth, which I expected to be super drama-y, but turned out to be pretty good. I fully intend to write up a real review of both over on SRPS.
I saw Brave, and loved it. I hope to get to see it again in the next couple of weeks, so I can write up a more in-depth review over on SRPS. I also watched and really liked Phoebe in Wonderland.
Currently, I’m working my way through The United States of Tara and Nurse Jackie. I can tell both are clearly awesome, even though I’m only a couple of episodes in.
What I’m Playing
I haven’t been playing games for a long while, but I’m working on fixing that. I’ve been poking around in Journey, and it’s really cool. I like how relaxing it is. And you can play along with other people, which is pretty neat.
We’ve had two gaming parties recently — our annual Beer n Brats party, and a more casual game night last night. The biggest hit at both was Cards Against Humanity. It’s like Apples to Apples, except it’s for horrible people. So so wrong. So so fun.
We also played around with Super Dungeon Explore. Kyle was nice enough to glue together the minis so we could play. The first round was a bit fast and not quite right. As it turns out, we weren’t really understanding the rules. The second round was at the party. We started late, and it took longer than we thought, so we had to stop before either side had won. But it’s certainly one we’ll play again.