Friday, April 29, 2011

Country Music Half Marathon



Tomorrow is the big day and I am a bit nervous. Last night I watched this preview video of the route and it looks like a lot of hills. I know that I can easily run 8.5 miles {my longest training run was 10 miles about 2 weeks ago}. I also have no shame in walking, I just hope that my training pays off and I can complete the course.

Friday Favorites

Today I am being featured on A Few of My Favorite Things. Be sure to check out Molly's blog and see what my list of Friday Favorites is...

Thursday, April 28, 2011

In the Still of the Night


If you have watched the news in the last 24 hours you probably realize that most of the Eastern United States was hit pretty hard by a series of storms. Alabama, in particular, was hit very hard over the course of an 18-hour period yesterday.

Daniel got up for work as usual and left about 6AM. Our weather radio went off at 6:45 saying "take cover" and Daniel called me to say that TVA employees were taking cover. I groggily grabbed my laptop and herded Sophie into the coat closet with me. For an hour I surfed the internet and listened to ongoing tornado warnings on our weather radio.

At 7:45 I finally got the all clear and came out of hiding. Most of the morning was sunny but right around lunch time we had another warning come up. Daniel was out to lunch with a couple of his co-workers. Instead of heading back to TVA they came to the house and we passed the time playing Rook.

They got the call to go back to work but within an hour Daniel called to tell me to take cover again. I didn't believe him at first because I was in the bonus room upstairs which faces north and the view was sunny. But I went back into the closet anyway.

As soon as I got into the closet, the power went out. Since my laptop was fully charged, I passed the time working on a couple of freelance projects. After this round I came out to find lots of tree limbs down on our property and several trees down in the neighbor's yards. I didn't find out until later that our neighbors had taken it upon themselves to clear a large tree that had fallen and blocked the entrance to our road. Thank goodness for good neighbors.

Since I didn't have electricity, I spent the rest of the day reading a book. Later that afternoon we went back into the closet and I read by flashlight. Sophie was amazingly calm throughout the day.

Daniel finally came home in time for another warning. This time we grabbed camp chairs and made our way to our walkout basement {unfortunately we don't have access to it from the inside of our house}. This warning passed pretty quickly and we decided to try to go to town to grab dinner.

While out we discovered that all of Scottsboro was out of power – we had assumed {incorrectly} that it was just Hollywood that was affected since TVA had still had power at 4:30 PM.

Since we couldn't find anywhere with power, we went home and made ourselves peanut butter sandwiches and sat our porch watching the weather patterns change and listening to our weather radio. When we tired of that, we went upstairs to read before it got dark. We both fell asleep when it became too dark to read. 

We woke up to a pretty intense lightening storm and headed back downstairs and flipped on the radio. We were under another tornado warning, but based on the radio it sounded like the storm was already north of us, heading up Hwy 72 to Stevenson and Bridgeport. Around 8:30 Daniel talked to his sister and we agreed we were in the all clear for the night and decided to go to bed. People must have gone to bed early in the days before electricity because there is NOTHING TO DO!

We both woke up in the middle of the night to an eerily quiet and dark house. Our house is not that far from Hwy 72, so there is always some amount of sound from traffic, even at night. Also it is never this dark. Since we were both wide awake, we talked about what we needed to have in an emergency kit for the future before going back to sleep.

Daniel's alarm clock went off at 5:30 this morning and he started calling around to see if he needed to go to work. After many calls, he found out that a switch yard at Widows Creek {about 20 miles north of us} had been hit by a tornado and most of northern Alabama and parts of Mississippi were without power. Then we learned from our meter reader that 100+ transmission lines were down due to the storms. We heard reports that it would take anywhere from 3 to 9 days to get power back to our area of the state. Since there is no power, Daniel didn't have to go to work. So we went back to bed.

We finally got up around 9 and decided we needed to clean out our fridge before we left town. We threw away 2 bags worth of groceries and loaded as much as we could into a cooler filled with ice. 

Once we had packed the car we headed out of town going north on Hwy 72 {along with the huge exodus of people that had the same idea}. On our drive north we saw many large trees that had been uprooted, but amazingly there appeared to be little damage to buildings. The town of Stevenson had power and the wait at the one gas station looked like it would take well over an hour. The line in the McDonald's drive through wrapped around the building. Thankfully we had a full tank of gas.

We stopped at a Sonic in South Pittsburg for lunch and then at a Starbucks in Manchester so that I could send out some emails regarding a couple of projects. We are staying at my sister's in Hermitage tonight and will probably spend some time with Daniel's family over the weekend as well. We have no idea when we will go back to Hollywood or when Daniel will be back at work again.

Saturday I will run the Country Music Half Marathon as planned. Other than that we will enjoy spending time with family and friends. So many people were affected by these storms. We are thankful that the only thing we really had to deal with was a power outage.

Wednesday, April 27, 2011

We're Having a Baby: How We Told Our Families


Do you know how hard it has been for me to not write anything about being preggo? I actually started keeping a personal journal so that I could look back and reference it and share parts of it on the blog when the time came. When we told our families, my sister confessed that she had started stalking me on the internet to see if I was writing a secondary blog somewhere. Thankfully I was smart enough to keep it offline!!!
 

We decided to wait and tell both of our families the weekend of Easter. It would be the earliest time we could see my parents and we really wanted to do it in person. This also allowed us some time to wrap our heads around the fact that we really were pregnant.
 

Friday we asked Daniel's mom, dad, sister and brother-in-law to meet us for dinner at Cheddars in Smyrna, TN. Unfortunately Daniel and I were about 15 minutes late to the restaurant and the rest of the family was already seated. We sat down and the waitress took our order. When she was finished, Daniel handed her our camera and asked her to take a picture of the family. Before she snapped the picture Daniel said, “Everyone say cheese.” She took the picture and then we asked her to take a second one. This time Daniel said, “Everybody say Cheree’s pregnant.” The expression on Emily’s face was priceless. Our waitress kept snapping photos of the reaction. Soon Emily and Regina were crying. It was a great way to surprise all of them. We were able to spend the rest of the meal sharing all of the details of our pregnancy and answering questions.


After dinner we went to my sister's house in Hermitage. On the way, Daniel called Amy, his sister who lives in Boston, to tell her she was going to be an aunt. It was close to 10pm before we got there, so my parents were the only ones still awake {they had come over from Arkansas for Easter weekend}. We stayed up visiting with them for about an hour.



At one point my dad asked Daniel how his family was doing and Daniel said, “Well Emily and my mom cried.” I shot Daniel a dirty look and proceeded to tell my parents that Daniel’s family had been happy to see us because it had been since Christmas since we had seen them! We hoped that it was enough to keep my parents from guessing our news. We went to bed and Daniel apologized… he was exhausted and not thinking about what he was saying!!! 

 
  
Saturday we got up and visited and played with Izzy. I was debating when to tell my family. I really wanted my brother to be there and he still hadn’t showed up. Mid morning Mark finally showed up. It turned out to be a good surprise for my parents who had no idea that he was going to be in town! We are all full of surprises this weekend!  


We all ended up in Angela and Robert’s bonus room and I made the offhand suggestion to take a family picture. I set up my camera on the self-timing mode and set the function for it to take a series of 10 pictures in a row. We all got into position and I said, “Everybody say Cheree and Daniel are having a baby.” Angela started laughing. My dad grinned ear to ear and my mom just sat there. When the camera finished, my mom said, “Are you serious?” Instead of reacting immediately, she sat perfectly still for the camera smiling because she was so focused on the picture taking! Mark and Angela and Robert admitted that they had guessed. My parents had been clueless. Everyone was very happy for us. 


Best reactions were definitely from Daniel's sister and my sister.

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Passing the Torch


About 10 years ago Daniel bought his first motorcycle. It was a Ninja 250 sport bike and he was thrilled to have it.  

We were dating at the time and we enjoyed many rides together. Not long after he purchased it, we went to Gatlinburg with his family. We took the opportunity to ride up to Newfound Gap. The views were beautiful.  


Shortly after we were married, Daniel went out for an afternoon ride {alone} from Cookeville to the Maryville area to ride Tail of the Dragon {which happened to be out of cell phone range}. It ended up storming and I was very worried when six hours later he still had not made it home. 

I assumed that the worst had happened and I had absolutely no idea where to begin looking for him. He finally arrived home and informed me that he had had to take cover at a gas station b/c the weather was so bad. After he stopped riding, he learned he that had ridden through a tornado warning and near an actual tornado.

While he was still an undergrad at Tennessee Tech, we would often ride up to the school to play racquetball. One game ended when Daniel twisted his ankle. Thankfully it was his right ankle and not the left {you need your left foot to shift gears} so he was able to ride the bike home {with me on the back}. Unfortunately his ankle prevented him from driving either of our cars for a week as it is hurt to push the gas pedal. So instead, he rode his motorcycle around campus with crutches sticking out of his backpack.


After this mishap Daniel decided that I should probably get my motorcycle license. So I took a weekend MSF riding course and enjoyed learning how to ride. Once I had my license Daniel let me take his bike out with him as a passenger. He learned that it is a lot harder to be the passenger than the driver because you have no control.


When we moved to Charlotte, NC I gave up riding because it made me nervous to be on roads in a big city. The motorcycle came in handy on several occasions when one of our old cars was getting repaired. We actually spent two years as a one-car family and the motorcycle {along with his bicycle} became the vehicle that Daniel used on a regular basis. As we got older {and heavier} it became harder to ride the little 250 together. Daniel had to get stiffer shocks so that we could keep riding together. When there was a gas crisis in Charlotte a few years ago, we parked both of our cars for two weeks and relied on the motorcycle and our bicycles as our only modes of transportation.

This is  painting I did in college. Daniel made the frame from a motorcycle tire.

For 10 years the Ninja was good to us, but Daniel recently decided to sell it because he wasn’t enjoying it like he used to. A couple of weeks ago he wrote an ad and put the bike on Craigslist. Just before Easter weekend, a buyer in Murfreesboro, TN contacted him. It turned out to be a 15-year-old kid whose parent's were going to let him get his motorcycle license and a motorcycle so that he could ride to and from school. He was extremely excited. 


Daniel spent Friday afternoon going over every possible detail about the bike with the kid. It was a sad day for Daniel. He was ready to move on and someday would like to buy a bigger and faster bike, with better brakes and suspension, but it was still hard for him to say goodbye to something that had been with him for 10 years.

Menu Recap

Last week's meals were as follows:


Monday Dinner: Tomato Florentine Soup with fresh Bread {Recipe adapted from Good Life Eats}. This was a great recipe. Unfortunately my camera setting was messed up so some of this week's pics are kind of crappy. Daniel gave it 4.42/5 stars.
 
 
For dessert I made these Outrageous Oreo Chocolate Brownies {Recipe adapted from Erin's Food Files}. Daniel gave it 4.7/5 stars. I was a little disappointed that the Oreo flavor wasn't stronger.


Tuesday Dinner: Stuffed Bell Peppers {Recipe courtesy of my friend Laura}. Daniel gave this 4.5/5 stars which is high considering it was a vegetarian dish.
 
Wednesday Dinner: Daniel and I went running {getting in some last minute training for my upcoming half marathon}. Afterward we went to our favorite Mexican restaurant, Buena Vistas, and split the Mex Tex Fajitas.
 
 
Thursday Dinner: Blackened Chicken with Rice and Sauteed Zucchini {Recipe courtesy of my mom}. This is a family favorite and one of the first meals I made for Daniel when we were dating. Daniel gave it 4.75/5 stars. 
 
Friday Dinner: We met up with Daniel's family at Cheddars in Smyrna, TN. I had the Smokehouse Burger and Daniel had Salmon. It was a great visit with family.
 
Saturday Lunch: We spent the rest of Easter weekend at my sister's place in Hermitage, TN. My parents came up from Arkansas and my brother dropped by as well. My brother-in-law made us Grilled BBQ Chicken and Corn on the Cob. My sister made a Strawberry and Almond Salad. Scrumptious.


Saturday DinnerSome of my extended family came over to my sister and brother-in-laws for Pizza and Games. I made a Meat Pizza and two Supreme Pizzas. My brother made an Alfredo Pizza. And my aunt provided a Veggie tray.
 
Sunday Lunch: My B-I-L made a Potroast with Carrots and Mashed Potatoes and Gravy {my sister is a lucky woman}. 
 
Sunday Dinner: We picked up a pizza from Papa John's after we made it home.

Friday, April 22, 2011

Greeting Cards: Easter

Have a Happy Easter!

*This is the fourth in my series of twelve "I Love You More" cards 
that I have designed and will be posting throughout the year.

© Cheree Moore  

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Thunder

When I was 14 years old, I went on a backpacking trip in Colorado with my church youth group {Wilderness Trek}. Our goal for the week was to summit 14,036' Mt. Sherman. This particular year there was a significant amount of snow on the ground and most of the trip was a difficult slog through deep snow.


I have many memories from this trip including a fake bear attack on the girls tent during the night and hiking in circles because our guides wanted us to have the experience of a long hike even though the snow was too deep to get very far up the mountain.


One night we were camped in a valley {I believe our high camp} and we were awakened by a storm. I remember laying on the ground in my sleeping bag and being terrified because the lightning was so bright it was like day and the thunder was bouncing off the mountains around us and shaking the very ground we were sleeping on. The wind was whipping our tent and the two other girls on the trip and I were all awake and pretty scared. The storm eventually passed and I remember thinking that this was the loudest thunder I had ever experienced.

Left to Right: Josh Pulley, Burt Boyce, Martin McLeod, Brandon McLeod, 
Tabitha Hoofman Pugh, Kristalynne Godwin Gray, Douglas Harp, Cheree Voyles Moore, 
Cameron Holifield, John McLeod, Luke Harrison, Jeremy Richards

Fast forward 16 years and I now live in a valley. When we get storms the thunder bounces off the mountains and shakes our house. It is unreal how loud it gets. I lay in bed and count the seconds between the lightning and the boom of the thunder and it can be a 20 second delay and the thunder still rattles the house. It is very unnerving. The first time it happened I just figured it was a particularly bad storm. Now I know that almost every storm that passes through northeast Alabama has the same effect. At least now I have walls around me for protection and not just a flimsy nylon tent!

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Curtains

My sister's house has a lot of windows. 

Earlier this year my sister, brother and I went on a scavenging trip to see if we could find any good bargains on home decor. We were specifically looking for artwork and curtains. What we discovered was that we couldn't agree on anything because the three of us we have wildly different taste – evident by our different abodes.

Anyways, my sister was becoming frustrated that there were no curtains she liked and everything seemed to cost a lot. While perusing at Target, she stumbled on a fabric shower curtain that she really liked, but she wanted it for her dining room. 

 *What the original curtains looked like.

There were a few of problems with this: 
1) This shower curtain would be too short for her windows.
2) She didn't like the grommets at the top.
and
3) The curtain panel was too wide.

I told her that we could fix the problem by purchasing 4 shower curtains {that happened to be on sale at a ridiculously low price}, then we would cut each one in half to make a total of 8 panels and finally we would add fabric to the top to make the curtains the appropriate length.

Several months later I have finally wrapped up this little project that I volunteered to help with. This weekend we are headed to my sister's for Easter and I will finally show her what her new curtains look like. I hope she likes them.

52 Books: Book 20


On a recent visit home, my dad lent me several books {I had been complaining about how small my local library was}. Having completed the C.S. Lewis trilogy he loaned me, I am now delving into a series of historical fiction. This series by Fiona Buckley begins with To Shield the Queen and introduces us to the heroine: Ursula Blanchard.

Ursula is a lady in waiting to the queen when she finds herself questioning two mysterious deaths. Her desire to know the truth leads her to uncover a plot against the Queen. While a work of fiction, the novel centers on the historical romance between Robert Dudley and Queen Elizabeth I as well as the death of Dudley's wife. 

Ursula reminded me a bit of Nancy Drew and I enjoyed the historical components of the novel, but I have to admit that I have read better historical fiction. This is good light reading if you are looking for a quick read.

Monday, April 18, 2011

My Sciatic Nerve

Are you tired of the running posts yet? Don't worry, only two more weeks and then I will be done with this long-distance running stuff.

On my runs that last longer than 8 miles I am discovering that my sciatic nerve is not my friend. Evidently it gets compressed somewhere around mile 8 and it hounds me for the rest of my run. Not fun. I generally recover within 12 hours of my run.

I have had problems with this nerve before – namely whenever I use an elliptical machine and that nerve gets pinched which results in my feet going numb after 30 minutes of exercise. 

So, what's a girl to do? I went to my yoga teacher for advice {she also happens to teach Phys Ed at a community college and has done so for the last couple of decades}. I described my pain to her and she said that it was likely that my sciatic nerve was getting pinched. She gave me some suggestions for stretching afterward to relieve the pain and also gave me pointers on what I could do during my longer runs including varying my stride, focusing on my posture, relaxing my entire body while running and doing a one mile warm up run then stopping to do some exercises to loosen my hips. 

I have one more long run scheduled before the race. I hope her tips help.

Menu Recap

Last week's meals were as follows:


Monday Dinner: Taco Salad – my mom made this dish often when I was growing up. There is something about cold lettuce and warm meat that makes me happy. Daniel gave it 4.6/5 stars. 


We had these Chocolate Peanut Butter Cookies for dessert {Recipe Adapted from Blue-Eyed Bakers}. They would have been better if I had had the Chocolate Covered Peanut Butter Pretzels from Trader Joes.
 
 
Tuesday Dinner: Pan-seared Steak with Baked Potato and Corn. Simple and yummy. Daniel gave it 4.7/5 stars.

Wednesday Dinner: Frozen CPK Sicilian Pizza.

Thursday Dinner: We celebrated a friend's birthday at Margaritas Mexican Restaurant. Daniel and I split the Supreme Nachos.

Friday Dinner: I was craving Japanese food so we tried the local Tokyo Japan restaurant. I had the Hibachi Chicken. It was surprisingly good {and cheap}. 


Saturday Lunch: Nachos with leftovers from Monday night.


Saturday Dinner: Leftover Red Beans and Rice from last week.

Sunday Lunch: We went to Cracker Barrel in Huntsville and enjoyed breakfast.


Saturday Dinner: Burritos with leftovers from Monday night.

Saturday, April 16, 2011

Definitely Not a Hare

 
I am not a fast runner {not even remotely}. Most likely I will never be fast. And that is okay with me. Over the course of training for my first half marathon I have learned that I can hold a 12-minute mile pace comfortably for the first 6 miles. After that I slow down to a 15-minute pace. Like I said, I am not fast.

Today I completed my first 10 mile run. It was tough, but I managed to do it without walking. I don't have any grand hopes for my first half marathon... I just want to finish without walking.

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

52 Books: Book 19


I just wrapped up the third volume of the sci-fi trilogy by C.S. Lewis: That Hideous Strength. In this final chapter we learn that the dark forces of the universe are plotting to take over earth completely. They are using the scientific group N.I.C.E. {the National Institute of Coordinated Experiments} to recondition humans to their liking. Ransom, our hero from the first two books, is countering this attack by creating his own organization {Logres} to fight N.I.C.E. and the unseen dark forces.

During the course of the book it is revealed that the wizard Merlin {from the time of King Arthur} is to come back to life. Both N.I.C.E. and Logres are hoping to use Merlin to win this epic battle.

The title "That Hideous Strength" is taken from a poem written by David Lyndsay in 1555, Ane Dialog betuix Experience and ane Courteour, also known as The Monarche. The couplet in question, The shadow of that hyddeous strength, refers to the Tower of Babel. This is an important element when it comes to the final battle in the book.
 
That Hideous Strength can be read alone or as the final chapter in the trilogy.

I have to confess that the first few chapters of this book are very dry and boring. I pressed on because my dad had recommended it as an excellent social commentary, applicable to today as much as when it was written.

It was a good end to the trilogy though I wish it had either ended at the battle or had an ending that was wrapped up better – there were several loose ends that I would have like to see tied up. I found the part about Merlin a little out of place and I wish there had been more interaction of the eldil as there had been in the earlier books.

Excerpts from the book:
That is why it is of such immense importance for each of us to choose the right side. If you are to be neutral you become simply a pawn.

... his education had had the curious effect of making things that he read and wrote more real to him than things he saw.

"Why fool, it's the educated reader who can be gulled. All our difficulty comes with the others. When did you meet a workman who believes the papers? He takes it for granted that they're all propaganda and skips the leading articles... He is our problem. We have to recondition him. But the educated public, the people who read the high-brow weeklies, don't need reconditioning. They're all right already. They'll believe anything."

"You surely don't need to wait for a thing to happen before you tell the story of it."

They were all his enemies, playing upon his hopes and fears to reduce him to complete servility, certain to kill him if he broke away, and certain to kill him in the long run when he had served the purpose for which they wanted him.

Monday, April 11, 2011

Menu Recap

Last week's meals were as follows:


Monday Dinner: Tomato Orzo Soup {Recipe here}. Daniel gave it 4.6/5 stars.


Tuesday Dinner: Black Bean Burger {Recipe from 20 Something Cupcakes} with Baked Onion Rings {recipe from Gina's Skinny Recipes}. Daniel LOVES Black Bean Burgers so he gave this meal 4.73/5 stars. I am not a huge fan of Black Bean Burgers, so I would rate it 3/5.


Wednesday Dinner: Sauteed Chicken, Mushrooms and Asparagus on a bed of Whole Wheat Spaghetti. This is one of my favorite dishes for simple, fresh ingredients. Daniel gave this dish 4.2/5 stars.

Thursday Dinner: We ordered pizza from Papa John's


Friday Dinner: Red Beans and Rice {Recipe adapted from CDKitchen}. Daniel gave this 4.73/5 stars. I made it in a crockpot {including the rice} and it was perfect to come home to after an evening run. 

Saturday Dinner: We had leftovers for lunch then headed to the Walls of Jericho for some hiking. We were home by 7PM, but I didn't feel like cooking. Daniel heated up more leftovers and I had a bowl of cereal.

Sunday Lunch: We used a gift card we had to eat at Olive Garden in Huntsville. Not our favorite restaurant but it was good in terms of a free meal.

Sunday Dinner: More leftovers for Daniel and cereal for me.

Saturday, April 09, 2011

Walls of Jericho


Today Daniel and I headed up the the Skyline Wildlife Management Area to visit The Walls of Jericho. We had heard that it was a pretty sweet hike and since the weather was nice we thought we would give it a try.


The Alabama State Park website calls it the "Grand Canyon on the South." I have heard this slogan applied to several gorges in the southeast so I don't buy into the hype. It is a pretty canyon, but definitely not a "grand canyon." If you are purely looking for views, I would suggest you hit up Cloudland Canyon on Lookout Mountain {Georgia}.


Anyways, The Walls of Jericho is a pretty hike down into a gorge. At the end of the canyon you find a series of waterfalls and pools that you can wade in. There is also an entrance to a cave that you can access here. We were short on time and weren't equipped for spelunking so we just enjoyed the scenery.


My personal lesson from the day: Wear proper shoes and don't be stubborn.


Since it was a warm day, Daniel and I both decided to wear our Chaco sandals for hiking. Normally this would be fine. However, this is one of our first hikes of the year and it has just gotten warm enough for daily sandal wear. This means that the soles of my feet are not toughened yet. This also means that about 1.5 miles into the hike I noticed that I was starting to get hot spots. Daniel didn't have this same problem.


Not to be deterred from making it to the bottom, I pushed on. Daniel repeatedly told me that I would regret this decision on the climb out. I ignored his warning and we kept going. 


As we neared the bottom the pain was getting pretty bad, but I sucked it up and we made it into the gorge. I relished soaking my bare feet in the cold water, but having to turn around and hike out was almost unbearable.


I hiked out VERY SLOWLY. The hike itself was not bad, but every step felt like I was stepping on glass. I tried walking on different parts of my feet: my toes {which made my calves hurt}; the outsides of my feet {which messed with my hips}; the balls of my feet. None were good options. 


We finally made it out of the canyon. Normally I wouldn't rate this as a particularly hard hike {if you are used to hiking} but walking with blisters made the entire day brutal.

Wednesday, April 06, 2011

52 Books: Book 18


I just completed Perelandra by C.S. Lewis. It is the second book in a science fiction trilogy that Lewis wrote. The first book, Out of the Silent Planet, introduces us to the main character of the series: Ransom. In the opening book, Ransom finds himself a hostage who is being taken to Malacandra {or Mars}. Ransom learns that Mars is an old planet and that none of the planets have had contact with anyone from Earth in a very long time.

In the second book, Ransom is sent to Perelandra {also known as Venus}. Here he discovers that Venus is a relatively new planet and the only humans are one woman, The Lady, and one man, The King. It soon unfolds that the story of temptation in the Garden of Eden is playing out before Ransom's eyes.

Early in the book, Weston, one of the scientist's that took Ransom hostage in the first book, arrives on the planet. Weston no longer appears to be inhabiting his own body and Ransom realizes that an evil force is controlling the scientist's body {much like the serpent in the Garden of Eden was used}. Weston {or the Un-man as Ransom comes to call him} methodically works to convince The Lady of Venus to break the only rule of the country. Un-man has cunning arguments, is cruel to the creatures of Perelandra and never seems to tire. Eventually Ransom realizes that he has been sent to Venus to help prevent The Lady from giving in to temptation so that history does not repeat itself.

I found this to be a very intriguing book. Ransom's inner dialogue raises a lot of questions: Did Eve resist in the garden for many days? Weeks? Years perhaps? If an elephant had trampled on the serpent would the temptation have been killed with it? Would the temptation have come in another form if Eve had been able to resist?

Overall I really enjoyed this book. I thought it was thought provoking and I look forward to reading the final book in the series: That Hideous Strength.

Excerpts from the book:
It is the idea that humanity having now sufficiently corrupted the planet where it arose, must at all costs contrive to seed itself over a large area: that the vast astronomical distances which are God's quarantive regulations must somehow be overcome.

It surprised him that he could experience so extreme a terror and yet be walking and thinking – as men in war or sickness are surprised to find how much can be borne...

The image or her beautiful body had been offered to her only as a means to awake the far more perilous image of her great soul. The external and, as it were, dramatic conception of the self was the enemy's true aim.

Inner silence is for our {human} race a difficult achievement.

Tuesday, April 05, 2011

Guest Post on Cheap Food Here

Today I am guest posting over at Cheap Food Here. If you want to try a great recipe for Chicken Florentine Pizza, you should definitely check out my post.


Cheap Food Here is the brainchild of my friend Ashley. Ashley happens to live in Costa Rica and her blog offers great recipes as well as an insider's perspective on great {cheap} food to be found in the country of Costa Rica. If you are looking for healthy {cheap} recipes or have any interest in Costa Rica, you should check out Ashley's blog.



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