Sunday Confessions #132


We made it another week to Sunday and are almost done with January. Can you believe it?

My family is on the mend and I'm hoping we stay that way for the rest of the year. Covid, even Omicron is no joke and I don't want to go through that again.

Lets get to this weeks recap.


Weekly Menu #440 And The Book Of The Week
Book Review: Black Cake by Charmaine Wilkerson
Book Review: In a Garden Burning Gold
Sunday Confessions #133

I am currently 73% of the way through Black Cake by Charmaine Wilkerson. this is an incredible read about two estranged siblings having to deal with their mothers death and her past full of secrets that. It's super good and I can't wait to share my review with you next week.

Nothing new this week.

We don't talk about Bruno from the Disney movie soundtrack. If you have been anywhere on the internet, you've heard this song at least once. My youngest is obsessed with this movie and I guess I am too.

I've run out of creepy paranormal tv shows to watch since I've been stuck at home for a week with covid, so I started watching these yahoos in Destination Fear. I have so many feels about this show, and although I feel that its very juvenile and the main guy Dakota is on a power trip, they sometimes get some paranormal evidence and that is why I watch it. 

Not for the screaming running children...

6/100 2022 Reading Challenge

On to the next. Happy reading.

Book Review: All the Little Hopes by Leah Weiss


Title: All the Little Hopes

By: Leah Weiss

Genre: Historical Fiction

Pages: 368

Release Date: July 27th, 2021

Publisher: Sourcebooks Landmark

Rating: ★★★★☆


Summary from Goodreads:

Deep in the tobacco land of North Carolina, nothing's the same since the boys shipped off to war and worry took their place. Thirteen-year-old Lucy Brown is curious and clever, but she can't make sense of it all. Then Allie Bert Tucker comes to town, an outcast with a complicated past, and Lucy believes that together they can solve crimes. Just like her hero, Nancy Drew.

That chance comes when a man goes missing, a woman stops speaking, and an eccentric gives the girls a mystery that takes them beyond the ordinary. Their quiet town, seasoned with honeybees and sweet tea, becomes home to a Nazi prisoner-of-war camp—and more men go missing. The pair set out to answer the big question: do we ever really know who the enemy is?

Lush with Southern atmosphere, All The Little Hopes, is the story of two girls growing up while war creeps closer, blurring the difference between what's right, what's wrong, and what we know to be true


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A wonderful painting of southern history and the human heart.

This book was full of layers upon layers. The characters are so full of emotions, colorful and full of depth. Leah Weiss has managed to weave a wonderful plot line, with intertwining back stories that push the story forward.

The true friendship between the main characters Lucy and Bert is enduring and truly something to strive for. Life swirls around them with mysteries to solve, fun tea parties and and growing up in post world war 2 era times.

This was a really interesting read that kept me involved through the entire book. A great historical fiction.

Movie Review: Hotel Transylvania - Transformania


Title: Hotel Transylvania - Transformania

Genre: Paranormal/Comedy

Release Date: January 14th, 2022

My Rating: ★★★★★

IMDB Rating: 6.1/10

Cast: Andy Samberg, Selena Gomez, Jim Gaffigan


Summary from IMDB: 

When Van Helsing's mysterious invention, the "Monsterfication Ray", goes haywire, Drac and his monster pals are all transformed into humans, and Johnny becomes a monster. In their new mismatched bodies, Drac, stripped of his powers, and an exuberant Johnny, loving life as a monster, must team up and race across the globe to find a cure before it's too late, and before they drive each other crazy. With help from Mavis and the hilariously human Drac Pack, the heat is on to find a way to switch themselves back before their transformations become permanent.


IMDB Trailer



I always base my review of a family movie off the reaction of my kids. My eight year old is a bid fan of the previous Hotel Transylvania, and I was curious to see what he thought of this one.

The laughs and drama started strong from the beginning. Drac and Johnny have their differences and of course its the same old Drac being a butt head and Johnny way to out there and terrifying Drac. Something I found out when I was researching the movie for this review, Drac is not voiced by Adam Sandler like in past Hotel Transylvania movies. Sony used a new voice actor, Brian Hull who did an amazing job, and to tell you the truth, I never knew until I looked it up.

The script is well written with a great plot and some new characters that I love. Van Helsing is a creepy little half robot man living in the hotel basement. Jim Gaffigan does and amazing job voicing him.

Half way through the movie, my fourteen year old even came out of his room to watch with us. When a teenager enjoys it, you know there's something there.

This was a great family film for any movie night. I would highly recommend it for anyone.

Book Review: The last Duel by Eric Jager


Title: The Last Duel

By: Eric Jager

Genre: Historical

Pages: 256

Release Date: October 12th, 2004

Publisher: Crown

Rating: ★★★★☆


Summary from Goodreads:

"In 1386, a few days after Christmas, a huge crowd gathers at a Paris monastery to watch the two men fight a duel to the death meant to "prove" which man's cause is right in God's sight. The dramatic true story of the knight, the squire, and the lady unfolds during the devastating Hundred Years' War between France and England, as enemy troops pillage the land, madness haunts the French court, the Great Schism splits the Church, Muslim armies threaten Christendom, and rebellion, treachery, and plague turn the lives of all into toys of Fortune." "At the heart of the tale is Jean de Carrouges, a Norman knight who returns from combat in Scotland to find his wife, Marguerite, accusing Jacques Le Gris, her husband's old friend and fellow courtier, of brutally raping her. The knight takes his cause before the teenage King Charles VI, the highest judge in France. Amid Le Gris's vociferous claims of innocence and doubts about the now pregnant Marguerite's charges (and about the paternity of her child), the deadlocked court decrees a "trial by combat" that leaves her fate, too, in the balance. For if her husband and champion loses the duel, she will be put to death as a false accuser." Carrouges and Le Gris, in full armor, eventually meet on a walled field in Paris before a massive crowd that includes the king and many nobles of the realm. A fierce fight on horseback and then on foot ensues during which both combatants suffer wounds - but only one is fatal. The violent and tragic episode was notorious in its time owing to the nature of the alleged crime, the legal impasse it provoked, and the resulting trial by combat, an ancient but increasingly suspect institution that was thereafter abolished. 


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An incredibly savage story of love and honor.

This story really intrigued me after I heard of the movie with Matt Damon and Adam Driver. Still haven't seen the movie, but the book is somewhat of an oddity for me.

The author's writing style in this book is very history based. It was more of lecture in facts, than a smooth suspenseful story. My mind craved the drama, but the dry words left on the page made me wonder if I was going to be able to finish the book. The only thing that kept me reading was the completely insane laws the French had, and how the characters survived by the seat of their pants.

One fact that really stuck with me was the law about rape. If a woman confessed to being raped, and her husband decided to take vengeance on the man accused of raping his wife, if the husband lost the duel, not only would he lose his life, but his fie that was the victim of such a heinous act, would be burned at the steak as a liar. Why would any woman want to confess to such a horrible thing? History shows itself over and over again how deeply scared our justice system is.

This book was short and the history was interesting, I just wished the writing was a little less textbook and a bit more dramatic. Still, a wonderful read.

Bookshelf Confessions January 2022


Its a new year and new chances to read some amazing books. Lets take a look at the books I have out there on my bookshelf.

Still trying to get my hands on Bravely by Maggie Stiefvater.

This was the last book that I received a few weeks ago. I'm in love with this series and can't wait to share what I thought of the last installment of the Outlander series. 

There are some good looking books on my bookshelf that I can't wait to get my hands on and read. What is that one book you are looking forward to this month?

Weekly Menu #439 And The Book Of The Week


Hello Monday!

It has been a hell of a week. My family came down with covid. Two out of five of us didn't show any symptoms except they were tires. My youngest two had fevers for less than two days and I was hit the hardest. Its not surprising since I have a compromised immune system and can't even fight off a common could well. Still suffering from the after effects. What I will take away from this is, if I had to get any variant, I'm grateful it was omicron. Any other variant and I would have been hospitalized or died.

I've finally read much of my backlog and can the next book on my list is Go Tell the Bees That I Am Gone by Diana Gabaldon, the next book in the Outlander series. I've been waiting for this book to come out and I can't wait to finally read it.

On to the weekly menu. Enjoy!



Mongolian Beef



Sheet Pan Sausage and Arugula



Beef Flauta Supreme



Monterey Jack Unfried Chicken



Zingy Gouda Burger






Leftovers Night

Sunday Confessions #131


Well, its Sunday, and a terrible thing has happened... My family got covid...

We've held out for almost 2 years. Vaccinated, quarantined, did our part, and here we are with this darn omicron variant. Pretty sure I know where we got it from, but can't prove it so I will refrain from passing judgement on them.

Lets get tot he recap.


Weekly Menu #439 And The Book Of The Week
Book Review: The last Duel by Eric Jager
Book Review: All the Little Hopes by Leah Weiss
Sunday Confessions #132

In a Garden Burning Gold by Rory Power. I've had this book for a while now and its time to dive into its covers and see what jewels its story has to offer.

Currently watching Moana. Its part of our Disney animated movie binge with my youngest son who is trying to keep his mind off the fact that he as covid and has been hallucinating. Scared the poops out of me and him as well. Whatever he needs to watch to keep him happy, we shall do so. 

I made this blackberry rum swizzle the other day before all the sickness in our household and this recipe from Peanut Butter & Fitness is amazing. We tried the original recipe, but also tried it with a little bitt of 7up to give it a bit of fizz and OMG, so good. You can't even taste the rum. 

3/100 2022 Reading Challenge

Hoping for a quick recovery of my family. Happy reading.