Books, Booze and Bajingos: Big Little Lies by Liane Moriarty

Last Tuesday night was the monthly meet-up (via Ventrillo) of my book club, Books, Booze & Bajingos. It’s taken me a minute to get this post up, but here is the run down…

This month’s book was Big Little Lies by Liane Moriarty.

Another hit. It was a great book that we all read in basically one sitting. Maile even re-read it.

SPOILER ALERT: This post will contain spoilers for this book. If you are reading it or haven’t finished reading it, stop now!

The characters were very well written. The three protagonists, Madeline, Jane and Celeste, were well-rounded and very relatable. The other characters were very real and fleshed-out, as well.

I loved the richness of Madeline’s character, the girly-girl type, mother of two, dealing with an ex-husband and his new hippie wife and their teenage daughter’s rebellious phase. Madeline is a fun and solid type of person, and while she likes to add the flair of the dramatic with social rivalries, she is actually, in my opinion, pretty down to earth (which comes through when she is dealing with her daughter).

Jane is so delicately broken that you just want to protect her and see her smile. Her little son, Ziggy, melted my heart. As we slowly learn what happened to her in her past that made her this person desperate to be invisible, you just want to step in between her and the past that haunts her, or at least that is how I felt.

Finally, the beautiful and battered Celeste. This character was so subtly written and held such depth, I can’t even begin to go into how much props I would like to give the author for the way she wrote about Celeste and the life she was trapped in living.

The element Liane Moriarty added to the prose, interjecting snippets of interviews with a reporter and the people of this small town about the incident that happens at the climax, is a little jarring at first. For myself, that part made it hard for me to get into the book. I honestly don’t know how long I would have dragged my feet with this book if I hadn’t checked it out from the library. As it was, I had to return it Christmas day, so I spent Christmas Eve devouring it. It’s a great book, and you have to read those snippets as comedic breaks in a book that deals with some very heavy issues (like the “nature vs. nurture” debate she snuck into the book).

We all agreed that we were happy with who died and who killed him. I don’t want to have too many spoilers in this post, because it is a really great book we all highly recommend it for others to read. Annie even told us that she saw they were making it into a TV mini-series. I’d like to see how the book transitions from print to film.

January’s book was chosen by your’s truly:


My pick is:

Happy New Year!

The stats helper monkeys prepared a 2014 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

A New York City subway train holds 1,200 people. This blog was viewed about 5,600 times in 2014. If it were a NYC subway train, it would take about 5 trips to carry that many people.

Click here to see the complete report.

2014, we say farewell to thee


As 2014 draws to a close, I look back and find myself thinking “huh, not much happened” but that isn’t the whole case. This past year, a few big things did happen, even if there is no physical evidence.

Mr. LL and I tried to begin the hunt for a house. Only to discover that we can’t fufill that dream right now. It was a disheartening experience and some of my fears that were giving me the worst anxiety came true. But all we can do is work harder towards this goal.

We had some other struggles this year with family getting sick. We spent a lot of time in hospitals at one point, this year. Then we spent a lot of time trying to help and encourage people to get better and do better. In the end, you can only help those who are willing to help themselves.

But there were some highlights to 2014, as well.

Mr. LL and I celebrated being married for one year. 🙂 We took a trip to a place we’d never been before (or heard of before) and had an amazing time in Kemah, TX.

Speaking of marriage, my big brother and my friend Diana got married this year, back in March. I now have a new sister and a new nephew in my little side family (speaking comparatively to Mr. LL’s gigantic family).

Mr. LL and I also took a trip to St. Francisville, LA, for some much needed (and last minute) R&R. It was beautiful and quiet. I hope we can go back someday.

I got to stretch my photography skills at my day-job this year, too. That was so much fun and I really hope I get more opportunities to do those kind of projects again.

While we are on the subject of projects, I cannot reflect on 2014 without talking about the biggest thing that happened to me, personally, this year. My friend and former co-worker, Megan Braden-Perry reached out to me to illustrate her first children’s book. It was an amazing experience to work with her and to see this book go through the stages. This project even led another person with a children’s book to contact me to illustrate it (however, after the initial meeting and proposal, I’ve never heard from them again–they weren’t ready to undertake this project, IMO).

Then there are the not so tangible changes that have happened. I’ve been going through a lot of soul searching this past year. There are some big changes in the pipe-line for 2015. Some of them scare the shit out of me. Ok, all the changes I’m going to be brave and undertake next year scare the shit out of me. However, I cannot let fear rule my life, so I just keep reflecting on this quote:

Everything you’ve ever wanted is on the other side of fear.” -George Addair

So, farewell to 2014. I hope for better things to come in 2015.

A break from your regularly scheduled programing

I am taking a break from the blog. Sort of.

What I mean to say is, I am making some pretty significant changes to the blog and so I won’t be posting as much for awhile. I will try to still post a few things, but they may be abbreviated versions of my regular posts or there will be days that I don’t post at all.

I hope to be back to blogging regularly on January 19th. Have a Happy New Year!

Link Love: 12.23.14

Here are some holiday traditions that you can start or just learn about. 🙂

In Celebration Of Sant Nicholas Day! | GardenMama

Cookie Decorating Party | Paper Oranges

Sexy Stocking | The Dating Divas

Rice Krispie Houses | The Chaos and The Clutter

After this year’s gingerbread house disaster, lol, I think we will try this new tradition next year.

Tips for a Tree Decorating Family Night | Fleece Fun

10 Peculiar Holiday Traditions You May Not Know About | BuzzFeed


Gift Guide: Last Minute

It’s down to the wire and you need a gift! Here are some ideas.


  1. ULTA Gift Card for the ladies (who like make-up and other beauty products)
  2. Ipsy subscription (a monthly subscription service that will send your gift receiver a make-up bag filled with full/luxury sized products)
  3. Nerd Block subscription (a monthly subscription service that will send your gift receiver toys and t-shirts with a different theme each month)
  4. A bottle of wine
  5. Amazon Gift Card
  6. Charitable Donation in their name (and if you live in NOLA, check out this guide filled with the non-profits and charities in the area)