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It’s not my fault. Really. :lol:

It all started with a nudge from a friend. She pasted a picture of some shoes and tagged me. Not just any shoes. Nope.

Chicken shoes. <3 <3 <3

Not only are you not surprised that someone would send me something chicken-related, but you’re not surprised to find that something was shoes, either. I mean, you already know about my love affair with Hobbit Feet, and you prolly remember my finding the flipper shoes and sharing them with you, in addition to some other interesting footwear.

So, I know you aren’t surprised that I’m sharing the chicken shoe offering with you, too. :D You’ve probably already seen them, but for the uninitiated, here ya go: Chicken Shoes!

chickenheel3

Now, before you roll your eyes and go gettin’ all disappointed on me since your love affair with chicken only involves eating them, I’m going to indulge myself you and share with you an entire gallery of chicken foot wear. You’re welcome. :D

 

beehivechicken

chickenheel2

chickenheelchickensandals

 

bawk

Whilst I was very pleasantly surprised to find additional footwear, the original funky shoes that came to mind were shoes designed by an “artist.” Now, in my mind, these offerings are more like “taxidermy meets Halloween costumes,” but that’s just me. I mean, if Lady Gaga can wear a meat dress, why not?

meatdress

 

Here’s some of the gallery. The first images are from artist Iris Schieferstein. Her website is in German, and she’s been written about in numerous articles, including HuffPost, etc.

Y’all- this are actual taxidermy shoes, so go grab yer barf bucket before scrolling down.

 

horseheel

animalshoes

fuzzyhoof

moleslippers

birdshoes

 

There seem to be some here that may not be actual, wearable shoes. What do you think?

 

silverheels

shaggyhooves

deerhooveswithdewclaw

giraffeheel

goldenhooves

hoofheel1

hoofmule

hoofshoe

hooves

multihooves

metamorphis

paintshoe

spikeyboots

And, because I couldn’t help myself:

feet

:lol: :lol: :lol:

This weird shoe stuff sucks me into a serious time warp. I’m incapable of not sharing some of my favorites, so grab a snack and let’s go!

Living shoes?

fishheel

spiderew

Animal fun.

How much is that doggy in the window?

How much is that doggy in the window?

Kin to the mole slippers.....

Kin to the mole slippers…..

fishy

Gag a maggot!

Gag a maggot!

Stinky feet

Stinky feet

Whistle while you work…………….

Hmmmmm???

Hmmmmm???

Shovel while you walk!

Shovel while you walk!

workshoes

Janitor duty

Janitor duty

A whole category of dinner shoes!

Dinner or lunch?

Dinner or lunch?

I'm thinking lunch....

I’m thinking lunch….

Lady and the Tramp

Lady and the Tramp

Definitely dessert!

Definitely dessert!

gobananas

Back to breakfast.

I don’t even know what to do with these…………………

ladders

popeye

Rarrrrr!

Rarrrrr!

What's the point?

What’s the point?

Now these, though, I’m pretty sure you’d better have good balance unless you’d end up crashing and dying like me. Heh,

Early Heelie wheelie shoe?

Early Heelie wheelie shoe?

 

EEEK! Help! I've fallen and I can't get up!

EEEK! Help! I’ve fallen and I can’t get up!

skinnywheels

What they won’t have as inspiration…….. {cover your eyes, kids}

Bottoms up!

Bottoms up!

Fertility shoes??

Whew. If you’ve made it to the end here, I figure you should get a reward. Since I can’t give you cookies, how about this?

If I’ve just managed to whet your appetite, search for weird shoes. That’ll get ya laughing!

Which ones are your favorites? Leave me a comment and let me know!

And, because we all need some tunes while we’re perusing these glorius gems, sing along, kids!

On The Road Again


You may recall that it was time for me to get new running shoes….. I really don’t like it when I go to replace something I love only to find out it’s no longer available and things have changed. BOOOO!

So I ordered not one, but two pairs of Vibram Five Fingers shoes. I had read reviews on See Ya Lses seeyalsesthat indicated they weren’t the best for cold weather running. To cover my bases, I also ordered the KMD Lses.

Let me just say that the US sizing is not accurate. I much prefer the UK sizing where your foot is actually measured. If you’re a girl in the US, you will no doubt know that shoes {and jeans, and tops, etc etc} vary wildly depending on shoe. It would have been nice to have had the option to order the UK sizing like before.

When the See Ya Lses arrived, they were entirely too big. They are shaped differently, too, which made me worry about the higher heel digging into my Achille’s. I sent them back.

In the mean time, the KMD Lses arrived, so I wasn’t totally dead in the water. I got 15 miles on them before the other pair arrived in the right size. kmdsportlsKMDs were fine. The toe pockets seemed a bit snug, but I’m sure they will stretch out just fine. I love the lower, padded heel. I think I prefer this lace system over the See Ya Lses. They also feel like they have a thicker sole, which is good to keep in mind.

I’ve been running pretty regularly in the See Ya Lses, and have around 50 miles on them. The toe pockets are looser. The second time I wore them, I ended up with a bloody toe. There must have been something in that toe pocket, because after that, I had no issues running in them. I’m not sure I’m real keen on the lace system- these are actually tied like regular shoes. It doesn’t seem to be any wider than the KMD LSes’ lace system.

My concern about the shape of the fabric on the heel to this point is not a real issue. I can feel it on the back of my foot, but the suede is actually pretty soft. The color on mine does bleed, but it washes right off.

The one thing I really like about both is the insole is yellow. The white insole of the Bikilas always bothered me because it never really came clean with washing. Both will wear better in that regard, I think. I also appreciate that they aren’t removable, like my older Komodosport Lses are. I always worry that they’ll come out when washing and then never go back in the right way. It hasn’t happened yet, but I don’t wear them the same as I do the others.

I am really eager to get back outside, but I do have to say I still dread having to weave through the gravel. Even with new shoes that aren’t worn as much, I am NOT loving running on rocks. If things stay calmer around here, I’ll give it a shot. {As it turns out, both of the bulls are still loose- will update on that deal in a bit.}

Anyhow. For what it’s worth, I’m giving them both a total thumbs up because I’m on the road again……………

 


Coast Guard Lieutenant Sam Merrill was having a run-of-the-mill kind of day, and this call seemed to be much of the same. Much of the same, that is, until he saw the condition of the vessel.  hotpursuit

“A boat this size in this condition made no sense. There had been no heavy weather in the water for a month. No running lights, no signs of movement cutting through the faintly phosphorescent mist. And it was dead in the water. In what looked like the only fresh paint on the vessel, black letters spelling G H O S T were spread across the fantail. No home port, another oddity for a boat of this type. It looked like a set-up.”

Following the blaring headlines of, “COAST GUARD NETS BILLION DOLLAR DRUG HAUL!” Sam and his wife, Amy, are swept off to an all-expenses paid vacation, courtesy of the government. Major news outlets were calling him a hero, and Sam was feeling very much the fraud, trying to figure that one out. Even the President of the United States of America gave them a verbal send off of, “a much-deserved vacation” to the Bahamas.

What the heck?!

A set-up, indeed.

As Sam escapes the “autograph hounds” and heads upstairs to their room, Amy continues her lap swimming. Exiting the elevator, it takes him a minute to comprehend that he’s hearing muffled screams. He races to his room, only to find the door already partially open.

“He could see through to the balcony, where one of the white-clad German-looking men was leaning over the railing, looking down. The screams were louder, clearer. How me any others were there? How many had he seen enter the elevator? Merrill had to do something quickly- now! If these guys were in their room, their partners were after Amy downstairs.”

During his struggles with the three men in his room, Sam’s fears were confirmed. “…….finally saw Amy in the middle of the pool struggling with the other three.” Finishing off the last of the three men in his room after trying to get him to tell where they were taking her, Sam races downstairs.

He was too late……………….

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

So, I was reading through my email and came across an invitation to review a title from Open Road Integrated Media. Apparently, they also use Net Galley, “……….. a service to promote titles to professional readers of influence.”  :lol: {yep, I’m still giggling :) } And you know I never turn down a freebie book to review, so I was more than happy to accept the title.

The foreword of this book is engaging. I learned that the author, Roderick Thorp,  had three of his books made into movies, including the iconic Die Hard. This manuscript for this title was written in 1995; the last before his death in 1999. It had not been published prior to his death, and as a result, there were no revisions. This book, as is, is exactly what Roderick Thorp wrote.

And it is spellbinding.

I haven’t read a book that I could not put down in a really long time. Sure, there were others I didn’t want to put down, but eventually got too sleepy and sleep won.

But this book? No way. I was up until the wee hours of the morning to finish this one. My heart was pounding, and I really wished I could read faster. I was exhausted the next day, but it was so, so well worth it. I haven’t been smitten with a book like this in a really long time; maybe ever.

Anyhow. If mystery, intrigue, kidnapping, deviant behavior with a hint of government conspiracy is your cup of tea, get to drinking this one asap! You will NOT be sorry!

Even though I don’t have to rate this one or leave a review anywhere, I am giving it 5 out of 5 stars and most definitely WILL. Don’t miss it!


1814 was a rough year. The British have taken control of Michilimackinac Island. If the Americans on the island want to stay there, they must swear loyalty to the Brits. Swearing loyalty, though, doesn’t make the British soldiers any less the enemy…….  capturedbylove

Everyone is hungry. Angelique does what she can to help her blind future mother-in-law by sneaking her the food the she manages to hide away. If her guardian, Ebenezer Whiley, catches her, the punishment will be severe. He’s got a cruel streak a mile wide, and since marrying her sister off, Angelique gets the brunt of his anger.

And, to top it off, his pregnant wife is hugely jealous of Angelique and is convinced she’s letting him in her bed. Angelique would rather be dead.

That morning, she nearly got her wish. Accosted in the forest by quartermaster Lieutenant Steele. Although drunk and barely managing to stay upright, she is no match for his strength. He threatens to tell her guardian; she knows she can report him for breaking curfew and being outside the fort. While he may get lashed, she knows he’d be back to punish her, too.

Relentless in his pursuit of more than food, she feels her life force draining away, as his hands clamped around her throat prevent her from breathing. The last thing she remembers hearing before the darkness claimed her permanently is a loud “thwack.” “Instantly, the deathly chain around her neck fell away.”

She recognized her savior as a voyageur; a canoe-paddling fur trader. As he retreats into the forest, Angelique must see his face. He motions her to be silent as he faces her, yet she cannot contain her gasp. It’s Pierre Durant.

Pierre.

Her fiancee Jean’s brother.

Pierre.

Her first love.

Pierre.

Her only love…………………..

 

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

 

This is the third title in the Michigan Brides Collection. I have not read the first book, but I absolutely adored the second book, A Noble Groom.  I was thrilled to realize this was another title in the series, as author Jody Hedlund has been added to my ‘favorite authors’ list.

One of the things I liked best about this book was that, despite the imminent danger, the final issue boiled down to choosing between two honorable men. I can’t say a whole lot more without spoiling the plot, so I’ll have to leave it there.

As with the last book in the series, this one also gets a 5 out of 5 stars from me. I’d give it more if I could. I’m enjoying this series so much that I might actually go back and buy the first book if I don’t ever get a chance to review it.

I received this book for free from Bethany House publishers (www.bethanyhouse.com) for this review.

 


Joan’s life took an unexpected, tragic turn when at the tender age of 4. Since her father’s beheading, everything has been a struggle for her family.  atripleknot

Joan’s close friendship with her cousin, the future King Edward III, leaves her in a difficult position, seeing as Edward has sworn to marry her. Joan, however, is disinclined, and Edward’s family agrees. They have plans to make a strategic marriage for her, as is customary.

Joan, however, is a Plantagenet. Or, in other words; headstrong. Temperamental. Blessed with striking good looks. Trouble. Being such, she has no plans to marry either the child molester or the homosexual the royals have in mind for her.

No, Joan wants to marry for love- even if her love is below her station. To thwart the plans of the dowager queen, Joan marries in secret……..

When Joan is forced to marry the royal family’s pick, it’s a race to the king to have him determine which husband she is really married to.

 

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

I have read other books that detail the life of Joan of Kent, and I find her story heart-wrenchingly sad. I can say that, without a doubt, I have absolutely *zero* desire to have been born a royal in that, or really, any other time, less modern day {and even that is questionable}. As you probably know, women were chattel; to be used as the men in their lives saw fit. Horrible.

This tale in particular, is filled with the kind of drama that modern-day soap operas can’t come close to touching.

From the beginning, this book was hard to put down. The family guide in the beginning was helpful, but the huge amount of characters was a tad confusing, even when I knew the basics of the story. Because this was based on fact, there’s not much the author could have done about that, though.

The only thing that really bothered me was the shift in perspectives. I don’t think it added much to the story, because the shift took place quite a ways in. It felt unnatural and unnecessary. I think that unless there was the perspective change from the beginning, those chapters should have been left out entirely or modified to reflect Joan’s perspective to keep a more streamlined writing.

My edition was an un-proofed e-copy, but I didn’t see any real issues.

Because of the change of perspectives being annoying, I’m going to give this one 4.5 out of 5 stars.

I received this book for free from WaterBrook Multnomah Publishing Group for this review.

Please click and rank my review!

Rank this Review!

 

 


I’ve been hearing Sarah Brightman {with Andrea Bocelli} in my head this last week; ya know, because life is a soundtrack and all that jazz.

If you’ve been reading along, you’ll remember that I hate shopping.  I hate shopping so much I’m seriously thinking about making a category, just so y’all can kvetch with me. Erg.

So anyhow.

June of 2011 brought me to a critical point in my decades of running when, thanks to my chronic illness{s} and my plantar fasciitis, I realized something serious needed to change if I was going to not only walk without pain, but continue running. I spent a boatload of time researching, as I do with all things. I am not prone to leaping into fads, and do what I can to avoid them. By the time I got around to ordering my hobbit feet,  aka Vibram Five Finger Bikilas, I was pretty much at my wits end, and at the end of options to try. Bikila VFFs

I knew there would be a period of time to transition into them full time, which I wrote about. I also promised periodic updates, which I managed to keep up with up to the point we moved. My last post about my VFFs was in May of 2012, when I hit 1,000 miles. I am sad to say, my running tanked when we moved. It was sporadic at best, and it’s taken me over 2 years to log close to another 500 miles. :shock:

There has been SO much to do on the farm; not just chickens and horses, but painting the whole house, including doors, windows, and all the miles of moldings. I haven’t gotten a whole lot finished, but I did manage to get the really bad blood spatter painted over. I still have curtains to make for every room but one. And that’s just inside. I have a ton to paint outside, too.u

With Hunny away for work and me basically single-parenting day-to-day, I reached a point where it was time to get back to my running. In many ways, it’s been really tough to have to build my mileage back up. I started at 4 miles and worked my way back up to 5 miles {and some change}. Hah!

I think I’ll prolly have to hold steady through the summer, unless it cools off, because wow. I left late this morning at 7:15 and it was 80 degrees when I got home, with a 90 something % humidity. Coming from the desert, the humidity while running takes some getting used to. I make a point to leave early, but overslept today.

Over the course of the past week, I’ve noticed spots on the bottom of my shoes getting really thin. I am not a fan of gravel, which my road in either direction is, for nearly 1/2 mile in the one direction I regularly go. I had been looking online periodically for my next shoe, and have been extremely disappointed to see that my beloved Bikilas are not made any more. They have the Bikila Lses, which have laces. And then they have the Bikila EVOs, which have a thicker sole and are for folks transitioning into minimalist running shoes. Ugh, ugh, ugh.

I briefly thought about turning my Komodosport LSes KomodosportLS into my running shoes, but honestly, I’d rather save them for wearing for the rare occasions I’m not wearing flip flops or boots.

In a mad dash, I got online and ordered what I could find that looked like it would work. I ordered the See Ya Lses from the Vibram website. I was really excited when the See Ya Lses came today. I put them on, and then got really disappointed. seeyalses

Vibram has changed their US sizing. Instead of measuring your foot as before, now they ask you for your shoe size. I don’t know about you, but I notice that with traditional shoes, like clothes, the size is variable to the shoe. Frustrating! :mad:

They are too big. Like, by at least a size. I tried them on and wore them around the house. Not only are they too long, but they are too wide. Any Vibram that has the laces are made for slightly wider feet, which I have, but the fit on these was just plain wonky.

Perhaps the most concerning feature was the heel. If you look at the pictures, you can see how the heels on the See Yas are pointy. That part right there is much taller, and digs into the back of my Achilles. I had them on for not even an hour and had a pressure mark on the back of my foot when I took them off. My plan is to return them for a smaller size and see if the right size makes a difference in that part of the fit.

Another thing I had read in some of the reviews, is that because they’re largly mesh {aka, “breathable;” and  is hard to see from these pictures, but is pretty clear on Zappos.com}, folks have said they are not good for winter running unless you wear socks. And we all know what my sock situation is like!

Earlier this eveing, I spent several hours online looking for other Vibram models; thus, my conundrum. I went back to the Vibram website to see what else they had. Right now it’s slim pickins’ because they just had a huge sale and are out of stock on numerous models. After hunting for hours, I ordered another pair from Zappos.

The Vibram KMD Sport Lses are, as near as I can figure, the updated version of the Komodo Sport Lses. kmdsportls How ironic is that?! I figure, if I still don’t like the fit of the See Ya Lses, I can send them back. If I like them, I can wear the KMDs during the colder months if I don’t want to wear socks. At the very least, they have the notched heel like I’m used to, with a bit of cushioning there, too. And, if I love the See Ya Lses, I can hang onto the KMDs and wear them when the others need to be replaced.

Of additional concern are the reviews that say all of these models wear out quickly. We’ll see.

My original Bikilas, as I mentioned, have lasted just over 1,425 miles. By the time the others get here, it will be close to or over 1,500.

1426miles.2

 

1426miles1

The foot bed in the right shoe has started to rip, and in that same shoe, the whole foot bed is wrinkly because the adhesive is shot. The upside is that it didn’t really bother me. Two days ago, I ran the last mile with what I thought was a pebble in one of the toes, only to discover it was actually a little black beetle that was still alive!

And then today, the gravel got me hard in the middle of my foot.  rockSeeing as that is not part of the foot that generally comes into hard contact with the road, you can tell I was distracted by one of the dogs who I to run back to the house because, as a border collie, she wants to run circles around the cars that pass us on the road. :/

So, as much as I hate to, it’s time to say goodbye. I am hopeful that I actually can find another pair of VFFs that I like as well, and is as well made. There is something really fantastic about not having to change out your running shoes every 300 miles!

Here’s also hoping I can get this song unstuck from my head…. :lol:

 


Tina Cahill is on a mission. She is going to shut down the saloon at any expense! Well, they have to notice her first. Her daily picketing doesn’t seem to be having much effect, but she’s still trying! stucktogether

Even though she’s convinced everyone hates her, they sure don’t mind her cooking. But with the former cook at Glynna’s locked up for trying to murder Dr. Riker, Glynna’s husband, she figures they tolerate her just so they don’t have to try and gnaw on Glynna’s food. And, to make matters worse, she keeps running into “Invincible Vince,” of Regulator fame and town sheriff.

This afternoon’s picketing brings an all-out sidewalk brawl and trough dunkings. If anyone asked, Vince would be the first person to tell you what a thorn in his side she is! Despite Tina being easy on the eyes and Vince being one of the last remaining single men in town, marriage is not in the cards for him. Between his tyrannical father and his mother’s mental issue, there is no way he’d curse a wife and kids with those genetics.

And yet………

When Vince’s father arrives with his mother and a sister he didn’t know about in tow, and then sneaks off as quickly, Vince finds himself having to lean on his Regulator family- including Tina. Things come to a head when, “Tina’s picketing at the saloon has revealed a dark secret that could put everyone Vince loves in danger.”

~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~

This is a no-brainer. I love Mary Connealy’s writing. This is the third title in the Trouble in Texas series. I have reviewed the first two books, Swept Away, and Fired Up. As usual, this title gets 5 out of 5 stars. I was really excited to find this one available for review. Definitely add this title to your reading list!

Mary Connealy’s  website has all of her titles- be sure to check it out!

I received this book from Bethany House Publishers for this unbiased review.

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