Shadow and Bone

Author: Leigh Bardugo
Publisher: Imprint
Genre: young adult, fantasy
⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️/5


February 2022 Book of the Month!


I think it was a really great book and a great start to the trilogy. I really like fantasy books with a great world building that you kind of stop every so often and can almost picture where they are and what they are doing in the story. I also love an element of magic and supernatural powers.

I would recommend this book to people who love completely made up worlds in the fantasy genre. I absolutely loved it and the story gave a heck of a turn for me and that’s really where it picked up. So if you like those kinds of twists and turns, I think you’d like this book.

I might consider this book and possibly the series as a re-read possibility but it may not be in the near future. It’s kind of like Harry Potter and Percy Jackson, there might be years in between re-reads.

I did enjoy the writing style of Leigh Bardugo. I’m not entirely sure what about the book is keeping me from rating this book 5 stars, but there is. I think there might have been something about the characters that I didn’t like or how the story went. I’m not entirely sure but I just couldn’t give it 5 stars.

I was very in to the story though. I kept turning the page every time and I had to keep stopping every couple of chapters otherwise I would’ve read the book in 24 hours.

Overall it was a great story and great world building. I have already read the second book in the series and I’m about to start the final book. I might not read the other series in the Grishaverse though. I don’t particularly want to get stuck in a rabbit hole in a multiple series story because I’ve had bad experiences with them in the past. (Looking at you Erin Hunter) But as the book goes on its own, it’s great.


2022 Reading Goal

Book #12 out of 50

2022 Reading Challenge

None

Season Three: Episode Ten

MARCH 20, 2022

This week I’m going to call around to see where I can get a Department of Transportation physical for work. I also have to get my drivers abstract but the DOT physical is the hardest to get. There are 13 places in Hilo that I can get one done. Besides our Urgent Care, the others are physicians that I’m not a patient of.

I would like to get the physical done this week but I have to call and set an appointment for it. If they can’t take me in, then I’d have to try and see if the other physicians will take me just for the physical.

I’m really excited to get back to work for this company. It’s been two years since I was there and I loved meeting new people and sharing my home with them. But most of all, I loved when they would go home. There are too many people coming to live in Hawaii because it’s “paradise” and they drive up the cost of homes here. Very disheartening.

I have to take my A1C blood test on the 31st in time for my endocrinologist appointment and I’m not looking forward to it. I think it’ll be easier to get in to the office now than during the pandemic, but I won’t be sure until I get there to see what procedures they still have.

Every time I get my blood drawn, I get on my phone and scroll social media or play a game on my phone or literally anything else but look at what they’re doing to my arm. One time, I counted the little lines on the frosted glass, there were 34 lines. I don’t like to see my blood go in to the little tubes.

I have my visual field appointment in the morning and I’m curious to see if my peripheral vision has changed since I last did it. I know my left eye wasn’t doing so hot last time. It felt really sad to not click when the line showed up on my left side.

But all in all, I’m looking forward to another week of trying to survive life. I hope you’re all doing well out there.

Star Wars: Ronin

Author: Emma Mieko Candon
Publisher: Del Rey
Genre: sci fi, fantasy
Rating: ⭐️⭐️/5


This one was exceptionally underwhelming. For a Star Wars book, I was hoping for a clean cut plot and action packed that tugged at my emotions. But I feel like I got none of that. Yes there was action, but it seemed so subdued. Plus I was pretty confused for a fair part of the book.

I would not recommend this book to anyone. Well, I wouldn’t, my husband might. He likes the Japanese influence in the story. I’m not a huge fan of it though it was described beautifully. Along those lines, I would not read it again either.

I felt like nothing was really resolved in this book. As a standalone, I’d like everything to kind of be resolved and everything back in its place. I want there to be a big change from beginning to end. The only thing to change was a planet came back and somehow even that was underwhelming. I have no idea how she did that, make an entire planet coming back so boring!

I just didn’t feel anything reading this. It was almost a DNF for me. What kept me from stopping? I was hoping it would get better. It never did. It gets one star for being different and that glimmer of hope that it would be exciting. The second star was for the beautiful description of the galaxy and everything in it. But that’s it.


2022 Reading Goal

Book #11 out of 50

2022 Reading Challenge

None

Diabetes and the Workplace

Here’s where you can know your rights in the workplace. Even with diabetes, we may still have the need to be in the workforce, whether it’s for employer-based health insurance or because we just need the money. But did you know diabetes can be considered a disability?

A disability is defined as a mental or physical impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities.

Diabetes is a disability because it substantially limits major life activities such as the functioning of the endocrine system.

What are my rights on the job?

As a person with a disability, you are protected from discrimination because of your diabetes. You will be protected under the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), a federal law that prohibits discrimination against qualified individuals with disabilities.

  • An employer cannot fail to hire or promote you because of your diabetes.
  • They cannot terminate you because of your diabetes (unless you pose a safety hazard).
  • They must provide you reasonable accommodations that help you perform the essential functions of your job.
  • They must not discriminate with regard to employer-provided health insurance.

You also have the right to medical leave to care for your diabetes. The Family and Medical Leave Act requires employers to provide up to 12 weeks of leave per year. This can be used for short term problems caused by managing your blood glucose levels or doctor appointments.

What are some accommodations I can request?

Remember these accommodations must be reasonable and not hinder the job description you were hired for. They may include, but are not limited to:

  • A private area to test your blood glucose levels or to administer insulin injections.
  • A place to rest until your blood glucose levels become normal.
  • Breaks to eat or drink, take medication, or test blood glucose levels.
  • Leave for treatment, recuperation, or training on managing diabetes (like diabetes education courses).
  • A modified work schedule or shift change.

To request an accommodation there is no magic words for it. Simply go to your employer and tell them what adjustments or changes are needed. This can also be done by someone else on your behalf, like your healthcare professionals.

What can employers do to help?

Employers can educate themselves on how to keep their employees healthy and maintain productivity. There are programs that can be provided through the employer-based health insurance too. They’re called the National Diabetes Prevention Program (National DPP) for people at risk of type 2 diabetes and Diabetes Self-Management, Education, and Support (DSMES) services for people diagnosed with diabetes.

The CDC has resources for employers to maintain healthy employees.

Please Note: These resources are for those living in the United States. I’m personally not too familiar with international resources but, hopefully, it shouldn’t be too hard to find. Look up the disability protection laws in your own country to see what protections may exist for you. Good luck!


References

American Diabetes Association
CDC
US EEOC
dQ&A
diaTribe

Type2diabetes.com

Mission

To empower patients and caregivers take control of their T2D by providing a platform to learn, educate, and connect with peers and healthcare professionals.

Type2diabetes.com

They provide the most accurate and relevant information on their blog. Their articles are contributed by physicians, patient advocates, and other healthcare experts. They encourage individuals touched by T2D to share their experiences with the community.

The website is brought to you by Health Union, LLC, an independent company that enables healthcare industry partners to reach and engage millions of people living with chronic conditions.

There are a number of topics including articles about mental health, T2D and COVID, as well as recipes. It’s another great source of information for diabetics to use.

Season Three: Episode Nine

MARCH 13, 2022

I have apparently gained two pounds since my last doctor visit on February 11. What a shame. I am currently 194 lbs. I’m a little disappointed in that since my lowest weight last year was 186lbs and since then it’s kind of gone up. It’s definitely because I’m eating more. I’ve been finding myself to be more hungry these past couple of months.

However, I have recently gone back to my job as a tour guide. We all got laid off when the pandemic started and now since our case numbers are lower, I feel a bit more comfortable to go back to work with them. It’s more active. I went on my first training tour on Friday and I walked over 8000 steps! I usually don’t walk more than 2000-3000 steps per day, 6000 when we’re doing the grocery shopping.

I can’t wait to get back to work with them. I really did love working for them and meeting new people from around the world. They’re kind of short staffed though which means I’ll be expected to do the longer tours that I didn’t do last time. But I’m looking forward to it.

I have my visual field eye appointment on the 21st. I’m hoping my visual field hasn’t changed too drastically since last year. I’ve never had to do that appointment until last year and I assume my diabetes is a bit of a concern for my eye doctor, which is totally understandable. I’m concerned too.

Please enjoy this picture I took while we were on tour at Hawaii Volcanoes National Park overlooking the glow of the lava lake in Halemaumau crater of Kilauea volcano.

I got the lab paperwork from my endocrinologist. I’ve got to do that a week before my appointment on April 7. Unfortunately, I won’t be able to let my ophthalmologist about my A1C as my eye appointment will be April 4. I’ll probably have to call them to update them on my newest A1C. I’m not looking forward to what it’ll be though.

And then my first dentist appointment in years will be on April 12. April is going to be a very active doctor appointment month. And I’m not looking forward to my A1C update nor am I looking forward to getting my blood taken. I hate needles!

Thankfully, the mask mandate for Hawaii should finally be lifted on March 26. At least I won’t have to wear a mask while I’m getting my blood taken and I think they’re also rolling back on social distancing and indoor max capacities. But I’m still a little scared about all of the rollbacks. I have lasted two years without getting COVID and I want to keep it that way.

Also the blog has reached 196 followers! I’m almost to 200 people who appreciate the information I share with them every week. I appreciate every single one of you always and forever. I love sharing my journey and the information I’m learning about diabetes with all of you.

If I can get to 300 followers, I will seriously consider trying to start a Patreon to help pay for the monthly and annual bills as well as bring more than just stickers to my blog shop. I’m thinking acrylic pins and window clings. Who knows really? It’s so exciting!

Thank you for each and every single one of you readers out there. Don’t forget to share my blog with your loved ones. And don’t forget that you are so loved and you matter, if not to the people in your life, then you are loved and matter to me. My inbox and DMs are always open, feel free to reach out if you need someone to talk to. I’ll be there.

14 Ways to Die

Author: Vincent Ralph
Publisher: Sourcebooks
Genre: young adult, thriller
Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️.5/5


Trope: Culprit Isn’t One of the Suspects
🛑 Warning: One of the characters attempts to commit suicide 🛑


Comparing this book to my previously reviewed, A Good Girl’s Guide to Murder by Holly Jackson, I think this one was more of a thriller to me. This one is less mystery and more knife-wielding murderer. I thoroughly enjoyed this book. I felt a lot of emotions while reading this book and the fact that the actual suspect was no where on my radar makes it a million times better for me.

I would definitely recommend this book to anyone who loves thrillers and young adult mysteries. It’s set in short, impactful chapters that keep the reader engaged and wanting to know what happens next.

I would definitely reread this book. It is going right in to my reread pile. I guess I should make a master list of the books I would definitely reread, although they’re all going to be 4+ star ratings so it’s a no-brainer this will be a reread.

I really did enjoy this style of writing with the short chapters. I almost didn’t put this book down the first day. It took me four days to read ONLY because I wanted to drag it out for as long as I could.

I really liked the concept of Jess trying to use the opportunity of a web show to try and solve her mother’s murder. Bringing light back to the serial killer and bringing all those who were left behind together to get their message out there. I was thoroughly invested in her story and wanting to find the killer.

I can kind of relate to Jess. I never lost a parent to a homicidal maniac, but I did lose my dad, unexpectedly to one of the many health conditions he suffered from. He was getting better, it seemed, and then one day, he was gone. It left a big gaping hole in my life. I was 19 when he died, so I at least got more time with my dad than Jess did with her mom. But I would give anything to know what really killed my dad. His death certificate just says “natural causes.” So many unanswered questions and I want to find the answers too.

I really enjoyed this book and I do look forward to rereading this one day. It has earned a spot on my shelf for good.


2022 Reading Goal

Book #10 out of 50

2022 Reading Challenge

None

Ruby Bridges

Does the name sound familiar? Do you remember the story of the little black girl who went to an all-white school and she had to walk through protests on the way to school every day? Let me enlighten you.


Born on September 8, 1954 in Mississippi to Lucille and Abon Bridges, Ruby Bridges would make history as the first African American student to integrate an elementary school in the South. Born in to poverty and the oldest of five children, she and her family would move to New Orleans in 1959.

The ruling of Brown v. The Board of Education of Topeka, Kansas would end racial segregation in public schools. However, southern states would continue to resist integration well in to the 21st century. The last school to desegregate was Cleveland High School in Cleveland, Mississippi in 2016.

In 1960, a federal court ordered Louisiana to desegregate. The school district the Bridges family was living in created entrance exams for African American students to see whether they could compete academically with their Caucasian counterparts.

That year, Ruby was one of only six students to pass the exam. She was the only one that would be attending the all-white school of William Frantz Elementary School. Her father had opposed to her attending an all-white school, but her mother was able to convince him to let her enroll.

Her first day of school was November 14, 1960. However, her first day was spent sitting in the principal’s office while white parents were withdrawing their children from the school. The next day, she was able to start her schooling in a class size of one with the only teacher in the whole school who was willing to teach her, Barbara Henry, a white Boston native. She ate lunch alone and played at recess alone, but never missed a day of school that year.

During this time, Ruby was seeing a child psychologist, Robert Coles, who studied the reaction of young children toward extreme stress or crisis. In 1995, he would write a children’s book called The Story of ruby Bridges.

Due to the amount of upset white people that protested Ruby’s enrollment in the school, she was assigned four federal marshals that would escort her and her mother to school every day that year. Every day, she would walk past crowds of white people screaming vicious slurs at her. Later in life, she said that the only time she was frightened was when she saw a woman holding a black baby doll in a coffin. The marshals would urge her to keep her eyes forward so she wouldn’t see the racist remarks on signs or the livid faces of the crowd.

The Bridges family suffered for their courage. Her father, Abon, lost his job and grocery stores would refuse to sell to her mother, Lucille. Even her grandparents were evicted from the farm where they had lived for a quarter-century.

The crowds outside the school would begin to thin toward the end of the year and by the following year the school enrolled several more black students. Many years later, her nieces would also attend William Frantz Elementary School.

“The Problem We All Face” (1963) Norman Rockwell

During Ruby’s second year at William Frantz Elementary, she no longer needed to be escorted by federal marshals. She walked to school on her own & was in a classroom with other students. Ruby had paved the way for other African American children.

Ruby would go on to graduate from a desegregated high school, become a travel agent, get married, and have four sons. In 1999, she established the Ruby Bridges Foundation to promote tolerance and create change through education. She would also write a couple of books including a children’s book called Ruby Bridges Goes to School: My True Story (2009).

Today, at 67-year-old Ruby Bridges continues to be an activist in racial equality. There are two schools named after her, and there is a statue at William Frantz Elementary School dedicated to her. She was a symbol of the civil rights movement in her youth and now she is actively fighting for racial equality. She is a pillar of where the United States of America has come from and where it could go on to in the future.


References

National Women’s History Museum
Ruby Bridges
Hilbert College
Britannica

Promises and Pomegranates

Author: Sav R. Miller
Publisher: Self
Genre: dark romance, novel
Rating: ⭐️⭐️⭐️/5


Spice Level: 🌶🌶🌶🌶/5 (Raunchy sexy time with dirty talking and kinks)


So in my opinion it was an okay book. But I mean I didn’t buy it for the story, you know what I mean? I liked how the book ended sure but let’s say I wasn’t paying attention to the story much. I saw someone talk about it on TikTok and I thought it would be an interesting read because I like the whole Persephone x Hades story, mostly because of Lore Olympus. However, this was like a reference that the characters are like Persephone and Hades. There may have been a few parallels between the two stories but not enough to really hook me in to the story so I settled for the spice. Which was kinky.

I wouldn’t recommend this book to Persephone x Hades enthusiasts nor would I recommend it to someone who’s in to spice unless you’re also in to kinks. Like blood and pain kinks. Which as it turns out, I’m not. So the two sells on this book for me were two total misses for me. But who knows, I’m not here to shame anyone on their kinks, these just weren’t mine.

I wouldn’t go out of my way to reread this. Some of the spice scenes were great but the story in between the spice was not very well laid out. It was a confusing storyline, it should have just been the two of them and them figuring out life together. Everything about her family was really sloppy so no I wouldn’t reread this one.

I enjoyed some of the writing in the spicy scenes but not so much everywhere else. There were a lot of plot holes in the actual story and I wasn’t sure what was going on with the blackmailing and everything. It was just very confusing.

Overall, it wasn’t a very great story but the spice was it’s saving grace (barely).


2022 Reading Goal

Book #9 out of 50

2022 Reading Challenge

None