Spring Has Finally Arrived

Winter in NH this year was very long, cold and snowy. At times I thought it would never end and indeed it did last into April. Just when we thought it was over we would get more snow and arctic air. This week we finally had some flowers blooming and lots of buds close to opening. The crocus are always the first to open and really for me signify that spring is finally here.

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It was such a tough winter that the deer decided to come into the yard. Most of the time they stayed away from the bushes but this lilac may not have quite as many flowers this year. They were hungry so I forgive them and it was fun to watch the does and their little ones.

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The temperatures have finally warmed and we are receiving a lot of April showers,. I hope this means lots of green and flowers very soon.

Happy Spring! Finally!

R

Book Review – The Fall Of The Governor Part Two

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A good trilogy of books has come to a close and I am sad to see the end. I just finished reading The Fall of the Governor Part Two by Robert Kirkman and Jay Bonansinga. In this last chapter in the Governor’s life, he and Rick Grimes meet again in the ultimate showdown. Neither one of the communities story ends happy as we know from the comics but the Governor pays the price with his life.

In the opening of the book the Governor is fighting for his life after his meeting with Michonne. Woodbury’s residents are kept in the dark on his condition while Lilly takes the reigns during his recovery. The Governor we see as he recovers is even darker than before and his only objective is finding the prison and getting revenge on Michonne and Rick.

The prison battle is brutal, walkers and humans, fighting it out with many casualties. Rick, during his escape loses his wife and baby by the gun of Lilly. Lilly seeing that she has killed a helpless woman and child loses all control and finally sees the Governor for the monster he has become.

The death of Phillip Blake, the Governor, is bittersweet for the inhabitants of Woodbury. In the end under Lilly’s leadership they hope to thrive in a new more peaceful environment. Well, peaceful as can be in a zombie apocalypse.

I have read that Kirkman plans on teaming up with Bonansinga for some more Walking Dead books. I hope that they will take on some new characters from the comics as well as continue the story of Lilly and the Woodbury survivors.

And on another note, I guess it will be a while before I have any new The Walking Dead posts as I have read all volumes of the comics as well as the books. The show will not return till October so I guess I will have to move on for now. Now to decide which book I will pick up next.

Happy Reading everyone.

R

The Walking Dead Season 4 Finale

First off, word of warning, this does contain spoilers if you have not watched it yet.

One word sums up Sunday night’s season finale of The Walking Dead – amazing. I mean wow, just when you didn’t think they would go that far on TV. Being a huge fan and having read the comics, there are many scenes you just assume that they could never pull off on TV.

In the opening we see Rick covered in blood leaning against a car, his hands shaking, staring off into the distance. He looks shell shocked. We later learn the reason for how Rick appears. The Claimers catch up with Rick and want to make him pay for killing their group member. In the comic it’s just an unknown group that attacks Rick, Carl and Eugene. In this case Daryl is with the Claimers and he comes upon his new group attacking Rick and Michonne while Carl is asleep in the car. Daryl ask Joe to leave them alone because they are good people. Joe, does not like Daryl sticking his neck out for his old friends and tells the other members to beat him to death. Carl is dragged out of the car as one of them attempts to assault him Rick snaps. Acting like a zombie himself he takes a bite out of Joe’s neck and Michonne and Daryl take advantage of the shocked group members to kill the rest except for one. Rick wants him, “He’s mine”. He proceeds to stab the man over and over.

The group eventually makes it to Terminus but they stash some weapons and go in the back so they can see the group first. They are obviously a little suspicious of other groups considering what occurred with the governor. And Terminus is of course not what it seems. Some of the group members are wearing and carrying items belonging to Glen and Maggie. When Rick turns on them and demands to know where they received the items all hell breaks loose. They are cornered and forced into a train car which it turns out also holds Maggie, Glen and their new group of friends.

The best part of the show and what will surely turn out to be one of the most memorable lines of the show comes from Rick when he says they are going to feel pretty stupid when they find out. They ask find out what, to which Rick replies “They’re screwing with the wrong people.” This is taken straight from the comic. It speaks a lot to the new Rick, one who is confident and will never just lie down and give up.

While we never learn what has happened to Beth and we still don’t know if Carol, Tyrese and Judith are headed to Terminus, the finale was a great wrap up to a great season. We have learned so much more about the characters and their past. I am glad we did not lose anyone during this finale but we can be guaranteed to lose more main characters during season five, there is no getting around it.

Now we have a long wait till October where we will have to occupy our time with the comic and hopefully some new books as well. And there is always seasons 1 – 3 on bluray to relive which I will surely be doing during our long, excruciating wait.

R

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Thoughts on The Walking Dead and Vol. 20

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This past week I received my copy of The Fall of the Governor Part 2 and Vol. 20 of the graphic novel. As usual Kirkman gives us another great volume to leave me wanting more. Just when you get into the on going battle the volume ends. I know it will be a while before the next one comes but I eagerly await it. Hopefully it will be during the long break we are about to have at the end of Season 4, which has only one more episode left.

Fall of the Governor is next up in my stack of reading. I’m wishing right now that I had not started another book  while waiting for it’s release. I just want to get right into reading about the Governor’s demise.

Speaking of Season 4, it has been an up and down roller coaster of emotion with the loss of Hershel and the downfall of the prison. But really nothing could have prepared me for what happened in Episode 414. To say it was shocking would be an understatement, but you must also add depressing as a good descriptor. Carol is an interesting character, she does what needs to be done in order to protect the people closest to her and of course herself. What happened in this episode, I would not suspected Carol even to be capable of, but as much as it is depressing I understand her actions. Could I ever survive in these situations? I am not really sure I would have what it takes to make those kinds of decisions and carryout those kinds of actions. We can all breathe a sigh of relief that Carol came clean with Tyrese and that he forgave her for her actions. I really enjoyed his character on the show now that he has manned up and become more like his comic character.

In Episode 415 we finally get to see Terminus and I have to tell you it does not give me a good feeling. Any place that leaves it’s doors open for anyone to walk in, might not be the place for them. I will say having read the comics makes me have an even more ominous feeling about the place.

As much as I am looking forward to the season finale I am dreading the extremely long break we will have till season 5. I mean really, can’t they just work year round for us, to keep us entertained.

R

A Six Year Old’s Dream

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When I was six years old I wanted to be an archaeologist. I don’t even know if I knew that word at the time but I knew what they did and that is what I wanted to do as well.

I received my new issue of National Geographic and one of the stories is Digging up a Roman Boat. National Geographic is the only magazine I will read cover to cover, it’s just amazing from the photos to the writing. I remember as a child picking up my parents issues and even though I could not read it at the time the pictures left a lasting impression. I remember the pictures of King Tut in his sarcophagus, the people of Pompeii frozen in time by ash, and the great pyramids rising from the desert. To this day I still dream of visiting these places, seeing the sites and pondering on what life was like back in those ancient times.

Did you have a childhood dream that sticks with you to this day?

R

Book Review – Lake Como

I received the new book in the Governor series of The Walking Dead books, I have already read part one and am looking forward to digging into part two. Because I had to wait a few weeks in between the time I finished one and the other was released I picked up another book. A friend had passed on Lake Como by Anita Hughes to everyone she knew because she loved it so much. Now I realize this could not be more different then the last book I read and reviewed but hey, that’s just the way I roll.

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Lake Como first introduces us to Hallie, she’s attending all the big weddings of San Francisco elite with her boyfriend Peter. She is working for a demanding Interior Designer Kendra who is also attending these weddings in hopes of new clients. At one of the weddings Hallie finds Peter and Kendra in a very compromising situation. Hallie decides to go see her half sister Portia in Italy to get away and clear her head. Portia is in need of help after she finds her husband cheating on her and leaves him. In Italy, Hallie meets new people and lands a designing job for an American tech mogul. She eventually learns secrets about her family that lead to her decision to stay in Italy to the dismay of her mother and grandmother.

The writing in this book is good, and the descriptions of the lake and all it’s beauty definitely makes me want to go there someday. The descriptions of the grand parties and all the beautiful and luxurious clothing are wonderful. It makes one want to go out and purchase a new wardrobe of Gucci and Prada, if one could afford it. But really this book is about forgiveness, moving on with life and finding what makes you the happiest.

I would definitely recommend this book and hope to read some more Anita Hughes. Of course that means getting through my ridiculously large stack of books and kindle reads first.

Happy Reading.

R

Maple Syrup Season

Three years in a row now we have been tapping the maple trees on our property to produce maple syrup. We do it to get just enough for us and to give a few bottles away. This year started later than usual because of our ridiculously cold weather. It’s March and we have had nights close to zero and days barely above 20 degrees. We really need it to be below freezing at night and above freezing during the day to get the sap running. This year we tapped 20 trees and we boiled down approximately 18 gallons. We now have around 50 ounces of yummy maple syrup.

First step of course is tapping the trees which then need to be checked on a daily basis.

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We fill up a bucket and bring it home to filter it before refrigeration.

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Our boiling pan holds 5 gallons of sap so we wait until we have a bunch in the fridge, then the real fun begins.

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It’s a long process but it’s worth the wait.

Once the sap is boiled down we filter again and put in jars to store in the fridge.

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The finished product is so yummy, better than anything you can buy at the grocery store.

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Happy First day of Spring.

R