Sunday, 30 December 2018

Under The Dome by Stephen King

According to the author’s note at the end of Under The Dome, Stephen King explains, ‘I tried to write a book that would keep the pedal consistently to the metal.’ He certainly wasn’t joking. 

Photo source: Google

Under the Dome was published in 2009. King first attempted to tell this story in 1976 but he only managed about 75 pages in a couple of weeks. He explains, ‘I crept away from it with my tail between my legs.’ King didn’t abandon the story because of the enormous cast of characters, but due to the technical problems the story presented. He tackled it again in 2007, with the help of Russ Dorr as head of research. Russ had previously helped him on The Stand and several other books. 

Under the Dome is set in a small town in Maine (as are several of King’s books). Chester’s Mill is an average town, going about its business as usual when an invisible barrier descends over it. The residents aren’t completely cut off from the outside world, but nobody can leave or enter the town. This situation brings out the best and worst in certain townspeople and pinpoints what some individuals will do when total power is obtained and threat of punishment is no longer an issue. 
A battle for power between good and evil ensues. The good guys are led by former Army Captain Dale ‘Barbie’ Barbara who was intending to leave town on the day of the dome’s appearance. His main ally is Julia Shumway, editor of the local paper. Barbie reluctantly takes on the role of government liaison to Colonel James Cox. Cox is trying to keep the town under control from outside the dome. Barbie is also given authority over the township by The President. 
‘Big Jim’ Rennie has other ideas. Rennie is a used car salesman and the Second Selectman of the town. After the First Selectman dies, Big Jim sees an opportunity to take over the town for himself.  Consequently, he appoints his son and his son’s friends as police and uses them to help him control the residents of Chester’s Mill. 
As this battle between the two continues, the rest of the townspeople begin to take sides. Unfortunately, due to the stress of the situation and dwindling resources, the majority of residents go along with what is happening out of blind fear. Meanwhile, something strange is happening to the children of Chester’s Mill. 
Under the Dome is an epic page-turner. It’s not the usual Stephen King horror story, the horror here isn’t in the gory details, but in how far regular people will go in order to survive and protect what they believe in.     

Friday, 28 December 2018

An Emotional Christmas

I hope you all had a wonderful Christmas or if you don't celebrate Christmas, a happy holiday.

Our Christmas has been a mixed bag of emotions. My sister's partner passed away after a long illness about a week before Christmas. At least he is no longer in pain.

Here's a pic of the family celebrating Christmas before he became ill. Left to right - Whitesnake, KB, Sister, Sister's partner, Dad. Mum took the photo.

A couple of day's later was the first anniversary of our sweet dog's passing. She was my baby and I miss the little angel dearly.

Coco: Photo source - KB

Our Christmas was full of love, good food, wine, Christmas movies and presents. Luckily for me, my husband loves to cook.

Orange And Lemon Cake Recipe

Love KB

Tuesday, 11 December 2018

Merry Christmas

Photo source: Pixabay

Early to bed
Anticipate the dawn
No thoughts of our Saviour
Or the day he was born

Tossing and turning
No sleep to be had
Excitement is growing
Driving me mad

Peer through the curtains
Searching the sky
Hoping perchance
To see him fly by

Squeals of delight
He surely has been
Little sis impatient
To share what she's seen

Skip through the kitchen
Crumbs left on his plate
Gifts galore surprise me
Santa was definitely worth the wait

I'm taking a blogging break while I celebrate the holidays. Have a wonderful time, stay safe and I will see you again in the New Year.

Love KB

Shared with Tuesday Platform and Poetry Pantry

Thursday, 6 December 2018

Summer Not Found

This week in New Zealand we have experienced thunder, lightening, heavy rain, hail, strong winds and sunshine. It's difficult to believe that it's a couple of weeks until summer time. 

Photo source: KB

Photo source: Twitter

This post has been shared with Skywatch 

Love KB

Monday, 3 December 2018


As I was perusing my favourite blogs earlier, I noticed a challenge over at real toads to write a flash 55 to keep the memory of our dear friend Galen alive. Galen originally hosted this fun challenge and his posts and comments made me laugh so much. I decided to repost this 55 which I wrote over ten years ago and if you read the comments you will see G-Man being his amusing self. If I remember correctly, his 55 was regarding toilet humour that week. Miss you buddy.

P.S. This poem was written about my husband. We met, he went back to Australia, he came back, we got's complicated, hehe.

When you're away my life feels wrong.
My only company wine and song.
I count down the days until you return.
The art of patience, something to learn.

When we're together the time flies.
Love and laughter, mischief in our eyes.
Nobody understands me, like you do.
Sometimes I believe we are one, not two.

Photo source: Pixabay 


Flash Fiction - Every Friday, I compose a short story of 55 words - no more, no less. If you would like to join in the fun and games... post your story and report to the boss -
If you're not interested in contributing a story, feel free to read the other entries. I'm sure any comments you have would be appreciated.

Happy reading and writing!

Thursday, 29 November 2018

Auckland Botanic Gardens

Hi everyone,

I attended a meeting at Auckland Botanic Gardens and was surprised how close this gorgeous place was to my home. I'll definitely be going back with my camera to photograph the beautiful gardens.

Photo source: KB

Not a cloud to be seen in this beautiful SkyWatch Friday.

Have a great weekend.

Love KB

Saturday, 24 November 2018

Poetry: Together

A poem for my husband (Whitesnake) on his birthday. 

Dreams of you
and me together.
Souls entwined,
for now and ever.

Candles lit,
music playing.
Red wine flowing,
bodies swaying.

Probing tongues,
exploring mouths.
Hands and fingers,
heading south.

Clothes are falling,
skin exposed.
Senses awakening,
from head to toes.

Lost in each other,
bodies entwined.
I am yours,
you are mine.

I remember writing this during a period of my life when Whitesnake and I were apart; but we had decided that we wanted to be with each other again at any cost.  It was complicated! We've been together now for ten years and it's the best decision I ever made.

Happy Birthday my love


Monday, 19 November 2018

Poetry: Sleep

S ensuous slumber
L ost to the world
E nveloped in blankets
E motionally quiet
P eace at last

Photo Source: Pixabay

Acrostic poem shared with Poetry Pantry and Tuesday Platform

Love KB

Saturday, 17 November 2018

Getting Back On The Horse

Recently, I’ve been thinking about my childhood passion. Horses appealed to me from a young age; consequently my parents kindly signed me up for riding lessons when I was a child. Horse riding continued to be a passion until I was about 13 years of age, spending time after lessons at the stables.  Frequently taking care of the unappealing but necessary jobs. Climbing up the horse manure pile and jumping up and down on it to flatten it on a regular basis. Often, the pile was enormous and I'd return home smelling terrible, to my mum's disgust. 

KB's First Riding Lesson

Horse riding was an escape from the world. I found the speed, exhilarating, knowing when to let the horse go and when he needed reining in. The connection you can build with a horse can be amazing.

One beautiful, summer day I rode my favourite horse, Count.  Often high strung but I'd always been able to handle him. Something spooked him and I could feel myself losing control. Galloping towards the road was terrifying because there was nothing I could do but hold on. Count raced across two lanes of traffic before coming to an abrupt stop in front of a red convertible; I can still picture the driver’s face. The driver shook his fist and swore several obscenities at me. I don't blame him as it would have been a shock to see a horse coming out of nowhere.

After I finally calmed down, I said to myself, 'just give yourself a few weeks and you can get back on the horse'. Two years later, a family member surprised me with a riding lesson.  

Lesson day arrived; I was terrified until I saw my pony. He was more like a stubborn old mule really. Everything was going fabulously, I felt confident, and so we decided to try a couple of small jumps. 'This will be fun,' I thought but the stubborn old nag had other ideas.  Pulling up short before the jump; I flew over the top and landed on my head.

Consequently, I was finished with the horses, but lately I’ve been thinking of riding again. Even if it's just the once, so I can say I got back on the horse.

Post bumped up to share with Saturday Critters

Love KB

Thursday, 15 November 2018

There's Something About Mary

Today we had a visit from the daughter of our ex neighbour Mary. Mary moved into a retirement home a couple of years ago after she collapsed in her driveway and broke her hip. Luckily  Whitesnake was home that day and went to her rescue. Mary is now 95 years young and enjoying life in her new home. We miss seeing her pottering around in her garden and are looking forward to catching up with her in a couple of weeks time 

This beautiful night sky has been shared with Skywatch Friday

Have a great day

Love KB


Tuesday, 13 November 2018

Pretty Mess - Erika Jayne

Shared with Teaser Tuesday and First Chapter First Paragraph Tuesday Intros. Please feel free to play along.

Here's my teaser:

There's a fine line between keeping kids totally in the dark and telling them the adult truth. I do't think she got the balance right, and she erred on the side of telling me more than I could handle.

Photo source: Google

First paragraph:

I made my stage debut at the age of five. I was in the St. John The Baptist Kindergarten production of Mrs. Jingle B. It was a Christmas pageant with singing that sounded more like screaming in unison. The dancing looked like a bunch of drunk bunny rabbits trying to find their way home after a bender.

There is a new post regarding my health and wellness journey too...

An Insightful CBT Session

Love KB

Thursday, 8 November 2018

Poetry: Message In A Bottle

Photo Source: Pixabay

Message in a bottle
Swept away by the sea
Secrets held within
Dreams of you and me

Message in a bottle
Tossed to and fro
Emotions hidden inside
Ensnared, nowhere to go

Message in a bottle
Washed up on the shore
Waiting to be found
Love lost no more

Message in a bottle
Read and set free
Never to be trapped again
Our dreams of you and me

Shared with Poetry Pantry and Tuesday Platform

Wednesday, 7 November 2018

Teaser Tuesday - The Outsider by Stephen King

Teaser Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by The Purple Booker. Please feel free to play along.

• Grab your current read
• Open to a random page
• Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
• BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
• Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers! Everyone loves Teaser Tuesday• Grab your current read

Here's my teaser: 

"How did I get back upstairs?"Jeannie asked. "Did he...please tell me he didn't carry me after I passed out."

Author: Stephen King

Title: The Outsider 

I'm reading the same book as last week but it does have many pages. A real spooky read!

Happy reading

Love KB

Friday, 2 November 2018

Acrostic Poetry - Tradition

Going to the beach for the Christmas holidays is a popular tradition in New Zealand.

Photo source: Pixabay

Toes in the sand

Restless minds begin to calm

Another lazy day

Diving into the ocean

Imagination abounds

Toasted marshmallows

Intoxicating moonlight

Open fire to dance around

Nourishment for the soul

Shared with Poetry Pantry

Have a fantastic weekend my friends

Love KB

Thursday, 1 November 2018

Poetry: Follow Your Dreams

Photo source: Pixabay

Only in our dreams
That’s how we used to meet
Our partners beat us down
Surviving them quite a feat

They tossed our dreams aside
Such stupid goals to make
Said their ways were better
But they came across as fake

Now we are together
Our dreams each day unfold
Never forget your dreams
No matter what you’re told

This poem is shared with Tuesday's Platform

Tuesday, 30 October 2018

Tips For Making The Perfect Marriage Proposal

The key to making the perfect romantic proposal is designing it to fit you and your partner’s tastes.

Organizing a message to be displayed on an enormous message board at a sports game is probably not the best way to propose to a partner who is embarrassed easily. Perhaps a discreet setting would be more appropriate.

Read on to discover tips for making the perfect romantic proposal to your loved one.

Photo source: Pixabay

Tried and true

A popular way to propose marriage is during a meal at a romantic restaurant. If you feel your partner would appreciate this type of proposal, take some time to consider the details which will create a unique and special experience for both of you. Choose a special restaurant, perhaps where you went for your first date, or somewhere you’ve both wanted to try. Be sure to advise the restaurant of your special event and check the date you have booked doesn’t clash with a noisy event. It’s also useful to ensure your partner is aware you are going out for a dinner at a special place so attire can be appropriate. A surprise proposal after your partner has just arrived straight from work before a shower and a change of clothes, may not be appreciated.

A home-cooked dinner can be another romantic event to present a proposal, especially if your partner ordinarily does the cooking. Just because you are at home, doesn’t mean you shouldn’t put in any extra effort. Ensure the home is clean and tidy, advise family and friends that you are not to be disturbed and turn your mobile phones off. Run your partner a bath or pour a glass of wine so he/she can relax while you cook the dinner.

Be creative

Practice how you are going to word your proposal. If you're a person of few words, keep it short, but try to add something personal and unique that relates to your relationship.If you are a creative type, using your creativity to propose will make it extra special and memorable. Consider writing your proposal in the sand at the beach, creating a poem or a song for your loved one or designing a special painting or card.

Recreate a special event

Recreating a special event you have previously experienced together is a romantic lead up to a marriage proposal. You can take this idea a step further by organizing a tour of special places or events that are important to your relationship. Ending the tour at a new location and proposing marriage there, can be a surprise ending to the tour.

Keep it simple

Often, the simplest proposals are the best. Wrapping the ring in increasingly bigger parcels or boxes is an easy and fun way to do this. If starry nights or rainbows are special to the couple, propose next time there is one on display. Another simple yet romantic way to propose is to leave notes around the house with clues which lead to the engagement ring.

A proposal of marriage is a serious commitment, making it romantic and perfect will ensure it is an event to be treasured and remembered for many years to come.

Teaser Tuesday - The Outsider by Stephen King

Teaser Tuesday is a weekly meme hosted by The Purple Booker. Please feel free to play along.

• Grab your current read
• Open to a random page
• Share two (2) “teaser” sentences from somewhere on that page
• BE CAREFUL NOT TO INCLUDE SPOILERS! (make sure that what you share doesn’t give too much away! You don’t want to ruin the book for others!)
• Share the title & author, too, so that other TT participants can add the book to their TBR Lists if they like your teasers! Everyone loves Teaser Tuesday• Grab your current read

Here's my teaser: 

Jack didn't know how long he stood there, unable to move. The person - or the thing-stood behind him, its shadow long and thin. 

Author: Stephen King

Title: The Outsider 

It's a spooky one for sure and even though I'm over half way through, I still can't figure out who done it. Love it!

Happy reading

Love KB

Wednesday, 24 October 2018

An Emotional Year

This year has been an emotional one, but I didn't realise how depressed I'd become until I started feeling healthy again.

A couple of years ago, our darling dog became seriously ill and although she recovered, she remained unwell repeatedly until she died just before Christmas last year. Whitesnake and I were devastated. Dear Coco was no longer in pain, but the experience put a damper on our favourite time of the year.

Linked to Camera Critters and Saturday's Critters

Shortly after, I received news that my iron levels were too low and underwent a pelvic ultrasound  to confirm the diagnosis. Thankfully, a change of contraception fixed the problem and my iron levels are slowly increasing 

An enormous accomplishment for me this year was remaining alcohol free for two months. Health wise my blood pressure is lower, I've lost 3 kg and at the time I was sleeping amazingly well. I am hoping to achieve this goal again next month before the silly season begins.

My retina detached in March, leading to my first operation ever! This was quite a frightening experience. Not the surgery, but the fact that I could have gone blind. Retinal detachment surgery recovery has been successful, but my eyesight is understandably worse in the affected eye than before. I'll be heading to the optometrist soon for new glasses.  

A couple of years ago, I found myself a new job. The first year I loved, but I found that being better at my job, equalled more responsibility and work . Add to that several 30 hour weeks I covered for my colleague as she took holidays and sick leave and the meetings I needed to attend. A fun part-time job became a great deal of extra hours and work. I convinced myself I was still enjoying my job until I had a massive panic attack there which forced me to reassess my feelings. A shame because my bosses were great and the location not too far away, but I decided it was time to put my health and my family first.

Finally this blog is up to date again. Thanks to the support of my wonderful husband and doctor, I'm feeling like myself again and that makes me happy. 

Love KB

Sunday, 8 July 2018

Original Ways To Propose Marriage

A thoughtful, romantic marriage proposal is to be treasured. It’s important before deciding how to propose, to consider the personality and feelings of the other person. Proposing to a loved one who is scared of heights, after skydiving is probably not a good idea. A private person would probably prefer to be proposed to one-on-one, rather than in front of a huge group of strangers in a football stadium.

Photo source: Pixabay

Here are some original ways to propose marriage:

One on one 

Recreating a special moment previously shared by two people who are in love, is a wonderful way to propose marriage. Taking this idea a step further, taking a partner to revisit milestones of the relationship and then ending in a place never visited before is fun. Proposing in this new location will be the next milestone to be reached and will add a lovely surprise to the end of the tour.

In the company of others 

Throwing a party with friends and family is a great idea, as the proposal and the engagement can be celebrated at the same time. Including children from previous relationships in a proposal is a wonderful idea because it makes the child feel part of this new relationship. Another lovely way to present a partner with a ring is to attach it to the collar of a beloved pet. After time apart, picking up a loved one from the airport is always appreciated. It’s twice as nice if accompanied by a ‘Will you marry me?’ sign. 

In writing 

There are many creative ways to propose in writing such as in the sand on a beautiful beach, in the snow on a deserted mountain top, a heartfelt poem written by hand on beautiful stationary or a handwritten letter posted via mail. To build a little more anticipation, send four balloons, roses or cupcakes, an hour apart with each item having one word of the phrase –‘ Will you marry me?’ written on them.  Starting a website or journal and including stories of how the couple met and important aspects of time spent together with a proposal at the end, is a lovely way to record the romance and include the proposal.

Keeping it simple 

Often, the simplest proposals are the best. Wrapping the ring in increasingly bigger boxes or parcels is an easy and fun way to do this. If rainbows or starry nights mean something special to the couple, propose next time there is one on display. Another simple way is to leave notes around the house with clues that lead to the engagement ring. 

There are many ways to propose marriage, but with a little thought and imagination, a proposal can truly become a wonderful way for two people to begin a new life together. 

Saturday, 7 July 2018

How To Tell If Your Spouse Is Cheating

It’s often difficult to pinpoint why a person thinks a spouse is cheating, it may be based on a feeling of something not being quite the same as it was. A spouse may slowly begin to change behaviours which don’t stand out alone, but when combined together, may reveal a cheating spouse.
Here are a few signs that a spouse may be cheating:

Time apart

Cheating takes time and effort, therefore a spouse who is cheating will need to be away from the marriage partner more than in the past. This may involve such excuses as staying late at work, going out with friends, taking up a new pastime or needing time to be alone.

Being secretive

Being secretive is part of a cheater’s new skill set. Secretive behaviours may include talking quietly on the phone, hanging up the phone when a spouse enters the room, unexplained charges on credit cards, spending more time on the computer and keeping the screen hidden. When asked for the reasons for these changes in patterns, a cheater will easily come up with a plausible excuse and probably try to make the questioning spouse feel guilty for asking.

Withdrawing or overcompensating

There is a lot of guilt involved with cheating. A cheater may overcompensate for cheating by paying more attention to a spouse or go in the complete opposite direction by withdrawing completely. A cheating spouse may often flip between both of these behaviours, causing confusing unexplained mood changes.

A new best friend

When a spouse is finding it difficult to communicate or connect with a marriage partner, they will often turn to another to confide in. Talking is a great way to solve problems, but when a spouse is talking to a new ‘best friend’ instead of the person they are married to, it can become a problem. How many times has the expression, ‘Oh, we’re just friends.’ been used only later to be proved false due to an exposed affair?
Any relationship needs a level of trust to survive. If a spouse is showing combinations of the above signs and their partner's gut feeling is that cheating is involved, this may indeed be the case. However, the above could also be signs of many other problems such as work stress or health issues. If a relationship with a spouse is causing concern, communication is the key to working through these problems. The first step is to sit down and talk about how both parties are feeling and take it from there. Hopefully, cheating isn’t the cause and you can both work through whatever it is.

Photo source: Pixabay

Saturday, 23 June 2018

What to expect from your first cruise

Photo source: Pixabay

There is nothing quite like waking up to one beautiful location after another on your first cruise. First time cruisers will be amazed at the size of the ship and the facilities on board.
The check in procedure is much faster and hassle free compared to standing in line for hours to take a plane journey. Once you are on board, you will be greeted by friendly staff who will show you to your cabin. You will have plenty of time to explore the delights of the ship or perhaps share a beverage or meal with some of your fellow passengers before setting out to sea.
Ships vary, but most include a banquet room, casino, library, gym, bars, lounges, swimming and spa pools. In fact, there is so much to do that you may not want to leave the ship. Moist cruises on the big liners host dinner and a show each night, including a couple of formal dinners where you can dress up and meet the Captain and crew. If this is not for you; many other more casual style dining options are available, including room service. You can then party the night away in the many pubs and clubs or head to your room for a movie and some quiet time.
A wide range of activities are planned for adults and children during the days at sea. When you reach your exotic destination you can choose to stay on board or explore the main land. In some cases you can straight onto your destination from the ship and if not, boats are provided at regular intervals to and from the cruise ship. Many tours are available for you to take part in and can be arranged prior to reaching your destinations.
One of the great things about a cruise is the availability of refreshments. You could eat all day and most of the night if you wanted to. Buffet style is more prominent during the day, but other options are on offer most of the waking hours.
Often, travellers are put off cruising by the idea of sea sickness. Remedies are available for this on board and of course, a doctor is available 24 hours a day for emergencies. If you are looking for excitement, variety, friendly staff and value for money; give cruising a try. You'll love it.

Thursday, 21 June 2018

Poetry: Wasted Time

Tick, tock, tick, tock
How do I make the ticking stop?
There aren't enough hours in the day
Most of them spent dreaming away

Tick, tock, tick, tock
Back to the chores, where's my mop?
Hands move slowly, a waiting game
Days passing, remaining the same

Tick, tock, tick, tock
Do I hear his key turning the lock?
Supper's eaten, time to unwind
A busy day of wasted time

Sunday, 17 June 2018

Poetry - Childhood dreams

A poem I wrote many years ago...

Photo source: Pixabay

When I was a little girl
I though I could rule the world
What happened to my childhood dreams
They disappeared, or so it seems

Looking back through the years
It's hard to see when she disappeared
Do I have the courage to start again
Will there be joy or only pain

I feel like I am still that girl
Hidden in a shell like a treasured pearl
If I could open her heart again
I know our dreams would be the same

When we look back in years to come
Will she like what I've become
Or will I still be the little girl
Who wished that she had changed her world

Sunday, 3 June 2018

I'm Back

Wow, it's been so long since I have posted and such a lot has happened!

In no particular order...

Our darling Coco passed away after a tough couple of years of illness.

I turned 50.

My retina detached but is back where it should be.

I was alcohol free for two months.

I lost 3 KG

I headed back to work after a ten year break.

Wow, that is a lot. I intend to post more frequently to this neglected blog and I've missed you guys.

Love KB