Posted by: bree1972 | February 23, 2012

Catching Up 2/24/2012

Since we went out of town for a few days, and I wrote about the beach trip on Wednesday, I need to catch you up on some other topics that have been on the back burner for a week or so.

1)  Valentine’s Day Dinner.  Our annual dinner at Daphne’s with friends on Valentine’s Day is something we look forward to every year.  It occurred to me I hadn’t eaten fried catfish since we’ve been back in Georgia, so that’s what I ordered, and were they ever delicious!

You can barely see Cecil and Marianne on the left, then there's Ed and Sally, and Samille and Ralph.

The other side of the table - Ted, Dawn and Stevie, and Karen and Gary. Wow! Even the guys were decked out in red!

The "Biggest Laugh of the Evening" Award went to Ed's version of a box of chocolates for Sally. Don't know how long this had been in Ed's car (maybe a couple of summers), but all the girls decided Sally should get diamonds as a "make up" gift - and SOON!

2)  Play Plans.  The first Sunday in March Ted and I are going to Perry to watch friend Jane Winston (a Georgia winter resident and summer Mackinac Island resident) star in the Perry Players’ “Sex Please, We’re Sixty”.  Jane says it is a “hoot”, and we can’t wait to see her in the role of the very strait-laced and regimented owner of Rose Cottage, a fictional bed and breakfast.  According to Jane, the escapades of the inn’s customers (all in their 60’s and single) make for a lot of laugh-out-loud moments during the play’s two acts.  More on that after the play!

3)  Another Trip.  We’re going back to Florida about a week from now to visit Julie, Matt, and precious Jordan and Matthew in Ormond Beach.  It just so happens that our stay will be during the 71st annual “World Largest Mortorcycle Event” – BIKE WEEK at Daytona Beach (only a few miles south of Ormond).  Over half a million people converge on Daytona each year for this celebration, which features live bands, motorcycle stunt shows, food, and bikers, bikers, bikers!  Now, I’ve never been a motorcycle enthusiast.  And yes, I have ridden one – in my much younger days (well, it was less like riding and more like holding on for dear life).  But I sure bet this will be a sight to behold, and I can’t wait to capture it all on camera for my readers!

A scene from the 2011 Bike Week in Daytona Beach, FL

4)  Here We Go Again.  Do you remember when we updated the condo in Michigan?  Do you remember when we painted the house on the lake?  Do you remember that we had to replace all our window sills when we first got back to Georgia this year?  Do you remember how stressed out and crazy I was during those times?  Well, here we go again.  Ted has been researching and measuring for weeks, and we’ve had a few weeks of “spirited” conversations about flooring, countertops, lighting, and kitchen countertops.  I think when this final lake house renovation is finished, we will have finally turned our little “fishing shack” into the home we imagined when we first bought it.  More on all that as we move forward.

5)  Kindles, Nooks & Books – A question.  I’m seriously thinking about purchasing either a Kindle or a Nook, and I need your input.  I know there are several kinds of each, but I don’t know enough about any of them to make an informed decision.  If you have either, could you give me your opinion?  I’ve fought buying a reading device for over a year now because I love holding a book, sharing a book, and heck, I even love the smell of a book.  Also, I want to always support bookstores, especially independent ones (like The Island Bookstore).  But occasionally, and this has happened a few times now, someone has suggested a book, and it would only available as a Kindle edition.  Anyway, if you have either a Kindle or a Nook, please tell me what you like about it, and maybe I can make a good decision on which one to buy.

I believe that about covers all the Horton news for now.  Hope everyone has a great weekend!

God bless.



  1. I don’t know about Nooks, Kindles, or other tablets but my college friend’s “techy” husband hightly recommended the Kindle Fire.

  2. First I just want to say how nice everyone looked for Valentine’s dinner. I’m sure everyone had a great time by the smiles on their faces. Jane’s play sounds like so much fun! I bet it will be a laugh a minute. Just the title makes me smile. 😉 Well, I just learned something new. I never knew that they had a bike week in Florida. I thought there was only one and it was in Sturgess? I asked Bud and he said there was 2, one in Sturgess and one in Florida…shows what I know. I don’t like the stress you have to go through BUT I do like the before and after stories and pictures of your renovations and as far as a Kindle or a Nook, I have neither and don’t know much about them so I can’t give you any ideas. Sorry 😦

  3. I can’t help you with the Nook or Kindle decision but I do have a book to add to your reading list. Well maybe two titles. The first if The Color of Rain bu Michael and Gina Spehn. It is about two families (from Michigan) and their dealing with sickness, death and recovery. The other is a fiction book by Kristin Hannah called Home Front. It deals with a family and the war in Iraq. I will admit that tho it is fiction I found myself crying because I realize how true the story is for those who serve this country.
    Enjoy your trip to bike week.

    • Thanks for the book suggestions, Charlotte. I’ve jotted down the titles to check out. I’m reading John Grisham’s latest, The Litigators, and it is a good one.

      • Ooo, the new Grisham is good? I almost bought it the other day but I was kind of disappointed in the last couple of ones. I will have to get it next time. thanks for the tip!

      • I know, Laurie. I’ve been disappointed with him lately also. But this one feels more like some of his earlier works. About half-way through, and so far I’m liking it.

  4. Every year I talk about how much fun our valentine`s night out was but this year was THE BEST thanks to Ed aka Mr. Valentine; that`s his new name for now. Sally needs some really big diamonds to make up for his pho pa this year. (Hope that`s spelled right) I have woke up at night laughing about that box of candy and the “special” card he prepaired. He really went all out this year.

  5. Jeff gave me a Kindle Fire for Christmas. I love it! Best of all is that it is in color for your magazines. My first book was “When A Crocodile Eats the Sun”, a true story about growing up in war torn Zimbabwe by reporter Peter Godwin. Very moving.

    • Have never heard that title, Marty. Will look into it. BTW – see you Saturday at 2:30!

  6. Hi Brenda..great post by the good to hear what you and Ted have been up to. We hear from Alyssa that she is having a great winter on the Island but they would really like more snow!! 🙂 Fred got me a Kindle Fire for Christmas and I absolutely LOVE it..I was one of those that always said I didn’t want one because like you I loved holding books in my hands…but…I have to admit I am really enjoying my Kindle and it’s so convenient and I have “oodles” of books on it to read that were free!! I have even downloaded some from our local library and it’s saved me a bundle not having to buy books!! I have several friends with Kindle Fires and they all love them..just my two cents worth!! Looking forward to hearing about your renovations at the lake!! God Bless!!

  7. Well, I don’t know about the Kindle Fires or Nook either. I do know that I am like you, Brenda. I love the feel of the book in my hand and I don’t believe I will ever go out and get the Kindle or the Nook.

    On the other hand, my father did get a Kindle a few years ago as a Christmas gift and he does love his Kindle.

    I do have a book to recommend to you, if no has recommended it as of yet. I just finished it and it was great. The latest Stephen King novel “11/22/63”. No it is not a gory story that you would think of that Stephen King usually is associated. It’s 849 pages and once I started reading, I just wanted to keep on reading to find out what happened. (Oh, by the way, you can pick this up as a book.)

    • I’ve read great reviews for this Stephen King book, Judi. Wow! I’ve got a lot of reading to do.

  8. Brenda, my mother got a Pandigital Super Nova for Christmas and she’s like you: she prefers to hold the book in her hand. She was SO not into digial readers that I inherited the e-reader and tried to work with it. It worked best with B&N Nook applications.

    The Super Nova was designed to be a knock-off version of the iPad with cameras in front and back, all sorts of Android programs, a cell telephone, etc, etc, etc. IOW, way too much for what I wanted to do: read books. After the second time it ran out of battery because it kept looking for a signal (I don’t have Wi-Fi), I gave up on it, bought a Kindle Touch and haven’t looked back.

    The Kindle Fire is the hot gadget right now. It’s in color and you can read magazines and newspapers on it as well as all sorts of other bells and whistles like games, movies, etc. For me, I’ve been there, done that, didn’t want all that stuff.

    The Kindle Touch was a better fit for me because it’s just for books and has a free 3G network that allows me to line up my books with my Amazon account and download them en masse when I turn the wireless on (which gets turned back off after I’ve downloaded to save the battery). I don’t have to go find a Wi-Fi spot to get my books; anywhere there’s a cell phone signal I can get my books. Downloads take anywhere between 30 seconds to a minute or a minute and 1/2 depending on how big the book is.

    I charged the battery two weeks ago, have used it for at least an hour every day and I still have 1/2 a battery charge left. This delighted me because the Super Nova would run down after a day or so of hunting for a signal. (I couldn’t find any way of disabling that stupid Android)

    The Kindle Touch is only in black and white, so if you’re used to color on your pages you may miss that. The way I see it, books are supposed to be in black and white. It’s just you, the page and your imagination. Who needs pictures?

    One drawback to my Kindle Touch is that I need a light in order to read on it. The Super Nova had it’s own backlit screen which meant I could read anytime, anywhere (at least when it was charged). But since I’m resourceful about when and where I’m reading AND I bought a cover with a small light in it, that’s not a hard obstacle for me to overcome. In direct sunlight or when I’m sitting under a lamp or other lighting, I don’t even need the cover light.

    Another issue for the Kindle Touch is that there is a pause while the screens ‘reconfigure’. This means you may have to wait 1/2 a second for the page to turn or when moving through the different menus. The Kindle is an ‘ink’ device as opposed to other digital formats that give you more instant gratification. However, I’m a patient person and don’t need that kind of response when I’m reading. I also think the ‘ink’ format is easier on my eyes than the digital format.

    The Kindle is fast enough for me and I love that I barely have to brush the screen with my pinky before it changes.

    Bottom line, my best recommendation to you is to do your research online, look at many reviews of all the devices out there that you’re interested in, then go to your nearest Best Buy or other electronics store and play around with what they have to offer. Look at how quickly the pages turn, how easy it is to maneuver through the menus and how easy it is for you to understand how to work the device. Decide whether or not you want to be able to Skype, balance your checkbook or play Angry Birds on it, or if you just want it for reading books and nothing else.

    And most importantly, DON’T let the salesguy talk you into paying more for something you’re not going to use. The salesguy I had kept punching the poor little demo Kindles in their faces and telling me about how slow they move and how little you could do with them – that I REALLY WANTED the Kindle Fire or some other $200 reader because it could DO SO MUCH!

    Sorry, guy. I’m just a middle-aged woman who wants to read without carrying around a lot of heavy books. Thanks anyway.

  9. First Daytona then Sturgis, who knows where it’ll lead. Remember, if you are the only one in your motorcycle club without a tattoo, it’s a gang not a club.

    • Sorry, Frog – but what/who/where is Sturgis?

      • There is a Sturgis in Michigan about 4 miles north of the Indiana line and 23 miles southwest of Coldwater. Could that be the Sturgis that Frog is talking about?

      • Is there a Bike Week there?

      • Brenda,

        There is (will be) a bike week in Sturgis, Michigan,

        However, I think Frog was talking about the one in Sturgis, South Dakota,

        Will you be attending?

      • Hmmmmm – don’t think so. Probably one Bike Week a year will be enough for me LOL!

  10. Hi Brenda,

    Go with the Kindle. I have the Kindle DX and love it. Like you, I’m an avid reader and was against any device reader but after lugging 3-4 books with me on vacations and having books pile up at my house, I decided to buy one.
    I went with the DX because of the size of the screen. The only draw back is
    that the back is not lit up so you need a light sometimes to read it. I have a Blackberry and have downloaded the Kindle app on it, so I’m able to read the same book on both my Kindle and Blackberry. Whichever one I’m using can synchronize with the other to the page that I last read, which is pretty cool!

    I still buy books sometimes because I, like you, like to feel a book in my hands and the smell of a book. And if there is a book I want to read but don’t really want to buy it, I go to my local public library. So I feel like I haven’t totally turned my back on bookstores, which I still love to wander in for hours.

    Recently, I decided I wanted a tablet that I could search the internet on. I debated on getting the Kindle Fire but since I already have a Kindle, I opted for an iPad2. I figured I could have a whole new world of book buying from itunes and ebooks and enook with it. And to be honest, I’m disappointed in it. I find that the books are more expansive then Kindle and Kindle has a better selection of electronic books. With regards to reading books, the only advantage my iPad2 has to my Kindle is that the back is lit up. So if I didn’t have the Kindle already, I would choose the Kindle Fire.

    Also, if you do go with the Kindle, don’t bother getting the leather case they show when you initially order you KIndle. Instead, go with a M-Edge Latitude Kindle Jacket (from Amazon). You can zip it up to protect your Kindle, it comes in multiple colors and has a pocket in the front to hold your power cord and light. It even has a place for you to slide in your light (M-Edge e-Luminator Booklight) on the back that hangs over your Kindle.

    Hope this helps!

    • Thanks, Brenda! So many good comments – how am I going to choose? My only experience with the Nook is my granddaughter’s. She got one for Christmas and loves it so much (she passed her Kindle down to her dad) – but she uses it for email, websurfing, etc. – not just reading.

  11. Ok, next time, you get someone to take your picture

  12. Good luck with your home improvements. My husband and I have been going through the same thing and I have been unofficially “grounded” on traveling for the next few months since we have spent quite a bit. The other day I was thinking about a trip to Myrtle Beach but was compairng the price of a hotel for 5 days would be the equivlanent of a new hardwood floor in my den which I would really like to have. How sad is that?! At least I got to Mackinac in January and will be visiting again this summer (I hope)!

  13. Hi Brenda, I too have a kindle, and LOVE it! To build, and/or contrast on the others comments, I probably would have gone w/the kindle fire for color had it been out when I purchased mine. Heck, they don’t even offer the kind I have anymore. its the wifi/3g/keyboard one & I see why they don’t offer it too….ya dont need the keyboard. It just gets in the way. The only time I use the wireless/3g is when I’m either updating it, or downloading books. I make selections/purchases on my computer….much easier to navigate!
    I think you’d be ok w/the 6″ size…the font is easily adjustable making it very easy to read. Easy to stash in your purse too.
    One thing they changed since I bought mine (and I receive all updates so I get to take advantage of this now) is books can be loaned between friends! Also, there are hundreds of free books!
    I love my hardback book collection, but like you & the others already noted, taking trips sure is easier w/a kindle! I surely don’t miss storing all the paperbacks either!
    Something I’ve had fun with are the protective skins to put on it. I have the beautiful cherry blossoms … ssooo pretty!

    Let us know what you decide!


    • Thanks, Nancy! Hmmm . . . not a lot of comments on Nooks. I think they’re newer than Kindles though.

  14. I have a Nook which I’ve had for over a year now. I do enjoy it for the convenience of being able to get a new book any time you wish! At the time I got mine Kindles only downloaded books from Amazon and they did not work with the online Great Lakes digital library used in my town library in Gladstone. Only the format for the Nook and some other e-readers did. You may want to check into that before deciding. Of course it could have changed by now too.

    I also discovered that I can read my Nook selections on my smartphone which is even more handy if I happen to not have a book with me at times!

    If I were to buy one today I’d choose one of the Nooks with color and more web accessibility. If you don’t want that capability at all and just want it for books, I’d have no problems recommending a basic Nook.

  15. I also forgot to mention that B&N has Free Fridays for Nooks if you “like” them on Facebook. Every Friday they offer a free book which often is a great way to find out about new authors or different types of books to try. You can also do a search on the B&N website for books that are free. There are tons to download right there.

    • Thanks for your comments, Ann!

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