Outdoor Markets

When traveling I often find one of my favorite things to do is explore outdoor markets. I am someone that works at First Monday’s here in Texas, so seeing the layouts, crafts and set ups of locals in foreign places always excites me.

The locals, the colors, smells and products always make me smile.

The cruise was no different.  Coffee and Chocolate in Honduras, Chocolate and purses in Belize, clay crafts & leather goods in Mexico. I had some pretty amazing adventures in these countries, but I found the hustle & bustle of the markets just as exciting.

I am always on a limited budget when I shop in these locations, I typically buy a small food product of the country and a Christmas Tree ornament.  I normally take a ton of photos but sadly didn’t this last trip. I think I was too distracted or something.

here are a few of the outdoor market booth pictures I took, and if you ever travel to an exotic location I recommend taking a chance and going to the local outdoor markets.  You never know WHO you will meet, or WHAT you will find. 🙂


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My 2014 Book List


This year I am going to try and read at least 150 books.  I love to read, but this is a tall order.  I have been working on a potential must read list for some time, and here is my list of books I am hoping to read in 2014.  These are not in any particular order, you can follow along with my book challengne at my Goodreads profile.

These are the books that were on my to read list at the time of writing this post… in typical Jen fashion I am sure I will stray from the list often. I also often add books practically on a daily basis, because let’s face it… while travel is the best way to escape the cubicle, reading is the 2nd.

A Breath of Frost (The Lovegrove Legacy, #1) Harvey, Alyxandra

A Mad, Wicked Folly -Sharon Biggs-Waller
Read my review HERE

A Perfect Blood (The Hollows, #10) Harrison, Kim
A Shade of Vampire (A Shade of Vampire, #1) Forrest, Bella

Across the Universe-Beth Revis
Read my review HERE

Afterlife Academy Admans, Jaimie
Afterparty Stampler, Ann Redisch
Alienated (Alienated, #1) Landers, Melissa
All That Glows Graudin, Ryan
Amulet of Elusion (The Lost Amulet Chronicles, #1) Johnson, Katie Lynn
Angelfall (Penryn & the End of Days, #1) Ee, Susan
Angelfire (Angelfire, #1) Moulton, Courtney Allison
Article 5 (Article 5, #1) Simmons, Kristen
Ashfall (Ashfall, #1) Mullin, Mike
Avalon (Avalon, #1) Arnett, Mindee

Awaken Katie Kacvinsky
Read my Review HERE

Awakened (The Guardian Legacy, #1) Walters, Ednah
Because You’re Mine (Mine, #1) Langston, K.
Black City (Black City, #1) Richards, Elizabeth
Black Magic Jernigan, Brenda
Black Magic Sanction (The Hollows, #8) Harrison, Kim
Born Wicked (The Cahill Witch Chronicles, #1) Spotswood, Jessica

Breathe (Breathe, #1) Sarah Crossan
Read my Review HERE

Control (Control, #1) Kang, Lydia

Cress (The Lunar Chronicles) (Lunar Chronicles, #3) Marissa Meyer
Read my review HERE

Cruel Beauty Rosamund Hodge
Read my review HERE

Crystal Fire Dane, Jordan
Darkwalker (Nicolas Lenoir, #1) Tettensor, E.L.

Daughter of Smoke & Bone (Daughter of Smoke and Bone) – Laini Taylor
Read my review HERE

Defiance (Defiance, #1) Redwine, C.J.
Dirty Magic (The Prospero’s War, #1) Wells, Jaye
Divinity (Persephone’s League of Immortals, #2) Heltsley, Andrea

Dorothy Must Die Danielle Paige
Read my review HERE

Dryad Solomonovich, Sonya
Enclave (Razorland, #1) Aguirre, Ann
Entwine Berto, Rebecca
Eve (Eve, #1) Carey, Anna
Ever After (The Hollows, #11) Harrison, Kim
Everneath (Everneath, #1) Ashton, Brodi
Exit Strategy (Katerina Carter Fraud Thriller, #1) Cross, Colleen
Fairest In All the Land Willingham, Bill
Fearless Love Benjamin, Meg
Fearsome Dreamer (Fearsome Dreamer, #1) Eve, Laure

Feed (Newsflesh Trilogy, #1)  Mira Grant
Read my review HERE

Firebolt (The Dragonian, #1) Woods, Adrienne
Graceling (Graceling Realm, #1) Cashore, Kristin
Grave Mercy (His Fair Assassin, #1) LaFevers, R.L.
Gravity (The Taking, #1) West, Melissa
Heart of the Ocean Moore, Heather B.
Her Dark Curiosity (The Madman’s Daughter, #2) Shepherd, Megan
Hexed (Hexed, #1) Krys, Michelle
Hollow World Sullivan, Michael J.
Hourglass (Hourglass, #1) McEntire, Myra
In A Pickle DeFee, Ann
In the After (In the After #1) Lunetta, Demitria
Incarnate (Newsoul, #1) Meadows, Jodi
Inside Out (Insider, #1) Snyder, Maria V.
Kismetology Admans, Jaimie
Kitty and the Midnight Hour (Kitty Norville, #1) Vaughn, Carrie
Love in the Time of Cholera Márquez, Gabriel Garcí­a
Marie Antoinette, Serial Killer Alender, Katie
Maybe This Time (Maybe, #1) Fernando, Chantal

Mind Games (Mind Games, #1) Kiersten White
Read my Review HERE

Monsters Vs Kittens Jones, Dani
Moon Called (Mercy Thompson, #1) Briggs, Patricia
My Name is Rapunzel Hilton, K.C.
Not a Drop to Drink McGinnis, Mindy
Not Pretty Enough Admans, Jaimie
Once Bitten, Twice Shy (Jaz Parks, #1) Rardin, Jennifer
Origin Khoury, Jessica
Outlander (Outlander, #1) Gabaldon, Diana
Palace of Spies Zettel, Sarah
Pale Demon (The Hollows, #9) Harrison, Kim
Parlor Games Biaggio, Maryka
Partials (Partials, #1) Wells, Dan
Pawn (The Blackcoat Rebellion, #1) Carter, Aimee
Premeditated McQuein, Josin L.
Providence (Providence, #1) McGuire, Jamie
Pure (Pure, #1) Baggott, Julianna
Rasputin’s Shadow Khoury, Raymond
Reaper Murphy, L.S.
Reckless Rescue Grey, Rinelle
Red Midnight Mikaelsen, Ben
Renegade (The Elysium Chronicles, #1) Souders, J.A.
Seduce Johnson, Missy
SG – Suicide Game Haidji
Shadow and Bone (The Grisha, #1) Bardugo, Leigh

Shatter Me (Shatter Me, #1) Tahereh Mafi
read my review HERE

Silver Shadows (Bloodlines, #5) Mead, Richelle
Skylark (Skylark, #1) Spooner, Meagan
Something Strange and Deadly (Something Strange and Deadly, #1) Dennard, Susan
Spark (Feyguard, #1) Sharp, Anthea

Special Assignment  Ashley Nemer
Read my Review HERE

Storm Damages (Storm Damages, #1) Alexander, Magda

Stray (The Shifters) -Rachel Vincent
Read my review HERE

Swan Song McCammon, Robert R.
Sweet Evil (The Sweet Trilogy, #1) Higgins, Wendy
Tales of a Female Nomad: Living at Large in the World Gelman, Rita Golden
Tea Leafing (#1) Macdonald, Weezie
Tempest (Tempest, #1) Cross, Julie
The Company You Keep Marzec, Penelope
The Echoes of Love Fielding, Hannah
The Evolution of Jane Schine, Cathleen
The First Days (As the World Dies, #1) Frater, Rhiannon
The Forest of Hands and Teeth (The Forest of Hands and Teeth, #1) Ryan, Carrie
The Girl of Fire and Thorns (Fire and Thorns, #1) Carson, Rae
The Immortal Rules (Blood of Eden, #1) Kagawa, Julie
The Jewel of Kamara Blake, Bridie

The Killing Woods Lucy Christopher
Read my review HERE

The Legend of the Blue Eyes (Blue Eyes Trilogy, #1) McMichael, B. Kristin
The Lost ( Fallen Guardians Book #1) Hurley, Michele
The Most Beautiful Place in the World Cameron, Ann

The Narrowing Path David J. Normoyle
Read my review HERE

The One (The Selection, #3) Kiera Cass
Read my review HERE

The Orb of Truth (The Horn King, #1) Wyckoff, Brae

The Outlaw Demon Wails (The Hollows, Book 6) -Kim Harrison
Read my review HERE

The Pledge Kimberly Derting
Read my review HERE

The Princess in the Opal Mask (The Opal Mask, #1) Lundquist, Jenny
The Raven Boys (The Raven Cycle, #1) Stiefvater, Maggie
The Secret Diamond Sisters (The Secret Diamond Sisters, #1) Madow, Michelle
The Slayer Prince Brockie, Elizabeth
The Tell-Tale Con Gilchrist, Aimee
The Undead Pool (The Hollows, #12) Harrison, Kim
The Unearthly (The Unearthly, #1) Thalassa, Laura
The Valentine’s Arrangement (Hard Feelings, #1) Leverich, Kelsie
The Winter Witch Brackston, Paula
The Witches’ Sleep (The Witches’ Sleep, #1) Deann, Kaitlyn

These Broken Stars -Amie Kaufman
Read my review HERE

Timebound Walker, Rysa
Touched (Sense Thieves, #1) Jackson, Corrine
Travel Wings: An Adventure Shattuck, Nancy
Traveler Green, Dennis W.

Under the Never Sky
Read my Review HERE

Uninvited Sophie Jordan
read my review HERE

Unraveling (Unraveling, #1) Norris, Elizabeth
The Underground City (Lily Harper, #2) Mallory, H.P.
Untitled (Throne of Glass, #3) Maas, Sarah J.
Untouchable (Everwinter Series, #1) Janell, Alice
Unwind (Unwind, #1) Shusterman, Neal
Vendetta Lane, Sienna
Vengeance Born (The Light Blade, #1) Griffin, Kylie
Venom (Secrets of the Eternal Rose, #1) Paul, Fiona
Viral Nation (Viral Nation #1) Grimes, Shaunta
Vitro Khoury, Jessica
Wanderlove Hubbard, Kirsten
White Witch, Black Curse (The Hollows, #7) Harrison, Kim
Winter Solstice Winter (Viking Blood Saga #1 Squires, E.J.

Wither (The Chemical Garden Trilogy) -Lauren DeStefano
Read my Review Here

You Are Mine (Mine, #1) Falor, Janeal

What is on your list?

New Years Goals… and all that nonsense…

Hahaha yeah I know it is New Years, and this is the time of year that everyone has goals, goals and more goals.

loose weight, eat better, save money… blah blah blah blah. We have all been there, and well this year boys and girls I am making my goals, fun!

It is also a time to sit back and reflect on what an amazing year you had, and I had one.  I spent the night in three new states Mississippi, Alabama & Iowa.

wordless w

I went to San Diego Comic Con & got up close and got up close and  personal with Travis Fimmel,



was in the crowd that Joe Manganiello teased he was going to strip down…


I swam in the Belize Barrier Reef,

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zip lined through the Honduran jungle,

Zip Line 5

negotiated (in SPANISH!) in the Mexican markets,



oh and did I mention I kissed a Sting Ray?


and drum roll please….I FINALLY got my passport stamped & booked my first trip to a foreign country that I am taking by myself.


As I sit back and reflect, 2013 was perfect 

Well in 2014, I am all about fun or at least my idea of fun, and not a single one of them involves my damn cubicle

Jen’s Fun Goals (not resolutions!!!) for 2014.

Read 150 books this year– I love to read, but even this is a tough goal for me, we will see! Tomorrow I will post the VERY LARGE list of the books I am possibly considering.  Tell me your must reads! I am always happy to hear about a good book!

Watch every movie on the AFI’s 100 Greatest Movies List

Make it to 5 NEW states– This is getting harder for me, so wish me luck!

Make it to 10 different comic cons– I have been working on this plan for a year now! So again wish me luck!

Learn how to use my damn sewing machine!

Learn to Dance Samba.  As I am planning on going to Brazil soon… I feel this is a must.

I want to do a lot of fun DIY projects. I will share what I do with you of course!

All in all I have big plans this year, and I can’t wait to see what unexpected adventures pop up!

Most importantly I plan on living by my favorite quote of all time…


What are your goals for this year?

Happy New Year’s Everyone, may it be filled with all your hopes and dreams!


I kissed a stingray

We are swimming with the sting rays” my mother tells me.

Umm what? like the things that killed the crocodile hunter?”

Yep” she tells me.

umm yay….”

Mind you she didn’t tell me this until we were in Honduras, before this moment I was led to believe we were going on a beach break.

In a word I was terrified.


I like to believe that I am up for anything, but the truth is swimming with animals that have killed one of the most fearless men in the world made me nervous.

But I grinned, and told myself it would be ok.

We get to the location, Everyone Loves Rays in Cozumel and are briefed on what to expect.


We would get 30 minutes to swim with the rays and 30 minutes to snorkel with the rays.

We learn the main purpose of the facility is educate the public about the rays, and explain why they are quickly becoming endangered. Hint Humans are to blame.

The breed and release the rays into the wild with the hopes of increasing their population, with the hope they will survive.

They are not technically endangered per se, but their situation has been considered problematic by most conservationist.

It was time to get in the water…

ummm…. ok.

I get in the water, and I wish I had the video (that I did not know they were filming, because I kept jumping, every time one came to me)

I was freaked out.

They asked if we wanted to feed them. I quickly said no.

actually it was more of a hell no.

I swim out a little deeper to learn about their ecology.


We finally can touch them. I touch and quickly pull away.

It was this moment one that as ray that I swear was 10 feet across brushed against me and I freak out.


Who wants to hold one?” the guides asks us.

everyone in my family is excited to do this, I am quickly shaking my head no.

I was literally minutes away from a panic attack.

Then my 80 year old self kicks in… Jennifer do this or you will regret it.

Ugh sometimes my 80 year old self really pisses me off.

I get in line.

When it is my turn, I am close to panicking…

Animals smell fear, because the minute I hold the little bugger he starts squirming and thrashing about and I scream and drop him and he swims away.






everyone is laughing at me at this point.

Finally I start to get more comfortable with the majestic animals.

Who wants to kiss a sting ray?.”

Surprisingly I am the only person who says Yes.

So I kissed a sting ray… and I liked it!


Just escape the cubicle already

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