Heading Home!

Hey everyone,

Wanted to check in with another quick post. Sadly, our vacation has come to an end, and we are currently 23 minutes from home. On the plus side, we still have tomorrow off, so I’m not terribly sad, yet. Haha.

Syracuse was fantastic. While not an obvious choice for a vacation spot, it had a ton of great things. Our first adventure was getting brunch at a place called Funk ‘N Waffles. I believe it is a music venue at night, but they serve all sorts of waffles all day. You can get anything on the waffle. I have to admit, it wasn’t the greatest place I’ve eaten, but it was fun.

The big pull to the area is Destiny USA (Destiny Mall), which is a massive, 4 story mall. It was sweet. We spent the majority of Saturday there, wandering around.

We ate at Dave & Busters, which, if you aren’t familiar, is a restaurant with a bar and an arcade. We were under the impression that it was an adults only place, but were mistaken. It was still a fun time and I dominated at skeeball!

Our Best Western hotel room was fantastic. King size with a Jacuzzi

Day 2 was equally as fun. We started our day off at the Rosamond Giffard Zoo. It was your typical zoo, but the weather was beautiful and it was a ton of fun.

We took a quick pit stop at Onandoga Lake. There wasn’t a ton to do there, aside from a skate park and some volleyball, but the lake was pretty.

We headed back to Destiny Mall and ate dinner at Margarittaville. Great food, fun atmosphere. Definitely recommend it.

Last event of the evening was the Yellow Brick Road Casino. If you know me at all, you know that The Wizard of Oz is my all time favorite movie, and this casino was a Wizard of Oz themed casino! We lost, but it was great!

Our final day in Syracuse (today) was a beach day. We went to this fantastic park called Green Lake State Park. It is so beautiful there. If you’re ever in the Syracuse area, definitely check it out.

I had a great time with my hubby this weekend. Not looking forward to going back to reality, but on the plus side, that won’t be until Wednesday. I hope you all have enjoyed the past few days.

If you want to see any photos, I posted some on Instagram and Twitter: @jessicainspired

I’m almost finished with another book, so expect a review soon. 😊

Until next time –

Jessica

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Vacation Time!

Hey everyone!

Super quick blog update. My hubby and I are leaving this morning for a mini vacation to Syracuse, N.Y. (about an hour and a half from where we live). Our second anniversary is on Tuesday, so we wanted to get away for a few days.

I will definitely update again when we return, but if you want to stay up to date, definitely follow me on Twitter: @jessicainspired

Let me know what your plans are for the weekend. I hope you enjoy whatever you are doing and I will talk to you again soon!

Until next time –

Jessica

Homeward Bound Review

Hey everyone!

I hope your week is moving along quickly. Quick recap, The Who was fantastic. If you get a chance to see them, definitely do it.

Anyway, I’m doing a fun review today. My husband and I were scrolling through Netflix last night, and came across Homeward Bound. My husband revealed he had never seen it before so I jumped at the chance to watch it with him. I watched this movie a ton when I was little.

Watching it with adult eyes was pretty entertaining, but I think the story and movie stand the test of time. It’s heartwarming, funny and uplifting.

If you didn’t know, this movie is Disney’s 1993 remake of the 1963 hit The Incredible Journey. It follows three pets: Chance, the mischievous Bulldog; Shadow, the wise Golden Retriever; and Sassy, the classy Himalayan cat. After the three mistakenly believe they have been abandoned by their humans, they set out on an adventure to find their way home.

Something doesn’t smell right. They’ve been gone way too long. Much longer than they should have been. Something’s really wrong. – Shadow

Each animal has a distinct personality, and of course, we can hear their thoughts.

Shadow is the logical, leader of the group. He is the one who decides to go out in search of their humans. He remains calm and collected, even through some of the trying times of their adventure.

You’ve learned everything you need, Chance. – Shadow

Sassy is sarcastic and a bit prissy at times. But she is also very loyal. She gets the dogs out of quite a few messes during their adventures. Her one liners are great.

Was that my sixth life? I’ll just say it was my fourth. – Sassy

Chance is our main character. He starts the movie off as the main narrator, explaining that for quite a while he lived on the street, until he was ‘captured,’ and taken to the pound. Eventually, he is adopted by the Seaver family, but doesn’t quite understand family. It’s mostly his journey we watch, as he grows in his maturity.

I learned an important lesson that day: cake and polyester don’t mix. – Chance

As silly of a concept as it sounds, the voices are well done. The animal’s behaviors match perfectly to the script and it moves the plot forward. This story is definitely character driven. The plot wouldn’t be as fun without the three animals.

Bolder dash! You’re seeing things!

Overall, this is a fantastic children’s movie. I definitely plan to show it to my kids some day. If you haven’t seen it, go watch it! It’s on Netflix. πŸ˜€

RATING: 5/5 β˜†

Let me know what you thought in the comments!

If you want to stay up to date with me, you can follow me on Twitter & Instagram @JessicaInspired, and like my facebook page – @authorjessicarachow.

Until next time –

Jessica

Rapid Fire Book Tag

Hello and Happy Saturday! I have a three day weekend because hubby and I decided to take Monday off. We are seeing The Who Sunday night and used it as an excuse to have a day off. 

I’ll definitely post a blog about the show. I’m expecting it to be great. Downside is we have lawn seats and there is a threat of rain…so keep your fingers crossed for us! 

Today I thought I would do another tag. As always, feel free to do the tag yourself and let me know so I can read your answers. 

The original creator of the tag did a YouTube video which you can watch here.

1. Ebook or Physical book?

Definitely physical. I like the idea behind ebooks, but I rarely read them. I love to have the physical book in my hands (and on my shelf).

2. Paperback or Hardcover?

Paperback. They are easier to read, and you don’t have to worry about storing the sleeve somewhere safe while you read. 

3. Online or In Store Shopping? 

I buy the majority of my books online because you can’t beat the price. 99.9% of the time I can get a book for much cheaper and shipped free on Amazon. I do, however, love to shop around used bookstores. 

4. Trilogies or Series? 

I think I’ll go with trilogies. 

5. Heroes or Villains?

Learning the backstory and motivations behind the villain in a story, if done right, can be very compelling and surprising, so I will go with villains. 

6. A book you want everyone to read?

Illuminae – Amie Kaufman and Jay Kristoff. You’ve seen me talk about this book a million times. Go read it. πŸ˜›

7. Recommend an underrated book?

While I don’t think it’s underrated, it’s not as well known as it should be. Eve: The Awakening – Jenna Moreci. 

8. The last book you finished?

Daughter of Smoke and Bone – Laini Taylor 

9. The last book you bought? 

I’m cheating a little because I am about to buy this book today, so I’m using it as my answer haha. Before The Fall – Noah Hawley

10. Weirdest thing you’ve used as a bookmark?

My phone. Because reading is more important than social interaction πŸ˜‰ 

11. Used books: Yes or No?

Yes! As stated previously, I love used book stores and used books. 

12. Top three favorite genres? 

Fantasy, Sci-fi, Mystery/Thriller 

13. Borrow or Buy?

Buy. That way I have no pressure to return it. My bank account, however, enjoys borrowing books. 

14. Characters or Plot?

Characters. If I’m connecting with the characters, I am much more likely to stick through to the end of the book. 

15. Long Books or Short Books?

Tough question, because it depends on my mood. But I guess I’ll go with long. 

16. Long Chapters or Short Chapters?

Short chapters. I seem to fly through books with shorter chapters no matter how long the book is. 

17. Name the first three books you think of…

Six of Crows – Leigh Bardugo 

Passenger- Alexandra Bracken 

If I Stay – Gayle Forman 

18. Books the make you laugh or cry?

Laugh. 

19. Our World or Fictional Worlds?

Fictional worlds. Not sure why. I like the escape. 

20. Audiobooks: Yes or No

For very specific books, I enjoy audio books (Illuminae). Otherwise, no.

21. Do you ever judge a book by its cover? 

Once and a while, but I try not to. 

22. Book to Movie or Book to TV?

If done correctly, book to movie. Doesn’t happen often though, haha. 

23. A Movie or TV Show you preferred to its Book?

Vampire Diaries. I just couldn’t get into the books, but I watched the show all the way to the end. 

24. Series or Stand Alone?

Stand alone. 
That’s all I have for you today. Expect a post about about The Who concert, probably Monday since I’ll be home late Sunday. I hope you enjoy your weekend! 

You can still read Chapter One of Alter Reach here.

As always, if you want to stay up to date with me, you can follow me on Twitter & Instagram @JessicaInspired, and like my facebook page.

Until next time –
Jessica

The Secret Life of Pets – Movie ReviewΒ 

Hello everyone! A little hiatus but I am back and ready to post frequently again!

My husband and I watched The Secret Life of Pets the other night and I really wanted to review it. Per usual, I will try to avoid spoilers but it’s best you see the movie before reading the review. Enjoy πŸ™‚ 

The Secret Life of Pets – Review 

Louis C.K. plays Max, an adorable dog who starts off the movie explaining how his owner, Katie (Ellie Kemper), is practically his soul mate. To him, their bond is unbreakable. That is until she brings home Duke (played by Eric Stonestreet). Max’s initial reaction is jealously, hilariously displayed, as he attempts to make Duke look like a crazy animal by breaking things around the house. This inevitably is interrupted when Duke and Max find themselves out on the street, and eventually in the back of a animal control vehicle. That is until, Snowball (Kevin Hart) enters the picture and craziness ensues. 

This movie really hit the mark for me. It delivers brilliantly with visuals, jokes, action sequences and full-on silliness. First of all, the acting is on point. There wasn’t a misplaced joke in the entire movie. I’m sure some will disagree, because this is technically a kids movie, and the jokes are a little adult sometimes, but I thoroughly enjoyed it. I found myself laughing, and then laughing harder as the humor kept piling on. 

The visuals and sequences in the movie are fantastic. I’m not an expert in animated movies, but this really impressed me. Sometimes the scenes looked so real, I was almost fooled. The action packed sequences drove the plot forward, with small breaks of quieter scenes to bring the focus back in. I was very impressed. 

The story line and dialogue were genuine and hysterical. The movie knew when to make you laugh, cry and gasp while telling a super compelling story that I think will take a couple watch throughs to really get the full effect. 

I recommend this movie. I drew some comparisons to Zootopia, but I found this movie great enough to stand out on it’s own. It packed in all the criteria to make a great movie. It’s definitely a kids movie with some jokes meant to make the adults laugh. 

RATING: 5/5 β˜†


Let me know what you thought in the comments below. 

You can still read Chapter One of Alter Reach here.

As always, if you want to stay up to date with me, you can follow me on Twitter & Instagram @JessicaInspired, and like my facebook page.

Until next time –
Jessica