Sunday, January 17, 2016

I ate the Rainbow Bagel so you wouldn't have to.

Short answer: Eh.

Long answer: The Rainbow Bagel at The Bagel Store was sticky to the touch (not sure why), overpriced, entirely too pastry-like, and somehow lacking in flavor. The funfetti cream cheese was a great draw and I would actually have this again on a plain bagel. But only like once every 5 years.

Longer answer: OMG I'm blogging again! Anyway - so many people decided that these Rainbow Bagels were the new thing. Like the saving grace of Brooklyn, the holy grail even. But are they? ARE THEY?

I had been dying to head over to this place. I figured I could just hop on the bus and shoot over to Greenpoint or Williamsburg or whatever neighborhood in (not so) newly populated North Brooklyn this place was in...grab one, have my mind blown and take a super cute picture of it to make everyone's mouth water and think I was SO COOL and IN THE KNOW! Alas.

When I arrived at the Bagel Store, I couldn't help but notice it was a hole in the wall. "But it's always the hole in the wall places that have the delicious foods!", they said. "It's totally worth taking the G train!", they said. I digress.

There were 4 or 5 really excited, really loud young girls in the store, standing in the way, confusing me on where the heck the line started. I saw the "Rainbow" bagels (this is in quotes because today they were only green and yellow) chilling in a display box and was already unimpressed. You see, Native New Yorkers (and NNYs skip this part because you already know this) who like bagels can look at a bagel and be able to tell if it's both doughy, chewy, and naturally crispy enough for them to purchase. We also do this with Pizza slices btw. These bagels were, something other than.

I decided to go for it. But then I remembered that I needed to pick a cream cheese. The kid at the store sullenly suggested I go for the Funfetti Cream Cheese. Because that's totally a normal thing. And he eats it by the spoonful.

His accent led me to believe that he might be from here, so I said, "ok but like, would a New York person who likes bagels eat this...funfetti cream cheese? Because if I'm being honest, this sounds insane." He brought me over some to taste, on a knife (!?!) and I was sold. The cream cheese was cheesy and only slightly sweet despite its name and appearance.

Finally I asked for the bagel to be toasted. "Oh the toaster don't work."

::cue brain explosion::

I thought about a lot of things in this moment. Where was I? What kind of place is this with a broken toaster? Why am I here? Then I was angry, why do I ever listen to other people? What am I doing in Williamsburg? And finally, when all hope was lost he interjected with "But they just came out of the oven's like..."

Which brings me to the end of my tale folks. I ended up paying at least like 6+ dollars for this creation that was somewhere between a food you would find on Care Bears and/or Fraggle Rock and you know - that's usually a compliment in my world  but not today.

I do not suggest for adults. I probably won't go back. But if I were a kid, I would BEG my mom to buy me a zillion of these.

Sunday, January 4, 2015

31 Days to Better Blogging Day 4: Top Commenters

Okay now I'm all caught up! I've been back posting the days of this challenge for organizational purposes. This is a month long challenge by Rachel @ Parajunkee that I'm so excited to be digging into.

I don't think I ever did this! Even in the prime of my blogging days, I never thought to highlight people who comment. I look so forward to adding this element to my blog. It's nice to know who's checking for me!

Rachel also suggests to do this because you'll be able to comment on their blog in turn. How lovely. I would say at this very moment, it doesn't entirely make sense for me to post one until people notice I'm blogging again haha!

I am looking forward to "rewarding" commenters with books/ecards/features etc. Bring it on friends!

How do you acknowledge the people who comment on your blog on a daily basis?

I'm back - for real.

Welp - I haven't really got a valid reason for you folks! Back when I wasn't working and had all the time in the world, I hadn't realized how time consuming keeping up a blog would be!

It became more of a chore than a passion for a long while. I also switched names to La Toya Literally (from my humble beginnings as LazyGirl Reads, which I was more commonly known as) and re-introducing myself to you as that was becoming difficult to do as well.

So yeah, there are a bunch of first world excuses as to why I haven't been blogging. Bing bang boom.

What I intend to do, is to very slowly get back in the swing of things. Not overwhelm myself with writing a review or two per week (although, I really really could...I've read a LOT and haven't reported back to you all here).

If I'm popping up into your feed, please point me to the hippest blog out there as I gather my thoughts and get it all together again.

Expect lions and tigers and bears! Defying feats of gravity and clowns! Expect the unexpected!

Thanks for reading!

La Toya

PS: Happy New Year!

Saturday, January 3, 2015

31 Days to Better Blogging: Day 3 About Me Refresher

And now we've come upon the easiest thing for me to do which is talk about myself. HEHE!!

Rachel has a lot of great points on her original post. While I'm thinking that I can flaunt that beside having a passion for reading, I'm actually a pretty darn good singer - she points out that that might not be of interest to someone coming to your page to understand WHY they should read your blog.

There's also the challenge to post or highlight old entries you may have that could be of interest to a new reader. This has me thinking about my blog and it's existence in an entirely new way. There was a time that I was posting several posts a day on different subjects, loosely based around books. And there were also times that I took a break from posting about books and would gush over Halloween instead.

These posts are sort of lost (might not be if I poke around in the Help section a little). Lost because I changed my domain name altogether. I'm hoping I can re-activate that page so that I can include the cool posts I once had.

Anyway, I'm going to work on finding those old posts and getting a cool updated picture of myself for you all.

Do you have an about me page?

Friday, January 2, 2015

31 Days to Better Blogging Day 2: Spring Cleaning

This is a challenge by Rachel at Parajunkee! Click here for her original post with great advice on cleaning upy our blog!

Oh me, oh my. My blog is a HOT MESS. Coming back to it this week has got me feeling slightly overwhelmed, slightly excited. Most unorganized. So once again, how incredibly serendipitous that this challenge is happening!

I have quite a few things off to the side that once worked for a previous design but does not work now. I guess the questions I would have for myself would be:

do I delete them entirely? do I change the colors? do I come up with something completely different?

And there are things that seem a bit dated. I started this blog on a sultry summer day all the way back in August 2010 with no clue about design, color coordination etc. I feel like keeping my little buttons and "blog awards" would be a nod back to my beginnings. But it really doesn't work for where I want to take the design.

Lastly, before I delete a few of these things, I need to figure out how I got it there in the first place! I barely remember how I even get those glitter gif stars in my sidebar in the first place. I would hate to delete those!

Any new/returning bloggers having these issues? What should I do?!

Thursday, January 1, 2015

31 Days of Better Blogging: Day 1

So, as it normally works in my life, Rachel from Parajunkee has challenged us to a month long better blogging challenge - precisely when I needed to get better at blogging. Haha, thanks Universe!

Something I prided myself on when I was a bit more active was posting really relevant comments on as many blogs as I possibly could. I would HATE seeing people comment for the sole purpose of having you circle back to their block. I mean, really?

While I tend to put on my signature with my blog link in it, I never said anything irrelevant or weird. Some of the best (read: worst) comments I'd see would be:

"Cool. Here's my site..."

"I would actually never read this book, but whatever. Check out my giveaway!"

"::blog name here::"


I'm challenging myself to set aside time to comment on a few pages every day as well as a couple entries per person. I'd also like to make new friends this way!

Read Rachel's original post here with some great advice!

What are some of the comments you've gotten or seen that annoy the crap out of you?

Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Teaser Tuesdays: The Hunter the Bear and the Seventh Sister

Teaser Tuesdays is a fun and exciting meme hosted by Miz B at Should Be Reading. The cool button is from Once Upon a Twilight!

The rules are that you take a teaser from the book you're reading but make sure there are no spoilers!! Check out mine from 

My Teaser:

"I know you are close, Son of Earth...tell me what you are doing here in Arcas?" the deep guttural voice asked. "What profit have you been offered to sell out both our worlds?"

from The Hunter, the Bear, and the Seventh Sister by B.I Woolet

I guess that's a super teaser since there's no context whatsoever. Guess you're going to have the check the book out soon!!

Thanks for stopping by! Leave me a comment and link me to your Teaser if you have one! 

Monday, February 10, 2014

It's Monday! What are you reading?! {16}

It's Monday! What are you reading? is a weekly meme hosted by Shelia at Book Journey! It's a great way to plan out your reading week and get ideas from other bloggers as well! Thanks for visiting!

Hey guys! I'm so glad to be back blogging again and participating in my favorite meme. Drop me a comment on what you're reading so I can add to my TBR list!

Bobby Ether and The Academy by R. Scott Boyer
I got this from Netgalley and the jury is still out on it. I want it to be awesome, I really do...however..yeah I'll let you know when I get at least halfway through it what my thoughts are.


The Statistical Probability of Love at First Sight by Jennifer E. Smith
And here's an "oldie" but goodie. I remember when this came out and everyone was so enchanted by it,  so I figured I give it a go, this being Valentine's week and all :)

What are you reading??

Did Not Finish: The Liars' Gospel by Naomi Alderman

About a million years ago, I requested this book on Netgalley from Little Brown and Co. It has taken me forever to finish this book for one reason or another and at about 63% in, I had to put it down once and for all.

As a devout Christian, I couldn't really figure out how to feel about this book. The re-telling of the Gospels surrounding Jesus' life sounded interesting to me at the onset. But once there was so much rawness and diversion from the story I'm familiar with, I had to change my mindset about what I was reading entirely. 

The writing in and of itself was fascinating, the interweaving of sacred and sinful behaviors in one breath was executed flawlessly by Naomi Alderman. I'm interested in reading other books by her and I actually plan to. But the subject was just a little too far out for me. 

This book is NOT for everyone but I do suggest you check it out if you enjoy exquisite writing and fiction based on historical events. 

Sunday, February 9, 2014

Omg seriously plus TBR List

OH hello!

So, I've been away a while, and sort of reading. I've been thinking about reading and blogging and the like always gets in the way.

I should put "life" in quotes because up until right now, I've been coming down from being on my first National Tour (I'm an opera singer for those of you that don't know), then my first musical reading in over 10 years, and then, nothing! Now I'm back working a temp gig for a little while and I realized that I have way more time than I thought.

I mean, I've downloaded SO MANY Galleys on NetGalley, discovered an entirely new newsletter that sends me free book downloads and deeply discounted books in general, and there was one time that I found like one thousand new books (not just in good condition but actual books that has JUST come out!) But I never got around to reading most of those books. Ugh, I'm so behind on life.

Anyway, I'm posting a books I must read list here for my reference and to get me back in the swing of things book blogging. Drop me a line if you'd like. Can't wait to pop around to some of your blogs!

Parable of Sower by Octavia Butler
I just freaking LOVED Kindred and I need to read every single book that Butler writes.

Alex Cross' continuing saga by James Patterson
And that's Merry Christmas, Alex Cross Kill Alex Cross Alex Cross Run Cross My Heart OMG I'M SO BEHIND.

Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn
Not because it's a dern movie, but because I found out what it's about and it sounds AWESOME.

Sheesh, and like every other book.