Poetry Month


In honor of poetry month, I have decided to share my favorite poem:


When I compare:

What I have lost with what I have gained,
What I have missed with what attained,
Little room do I find for pride.

I am aware
How many days have been idly spent;
How like an arrow the good intent
Has fallen short or been turned aside.

But who shall dare
To measure loss and gain in this wise?
Defeat may be victory in disguise;
The lowest ebb is the turn of the tide.

by Henry Wadsworth Longfellow


(BookR) The Forced Bride Of Alazar

Pages: 224

Cover: 4/★’s out of 10

Book: 6.5/★’s out of 10

Publishing Date: May 1, 2017

Publisher: Harlequin Presents

My review:

Johara brings to life the inner turmoil of a lot of women who take part in arranged marriages, or at least the inner turmoil I imagine I would face in a similar situation. She finds herself engaged to the newest (or original?) Sheikh of Alazar when he suddenly regains his memory. It is especially hard for her as she briefly experienced the hope of living life her own way when his brother (the assumed sheikh at the time) married because he found out he had a child he knew nothing about. Hewitt really knows how to build tension between the characters in her story’s and I just can’t get enough of it. I hate reading romances where the man just blows a kiss in the girls direction one time and then she’s his.

This was the perfect follow up to The Secret Heir, I loved that she completely flipped the script and took the second book in a different but similar direction.

Book Description:

Claimed for the sultan’s pleasure! 

Kidnapped decades ago, Azim al Bahjat stuns the Kingdom of Alazar with his sudden return. To secure his position, the ruthless royal must claim the woman who was always intended to be his—even if sheltered yet beguiling Johara Behwar resists…

No matter how secretly thrilling she finds the flashes of heat beneath Azim’s icy exterior, Johara’s every instinct is to run. But Azim will not be denied, and as he shows his virgin bride how intoxicating their wedding night could be, Johara soon finds herself enticed to surrender to the sultan!

About the author:

Kate Hewitt has worked a variety of different jobs, from drama teacher to editorial assistant to youth worker, but writing romance is the best one yet. She also writes women’s fiction and all her stories celebrate the healing and redemptive power of love. Kate lives in a tiny village in the English Cotswolds with her husband, five children, and an overly affectionate Golden Retriever.

**I was provided an advance readers copy for reviewing purposes**

(Opinion) 6+ Tips for using the Metro in DC

Visiting the capital for the first time and trying to be as eco-friendly as possible? Using the buses and trains to reduce your carbon footprint is a great choice.

Planning ahead is the key to keeping Zen on the metro. I have listed specific tips below to help you navigate your way around:

  • Have hand sanitizer at the ready: People sneeze and cough regularly, and considering the escalator rails and supports posts you will have to use, it’s always good to be prepared.

escalatorWhen using the escalator: Stand on the right, walk on the left (while you may not mind that you’re going to miss that train, for someone else it may mean the difference between making it on time or being late to work

Nothing is worse than trying to figure out where you are supposed to be headed in the midst of all of the hustle and bustle on the platform itself, or worse finding out there are delays or track work along your route at the last moment. To avoid these things happening to you visit the trip planner offered by wmata.com.

  • If you are choosing not to use the trip planner and plan to take the train, use google maps to determine which metro station is the best for your destination. For example: Most tourist’s I have seen always assume that the Smithsonian stop is the best stop for the museums, while this is not always true. As an example I have listed the following museums and the closest train stops:

Air and Space: L’enfant plaza                 Natural History Museum: Archives

Holocaust Museum: Smithsonian

  • When catching a bus: figure out which side of the road you need to be on to catch the bus going in the direction you are headed, you can use the stop id on the sign at the bus stop using wmata.com’s nextbus to see when to expect your bus.
  • Have exact change for the bus: the current fare is $1.75 for one person on the bus. Credit cards or are not accepted, and no change is given.


  • When purchasing or reloading a smartrip card at the station (buy yours here), use cash as a LAST RESORT. If the machine takes your physical money, there are forms to fill out and you may or may not get it back. If you use a credit or debit card, any charge that didn’t correctly process onto your card will be removed from your account within 3 business days.

Always try your best not to make it obvious you are a tourist. As much as the metro tries to keep it’s riders safe, there are no guarantee’s. Here are my recommendations on that front:

  • Bring a backpack and keep your camera and museum related things there.
  • Keep your Smartrip handy, not in your wallet.
  • If you must use your phone, use both hands and move toward the center of the car. NEVER stand by the door while using your phone if you are fond of it.
  • Always be aware of your surroundings. If something or someone doesn’t look right, trust your instinct and move to another car.
  • Try to aim for the train cars in the middle of the train and not the front or the back, in case of a collision.
  • Download a map of the rail system like the one below directly from wmata.com Here.

That’s all that I’ve got for today. You can find even more information on wmata’s Official Riders Guide

metro map