Audiobook: An Anonymous Girl

An Anonymous Girl
Pictured: Book Cover of “An Anonymous Girl” showing two blurred female faces, predominantly red.

by Greer Hendricks and Sarah Pekkanen 

This is a psychological thriller.  It is told by not one, but two narrators.  The reader hears the thoughts and spoken words of both main characters – Dr. Lydia Shields, psychiatrist, and psychological study participant  Jessica Farris, initially known as Subject 52.

Jessica,  is a makeup artist who is struggling to make ends meet.  She finagles her way into a psychological study about ethics and morality.   The creepiness begins right away.  Not only is the scenario fraught with irony, mischief, and deceit, but the reader gets the immediate sense that the subject is secretly being watched.  Just a sense; we are not really sure.

There is intrigue, long-held secrets, seduction, marital discord, mayhem, murder, and suicide.  There are lies, deceptions,and plot twists.  It is all here.

I love a tightly woven psychological thriller.  Yes!  It is here.


Choice Magazine Listening – and it is FREE

Choice Magazine Listening (CML) is a nonprofit organization that provides audio recordings of memorable articles, stories, interviews, essays and poems from outstanding current magazines, completely free of charge, to blind, visually impaired, physically disabled or dyslexic adults in the United States.  Based in Port Washington, NY, CML has proudly served the blind and print-disabled community since 1962.

Every winter, spring, summer and fall, thousands of eligible people in the United States receive Choice Magazine Listening in a specialized format exclusively for use by people with disabilities.  The special digital talking-book player needed to listen to CML is provided, free of charge, by the National Library Service for the Blind and Physically Handicapped, Library of Congress.  The player is portable, extremely easy to use, and offers outstanding sound quality.  These audio selections will not play on just any computer, phone, or portable player because special formatting is required for them to work.  If you are already a member of the National Library Service, then you are well on your way to even more interesting reading.

New recordings are made available four times a year.  All eligible people can download complete and unabridged selections from the CML website or, by choice, have a digital cartridge mailed to them.

For more information, please visit their website.  While you are there, sign up for their newsletter.  Enjoy!

Choice Magazine Listening

FREE from National Braille Press

National Braille Press is offering:

The Declaration of Independence and Constitution of the United States in one volume. UEB  Braille.  And it is FREE!   Just click on the following link and fill out the form.

Declaration of Independence and Consitution

Happy 4th of July!

6 Best Uses for Dawn Dish Detergent

DIY Dawn Cleaning
Pictured: DIY Shower Cleaner, bottle of Dawn dish detergent, and DIY All Purpose Cleaner.

Original blue Dawn has so many uses. It has been tried and tested and proven to be safe and effective.  For people who are blind or visually impaired, it is best to minimize the toxic cleaners we think we need in order to keep our homes clean and manageable.  Of course, this is best for everyone, not just the VIP community. Instead of a shelf full of assorted bottles and jars that can be harmful and confusing, try paring down your cleaning supplies with a few very effective nontoxic cleaners.

Remember to label all of your bottles containing homemade cleaning products.  Use a bold indelible (permanent) marker and/or a braille label maker.

Be safe and save money!

1.  All Purpose Cleaner

Keep a bottle of all purpose cleaner handy.  Wipe fingerprints from walls and dirt and spills from tile floors.  It is great for removing grease and scum from kitchen cabinet doors and hardware, and cooktops too.

Spray all purpose cleaner in pots and pans after cooking and let stand while you enjoy your dinner.  Then wash pots and pans as usual, but with amazing ease.

Ingredients – Fill a spray bottle with 1/3 Dawn, 1/3 distilled vinegar, and 1/3 water. For more difficult jobs, spray and let stand for 10 minutes, then wipe clean.  Note: Vinegar does not behave on stone (porous) countertops including marble, granite, etc., so use Dawn without vinegar on such surfaces.

2.  Carpet spot cleaner

Apply a few drops of dish detergent to the soiled carpet area. Scrub with brush, even an old toothbrush. Let stand for 5 minutes or so. Rinse with just a little clear water. Blot dry.

3.  Shower and bath cleaner

Prepare all purpose cleaner as above.  Spray down shower walls, bathtub surfaces, and especially faucets.  Let stand for a few minutes.  Then rinse and wipe clean.  I leave a filled spray bottle in the shower and spray faucets and known problem spots at the beginning of the shower.  At shower’s end, I just wipe clean.  The shower practically cleans itself.

4.  Ice Pack

Fill a good quality zippered sandwich bag ¾ full with Dawn.  Remove excess air.  Place in freezer. This DIY ice pack will be soft and malleable and will remain cold longer.

5.  Clean your eyeglasses

Just place one drop of Dawn on each eyeglass lens, rub with fingertips over both sides of the lenses, and rinse clean.  Dry with a microfiber cloth.

And my favorite…

6.  Unclog the toilet

Pour about a cup of Dawn dish detergent into the clogged toilet bowl.  Let stand for about 15 to 20 minutes.   Then flush.  Repeat if necessary, but it probably won’t be necessary.


7.  Bug spray

Fill a spray bottle with water and add just about 2 teaspoons of Dawn.  Shake.  Spray directly on targeted insect.  Bugs do not die instantly, but still quickly.


Do you have a favorite Dawn dish detergent DIY?  Please share.  We would all be happy to hear about it.


Crochet Caddy

This simple crochet project helps to keep all of your crochet accessories in one place.  It is portable, pretty, and handy.  It requires only some leftover yarn.

Are you thinking gift yet?

Crochet Caddy 3
Pictured:  Crochet Caddy in a solid forest green color. It is about 5 inches wide and 10 inches tall. It is held closed by a small strap with a decorative 1-inch diameter white button.
Crochet Caddy
Pictured:  Crochet caddy in open position. The inside is in view. It measures approximately 11 inches wide and 10 inches tall.  Two stitch markers are in place on the upper left and a small scissors is tied in place next to them.    Three threaded embroidery needles are in place on the upper right.  Seven crochet hooks are held in place by weaving them vertically through the crochet fabric.


A longhand pattern for newbie crocheters and for ease of access with screen readers is available.  Click on the link that follows:

Crochet Caddy – longhand pattern

You Must See This

Do you see what I see?  Can you see what you can’t see?  What is it, and how do you know?

Visual impairment is a spectrum.  It is seeing something between all and nothing.

The following video gives first hand information about what some blind and visually impaired people see.

What do you see?

Audiobook – Educated: A Memoir

By Tara Westover

Educated: a Memoir
Pictured: Book cover for Educated: a Memoir – showing a well-sharpened pencil point.

Everyone has a story.  I enjoy reading memoirs because it is always a long, hard look into someone else’s unique life. This memoir is striking.

Tara Westover is the youngest of seven children. The family lives on a mountain in Idaho.  It is remote, sparsely populated, no telephone, no schooling.  The government is the enemy, the medical world is the enemy.  Y2K is approaching and that will surely be the end of the world – unless you are prepared.  Even the youngest work the junk yard, finding what they need for survival, and for their livelihood.

There is recklessness beyond words, numerous near-death experiences, accidents that defy survival, and love that looks like anything but.

Where they come from and what they achieve in a world of chaos is unfathomable. This is Tara’s story. Be prepared to wallow in the muck, wander fearlessly, experience physical and mental torture, and search for love.

This book leaves me with a lot of questions and a lot of food for thought. For instance, I would like to hear from the medical community about how people (yes more than one in this family) can experience brutality, suffer brain injuries and other severe medical injuries, yet can survive, with no medical attention, and even return to normal living, or at least what is normal for them.  I would like to hear from psychologists and sociologists to explain how people can live in the type of environment that was described and emerge financially successful.   Three of the seven children were reported to succeed educationally at the doctoral level without any educational foundation whatsoever, while four of the children remained uneducated and immersed in the lifestyle of their upbringing.  Perhaps I just want to hear from other readers!

Be warned, all who enter. This is not an easy story to read.