I am a doll collector from way back. Recently I have added “rag dolls” to my collection, since many of my porcelain dolls didn’t make it to my apartment two years ago.

Here are a few favorites: Below, Piper…

And next, note Poppy and Paisley:

And now, here is Pippa:

Payton is another recent acquisition:


These are some of my favorite things these days.


Do you collect special items?



Welcome to Thursday!  I missed my Tuesday Book Release post…but I did download some books this week.  Neither was brand new, however.  That works for me as well.

First, I added Three Perfect Liars, by Heidi Perks


From the author of Her One Mistake, hailed as chilling, captivating” by New York Times bestselling author Megan Miranda, comes a riveting new suspense novel about three ambitious women whose lives are turned upside down in the aftermath of a horrifying fire, which destroys a successful advertising agency and threatens to expose a tangled web of lies.


And then I added Unfollow Me, by Charlotte Duckworth

A gripping domestic thriller examining the terrifying depths of our social media obsessions.

You can’t stop watching her.

Violet Young is a hugely popular journalist-turned-mummy-influencer, with three children, a successful husband and a million subscribers on YouTube who tune in daily to watch her everyday life unfold.

Until the day she’s no longer there.


What have you added to your shelves this week?



As I add more books to my shelves, I snap a photo and celebrate with coffee.  Especially on a Tuesday, when more new books are released.

Yesterday I received another mug.  It is on the second shelf above, but here is a closeup:

Yes, I do have another mug with the same message…on my desk (below).  You just can’t reiterate that message too many times!  (I have been accused of being a hoarder because of my book collections, lol). 

Now…on to new book releases!  I downloaded two new books today.

The Request, by David Bell

When a man agrees to do a favor for a friend, he gets more than he bargained for as he becomes embroiled in a woman’s murder in this new thriller from the USA Today bestselling author of Layover.


Friends & Strangers, by J. Courtney Sullivan

An insightful, hilarious, and compulsively readable novel about a complicated friendship between two women who are at two very different stages in life, from the best-selling author of Maine and Saints for All Occasions (named one of the Washington Post‘s Ten Best Books of the Year and a New York Times Critics’ Pick).


Today I am continuing to read my ARC The Golden Cage, by Camilla Lackberg.  It is more intense and gritty than I would have imagined from the title.  It keeps me turning the pages!  The book will be released on July 7.

An exhilarating new novel from a global superstar–a sexy, over-the-top psychological thriller that tells the story of the scorned wife of a billionaire and her delicious plot to get her revenge and bring him to his knees.


And while I was ordering bookish things, I just had to buy this tray.  To add to my reading pleasure…and for snacks.


What does your Tuesday look like?  New books?  Great reading?



Welcome to Thursday!  Today I’m on a little journey of exploration.  A different browser, since with Firefox I’m unable to comment on Blogger sites.

I finally figured out how to bookmark sites here on Google Chrome…not difficult, but it took me a minute.  I am wondering if this browser will navigate better.  When we think we are all set with a trusty tool, we sometimes realize that there are other possibilities.  Especially when we are forced to do so.

I have my usual hair styling appointment…but it’s today instead of Friday.  Then I plan to get together with my youngest son, who is down here visiting, with his wife.  Today is the anniversary of our loss of Jessica, (below right).

What a week we have had, from the huge fire that destroyed Notre Dame in Paris to other reminders of losses we have suffered. (Jessica Remembered, below).



What does your week look like?  Have any of you used Google Chrome as a browser?  Any tidbits to share?




It is Thursday, and I just finished watching the second episode of Season 3 The Good Fight.  I love this show!

Since March Madness has taken over the CBS network, I’m planning how to spend the morning and noon.  Lunch out?  I seldom do it during the week, but today seems like the perfect time.

First I’ll check the mailbox, as I haven’t gone there in a couple of days.  I’ve been waiting forever for one of my replacement credit cards. The last bit of my disastrous computer hack a month ago.

When I woke up this morning, I immediately jumped in the shower, ready to begin the day.  Usually I spend some time in PJs, but not today.

I am wearing one of my RBG T-shirts…and pants.

I think I’ll check the mailbox, and then go to CPK.  I haven’t had soup and a margarita in a while.  I’m reading The Liar’s Child.


How is your Thursday shaping up?



I am loving this book!  As I read the thoughts of the MC, I feel such a connection to her.  Not that I’m living alone in Stockholm, but that I am living alone in my own city, and experiencing some of these moments.  (From The Red Address Book, by Sofia Lundberg) – 5%.

Then on to her bedroom, and her writing corner.  To the laptop computer, which has become so important to her.  She gingerly sits down, in yet another chair resting on plastic supports.  They make the chair so high, she can barely fit her thighs beneath the desk.  She lifts the lid of the computer and hears the faint, familiar whirr of the hard drive waking up.  She clicks the Internet Explorer icon on the desktop, and the online version of her newspaper greets her.  Every day, she is amazed by the fact that the entire world exists inside this tiny little computer.  That she, a lonely woman in Stockholm, could keep in touch with people all over the world, if she wanted to.  Technology fills her days.  It makes waiting for death a little more bearable.


She could be describing my days!  I live for my time online, as I also enjoy my reading and review writing.  The connections with others keep me going.  Such inspirational moments!


How do you spend your days?  Do your times online define portions of them?



Enjoying a calm October morning, celebrating my birthday with coffee and books.  Later, I’ll join some daughters for lunch.  Yes, I have three daughters!  One bio daughter and two honorary ones.  I’ll publish photos later.

Another October birthday was celebrated by my niece Amy; hers was a couple of days ago, and her dad’s comes in two days (he is my brother, so we shared many birthday cakes over the years!).  Below, see Amy with her daughter America, who was born on 9/11/08.

Here is Amy with her hubby on their wedding day…years ago!

Her three kids, Luc, Gavin, and America, enjoying autumn:


I am powering my way through the quirks of Daphne, my new laptop.  For some reason, the cursor leaps around when I try to start typing…I will hopefully learn to deal with her!  LOL


Another October birthday:  my son Brett, below left, in a long-ago photo; on the right, see his eldest son Alec (and my first grandchild).  Note the resemblance:







At our birthday lunch, two of my “daughters” and I took some photos and enjoyed chatting about all kinds of things.






Could there be a better way to celebrate?  Now I’m watching TV and reading.



Welcome to another peek into my world.  Today I’m continuing the celebration of my #2 son’s birthday, with photos of his party last weekend.  This one was snapped in the backyard of his new home.

The backyard pool looks like a fun spot to party.

Then the party continues at the beach, with these shots – my three twenty-something grandchildren, Alec, Aubrey, and Aaron:

Here they are again, seemingly floating…

Then we see a lovely family grouping of Madeline and her two kids:

Returning to the backyard, Brett and his three kids remind us that we are celebrating a significant birthday:

Leading up to his birthday, I posted this cover photo on my Facebook page:  Middle, Brett on his fifth birthday; and right, Brett at 5 months…

Now…I have one more offspring birthday to celebrate…in November.

How do you celebrate birthdays?  Do you watch from afar, connecting primarily by text, Skype, etc.?  Or are you there in person?



Thursday is a day in the week that finds me chatting over coffee about bookish and not so bookish thoughts.  It is also a chance to ponder the weekend ahead, and plan for what to read next week.  My workstation includes a tiny little table on the right where I also stash notebooks that list upcoming review books, etc.  Minnie Mouse guards the potpourri of tidbits:

Now that I am down to two review ARCs (for October), I was actually pleased to get approval for a recent request:  a book being released on January 8, 2019:

An Anonymous Girl, by Greer Hendricks & Sarah Pekkanen.  I loved their book The Wife Between Us.

From the authors of the blockbuster bestseller The Wife Between Us comes an electrifying new novel about doubt, passion, and just how much you can trust someone.



Left of my workstation is my bulletin board, where memorabilia spotlight the moments in my life.  Top Right:  the birthday sign that reads LORRE;  it was created by my younger brother, who has a sign painting business.  That sign was “painted” in 1985, when I went by the name “Lorre.”  For some reason, I liked the spelling and the way the name looked.  The fact that I’ve had the sign for all these years, and carried it with me to five different residences, tells you a little about my sentimental attachment to things.

On the left hand side, note the announcement for an event at Dukes, a coffee house in Sacramento where my eldest son, fresh back from his time in Ireland, was showing a series of photographs.  Many of them are on the walls of my bedroom, dubbed The Ireland Room.  He now lives in Prague, where he moved in 1997. 



Sometimes our sentimental journeys take us to far-flung places.

In 2008, my eldest moved to Berlin and photographed the “art gallery” of  murals on the Berlin Wall (in 2009).  This photo (below) is one of my favorites, depicting a leap over the wall.

Another photo (below) is a special shot I love…I have used it on my blogs over the years.  I like how it depicts an escape from chains.

I had that one made into a poster, which I have framed for my bedroom.


Looking back at an array of photos that mean something to me…take a peek at one of my granddaughter Fiona (left) and two of her cousins…snapped way back in the day.  I think they were in middle school at the time.

And here is a recent photo of her:  how time flies!


Now that I’ve rambled down Memory Lane…do any of you love looking at photos and sentimental objects?  Do they take you to those places in the past? 



Good morning!  It has been another lovely week of books and my cozy surroundings.  I wrote a little about all of that over at my Coffee Chat:  Interior & Bookish Challenges.

The book above, (and below) Watching You, is on my “up next list”…and I can’t wait!

The instant New York Times and #1 Sunday Times bestselling author of the “riveting thriller” (PopSugar) Then She Was Gone delivers another suspenseful page-turner about a shocking murder in a picturesque and well-to-do English town, perfect “for fans of Gone Girl, The Girl on the Train, and Luckiest Girl Alive” (Library Journal).


Now…back to my interiors  Since I posted my “peely white” nightstand in my Coffee Chat post, I started looking around, and noticed this little gem.  It has been all over my houses, my house before and this one.  It is one of those all purpose items.  I like the look of my Coca Cola tray on it.  The wicker loveseat has been everywhere, too, and now is my perfect little “window seat,” looking out at my patio.

Last week, we saw Fiona scrubbing away at my kitchen floor, and here she is, all glammed up for something…She has a way of showing many different versions of herself, which makes her interesting, in my book.

When I am not in my office visiting blogs and reviewing books, I am usually curled up in this corner, where I can see some of my favorite things around me.  I know I’ve shown different views of that ice cream table and the cookie jars, but here you catch another glimpse of the living room side.

Here is a peek at the loveseat…and the little bookcase on the back wall.  I have some Mary Engelbreit prints there, too.

Another view of the room, with still another Mary Engelbreit print:


A few years ago, when my #2 son was working for Dick Clark Productions (late 1990s), he was on a business trip and wearing his Dick Clark Productions jacket.  He met up with two actors:  Michael Damian and Michelle Stafford (who were stars together on Y & R, playing Phyllis and Danny).  They were also headed off to do some business.  Long story short, he captured a photo of the two of them.  He also shared that his mom is a big fan.  LOL.  I’ve had the photo on my bulletin board for a while now.  You can see that photo in the center, and just above and to the right is my son with Michael Damian.  He and Michael chatted about Dick, and how Michael had been on one of his shows.

Here is a close-up of “Phyllis & Danny,” not as clear as I would like, but you get the idea.


Last night, I headed over to the neighborhood Mimi’s and had one of my favorites:  French Pot Roast, with a margarita…


So, as you can tell, I love sharing my books, my interior world, and a few of my obsessions and tidbits.

What has your week been like, and what are you eager to do next?