SUNDAY POTPOURRI: CURLING UP WITH BOOKS, ETC.

Good morning!  I love Sundays, especially now that I don’t have to “go to work” on Mondays.

I’m curled up in my office reading Book Two in Melinda Leigh’s new Morgan Dane series:  Her Last Goodbye.

 

A missing wife; Chelsea as an alternate narrator, who has been abducted and restrained in a dank container; and Morgan Dane and her partner Lance Kruger searching for her, while trying to determine who, if anyone, has taken her.  Could she have left of her own volition?  They are beginning to doubt this scenario.

I finished Book One this past week:  Say You’re Sorry (click for my review), which held me hostage throughout.

I’m in my office this morning…this is what I see from the couch where I’m curled up to read:

 

And I’m sitting here:

Tonight I am eager to watch another episode of Ten Days in the Valley, with Kyra Sedgwick, and a continuation of the story of her missing daughter.

Madam Secretary is another favorite on Sundays, along with a new episode in the Hailey Dean Mysteries on Hallmark.

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Another distraction for me this week was ordering a new clock for my office.  The one I had broke, and while I don’t actually need one, since the computer shows the time, I want one to look at and check when the computer isn’t on.

So I ordered this decorative clock, coming by mail tomorrow.

 

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This week’s wildfires just north of here have heightened my anxieties….what next?  From hurricanes in the southern parts of the states to wildfires here, we have all had more than we were expecting.  And much more than anyone deserves.

Immersing myself in books and blogging keeps me distracted…but it doesn’t really alleviate the anxiety.  We’re all sending our positive energy out there, hoping for healing and resolution.

What are you thinking about on a Sunday?  Do your thoughts take you to a place of hope and healing?

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TUESDAY POTPOURRI: CURLING UP WITH BOOKS, ETC.

A simple lunch yesterday offered the opportunity to curl up and read…and ponder what lies ahead in the week.

Currently I am reading two books, which I don’t do very often, but one is an e-book and the other is a print version.

Dangerous Crossing, by Rachel Rhys, is an interesting story about a young woman traveling from England to Australia…and how everything about her life changes before she arrives in the “promised land.”

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Then there is the light and fun romp, I’ll Have What She’s Having, by Erin Carlson, a peek behind the scenes as Nora Ephron writes and sometimes directs three of my favorite rom-coms:  When Harry Met Sally, Sleepless in Seattle, and You’ve Got Mail.

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Later today I have an appointment for a hair styling…with no color.  I wonder how that will turn out?

I am determined, however, to go natural…and avoid the skin reactions.

What does your day look like?  What new books are bringing their special joy?

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SATURDAY POTPOURRI: PLAYING…

It’s a lovely Saturday, and I’m playing around with blog headers again.  My Mickey on the right side of the header is an image I haven’t used in ages.  Normally he lives on the hearth, next to Fantasia Mickey.

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I’ve also been watching movies on my DVR, including one from the Lifetime Channel.  I don’t often watch one of those all the way through, but this one was about a writer who is struggling to produce a new hit book…and decides to plagiarize one from a fan.  It did not end well.

I’m enjoying The Burning Girl, but I haven’t gotten very far into it…because of the movies and playing with blogs.

I just downloaded Our Souls at Night, by Kent Haruf, once I learned from Mary, at Book Fan, that the upcoming Netflix movie with Jane Fonda and Robert Redford was based on this book…and that she loved it.

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I found out about the movie after watching an episode of Ellen, in which Jane Fonda was a guest.  I remember loving some movies with Jane and Robert back in the day, like Barefoot in the Park.  1967.

I also saw them together in The Electric Horseman (1979)

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Do you enjoy watching old favorite stars in new movies?  Do you have some favorites…other than Jane and Paul?  LOL.

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SUNDAY POTPOURRI: GENERAL QUIRKINESS…& FAVORITE THINGS

Good morning!  Today’s tidbits include my quirky take of the photo (above); PicMonkey has a daguerreotype frame that turns an ordinary photo into this smoky rendition.

I also did this to the same photo:  an off-center heart-shaped version.

 

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So…yesterday I had lunch with an old friend.  We were colleagues for three years when we both worked in a private foster family agency (after my retirement from the county career).  She lives in Northern California and works for State Rehab. now.

All of us were very close working together in an agency with a very authoritarian/mercurial CEO…it was us against her.  That kind of setting brings people together. We all had regular get-togethers while we were working there, and then after we each left…but now we are all scattered throughout the state.

So it was good to catch up.

Afterwards I saw The Glass Castle, which I thoroughly enjoyed.  The film flashed back and forth in time, bringing us moments in childhood interspersed with the adult scenes.  It was a riveting “true story” brought to film.  I also loved the book version, which I read before I started blogging.

 

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Last night, I watched more of Season III of The Ranch, on Netflix, which I didn’t enjoy very much at first…but now I’m riveted.  I’m not sure why.  Probably because I finally allowed the scenes with Debra Winger and Sam Elliott (both of whom I enjoy) to overshadow the silliness of Ashton Kutcher and Danny Masterson.

I’ve been watching the TV season of the new show Doubt, with Katherine Heigl…and I see that nothing is scheduled for next week, so I am guessing it is going on hiatus.  I hate when that happens, especially with a cliff-hanger ending.

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How is your weekend shaping up?  Plans?  Adventures?

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SUNDAY POTPOURRI: A DAY AT THE MOVIES…AND BINGE-WATCHING LATER….

Another day in the office.  My nook (to the right and not in the photo) is where I spend a lot of time, but I can turn and see the room (above), including the TV playing.

I just got an e-mail reporting that Offspring has a new season…No. Six, available on Netflix.  I loved that Australian show about an OB/Gyn and her various family/love interests.  She and her sister have issues, her family is dysfunctional, her love interests cause problems…and, in general, it kept me watching through the previous 5 seasons.

 

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Last night I started a new Netflix show, Gypsy, with Naomi Watts and Billy Crudup.  I’m enjoying it so far.  It is about a therapist who develops dangerous and intimate relationships with the people in her patients’ lives.

 

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Before I start binge-watching, though, I must remember my earlier plan to see The Hero at the theater, even though I’m making excuses not to go, since it is not at my neighborhood theater.

 

The other theater is not that far away, but there is no restaurant nearby, and that is part of my movie-going experience:  appetizers, drink, and movie.

But if I wait, it may not come to my neighborhood, and then I’ll miss it.  Sigh.

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Meanwhile, I’m reading The Bookshop at Water’s End, my e-ARC from NetGalley.  I’ve enjoyed what I’ve read so far.

 

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Now…all I have to do is finish up a few things, get ready to go, and forget about my movie-going obsession that requires a certain pattern to the event.   Let’s go!

What is your day bringing you?

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SUNDAY POTPOURRI: CHANGING THE INTERIORS….

After a couple of unsettling weeks, with skin conditions and waiting for my new flat screen TV for the office, I can finally curl up on my comfy couch in this room…to watch DVDs, some ancient VHS tapes, and even read. Right now I’m watching the Hallmark channel in the background as I type.

 

You may notice that I have re-purposed some of my items…the white table on which the TV is perched (previous dining table) and underneath, a little side table that once resided in the living room next to the loveseat.  It holds the VCR/DVD player, which is definitely a thing of the past…but I like a few of those old movies.

In my bedroom, I have set up the quirky end table that once held the office TV equipment…it can be useful for when I bring my laptop into the bedroom to watch Netflix, etc., and it also holds stacks of books I’ve read and loved.  I had moved the end table into the garage, but then thought:  maybe it could work in my bedroom!

 

Speaking of “re-purposing,” after I moved the white dining table into the office, I had room for this chair next to my sofa table, and with a view of the Coca Cola dining table.

 

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After I curl up for a while watching old movies, I hope to start reading The Swallow’s Nest, by Emilie Richards, a review book.

 

 

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Three women fight for the chance to raise the child they’ve all come to love 

When Lilia Swallow’s husband, Graham, goes into remission after a challenging year of treatment for lymphoma, the home and lifestyle blogger throws a party. Their best friends and colleagues attend to celebrate his recovery, but just as the party is in full swing, a new guest arrives. She presents Lilia with a beautiful baby boy, and vanishes.

Toby is Graham’s darkest secret—his son, conceived in a moment of despair. Lilia is utterly unprepared for the betrayal the baby represents, and perhaps more so for the love she begins to feel once her shock subsides. Now this unasked-for precious gift becomes a life changer for three women: Lilia, who takes him into her home and heart; Marina, who bore and abandoned him until circumstance and grief changed her mind; and Ellen, who sees in him a chance to correct the mistakes she made with her own son, Toby’s father.

A custody battle begins, and each would-be mother must examine her heart, confront her choices and weigh her dreams against the fate of one vulnerable little boy. Each woman will redefine family, belonging and love—and the results will alter the course of not only their lives, but also the lives of everyone they care for.

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I do enjoy a good custody battle!  The book is hefty, with 496 pages, so I will be savoring it.

What does your weekend look like?  Do you enjoy making changes in your interiors?  Do the changes make you look at your world a little differently?

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TUESDAY POTPOURRI: BOOKS, NETFLIX, ETC.

My coffee table stack of books is dwindling.  Even as I read more of my books purchased from Pippa, my Kindle, I am also focused on some of these hardcover books.

Reading more than one book at a time has helped…and it works for me if the genres are different, or even just the formats.

I Found You, by Lisa Jewell, is a book I’ve had since August 2016, so it would count on my current Read the Books You Buy Challenge.

Even though the book has just been released (today) on Amazon, I picked it up months ago.  I don’t know where, since it wasn’t from Amazon.  One of life’s mysteries.

I am reading an e-book from the author, Maria Murnane, received in February 2017:  Wait for the Rain.

 

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Another new book, downloaded today, will be one of my soon-to-read books:  The Red Hunter, by Lisa Unger.

 

 

Claudia Bishop’s perfect life fell apart when the aftermath of a brutal assault left her with a crumbling marriage, a newborn daughter, and a constant sense of anxiety about the world around her. Now, looking for a fresh start with a home restoration project and growing blog, Claudia takes on a crumbling old house—one that unbeknownst to her has an ugly history and may hide long buried secrets.

For Zoey Drake the defining moment of her childhood was the horrific home invasion murder of her parents. Years later, she has embraced the rage that fuels her. Training in the martial arts has made her strong and ready to face the demons from the past—and within.

Strangers to each other, and walking very different paths in the wake of trauma, these two women are on a collision course—because Zoey’s past nightmare and Claudia’s dreams for her future take place in the very same house. As Zoey seeks justice, and Claudia seeks peace, both will confront the monsters at the door that are the most frightening of all.

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On Sunday, I mentioned my need to clear the patio of dead leaves, etc.  Even though I wanted to put it off, I went out and did it.

There are still some new leaves that have fallen since then, but I don’t mind those as much as the ones the gardeners blow in with their equipment!

 

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So…yesterday I stayed home all day, even though I wanted to go to the post office to check the mail, pick up some groceries, etc.

But today I’m all ready to go!  Shower done, hair fluffed, and feeling energized.

Last night, I enjoyed Better Call Saul, but I wish they would get rid of that annoying Chuck!  He is so mean to “Jimmy,” who will become Saul.  It can’t happen soon enough for me!

Do any of you watch that show?  After Breaking Bad, I was intrigued by these characters and their life before that show.

I’ve added a new show on Netflix:  Girl Boss.  I haven’t watched it yet.

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With all the Netflix, Amazon Prime, and other shows on TV, it’s amazing that I read at all!  What vies for your attention?

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SUNDAY POTPOURRI: READING, TV SHOWS, & MOVIES….

It’s time to share thoughts about Sunday.  Once upon a time, when I was still working my “career job,” I didn’t like Sundays that much.  Mostly because Mondays followed.  And Mondays were also on my “not so favorite” list.  But now I love Mondays, too.

Nowadays, I enjoy Sunday night TV shows, like Madame Secretary, and currently, Feud:  Bette and Joan.

The Good Wife was a favorite Sunday show until it ended.  But now we have The Good Fight, a show that streams on CBS: All Access.  Today’s episode was the final one for the first season.  Waiting for Season II (yes, it was renewed) will be challenging.  Luckily there are other shows that come along.

 

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My other favorite things to do on Sundays, besides reading, are various Netflix shows and movies on my DVR.  Last night I watched an older movie, with Renee Zellwegger, called Miss Potter.  A sweet story based on a real person, Beatrix Potter.

This weekend, I watched some movies on Amazon Prime, too, like Miss Sloane.  Jessica Chastain is someone worth following.

Check out last week’s reading on my Weekly Updates post.

My blog changes brought about two new headers this week:

An Interior Journey

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Curl up and Read

 

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I can’t seem to leave my blogs alone!

What is your day like?  What are your favorite things?

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THURSDAY POTPOURRI: ANOTHER LATE NIGHT….

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Yesterday was all about tending to me, beginning with that massage at my daughter’s salon.  It was great, and we will now have a regular treatment on the days of my hair styling.

Feeling “rejuvenated” at Rejuvenations, I had some dinner out…soup, wine, cornbread.

 

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I continued reading Always, by Sarah Jio, (a NetGalley review – 2/7/17), and later finished it at home. (Click title for my review).

 

 

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But it was late when I finished reading…and then I watched Too Close to Home from my DVR…and fell asleep on the couch!  It is pretty comfy, but not as cozy as my bed.  Did I undo that massage?  LOL.

 

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What next?   So far this week, I’ve read two review books and one from my own shelves (Kindle).  So I have selected one that has been hanging around since November…which means it is new enough to count for the Read the Books You Buy Challenge – 2017.

So far this year, I’ve read and reviewed FIVE books that qualify there.

So…onward.  Never Alone, by Elizabeth Haynes, is a psychological thriller that is a brilliantly suspenseful and shocking story in which nothing is at it seems, but everything is at stake.

 

 

never-alone

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Sarah Carpenter lives in an isolated farmhouse in North Yorkshire and for the first time, after the death of her husband some years ago and her children, Louis and Kitty, leaving for university, she’s living alone. But she doesn’t consider herself lonely. She has two dogs, a wide network of friends and the support of her best friend, Sophie.

When an old acquaintance, Aiden Beck, needs somewhere to stay for a while, Sarah’s cottage seems ideal; and renewing her relationship with Aiden gives her a reason to smile again. It’s supposed to be temporary, but not everyone is comfortable with the arrangement: her children are wary of his motives, and Will Brewer, an old friend of her son’s, seems to have taken it upon himself to check up on Sarah at every opportunity. Even Sophie has grown remote and distant.

After Sophie disappears, it’s clear she hasn’t been entirely honest with anyone, including Will, who seems more concerned for Sarah’s safety than anyone else. As the weather closes in, events take a dramatic turn and Kitty too goes missing. Suddenly Sarah finds herself in terrible danger, unsure of who she can still trust.

But she isn’t facing this alone; she has Aiden, and Aiden offers the protection that Sarah needs. Doesn’t he?

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I am eager to get into it!

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It is Thursday already, and, of course, tomorrow will be a wasted day for me (televised Inauguration), so I may have to check out the movies playing.

20th Century Women is in limited release, and only has two showings at the neighborhood theater.  I need to get over there soon!  Annette Bening, Elle Fanning, Greta Gerwig, Billy Crudup…to name a few.

 

20thcenturywomen***

There is also La La Land…but I’m not sure about it.

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So…that’s my Thursday…how are your week (and weekend) shaping up?  Books, movies at home, movies elsewhere?

I’m linking this post up to Saturday Snapshots, at West Metro Mommy Reads.

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SUNDAY POTPOURRI: A RAINY DAY OF READING, ETC.

october-morning-sunday-potpourri

A windy rain has been blowing through these parts, starting yesterday.  I was out then, having lunch with my second son, my two granddaughters, and my daughter, along with her husband.  We had to run through the downpour and the puddles afterwards.

So today is all about curling up and staying warm.

After blogging a little, I decided to watch some Amazon videos while I ate lunch.

Earlier, I found an e-book from an author I’ve enjoyed, so I had to “click, buy.”  Yes, it is a habit.  Never Alone, by Elizabeth Haynes, is a brilliantly suspenseful and shocking story in which nothing is at it seems, but everything is at stake.  I discovered it on Cleopatra Loves Books.  I often find books I must have on her blog.  Thanks!

 

 

never-alone

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Sarah Carpenter lives in an isolated farmhouse in North Yorkshire and for the first time, after the death of her husband some years ago and her children, Louis and Kitty, leaving for university, she’s living alone. But she doesn’t consider herself lonely. She has two dogs, a wide network of friends and the support of her best friend, Sophie.

When an old acquaintance, Aiden Beck, needs somewhere to stay for a while, Sarah’s cottage seems ideal; and renewing her relationship with Aiden gives her a reason to smile again. It’s supposed to be temporary, but not everyone is comfortable with the arrangement: her children are wary of his motives, and Will Brewer, an old friend of her son’s, seems to have taken it upon himself to check up on Sarah at every opportunity. Even Sophie has grown remote and distant.

After Sophie disappears, it’s clear she hasn’t been entirely honest with anyone, including Will, who seems more concerned for Sarah’s safety than anyone else. As the weather closes in, events take a dramatic turn and Kitty too goes missing. Suddenly Sarah finds herself in terrible danger, unsure of who she can still trust.

But she isn’t facing this alone; she has Aiden, and Aiden offers the protection that Sarah needs. Doesn’t he?

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On another blog, Readerbuzz, Deb shared some nonfiction books she enjoyed, which led to me adding another one to my “must buy” list.

White Trash, by Nancy Isenberg, is one I ordered in hardcover, so it will arrive via mailbox.

 

 

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Surveying political rhetoric and policy, popular literature and scientific theories over four hundred years, Isenberg upends assumptions about America’s supposedly class-free society––where liberty and hard work were meant to ensure real social mobility. Poor whites were central to the rise of the Republican Party in the early nineteenth century, and the Civil War itself was fought over class issues nearly as much as it was fought over slavery. Reconstruction pitted poor white trash against newly freed slaves, which factored in the rise of eugenics–-a widely popular movement embraced by Theodore Roosevelt that targeted poor whites for sterilization. These poor were at the heart of New Deal reforms and LBJ’s Great Society; they haunt us in reality TV shows like Here Comes Honey Boo Boo and Duck Dynasty. Marginalized as a class, white trash have always been at or near the center of major political debates over the character of the American identity.
 
We acknowledge racial injustice as an ugly stain on our nation’s history. With Isenberg’s landmark book, we will have to face the truth about the enduring, malevolent nature of class as well.

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So much to ponder, with this second book; and a good mystery will always keep me turning the pages.

What are you reading/watching on a Sunday?

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