MONDAY POTPOURRI: ANOTHER DAY OF MUSING…

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAIt’s time to muse!  Join Jenn and the gang at Books and a Beat.

Here are some topics:

 

  • I’m currently reading…
  • Up next I think I’ll read…
  • I bought the following book(s) in the past week…
  • I’m super excited to tell you about (book/author/bookish-news)…
  • I’m really upset by (book/author/bookish-news)…
  • I can’t wait to get a copy of…
  • I wish I could read ___, but…
  • I blogged about ____ this past week…

THIS WEEK’S RANDOM QUESTION: What’s your most favorite “chunky” book? (over 500 pages)

***

I finally started reading Flight Patterns, by Karen White, which I’ve had for a while…but for whatever reason, other books got ahead of it in the queue.

 

 

cover resized

The New York Times bestselling author of The Sound of Glass and coauthor of The Forgotten Room tells the story of a woman coming home to the family she left behind—and to the woman she always wanted to be…

***

Sometimes going home is painful, but it can also be a healing time.  I have always enjoyed Karen White’s books, since the very first ones I read a few years ago, the Tradd Street books.

Have you read her?  What did you think?

***

Liberty is standing guard over my bookshelves….she is my mascot.

 

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA***

HUMP DAY POTPOURRI: THE EXTERMINATOR IS COMING!

june 9 coffee & blogging, etc.

It’s Hump Day, and I’ve been visiting blogs and enjoying my coffee.  I’ll be vacating the premises soon, as the Exterminator is coming to spray.  Even though I only SAW two crickets in the past few weeks, I heard a chorus of them in the laundry room.  So…that’s it, guys!

He’ll arrive some time between 8:00-11:00 a.m., and then I will have to leave for a few hours.  Luckily, I have books to read….and an appointment with my stylist daughter, Heather.  The bear, below, sits at her station.  I haven’t named the bear, which I gave her for graduation….which is odd, right?  What does she look like to you?  Holly?

 

heather's bear

***

On Monday, I got my carpet cover from Amazon.  It was delivered on Saturday, but since the post office closed at 2:00, I wasn’t able to retrieve it.  It was easy to move the stuff out of my nook and slide it in.  I am happily rolling around on the slick surface.

I’m reading One True Loves, by Taylor Jenkins Reid, and enjoying it.

 

 

41G6F4l0BdL._SX320_BO1,204,203,200_

***

On Netflix, I am addicted to a series that is new to me:  The Last Tango in Halifax is a British show that I love.  The protagonist is played by Sarah Lancashire, who also starred in Happy Valley,  another engaging series.

I am on Season 3, with only four episodes left, and I’m already missing these characters!  Their lives are so messy, they are so flawed, but I love them all!  Except maybe the ex-husband to Caroline (below), who hangs around with hangdog eyes.

 

 

sarah

***

This sweet couple (below) meet again after 60 years, and realize they never stopped loving each other.  But they also face many challenges.

 

 

sweet couple in halifax

***

So now I must get ready to gather my things about me and vacate…once the exterminator arrives!

More later!

***

 

A POTPOURRI OF CELEBRATORY MOMENTS

olympus-epl5-camera-0-logo

Welcome to our regular feature, Saturday Snapshot, our opportunity to showcase photos we or friends and family have captured.  The event is now hosted by West Metro Mommy Reads.

Today’s snapshots bring the Thanksgiving holidays to us.  On the actual holiday, I celebrated with my daughter, her BF, and his family.

 

Heather and David - post dinner - nov 26

***

Our hosts had their Christmas tree up already!

 

Thanksgiving nov 26 - tree

***

Then, on the weekend, I celebrated at a neighborhood restaurant with my second son, Brett; his daughter Aubrey; and two other grandchildren, Dominic and Fiona.  They each brought a friend.

Below…a collage of the two events.

 

PicMonkey Collage-Thanksgiving collage - 2015

***

Then, in a Northern part of the state, my son and his wife celebrated…and here is a photo of him on the beach at sunset.

 

Chris on beach in nov 2015- sunset

***

Soon it will be Christmas…and even though I have my minimal decorations up, I’ll save those photos for another day.

What are you sharing today?

***

FRIDAY POTPOURRI: BOOK BEGINNINGS/THE FRIDAY 56 — THE K-FROST CAPER

4-30-curlupandread-001-framed-book-beginnings2friday 56

Welcome to some bookish fun today as we share Book Beginnings, hosted by Rose City Reader; and as we showcase The Friday 56 with Freda’s Voice.

To join in, just grab a book and share the opening lines…along with any thoughts you wish to give us; then turn to page 56 and excerpt anything on the page.

Then give us the title of the book, so others can add it to their lists!

If you have been wanting to participate, but haven’t yet tried, now is the time!

What better way to spend a Friday?

Today’s featured book is a review book called The K-Frost Caper, by James Blakley.

 

 

81uqT8Li2NL._SL1500_

 

Beginning:  (Prologue)

The late January sky melted into pink and orange air that flickered below increasing layers of lavender clouds.  When the last drops of daylight finally dripped into the Atlantic, the vast ocean shimmered like one big sapphire.

***

56:  “Perhaps a demonstration of my harmonious blend of extra sensory insight and real world awareness will convince you, Ms. Nightcrow?”  Burroughs closed his eyes and reached for something unseen.

***

Blurb:  A cold case heats up when Kelvin Frost, believed to have drowned in Alabama, returns from the dead to apply for more life insurance. Or has he? When a body-a dead body-identified as Kelvin Frost, turns up in Miami, murder complicates matters. Enter Luna Nightcrow, the insurance fraud investigator whose “smartphone never sleeps.” After recovering a valuable Cherokee relic, Nightcrow accepts Charmed Life Mutual Insurance’s offer of $50,000 to sniff out and close down the K-Frost Caper. But it won’t be easy with so few leads or clues. That doesn’t surprise Luna. After all, when is the last time anyone saw Frost … in Miami?

***

What do you think?  I’m intrigued….I hope you will come on by and share your own features and links.

***

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

***

 

NEW YEAR’S EVE POTPOURRI: A COZY EVENING AT HOME

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

I’ve brought home the snacks, I have gathered up some books and movies, and I am ready!

My quiet New Year’s Eve at home has begun.  Earlier I was watching shows on my DVR and reading a little.  I also spent some time on my blogs, creating pages for 2014 at Curl up and Read and joining another Challenge.

I now have signed up for two:  Mt. TBR Challenge and Southern Literature Challenge.  I also wrote my Year End Report, and listed my Favorite Reads of 2013.

Earlier in the week, I packed up the Christmas stuff and revamped my living space.

 

A New Look in the Dining Area
A New Look in the Dining Area

 

 

View from the Kitchen
View from the Kitchen
Another View
Another View

 

Check out An Interior Journey to read about the first book of the year event, hosted by Book Journey.

In the next few days, I will be reading several books…but I’ll also be waiting for these books in the mail:

 

A Circle of Wives, by Alice LaPlante

 

18114494

 

Clever Girl, by Tessa Hadley

 

18090111

 

Golden State, by Michelle Richmond

 

81PNtKqQyUL._SL1500_

 

***

There are more, too, but I’ll share about them later.

What are you looking forward to in the New Year?  Books, getaways, resolutions?  What makes it all like a clean slate for you?

 

***

 

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

 

 

 

 

MONDAY POTPOURRI: MUGS, DISHES, ETC.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Another mug of coffee today….nestled next to my Halloween/Thanksgiving decor.

Ever since I gave my Coca Cola dinnerware to my daughter, I have been rediscovering my other dishes.  Like the one above, which is Franciscan’s Apple.

I used to have Franciscan’s Desert Rose, but grew tired of it…and gave the set away when I moved here.  I don’t even have any photos of my set, but here are some images from online:

FNDERO_5pieceX

Here are some candle holders that I still have:

2600

And these salt and pepper shakers:

mJcisqV87w8zPn3R6hbHpEA

Now that I see them…I almost regret giving them away!

But there are many colorful substitutes…and here’s something I like seeing in the mornings:

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

The matching mug:

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Do you have favorites dishes, collectibles, or other potpourri that make your day cheerful?

TUESDAY POTPOURRI: INTROS/TEASERS — THE GLASS WIVES — JUNE 11

y8ekqo13031746531

 

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

 

Welcome to another Tuesday celebrating bookish events, from Tuesday/First Chapter/Intros, hosted by Bibliophile by the Sea; and Teaser Tuesdays hosted by Should Be Reading.

My selection today is The Glass Wives, by Amy Sue Nathan.

81psDP1X3OL._SL1500_

Intros/Beginning:

Evie picked up a small, silver-framed photo and wiped away invisible dust.  The groom towered over the groomsmen, his hair windblown without any wind, his smile slightly askew, big blue eyes staring and pensive.  She knew it all too well, but the tug of familiarity was not deja vu.  Evie had been there before, decades earlier, with the same groom.  But in this picture she was not the bride.

No one noticed Evie put back the photo or swish her hand on her pant leg, pretending now to wipe off the nonexistent dust.  She walked through the crowd toward the floor-to-ceiling window.  No one noticed her do that, either.  Burgundy velour curtains tied back with thick, black tassels framed a six-foot, imitation pine tree.  Hallmark ornaments masquerading as heirlooms dangled from its branches.  Gold tinsel fringe and shiny red balls sparkled.  It all seemed out of place, yet Evie knew it belonged.  Probably more than she did.

***

Teaser:  Laney saw the world in black and white.  Right and wrong.  Good and bad.  Evie’s life was shades of gray.  Like her hair.  (p. 6)

***

Amazon Blurb:  Evie and Nicole Glass share a last name. They also shared a husband.

When a tragic car accident ends the life of Richard Glass, it also upends the lives of Evie and Nicole, and their children. There’s no love lost between the widow and the ex. In fact, Evie sees a silver lining in all this heartache—the chance to rid herself of Nicole once and for all. But Evie wasn’t counting on her children’s bond with their baby half-brother, and she wasn’t counting on Nicole’s desperate need to hang on to the threads of family, no matter how frayed. Strapped for cash, Evie cautiously agrees to share living expenses—and her home—with Nicole and the baby. But when Evie suspects that Nicole is determined to rearrange more than her kitchen, Evie must decide who she can trust. More than that, she must ask: what makes a family?

***

I felt drawn to this book as soon as I first saw it on someone’s blog.  Soon I will be reading it!  What are you spotlighting today?  Come on by and share….

 

TUESDAY POTPOURRI: INTROS/TEASERS — INSTRUCTIONS FROM A HEATWAVE — MAY 7

y8ekqo13031746531

 

teacups for teaser tuesdays

 

Welcome to another Tuesday celebrating bookish events, from Tuesday/First Chapter/Intros, hosted by Bibliophile by the Sea; and Teaser Tuesdays hosted by Should Be Reading.

My feature today is Instructions for a Heatwave, by Maggie O’Farrell, an ARC from Amazon Vine.

41AV8nGySqL

 

Intro:  Highbury, London

The heat, the heat.  It wakes Gretta just after dawn, propelling her from the bed and down the stairs.  It inhabits the house like a guest who has outstayed his welcome:  it lies along corridors, it circles around curtains, it lolls heavily on sofas and chairs.  The air in the kitchen is like a solid entity filling the space, pushing Gretta down into the floor, against the side of the table.

Only she would choose to bake bread in such weather.

Consider her now, yanking open the oven and grimacing in its scorching blast as she pulls out the bread tin.  She is in her nightdress, hair still wound into curlers.  She takes two steps backwards and tips the steaming loaf into the sink, the weight of it reminding her, as it always does, of a baby, a newborn, the packed, damp warmth of it.

***

Teaser:  He puts a hand to his brow.  Conversations with his mother can be confusing meanders through a forest of meaning in which nobody has a name and characters drop in and out without warning. (p. 33)

***

Blurb:  Sophisticated, intelligent, impossible to put down, Maggie O’Farrell’s beguiling novels—After You’d Gone, winner of a Betty Trask Award; The Distance Between Us, winner of a Somerset Maugham Award; The Hand That First Held Mine, winner of the Costa Novel Award; and her unforgettable bestseller The Vanishing Act of Esme Lennox—blend richly textured psychological drama with page-turning suspense. Instructions for a Heatwave finds her at the top of her game, with a novel about a family crisis set during the legendary British heatwave of 1976.

Gretta Riordan wakes on a stultifying July morning to find that her husband of forty years has gone to get the paper and vanished, cleaning out his bank account along the way. Gretta’s three grown children converge on their parents’ home for the first time in years: Michael Francis, a history teacher whose marriage is failing; Monica, with two stepdaughters who despise her and a blighted past that has driven away the younger sister she once adored; and Aoife, the youngest, now living in Manhattan, a smart, immensely resourceful young woman who has arranged her entire life to conceal a devastating secret.

Maggie O’Farrell writes with exceptional grace and sensitivity about marriage, about the mysteries that inhere within families, and the fault lines over which we build our lives—the secrets we hide from the people who know and love us best. In a novel that stretches from the heart of London to New York City’s Upper West Side to a remote village on the coast of Ireland, O’Farrell paints a bracing portrait of a family falling apart and coming together with hard-won, life-changing truths about who they really are.

***

I’m loving it already!  What do you think?  Come on by and let’s chat.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

 

TUESDAY POTPOURRI: A MORNING WITH BOOKS, COFFEE, & THE DVR — FEB. 19

Coffee & Books

Yesterday was one of those stay-at-home days; because of the holiday, I didn’t even go to the post office.  Just the supermarket for supplies.

But today I’m getting an early start so I can mail things.  First I’m enjoying some coffee in one of my favorite mugs.  Note the stack of books ready to go out to giveaway winners.

In my restlessness yesterday (that’s what happens when I stay at home!), I did some more rearranging of the entry/dining area space.

A View from the Front Door

In this photo below, note that the wicker loveseat is once again up next to the floor-to-ceiling bookshelf.  From the dining room, you can see the angled sofa table and the little dropleaf table where I pay bills.

Books & Bill Paying Station

Earlier I was blogging my Teaser Tuesday meme….and finding new books to add to my list.  But before that, I woke up in the middle of the night to keep reading Evil at Heart.  And then had nightmares when I went back to sleep.  EEEEK!

6193923

Now I’m going to finish watching my favorite TV shows that are on my DVR from last night:  Switched at Birth, The Carrie Diaries, Monday Morning, The Following, Deception, and Castle.  Yes…a lot of shows for one night!

I watched Dallas live.  Love that show!  Here are my thoughts about the show over at Chocolate & Mimosas, my “guilty pleasures” blog.

What is going on in your world on a Tuesday?  Busy things?  Relaxing?

 

FRIDAY POTPOURRI: BOOK BEGINNINGS & THE FRIDAY 56 — JAN. 4

4-30-curlupandread-001-framed-book-beginnings2friday 56

Welcome to some bookish fun today as we share Book Beginnings, hosted by Rose City Reader; and as we showcase The Friday 56 with Freda’s Voice.

To join in, just grab a book and share the opening lines…along with any thoughts you wish to give us; then turn to page 56 and excerpt anything on the page.

Then give us the title of the book, so others can add it to their lists!

If you have been wanting to participate, but haven’t yet tried, now is the time!

What better way to spend a Friday?

Fridays are our time to reflect on what’s ahead, like books we’ll be reading soon.

I’ve already planned out next week’s reads, and the book I’ve chosen is from that pile.

So I’m sharing from a book on my stacks called There Was an Old Woman, by Hallie Ephron (an ARC).

15818191

Beginning:  Mina Yetner sat in her living room, inspecting the death notices in the Daily News.  She got through two full columns before she found someone older than herself.  Mina blew on her tea, took a sip, and settled into her comfortable wing chair.

Wow!  I love it….and I see my future in just a few years (lol).

***

56:  Boxes were clustered near some old car batteries on the floor by the car door.  One box contained cigarette cartons.  Another was nearly full of liquor bottles.

***

Amazon Description: There Was An Old Woman by Hallie Ephron is a compelling novel of psychological suspense in which a young woman becomes entangled in a terrifying web of deception and madness involving an elderly neighbor.

When Evie Ferrante learns that her mother has been hospitalized, she finds her mother’s house in chaos. Sorting through her mother’s belongings, Evie discovers objects that don’t quite belong there, and begins to raise questions.

Evie renews a friendship with Mina, an elderly neighbor who might know more about her mother’s recent activities, but Mina is having her own set of problems: Her nephew Brian is trying to persuade her to move to a senior care community. As Evie investigates her mother’s actions, a darker story of deception and madness involving Mina emerges.

In There Was an Old Woman, award-winning mystery author Hallie Ephron delivers another work of domestic noir with truly unforgettable characters that will keep you riveted.

***

Now I’m off to see what the rest of you are sharing!