June 5 - in the nook

Good morning!  The weekend lies ahead, and I am caught up in several obsessions:  my current read, All the Missing Girls, by Megan Miranda (NetGalley); Netflix, and Orange Is the New Black; plus….more episodes of Revenge, Season III.





The weeks fly by…and then the weekends feel like a time to slow down, vegetate, and sleep late.  Of course, I never seem to sleep late, rising at my usual time, but starting the day slowly.  Maybe I’ll have coffee here, at the new set-up, now that the bench has arrived.



June 17 -weekend plans


I will certainly spend part of the day in my little office, with a cup of coffee and enjoying the sight of my fairytale figurines.  Note the two-sided stepmother/witch image on the right.



June 17 - coffee morning


Maybe I’ll set up my Netflix viewing here:



May 7 breakfast in bed with Netflix


Or…if the morning is cool, I could set up here:



may 24 another look at the patio


What possibilities are you pondering for the weekend ahead?  Enjoy!



June 5 Madeine Hatter & Coffee Cup



Anne & Heidi dolls

Yesterday, as I enjoyed my “rejuvenation” at my daughter’s salon, I scrolled through photos on my iPhone Phoebe, and found this one, snapped fairly recently.  The two dolls have taken up residence on my bed….when I’m not sleeping in it.

Raggedy Ann was a doll my mother made for my daughter Heather, who, even as I showed her the photo yesterday, shook her head.  She doesn’t want the doll.  I have several of her dolls from childhood, including the one on the right called Heidi, given to me at my baby shower before she was born.

An Annie doll is “living” in my wicker trunk in the office.  I got that one for her when I saw the play in LA, in 1980.  Below, the three dolls once sat on a bookshelf in my office nook…now my mini-office, with laptop, etc.


another office shelf - sept 29

That one is a bit more “beaten up,” (I even had to sew up some tears), so she did play with it.  But with three older brothers, she learned a lot about how to fix things, including cars, while also looking very feminine.  A tricky balance.  Below, Heather with her new guy.  In this shot, they were on a cruise, a recent adventure. 



It is probably a good thing that she and I are so different.  I always wanted the doll collection that she had and didn’t enjoy that much—except for a short period of time with her Barbie dolls—so now I have it!

The Barbie dolls and her Cabbage Patch dolls were in the attic when I packed up my house to move a few years ago…and those dolls mysteriously disappeared.  One of the “helpers” helped himself.

So…now I am rejuvenated, and have enjoyed my little traipse down memory lane.  What does your weekend look like?


This post will be linked to West Metro Mommy Reads.  Tonight and tomorrow, I’ll be spending time with granddaughter Fiona, before I take her to the train.  She’ll be in the Bay Area for a few days. (Below:  one of the “versions” of Fiona that I enjoy).  She changes up her look on a daily basis, I think.


fiona's new look - 3





Welcome to the first Saturday of 2016, in which I am eager to share tidbits and obsessions.  The doll shown above is Madeline Hatter, a part of the Alice in Wonderland collection.

I have several dolls and collectibles from this story…but most of my others are in garage bins.  I had done a major sweep through my home this past year, not purging, but gathering them up until a time when I might spotlight them again.

Madeline is a doll I got from Amazon Vine.  I usually add books from that site, but what fun it was to get something different.  And how could I be a hoarder if I didn’t buy it?  LOL

Before I spotlighted the doll, I put away all of my Christmas decorations.  I knew that my “less is more” vow this year would come in handy!  It took about five minutes to stash everything in the bins.

After collecting this doll from my mailbox, I had lunch at a neighborhood bar & grill, using one of the gift cards my three LA grandkids sent me.  They are all so grown-up now!


lunch on sat 12



salad and martini - 12


While I enjoyed my lunch, I continued reading The Black Widow, by Wendy Corsi Staub.  There is a creep factor going on in this story, which alternates between narrators.





Now I’m going to watch some movies…and perhaps I’ll take a nap.  What does your First Weekend of 2016 look like?




Welcome to another Weekend Potpourri, and the celebration of all good things that came from this week.




Today I am linking up the West Metro Mommy Reads, for Saturday Snapshots.

The purges of the past few months have been numerous, and while it may seem as if my mantra is “everything must go,” nothing could be further from the truth.  Above, note the addition of a new device:  my Blu-Ray player, on which I can now play Netflix…and down the road, my Amazon Videos.

There were a few glitches after its installation, but the AT&T service rep came out and upgraded my modem, my cables, and everything is now in great working order.  I have been bingeing on Breaking Bad every night, instead of only on the weekends.

And yesterday I took a load of books to the library….(see the bookshelf full of them in the garage):




Now my garage is purged….with bins filled with collections to store until I decide what to do with them.  And the empty bookshelves now belong to my daughter.  She hauled them away, along with all of her stuff that I had been storing!  The garage is mine again….







We are celebrating all kinds of things this weekend….last week, my granddaughter Aubrey graduated high school, with lots of fun events to top things off.  Here she is, below, with two of her brothers and her dad.  Why the lei?  Well, for a senior trip, she was off to Hawaii.  What fun, right?



My Robinson Four


The graduate - Aubrey, left


Next week, my other granddaughter Fiona will be graduating.  More pictures to come!


And before they all existed, these beautiful grandchildren, there were my three sons in this picture from 1971, five years before I also had my daughter.  Remember the snapshot of me in the mid-sixties with poofy hair?  Well, we went from that to the plainer version.



My three sons - 1971



What are you featuring this weekend?  I hope you’ll stop by and share.





Good morning!  Welcome to another Weekend Potpourri, an event that I haven’t featured in a while.

I love this teapot (above), but now it is iced tea weather here.  So it stays on its tray atop the microwave in my kitchen, while I move on to summer things.  Yes, it is technically spring, but the temperature has been creeping upwards every day.  Today the anticipated high is 86 degrees…but right now it is 69.  But give it time…it is only 9:00 a.m.!



iced tea image- resized


Yesterday I purged some more and rearranged some shelves.  Removing one whole shelf from my bedroom to the garage, along with some books to donate.  I did some initial shots over at my Bookish & Non-Bookish Saturday, but since then, I have tweaked the shelves and wall hangings a bit more.  Before, three shelves were crammed together, and now (below), you can see how it looks minus one shelf.  And with a different grouping of dolls, along with the shamrock hanging instead of the Red Hat one….



new bedroom 2 may -


Across the room (below), I have rearranged these shelves with a spillover from the one shelf…and here’s the Red Hat hanging….and atop one shelf, is the Red Hat figurine….



new bedroom may 3


Now I have two large bags of books in the garage that will eventually make it to the library…or to some other charitable organization.  I can’t believe how ruthlessly I took away the books….and some of my family photos on the shelves are in a desk drawer.


Perhaps I would feel a little angst over the books that have departed…if I took the time to examine them closely.  I did manage to keep some favorites….and that’s a good thing.

Do you find yourself purging ruthlessly?  Or do you carefully consider each book toss?  Do you enjoy rearranging your spaces?


Today I am reading another suspense thriller from Hallie EphronNever Tell a Lie.





“[A] richly atmospheric tale. You can imagine Hitchcock curling up with this one.”
USA Today


Author Hallie Ephron’s fast paced and disturbingly creepy Never Tell a Lie is a page-turning thrill ride that maestro Alfred Hitchcock would have been proud to call his own. A descent into gripping suburban terror, this stunner by the Ellen Nehr Award-winning mystery reviewer for the Boston Globe has been called “a snaky, unsettling tale of psychological suspense” by the Seattle Times. Fans of Mary Higgins Clark, Harlan Coben, and classic gothic mystery will adore this supremely suspenseful and consistently surprising story of a yard sale gone terribly wrong.


Happy Weekend!



PicMonkey Collage-cozy weekend moments

Today has been a very cozy day…and so was yesterday.  So we can appropriately dub these days as Cozy Weekend Moments.

Both days have seen me before this set-up (below) binge-watching Gilmore Girls on Netflix.





I am now on Season III.  Unlike some people, I have never watched all the episodes in all the seasons.  Until now, there were random episodes (first on SoapNet, which is no more), and then on ABC Family.  Again, currently running, but not all the episodes are shown.





Have I mentioned how much I am loving this show?  Definitely addicted.

But now I am done for the weekend…and off to continue reading Dear Daughter, by Elizabeth Little, an interesting story of a woman named Jane who was just released from prison after spending ten years inside.  Because she was released on a technicality, many believe she is guilty…still.  Her goal is to find out who really murdered her mother…if there is another possible someone.  Jane is not sure about anything at this point.






And then I am looking forward to some more favorites on tonight’s TV line-up, including The Good Wife.  Another show I am addicted to.  Yes, I have serious issues…LOL.


What has your weekend been like?  Do you have special books, movies, or TV shows you are eagerly awaiting?




Office changes - 1 - oct 9

After a flurry of purging and rearranging, my office (above) now seems like a peaceful place to hang out.

Yes, that is ONE book on my coffee table/trunk:  a review book from Vine.  I received one other book this week, but it is still hanging out on the computer table.  And I am currently reading another one, The Bookseller.





An interesting story about alternative lives…in dreams and in reality.

What does my revamped office mean?  Are my book piles banished?

Well, after much reflection, I have abandoned my Mt. TBR Challenge, unfinished.  I completed 32 out of the 36 I had promised to read…mainly because every one of the remaining unread books purchased prior to 2014 (the target of the challenge) failed to engage me.

There were only nine books left.  And all I had to do was read four more of them.  But I’m done!  No more reading of books I don’t wish to read.  No more reading challenges!

I want to focus on the NEW books on my stacks and on Sparky.  Below, note the new books I purchased or won from other blogs.  On the far right are books I purchased to reread:  Gone with the Wind, Rebecca, Uncle Tom’s Cabin, Jamaica Inn…to name a few.

On Sparky, there are quite a few.  I would like to concentrate on those as well.




I like the feeling of freedom that comes with this decision.  Who says I have to read books that no longer appeal to me?  I have a starter box in the garage where I am putting books I am done with…for the library collection drive.

Usually I only put in books I have already read…but who made that rule?

Do I seem rebellious?  As if I have gone off the rails?  Or am I finally sane?  What do you do when you are fed up with “must-reads” and obligations?



PicMonkey Collage-cozy weekend moments


How did this past week speed by so quickly?  I’m not complaining, since I love cozy weekends…but I feel robbed.  Yes, my week was an unsettling one with the Jury Duty summons lurking overhead.

However, by Thursday at 11:30, I was released and happily free!

While awaiting my fate, however, I busily created new blog headers and explored new themes.  Yes, Bloggiesta is coming again…September 18-21, and since I have sooo many blogs, I typically choose one to renovate during this event.

Last time it was Serendipity.

This time…drum roll, please:  it will be Curl up and Read.

Yes, I constantly create new headers and try new themes…but this time, I plan to go outside my comfort zone…and try a theme that I have never used.  Yes, it does make me a little nervous.

Just for practice, I tried a theme like that over at Going out on a Limb.  Check it out!  That site seems to be a great place to risk things, doesn’t it?  Taking a risk is the URL…and the theme.(Okay, after writing this post, I went back and changed the theme to a familiar one again, as I didn’t like the commenting system on the new theme.  Alas!).

But we shall see.  I already have a folder of potential headers.


Meanwhile, this month I have been going out on a limb with my reading genres, with four YA books read and reviewed so far.  Don’t think for one minute, however, that I will be ignoring my favorite go-to reads.  Just to reassure you, my current read is a book in a series I have loved that features three unlikely friends.  The House on Mermaid Point, by Wendy Wax, is a new novel from the author of Ten Beach Road and Ocean Beach, three unlikely friends who were thrown together by disaster get a do-over on life, love, and happiness . . .





Blurb:  Maddie, Avery, and Nikki first got to know one another—perhaps all too well—while desperately restoring a beachfront mansion to its former grandeur. Now they’re putting that experience to professional use. But their latest project has presented some challenges they couldn’t have dreamed up in their wildest fantasies—although the house does belong to a man who actually was Maddie’s wildest fantasy once . . .

Rock-and-roll legend “William the Wild” Hightower may be past his prime, estranged from his family, and creatively blocked, but he’s still worshiped by fans—which is why he guards his privacy on his own island in the Florida Keys. He’s not thrilled about letting this crew turn his piece of paradise into a bed-and-breakfast for a reality show . . . though he is intrigued by Maddie. Hard as that is for her to believe as a newly single woman who can barely manage a dog paddle in the dating pool.

But whether it’s an unexpected flirtation with a bona fide rock star, a strained mother-daughter relationship, or a sudden tragedy, these women are in it together. The only thing that might drive them apart is being trapped on a houseboat with one bathroom . . .


What I enjoy most about a series is the chance to reconnect with characters I love…and this series brings all of that out.  Especially if you read the first book and saw how none of them seemed likely to ever be friends.

What are you up to this weekend?  With Labor Day on the horizon, are there plans for a getaway?  Get-togethers?  Come on by and let’s chat.





Earlier this morning, I was clearing out shelves in the little book nook in my office.  It was quite a task, but now I feel good about creating a tidier nook.  Check out the Book Grabbing Event Here.

After doing that, I snapped a few photos of collections here and there in my space, like the one above.

Shortly I will go pick up the mail and hope for some new books I’m awaiting.  What?  Yes, I know I cleared out my bookshelves a bit, but that doesn’t mean I don’t eagerly await new ones.

I am waiting for Falling Into Place, by Amy Zhang, for one:




Plus An Italian Wife, by Ann Hood:




After the mailbox, Sparky and I are headed to a lunch spot we enjoy, where I plan to keep reading an exciting mystery called The Wrong Girl, by Hank Phillippi Ryan.





Then, home again to watch some movies I have saved on my DVR.  Tomorrow, I’m off to meet my daughter and friends for her birthday brunch at Campagnia’s.  What do your weekend plans look like?







PicMonkey Collage-cozy weekend moments


My mornings usually involve lots of coffee, visiting blogs, and creating new photos that spotlight the cozy moments in my life.

This past week, I finally replaced the old cordless phone/answering machine system (FOR THE NEW ONE, see above right).  It sits on its charger at night on this rolltop desk, where I pay the few bills that I don’t handle online.




Sadly, this phone (above), which served me well, was chipped…and worst of all, there was static on my calls.  So it had to be done! 

Finding a new phone involved lots of visits to Amazon pages, Best Buy, and then finally, I found the new one at Target.  I don’t think it’s as nice as the Panasonic I found on Amazon, but that one had two handsets, which I don’t need.

And then I struggled for a couple of days, adding phone numbers to the Directory.  It took a while to maneuver…again, not as user-friendly as my old Panasonic.

Now it’s done.

And I can move on, hopefully to a few more years before I have to replace it.



Speaking of devices that serve us (or no longer do!), I had a few panicky moments with the ATT receiver in my bedroom.  It froze while on the DVR…and then went to snowy screen.  I haven’t had that happen in years!

I did the usual trouble-shooting, and even called ATT.  They were scheduled to come out, but then, in desperation, I unplugged the receiver from the outlet, replugged it, and voila!  It was back in business.

This might be a temporary fix.  But for now, we’re good.

I have been considering the wireless receivers, but how would we reboot them?

I don’t love having devices rule my life.  That’s how it feels, anyway.  Even Sparky, my beloved Kindle, is part of the system of DEVICES.  And because I have had it for four years, should I be worried?

Life was simpler back in the day.  But it wasn’t as much fun…or maybe, from the perspective of this new digital age, it only seems so.

What do you think?  Do devices rule your life?  Or do they add something special?