CEE's 2014 Thread #7 *Come as you are *

Dies ist die Fortführung des Themas CEE's 2014 Thread #6 *Come as you are *.

Forum75 Books Challenge for 2014

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CEE's 2014 Thread #7 *Come as you are *

Dieses Thema ruht momentan. Die letzte Nachricht liegt mehr als 90 Tage zurück. Du kannst es wieder aufgreifen, indem du eine neue Antwort schreibst.

Bearbeitet: Nov. 2, 2014, 10:16am

11/2/14 FIRST SNOW IS COMING - batten down the hatches! Woohoo!

Why didn't I head south with the others?

Bearbeitet: Okt. 2, 2014, 8:01am



Bearbeitet: Sept. 2, 2014, 8:39pm



#1 Rising Sea Levels by Hunt Janin 4 stars (219 pp)
#2 Shadows on the Rock by Willa Cather 4.2 stars *BOTS* (240 pp)
#3 Orphan Train: A Novel by Christina Baker Kline 4 stars (304 pp)
#4 Lupita Manana by Patricia Beatty 3 stars (192 pp)
#5 One of Ours by Willa Cather 4.5 stars *BOTS* (206 pp)
#6 Arsenic Under the Elms by Virginia McConnell 3.5 stars (288 pp)
#7 Innocence by Dean Koontz LTER book 3.5 stars (352 pp)
#8 Love Songs from a Shallow Grave by Colin Cotterill 4.2 stars (304 pp)


#9 Pilgrim at Tinker Creek by Annie Dillard 5 stars (304 pp)
#10 Cinder by Marissa Meyer 4 stars (448 pp)
#11 Dune by Frank Herbert 4.75 stars (896 pp)
#12 Scarlet by Marissa Meyer 4 stars (512 pp)
#13 The Brothers Karamazov by Dostoevsky 3.8 stars *BOTS* (796 pp)

MARCH 2014

#14 The Curse of Chalion by Lois McMaster Bujold 4.8 stars (448 pp)
#15 Grumpy Cat: A Grumpy Book by Grumpy Cat 4 stars (96 pp)
#16 Music & Silence by Rose Tremain 4.5 stars (512 pp)
#17 The Color of Lightning : a novel by Paulette Jiles 4.3 stars (384 pp)
#18 All the Pretty Horses by Cormac McCarthy (4.8 stars) (302 pp)
#19 Song of the Vikings by Nancy Brown (LTER) (4 stars) (244 pp)
#20 Fountain Filled With Blood by Julia Spencer-Fleming (3.75 stars) (320 pp)
#21 And Then There Were None by Agatha Christie (4.5 stars) *BOTS* (264 pp)
#22 The Blue Sweater by Jacqueline Novogratz (4.2 stars) (284 pp)

APRIL 2014

#23 Slightly Foxed: No. 24: A Pash for Nash by Gail Pirkis (3.7 stars) (94 pp)
#24 Lost Cat by Caroline Paul (3.5 stars) (176 pp)
#25 Song of Solomon by Toni Morrison (4.8 stars) (362 pp)
#26 Safe from the Sea by Peter Geye (4.5 stars) *BOTS* (241 pp)
#27 My Accidental Jihad by Krista Bremer (4 stars) (287 pp)
#28 Bhagavad Gita: A New Translation by Stephen Mitchell (4 stars) *BOTS* (221 pp)

MAY 2014

#29 The Great Work of Your Life by Stephen Cope (5 stars) (256 pp)
#30 Life After Life by Kate Atkinson (4.6 stars) (529 pp)
#31 Mapping the Mind by Rita Carter (4.5 stars) (215 beautiful pp)
#32 A Thomas Merton Reader edited bu Thomas P. McDonnell (4 stars) (516 pp)
#33 Selected Stories of Eudora Welty by Eudora Welty (4.2 stars) (429 pp)

JUNE 2014

#34 My Beloved World by Sonia Sotomayor (4 stars) (432 pp)
#35 Animal Wise: How We Know Animals Think and Feel by Virginia Morell (4.5 stars) LT ER (283 pp)
#36 Cat's Cradle by Kurt Vonnegut (4.5 stars) (304 pp)
#37 Little Women by Louisa May Alcott (3 stars) re-read *BOTS* (560 pp)

Bearbeitet: Jan. 26, 2015, 8:16pm


JULY 2014

#38 Crewel World by Gennifer Albin (3.8 stars) (400 pp)
#39 The Girl Who Sang to the Buffalo by Kent Nerburn (4.5 stars) (408 pp)
#40 Nine Lives to Die by Rita Mae Brown (2.5 stars) (253 pp)
#41 My Notorious Life: A Novel by Kate Manning (4.8 stars) (438 pp)


#42 Marmee & Louisa by Eve LaPlante (4 stars) (368 pp)
#43 The Secret River by Kate Grenville (4.5 stars) (334 pp)
#44 A Patchwork Planet by Anne Tyler (4.4 stars) *BOTS* (288 pp)
#45 The Dalai Lama's Cat by David Michie (4.6 stars) (241 pp)
#46 The Power of One by Bryce Courtenay (4.8 stars) (541 pp)
#47 Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki by Haruki Murakami (3.7 stars) (386 pp)
#48 Two Winters in a Tipi by Mark Warren (3.9 stars) ( 264 pp)


#49 The Art of Purring by David Michie (3.5 stars) (232 pp)
#50 The Ice Cream Queen of Orchard Street (3.8 stars) (505 pp)
#51 Refuge by Terry Tempest Williams (5 stars) (314pp)
#52 The View From Castle Rock by Alice Munro (4 stars) *BOTS* (349 pp)
#53 And There Was Light by Jacques Lusseyran (4.5 stars) (306 pp)
#54 The Innocents Abroad by Mark Twain (3.8 stars) *BOTS* (686 pp)


#55 Just One Damned Thing After Another by Jodi Taylor (4 stars)( 334 pp)
#56 All That Ails You by Mark Asher (4 stars) (215 pp)
#57 When Women Were Birds by Terry Tempest Williams (5 stars) (208 pp)
#58 The Hired Man by Aminatta Forna (4 stars) *BOTS* (293 pp)
#59 The Custom of the Country by Edith Wharton (3.6 stars) *BOTS* (413 pp)
#60 Small Wonder by Barbara Kingsolver (5 stars) (264 pp)
#61 Flight Behavior by Barbara Kingsolver (5 stars) *BOTS* (610 pp)
#62 Legend of Sleepy Hollow by Washington Irving (3 stars) (108 pp)


#63 Silence of the Songbirds by Bridget Stutchbury (4.8 stars) *BOTS* (223 pp)
#64 The Light Between Oceans by M L Stedman (4.25 stars) *BOTS* (343 pp)
#65 An Echo Through the Snow by Andrea Thalasinos (3.75 stars) *BOTS* (368 pp)
#66 Paladin of Souls by Lois McMaster Bujold (5 stars) *BOTS* (370 pp)
#67 China Dolls by Lisa See (3.5 stars) (335 pp)
#68 He Wanted the Moon by Mimi Baird LTER (4.5 stars) (250 pp)
#69 Wide Sargasso Sea by Jean Rhys (4.5 stars) *BOTS* (147 pp)
#70 The Smartest Kids in the World and How They Got That Way by Amanda Ripley (4 stars) (289 pp)
#71 Stoner by John Williams (4 stars) (305 pp)


#72 The Living by Annie Dillard (5 stars) (397 pp)
#73 A Constellation of Vital Phenomena by Anthony Marra (4.5 stars) *BOTS* (396 pp)
#74 Portrait of a Lady by Henry James (4 stars) *BOTS* (564 pp)
#75 Questions About Angels by Billy Collins (4 stars) *BOTS* (91 pp)
#76 The Cat Who Came for Christmas by Cleveland Amory (3.5 stars) (256 pp)
#77 Cat Coming Home by Shirley Rousseau Murphy (3.25 stars) (384 pp)
#78 Gilead by Marilynne Robinson (5 stars) *BOTS* (247 pp)
#79 The Walnut Tree by Charles Todd (3.4 stars) (307 pp)

Pages read to date for the year: 26,942

Bearbeitet: Dez. 27, 2014, 11:11am

2014 STATS:

total books read: 79
BOTS (books off my shelf): 23

Fiction: 52
Non-Fiction: 25
Poetry: 2

male author: 28
female author: 51

US authors: 57
authors from other countries: 22

living author: 58
deceased author: 21

Bearbeitet: Jan. 26, 2015, 8:17pm


The Living: A Novel by Annie Dillard
A Constellation of Vital Phenomena: A Novel by Anthony Marra
Portrait of a Lady by Henry James
Questions About Angels by Billy Collins
The Cat Who Came for Christmas by Cleveland Amory
Cat Coming Home by Shirley Rousseau Murphy
Gilead by Marilynne Robinson
The Walnut Tree by Charles Todd

Bearbeitet: Dez. 21, 2014, 10:11am

2014 AAC - as I plan it for now:

Jan - Willa Cather - Shadows on the Rock and One of OursEXCELLENT
Feb - Faulkner - The Hamlet QUIT !!! :PPPPP
Mar - Cormac McCarthy - All the Pretty Horses EXCELLENT
Apr - Morrison - Song of Solomon EXCELLENT
May - Welty - Selected Stories of Eudora Welty IMPRESSIVE
Jun - Vonnegut - Cat's Cradle SURPRISINGLY GOOD
Jul - Twain - Innocents Abroad - LONG BOOK - it was GOOD at times.

Aug - Roth - sub Henry James - The Portrait of a Lady SKIPPED
Sep - Baldwin - Go Tell It on the Mountain SKIPPED
Oct - Wharton - The Custom Of The Country GOOD - but not great.
Nov - Updike - The Witches of Eastwick - QUIT, YUCK, PTOOEY !
Dec - Larry Watson - Let Him Go Not in the mood.

Bearbeitet: Okt. 1, 2014, 8:39pm


A book with more than 500 pp: Dune by Frank Herbert (896 pp)
A forgotten classic: Little Women by Louisa May Alcott
A book that became a movie: All the Pretty Horses by Cormac McCarthy
A book published this year: Innocence by Dean Koontz
A book with a number in the title: One of Ours by Willa Cather
A book written by someone under 30: Pilgrim at Tinker Creek by Annie Dillard
A book with non-human characters: Scarlet by Marissa Meyer
A funny book: Grumpy Cat: A Grumpy Book by Grumpy Cat
A book by a female author: Shadows on the Rock by Willa Cather
A book with a mystery: Love Songs from a Shallow Grave by Colin Cotterill
A book with a one-word title: Cinder by Marissa Meyer
A book of short stories: Selected Stories of Eudora Welty by Eudora Welty
A book set on a different continent: The Brothers Karamazov by Dostoevsky
A book of non-fiction: Rising Sea Levels by Hunt Janin

The first book by a favorite author: The Innocents Abroad by Mark Twain

A book you heard about online: The Curse of Chalion by Lois McMaster Bujold
A best selling book: The Blue Sweater by Jacqueline Novogratz
A book based on a true story: The Color of Lightning by Paulette Jiles
A book at the bottom of your TBR pile: A Patchwork Planet by Anne Tyler
A book your friend loves: Music & Silence by Rose Tremain
A book that scares you: And Then There Were None by Agatha Christie
A book that is more than 10 years old: Song of Solomon by Toni Morrison
The second book in a series: Fountain Filled With Blood by Julia Spencer-Fleming
A book with a blue cover: The Great Work of Your Life by Stephen Cope

Sept. 2, 2014, 9:14pm

The most beautifulest pictures yet!
I want a cat face paint!

Sept. 2, 2014, 9:59pm

>9 mckait: Come to CT and visit the Farmer's Market with Bridget. She was feeling pretty lonely today with the kids back in school. I'll even find a way to join you :-)

How's that wine bottle doing? Empty yet?
Sleep well.

Bearbeitet: Sept. 2, 2014, 10:04pm

It is now. I need more......I love farmers markets!

Sept. 2, 2014, 10:21pm

Happy New Thread Claudia! Xx

Sept. 3, 2014, 12:22am

Love the picture up top! Congrats on the new thread.

Bearbeitet: Sept. 3, 2014, 1:08am

Lovely new thread, cee.

Sept. 3, 2014, 7:04am

De-lurking to say Happy New Thread, Cee!

Sept. 3, 2014, 11:12am

Congrats on the new thread, Cee! I got a kick out of that photo up top.

Sept. 3, 2014, 5:05pm

Thanks for all the visits! New threads are always fun :-)

Kath: Me too! Wish we were closer to a good one.

Ilana: Thanks xo

Kim: Thank-you, thank-you...

Roni: Nice to see you. Thanks.

Amber: Delurk anytime :-) Thanks.

Joe: Thanks - me too!

Sept. 3, 2014, 5:12pm

Great new thread, Cee!

Sept. 3, 2014, 5:22pm

Thanks, Terri!

Sept. 3, 2014, 7:21pm

Hi Cee, getting in early for your decline into summer :)
I am now looking forward to some lighter brighter days and less fretting squabbling inside-ness for my boys.

Sept. 3, 2014, 8:30pm

Happy New thread, Claudia! I love your topper. What a gorgeous family.

I really enjoy following your reading. You've done very well on the AAC. I won't get to the Baldwin, until I get back from vacation. I hope you can squeeze the Munro in, this month. What a gem that was!

Sept. 4, 2014, 8:11am

Loved to review all your books and seasonal pix - that is so nicely done!

Sept. 4, 2014, 11:10am

>20 LovingLit: With 2 little active boys, I can totally understand your desire for warmer weather and more time outside. I, otoh, am rejoicing that approaching autumn is teasing me with a few lovely fresh, cool days tucked in between the hot summer days still lingering. Ahh.... Do you get the summer off from school now?

>21 msf59: Hi Mark, Thanks... I love my "gorgeous" family! They know how to have fun.
Unfortunately, when summer hit, my progress on AAC came to a screeching halt. BUT - I'm gonna try to catch up to myself. Hoping for way more reading time coming up.
Have a great vacation!

>22 sibylline: Thanks, Lucy! There is a major error in my monthly pictures though. I wonder if you can spot it? It's been bothering me but I have no way to fix it this year. Arrrgh.

Sept. 4, 2014, 1:34pm

Thinking of you! xx

Sept. 5, 2014, 8:07am

I sure don't know which of your pictures is an error, I do know that they are all beautiful! I am including your family in that statement, as well as the picture of you on vaca in your last thread.

I am cooking a vat of chicken for Duncan. He is off carbs since I can't get the pasta he likes. I really NEED to give him some carbs to help fill him up. His diet is so expensive as it is... but I am doubling the chicken, and halving the carbs...and I am going to try something I used to do now and then, and just make him "sandwiches" with broth over. He tolerates less and less of any kibble. I have to have something to get into him in the morning, so I can give him preds, as I have to give them 2x a day now. They must be given with food. Aspirin, too. The whole thing is taxing my dietary ingenuity. sigh. Good thing he's well worth all of this trouble! lol

How are your furkids doing? So far so good here.

How is Bridget doing? I don't know how she does it, because it seems she really does it all...

It's going to be hot today, so I am trying to get stuff done before that happens. So, off I go

Sept. 6, 2014, 11:40am

Cee... my last read might be a good "Halloween" read for you?

Sept. 6, 2014, 12:29pm

>24 Smiler69: Hi Ilana! I had such a good time in Montreal. I think of you and the things we did together often... the happy thoughts keep scanning across my brain at odd times. Hope you are feeling well. I see you are sending some cool, dry weather. Thanks - but please give it an extra push to get here faster!

>25 mckait: and >26 mckait: Well, I'm not gonna say which picture is in error as I can't really correct it and I don't want anyone to think I am less than perfect in everything I do! lol Anyway, thanks for the compliments.

When it comes to a pet's senior years, it's a tough row to hoe. They give us so much pleasure and love, we put up with it. But... it's a heartbreaker. I'm sorry you have to go through all this diet and med stuff. You are a kind and loving mom to your furkids. I'm sure they take comfort in all you do for them.
Loki is Loki. Ron is away this weekend and Loki is sleeping later and acting better. ??? I think I am calmer than Ron and don't trigger interest, anxiety, duty as much so he can relax a bit.
Willow is ok. Still doing good on the pred. Good days and not so good days. She's a trooper though and keeps purring for me to keep my blood pressure down. heh.
Funny you should ask about Bridget. I'm somewhat concerned about her success. I know that may sound silly to some, but I think she is doing too much and expecting too much of herself. This has been a particularly tough week for her. With Doug starting a new job, the kids starting school, and B hiring a new employee - they are all struggling to fall into a routine that works. So far, a routine has been elusive and nerves are edgy in that house. Time should heal these upsets. I just wish I could do something to help them.

Your last book does look like a good choice for Halloween. I've been so busy I have not been looking forward more than a few days at a time. You're right though... Halloween is right around the corner. Eeesh! Thanks for the suggestion. Is the book out yet?

Today is our hot and humid day :p~ Thanks, mid-west!
At least Canada is gonna be nice to us and send cool, dry, seasonal air our way tonight. Yay!

Reading The Art of Purring and once again, loving the Dalai Lama's cat. I am Buddhist at heart. I just don't have the mind discipline to meditate for more than 2 minutes.

Sept. 6, 2014, 3:08pm

Two minutes sounds like a lot to me!

Sept. 6, 2014, 3:34pm

>28 sibylline: LOL! I didn't say it was easy ;-)

Sept. 7, 2014, 4:07pm

Hi, Happy New Thread, Sis.

It looks beautiful beginning with those girls in the topper!

Sept. 7, 2014, 4:13pm

I'm so pleased your trip here left you with good memories. Couldn't have asked for better results! I really enjoyed the times we spent together too and being able to just pick up the phone and say " be right over!" That was pretty cool, and I find myself wishing we could do more of that, but barring that, the memories are pretty good to have too, like every time I carry my Alice bag and remember you have the same one. :-)

Sept. 8, 2014, 11:13am

>30 connie53: Hi Sis!
Thanks :-)
For the third time in less than a year I am emptying out my bookcases and stacking my books here, there, and everywhere. Twice to rearrange the room and now we are getting new carpet - so here we go again! I'm excited about the new carpeting - not so much about all the extra exercise of lugging books around. Ah well. There's a cost for everything. Hoping this will do it for the next 10 years!

>31 Smiler69:
Ah, yes... my Alice bag :-) I'll be using it for the next course I signed up for in our local Senior College - "Moral Theory in the Real World". Starts Friday. Too bad it's in the morning. I imagine I'll survive. Anyway, the books we'll be reading are: Refuge by Terry Tempest Williams and Small Wonder by Barbara Kingsolver. Both look good.

Finished The Dalai Lama's Cat and The Art of Purring by David Michie. It wasn't quite as great as the first book, but I enjoyed it. (3.5 stars)

Still slogging my way through The Ice Cream Queen of Orchard Street by Susan Jane Gilman. It's a good story but the book is so long I feel like I'm living every minute of the main character's life. It could be shorter and still effective, but it's not awful. It's an ER book.

Ron comes home today after spending a long weekend in CT with family. He had a good time. Soccer games, miniature golf, laser tag, movies, walking the dogs, doing bakery dishes, and out-to-eat with the kids so parents could have date nights, etc. I imagine he'll come home exhausted -lol.

Beautiful weather today... only 14 more days till Autumn arrives :-D

Sept. 8, 2014, 11:26am

I get to use my Alice bag weekly, as I go to my library outings to drop off and/or pick up books. I had a bit of a nasty experience on my last visit this weekend, which was really a shock because my visits to our local library branch are usually a small highlight of my week; they make an exception for Coco and allow me to bring him in, so it's a nice 15 minute walk for us to get there, and the building is really nice (and old fire house from the 19th century), and the library technicians are usually so friendly. But this time, there was this new woman who was like the nasty librarian from hell, whose first comment was to question my right to have Coco there with me, and of course things could only go downhill from there. She was so unpleasant that I'm still upset by it, and somehow convinced she'll have taken steps to make sure the director—who up till now was tolerating Coco because he's so well behaved—will have changed her mind. Old witch! Anyway, this has nothing to do with the Alice bag directly, just that I happened to have it with me since I always take it with me there and needed to tell this story to someone who might be sympathetic to my plight!

Sounds like Ron's had a pretty full weekend. He'll need babying after all that!

I always look forward to taking out my cashmere sweaters when the cooler weather sets in, with the caveat that I'm always fearful to see what the latest damage the moths have wreaked on them might be...

Sept. 8, 2014, 12:01pm

Ach! That nasty librarian! If all dogs were as well behaved as Coco this would be a nicer world. I could say that about humans also. As a matter of fact, I will say it. If all humans were as well behaved as Coco this would be a nicer world. *sigh*
Did you ask the woman what days she worked so you could avoid her?
I keep my Alice bag hanging where I can see it and think of you when I do... thanks again, that was very sweet of you.

Ron gets no babying when he gets home! But, I will be glad to have him back to share the load around here. I had to go to the dump transfer station yesterday! Geesh! I didn't even know where to recycle the newspapers. The attendant could see I was out of my element. He took the trash bags from me to throw in the bin and pointed out the newspaper bin. Stressful day! lol

Loki has been sleeping till 7ish every morning (sweet boy) while Ron was away. He must know Ron is coming home today cuz he got me up at his usual 6 AM! :ppp~ and he is wanting to stay on the front porch to be on watch.

I love cashmere sweaters - but they are usually too warm for me. I've given some of them to my daughter who is always cold. I've hung on to one basic black in case the occasion ever arises that is appropriate and cool.

Bearbeitet: Sept. 8, 2014, 12:25pm

I did ask her, after she'd taken an unreasonably long time checking the documents I was bringing back (some audio CDs), and those I was borrowing (I mean, a r-e-a-l-l-y long time) and do you know what she did? She nodded her head toward another employee, indicating that I should speak to her if I wanted further information, as if she felt that answering my question was somehow objectionable. A true to form Major B****, I'm sorry to say.

I did ask that other girl, who really was, a GIRL, and who had the nerve to say she'd listened in to the conversation and found nothing about it objectionable, and it was in fact true I wasn't allowed to have my dog there (another new girl, by the way), and when I said it had nothing to do with the dog ("who by the way was allowed in there by the director herself" I made sure to add), but with the woman's attitude, who'd suddenly made a very pleasant place into a threatening and singularly unappealing one, had the nerve to say it was all in my head. She let slip then that the woman was just a temporary replacement, at which I exclaimed that the other woman had shown real ill will by not simply telling me that when I asked if she worked only on weekends. I added that she too showed ill will, for not trying to understand my point of view and simply sticking to the words that were spoken in our exchange while not attending to the attitude behind them. Then walked out on her when she started up on her inane answer back at that. Argh!

One satisfying outcome: another member who'd been present all this time came up to me once I'd left and said she didn't mean to meddle, but that she'd overheard what had taken place and that the first woman was equally unpleasant to her and she would avoid her at all cost if ever she saw her again too, and that the second girl was just some new kid there and I should probably have spoken to someone else, which was true enough. But at least it confirmed to me it wasn't all "in my head"!

eta: cashmere sweaters: I got most of mine from JCrew and on sale on top of sale. They are quite thin and I usually wear them on their own or with just a very thin layer tee underneath, so not too warm. But I know what you mean, I overheat very easily with warm clothes on too.

Sept. 11, 2014, 2:02pm

Crazy week of upheaval.
Took Mom to the DR on Tuesday and am facing the acceleration of her mental deterioration :-(
It kinda hit me like a ton of bricks all of a sudden. There are many times she can't even construct or complete a sentence. I suspect it won't be long before she forgets my name or that I'm her daughter. I've been very bummed trying to process this in the last few days. Not having much luck. Perhaps I am thinking about it too much.

Additionally, our house looks like a tornado hit it with LR furniture spewed out and smushed in everywhere else resulting in a completely barren living room. We are getting new carpeting installed. Yay - and hurry up! I want back to normal and so do the furkidz. Ron just wants his TV.

Then there's the problem almost every marriage faces at some time or other at night. One likes it hot, the other likes it cold. I have ripped the bed apart 3 times this week to try different combinations of bedding on the two sides (including dual control electric heating) to no avail. My daughter thinks we have a problem if we can't get along in a king sized bed. I just want some sleep! ugh.

Reading? It's going slow. I'm feeling moody and funky. Today is overcast, windy, rainy, and dreary. To top everything off, we had to turn the heat ON today to get up to 70 degrees inside. Why? So the new carpet will be warm and happy... easier to stretch or something. So, I'm about to fall asleep sitting up.

Can I have some cheese with my whine?

Sept. 11, 2014, 4:31pm

Oh Cee....the hot and cold running bedsides had me in stitches...we are going thru the same issues....turn the ceiling fan off/on? (Me on..him off). Open windows (me yes, him no), add extra blankets? Who the hell can tell? But you did bring a smile to me since I figure if this is the worst I'll ever have to deal with, I'll keep him.

Sorry to hear things aren't going too well with your Mom. Prayers are wafting.

Sept. 12, 2014, 1:05pm

Sweetie, sounds like things are difficult, to say the least right now. Your mom's situation alone must be really difficult to take in, and of course what you're most yearning for is the comfort of cuddling up in a cozy home so you can find a bit of solace, so it must all seem all so overwhelming. Please don't apologize for venting a bit, you need it to stay sane.

Hope the carpet settles in soon so you at least don't have to put the heating on when you'd rather keep it cool in the house. As for marriage woes of different bodies needing different temps at night, I never did marry as you know, and only briefly had to trouble with those issues, which was enough to convince me maybe I wasn't cut out for all the compromises necessary to make such a union work. I do believe this kind of situation is one of the basic reasons so many couples opt to faire chambre à part, that is, to keep separate bedrooms, which may not be an option for you, though it's not uncommon.

I hope the coming days bring you a bit of necessary relief and maybe even some laughter and good cheer? Or failing that, some comforting moments here and there.

Hugs. xox

Bearbeitet: Sept. 13, 2014, 11:46am

Oh, Cee, what a week you've had! So sorry your Mom is failing so steeply. It must be heartbreaking to see the decline. You hardly need the upheaval in your home and at your favorite place of refuge (library). Maybe you should be proactive and talk to the director, to make sure Coco is still welcome and maybe get some "proof" you can show to new employees when you visit. I know our library had to crack down on letting dogs in because of being accused of "discriminating" by letting some in and some not. Seems like things are all-or-nothing these days, but employees can be nice about how they break the news. (Actually, we got accused of "discriminating" when we asked someone for her library card to check out books, never mind that I even have to card my own husband . . .)

Sept. 13, 2014, 10:58pm

>23 -Cee-: Do you get the summer off from school now?
Well, no. That is the short answer. The long answer also includes "yes" as summer is the holidays, but its not 'now'. I have 55% worth of assessment due before Oct 14 so now all Im thinking about is getting that done. *confusing*
My work for the year finishes in mid- October (nearly Summer). And it doesn't start again til March next year! That is AGES! Summer is Dec/Jan/Feb really.

So sorry to hear about your brick wall moment with your mum, its terrifying (for me) to even think of it happening that way. My rational mind has advice for you but we all know this kind of grieving isn't really (and doesn't have to be) rational. Take care of you too (((hugs)))

Sept. 15, 2014, 12:44pm

Oh Claudia, I hope you're doing ok... you're in my thoughts in any case. Hugs and xoxo.

Sept. 15, 2014, 12:59pm

>35 Smiler69: and >38 Smiler69: Hi Ilana,
Oy. I've been 'out of it' for awhile.
It's a real shame when a library becomes a hostile place. It's usually considered in general to be a safe and quiet place - at least in the past. What I have been hearing about libraries lately is not encouraging :(
Sorry about the hassle for you and Coco. It's hard to convince people that there are indeed some dogs and children that are well behaved... maybe because so many aren't.
I so often remember our trip to your fabulous market and wish you and it were not so far away (as I eat my so-so cheese, veggies, and fruit). Once the prime of summer is over, Maine is not the best place on earth to buy fresh food. I then read books that vividly describe poverty/starvation and realize I need to be happy I have good enough food and can afford it.

Here are a couple shots of our caleche ride. The horse was "Lilly" and I forget the driver's name, but I think she was the only female driver.

Our last "good-bye" (*sniff*) in the metro before we went our separate ways... Selfies aren't always the best quality and don't capture the best expressions. We'll try for a better quality in our next "Bonjour!"

Sept. 15, 2014, 1:21pm

>37 tututhefirst: Hi Tina,
I know, huh? I finally gave in on the window (only open a crack instead of wide open) and the ceiling fan (off). I also placed a fleece blanket at the foot of the bed for Ron to pile on his side. sigh.
Oh well, glad I gave you a smile or two. You're right, of course. They are still worth keeping ;-)
Thanks for the prayers.

>39 tymfos: Hi Terri,
Here's what my sister had to say when I updated her on Mom's condition...
"you will be the one who feels the most gratified or full filled for having had this time to spend with mom"
I pondered that one for awhile but I can't agree. I would rather remember the times past we spent together when she was the woman I most admired and felt a strong connection to her. She's just not that person to me anymore and I find it heart-breaking.
My sister has pretty much written Mom off and only sees her about 2-3 times a year for a couple hours. She doesn't get it. In a way, I'm glad Sarah is not agonizing as I am. It doesn't do any good for Mom and only makes me miserable. I'll learn to live with it, but I won't like it at all.

>40 LovingLit: Hi Megan!
I get a bit confused comparing the timing of our seasons. It's really because I don't stop to count the months, etc. Still, Dec-Mar is a great time to be off from school and not so far away. Good luck with your wrap up school work. I know you will do great :-)
Thanks for the kind words and hugs!

>41 Smiler69:
Thanks, Ilana. I'm ok ;-)

Sept. 15, 2014, 8:29pm

Great to hear from you Claudia, and thanks for sharing those photos! I've come across quite a few female calèche drivers in Old Montreal, so maybe she just happened to be the only woman in that day. She was certainly colourful! Good for you for remembering the horse's name! Great to see a couple of pics of Sam—I was sorry I didn't make greater efforts to get her into our meetup shots.

I had the best kirby cucumbers and red tomato from the market today and thought of you and how much you would have enjoyed them. Such basic ingredients, yet there's no other time of year when they can be this good.

Wishing you well my dear. Can't be easy for you watching your mother on the decline. I visited my friend Liselotte, 95, on Friday, and she's on the decline too. She's still got all her head and memories and all that, but is physically becoming less and less able to do things, is now forced to use the walker even around the house, when she used to refuse outright to touch the thing but for the occasional outing, and having to accept help all the time, which is really hard for her, as she's always been a feisty old firecracker and it's a bit sad seeing her forced to be humbled that way. I can only imagine what you're going through with your mom. xoxo

Sept. 16, 2014, 8:54am

I'm so sorry about your mother - it's one of the hardest things I've ever done. All my most heartfelt sympathies to you, my friend.

Is the new carpet wonderful? Are you all back in order now? Time to settle in for some reading!

Two days ago I broke down and lit up the wood stove. Yesterday was sunny so it was fine, though brisk.... I wonder about today. The cats sure love the fire!

Sept. 17, 2014, 5:56pm

#50 The Ice Cream Queen of Orchard Street by Susan Jane Gilman (3.8 stars) LTER

From the extreme poverty of an immigrant family in NYC to the founder and owner of a hugely successful ice cream company, a young girl struggles for survival and love in this rags to riches story. Suffering a permanent injury and physical handicap, as well as emotional devastation, this determined young Jewish-Russian builds an empire with questionable ethics. As a woman who has earned her success, she wildly enjoys the fame and wealth and suffers the consequences. However, you can't help but admire the inner strength and the will to succeed despite the hardships and failures along the way.

What I liked best about this book is the intimate and familiar tone in the writing. It's an easy read and the author develops a true empathy for the main character. The reader will recognize the inner turmoil and cravings of the human condition. The story is as good as the ice cream.

Sept. 17, 2014, 5:58pm

Hi Ceeee!


Sept. 17, 2014, 6:09pm

>44 Smiler69:
Ilana, There's the unresolved debate over which is worse - losing the functions of your body or mind??? Neither are what we think much about when we are young. If we live long enough though, we are usually faced with one or the other. *sigh* It's a strange feeling to face your mortality. The book I am reading now for my moral theory class Refuge by Terry Tempest Williams has a lot to say about life, suffering, and death. And her writing is so poetic. Timely meditations for me, I guess. I'm loving the book.

>45 sibylline:
Lucy, It always amazes me how many people have to go through this ordeal of dementia with family members. And the stricken are not always old. I'm sad because they are so far away from any kind of effective treatment. It is for sure - very hard.
The new carpet is not too different than the old - BUT it is clean! Really clean :-) We finally gave up on the old one. No matter how much we cleaned it, it was just too far gone and looked very tired.
We usually see how long we can hold off before we turn our heat on. Never much of a problem for me. This year however, we had to heat up the house for the new carpeting installation. They say it's to help the carpet stretch properly - but I wonder if they were just too chilly here when they walked in. Ha!

Sept. 17, 2014, 6:13pm

>47 mckait:
Hi Kaaaaath!
Had to do a review for my free book. It was long (500 pages always seems long to me), but the story was a good one.

Beauteous day here. Please send more ;-)

Sept. 17, 2014, 6:43pm

I will see what I can do about the weather. I am about to try to start a thickish book myself.
dunno how that will go.

Sept. 17, 2014, 7:32pm

Ah! A thick book might take you 2 days! Don't despair.

Sept. 21, 2014, 8:36am

So, I still haven't begun the book, too busy and now I have Vine books to deal with. So.. we'll see how that goes. Just popping in so you know that I'm thinking of you...

Sept. 21, 2014, 12:37pm

#51 Refuge by Terry Tempest Williams (5 stars)

I've been very stingy of 5 star ratings lately. But, this one is a winner!

Here is an emotionally charged book that is chock full of moral issues, as well as intimate sharing of life, death, suffering, and beauty. Full of women's wisdom and the cycles of nature. This is one of those books that if you can make it through the initial reading you will want to re-read it to pick up the subtle details and think about it more fully.

I'm reading this book for my course in moral theory. Not a textbook at all, it is a personal journey through an especially difficult time of the author's life - both inner struggles and environmental issues to which she feels strongly connected. Our assignments are broken down into three sections of reading, but I could not put it down till I was finished.

So many quotable quotes. As I approach the inevitable deaths of my mother, my loved ones, and even myself, this one strikes me as something to think about -
"Suffering shows what we are attached to ... Dying doesn't cause suffering. Resistance to dying does."

The crisis of the Great Salt Lake, how nature adapts, and ways humans interfere reflect the personal crisis Terry Tempest Williams faces in her family and how the natural landscape of desert and marsh become her refuge in vulnerability and strength.

I will be looking for more books by T T Williams.

Sept. 21, 2014, 7:07pm

Hi Cee, I'm currently reading Refuge as kind if an in-between book. Beth (BLBera) had recommended it after I read Full Body Burden a couple of months ago. I love it, too. It lends itself well to a slow, thoughtful reading.

Sept. 21, 2014, 7:56pm

Hi Claudia! Slowly catching up with the threads, after my lengthy vacay. Hope all is well, my friend. Good review of Refuge. I have not heard of this author or title. LT is sure an enlightening place. Hugs!

Sept. 22, 2014, 8:10pm

Hi Joanne!
Can't wait to hear what my professor and other students think about Refuge - the moral issues and the thoughts that percolate up spontaneously in a group of seniors. Are you recommending Full Body Burden?

Hi Mark -
I'm thinking this was your first day back at work after the vacay... ooof! Hope you still have some of the "glow". It seems to disappear too quickly once you get back to work.

Bearbeitet: Sept. 22, 2014, 8:46pm

Currently reading The View from Castle Rock by Alice Munro.
Didn't grab me right away, but kept going and things are making more sense. I thought this was going to be a book of short stories - unrelated. It seems this is all connected which makes me happy. I'm still waiting to see why reviewers think her writing is so awesome ???

Sept. 23, 2014, 8:29am

*Waves* still thinking of you!

Sept. 23, 2014, 10:38am

I keep meaning to read some Alice Munro. I've been slowly accumulating one story collection after another over the years and have had the one you're reading right now for a good long while. I read Runaway quite a few years ago and thought that was pretty great. Of course been wanting to read her even more since the Nobel Prize, but you know how that goes... so many books, only so much time and all that. If you end up loving The View from Castle Rock, good. If you end up not loving it, good. You know what I mean? xx

Sept. 24, 2014, 10:55am

Cee, it sounds like Refuge is my kind of book. Like Mark, I haven't heard of it before. Another reason to love LT!

So sorry about your mother's decline. If it is any solace at all, I went through it all with my mother. She got to the point where she couldn't talk at all. So sad to see the decline of a gregarious and lively soul. My memories of happier times have begun to replace the years of seeing her fade away. She appears to me in dreams as her happy self which is a great comfort. Hugs to you and your dear mother.

Sept. 24, 2014, 8:10pm

Just saying hi, as I take a micro break from my report writing.
I tell ya, this one is coming out of me in dribs and drabs, painfully slow dribs and drabs. I guess I will get there though!

Sept. 25, 2014, 11:37am

>58 mckait: Waving back, Kath! Hope you're having a good day...

>59 Smiler69: Sheesh! I hate when I want to love a book and it's just not grabbing me. I'm about halfway thru The View from Castle Rock and it's still not moving me. The book is broken up in two major parts and I'm about to start the second part. It might turn out to be better (optimistic) or I might have picked the wrong Munro book to start with (more likely). It's not horrible. So many have extolled the woman's talent I feel like I should like it way more. Whatever. Yeah. I know what you mean about loving/not loving. It's all good.

>60 Donna828: See, that's one thing I wonder about, Donna. Will I ever be able to remember my Mom as the exuberant and sharp woman she used to be? She was so talented in so many ways and we could talk about anything. You've given me some hope that I will eventually be able to remember the good years, and accept/let go of the "bad" ones. Thanks for that.

>61 LovingLit: Hi Megan! Sending you strong report writing energy and inspiration! I remember those days... like one Mother's Day I had to hole up in my bedroom till I finished my writing for some class or other. Funny. I don't remember the report - just missing my kids most of that day. We all survived. When you are a mother, every day is Mother's Day! right? lol

Sept. 26, 2014, 7:46am

>61 LovingLit: you can do it!!! *cheers*

Hi Cee. Really, I got nuthin'. Work, home, and the same old "stuff" as usual.

I will be off to do errand soon, but have to cook for Duncan first... it's going to be a warm day, and I don't wanna cook later.

I worked til 7p yesterday. meh. Got a lot done. It's almost like digging a big old hole one day, filling it in the next....no feelings of accomplishment, more like going backwards. oh well. Whatever.

It's going to be around 80ish here. boo!

Hug your furkids for me, and then hug you

Sept. 26, 2014, 8:00am

I always wished there was a dog park around here. After reading this, I'm not so sure...

“A dog park is like a cocktail party, where you don’t know
anyone and everyone is drunk. You could have fun, but it could be a disaster.”

>63 mckait: Accck! Keep the 80s there or send them south, please. I think we're expecting 70s here on Sunday? Maybe that will be a window washing or painting day, though I don't feel like doing either. I'm pretty sure I can talk myself out of either quite easily.
Off to class this morning - then to see Mom, I guess. I know I'm terrible, but I don't enjoy visiting her anymore. It's depressing. It takes so much to pull myself together for her. This is not making me a better person. sorry to whine again...
Thanks for the hugs :-)

Sept. 26, 2014, 9:08am

I like the description of a dog park. Seems very apt. We have several around here, and I brought Coco around to a few when I first got him, but then stopped doing so. There are always lots of big dogs, and just a few little dogs. The big dogs inevitably get really rowdy and play rough with each other. At first, Coco wanted to be part of the action and he'd inevitably get trod on or pushed aside, not that they wanted to do him harm, but he's so tiny by comparison... and having a bad back to begin with, he'd come home and the next day he'd be in excruciating pain, so when I finally caught on, I put at end to those visits. There are a few dog parks dedicated to small dogs, but I hate that they're covered in dirt, without a single blade of grass. It sort of feels like hanging out in a prison yard. So I'm not a fan. I break the law properly instead and just take him places away from traffic and let him run around off leash. If he meets little dogs and gets to run around with them, all the better. xx

Sept. 29, 2014, 5:44am

>64 -Cee-: I miss the relative company of dogs here in Malaysia to be honest, Cee. The canine is not such a treasured animal in these parts and Malays generally will not allow a dog into their home or keep one as a family pet. As I grew up in a family that always had a dog I do miss the rapport that can be gained by their association especially in comparison with cats.

Have a lovely week my dear.

Sept. 29, 2014, 7:27am

Hi Claudia! Just checking in with my pal. Hope you had a nice weekend. The Wharton thread is up. It looks like we will both be reading The Custom Of The Country. Smiles...

Sept. 29, 2014, 6:21pm

No Dogs? Malaysia must be a terrible place :(

Hi Cee! I have absolutely nothing to say but that. You know how it is.... but wanted to at least stop by.

Sept. 29, 2014, 9:02pm

>68 mckait: Hahaha It does have its compensations Kath, but I do miss not keeping a dog. To be fair, living in an apartment as we do, it would not quite be appropriate anyhow.

Sept. 29, 2014, 10:40pm

Spent the day reading :-) Even finished a book! Nice.

Anyway -

>65 Smiler69: From Oct 1st to April 1st, dogs are allowed on our beach. They are supposed to be on a leash, but many are not. So we struggle with big dog/small dog events and owners who think the beach is a dog park with no rules. Luckily, there are so few people here in the winter we usually have the beach to ourselves once it gets cold.

>66 PaulCranswick: Hi Paul!
My grandmother grew up on a small farm and taught my Mom that animals were supposed to be outdoors and working. So I had to wait till I was on my own to have any pets. I used to be strictly a dog person... but a kitty stole my heart. Now I have both and luckily they get along quite well. Can't say I favor either now. They are good companions indeed.

>67 msf59: Mark!
I'm almost finished with Twain's Innocents Abroad which I picked up this month. Trying to catch up but it's taken me all month to read that one. Mark Twain is a favorite author of mine, but I am struggling with this one. Perhaps since this was his first book, his sense of humor wasn't refined enough for me. There are really good parts - but some awful ones too.
I've finally decided I need to skip Aug & Sep on my AAC in order to pick up on Oct and keep going. So, yes. I'll be reading Wharton's The Custom of the Country soon. I've read this is possibly her best book.

>68 mckait: Hey Kath,
Thanks for stopping by ;-)
Malaysia? WAY too hot! At least dogs do not have to suffer that heat :p~

Sept. 30, 2014, 3:09am

>64 -Cee-: I always wished there was a dog park around here. After reading this, I'm not so sure. We don't really have the concept of 'dog parks' here (or at least I've never come across one). So we have dog beach bans in the summer but otherwise they are allowed to run around on the beach. I'm afraid Daisy is one of the bouncy ones but I always stop her being rough with little dogs (depending on the dog - little terriers frequently like to play quite roughly in my experience). It's always a relief when I find a nice big bouncy Labrador for her to play with: they'll wear each other out without any danger of it getting too rough.

Sept. 30, 2014, 7:45am

Yep. Cats and Dogs are good companions, and i am convinced that birds can be, too. What would we do without them? I cant imagine.

Sept. 30, 2014, 8:13pm

>71 SandDune: Hi Rhian!
I know large dogs need room - lots of room - to exercise and the beach is a great place for running. But the rules do say dogs must be leashed on our beach. Frankly, there are some VERY large dogs (Great Danes) that run like the wind and are slightly scary to me. Bottom line, it just isn't fair that some dogs are on leash and some not. It's a disadvantage for the leashed dogs, I think. And many of the unleashed dogs have no manners or discipline - on our beach. That goes for the kids too, actually... in the summertime.
My daughter has 2 labs that are very playful. Hard to wear them out! They sure are lovable.

>72 mckait: Hi Kath,
"What would we do without them?"
Well, the first thing I would do is go on a very long vacation and not worry about them! LOL Then, I don't know.

Started reading Just One Damned Thing After Another and loving it!

Sept. 30, 2014, 8:17pm

Way to go, Claudia! You've hopped on the St. Mary's Express.

Bearbeitet: Sept. 30, 2014, 8:30pm

I hate those dog owners who let their dogs run amuck too. I'm among those. I got hell from one of my neighbours once who has something like five or six miniature schnauzers, when she saw Coco gallivanting around leash-less on a quiet path because he was "making her dogs jealous". Ah well. Live and let live in this case, I say. I don't know how she manages with all that yappy gang all pulling away at their leashes. I can't help but think "crazy dog lady" when I see her, because of all those dogs, even though I should know better, being the animal lover I am...

Glad you found a book to enjoy!

eta: for all I know, maybe she only has three or four dogs, but it always seems like a really huge gang of dogs to me for some reason. And she NOT a professional dog walker, I'm quite sure of this!

Sept. 30, 2014, 8:38pm

Yah, for St. Mary's! I am 3 books in and I even got my wife hooked.

Sept. 30, 2014, 9:57pm

Hi Cee! Delurking for a bit here. My Mom has just started down the dementia path. She can't seem to remember where things are or sometimes what they are for (like how to work the microwave). So far she remembers people, but not how old they are (the grandkids). It makes me sad. So you have my sincere empathy.

On to happier things--yay for the new clean carpet!! I am sure it is making your house seem a brighter place. And congrats on becoming another St. Mary's convert. I love the series. ; )

Okt. 1, 2014, 9:08pm

>74 ronincats: Hi Roni! Kath was the final tug to get me on the St Mary's Express! Looks like I made a good choice ;-) I just got to the part where she is taking her final test (solo) and has no idea what's going on....

>75 Smiler69: I got hell from one of my neighbours because (Coco) was "making her dogs jealous" LOL!
I only worry that a dog on a leash does not have the freedom/ability to defend itself against a large dog off leash whose owner is too far away to control their dog.
Ah well. Such is life!

>76 msf59: Hi Mark,
Oh boy - looks like I'm caught. I've had the book for awhile but never knew what it was about. Now I'm in trouble - ha!

>77 Berly: Hi Kimberly,
This is not good news :(
I am so sorry you and your Mom are facing this terrible disease. Everyone who has it seems to be affected somewhat differently in the beginning and while some progress quickly, others don't. I'm not sure which is better. Well, neither is good. I will keep you and your Mom in my thoughts and prayers. It makes me sad too.

So - yup! Great carpet... it hides everything! I had a plain brown elastic band break on me the other night and it went flying to the carpet - which includes many shades of brown. On my hands and knees, I couldn't find it! I vacuumed the whole damned rug cuz I was afraid the cat would find the elastic and try to eat it. I never found it but hoped it went in the vacuum cleaner. The next morning I saw it right in the middle of the room. I'm guessing the cat (or dog) did find it, played with it, and abandoned it. It's a mystery to me.

Okt. 1, 2014, 9:49pm

Busy days today and tomorrow - getting the TIDE out!

I think I'm gonna try reading ONE book at a time for awhile and see what that is like. Hmmm...

Okt. 2, 2014, 2:50pm

Because we're on the edge of town, and there are quite a few fields around, the norm here is very much that dogs go off the lead on them. The ones I tend to worry about with Daisy are the Jack Russell terriers, who usually have a definite 'attitude' (as do chihuahuas surprisingly), the very big dogs that we meet all seem fine. She doesn't seem to pick up on aggressive signals very well, when we were at agility last week a dog growled at her several times, but she continued doing 'play bows' to it, desperately wanting to play.

Okt. 2, 2014, 10:32pm

Hey Cee! So sorry to hear you're having a rough time with your mom. I'd love to offer words of encouragement, but what you really need right now are some hugs so... ((((Cee)))). If you want to PM me, I am always here. I hope you know that.

As far as your heat / cold issues with hubby, have you tried a chillow or some other form of gel pillow? I have two. The ones I'm using now are called Gel'O Cool Mats. I take my Thirty One thermal to bed with me (shameless plug, I know. Sue me. LOL). I use one and keep the other one in the thermal with two hard ice packs on it keeping it ready for when the first gel pillow gets too warm. Usually after about 3-4 hours, I wake up to go to the bathroom and I will need to exchange the first gel pillow for the cold one. It has helped me be able to sleep through the night. I still use a box fan on medium, but with that and the gel pillows, I am so much more comfortable and then the AC is on a "reasonable" temp. Just an idea.

Okt. 3, 2014, 7:57pm

>80 SandDune: Rhian,
There are definitely dog breeds with attitude, regardless of size. It certainly seems to me that large dogs are more mellow in general - once they mature. Their size can make them scary though and they are unaware of their strength sometimes. Little dogs can be scary too if they get crazy (and that happens). Bottom line, it is the responsibility of the owners to train and control. Some do; some don't.
Daisy sounds like a sweetheart, pretty funny, and good natured. Congrats to you as a good dog owner ;-) I believe training is key.

>81 TinaV95: Hi Tina,
Thanks for the hugs;-) I am making an effort to go with the flow and embrace change... even if it encompasses loss. It's gonna happen anyway. I can't fight it with any kind of success. The blessing here is that Mom is still in good humor - not depressed or aggressive.

Gel pillow - good idea. If I lived in the south, I'd be doing the gel pillow for sure! And the fan ... and the a/c ... etc

Okt. 5, 2014, 7:32am

Dogs, give me a big one every time! The smaller breeds are just not my cuppa tea, but to each his own and to each furkid a home.

Thanks for keeping up on Duncan's story :) He sends his best to auntie Cee.

I am glad that you finally dipped into the St Mary's Chronicles. I am very glad that rd warbled them my way. I am caught up, and looking forward to the next one :) Much like the Iron Druid Chronicles, they are fun and interesting reads.

Was the Halloween read A Winter Haunting ? That one was good. Terri is a great go to for shivery reads. I need to take a look at her list myself. There is an author that she introduced me to whose name I constantly forget. It's frustrating, because i like him and recognize him when I see it, but his name eludes me.

Hang in there with all of the hard stuff. I honestly cannot imagine what it is like to deal with. A mom who doesn't know who you are has to be heartbreaking. Sending hugs your way.

Okt. 5, 2014, 12:42pm

Let me see - re dog parks - I used to love them, BUT I was run over from behind by two dogs off leash running and playing (which I was ok with at the time, as mine was off too) knocked over and broke my ankle. There truly is a reason why big dogs must be leashed in open public places. The worst was that about 3/4 of the people disappeared immediately (worried I would sue and one was clearly terrified I would sue him.... which would have been nuts since my dog was also off lead).

I have been a HUGE TT Williams fan for ages. She is wonderful and all of her books are worth reading. I've seen her read and speak too, sublime!

Okt. 5, 2014, 1:27pm

There is a reason that any dog should be on leash in public, outside of a fenced in area. The dozen or more of dogs I saw either harmed or killed, when I worked for a vet. The owners said.. always said, "but they never left the yard" or "he never left my side ". But never is only good until......

Cats hit by trains, dog by buses, cars..dogs jumping out of moving vehicles " but she loved hanging her head out the window".BAH!

People do stupid things all the time, we can't expect our furkids to be any different. It's up to us to protect them from harm. If that means a leash in public, so be it. It's a bad old world out there. "If only" two words, not magical in any way.Lots of temptation for a dog walking unrestrained. No matter how well trained. No dogs are better trained than police dogs, but I have seen them refuse commands a time or two if circumstances are too tempting.

My daughter used to take her 2 large dogs to a dog park, but since pet parents aren't any better than child parents, she quit. Some are irresponsible and lazy, and do not make sure their babies are taught right from wrong. Sometimes, it's just accidental and a result of exuberant dogs, bad results don't just come from bad behavior. Good intentions matter, but they aren't magical either. She doesn't take them anymore, she fenced in her back yard instead.


Okt. 5, 2014, 8:28pm

I love big dogs when they are old. Big dog puppies and adolescents (that are still quite large) are too heavy for me. And when they get really old, how do you carry them up and down stairs when they are lame and blind? And they eat so much - and usually drool or slobber. Ick. I like really small dogs :-)
There's a size for everyone.
I don't think your suggestion was A Winter Haunting but I'll check that out. I really thought I made an obvious note of it when you mentioned it. Apparently not. I think I remember from somewhere else that Shutter Island by Dennis Lehane is a good one for Halloween. ???
btw, I agree with your rant. I'm just not willing to tempt fate unnecessarily. So, I guess I feel better now that we have no dog park around here. I'm sure Loki would not have fun. He gets too nervous when the "herd" is scattered and acting unpredictable, so to speak.

>84 sibylline: Hi Lucy!
Wow! I can totally visualize being run over as a great dane came up behind me once running like the wind. Lucikly he veered off before he flattened me. Shook ME up a bit!
That's pretty weird the way everyone disappeared on you. Sheesh!

I am currently reading another TTW book When Women Were Birds. It's a great follow-up to Refuge. I think I've found another favorite author. Our professor has met her, read all her books, and thinks very highly of her. She has a new book coming out in November The Story of My Heart.

Okt. 10, 2014, 8:20pm

Hi Cee! What's new? Wishing you a great weekend. : )

Okt. 13, 2014, 3:50pm

Hi Sis, I seem to be spending my time on LT catching up on threads. Then there is not enough time to read every post of course. I really hope the carpeting went well and all your books are back in place again. And I hope you are doing fine.

Giving you a big hug!

Okt. 13, 2014, 5:33pm

>81 TinaV95: >82 -Cee-:
I thought you must be talking about heating your feet in bed! (or is a gel pillow for your head?). See how out of the loop I am- lol
We rarely get hot nights here. Ever. Nothing that open windows won't fix anyway. I take a hot water bottle to bed in winter, even though my lovely other is a giant heat-machine, he doesn't really like my cold feet on his legs at my whim.

>84 sibylline: wow, that says a lot that 3/4 of the people disappeared when you broke your ankle. What a sad state of affairs, even if I do get why.

Okt. 14, 2014, 9:24pm

Have to write you to say that I am at the Alexander Hamilton right this minute! Staying here a couple of days while visiting with the LD. (Who is spending one night here with me.) The plan is to go into NYC tomorrow to the Met, who knows if we will actually make it. We are prodigious at just hanging about.

Okt. 18, 2014, 2:38pm

Just got back from a nice long "vacation" (hmmm... dunno about that) in CT. Went to visit both daughters and families :-)
I'm so exhausted I went to bed early last night when I got home and didn't even pick up my bedtime reading. Might do it again tonight.

And the leaves this year are sooo gorgeous. Nice bright colors at their peak inland. We're a bit past that in Maine, but still pretty.

Didn't get much reading done this past week, but I am slowly working on a couple books. One by Edith Wharton for the AAC The Custom of the Country which is interesting, albeit the main character is a witch and a half. Decent writing and storyline.
The other book is Small Wonder by Kingsolver which I am running behind on and will need to catch up this week for my class.

>87 Berly: Hi Kim!
New? Leaves are fluttering off the trees like so many brilliant butterflies, hugs and love in my heart are back on "full" from the grands, lots of great HIGH tides now that summer is over, and the hunters are back :P I say every year I need to go away for the month of November to avoid the killing, but it hasn't happened yet. October is for bow and arrow hunting - November for guns. I really object to listening to gunshots early morning and throughout the day. *sigh*
Thanks. Not only did I have a nice weekend - I had a whole nice week!

>88 connie53: Hi Sis!
Everything is back to normal - incl books. Thanks for the hug :-)
Cute gif ;-)
Hope you are enjoying cooler weather and back to school???

>89 LovingLit: Hi Megan -
As hot/warm as I always seem to be, I do get cold feet in the winter. Maybe cuz I don't wear much on my feet on the cold floors. They warm up eventually once I'm under the covers - but hubby's legs are quicker :-)
Got your Christmas shopping done? hehehe

>90 sibylline: Hi Lucy,
Hope you and your daughter had a great time hanging out. That's a lovely place to do so. Did you get to the Met? Hope you enjoyed each other whatever you wound up doing. I think that is a great little RR station there, with good parking too.

Okt. 18, 2014, 5:31pm

Agreed with you about Undine. It almost made the book unbearable, but then Wharton is just so good. Glad you had a nice time you CT. Rest up well after you 'vacation'. ;-)

Okt. 18, 2014, 7:26pm

Hi Ilana!
I'm hoping for a happy ending with poetic justice. I think I'm at about 82%. Things look bleak. And what a stupid name - Undine!

I must catch up with your thread to see if there are any more chapters in your winter coat saga. lol Thought of you when our three generations of females went coat shopping in CT ;-) And it was so warm last week, but we were successful. Looking forward to cold next week.

Bearbeitet: Okt. 25, 2014, 7:29am

Happy Saturday, Claudia! Hope everything is going well. I'll be wrapping up The Custom of the Country this weekend. I agree, Undine is a nasty piece of work but Wharton is a helluva writer.

You'll have to stop by the AAC Main thread. We've been tossing around ideas for next year. It seems most folks want it back. Grins...


Okt. 25, 2014, 8:44am

We did have a great time Cee!

Okt. 29, 2014, 1:12am

Hi Cee!

Nov. 2, 2014, 11:45pm

Hi Cee,
Just checking in :) Reporting a warm spell here, with sun and heat. Not to your liking maybe, but I am liking the kids being outside!

Nov. 3, 2014, 8:10am

Hi Ceeeeeeeee! Happy ah...new...thread?! I couldn't find your thread for awhile but I think I'm back on track. I hope you rec'd tons of snow yesterday and are warm and cozy :0)

Nov. 8, 2014, 11:41am

Hi Sis! How are things over there! I hope you are al right and doing fine.

Nov. 8, 2014, 12:58pm

I've not been on LT as often as usual and I miss what is happening. I am so sorry to hear of your mother's mental decline. How very, very sad!

Thanks for posting your lovely photos of the Canadian trip. Isn't is ever so special to meet up with our LT friends?

While you may have snow, we still are enjoying fall. So, from my house to yours, Happy Fall:

Nov. 8, 2014, 1:08pm

Just sending you a big smooch. No time for more, have to run. Ok, maybe a big {{{{{HUG}}}}}!!!

Nov. 11, 2014, 12:18am

Hello? Knock, knock? So much for visiting. Catch you next time I have LT time!! (See, RL gets in the way for everyone sooner or later....) Hugs.

Nov. 11, 2014, 11:48am

>94 msf59: >95 sibylline: >96 Berly: >97 LovingLit: >98 Carmenere: >99 connie53: >100 Whisper1: >101 Smiler69: >102 Berly:

Mark, Lucy, Kim, Megan, Lynda, Connie, Linda & Lilly- great picture, Thanks!, and Ilana

Please forgive me for this group acknowledgement. I am pretty far behind for everyone - including myself. I have been lurking from time to time - though not enough to really know where everyone is these days. Sorry.
Thanks for keeping my thread alive! Wasn't easy, was it?

Will be interested in NEXT year's AAC. I am liking the one this year. I'm presently waiting for The Witches of Eastwick for this month's challenge. Apparently there is not a library in Maine that has this book so I finally had to break down and buy it used.

I'm struggling along with a few issues, but nothing that time won't correct/heal. The rest of this month looks very busy. Kids coming for Thanksgiving and I have to make 100 fancy bows for the town school (kids will be joining with the fire dept to make their annual wreaths Dec 1). So, as soon as I get the ribbon, I'll be busier than a one-armed paperhanger! Hope it comes SOON! Also have to do volunteer work at the historical society for sending out the newsletter, membership renewals, and an author's book signing. Oh, dear. It looks even worse when I write it all down.

Things are looking iffy for hitting my goal of 75 books this year. I'll either just miss it or just make it. It's not the end of the world... but when I'm this close I want to make it.

Many thanks to all the veterans out there! You are all very special :-)

Nov. 11, 2014, 11:56am

Gosh, you really are a busy woman, aren't you? I don't know how you manage it all. Makes me want to crawl back into bed just seeing all the things you've got lined up.

You really are awfully close to the mark in terms of book numbers, aren't you? But then it's not about numbers of course, so hardly matters one way or the other, but I know what you mean about wanting to make it when you're so close. Maybe you should get more kids to help you with some of those non-essential (i.e. non-reading) tasks and devote yourself to what really counts (!).

You are missed my dear Claudia. Wanna walk over to Atwater Market and hang out? ;-)

Nov. 11, 2014, 12:19pm

Stopping in for a quick wave and got hit (warbled?) by Refuge. Sounds wonderful and precisely what I would enjoy reading.

Nov. 11, 2014, 2:38pm

Glad to hear something, Sis! You are so busy! Please take care of your self!.

Nov. 12, 2014, 7:17pm

>104 Smiler69: Maybe you should get more kids to help you with some of those non-essential (i.e. non-reading) tasks and devote yourself to what really counts (!).
I like your thinking, Ilana!
I'd love to meet you at Atwater Market! I assume it is all snugged up now - no more open air. I think of that place often. We had a good time and a good lunch.

>105 streamsong: Hi Janet!
I really have been bad about writing reviews all year. The fact that this book Refuge has a review is testament to how much I loved it. I hope you get to read it and enjoy it too.
Waving back...

>106 connie53: Hi Sis -
I'm doing my best at taking care of me. Sometimes I feel like it's one step forward two steps back. Even so, I manage to do all right ;-)
Thanks for stopping by... hugs across the horizon...

Have started an ER book He Wanted the Moon. Oh my! The beginning has slammed me - it's an account of how mentally ill patients were treated in the early 20th century. Just awful. Very hard to read :-(

Also started China Dolls. Hope it picks up. It's not horrible, but not exciting - yet... (pg 73) I do like a couple of the other books written by Lisa See, so I'm giving it a chance.

Hmm. The two books are about the same time period - coincidentally. But they are on two different coasts (BOS and SF) and very different environments and subject matter. Sometimes I really wonder how I choose my reading.

Also finally got The Witches of Eastwick in the mail. Yay! I don't know about that one either but I'm reading it for this month's AAC - John Updike.

Nov. 13, 2014, 2:05pm

Sending some big hugs back!

Nov. 13, 2014, 9:07pm

Thinking of you. Seems as though many of us (me included) have been busier this year with less time for reading and LT. Maybe winter will help me with that!

Nov. 14, 2014, 12:01pm

Over, just letting you know you're in my thoughts as you continue to do your best with your mother. Sending strength.

On the latest Lisa See: I found it sadly disappointing. Hope you like it better.

Nov. 14, 2014, 8:39pm

>108 connie53: Thanks, Connie :-)

>109 sibylline: I beginning to wonder if I should concentrate more on reading next year and less on personal issues. I, too, am hoping Winter will be a great reading season. It usually is. I'm having a hard time getting to the books I have lined up - and, well, I should be writing more about books and less about me ;-)

>110 bohemima: Hi Gail!
I just finished China Dolls. I am somewhat disappointed that it wasn't as good as a couple of the other books I read by Lisa See. Was expecting better, but I see now the reviews told it like it is. I did think the first of the three sections was the weakest and impossible to get excited about. Being a stubborn reader, I found it got a bit better as the story went on. Just not one of her best overall.
Thanks so much for sending it to me. Would you like it back now?
Hope you are well.

Bearbeitet: Nov. 14, 2014, 9:16pm

Hi Claudia! Thanks for checking in with us. The reason I have avoided China Dolls, was the lackluster LT response. I did like a couple of her earlier books.

Good luck with the Updike. Joe pearl-ruled it and someone else hurled it unfinished. I hope it isn't as bad for you. I have about 80 pages left in Rabbit, Run. I like it but it isn't pleasant reading.

Nov. 15, 2014, 8:02am

I must admit that I pearl-ruled The Witches of Eastwick myself. I just could not get into it. That and it smelled funny - I borrowed it from the library and HATE when they have a "smell".
Oh well, I am looking forward to December's AAC read.

Nov. 17, 2014, 12:22am

Hey Claudia, I've lost track of your thread but wanted to check in to see how things are going.

Thanksgiving is almost here: my favorite holiday! No presents, no commercialization (well, almost none).... just gratitude and good food. I love it.

Take care, Cee.

Nov. 17, 2014, 12:31pm

#68 He Wanted the Moon: The Madness and Medical Genius of Dr. Perry Baird, and His Daughter's Quest to Know Him by Mimi Baird LTER (4.5 stars)

A direct look at the effects and stigma of mental illness, this book is a labor of love as the daughter of a bipolar physician combines her father's memoirs and her own experiences and questions of what really happened to her family.

Dr Baird's writings make their way through the family to his daughter, Mimi, in disarray. Dr Baird left behind his personal and medical insight in explicit accounts of harsh and barbaric treatment that were practiced on him in psychiatric institutions. Unfortunately, he lived in the mid twentieth century - a time of misbeliefs and the lack of scientific knowledge of bipolar disorder.

A sad story of the breakup of family, pain, misunderstandings, and the loss of her father's genius unfolds in a clear and forthright style of writing. Mimi's quest was to know her father, make sense of his life and contemplate its effect on her. It takes many years, emotional conflict, and resolute research of public and private records.

Uncomfortable to read, this is yet another instance of treating the unknown and fearful aspects of life with force and insensitivity - which never really works and usually makes things worse.
An enlightening story.

Nov. 17, 2014, 12:32pm

I'll be back...

Nov. 17, 2014, 7:37pm

OK. I'm back ;-)

>112 msf59: Hi Mark!
I am past page 50 on The Witches of Eastwick and feel like continuing. Except for the atrocious sentence structure which I find hard to follow at times, I can't find major fault with it yet. However, I will say I don't see any kind of plot developing and wouldn't consider this great literature.
We'll see. I don't feel like I'm really into it yet.

>113 jayde1599: Hi Jess!
LOL :-) I don't like smelly books either... and... I'm not really sure there is going to be anything to actually "get into" at all. Hope I'm wrong. Nice to see you here.

>114 EBT1002: I lose track of my thread, too, Ellen ;-) Seriously!
Nothing beats Thanksgiving for good food. Well, maybe Christmas ties. You are right. There is no real commercialization of the actual holiday. Of course, Black Friday shopping seems to be swallowing it up on both ends now. I'll always take time out for thanks, turkey, stuffing, and a nice glass of wine though. Hope you have a wonderful holiday :-)

So now I'll be starting Wide Sargasso Sea by Jean Rhys. Finally. Really looking forward to it. Why is it I can pass over a book for months and then suddenly I can't wait to get started on it?

I've spent enough time playing with ribbon and making bows that my kitty and dog have finally lost interest. Good. Now maybe I can get something done.

Bearbeitet: Nov. 17, 2014, 7:49pm

>116 -Cee-:/117 :)
You came back!
Glad you are reading up a storm, even if you might not get to 75 (I certainly wont). The Witches of Eastwick I will leave, but I am trying to track down Rabbit, Run for a late run on the AAC. Never too late to start, right?

Good luck bow-tying!

Eta: I (especially) hope you enjoy Wide Sargasso Sea!

Nov. 17, 2014, 8:33pm

Hi Megan!
I know, huh? I have pulled out Wide Sargasso Sea so many times and something else always seemed to push it away. I haven't forgotten this was a gift from you :-) I am actually excited to get to it. I come across so many references to it in other books... the time has come and now is! Will be starting it tonight.

And no. It is never too late to start anything imo. Go for Rabbit, Run. I'm wondering if I should have chosen that one myself.

Nov. 18, 2014, 6:23pm

I give up! I quit reading The Witches of Eastwick! Got to page 61 and asked my stubborn self "Where is this going?"
Answer: Nowhere!
Crapola. :P~

I thought I liked reading books about witches... thought this would be more fun. Updike's sentence structure is so awkward on top of it all. Not worth the work. Whew. I'm free!

OTOH - I'm really liking Wide Sargasso Sea. Very interesting...

Nov. 18, 2014, 9:53pm

Just a drive-by smooch for now. Your are in my thoughts. Will be back. xx

Nov. 20, 2014, 7:20pm

Hi Ilana!
I'm wondering if you are getting any of this wonderful snow that is hitting everywhere but Maine :(
Will have to check your thread to see the ongoing saga of the winter coat...
Hope you are warm ;-)

Nov. 21, 2014, 10:36pm

Good idea on ditching the unsatisfying one. I do that too, but file it in my ocd head as "still reading". Even though I have not read a word of The English Patient for well over a year now, I am officially 'still reading' it. ;)

Bearbeitet: Nov. 23, 2014, 3:48pm

Hi Cee--Not much snow here, mostly ice, which is all melted now. And I have one of those "still reading" books that I just today took off my list. It has been about 6 months and I haven't touched it. Someday I will get back to it. Storyteller: The Authorized Biography of Roald Dahl

Nov. 23, 2014, 2:27pm

Cee, just letting you know that I'm here even though I don't post very much. Good call on the Updike. I checked out The Widows of Eastwick by mistake. Widows/witches…not necessarily the same thing! I didn't get far into it when I realized it wasn't agreeing with me. I hope Mark can find it in his heart to forgive us.

Nov. 23, 2014, 9:45pm

#69 Wide Sargasso Sea by Jean Rhys (4.5 stars)

This is a must read companion to Jane Eyre. Though it is a prequel, I think it is better read after. Also, most introductions should be skipped (imho) to avoid spoilers. This introduction was quite helpful to read beforehand - as an introduction - before getting into the actual story. The notes throughout were very, very helpful to me. They were short, abundant - but not excessive.

Haunting and beautifully written. The spiritual and physical worlds of the characters are explored in beauty and tragedy. This little book makes a big impact.

Certainly could be read as a stand alone, but much more meaningful as a companion book. Thanks again to Megan!

Nov. 23, 2014, 9:45pm

#70 The Smartest Kids in the World and How They Got That Way by Amanda Ripley (4 stars)

Read this one for my upcoming RL book group. This was not a boring book at all... quite interesting. I can see that it will spark plenty of conversation in my group that includes many teachers.

The US does not rank as an education superpower in the international rankings. Ripley (a reporter) decides to see what she can find out to begin to answer the questions this raises. While she does not claim to have all the answers, her book raises some unexpected factors impacting countries that should be doing better. She follows exchange students to Finland, South Korea, and Poland, as well as researching and comparing education systems in those countries. She does it all in the context of political history and socioeconomic conditions that vary among countries.

Much of what she presents is controversial - and these are ideas and policies we should be questioning. Ripley believes schools should be for learning (not sports and PTA meeting) and more should be expected of our teachers and students.

Nov. 23, 2014, 9:58pm

>123 LovingLit: I know what you mean, Megan, about thinking you are still reading a book even if the timeframe is extended. However, I can say with full conviction, I have definitely given up on The Witches of Eastwick. NOT still reading that one!
btw, I really loved Wide Sargasso Sea even more than I thought I would. So glad I recently read Jane Eyre and heard about WSS on LT. A great combination :-)

>124 Berly: Hi Kim!
Sorry about the ice. Snow is so much nicer. We might be getting a bit more in a few days... wouldn't you know, it'll be Weds when everyone is traveling.
When I give up on a book it really deserves a negative comment from me... but not any kind of review. So I just label those books "Quit, Yuck, Ptooey!" That way there is no question of its standing imho.

>125 Donna828: Hi Donna!
I don't post much anymore, so I don't expect others to. Lurking is fine. Glad you dropped a note here too.
I tried to get Witches of Eastwick in my library by the only one that was listed in our system was "The Widows" of same which I did not want. Not being able to find it anywhere made me want it more. Too bad, since I wound up buying it. What a mistake. Oh well. I didn't pay much for it... still... bad decision that time.
I think Mark will forgive us - no problem. There are sooo many books in the world and we agree on a lot of them. He's very open minded ;-)

Nov. 24, 2014, 12:10pm

I love Wide Sargasso Sea too. I got my own copy after reading it for the first time from a library copy, and I intend on reading it again every time I reread Jane Eyre from now on. Really glad you loved it too. Haunting is the right word. I just got myself a to-die-for Folio Society recent edition of Jane Eyre and of Wuthering Heights too, so I'll just have to reread both soon enough I guess.

Now you've got to know I heartily approve and applaud your decision to ditch a book you weren't enjoying! Life's too darn short. Besides which, it can feel too darn long when you're not having a good time. xox

Nov. 24, 2014, 3:26pm

>126 -Cee-: yay, you liked it. And I loke the publisher series and the cover. So everyone's happy!

Nov. 27, 2014, 8:31am

He Wanted the Moon sounds like a stunning read.

The Witches of Eastwick is one of the few Updikes I haven't read, not sure why that is.

And don't get me started on the USA and public education, really, I start foaming at the mouth. Seems like people get caught up in everything but the substance. Everything from 'theory' to sports. Argh!

Bearbeitet: Nov. 27, 2014, 9:14am

Happy Thanksgiving, Claudia! I have no problem with someone ditching a book, that isn't clicking. I have even got better at it. Updike doesn't seem to work for everyone, so I expected trouble. Smiles...

I think Larry Watson will be much more satisfying for everyone.

Have a great holiday, my friend.

Nov. 27, 2014, 9:06pm

Hope you're having a pleasant and peaceful Thanksgiving, Cee!

Nov. 27, 2014, 10:32pm

I have been absolutely hopeless at keeping up, dear Cee, just a-lately. But I am no less thankful than all my American friends, who are celebrating today, for the warmth love and joy that this group exudes. Long may I count you as a friend and I wish you a lovely holiday. xx

Nov. 30, 2014, 12:13am

You hit me with a book bullet for The Smartest Kids in the World, Cee!

Nov. 30, 2014, 8:48pm

>126 -Cee-: Hi Cee! I agree that Wide Sargasso Sea is best read after Jane Eyre. All the attention on both these books in the past month or so has me wanting to do a reread of Jane Eyre. I think I'm going to try it on audio....

Dez. 1, 2014, 8:14am

chiming in to say Jane Eyre remains on the top three all-time favorite books!

Cee, While I'm MIA, please know I'm thinking of you and sending all good wishes.

Dez. 2, 2014, 8:28pm

oops! Guess I'm a tad behind here...

>129 Smiler69: Hi Ilana!
I can only imagine how beautiful your Folio Society books are. It must make reading that much more pleasurable. Which one is your favorite of all you have? Maybe that's not a fair question, but I'm curious.
"I heartily approve and applaud your decision to ditch a book you weren't enjoying!" I know, huh? It's about time I learned that lesson!

>130 LovingLit: Oh yeah, Meagan. We're happy. I loved the cover too ;-)

>131 sibylline: So, Lucy, did you like the other Updikes you read? Should I try another?
Our discussion today at my RL reading group was quite lively re The Smartest Kids in the World. Why, oh why, can't we DO something about our education system? Argh is right!

>132 msf59: Hi Mark!
We had a wonderful holiday weekend. Hope you did too.
I'm going to try to get one of Watson's books from the library as I don't have any of my own. I'll make a stab at it.
I have really enjoyed the AAC this year - what I was able to do. Well, I did most of it. I'll be trying again next year. Thanks for your interest in this and sharing the challenge with us ;-)

Dez. 2, 2014, 8:50pm

>133 tymfos: Hi Terri,
Yes, indeed. It was a pleasant Thanksgiving, but I'm not sure you could call it peaceful - lol. It was wonderful to have the Grands around - as well as our own kids. We won't be seeing them for Christmas so we took full advantage of this visit.

>134 PaulCranswick: Hey, Paul! Great to have you drop by. I know you are super busy and I appreciate it ;-) I have given up keeping up, but I do lurk around as I think this is a special group of friends.
Thanks for counting me a friend - as I do you!

>135 ronincats: Hi Roni!
Didn't know I had any bullets left... thought I was out. heh.
We had quite a discussion about that book today. I think you'd find it interesting.

>136 EBT1002: Hi Ellen -
There was a lot of discussion re those two books about this time last year and that's what got me started. So. It took me a year. Oh well. I was a bit slow to just be getting to Sargasso Sea, but I was looking forward to it all year. I probably won't reread those two for a long while again as there are way too many other books calling me. They were both a treat for me though... glad I read them!

>137 Whisper1: Hi Linda -
We are all looking forward to your surgery and wishing the VERY BEST and PERFECT outcome for you. Take your time and get it right ;-) You are in my thoughts and prayers. Gentle hugs xoxo!

Dez. 2, 2014, 8:52pm

I have mixed feelings about Updike. I mostly read all his books because my mother said once that he 'caught' aspects of her generation no one else did. She had all his books. He is a very good writer as in putting those sentences together, but I don't think I ever read a story where a male character ever thinks of a woman in any other terms but whether or not he would like to have sex with her, to be blunt about it. Kind of a limited view. That includes finding an intelligent woman sexy - UGH! So I got sick of it eventually. I can't recommend any of his books really, although they are all 'interesting' as a portrait of a certain era. Rabbit is kind of his alter ego - who he might have been had he been a bit less smart and driven, if he'd stayed in Scranton or wherever instead of going of to Harvard to be an acclaimed writer.

Dez. 2, 2014, 9:08pm

Oh. I see. Well... thanks for enlightening me a bit, Lucy. I guess I won't pursue his other writings as there are just so many others I DO want to read.

Witches of Eastwick was too boring for too long... and the women were just a obsessed with making the rounds having casual sex with the men, too. I don't know about Updike's sentences or writing overall, but his characterizations and descriptions in this book were uninteresting and somewhat crude imo. I don't mind a bit of sex in a book - but I want it to be special. 'nuff said

Are you reading a book by Watson for December's AAC?

Dez. 4, 2014, 1:24pm

It's about time I learned that lesson!

Well, I don't know, because I don't like to judge how others like to approach things, and as someone who has always had difficulty with finishing things, I must say I've always had respect for completists, but as I've come into middle age, I've come to accept that in some cases, I really do make no apologies for leaving certain things unfinished and that especially goes for books that do nothing for me, and all the more so when they annoy me or make me feel depressed or peeve me off. There are just so many other ways I'd rather be spending my time, right? Like, with other books. Or drawing. Or with my pets. And lately, even, with other human beings—EEK! Whowouldathunkit!!! Anyway, you get my point. So ya, better to ditch it is my thinking. Although that being said, there are quite a few cases where I've decided to overrule the Pearl Rule because I had some instinct I might get over some hurdle if I just let something flow over me and did get a lot out of the experience by sticking to it longer. But in those cases, there was some part of my mind that was finding something or interest in there, instead of one part of my brain telling me I should jump off the nearest bridge or high place, ya know?


Dez. 8, 2014, 2:52pm

Hi Sis! I'm ashamed to see that I have been neglecting you and your thread. Sorry for that. I promise I do better, I will try to.

Love and hugs

Dez. 8, 2014, 9:43pm

>142 Smiler69: ......... ya know?
Yes. I do know. All of it. lol
You sure know just how to put words together - like hitting nails on the head. You're too funny. xoxo

>143 connie53: That's the thing about sisters... there's no need for shame or recrimination. I don't feel neglected and we don't need each other to be better. You're great just the way you are. I love any time you drop in ;-)

Dez. 8, 2014, 10:37pm

^ hehe (re: sisters/shame/recrimination)
I ran into my sister today at a mall- neither of us are likely mall-rats, and the first thing we did (after our hello hug) was give each other that look that says "how come you didn't tell me you were out and about!!?" :)
It was funny.

Dez. 12, 2014, 12:41pm

#72 The Living by Annie Dillard (5 stars) (397 pp)

This excellent book was dense and took me a long time to read. The depth, the pain, and the beauty of this story of pioneers settling on the Washington coast in the 1800s was impressive. Dillard "paints" a very strong sense of time and place. Her character development focuses on an array of individuals to portray an astonishing kaleidoscope of the success and failure of human adaptation to a harsh existence. Unlike many other good historical novels, however, she takes this experience to another level.

As outstanding as it is, this book is not for everyone. I can see where some readers would get impatient working their way through it. Also, there is much melancholy and death in this story. The soul searching of relationships is as dramatic as the hard physical work of clearing a wilderness. Dillard explores deep within hearts and minds. Characteristically, she uncovers and explores the age old, contemporary, and eternal quest for insight to a human's short existence - the failings, hopes, and place in the universe.

Highly recommended for anyone who lives in the NW coastal area, is planning a visit and wants a bit of historical background, or just loves Annie Dillard's profound interpretations of living.

Dez. 12, 2014, 1:21pm

>145 LovingLit:
Hi Megan!
Living pretty far from my sister, there is no real chance of our meeting in a mall. heh. There are no malls in my area and she has no money to spend... don't ask me why. She makes a ton of money but always complains of not having enough for the basics. Whatever. I don't go there. When she wants to come up to see us I have to give her gas money. She's an odd one.

So. Now I get to concentrate on my other current read - Constellation of Vital Phenomena which I had to put aside to concentrate on The Living. I was hoping to pick a few somewhat shorter and hopefully quick reads to get to 75. Didn't end up that way and December is slipping away rather quickly. I might not make it this year... but the books are really good.

I picked a Kindle offering (for cheap) about cats and Christmas Cat Coming Home - ya know, to get in the holiday spirit. Title sounds good, right?

So far (37%), there is not much Christmas and everyone is getting beaten up, stabbed, and murdered. Horrible. The cats will probably solve the crimes, but the cats themselves are highly improbable. They talk to a selected few humans and traipse all over town in and out of everyone's homes. I'm usually pretty good at suspending belief and going with the flow... but... sheesh. This might be the first cat book I am not fond of :-(
We'll see.

Dez. 12, 2014, 1:44pm

Hi Sis, here I am again! And you are so right about the sister thing. Besides you I have two sisters living near me and I don't see them or phone them at a regular basis. When we do meet it's always nice and pleasant.

On the other hand, I visit my brother every Wednesday! That has been the case for almost 25 years now. And I value that evening. I always go to see him by train and he takes me home at about 11.00 pm. He doesn't want me to travel at night. What we do? We watch some series or the 'X-factor' or 'So you think you can dance' (UK, US, Canada and Australia) and we talk (a lot).
It started 25 years ago when he tried to teach me computer stuff.

Dez. 12, 2014, 10:42pm

Just a hi.

And have you read The Cat and the Curmudgeion? Great and very funny (realistic, too) book about an animal advocate and writer and the cat who made his life great. I loved it.

Dez. 17, 2014, 1:32pm

A Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year, Sis!

Dez. 18, 2014, 1:37pm

Hi Connie!
It's nice to have a brother ;-) The are quite different creatures from sisters.
Wishing you a very merry holiday season too! I guess it's not that far away now - yikes.

Hi Gail,
I'm so glad you dropped by. I ordered Amory's Compleat Cat which has three of his books about his cat. As a matter of fact, I just got it in the mail today and hope to pick it up soon. I need some animal humor today. It's been so grey and rainy lately. Animal stories written by advocates always put me in a good mood. Thanks for the recommendation.

Bearbeitet: Dez. 18, 2014, 3:43pm

#75 Questions About Angels: Poems by Billy Collins (4 stars)

YAY! I made 75! I may even get a few more in before the end of the year.

One of my favorite poets :-) Once Poet Laureate of the United States.
I can relate to most of what he writes, imagines, and shares.

Dez. 18, 2014, 4:38pm

Congrats on 75! I am so glad you made it...

Dez. 18, 2014, 5:24pm

Nice choice for 75, Cee, and congrats! I like his poetry, too.

Dez. 18, 2014, 9:16pm

>153 mckait: Thanks, Kath ;-)
I'm glad I made it to. I go through this every year - and just barely make it every year. I guess I'm pretty consistent at 75/yr.

>154 jnwelch: Hi Joe!
Thanks. I read a few of the poems to Ron - which he also liked - but seemed to think it couldn't be real since it didn't rhyme. ha!
I just didn't want the cat murder mystery to be #75. Didn't seem quite right after all the good books I read this year.

Dez. 18, 2014, 10:19pm

Congratulations on reaching the 75 book mark, Cee!

Dez. 19, 2014, 12:56am

woo hoo 75!!!
And it looks like you are reading some heavy subject matter too, good for you!

Dez. 19, 2014, 8:34am

Congratulations, Cee! We really brought it down to the wire this year, didn't we? Whew!

No goals for me next year. I've some books in mind, but I'm not setting anything in stone.

What do you have in mind?

Dez. 19, 2014, 10:18pm


Dez. 20, 2014, 1:08am

Yay! Congratulations on meeting your reading goal this year, Cee!

Dez. 20, 2014, 2:03am

>146 -Cee-:, What an incredible review!!!!! The Living is now on the TBR pile. Thanks for this excellent recommendation.

And, your opening photos are wonderful!

Congratulations on reaching the 75 book mark!

Dez. 20, 2014, 7:04pm

I have long "meant" to read The Living. Now I'm officially adding it to my wish list. Thank you for the nudge, Cee.

Dez. 21, 2014, 10:02pm

Congratulations on 75, Cee!!!

Dez. 23, 2014, 1:49pm

Congrats on 75 books, Cee~/~Sis

Dez. 23, 2014, 2:10pm

Seeing as I am on *that* side of the world, it is already Christmas Eve here, so I can officially make Happy Christmas visits.
I hope you have a great one, and can find some time to sneak off to snuggle in a comfy chair with a book and a drink.

Dez. 23, 2014, 2:44pm

Yay Claudia! You made 75... not that numbers matter, but it does feel good to make it all the same, I know. I was hoping to make it to 250 since I was on quite a good run this year, but ding dang, Pierre had to come along and mess up my great scoring average. I tell you, life is just TOO unfair!!! :-D

Hope all is well with you my dear.


Dez. 23, 2014, 10:41pm

A special Merry Christmas to my Secret Santa of 2013, Cee! I hope you have a wonderful Christmas! It's Chrismas Eve's eve, and so I am starting the rounds of wishing my 75er friends the merriest of Christmases or whatever the solstice celebration of their choice is.

Dez. 24, 2014, 4:36pm

Happy Christmas Cee!

Dez. 24, 2014, 10:13pm

Merry Christmas, Cee!

Dez. 24, 2014, 10:41pm

Happy Holidays, Cee!

Dez. 25, 2014, 4:20pm

Yay for 75!

I loved The Living.

Merry Christmas!
On the eve: Do I smell turkey?
During: Worn out:

Dez. 25, 2014, 11:35pm

Cee, I just read about your Christmas day on the Christmas swap page and immediately came over here to send you hugs.
I hope your mom is okay.

Dez. 26, 2014, 3:37pm

hope all is well with you xo

Dez. 27, 2014, 12:45am

Cee, have a wonderful festive season.

Dez. 27, 2014, 11:26am

I'm so out of season now... but,
Thanks to all who came here to wish me season's greetings. It's been a most disruptive Christmas for us and I feel bad I was not here to send out my own wishes.

Things are somewhat calming down for the moment but we still have "a long row to hoe", as they say. Mom is not good. She has a systemic infection - incl the flu. Oh yes, she (like all the others) had the flu shot. Not working this year. She is so out of it - talking crazy, hallucinating, delusional, pulling out her IV, stuffing gauze pads/ kleenex in her mouth, etc. I do think she will recover and probably need to be in a rehab facility after the hospital. This may be the time to move her to a higher level of care in a nursing home which we see coming anyway. *heavy sigh*

Anyway - special thanks to Roni, Megan, Gail, Jim, Joanne, Linda, Ellen, Terri, Connie, Ilana, Rhian, Chelle, Jess, Lucy, Kath, and Paul! I sure appreciate the good wishes. I may not be much on LT but I will think of you all and be grateful for these friendships.

Hugs to everyone - messaging and lurking.
There is still joy to be found all around ;-)

Dez. 27, 2014, 11:30am

Cee, so sorry to hear of your mother's illness. What a horrible thing to deal with any time, let alone at the holidays! My thoughs and prayers and good wishes are with you and with her.

Dez. 27, 2014, 11:38am

Thanks, Terri. I've been doing a lot of praying and have gotten to the point I'm not even sure just what to pray for any more. I pray for her. I pray for me. I pray for everyone who has to deal with either one of us. Do I pray for recovery or an eternal home for her? I guess it's all in the hands of God and the universe. I just don't want to get sick myself till this is all resolved so I'm letting the small things go and trying to get enough good rest.

Dez. 29, 2014, 4:27pm

Yikes. Sorry to hear about your mother, Cee. Mine got crazy like that with an infection, too (childish, in her case), and then came out of it when the infection cleared. Hope that happens for you and your mom.

Best holiday wishes in the midst of the disruptions. Hope you have moments that are lighter.

Dez. 29, 2014, 8:32pm

So sorry to hear about your mom, Cee. A difficult time for sure. Wishing you peace and good health in the coming new year.

Dez. 31, 2014, 11:46pm

Dear Cee,

Happy New Year from your friend in Kuala Lumpur. Also wishing your mum a speedy recovery.

Jan. 1, 2015, 4:04pm

Hi Claudia! I've been very bad at keeping up with people the latter half of 2014 and vow to do better in 2015. I'm sorry to hear your Mom is having some difficulties. I hope you can find some good solutions.

I don't know if they have something similar in Maine but when my parents needed to be moved to a higher level of care in Arizona I used a type of geriatric counselor (don't remember the women's exact title) that helped me find a great place for them in a residential adult care home. There were only 8 residents and my parents got fantastic care there. I would never have been able to find this place on my own. It was hospice who recommended this woman to me and I didn't pay anything for her services--she got a commission from the adult care home. Just thought I'd mention it.

Try to remember to take good care of yourself. I remember how stressful it was to help my parents. Actually, I think it was the most stressful thing I've ever done.

Jan. 1, 2015, 6:51pm

Cee, I'm so sorry to hear that your mom is struggling. Please know that I'm wishing you all the best in 2015. You deserve a great year!

Jan. 1, 2015, 7:39pm

Here's hoping that the New Year will be bring healing for your mom, and serenity to you and your family as you deal with this awful setback. We have you all in our prayers.

Jan. 1, 2015, 8:12pm

Well, we missed the holiday celebrations this year. It happens. Unfortunately, I caught Mom's flu and then passed it on to Ron. We've been isolated from the world and trying to get through one day at a time... looooong days, I tell ya! Recovering slowly.

>178 jnwelch:
I think that is mostly what is happening to Mom - toxic encephalopathy caused by the infection. But it seems she has lost a lot in the process and I'm not sure if she will recover back to her "day-before-Christmas baseline"? We'll see. Thanks for your kind sentiments.

>179 Copperskye:
Thanks for your kind wishes. Wishing you the very same :-)

>180 PaulCranswick:
Yay! Fireworks. I'll bet the real ones in KL were fabulous.

>181 phebj:
Pat!!!!! It's so, so good to see you around here :-D
You had such a very busy 2014. Hopefully, you'll have another great year and keep them coming. I wish you the very best.

Thanks for your advice - which is always appreciated. We have some contacts to start with and have talked to one who is working for us to get Mom a place with "Memory Care". I know there are some good small home/residential options out there... pricey though.

>182 EBT1002:
Ellen and the gang! Thanks for stopping by with all that good cheer. Wishing you even more happiness in 2015!

Have not started a new thread for 2015. Don't have that kind of energy yet. Will try to get to it soon.

As Mom said to space (???) in the hospital ER (at the height of her delirium and hallucinations) "Oh, well. It could have been worser!"
I have no clue what she was referring to but I do wish I'd inherited her innate positive attitude. Maybe I will work on that for my New Year's resolution...

Jan. 1, 2015, 8:16pm

>183 tututhefirst:
Thanks, Tina!
It took me so long to type that last message, I almost missed you.
Serenity. Wow. Wouldn't that be sweet? I accept! Thanks for your kind thoughts and prayers.
Hope you and your family are blessed this year with all that brings you peace and moments of joy ;-)

Jan. 1, 2015, 8:30pm

Hi Cee! Sorry to hear about your Mom. Wishing you (and yours!) health, happiness and lots of good friends and books.

Jan. 12, 2015, 5:54pm

HI there--Just checking in on you. Hope everything is OK. Do you have a 2015 thread yet? Missing you!

Jan. 12, 2015, 8:13pm

Cee, I am sorry to read of the troubles with your mom. I hope she is healing and you are all doing well.
Miss you here friend!

Jan. 12, 2015, 10:00pm

Cee, you and yours are in my thoughts. I'm sorry you're going through this, and hope that the situation resolves in the best possible way.

Jan. 13, 2015, 11:59am

Cee, wishing you, Ron, and your mom better health in the new year. It sounds like you had a triple whammy!!! I hope you all make a full recovery.