Thursday, March 31, 2011

Booking Through Thursday

This week's question asks what is the strangest thing I have ever read.  Well, while it  is technically a book, I would have to say the telephone directory.  Now, before you say that isn't odd -- I guess the circumstances surrounding my reading it are what are odd.  You see, like many teenagers, I had a boyfriend who was the one I hung out with when I was between "real" boyfriends.  I was the same sort of "girlfriend" to him.  Anyway, we would talk  on the phone for hours and when we ran out of things to talk about, we would read the phone book together and find as many funny names as we could.  The funniest that comes to mind was Weldon Rumproast.  I now feel bad about making fun of Mr. Rumproast's name but you have to admit -- it is unique!  As far as teenagers reading the phonebook for entertainment -- what can I say -- we were really innocent!
Wordless Wednesday

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

I am still reading "The Physick Book of Deliverance Dane" and have posted a couple of teasers from it already so I am going to move on to one of the two newly acquired books.

This teaser is from "The Postmistress"  by Sarah Blake.  I haven't started reading it yet so I will just open the book and start there.

"No, it became clear to them that Miss Iris James's motives were best understood by looking around at the Franklin post office.  As in any of their houses, the spirit of the woman had insinuated itself firmly there." Page 51

So, there you have it.  Not much to go on and not very intriguing but the book looks to be promising.  It takes place in Franklin, Massachusetts in 1940.  It involves the townspeople of this small town during World War II, their attitudes toward the world and to themselves. 

Since I haven't started it, I can't say much more but I am looking forward to reading this one.

Sunday, March 27, 2011

Booking Through Thursday

Series? Or stand alone books?

Late with this, again, I realize but this has been a very busy week.  So, the question is, do I prefer series books or stand alone books?  Well, it depends -- cop out answer, I realize but it is true.

If it is a good series, like the Mitford series, I love it because if the book is that good, I really hate to see it end.  However, if it is mediocre, or worse, it is a problem for me because I have a problem not finishing things and a bad series can be a real drag.

For that same reason, I like stand alone books.  Sometimes, in series, they start out great and, like the movie that should have ended half an hour earlier, they sort of "wear out their welcome".  It is especially satisfying when the entire story can be told within one cover.  In the case of the Mitford series (I know, I know), the original story really needs to be told in multiple books.  However, Karon's new Fr. Tim series is stand alone.  Even though the second book subtly references the first, you don't have to have read the first to read the second.  With that said, however, if you haven't read the first, you will want to.

So, I guess my answer to the question is -- both -- depends on the book, the topic, and the author. 

Friday, March 25, 2011

Following the Lead

of LoneStarPrep  I am going to do the ABC meme.  This is an alphabetized list of facts about yourself -- join me in the fun!

A  Age:  Old enough to know better, young enough to not care! Ok, maybe not that young anymore but I really don't want to put an actual NUMBER up here.

B  Bed size:  king -- getting harder to put sheets on due to A.

C  Chore you hate:  eh, pretty much all of them now. 

D  Dogs -- I don't have one but if I did it would be a clone of my sweet Tessie -- a Cairn Terrier.

E  Essential start to your day -  waking up.

F  Favorite color -- don't actually have one

G  Gold or silver -- either -- seems I have a "neutral" complexion which means I can wear either equally well. 

H   Height -- well, I USED to be 5'5 1/2" but after people kept asking me if I was shrinking I had the hubs measure me and I am now 5' 4 1/2" .  I think I will have him remeasure me -- I don't feel any shorter.

I  Instrument you play -- I used to play the piano but now I have no piano so I don't play anything

J  Job title -- wife, mother, grandmother, aunt, cousin, homemaker although I don't really do any work anymore

K  Kids -- two but they aren't kids anymore

L  Live -- Texas

M  My mom's name -- which name -- the one she went by or the one we barely realized she had been given at birth. 

N  Nickname -- Liss

O  Overnight hospital stay -- see K

P  Pet Peeve -- don't really have any except for the giant construction project behind my house.  Other than that, I am pretty laid back.

Q  Quote from a movie -- "Frankly, my dear, I don't give a damn."  I think that is how it went.

R   Righty/lefty?  Righty unless I am sitting on the left side of my husband in a restaurant and then I am a lefty because he is too and if I don't eat with my left hand, we run into each other.

S  Sibling -- zero

T  time you wake up -- depends on several factors none being that I am rested

U underwear -- I don't understand the question. 

V  veggies you dislike -- zero

W  what makes you run late?  Nothing anymore.  Kids used to.

X  Xrays you have had -- knees when 11 years old -- teeth, teeth, teeth all the time with the teeth already.

Y  Yummy food you make -- uh, I am not a good cook however, people do ask for my potato salad.

Z  zoo animal -- It is too hot to go to the zoo -- I guess I really like the penguins. And the bears.  Not crazy about the hippos.

Okie dokie, that is me!

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Teaser Tuesday

I have been busy so I am only a couple of chapters into "The Physick Book of Deliverance Dane".  It started out a bit slow but picked up quickly.  It begins with Connie Goodwin taking her oral exams so she an begin her research for her doctoral dissertation.  She is, however, interrupted by her mother wanting her to deal with her grandmother's house which has stood vacant for twenty years.  Connie is not happy.  However, as I left off, she and her roommate and best friend Liz have arrived at the house to determine how much of a hot mess they are in.

The next chapter, "Interlude", takes us to Salem Town, Massachusetts, mid-June 1862.  And here is my teaser-

"The day outside was dusty and warm, and yellow, sunbeams spilled through the meetinghouse windows, casting bright puddles of light on the wood-planked floor.  Appleton sat in a majestic tapestried armchair behind the broad library table at the front of the room, elbows propped on the table, arms folded." Page 51.

Monday, March 14, 2011

Blue Monday

Just sitting at our favorite, neighborhood fish place -- Rockfish -- and I looked around and saw this lovely sign.  Fortunately, I had the camera with me.  I think I need a new camera, though, because all my photos are turning out blurry lately.  Could it be because I dropped it on the stone floor?  Hmm.  Could it be because I am just getting old and shaky?  Maybe a bit of both.  Anyway, happy Blue Monday.

Saturday, March 12, 2011

Five Things I Can't Live Without

There is a popular meme circulating dealing with the five things the person writing the meme can't live without.  I sort of take issue with this, even though I know it is all in fun, because unless you are talking about food, water and shelter, I don't really know of any of the trappings of today's life that we can't live without.  Look at the generations of people who lived without much of what we have today.So, I am changing things up a bit. My meme is going to be about preferences. Also, I won't be adding God, Hubs, The Kids (all four) or the G-Kids (3) because, after all, they are NOT THINGS, they are all a very necessary, serious, life sustaining part of my life and will not be part of something as superfluous as a blog meme.

So, I prefer to call my meme --

The Five Things I PREFER Not To Live Without

1.  Central heat and air.  I live in Texas,  'Nuf said!

2.  Refrigeration.  Living out of a cooler isn't fun unless you are camping.  A power outage isn't considered camping in my book.

3.  Books.  Once a reader, always a reader.  I am not complete unless I have a book to read.  Or a magazine.

4.  My gas stove.  While I did have to override the electric igniter when we had the power outage during the Big Snow last year, I could light it with a match and cook.  So, yeah, no electric cook tops for me anymore.

5.  My glasses.  While I can see from here to probably Austin, I can't, however, read the aforementioned book without specs.  So, yeah, gotta have them.

So, there you have it.  Maybe the next meme should be called "Five Things We Could All Do Better Without".  I have a list for that too but that is another post.

Friday, March 11, 2011

The Bracelet

Hmm, my title sounds a bit like a Nicholas Sparks novel, doesn't it?  I digress.  This photo was taken when my daughter requested a picture of my bracelet to use on her blog.    I hadn't paid too much attention to this piece of jewelry in a long time as I now have a much smaller one with rememberances of my children and grandchildren on it.  It doesn't make nearly as much noise in church.  This bracelet has much more history to it, however.

I was given the bracelet on my 16th birthday by my boyfriend, now husband.  I won't even pretend to tell you how long ago that was just suffice it to say it  has been a while.  One of my charms is a replica of the Hemisfair Tower commemorating Hemisfair '68 in San Antonio.

In the center of the bracelet, there is a round charm that says Happy Birthday -- this is the charm that he put on the bracelet to give to me that birthday.  I have been collecting charms ever since and from all sorts of places.

My husband has traveled a great deal in his career and he has brought me all sorts of souvenirs, many of them charms.  I have one from Louisiana, New Jersey, Illinois, Texas and Canada.  I have a tatting shuttle to remind me of my Aunt Bernice, a thimble because I sew, a quilt square because I quilt, a piano because I used to play the piano.  I have a Disney "Figaro" which is sort of a joke between the Hubs and me, a ballet shoe because I used to dance. There are various happy birthday and I love you charms but I guess the most unusual is the grocery cart.  My husband used to work at a grocery store in San Antonio by the name of HEB.  While surfing around Ebay one evening my daughter found this charm that was made by James Avery as a promotion for the store.  I snatched that one up right away -- they are not easy come by and I figured I might not find another.  My daughter bought me an airplane to remind me of my first flight -- a long haul to the UK, no less -- I don't believe in starting small!  Of course, I had to pick up a replica of the crown jewels in the UK.  My favorite, aside from the first ever to be put on the bracelet, is the one that says "Best Mom". 

I will probably always collect charms -- it was sort of a rite of passage of a teen in the 50's and 60's and I find the bracelets so charming.  When I see them in the antique stores I often wonder about the person they belonged to and how their memories are so much like every other girl of that era.  I have tried to continue the tradition of charm bracelets with my daughter and daughter-in-law but they are on their own with it now -- they have their own memories to add and I hope they will continue it with their own daughters.
The Whole Week in One Fell Swoop

I have been trying to post more regularly but I have a problem in that some days I just simply have nothing of any interest to say.  So, in order to keep me on an even keel, I like to employ several "meme's" so to speak. This week, I have gotten completely off track and have done none of them so I am going to combine them all into one and try again next week.  so, here goes.

Blue Monday

Learning to catagorize by color

Teaser Tuesdays

This weeks Teaser is from "The Physick Book of Deliverance Dane" by Katherine

"After a few more minutes spent yanking on the last stubborn vines, Connie sat back on her heels and regarded the revealed gate.  Its iron was so pitted with rust and age that she feared it might dissolve at her touch."

Wordless Wednesday

Booking Through Thursday -- Multi-tasking

I do not multi-task.  I am not good at it.  With anything.  If I am reading, most likely the television is on because the Hubs is sitting in the next chair.  If the book is good, I can tune out the tv but if the book  is just so-so, I end up watching the tv but I don't do both at the same time.  I have never brushed my teeth while reading a book but I have actually ridden in the car and read but not while I was driving -- little joke there.

Friday Fill-Ins

1.  Oh gross! I thought it was chicken!

2.  Ah, well, THAT'S off my bucket list.

3.  No, thank you.

4.  One thing I can play on the piano is Heart and Soul.

5.  and then, I would like to buy a lottery ticket and win a boatload of money.

6.  I can't forget all the lies they told us.

7.  And as for the weekend, tonight I am looking forward to reading, tomorrow my plans include yard work and Sunday I want to go to church and relax.

Thursday, March 03, 2011

Booking Through Thursday

Do you cheat and peek at the ends of books?  (Come on, be honest).

Boringly enough, no, I don't.  I like the process of reading and I don't like jumping ahead.  I don't even jump through slow parts.  Regardless of the genre, I like to have the story build and peak, I am  not in a hurry just to get to the end.  To me, reading a book is akin to watching a movie -- it has to unfold.

Tuesday, March 01, 2011

It is time for another Tuesday Teaser.  I really like doing these little glimpses into books -- opens up opportunities for others to look at works they might ordinarily pass by.

This week my teaser comes from The Physick Book of Deliverance Dane by Katherine Howe.  While "shopping" my own bookshelves for something new to start, I ran across this book which has been there for awhile.  I picked it up hoping it would be similar to The Lace Reader by Brunonia Barry.  I have hopes for this novel as it's author, although raised in Houston, Texas, has her roots in Massachusetts and is related to two women involved in the Salem Witch Trials.

So, without further ado, here is my teaser.  Since I am now just starting the book, I will begin at the beginning -- first two lines on the first page, the prologue.

"Peter Petford slipped a long wooden spoon into the simmering iron pot of lentils hanging over the fire and tried to push the worry from his stomach.  He edged his low stool nearer to the hearth and leaned forward, one elbow propped on his knee, breathing in the aroma of stewed split peas mixed with burning apple wood."

Yum.  Now we begin.