Saturday, March 23, 2019

Weekly Wrap-up: Three Good Novels Read, the World's Best Chocolate Chip Cookies, and a New Grandson



Read...


Image result for jude the obscure

I've finished three good novels this week, all three over four hundred pages long, and they were all beautifully written. I've always considered The Bell Jar the most bleak book I've ever read, but now I've got a new champion---Jude the Obscure. Poor Jude wants to become a scholar but he is thwarted by the two women who come to dominate his life. My full review for Jude the Obscure is here. For our book club this month we were asked to pick a book by Susan Vreeland and read it. I picked Luncheon of the Boating Party because (1) it is based on a painting I love and (2) it takes place just outside of Paris. I didn't know much about Renoir before I read this book, but now I think I could write his biography. So much research went into the writing of this book. My full review for Luncheon of the Boating Party is here. What a wonderful character Count Alexander Rostov in A Gentleman in Moscow is. I fell in love with this man, with the grace he bestows on both his friends and enemies alike. My full review for A Gentleman in Moscow is here.


Side by Side: A Celebration of DadsJuana and Lucas by Juana MedinaSweet Dreamers by Isabelle SimlerCarter Reads the Newspaper by Deborah Hopkinson

This week I also read and reviewed: 
Sweet Dreamers by Isabelle Simler
Carter Reads the Newspaper by Deborah Hopkinson and Don Tate



Reading...

 Image result for don quixote book

Yep. Don Quixote. Three hundred pages to go. I'm finishing this one next week. No matter what.



Book-ish...




Dewey's 24-Hour Readathon is coming on April 6. What is Dewey’s 24-Hour Read-a-thon? For 24 hours, we read books, post to our blogs, Twitters, Instagrams, Litsy, Facebook, Goodreads and MORE about our reading, and visit other readers’ homes online. We also participate in mini-challenges throughout the day. It happens twice a year, in April and in October. The readathon will begin promptly at 8 am Eastern time. Register here.





Baking, photography, drawing, and other projects...



Laura at Joy Food Sunshine calls these The Best Chocolate Chip Cookie Recipe Ever, and I think I agree. The secret? (1) Butter. Lots of butter. (2) Chocolate. Add as much as you want. (3) Slightly underbake these.







I worked on my various Buzzes---Bakerbuzz, Photobuzz, Naturebuzz, and Gardenbuzz---this week. I've daubed them with paint and bees. What do you think?







And the most exciting news of all...the arrival of our second grandchild, Wyatt Nance! He weighed in at 9 lbs. 13 oz. and he has a full head of hair. He was happily greeted by his big sister, Annie, along with his mom and dad and his grandparents. We are in love.







The Sunday Salon 

I’ve taken the helm of one of our earliest book blogging memes, The Sunday Salon. I’d love to have you stop by my blog, Readerbuzz, here and post a link to your blog. The Sunday Salon was created twelve years ago to encourage book conversations, and I hope to do the same by sharing links and visiting others’ blogs. I will keep also he Facebook group for Sunday Salon.

I would be very happy if you would spread the word about the Sunday Salon. Encourage others to post here and/or on Facebook. Post the graphic on social media. 


Other places where you may like to link up are below. Click on the picture to visit the site.






My linkup for Sunday Salon is below. If you wish to also post a link at Facebook, you can also do that. My hope is that you will post here and/or at FB and then visit other bloggers. Sunday Salon is to encourage conversations about books and book-ish things.




Wednesday, March 20, 2019

A Silent Retreat: Kairos, A Room for Creative Expression


I went on a silent retreat.

There were many places to explore on the retreat.

My favorite was Kairos.





Kairos is a room for creative expression.



Everything you need is in this room.









I was fascinated to read this article about Holy Play.


I also loved seeing Natalie Goldberg's suggestions for how to write.



I spent most of my time with watercolors.



I will return to Kairos.





For more wordless photos, go to Wordless Wednesday.

Saturday Snapshot is hosted by A Web of StoriesTo participate in Saturday Snapshot: post a photo that you (or a friend or family member) have taken and then leave a direct link to your post in the Mister Linky at A Web of Stories.



Tuesday, March 19, 2019

Books I Want to Read This Spring


I'm joining in on Anne's My Own Books Reading Challenge this spring. I've done here what Anne has asked and placed the names of ten of my own books on pieces of paper. Then I drew the reading order. My goal is to try to read these ten books by May 15th. That gives me two months.

Here is what I plan to read:

#1 A Gentleman in Moscow by Amos Towles
#2 Jude the Obscure by Thomas Hardy
#3 Luncheon of the Boating Party by Susan Vreeland
#4 The Wonderful "O" by James Thurber
#5 An American Marriage by Tayari Jones
#6 Circe by Madeline Miller
#7 Salt to the Sea by Ruth Sepetys
#8 Turtles All the Way Down by John Green
#9 North American Pirates and Their Lost Treasure by W. C. Jameson
#10 La Boheme by Giacomo Puccini


Of course, who knows what I will bring home that is fresh and exciting from the library conference in April and from BookExpo in May?! And who knows what lovely books publishers and authors will convince me to try this spring?!

What are you hoping to read this spring?



Top Ten Tuesday was created by The Broke and the Bookish in June of 2010 and was moved to That Artsy Reader Girl in January of 2018. It was born of a love of lists, a love of books, and a desire to bring bookish friends together. Each Tuesday That Artsy Reader Girl assigns a topic and then post her top ten list that fits that topic. You’re more than welcome to join her and create your own top ten (or 2, 5, 20, etc.) list as well. Feel free to put a unique spin on the topic to make it work for you! Please link back to That Artsy Reader Girl in your own post so that others know where to find more information.

Sunday, March 17, 2019

Weekly Wrap-up: 5 More Books Read, New Buzzes, a Cherry Pie, and a Five-Leaf Clover (?!)

Read...



I added five more books to the read column of my 1001 Children's Books list. None of which I actually read. No, I've searched for years for these books, and this week I finally decided to take a look on YouTube and see if I could at least have these books read to me.

These books give me a grand total of 643 books read out of 1001. That leaves me with only 358 books to go.






Reading...



I'm currently reading Fifty Things That Aren't My Fault by the creator of the Cathy comic, and A Gentleman in Moscow and Luncheon of the Boating Party by Susan Vreeland. Plus, of course, Don Quixote and Jude the Obscure..





Book-ish...




Dewey's 24-Hour Readathon is coming once again on April 6. What is Dewey’s 24-Hour Read-a-thon? For 24 hours, we read books, post to our blogs, Twitters, Instagrams, Litsy, Facebook, Goodreads and MORE about our reading, and visit other readers’ homes online. We also participate in mini-challenges throughout the day. It happens twice a year, in April and in October. The readathon will begin promptly at 8 am Eastern time. Register here.





I've listed and drawn the names of ten books from my own stacks to try to read by May 15th for Anne's My Own Books Reading Challenge. As usual for me, I've loaded the dice by listing four books (the first four, coincidentally) that I am already reading. Wouldn't it be lovely if I could get to most of these?






Baking, photography, drawing, and other projects...



A cherry pie and a peach pie. The real delight was the crust, made from pâte brisée





I decided to try this Irish Creme Poundcake this morning. The original recipe from the New York Times didn't include the garish green coloring in the icing, but, hey, it's St. Paddy's Day.







I'm working hard on my various Buzzes---Bakerbuzz, Photobuzz, Naturebuzz, and Gardenbuzz. I hope to ink them in and add some paint this week.







I have a friend who often finds four-leaf clovers in her yard. We marvel over this; scientists say that only 1 in 10,000 clovers is a four-leaf clover. It is said that St. Patrick used the three-leaf shamrock to teach about the Holy Trinity, while the four-leaf clover stands for faith, hope, love, and luck. This year my friend has found several very unusual clover, and I grabbed one when she was sharing them at the fish fry last Friday night. I wonder if this brings even more luck. And what could the fifth leaf be for?










The Sunday Salon 

I’ve taken the helm of one of our earliest book blogging memes, The Sunday Salon. I’d love to have you stop by my blog, Readerbuzz, here and post a link to your blog. The Sunday Salon was created twelve years ago to encourage book conversations, and I hope to do the same by sharing links and visiting others’ blogs. I will keep also he Facebook group for Sunday Salon.

I would be very happy if you would spread the word about the Sunday Salon. Encourage others to post here and/or on Facebook. Post the graphic on social media. 


My linkup for Sunday Salon is here. If you wish to also post a link at Facebook, you can also do that. My hope is that you will post here and/or at FB and then visit other bloggers. Sunday Salon is to encourage conversations about books and book-ish things.