Good morning! Today’s post will link up to The Sunday Salon, The Sunday Post and Stacking the Shelves, for weekly updates.

**Mailbox Monday is hosted at the home site: Mailbox Monday.

And let’s join Kathryn, our leader in It’s Monday! What Are You Reading?, at Book Date.


This week was a slog.  I ended up reading and reviewing three books, and two of them were review ARCs.  But I was still reading the third one until after dinner tonight. However, I did spend more than two hours on Skype with my eldest son and DIL in Prague.  That was time well spent.  We had the video feature on, so we could see faces and surroundings.  Video chatting is a recurring thing these days of “sheltering in place.”  On Monday I’m scheduled to have a video chat with my doctor, since we didn’t have the annual physical due to The Virus.

Movies were great.  I saw The Lost Husband on Amazon Prime, based on the Katherine Center book.  I started watching Normal People on Hulu and also took in a rather depressing flick on Prime starring Naomi Watts called The Wolf Hour.  Earlier I began viewing Notes on a Scandal, a movie starring Cate Blanchett and Judi Dench.  I actually once owned the DVD…but we all know what happened to many of my books and movies.  LOL.

While I did enjoy my books, they felt too much like work…I shouldn’t read two ARCs in the same week.  I have one more to read for May.  Perhaps I need to pass on more review books for a while if they feel like a job.  Something to ponder.

I did spend some time changing up my blogs…headers, etc.  I know that I am avoiding things when I start doing that. 

So…that was my week. Let’s have some tea or coffee and take a closer look at the week.


What a Difference a Year Makes…

Tuesday Potpourri:  Treasuring the Bounty…

Tuesday Excerpts:  “On Ocean Boulevard”

Hump Day Reading…

Wrapping up April…

Scrounging Around in my TBR:  Books from the Backlog

Bookish Friday:  “Pretty Things”

Rainy Days…and Fridays…

Review:  The New Girl, by Harriet Walker-NG-5/19Review:  The New Husband, by D. J. PalmerReview:  On Ocean Boulevard, by Mary Alice Monroe -NG-5/19



One paperback book came in my mailbox to replace another “lost” one…and I downloaded two new e-books.

Looking for Me, by Beth Hoffman


Have You Seen Me?, by Kate White

The Sweeney Sisters, by Lian Dolan


That was my week, and it felt exhausting!  There were some fun things, however,  including this cute little handbag that came today from Amazon:

What did your week look like?



  1. I hate it when reading feels like a chore. I started a book last week that I had been anticipating but I just wasn’t feeling it and set it aside after chapter 2… ugh. I need some new shows to watch, but I see some new stuff has popped onto Netflix so I may be doing some binging soon lol.

    “I know that I am avoiding things when I start doing that”. Haha right? I know the feeling. 🙂

    Hope your weekend is nice and have a good week ahead! 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thanks for stopping by, Greg; I know that I am just really tired and cranky, so those feelings color everything I do. Especially when any activity feels exhausting.

      Movie watching takes the least amount of energy right now, except my eyes do get tired. Sigh.

      Enjoy your weekend, too.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. It’s never good when reading feels like work. When I overbook myself that can happen, which is a bit like the week I have coming up. I don’t know how it happened, but I have a ton of posts to get scheduled and reviews to write. Normally I’m ahead, but life keeps disrupting things. I hope this coming week goes well for you!

    My Weekly Update

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks, Tressa, I do hate slogging along with my books. I did a better job this year scheduling my reviews, but May had three books, all releasing on the same day. Then nothing until June 30. But July and August have three reviews close together in each month. Sigh.

      I hope you can arrange your schedule in a way that works for you. Enjoy the week.


    1. Thanks, Cathy, it is small…and I knew it would be. But it has a really long strap…and lots of pockets inside, so I can make it work. The colors cheer me up. LOL

      I am ready to start the new Kate White book. Enjoy your week.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. Gayathri Lakshminarayanan

    I agree with you. Reading ARCs back to back might be a bit like a chore. And I dont want reading to be a chore. I hope you are staying safe!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks, Mary, there was also a Hallmark movie based on one of the beach books, starring Andie MacDowell…and I found it on Prime by adding the Hallmark channels. I like how that site allows us to add and subtract various channels. I think I might watch The Beach House today.

      Enjoy your reading and viewing, and stay safe and well.


  4. Oh I know that feeling only too well! I had 3 days this week when I more or less slumped on the sofa in front of the TV, dozing… I didn’t even feel energetic to watch a film. Though it was my writing that suffered, rather than my reading… I hope the coming week is a better one for both of us! Stay safe, Laurel.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks, Sarah, I hope so, too! I am pretty sure that I sit in one place too long…a lot. I need to move more. But we can only leave the apartment for short periods twice a day, at designated times. I often miss my window in time!

      Today I’m aching all over because I sat in the computer chair too long. It is soft and comfy but it is a chair, after all. I will pay today!

      I do have a great heating pad nearby and I will drape it over the chairback to ease the discomfort. Yay!

      Enjoy your day and your week.


  5. We have a busy week of video chats with therapist, doctors and teachers ahead of us this week. Wyatt’s school district rolled out a contingency plan for their students and since Wyatt gets OT, PT, and speech we also have meetings with them. I guess we are busy! Lol. Wyatt also missed his yearly physical and vaccines – it is freaking me out but we will get caught up.

    I’m glad you are hanging in there! I am planning on ordering some of that bread you mentioned this week!

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Diane

    Glad you got to catch up with your son and DIL on Skype. I got to spend a short time outdoors with my daughter and 2 granddaughters with our masks on yesterday – it was lovely except for the masks which make me have anxiety when I have one on.

    I think we, as seniors especially, need to give ourselves permission to abandon books that aren’t working but, like you I have a hard time doing that.

    Take care

    Liked by 1 person

    1. So true, Diane, and while I actually enjoyed my books this week, I felt pressured to finish the ARCs.

      I must cut down on the ones I accept.

      I’m glad you had time with family.

      Stay safe and well.


  7. thanks , if you ever see another blog with the globaldig from wordpress, I haven’t launched it yet, but I have a blog in the making. Glad to see that you saw some great films. I was so happy to pick up a free copy of ‘the night film’ this week from a neighbor. there’s so many friendly people out there!

    Liked by 1 person

  8. I’m avoiding reading anything that feels like a chore at the moment and if that means I don’t get something read by the release date then so be it! My grip on reading is too fragile with everything going on… I admire you for pushing through and reading two of them!

    Video calls are a strange new normal. I had a pub quiz with five of my friends on Friday via video chat. That was new! 🙂 It’s nice being able to see people though, even if it’s via a screen.

    Liked by 1 person

  9. It’s fun to get things changed up on the blog. It looks like the reads were at least very good to great reads. I try not to take too many ARCs. I think it helps me being a mix of eARCs and audios. Plus I fit in a bunch of library books because I don’t have to review them, just a couple of sentences on Goodreads. You have to do what works for you. I definitely felt behind this week.

    Take care, be kind and sensible!

    Anne – Books of My Heart Here is my Sunday Post   

    Liked by 1 person

  10. Sometimes, ARCs can definitely make reading and blogging feel like a job, and that’s not a good thing! Thank goodness you have a single more ARC for May. I hope that will be enjoyable, and that blogging and reading will feel like a hobby and fun again.

    I’m so happy you got do videochat with your son and DIL for two hours! Things are going pretty well in the Czech Republic, so hopefully, they are doing well and in good health!

    I hope you’ll have a wonderful week ahead 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks, Linda, I like hearing about countries that are being sensible about the virus and the lockdowns. The US is all over the place, with some governors responding to Trump’s mixed messages and disinformation, and others trying to do a good job, but getting bombarded by protestors.

      Enjoy your week…and I hope you and your hubby stay safe and well..

      Liked by 1 person

  11. I am so sorry to hear that your reading has felt like a chore this week, Laurel-Rain! I have had that feeling when I have had too many review copies I feel I must read, so now I always alternate between a review copy and then a book I just want to read. Although it does look like your film watching and video calling has made up for your reading. Take care and I hope your reading improves this coming week!

    Liked by 1 person

  12. I, too, plodded along this week with most of my time taken up by final papers. I fight the computer so hard when I grade on line, and the students don’t understand my techie handicap. LOL
    I guess each student thinks he/she is the only one I have. LOL

    Liked by 1 person

  13. Sophie @BewareOfTheReader

    I feel you on ARCs feeling more like work than fun Laurel! That’s why I try not to request more than 3 ARCs a month! I hope next week your reading mojo will be back.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks for visiting, Laura. I read both of Hoffman’s books, but this one was “lost” in the move, so I just had to replace it. I loved it for the interior design aspects.

      I have a thing for handbags…I once had a lot of them hanging on my hall tree, but those were left behind, too. I bought three purses from Amazon after I moved here.


  14. Susan

    Video chatting can be all right …. as long as there’s a glass of wine … and things to say. It’s been popular these days … almost every weekend we are video chatting with relatives far away, which we had never done before. I will look for The Lost Husband movie …. I need some good escape watching this week. You seem to know WordPress so well for your sites …. I grapple with it at times …. how did you learn how to use all the ins & outs of it? I have some things on my site I found not working so now I have to try to fix …. and not sure where to turn.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks for visiting, Susan, and I don’t know how to do fancy things on WordPress, like plug-ins, etc. But I learned how to change things like headers and themes and how to maneuver around the site from other bloggers.

      If I don’t know how to do something and other bloggers can’t help, I do contact WordPress support.

      Speaking of wine, a glass of red wine is included with our dinners on the trays they bring, and tonight I was settling in to enjoy mine…and then, from out of nowhere, my hand swept the glass over and I spilled it all! It was full when that happened. I could have cried. It wasn’t in a wine glass, but in an unbreakable tumbler…so there was that to celebrate. LOL

      Liked by 1 person

  15. Oh, I so know the feeling that the ARCs are a job. I need to re-think things a bit myself. I love your purse. I’ve been looking for one and now I think I better check out Amazon. Hope you have a great week!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks, Yvonne, after I moved here and had fewer opportunities to shop (even less so now!), I ordered more from Amazon. I have two other purses I got from them: one is a Coach and the other is from Michael Kors.

      Have fun shopping!


  16. I have actually been having more fun with my reading during the past few weeks since I have been ignoring my review schedule and just reading what I want (still trying to get some review books in though). It does make you think. I have not watched as many shows as I would have thought I would with all of this time at home. Nice new reads this week. I hope you enjoy them all and have a great week!

    Liked by 1 person

  17. Your new hang bag is adorable. I find that I can’t sit through movies lately. I do better with sit coms on Netflix, probably need the distractions from what is happening around the country. Love your new header. Have a great week. I hope all the books you choose are great reads.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks, Nise, I do love watching movies on my laptop, as I have a comfy chair with a high back. Then I put my heating pad over the back and lean into it. Bliss!

      I need the distractions of movies and shows, and books work some of the time. But this week’s ARCs were tedious.

      Enjoy your week!


  18. Literary Feline

    I am glad you were able to touch base with your son and daughter-in-law in Prague. I talked with my mother for quite a while on the phone tonight, which was nice. We haven’t seen each other since Christmas. It feels like way too long.

    I’ve been thinking about changing up my blog a little. I might just change the coloring and see if that is enough for me. I like to tinker too and this is the longest I’ve ever gone with one look.

    I hope you have a good week, Laurel-Rain. Happy Reading!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks for visiting, Wendy, and I do love changing things up. Almost like redecorating the house, lol.

      Changing colors can be enough sometimes. I tend to switch out the headers, too, even if the changes are small.

      Enjoy your week, and stay safe and well.


  19. I think sheltering in place is very tiring. And totally agree about ARC ‘s back to back feels like work. I have found it hard actually to get immersed in books although some have held me. Oh my I loved that Beth Hoffman book. How come she has written nothing else that I know of anyway.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I loved the Hoffman book, Kathryn; this second one even more than the first, since interior design was a big part of it. I keep hoping she’ll bring out another one!

      I had been struggling with my leaping cursor for a while, since one of the updates had wiped out the fix I had. Well, my Prague son gave me some ideas and instructions…and it’s fixed! I hope I didn’t speak too soon. LOL

      Have a great week, and stay well and safe.

      Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks for stopping by, Marg, and I am so glad that we have the technology to stay in touch so well!

      Enjoy your week and your books, and I am loving the handbag, too…except where will I use it? Locked in place in my apartment. Oh, yes, someday.


    1. Thanks, Veronica, and while Amazon doesn’t have everything for the household/pharmacy these days, we can still find unessential items like handbags, lol.

      I actually discovered some food items, too, like the special organic bread that I buy in the shops here, but can’t get out to nowadays…

      Enjoy your week.


    1. Thanks, Kathy, I justify replacing books I’ve loved because I enjoy being surrounded by these books and memories of them, even if I never reread them!

      I don’t know when I’ll have the chance to go out with that purse…but meanwhile, I like seeing it hanging over that cupboard door.

      I can’t even imagine going through a Pandemic like this one without the help of technology and video calls!

      Enjoy your week.


  20. Cheryl Malandrinos

    I think we can’t help but feel like everything is a chore lately. So glad you got to chat with your son and DIL. Not sure how I would feel about video chatting with my doctor. Luckily, my physical ended up being before all this stuff happened. I ended up taking a break from reviewing books for a while. Sometimes, you just need time to read what you want without a schedule.

    Your new books look good. Sister stories are really in right now. Hope you enjoy them all.


    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks for visiting, Cheryl, I am glad that my major health issues for the year had already been resolved. If this had happened before I had my surgery and before I recovered, it could have been a disaster.

      We find ourselves looking at the silver linings.

      Enjoy your books, and I have definitely planned to review fewer books after my current stack is gone.


  21. Oh, I thought something looked different when I landed here today! I agree with you, reading shouldn’t feel like a job. I used to read ARCs from Netgalley but stopped when it started feeling like work.

    Have You Seen Me sounds good! I hope you enjoy it. Have a great week and happy reading!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks, Kay, I had already started skipping past books from authors unknown to me after finding too many that just didn’t work.

      I do like returning to old and new favorite authors more often.

      Enjoy your week.


  22. Gorgeous handbag! I had a distance picnic with my dau., grandson and s-i-l yesterday. They brought a blanket and sat at the end of the lawn and we chatted for a half hour. So good to see them live – rather than at the end of a screen.
    Some interesting reading you’re doing – hope you have a great week of reading ahead.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. That picnic sounds lovely, Bev, and I am looking forward to a time when I can enjoy that kind of outing. We will probably be “locked down” in our apartments for a while, except for walks in this courtyard at scheduled times, and no visitors.

      Sigh. Enjoy your week and your books.


  23. Glad you had a nice chat with your son and DIL! And I totally agree with you! I stopped accepting a lot of ARCs years ago because they were feeling too much like a job. Now I only accept the ones that I know I’d pick up even if I wasn’t given the ARC.

    Liked by 1 person

  24. What a GREAT week even though it was a slow one for you.

    LOVE your purse…adorable.

    I’m going to check out THE LOST HUSBAND…thanks for the tip.

    I KNOW you are going to love HAVE YOU SEEN ME. 🙂

    I hope this week is a better one for you.

    Take care.

    Liked by 1 person

  25. It’s awful when reading feels like a chore… hope this turns around for you soon. I’ve been enjoying Zoom calls with all of my siblings and parents. It’s become a regular Sunday evening event for us… a great way to stay connected. The Sweeney Sisters has gotten some very positive initial review… will be sure to keep an eye out for your thoughts. Have a good week.

    Liked by 1 person

  26. Kathy Martin

    I’m getting ready to abandon the review book I’m currently trudging through. I’m at 50% and not enjoying it at all. I’m pretty sure that is a statement about me and not about the book. It just isn’t what I want to read now. I do feel guilty about quitting the book when I’m so far into it. Come see my week here. Happy reading!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. I can relate to those feelings, Kathy, and I’m pretty sure my low tolerance for many books right now is about me and what is happening around us.

      I do find that the thrillers still keep me engaged throughout. Enjoy more books soon!


  27. It’s been a slog! I know what you mean about puttering around as a means of avoidance. I tried to reduce clutter on my blog a while ago, but my blog really needs an overhaul. I just don’t have the energy, now that I have the time! Hope the world gets a reboot soon!

    Liked by 1 person

  28. Pretty handbag!
    I know, reading shouldn’t feel like work. It happens to me too when I leave the review books until the last minute then it feels like work to read them sometimes. That’s why I toned down on accepting review books. I’ve heard good things about Beth Hoffman, enjoy your books this week and stay safe!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks, Nai, I loved the Beth Hoffman book, so I’m glad I decided to “buy it again.”

      I just found out that my last May ARC, the one I planned to read next week, has just been released. Early!

      But…I will just read it today, and as I reread the blurb, I remembered why I accepted it. Now I am looking forward to it.

      Enjoy your week and stay safe and well.


  29. “A slog” sounds like an apt description for me too. Sorry that the reading felt like work. That isn’t fun and we certainly should be enjoying our reading.
    Cute purse!
    I hope this week is better for you.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks, Martha, I am hoping for better reading ahead. My final May ARC got moved up and was released yesterday, so I’m reading it now. Luckily it is really good. I’m sure having a later than usual review won’t be a problem for them since they moved the date up!

      Enjoy your week.


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