COFFEE CHAT: A COZY BREAKFAST & A LITTLE WHINING…

Good morning!  Let’s gather around with our caffeinated beverages to chat about our weeks, our books, and our perspectives.  Join our host at Bookishly Boisterous to see what others are sharing.

As I sit at my laptop, with my new breakfast tray behind me, I am feeling cozy and comfortable.  I have read and reviewed two enjoyable books so far this week.  My rearranging of my stuff is on pause for the moment, as I struggle with other issues.  Okay, something to whine about, but in a minute!  But first, here is my breakfast tray, a new one that arrived yesterday. Simple breakfast of oatmeal, juice, coffee, and French Toast.

  • I do love the rustic look of the tray, and while there were several colors, rusty red is a favorite of mine.
  • Books read and reviewed so far:  The Golden Cage, by Camilla Lackberg, a NetGalley ARC, release date – 7/7/20; and The House Guest, by Mark Edwards.
  • The problem I will share is about Facebook…and my Rainy Days and Mondays blog.  I have had that very blog since 2009, and pretty regularly link my posts on Facebook.  But when I tried to link my Hump Day (WWW post) this week, and then the review of The House Guest, FB removed the posts from my FB site and said the posts were reported as “abusive.”  Of course I am disputing this—because why now?  The content was bookish!  I’ve discovered that others have encountered this problem with FB.  So…what to do?
  • So far, I haven’t run into this issue with my other blogs, or even with my FB page for that blog.  Weird, right?
  • Now…I have laid it on the table.  Ideas?  Suggestions?  Stop going to Facebook?  LOL
  • I am excited about my new Kindle cover.  My old one was getting a little beat up, so this new one arrived yesterday.  What a great day of deliveries I had!

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That was my week so far.  What was yours like?  Enjoy, stay safe, and watch your step on FB, LOL.

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WEEKLY UPDATES: ANOTHER WEEK FLEW BY…

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.

 

Another week flew by almost seamlessly, but my reading was lackluster.  Only two books read and reviewed.  They were good ones, though, and I can only blame my compulsions for other things.  I did write six blog posts, however.  At least I am not writing this update late in the evening.  I will be heading to the dining room shortly for our “socially distanced” dinner.

I also found a miniseries to enjoy on Netflix:  Tales of the City.  Set in SF, it is based on the books by Armistead Maupin.

I finished fixing up my closet this week.  I had moved the Jelly Cupboard into the entry way, arranged all my clothes in the closet (some of them had been folded away and others had been on my hall tree).  The final piece of the task was hanging a curtain on a rod to conceal my wardrobe. 

Now let’s take a closer look at the week.

LAST WEEK ON THE BLOGS:

Tuesday Excerpts:  “The Golden Cage”

Tuesday Potpourri:  A Bookish Journey

A Hump Day of Reading…

Adding Another Book from the Backlog…

Bookish Friday:  “The Half Sister”

Coffee Chat:  Reading & Reshuffling…

Review:  You Can’t Catch Me, by Catherine McKenzieReview:  The Guest List, by Lucy Foley

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INCOMING BOOKS:

One book came in my physical mailbox, and another came from NetGalley.  I also downloaded two e-books.

Open House, by Elizabeth Berg – (Replacement Copy for Reread)

Take It Back, by Kia Abdullah (NG – 12/8/20)

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Downloads:

The Girl from Widow Hills, by Megan Miranda

The Swap, by Robyn Harding

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CURRENTLY READING:  I am just beginning to read a NetGalley ARC for a book coming out on July 7.  The Golden Cage, by Camilla Lackberg.

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That was my week. What did yours look like?  And because restaurant dining is still a future event, I found another photo from the past that I am savoring.  Three years ago, I enjoyed this corn chowder and a cocktail at Mimi’s.

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COFFEE CHAT: READING & RESHUFFLING…

Good morning!  Let’s gather around with our caffeinated beverages to chat about our weeks, our books, and our perspectives.  Join our host at Bookishly Boisterous to see what others are sharing.

My Coffee Chat is late again this week, but I am eager to talk about what has been happening so far.  This morning I am waiting for my Instacart Order, which is turning into a regular event.  Goodies are headed my way from Save Mart!The dining room continues to serve better food on the days we eat there…which is still every other day.  I am adjusting.

  • I am currently reading The Guest List, by Lucy Foley; an enjoyable read so far, but as sometimes happens, I am easily distracted by other events.  Movies, rearranging my space (compulsively!), and enjoying the time in the dining room, socializing six feet apart.
  • I am also exercising regularly in the activity room.
  • This week I read and loved You Can’t Catch Me, by Catherine McKenzie.
  • On Netflix, I discovered a miniseries based on some books I have enjoyed: Tales of the City; books by Armistead Maupin.
  • I finally finished changing up my closet, with my cupboard moved into the entry way.  A new curtain covers the opening to my wardrobe space.

  • Have I finally finished fiddling around with my stuff?  Probably not, but I think I’ll be okay for a while.  I will add books to my bookshelf as they come in.

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How are you handling the crazy world in which we now live?  Hopeful for the future, or taking things a day at a time?  Stay safe!

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WEEKLY UPDATES: A BUSY WEEK…

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.

How did the week fly by so quickly, with so little reading to show for it?  Probably because I was easily distracted by other things, like rearranging my space…again.  And movies and shows on Netflix, Hulu, and Prime.

In the end, I did read/review two books:  one fairly long (474 pages) and the other one pretty short at 240 pages.

I did a major overhaul of my closet, removing the jelly cupboard so more clothes can fit in the space…and changing up my entry way to accommodate the “recycled” furnishings.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The closet is not yet finished.  I ordered a curtain and a rod, coming on Tuesday.  Meanwhile, here is what it looked like this morning when I had coffee at the table, speculating on what to do next.

Now…let us take a closer look at my week…

LAST WEEK ON THE BLOGS:

Tuesday Excerpts:  “Stranger in the Lake”

Tuesday Potpourri:  A Bookish Day…

Hump Day Books…

Bookish Friday:  “Swan Song:  An Odyssey”

Coffee Chat:  Sidetracked…

Review:  Pretty Things, by Janelle BrownReview:  Swan Song, by Lisa Alther

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INCOMING BOOKS:

Empty physical mailbox!  I did download three e-books.

The Half Sister, by Sandie Jones

Always the Last To Know, by Kristan Higgins

 

A Million Little Lies, by Bette Lee Crosby

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CURRENTLY READING:

You Can’t Catch Me, by Catherine McKenzie

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That was my week.  What did yours look like?  As I think about the meals I’ve enjoyed from the past, here is one from Early Pandemic times when they served something delicious:  Turkey, stuffing, and pie.

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REVIEW: PRETTY THINGS, BY JANELLE BROWN

 

Nina once bought into the idea that her fancy liberal arts degree would lead to a fulfilling career. When that dream crashed, she turned to stealing from rich kids in L.A. alongside her wily Irish boyfriend, Lachlan. Nina learned from the best: Her mother was the original con artist, hustling to give her daughter a decent childhood despite their wayward life. But when her mom gets sick, Nina puts everything on the line to help her, even if it means running her most audacious, dangerous scam yet.

Vanessa is a privileged young heiress who wanted to make her mark in the world. Instead she becomes an Instagram influencer—traveling the globe, receiving free clothes and products, and posing for pictures in exotic locales. But behind the covetable façade is a life marked by tragedy. After a broken engagement, Vanessa retreats to her family’s sprawling mountain estate, Stonehaven: a mansion of dark secrets not just from Vanessa’s past, but from that of a lost and troubled girl named Nina.

Nina’s, Vanessa’s, and Lachlan’s paths collide here, on the cold shores of Lake Tahoe, where their intertwined lives give way to a winter of aspiration and desire, duplicity and revenge.

Pretty Things is a story about dreams, identity, and the fears that drive our journey. How Vanessa and Nina originally connect is at the heart of the story. Nina was a young girl exploring love and searching for her place in the world and struggling to separate from her con artist mom. That girl is tossed aside by the Leibling family, which fuels her rage and her resentments.

Vanessa, feeling unloved unless she is the star of her own dream world, creates fantasies and then believes they are her reality. But disappointments, loss, and rage lead her to seek revenge against Nina.

Nina and Vanessa’s stories are told in alternate sections, and as we begin to really know them, we think we have a handle on what they will do next. But there are just enough twists that we are not sure if we are being conned, or if we might trust the picture they are painting for us.

Throughout the journey, I felt empathy for each of them at different times, but never lost track of the damages at the heart of them. A core of vulnerability, mixed with the hardness created by time and numerous life injuries, made them intriguing…and potentially dangerous. Could either woman redeem herself? I kept reading, hoping to find out. 4.5 stars.

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COFFEE CHAT: SIDETRACKED…

Good morning!  Let’s gather around with our caffeinated beverages to chat about our weeks, our books, and our perspectives.  Join our host at Bookishly Boisterous to see what others are sharing.

My reading week has been slow.  Instead, I am doing my usual rearranging of my space, and this time, it is a little more drastic.  When I moved in here, I turned the closet into a combination closet/shelf area.  But my clothes outgrew the space, which led to moving the little cupboard out and into the entry way.  Of course, everything else had to reshuffle, too.

  • Here is my new look in the entry way, with the jelly cupboard relocated and standing in for the hall tree:

  • And the hall tree is opposite the new cupboard placement:

  • My closet is now dedicated to clothes…Let’s take a look at how it is progressing.  I will add a curtain and rod to cover the opening:

  • As I mentioned, my reading has been slow.  I am enjoying Pretty Things, by Janelle Brown, and hope to finish it today…or tomorrow.
  • Then I plan to start a new book tonight…Swan Song:  An Odyssey, by Lisa Alther, an author whose books I began reading in the 1980s.  And then didn’t see anything from her again until recently.

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What has your Thursday brought?  What is coming up next?

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WEEKLY UPDATES: A GREAT WEEK FOR READING & BLOGGING…

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.

 

Another great week for reading!  Four books, read and reviewed, each as great as the last one.  Blog posts seemed to grow on their own, ending up with seven of them.  Viewing movies and shows on Hulu, Prime, and Netflix are keeping me happy when I’m not reading…and Marcella, Season 3 on Netflix, starts on Sunday.

The alternating days in the dining room are working out better than when we went every day.  I am liking a slow movement back to whatever the “new normal” will be.

As I write this post, I keep noticing the message in the sidebar that says “the Block Editor is ready when you are.”  I am taking that to mean it is optional.  I definitely don’t want to use it!

Let’s take a closer look at my week…and maybe you would like to be caffeinated, so here goes:

LAST WEEK ON THE BLOGS:

Tuesday Excerpts:  “Remain Silent”

Tuesday Potpourri:  Books & Moments…

Hump Day Potpourri:  Reinventing My Space…

Hump Day Reading…

Another Book from the Backlog…

Bookish Friday:  “You Can’t Catch Me”

Coffee Chat:  Reading, Purging, & Living in the Moment

Review:  The Flatshare, by Beth O’LearyReview:  This Is How I Lied, by Heather GudenkaufReview: The Closer You Get, by Mary TorjussenReview:  A Week at the Shore, by Barbara Delinsky

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INCOMING BOOKS:

One book came in my physical mailbox…and I downloaded 3 e-books:

This Is Big, by Marisa Meltzer

You Can’t Catch Me, by Catherine McKenzie

Stranger in the Lake, by Kimberly Belle

Swan Song, by Lisa Alther

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CURRENTLY READING:  Pretty Things, by Janelle Brown

Two wildly different women—one a grifter, the other an heiress—are brought together by the scam of a lifetime in a page-turner from the New York Times bestselling author of Watch Me Disappear.

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That was my week. What did yours look like?   Since we no longer get to go out to restaurants, I scroll through photos of my favorites from previously normal times.  Here I was enjoying lunch with my granddaughter Fiona.

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COFFEE CHAT: READING, PURGING, & LIVING IN THE MOMENT…

Good morning!  Let’s gather around with our caffeinated beverages to chat about our weeks, our books, and our perspectives.  Join our host at Bookishly Boisterous to see what others are sharing.

I am a day late for my coffee chat, mostly because I have been reading. And rearranging stuff.  Loving my books this week!  Also, living in small spaces changes up how I do things.  Like clearing out drawers and shelves sooner rather than later because there isn’t room for everything!  I acquired more bins, and while they take up their own space, they can be stacked nicely, like these wicker ones under the bathroom sink.

  • My nightstand drawer was full of STUFF, so I spent some time this morning going through things…and yes, tossing some things out!  Do I really still need those brochures the doctors gave me for my surgery, done last November?
  • Of course, there is always the possibility that I might toss something that I will need later.  But fortunately, most things can be retrieved online.
  • I have also been organizing my photo files on my laptop…and what a task that has turned out to be!  Do I really need to save every photo of food and drinks?  LOL.
  • So far, I’ve read and loved two books this week, and I’m almost finished with the third, which is sooo good!  The Closer You Get, by Mary Torjussen.
  • I reviewed The Flatshare, by Beth O’Leary; and This Is How I Lied, by Heather Gudenkauf.  Loved them both!
  • I am also playing around with Bitmoji and creating new Bitmoji Me enjoying things, like wine.
  • I miss the purple in my hair, but salons are a thing of the past nowadays.  Who knows how long it will be for future salon visits?  And have you seen my nails lately?  LOL.
  • I am enjoying the alternating days in the dining room, and loving the space between tables…and realize that the Old Dining Room was a bit overcrowded and sometimes conflict-ridden.  Now we are peaceful and happy to be there.
  • Today is a day for meals in the apartment, with our food brought on trays; I enjoy those days, too.  Not having to go anywhere.  I will also order some groceries from Instacart, so I can have goodies for the weekend.  And food to supplement the still not-so-great meals they serve here.  Sigh.  One thing about going to the dining room, however; we can ask for substitute items there!

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So…my plan for the weekend and the week ahead:  be more in the moment; stop complaining so much about things I cannot change; and enjoy my books!  What are your weekend plans?

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REVIEW: THE FLATSHARE, BY BETH O’LEARY

Tiffy and Leon share an apartment. Tiffy and Leon have never met.

After a bad breakup, Tiffy Moore needs a place to live. Fast. And cheap. But the apartments in her budget have her wondering if astonishingly colored mold on the walls counts as art.

Desperation makes her open minded, so she answers an ad for a flatshare. Leon, a night shift worker, will take the apartment during the day, and Tiffy can have it nights and weekends. He’ll only ever be there when she’s at the office. In fact, they’ll never even have to meet.

Tiffy and Leon start writing each other notes – first about what day is garbage day, and politely establishing what leftovers are up for grabs, and the evergreen question of whether the toilet seat should stay up or down. Even though they are opposites, they soon become friends. And then maybe more.

But falling in love with your roommate is probably a terrible idea…especially if you’ve never met.

 

The Flatshare was an adorable and delightful journey that takes two strangers that start off sharing a flat in their “off hours” to the ordinary notes that turn cute. Like a “meet cute” without actually seeing each other.

They each discover that the connection that is slowly building through the shared post-it notes begins to feel like a relationship. Especially when their friends begin pushing for them to take the next step: to actually meet.

How the meeting happens turns into a kind of on-off effort that is another part of the slow-build journey. There is much to sort out, beginning with how to get past the baggage of their past relationships.

One might conclude that this is just a predictable romantic story, but the quirky and unusual elements turned it into so much more. I liked the way we could see the characters through their notes and their internal monologues…and then watch their missteps along the way until finally, we had a satisfactory ending. 5 stars.

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WEEKLY UPDATES: A GREAT WEEK!

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 I was determined to dust off some older books from my Kindle, and I did it!  Of the four, yes FOUR, books I read and reviewed, three of them were from my backlog.  And they were all so good!

Here in the residence, we are now eating in the dining room on alternate days, at scheduled times and applying social distancing.  I’m liking the change.  I feel a sense of normalcy returning, very slowly, and I am trying to feel hope again.

My movies and shows online continue, with some of them oldies.  The comfort viewing has helped me feel peaceful.

My ongoing sprucing up the space has led to more purchases of books and items to make me feel at home.  I have added new storage bins and changed the look of my bookshelves, with books and photos arranged in a way that I had them in my previous home.

I am writing this post in the late afternoon, so instead of suggesting we grab some caffeine, let’s reach for a preferred beverage:  perhaps even wine?

 

LAST WEEK ON THE BLOGS:

Goodbye to May!

Tuesday Excerpts:  “A Week at the Shore”

Tuesday Potpourri:  Bookish Tuesday

Hump Day Books…

Adding Another Backlog Book to My Device…

Coffee Chat:  Hanging in There…

Bookish Friday:  “Watch Me Disappear”

Review:  The Dilemma, by B.A. Paris – NG-6/30/20Review:  After Anna, by Alex LakeReview:  A Piece of the World, by Christina Baker KlineReview:  Watch Me Disappear, by Janelle Brown

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INCOMING BOOKS:

Empty physical mailbox…but I downloaded SIX e-books

Girls of Summer, by Nancy Thayer

Brave Girl, Quiet Girl, by Catherine Ryan Hyde

The Summer Deal, by Jill Shalvis

The Guest List, by Lucy Foley

Remain Silent (A Manon Bradshaw Novel), by Susie Steiner

Finding Mrs. Ford, by Deborah Goodrich Royce

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CURRENTLY READING:  The Flatshare, by Beth O’Leary

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That was my week.  What did yours look like?  Even though we are still on lockdown, I am feeling upbeat.  Getting out to the dining room every other day is surprisingly delightful.  And if the food is not good, I can ask them to prepare something else!  I have no delicious foods to spotlight, but I am thinking back on the last time I got together with my family!

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