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.

A birthday week can be such fun.  Amazon packages arriving almost daily; birthday cards showing up; and I am enjoying birthday lunches.  I’m feeling spoiled!

I’ve only read and reviewed two books but I have written seven blog posts.  I’m halfway finished with my third book.

Prime movies and new DVDs have kept me busy in the evenings.

In two more weeks, I go to Oakland for my surgery.  The anxiety is descending, and I’m trying not to think about it.  I’ve realized that the anticipation of an event is often the worst part, so I must remind myself that I can do this!

Let’s take a closer look at my week…and if you like, grab a cup of virtual coffee.



Sunday Sparks:  Family Connections in the Past…

Sunday Photos Spark Memories…

Tuesday Excerpts:  “If You Only Knew”

Tuesday Potpourri:  Another Day of Book Buying…

Curling up on a Hump Day…

Coffee Chat:  Birthday Bounty, Etc.

Bookish Friday:  “The Poison Garden”

Review:  Good Girl, Bad Girl, by Michael RobothamReview:  Queen Meryl, by Erin Carlson


Four books came in my mailbox!  Then I downloaded one e-book.

The Book of Gutsy Women, by Hillary Rodham Clinton and Chelsea Clinton

The Family, by Louise Jensen

All the Flowers in Paris, by Sarah Jio

Touched by the Sun, by Carly Simon



The Poison Garden, by A. J. Banner


Currently Reading:  Just After Midnight, by Catherine Ryan Hyde; a book that has been on my Kindle since December 2018.


That was my week.  What did yours look like?  I had some cake and ice cream after one of my dinners this 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.


Another event-filled week just flew by, starting off with New Year’s Eve on Monday, with reading, movies, etc.  The biggest moments were during First Book of the Year, which featured my chosen book.  I read all day on January 1 and finished it!  You’ll see my review listed below.  After the momentum of my first (and only two) books read this week, everything kind of fizzled.  I got through 117 pages of Sadie, which started out okay…and then I kept setting it down, distracted, turning to other things…until I finally gave up.  I hate to DNF books, but one of the rules I make for myself these days is to move on when necessary.  So next I turned to an ARC, which has kept my interest.

I’ve enjoyed watching old movies (not 1930s-40s OLD, but 1980s, et. al., like When Harry Met Sally).  That’s a movie that needs to be viewed on New Year’s.  I think I know the dialogue by now.  I also enjoyed re-watching Shadowlands, since I just downloaded a book with the characters in it.  And last night, I started watching Evening, with Vanessa Redgrave, Toni Collette, Natasha Richardson, Patrick Wilson, etc.  I occasionally do this:  watch for a while, stop the DVR, and return to the movie later.  I’ve seen it a few times, so I don’t lose anything in this process.

Today is my youngest grandson’s 16th birthday.  Where did the time go?  I have five twenty-something grandchildren who are also very busy with their own lives, and only one of them lives in this city.  But today I’ll be picking this teenager up at my neighborhood mall where he is hanging out with friends…and will take him to his home where we plan to have a celebratory dinner.  Here he was, on his first birthday, when his family lived next door to me in my guesthouse in the foothills:


Now…let’s grab some more coffee and take a closer look at the week.  Note that my Christmas decorations are still up…but I think they’re coming down today.


Monthly Wrap-Up at Year’s End…

First Book of 2019:  Continuing a Tradition…

Tuesday Excerpts:  “Our Little Lies”

Hump Day Reading…The First of 2019

Coffee Chat:  Launching 2019…

Bookish Friday:  “Those Other Women”

Curling up to Read…Seeking Normalcy!

Saturday Potpourri:  Out with the Holidays…

Review:  You Don’t Own Me (e-book), by Mary Higgins Clark/Alafair Burke – First Book of the Year!                                                                               Review:  Sophie Last Seen (e-book), by Marlene Adelstein – Author Review Book


INCOMING BOOKS:  (Titles/Covers Linked to Amazon)

One purchased book came in my physical mailbox…and I downloaded another book.

Wallis in Love, by Andrew Morton


Becoming Mrs. Lewis (e-book), by Patti Callahan



My plans for the week will be loose…I am trying that on for size.  I am currently reading (and loving so far) Forget You Know Me (e-book), by Jessica Strawser – a NetGalley ARC.  A “twisty, emotionally complex, powder keg of a tale” (bestselling author Emily Carpenter) about the wounds of people who’ve grown apart. Best, friends, separated by miles. Spouses, hardened by neglect. A mother, isolated by pain.



So…that was my week.  What did yours look like?  I am hoping for a good week.  I plan to bring my home back to normalcy, Christmas decorations binned in the garage.  Reading, movies, and special foods that comfort me will be a priority.  Here’s what I had on New Year’s Day.



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.


A lovely autumn week brought serene days, with birthday celebrations, blogging, and some reading.  I only read and reviewed two books, but they were both wonderful.  I wrote six blog posts, so I made up for the previous week when I had no laptop. Today I am pondering what I should do…probably more reading, but I’ve also been captivated by a series I loved a few years ago, now on Amazon Prime:  Brothers & Sisters, with Sally Field as the matriarch.  I’m on Season II.

I haven’t gone to the theater lately.  I’m still waiting for movies that will draw me there, as I no longer go for just any movie. 

So…let’s grab some coffee and chat about the details of the past week:


Rainy Day Excerpts:  “Under My Skin”

Tuesday Potpourri:  Books, Chaos, & Recovery

A Week of Engaging Books…

Coffee Chat:  A Week To Celebrate…

Thursday Potpourri:  Celebrating Autumn & Birthdays…

Bookish Friday:  “The Neighbors”

Review:  In Pieces, by Sally FieldReview:  Day of the Dead (e-book, Freda Klein Novel), by Nicci French


INCOMING BOOKS: (Titles/Covers Linked to Amazon)

Empty physical mailbox!  I did receive a NetGalley review ARC, and then I downloaded two purchased e-books.

Daisy Jones & the Six (e-book), by Taylor Jenkins Reid (NG-3/5/19)

Purchased Downloads:

The Three Beths (e-book), by Jeff Abbott

Gone So Long (e-book), by Andre Dubus III



The Neighbors (e-book), by Hannah Mary McKinnon

Open Your Eyes, by Paula Daly


That was my week.  What did yours look like?  I celebrated with two birthday lunches…here’s one of them, with two of my “daughters” (bio daughter on the left, and honorary on the right):  I had Quiche.




Good morning!  It’s just another Hump Day, but it’s a good time to have another cup of coffee and ponder bookish/family things.

Last week, as some might recall, I had a birthday.  We won’t mention the number of birthdays I’ve had, but I especially enjoyed this one, with brunches, lunches, and an Amazon gift card.  Among other things.

Here are some things I got with my gift card: the two books in the foreground, of course, and a lovely new watch. (I go through watches like the quick passage of time).



I ordered hardcovers of these two books, Home and Another Brooklyn, as I love having a few pretty books on my shelves.

Today, a friend is treating me to a belated birthday lunch at Mimi’s.





Halloween came after my birthday, of course, just as it does every year.  I loved these little step-great-grandchildren and their costumes.  They are, L to R, Bella, Lilly, and Maddix.



Their father, my step-grandson Spencer, is in this picture:




I think the kids have a “cops and robbers” theme going on.


From Halloween 2015, I found this photo of my daughter (on the right) and some friends at the local bar and grill.




Could the fact of Halloween following so closely after my birthday have been the reason I was called “punkin” as a kid?  Or could this be the reason?





And, speaking of pumpkins….




Sometimes our destiny is shaped early on…lol

Speaking of destiny, I couldn’t resist sharing this photo of my great-niece, Margaret, showing us her early desire to read whatever she can get her hands on:




So…off to get ready for my lunch….and I’ll be taking my current read with me, via Pippa.

In Twenty Years, by Allison Winn Scotch, is a story of friendships gone awry.





What are you pondering on this Hump Day morning?  Reading something delightful?

I am linking up to West Metro Mommy Reads for Saturday Snapshot.






Mexican flag

The flag flying against the blue of the sky was a beacon for those on the cruise last week.

My daughter’s birthday was Saturday, the thirteenth, and two days before, she and a group of friends headed to Ensenada on a cruise ship.

Today I’m sharing some of the photos.  Below, my daughter Heather and her friend Jessica are heading down to Long Beach to catch the boat.  These two have been friends since they were teenagers, and I enjoyed watching them both grow through those challenging years.



Heather & Jessica - Cruise, Day 1


The group of them in a formal shot, before all the heavy partying starts….


A Friends Photo


Catching some rays….


Cruise - Sunbathing


Hi, Kitty Kat!


Heather  Tiger



I think the party has started….



Heather & friends - cruise




On dry land for a bit….



Mexican beer




A formal shot of the engaged couple, Heather and David….



A birthdayengagement portrait



An interesting view….


Another view




And here’s another….



Cruise - Water View



This post is linked to West Metro Mommy Reads, for Saturday Snapshots.



1977 - Rain & Heather

Happy birthday to my baby girl, Heather!  Above, she is ten months old, and we were enjoying a get-away along the Central Coast.  That shot was taken in Solvang.


Below, she is age three….Her hair looks like that because I had braided it, and then brushed it out, trying for a flower child style…probably not her best look.




heather at three


Fast-forward through the years:  her oldest brother, Craig, a photographer, captured her against this wall in a grungy look.  She was fifteen, and really hates that hairstyle now.





Several years later, she went to Pismo Beach to get married, and her two-year-old, Noah, showed off his blond curls for the occasion….



heather and noah at Pismo Beach


There have been many occasions with photos of Heather, but here’s the last one I took, earlier this week, when we celebrated her birthday early.  Now she is on a cruise, with fiance and friends, celebrating 40 years!



Heather's birthday lunch - 2016


She was born on Friday the 13th, in August 1976.  Many happy returns!


This post is linked to West Metro Mommy Reads.