WEEKLY UPDATES: MY ONGOING JOURNEY…

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 busy week has flown by, with numerous appointments…and great books.  I read and reviewed three books, all of them NetGalley ARCs being released on August 6, and loved them all.  Four blog posts almost brought me to my previous level of connecting with other bloggers.  Now I am in a countdown to my surgery, tentatively scheduled for July 22…but first I have to pass a couple of additional tests.

Meanwhile, my granddaughter has been helping with my interiors…and enjoying lunches, too.  Here is one of my favorite photos of her at lunch at one of our special places, California Pizza Kitchen:

Back at my little apartment, she hung the rest of my photos.  Here’s a favorite version of my entry way.  Note the Elvis handbag on the hall tree.  We emptied documents out of it in our shredding exercise, and the photos above the table were snapped by my eldest son when he was living in Ireland:

Now…let’s take a peek at my blogging while sipping an additional cup of coffee:

LAST WEEK ON THE BLOGS:

Tuesday Excerpts:  “Dear Wife”

Coffee Chat:  Finishing Touches and Engaging Books…

Bookish Friday:  “The Escape Room”

Review:  The Perfect Wife, by J P DelaneyReview:  Keeping Lucy, by T. GreenwoodReview:  The Escape Room, by Megan Goldin

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INCOMING BOOKS:

Empty mailbox…but I downloaded one e-book.

The Bookish Life of Nina Hill, by Abbi Waxman

The author of Other People’s Houses and The Garden of Small Beginnings delivers a quirky and charming novel chronicling the life of confirmed introvert Nina Hill as she does her best to fly under everyone’s radar.
 
Meet Nina Hill: A young woman supremely confident in her own…shell.

I love Waxman’s books…and can’t wait to meet this wonderful character.

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My next ARC is Because You’re Mine, by Rea Frey (Release Date – 8/6)

An “insidious, suspenseful tale” (J.T. Ellison) with a “shocker of an ending you won’t see coming” (Michele Campbell), Because You’re Mine by Rea Frey, the author who “brings to mind Jodi Picoult” (Booklist) and “will appeal to readers of Greer Hendricks and Sarah Pekkanen” (Sally Hepworth) is a novel about how the truth will set you free.

But it’s the lies that keep you safe.

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That was my week.  What did yours look like?  Last night I enjoyed Tiramisu.  Delicious!

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WEEKLY UPDATES: BOOKS, MOVIES, & INTERIORS…

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.

 

I launched the week with a wonderfully suspenseful and engaging book…and then was sidetracked for a few days with home interior stuff. I had bought some new bedding from Amazon, so I spent time redoing my bedroom.  I love recreating my space.  Here is the finished look at  Hump Day Potpourri.  Then I did some cleaning of the house, room by room, in between reading my next book, which I finally finished late last night.

Movies:  I watched Second Act on Prime, starring Jennifer Lopez.  A nice distraction.  Then I began The Act, a new show on Hulu.  More episodes come each Wednesday.  As always, I loved viewing another episode of The Good Fight.

I had another styling session with my daughter, followed by a nice lunch of Fish ‘n’ Chips with margaritas.  Yes, plural.  I didn’t photograph the lunch.  We were enjoying our chat and our laughs.  Later, you’ll see more seafood I savored this week.

Meanwhile…let’s grab another cup of coffee and check out more details of the week.

LAST WEEK ON THE BLOGS:

Tuesday Excerpts:  “As You Wish”

Let’s Share Our Bookish Delights…

Hump Day Potpourri:  Books, Interiors, Etc.

Coffee Chat:  Interiors, Books, Etc…

Bookish Friday:  “All the Wrong Places”

Review:  I Invited Her In, by Adele ParksReview:  The Ash Family, by Molly Dektar – (NG-4/9)

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INCOMING BOOKS: (Titles/Covers Linked to Amazon)

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

The Night Visitors, by Carol Goodman

The Library of Lost & Found, by Phaedra Patrick

The Perfect Girlfriend, by Karen Hamilton

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WHAT’S NEXT?

Currently Reading:  Back Stabbers, by Julie Mulhern (Book 8 in the Country Club Murders)

Then I plan to flip through the pages of my bookish notebook…and follow my whims.

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That was my week.  What did yours look like?  As promised (above), here is another seafood meal I enjoyed this week:  a Salmon Citrus Salad, with my ubiquitous margarita.

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MY INTERIOR WORLD: BOOKS, DOLLS, ETC.

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My recent posts here have focused on the world outside my “interiors”:  vacations, family things, etc.

Lately, my book buying has increased, and not only have I acquired a stupendous number of e-books, but my print stack is growing.  The stack (above) includes some recent print book purchases.

Check out my Purchased Bookshelves for 2016:

Most of these are e-books, but some of the books you see above are also included.  I’ve bought the following number of books so far this year, and listed in italics are the numbers I’ve read and reviewed:

January – 7 (Read 5 so far)

February – 6 (Read 5)

March – 12 (Read 8)

April – 12 (Read 6)

May – 15 (Read 5)

June – 12 (Read 4)

July – 10 (Read 4)

August – 15 (Read 1)

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The Read the Books You Buy Challenge is helping me clear some books off my shelves, but I’m obviously buying more books than I read each month. (53 read so far, which includes books purchased from June 2015 on).

Of course there are review books, which are reflected on another page.  I’ve been keeping abreast of those.

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I haven’t done any purging lately, but I have been rearranging some things on my bedroom shelves.  See below, with the Changing of the Guard (Dolls).  I switched the dolls between the two shelves below, for my quirky reasons:

 

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The hippie dolls in the top photo were two of my earliest doll purchases.  The collection grew from there, but now my interiors showcase only some of my dolls.  The rest are residing in bins in the garage.  The Doll Graveyard, if you will.

 

 

garage organization 3

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What are your bookshelves like these days?  Do your interiors reflect your passion for books?

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COFFEE MORNING: PURGING & REARRANGING

May 24 - more doll purges

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Good morning!  Last year, I did a number of book purges.  You may recall that I once had two overstuffed bookshelves in this corner….along with three shelves in other parts of the room.  And then, even after the books went off to the donation bins, I still had a few dolls. (Below), note that several dolls cover the top of the shelf.  In the photo above, I have removed (and rearranged) a few.

 

 

bedroom bookshelf -f eb-BEFORE

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In this photo, (below), note that dolls crouch along the top of the shelf—out of sight, there is another large doll that matches the one on the right end—Plus, there are a few little kitschy items….

 

 

bedroom in feb-BEFORE

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Now the shelf has moved to a new location by the bed (to make room for my new Netflix viewing table), and some dolls have gone missing….but my favorites remain, the “hippie dolls,” along with the little old lady atop the teacup, which once lived in my office….

 

 

May 24 - after some doll purges

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Clearing and purging and rearranging are ongoing activities…and they show how much my interiors are a work-in-progress.

Earlier in the week, I cleaned up the patio so I could enjoy some fun in the coolness of the morning…Here is today’s Coffee Morning with a Book....two versions:

 

 

may 27 patio reading with coffee

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And a close-up:

 

 

cropped coffee morning - may 27

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Just to bring a little of the exterior world in today, here’s my great-niece America, plugged in to one of her devices.  She will be eight on September 11.  Yes, born on 9/11/08.

 

 

America - Plugged in

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Last weekend, my youngest grandson Noah, age 13, enjoyed some time in the mountains (China Peak) with his mom and her fiance:

 

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So…from my interiors to the outside world, have a wonderful holiday weekend!  I plan to binge-watch Season II of Bloodline...and start reading the book pictured above, I Almost Forgot About You, by Terry McMillan.

 

 

 

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What does your interior world look like today?  Your exterior world?  Whatever you do, enjoy!  And be safe.  This post is linked to West Metro Mommy Reads, for Saturday Snapshots.

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WEEKEND MOMENTS: NETFLIX BINGEING, MOTHER’S DAY, & LOVE….

May 7 breakfast in bed with Netflix

Some of you may have seen my preparations for my Day in the Life:  In the Bedroom. (Interior World Shake-Ups…When Will I Stop?)

My day began early.  Everything was ready, so I first brought in the laptop (Louisa May), and set her up.  I hooked up the TV and laptop, changed the input on the TV, and voila!  It’s all set.

Next came the breakfast tray.  You can’t really enjoy Breakfast in Bed with Netlix & Amazon Videos…without it.

First I finished watching Happy Valley, another binge-worthy show.

 

 

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Next:  Watched the rest of The Newsroom on Amazon Video:

 

 

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Finally…Grace & Frankie.  I watched all of Season II!

 

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During this long process, which didn’t seem long at all, I enjoyed food, coffee, and then a mimosa….

 

may 7 bedroom - mimosa, etc.

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I took a little break between shows to go online and visit some blogs.  Laptop came over to the bed….

 

laptop on bed - may 7

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So….after lolling about in bed all day, one would think I would feel rested…but I was kind of tired.  I read a little from the book I’ve been savoring all weekend:  What We Find, by Robyn Carr.

 

 

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Guess what’s coming tomorrow?  Clouds in My Coffee, the third book in the Country Club Murders trilogy (series?).  I can’t wait to download it!

 

 

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So…my weekend continued, with Mother’s Day brunch up in the mountains, by the lake.  Here are my lovely daughter and grandson, with the boats as a backdrop:

 

Heather & Noah - Mother's Day Brunch - Bass Lake

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One of the gifts she gave me was this hand-carved art piece, created by one of her friends:

 

 

Love Sign Close-up

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Here is how it looks on my Love Wall in the office.  It is surrounded by baby pictures of my kids…and one of me back in the day:

 

 

Love Wall - 2

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Finally…some lovely lilies:

 

Mother's Day Lilies

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These were my Weekend Interior Moments.  I hope you had a wonderful weekend, too.  Do you enjoy setting up your interiors for such moments?

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INTERIOR WORLD SHAKE-UPS…WHEN WILL I STOP?

may 4 - sheets

Once I start making changes in my interiors, I can’t seem to stop!

Just two days ago, I started shaking things up and wrote about it in Thoughts from the Interior:  Favorite Places.

Yesterday I made a few more changes…I bought new sheets, for one thing (above); and then I brought in a small round table from the living room…for the laptop (below).

 

 

may 4 bedroom changes

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When you move one thing, something else must fill the void…so here is what happened in the living room after the round table changed locations.  The little drop leaf table moved from its former location next to the love seat….

 

may 5 living room changes

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What took its place?  The faceless doll….

 

may 5, view from dining room

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Here’s the laptop in its home away from home…in other words, when I’m watching Netflix in my bedroom:

 

may 5 laptop space

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Am I done?  What do you think?  Am I the only one who can’t seem to stop when I’m making “just a few changes”?

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FROM THE INTERIOR: A CONSTANT STRUGGLE – TO PURGE OR NOT TO PURGE

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It has been a productive month.  From the purging I was doing in the garage and on my bookshelves, to the changes to my interiors.

The little table/chest you see above, with the large and colorful bowl, is an entry way of sorts.  Yes, I have an official entry way, with the hall tree, etc., at the front door. (Below).

 

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But this is my entry way, since I enter my home through the kitchen door, from the garage.  Here I deposit my keys…and as you can tell, perhaps, there are other assorted things, like a watch and some rings, etc.  Just in case I want to pick up any of them when I leave the house.

 

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The little table is next to my Baker’s Rack, where I have numerous collections, including the books I have written (top shelf).

There is also a box behind the candle on the table, with a memo pad…where I can create a to-do list.  All of this is geared toward organizing my life.  After the purge, and before further purging.  Yes, there will be more.

One of my changes recently is tossing the ARCs almost as soon as I finish them.  Unless, for some reason, I hang onto them, just in case I want a reread.  Some of them have been that good.

But silly me…I know that rereading is not likely.  Why?  Too many books still unread, that’s why.

My daughter is reorganizing her space, too, having moved into the home previously occupied by my youngest son.  She is hauling stuff away from the garage.  I might take advantage of her trailer and haul some things away too.

We have to be ruthless, sometimes, and definitely not sentimental, when purging.  Can I do it?  Or will I procrastinate, telling myself that it is not time to toss out this or that?

Meanwhile, I keep adding review books to my stacks, knowing that they will complicate my efforts.  But as long as I stick to my plan to toss out whatever I can, perhaps we will be okay.

 

New books coming into my house this week:  The Nightingale, by Kristin Hannah.

 

 

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Another Night, Another Day, by Sarah Rayner

 

 

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Even as I plan for eliminating some of my books from my interiors, I luxuriate in the comfort of having them close by.  And being surrounded by books will always be something I enjoy….until some of them must go away.

Do you have plans for your books when you add them to your home?  Do they stay on your shelves a while?  Or are they gone almost as quickly as they come?

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HUMP DAY THOUGHTS: HOW DO YOU ORGANIZE YOUR BOOKISH WORLD?

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Side View
Side View

 

 

As I contemplate my interior world, the books that languish unread atop my bookcase (above – 18 total!) and my coffee table trunk (below) are a constant reminder of things to do.  The coffee table books include review books on the right (five)…and on the left are “up next” reads (six)…after the review books.  Of course, the “up next” books could change if the mood strikes, and I could go directly to the collection atop the bookcase, where some very tempting titles reside.

 

 

Review books on the right
Review books on the right

 

In an effort to organize my interiors more fully, I actually purged my stacks of books, sweeping away those tomes that I had not received for review; and books that, for whatever reason, I would never read.  I do have to be realistic!

Just as I organized those e-books a while ago, I knew it was time to attack the physical ones.  Yes, alas, attack.  Why was I holding onto books that had no chance of being read?  So off they went to the box in the garage.  They will find new homes when the next library collection drive hits this neighborhood.

All of this is a reminder that, in my obsession to acquire books, I need to think.  Pause.  Contemplate and weigh what I truly love in a book against the urge to simply have a book others have loved. 

Do you struggle with your impulse buying of books?  Does your desire to have a lovely looking tome mean that you will someday have to purge it from your shelves and admit that you made a wrong choice…for you?

Sometimes I simply add those books that are “not for me” to another shelf, my book nook, where I offer them up in the occasional giveaway.  Those stacks also include books I have read and reviewed.  But those books do not fly out fast enough.  They end up looking like this:

 

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To be fair, only the top two rows of books on this shelf (on the left) are the giveaways.  Below are my regular shelves of books I have read, and on the right side are my autographed books.  Not as dire as it might seem at first glance.

 

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So now I’m off to read some more of those books…sitting in the space (above), while the last cool breeze of morning filters through the open patio door.

I’m reading this book that has already engaged me:  The Stories We Tell, by Patti Callahan Henry.

 

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How is your Hump Day unfolding?  Great books?  Plans?  And how do you organize your bookish world?

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