Monday, April 29, 2013

Mailbox Monday April 29

Mailbox Monday is a gathering place for readers to share the books that came into their house last week(s) and explore great book blogs. Mailbox Monday was created by Marcia at Hooked by A Book (formerly The Printed Page) and is on tour for the month of April, and hosted by Mari at Mari Reads. 
  Warning: Mailbox Monday can lead to envy, toppling TBR piles and humongous wish lists.

My F2F book club has received ARC's of Barbara Delinsky new book, Sweet Salt Air. One of our members entered a contest on We are so excited to be reading this for our May selection. 

Enclosed with each book was the following little blurb  Charlotte and Nicole were once the best of friends, spending summers together in Nicole's family island house, but they have since grown apart. A successful travel writer, Charlotte lives on the road, while Nicole, a food blogger, lives in Philadelphia with her surgeon-husband, Julian. When Nicole returns to the island house in order to write a book about island food, she invites her old friend Charlotte for both sentimental and practical reasons. Outgoing and passionate, Charlotte has a gift for talking to people and making friends, and Nicole would like her help interviewing locals for her book. Missing a genuine connection, Charlotte agrees, But what both women don't know is that they are each holding a secret that may change their relationship forever. Are the bonds of friendship strong enough to weather past indiscretions and betrayals? Can love survive an honest mistake?

Comfort Food by Kate Jacobs was on the "Take ,They are Free" table at the same book club meeting.  Members share books that they have read and don't want to keep. Any that are not taken to become traveling books, are donated to our local library. This is a hardcover and one that has been on my TBR list for awhile. 

So I will stay busy and stay happy,

Sunday, April 28, 2013

The Mountain and the Fathers: Growing Up on the Big Dry

The Mountain and the Fathers: Growing Up on The Big DryThe Mountain and the Fathers: Growing Up on The Big Dry by Joe Wilkins
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Joe Wilkins writes in beautiful prose of his life in Eastern Montana.  He tells a story in each chapter as if a certain subject Lake Water, Sky, Slow Breath or person his mother, Bruce Wheatry, Kelly Dempsey, each brought to his mind pictures and lessons learned.  Wilkins writing is almost like reading poetry. It is descriptive, poignant, sometime sad and sometimes hilarious.  Life on the Big Dry was certainly hard, but from all of it he gained a knowledge of self, family, those who treated him like family. This is a must read for all who seek to find something important in their own lives. Sometimes the smallest most mundane things are important. In the retelling of his life on the Big Dry, Joe Wilkins finds his father, finds himself.

I rated this book with 5 stars because I came away changed by Mr. Wilkins' stories.

This book fulfills What's in a Name 6:  Read a book with Up or Down in the title. This challenge is hosted by Beth at Beth Fish Reads.  You can link up to the challenge by clicking on the button in the right hand sidebar. It is also a non-fiction memoir so it is my second nonfiction read for the Non-Fiction Reading Challenge hosted by The Introverted Reader

Until Next Time
Stay Busy and Stay Happy

Saturday, April 27, 2013

A Summer in France - A Timed Book Challenge/ Ebook Challenge

Title:  The Summer of France
Author: Paulita Kincer
Published Date: 2012
Acquired:  Downloaded from Amazon
Recommend: Yes

The story captured me at the beginning with a possible work/vacation in France. Fia was a bit of a flaky character, but her motives were always in the right place. She got herself caught up in a family drama that unfolded in a mostly predictable way. I did not have the secret figured out until Fia finally figured it out. The only disappointment I felt, was the way she accepted her role as a doormat, while her family "vacationed". Also, did not like the way Fia so easily kicked her husband of 16 years to the curb. That is not the only answer when your partner is unfaithful.

Rating: 4/5 Happy Hands

This book was a download to my Kindle Fire and therefore used as part of my 2013 Ebook Challenge sponsored by Sarah at Work A Day Reads   I am a member of a group called Love of Reading on Goodreads, and the month of April there was a challenge to read 3 books with a destination in the title. This was the 2nd book I read for that challenge, the 1st being The House at Riverton, 4/5 hands and I am still reading The Mountain and the Fathers: Growing Up on the Big Dry. So far unrated, but I am leaning toward 4 hands also.

Until next time
Stay Busy and Stay Happy

Friday, April 26, 2013

A confession and more

I recently finished reading a book recommended and written by a fellow blogger and that I used to fulfill a book challenge for a group I participate in on  The author of the book,  Paulita was so kind as to respond twice to my post from last Tuesday.

I really am such unknowledgeable blogger. I can't always get links to other sites to work, I don't even know how to link a review from another site, like Amazon or Goodreads. And I feel so unworthy when it comes to writing reviews. It seems most bloggers have a degree in English, or Literature or something, I graduated HS, got married and raised a family. I have always loved to read, but writing reviews intimidates me. I could sure use some pointers, if any of you have any.

I love reading all your blogs. I get to see all the different books that are out there. I get to feel a little like we are friends. I have been exposed to books I never would have picked up on my own. So, for all this I thank you.

When I started this blog, I had recently retired from work, and wanted to be able to share projects I completed, books I read, and some parts of my life. My life is in a constant flux, so sometimes I am away from my blog for days or even weeks at a time. Please know that even though there are days that I cannot share what is happening in my life, I still read and sometimes even comment. I try to stay involved in several MEMEs. My favorites are "What's in a Name 6", "First Chapter, First Paragraph Intro Tuesday", "Mailbox Monday"," Wondrous Words Wednesday" and "Snapshot Saturday".

In addition to reading, I also quilt with a group of women 2 Sundays a month, I am a member of another local quilt guild, I belong to a stitching group and a stitching club (we do hand embroidery). So my mother always said busy hands are happy hands and that is why I named my blog the same. These days I am not happy, so please forgive the "rant" an know that I am working on getting back to "happy".

Until next time,
Stay Busy and Stay Happy,

Tuesday, April 23, 2013

First Chapter First Paragraph Into Tuesday

Every Tuesday, Diane at Bibliophile by the Sea posts the first paragraph or maybe two of her current read. Anyone can join in. Go to Diane's website for the image and share the first paragraph (or2) of the current book you are reading.

Last night, I started reading by Paulita Kincer. The first chapter and first paragraph follows:

"The quiet of the house mocked me as I rummaged through the Sunday paper looking for the travel pages. I ignored the meticulously folded "Help Wanted" section of the the newspaper and the yellow highlighter that my husband had placed on the counter to remind me that I'd been unemployed for two months and needed to find a job - soon. The ring of the kitchen phone saved me from isolation and from a job search as the thick accent of my aunt came across the crackly line inviting me to move to France. "

So, what would you do?  Would you continue?  I did, and am enjoying the story so far. Paulita is a fellow blogger and I for one will support as many of our fellow bloggers as I can, as they follow their passion of writing.

Schools had another snow day in our community yesterday. We probably had 6-8 inches on our deck when we woke up. But it melted a lot yesterday, and though there are more snow showers predicted this evening and some tomorrow, it is supposed to be 75 by Saturday. We should have sloppy roads and wet yards, but maybe just maybe Spring is around the corner.  Keep your fingers crossed!!

Until next time,
Stay Busy and Stay Happy

Monday, April 22, 2013

Mailbox Monday 4-22

Mailbox Monday is a gathering place for readers to share the books that came into their house last week(s) and explore great book blogs. Mailbox Monday was created by Marcia at Hooked by A Book (formerly The Printed Page) and is on tour for the month of April, and hosted by Mari at MariReads
 Warning: Mailbox Monday can lead to envy, toppling TBR piles and humongous wish lists.
This list if for the last couple of weeks. I have purchased only e-books.  I have added the following to my kindle.

 What Matters Most by Bette Lee Crosby and The Show by John A Heldt  were both provided by the author.   Both authors I met through Goodreads. 

   The Summer of France by Paulita Kincer was recommended by the author, a fellow blogger, to fulfill my April challenge to read 3 books with destinations in the title.

A Single Thread ( Cobbled Quilt #1)  by Marie Bostwick  was recommended by two friends that are fellow quilters.

Reviews of Brain on Fire by Susannah Cahalan caught my eye on several blogger sites.

The Thirteenth Tale by Diane Setterfield is the April suggested read for a group I participate in on Goodreads.
If You Stay ( Beautifully Broken #1) has been recommended by several other bloggers and I am a pushover for series. 
Until next time
Stay Busy and Stay Happy

Wednesday, April 17, 2013

Wondrous Words Wednesday 4-17

 Wondrous Words Wednesday is hosted by BermudaOnion each week. It's an opportunity to share new words you've encountered in your reading, or highlight words that you particularly enjoy. Visit Kathy at BermudaOnion and check out words that fellow readers have discovered. 

This week I am reading The House at Riverton by Kate Morton. It makes me think of Downton Abbey. The timeline is the same, the fact that there is dissent regarding who will be the heir. The downstairs staff and most of the characters are similar. I find myself thinking of these characters as the actors from the PBS series. 

1. primogeniture: noun

"....given that no new arrangements were made after news of Major Hartford's death, the estate will pass, in line with the ancient laws of primogeniture, to Major Hartford's eldest male child."

  a)  the state of being the firstborn of the children of the same parents
  b)  an exclusive right of inheritance belonging to the eldest son.

I was sure of the meaning of this word because of the sentence structure and usage. But I wanted to look it up anyway. I am not familiar with the word, even though I am the firstborn of the children of  the same parents. But I am not the eldest son, nor is there any inheritance to be gained!  It was of great importance in the early 1900s. Not so much any more maybe, since women have the right to vote and can now hold property and make their own fortune. 

2. panoply: noun

"Through the kitchen I went, past Mrs. Townsend's workbench covered with a panoply of sweetbreads and cakes,and up the stairs. "

Surely this meant an abundance or great many.

a : a full suit of armor
b : ceremonial attire
: something forming a protective covering
a : a magnificent or impressive array panoply
of a military funeral>
I am assuming the author used the word in the 3rd definition. This was a new word for me and I am going to try to add it to my vocabulary. I had to listen to the word spoken though, I did not guess the pronunciation correctly.

Both these definitions came from the Merriam - Webster dictionary downloaded to my computer. I really like the fact that I can "click" on the speaker icon and hear the word pronounced. 

So what are you reading this week? Have you discovered any "new to you" words? 

Until next time,

Stay Busy and Stay Happy

Saturday, April 13, 2013

April Snow - Saturday Snapshot


Saturday Snapshot is hosted by At Home With Books. To participate in the Saturday Snapshot meme post a photo that you (or a friend or family member) have taken then leave a direct link to your post in the Mister Linky (at At Home With Books). Photos can be old or new, and be of any subject as long as they are clean and appropriate for all eyes to see. How much detail you give in the caption is entirely up to you. Please don’t post random photos that you find online.

Out our Backdoor - Springtime in Wyoming!
I'm really ready for Spring. Come on sunshine and warm air.!!!

Wednesday, April 10, 2013

Wondrous Words Wednesday April 9

 Wondrous Words Wednesday is hosted by BermudaOnion each week. It's an opportunity to share new words you've encountered in your reading, or highlight words that you particularly enjoy.

The book I just finished had lots of wondrous words. Here are just a few.

Apparently the image of the little dead girl on the ancient alter had piqued someone's cultural tendencies. " A sacrificial virgin," I said. " A votary," said Cassie.  page 82
Votary : noun,
1. a person bound by a vow or promise, esp one bound to religious vows, as a monk or a nun.
2.a person devoted to a particular religion or object of worship; devout worshiper
3. a devoted or ardent supporter, as of a cause or ideal, etc.
4. a person who is devoted to any game,  study or pursuit

As the story progressed, I think the author used the 3rd definition for the word votary.

The castle grounds were golden and nostalgic in the slanting late-afternoon light. Tourists in shorts and backpacks wandered past, gawking up at the crenellations.
page 251
crenellation- noun : variation of the transitive verb crenellate:
to furnish with battlements or crenel, or squared notches.

Cassie's mood had shifted abruptly; the burst of ebullience had dissipated.... page 251
ebullience - noun:   zestful enthusiasm

....but The Squad has a deep, almost totemistic significance to him, and once he has resigned himself to back one of its members he backs him, or even her, all the way. page 388

totemistic-adj    variant of noun totemism.
1. belief in totoems and totem relationships
2. the use of totems to distinguish kin or descent groups
3. social customs based on totems

I think the author was using definition number 2. The captain regarded the Squad as family.
All these definitions are from my online dictionary. Your Dictionary quotes various dictionaries. 
I am not sure I would use any of these words in my everyday speech.  But it was fun to read them.

Until next time,
Stay Busy and Stay Happy

Tuesday, April 2, 2013

First Paragraph~First Chapter Tuesday Intros 4-2

Every Tuesday, Diane at Bibliophile by the Sea posts the first paragraph or maybe two of her current read. Anyone can join in. Go to Diane's website for the image and share the first paragraph (or2) of the current book you are reading.

"But, we're in love," my stepson said, his dark chocolate eyes burning bright with the passionate angst of a nineteen-year-old male in full-blown heat. 
"Oh, Sam," I said, trying to chose my words carefully. "You're still so young." I reached down and scratched behind my dog's soft brown ears. Scout was part Labrador, part German shepherd mix with a suspected itinerant coyote grandparent. He gazed up at me with adoring ocher eyes.
"You were nineteen when you married Jack," Sam replied. 

These are the first 3 paragraphs of the 7th in the Benni Fowler Mystery Series written by Earlene Fowler. They may not have a ton of grabbing appeal, but I have raised teenagers, and my oldest granddaughter even spoke those last words to me when I told her she was still so young and she was wanting to get married. And I have read the first 6 books in the series and I am attached to Benni, her current husband Gabe and Gabe's young son Sam. So I will continue in my quest to read all books in the series. There are 15!

So would you chose this book and read on?

My challenges for the month of April are to read 4 books with travel destinations in the title. Continue on with trying to complete "a series I have started", and to keep up with the monthly suggested reads in the 2 groups I belong to on Goodreads. Plus there is always a husband to take care of, a house to dust and a quilt to construct. Yikes!!! I had better get BUSY!!!!

Until next time, 
Stay Busy and Stay Happy


Monday, April 1, 2013

Mailbox Monday and

Don't you love this little girl in her boots and yellow raincoat?  Hope we get lots of rain in April to bring the May flowers. 

Welcome to Mailbox Monday, a meme started by Marcia and hosted by Mari at Mari Reads
 in April.  This is where we spotlight the books that came to our home in the last week. Caveat: Mailbox Monday can cause your TBR pile to increase exponentially.

I received no books in my mailbox in the last several weeks. I did pick up a library loan of In The Woods by Tana French.  It is a March read for an online group on Goodreads. I'm a bit late getting started on it, but it is really good so far.

"As dusk approaches a small Dublin suburb in the summer of 1984, mothers begin to call their children home from play. but on this warm evening, three children do not return from the dark and silent wood. When the police arrive, the find only one child, gripping a tree trunk in terror, wearing blood-filled sneakers, and unable to recall a single detail of the previous hours."
This paragraph may have stopped me from going on, but the next paragraph grabbed my interest.

"Twenty years later, the found boy, Rob Ryan, is a detective on the Dublin Murder squad and keeps his past a secret. But when a 12 year-old girl is found murdered in the same wood, he and Detective Cassie Maddox - his partner and closest friend - find themselves investigating a case chillingly similar to the previous unsolved mystery. Now, with only snippets of long-buried memories to guide him, Ryan has the chance to uncover  both the mystery of the case before him and that of his own shadowy past."

The last two weeks were busy here. Spring is just around the corner here in Wyoming, I can feel it. I started a Senior Yoga class and will go back to a Water Aerobics class.

Until next time:

Stay Busy and Stay Happy