Saturday, October 31, 2015

Cozy Mystery #7 A Corpse for Yew

A Corpse for Yew (Peggy Lee Garden Mystery, #5)A Corpse for Yew by Joyce Lavene
My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I really like these cozy mysteries. Dr Peggy Lee, is now employed by the Charlotte Police Department as a forensic botanist. She also owns and operated The Potting Shed. Business at The Potting Shed is waning a bit due to a severe drought in the area. The drought has caused nearby Lake Whitney to nearly dry up. The Shamrock Historical Society has used this unusual turn of events to their advantage, to research and dig up artifacts from the dry lake.

Unfortunately, they find a body with bright red lips. Even worse, she is one of their own, founding member Lois Mullis. Did she have a heart attack and fall into the mud, did someone kill her by feeding her poisonous berries? No one seems to have answers, but there are plenty of accusations.

View all my reviews

Saturday Snapshots 10-31-15 Not a Halloween Post! !

Melinda hosts Saturday Snapshots every week at her blog West Metro Mommy Reads. Share photos taken by you or a family member or friend, not a random picture found on line. Make sure it is suitable for all eyes then link up at Melinda's Blog.

Last week I attended a three day quilting retreat with 10 friends. We finished a lot of projects. I will share them over the next several Saturdays. There are lots of patterns out there that use border fabric and a 60 degree ruler. Below are several examples. Eileen use fall border fabric to fashion a beautiful table topper. Stunning, isn't it?

Jeanine used a cute winter themed fabric to make this table runner.  There are mittens, and stocking caps in shades of green, red, blue and gold.  Really cute.

Marva Jo made TWO Christmas themed table runners. She will donate one to the fund raiser at our local library.  I'd bid on one, wouldn't you?

 The two project below were also made by Marva.  The Christmas tree is a die cut applique piece that she appliqued around each shape and then she will put it on her long arm and quilt the background.

These are orange/gold patchwork pumpkins made into a table runner. Not sure how she will complete this one, but it will be gorgeous. Her projects always are. 

We had a great time. The rooms were wonderful, the food was top notch and the company was fun and uplifting.

I'll share more pictures next week and if you want to see some of the pictures where we "retreated", check out my post from last Saturday Snapshots.

Until next time
Stay Busy and Stay Happy

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Wondrous Words Wednesday - 10.28.15

Today I am using words from my last two Word of the Day emails from Merriam Webster. My reading has not provided me wondrous words lately. Share some wondrous words you have encountered then link up at Kathy's blog, BermudaOnion's Weblog.

delight, enjoyment

Spending time with our great grandson provides many hours of delectation

a device made of two flat pieces of wood fastened at one end so as to make a loud noise when used by an actor to strike a person
comedy stressing farce and horseplay; also : activity resembling slapstick

I knew the 2nd definition and probably deep in my brain even knew the first one. But my go to definition was slapstick as a kind of comedy. 
When I think of slapstick comedy I think of the 3 Stooges.

Until next time
Stay Busy and Stay happy

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

First Chapter First Paragraph Tuesday Intros. - First Frost

Every Tuesday Diane at Bibliophile By the Sea, hosts First Chapter First Paragraph Tuesday Intros. It is a place to share the first paragraph sometimes two from a book you are reading or thinking about reading soon. Share your First Chapter First Paragraph then link up at Bibliophile By the Sea

First Frost
Sarah Addison Allen
St Martin's Press  2014

   Bay Waverly-Hopkins raced down Pendland Street, her backpack bouncing and her black hair flying behind her like blackbirds. The neighborhood homeowners always knew when she ran by, because they suddenly felt the desire to organize their sock drawers and finally replace those burned- out lightbulbs they'd been meaning to. We need to set things in order, they all thought as Bay ran down the street every afternoon after school. But, as soon as she passed, their thoughts quickly drifted back to where they'd been before --what was for dinner, why was a husband so moody lately, could a load of laundry wait another day. 

I have been wanting to read this one since finishing Garden Spells.  I have also read The Sugar Queen by Sarah Addison Allen. I went to the library today with Mr Busy and there was this copy on the featured "top picks" shelf. I grabbed it of course.

Have you read this one? Would you continue based on the first paragraph?  Don't you love the cover?

Til next time
Stay Busy and Stay Happy

Monday, October 26, 2015

It's Monday! What Are You Reading?

Join us as we share the books we are reading and the ones we hope to get to this week. Write a post about your current reads, then link up at Book Date.

On My Kindle:

Goodreads has only this one line - "Sometimes hope for the future is found in the ashes of yesterday."

I have read other Karen Kingsbury and have enjoyed them. I am sure I will like this one too. 

On my nightstand:

Just started this one. No opinion yet. It is my F2F Book Club's current read. Check the synopsis on Goodreads here

Until next time
Stay Busy and Stay Happy

Saturday, October 24, 2015

Saturday Snapshots - A fun middle of the week respite.

Join us at Melinda's blog, West Metro Mommy Reads, where she gives us the opportunity to share photos taken by ourselves or family and friends. The only rules are: No random internet photos and all pictures must be suitable for all eyes.

I'm back from my quilting retreat. We were in beautiful Ucross, Wyoming, at The Ranch at Ucross.  For those of you familiar with the Longmire series by Craig Johnson, that is 14 miles north of Buffalo, Wyoming. I shared some pictures of the buildings last year when we quilted there. You can find them here, it was November and there was snow.

This is the view from the back deck of the dining room. It is the end of October in Wyoming and the grass is mostly green, the trees are green and gold, unheard of this late in the Fall.

 My friend Donna was looking for a cowboy hat. She and her husband are attending The National Finals Rodeo in Las Vegas in December.   We thought this one was kind of cute, it has beer bottle and soda bottle caps crimped around the outside edge and in the hat band. She decided against it. Not traditional enough for her.

 The rooms at this resort are beautiful. Two queen bed, the bed scarves are a boot and rope print and it is repeated in the shower curtain in the bathroom. There is a stuffed toy horse on every bed, you can see them sitting on the headboard if you look closely.

I did not take pictures of the projects I completed. One of the other ladies did and she will get them to me. I will share them next week.  Here is one quilt top that a fellow quilter shared on her facebook page. It is called Paper Dolls and the main section is paper pieced. Can you see the family, a Mom, a Dad, a girl and a dog?

I can't wait until she has it quilted and bound, completely done. It will be stunning. She plans to hang it in their family room.

Until next time,
Stay Busy and Stay Happy


Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Wondrous Words Wednesday 10-21-15

Join us as we celebrate words!   Did you find a new word while reading, or listening or watching? Share it on your blog then link up your post with Kathy at Bermuda Onion's Weblog

My words this week were found while reading  A Corpse for Yew by Joyce and Jim Lavene. This is the 5th installment in the Peggy Lee Garden Mystery series. This one is right up my alley, a mystery with references to gardening and even a bit of romance. 

chalcedony - noun

:  a translucent variety of quartz of various colors and waxy luster

" A very nice sienna-colored variety of chalcedony.  Carnelian."

This description really did not help me visualize the ring that Peggy and Mia found. So I searched further. Here is an image I found of Carnelian. Now I can see what the ring might have looked like. 

seitan- noun

:  flavored wheat gluten often used as a meat analogue

"Fine. This is really good seitan." She tried to change the subject. " Would you like to try some?"

Ok, I still wasn't sure about what seitan might be.  So enter, Goggle.  I sure hope Peggy's dinner looked like example #1 and not like the 2nd photo.

This looks like it might be pretty good. 

This looks a little pale and maybe not so good. 

Anyway, these are my words for today. 

Until next time
Stay Busy and Stay Happy

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

First Chapter, First Paragraph Tuesday-The Round House 10-20-15

Every Tuesday, Diane at Bibliophile By The Sea hosts this wonderful meme. It is a place to share the first few words of a book you are reading or hope to read soon. Write a post and link up with us at Diane's blog

I am away from home today at a quilting retreat. I hope that I will have some reading time at the end of the day back in my room. This is the next month's read for my Face to Face Book Club. Have you read it yet?

The Round House
Louise Erdrich
Harper Collins 2012
National Book Award for Fiction

Chapter One
Small trees had attacked my parent's house at the foundation. They were just seedlings with one or two rigid. healthy leaves. Nevertheless, the stalky shoots had managed to squeeze through knife cracks in the decorative brown shingles covering the cement blocks. They had grown into the unseen wall and it was difficult to pry them loose. My father wiped his palm across his forehead and damned their toughness. I was using a rusted old dandelion fork with a splintered handle; he wielded a long, slim fireplace poker that was probably doing more harm than good. As my father prodded away blindly at the placed where he sensed the roots might have penetrated, he was surely making convenient holes in the mortor for next year's seedlings. 

This first chapter paints quite a picture, don't you think?  But it doesn't give you an idea of what the book might be about. This is the first paragraph of the inside book flap.
One Sunday in the spring of 1988, a woman living on a reservation in North Dakota is attacked. The details of the crime are slow to surface as Geraldine Coutts is traumatized and reluctant to relive or reveal what happened, either to the police or to her husband, Bazil, and thirteen-year-old son, Joe. In one day, Joe's life is irrevocable transformed. He tries to heal his mother, but she will not leave her bed and slips into an abyss of solitude. Increasingly alone, Joe finds himself thrust prematurely into an adult world for which he is ill prepared. 

I am anxious to get started on this one. It has been on my TBR list for a couple of years and now is my chance! An added bonus, is that helps complete one category for my Favorite Book Challenge on Goodreads. WHoo Hoo!  It's an "R".

Until next time,
Stay Busy and Stay Happy

Monday, October 19, 2015

It's Monday! What Are You Reading? 10-19-15

Sheila at Book Journey has passed the baton of hosting this favorite Monday meme to Kathryn at Book Date. Do you like the new button? Sheila designed it and Kathryn decided to keep it for now. Tell us what you are reading or planning to read , then link up at Kathryn's blog, Book Date.

This week will be a good reading week for me. I am leaving Tuesday morning to sew with 10 other women at a ranch resort near Buffalo WY.  Although I will sew, sew, sew, there will be time in the room at night to read. I won't have meals to fix, nor laundry to do, nor will I have a roommate to be concerned about.

I want to read this one:

“If we know this story, we haven’t seen it yet in American fiction, not until now. . . . Deep, heartfelt.” —The New York Times Book Review

“Lydia is dead. But they don’t know this yet.” So begins this exquisite novel about a Chinese American family living in 1970s small-town Ohio. Lydia is the favorite child of Marilyn and James Lee, and her parents are determined that she will fulfill the dreams they were unable to pursue. But when Lydia’s body is found in the local lake, the delicate balancing act that has been keeping the Lee family together is destroyed, tumbling them into chaos. A profoundly moving story of family, secrets, and longing,Everything I Never Told You is both a gripping page-turner and a sensitive family portrait, uncovering the ways in which mothers and daughters, fathers and sons, and husbands and wives struggle, all their lives, to understand one another.

The above is the synopsis from Goodreads. 

I also hope to start reading The Round House by Louise Erdrich. It has been on my list for quite awhile now and my F2F book club decided to read it for discussion in November. Yay!

From Goodreeads: 

One Sunday in the spring of 1988, a woman living on a reservation in North Dakota is attacked. The details of the crime are slow to surface as Geraldine Coutts is traumatized and reluctant to relive or reveal what happened, either to the police or to her husband, Bazil, and thirteen-year-old son, Joe. In one day, Joe's life is irrevocably transformed. He tries to heal his mother, but she will not leave her bed and slips into an abyss of solitude. Increasingly alone, Joe finds himself thrust prematurely into an adult world for which he is ill prepared.

While his father, who is a tribal judge, endeavors to wrest justice from a situation that defies his efforts, Joe becomes frustrated with the official investigation and sets out with his trusted friends, Cappy, Zack, and Angus, to get some answers of his own. Their quest takes them first to the Round House, a sacred space and place of worship for the Ojibwe. And this is only the beginning.

I am anticipating a great time with quilting friends and some unexpected but welcome alone time in the evening. 

Til next time
Stay Busy and Stay Happy

Sunday, October 18, 2015

Non Reading Quilting Challenge #4 Stonehenge Challenge.

Using the Scrap Crazy Templates I pieced the following quilt using Stonehenge fabrics that I won at a quilt retreat. I used this Scrap Crazy Template set. It was easy and fun. I used a pinwheel type of setting. 

The large pinwheel type blocks are made up of 4 of the small 6" blocks, so they are 12" square. I drafted the pattern on graph paper and colored it in so I could remember how it went together. Then I tried several sizes of borders.  Below I auditioned some different fabrics for the borders. I finally settled on brown. I scraped a bit but did have enough. The backing was some grey I have had in my stash for 11 years ( I know this because I used it on my oldest granddaughters graduation quilt.) Since there was not quite enough, I used the PINK shown below in backing. 

 This is another of the different fabrics. I did use this in some of the blocks to give it a punch of color. It is so varied that some of the pieces were green and some more peach.

I decided on dark brown for borders and will make a scrappy binding. This is a photo of the quilt just back from the long arm quilter. It needs to be trimmed and the binding added.
The basket is a door prize I won while we were at a RC Aircraft Fly In in Sheridan WY.  That is where the long arm quilter lives so I was able to pick up my quilt while we were there. 
Below is a close up of the quilting. 

And it is done! The binding is done, the label is on for display at our NEW Quilt Show, Oct 3rd. Then I will change the label to a more personal one and send it to my brother in a neighboring state. He recently lost his life partner and I feel he needs a Comfort Quilt. 

10/18/15    End note: I mailed it off to my brother, he got it yesterday. He called me with tears in his voice. He was touched. Even better, last week would have been Rhonda's 65th birthday and he says she would have loved it too. 

Saturday, October 17, 2015

Saturday Snapshots 10/17/15

Join us for Saturday Snapshots hosted by Melinda at West Metro Mommy Reads.  Share snapshots that you or a family member has taken, not random photos found online. Make sure they are suitable for all eyes and share them on your blog. Then link up at West Metro Mommy Reads and tell us as little or as much as you would like to about them. Fun!

This week I don't have much to share, but my infamous amaryllis bloomed again, way way early. I wondered if it was a reminder that Christmas is only 9 Saturdays away!  Yikes!  So, I will share that news and a photo reminder.

I am headed for a quilt retreat next Tuesday through Thursday, so will have some photos to share when I return  I am really looking forward to 3 days to sew and maybe read a little and enjoy.

Stay Busy and Stay Happy

Friday, October 16, 2015

TGIF Friday 56 and Book Beginnings

This week I have finally begun a new book or books to be more correct. I have a couple of challenges to be finished before the end of the year and need to get reading to complete them. I joined Cruisin' Thre the Cozies, hosted by Yvonne at Socrates Book Reviews. I joined at the Investigator Level - 7-12 books. You can find my changing list here.   I also have a Favorite Book Challenge going at Goodreads with the group Love of Reading. You can see my post about that one here.  So here goes:

Friday 56 : Page 56 from A Corpse for Yew by Jim and Joyce Lavene.

"You can't exactly call me a redhead anymore." She pushed at her white hair self-consciously. "Now in my youth..."

Book Beginnings : Everything I Never Told You by Celeste Ng

                                       Lydia is dead. But they don't know it yet. 

I need to read quite a few books that start with the letter "E".  This will be one.

Until next time
Stay Busy and Stay Happy