w.w.w. wednesdays

To play along, just answer the following three (3) questions…

• What are you currently reading? I'm listening to Night Music by Jojo Moyes and I'm reading Landline by Rainbow Rowell.

• What did you recently finish reading? I listened to The Fever by Megan Abbott. And I read The Shadow Of The Wind by Carlos Ruiz Zafon.

• What do you think you’ll read next? I just downloaded The Vacationers by Emma Straub.


the best medicine

July 22: What makes you laugh

Lots! I laugh a lot, often, and frequently. Funny photos of puppies! Or other silly animal shots.

ten things tuesday

10 songs I listened to on my recent road trip:

1) Razor by the Foo Fighters

2) All of the Stars by Ed Sheeran

3) Angels by Robbie Williams

4) Use Somebody by Kings of Leon

5) Money on My Mind by Sam Smith

6) Calypso by John Denver

7) Best Friend by Jason Mraz

8) Lovers Forever by Cher

9) Bomfalleralla by Afasi & Filthy

10) Timber by Pitbull & Kesha


yakkety-yak, talk back!

I'm nostalgic. I got to spend time with some very dear friends. I hadn't seen Missy in several months, she's a buddy from knitting group and we did some yarn shopping. We had a delicious lunch and spent hours chatting. I checked in at the hotel and got ready for my dinner date with Barb, whom I lost touch with about 25 years ago. We were so close and I've always regretted losing touch with her. I admit I was nervous. But I found the place and we met on the sidewalk--and recognized each other instantly! Although I expected some awkwardness, it was as if no time had passed. We got talking and catching up and it was like months had passed since the last time we spoke. It was nice catching up on our families (our siblings were the same ages and friendly) and our careers (she's a teacher, too). The evening passed too quickly. Saturday morning, I got together with my best friend from high school, Jon. The years, all 20, melted away as we got talking. And talking. And talking. And... talking. Lots of laughter and lots of great memories, but lots of talk of today. We just fell into our friendship again. We used to go for long drives and listen to music and solve all the world's problems and that's partly what we did. I'm sad that he's not as happy as I wish he would be. Ten hours later, when I got back to the hotel, I was exhausted and exhilarated. Two important people from my past are going to be part of the future. Sunday, my bestie, Val, met Jon and me for breakfast--she also happened to be in the Portland area--so she got to catch up with Jon, too! Then Val and I followed each other home, which was weirdly fun because I wanted to yak and yak with her to catch up and gossip. It was worth missing my class reunion to connect with two of my friends from high school.

musing mondays

Click here to play along.
Musing Mondays asks you to muse about one of the following each week…

• Describe one of your reading habits.
• Tell us what book(s) you recently bought for yourself or someone else, and why you chose that/those book(s).
• Tell us what you’re reading right now — what you think of it, so far; why you chose it; what you are (or, aren’t) enjoying about it.
• What book are you currently desperate to get your hands on? Tell us about it!
• Do you have a bookish rant? Something about books or reading (or the industry) that gets your ire up? Share it with us!
• Instead of the above questions, maybe you just want to ramble on about something else pertaining to books — let’s hear it, then!

I'm thinking about reading phases. Sometimes all I want to read are mysteries. Sometimes it's rom-coms. Sometimes it's literary fiction. Or YA. This summer I'm in a mystery phase.

What about you?

finished reading

Set in Barcelona in 1945, it's a Gothic mystery. Originally written in Spanish and translated to English but the translation is beautifully done, the language retains it's richness. You can even kind of consider it a coming-of-age story.

From the publisher:
Barcelona, 1945 - Just after the war, a great world city lies in shadow, nursing its wounds, and a boy named Daniel awakes one day to find that he can no longer remember his mother's face. To console his only child, Daniel's widowed father, an antiquarian book dealer, initiates him into the secret of the Cemetery of Forgotten Books, a library tended by Barcelona's guild of rare-book dealers as a repository for books forgotten by the world, waiting for someone who will care about them again. Daniel's father coaxes him to choose a book from the spiraling labyrinth of shelves, one that, it is said, will have a special meaning for him. And Daniel so loves the book he selects, a novel called The Shadow of the Wind by one Julian Carax, that he sets out to find the rest of Carax's work. To his shock, he discovers that someone has been systematically destroying every copy of every book this author has written. In fact, he may have the last of Carax's books in existence. Before Daniel knows it, his seemingly innocent quest has opened a door into one of Barcelona's darkest secrets, an epic story of murder, magic, madness, and doomed love, and before long he realizes that if he doesn't find out the truth about Julian Carax, he and those closest to him will suffer horribly.


July 21: Your favorite story.

My dad has written a series of short stories for his writing group that feature a dysFUNctional family of loveable losers. A compilation of crazy characters he's met over the years. This series of stories continues to amuse me to no end. Their hijinks and shenanigans are hilarious! I hope that one day he'll publish them as a collection--even if it's just for family and friends.


sunday stealing

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Sunday Stealing: Summer Meme

Favorite summer flower: I think a stargazer lilly is nice

Flavor of ice cream: lately it's been Ben & Jerry's "Hazed & Confused"

Mode of transportation: nothing like a nice drive

Music: The soundtrack of my summer this year is Sam Smith's "In The Lonely Hour"

Food: salad

Favorite game to play: bocce

Earliest childhood summer memory: slipping through the grass with my sisters when we run through the sprinkler

Favorite Drink: an Arnie Palmer (lemonade and iced tea)

Favorite Snack: cucumber slices

Place to read: on the porch

Most annoying: humidity!!!!!

How I handle the heat: whining... or sleeping

Pet Peeve: 90+ degrees

All-time favorite bathing suit: a shirred black one piece

Best Time of Day: whenever it's not too hot

Most romantic: stargazing at night

Summer movie: Four Weddings And A Funeral


PostSecret is an ongoing community art project where people mail in their secrets anonymously on one side of a postcard. I like to post one that speaks to me each week.

saturday 9

Ring of Fire

1) Recorded by Johnny Cash, "Ring of Fire" was written by his wife, June Carter. Johnny's daughter Roseanne says it's about "the transformative power of their love." What's your favorite love song? "You Are" by Wynonna Judd

2) Though more than 50 years old, this song is still popular today. Country Music Television named it one of the best and most requested of all time. Are you a country music fan? I am, it's not my first genre choice but I like a lot of it

3) This recording features mariachi horns, inspired by Mexican folk music. Have you ever been to Mexico? briefly

4) Cash's birth certificate said, "J. R. Cash," and "J.R." is what his parents always called him. When he enlisted in the Air Force, Uncle Sam refused to let him simply go by initials, so he chose the name "John." If you could choose a different name for yourself, what would it be? I don't know, but it would be a vowel name

5) Cash and his first wife, Vivian, had their first date at a roller skating rink. Tell us about one of your first dates. my last first date was kind of a blind date, we met for dinner not knowing what the other looked like, having only communicated through text.

6) Cash died in September, 2003, four months after he lost his second wife, and love of his life, June. The cause of death given was complications from diabetes, but his children believe he died of a broken heart. Do you think that's possible? oh, yes

7) Cash was known as "The Man in Black." What color do you wear most often? lately, white

8) There's a Johnny Cash Museum in Nashville. What's the last museum you visited? the living museum of the Old Port

9) A stretch of Tennessee Highway 31E is known as "Johnny Cash Parkway." What street in your town is named for a famous person? Dudley Street, I know it's a last name but I don't know the history...

daydreamy weather

July 19: The weather today.

In Portland, it was low 80s, some sunshine but mostly overcast. A lovely breeze. Great day for wandering the Old Port.

July 20: A daydream you had.

One of the places we visited was Inn By The Sea, a luxury resort and spa. Yeah, I know, we didn't receive any spa services but we did walk the grounds and went to the private beach. This place is amazing! Magnificent! Impressive! My daydream is to luxuriate in the splendor.


best book

July 18: Best book ever.

Yeah, that's not going to happen. So instead of the best book EVER, I'll go with the best book I've read in 2014: The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt.