made my day

One of my favorite students made this origami elephant. I love the little tail. I should see if there is a donkey and have political figures!


Hot Drinks: I enjoy hot chocolate, hot tea, and hot coffee. Here's a very rich cup of cocoa I had in Quebec.

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happy crafty

Combining October 19 & 20: Happy mail and Getting crafty

I got this yarn in the mail today and I'm going to knit some Christmas gifts from it!

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booking through thursday

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Somebody walks up to you and says, “I need a really good book to read–any genre. What do you recommend?”

What’s the first book off the top of your head?

For a mystery/thriller: The Woman in Cabin 10 by Ruth Ware

For literature: Commonwealth by Ann Patchett; Station Eleven by Emily St. John Mandel

For feel-good contemporary fiction: One in a Million Boy by Monica Wood; Be Frank With Me by Julia Claiborne Johnson; or Something Missing by Matthew Dicks

For YA: The Raven Cycle by Maggie Stiefvater


yarn along

Join in every Wednesday to share a single photo of what you are knitting and reading too!

Knitting the Scraptastic Hat and listening to A Little Life by Hanya Yanagihara.

w.w.w. wednesday

Welcome to WWW Wednesday! This meme was formerly hosted by MizB at Should be Reading and revived here on Taking on a World of Words.

• What are you currently reading? I'm reading Jojo Moyes' Paris For One and at school: Flip Your Classroom and listening to A Little Life by Hanya Yanagihara.

• What did you recently finish reading? I finished re-reading Cinnamon & Gunpowder by Eli Brown for my book group and The Woman in Cabin 10 by Ruth Ware for my other book group and I also listened to Chains by Laure Halse Anderson.

• What do you think you’ll read next? I have no idea!

finished reading

I thought this was a very taught thriller. I resented having to put it down! The narrator, Laura "Lo" Blacklock is a high-end travel writer with the opportunity of a lifetime--she is tapped to fill in for her boss and go on the maiden voyage of a boutique, high-end, luxury cruise ship. This could be the big break of her career. Just days before she is to embark on this opportunity, she is burgled and attacked by an intruder; on the heels of the burglary she has a major blowout with her boyfriend which puts her relationship status in jeopardy. Sleep deprived and anxiety riddled, Lo embarks on a cruise through the fjords.

It's a classic mystery thriller--an unreliable narrator, a claustrophobic setting, and suspense to spare.

From the publisher:
In this tightly wound story, Lo Blacklock, a journalist who writes for a travel magazine, has just been given the assignment of a lifetime: a week on a luxury cruise with only a handful of cabins. At first, Lo’s stay is nothing but pleasant: the cabins are plush, the dinner parties are sparkling, and the guests are elegant. But as the week wears on, frigid winds whip the deck, gray skies fall, and Lo witnesses what she can only describe as a nightmare: a woman being thrown overboard. The problem? All passengers remain accounted for—and so, the ship sails on as if nothing has happened, despite Lo’s desperate attempts to convey that something (or someone) has gone terribly, terribly wrong…


ten things tuesday

Current favorites: Combining this with Ten Things Tuesday

1) John Legend's Love Me Now

2) The gorgeous fall we've enjoyed.

3) Designated Survivor.

4) This Is Us.

5) Audiobooks. I've recently downloaded a couple new ones, like A Little Life and By Gaslight.

6) Knitting hats! I've knit up a bunch lately and it's been so relaxing and fun.

7) The Exorcist.

8) Litsy. I'm having so much fun with this app.

9) The reading challenge on Goodreads. I absolutely love keeping track of my books.

10) Reese's Peanut Butter Cups.

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Fall outfit of the day:

Ok, I'm wearing dark purple jeans, a purple/pink/blue/beige paisley top, purple suede shoes, and a tan faux leather jacket. One of my students said I looked "very purple" and I thanked her.

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musing mondays

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Musing Mondays asks you to muse about one of the following each week…

• I’m currently reading…
• Up next I think I’ll read…
• I bought the following book(s) in the past week…
• I’m super excited to tell you about (book/author/bookish-news)…
• I’m really upset by (book/author/bookish-news)…
• I can’t wait to get a copy of…
• I wish I could read ___, but…
• I blogged about ____ this past week…

This week’s random question: Who are the key players in your current book? (or current themes, if nonfiction)

In The Woman In Cabin 10 by Ruth Ware, Lo Blacklock is the unreliable narrator. I just started listening to Hanya Yanagihara's A Little Life and the characters are college friends: Willem, JB, Malcolm, and Jude; I am not far enough into the book to get a sense of each of them yet.



Something scary: The dentist. I'm getting better about it and going regularly, but shnikeys--the dentist scares me!

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sunday stealing

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Wish List Meme, part two

26.) Favorite kids name? I like vowel names
27.) Do you speak any other languages? I am fluent in ubbi dubbi, igpay atinlay, and sarcasm
28.) Do you use Twitter? yes
29.) Do you go onto YouTube? yes--you can find anything!
30.) Do you play Angry Birds? no
31.) Do you like Angry Birds? sure
32.) Do you like Hello Kitty? sure
33.) Have you ever cried because you were so happy? I have
34.) Who would you like to see in concert? U2
35.) Can you swim well? I can swim, I don't know how well
36.) Ever won a contest? not that I can remember
37.) Ever won a giveaway? yes!
38.) Do you get a full 8 hours of sleep every night? I try to
39.) What tea do you like? Constant Comment
40.) What coffee do you like? Dunkin' Donuts iced
41.) Do you shop at Walmart? not often
42.) Do you shop at Target? there isn't one near here
43.) What do you order at Second Cup? nothing
45.) Do you like homemade meals? yes, but I don't have them often
46.) Do you like homemade baked goods? yum! yes!!
47.) Do you shop online? the majority of my shopping is
48.) Name 3 stores online stores you would like to shop at: Amazon, Barnes & Noble, Land's End
49.) What holiday don't you like? Valentine's Day
50.) What do you eat more of when you're sick? I actually don't eat much when I'm not feeling well


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.


warm and cozy

Warm and cozy: Comfy recliner with handmade quilt.

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finished reading

A great historical fiction book! I was so saddened by Isabel's treatment--Mrs. Lockton is petty and cruel.

From the publisher:
Freedom. In 1776 New England, that word is on everyone's lips. But for 13-year-old Isabel, the word holds a different meaning, especially after the only mistress she has ever known dies, and instead of receiving the freedom promised, she and her younger sister, Ruth, are sold to the Locktons, a wealthy New York family.

In a matter of hours, Isabel has to leave bucolic Rhode Island for the hustle and bustle of colonial New York City - a community intensely divided and caught up in the American colonies struggle for independence. As Isabel tries to work out her own freedom, she soon finds herself a pawn in a game of cat-and-mouse between the Locktons, who are fierce supporters of the king, and the growing rebel forces trying to take over the city.

Alliances are made and promises are broken, and Isabel learns the hard way that the "freedom" she's being asked to spy for does not extend to her. And when her beloved Ruth is sold off, she begins to discover that the only freedom she'll ever have is the freedom she takes for herself.

saturday 9

If I Knew You Were Comin'

1) This song is performed by a woman who is positively tickled to have unexpected company. How do you feel when people drop by unannounced?
NO--stay away!

2) She is clearly proud of her skills in the kitchen. Do you enjoy baking? Cooking?
I used to bake and cook a lot but I don't anymore, it's too much fuss and muss

3) Reference is made to hiring a band. Tell us the last time you were at an event with live music. in NYC there was a band playing in a restaurant we went to (I can't remember the name of the place and I'm too lazy to look it up)

4) After making recordings in the early 1950s, Eileen Barton appeared on daytime TV in the early 1960s -- including a game show called Video Village. Let's say we're all headed to a TV game show taping this morning. Would you volunteer to appear as a contestant? Or would you rather just stay in the audience? I would rather watch, but I'd be a good sport and play to win if I was a contestant

5) In 1961, Ms. Barton got married in Juarez, Mexico. What's the longest distance you've ever traveled to attend a wedding? Pennsylvania for my niece's wedding in 2013

6) In 1950, when this song was popular, the Detroit Red Wings won the Stanley Cup. Are you looking forward to the upcoming NHL season? I will occasionally look in on a game

7) 1950 also marks the first time anyone in the United States paid by credit card. Do you pay with a credit card to get rewards? If yes, what rewards are you accumulating (points, cash back, airline miles)? I can trade in my points for gift cards

8) In 1950, an athlete named Florence Chadwick swam the English Channel. Are you a good swimmer? I am ok

9) Random question: Think about the last "white lie" you told. Was it to spare someone's feelings, or to make your day go more smoothly? to spare someone's feelings