Monday, September 26, 2016


My weekend began on Thursday afternoon, and I had lots of wonderful things planned.  After I picked Sophie up from the groomer, I headed home and took a quick nap before my sister in law Karen came by so we could go to the Georgia Tech vs Clemson game.  Let's just say that the company, food and margarita's at Escorpion was much better than the game itself!

Friday morning I met Mary at the Atlanta Botanical Gardens to see the Chihuily exhibit.  It was wonderful.  We spent almost 2 hours at the exhibit and then walked towards midtown Atlanta and enjoyed a delicious lunch and bottle of wine at Cafe Intermezzo-spinach/artichoke crepe and a hummus platter-so good!  I think we spent almost as much time at lunch as we did at the garden talking about everything from politics/religion [just a bit], recently read books, book club dilemmas, our Alaska trip next summer, knitting, etc.  I can't think of a better way to spend the day.
It's these times that remind me how blessed I am to have these wonderful women in my life.
I was thrilled to ride my bike both Saturday AND Sunday-I always start out wondering what in the world am I doing! However, when I'm done I feel sooooo good [and sweaty!].  I was also excited that I didn't have anything else on my calendar for Saturday.  That was my day to do some cooking and get ready for the next week.  I started The Japanese Lover by Isabelle Allende for book club, Still Life by Louise Penny [in my ears], and finished The Secret Place by Tana French.  I enjoyed the Tana French book, but wonder if the author's voice of teenage girls in 2014 is for real-it sounded a bit too 1980s for me.  Saturday also included ALOT of college football, and we actually watched some really good games.  I managed to finish the last square for my Kaffe Fassette Knit Along afghan!  Now I have to block and seam the afghan together ;-P.  I'm not putting any deadlines on myself for this one.

Sunday afternoon included a matinee at our local community theatre-Stage Door Players.  This was our third show, and the first as season ticket holders.  We saw an adaptation of Barefoot in the Park, and it was excellent.  The weekend wrapped up with professional food ball, snacks and then bbq tenderloin for dinner.  I'm still doing really well in Fantasy Football-can't wait to see the results after tonight's game.  Now to decide which train wreck to watch tonight- the debate or the Atlanta/Saints game.  I know I'll be starting with the season premiere of the Big Bang Theory, and I might have to retreat to the bedroom to continue reading another new book Blind Sight by Carol O'Connell.  This is one of mine and my boss's favorite authors and she doesn't have books published very often.  He's already finished it, so I'm dying to find out how this book ends!  Hope you had a wonderful weekend, and that your week is filled with lots of good stuff.

Tuesday, September 13, 2016

I'm ready for some Football

While it doesn't feel like fall [at least in Georgia], the sports calendar certainly says it is cause there is football at all levels now.  I'm in second place [Team Poodle Power] in the office Fantasy Football league.  There are only 2 of us girls in the league and Lindsay is in first place [ahead of me by 11 points].  I'm beginning to like this whole fantasy football thing!  Carole's prompt is about football food.  I can get into serious trouble with this one cause there are so many good options, but they aren't necessarily good for you!  Here's my list.

10:  Chili-red, white, vegetarian.  I like em all
 9.   Gumbo-I made a pot Sunday using this recipe and it's the best one yet.
 8.   Nachos-anyway you top them as long as there is some cheese I'm good.
 7.   Veggies and hummus or other bean dips.
 6.    Potato chips and dip-especially if they are both homemade.
 5.    Antipasti type platters and some good bread and apples.
 4.    Cold beer-not a food-but goes hand in hand with football.
 3.    Muffaletta sandwiches-mine usually don't have the mortadella or salami, but I love the olive salad combined with the bread and cheese.
 2.    Cupcakes and red wine-not necessarily together, but anytime is a good time for cupcakes and they are so handy if you are tailgating, and red wine is a must during the fall.
 1.    Nuts and Bolts-a snack mix that our family has enjoyed for years, it's really hard to resist. What's not to love about chex mix, peanuts, and pretzels with just a bit of seasoning?!

I know there will be some great favorites posted, maybe I'll get a new idea or 2

Thursday, September 8, 2016


I tried this last year, but only managed about half of the books.  This year I was so excited to finish all 25 right before Labor Day!  My primary criteria was to purchase as few books as possible and I only bought one.  I borrowed a couple from my mother in law, a bunch from the library, and I had a few on my bookshelf.    This is such a neat challenge I hope someone will do something similar next year not that Books on the Night Stand is no longer podcasting.  Here are my books-I included a little bit about them without doing a full fledge recap of the stories.

Young Adult Novel The Paul Street Boys-Ferenc Molnar just okay-this book is a Hungarian translation written during the early 1900s.  It was supposedly critically acclaimed, but I think something was lost in the translation or the time period.

Epistolary Novel The Guernsey Literary & Potato Peel Pie Society-Mary Ann Shaffer really enjoyed this book-such a fun bunch of characters

A Play Cat on a Hot Tin Roof-Tennessee Williams I think I need to actually see this to appreciate it.  I’ve never read anything by Tennessee Williams so I’m glad to add him to my list of authors.

That You Can Finish in One Sitting/Day Sula-Toni Morrison an interesting story, I really didn’t like Sula at the end of the story.

By or about a Celebrity Shop Girl- Steve Martin very good a fun read-who knew Steve Martin was so versatile!

A Newbery or Caldecott Winner-A Gathering of Days-A New England Girl’s Journal, 1830-32 Joan Bloss-this was written in the format of journal entries by a girl in 1800s Massachusetts.  I’m a sucker for anything that is historical.

By an author whose last name begins with X, Y, or Z I am Malala-Malal Yousafzai true story about life as a girl in Afghanistan. Makes me appreciate that I live in America.

With an Alliterative Title Love Letters Debbie Macomber- A typical Debbie Macomber novel with a happy ending.

Set during a War or Conflict All the Light That We Do Not See Anthony Doerr-loved this book-I was really hoping that some things would have turned out differently.

A Classic Mystery   Death in the Stocks-Georgette Heyer I think Agatha Christie is a much better author.  There was some dialogue that made the characters appear to be shallow and insipid.  Perhaps that is in keeping with the time period of the writing.  I might give this author another try as I’m a big fan of Dorothy Sayer and Agatha Christie maybe this one was a dud.

Told by a Child Narrator Lovely Bones-Alice Sebold Loved this-even though it is a sad story, I was captivated until the very end.  I wish the bad guy had been caught, but the icicle was pretty clever.

Set in Australia/Oceania Big Little Lies-Liane Morarity Liked this book better than The Husband’s Secret.  This was an audio book, and while it took me a bit to warm up to the sound of the narrator’s voice.  The narrator was one of the reasons why I didn’t like The Husband’s Secret it; however, she does a fantastic job of bringing the kids in this book to life.  I chuckled out loud lots of times.  I also think the overall plot of this book was better than The Husbands Secret

Free Square Tempting Fate-Jane Green another just okay, this book has a similar to plot Love Letters.  A much different ending from Love Letters which I didn’t find plausible.

About Art or An Artist The Painted Kiss-Elizabeth Hickey great book about an Austrian artist and some of his well-known paintings.  I plan to look into more books by this author.

Written by Two or More Authors Mycroft Holmes-Kareem ABudl-Jabbar and Anna Waterhouse-this was another great book.  I have to say I kept visualizing Benedict Cumberbatch as Mycroft vs Sherlock.

That Spans Multiple Generations The Family Corleone-Edward Flaco and Mario Puzo this was pretty good.  Having been familiar with The Godfather, I sorta knew what was going to happen.  The alliances and loyalties were interesting to read.

Popular Psychology Girl Interrupted-Susanna Kaysen wow-I’m glad we know a lot more about mental health than we did back in the day.

Published the Year You Were Born A Small Town in Germany-John Le Carre-good spy book.  I’ve noticed a distinct writing style with books that were written 40+ year ago.  I really had to read this one to keep up with the players.

A Short Story Anthology Runaway-Alice Munro I’ve read Alice Munro before and I don’t quite get her short stories.

About an Epic Journey In the Heart of the Sea-Nathaniel Philbuck loved this, there were some grisly parts as it goes into detail about the whaling industry in the 18/19th century, but I learned a lot about the whale ship Essex.  I even looked up more details after I was finished.

Set in the Place Where you Live Peachtree Road-Anne River Siddons I loved reading about my hometown, the time line was a bit confusing because some of the landmarks mentioned were not in existence at the time of the character setting. 

Fiction set during a Plague In the Shadow of Blackbirds-Cat Winters this was pretty good and it was interesting to learn about the flu epidemic and some of the “cures”.

With a Day of the Week in the Title Tuesdays with Morrie-Mitch Albom-this was really good.  The character Morrie reminded me so much of PJ and the man he would have been.   This is a book I’d definitely re-read at some point.

 With a Number in the Title Station Eleven-Emily St. John Mandel-this was pretty good for a post-apocalyptic world plot.  I was afraid it would be too sci-fi-y, but it wasn’t I enjoyed reading how the survivors were able to rebuild the world.

By an Author Who Shares your First Name How to Tell Toledo from the Night Sky Lydia Netzer this book was pretty hoakie, maybe it was just me.  Star crossed lovers, destiny, etc. or maybe the narrator’s voice just annoyed me.

Tuesday, September 6, 2016

Weekend Fun

While the calendar says it's time to put up the white jeans and shoes the weather clearly hasn't gotten the message.  While we had a few days in the 80s it hasn't taken long for the temps to creep back up in the afternoon.  This long Labor Day weekend had a wonderful blend of fun and "must dos"

10.  Football-went to Fado's to see the Georgia Tech vs Boston College game with a local kick off time of 7:30 AM!
 9.  Steve and I finally put up all the artwork that we wanted at the apartment.  There are a few things we want to get reframed, and some things for the office., but for the most part is is done!
 8.  Organized some of the boys stuff-always good do to a little purging and organizing.
 7.  A bike ride-just one as I had other things to do this weekend, but it was great to get out on the road
 6.  A lovely day with Mary-church, lunch [smoke salmon pizza anyone?!], and the movies to see The Light Between Oceans.  So good!  The knitwear was so much fun to see-the period costuming was amazing.
 5.  Sewing- almost done with Tieman baby #2
 4.  Laundry-not fun, but you know something you have to do.
 3.  Reading, I finished The Paris Architect-such a good book, but it ended abruptly so I don't know how I feel about it.  This is a book that will be discussed at my local library so I'll be interested to hear what others have to say about the ending.
 2.  Enjoyed a low country boil on Friday night along with some banana pudding, and burgers on the grill.  Definitely a last blast of summer activity!
 1.  Took a class at the Apple Store-am getting more comfortable with my MacBook.  The Apple Store is such a cool place.

Hope you enjoyed a long weekend, or at least a weekend that brought some joy to your day(s).

Friday, September 2, 2016

Five on Friday

1.  Still enjoying the balcony [Sophie is too, but she is pretty worn out from being at my office today]-I have gone from coffee to a glass of prosecco!

2.  Looking forward to a low country boil with Steve at Vino Venue tonight.  I know a few ladies I'd love to have join me here some time for wine tasting and perhaps to share a smoke salmon quesadilla!

3.  Over this long weekend there will be college football [maybe at Fado's at 7:00 am?!  GT vs BC] Definitely knitting, church [first time in a while], a quick lunch and a movie on Sunday.  I am hoping that The Light Between the Oceans in movie format is as good as the book.  I haven't even looked at the reviews.

4.  One special project that I hope to have finished this weekend.  Putting all of the cards, messages, etc for PJ into one special place.  My goal is to have all of the childhood/baby stuff for both boys consolidated and moved into the closet until our next move.

5.  Will be getting a hands on lesson for my new laptop tomorrow at the Apple store.

I'm pretty excited about what the weekend has in store for me-hope this Labor Day weekend finds you relaxing and not laboring.  I'm also hoping that we'll have a true break from the hot-hot weather.