Monday, March 10, 2014

Monday Malarkey - Sunshine, books, cats, new bookshelves and bookmark fun

Ah, back to normal weather after last week's surprise dusting of snow.  It's been sunny and mild with gorgeous partly-cloudy skies for several days, now.  Loving it, even though I'm not a fan of the spring pollen.  It took me several days to recover from our weekend of finishing up the old house for the market; I was so sore from painting and scrubbing. So, I can't say the week started off being a productive one but it ended up that way, after I joined in on the 40 Bags in 40 Days challenge, which the husband found exciting. Although he introduced chaos into the equation (he was completely unwilling to focus on a single room at a time), we got a lot of cleaning accomplished and some clothing bagged, books to trade or get rid of boxed.

This week's arrivals:

  • Straight Man by Richard Russo via Paperback Swap (on the recommendation of a friend from my hometown, with whom I've just recently reconnnected)
  • Child Witch Kinshasa by Mike Ormsby from the author
  • To Rise Again at a Decent Hour by Joshua Ferris from Little Brown via Shelf Awareness

Last week's posts:

Argh, that's all!  I meant to post a lot more but I was a wreck so I guess I should be happy I managed as much as I did.  I didn't even manage to post a Fiona Friday pic on the wrong day!  Here's your apology photo . . . 2 cats for the price of one:

Books finished:

  • Goodnight Songs by Margaret Wise Brown - I actually read Goodnight Songs the moment it walked in the door and listened to the CD the next day. I merely forgot to write it on my calendar so I'm claiming it as one of last week's reads for the sake of having a place to link up on my list of monthly reads.  Review forthcoming.
  • The Taste of Apple Seeds by Katharina Hagena - I can't wait to babble about this one, actually.
  • Logopolis by Christopher H. Bidmead - a very old Dr. Who book, not fan fiction but a novelization of the 4-part serial starring the 4th Doctor, Tom Baker. 

Currently reading:

It changes from one day to the next; I'm not very focused, lately.  But, this morning I woke up early (strange - usually, it works the other way around, after a time change) and read a number of entries from Children's Wartime Diaries: Secret Writings from the Holocaust and WWII, ed. by Laurel Holliday. Consequently, I spent the morning swimming in tears.  I've been reading from Children's Wartime Diaries for weeks because it's rough reading and I can only usually stand so much at once.  But, I'd like to finish one of the three non-fiction books I have going, so I'll continue on with the reading and, hopefully, finish it tonight. There's no entry in my sidebar because I couldn't find an image of the book online, so I'll photograph it if/when I review it.

In other news:

I spent an evening making goofy owl bookmarks, last week, (mostly using pre-made stickers) and some time laminating them on another day.  Fun!  And, I've been loading books in the library closet.  Did I tell you about the library closet shelves?  I don't recall.  I suggested that we should take advantage of the high ceilings in our closets and thought it would be a good idea to build in additional shelving that went to the ceiling. Husband disagreed with the concept of built-ins, partly because he would be the one who had to do the carpentry and partly because he didn't want to make a permanent alteration to the house. Instead, he came up with the alternative of purchasing some Billy bookshelves from IKEA, installing them and raising the top shelf.

The closest IKEA is a 6-hour drive but he just happened to know someone who was planning to make an IKEA run, so he sent along the money for shelving with his friend and put the shelves up in a single day.  I've been loading them, off and on, since.  And, as much as I dislike particle-board shelving, I must admit I'm very happy to have those extra shelves to help me get books off the floor and figure out which titles I need to part with.  I have a terrible tendency to build little towers of books here, there and everywhere.

Hmm, I guess that's all the news, bookish and otherwise.  Our F2F group leader thought all the recent suggestions I solicited sounded depressing, so I'm still looking for suggestions. If you can recommend an upbeat book worth discussing for our May meeting, please let me know!

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  1. Cool bookshelves in closet. I am working on getting rid of some of my books. They overwhelm me sometimes. I am not reading as much as I used too. I have only read 14 books this year. I am focusing on review books and ones that I am pretty sure I will like right now. Its bad when your favorite hobby overwhelms you. lol

    1. Brittanie, we are constantly getting rid of books but obviously we still have plenty coming in. It's a never-ending battle, although not one I mind so much. I like being surrounded by books; I just don't want to be at the extreme of having piles of them on the floor so that's my big challenge.

      Wow, That's unusual for you! You really have cut back. I've read more, this year, but only because I've gotten a huge number of children's books -- which are fun. I'm having a good time. If I get overwhelmed, I just do something different for a couple of days. Sometimes I can't force myself to read ARCs so I just grab whatever calls to me. Logopolis called to me, last week, and I'm glad I listened. Everything else I glanced at was a clear "not now" and I've found that if I try to force myself to read something that isn't calling to me I'll just end up reading the same page 15 times, which is obviously pointless.

  2. I sure could use more bookshelves... or fewer books. ;)

    I think spring arrived here yesterday. It was 77, although we're supposed to get rain/snow tonight...

    How about Rainbow Rowell's Attachments for a book club selection? I read it a few weeks ago and loved it even more than Eleanor & Park. I'll try to think of more during the day and get back to you!

    1. Maybe a little of both, like me. :)

      Spring has sprung, here. The pear trees are blooming, Japanese magnolias are on the verge, daffodils everywhere. We don't have daffodils at our new house and they're one of my favorite flowers so I'll have to plant some in the fall.

      I'll look up Attachments. I know people love it but I don't know what it's about. Thanks!

  3. Oh, and Straight Man is quite good! I read it several years ago after reading Empire Falls and as I recall, there's quite a bit of dry humor, which I enjoyed.

    1. That's what my friend told me; she said Straight Man is quite funny. Glad to know you liked it, too! I don't think I've ever read Russo.

  4. Well we got snow this morning so I guess spring isn't here yet afterall. That is a cute picture of the kitties. :)
    Congrats on the new book shelves. I need more!

    1. You probably get a lot more snow than we do! That last snow was the latest snowfall we've ever experienced. Quite an unusual winter this country has had!

      Thanks! I've got a pic of Fiona swatting Isabel on the nose for touching her, too. That was funny. Sometimes I have to just tell Fiona it's okay, sister isn't trying to bother you and she'll just settle right down. They snuggled for quite a while after the nose-swat.

      Thanks! Yes, you do. You need more book shelves. I know this without even seeing your home. ;)

  5. aw, cure kitties. :) We are thinking about getting a friend for Casey maybe in the spring. She enjoys playing with other cats now, so it is a thought!

    1. Thanks, Kelly! Oooooh, that would be great if you got Casey a friend! More photos for us to see!!!! #selfishreasoniwantyoutogeta2ndcat


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