Rainy days … and books!


There are rainy days and then there are good rainy days.

I love a good rainy day. They’re usually in the Fall and involve a good book and an ample supply of chocolate. We haven’t had enough rainy days this year and I’m hoping that 2020 will bring us a healthy increase in the number of “book days.”

You see, my pile of books-to-be-read is about to overload the little table I store them on. It’s skinny little legs are looking a bit shaky these days. It’s not my fault, really. Between the lack of rainy days in 2019 and the fact that many of my favorite authors just keep on writing more books (a huge thanks to all of you, by the way), my little table just can’t keep up. What to do?

I know. Get off this post and go read. Silly me.

But first, if you haven’t already, try great reads from the following authors:

  • Jodi Taylor—especially The Chronicles of St. Mary’s series, starting with Just One Damned Thing After Another
  • Genevieve Gogman—start with The Invisible Library, it’s outstanding
  • C. J. Archer—start with The Palace of Lost Memories or The Watchmaker’s Daughter
  • Petra Durst-Benning—The Century Trilogy, starting with While the World Is Still Asleep
  • Cathy Lamb—All About Evie, Henry’s Sisters, Julia’s Chocolates, and many more!
  • Abbi Waxman—The Bookish Life of Nina Hill
  • Fiona Davis—The Dollhouse, The Glass Ocean

I could go on about this forever, but my rainy day awaits. Enjoy!

Mom


My mom has always been, and always will be, the voice in my head that keeps me on the straight and narrow, especially through times when I couldn’t see two feet in front of me, much less what’s around the bend. She has been the strongest influence on my life, though most times I’d chafe at admitting it.

Throughout her 87 years, she relied on herself to overcome life’s hurdles. Her strength of character and determination saw her through many difficult trials—from the devastating loss of a child to the gauntlet of Alzheimer’s. Yet, she remained strong. It wasn’t in her nature to give up, no matter how difficult the challenge or risky the outcome. She loved an adventure.

Not to say she is the only person who ever told me I’m wrong, but she is the only person who would always tell me when I’m wrong or making a mistake. She was honest, hardworking, and had more character and personal integrity than anyone I’ve ever known. Her love, though quiet and somewhat reserved, was always there for me. It never faltered.

Over the years, Mom and I sometimes didn’t “get along.” Maybe because we were so much alike—I can be as stubborn and determined as she could—that it caused friction. We didn’t talk a lot, finding it difficult to chit-chat. Small talk wasn’t part of our pattern. Scrabble was our thing. We could get into deep conversations over a Scrabble board. We both enjoyed prowling through junk shops and the trips to them always got us talking as well. I learned more about Mom while playing Scrabble and driving to places where we could poke around dust covered bits and pieces than I would’ve dreamed possible. I cherish every game we played and every junk hunt we made.

Mom left us slowly, day by day. She lived with my sister for many years and for that I am truly grateful. I don’t know how she managed, day in and day out, watching Mom fade away, but I know I couldn’t have coped. It was hard enough to see just when I visited. Thank you my dear sister, for all that you did to take care of Mom, for keeping her safe, for making her life better.

Blooming


What is it that we love so much about spring?

Is it the sense of rebirth? The glory of a new beginning? The birds chirping?

For me it’s getting in the dirt. I plant flowers mostly, with a veggie here and there just for the adventure.

I can’t crawl around on the ground like I used to. Well, I can get down there but I’d never manage to get back up. So, I have this neat little wagon/chair/trolley (you can find one on Amazon.com) as my planting buddy. It serves me well.

I also have a really good landscaper. He does a great job as well.

I spent 15 years living in a townhouse with very limited growing space, mostly in pots on the patio, but now I have a house again and can enjoy all the planting Spring has to offer. Not to mention Fall, which is great for planting shrubs and trees. See that pic up there? All those beautiful azaleas were planted last Fall, along with a dogwood and a redbud tree. They already bloomed this Spring and I really should have taken pictures. Darn.

Here’s the other end, in front of the porch.

I’m still working on the back yard, so no pics yet. Maybe next time.