Category Archives: Sunday Salon

Sunday Salon – Autumn and Winter

Good Sunday to you!  In the Pacific Northwest it feels like we are finally into fall and winter is coming.  When the sun is out the air is beautiful and crisp.  The leaves are red and golden and most are on the ground.  I love this time of year and also dread the days when the cloud cover is so dense it feels like we are under a deep gray blanket.

When the gray get to be too much, I drape strings of white lights around the house, put full spectrum light bulbs in my lamps, and light candles.  All this reminds me that the sun will be back.

I finished War and Peace this week.  There were times when it was a struggle and times when it was a joy.  The people reading along on the Facebook group certainly helped but  I think reading it in fits and starts added to my reading slump.  The book was always on my mind, never really allowing me to really fall into another story.  I don’t know if I will write a post on it, maybe after some time has passed.

I visited the library this week and found I’d lost control of my hold list.  Waiting for me was a stack of books, all of which I want to read right now.  Where should I start?

Where should I start?  Have you read any of these books and, if you did, what did you think of them?

Sunday Salon is a place where people who love  books and reading share their thoughts.  The Facebook group is here.


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Sunday Salon – Introducing Cassandra

Good Sunday to you and congratulations to all who made it through the 24 hour Read-A-Thon.  Cassandra has come out from under the covers and explored the house.  Turns out she is a very smart, affectionate and vocal cat.  And she likes books.  And she likes her furry black mouse.

The book, Vermeer in Bosnia by Lawrence Weschler, is a used copy I bought as a treat for myself after reading about his new book, Uncanny Valley.  Weschler has been a favorite  every since I read Mr Wilson’s Cabinet of Wonder.  I also have a copy of Everything That Rises.  It is a book I pick up when I  want to be inspired.

I was also very please to see this list  posted on the Guardian website.  Many of my favorite authors are on it. And here is an interesting video about an Impossible Hamster.   Are you following  Occupy Wall Street events?


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Sunday Salon – Better Late Than Never

Good Sunday (or Monday) as the case may be.  We’ve had a week of cloudy, cool weather and it is time for the famous Pacific Northwest rains.  We are out enjoying the sun whenever it shows itself, must grab the rays when we can.

I am slowly getting over my reading slump.  I’ve decided to finish War and Peace this month and that is going well.  I also visited the library and brought home Let Me In, a perfect book for reading as we move towards Halloween and one I will add to my R.I.P reviews.

Today Mr G and I visited the local animal shelter and brought home a 5-year-old cat named Cassandra.  After losing Kit this summer we decided to open our home to a cat and a dog and figured the cat should come first.

Cassandra is an American short hair, black with smattering of white on her chest.  Her eyes are a brilliant gold.  She is beautiful and, at present, hiding under the covers in the bedroom.  I will provide pictures as soon as she begins to relax.  Have a wonderful week!


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Sunday Salon – Reading Slump

Good Sunday to you.  The last couple of weeks have been busy with school events, parent events and just  too-many-things to do.  And since Wednesday I have been fighting off a cold.

I  seen to be in some kind of reading slump,  I pick up a book, read 30 pages or so, and put it down.  These are books I’ve had on my to-be-read list for some time. They are books others have read, reviewed and enjoyed.  I’m not sure how to get through this.

I did read and review a book I enjoyed this week, and have two short novels almost finished, but today I think I may just curl up with  a cup of tea and a mystery, hoping it will pull me in.

Sunday Salon is a place where readers share their thoughts about books and about reading.  There is a Facebook group here.


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Sunday Salon

A good Sunday to you!   After a month of glorious summer weather I feel the change in the air.  Mornings are cool, leaves are starting to turn color and fall from the trees and I am ready for the new crop of apples, winter squash and pumpkins!   I woke up to rain, a good thing for the garden and a reminder of  fall and winter in the Pacific Northwest.

It was  the first full week with the children at school.  Great fun, but we were all tired by Friday.  I had a birthday. The children made me a card and sang the Birthday song.  Birthdays are something that my family never really celebrated, so I am very  quiet about mine and always embarrassed when people make a big deal about it.  This is something my friends tell me I should get over.

As for books and reading I managed to write a couple of short reviews, so seem to be over my writing block.   I am excited to be reading books for R.I.P.  VI including two young adult novels, Miss Peregrine’s Home for Peculiar Children and White Crow.  And I continue to make my way through War and Peace.

I have neglected my own TBR stacks, the ones sitting on the floor around the bookshelves in the den.  Maybe I should just stop going to the library.

Today we plan to go out to breakfast and visit the Farmer’s Market.  What are your plans for this Sunday?  What are you planning to read this week?

Sunday Salon is a place to share your thoughts about reading, books and your life.  There is a Sunday Salon Facebook group.


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Sunday Salon – A Request

There are many different remembrances of the events of September 11, 2001.  If you only read one, I ask that it be this. Have a peaceful day.


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Sunday Salon – The Year So Far…

Good Sunday to you!  The last week was spent cleaning and reorganising the classroom and meeting with colleagues.  Long days making the environment look beautiful and filled with interesting discussions about the coming year.  Bits of time helping out in the library.  Talking to children and parents as they visit the classroom and pick out their cubbies.

I have been  evaluating my reading.  I am so glad I made the decision to severely limit my challenges this year.  It allowed for spontaneity and freedom in reading, no pressure and no quilt.  Lovely.  It also freed me up to jump into read-alongs and seasonal events like Once Upon A Time, Hop-along Read-along, Orange July and the  R.I.P. VI Challenge , which just started and run through October 31st.  And, thanks to C.B. James and the TBR Dare,  I continued to read my own books throughout the year.

As for my reading,  I gave up on one book this week, just couldn’t stay focused on it,  finished a mystery called  Breathing Out the Ghost, went back to reading War and Peace and started a book, Follow Me Down, from Red Lemonade.  More about this book and Red  Lemonade in a later post.  I’ve also been reading books about dogs,  taking in the loss of Kit and remembering there are many, many dogs (and cats) out there that need loving homes.

And I discovered an interesting blog post through Shelf Awareness.  This is bad.   I already have too many ways to add books to my TBR list. Go on, I dare you, check it out.

May just stay home and read today, or may go visit a friend who has blackberry bushes running down her alleyway.  The sun is out, the berries are ripe.  Yum.  Have a wonderful week.


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Sunday Salon – Back to School

We are  scrambling to finish a few chores before school starts.  Been in to work on the library a bit but meetings and classroom set-up start tomorrow.  Summer has been great, got to the coast, had great times with friends and did some serious basement and closet purging.

Still very sad over the loss of our beloved pup but have spent time sharing memories and stories with friends.  I want to thank all those who left kind words here last week.  We are lucky to have people around us who share a love of animals and who understand our grief.

As for books and reading I finished GaloreMonster of God and The Quantum Thief, but am having the worst time sitting down and writing about them.  I loved all three but just can’t seem to put words together, some kind of writing slump..funk..block.   The reason I started Page247 was to share my love of  books and I feel kind of foolish being stuck like this.  Has this happened to you?

On a cheerier note I read a great piece on Charles Dickens and  Dickens Camp in The New Yorker.   Here is a link to the abstract, I think it  is worth getting your hands on a copy.  I plan on starting The Book of Salt later on today, or maybe Animal’s People.  What are your reading plans?  Have a good Sunday and a great week!

Sunday Salon is a place to share your love of books and reading.  There is a Facebook group here.


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Sunday Salon – Sad Days

No book news today.  It has been a rough few days at the Blue House.

Our 13 year-old pup, Kit, was diagnosed with a tumor in April.  She had been doing surprisingly well on pain meds and appetite stimulants right up until the middle of this past week and then she quit eating.  It was clear to us that she wasn’t going to rally and that she was beginning to suffer.

Yesterday we spent the morning in the garden.  Kit dug in the dirt and rested in the shade.  Then we went for a last car ride to visit her favorite veterinarian.  She is at rest now and we are sad.  We had a wonderful 12 years together.  I miss her.

Dogs have always been a part of my life.  During those few times when I have had to be without their company I felt a great lack.  Cats have been part of my life also but their company is different, more detached  I think.   It is amazing to me how big a part animals can have in our lives, how they become part of the family, even part of us as individuals.  I am fascinated by all of the research being done on animal behavior and their history as helpmates and companions.

We are grieving now but know that this will pass.  And Kit is running in the fields across the Rainbow Bridge.


Filed under Animals, Sunday Salon

Sunday Salon – Mid-Summer

Finally,  Summer in the Pacific Northwest.   I feel very lucky that we’ve avoided the heat felt in many places around the US.  I hope all of you are staying comfortable.

Days at the beach with friends, afternoons in the garden, going through boxes of stuff,  purging all the things we haven’t used in years.  It is wonderful having time to do all of these things.  Oh, and reading, lots of reading.  Books from my own TBR pile, books I’ve put on hold at the library, books I’ve found wandering the stacks.  Everything from mysteries to essays to books on the Man Booker Prize long list.  If you’ve been keeping and eye on the Booker what are your thoughts about the list?  About literary prizes in general?

My reading is great but at the moment  I’m having a hard time writing reviews.  I’m not trying to write about every book and the reviews I am writing are brief and not very focused.  I think it’s because I want to spend less time at the computer.

Right now I am finishing up Pico Iyer’s The Open Road: The Global Journey of the Fourteenth Dalai Lama and loving it.

     I often felt that the heart and soul, quite literally, of the Dalai Lama’s life existed precisely in the parts that most of us couldn’t see.  “The truth,” as Meister Eckhart put it, “is that the more ourselves we are, the less of a self is in us.”  Like the most impressive experts in any field, the Dalai Lama tempted us to forget that he had studies for eighteen years and faced an oral examination by thirty scholars of logic, thirty-five doctors of metaphysics, and thirty-five experts on the Noble Path; indeed, his warmth and everyday humanity meant that many of us spoke to him as if he were truly one of us – no one asks the pope whether he has dreams of women or what makes him angry.  Yet the fact remains that, like every Tibetan  Buddhist monk, he was bound by more than 253 different vows.  From page 150.

This is  a wonderful book about a man who is spiritually and politically exploring the possibilities of human potential and sharing his knowledge with the world.

And you, what are you reading and what are your plans for this day?  For this week?

Sunday Salon is a place to share your love of reading.  If you are on Facebook you can join us here.


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