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jessibud2 - Late to the Party... #5

This is a continuation of the topic jessibud2 - Late to the Party... #4.

75 Books Challenge for 2017

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Edited: Dec 28, 2017, 4:18pm Top

I guess it's time.


Nov 6, 2017, 4:10pm Top

Canadian books read:

To celebrate Canada's 150th anniversary of Confederation, I am going to make a concerted effort to read more Canadian books this year:

Nov 6, 2017, 4:20pm Top

Happy new thread Shelley my dear, hope you are having a good day dear friend, sending love and hugs.

Edited: Nov 6, 2017, 6:40pm Top

Just a bit of politics before returning to the books. A friend sent me this link and I thought it was so well done (reposting, from my last thread):


Of course, I had to google and found a few others, not all as good, but not bad:

The Tweeter (The Boxer): https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6SeKnM1lOtA&list=RD6SeKnM1lOtA

50 Ways We Can Recover: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xqLZvljA--Y&index=4&list=RD6SeKnM1lOtA

Not being American, I don't get all the references in this last one but I am sure they are good.

In other news, closer to home, my home town of Montreal has just done something truly newsworthy: they have just (yesterday) elected their first female mayor, first time in the city's 375 year history. My favourite political cartoonist, Aislin's cartoon for today shows Wonder Woman, with the face of Valerie Plante!


She is young, progressive, and apparently ran a very positive campaign (practically an extinct thing these days). It's great news.

Nov 6, 2017, 4:31pm Top

I will be heading to Montreal on Thursday for 4 days, to visit with my mum. We both have birthdays in November and though my visit won't land on either of those days, it's been years and years since we've celebrated together (she is usually in Florida at this time of year). There is a new exhibit opening there on Thursday at the Museum of Contemporary Art:


I won't be there for the concert but we plan to go to the exhibit over the weekend. It's been exactly a year since he passed away and this show will be quite an extensive tribute. On my gallery, I have some photos of the giant building wall mural I saw when I was there in August but I think there will be more in weeks and months to come.

Nov 6, 2017, 4:34pm Top

>5 jessibud2:, Hi Shelley, enjoy your trip to Montreal to see your mum my dear and enjoy the exhibit when you go to see it.

Nov 6, 2017, 4:37pm Top

>3 johnsimpson: - Thanks, John. Hope you are having a good day, too!

Nov 6, 2017, 4:39pm Top

>7 jessibud2:, We have had a goodish day my dear and are just relaxing before bed time.

Nov 6, 2017, 4:51pm Top

Yay for the new thread, the visit with your mum and the exhibit, and for the first-ever female mayor in Montreal!! : )

Nov 6, 2017, 5:09pm Top

Happy New Thread, Shelley.

Sure, you get to start a new one without worrying about some weird continuation spam. Some people have all the luck. Oh woe is me.

Your trip to Montreal to visit your mum sounds fun. I'll look forward to hearing your reactions to the Leonard Cohen exhibit. He was a special one.

Nov 6, 2017, 5:40pm Top

Happy new thread, Shelley.

>4 jessibud2: That is awsome news that Montreal elected their first female mayor!

Nov 6, 2017, 5:55pm Top

Hi Shelley and Happy New Thread!

Nov 6, 2017, 6:16pm Top

Happy new thread, Shelley and very well done for passing 1,000 posts on your threads this year.

Nov 6, 2017, 6:49pm Top

>10 jnwelch: - Hi Joe. Yes, well, you got lucky - you were the *chosen* one so you will be the expert if it happens to any of us, next time... ;-) I don't think I'd know how to start a new thread without that continuation link!

>11 FAMeulstee: - Hi Anita Yes, it really is. The former mayor was said to be arrogant and pushy. He sounded polite enough to me when I saw a video of his concession speech. But he also said he will now quit politics. If only other loud, arrogant politicians would follow suit, lol!

Nov 6, 2017, 6:51pm Top

>12 EBT1002: - Thanks, Ellen

>13 PaulCranswick: - Thanks, Paul. Ok, I am sooooo NOT a numbers person. So please explain to me how you do this? Do you count the number of posts I've posted, or the number of posts on my threads, cumulatively? My head is spinning....

Nov 6, 2017, 6:59pm Top

>15 jessibud2: The number of posts cumulatively on your thread, Shelley. I don't think I could keep up to date with each individual post the group members have made across the group. There is something on the site though that allows you to see how many posts per day you have made since you joined up.

Nov 6, 2017, 7:19pm Top

Paul, you are such a numbers and stats guy, I would be very surprised if there was something related to that that you couldn't do! :-)

(I am not so sure I really want to know how many posts I have made since joining!)

Nov 6, 2017, 7:27pm Top

>17 jessibud2: I am not so sure that I want the wife to know how many posts I have made since joining!!

Edited: Nov 6, 2017, 9:18pm Top

Happy New Thread, Shelley! I am so glad you loved Mountains Beyond Mountains. It was a big hit with me too.

Hope the week is off to a good start.

BTW- Thanks for turning me onto Leonid Afremov:

Nov 6, 2017, 10:04pm Top

>19 msf59: - Cool, Mark! This is one I hadn't seen. I am more used to seeing his street and tree scenes. But his use of colour and his distinctive style of brush strokes is just so appealing to me.

Nov 7, 2017, 12:41pm Top

>18 PaulCranswick: LOL

>19 msf59: I LOVE that painting! *trundles off to investigate Leonid Afremov*

Hi Shelley!

Nov 7, 2017, 3:15pm Top

Hi Ellen! :-)

Nov 7, 2017, 6:29pm Top

Hi Shelley and happy new thread.

Just to prove that new habits are hard to establish, I completely forgot to use my shiny new metal straw Sunday but DID use it today at lunch with a friend. It was probably because today's lunch was at a place where you get the empty cup, fill it yourself, then take lid and straw.... but if you have the straw in your purse you didn't take out Sunday, then you can use that one instead. I'll get the hang of it eventually.

Nov 7, 2017, 6:37pm Top

Happy new thread!

Nov 7, 2017, 7:12pm Top

>23 karenmarie: - Karen, lol! Good girl!

>24 drneutron: - Thanks, Jim. This is actually the most threads I've ever had since joining LT. I'll need another few lifetimes to catch up to the likes of Paul, Mark, and probably most others. :-)

Nov 7, 2017, 9:44pm Top

>25 jessibud2: Love the insights and information you share, so the more threads by you the better!

Nov 7, 2017, 9:48pm Top

>26 Berly: - Aww, thank, Kim! Now, if I could only talk less and read more, we'd be in business! :-)

Edited: Nov 7, 2017, 10:04pm Top

>26 Berly: I agree!

>27 jessibud2: And I totally understand the distraction LT can be from, you know, reading.... ;-)

Edited: Nov 7, 2017, 10:47pm Top

Tonight is a night to catch up on threads. I was hopelessly behind!

I saw your wonderful review of Mountains Beyond Mountains and it made me think of a very moving museum and stories that we learned about when we visited in Newfoundland years ago (north west peninsula). It was a museum about Grenfell, a medical doctor who first wanted to be a minister but his wife persuaded him to become a doctor so he could care (for the first time ever) for the people on the Labrador coast (early 1900's). He went up and down the coast visiting these destitute communities with his ship, The Strathcona. The pictures from this time are never to be forgotten in my mind. Those people on the coast led VERY challenging lives. Grenfell was a great hero too, like Paul Farmer. Wondering if anyone has written a book about him?

Nov 7, 2017, 11:04pm Top

*waves* Hi, Shelley...just making the rounds. Very far behind on threads.

>19 msf59: Hmmm...another new artist to get familiar with. I like what I see there.

Edited: Nov 8, 2017, 12:08pm Top

>29 mdoris: - Hi Mary. You know, Grenfell rings a bell. I don't think I've read anything about him but maybe I heard something on CBC. In any case, your link is excellent, thank you. I will begin to explore further. I will ask my friend and her husband, both of whom know a lot about Canadian history. If something has been written, they are likely to know. I'll report back if there is anything to add.

Nfld is the only province I have never been to. It's on my bucket list.

Nov 8, 2017, 12:09pm Top

>30 laytonwoman3rd: - Hi, Linda! *waves back* LT is like a long and winding road; you just never know what you are going to find on the threads! :-)

Nov 8, 2017, 12:19pm Top

That's what makes it fun!

Nov 8, 2017, 12:31pm Top

>33 Berly: - LOL! And you, my friend, are my virtual interpreter! Sort-of like a sign language interpreter only with pictures!


Thank you!

Nov 8, 2017, 12:38pm Top

: )

Nov 8, 2017, 1:32pm Top

>29 mdoris: - Hi again, Mary. I have such smart and resourceful friends! I emailed my friend about Grenfell, and she just replied, saying she learned about him in grade 5. If I did, I have no memory of that! But look what she wrote me:

We learned about him around grade 5. It was very memorable, because he had to kill and eat his dogs at one point (sled dogs). He later made a memorial to them.
What a tough life.
I believe he is SIR Wilfred.

Book on him: http://www.mqup.ca/grenfell-of-labrador-products-9780773535312.php


Of course, that is probably what would stand out for a fifth-grader! Still, I would now try to seek out the book. I bet the library would have it

Edited: Nov 8, 2017, 3:52pm Top

So this has been fun! I looked and nothing in the Van. Isl. library system about Grenfell except a Juv. non fiction (probably a school book!). Yes, you must put Nfld on your travel list. It has been near the top of travel places for us with lots of stories to tell afterwards ( moose, wind, music, wild scenery, beautiful accents (what did they say???), BIRDS, BIRDS, BIRDS, the list goes on....) We loved it and have been there twice, once on the east side and once on the west side with a trip to Labrador. There are so many stories to read too before you go and and local history that is unforgettable. A favourite was about the sealing disaster in 1914, Cassie Brown, Death on the Ice. The list is long for great Nfld books. Yes, for sure a very tough life and a long history related to that. Their loss of men during the wars was unbelievable. We have visited the WW1 Nfld cemeteries in France and Belgium and will never forget them.

Edited: Nov 8, 2017, 8:33pm Top

Mary, did you ever read Claire Mowat's The Outport People? I read it many many years ago and absolutely loved it. It was my introduction to Mummers!

Mary, you probably missed it on my last thread but I am copying here a bit from a post of a DVD I picked up to watch at the library:

...a DVD of a documentary written and produced here in Canada, called *Northwords*. CBC journalist Shelagh Rogers (host of a radio show on Canadian Literature), invited 5 authors to accompany her on a week-long trek to the Torngat Mountains National Park in northern Labrador to explore the land and the people. Each author agrees to write a short piece about their experiences by the end of the week. The authors? Joseph Boyden (author of The Orenda and Through Black Spruce), Rabindranath Maharaj (author of The Amazing Absorbing Boy and The Lagahoo's Apprentice), Noah Richler (Mordecai's son and an author in his own right), Alissa York (author of The Naturalist and Fauna) and Sarah Leavitt.

Believe it or not, I had heard of all of them except Sarah Leavitt, yet, here I was, picking up a book by her and then, seeing and hearing her in this documentary. The doc was stunning, by the way. It looks like another planet, up there in the north. "


Mary, Have you been to Torngat? I never even heard of it before seeing this DVD. There is so much in our own country to be explored!

And yes, so many great authors (and musicians and comedians!) from our eastern seaboard!

Edited: Nov 8, 2017, 8:09pm Top

Just went snooping to try and find Northwords. It was not in the library system and not on CBC but it will be on our BC Knowledge Network T.V Nov. 24 at 11 p.m . So I MUST watch it as it sounds good! I have not read The Outport People so on to the list it goes! Thank you Shelley! I have not been to Torngat but it sounds intriguing.

Nov 8, 2017, 8:10pm Top

Drats the one copy in the Van. Island library system of The Outport People is missing in action.

Nov 9, 2017, 6:39am Top

Happy November, Shelley. Happy New Thread, a little late .

Edited: Nov 14, 2017, 8:19pm Top

>40 mdoris: - Don't give up, Mary. I had a book on hold at the Toronto Library that was listed as in the system but also *missing in action*. After a couple of months, lo and behold, it was found, and I have just started reading it tonight: Entwined: Sisters and Secrets in the Silent World of Artist Judith Scott. This book first came on my radar through Kim, I believe (Berly). So far, it's really good. Heartbreaking but well-written, and I am only 30 pages into it so far.

I read another book this afternoon, as well. Another book bullet, too, this time from Ellen: On Tyranny by Timothy Snyder. Full disclosure here: I am a person who talks back. I mark passages, I even sometimes write my own checkmarks, question marks, exclamation points, even smiley faces, as well as comments in the margins (but only in books I own, honest! I would never do such a thing in books that are not mine). Anyhow, this small (approx. 5 and a half inches by 4 inches) and short (126 pages) book packs a powerful punch. And there are not many pages that DON'T now have some squiggly marginalia. Squiggly because that is the best I could do on a rapidly moving train ride this afternoon as I travelled from home to Montreal. But wow, I would say this ought to be required reading for anyone in the post-trump era, to remind us not only of what is REAL but of the lessons of history. Without directly citing my favourite Santayana quote ("Those who do not learn from history are doomed to repeat it"), Snyder spells out in Twenty Lessons, exactly why this is so.

This is a book to check back with from time to time. It's a book that should be the text book and manual for students, to prepare them for the future (both high school and university students). And, if you ask me, it's a book that ought to be read with care and caution by every politician, to (hopefully) help keep them accountable for their actions. Of course, if more citizens knew more history and heeded the signs all around them, the *text* might not be so necessary.

And the cynic in me heaves a big sigh and says that, sadly, I think those who most need to read this, probably won't....

I thought I would include a few quotes from the book but in truth, I can't decide which, as I marked so many. So, just read it. There is good advice and good common sense and worthy values on almost every page.

Nov 9, 2017, 9:57pm Top

>41 vancouverdeb: - Hi Deb!! :-)

Nov 10, 2017, 1:23am Top

On Tyranny sounds like a must-read. And I loved your honest discussion of how you interact with your books. It made my laugh and grin.

And, yes, I was probably the one who linked you up with Entwined. I hope you enjoy it as much as I did! I thought it was wonderful.

Nov 10, 2017, 7:21am Top

>44 Berly: Thanks Shelley, you hit me with a BB. I added the Dutch translation of On tyranny to mount TBR.

Edited: Nov 10, 2017, 7:32am Top

Morning, Shelley. Happy Friday. Very cold day here. Glad I am off. Really enjoying One More Warbler, although this guy is much more hardcore than I am. It is great to see so many people with this kind of passion for birds and nature in general.

Have a great weekend and I hope you get plenty of reading time in.

-Cerulean Warbler

Nov 10, 2017, 8:49am Top

>44 Berly: - I was up late reading last night, Kim. It really is good so far.

>45 FAMeulstee: - I will be interested to hear your impressions, Anita.

>46 msf59: - Hi Mark. The wind was howling here so loudly last night that I thought I was hearing sirens! There is a fine powdery dusting of snow on the ground but it won't last. The sun is shining and my mum and I have a busy weekend planned. Lecture at her library this afternoon, movie (Victoria and Abdul, with Judi Dench) tomorrow, then on Sunday, the museum to see the new exhibit about Leonard Cohen that just opened yesterday. it is exactly one year since he died and this city is in full tribute mode. There was even LC karaoke in the subway yesterday! There is also a new building wall mural that was unveiled that I have to see. It is not the 9-storey one I photographed this past summer (pics in my gallery), but this one is larger! I travel home on Monday.

You hit me with a book bullet with that one! I love books like that, and have read a few and own a few more! The juncos have arrived at my feeder. I feel a bit guilty as I took in my feeder yesterday before leaving. I didn't want to leave it out when I was away as the raccoons have been relentless about getting it off the hook, dropping it on the ground and rolling it until it is emptied of seed. They broke it a bit but I managed to fix it using a twist tie but I do want to prevent further damage. I've been taking it in at night and putting it out early in the morning and that has been fine, so I hope the birds will come back once I get home.

Nov 11, 2017, 9:32pm Top

So, here I am, in Montreal, visiting my mum, who happens to live just a few blocks from a wonderful library. Yesterday, we went to a lecture there. It was a bit boring, to be honest, but she likes the speaker who lectures there once a week on a variety of (mostly politics-related) subjects, so I went with her. But, as luck would have it, I noticed a sign that their annual used book sale was being held today and tomorrow. I grinned, my mum rolled her eyes and guess where I was this morning at 11 a.m.? I only came away with 8 books (I do have to pack them in my suitcase!) but I felt good about what I chose, interestingly, all but one, non-fiction:

Paul Robeson a Biography
Promises to Keep
Obama A Promise of Change (it's written for young adults but has a section of photos, too)
Albert Schweitzer: Reverence for Life
The Autobiography of Benjamin Franklin
The Book of Small (no touchstone appearing but it's by Canadian artist Emily Carr)
Dear Marian, Dear Hugh
The Fifth (and probably last) Morningside Papers

The first and last of these are huge and heavy tomes but all look so good to me.

Nov 12, 2017, 2:46am Top

Shelley, we have to stop meeting on Meg's thread! Just kidding!

Enjoy your time in Montreal with your mom and I hope you are keeping well - and your mom too. Ohh , an annual book sale! I check the titles via a click on the link in a minute. Kind of you to accompany your mom on to the lecture.

Nov 12, 2017, 2:48am Top

Nice collection of biographies. The one about Obama sounds interesting as does the one about Joe Biden. Enjoy!

Nov 12, 2017, 10:11am Top

I have noticed that Paul and Ellen both recently mentioned having seen the film Victoria and Abdul. I saw it yesterday, as well, and thought it was delightful and well done. However, in the opening scene, these words were printed across the screen: *Based on real events - mostly* (or something to that effect). So now, when I have a bit more computer time, I will google to try to learn where the facts end and the fiction began. There was much I did not know about, in this bit of history. And of course, Judi Dench was magnificent, as she always is.

The next film I want to see, and will, once I get home, is Loving Vincent.

Nov 12, 2017, 10:19am Top

>51 jessibud2: Yes, Shelley, Dame Judy was wonderful as Victoria but the Indian actors - both Abdul and his servant side-kick were brilliant too. I suppose that the "truth" of the story and its limitations is that it is based upon the unearthed recollections and recordings of Abdul himself.

Have a lovely Sunday.

Nov 12, 2017, 10:24am Top

In other news, pardon my sarcasm, but I just saw this pop up on my computer in the news feed:

OTTAWA — Under new regulation changes effective later this month, airline passengers will be able to carry some small knives on most flights, but baby powder will be banned.
Transport Canada says knife blades up to six centimetres — about the size of a large paper clip — will be allowed on domestic and most international flights.
Blades of any length will continue to be banned on U.S. flights while razor blades and box cutters of any size will remain prohibited on all flights.
Another change will prohibit certain powders and granular material with a volume of 350 millilitres — the size of a soda can — or more.
Prohibited materials include items such as bath salts, sea salt, baby powder, foot powder, cooking powder and sand. Baby formula, protein powder, tea and coffee will still be permitted in any quantity.
Transport Canada says the adjustments — which are effective Nov. 27 — reflect changes in the security environment and are needed to harmonize with international standards.
"These changes to screening procedures will bring Canada in line with international standards and our partner countries, while continuing to keep passengers safe," Transport Minister Marc Garneau said in a release.


Can someone please explain to me how baby powder, foot powder and sand would endanger anyone, while knives of ANY size, are considered *safe*? And how do they determine the difference in safety between, say, baby powder and protein powder?

I almost thought this was some sort of spoof or joke, but it doesn't seem to be. And if this is the logic of the industry that I am expected to trust to keep me safe, well, I am feeling less embarrassed in my dislike of flying. In fact, my refusal to fly seems more justified than ever, as time goes on...(at least in my little mind)

Good thing I did all my travelling when I was in my 20s and 30s and truly don't have wanderlust any more. All the places I still want to go (well, most), can be reached via rail or 4 wheels

Nov 12, 2017, 7:04pm Top

Since you asked, I had to find the answer, Shelley. Powders are apparently possibly used for bombs. Here is the link. http://www.rcinet.ca/en/2017/11/07/transport-canada-to-ban-large-containers-of-b...

I did just read about someone I know traveling within the USA - and citizen of the USA, having her Earl Grey Tea examined / confiscated while traveling, so I suppose protein powders etc can be scrutinized as well. I'm not sure why a very small knife is now okay, but I think it is to do with Kirpans carried by Sikhs. I suppose they must be very short and likely blunt. I dunno.


Nov 13, 2017, 2:01am Top

>48 jessibud2: Timing is everything!! LOL

Nov 13, 2017, 8:22am Top

>54 vancouverdeb: - Thanks, Deb. I will read those links when I get home, later this evening. Travel day today. 5 hour train ride so I know I will finish my current book and begin another.

>55 Berly: - Ain't that the truth? :-)

Nov 14, 2017, 5:40am Top

Hi Shelley!

Nice book haul, and glad you have some lovely train time to get some reading in.

Nov 14, 2017, 5:03pm Top

I am watching, live, the memorial service, celebrating the life of Jays (and Phillies) pitcher, Roy Halladay. Kleenex box close at hand.

This is a tough one. The man was exceptional in so may ways. 40 years is just way too young to die.

Nov 14, 2017, 9:25pm Top

Entwined: Sisters and Secrets in the Silent World of Artist Judith Scott

This is one of those stories that will stay with me for awhile. It's a story of twin sisters, one born with Down Syndrome, both *abandoned* in different ways: Judy, institutionalized at age 7, was deemed *too retarded* to educate, and moved to a series of institutions. Joyce, always feeling the loss of her missing half, grows up in the family with a distant, emotionally remote mother and often feels aimless and depressed through her formative and teenage years.

Institutionalization was considered to be the *best*, if not the only choice, back in the late 40s and 50s for children with Down Syndrome. Joyce goes on to become a nurse, a hypnotherapist and a poet, all the while trying to find a way to bring Judy back into her life. In researching the institutions where Judy has lived and requesting her records, Joyce is appalled at the conditions that Judy has endured. Finally, in their mid-30's, she succeeds in becoming Judy's legal guardian and brings her to live with her family in California. It is only then that she discovers that Judy is also deaf. Suddenly, this knowledge explains a lot to Joyce, from their 7 years together in childhood: the lack of language, Judy's childhood love of tactile comforts such as the grass and the pebbles and paper and cards she would collect. With the help of friends, Joyce learns about a place called the Creative Growth Art Center, where Judy will spend her days. After 2 years of not engaging or showing much interest in art, she suddenly discovers fibre art and her life changes forever.

There are many more layers to this heartbreaking yet hopeful story. The threads of family, loss and reunion, perseverance and determination are woven as intricately and as tightly as many of Judy's art sculptures. Her work is displayed around the world, books were written, films made about this *Outsider Art*, a term I personally had not heard before.

It's good to know that once barriers are removed, and minds open to potential, the humanity and dignity of all people can be realized. There is, of course, a long way to go for this attitude to become truly universal but I think we have come a good distance from those dark days of the 40s and 50s, when it comes to educating people with disabilities and allowing them to grow and develop, in whatever manner and pace they are able to. As a person who has taught and worked with disabled kids for many years, I can attest to this first-hand.

I really loved this book.

Nov 14, 2017, 9:57pm Top

>49 vancouverdeb: You all can meet on my thread any time!

Happy new one, Shelley. I was about a thread and a half behind and have caught up now *whew*. I was interested to see that you read Tangles. I was at a talk by Sarah Leavitt soon after she brought out the GN. She said that the graphic novel grew out of her course work as well as out of the story of her mother's illness. I find it interesting how creative students can be these days.

Nov 15, 2017, 8:45pm Top

If there are any Leonard Cohen fans, I just posted a few new pics on my gallery, from the exhibit I saw when I was in Montreal last weekend. The coolest part was the movie they showed. It was projected on 3 walls so no matter where you stood (or sat; there were large cushions in the centre of the room for those who didn't want to stand), everyone could see the same thing. The walls each showed a split screen and each section showed clips of his concerts, interviews, and just visuals, but what was neat about it was, it all spanned his career and lifetime. For example, one part would show him singing, say, *Suzanne*, when he was in his 30s, the middle section, a clip of him from a concert in his, say, 50s and then the last section, in his 70s. So interesting to not only see, but hear, his maturation. It wasn't a large exhibit but it was nicely done. Also, a new building wall mural was unveiled last week, I think on the one-year anniversary of his death. It's huge but really well done. He apparently approved the photo used.

I will be honest, I was never a big fan. I never liked his voice, and though I did like his songs, I didn't always understand all the references in them. But he kind of grows on you....

Edited: Nov 16, 2017, 2:32pm Top

I've always liked Leonard Cohen...loved listening to him sing "Suzanne" when we were in college....it was so groovy and sexy and it didn't matter that we didn't exactly "get" it all. I've always been a sucker for the deep gravelly barely-on-key male voice anyway.

Edited: Nov 15, 2017, 9:40pm Top

>62 laytonwoman3rd: - Linda, I used to class him in the same tone-deaf category as Neil Young, Bob Dylan and (I forget; I think there was one other who fit this group). I loved their music but not their voices. But in truth, there is something to that husky voice that sure is sexy!

Dance Me to the End of Love

(and isn't the violin just exquisite in this?) ^

Nov 16, 2017, 1:20am Top

I* appreciated * Leonard Cohen, more than I like or love him, but I did love" Hallelujah" by Cohen, as performed by K.D. Lang. That is so Canadian, even if K.D. Lang now lives in the USA, which is kind of baffling.

Nov 16, 2017, 2:01am Top

>59 jessibud2: I am so glad you enjoyed this book, too. I gave it a 5 just for the love.

Nov 16, 2017, 6:08am Top

>64 vancouverdeb: - For me, Deb, it's a tie between kd's cover version of Hallelujah, and Rufus Wainwright's. I love both. Have you ever heard of Choir Choir Choir? It's an organization here in Toronto that meets once a week to sing together, a cappella. The public is invited, no experience needed. After Cohen died last year, they met in a large venue to a public singing of Hallelujah:


(you might have to scroll down to the very bottom, to #1) It's quite an experience. One of these days, I am going to attend and participate in one of these events.

kd lang now lives in the States?? Who knew....

Nov 16, 2017, 6:10am Top

>65 Berly: - Me, too, Kim. I am now lending the book to a friend of mine before it's due back at the library. She is also going to tell a friend of hers, who happens to be a twin with a twin brother who has Down's Syndrome. I just can't get the story of the Scotts out of my head.

Nov 16, 2017, 2:35pm Top

>63 jessibud2: Willie Nelson, maybe? My brother and I, back in the '70's, tried to get my Dad to appreciate Willie (we didn't even bother with Dylan...we knew THAT wouldn't fly), but his response was "The man can't sing a little bit!" Nevertheless, he came around eventually. I think listening to the whole Red Headed Stranger story album might have done it. Nothing mellows me out like listening to Willie, unless it's Bach. Go figure.

Edited: Nov 16, 2017, 10:48pm Top

Damn. I just heard on the news that Al Franken is the latest in the crawling-out-of-the-woodwork stream of people who have hidden sexual assault accusations against them, from their past. And just today, I got the call from the library that his audiobook I've been waiting for, is in, and ready to be picked up. This kind of sours me to it.

>68 laytonwoman3rd: - Yes, Linda, Willie could be in that *no-voice* category. ;-p

Nov 18, 2017, 7:43am Top

I did pick up the Franken audiobook yesterday but came home with 4 others, as well, *just in case*...

Bit of a rainy but busy weekend ahead, including a meetup tomorrow with my Bookcrossing group. I have my volunteer group this afternoon, and after that, am meeting 2 friends to go see Loving Vincent. Can't wait. My out-of-town friend is in for the weekend and we will likely spend the evening playing Scrabble (maybe my Scrabble for Book Lovers version!)

Nov 18, 2017, 1:23pm Top

>61 jessibud2: I am a fan of Leonard Cohen, even went to one of his last concerts in September 2015 in Rotterdam :-)
His CD The Future was nearly pemanently in the cd-player of our car since it came out in 1992. At the moment we listen a lot to You Want It Darker.
So thanks very much for the pictures in your gallery!

Nov 18, 2017, 11:33pm Top

>71 FAMeulstee: - You're welcome, Anita. I did really enjoy the exhibit and love the mural art, as well.

This evening, I went with 2 friends to see Loving Vincent. It was stunning. As soon as we got home, we started googling because I never saw, in all the credits at the end, who performed the closing song *Starry Starry Night*. Turns out, her name is Lianne La Havas. I had never heard of her but what a voice. Her rendition is beautiful.

Then I kept googling and found a couple of really interesting clips on the making of the film:



And although I have never watched Dr. Who, my friend is a fan and found this clip, which I found quite moving:


Honestly? I want to go see the film again. It was mesmerizing. I don't know if it's even nominated (if nominations are even made yet) but for sheer creativity, it should win an Oscar. At least.

Nov 19, 2017, 1:43pm Top

Hi, Shelley. My wife and I found Loving Vincent stunning, too. What an amazing creation. We did the same thing afterwards for that final song, googling to find out the singer, Lianne La Havas.

Nov 19, 2017, 7:20pm Top

Hi Joe Hope you are feeling better.
I have always loved the Don McLean song (and his voice, too, by the way). But I think the Lianne La Havas rendition used to end this film was absolutely perfect. I would like to seek out more music by her. I really love her voice.

Nov 20, 2017, 10:07am Top

Is it just me or is LT slow this morning? It seems to be taking a rather long time to load pages, and to jump to first unread post in threads. I don't seem to be having these slowness issues anywhere else on the internet, just here, so I don't think it's my computer.....

Nov 20, 2017, 11:01am Top

>75 jessibud2: Oh, good...I mean that it isn't just me. I wondered if it was related to the new version of Firefox I just downloaded. But it does seem to be only LT.

Edited: Nov 20, 2017, 11:34am Top

LT has been slow for me, too, Shelley. I thought it must be my computer, and rebooted, but the slowness continued. You're right, now I checked and I'm not having it elsewhere.

Nov 20, 2017, 11:36am Top

LT was slow this morning!

Nov 20, 2017, 1:12pm Top

Thanks, Linda, Joe and Cyrel. Makes me smile when I can say PHEW! It isn't just me. In fact, things seem to be moving along better now. Maybe LT was just constipated... ;-)

Nov 20, 2017, 10:38pm Top

LT seems fine to me tonight. Crosses fingers. I am afraid to download the latest version of Firefox. It's all so complicated.

I'm not sure if the Giller Prize was televised or not, Shelley. I just googled to see who had won. Let me know what you think of Bellevue Square. I'm not if doppelgangers are my thing.

Yeah, maybe LT was constipated this morning. Brilliant thinking!

Nov 22, 2017, 8:38am Top

Hi Shelley!

>72 jessibud2: and etc. Earworm. Now I've got Starry Starry Night playing over and over....

Nov 22, 2017, 8:47am Top

As the year winds down, there is talk on some of the other threads about reading plans for next year. Being a rather slow reader (compared to others, though I don't really compare), keeping up with all the tempting challenges here on LT is sort of the reading version of my eyes being bigger than my stomach. I didn't do so well this year and I rather think I will just dip in and out of a few challenges as they call to me, next year. My main goal will be - as it always seems to be - to read more of what is already on the shelves in my house. This might work if I didn't keep adding to that number, but ... whatever.

I do love the planning, though. I have a couple of big baskets that I like to fill with the books I want to read first. The last several years, those would be books to satisfy whatever challenges I had committed to. However, it saddens me a bit to see that, even this late in the year, those baskets are not nearly as empty as I had hoped they would be. So maybe a re-think is in order for how I approach it all next year. Or not.

Decisiveness is not my strong suit (or a priority), now that I am retired, lol! ;-)

Nov 22, 2017, 8:49am Top

>81 karenmarie: - But it's a good earworm, isn't it? :-) Have you seen the film yet?

Nov 22, 2017, 8:55am Top

>83 jessibud2: It is a good earworm. I love his music. No, haven't seen it yet. I want to, but it will probably be out of the theaters by the time I can find it. I was just looking at the closest theater to me in Sanford NC, and here are the less-than-attractive offerings that appeal to right-wing evangelical close-minded people:

Justice League
The Wonder
Daddy's Home 2
Murder on the Orient Express (saw it Monday, it was adequate not stunning)
Thor: Ragnarok
Boo 2: A Madea Halloween

Nov 22, 2017, 9:12am Top

Just fyi, Wonder (without the *The*) is supposed to be excellent. I saw an interview the other day with Jacob Tremblay, the young actor who plays the boy. He actually visited and corresponded with and met kids from Toronto's Hospital for Sick Kids to learn about the emotional side of facial disfigurement, to be able to play this role.

I never go see those *action*, violent movies. I sit through the previews, mentally checking off what I won't be seeing any time soon, lol.

Edited: Nov 22, 2017, 9:55pm Top

>70 jessibud2: Hi Shelley! Wow, is your thread ever long! Glad you're getting to spend time with your mom. Hope she continues to do well.

I want to come and play Book Lovers' Scrabble again. That was so much fun! I think I might get a chance to see _Zoe_ this weekend...if she and Mark get a chance to stop in DC on their way back to New York after visiting his family in Virginia.

Are you interested in a book of cat stories? I think it's an anthology. It was passed around my Bookcrossing meetup, and I took it home from 6of8 because melydia did not want to read any stories with sad endings. I'll either save it for you, read it myself (some day), or put it in my Little Free Library.

I love the song Starry Starry night and would love to see Loving Vincent. My older son Josh took me to see another anime film, A Silent Voice. It was about a deaf girl so I thought I could identify with her! :) I really appreciate my son taking me to see these films because I really like them, in addition to which I can read the subtitles so I don't have to worry about closed captioning. I don't know anyone else my age going to see anime, but I've been very taken by the films and cried through two of them and was tearful with the last one.

Well, I'll be spending Thanksgiving day with one of hubby's sister so I'll be getting up early tomorrow to bake an apple pie. Mmmm! I'm getting hungry just thinking about it.

Talk to you soon!

Nov 22, 2017, 10:13pm Top

Thanks, Madeline, but I will pass on the anthology. Just put it in your LFL. Madeleine and I have a project: we are going to locate and map the LFLs in the areas of Toronto that we frequent. She was in town this past weekend and we had thought to do it then but it was raining so we will get to it another time. I have found, read and passed along some really good finds in some of these LFLs and spent a bit of time chatting with a man who has one on his lawn. I just love them.

Edited: Nov 22, 2017, 11:16pm Top

>87 jessibud2: Be sure to take pictures of them and also post the information on LT Local if it’s not yet there.

The last time _Zoe_ was here, she had me take her on a tour of as many Little Free Libraries as we could find. Such fun!

My own Little Free Library has been quite fun as far as getting to meet more of my neighbors. It gets more use in warmer weather so I’m already ready for spring! :)

Nov 23, 2017, 3:15am Top

Popping in to say Hi! I'd wish you a Happy Thanksgiving, but you already had yours, right? Happy Thursday!

Nov 23, 2017, 12:24pm Top

This is a time of year when I as a non-American ponder over what I am thankful for.

I am thankful for this group and its ability to keep me sane during topsy-turvy times.

I am thankful that you are part of this group.

I am thankful for this opportunity to say thank you.

Nov 23, 2017, 3:27pm Top

Hi Shelley, Happy Thursday my dear.

Nov 23, 2017, 4:46pm Top

>89 Berly:, >90 PaulCranswick:, >91 johnsimpson: - Thank you, Kim, Paul and John. And to you, too, though I know that Paul and John aren't having Thanksgiving at the moment, either

And yes, I am very grateful for everything and everyone that Library Thing has brought to my life. :-)

Nov 24, 2017, 6:25pm Top

>72 jessibud2: I'm so glad you did that research for me on who sang "Starry Starry Night" during the credits at the end of Vincent. I totally agree that it's a charming cover of a song that I think takes courage to cover. And I also agree that it deserves an Oscar. It's one of the best films I've seen in a long time, especially in terms of creativity.

Nov 24, 2017, 6:55pm Top

>93 EBT1002: - You're welcome. I do tend to get a bit obsessive in situations like this. I may be a low-tech gal but I do know how to Google! lol :-)

Edited: Nov 25, 2017, 9:04pm Top

Birding With Yeats by Lynn Thomson.

This was a quiet book, more a memoir about parenting, and letting go, than about birding though birding does play a central role. Lynn's son Yeats is an intelligent sensitive kid who doesn't like school but does well despite that. From a very early age, he is obsessed with birds and over the years, he and Lynn go on some wonderful birding trips, around the province of Ontario, out to the west coast of Canada and even to the Galapagos Islands. It is what bonds them and the descriptions of some of these trips, and the way raw nature can be such a vital and healing and necessary part of life, are lovely. I felt the narrative was a bit repetitive, at times, but it was balanced with some beautiful, simple passages, about the author's reflections of nature, and birds. She is introspective, too, though sometimes those parts of the book felt disjointed to me.

I will admit, I also liked this book because it takes place in Toronto, mentioning streets and landmarks I am familiar with, not least being the author's husband's bookstore, Ben McNally Books, one of Toronto's prettiest independent bookstores (and one of the few left, to be honest).

So, overall, a book about booksellers, birding and nature, and Toronto, not bad at all.

Nov 26, 2017, 9:46am Top

Deviating from books for a moment. I am listening to a really good, interesting and IMPORTANT conversation right now on CBC radio's *Sunday Edition*, on the current and ongoing sexual assault issues. A panel of men discussing this. Wow, it's a good one:


Nov 26, 2017, 10:22am Top

>95 jessibud2: I like the look of that one, Shelley.

Have a lovely Sunday.

Nov 26, 2017, 11:35am Top

>97 PaulCranswick: And you, Paul, but Monday, I guess! :-)

Edited: Nov 26, 2017, 8:19pm Top

I got together with my Toronto bud _Zoe_ today along with norabelle414, and radicarian here in downtown DC. We missed you and torontoc! We're thinking of doing another meetup in the spring. I'll write more about it on my thread later.

Nov 26, 2017, 8:34pm Top

Well, it's too late to tell you to say hi to the 3 of them for me but I'm sure you had fun.

Nov 26, 2017, 8:53pm Top

Here's the post on my thread.

Nov 26, 2017, 9:00pm Top

>101 SqueakyChu: - Thanks, Madeline. Got it.

Nov 26, 2017, 9:16pm Top

Liked the photo- tell me if you are having a meet-up in Philadelphia- I might be able to come.

Edited: Nov 26, 2017, 9:29pm Top

>103 torontoc:

I just now talked to my husband, and he agreed to drive me and Barbara to Philly! I hope we can do it, Keep it in mind. We'll make plans in early spring.

Nov 27, 2017, 7:30am Top

>104 SqueakyChu: - How far are you from Philly, Madeline? Cyrel, would you drive down or fly? I doubt I would go as I have promised myself not to go to the States until trump is gone but you never know.... I have some close friends in Philly, too.

Nov 27, 2017, 7:34am Top

I posted this on Mark's thread yesterday but thought I'd add it here, too. I was watching some youtube things yesterday and, as often (always?) happens, one thing led to another, and I stumbled upon this interview with Trevor Noah. I listened to him read his book to me earlier this year and loved it. What an articulate guy!

The interview is a bit long but when and if you have the time, it's well worth it.


Nov 27, 2017, 9:04am Top

>105 jessibud2: I would fly- my brother lives an hour away from Philadelphia so I would combine a visit with him and my sister-in-law and the meet-up

Edited: Nov 27, 2017, 12:35pm Top

>105 jessibud2: Philly is about three hours northeast of us by car. If we make the trip, we'd stay at a bed and breakfast in the Philly suburban area, I think. . We'd pick up Barbara in Catonsville, which is en route to Philly. You could always come back home with us if you also have time to visit Maryland/DC.

Trump might be in office for longer than we'd like...but I hope not!

Nov 27, 2017, 3:01pm Top

>108 SqueakyChu: - Never say never....

Nov 27, 2017, 3:53pm Top

I am weak. What else is new? I keep promising myself not to buy any more books, and especially, no more hardcovers. But today, I proved myself nothing if not consistent in managing to break my promises. Yet again. I was in the bookstore (first mistake) looking to buy myself a small present. Special occasion, that was my justification (read: excuse. As if I need one). I browsed for a bit, of course, but then, I found one I had not seen or heard about before and into my hands it went, not to come out until I got to the cash register. Yes, it's a small one. But it's hardcover. Oh well.

Courage is Contagious And Other Reasons to Be Grateful for Michelle Obama. Testimonials from several names I know (Gloria Steinem, Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, Alice Waters, Gabourey Sidibe) and plenty I don't. Foreword by Lena Dunham. I simply could not resist. It may even jump the TBR line......


Nov 27, 2017, 5:01pm Top

>110 jessibud2: Sounds like a great book!

Nov 27, 2017, 6:38pm Top

If anybody needs some flowers as the days get darker and temps drop lower, please feel free to step into my gallery. I've just uploaded some pics of my gorgeous amaryllis plants. I can't help myself. I need plants and flowers the same way I need books. And I don't think there is a better one than this one, for this time of year. Yeah, I sometimes overdo it: there was a good sale on amaryllis so I bought 3. Had to give one to a friend as there wasn't room on the kitchen counter but I kept 2. It's a sunny window and wow, do they love it. And so do I!

If they were as fragrant as they are large and beautiful, I'd be positively drunk. But they have no scent, so that's just as well.

Edited: Nov 27, 2017, 7:52pm Top

>112 jessibud2: They are amazing flowers. The one I have thrives on my neglect! I put it outside during the summer, I bring it in and don't water it until about March. Then, with only a weekly watering I get a huge, beautiful flower.

This is the one I have, but now it's only a dry bulb in a pot of dirt. It'll look better this spring. :D

Edited: Nov 28, 2017, 10:06am Top

^Downy Woodpeckers are one of our most consistent visitors.

Happy Tuesday, Shelley. Thanks for all your great visits over on my thread and the AAC. You always bring something interesting.

Edited: Nov 28, 2017, 9:26am Top

Hi Mark, I think you forgot to put something into that link code. All I see is the link code, no downies! ;-)

I had one on my feeder yesterday, and he just sat there, perched and not moving, for a good 5 minutes. I was beginning to worry when I guess his nap was over and away he went!

Aha, you fixed it! Thanks!

Nov 28, 2017, 11:42am Top

I love amaryllis! I have to pick up a pair and get them planted and by the windows. That way they bloom in January when there is nothing pretty left outside.

Edited: Nov 28, 2017, 12:14pm Top

I have to work on my bird feeding. Ever since last year when our dogwood snag fell down, and we had to discard it, I can't see our birds. They land in leafed trees! :) I need to remember to put out some suet because I miss all of my woodpeckers. Last year we had five kinds of woodpeckers. This year, I haven't fed nor seen any. I need to get back into active birding. I miss it.

*runs to refill feeder*

>114 msf59: He's a cutie, Mark!

Nov 29, 2017, 8:19am Top

Oh, I know, Shelley! We don't have bad temps, all things considered, but the short , dark days are getting to me. Lovely flowers! Say, are you going to take advantage of that expensive rink in Ottawa? Just chuckling at of the controversy surrounding the cost.


Hmm, my husband's brother lives in Ottawa. He's retired, but maybe he'd like the Zamboni job? LOL!

Nov 29, 2017, 8:37am Top

>118 vancouverdeb: - Lol! This is the first I am hearing of it!

Nov 29, 2017, 8:40am Top

>113 SqueakyChu: - Madeline, these are the exact same ones that are taking over my kitchen counter! It's insane, how huge they are!

I never bring outside plants into the house over the winter, because I am always nervous about bugs, and such. But I have tried to save the amaryllis bulbs in the garage over the summer to try again in the fall though I haven't had much success with those second tries. I wonder if I should just plant the bulbs into the ground and leave them there. I wonder, are these bulbs that squirrels like? I have totally given up on tulips, for that very reason. I don't think I could bear it if they got and ate my amaryllis, the way they did the tulips!

Edited: Nov 29, 2017, 7:11pm Top

Book coincidence? Perhaps. The other day, I bought this new book about Michelle Obama (>110 jessibud2:) because she is a person I admire and this was a new book that looked good. And I wanted to buy myself a special present.

Then, I heard on the news that she was actually in town last night, speaking to a group of women! Right here in Toronto (as was, apparently, Joe Biden and the mayor of a city (I forget which) in Virginia. Wish I could have afforded to go hear her speak. This morning, our radio guy spoke to a woman who was there and she said it was spectacular.

Edited: Nov 29, 2017, 9:00pm Top

Does anyone else subscribe to the Book Riot newsletter? This was an item in the one that just landed in my inbox:

"The Book Christmas Tree Oddity At The White House
The White House erected a Christmas tree constructed of books and it includes some…interesting picks. Melville House discussed some of the selections, which include: American Mourning, a thriller titled Tainted Evidence, and World of Golf. According to Melania Trump’s director of communications, the books were purchased for their varieties of green color tones."

Here is the full article: Christmas Oddity


Well, just what is left to be said? It becomes painfully obvious as each day goes by that the Obamas took every last brain cell and molecule of common sense with them when they left. Not to mention, oh never mind. There are just no words left for this. None.

Nov 29, 2017, 11:16pm Top

>122 jessibud2: Well, just what is left to be said? It becomes painfully obvious as each day goes by that the Obamas took every last brain cell and molecule of common sense with them when they left. Not to mention, oh never mind. There are just no words left for this. None.

Dearest Shelley, you took the words right out of my mouth. *sigh*

Too bad you didn't get to see Michelle Obama, Joe Biden, and the Virginia mayor.

Here's a great book coincidence. You know that I met up with _Zoe_ and norabelle414 this past weekend in DC. I met the two of them at a new branch of the book store, Politics and Prose. There I bought a book called The Moor's Account. Then I had to go home. The other two went to the main Politics and Prose where Nora bought a remaindered book...which turned out to be the same book that I bought earlier. We had no previous knowledge of either of us buying that book!

>120 jessibud2: I think you have to bring amaryllis bulbs inside, but I'm not sure. That's just what I've always done.

Nov 30, 2017, 1:57am Top

I think we could all use some brightening up in these dark days, Shelley. Maybe that's why there are so many Christmas lights all over the place.

Nov 30, 2017, 7:57pm Top

>120 jessibud2:

After blooming, we keep Amaryllis, still in soil, but not watered, in the basement where it stays a bit cooler than a garage.
They often come back strong as long as they get water and light again on time.

Edited: Nov 30, 2017, 8:18pm Top

>123 SqueakyChu: - That's a funny coincidence about the books, Madeline!

>116 Berly: - Kim, I have never tried to plant them outside. I always just buy them as a shot of colour at this time of year.

Nov 30, 2017, 8:18pm Top

>124 Familyhistorian: - Lol, Meg! Now, there's a clever idea!

Nov 30, 2017, 8:22pm Top

>125 m.belljackson: - Marianne, I think my garage is definitely colder than my basement and I have tried storing the bulbs, still in their pots of soil that way. I just haven't had luck so far with reviving them the following year. Are they a flower that would bloom in summer? I ask because I only ever see them in stores around Christmas. I used to buy a bulb for my classroom so the kids could watch them grow. A fast grower like amaryllis is great for kids and it brightened up the classroom, too. Then, of course, I got to take it home over the holiday break, :-)

Nov 30, 2017, 8:47pm Top

>126 jessibud2: I don't plant my amaryllis outside. I just move the pot outside in the summer so that I don't have to water it during the summertime. It just gets rained on. :) When I bring it inside, I don't water it at all until about February or March (when a bit of the green stem begins to show).

Nov 30, 2017, 8:57pm Top

>129 SqueakyChu: - That sounds opposite of the season here. Here, it grows blooms in winter and the flowers dies and finish before spring. I wonder if that a cultivated thing, sort of like forcing bulbs. But I've never seen amaryllis planted in gardens here so I don't know. I am going to ask at the plant nursery, if I can remember, when I go tomorrow. I am going to drop off empty pots to recycle. I also have to ask if I need special soil for repotting my aloe vera which is too large for its current pot and is toppling over. I have a bigger pot but I think it may need soil for succulents, which may be different than the regular generic potting soil.

Nov 30, 2017, 9:13pm Top

One of the things I like about Bookcrossing is that whenever you log onto the site, there is always a *Bookish Quote* on the sidebar. It changes every time you click on anything. I have collected several over the years and just saw this one. I like it, though I will admit I have never heard of the author of it:

"Great literature, if we read it well, opens us up to the world and makes us more sensitive to it, as if we acquired eyes that could see through things and ears that could hear smaller sounds."
Donald Hall

Nov 30, 2017, 10:09pm Top

>130 jessibud2: You're not understanding what I'm saying. The amaryllis blooms while it is still inside during very early spring. Only after the flower dies and the plant only has leaves (when the chance of frost is gone) do I move the pot outside.

Nov 30, 2017, 10:11pm Top

>131 jessibud2: I love the quotes as well. Sometimes I use the shorter ones to write on the flagstone that leads up to my Little Free Library.

Dec 1, 2017, 4:58am Top

Hi Shelley!

Husband bought me an amaryllis bulb with potting soil and pot as a present - he frequently buys things he'd like to see and I get to do the work. But I finally potted it two days ago and it seems happy so far.

I used to put the huge Christmas Cactus I inherited from my MiL outside in the summer. MiL could never get it to bloom, got frustrated and put it outside after the danger of frost in the spring so that "God could decide whether it would bloom or not." She'd bring it back in just before the first frost of fall, and that was the trick, at least for her and me, for 10 years or so. (The pot was plastic, eventually cracked away, and when I tried to re-pot it, I somehow or another killed it. Bad me.)

Dec 1, 2017, 7:50am Top

>133 SqueakyChu: - What a cool idea!

Dec 1, 2017, 7:54am Top

>134 karenmarie: - I noticed this morning that one of my 2 massive plants is starting to tilt a bit. And only one stem on each plant has bloomed so far. I need to find a stick to anchor it upright as the flowers are still lovely and not ready to be cut back yet.

he frequently buys things he'd like to see and I get to do the work That's what my mum said when we wanted a dog. We finally broke her down and though she claimed not to want a dog, he slept on her bed for the next 15 years! She didn't mind...:-)

Dec 1, 2017, 2:42pm Top

Testing. Since this morning, I can't seem to post in my own thread.

Dec 1, 2017, 2:43pm Top

Ok, it seems to be ok now. But when I try to post something I tried to post earlier, the *the site says this is a double post* error message pops up.

Edited: Dec 3, 2017, 5:50pm Top

Earlier this week, when shopping for a present for myself, I bought the book about Michelle Obama. But I very nearly bought the new book by Canadian singer Jann Arden, called Feeding My Mother. I read her earlier memoir and loved it. Jann is a very talented singer, and very funny speaker. Last year, a friend and I went to hear her perform a Christmas concert and she is just so wonderful.

This new book is about being a full-time caregiver for her mother, who has dementia. Jann writes about it in her inimitable style, with compassion and humour. And food! It's about food, too. The book is currently in hard cover so I will see if it comes out in paper soon. I may just try to get it from the library, though, because I really want to read it. It's a visually lovely book, too, with photos, recipes and more.

Dec 1, 2017, 3:40pm Top

For those non-Canadians who may not know her name, here is a clip of one of her most famous songs:


Edited: Dec 1, 2017, 7:19pm Top

In other news, tonight...

I saw this piece about a floating bookstore, in London. This is just so cool. On our news, they said that the sale of ebooks is down and the sale of real paper books is up! The owner is also writing a book about this store of his. It will only be available in paper!


How cool is this!


Dec 1, 2017, 9:14pm Top

>141 jessibud2: “reverse shoplifting”

Haha! I always used to think that’s what BookCrossing wild releases felt like!

I’m happy to see book sales (as opposed to ebook sales) climbing. I tried to read some ebooks, and that was okay, I guess. However, I didn’t get the same kind of “get cozy with a book” feeling when reading my Kindle. By the time I pick it up again, it will probably be obsolete. My real books are here to stay, and I’m back to reading them exclusively.

Dec 1, 2017, 9:34pm Top

>142 SqueakyChu: - I have never crossed to the *dark side* (e-reading). I get the convenience aspect of it for those who travel, but for me, nothing will ever replace the feel of a real book in my hands. Such a luddite, I am! ;-)

Dec 1, 2017, 11:19pm Top

>143 jessibud2: LOL! Crossing the dark side to eread!!! I admit I have a kindle, and I've read about ?? 45 books on it, but I much prefer a paper book . I need to flip back and forth between the pages, and I don't find that so easy with my kindle. It's about 10 years old. Really old!

Dec 2, 2017, 6:44am Top

Hi Shelley!

>136 jessibud2: Awww..... pets are just the best. Even with the work.

>137 jessibud2: I tried to post to a thread just about 10 minutes and it said the same thing - duplicate post. I even cut the message out, went back to talk, re-entered the thread, pasted the message, and it still said duplicate post. Finally, I changed one word in it and it took it. Timing or not liking the word 'frabjous" for some strange reason? Only the LT gods know for sure!

>144 vancouverdeb: 10 year old Kindle. My, my. I've begun liking Kindle for heavy chunkster books because of some carpal tunnel and arthritis issues in my hands. I still prefer a "real" book, only reading 5-10% of books on Kindle.

Dec 2, 2017, 6:55am Top

>145 karenmarie: - Karen, please post the issue that just happened over on this thread I opened yesterday. Someone else is also having the problem and the powers that be are on it. Or at least, aware:


Dec 2, 2017, 7:02am Top

Morning, Shelley. Happy Saturday. I hope you have an R & R weekend planned.

Dec 2, 2017, 7:41am Top

Hi Mark. Actually, it's a busy weekend ahead. I will be going to my library's annual book sale. Believe it or not, I haven't ever been to one here in Toronto! I *know* I shouldn't go, because, honestly, I don't *need* any more books, but heck, since when did that ever matter?

That will be in the morning, then this afternoon, I have my volunteer group. Tomorrow, I'll be heading northwest with a couple of friends to our annual Girls Christmas Get-together. Always a fun day.

I hope you have a good one!

Dec 2, 2017, 7:48am Top

Done! Posted a message on the bug thread.

Good luck finding some fantastic books. Needing books is not a requirement. *smile*

And have fun at your Girls Christmas Get-together.

Dec 2, 2017, 10:23am Top

>143 jessibud2: I originally tried the ebook because my daughter got a new Kindle so I "inherited" her old one. I was reluctant to take it, but she said I would like it better than I thought I would. I liked it for a while, but then it grew old because I thought I was missing too many things from real books. Often diagrams and pictures were missing. Book Covers were not there in detail and in color. Author information was missing. I couldn't easily flip back and forth between pages to see or reread something I missed. At some point I stopped reading ebooks, but I don't remember when. It's not that I didn't like them. It was just that I liked real books better.

What was nice about the ebooks, however, was the ease with which I could order brand new books from the library. I could get bestsellers hot off the press with a few simple mouse clicks. I have too many other real books to read, though, to even remember that's what I liked.

Dec 2, 2017, 6:13pm Top

I rarely turn on the CNN channel but I did so this evening to see if I could get some more clarity on the circus unfolding south of my border.

Well, the best I got out of watching so far, was a commercial break, telling me that at 7 pm, there is an interview program on, and tonight, the guest being interviewed will be Tom Hanks! I love that guy, so you can be sure I will be tuned in.

During the news segments, I did hear some comparisons to Watergate.

Edited: Dec 2, 2017, 6:32pm Top

>151 jessibud2: You are so lucky not to have our news. It keeps getting worse and worse. I am a nervous wreck over what’s happening in our country and how Jose and I will be affected by everything - health insurance, tax bill, Social Security. I’ll try to keep the negativity off of your thread because I come here to be happy. What’s going on here is much, much worse than Watergate. I feel as if the corrupt billionaires in power are holding me personally hostage. I am scared for the future. No satire is funny to me any more.

Enjoy the interview with Tom Hanks. I’m enjoying reading this evening. I seem to need to take more notes as I read. Do you (or others) do this, or is it only me who is reading books with a gazillion characters, foreign untranslated words, and famous people and places I don’t know?! :)

Dec 2, 2017, 6:56pm Top

>152 SqueakyChu: - I'm sorry, Madeline. I don't want to add to your concerns, and I certainly don't mean to belittle or make fun of them. We are equally concerned up here, about what is going on down there, believe me.

As for books, I don't take notes but when I read such types of books, I am always grateful for those family trees or timeline type of graphics or maps at the beginning of the book, and I find myself referring to those very often. I do, however, talk back to my books (only books I own, that is) by marking passages, underlining or even sometimes, marking comments in the margins!

I am currently reading a slim volume about amazing Canadian women, mostly those involved in the suffrage movement in the 1800s and early 1900s. I had heard of a few of them but there are plenty I knew nothing about. Why isn't this taught in our schools?? It makes me shake my head that they were fighting for basic human rights and some of what they were asking, is still being fought for today! For example, equal pay for equal work. We have certainly come a huge way but clearly, the work is not yet done.

Ok, off to watch Tom! :-)

Edited: Dec 2, 2017, 8:48pm Top

>153 jessibud2: Oh, I love margin notes, but I usually don’t do them because I don’t save most books I’ve read. I do write down quotes and save them either here on LT or on my personal computer. I do margin notes (lots of them - with ratings, too!) in cookbooks. :)

And for today’s coincidence, I just now saw this in the novel I’m currently reading:

“Whenever I’m reading, I mark words I don’t know, copy them down, and look them up the next time I’m near a dictionary.” (Harry Radcliffe in Outside the Dog Museum by Jonathan Carroll.

It was like the answer to my own question. Haha! Even protagonists in novels do it!!

We have to keep fighting for what is right because, if we don’t, it will disappear. Access for voters is a big deal in our current political climate. Voter suppression is a relevant issue. For both parties, the fire has been lit to find and register as many eligible voters as we can.


Yesterday, I accepted a campaign lawn sign from a progressive Democratic candidate who was canvassing in our neighborhood. I set up his sign and followed his Facebook page only to then discover that the elections for county council are not until June, 2018. I brought the cardboard sign inside to overwinter until the elections are somewhat closer. :)

Dec 3, 2017, 9:37am Top

Well, I did it! I have reached 75, the magic number. I guess this makes me an *official* 75er! :-)

I am not a fast reader at all and this is a first for me, and to be honest, I probably reached it only because I snuck a few slim volumes in there, but that's ok. They are books, I read them, and they count! Only 2 more to go to reach my second goal for this year, my Canadian reads. Still a few good weeks left in the year so I will reach it!

Dec 3, 2017, 9:42am Top

Congratulations, Shelley! Small volumes work - I'm shamelessly looking for small volumes acquired before 1/1/17 to satisfy both my 100-book goal here and 40 ROOT (Read Our Own Tomes) books in that group.

Dec 3, 2017, 10:08am Top


You always were an official 75er - it is only a number after all and you have lit up the threads so often by your presence this year. xx

Dec 3, 2017, 2:40pm Top

>155 jessibud2:


And a question - were you the person who mentioned BOOK RIOT?

Today's offer is a drawing for Free copies of The Hate U Give!

Dec 3, 2017, 2:41pm Top

Congratulations Shelley my dear on reaching 75 books. Hope you are having a really good weekend dear friend, sending love and hugs.

Dec 3, 2017, 4:34pm Top

>155 jessibud2: Wow! Congratulations on reaching 75.

Dec 3, 2017, 4:54pm Top

Congratulations on reaching 75, Shelley!

Dec 3, 2017, 5:55pm Top

Thanks, Karen, Paul, Marianne, John, Madeline and Joe. It feels like quite an accomplishment, for me. I keep a paper journal too, jotting down just titles and authors, and each year, I just try to beat my previous years' totals. This is the first time I have reached 75.

Yes, Marianne, I did mention Book Riot in >122 jessibud2: though I am sure I am not the only LTer who subscribes. In fact, I probably heard about it from someone here!

Dec 3, 2017, 11:02pm Top


Dec 4, 2017, 12:29am Top

>110 jessibud2: Well, it's an experience I can certainly relate to. I had a lunch meeting cancelation last Friday and I could not resist taking the time to walk to the U Bookstore. I was pretty "good" in that I only bought a copy of The Sun Also Rises for the last month of Mark's AAC but as I walked over there, I kept thinking "Ellen, you know you can't just go browse at the bookstore, you'll inevitably end up buying something..." and I just didn't try to resist.

How on Earth is it that the touchstones don't recognize The Sun Also Rises? Give me a break.

You made it to 75 with almost a month to spare? Yay! Way to go!

Dec 4, 2017, 12:30am Top

I love Book Riot.

Dec 4, 2017, 10:48am Top

Thanks Jim, and Ellen.

>165 EBT1002: - And then there is also Literary Hub, which I like even more! Truly makes me wish I were a faster reader, there are just SOOOO many good books out there, begging to be read!


Dec 4, 2017, 4:53pm Top

>166 jessibud2: there are just SOOOO many good books out there, begging to be read!

Oh. I thought they were all upstairs in my house! :)

Dec 4, 2017, 5:02pm Top

>167 SqueakyChu: - Bwahahaha! Or in MY house! :D)

Dec 4, 2017, 6:25pm Top

>168 jessibud2: I highly suspect.......both! :D

Dec 4, 2017, 6:31pm Top

^You did it, Shelley! We are so proud. Beams...

Dec 4, 2017, 6:56pm Top

>170 msf59: - Aw shucks. Thanks, Mark! :-)

Edited: Dec 4, 2017, 7:24pm Top

Champions of Women's Rights by Moushumi Chakrabarty. I picked up this slim little book at our annual literary festival, Word on the Street, last September. I honestly can't tell if it was written for young adults or if this is simply the author's style. It wasn't the best written book I've read but I did learn so much about several women who fought long and hard and devoted their lives to bettering the lot of women in Canada, in the 1800s and 1900s. There are eleven chapters, each about a different woman, some of whose names I had heard of (Nellie McClung, Emily Stowe, Charlotte Whitton) and several I had not known of. They worked tirelessly in the fields of suffrage, to get women the vote, in organizing unions, especially for women working in abominable factory conditions in the garment and other industries, in the fields of education and social work, among other areas.

One of these women was Anna Leonowens. It's odd how tidbits of reading can sometimes carry over and overlap books. Remember I had mentioned not long ago reading a book about historic events in Montreal, called Beyond the Mountain? That book made mention that Anna Leonowens had lived and was buried in my home city. It gave a bit of her background but only the famous bit. This book really went into much more of her history and how she called both Halifax and Montreal her homes in her later years. You know Anna, just maybe not her last name. She lost her husband at an early age and went with her own young children to Siam to pursue work as a nanny (governess) to the children of the King of Siam. Yep, THAT Anna, of *The King and I* (which, coincidentally, I will be seeing in my theatre series, in February!). So interesting.

Anna also worked to improve the conditions for women and children in prisons (yes, back in those days, truant children were often tossed into prisons!), as well as for female immigrants.

Dec 4, 2017, 7:54pm Top

>172 jessibud2: How interesting!

Dec 5, 2017, 8:49am Top

From today's Word a Day newsletter, the quote. Born on this day in 1901:

I don't believe in playing down to children, either in life or in motion pictures. I didn't treat my own youngsters like fragile flowers, and I think no parent should. Children are people, and they should have to reach to learn about things, to understand things, just as adults have to reach if they want to grow in mental stature. Life is composed of lights and shadows, and we would be untruthful, insincere, and saccharine if we tried to pretend there were no shadows. Most things are good, and they are the strongest things; but there are evil things too, and you are not doing a child a favor by trying to shield him from reality. -Walt Disney, entrepreneur and animator (5 Dec 1901-1966)

Edited: Dec 6, 2017, 6:45pm Top

Edited: Dec 6, 2017, 6:41pm Top

>176 SqueakyChu: Those were so great, Shelley, that I had to share all three immediately on my Facebook page. I had not seen either of those videos before. They were easy for me to understand because I was able to turn on the closed captioning for all three of them. I like the Joan Baez one the best. It seems that she has always been there for "we the people" in many a dire time.

It feels very supportive to me to think that others not in my country worry about us here and what will happen to my country in this time of evil leadership. Thanks for sharing your thoughts with me and fellow Americans. I hope and pray that you never have to endure such a government ever in your country.

Dec 6, 2017, 8:08pm Top

>176 SqueakyChu: - Me too, Madeline. And I also hope that your days of anxiety are soon over. I can't believe or imagine that he can last much longer. It boggles the mind that he has lasted this long

Edited: Dec 6, 2017, 9:44pm Top

>177 jessibud2: My guess is he will be there until after the November 2018 elections. After we flip congress and the Senate, we would have a better chance of successfully impeaching 45 and then getting him out of office. We want our democracy to work like a democracy. It is extremely frightening to watch the quick erosion of our system of checks and balances.

I honestly don’t know how Jose and others can watch so much of our news programs. I walk into the bedroom, and, if a news program is on, I just start ranting. After that tax vote, I began to feel very scared and depressed. It was the same kind of “lead in my chest” feeling I had last year after the presidential election.

On a good note, we have an excellent representative in Congress from my district here in Maryland. Look up Jamie Raskin. He was a law professor at American University (my college). He is not afraid of 45 and is a big believer in constitutional law (of course!). I had the good fortune of hearing him speak at a town hall meeting earlier this year at our synagogue (Tikvat Israel). He, like Bernie (who is now 76 years old!), feel that the silver lining of the 45 administration is the young people who are now becoming politically active. I hope we find strength in their increasing numbers.

Dec 7, 2017, 5:31am Top

Belated congratulations on reaching 75, Shelley!

Dec 7, 2017, 1:58pm Top

Wow, 75, that is wonderful. i am a slow reader too so don't think I'll ever get there but love this group so "hang out" anyway! CONGRATS!

Dec 7, 2017, 2:40pm Top

>179 FAMeulstee:, >180 mdoris: - Thanks, Anita and Mary. I never really thought I'd reach 75 in one year, either so it is as much of a surprise to me as it is a sense of accomplishment. Now, let's see if I can repeat that next year, haha

And yes, this is a great group to hang out with and I'm glad there is no *number police*! ;-)

Dec 9, 2017, 5:42pm Top

A friend sent this to me today:


After the latest fiasco in the Middle East, I am so thoroughly disgusted by trump - even more than before, if that's possible (and frankly, Netanyahu, as well, that brown-noser - that is the polite term I am using for him; I really wanted to use a more profane one) that I can barely keep my mouth shut. I am currently in Montreal again, helping my aunt to pack up her apartment in preparation for her move to a senior's place. As always, I stay at my mom's. Her husband keeps this place so hot, I practically feel sick. But the worst is the constant CNN and trump's disgusting face and voice, every time I walk into a room. I actually asked this morning that they turn it off. I am grateful that I don't have a blood pressure issue because it would be off the charts by now if I did. And I am not even American. How much longer can this really go on?? I am not a person who ever throws up. I can probably count on one hand the number of times that has happened to me in my life. But every time I see that orange pig face and hear his obnoxious voice, I feel nauseated. Seriously. Yea, sorry. I am cranky right now.

But I did get half my current book read on the train ride yesterday and hopefully will finish it over the next couple of days. I did bring 2 extra books, just in case...

Dec 9, 2017, 7:17pm Top

>182 jessibud2:

If the press is to be believed...

there is, at last count, one young man who,
leaving his home and family to protest the relocating of Jerusalem by the president of our country,
was murdered.

If this president had not made this ignorant, dangerous, and blasphemous pronouncement,
that man would still be alive.

Unintentional homicide or ???

Edited: Dec 9, 2017, 9:58pm Top

Yes, you do need to turn off that horrible 45 (or at least stay in another room). Remember how I tried to dissuade Barbara and Jose from watching the news when we were in Toronto? That's why!There is a limit to how much you can see of him. I cannot stand to look at his face so I turn off or close whatever contains it.

I have been feeling very down lately, and much has to do with what I read in the news every day...and I severely limit my input of it. My blood pressure was high in January when 45 was inaugurated. I worked on my blood pressure and now it's normal, but not thanks to the news.

I know you're not on Facebook, but I would really like to have a vomit button that I could push every time I see 45's face for a brief instant. I have never had such a visceral repulsion to the picture of a person in my life. The problem is that face seems to be everywhere.

Have a nice visit with your mom.

Today we had our first sprinkling of snow. I'm ready for spring, I am very intolerant of cold weather.

Today the Toronto soccer league beat the Seatlle (Washington, USA) league to win the MLS (Major league Soccer) final championship of the season. It's ironic. The USA is out of World Cup competition. They were mostly awful in the qualifying games. Now our national soccer league (which has a few Canadian teams) lost again to another country. To be fair, I must tell you since you don't watch the soccer games, that two very key players for Toronto (Jozy Altidore and Michael Bradley) also play on USMNT (USA men's national team). How come they couldn't win when they were playing for the USA? (Rhetorical question, of course!)

Don't even get me started on what Trump did to destabilize the situation in Israel.That was totally unnecessary and proved nothing (although there are others who disagree - even some Jewish organizations). I am truly sick over that. It's not enough that 45 has to imperil lives of people in the USA. Now he has to imperil people's lives in other countries as well.

Dec 9, 2017, 9:53pm Top

>184 SqueakyChu: - Oh, thank you for that soccer news, Madeline!! I am in Montreal at the moment so am not really paying attention or listening to news and sports. Last year, Toronto FC lost a heartbreaker in the finals and there was a lot of buzz this year for this very game. It wasn't certain that Altdore's leg (knee?) injuries would allow him to even play. He was interviewed and said he would but didn't sound very convincing. I am really happy for Toronto FC. You are right, I don't follow soccer but it's always great to hear a home town team do well, especially when they have had a good year.

I think a vomit button anywhere trump appears is the BEST idea!! ;-)

>183 m.belljackson: - You know, Marianne, that thought crossed my mind and, to take it one step further, it wouldn't even surprise me if he knows it very well, but also knows that, like every other filthy disgusting thing he has done, somehow, like Teflon, things just roll off his shoulders. What he doesn't know, though, is that if he messes with Hamas or whatever other Arab group he angers, his run of good luck might be over before he knows it. One can only hope...

Dec 9, 2017, 10:07pm Top

I watched a wonderfully nostalgic couple of hours on PBS this evening, Ed Sullivan's Classics - the music soundtrack of my growing up years. The Beatles, Stones, Doors, and other British Invasion groups, as well as rock and roll, Motown, and others from the States, all from the 60s. I remember that, if my homework was done, and my teeth brushed and I was in my pajamas, I would be allowed to stay up and watch Ed Sullivan on Sunday night (school the next day, you know!). What a trip down memory lane! My mum was chuckling, next to me on the couch, saying that she remembered thinking that their hair was so long and messy, when, looking back at that wonderful footage now, they looked positively well-groomed, in suits and ties, and their hair was almost SHORT! What a great show this was.

Dec 9, 2017, 10:16pm Top

Happy Saturday, Shelley. I hope you are enjoying the weekend. Robert Bateman is a new artist for me and I like his wildlife artwork.

Edited: Dec 10, 2017, 8:03pm Top

Hi, Mark. I actually have a ton of old Bateman wall calendars that I saved from years and years ago, not being able to throw such beauty away. I used to sometimes use the pages in my classroom and in recent years, I use the pages now to make envelopes!

Dec 10, 2017, 12:06pm Top

Wishing you a wonderful weekend, Shelley.

The Malaysian government put out a series of advertisements in the media here this weekend about the evils of corruption. One of the most blatant acts of disingenuousness and hypocrisy I have ever seen.

Dec 10, 2017, 1:07pm Top

Today's Smithsonian.com has a cool feature article on the newly discovered winding ice cave beneath Montreal.

Dec 11, 2017, 12:07am Top

Shelley, I have to agree withe Madeline and others that declaring Jerusalem the capital of Israel was the stupidest thing to do - among other stupid things Trump does daily. I am so glad that my brother that has been flying into Tel Aviv is switching to a smaller plane and will doing more domestic flights. Good timing, younger brother. He had really enjoyed seeing Israel and sent me pictures of " the old City of Jerusalem" and it's various areas. He took a bus ride out to the the Dead Sea and what not . But with all of this unrest, he starts training on a different airplane in January. I think the long distance flights were tiring him out, so that was the reason for his airplane change, but he did make it at a good time.

As for ordering from the Book Depository, I've been finding that mail is taking months to come from the UK. Maybe they are getting it to Toronto, but lazing around in the Vancouver area? An LT buddy mailed me a book from the UK in August and it did not arrive til mid - late October - and that was airmail. I ordered a book from Wordery UK which used to operate under amazon ca , and I've been waiting on that book since November 7 ! I made a note of it. So frustrating!

Dec 11, 2017, 8:35am Top

Hi Shelley!

>188 jessibud2: I used to make envelopes - I would recycle book covers (not dust jackets, but Pepperdine school-logo sheets that would fit almost any book) into envelopes. I even found one of my letters home in one of those envelopes when I was going through Mom's house this summer. Thanks for the memory!

>184 SqueakyChu: I would really like to have a vomit button that I could push every time I see 45's face for a brief instant. I have never had such a visceral repulsion to the picture of a person in my life. The problem is that face seems to be everywhere. Yup. Me, too. I don't watch TV news, but even on my news apps so many of them have a photo of the drumpf.

Dec 11, 2017, 7:57pm Top

Hey, Shelley, I was just reading on the CBC or something website that stuff gets caught up in the Vancouver Border services area. I'm not sure why it takes so long here in Vancouver and not Toronto. They just built a new facility less than a year ago? Still having trouble finding there way around? Too much stuff coming in from the East - as in China, Hong Kong etc? You've got me.

Dec 13, 2017, 12:54am Top

Belated congratulations on reaching 75 books read, Shelley. I think that we used to see a lot more of 45 on our network TV nightly news but they got tired of talking about his latest outrageous tweets etc. Now they apologize if they are going to show something which is especially egregious.

Edited: Dec 13, 2017, 3:49pm Top

I finished The Divine Ryans by Wayne Johnston, during my recent trip to Montreal. I read the entire first half of the book on the train ride there and finished the final page on the ride home. Didn't get a whole lot of reading done in between as my purpose for going was to help pack up my aunt's apartment in preparation for her moving (tomorrow!) to a seniors residence. Moving from a 3-bedroom apartment to a small one-bedroom, after years and years of not throwing things away, was quite a chore. I arrived on Friday, and worked non-stop Saturday, packing up mostly glassware. Her only son lives in Alabama and he arrived Saturday night. Together, we worked non-stop Sunday and Monday, We made several trips to a donation centre, dropping off boxes of stuff, and marking the pieces that will go with her in the big move. He is still there and his wife may be coming up to join him. He is scheduled to stay with his mom until the 19th but yesterday, she had some doctor's appointments and another today so this is just an added stress for her at this very stressful time. Her mobility is very tenuous (she uses a walker but still has a tough time) and the first big dump of snow fell yesterday, further complicating matters. He has rented a car, of course, but still. I wish I could have stayed longer to help as my mom (her sister) is really in no condition to do much other than keep her company.

That saying, getting old isn't for sissies, sure rings true. And being far away when they need my help, is not easy either. I know there are many of you who have walked this road or still do. Sigh. I guess this is our time....

Oh, the book. I almost forgot to do a little review. I love Johnston as a writer. He is a masterful storyteller. I have only read one other by him, The Colony of Unrequited Dreams and loved it. It was, in fact, the very first audiobook I ever listened to, on my very first solo road trip, to Ottawa, several years ago. But I have 4 other titles by him, waiting to be read, on my shelf. This story is told by a 9year old boy who is trying to figure out how his father died. He, his mother and 12-year old sister are now living with his father's family. I loved the layers being peeled back as the story is unveiled and some of the scenarios were laugh-out-loud hilarious. But I am a person who has never been comfortable with the constraints of devout religion (any religion) and this is a very Catholic family, with very strict adherence to the church and other *rules* etc. I was not at all comfortable or happy about the things that poor kid had to endure, in the name of the religion. The story takes place in the mid-1960s and maybe things are different these days (I honestly wouldn't know) but I more than once felt I wanted to go kidnap that kid and take him away from them, just to protect him! Nothing criminal but still... Anyhow, overall, the story was a good one, if a bit zany

Edited: Dec 13, 2017, 11:05am Top

>194 Familyhistorian: - Thanks, Meg. Make that 76, now ;-)

>193 vancouverdeb: - Well, you know Canada Post... 'nuff said. A friend of mine from Philadelphia just sent me a small parcel, expresspost. It took exactly 3 weeks, the longest parcels from her have ever taken and Phillie isn't that far from Toronto!

>190 m.belljackson: - Marianne, I have to check that out. I had not heard of that ice cave and was too preoccupied this past weekend to pay much attention to the news at all. Sounds cool. I don't know if I ever mentioned it here but one of my most favourite vacations ever was several years ago, when a friend and I went to The Ice Hotel just outside Quebec City. It was magical! Made from scratch, every December, and disassembled April 1st. We spent one overnight and a day there (we did the least expensive of the packages but it was a once-in-a-lifetime thing and worth every penny). Just magical

Dec 13, 2017, 3:45pm Top

Now that I am home again, I just popped a new audiobook into the cd player in the car. It's called Village of Secrets and wow, only half way through disc one but it's already packing a punch. It is non-fiction and apparently, well researched. It tells of the early days, in France, of the Nazis coming to power and how it slowly crept into life in France, not only in regards to Jews, but also into the lives of immigrants, communists, *freemasons* and more. It is chilling to see the parallels to what is happening today, with Muslims, and other foreigners. If this is not a case of history repeating itself, I don't know what is. Karen, feel free to repost that *Twitler* image here. I wish it could be posted on the front pages of newspapers across the world (and the States), as a warning because clearly, the world has forgotten...

Dec 13, 2017, 3:49pm Top

>197 jessibud2:, Hi Shelley, I have that on the shelf to read my dear but not sure I will get to it before year end and so it will have to wait until 2019 as my plan for next year is nothing under 500 pages.

Hope you are having a good week so far dear friend, sending love and hugs.

Dec 13, 2017, 3:51pm Top

>197 jessibud2: - Thanks, John and you too. Nothing under 500 pages?! Will that affect your number of books read or are you going to read faster? ;-) Brave man!

Dec 13, 2017, 3:55pm Top

>199 jessibud2:, I still hope to read 75 books my dear but as for being brave, more like a bit crazy sums it up I think but I do like to challenge myself.

Dec 13, 2017, 4:00pm Top

Does anyone know (Jim?) if this is possible to view decently tonight in a city filled with light pollution?


Dec 13, 2017, 4:57pm Top

>195 jessibud2: Bravo you! Such a lot of help to your aunt and mom. Can I have you as a niece or daughter, though we may be the same age! :-) Okay, let's be sisters! How cool, visiting the Ice Hotel!

Dec 13, 2017, 5:03pm Top

I am most certainly older than you, Deb! :-)

Edited: Dec 13, 2017, 8:34pm Top

Not by much, sis! I'll be 57 in January, and my husband just turned 61. Hey,I've always wanted a slightly older sister, being the eldest of 5 . It's a burden, being the eldest, I'll you! ;-)

Edited: Dec 13, 2017, 5:24pm Top

(I just turned 64. Eek. Did I just say that out loud?)

And I always wanted a sister. Period! :-) Deal!

Edited: Dec 13, 2017, 10:14pm Top

>196 jessibud2: >197 jessibud2:

Thanks for The Ice Hotel link - it looks totally fascinating and inspiring.

Good that you could be with your Mom and Aunt. Her transition is a hard one - all those memories!

Weird to see the Freemasons mentioned along with the rest of Hitler's targets >
I'm reading LADY LIBERTY as part of December's non-fiction challenge and was surprised to see how important
the Freemasons were, both in France and in the U.S., in raising funds to build her and her base and pedestal.

Dec 14, 2017, 6:51am Top

>206 m.belljackson: - Interesting. I had heard the word freemasons before, but actually looked it up when I got home, to learn exactly who they were.

Lady Liberty sounds really interesting

Edited: Dec 14, 2017, 7:26am Top

Morning, Shelley. The goldfinch have been plentiful at my finch feeder lately, although they have their dull, olive winter plumage, at the moment.

I am enjoying Wishin and Hopin. Perfect holiday listening. Thanks for the nudge.

Dec 14, 2017, 7:36am Top

>208 msf59: - I have seen a few goldfinches at my feeder in winter drab but not that many!

Mark, when you get to the end of Wishin and Hopin, listen right to the very end, after the story ends. There is something a bit unexpected and it's *good to the last drop* :-)

Dec 14, 2017, 7:50am Top

>209 jessibud2: Thanks for the heads-up on the ending on Wishin' and Hopin'. I should wrap it up tomorrow.

Dec 14, 2017, 8:43am Top

>201 jessibud2: Depends on just where you are. I suspect in a really big city like New York you'd need to be on a rooftop to be elevated above the streetlights and such. I'm not sure what the light pollution level is where you are, but if the area is more open, a big park with no lights would work. Your best shot will be around midnight to 1 AM when the shower will be directly overhead - trying to see things at lower elevation probably won't work too well. Check to see if there's a local astronomy club or college physics/astronomy department sponsoring a viewing!

Dec 14, 2017, 9:16am Top

>211 drneutron: - I live in a residential neighbourhood but still, there is usually plenty of light. I think the meteor shower was last night but before going to bed I looked out the window and it seemed rather cloudy anyhow. I probably would have not been able to stay awake anyhow. But thanks for that tip. I know there must be as they are often on the morning radio show, talking about such things. One of these days, I will manage to get to see this.

I remember, as a kid, seeing tons of stars at night, and once, a shooting star. I ran to get my dad but of course, by the time he came back out with me, it was long gone!

Dec 14, 2017, 2:35pm Top

After seeing a picture of a special cake on Joe's thread, it jogged my memory of the talent of a colleague of mine from school. I just added 4 pics to my gallery of a cake she did one Christmas. You just have to see it to believe it. I hope she doesn't sue me for sharing the pics without permission so just don't send them out to facebook or you'll probably have to visit me in jail! ;-) Promise?

Edited: Dec 14, 2017, 4:52pm Top

>207 jessibud2:

LADY LIBERTY reads with the suspense of a good novel.

And - just looked at the creative handmade book in your gallery - it has pockets!

Dec 14, 2017, 5:17pm Top

I think here in Richmond , we have too much light pollution as well. Perhaps if we drove up to Cyprus Mountain or some such thing, we'd have a chance. But that's about an hours drive, so not too likely that I / we would make it

I recall back in my twenties going driving up to Big White to ski and stay for a few days holiday, and wow, the stars were really something from that vantage point. I think that was the first time I'd been aware of how much light is around here in within the cities. That said, I'll take my city / suburban living. I do like the amenities of it and the relative safety I feel it provides.

Dec 15, 2017, 10:58am Top

I posted this yesterday on the President Obama thread but thought I'd post it here, too. I just got the weekly email newsletter from my documentary theatre about upcoming films. I ordered and printed my ticket immediately. It opens in January and in theatres and iTunes, as well:

The Final Year - Barack Obama

Even the preview clip gives me chills.

"Is there nothing that can shame you?" says one of his staff to the Russian delegation. Could be applied to the current president, too. And sadly, we know the answer to that one...

Dec 15, 2017, 11:39am Top

>214 m.belljackson: - I am definitely going to look for Lady Liberty at my library! Thanks, Marianne. And thanks for your comment about my little book. It was fun. I still love books like those. When I was still teaching, I loved those *Jolly Postman* books, with letters tucked into envelope pockets. My students did, too! :-)

Dec 15, 2017, 12:17pm Top

>217 jessibud2:

When my daughter attended the Montessori School in Mt. Horeb, Wisconsin,
we got really lucky because the parents of one of her classmates owned
The Perishable Press, a formidable producer of handmade books.

We visited the barn where the presses operated and got to see the whole process,
from the stirring of old rags to the stacking of fresh handmade papers
and the hand binding of each book.

During the year, these parents gathered funny and serious quotes
from each Montessori family, published them in a book of "Quotables,"
and every year gave each family a copy!

Because I was a potter at that time,
I traded for two books and still have Joe Napora's SNAKETRAIN/FREIGHTRAIN...with a pocket at the end!

The Mother of the classmate has since moved to Berkeley, California, where she designs and creates
her own and other people's handmade books at Quelquefois Press.

Dec 15, 2017, 1:14pm Top

>216 jessibud2: I meant to thank you for posting the Obama link on the other thread and I see now that I spaced it! Oops. Thank you!! I really want to see it.

Dec 15, 2017, 2:01pm Top

>218 m.belljackson: - How very cool, Marianne! And what a lovely thing to do, for the families. I kept a notebook, just for myself, mind you, of funny things my students said over the years. I called it *Kidisms*. I know I still have it somewhere on one of my shelves.

*Quelquefois* Press - lol!

>219 Berly: - It really looks good, doesn't it, Kim? I can't wait!

Dec 15, 2017, 2:09pm Top

Hi Shelley!

>213 jessibud2: I took cake decorating classes when my daughter was little. Fondant is the absolutely hardest to do well, and that cake is beautiful! I shudder to think how many hours she spent on it.

Dec 15, 2017, 2:35pm Top

>221 karenmarie: - Knowing Dale, she probably whipped it up in an evening, she is that talented. But that said, I honestly don't know; I never asked. It is something, though, isn't it?

Dec 15, 2017, 4:30pm Top

Oh my, Shelley, I finally got to see your friend's "Santa on the Couch" cake in your photo gallery. So good!

I'd like to post one or two on my thread? Or here? I think people would love it.

Edited: Dec 15, 2017, 4:47pm Top

>223 jnwelch: - Sure, Joe. Am I being paranoid about not wanting it to go further (ie facebook) because I don't have permission from her? I retired 2 years ago and haven't seen her since and though this is in praise for sure, I'd hate for her to find it and be angry. But honestly, she is such a talent

Should we keep it in this thread?


Dec 15, 2017, 5:17pm Top

Yeah, let's keep it in this thread, Shelley. I see the problem - you'd want her to okay it for anything more.

Here we go:

And here's what you said about it:

"A colleague of mine when I was still teaching, was one of those people who was just so talented. Everything, every craft, she attempted, turned out perfectly. She loved doing decorative cakes and…"

So great!

Edited: Dec 15, 2017, 5:26pm Top

>225 jnwelch: - Thanks, Joe! :-)

(>213 jessibud2:) ;-)

Dec 15, 2017, 6:15pm Top

The Santa Cake is like one of those creations that you see online and can't believe it is real!

Dec 15, 2017, 6:18pm Top

>225 jnwelch: I especially love the kitty and the reindeer.

Dec 16, 2017, 7:50am Top

Beautiful cake!

Dec 16, 2017, 10:47pm Top

>227 m.belljackson:, >228 karenmarie:, >229 torontoc: - Thanks. She is quite the talent, for sure. For graduation one year, she made small individual cakes for each of the graduates, incorporating an item that represented each student into the cake. I know I took pics of them but haven't found where I stored them yet. If I do, I may add a few to the gallery.

Dale wasn't a teacher in our school. Initially, she was a classroom educational assistant. But one of our principals recognized her talent and gave her a unique position. She set up a workshop in the basement of the school and became the Adaptive Technician (also known as The Toy Doctor). She adapted toys so that our students with special needs (ie, those in wheelchairs, no hand function, etc) could operate them remotely or with a push of a button. In essence, though, what she did was design and build equipment and adaptive devices so that it wasn't only toys but more functional everyday items that enriched the lives of the students and helped eliminate barriers and promote independence.

Dec 16, 2017, 11:31pm Top

Father Christmas is so good this year you could almost eat him!

Have a wonderful weekend, Shelley.

Dec 17, 2017, 8:04am Top

Morning, Shelley. Happy Sunday. We are enjoying a bit of a mild stretch of weather. I sure hope it continues.

Dec 17, 2017, 12:48pm Top

Thanks Paul and Mark. A mild(er) day here today too, but a day of household chores for me. I also have a book to finish and one more disc (of 3 episodes) of Season One of Call the Midwife to watch. I borrowed it from the library and it's due back later this week.

Also, 6 new subway stations opened in the Toronto system today and to honour them, and encourage the public to check them out (they are artistically and architecturally said to be beautiful) , all public transit is free today. I am tempted but have decided to avoid the inevitable crowds and just wait for a less busy time to do that. The pictures of them in the newspaper look great and it's the first time in 15 years that a new subway station has opened in Toronto. Last time was right near where I live.

Dec 17, 2017, 2:45pm Top

>230 jessibud2:

That was one rare principal!

Dec 17, 2017, 4:35pm Top

>234 m.belljackson: - Yes, in my 26 years at that school, that particular principal was my all-time favourite. She was really special. She had been a nurse in her previous professional for many years before deciding to go into teaching, and eventually, become a principal. She spent 3 or 4 years at our school, then moved up into admin. I think I heard that she is retiring this year.

Dec 18, 2017, 12:23pm Top

I have a question for those of you who put out outside lights at this time of year. I never have and honestly, maybe I am more paranoid and ignorant than I ought to be admitting but I am still interested in what you think. Where do you hook up your power source when using outside lights?

When I came home from Montreal last week, there were lights everywhere on my next door neighbour's side (we live in a townhouse and the houses are attached and quite close together): on the tree, grass, house, over the garage. Don't get me wrong, I don't have a problem with the lights, per se. What I do have a problem with is that, since the first year they moved in (3 years ago), he plugs them into a power bar (exactly like what you would use for a computer) and places that on the snow. I have never done lights so when I first saw it 2 years ago, I nearly freaked. I called my friend whose husband is a retired firefighter and asked if this was safe. He said absolutely not. Only then did I print out an article about power bar safety (where it says do not place near water. Something I thought would be a no-brainer). I expressed my concern about maybe an electrical fire and said maybe he could place the power bar in the garage. Last year, he did just that. I felt better. This year, there are tons more lights, and wires, and the power bar is again in the snow. I called another friend, an electrician and he suggested calling the fire marshal to come and inspect. So I did that and they came, spent a good 20 minutes looking around. I admit that I cracked open my window to try to hear what they were saying but they never tuned off the motor of the truck so I couldn't hear anything. One of them the spent about 5 minutes or more writing up something on his clipboard and then, as they were about to leave, the neighbours came home. More time spent talking, paper exchanged, then they left.

I waited a few hours then called back that non-emergency number to ask what the verdict was, if they felt it was safe, because I hadn't noticed any change on the lawn. They told me that for *privacy* reasons, they could not tell me what was said. I was a bit surprised but asked again, simply if leaving a power bar on the snow, with everything lit up was safe. The guy only cryptically told me that they would never leave an unsafe situation. I guess that means it's ok but in my own mind, I wonder. The first lady I spoke to when I first called had said there would more likely to be a power surge (failure) than a fire. I suppose, in the big picture, that would be ok. I don't normally poke my nose in other people's business but if there were to be a fire, there is no way it wouldn't affect me so I consider this to be my business.

Am I being ridiculous? I will not ask the neighbours, but if they were to approach me and ask if it was me who called, I will tell the truth about my concerns. Period.

Dec 18, 2017, 3:12pm Top

>236 jessibud2: I would be concerned too, Shelley, if it were my neighbors.
It can probably only cause power outage to their home, but I am always very cautious with electricity.

Dec 18, 2017, 3:47pm Top

Hi Shelley, hope you had a good weekend my dear and wishing you a good week ahead, sending love and hugs dear friend.

Edited: Dec 18, 2017, 7:01pm Top

>236 jessibud2: I talked to Jose about this who, interestingly enough, knows about your electricity because he saw your fuse box without breakers (...so it's a good thing we came to visit you...Haha!)

He feels that the situation sounds unsafe, but that the fire marshall made the assessment that it is safe so it probably is safe. What provoked him the most, though, was that the fire marshall would not share more information with you because you are concerned about your own personal safety.

I asked Jose what might happen. He said either a power outage in the neighbor's house or an electrical shock to someone who comes in contact with the wet power bar. The worst case scenario might be if the fuse in the neighbor's house overheats and starts a fire at the fuse box. However, that would depend on what the fuses are mounted.

Not to scare you, though, he did say to trust the fire marshall's inspection.

Edited: Dec 18, 2017, 6:56pm Top

>239 SqueakyChu: - Thanks, Madeline. And thank Jose for his input on this, too. I am thinking that I may walk into a fire station tomorrow to ask the question (and show them a few photos I took). Just as a generic question. I don't know if the fuse box in the neighbour's garage is the same as mine but I am also going to speak to my handyman and ask him to upgrade my own fuse box sooner rather than later. He has never said it was unsafe but has mentioned that it isn't *new*. I remember when I first moved in, he and I together labelled each numbered switch by him standing in the garage, and removing the fuses one at a time, while I ran around the house noting where the power was off. I have 2 copies of that list.

And yes, I have to believe what the second guy I spoke to yesterday said, that the firefighters would not leave a situation if it was unsafe. But my instincts still cringe to see a power bar on the snow. Maybe there are special *outdoor*-safe power bars for this specific situation. What do I know....

And yes, it was good that you visited, for other reasons, too! ;-)

Dec 18, 2017, 6:57pm Top

>237 FAMeulstee: - Thanks, Anita. It helps to have it confirmed that I am not being crazy about this. I will check further into it tomorrow.

>238 johnsimpson: - Hi John. Hope your week goes well, too, as the rush to the holidays closes in!

Dec 18, 2017, 7:02pm Top

>240 jessibud2: We both like your idea of your discussing the situation in person with firehouse personnel.

Dec 18, 2017, 7:35pm Top

>236 jessibud2:

Hi - no lights up here and, for those people out here who do, I wish that, in honor of the birth and all,
they would only waste electricity for an hour a night and donate the saved money to those who have a lot less.

And, I wonder how Jesus would react to the 18 million trees cut down.

Edited: Dec 18, 2017, 7:57pm Top

Well, we have lights up, but all attached to a plug in our carport, as do many people in our townhouses. No snow here and if there was, the lights are attached directly to our plug and underneath our dry carport, with my car, and recyclables.

On a personal note, the days are so short and dark ( overcast ) here, I really love having lights. However, like you, I'd be concerned with safety.

Edited: Dec 18, 2017, 10:10pm Top

>243 m.belljackson: - Hi Marianne. Oh, don't even get me started on how wasteful this family is. The husband, actually. He wastes so much water, watering his lawn, for just one example, every single day, despite our having had weeks of nearly torrential rain last June. I kept my mouth shut for a long time but finally asked him why, with so much rain, he was watering so much. His reply: What water?. His responses, when he does speak, are so inappropriate, that I sincerely believe that there is something not quite right there and I just try to avoid talking to him whenever possible. You never know what will set someone off. We all pay for water, collectively, in this condo so that aspect of it really bugs me. I have been trying for years to get the condo board to switch to individual meters for water. So far, no success.

>244 vancouverdeb: - Hi Deb. Exactly. In our back yard, we have an outlet with 2 plugs and a little cap that closes over it when not in use. I know there is also an outlet in the garage (which is in the front of the house). He used the garage last year so that's why I was surprised with his reverting back to outside connection this year. I also love the look of lights on dark nights. My only real concern in this instance is the safety, not the lights themselves.

Thanks, both of you, for your input.

Edited: Dec 19, 2017, 7:14pm Top

Courage is Contagious and other Reasons to be Grateful for Michelle Obama

This is a quick read, with 19 short essays by a wide variety of people telling how Michelle Obama came onto their radar and more specifically, the impact she had on them. Some essays were stronger than others, which isn't a surprise. From Lena Dunham, to Gloria Steinem, Alice Waters, Patton Oswalt, Jason Wu, Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie, Tracee Ellis Ross and two 9th graders, as well.

A lovely, perhaps overlooked, detail are the sketches that open each piece, illustrated by Joana Avillez. It was only when I looked at them one after the other, apart from the essays , did I realize that it was a progression, almost like those old-fashioned flip-books. The theme of them is a garden, from empty earth to seed to full fruition and full cycle. Like Michelle's organic garden. They are black and white ink (or maybe charcoal?) sketches. Just beautiful.

I did mark quite a few passages but the one I will include here is from Alice Waters, because she speaks of the garden and sums up the book well, in my opinion:

"The food from the garden became a metaphor for the values of the First Couple, from welcoming guests to helping neighbors in need. Her vision extended well beyond the boundaries of the White House plot.... Michelle Obama's White House garden was so much more important than I could have imagined. It was a living, growing representation of the bounty and generosity and diversity of the United States - and of her own large-hearted, far-seeing vision for the future of food in this country."

And because the book was compiled and published this year, a few of the essayists did mention the current administration and some comparisons were made, but they were brief, and did not darken the book, in my opinion. It remains a solid tribute to a woman who stands head and shoulders above the current admin and yet, remains firmly *of the people*.

Dec 19, 2017, 10:56am Top

>246 jessibud2: That book sounds wonderful, but, reading it now would only make me sad. I'm really trying to get out of that dark funk.

Jose is reading a book by Chimamanda Ngozi Adichie called Americanah. This is the second of this author's work that he has read. He is very impressed by her writing, so much that I want to save this book to read myself later.

Edited: Dec 19, 2017, 9:27pm Top

Following your concerns about the outdoors power and lighting overload and safety. There are special timers and light sensors and power bars built for outdoors that are grounded for these applications so you are probably safe and fine and can be in the "no worries' zone! But sounds like you were very wise to call in the experts.

Dec 19, 2017, 10:15pm Top

>248 mdoris: - Thanks Mary. I meant to walk into a fire station today to just ask but, although I was right across the street from one when I went grocery shopping, I completely forgot.

I do think you are probably right and I am going to believe that since the firemen came to check and spent a decent amount of time here, that they left, satisfied that we were not in any imminent danger.

Gotta have a little faith, I know. But I really wish I also had a little (a lot, if truth be told) space between me and the neighbours!

Dec 19, 2017, 11:03pm Top

>249 jessibud2:

You are right to limit contact - there is absolutely no telling what will set a person off.

Dec 20, 2017, 1:41am Top

Well, I hope you are a little reassured about the safety and can now enjoy your neighbor's lights!! The book about Michelle Obama sounds lovely. I like her so much--why can't she run for President?

Dec 20, 2017, 6:41am Top

>251 Berly: - Interesting point, Kim. In one of the essays, someone mentioned that they were happy that she won't run for office, as she can accomplish so much more as a civilian. Which is true! So much more freedom to reach people and continue to work her magic.

Dec 20, 2017, 11:49am Top

Oh yes, I agree ~~ LitHub is even better! I also agree that there are sooooo many books out there to be read and relished. It's both a joy and a frustration. I keep thinking about that retirement milestone. To read several hours every day just sounds delightful. I will, of course, do other things as well. I keep thinking I would like to volunteer for a literacy promotion thing in our area.

>246 jessibud2: Adding it to my wish list. I adore Michelle Obama.

Dec 22, 2017, 11:51am Top

It snowed overnight but happily I got all my errands done yesterday, so although there really isn't all that much accumulation, I don't have to go out at all if I don't want to. Toronto drivers aren't known for their winter driving skills. It's called seasonal amnesia and I just try to avoid the roads until they are clear, if I can. So, today will be a reading day, plus, I picked up Season 2 of Call the Midwife from the library yesterday. There are 3 dvd discs in this one (there were only 2 in season one) which means a few extra episodes. I have 3 weeks before it's due but I can watch a couple of those episodes today, too.

I have one more Canadian book to go to meet my own personal goal of 25 Canadian books for this year and although I am reading one right now and enjoying it (Crow Lake), I am not sure I will finish it on time. So, thanks to a little book bullet over on Mary's thread, I just placed a hold on a children's book that will easily allow me to reach my goal: Margaret Laurence's The Olden Days Coat, which looks like a delightful way to end the year.

Edited: Dec 23, 2017, 3:02pm Top

HI Shelley, Hope you get the book in time and that you enjoy it. I have had more fun reading our old Christmas stories and posting about them to my thread. There sure are some gems! Wishing you a wonderful holiday time and stay safe from those slippery Toronto drivers. (I used to be one, and I still remember learning gear shift driving and stopping on the Avenue Rd. hill, south of St. Clair, heading north......and rolling backwards.) YIKES.

Dec 23, 2017, 1:47pm Top

We purchased the Call the Midwife collection when P had her surgery. It has been fun to see the scenes that PBS cut from the original BBC versions.

Dec 23, 2017, 1:57pm Top

I just read that this Monday evening at 9 pm there is a Call the Midwife Christmas special. I watched 3 more episodes of season 2 last night

Dec 23, 2017, 5:27pm Top

Wishing you a wonderful holiday season, Shelley. I'm so glad to have made your acquaintance in 2017 and I look forward to many great discussions of books (and other topics) in the new year.

Dec 23, 2017, 5:27pm Top

>257 jessibud2: Just be sure you have your kleenex handy. :-)

Dec 23, 2017, 6:24pm Top

>258 EBT1002: - Thank you Ellen. What a sweet kitty. I echo your wishes and I look forward to 2018 together on LT. All the best to you and P and I hope you shed that cold in 2017 and leave it behind

>258 EBT1002: - Ok, I've been warned. I spent this afternoon watching part of Season 2. One dvd to go and then I will order Season 3 from the library :-)

Dec 23, 2017, 6:38pm Top

Call the Midwife is wonderful watching, Shelley! Enjoy! A mix of a sorrow with a lot of love!

Dec 23, 2017, 6:45pm Top

Hooray for the Call the Midwife Christmas special! Thanks for the reminder. We always enjoy those.

Happy Saturday, Shelley. Looking forward to the next 2 days off.

Dec 24, 2017, 7:51am Top

Hi Shelley!

Stopping by to wish you and yours all good things this holiday season.

Dec 24, 2017, 9:08am Top

Hi Shelley, wishing you a very Merry Christmas my dear and sending love and hugs dear friend from both of us.

Dec 24, 2017, 10:02am Top

Thank you Karen and John. Enjoy the holidays, you too!

Dec 24, 2017, 10:01pm Top

It is that time of year again, between Solstice and Christmas, just after Hanukkah, when our thoughts turn to wishing each other well in whatever language or image is meaningful to the recipient. So, whether I wish you Happy Solstice or Merry Christmas, know that what I really wish you, and for you, is this:

Dec 25, 2017, 12:00am Top

>266 ronincats: - Lovely image. Thank you, Roni. All the best of the holiday and new year to you, too

Dec 25, 2017, 3:28am Top

Wishing you all good things this holiday season and beyond.

Dec 25, 2017, 5:23am Top

Seasons Greetings from Philadelphia, Shelley! I look forward to following you in 2018.

Dec 25, 2017, 7:47am Top

>268 PaulCranswick: - Thank you Paul. Wishing you a happy reunion with your girls in the coming days, too!

Dec 25, 2017, 7:48am Top

>269 kidzdoc: - Gorgeous photo, Darryl! I hope things are going well with your family in Philadelphia. Good to be all together! All the best to you too!

Dec 25, 2017, 9:28am Top

Merry Christmas, Shelley!

Dec 25, 2017, 3:30pm Top

wishing a holiday and new year of peace for you and yours!

Dec 25, 2017, 3:39pm Top

>272 laytonwoman3rd:, >272 laytonwoman3rd: - Than you, Linda and Rhonda. And all the best to the both of you too

Dec 26, 2017, 8:17am Top

Is there a link to setting up threads yet for 2018?

An-ti-ci-pa-tionnnnnnnn...... ;-)

Dec 26, 2017, 9:04am Top

Merry Christmas, Shelley! I hope you enjoyed the day!

Dec 26, 2017, 9:25am Top

>275 jessibud2: Working on it this morning! 😁

Dec 26, 2017, 9:56am Top

>276 vancouverdeb: - Thanks, Deb. It was a cold one and I never left the house. We got a dump of snow the night before and it was blowing around madly. Nothing like the Maritimes (specifically, NB and NS) got but still. Enough to cozy up with a warm blanket, a warm cat and a good book!
Hope yours was a great one!

>277 drneutron: - Thank, Jim. I am hoping to actually get my act together and not be *late to the party* in 2018! :-)

Dec 26, 2017, 10:08am Top

Still a bit under construction, but here's the new group: https://www.librarything.com/groups/75booksin2018

Happing Boxing Day!

Dec 26, 2017, 1:39pm Top

Belated Holiday Wishes, aka Happy Boxing Day!!

Dec 26, 2017, 7:16pm Top

>279 drneutron: - Thanks so much, Jim. You are a master wizard and I know I am not alone in thanking you for all you do here!

>280 Berly: - Thank, Kim. And back atcha!

Dec 27, 2017, 9:20am Top

I am off to a movie: the Cannes Film Festival advertisement Awards. Actual title: *Cannes Lion International Festival of Creativity*. Our local doc cinema shows these every year at this time and I have gone to see them many times. Always brilliant, though some are truly weird!

"Every year, over 12,000 members of the global creative communications industries come together to screen the best advertisement work from around the world at the Cannes Lion International Festival of Creativity. From the hundreds of ads selected for the festival, ranging from the hilarious and off-the-wall to the touching and unique, we’re screening the best of the best in a showcase of excellence from the realm of creative communications."

I hope to get my 2018 thread started when I get home later this afternoon.

Dec 27, 2017, 3:58pm Top

That sounds like a lot of fun! I will look for your report and new thread later today. : )

Dec 27, 2017, 4:18pm Top

>282 jessibud2: That sounds like a lot of fun!

I'm going to start my 2018 thread tomorrow, which is an actual vacation day for me (as opposed to the sick days I've been taking). So I get to do whatever I want!

And thanks for the reminder about the puffer. I can use it every 4 hours and it had been almost 6 hours since I used it this morning. So I used it about 10 minutes ago and I have to say that it does seem to help with the chest congestion and coughing. Go figure.

Happy Wednesday, Shelley!

Dec 27, 2017, 7:29pm Top

Hi Kim and Ellen.

The international ads were good, for the most part. I've seen better years, though. There seemed to be more weird ones than really good ones this year. Oh well....

I will start my new thread tomorrow as I think I will just go watch Jeopardy and veg the rest of the evening. I have developed a migraine and I don't know if the extreme cold weather triggered it or just exacerbated it. But I will take my prescript (thank goodness for drugs!) and go to bed early and I will be fine.

By the way, does anyone else out there use yahoo for their email? And if so, did you also notice yet another format change this afternoon? Why oh why do they do this? Change for the sake of change is pointless and annoying and although there is always a *feedback* button, it never works. This time, instead of just tabs at the top for the various windows, there is now a huge bar with a miniature version of the windows that are open. They take up almost half my screen. And why on earth would I need to actually see a miniature version that is too small to read anyhow if the actual window is in the lower half of the screen?? It is intensely annoying and there seems nothing I can do to eliminate it.

I really hate yahoo but it seems more work than I want to do to switch to somewhere else. Grrrr

Dec 27, 2017, 7:32pm Top

Shelley--Well, not exactly the afternoon you were hoping for. Dang migraines, weird ads and Yahoo! I hope you feel better soon and enjoy your vegging. I look forward to your new thread tomorrow. : )

Dec 27, 2017, 9:11pm Top

I use Yahoo for e-mail, but not for anything else. It seems the same as always to me. Of course, I'm using it only on a PC; maybe you're talking about the phone app? I have a separate GMail account I use only on the phone, so I don't know how Yahoo mail looks there. Different accounts for different purposes, you know.

Dec 28, 2017, 8:30am Top

Well, the miracle of drugs and a good night's sleep have worked wonders. I feel like a new person this morning.

Apparently, in my brain-squeezed stupor yesterday, I must have clicked on something I shouldn't have because I managed to fix my yahoo problem myself. But seriously, yahoo does have a habit of changing things in the format without notice so I wasn't all that off base in blaming them. This time, thank goodness, it was me, not them. Whew!

I finished my 25th Canadian book yesterday which marks my having reached my goal of 25 Canadian books for this year. That's 2 goals met - a first for me! Admittedly (but without shame), it was a small one and not the first this year but heck, it's a book, I read it, and it counts! A girl has to do what a girl has to do! This one was Catharine Parr Traill: Backwoods Pioneer by Carol Martin. I am fairly sure, though there is no printed indication of this, that this volume was written for younger readers but it was still a nice and interesting overview of Parr Traill. Catharine and her sister, Susanna Moodie, were originally from England but came to Canada - one of England's *colonies* at that time - in 1832 to settle the land and raise their families. I have copies of both of their original books and intend to read them in 2018, finally! Another tidbit of info in this book that made me smile is that many of the illustrations in this one were done by CW Jefferys. There is a high school in Toronto named for him but, as with so many historically named buildings, I never really knew who he was. I thought (if I thought about it at all), that he must have been some local politician, sometime back in history. Turns out, as I learned in this book, he was famous for many historical drawings and paintings and many of them were reproduced in a 3-volume book called The Picture Gallery of Canadian History. He died in 1952. I don't know, maybe if I had been born and raised in Toronto, I'd have learned about him but at least I know now! I do like when this happens, though, learning something unexpected through reading about something else altogether!

And because I simply can't be trusted in or anywhere near bookstores, I bought another book yesterday. I was in the mall, paying my cable bill and r
it happens to be right next door to Chapters, our local big box bookstore. I saw that there were big sales on (Boxing Week sales, of course), 50%, 30, etc. Of course, the book I ended up with wasn't even on sale at all but it's the first time I saw it in paperback and I really wanted to read it, ever since I heard the authors interviewed when it was first published. It's called The Ward and is about a specific area of downtown Toronto at a specific time in the city's history and I know it is fascinating. (I bet Cyrel has read it!! ;-) Oh well, so much for sales.....

(I do have a couple of coupons that expires on Dec. 31, for Value Village, another great source for used books so I may swing by there today, on my way home from errands......)

Edited: Dec 28, 2017, 9:12am Top

Glad you're feeling better, finishing up your Canadian challenge, learning about a local personality, and, of course, buying books. The last book I bought was at my last Librarything meetup with Zoe, Mark, and Nora here in DC when we went to a new Politics and Prose bookstore. I never buy new books, but an LT meetup is a momentous reason to either trade or buy at least one book. As you probably read on another thread, both Nora and I bought the same book that day, only at different bookstores, and did so without the knowledge of this until we later read about that book on LT. The book was The Moor's Account.

Be sure to post your haul from Value Village!

Dec 28, 2017, 9:18am Top

Hi Madeline. I always think I will not buy anything but who am I kidding, right?
And I always go to meetups (bookcrossing) promising myself that I will leave more books there than I take home. And sometimes, that actually happens! Our next BC meetup will be in January, if we can thaw out by then. From all reports, this deep freeze will stick around until at least the second week of January. Crazy! Brrrr

Dec 28, 2017, 9:22am Top

Today it's 16 degrees F here, but I see it's now 0 degrees F in Toronto. Yikes! It was so nice there this summer! :D

Dec 28, 2017, 9:34am Top

>291 SqueakyChu: - Actually, it's -20C at the moment, feeling like -28C with the windchill. That's -4F, with a windchill of -18.4F. (I use the cbc weather link). At least it's sunny and I won't actually be outside. I do, of course, have heating in the car and most places are, if anything, over-heated, just as they are often over-air-conditioned in summer.

Too cold for just about anything that breathes, if you ask me!

Dec 28, 2017, 9:59am Top

>292 jessibud2: I have to go food shopping today so I have to go out shortly. We also have a holiday party to attend tonight (Barbara's cousin is the hostess, actually). She keeps her house so cold that a friend who is going with us is bringing a fleece jacket to wear indoors! :D

If I lived in Toronto, I'd never go out of doors until the spring. My babysitting will take a temporary hiatus when my granddaughter will be born in January. Then I won't have to go out to take my grandson to school in the morning. The car gets warm about the time we arrive at his school! :/

Dec 28, 2017, 9:59am Top

>288 jessibud2: Yes , I read The Ward - you should enjoy it! the authors sometimes give tours of the area in the summer- ( check the Heritage Toronto website in the spring) I know one of the authors or editors ( there are four of them).
and yes it is really cold! big frostbite warning - it is supposed to continue to be really cold until the second week of Jan.

Dec 28, 2017, 1:25pm Top

So glad you're feeling better and that you got your Yahoo formatting sorted. I almost suggested that the migraine might have been to blame, because there are days when I just have no business touching anything electronic, sharp or fragile.

Dec 28, 2017, 1:30pm Top

Happy Holidays, Shelley!

Dec 28, 2017, 5:54pm Top

Hope that you have a wonderful 2018 full of great reads!

Dec 28, 2017, 6:32pm Top

I am so glad you are enjoying Call the Midwife. Isn't it a great show? And it is remarkably consistent too. I can't remember ever being disappointed by a single episode. Enjoy, my friend.

Dec 28, 2017, 9:53pm Top

I just had to copy this article, posted by MickeyFine on someone else's thread (I forget whose). It cracked me up. But it's true!

How cold is it?

and records were broken

Bundle up, my friends.

Dec 29, 2017, 8:35am Top

> 299 very funny but true!

Dec 29, 2017, 8:58pm Top

Question from a non-LT friend to anyone out here who reads/has read Louise Penney books. Do they need to be read in order or could they be stand-alone reads. My friend has read the first one and really enjoyed it.

Thanks in advance if anyone has input

Dec 29, 2017, 10:25pm Top

Shelley, i have read the most recent 8 of the Penny books and guess I will some day have to read the earliest ones in the series but I would suggest that they would be best read in order as the stories are connected in an accumulative way time wise and plot wise. I loved the most recent one Glass Houses.

Edited: Jan 2, 1:17pm Top

>302 mdoris: - Thanks, Mary. I will relay the info to my friend. Since she has started with the first, she is probably on the right track. It sounds a bit like what I am doing with the Call The Midwife series. I borrowed season one from the library and have been binge-watching in order. Makes most sense to me that way. Almost finished up season 3 now. Those stories too, are connected in characters and time.

Dec 30, 2017, 12:37am Top

I started the Louise Penny books in the middle but for the next book I read the first one. I think that they are better read in order.

Dec 30, 2017, 5:45pm Top

Hi Shelley!

I agree with mdoris that the books should be read in order if possible. There are frequent references to previous ones and several plot lines go across books - not major plot lines, but character development.

Dec 30, 2017, 6:14pm Top

Thanks Mary, Meg and Karen. I have duly passed along the consensus to my friend. I talk about LT so much that she automatically asked me to ask my LT friends about this (knowing I am not a big mystery fan, myself)! That said, I was sad to read about Sue Grafton as I had read several in her alphabet series (in order), making it to about J or K, I think before moving on.

Dec 30, 2017, 11:11pm Top

The year is drawing to a close. Buh-bye 2017...

So Happy New Year, Shelley.

I'll be trying this reading business anew in 2018, hoping to do better both in numbers (just...just...well, uh....a half-dozen more would be satisfying) and in being more social (getting around the threads, tipping the hat, sharing a smile). See you on the other side, my friend.

Dec 30, 2017, 11:20pm Top

Thanks, Bill, and to you too. Great graphic (I feel like trump's name should be attached to that *7*...)

Dec 31, 2017, 1:46pm Top

The last three of the year for me:

Albert Schweitzer Reverence for Life - His is a name everyone knows but in truth, I really knew rather little about him, apart from the fact that he was a medical doctor and lived and worked in Africa. This little volume contains some of his writings on a variety of thoughts but, for me, I found the prose rather stilted and even awkward sometimes. I think it could have used a better translator.

The Olden Days Coat - Margaret Laurence - I have read a few of Margaret Laurence's other novels but why didn't I know she also wrote for children? Thanks to Mary, for putting this on my radar. I actually think I have seen this book in my school's library but never paid attention or noticed who the author was. Anyhow, I borrowed it from my local library the other day and really enjoyed it. It is about a 10-year old girl visiting her grandmother over Christmas. She finds an old coat in the shed, puts it on, and is transported back to the time and place, meeting her grandmother when she (grandma) was 10 years old. This time travel aspect appealed to me right away and I can actually remember looking at old photos in my own family and wondering what it would have been like to meet my own parents (and grandparents) when they were small, because, of course, to a child's mind, they couldn't possibly have ever been small! The illustrations in this book, done by Muriel Wood, were also stunning.

The Darkest Dark - Chris Hadfield - Another lovely quick read to end my year with. It's always interesting to learn how prominent people come to arrive at the place in their lives of their greatest and most satisfying achievements. I think many people fell in love with Chris Hadfield when he was commander of the ISS space station. I have read his 2 other books but this was particularly lovely, as it is written for kids, and not only tells his story, but imparts the message that fears can be conquered. The Fan brothers, Eric and Terry, bring the simple text to life. I heard Hadfield in an interview telling how pleased he was with the illustrations and how they caught every nuance, visual and facial expression, so perfectly. I also loved Chris' signature at the end of the book. I wish I could include it here but I will put it in my gallery on my profile page. His signature resembles a space shuttle. I don't think that's an accident. I smile as I wonder how long he played around with that to get it just so!.

Edited: Dec 31, 2017, 2:04pm Top

Ok, the roundup for the year. If I were to compare to other LTers, it was no great shakes. But for me, it was a really good reading year, as I surpassed all previous numbers for myself, always a goal. Here is how it broke down. I do also keep a paper and pen notebook where I write titles and authors and somehow (this happened last year too), those numbers don't exactly match my LT ticker numbers. Clearly I forgot to add some to my ticker here.

Total read - 84
Fiction - 30
Non-fiction - 51

I did not categorize the 2 volumes of poetry I wrote as I wasn't sure where they belonged.

Of those totals:

Audiobooks - 14
Canadian authors - 25

Favourites - The March Trilogy (graphic novels, John Lewis)
Born a Crime - Trevor Noah
Life Studies - Susan Vreeland
and 2 by Tracy Kidder: Strength in What Remains and Mountains Beyond Mountains

Dec 31, 2017, 3:11pm Top

Hi Shelley!

Congrats on a great reading year.

Peace, Health, and Happiness in 2018

Jan 2, 12:20pm Top

Shelley, great reviews of your last 3 books for 2017. I went right to your photo to see Hadfield's signature which I missed. Very good observing on your part. I listed his Darkest Dark as one of my top reads for 2017. I gave it to my 4 year old grandson last Jan. and he was blown away, well we both were. Must have read it a hundred times to him on our short visit. And WOW!!! 84 books. Congrats! Happy reading to you for 2018.

Edited: Jan 2, 7:10pm Top

Oopsy. I meant to post this in my new thread.

Jan 3, 5:16pm Top

I am totally impressed with your stats for Reading Year 2017.

*high five*

Group: 75 Books Challenge for 2017

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