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June 04, 2021


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Both of you look so happy.

Doug M

Your outside flowers look very pretty & full, and the inside of your house sounds much the same :^) That's such a nice picture of you two, I bet he's keeping you on your toes! Well Margaret, I hope you & Jim can get your schedules together this summer, talk about busy!


I'm sure you will find a nice little routine along the way. Your flowers are gorgeous and you and your grandson both look so happy! Enjoy the weekend. :)


Oh he is definitely adorable. I remember how exhausting it was to be with our grandson several years ago when he was little. I haven’t seen them now in a year and a half and am dying to go and see them. I do envy your having your family with you, but understand your missing John. Gosh… That reminds me of Jane Fonda/Robert Redford’s movie, Our Souls at Midnight.

Marie K

Exhausting but fun. Don't worry about me for coffee dates. I'm swamped for the end of the year and finishing up my STEM class. I would love to get together in a couple of weeks though if you're free. Dianthus are one of my favorites! :) Love the stroller selfie.


What a GREAT selfie! Oh, my. It's a keeper. What a cutie! (Both of you!) I'm glad he's snuggly for you. Quinn never really has been. (Well, except with John!) It seems from that picture that his hair has lightened quite a bit.

I LOVE that Korean dogwood. That is gorgeous!

I'm sad you haven't been able to see John. I sure hope things settle down for both of you soon so you can get together.


I find the easiest way to get time for myself in a crowded house is usually to get up really early to get that walk in.


Awww! What a great picture of you and your grandson. Looks like you are all having a good time and you will all work out a good routine. I'd enjoy them just for cooking and cleaning. Ha!
Your flowers are beautiful too.
Enjoy all your time with them.

Pam Donaldson

I feel your joy and your pain! Laura and Astrid left today and I'm very sad but also very much enjoying sitting down for more than ten seconds at a time...

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Book Club Reads

  • Perkins-Valdez, Dolen: Take My Hand

    Perkins-Valdez, Dolen: Take My Hand
    This beautifully written and intricate book is my first 5 (or 4 1/2) star read for quite a while. It was powerful and filled with fascinating and well-developed characters. I even liked the ending! Jumping between two time periods isn't my favorite style, but the author handled it masterfully. (*****)

  • Haigh, Jennifer: Mercy Street: A Novel

    Haigh, Jennifer: Mercy Street: A Novel
    4 for the writing which was excellent, and 4 for the characters who were interesting and well-developed. 2 for the non-existent plot. The ending of the book left me extremely dissatisfied. Sadly, there are no discussion questions for it which might force me to reflect on the book's messages. (***)

  • Slocumb, Brendan: The Violin Conspiracy

    Slocumb, Brendan: The Violin Conspiracy
    A solid 3 1/2 stars for me, but a disappointment in general. As a former violinist myself, I was excited about the topic. I love mysteries which was what this novel was billed as. (not much of one and very predictable) I found the writing sophomoric and rather repetitive; the topics of slavery and underrepresentation of POC in classical music were compelling though. As always, I'm hoping for an excellent discussion at BC. (***)

  • Tyler, Anne: French Braid: A novel

    Tyler, Anne: French Braid: A novel
    I can see why some might not enjoy this book (not much plot), but I liked Tyler's writing, the complexity of the characters and the storytelling. Families are like a French Braid; you can never really be free of them since "the ripples are crimped in forever." I'm hoping our BC discussion will be enlightening and personal. (***)

  • See, Lisa: The Island of Sea Women: A Novel

    See, Lisa: The Island of Sea Women: A Novel
    Although it wasn't perfect (sometimes hard to follow the timelines), this book was fascinating on a personal, historical and cultural level. I learned so much while suffering through the tragedies and celebrating the joys of the characters. I'm hoping for an insightful discussion at Book Club, as this novel deserves. (*****)

  • Whitehead, Colson: Harlem Shuffle: A Novel

    Whitehead, Colson: Harlem Shuffle: A Novel
    Extremely well-written, atmospheric and full of fascinating characters and history. Being a mystery reader, I would have preferred more plot though. If you haven't read Whitehead before, I recommend "The Nickel Boys" instead. Fortunately, the book seems like it will elicit a decent discussion. (****)

  • Klune, TJ: The House in the Cerulean Sea

    Klune, TJ: The House in the Cerulean Sea
    This book was hard to rate (***1/2): heartwarming, yet cheesy and predictable. Imaginative, but also preachy. It reads like a YA novel. There were some wonderful characters if you enjoy fantasy. I think it will be nearly impossible to discuss as a Book Club read. (***)

  • Towles, Amor: The Lincoln Highway: A Novel

    Towles, Amor: The Lincoln Highway: A Novel
    This is a exquisitely crafted book and extremely well-written. I didn't always like the way it jumped from one person to another, especially when I was very engaged in the last story. It didn't turn out the way I wanted it to, but the ending was also beautiful in its own painful way. 4 1/2 stars. (*****)

  • Wang, Qian Julie: Beautiful Country: A Memoir

    Wang, Qian Julie: Beautiful Country: A Memoir
    Although it had some fascinating and illuminating moments, this memoir of a young Chinese immigrant facing poverty and prejudice was ultimately a let down. Part of it was the writing and lack of proofreading(too many grammar mistakes) while the rest related to my confusion about whether I admired or disliked the author. She was often mean and dishonest. Much of the time I didn't find her sympathetic. (***)

  • Pooley, Clare: The Authenticity Project: A Novel

    Pooley, Clare: The Authenticity Project: A Novel
    A solid 3 1/2 stars--I didn't hate it, but I didn't love it. It felt like a beach read with a bit more depth to it. Still it was often predictable and wasn't particularly well written. (***)