Shelley (jessibud2) Will Read Anywhere, chapter 3

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Shelley (jessibud2) Will Read Anywhere, chapter 3

Editado: Sep 13, 9:51pm

I am Shelley, a retired special education teacher, living in Toronto, Canada with my 2 newest challenges, um, rescue cats, Theo the Bully Boy and Owen, who is slowing coming out of his shell.

I read fiction (especially historical fiction), a lot of non-fiction (bio/memoir, science, history, nature, and whatever else strikes my fancy). I have enjoyed several GNs (both of the fiction and non-fiction variety) and I also love illustrated children's books. Maybe I was a frustrated artist in a previous life. I try to follow the NF challenge each year but I am very much a mood reader so it doesn't always work out as planned for me.

A long stressful year continues and as my province enters stage 3 of reopening (as of yesterday), I continue to follow cautiously. Very cautiously, skeptic that I am. But I am fully vaccinated and so are the people in my life who matter most, so there is that. But I won't be ditching my masks any time soon... ;-)

Reading continues in fits and starts and though I may not reach 75 this year, who knows, maybe I will.

Current tally: 57 (trackers haven't worked for me this year so this is where I will keep score)

Currently reading:

The Words I Never Wrote

Editado: Jul 17, 9:53am

Jul 17, 9:50am

one more

Jul 17, 10:00am

New phone/computer issues this morning. Still haven't managed to download photos from phone to computer. Will deal with them later and add another pic when (if) I succeed.

Otherwise, open for business....

Jul 17, 10:18am

>2 jessibud2: I like the benches Shelley. Hope you get your tech sorted soon.

Jul 17, 11:43am

Hi Shelley, and happy new thread!

From your previous thread, I'm glad that your visit went so well and that the kitties did well at home and boarded.

Boo hiss to the newest technological problems.

Editado: Jul 17, 5:58pm

Happy new thread Shelley. Love those book benches in >2 jessibud2:!

Jul 17, 8:57pm

Happy new thread, Shelley. It was good to see that your visit to Montreal went well.

Jul 18, 8:22am

Happy Sunday, Shelley. Happy New thread. How are Bully Boy and Owen doing? Do you have your feeders still set up and if so, any activity?

Jul 18, 9:52am

Happy new thread, Shelley!

>2 jessibud2: What lovely benches! I would like to put those in my garden :-)

Jul 18, 2:30pm

New-thread orisons, Shelley!

Jul 18, 9:12pm

Happy new thread, Shelley.

>2 jessibud2: Like the look of the benches although I'm not so sure that they would be comfortable.

Jul 18, 10:17pm

>2 jessibud2: They don't leave those out in the rain, do they? I don't want any of my books to get wet.

Jul 19, 12:19am

Hi Shelley. Stopping by to say hi.

Jul 19, 9:07am

Happy new one!

Jul 21, 8:28am

Hi Caroline, Karen, Mary, Meg, Mark, Anita, Richard, Paul, Bill, Linda and Jim.

I agree, those benches are cool to look at, decoratively speaking, but I'd probably slide right off if I tried to sit on them! And my feet probably wouldn't reach the ground!

RL again. I am heading back to Montreal on Sunday for a shorter time, taking my mother to an appointment on Tuesday (possible biopsy but maybe not; the specialist will decide when we are there), then home again on Wed. And yes, Theo will return to the vet's. He is mellowing but not enough yet to leave him here with Owen when I am gone overnight. The attacks are far fewer but in the week I've been home, there have been a couple. Owen is definitely a calmer boy, though, and that is lovely. He lets me brush him a lot and even stroke his belly. Still can't pick him up yet, though...

Mark, to answer your question, no, my feeder is not out. I am really hoping that I can put it out in the fall, and especially in the winter. But the pigeons somehow seem to know the minute I try to put it out and they return. And it's not just me who finds them annoying. Our city has just this week tabled a bylaw that would ban feeding pigeons (yes, some people do that, deliberately!) in every corner of the city, because they (the pigeons, but I guess, also the people, hehe) are such nuisances, and filthy too. I wish they would try to cull them, if only by taking the eggs or something. Sort of like what was once done to try to keep the goose population down. Mind you, I am not so sure it worked for the geese...

After a library book lull, I now have 3 at home and another on the way. Feast or famine....

Jul 25, 4:32pm

Hi Shelley my dear, Happy new thread dear friend.

Jul 26, 7:31pm

Hey there Shelley...are you home yet? Did all go well with mother-appointmenting?

Hoping all the news is good....

Jul 28, 9:15pm

>17 johnsimpson: - Hi, John. Hope things are settling down for you these days. I know there have been some rough patches on the home front. Hugs...

>18 richardderus: - Hi, Richard. Thanks for remembering and asking. I got home late this afternoon and am truly exhausted. The appointment went as well as could be expected. A minimal of waiting around, which was the best part. The doctor did take some skin samples for a biopsy and we should have an answer of sorts, in a week to 10 days, he said. I also hired someone privately to help my mother with her evening bedtime preparation (long story, don't ask). Mainly to ensure that she gets herself ready for bed safely and with minimal risk of falling by trying to do everything by herself, instead of waiting for the staff to arrive to help her. She is a stubborn one, my mum, and when she wants to go to bed, she waits on no one. I had some words with the managers of her place (via email, on a phone call and the other day, in person) because one of them was digging in her heels about not being flexible in the schedule re helping her at bedtime (I asked if they could come 15 to 20 minutes earlier than they have been arriving and she said no). So I hired someone privately and she started tonight. So far, my mum is pleased, she likes her (the woman came to meet us both yesterday) so hopefully, this arrangement will work out. I was sorely disappointed (and angry though I did keep my cool and maintained a - more or less - calm demeanor when talking to the managers). Up to this point in time, I have had nothing but praise for the care my mum receives at her place but this, to me, seemed unnecessarily mean and inflexible. I honestly don't want to have to move my mum anywhere else unless and until there is no alternative. She loves it there, it's home to her now and it is familiar. Moving her is the last thing I want and if the manager can't be flexible, I will find my own solutions. But damn, it pisses me off.

Meantime, my boys were great. Owen seems to love having his *me time* when I go away. The cat sitter, Jacqueline, loves him and he must love her too because he is calm and playful and happy when I get home. And Hurricane Theo spent his time entertaining the entire vet clinic staff. They all came to say good bye to him when I picked him up. He is apparently a big chatterbox.... ;-) At least no worries there...

I took 3 books with me, all of which I was in the middle of. I finished one yesterday, and will finish the second tonight or tomorrow, if I fall asleep, but I have around 40 pages left, maybe less. I did pick up another today from the library and though that is not due back for 3 weeks, I may start it right away as it's one I really am eager to dive into:
The Three Mothers, about the mothers of Martin Luther King, Jr, Malcolm X, and James Baldwin.

In other news, I learned today that Ken Burns' next documentary, about Muhammed Ali, will air on PBS in mid-September:

And with that, I bid you good night. I will try to catch up on the threads tomorrow.

Jul 29, 3:28pm

Happy new thread :)

>19 jessibud2: Glad that things went sort of smoothly with all the appointments.

Ken Burns' next documentary sounds fantastic. Can't wait!

Jul 29, 4:57pm

>19 jessibud2: Lots of good here Shelley, but bah to the inflexibility. That said, I guess such facilities are stretched in these times, and carers lives are tough. I hope the intervention you made works for everyone going forward.

Ouch, Three Mothers just found its way into my shopping cart!

Jul 29, 6:45pm

>19 jessibud2: What >21 Caroline_McElwee: said, with added profanity and some malediction.

Jul 29, 8:51pm

Hi Shelley. I've added Ethel Rosenberg to the tbr pile.

Jul 30, 6:47am

>19 jessibud2: Glad most went good, Shelley, and so good you kept calm about the inflexibility.
So Owen and Theo had it both they way they like it :-)

Jul 30, 9:28am

>20 figsfromthistle: - Hi, Anita. Good to see you back! Hope things are going well with you.

>21 Caroline_McElwee: - Thanks, Caroline. So far, so good, with the new help. There are 2 managers of the place my mother lives. One is, and has always been, compassionate and open and easy to talk to. The other one, is and always has been (to me, anyhow), aloof, dismissive, and in my opinion, has a real issue with power and control. She never calls me by name name, and rarely makes eye contact. She is a tall woman (maybe 6 feet tall) and always wear heels. I interpret this as needing to tower over everyone else, to intimidate and she does, indeed. I am 5 feet nothing and while I don't cower, I also am not easily bullied. I have always held my tongue and was brought up to always be respectful. But this was the last straw. Anna, the one I like, is on vacation this last week which is why I had no option but to deal with Rosemarie. Anyhow, we move forward and my fingers remain crossed.

>22 richardderus: - Yep, thanks, Richard. Good thing she couldn't hear my inner voice. It contained much of what you said!

>23 Whisper1: - I just started that one last night, Linda. From the cover blurb: "...Here is the resonant story of what happens when a government motivated by fear tramples the rights of its citizens". I had read about the Rosenbergs many many years ago and have been fascinated by their story ever since. She was put to death, along with her husband, orphaning her 2 young children, for a crime she did not commit. Much new evidence has emerged in the almost 70 years since their execution and this is a book I have looked forward to reading. It's also the one of the 3 library books I have at home that is due back soonest so I will read it now.

>24 FAMeulstee: - Hi, Anita. Thanks. And yes, both my boys seem to do well when I am away, I have discovered! lol!

Jul 31, 11:40pm

Hi Shelley. On your prior thread you noted of your cat sitter, Jacqueline, that "she sent me daily reports and photos." I love that!!! It will help when you are away to know how things are going back home with the feline family members!

Ago 1, 2:09pm

Happy new thread!! Sorry about all the issues with your mom. It certainly can get challenging. Hope you find a way to enjoy your feeder sans pigeons. They can really get annoying. Enjoy your books!

Ago 1, 2:20pm

Shelley, I am sorry that your mom is dealing with some challenging health issues. I send all good wishes to you and your family.

Ago 3, 4:48pm

I'm sure you must have explained before Shelley, but where does 'jessibud' come from?

Ago 3, 6:30pm

>29 Caroline_McElwee: - Lol! A million years ago, when I first joined the world of *internet*, I needed a screenname for the first site I joined (a book site, of course, bookcrossing). I wanted something that would keep my real name protected, so being a cat person and being perhaps not as creative as I could have been, I chose the first thing that popped into my head: I combined the names of the 2 cats I had at the time, Jessie and Buddy. They lived to 17 and 18 years, respectively, but I have always kept that name for my online screenname and I even created an email address for non-personal email using that name (of course, it has now become my main email addy).

That said, I suspect I may not be alone in this train of thought. ;-)

Since my sweet J & B, I have also had the late great Mia (of my LT avatar fame) and Lexi, and now, of course, Hurricane Theo and the slowly mellowing Owen. But no name changes in the plans... :-)

Ago 3, 6:40pm

>26 EBT1002: - Ellen, the agency that I use has it very well organized. I use a lockbox to store the key (the kind real estate agents use when showing houses for sale) so I don't have to give a key to anyone. They also have the reporting policy whereby the sitter sends a voice message after each visit, in my case, twice a day. It appears in my email inbox as a message and if I want to actually listen to it, I need to download the app. In order to do that, though, either through google or youtube, I have to agree to give them access to my photo files. Maybe this is the way the world of apps or the world in general operates. I never claimed to be part of that world, however, and I refuse to give such permission to the likes of google or youtube. I suspect they could probably access anything they want, if they really wanted to, anyhow but I don't plan to make it easier for them.

So, the hilarious part of this whole deal is that there is obviously some sort of transcription program because what Jacqueline actually says in her message is transcribed into text which I read in the email. And it's ridiculous and crazy. Here are 2 samples. When she says "oh and" you know it's really *Owen*. The rest is just nuts.

" Hi, it's Jacqueline reporting for oh and it's July 27th, the time is 445-2515. We think is good here. So he's looking happy and healthy, he's playful and social and he did good amount of grooming to me. Please? Look is looking pretty relaxed and content hope you're doing well. I'll be back tomorrow morning, thanks bye."

" Hi, it's Jacqueline reporting for oh and it's July 26th the time and that time at 820 everything's good here. He's doing well. It's left the bottom wigley when he was playing with his toys chance toys very sweet and it's we played for a while and then you know, he's just laying down in the kitchen area you had active late session. So he'll probably have a nice little dab. Right now. It's looking pretty relaxed hope you're doing well me back tonight thanks bye."


I know this has to be transcription because when she sends me regular private messages through the agency's website, she is perfectly articulate and makes no grammar mistakes. LOL

Ago 3, 6:44pm

>27 Berly: - Hi Kim. Nice to see you here. I may try putting the feeder back out in the fall. The squirrels are making me crazy right now with their pine cone messes. They sit on the branches and denude the pine cones, dropping the cores and tons of individual pieces of them all over my lawn. I think of it as the squirrel equivalent of guys at ball games spitting sunflower seeds. Gross, and a pain to clean up. Raking just doesn't catch them all, and then, the next day, there is more. (and pardon me if that sounded sexist but I have yet to know a single female who spits sunflower seeds. Sue me)

All that to say, I don't need the pigeons now, too, ;-)

Ago 3, 6:44pm

>30 jessibud2: Aha. Thanks for the cat tales Shelley. I've long been curious about your monica.

Ago 3, 6:46pm

>28 Whisper1: - Thank you, Linda. It is an ongoing issue that we simply must do our best to deal with. Both my brother and I live far away and don't get to visit as often as we used to, pre-covid. I just have to stay on top of things.

I hope you are having better days, yourself. I am happy that you have the supports that you do, to help you.

Ago 4, 10:54am

Hi Shelley. I have been rarely thorough about visiting threads, especially reluctant about leaving messages, when I do get there. When I can't think what to say, or comment about that seems timely, I don't post anything. So this is also a 'nothing' comment at least re books and reading!

I thought the solution about hiring a private worker to help your Mom in the evening was a reasonable approach but the amount paid for your Mom's care is likely very expensive, so I can appreciate that you must have been seething over this issue. Canadian care homes that fulfill their patient's needs are more or less non-existent, aren't they?

Ago 4, 11:53pm

>30 jessibud2: BookCrossing was your first website?! Cool! So glad I found you there. :)

Ago 5, 12:25am

Happy new thread! Sorry about all the stress with your mother---elder care is tricky, isn't it? Glad your cats did OK when you were gone.

Ago 5, 3:44pm

>35 SandyAMcPherson: - Hi sandy. Thank goodness my mum has savings. She always taught us to save for a *rainy day* or our *old age*. Well, for her, that time is now and thanks to wise investments, she has the money for this time we are going through. Good thing because I doubt my brother and I could afford all of this for her. Anyhow, whatever it takes, we will do, as long as her money lasts. It should.

>36 SqueakyChu: - Yup! :-) And thanks to you, I am HERE!

>37 banjo123: - Hi, Rhonda. Yes, it's new territory for me. She would be appalled if she were more aware; her biggest fear was always dementia. She always asked me to shot her if she ever got to this. I used to reply that guns are illegal here.

As for the cats, well, my Hurricane Theo is not himself these days. It started Monday, He seemed lethargic and threw up a couple of times, something he has rarely done since he has been with me. I brought him to the vet yesterday because he wasn't eating, either. The vet gave me some stuff for hairballs (that malt flavoured stuff in a tube that he did like enough to lick right off my fingers). But although she also gave me a can of food to help stimulate his appetite and calm his tummy, he sniffed it and walked away. When he wouldn't eat his kibble, something he generally prefers over the wet food, I knew something was up. I brought a stool sample for analysis to the vet this morning and he still hasn't eaten at all today. Mostly sleeping and threw up twice. I have been very lucky with healthy pets all these years. I am not used to sick cats, especially not at such a young age. Theo is not even 2 years old yet. The only times any of my cats have been sick have been all related to old age. Sigh....

Owen, on the other hand, is frisky, friendly and warming up more and more. He still won't let me pick him up but he is beginning to allow me to play with his paws and give him belly rubs. Who knows, may a mani-pedi isn't far off. I can dream....

Ago 5, 5:40pm

Hi, Shelley. I was just wondering if you wanted your wooden nickel back. You left it at the turnstile at my thread. You know, Karen left a $20 gold piece. Jus' sayin'...

Ago 5, 6:34pm

>39 weird_O: - She's just jealous I got there first! ha! ;-) But sure, I'll have it back. I'll save it for your next thread, lol!

Ago 5, 6:45pm

>38 jessibud2: Poor Theo. I hope they find what it is fast. It’s not fun when animals are sick.

Ago 5, 9:05pm

I'm sorry to hear about your trouble with you Mom's care home. I realize schedules are important, but you simply cannot impose strict timing on people who have lost their sense of time. I hope your private assistance continues to solve the problem.

And THEO....don't be sick, little buddy! I do hope the cause is determined quickly and the cure is a simple thing.

Ago 6, 3:55am

>38 jessibud2: Sorry to read about Theo being sich, Shelley. I hope he returns to being the hurricane soon!

Editado: Ago 6, 11:20am

>41 EllaTim:, >42 laytonwoman3rd:, >43 FAMeulstee: - Thanks, Ella, Linda, Anita. I think Theo has turned a corner. He stayed downstairs overnight instead of sleeping on my bed but there were no signs of puke anywhere when I went looking (as opposed to yesterday, when he threw up several times) and he actually ate his breakfast (I did give him a bit less; I can always give him more later if he asks). And he is definitely more perky this morning than he was yesterday and he talking to me again so I think he is going to be fine. Whew!

And Canada just won Gold at the Olympics in women's soccer! I never follow soccer but I had to watch and it was a nail-biter. I don't really understand the rules but in the end, who cares. This is one happy country right now!

Ago 6, 11:26am

Hi Shelley.

>19 jessibud2: It seems ridiculous that they couldn’t have switched the schedule around. Unless your mum was the last one on the bedtime schedule it should have been easy. Ridiculous petty power plays.

>44 jessibud2: Kitty on the upside and Canadian Gold. Yay.

Ago 6, 3:20pm

It does sound as though all the trends are trending the way that will maximize your happiness, Shelley. May it continue!

Ago 6, 6:35pm

The finalists in the Bird Watching photo contest. I think I do love the first one best, though each one of them is amazing in one way or another!

Ago 6, 6:38pm

>45 karenmarie: - Yep, power play, for sure. Thanks, re the rest!
>46 richardderus: - Thanks, Richard.


Vet called and no parasites, thank goodness. So, just have to try to find food for sensitive tummies. That is my mission tomorrow... he is definitely more Theo than he was yesterday! :-)

Ago 7, 12:31pm

>47 jessibud2: Stunning photo.

>48 jessibud2: Glad Theo has improved Shelley.

Ago 7, 12:35pm

>49 Caroline_McElwee: - Did you see my reply to you, Caroline, up in >30 jessibud2:? ;-)

Ago 7, 3:05pm

>50 jessibud2: Yes, made me smile Shelley. Thanks for the inside story.

Editado: Ago 8, 9:14pm

How is Theo doing? Hope he is back to his old (young) self.

Ago 8, 5:21pm

>47 jessibud2: That’s a fun link, Shelley. Loved the first one, such an unexpected contrast. And number three, the tern with its small chick.

Glad Theo is doing better!

Ago 9, 3:55pm

Hi Shelley my dear, i am starting to get back around the threads again, and hope all is well with you, sending love and hugs from both of us dear friend.

Ago 10, 8:37am

>52 mdoris: - Theo is back to being Hurricane Theo, thanks, Mary. It was probably nothing more than an upset tummy but I am just so not used to any sickness in such young pets, it alarmed me. I count myself (and Theo!) lucky in that. How is your pooch these days?

>53 EllaTim: - Thanks, Ella. Those photos are terrific, aren't they?

>54 johnsimpson: - Hi John. Good to see you out and about again. Hope life is settling back to normal again in your neck of the woods.

Editado: Ago 10, 11:16am

Funny article about rewilding your yard. Of course, one would need a lot more yard than I, personally, have. But I like the author's humour:

And while I most certainly do have squirrels and raccoons, I have never seen an armadillo up my way (though I did once manage to snap a few pics of an opossum in my front yard. A face only a mother could love!)

Ago 10, 6:25pm

Glad Theo is back to his rambunctious self. Good news. Pooch, that is her majesty Loki has just turned 2 and a neighbour posited that that's when they grow a brain. We are patiently waiting.......

Ago 10, 6:50pm

>56 jessibud2: Fun article Shelley. None of these critters in my garden, but I like her approach to problem visitors.
My garden problems are: slugs, rabbits, weeds, and more weeds. I wish I had some armadillos! Anything that will eat slugs, please.

Ago 10, 7:22pm

>58 EllaTim: - I'm with you on the slugs and the weeds, Ella! And I wish I had the space to divert the squirrels!

Ago 10, 7:26pm

And I also just saw an ad today from my local big box bookstore for the sequel to Dear Mrs. Bird by AJ Pearce, called Yours Cheerfully. I immediately thought, how long will I have to wait for the paperback edition, when I noticed it IS in paperback! I may just have to saunter over tomorrow.....

Editado: Ago 12, 2:32pm

Last night I watched a really fascinating film (through my Hot Docs theatre, streaming online), about the wonderful Dutch artist M. C Escher, in his own voice as gathered from his letters, journals, notes, lectures, etc, and narrated, as his voice, by the wonderful Stephen Fry. It included actual family photos and old film footage, interviews with 2 of his 3 sons (with English subtitles for them), and short clips with, of all people, Graham Nash (of Crosby, Stills and Nash), who was/is a great admirer of his. And of course, the film featured much of his artwork and the background of many of the pieces. Interesting to me was that he never considered himself an artist, rather, a mathematician. This film was exceptionally well crafted and made excellent use of animation to bring to life not only his art but also his words. Hard to describe this but it was terrific and worked so well. The film is called M. C. Escher: Journey to Infinity. Here is a clip, I hope it works here; scroll down for the blurb, or once to the right for the trailer:;

Another little thing I noticed (because I do!), is that he was left-handed!

I have loved his work ever since I bought a book by him, called The Graphic Work of MC Escher when I was a teenager, which still sits on my shelf today.

Ago 12, 8:07pm

Oh, I have to see that- I have a Hot Docs membership.

Ago 12, 8:32pm

>62 torontoc: - It was really good, Cyrel. I also purchased tickets to 2 other films, Los Hermanos and Ronnies, as well as I just signed up for 2 new Curious Minds lectures series, Rebel Women and The Great Singers. When it rains, it pours. I could go weeks or even months without seeing anything, then, all the good stuff appears at once! Also, next week, there is a free-for-members author's talk, with Salman Rushdie. It's on Tuesday evening.

Editado: Ago 19, 6:22pm

Ethel Rosenberg: An American Tragedy by Anne Sebba.

Many years ago, I read a book called The Implosion Conspiracy by Louis Nizer, and that was the first time I became aware of Julius and Ethel Rosenberg, and the events that rocked the country at that time (they were convicted of spying and passing secrets to the Russians). It was published in 1972 and I probably read it not long after that. I don't actually remember a lot of details of the book itself except that I found it a shocking story and it stayed in my mind. I also peripherally knew that the Rosenbergs' 2 young sons, who were only 6 and 10 years old at the time of their parents' executions in 1953, had been adopted by a loving family and grew up to be intelligent, upstanding citizens.

Fast forward to now and this new book, by Anne Sebba, caught my attention. She has done her homework and this is a very well-researched accounting not only of the facts we all know from the sensational story that gripped the world, but she also reveals a lot of what went on behind the scenes. She was able to access documents that had been sealed for years, and also, remarkably, she was able to interview a few of the people from that time who were actually still alive at the time of her writing. What she reveals is just how much paranoia there was at that time, just after the Cold War, and how much that paranoia contributed to what amounts to an egregious and disgraceful miscarriage of justice.

The *evidence* against Ethel herself was flimsy, at best, and untrue and fabricated, at worst. Her own brother and sister-in-law, both under suspicion and investigation themselves, lied in their testimonies and in the end, they got away with lighter sentences while Ethel and her husband were executed. They showed no remorse. Although not religious at all, the fact that Ethel was Jewish was a factor, as many American Jews at that time were often thought to be left-leaning Socialists (or Communists) and this was dangerous for them. In fact, the judge, and most of the lawyers on both sides, were Jewish and may have been exceptionally harsh because they wanted to be seen as being loyal to the country and as such, felt justified in being particularly hard on the Rosenbergs. One of the lawyers for the prosecution was Roy Cohn, an especially sleazy and unethical man. He was quite young at the time and after this trial, he went on to become the chief counsel for Senator Joseph McCarthy some years later in the famous Army vs McCarthy trials. That should say it all.

I also found it telling (though not at all surprising) that author Sebba quotes Donald Trump asking, "Where is my Roy Cohn?", at some point (Cohn did have legal dealings with Trump in Trump's early real estate days). The echoes of the paranoia and untruths today under trump's administration, were not lost on me.

There were some repetitions in the book but overall, this was a grim, terrifying and fascinating read.


I am currently reading The Three Mothers about the mothers of Martin Luther King, Jr, James Baldwin and Malcolm X. Not quite half way through but this author also has done a lot of research. So far, so good...

Ago 13, 5:53am

>64 jessibud2: Your previous mention of The Three Mothers led to it landing on my mat. Should get to it in a couple of weeks Shelley. Will look forward to your thoughts.

Ago 13, 7:56am

Happy Friday, Shelley. Great review of Ethel Rosenberg: An American Tragedy. I will add that one to the list. The Escher doc sounds really interesting too. Do you know if any of these are streaming anywhere?

Editado: Ago 19, 6:26pm

>65 Caroline_McElwee: - So far, Caroline, it reads partly like a scholarly paper but not in a bad way. The author's approach is to begin with the backgrounds of the families and family stories behind the three women, comparing and contrasting their histories and drawing parallels. I do like that format and so far, for me, it is working nicely. The three were born just a few years apart, but in very different places, and under very different circumstances but one thing they all had in common was that they were all born to families who loved them fiercely and supported them, something that wasn't always a given for Black families, or Black women, at the turn of the last century, anywhere. So far, I am liking the book. I will report back later.

>66 msf59: - Mark, I just checked the Hot Docs site and unfortunately, the film is only screening within Canada, through their site. But I bet you could find it on Netflix or some such other place or service available in the States if you look because it's a fairly new film. Worth the effort to search it out. Same with the other 2 films I mentioned.

Editado: Ago 13, 8:26pm

I just watched another terrific documentary, called Los Hermanos (the brothers). A film about love. A film about music, talent, and the power of all of it to overcome political constraints. In spite of Nixon, Reagan, Bush, Clinton and trump, these 2 extraordinarily talented brothers, separated at a young age, manage to find a way to play, perform and even record together. They come from a musical family and their gift is their life. The music in this film is delightful and I would love to see them perform live! Both were classically trained but the Latino music of Cuba, as well as jazz influences, come through in their music. Ilmar plays violin, and Aldo plays piano and composes, as well. One's wife is a conductor and the other's wife is a cellist. Their parents were also both musicians. If you close your eyes, you can almost imagine little musical notes in their blood if they bleed!

Here is the blurb from the Hot Docs site; unfortunately, no trailer is available. But if you google them I am sure you will find something to listen to. Aldo Lopez- Gavilan and Ilmar Gavilan. (And both are pretty easy on the eyes, too. Just sayin'... ;-))

"Cuban-born brothers and virtuoso musicians Ilmar and Aldo have spent decades apart, living at the opposite sides of the political chasm that separates Cuba and the United States. But despite the distance and different existences, the brothers have always had an instinctual connection. When brief windows of open relations between the two countries allow the siblings to reunite, they embark on a joyous tour across their native and adopted homelands, where they revel in each others’ company and create beautiful classical, jazz, and Latin music. Featuring an electrifying score composed by the two brothers with master violinist Joshua Bell and the Harlem Quartet, this heartfelt film shows how the bonds of family—and the power of music—can transcend political divide."

Ago 13, 8:38pm

Good to see that Theo is back to eating again, Shelley, and that you found a solution that would work for your mom even if the care home wouldn't cooperate.

The book about Ethel Rosenberg looks like a good one and is now on hold at my library. I have to wait for a few other readers to go through it first but I might have a few books to keep me busy around here while I wait. The Escher film is tempting me.

Editado: Ago 13, 8:50pm

>69 Familyhistorian: - Meg, you could stream it from Hot Docs, even without being a member. The ticket cost is slightly higher for non-members but still probably cheaper than in a theatre. Follow the link in my post if you want to check it out. I thought it was very well done and worthwhile.

Editado: Ago 19, 6:29pm

Because I have been reading a lot of heavy non fiction lately and because I had to purchase the new AJ Pearce sequel to Dear Mrs. Bird the minute I saw it the other day, I decided to start Yours Cheerfully last night. So far, it promises to be every bit as fun as the first!

And, in case that doesn't give me a happy break from grim real life, I am heading out to pick up a book from the library that I have been waiting for for quite some time. It's a children's book, written by Bette Midler, called The Tale of the Mandarin Duck: A Modern Fable. Here is the blurb from the library's website:

"Inspired by the real-life rainbow-colored Mandarin Duck who appeared in New York’s Central Park in 2018, this modern fable by Bette Midler celebrates the connections people make with each other and the world around them. How do you get people to appreciate what is right in front of them? In The Tale of the Mandarin Duck, it takes a mysterious, beautiful duck and a clear-eyed kid to point out the obvious! Bette Midler’s distinctive voice joins striking photos of the real duck by Michiko Kakutani and charming black-and-white drawings by Joana Avillez. This book will have readers of all ages coming back to visit the fantastical interpretation of New York City and its odd ducks—both feathered and human."

Sounds delightful and much needed these days! Away I go!

Edited to add that this book by Bette Midler, with photos by Michiko Kakutani and illustrations by Joana Avillez is lovely. I wasn't sure what to expect, really, but I love that it pokes fun of the human obsession with staring at the screens in our hands instead of looking at what is actually right around and in front of us. Gently, kindly, but no mistaking. So very Bette! And both the photos and the illustrations are terrific. Recommended, whatever your age is!

Ago 14, 1:35pm

>71 jessibud2: I'm on the library's wait list for that one.

>64 jessibud2: A tragedy and a farce all in one! The Public Burning was an excellent fictional treatment of it, should that ever float past you.

Happy weekend's reads!

Ago 14, 2:24pm

>72 richardderus: - I never heard of that one, Richard but I clicked on the title to have a peek at some of the reviews. Wow! And eek! I will make a note of it and perhaps, I will get to it one day. Not now, though. I also feel I want to go back and find a copy of Doctorow's The Book of Daniel because Sebba mentions that one more than once in her book, as well. I have read other titles of Doctorow's but not that one and even if I had, I would likely get more out of it now than if I had read it when I was younger and knew nothing about the Rosenbergs.

I would like to think that lawyers and especially judges today would never get away with what those slimebugs got away with in 1953, but sadly, the real world has probably not improved, ethically, since then....

Ago 15, 4:08pm

Glad Theo is feeling better. And I enjoyed hearing about the evolution of your LT name -- I always wondered about that. Can't believe the twosome lived to 17 and 18! Happy reading and happy Sunday.

Ago 16, 10:43am

I am very admiring of Escher's art. I've got a fat coffee-tablesque volume of his work, which I've paged through but never read. I also got a copy of the book you mentioned just a couple of months ago. Would like to see the doc, but limited distribution is vexing.

I have a copy of The Public Burning that I got when the book was first published, and I did read it, though I remember only that Nixon was in it. Well, that and the sensationalist buzz surrounding it. Shucks. Now I have to scour the stacks and give it a better-informed look.

Ago 16, 5:26pm

>74 Berly: - And the two after Buddy and Jessie lived to 18 and almost 21!! Hi Kim!

>75 weird_O: - Hi Bill. I don't have netflix or anything but because it's a fairly new film, I would think that it might not be too hard to track down. It will be worth your effort. It was a good film.

Editado: Ago 16, 6:45pm

I generally don't like loud heavy metal rock. If it doesn't have a hummable melody, it's not likely I will be a fan. Just an old folkie (or fuddy duddy) at heart. That said, I do like the band Queen. Of course I do.

Today, on the CBC radio program called Q, the guest host, Ali Hassan (who is a terrific interviewer), spoke at length to Brian May, Queen's former guitarist. Such a good listen, interspersed with plenty of music, too. In case anyone is in the mood (Karen? ;-), it's about half an hour long, here ya go. Click the arrow in the circle to listen to it:

Ago 16, 6:36pm

>77 jessibud2: I’ve met Brian May - besides being a guitarist, he’s a planetary scientist who studies dust in space. He’s on the science team for New Horizons. Really nice guy!

Ago 16, 6:39pm

>78 drneutron: Nice to have met him properly Jim, my only claim to fame is he once held the door for me, at a play his now wife was in.

Ago 16, 6:51pm

>78 drneutron: - Very cool! But, in your line of work, they are ALL cool, those folks you meet;-)

>79 Caroline_McElwee: - Caroline, that cracked me up. I remember once, my own *claim to fame* (not!), I was once in an elevator in a Tel Aviv hotel, with 2 pro tennis players who were playing a match in town. I did not know who they were till I saw their faces later on a poster in the hotel lobby! (Vitas Garulaitis and Bjorn Borg, I think). They must have thought I was nuts not to be going gaga over them, lol.

Ago 17, 10:08am

Hi Shelley!

>77 jessibud2: Thank you for sharing this. Absolutely yes, Karen was in the mood.

>78 drneutron: That is fantastic, Jim!

Ago 18, 7:39am

I quite like this quote:

"I would be most content if my children grew up to be the kind of people who think decorating consists mostly of building enough bookshelves". ~Anna Quindlen, "Enough Bookshelves," New York Times, 7 August 1991


Editado: Ago 18, 10:42am

Hi, Shelley. I also wondered about "jessibud" - good to know the beloved cat origins.

The Ethel Rosenberg sounds interesting. What a tragedy. I didn't know Trump wished he had his own crooked Roy Cohn. Of course he did.

Sorry to hear you're having to deal with eldercare challenges. Mine are both gone now, but I remember that time well. It felt weird to have the two who raised us and made so many decisions for us growing up unable to take care of themselves. My dad said to me, "you get to be the parent now'. At the time, I uncharitably thought, I have two kids, I don't need more. But you do what you got to do, and I think they both had pretty good ends of life.

Ago 18, 1:44pm

>83 jessibud2: A thing at which I, most fortunately, succeeded.

Happy Humpday!

Editado: Ago 19, 6:21pm

The Three Mothers by Anna Malaika Tubbs.

It's interesting, I have books by or about Martin Luther King, Jr, Malcolm X and James Baldwin on my shelves, as I speak. The ones I have read most of are the Baldwin. Yet, I never much thought about their mothers. And their influences on their sons, the influences that shaped the men they became. Which is precisely the point of this book (though, in all honesty, to say they shaped a nation might be a bit of a stretch).

Author Anna Malaika Tubbs herself became a Black mother of a Black son while writing this book, and this book evolved out of her PhD thesis. At times, it reads a bit like an academic paper, mainly when she talks about the history and the social environment in the United States over the last few hundred years, but that context, in my opinion, was necessary for readers who are not familiar with the racist history because it informs everything and every part of the lives of America's Black citizens. I am familiar with it and still, some of it was new to me. At times, she is a bit repetitive, and at times (not a lot), she brings herself into the narrative. But mostly, this is a very readable exploration into the lives of the three mothers, pulled together from not a lot of information out there. Her premise is that mothers, and Black mothers particularly, have often been invisible, and erased from history. I think she did an admirable job in bringing the stories of these three mothers to light.

The three mothers were born within a few years of each at the turn of the last century. They were born in very different places, and into very different circumstances. They lived very different lives, as well. But one thing they shared was that they were all born into families that loved and cherished them and instilled in them a desire to be strong and educated. They all faced discrimination of varying degrees throughout their lives. How they accomplished these goals and overcame their challenges, and managed to pass these values on to their children is told in the stories Tubbs reveals. Sadly, they also all buried their sons.

I knew a bit of the stories but certainly not a lot. I had no idea, for example, that Alberta King, Martin Luther's mother, was assassinated in her church as she sat playing the organ, just six years after her son was murdered. One would think, given how famous her son (and her church, the Ebenezer Baptist Church) were, that I might have heard about this before, but I hadn't. Of course, as I often do during or after reading NF books, I did a fair bit of googling, to fill in some details.

I am now looking at my shelves and deciding which books of the three men I will read next. I have several volumes of Baldwin's fiction and non-fiction, a couple of bios of Malcolm X, and a book by MLK's wife, Coretta Scott King. A wealth of choice, really....

Ago 18, 9:40pm

>84 jnwelch: - Hi, Joe. Yeah, that trump would somehow come up in that narrative didn't surprise me. It was somewhat creepy that history seems to repeat itself, that humans seem to learn nothing from the bad mistakes of the past. We are doomed, aren't we...

Thanks for the commiserating re my mum. We move forward as best we can. She is still verbal and (slowly) mobile, and thankfully, still knows us. But she is not really all that aware that she has dementia, and I take that as a blessing. It was always her worst nightmare, to end up that way. Sometimes, she does to me what your dad did to you. If I am making a decision or something, she will smile and say to me, "Yes mom". Her sense of humour is still intact, thankfully, and because her personality has always been upbeat and easy-going, that is also still the essence of who she is. Thank goodness. I'm not sure how I'd manage, from such a geographic distance, if she were cranky and mean to those caring for her. She isn't, and they love her, and for that I am more than grateful.

>85 richardderus: - Me too, Richard, me too! ;-)

Ago 19, 6:06pm

>86 jessibud2: Glad it was a hit Shelley. I'll probably get to it next month.

Ago 22, 7:24am

Can this be for real? I mean, why not just go with trump's bleach solution. After all, trump endorses it.

I swear, the mentality of Fox TV and its followers is, or should be, a real concern. Their broadcast airwaves seem to be eating away at viewers' brain cells...

Ago 22, 9:32am

>89 jessibud2: It is unbelievable, Shelley. Better poison yourself than get the only thing that works, a vaccine.
Gives a lot of candidates for this years Darwin Awards...

Ago 22, 9:38am

Hi Shelley!

>87 jessibud2: If I am making a decision or something, she will smile and say to me, "Yes mom". Her sense of humour is still intact, thankfully, and because her personality has always been upbeat and easy-going, that is also still the essence of who she is. Thank goodness. The silver lining.

>89 jessibud2: Oh yes, horse dewormer. It boggles the mind.

>90 FAMeulstee: Oh, I’d forgotten about the Darwin Awards!

Ago 22, 10:09am

>90 FAMeulstee: - Me, too, I had forgotten about the Darwin Awards. So true, Anita. Maybe they should rename them the Donald Awards. ;-p

>91 karenmarie: - Hi Karen. Silver lining indeed. May it last.....

Ago 29, 11:17am

I hope you're having a good Sunday so far, Shelley. Everything okay?

Editado: Ago 29, 7:52pm

Dragging myself back to my own thread. It seems it's been awhile!

It's been a very sluggish week, for me. The heat and humidity are really getting to me. The migraines seem more frequent and I also had an IBS attack, first in maybe 10 years, that really caught me off-guard. I had forgotten how awful they can be. But it passed and I am fine now. The heat (mid 30sC, with a humidex factor making it feel closer to high30s/low 40sC) almost daily, is just making me want to do nothing but sleep. Thank goodness for the A/C or I'd surely not survive this. Mother Nature's revenge for humans' abuse of her gifts and resources. I truly do believe it's beyond too late to turn it around, pessimist that I am. I just hope the planet doesn't explode while I am still around for the experience....

I finished Yours, Cheerfully, the delightful sequel to Dear Mrs. Bird. Emmy Lake, the protagonist, is a feminist and a multi-tasker extraordinaire, long before those words were part of our vocabulary. Author AJ Pearce has such a talent for capturing the sound and flavour of the era and the heart of WWII London. Writing letters (by hand!), blackout, rationing, all those things that are not part of the life I live, felt so real. I look forward already to the next installment....

Started but have not yet finished Our Malady, another short volume from Timothy Snider (who wrote On Tyranny. It's such a small book and I have already underlined a ton of passages....

And, while cruising my shelves for my next fiction, a book from 2013 by Maggie O'Farrell just seemed to scream out to me. It's called Instructions for a Heatwave. Seemed logical to select this title, this week, don't you think?! I will start it later today.

I was also very sad to learn that Ed Asner has died. I saw what may have been his final film, earlier this year, at the Toronto Jewish Film Festival. It was called Tiger Within, about a Holocaust survivor and a young homeless teen, and the friendship they develop. Heart-wrenching but so very Asner.

Hope everyone is keeping well. And cool!

Ago 30, 1:42pm

I’m sorry for the heat and the migraines, Shelley! You must be sick and tired of it all. I hadn’t realised you were still dealing with it. I find heat taxing as well.

Yes, it’s hard to not be pessimistic, and in fact, it probably is better than the rose-tinted glasses some people seem to wear! I heard about Greta Thunberg, that she was very depressed at first, hearing about climate change and its effects. But after this period of depression she said “why am i being depressed, while there is so much we can do about it?” That seems the right kind of optimism to me, not easy to achieve, and especially not when you are feeling tired and down.
There was a documentary about her on TV, but unfortunately I missed it.

Wishing you better times. (Here it’s constantly cool, the slugs are having a fest in my garden)

Ago 30, 2:09pm

>94 jessibud2: I still write a few letters by hand Shelley. In my teans and twenties I had several penpals too.

Sorry about the health bumps and heat.

Ago 30, 3:02pm

On reading the 1948 Classic ROAD TO SURVIVAL,
one learns that Covid is unfortunately taking care of one of the major components of Climate Control.

Ago 31, 10:13am

Maybe watching Kim Stanley Robinson's TED talk can help that sense of impending doom?

Sep 1, 7:52am

Hi Shelley.

>94 jessibud2: I’m sorry about the migraines and IBS attack. I hope you’re doing better. The heat sounds terrible, glad you’ve got A/C.

Sep 1, 5:20pm

>94 jessibud2: It's all under the heading of what my grandmother used to call "Summer complaint". Anything that ails you is made worse by the heat. Joining the chorus wishing you relief from all of it, and soon.

Sep 2, 7:50pm

Normally I am a person who Knows My Own Mind. Startling, I realize, for you to hear I've always been such a soft-spoken crowd-goer-alonger.

Stop laughing.

Anyway. I need help. The wisdom of the crowd is sought to help be decide between two equally strong contenders for Read of the Month. I am simply incapable to unparalyzing myself from the FOMO I get thinking about this problem.

Please vote on the poll or you will be directly responsible for my re-admission to the Goofy Garage this birthmonth.

Editado: Sep 3, 9:40pm

>95 EllaTim: - The oppressive heat and humidity have broken, Ella, thank goodness. In fact, our weather right now is about perfect, sunny, cloudy, breezy, open windows (no air conditioning) and I even wore a sweater when I went out yesterday morning! my kind of weather. It should last another week or so and I'll take it! Rain Sunday but we truly need it.

>96 Caroline_McElwee: - I have always been a letter writer, Caroline, and still write postcards.

>97 m.belljackson: - I don't know that one, Marianne, and am not sure I am up to reading yet another depressing book about what humans have not done...

>98 richardderus: - Well, it's an interesting perspective and a lovely fairy tale with a happy ending. But sadly, I am not an optimist when it comes to the human race. Fortunately, I won't be around to see us not even make it to 2070. His ideas are good ones, for sure, but look around, who is leading us and what are they doing? Not likely...

>99 karenmarie:, >100 laytonwoman3rd: - Thanks Karen and Linda. As mentioned, the heat has broken and that is the biggest relief. But covid numbers are once again on the rise and here in my country, protesters have taken to the streets across the country to voice their protests against health care workers, of all people. I am not proud to say this but I wish those anti-vaxxer protesters could be denied care if they get sick with covid. Or at least triaged to remain at the back of the line. Permanently.

Here is an article from today's Montreal Gazette paper:

I am heading to Montreal again next week to see my mum as I worry that as autumn arrives, and the weather cools, and as covid numbers continue to climb, the managers of her facility may not allow me to stay with her again and I would like to get at least one more visit in before that happens. Just anticipating and trying to stay ahead of the game.

Anyhow, other little things adding to the stress count but I will leave it at this.

>100 laytonwoman3rd: - voted.

Sep 6, 10:33am

Note the ginger cat. His name is probably Theo.... ;-)

Editado: Sep 6, 3:09pm

I'm not sure how I'd manage, from such a geographic distance, if she were cranky and mean to those caring for her. She isn't, and they love her, and for that I am more than grateful.. It was the same for me with my dad, and luckily, like your mom, he was gracious and his caregivers loved him. That made everything a lot easier.

I also loved Yours, Cheerfully, after Dear Mrs. Bird. There are serious notes, especially involving WWII, but they both are so welcomely upbeat! I’m ready for more Emma whenever the author is.

Sep 6, 6:22pm

>31 jessibud2: That transcription is hilarious!

Hi Shelley. I'm making some LT rounds today. It's a bit awkward as Carson has claimed my lap so my laptop is balanced on the arm of my chair. This requires one-handed typing which slows things down a bit.

>103 jessibud2: So cute.

>102 jessibud2: ..."protesters have taken to the streets across the country to voice their protests against health care workers, of all people."
Our world has lost all semblance of sanity. We are reading about professional women tennis players, especially Americans, who get death threats, rape threats, and general verbal abuse on social media platforms after they lose a match. It's all so incomprehensible. We have a safe tool with which to end the pandemic, but nooooo.....

Dear Mrs. Bird is one I've been eying of late.

I had penpals starting around age 8 through my teens. I still send hand-written notes to my Tennessee aunt now and then, and I send postcards a lot, but hand-written letters feel like an element of modern life that has mostly been lost.

About your mum, "Her sense of humour is still intact, thankfully, and because her personality has always been upbeat and easy-going, that is also still the essence of who she is." I'm so glad. I know it's terribly difficult in any case but that her true self is still present and accessible is such a gift. Hang in there!

Sep 8, 8:33pm

>104 jnwelch: - Thanks, Joe.

>106 jessibud2: - Hi Ellen. Dear Mrs. Bird and the sequel, Yours Cheerfully are both good reads. This new author has a real knack for creating the time and place, and her humour does not detract from the seriousness that sometimes surfaces, as is to be expected, given the setting. They are delightful reads.

And yes, our world has definitely lost its sense of sanity, if it ever had any. It's hard to stay optimistic so I am just trying to focus on things that please me, to keep me sane. Reading, gardening, the cats, among other things. I will vote, of course, on Sept 20, when our country goes to the polls but there isn't much optimism there, either, and a pretty shallow pool to choose from, in my opinion, but this time, I think that I will just vote with my gut instead of *strategic* voting, as I have had to do in the past. I don't think it will make much difference but it's better than doing nothing.

I am off tomorrow to Montreal to visit my mum. I wanted to get at least one more visit in before they tell me I can't stay with her, as I expect might happen at some point if the covid numbers continue to trend upwards, as they are now, pretty much everywhere. Of course, if that happens, I will stay at a hotel if I have to, but I'd really rather not as it's a real shlep getting to and from her place from the hotel. But I will do whatever needs to be done.

I am taking 4 books with me. With any luck, I will come home with more, if I can go for a walk one day to the bookstore near my mum's place. :-)

Back on Tuesday. I don't have internet at my mum's place and can't access LT on my phone because it's just way too small a screen for me to deal with. Stay safe, everyone.

Sep 9, 12:01am

Hope you have a great visit with your mum. : )

Sep 9, 6:28am

Have a good visit Shelley.

Sep 9, 6:59am

Sweet Thursday, Shelley. Have a good trip to see your Mom. Do you still have your feeders down?

Sep 9, 7:39am

Have a wonderful visit with your mom :)

Sep 9, 7:43am

Echoing what everyone else says - have a good and safe trip and a wonderful time visiting your mum. Plus reading and bookstores, of course...

Sep 9, 8:06am

Thanks, everyone. I am leaving shortly to drop Theo off at the vet's. They love him there and he seems to consider it a vacation. :-) I put the carrier near the front door about an hour ago and he's been sitting on top of it, waiting in anticipation. Silly boy!

Yes, Mark, the feeder has been down all summer. I think I will put it up again when I get home next week and hope for the best. I have really missed the birds.

Sep 9, 10:33am

Hi Shelley. I have posted a cartoon that you'll really appreciate about now. I won't post it here, as it seems like hijacking a book thread with politics. But it is so pointedly true!

I lurk here now and then to keep up with what's happening in your life. Best wishes for your visit to see your mother. I also agree that focusing on the small sane things (especially reading and gardening) is a good approach.

Sep 9, 1:28pm

All the best for you (and Theo!) on your visits.

Sep 9, 1:43pm

Hope all goes well in Montreal Shelley!

Sep 9, 3:14pm

Safe travels!

Sep 9, 4:36pm

Happy travels and a safe trip home, Shelley.

Sep 9, 7:38pm

Safe travels, Shelley! I really do need to get Dear Mrs. Bird out of my reading stacks!

Sep 11, 5:59pm

I did something that messed up my mum's tv so I had to call Bell Canada. Thankfully, they were able to send a technician this morning. He fixed whatever it was that I did and I finally bit the bullet and requested that they reinstall the internet to her service package so I am thrilled to be back on my own laptop again!

>113 SandyAMcPherson: - Sandy, that is great. Please feel free to post here. I never consider it hijacking when it's something interesting!

Thanks for the good wishes, Kathy, Mary, Rhonda and Richard. Things are going nicely so far. We had a visit from some cousins today and tomorrow, my cousin who picked me up from the train will come pick me up again and take me to her oldest daughter's house and the 3 of us will go for a walk. Stephanie is pregnant with her first and due on my birthday so fingers crossed that she sticks to the plan. It will be fun if that happens. (she is the one who, 2 years ago, at her wedding, put a book on every guest's table, to take home. She is a librarian). Then, her mum, Mindy, will drop me off at my favourite little bookstore and I will walk back to my mum's later. She'd join me if she didn't have the dog with her. ;)

The weather here has been perfect. Cool, sunny, breezy, my ideal weather. I have a sweater but haven't really needed it yet.

I have been watching some of the 9/11 coverage. Can't do too much but I will watch 2 back to back specials on CNN tonight. I am so grateful trump isn't still in power and hasn't (I assume) been invited to speak because you know he'd be as inappropriate as ever and make it about him.

My mum enjoys the tennis and though I don't officially follow it (and never understood the scoring), it has been fun to watch these 2 young phenomenal girls. The Brit is also technically Canadian, having been born in Toronto. She will likely win, as I type, but Leylah Fernandez is a joy to watch.

The brand new season of Jeopardy begins this Monday and I'm curious about how they will handle it. The supposed new host, who has since been dumped, had already taped the first week of new episodes. I wonder if they will air or if they will just allow those contestants another chance later and have someone else host.

I am also reading a lovely book, a very slim volume I may finish tonight or tomorrow, by Helene Hanff (of 84 Charing Cross Road fame), called Letter from New York. The *letters* were originally scripts for a BBC radio show she did for 6 years, pulled together for this book, published in 1992. Every time I read her, I am reminded why she is such a delight.

Sep 11, 6:44pm

>119 jessibud2: Yay for having internet. Have a wonderful visit with your Mum, Shelley. Enjoy the walk with cousins and put in a word for her to deliver on her due date!

Sep 11, 6:46pm

Thanks, Meg. I hope so!

Sep 11, 7:34pm

Glad to hear you are having a good time Shelley, with plenty more treats in store. And internet access too. It's good yo be able to keep up your connectivity too.

Sep 12, 11:48am

Sounds like a good visit!

Sep 13, 11:46am

Quick update. I went to one of my 2 favourite little indie bookstores yesterday, Bibliophile, and came home with 4 books. As soon as my mother goes down for lunch, I am heading out for my walk which will take me to the other one, which wasn't open yesterday. I haven't been out yet today but it looks gorgeous so I can't wait. I will try to limit myself today because, after all, books are heavy in the suitcase. At least the suitcase has wheels... I will list the stash later.

I think I am nuts. But it's my indulgence, my treat to myself, for all the stress. Or so the justification goes. The gal working at yesterday's bookstore and I talked for a long time about books. So much more fun than in a big box store! Both these indie stores are very tiny but cozy and their owners are so knowledgeable.

I finished the Helene Hanff book and and haven't decided yet what to start next. That task awaits me later on....

Sep 13, 12:31pm

YAY for the bookishness and connectivity of this trip! Glad it's been so smooth, so far.

Sep 13, 3:23pm

>119 jessibud2: "The brand new season of Jeopardy begins this Monday and I'm curious about how they will handle it." Edwards only taped five shows, and they will air. I looked it up, because I noticed the promos for the new season do not feature him, only the returning champion. I don't see how they could have a "do over", especially if someone had defeated the champ.

Sep 13, 3:49pm

>126 laytonwoman3rd: You are probably right about that, Linda. What a stupid mess. He never should have taped any of them, never should have been in that position in the first place. So, what happens next week? Who will be the host then? I haven't heard anything, have you? I wish they'd just give it to LeVar already.

Sep 13, 4:25pm

>127 jessibud2: Mayim Bialik is going to host temporarily, while they continue to debate who gets the permanent spot. I liked her a lot when she guested before. Unfortunately, I didn't get to see any of LeVar Burton's shows, as Jeopardy was pre-empted in our market by Olympics coverage.

Sep 13, 5:12pm

I liked him. He is good (if a tad enthusiastic) but I think he'd be great for the spot, and he has the chops, intellectually. I also think Mayim Bialik is good and wondered why the hosting position had to be split at all, frankly. Alex never shared it with anyone and if she is competent to do the tournaments, she is competent to do it all, in my opinion.

But no one is asking me.... ;-)

Editado: Sep 13, 7:00pm

>124 jessibud2: Yay for new books! and visiting favorite stores! This week there are 2--count 'em--2!--big library sales within driving distance for me. They are annual sales that didn't happen last year.

But I've made a commitment that from now on, for every book I bring into my house, I will purge an older book from my shelves. Mostly these will be books I've bought (and not read), but no longer hold the same interest for me when I bought them, and that are way, way down on my priority list of books to read.

Hope your remaining days with your mother continue to be good.

Editado: Sep 14, 9:19pm

>122 Caroline_McElwee:, >123 torontoc:, >125 richardderus:, >130 kac522: - Didn't intend to ignore anyone up there, sorry.

I am home, my boys are home and we are all happy. My Theo must be on his best Mr. Personality behaviour when he is at the vet's. They LOVE him there! lol. I have never seen a staff so enthusiastic about a boarder. I was told he is welcome back ANY TIME! He talks all the time and they love it. Anyhow, we are a happy little family again and I, for one, will sleep well, back in my own bed.

I have always sort of marched to my own drum, and so it goes with books. I don't necessarily go for the *lists* or the newest out. I must browse the shelves and tend to be attracted to what is unfamiliar to me. I read the blurbs and whatever the current mood is, that's how my decisions are made. Once I figure out how to get the pictures out of my damn cellphone and onto the computer (tomorrow! I will call and have them walk me through it tomorrow!), I will post a pic. But here is what came home with me from this trip:

Exile Music
Before the Fall
Fifty Words for Rain
House of Glass
The Good Father

Hmm. There is a 6th one but I don't see it. I wonder if I left it at my mother's by mistake. Oh well. A surprise for the next visit.

I also finished 2 books while there and will try to get some reviews up soon. Meantime, I have to go watch my Toronto Blue Jays tonight. They are on a tear. Just a few short weeks ago, they were in 4th place (out of 5) and it seemed inevitable that they were not going to make the post season. And then they busted out. Big Time. They swept the Yankees in 4 games, which helped as the Yanks were ahead of us. Then, over the weekend, they lost the first of 4 games to the bottom place Baltimore Orioles. What happened next was INSANE. In the next 3 games, they scored - ready for this? - 44 runs! This is baseball, folks! I am a big baseball fan but even this was off the charts. They won the final game by a score of 22-7, and had won 11-10, and 11- something in the 2 previous games. 44 runs is probably more than they scored in the entire previous month! Anyhow, we are now nearing the top of our division and I am glued to the tv.

I am happy they are playing at home this week as our stadium has a retractable roof. We are under a tornado watch tonight, apparently. But it won't be rained out.

Sep 14, 8:11pm

Glad the trip is going well and you are able to peruse some bookstores!

>131 jessibud2: Yes the Jays certainly have had record breaking games!!!! Incredible. GO Jays Go! :)