"Outside a dog a book is man's best friend, inside a dog it is too dark to read!" -Groucho Marx========="The person, be it gentleman or lady, who has not pleasure in a good novel, must be intolerably stupid." -Jane Austen========="I don’t believe in the kind of magic in my books. But I do believe something very magical can happen when you read a good book."-JK Rowling========"I spend a lot of time reading." -Bill Gates=========“Ahhh. Bed, book, kitten, sandwich. All one needed in life, really.” -Jacqueline Kelly=========

Sunday, January 5, 2014

Sunday Salon, Jan. 5th

Weather: clear and cold. The sky is blue as blue can be and the mountain is visible, cold and distant.

Winter vacation ends today: back to school tomorrow.  How will I manage since I am like a teenager, sleeping half the morning away everyday? How will I cope having to get up at 5:30 AM? It has been a very restful back end to the vacation it will be hard to return to the bustle of work at a large high school.

Undoing Christmas: every year we take such care getting out the Christmas decorations and loving placing them around the house. It usually takes me days to accomplish it to my satisfaction. Then, weeks later, we have to undo it all. This undoing of Christmas also takes me a few days until the house is returned to normal. But this time normal seems so drab and colorless after a month of the house being decorated in lovely, bright reds and greens. I bought a bunch of flowers yesterday to display on the fireplace mantle just give a splash of color.

Games: three games have dominated this winter holiday: Chronology, Cards Against Humanity, and Dominoes.

  • Chronology is a card game one plays with a group of people where you have to properly place a card on your timeline according to it's correct spot in history. It sounds easy until you consider the topics they ask, things like so-and-so invented the paperclip in this year. It is very invigorating. The largest group we played it with was eight people. 
  • Cards Against Humanity is like Apples to Apples for horrible people. The cards are all awful and un-PC, which makes it funny but not for the faint of heart...which happened to be me several times. My kids think this game is hilarious.  I probably should not even mention it here. 
  • Lastly, we played a lot of dominoes, we play the Cardinal Train version and it can be played with just two people up to five or six. We taught a friend how to play and now she wants to come over to play often. My daughter and I played a game that lasted 16 rounds last night. We play until one person gets to 200 points, which is a losing score. She had a score of 140 after three rounds so I thought I was going to beat her in short order but that didn't happen and the game went on and on. Soon the dominoes box will be tucked away in the closet until next vacation. Sigh.

From the kitchen: Sticky Toffee Pudding. One of my favorite desserts of all time is the sticky toffee pudding at the Rim Rock Cafe in Whistler, BC. Last night, after the never-ending dominoes game, my daughter and I decided to try our hand at making this delicious concoction. We found this recipe on-line and it WAS delicious and not as difficult as one would originally think after glancing at the recipe. Visit Thibeault's Table to check out the recipe. Monday I start a diet, so this is the last yummy dessert for a while. (Going out with a bang!)

Our version of Sticky Toffee Pudding, ready to eat.
Books read during vacation:

  • The Lacuna by Barbara Kingsolver...another winner by my favorite author. This one about an " epic journey from the Mexico City of artists Diego Rivera and Frida Kahlo to the America of Pearl Harbor, FDR, and J. Edgar Hoover. "The Lacuna" is a poignant story of a man pulled between two nations as they invent their modern identities."-Goodreads.
  • The White Bicycle by Beverly Brenna...a 2013 Printz Honor book about a young adult living with Asperger's Syndrome. Very illuminating.
  • Cats in Books: a Celebration of Cat Illustrations Through the Ages by Rodney Dale...I "won" this book as a white elephant at a Librarian Christmas Event. (Ha, we had white elephant books. Some were really funny!) I actually really liked this book.
  • Picture Me Gone by Meg Rosoff...a YA mystery that I am moving onto my 2014 Mock Printz list. (Click on hyperlink to see the list.)
  • September Girls by Bennett Madison...beside the authors's first name matches my last name there is not much to recommend this book. Which is really perplexing because one reviewer I read said it was in her top five to win a Printz Award this year. Hmm. Did we read the same book?

Books currently reading:

  • Round House by Louise Erdrich...a book club selection. I am listening to the audiobook. I really like the voice of the actor who is reading it.
  • The Boys in the Boat: Nine Americans and Their Epic Quest for Gold at the 1936 Berlin Olympics by Daniel James Brown...The boys on the crew team rowed for University of Washington so it has regional appeal. But I understand it is very good. Another book club selection.
Happy New Year!


  1. We tried to put our Christmas stuff away this weekend...or rather, I tried in vain to get the rest of my family to help!! I ended up getting most of it done except the tree.

    My sister brought Cards Against Humanity to our family vacation and made the kids all stay downstairs while the adults played. You are right - some of those cards are horrible! But we laughed until we cried - especially when my very naive, sweet aunt had to read some of them aloud! We actually gave it to my 19-year old son for Christmas - he was the only "kid" in the room and he said a friend at school has the game. We also like to play dominoes at my FIL's house in OKlahoma - don't know why we don't play at home!

    Wow, you have lots of great books going - hope you enjoy them and don't struggle too much with your early mornings!


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  2. Our family loves to play games, too. Our favorites are Hearts, Yatzee, and now we've added Rack-O (all from my childhood, which is fun)


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