"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, October 11, 2015

Sunday Salon, Oct. 11th

Male Blue Grouse. Photo taken July 2013 at Paradise on Mt. Rainier. Photo by ABennett

Weather: Blue skies right now but it rained earlier this morning.  This time of year there is always the threat of rain.

Adventure Day to Mt. Rainier: Don and I both had Friday off work, for different reasons. We had time to scrunch in an adventure day which didn't take us too far from home since we had commitments on Saturday. We decided a trip to Paradise on Mt. Rainier was in order. Don couldn't remember the last time he had been to the National Park at Paradise. I had gone with the girls two years ago. Surprisingly, we live only 70 miles from Mt. Rainier so it is shocking we don't go there more often to enjoy the spectacular view. The morning started with an awesome sunrise over the mountain but by the time we got to Paradise, it was completely covered by a cloud.  We were on a mountain but couldn't see it.  We hiked a bit and then it started to pour so we went in the lodge, watched the National Parks film about Mt. Rainier, shared a cup of coffee waiting for it to abate. It didn't. After an hour or more we decided to head home. No big deal we'll go back another day when it is sunny. This time we hope to visit the grove of old giant trees which is on the southeast slopes.
This is what the steps to Rainier looked like on Friday, October 9, 2015. The mountain was obscured by clouds. Photo by ABennett
This is what Rainier looked like two years ago on a beautiful summer day. Photo by ABennett
From the kitchen: This week we baked a broccoli and bacon quiche, homemade biscuits, and banana cream pie from scratch. Not good for the diet, but everything was yummy. Believe it or not I have never made biscuits or banana cream from scratch before. it really makes a difference.

The Martian: After our favorite football team lost in double overtime, we went to see the new movie, The Martian, to cheer ourselves up. It worked. We got lost in the movie and cheered for Mark Watney as he tried to survive after being abandoned on Mars. The three of us had all listened to the audiobook and really enjoyed it. We recommend reading the book then going to the movie. there are a few differences, none of them vital to the story.

In honor of "The Martian", here is David Bowie singing "Starman." The movie was full of music from my era. Enjoy.

Book completed this week: Being Mortal: Medicine and What Matters in the End by Atul Gwande, MD. This should be required reading for anyone who has a family, especially aging parents.

Currently reading:

  • Shadowshaper by Daniel Perez Older. Consider YA Urban Fantasy, with a creepy aspect.
  • The Hired Girl by Laura Amy Schlitz. This was the only book I had in the car to read while we were waiting for the rainstorm to pass. I like what I've read so far, set in the early 1900s, diary style.
  • Symphony for the City of the Dead: Dmitri Shostakovich and the Siege on Leningrad by M.T. Anderson. Audiobook, nonfiction, included the history of the USSR under Lenin and Stalin up to WWII. Very well written. I am learning a lot. Even though I am only 1/3rd of the way, I can already highly recommend it.

Here is Muffy in the leaves yesterday. The patch on her back was shaved for the spinal surgery four weeks ago.
Update on Muffy: improving every day. We still have to walk her with a sling but she is starting to express her personality. Today she attempted to walk Don into the bushes where she likes to sniff around. Don will take her to her follow-up appointment this week. We don't anticipate any problems.

Thought for the day (this one is for me)Be grateful for what you have and stop complaining - it bores everybody else, does you no good, and doesn't solve any problems.Zig Ziglar


  1. So glad you liked Being Mortal! And love this photo of your dog.


    1. I love the Muffy picture, too. It helps the the leaves are so lovely.

  2. Glad to hear Muffy is doing better...and great photo (the second one :) ) of Mt. Rainier.

    I want to see The Martian but my wife doesn't so I'll probably end up seeing on DVD. I enjoyed the book and am looking forward to it, despite the changes, slight as they may be.

    1. We are so lucky to live so close to Mt Rainier, though we can't always see her if she is concealed from sight.

  3. I want to see The Martian!! I loved that book. I'm happy that Muffy is making progress! Sorry about the trip up to the mountain, only to have it hide. We're used to that though, aren't we? :)

    1. I hope you get a chance to see The Martian. You read the book earlier, correct?

  4. Sounds like a great trip! I also love the sound of your bacon and broccoli quiche. Back in the 70s, I had a lot of quiche recipes which I got from Redbook magazine (an insert). I wonder what happened to them? I remember one that I really enjoyed called French Onion Quiche. So delicious. I used to make them ahead and freeze them.

    Enjoy your week, and thanks for visiting my blog.

  5. Love the photos and it sounds like you had a great trip! I love homemade biscuits, but usually someone else makes them. I have The Martian on audio but haven't listened to it yet. I hope Muffy gets good news at the vet!

    1. You will love the audio of The Martian. Hope you find time to listen to it soon.

  6. Glad to see Muffy out and about!

    I love the photos of Mt Ranier on a sunny & cloudy day - we have climbed plenty of mountains here in the East and not able to see 5 feet ahead of us at the top! Sorry your hike got rained out.

    I would love to Read Being Mortal - have heard such good things about it. And I'm dying to see The Martian! I just finished reading the book and loved it. I need to get feeling well enough for a movie outing :)

    Enjoyed the music as always - thanks!


    Book By Book

  7. Glad Muffy is improving. We also saw the movie The Martian and thought it was entertaining. Like the songs in it too. We liked the book a bit better but still enjoyed the movie. One difference I noticed was that the sand buggy journey wasn't as rough or long perhaps as in the book.


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