"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 17, 2021

Sunday Salon...January 17th

Northwest Trek Park on Saturday, January 16, 2021. Ian ran and jumped and climbed and slid and laughed. Over and over. The first photo shows Ian, Grandpa, and a moose reminding everyone to wear a mask! The mountain goat is made of concrete. We actually saw very few animals but had lots of fun.

Rain, rain, rain, sunbreak, rain, fog, rain, drizzle, rain, wind. This has been our week in weather. Tuesday night we had a sudden, dramatic wind event that knocked down lots of trees and electrical power to lots of homes. We were able to make a quick trip to Northwest Trek Park with our grandson on Saturday (see photo above) and though it was overcast and cold, the rain held off long enough for a fun, dry visit.

Today (and tomorrow) we celebrate the life and words of Martin Luther King, Jr. All the words and quotes throughout this past were big, important words spoken by the remarkable man, asking us to do what we can to make the world a better, more equitable place for everyone.

"Darkness cannot drive out darkness, only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate, only love can do that." -MLK, Jr.

Family news: 

  • Northwest Trek Park: We gave Ian a membership to this wild animal park located halfway between our house and his. Saturday was the first day we activated the pass. They have a fabulous play area for kids and Ian climbed and ran and slid and ran and climbed and played and made a friend over and over. Very few animals in the park were out to view so that part of the day was a disappointment but Ian didn't care because he had so much fun running, playing, sliding, and climbing. (He took a LONG nap when he got home.)
  • We watched all of both seasons of The Mandalorian this past week and loved it. Now we are catching up on the last three Star Wars movie, starting with "Star Wars: The Force Awakens, Episode VII"  Late to the party, but we have arrived.

"We have before us the glorious opportunity to inject a new dimension of love into our civilization." -MLK, Jr.

Books: I've been reading and reading sincethe new year because I am currently in the middle of my Cybils Award judging assignment. But in addition to the Cybils finalists I've also squeezed in a few other books. Since January 1st...

  • Books completed:
    • Plasticus Maritimus: An Invasive Species by Ana Pego. Cybils Nonfiction, Middle Grades. About plastic pollution in the the oceans and what to do about it. Excellent. Print from library.
    • The Story of Civil War Hero Robert Smalls by Janet Halfmann. Cybils nonfiction, easy reader. Robert Smalls, a black man and a slave hijacked a steamboat and delivered it and several cannons to the Union Navy, making him a Civil War hero. We need a fuller view of history that includes contributions from women and POC, too! E-Book from publisher.
    • The Magic Fish by Trung Le Nguyen. A YA graphic novel about an Asian immigrant to the US trying to figure out how to communicate important information to his parents when language is a barrier. The story is partially told through fairy tales. Print from library.
    • Normal: One Kid's Extraordinary Journey by Nathaniel and Magdalena Newman. Nathaniel was born with Treacher-Collins Syndrome which causes severe facial malformations. This is his story told him the kid and his mom. Well done with cute, humorous comics to add to the story. Cybils nonfiction, middle grades. Print from library.
    • All Boys Aren't Blue by George M. Johnson. Cybils nonfiction, High School. A memoir about growing up black and queer. An important story so that every kids who visits a library finds themselves in print. Print from library.
    • The Talk: Conversations about Race, Love, and Truth edited by Wade Hudson. Cybils nonfiction middle grades. Conversations parents have with their children about important topics. Some are essays, others short stories, poems, graphic depictions. I devoured this book but I wonder if kids would choose to read it without encouragement. Print from library.
    • Dinosaur Lady: The Daring Discoveries of Mary Anning, the First Paleontologist by Linda Skeers. Cybils nonfiction fro children. I love it that Many Anning is finally, over 100 years late, getting credit for discovering the first dinosaur. Print from library.
    • Winged Wonders: Solving the Mystery of the Monarch Butterfly Migration by Meeg Pincus. Cybils nonfiction for children. A beautifully rendered children's book that talks about all the people who worked together to solve the mystery of monarch migration. E-book provided by the publisher.
    • All Thirteen: The Incredible Cave Rescue of the Thai Boys' Soccer Team by Christina Soontornvat. Cybils nonfiction, middle grades. A day by day, moment by moment account of the rescue efforts made to save the whole soccer team trapped in a cave in Thailand. I learned much about caves, diving, culture, language, and Buddhist religion. Exciting. E-book from library.
    • The Enigma Game by Elizabeth Wein. A favorite author and part of a loosely connected books in a series which has characters I've met before from the Beaufort-Stuart family. I took a little time out of Cybils reading to walk back in history to the WWII efforts in UK involving the use of an enigma machine. E-book checked out from the library.
    • Martin's Big Words: The Life of Martin King, Jr. by Doreen Rappaport. Read by our pastor's wife during Zoom church today.
  • Currently reading:
    • Where the World Ends by Geraldine McCaughrean. A YA Printz honor book set in one of the Scotland when a group of boys get marooned on an island. Audiobook from library, 32%.
    • A Promised Land by Barack Obama. The first half of his Presidential biography. We are listening to this one very slowly since Don and I have to be in the car together to make progress. Audiobook, 35%.
    • Ex Libris: 100 Books to Read and Reread by Michiko Kahutani. This was a Christmas gift from Don. Books about books are personal favorites. Print, 64%.
  • On my reading list for upcoming week, but I haven't started yet:
    • The Cat I Never Named: A True Story of Love, War, and Survival by Amra Sabic-El-Rayess. Another HS Cybils nonfiction selection.
    • Apple: Skin to the Core by Eric Gansworth. A memoir by a Native American told in stories and poems.
  • Other book-related news:
    • SOTH book club meets this coming Tuesday at 7 PM on Zoom. The book we will be discussing is High Achiever, a memoir about a drug addict. It should be a surprising discussion.
    • RHS book club meets to following week to discuss The Vanishing Half. Click on the hyperlink if you want to read my review.

"To ignore evil is to become accomplice to it." -MLK, Jr.

Good news (politics and other stuff):

1. Joe Biden will be inaugurated on Wednesday, January 20th. We have been holding our breath for nearly three months. It will finally happen.

2. Kamala Harris will be the first female Vice President of the USA. She will also be the first Asian-American, Black female in that role.

3. Twitter banned Trump. In one week misinformation about the election dropped 73%! (Rawstory)

4. I know I shouldn't gloat but "Trumps Future Looks Rotten." "Jennifer Rubin, WaPo, 1/14/21"

5. Biden to set up FEMA and the National Guard to conduct COVID-19 vaccination clinics. (CNBC)

6. 11,780 votes. CBS 60 minutes show. 1/10/21. An interview with the Secretary of State in Georgia about the phone call Trump made with him in an attempt to get the votes changed in the state so he could win Georgia. My sister asked me to post this because it makes such a strong case against voter fraud. I wasn't able to find a YouTube for this session. But if you click the link and fast forward to 15:30 you will find the interview. It is a little over 10 minutes. (CBS)

  "The time is always right to do the right thing." -MLK, Jr.

On the lighter side (just a few funnies):

1. Now that the Republicans are no longer in power they want Democrats to forgive them.



4. Hmm. Can you think of a book? I'll give you a hint. It starts with F and ends with "stein." I understand that some of Trumps MAGA followers have turned on him in recent days.


 New feature to my Sunday Salon---

Something I have said or done that I never did before 2020: Complained about hairs in my face mask getting in my mouth. Yuck!



  1. Ugh! Hairs in your mouth! I'm making that face in sympathy!

    I'm glad you were able to enjoy time outside with your grandson.

    The Mandalorian is so good! The last 3 Star Wars movies aren't my favorites but they aren't bad either. They're certainly better than episodes 1-3.

    Enjoy your week! We have less than 24 hours to go until the inauguration as I type this!

  2. I am reading this on Tuesday. Just over 18 hours from now and Biden will be President. Thank goodness!


Your turn. Please comment below.