Sunday, December 6, 2009

Sunday Ramblings - Giving Some Thanks AND Giving Away a Great Book

Jill is the winner of BURIED LIES. We've been in touch and Jill knows the book will be winging its way to her.

I wish I had copies to send everyone who dropped by. Even though I don't - I feel pretty good about being able to tell you about a book you might enjoy, but may not have heard about. I hope you'll give it a try.

Sometime next month, I'll be hosting another give-away, so keep watching. I'm not sure what it'll be, but I'll find something that will, hopefully, appeal to many of you.

In the meantime - many thanks for your support, and I wish you all the Happiest of Holidays!

Are you all still in the Thanksgiving spirit?

Still giving thanks for the blessings in your life?

Or has it already been replaced by the hustle and bustle of trying to get ready for Christmas?

If you're getting stressed about Christmas, I suggest you take a deep breath and back up from it all. Just a bit. Back up to a little over a week ago when you were giving thanks for family, friends, loved ones and the good things in your life.

Last week I did a long photo post giving thanks to Harley. That was certainly not to mean I wasn't (and still) giving thanks for the two most important people in my life.

My Mom - -

Is she not just the cutest?!

I love her to bits (and so does Harley Doodle Barley).

AND so does her son-in-law.

My mom is 83 and as feisty as she was when she was a new mom of 22 (my dad will love hearing this. He's no longer with us, but since I chat with him in my mind most days, I know he also reads my blog). Even at age 83 she remembers everything (unlike her daughter). If there's anything she might ever forget, it's that Donald is her son-in-law and not a son she gave birth to. The two of them couldn't possibly love one another any more if they really were mother/son. They're the best of buddies and are able to laugh together and tease one another unmercifully. And for that I am thankful. (notice the weaving loom in this picture? more on this in a minute.).


Here we are a week later (and I'm another year older - oy! Sixty-one years old. HOW did that happen?!)

And I have a cold.


I'm thankful I didn't have it the week of Thanksgiving.

There were just too many delightful things happening that week to slow down long enough to have a cold.

Mother and I shopped the day before Thanksgiving for Christmas gifts. We used to shop all year. Now, however, we've become more practical, AND because of the economy, don't seem to have as much disposable cash, so we've cut back on our gifting. And, again, because of the state of the economy, good sales are readily available if you have the time to look for them.

Thursday we ate and celebrated my birthday.

Friday Donald and I put up the tree (teeny tree!), and decorated the house (less than in previous years).

Saturday I wrapped gifts (fewer than in years past).

Sunday I baked -- I baked fifty-nine (59 ! !) little mini-bundt cakes for Donald and I to share with co-workers. They were adorable and why I didn't take pictures I have no idea! I used a recipe from one of my all-time favorite little cookbooks - Bibb Jordan's
"The Pound Cake Cookbook." I did Bittersweet Chocolate-Orange cakes. Delish and a highly recommended recipe.

And while we were having a productive, but fun and relaxing long holiday weekend, Donald did some weaving.


I am SO impressed with how Donald has taken to this whole weaving thing like a duck to water. Lookie here - here's that other very important person in my life I give thanks for -

My Donald - -

and here's what he's already done as his learning piece -


I'm over the moon proud of my Donald. Always.

One of the things I love most about him is his unending curiosity. About everything. And when he's curious, he'll delve into whatever is tickling his brain to learn everything there is to learn. And then - like this weaving thing; he'll just, by golly, do it. I love that.

hmmmm - - -

and now I've meandered into one of those corners I have no idea how to get myself out of other than just jump.


Jumping back to my cold.

(You knew I'd have to come back and whine about my cold didn't you?!)

I have the worst cold ever. THE worst. You think YOU'VE had bad colds?! Pfft! Never as bad as this one I'm sure. (insert evil imp right here).


I've whined about my cold - I feel better now.

And here's what I've been thankful for while battling the damn thing -

do you guys have favorite comfort foods when fighting a cold? and what might they be?

It's jello and good ol' Campbell's tomato soup for this gal.

And now I'm going to finish up my Sunday ramble with a give-away, with a brief little story behind it.

Peter Rennebohm is an author. A quite talented one. I "met" Peter at DorothyL. He is, without a doubt, one of the most gracious people on God's green earth. A few years ago, he offered DorothyL readers an opportunity that a reader just cannot resist. A free book.

But, there was a catch. He would send you a copy of his book "Blue Springs," OR a copy of his "French Creek" if you would promise to "pay it forward." Read it, send it along to someone who might enjoy it, and ask that they do the same. Greedy me asked for both. Lucky me received them. Even luckier was the friendship I received. A friend by the name of Peter Rennebohm. Who also happens to be a VERY talented writer. I passed along "Blue Springs," and I passed along "French Creek" and I kinda held my breath till they got back home where they belonged. They did and I was happy. Peter sent me an autographed ARC of "Buried Lies" when it came out last year and, not surprisingly, I loved it.

I haven't chatted with Peter in awhile, and he's not much for blogs, but I'm going to give him a little nudge in hopes he'll know that even though we don't talk often, I'm thankful for him, his talent, and his generosity.

Here's a picture of the cover of "Buried Lies" - isn't it great?!

And so is the book itself - It is terrific! An old fashioned treasure hunt, along with a puzzle mystery, AND a dash of romance. Full of interesting, well-drawn, believable characters AND one of the coolest covers ever. I enjoyed it tremendously.

And so did another of my favorite authors - William Kent Krueger - Here's what he has to say about it:
"Buried Lies is one big scavenger hunt of a book. Crossing both territory and time, the story is built around a couple of engaging puzzles. One is literal, with plenty of intriguing clues. The other, quite simply, is the mystery of the human heart. Author Peter Rennebohm tackles both puzzles with great gusto. The result is a thrill ride of a read that you'd be a fool to miss."

AND another favorite writer, and very good friend, Shane Gericke (whose third crime thriller "Torn Apart" will be published in July) says this: "
The X marks certain death in this very special treasure hunt. Buried Lies is a ripping good mix of hot action, cool characters, and compelling drama. Highly recommended."

I'm not giving away my signed ARC, but I'm quite proud to offer one of you a first edition copy of "Buried Lies." It was one I "paid forward," so it has been gently read. VERY gently. I doubt any of you could ever tell it's been read. The dust cover appears to have been removed each time it was read and has been very respectfully cared for.

Just leave a comment along with your email address and next weekend I'll draw a name and one of you will become the owner of this lovely book. Check back here next Sunday to see if you're the lucky winner.


Jen Forbus said...

Kaye, sure hope you feel better very soon. My comfort foods when I'm feeling sick - lots and lots of hot tea and noodle soup with nice hot broth. I have to admit (knock on wood) that I don't get sick very often, but when I do, I'm the world's biggest baby! Pa-thetic!

Love Donald's work so far on the loom. Can't wait to see it when it's done!

And I've been getting caught up in the hustle and bustle of the holidays, but you know, ever so often something is shoving itself front and center to remind me of how much I have to be grateful are among those reminders!

Have a wonderful week and feel better soon!

Viccy said...

Hey Kaye,
Hope your cold gets better before Christmas. It is surely a bummer to be sick over the holidays. I, too, am a Campbell's tomato soup gal. Not the Jell-o, came out of the womb hating that stuff. You are so blessed to have your mom. My mom died that year after I got married, but my dad is till with us, he just turned 81. We are fortunate he remarried a wonderful woman after Mother died.
As Jen pointed out, your posts are one of the things I am grateful for. I would really love to have the Peter Rennebohm book. Always looking for new authors. I just finished Deb Crombie's new one and it was so good. I will be emailing her to tell her how much I enjoyed it.
Love Donald's work. Weaving is great therapy or so I am told by my friends who weave.
Merry Christmas to you and yours, including, of course, Harley Doodle Barley.
Viccy Kemp

Unknown said...

Hi, I just love your blog and I don't read many. Take lots of Vitamin C and more if you feel a cold or such coming, and keep taking it, and lots of hot liquids, that's my remedy. And lots of tea, but decaf, like Bromleys, which taste as good as non-decaf. I do have lots of Tomato and Roasted Pepper soups that come in what they call Bricks, those rectangular cartons, various brans, organic, as soon as the weather turns colder. Trader Joe's sells them also. And I'd love a copy of Rennebohm's book. I always pass my mysteries along.
Feel better and a hug for yout mother who is a little older than I am, but not by that much.


Unknown said...

I should have checked for typos on my previous. Sorry.


Shane Gericke said...

Thanks for the mention, Kaye. It was a pleasure to endorse Peter's books, because it was a fun read.

Donald's weaving is unbelievably good. I've seen weavers doing their thing in Ireland, and this is every bit as masterful as theirs. Tell him good goin' from me, and that I expect a nice blanket out of this deal :-)

And you, dear lady, feel better!!!

Carol M said...

It sounds like we have a lot in common. My mom is 87 and is doing just great. She also remembers more than I do and I just turned 62. I talk to my dad, too. He passed away almost 14 years ago.

I hope you are feeling better. I just got over a cold. I think I got it from my grandchildren. I babysit a lot.

I'd be thrilled to win a copy of Buried Lies. It sounds just like the kind of book I would enjoy!

Kaye Wilkinson Barley - Meanderings and Muses said...

Hi, Everyone!

I am happy to report I am feeling great! I'm a firm believer in staying home, resting, napping, having lots of OJ and soup to beat your cold and by golly - it worked wonders this time!! Add a little Zicam (which I swear by) and you're going to be in better shape than you might think, quicker than you'd imagine.

I can't wait to pass along all these nice comments to Donald! that piece he's working on isn't going to be anything. That's just a practice piece so he can try different patterns, make sure he can read the patterns and just "learn." But hang in there Shane - that blanket will be coming soon! But not till I've gotten a gorgeous shawl (or two)!!

You guys!! More in common amongst us than we ever realized, huh? And I'm betting as time goes on, we'll learn even more. Don't you think?

Now, I know how to get in touch with most of you - but I don't have an email address for Zulema or for Carol M. Send them along, please OR just check back next Sunday to see who the proud new owner of Peter's book might be. I do think it's one you'll enjoy.

Jen - I'm a huge baby when sick too. It's just part of the whole thing, isn't it - a little allowed. And if you start getting stressed come to M&M to chill out, sweetie!

Viccy - I LOVE Deborah Crombie's series!!!! One of my favorites. Your dad sounds like a sweetheart - give him a holiday hug from me, please.

Zulema, thank you so much for your kind words about M&M. As you can tell, I'm a bit proud of it and it makes me happy to hear you're enjoying it. I hope you'll drop by often. And I will pass your hug along to Mother when I see her Friday - she'll love it!

Carol - maybe we'll get lucky with the "gene pool" with our smart, healthy moms and be just like them when we're in our 80s! you think?! Here's hoping. And here's to our sweet dads.

Hugs to each of you!

Stay healthy, everyone!!

Anonymous said...

Sorry about your cold! Hope you feel better soon. I find rum & cafe-au-lait is wonderful sometimes with a cold -- or without. Unfortunately, my cold turned out to be the flu. Hope yours doesn't.

Your blog is delightful!
Brenda W.

Unknown said...

Sorry you are ill. My favorite comforts are chicken broth (scientists say it really does work) or hot lemonade.

Haven't read Peter Rennebohm but must after this, even if I don't win the book. And I always 'pay it forward'. My copy of certain books have circulated among 7 or 8 friends. Always like to share a book I love.

boots9k at wowway dot com

Charlotte said...

I love tomato soup any time, when sick it is a must comfort food.

Love the cover of the give away book.

Jody said...

Hi Kaye. I hope you are feeling better by now. Hot soup is a comfort food for me too when I'm sick.


Carol M said...

I'll be back reading your posts but I'll leave my email anyway.

I'm glad you are feeling better!

mittens0831 at aol dot com

Jill said...

Kaye-I hope you are feeling better! We also had that darn cold. I love to make a soup called Ajiaco for colds. It is a soup that my Aunt from Colombia showed me how to make. It is basically a chicken and potato soup that you add condiments like cilantro, avocado, capers, and whatever else you like. Almost forgot the big dollop of sour cream.......yummmm.

Wow, Donald is going to town with his weaving! Looks like a good thing to gift at the Christmas party!

Feel better!

Kaye Wilkinson Barley - Meanderings and Muses said...

Brenda, hi - rum & cafe au lait?! How interesting!! Hope you're over that flu bug!

Shirley - good luck with winning this copy, but if you don't and if you do read Peter's book, I hope you'll let me know how you like it. (I think you'll love it!).

Charlotte & Jody - I'm with you. Yay, Tomato Soup. Actually, I just love soup. Especially homemade soup. Taco Soup. Vegetable Beef & Barley Soup. Chicken. yum. toss in some cornbread and I'm in heaven.

Jill - can I have your auntie's recipe, please?