Monthly Archives: May 2012

Third Sentence Thursday, three times

Because I’m in one of those moods when I try to read more books than I have eyes, all at the same time, more or less.

The Forgotten Garden by Kate Morton

p. 87 – “I don’t have the time or the bed space for this.”

Ships’ sick bays are small, even when they’re not coping with an outbreak of something contagious and dangerous. One little girl who bumped her head, however badly, is one more patient than the doctor can cope with. She’ll just have to go back to her own cabin and her family.

Except that she doesn’t have either of them. Who would take a child on board a ship in 1913 London and abandon her there, to make her way to Australia all alone? And why?

The Unpleasantness at the Bellona Club by Dorothy L. Sayers

p. 95 – “But he never comes there now.”

Why doesn’t Robert Fentiman seem interested in finding the mysterious Mr. Oliver? After all, Mr. Oliver can help prove when his grandfather, old General Fentiman, died – and with any luck, that evidence will make Robert a rich man. And yet, he’s doing everything he can to discourage people from tracing Oliver. Why?

Lilith’s Brood by Octavia E. Butler

p. 35 – “Well, is the ship plant or animal?”

Does that sound like an odd question? Yes? Then you’re luckier than Lilith Iyapo. She’s lost her whole family, and then her whole world come the nuclear war that everyone dreaded, and been kidnapped – or rescued? – by hideously grotesque aliens. After a very long time completely alone in one room, she’s met one of the aliens and is being taken on her first tour of their ship. And the ship seems to be a forest, a forest where the plants can move on their own initiative.

A mystery

Okay, what happened here? Seriously. A week ago, this cherry tree two blocks from my house looked perfectly fine. On Saturday, it sprawled on the ground, split into three pretty much equal pieces, halfway down to the roots.

Lightning? But it doesn’t look scorched. A teeny tiny tornado? Its own weight? I don’t have a clue. Anybody want to guess?

Versatile Blogger Award

Thank you to Lea Jurock – who has a blog of interesting book reviews and photos, by the way – for nominating me for this one!

The rules of The Versatile Blogger Award are:

If you are nominated, you’ve been awarded The Versatile Blogger award.

  •  Thank the person who gave you this award.
  •  Include a link to their blog.
  •  Next, select 15 blogs/bloggers that you’ve recently discovered or follow regularly.
  •  Nominate those 15 bloggers for the Versatile Blogger Award
  •  Finally, tell the person who nominated you 7 things about yourself.

So – some of the blogs I’ve been following. (This was the hard part – there are so many great bloggers out there!) If you read my blog, you might be interested in the writers below. If you’re one of the writers below, I think you deserve an award; accept it if you want to. If you don’t like Internet awards, ignore it.

Alice (through the Macro Lens) who shares things we might never have noticed about the world inside and outside

Beverley Smith – so many thoughts about tracing your family tree, healthy eating and living, and much much more

Cedric de Alicoque, who posts wonderful photos of Mexico

Doodlemum, for her clever cartoons about life with three children and a very big dog

erafferty, who writes about living as a foreigner in China, and faith, and travel, and cooking…

Gilly Gee, wonderful photographer and writer and traveler and grandmother

Huffygirl, who spends her time either working out or else satirizing the world we live in (um, I think the post about Colorado importing unused Canadian oxygen was satire, wasn’t it?)

“K” from Oregon, who is determined to keep eating for only $35 a week

Laura Mays Hooper, who has so many ideas about how and what to write

Margekatherine, who encourages all of us to stretch our boundaries and enlarge our comfort zones

rthepotter, who seems to be interested in just about everything there is to be interested in, and takes pictures of it too

Suzie Ivy, who shares beyond-belief stories of life on the police force

Virginia Spencer, who takes lots of photographs and paints too! And who also has a (sometimes) purple dog.

Warren Smith, who draws and posts an impressively elaborate maze every single day – wonderful if you’re crazy about mazes like me!

ziggyshortcrust – elf portraitist and memorialist of doomed little white cars

And seven things about me –

1. I am probably the least talented aikido student in the known universe – it took me about twenty years to reach black belt. (Which isn’t the end of training – it means that you’ve learned the fundamentals well enough to start really studying.)

2. I’ll eat and enjoy just about any vegetable there is – but please don’t try to feed me lima beans or broccoli raab.

3. (Just in time for the unofficial start of summer) – I am not a beach person. Give me shade!

4. I enjoy singing – which doesn’t necessarily mean that anybody else enjoys hearing me sing!

5. I hate shopping for shoes.

6. I like to do things with my hands – cook, knit, garden, cat’s cradle, whatever. (Oh, all right. I probably haven’t done cat’s cradle since I was twelve. I bet I can find refresher instructions somewhere on the internet…..)

7. I can come up with plot ideas much, much faster than I can write the stories, so I have an enormous backlog of books begging me to write them.

Thank you

It’s been a hectic and tiring weekend…but it seems appropriate to take a few minutes for a Memorial Day thank you to veterans (including my late father). Thank you for risking your life. Thank you for giving up years of your freedom to make your own decisions. Thank you for seeing sights I can’t imagine and don’t really want to. Thank you for enduring mental and physical and emotional stress, the loss of friends, your own injuries…

I know I’m not covering everything. I’m an inexperienced civilian. But thank you.

Weekly Photo Challenge: Summer

A much, much easier Weekly Photo Challenge topic this week – “Summer”.

Summer is

boat races

thunderheads (and thunderstorms)

and street fairs.

But most of all, summer is



and green.

Friday Fictioneers – Losers

Here’s my try for this week’s Friday Fictioneers. (This was a hard one, I thought.) The photo prompt is –


“It was a sure thing.”

“Nothing’s a sure thing.”

“Yeah. Except losing lots of money going after a sure thing.”

“Well, it’s over. Lock up and walk away.”

“Wait. See those bugs – our last customers. Just a minute.”

“What now? There’s nothing in there worth bothering with.”

“I bet there’s a little syrup from the drink machines. I’m going to open the drive-in window so they can fly in and help themselves.”

“Moths like that don’t have mouths. They can’t eat your old syrup.”

“So we’re all losers.” Pause. “I’m leaving it open anyway. Might be hungry ants, right?”

“You’re a total doofus. But thoughtful. I’ll give you that.”

Third Sentence Thursday – Be careful what you wish for

(What’s Third Sentence Thursday? Open the book you’re reading to a random page. Post the third complete sentence on the page, with a few comments about the book.)

Emma by Jane Austen

p. 341 – “He was wishing to confide in her – perhaps to consult her; cost her what it would, she would listen.”

Poor Emma. She’s spent most of the book – and at this point we’re very near the end – trying to pair up all the unmarried people she knows, and they’ve been very uncooperative. But a girl has to do something with her time, after all.

Just recently, it’s occurred to her that she really, really cares about one particular man – but her best friend Harriet is in love with him, too. And now he wants to talk to Emma about the girl he loves. Oh, no! Is he in love with Harriet? All Emma can think of to do is to pretend that possibility doesn’t upset her. Not at all. Not the least little bit.