A Little Friday Night With Your Saturday Morning

Good morning ☀️

I believe yesterday was the first Friday I didn’t post since starting this blog. I didn’t forget, the day and all of its details were just one too many. By the time I sat down to write, it was 11:30 pm. It was super quiet and calm, but I was just too tired.

Every day has its own unique set of parameters and priorities that we all navigate around and within, in order to get things done.

This blog is one of my priorities. It has to be -if I want it to exist. I keep a monthly schedule of what I plan to post throughout each week. It’s flexible, but it helps in the organization of this blog as a whole.

The next step is photography. None of my photos are stock. It is more work, but like writing, I also enjoy coming up with photos. There are only two spots in my home that I use due to the amount of natural light. These spots, although great, have their limitations. The biggest one- time of day. If the light outside doesn’t match up with when I need to take pictures, I have to figure out another time. The looming time change (that happens tonight) throws a further wrench in to things.

There are many details that have to come together in order for a single post to materialize. Sometimes it feels like a crazy balancing act of work, picking up the kids from practice, thinking of what to write, house chores-oh wait, the light is amazing, I need to take that photo ASAP, but I can’t edit it because it’s dinner time. It’s a never-ending cycle and like anything else, although I love doing it, it takes a considerable amount of work.

Ok my dears, enough of the process, let’s get to the good stuff.

Since my normal Friday post features books, dessert, and wine, that’s what you will get this morning. In addition, my October wrap-up, and finally, a little challenge I’m going to take part in are included.

So get comfortable, grab some coffee, because I have a lot to share with you.

The Book:

This has been the week of:

To my knowledge, he has only written two non-fiction books. One is On Writing ( a great book) and the other is:

Danse Macabre (pronounced either dance or dawnce ma-cob) by Stephen King.

This was published in 1981 at the request of King’s then editor at Doubleday. At a bar, over a drink he threw out a question to King, “Why don’t you write a book about the entire horror phenomenon? Books, movies, radio, TV.” King goes on to say he was both intrigued and frightened by this idea.

Intrigued, because he had been asked over the years, why do people continue watch, read, listen, to things that scare them or make them uncomfortable? And pay to do so?

Frightened, because he saw this project taking a very long time to complete.

Danse Macabre is a book that I flip through, reference, read a chapter here or there simply because it’s so interesting.

King examines the history of horror, which makes this a history book. He pays homage to so many writers that helped shape this genre as a whole. My copy is marked up with page savers and highlighter ink.

Like On Writing, as well as every preface in every book I have read by him, King writes (therefore speaks) like he is sitting across from you at a bar. His voice feels real, which one more reason why I am a fan. I’m not sure if you are someone who typically reads an author intro or preface or skips them. If you are one who skips, give his a try next time. They are little snippets of him as a person, in my opinion, and they only add to the whole experience of reading his books.

Read Danse Macabre if you want to know more about the horror genre. It’s fascinating simply to learn some of the “tricks of the trade,” where certain ideas originated, and who did/wrote them best.

If you read my last post, I mentioned I would post a link to a favorite interview with Stephen King and his family. He doesn’t do a lot of interviews, so this one is pretty cool.

It was first published in The New York Times in 2013 by Susan Dominus. Even if you don’t read it, at least click on the link, because there is a great picture of him and his family sitting together at the kitchen table.

The Dessert:

This is a low-carb lemon-poppyseed bread. I added a handful of frozen blueberries and a tablespoon of Lavender Blueberry sugar-free syrup by Jordan’s Skinny Syrups, so it’s now Lemon-Blueberry-Poppyseed Bread! It is so delicious.

This recipe is not mine (other than the two things I added), but I will share where to find it. One of my dearest friends, Tasha, wrote a phenomenal Keto cookbook.

Granted, I get to taste-test a ton of her cooking and have made so many of these recipes-but this book stays on my counter. (And I hate unnecessary stuff being on my counter). This book is more than necessary and I reference it all the time.

Here is the Amazon link-also she has a second cookbook coming out next year!

The Drink:

Jam Jar in a jam jar.

It would be sort of embarrassing to try and explain how cool I thought that phrase was and how excited I was when it popped in to my head.

But now you know, so I’ll leave it at that.

Jam Jar is a staple wine in my home. As much as I post it on here, did I ever tell you that it hails from South Africa? I’ve always wanted to visit Cape Town and Johannesburg, and now I would like to add a stop at Jam Jar Wines while I’m there.

Next Up:

I only completed a paltry four books, but I did read parts of several others. I either lost interest and didn’t finish or I plan to come back to them at another time. Either way, only completed books within the month make it to the wrap-up.

1. American Predator by Maureen Callahan. ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

I posted about this one at the beginning of the month, I highly recommend this if you enjoy true crime.

2. Ghost Story by Peter Straub ⭐️⭐️⭐️

This is a cult-classic in horror. I liked it, but it definitely dragged in parts. It had a definite creep factor, but wasn’t scary. I’m glad to have finally got around to reading it. It has a vintage feel, which I loved.

3. Olive Kitteridge by Elizabeth Strout ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ & 1/2.

To say I loved this book is a giant understatement. I had read Strout before and I like her books, but I almost skipped over this one because two good reader friends absolutely did not like it. I am SO glad I gave it a chance. I plan to post fully about it this month. Also, I have the sequel, Olive Again just waiting on my nightstand. I almost don’t want to read it, because then it will be over. I do think there is probably no middle ground on liking OK. You either like it or despise it. What was/is so genius to me is the style of how the story is told. It’s written in stories. More to come, I promise.

4. Before We Were Yours by Lisa Wingate ⭐️⭐️⭐️

This was the Nov. selection for my bookclub. I had wanted to read this for a long time. That being said, I didn’t love it. It was way too predictable and just kind of fell flat. My initial rating was ⭐️⭐️ & 1/2, but the fact that it was a fast read and had a quote that I really loved made me up it to a three.

The quote:

“Life is not unlike cinema. Each scene has its own music, and the music is created for the scene, woven to it in ways we do not understand. No matter how much we may love the melody of a bygone day or imagine the song of a future one, we must dance within the music of today, or we will always be out of step, stumbling around in something that doesn’t suit the moment.” -Lisa Wingate

Last, but not least:

This is a reading challenge put on by several bloggers. It actually began last week and continues through the end of the month. Each week is hosted by a different blogger and features a theme centered around non-fiction books.

Last week was hosted by @JulzReads and asked several questions about non-fiction reading. Since I found about it on the last day of the first week, even though the second week has started, I still want to share my answers.

1. Favorite non-fiction book of the year so far:

American Kingpin by Nick Bilton

2. Do you have a favorite non-fiction topic?

True crime and psychology/psychoanalysis

3. Which non-fiction book have you recommended most?

I have two.

4. What am I hoping to get out of Non-fiction November?

To read more non-fiction! I have only read eight non-fiction books this year.

Aside from @JulzReads, the other bloggers who are hosting are: @sarahsbookshelves , @doingdewey , @shelfaware , and @whatsnonfiction .

Visit any of these cool blogs to learn more and tag #nonficnov if you want to participate.

Is your coffee finished? I drank three cups while writing this crazy-long post. Now do you see why I just couldn’t keep my eyes open at 11:30 last night to write all of this?

And- if you have read all of this, thank you!

Cheers.

“And, you know, I hope you have some fun with this book. Nosh and nibble at the corners or read the mother straight through, but enjoy. That’s what it’s for, as much as any of the novels. Maybe there will be something here to make you think or make you laugh or just make you mad. Any of those reactions would please me. Boredom, however, would be a bummer.” Stephen King, Danse Macabre

Ignore The To-Do List, Put Your Feet Up, & Enjoy Your Friday

How are you?

During the week there are so many blocks of time promised to other things. Whether it’s work, getting myself or my boys to appointments, going to the grocery store, or getting to practices. Between all of that I’m always making lists of what the next block of time will consist of. There are so many aspects to daily life and keeping a household running. That’s not accounting for the unexpected. Like the dryer or dishwasher breaking, or the toilet backing up, or somebody being a complete hypochondriac because they have run out of deodorant (it’s obviously completely irrelevant that there are little markets on every other corner where deodorant could be bought rather quickly in such an emergency). Is that why moms (and some dads, I’m sure) keep extras of everything stashed away, why their handbags are mini-arsenals of supplies that could probably get their family through the first days of Armageddon?

It’s all so much. I think that’s why I make lists and also another reason why I am so passionate about reading. List-making helps me to write things down in the moment, I can clarify and think more about the specifics later. Reading allows my mind to go somewhere else, even if it’s just for ten minutes. It allows me a break from the constant planning and thinking about what comes next.

Friday’s are the day that I have the biggest block of free time, or at least it feels that way. I look forward not having to get everything done in the evening because it’s a school night. Everyone’s mood is always better on Friday-have you noticed that?

People like breaks.

Not only do we like them, we need them, if simply to keep our sanity intact before the next dramatic outburst or turn of events smacks us across the face.

So, Happy Friday to you.

I came across On Beauty by Zadie Smith not too long ago. She is an author who has got a lot of literary attention. I have never read anything of hers, nor been particularly drawn to her work. OB is the one that has been most recommended to me, which is why I picked it up. Her first novel, White Teeth, was introduced in 1997 before its completion, based only upon a partial manuscript. On Beauty is her third book. Smith has taught at Columbia and NYU. She is married and has two children. Her first collection of short stories, Grand Union, will be published next month. Below is the Amazon synopsis:

• On Beauty is the story of an interracial family living in the university town of Wellington, Massachusetts, whose misadventures in the culture wars—on both sides of the Atlantic—serve to skewer everything from family life to political correctness to the combustive collision between the personal and the political •

If anyone has read this book or another of Smith’s books, I’d love to hear your thoughts.

Tonight I made two desserts, because why not? On the gold-colored plate are the Reese’s Cups and also the Almond Butter Chocolate Chip bars.

No Jam Jar tonight. This is a Pinot Noir called Cherry Blossom. It is a much dryer wine than JJ, but it’s good to mix things up. Maybe next week I will make three desserts?

Happy reading 📚

Sincerely,

tmc

“I have never known any distress that an hour’s reading did not relieve.” – Montesquieu