Monday, September 28, 2020

Hit the Pause for Now

Last night, tried to think about what I wanted to write
Foggy, hazy, not inspired
Can't blame the heat. A "cool" spell blew through
I've decided to hit the pause button on the blog.  I've brought lots of book reviews, movie reviews, poetry, and my heart to you. But here lately, it's been memes and nothing of consequence. Time for a break. I shall visit your blogs, enjoy your posts, and wish  you well on new writing ventures. 

 I've been thinking

        I'm tired of thinking

                    About thinking

See ya later 


Friday, September 25, 2020

Finally Friday - but does that really mean anything?

 It's been quite a week at work - just stuff.  It's been quite a week in the news - scary stuff. 

I do have some book reviews I need to write for this blog, but I can't muster the typing strength to do so. 

This meme says it all for our upcoming fourth quarter. Instead of the sport saying, "Put me in coach, I'm ready to play," my heart, mind, and body is screaming, "Take me away."

So, on that note - have a super duper weekend everyone. Our weather in TX is supposed to be lovely; so I shall take a walk, sit on the patio, avoid news, and relax. (Maybe I'll mow the yard, Ray)

Be safe, y'all. 

Wednesday, September 23, 2020

Movie Review Madness - Tenet

 Movie Review Madness presents Tenet.     

WTF?   What just happened?   Ray - any clue?  What did we just see?

Safe movie going on Friday 4:30 show - we had the theater to ourselves. Wore masks. Truly no one peeked in. 

Director Christopher Nolan makes mind bending movies (Memento, Inception). I was prepared to be challenged and wasn't sleepy, etc.   I like John David Washington and he was good as the Protagonist. Robert Pattinson - the Brit sidekick spy - also good. Kenneth Branagh doing his best evil Russian accent as the evil rich dude ready to end the world - also decent. Elizabeth Debicki- pretty. 

The opening sequence at an opera house is a barrage of images - a terrorist assault, forward, backward, bullet reversals in time, then cars passing each other in time. The movie moves on and sometimes we're in the past, then present, then future? Each time, there's a goal and maybe an occurrence to change the path of ultimate world destruction. plus jargon about refractions, inflections, blah blah blah time travel..? I tried to keep track, I truly did. But, then it became too much and I checked my watch. 

The Dallas paper gave the movie an A. The New Yorker critic was not as enamored and one paragraph stood out and I agreed - the movie lacks that little bit of heart to make you care. I didn't care enough about these people and I kept wanting to, but nothing clicked. 

Time: 2-1/2 hours of our lives gone.  What just happened on that big screen?

Monday, September 21, 2020

Monday Morn Mourn

 These memes I grabbed say it all. 

I know her life influenced many. Let's hope her legacy is maintained and builds going forward. 

Another pivotal time in 2020 - man, this year is wearing out my brain. 

Good luck America

Friday, September 18, 2020

Friday Fuss and The Fix review

Serious fuss here - Ray above and me here in Orange Beach Alabama a few years ago. Sunny beach days, oh so long ago. 

Now this week -  OMG - the devastation I've seen in pictures from Hurricane Sally - too sad for words

2020 fuss.   Oh Gertrude - how right you are on so many aspects of 2020.  Good quote to ponder

 Friday Fuss book review escape -  The Fix by David Baldacci - 3rd in the Amos Decker/ Memory Man series is another fun quick read. It has plenty of twists and turns, and lots of heart. By now, you really care about Amos. You know he'll solve the murder mystery - it's the how and the hurt, the memories, and the strain, that keep you hooked. 

cover blurb - Amos Decker witnesses a murder just outside FBI HQ. A man shoots a woman execution style on a crowded sidewalk, then turns the gun on himself. The killing is baffling. Enter Harper Brown - an agent for DIA. The murder is part of an open DIA investigation, one so classified that Decker and his team aren't cleared  for it. But national security is urgent. An attack may be imminent. 

Buckle up for the ride. Stakes are high. Amos Decker's brain is searching, searching for clues and connections. The Fix is in and it's a winner.  Enjoy.

Wednesday, September 16, 2020

Latin Flavor Blog Hop featuring author Sherry Ellis

About the Author: Sherry Ellis is an award-winning author and professional musician who plays and teaches the violin, viola, and piano. When she is not writing or engaged in musical activities, she can be found doing household chores, hiking, or exploring the world. Ellis has previously published, Bubba and Squirt’s Big Dig to China; Don’t Feed the Elephant; Ten Zany Birds; That Mama is a Grouch; and That Baby Woke Me Up, AGAIN. Ellis lives in Atlanta, Georgia.


Author Links:

Website / Blog / Goodreads

fun to participate

Latin Flavors Blogfest



Prompt: What is your favorite Latin-flavor recipe?

Ray's sour cream chicken enchiladas - that's why I married him

Boil chicken, cool, then shred

Mix a container of sour cream with two cans of cream of chicken soup

Have a can of enchilada sauce (your temp - mild, medium, or hot) ready to pour on to some flour tortillas one at a time.  Fill each with shredded chicken and a spoon full of the sour cream/soup mix, roll up and place into a glass pan

Once the pan is full, pour the remaining sour cream sauce on top. Sprinkle with mozzarella cheese. 

Bake at 375 for 30 minutes or until top is browning/bubbling.

It's a very Americanized version of a Tex-Mex fave but it's darn tasty. 

No doubt a very fun read for kids 

Page Count: 96 
Digital Price: 3.99 
Print Price: 7.95



Amazon/ Barnes and Noble


Smashwords, Kobo


Amazon UK/ Amazon CA


BLURB: An Ancient Mayan civilization!


That’s what Bubba and Squirt find when they travel through the mysterious vortex for another wild adventure. There they meet archeologists who are unearthing priceless artifacts.


But someone is stealing them. And an encounter with the Tate Duende awakens magic within Bubba. Throw in the mysterious Alux and a new discovery and things get sticky.


Will Bubba and Squirt solve the mystery, or will they be stuck forever in the jungles of Belize?


 Thanks Sherry for allowing me to participate and promote your book.  Keep writing - where will Bubba and Squirt go next?

Monday, September 14, 2020

Monday Muse - The Warmth of Other Suns by Isabel Wilkerson

Just a great quote to ponder

 Just an excellent book to read and ponder. In between my light pool reads, I've been working my way through  The Warmth of Other Suns by Isabel Wilkerson.  This is a non-fiction book that reads like fiction as Wilkerson follows three main characters in their migration from the Jim Crow south.  

back cover blurb  From 1915 to 1970, six million black citizens made an exodus that changed the face of America. They fled the South for northern and western cities in search of a better life. The author interviewed more than a thousand individuals, gained access to new data and records, and wrote this definitive and vividly dramatic account of how these American journeys unfolded, altering our cities, our country, and ourselves. 

I really enjoyed this book and found it fascinating. Ida Mae Gladney,  from Mississippi fled to Chicago. There and parts north she and her husband worked hard,  raised a family, and still enjoyed her home cooking skills - like a mean cornbread. They just didn't look back. 

George Starling fled Florida before a lynching. Once in New York City, he became a porter on the train and road the rails the whole rest of his life, seeing the day when black folks did not have to move to a separate train car when they crossed into the South. 

Robert Joseph Pershing Foster, MD fled the South to California and worked hard to become the best doctor, have the best reputation and practice, raise his daughters to be the best. He was a gambler and an achiever, wanted acclaim, and attention. In a way, his soul could never be at peace with being a black man from the South. 

The history,  the lives, the aches, and sorrows. The hard work. The extra scramble. It's something I can't fathom. But I'm grateful for Isabel Wilkerson's words and work to help anyone understand what (black) Americans have encountered and endured in the 20th century, and appreciate the achievement of survival and growth for each generation.  The Warmth of Other Suns is a stunning book. 

Friday, September 11, 2020

Friday Reflect

 Generally on September 11th, I do a look back or salute to 9/11/2001 - certainly a day that changed our lives. Footage from that day still haunts. 

Now, 2020 is truly a year that is changing our lives forever. This is a pivotal year of ...something, anything. I don't know what - certainly above my pay grade. But definitely a year of defining what counts in our lives - health, family, friends, and life. 

Intimations by Zadie Smith is a small book - less than one hundred pages - full of short, timely essays that reflect these times. Ms. Smith is a talented deep writer and I've often had trouble with her novels. However, this book explores ideas, feelings, and questions prompted by the pandemic lock down. Submit to a new reality - or resist it? Time and work - the relationship? In our isolation, what do other people mean to us? This book clears a generous space for thought.  (cover blurb). 

Man, she made me think. And she made me say, "Damn, she really hit the nail on the head."

p. 17   Death comes to all - but in America it has long been considered reasonable to offer the best chance of delay to the highest bidder. 

p. 20  Out of an expanse of time, you carve a little area - that nobody asked you to carve - and you do "something".   Bake banana bread. Build a living room fort. Something to do. It fills the time. 

Zadie Smith wrote Intimations from her heart and soul.  It made me think, it made me nod, it made me say, "Damn."

Wednesday, September 9, 2020

Masked Movie Wednesday

 No, Alex Cavanaugh - I did not see Tenet yet....I dipped my toe into the movie pool with a shorter artsier flick - The Personal History of David Copperfield.  Ray was busy with watching final golf rounds, and I did want to see this movie. I've fond memories of reading Charles Dickens' David Copperfield. I had a Dickens phase back in junior high. 

So, ordered my Cinemark ticket on-line and it was on my trusty phone. I masked up, sucked it up, and ventured forth.  On Monday afternoon 12:30 pm, there were six people spread far apart in this theater. All masked. No one sneezed or coughed. I felt safer than in our grocery store. 

And it was SO nice to see previews and the movie on the big screen. When the lights went down - I was in bliss. 

Clever flick and good distillation of a long book with a ton of characters. Dev Patel is excellent as his fortunes go up and down, depending on family or his own wits. Tilda Swinton plays the eccentric aunt and Hugh Laurie is wildly amusing as Mr. Dickson. Peter Capaldi is that rapscallion Mr. Micawber. And Ben Whishaw is suitably creepy as Uriah Heep. Agnes is clever. Dora is ditzy. Through it all, Dev/David Copperfield shines. 

I was very entertained and ready for more. Ray and I shall venture out for Tenet this week. Previews have me excited for the fall/winter season. We shall see. I hope folks behave and the theaters keep up their new cleaning/air ventilating, etc. All such a crap shoot. But for two hours, I felt alive and engaged in the magic that is cinema. 

Monday, September 7, 2020

Monday Musings - Labor Day Version

 Happy Labor Day. I ran late on doing this post because I've been doing the opposite of labor. I've been lazy. Well, my version of lazy - still cleaned house, still mowed the back lawn while Ray did the front, still did laundry, get the drift. But I did not go to work today.

 Sunday night holiday night is the best. No alarm set. No planning ahead. Staying up a tad to watch our Dallas Stars hockey team win its first game in the Western Conference final. Also been watching U.S. Open tennis - that's been very interesting this year. Lots of new names - young up and comers with a chance to win. 

My other accomplishment this weekend is learning to use my new Water Pik without spraying down myself and the whole bathroom. It's been humorous. 

Set the stage: I am left-handed but I always brush my teeth right-handed due to my mother, and how she taught me. Now put a motorized thing squirting water into my right hand. Controlling the switch has been tricky for me. And it jets out surprisingly hard - I guess that's the point to rid the teeth of gunk. 

Anyway - I've got it figured out and I have to laugh. I look like I'm five years old - I hold the Pik with both hands and control it that way. Goofy as hell, but I don't have to wear a bathing suit to use it. 

Hope everyone is staying well, safe, and wearing that mask as needed. Or if you see me with a Water Pik in my hand, lower that face shield!

Let's zoom into autumn. 

Friday, September 4, 2020

Book Review - The Bitter Season by Tami Hoag

 Needed a poolside read and Ray had just finished this one. Said it was good. I've read Tami Hoag before and she's a reliable author. The Bitter Season served the entertainment purpose well. Tough characters who are fleshed out, a twisty turning plot, surprises along the way - it's everything you need for a murder mystery. 

Detective Nikki Liska is restless in her new position in the cold case squad.She's bored with the unsolved murder of a decorated sex crimes detective. She misses her old partner, Kovac, who's dealing with a double homicide of a university professor and his wife. And meanwhile, Evi Burke has a  lovely life - except her past is stalking her. A danger is bent on destroying the perfect life she was never meant to have (cover blurb). 

Trails of two crimes twenty-five years apart twist, cross, and converge - Kovac and Liska race to find answers before a killer strikes again. 

p.26 He hated this time of year, this bitter season of raw cold and gray skies, knifing winds, and days that grew shorter and shorter.  

p. 78 Kovac: Never judge a family by their address or bank account. And never underestimate the power of the American public to shock and disappoint you. 

The Bitter Season by Tami Hoag does not disappoint in this genre. Thumbs up as a poolside read. 

Wednesday, September 2, 2020

Letters Aloud - All Our Best by the DMA

 The Dallas Museum of Arts is presenting virtual programs now and for $10 I watched a program called Letters Aloud. This was presented in conjunction with a Seattle group of actors. This program was about perseverance in times of struggle - pandemic (1918) and racism (then and now). It was well done, with a good flow, and very interesting choices. 

W.E.B Dubois wrote a letter to his daughter at a boarding school in England. He wrote of her challenges as a black girl. It was quite moving. 

Margaret Mitchell and her mother wrote. Alas, Margaret did not make it home in time - her mother passed from the Spanish Flu. 

5/13/1958 - Jackie Robinson wrote a letter to President Eisenhower. In regards to the president's comment to have racial "patience", Robinson wrote respectfully, "No."

Another letter had Frederick Douglass writing to Harriet Tubman about her devotion to the cause. 8/29/1868

E.B. White 3/30/1973 wrote  in regards to hope, "Get up Sunday morn and wind the clock, as a contribution to order and steadfastness."

Good advice in these troubled times.  Wind the Clock.  Let's keep going.