It’s Monday! What are You Reading?

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It’s time once again for Kathryn’s weekly meme, “It’s Monday! What are You Reading?”, hosted at Book Date, where we share what we’re reading and have read over the past week.

Another fairly quiet, relaxing week –only watched 1 movie with my hubby. At least we had help with the heavy snowfall last week. And staying in where it was warm was the best thing to do.


What I Read Last Week

I read 8 books – a romance, 3 paranormal romances, two historical romances, a poetry book and a pix book.

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The Rose Garden by Susanna Kearsley. This was another reread of my favourite novel – this historical romance with time travel is so well written. I needed a time travel book for a reading challenge and this was the only one I wanted to read. I enjoy starting the new year with this exceptional novel.

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White Lies                                       Running Hot

2 paranormal romances by Jayne Ann Krentz. Continuing with the present-day Arcane Society series –both enjoyable reads.

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Portrait of a Scotsman by Evie Dunmore.  This was another in her historical romance series and it was so good.

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Midlife Witch Unexpected by Melle Amade. A fun paranormal novel, with an older heroine

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The Hill We Climb by Amanda Gorman. Her inaugural poem set in book form. Read it several times – so powerful.

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Love Everlasting by Tracey Alvarez. Really enjoyed this contemporary romance.

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I Have Cerebral Palsy by Mary Springer. Such a special picture book, full of information for young children. I reviewed this for Multicultural Children’s Book Day (Jan. 28th). So many wonderful books were highlighted.


What I’m Reading Now 

Year of Yes by Shonda Rimes (for my book club)

Becoming by Michelle Obama (starting this for my book club)


What’s Up Next

5 Little Indians by Michelle Good

OLW January Update


Lisa (of LisaNotes) has provided a place to share out experiences with our OLW – to be accountable, to keep it front and centre in our lives. This is our first check-inl

My One Word January Update:

For 2022, searching for my OLW (One Little World) proved to be a bit of challenge. I shared in a previous post (check here), picked numerous words but none seemed right.

Finally, though I settled on JOY, a word I had used in 2013. It was the right word then and I know it is the right word now.

I turned 70 a couple of weeks ago and I knew this year would challenge me (aside from all the upheaval in the world around.) I knew I wanted a word to lift me up. To give me hope and inspiration. JOY definitely does that.

My first step was to create my JOY canvas. It is my daily reminder to seek out joy, to savour the moments.


I then began a gratitude practice – to list 3-5 things I am grateful for every day.

I started a JOY journal as well. In this journal, I write in quotes and glue in articles and pictures that inspire me.

I began to create JOY cards, using my hubby’s old business cards. They are fun to do.


I have also started gathering JOY books:  Two so far:  The Joy Diet by Martha Beck and Joyful by Ingrid Fetell Lee

Here are a few of my favourite quotes so far:

Focus on the journey, not the destination. Joy is found not in finishing an activity but in doing it.  Greg Anderson

Find a place inside where there’s joy, and the joy will burn out the pain.   Joseph Campbell

Find joy in everything you choose to do. Every job, relationship, home … It’s your responsibility to love it, or change it. Chuck Palahniuk

To be joyful is a principle. It doesn’t change with emotions. Joy is an inner contentment despite all the circumstances.  Richard Daly


I am trying every day, to feel that joy, to be filled with joy. Some days more than others it is a challenge.  I will keep trying – It is well worth the pursuit.

“Our Own Backyard” Challenge


Welcome to the “Our Own Backyard” challenge, in which my friend Linda and I will share pictures of our yards during the seasons.

Same City
2 Friends
2 Yards

The idea is to document a part of our backyards every season for a year. Linda chose to document her beautiful linden tree.

Even though I have a huge evergreen in my yard, I am choosing to highlight the gardens in my front yard. As a corner lot, we really don’t have a back yard – more a side yard and a front yard.

While there are perennials there, right now they are snow covered, with dead blooms – these do make interesting shadows though. And we have snow – and very cold weather today (-16C)


The garden in the middle of the yard was added after we cut a birch down. Instead of a stump, we chose to create a garden. Come spring, the peonies and other plants will start to grow,


The garden to the right of the front door is narrow and over half of it is planted in lilies. Now, it is barren.


To the left of the door is a garden we have been adding to the past few years. But it still seems unfinished.


The tree though does dominate and provides shelter and shade, not only for us, but for the squirrels that run around our yard and actually attack the garden. There is even a bunny that crosses the yard as well.

I’ve caught one of the squirrels on film, but not the bunny, although I have been able to photograph footprints in the snow.


Then there are the birds – blue jay, cardinal, chickadees and doves that visit once in a while.

Notice the top of the tree though – with all the pinecones. I’ve heard the more there are pinecones, the harder the winter it will be. Fact or fiction??


Head on over to Linda’s blog to see what’s she’s documented this season.

I’m excited to share what my gardens will look like in the spring.

I’d love to see something from your yard.

Connect Five Friday – Reread Books?


It’s time once again for Connect Five Friday, hosted at Book Date by Kathryn – the meme where we share five book/reading things that connect in some way.

A blog I follow (Book Wanderer) took part in a weekly meme – Let’s Talk Bookish – where a question is posed and they answer it.

This week’s question intrigued me – Rereading books?

Several years ago, my answer would have been – not hardly at all. There were too many books I wanted to read – who had time to reread.

But the past few years have changed my thinking about rereading.

Here are 5 reasons why I reread a book:

  1. For comfort. I know the story or characters; I know the ending. There is comfort in that, especially when there is so much uncertainty and stress around. Rereading The Others series by Anne Bishop fit this exactly. I immersed myself in The Others’ world and could forget for a time the world around me.

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  1. To refresh your memory about a series. When you’re reading a new book for a series you haven’t read in a while. I reread A Desperate Fortune’ as her story “Weapon of Choice” in the anthology The Deadly Hours was a follow-up to this book. I wanted to reacquaint myself with the historical couple from this book.

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  1. For a book club or a presentation. When I have already read a book, I will often reread it so that I can be up-to-date with it when we discuss sit for a book club.
  1. To learn something new. A reread, especially of a non-fiction book, read at different times in your life, will often bring new meaning or a different perspective. Rereading  Gift From the Sea from Anne Morrow Lindbergh brought different insights last year, compared to when I read it 20 years ago.

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  1. Can’t get enough of a character, story, even series. Sometimes, nothing else seems good enough and none of the books I could read are as inviting as rereading an old favourite. I just finished a reread of A Rose Garden by Susanna Kearsley because I just had to return to that world, that couple.

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There were questions posed as well at Let’s Talk Bookish and they are worth considering.

Prompts: How many times is enough? Why re-read at all? Is re-reading just a comforting pastime? Or is there excitement to be relived? What kind of books do you re-read? Do you ever re-read books you don’t like in hopes that it will be better the second time? Were there any books you didn’t like as a child but liked as an adult, or vice versa?

Do you reread books? If so, which ones?

Review of “I Have Cerebral Palsy” – Part of the 2022 Multicultural Children’s Book Day

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I am honoured to be part of the 2022 Multicultural Children’s Book Day  -#ReadYourWorld, which takes place January 28th, 2022. This is the ninth year for this special celebration, in books. MCBD’s mission is to raise awareness of the ongoing need to include kids’ books that celebrate diversity in homes and school bookshelves.

(Note: I was provided with a review copy by Star Bright Books, for which I am thankful. The following is my honest review of the book)

My Review:

I Have Cerebral Palsy is Sydney’s delightful story about her life with cerebral palsy. As she says:

I am a kid like you, but I do have to do some things differently.

She explains what cerebral palsy is, how it affects her and how others with CP may be affected. She explains what muscle spasms are, what physiotherapy she does and why it is needed.

She is very open about the challenges she faces, but she is always upbeat. She may have trouble moving and talking easily, but it doesn’t stop her from enjoying life fully.

Sydney shares so many of the things she loves to do – from riding a bike, reading, drawing to playing baseball.

Yet she can have her feelings hurt, especially when she is having a facial muscle spasm. She wants people to know that she doesn’t laugh when people are different. As she says:

Differences are what make people interesting.

I thoroughly enjoyed Sydney’s story and would highly recommend it. Thank you, Sydney, for your candor and sweetness.

About the Book:

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I Have Cerebral Palsy

By Mary Beth Springer

Picture Book • Ages 4-8 • 32 pages

Hardcover: 978-1-59572-750-3 ($16.99)

Paperback: 978-1-59572-751-0 ($7.99)

(Also available on Amazon and


Meet Sydney, a girl who likes the same things other kids do–riding her bike, playing baseball, and hanging out with her friends. Sydney also has cerebral palsy, which makes walking, talking, and using her hands difficult.

Sydney shares her first-hand account of life with cerebral palsy in I Have Cerebral Palsy so that others can understand what her life is like. Most importantly, Sydney wants her story to help other kids feel more comfortable around people with disabilities. Additional resources are available to learn more about cerebral palsy and organizations that help children with disabilities and their families lead active lives.

About the Contributor

As a child growing up on a farm near La Crosse, Wisconsin, Mary Beth Springer enjoyed trips to the library. She started writing for magazines and newspapers in 2001. I Have Cerebral Palsy was written to increase the understanding of what cerebral palsy is, thus enhancing the meaningful interaction between physically challenged and non-physically challenged children.

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Top Ten Tuesday – New to Me Authors in 2021


Top Ten Tuesday is a weekly linkup of book bloggers hosted by That Artsy Reader Girl.

This week, the topic is “New-to-Me Authors I Discovered in 2021”

I discovered so many great authors last year. Here are 10:

Jen De Luca – So enjoyed her “Well Met” series.

Julia Quinn – Finally got into reading the Bridgerton series last year

J.C. Andrijeski – Love her Vampire Detective Midnight series.

Deborah Wilde – Great paranormal series Magic After Midlife, with older female protagonist, with snark.

Kelly Bowen – Great historical romance series – A Season For Scandal

Tamara Leigh – Very intriguing medieval series – Age of Faith

Nikki Lynn Barrett – Enjoyable contemporary romance series

Kay Lyons – Another enjoyable contemporary romance writer

Stephanie Butland – Loved her “The Curious Heart of Ailsa Rae. Plan to read more.

Jennifer Ryan – Enjoyable contemporary romances, with a western them.

It’s Monday! What are You Reading?

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It’s time once again for Kathryn’s weekly meme, “It’s Monday! What are You Reading?”, hosted at Book Date, where we share what we’re reading and have read over the past week.


A quiet, relaxing week – even watched 2 movies with my hubby. Date nights at home!


What I Read Last Week

I read 4 books – a Christian romance, 2 paranormal romances and a scifi/fantasy.

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The Prescient by J.C. Andrijeski. This was the third in her Vampire Detective Midnight series and I am hooked. Still 2 to go.

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Sizzle and Burn by Jayne Ann Krentz. This is a present-day Arcane Society novel, in her series – another enjoyable read.

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Driftwood Bay by Irene Hannon. I do enjoy her Hope harbor series and this one was a great read.

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Hot Hex by Aurora Grey. It was hot but a fun read.


What I’m Reading Now 

Portrait of a Scotsmanby Evie Dunmore

Year of Yes by Shonda Rimes (for my book club)

Becoming by Michelle Obama (starting this for my book club)


What’s Up Next

5 Little Indians by Michelle Good

Connect Five Friday – Time Travel Books


It’s time once again for Connect Five Friday, hosted at Book Date by Kathryn – the meme where we share five book/reading things that connect in some way.

Several of the reading challenges I participate in, have “time Travel” as their category for January. As I was checking possible titles, I discovered several on my Kindle that I have not read.

Here are 5-time travel ebooks I can choose from:


Dreamspell by Tamara Leigh. This is the one I am reading now and enjoying.

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The Ruby Brooch by Katherine Lowry Logan

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Echo in Time by Lindsey Farleigh

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Touched by Time by Zoe Matthews and Jade Jenson

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Lachlan by Hazel Hunter

I’ve read a number of time travel books. Here are 5:

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The Rose Garden by Susanna Kearsley. This is my favourite book/author and one I have reread a couple of times. Kearsley has written numerous time travel books or dual history books – and all are exceptional reads.


Outlander by Diana Gabaldon (and then her whole series)

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A Discovery of Witches by Deborah Harkness. So enjoyed this series.

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Beyond the Highland Mist by Karen Marie Moning.  Another Highland time travel series, all enjoyable.

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The Time Machine by H.G. Wells. Had to include this – probably one of the first.

I also have at least 5-time travel books on my TBR shelves:

11/22/63 by Stephen King

Time Traveler’s Wife by Audrey Niffenegger

Kindred by Octavia Butler

The Night Circus by  Erin Morgenstern

A Breath of Snow and Ashes by Diana Gabaldon

What time travel books have you read?

Book Tag Thursday

Book Tag Thursday: Anonymous Bookaholics Tag

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I do enjoy these book tags but don’t participate that often. This one struck my fancy when I saw it at Life of a Female Bibliphile and couldn’t taking part.

  1. What do you like about buying new books?

Besides knowing I am the first one reading it, it is knowing that I am supporting an author by buying their book.


  1. How often do you buy new books?

I usually buy 1 or 2 a month, although I often go to a thrift store to buy several more.


  1. Bookstore or online book shopping: which do you prefer?

Before the pandemic, I preferred wandering the bookstore and checking out new books. Now, I order on line and have them delivered.


  1. Do you have a favorite bookshop?

I used to love a little bookstore at our mall, but it went out of business. Now I rely on Chapters/Indigo.


  1. Do you pre-order books?

I have only done this a few times, but I keep track of when a book I want is published and watch for it stores.


  1. Do you have a monthly buying limit?

Not really. I know I should but I know my limit and I am pretty good at keeping in that range.


  1. How big is your wish list?

Huge! I have a notebook and I write down books recommended by other bloggers, the newspaper, librarians. I try first to get them from the library though.


  1. Which three books from your wish list do you wish to own right now?

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The Vanished Days by Susanna Kearsley (it isn’t available in Canada yet!)

Once Upon a Wardrobe by Patti Callahan.

The Firekeeper’s Daughter by Angeline Boulley



I am tagging anyone that wants to participate!


It’s Monday! What are You Reading?

its mondayit2527s2bmonday25212bwhat2bare2byou2breading

It’s time once again for Kathryn’s weekly meme, “It’s Monday! What are You Reading?”, hosted at Book Date, where we share what we’re reading and have read over the past week.

Well, great news – my hubby is now home. Last Tuesday, the infectious disease dr. came in, told him he could go home after dialysis. So about 6 pm, we were able to take him home! Thank God – and thanks for all the lovely wishes and concern. He is doing well and getting stronger every day.

Even reading is more enjoyable.

What I Read Last Week

I read 6 books (plus 4 pbs)– 3 romances, a paranormal (historical) and 2 fantasy historicals.


Soulless by Gail Carriger. What an interesting, unusual read. Part fantasy, part steampunk, part mystery, part alternate history

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Second Sight by Amanda Quick.   A paranormal, historical fiction that proved a fun read.

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Second Chance Christmas by Lori Wilde. This was her latest in the Twilight series which I really enjoyed reading.

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Must Love Babies by Kelly Hunter. A contemporary romance I enjoyed as well.

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How to Marry a Werewolf by Gail Carriger. This was another varied genre by Gail Carriger and a fun read.

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For the Love of the Dame by Miriam Allenson. This debut romance was such a perfect read – loved it.

I read a 4 picture books as well, as part of Storystorm)


What I’m Reading Now 

Year of Yes by Shonda Rimes (for my book club)

Becoming by Michelle Obama (starting this for my book club)


What’s Up Next

5 Little Indians by Michelle Good