Sunday, August 8, 2010

The Sunday Salon: End of Summer Plans and an Award

Summer may be winding down, but there is still time to get through a few more books in the pile. If all goes according to plan, the last few pages of Mariana will be turned as I drink my second cup of coffee this morning. What a lovely book this is! It would make a perfect "hammock read" but, no, that's not me in the photo. (photo credit)

Other reading this week included the graphic memoir Persepolis by Marjane Satrapi (my review) and some back issues of The New Yorker. I won't embarrass myself by telling you how many more are still stacked up!

Just past the halfway point, The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks by Rebecca Skloot continues to keep me hanging on every word. However, my audiobook progress suffered a severe setback last weekend when the iPod ended up in the swimming pool and failed to respond to every lifesaving measure we could think of! Purchasing a new one is near the top of my agenda this week. I'm considering upgrading to the iPod Touch. Do any of you have one?

At the top of the tbr pile:
The Happiness Project by Gretchen Rubin (after many months, my hold come up at the library)
Summer by Edith Wharton
Persepolis 2 by Marjane Satrapi

Other exciting news:
Amanda at The Zen Leaf is hosting a Bleak House Read-along beginning at the end of the month. The book has been on my shelf for several years and I'd already decided it would be my next Dickens. This is too good to pass up. Plus, she made a great button! Check out all the details here.

Finally, Karen from Books and Chocolate has given me The Versatile Blogger Award.

If you haven't met Karen yet, you really should. She loves classics and writes the most wonderful reviews. Food (and food writing) is also high on her list, and I have a feeling she is a very accomplished cook. Thank you so much for this award, Karen!

My task is to share seven things about myself, so here they are:

1. I left a career as a clinical pharmacist over fifteen years ago to stay at home with my three daughters. The oldest is now 20 and the twins are 17, but I never made it back to pharmacy - just too busy!

2. I was totally science-overloaded after college and turned to French Cooking classes for fun. I still love to cook and started a cooking blog with my daughter last spring.

3. I can watch sports for hours! From kindergarten kick-about (soccer) to college basketball, I've been to literally thousands of my kids games. I will watch almost any sport and wish March Madness lasted all year long. My husband likes to say I would have made some sports fan a great wife.

4. I grew up as the musician in a family of athletes.

5. I love to travel, but have lived in the same small town for 22 years.

6. Nothing complements good food like good wine. My husband is slowly transforming me into an oenophile.

7. I met my husband on a psychiatric ward, but wouldn't talk to him at first... it's sometimes hard to tell patients from staff! We will celebrate our 25th wedding anniversary in November.


  1. Hey JoAnn, Congrats on the Award, I've been enjoying everyone's responses this morning. I'm actually glad summer is winding down as it was too hot for me, and I love the cool, crisp days of fall.

    Have a great day!

  2. Congratulations. I'm glad your husband turned out to be staff. ;-)

    I like the new photo at the top of your page, too.

  3. My sympathies on the loss of your iPod you poor girl. My nano is hanging in there but The Heiress has a touch and loves it! That's the route I'll take the minute (and I do mean the minute) my nano kicks it.

    Rubbing my hands with glee over the thought of your Bleak House posts!

  4. I am VERY anxious to read the Happiness Project (I have been reading her blog for a few months now). I look forward to your review

    Congratulations on the award! I have not had the pleasure of visiting Karen's blog, but I will be a loyal follower now :)

    Have a great week.

  5. A hammock sounds wonderful about now! Too bad about your ipod--hopefully you can get a new one soon.

  6. I'm so sorry your iPod went swimming! I have an iPod Touch and I've used it for audiobooks. Works fine. I love my iPod!

  7. Congrats on the award, and I'm so glad that you're joining us for Bleak house!

  8. My iPod has gone swimming before, and it pushed me immediately into a malaise. I had to get a new one. They cut you a break on the price if you just get a unit and not all that other stuff that comes with it. My only advice is just be sure you get a device with enough room. I had a smaller iPod and it wouldn't hold enough of my audio books plus music. I don't think 16 gig is enough. The problem with the Touch is that for all that it has, there is no camera, which for the price is kind of a rip-off.

  9. Sorry about the ipod; maybe the next generation will come with floating devices (only partly kidding). CONGRATULATIONS on your award and your upcoming anniversary.

    Wish I had that hammock, though...

  10. Congratulations on your award! I love to watch sports, too, but college football is my favorite.

  11. Congrats on the award...I like reading the seven things. Wow, I'm impressed! A pharmacist.

    I hope you enjoy The Happiness Project...I did, but some others didn't.

    Here's my salon:

    (I've also added my link to the Name/URL box)

  12. Thanks for sharing a bit of yourself! Congrats on your upcoming 25th--a real accomplishment in today's world! (we've been married 31 years)

  13. Congratulations of your award! I very much enjoyed reading your seven things. Also, I look forward to your thoughts on Summer - I've been on the lookout for short classics and am considering that one myself.

  14. Congratulations on your well-deserved award! The best part of this one has been the stories everyone has to tell about themselves. Short but a lot can be said about a person when they condense themselves to a few well-chosen bits. And yours does seem such a happy life. Happy reading!

  15. Forgive me if I left this commnet already - I am having problems with my internet connection . . .

    I love # 7 - what a great beginning for you and your husband!

    I am interested in your thoughts on Summer - Ethan Frome is a favorite of mine and I want to read more Edith Wharton.

  16. "end of summer"??! No, say it isn't so! :)

    HENRIETTA LACKS is a fascinating story, isn't it?

    I hope you're able to get the replacement device you want (I don't have an iTouch, can't give you any input ... I listen almost daily on my OLD iPod)

  17. Congratulations on the award!

    You know, I could never upgrade to an iPod Touch because I need the space a classic iPod gives me. I know it sounds spoiled, but between my boyfriend and me, we could never get our CD collection on a smaller disk space.

  18. Diane - This has been a very hot summer. I'm actually looking forward to fall- it's my favorite season.

    CB James - Yeah, I figured he was staff after we ran into each other on the elevator and in the cafeteria. Didn't want to take any chances right away though;-)

    Darlene - I've decided to go with the touch, and will start Bleak House right after Summer. What a HUGE book!

    Molly - So glad you visited Karen's blog. It is one of my favorite discoveries this year!

    Stephanie - We're planning a trip to the mall on Wednesday. Ipod #1 priority!!

    Leeswammes - I've decided to go with the touch and am planning a trip to the mall on Wednesday.

    Amanda - Can't wait for Bleak House! Will finish up a few more books and then get started.

    Sandy - My ipod was pretty old and in need of upgrading... think I'll go with the touch. Thanks for the advice (can't believe there's no camera!)

    DS - Maybe you should write to apple and suggest that feature... I'd pay a little extra for it ;-)

    Bermudaonion - I'm a die-hard college basketball fan, but football comes in a close second!

  19. Laurel-Rain Snow - Have just read the first couple chapters of The Happiness Project and like it so far, but a lot of it seems like common sense.

    Kim - Thanks... time flies when you're having fun :-)

    Nymeth - Just started Summer today and like it so far, but I'm also a big Edith Wharton fan.

    Frances- Thank you. I've enjoyed reading all the "seven things" people have written, too.

    Booksnyc - The girls love to tell people that their parents met on the psyche ward! Summer is very good so far. I love Edith Wharton and The Custom of the Country is my favorite.

    Dawn - I am LOVING Henrietta Lacks. It could end up my #1 nonfiction read/listen this year. Now if I can just hurry and get another ipod...

    Iris - I noticed there are upgraded iPod touches that have more space. I will use it primarily for audiobooks, so that should work for me.

  20. I just finished reading Maus, which like Persepolis, is also a wartime graphic novel that is included on some high school/college reading lists. I haven't read Persepolis yet but it's on the list.

    Your pic makes me totally miss having a hammock.

  21. Everybookandcranny - I keep debating about Maus, but I know I'll get to it eventually.


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