Saturday, March 24, 2018

I did not give up--just forgot



my Disclaimer:
I did not really forget to write this post 2 Saturdays ago--I was in Arizona and then I had grandkids and then the next Saturday I was in Las Vegas, so....this is what you get.  I have one week to read the book, because my opinion is due next Saturday, the last Saturday of the month.  Thank goodness for long months!





 I love joining in a monthly meme hosted by Michelle at  Because Reading is Better than Real Life, in which we put up 3 books on the first Saturday of the month, and then you readers, vote on which one I should read, I read and then I write a blog post on the last Saturday of the month.
Thanks for voting from my TBR list
This is so much fun!

This time the winner was:
The Women in the Castle
by Jessica Shattuck

from Goodreads:
Three women, haunted by the past and the secrets they hold
Set at the end of World War II, in a crumbling Bavarian castle that once played host to all of German high society, a powerful and propulsive story of three widows whose lives and fates become intertwined an affecting, shocking, and ultimately redemptive novel from the author of the New York Times Notable Book The Hazards of Good Breeding.

Amid the ashes of Nazi Germany s defeat, Marianne von Lingenfels returns to the once-grand castle of her husband s ancestors, an imposing stone fortress now fallen into ruin following years of war. The widow of a resister murdered in the failed July 20, 1944, plot to assassinate Adolf Hitler, Marianne plans to uphold the promise she made to her husband s brave conspirators: to find and protect their wives, her fellow resistance widows.

First Marianne rescues six-year-old Martin, the son of her dearest childhood friend, from a Nazi reeducation home. Together, they make their way across the smoldering wreckage of their homeland to Berlin, where Martin s mother, the beautiful and naïve Benita, has fallen into the hands of occupying Red Army soldiers. Then she locates Ania, another resister s wife, and her two boys, now refugees languishing in one of the many camps that house the millions displaced by the war.

As Marianne assembles this makeshift family from the ruins of her husband s resistance movement, she is certain their shared pain and circumstances will hold them together. But she quickly discovers that the black-and-white, highly principled world of her privileged past has become infinitely more complicated, filled with secrets and dark passions that threaten to tear them apart. Eventually, all three women must come to terms with the choices that have defined their lives before, during, and after the war each with their own unique share of challenges.

Written with the devastating emotional power of The Nightingale, Sarah s Key, and The Light Between Oceans, Jessica Shattuck s evocative and utterly enthralling novel offers a fresh perspective on one of the most tumultuous periods in history. Combining piercing social insight and vivid historical atmosphere, The Women in the Castle is a dramatic yet nuanced portrait of war and its repercussions that explores what it means to survive, love, and, ultimately, to forgive in the wake of unimaginable hardship.


I'll be back in 2 weeks to let you know how it is!
Thanks.


Saturday Snapshot - Postal Book Club


Saturday Snapshot is hosted by 
To participate in Saturday Snapshot: post a photo that you (or a friend or family member) have taken then leave a direct link to your post to West Metro Mommy Reads!   Photos can be old or new, and be of any subject as long as they are clean and appropriate for all eyes to see. How much detail you give in the caption is entirely up to you. Please don’t post random photos that you find online.

I participate in a 'postal book club' which is made from members of the Modern Mrs. Darcy Book Club, which I am also a member of.  In the postal book club, there are 5 in my group and each of us chose a book and a notebook to send to the next person in the group.  We have two months to read and write and send on....I, of course, will be sending right before the deadline, because that's my MO, so right now I have the book/notebook for the next two months and also the one I'm supposed to be sending by March 30.
It's been so much fun to see what others tastes are and--important to me---what their notebooks look like. I think I agonized over the notebook as much as I did the book. 


Just another old book club photo.
I'll be reading "Don't Let's Go to the Dogs Tonight"  in the next few days and mailing it on.

That's my snapshot for today.

Friday, March 23, 2018

The Friday Friend Cookbook



Speaking of the Friday Friend Cookbook Countdown... (I just posted previously today and it had been a very long time since my last one.)  Shelly presented me with the 'hardbound' copy of Volume 4.  I blog 'em, she Shutterflys 'em.

Look at all those fun "Friday Friends" on the cover!  It's great!



Shelly says she has trouble with the Title page so she decided to do a review of my sunglasses thru the ages.
I find it amusing because for at least 2 trips that I've taken with Shelly and April (Wallowa Lake, Boise) I've broken my cheap sunglasses and have had to buy some new ones.

She should start me a sunglasses fund!




Thanks Shelly for a great book!
I love it (them)
And one day I'll be done with this countdown--I promise.



Friday Friend Recipes #182 and #183 -- Pea Salad or Peas Pittsacado



My Friday Friend Cookbook Countdown #182 and #183!
(#willreallyfinishthissomeday)

My mom's Peas PIttsacado and
My cousin Linda's Pea Salad

and you know all the whys and wherefores of this countdown, right? Homemade cookbook, friends contributed, Handyman said I couldn't/wouldn't do it, I'll show him, yadda yadda yadda....


...and the rest is cookbook history!






Peas Pittsacado on the right, Pea salad on the left.  (I think)


Peas Pittsacado 
My Mom, Bev Hambelton


2 pkgs frozen peas (thawed)
1 cup sour cream
6 chopped green onions
6 slices bacon, cooked and crumbled
1/2 t salt
dash pepper

Mix together and refrigerate overnight,

vs
Regular Pea Salad 
My cousin, Linda Ornelas


16oz frozen peas
1/2 cup chopped celery
1 small onion, chopped
1 8oz can water chestnuts, chopped
3 oz real bacon bits
8oz sour cream
1/2 cup mayo
1 pkg dry ranch dressing

Mix al ingredients together. Chill several hours before serving (make sure peas have thawed)


I actually love both of these salads.  They are cool and crisp and fresh and remind me of summer.
Truth be told I would combine the two-- I love the real bacon of my mom's peas pittsacado (I just love saying/writing that word.  I think  my mom made it up!), but I love the ranch dressing of my cousin's version much better than just plain sour cream.


This is recipe #182 and #183--only 111 left to go!
That's all a lie!! Because I miss counted once and I still have many many more to go--- I've lost count and it's much too stressful for me to figure now. (sigh)

Okay, now, let me just say, I bet you are thinking this story should be about my mom and my cousin and the whole 'pea' salad comparison, but no, it is not.  This post is going to be about my sister-in-law, LeAnne.
Why?  Because my mom and my cousin have lots of recipes in this countdown and LeAnne has none. 
And she hates peas.
I just found this out and it saddens me.
Who the hell hates peas? 
Apparently a  lot of people, I'm finding out.
But why this in particular saddens me about LeAnne is-- that we are supposed to be old widowed ladies who live together
(I pray this never happens, not because I couldn't be her roommate, but it means her brother would have to die before me and I just don't want that to happen.  We've gotten a good laugh out of it for 40 years tho--we'll be roomates one day!)

But Wait!
Does this mean I cannot make peas ever again?
Buttered peas over my white rice (my mom always served this with Teriyaki steak--I think she had it at a Japanese restaurant once in 1961 and it stuck with her every since.  Don't knock it till you try it)
Creamed Peas and New Potatoes?
Peas and carrots?
Spilt Pea Soup!
Peas in my fried rice?
Peas in my Spanish rice?

OMG! What have I done? 
Committed myself to my old age with a non-pea lover!!
You know what?  I'm still going to make them--we'll be so old she won't remember that she hates them.

LeAnne's been a secret pea hater since I've known her--41 years!  I might have thought twice about asking her to be my maid of honor if I had known!

 (remember, it's not about the photos---it's about the story)

back in our crazy days.....before I knew about the peas!


She and her brother, my Handyman---secret family vegetable haters.  His was green beans.  Still is.  


40 years later with her granddaughter Alice, daughter Melissa, and me!








Saturday, March 3, 2018

What Should I Read Next?






Michelle says:

We sit for hours looking through our TBR lists wondering when we will ever get to that one book we were dying to read when we added it 3 months ago or maybe even a year. As our piles get bigger we realize there is just not enough time in a day to read all the books that we wanted to read. So I had a great idea, pick 3 books from my TBR Pile and have you all pick which one I should read next. This is a monthly MEME and you are more than welcome to join me. 




There are of course some rules, but if you want to join in go here to check them all out.

It's that time of month again friends---time to help me choose what to read next!
Here are 3 of my books chosen randomly off my bookshelf (okay, maybe not so randomly--I want to read ALL of them, and I want to read them right now!)
!

You know how it goes--I'll choose 3 books from my TBR list and you guys vote on which one I should read next and then I'll read it and report on it at the end of the month.

a word of warning...I've never been able, or taken the time really, to insert a poll in the body of this blog post, so...SORRY, but you are just going to have to vote with a comment.

I'll let you know next week, which one wins!


Which one should I read?





PS-it's March and I'm still here. 😉 of course I mean still here as in sticking with a monthly meme. Yay!
Okay, my books


A strikingly sincere portrait of a town and its buried secrets from an outstanding new voice in southern fiction.

In a North Carolina mountain town filled with moonshine and rotten husbands, Sadie Blue is only the latest girl to face a dead-end future at the mercy of a dangerous drunk. She’s been married to Roy Tupkin for fifteen days, and she knows now that she should have listened to the folks who said he was trouble. But when a stranger sweeps in and knocks the world off-kilter for everyone in town, Sadie begins to think there might be more to life than being Roy’s wife.

As stark and magnificent as Appalachia itself, If the Creek Don’t Rise is a bold and beautifully layered debut about a dusty, desperate town finding the inner strength it needs to outrun its demons. The folks of Baines Creek will take you deep into the mountains with heart, honesty, and homegrown grit.

Being shunned by Society gives Charlotte Holmes the time and freedom to put her extraordinary powers of deduction to good use. As “Sherlock Holmes, consulting detective,” aided by the capable Mrs. Watson, she’s had great success helping with all manner of inquiries, but she’s not prepared for the new client who arrives at her Upper Baker Street office.

Lady Ingram, wife of Charlotte’s dear friend and benefactor, wants Sherlock Holmes to find her first love, who failed to show up at their annual rendezvous. Matters of loyalty and discretion aside, the case becomes even more personal for Charlotte as the missing man is none other than Myron Finch, her illegitimate half brother.

In the meanwhile, Charlotte wrestles with a surprising proposal of marriage, a mysterious stranger woos her sister Livia, and an unidentified body that surfaces where least expected. Charlotte’s investigative prowess is challenged as never before: Can she find her brother in time—or will he, too, end up as a nameless corpse somewhere in the belly of London?





Set at the end of World War II, in a crumbling Bavarian castle that once played host to all of German high society, a powerful and propulsive story of three widows whose lives and fates become intertwined an affecting, shocking, and ultimately redemptive novel from the author of the New York Times Notable Book The Hazards of Good Breeding.

Amid the ashes of Nazi Germany s defeat, Marianne von Lingenfels returns to the once-grand castle of her husband s ancestors, an imposing stone fortress now fallen into ruin following years of war. The widow of a resister murdered in the failed July 20, 1944, plot to assassinate Adolf Hitler, Marianne plans to uphold the promise she made to her husband s brave conspirators: to find and protect their wives, her fellow resistance widows.

First Marianne rescues six-year-old Martin, the son of her dearest childhood friend, from a Nazi reeducation home. Together, they make their way across the smoldering wreckage of their homeland to Berlin, where Martin s mother, the beautiful and naive Benita, has fallen into the hands of occupying Red Army soldiers. Then she locates Ania, another resister s wife, and her two boys, now refugees languishing in one of the many camps that house the millions displaced by the war.

As Marianne assembles this makeshift family from the ruins of her husband s resistance movement, she is certain their shared pain and circumstances will hold them together. But she quickly discovers that the black-and-white, highly principled world of her privileged past has become infinitely more complicated, filled with secrets and dark passions that threaten to tear them apart. Eventually, all three women must come to terms with the choices that have defined their lives before, during, and after the war each with their own unique share of challenges.

Written with the devastating emotional power of The Nightingale, Sarah s Key, and The Light Between Oceans, Jessica Shattuck s evocative and utterly enthralling novel offers a fresh perspective on one of the most tumultuous periods in history. Combining piercing social insight and vivid historical atmosphere, The Women in the Castle is a dramatic yet nuanced portrait of war and its repercussions that explores what it means to survive, love, and, ultimately, to forgive in the wake of unimaginable hardship.



Thanks!


I'll be back next Saturday.

vote in the comments please.





Friday Friend Recipe #209 - Sneaky Pete

Come with me as I continue to countdown my Friday Friend Cookbook! What is it, you may ask? In a nutshell... ...