It’s Monday and Happy New Year!


It’s Monday! What Are You Reading? is a place to meet up and share what you have been, are and about to be reading over the week. This meme started with J Kaye’s Blog   and then was taken up by Sheila from Book Journey. Sheila then passed it on to Kathryn at the Book Date



I have been away from this blog for a while. Luckily there had been scheduled #monthoffaves posts that covered my a$$ for a bit. But here I finally am, on the very first morning of the brand new year, typing up this post in advance for tomorrow.

What have I been up to? Well in the past couple of days, being sick. The kind of cold/migraine combination that had me lying in bed or on the sofa for most of the morning, I attribute it to the long drive back from San Diego. I really suck at road trips – it tends to give me a bad migraine!

What a difference a few days make. First day

A couple of days later

But San Diego was just lovely. Except that the weather sucked on our first couple of days there (blustery cold winds, and it even snowed on the 5, closing it for several hours – luckily we hadn’t left on Saturday!) so we mostly kept close to the rental home. We did venture out for a walk near the beach, where a kite surfer was doing some crazy stunts on the crazy big waves.

We had a Trader Joe’s Christmas dinner! That is, most of the food came from Trader Joe’s, except the ham which was from Von’s. But it was still a yummy dinner, and the kids got to open a present each for the eve.

Christmas Day saw the opening of gifts (at least those I had brought over with us), and a day at Seaworld. It sure was crowded!

Boxing Day found us at the USS Midway. We had been there before when my older boy was about 1 and it wasn’t easy carrying a very young kid around up and down the steep stairs so we hadn’t explored much of the aircraft carrier. This time with two boys and two grandparents, we had a good time wandering around pretty much all over, and the boys completed a kids’ quiz to get some pilot wings. They were very pleased.

After the boys discovered that the rental home had some beach toys, beach chairs and other supplies in the laundry room, they continually bugged us for a day at the beach. We were after all just two houses down from the beach! It was definitely such a wonderful vacation home (run by Bluewater Vacation Homes, if you’re interested – they were also really good at checking on us and sending people out to the home when the wifi wasn’t working).

And so finally, on Tuesday, the boys had their day at the beach. And it was such perfect weather too!












Good Girls Revolt on Amazon Video, a show about women working at ‘News of the Week’ (based on Newsweek) in 1969, when women are given the jobs as ‘researchers’, that is, chasing down the sources and the stories for the male journalists, and being paid less and not being recognized as writers i.e. no byline. Based on a book by the same name, the full title of which probably describes the story a lot better: The Good Girls Revolt: How the Women of Newsweek Sued their Bosses and Changed the Workplace. goodgirlsrevolt

Of course after I enjoy the first episode, I learn that the show has been cancelled! 😦


I think I made a mistake during the road trip – I hadn’t downloaded any audiobooks and with my migraine, an audiobook would have definitely helped. Can you recommend me some?


Leftover gingerbread cookies!
Also homemade salmon poke bowl with soicy ponzu




Oxtail stew perhaps?

Chicken rice.


The Bout of Books schedule

The best writing advice of 2016 (The Atlantic)

A long-term challenge – reading around the world (Howling Frog Books)

Last week:

I read:

Palimpsest – Catherynne M Valente

The world she has created is both seductive and mesmerizing. But I feel that the plot sometimes got lost in all the beauty and mystery that she is weaving into her world-building.

The Invisible Library – Genevieve Cogman

This was a book that didn’t do enough world-building. It might not have been fair, moving from Palimpsest and its beautiful writing to The Invisible Library which didn’t seem to delve deep enough into its characters or its worlds.

I posted:

#amonthoffaves2016 – Books that blew my mind

#amonthoffaves2016 – Fave covers

#amonthoffaves2016 – Reading challenges



  1. hm. I just started The Others series by Anne Bishop on audio and it is pretty good so far. Where’d You Go, Bernadette was fun on audio. Mira Grant’s Newsflesh series is really good on audio. I really liked Black Rabbit Hall. These are just some of the books I listened to in 2016. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Aw, poor you with your migraine! I hope you’re feeling better now — road trips are okay for me but I know a lot of people who get sick on them. Terrible! At least it looks like y’all had a great trip, and as always, your many foods look delicious. Happy New Year!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Happy new year! Well I suppose it’s at least *just* a migraine and not like I spend the entire road trip throwing up or something! 😛


  3. It’s always interesting to see how other people spend their holidays – what fun! Delicious food, beautiful scenery, and adorable children. And books. 🙂
    Happy New Year!

    Liked by 1 person

  4. You went to the beach for Christmas! I’m so jealous. I love the beach. I want to go to the beach. Lovely pictures as always. Adorable children. Mindy Kaling’s book is pretty good on audio.


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