The Sunday Salon: Hot

It is blazing hot here in Southern California My sinuses don’t know what to think. First it’s hot and dry, then it’s hot and humid and today it seems to be dry and humid which is impossible. Because of it, I have a raging headache and nothing I take seems to touch it.

In the big scheme of things though, life is going pretty well. After hitting church by myself, no one wanted to go with me, I came straight home, enjoyed a salad and some leftover gluten-free pizza and pretty soon I am going to find myself a comfy spot and take a nap. My head hurts too much to read right now but maybe a nap will do the trick.

Rehearsals for Annie begin tomorrow (Monday) and on Wednesday, the audition process begins. It’s always an exciting time.

Sunday Salon

Let’s see, what else is going on? Well, we had a lovely dinner last night. The Teen’s girlfriend and family came over for pizza and salad. We grilled peaches for dessert, topped with cinnamon butter and vanilla bean ice cream. It was really good. I meant to take a picture but I gobbled it up before I could.

What am I reading?

Well, I finished The Sparrow for the read along Trish was hosting. It’s quite a book. After reading it I felt slightly beat-up and needed something with a lighter tone so I picked up The Way Inn by Will Wiles. It’s a crazy book. I find it funny but the reviews are not that great which has me wondering about the end, of which I am almost to.

Next up? The Bone Clocks.

What am I cooking?

Not a thing. We had leftovers for lunch and I am not ready to even think about dinner. When it’s hot like this, food does not sound good. I’ve been thinking about Thanksgiving though, which is so weird considering it does not feel like fall here at all.

What am I watching?

I watched Pitch Perfect for the first time ever. The Girl forced me to watch it and I was not looking forward to it at all but I really liked it. I don’t know what I thought it was about but I had no idea it was about a choir. With my kids in theater and choir, I can’t believe I didn’t see it earlier.

I recorded a bunch of I Love Lucy episodes and plan to sit down and have a Lucy fest later this afternoon. Those shows are so comforting to me.

What are you up to today?

Oh, and if you don’t have reading plans for October join our read along! We are reading Bradbury’s Something Wicked This Way Comes and it’s going to be awesome! Scary carnival, guys. How can you resist?

Something Wicked This Way Comes button

The Sunday Salon: The Murakami Unboxing

Sunday Salon

Hello friends! OMG! Last week was THE most difficult week. Lots of stuff to deal with. Lots of deadlines. I was running all over heck with my head partially cut-off. I tend to hold it all in, so looking at me, most probably thought I was okay but inside I was losing my $hit. No kidding.

The highlight of the week was receiving my Murakami prize pack for the Fan Ambassador thing. I received it, fawned over the package and then fell into bed in an almost comatose state because I was so tired. The next day, I was going to tear it open but I thought it might be fun to record it even though I cannot stand myself on video. See how much I love you all?

Here is the “unboxing” in all its glory. This is a straight out of the camera recording and unfortunately, The Teen was out of focus with his camera skills in some places but that is what I get when I ask him to do it right after he wakes up.

As mentioned in the video, the giveaway details I am still pondering so look for it soon.

What am I reading?

With Murakami behind me (wiping a tear) I am diving into The Little Friend by Donna Tartt. I typically read more than one book at a time but I haven’t figured out which two to add to the one I noted above.

I keep mentioning an October read-along. It’s coming. It will be fun. It promises to fit the season perfectly. We will announce it soon.

What am I cooking?

I bought the most delicious Italian sausage to make some pasta. Sausage, sautéed with onions, garlic, sun dried tomatoes, mushrooms and a tiny bit of cream.

What am I watching?

We watched The Lego Movie which was actually very good. The Hub was not a fan at first, but he changed his mind about a quarter of the way through. It’s very different and very clever but still “kiddish” unless you are a huge fan of Legos. I know a lot of adults are.

I hope to hit church this morning and then the rest of the day is open. What do you have planned for today?

The Sunday Salon: Our Super Dry Summer

Sunday Salon

My kids started school this past week and it all went fairly well.  It was a short week for them and they eased into it okay. Of course, today I got a notification that all of the high schools in the area have been openly threatened on Instagram. Not something that a parent wants to read. Ever. I feel uneasy about it. I’ve given The Teen the drill which he immediately shot down in typical teen fashion.

I’m a mom. I worry. I can’t help it. Especially with all the active shooter training I’ve taken. I’d rather talk about it than brush it under the rug and regret it later.

As for work, things are picking. Students return on the 25th but they will be on campus next week paying for parking and straightening out their schedules so I will be working the information counter. Fun! I don’t mind working with the students but in my twenty years there, I have never worked the information counter before. I’ve been pretty exhausted lately due to some health stuff so I hope I can get through the two weeks alright.

Yesterday, we dropped The Teen off at the lake for a church event and the lake was 80 feet below normal! The photo you see below is the boat launch. I took a look at the lake and almost cried. You don’t realize how bad the drought is until you see something like this.

Southern California is in dire need of water. If you are the praying type, can you pray some? We are in mandatory water restrictions now. I don’t know what will happen to our property as we have a large yard and most of it is hillside. If it dies, it will be a major fire concern and there is no water to fight brush fires which makes it even more alarming.

I mean, look at it! As I said, that is the boat launch which is supposed to be IN the water. I feel as if we are the subjects of a dystopian novel. It’s very scary to look around and take it all in.

Castaic Lake

Photo Credit: Castaic Lake

What am I reading?

I am reading Murakami of course! The other day I was chosen as a fan ambassador. I am taking “ambassador” to mean a “super fan” but the best part is that I get a signed copy of the book and four copies of another book to giveaway. I can’t wait to get that box.

As for the book, Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki and His Years of Pilgrimage is probably the most quiet novel of his that I’ve read. I am over halfway through it and so far, it’s very good but a little different.

People often ask me which book of his to read first. If you want the full Murakami experience, I suggest diving into the books that put him on the map, Kafka on the Shore or The Wind-Up Bird Chronicle but those can also turn a reader away if you aren’t used to speculative fiction. So to be safe, I often recommend his short stories or After Dark. But this new book, might be a good choice too.

I also finished Peter Heller’s The Painter. Very, very good I still have to write the review up but I really liked it

What am I cooking?

Again, I have no food in my house. What is up with that? Yesterday, we ate out but today I might cook-up a stir fry. Of course, that means I have to hit the market which I absolutely dread. Grilling, is a possibility too but it was 103 yesterday and today will probably be the same. Not sure I want to deal with the grill in this heat.

What am I watching?

We watched Catching Fire last night. I liked it better than the first movie and actually, The Girl was totally into it. When we saw the first movie, she was bored with it and did not like the few violent scenes that they showed. This time around, she understood the story better. The Teen refused to watch it and chose to hang out in his room. He’s being anti-social again. I know that he eventually reads my Sunday Salons so I will wave to him right now. Waving.

I am looking forward to TV this fall. The Walking Dead returns on October 12 and it feels as if the weeks are flying by so it will be here before we know it.  I am also looking forward to American Horror Story: Freak Show which premiers October 8th. That show is freaky on its own but the theme this season is FREAK SHOW and just the idea of it is freaking me out

Are you starting to think about your October reading? Sandy and I have a little something planned for October. More on that later.

What are you up to today?

The Sunday Salon: School? What?

Sunday Salon

I am coming to you so late today. Why? No real reason. I just couldn’t get myself going this morning. We went to Concerts at the Park last night with friends. It was a very nice time but when I got home, I could not sleep a wink.

This morning I was groggy but got myself to church after a few cups of coffee. The Girl didn’t want to go but she came, grudgingly, and the service ended up being just what I needed. I’m glad we got to go because school starts this week and let’s face it, we all need a little bit of calm before the craziness of school begins.

I just can’t believe that summer is technically over for us.

What am I reading?

I started Desperation for my the Summer of King, but then it fell off my Kindle. I’m not sure what happened to it but I noticed last night that it’s back. CREEPY! When it disappeared, I started The Painter by Peter Heller. Very good. I also started Going Somewhere (a bicycle journey) which is starting off very strong.

This Tuesday, I will be reading the new Murakami book, Colorless Tsukuru Tazaki and His Years of Pilgrimage. FINALLY!! I tried to get a review copy. Failed. Tried to win the quote card contest, but could not compete with cheaters. Just the other day, I applied to be an ambassador for the book, still no word on that but no matter what, I will be reading it come Tuesday. It’s about freakin’ time!

What am I cooking?

Food has not been all that appealing to me lately. I didn’t do any cooking this weekend, except the strawberry shortcake I put together for the concert the other night. Tonight, we hit Chipotle for a quick meal.

What am I watching?

I watched a little of the Twilight Zone this weekend. The Girl and I also watched It’s Complicated and we all sat down to watch The Grand Budapest Hotel which was very good but The Girl was not impressed.

Right now, I am watching Huell Howser. Huell was well-known for showcasing California towns and parks. He passed away a few years ago but his shows are still on KCET and PBS so I love to watch them when they are on. California is such a large state. Even after living here all these years, there is still so much to see and experience so I love to watch his show for that reason.

What’s your week look like?

The Sunday Salon: A Great Movie, Lots of Shopping and My Gloomy Weather

Sunday Salon

Good morning, all! This weekend has been a good mix of busy and fun. I hit the mall with both kids in tow to pick-up a few things for school. I think The Teen is good now but The Girl needs a few more things. Still need to do the school supply run as we did not get to it yesterday because of this movie:

Guardians of the Galaxy

After all that shopping, we headed out to see Guardians of the Galaxy. I’m not sure what I expected but it was really good. The overall audience reaction was good too. Lots of laughs, good special effects and a nice movie for the entire family to see which is such a rarity these days.

Some not so good things, our garbage disposal went out as did our AC, which has been a lemon since the first day we put it in. The company that did the install is trying to make good on it, but that doesn’t make us any more comfortable. The humidity has been 63% and nearly 100 degrees and on Tuesday and Wednesday we have go without any air so they can isolate the lines. I am not going to be in a good mood, that’s for sure.

What am I reading?

I am about halfway through California by Edan Lepucki. I had hoped to be done with it by now but the entire day of shopping kind of sucked up my time. Today, we are going to church and will probably do the school supply run too. We’ll see,

What am I cooking?

Not sure. Once again my cupboards are bare. My kids are in that growth phase so I cannot for the life of me, keep food in the house. With the weather the way it is, gloomy yet hot as heck, what do you make? I sort of want soup but I also kind of want salad. Sigh.

What am I watching?

Besides Guardians of the Galaxy, I haven’t been sitting down long enough to see anything else.

What about you? How has your weekend been?

The Sunday Salon: Beach Weekend

Beach Reading

We finally hit the beach this weekend! Just a quick trip to our fave beach with plans to hangout, soak up some sun, read a little and then hit our fave Mexican restaurant on the way home.

We did all that, but it actually rained on us while at the beach. It was sunny and perfect and then the clouds blew in. It wasn’t a hard rain and man, we sure needed it but it got too cold for The Girl so we packed it up and headed out.

We are all trying to make the most of this weekend as this is the beginning of production week for Grease. All week long, The Girl has extended rehearsals and lots of last minute work to do before the show starts on Friday. We get to see the show Saturday night. We can’t wait.

I’d like to thank all of you for voting for me in that Murkami contest. The contest isn’t over but I can’t complete with click farms and cheaters so I’ve stopped promoting it. I really want that signed Murkami book but I am not going to resort to cheating to win it. I am all grouchy about it. I hate cheaters.

Sunday Salon

What am I reading?

I started The Martian this past week. Too many mathematical equations in the beginning almost turned me away from it for good. I am liking it more now, but still kind of wondering about all of the hype. 

I finished The Regulators. What a strange story. It’s King though so I shouldn’t be surprised. I liked it, but it surprised me a little with where it went. 

What am I cooking?

After all of the snacks and Mexican food we enjoyed yesterday, we are keeping it simple tonight with some grilled chicken and salad. 

What am I watching?

I watched the first episode of The Strain and boy, they weren’t kidding when they said it was graphic. I am liking it so far, much more than Under the Dome which bombed for me. 

I didn’t really get to see any movies this weekend besides Better Off Dead. Long live 80s movies. Remember that one? Silly, but fun. 

I had to rush through this post because my wireless access has crashed THREE times while writing it and I’ve lost about three versions of it already so if it seems a little abbreviated, that’s why.

What have YOU been up to this weekend?

The Sunday Salon: Book Club and a Concert

Concerts at the Park

It’s been a great weekend so far. Yesterday, my book club met to discuss The Goldfinch. I finished it in the nick of time. Seriously. I had a hard time reading that one steadily but I really, really enjoyed it and that last 5% on my Kindle was, well, amazing. It’s one of those books where you definitely feel as if you’ve been on a journey. I miss it a little bit.

Last night, we hit the first concert at the park. It was the largest crowd I’ve ever seen. You can see some of the crowd above. The band was a Journey tribute band and I must say, the lead singer sounded almost identical to Steve Perry. The music was awesome and the forty-somethings, holding each other and singing to Don’t Stop Believing was funny and cool at the same time. BOTH kids came with, which  made it extra nice. Yes, I am talking about The Teen!

Anyway, we snacked and lounged and hung out. It was the perfect way to end the day.

Today? No one feels like going to church except The Teen so he’ll go and I suspect we will end up at the bookstore or the market or both. You know how I hate the market. I really want the food to just appear but no matter how hard I wish, it never happens.

In other news, I entered this design contest to win a signed copy of Murakami’s new book. I’ve posted everywhere about it and will continue to do so until it ends on 8/8. I apologize in advance if you tire of seeing the posts but seriously, it’s two clicks and you don’t need to like a thing in order to vote. Voting can take place daily. I’ve seen  many of you vote already and I can’t tell you how grateful I am . To vote, click here.

Sunday Salon

What am I reading?

Now that I am done with The Goldfinch I am back to my Summer of King with The Regulators. I also realized that I never finished The Three. Probably not a good sign. I mean, I really thought I HAD finished it but looking at my Kindle I left it at 69%. Oops.

What am I cooking?

It has been pretty hot here. The only thing that sounds good right now, is maybe a foo-foo salad with candied pecans and feta or something like that.

What am I watching?

I got Better Off Dead in the mail yesterday from Netflix. I am anxious to share that one with The Girl and Teen.

What are you up to today? Are you reading a must-read book? If so, do tell.

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 518 other followers