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The Week in Review: 12.01.2017

December 1, 2017


Between the Covers

Finished last week:

Don’t let the fact that it’s written by National Geographic Kids fool you, WEIRD BUT TRUE!: CHRISTMAS: 300 FESTIVE FACTS TO LIGHT UP THE HOLIDAYS is for anyone who likes trivia and Christmas.  This fun book is printed on glossy paper and is filled with bright, colorful photos and illustrations.  It’s full of fun facts like, “In medieval times, holiday revelers feasted on stuffed peacocks and boar meat,” and “an American woman set the record for most Christmas trees chopped down in two minutes: 27.”  I’m sure my family was glad when I finished the book because I felt the need to share lots of fun facts from it.  This book would be great to share with your family during the holidays and would be fun to tuck away in a stocking.  (Review copy provided by Media Masters Publicity.)

SPACE BOY AND THE SNOW MONSTER by Dian Curtis Regan is a cute picture book about a boy with a big imagination.  Niko, his dog, and his toy robot are headed to their spaceship when the robot is captured by an evil snow monster who just so happens to look like Niko’s sister.  Niko and Tag head off to Planet Ice where his dog is captured as well so it’s up to Niko to save his dog and his robot.  I loved Niko and his imagination and thought the story was a lot of fun and think young readers will too.  Robert Neubecker‘s illustrations are fabulous and are sure to help keep readers engaged.  You don’t have to wait for a snowy day to enjoy this story of a creative little boy.  (Review copy provided by Blue Slip Media.)

THE GARDEN OF SMALL BEGINNINGS by Abbi Waxman is the story of Lillian Girvan, a young widow struggling to make a normal life for herself and her young daughters while she struggles with grief.  She’s an artist for a publishing company and has been tasked with illustrating a gardening guide by The Bloem Company.  At the suggestion of her boss, she signs up for a gardening course given by one of the Bloem sons and she learns so much more than she bargained for.  Lillian’s grief felt real to me and I thought she and the other characters in this sweet, charming book were wonderful.  I loved the way Waxman introduced each chapter with gardening tips and infused the story with humor.   (Review copy provided by Penguin Random House.)


Currently reading:


On the Screen

I was nervous about the Commonwealth Cup because the Virginia Tech – Virginia game is not only a big state rivalry, it’s a family rivalry as well.  The last time Virginia won was 2003 but their team is better than it has been in a while.  I was so glad to see Tech’s defense step up and win the game 10 to 0!

Off the blog

  • I had my annual mammogram bright and early Monday morning.  I don’t know what I was thinking when I scheduled it for then but I’m glad it’s over with.  I’ve already gotten the results back and everything’s normal.

  • I started working on one of the puzzles Vance gave me for my birthday but I haven’t gotten very far on it.

  • Our Thanksgiving cactus is blooming.  This plant has been mostly neglected for ten years but still blooms every year.

  • I worked on it a little each day and finally finished our Christmas tree last night.
  • I walked at least three miles every morning and averaged almost 19,700 Fitbit steps a day.

What’s going on in your corner of the world?

21 Comments leave one →
  1. December 1, 2017 7:52 am

    Your tree is beautiful!

  2. December 1, 2017 9:32 am

    Lovely tree 🙂

  3. December 1, 2017 9:48 am

    I continue to be impressed by how many great educational, but entertaining, books there are for kids.

  4. December 1, 2017 10:33 am

    Beautiful tree and cactus! And good for you for doing your mammogram; it’s so important that we do them! I’m interested to see what you think of the Scott Kelly book as that’s the kind of non-fiction I like–a story.

  5. December 1, 2017 11:41 am

    The Waxman book is one of my favorites this year. Your tree is beautiful!

  6. December 1, 2017 11:58 am

    Beautiful tree…and so is that cactus.

    I don’t like early morning appointments, either; I usually have blood work done first thing, since I’ve been fasting. But I always dread it.

    Glad all is well.

    Enjoy those books!

  7. December 1, 2017 12:05 pm

    I love the tree and cactus, and glad your test came back good.

  8. December 1, 2017 5:34 pm

    Your tree is lovely.

    I am working on tying up loose ends here at work as much as I can before my last day before break. i have until 12/14 but things get thrown at me last minute which require immediate attention (so they say). I don’t want any work calls while I am off.

  9. December 1, 2017 6:54 pm

    Jim is always glad when I finish a book I feel like sharing too much of (i.e., too much in his opinion, not mine!)

  10. December 1, 2017 6:56 pm

    You’ve had a very good week, Kathy, in many ways. The Christmas cactus has gorgeous blooms, and your tree is beautiful! We are getting our tree tomorrow.

  11. Lauren Becker permalink
    December 2, 2017 12:12 am

    That fact book sounds fun! I love learning random facts -and I really do share them with my family. They enjoy it too though. haha Aw, your Christmas tree is pretty!


  12. December 2, 2017 9:07 am

    Your Christmastree is super nice! 🙂 Love it.

  13. Patty permalink
    December 2, 2017 2:05 pm

    The tree is lovely, so happy your mammogram was ok, keep working on that puzzle! Your steps encourage me! I loved the Waxman book so much!

  14. Literary Feline permalink
    December 2, 2017 11:59 pm

    WEIRD BUT TRUE! sounds like a lot of fun. I am glad your mamogram results came back normal, Kathy. I need to schedule mine. I like to go early in the day to get it out of the way. I had hoped we would get a chance to put up our tree and decorate it today, but it didn’t happen. We were running around too much. Hopefully tomorrow.

    I hope you have a great week, Kathy!

  15. December 3, 2017 6:18 pm

    Weird but True and Space Boy are all coming up for me. I really enjoy The Garden of Small Beginnings and thought the way the author incorporated witty gardening into each chapter was fun.

  16. December 5, 2017 7:56 am

    It’s nice to see your tree up already, wow! The cactus too are so neat to see blooming during the holiday season. Very cheery. The Abbi Waxman book looks to be a good one, helpful too, I’ll look for it. thanks.

  17. December 6, 2017 4:05 pm

    My family did a Cat puzzle with books over Thanksgiving break. It was fun and challenging. LOL It was a group project.

  18. December 6, 2017 10:39 pm

    Oh Kathy, your tree is so beautiful. Thanks for sharing with us.Good luck on the puzzle.

  19. December 7, 2017 8:13 pm

    The Garden of Small Beginnings sounds delightful! My local library doesn’t have a copy, but maybe Santa will deliver it to me. 🙂

    Isn’t it nice to have your tree up and decorated? We put two up right after Thanksgiving and it’s been so wonderful to see them lit up in the evening as we sit in the living room enjoying our cocktails and reading. We’re also in the puzzle mode right now and are on our third Christmas puzzle (all three are Mary Englebreit designs).

    Thanks for the reminder to make an appointment for my mammogram. I need to find a new doctor since moving to Oregon and am not looking forward to that!

  20. December 8, 2017 4:05 pm

    I bought a Christmas cactus this year to remind me of my grandmother. There were tons of blooms but not flowers and all of the blooms have fallen off without blooming. I need your green thumb — haha!

  21. December 16, 2017 12:43 am

    Beautiful tree!

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