Sunday, July 15, 2018

What I'm Reading ~ 7/16/18

Today I'm reading:

Marianne Daventry will do anything to escape the boredom of Bath and the amorous attentions of an unwanted suitor. So when an invitation arrives from her twin sister, Cecily, to join her at a sprawling country estate, she jumps at the chance. Thinking she'll be able to relax and enjoy her beloved English countryside while her sister snags the handsome heir of Edenbrooke, Marianne finds that even the best laid plans can go awry.

From a terrifying run-in with a highwayman to a seemingly harmless flirtation, Marianne finds herself embroiled in an unexpected adventure filled with enough romance and intrigue to keep her mind racing. Will Marianne be able to rein in her traitorous heart, or will a mysterious stranger sweep her off her feet? Fate had something other than a relaxing summer in mind when it sent Marianne to Edenbrooke.

What are you reading?


P.S.  Come back Tuesday and join in my new feature "Book Club Tuesday"!



Song I'm Loving ~ The Breakup Song by Francesca Battistelli

I was a bit confused when I first saw the title of this song being played on SiriusXM The Message.  Until I really listened to the lyrics.

Now, I'm totally in love!


Saturday, July 14, 2018

Book Review ~ The Reluctant Duchess by Roseanna M. White



 Will Fleeing the Scottish Highlands Only Leave Her in More Danger?

Lady Rowena Kinnaird may be the heiress to a Highland earldom, but she's never felt good enough--not for her father, not for the man she thought she'd marry, not for God. But after a shocking attack, she's willing to be forever an outcast if it means escaping those threatening her life.

Brice Myerston, the Duke of Nottingham, has never been one to shy away from manor-born ladies, yet the last thing he needs is the distraction of the newly introduced Lady Rowena. He has enough on his plate having recently come into possession of a rare treasure for which many would kill, yet those around him seem intent on pairing him with this desperate but beguiling girl.

Rowena is reluctant to marry this notorious flirt. And when she learns that Brice is mixed up in some kind of questionable business with a stolen treasure, she fears she'll end up in more danger than she fled.

My Thoughts:
This is the second book of the "Ladies of the Manor" series.  I loved the first book, "The Lost Heiress" so much that I went straight into reading this one.
I love reading stories set in Scotland and England.  "The Reluctant Duchess" starts out in the Scottish Highlands and ends up in Brighton, England with many stops along the way.
I was very curious what would happen with the red diamonds, the "Fire Eyes".  I won't give too much away but I will say that Lady Pratt is still after them.  There was also a another closer enemy that really took me by surprise.
Amidst the mystery and intrigue was the romance between Rowena and Brice.  It most definitely was a reluctant match but I loved how Brice was so completely trusting in his faith that the marriage was the right thing to do.
This book took me a while to read because I wanted to find time to read it when I could fully devote my attention to the book and really sink in.  No quick chapters for me on this one.
I hope to get my hands on Book 3 of the series and read Ella's story soon!


Friday, July 13, 2018

Saturday 9 ~ I Love Lucy ~ 7/14/18

I Love Lucy (1951)
Unfamiliar with this week's tune? Hear it here.

1) Before today, did you know that the "I Love Lucy" theme had lyrics?

No, I did not!

 2) Since its premiere in 1951, I Love Lucy has never been off the air. Are you a fan?
I've watched my fair share of I Love Lucy although not for quite a while.

 3) On the show, Ricky Riccardo supports his family by performing in a nightclub. Do you know anyone in show business?
Not personally.

 4) Lucy and Ricky's best friends are Fred and Ethel, their landlord and his wife. Are you friendly with your neighbors?

We live in the country but we are friendly enough with the neighbors to wave while passing in the car.

5) One of the most popular episodes has Lucy and Ethel working on the conveyor belt at a chocolate factory. When did you last have chocolate?   
Yesterday.  I had a donut with Peanut Butter filling and Chocolate Icing.

 6) Another famous episode has Lucy promoting Vitametavegimin. This tonic is made with vitamins, meat, vegetables -- and 23% alcohol. Do you read the ingredients statement before you take an over-the-counter medication? Or do you trust that it's safe because it's on the store shelf?
I confess that I don't usually read all the ingredients.

7) I Love Lucy was filmed before a live audience. Desi Arnaz (Ricky) always maintained he could identify the chuckle of his mother-in-law, who attended every taping. Do you know anyone who has a distinctive laugh?

I think everyone has their own distinctive laugh.  I can't think of anything outstanding at the moment.

 8) The show ended when the Lucille Ball/Desi Arnaz marriage ended. Have you ever had to choose sides when a couple broke up?
Not recently but I imagine it would be quite difficult.

 9) Random question -- You must eat the same dinner, every day, between now and Labor Day. An identical menu, no deviation. What will you be having?
Cracker Barrel's Chicken BLT and Mac-n-Cheese.  Yummmy!


Please leave a comment with a link so I can return the visit!


Thursday, July 12, 2018

Thankful Thursday ~ Vacation ~ 7/12/18

This week I'm thankful for:
~ Freedom!  And I was so happy to celebrate with the rest of the USA over the week of the Fourth of July.  We went to Shawnee State Park to watch the Lights over the Lake and it was beautiful!
~The Hubby has been on vacation since June 30th so we've been spending lots of quality time together.  Monday, Tuesday and Wednesday we rented a cottage at Shawnee State Park and "roughed" it for a few days :)  The cottage had bunk beds and a table.  We had to walk to the bathhouse to use the "facilities".  It was great!
~We spent some time by the lake fishing, swimming and just enjoying the scenery.  Laken likes to catch the fish but like me, doesn't like to touch them.
~Kaylee spent her time relaxing.  She relaxes by drawing and writing stories.  She was never far from her sketchbook and writing tablet.  That's my girl!
~Dex came to the Cottage on Tuesday and spent the day with us.  Laken is such a little mama with both Dex and little Damon.  They certainly love one another!
What are you thankful for today?

First Lines Friday ~ 7/13/18

Today's "First Lines" are from:

From its lofty place above the sparkling crescent Bay of Napoli, Vesuvius loomed over the surrounding towns, pressure building beneath its grassy slopes

Also linking up to:

Wednesday, July 11, 2018

Monday, July 9, 2018

Book Club Tuesday #2 ~ 7/10/18

Welcome back to the 2nd week of Book Club Tuesday!  Thank you so much to everyone who participated!  I hope you had fun :)

Here are just a few of the Book Reviews that were linked up last week:

Labor Not In Vain
Barbara H.
Stone Cottage Adventures

Now for this week's Book Club:

The idea is that we each read books from our shelf, write reviews and then share them here with the Book Club.  So, no need to buy new books that may or may not interest you, just read what you already have and share it here each Tuesday!

 The "rules":

~Must be family friendly.
~Mingle and check out each other's reviews.

That is it!

For now, until I see how much interest there is in having a Book Club Tuesday, please leave a comment including a direct link to your review.  If we have enough interest, I'll look into a "linky" option.

I hope you'll join me and let your friends know about the Book Club!


Sunday, July 8, 2018

What I'm Reading ~ 7/9/18

Today I'm reading:

A Jewish slave girl fights for her life in first-century Pompeii on the eve of the city’s destruction.

Wealthy Roman patrician Cato came to the seaside town of Pompeii to build a new business, but hostility and outright corruption threaten his carefully laid plans and ignite his desire for social justice. Meanwhile, Ariella, an escaped Jewish slave girl, comes to town with a gladiator troupe.
Disguised as a young boy, Ariella’s only ambition is survival.
Ariella and Cato face political intrigue, religious persecution, and family peril even as the ominous mountain in the distance begins to spew its fire. They must bridge their differences to save the lives of those they love before fiery ash buries Pompeii, turning the city into a lost world.

What are you reading?


P.S.  Come back Tuesday and join in my new feature "Book Club Tuesday"!



Song I'm Loving ~ My Lighthouse by Rend Collective

I'm enjoying everything Rend Collective is creating!




Friday, July 6, 2018

Saturday 9 ~ Chains ~ 7/7/18

Chains (1962)
Unfamiliar with this week's tune? Hear it here.

1) The song is about a woman who is in love with her boyfriend, but still attracted to someone else. Do you believe a woman can be in love with more than one person at a time?
Wow!  What a loaded question!  I'm going to say no and leave it at that.

2) What about the male of the species? Do you believe a man can be in love with more than one person at a time? 
See above.

 3) This lyrics were by Gerry Goffin and the music by Carole King. Carole was a favorite guest of David Letterman's. When she appeared on his show, he often commented on how impressed he was by her firm handshake. She credited her memorable grip to time spent milking goats on her Idaho farm. Have you poured goat milk on your cereal? Eaten goat milk yogurt or cheese?
I've never eaten a product from goats.  I have, however, used lotion made from goat's milk and it was wonderful!

 4) When it first came out, "Chains" was a favorite of 18-year-old George Harrison. It was at his recommendation that the Beatles added it to their early stage shows and even recorded it on their first album. When you were in high school, what was one of your favorite songs?

This one really has me digging back in my memory!  I'm going to go with this one:


 5) In 1962, when this song was released, epic movies were popular on the big screen. The Longest Day was three hours long, and Lawrence of Arabia ran more than three hours and a half hours. Today's most popular movies are nowhere near that long. Do you think the average
American has a shorter attention span today than he did in 1962?
Yes.  Not to mention the drinks are probably bigger and we would need too many potty breaks for a 3+ hour movie :)

6) In 1962, First Lady Jacqueline Kennedy went on a two-week goodwill tour of India and Pakistan. She received a ceremonial "welcome necklace" in India. Made without jewels or precious metals -- just beads, sequins and paper -- it was valued by the First Lady for its delicate appearance and craftsmanship, and today it's on display at the John F. Kennedy Library. Tell us about a piece of jewelry that means a great deal to you, and why.

I have the necklace my grandmother gave me to wear when I got married.  She's no longer with us so it means a lot to me.

7) In Pakistan, Mrs. Kennedy made headlines by riding a camel. Have you ever ridden a horse, donkey, camel or elephant?
Only a pony!  lol

8) Also in 1962, the New York Newspaper Guild went on strike, so the nation's largest city went 114 days without a single daily paper. In 2018, how do you get your news?
The internet, of course!

9) Random question -- Complete this sentence: Before I go to sleep, I always ____take my medicine.____.
Please leave a comment with a link so I can return the visit!


First Lines Friday ~ 7/6/18

Today's "First Lines" are from:

August 1912
Lochaber, Highlands, Scotland

She could have been more than she was.  Rowena dug her toes into the cold sand, wrapped her wool-clad arms around her tweed-clad knees, and stared out into the clear, fathomless waters of Loch Morar.  Here, land gave way gently to loch.  Not so a mile northward, where the crags tumbled down into water too deep to plumb.  Deep and cold and wind-wracked.


P.S.  I hope you will come link up your book reviews on the very first ever Book Club Tuesday at Colletta's Kitchen Sink!

Also linking up to:

Wednesday, July 4, 2018

Book Review ~ The Lost Heiress by Roseanna M. White


Brook Eden has never known where she truly belongs. When her friend Justin uncovers the fact that she is possibly a missing heiress from Yorkshire, Brook leaves the sun of the Mediterranean to travel to the moors of the North Sea and the estate of her supposed family.

The mystery of her mother's death haunts her, and though her father is quick to accept her, the rest of the family and the servants of Whitby Park are not. Only when Brook's life is threatened do they draw close—but will their loyalty come too late to save Brook from the same threat that led to tragedy for her mother?

As heir to a dukedom, Justin is no stranger to balancing responsibilities. When the matters of his estate force him far from Brook, the distance between them reveals that their friendship has grown into something much more. But how can their very different loyalties and responsibilities ever come together?

And then for a second time, the heiress of Whitby Park is stolen away because of the very rare treasure in her possession—and those who can save her still aren't sure whom to trust.

My Thoughts:
This was an epic love story that spanned continents, languages and over 400 pages.  I can say that this was easily the longest book I've read in years.  Usually, the books I read are just over 300 pages.  That being said, this book did not seem overlong or boring in the least.
The book was full of mystery, intrigue, romance, and faith.  All the good stuff :)
Brook and Justin's love story was timeless.  They were childhood friends who find themselves feeling differently about each other.  It just takes some time for them to be on the "same page" as far as romantic love goes.  Then life gets in the way and responsibilities of adulthood separate Brook and Justin and left me wondering if they would come back together.
I loved the relationship between Brook and Justin.  They argued.  They fought.  They screamed at each other in French!  And they loved each other with a love that overcame all the diversity in their lives.
I was very curious to find out the details of how Brook ended up in Monaco after her mother's death.  The author ties everything together nicely.
I have the second book of the "Ladies of the Manor" on my shelf and will be reading it next.  I'm looking forward to learning more about Brice, Lord Worthing.


Tuesday, July 3, 2018

Work in Progress ~ 7/4/18


After finishing Ashley's Afghan, I decided to pick up an unfinished project that has been sitting on the back shelf.

This afghan is actually for ME!  I'm using a yarn in my very favorite colors.  It is Red Heart Ombre in Spearmint.

I was going to make a very large afghan that would cover my king size bed but my 11 month old Chocolate Lab has been on a chewing frenzy and it would just break my heart to put all that work into something to have her chew it up!

So, instead of making a 10 X 10 square afghan I decided to make a 5 X 6 afghan/throw.  Here I have approximately 24-25 blocks finished.  So I still need about 5ish more blocks and then to join them and put the border around.

Hopefully, next week I'll be able to show you the finished product!
What are you working on?


Wordless Wednesday ~ 7/4/18

Laken being baptized by her Daddy :) 

Monday, July 2, 2018

Book Club Tuesday #1 ~ 7/3/18

I'd like to start hosting a weekly Book Club here on Colletta's Kitchen Sink.

The idea is that we each read books from our shelf, write reviews and then share them here with the Book Club.

So, no need to buy new books that may or may not interest you, just read what you already have and share it here each Tuesday!


 The "rules":

~Must be family friendly.
~Mingle and check out each other's reviews.

That is it!

For now, until I see how much interest there is in having a Book Club Tuesday, please leave a comment including a direct link to your review.  If we have enough interest, I'll look into a "linky" option.

I'll go first :)  Check out the comments.

I hope you'll join me and let your friends know about the Book Club!


Sunday, July 1, 2018

What I'm Reading ~ 7/2/18

Today I'm reading:

High school art teacher Nicole Anderson is looking forward to a relaxing summer in Savannah, house-sitting and managing an art gallery for a family friend. The house is luxurious in a way that only old money could make it, and the gallery promises interesting days in a gorgeous setting. Yet it isn't long before her ideal summer turns into more than she bargained for: a snooty gallery employee who's determined to force her out, a displaced adolescent roosting in the attic, and two of Nicole's close childhood friends--who also happen to be brothers--vying for her attention.

With a backdrop of a beautiful historical city, incredible architecture, and even an alleged ghost or two, combined with the opportunity for romance . . . anything can happen!
Bestselling and award-winning author Melody Carlson invites readers to spend the summer surrounded by beauty and tantalizing possibilities for the future.

What are you reading?


P.S.  Come back Tuesday and join in my new feature "Book Club Tuesday"!



Song I'm Loving ~ Beautifully Broken by Plumb

I love me some Plumb!

As soon as I heard Plumb's distinctive voice, I knew this was going to be a beautiful song.



Saturday, June 30, 2018

Saturday 9 ~ Back in the USA ~ 6/30/18

Back in the USA (1978)
Unfamiliar with this week's tune? Hear it here.

1) This song lists seven cities -- New York, Los Angeles, Detroit, Chicago, Chattanooga, Baton Rouge and St. Louis -- that Linda just loves. How many have you visited?

I've only been to one on the list and that is New York City.  I've actually been there a few times and even got to ride the carriage in Central Park.

2) The lyrics refer to hamburgers sizzling on the grill. What toppings do you believe make a perfect burger?

Cheese and Ketchup!

3) The original recording of this song by Chuck Berry has always been one of Linda Ronstadt's favorites, one she used to enjoy singing along with in the car. What's the most recent song you sang? 

I always have songs going through my mind.  I guess the last one was Shut Up + Dance as I looked at last week's post :)

 4) Linda sang The National Anthem at Game 3 of the 1977 World Series. The New York Yankees won both that game and the series. How is your baseball team doing this season?
My team is the Pittsburgh Pirates and they are like 8 games behind right now :(

 Since this is our last Saturday 9 before Independence Day, let's ask some questions about the holiday. 
5) During the Revolutionary War, General Washington celebrated the 4th of July by giving his troops a double ration of rum. Will you imbibe any spirits on Independence Day?
I'm not a spirit imbiber...  So, nope.

6) The first man to sign the Declaration of Independence, John Hancock, said he wrote his name so large King George could see it, even without his glasses. Do you require glasses for reading? 

Not for reading, but I do require glasses or contacts for seeing at a distance.

 7) Since July 4 is a federal holiday, banks are closed and there's no mail delivery. Thanks to email and ATMs, Sam finds going without those services isn't a hardship. What about you? Will you find it inconvenient that banks and the USPS are closed on July 4?
No, not really.

8) The first 4th of July parade each year is held at 12:01 AM in Gatlinberg, TN. Will you attend a parade or fireworks to celebrate the 4th?

We'll be attending Fireworks over the Lake at Shawnee State Park this year.

9) More and more Americans celebrate our nation's holiday by eating foods from Italy and Germany. For the July 4, 2016 holiday, more than $50 million was spent on Italian sausage and bratwurst. What's on your 4th of July menu?

We haven't actually made specific plans yet, but usually the normal burgers and hotdogs are on the menu.  Maybe some grilled chicken breast marinated in Italian dressing.  Yumm....
Please leave a comment with a link so I can return the visit!