Thursday, October 29, 2009


The following is a list of books I have read since September 1, 2009, to complete the Goodreads Seasonal Reading Challenge for Fall 2009. The challenge runs from Sept 1 through November 30, 2009. Two people were finished with all the tasks by the end of September! Some people didn't even decide to join until last month.

1. Daughters of the Grail by Elizabeth Chadwick
2. After the Apple by Naomi Harris Rosenblatt
3. Jack Nastyface: the Adventures of an English Seaman by William Robinson
4. Krapp's Last Cassette by Anne Argula
5. The Crucible by Arthur Miller
6. Web of Evil by J.A. Jance
7. My Journey with Farrah by Alana Stewart
8. The White Gryphon by Mercedes Lackey and Larry Dixon
9. Unstrung Heroes by Franz Lidz
10. This Time Together by Susan L. Liepitz

1. Run Silent, Run Deep by Edward L. Beach
2. The Seven-percent Solution by Nicholas Meyer
3. Stories Children Need by Carolyn Sherwin Bailey
4. When the Ground Turns in Its Sleep by Sylvia Sellers-Garcia
5. A Visible Darkness by Michael Gregorio
6. Sacred Ground by Mercedes Lackey
7. Aphrodite's Flame by Julie Kenner
8. Joining by Johanna Lindsey
9. Jayhawkers by Bryce D. Benedict
10. Catfantastic 1 edited by Andre Norton and Martin H. Greenberg

1. The Girl Who Stopped Swimming by Joshilyn Jackson AND
- Swim to Me by Betsy Carter
2. Thirteenth Child by Patricia C. Wrede
3. Addition - 11 The Alchemist by Paulo Coelho AND
- Division - 31 1st - The Black Gryphon,
4. Valor's Trial by Tanya Huff
5. Chronicle of a Death Foretold by Gabriel García Márquez AND
- Aunt Julia and the Scriptwriter by Mario Vargas Llosa
6. Girl with a Pearl Earring by Tracy Chevalier
7. Risk by Dick Francis
8. Japan: The Ramen King and I by Andy Raskin AND
- Canada: Burying Ariel by Gail Bowen
9. Dance with Chance: Making Luck Work for You
------ by Spyros Makridakis, Robin Hogarth & Anil Gaba
10. To Sir, with Love by E.R. Braithwaite AND
- Pay It Forward by Catherine Ryan Hyde

1. Zora & Nicky by Claudia Mair Burney
2. Exile's Valor by Mercedes Lackey,
- Fanuilh by Daniel Hood AND
- Grayheart by Tara K. Harper
3. Julie & Julia by Julie Powell

1. Ogden Nash's Zoo AND
- You and No Other by Cathy Maxwell
2. Restoree by mother, Anne McCaffrey AND
- Dragonsblood by son, Todd McCaffrey
3. The Funny Thing Is... by Ellen DeGeneres
4. Marie Antoinette: The Journey by Antonia Fraser
5. The Celestine Prophecy by James Redfield
6. The Shadow of Blooming Grove : Warren G. Harding in His Times by Francis Russell
7. 1: Compromised by Kate Noble,
- 2: Look Again by Lisa Scottoline AND
- 3: Fool for Love by Eloisa James
8. person: Saving Faith by David Balducci,
- place: The Witches of Karres by James H. Schmitz AND
- thing: Face Down under the Wych Elm by Kathy Lynn Emerson
9. A Walk to Remember by Nicholas Sparks AND
- Just Do Something by Kevin DeYoung
10. The Werewolf Principle by Clifford D. Simak

1. Holes by Louis Sachar AND
- The Private World of Georgette Heyer by Jane Aiken Hodge

1. The Seeing Stone by Kevin Crossley-Holland,
- Angry Housewives Eating Bon Bons by Lorna Landvik AND
- Baby Teeth by Blythe Holbrooke

Totals: 45 tasks, 62 books, 690 points
Reward: an expanded mind, a disheveled house and the right to choose a task for the Winter Challenge.

The word for the day for October 29, 2009 is "challenge" - Function: noun
Date: 14th century
1 a : a summons that is often threatening, provocative, stimulating, or inciting; specifically : a summons to a duel to answer an affront. b : an invitation to compete in a sport2 a : a calling to account or into question : protest b : an exception taken to a juror before the juror is sworn c : a sentry's command to halt and prove identity d : a questioning of the right or validity of a vote or voter. 3 : a stimulating task or problem. 4 : the act or process of provoking or testing physiological activity by exposure to a specific substance; especially : a test of immunity by exposure to an antigen.

Our quote for the day is from William Shakespeare (1564–1616), Romeo and Juliet Act II. Scene IV:

Ben. Tybalt, the kinsman of old Capulet,
Hath sent a letter to his father’s house.

Mer. A challenge, on my life.
Ben. Romeo will answer it.
Mer. Any man that can write may answer a letter.
Ben. Nay, he will answer the letter’s master, how he dares, being dared.

Monday, October 12, 2009


Monday, October 5, 2009


A wealthy couple greet Faire attendeesGreetings and Salutations

DJ and VickieDJ and Vicki in the entry court

DJ rejects a hat DJ rejecting a hat that might have fit Hoss Cartwright

Jan with man in armor (Vicki on far right) As the men in kilts were too fast, I managed to catch one in plate armor.

Vicki checking out the kilted fellow. Vicki checked out one of fellows in a kilt from afar.

dog in kilt They also had a dog in a kilt.


It was "Men in Kilts" weekend at the Bonner Springs, KS, Renaissance Faire. The day was cloudy, breezy and cool, so DJ lent Vicki and me each a cape. As we were all in vaguely 16th century garb, the capes worked very well. It was a really good day to go to the Faire.

The food was excellent. Vicki had the veggie wrap for lunch to allow her to have the strawberries and whipped cream. As the fruit was served on top of funnel cake, I became the enabler; I ate most of the funnel cake so she didn't have to overeat. For some reason, I kept calling it "flannel cake," so my sister decided it was red plaid.


The word of the day for October 5, 2009 is "scrumptious".
Pronunciation: \'skrəm(p)-shəs\
Function: adjective
Etymology: perhaps alteration of sumptuous
Date: 1830
delightful, excellent; especially : delicious

Our quote for the day is from Sinclair Lewis (1885–1951). Babbitt. 1922:
Babbit: “Honest I did. Well, well, come on—now we’re friends—what’s the darling little name?”
Ida: “Ida Putiak. It ain’t so much-a-much of a name. I
always say to Ma, I say, ‘Ma, why didn’t you name me Doloress or something with some class to it?’”
Babbit: “Well, now, I think it’s a scrumptious name. Ida!”


Thursday, October 1, 2009


Speedy's new dog door Handyman Matters sent out James to install a permanent Hale door for Speedy. This one has two flaps and weather stripping for insulation. The transparent, black security panel is Lexan (TM) and has a bolt latch which also holds the panel up without removing it from the tracks. Plus the door itself won't interfere with the patio door in any way. The timing was approximately a week for delivery of parts and two and a half hours installation. I had intended to put in a mechanized door, but finally decided that Speedy can go in and out under his own power. We're green at our house.
Speedy went outside just after full dark last night. I was in the bedroom when I heard his door flap magnets clack. He started barking in an unfamiliar pattern. When I got to the the patio door, I could barely see him circling something on the patio, nose to the object. Once I flipped on the lights, I could see that a toad had hopped up onto the concrete.

I went out and got the poop-scoop to encourage the toad to leave the fenced portion of the patio. Unfortunately, I didn't grab Speedy first. The instant the toad moved, Speedy was on it. "No! Drop it! Leave it!" Speedy complied, somewhat reluctantly. The toad appeared unharmed; it hopped off through the fence and off toward the unlit part of the patio.

As dogs have no lips, you can't say that they exactly spit. However, Speedy was making the attempt to spit out that nasty toad-taste. He wouldn't take a drink, so I held him over the sink and managed to rinse his muzzle, although I don't think I got any water on his tongue. So he sneezed and spat for the next half-hour. This morning he is fine. He may have learned a lesson, but I don't intend to bet the farm on this. The weimaraner that lived across the back fence used to spend much of the summer and fall catching toads and "spitting".


The word of the day for October 1, 2009 is "toad" Pronunciation: \tōd\
Function: noun
Etymology: Middle English tode, from Old English tāde, tādige
Date: before 12th century
1 : any of numerous anuran amphibians (especially family Bufonidae) that are distinguished from the related frogs by being more terrestrial in habit though returning to water to lay their eggs, by having a build that is squatter and shorter with weaker and shorter hind limbs, and by having skin that is rough, dry, and warty rather than smooth and moist. 2 : a contemptible person or thing.


Our quote for the day is from William Shakespeare (1564–1616). The Tragedy of Macbeth, Act IV, Scene I:

Round about the cauldron go;
In the poison’d entrails throw.
Toad, that under cold stone
Days and nights has thirty-one
Swelt’red venom sleeping got,
Boil thou first i’ the charmed pot.