June 10, 2008

Catching Up

Time to catch up.

First and foremost, thank you all for your good thoughts and prayers for my brother. He's doing very well. For those of you who didn't see my reply to the comments on my post, I'll give you the Cliffs Notes version. The surgeon was able to remove the entire tumor (which was benign). However, it encapsulated the auditory nerve, so Mark lost all hearing in his left ear. He's been home now for almost two weeks and is taking it easy. He's still a bit fatigued and has some balance issues, but he's cracking jokes and sounds very upbeat. It was great to be out with my family in San Diego. I think it's been close to 8-10 years since my last visit. I spent most of my time at the hospital, but I did manage to get a long walk in at the beach in Del Mar. I also managed to eat Mexican food at almost every meal. Love those fish tacos at Rubio's!

By the way, that blog entry about Mark's surgery received the most comments of all my posts. You all are such a caring group of people and I'm honored to know each and every one of you! Thank you.

Bellezza honored me with another award almost two months ago!

Thank you, dear friend, and shame on me for failing to pass on your kind gesture. I was so touched by all the comments posted about my brother (as well as all the virtual hugs on May 28th) that I would like to extend this Blogging Friends Forever award to each and every one of you.

Spring must be my lucky season. Not only did I get the BFF award, but I won this darling apron from Kristen's Dine and Dish blog. I've been reading Kristen's blog for quite some time (I've accumulated a huge stack of recipes to sample) and was so surprised to win the contest. I love the apron and will try to remember to have my hubby snap a picture next time I'm wearing it. Thanks again, Kristen! Your blog rocks!

The stormy weather has been unbelievable this past month. Not only did we have all those tornadoes I mentioned a week or so ago, but we had another big storm come through last Wednesday, just to the north of Lincoln. The sirens went off and we headed to the basement. I think there were four tornadoes that night. And early Sunday morning, one touched down in West Omaha. Crazy weather. I heard that Snoqualmie Pass got 7 inches of snow last night. In June! Go figure, eh?

I've been putting together a list for a new end cap at work and was so pleased with the numbers for my current display. Here's a picture of what's currently up:

Click on the picture to enlarge.

Here's a list of the books:

Daisy Fay and the Miracle Man by Fannie Flagg

Durable Goods by Elizabeth Berg

Joy School by Elizabeth Berg

The Center of Everything by Laura Moriarty

Wish You Well by David Baldacci

Boy's Life by Robert McCammon

A Northern Light by Jennifer Donnelly

Tallgrass by Sandra Dallas

I Capture the Castle by Dodie Smith

The Secret Life of Bees by Sue Monk Kidd

Yellow Raft on Blue Water by Michael Dorris

Ellen Foster by Kaye Gibbons

Cold Sassy Tree by Olive Ann Burns

Some Things That Stay by Sarah Willis

A Tree Grows in Brooklyn by Betty Smith

I've read Durable Goods, Joy School, Yellow Raft on Blue Water, The Secret Life of Bees and Some Things That Stay twice. It's been quite a while since I read Boy's Life, so maybe I'll add that to my towering stack of summer reading.

The best-selling of all of these books has been Fannie Flagg's Daisy Fay and the Miracle Man. I think a lot of readers missed it when it was first published in 1992. It's such a fun read! Definitely another to re-read later this summer.

Stay cool and safe!


  1. I'm so glad to hear your brother is doing well and is in good spirits.

    Rubio's! It is one of my favorite places to eat.

  2. First of all, I am so glad to hear that about your brother. I will keep him in my prayers.

    Second - I am thrilled that you won the apron! You have been such a great supporter and I truly appreciate it.

    Lastly - I'll take one of each of those books, please :) Seriously - my TBR list just got longer, thanks to you. I've read Some Things That Stay, Ellen Foster, Secret Life of Bees... and loved all of them. These other selections look right up my alley!

  3. I'm glad to hear that your brother is doing well.

    I love your end-cap. I've read quite a few of those books - my favorites are A TREE GROWS IN BROOKLYN and THE SECRET LIFE OF BEES. I just finished TALLGRASS a short time ago and really liked that one too.

  4. So glad to hear your brother is doing well!

    That's a great endcap, with four of my favorite books of all-time...not a bad percentage! I missed reading that Fannie Flagg title, too, so I hope I'll remember to look for it on my next trip to Half Price. :)

    How cool that you won that apron (and pointed me to a terrific blog). And HEY! I just saw that floral fabric when I was browsing an online fabric store earlier this evening.

  5. A co-worker just gave Tom Boy's Life to read. I loved I Capture The Castle.

  6. Wonderful, wonderful news about Mark! So thankful. Please keep us posted.


  7. That's good to hear that your brother is recovering well.
    And that's a very cute apron. :)
    As for the books, I've only read I Capture the Castle and The Secret Life of Bees, but I have A Northern Light and A Tree Grows in Brooklyn in the TBR stacks. It must be fun putting together these displays.
    Have a nice weekend. Hope the weather stays calm for you.

  8. Terri B. - Thanks. So, you love Rubio's, too, eh? Are you in Southern California?

    Kristen - Thanks. I know Mark and his family appreciate the continued thoughts and prayers.

    I'm thrilled I won the apron, too! Must blog about it on my cooking blog, though! And get a picture of me wearing it, perhaps cooking something off your blog. Tonight's Tequilia Shrimp might be just the ticket.

    Help yourself to the books! :) If I had to recommend just one or two, I'd say Boy's Life and Daisy Fay and the Miracle Man.

    Janet - Thanks. I'll be checking in with him again this weekend and will tell him that everyone's still thinking of him.

    So, you gonna tell me which four books?! Definitely give Daisy Fay a read. It's a perfect summer read.

    Isn't Dine and Dish a great blog? Glad you're enjoying it. Kristen's a fabulous writer. Weird coincidence that you saw that floral fabric. Do you sew? I'll bet an apron is pretty easy (says she who can only sew buttons on pants!).

    Nan - Oooh! I can't wait to hear what Tom thinks of Boy's Life. Rod enjoyed it, too.

    Colleen - Yes, it is, isn't it? Thank you for your kind words.

  9. Lynne - Thanks! And I'm glad you enjoyed taking a peek at my end cap. As I mentioned above, I think Daisy Fay (and/or Boy's Life) would make a great summer read. Especially if you're in the mood to laugh.

    Nat - Isn't it a cute apron? I love it! I failed to mention that folks can find these aprons here.

    Yep, it's a lot of fun putting the displays together. It's even more fun to come in to work on Monday morning and see what's sold over the weekend.

    We should have a nice calm weekend. No storms in the forecast - at least at this point! It was so nice to have a quiet night last night.

  10. I'm so glad to hear that your brother's doing well. As to fish tacos...I think I'll stick to beef or pork, myself. :)

    It must be fun to put together the end caps; it must be fun to work at a bookstore period! I'd love it.

    I noticed all the comments you were getting caring about you and your brother. You're certainly right that all of your friends need the card award.

  11. So happy to hear your brother is recovering nicely! Yay!!
    Daisy Fay is such a sweet book. I am glad to see people are discovering it again :)

  12. I'm so glad your brother is doing well! Three cheers.

    That end cap is GORGEOUS!!! I was having trouble getting into any particular book on my recent conference trip once I finished Garden Spells, so I struck out on foot to Target one night and picked up that very edition of A Tree Grows in Brooklyn. I think I'm one of five people left in the world that hasn't read it.

  13. Bellezza - Oh, they taste much better than they sound. A nice piece of halibut or cod (grilled) in a corn tortilla with some cabbage and Mexican crema (like sour cream) and a bit of salsa. Yummmmmmmm.

    It is fun to put the end caps together. I'm constantly thinking of what the next theme should be. I'm getting ready to set a "Summer Reading" display and after that one I think I'll go with novels centered around women's friendships. And, yes, it's great fun to work in a bookstore. I love going to work!

    Yep, the kindness of friends in good times and bad is remarkable. I'm constantly touched by the thoughtfulness of folks in the blogging community.

    Iliana - I agree. I think it's great that people are discovering Daisy Fay after all these years. It's on my list for a re-read.

    Andi - Thanks. I'm glad he's doing well, too.

    I have a lot of fun with my end caps. I thinks it's very nice of my store manager to let me have my very own. :) Enjoy A Tree Grows in Brooklyn!

  14. I'm glad to hear your brother's tumor was benign.

    Those end caps must be a lot of fun to do.

  15. So glad to know your brother is doing well. Thanks for updating us.

  16. I didn't know you worked at a bookstore!!!! Talk about a kid in a candy shop!!!! How fun! and your end cap is just divine!!! So many of my most fave reads!

  17. Katya - Thanks. It was a great relief to all of us.

    Yep, the end caps are great fun to put together. It's interesting to see what sells and what doesn't.

    Tara - Thank you. I appreciate everyone's concern.

    Laura - I've been at B&N for about 14 months now. Love, love, love it!!

    I'll get a picture of my new end cap posted later this week.

  18. Great endcap! I love the design element to it all and there are a number of books there that peak my interest!

  19. Carl - Thanks! I really enjoy picking out the books to use on my endcaps and this one was a lot of fun. I'm curious which books piqued your interest. Have you read Boy's Life? It's fabulous. Definitely one I want to read again.

    I plan to have my new endcap picture posted later this week. I'm gonna guess that there aren't a lot on it that you'll be interested in, though. :)


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