Thursday, August 30, 2012

Thankful Thursday


1. I am thankful our family is not in path of Isaac.
2. I am thankful to feel better today than yesterday.
3. I am thankful my friend's husband is out of the hospital.
4. I am thankful for the new, cute photo of my granddaughter.



"Once outside, Samad and Archie got into the jeep containing Dr. Sick, who was asleep on the dashboard, started the engine, and drove into the blackness."

Wondrous Words
"adjective 1. foolish or inane, especially in an unconscious, complacent manner; silly."

"Archie sat at the back of the second jeep, quiet, sober, frightened, and in awe of his friend. Archie had never had a hero: he was five when his father went out for a proverbial pack of  fags and neglected to return, and, never being much of a reader, the many awful books written to provide young men with fatuous heroes had never crossed his path--no swashbucklers, no one-eyed pirates, no fearless rapscallions for Archie."

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Teaser Tuesday

A handful of older women milled around the front porch. One woman was punching the doorbell with open-up-or else ferocity. Another had her hands pressed to the sides of her face as she peered in a window./shouldbereadingteaser-tuesdays-aug-28/

Monday, August 20, 2012

Teaser Tuesday

"The hit on Molly Mathews went on for pages, not surprising with all her philanthropic works and her family's long roots in Ashton Corners. Lizzie lingered over an article mentioning Molly and her own grandmama, Beatta Turner, when they had found a soup kitchen at the Methodist church in the mid-1960's."

Tuesday, August 14, 2012


Two childhood friends go on a journey together from Spain to the surrounding communities of the Pyrenees mountains. On their journey Pilar and her friend discuss the meaning of love, forgiveness and how to lead an adventurous life by taking risks to fulfill a dream. There is also the Pere who seems to become a mediator or advocate, a friend, between the man and woman. First of all, I thoroughly enjoyed the book, BY THE RIVER PIEDRA I SAT DOWN AND WEPT by PAULHO COELHO. I've had good conversation whether confrontational or peaceable while reading through the pages. Whatever the tone of the moment ideas flowed like good wine pass the three people to me. The transition to another world of spirituality and beauty made me see that moments in my life can be full of meaning.

I began the novel thinking one way, then, all of a sudden there was a switch in my mind. At first the male companion seemed to be the one capable and willing to teach Pilar the way to a spiritual life. I thought Pilar seemed more romantic. You know woman want romance. Man wants to pontificate about his great deeds. It is only after her male companion comes back from a time of solitude in the mountains do I see he is the one who will be changed by the woman's thoughts about forgiveness and what dream to follow in life. Oddly, when he comes from the mountaintop and meets the woman he grabs her and gives her a deep and intimate kiss. The kiss seems to say 'I want your body.' He is now willing to give up his life of spiritual growth in order to build a home with a white picket fence and do all that he thinks this woman, most women want for their lives. Here is the twisted dance. Pilar doesn't want any of the above. She wants to talk about spirituality.She wants to give her life away in service to other people. This is the walk, the journey she wants to share with her companion. I suppose both are striving to sacrifice themselves for one another in different ways.

In order that Pilar's  strong spirituality is not overlooked. Paulo Coelho mentions Saint Teresa of Avila along with Bernadette of Lourdes and Of course, the Virgin Mother who understands our suffering because she experiences the death of Her Son. Broadening his points the author includes Psalm 137. I still have parts of the Psalm rushing through my head like fresh water. I will feel neglectful not to add the Psalm to the end of my book review. Most of the journey is through the French countryside. I feel the flavor of their journey will seem more lasting and real if I leave the Psalm here in the French language. Of course I can only read it in the English.

Psalm 137

English Standard Version (ESV)

How Shall We Sing the Lord's Song?

137 By the waters of Babylon,
    there we sat down and wept,
    when we remembered Zion.
On the willows[a] there
    we hung up our lyres.
For there our captors
    required of us songs,
and our tormentors, mirth, saying,
    “Sing us one of the songs of Zion!”
How shall we sing the Lord's song
    in a foreign land?
If I forget you, O Jerusalem,
     let my right hand forget its skill!
Let my tongue stick to the roof of my mouth,
    if I do not remember you,
if I do not set Jerusalem
    above my highest joy!
Remember, O Lord, against the Edomites
     the day of Jerusalem,
how they said, “Lay it bare, lay it bare,
    down to its foundations!”
O daughter of Babylon, doomed to be destroyed,
    blessed shall he be who repays you
    with what you have done to us!
Blessed shall he be who takes your little ones
    and dashes them against the rock!biblegateway

Monday, August 13, 2012


"A person who goes in search of God is wasting his time. He can walk a thousand roads and join many religions and sects-- but he'll never find God that way. God is here, right now, at our side. We can see Him in this mist, in the ground we're walking on, even in my shoes. His angels keep watch while we sleep and help us in our work. In order to find God, you have only to look around."



"I asked each sister to bring the single amber bead I had given.....Amber is fossilized tree resin that sometimes hardens around pieces of seeds, soil, and insects. Each bead carries a piece of Africa in it. What could be more fitting I had reasoned, than holding a piece of Africa in the palm of your hand?"


Sunday, August 12, 2012


This memoir is very emotional because it's about children in a family. Terry is the oldest sister. There are many siblings. This family had so many heartbreaking problems It's hard to know where to start the review. I think it is possible to read about a dysfunctional family without placing blame on one adult's head. There are no perfect families. There are no perfect individuals. These two thoughts allow me to think with empathy and compassion for the whole family. However, these feelings do not an excuse the behavior of the adults especially physical abuse. According to TERRY HELWIG, her father was the strongest and most dependable of the two. Still, in my head I felt he was somewhat weak. What did he not give Terry's mom? What caused her to run from him over and over again? She would always run to the arms of another man. Why??? Does all the blame land on her hideous illness?

Well, I can with happiness applaud the children. Growing up under such stress I wondered how they could make it from day to day. For example, they moved from Colorado to Texas over and over again. Then, they were moved to California. The girls never knew when they would be pulled out of school by the school teacher and principal because their parents had decided to move somewhere else. I can only imagine what it must feel like trying to make new friends so often and trying to pick up your studies without falling behind. One time Terry told a best friend I am "from everywhere and nowhere."

The children also had to live with their mother's impulsive behavior. She divorced their father. Then, remarried, broke up, remarried. So many marriages so many times I couldn't keep count. Their mother also left the children to the care of  Terry. It seemed like she couldn't wait for Terry to grow big enough to carry the babies, feed the babies, iron the clothes, fix the meals, etc."In addition to the driving and grocery shopping, Mama put me in charge of signing our report cards and writing notes for excused absences."

While reading the book I realized that children are so vulnerable. Whatever their parents do or how their parents act is what they have to live with for many years. The children grow up in a world of confusion. Children are silent. They have no voice. They can only obey the orders of the big people. This is a fascinating memoir. There are pages and pages of pain. There are also pages of family love between the sisters. TERRY HELWIG'S MOONLIGHT ON LINOLEUM is a fascinating memoir. I think the author sums up the inability to see clearly in such a family by writing the following words.terryhelwig
"The moon had climbed into the sky and was now shining inside the trailer window. I looked to where it spilled across the waxed linoleum floor....I stared at it for a long while. How was it possible that moonlight on linoleum, washed with my tears, could be so achingly beautiful?"

Friday, August 10, 2012

Quote It Sat

"All this was so new to me. Life takes us by surprise and orders us to move toward the unknown--even when we don't want to and when we think we don't need to"fredasvoice

Wednesday, August 8, 2012

Wondrous Words

"Intrinsic basic and essential: belonging to something as one of the basic and essential features that make it what it is

"Both Mama and Daddy had an intrinsic curiosity about life, which led Mama to ask Daddy if he would drive us through one of the nearby pueblos."

2.Lethe in Hades  In Greek mythology, Lethe (Λήθη, Lēthē; Classical Greek [lɛː́tʰɛː], modern Greek: [ˈliθi]) was one of the five rivers of Hades. Also known as the Ameles potamos (river of unmindfulness), the Lethe flowed around the cave of Hypnos and through the Underworld, where all those who drank from it experienced complete forgetfulness. Lethe was also the name of the Greek spirit of forgetfulness and oblivion, with whom the river was often identified.Wikipedia

"Liquor had been Eunice's river of forgetfulness, her Lethe in Hades. Drinking helped her forget, but the cost was her competence, her daughter, and her health. I worried that mom waded in those waters, too."
3.Fret A fret is a raised portion on the neck of a stringed instrument, that extends generally across the full width of the neck. On most modern western instruments, frets are metal strips inserted into the fingerboard. On historical instruments and some non-European instruments, pieces of string tied around the neck serve as frets.Wikipedia

"Dusty played in a band called Dusty Dinton and the Troubadours. His band sang country-and-western songs...More than once, he brought his guitar to the house, placed the guitar strap over my shoulders, and showed me how to arrange my fingers on the frets  and strings to play various chords."bermudaonion

Tuesday, August 7, 2012

moonlight on Linoleum by TERRY HELWIG

"If I had to pick a single painting to represent my childhood connection to the big-sky country of Texas, New Mexico, and Colorado, I would choose Georgia O'Keeffe's Ladder to the Moon. It evokes what I felt when I gazed into the distant horizon or tilted my head to marvel at the starry heavens. Driving through big-sky country back then, I noticed how infinitesimal a particular problem like moving seemed when set against the backdrop of creation."

Moonlight On The Linoleum by TERRY HELWIG


Moonlight On The Linoleum by TERRY HELWIG

"I could not find my mother's grave. The caretaker thumped a large brown ledger onto his desk, "What's your mom's name?"bibliophilebythesea

Monday, August 6, 2012

Teaser Tuesday

"I could never give myself over completely o family life with Dad and Cathy. I feared that I, like Vicki, was forgetting Mama much against my will. Mama had begun to feel more like a ghost to me than a real person. And I had noticed, to my dismay, that Mama's Polaroid picture on the dresser had begun to fade."


"It was raining in Bilbao. Lovers need to know how to lose themselves and then how to find themselves again. He was able to do both well.

the secret lives of baba segi's wives by LOLA SHONEYIN

I can not  imagine being one of four wives. I also can not imagine living in a household with three of the women who are mothers while I am barren. Altogether there are seven children in Baba Segi's household. LOLA SHONEYIN does not strive to sugarcoat the situation of this African lifestyle. The situation can become ugly with nasty name calling, revenge, jealousy. It becomes very important to establish the fact that you are the head of the pack or the most important wife. This is why Bolanle became my favorite of the wives. She is the last wife. She is new to anything that happens in the household. Many times she has to trust her gut instinct that the other wives are not leading her down a wrong path. This time are they telling her the truth or another lie. As the story moves forward, the behavior of the wives becomes more and more unreliable and hateful. Bolanle relies on personal strength and a woman's intuition to get her through each day. Finally, she will find a friend in whom she least expects to find one. However, the friendship will lead to more trouble for Bolanle.

Of course, I didn't like Baba Segi. He seems to portray a stereotype of the black male. In other words, the conquering of women means he is strong and manly, a powerful man whose word should never be questioned. Also, the othe stereotype is that the Black male thinks about sex all the time and never gets enough. For example, Baba Segi gives a night or nights to each woman for love making. His intimacy is less than kindly. Selfish is the word I would use. However, further in the story I became sympathetic toward Baba Segi. This part in "the secret lives of baba segi's wives" is proof that African men have feelings too and can think with their heads and not just the lower half of their bodies. In one chapter his body language shows his change in character."Baba Segi nodded in concurrence but he was silent. Arms that were earlier folded over his bosom dropped to his sides." This novel added to my knowledge of the African culture. I had the chance to explore the African male mind as well as the mind of the African woman. I also love the way LOLA SHONEYIN uses the title as the shocker of the whole book. I never would have guessed the secret.

Sunday, August 5, 2012



the secret lives of baba segi's wives LOLA SHONEYIN A Novel

"Teacher raised his hands in triumph. "Listen to me. When the missionaries left me behind, the thing that made me bitterest was that I had taken them to be my fathers. They plucked me from my father's home when I was a young boy and made me feel like I was their own. But when the time came for them to return to their country, they abandoned me here, like a cockerel casts the shells of groundnuts aside."

Friday, August 3, 2012

Quote It Sat

"We have to listen to the child we once were, the child who still exists inside us. That child understands magic moments. We can stifle its cries, but we cannot silence its voice."fredasvoice

Mailbox Monday

Friday 56

"The next morning, BOLANLE came out of her bedroom. The kitchen fell silent as soon as she cast a shadow on the door frame. She said good morning and winced as she curtsied."(the secret lives of baba segi's wives by LOLA SHONEYIN  book photo abovefredasvoicethe-friday-56


"When BABA SEGI awoke with a bellyache for the sixth day in a row, he knew it was time to do something drastic about his fourth wife's childlessness."rosecityreader

Wednesday, August 1, 2012

Wondrous Words

 [ i níkwitəss ]   
  1. utterly harmful and wrong: immoral, especially in a way that results in great injustice or unfairness
"I rushed home as soon as I could, wondering what to do with the bowls. Apart from the fact that their splendor now seemed iniquitous, they were evidence, stolen goods, and I knew I had to dispose of them."