HELLO JUNE! Spillin’ Tea!

Here it is June already. It hasn’t been the greatest few weeks, has it? Children are being murdered in their classrooms, here in a hospital, and craziness is rampant.

I rarely turn on the news anymore. It’s soon primary time so all of the politicians in Oklahoma are bragging about being endorsed by the other guy who lost. It’s depressing. Guns before kids. Until one of theirs is killed nothing will get done. It’s easier for an 18-year-old to buy a long gun than it is for a rape victim to get an abortion. I guarantee if all the women in the country took up assault rifles over this issue the NRA would shut down assault rifles real quick!

Anyhoo, we have been fighting allergies and asthma, with both of us having to go to the hospital. OU Boy had another MI and had to have all of his 5 stints scrubbed out as they were 100% blocked. Then he had an ear infection and the doctor perforated his ear drum trying to get the wax out. The pup has allergies as well so we all look like we are crying all the time. I think we are all past the worst of it now.

Luckily I didn’t miss going on the river in the kayak because it has rained or been windy AF all week. Perfect weather for curling up with a book. And I have read a lot. Right now I’m reading Ann Cleeves Rising Tide, a Vera Stanhope mystery. I love the show, Vera. We are also watching The Sopranos from the beginning because OU Boy has NEVER seen the Sopranos! We finally got to see Stranger Things 4 and I quit halfway through. These aren’t kids anymore. It was a bit over the top. I enjoyed the Johnny Depp trial more. At least it was funny.

This morning the sun is shining and the birds are pooping all over the sidewalk. There is a red cardinal on my birdfeeder and I’m feeling hopeful I can get outside today. And in a stunning turn of events, I only have 10 books on my NetGalley list! I’ve managed to catch up on other reads and even edit a cookbook.

I was planning on going to the beach this month, but my sister went to Sanibel Island and came back with Covid, so maybe not. Coco is almost 2 pounds now and we call her The Flash. She could be a racing dog she’s so fast.

What is everyone planning for the summer? Going any place? Reading anything I should know about?

xx P

What A Wild Weekend!

Happy Whatever you are celebrating! In Oklahoma, the weather can change on a dime! While it is always windy, it’s a matter of 15mph or 45 mph. To our surprise, Friday dawned bright and hot! The High was 85 degrees so we were at the lake by noon and had our tent set up and the kayaks in the water. With the winds it was choppy! CoCo got “seasick” according to OU Boy who had her in a very safe doggy backpack, in his kayak, so they turned back. Eventually, we were able to go without her and it was amazing being back on the water, jumping white caps, and seeing who could go the furthest. It was me. It’s always me.

As you can see, I caved on the camping. I found this tent on Amazon and it was just what I didn’t know I wanted. Our big cabin tent was airy and it was not fun when the wind blew. Plus we gave it away. This little baby is aerodynamic and nothing moved! So cozy inside. We set it up on a tarp and then set up our screen house over it! Put down another tarp and a quilt so the princess could run around safely. Everyone did great until we woke up to 40 degrees and high winds. It took us 15 minutes to pack up and get our buns back to the house and the heat.

Saturday we checked each other for ticks. Apparently, that’s a thing. Luckily we did not have any unwanted guests. Then we laid around moaning about how sore our arms were.

Sunday we headed to the farm. It was a bittersweet day. Our first Easter without Grandpa and his birthday is today. We had a low-key celebration. Grandma cooked a delicious ham and I brought potato salad and cupcakes. I spent time on the back porch just rocking dogs and remembering why I loved that man so much.

Finally, everyone left and the pups crawled into their beds and slept. We were all worn out. And the weather was good so everyone sat outside. Most of us. Not me.

So the latest on Miss CoCo. She is at 1.1 pounds and is healthy. She has also found her voice and is annoying as a two-year-old. The first time I heard her I thought someone was strangling a cat and came running, but no, she wanted to let me know she pooped. She does this at 2 a.m.which OU Boy handles by bringing her back to bed with him. But here she is in all her stubborn glory. What was her first word? Here you go!

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Marching into March with a New Baby!

I know today is Mardi Gras. A holy day for us here usually. But it just didn’t seem like party time today. With our friends in Ukraine being unjustly invaded and killed it is just not celebration time.

Here it’s summer today. Flip flops and shorts. Last week we had snow and ice that is still hanging around in the western portion of the state as well as out at the farm.

A few weeks ago we started looking at small breed dogs for Grandma. Being out in the middle of nowhere on a dark farm, especially in bad weather, can be depressing. She found one on her own and darn if I didn’t take the runt. So yes, we have a fur baby. Or OU Boy does. It was his birthday gift. So meet CoCo.

She comes from a great home and her mom is a mini chihuahua and her dad is a toy Yorkie. She has 4 brothers who are four times her size. Grandma named her’s JJ and he weighs 1.9 pounds and totally eclipses her. He is wild and runs all over the place and barks. Coco doesn’t like touching carpet and she came wrapped in a cashmere blanket. So she is high maintenance.

She isn’t a pound yet so we are feeding her what the vet recommended. She was born and stayed with her parents and siblings in a large room. We bought an enclosure for a guinea pig for her and it fits her potty tray, which she already knew how to use, and her tiny bed and all of her toys. She doesn’t like wide-open places like the floor. At this moment OU Boy has taken her to work with him in her backpack. It has been too cold for the guys to see her until now. We are a pile of mush with her. And I have to say, the anxiety fairy has not shown up since CoCo came! Who knew?

She is a picky eater and we still bottle feed her milk. The vet recommended Goat’s Milk as it has a higher fat content. She gets a drop of honey three times a day so her blood sugar stays stable and he feeds her a teaspoon of Blue Buffalo filet mignon and veg. Literally, he feeds her with a spoon.

But with all of the mess going on in the world right now, calm of any kind is welcome. Sitting on the sofa snuggling little bit is the most calming thing in the world. We are obnoxious parents and she has more junk than any dog needs but she is just so darn cute.

I am praying for peace and aid to Ukraine and I hope you all are as well. It’s time to take a stand.

Stay safe and warm.

xx P

Spreading the Love, not the Virus!

This has been some crazy weather! Last weekend we had snow. About 6 inches. People lost their minds and forgot how to drive and wrecks were all over the metro. It was gone in a few days. Nice and sunny today though. Hoping to get out in the kayak tomorrow.

So Valentine’s Day is upon us once again. Monday for those of you who need a reminder. Whole Foods has roses for $19.99 for two dozen. There you go.

All the Republicans came and made fools of themselves at the Gov.Stitt fundraiser. Don’t they realize there are cameras everywhere? And as the cherry on top, our Chef tested positive for Covid on Sunday. Surprise!

As for me, I have been battling a Crohn’s flair-up. Not pretty. I ate a boiled egg today. First time in 5 days I have eaten. So far, so good. Drinking copious amounts of Turmeric tea because it soothes my tummy. Catching up on reading lists and staring at the wall. But let’s talk tea!

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Harney & Sons have a tea just for Valentine’s Day. It’s black tea with chocolate and rosebuds. When you open the tin the smell of chocolate hits you in the nose! The tin states “A romantic brew of our chocolate black tea blended with lovely pink rosebuds”. It’s good. Grab a chocolate croissant and you are in love.

Tea is always a good gift. Maybe with some Godiva chocolates? If someone I know is reading this?

We voted for Mayor on Tuesday. I voted for the current one. He’s pretty transparent and involved in the community. And he’s a Republican. I vote for the person, not the party.

During the ‘snowstorm’, there were 14 Amazon trucks waiting to get into the warehouse facility and they were waiting for 3 days! With my stuff on board. Very stressful. I had to see my therapist. Not because of that but it did add to the stress. I’m just feeling claustrophobic. It feels as if our world has shrunk since the Covid mess. I order my groceries now and just about everything else. Is this our new normal?

NetGalley has saved me from boredom and being a Vine Voice has kept me busy. I have painted all the furniture I scavenged and decorated my house twice. It’s keeping me semi-sane.

What do you have planned for Valentine’s Day? It’s on a Monday so probably nothing here. I have enough birthdays on that day and OU Boy’s birthday is the 21st.

Enjoy your weekend, stay safe, stay warm!

xx P

Goodbye January! Books, Cows, Chickens, and Pickles, Oh My!

Well, it’s hard to believe tomorrow is February. This has been such a chaotic winter so far and I don’t see Miss February being much different. It seems we always have an ice event sometime this month. Normally I am out of town in the warmth by now. But again, Covid. The unwanted houseguest just keeps popping back in. All of my neighbors are down with it. They are also unvaxxed.

Closing out January today as I have so many books coming out tomorrow. So here is what I read for February.

A beautiful story of family and secrets.

This contains: Circus of Wonders Elizabeth Macneal PDF, Circus of Wonders Elizabeth Macneal Epub, Circus of Wonders Elizabeth Macneal Audiobook, Circus of Wonders Elizabeth Macneal Read Online, Circus of Wonders Elizabeth Macneal VK, Circus of Wonders Elizabeth Macneal Epub VK, Circus of Wonders Elizabeth Macneal Kindle, Circus of Wonders Elizabeth Macneal PDF Free Download ➡ Hardcover, 368 pages
Expected publication: February 1st 2022 by Atria/Emily Bestler Books
ISBN 1982106794
File Size 36.8Mb
Historical Fiction with an unlikely heroine.
The Violin Conspiracy | Brendan Slocumb | 9780593315415 | NetGalley

A tale of race, poverty, hope, and family

This contains: The Christie Affair PDF, The Christie Affair Epub, The Christie Affair Audiobook, The Christie Affair Read Online, The Christie Affair VK, The Christie Affair Epub VK, The Christie Affair Kindle, The Christie Affair PDF Free Download ➡ Hardcover, 320 pages
Expected publication: February 1st 2022 by St. Martin's Press
ISBN 1250274613 (ISBN13: 9781250274618)
Language English
File Size 32Mb

A fictional account of Christie told by her husband’s mistress

The Black Agenda | Anna Gifty Opoku-Agyeman | 9781250276872 | NetGalley

Non-Fiction and Highly recommended

Two women. A history of witchcraft. And a deep-rooted female power that sings across the centuries. Once there was a young woman from a well-to-do New England family who never quite fit with the drawing rooms and parlors of her kin. Called instead to the tangled woods and wild cliffs surrounding her familys estate, Margaret Harlowe grew both stranger and more beautiful as she cultivated her uncanny power. Soon, whispers of witch dogged her footsteps, and Margarets power began to wind itself with

Can’t go wrong with Hester Fox. A really good one!

Love & Saffron: A Novel of Friendship, Food, and Love: Fay, Kim: 9780593419335: Amazon.com: Books

I absolutely loved this story of friendship, food, and love

"A great new voice in suspense...Perfect for fans of Big Little Lies who thrive on stories of deceit in the suburban world.  J. T. Ellison, New York Times and USA Today bestselling author of Her Dark Lies "Pitch perfect suspense...The best debut Ive read this year.--Allison Brennan, New York Times bestselling author An intriguing and twisty domestic suspense about loyalty and deceit in a tight-knit Texas community where parents are known to behave badly and people are not always who they appear

Not as good as I had hoped

City of the Dead (Alex Delaware, #37)

It’s Kellerman. It’s good!

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Loved it!

by JJ Bola, PRINT ISBN: 9781982175566 E-TEXT ISBN: 9781982175580

Not my cup of tea

Batten Down the Belfry (House-Flipper Mystery #4)

Another winner in this series

Batter Off Dead (A Country Store Mystery #10)
Another cozy series I love

These are my February release reads. Most are long read before we get to this point. I’m on to August at the moment and was pleasantly surprised to receive ARCs from James Patterson, Harlan Coben, and Stuart Woods. James Patterson wrote with Dolly Parton and that was surprising.

We had that cold snap with horrible winds a couple of weeks ago but this week was sunny so all the cows decided to go ahead and pop those babies out. One after the other. All weekend. I felt so bad, I wanted to give them all an epidural. That big heifer on the left is trying like heck to deliver what looks like triplets! We did see a set of twins. So, yeah, farm life. No better place to be.

We also checked out the new Chicken and Pickle place. No, I thought we were going to be having chicken and pickles. Nope. Not a pickle on the plate. The place is huge! So many cars I almost didn’t go in. But there was plenty of space inside and out. We snagged a small sofa in its own niche and watched Kansas City lose. Still not happy with that one.

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So they have Pickle Ball courts. Inside and outside. Plenty of stuff for parents with kids in The Yard. Corn Hole, and other games I am not familiar with. The food was good but that bowl is about the size of a salad plate and there were exactly four pieces of pulled pork. If you don’t have kids, you may want to go somewhere else for brunch because it is loud!

I received my government Covid tests in the mail. Now I have 6 of them. We have the Republicans coming to the hotel this week so I’m sure we will need to test after that. $5,0000 a plate. They are eating short ribs and baked potatoes so I think someone is making a profit. Much different than our favorite Cattlemen’s Association. Those cowboys ate T-Bones and eggs! For breakfast! That is a man there.

We are learning to live without Grandpa at the farm. He had that John Wayne presence. Grandma is still feeling a bit lost and unsteady. She allows herself to be emotional but she also has a steel spine and this will be a long journey for her. Luckily she has us to hold her hand through it.

We are supposed to get lots of snow and bad weather this week. They say this every week and still nothing. We are desperate for rain or moisture.

Thanks for stopping by and let me know what you are reading! Stay warm and happy reading!

xxP

Saying Goodbyes

The last day of a bad year. I hope you all had a good Christmas! It’s been a bit wild here.

Friday, Christmas Eve, we packed up the truck with food, gifts, and clothes. I had been staying at the farm and came to town for supplies. Christmas Eve was quiet and beautiful. The weather was warm and there was no wind. I sat outside late at night and listened to the coyotes sing. Along with the donkey. By that time Grandpa was not good. Hospice came late that night and things went quickly after that.

Christmas morning we thought he had rallied a bit while opening his gifts. But if you have been through this you know that is not what it means. He left this earth at 1 p.m. Monday. With his wife and family by him. This family was born and died on the land they claimed in Indian Territory. It was sad and we were really tired and cried out. After everyone left, Grandma and I talked and cried some more. Arrangements were made on Tuesday and we held the wake on Wednesday and the funeral yesterday. It was a beautiful service and I made it through my reading with just a few pauses and deep breaths.

All of the grandsons were pallbearers and each wore one of his favorite caps. After all had gone, we came home and slept 10 hours.

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We sent the funeral home over 200 pictures and they created a video that made us sob and laugh. His boots were there along with a bottle of wine from his own vineyard and his wedding ring. We went with his wishes for music. The Old Rugged Cross, Rainbow by Kacey Musgraves, The Tennessee Waltz and to finish off…Prop me up beside the jukebox if I die by Joe Diffie. His love of dancing was legendary.

I hope we honored him in a way he would love. Then we all went to Cemetary which is a block from the farm on an old dirt road. The kids ran the four-wheelers and the rest of us popped some more wine and toasted him one last time. His was a life well-lived. I will miss him terribly but I’m sure he and his Australian Shepherd are headed to the fishing pond!

Happy New Year and thanks for listening!

xxP

Time For Some Tea!

Here it is December 13 and not a hint of winter. Do I care why? Nope. I wore flip-flops to the nail salon. Happy as can be. I hope your weather is behaving itself and staying in it’s own yard.

I am not exaggerating when I say this has been a rough couple of months. Let’s start with the entire OU nation losing it’s mind over Lincoln Riley hopping a jet to USC. I had told OU Boy this was going to happen weeks ago. Did. Not. Listen. Awe! Shock! And to lose to OSU and not get in any playoffs. Players were jumping through that transfer portal like it was the door to Narnia! We started playing fire the coach. It was amusing until Bama gave us UGA folks our first loss. Oh well. Such is football. But it’s not over yet boys!

Next up was OU boy sneezing and hurting his back. Sciatica. Oh, the moaning and crying and the doctor just told him Welcome to your 40’s! Then Thanksgiving where I was so hoping not to be alone as that is the day one year ago we found my mother on the floor of her apartment. She lived until December 5th. It was a tough time for my sisters and I . But no, one family wasn’t vaccinated so we did not go. I was furious. The man that wasn’t is now in ICU on a ventilator after basically killing his 95-year-old grandmother. She died in the room next to his, while his daughter was in Labor and Delivery giving birth to a cutie little girl. Grandpa got sick and was in hospital as well but his was a heart issue and he is now home and they are ready to draw that line in the dirt. No vax. No come in. Then yesterday another uncle died. So it’s been insane.

So, we’ve been on the road for weeks at hospitals, the farm and back to town. We had our boosters last Wednesday and I ran a fever of 103 for two days and felt like crap. But then I slept 10 hours and felt fine. I also got put in Twitter jail for three days for saying something true to our governor.

If it wasn’t for copious amounts of tea, I would probably be in jail right now. But the end is in sight and I’m keeping my eye on that. I am done with all of my 2021 reading and reviews and most of 2022.

Good Stuff? Well we tried out a cute little cafe’ Saturday in Bethany. The Stray Dog. It had actual metal dog bowl with paws on them full of popcorn. But oh lord, those hotdogs! Deep-fried hotdog wrapped in bacon! Such simple goodness. I will definitely be back. Especially since it’s on the way to the kayak dock. They had a lovely antique mall that smelled like peppermint and a hug.

I hope y’all have had an easier time than we have. And have more responsible relatives. Stay safe and warm, my friends.

xx P

It’s Only November and I’m Over It!

Seriously y’all, Saturday I had to wear pants! And a sweater! I’m still shook.

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I had to show off my new boots though so pants it was. And socks. My feet were silently crying. Poor babies. Since my Georgia Bulldogs were playing at the same time as OU Boy’s school, we went to brunch and happily dug into the Whiskey Cake Cafe’s Farmhouse Eggs Benedict. Everything here is locally sourced and it was delicious.

We were home in time for the games. Tommy had to watch his on his phone because apparently, I am ‘too loud and vulgar”. Who knew all these years I am screaming, ” Just kill him!” was so awful. I’m sure the neighbors were wondering.

Both of our teams won. Mine clinched the SEC East. All in all, it was a good day and then we watched the GBBO. Oh Amanda, what a bad bake day you had.

For weeks now we have been working insane hours plus caring about our Grandparents and a 17-year-old. We were pretty worn out by Sunday. We watched more football, a really insane show on Netflix about Eureka Springs, Arkansas. Coincidentally, the place our aunts and uncles spent Halloween being drunk in another state.

At half-time, we shot over to the mall for the Wallflower sale at Bath and Body and we were back before kick-off.

Of course, the most important thing that happened on Saturday was the release of the sequel to A Dress the Color of the Sky. A Dress the Color of the Moon. This has been like birthing a baby for my friend Jennifer. The reason I like working with her is she is so open to change but fights like heck for her characters. And she was right!

Today is sunny but cold. That should not be allowed. Oklahoma is still being ignorant trying to not have masks in school and not get nurses and police vaxxed. Seriously, do you want to be sick and have a nurse who is taking care of Covid patients also taking care of your heart condition? That is called an unacceptable risk. Same for cops and medics and firemen. Have you never had to be vaccinated for life? School? If you joined the military they just line you up and shoot crap in your arm. You don’t ask what is in this, Karen!

Let’s all hope November treats us better than oh say, the last two years?!

Stay warm

xx P

Still no Autumn…but wait, is that thunder?

We have had no rain in a long time. We have had lots of sunny and hot days.

Since OU Boy is now the head chief in charge, his hours are 8 to 4. And week-ends off. This is very different for us and we are learning to adjust. The good part is we still have time to get in a couple of hours at the lake.

Saturday we went to Lake Overholser. Specifically to the Stinchcomb Wildlife Refuge. We had about 50 kayaks and 15 paddle boarders and it was about 90 degrees. We explored every nook and cranny and found some deer and dozens of turtles who quickly plop into the water if you speak.

The rock formations are so pretty. We did about four hours of that and then went to Pride Fest where I got a lap dance from a guy who had better eye makeup than me. OU Boy just kept his head down eating his chili fries. But it was a blast. Lots of singing and dancing and good food.

OU Boy had his yearly heart check up as last year this time he had 5 stints put in. For the first time his cholesterol was high. 160. He was in shock. He has never had an issue with cholesterol before. He had also gained some weight which the doc said was muscle mass from all the kayaking we do. But now he has to change his diet. And lord you would think his dog died. He wasn’t happy that I tossed the chicken fry steak and went with a lentil stew. He did not eat it. He had an Eggo. Last night I made pinto beans and brown rice. 0 cholesterol. He loved that. But this is going to be a long battle I think.

People here are still fighting over their right to not get the shot. One of my neighbors said it made you sterile. I’m good with that. Stupid people should not procreate. Our grandfather had a stroke and had to wait over eight hours for a bed anywhere in the state. 80 percent of patients are unvaxxed people. Now, I’m sympathetic to sick folks ( NO, she is not) but my grandfather isn’t dying because you were stupid. Finally we found one fairly close to home and after a week he is back home and getting stronger. One of my neighbors came over to tell me her friend had died after only a few days of being in hospital with Covid. I asked if she had been vaccinated and the neighbor said, NO. Whereupon my smart mouth said,” Oh well, that’s one less idiot in the world”. And honestly that is how I feel. If you aren’t willing to protect your children and family that’s on you.

So this was a long rant and now I hear thunder so either it is finally going to rain or the big guy upstairs wants me to hush.

I hope you are all well and keeping yourselves safe. What is everyone reading? Has anyone seen Midnight Mass on Netflix?

xx P

It is officially Autumn…somewhere

Hell yeah we are ready for a little cool down. With Autumn officially here it is still 90 degrees.

I have seen so much pumpkin spice crap I want to throw up. Popcorn, Oreos (seriously leave Oreos alone). Personally I’d like to see more cider donuts. Buckle up y’all, things are about to get weirder.

I haven’t been able to type for a bit. I had second degree burns and blisters on my left hand. I would love to say it was a welding accident or I rescued a puppy from a fire, but no if you are a crafter you already know. The dreaded hot glue gun. And while I’m running to the faucet screaming I ran into the wall. A picture fell down and broke two of my toes. I knew they were broken because one looked like the letter C and they turned black. Days later OU Boy rolled his ankle. So we’re just gonna sit on the sofa and not move for a bit.

Obviously we are trying to do too much. OU Boy got a huge promotion which also means different schedules and fixing up his office. I stopped by and he has two loungers, a 70 inch flat screen on the wall, an air fryer, and a fridge. That is the outer office. His new schedule is 8 to 4 and Monday through Friday. I don’t remember when we didn’t work Saturdays. So we are adjusting to each other’s schedules and I am trying hard to be a wife. So far it’s just having dinner ready. I’ve made it twice this week.

I realized that I have no idea what a wife does. Iron? I work full time myself. We sat down and talked about my lack of wifery skills. He is fine with just carrying on as we are with me being understanding of his odd hours at first. And sex. The good thing is he is a garbage eater. Meat, potatoes,pasta, casseroles and the good old sandwich with Kraft cheese. I can make dinner of two olives and a triscuit. I’m great at taking things out for dinner but by the time it rolls around I just don’t care.

It’s still hot here so we have been kayaking and visiting the Grands. Grandpa is in hospital now. If you are on the fence about this Covid thing, well, get off. My Grandpa had pleurisy and a mini-stroke. There were no hospital beds at all. Nowhere. We were told a bed may open up at Yukon Community and it did after 8 hours. We are sending folks to other states now and still these idiots refuse to get a shot. If you have to be hospitalized you wait for someone else to die. That’s brutal.

I am grateful for a never ending stack of books and a tea supply that will never run out. So, how are things in your neck of the woods?

I’m gonna go take something out for dinner. “And she laughed and laughed”.

P