Tomes and Tea: A Sunday Tumblr Tradition

Sunday Tomes and Tea - Welcome to Night Vale

Sunday Tomes and Tea is a tag created by @bibliophilicwitch on Tumblr back in 2013. I’ve been participating since mid-2016, I joined the book-nerd, tea-lover party with this pic of Welcome to Night Vale that spring.

Sunday Tomes and Tea - Everything's Eventual

Sunday Tomes and Tea - Magic Burns

When I have delicious baked goods around, I make sure to include those too. (Both of these are from 2017.)

Sunday Tomes and Tea - The Dark Tower

When I’m lucky enough to be reading something with cool illustrations, I snap those instead of the book cover, because so few books have them! (2017, The Dark Tower.)

Sunday Tomes and Tea - The Death of Vishnu

Sunday Tomes and Tea - The Subtle Knife

Despite the name, it doesn’t have to be tea. My oatmeal looked especially pretty one Sunday morning, and a different weekend, I was chugging a smoothie for my poor sore throat. (Both 2018.)

Sunday Tomes and Tea - The Bookseller of Kabul

Sunday Tomes and Tea - The Awakening

Because my mug collection is vast, I try to coordinate whenever I can. (Both 2018.)

Sunday Tomes and Tea - A Darker Shade of Magic

Sunday Tomes and Tea - Misery

Sunday Tomes and Tea - Pigs in Heaven

But when I get a new favorite mug for Christmas, it starts showing up more weeks than not. (All 2019.)


Sunday Tea and Tomes - Children of Earth and Sky.jpg

And when my poor used book is missing its pretty dust cover, like this past week, it’s time to get creative and mess with what has obviously been my standard setup for all these years!

End of the Month Wrap-Up: September 2017!

PJG Bridge

[@ the Portland Japanese Garden]

In September I hit the reset button on my stress levels with a kick-ass vacation to Oregon that involved a week of books, beaches, gardens, and the zoo. (Oregon Zoo is my favorite zoo ever, now that I’ve been there. If you’re anywhere nearby, go as soon as possible, and if you’re planning any trip to the Pacific Northwest, make it a priority. It’s fantastic.)

Complete Haul

My complete book haul from three shops: Powell’s Books in Portland, The Book Bin in Salem, and Bob’s Beach Books in Lincoln City. Each of these books was either used or a “new” remainder (and thus deeply discounted–the Le Guin box set was only $25!)

On the home front, I read ten books, didn’t set foot in the library once (I miss it!) and spent my writing time testing out different methods of outlining in preparation for choosing a new project for NaNoWriMo. So far, I’ve got one plot bunny laid out in a summary/zero draft form–it’s longer than a standard summary but it doesn’t have a scene breakdown like I would want to have for a full zero draft. (And it’s stuffed with worldbuilding notes.)

Over the vacation I tried to spend half an hour each morning putting pen to paper in an attempt at mind-mapping, with decent results. I’m finding it a great method for developing a new idea–brainstorming, essentially–but I don’t think my scribbled maps are going to cut it when it’s time to write; I see myself organizing these ideas into something more linear as an intermediate step. I suppose if I pick this bunny for NaNo, we’ll see what that step entails.

Coming up in October, I hope to expand at least one more plot bunny, though I haven’t chosen which one or what method; to participate in Inktober; to finish the PopSugar 2017 Reading Challenge, of which I only have a few tasks left to tackle; and to finally choose a project to take on for NaNo.

Also to put up all my blog posts on time. I’ve been lax about that, even aside from the vacation this month.

Did you have a productive September, readers? Do you have any interesting plans for October? Talk to me in the comments!

Out and About: Northfield, MN

Sidewalk Poetry 1

I’d never been to Minnesota until recently, when my husband and I got on a plane to go to a wedding. I had no idea what to expect, but it wasn’t poetry stamped onto the sidewalks!

I didn’t have time to find all of them scattered across the downtown area, but I got to quite a few.

All the rooms at our inn had names, which of course charmed me straight out of the gate…

Reading Nook

Then I found a reading nook down the hall from our room. Win!

And when I had a little time, I went shopping. Content Books and The Sketchy Artist were both down the street, so I came home with a cookbook and some mini journals in my luggage that didn’t start the trip with me. Support independent bookstores! (And art stores!)

I had a great time, ate great food, and got to spend time with family. No writing time, but that’s why I’m glad to be home, too.

Is This How I Shelfie?

January Shelfie.JPG

…by ordering two new bookshelves for myself for Christmas to replace the single, falling-apart one that used to be on that wall, then spending an entire day putting them together and reorganizing my books, happy as a clam?

“Take a shelfie” is a task for the ReadsTheBooks 2016 Reading Challenge.  Done and done.

My book tower is finally off my nightstand and spread across the top two shelves! (Guarded faithfully by my stuffed okapi, among other critters.)

Shinn Shelf Closeup

And my Sharon Shinn collection takes up almost an entire shelf on its own.  If any author will ever achieve full-shelf status in my household, she’ll be the first.

I did use this opportunity to weed out some books I didn’t want anymore, adding to the pile I hadn’t yet donated from the pre-Christmas book purge of the living room shelves.  I took the whole lot to the library to donate yesterday.  I heaved the box onto the reception desk and one of the librarians came out of an office to greet me.  Once I established that these were donations, she immediately started picking through, and she gave me the widest smile.  “You gave us knitting books! And cookbooks! Oh, we’re going to have fun with this box.”  I couldn’t help smiling back, she was so excited.

On the way out, I checked the sale shelves in the vestibule, and found a copy of The Girl on the Train, which I hadn’t planned to read, but it was such a big book last year…I couldn’t pass it up for 50 cents. (It’s missing its dust jacket, but for that price, who cares?)  So then, since I had a dollar bill on me but no change for the cash box on the wall, I had to pick out another book, right?  So I scored Contact, too.

I’d say I shouldn’t be buying more books when I already have so many on the TBR shelves…but I donated a box!  That entitles me to a few more, right?

The Twelve Days of Christmas Blogging, Day 7


Photo Day!


My favorite ornament on the tree, yes, that’s a curled-up armadillo.  Armadillos are adorable!


This year’s gift wrap selection.  I’m about half done wrapping presents.


My writing/crafting table.  I’m not done sewing presents yet!  (Featuring my current journal on top of a box of chalk pastels I used to use for art but now mostly use for marking fabric, on top of my old jewelry box that is now my sewing “basket”, next to a bag of rice, yes, a bag of rice because I am making rice heating pads, and then one of four stacks of books from my huge library bag-sale haul I haven’t even gotten a chance to blog about because of all the Christmas blogging.  I came home with over 30 books, and the ones on the table are just the female authors for #readwomen this month.  The other three stacks are behind, mostly hidden.  But I didn’t have any room on my shelves.  I need new bookshelves.  I need more bookshelves!)


And finally, me, because I was digging the stripey-sweater/stripey-scarf combo.