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      The Autumn Supporter Giveaway!       Welcome to the very first of the seasonal BCF supporter giveaways! This month also marks one year since I took on the forum, so I want to say an extra huge thank you to all of you for keeping this place going. I have a little bit more to say about that later but, for now, let's get to the giveaway!     The Autumn Giveaway winner will be getting two Penguin Little Black Classics, The Tell-Tale Heart by Edgar Allan Poe and To Be Read At Dusk by Charles Dickens. Both of these little books contain three atmospheric short stories, perfect for autumnal evenings. The winner will also get Mary Shelley tea (a lavender and vanilla black tea) from Rosie Lea Tea's Literary Tea Collection (https://www.rosieleatea.co.uk/collections/literary-tea-collection) and a chocolate skull, to really get that spooky atmosphere .   and...   A special treat for a special month. The winner will choose one of the following recent paperback releases from the independent bookshop Big Green Bookshop:       The Wych Elm by Tana French A House of Ghosts by W.C. Ryan Melmoth by Sarah Perry The Familiars by Stacey Halls  The Dark Descent of Elizabeth Frankenstein by Kiersten White   The winner will be chosen via the usual random selection process in one week. Patreon supporters are entered automatically. If you aren't a patreon supporter but you'd like to join in with this giveaway, you can support here: https://www.patreon.com/bookclubforum.   I really hope you're all going to like this introduction to the seasonal giveaways. It's been a lot of fun to put together. Other chocolate skulls may have been harmed during the selection process…     
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Athena

What's Up in May? - 2018

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It's May already! The year is going by fast sometimes.

 

This weekend I'll be seeing my siblings and their partners as they are coming over for a visit. We're planning to have a nice dinner with them and with my parents (so it's my parents and their children + partners). I'm looking forward to it. After that I'll probably need a few days of rest to recover from the tiredness.

 

What's going on with you in May?

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9 hours ago, Madeleine said:

It's Star Wars Day!  May the 4th be with you.

 

Ah yes, the one day a year we get to celebrate 5 good films and 4 poor ones! 

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May is not starting out to be a good month for me. Having cataract surgery next week, not a big deal but more serious things were detected in the very thorough tests that were run.

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13 hours ago, muggle not said:

May is not starting out to be a good month for me. Having cataract surgery next week, not a big deal but more serious things were detected in the very thorough tests that were run.

 

I'm so sorry :(. That all sounds very scary. I hope they will take good care of you at the hospital. I'll be thinking of you.

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14 hours ago, muggle not said:

May is not starting out to be a good month for me. Having cataract surgery next week, not a big deal but more serious things were detected in the very thorough tests that were run.

 

Eek. :( I hope everything goes well. Will send you good thoughts next week. :)

Edited by Little Pixie

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On 5/4/2018 at 10:04 PM, muggle not said:

May is not starting out to be a good month for me. Having cataract surgery next week, not a big deal but more serious things were detected in the very thorough tests that were run.

Praying for a clean bill of health.

 

It's already been a hectic month. Dd and hubby moved yet again. They are still 15 minutes. The house is SO much better than the rental they took position of when we moved them back from El Paso, TX. While we appreciate the landlord renting to them (not the best credit, etc) but all he did was collect the rent. The plumbing is messed up. The house has 6 bathrooms and they ALL have leaks and running water. The owner kept the water bill in their name and are now upset that they have a water bill of $3700. DD and SIL told them when they first moved in about the water issue. He only sent a plumber friend around after he got the bill. The thing is, he can refuse to pay the bill and let it get turned off and in order for dd and family to have water, they'd have to put the water bill in their name and pay that past due bill when it was the landlords responsibility. THEN there was the insurance fraud. Dd was preparing for Thanksgiving and something caught fire on the stove. There was smoke and water damage. The owners filed an insurance claim. They told dd that they owed $6k in deductibles yet the insurance company told them it was only $1k. The owners brought in a cleaning service who didn't clean the place. So they've lived in a house that still had extensive smoke damage and poor wiring. NOW on top of that, there is the problem with the air conditioning. We're in a southern state. Landlords are required to provide some basics, like the air conditioning. The house could get up to 90' degrees. Six little ones and a daughter with medical issues, not a good mix. He kept saying he'd come and fix it and never did. So, he's now out of two tenants. Our dd and family and the college students that rented the unit in front of their house. They got a beautiful home and have already moved in. It's smaller but safe, clean and everything is working. Lots of light and grass for the babies to play in. 

 

Now its Monday and I plan to do very little. As we had the kids since last Thursday we are exhausted. My mom came down to visit for her birthday and she took the two oldest grand daughters back with her for a few weeks. The house is now empty. I'm so glad! I'll walk Kizzy, sit at the lake dock and read and run one errand for ds. That's IT!

 

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I got back from Montenegro earlier today - and it was fabulous. I had one run in with a bus driver who put me on the wrong bus and then threatened to throw me off when I complained in the middle of nowhere, but that got sorted out. Apart from that the Montenegrins are wonderful, very friendly and helpful people. It was obvious though that they are not geared for mass tourism and are struggling in places to cope with the influx. I hope they manage to sort things out, as it is such a beautiful place to visit.

 

I had a lovely studio apartment near the old town of Kotor which I found on booking.com - I love that site! The hosts were fabulous and picked me up from the airport when I arrived, refusing to take any money for it. They weren't able to take me back to the airport as they both have full time jobs but did take me to the taxi rank to make sure I didn't get ripped off. The whole area around Kotor Bay where I stayed is just gorgeous though - it looks like a Norwegian fjord or something similar surrounded by these wonderful mountains with all little villages and churches built into the hillsides. The old town is a bit like Dubrovnik in neighbouring Croatia but much smaller and with city walls that go jp into the mountains with fantastic views - it is a bit of a climb (1300 steps) but worth it. I explored all around the Bay and found it was very easy to do this on local busses - there was one day as well when I did a longer organised bus tour to see some of the interior. The food was very good - mostly seafood and Italian and excellent value and the beer is really good as well! It was hot when I got there - 30 degrees but cooled down a bit towards the middle of the week when we had a lot of rain, but I just ignored it and went out anyway - I was in shorts and sandals every day and when it's that warm it doesn't matter if it does rain as everything dries quickly anyway. If anyone wants to go somewhere a bit different though that isn't as yet all that developed and loves culture and scenery then I would highly recommend Kotor - it ticked all the boxes for me and was brilliant. Back to work tomorrow though!   

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18 hours ago, Virginia said:

Now its Monday and I plan to do very little. As we had the kids since last Thursday we are exhausted. My mom came down to visit for her birthday and she took the two oldest grand daughters back with her for a few weeks. The house is now empty. I'm so glad! I'll walk Kizzy, sit at the lake dock and read and run one errand for ds. That's IT!

 

I hope you can rest a bit :).

 

12 hours ago, Talisman said:

I got back from Montenegro earlier today - and it was fabulous. [....]

 

I'm glad you had a good time on your holiday :)!!

 

I had a great time with my family, it was really fun to see my siblings again. We saw my dad's parents but not my mum's parents. We had some great food too.

I'm feeling exhausted now though, so I'm planning to rest a bit in the next few days.

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Wow, it seems like a long time since

I last visited! :o 

 

I handed over as chair of the local community/charity group that I'm involved in at the end of April, so I was majorly busy with planning my AGM and all the jobs left over at the end of that. Also, I can't rest on my laurels as this year I am Treasurer so I still have loads to catch up with. :wacko:

 

I don't have much more news than that, that I can remember. It's all been a bit of a blur. :lol:

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Hey y'all!

I'm trying to be more active in the group. The thing is I have my phone by my side all the time and my tablet is in another room. Swiping and correcting on the phone gets old QUICK! 

 

I spent the day enjoyably. I dropped dh off at work then went downtown to the open market, sat and drank coffee while reading a magazine and people watching. Then I walked the length of the market and bought some fruits and veggies. I deposited those to my truck then went to the library to pick up some books on cd. I then went to dd's house and took her to Aldi's and picked up a few things, dropped her off and picked the boys up and made ANOTHER library run for tons of movies. Their cable, internet wont be turned on til Monday so they needed something to watch as its too hot to be outside much. After dropping them off, I swung by Trader Joe's for some wine and a few more veggies not offered at the open market, went home, put those away, closed all the windows and turned on the air conditioning and closed the blinds. Then ran to Walmart for carrots and my addiction, Lindy's Lemon Icees. By then it was time to pick up hubby, so I do that, came home showered, put on my house dress and am making myself comfortable in our bedroom watching the new season of Midsomer Murders. 

 

All in all a lovely day. But its too damned hot. We've reached triple digits already and we're not in the middle of May yet!

 

Have a great day, afternoon or evening!

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Yikes - that's a bit hot for me. Montenegro was 30 degrees when I got there, and it was 25 degrees when I got home but the temperature has now dropped to 15 degrees - a lot cooler. It was back to work on Tuesday for me (Monday was a Bank Holiday here) and straight back into the fray. Our new CEO is pushing ahead with the green initiative that I and one of my cleaners suggested, and as part of this we have just agreed to start a 2 week trial of new toilet roll and hand towel dispensers to cut down on waste - I have to start counting the amount we use as of tomorrow for 2 weeks before the trial starts so that we can gauge the results. I have also just ordered a load of new recycling bins - far too much that can be recycled is ending up in the wrong bins so hopefully this will help. It's all exciting stuff - if I can't sleep tonight I will no doubt be lying awake counting toilet rolls! :)

 

Coran and I were going to go up to London yesterday for the TUC March (a new deal for working people), having just returned from holiday though I had loads to catch up on home and loads of stuff I was running out of, so it was a trip to Lush instead to stock up on various goodies, among other things. I did though manage to buy a whistle for the next march I am going on in June to mark the anniversary of Brexit. :yeahthat: Coran has a piano lesson later on so I might go out for a coffee, otherwise I will just sit out on the doorstep and read. This afternoon we are going to see The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society as we haven't seen it yet, and it won't be around for much longer. I read the book a few years ago and loved it.  

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It's National Vegetarian Week this week!  I know we have quite a few vegetarians here at the forum, which is lovely.  :flowers2:

 

After two years as an ovo-veggie, last month I finally took the plunge and went vegan.  I'm not missing eggs at all, which baffles me.

 

I hope everyone is off to a good start with their week.  I'm trying to get a few quotes together so I can have some much needed work done on my central heating.  This process is taking forever and is a nightmare!

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Hey y'all!

 

Hope everyone had a lovely weekend and for us Americans a lovely Mother's Day! Yesterday was supposed to have been my "at home day" but hubby wanted to stroll the outdoor market (we call them swapmeets and is just a place to buy and sell any and everything). After that we picked up a few things from Trader Joe's and it was about that time when dd called and needed to go to the emergency room. She's been dealing with throat pain and the meds given her weren't working so I picked her and four of the grands (the two oldest girls are in Virginia with my mom) and dropped her off and brought the boys back with me. Luckily they found the problem, gave her meds and she was home by 1700.  I dropped her and the kids off and came back home and watched some Midsomer Murders. This morning we did some yard work and I put in a few plants. The house is cool and clean, the yard is looking great and once I take Kizzy for a walk and then do an additional 2 miles for myself, I'll be sitting on my dock with a book. Dinner will be easy, quick and light.  Tomorrow I have to take the beastie to the vet for her check up and shots.  Today plans to be another sauna day but the rest of the week is supposed to be rainy and I'm glad for it as its really really dry. When the weather is funky, I stay put!

 

Have a great day!

Edited by Virginia

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On 14/05/2018 at 1:49 PM, Onion Budgie said:

It's National Vegetarian Week this week!  I know we have quite a few vegetarians here at the forum, which is lovely.  :flowers2:

 

After two years as an ovo-veggie, last month I finally took the plunge and went vegan.  I'm not missing eggs at all, which baffles me.

 

I hope everyone is off to a good start with their week.  I'm trying to get a few quotes together so I can have some much needed work done on my central heating.  This process is taking forever and is a nightmare!

 

:)  I've been vegan for 25 years and vegetarian for 15 before that. These days I wonder what I ever did with an egg!

Edited by RebeccaM

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1 hour ago, RebeccaM said:

 

:)  I've been vegan for 25 years and vegetarian for 15 before that. These days I wonder what I ever did with an egg!

 

That's awesome!

 

I just threw away my poach pods.  There's no going back now.  :lol:

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Hello, HELLOOOOOO? Anybody home?????!!!!

 

Hey y'all!

It's been quiet as a graveyard up in here. Where IS everyone?! Is everyone recouping from the weekend thingy that happened? I'm not sure, I think there was some kind of wedding or something? Something to do with a prince and an American divorcee? I don't know, thought I heard something. I could be wrong.

 

Not much going on today. Hubby was called in to work this morning. It's his day off but he was supposed to come in for a shop meeting but then they called and asked if he could work. As the meeting has to do with a new General Manager starting today and being introduced to the crew, it was a good move. Anyway, since he's working I'm at loose ends. I  may haunt Barnes and Noble. Don't know. Not sure if he's working a full shift or not. I have the truck so I will have to pick him up. I will be going to Virginia tomorrow to pick up my grand divas. The two oldest have been there with my mom since 4 May and its time to pick them up now that the house is in place and their beds are set up. I had planned to get them this weekend but I really have no desire to travel during a national holiday weekend (Memorial Day). So, I'll do it tomorrow and be back tomorrow night. 

 

What's up with y'all?

 

 

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The weather's been nice in the UK for once so we've probably been outside!  I was in and out of the  garden, bought some plants and potted them up, did some shopping, watched some of that wedding (see the TV thread).

 

Next weekend is a holiday weekend here too, hooray.

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2 hours ago, Virginia said:

Hello, HELLOOOOOO? Anybody home?????!!!!

 

Hey y'all!

It's been quiet as a graveyard up in here. Where IS everyone?! Is everyone recouping from the weekend thingy that happened? I'm not sure, I think there was some kind of wedding or something? Something to do with a prince and an American divorcee? I don't know, thought I heard something. I could be wrong.

 

Not much going on today. Hubby was called in to work this morning. It's his day off but he was supposed to come in for a shop meeting but then they called and asked if he could work. As the meeting has to do with a new General Manager starting today and being introduced to the crew, it was a good move. Anyway, since he's working I'm at loose ends. I  may haunt Barnes and Noble. Don't know. Not sure if he's working a full shift or not. I have the truck so I will have to pick him up. I will be going to Virginia tomorrow to pick up my grand divas. The two oldest have been there with my mom since 4 May and its time to pick them up now that the house is in place and their beds are set up. I had planned to get them this weekend but I really have no desire to travel during a national holiday weekend (Memorial Day). So, I'll do it tomorrow and be back tomorrow night. 

 

What's up with y'all?

 

 

 

No, you weren't wrong there was indeed a wedding. :roll: I watched most of it on TV as I suspect a lot of other people did. Bride and groom both looked very happy, as they usually do on such occasions! It made me remember my own wedding day almost 4 years ago. 

 

I had a quiet Saturday on my own also as Coran had to take her friend to Tunbridge Wells to get fitted for some new crutches to help her get around more easily. Most of it was spent watching the aforementioned wedding and reading a rather good book. After Coran got home we cut the grass which was beginning to resemble a jungle.   

 

Sunday was a beautiful day here so we went off to Polesden Lacey for the day. We had a lovely lunch and then sat out on the lawn for the afternoon reading. After we got home I went online and booked the busses for my summer holiday. I am visiting all three of the former Soviet Baltic states of Lithuania, Latvia and Estonia - flying into Vilnius and then bussing from there to Riga and Tallinn before flying home from Tallinn. July is high season in that part of Europe and the busses do get booked up so I thought it best to get it done so I can let my accommodation know what time I will be arriving. I also booked an air ticket to Budapest in October and managed to get £40 off by using up most of my Avios. :smile:

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Well nearly the end of May and we've just finished another holiday weekend, some lovely weather although also some severe storms.  I did a nice walk with my walking group on Saturday - 8.5 miles, still recovering!  Went to a garden centre and spent a fortune on plants, now have to find somewhere to put them all. I also bumped into an old school friend who I hadn't seen for years, which was nice.

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It was lovely weather for sure but of course that has all changed today. Coran and I had a quiet Saturday doing various things around the house but on Sunday afternoon we went up to Wembley to see the Game of Thrones Experience at the Arena. We stayed overnight as getting home at that time of night when you live out in the sticks like we do is not the best - and of course being a Bank Holiday made it easier as it meant I didn't have to take an additional day off work for the privilege. The Arena was packed and it was a brilliant show with a live orchestra and choir - the violinist in particular was superb. The female solo singer was also very good and reminded me a bit of Lisa Gerard who did the Gladiator soundtrack (among other things). They showed scenes from the show up on the big screens during the performance with a few special effects as well - at one point they had what looked like flames shooting from the stage - you could feel the heat even where we were sitting at the far end. 

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Sounds brilliant Talisman, the music is fabulous isn't it?  Nice you were able to make a "short break" out of it too!

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I finally finished my Masters for the year (and perhaps forever, depending on how I feel in December!) It really was grueling, nowhere near as engaging or worthwhile as the cert before it. I was just aiming for passing grades by the end. Glad it's done, more time for me!

 

Went to see Derren Brown last night, think it's the first time he's been in Cork. Was fun to see him live, although I've seen all the tricks in the show (as it's a Best Of), before, so that took away from it a little. Still, he got me a couple of times, and it was fun to see stuff like the blindfolded mind reading in real life.

 

It's way too hot here for me now, over 20 (22-26 usually) degrees every day. I know that's not hot by most peoples' standards, but it's near 100% humidity all the time, doesn't go down below 15 degrees at night, so I basically just just have to turn my head and sweat pours out of every pore. On Monday I went to Smyth's with OH to pick up a new game, 45 mins total maybe in the sun, and I had a pounding headache for the rest of the day. Every time I took a damp cloth off my head there was an incredible pressure all along the surface of my head which felt like my brain trying to escape. Rotten. Hate heat and summer. Roll on Winter!

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