Such a Cozy Summer…

June 13, 2016 at 6:26 pm (Reviews) (, , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , )

Cozy mysteries are where I go to find solace when I’m too tired for anything else… when my imagination is too exhausted to fly with dragons… my intellect burned out or otherwise occupied reading homeschool material to my daughter.  Cozies are for bubble baths, for “I’m so tired, I can’t sleep” nights (thanks, Sarah).  And right now, I’m hooked on a few new ones.

7457122.jpgManor House Mysteries

So far, I’ve read Grace Under Pressure and Grace Interrupted by Julie Hyzy.  The series stars Museum Curator (and mansion manager) Grace as she sleuths around a small town, helping the local police solve the murders that keep happening at her new job.  Naturally, there’s an unfortunate past relationship that didn’t go well, and a new budding one with the local landscaper to keep us involved in the character’s life as she manages to avoid looking like a serial killer – because in real life, how many people are tied to so many murders?  The touch of tourist seasons, southern drawls, and Civil War reenactments remind me of home.

Library Lighthouse Mysteries

ByBookorByCrook-1.jpgI’m now in my third installment (Reading Up a Storm) of the Library Lighthouse Mysteries by Eva Gates, which began with By Book or By Crook.  This series features a lighthouse that has been renovated into a library.  Book Nerds and Jane Austen references abound while the newest librarian and the library cat stumble across – yep, you guessed it – one murder after another.  Again, no one would dare think the Nancy Drew wanna-be is indeed a serial killer with no many murders suddenly happening right under her nose, and of course, she’s the heroine with a terrible romantic past and TWO attractive men vying for her attention. Brain candy indeed.  Each book in this series have occurred within weeks of the one previously and all during summer tourist months near the beach.  Southern drawls, check.  Meddling mothers, check. (Booked for Trouble) Food stuffs and baking references, check.  Also, weird guy who pretends to be British… this character confuses me, but I got used to him.

Next up, a Miranda James series that begins with a title called Bless Her Dead Little Heart. Seriously, how can I pass that up?

 

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When We’re Not Reading – Fall Begins

September 8, 2012 at 10:51 pm (Education, Events) (, , , , , , , , , , , )

Thursdays at the Museum of Fine Arts in Houston is free. I love taking the kiddo to see the ever-changing exhibits there, and this time we spent a lot of time watching the six-minute long digitally animated Tree changing through the seasons and blowing in the imaginary wind.  The exhibit is called “Mike Kelley” and was made by artist Jennifer Steinkamp. It is absolutely lovely, and I highly recommend taking time out of your busy schedule to go sit and experience its luminous, fake leaves.

Another fantastic and *free* thing to do in Houston when the weather is nice is to visit Sam Houston Park/ Heritage Square.  The real life trees you can see are simple amazing, fun to romp and climb, and just a wonderful place to have an outdoor picnic.  You can also go visit the Heritage Society Museum for no charge, the entrance is in the courtyard.  We didn’t stay long, however, because kiddo nearly killed a display and cost the city some priceless treasures.  We’ll try that museum when she’s a bit older.

I grew up visiting Sam Houston Park during the Christmas season, when the Heritage Society houses are lit and apple cider, coffee, and hot cocoa is served in the courtyard.  Choirs sing in gazebos, courtyards, along the paths, and on balconies (I participated every year until I graduated), and it’s just a pleasant way to spent a cold evening.  So I can’t wait to take kiddo to experience a park she already enjoys in its most festive capacity.

The same day we had our freebie adventures downtown, I finished up my day at Half Price Books in Humble at the first ever Poetry Night.  There were only three of us present, but we had a wonderful time eating chocolate chip cookies and discussing the work of Edna St. Vincent Millay, Sylvia Plath, and Emily Dickinson.  It sounds melancholy and macabre, but I assure you it was quite pleasant.  I spent Friday afternoon talking the program up to teachers at Humble High School, so hopefully we’ll have a bit of a crowd next time.  Keep in mind, it’s the first Thursday of the month all semester, and its a great (and totally free) way to spend an evening.

Now its Saturday and we’ve got Corn Chowder cooking in the crock pot, in anticipation of a cold front, and home-made whip cream (flavored with Amarula) cooling in the fridge waiting for an Almond Cake with a Peach-Berry topping.  Kiddo is playing dress up in the library as I type this post.  I love my life.

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