Top Ten Tuesday: Stacked For The Summer

I have no business going to the library.  Or maybe I should work at one.

The self-imposed book-buying ban is still on.  Sometimes it slips off.  Such a tease.

I got three more books from the library yesterday, and this is how I’m stacked for summer reading:


The Family Fang

The Echo Chamber

Dandelion Wine

The Psychopath Test

Cat’s Cradle

The Magicians

A Discovery of Witches


The Best of Everything

Dear Scott, Dearest Zelda

I’d also like to finish American Gods, Cat’s Eye and Kafka on the Shore.

And maybe I should work on a summer writing list.

What will you be reading this summer?

(Post inspired by The Broke and the Bookish.)

A Blessing Of Flames

My new favourite sound is the pop of a champagne cork.  There was lots of popping this weekend to officially celebrate the engagement of The Butterfly and The Penguin.  Saturday saw 364 days until the wedding.  Not even a little rain could damper our mood or the bonfire.

Sarge’s best man has a burning twice year.  Bits of wood and old furniture go up in flames in the name of friendship and film references.  This time, we called it an Engagement Burning and toasted marshmallows and bubbly.

A lot of the photos featured a chicken hat.  And me stuffing my face.  When I wasn’t eating, I was laughing.  Or exclaiming ‘I’m getting freakin’ married’, at which point I would hug Sarge. Or a member of the Bridal Crew.  Or my Dad.  Whoever was with closer.

At various points during the day, I thought of people who couldn’t be there.  And I had a moment for each of them.  And then we got serenaded under a gazebo by the only friend I have who has curlier hair than I do.

Dad wore his beard hat, which looks surprisingly like his own beard.  There in the rain with Dad on one side and Sarge on the other I thought, best day ever.  And then Dad said, ‘I’ll be alright.’

‘Yes.  Best day ever,’ I said aloud.

‘So far,’ said Sarge.

Most people left to catch the last train, but there was dancing and singing in the living-room until 3 AM.   Everything from Queen to Edith Piaf to Starship.  And nostalgia mixed with YouTube and cider results in The Macarena.

‘Lorna, turn off the video.’

‘It’s not on.  Iforgottopressthebutton.’

The next day, after coming home with cards and flowers and a patched up flat tire, the conversation went something like this:

‘If you delete the video, I’ll delete that photo of you and the marshmallow skewer,’ said Sarge.

‘Deal,’ I said.

Our relationship is based on love, respect and lack of blackmail evidence.

Photos courtesy of my future sister-in-law and FotoRus.

Words On Love

Since Sarge and I decided to have our wedding invitations printed, the next question is:  What awesome and entirely appropriate quotes will we include on the invitations?

Last night at the pub I may have said, ‘I’ll arm-wrestle you for that one.’  And now I can’t remember which one was on the block.

Anyway, I thought I’d share some words on love that we both love:


“Being deeply loved by someone gives you strength, while loving someone deeply gives you courage.”
Lao Tzu


“We’re all a little weird. And life is a little weird. And when we find someone whose weirdness is compatible with ours, we join up with them and fall into mutually satisfying weirdness—and call it love—true love.”
Robert Fulghum, True Love


“I have a million things to talk to you about. All I want in this world is you. I want to see you and talk. I want the two of us to begin everything from the beginning.”
Haruki Murakami, Norwegian Wood


“I love you also means I love you more than anyone loves you, or has loved you, or will love you, and also, I love you in a way that no one loves you, or has loved you, or will love you, and also, I love you in a way that I love no one else, and never have loved anyone else, and never will love anyone else.”
Jonathan Safran Foer


And the epic and so very true ‘Date A Girl Who Reads’


What are some of your favourite quote/words on love?

penguin and heart
penguin and heart (Photo credit: Scorpions and Centaurs)

Scenes From The Mall

I was at the mall for five hours yesterday.  No, I don’t have a job there.  And I came home without a book.  Since my mall trips usually revolve around Starbucks fixes and buying books in bulk, my extended stay is worthy of note.

Sarge and I have had rival mobile phones since I got an iPhone two years ago.  Didn’t want it at first, but because I hadn’t upgraded for years, I got one ‘for free’.  The dudes in the shop practically threw it at me.

They threw me another one yesterday.  Only this time I asked for it.  I now have an iPhone 4.  My Siri is a dude.  This confuses me, because Siri is a girl’s name.  But whatever.  It’s just a phone, people.  A very cool phone, but still just a phone.

I signed my name to lots of bits of paper yesterday.  Then I left both phones in the shop so my contacts and photos could be transferred to the new phone.  That would take an hour.

So I went shopping.  I might have bought what my mother would call a ‘cute top’ for the engagement bonfire this weekend.  I may have discovered I am a whole two sizes smaller than I was at Christmas, the last time I bought clothes.  I may have sat, phoneless and bookless in Starbucks. With a tall hazelnut latte and a skinny (yes, really) blueberry muffin.  I haven’t been trying to lose weight, but it may as well stay gone.

I went back to the phone shop.  ‘Another hour,’ they said.  ‘Lots of photos, over a thousand,’ they said.

893, I thought.  Because my phone is with me when my digital camera is not.  And my phone takes better photos.

And so, I went off in search of yesterday evening’s dinner.  And there was nothing skinny about the chocolate mousse I picked up for dessert.

I circled back to the phone shop.  ‘Three minutes,’ they said.

And then my phone rang.  The new one.  It was Dad.  The conversation went something like this:


‘Did you get my message?’


‘Have you read your email?’


‘Oh.  Carry on, my dear.  Have Siri call me later.’

I signed some more bits of paper and took both phones home.

This is what happened when I tried to ‘train’ the new one:

Call Dad.

Call Dave?

Um, no.  Please don’t.

Text (Sarge).

What would you like to text (Sarge)?

I’m texting using my voice!

Text Izuzu my voice?

Well, maybe.  I have always wanted to do voice-overs!

Check the weather in Edinburgh.

Check in with Bro?

I wish, Siri.  Thank you.

What time is it in New York?

The time in NYC, USA is 11.41 AM

Buy Doritos.

I can’t do that for you.  Sorry to disappoint you.

That’s OK, Siri.  You’re just a phone.  And I should probably have grapes instead.

Image representing Siri as depicted in CrunchBase
Image via CrunchBase


Reading Through The Stacks: The Reading Room

Since the office/writing room/reading room has been reclaimed from the cat, my reading speed has improved.  I can read 376 words per minute.  Staples says so. What’s your reading speed?

Recent reads have been:

The Art of Fielding – I was right there with this, until the end.    That seems to be my go-to one-liner recently.  It just felt too neat.  More verbose ‘review’ may be coming soon!

Full Dark House – This one I got from a Goodreads group giveaway.  To me, the ending improved my reading experience.  I may send this one to my Mom.  The last book I sent her was Best In Show: Knit Your Own Dog.  Because it combines two of her favourite things.

The Invisible Circus – This one made me weep.  The last one to do that was The Particular Sadness of Lemon Cake.

You and I –  There exists somewhere a recording of my Grandfather and his brother driving around Ohio putting the world to rights.  This book reminded me of that.  Awesome.

Current reads:

The Night Circus

Franny and Zooey

The Devotion of Suspect X

And on deck, we have:


A no longer empty shelf!













What are you reading?

What should I be reading?


Domesticated Penguins

The Boy With The Penguin Tattoo. Or something.

I’m getting old.  And I don’t care.  I’m not going out with Sarge anymore.  Because we’re too busy staying in.  I can’t remember the last time I went to a club.  These days, the highlight of my Friday night is a new episode of Come Dine With Me.  And that’s OK.

Take this weekend for example.  For about five minutes, Sarge and I thought we’d make our own wedding invitations.  We got a penguin stamp and a butterfly stamp and a butterfly ‘punch’, which is apparently a Martha Stewart product.  I feel dirty.  I might hate myself.  A little.

Then we went to a café that played Frank Sinatra tunes while we waited for brunch.  A full breakfast for Sarge and Eggs Benedict for me.  I might not hate myself for that one.

After that, we went to use an engagement gift certificate.  We did need some stuff for the house that wasn’t covered in cat hair, and ended up with two robes/dressing gowns and a grill pan.  Yes, really.

I picked mine first.  Sarge carried it around for a while and said, ‘This is nice, I hope they have a man one.’  And he got one.  They don’t match.  Because that would be silly.

We arrived home feeling domestic.  Eager to try out the stamps and ‘punch’ some butterflies.  And it wasn’t just me.  The first thing Sarge did was ink the penguin and stamp his arm.  And the current Filmhouse brochure has a butterfly on the front.  Because we can.

After beer and butterflying all available bits of paper, we decided to send away for printed invitations.

This is why:



























Crafts and beer. Craft beer?