#Grogu, Best Indie Book, and #AmWatching

Happy New Year! I think most of us were happy to kick 2020 out the door – I know I was. We spent NYE with family and a few friends and once again were lucky to have both sons here. My oldest son and his girlfriend surprised me with a late Christmas gift. I had no idea Build-A-Bear had Grogu aka Baby Yoda and The Child until I saw it on a friend’s blog (thanks, Tessa!). I might have dropped a few hints (or maybe made a sign and paraded it around the house) that I wanted one of my own. They even bought him a Gryffindor scarf. Isn’t he adorable?

About a month ago, I mentioned Subject A36 had been nominated for one of the Best Indie Books in the science fiction category on ReadFree.ly. I’m excited to say it was named one of The 50 Best Indie Books of 2020! Thanks to all of you who took the time to vote – I deeply appreciate it.

Have any of you watched The Queen’s Gambit on Netflix? Several friends recommended it, and I finally got to it last week and finished it over the weekend. I’m not a chess player, but this storyline was so compelling it was difficult not to binge the entire series in one day (I watched three episodes on New Year’s morning). Beth becomes a chess prodigy at the age of nine, but struggles with addiction and other obstacles as she grows older. She’s a flawed MC who isn’t easy to like at times, but you can’t help but cheer her on.

Have a great week in this brand new year!

Christmas and Goodreads Challenge

Hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas! Hubby tested negative for COVID-19, so that was like a bonus Christmas gift for us. We were able to spend a socially distanced/partially outdoors Christmas Eve with friends who are more like family and had both boys here, so ours was perfect. Being an hour north of Nashville and having AT&T as our cell phone provider, our phones were out for a few days, but we were still able to email family and friends.

Santa left Bond, our furry cat friend, new balls with bells inside (his favorite) and catnip mice in his Christmas stocking. The picture shows his favorite thing – wrapping paper. It was hours before we were able to get it away from him and put it in the trash. Just like kids getting new toys and preferring to play with the boxes they came in.

I also added some new items to my nerd cabinet. My book club Secret Santa gave me a couple Star Wars action figures – Han and Chewbacca. The youngest son added Ronin to my Funko Pop collection, and I finally put together the Star Wars Legos hubby gave me last year – almost 500 pieces. All of this joins my Harry Potter Legos (featured here last spring), Marvel golf balls, and Funko Pops Hawkeye, Westley (The Princess Bride), and Ted (the Geek from Sixteen Candles).

I got my Year in Books email from Goodreads, and I exceeded my reading goal by 18 books – soon to be 19. I can’t remember the last time that happened, but since the writing has been so slow this year, it’s easy to see what I was doing instead of adding words to the WIP.

We’re almost finished with this crappy year so hang in there a few more days!

Cats and Vacation

With Thanksgiving travel schedules and lack of anyone close to take care of her, we’ve had my son’s cat, Sora, with us for the past couple weeks, along with Bond, our own cat. They are not friends. At best, they tolerate each other. With Bond’s “This is MY house” attitude and Sora’s “I’m the Queen of Everyone’s Universe” notion, worlds collide. Over the span of two weeks I’ve found tufts of cat fur here and there and witnessed endless chases from one end of the house to another, but they’re both still alive, and I consider that an accomplishment. They take each other’s toys and favorite napping spots and hiss and yowl over nothing – it’s like having toddlers in the house. In the picture, Sora is at the top of the stairs daring Bond to come any closer. As I write this post, my son just took Sora home about an hour ago, and Bond is passed out cold on the back of the couch. It’s hard work being constantly vigilant.

Hubby and I took a long weekend and went to the beach (which is why I’m so behind on emails and visiting blogs – I’ll get there!). Maybe traveling isn’t the best thing to be doing right now, but we needed some time away and had a fantastic mini-vacay. Honestly, I could count on one hand the number of folks I saw unmasked in the airport and resort where we stayed. I see far more on my weekly grocery trip. Lots of social distancing, hand sanitizer stations, and masked employees and guests at the resort and airports that weren’t crowded. I had a few glorious days in my happy place – on the beach under an umbrella, book in hand.

Have a wonderful, safe and healthy week!