happy giving of thanks

thanksgiving 2013

Happy Thanksgiving!

Happy Hanukkah!

Holiday greetings from warm climes with cold wine and no turkey! Cornish game hens with lemon and rosemary and white wine and garlic instead. They were an experiment but came out surprisingly well.

I am Thankful for so many things this year. Too many to list. For those lovely souls who listened to me cry and held my hands and gave me moonshine, they know who they are. For old friends and new friends. For my family up in Massachusetts who are likely colder than me at the moment but I know they have plenty of cookies. For people who read books and write books and sell books and blog books and whatever the proper verb is for librarians and books. (“Lend” does not seem to cover the full scope of librarian ability.)

This has been a strange year. I think I am ready to wrap myself in the holiday season like a cinnamon-scented blanket and bid 2013 a slow farewell. If today was any indication, I am off to a delicious, cozy start with that.

(Though I was mildly disappointed that the Pekingese didn’t win Best in Show at the National Dog Show. It looked marvelously like something out of a Studio Ghibli film.)

For now I am going to pour espresso over toasted almond gelato and be filled with the sort of thanks that is difficult to put into words.

Wishing you all warm delicious cozy things.


So the post-holiday post has been delayed until now because, as I mentioned on Twitter, my grandmother passed away last week.

She was 95 years old and until recently was still going up & down her stairs in South Boston. It was not terribly unexpected but that does not make it any less sad and I will think of her when I have cups of tea, which is frequently.

I looked through my computer for photographs and while I don’t have any recent ones, I did find this, which I love (I never knew my grandfather but apparently he had fabulous hats):

Thank you to everyone who sent kind words and condolences via Twitter, they are much appreciated.


So, probably obvious but I lost most of my post-holiday, pre-Book Expo week to catch up on things. I will likely not catch up on emails or Twitter replies or things like that any time soon, my apologies. I have to do things like pack. And unpack, I’m not even properly unpacked yet.

Regarding Book Expo America next week: yes, I will be there. Last I checked I wasn’t on the list of authors on the website but I really do have a signing on Wednesday at 11:30am in the Random House booth. Haven’t signed things in a while, maybe more letters will be legible in my signature. Probably not, though.


If you hadn’t figured it out from the periodic palm trees popping up on Twitter, I spent the last few weeks in Florida. Mostly around Fort Lauderdale with a few excursions to Miami for art deco architecture research. I will try to post more photos at some point soon(ish).

I read and I wrote and I flounced around on beaches and I actually got to relax for a change which was splendid. Proper book-centric post forthcoming but the book I enjoyed the most was Imagine: How Creativity Works by Jonah Lehrer. It’s fascinating and also has a very pretty cover.

Speaking of books, while I was away the circus was chosen for the Huffington Post Book Club. I am delighted, of course, though I feel slightly bad as it was the only one of the nominated books not yet out in paperback but I hope all the book club readers enjoy it. Also in UK book club news, the circus was chosen for the Richard & Judy Summer Book Club which is also delightful and flattering and I hope everyone reading it in the summer finds it an autumnal sort of escape.

I will likely not manage a proper Florida recap, but I did have one of the loveliest meals I’ve ever at Market 17 (the dessert involved this, it was magic!) and I would totally go back to dine in the dark. Also I saw more butterflies than I’ve ever seen before in my life and I narrowly escaped an attack by a small pink lizard and I watched ducklings learn to swim. Not all at the same time.

And I watched the sunrise from the seashore while wearing a matching dress. I miss the sound of the waves already.

snowy solstice

We had our first snow of the season, finally! Started yesterday & continued overnight, which meant no late night lunar eclipse watching for us, sadness. Still, it’s nice to have the snow.

I always love the first snow, when everything’s all bright & white & quiet. After it turns slushy, not so much love, but that initial snowfall is always kind of lovely.

It was especially nice to have snow just in time for the winter solstice today, snowy snowy solstice!

The boy got me solstice roses, which are a long story that we do not have time for, but they are tinted bluish-black & marvelously gothic, I’ll take better photos of them tomorrow when I have proper light, but here’s a peek:

It’s feeling very holiday-ish around here, suddenly. Festive & wintery & Carol of the Bells-y. And cold. And snowy.

Trying to hold on to this last week or so before the year falls away from me and December turns into January. Busy, but good busy.


Things I Am Thankful For in this, the last week of November in the year 2009

(an unnumbered list)

  • Kittens.
  • The husband, also known as the boy, also known as the bestest person I know.
  • Chocolate.
  • Lovely friends who live in my computer and listen to me babble about all manner of things via e-mail.
  • (Particularly Kaari, for the aforementioned e-mailing, and Carey, for the wonderment that has been flax-golden.)
  • New lovely people who live in my computer that I’ve virtually met this year and also, two of them make shiny things that you should buy: here & here.
  • NaNoWriMo in general and Chris Baty in particular, for giving me a framework in which to push my creative writing boundaries. (72k & counting.)
  • Azure Ray’s album Hold On Love, which is right music at right time right now.
  • BPAL‘s Now Winter Nights Enlarge, which is my new favorite scent even though it’s not really winter yet.
  • Punchdrunk & A.R.T.’s Sleep No More, which I get to see again next week.
  • The Absolute Write forums, particularly Purgatory, for helping me keep my sanity in this year of literary agent search crazy.
  • Mulled cider. Red Wine.
  • Fingerless gloves.
  • Everyone who reads this blog. Everyone. Seriously.
  • Lip balm.

Happy Thanksgiving to everyone celebrating. Happy everything to everyone else. Have something with cinnamon in it for me.