Here it is, the last round-up before Christmas... and almost the last round-up of the year. I've been sitting here in the wee hours of the morning listening to some of my favorite Christmas music (Handel's "Messiah," Jose Feliciano's "Feliz Navidad," and Andy Williams singing any Christmas carol you can think of). I've also been working on blog posts, thinking of trips Denis and I will be taking next year, and making sure I do have everything I need to make Christmas dinner. I get a lot of thinking and typing done at this time of night. I always have.
I've also been thinking of that cowl I was knitting. For some reason, I've hit a brick wall and keep making mistakes on something that was going so quickly and going to be so beautiful. I've unraveled it and rewound the yarn and started making something else. Hopefully, if I give my errant brain and fingers a rest, I'll be able to go back to it and get it done properly.
Yet another thought that's crossed my mind is what an incredible life I've had. I could not have dreamed this up in a million years, and I'm thankful for every minute of it-- even those times when I thought I was going to let go of the end of my rope. All those moments, good and bad, have made me the person I am now, and no matter what you're celebrating at this time of year (even if it's nothing), I wish you a peaceful heart and a peaceful mind. (A new book or two wouldn't go amiss either.)
►Books, Movies & Other Interesting Tidbits◄
- Bookselling in the 21st century: going way beyond the call of duty.
- What it takes to open a bookstore.
- Who is the genius behind Merriam-Webster's social media?
- And so it goes... *sigh* ... A public library has reported hate crimes against Muslims in graffitied books.
- A book an Escanaba, Michigan, teacher read this summer inspired a new project for her classroom, and it's a good'un.
- Long unseen by readers, an H.G. Wells ghost story finally debuts in print.
- Why Nathaniel Hawthorne's daughter might become a saint.
- It was too dangerous for seven-year-old Bana Alabed to leave her home in Aleppo to buy a Harry Potter book, so she tweeted J.K. Rowling. Rowling made the little girl's dream come true, but things have taken an ominous turn.
- If it weren't for the climate, there are many reasons why I'd consider living in Iceland... like their beautiful tradition of giving books on Christmas Eve, the Jolabokaflod (Christmas Book Flood).
►Channeling My Inner Indiana Jones◄
- The forgery that helped make Michelangelo famous.
- The forgotten kaleidoscope craze in Victorian England. (I love kaleidoscopes!)
- For seventy-four years, six World War II ships rested at the bottom of the ocean. Then they vanished.
- A 5,600-year-old ritualistic site has been uncovered near Stonehenge.
- Ancient inscriptions show that life once flourished in Jordan's Black Desert.
- 130 million-year-old bird fossil yields keratin and melanosomes. Why does this make me think of the gene splicers of Jurassic Park?
- The mysterious lost ships, HMS Terror and HMS Erebus, are revealing new layers of clues in the Arctic.
- A 7 million-piece mosaic has been uncovered in Jericho after being hidden for eighty years.
►Channeling My Inner Elly Mae Clampett◄
- A massive sea otter jumped into a California man's kayak on the man's birthday.
- Once extinct in Washington, fishers have returned to Mount Rainier.
- A store owner's dog does the funniest thing with all the customers.
- I can certainly see why these Manitoba polar bear photos won a grand prize and a spot in the Smithsonian.
►The Happy Wanderer◄
- Enjoy book-themed travel with new literary city guides.
- Ann Patchett's guide for bookstore lovers.
- Mexico is hiding the world's largest pyramid.
- This 3,200-year-old tree is so big, it's never been captured in a single photograph... until now.
- Spectacular images show why you should take the Great Ocean Walk-- a scenic route in Australia.
- A stretch of New Zealand sea floor that was lifted by a recent earthquake is now a cliff on a beach.
- Here are some fascinating photos from the secret trash collection in a New York sanitation garage. Love it!
►I ♥ Lists◄
- Eight things every book lover does in the winter (climate cooperating) because it's the perfect season for reading.
- Ten television programs the British are watching in December that Americans can keep an eye peeled for.
- The New York Times' ten best crime novels of 2016.
- The ten greatest movie sequels of all time.
- South Florida.com's best mystery novels of 2016.
That's all for this week! Don't forget to stop by next Friday when I'll be sharing a freshly selected batch of links for your surfing pleasure.
Have a great weekend, and read something fabulous!