Auntie M has been gone: in a physical sense, I was able to get Doc coverage and headed west to Port Townsend, WA for a long weekend celebrating my Screw Iowa writing sister’s MFA graduation.  It was great chance for me to recharge my depleted brain cells, to eat hot meals prepared by someone else, and NOT to deal with daily bed baths, commodes, dogs, sheet changes, exercises, cooking, or physical therapy, not to mention a healthy dose of mental support.  I’d never been to Washington State at all, and would love to go back and explore at my leisure. AND it never rained when I was there!  I stayed in a hotel built in 1898 with 14 ft ceilings over an art gallery and had a great time exploring this neat town.

At home, I’ve been gone in a mental sense: there is not much time to blog, as things are pretty much the same with the added exception of three times a week jaunts to town for the above-mentioned PT.  Since Doc cannot bear weight yet on the bad leg (11 weeks and counting in bed–yikes!) he is working on range of motion to the knee, mostly on his back on a table.  Frank, our great therapist who got me walking again after my bilat knee replacements three years ago, has promised Doc he WILL walk again, although there are some days I know Doc doesn’t believe him.  He is soldiering on, and trying to stay positive, but it’s clearly getting to him.

I’m determined to try to work some time for myself into the daily grind, and to that end, here I am snarking away!  Aren’t you glad I’m back???

Seriously, you need to remember to check out starting next Monday.  The gals are celebrating a YEAR of great eco blogs and there will be giveaways for you to try for, plus neat articles to read.  Yours truly will be blogging next Friday on her eco pet day, too.

On the book end, I’m reading a new one (A Distant Domain, will review when finished) by Val McDermid, that mighty Scot who had the temerity to talk herself into Oxford to read English, and we’re all the better for it.

She was a journalist for 16 years before writing full time, with a range of novel series and stand- alones that are always a great read.  McDermid writes with great craft and a keen eye for characterization, and is a feisty broad who would approve of that tag.  When I interviewed her a few years ago for “Mystery Review” mag, it was just after lunch and she was craving a large toddie to hold her over until tea time!  She and her partner had just had a little boy, and the tough and tumble author found herself humbled and amazed by the experience.  For those of you not familiar with McDermid, she’s the author of several series, including the PI Kate Brannigan novels and a thriller series featuring criminal profiler Tony Hill, televised under the generic name “Wire in the Blood” starring Robson Green.  Here’s McDermid with Robson, he of the seriously sexy green eyes:

Her stand alones are equally brilliant and meticulously researched: A Place of Execution won the Anthony Award for Best Novel, while The Mermaids Singing took the Gold Dagger for Best Crime Novel.  The Grave Tattoo follows a Wordsworth scholar to the Lake District, my favorite place on our great Earth.

That’s the news from NC, where it was 68 today and supposed to snow Sunday night~

Thanks to Google Images