Nov 28, 2009

The Sunday Salon~ Thankful for you..

The Sunday Salon.com

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Hello friends! I hope that all of your Thanksgiving meals were AWESOME! I was blessed this Thanksgiving to have all the food I cooked turn out wonderfully edible. This is not counting the banana mush I made the night before Thanksgiving; that didn't turn out well at all and I am glad I tried it out beforehand so it didn't ruin the Thanksgiving meal and desserts. We chose to save the turkey until Christmas, for which I was very thankful for! =) Although it was a fairly simple meal, I cooked ham (pre-cooked), mashed potatoes from scratch, corn from the can, stuffing from a box, sweet candied yams from scratch, skillet baked apples, and I even slow-cooked the cranberries! Yum. This was the first time I made some of these and I was happy (thankful!)that everything was perfect, with a few extra trimmings and the pies, etc. And I even managed to clean up afterwards without cussing. A nice day was had with my family and my mum, and I even had time to play Playstation hockey. It is strange how my 7 year old daughter can catch on to everything technological. She masters all computer games and video games with ease. Which is fantastic of course in this digital age; I am proud of her (she beats me 9 out of 10 times!).

Thanksgiving is over. Christmas is coming.. I am sure it will be here before we know it. I have all of the gifts wrapped, though there are a few more coming to be wrapped. But I am excited that the hardest parts are done... the tree is up and decorated too! I am hoping to relax this year and not rush the kiddos to bed on Christmas Eve in order to complete the wrapping chore. I am still trying to think of a fantastically thoughtful gift for my husband and mother. No luck. Marie of ZQuilts recommended a printout of my blog in book format, which is a wonderful idea, but not something my husband would really care about, as he frowns upon the amount of time I put into it in the first place.

Onwards to books for this week, and this will be quick! Bad Marie. I didn't get very far from my last Sunday Salon, due to the holiday preparations. I will finish up my review of Julianne Lee's "Her Mother's Daughter: A Novel of Queen Mary Tudor," and post that Monday. I am also going to host a giveaway for this book as soon as I have interview questions back from the author, so stay tuned for that giveaway opportunity. I have begun to read Alison Weir's newest book on Anne Boleyn, titled "The Lady in the Tower: The Fall of Anne Boleyn", which in essence covers the last four months of her life. In reality, it covers a lot more information and is much like a dictionary of that period, as it details all the facts surrounding Anne Boleyn with her family members, the factions, and the events that occur that all lead up to her ultimate downfall. It is not as simple as old King Henry getting tired of Anne's haughty attitude, and not the simple fact that he wanted a male heir. Weir discusses all of the political positions of the Catholic vs. Protestant parties and the outlook of the people of England as well. And I am just on page 40, (of small print) and reads much like a encyclopedia so far. Which is why I am only on to page 40. I even nodded off at lunchtime reading it.

With the holidays swiftly approaching, and the family obligations doubling, I am preparing to take a full step back from blogging, and the computer in general. I have pressing work obligations to pay attention to as well, with things starting to get very busy there for me. Therefore, I will not participate in all of the daily memes as I am accustomed to, and I won't be be visible elsewhere either. Don't be alarmed if you do not 'see me' around as much! It does take a lot of time to visit and comment on blogs (especially those with comment verification), as well as compose posts, and I appreciate all of the other bloggers who are as active as they are. But I promised myself to make this blog 'fun' for me, and I do not want to see this hobby as another obligation that I must attend to. The end of December makes this blog a year old, which is incredible for me. Especially since it didn't start out to be a book blog as much as it has turned out to be. I had no idea anyone would come and read my posts, or my reviews, or that I would receive books to review in the first place! It's been a wild ride, but it is very time consuming. Although it is rewarding, and I am grateful for the camaraderie, and the group of historical fiction bloggers that I have become a part of, but I still need to remember the most important thing, and that is: personal happiness.

Besides, with the holidays here for others as well, there is no sense in me busting my butt to compose meme-style posts when my regular readers are just as busy as I am, and therefore not reading as many blogs themselves. I do normally receive more traffic with the popular memes, for which I am thankful. This needs to be a book review blog, and I need to focus on reading books. The question is.. can I do that?! I have already become overwhelmed with the amount of review books in my pile. At last count there were 31 books in there. I average one a week, and that makes 31 weeks, more than SIX MONTHS worth of reading to do!!! But I spend so much time on the computer when I should be reading.. but I've been reading your blogs instead of my huge pile of books!! So I am going to force myself to sit back and relax, and read, and blog about it, which is why I started this blog in the first place. I appreciate all of my readers out there, and I love receiving comments and feedback. I thank those commenter's who are frequently in my top commenter's gadget. I know that everyone is as busy as I am, so the comments that I DO receive will be that much more special to me, and I am thankful to those readers that have always been supportive. (Ms. Lucy, JennyGirl, Celticlady, The Literary Omnivore..) I myself prefer to use the Google Reader feature on my iPhone, it loads so much faster than on the computer, and I will try to read all the posts of the blogs that I follow that way. So although you don't see me visit your blog, rest assured that I will be reading most of your posts on the reader, and the ones that I particularly enjoyed will be shared so that it is visible on the Google Reader Widget on my left sidebar.

On to the fun stuff.. I hosted a book giveaway for the Victorian Romance "My Unfair Lady" by Kathryne Kennedy, courtesy of Sourcebooks. The winner was chosen via Random.org and that person is:

BusyBee!

Congrats to BusyBee, an email requesting your mailing address will be going out shortly! I wanted to thank everyone for entering, and remember we will have some more giveaways coming up, as well as some exclusive newsletter-subscriber-only giveaways! (*I just sent out the newsletter, & on it were the details for the first ever exclusive giveaway, in honor of my upcoming Blogoversary. This one is for two ARC's The Highland Rebel, and Wild Highland Magic. One lucky winner will be announced next week! You must be a newsletter subscriber, and the entry instructions are in the Newsletter.)

See the left sidebar, under the Google Friends Connect/Follower Gadget, to subscribe to The Burton Review Newsletter. And be sure to check YOUR SPAM box, the newsletters invariably get delivered there!

I am off to compose a Mailbox Monday post. I will see you all around the blogs.. perhaps less so.. but I will be there! Take care! Happy holidays!