Yes, Zachary, There is a Werewolf Grave

Yes, Zachary, There is a Werewolf Grave

Yes, Zachary, There is a Werewolf Grave

"But shouldn't we wait and go see it tomorrow?", nervously queried 8-year old Zach as the late afternoon sun cast long shadows across the fallen October leaves on the cemetery grounds.

I reassured him that I would keep him safe and that this was something he would really enjoy seeing. Suddenly, we were upon it. The Werewolf Grave. And then it came in all it's glory, the moment I was waiting for - the anxious expression on Zach's face gave way to confusion, then comprehension. The light went on. He got it. With a big sigh he rolled his eyes at me and said, "Mom, you are so weird!" Haha! My mission was accomplished! That was nearly 20 years ago and it remains to be one of my favorite Halloween memories.

The Werewolf Grave has long been a landmark in our town and never fails to bring amused smiles to the faces of the curious. But what I love most is that it resides within the grounds of one of the oldest, most beautiful of cemeteries in our region and incorporates centuries of history.

It's difficult to see it clearly but the names read "WARE" and "WULF"

Last weekend Vi, my trusty bicycle, and I took a leisurely ride through the cemetery. We rode along every path, occasionally stopping to ponder about the lives whose names are engraved on the headstones. In the older sections of the cemetery there are groups of headstones engraved in Chinese and there are many headstones for babies that died in the 1800's. In addition to the Werewolf Grave, there are numerous others that we always stop at, namely those of my grandparents and other relatives, the Tautphaus family graves that overlook the adjacent park (originally built by the family as an "oasis in the desert" during the late 1800's and shared with the public), and a large heart-shaped headstone of a ten year old girl with her name, "Sadie", engraved in her own hand writing.

It may seem odd to you that I visit this place and ponder the minute clues given about those that lie here. But the beauty and history of this place always brings peace to my soul. Life is temporary. Yet lives endure time and influence the shape of all that comes after them.

rosehill2-oct2016

 

Looking Back at 2016

Looking Back at 2016

"A reader lives a thousand lives before he dies. The man who never reads lives only one."

~George R.R. Martin, A Dance with Dragons.

 

What a fantastic year! We read 10 more books and added loads more to our To-Be-Read (TBR) lists. We discovered more about our world and each other through lively discussions, great food, and deepening friendships. What could be better than that?

Take a look back with us over the past year to see a bit of what happens when this super-cool group of book lovers meet to Read More, Discover More, and Enjoy More!

 

The Books We Read

The Handmaid's Tale Book Cover
The Life We Bury Book Cover

Member Faves

With so many different personalities and tastes in books, it's always fun to see which ones end up being favorites (or not so favorites!). 

 

DeeAnn
 
 
Eleanore & Park 
"We read many good books this year, but I think my favorite was Eleanor and Park. It was a delightful, yet haunting love story. There were parts that were sweet and funny, and could be anyone who has experienced young love."

..............................

 

 

Kelly

 

I haveshtumCover_ two favorites for 2016.  First, SHTUM.  I have a coworker with
an autistic son and found this selection to really make me think about the challenges he faces every day--loving his son, caring for his son, and the financial and emotional challenges of providing for his son in the present and future.  This book gives us a glimpse of what life might be like loving someone with special needs. 

Second, The Art of Racing in the Rain.  I have to admit, after reading the description of the book among RacingRainthe other choices for the month--this read was not my first choice. But, as you can see, it was one of my favorites.  It was very easy to read and I found myself not wanting to put it down.  This book brings new meaning to seeing something from a different perspective.  Just when you think there are two sides to every story, there's a third--the dog's perspective.  The book was funny (why dogs eat stuffed animals), sad (the Mom dies), loving (a Dad's journey to keep his daughter), hateful (relatives trying to take a daughter from her father), driven (a man following his dream), and a tear jerker (it all works out in the end).  Just a great, warm story. 

I have loved participating in this book club.  Joining has provided a structured environment where I've enjoyed the opportunity to read books I wouldn't have chosen myself.  I tend towards reading non-fiction and while I still enjoy those books, I've found the selections chosen by members to be interesting, challenging, and the discussions at the meetings very engaging and satisfying."

..............................

 

Catherine

 

Sympathizer

"My favorite was by far and away The Sympathizer. I learned a lot that I did not know before about this important period in history, including why the Vietnam War was fought and how the Vietnamese people felt about it.  It was interesting to hear a Vietnamese perspective for once, one that somewhat told "both" sides of the story. The central characters were extremely well developed, and overall it was an extremely well-written book.  I could not put the
 book down.

GoldfinchThe Handmaid's Tale Book Cover

My next favorite books from the book club were The Handmaid's Tale and The Goldfinch.

 
 

.............................. 

 
Carol
 
 
"My favorite book this year was The Sun Also Rises. I loved Hemingway's writinHemingwayg style; he conveys so much in so few words. He gives powerful, short descriptions of surroundings and emotions. I was amused by the characters, often disturbed by their behavior, and slightly confused that there didn't seem to be a plot to the story. There is a lot of symbolism in the story that offers insight and depth to the otherwise aloof characters, but you have to pay attention to pick up on it. I didn't at first and thought the entire story was pretty shallow. Then in contemplation and discussion I began to understand the symbols and was taken aback at how clever Hemingway's writing was. In the end I loved the story and now realize why Hemingway is considered to be one of the greatest writers of the 20th century.  
 
I am super excited to have accomplished the 2016 Extreme Book Nerd Challenge through our public library; 50 books, each in a different category. I really enjoyed it, although I have never read at that pace before! A couple of my favorites from the challenge are The Alexis Carew Series by J.A. Sutherland, Victoria 4:30 by Cecil Roberts, and a wonderful first-time experience with a book written in verse,  Audacity by Melanie Crowder.

..............................

 

Dawn

 

handmaid

"I love thSympathizere diversity of our book club and the selections.  As I look back at the year, there isn’t one book that stands out and says “this is my favorite”, unlike the previous year.  I’m grateful for our book club, the books that we read and the friendships we have built.  I did read the Sympathizer twice, just to make sure that I didn’t miss anything (as I was the host for that month).  I was shocked at the Handmaid’s Tale as I really don’t want to think of how quickly that could happen to us now.  

I did read (listened) to some others - most of them were enjoyable...Me Before You by Jojo MoyesThe Storied Life of AJ Fikry by Gabrielle ZevinThe Four Agreements by Miguel Ruiz, and A Man Called Ove by Fredrik Backman, to name a few."

 

..............................

 

Book Club Mojo

Our meetings this year were enjoyable, as always. The discussions were enlightening, the food was delicious, and the friendships are cherished. It's impossible to say any one meeting is better than another but there were a few I must mention, such as Kelly's unique and fun experience of having our book discussion in the hot tub and fishing laminated questions out of the water, an outstanding pilgrim's meal and highlights of Catherine and Sarah's 500 mile pilgrimage across Spain, and a couple group activities (a concert by the river and an evening of Bingo at a nearby casino).  Go Novel Gobblers! 

Here's a few snapshots of our get togethers. We'd have more for you but we're usually so involved in the meetings that we forget to take pictures!

Novel Travels Thru Space & Time

Where did our reading take us? Our literary travels crossed the globe and spanned the early 1900's to the not so distant future. Now that's a lot of space and time!  And what about physical travels? One of our members visited Pamplona, Spain as in The Sun Also Rises and carried our very own Rocky Livingstone 500 miles across Spain!

 

How to use the map: Hover over the red dots marking specific locations, click on the images to enlarge them, click on the x in the corner to close them, or even pan and zoom in the map to see more detail. Alternatively, you can scroll through the travel list shown below the map.

 

 

A pretty fantastic year, right?  Thanks for joining us.  Please stay awhile and come back often!

 

Read More ~ Discover More ~ Enjoy More

cropped-ngbcorange11.png

500 Rocky Miles Across Spain

500 Rocky Miles Across Spain

I decided Rocky gets lonely in my pocket all day with nothing but my Chapstick to keep him company. So I found him a girlfriend. Her name is (of course) Adrienne. Her surname can be Tardajos because that is the closest village to where I found her."

 

vzm-img_20160924_081045

Meet Rocky Livingstone.

Rocky is special to me. He and a bag of his friends were given to me by my grandparents. When grandpa retired, he and grandma began the hobby of rock polishing. They are both gone now and I treasure these smooth, shiny, colorfully patterned rocks now more than ever. I have them in a glass vase and every time I look them, or hold them in my hands, it feels like a warm hug.

This past summer my friends, Catherine, and her daughter, Sarah, traveled to Spain to walk the 500 mile Camino de Santiago pilgrimage. I was so excited and happy for them to experience such an adventure together.

I'd love to do something like this but for some reason, I don't travel very often. I recall my uncle having once told me, "The Sudweeks are travelers", and you know, he's right. That side of my family does seem to travel often -  far and wide. And not just touristy types of travel, but ones like visiting relatives in other countries, working in orphanages, living among the locals, hiking, and pilgrimaging. Why haven't I allowed myself to experience travel this way? I suppose it's seemed out of my reach. How silly is that? I decided then and there that I need to think more like a Sudweeks, and like Catherine and Sarah.

Then an idea came to me. I could begin making contributions to my family legacy right now, albeit vicariously this time. I pulled a polished rock from my vase and asked Catherine to carry it across Spain with her. She graciously accepted and slipped it into her pocket.

........................

 

The Adventure Begins!

July 8th - Salt Lake City Airport

Zoom in, zoom out, pan around and explore the map. Click on a point to display photos and captions. Click on individual photos to enlarge them. Click on the enlarged photo to display the scroll arrow. Click on the X in upper right corner of the enlarged photo to close it.  There is also a blog-type view below, that you can scroll through.

 

We've Got Mail!

A Postcard from Spain

Back at Home

August 2016

Just look at Catherine's big smile and tan! Rocky and his new friends, Adrianne and Shelly, look good, too. Catherine also brought home a Spanish coin for me.  SO COOL!   Thank you Catherine and Sarah for sharing your spectacular trip with us!

 

Read More ~ Discover More ~ Enjoy More

cropped-ngbcorange11.png

Rye Bread & Radishes

Rye Bread & Radishes

Rye Bread & Radishes

Several years ago my friend, Carla, shared a Jewish Rye Bread recipe with me from one of her cookbooks, Rustic European Breads. I loved the recipe and purchased the book for myself.  Just the other day I pulled the book from the shelf and as I leisurely thumbed through its pages, I ran across the bread recipe again. I recalled that not only was this bread delicious but you make it in your bread machine! How much better could it get? Well, as it turns out -- much, much better!

I placed the ingredients into the bread machine (sans caraway seeds) and eagerly awaited my golden, freshly baked loaf of rye bread. While waiting, I read back through the recipe and noticed the author's note:

"One of the best ways to eat rye bread is to spread a fresh slice thickly with butter and then top it with rounds of sliced red, white, and purple radish."

Seriously??? Those Europeans must be nutters. There's no way that could be tasty. However, being the great adventurer that I am (stop laughing) and having just picked radishes from the garden, I decided to give it a try.

Much to my dismay it was fantastic! The moist, mildly sour crumb of the rye bread, the sweet, creamy butter, and the crispy, crunchy tang of the radish blended together to make a delightful, rich, completely unexpected bite of perfection.

I take it all back -- Europeans are brilliant! Rye bread with radish is fabulous!    

 

Grab a copy of the book and try some of the recipes for yourself. They won't disappoint!

Jewish Rye Bread Recipe  

 

Read More ~ Discover More ~ Enjoy More cropped-ngbcorange11.png

Jewish Rye Bread

Jewish Rye Bread
Print Recipe
One of the best ways to eat rye bread is to spread a fresh slice thickly with butter then top it with rounds of sliced red, white, or purple radish. Also, this bread is quite good for sandwiches and other spreadables such as pates or foie gras.
Servings
1 1-pound loaf
Servings
1 1-pound loaf
Jewish Rye Bread
Print Recipe
One of the best ways to eat rye bread is to spread a fresh slice thickly with butter then top it with rounds of sliced red, white, or purple radish. Also, this bread is quite good for sandwiches and other spreadables such as pates or foie gras.
Servings
1 1-pound loaf
Servings
1 1-pound loaf
Ingredients
Servings: 1-pound loaf
Instructions
  1. Add all the ingredients to the bread machine pan. Process on the basic bread setting. Remove bread from the pan to cool on a rack. Store wrapped in aluminum foil or in a paper bag.
Recipe Notes

From the book:

Rustic European Breads from Your Bread Machine 

by Linda West Eckhardt and Diana Collingwood Butts

 

 

 

Powered byWP Ultimate Recipe