October 2020 round up

My early draft of this post started with ‘this may be the last month that I’m not at work’ and I was right!

What I have read

I barely read anything in the first part of the month, partly as I didn’t know what I wanted to read next. So I chose half a dozen books to put at the top of my ‘to read’ list and made a start on them, so that way I got another five read.

  • Undead and Uneasy (Undead #13) – MaryJanice Davidson
  • Custard Tarts and Broken Hearts (The Factory Girls #1) – Mary Gibson
  • Stacey the Maths Whiz (The Baby-Sitters Club #105) – Ann M Martin
  • The Last Smile in Sunder City (Fetch Phillips Archives #1) Luke Arnold
  • The Indian in the Cupboard (The Indian in the Cupboard #1) – Lynne Reid Banks
  • Why Mummy Doesn’t Give a ****! (Why Mummy #3) – Gill Sims
  • A Mother’s Journey – Donna Douglas
  • Storm Front (Dresden Files #1) – Jim Butcher
  • Feminism: Ideas in Profile – Deborah Cameron
  • The Tales of Beedle the Bard – J.K. Rowling

I’ve still to finish:

  • The 1950s Scrapbook – Robert Opie
  • Gender Rebels – Anneka Harry
  • Out of Practice (The Larkford Series #1) – Penny Parkes

The Last Smile in Sunder City and Storm Front were recommendations for fans of the Rivers of London series. Neither lived up to those books but I enjoyed them both, probably Storm Front more so. Unfortunately that’s the first of something like 25 books and short stories, so a bit of a commitment if I decide it’s worth continuing.

I read the Donna Douglas one because I’ve read everything else she’s ever written and the Nightingale Nurses series is one of my favourites. This new one was good but not as good.

Feminism and Gender Rebels I started ages ago. Feminism one was a bit hard going, or felt so when I had first started reading it but seeing as I’ll be back at work soon I thought I should finish at least a few of the 15 books I’ve had for the past seven months… I finished it in one evening last week. It was interesting but took itself pretty seriously. Obviously it’s a serious subject but I have read some others that have managed to inject a bit more personality and wit. Not as much as Gender Rebels tries to do, though. That’s still shockingly bad and I can only manage two or three of the stories at a time.

And lastly, I had seen the film of The Indian in the Cupboard many years ago and enjoyed it and now I’ve read the book which was just as good. I have also discovered it’s part of a series so I will probably read the rest at some point. (I also want to rewatch the film too!)

What I have watched

  • Hollyoaks, which is now on 4 days a week and just as ridiculous as ever, especially with the very half-hearted mask wearing and social distancing they are portraying.
  • More Mythbusters even though we’ve seen it all before, I can rarely remember whether the myths were busted or not.
  • Hoarders on Amazon Prime. It’s an American series so it tends towards the over-dramatic and has loads of reminders of what we’ve already seen but it makes me feel better about the state of my house! (I can recognise a lot of the hoarding tendencies in myself as well, though).
  • Only Connect which is back with Perspex screens between the contestants, and also Task Master.
  • Phoebe in Wonderland which turned out to be a very strange film, least of all because Felicity Huffman’s wig was so bad.
  • The first episode of The West Wing which I found extremely dull!
  • An old documentary about Monty Python – Monty Python’s Almost the Truth (from 2009!) as I found it on Netflix and I love the Pythons. When I’m done I’ll need to rewatch Holy Grail and Life of Brian.

What I have done

  • Took a trip to Glen Isla, to a favourite spot of ours when my sister and I were little. The park is almost unchanged after at least twenty years (including the tractor climbing frame below) so it was great to see Brodie enjoying it.
  • Visited the St Andrews Botanic Gardens for a wander, it was still nice even in October but of course the glasshouses were shut due to Covid. On our way home we stopped in town and rode the giant ferris wheel which was there for the week. I thought Brodie might have been scared but he loved it – mostly because he could see all the cars and buses from up there. It was me who found it slightly scary to begin with!
  • Had two Brodie-free nights as he slept over with his Auntie Kirsty, luckily he was very well behaved and slept all night!
  • Reorganised my Enid Blyton’s Magazines in new storage boxes
  • Baked a banana loaf with Brodie (and burnt it slightly) but had slightly better luck with making biscuits. Somehow we made 47 out of a recipe for 24, and burnt a few of them but the rest were fine!
  • Explored a different bit of Tentsmuir/Kinshaldy beach 
  • Finally got Brodie’s hair cut
  • Had an induction at work in preparation for returning in November
  • Looked after my niece and nephew and threw a Halloween party while they were over, we made toilet roll tube monsters, dooked for apples, played musical bumps, pin the spider on the web and had lots of fun.

What I have bought

I have added to my magazine collection with four new (to me) issues from the lovely Sue Bell at Green Meadow Books.

I should have taken a photo of them for this, but I just filed them away in the boxes this afternoon. Typical!

What has your month looked like?

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5 Responses to October 2020 round up

  1. chrissie777 says:

    Fiona, how are you doing with your Goodreads reading challenge?

    At the beginning of this year I decided to try reading 120 booksin 2020 and now I am only 3 books away from my goal.


  2. chrissie777 says:

    After finishing watching season 16 of “CSI Las Vegas”, we are now almost through with watching “Case Histories”, a British detective TV series with a character called Jackson Brodie. It’s filmed in Edinburgh and I love all outdoor scenes.
    Next will be season 7 of “Doc Martin”.

    On Halloween we watched our traditional Halloween movie “The Little Girl who lives down the Lane” with Jodie Foster and Martin Sheen. Plus I’m rereading the novel by Laird Koenig for the 33rd time since the mid 1970’s when the German translation was published. It’s one of my all-time favorite books.

    Due to CV we didn’t do any day trips, but in case it won’t rain on the 3 days before Thanksgiving, we plan to meet two friends to walk around Walden Pond like we did last year and in the previous years. It has become a tradition. But we can only do it if it’s dry, otherwise the path is too muddy.


  3. chrissie777 says:

    “West Wing” is indeed dull. I watched it shortly after I immigrated to the US, but gave up after 2 or 3 episodes.


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