Weekly check-in

Sunday, September 18, 2016 Permalink

I’ve been home from my conference for nearly a week now and – in many ways – feel like I’ve achieved little. However… I’m happily ensconced in my own house so everything’s gotta be good, right? #spoileralert: The answer’s “Yes, mostly.”

Before I share the exciting trials and tribulations of my life, I’ll start with my reading and reviewing.

What I read

I actually did some reading. Not every night, but on a few nights amidst other commitments – like breaking my antenna amplifier and accidentally almost shocking myself. Literally.

I started the week with Sophie Hannah’s Closed Casket, which I’d been planning to get to for over a month! I then leapt into Gayle Forman’s Leave MeĀ – which accidentally got packed early in my house-move and only reappeared a week or so ago.

And finally I read Melina Marchetta’s Tell The Truth, Shame the Devil. For my fellow Aussies, Marchetta’s the author of the popular young adult book and movie Looking for Alibrandi. This book was very different. And very enjoyable.

tell-the-truth-shame-the-devil-aus

What I wrote

Not only did I read. But I wrote stuff as well. Shocking I know. My motivation and work ethic seemingly knows no bounds! There were no ‘personal’ posts however… and everything this week was tres bookish!

My Top Ten Thrillers OF ALL TIME – my first time joining The Broke & The Bookish for the Top Ten Tuesday.
Closed Casket by Sophie Hannah – returns to us the acclaimed Hercule Poirot. There are some obvious differences to the Dame Agatha’s Poirot, but it was an enjoyable read
Leave Me by Gayle Forman – the first adult novel by the young adult author and one that focuses heavily around relationships and balance.

Leave Me by Gayle Forman

What I did

I worked… which really wasn’t that exciting, but I also had moving-house related chores. My new mattress finally arrived. I dropped a couple of hundred bucks getting my antenna sorted (and the great amplifier-breaking incident of 2016 shall be never spoken of again!). My uncle came and helped me work out how to change my gas bottles… it is indeed my first time ‘cooking with gas’. (#seewhatIdid there?) *

And just when I thought things were under control the pump to my water tank stopped working. I have town (mains) water, but my toilets, washing machine and outdoor taps are hard-wired to only use tank / rain water. After some investigation… ie. me posting photos to Facebook and asking for advice, the same uncle helped me identify that my pump was faulty and so I’ve got someone coming out on Monday to have a look at it. And am hoping I don’t need to buy a new one. Sigh.

Of course I had invited friends over for Saturday afternoon drinks, and their 5yr old boys were equally horrified and intrigued by the idea of filling cisterns with buckets of water when they went to the toilet. (Something I’m expert at having lived in Mozambique in the mid 1990s for 16mths!)

reading-and-reviewing-weekly-check-in

The drinks with my local besties however were wonderful. But, I’d recommend NOT attempting to put together something from Ikea after several champagnes! #justsayin

What I plan to do

I have not been to the post office for over a week and a half. I didn’t really have any days at home last week, so have not checked for book arrivals for nearly two weeks. I’m going tomorrow and am hoping for a lot of new arrivals, but a little afraid at the same time. Looking at my ‘Trello’ table (used for monitoring my reading and reviews) I’ve got at least four books from August I’m yet to read as well as some from September.

I’ll take a deep breath and do some rearranging after I’ve been to collect the others however.

I’m also looking forward to getting back into some exercise this week and hoping to make it to THREE classes at the gym. I’m only working two days and am hopefully over most of the moving-house commitments. (Plus the water tank pump man said he doesn’t need me at home when he comes tomorrow!)

And that’s it for my reading and reviewing. It’s drizzling here today and I’m planning on camping out in my study to get some writing and reviewing done.

What’s on your agenda for the coming week?

As usual I’m linking up with Deep Fried Fruit for the Lovin’ Life Linky; Caffeinated Book Reviewer for the Sunday Post; and The Book Date for ‘It’s Monday!’

* Is the colloquialism ‘cooking with gas‘ used in other countries and cultures?

67 Comments
  • Jo
    September 18, 2016

    I giggled a lot at that insta post yesterday re vino & ikea… Have a great week.

    • Debbish
      September 18, 2016

      I know… I just happened to casually mention that I had the box in the garage and one of my friends decided we should put it together that very minute. I lugged it in but then it all got too hard.

  • @Kanga_Rue
    September 18, 2016

    It was a great night xoxo

  • Greg Hill
    September 18, 2016

    Yay for reading! But not for the antenna thing.. yikes! Glad that got sorted. Good luck when the books arrive! šŸ™‚ And Leave Me looks good.

    Love your view w/ the ocean in the distance!

    Oh and yes, “cooking with gas” is a thing here too.

    • Debbish
      September 18, 2016

      Oh phew Greg! I was a bit worried there for a moment. I thought I was being so clever putting it in and then realised a lot of my Sunday Post audience is overseas and they might not understand how hilarious I really am! :-/

      I enjoyed Leave Me but suspect it won’t be as popular as Forman’s YA work!

  • seizetheday20
    September 18, 2016

    Yep, I can confirm that alcohol and Ikea construction is not a winning combination! Enjoy your week šŸ™‚

    • Debbish
      September 18, 2016

      I was just watching and my enthusiastic friend was trying to read the instructions and couldn’t work out which way the very first two pieces had to go together. In fairness it probably wasn’t because it was her 3rd champagne, those Ikea instructions can be very misleading!

  • Laurel-Rain Snow
    September 18, 2016

    That’s a nice terrace you’ve got, with a great view. As for putting things together while drinking wine….it may not be recommended, but it could be a lot more fun than doing it without…just sayin’.

    Your mention of the post office reminded me that I haven’t been in four days or so….but I wasn’t expecting any books or packages. However, one never knows. I need to check it out!

    Enjoy your books and your week. I loved Leave Me.

    Thanks for visiting my blog.

    • Debbish
      September 18, 2016

      I’m sure there’s some ideal ratio of wine to Ikea assemblage Laurel. Maybe after one glass but before the second! One of my friends offered to come and shelve my books (alphabetically) over a few wines as well. šŸ™‚

  • Sydney Shop Girl
    September 18, 2016

    Melina has a new novel out! Must track this down.

    Rainy days are perfect for sitting down and getting things done.

    Here’s to a great week ahead!

    SSG xxx

    • Debbish
      September 18, 2016

      Yes, it’s only just recently out and centred around a British policeman and his daughter who was on a bus when a bomb went off – it follows the investigation etc…

  • Genesis @ Latte Nights Reviews
    September 18, 2016

    Tell the Truth, Shame the Devil looks very interesting!
    It sounds like you had such a troubled week :/ Let’s hope this coming week is relaxing for you.
    Genesis | Latte Nights Reviews

    • Debbish
      September 18, 2016

      Ah yes, I have my fingers crossed Gen!

  • adventureswithabooknerd
    September 18, 2016

    Ikea is a great place to get furniture, but the set up can be brutal! It took me and my brother 2.5 hours to assemble my bookshelf! I don’t have a lot of plans for this week, but I do need to figure out what’s going on with my blog. For some reason Nortan Anti Virus is saying that it’s dangerous. I clicked to ignore it because I know that my blog is safe, but other people won’t know that! I have no clue how to fix the situation, and I must do research to solve this problem. Have a good week. šŸ™‚

    • Debbish
      September 18, 2016

      Oh no, sorry to hear that about your blog – so frustrating! I used to always go to spam comments on someone’s blog once and I never knew why!

      Years ago I bought my bookshelves from Ikea and managed them so as I live alone it can be hard with large items. I bought a table there recently but thankfully the husband of a friend of my mother’s was visiting and put it together while I was away last weekend!

  • Maree
    September 18, 2016

    I really enjoyed If I Stay; so Leave Me is definitely on the agenda. Have a great week šŸ™‚

    • Debbish
      September 19, 2016

      As I mentioned, I didn’t read If I Stay Maree, but did see the movie…

  • Denyse Whelan
    September 18, 2016

    What a few weeks….and to think just a few months ago you didnt even think the apartment would sell. I hope that this week brings you more time to settle in and learn about how it is to be in a new space and place. Loving the updates!

    • Debbish
      September 19, 2016

      So true Denyse… that sale was very up and down. I remember hoping with all of my might that it would go through, so it’s lovely to be here.

  • Kristen @ Metaphors and Moonlight
    September 18, 2016

    It does sound like you have had a rather trial and tribulation-filled week lol. Sorry to hear about the tank breaking! That sucks. At least you got to have some drinks with friends though. I’ve never attempted to put together IKEA furniture period. The most I’ve ever assembled was a chair I bought this year that came in literally four pieces. I felt accomplished just doing that lol.

    I had never heard the term “cooking with gas,” but maybe that’s just me?

    Good luck getting back to exercising, and may you have lots of awesome books waiting for you at the post office!

    • Debbish
      September 19, 2016

      Heading to the Post Office this morning Kristen – catastrophes permitting!

      My bookshelves are from IKEA so I’ve had to put most of those together and I’ve got a few other flatpack type pieces (from similar places), but prefer it when they come whole!:-)

  • Michelle Weaver (@pinkypoinker)
    September 18, 2016

    We left a house with a gas stove behind and I really miss it. I’m still not used to the non fan-forced oven as well. Lovely view you have. Good luck with the pump šŸ™‚

    • Debbish
      September 19, 2016

      Ugh… I’m struggling with the gas. I only have a gas cooktop but I’m burning stuff. Plus the bottle was nearly empty so I had to work out how to get it refilled etc… I’ve already been pricing electric stovetops, but decided I’ll give it a few months in case I get used to it!

  • sjhigbee
    September 18, 2016

    Yes… I grinned at your ‘cooking with gas’ quip:). And I’m keeping my fingers crossed that all your niggling little issues with the new pad have finally been sorted out. Though looking at that view from the terrace, I can see why you fell for the place. And I’m beyond impressed that in the middle of all the dramas with water pumps and-that-incident-we-shall-not-mention, etc you have also managed to keep reading AND writing! Hope the drizzle soon clears up and you get a chance to relax a little today:). This is my Sunday Post https://sjhigbee.wordpress.com/2016/09/18/sunday-post-18th-september/

    • Debbish
      September 19, 2016

      Work felt a little full-on last week as well so it was one of those weeks. I was relieved when Friday came (day off) but had a heap of appointments and HOPED it was sorted Friday night when the water tank pump stopped working. *Sigh*

      However… you’re right, the place is lovely so I’m really happy here.

  • Leanne @ Deep Fried Fruit
    September 18, 2016

    Oh Lord! An almost choking and a toilet back up? Shit! Literally. (see what I did there?)
    Well, I’m glad you’re surviving it all.
    Also glad you’re cooking with gas.
    Shall we get back to exercise together? I’ve done nothing but a short bush walk. I’m really in need of some motivation in the walking department.

    • Debbish
      September 19, 2016

      I see what you did there! šŸ˜‰

      I’m going to water aerobics this morning Leanne – providing nothing untoward happens to prevent it – and I know I’ll feel better as a result. I’m also hoping to go to the gym Thursday AND Friday!

  • Maureen Beatrice
    September 18, 2016

    OMG.. Ikea is hard enough without the Vino! LOL. Iā€™m always short on screws!!
    It sounds like you had some great reading time this week. šŸ˜‰
    Have a great week and Happy Reading!

    • Debbish
      September 19, 2016

      The first thing my friend did was check the screws and parts Maureen, so I think that’s right. It was step number 1. on the instructions that was all a bit too hard!

  • Annemieke
    September 18, 2016

    Fingers crossed that you won’t have to replace the pump. But sounds like other than that you are settling into your new house just fine. šŸ™‚

    • Debbish
      September 19, 2016

      I am Annemieke and yesterday (Sunday) I spent 7hrs straight at my desk which was just wonderful… even if I did have a sore butt afterwards!

  • Rachel
    September 18, 2016

    I’ve never tried to construct IKEA without alcohol, so I wouldn’t know. šŸ™‚

    • Debbish
      September 19, 2016

      Tee hee… I suspect a moderate amount is helpful to (ahem) grease the wheels so to speak!

  • Grace @ Rebel Mommy Book Blog
    September 18, 2016

    Hope everything works out with the pump and all that. Drinking and Ikea may not mix but probably makes it more interesting šŸ™‚ Have a great week!!

    • Debbish
      September 19, 2016

      True. Also having several people involved makes Ikea interesting though one of my friends was happy to just witness the proceedings and I have to admit, I was just sitting there holding the parts while another (whose idea it was) read the instructions. I need to be in the right frame of mind to tackle Ikea!

  • Lampshade Reader
    September 19, 2016

    Happy Sunday! My plans are to write some reviews that I haven’t got the chance to do yet. ~Aleen

    • Debbish
      September 19, 2016

      Good luck with that Aleen, hope you get through them all!

  • Emma
    September 19, 2016

    I’m convinced plumbing issues are required when you move into a new house. We had three toilets (all in the house) break in the first week and another friend had a bath fall through a ceiling. Sounds like it was also a bit of a laugh dealing with it – though sure you are glad it’s over. Hope no more calamities this week – and you have some good books in your mailbox!

    • Debbish
      September 19, 2016

      Oh yes please Emma, no more calamities. And yes, you do expect a few bits and pieces to go wrong. I’m looking forward to checking my mail, as I also won a beauty pack in a blog competition a couple of weeks ago!

  • Julie
    September 19, 2016

    I’ve STILL never read a Gayle Forman book. I don’t know what I’m waiting for. lol! Hope you are having a great weekend!

    • Debbish
      September 19, 2016

      Well, this was only my second so you’re not too far behind me Julie. It depends on your taste I suspect but this might be a good place to start.

  • Mareli Thalwitzer
    September 19, 2016

    HI Deborah! I mostly read your posts on facebook and enjoy them a lot! And your photos! Had a good laugh at your IKEA and sparkling shiraz one! Love the title for Tell the truth, shame the devil! Clever! Will have a look at it. Hope you will have a great week and I’ll be looking forward to your posts. Here’s my Sunday Headlines:http://marelithalkink.blogspot.co.za/2016/09/the-sunday-headlines-2-missing-mind.html

    • Debbish
      September 19, 2016

      Am hoping to get the review for Tell the Truth, Shame the Devil done today Mareli as it’s already out.

  • kimbacaffeinate
    September 19, 2016

    Well, wine does make things fun! LOL The joys of homeownership..I hope the pump isn’t too costly. I am curious about Tell The Truth, Shame the Devil. Have a wonderful week Deb!

  • charliegirlteachergirl
    September 19, 2016

    What a busy week! Glad you had some help sorting things out at home. It can be frustrating.

    • Debbish
      September 19, 2016

      Yes… as you know, the moving and settling-in thing all takes time.

  • Kathryn
    September 19, 2016

    5 year olds and water – what a mix! So good to have a helpful uncle, every one needs a relation like him. Sounds like you are settling in, and using the study – oh my, such bliss. Saw your review for Leave Me.

    • Debbish
      September 19, 2016

      Yes, I feel guilty asking for help but my uncle rang during the week to see how it was going and offering his help. I’ve always been single and lived alone so HATE asking for help. I usually get to the point that I’m causing my amplifier to spark and breaking it before I call in the professionals… or someone else.

      My dad wasn’t particularly handy in that respect whereas this uncle enjoys pottering around and fixing things.

  • inthegoodbooksblog
    September 19, 2016

    I currently have Tell The Truth Shame The Devil on my ereader waiting patiently for me to get to. I’ve heard so many good things about it.

    • Debbish
      September 19, 2016

      Yes, I really must get my review done today!

  • Nise' (Under the Boardwalk)
    September 19, 2016

    After attempting to assemble items from IKEA, we need vino! LOL I loved Melina’s YA books and will definitely keep my eye out for this one.

  • fuonlyknew
    September 19, 2016

    Yeah. Mixing the grape and thinking, not such a good thing. LOL I love/dread checking my mail some days. especially when I know I’ve bitten off more review books than I should have:)

    My Sunday Post

    • Debbish
      September 19, 2016

      I was surprised (and devastated) to discover I had NO books waiting for me Laura. I can’t believe it! I’ve been quiet on NetGalley on purpose!

  • Jane the Raincity Librarian
    September 19, 2016

    Hmmm, maybe I should try some sparkling shiraz the next time I try to assembly some IKEA furniture – it certainly can’t make things any worse…!! And yes, we say “cooking with gas” here in Canada too, though to be honest I’ve never had anything other than electric appliances – the idea of cooking with real fire terrifies me, I can’t help thinking I’m going to set the kitchen on fire!

    • Debbish
      September 19, 2016

      I’m exactly the same re gas Jane. I used to have an electric barbeque, so the idea of now having to deal with a gas bottle freaked me out! I think I’ve assumed it’s far more flammable than it is. Anyway, I now know how to change the bottle over! šŸ™‚

  • readerbuzz
    September 19, 2016

    Haha, I’m still laughing about you and your friends trying to IKEA it after a bit of wine! Let’s hope all your necessary repairs will be accomplished this week (don’t you wish you had a magic wand?) and that you have a lovely week!

    • Debbish
      September 20, 2016

      Well the toilets are okay again Deb, so that’s a relief. It was just a capacitor apparently, so the pump is working and I can flush my toilets…. Which is good as I was getting tired of filling cisterns with buckets of water!

  • Amanda Barrett
    September 19, 2016

    I hope things are going smoother on the new home front. It is never fun adding in extra expenses such as the antenna and gas. It sounds like you may have a nice pile of books waiting for you at the office. I look forward to hearing what has arrived! I purchased a copy of Melina Marchetta’s book as I have seen/heard and read so many great things about it. I hope it lives up to its hype!
    Have a great reading week Deb and enjoy your new home.
    Amanda @ Mrs B’s Book Reviews

    • Debbish
      September 20, 2016

      There were no books awaiting me Amanda, but that’s okay as I have enough to continue with in the meantime! And yes, I enjoyed Marchetta’s new novel!

  • Jess
    September 20, 2016

    Hurray for handy uncles. I am so not handy so I so appreciate those people in my life!

    • Debbish
      September 20, 2016

      Same… I’ll usually try and have a go at something myself as I’m accustomed to being independent but there are certain things I just have no clue about!

  • yinyangmother
    September 20, 2016

    Hope you are settling into your new home and still enjoying your views no doubt. I reckon Ikea and wine go well, because you have to have something to get you through – but yes perhaps not drinking the champers before you start!

    • Debbish
      September 20, 2016

      Yes Kathy… we learnt that one the hard way!

  • Michelle @ In Libris Veritas
    September 20, 2016

    Here’s hoping for no more random pitfalls with your new home! I’m glad to see you managed to get the old places sold though, I haven’t checked in since before that I think.
    I hope you have a great week!!!

    • Debbish
      September 20, 2016

      Oh yes Michelle, I was very relieved and – despite the hiccups – am LOVING my new place.

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