A Useful Tool to Help You Choose Your Next Great Read

Screen Shot 2016-08-24 at 7.24.14 PMAs much as I love to read, I must admit that I hate the feeling that I get when I FINISH a great book. It’s kind of sad to close the cover on characters you love (or hate), and a plot that kept you thoroughly engaged. The book ends, and the hunt begins. The hunt for that NEXT great book…….

I usually get my next book from one of several sources: a friend’s recommendation, a Goodreads bookshelf that matches my interests, or any one of the books that are “waiting” for me on my own Kindle bookshelf.

I recently discovered ANOTHER source, a website that lists books for you that are similar to the one you love!

As soon as I stumbled upon this site, I typed in some book names to see what kinds of suggestions it offered.

I was pleased with the results.
For example, I entered “Pillars of the Earth” and was delighted to see a list of books generated within seconds. Happily I can report that there were several books included in that list that I have already read and can absolutely agree that they belong there as suggestions for similar books. There were others listed that I haven’t read, and so, ( 🙂 happy time! 🙂 ) I now have more books to explore.

If you are a reader, I think you’ll enjoy giving this a try:
(you don’t have to register or sign in to type in the title of a book and get a list of ‘similars’)


Screen Shot 2015-09-02 at 10.17.31 AM

A Short List of a Few Favorite Shopping Spots

Screen Shot 2015-11-11 at 6.19.21 AMA few weeks back, Apple added a new category to their App Store: Shopping.

Since then, I’ve received a number of internet shopping recommendations from blog followers, friends and a daughter-in-law.
And so, in the interest of sharing, I thought I’d list a few (not all….. so many!!!) of these favorite shopping spots, here, today.

This is just a collective list ….. and not even a complete list. There is no order to this group of shopping sites, just the names and links to some of the places that are used by some of those in our blog community.

Please feel free to add more suggestions in the comment section!

Uncommon Goods



Dodd’s Shoe company











Marks and Spencer
(currently offering FREE delivery to the USA, New Zealand, Canada and Australia).

My personal favorites from this list?
Amazon, Uncommon Goods, Zappos, Craftsy (thanks, Trudi!) and Etsy.

Screen Shot 2015-09-02 at 10.17.31 AM

Need Inspiration to Spruce Up your Home? Enjoy Houzz

Screen Shot 2015-02-09 at 8.35.13 AM This is the time of year that many people use to fuss around the inside of their homes.

A little paint … or little renovation … or maybe more. Walls, floors, kitchens, bathrooms, bedrooms, windows, they all need attention. Sometimes a little. Sometimes a lot.

We Boomers know that in years gone by, when we needed inspiration, our only source was magazines and decorating books borrowed from the library.

But today, the internet offers vast opportunities to explore.

Enter HOUZZ. A website where you can explore in one place …. and save those ideas for later. (Giving a little order to the chaos of the internet.)

This website allows you to search for photos of the rooms you are interested in viewing, or for windows, or flooring, or basically anything home related. I have a 1959 bathroom covered in bright yellow tile, and when I searched for “yellow bathrooms” I was treated to pages and pages and pages of inspiration to update and alter the look.

You can search for anything at all ….. and if you register (free), you can create albums of the photos that interest you. This is your own “idea book,” where you save the photos that you like in one place so that you can refer back, later. Very, very nice!

If you are doing anything at all to your home, and need a bit of inspiration, give HOUZZ a try.

Screen Shot 2014-01-28 at 6.01.13 PM

Find out what’s NEW on Netflix

Screen Shot 2014-02-18 at 7.25.00 PMSometimes I tap on Netflix with a plan. But sometimes I don’t, and I just browse.

Looking at “new releases” or “recently added” will show you new content, but only some of it. Not all of it.

Recently I learned of a website where you can see it all, giving you even more choices as you fire up your iPad Netflix app.

At What’s New on Netflix, new releases are shown day by day. Every day. See what was added to Netflix today….and yesterday….and the day before. A new way to browse!

What’s New on Netflix USA

What’s New on Netflix Canada

What’s New on Netflix UK

Enjoy! 🙂

Screen Shot 2014-01-28 at 6.01.13 PM

Where is the Sun? SunCalc has your answer

Screen Shot 2014-02-16 at 8.20.19 PMAs the Northeastern US has been pummeled by snow, the roads have become treacherous day after day after day.

Just look at the mess on the Pennsylvania Turnpike last Friday. 5 miles of accidents. Over 100 cars involved. Good grief. (can you say “demolition derby”, boys and girls?)

Although this string of accidents is still under investigation, it is likely that icy roads, sun glare and drivers who were moving too fast for the conditions are all to blame.

As I watched the coverage of this on TV, I was interested in the “Sun Glare” discussion. I learned that there is a website that will calculate sun direction.

On SunCalc you can enter ANY address and apply ANY date to that address, and see the angle of the sun for sunrise, midday and sunset.

While it’s not something that would be everyday handy, I can imagine situations where this would be great information to have. Campers and hikers, for sure. Any other ideas?

I looked at the sun direction aimed at my own home, and confirmed that maybe it wasn’t a good idea to take down the tree that protected my picture window from a full blast of direct sun in July. uh oh 😯

Screen Shot 2014-01-28 at 6.01.13 PM

Simple English Wikipedia

Screen shot 2013-07-10 at 8.28.57 AMWe are all familiar with the on-line reader-written Wikipedia. Although over the years it has been often criticized for errors, it has been gaining respect for being a surprisingly reliable source of information. While not accepted as a source for scholarly work, it is often an excellent place for the average information-seeker to learn quickly about the life of a bumblebee, the work of an 18th century author or an explanation of scientific phenomena. I turn to it myself quite often. Sometimes I learn ‘enough’ to satisfy my question, and other times I use it as a bouncing off point to research further.

Recently I learned about another Wikipedia.

It’s called Simple English Wikipedia, and it is designed for use by people whose first language is not English.

It is not a dumbed-down version. Rather it is written with basic English and shorter sentences.

From the cover page of their website: “We use Simple English words and grammar here. The Simple English Wikipedia is for everyone! That includes children and adults who are learning English. There are 101,790 articles on the Simple English Wikipedia.”

Simple English Wikipedia. What a great idea!

Screen shot 2013-03-06 at 7.27.02 PM