The Lily Cafe Digest #15

Dear readers, I’ve spent the past couple of weeks debating what to write here. First, I wrote about how exhausted I am and probably whined a little too much. Then, I wrote about a few mundane things that have happened to me and my family. But neither made me happy. I was resigned to this posting with what I had written the second time around. Until I read From one mom of a Kindergartener to another and realized just how lucky I am, so I’ve decided to take the grateful route.

I am grateful that my one school-aged child is not in Kindergarten. We’re very lucky he went to preschool and had a little over half a year of Kindergarten in the classroom. While more would have been better, I’ll take what he had. I’ll be forever grateful that he has had some classroom experience, that it’s made transitioning to distance learning a little easier.

I’m grateful that my toddler is a toddler and not a baby. I remember when I became a mom of two and just how instrumental my mom was in helping me figure out how to balance two kids. If she’d been born during the pandemic, I wouldn’t have had my mom’s help and guidance, so I’m thankful my daughter is a toddler who is learning to be independent and who isn’t old enough to be in school.

After what happened to Texas, I’m eternally grateful for what I have: power, water, food, sunshine, warm weather. It’s been awfully windy here in Southern California, but I’ll take it, and I’ll be grateful for what I have, what I’ll likely never have to live through. It’s easy to take things for granted, so I don’t, and now I’m working to do it even less.

I’m grateful for my children being who they are. I’ve read so many accounts of parents going stir crazy with their children, with dealing with the emotional and mental states of not just themselves but their children as well as everyone has been forced into lock downs and shut downs over and over. My kids have taken everything in stride. They still miss Disneyland, but, otherwise, they’ve settled very comfortably into our new normal. To the point where I’m afraid I may never get them out the door again.

I’m grateful for all of you, the people who take the time to read, like, and comment. It’s easy to feel like you’re writing into a vacuum, but knowing there are people, no matter how many or how few, helps. I’d probably keep blogging even if no one read (been there), but I love the community and can’t thank all of you enough for all of the support you’ve given me over the past few years.

I’m grateful for the few people who follow me on social media and put up with me having zero idea of what I’m doing. It’s been so nice to have a couple of people to chat with on Instagram since I mostly dislike that one, but they make it easier to stay. I’m grateful for the 20,000 monthly views I somehow have on Pinterest, which is kind of weird because when I was actually trying to build it up, I seemed to be stuck in the low thousands. Now that I’m only pinning my own content and doing nothing else, it keeps going up. Weird.

I’m grateful to all the authors, publicists, and publishers who so kindly send me books. There can never be enough books in my life, so I’m grateful to them for feeding my obsession. I always feel guilty about taking free books because I know, for indie authors especially, a copy given away doesn’t earn them a cent. But I also feel guilty taking anything at all for free. So I always try to repay with the best review I can possibly write.

There are so many more things I’m grateful for, ranging from the basic necessities of life to the comforts my husband’s continuing employment offers, but I’m sure you’re done reading me by now, so I’ll just end with being grateful for my family, my cat, my friends, all of you. Thank you for dropping by, for clicking “like”, for leaving a comment, for reading what I have to say. It all means the world to me.

Thank you.

Guest Posts

Allan Evans, author of Killer Blonde – Excerpt | Mojgan Azar, author of A Lullaby in the Desert – Guest Post | Jeremiah Ukponrefe, author of Hive – Excerpt

The Bookshelf

Book Reviews:

Fantasy and Sci-Fi

The Frozen Crown by Greta Kelly | Bellarose and Gerard by Carla Reighard | The Mask of Mirrors by M.A. Carrick | Knight’s Ransom by Jeff Wheeler | The Vague Ship by Adam West | Snow Dust and Boneshine by Grendolyn Peach Soleil

Women’s Fiction/Romance

Bella Cigna by Wendi Dass | The Love Square by Laura Jane Williams | Dragonflies at Night by Anne Marie Bennett

Mystery and Thriller

Of Magpies and Men by Ode Ray | Murder at the Church Picnic by Denise Jaden

Life Between the Pages

My Bookish Wish for 2021 | WWW-January 6 | WWW-January 20 | LTB: Why Do You Blog? | Short Story at | When Books Start Talking to You, You Know It’s Time | Books That…Have Fabulous Friendships

Book Blog Tour: 

We Could Be Heroes by Mike Chen – Review | Honey Girl by Morgan Rogers – Review

Author Readings:

Jennifer M. Zeiger, author of Quaking Soul | Smita Bhattacharya, author of Kiss of Salt

Catch Up On Queen of the Garden of Girls

Update | Part 54 | Part 55 | Part 56 | Part 57 | Part 58 | Part 59 | Part 60 | Part 61 | Part 62

Enjoy My Ratio Baking Adventures

How to Make Flatbread | How to Make a Simple Chocolate Cake with Chocolate Buttercream Frosting

Blog Posts I’ve Enjoyed from the Blogging Community

Typically, I write a brief bit on why I liked each particular post, but, with everything going on lately and just feeling even too exhausted to peruse posts half the time, I’ll instead just be listing them as I don’t want to eliminate this part of my Digests just yet.

How to escape from Earth from Bits and Dragons – don’t we all need to these days?

Blogging Truths Be Told: Stalking Your Numbers and Comparing Them to Others – (Part 2) from Degrees of Maternity

The Blank Piece of Paper from Charlie Brown

Here’s What I Know About Writing a Book from The Happily Anchored Nomad

Strange Encounters from KN J Tales and Snippets

Kittens from By Autumn Rain – adorable!

Should Bookish Influencers Edit Book Covers Into Photos If There Are No Physical ARCs? from Pages Unbound

6 Memes for the Reading Obsessed from Elaine Howlin – I love these every week!

How I Plan to Read More Books in 2021 from Dovey Reads – great ideas on how to do it!

The Difference Between Reading a Book and Promoting a Book from Simone and Her Books

Socially Thinking: The Perils of Censoring What We Don’t Agree With from Boondock Ramblings

Today Marks 100 Days of Virtual Kindergarten from Confessions of a Parentless Mother

Allyship Check-In: No 11 from Thoughts Stained With Ink – as a person of color, I can’t appreciate what Nicole does enough!

Honey Girl by Morgan Rogers from Classy X Book Reviews – I love this review so much more than my own! Skip mine. Read this one.

Most Sincerely, kat

You can find a list of all the Digests plus some bloggers I adore over here

8 thoughts on “The Lily Cafe Digest #15

  1. 20,000 is quite a vacuum to be writing into! 😀 I don’t even *try* to cross-platform. …probably because I don’t write into a vacuum; I use a freaking vacuum all the time….

    I always love your posts. Write when you can and stay sane the rest of the time.


    1. Didn’t even know that one existed until I checked on a whim, but I’d rather use a real vacuum right now. It keeps the kids away, or maybe just drowns them out so I can’t hear them.


  2. Wow, first thanks for your mention on blog posts you are enjoying! It means a lot to me!

    I’m stuck in the draft of the next instalment of that story – but I’m sure it’s a phase.
    I just to comment on the current situation – I’d like to write here much more but our schools are closed, and I seriously enjoy teaching my kids at home. I think we are, despite of all, lucky to be able to have them longer than usual as “toddlers” at home. The problem is that we both parents need to work also, resulting on almost no time to review my writings. Anyway, all the best for you & your kids!


    1. I always enjoy your stories, whether or not you ever finish them! It’s fun to be transported to the wild places of your imagination.

      I’m lucky I don’t work so I can focus on teaching my son. Just wishing talking him into doing all of his writing assignments would go easier, but it’s so satisfying to know exactly what he’s learning and how he’s doing. A blessing in many ways, especially to his control freak mother.


  3. Thank you for reading my blog on this and sharing it here. What a strange time it is for so many right now. It is so nice to have this platform as a space to relate and share. Loved your post.


    1. Thank you for sharing what the past year has been like for you! Most of what I hear and read about schooling has been focused on the older kids, so it’s easy to forget there are Kindergarteners out there who might not have ever been in a classroom and are suddenly doing online learning. I can’t imagine how difficult it must be, so thank you for sharing, and, really, all the best of luck!


  4. An attitude of gratitude — I love it, Kat. There are definitely things, people, situations that we all can be thankful for. And, it’s definitely good for us to remember those “things” and recite them to ourselves time and time again. Focusing on our positives (when so many others are going through worse negatives than we can imagine) can totally put life into the right perspective. Thoroughly enjoyed your post.


    1. Thank you! In my neck of the woods, there have been a lot of things that just have me shaking my head, so finding the things to be grateful for often revives my faith in humanity. It is really good to focus on the positives, makes people happier, I think.


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