The heatwave has finally broken (at least just a little) and we have had a few spectacular evenings to spend together riding bikes and enjoying the local scenery.
 These shots are from a short jaunt to Inspiration Point, which overlooks that amazing skyline that I drove toward in my tiny honda civic many years ago as I moved from New York to Colorado.
 This view brings me so much joy.
 It also holds so much history, from my dad's early days attending highschool in Denver as the precocious son of a family of migrant workers (he was valedictorian of his class at Denver's East High, in spite of the fact that much of his family still barely spoke English), to my own early days as an independent resident of the state of  Colorado, to the day that my Denver-raised husband and I moved back down from the Vail Valley where we first met and fell in love.
 We started the long and arduous process of adopting the Q not long after moving down to Denver from ski country, and it was to Denver that we brought her on our return trip from China just after the Olympics.
 Here she is re-reading (for the millionth time) a letter from a blog friend.
 This is such an amazing picture, isn't it?
 Do we look like we're about to jump??

 I adore these shots of Daddy and Q.

So here's the thing: I've put it off as long as I possibly could, but Q's next (and possibly biggest yet) surgery is on Thursday. I have been trying not to get worked-up about it, but from what I've read, this may be her most difficult surgery so far (and we've been through some tough ones). We had expected to spend only a day and a night in the hospital, but I've recently learned that some kids spend up to six days in hospital after this kind of surgery. Safe to say that I am now beginning to panic. 
So here's the thing: I'm going to need some moral support. 

If you read this blog, and if you care to, I'd love it if you'd help me out over the next few weeks. I'm desperately in need of escapist reading. So if you have time, or if you care to, I'd love it if you'd send me links to your favorite posts, sites, etc.  I want fantasy. I want the kind of luxury and beauty that I can only aspire to. 
So, if you have time, help me out here. 
Send me your best links. 
My email is maialarkin at gmail dot com. 

And while you're at it, if you care to send a postcard to Q, she would be so thrilled. Email me for her mailing address. And thanks so much in advance!!!!



FDChief said...

OK. Here goes.

I know you like historical/romantic fiction (since you liked Towles' "Rules of Civility") but I think you've read "Major Pettigrew's Last Stand", but if you haven't it's a very sweet and loving little novel. It's Helen Simonson's first novel and hopefully she has many more in her.

Another well-written historical romance is the Diana Gabaldon Outlander series. A little more trashy-romance-novel but the first two ("Outlander" and "Dragonfly in Amber" are actually decent history and she writes well.

Another terrific series of books are by the British author Diana Norman; almost anything she does is readable, though you might start with her "Makepeace Hedley" series, and especially the first, "A Catch of Consequence". Wonderfully written, and if you don't love Makepeace you just can't find it in you to be pleased.

Judith Merkle Riley writes terrific historical fiction. Hard to say where to start, but my thought would be with her first novel "A Vision of Light", although if you can lay your hands on "The Oracle Glass", "The Serpent Garden", or "The MAster of All Desires" they're all terrific. I think "Master", which was her penultimate book, is my favorite.

FDChief said...

So...more historical fiction?

The same woman who wrote the Diana Norman books also published as "Arianna Franklin", and under that name wrote a fabulous book called "City of Shadows". Great stuff, but dark, very dark - might not be what you want at this point.

George MacDonald Fraser wrote several ripping yarns about fictional (and not so fictional) Victorian heroes. Several are out of print, but he passed away lately and he his now in reprint. Several of his "Flashman" tales are little gems of fiction, a combination of rogues and roguery, derring-do, genuine history, and enough what-ifs to keep you guessing. "Royal Flash" is a terrific introduction as is "Flashman" (the original volume). He also wrote some loving tributes to his time in the Gordon Highlanders now collected into one volume called "The Complete MacAuslan". Great characters, great writing, and I dare you not to laugh at at "Johnnie Cope in the Morning"...

Some others, just personal escapist/junk fiction favorites:

Donald Barr: "A Small Colonial War" (politico-military science fiction/ with a dash of romance. Great stuff)
Karen Traviss: "City of Pearl" (a genuinely original work of fiction)

Lois McMaster Bujold: almost anything she writes is worth reading, but try "Young Miles" - I should have mentioned this one first, because her protagonist is also a young person coping with a congenital injury, and how he and his family do, and survive, and flourish, make a wonderful series...)

Hmmm...let's see. Anyone else?

Here's an earlier version of your friend Katey Kontent; "Cotillion", by Georgette Heyer, brings yound Kitty Charing to London to meet with the haute ton and, in particular, my favorite character, The Honorable Freddy Standen, whose comment on the Elgin Marbles alone is worth the price of admission: "Not a head left on one of 'em! A dashed take-in, if you ask me!"

...I'm thinking, here. Give me a minute.

FDChief said...

Wait - here's one Debra and I just finished; "The Shadow of the Wind", by Carlos Ruiz Zafon. Lovely tale, a real page-turner. The sequel, "The Angel's Game" is supposed to be just as good.

Well. That's all I've got. We'll be thinking of Q, and all three of you, as well as sending you our most optimistic thoughts. Good luck, and all our thoughts for a happy Friday morning...

Merisi Vienna said...

Wondrous. Gorgeous images!
My heart goes out to you and Q and my very best wishes. I am back in V and will get in touch by mail.

Di said...

Your photos, as always look magical. I'll be thinking of you all this week. Have you discovered Pinterest yet - lots of inspiration and beauty there. If you haven't I can send an invite - I'm not sure if there is any waiting time anymore. You could while away hours here.

Happy to send a postcard to Q - will email.

Michele said...

Cards and postcards will be on their way and I'll be thinking of all of you this coming week. Huge hugs.

Flotsam Friends said...

My thoughts are we you and Q. I'd love to help you and her. Please e-mail me your postal address.

Shokoofeh said...

My thoughts are with you and the little Q. I will send you favorite links for sure.

....... said...

everything gonna be ok! i ll send a postcard for her and think of you as well

all the best


Anonymous said...

I read your blog every post for a very long time, silently ,,, not leaving comments,, well a couple,, your story touched my heart,, really did,, Q is just a little doll and I love your art.I am an artist who is gradually going blind, I had a head injury whick robbed me of my sight in one eye and as thescar grows its taking the sight from my left.There is no surgery for this and I am racing through my days to acomplish all I have yet to do.I'm not seeking sympathy here,, I'm just telling you this because I wanted you to know reading your blog during a very painful part of my head injury journey was a ground tool.I could always come and have Q light MY life up for a monent, I will always thank you for that,, so there ya go,, now I've told you,, I will be keeping Q and yourfamily in my prayers and will be sending all positive energy,, please be happy,, thisis just a bump in your road,, I think I said this once before before her last surgery,, you will look back on this and it will be nothing but a wink in time,,I know this isn't what you meant by interesting reading but somehow I just felt moved to reveal this to you today,Please pardon my typing but I'm typing from memory most of the time,,

Amélie said...

An incredibly beautiful set of photos. Really great pictures of Q with her letter. My heart will be with you and Q on these difficult times.

Ling said...

one of your best posts yet. love it love it LOVE it. especially the one of little Q sitting with the sun behind her.

i'd love to send Q an email postcard, so i'll send you a request.

and sending you lots of happy thoughts, wishes and hugs for you and the family!


Parental Control said...

Read An Awesome book by Dallas Clayton, if you have not already its available to read online, I have bought two copies for my boys because they loved reading it so much

I think you and Q may like to read it together.


Anonymous said...

I've got a K.
You've got a Q.
Well wishes & Love from a 3yr old & mama to you.

Woke up this mornin' with the risin' sun
three little birds besides my window..
singing sweet music..
singing just pure & simple ...
this is my message to you..ou..ou
baby don't worry..
about a thing...
cause every little thing is gonna be alright.
~Robert Nesta Marley

kenza said...

Oh I am with you all. I have a few smiles of Petit Caramel but will post more and some laughter too just for you and ! and the family. Miles de besos para todos. Todo estará bien mi linda.

Yoli said...

I think Laurie said it beautifully. Everthing will come to pass and she will be fine. I will send Ms.Q a card and you my silly links.

Satu said...

You are so beautiful and I loved the photos.

alliot + iza said...

Dear Maia,
I came across this blog recently and this post is amazing. Hope you would love this :)

The Wanderers' Daughter said...

Alliot, thanks for linking this - I ADORED spirographs when I was a kid, and have been looking for something along those lines for Q.