Sunday, May 22, 2011

Suddenly Sunday

Happy Sunday to everyone -- hope your weekend so far has been full of good things for you! It's been a very busy time around my house with my children's end-of-school year final frenzy: last minute projects, final exams, out-of-town school trips, and end-of-year parties and dances, and for my son, graduation from 8th grade. Whew!

I've been planning a few getaways that I'm very much looking forward to. A New York trip will put me in the city at the same time as the Romance Writers of America annual conference, so I plan on attending the authors' book signing event. Since there are going to be hundreds of romance writers in attendance, it should be a fabulous time to meet some great authors (and discover some new ones).

I'm also super excited to get a little R&R (that means without the kids) at one of my favorite plantations. Nottoway is a gorgeous antebellum plantation (a former sugarcane plantation) not too far away from where I live, and while I've visited it several times, I've never had the opportunity to stay overnight. Here are a few pictures to give you an idea of the home's grandeur. (I could get used to this!) You can click on the photo for a much larger view.

(Do you see the small arched alcove in the middle of the stairways? At one time when guests arrived by carriages along a curved driveway, a carriage boy stood at attention in that alcove and came out to assist with the horses.)

This is known as the famous White Ballroom. It is here where the daughters of the master of the house made their debuts to society, and five of his eleven children were married in the White Ballroom.

Here is the grand dining room. They do not serve guests dinner here now, though -- we will be served lunch and dinner at lovely outdoor tables on a balcony overlooking the grounds.

Tea, anyone? Join me in the Tea Parlor.

These are just two of the countless bedrooms in the home where guests can stay.

Can't you just see the gentlemen retiring here for cigars and brandy in the study? And check out the draperies....reminds me of Carol Burnett's spoof of GWTW, doesn't it?

In book news, I've been on a buying spree lately and have been collecting books faster than I can read them. I'm currently reading A Discovery of Witches by Deborah Harkness and will be reading A Game of Thrones by George R. R. Martin next.

Speaking of A Game of Thrones, I'm having a giveaway of this popular novel, so any US residents may take a chance on winning a paperback copy here at Slice of Life. Click on the novel in the sidebar to take you to the post to enter.

With summertime fast approaching, I hope to have a little more time to get back to reading more. Happy Reading!

Suddenly Sunday is hosted by Svea at Confessions and Rambings of a Muse in the Fog.


Unknown said...

Oh those pictures are just SO gorgeous! You are so lucky and I hope you have a great time and awesome weather! I haven't had the chance to go down south at all - except Williamsburg but that was when I was about 10 and don't really remember it. Now maybe I will think about planning a trip for next summer. I'm doing a beach trip this summer and going to Historical Novel Society in San Diego in June.

Have you read A Game of Thrones before? I really enjoyed it! I have read the second one too but needed to take a break before reading the third.

Joanne said...

Heather -- I would so love to get to a conference hosted by the Historical Novel Society -- that sounds terrific! (Maybe one day....) Can't wait to read your posts about your experience! :)

I haven't read A Game of Thrones, but I'm dying to see what the buzz is about. I'm getting to it ASAP. (And I haven't watched the HBO series, either. I like to read a book before seeing a movie version.) Thanks so much for stopping by!

Melissa @ Confessions of an Avid Reader said...

Wow! What beautiful photos. I'm sure you'll have a lovely time.

How are you enjoying A Discovery of Witches? I read it a couple of months back and really enjoyed it.

Julie at Outlandish Dreaming said...

I visited Nottoway when we went to NO for our 10th Anniversary about 12 years ago - gorgeous! We didn't stay overnight, but had a tour of the home and grounds.

Can't wait to see you at RWA! (I told Lauren you're coming!)

I plan on listening to Game of Thrones next once I'm done with Echo (it is taking me FOREVER to finish listening to it in my car!) I want to know what all the buzz is about too and then I'll watch the HBO series On Demand.

Saw Thor last night - loved it! He's no Jamie Fraser (odd nose), but he was quite the eye candy to look at! :)

Joanne said...

Melissa -- So far it's interesting, but I have only just put a dent in it. I'm fascinated with the Bodleian library and it makes me want to go there NOW!

Joanne said...

Hi, Julie -- So glad you had a chance to visit Nottoway. It's one of the most grand homes still left in the area. Oak Alley is pretty, but not as luxurious as Nottoway. If you ever get a chance, you should plan a springtime trip to Natchez. Mississippi where they have the grand old mansions (they look like Twelve Oaks) along the Natchez Trace -- OMG!!! In spring, with the dogwood, azaleas, and magnolias, you'll swear you time traveled!

I had to go do a quick search for the THOR movie trailer -- you're right, he's not a Jamie, but definite eye-candy -- maybe a Stephen Bonnet! Looks like a movie I can take my husband to --he's strictly an action-movie fan.

Can't wait to catch up with you and Lauren in June!

Staci said...

That house is gorgeous!!!!!!!!! Now I want to stay there!! Have fun with the R&R and meeting the authors. I loved Game of Thrones, he's a great writer!!

Joanne said...

Hi, Staci - I haven't seen a review yet that didn't rave about A Game of Thrones, so I'm excited to get to it.

Nottoway IS amazing -- come on down! :)

Anonymous said...

Wow, wow, WOW! These are just beautiful. Seriously! I'm actually just starting Discovery of Witches, right now, and I'm enjoying it. Good stuff!

Joanne said...

Hi, iwriteinbooks -- Can't wait to see what you think about Witches....I'm enjoying it, too! Thanks for stopping by!

Svea Love said...

Joanne! These pictures a completely stunning!!! I must go there sometime.

Enjoy your books! I don't think I am ever not on book buying spree, hehe.

Have a great weekend and I see you on your next SS post :)

Joanne said...

Svea - Oh, yes, aren't we all guilty of those buying sprees?

Anjuli said...

I was swooning over all these pictures!!!!

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Joanne's to-read book montage

On a Highland Shore
A Light on the Veranda
The Queen's Vow: A Novel Of Isabella Of Castile
The Edwardians
Maisie Dobbs
Howards End
Lady's Maid
Instruments Of Darkness
When Maidens Mourn
Where Shadows Dance
What Remains of Heaven
Where Serpents Sleep
Why Mermaids Sing
When Gods Die
Before Ever After
The Sugar Queen
Garden Spells
After the Night

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