Three Live Betas rolled out yesterday:
Windows Live Writer Beta 2 shows qute some progress. I like the new, "Live" look, including semi-transparent splash screen. Many new features include table editing, link glossary, better pasting, plug-in management (Insert Messenger Quote plugin appears to continue working with this beta).
Windows Live Messenger 8.5 Beta, on the other hand, seems to bring mostly UI enhancements (again). The good news is that future WLM Updates will be rolled out through Windows Update.
There's also Windows Live Mail Beta 2, which I haven't tried yet, but its UI looks in sync with the other two.