Monday, June 29, 2015

this makes me want to reread the book

Eleanor Farjeon's fairytales

Eleanor Farjeon wrote a song most know: Morning has broken. This song was the song of this morning with cool air, bright sunshine and  chattering birds.

 I have collected Eleanor's books for decades. The Little Bookroom is my favorite. My family was swept up into 
the stories one winter , even my husband wanted to take
it to work to read to collegues. Of course, he didn't 
but maybe he told someone about "The Lady's Room" 
which was his favorite. We seemed to jump into these
fairytales and were smitten with the lands the stories
took us to. We read them before bed and first thing in the morning.

 Do find a copy if you haven't read this book , no matter your age. Excellent book to read as a family.

Nellie as her family called her was homeschooled.
 In her childhood, she was "home schooled" and she loved books, perhaps her frequent headaches and colds were contributed to by the dust of the "little bookroom" - an attic space piled with books. 

 While cleaning out some bookcases, I found

this one tucked away on the bottom. ( not my photo)

Kaleidoscope by Eleanor Farjeon HB 1963 Magic Fantasy Poetry

Sunday, June 28, 2015

the summer stack

Finished this book on my trip to a wedding in Virginia:

Rereading this book pretty quickly:

Started Middlemarch: 

What do I think of Middlemarch? asked the great American poet Emily Dickinson

and  wrote, "I am bringing you a little granite book for you to lean upon."

Saturday, June 27, 2015


“Above all, trust in the slow work of God. We are quite naturally impatient in everything to reach the end without delay. We would like to skip the intermediate stages. We are impatient of being on the way to something unknown, something new. And yet, it is the law of all progress that it is made by passing through some stages of instability – and that it may take a very long time. Above all, trust in the slow work of God, our loving vine-dresser.”

 Pierre Teilhard de Chardin.

Good blog here about her tomatoes and 
the slow work of pinching off the vines...
 just saw Nicolle at a wedding
and she talked about writing this blog. 
Excellent science
and scheduling info, btw. 

Thursday, June 25, 2015

have to admit

We are watching The Gilmore Girls.
One more episode in the second season and the
characters and humor from Connecticut is
Spot on.
Each is a  stereotypes of all who
live in the Northeast. 

I am reading but chilling out with Lorelai,
Rory and her boyfriends, and Luke.
Then there is Sookie who is played
by Melissa McCarthy. They all make me laugh
and love life. Paris and Lane pop in
as Rory's friends, well, is Paris her friend
or competitor to make it to Harvard?
Do NOT tell me the end. 

 Will Luke and Lorelai get together? I want to live in
Stars Hollow south of Hartford. My brother
does now live in a tiny town after working
his career in Hartford. It is a northern Mitford.

book stack

I finished Far From the Madding Crowd yesterday. 
Now I want to see the movie again. 

Starting Middlemarch and trying to finish The White Horse

by Elizabeth Goudge and Les Miserable

I actually have a tall stack to get through but these are next on 

the list. Working on a book list for my students for Ancient History. 
Any favorites? 

Why Marriage Is the Start of an 'Epic,' According to George Eliot

( good reading of favorite passages in The Atlantic magazine)

Wednesday, June 24, 2015

there and back again

Conference Painting: 

Chalk Cliffs on Rügen by  

1817, Germany

This is the island of Rugen; it is the largest island of Germany in the Baltic Sea.
and  famous for its chalk cliffs.

 Caspar David Friedrich married Christiane Caroline Bommer, who was about 20 years his junior. On their honeymoon in July and August 1818, they visited relatives in Neubrandenburg and Greifswald. From there, the couple undertook an excursion to the island of Rügen with Friedrich's brother Christian. The painting appears as a celebration of the couple's union.

Rügen is located in Germany

Conference Poem  

    Twinkle, twinkle, little star,
     How I wonder what you are!
     Up above the world so high,
     Like a diamond in the sky.

     When the blazing sun is gone,
     When he nothing shines upon,
     Then you show your little light,
     Twinkle, twinkle, all the night.

     Then the traveller in the dark
     Thanks you for your tiny sparks;
     He could not see which way to go,
     If you did not twinkle so.

     In the dark blue sky you keep,
     And often through my curtains peep,
     For you never shut your eye
     'Till the sun is in the sky.

     As your bright and tiny spark
     Lights the traveller in the dark,
     Though I know not what you are,
     Twinkle, twinkle little star. 

by Jane Taylor, 1806
First published as " The Star" 

Tuesday, June 16, 2015


I am getting all things packed today to head to the 
Charlotte Mason Institute Conference in Kentucky.
I have been to the location before : a L'Abri Conference.
This time it is my daughter and I going. She is rooming 
with a dear friend who is getting married next Friday. 
My roommate and co-speaker for a workshop has a son
whose lung collapsed in Marine Boot Camp. She is in
Charleston and he is having surgery this afternoon. 

I will have the room to myself. 

I will share next week some nuggets and book titles. 
I come away with hope for the next generation from 
all the teachers, speakers,  moms, dads, and 
even students who attend. 

"To travel deliberately through one's ages, is to get the heart out of a liberal education."
R.L. Stevenson (Dedication of the Vol. Virginibus Puerisque)

Friday, June 12, 2015


and finding old letters and some misplaced
photos and years upon years with my kids
learning at home and in classes. Now the last
one is organizing her room, passing on clothes,
and she has inspired me to do the same. 

Here is a some good summer drinks to make:
Herbal Lemonade Station // HonestlyYUM
(images by HonestlyYUM)

Here is an inspiration from Jessica Chorley in London and her
gorgeous tidbits of fabric. 

Here is a midori journal and Emma is decorating the pages 
of one she got as a gift : handmade by a friend. Emma made 
a calendar inside the first journal with the 3 journals. 

Thursday, June 11, 2015

to be here

Women Reading by Eduoard Vuillard

Wednesday, June 10, 2015

a fence

I saw this on The Murmuring Cottage  and it really isn't a fence rather it
is posts. What is the rambling flower? A rather good idea for a fence.

He came up to the boundary fence, and stood to regain breath. It seemed as if the spot was unoccupied by a living soul. ( He being Gabriel Oak  of Far From the Madding Crowd)

Tuesday, June 9, 2015

Far From the Madding Crowd

Everyman edition that went back to the library today. I got up to Chapter 27 Hiving the Bees.
I adored the paper and the ribbon. I love ribbons in books. 

Hardy took the title from Thomas Gray's poem Elegy Written in a Country Churchyard (1751).
Far From the madding crowd's ignoble strife
Their sober wishes never learn'd to stray;
Along the cool sequester'd vale of life
They kept the noiseless tenor of their way.
"Madding" means "frenzied" here.

here is my copy that I will finish reading this wonderful story: 

Look here at the quote on beauty that I on a mug

Saturday, June 6, 2015

shaping and reshaping

“And I knew that the Spirit that had gone forth to shape the world and make it live was still alive in it. I just had no doubt. I could see that I lived in the created world, and it was still being created. I would be part of it forever. There was no escape. The Spirit that made it was in it, shaping it and reshaping it, sometimes lying at rest, sometimes standing up and shaking itself, like a muddy horse, and letting the pieces fly.” 

― Wendell BerryJayber Crow

from this tumblr

Novel Interiors

Novel Interiors: Living in Enchanted Rooms Inspired by Literature
by Lisa Borgnes Giramonti

The book opens with this quote: 

" It was an aesthetic education to live within those walls."
Evelyn Waugh, Brideshead Revisited

I knew I would love this book.

Interwining literature with interior design,  the author
knew her books from early childhood to adult novels.
She opens with this question: " Who can forget the sleek 
glamour of Gatsby's gittering mansion at West Egg? 
( for sale right now) Or the snug charms of the Dashwood
family's dear little cottage in Sense and Sensibility?"
This is an ingenious idea to write about the descriptions
of favorite books with real interior photos. I was also inspired
to read a few classics that I haven't read yet. 

Here are a few quotes:

" The linen ... though coarse, was clean and smelt

beautifully of lavender." The Wind and the Willows, Kenneth Graham

"Nothing matched anything else. Everything was of an  exotic

brillance that took away the breath. 'Not the room of a lady?'
thought Miss Pettigrew." Miss Pettigrew Lives for a Day, Winfred Watson

It is a book for book lovers! 

It is a book I will remember for gift giving. 

 "I received this book from Blogging for Books for this review."

Friday, June 5, 2015

need a row of hearts

a row of bleeding hearts
nestles betwixt the boughs;
holds a pouch
of love
bursts forth
in silent 

( photo by my sister: Biltmore House Spring Garden)

Wednesday, June 3, 2015

the function of the sense of beauty

A good definition from Charlotte Mason: 

As for that aesthetic 'appetency' (to use Coleridge's word) upon which so many of the gentle pleasures of life depend, it is open to many disasters: it dies of inanition when beauty is not duly presented to it, beauty in words, in pictures and music, in tree and flower and sky. The function of the sense of beauty is to open a paradise of pleasure for us; but what if we grow up admiring the wrong things, or, what is morally worse, arrogant in the belief that it is only we and our kind who are able to appreciate and distinguish beauty? It is no small part of education to have seen much beauty, to recognize it when we see it, and to keep ourselves humble in its presence.
vol 6 pg 56


mist details by serni on Flickr.

Tuesday, June 2, 2015

hope, pg. 14 & 15

   I found a red feather today right outside 
                                     the back door.

                          Mr. Cardinal's feather---

"Hope is a thing with feathers" popped
into my mind. I felt the Holy Spirit's

Because the Holy Ghost over the bent
  World broods with warm breast and with ah! bright wings.

Lines of poetry from Emily Dickinson and God's Grandeur 
by Gerald Manley Hopkins

not all who wonder are lost

Interesting lettering in each.
Not sure which one is my favorite: