Featured Slider

It's Snowing!

Photo by Jonathan Knepper on Unsplash

Just to be clear, 99 percent of the excitement in that statement comes from Celia. She lives for snow in the winter. The rest of us are far more ambivalent or, to be honest, negative towards the snow. It doesn't look like much right now but there is a winter storm warning in effect so we shall see.

So, what shall I do on a snow day?

The first thing was to sleep late which is why I am writing this post at 11:00 on a Saturday morning. I slept until 9:00 which is practically unheard of. The cat woke me up then. He needs medicine that we give to him on canned food at night. Unfortunately, since cats can't tell time, he thinks any time he is hungry is time for canned food. Cats are annoying.

Then the morning called for multiple cups of tea. And more tea this afternoon. And possibly an after-dinner cup of tea. I feel like I might need to bake something to go with all that tea. Homemade bread dripping with honey and butter sounds good.

I've convinced my husband to start The Crown with me later today. I watched the first episode ages ago and then decided it would be nice to watch it with him. Unfortunately, we haven't gotten around to it and now the second season is out. A snow day is the perfect time to catch up a bit.

Celia wants a fire in the fireplace and a game of Scrabble. That is a girl after my own heart. We have been playing a lot of board games with Tristan but he is very into strategy games. I stink at strategy. I just can't envision the game multiple steps ahead and I invent backstories for the characters and then have trouble sacrificing them for the greater good. It is all a bit traumatic. But I am good with words and I am absolutely thrilled to have a child that enjoys Scrabble. We will make Tristan play too and will beat him soundly in return for all the times he has beaten us at his games. It will be glorious.

And books. Of course, there will be books. I am reading Nella Last in the 1950s. I read the previous two volumes of her diaries a few years ago and am finally getting around to this. I enjoy her voice. It comes through so clearly in her writing. It is amazing to think that she was not a published author until after her death when her diaries were published. She was a woman sitting in her home recording everyday life. Her descriptions are beautiful.

The hills seemed to drowse in veils of soft amethyst to deep sepia shadows. Swale fires nursing under the whin and dead bracken made long plumes of smoke that rose up into the still air like fantastic fir trees, higher than the hills in the background. Age-old grey walls were jewelled with emerald-topiary from little tufts of green moss, and orange-yellow lichen where the sun rays picked out the colour. Evergreens glistened as if every leaf had been washed and polished separately. Horses' coats shone like burnished metal, and the hill sheep's wool dried in the keen wind and made a little shimmering nimbus round them as they cropped the grass, or lay quietly resting. 

Don't you just want to take an afternoon walk through that countryside? Though, I must admit, it also is the perfect thing to read while curled up by the fire and the snow falls outside.

Now, my next cup of tea is calling me and the snow is starting to stick. What does your Saturday look like?

December Plans//Running Away

I want to run away.

I want to run away from stress and anxieties and problems I can't solve because, heaven knows, this year has been filled with all of those things.

I want to stop worrying about my kids and health issues and all the nonsense that wakes me up at 2:00 a.m. and doesn't let me get back to sleep.

I want my husband to relax and enjoy life for a little bit.

I want to forget that even if I run away I will have to come back and deal with it all again.

I want to pretend for just a little while that everything is under control and manageable, that the mountains are really molehills instead of the other way around.

I want to have a bit of time to put life in perspective, to look at things from a distance and see how, in the grand scheme of things, nothing is too earth-shakingly terrible and we will all survive.

I want to sit in coffee shops and wander through bookstores and ignore the passing of time.

I want to put down the burdens for just a little bit so I can pick them up again with renewed strength.

I want a chance to remember that many of the things that bring me stress also bring me joy.

I want to spend time with my husband.

I want my kids to have fun with their grandparents before my son grows up so much that a week at their house no longer fits into his schedule.

I want to go somewhere familiar and easy and stress-free. Now is not the time for new adventures and new experiences.

I want to go to London because sometimes escaping into another life and another country for just a little bit is the only way to gain the strength to continue dealing with the stress and the anxieties and the problems.

I want to remember that life is to be enjoyed. It is not just a list of chores and responsibilities to be checked off.

I want to end this year on a high as a counterbalance to the plethora of lows.

I want to run away to London. So that is what we are going to do.

Bits And Pieces Of My Life Lately

I'll be honest with you. This post is solely made up of photos and bits of my life that don't really fit into any other post. So, we will start with the many pictures I have taken lately on the various walks we have been on. Today I managed to go for a walk with my husband and leave my camera and my phone behind. I just walked. Imagine that. It was very peaceful. I am not sure I would want to do it all the time, I do like taking photos, but it was nice for a change.

I was in Boston twice last week which led to a trip to the Boston Public Library. Have I been to Boston if I haven't been in the library or a bookstore? Last week I managed both.

I went to the Brattle Book Shop again. I have a whole list of bookshops I want to visit but time constraints usually prevent me from ticking any more off my list. I am going to have to plan a full day of bookshop visits in Boston soon but for now, running into Brattle Book Shop when I can manage it will have to keep me happy.

I was particularly pleased with the Elizabeth Fair novel. I have read several reviews of her novels and they sounded like just the type of thing I would enjoy. I was correct. I finished it tonight and thoroughly enjoyed it. I would describe it as a cross between Angela Thirkell, D.E. Stevenson, and Elizabeth Cadell. It was light, charming, and lots of fun. Dean Street Press has reprinted a handful of her novels and I will definitely be reading more of them. 

I know, that last photo is a bit of a strange transition, isn't it? I wrote a post about my dad recently in which I mentioned that he met Big Bird from Sesame Street once. At the time, I couldn't find the photo that commemorated the occasion but when I was sorting some family photos today I stumbled across it. So, here you go. Big Bird in a newsroom, apparently interviewing the journalists. My dad is the man on the left facing the camera. 

Right now, my kids are playing a video game together. Actually, my son is teaching his sister how to play a game. There is a lot of bickering but a lot of laughing too so it all seems to be good. My husband is listening to the news on the radio. And, once I finish this post, I will probably be surrounded by books trying to decide what to read next. 

What is new in your life? And what are you reading?