Sunday, May 26, 2013

Something New

There are a few new books in the shop.

I hope you see something you like.


Friday, May 24, 2013

Kingston Lacey

Trees near Kingston Lacey, Dorset
Source: Photograph © Mark Durk, 2008,
"It is not so much for its beauty that the forest makes a claim upon men's hearts, as for that subtle something, that quality of air that emanation from old trees, that so wonderfully changes and renews a weary spirit."
~Robert Louis Stevenson

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

The Last Days of Anne Boleyn

BBC2 is showing a documentary called, "The Last Days of Anne Boleyn." While the US will have to wait for this to air on television or to buy the DVD, the lucky Brits can watch it now.

The Tudors are my favorite favorite history to read, watch, and see, so this is one I'll be looking forward to buying. You can never have too much of the Tudors.

Click to see clips and the BBC2 website on the documentary.

Sunday, May 19, 2013

Little Adventures - Backyard and Otherwise

The backyard lilacs have already begun fading. Their lifespan is so short yet so perfect with their lush perfume and bright lavender flowers. Before they faded, I was able to get some pictures of their simple and timeless beauty.

This time next year, I will watch for them before they go quietly into the sunset of another spring.

Happily, other things in the yard are not as short lived. But you still have to step outdoors or you'll miss them.  For instance, lately we have received an early morning visit from a kitty called Dewey (after the Dewey Decimal System). One of his humans is a librarian which explains the name. He is still a little bit shy and not ready to come down from his fence perch when we are outside, but I am hoping he will eventually.

The winds also carry on as if by cue, and today pigeons were seen flying overhead in the wild skies, which is a first time occurrence around here, at least for me. 

As much as I love the backyard though, I am itching to venture out a little when June gets here. So hopefully I'll have a little adventure to share about sometime soon. Keep in mind that I said little adventure, won't be the Redwood Forest or anything like that, unfortunately. But it's time to seek out some different skies for a little while. Who knows what it will be, even I don't right now. I will find something perfect and share when I can.

Monday, May 13, 2013

A Fortnight of Spring Winds

Give me spring and give me wind.
A few days ago was a perfect spring wind, almost warm in the sunshine.

This spring wind brought out two hawks from the tall trees just like they always do, hawks that like to play in the windy currents, ... and one calls to the other to say they have found the prime spot to ride the wind, the other answers by calling and joining his partner, ...all just over my head and so close that I can see their feathered patterns and hear each call they make, ...ten shrill calls to each other, five each back and forth sounding exactly the same as the one before, and lovely to my listening ears. I wish I could join both of them in their thrilling dives and soaring dances that they leave their nests for each time the wind blows hard.

Spring winds bring me out of the house too, there is no way to resist them. The tall trees seem to join hands in dancing to the windy display... those cut out paper people who hold paper hands..., 
...still trees, but in a different form of paper trees, 
...holding hands in a dance for the sheer joy.

My breath is caught up with the gusts that are impossible to walk away from, and I find myself glued to the backyard watching the sky like a movie, eyes drawn to each new scene that plays before me. This spring wind display happens off and on for a good fortnight falling somewhere in the days of May and June, and there is nothing like it.

The currents await me. Joy.

Sunday, May 12, 2013

What Would Jane Do?

Pride and Prejudice is one of my favorite books and the family of Elizabeth Bennet is so true to life. Jane Austen knew people and how they work and she knew how to spin a yarn very well, indeed.

Today I was thinking of the Bennet sisters -- Jane, Elizabeth, Mary, Lydia, and Kitty -- and how different they are. Jane and Elizabeth use their time wisely and learn well, they make themselves "handsome women" in the sense of what they accomplish and become. Mary strives to be like her elder sisters, well accomplished and informed, but she misses the mark because she has no room to be sensible and thoughtful in the moment. Lydia is hopeless and has not become who she could be, while Kitty aimlessly follows Lydia around and copies her behavior.

I wonder which sister would be my model were I to look at this carefully and objectively. I have bits of them all if I am to be honest, and I am not sure how I feel about it. I know I can do better with my time, of course we all can. It is far too easy to sit at the computer and stay idle when there are a million other things you could be doing, things that are far more valuable.

Where have all of the accomplished arts gone to in this fast paced world that finds us rarely having time like the ladies of old did, ...devouring a book for hours, baking something from scratch, needlepoint, drawing, art, taking walks and thinking long and thoughtfully with your head, about life and its meaning.

It can be a crazy time to live in, and it's not going to be simple or accomplished unless we make it so for us, ...we live in a time that doesn't demand for us to bake a cake from scratch or draw sketches of family to remember them. We don't have to whip up tea and scones for company dropping by for a chat, or write long letters to relatives who are far away. There are not dresses to be made by hand or needlework sitting at the wayside begging to be worked on. But we can use our time to become really really great at something and maybe even two or three somethings, rather than being idle like Lydia and Kitty.

Which sister am I destined to become, whether Kitty, Lydia, Mary, Elizabeth, or Jane is entirely up to me - that is the beauty of it.
What would Jane do? Indeed, we already know the answer to that question.

Monday, May 6, 2013

May 6, 1862

A beautiful resting spot for Thoreau. 
Under the earth and trees he loved so dearly.

Grateful for the wisdom he left us in his mere 44 years.

Go confidently in the direction of your dreams.
Live the life you've imagined. 
As you simplify your life, 
the laws of the universe will be simpler.
Henry David Thoreau