In addition to my Christmas Book Haul, I was lucky enough to receive a Alice in Wonderland tea set from my boyfriend. Isn’t it gorgeous? I love the little watch, cat and bird motifs. There are even little hearts and spades if you look closely.
Alice in Wonderland Tea Set
The only problem is, I think it might be a little too beautiful to use! I’m scared I will break it.
As much as I am looking forward to Christmas, once it’s over I miss the sunlight and the spring. I’m preparing for those dark winter months between Christmas and my garden sprouting for another year by preparing some book themed flowers in my house. I know that sounds a little crackers, but it’s all in the name. My flowers will have names which associate them with paper, books, stories… etc.
So far we have (sprouting) Amaryllis Novella and Narcissi Paperwhite… ta da!
Amaryllis and Narcissi growth
Do you know of any plants with similarly bookish names? I am planning on making my garden a nature reserve but can see potential for extending a similar theme to my borders. William Shakespeare roses for example. I’d be really grateful for any suggestions and am willing to include fruit and veg.
I loved the above post on Anni Cardi’s blog, which links you to a charity Doedemee selling posters of redesigned book covers to help raise money to fight illiteracy.
Guess where I’m shopping this month! I think I’ll probably get the Wuthering Heights design for myself, because it’s completely gorgeous AND one of my favourite books.
The posters for Alice’ Adventures in Wonderland, Anna Karenina, Wind in the Willows, The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie, To Kill a Mockingbird, Atonement and Northern Lights are also amazing. I might ask for some for my birthday/Christmas.
Sitting and reading for long periods can leave you a bit chilly in the winter, so since my last operation I’ve been making myself a crochet blanket using a pattern from a blog I found via craftgawker. It’s the first big crochet project I’ve made and, though it’s not perfect, it is cheerful and snuggly warm and perfect for cosying down in an arm-chair with a good book when it gets cold.
Winter is coming, as the Stark family are fond of saying, but I am prepared.
This post comes to you from my new house. Yes, I am a homeowner and am posting this from my new abode at the dining room table which I have positioned to look out over the now dark garden. I have my desk similarly positioned upstairs, but the lightbulb in the spare bedroom has already blown…
The move went reasonably well and the place is beginning to look a bit more like home. Boxes are mostly unpacked and my books have been hastily unloaded onto shelves throughout the house. I’d planned to have a little home library with sections for literature, history, dictionaries, food, craft, general fiction and poetry (oh, and football and computing with Jon’s books thrown into the mix) but the pressure to unpack boxes as well as shelf height constraints has delayed that for now. It will happen down the line though…
My posting may still be a bit limited over the next few weeks as I clear my projects in work ahead of my forthcoming surgery, clean and decorate the house and begin my Open University course (yes, I took the plunge and signed up to the Creative Writing course… not because I think I’m good but because I think if you are willing to criticize then you should put yourself out there too!) but there will be bits and pieces coming your way.
One really annoying thing about the move is that the book I was half way through has been mislaid and I can’t abandon it half way to start another. The hunt starts here!
I’ll probably be quiet for the next week at least as on Tuesday we get the keys to our new house. I’ve spent some of tonight going through the bookshelves in my flat and had filled bags with books to go to charity shops and books to go to family and friends, which has cleared some space. There are still plenty of books to pack to take to the house though, and I’m going home to my Dad’s this weekend, so will probably end up packing a lot of my old university books that I didn’t have space to keep with me before. I’m trying to be ruthless elsewhere- mostly with clothes- but at least minimalism isn’t as now as it was…
To get you into the house moving/home making mindset, I thought I’d share the exciting book related things that I am lusting over for my house (but probably can’t afford):
If you’re a fan of beautiful bookshelves which are functional as well as ornamental then you have to check out Bookshelf Porn. Some are less bookshelves, more libraries, but some will work (or could be scaled down) to fit the smallest spaces ie. my flat. It’s an amazing website and everyone should check them out for some serious style inspiration. All the images below are from their fantastic website.
I could do this if I didn't need my desk for writing
I got questioned at customs for having hand luggage like this on my way to America
I have versions of this going on in my flat, much to my boyfriend’s frustration. They’re less suitable for editorial than these.
And finally, my fantasy reading seat in my future house. Do I need to have some kind of reinforcement put into the ceiling to have a chair like this? I can assure you that I’m only very small…
There are a few foods in this world that I love more than the humble pancake- my preferred version being the crepe and not the Scotch or American styles. I used to spend far too much time cooking them as a teenager, to the point that my Dad asked me whether I was studying the art of pancake making as a form of zen.
In honour of pancake day, one of my favourite days of the year, I’ve been wracking my brain to think of a book which fully extolls the virtues of the humble pancake but I was stumped. Please let me know if you can think of one.
I did however think that the baumtorte in Mr Rosenblum’s List might be perfect for this kind of occasion, I think it is good to have happy rememberances of people, as well as sad ones.
You may remember that I had planned to cook this myself, but sadly I forgot to get the recipe before I passed the bookon to an eager recipient. Never fear! Natasha Solomon herself has come to my rescue with her blog and a recipe in The Times.
My pancake mountain
So until I write my own novel in which pancakes and all things nice are heavily featured, please feast your eyes on my contribution to unhealthy eating. I hope you are enjoying feasting on your own pancakes as well.
I rearranged our bedroom yesterday and today I hurt. I didn’t think things through so I had to move the bedroom bookshelf twice so that I could fit my desk where I wanted it. Having moved it into it’s second position, I no longer had anywhere to put my lamp (except on my boyfriend’s side of the bed) so I decided to get creative with the battery powered fairylights that I bought for Christmas tree.
Unfortunately I only remembered to buy enough batteries to power the one pack, but I think I’ll have a pretty nice light when I’m finished.
I was introduced to this little shop on the weekend, and I could have spent years in here. It’s an amazing treasure trove of wax seals, leather journals, quills and assorted oddities. If I could have bought the entire shop, I would have. They don’t really sell reading books, the only books on display were some very expensive folio editions (cheaper to become a devoted member of the Folio Society and purchase heavily for a time) but if I ever win the lottery I will be going back to stock up my desks. I can see me now writing in a leather-bound tome with gold engraving, writing in an elegant script with a peacock feather quill and rainbow coloured inks. The perfect place to act out your Romantic/Gothic/Medieval/Harry Potter fantasy.
I came away with some vintage look postcards showing animals on vintage maps. There were two of each so I will have one to frame and another to send to lucky recipients. I will have to go back soon though. I’m sure that come pay-day I can justify my new-found need for a magnifying glass, butterfly patterned sticky notes and a few pretty marbled notebooks. Definitely worth a visit if you’re in the Oxford area, their website is http://www.scriptum.co.uk/