Tuesday, 31 May 2011

Down the garden path

My short walk through the garden to feed my hens is always a pleasure but at this time of year everything is just 'bursting out all over' ! Every day roses are coming into bloom and everything is shooting. As Manley Hopkins says in his poem Spring-

" when weeds, in wheels shoot long and lovely and lush"

 Some tidy people seem to feel an urge to chop back and tie up when seeing my lovely chaos but I ususally resist their logic.
Most days friends from our terrace lure each other into our gardens to see or smell a new flower that is ' just at its best'... 

Thursday, 26 May 2011

What book should I take to read for a trip to Paris?

In just over three weeks my daughter and I are treating ourselves to a little jaunt to Paris! My son is off on a school trip, so for a few days we plan to visit flea markets and glamorous shops, survive in a TINY studio flat and eat out every night, see the beautiful stained glass at Sainte Chapelle and sit on the steps at Montmatre again. And that's not including all the art galleries we plan to visit!

  A picture from the lovely book -PARIS by Sidney Dark, Illustrated by Henry Rushworth. 1926
 I love to take some books that suit the place I'm visiting. I often travel with Laurie Lee's " As I set out one Midsummer morning" because it has such a perfect sense of the tastes and smells of travelling. I would love to read something set in Paris but all I can think of at the moment is Orwell's " Down and out in London and Paris" which is not in the spirit of this trip! I'm not really looking for a guide book, although quirky ones are always interesting, more a novel which captures something of the spirit of the city....
Any suggestions?

Tuesday, 24 May 2011

Greensleeves or- ringlets, petticoats and roses

Pleased be impressed by my ringlets!
You will be relieved, seeing that I have illustrated today's piece, that I was Costume Modelling, not Life Modelling.
The dress is long and sort of 18th century-ish and rustles beautifully due to my wedding petticoat. I wore a wreath of ivy and roses on my head and carried a basket full of rather hastily picked flowers ( the elderflowers were a mistake, scent wise...). I described myself as 'an old fashioned flower seller' . The class was delayed as all the curtains had to be closed  and the door left open in the village hall, so a panicking swallow could escape but once he had swooped out we quickly settled down to the slightly bizarre routines of an art class. I courageously faced the distractions of incredibly tickly green fly and a speedily wilting posie and everybody was enthusiastic and ultimately content. It's an unusual way to earn one's living but such good fun dressing up. I now want to find a good curly white powdered wig...

Saturday, 21 May 2011

My First Artichoke

I feel such a pleb... I've just eaten my first artichoke ( the thistley kind). Hmmmm, maybe it's a bit like olives, it will grow on me, the boys were not that impressed either. The best bit was a dip I made using melted butter, mayonnaise and balsamic vinegar glaze, which at about 1 million calories a spoonful should be good...

Wednesday, 18 May 2011

Chronicles of Narnia C. S. Lewis

I can't believe it, I was just 'talking' to another blogger about Narnia books and my collection of four early editions. I'd bought them in a lot a month ago, looked quickly at them and decided  I couldn't resist keeping them.
 Well, I 've just had a closer look and this one, Prince Caspian, is a 1st Edition, first state!!!!
I don't really deserve to be a bookseller being so careless but I'm very, very happy...

Elderflower Cordial

On my way home from getting some prints framed for the book fair I was tempted by all the elderflowers in the hedgerows. I now have enough for my second batch of Elderflower Cordial.
p.s. Can anybody tell me how to turn this photograph around?

Putting off cataloguing books...

I was putting the flowers in my bedroom and I couldn't resist taking a close-up-
Right! NOW I must start work...

Spoils from the Garden

It looks like rain , so I've just been out to pick my morning posie and collect the eggs from my hens.

Tuesday, 17 May 2011

Not so 21st Century

oh Heck,
I've somehow managed to become my own follower. What a plonker I am, that takes stalking to new, egocentric levels...
This is much harder than starting a diet or finishing a relationship. I'm used to battling with words when cataloguing my books or writing my talks but being allowed to use your own words and find your own voice is quite daunting.
 One thing I should mention, I'm dyslexic and so my spelling and grammar is rather varied, the spell check catches most of it but some slip through, my apologies. It's ironic but I often notice other people's mistakes and have the gall to feel superior!
Today I plan to start sorting my books for a book fair on Saturday,  take failed-to-sell stuff from a car boot sale to the charity shops and at least make a start on learning my talk ' Nude but not Rude' which I'm giving for the first time this Thursday.
I wonder how much of this I will accomplish?