This week has been another cold one. Cloudy, windy, a few rain showers. I’m trying not to complain because the weather isn’t anything worth complaining about. AND – I’d be really grateful for a day full of sunshine. Just putting it out there to the universe. But despite the gray and chill, we’ve got some beautiful tulips blooming. How about a cup of coffee and a chat with me this morning?
This clump of tulips is looking gorgeous. Some of the flowers have opened this week, but it’s been hard to catch them while the sun is shining. This week we managed to put peas, carrots, and radishes into the ground. We fertilized all of our fruit trees, roses, and the strawberry patch. I’m carefully checking the asparagus bed every day, admiring the lilacs that are making their way, and am joyous over the fact that the peony we planted last year seems to be coming back. Fingers crossed that we get at least one bloom from it.
Matthew has started some seeds in the basement. We’re a little late this year, but it’s something. I can’t remember everything he started, but I know that tomatoes are on the list and I’m very happy about that.
You’d think these two had been living together forever and not just 4 months. And I can’t believe it’s been 4 months since Agnes came into our house and disappeared into our basement for a week! She’s still mostly nocturnal – the sounds we hear at night are quite amusing – but I get lots of good Agnes cuddles which makes me happy. And August has been a much kinder cat since her arrival. I think he’s taking his hunting instincts out on her and not on me anymore, which I’m very thankful for. (Sorry Agnes!)
Rosamunde Pilcher update!
I was excited to read that a few of you are interested in reading some Pilcher this fall. Based on your comments, I’ve tweaked my plan a tiny bit.
- August – The Shell Seekers.
- September – September (ha!). Tina described this as a sequel to The Shell Seekers and Mary mentioned that she was interested in reading this then. I’m not sure if I’ll be up for another Pilcher so quickly, but I’ll see how I feel in September.
- December – Winter Solstice. I’d originally planned on reading this in November, but decided to shift it to December after adding September into the mix.
So if you’re looking for some cozy reading as the season begins to shift, I’d love it if you helped me along with these books. No pressure, no deadlines, drop in and out depending on what works for you. It’s taken me a while to appreciate how much better reading is with friends. The encouragement that I get from all of you is amazing and I know my reading life wouldn’t be as dynamic or as varied without you all. So thank you!
And in other reading news, I’ve hit a good stride with Jonathan Strange & Mr. Norrell. I was really struggling to find my feet earlier this week, but once I hit the 100-page mark I found that I was settling in with the language and was quite interested in what was happening. Plus, thanks to a Fiction Matters buddy read, I now know that she mentions Piranesi later in the book and there are some interesting tie-ins. And apparently the ending is amazing? I cannot wait. My edition is one of the smaller mass paperback editions and is over 1000 pages. But I know I can do it!
I also started The Last Report on the Miracles at Little No Horse on Wednesday afternoon. I’m just about 60 pages in and this might be my favorite Louise Erdrich ever. I’m trying to figure out how to split my reading time between JS&MN and this one in a way that feels right. Because when I’m reading one, I only want to read that one until it’s finished! And vice versa. I’ll probably end up focusing on one soon… we’ll see which ones wins out!
In honor of Poem in Your Pocket Day and National Poetry Month, I’m going to end with this poem from Mary Oliver. I’ve come across it in several of my poetry collections and have it on an index card taped up next to my desk. I think it’s my favorite by her. I hope it strikes you in some way.
It doesn’t have to be
the blue iris, it could be
weeds in a vacant lot, or a few
small stones; just
pay attention, then patch
a few words together and don’t try
to make them elaborate, this isn’t
a contest but the doorway
into thanks, and a silence in which
another voice may speak.
– Mary Oliver