Monday, 31 December 2007
Having said that, I now offer a review of my own fiction reading this year.
I used to think I didn't read enough so I started recording each book as I finished it and was surprised and pleased to find that I read at least 24 books a year. I won't bore you with the full list but some of my favourite and regular authors are Anne Tyler, Helen Dunmore, Rose Tremain and Margaret Atwood. I keep the list in my diary and rate the books with a system of ticks. The voting this year had my top three as follows
1 We Need to Talk about Kevin by Lionel Shriver. A beautifully written, harrowing and haunting story that I read in January and is still with me
2 The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini
3 The Tenderness of Wolves by Stef Penney
Some books are so good I cannot part with them (usually paperbacks go to friends or charity shops), these three are still in the bookcase with some favourites from previous years that I may or may not read again but I need to own.
I'm already into my first 2008 book which is Mother, Missing by Joyce Carol Oates. She is an American author I have read and enjoyed several times and this book is no exception. I'm also delving in and out of The Gentle Art of Domesticity by my blogging/crafting heroine Jane Brocket, who never fails to inspire me to craft and tidy up.
We are all taking it easy today, reading, knitting and dozing in front of the stove, its heaven and good preparation for 2008, my retirement year.
Saturday, 29 December 2007
She managed to capture both ends at once, one in her paw one in her mouth. Her original family who used to live next door to us were home briefly from Kuwait and came round for dinner last night. Cleo was a bit nonchalant about seeing them again but they were delighted to see how well she is looking and confirmed that she is 17 years old. Still catching rabbits, mice and wool, what a good girl.
Mr FF did well with his shopping and found me some lovely Patons angora/wool mix beautifully packed in tissue paper in cardboard boxes, 9 balls of pale lemon and 10 of lavender.
Monday, 24 December 2007
Friday, 21 December 2007
Fortunately I drew Joanne, my faithful reader, as my recipient and since the clues she had given were green and size 5 feet, I got my needles in action and made her these
Just one more Christmas gift to knit, Mr FF is out this evening so I shall get down to some serious work. Meantime I'm doing my domestic duties and adding bit of festivity to the house. No need to do much as the scene outside is so beautiful, bright sunshine and everything covered in white frost, I can almost hear those sleighbells.
Sunday, 16 December 2007
We are not great ones for decking the halls, but we have put white lights outside on the Korean pine at the front of the house, the tree is well covered by blue/black cones again this year and looks really welcoming. I've also put the wreath up beside the front door so to the outside world at least we look festive. On the inside all you can hear is bah humbug!And now even after that brilliant Argentine tango the lovely Gethin is out of Strictly, I am devastated, I'm not voting any more.
Friday, 14 December 2007
Beauty is in the eye of the beholder - behold my new site.
Sunday, 9 December 2007
I love Strictly and I love those who love it too. I email people I work with, clients and suppliers, about the results, chat to my colleagues and even had a discussion in the hairdressers the other week. I fantasise about being one the the professional dancers, though I can't decide if I'd be Flavia or Lilia. As Falvia I'd be able to brush up my (lapsed intermediate level) Italian with the gorgeous Vincent and he'd lead and lift me through smouldering tangos. Admittedly I'd need to lose a bit of weight but obviously I would. If I were Lilia I'd be married to the adorable Darren and I'd have partnered my favourite ever Strictly competitor Darren Gough, and again got thrown around a bit during the fabulous Night to Remember routine (are you noticing a theme here?). The year Darren won we had been invited out to dinner on final nights and our friends Roger and Christine kindly arranged the meal to suit the programme timings even though they weren't fans. This was in the days when the result were announced later the same evening, we took puddings and coffee in front to the telly and all cheered when Darren won. I'm not so fond of waiting a day to know the results, but it does mean we see more of the wonderful professional dancers.
And who do I want to win this year? GETHIN. Alesha is the obvious favourite but I feel she had such an advantage coming from a musical background and some of those celebrity boys have made such progress. Kenny Logan admitted he couldn't even clap to the beat when he started and look at the improvement he made. I had to watch the lift from Dirty Dancing several times (OK I'll stop this now). Whoever wins it will have been a fabulous series as ever and made a retiring woman very happy. Come January I shall be bereft.
Friday, 7 December 2007
Sunday, 2 December 2007
Dolly isn't really my aunt, she is a friend of the family who has had this honourary title for two generations. She was when her eyesight was better a great crafter, knitting. crochet and embroidery, and has been an inspiration to me. There are several beautiful tapestry kneelers in the Church that Dolly made for the Queen's silver jubilee, I used one at my niece's wedding this year. When I first tried to crochet about 30 years ago I showed Dolly my efforts and she presented me with a full set of hooks in a case that she said she had been keeping for that moment. I am embarrassed to say that I never really progressed beyond the basics, though I did make a rather ugly blanket that I still have There is still time to improve and one day I really would like to learn more. I hope she likes these gloves, based on a pattern in Last-Minute Knitted Gifts (how appropriate) by Joelle Hoverson and I hope she has a wonderful Christmas which I know she will be spending with either family, genuine or self appointed.