“Be yourself; everyone else is already taken.” ....Oscar Wilde

Wednesday 15 February 2012

A Simple Woman's Daybook

FOR TODAY ~ Wednesday 15th February 2012

Outside my window...My OH is heading out of our squeaky gate with his bike. He's about to cycle approx 16k to his office. Thankfully they have shower and locker facilities there!
It is a very still morning with the sun just waking up and peeping over the skyline, which gives all the trees and rooftops a golden glow. There's not a single movement of the leaves or branches. Even the birds seem to know its to be a warm one today and are conserving their energy.
I am thinking...I need to get on with all I need to do early this morning before it may get too hot.

I am thankful...for sunlight. 

In the kitchen...Valentine biscuits that I made yesterday. The trouble is that it was a new recipe and I didn't know that they would make so many. There is probably about 34 left! I wonder how many might disappear today?
I am wearing...I'm not wanting to divulge such information....so yeah...I'm still in bed!

I am creating...possibly a new painted silk scarf today. I'm trying to do something different each day this week. Monday I created the travel blog to South Korea which took quite some time. Tuesday I baked. Today I'm thinking about the silk painting.....and so the week goes......

I am going...to a line drawing class in a few weeks time. I've bitten the bullet and enrolled. I was so excited when I signed up I think I was actually hyperventilating. It's always a good sign that I'm actually doing something that my inner self wants to do...and the negative nag has been pushed aside. They'll obviously be lots to post about that later.

I am wondering...how a possum can make such terrifying noises in the night...especially when they are right outside your bedroom window. This is one of the noises that the possum makes. Here's another sound that  they make, which is very weird don't you think? They look so cute but when you hear that sound late at night or when everything else is so still and quiet it sounds spooky. I know quite a few people hate don't like the possum's due to how destructive they can be, destroying plants and veggies in the garden. They also sometimes decide to take up residence in your roof space, which can be troublesome because they are protected and you can't just evict them...they have rights! Even if they're leaving their calling card on your newly painted white ceiling in the lounge! Thankfully they haven't found a way in here yet....but they are circling the building!

I am reading... 'Rules of Civility' by Amor Towles

 My daughter started to read this book on her new kindle (Santa's gift ; D ) whilst she was staying with us and she recommended it to me. I've only just started to read it but its got my attention already. 
Despite the fact that I've never been to New York City or in fact alive in 1937, makes interesting reading especially when the writer Amor Towles transports you back there so effortlessly .
A statement by one of the leading characters protagonist, Katey Kontent, knew " how to type eighty words a minute, five thousand an hour, and nine million a year and that if you can still lose yourself in the first chapter of a Dickens novel then everything is probably going to be fine". With those two lines, I had already identified with Ms Kontent, . If you are a male reader, please do not click away now as this is most definitely not chick-lit. In fact, there is plenty of drinking (Martinis and Champagne, primarily), there are cars and even a few guns here and there. Oh, and jazz.

In brief, the plot revolves around Katey and her friend Eve; they meet Theodore `Tinker' Grey, a wealthy young man while celebrating New Year's Eve in a dingy jazz club and, without giving away the story, the encounter will change their lives for ever. A love triangle is among the central elements of this story, but the triangle changes shape at one point and anyway, this is a novel with a story, rather than a plot. It's about love, of course, but also about ambition, social mobility, and that aspirational quality that is quintessential to the mythology of New York City and that will inevitably bring up comparisons with F.S. Fitzgerald's 'Great Gatsby'. Indeed, it would be hard not to see the similarities between Tinker and Jay Gatsby - young men who pretty much encapsulate the American Dream of the early 20th century at the start of the novel and who, by the end, confirm that the dream is just that: an illusion.

A lot of `new' writers are too often hailed as The Next Big Thing to then only disappoint; but on the contrary 'watch this space' as they say. I am amazed at how Amos managed to create such believable and above all, likeable, female characters. And the male `cast' are equally memorable, none of them too perfect, none of them falling into the trappings of prince charming characterisation that could have taken this book down the pastel cover route.

I would be really surprised if 'The Rules of Civility' didn't become a literary fiction best-seller, as it ticks all the relevant boxes; great characters, gripping storyline, jazz, Martinis and a social commentary; it's peppered with literary references and quotes.  And when a book makes you want to read more books, to paraphrase Katey Kontent, `everything is probably going to be fine'.
I think it'll be one for our book club : ) 

About the Author:
Born in 1964, Amor Towles was raised in a suburb of Boston, Massachusetts. He graduated from Yale College and received an M.A. in English from Stanford University. He is a principal at an investment firm in Manhattan, where he lives with his wife and two children.
Mr. Towles is an ardent fan of early 20th century painting, 1950’s jazz, 1970’s cop shows, rock & roll on vinyl, obsolete accessories, manifestoes, breakfast pastries, pasta, liquor, snow-days, Tuscany, Provence, Disneyland, Hollywood, the cast of Casablanca, 007, Captain Kirk, Bob Dylan (early, mid, and late phases), the wee hours, card games, caf├ęs, and the cookies made by both of his grandmothers.
His only other published work is a short story cycle called “The Temptations of Pleasure” published in 1989 in Paris Review 112.

I am hoping...that we get to see a lot more of Australia before we possibly move on...there are no plans for leaving yet, but I'd hate to leave here and not have ticked all the places that we'd like to see.

I am looking forward to...a concert next week. My daughter organised the tickets for my birthday ~ which was a huge surprise. I'm really looking forward to going.

Around the house...bits and pieces that need to find their way home. Clothes on hangers, shoes into cupboards, books onto shelves. Nothing major but just needing a little helping hand.

A favourite quote for today...Isn't it nice to think that tomorrow is a new day with no mistakes in it yet?—Lucy Maud Montgomery
One of my favorite things...this cute fluffy bundle curled up beside me breathing peacefully without a care in the world. No, my OH left the house already remember...its Muffin of course. 
I know she's featured here before but she's my shadow and gives so much love that I want to appreciate her whilst she's here. I can't contemplate not having here with me.

A few plans for the rest of the week: busy, busy as always. I like to get the most out of each and every day.

A peek into my day... 
Something that caught my eye on this mornings walk...
Those Scots get everywhere (:O)...I never thought I'd see a wild thistle growing in the bush! Never say never eh?

I'm currently putting together a post which will invite you to join Muffin and I on one of our walks....I do hope you'll be able to join us. In the meantime.....

And that's it for this week, I hope you enjoyed your visit. Don't forget to pop over to the The simple womans daybook and check out the other day book entries
Have fun : D


  1. OH my- Ioved this post! Just a little peek into your life and day. I just can't get used to the reality that right now is summer for you!! I have lots of readers from Australia- it throws me for a loop every time they talk about summer!

    You have so many areas of interest-- you must lead a very busy life--( don't we all!!)
    I've enjoyed this visit so much--- love the thistle photo!

    Thanks so so much for stopping by to see me earlier- I love hearing from you!

  2. Don't you just love blogging Vicki, where one minute you can be reading in one climate and the next a completely different one?

    I'm seeing so much snow and ice at the moment and people desperately waiting for their spring thaw, but then it fills me with sadness because if they have their spring, that means I'm heading into autumn and I'm not sure I'm ready just yet!

    As predicted it’s been warm here today ~ 33°C in fact and tomorrow is looking to be the same. Ahh...I must admit I like the warm.
    Glad you like the thistle...it took me by surprise but then there's always surprises on my morning walk.

    Maybe you will be able to join me again another day ~ I hope so :D

  3. I I meant to tell you that I'm reading Rules of Civility and loving every page--

  4. I'm loving it too. Isn't it beautifully written?
    Have a good day xo

  5. I'm enjoying your warm weather through your blog too. This time of year summer seems so far away. That possum makes an awful sound. I'm glad we don't have them.

    1. I'm trying not to notice but I think autumn is sneaking up :(
      I've just noticed a few leaves on my Acer have turned overnight and yesterday walking, I spotted a few leaves drifting down to earth. Sigh...but I just don't feel ready yet!

      Having lived in countries where the climate varied very little from one season to another, I know once I accept the changes I'll love it....I always do.

      It'll be your turn to send me summer then :D

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