Monday, October 31, 2011

loving today: Book 4

The fourth literary Loving Today inspired by this post.
* * *

"No doubt you were in a hurry to give me a reputation for eccentricity: according to you, I am a Lara, a Manfred, a Lord Ruthwen. Then, once the time for seeing me as eccentric has gone, the image is spoiled and you try to turn me into an ordinary man. You want me to be commonplace and vulgar. You even ask me for explanations. Come, come, Monsieur Beauchamp! You are joking!"

"And yet," Beauchamp replied haughtily, "there are some occasions when honesty commands us…"

"What commands the Count of Monte Cristo," the strange man interrupted, "is the Count of Monte Cristo. So, not a word of all this, I beg you. I do what I wish, Monsieur Beauchamp, and believe me, it is always very well done".

extract from The Count Of Monte Cristo, Ch 88, by Alexandre Dumas


Thursday, October 27, 2011

loving today: (500) Days of Summer


I caught
(500) Days of Summer on the telly last night, the 2009 sleeper hit starring Joseph Gordon-Levitt and Zooey Deschanel. They're both wonderfully adorable of course, and the film is brilliant -- cute and clever, and also heartbreaking and poignant -- so I decided to put together this little (500) Days-inspired Loving Today :)


Tuesday, October 25, 2011

on getaways and inevitables


How very blessed we are to have been able to have a little vacation over the last few days! It does confirm to me that everyone -- perhaps particularly those whose jobs keep them largely home or kid-bound -- does need a regular break, a real getaway, even if just for a day or two.

While I still did have to look after the kids -- playing maid and butler to their every need and whim lol -- it was truly refreshing for me to be in a different, fun environment, doing different, fun things.

During my mini-vacation, I happened to catch a Joyce Meyer broadcast entitled Moving beyond worry and anxiety. I mean, really, who wouldn't perk up at a title like that! Well, at one point in her message, Joyce spoke of the "inevitables" in life.

"There are some things in life that are just inevitable," she said, "some things that are just going to happen from time to time, and you might as well just say, 'well, it is what it is, and I'm just going to deal with it'".

Here are a few of them:

"You will do a lot of waiting in life... whatever it is that you're waiting for right now, when you get it, it won't be long and you'll be waiting for something else... and if you want to be happy, you will learn to wait well, with a smile on your face, trusting God's wisdom and integrity...

"Not everybody's going to like you. O well -- they missed a good opportunity to know somebody awesome. And God's the one who said you're awesome! So I just figure, if somebody don't like me, then that's between them and God. 10% of people won't like you... but let's think about the 90% that will.

"From time to time you will get disappointed. But the good news is, in God you can get re-appointed! If one thing don't work out, praise God, everyday's a new beginning -- you can let go of yesterday and start all over again... His mercy is new every morning!...

"Here's another piece of good news -- when you try to do what's right, you will get persecuted (Matt 5:10)... If you're going to have a strong walk with God, somebody that you care about is probably going to come against you... But we've got to care more about what God thinks, than what people think. And we have to care more about eternity, than right this minute...

"When you want to do something different from what other people are doing, sometimes the only thing they know to do, is judge you and criticise you. And then God asks you to forgive them and love them on top of it :)

"Yes, when we try to do what's right, we will at time be persecuted, but 'in due time, you will reap if you faint not' (Gal 6:9)...

"God does not always say 'yes' when you ask Him for something. But you can always be assured that if He does say 'no', then what you asked for was not going to be good for you.

"And my last 'inevitable' -- people are not perfect. They're all just a little bit weird, including me. God's will for us is peace".

Hope you've been having a super, peaceful week! And go on that trip you've been thinking about -- even if it is just a short walk away :)

Thursday, October 20, 2011

loving today: Book 3

The third literary Loving Today inspired by this post.
* * *

"Oh, bless my little black soul, Mister Vandemar, do you see what I see?" The voice was soft, close: they must have been nearer to her than she had imagined. "I spy, with my little eye, something that's going to be --"

"Dead in a minute, Mister Croup," said the flat voice, from above her.

"Our principal will be delighted."

And the girl pulled whatever she could find deep inside her soul, from all the pain, and the hurt and the fear. She was spent, burnt out, and utterly exhausted. She had nowhere to go, no power left, no time. "If it's the last door I open," she prayed, silently, to the Temple, to the Arch. "Somewhere... anywhere... safe..." and then she thought, wildly, "Somebody".

And as she began to pass out, she tried to open a door.

As the darkness took her, she heard Mr Croup's voice, as if from a long way away. It said, "Bugger and blast".

extract from Neverwhere, Ch 1, by Neil Gaiman


Wednesday, October 19, 2011

on wilkie collins, and a system of life


I've been re-reading The Legacy of Cain by Wilkie Collins, the author of the more famous classics The Woman in White and The Moonstone. I personally love Mr Collins; I love his dramatic, entertaining "sensation novel" style, his wit, his grandiloquence, his lavish, convoluted imagination.

The Legacy of Cain was published in 1888, and explores the concept of hereditary evil; it was the final novel completed by Collins. Re-reading it now, almost two decades after I had in university, I come across bits that make me pause and reflect, that make me nod, or smile to myself a little. This one I thought I'd share with you :)
* * *

A sigh escaped the poor lady. Experience told her that my father was going to hold forth.

"You don't know what a philosopher is!" he repeated. "Be so kind as to look at Me. I am a philosopher."

Mrs. Staveley bowed.

"And a philosopher, my charming friend, is a man who has discovered a system of life. Some systems assert themselves in volumes -- my system asserts itself in two words: Never think of anything until you have first asked yourself if there is an absolute necessity for doing it, at that particular moment.

"Thinking of things, when things needn't be thought of, is offering an opportunity to Worry; and Worry is the favorite agent of Death when the destroyer handles his work in a lingering way, and achieves premature results. Never look back, and never look forward, as long as you can possibly help it...

"The present time is the precious time. Live for the passing day: the passing day is all that we can be sure of. You suggested, just now, that I should ask my son if he was engaged to be married. How do we know what wear and tear of your nervous texture I succeeded in saving when I said: 'Wait till Philip mentions it without asking?' There is the personal application of my system" (Ch XLII, ital mine).

Monday, October 17, 2011

loving today: Book 2

The second literary Loving Today inspired by this post.
* * *

Lolita, light of my life, fire of my loins. My sin, my soul. Lo-lee-ta: the tip of the tongue taking a trip of three steps down the palate to tap, at three, on the teeth. Lo. Lee. Ta.

She was Lo, plain Lo, in the morning, standing four feet ten in one sock. She was Lola in slacks. She was Dolly at school. She was Dolores on the dotted line. But in my arms she was always Lolita.

extract from Lolita, Part 1, Ch 1, by Vladimir Nabokov


Saturday, October 15, 2011

on the power of words, and beauty for ashes

Seated, by Lord Frederick Leighton

Some time ago a dear friend of mine wrote to me about her struggle with depression. She had had an abusive past, and even now, as an independent adult, still has to deal with her abuser. For much of her life, since she was a young child, this parent had been harsh, tyrannical and unmerciful; he physically abused her for years, but, as she observed, the emotional abuse was what hurt and damaged her much more; sadly, that still happens in the present.

She told me that he would say the most cruel things he could think of, things that would hurt and demean; his inflated ego required that everyone around him be cringing and subservient. She had to be constantly careful of what she said, even of how she looked; it was a life of walking on eggshells. She did not fulfil the great plans he had had for her life -- despite all her striving -- and he told her she was a disappointment and a failure.

Growing up in such an atmosphere, having such things spoken over her life, almost guaranteed that my friend would struggle with depression, anxiety, low self-esteem, and a terrible sense of worthlessness. How true it is that "Death and life are in the power of the tongue, and they who indulge in it shall eat the fruit of it [for death or life]" (Prov 18:21).

Indeed, the book of James has some particularly powerful verses about the tongue:

"Even so the tongue is a little member, and it can boast of great things. See how much wood or how great a forest a tiny spark can set ablaze!

"And the tongue is a fire. [The tongue is a] world of wickedness set among our members, contaminating and depraving the whole body and setting on fire the wheel of birth (the cycle of man's nature), being itself ignited by hell (Gehenna).

For every kind of beast and bird, of reptile and sea animal, can be tamed and has been tamed by human genius (nature).

But the human tongue can be tamed by no man. It is a restless (undisciplined, irreconcilable) evil, full of deadly poison.

With it we bless the Lord and Father, and with it we curse men who were made in God's likeness!

Out of the same mouth come forth blessing and cursing. These things, my brethren, ought not to be so" (James 3:5-10). Let us be careful, always be careful, what we say, and especially what we say to our children!

Thankfully, God is a God who heals and provides: my friend was born again not too long ago, and it dramatically helped her to overcome her misery and begin to find peace. Walking closely with God, learning His way of doing things, and turning to Him as her refuge and strength so that she no longer felt so rejected by her earthly father, helped tremendously.

She told me she still has "attacks", but she is so much better now than she used to be. Learning to ignore her father, to shrug off the slights and insults, and accepting the fact that if he wanted to stay unhappy, it was his problem and not hers, helped a lot.

Then recently, another friend told me a similar story. And yet another cried about how she had a hard time with anger and forgiveness. I realised that there are so many hurting people around, products of selfish, heartless, ignorant upbringings, with stories that would make any decent parent cringe and strive to avoid repeating in the next generation.

I suddenly felt drawn to look for and read Beauty for Ashes: Receiving emotional healing, a book by Joyce Meyer which had just been sitting unread on the kids' shelf buried under a pile of B's books. I opened the book at random (no, not like those people who randomly open their Bible hoping for a word from God, but because I didn't feel like reading right from the beginning), and read the following (as it turned out, the chapter was titled "Forgiving your abuser"). I thought I would share it, for the sake of anyone who knows the pain and despair of abuse.

"For many people, forgiving the one who abused them is the most difficult part of emotional healing. It can even be the stumbling block that prevents healing...

"First, let me say that it is not possible to have good emotional health while harbouring bitterness, resentment, and unforgiveness. Harbouring unforgiveness is like drinking poison and hoping your enemy will die! Unforgiveness poisons anyone who holds it, causing him to become bitter. And it is impossible to be bitter and get better at the same time!

"If you are a victim of abuse, you have a choice to make. You can let each hurt or problem make you bitter or better. The decision is yours.

"... God does not bring hurts and wounds upon you, but once they are inflicted upon you, He is able to cause them to benefit you if you will trust Him to do so.

"God can make miracles out of mistakes!

"... One of the main truths the Lord spoke to me while I was dealing with the forgiveness issue was this: Hurting people hurt people!

"The majority of abusers were themselves abused in one way or another. Often those who were raised in dysfunctional homes create a dysfunctional atmosphere in their own homes.

"... Choose to do what you can do, and God will help you do what you cannot do. Do your best, trust God, and He will do the rest.

"... You sow good seed by obediently following His plan, which is:

- Receive God's forgiveness (and love yourself).
- Choose to forgive and release those who hurt you.
- Pray for your enemies.
- Bless those who have hurt you.
- Believe that God is healing your emotions.
- Wait.
(Beauty for Ashes by Joyce Meyer, p.135-147).

"[God] Himself has said, I will not in any way fail you nor give you up nor leave you without support. [I will] not, [I will] not, [I will] not in any degree leave you helpless nor forsake nor let [you] down (relax My hold on you)! [Assuredly not!]

"So we take comfort and are encouraged and confidently and boldly say, The Lord is my Helper; I will not be seized with alarm [I will not fear or dread or be terrified]. What can man do to me?" (Heb 13:5-6).

Thursday, October 13, 2011

loving today: saddle bags

dt mont3

I happened to see an ad for a gorgeous Dooney & Bourke saddle bag, which prompted me to have a look at their website. They have some mighty purty things there; the bags above range between 300 to 350 dollars.

Then I decided to go find out what exactly a saddle bag is; I mean in the "fashion-y" sense, 'cause these ones sure don't look like the type you'd hang off a horse or stick under your bicycle seat. I couldn't really find a definitive answer, and finally concluded that a saddle bag is one that tends to have a buckle closure, has at least some leather somewhere, and looks sort of "saddle-y" in general.

Naturally, I was pretty sure some talented craftsters would have tried their hand at saddle bags, and I wasn't wrong! As with most handmade things, you can be sure artisanal bags won't have that super-perfect-shiny-factory look, and that's part of their charm. Here are just a few functional beauties -- enjoy!


Monday, October 10, 2011

loving today: Book 1

Remember that post I did on "what to read"? And remember how I wondered if I could do a Loving Today for each of those books? Well, I decided to try!

I'm choosing things that somehow remind me of each book; subjective associations, as it were, rather than literal translations. Hopefully I manage to capture at least a sense of the book, indefinite though it may be, and inspire you to go read it :)
* * *

Arabella, with her hands folded in front of her, looked at them all with a calm, indifferent expression upon her face. She did not trouble to answer any of their kind inquiries. She seemed neither surprized nor embarrassed to find them there.

"Where in the world have you been?" demanded Strange.

"Walking," she said. Her voice was just as it had always been.

"Walking! Arabella, are you quite mad? In three feet of snow? Where?"

"In the dark woods," she said, "among my soft-sleeping brothers and sisters. Across the high moors among the sweet-scented ghosts of my brothers and sisters long dead. Under the grey sky through the dreams and murmurs of my brothers and sisters yet to come".

extract from Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell, by Susanna Clarke


never hurts to ask


Mass email from B to the family:

HI!!!!! Now I need Grandma, Daddy and Mommy to help me with this:

1) Do not touch my kidney beans
2) Give me old magazines, newspapers, catalogues etc.

Now I need Daddy, Mommy and Grandma to help me with this:

1) Give me tips for my project
2) Tell me what materials to use

Last but not least I need Gramps, Daddy and Mommy to help with this:

1) Instruct me to do things right and get things right
2) Tell me how to do things the correct way if I do something wrong

Thank You Everybody For Your Help

Saturday, October 8, 2011

on trust, and being sanguine


Some years ago, I saw a distinguished skin specialist about a cut I had on my leg. This man is internationally renowned in his field, and accustomed to dealing with issues decisively and with authority; before I quite knew it, he was injecting the wounded area to prevent infection and help it heal well.

In the immediate however, the area swelled and turned an alarming, widening shade of dark purple -- this was right on the front of my thigh -- and appeared far worse than it did before I saw him. I didn't realise this till I got home and took off the plaster; when I saw how awful the area looked, well, I felt every word you can think of that's synonymous with panic. Agitation, fear, dismay, sheer terror -- you name it, I felt it. Never mind that the man is "internationally renowned in his field" -- my negativity immediately sent me into a spiral of fear and doubt.

I started thinking, "O gosh, that looks so bad! What if it stays like that forever? I'll have to wear long pants for the rest of my life! Why did I let him do that??" And I called the specialist up in a suppressed state of hysteria, and asked him why it was the way it was.

Essentially, I was saying, "Was that really necessary?? Are you sure you know what you're doing??"

And busy man though he is, he reassured me that he did indeed know what he was doing, and that, in time, the horrible purplish-black would fade and the wound would heal well.

I tremulously asked, "Are you sure it will heal?" And he replied, "Of course it will. Everything heals". And then he said something else which I've never forgotten. He said to me: "You need to learn to be more sanguine".

Now I don't know about you, but it's not everyday someone uses the word "sanguine" when they're talking to me. I don't think he was necessarily referring to the ancient theory of humours, but rather the basic modern definition: cheerfully confident; optimistic.

In the weeks that followed I thought a lot about what he'd said, what it meant, and I felt in my spirit that God was using the situation to show me something. If I wanted to stop spiralling downward every so often -- stop being on some sort of unpredictable, emotional roller-coaster -- and truly enjoy the peaceful life Jesus had given me as my inheritance, I had to stop being so anxious and negative.

Indeed, I had to learn to stop being so anxious and negative. For it had become a habit with me, and I needed to actively, consciously change my perspective and my thinking. As a child of God, I had to change my mindset, be "transformed (changed) by the [entire] renewal of [my] mind [by its new ideals and its new attitude]" (Rom 12:2) -- I had to learn to truly trust God and stop asking Him, "Are you sure you know what you're doing??"

So I prayed about it. A lot. And God faithfully saw me through. At first, the wound hurt, and looked terrible. The more I dwelt on it, the worse it seemed, the more magnified. Sometimes people would come along and say unhelpful things like, "Gosh, that sure looks bad". The whole thing just seemed to last forever. But, it did pass. God gave me the grace to press on, to change my thinking, to trust and hope in Him -- to stop focusing on it, and instead focus on all my blessings, and Him.

"... and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty (emancipation from bondage, freedom)," it says in 2 Corinthians.

"And all of us, as with unveiled face, [because we] continued to behold [in the Word of God] as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are constantly being transfigured into His very own image in ever increasing splendor and from one degree of glory to another; [for this comes] from the Lord [Who is] the Spirit".

It is a lovely thing to be transformed by God "from one degree of glory to another", even though each degree might seem to feel very small and slow as we're going through it. The fact is, we will go through it, and come out on the other side. This evening, that exhortation to sanguinity came to my mind again when my husband gave an exaggerated groan as he straightened up from getting something on the bottom shelf of the fridge (he rarely makes any complaint about his ailments).

I laughed, and jokingly said, "Thanks for vocalising what I'm mentally thinking", referring partly to the way we would habitually voice what the other was thinking, and partly to the bit of backache I'd been dealing with.

I said, "You don't dwell on your backache do you? You don't let it get you down". And, as expected, he laughed and shook his head. "No, of course not," he replied, "I don't waste my time like that". And he added, "Remember Steve Jobs' speech?"

I knew what he was referring to. Steve Jobs' 2005 Stanford commencement address. I could guess some of the things my husband was thinking of. One part of Jobs' speech that spoke to me was when he referred to a publication called The Whole Earth Catalog:

"...when [the publication] had run its course," Jobs said, "they put out a final issue... On the back cover of their final issue was a photograph of an early morning country road, the kind you might find yourself hitchhiking on if you were so adventurous. Beneath it were the words: "Stay Hungry. Stay Foolish." It was their farewell message as they signed off. Stay Hungry. Stay Foolish. And I have always wished that for myself. And now, as you graduate to begin anew, I wish that for you. Stay Hungry. Stay Foolish".

And saying my prayers later, I thanked God for pairing me up with a man who, though not precisely sanguine, is a wonderful example to me of good humour, forbearance, positive thinking, and calm pragmatism. A man who does not indulge in self-pity or worry, who does not waste his days being anxious or fretful. A man who has no trouble at all falling asleep.

I asked the Lord to help me, to keep giving me the grace to be sanguine, or, more specifically, to remember what the apostle Paul wrote: "Rejoice in the Lord always [delight, gladden yourselves in Him]; again I say, Rejoice!...

Do not fret or have any anxiety about anything, but in every circumstance and in everything, by prayer and petition (definite requests), with thanksgiving, continue to make your wants known to God.

And God's peace [shall be yours, that tranquil state of a soul assured of its salvation through Christ, and so fearing nothing from God and being content with its earthly lot of whatever sort that is, that peace] which transcends all understanding shall garrison and mount guard over your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus.

For the rest, brethren, whatever is true, whatever is worthy of reverence and is honorable and seemly, whatever is just, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely and lovable, whatever is kind and winsome and gracious, if there is any virtue and excellence, if there is anything worthy of praise, think on and weigh and take account of these things [fix your minds on them]" (Phil 4:6-8, italics mine).

And really, "who of you by worrying and being anxious can add one unit of measure (cubit) to his stature or to the span of his life?" (Matt 6:27).

Of course, I just need to look at my kids to see what being sanguine really means. And that terrible purple-black scar that got me in such a tizzy? You'd have trouble finding it now -- it faded away to nothing.

Thursday, October 6, 2011

loving today


on talking to strangers


The other evening I brought the kids and the dog for a walk. They said they wanted to play on the slides, so I let them. But since I still wanted Kip to get her exercise, I said I would walk around them while they played.

So they got on the playground things and I started walking round and round them on the path. As I rounded one corner,I was surprised to see that a boy had come up to them and was hanging over them, saying something. The boy was big, about 15 or 16, and I did not like how close he was to the kids. B had put her arms around her sister, and was just glaring at him.

Needless to say, I was in his face in a second. I don't think he'd been aware of my presence, because he looked taken aback when I appeared, and he quickly tried to explain himself. Well, "explain himself" doesn't quite capture it; it was more like he was hoping to pull whatever stunt he'd been trying on the kids, on me.

Well of course, it had no effect at all. I just took the kids and left. He tried trailing after us a bit, but I looked at him so murderously that he left off, and I saw him running off in the other direction, from which his friends emerged.

I asked B what she had said to him, and she said, nothing, she just ignored him. He was trying to get them to follow him, and she had just held on to Ro. I can't tell you how much I thanked God that I had been right there on the scene. I shudder to think of the many situations every day, the world over, where young kids are left by themselves, even in as innocuous a place as a playground, and these creepos show up.

I found this excellent article and checklist on Safe Child about safety around strangers. I think all parents should take the time to educate themselves and their children on this -- it's something that's easy to overlook and take for granted.

"The rules I teach children regarding strangers build upon two simple ideas. The first is that there is only one person who is with you all the time, who can be responsible for keeping you safe, all the time. That person is you.

"The second basic idea is that when children are alone, it is their job to take care of themselves. It is not their job to take care of the adults in the world. If an adult needs assistance, they need to get it from another adult, not from a child".

Dr Sherryll Kraizer goes on to provide this "Stranger Rules Checklist":

A stranger is anyone you don't know. You can't tell the good guys from the bad guys by how they look. You are responsible for keeping yourself safe when you're by yourself.

You are responsible for taking care of yourself, not for grownups. Adults who need help should go to another adult.

Instinct is nature's way of talking to you - listen to that inner voice.

The 4 stranger rules you should always follow when you're not with an adult who it taking care of you are:

1. Stay an arms reach plus away from strangers. Stand up, back up and run to someone who can help you if you feel afraid.

2. Don't talk to strangers.

3. Don't take anything from strangers - not even your own things.

4. Don't go anywhere with someone you don't know.

The National Crime Prevention Council has an in-depth article on What to Teach Kids About Strangers:

"Perhaps the most important way parents can protect their children is to teach them to be wary of potentially dangerous situations – this will help them when dealing with strangers as well as with known adults who may not have good intentions. Help children recognize the warning signs of suspicious behavior, such as when an adult asks them to disobey their parents or do something without permission, asks them to keep a secret, asks children for help, or makes them feel uncomfortable in any way. Also tell your children that an adult should never ask a child for help, and if one does ask for their help, teach them to find a trusted adult right away to tell what happened.

"You should also talk to your children about how they should handle dangerous situations. One way is to teach them “No, Go, Yell, Tell.” If in a dangerous situations, kids should say no, run away, yell as loud as they can, and tell a trusted adult what happened right away. Make sure that your children know that it is okay to say no to an adult in a dangerous situation and to yell to keep themselves safe, even if they are indoors. It’s good to practice this in different situations so that your children will feel confident in knowing know what to do.

What Else Parents Can Do

In addition to teaching children how to recognize and handle dangerous situations and strangers, there are a few more things parents can do to help their children stay safe and avoid dangerous situations.

* Know where your children are at all times. Make it a rule that your children must ask permission or check in with you before going anywhere. Give your children your work and cell phone numbers so they can reach you at all times.

* Point out safe places. Show your children safe places to play, safe roads and paths to take, and safe places to go if there’s trouble.

* Teach children to trust their instincts. Explain that if they ever feel scared or uncomfortable, they should get away as fast as they can and tell an adult. Tell them that sometimes adults they know may make them feel uncomfortable, and they should still get away as fast as possible and tell another adult what happened. Reassure children that you will help them when they need it.

* Teach your children to be assertive. Make sure they know that it’s okay to say no to an adult and to run away from adults in dangerous situations.

* Encourage your children to play with others. There’s safety in numbers!

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

what to read on a deserted island

Daily Candy had a great article a few days ago entitled 101 Great Books to Keep You Busy from Now On: What to Read on a Deserted Island.

To solve the problem of "what should we read?", they polled their editors and reader friends about their favourite books. "The results were effusive, even overwhelming at times", they wrote, but they managed to successfully come up with an impressive list of 101 great reads.

Of course we all have our personal feelings about what makes for outstanding literature. I applauded the inclusion of Brave New World, Into The Wild, To Kill a Mockingbird, Anna Karenina, Little Women, and The Fountainhead, as well as the books by John Irving, but I couldn't help wondering about the likes of Flowers In The Attic, The Secret History, and -- hnnngh -- Harry Potter. Twilight was left out at any rate haha..

Well, I thought I'd put together a little collection myself, certainly just a scratch on the surface of the world's great literature. But some of them are pretty thick, so they should keep you well occupied on that deserted island :)


1. Jonathan Strange & Mr Norrell by Susanna Clark
2. Lolita by Vladimir Nabokov
3. Neverwhere by Neil Gaiman
4. The Count Of Monte Cristo by Alexandre Dumas
5. Crime And Punishment by Fyodor Dostoyevsky
6. The Bishop Of Hell & Other Stories by Marjorie Bowen
7. Adam Bede by George Eliot
8. The Woman In White by Wilkie Collins
9. The Gormenghast Novels by Mervyn Peake

I wonder if I could do a Loving Today for each of them?

Sunday, October 2, 2011

Sailor Tabby


Sailor Tabby is in the shop now! He wears a 1920s sailor suit which is handpainted on cream cotton -- both front and back -- and measures about 10 1/2" from his umber-tipped ears to his black shoes. He makes a most unusual, natty accessory on the arm of any chic little person, or on the dresser top or bookshelf of any room!



What I wore to church today:

old Lands End child's shirt
vintage pencil skirt
vintage John Romain purse
vintage Red Cross pin


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