Tuesday, January 29, 2013

Dickensian Fashion

These past few evenings my family and I have been partaking together in the Andrew Davies adaptation of Charles Dickens Little Dorrit. We all equally adore a good British drama (though my fourteen-year-old sister is reluctant to admit so,) and as Mom, Elizabeth, and I watch Dickens' tapestry of a tale play out, we adore and envy the fashions of that bygone era. I long for a knitted shawl and a long flowing cape. And so I've decided to make those craved garments.

I learned to knit from a dear friend a few years ago, and though I shall have to wait until a later date for my cape (as a knitted cape is not quite what I have in mind) I can still knit plenty of shawls, glovelets, and hooded capelets for my pleasure.

An abundance of patterns. 

My quickly growing collection of knitting needles.

Yarn and other necessary supplies.

A head scarf in process for my Mom.

  I don't consider myself a crafty person, I usually much prefer picking up a book or journal to that sort of creativity. But I do love to knit, and I plan to spend many hours in the near future producing some Dickensian accessories.

Everything I need to make a knitted capelet.


Thursday, January 24, 2013

Cloudy Thursday

There is nothing like a warm cup of tea (or two or three) to warm your body and soul on a cold, drizzly day.

Friday, January 18, 2013

Beautiful Day

After several days of record-breaking freezing temperatures, we've been blessed with a few beautiful days of warm, spring-like weather and sunshine.

Though I still hope for snow soon (and we surely need some more winter) I always prefer warm weather to cooler weather. You don't even need a light coat to go outdoors today, and the air smells so sweet. 

Mr. Bingley out enjoying the sunshine. 

The chickens out enjoying the sunshine. 

Though the trees are bare and nearly all of the flowers asleep, the daffodils are blooming, like little suns themselves, giving even the bleakest and barest of seasons beauty. A reminder that spring is not far away.

Friday, January 11, 2013

A Disney/Pixar I.Q. Test

                                                           Can you identify these people?

Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Back to Book Club

Ah, January. That industrious month of maintaining resolutions and going back to a normal daily life after the parties and feasts of the holiday season.

Today Mom, Elizabeth, and I resumed our weekly visits to the local Starbucks for our literary class/reading and writing club. Over coffee, tea, and warm sandwiches, we discussed Dickens, George Eliot, Downton Abbey, that British drama we've heard so much about and have finally dived into (and are loving), as well as branching off onto other topics that have very little to do with our initial subject at all. (Often followed by, "How did we get on this topic anyway?" Life is so canonical!)

In today's chapter of Harold Bloom's Western Canon, Bloom chose to focus on only one of Charles Dickens novels, Bleak House. (Thank goodness we only went over one or we may have been reading that chapter for weeks!) I have never read Bleak House but have read other novels by Dickens and seen a very good BBC adaptation. It is much easier to watch a television production of Dickens than to read one of his novels because the man does tend to ramble. I remember one case in David Copperfield where he spent two very long paragraphs talking about something that had literally nothing to do with the story! And Dickens has so many characters to keep track of. As Elizabeth accurately stated, "If Dickens spends two lines describing someone, that person will change your life!" 'Tis true.

Well Charles Dickens is not one of my favorite authors, I would much rather read Jane Austen or Norah Lofts, but he does belong in the canon of Western literature. He did after all give us The Christmas Carol, and A Tale of Two Cities is on my list of books to re-read in the near future.   

Of George Eliot I know almost nothing and have never really read any of her works. I did learn some interesting things about her from today's chapter and our discussion, but I prefer chapters where I at least know something about the writer we're discussing and/or have read their work. It makes it easier to pick out why they belong in the Canon, and then I don't have to go completely off of Bloom's opinions which, I confess, I tend not to trust. (We don't see eye to eye on everything.)  I'm always grateful that my Mom is so well educated and understands just about everything Bloom is talking about, because I sure don't!

Next week we read about and discuss Tolstoy, who I know nothing about except that I believe he is Russian (Russian literature=depressing) and he's one of the authors Quorra has read in Tron: Legacy.

Monday, January 7, 2013

Had a Good Mystery Lately?

Because we sure did. Believe it or not I am not very internet savvy at all. So earlier today when I went to get on the internet and a relatively blank page with the triangle of doom, as Elizabeth and I call it, center stage along with some text sat staring at me, I just said, "Oh well, I'll get on later." Many times the internet just does not work at our house. However when I went to get on later the same thing happened, but only when I went on my e-mail or blogger. It said it could not connect because there was something wrong with the cookies. Cookies? As in chocolate chip?

What it is with naming these electronics after food anyway? Apple products from Mackintosh and cookies on the internet? Not to mention blackberries.

Long story short, Mom, Dad, and Elizabeth came to my rescue and between us we solved the mystery. (Something about Firefox, Google, and cookies. Elizabeth erased my cookies and everything is working now.) And when all was said and done I forgot what I had wanted to post about in the first place.

Thursday, January 3, 2013

Too Funny!

I came across this funny scene yesterday in my younger sister's room. (I can't call her my little sister anymore since she is now taller than I am!)

Rachel loves the Avengers and Legos and does not like her math. So here we have her Avengers Lego figures fighting her "evil" math book, and I thought this was just too funny not to share!  

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Aloha 2013

Aloha! Getting together with our friends-like-family on New Year's Eve and throwing a big party has become a tradition for us. Last year our theme was Pirates. "Arrgh!" And this year we had a luau. We placed palm trees among the snowflakes and leis around the snowmen, and my Dad built a hot enough fire so we could wear our Hawaiian shirts and sun dresses without freezing.

Picking out our theme for 2013 took some thinking, and our ideas included "Hurray for Hollywood" and a "Disney Ball." However, my aunt was not able join us for New Year's this year and it would be simply wrong to have a Disney Ball without her. I think she's Mickey and Minnie's biggest fan!

Inspired by upcoming trips to Hawaii, we finally decided on a luau. My mom and I will be meeting my aunt and uncle on Oahu this April for my graduation trip. I'm really looking forward to walking on the beach, breathing in the tropical air, and seeing the sights on the island. Plus I get to spend it with my cool Mom, aunt, and uncle. (Aunt Cindy and Uncle Cliff, we miss you so much.)

Happy New Year!