Thursday, April 20, 2017


































































































































  



  





 

In the last few days, the trees have burst their buds in a delicate display of chartreuse, pink, white, and lavender lace. Beside every fence and lane are bright drifts of golden forsythia and purpley-pink mounds of azalea. I've donned my garden gloves and tidied the flower beds and pruned and nourished the roses. 

Last Thursday the David Austin rose catalog arrived in my mailbox--I haven't put it down since. Do you receive this wonder? It is a coffee-table-worthy publication of gorgeous photos, beautiful descriptions, and lots of helpful information and tips on growing English roses. I don't have any English roses in my garden yet (I have two floribundas: Moondance and Sunsprite; and two hybrid teas: Falling in Love and Let Freedom Ring; none of which are particularly happy with our New England winters--makes you wonder why they sell these varieties here), but I've told my family that my Mother's Day wish is for two D.A. English roses: The Lady of Shalott, and Mustead Wood--even the names are delightful to me.

Last week I saw the most dazzling sunset of my life right outside my door. The sky was lit up in every shade of pink (the photo above is completely untouched). I stood there marveling at the awesome play of colored light, and for just a moment I was enraptured and forgot all the earthly things: the bills and bombs and health concerns and dead fish. The only thing of true importance was the way the sky flared pink as the sun went down.

I'm still knitting my 'Fronds' nap blanket, but I've cast-on some socks, too. The pattern is 'Lace and Cable Socks' by Wendy Johnson.  I'm using Ivy Brambles 'Sockscene' yarn in the Secret Garden colorway. I'm obsessed with this yarn--it's all the colors of spring: moss, chartreuse, lilac, azalea, rose; sqeeeeee! I'll probably finish one sock and then cast-on a new project (my life is incredibly mundane, so I must insist on variety in my hobbies😁). I have an old skein of Dream in Color 'Starry' in the Some Summer Sky colorway that I want to knit into a Soft Sunday shawl by Suvi Simola next. When I'm finished with that project, I will knit the other lace and cable sock, and perchance get back to working on 'Fronds'. In between, I'll be painting rocks for our town's Kindness Rock Project (the ones in the photo above, however, are not mine; I tend to paint whimsical scenes and critters) and painting postcards and other little things. 

Easter was the strangest I've ever experienced. My older kids all had to work, so we didn't have dinner until quite late--after seven pm. We dined al fresco on the deck because it was 86 degrees (New England gets a few rogue summer days in the midst of our traditionally cool, wet springs). We colored eggs Friday evening, and I made Easter bread on Saturday. Sunday was sleepy and unseasonably warm. We spent most of the day lazying around and puttering in the garden. 

I'm reading aloud The Legends of King Arthur and His Knights by Sir James Knowles to my youngest (who is not quite eleven). It's an old and wonderful telling that has made me want to find a good novel about King Arthur to read myself. I've been looking at different books and series but can't decide. A lot of people like The Mists of Avalon, but I don't think it's for me. I love Mary Stewart, so The Crystal Cave is in the running. Are there any other King Arthur novels you can recommend to me? 

Thank you to everyone who commented on my last post. I intended to reply to each one, but time got away from me. It seems I rarely have the chance to be online for very long these days, which makes me wonder why I try to keep a blog at all. A great deal has changed in my life in the last few years, and in some ways blogging isn't the best fit anymore, but I really don't like Instagram. I do deeply appreciate everyone who takes the time to read here. ♥

10 comments:

  1. I disliked The Mists of Avalon both times I tried to read it, and then I found out about the author and will not try to read the book again. Unfortunately, I don't know many novels of King Arthur, but if you get some recommendations I will be happy for I'd like to read one myself.

    I hope you will continue blogging as I always love to read and see what you're up to. Your life seems so warm and lovely, even with its trials. :-)

    Hugs and love.

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    1. So far, I have not been able to find a King Arthur book that suits my taste. What I want is a retelling that retains the spirit of the legends and attempts to be true to the mores of the time period rather than superimposing modern mores onto the characters.

      Thank you for saying such nice things about my blog.

      Much love to you.♥

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    2. It just occured to me that you might like the books of Nancy Springer, if you can find them - The White Hart, the Golden Sun, the Sable Moon. They are not Arthurian legends, but they are based on very old stories, and are beautifully written in a delicate, quaint style. They are among my favourites. I first got them when I lived on an island and have precious memories of reading them on the roof of the old slow ferry, sailing home.

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    3. Some of my best memories are of reading beautiful books. I am so grateful for your recommendation, dear Sarah. Although these books are not available through my library system, I previewed The White Hart on Amazon and it looks wonderful.♥

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  2. Your photos are so lovely--that woodpecker! The bread! The sunset! I will have to look into that catalog. I know some people who would love to see some beautiful roses. I appreciate it, whenever you have the time to write. I've followed you everywhere. ;-)

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    1. If you go to the David Austin USA website, you can request a free catalog.

      Thank you for saying such nice things about my blog and my photos. My camera is just an inexpensive point and shoot digital (Sony Cybershot). I like it because it's small and fits into my pocket.

      ♥♥♥

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  3. I'm glad that you keep a blog :) lovely spring bursting forth and that Easter weather was crazy wasn't it? I was in Pittsburgh and the Saturday was 82 degrees, I had a lunch outside with my sister :) Happy Easter!

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    1. Our weather on Easter was crazy and summer like. I'm glad you got to enjoy it with your sister in Pittsburgh. Its been mostly cool and rainy since then--very typical spring weather for New England. As I write, the rain is pouring down. ♥

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  4. Oh, the David Austin rose catalogue!! I've spent many a happy cup of tea flipping through the pages...dreaming, dreaming. I had some money gifted to me at Christmas and decided to put it towards a few DA roses. They ship bare-rooted and so I'm awaiting the email to say they're on the way! I can't tell you how exciting it is! I have an odd assortment in the garden already, but the DA ones...well, they're sort of the royal family of roses, aren't they? sorry, i could rabbit on for ages about roses.....:)

    i liked the Mists of Avalon...but then again, i read it when i was in my early 20's so perhaps i might not like it as much now. I've read a few versions of the Arthur story, but cannot for the life of me remember any of them as being particularly outstanding. I read The Crystal Cave recently and thoroughly enjoyed it....which reminds me, i wanted to see if the library had the rest of the series. probably not, that's just how our library rolls. ;)

    i'm so glad to see a post from you -- i enjoy your photos and thoughts and it's such a lovely place to visit. xoxo

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    1. Which DA roses did you choose? I intend to add a new rose (or two) every year until my entire garden is full of them!

      The Arthur tales are so compelling. I hope to find one with an authentic feel to it that at least attempts to retain the spirit and mystery of the story rather than superimposing modernity's ideas and mores onto it. I've heard good things about Mary Stewart's trilogy.

      Mel, I receive your newsletter and read your blog and it seems as though we have many things in common. I feel a strong connection to you.

      ♥♥♥

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