Monday, December 22, 2014


holidays around the house

All my ancient literature reading plans seem to be on hold.  The Aeneid, Moses Hadas's Ancilla to Classical Reading, and The Norton Book of Classical Literature, edited by Bernard Knox, are all hogging prime real estate on the bedside table.  With stacks in the hinterlands of the book room, waiting.  But I've been forgoing them all for new stuff, since I keep wandering into bookstores (and lingering over Patrick O'Brian still, too, not wanting the series to end, even as I know it will).  In the last few weeks I've read brand new books by Mary Oliver, Anne Lamott, and Maira Kalman, and read brand new-to-me secondhand books by Jonathan Lethem, William Plomer, and Paul Monette, ditto books about David Hockney, Picasso, and Beatrix Potter.  They are mostly wonderful, but I must forgo full reports for now, since not only did I pound my thumb quite dreadfully with a hammer, while putting a tarp on the woodpile, I also drilled it with a drill bit while framing paintings, and I cannot easily hit the space bar on my keyboard at this time.  In short, typing hurts.  So I will merely send out my best wishes for a warm and cozy holiday season, along with a few pictures of same from around our old Maine house.

Every year I take some favorite Christmas books off the shelf and let them see the light of day for a few weeks.  The Rockwell Kent book is a new addition this year.  As is this vintage Mrs. Tiggy-Winkle figurine - she seemed to be calling for some candy canes, too.  Happy to oblige:

Our Christmas tree has many birds on it.  Just one in the nest on the lamp, though, a felt chickadee, resting near a row of living room reading, atop the printer's type case that used to hold court in my bookshop:

We had some extra strings of lights this year so I tumbled them across the top of the dresser where we put up holiday cards as they arrive.  Can't have enough light around during this dark solstice week:

Until next time, when I hope to be less accident-prone and more verbose: wishing you a Joyeux Noël dear friends, and peace in the new year.

Merry Christmas, Sarah! I hope you and your husband have a very good holiday.
And to you, Kim, thanks! I hope Santa brings us all some books...
A Merry Bookish Christmas!
Dear Antony, thank you and a very happy Christmas to you and your family!
p.s. if anyone cares to read a lovely meandering piece of writing, please consider Ronald Blythe's essay this week - it is particularly fine:

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