In lieu of trying to belong to any number of societies: Chesterton, Sherlock Holmes, the Inklings, and so on: I propose and establish one of my own. Don your intelligence cap at the door; dust off your logic and imagination; did you bring your inspiration and encouragement? We are shapers, my friends; lit lamps; light-bringers. Bring quotes*; poetry should be uplifting and thoughtful, or witty and clever, (or both). Humor is encouraged; laughter is invited back. Pull up a chair. Anyone for tea?



....""You can rely implicitly on Jeeves. Ah," I said, as the door opened. "Here he comes, his head sticking out at the back and his eyes shining with intelligence and what not. You have thought of something, Jeeves?"
......."Yes, sir."
......."I knew it. I was saying a moment ago that you always find the way. Well, let us have it."
......."There is a method by means of which Mrs. Travers can be extricated from her sea of toubles. Shakespeare."
.......I didn't know why he was addressing me as Shakespeare, but I motioned him to continue.
......."Proceed, Jeeves."
.......He did so, turning now to Aunt Dahlia, who was gazing at him like a bear about to recieve a bun." ~P.G. Wodehouse, Bertie Wooster Sees It Through

From the Indoors, Creativity Pours

Yesterday, there was a blustery wind from the west, over thirty miles an hour--gusting to sixty-- whistling around the house and bending the tree-stems. The barometric pressure was the lowest ever recorded, and the chill gave thoughts of wool coats and new scarves. Definitely time for hot tea and Sir Walter Scott, for homemade toast bread and picture books.

"If you're not from the prairie. . .
" . . . you don't know the wind, you can't know the wind."

And these are from "Garden in the City" by Gerda Muller, whose illustrations are delightful.
I was inspired to do my own illustrating actually. A bit of a marvel, since I very rarely draw, and am not very good at it. Loving Narnia and C. S. Lewis as I do, I had to try Tumnus' cave, and it turned out rather well. I wonder what I'll draw next. . .

I also experimented with pumpkin biscuits, which turned out splendidly. The texture of the dough was absolutely scrumptious, as tender as Marmaduke's 'sea-foam'. It thrilled me!
2 1/2 cups flour
3 Tablespoons packed brown sugar
1 Tablespoon baking powder
3/4 teaspoon salt
1/4 teaspoon cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
1/4 teaspoon ginger
1/2 cup cold butter
2 cups pumpkin
cut the butter into the dry ingredients. . .
stir in the pumpkin. . .
until it forms a ball.
cut out on a floured surface
and cook for 16 or so minutes at 400 degrees.
This morning I woke up to the Heidelberg catechism song by "Voice". It was better than Jeeves's tonic: waking up to good rhythm, gospel truth, and hearty laughter.

. . . And then I realized it was snowing. Joy! The first of the season, with a wind that sounds like a blizzard. By tradition, we always listen to the Charlie Brown Christmas CD on the first snow, so that accompanied our delectable oatmeal and toast.

"When the girl returned, some hours later, she carried a tray, with a cup of fragrant tea steaming on it; and a plate piled up with very hot buttered toast, cut thick, very brown on both sides, with the butter running through the holes in it in great golden drops, like honey from the honeycomb. The smell of that buttered toast simply talked to Toad, and with no uncertain voice; talked of warm kitchens, of breakfast on bright frosty mornings, of cosy parlour firesides on winter evenings, when one's ramble was over and slippered feet were propped on the fender; of the purring of contented cats, and the twitter of sleepy canaries." ~Kenneth Grahame
:::: ::: ::::
We learned about Vladimir of Kiev, Rus from Church History today, and quoted our favorite Wodehouse similes to illustrate our language lessons "[She had] a laugh like a squadron of cavalry charging over a tin bridge." Lunch was linguine with garlic and Parmesan and hot red pepper (olive oil, pasta water, and a dash of cream). Now we are enjoying "Christmas Break", another CD we allow ourselves after the first snow; possibly the cosiest thing in the world.
....'One is inclined to describe this wasp as the Wasp of Fate. Only by supposing it an instrument of destiny can one account for its presence that morning in the small bar of Barribault's Hotel. Even in the country its arrival on the twelfth of May would have been unusual, the official wasping season not beginning till well on into July, and how it came to be in the heart of London's steel and brick at such a time is a problem from which speculation recoils.
....Still there it was, and for a space it volplaned and looped the loop about Lord Shortlands' nose, occasioning him no little concern. It then settled down for a brief breather on the back of Stanwood's coat, and Lord Shortlands, feeling that this was an opportunity which might not occur again, remembering his swashing blow, like Gregory in Romeo and Juliet, and downed it in its tracks with a large, flat hand.
....A buffet between the shoulder blades does something to a man who is drinking a cocktail at the moment. Stanwood choked and turned purple. Recovering his breath, he said (with some justice) "Hey!", and Lord Shortlands hastened to explain. He said:
...."Wasp," repeated Lord Shortlands, and with a pointing finger directed the other's attention to the remains. "Wasp," he added, driving the thing home.
....Stanwood viewed the body, and all doubt concerning the purity of his preserver's motives left him.
...."Wasp," he said, fully concurring.
...."Wasp," said Lord Shortlands, summing the thing up rather neatly. "Messing about on your back. I squashed it."
...."Darned good of you."
...."Not at all."
...."Courageous, too."
...."No, no. Perhaps a certain presence of mind. Nothing more. Offer you a cocktail?"
...."Or me you?"
...."No, me you."
...."Well, you me this time," said Stanwood, yielding the point with a pleasant grace. "But next time me you." ' ~P.G. Wodehouse, Spring Fever

Back in Place

cozy bedroom

Not to say that I am finished with painting projects or anything. . .

Actually, besides my last small shelf that is becoming green, I am also working on varnishing the hull of my sailing sloop--next comes the detailing, and then another coat of varnish, and then assembly and flag-making, before I actually get to see her skim before the breeze with the water lapping under her forefoot, heeling gently on the starboard tack.

The next stage. . .

"Ride now, ride now! Ride to Gondor
..."Suddenly the king cried to Snowmane and the horse sprang away. Behind him his banner blew in the wind, white horse upon a field of green, but he outpaced it. After him thundered the knights of his house, but he was ever before them. Eomer rode there, the white horsetail on his helm floating in his speed, and the front of the first eored roared like a breaker foaming to the shore, but Theoden could not be overtaken. Fey he seemed, or the battle-fury of his fathers ran like new fire in his veins, and he was borne up on Snowmane like a god of old, even as Orome the Great in the battle of the Valar when the world was young. His golden shield was uncovered, and lo! it shone like an image of the Sun, and the grass flamed into green about the white feet of his steed. For morning came, morning and a wind from the sea; and darkness was removed, and the hosts of Mordor wailed, and terror took them, and they fled, and died, and the hoofs of wrath rode over them. And then all the host of Rohan burst into song, and they sang as they slew for the joy of battle was on them, and the sound of their singing that was fair and terrible came even to the City." ~THE RIDE OF THE ROHIRRIM, The Return of the King, J. R. R. Tolkien
Mama mixed some of our old paints to make this delicious avocado color for the smaller furniture in my room. So I have been listening and painting, and most is back to normal. I have a hard time deciding what portion of The Lord of the Rings to quote, because all of it is so glorious. This is only a little sampling, and part of its beauty is in reminding me of the rest. . . still, I hope you like hearing it. [please excuse the lack of proper symbols on Eomer, Orome, etc.]


John Keats. 1795–1821
To Autumn
Season of mists and mellow fruitfulness!
Close bosom-friend of the maturing sun;
Conspiring with him how to load and bless
With fruit the vines that round the thatch-eaves run;
To bend with apples the moss'd cottage-trees,
And fill all fruit with ripeness to the core;
To swell the gourd, and plump the hazel shells
With a sweet kernel; to set budding more,
And still more, later flowers for the bees,
Until they think warm days will never cease,
For Summer has o'er-brimm'd their clammy cells.

Who hath not seen thee oft amid thy store?
Sometimes whoever seeks abroad may find
Thee sitting careless on a granary floor,
Thy hair soft-lifted by the winnowing wind;
Or on a half-reap'd furrow sound asleep,
Drowsed with the fume of poppies, while thy hook
Spares the next swath and all its twinèd flowers;
And sometimes like a gleaner thou dost keep
Steady thy laden head across a brook;
Or by a cider-press, with patient look,
Thou watchest the last oozings hours by hours.

Where are the songs of Spring? Ay, where are they?
Think not of them, thou hast thy music too,—
While barrèd clouds bloom the soft-dying day,
And touch the stubble-plains with rosy hue;
Then in a wailful choir the small gnats mourn
Among the river sallows, borne aloft
Or sinking as the light wind lives or dies;
And full-grown lambs loud bleat from hilly bourn;
Hedge-crickets sing; and now with treble soft
The redbreast whistles from a garden-croft;
And gathering swallows twitter in the skies.


This is what happens when you are painting almost everything in your room. Everything is piled wherever it works.

Just to Say . . .

It doesn't matter. We still love the Vikings!
(so even though they lost last night, I will still show you my loyal gear)
Yes, we are pretty nutty about football around here . . . so Barbaric Icelanders are not the only Vikings that I like to dress like.
purple and gold

~unintentionally October-ish


A very original title, I know. The thing is, I love to paint . . . furniture that is. I'm not sure if I'd like to paint walls so much. The last thing I painted was our hall-way shelves, green, while listening to Lorna Doone on unabridged audio. I love unabridged audio; abridged does not suffice. And now I have been listening to The Lord of the Rings while I paint my bedroom furniture the color of fresh cream. The light color brings out the carve-work beautifully. I will probably give this one another coat, and there is the rest of my furniture, but this is the start.

~the result of overnight braids~

My Project:

you can see the buttery-yellow hint in this picture. . .

I finished this up this morning, and will move on to The Two Towers~

"In the outer office Miss Elphinstone was on the telephone.
"Oh, just a minute," she said as she saw Bill. She put a hand over the mouthpiece. "It's a girl."
"And I always wanted a boy. Too bad."
"Do you know anything about some pictures?"
"I know everything about all pictures."
"It's a Miss Benedick about some pictures she says she saw Mr. Gish about them the day before yesterday belonging to her uncle, Lord Buffenham."
"Ye gods, child, your syntax! What you mean, I presume, is that a Miss Benedick is calling with reference to certain paintings at present the property of her uncle, Lord Uffenham--not Buffenham--concerning which she has been in conference with my employer with a view to his selling them. Yes, I've been briefed about those. Out of the way, Elphinstone, let me grapple with this. Hello? Miss Benedick?"
"Oh, good morning. I'm speaking for my uncle, Lord Uffenham," said a voice, and Bill nearly dropped the receiver.
For the voice was a voice in a million, a voice that cast a spell and wooed the ear to listen, a voice that stole into a man's heart and stirred him up as with a ten-foot pole. He had never in his life heard anything that made so instant an appeal to him, and strange thrills ran up his spine and out at the roots of his hair.
With difficulty he contrived to speak.
"Was . . . was it about those pictures of Lord Uffenham's?"
"Down at Shipley Hall?"
"You called here about them the other day."
Bill wished that she would not confine herself to monosyllables. He wanted long, lovely sentences.
"I'm going to Shipley Hall this afternoon to look at them."
"Oh, good. Who are you?"
"Mr. Gish's assistant. Ah, shut up, woman."
"I beg your pardon?"
"I'm sorry. I was addressing the fatheaded lady receptionist at my elbow. She said she betted I couldn't say 'Mr. Gish's assistant' ten times quick."
"And can you?"
"I'm not sure."
"Well do try. And thank you ever so much. I'll tell my uncle." " ~The Butler did it --P.G. Wodehouse

Photo Shoot

Ben took these pictures a few weeks ago, and I never got around to posting them, so here they are. I was feeling in a medieval mood that day.~