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Tuesday, 10 March 2009

Entertaining Myself

Ah there is nothing like a new book or four to bring a teeny bit more joy to a lemon yellow Spring morning, which is why I was absolutely thrilled to hear Postman Steven using all his old man might to shove a couple of Amazon packages through my door yesterday morning... First on my list: the vintage delight that is Etiquette and Entertaining by the very Darling Lady Troubridge, who offers little gems of wisdom designed to "help you on your social way" during all manner of occasion and finally sums up her attitude to both life and social grace with the motto, never be afraid... " Never be afraid. Be sad and sorry sometimes because we all must be that way now and then. Be perplexed because life is not all plain sailing. But never let life be too much for you. It won't if you take as your motto these three words, which I'll repeat again: NEVER BE AFRAID." Second in my parcel came a book I have been avoiding for a few months, tempted though I was by the word "Vintage" in the title. This is because I am an outrageous book snob and the very idea of being caught reading something that could be deemed "chick lit" made me shiver. But oh how glad I am that I got over myself and ordered A Vintage Affair by Isobel Wolff, because the fact that I read it from cover to cover last night should be proof enough to show you that it was just my cup of tea and differs from most chick lit in being so thoroughly informed about vintage fashion (it is absolutely littered with references to vintage designers and collectible garments!) as well as telling a gently melancholy story rich in history and mildly at odds with its genre. I am only sorry I devoured it so very very quickly, because it was one of those books I would have liked to go live in: who wouldn't, after all want to live in a shop called Village Vintage? But onwards and upwards to tonight's bedtime book: one I had featured in the sidebars of Brocante for a while and I know many of you ordered, Secrets of Simplicity by Mary Carlomagno. I'm quite excited about this one, because I do so like the kind of self help book written to show me how to calm the storm that is my life, and this one, designed as a workbook with questions and spaces to write your thoughts, is divided into seven sections, all with the kind of headings that speak to my needy self: Release, Simplify, Treasure, Focus, Invest, Discover and Thrive. Sounds promising, mais non? Well we'll see, let me read it first and then I will let you know whether here we have a book about to turn my life on it's frizzy mopped head... Lastly in the care package I sent my soul? Someting that isn't a book at all, but a collection of Crafty Stickers in the kinds of designs I want to stick over every jar in my kitchen as well as attach to piles of homemade gifts I haven't yet thought up. Truly lovely they are and well worth the teeny amount of money they cost, making them in fact the prefect puttery treat to enjoy next week when the Vintage Housekeepers Circle Seasonal Scrub is done and dusted... Read any good books lately Housekeepers? Do tell won't you? My literary greed knows no bounds.


Kimberly said...

I just did an Amazon order last night for eight new (to me!) books. Gulp!I haven't ordered any for me since last March. I think this is becoming a birthday tradition. :)
I've been visiting the classics these last few weeks. I've just finished Little Women, Little Men and am working through Pilgrim's Progress. Oh, Persuasion was delightful as well.
Not too many new books here except gardening books from the library. I am constantly perusing MaryJane Butters' Ideabook*Cookbook*Lifebook. It is so rich in ideas for a more natural life. I adore it. I love to know what people are reading! It tells me so much about them. I find it so sad that so few of the ladies I know actually sit down and read a book. How much they miss!

Amy said...

I've got that etiquette book by Lady Troubridge too, it's a gem :-)

LexyB said...

I am entirely into undelicate books ... have just read Augusten Burroughs' Magical Thinking and re-read Running With Scissors. I love that man's writing. It's kind of like watching a car crash and a comedy show all at once.

Anonymous said...

Oh I am so very glad that you have mentioned A Vintage Affair and that you enjoyed it. I have been toying with the idea of buying it once I heard that it is set in and around Blackheath. I live about a five moment bus ride from the heath and do all my window shopping there.

I too was rather worried by the whole 'chick lit' lable, but I shall give it a go ([erhaps hidden behind a copy of the Times...)

Vintage Tea said...

I've seen A Vintage Affair on the shelves and too was tempted by "Vintage" in the title!!

Victoria xx

mary said...

I absolutely LOVE that "never be afraid" passage...just copied it onto my list of favorite quotes!

Counting Your Blessings said...

I spent much too long at the book store yesterday afternoon! But it was right down the road from the ice cream shoppe where my son's basketball team was celebrating. Goodness knows I need books more than ice cream!

Oh, and we have a Postman Steven too :) Except they just put our favorite mailman on a different route so I'm forcing myself to believe that Mrs. Mail Lady with the fake tan is going to be as fabulous as Steven.

Blessings... Polly (love how you said "lemon yellow Spring day"!)

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