Saturday, 8 March 2014

My Saturday Ramblings . . .

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I have always had a deep interest in reading and in studing the written word, and yes . . . in writing.  My father is the person who instilled in me my deep love of reading.   He read to me frequently from my children's books, often from the same one.  There was one story that he read to me so frequently that he still knows if off by heart and I can still hear him in my mind's eye reading it out loud, his voice high pitched and squeaking as he mimicked the different characters in the story.  This memory touches my heart in a deep and tender way.  Out of all of the gifts my parents gave to me . . . next to the love,  and my faith in the Saviour . . .  this was the most precious gift of all.  I cannot remember a time in my life when I did not have at least two books on the go that I am reading.

If you can read . . . you are never alone.    You never stop learning.  You get to visit and experience countless things, even if it's only ever within the realms of your imagination.  A good writer is capable of carrying you to lofty heights and amazing places, of inspiring every feeling and emotion within the  realms of the human experience, of painting imagery with their words that rivals even the most beautiful of paintings or photographs. . . . this is an amazing gift.

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I was blessed throughout the years to have teachers at school who also inspired in me  a love of reading the written word, and helped to instill in me a love of writing . . . stories, poems, letters, etc.  I can still recite poems memorized back in grade school . . .

Once there was an elephone who tried to use a telephone . . .The Wreck of the Hesperus . . . Gunga Din . . . amongst many.  My favourite one has always been this one . . .

I think that I shall never see
A poem as lovely as a tree

A tree whose hungry mouth is prest
Against the sweet earth's flowing breast

A tree that looks to God all day
And lifts her leafy arms to pray

A tree that may in summer wear
A nest of robins in her hair

Upon whose bosom snow has lain
Who intimately lives with rain  

Poems are made by fools like me
But only God . . . can make a tree.
~Joyce Kilmer  

Even now I can remember all the words, and my heart is touched by them.

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This did not change in high school.  My best marks were always in English.  I loved studying Shakespeare and Tennyson, Walt Whitman, Tolstoy . . . novels such as To Kill a Mockingbird, Animal Farm, Lord of the Flies, Farenheit 451,  Pride and Prejudice, The Old Man and the Sea, Moby Dick . . . The Catcher in the Rye, The Grapes of Wrath . . . amongst the countless books which were required reading.

I had a fabulous High School English teacher named Mr Patterson.   His classes were different.   The desks were set out in a circle around the perimeters of the classroom so that we were all looking inward and across at each other and he was in the centre.   He made English literature exciting.   In his class we studied not only the required reading, but also musical prose . . . Jesus Christ Superstar, The Beatles Sgt Pepper's album, amongst others.  He taught us to see literature and prose all around us . . . in all of our experiences and environments . . .  in the music we loved to listen to . . .  in  . . . life.  He was, simply put . . . a great teacher.

When I went on to University, I studied Canadian Literature.   Margaret Attwood, Farley Mowatt, Mordecai Richler . . . Bliss Carmin, Leonard Cohen . . . I loved all of it and studing it.  I loved writing it.   Somewhere I still have a file folder of poetry that I wrote during that time, and when I look at it I think it's quite good actually . . .

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I've always loved writing little stories and poems.   I actually think in rhyme a lot of the time.  I don't know if that's unusual or not.   Maybe it's just further evidence that I am a bit odd . . . if anyone were to listen to me in the shower they would not hear me singing, but speaking in rhyme, making up little tales that I then dash to write down as soon as I get out of the shower.

There was an old lady
with a wart on her nose
in a baggy black dress
and wrinkled black hose . . . 

That kind of thing you know.   That's the sort of thing I write now.  I keep them all in a notebook, and I have begun to illustrate a few, and I enjoy that too.  I was always making up stories for my own children at our nightly story time . . .  and now I write them for the grandchildren.   They don't always get to see them though, because of this awful habit I have of perfectionism which prevents me from showing them my words until I have penned them in just the right manner. . .

Yes, I am a bit odd, but I hope it's in a wonderfully endearing way.  ☺

We have two Baptisms to go to today, and then we are having supper out with some friends.   I will probably do a bit of baking here at home on the range . . .  I am thinking scones or some such.   In the meantime, here's a quote to carry with you through today.  (I do so love  quotes!)

"You can never cross the ocean
unless you have the courage 
to lose sight of the shore."

There is a Saint Patricks Day Feast cooking in The English Kitchen today.   

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A Saint Patrick's Day Salad of Apple Dressed Pears with Walnuts and Cashel Blue Toasties

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An Irish Stew of Beef and Guinness served with Colcannon

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Flourless Chocolate Cake served with Vanilla Bean Ice Cream and a Bailey's Chocolate Sauce.

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ღ♥ღƸӜƷღ♥ღ Have A Lovely & Blessed Saturdayღ♥ღƸӜƷღ♥ღ
╚══════════....๑ ƸӜƷ ๑♥๑ ƸӜƷ ๑....═══════════╝  


  1. Marie unless I sing something I cannot remember it. I do remember learning Eletelephony and that is about it. A few years ago I had an operation that went very wrong and have struggled with memory ever since. You and I studied many of the same books. The major exceptions were the Australian books such as The Getting of Wisdom and The Mango Tree. Some I loathed.

    A few years ago i saw a terrific production of Jesus Christ Superstar. One young man, behind us, commented on the quality of the story and lamented he had not heard it before. How I wished I had a gospel to share with him that day.

  2. We share a rich heritage of parents who taught us to love reading as well as other wonderful things. I still use a fountain pen to write letters, still read my Bible each morning and keep a prayer/blessing and thankful journal.
    Your watercolors are fabulous and the meal looks delicious. Perhaps I'm feeling better, food is starting to look good again.

  3. My parents always claim that I was born with a book in my hands. I loved reading from the moment I could understand words and have always been a voracious reader. As you say, one is never bored when you have a book for company. I managed to pass that love for books on to my children as well, which is lovely to see.

    Oh that St Paddy's Day feast sounds so good! I am keeping my fingers crossed that you win that trip to the Emerald Isle.

    Enjoy the weekend. We have lovely, sunny weather today which is just the tonic we needed to brush away those winter blues.

  4. I have not heard of those books Suzan. I suppose different countries have a different curriculum!

    Thanks Thistle Cove! I have always kept a prayer/gratitude journal as well!

    Marie, hooray for the sunshine! It's dry here today, which is always a plus, although it is cold and overcast. Dry is good.

  5. I love to read too..FAR LESS well read than you though:)

  6. I do love to read too. Never a day goes by but that I read a little and more often than not I read a lot. Truly life without reading wouldn't be the same. What a gift is is to be able to read! I'm looking forward to some St. Patrick's Day food. I do love cabbage and there are so many different ways to fix it.

  7. HI...I've followed your blog for a long time and that Poem "Trees" is the first poem I can remember ever reading and memorizing. I thought you might enjoy this response by Orson F Whitney if case you have never heard it

    Are Poets, then but clownish tools, and Poesy, the sport of fools. Surely you did not mean it friend, forgive me please, if I offend. The God who made the lovely tree, made poets too and poetry. He who fashioned the magic oak, through Shakespere and through Wordsworth spoke. He who planted the up towering pine gave form and force to Milton's line. Folly's creation! Are they so? A million voices answer no, and none among them will decree, that Kilmer was less then Kilmer's tree.

  8. MOnique, I have four books on the go at the moment! That's probably why it takes me so long to finish one!

    Pam, I'm with you on the cabbage front. I could make a meal of just cabbage! I love the stuff!!

    Summer Days, I had never read that poem before. Thank you so much for sharing it! I love it!!! I'm copying it down into my book of quotes and poems!


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