Rose Barmy

I’ve abandoned my books, my roses have beckoned me out to the garden most every day.

Because of our winter and spring rains – my roses are at their absolute finest.

So, I’ll take this opportunity to show you (and document for myself) their splendor ~~ the best blooming in years.

 

(Note: the back garden is quite steep so the second photo is as you walk  down the stone path.)

Then I spend much happy time arranging bouquets all over the house…even the bathroom ~~

Then, as the petals fall, I collect them for drying and ultimately, potpourri.

The house smells wonderful.

 

 

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The good life

Husband and I aren’t very materialistic, we live modestly, don’t drive a fancy car, have but one television, and are known (and teased) for being quite frugal.  “No, we didn’t get your text, we don’t have smart phones…really.”

But we do succumb to a few indulgences – books (natch), good food, wine  ~~ and especially travel.

On a whim, and with a Groupon deal in hand (see, thrifty), last week we took off for a few days on the Russian River.

Our room overlooked the river, full and swift moving after all our winter/spring rains.

 

We went for a long hike in the redwoods

Did a bit of antique looking – just looking…

 

Visited a rose nursery and garden – again just looking (no more roses, someone kept muttering…)

And watched a drop dead beautiful sunset on the coast, where the river meets the ocean.

 

It’s not a large life – but for us, it’s a good life.

 

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Agatha Raisin

Remember THIS post?

Well it’s here.  Agatha Raisin has come to American PBS (check your local listings). The other evening, nursing a hurt back, and with a mild pain reliever, I tuned into the first two in this series.

As always, when transferring my brain from book to the screen — there are adjustments to be made.  The story lines have been condensed to fit into 60 minute segments, so you can’t be too tied to the books.  But, I’m happy to report that, all in all, this is a very good adaptation.

Just like Jessica Fletcher in the Murder, She Wrote series, death and disaster follow Agatha into the small Cotswold village where she has chosen to retire from her public relations business.  And, what a village — the cottages are postcard pretty and while Agatha has moved into the perfect cottage she’s decorated it with ultra modern London furnishings.

Agatha doesn’t fare well in her new fictional village of Carsley.  She wears  heels and tight skirts around the village, she steals her neighbor’s cleaning woman, tries to wheedle tips on the perfect quiche from the baking competition judge, who then propositions her when his wife steps away. Agatha’s perfect cottage is robbed, she enters a quiche purchased in London for the village baking competition, and while her quiche doesn’t win — it does kill someone…(no spoilers here).

As her friend and former employee Roy sums it up for her, “Look at it positively, Aggie, you’ve already cheated, been burgled, killed someone, and you’ve been wanted by the police. It’s plain sailing from here.”

The casting of the series is excellent, especially Agatha and DC Bill Wong. The village residents are, as in the books, completely taken aback by Agatha and her bumbling attempts to fit into village life.  “You could give me a few hints on how to do the things that people do when they do things around here,” she pleads with a fellow village resident.

Just as the written series, the TV adaption is light, funny, and serious mental powers are not required — in fact it actually helps to be in a silly mood (or, as in my case, on pain meds).

So pop some popcorn and take a lovely break from day-to-day reality — go visit the Cotswolds with the delightful Agatha Raisin.

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A special day

Among those whom I like or admire,

I can find no common denominator,

but among those whom I love, I can:

all of them make me laugh.

W.H. Auden

Celebrating thirty-eight years of love, friendship, and especially ~~~ laughter.

 

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The Longest Night

It’s the solstice – so here’s a poem. Light a candle, bring your loved ones close, and hold fast against the longest night.

Peace & love, Book Barmy
*****************************************************************

And so the Shortest Day came and the year died
And everywhere down the centuries of the snow-white world
Came people singing, dancing,
To drive the dark away.
They lighted candles in the winter trees;
They hung their homes with evergreen;
They burned beseeching fires all night long
To keep the year alive.
And when the new year’s sunshine blazed awake
They shouted, reveling.
Through all the frosty ages you can hear them
Echoing behind us – listen!
All the long echoes, sing the same delight,
This Shortest Day,
As promise wakens in the sleeping land:
They carol, feast, give thanks,
And dearly love their friends,
And hope for peace.
And now so do we, here, now,
This year and every year.

Susan Cooper

Courtesy of Stephanie HERE

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and then there’s this…

9izek459t

 

Another favorite is  THIS Christmas Ad from 2013.

 

Happy jingle bells — indeed.

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