Friday, August 7, 2009


Oh my seems like an age since I was here last. In fact, the longer I left it the less I felt like blogging!

The school holidays seem to be whizzing by but I'm finally starting to feel as if my batteries are recharging. I think I was ready for the break from work and the school routine. Very little craftiness has occurred - other than a little sock knitting.

The summer reading campaign is going well. I've read these ones so far (most of them your great recommendations):

Cold Comfort Farm by Stella Gibbons - recommended by Sainsbury's magazine! I'd never read this classic but once I got into it, I really enjoyed it. A very funny book, with great characters, and a main character who loves nothing more than organising other people's lives.

I Capture the Castle by Dodie Smith - recommended by Rachel. I loved this book - the quirkiness of the characters, the beautifully described settings - fab!

Miss Pettigrew Lives for a Day by Winifred Watson. My first taste of Persephone books and a lucky find at the library. Another one I loved - the main character Guinnevere Pettigrew normally lives a poor and very staid spinster's life but finds herself thrown into a world of oppulence, glamour and loose morals - a great snapshot of 1930's London society.

The Other Boleyn Girl by Phillippa Gregory - recommended by Trashy and very possibly my favourite read so far. I rarely choose historical novels but this one is well worth reading. The intrigue, ruthless ambition and back stabbing of the Tudor court had me gripped! I didn't want this book to finish.

PS I Love You by Cecelia Ahern - recommended by Mrs Locket. I'm a latecomer to Cecelia Ahern's books and have intended to read this for some time. A great read - very sad, funny and poignant as the main character struggles to come to terms with the loss of her husband.

The Hat Shop on the Corner by Marita Conlon-McKenna - given to me by Maria :) A perfect light hearted romantic book that was a huge relief to read after The Other Boleyn Girl! A good story of little people triumphing over the corporate giants too.

Gods In Alabama by Joshilyn Jackson - sent to me by Jo :) Again, I would not normally have chosen to read this book but I'm so glad I did. It was a great story with a wicked little twist at the end. Great tortured characters all trying to come to terms with their own personal tragedies and trying to put dark secrets behind them.

I've just started Chocolat by Joanne Harris - I know the whole world has read this but as usual I'm late to the party! Loving it so far.

I was going to put in links to all those books but have just realised I'm too darned lazy - you can Google them, right? :)

A good deal of that reading was done over the past week. We went over the sea to the Isle of Wight - our first time there since we moved down south 12 years ago!

The weather was kind - thank goodness, as we were camping! The children had the best time, with loads of freedom, making lots of friends and fun days out, followed by falling into bed after dark with rosy cheeks and dirty feet :)

We did the touristy thing and visited Alum Bay and the Needles. The coloured sands of the crumbling cliffs at Alum Bay were a sight to behold.

A walk along the cliff to The Old Needles Battery .......

.....and the chance to see the iconic chalk outcrops of the Needles, was my favourite day out.

For the children, it was the theme park fun at Black Gang Chine :)

I'm now ploughing through a mountain of laundry and getting ready to send my little boy off to his first ever Cubs Camp.

I'm hoping for plenty more evening skies like this for the next three weeks at least!


Lucy Locket-Pocket said...

Yay! You're back!!!! It's been sooooo quiet without you!

But it looks like you've had a fabulous time and what a lot of reading you've done!

That picture of the Sausage Monster leaping through the air is amazing!

Locket xxxx

rachelmp said...

Whooooaaah. You managed a lot of reading. Just love the pic of the chain mail with the pink shoes. Love it!

Thimbleanna said...

Hahaha -- you know how when you click on comments you're saying in your head what you're going to type? Mine was "Yay! You're back!" and there LUCY has jumped in and grabbed it from me! It looks like you're having a wonderful summer -- I think not much sewing and knitting happens in the summer -- as it should be -- it's a time to enjoy the beautiful outdoors. Loooovvveee the happy pictures of your family on holiday!


A lovely post. Thanks for the book reviews, I am looking for a good book to read at the moment. Hope you enjoy the rest of your summer just as much ...


Gina said...

Good to see you back... I've only been back for a few days. I've just finished The Other Boleyn Girl and loved it! I read it in two days... couldn't put it down. It was like an historical soap opera... but so much better! Mrs Pettigrew and Chocolate are favourites too... you must read Lollipop Shoes when you've finished!

wonderwoman said...

lovely to have you back - looks like a fun holiday - haven't read the other boleyn girl but will add it to my list - i loved Mrs Pettigrew and Cholocate - have to admit the dvd with Johnny Depp is one of mine and Em's favorites!


French Knots said...

Yes you must read Lollipop Shoes too, in fact I like all Joanne Harris books. I've been rereading all the No1 Ladies Detective series, such a good read.
Looks like a great holiday with some smashing weather.x

JuliaB said...

Hi Lesley. Sounds like you had a FAB time! x

silverpebble said...

Oh, it's so great to see you and hear that you're chilling with books and summery things. Glad you're recouperating Mrs M xxx

Julie said...

I've recently found Cecelia Ahern too and love her writing style, and I love Joanne Harris too.

Glad the weather was kind to you on the Isle of Wight. Looks like you had great fun. Enjoy the rest of the hols! It's good to see you back in blogland. It's been very quiet for ages!

Leanne said...

Tony was reading over my shoulder and had to follow the link to Blackgang Chine to revisit his youth. He apparently went to lots of holiday camps on the Isle of Wight. Your reading list is impressive I love all things Tudor so I must look up the book "the other bolyn girl" I loved the movie.

Rachel said...

My goodness, what a lot of books you've read! Looks like you had a fab time in the Isle of Wight - I remember going there in my last year of primary school!

Leigh said...

I recently saw the movie Miss Pettigrew, loved it! The books are normally better than the flick, should I pick it up? Thanks for some great suggestions!

The kiddos look fab!!

Kitty said...

Hello You. So glad you're enjoying the holibobs - they're fab, aren't they? No school routine suits me fine. Thanks for the book recommendations. I'm a big fan of Cecilia Ahern books - I like her later ones better than that first one. Hope you and the family are having a really restful time. Take care. x

twiggypeasticks said...

Sounds like you had loads of fun, I love Joanne Harris books. (She lives not too far from us). I just read her first novel The Evil Seed while we were away. It's about vampires and most strange!! I love Chocolat and 5 quarters of the orange - think thats the correct title, but I MUST go to bed now.
Twiggy x

julie said...

sounds like you've been having a great summer hols. Your reading list is very impressive - summer reading is the best! Let's hope the sun continues to shine and we get a couple more weeks of reading, knitting and relaxing before all of the manic-ness that comes along with a new school term!