Monday, November 30, 2009

Project Life

I've been a long-time scrapbooker, for lack of a better term, and have spent countless hours creating albums and "scrapbooks" for my family. Baby books, school years, holiday celebrations,vacations, everyday living....I just love taking photos of the people and memories that make up my life. I take so many pictures, though, that it can be quite a challenge to stay organized and current with all my albums.

Last year, I decided to change from traditional scrapbooking (which requires a good bit of time, effort, and creativity) to a faster, simplified way of organizing my memories. I purchased 12"X12" 3-ring scrapbook albums and filled them with divided sheet protectors that hold either vertical or horizontal 4"X6" pictures. There is place to slip in a journaling card which makes the process quick and easy.

Now, Becky Higgins, a fabulous scrapbooker from Creating Keepsakes magazine, has created a beautiful kit called Project Life. Everything, and I mean everything, is done for you. All you do is add your pictures and jot down your details. It is most definitely on my gift-giving list this Christmas for all my friends and family members who have lamented that they just don't have the time or desire to get involved with traditional scrapbooking but love organized family photos and memories. (Naturally, I'm getting one for myself, as well.) You can visit Becky Higgins at her blog by clicking here.

Friday, November 27, 2009

Feeling Thankful

So much to be thankful for as November comes to an end....

l. I'm thankful the turkey and all the side dishes were delicious and shared with a house full of hungry family members; while I'll never be Martha Stewart, I do enjoy holiday cooking and large scale entertaining with my brothers and sister and their families and my extended family.

2. Celebrated another wedding anniversary this month and revisited the cathedral as we do each year on our anniversary.

3. I'm really thankful for the "undelete this blog" button! After believing it was necessary to remove my blog, I've reconsidered and will continue as usual. I missed my blog friends too much, so I'm hoping they'll come back and visit.

Here's hoping that your November was filled with many good things and that your December will be filled with the joys of the season!

Monday, November 9, 2009

Good News/Bad News

First, the good news: the Saints are 8-0. 'Nuf said.

Now, the bad: Hurricane Ida is on its way. No immediate danger, but for those who are still not completely back on their feet from 2005, it's chilling. Got calls last evening from the emergency systems in the kids' schools that they are closed for today for safety reasons, as is most of the Gulf Coast. Please send some good thoughts our way for everyone to stay safe in the next two days. Much appreciated. ;)

Monday, November 2, 2009

What Jane Austen Ate and Charles Dickens Knew by Daniel Pool

What is your Victorian literature IQ? Ready to take a little quiz just for fun? Here we go!

l. What do Ombre, Loo, Pope Joan, and Piquet have in common?

2. Where would you likely find an epergne in a Victorian home?
a. in the bedroom
b. in the dining room
c. in the study

3. Where would you live if you had the most fashionable address in Victorian London?
a. St. Giles
b. Covent Garden
c. Mayfair

4. If someone called you a tosspot, it meant
a. you are tart-tongued and sassy
b. you drank too much
c. you are the lowest housemaid

5. Most ladies' mourning clothes were made from what fabric?
a. silk
b. velvet
c. bombazine

6. True or False:
In going up a flight of stairs, the gentleman always precedes the lady.

7. True or False:
It is inappropriate for a lady to wear pearls or diamonds in the morning.

8. True or False:
A lady is always introduced to a gentleman -- never the other way around.

9. Can you name famous homes in literature that contains the following
words? grange, hall, house, park

l0. What is the proper way to address....
the king or queen?
the monarch's spouse, children, siblings?
nephews, nieces, and cousins of the sovereign?


So, how well did you do? Here are the answers:

1. They are all card games.
2. An epergne was a gaudy table decoration to hold food or flowers on a dining table.
3. Park Lane, the most coveted address, was in fashionable and wealthy Mayfair.
4. b - you drink too much
5. c - bombazine because it did not shine
6. True
7. True
8. False -- A genleman is always introduced to the lady; it is considered an honor to be introduced to the lady.
9. Thrushcross Grange in Wuthering Heights; Thornfield Hall in Jane Eyre; Netherfield House in Pride and Prejudice; Mansfield Park
10. Your Majesty; Your Royal Highness; Your Highness

This is a fun, entertaining social history for anyone who enjoys reading the works of Dickens, the Brontes, Austen, and other nineteenth-century novelists, or for anyone who is interested in nineteenth-century English life.

I purchased this reference book as part of the Everything Austen challenge, and it really does enrich the reading experience of Victorian-era novels. It is very readable and filled with fun and interesting aspects of everyday matters such as dinner parties, country house visiting, sex and marriage, social etiquette, society and the "season," medicine and disease, death and mourning, transportation, the taxonomy of maids, currency, holidays, and of host of other curious topics. It contains a helpful glossary of terms and a useful bibliography for further exploration. Lots of fun!

Title: What Jane Austen Ate and Charles Dickens Knew: From Fox-Hunting to Whist--the Facts of Daily Life in 19th Century England
Author: Daniel Pool
genre: nonfiction
416 pages
Simon and Schuster, Inc.

Favorite Period Dramas

Mount TBR

Joanne's to-read book montage

On a Highland Shore
A Light on the Veranda
The Queen's Vow: A Novel Of Isabella Of Castile
The Edwardians
Maisie Dobbs
Howards End
Lady's Maid
Instruments Of Darkness
When Maidens Mourn
Where Shadows Dance
What Remains of Heaven
Where Serpents Sleep
Why Mermaids Sing
When Gods Die
Before Ever After
The Sugar Queen
Garden Spells
After the Night

Joanne's favorite books »