Friday, September 23, 2011

The Color of Water

This book was sent to me by a friend after she had read it. I was interested because of the review she gave it.
I started it quite a while ago and then put it down reading a few other books. I picked it up again and re read from the beginning.

It’s an interesting read.
James McBride

This book is a sort of biography/autobiography of James McBride and his mother Ruth who is a Polish Jew who immigrated with her family from Poland to America when she was two. She leaves her family when it all gets too much (Jewish upbringing) and ends up marrying a Negro and is widowed then marries another Negro. Between the two husbands there are 12 children (one, the writer of the book) and it reveals the lengths she went to give her children the best they could have, on the little they had.

Ruth McBride Jordan

  An inspiring story of love and a faith in God.
 When this edition was published Ruth was still alive but I   have since read she died in January 2010

 Ruth McBride Jordan, whose life story was celebrated by her   son in a best-selling book, "The Color of Water," has died.   
  She was 88 and had been in failing health. 

 There is an interesting article in the New York Times that   sums up her life and the books story.

Monday, September 19, 2011

Putaruru College - The Taming of the Shrew - Act II, Scene I

The other night Katrina and I watched the movie Ten Things I Hate About You.
Harry told me it was “Katrina’s movie” as the plot was taken from the Shakespeare play “The Taming of the Shrew”.
I hadn’t realised that before and so it took on a different view to me.

Katrina has recently had huge success in her self-directed excerpt from the play, The Taming of the Shrew; Act 11, Scene 1.

This play won first place in the region for a 5 minute entry in the University of Otago Sheilah Winn Shakespeare Competition.

Katrina, Jessie and David sorting mats for the play

At Queen’s Birthday weekend (the first weekend in June – New Zealand), Katrina and about a dozen other students and three teachers travelled to Wellington for the competition.

To our joy and Katrina’s excellent talent they won the: Tony Wolf Award for Outstanding Stage Combat 

Tony Wolf Award for Outstanding Stage Combat

Opening moment

Monday, September 12, 2011

My Version of Julie & Julia

I don't know if you have read or seen the story Julie  Julia (In the movie Meryl Streep is Julia Child and Amy Adams is Julie Powell) but it is the true story of Julie and how she wants to cook all 524 recipes from Julia Childs cook book, "Mastering the Art of French Cooking", in 365 Days. She started a blog to share her experiences. The year was hard on her marriage and Julia Child found out about it and was not impressed, but yes she succeeded much to her blog fans delight.

I read the book a couple of years ago and saw the movie, but as is in a lot of cases the movie missed out a lot of good parts, like the day all the power went off in New York but her friends came around to her place knowing she would be cooking up a recipe. 

In the weekend I started to do some clean out and decuttering in the kitchen. I sorted recipe books and found all the recipes I have torn out of magazines and newspapers and ones I have jotted down while watching a TV cooking show.

Part of me said I should just toss them all in the fire as I could search the internet if I needed a recipe for something, but the thing was - I had collected those recipes for reason.

When I read the book Julie & Julia I had wanted to do the same thing but couldn't choose a cookbook to go through so never started.

So I decided this is what I would do. They are all in a large plastic bag and I will choose a recipe and try to cook one a day and then save it or biff it depending on whether it is a recipe I think I will ever use again.

I've already pulled out a few and they all seemed to have something extra I don't have, whether it be a grocery item or something that is not in season yet. I will start it as soon as I have been shopping and start a new section of this blog for you to follow if you are interested but also to show the recipes as I go along.

I'm hoping that I can start a new tab at the top of my blog, but still on this page, that you can click on to follow along.

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Dawn's Prelude

Dawn's Prelude is the first book in a series of three , The Song of Alaska,  written by Tracie Peterson.

Newly widowed Lydia Sellers discovers that through an unforeseen fluke, she is the sole recipient of her husband's fortune. But instead of granting her security, it only causes strife as her adult stepchildren battle to regain the inheritance for themselves. Lydia, longing to put the memories of a painful marriage behind her, determines to travel to Alaska to join her aunt.
Lydia's arrival in Sitka, however, brings two things she didn't expect. One is the acquaintance of Kjell Bjorklund, the handsome owner of the sawmill. Second is the discovery that she is pregnant with her dead husband's child. What will this mean for her budding relationship with Kjell? And to what lengths will her stepchildren go to reclaim their father's fortune? Lydia soon finds her life--and that of her child's--on the line.

Tracie Peterson  is a bestselling author who writes in both historical and contemporary genres. Her novels reveal her love for research as well as her strong desire to develop emotionally meaningful characters and stories for her readers. Tracie and her family live in Montana.

I enjoyed the easy reading of this book and it didn't take long. I did feel it lacked a lot of detail and would jump from a moment of suspense to after it, so you knew the result quickly but after reading that passage, I felt it could have been drawn out a bit to make it more 'gripping'.

I am keen to read the other three in the series, all of which my daughter has.

Saturday, September 10, 2011

Coming Through

I know it’s been awhile since I have posted on my blog but life has thrown me a bit of a curve ball and I shied away from a lot of things I was normally doing except the essentials. 

Over the last few years I have suffered chest pains that I thought were anxiety attacks. While discussing a few other health issues, that I won’t go into now, my doctor had some tests done and I was diagnosed with a heart disease. I was given lots of tablets to take and a spray for the pain. I was also booked in for an angiogram. 

One evening a couple of weeks ago I had stabbing pains and was rushed to the hospital in the ambulance, only to discover, after an emergency angiogram, that there was nothing wrong with my heart and so I am now awaiting to find out what is causing the pain.

What relief to no longer have to be on all the medication and I feel that a weight like a heavy back pack has been taken off me.

The medication had slowed me down, as I was told it might, but being down emotionally as well, I didn’t realise how much until I was able to stop the medication. Feeling almost incapable like this I just didn’t feel like doing anything; why bother if I was at risk of having a heart attack.

But through all this time I have had an epiphany. It wasn’t a sudden revelation, but more like the sun burning through on a foggy morning.

I am on facebook and have become addicted to some of the games. I realise it is a desire, not so much to beat others, but to always do better myself. But this fixation was stealing my life away and the things I have loved to do.

Slowly I am weaning myself off and am still in the process of breaking away. But I am letting the things around me become a part of who I am and my day again.

My office/craft room is tidy; I have gone back to some of my Flylady routines; the gardens are being weeded and books are exciting me again.

The reality is if my life was to be cut short then these were the important things that would really be missed not the silly games on facebook.

It’s a slow but steady work in progress but like the prodigal son I am feeling that my Father is throwing a party for me as I come back to the woman He created me to be.