24 November 2008

This Week I will mostly be ...

... reading 'Jane Eyre'
... watching 'Pride and Prejudice' (the recent film version)
... knitting the sleeve still
... busy rehearsing
... nursing Chris (I've given him the very nasty stomach bug I had last week)
... hopefully getting more Christmas shopping done

22 November 2008

Having a Generous Christmas

Last year I did a post summarising the Christmas related actions on the Generous website, then said that I'd done very few of them! Oops ... Anyway, here are the things I'm doing, or hoping to do, this Christmas to make it a little more generous:

* I've bought Christmas puddings from my church, who are selling them to raise money for their preschool. So I get to enjoy super-yummy puddings and the little ones get a party!
* I still didn't get my act together to do a Christmas shoebox but I did knit three kiddie-sized scarves to go in other peoples' boxes (also beneficial as I used up loads of yarn!)
* I'm trying to buy the odd ethically sound present, which is helped by the fact I now work quite close to a Shared Earth shop which I will probably dip into on the odd lunch break. I'm still a bit uncomfortable with the idea of 'Just' gifts (i.e. presents like a goat for an African family) because you never know if the recipient will appreciate it, but I might give it a go.
* Also, to avoid needlessly buying presents that the recipient won't use (thus wasting the present, wrapping paper etc) I'm trying to shop from wish lists where I can. God bless Amazon.

I still have cards left over so won't be making my own/buying charity ones/sending e-Cards but maybe that'll be an aim for next year. And again I'm not doing the meal, but it will be at my Mum's and she will be using as many home-grown veg as possible as she's a gardening nut (which I secretly admire but tease her for). So I'm slightly more Generous this year than last - how's that for progress?

17 November 2008

This Week I will mostly be ...

... reading 'Jane Eyre'
... knitting a sleeve
... watching 'Stardust'
... Christmas shopping
... tired

10 November 2008

This Week I will mostly be ...

... reading 'Jane Eyre'
... knitting sleeve number two
... watching 'Tristan and Isolde'
... psyching myself up for five weeks of exhaustion (more rehearsals, loads to do at work, still got singing class, youth club and driving lessons - I'm going to collapse!)

07 November 2008

200-word review: 'To Kill a Mockingbird' by Harper Lee

It seems appropriate that I finished this book the same day that we heard in the UK that America had elected its first black President. If anyone doesn’t see the importance of Barack Obama’s rise to power, they should read this book to see how far the nation has come.

This book sits uncomfortably with the usual age categories prescribed to fiction; it is narrated by a little girl so on the surface appears to be a children’s book, but the material is far darker than most children would be allowed to read. So why does Harper Lee choose to tell her story through a child? The answer becomes apparent throughout the novel – in a 1930’s American town full of hypocrisy and prejudice, only the children have minds pure enough to see injustice for what it is. The narrative also lends the story a ‘morality tale’ feeling, without it becoming preachy or self-righteous.

This novel has become one of my favourites already, and one I will definitely be lending to my future children when they’re old enough to appreciate it. I really recommend it to anyone who wants to understand American history better, or who just like a good story.

**P.S. Sorry for the lack of picture, I couldn't find one to match the edition I read**

03 November 2008

This Week I will mostly be ...

... reading 'To Kill a Mockingbird'
... watching 'Tristan and Isolde' or 'Be Kind Rewind'
... knitting a sleeve and hopefully another scarf (when's the deadline again Fi?)
... wearing warm clothes
... waiting in on Friday for our kitchen floor to be fitted (we've been waiting since the end of August!)