Village Life in America by Caroline Cowles Richards

This was a charming read. The diary of a young girl growing up on the eve of the Civil War and beyond in Canandaigua, New York. .

.

“Monday Morning, April 10, 1865—‘whether I am in the body, or out of the body, I know not, but one thing I know, Lee has surrendered! and all the people seem crazy in consequence. The bells are ringing, boys and girls, men and women are running through the streets wild with excitement; the flags are flying, one from the top of our church, and such a “hurrah boys” generally, I never dreamed of. We were quietly eating our breakfast this morning about 7 o’clock, when our church bell commenced to ring, then the Methodist bell, and now all the bells in town are ringing. Mr. Noah T. Clarke ran by, all excitement, and I don’t believe he knows where he is. No school today. I saw Capt. Aldrich passing, so I rushed to the window and he waved his hat. I raised the window and asked him what was the matter? He came to the front door where I met him and he almost shook my hand off and said, “The war is over. We have Lee’s signature, with his own name signed.”

Contemplative Vision by Juliet Benner

Contemplative Vision by Juliet Benner is a book about contemplating religious art with prayer in mind and using it to expand our prayer life by gazing at the face of God through it, seeing His face and meditating about the art’s purpose/story, and the artist’s time creating it. The book discusses using art as a purpose to expand our faith and awe. For instance, the artists who create icons of Christ meditate on his face for hours while painting him. Just beautiful! .

The First Book of Chronicles

These are my own contemplative thoughts. You might disagree and that’s OK!

.

.

“…Go and count the Israelites from Beersheba to Dan. Then report back to me so I may know how many there are.” —1 Chronicles 21:2

.

.

Most of the first part of Chronicles is a genealogical list, which I skipped in my reading. But then the book goes on to speak of David’s

rule as king. As king, David did the best he could, but like all humans he was not perfect. He’s written some of the most beautiful psalms (poems & songs) deticated to God,

because he truly felt he and God were in it together, he truly felt God’s presence in his life and it overwhelmed and inspired him. So the fact that he asks for his troops to be counted so he can measure his army’s strength is very unlike him. In this action he separates himself from God and is relying only on numbers, & on his own strength and pride. The simple definition of ‘sin’ is an act which separates us from God. So David was wrong to count the strength of his men, when he knew (and it had been proven to him many times) that God had his back, that God was with him. By this he pushed God away, thus separating himself from God, thus committing a ‘sin’. But don’t worry, our ‘sins’ are not counted by God. I think this shows that fact. That neither we should count against God, nor should we think God is counting against us. We simply try to keep our faith, and pray God will help us keep our faith in Him. We must hold fast to the sleeve of God’s robe or to God’s hand like a child who does not want to be lost in a world crowded with trivialities. In David’s case he said he was sorry to God and went on his merry way, hand in hand with Him (or if you like, Her) after this, and left with us his beautiful and inspiring dedications to his One & Only True Love.

.

.

.

#bibleverse #bible #biblejournaling #church #episcopal #episcopalchurch #readersofinstagram #writersofinstagram #catholic #christ #god #jesuschrist #bookstagram #bibliophile #bookphotography

Another Hilarious Tidbit from the Letters of Horace Walpole

One more tidbit… possibly more as these letters are hilarious.

To his best friend, Sir Horace Mann, who apparently had not responded to his letters for two weeks so Walpole became “angry” and wrote that he won’t continue to give news reports to Mann, because “he’s not a newspaper.” And he repeatedly told his friend that he won’t update him on personal gossip…

.

.

“The Duke is expected over immediately;I don’t know if to stay, or why he comes—I mean, I do know, but am angry, and will not tell.

I have seen Sir James Grey, who speaks of you with great affection, and recommends himself extremely to me by it, when I am not angry with you; but I cannot possibly be reconciled till I have finished this letter, for I have nothing but this quarrel to talk of, and I think I have worn that out—so adieu! You odious, shocking, abominable monster! 🤣 —Horace Walpole July 14th, 1748

Seasons of Grace by Leslie Tentler

Possibly the driest book I’ve ever tried to read, but I feel like this might just change my thinking somehow or maybe even my life. Why do I think this? I don’t know. It was a recommendation from one of the archivists at the Archdiocese. I trust this guy’s opinion, though I think he may be on a different level. When I first met him he was translating an 18th century journal from Latin to English. 😬

I’m going to give it a try and see what I learn—probably more than I’d ever want to know! I was so desperate for it I ordered it from the lending library program! 🤷‍♀️ Hey, maybe when I finish I’ll pick up some lessons in Latin!

Moby Dick by Herman Melville

“Call me Ishmael.” .

.

.

This beautiful illustrated copy of Moby Dick is from the 1930’s can you tell? The Art Deco print gives it away. I have not read it yet, but plan to soon—with gloves on. Because I’m sure this copy is worth something. I love Melville and whale tales/fishing tales. They are usually my favorite stories, full of adventure and curiosity. .

Sissinghurst by Vita Sackville-West and Sarah Raven

The sudden warm weather in Michigan has got me thinking of the garden. A couple years ago I wrote a garden blog every week dedicated to the garden writings of Vita Sackville-West. Some days I miss her writings, her wonderful way of describing “ordinary” flowers and plants like human beings. She knew them all so well—more so than humans actually which made her a bit cold when it came to her human relationships. Her friend, lover and muse, Virginia Woolf was an expert on people and enjoyed exploring the human condition. Thus being opposites, they made a nice pair. I think I have collected the entirety of Vita’s garden works. Her books helped me get through some of the most cold & dark winters of my life, she kept me alive and green. Anyone needing a little lift would be right to pick up something of hers. This book gives a great introductory view of Vita’s talented green thumb.

.

.

.

#books #bookstagramer #garden #gardening #gardeningtips #flowers #winter #spring #readersofinstagram #reading #writersofinstagram #writersofinstagram #blogger #bookblogger #booklover #bookshelf #bookgeek #virginiawoolf #sissinghurst #british

The Contemplative Rosary with St. John Paul II & St. Teresa of Avila

The Contemplative Rosary with St. John Paul II and St. Teresa of Avila is more of a workbook than I would have liked. I have read it over and have prayed the Glorious Mysteries using it as my guide today. Though I was hoping for more a reflective experience from these two Saints on praying the rosary, I think this book is helpful. However, I began my own reflections on it. Today I journaled my experience and let me tell you, when I reflected after each decade the impact of it as almost meditation on both my mind and body, I realized many things. Maybe I’ll type it all out for those of you interested. I was really surprised at the beauty of the experience because praying the rosary can sometimes be like a chore, and I never think I’m going to get anything out of it…until today when I used this book. So maybe it is a useful book after all.

The History of Fly Fishing by Ian Whitelaw

Life is filled with wonder and enchantment when we’re not worried about the fires in Australia. Living life to its fullest means exploring that which enchants us or excites our curiosity. For me that is fly fishing. I’ve never done it but for a long time I’ve wanted to learn this art, not only fishing with flies but learning how to tie them myself(make them). I feel the intricacy of this art would appeal to my ready hands. So through research I found this book and thought I’d start here. The History of Fly-Fishing In Fifty Flies by Ian Whitelaw gives examples of different rivers around the world and which flies are best for these rivers based on the insects and animals that live in the area. I can’t wait to dive into this book and learn more!

.

.

.

#bookstagram #flyfishing #flyfishinglife #fishing #troutfishing #history #bibliophile #readersofinstagram #read #writersofinstagram #writer #curiosity #inspiration #rivers #booklover #booknerd #bookgeek