Skip to content

Field Notes, vol 10

December 15, 2013

field notes

I am studiously ignoring the passage of time since my last post, which seems to be a necessary habit this year!

I love this time of year. I love the weather and the darkness and how contemplative everything becomes. How the plants draw into themselves, and the sky is moody more often than not, and the contrast of the fairy lights outlining my window. I make myself take them down again in January, to preserve their magic.
I’m in a really lovely spot, the two months since my last field notes has seen me process and contemplate and change and grow and settle in, so that now I can simply pause and reflect, feeling good about myself and my life, and enjoy the sense of peace and joy of the season. I’ve found myself rereading more than anything: I just finished Katherine Swift’s The Morville Hours for the second time, and I think I will make it an advent tradition. It’s a perfect book for this time of year. I’ve been indulging in favourite authors, and even getting one new book in Deborah Crombie’s mystery series every time I go to the library. I start it as soon as I leave and likely as not it’s not by the next day. In the past I would have made myself wait, drawn things out from a sense of scarcity, but now I’m just revelling in a new favourite.
I have several new favourite authors this year, and I do intend to share them with you. I’ve made my peace with not being able to post about every book I read, even every 5 star book I read, this past year, but I do plan to reconstruct as well as possible my reading list (I stopped updating this summer) and include a general overview of the ones that somehow touched my soul.

I’ve also gotten back into short stories; I’m dipping at random into My Mother She Killed Me, My Father He Ate Me, edited by Kate Bernheimer, whenever I need to take a knitting break or am switching between my ‘big’ reads or just feel like a story, and it’s been wonderful. On a funny note, my niece was with me when I picked it up from the library; she loves to do the self checkout and now that she’s 7 she’s quite a fluent reader so she always reads the title. This one was on the top of my pile, and as it’s being scanned, she started to read it out loud: “My mother she KILLED me…my father…he…ATE…me?! Auntie?! WHY would you read a book like that?!” in a mix of horror and amused giggling. I started laughing too as I tried to explain. One day I hope she’ll read it for herself and find out.

All photos my own, taken over the past fortnight, you may click to enlarge.

20 Comments leave one →
  1. December 15, 2013 7:58 am

    It’s hard to post about every book you read. I keep a running tab of books I finish and the links to reviews or to goodreads if I haven’ reviewed them. That plan keeps me sane.

    Book Dilettante

  2. December 15, 2013 10:29 am

    For years I’ve posted about every book I read, even the few that I don’t read all the way to the end. However, lately, I’ve been falling behind, then more behind. I think I’ll very soon be skipping some books or doing some of those multi-book posts you used to do. There’s so much book content out there these days that I don’t feel the pressure to add quite so much to it anymore.

    • December 16, 2013 9:00 am

      CB, that’s a good point. And I’ll probably be bringing back the multi-book posts very soon! Just need to get back into the blogging habit first.

  3. December 15, 2013 12:32 pm

    I got really slack with blogging this year, too, but I did reappear in the last month or so… We will see what that means for 2014! I hardly read this year, so it is not like I have a huge back-log of things to talk about anyway! Glad to see you around, though!! I have hardly talked to you all year, so it is nice to know you are making out okay.

    • December 16, 2013 9:00 am

      Kelly! I’m sorry: I’ve hardly talked to anyone this year. :/ Maybe we’ll all suddenly become super bloggers in 2014, lol.

  4. aartichapati permalink
    December 15, 2013 2:34 pm

    I feel like in 2014, maybe I won’t post about every book I read the way I do now. (Well, generally – I used to post about books I didn’t finish, too, and this year I have not.) I think that would make it more enjoyable for me, but as I DID start the blog as my reading journal, I would like to keep track of the books I read in an organized and easy to navigate way… so who knows what i will do? :-)

    • December 16, 2013 9:00 am

      That’s always the dilemma isn’t it?! And I’m so sorry I still owe you an e-mail. Murgh.

  5. December 15, 2013 2:54 pm

    It’s good to hear from you Eva! I have been blogging so infrequently myself and I totally understand having to make peace with not doing things the way you’d hoped to. Merry Christmas to you. :)

    • December 16, 2013 9:01 am

      Merry Christmas Heather! Good to hear from you too. :D

  6. December 15, 2013 3:20 pm

    I haven’t posted about every book I’ve read for a very long time. And some days I am happy about that and sometimes I am very disappointed that I don’t have a record. I don’t know what the answer is! But I am very excited to read about some of your new favorite authors.

    • December 16, 2013 9:04 am

      Lu, me neither, not since my arthritis became dramatic and I stopped doing my multibook, thousands of words long, Sunday Salons. I read too many books anyway to do a post for each of them if I wanted to cover them all, unless all I did was book review posts. I don’t think there is an easy answer & I share your mixed feelings on it!

  7. December 15, 2013 4:01 pm

    Hi! I love it when you make posts. Also, I am excited you’re enjoying the Kate Bernheimer anthology! Is this the first time you read it? For some reason I had it in my head that you’d read it already — it’s so good. Have you read any of xo Orpheus yet? Oo, have you read the Karen Joy Fowler story in My Mother etc? I liked that one! I loved Karen Joy Fowler for being so in love with “The Six Swans” as a story — I adore that story myself, and it sticks in my mind because the ending is so crappy.

    Oh, EVA, have you read We Are All Completely Beside Ourselves yet? Read that! I think you will like it!

    • December 16, 2013 9:07 am

      I love it when you make comments!!! This is the first time I’ve read it; how did I not hear about it when it was pblished?! It is so good. After your comment I went straight to the Fowler story because I love “Six Swans” too (have you read Marillier’s retelling of it?), and I loved it. I’ve been reading the stories at random (where ever I open the book to), but now I want to read hte ones you recommended first! lol

      And did you know Bernheimer wrote three novels centered around girls & fairy tales?! My library does not have them so I’ve ILL requested the first one and have my fingers crossed. Otherwise I’ll probably buy them, because her intro was so awesome (and I’ve read her picture books with my niece and loved them).

    • December 16, 2013 9:14 am

      Oh I forgot to say I’m listening to The Penderwicks right now & it is so charming!

  8. December 15, 2013 4:40 pm

    I like what you said about enjoying the moodiness of the sky at this time of year. Good post.

  9. December 17, 2013 7:24 am

    I love what you said about this time of year. We are so much alike on that. And I love that, especially since I don’t think many people agree with us. But yeah, it’s not just the snow and cold I crave, but the darkness too. I just think this time of year holds not only a special magic all it’s own, but a very special feeling of comfort that I don’t feel during any other season. Okay, but enough of my winter adoration (it’s just so nice to have a kindred spirit!), and on to even more important stuff–I LOVE the contentment I hear in your voice!!! It just made my heart so happy! :D

    • December 17, 2013 7:38 am

      There’s never enough winter adoration!

      I’m savouring my contentment now, because moving is one of the most stressful things we can do, lol, so I’m going to need a nice big store of it in a few months. It’ll be worth it though! :)

  10. December 18, 2013 9:46 am

    I love the weather and the darkness and how contemplative everything becomes. How the plants draw into themselves, and the sky is moody more often than not, and the contrast of the fairy lights outlining my window.

    What a lovely way to characterize this time of year.

Thank you for commenting! For a long while, my health precluded me replying to everyone. Yet I missed the conversation, so I'm now making an effort to reply again. It might take a few days though, and there will be times when I simply can't. Regardless, I always read and value what you say.

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: