What I’m reading: version 8.05.16

I’ve been on a non-fiction kick lately (possibly because of my dedicated consumption earlier this year of much of John Ringo’s “Ring of Fire” series…)

I’m currently most of the way through Stuffocation by James Wallman, which is a fascinating consideration of our consumerist culture: how we got here, and where we might head next. Warning: may cause much thinking…

I have just today started The 4 Hour Work Week by Tim Ferriss. Don’t start reading this one unless you’re willing to shift your paradigms! I’m only a few chapters in and have already done some hard thinking and life re-design. And I sense this is only the beginning! (And it’s a new moon this weekend – a traditionally auspicious time for new beginnings 😉 )

Other recent reads I’ve valued (there have been a few ‘yeah, nahs’ in there) include:

* Gala Darling Radical Self Love  feels to me to be aimed more at millennial gals than women of my ‘advanced’ years (i.e. I’m over 40), but is still a good read with some great tips.

* Cheryl Richardson The Art of Extreme Self Care is based around interesting and challenging monthly exercises to improve your self-care habits.

* Vint Virga The Soul of All Living Creatures is a beautifully gentle, though at times heart-rending, contemplation of life from the perspective of a vet. I highly recommend it.

* In a similar vein, Sy Montgomery’s The Soul of an Octopus will increase your appreciation and sense of wonder at the mysteries of the tentacled deeps. I read this awhile back and thoroughly enjoyed it. My new-found appreciation of octopuses remains high several months later.

I’m spotting a definite thread of self-awareness and development here…Which is very much where my head and heart are at right now: I’m wanting to transform my life and grow into myself… Watch this space!


A partial list of things I will do to avoid writing…

  • search for books about writing
  • fold socks
  • re-order my Pinterest boards
  • re-assess all of my 843 Etsy favourites
  • actually do housework
  • make cups of tea
  • sort through my pen collection
  • play Battle Cats on my phone
  • cruise Facebook and Twitter for clickbait
  • mine cobble for 3 hours on Minecraft
  • re-arrange the bookshelves
  • commit random acts of tidying
  • eat chocolate
  • play Solitaire on my phone
  • hunt for more biscuits
  • put away the clean towels
  • read tweets about writing
  • dust stuff
  • attempt to nap
  • play Forest Life on my phone
  • ponder the deep recesses of my soul (AKA gaze into space blankly)
  • take photos of clouds
  • think about taking photos of clouds
  • sort through photos I’ve already taken of clouds (and decide not to delete any)
  • read books because that’s almost the same as writing, isn’t it?
  • write a (partial) list of things I will do to avoid writing

I’m back :)


After all that, and even more weeks months of releasing and personal transformation…


I may be a touch excited about this 😉

You may have noticed some subtle changes to the blog appearance…

I’m also changing my approach to content and posting.

I’m planning to post weekly for now – probably Friday/Saturday, but that’s very -ish. We’ll see how the schedule actually unfolds.

I’ll be sharing with you:

  • my creative writing,
  • reviews of books I’ve found satisfying,
  • other things that inspire me,
  • and a range of oddments of my life

(not necessarily in that order)

I’m really looking forward to posting to you again. And I’m really looking forward to some good conversations with you – I love to hear your voice, too ❤

Let’s talk more soon 🙂


Please ignore my previous post!

Turns out my new adventure required more releasing first…

Yeah, nah, I’m not really surprised… When was life ever a straight path?!

More soon 🙂

Thanks for being patient ❤


A new adventure awaits

Hello, my friends!

I’m back – and with a new adventure beginning!

I have decided to change my focus from blogging to sharing my writing with you.

I’ve just started a whole new site over here.

I do hope you’ll come over and join me at 23 Verdant Grove.

(There may not be much to see yet, but I’m working on it!)


Releasing so as to embrace

2011-09 Moonrise2

I’m typing from my dining table, watching the golden moon rise over the hills to the east…

My son is asleep in my studio, where I usually write. His father is renovating his bedroom as I type.

I have dragged myself away from Pinterest, where I was hiding, as this is not a comfortable post to write.

❤ ❤ ❤

As I work through this process of releasing and embracing, and deciding which to do where, I have come to the uncomfortable realisation that one thing that needs to change is this blog.

It is uncomfortable because I have found myself a comfy rut with wonderful readers, so I am reluctant to change.

But in truth that comfy rut is getting uncomfortable, as I can feel words within me pushing to be written. I don’t know yet exactly what form they want to take, but I do know I want to find out…

Blogging helps ease my discomfort temporarily: having written something I can feel a pleasant glow of achievement and ignore those stirrings a little longer. But in truth my blogging has become a form of procrastination itself!

So, I have decided to release this blog a little. Do not fear – this is only a temporary release!

I need some time and space to breathe in without the strict rhythm of regular posting.

I crave time and space to explore my writing further, and to push the boundaries of what my blogging is.

I anticipate I will be away for at least a month, possibly longer. I fully intend to embrace blogging again well before the next Solstice (aka Christmas), but it may not be quite the same as before…

I ask your patience with this process, and hope that you will enjoy the end result as much as I intend to.

I will still be around on Twitter and Facebook, if you fancy a chat.

While you wait for me:

❤ you can find visual inspiration here,

❤ you can be encouraged in your quest for a simpler life here,

❤ you can explore words about creativity here, and

❤ you can find things to ponder here.

❤ ❤ ❤

I will see you again soon, my friends. Thank you for your reading 🙂

Random bits of inspiration – Eggplant

Eggplant - Solanum melongena- Purple Japanese Eggplant - circa 18th century:

limilee:    balsiek: 45881 Cotinus coggygria ‘Royal Purple’ by horticultural art on Flickr.:

Was hoping I'd get an eggplant at the CSA yesterday. They're so pretty, I want to make something eggplant.:

Fantasy by Edward Burne-Jones, 1897 Burne-Jones evolved from the aesthetic movement to be recognised across Europe as a symbolist and his visionary art bears comparison with that of Munch, Klimt and Odilon Redon, who similarly sought to create modern myths.:

Eggplant: Gokce Erenmemisoglu:

rangoli-inspired rug - plum and cream Harlequin Susa rug by Hill & Co Rugs.  £635:

Learn how to roast cubed eggplant. Healthy, less oil than frying, tasty caramelized results. Yummy finger food, or add to your favorite recipe.:

Alphonse Mucha inspired wallpaper border. Arts and Crafts era / Art Nouveau.   Love love love:

Plum Purple Eggplant at the Farmers Market, Food Photography, Deep Purple, Kitchen Art, Food Kitchen Decor on Etsy:

Door Series - Volterra | Flickr: Intercambio de fotos:

wonderful watercolor painted eggplant, in which i'll attempt to paint as well.:

Purple wall:

food art | 2 eggplants                     unknown: