Cough, cough

One of my lovely co-workers brought in some hideous bug last Tuesday that tapped her out for the rest of the week.  I felt it Thursday.  Went to a staff meeting on Friday feeling so awful that I forgot to put on shoes–I drove two hours without realizing I was still in my slippers.  My boss sent me home early.  Called off my Saturday overtime in favor of going to a doctor for a prescription.  Hooray drugs!  I feel less dead now.

I am using this time to do some light reading–book 1 of Terry Pratchett’s Discworld series.  I am totally loving it!  It is funny and imaginative and absolutely everything I want in a book when I am sick…

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Spy. Be amused!

Hulu developed this little gem:  a clueless divorced dad stumbles into a job as a spy while having to deal with a snarky (but very smart) son.  It is currently on its second season and I love it.  You can find the series here.

It all starts with this one:

The Classics Club: Northanger Abbey

This is an absolute must read!  I laughed all the way through.

Catherine Morland is a young girl with a very active imagination who is taken to Bath by friends of the family.  She meets all kinds of new people and, being a sheltered girl, doesn’t have any experience in dealing with fly-by-night friends or pushy would-be-suitors.  And, Mrs. Allen–the lady whom she is accompanying–really doesn’t offer guidance as she is more concerned with her own self and pleasure; however, Mr. Allen–when he makes any appearance at all–generally has his head screwed on tight.

Isabella Thorpe is a shallow young girl who befriends Catherine and drags her about from place to place so she (Isabella) can be admired.  First she sets after James Morland, Catherine’s elder brother, becomes engaged and then dumps him when she lands the stronger financial candidate, Captain Tilney, the heir and oldest Tilney sibling–but is eventually dumped by him.

John Thorpe, Isabella’s brother, is a school friend of James Morland.  The arrogant Thorpe is very heavy-handed about separating Catherine from anyone but himself; he changes her plans without her consent several times.

Henry Tilney is the one young person who talks sense to Catherine most of the time.  She actually develops feelings for him and wants to know him better (when not being thwarted by circumstance or Thorpe).

Eleanor Tilney, Henry’s sister, becomes a friend to Catherine.  She is kind and a bit shy.

General Tilney is quite overbearing to his children and exhibits many of the same characteristics of John Thorpe.  He is at the center of the dramas at the end of the book–and only one turns out to be an actual problem that didn’t stem from Catherine’s wild imagination.

Is this a typical Austen romance?  Yes, but we are treated to every wild imagining generated out of gothic tales which cause the “typical” to be hidden.  The imagination can easily swamp reality for Catherine–and the reader.

Will I read this again?  Absolutely!

I wish I had read this novel when I was fifteen or sixteen:  I adored horror novels–being scared was fun.  But, because of this, I still think twice (even after all these years) about walking over storm drains.  This novel might have made me take a look at my need for excitement and try to find an alternative path for it.  I probably wouldn’t have stopped reading horror novels, but I might have found something else to read in between to give myself a break!

  • Started:  end of August
  • Finished:  20 September, 2012

Sheep pointillism

Ok.  Normally my friends send me stupid stuff over email, but this one is quite creative.  These sheep farmers have had a few too many nights in a pub planning all this, but darn if the results weren’t awesome.

I can’t imagine how many days it took to get this all put together!

Here’s the video for sheeplight.

Peonies!

I absolutely adore peonies–they are so beautiful.  I would have them everywhere if it weren’t for the ants.  That was the one thing my mother impressed on me about peonies:  plant them away from the house because of the ants.

Here are the two bushes of white peonies I currently have:

And here are two gorgeous red peonies I just bought:

I don’t think they’ll bloom this year, but they will be stunning next spring.  I am very excited!

Ok.  I am off to plant some salvia and speedwell.  But to tide you over…have a bearded iris: