November Notes

Next month Brona @ This Reading Life will be hosting a Rumer Godden Reading Week to mark the author’s birthday. It will take place from Saturday 4th December to Sunday 12th December 2021.

Two of her books I’m thinking of reading are ‘China Court’ and ‘The Black Narcissus.’ I especially liked her novel In This House of Brede, as did my daughter who read it when she was about 14 or 15.

Reese @ Typings had some fun with clerihews last week. Check them out and add your own. While you’re there, have a look at Mudpuddle’s contribution in the comments section! If you don’t know what a clerihew is or how to write one, this post has some good guidelines.

I’ve been trying out a few new plant based recipes – Curry Roasted Chickpeas, Non Dairy Cheese Sauce – good for using with pasta if you have someone with dairy intolerance.

On the homeschooling front:

We’ve just finished Plutarch’s life of Coriolanus and for the second time, Shakespeare’s Macbeth.

We started listening to ‘The Well Read Poem’ which is a short podcast where a poem is read and some historical and intellectual background, elements of poetry, & ‘light explication’ are given.

Paper making

We used the instructions from this website for making a mould & deckle, with some modifications, i.e. we used two identical cheap wooden picture frames and just stapled some flyscreen material firmly across one of them. We don’t have a paper shredder so we cut up a lot of paper by hand in rhythm to some stirring classical music playing in the background to take our minds off the monotony; soaked the paper in warm water until it was mushy & used a hand held kitchen blender to break it down.

The results were quite pleasing and a good surface for painting on:

Some of Miss 16’s favourite Year 11 books:

Prisoners of Geography

The Power of Geography

To Kill a Mockingbird

Fahrenheit 451

History of the Twentieth Century by Martin Gilbert – this is the abridged version that Ambleside Online schedules and I’ve noticed quite a few negative comment about it – too choppy, covers too much etc. – it is trying to look at the whole 20th Century and is a condensed version of three books. However, my two children who used it enjoyed it. I think it helps if you have read widely, even of fiction set during this time. Spy & espionage novels, WW 2 escape stories, Cold War books help fill in the gaps.

A very articulate speech by Rowan Atkinson. It’s a few years old but still applicable to us now, maybe even more so: The forerunner of the Defend Free Speech campaign was called “Reform Section 5”. This speech by Rowan Atkinson at the launch event in Parliament in 2012 should be heard by every politician, journalist and campaigner before they start calling for laws to silence those they regard as ‘extremists’.

11 thoughts on “November Notes

  1. Hello again! I was introduced to Rumer Godden by Cindy Rollins, who is part of the Literary Life Podcast/The Well Read Poem, so it seems like an unexpected joy that you have just posted about the Reading Week coming up whilst also mentioning The Well Read Poem. I have read An Episode of Sparrows which I enjoyed a lot, especially the characters of the children and how she portrayed their inner lives. I have since bought When Kingfishers Catch Fire and Breakfast with the Nikolides at Vinnies for $1 each so I can read these finally in the upcoming Rumer Godden Reading Week. Thanks for letting us know. Cate

    Liked by 1 person

    • Hi Cate, Episode of Sparrows was a lovely story.
      I think I’ll have to make a trip tp Bathurst! I’ve NEVER seen her books 2nd hand or new in bookshops & have had to buy them online. $1 each! How good is that!
      Our Lifeline Bookshops are open now and we scored a few books recently from random authors but it was slim pickings & not a lot of stock. Understandable as no one was able to donate books during lockdown.
      Do you have a blog or do you just read and enjoy?


      • Hi Carol, (it’s Carol, yes? I’m having a slight brain fog day.)

        Bsthurst has a good but small second hand book shop but for some reason, the op shops often have real gems on their shelves. I always squeal out loud and then get embarrassed. I got the name of The Gift of Reading to start a blog but haven’t got there yet, I’ve been too busy helping to care for our 3 year old granddaughter. She’s now living with her Mum, so next year looks possible. I do keep thinking that no one will probably read it!

        Liked by 1 person

  2. Thanks for the shout out! And should anybody else be reading this and go look at the clerihews, be sure to scroll all the way down & read Carol’s–they’re great fun!

    I’m planning on In This House of Brede myself for Brona’s reading week.

    Liked by 1 person

  3. tx for the mention… i liked yours better than mine, tho… i’ve never read Godden/must give him a try some time… the paper making looks interesting


  4. Censorship has become a big issue here in my state. Politicians have taken to making lists of books that need to be removed from libraries, and parents are going before school boards requesting that books be removed from the curriculum and/or libraries. It’s shocking to me. Thank you for sharing this excellent video.


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