Monday, April 26, 2010

John & Kate Plus Houseguests, Episode 1

My mom came to visit us for a week. Somehow, she managed to land the day before they closed Europe, and then she left on her scheduled flight the day they reopened everything. We'd had a small amount of excitement when they cancelled her flight the day before, but they reinstated it a few hours later and off she went. 

True to form, we did some Ninja Gardening, had lots of yummy pub lunches, hung out with the inlaws and the sm. boy, rang bells (well, I rang, Mom read and "Flip"-ped, went on walks and ate curry. We had one dining fail - we tried a new restaurant in Stowmarket that produced what is definitely in the top 5 worst meals I've ever eaten. Maybe they'll get better, so I'm not going to leave a trail of hate on the interwebs. If you're testing out a new restaurant in Stow, though, email me. And WATCH OUT.

Much better were these flowers (thank you SLR).

 And this hodgepodge street in Norwich:

 And standing outside Orford church:

And the extremely yummy Butley Orford Oysterage. Eat there. Even though it's in the boonies.

While it's tough to live 3,500 miles away from my parents, we Skype all the time and it's really fun to have a week of concentrated MomAndKate time, which I imagine we wouldn't have if we lived around the corner from each other.

Monday, April 12, 2010

Review: The Magician's Elephant

Kristin Cashore recommended The Magician's Elephant, by Kate DeCamillo, on her blog. Yeah, I know. If Cashore tells the interwebs to read a book, I'm going to read it.

In fairness, I didn't LOVE Knowledge of Angels, but I agree with her that it was riveting.

I did, however, love The Magician's Elephant.

It is, unsurprisingly, about a Magician and an Elephant. But it's mostly about a small boy, and the things that happen when he dares to hope. It's relatively short, but every word and every sentence seemed somehow exactly right. In the same way that Mozart sounds right, and vaguely inevitable.

The copy I had from the library was hardbound, and I don't know enough about paper to really weigh in on it, but the paper seemed sort of onion-skin-y, and the shapes of the (gorgeous) font bled through to the following and previous pages.

If you haven't read it, you should. It'll take you an hour or two, at most. But savour it. (Especially you, C.)

And now for something completely different (although still from KC): Sigrid Undset's Kristin Lavransdatter. I'm on volume 1 of 3. It's translated from the Norwegian, the library copy that I have was printed in 1969, it takes place in 14th Century Norway, and it's riveting. Never heard of the book or the author before, but I'm glad I have now!

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Where to?

I took this photo a few weeks ago and haven't had a reason to post it. Except that I like it. So now it's posted!

Saturday, April 10, 2010

And then we watched some movies

In the last week, I've caught up on all the kids' movies that I'd wanted to see.

We've watched:

How to Train Your Dragon (cute, and fun, but not as amazing as the interwebs would have you believe)
Eragon (not as terrible as the interwebs would have you believe)
Flushed Away (hilarious - how did I miss it?)
Cloudy With A Chance Of Meatballs (very cute, with a great Al Roker cameo)

We also watched the new Matt Smith Doctor Who. Great writing and a super-spunky sidekick. And even though he's NOT David Tennant, I think Matt Smith can stay. Which is good, because I'm pretty sure that the BBC have already decided that.

I bought a pillow form last weekend - my plan is to make a quilted pillow for the couch, inspired by this beautiful (and sold out) one made by Manda of TreeFall. There are also some really inspiring ones on flickr, here. Especially this one

I think some of these might make an appearance...

Oh, and Moose made me post this one. He likes the quilt. A lot.

Saturday, April 3, 2010

The End (of the quilt and of Doctor David Tennant)

Last night we watched the final David Tennant Doctor Who episodes. I'd missed them at Christmas when they originally aired, and the iPlayer download that I had was corrupted. NOOOOOO!

As much as I want D.T. and Catherine Tate to be "The Doctor and Donna" forever, I thought the last episode was really good. A little nostalgia, a lot of running, and some silly jokes. And then a regeneration. 11th Doctor? Not sure how I feel about him yet. The first episode of the newly Tennant-less Doctor Who is tonight...we'll see how it goes.

While we were watching, I finished binding my quilt. I love how it turned out. There are some really gorgeous ones in the Flickr pool - go check them out!

I love how bright it is - and since I finished it midway through the tv-watching last night, I can also vouch for the fact that it's soft and reasonably warm.

We're having a mad weather-day today - it's either pouring or bright sunshine and nothing in between. I don't think I'm brave enough to hang the washing out on the line but I may break out the e-cloth and wash some windows. Spring!!