Mid Week Quote: Lord Tennyson

Happy Wednesday!

So for today’s quote I have chosen Lord Tennyson. This quote is all about striving and never giving up.

 

“To strive, to seek, to find, and not to yield.”

 

Lord Tennyson

 

Happy Reading

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Be More Cat by Alison Davies (Review)

Be More Cat: Life Lessons from our feline friends by Alison Davies

About the author

Alison Davies is an author, columnist for Child Education and a freelance writer for a range of magazines including Nursery World and Mother and Baby.

Blurb

Careful observation of the behavioural quirks of our favourite felines can actually be very revealing. From living in the moment, to trusting our sixth-sense instincts, to taking cat naps, and even going feral, there are real benefits to being more cat! In Be More Cat, Alison Davies explores nine key traits we can take on board to be more cat-like and live a happier, healthier, and all around ‘feline fabulous’ existence. With practical tips and exercises, interspersed with folklore and fun facts about our kitty gurus, there’s something for everyone in this cute, fully illustrated guide!

Review

I received this book as a Christmas present off my cats, maybe they are hinting that I am too stressed and need to be more relaxed like a cat. This is essentially a mindfulness book, linking mindfulness with cats’ behaviour and how we can use things that cats do to become more relaxed.

I really enjoyed this book and it did make me giggle a lot and I must admit I read it in one sitting as I just could not put it down. The other element I really liked was that the book has nine chapters like a cat has nine lives and each chapter was somehow cat related.

The book gives helpful little exercises that should help us and are what cats do, for instance cats will stare at a wall for hours on end in our case we would meditate. There are a lot of these different exercises in the book to help us be more mindful but I must admit some do tend to repeat themselves. There are also some cat related tips in the book which are also very amusing and very factual.

The other thing I loved about this book was the wonderful little cat illustrations that run through the book. The book is also scattered with cat related quotes which I really enjoyed.

This book is basically a self help book and the exercises are all basically yoga or meditation based but linking them to cats is brilliant. I really enjoyed this book and give it 4 out 5 Dragons. The only reason it did not get the full 5 Dragons was because it was a little repetitive. Highly recommend to all cat lovers out there!

Purchase Links

Waterstones

Happy Reading!

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2020 Aims

Finally, I managed to sit down and think of my plan for 2020.

The first thing I have to consider is the extreme amount of reading my Masters is taking up. I am thoroughly enjoying it but it is taking its toll on my reading time so I have decided to take this into serious consideration on my reading plans for 2020.

My first thing I have decided to read some of my old favourites or books I have always wanted to reread and give a second chance. I started this year by starting to read Emma by Jane Austen. I first read this book in 2002 and hated it but now I can’t put it down. Also because of the amount of studying and work I am doing I always like the comfort of a reread, it is like a warm blanket that comforts and helps me through the day.

I have set my Goodreads goal as 70 books but I am not entirely sure how attainable that is. Fingers crossed I manage it. I have also decided to not take on any reading challenges this year because I just do not like being so confined to a certain list and never complete the list.

I have also decided to try and seriously curb my book buying this year as I have now got a lot of books on my TBR pile, in fact I have many piles all over my house and my parents’ so I think it is high time I got reading. So I might set myself a rule of reading 10 books before I buy one. I say might because I know I will not have the will power to resist a pretty book!

All in all 2020 is all about working hard on my Masters and getting the best mark I can and using reading as my way to relax. Fingers crossed it all goes to plan!

 

Friday Poetry: John Clare

I have been reading some of my new poetry books and I rather enjoyed this poem so thought I would share it with you all.

This poem is by John Clare (1793-1864) who was an English poet who celebrated the English countryside in his poetry.

 

To the Fox Fern

Haunter of woods, lone wilds and solitudes

Where none but feet of birds and things as wild

Doth print a foot track near, where summer’s light

Buried in boughs forgets its glare and round thy crimped leaves

Feints in a quiet dimness fit for musings

And melancholy moods, with here and there

A golden thread of sunshine stealing through

The evening shadowy leaves that seem to creep

Like leisure in the shade.

 

John Clare

 

 

Mid Week Quote: A. A. Milne

Hello!

Sorry this is a day late, but now I’m back to work I’m running severely behind with my blog. I have 4 books to review and still my 2019 wrap up and 2020 aims to do! I will get there I promise. Better organisation is needed I know.

Today’s quote is by my favourite Winnie the Pooh character, Eeyore. I love Eeyore and collect everything Eeyore.

I love this quote as it always makes me giggle, poor Eeyore always did struggle with the exuberance of Tigger.

 

Could you ask your friend to do his exercises somewhere else? I shall be having lunch directly, and don’t want it bounced on just before I begin. A trifling matter, and fussy of me, but we all have our little ways.”

 

Happy Reading

 

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New Books 6/01/2020

As promised here are my new books that I got over New Year when visiting Bath. We always visit my favourite bookshop Topping and Company because it always has some very special books and quite often signed editions. Plus when my poor husband is exhausted from following me around the bookshop and carrying the books I’ve already chosen they always offer him a mug of tea.

So here are the books I bought, I tried to be restrained so there are not as many books as I would usually go for.

Goodbye to All Cats by P. G. Woodhouse

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Shakespeare for Every Day of the Year edited by Allie Esiri

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The Tattooist of Auschwitz by Heather Morris

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Hardy 

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Drop me a comment if you have read any of these. I always love to hear your thoughts.

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Twelve Carols of Christmas: Twelfth Carol

The final carol has arrived!

There is in my opinion only one carol and that has to be We Three Kings by Edward John Hopkins (1818-1901)

This carol is a personal favourite of mine and I remember absolutely loving this carol as a child. It was also the first Christmas carol that I could play off by heart on the flute. I think I drove my parents crazy playing it over and over again.

 

We three kings of Orient are

We three kings of Orient are,

bearing gifts we traverse afar

field and fountain, moor and mountain,

following yonder star:

 

O star of wonder, star of night,

star with royal beauty bright,

westward leading, still proceeding,

guide us to thy perfect light.

 

Born a king on Bethlehem plain,

gold I bring to crown him again,

king for ever, ceasing never

over us all to reign:

 

Frankincense to offer have I,

incense owns a deity night;

prayer and praising, all men raising,

worship him, God most high:

 

Myrrh is mine, its bitter perfume

breathes a life of gathering gloom;

sorrowing, sighing, bleeding, dying,

sealed in the stone-cold tomb:

 

Glorious now behold him arise,

king and God and sacrifice.

Heaven sings: “Alleluia’;

‘Alleluia,’ the earth replies:

 

Edward John Hopkins

 

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Twelve Carols of Christmas: Eleventh Carol

It will be Epiphany soon, that means the Three Kings have finally come to their journey’s end and it also means the Christmas decorations have to come down. I always hate taking the decorations down; the house looks so bare and empty without them.

My chosen carol is an Epiphany carol. The carol is As with Gladness Men of Old by William Chatterton Dix. Dix wrote the carol on 6th January 1859 while he was ill in bed.

 

As with Gladness Men of Old

As with gladness men of old
Did the guiding star behold
As with joy they hailed its light
Leading onward, beaming bright
So, most gracious God, may we
Evermore be led to Thee

As with joyful steps they sped
To that lowly manger bed
There to bend the knee before
Thee whom heaven and earth adore
So may we with willing feet
Ever seek Thy mercy-seat

As they offered gifts most rare
At that manger rude and bare
So may we with holy joy
Pure, and free from sin’s alloy
All our costliest treasures bring
Christ, to Thee, our heavenly King

Holy Jesus, every day
Keep us in the narrow way
And, when earthly things are past
Bring our ransomed souls at last
Where they need no star to guide
Where no clouds Thy glory hide.

In the heavenly country bright
Need they no created light
Thou its light, its joy, its crown
Thou its sun, which goes not down.
There forever may we sing
Hallelujahs to our King

 

William Chatterton Dix

 

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Twelve Carols of Christmas: Tenth Carol

Today I have chosen my all time favourite carol but it has to be to the tune by Gustav Holst!

It is by my all time favourite poet Christina Rossetti.

 

In the Bleak Midwinter

In the bleak mid-winter
Frosty wind made moan;
Earth stood hard as iron,
Water like a stone;
Snow had fallen, snow on snow,
Snow on snow,
In the bleak mid-winter
Long ago.

Our God, heaven cannot hold Him
Nor earth sustain,
Heaven and earth shall flee away
When He comes to reign:
In the bleak mid-winter
A stable-place sufficed
The Lord God Almighty —
Jesus Christ.

Enough for Him, whom Cherubim
Worship night and day,
A breastful of milk
And a mangerful of hay;
Enough for Him, whom Angels
Fall down before,
The ox and ass and camel
Which adore.

Angels and Archangels
May have gathered there,
Cherubim and seraphim
Thronged the air;
But only His Mother
In her maiden bliss
Worshipped the Beloved
With a kiss.

What can I give Him,
Poor as I am? —
If I were a Shepherd
I would bring a lamb;
If I were a Wise Man
I would do my part, —
Yet what I can I give Him, —
Give my heart.

 

Christina Rossetti

 

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Friday Poetry: William Blake

It is time for the first poem of 2020!

I have really enjoyed my poetry experiment so far and so I have decided to keep going with it through 2020. I will admit I am starting to enjoy poetry! However, it is still a limited selection of poems that I am enjoying. Let’s hope that 2020 will introduce me to more poems that I love.

I have gone for a poem by William Blake. The poem is about a new born and as we are in a new born year I thought it fitted well.

 

Infant Joy

‘I have no name:

‘I am but two days old.’

What shall I call thee?

‘I am happy am,

‘Joy is my name.’

Sweet joy befall thee!

 

Pretty joy!

Sweet joy but two days old,

Sweet joy I call thee:

Thou dost smile,

I sing the while,

Sweet joy befall thee!

 

William Blake

 

 

Happy Friday!

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