Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Best Laid Plans of Mice and Mothers

Well, we left for Colorado last week and got about 100 miles from home then turned around and came back. The extremely adorable Chloe got sick -- poor Little. Anyway, she's fine now (which of course is all that matters), so we think maybe she was just car sick. As I've said before, I love being home, so we really weren't all that devastated about not getting to go -- in spite of the fact that we didn't get to escape to the lovely cool mountains and it has continued to be hot as blue blazes here. We did finally get some rain though, and the temps have stayed below 100 degrees for the last week or so.

One of the silver linings to the canceled trip cloud, is that we were here for the annual Friends of the Library book sale -- would have missed it otherwise. We are a family of book lovers -- to put it mildly. My daughter, Jess, and I were able to go the first night (you must pay a $10 'cover charge' to get in the first night -- worth it!).  You should have seen us -- really kids in a candy store. We pretty much know each other's taste in books and favorite authors, so we descended on the many many tables and boxes full of books like Sherman on Atlanta. From time to time, I could hear gasps and "Oh, look!" coming from her direction as she uncovered one great treasure after another (Elizabeth Goudge, Kathleen Norris, etc.).

Just look at all those books. . . heaven.

 
We ended up with over a hundred books between us. Is that greedy? Here are my two boxes.

 

And just look at the cookbooks (below). Years ago, and I mean years ago back in the early 80's, I would go to the library and copy recipes from the Helen Corbitt Collection you see there because I couldn't afford to buy it. This is a great cookbook -- lots of wonderful recipes -- the best chicken liver pate ever, for one. I'll share it with you later. Many years ago, when Helen Corbitt was the food manager at the Driskill Hotel (and later the tony Headliner's Club) in Austin, Texas, my Aunt Ruth worked with her. Ruth was manager of the Headliner's Club at the time. I remember Ruth telling me once that Helen was a great cook, but not a very nice person -- a little behind the scenes tension, I think. Anyway, Helen was also food manager for Neiman Marcus in Dallas for years, and many of her recipes are still served in the Zodiac Room there.
In the 60's, both my mother and Aunt Ruth had the I Hate to Cook Book by Peg Bracken. It's funny, and there are some not so bad recipes in it as well. I already had a copy but got this one for Jess.

 

Don't know if you can see the Kathleen Thompson Norris book below (fourth from the bottom). She's another of our favorites. She is an early 20th century American author whose books are almost all based in the San Francisco bay area which I love. You get a wonderfully rich glimpse of that beautiful part of the world before it became the overpopulated modern urban area it is today. Her stories are wonderful as well. I accidentally stumbled across a book of hers in the library many years ago -- just picked it up because I liked the title, "The Sea Gull". I've been collecting her work ever since.

 

I found several Mary Stewarts too. I have loved her books since I was in Jr. High School. Remember "The Moonspinners" with Haley Mills -- based on the Mary Stewart novel. And if you've never read D.E. Stevenson, please try reading one of her books. They're so sweet -- from early to middle 20th century England -- lovely.

 
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We also looked for craft books, of course, but didn't find all that many. Here are ones I found. The Beatrix Potter Needlepoint Book is just beautiful, but I don't know if I've got the gumption to follow through on the rather complicated designs.

 

We found some good children's books too. Jess got several Little House on the Prairie books. Have you ever seen the movie based on "Where the Lilies Bloom"? I haven't seen it since it came out in 70's, but I remember loving it. I think I'll try to find it on Amazon or Netflix.

 

Well, there seem to be a lot of 'back in day' and 'many years ago' references today -- didn't intend to stroll down memory lane so much, but that's part of what books do, I guess -- take us to new places and sometimes to revisit remembered places?

1 comment:

moonlight_fairy said...

I love this post, in fact I love this blog!! It is really coming together so well.

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