Archive for January 29th, 2008

The Morning Gift by Eva Ibbotson

Tuesday, January 29th, 2008

Today I wasn’t feeling well, so, since it was a Snow Day, I indulged in a rare treat: I retreated to bed with a good book after the morning chores were done. I spent much of the day reading The Morning Gift by Eva Ibbotson.


The book is set in Austria and in England, in the years just prior to WWII, is historical fiction/drama/romance, and is loosely autobiographical. I won’t tell you the story, but will tell you:

  • The book reminded me, in many ways of Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice. Like Austen, Ibbotson doesn’t spell out everything for the reader. Rather, she paints a detailed picture of each character, and then allows the reader to form an opinion of them.
  • The author’s vocabulary, sentence structure, attention to detail, and historical detail are amazing. I used to fancy that I have a good vocabulary, but I am humbled. 🙂
  • I am sad the book is over. Having peeked into the many lives Ibbotson described, I long to know more about these people.

Because I enjoyed The Morning Gift so much, I then read an interview of the author posted at

To those of you bloggers who aspire to write a book, another interesting fact is that Eva Ibbotson was forty years old before she began her prolific, award-winning career as an author.

Snow Day!

Tuesday, January 29th, 2008

We finally got our snow day, People!

It was touch-and-go this morning, since the school web site showed that school would be delayed for two hours (not closed) up until almost time to leave for school. It’s 17 or 18°F (has been since I got up at 5a.m.) here, and it’s supposed to keep snowing all day. We are inordinately happy about this, I because I won’t have to drive on the slippery roads and I’m feeling in need of extra rest, and the children because a SNOW DAY means cozy games and books to read by the wood stove all day long.

Here’s a picture taken yesterday of Debra standing on the frozen goldfish pond which Rick made out of a planter box. Don’t ask me how she can stand to be outside with bare feet (shiver!):



This is how the back porch area looked earlier this morning. The pond is off to the left. It’s difficult to see from this angle.


This is a view of the west side of the house. Guess some snow got on the camera as Rick was taking these pics.


Rick stood out in the back yard to take this shot. Do you see the skinny pole on top of the house? That’s where Rick mounted our Clearw’re receiver so we can have (relatively) fast internet connection way out here in the boonies. The Clearw’re rep said that, really, he’s surprised our reception is as good as it is, since we’re just outside the area they service. 😛