Getting back on the horse.

‘I’ve been showing off, it’s a soothing feeling.’
Winifred Watson, Miss Pettigrew Lives For a Day.

I have fallen off the blogging horse and it was that line, from a book about grabbing life by the horns, ironically enough, which threw me.

It made me think about what I’m doing here. I hadn’t considered before that much of the pleasure I’ve taken from blogging has, in fact, been due to the soothing effects of showing off. I’m not certain that my garden, over-run as it is with dandelions, or my amateur attempts at cooking, however excellent my cheese toasties, are good enough to merit boasting about.

Besides that, for a stay-at-home parent the school holidays demand a different rhythm. There is the pleasure of time spent helping the Small Girl with her Country House Sticker Book, you can probably guess that book was really a little present for myself, oh, the joy of it, and playing Paper Dolls and doing things for which there is no internet link, like picking bowls of white currants together and chasing butterflies.

The summer holidays also bring the complementary penance of never having ten minutes alone which makes any type of writing an almost impossible endeavour.

What little quiet time I have carved out has been spent at work. The highlights:

Tragically tardy, here is a link to my July edition of Cooking The Books. I chose a light and frivolous book, ideal for a bit of mindless beach reading. While the title may be less than appetising, the recipe, mind you, is seriously delicious. No-one has eaten my quiche (my mother’s quiche, to be exact) without asking for the secret to it’s light and, dare I say, frivolous texture.IMG_7848

Sarah Healy tweeted that my article on her book was a ‘candid, beautiful review’ which gave me quite the thrill. A review of the review, eh? It meant a lot to me. Click here to read about The Sisters Chase.IMG_7800 (2)

To the cohort of Persephone fans out there, thank you again for inviting me to join your ranks. I contacted the wonderful women at Persephone Books and they sent me reams of information and some gorgeous photos for this article: Though she be but little, she is fierce!IMG_8079If you haven’t yet come across Persephone Books, can I plead with you take a look? They are very special.

Last week was enjoyably spent testing recipes from Valeria Necchio‘s gorgeous new cookbook, Veneto. This, truly, was a labour of love. Our happiest days of newly-wedded bliss were lived in the Veneto. Teenage Son, my eldest, was born there and cut his teeth on the region’s crusty bread. It was a shock to realise how long ago it was but also how much the food, and a glass or two of Prosecco, still has the power to bring it all back. Click here to read my review of Veneto.

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So tardy am I with this post that the time has come round to tell you about the August edition of Cooking The Books. Having taken the light and frivolous route for July, I opted this time for a classic. Both the book, Hemingway’s A Moveable Feast, and the dish, Crabe Mexicaine, are mouth-watering. Click here for a sneak preview of Eat Like Hemingway.

Still, I am circling that horse and thinking it looks a bit too high for me. If I could only do it half-heartedly, without revealing too much of my self, it would be grand. But I can’t. I’ve decided to take a short break, to enjoy the summer, fleeting as it is, and to live life for a while without forming it into sentences in my head.

Follow me on Bookwitty for book reviews, book lists, books cooked and all things bookish.
Follow me on Instagram for inevitable spillage of words and pictures.

Thanks for sticking with me,
Lynda.

22 thoughts on “Getting back on the horse.

  1. Such a lovely post, Lynda, and I’m so glad to hear you’ve just been busy living life (I had been wondering/worrying if all was well with you and yours). I’ve been quiet in the blog writing department too — busy with summer with my 12-year-old out of school, and with my 20 and 18 year-olds (and their significant others) coming and going between home and their university city. It’s far too hard right now to gather those floaty thoughts together and to string them into something coherent. (Your continual productivity with all the reading and the reviews amazes me, tbh!)

    I’m going to follow you on Bookwitty (because I do so love your reviews), and am going to check out Persephone books, although I don’t know whether they would ship to Canada (or if it would be exorbitant to have them do so). I would love to follow you on Instagram as well (I’m marianknits3 and am a complete newbie to it); I’ve missed your blogging posts and would love to stay in touch.

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    1. Thanks, Marian, and apologies for the very slow reply! We have had a very busy house all summer but I’m hoping that I’ll get back to writing when they all desert me in a couple of weeks.
      Hope you’ve had a lovely summer, Lynda.

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  2. So you horseless woman … a few remarks. First of all being as how I’m alone in a new temporary gaff and missing my husband my girlies and even for the love all all that lacks reason my mother who was given me to drive her bonkers and allow her some sort of perverse revenge these 50 something years on, being alone I this place with now blasted Wi-Fi because the French I’m so fond of exhulting have let me down with a summer holiday shrug, I’ve ordered Agatha and Veneto on the basis of your ever tantalising reviews. Second you remind me that with only a phone to work on being as how I have no Wi-Fi I could do Instagram… a new Half Baked Profile beckons. But mostly, lastly , thirdly or wherever we were …. so by clamber onto tiresome nags that don’t fit you. If the nameless charger is jogging you into exposing, sharing, blogging things that aren’t comfortable then pop him back in the orchard to chomp apples. You might have noticed I reveal little of me. It’s the shield you see … the shield I fought hard for and don’t feel like lowering too much. I found I could do that and be vaguely ok with what I write. Anything else, despite the protestations of those closest is too darn tender. I’ve a suspicion the same could be said for you. Enough! I’ve rambled far too much. Enjoy the summer or however long you are away for, even ever and just be you (as my third daughter has emblazoned on her wall …. I rather think it’s wisdom)

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  3. ‘So by’ means ‘don’t’ in Adolph Autocorrect apparently… one finger simply doesn’t suit me – for swearing or typing as it turns out. I’m such a washed up remain….

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  4. Oh I completely understand about how impossible it is to write while there are children underfoot. Impossible. I hope you have a lovely break and that you manage to read lots of fabulous books. CJ xx

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  5. What a joy to hear from you Lynda! Enjoy those sweet little ones during the holidays! The time is so brief in the big scheme of things! We will wait! Your beautiful blog posts are worth waiting for! ❤

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  6. I shall just say that I’ve never thought of your posts as ‘showing off posts’; I don’t follow/read blogs that do that. (And I’ve unfollowed a few IG-ers who definitely do that!) I love your writing, your tone of voice, your take on the world. You’ve taught me a thing or two about reading and food, and your part of the world. The fact that you’ve been brought up short by a sentence in a book means that you are conscientious, careful and aware. All good things. I hope you have the most marvellous summer with your family, cooking, reading, eating, laughing, and I look forward to reading your lovely words again when you’re ready. Sam xx PS I haven’t posted anything much for weeks and then it was just about flowers, really. I think summer is a time to regroup, reflect and relax (if you can). And, finally, there’s nothing wrong with writing about stuff you’re good at!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you, Sam, and apologies for this late reply. I think the break has done me the world of good and I’m starting to get the itch to get back down to things. I really, REALLY, do appreciate your very kind words. It is the connection with kindred spirits that brings me back here. xx

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  7. Enjoy your life; that’s the most immportant thing! It’s been over a year since I’ve posted on my WordPress blog, so I can understand. But I’ve been busy drawing and painting and posting on Instagram. Good to hear from you!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thank you. I guess we go through phases of getting more or less out of different media. WordPress is wonderful but time-hungry. I need a break every now and then to do things which I then want to write about…

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