Imagine a morning in late November, a coming of winter morning more that twenty years ago. Consider the kitchen of a spreading old house in a country town. a great black stove is it's main feature, but there is also a big round table and a fireplace with two rocking chairs placed in front of it. just today the fireplace commenced it's seasonal roar.A woman with shorn white hair is standing at the kitchen window. She is wearing tennis shoes and a shapeless gray sweater over a summery calico dress. She is small and sprightly, like a bantam hen, but, due to a long youthful illness, her shoulders are pitifully hunched. Her face is remarkable...not unlike Lincoln's, craggy like that, and tinted by the sun and wind, but it is delicate too...finely boned, and her eyes are sherry colored and timid. "Oh my," she exclaims, her breath smoking the windowpane, "It's fruitcake weather."
Just the first paragraph from my favorite book ever. Just a short story read over and over at this time of year. I've had the book since the sixties and I've shared it with anyone who wants to read it. I just sent a copy to a friend who is going through chemo. I would like to find a DVD of the original TV program starring Geraldine Page and narrated by the author...Truman Capote. All I can find it the Hallmark rendition.
I'm reading Christmas on Ladybug Farm right now. I've read a couple of other Ladybug books and this is a special novella just for Christmas. It's a nice little book telling about the three main characters...all southern gals, getting ready for their annual Christmas party.....planned to perfection with lots of details about the decorating they do in the house and things going on in the kitchen.Things don't go quite as planned. It's a delectable little treasure of a book. I haven't finished it yet.
I have a whole stack of "little books" that come out this time of year. I put them in a basket on my coffee table and reread them one by one. It's a special treat in the afternoon to curl up with one of these little treasures
Here is a list of little books for my basket...
This Year it Will Be Different, by Maeve Binchy I'll especially read this one since Maeve died just this year.
Christmas Joy, by Susan Branch ( the illustrations are wonderful. Susan has a blog and you can find it on my sidebar. Her blog is almost as good as reading one of her books.
The 12 Blessings of Christmas, by TJ Mills ( cute illustrations and some good recipes included.)
A Christmas to Remember, by Alice Gray and Susan Wales...I bought this at Walmart after seeing some nice recipes for Christmas mixed in with little quotes, and crafty projects.
Lanterns Across the Snow, by Susan Hill.... a gift from my mother in law in 1988
Skipping Christmas, by John Grishan.....I bought this after a garden club meeting, where everyone was talking about downsizing their Christmas plans as we were getting older.
The Christmas letters, by Bret Nicholaus (haven't ever read this one)
The Red Buckets by Lynda M. Nelson...... a gift from my dear friend, Nancy
Once Upon a Christmas by Lauraine Snelling - Lenora Worth (new this year...a garage sale find)
I just ordered Child's Christmas in Wales....I've seen this on TV,but have never read the book and I found it ...used, for a penny at Barnes and Noble.Couldn't bear to think of it sitting on the shelf in some used bookstore...for just a penny.
I always have my Catholic Women's Bible on the table too...with a bookmark on Chapter 2 of Luke...the Christmas story.
Just thought I'd share some of my holiday traditions with you.
Have a great day...Balisha