Sunday, 4 January 2009

January with Music and the Written Word

January is here again, the time when I start thinking about going through all my cupboards, shelves, wardrobes, drawers and anywhere else that I could possibly
de-clutter. My computer needs de-cluttering too. Also the time when I make my first efforts at spring cleaning. Where do I start I ask myself.

I have decided to make a start by cataloguing and sorting all our videos and DVDs. We also plan to transfer the videos that I want to keep on to DVD discs,(sometime?).

I have archives of videos (bought and/or copied from TV) of the Royal Family as I am an ardent Royalist it would take up a lot less room if I did this.

Also apart from the many DVDs I have bought or had for gifts we have dozens and dozens (no, the number is in the hundreds) of free ones given as supplements in our weekend newspaper. At the rate that I sit and watch these they could, and probably will, last me for many years.

I do enjoy my travel sets(Michael Palin particularly) and wildlife (Richard Attenborough) and the numerous costume dramas and Classics. I may at the end of the task confess to how many I find - we'll see!

C.D.'s. Tapes and books need to be gone through too.

Before I begin this afternoon (hopefully) I'll just show you my latest acquisitions in this department.

I love these 2 new C.D.'s. The Priests I bought for myself and Katherine Jenkins was part of my Christmas present from Alan. 'The Priests' - 3 Irish Priests who recorded an album of sacred music and suddenly found themselves famous. I watched a TV programme of their rise to fame and they came over as 3 very intelligent and charismatic priests who were very caring and compassionate towards those in their care. They turned down a tour of the States because of their priestly commitments and were donating any profits to charity. All this apart I think they make a lovely sound.

Katherine Jenkins is a Welsh Mezzo Soprano and sings popular Sacred Arias on this C.D.

This book, Tales from Walnut Tree Farm,I bought for myself with a token I received from the makers of my favourite cereal when I made a complaint, because I found an inch long piece of sharp wood in my cereal.

Roger Deakin, the author kept notebooks of his daily thoughts, feelings, impressions and observations. Discursive, personal and often impassioned, they reveal the way he saw the world. He had an extraordinary and restless curiosity about both the natural and human worlds. This coupled with his love of literature and music and his sense of humour make it interesting reading.

Then we come to Michael Palin's latest. We are watching his latest travel series on TV so Alan bought me the book. He is revisiting some of the places and people that made a lasting impression on him during his 'Around the World in 80 Days' travels 20 years ago.

These 4 novels were bought for me by my daughter Jane. Susan Sallis and Anita Shreve are two of my favourite contemporary authors.
Lastly, this particular set of 10 books, which I also put in Jane's Christmas stocking, I bought for myself. They do stand on their own but together they make for a long saga. They are about a village in England set in the 1990's. They are not 'idealistic' like the Miss Read books on village life earlier in the last century, but every aspect of modern contemporary life takes place in this village. I picked the first one up over Christmas and thinking I would maybe just occasionally read one in between my other reading, I find it hard to put them down. In one sense they are very easy reading but also the tension is quite consuming. I am about to start on the 4th one, as is Jane.
OK there is still an hour before dinner preparation to begin my new task!


Elizabethd said...

Happy New Year!
We have just bought Katherine Jenkins Cd, she is an artist that we are very fond of, lovely voice.
I know all your books except the Walnut tree farm one, that looks interesting.

LBP said...

Happy New Year! I love new books!

Mike said...

Oh my goodness! I sweat when I think of all the sorting I have yet to do! An inch long piece of wood? You'd better not tell us which one... co co pops? LOL :)

Lorrie said...

Somehow, January stirs up that decluttering, organizing part of my brain, too.
We just bought a program that converts our VHS tapes onto DVDs. We're doing this mostly of our home-taped family videos. What memories are triggered by seeing these tapes.

Happy New Year, Barbara and God's richest blessings,

Linds said...

I saw the Priests programme and they are wonderful! You lucky girl. Catherine Jenkins has a beautiful voice too. I haven't heard of that set of books you have, but they look fascinating, so I will look out for them. I can't believe you are already thinking of spring cleaning, Barbara! Very impressive. I need to do some soon, but the house is bursting at the seams with David's gear from uni and that is enough to make my head ache for now.

zetor said...

I bought 'The Priests' before Christmas , it is wonderful I love their 'Ave Maria'.
Oh Barbara your books look good too, I've read a couple of Susan Sallis in the past, I have most of Anita Shreve, have you read the Pilot's wife(A very good book)?

Penless Thoughts said...

The New Year does seem to being out that desire to straighten and sort and organize. Mickey & I just spent a day going through all the food in our cabinets and organizing it better. Feels so good to get that done and I am amazed at how much we have!!!!

Sarah said...

I have stumbled upon your lovely blog via 'About New York' where I was looking at posts about Essex.
I wanted to leave a comment because, coincidentally, I bought a book by Roger Deakin today-'Wildwood'. I read 'Waterlog' last year and loved it. Have fun reading all your new books and de-cluttering! Apologies if you get this comment twice as my computer froze before when I tried to leave it.

Winifred said...

I did think about treating myself to The Priests CD as they sound great.

I can't face any major work in the house until the light gets better. Maybe March! You see I always find a reason to procrastinate!

Willow said...

Wow! Lots of reading, watching and listening for you in your English garden! I bought Celtic Woman's Christms cd and am thoroughly enjoying it. I hadn't heard of The Priests but since I liked both Teatro and Blake which you recommended, I'll look for The Priests.

debbie bailey said...

I catalogued my VHS's, DVD's, and books, because I have so many it was impossible to find anything! I numbered the videos and DVD's putting a label on the tape or disc itself and one on the box it stays in. I filed them in numerical order. In a stenographer's book, I listed them in alphabetical order which makes them very easy to find.

I organized my books using the Dewey Decimal System. Do ya'll use that in England? Bigger libraries here in the US use the Library of Congress system. I don't like it very much. I find it too complicated.

Anita Shreve is one of my favorite authors too. Her Fortune's Rocks had me speechless! It'd make a great movie.

bennie and patsy said...

Thank's I have a list of new books to read and CD's to buy.

Vee ~ A Haven for Vee said...

Barbara, you are adding so many books to your library that I can see why you must cull out others. I have to do this yearly as well; usually it coincides with the town library's book sale. Now I am quite curious about your book selections as I am only familiar with Anita Shreve.

And, I know nothing of the music either so I'm wondering if I can find something on either Imeem or Playlist...that'll keep me busy and out of trouble for a bit.

Best wishes with the de-cluttering!

Vee ~ A Haven for Vee said...

Okay, the minute I heard that voice I recognized this singer as one who performed in Washington over the 4th of July. I believe that she sang "Shenandoah." I'd love to find that! Instead, I added Pachelbels Canon. Not too shabby. Haven't come up with anything for The Priests yet.

Tea Time With Melody said...

Fern, I do hope you win the lottery! lol. I too am an ardent Royalist. I collect everything. I just finished collecting all 8 plates of Princess Diana and I just bought the "Illustrated London News, Coronation 1953" of Queen Elizabeth in an antique store a few weeks ago. I have never seen anything like it. It is absolutely fantastic.

Lynne said...

Hi Barbara,
I found you through Sarah's blog at Circles of Rain. I see we share some favourite authors; Anita Shreve, Anne Tyler, Anne Fine although it's a while since I've read ant of hers and Joanne Harris who I have only recently started reading. The set of books sound interesting. I'll have to take a look at them.
I love Michael Palin and I'm disappointed to be missing his new series. I live in Sweden. Although they are showing a Richard Attenborough series here at the moment.
Best of luck with your sorting out. Always a satisfying feeling when it's done.

Sara said...

I remember you going through your spring cleaning process last year....gosh, has a whole year gone by already! Amazing.

That Deakin book sounds very interesting to me, and I see from one of your commentators that he has others too; I'm adding him to my list of books to find one day.

Music and books are great because they last forever and you can enjoy them over and over. You have plenty of enjoyable hours ahead of you with your selections.

Barbara said...

A little late, but nevertheless all my best wishes for 2009. May it be a healthy, joyfull and good year for you and your family. I should also rearrange all the "music and written words" (including all the articles of newspapers and magazines which we keep!)...but..when? Time goes so fast and there are so many other things which should be sorted out too....

Anonymous said...

Ooo Rebecca Shaw- yes I like her work. Definately more up to date than Miss Read with more current issues. The Walnut Farm book sounds interesting. I'll add it to my Amazon wish list. Thank you for the recommendation.

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