Friday, February 03, 2017

Felix Holt quote from chapter 6

George Eliot strikes again (does she know people or does she know people!):
The stronger will always rule, say some, with an air of confidence which is like a lawyer's flourish, forbidding exceptions or additions. But what is strength? Is it blind wilfulness that sees no terrors, no many-linked consequences, no bruises and wounds of those whose cords it tightens? Is it the narrowness of a brain that conceives no needs differing from its own, and looks to no results beyond the bargains of to-day; that tugs with emphasis for every small purpose, and thinks it weakness to exercise the sublime power of resolved renunciation? There is a sort of subjection which is the peculiar heritage of largeness and of love; and strength is often only another name for willing bondage to irremediable weakness.
From Felix Holt: The Radical chapter 6

Friday, January 27, 2017

Felix Holt quote from Chapter 27

More quotes from George Eliot's Felix Holt: The Radical (Felix himself speaking, of course)
"I have to determine for myself, and not for other men. I don't blame them, or think I am better than they; their circumstances are different. I would never choose to withdraw myself from the labour and common burthen of the world; but I do choose to withdraw myself from the push and scramble for money and position. Any man is at liberty to call me a fool, and say that mankind are benefited by the push and the scramble in the long-run. But I care for the people who live now and will not be living when the long-run comes. As it is, I prefer going shares with the unlucky."
"I'm determined never to go about making my face simpering or solemn, and telling professional lies for profit; or to get tangled in affairs where I must wink at dishonesty and pocket the proceeds, and justify the knavery as part of a system I can't alter. If I once went into that sort of struggle for success, I should want to win -- I should defend the wrong that I had once identified myself with. I should become everything that I see beforehand to be detestable. I should do this, as men are doing it every day, for the ridiculously small prize -- perhaps for none at all -- perhaps for the sake of two parlours, a rank eligible for churchwardenship, a discontented wife and several unhopeful children."

Monday, January 23, 2017


For the most part E has been uninterested in having her picture taken but recently she has become more amenable. It's great to get more than just scowls in response to the appearance of the camera.

Monday, January 02, 2017

Felix Holt quote from Chapter 1

"The mother's love is at first an absorbing delight, blunting all other sensibilities; it is an expansion of the animal existence; it enlarges the imagined range for self to move in: but in after years it can only continue to be joy on the same terms as other long-lived love -- that is, by much suppression of self, and power of living in the experience of another." - George Eliot from Felix Holt: The Radical Chapter 1

Wednesday, December 14, 2016


Less than 24 hours after having written the last post about things I am thankful for we received some devastating news. We're in a bit of a state of limbo at the moment while we wait for the news to be confirmed or not but among the swirl of thoughts and emotions I have had, I've considered whether the list of things I am thankful for makes a difference. I think there will be points where nothing else matters but I do think these blessings will make a difference.

Monday, December 12, 2016


So many things come to mind to be thankful for even just stuffed into the last couple days. We just finished the choir's last (and biggest) Christmas performance for this season and it went off quite well. Tied up in that is gratitude for music, Christmas, the friendships and community the choir has provided, and the opportunity to sing regularly and to play piano just as regularly. Then I spent over four hours yesterday catching up with a best friend and former roommate I haven't had a chance to talk to for several months. Not all the missed news was wonderful but the re-connecting was. Then I have an ultrasound scheduled for tomorrow so I am looking forward to seeing the new baby. Also connected to that I am so very very thankful that I have passed the sickness part of pregnancy and am feeling much better than I had ever given myself hope to believe was possible. Tied with that I was thankful I was feeling well enough that we were able to give the boys birthday parties no matter how small. And I am now getting more and more excited to be preparing for Christmas. I mentioned I'd like a wreath on the door this year and, a couple days ago, picked up a frame for one and some filler. When I got home from our dress rehearsal there was my wreath, hanging on the front door. It was put together more beautifully than I would have achieved. And that is tied to one of the huge over-arching reasons to be thankful: James is starting to be able to handle the effects of his concussion (or at least learning to recognize and work within its limits) and has managed to get a few things done around here (like the wreath) and has really put in a huge effort to stay calm and more positive and even help out! That sounds pretty pitiful but the debilitating effects reach into every corner of our life and overcoming even a part of them is a huge victory!

Thursday, September 29, 2016

Good grapes

We harvested our first real batch of grapes a few weeks ago and James made them into grape jelly. Now we have our second batch and we'll see what we make of this one!


Even 5-going-on-six-year-olds have dreams: I agreed that he could let the chickens out, feed them, and collect the eggs this morning. "Oh, I can do all that like an adult?" he asked. "Then some dreams do come true!"