Inside The Box Of Summer

Sunday, July 25, 2010

Inside The Box Of Summer
(and A Special Summer Giveaway!)

A box full of summer days arrived on my doorstep on the twenty first of June.  Much like Pandora, I lifted up the heavy lid to take a peek inside with nary a thought of what I might release.  And sure enough, blowing past me with an angry gust came the hottest summer in recorded history, heat to fry the fragile flowers and burn up the skeptic’s tome.  Edward and I huddled in the cool shadows of the house as the days grew hotter and the breezes evaporated into the red clay ground.  We banished the box of summer days to a dark place in the garden where disquiet often grows, vowing to ignore its presence as best as we could.  
But then, I wondered... had we been too hasty?  Had we slammed shut the lid on this summer too soon?  Could there perhaps be some pleasures still hidden in the dry, dusty corners of that seasonal box - some colour, some laughter, just waiting to be found?
So I carried it back inside the cool house and gingerly opened it up...and discovered many things still left to enjoy this hot summer season.  So, in spite of the news and the weather, here are some of my favourite things for this summer of record!  And keep reading, there’s a great giveaway at the bottom to cheer us all up on these blistering days!

1.  Masterpiece Theatre

Edward loves to watch Masterpiece Theatre with me every Sunday evening.  He curls up at my feet and adopts his most studious air.  This summer we’ve been enjoying both the new productions of Agatha Christie’s, Hercule Poirot and Miss Marple.  Beautifully photographed and more faithful to the original stories than in recent years, these have been and continue to be, a complete treat.  This marvelous drawing by Amber Alexander reminded me so much of Edward, absorbed in Murder on the Orient Express.  You can find out more about these productions HERE, and you can see more of Amber Alexander’s wonderful art, HERE.


2.  The Hat

If I had somewhere to wear this, believe me, I would.


3.  Handbag

Handmade by London’s, Susannah Hunter, these handbags are whimsical and divine! 
See more HERE.


4.  Knitting

I’m dying to knit this!  The pattern can be found in the Early Fall issue of Vogue Knitting and it looks fairly easy, believe it or not.
See more HERE.


5.  Fall Clothes!

They will be here soon... and autumn is my favourite season for clothes.  
This ensemble by Ralph Lauren is my first choice!


6.  Movie

When I exited the theatre after seeing the sumptuous movie, I Am Love, I felt as though I had spent two hours inside the colour orange.  With each scene seemingly kissed by fire, each frame luscious as honey dripping off a red, red rose, this sunny colour dominated my senses just as it clothed the main character.  The movie is sublime eye candy, to be sure, but the real jewel of the piece is the remarkable performance by Tilda Swinton.  The change in her character from the first scene till the last is simply phenomenal.


7.  Books

I have been reading like a fiend all summer.  Is there a better activity on a sweltering day?  Here are five I’ve loved:
Will There Be Good News by Kate Atkinson - witty and so much fun
Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte - I reread this one for my classics book club. Just magnificent!
Absence of Mind by Marilynne Robinson
The Diaries of Virginia Woolf
What Is Left The Daughter by Howard Norman


8. Song

If The Stars Were Mine by Melody Gardot
Like a warm breeze off the sea - pure summer.


9.  Smiles

One of my favourite scenes on film has always been THIS DANCE by the great comic duo, Laurel and Hardy. So charming and sweet, I could watch it over and over.  The aforementioned actress, Tilda Swinton, must feel the same way because last month in Edinburgh, she led a public performance of this very dance.  This makes me smile and I do so wish I could have taken part.  I love to see humans behaving like this.
 See Ms. Swinton's version, HERE.


10.  Laughter

THIS just makes me laugh.  I can’t help it.


Bonus!  A Giveaway!...

So many of you wrote me following my post on To Kill A Mockingbird in which I mentioned the song I cowrote with The Songwriter.  The song is called “Jump On It” and it was recorded by John Anderson.  It’s also on The Songwriter’s latest CD, so as a special summer giveaway, I’m including, not only this CD, but a copy of To Kill A Mockingbird as well.  The only rule... if you’ve already read the book, you must pass it on to someone who hasn’t!  
Just leave a comment on this post and you’re entered.  
The drawing will be midnight Friday the 30th!
  Good Luck, and Happy Summer to You All!

Congratulations to Michelle May!
She's the winner!!