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Checking in from my vacation week. I am enjoying a stay in the luxury of my own home and the paradise of my own garden. Bookman is with me too for a few days. We were both so tired last night we fell asleep as soon as our heads hit to pillow. I always have dreams of having a huge multi-acre garden with my sole job being to tend it. But after having spent the day working in my small urban garden yesterday I’m not so sure I would be cut out for anything larger. How do all those people who write books about their huge gardens manage it? They certainly don’t do it alone but somehow they leave out their team of gardeners who do much of the heavy lifting. Because let me just say, after spending a day just weeding and digging my shoulders are sore and Bookman’s back is tired. But we enjoyed ourselves immensely and will be going out for more punishment today. More details on what we are doing in the usual weekly garden roundup on Sunday. Oh, the suspense!

We take frequent breaks so I am also reading too. I am very much enjoying Martha Cooley’s novel The Archivist. I’ve also been catching up on my magazine reading. I read a marvelous article about Aldo Leopold and phenology in — oh goodness I can’t remember which magazine, Earth maybe. Anyway, it has me wanting to read A Sand County Almanac. We also had a 20% off coupon and a gift card from Barnes and Noble. We’ve been enjoying the pleasure of thinking about what books to buy fo about a week. We finally decided to order Nut Butter Universe a vegan cookbook filled with recipes using a variety of nut and seed butters, and Bring up the Bodies by Hilary Mantel. I had a sudden urge to read it because, surprise, I tossed over starting Tristram Shandy last week for a book I had planned to read but completely forgotten about, The Letters of Dorothy Osborne. Osborne, also known as Lady Temple, has a marvelous collection of love letters written from 1652-1654 to her suitor Sir William Temple. What does this have to do with Mantel and her Cromwell books? Well, Henry Cromwell was a cousin and suitor. Henry was the son of Oliver Cromwell a descendent of Katherine Cromwell, an elder sister of Thomas Cromwell. See how that connects? I suspect that by the time the book arrives in my mailbox later this week I will be so deep in other books that I won’t have time for it. But at least it will be on hand for the next sudden urge.

Today’s vacation plans include more gardening as I mentioned earlier. And this evening Bookman and I will be taking a bike ride over to a local park for a community sing along. I found out about these several weeks ago, too late to be able to go to the May sing where they had 1,000 people turn out. The weather is supposed to be gorgeous today so perhaps there will be a big turn out tonight too. I’ll be sure to let you know how it goes!

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