Friday, February 25, 2011


"She walks in beauty, like the night
Of cloudless climes and starry skies;
And all that's best of dark and bright
Meet in the aspect of her eyes:
Thus mellow'd to that tender light
Which heaven to gaudy day denies.
One shade the more, one ray the less,
Had half impair'd the nameless grace
Which waves in every raven tress,
Or softly lightens o'er her face."

-Lord Byron

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Heaven sent Darcy

Colin Firth as Mr Darcy in the BBC version is the best! "In vain I have struggled ~ it will not do! My feelings will not be repressed ~ You must allow me to tell you how ardently I admire and love you." Mr Darcy ~ To Miss Bennets delight, Darcy had been hiding his affection. When he could no longer sleep for want of her, he raced to meet her and blurt out his desire to be near her always. Who could refuse such a proposal whilst gazing into his face!Mr Darcy please, could you repeat your meaning in a word? Was it the call of love that kept you awake? Are you certain, there is no mistake? What it is about Miss Bennert, Jane, or Barbara that continues to delight, amuse, console and provoke Mr Darcy and the next generations? Perhaps it is our mutual serial crushes on most of Austen's men, or perhaps it encourages us to celebrate our belief in true love? The pure genius of Pride and Prejudice as a divine comedy of love ~ lends us all a secret desire to share an oral reading of our kindred prose over tea with an audience that radiates appreciation of the pen. Men do respond differently than women to Austen's rip of ink ~ but alas we all agree that there is much to be admired above the empire dresses that our Divine Jane wore. In the 1800's women were rarely published or thought educated adequately to do so. After a few cultured men read Sense and Sensibility, these few were launched into boasting of her keen observations of the most absurd societal rituals. The belief soon emerged that by reading Austen ~ One had a respected taste and cunning of intellect. A few opportunists arranged tours of "Austen Land". Two distinct groups of fans emerged; those who ‘were keen to celebrate Austen’s mental distinctiveness and Artistry and those who ‘took comfort in such an artist being just like the rest of us‘. The BBC honored Jane Austen with a biographical film titled in the above photo. Worth a watch by any true fan of Jane.


Elizabeth Gilbert is the author of EAT, PRAY, LOVE ~ and Julia Roberts plays the role of a woman who seeks to understand her resistance to being ALONE, and intimate with GOD, not a man. As a spiney porcupine, my need to be close, to connect with people, and with God has had its good and bad points! OUCH! In July it was a wise choice to go to Silver Lake and huddle with the Cloos Clan! In the freeze that delights all valley girls, in the middle of July, up high in the Sierra's ~ a great shared HOPE is that we will need socks, blankets, hats, gloves and the warmth of friends around a bonding fire. We hurry and scurry up the hill to gather together ~ to come to a close huddle and enjoy the warm feelings of love. Like porcupines, we are ever so careful, oh so intentional to let our quills relax, to be laid back, and just hang as One under the stars, and in the Son. At this age, I am yet a student of love. My learning curve in relating to others without hurting, or poking a tender heart is like a long winding mountain curve without a safety edge. My regret is that my quick judgement was harsh. God's Word for me today: "Without passing judgment on disputable matters." On matters that are non-essential in God's eyes. "One man's faith allows him to eat everything, but another man, whose faith is weak, eats only vegetables. The man who eats everything must not look down on him who does not, and the man who does not eat everything must not condemn the man who does, for God has accepted him." Romans 14:1 ~ MY LESSON: Love others as you are loved, with plenty of GRACE! As a child I poked fun, and I pricked my parents occasionally on purpose. We need to connect with God, and He created us with a need to associate with others, to reach out and touch others, and be willing to be pricked, and love them anyway! Today a song was sung while video images of a young girl flashed on the church big screen. The lyrics were "have you seen her, the lost girl, the one with a past, the one we all look past, the one we dismiss, the one we rush by, have you seen her tears, have you heard her cry? She is done with lying, she just wants to get close, but she thinks nobody knows, that she did not mean to hurt anyone in her quest for love." We are convicted to pass her the gift of GRACE. "Although I am less than the least of all God's people, this grace was given me" Ephesians 3:8We yearn for intimacy and God knows our hearts for He created us and implanted a need in us to be intimate. God used a stranger to speak this truth to me this week. "Love is a gift from God." Such a gift is to be received with grace and gratitude. Therefore; "I pray that out of His glorious riches He may strengthen you with power through His Spirit in your inner being, so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, may have power, together with all the saints, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, and to know this love that surpasses knowledge—that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God."
Ephesians 3:16 ~ His love is as pure as it has ever been.

Song of Solomon 2:2 Lover
Like a lily among thorns
is my darling among the maidens.
Like an apple tree among the trees of the forest
is my lover among the young men.
I delight to sit in his shade,
and his fruit is sweet to my taste.
He has taken me to the banquet hall,
and his banner over me is love.
Strengthen me with raisins,
refresh me with apples, for I am faint with love.
"Be completely humble and gentle; be patient, bearing with one another in love. Make every effort to keep the unity of the Spirit through the bond of peace. There is one body and one Spirit—just as you were called to one hope when you were called." Ephesians 4 ~ Forgiven, redeemed, justified, and assured that I am who He created me to be ~ lovely in His sight, and open to His surprising, unsurpassed, undeserved love! IN the FLIGHT of LIFE we NEED constant correction to land safely! God's WORD for me to EAT, PRAY and LOVE today. 1 Corinthians 1:19 For it is written: "I will destroy the wisdom of the wise; the intelligence of the intelligent I will frustrate. Where is the wise man? Where is the scholar? Where is the philosopher of this age? Has not God made foolish the wisdom of the world? For since in the wisdom of God the world through its wisdom did not know him, God was pleased through the foolishness of what was preached to save those who believe. ~ I came to you in weakness and fear, and with much trembling. My message and my preaching were not with wise and persuasive words, but with a demonstration of the Spirit's power, so that your faith might not rest on men's wisdom, but on God's power. The Spirit searches all things, even the deep things of God. For who among men knows the thoughts of a man except the man's spirit within him? In the same way no one knows the thoughts of God except the Spirit of God. ~ We have not received the spirit of the world but the Spirit who is from God, that we may understand what God has freely given us. This is what we speak, not in words taught us by human wisdom but in words taught by the Spirit, expressing spiritual truths in spiritual words. The man without the Spirit does not accept the things that come from the Spirit of God, for they are foolishness to him, and he cannot understand them, because they are spiritually discerned. The spiritual man makes judgments about all things, but he himself is not subject to any man's judgment: "For who has known the mind of the Lord that he may instruct him?" But we have the mind of Christ."

Monday, February 21, 2011

Oh my Emma

You are mistaken if you feel I am in need of your compassion ~ I blush when I think of some of the things I said and did." He has taken advantage of me, but he has not injured me. You speak as though you envy Frank Churchill." Emma was once certain that she herself would never marry. Emma Woodhouse, a spoiled 21 year-old resident of the village of Highbury, imagines herself to be naturally gifted in conjuring love matches. She was surprised by Mr Knightley's proposal. Her governess married Mr. Weston, a village widower. She takes it upon herself to find an eligible match for her new friend, Harriet Smith. Though Harriet’s parentage is unknown, Emma is convinced that Harriet deserves to be a gentleman’s wife and sets her friend’s sights on Mr. Elton, the village vicar. Meanwhile, Emma persuades Harriet to reject the proposal of Robert Martin, a well-to-do farmer for whom Harriet clearly has feelings. Harriet becomes infatuated with Mr. Elton under Emma’s encouragement, but Emma’s plans go awry when Elton makes it clear that his affection is for Emma, not Harriet. Emma realizes that her obsession with making a match for Harriet has blinded her to the true nature of the situation. Mr. Knightley, Emma’s brother-in-law and treasured friend, watches Emma’s matchmaking efforts with a critical eye. He believes that Mr. Martin is a worthy young man whom Harriet would be lucky to marry. He and Emma quarrel over Emma’s meddling, and, as usual, Mr. Knightley proves to be the wiser of the pair. Elton, spurned by Emma and offended by her insinuation that Harriet is his equal, leaves for the town of Bath and marries a girl there almost immediately. Emma is left to comfort Harriet and to wonder about the character of a new visitor expected in Highbury—Mr. Weston’s son, Frank Churchill. Frank is set to visit his father in Highbury after having been raised by his aunt and uncle in London, who have taken him as their heir. Emma knows nothing about Frank, who has long been deterred from visiting his father by his aunt’s illnesses and complaints. Mr. Knightley is immediately suspicious of the young man, especially after Frank rushes back to London merely to have his hair cut. Emma, however, finds Frank delightful and notices that his charms are directed mainly toward her. Though she plans to discourage these charms, she finds herself flattered and engaged in a flirtation with the young man. Emma greets Jane Fairfax, another addition to the Highbury set, with less enthusiasm. Jane is beautiful and accomplished, but Emma dislikes her because of her reserve and, the narrator insinuates, because she is jealous of Jane. Suspicion, intrigue, and misunderstandings ensue. Mr. Knightley defends Jane, saying that she deserves compassion because, unlike Emma, she has no independent fortune and must soon leave home to work as a governess. Mrs. Weston suspects that the warmth of Mr. Knightley’s defense comes from romantic feelings, an implication Emma resists. Everyone assumes that Frank and Emma are forming an attachment, though Emma soon dismisses Frank as a potential suitor and imagines him as a match for Harriet. At a village ball, Knightley earns Emma’s approval by offering to dance with Harriet, who has just been humiliated by Mr. Elton and his new wife. The next day, Frank saves Harriet from Gypsy beggars. When Harriet tells Emma that she has fallen in love with a man above her social station, Emma believes that she means Frank. Knightley begins to suspect that Frank and Jane have a secret understanding, and he attempts to warn Emma. Emma laughs at Knightley’s suggestion and loses Knightley’s approval when she flirts with Frank and insults Miss Bates, a kindhearted spinster and Jane’s aunt, at a picnic. When Knightley reprimands Emma, she weeps. News comes that Frank’s aunt has died, and this event paves the way for an unexpected revelation that slowly solves the mysteries. Frank and Jane have been secretly engaged; his attentions to Emma have been a screen to hide his true preference. With his aunt’s death and his uncle’s approval, Frank can now marry Jane, the woman he loves. Emma worries that Harriet will be crushed, but she soon discovers that it is Knightley, not Frank, who is the object of Harriet’s affection. Harriet believes that Knightley shares her feelings. Emma finds herself upset by Harriet’s revelation, and her distress forces her to realize that she is in love with Knightley. Emma expects Knightley to tell her he loves Harriet, but, to her delight, Knightley declares his love for Emma. Harriet is soon comforted by a second proposal from Robert Martin, which she accepts. The novel ends with the marriage of Harriet and Mr. Martin and that of Emma and Mr. Knightley, resolving the question of who loves whom after all.

Sunday, February 6, 2011


Jane Austen's novel entitled Persuasion is one of my FAV's. In the movie the actress who plays Anne Elliot brings this favorite character to life. Anne is more mature than Mis Bennett in Pride and Prejudice ~ call me prejudice, but I was persuaded to fall for Mr Wentworth - as he was worthy of my fall. One seldom has to blush for Anne. I also think Mr Wentworth is way more romantic and so therefore, highly more attractive than Mr Darcy, however, being a sailor’s wife gives way to the anchors we hold on living in a country estate.

Tuesday, February 1, 2011


"I've only been to Nancherrow once. I thought it was very beautiful, but somehow not part of the real world," says the headmistress of St. Ursula's to young Judith. Judith Dunbar, the heroine of Rosamunde Pilcher's Coming Home, starts her journey at this boarding school when her mother and sister leave to join her father in Singapore. It is here that she first gets to know her soon-to-be lifelong friend, Loveday Carey-Lewis. Through Loveday, Judith is welcomed into the Carey-Lewis family and invited to the majestic estate of Nancherrow. Coming Home truly shows a fairy-tale England. The beautiful coastal scenery and the flawless posh accents of all the characters make this almost unbelievable. Everyone is so kind, so repentant at the first hint of any mistake, and so happy--even the tragedies have their silver lining. Joanna Lumley and Peter O'Toole's roles as the happy Carey-Lewises hardly tax their acting ability, although they portray this frightfully British upper-class couple exactingly. As the story progresses through World War II, the saga of Judith Dunbar twists and turns. Not without its tragedy, her life is still enchanted by Nancherrow and its charmed residents, as familiar to her as her own family. Coming Home is not part of the real world, but rather an escape that somehow becomes the one place that feels like home.


Sue Green and Wilbur a couple now BARTED down to Oakland with me to watch the A's WIN! Such a thrill to be with a bunch of co-workers OUT OF THE OFFICE. These "A" Team of peeps HUNG OUT through these tuff unprescendented times! Jeanetta the analyst transferred to a postion paying more money while offering more security within the City. With two kids to raise that is AWESOME! Living LARGE is hard. Sue, Jobi, Diana, Kathy, Debby have all sized down and it is now time to join that A team. Living thin and debt-free is psychologically liberating! Washing my car Earl is a welcome form of exercise as is sweeping the pool! Also giving myself a pedicure cures the woe of an empty pocketbook! Increasing my income with work as a freelance writer gave me real HOPE to payoff my mortgage early. Shopping in my own closet before going to a mall has added dollars to my savings! Growing veggies - in pots round the pool WOW ~ they have a superior flavor and for $1.50 of seeds ~ fresh tomatoes, cucumbers, peppers and squash all summer with NO COST. Wash and cut veggies: A cuke, kale, ginger, carrot, celery and place in plastic baggies to keep it as FAST FOOD for the juicer! Take a plastic tub to work and keep fresh lettuce and squash for lunch!