Tuesday, October 25, 2011

Hey Look! We're Pretties!

Tuesday, October 25, 2011
It's been almost a year since Gary put a ring on it, and while that makes him ineligible for the Bailey Family Christmas Draw and the Bailey Family Hockey Draft (you have to be MARRIED or LEGALLY BINDING EQUIVALENT for that kind of business), we decided it was high time to get moving on the wedding planning.

Step One:

Engagement Photos.

Thanks to my good friend and former flatmate, Sarah, for being so patient with us while we awkwardly made faces at the camera and frolicked in a meadow. For reals. The Bailey-Geyers aren't really so great at frolicking, as it turns out...but sitting against a brick wall? Now THAT we can do.

Wednesday, October 05, 2011

Autumn Eats

Wednesday, October 05, 2011
I love the vast array of fresh produce available all summer long. Strawberries so ripe and red they look like jewels. A handful of raspberries that make me feel like I’m 7, plucking them off the bush at Grandma Clara’s house, my fingers stained. Fresh lettuce, baby potatoes, crisp garden carrots.

But then my attention starts to wane a little bit. I’m not saying that I get tired of barbecue and crunchy salads, fresh juicy tomatoes and nectarines that taste like sunshine – not at all. But around the same time that school starts up again in the fall, the cravings for the food of a different season start to sneak up on me.

Bubbling stews and soups. Roasted chicken and potatoes. Crisp, sweet apples. Spicy gingerbread cookies and cups of steaming tea and cider. Caramel. Pie. Gravy. Casseroles with layers of cheese. Curries. Pumpkin muffins, pumpkin bread, and let’s not forget – pumpkin spice lattes. Chai. Root vegetables.

These are some of my favourite foods, and while I’ve sat down to a roast beef dinner in sweltering heat several times in my life – and I’ll do it again, without hesitation – it’s definitely more pleasurable when the air around us starts to cool.

Tuesday, October 04, 2011

Autumn Reads

Tuesday, October 04, 2011
I love fall. Late August through the end of October is probably my favourite time of year. (November is a month for brooding, and then it’s back into awesometown as we ramp up to Christmas!)

It’s still warm enough to get away with no jacket, but it’s chilly enough for a sweater or a scarf.

And I love sweaters.

In tribute of my favourite season, I’m going to attempt to post a mini series about my favourite fall things.

Today: My favourite fall books.

Fall reading material is different than other seasons, but it’s a stark contrast with what I read in the summer. Summertime, and the reading is eaaaasy – cheap and steamy mysteries, grocery-store romances, bodice rippers, British chick lit. That’s what I like to read by the pool or on a road trip.

But when the weather turns, I like something cozy. Engrossing. A little bit…sinister around the edges.

In no particular order:

The Time Traveler’s Wife by Audrey Niffenegger. I read this one every few years. It’s one of my favourite books.

A Song of Ice and Fire series (also known as the Game of Thrones series) by George R.R. Martin – I finished the first two books over the summer, but I’m saving the rest for after Thanksgiving. Because after all – winter is coming.

The Harry Potter series by J.K.Rowling. I read these as they came out in the summer, but I truly relish reading them in the fall, for that back-to-Hogwarts nostalgia.

American Gods by Neil Gaiman.

Her Fearful Symmetry by Audrey Niffenegger – I read this with high, high hopes. I was disappointed because I wanted something like what she’d already written, but on it’s own – it’s perfect for fall.

The Forgotten Garden or The Distant Hours by Kate Morton. These are gothic-style family mysteries set in pre-WWII England. Perfect for tea sipping and brooding in a field of heather (in my imagination).

The Thirteenth Tale by Diane Setterfield. Another gothic suspense story. It's been a few years since I've read this, but I stayed up all night racing to the conclusion of this ghost (or is it?) story.

The Night Circus by Erin Morgenstern. To be fair, I’m only half-way through, but OH MY GOD this is everything I wanted in this book. I don’t really care how it ends, I’ve gotten my $9.99 worth of ebook enjoyment out of it already. I’ve loved it so much that I’m going to go buy it in hardcover.

I’d love to hear what you like to read when the leaves start to fall. Jane Eyre? Pride and Prejudice? Gritty detective stories? Sweeping romances? Lay it out. If you’ve got any suggestions for me, I’d love to hear them, too.

I'm going to retire to my chaise, wrap myself in a blanket, brew some tea and eat some caramel corn. Until tomorrow...