Thursday, January 04, 2007

What do you do in your spare time?

As I've mentioned before, I finally completed the first of my college degrees back in May of last year, after attending classes part time for... wait for it... 15 years. The past 7 months have been a bit of an adjustment, rearranging schedules & priorities, after so many years of school & studying gobbling up my time. The biggest challenge has not been what to do with my time (there are so many things I wanted to do, but had to say no to over the years); it has been deciding which activities are the most beneficial & necessary. Among these are knitting, gardening, private baths, teatime, & blogging!

Even during the years in school, I always made time to read for pleasure, usually just before bed, while waiting at the doctor/dentist/orthodontist office, & semester breaks. The paradigm shift has been not feeling guilty about reading for fun! I cannot count the number of times over the years that I’ve sat down to read a new novel, & caught myself thinking, “I really ought to be doing my homework/research/project/term paper.” Now, I am enjoying that satisfying moment when the realization dawns that, no, I don’t have to do anything else & really can just sit here, treating myself to a little literary escapism.

In that frame of mind, I offer my first Thirteen Thursday of 2007:

Thirteen Favorite Authors
1. Jane Austen: Having discovered her in my early 30’s, I faithfully re-read at least two of her books each year
2. Lillian Jackson Braun: “The Cat Who…” series of mysteries- funny, quirk sleuth & his cats
3. Lucy Maud Montgomery: I first read her books after seeing “Anne of Green Gables” on television, & have since read nearly everything she had published- I especially love her short stories
4. Tamar Myers: Two wonderful series of mysteries- one based in Pennsylvania, the other in South Carolina
5. Maud Hart Lovelace: I discovered the “Betsy & Tacy” series when I was in Jr High
6. Elizabeth Peters: A relatively new discovery (with the past year) though she has been writing for years; I have devoured these mysteries set in turn of the century Egypt
7. Jan Karon: Delightful stories of the town of Mitford & Father Tim
8. Stephanie Barron: A series of fictional mysteries based on the life of Jane Austen
9. Miss Read: Delightful stories about a small village in England & their beloved teacher
10. P.G. Wodehouse: A prolific author, he wrote more than 100 books parodying upper-crust English society- Bertie Wooster & his man Jeeves are his most famous characters
11. J.K. Rowlings: Our entire family has devoured the entire “Harry Potter” series; the first books that Sam wanted to read
12. Agatha Christie: The Grand Dame of cozy mysteries; I particularly love Miss Marple & Tommy & Tuppence
13. Mary Daheim: Another modern mystery author- humorous & engaging, I enjoy her series based in a Seattle Bed & Breakfast inn


Stefaneener said...

What a great list. Some of my faves, some new that I'll have to check out.

Yep -- one of the things I treasure most about dropping out of not one but two PhD programs is that lack of guilt.

Of course, I then proceeded to have four children. No free time here! Just knitting and reading around the edges.

Charity said...

This is a great list of authors! Some good ol' favorites, and even better, some new ones to check out! :0)

Texas Mammie said...

I don't know why I'm surprised that we have some in common. Since I've been keeping The Princess, I've kept my reading light. "The Cat Who..." and Father Tim of Mitford are among my favorites!
I'm going to be so sad when Lillian dies (she's pretty old, you know)and takes Q and the kitties with her.
You look like an actress, (I won't say who just yet), but I'm curious, who do people tell you that you look like?