Wednesday, June 07, 2006

Comfort reading

Our next group of guests from Virginia arrives in ten days. I'm busy decluttering and deep-cleaning before they get here. Today Joan and I emptied the two linen closets in the hallway downstairs. (We moved into this house in six months ago. As we unloaded the moving truck, we shoved lots of stuff into available space thinking we'd deal with it all later. Later is now.)

Our house was built in 1875 - well, at least the first floor was. The second floor was added in 1906. This house does not have lots of storage space. Think about furniture of the 19th century - wardrobes, chifforobes, blanket chests, linen presses, chests of drawers, etc. People didn't have closets in their homes then, or if they did the closets were tiny. That's what we have - a few tiny closets in a large home. The family who owned this house extensively remodeled the downstairs eight years ago and very thoughtfully made two linen closets in the space under the staircase. Those two linen closets we stuffed with towels, sheets, blankets, quilts, winter gear (which we may never need here in AL), tents, sleeping bags, pictures that needed wallspace to grace, and a few other odd things.

I would be mortified if our guests opened our Fibber-Magee-like linen closets, so I decide that we'd organize them today. They look great now, and I can allow anyone to open them. Even better, they're so organized, I can now send an 8-year-old to get sheets and she can easily find the right size!

When I'm busy (like I will be for the next 2 1/2 weeks) I find myself eschewing new reads for "comfort reading." I turn to old favorites that are mellow and relaxing after a day busily spent. Last night I picked a book by Miss Read that I've read at least a dozen times: Winter in Thrush Green. It did not disappoint. Within minutes I was in Thrush Green, waiting, along with Winnie Bailey, Dimity Dean, and Ella Bembridge, to find out who has taken the corner house. I know the ending, but the journey there is enjoyed as much for its familiarity as for anything else.

Other favorite comfort reads for me include:
books by Barbara Pym
The Complete Uncle Abner by Melville Davisson Post
Virginia Rich's mysteries
books by Jane Austen
books by Louisa May Alcott
books by Christopher Morley
Agatha Christie's mysteries
my mom's old Childcraft books from the 1940's

This library in Indiana lists books for comfort reading. What are your "comfort reads"?

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Blogger Jeannine said...

The house we lived in before this one was small and old and had only one closet when we bought it. We added a coat closet and bedroom closet before we moved in.

My comfort reading usually consists of any mystery series that I like, and tried and true classics such as books by Jane Austen, Sir Walter Scott, etc. I think the No. 1 Ladies Detective Series is a very mellow, comforting series too.

10:00 AM  
Blogger Carmon Friedrich said...

I like Lord Peter Wimsey when I am needing a bit of comfort. Don't tell my husband. :-)

9:38 PM  
Blogger Dy said...

Hi Larua,

Thank you for your comment. I do check our little local library's sale shelves regularly, and haunt the used bookstores in the area, as well. I don't think it's ever dawned on me to prefer new over used - books are so precious, no matter what, aren't they? *smile* I'll definitely check out, too. Thank you!

My comfort reads tend to run to John Dunn, Robert Frost, Neal Stephenson, and GK Chesterton. The flow and cadence of each of their writings make it easy for me to get lost for an hour (or an afternoon). The nice thing is that each author is so different from the others that there's something for every mood.


9:20 AM  
Blogger Sherry said...

Oh, Carmon, one of my daughters wants to marry Lord Peter, but I've told her that he's way too old for her--n the books and in real time.

8:54 AM  
Blogger Amber Dawn said...

Comfort reading...that would be anything by Lori Wick, Beverly Lewis, or Francine Rivers right now. There are couple of books by Lori Wick that I like to read over again...with a thick blanket on the couch with candles and pepermint tea..mmm!

12:21 AM  

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