I have always loved words…imagine my delight when the pasta treat in the featured photograph was released onto the market…

I was quite ill, on and off, when I was a little girl so I couldn’t really rush about like your average toddler. I had asthma, and the treatment for it, in the seventies, when I was growing up, was somewhat … hit and miss.

Television programmes were limited so consequently, in order to give me something to do that didn’t involve buzzing about like a fly in a jar, my mother thought it would be a good idea to teach me to read early.

I don’t remember the actual process, but I do remember looking at a comic and suddenly I could see what the characters were talking about and hear their voices! It was literally as if my mother had handed me the key to a magic kingdom that unlocked wonderful worlds of talking animals, little girls like me, adventures and – well, you get the idea.


I read voraciously – and still do, actually, devouring these wonderful worlds and untold universes created by talented authors…I gain a lot of pleasure from owning books as well, although I have a Kindle too.

But also…words are tools. Words are ingredients. I love whipping up ideas into something readable, humorous or informative and I love the trickery of words… alliteration is a favourite, if you hadn’t already guessed, onomatopoeia, ellipses, similes, metaphors … I could go on and on… a whole host of word bricks that can be used to build something wonderful.

And as you build, so you can take apart… “Etymology” is the study of words, something I enjoy, finding the links between languages that point to a simpler time when we were all part of a common culture.

For example: “pitar” is Pali for “father” – Pali being an ancient Indian language, but look! “Pater” – Latin for “father”, “pere” is French, “padre” Spanish. All these different countries linked by some wonderful word roots! Another interpretation of the World Wide Web, perhaps …

I was fortunate enough to learn Latin at school; that opened another door of understanding, as I like to take words apart for their meaning… rather like extracting a nut from its shell…


Anything ending in “ology” means the “the study of”, anything with “Bio” means “Life”… hence the Study of Life. Just a little example, but once you have the key then it is something you can always notice and have fun with…

Words are good. Words are tools but can also be used as weapons. Use them wisely and kindly, and as my old headmistress used to say:

If you can’t say anything nice, then don’t say anything at all…”


Harry Potter Spell Tag

Potter 11.jpgThis is Iceland Spar (or Optical Calcite), used in a variety of optical equipment… I wear glasses for reading!

I must thank Chloe Douglas for nominating me for this. It is primarily directed towards Harry Potter fans, as you can see from the tags, however it was fun to do! By the way, I have read all the Harry Potter books…


Potter 1

A childhood book connected to good memories.

I was quite ill when I was a child, so my mother taught me to read at a young age. She bought me the whole ‘Chronicles of Narnia’ series which transported me to a different time and world. This is a series that I returned to, even as an adult with the same enjoyment I had as a child, and an adult appreciation of the deeper message.

Potter 2

A book that took you by surprise

The Murder Bag’ by Tony Parsons. Totally hooked on this author! Well-constructed plot, detailed, convincing… It’s a police/crime/thriller book and not my usual fare.

Potter 3

The last book you read.

The Good Girl’ by Fiona Neill. Hmm. Quite enjoyed it, although I found the character of the mother unlikeable and if there is a character that is taking up a lot of page space, I do like to find something just plain ol’ nice about them… still worthwhile reading though.

Potter 4

A book that introduced you to a genre you hadn’t considered before.

The Martian’ by Andy Weir. I don’t know whether it could be strictly called Science Fiction, but I thoroughly enjoyed it and found it totally believable and compelling.

Potter 5

A funny book you’ve read.

The first funny book I ever read was ‘It Shouldn’t Happen to a Vet’ by James Herriot. My father was a vet, so I had a prior interest in it anyway, but I love James Herriot’s style of recounting his adventures in the Yorkshire Dales.

Potter 6

A book you think everyone should know about.

‘Ferney’ by James Long. This is a beautiful bittersweet story of an endless love… Beautifully written, emotion-filled, gripping story… what more can I say? Just read it!

Potter 14.jpg


Potter 7

A book or spoiler you would like to forget having read.

Alleigant’ by Veronica Roth. Sometimes I like Y.A. fiction. First two – brilliant. Last one – wish I hadn’t bothered.

Potter 13.pngCharlie obviously found this quite gripping!

Potter 8

A book you had to read for school.

Emma’ by Jane Austen. I first did this in school when I was about twelve and it was my first introduction to Classic Literature. I loved each delicately constructed sentence and carefully placed comma, the sly, but gentle humour and – of course – the ending. One book I would (and have) quite happily read for pleasure again and again.

Potter 9

A book that was painful to read.

The Time Traveler’s Wife’ by Audrey Niffenegger. I loved the film, but unfortunately I found the book had no ‘flow’ and the jumping back and forth was irritating rather than helpful to the plot.

Potter 12.jpg“Personally I didn’t think much of that one.”

Potter 10

A book that could kill (interpret as you will).

War and Peace’ by Leo Tolstoy. I went through a phase of reading Russian Classic Literature when I was an angst-ridden teenager. I read ‘War and Peace’ – it nearly killed me as indeed the physical book would if applied with sufficient force to someone’s head. It’s a big book…

I hope you enjoyed reading!

My nominees are:

In The Autumn Of My Life



…And, of course, anyone else who would like to have a go! Thank you as always for reading.

The Brotherhood Of The World Award


I must thank Xenia and the wonderful whippets, Pearl and Eivor for nominating me for this award. Thank you for thinking of me and I can highly recommend the blog WhippetWisdom for haikus, hounds and harmonious pictures and words.

EPSON MFP imageMy Whippet Misty and Burmese cat from when I was a little girl

The Brotherhood Of The World Award is an award given to bloggers by bloggers.

The rules for the Brotherhood Of The World Bloggers Award are:

  1. Thank the person who nominated you and link back to their blog.

  2. Answer the questions sent to you.

  3. Nominate around ten bloggers.

  4. Create your set of questions for your nominees.

  5. List the rules and display the Brotherhood Of The World logo in your post and/or blog.

Question 1: Which blog post do you consider your best one so far?

I hesitate to say ‘best’ – I always have a crisis of confidence when I’ve finished writing anything. Perhaps I could say enjoy most? I enjoy writing the occasional short story, and I always enjoy writing the Crystals and Cats posts… sorry, I know that’s not really a proper answer!

Question 2: What is the best comment ever on your blog?

Best ever comment? That’s a hard one. I really appreciate everyone who takes the time to read and comment, and I have had some fabulously funny conversations as well as interesting insights and information from other people.

Question 3: Did you make blog posts receiving much more attention than you expected? Which one, for example?

I am really pleased when anybody stops to have a read, but I think I was particularly pleased and surprised by how many people like Moss Agate and Motherhood… thank you everybody!

Question 4: Did you make blog posts receiving much less attention than you expected? Which one, for example?

I don’t really know… that’s the thing, you can’t expect everybody to like what you write all of the time. If I make one person smile, or think: “Ooh, that’s interesting!” then I’m happy.

A gorgeous piece of Amber, great for unity and loyalty…

My nominees are:

  1. Key Image – Samantha – great name! – has a wonderful blog following the adventures of Bertie the bear and Croc. Filled with interesting places and facts, her blog is definitely worth a visit.

  2. Passionate Mom Honey Bee – a sweet and gentle lady with wonderful recipes.

  3. theutopiauniverse – visit Brooke’s blog for her words of wisdom and motivational tips.

  4. Castle Vets Reading – and invaluable blog filled with wonderful veterinary advice and helpful information.

  5. AngelsWhisper2011 – visit Binky, she’s beautiful, kind and picture purrfect!

  6. Space, Time and Raspberries – incisive, humorous and artistic, go and have a look at Sue’s blog.

  7. NiaSunset – I just love her, she’s kind, sweet, if you don’t already know her, go and have a look.

  8. ChloeDouglasblog – have a look for interesting insights and great book reviews.

  9. Floating Speck – beautiful pictures and lovely words, friendly and welcoming.

  10. And finally… anyone who has been interested enough to stop and have a read, who’s thought again, who’s cared. It’s the Brotherhood Around The World Award after all…

Brotherhood Questions:

1) What makes you angry?

2) What was your last random act of kindness?

3) What is your key to happiness?

4) What is your philosophy of life in three words?

As usual, there is no obligation or pressure to accept this award, it’s just a nice way to show appreciation and recognition to other bloggers, and pass it on.

Thank you, as always, for reading. 

cam00596“I only have sisters… can I pretend you’re my brother Mr.Bottle?”