Wednesday, December 29, 2010


Here is my bedroom reading niche (winter only, too hot in the summer to sit in this spot).  Just look at these gorgeous books!  Two interior design books (with one more on the way), one book about the French lifestyle, a new cookbook, an autobiography (autographed, thank you very much), and a biography.  A few of these books I purchased with those great 50% off coupons from Border's, the rest I received for Christmas.

So, here's the rundown:

French Essence by Vicki Archer - a gorgeous book about Australian Vicki Archer's love of all things French.  Here is a snippet about her dream life:  Vicki and her family are from Australia, while on vacation in southern France they find a battered olive farmhouse for sale and purchase it.  Not too easy to travel from Australia to Provence on a regular basis so they move to London and commute to Provence. I am not making this up. This book with its glorious photos by Carla Coulson will be in my hands when an escape is needed.

Rooms to Inspire in the City: Stylish Interiors for Urban Living by Annie Kelly. The cover of this book reminded me of my recent day alone jaunt in London--the ottoman by Robert Kime caught my attention. The layers of patterns in this book are breathtaking.  Hopefully a bit of inspiration will come my way as I  freshen-up my family room.

Bunny William's Scrapbook for Living Bunny Williams has always been a favorite of mine.  I want to immerse myself in the spaces she creates.  She is more of a collector than I am, but somehow she makes clutter look elegant.

And who doesn't love the Barefoot Contessa?  Her newest book, Barefoot Contessa How Easy is That? Fabulous Recipes and Easy Tips is a fun read and her recipes have never failed me.

Decision Points by George W. Bush is getting great reviews and I have an autographed copy thanks to my friend, Lisa.  Having met the former President a few times and knowing some of his former staff makes it a more personal read for me.  

Unbroken: A World War II Story of Survival, Resilience, and Redemption by Laurie Hillenbrand also is receiving great reviews.  It is the story of Louie Zamperini (a world class runner) who has survived all sorts of disasters including being stranded at sea for over 40 days (during WWII), then thinking he found refuge by making it to an island, is captured by the Japanese.  His misfortunes continue to mount but he survives and it is quite the tale.  He is now in his 90's and handling the book tour for Hillenbrand who is homebound due to a debilitating disease.

And the book on the way is The Finest Rooms in America by Thomas Jayne.  I will need another rainy day to sit and look through this one (it is raining as I type this, brilliant).  Rooms from my favorite house in America, Thomas Jefferson's Monticello, are featured in this book. What a treat (thank you, Connor).

In the meantime, my Amazon Wish List has been reduced by a few items so time to replenish.

Saturday, December 25, 2010


"For unto you is born this day in the city of David a Saviour, which is Christ the Lord.

And this shall be a sign unto you; Ye shall find the babe wrapped in swaddling clothes, lying in a manger.

And suddenly there was with the angel a multitude of the heavenly host praising God, and saying, 

Glory to God in the highest, and on earth peace, good will toward men."

Luke 2:11 ~ 14

Friday, December 24, 2010


Photo by J. Katsel

"Twas the night before Christmas and all through the house
Not a creature was stirring, not even a mouse.
The stockings were hung by the chimney with care,
In hopes that St. Nicholas soon would be there."
by Clement Clarke Moore

Merry Christmas!

xoxo, Kim

Tuesday, December 21, 2010


Finishing a book one has been reading  for a while is exhilarating. Loose ends are about to be wrapped up, satisfaction is on its way, and another book will be removed from the reading queue.  And then my mind starts to informally audition all the books scattered around my house that are awaiting to be read. What to read next?

First, I look at this pretty stack.  No, not just yet. But soon, perhaps next month.

And, then I notice these quick little reads.  Hmmm, too quick.

Of course, there is this little gem that will be a cozy read.  Gerald Durrell's My Family and Other Animals with its enticing cover.

But I need something I can really delve into.  And since I've recently read several light-hearted fictional works, it's time to read some serious non-fiction.

And the winner is.....

The Lost City of Z, by David Grann, recommended to me by my friend, Pam.  Listen to this, "At times, I had to remind myself that everything in this story is true: a movie star really was abducted by Indians; there were cannibals, ruins, secret maps, and spies; explorers died from starvation, disease, attacks by wild animals, and poisonous arrows; and at stake amid the adventure and death was the very understanding of the Americas before Christopher Columbus came ashore in the New World." Didn't your little heart quicken just reading Grann's words?  Mine did.

So, I'm off to the Amazon (in my imaginary mind, because I can assure you, I will never step foot in that place).  This should be a great follow-up to one of my favorite adventure books of all time, The River of Doubt, by Candice Millard.

I would love to know: What are you reading?

Sunday, December 12, 2010


Storybook Land Canal Boat Ride, Disneyland

"I have thought it all over I assure you, and I can perfectly account for every thing that at first seemed strange to me as well as to you."

"Can you, indeed!"

"Yes. I have explained it to myself in the most satisfactory way."
Mrs. Dashwood to Elinor, Sense and Sensibility by Jane Austen

"Spare me the gossip from the looney-bin."
Bertie Wooster,  Thank You, Jeeves by P.G. Wodehouse

"I'm not smart enough to speak unintelligibly."
Catherine Moreland, Northanger Abbey, by Jane Austen

"Wake up, Bertie, you old ass! she cried in a voice that hit me between the eyebrows and went out at 
the back of my head."
Aunt Dahlia and Bertie Wooster, Right Ho, Jeeves, P.G. Wodehouse