Monday, April 24, 2017

Books and comfort food...


On a grey day last week I took my book to a local cafe and sat at a table near the window.
I ordered a pot of tea and a hearty bowl of soup.
There were scads of people lunching and chatting yet I felt quite sheltered by the noise in my little corner by the window.

Kate Morton's book "The Lake House" has so many twists and turns that I cannot figure out the mystery that she has so cleverly crafted.

I have been lunching on soup quite a bit as I find it such a comforting meal.
Simple, hot, tasty and nutritious.


I've noticed a lot of dandelions on the boulevards that line the streets nearby...
many lawns are dotted with the yellow flowers that are considered by many as noxious weeds.

We have a gadget for pulling these long rooted weeds out of the lawn.
The taproots can be 8-10 inches and if you don't get the root in its entirety it will grow back with a vengeance!


I received a lovely gift from a local author.
Thank you for the book Lise-Lotte!


has written a book about 
her GreenHouse
the gift her Mother gave to her while she was in Hospice.

Her Mother was an avid gardener and was happy pottering about in her "glasshouse" in her garden by the sea.
The greenhouse was a gift from her husband many years ago...

Lise -Lotte, friends and family dismantled the glasshouse and moved it carefully 
before reassembling it in her back yard...and by all accounts it was a challenge!

(Lise-Lotte's Mother, like my own Mother, wore Chanel No. 5)


Greenhouse Hygge
The House of My Growing Dreams


Lise-Lotte popped in a packet of Earl Grey Tea 
 several of her beautiful art cards
and so I put the kettle on and brewed some tea while I read her book.

Lise- Lotte has used many beautiful snapshots of her garden and greenhouse
in the book...

Lise-Lotte has written a lovely tribute to her Mother
shared with us her vision for the greenhouse 
how it will play a new role in her garden.

Lise-Lotte uses it for entertaining 
as well as growing and propagating flowers 
and vegetables.

The author is able to pop out and sit in her greenhouse 
all year long
sipping a cup of tea or a glass of wine.
It is a quiet refuge, a place for reflection and contemplation.

Having recently lost my own Mother 
I can understand why Lise-Lotte likes to spend so much time in her Mother's greenhouse.

I feel that she, like me, is looking for moments 
when we can be close to,  remember and honour our Mothers.

If you are in the Victoria area you can find Lise-Lotte's book at:
 Ivy's on Oak Bay Avenue, 
Tanners in Sidney on Beacon Avenue, 
Thorn and Thistle Flower Merchants on Bowker Avenue
Russell Nursery on Wain Road

Southlands Nursery In Vancouver also carry the book.

I received this book as a gift and in no way am I being reimbursed by the author
all opinions are mine.


More lunchtime comfort soup...
this one, a creamy tomato basil bisque
with a side of salad and a baguette slice.


I am looking for some new book titles and know many of you are avid readers.
What are you currently reading or which books are on your wish list?

Thank you for stopping by The Humble Bungalow Blog.
XO

57 comments:

  1. I'm reading one of Ann Cleeves' Shetland Island mysteries with Jimmy Perez. I've watched the British series, and now I'm hooked on the books. They are different enough from the TV version that it almost doesn't matter that I know "who done it." I was actually having a mug of tomato bisque soup as I began reading this!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Soups and good books seem like a great combo!
      I will check out Ann Cleeves books....thank you Jane.

      Delete
    2. Your morning walks and cafe time sounds delightful
      I will check out Ann Cleeves,too
      During this time of ups and a lot of downs considering health of my father (and its traumatic impact on us all),all I could read are mysteries and very "light" books.
      So,I've just finished new Donna Leon's Earthly Remains, Steve Burrow's The Cast of Falcons and Helen Simonsen's Major Pettigrew's Last Stand. I liked all three of them
      Dottoressa

      Delete
    3. Someone else mentioned Donna Leon's new book to me...I am putting it on my list! I enjoyed the Major Pettigrew book too

      Delete
    4. I've read and enjoyed Major Pettigrew as well

      Delete
  2. This made me smile! I have the Greenhouse Hygge book - bought it back in January and it gave me such a lift! A greenhouse is high on my wish list!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. We purchased our Halls English greenhouse from Russell Nursery, Brian Russell delivered it for us and installed it as well...we are excited about our second summer season growing tomatoes and a few other plants. I am pretty sure that you will enjoy a greenhouse...and your grandchildren will have fun watching things grow!

      Delete
  3. The greenhouse memories must be so precious and beautiful for Lise-Lotte.

    Take care and much love

    SSG xxx

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Lise-Lotte writes about her mother with such affection...its a poignant story.

      Delete
  4. I love soup and am happily anticipating our approaching Winter when i can enjoy it so much more. The Greenhouse book does look interesting, especially as almost nobody has them here these days. My father always had them, a shaded place for growing ferns, which we called a Bush house. I have never read The Lake House, but I should, as I keep hearing about it!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Greenhouses seem to be popular here where we get cool ocean breezes and many grey days...they extend the growing season and they hold the heat making it easier to grow tomatoes and tender plants like melons.

      Delete
  5. I have just started The Tea Girl of Hummingbird Lane by Lisa Sea. Same author as Snowflake and thhe Secret Fan, a favorite.

    ReplyDelete
  6. I really enjoyed the Ann Cleeves books as I have family in Shetland. I have been "weeding"
    the Mystery section and so have been reminded of other mysteries set in faraway places (the perfect escape). There is a recent Maisie Dobbs by Jacqueline Winspear and I devoured an Inspector Montalbano by Camillieri. I do a lot of solo dining so a book is a good friend. Some pre-blog short columns can be found in Maeve's Times, the newspaper columns of Maeve Binchy who wrote for The Irish Times from the 60's to the 00's. I think that I will go to Southlands when I get home and buy my sister a copy for her birthday in June. I receive Yummly posts every day and I am actually looking forward to cooking my own
    food.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I can always count on your for your quality book suggestions!
      It seems like you have been away a long time Madame...is your volunteer post a longer one?

      Delete
    2. Might I add just a little comment, here? I'm also a Maisie Dobbs fan and am reading the last-but-one in the series and then the most recent one, if that makes sense. Wonderful books!
      Margaret P

      Delete
    3. I have read a few of Maisie Dobbs mystery novels and have the newest one on reserve at the local library,

      Delete
  7. What a lovely gift - and it sounds just perfect for you.
    I am finally able to enjoy some Spring flowers here in Toronto - yesterday was cool but sunny so a friend and I went to High Park to view the Cherry Blossoms and they were wonderful! We arrived before 8:30am and got very lucky with a parking spot right down by the main stand of trees - by the time we left cars were circling and circling trying to find a spot. The trees were gorgeous and I even managed a walk further afield where we saw many flowers tucked away in hidden spots. We then headed to the Grenadier Cafe and managed to get a table in our favourite waitress' section. She was telling us all about how crazy it had been over the weekend - it got to the the stage where the police had to close the park - and this park is about 2/3 the size of Central Park just to give you an idea of how big it is! She said the restaurant just couldn't keep up either - at first they had to ration the coffee - no refills and then they had to close down entirely because it had just gotten so out of hand - and this place only closes on Christmas and New Year's! After yesterday she was taking 2 days off and was not even going to turn on her phone!
    Have a wonderful week.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. My goodness that park sounds incredibly busy and so popular...I cannot imagine a cafe that has to ration their coffee...sounds overwhelmingly stressful for the owners and servers. Hopefully 2 days off will help...
      Enjoy your week Margie.

      Delete
  8. Meant to say - I've been reading a lot of mysteries lately - I follow Ian Hamilton's "Ava Lee" series and Louise Penny's "Inspector Gamache" series but I feel the need for a change at the moment so I'm about to start "Manderly Forever" a biography of Rebecca Du Maurier - I'll let you know what I think.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I am up to date on all Louise Penny's books...am planning to read a mystery set in Provence by L.M. Montgomery. It was recommended but I have to go out and find a copy of the book !

      Delete
  9. Can you share the make/model of your dandelion tool? We have a few and I would love to get them under control before our entire yard turns yellow! Getting the entire root is always the issue.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh I will...I need to get out to our shed to take a picture of it...will try and do that tomorrow.

      Delete
  10. Soup and a good book sounds heavenly and so cozy. I'll be reading your comments for suggestions because I need some new ones too! Xx

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hope you get a few book titles for your reading list...sounds like you had a fabulous time at the bloggers conference!

      Delete
  11. What a lovely gift and hygge is a trend I can totally relate to. ;-)
    As for reading recommendations - for me reading Jane Austen is always a delight. As is reading trashy romance novels. ;-) Especially when times are tough. Next up my reading list is the The Dark Enquiry from Deanna Raybourn. I've read all of her other Julia Grey novels. A very enjoyable read!
    Greetings from Austria!
    Tanja

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hello and welcome Tanja from Austria!
      Hyyge is currently a very trendy theme...
      Lise-Lotte wrote her book 2 years ago so she make have been ahead of the curve.
      Comfort at home, in the garden and eating comfort food at mealtime is on my radar for the foreseeable future!

      Delete
  12. Thank you so much for your kind words. I'm so glad you enjoyed my book! Amazing how evocative a scent is- I was moving a little bottle of Mom's perfume and of course opened the bottle to smell it again. One of my daughters commented that I smell like Mormor (mother's mother in Danish).

    I have been reading Looking at Mindfulness - twenty-five ways to live in the moment through art, by Christophe Andre.

    I had surgery on my leg a couple of weeks ago, and was ordered by the surgeon not to garden for three weeks. I think when he saw the look on my face- he quickly said- "I 'm sorry I know it's gardening season" However, I have been pulling the dandelions as they bloom putting it down to just "stretching" not actual gardening. There sure has been a lot of stretching around here-so many dandelions!

    Thanks again,
    Lise-Lotte

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh dear...the no gardening order must be a tough one to obey!
      But you need to be mindful of the doctor's advice for healing...I had frozen shoulder last year which really kept me out of the garden and it was not at all fun...I did hire some help which meant that the garden still looked presentable and the weeds did not "take over." Hope that you recover quickly...and thank you again for the book and the lovely cards.

      Delete
  13. Soup and a good book are ideal companions on a cold dismal day. Weather over here in the North of England is bizarre. One day we have beautiful sunshine the next we are back to Winter ---- brrrrr. Soup is back on the menu. The heating is turned back up.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Our weather has been odd here too...one day is sunny and then a few rainy grey days follow...we cannot quite get a run of decent weather. Still it is not snow so we have to be grateful that we are not shovelling the paths.

      Delete
  14. I just finished one yesterday on CHATSWORTH house in England written by The Duchess herself many moons ago........she went room by room describing the pieces and how she decorated the place.I LOVED IT!
    A BEAUTIFUL GIFT INDEED.....................................enjoy it with SOUP!
    XX

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I read that book too...loved the story! What a grand place to call home!

      Delete
  15. Miss Garnet’s Angel by Sally Vickers. From the Amazon website:

    After the death of her longtime friend and flatmate, retired British history teacher Julia Garnet does something completely out of character: She takes a six-month rental on a modest appartamento in Venice. An atheist, a Communist, and a virgin, Julia finds herself falling beneath the seductive spell of the city's intoxicating beauty and sensual religiosity. She befriends a young Italian boy and English twins who are restoring a fourteenth-century chapel. And she falls in love for the first time in her life with an art dealer named Carlo.

    Juxtaposing Julia's journey of self-discovery with the apocryphal tale of Tobias and the Archangel Raphael, Miss Garnet's Angel tells a lyrical, incandescent story of love, loss, miracles, and redemption . . . and of one woman's transformation and epiphany. Already a bestseller in England, it is "novel-writing at its finest and most eloquent . . . splendid . . . the sort of book that effortlessly, like angels, or sunlight on Venice's rippling waterways, casts brightness and beauty into those private and most shadowed recesses of the human heart" (The Christian Science Monitor).

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Sounds interesting! What a teaser of a review too...

      Delete
  16. Your blog has such lovely photos. I have never learned to be tidy. I think I am clean, but it never looks it because things are cluttered. I have been trying to learn from your blog how to start with a small area and make it more simple and beautiful; also my wardrobe. I am quite sure there are helpful lessons in dealing with grief to be absorbed along the way, so when it comes my turn I will be better equipped. Thanks for making this blog for us to follow.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I would like to share another blog with you....The Gardener's Cottage....Janet has the most organized and beautiful cottage and she is a lovely person...I think you will enjoy visiting her blog.

      Delete
  17. I would be interested in learning about your dandelion removing tool as well. I'm currently reading the latest China Bayles mystery by Susan Wittig Albert. Have you tried that series? I've enjoyed them for years and there are many in the series. They are set in Texas. China Bayles is the main character - she is a gardener with an herb shop married to an ex-detective. I find them quite enjoyable with many quirky characters.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Oh my I forgot to take a photo today...sorry will try and remember.
      I have not read that series...its sounds intriguing.

      Delete
    2. Here is the link to the puller....
      http://www.canadiantire.ca/en/pdp/fiskars-stand-up-weed-remover-0596739p.html

      Delete
  18. I love Kate Morton! Although she is an Australian writer, her books are very English in tone... which, as a devoted anglophile, I love. If you enjoy the Lake House you should try her other books. I read them all on my ipad(thank you ibooks!)
    regards, Jan Fawke

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I have read all her books so far and will wait patiently for her next one to be published...

      Delete
  19. Kate Morton.....my favorite all time author! I've read all three of her books and can't wait for the next one which I understand takes her 3-4 years to produce. But you can certainly tell it by the depth of her writing. You never know where she will end up!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Her books are very large tomes...and she weave and crafts an interesting mystery...worth waiting for!

      Delete
    2. There are many more than three books by Kate Morton.. about 6 I think. So you are in for a pleasant surprise

      Delete
  20. I love the story of the greenhouse and your beautiful flower shots. I, too, love soup for comfort.

    A book that I have recently finished and thoroughly enjoyed was The Beauty of Humanity Movement by Camilla Gibb. It is set in North Vietnam so takes the reader on a trip to the Far East to see through the lens of a culture quite different from our own. It is a story that has stayed with me.

    Honey Bee

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I read Sweetness in the Belly by Camilla Gibb so I would probably enjoy her newest book.

      Delete
  21. My goodness so many delicious looking soups. What a treat.

    I am currently reading what is so far a two part series by Julie McElwain about a female FBI agent that goes back through time to the Regency Period in England - a fun and engaging mysteries with a bit of romance of course.The first book is a Murder in Time and the second one which I am reading now, is A Twist in Time. I am also reading Becominging Leonardo by Mike Lankford, a little different take on about Leonard Da Vinci. I like to alter fiction with non-fiction books.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Time travel...can be tricky especially for me when I have to stay totally focused!
      It took me a wile to read The Time Travellers Wife but in the end it was well worth going slowly and paying attention!

      Delete
  22. The soups look wonderful. Like you, I'm a great soup fan and later today will make leek & potato (a non-blended version) which we love and have that with crusty baguette.
    As for books, where do I start? I'm a total bookaholic! I've just posted about two wonderful books on my own blog www.margaretpowling.com but these are more picture books than novels (they were originally meant for children but I think they are suitable for anyone as a good book can be read by anyone of any age, surely?)
    If you are enjoying Kate Morton I would therefore recommend Rachel Hore, all her books are a delight especially The Glass Painter's Daughter. Also the novels of Charlotte Betts starting with The Apothecary's Daughter. Her latest, set in the aftermath of the Great Fire of London and how jerry-building went on even in those days (for those don't know the phrase, jerry-building means badly-built) is called The House in Quill Court and is a real page-turner. Charlotte's novels are very well researched, so you will really feel you are in London more than two centuries ago.
    I would also recommend Judith Lennox's The Jeweller's Wife, a very atmospheric story. And anything by the marvellous historical novelist, Katharine McMahon. There you go, lots from which to choose.
    Margaret P
    www.margaretpowling.com

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I quite like the sound of The Glass Painter's Daughter and the Apothecary's Daughter...will add those to my list.
      Thank you Margaret!

      Delete
    2. Wow! Love to discover a new author. I particularly like the sound of Charlotte Betts!

      Delete
    3. Both you and Jan will love the Charlotte Betts' books, I am sure. Start with The Apothecary's Daughter as there is a follow up which is set 20 years later, The Painter's Apprentice. Then there is The Spice Merchant's Wife. They are all set in and around the Great Fire of London and the Plague, but are excellent reads. And Charlotte's latest, The House in Quill Court is about the rebuilding of London after the great fire and about how not all the builders were honest and honourable. Well researched and well written.

      Delete
  23. Lovely post with soup and gardening visions. I am currently reading Donna Leon's Earthly Remains and Brene Brown's Rising Strong (non-fiction). I just finished Hillbilly Elegy. I'd recommend all three--each quite different. Next on my list: The Women in the Castle by Jessica Shattuck. I also like Martin Walker's mysteries, set in the French countryside. The setting transports me for a bit and the characters and plots are solid--not overly cute and cozy, but not particularly gory and suspenseful. Don't get me wrong, I like suspense and gritty mysteries too, but sometimes the world is gritty enough!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I have added Donna's latest book to my list...and will check out the Walker mystery series in France!

      Delete
  24. This is the second time I've read of Lise-Lotte's book on a blog recently. I was not aware that she was a local author. I'll definitely be looking for the book when I visit Tanner's!
    Have you read Rhys Bowen's books? They are lighthearted mysteries. The series I like is her "Royal Spyness" books.
    I've enjoyed reading what others are engrossed in these days, too. So many good books.

    ReplyDelete
  25. I am just reading Hillbilly Elegy and it certainly is thought provoking.

    ReplyDelete