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Month in review

Acting Class: Take a Seat by Milton Katselas
All in Fun by Jerry Oltion
The Cat Who Went Up the Creek by Lilian Jackson Braun
The Christmas Box by Richard Paul Evans
Dance of Shadows by Fred Chappell
Diary of a Dead Man by Walter Krumm
Earth Odyssey by Mark Hertsgaard
eNursery Rhymes by Mother Mouse
Ella: A Baby Elephant's Story by Kathleen Duey
Emily Waits for Her Family by Carol Zelaya
The Exchange by Inga C. Ellzey
Festival of Deaths by Jane Haddam
For the Love of St. Nick by Garasamo Maccagnone
Forgive My Trespassing by Cynthia Blomquist Gustavson
A Garden from a Hundred Packets of Seed by James Fenton
The Illusion by Tony Kushner and Pierre Corneille
Jimmy Buffet: The Man from Margaritaville Revealed by Steve Eng
The Little Lame Prince and His Travelling Cloak by Dinah Muloc Craik
Mojo Hand by Greg Kihn
The Monopoly Man by Barry B. Longyear
Nana Volume 2 by Ai Yazawa
One Fish, Two Fish, Red Fish, Blue Fish by Dr. Seuss
The Perfect Infestation by Carol Emshwiller
Rising Waters by Patricia Ferrara
The Scarlet Letter by Nathaniel Hawthorne
The Sea by John Banville
Seafarer's Blood by Albert E. Cowdrey
Shadow on the Stones by Moyra Caldecott
Signatures of Grace edited by Thomas Grady and Paula Huston
Silence is Golden by Penny Warner
"Slowly, Slowly, Slowly" Said the Sloth by Eric Carle
The Tall Stones by Moyra Caldecott
The Temple of the Sun by Moyra Caldecott
Tsunami by Gordon Gumpertz
Written on the Knee by Dr. Theodore Electris and Helen Electrie Lindsay (translator)

Don Quixote:
Q and Sancho Panza Strike Back
Harold and Kumar
The La Mancha Story
Disarmed and Dangerous

The Classics

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5 stars: Completely enjoyable or compelling
4 stars: Good but flawed
3 stars: Average
2 stars: OK
1 star: Did not finish

Reading Challenges

Beat the Backlist 2024

Ozathon: 12/2023-01/2025

Canadian Book Challenge: 2023-2024

Chicken Prints
Paintings and Postcards

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A Garden from a Hundred Packets of Seed: 01/09/09

James Fenton is an English poet and a gardener. His delightful book 0374528772?A Garden from a Hundred Packets of Seed offers advice on gardening from just seeds and gives a list of his 100 favorite types of plants to grow from seeds.

I fell in love with the book before I even started reading it. The very first illustration in the book is one of a California Poppy (Eschscholzia californica). Then in Chapter One: Flowers and their Colors, Fenton includes the California state flower among his favorite flowers that "fire a gun" for their bright colors. Apparently bright colors (oranges and reds) are frowned upon in British gardens. Here in California, the brighter the better: orange, red, yellow, you name it. Of course the poppy grows just about everywhere: along the highways, in sidewalk cracks, in rubble and anywhere else were there is a little dirt, sunshine and a little water.

Fenton clearly loves gardening. He isn't a garden snob, except about soil and the importance of good top soil and lots of it. He thinks anyone and everyone should try gardening even if it's just letting a vine of morning glory climb up a fire escape (as he saw in New York City).

With a limited budget, Sean and I do most of our gardening from seeds. A number of Fenton's suggestions are in our tiny patio garden. We have nasturtiums, sweet peas, California poppies, various sunflowers, basil (though not grown from seed), dill and parsley (which reseeds itself every six months or so).

Fenton's final advice is have fun but follow the planting instructions on the seed packets for best results.


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