"To see a world in a grain of sand,
And a heaven in a wild flower,
Hold infinity in the palm of your hand
And eternity in an hour."

From "Auguries of Innocence"

by William Blake

Friday, 29 September 2017

Recent Reading, Afternoon Tea and Moth Night

Recent Reading

A few books I have read recently......

I was fortunate enough to "win" on Twitter this beautiful book about The Churches Conservation Trust churches.

The CCT conserves over 340 churches which are no longer used for regular worship by the Church of England. The book features 36 of the churches the Trust conserves with photographs and descriptions by Matthew Byrne. It is a book to treasure and it certainly made me want to visit as many of the churches as I can.

I think the "Moth Catcher" is the best book in the Vera Stanhope series so far - really enjoyed.

"Hidden Histories - A Spotter's Guide to the British Landscape" by Mary-Ann Ochota is a superb book. I read it from cover to cover and will now use it extensively as a reference book. It covers a huge number of features you might spot in the landscape, So if you want to know about Long Barrows, Hillforts, castles, fields, stone monuments of all types, Roman Roads, Ancient Trackways, stone tools, how to age a hedge or spot Ancient Woodland, field names, Ancient trees, village place and pub names, commons, deserted villages, how to age a church, etc. etc......... the list is endless!, this is the book for you.

Another hugely enjoyable Ruth Galloway story - what will I do when I have finished this series?

My third Maisie Dobbs novel and I think this is the best so far.

Afternoon Tea

E was given a voucher for Alice in Wonderland Afternoon Tea at Cafe Isabella in Solihull for her birthday and yesterday she treated me. (After a short break I have re-commenced arranging work at my mother's house - sadly, it is never-ending and I think she thought I was in dire need of cheering up!!)

The cafe is full of vintage items and the tea table was laid out in such a delightful and charming manner. The food was delicious and there was a huge selection. In fact we never managed to eat the slices of cake and they were kind enough to provide a container to bring them home.

I am not sure how many people who live locally read this blog but if you are near Solihull this cafe in Drury Lane by Mell Square is well worth a visit. They serve delicious food.

Marvellous Moth Night at St Patrick's Church, Earlswood

A few weeks ago I was asked if I could take my moth trap along and lead a group of participants in the above event. It is always a good event very well organised by Tony Philp, on behalf of the Earlswood Wildlife Partnership, with delicious cakes made by his wife Barbara and it is a joy to see the interest shown by people who take part in learning more about moths and trying to identify some caught in the traps that evening.

Sadly neither D or I remembered to take our cameras so I don't have any photos of the actual event.

Setaceous Hebrew Character was the most common moth caught during the evening and other species trapped included Square-spot Rustic, Large Yellow Underwing, Snout, Grey Pine Carpet, Lunar Underwing, Brimstone and Lesser Yellow Underwing.


Anonymous said...

You have been lucky in your book choices, haven't you?

The Tea Party looks good.

And the mothing evening was a success?

Ragged Robin said...

Toffeeapple Thank you - yes they were all great books and I must thank Rosie from Corners of my Mind for introducing me to the Vera Stanhope and Ruth Galloway books.

Yes thank you - the moth evening was a success so lovely to see the interest shown by the people who came along.

Rosie said...

The Beautiful Churches book looks wonderful and the Hidden Histories books sounds fascinating. Glad you are still enjoying Ruth, Maisie and Vera. I enjoyed The Moth Catcher too in the Vera series. I have the new one The Seagull reserved at the library, I was 26 in the queue when I first reserved it I'm down to 15 now so may get it by the end of October:) Sorry to read of your on-going problems with your mother's house - no wonder you needed cheering up and the afternoon tea looks delightful. The moth night sounds like an interesting event to be involved in:)

Ragged Robin said...

Rosie - Thanks so much. Sorry forgot to mention in my reply to Toffeeapple that you also introduced me to Maisie Dobbs. Do hope there are some fast readers in that library reserved list!! To be honest I really ought to make more use of my library especially for fiction. One day when I have more time I will also go along and try and get on a computer because I believe you can access some family history websites to save you taking out your own subscription.

Thanks for the good wishes re: my mother's house.

The moth night was great fun :)

Rustic Pumpkin said...

Well done on the win. Quite a useful book for you. Thank you for the tip that CCT is on Twitter. I followed them on FB but am no longer on FB, so have just given them a follow on Twitter.
Your afternoon tea looked delicious!

Bovey Belle said...

Great post - great books, great cakes, great everything!

I wonder if you could identify a moth caterpillar for me? Several have been growing on and eating my roses - I thought they were misplaced cabbage whites but not the size they are NOW! I will put a photo on my blog in a moment and hope you can identify for me.

I think The Moth Catcher was the first of her novels I read. Very good.

Ragged Robin said...

Deborah RusticPumpkin - thank you and so pleased the tip re: twitter was useful. Not on FB myself as am happy with Twitter and what with that and blogging hard to find time for FB as well! Looking at OH's timeline I don't think it is for me!!

Bovey Belle - Thankyou so much. Yes - will check your blog in a second (just have to dry up first and empty and reload washing machine first!!) Will do my best to help :)

SeagullSuzie said...

The cafe looks wonderful and a lovely treat. I've not read Ann Cleeves novels but did get her Shetland (non fiction) book from the library. It has beautiful photos and makes a great read.

Ragged Robin said...

SeagullSuzie - Thank you - it is a really lovely little cafe - full of "vintage" items. Will have to look out for the non-fiction Shetland book - sounds wonderful :)

Amanda Peters said...

Lovely books , and thanks to you I have the Hidden Histories book but still need to make the time to read through it properly.

Afternoon tea looks so nice, would rather do this than go out for the evening.

The moth event looked good too, sadly i don't think it's been a very good year due to the weather and numbers suddenly doped of in September.
Of to read your last post now...
Amanda xx

Ragged Robin said...

Amanda Peters - Thank you and so glad you bought the Hidden Histories book - it took me months to read as it was so detailed in order to take it all in I only read small sections at a time.

Tend to agree over afternoon tea especially now the darker nights are arriving!!

I haven't trapped much at all this year - really must get my act together and put trap out weekly next year!

Pam said...

What a lovely book to win! Should I ever be in the area the cafe is on my list to visit, I love it!

Ragged Robin said...

Pam - Thank you. I was really chuffed re: the book :) Cafe is lovely - they have superb butterfly wallpaper in the loo:)

Millymollymandy said...

Ooh thank you, I have just seen Keith's Christmas present! The book by Mary Ann Ochota. I recognise her name as she was on Time Team for a while. I think he'll love the book and it sounds really interesting. That tea looks delicious, especially as I have not eaten much in the way of cakes or desserts lately as I'm trying to stop continually putting on weight (think it's one of the meds I take causing it). I did pig out on a recent trip to England though, of course!) Finally, shame on you for forgetting your camera at the moth night!!! lol, sounds like you had a fun time anyway. :-)

Ragged Robin said...

Millymollymandy - Thank you and I am so pleased the post has given you a Christmas present idea - the book is just stuffed full of information :)

Sorry to hear about the weight problem - tbh I eat far too many cakes :(

I did mean to remind my son - I had enough to take with the trap, extension lead, transformer,pots and id guides but totally forgot until half way there that I hadn't taken my camera and he should have brought the Canon along!!

Midmarsh John said...

Hidden Histories looks as though it could be a useful addition to my reference collection

Ragged Robin said...

Midmarsh John -Thank you. It really is a superb book stuffed full of information.

Midmarsh John said...

Just ordered a copy from the Book Depository. Should be here early next week.

Ragged Robin said...

Midmarsh John - I really hope you enjoy it as much as I did. It will be an excellent reference book :)