Thursday, March 24, 2011

Lost in Austen

(As in Jane Austen; I didn't misspell the city in Texas.)  This was brought on several weeks ago while the hubs and I were channel surfing one evening.  We caught the end of Pride and Prejudice (Kiera Knightley version) and he was so kind to indulge me in watching it.  Seeing it again made me realize that I had never read anything written by Jane Austen.  I set about to remedy that when we stopped by The Bookworm during my family’s visit so dad could browse. 

So here it's time to explain some of the "hate relationship" with technology.  I will probably never own a Kindle or Nook or whatever other brand of e-reader is out there.  I have an incredible fondness for books, especially vintage hardcovers.  I will, occasionally, judge a book by its cover.  That being said, I was thrilled that a particularly nice hardcover copy (though not vintage) of Pride and Prejudice availed itself to me. 

It’s been quite some time since I’ve engaged in reading for pleasure and had forgotten how engrossing an interesting book can be.  Not only have I finished Pride and Prejudice (twice), but Sense and Sensibility and Mansfield Park have also been finished.  I'm not a fan of modern romance novels and never pictured myself reading them, past or present.  To soothe my ego, I'm telling myself that I'm reading "classic literature" and not indulging in Georgian romance novels.  Quite pathetic, I know.  I’ll be starting Emma in the future and still have to acquire Persuasion.  Once those are finished, I believe I’ll move on to the sisters Brontë. 

However.  Before any more books are started, I have some work to do.  While I will never, ever say that reading is a waste of time, I noticed how little I get done when I'm determined to finish a book.  The penalty I've imposed upon myself is that I can't start another book until I've finished the gumpaste flowers.

So far, none of them are beautiful, but they are in works in progress.  The large one that will go on top of the cake will look similar to the pink flower on the top of the dress cake my friend, Tracie, and I did in Pastry class.  This one is pale yellow and will be brushed with dry orange color on the edges of the petals.  I am going to make sure this time that I let it dry thoroughly before removing all the tissues.  My lack of patience did teach me a lesson when I made the last one.

I had also planned on using 12 daffodils on the bottom, square tier.  I'd not made these previously but always wanted to try them.  While the original plan was for 12 daffodils, I'm now thinking 8.  If they don't get easier as I go, that number may be reduced even further.  They looked so simple in the book!  I still need to make some royal icing to pipe in the center and add the stamens.  And hopefully not break them in the process.  That would be tragic.  I don't need tragedy.  I'll leave that to the novels.