30 Minutes in the Life | April

12 Days of Bookstagram

Welcome to this month's 30 Minutes in the Life!  Instead of focusing on a particular 30 minutes of time, I wanted to share with you a collection of of images I took over 12 days this month.  

I absolutely adore Instagram and new creative challenges.  One of the blogs I follow, Anne Bogel's, Modern Mrs Darcy hosted a 12 days of Bookstagram challenge.  To be honest, I needed a little break from the big girl camera and wanted to dive into a challenge that focused on a love of books.  So with my trusty iPhone, I participated, contributed and engaged in some fun chats during this fun challenge on Instagram.  

Without further adieu.......

Please be sure to follow along the 30 Minutes in the Life blog circle.  Starting in Australia with the very talented Channon Williamson of Channon Williamson Photography.  CLICK HERE to see what she has been up to this month.

Day One | Current Read : Nina George's heartwarming novel, The Little Paris Bookshop. This book had a mix of many things I love: boats, books, wine, good conversations, love and France!

Day Two | Book Stack : Two photography books that were gifted to me over Christmas (People of London and Atlas of Beauty).  The portraits in both are just beautiful and inspires me to work on my portrait skills. Portraits is an area that has always been hit or miss for me.  And, for the icing on the stack, a book that I read time and time again, Jane Austen's Pride and Prejudice.

Day Three | Reading Spot : My main reading spot since moving to a tropical climate is our lanai.  The spot involves lots of sunshine and Vitamin D.  It took some time getting used to initially but I am falling in love more and more with how the light changes throughout the space during the day.  Off to the right is a pool with a small waterfall that occasionally lulls me to sleep. 

Day Four | Favorite Quote : Is it okay to have lots of favorites?  Because I have a library of them! A collection that inspires me and makes me say "yes"!  So, for this particular prompt I chose my latest favorite quote.  Once I reached my mid-forties, I came to the realization that I am indeed a foodie and love to savor the real stuff, enjoy life (all in moderation, of course!) and to only fill my life with the authentic.  Surrounding myself with the things I love, enjoy and appreciate.

Day Five | More Than Books : I chose to put together a few things I love: flowers, photography and good things to read.  I was first introduced to Lodestars Anthology after listening to one of my favorite podcasts, Tea and Tattle - hosted by Miranda Mills and Sophie Perdita.  Lodestars Anthology is an "independent magazine-meets-journal for curious travellers who long to be inspired, see the world and meet interesting characters along the road." 

Day Six | Flat Lay : I chose a special memory for this one.  March 2015 I traveled with my good friend, Melissa Stissi of Melissa Stissi Photography to attend Carolyn Mendelsohn's Wuthering Heights inspired photography residential. It took place in the heart of the Moors of Yorkshire.  We stayed at the amazing Ponden Hall and over several days, took part in a fantastic photography workshop.  It was an experience I will never forget - encompassing many of the things I love: travel, history, photography, adventure, good food and making new friends.  I learned so much about compelling portraiture from Carolyn Mendelsohn and to channel the lives and times of the Brontes during this experience was truly magical. I hope to return one day soon as the time flew by so quickly. I can definitely say, I left a little bit of my heart in Yorkshire.

Day Seven | On My Nightstand : My nightstand isn't always so neat - usually, you will find books, my daughter's hair bands, sticky notes with 1001 thoughts and reminders and most likely a cup of my favorite tea.  Wanted to highlight my current read at the moment.  Gone: A Girl, A Violin, A Life Unstrung by Min Kym.  It's a captivating memoir of a violin prodigy and world class violinist who has her beloved Stradivarius stolen in the blink of an eye.  After this, she is simply unable to play or function.  It is also a journey about what it means to be so entwined with her instrument and rediscovering her voice after losing what she calls her "soulmate". 

Day Eight | Book and Beverage : I recently learned that Jane Austen not only enjoyed drinking beer but was a bit of a brew master as well! From tea, French wines, champagne, mead and spruce beer - she was a pretty cool 18th century foodie.  Many of her books and personal letters make references to food and drink.  During a little getaway with my Mr, I had some time to get lost in my favorite book by Jane Austen.  In the old days (my 4 seasons days) my beverage of choice would have been a hot cup of tea or a glass of wine - however, as we reside now in a tropical climagte, the Mr chose an ice cold beer!  I'm hoping Jane Austen would have been proud.

Day Nine | At the Bookstore : Question of the day at my local bookstore.  My wish list is pretty big and will most likely take years to get through.  So many stories and adventures await!

Day Ten | Books I Want to Read : These are a collection of EM Forster books I bought back during my teen/college years. I was first introduced to the works of EM Forster via the cinema.  As a young girl, I fell in love with pretty much all of the Merchant Ivory films - which in turn led me to these books and places to travel to one day.  I never did read all of these in full, so this year am hoping to reconnect with these stories once again.

Day Eleven | Bibliophile Life : Books and a bit of vitamin sea kind of day. The bibliophile life is very sweet indeed.

Day Twelve | Shelfie : Here are the new kids on the block for our shelf.  I have this thing for Emma Bridgewater pottery and books.  I was first introduced to Emma Bridgewater when I was marrying a Brit, way back when.  Me and the Mr were gifted our first set of plates, tea sets and serving dishes during our wedding.  The Black Toast and Marmalade collection now fills our home and has lasted 16 years of marriage.  We do love tea.....a lot! So these recent historical additions by Emma Bridgewater are going to be put to good use.  I'm also looking forward to diving into my new book as well - Toast and Marmalade and Other Stories by Emma Bridgewater.  Her quintessentially English pottery holds a special place in my heart.