Monday, May 4, 2009

On Commonplace Books and Cottonwood Buds

Dear Reader,

Thank you for stopping by Merry Hearts Cottage today; we hope your weekend was lovely, no matter what the weather.

We older girls have been perusing our collection of May issues of Victoria Magazine (Which collection we would seriously consider running back into a burning building to save), which has been growing through the years, thanks to thrift stores, eBay, and our own subscription. We are so thankful that such a feminine, beautiful magazine (though of course, not perfect) was created; one so full of culture and history. We have learned so much about authors, painters, home decor, and the social life of the Victorian era through this magazine! It is an education in itself. We only wish we had discovered it sooner, but better late than never!

One of the lovely ideas presented in Victoria is the Commonplace Book, which is nothing more than a scrapbook of quotations and sometimes paper ephemera, illustrations, etc. We have always kept a quotation book, but the Commonplace Book is a little more, well, uncommon in its structure. It is more of a work of art, if you will.
(Feel free to click and enlarge)

Even Tasha Tudor's dolls have their own Commonplace Book, which is too small to be illustrated, but is beautifully bound.

My Commonplace Book is not quite as nice as I'd like it be, but here is a poem I copied from my friend "Lady Farmer" on her "Lady Farmer's Parables" blog:

My friend Jewels has some great ideas on her blog of creating a REAL commonplace book (Or is it an Everything Book?), which consists of poetry, notes, to dos, and daily journal entries, which I've done before, too. I think it wise to carry a little notebook that will allow us to jot down the poems, quotations, etc. that speak to us, and then copy them down more carefully when time allows (Sundays are nice for this.). What better heirloom to pass down that the things that influenced and shaped us during our lifetime!

As for the cottonwood buds, here is a good explanation of their benefits, although you will have to excuse her somewhat colorful language in spots. I had heard about them briefly during my studies at Dr. Christopher's School of Natural Healing, but this lady (and others) seem to use the oil far more extensively than did Dr. Christopher. I still haven't strained my oil off, but when I do, I'm going to melt beeswax, then add the oil, and essential oils of eucalyptus and camphor, for a chest rub. It will function for aromatherapy, if nothing else!

May you have a joyous day, exploring all the new and wonderful things that are part of this beautiful world.




"I believe a most serious problem for the American people to consider is the cultivation of better manners. It is the most noticeable, the most principle, defect in American civilization."
~Oscar Wilder (From Emma Birdwhistle's Commonplace Book)



  2. Querida Marqueta,

    Buenas tardes:)

    Yo tengo also similar a tu libro comun. El mio, tiene muchas fotos que he cortado the revistas y tambien escribo recetas y poemas que me gustan. Ahora mismo, tengo mas the tres con que trabajo todo el tiempo.

    Esto es una buena idea...gracias por compartir con nosotros.

    Te deseo un grandioso dia :)


    Lady M

  3. Marqueta, I've been wanting to comment on this all day, but today was a work day. :) I am so glad you posted about your commonplace book. I saw a comment about it on your blog and I was thinking the same thing, hoping you'd tell us about it! Thank you for sharing your ideas. It sounds like a lovely thing to keep. I keep journals and scrapbooks, but you've described what's been appealing to my heart lately for both personal recording and homeschool recording.


  4. What a lovely idea! What a precious keepsake this could be.

  5. I SO love Victoria magazine and have since I was a child, I wish I still had my collection (I shall have to work at building it back up again).

    I have created such commonplace books throughout my life and your beautiful description and images inspires me to do so again.

    Ah yes, my colorful language... it does get away from me sometimes ;)



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