About Me

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Married with one teenager. Love reading most genre, ok not scary stuff!!! Interested in genealogy. Have been tracing my family history since 1985.

My Family & Other Animals

Tuesday, January 10, 2017

The Last Painting of Sara De Vos by Dominic Smith


I read this book in about a week. I had decided to get it out on my ipad from the library as an ebook. When I got to about page 380 my library membership for some inexplicable reason expired!!!!!  I lost access to the book and was running around like a loony tune trying to get it back. I was desperate!!

After getting it back the next day I proceeded to finish it as quickly as possible before any other disaster of such magnitude could occur again.

I found this a really rapid moving story. It was written in three (3) different time's  - 1651 in the Netherland's with Sara de Vos, wife, mother and painter; 1957 Brooklyn, New York with Ellie Shipley, aspiring artist, cash poor student; and 2000 Sydney, Australia with a mature Ellie (Eleanor) Shipley.

Ellie Shipley does painting restorations and is asked to paint a forgery. The painting is none other than Sara de Vos's 'at the edge of the wood'. The story gives a window into the life of Sara de Vos in 1650's Netherland. It also tells us about a confused, angry and cash poor university student and how she paints her forgery, before moving to the year 2000 when a mature Ellie Shipley is confronted with her past. The story moved effortlessly between each time and I had no trouble following the story.

I so enjoyed this book and am definitely going to re-read this again. Next time at the library I will be browsing for some of Dominic Smith's other books.

Here is a link to his homepage
and Facebook

Friday, December 16, 2016

Elizabeth Byrne: My Recollections #6

Mum and Dad at Lisa's wedding

Dear Mum, I woke up thinking of you and missing you like crazy. You passed away 11 years ago today, but it seems like yesterday.

In this photo you are dancing with the love of your life and doing something that you were so good at - dancing.

I sat and had my breakfast reading back on my previous recollections, with tears in my eyes and a lump in my throat.

I clock watched this morning and when it was 8.50am the time seemed to slow down: 8.59am was when you passed away on the 16th December 2005.

I miss you just as much now as I did then. I thought you would be here forever!! I wish I had spent more time with you telling you how much I loved you.
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The images of you in my mind are all mixed up. I prefer to remember you how you used to be before Alzheimer's got you in its grasp. In my mind you are still vibrant and full of life, not bed ridden and lost to us. 

As I sit here in tears writing to a memory, I try to remember all the love and laughter we had, but the sadness just creeps in and drowns it all out. 

We had a fabulous child hood and those memories will live in me forever. I just wish we had been able to look into the future to see how you would disappear from us. Even though it was gradual we thought we would have YOU for longer, but the disease grasped you and dragged you under its spell. Obliterating a wonderful mind - smart, funny and loving; leaving behind a crumbling facade.

I miss you - I love you - mwah xoxox