Sunday, November 21, 2010

Blog Anniversary giveaway!

Tomorrow, November 22, is the fourth anniversary of the day I began writing this blog, these letters. I love the idea of a giveaway on one's blog anniversary. It is such a nice way to say thank you for my dear readers. There are two books which I am offering as a giveaway this year. One was given to me by a wonderful Canadian internet friend with whom I was on an email list for a long time. She and I have stayed in touch, and recently she sent me a magical parcel of books and magazines which included a book called Fine Lines. She remembered me talking about it years ago. Since that time, I have bought my own copy so I told her that I would offer her gift as a giveaway on my blog. I did a little entry about clotheslines, with a mention of the book here. The second book is one I recently bought, called A Year With Emerson with a quote for each day of the year.

Fine Lines is a fun-filled book about a much overlooked aspect of North American culture: clotheslines. If you have ever driven through communities and noticed all the lovely laundry on the backyard lines and wondered about the colourful art of hanging up clothes, you are about to find out the stories behind those fine lines.

While other books pin their success on airing dirty laundry, this volume is a refreshing change. It's a book about clean laundry hanging in a gentle summer breeze... as well as winter laundry frozen stiff as boards on the line in the backyard. Mrs. Clothesline examines in every detail the different kinds of lines, the various hanging methods and the personality profiles of those who participate in this age-old daily ceremony. Once you've read this engaging book, you'll never look at a drying line of wash the same way again.

Cindy Etter-Turnbull writes of the unsurpassed magic of the best drying days, dos and don'ts for beginners and veterans, clothesline props, clothesline disasters and other related subject matter. Fine Lines covers it all. She includes true life accounts of clothesline tragedies and triumphs from people across the country. Fine Lines is the book that will revolutionize the way you look at laundry. It is intended for amateurs as well as professionals, men as well as women. This book will put to rest any questions you may have about the fine art of hanging out the wash.

Probably nobody knows more about clotheslines than Cindy Etter-Turnbull. Cindy, and her basket of clothes, has spent many fun-filled evenings in homes and community halls throughout Nova Scotia collecting stories and anecdotes about clotheslines. She has been featured by Stuart McLean on CBC Radio's Vinyl Café, and has appeared on Wayne Rostad's On the Road Again.

Born in Windsor, Nova Scotia, Cindy and her husband proudly possess two actively used clotheslines. Cindy spends her spare time training the family dog, gardening and trying to out-fish her husband. Her love of tradition, beauty, orderliness, and humour has led to her fascination with "fine lines."

"A chief event of life is that day on which we have encountered a mind that startled us." A Year with Emerson is a feast of 365 such days, designed to celebrate the bicentenary of the "Sage of Concord." Known throughout the world for his cogent, epigrammatic writing, admired as the "George Washington of American Literature," his work is even more piquant and enriching in bigger doses. In this delightful display of his genius, the daily almanac entries take us to the heart of his ideas and philosophy. Some were written on the very day in which they appear in the book, some are speculations and musings of the season and the natural world, but all are unfailingly wise, still relevant to our modern times.

As a philosopher, essayist, poet, and lecturer, Emerson's mind ranged across the universe even as he traveled the length and breadth of the United States and Europe. With him as a companion and guide, we meet the ideas and personalities he championed and encountered, from Lincoln to John Muir, from Carlyle to Montaigne, and, of course, Emerson's own close New England circle of Hawthorne, Thoreau, Margaret Fuller, and the Alcotts. With company like this and the scope of Emerson's vision, we can read the entries as a daily inspiration and tonic, or simply enjoy this extended daybook as a revelation of a visionary, incorruptible, and surprisingly modern mind.

Richard Grossman is a psychotherapist, medical educator, essayist, and former publisher who has been reading and studying Emerson for over forty years. He lives in Salisbury, Connecticut.

If you would like to have one of these books in your own library, you may leave your comment on any posting beginning today, November 21 through next Sunday, the 28th. It is very important that you tell me which one you want. I will draw two names on Monday, November 29, and will send the books anywhere in the world.


  1. How begin each day with a quote from Mr. Emerson! Thank you for reminding me of his precious words! I would cherish this book! Congratulations on a Great Year of blogging.

  2. Oh Nan a lovely giveaway:)
    For me, it would have to be Fine Lines. A) Hanging my clothes out is my very favourite household job B) Whenever we take a road trip anywhere, I always check out the clotheslines as we drive past, I can't help it, I just love 'em.
    C) We listen to vinyl cafe every sunday at noon on the CBC, and have seen Stuart McLean in concert twice in Ottawa...even funnier and more poignant in person, D) Wayne Rostad lives about 15 minutes from me, and is a big part of our local community, and E) if I don't win it, I'll probably have to buy it!!!

    Thank you for the generous giveaway :)

  3. I'd like to win the book about clotheslines, please - and Nova Scotia, what a bonus

    I'm reading a Deborah Crombie murder mystery now after your review - thanks, Nan

  4. I was looking through old comments today and saw you left one on a quilt blog post. I'm so glad you enjoyed a Graceful Death. I loved living in Cornwal and enjoy writing about it.

  5. Congratulations! 4 years--that's significant! I wonder what the average life of a blog is? I've not had my second anniversary yet, but I've observed many blogs "fold" in my relatively short blog-life...

    Emerson would be MY choice should I be selected for your generous give-away! Thank you for sponsoring it!

  6. Hi Nan,
    First of all, congratulations on this milestone. I am realizing through my own journey that it is no small thing to blog so faithfully for four years. I haven't even reached my first year and am flagging in zeal:(
    Thank you for all your wonderful posts, so thoroughly enjoyed by so many!
    It is funny you should share these books as I have both of them, as well as the other book you mentioned in your clothesline post, which I just visited.
    I had never seen that post and really enjoyed it. The clothesline was one of the first things I posted about when I began my blog, and shared a poem that you may already know...
    You don't have to add my name, but I did want to leave a comment to congratulate you!
    Thank you again for a great four years!

  7. Four years! Three cheers and congratulations to you.

    I would so love to own Emerson and have him speak to me daily and would love to have my name put in the hat for a chance. Thank you so very much. Penny

  8. Nan, congratulations on 4 years. I am at 2 and wonder if I can continue. Hanging my clothes out is one of the most relaxing things I do. If I had a choice of books would like the Emerson. May just buy the clothes line book.

  9. Happy Blogiversary, Nan! I'm so glad you've continued with this beautiful blog for four years. Here's to many more!

    No need to enter me in the drawing. I have far too many books at this moment. :)

  10. Congratulations on four years of splendid writing. During that time I have tried many of your recipes, read many of your book recommendations and learned a great deal about your life on the Hill Farm. I am now watching the development of your daughter's home with great interest.

    I love to see a line of washing blowing in the wind. I've always been interested in the different regional methods of hanging the washing out here in UK and I would love to read about the different traditions in North America.

  11. Happy Blogiversary and many more! I'll take a chance at commenting for the Emerson book. Looks great. Keep up the writing, Nan. I always enjoy visiting your place.

  12. No need to enter me in your delightful give-aways (I agree, it's such a nice way to celebrate!). I just want to say I'm glad you've blogged for four years, and that you decided to stay. Your blog is always so beautiful and heartfelt.

  13. Nan, a wonderful giveaway. Happy Anniversary, by the way. I'm so glad you decided to stay with us online. Since I have to choose, I choose the Emerson. Here's to another year of great blogging for you and a first year of blogging for me. :)

  14. this looks just wonderful fine lines would be my first choice thanks for the giveaway minsthins at optonline dot net

  15. I think I would like the Fine lines book. Although I like Emerson very much, the Fine Lines book description reminded me of my childhood, when the ritual of hanging up clothes on the line was a wonderful one and the bringing in of the sun baked sweet smelling clothes was a delight.

  16. Please put me in the hat for the drawing. I would love to have the Emmerson book of quotes but I would also like to read about clotheslines. At any rate what fun for the chance. Cheers.

  17. Happy Blogiversary!! A Year with Emerson would be my choice! Thanks!

  18. Happy Blog Anniversary!!!

    I would book about clotheslines need something to make me think of summer this winter

  19. Congratulations on your blogaverssary -- and I am so glad you are on your way to celebrating #5 (and that you decided to stay). I'm going back to read your first clothesline post right now.

    I'd like to win that book so I will enter. I was so thrilled to find out that it is OK to hang clothes at our little house in Ft Myers, as I hadn't been able to do so for years. It is so great to be able to take advantage of the sunshine. And I remember when I used to hang out diapers and have them frozen on the line (half a century ago, when our daughter was born near Lakeview Oregon)-- so it would be fun to read more stories about the tradition.

    (I think I'll buy it if/when I don't win it ;>)

  20. Four years! What a milestone.
    Tomorrow, November 22 is my 53rd wedding anniversary; another milestone.
    I'd be pleased if you added me to your drawing for the Emerson book.

  21. Lovely giveaway, Nan. Happy fourth blogiversary! If I am fortunate enough to win I would like to receive Fine Lines. I grew up with four long well used clotheslines in my back yard. I remember them well.

  22. Does your giveaway extent to readers from outside the US? If yes, I'd be happy if you included me in your drawing :-)
    Should I be the lucky winner, I'd prefer "Fine Lines".

    Happy Blog Anniversary!! I am truly glad you still keep blogging after four years. I think I have started following your blog some time in 2009, and I hope there will be many, many more entertaining, informative, funny and touching entries from you.

  23. Happy anniversary. Well both books look really interesting.I love Emmerson's books I have one about walking. However, I love nothing more than seeing a clothes line full of clothes drying in the wind; so perhaps I would have to go with this one. But really I would love to win either one.

  24. What a generous idea Nan. I would love the Emerson.

  25. As I have already been the recipient of one of your generous giveaways, please don't enter me to win the books, but please do accept my congratulations on your blogiversary. I'm always so content after reading your entries. It's just like sitting down for a cup of tea and a chat with a friend.

  26. Many congratulations on four years!
    Oh, Nan, I would love Fine Lines - a cousin of mine recently moved to a property where she was again able (after five years in her previous property where she was unable) to hang out her washing! Perhaps only women enjoy seeing a line filled with washing? I have to hang mine out neatly, all the tea towels together, all the pillow cases together! A bit like library books lined up from A-Z!
    thank you for such an opportunity for a giveaway - but is this only for USA and Canada, or can anyone join in?
    Margaret P

  27. Delighted you made the fourth year. I don't know either author, but would love to start the day with something to ponder over through the day - in between teaching 30 five/six year olds - so it would have to be the Emerson book if picked in your draw Nan.
    Um, may I ask what 'faro' is in your recipe please? Thanks.

  28. Oh, Happy Birthday Nan! I do so enjoy my visits to you here. It's a lovely giveaway you're hosting. The Emerson book would be my choice!

  29. Congratulations on your anniversary! I'm so glad you are still carrying on and sharing your world with all of us.

    The Emerson would be a nice addition to my daily routine. Crossing my fingers!

  30. What a nice way to celebrate your blog's anniversary! I would love to put my name in the hat for the Fine Lines book. My mother-in-law, who lives in England, has tried to teach me the art of hanging clothes on a line, therefore, that book would mean a lot to me. Thanks! Kay Guest

  31. I would love the one about clothes lines. I only think of Kathleen Norris' Quotidian Mysteries when I think about a book about hanging out clothes. It is one of my favorite things to do! So Fine Lines.......and thank you!

  32. please remove my name from the giveaway list

    I found a copy of Fine Lines at the library yesterday, and I'm enjoying it now as I lay in bed with a nasty bout of flu

    oh, how I wish I had a clothesline now - I've had all the different styles that she mentioned - but, alas, now I live in an apartment.

    thanks, Nan, and congratulations on four fine years of blogging

  33. Thank you, Nan! Ohhhh, this is a tough one. My first response was Emerson but on second thought ... I think I would try Fine Lines. You know, I'm wondering if I didn't see this lady on the telly some years ago. She was so much fun and would hunt around for people's clothes lines and even try to "fix" them undetected.
    Thanks again and happy blogiversary! :)

  34. Aha! It was On the Road Again that I had seen. Too fun!

  35. Hanging out the wash became something very precious to me when I found that my Mom had written family and friends names on her wooden clothes pins and would pray for the person as she hung up the clothes (my name was on several clothespins as she felt I needed a lot of prayer and she was right!). She is 90 yrs. old now and the dryer is being used and I keep one of the clothespins with my name on it in my night table drawer. I would love the Emerson book but right now it would be fun to share the clothesline book with her.

  36. Wow!! Your fourth anniversary! That's a lifetime in blogging terms. Congratulations!

    I would love to start each day with Emerson. THanks so much for your generous giveaway.


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