Monday, December 12, 2011

'Tis Awesome to Give AND Receive

After sitting out last year and being rather sad about it, I made sure to sign up for the Book Blogger Holiday Swap this year. I chose an international swap and I am so incredibly glad that I did! The gifts that I bought went to Montreal, to Tina of Bookshipper (which she posted about today if you're curious). Thankfully she loved them all!

The gifts that were bought for me arrived today and I was floored when I saw that they came from South Africa! The lovely Robyn (of The Book Club Blog and I'm So Not A Blogger) sent some absolutely thoughtful gifts and I couldn't appreciate them more. Here are the wrapped gifts, each with a pressed-tin magnet attached.

First, there was "LAUGH", with a copy of The Pursuit of Laughter: Essays, Articles, Reviews & Diary of The Most Controversial Mitford Sister by Diana Mosley. I know that Robyn looked at my wishlist and saw that I was wanting to start in with the Mitfords. I know little to nothing about them and I'm so glad that she chose this for me!

Next, there was "LOVE" and a cookbook -- The South African Illustrated Cookbook by Lehla Eldridge.
The South African Illustrated Cookbook is a compilation of recipes dear to South Africans from all walks of life and traditions. It includes Xhosa, Cape Malay, Zulu, English, Indian, Afrikaans, Portuguese and new South African dishes.
I can't wait to try some of these recipes, especially once I figure out what "mealie meal" is (I think it's a fine corn meal -- anyone?).

Then there was "HOPE" and Robyn sent a favorite holiday book of hers from Norwegian author Jostein Gaarder -- The Christmas Mystery. It has time travel in it which makes me very excited! I love that she wanted to share a favorite book with me.

Everything was wonderful and these gifts certainly brought more laughter, love and hope into this season for me!

Finally, there was one more small item that didn't make it into these photos because it was already on the Christmas tree --

Thank you so much, Robyn! I love everything and love the thought and effort that you put into choosing the gifts.

I hope that those of you who participated in the swap were as fortunate as I was and that more of you will choose to participate next year!

Spreading the cheer,


  1. What amazing gifts! That cookbook sounds outstanding! A few years ago, my kids and I tried to learn about a new country every couple weeks, and South Africa is one of the first ones they wanted to learn about. I've been interested in the culture and food ever since. :)

  2. You got some awesome stuff! I have never heard of The Pursuit of Laughter but it definitely sounds right up my alley. I love anything pertaining to the Mitford sisters!

  3. Amanda - Our family isn't very adventurous when it comes to world foods so this is very exciting!

    Lola - I can't wait to finally become acquainted with the Mitfords! Being an anglophile, it's strange that I haven't read anything about them yet.

  4. I am soo glad that you liked your gifts! I thoroughly enjoyed choosing them for you and I hope you have many hours of happy reading these holidays!
    Happy Christmas to you and your family:-)

  5. What a lovely and thoughtful gift! I must try to participate in this next year

  6. Sounds like a really wonderful idea - must look out for this next year.

  7. I read The Christmas Mystery on Christmas eve, and it really is magical. The way to read it is, one chapter every day of the advent calendar. I didn't do that, but I reckon I will on the re-read!