Tag Archives: Alice in Wonderland


A lovely acquaintance, Mollie, made a bookish instagram for her editing called Molliereads (mohrediting.com).  AND it inspired me to make an instagram for bookishness and blogging and happiness and words and connecting.

Find me on Instagram @ bookishcassie

You can view my bookish life as it unfolds and we can share favorite books, book photos, and book comments together in a smaller platform.

See photos like the following:



YES. LET’S DO IT. If we can get a few followers from the blog maybe I’ll do Project 365 the Bookish Edition. That would actually be incredibly fun.  I’d have to read everyday for sure (not that I don’t, you know you have to get your before bed read on).


Feels @ Tumblr

I can’t remember which one, but in one childhood movie, a character used The Bible as a sort of fate guessing game.  Point your finger, open a page and press down hard on the words of your future.  The only way God will tell you if that boy is going to breakup with you on Saturday when he meets Rachel is through random Bible trivia.  I think it was that movie where the girl stuffs her bra with ziplock pudding packs.  It’s the same girl that’s in Hocus Pocus.  Why can I never remember the name.

I’m sorry to say (is this a moment when you use one of those #smh) that I believed this was how God spoke to people back in the day.  Bible scavenger hunts and what not.  Most of my boyfriends either got dumped by Bible dosages, or I decided whether or not to lie to my parents about something minor.  Now obviously, I’m much more grown up and sophisticated (maybe not, #smh), and I have new ways of dealing with stress.  Flipping quarters. No just kidding. I have a book, a book for all things, all times, all feelings.  1000 Feelings For Which There Are No Names is a book from the lovely people at Penguin who send expansive emails with lots of verbiage.  They are book people after all, and they tote a small penguin around with them in their purse so we have to give them a break.

1000 Feelings For Which There Are No Names by Mario Giordana, Illustrated by Ray Fenwick, translated by Isabel Fargo Cole

1000 Feelings For Which There Are No Names is a beautiful book.  French flaps (I learned this word from Audra @ Unabridged Chick), strangely unique illustrations (like looking at a Tumblr typography page), and a translator.  You know it’s going to be interesting when one day you’re able to use that language and the original meant tongue instead of lip and all of a sudden that kiss is much more sloppy than romantic.  A girl can dream.

Not only are the illustrations “ballin'” but the book is so much fun to scavenger hunt.  Having a rough day, close your eyes and crystal ball the hell out of #623. The fear that the medications won’t work.  Or maybe you’re “rough day” amounts to #666. The desperation when everyone tells you you’ve got to “finally let go” — and you can’t.  If you’ve never had a crying fit in your car over #666, then you probably haven’t lived through a teenage girl.  Or finally, for all the colleagues out there with desks to close to sneezing, sputtering, yammering, coughing, talking to loud to their ex-boyfriend, gum chewing, hair curling, professionals out there, this one goes out to you.  #802. The disappointment that other people get by just fine with advice and assistance. OH, YOU DON’T WANT TO TRY MINTS INSTEAD OF GUM, YOU ENDLESS POPPING CACOPHONY.

Anyway, there are unexplainable feelings for every moment of your life in this book, just about.  I’m sure we could come up with a few of our own if we had a book club, and a few restless wives just lying around. (Ba dum cha). Here are a few of my favorites with brief explanations:

  • #390. The envy of other people’s hickeys.

Ray Fenwick Art

Explanation: How much change did you find in that dirty couch when you didn’t know where to put your hands.  I’m looking at you, freshman, front row, hiding that red blotch behind a JROTC uniform.

  • #107. The anxiety that maybe you’re not a real man because you’ve never been to a brothel.

Explanation: Is there where women ladle out soup from large cauldrons wearing nothing but their skivvies.  Let’s stick to that.

  • #100. The felicity of the first touch.

Explanation: I have an American Girl Doll with that name.  She lives in the attic.

  •  #863. The indignation at being called vain.

Explanation: Oh, you mean, those seventeen selfies I just took because I couldn’t get one good one for #selfiesunday.  We see you, instagrammers.

  • #676. The urge to swerve into the guardrail.

Ray Fenwick art

Explanation: Normally this would be called depression, but I have this strange lingering feeling, just a nagging little itch, that everyone has looked at that metal bandaid on the high way and wondered at what speed they could shift it’s surface without killing themselves, sometimes on those rough days (623) how fast you’d have to go to plough through.

  • #485. The happiness of lounging on the sofa together.

Explanation: If by lounging on the sofa you mean in the guest bedroom because my boyfriend is allergic to cats and watching the entire first and second season of American Horror Story in one day so that your eyes are so bloodshot they refuse to close because they have reached that level of openness that now it is about survival.

  • #199. The certain serenity while gazing out a train window.

Alice Feels These Feels @ Disney

This feeling simultaneously makes me feel both alone and together with the entire world.  It might be the way you don’t move for the entire train ride, but stay stock still with your knees together as a school girl, or it might be the blurred grass that the human eye can’t make out by blade or bush, but this feeling is one of my very favorites. I can’t read on a train because I get car sick, my eyes trying to peripheral the view of the window while at the same time scanning the page.  Just not a good thing, so window it is, almost always.  The same thing can be felt in a plane, but that’s more of a “you’re just a speck in the vastness of the universe” than an actual fully together, ripped apart feeling.

  • #18. The dread of ice breaker games.

I think I feared this more than my camp children when we would play these in the large field.  I was a star swimmer in high school and yet the mounting fear was always, will I be picked last?


*With this outpouring of feelings, I have suddenly remembered (by googling pudding packs in bra movie) and the movie that I loved, oh so, is “Now and Then.”

Swoon-Worthy Bookish Valentine Gift Guide


Create your own flame with this Bookish Valentine Gift Guide

The Big-Hearted Book Lover:

Big Hearted Book Lover

Big Hearted Book Lover

For the Coffee Shop Daters:


For the Bright & Bookish:


For the Note Passer:


For the Girl Who Carries Her Weight in Books:


For the Girl With Lists That Have No Titles:


Girls Who Celebrate Caturday with Books:


Bookish on a Budget (Nothing Over $15):


A Little Bit of Bowels, A Little Bit of Bookish.

So, I’m a teacher…and what do I have a lot of right now?  TIME.  I have so much time.  I wouldn’t be complaining about it if I had some expendable money, or I wasn’t surrounded by cornfields on all sides.  These hinder the luxury of time.  Yesterday,  I was in Walmart spending three hours grocery shopping just to eliminate some of that time.  An hour of that was probably pushing the cart and riding it down an empty aisle.  I kind of created a game with myself where I had to beat a certain time before someone turned the corner and walked into the healthy-eating cracker aisle.  No one in my small town is eating healthy crackers, let me tell you.  I also spent a good fifteen minutes talking to one of my students after I hadn’t showered, painted my bathroom (white paint in my hair), no makeup, and definitely nothing better or easier than sweatpants on.  No matter, this is how that conversation went:

My life as a teacher.

My life as a teacher.

“Hey Ms. M.”  | They always come up from behind so I had to turn around and see who was addressing me by my father’s family name.

“Oh Hey, K.  How are you?” | Here’s where he progressed to come around my cart and hold on to the back so there was really no escape.”

“I’m good, what are you doing here?”  This is my favorite teacher question.  Whenever I’m out in town somewhere, usually the grocery store, my students will spot me and either A. ask what I’m doing there or B. smirk around corners and tell me the next day that they saw me out at ______ and I drive a black car, and I rock out to my music.  This time K chose A.  This is my favorite question because the obvious answer is, “well, I have to eat, K, I am a human being,” but my students don’t really like that answer.  In fact, K responded with, “Oh that’s right, I just thought you were a teacher…hey, I might be moving.”  We talked a bit about that and then I moved on to waste more time on July 4th activities like pinterest, the book I can’t seem to finish, and washing my kitchen floor.  (Thanks, Mom).

bluebathroomSince I have all this glorious time, I decided to take on a few projects that I’ve been wanting to accomplish in my 2013 list AND BEYOND.  The first was my glorious evening sky blue bathroom.  Pictured to the right.

I was actually really into this color because I found a cat picture at the flea market, or the thrift store, or some store my mother and I willy-nilly walked into.  My mom’s the queen of “Pull over here! There’s a sign for thrifting!”  There’s something honorable about owning an old object, or an object that already has history embedded into it.  My mom always picks up sweet sewn handkerchiefs, table settings and quilts at the flea market and says “Oh, some grandma made this and now it’s at the flea market.”  I love to make up stories about the objects we meet on the dusty tables.

Portrait of older couple by itinerant photographer Albert Ewing. @ Ohiohistory.wordpress.com

When I was in high school, I liked to buy old photographs and write stories based on the people in them.  I stopped doing this after I found some pictures in an old suitcase of whole families who weren’t smiling.  I’m surprised there was a time in history when people were told not to smile.  Real classy, 1800s.

You thought I was kidding about the Antler Chandelier.

Anyway, it was time for a change and so I looked all over Pinterest for pictures that would inspire some sort of bathroom wonder.  I found all kinds of funky guest bathrooms, some inspired, some splashed color, some were just unique in that I could never recreate an antler chandelier with things I find in the backyard.  I may be a scavenger, but I definitely can’t carve things, shoot things, or skin things.  That’s just not my style.

Being a teacher, I can definitely work with chalkboards though.  Lucky for me, Pinterest had a number of chalkboard inspired bathrooms.  They are so awesome that I’d like to share a few with you.

Pinterest Bathrooms

Pinterest Bathrooms

A | This is just a dabble in chalkboard bathroom etiquette.  If you don’t want to dive right in you can make a DIY chalkboard towel rack.  Directions are @ Makely Home

B | I’m OBSESSED.  However, that’s definitely green chalkboard and it reminds me way too much of the Little House on the Prairie school house.  Plus, am I really going to Secret Garden my bathroom wall?  I don’t have a claw foot tub to make that look extraordinary.

Literary Art @ Obvious State on Etsy

birchGIRL no. 5 @ DanielleDonaldsonart on Etsy

C | This was at Intridecline and while I really loved the idea of it, I wanted to do something like this in my study.  I’m currently in the process of creating a “Feminist Wall.”  It’s going to be a wall of paintings and prints of women doing things that I love.  It’s a little Rosie the Riveter mixed with Virginia Woolf.  I have a hard time defining my womanhood anyway else.  This idea came to me today by the way.  I was just painting my “red study” white (it’s still got one red wall for accent, since that’s cool now-a-days) and it just hit me how many prints of women I have.  If anyone wants to buy me this Virginia Woolf print or this chunk of birch wood painted with redhead, I can promise you endless letter writing.

D | Also no link on the interwebs.  This is a chalkboard door.  I thought this would be really interesting, but then I couldn’t decide if I should chalkboard both sides, or just one.  Then it would only be fun when the door was closed.  I have this wicked old wallpaper in my hallways and I refuse to take it down because it makes me feel like English royalty, but the antique mint and ivory of it doesn’t really go well with black chalk.  They do make any color chalk at Lowes as far as I know.

Creamed Fro

Creamed Fro

None of these were exactly what I wanted so I ventured out to create a mix of pinterest and Cassie.  I wanted a chevron wall, but a wall that was cut in half; half chalkboard, half chevron pattern.  I wanted to be able to write bookish quotes on the top, but still have a fun and flirty pattern on the bottom.  This is a guest bathroom and you must always keep your guests entertained.  I’m sure I read that in a debutante book somewhere.  I must have skipped the chapter on table manners though.  The first step in creating what I wanted was taping off the wall.  I’m not going to write about that because by the end I had paint in my hair, Fromage had tape stuck to her foot and she had already dipped her nose in the white cream.

Kooky Chevron

Kooky Chevron

Really, all you need to know is I can’t measure and I can’t tape the same amount everytime just by looking at it.  Don’t they say that men are much better at spatial reasoning?  This bathroom project proves that.  So, I just did a kooky version of chevron that seemed to fit me better.  It had a little bit of an Alice in Wonderland twist.  Everything mustn’t be straight all the time, must it, it must be turned a bit to the right or made nearly impossible to look at.

After you paint the chalkboard paint, you have to wait THREE DAYS until it dries and you can write on it.  Because I’m impatient and I believe rules are stupid, I went ahead and waited almost two days and then I did the damage.  I have a tendency to go overboard on projects like this one.  I’ll get to that perfect amount of paint, chalk, pen lines, and then I’ll just maul it with other colors and specimen and it’s all downhill from there.  I really had to reign myself in with this one, but here’s what the chalk looked like after I was finished:

DSC_0360 DSC_0355

If you’re wondering, I stole this quote from Her Words Composition Notebooks.  I discovered these little diddys when I was in Australia and they’re currently sitting on my Christmas List for 2013.  They’re by Live Inspired and they have the perfect amount of line space (college ruled) and the lightest dotted lines.  They’re second to my absolute favorite notebook brand, Green Room.  This is a line of notebooks dedicated to women and they have notebooks for every occasion; travel, new opportunities, sea life, etc.  They’re definitely a backpack full of joy.  I was deciding between three or four of their notebook quotes and I thought this one went with the Alice quote, “Why, sometimes I’ve believed as many as six impossible things before breakfast.”  If you’re going to go Alice, go big or go home.

I didn’t stop there though.  I wasn’t done at pure chalkboard.  My classroom needed a few do-dads to make it pop for next school year so I’ve been trying my hand at covering cork boards with fabric.  While that isn’t going too well,  I did have a fabulous idea for a picture clothesline.  Guess where that idea went…guess…guess (I feel like that camel in the Humpday commercial – FAVORITE COMMERCIAL EVER).  It went right into my bathroom.  Thanks to My Favorite Things Blog I was able to print Instagram photos at Walmart.  I printed 6 Instagram photos per page using the 8×10 collage tool.  It’s really awesome, guys, if you have Instagram, you should totally try it.   As the boy says, I don’t have a facebook because I fill that need with Instagram.  He’s probably right, but he most likely won’t read this so I don’t have to worry about him doing a “right” dance.  Also, at Walmart are tiny clothespins.  They’re really adorable and you can get a pack of 20 for under $3.  I then pinned a string up in the corner of my bathroom and used the clothespins to hang the cut-out instagram photos.  Here’s how that turned out:

Instagram Banner

Instagram Banner


That one to the left is when my mom wrote with chalk on my nephew’s easel. She’s cute that way.

This is my first DIY project and definitely my first on this blog (I think…don’t test me).  I’m pretty proud of how it all turned out and here’s one last picture.  Hopefully soon guests will show up for the “ooooh” and “aaahhh” factor.

Final Bathroom Shot

Final Bathroom Shot

Wednesday Newsday, Maybe?

Favorite Tweets:

Book News:

Newsday Tuesday

Favorite Tweets:

Buy Amy’s Poetry Collection. She’s the bomb.

Favorite Search Terms:

  • library bingo: How exactly is this played, and do you win books and bookmarks at the end?  I want to be there.  I hope there are older women with coins and golden tubes of lipstick in their pocketbooks.
  • dreams about bowel movement in public in a chamber pot in a shoe: This was just too much not to share.  What are we “there was an old woman who lived in a shoe?” but yet still lives in a Hunger Games district?
  • cassie lamberta wedding: The weird thing about this search term is I dated a lambert.  This google made me want to sit in a closet and rock back and forth in the fetal position.
  • Just Buffalo Noah Falck: Does this mean one of my favorite poets and one of my favorite cities have joined forces to help people read.  I WILL be exploring this next time I visit family.
  • the main theme in the play “ the best daddy “ by shel silverstein: You’re cheating on your homework, aren’t you?
  • alien ship district: You may be looking for a more science-fiction blog.  However, I have trapped many an alien UFO in my backyard using my spy goggles and pink tool kit.

Book News:

Newsday Tuesday

It’s almost MOVING DAY folks, so bare with me.  We all look a little like this:

My adorable nephew loving the U-Haul in the driveway. It is officially an alien ship.

Favorite Tweets:

Favorite Search Terms:

  • bird model girl: I wish I was a bird model girl.
  • french children’s story cassie and be be: Claire do you know what story this is? I would like a copy!
  • I refuse to sink: It always amazes me what people google.  I feel like I should write, “Call the hotline.”
  • mexican chicken noodle soup: I’m definitely intrigued by this.  Is it like spicy chicken and beans in a noodle soup fashion?
  • lightsaber coloring pages: When you find these, let me know so I can make my nephew into a young padawan. Also, did everyone know that wikipedia has something called “wookiepedia” where I just found out how to properly spell padawan.
  • beauty and the beast library: See Image to Right.

    Marry the Beast, Get the Library.

  • beetlejuice book of the recently deceased: you are my hero.

Books News:

Newsday Tuesday

Favorite Tweets:

Favorite Search Terms:

  • Cassie sparkles Michigan: I’m not sure if you’re trying to find your long lost love via google, or just letting me know that Michigan will crown me and let me wave from a pageant float covered in sparkles and frankincense.  Either way, I’m for this search – I back your stalker ways, and your fourth grade crush on Cassie Sparkle.  I can only imagine what her yearbook picture looks like
  • toddler lawn furniture: This gives me THE BEST mental image, but what am I…Target?
  • free southern belle coloring pages: Ya’ll, send those right over, please and thank you.  (This is me curtsying.  I also own a bonnet).
  • Grammar humor: what is my mind doing today.  All of a sudden two men with pocket watches in the slit of their vests, with spectacles resting at the hook of their nose are drinking tea and har-har-ing. (Har-har, dear, har-har: when used in a sentence).

Book News:

Questions of Book Lust

Sophie from Her library adventures adapted these for a recent blog post of hers- these questions are the original questions for a bookworm.  And then after, it was stolen by bookgrrl, and I borrowed it from her.  It’s traveled a long way, my friends, feel free to spread it over the book nation.  It’s bloggers uniting, just imagine that picture of all the stick people holding hands around the world and let your heart “jump, jump, jump around.” (Yes, old school rap, and MC Hammer pants definitely go with book blogging, just in case you were wondering.  Also, those glasses that look like window shutters that Kanye wears – book blogging essential).  Lastly, random note, I just tried to spell “shutters” like “udders.”

Marco Polo - Favorite Tea. I don't quite look as shadowy as her though when I drink it.

Imagine you sit in front of a fireplace. You read and beside you there is a cup with something hot in it. What would that be in your case: tea, coffee or hot chocolate?

Well given that I waitressed at a tea shop in Australia (with Alice in Wonderland high tea’s, big bonnet hats and old women with lots of enourmous jewels on their hands) I want to go with tea.  Specifically: Orange Spice Tea in America, or Marco Polo in Australia.  However, I’m thinking this is in the evening and I have boyfriend sweat pants on (meaning they’re 9 sizes too big and I can fit all the cheese I want in them) and fuzzy socks adore my feet, so tea would be better than keeping myself up all night with coffee.  Then again, if this is the morning, and I have just finished the newspaper that I don’t really read – just scan, and there are sunny-side-up eggs on the side with an everything bagel, lightly buttered (I’m such a princess), then I would choose coffee.  I also choose coffee at the RR, when I’m sitting in an over-large chair (preferably leather), while I’m driving (because the chance of spilling is 1 in 1) and when I go to IHOP.  I do not like to drink hot things when I’m eating hot food though, and I much prefer to eat honey nut cheerios while I read, out of habit and dedication to the honey bee.

If an author gave you the chance to rewrite or to change the fate of a book character, who would you chose?

SPOILER: EASY.  Emma in One Day by David Nicholls.  (Well…maybe not easy because Bovary needs a few tweaks in Madame Bovary).  But, seriously…you’re going to write a book where the main female character waits twenty years for the main male character to get his shit together (aka dump the frigid blonde, take care of his kid, quit his rock star ways and sweaty drinking) and then you kill her at the end.  What kind of anti-feminist lesson are you trying to pull here, David?  I LOATHE this book…I would make it eat worms if I could.   So frustrated.  I haven’t even seen the movie because I refuse to give any more money than my seven dollars (for the book) to David Nicholls or anyone on his team of readers and editors.

Did your parents read stories to you when you were little? if yes are there any special ones you remember the most?

Little Golden Book: Dumbo Edition

My mom always tells this story of me when I was still crawling.  It seems I had a book shelf and while my parents watched television on the couch I would crawl back and forth from bookshelf to parent feet and pile up my books.  When I was finally ready and the pile was about my height, I would climb up on the cushion, sit patiently and point at the books expecting either parent to read every single one.  Some of the favorites were: The Giving Tree, Goodnight Moon, Love you Forever, and the Little Golden Books (example to your left).

What do you like more the smell of old antiquarian books or the smell of new fresh ones you just bought?

Oh my, nom-nom-nom, old books.  I could literally smell page one, turn the page, smell page two, turn the page, smell the spinal crack, turn the page, smell the left corner, turn the page…all the way through an antiquarian book.  It’s the dust, or the molding of the old wooden shelves, or the finger smears of everyone before me that makes it worth it.  It’s the book flower, the anti-daisy smell.  It’s more nursing home, than fresh baby.  More grandpa’s elbow-patched jacket than a thirteen year old’s Victoria Secret perfume.  An antique book is its very own smell…like the back of a Victorian closet, or a crawl space below Hemingway’s house.  If it’s not browned at the edges, it ain’t for me.  I would literally, if I could, smell like an old librarian.  Speaking of, if anyone is selling old librarian cardigans – send them to this girl.

Holden, swoon.

You get the opportunity to chose between two secret talents: either to be able to make things come to life through reading them or the gift to read yourself into a book. Which one would you like to have?

….Are you joking.  I would be on my way to the catipillar, or the walrus, or the tea ceremony….I would educate myself on croquet if I could read myself into Alice.  I would wear petticoats ALL DAY LONG.  You have no idea how many goosebumps, and how cold my fingers got when I read this question.   I would also be dating, saving, fixing, Holden Caulfield because I like my men baggy, and used…clearly.

Do you have a favorite children’s book or a favorite fairy tale?

Children’s book(s) would be Sweet Valley High books (which Diablo Cody is writing into a movie – YES YES YES YES).  But, fairy tale, I’m not so sure.  I have an attachment to Blue Beard, Hansel and Gretel, and then Red Riding Hood (mostly because I want to own a pine-smelling red cloak.  But, I would want to be The Little Mermaid...because she’s a redhead and a breathes in the sea.  I would also like to be Jessica Rabbit, but she’s not really a fairy tale character.  Give me a Grimm, and I’m a happy girl.

Someone would talk to your friends and ask them to compare you to a book character. With whom do you think would they compare you?

Alice, times one million.  But if I can’t be Alice….(am I pushing my opinions too much here?)…I would have to be…wow, I have no idea. Friends, I need your help.  (Make her witty, or else).  Miss Havisham maybe, if she would have had oodles of cats and sat on her porch more.  I could see where my husband would die and I would wear the same dress caked with dirt for years and years.

Anne Sexton

Tell me the name of a writer whom you would like to have as a friend.

There’s way too many choices.  I think Edgar Allen Poe would drive me insane, and Dickens would be so damn depressing and Dr. Suess would always be rhyming, so really…a woman.  My head keeps flashing, “Anne Enright” because she’s Irish, and I’m in love with the majority of her books, but I feel like I’m missing someone.  Oh, duh, Anne Sexton.  Rather than Sylvia, I’d love to be the lady on the other line of her twisted, corking phone cord.  I’d like to talk in metaphors over dinner, and paint our nails dark colors on the floor of a tiled kitchen.

You can hide in a written down world for only one night into which world do you escape?

Man, oh man….Odysseus’ castle when he returns from his journey and finds all of the suitors and the ladies-in-waiting and kills each one except Penelope (his wife).  What a scene, it’s like Hamlet on steroids with less sex-gone-wrong.

Arthur Rackham Grimm's Illustration

Something terrible happens: you have to flee to an unknown place and all you can take with you are three books of all the ones you own. Which three ones do you put into your bag?


1. Grimms’ Fairy Tales because I’m sure I could always discover something new, and when they got old I could tell myself my own tales, curling up into the sand and palm leaves in which I lay.

2. Norton Anthology of Contemporary Short Fiction (same mindset as Grimm).  There are a lot to read and they can be read repeatedly with still fresh encounters.  I mean, just think about how many ways you can unwrap The Yellow Wallpaper.  Is she losing her damn mind?

3. Sylvia Plath’s Diaries.  I have been unable to complete them for some time now, although I’ve read most and she was a *ucking genius (pardon my french).  Plus, although I’m angry with Ted Hughes for publishing them without her knowledge especially due to the fact that they are deeply personal, I’m in total gratitude to him for letting us into a glimpse of her perfect diary.  I started to read this book and asked myself – why does anyone else write when this has already been brought into the world?  It’s like a creative writer’s bible.

In closing, I’d like to share this Conversation with B.H. Fairchild about poetry.

And also, the original writing and drawings of Lewis Carroll Alice’s Adventures Under Ground online.  Thanks to Beauty and Dreams I found this.


Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 1,079 other followers

%d bloggers like this: