Thursday, March 29, 2012

An eye on Oxford...

I took the kids to Oxford on Sunday, to poke around the University of Oxford and surroundings. 
It was one of those last minute, spontaneous affairs.
I had been before, in 1982 and am happy to report, it is still as magical as I remembered.
One thing I did learn on this trip, you can not 'do' Oxford in an afternoon, at least by my calculations. 
Oxford is like a good book, the kind of book you look forward to at the end of the day. 
You need to slowly turn the pages, reflecting on what you just read. It is the anticipation of what is to come that is the most rewarding. Losing yourself in the story is essential. 

At this point, my kids would be rolling their eyes. 
We had a difference of opinion in what we wanted to do which quickly made me realise, 
I need to go back on my own.

The kids wanted to steer clear of museums, cathedrals and historic buildings...
anything that would end up with mother needing to be dragged along. 
It was a beautiful day, so we all agreed to appreciate the view from the street.

I am showing my favourite photos, they are not so much 'scenes of Oxford' but personal vignettes.
My eye on Oxford so to speak.
I will start and end with my favourite photos, they remind me of a book I cherish, 'A Tree Grows in Brooklyn'. The tree of heaven...

The 'scenes of Oxford' are still to come.
I will save that for another day, on my travel blog, Finding My England.
If you would like to explore Oxford and Oxfordshire yourself one day, you can research it here.


Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Déjà vu in Surrey

Do you ever feel like your life is a series of reruns. Something happens and you know you have been there before....again and again. Well, here I sit...procrastinating from the inevitable as I start to sort through our belongings for our move in a few months time. The 'moving man' is coming in three weeks to have 'a look' at our belongings. I cringe as I type this because I really meant to get rid of all the 'stuff' that has been sitting in our garage these past two years, I really did...but...but....I was busy. :)

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

A Novel Bookstore, Diane Keaton and a Giveaway

You may wonder why I am showing a photograph of my bike with a book bag hanging off it. Well...I was riding into town yesterday and grabbed a book bag I had bought at Daunt Books in London the day before. As I rode off, merrily down the lane, I thought of blogging friends who would appreciate this bag as much as I do. Wishing I could just place a bulk order, all the while knowing that Mr. H would think I had completely lost my senses, I decided that two would do...for a giveaway. Yes,  I just finished one giveaway last week but I am impulsive and I always say, when the spirit moves just have to run with it.

Friday, March 23, 2012

Fictional Pie, 21 Book Challenge and 2 Winners

This is so exciting! 
My daughter, Miss Christine,
 suggested "we cut ourselves a slice of fictional pie
and indulge in the written word".
She came up with a fun idea, 
a mother and daughter book challenge. 
A 21 Book Challenge to be exact.
That is we have to read 21 books within the next year.
Being the Virgo that I am, I am thinking within six months.
She is in the process of organising a home for this idea on her blog.
Daughter plans to take each category as it comes,
mother needs a pre-determined list. :)

Maybe you can help me.
Better yet, maybe you would like to do this as well.
My daughter is going to organise a book club around 
this event on her blog. I will keep you posted.

In the meantime, here is the list she handed over to me,
I must read....

Historical Novel (Fiction/Non-Fiction)
Book to Movie
 Own Choice
New York Top 10 Best-Seller
Childhood Favourite
Staff Recommendation (Library/Bookshop)
Murder Mystery
 'Meaning to Read'
 One which claims to 'Change Your Life'
 Guilt-induced Read 
 Short Story
Travel Writing
Own Choice
 Mother/Daughter Recommendation
(we have to read what we recommend to each other)

I have a few ideas and would welcome more.
Any suggestions for the categories above?

Books for Cooks
I am delighted to announce two winners of my 
Books for Cooks Cookbook Giveaway.
There must be something in the number two as 
coincidentally, the winners selected by random generator
have the 'two' in their titles.


Ladies, I will be in touch shortly.
In the meantime, if you missed out, do not despair.
I have a growing stack of more books like this on my desk.
I will be back with more....once I figure out my 21 book challenge list!

If you have any suggestions, I am keen to read them!

As always, my very best wishes!!


Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Being Yourself

Katharine Hepburn, just being herself, here.

I am saying farewell to CJ Style Notes...
once upon a time called, cashmerejeans.

Many have suggested it would be easier for them 
and me to put it all in one place.  I have to agree.

I think the photograph above says it best.
In the end, about just being yourself.
I have a feeling Katharine would have agreed. :)

If you followed me over at CJ Sytle Notes.. I thank you sincerely.
I am still happily pinning over at Pinterest,
on style that suits women of my age,
the very best kind of age... CJ Travel and Style Notes.

As always, I thank you from the bottom of my heart 
for reading along. 

Jeanne xx


I started this blog as a test. I was working on a presentation 
to show a group of women how to start a blog. 
I called it the first thing that came into my head. 
I was looking at the photo above and thought..perfect..
..everything I love... cashmere and jeans. 
Once the presentation was over, I thought on it and decided to add a few 
more things and before I knew it I was compiling another blog. 
Over time, Cashmerejeans became CJ Style Notes and
16 months later, here I am. 

On that note, I have decided to consolidate. I am in downsizing mode. 
 I will continue to write over at Collage of Life, my HQ so to speak.
Style will always be on my mind...the kind that suits women of my age, 
the very best kind of age. :)

I want to thank each and every one of you who followed this blog.

If you enjoy the same sort of style, you can still find me 
pinning away on CJ Travel and Style Notes @ Pinterest.

I will also write about my kind of style @ Collage of Life.

Before I go, I will end with the most popular posts
during the past 16 months. Is there any better way
to end than with women of enduring style and elegance?

Vanessa Redgrave here
Candice Bergen, here

Lauren Bacall, here

Diane Keaton, here
Meryl Streep and others in Praise of Older Women, here.
Jackie Kennedy Onassis, here.
Grace Kelly, here.

Katharine Hepburn, here

In the end, it really is about just being yourself.
Don't you think?

Jeanne xx

The End.

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Postcards and a Walk in Paris

I had the best kind of Mother's Day yesterday. 
My kids earned five gold stars for their efforts!

They gave me time to sort out a project that has been on my mind.
I have offered many a postcard to readers recently and have fallen a bit behind. 
If you are still waiting... it is still coming, 
as I now have perfect order in my postcard world.

Best of all, I discovered these wonderful postcards from Penguin.
I bought the 100 postcard collection a few weeks ago 
and had forgotten all about them. Seek and you shall find. :)

If you love books, as I do...
these postcards will be hard to resist.

I love them so much that I bought two boxes, 
one for you and one for me. :)
Life could not get any easier.

I have sorted and cleared and now my postcard world is complete.
The sun is shining, the cards are by my side and pen is at the ready.

Before I go... 
I would love to send you over to the wonderful Vicki @ French Essence.
We met for lunch last week in London and I passed on a book that
I thought she and I would both enjoy. 
My one for me and one for you philosphy at work again. :)
We both started reading it over the weekend and we both adore it.

Have you read?

I popped it into My Shop Around The Corner here..
better yet, you can read what Vicki has to say here

and...if you would like to join in the Giveaway draw for 
this special cookbook from 'Books for Cooks' in Notting Hill'
visit here.

Best wishes for a lovely week!

Jeanne xx

Monday, March 19, 2012

Homemade Love

 It's Mother's Day in England.
It's been homemade love
all day long... the very best kind of love.

Breakfast in bed....

 Coffee with my new book...
by John Baxter

And a soon to be surprise creation from my 12 year old son.
My guess is Carrot Cake...but I'm just guessing. :)

Is there anything better than homemade love?

Happy Mother's Day to all who are celebrating
and to all women around the world... today I am
sending you best wishes for a whole lot of homemade love!

Jeanne xx

Sunday, March 18, 2012

A world-besotted traveller in Dublin

When we moved to England, I declared one thing to Mr. H.
I wasn't leaving until I travelled to Ireland.
It has been a life long dream.
It must be the Irish in me.

My only regret, is that I have not seen more.
With a few busy months before our departure to Vietnam,
I must save it for another day.

We managed a break to Dublin 
for a few cold wintry days in December 2010. 

I wrote that I went to Dublin and discovered Boston.
I wrote about it here:

I dream of travelling the Irish countryside.
My journey is not over. One day, I will get there.
For now, I have these beautiful memories of Dublin.

In the spirit of St. Patrick's Day and a world-besotted traveller..
Irish writer, Jonathan Swift. :)

Happy St. Patrick's Day!
with views on Dublin...

Sir Benjamin Lee Guinness, 1st Baronet
 (1798-1868) St. Patrick's Cathedral, Dublin
Jonathan Swift (1713-1745)
St. Patrick's Cathedral

Epitaph written by Jonathan Swift 
and loosely translated from the Latin by Irish author William Butler Yeats

Swift has sailed into his rest.
Savage indignation there cannot lacerate his breast.
Imitate him if you dare, world-besotted traveller.
He served human liberty.

Happy St. Patrick's Day from
Jeanne and her travelling Irish hat.

My love for all things Irish has no end...

taken on travels thru Dublin in December 2010
Reference to Jonathan Swift here 

Friday, March 16, 2012

Notting Hill, Cookbooks and a Giveaway

Original painting by Selina Snow, Books for Cooks

Last week, I met up with three lovely ladies for lunch
at Books for Cooks, a wonderful little bookshop tucked away in Notting Hill. 

I admit I was a tad late, and perhaps it was not wise to stop and take
photos along the way, but you know what it is like... 
it was raining and well...London in the rain... how could I not?

  Distractions aside, I turned my attention to the bookshop.

 They say it is 'crammed with thousands of tasty titles and equipped with a squashy sofa for cookbook junkies in need of a long read'.  It certainly is! If you love cookbooks, this is the place for you.

We were some of the lucky few who managed to grab a table for lunch. The tables are squeezed into the shop during lunch and in my mind this is the best way to take it all in. I admit it is a bit distracting, as we could not take our eyes off all the bookshelves...filled with every cookbook imaginable. Recipes are tested and served from the cookbooks on the shelves. The goal is to serve all the food until it runs out and it does. Nestled into our corner on this rainy afternoon, we were quickly served deliciously hot bowls of soup. I wish I could tell you what we had but the distraction of all those cookbooks overwhelmed me. Soup was followed by a Beef and Guinness Pie and a heavenly Flourless Chocolate Cake topped off with a cafe latte on the side. Bliss.

Books for Cooks sells a series of cookbooks filled with their tried and true recipes. They feature the best-tasting dishes from the cookbooks tested throughout the year. There are nine cookbooks in total.

Front and back covers

I grabbed a few for me and a few for you.
I am happy to offer you Books 1, 2, and 3 (above) in the form of a Giveaway. 
I have two to Giveaway and plan to carry on with more at a later date. 
The cookbook offers recipes for soups, main courses, salads & sides, cakes & tarts,
pavlovas & meringues, basics, menus, food in season, food finds in Notting Hill and a recipe list.
I have cooked three meals in the last two days and they have all been delicious.

Spicy Beef Salad, 
Roast Tomato Bruschetta with Red Onion & Basil Vinaigrette
Moroccan Chicken with Lemon and Green Olives.

All you have to do is leave a comment. 

I will select two winners 
on Wednesday, March 21 at 6:00pm (UK time).

In the meantime, I picked up a dozen postcards of the image at the top of this post. :)
I am a bit behind on my postcard writing...and hope to get caught up this week.
If you would like one, you can write to me

I promise, it will get to you one day! :)

 Images around Notting Hill~me
all other images via Books for Cooks


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