January Favourites

Clearly this post is late, but the end of January got a bit full of Kaiser excitement and it would have seemed really incongruous to post it!

I always love reading people’s recommendations on things they’ve enjoyed lately so I’m going to try and contribute every month. I am not sure I will read, watch or cook anything for the next few months but maybe this might focus my mind a little 🙂

So, last month, this was what I enjoyed.


This has been a big month for reading because my course started at the end of the month and I crammed as many books in as possible beforehand. I may not read many more novels for a few months, it’ll be all text books.  I ended up reading 3 books and they were all good.

My Name is Asher Lev (Chaim Potok) was wonderful. Such fabulous writing, such an insight into the world of observant jews. I found myself actually dreading reading the final scene as I guessed how it would go down. Brilliant stuff.

The Greenhouse (Audur Ava Olafsdottir) was a great easy read (or listen, I had it as an audiobook). The tale of a young Icelandic man coping with the loss of his mother and learning to be a father was really sweet.

Kafka on the Shore (Haruki Murakami) was LONG. This was also an audiobook and it was about 16 hours of listening. I LOVED the first half, was totally gripped. But I found myself fading a little by the second half. Murakami does need a good editor, I feel. The highlight was the wonderful old gentleman who can talk to cats.


My trip to the UK gave me the opportunity to watch the kind of films I like to watch if my boys aren’t around, so this month’s selection are slightly more cultured than usual. All these recommendations are French but don’t let that put you off.

Mood Indigo is a lovely film based on a novel by Boris Vian. The novel is better, in fact, and well worth reading, but it was very sweet, very sad and Audrey Tautou is so gorgeous.

Persepolis is quite old (2007) and I should have watched it years ago. It’s the animated tale of a young girl living through the Iranian Revolution in the 70s and the change in her life. It was really thought provoking.

Quite weirdly, United Airlines had De Toutes Nos Forces on their in-flight entertainment. If you watch ONE of this  month’s films, make it this one. The story of a disabled son and his grumpy father who take on Ironman Nice had me literally sobbing in my plane seat. Based on Team Hoyt, it is fab. Bring tissues. Lots of tissues.


This was the month of Jamie Oliver’s Parsnip Soup which is just delicious. My boys request it regularly now and the Dude licks the plate. Super-easy.


I won’t have much time for blog reading  in the next few months  (especially new ones) but I’ve added Challenge Sophie to my reading list. She’s a British girl living in Chamonix and she’s all about mountain living, cycling, Ironmaning and other athletic challenges. I really like her blog.


My Early Childhood Education classes started last week. I am really loving being a student again – the new stationery, the lecture-theatres, being TAUGHT and STUDYING again. One of my classes opened with this wonderful Ted talk called ‘Every kid needs a champion’. It kind of moved me to (well hidden) tears and got me incredibly fired up for my new career. I appreciate that not everyone is into kids or teaching but there’s something very inspiring about this lady (total girl crush) and I found myself longing to make a difference in the lives of children. Watch it here. 

Happy February, everyone.

8 Comments Add yours

  1. Angela says:

    For some reason at first I read Jaime Oliver as John Oliver & I was like, “He has a food blog??? WOW!” Looks super delicious & like something I should try very soon. Good luck with your new classes!

    1. Cathryn says:

      Try the soup, it’s so good!!

  2. Nicola Johnson says:

    Glad to read that the French language skills are still there – how’s your Italian?!
    I’m not sure my Janhas been quite so cultural but it has involved increased amounts of running mileage, finishing off the Christmas cake (phew for the running!), getting a new job and resigning from my old one (kind of forgot this til I started typing!), some holiday planning (Vegas!) and an overnight stay and some walking in the New Forest. I aldo read The Mouseproof Kitchen for book club (ok, but think it will be going to the jumble sale) and made a gpod start into Feb’s book The Mill On The Floss.

    1. Cathryn says:

      My Italian is so dodgy now 🙂 So excited about your new job but more excited about seeing you in Vegas.

  3. Oh, I like that kind of posts! That’s a great idea.
    I don’t know the movie “De toutes nos forces”. How is it possible??? I HAVE to watch it. Also, now, I’ll have another food blog to obsess about… 😉 AND I’ll have to check the blog you mentioned. I may like this girl… 😉

    Happy birthday pretty lady!!!

    1. Cathryn says:

      I don’t think De Toutes Nos Forces was a ‘BIG’ film but it’s gorgeous, you have to see it.

  4. Laurel Cress says:

    Thanks for the recipe! I’m going to try the soup. And where do you get your audio books? I love audio books.

    1. Cathryn says:

      You’ll love the soup, it’s so good.

      For audiobooks, download the San Mateo County Library app and the Overdrive app. Then you can rent audiobooks from the library (on Overdrive). They get sent to your phone and then they take them back magically at the end of the rental period. It’s seriously incredible actually. Free audiobooks!!

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