Wednesday 1 May 2024

Gladys Taber and Bonne Maman


"May in New England is the poetry of the seasons. After the bitter winter, roaring March, tentative April, May brings a time of blooming. Tender green leaves unfold. They look polished. As they thicken, the hills and valleys are bathed in a delicate green light. On the slope above the pond at Stillmeadow, the daffodils and narcissi Jill planted long ago star the grasses with gold and white. The wild violets make walking difficult. Who can bear to crush them?

  Then there are the lilacs, amethyst and ivory clusters of blossoms which fill the air with sweetness. This is  lilac countryside and  they still grow and bloom around the foundations of long-gone houses and along ancient stone walls."       Gladys Taber

I just finished rereading Country Chronicle probably for the last time.  When I dip into her books I feel like I'm visiting an old friend, and I suppose she does qualify as just that. Now that I'm slowly deciding what to do with my old and oft reread books I find I would prefer to find good homes for them instead of  donating them to the thrift store. I dropped by the local used book store this morning but they seemed reluctant to buy them. Apparently there's little demand. 

The used bookstore is next door to a lovely Deli where I found these cute little jars of Bonne Maman spreads ( they call them that. I call them jams).  There are even a few varieties I don't think I've seen in the 250ml size, such as Red Currant-Raspberry. Yum.

The sun is shining and I must go out and see if my Lily of the Valley's tiny buds have opened. I noticed yesterday that they were looking promising.  Happy new month of May.

Thanks for visiting


  1. Bonne maman is a great favourite here! I read Gladys many years ago and I'd forgotten how lovely her writing is.

  2. I do have that book of Glady Tabor's I have a couple of her other ones I need to dig them out again .
    I have never seen those small jams before either.

  3. I buy only the Bonne Maman jams, my favorite is their marmalade. It is hard to declutter books, I am doing that too. First choice I ask friends if they would like a book, usually I give the books to a Little Free Library in my neighborhood.

  4. I am loving May already:) Those jams are so good 👍

  5. I truly enjoyed my first day of May, too.
    It was such a warm and lovely day and a great time to be outside. I'm not familiar with that brand of jam but those little jars are adorable. I'm sure you'll find uses for them when they're empty.

  6. With a book containing such beautiful words, I don't think I could bear to part with it. Some treasures are meant to be held on to, so don't be too hasty with what you throw away :) xx

  7. What a well written text Marigot!
    Yes books, I'm going to do a clean out of my library and go back to some favorites!
    I'm missing some that I've given away but I know they're in good hands and I'm glad!
    Bon Mama jams are great, I've had them for years.
    Have a wonderful May.

  8. I use to take books into our used bookstore...they take them and I "buy" other books with my credits. Haven't been there in ages!
    I love the apricot and cherry jams.

  9. I had to donate a lot if my books..they were things no one reads any more. But books are like old friends. I have a book, about quilters in Tennesse, andvif insist down with it, it is like sitting down with my mom and her best friend.

  10. Lots of rain and street flooding here. Hope you find someone who will appreciate your books, I think they would be a treasure to have.

  11. Prior to two major cross-country moves [there were lesser moves!] I culled books, donating some to a used book store. I've kept many long time favorites, and have sometimes replaced a badly worn copy with one sourced through alibris. Inevitably, after a few years I've wished a certain title was still on my shelves.
    I first encountered Gladys Tabor in her 'Butternut Wisdom' page which was featured in a magazine my mother purchased each month. I have several of her books which I sometimes revisit. I've found that to read through a whole book at once I become a bit put off by what seems to be a self-deprecating tone. Her descriptions of New England seasons never fail to please.

  12. I wish you a happy May! I can understand, that you feel special books like friends. I also have some of them and iIcan read them often and slowly like visiting them for a wile.

  13. Country Chronicle (bbok?). Never heard about it. Now I have to google... you make me so curious. I recently put a box of old novels on the Dutch marketplace and sold them for a small price, two euros per book. Then, almost a war broke out between two people claiming they were the last before the bidding time limit. I had set a limit. That wasn't funny. Now I'm distributing my books to mini libraries in the neighborhood.

    Warm regards from me, from the Netherlands. Where it's raining very hard, and very cold. Perfect reading weather. 📚🌧️❄️

  14. I've always called them jams too. I have a stack of books to read. I think I need to stop knitting and crocheting for awhile and read to catch up.

  15. 'May ... is the poetry of the seasons'. What a nice way to put it.

  16. After reading your various posts over the years mentioning Gladys Taber, I have kept an eye open for her books but so far, no luck. Too bad I don't live closer, I would love to buy one of her books from you. Yes, the Bonne Maman jams are so delicious though the Marmalade one is my least favorite. And the jars are so lovely to re-use! Everything looks more tasty in a pretty jar and our middle daughter uses the tiny little "sample" jars of her jam for her crafts. I hope the lily-of-the-valley was in bloom for you! Do you have difficulty containing it (to keep it from encroaching on your other plants?

  17. Bonne Maman are popular jams.

    All the best Jan