That Comforting Feeling

In the small Connecticut town where my family spends part of the summer, there is an amazing used bookstore.  It has a dog named Sailor, and a comfy rocking chair, and you can buy a whole bag of gently loved children’s books for the cost of a movie and popcorn — perfect for a damp beach house.  The last time we were visiting, my daughter picked out several hardcovers, and had the bag dangling from her wrist.  My husband noticed and offered to carry it for her.  She refused, whispering to me, “It’s a comforting feeling.”

It made me laugh, because it’s exactly what I say when my husband ‘offers’ to clear the bed of the three or four books that strewn on his side.  There’s just something comforting about having a book, or four, nearby, in case the first one turns out to be not what you were expecting.

Driving home from ballet class in the dark the other night, I realized that fall was here to stay.  No more long, lazy summer afternoons. No more beach days. No more shorts and flip-flops.  I’m desperately in need of some comforting, and so I’m blatantly stealing an idea from Katherine Center (check out her books, if you haven’t already, particularly Everyone is Beautiful) and creating a Comfort List.  Here goes:

My Comfort List for November

Clean, warm sheets, fresh from the dryer

My bedside table

A stack of books on the bedside table that I can’t wait to read

A hot pot of tea on a Sunday morning when it’s raining

Coming in from the cold to smell potatoes roasting with olive oil and rosemary

A large brown dog asleep at my feet
Snuggling in bed with the family on Saturday morning
Learning that  my favorite authors have new books coming out soon (looking forward to Bartimaeus  and The Ring of Solomon by Jonathan Stroud and The Other Life by Ellen Meister, one of the nicest authors I know)
Hearing the next chapter of my book in my head and knowing it will be there for me when I have time to write it
Home-made chocolate pudding
The weight of my five-year-old in my arms

Watching ‘Winnie the Pooh and the Blustery Day’ with my daughter, eating hot buttered popcorn and snuggling under the blankets.

What’s on your list?

Liz Michalski


  1. Coffee and a Book Chick on November 4, 2010 at 12:13 pm

    I really enjoyed The Thirteenth Tale — very Gothic and haunting, and a lot of wonderful literary references throughout that have pushed my To Be Read list to quite a groaning point! I hope you enjoy!

  2. amanda on November 5, 2010 at 11:26 am

    Hello! Found you over at Writer Unboxed.

    This is a lovely comfort list. Books are at the top of mine, as well. Also, on the list are my favorite thick red socks, and the entire family (6 of us) quietly sitting in one room, reading. Aaaahh….

    • liz on November 5, 2010 at 4:40 pm

      Thanks for following me home! Toasty socks are definitely going on my next list — and it must be lovely to have your whole family reading together! (We are not quite at that stage yet, but soon!)

  3. Christine on November 8, 2010 at 4:23 pm

    Nice thread!
    Of course books are on the top of my list too! Love reading in bed on a stormy day listening to the rain pound on the skylights. Add to that my little book buddy with the purring kitty stretched across both our laps– perfect. We usually brew some green or red tea with honey. Sometimes we talk about what each of us are reading, but most of the time we just enjoy the stillness of reading. It is one of the things I look forward to in winter, since during warm months we are out and about rather than reading.

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