Happy New Year!

As always, my wish for you is that your gauges be spot on.

happy new year!

and announcing the answers to the quiz…
1) Cosette has been paid to have her art work appear where c) on a credit card website
2) Cosette’s first real adult sweater was knit for b) viggo mortensen
3) How did Cosette’s book deal go down? c) over flickr
4) How long has Cosette been knitting? e) 6.5 years
and then this happened and life has never been the same.
5) Cosette prefers to knit with a) wool – witness this rant about shetland.
6) How fast does Cosette knit? c) this is a ridiculous question – and obviously written for non-knitters!
7) How much yarn does Cosette have? e) a room full
8) How many spinning apperati (wheels and spindles) does Cosette own? b) 9
here, here, here, here, and here.
9) Which of the following did Cosette’s masters thesis NOT include b) live sheep
a) crocheted hors d’oeurves and here.
c) recycled sweater wool in both forms
d) a spinning wheel bought at a thrift store (see pictures of the opening towards the bottom)
e) the theology of genesis
10) Which of the following has Cosette made? a) the same hat 6 times

and the people with the most correct answers are people who really know me :) honestly, top 5, 4/5 people know me in real life.  so here’s the prize breakdown:
3 patterns each go to lynne and cheryl who only missed 2 each
2 patterns each go to jamie, mick, and meghan for missing only 3
and the rest of you get one pattern each just for playing :)

thanks to all who played.  you, my reader and responders, make blogging another year worthwhile and you never fail to make me smile.

old feminists, rock stars, and those swayed by the cute and fuzzy

stole this meme from shannon!

1. First thing you wash in the shower? my hair.  the shampoo has to sit on my head for a while, so i do other things while that’s sitting.

2. What color is your favorite hoodie? grass green.  it’s a vintage NOW sweatshirt passed on to me by an old feminist.

3. Would you kiss the last person you kissed again? yes please.

4. Do you plan outfits? not so much.

5. How are you feeling RIGHT now? like my sinuses hate me.

6. What’s the closest thing to you that’s red? the mary jane keens that are on my feet.

7. Tell me about the last dream you remember having? nada.

8. Did you meet anybody new today? yes.  a crazy organist composer who has insane hair and wears suits all the time.

9. What are you craving right now? dairy.  cheese or yogurt would be nice.

10. Do you floss? uh huh and  i would have flossed a lot more when i was young if someone had told me the food in between my teeth was rotting in my mouth while i slept.  ew.

11. What comes to mind when I say cabbage? colcannon.

12. Are you emotional? not particularly.

13. Have you ever counted to 1,000? dunno.

14. Do you bite into your ice cream or just lick it? no biting, just licking.

15. Do you like your hair? it’s at awkward length.  almost time to shave off the back again.

16. Do you like yourself? uh huh.

17. Would you go out to eat with George W. Bush? in a group.  just me and him?  no.  but especially if my southern gentleman friend ross could be there.

18. What are you listening to right now? electronics.

19. Are your parents strict? sometimes.  mostly i’d say they just had high expectations.

20. Would you go sky diving? not a chance.

21. Do you like cottage cheese? yes!  but especially mixed with raspberry or blackberry yogurt.

22. Have you ever met a celebrity? only knitting rock stars :D

23. Do you rent movies often? nope.  i watch a lot of them though.

24. Is there anything sparkly in the room you’re in? the raised letters on a thank you card and my rings would be it.

25. How many countries have you visited? 3, including the US… and those other two only since i was 21.

26. Have you made a prank phone call? only in the context of the ‘girl talk’ board game :) when i was way too old to be playing it, like in high school!

27. Ever been on a train? yup.  i moved from vancouver bc to pittsburgh pa via train.

28. Brown or white eggs? either.  local.  grass fed.  free range.  in other words, any color as long as they’re happy eggs.  that said, my last batch of eggs from the co-op had blue, brown, tan, and white eggs.

29. Do you have a cell phone? unfortunately.  but we share one which confuses every person who calls it.

30. Do you use chap stick? burts bees classic minty stuff.

31. Do you own a gun? no.  but i’m sure i’ll inherit one or two.

32. Can you use chopsticks? good enough.

33. Who are you going to be with tonight? the choir of st paul of the cross monastery.  probably some spouses and priests too.

34. Are you too forgiving? define ‘too.’  probably not.

35. Ever been in love? once.

36. What is your best friend(s) doing tomorrow? playing mass and video games.  not at the same time.

37. Ever have cream puffs? YUM!

38. Last time you cried? 2 weeks ago.  4 am.

39. What was the last question you asked? i asked for food.

40. Favorite time of the year? any time as long as i’m in montana.

41. Do you have any tattoos? nope.

42. Are you sarcastic? once in a while.

43. Have you ever seen The Butterfly Effect? no.

44. Ever walked into a wall? yep.

45. Favorite color? green.  red…

46. Have you ever slapped someone? No.

47. Is your hair curly? nope.  straight as a board.

48. What was the last CD you bought? Over the Rhine or Patti Griffin.  it’s been a while.

49. Do looks matter? depends what you’re talking about…

50. Could you ever forgive a cheater? depends what they cheated on… but probably.

51. Is your phone bill sky high? nope.  irritating, but not sky high.

52. Do you like your life right now? yes.  love pittsburgh.  love being an artist.  love my husband.  love my friends.

53. Do you sleep with the TV on? um?  why would i do that?

54. Can you handle the truth? most of the time.

55. Do you have good vision? with my glasses on.

56. Do you hate or dislike more than 3 people? sometimes.

57. How often do you talk on the phone? couple times a week?  maybe?

58. The last person you held hands with? my benjamin, while walking today.

59. What are you wearing? a vintage dress purchased for more than i usually purchase vintage dresses for at the goodwill in seattle.  it was a great buy.  i love it.  thanks for talking me into it laurie and ben!

60. What is your favorite animal? dog.  but i can be swayed by cute and furry.

61. Where was your default picture taken? in the backyard.

62. Can you hula hoop? probably at least a bit.

63. Do you have a job? yes.  i make things.

64. What was the most recent thing you bought? furniture from the person who currently rents the house we are going to move in to.

65. Have you ever crawled through a window? yup.  ben and i locked ourselves out and the roommates were on the top floor, so through a window i went.  but not through the window above the piano because that would be silly.


question number three comes from kai, one of my SOAR friends.

she asked how i came up with my personal style.

my glasses

i would say that unique things have always attracted me. this may have to do with my mother. while growing up, we regularly went garage sale-ing, looking for the new and exciting find. i also feel like this has a deeper connection. i inherited my creativity from my mom and what feeds this creativity, style-wise, is finding new and interesting things to wear and surround myself with.  my mom did not apply her creativity quite the same way :D

me and my supernova

i also think that objects can have depth due to the place they take in history, or the person who owned them before me.  that makes the item all the more interesting to me. another thing that certainly didn’t discourage my crazy hair dyeing, glass frame buying, thrift store shopping self, was that my parents didn’t really care about surface stuff, as long as i had good grades and was a good kid.

all that said, i no longer sacrifice for fashion, so the question might be now, do i have much style?!?  ha!

yarn meme…

of one ms cosette cornelius-bates. who knew that there was a fiber version? i’m very pleased that there is :) found over on skaMama.

yarn meme of one ms cosette cornelius-bates

hilariously, i got to use one of my own pics :) and was offered another two, but chose a different. click on the photo above and then move your mouse over the pics to see the answers. i rather like this one better than the last… i’d love to see yours too!

Type your answer to each of the questions below into Flickr search.
Using only the first page, choose an image.
Copy and paste each of the URL’s into the mosaic maker over at FD’s image maker.

What is your first name?
What is your favorite yarn?
What was the first thing you made with yarn?
What is your favorite color?
Which crochet or knitting designer do you have a crush on?
Favorite handmade gift you have received?
Dream project?
Favorite notion?
What will you crochet/ knit next?
What do you love most about yarn?
One word to describe your craft.
Main inspiration to craft.

the game

via pea soup, here’s hers.

the game
notes added in flickr if you want to click on the pic.

The concept:

a. Type your answer to each of the questions below into Flickr Search.
b. Using only the first page, pick an image.
c. Copy and paste each of the URLs for the images into fd’s mosaic maker.

The Questions:

1. What is your first name?
2. What is your favorite food?
3. What high school did you go to?
4. What is your favorite color?
5. Who is your celebrity crush?
6. Favorite drink?
7. Dream vacation?
8. Favorite dessert?
9. What you want to be when you grow up?
10. What do you love most in life?
11. One Word to describe you.
12. Your flickr name

10 years ago…

i was tagged by ska mama for this meme, so i thought i’d oblidge. mid afternoon, it’s sunny. i’ve been knitting a bsj instead of getting ready for the craft fair and the book release party.

1. What was I doing 10 years ago?

ten years ago i was still in school at the university of montana – undergrad, studying art, english and teaching. i was also working part time at a fabulous independent used and bargain bookstore and somewhere around then i moved out of my parents house and was living with my friends in a old ramshackle house in downtown missoula for dirt cheap rent. it used to be a commune and had a home made 10 toothbrush holder in the bathroom when we moved in. can’t tell you how not insulated that house was and how really really cold it was in the winter. i should have thought more about that before i decided that drawing myself nude in november and december was a good idea.

2. What are 5 things on my to-do list for today (not in any particular order)?
clean yoga studio
mail packages
work on bsj
pack up for craft fair
eat, drink, be merry, and sign books at the book release party

3. Snacks I enjoy.
fresh fruit and veggies (especially straight out of the garden or from a farmer’s market)
popcorn – but only the way my husband makes it
ants on a log

4. Things I would do if I were a billionaire.
feed people.
support the arts.
work towards re-structuring of society to less car-based and more community based.

5. Places I have lived
the rocky mountains
the cascade mountains on the coast
the hills of south western pennsylvania

6. Jobs I’ve had.
camp counselor/kitchen aide
hostess at the montana pie co.
sales person etc. at the university of montana bookstore – the art section
clerk and associate manager at The Book Exchange
self-employed fiber artist combined with the odd job here and there and probably to be mixed with a house cleaning job very soon

7. Peeps I want to know more about:
although i will respond when others call on me to meme, i am a shy memer when it comes to calling on others… if you’d like to share with the rest of us, feel free.

have a great weekend!!

p.s. if you’re interested, the book is now back in stock over in the shop!

i’ve been tagged…

for the first time ever (by suzen). now i feel like a real blogger… or something…

Seven Random Things About Me

1) i am a third generation montanan and lived there for the first 26 years of my life. i miss it.

2) most nights i go to bed freezing and wake up like a heater. my husband is opposite.

3) while still in university i dyed my hair old lady purple, unfortunatly i had dyed it too much before then so it faded away quickly and i was very blond for the summer.

4) for the last five years, i’ve dressed up as a color for halloween.

5) i never even thought about having children until i met ben.

6) ben and i kept our own last names for the first three years we were married, then right before we moved to canada, we both hyphenated. now we have really pretentious sounding names to attach to all of our artistic endeavours :)

7) i haven’t shaven my legs since i was 16.

i tag erin, katy, rosehip, jan-knit, and ally – tell us 7 random things about you.

what have i done?

or if you rather, what do i still have to/want to do.  one thing i love about knitting is that there is always so much more to learn.

 my i’m distracted today!

Mark with bold the things you have ever knit, with italics the ones you plan to do sometime, and leave the rest

Garter stitch
Knitting with metal wire
Stockinette stitch
Socks: top-down
Socks: toe-up
Knitting with camel yarn

Mittens: Cuff-up
Mittens: Tip-down
Knitting with silk
Moebius band knitting
Participating in a KAL
Drop stitch patterns
Knitting with recycled/secondhand yarn
Slip stitch patterns
Knitting with banana fiber yarn
Domino knitting (=modular knitting)
Twisted stitch patterns
Knitting with bamboo yarn
Two end knitting
Charity knitting
Knitting with soy yarn
Toy/doll clothing
Knitting with circular needles
Baby items
Knitting with your own handspun yarn
Graffiti knitting
Continental knitting
Designing knitted garments

Cable stitch patterns (incl. Aran)
Lace patterns
Publishing a knitting book -Almost there!
Teaching a child to knit
American/English knitting (as opposed to continental)
Knitting to make money
Button holes
Knitting with alpaca
Fair Isle knitting
Norwegian knitting
Dying with plant colours
Knitting items for a wedding

Household items (dishcloths, washcloths, tea cosies…)
Knitting socks (or other small tubular items) on one or two circulars (i changed this one)
Knitting with someone else’s handspun yarn
Knitting with dpns
Holiday related knitting

Teaching a male how to knit
Knitting for a living – i’m trying!
Knitting with cotton
Knitting smocking
Dying yarn
Knitting art

Knitting two socks on two circulars simultaneously
Knitting with wool
Textured knitting
Kitchener BO
Knitting with beads
Long Tail CO
Knitting and purling backwards
Machine knitting
Knitting with self patterning/self striping/variegating yarn
Stuffed toys
Baby items
Knitting with cashmere
Knitting with synthetic yarn
Writing a pattern
Knitting with linen
Knitting for preemies
Tubular CO
Freeform knitting
Short rows
Cuffs/fingerless mits/armwarmers
Knitting a pattern from an online knitting magazine
Knitting on a loom
Thrummed knitting
Knitting a gift
Knitting for pets
Knitting with dog/cat hair
Hair accessories
Knitting in public

what have you learned to do that has marked a definite change in your knitting life? i recall both learning to to cable without a cable needle from this marvelous tutorial and learning how to do short row tows and heels from this fabulous pattern as enhancing my knowledge and changing the way i do things.

i got this from elan knits who got it from yoshimi knits.

my own personal book meme

so. i was thinking about that meme and what a random group of books it is. so, i pulled this list from the website of image journal. the reasoning behind the list is here. i came to regent to study the link in between christianity and the arts, so you can see how this list fits me much better. although i’ve read and liked many of those books on the other list, some of these authors certainly have my heart.

bolding if i’ve read it (or bits and pieces of it)
italicizing if i own it, but haven’t read it

and i put an alternate book by the same author behind (they only allowed one book/author) if i’ve read another book and liked it

W.H. Auden Collected Poems
Georges Bernanos The Diary of a Country Priest
Wendell Berry Sabbaths – i adore wendell berry and own many of his books
John Berryman 77 Dream Songs
Doris Betts Souls Raised from the Dead – Heading West
Leon Bloy The Woman Who Was Poor
Heinrich Boll The Stories of Heinrich Boll
Robert Bolt A Man for All Seasons
Ray Bradbury Something Wicked This Way Comes
George Mackay Brown Selected Poems
Frederic Buechner Godric – his first three memoirs are amazing
Scott Cairns Recovered Body
Willa Cather Death Comes for the Archbishop
G.K. Chesterton The Man Who Was Thursday
Paul Claudel The Satin Slipper
Elizabeth Dewberry Many Things Have Happened Since He Died – Sacrament of Lies
Annie Dillard Pilgrim at Tinker Creek – Holy the Firm
Andre Dubus Selected Stories
T.S. Eliot Four Quartets – Essays
Alice Thomas Ellis The Sin Eater
Shusaku Endo Silence
William Everson Collected Poems (The Residual Years; The Veritable Years)
Horton Foote The Trip to Bountiful
Christopher Fry The Lady’s Not for Burning
Denise Giardina Saints and Villains
Jose Maria Gironella The Cypresses Believe in God
Julien Green Diaries
Graham Greene The Power and the Glory
Patricia Hampl Virgin Time
Ron Hansen Mariette in Ecstasy – Atticus: a Novel (great book)
Mark Helprin A Soldier of the Great War – Winter’s Tale

Oscar Hijuelos Mr. Ives’ Christmas
Geoffrey Hill The Mystery of the Charity of Charles Peguy
Edward Hirsch Earthly Measures
Paul Horgan Great River
Andrew Hudgins The Neverending
John Irving A Prayer for Owen Meany
Josephine Jacobsen In the Crevice of Time: New and Selected Poems
Mark Jarman Questions for Ecclesiastes
Elizabeth Jennings Collected Poems
David Jones The Anathemata
Nikos Kazantzakis The Last Temptation of Christ
Thomas Keneally Three Cheers for the Paraclete
William Kennedy Ironweed
Wally Lamb I Know This Much is True – She’s Come Undone
Anne Lamott Traveling Mercies – Operating Instructions is my fav.
Madeleine L’Engle A Wrinkle in Time – I’ve read a lot of her
Denise Levertov The Stream and the Sapphire
Philip Levine The Mercy
C.S. Lewis Till We Have Faces – Narnia Series among others
Torgny Lindgren Light
Robert Lowell Lord Weary’s Castle
Paul Mariani Salvage Operations
Francois Mauriac Viper’s Tangle
Alice McDermott Charming Billy
Thomas Merton Collected Poems
Vassar Miller If I Had Wheels or Love: Collected Poems
Walter Miller A Canticle for Leibowitz
Czeslaw Milosz Collected Poems
Brian Moore Black Robe
Robert Morgan The Truest Pleasure
Malcolm Muggeridge Chronicles of Wasted Time
Edwin Muir Complete Poems
Les Murray Collected Poems
Kathleen Norris Dakota – I’ve read most of her books
Patrick O’Brian The Aubrey/Maturin Novels
Flannery O’Connor Short Stories – Mystery of Manners (bits)
Virginia Stem Owens If You Do Love Old Men
Katherine Paterson Jacob Have I Loved – Love her kids books
Charles Peguy The Mystery of the Charity of Joan of Arc
Walker Percy The Moviegoer – Second Coming
David Plante The Francoeur Trilogy
Chaim Potok My Name is Asher Lev
J.F. Powers The Presence of Grace
Reynolds Price Three Gospels
Richard Rodriguez Hunger of Memory

Dorothy Sayers The Mind of the Maker – Mystery novels, plays
Ignazio Silone Bread and Wine
Louis Simpson New and Selected Poems
Isaac Bashevis Singer Collected Stories
Aleksandr Solzhenitsyn One Day in the Life of Ivan Denisovich
Muriel Spark Memento Mori
Tom Stoppard Hapgood
John Heath Stubbs Collected Poems
Allen Tate Collected Poems
J.R.R. Tolkien The Lord of the Rings
Anne Tyler Saint Maybe
Sigrid Undset Kristin Lavransdatter – I’ve been looking for the good translation for a while now…
John Updike In the Beauty of the Lillies
Peter de Vries The Blood of the Lamb
Dan Wakefield Returning
Walter Wangerin, Jr. The Book of the Dun Cow
Evelyn Waugh Brideshead Revisited
Elie Wiesel Night
Richard Wilbur New and Collected Poems
Charles Williams All Hallows’ Eve
A.N. Wilson Wise Virgin
Tim Winton Cloudstreet
Larry Woiwode Beyond the Bedroom Wall

Tobias Wolff In the Garden of the North American Martyrs

i’ve got a lot to go here!  i started collecting many of these while i worked at the book store.  any on this list that you think i should read next?

another list of books i’d like to find is the pre-vatican II list of banned books by the Catholic Church.  i know that at least one of these above (Last Temptation of Christ) made that list.  i want to find this one just because my curiousity is peaked.

book meme

my first meme! stolen off of another blog, but i’d been seeing it around. it’s hard for me not to be excited about books. i love reading and worked in a bookstore during university and as an associate manager after university (7 years total!). i couldn’t just let this one go without commentary… so see the bottom if you want to know what i’m most embarrased about and what i loved the most.

Look at the list of books below:
* Bold the ones you’ve read,
* Italicize the ones you want to read
* Leave blank the ones that you aren’t interested in.

1. The DaVinci Code (Dan Brown)
2. Pride and Prejudice (Jane Austen)
3. To Kill A Mockingbird (Harper Lee)
4. Gone With The Wind (Margaret Mitchell)
5. The Lord of the Rings: Return of the King (Tolkien)
6. The Lord of the Rings: Fellowship of the Ring (Tolkien)
7. The Lord of the Rings: Two Towers (Tolkien)
8. Anne of Green Gables (L.M. Montgomery)
9. Outlander (Diana Gabaldon)
10. A Fine Balance (Rohinton Mistry)
11. Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire (Rowling)
12. Angels and Demons (Dan Brown)
13. Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix (Rowling)
14. A Prayer for Owen Meany (John Irving)
15. Memoirs of a Geisha (Arthur Golden)
16. Harry Potter and the Philosopher’s Stone (Rowling)
17. Fall on Your Knees (Ann-Marie MacDonald)
18. The Stand (Stephen King)
19. Harry Potter and the Prisoner of Azkaban (Rowling)
20. Jane Eyre (Charlotte Bronte)
21. The Hobbit (Tolkien)
22. The Catcher in the Rye (J.D. Salinger)
23. Little Women (Louisa May Alcott)
24. The Lovely Bones (Alice Sebold)
25. Life of Pi (Yann Martel)
26. The Hitchhiker’s Guide to the Galaxy (Douglas Adams)
27. Wuthering Heights (Emily Bronte)
28. The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe (C. S. Lewis)
29. East of Eden (John Steinbeck)
30. Tuesdays with Morrie (Mitch Albom)
31. Dune (Frank Herbert)
32. The Notebook (Nicholas Sparks)
33. Atlas Shrugged (Ayn Rand)
34. 1984 (Orwell)
35. The Mists of Avalon (Marion Zimmer Bradley)
36. The Pillars of the Earth (Ken Follett)
37. The Power of One (Bryce Courtenay)
38. I Know This Much is True (Wally Lamb)
39. The Red Tent (Anita Diamant)
40. The Alchemist (Paulo Coelho)
41. The Clan of the Cave Bear (Jean M. Auel)
42. The Kite Runner (Khaled Hosseini)
43. Confessions of a Shopaholic (Sophie Kinsella)
44. The Five People You Meet In Heaven (Mitch Albom)
45. The Bible
46. Anna Karenina (Tolstoy)
47. The Count of Monte Cristo (Alexandre Dumas)
48. Angela’s Ashes (Frank McCourt)
49. The Grapes of Wrath (John Steinbeck)
50. She’s Come Undone (Wally Lamb)
51. The Poisonwood Bible (Barbara Kingsolver
52. A Tale of Two Cities (Dickens)
53. Ender’s Game (Orson Scott Card)
54. Great Expectations (Dickens)
55. The Great Gatsby (Fitzgerald)
56. The Stone Angel (Margaret Laurence)
57. Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets (Rowling)
58. The Thorn Birds (Colleen McCullough)
59. The Handmaid’s Tale (Margaret Atwood)
60. The Time Traveller’s Wife (Audrew Niffenegger)
61. Crime and Punishment (Fyodor Dostoyevsky)
62. The Fountainhead (Ayn Rand)
63. War and Peace (Tolstoy)
64. Interview With The Vampire (Anne Rice)
65. Fifth Business (Robertson Davis)
66. One Hundred Years Of Solitude (Gabriel Garcia Marquez)
67. The Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants (Ann Brashares)
68. Catch-22 (Joseph Heller)
69. Les Miserables (Hugo)
70. The Little Prince (Antoine de Saint-Exupery)
71. Bridget Jones’ Diary (Fielding)
72. Love in the Time of Cholera (Marquez)
73. Shogun (James Clavell)
74. The English Patient (Michael Ondaatje)
75. The Secret Garden (Frances Hodgson Burnett)
76. The Summer Tree (Guy Gavriel Kay)
77. A Tree Grows in Brooklyn (Betty Smith)
78. The World According to Garp (John Irving)
79. The Diviners (Margaret Laurence)
80. Charlotte’s Web (E.B. White)
81. Not Wanted On The Voyage (Timothy Findley)
82. Of Mice And Men (Steinbeck)
83. Rebecca (Daphne DuMaurier)
84. Wizard’s First Rule (Terry Goodkind)
85. Emma (Jane Austen)
86. Watership Down(Richard Adams)
87. Brave New World (Aldous Huxley)
88. The Stone Diaries (Carol Shields)
89. Blindness (Jose Saramago)
90. Kane and Abel (Jeffrey Archer)
91. In The Skin Of A Lion (Ondaatje)
92. Lord of the Flies (Golding)
93. The Good Earth (Pearl S. Buck)
94. The Secret Life of Bees (Sue Monk Kidd)
95. The Bourne Identity (Robert Ludlum)
96. The Outsiders (S.E. Hinton)
97. White Oleander (Janet Fitch)
98. A Woman of Substance (Barbara Taylor Bradford)
99. The Celestine Prophecy (James Redfield)
100. Ulysses (James Joyce)

most embarrassing – Bridget Jones (yuck!)
most embarrassing in completely another way – my namesake – Les Miserables
i’m listening to emma free online here
one of my all time favorites is A Fine Balance – heartbreaking, but brilliant
needs re-reading – The Count of Monte Cristo
better get reading those russian masters!
secret love (not so much to people who know me) – children’s literature

does anyone know where this meme came from and why these particular books are on it? just curious.