Thursday, October 30, 2008

Romantic At Heart

I must confess, I'm a romantic at heart! I do believe this started when I was in the eighth grade. During the summer my teacher had suggested a number of books to read - a couple were written by ladies with the same last name - Bronte. The rest is history! A true romantic was born.

Now, I've mentioned before our dear daughter and son-in-law lived in England for a couple of years. On one of our visits to see them, dear daughter had planned a trip just for me! You see, I had introduced her to the famous Bronte sisters. We hopped on this little steam train and headed to a little town, Haworth, on the Yorkshire moors. This, Dearest Ones, was the home of the Bronte sisters: Charlotte, Emily and Anne.

We were thrilled to see the magic and charm of this little town on the hillside.

Doesn't this just look like a fairy tale town?

But first things first! It's lunchtime and we had to have some Yorkshire Pudding - it is made from batter and most often served with roast beef, vegetables and served with gravy. Ye Olde Bronte Tea Room had to be the place!

After lunch it was time to tour the home (parsonage) of the famous Bronte sisters.
This is the only existing painting of the sisters. Anne is on the left, Emily in the middle and Charlotte is on the right. This portrait hangs in their home and was painted by their brother, Branwell Bronte, whom himself wrote poems. Look closely and you'll see an outline of a figure that is no longer there. He painted himself in, but later painted himself out. He lived a very troubled life.

These ladies were daughters of a very strict Anglican clergyman who was the pastor of this church. Their mother died at an early age. They all at one time went off to attend school, but eventually ended back up at the parsonage (their home).

The graveyard is right in front of the parsonage. It was eery looking, but at the same time beautiful.

The time of our visit was the end of October and the leaves were turning.
Elizabeth Gaskell, a friend, wrote their bio and that is how the world has come to know about their lives. She writes of three girls who grew up on the wild and isolated moors, spending most of their time together writing stories which was their passion.
Now to the romance...
This is the start of my romantic heart! How clever I am! ;) Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte. Have you read it?
It was made into a movie in 1944! There is a newer version, but I still prefer the old black and white movie staring Joan Fontaine and Orson Wells.
If you get the change to read this book - PLEASE DO! If you get the chance to see the old movie - PLEASE DO!

But this, Dearest Ones, is my all time favorite book by Emily Bronte - Wuthering Heights! If you've not read this, you really don't know what you're missing. This is a story told in a backflash by the housekeeper. She tells of a doomed and tragic love, conflicting passions and revenge.'s just wonderful! Cathy and Heathcliff, be still my heart.
This wonderful literary work was also made into a movie in 1939, staring Merle Oberon and Laurence Olivier, before he was a 'Sir'! They both were at their most beautiful, I believe, in this movie. Again, there is a later version of this movie, but I just love the black and white one.

Look, Heathcliff, the heather on the moors...the heather!

Oh, just to look at this picture fills my heart with pain and my eyes are filling up with tears...
At the museum, look what is there: the headstone from Heathcliff's grave..

and the headstone from Cathy's grave.
Dearest Darlings, it's true, they don't make them like they used to...books or movies. If you haven't had the pleasure of reading some of the literature from these sisters, and even their brother wrote a book of poetry, go to your library and check out Jane Eyre and Wuthering Heights. I don't think you'll be disappointed and you may find out ~ you're a romantic at heart, too!

Be sweeties,

I'll not leave you with a Note Song today, but some words that really go to my heart spoken by Heathcliff from Wuthering Heights:
"...and I pray my prayer - I'll repeat it till my tongue stiffens - Catherine Earnshaw, may you not rest as long as I am living; you said I killed you - haunt me, then! I know the murdered do haunt their murderers! I know that ghosts have wandered on earth. Be with me always - take any form - drive me mad! Only do not leave me in this abyss, where I cannot find you! Oh, God! It is ununtterable! I CANNOT live without my life! I CANNOT life without my soul!"


  1. Shelia, you surprise me! You are an English teacher today! And, a good one, too!

  2. I agree with Sal--you are an English teacher Sheila. I love the photos of the town where the Brontes lived. It does look like a fairy tale. How neat that you could see it in person. That's the kind of trip I dream of taking some day.

  3. WOW...what a lovely post.

    I never read either book, but did see the movies...and they were great.

    I think I've ALWAYS been a romantic at heart. I remember so many "pretties" I had or wanted as a kid...and on my 10th birthday, the pretty black and white, organza and velvet dress my Grandmother bought for me...along with nylons...and patent leather shoes. I felt so PRETTY...and that, was one early romantic memory...and there are more.


  4. Move over Shelia...I'm a romantic at heart too! Oh, Wuthering Heights (the black & white) is one of my all time favorites...what a wonderful experience you and your daughter shared visiting the Bronte homeplace! ;-) Bo

  5. Sheila...What a wonderful post this morning... You made me feel as if I were there... Thanks for the lesson and a beautiful tour...You are a sweetheart....


  6. I've never read either of their books. I just don't know if it's my kind of thing. But I think the next time I'm at the library I'll check them out. Won't hurt, and possibly could be enlightening!

    Justiney :o )

  7. Sheila, what a wonderful story and pics about the Bronte family. Good job dear one. I read these books when I was a girl. I also have seen all of the movies more than once. This family of writers was outstanding. I so enjoyed your history of them. A beautiful post today.


  8. Good Morning Lady Sheila!

    What an enchanting travel we had this morning! I'm so glad we stopped for tea and Yorkshire pudding :). Ah yes, I don't recall reading any of Lady Charlotte's books perhaps I shall put it on my to read list.

    Until our next adventure!
    Kathi :)

  9. I too have read the books and watched all versions of the movies. But there is something about black and white that just seems right.

  10. Shelia~ beautiful post and the pictures are amazing! Now I have to find those books! :)

    Hugs, J

  11. Oh Shelia what a great history story today..and the moors of England were those not beautiful?? how lucky were you to see this..and the movie Wuthering Heights I have seen many things..I loved your story today..hugs and smiles Gloria

  12. Hi Sheila, thanks for stopping by and checking out my pumpkin wreath(hehehe)! Hayworth does look like a fairy tale town. Your post is beautiful! Kristen

  13. WOW that does look like some kind of enchanting fairy tale town. BEAUTIFUL pictures. I have never read these books but I might have to.....LOVE your choice of the music playing today!

  14. Love it too!!♥♥♥♥! Kathy

  15. As the others have all said,You taught alittle history today.I think you missed your calling.You would've made a very---interesting teacher.
    My favorite is Weightering Heights too.What a story.Oh,th wasted love,well I guess it wasn't wasted....Ann

  16. You really are a romantic!! Thanks for sharing its roots with us today. Sally

  17. What a beautiful post you made for us today. It was both magical and educational. The photos are beautiful also. I have heard of both the novels and movies, but I only saw the movies years ago. You make me want to now go get the books to read. Thank you, for sharing all this wonderful information with us today.


  18. What a beautiful post you made for us today. It was both magical and educational. The photos are beautiful also. I have heard of both the novels and movies, but I only saw the movies years ago. You make me want to now go get the books to read. Thank you, for sharing all this wonderful information with us today.


  19. Sorry, I'm riding in the RV as I was hitting post, we bounced, so I put it on twice,LOL

  20. What an amazing trip...the pictures of the town were definitely story book worthy!! The third one down actually made me gasp! I've never read any of those books or seen the movies. I guess I'm just not a mooshie romantic kind of girl. I like a good serial killer and some spine chilling! Have a marvelous day...and thanks for the kind words and birthday wishes!

  21. Thanks Ann for your comments. Love...wasted? Oh, I hope not! Thanks for the compliments.
    Be a sweetie,
    Shelia ;)

  22. Good morning Shelia... what a lovely town... my romantic heart is telling me I must go there some day, or visit some other place similar to it.... the funny, or weird thing, is that although I'm a 100% romantic at heart for some things, I'm not the "romantic" love type of person... you know, the kisses, the "I'm laying down my heart for you 'cause I'm lonely, feelin' blue" kindda of stuff! :)

    Well, you have a lovely weekend, sweet lady!


  23. Oh Sheila, This is the bestest post ever! :) What a wonderful trip...I want to go! My major was English, so I spent quite a bit of time with English authors and poets! LOL! I did not know the sisters had a brother. And I also didn't know that movies were made in reference to the books! I'm going to Ebay to see if I can find them! Thanks so much for sharing!

    ~hugs, Rhonda :)

  24. An extremely moving post as I viewed the photos and read your reviews I think I will go and get the "Wuthering Heights" book...this time of year with the garden closed I have more time to cuddle and read...and why not a moving love story..
    The images of the town are similar to what I saw in small villages in France and Germany when I visited and blogged about in August. Thank you for this lovely post! hugs NG

  25. Shelia I absolutely loved this post today! I read Jane Eyre many years ago and thoroughly enjoyed it, I'm smiling now because my sisters always wondered about my fascination with English Literature! But I just loved the romance, I always felt for poor Mrs Rochester, such a lonely life she must have had! then I came across this book "Wild Sargasso Sea' which is a prequel to Jane Eyre and it tells of the early life of 'Mrs Rochester' before she married Mr Rochester, I thoroughly enjoyed it! You can check it out here if you like.

    Sorry this comment is sooo long, I enjoyed your pictures too!

  26. Sheila my sweetie... I had to come back and share your beautiful post with my DH... It so moved me tis morning... I read Jane Eye & Wuthering Heights when I was in school... It was required reading in English Composition... I loved both books & of course movies... I am an classic mocie girlie thanks to my dear departed mother...

    HUGS Again...

  27. Shelia, I love, love, love this post. I am a long-time fan of the works of the Bronte family. It is so interesting to me the works that were produced from such a strict upbringing and way of life.

    I don't know if you ever noticed, but I have Jane Eyre on my sidebar as a four star read.

  28. Oh I loved this series.

    Did you know one of the sisters sole from one of them and published the book under her name ?

    And it's been said that there home is haunted by the brother that was very jealous and depressed ?

    I too love the black and white versions much better.


  29. Great Post Sheila,
    It just so happens that my book club is reading Jane Eyre in Nov. I just bought my own copy. You'll have to stop by and take part in our discussion in Dec. (I'll remind you) But now I want to finish it really fast so I can read Wuthering Heights too. I own it, but I haven't read it yet.

  30. My dream trip is a trip to England. Thank you for showing me a little tour right from my home.



  31. What a charming town, it's so pretty! I read Wuthing Heights and Jayne Eyre years and years ago...I won't say exactly HOW long ago! lol! Looks like y'all had a grand time!


  32. I have not had the pleasure of reading any of the books. I do have faint memories of seeing bits and pieces of the movies.

    You have inspired me to read and watch the movies.

    take care,

  33. Shelia, What a beautiful post. The tour of the town was wonderful. It does look like it came out of a fairy tale. The cemetery was intriguing. I enjoy genealogy and like to visit old cemeteries. The stones often tell stories or create mysteries. I remember Heathcliff from Wuthering Heights. I read the book years and years ago. Now I am anxious to read it again.

  34. Oh such charm in England. I think if I lived in that charming village, I might be a writer too! I have read both books and seen all of the movies -totaly agree that they do not make them like they used to (movies or love stories). What a wonderful post. Now, I hope both of those movies will be showing on Turner Classics soon. laurie

  35. Hiya Mum,

    Well you got me - I cried. I don't know if it was tears of joy from the memory of your wonderful visit, or tears of pain for Heathcliff!
    I loved seeing the village of Haworth again - it is such a loverly place. I was so happy that I got to expreience it with you. I can vividly remember uzzz watching the old black & white - sniff, sniff.


  36. oH, Sheila...I really enjoyed this interesting and I love the sisters, too. I also love the old black and white movies. The new ones are never as good.
    Thanks for a wonderful time...

  37. Ah, yes, I have read both of those books---because I was forced to in school!!! I can tell you I did not enjoy them then---youth can sometimes be so stupid!!! I have since seen the movies and loved them. Now, my dear Shelia, you "rattled my cage", as the saying goes. I must make time to reread those books. I know my take on them, so maaaaannnnnnny years later, will be much improved and appreciative!
    I loved catching up on your posts---such a great moment to see your newest Diva at J. Carter's!!!!! Lordy, this is a fun idea of yours! Also loved your tablescape and the "buggy eyes" of sweet C.Dawn as she snarfs down a little goodie!!

    Have a great Friday! dana

  38. Having visited Haworth, you must better appreciate the darkness that pervaded the Brontes' books. Their sitting room overlooked a graveyard and the village is surrounded by wild, cold moorland.

    No wonder their books are so passionate.

    Haworth is hardly the place to dream up witty social comedies!

    Elaine Saunders
    Author - Fiction Writing Exercises
    Complete Text

  39. Hi Shelia :)

    Wonderful post! I love Jane Eyre and how could I not? Orson Wells was smokin' hot! ;)

    I'm so glad my button explaination worked! Yay!!


  40. Hi Shelia,
    I want to go there! You did a great job of describing the area. I love those books!

  41. Heathcliff from Wuthering Heights on screen in black and white, nothing better!! I was a (younger) girl when I first saw this movie...oh my, what a phenomenal movie. It's a classic that I could watch, again and again.... To see the photographs of those headstones litterally gave me chills. thank you sooo much for sharing!!!

    Sweet Wishes,

  42. Wuthering Heights was the first romance I ever read! What a wonderful trip, and how great of your daughter to plan it for you. It really is a storybook village!


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