Tuesday, February 22, 2011


Yesterday I was thinking of all the ways I would like to improve myself by more self-discipline, and I was reminded of this passage from Jane Austen's Sense and Sensibility when Marianne, contrite over letting her emotions run away with her in her disastrous love affair with Willoughby, has this to say:

I mean never to be later in rising than six,
and from that time till dinner I shall divide
every moment between music and reading.
I have formed my plan, and am determined to
enter on a course of serious study.  Our own library
is too well known to me to be resorted to for anything
beyond mere amusement.  But there are many works
well worth reading, at the Park; and there are others
of more modern production which I know I can
borrow of Colonel Brandon.  By reading only six
hours a-day, I shall gain in the course of a twelve-
month a great deal of instruction which I now feel
myself to want.

Elinor honoured her for a plan which originated so
nobly as this; though smiling to see the same eager
fancy which had been leading her to the extreme
of languid indolence and selfish repining, now at
work in introducing excess into a scheme of such
rational employment and virtuous self-controul.

So, today, I am going to try to find the balance between "languid indolence" and "virtuous  self-controul."  So far, so good.  The children have been fed, and a load of laundry put in the wash.  I found the quote I was looking for and wrote this blog post.  Now I'm off to find some rational employment.
Now there's a man worthy of her affections.

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