• Book Love,  History Love

    Quickie Book Review: A Land As God Made It

    A Land As God Made It: Jamestown and the Birth of America is a book that I picked up on a whim about two or three years ago during the going-out-of-business sale at our local Borders. Jamestown is not necessarily a topic that I’m totally crazy about – in general early British colonization is not really my thing when it comes to reading for pleasure. But it was like, 75% off, and it is a topic I have to teach about every year, so I figured “why not?” Since then I’ve tried picking it up several times, only to get about 15 pages in before I put it down and…

  • History Love,  Holidays,  Life,  Links,  Lists

    Happy 4th of July!

    Happy Independence Day to all my US based readers! Here are some links I’ve rounded up to help bring some History to your day, both fun and serious! Fun Stuff: – These prints from SharpWriter – after all, what’s more ‘Merican than Teddy Roosevelt fighting Big Foot with a Tommy Gun while holding an American Flag? – These shirts by Lizzywhimsy – Next time I have some extra $$ I’m definitely buying the Cane Fight! tee. – Retro Campaigns – Retrocampaigns.com sells retro campaign tees from presidential races through the years. Their shop is currently down, as apparently they’re launching a new site soon, but their tumblr is still up…

  • Book Love,  History Love,  Photography,  Travel

    FINALLY Finished.

    Today I have some photos from our annual end-of-the-year retreat with the students at the lake property our university owns, and some good news! I FINALLY finished First into Nagasaki. This has become the breaking point for me, and I’ve finally just accepted that I cannot read for pleasure during the semester. It’s simply not possible. This book should have taken me a week max, and instead it took me a whole semester. I think I just have to accept it. That said, the book was a great read. Some amazing insights into Japan post-surrender, and some amazing stories from the POW camps. It can occasionally be a little plodding,…

  • History Love,  Links

    A Gathering of Rosies

    It’s no secret that I love Rosie the Riveter. I’ve been her for Halloween more than once, and have a large tin reproduction of the famous “We Can Do It” poster on my desk… although – fun historical tidbit here: though “Rosie the Riveter” has been around as a cultural icon since WWII, that poster is not actually “Rosie” and in fact didn’t become associated with the term “Rosie the Riveter” until the 1980’s when the poster was rediscovered. Until then the most famous non-photography Rosie image was a Rockwell cover for the Saturday Evening Post that most people probably wouldn’t recognize today. But anyway, maybe one day I’ll write…

  • History Love,  Life,  Nail Polish Love

    The First Accurate Mani Monday

    Happy Monday everyone! It’s been a difficult few days here at Magpie Making Do – my grandmother had some surgery (it was minor and went well, but there’s always anxiety when she has to be put under and stay in the hospital now that she’s past 80 years of age) and one of my parents’ cats, Genghis Khan (who really been “my” cat since we got him as a kitten 13 years ago. I was in 8th grade and he immediately attached himself to me and hasn’t let go since – and neither have I for that matter) is not doing well at all. My mom and I had a…

  • History Love

    World War I Diaries

    So, since the centennial of the start of World War I is this year, the Imperial War Museum and the British National Archives have joined together in a massive project to digitize what will eventually be 1.5 million pages of WWI Diaries to make available to the public. Naturally, this is a MASSIVE task, and so they’re doing something really interesting (and awesome if you’re a history nerd like me) by using crowd sourcing to help classify and tag them all. I’m all about historical outreach, and first person account and war diaries are kind of my thing, so I sure know where my weekend is going… let’s not talk…