When this happens at our house, we generally reach for a classic movie and bring out the pillows. The longer the movie, the better. Meals are leftovers or cold cuts served from the kitchen countertop. Fresh cherries or grapes, or apples with peanut butter, are available for the snacking. After a few hours of laughter, tears, and general escapism, we're ready for another round of busy days.
Here are some of our favorite long classics for those days when we need some downtime. (Note: none of these are good for small children, but my teen girls enjoy these movies as much as I do.)
- Cranford. Based on the stories of Elizabeth Gaskell. The ladies of Cranford deal with etiquette, tradition, a new young doctor, and the shocking advent of the railroad in 1840s England. It's a story of friendship and fidelity, tragedy and unexpected joy.
- Wives and Daughters. Also based on the stories of Elizabeth Gaskell. It's a different kind of Cinderella story. There's no prince, but there is a hateful stepmother and a selfish stepsister, and happiness at the end.
- Sense and Sensibility. Based on the book by Jane Austen. Sisters grapple with understanding Love. Is it a fleeting fancy, a fervency of emotion, or a quiet faithfulness? When they relocate with their mother to a remote district, they discover their friends are not entirely what they seem.
- Little Dorrit. Based on the book by Charles Dickens. A young seamstress with a father who lives in a debtors prison learns about life and trust as circumstances propel her from wealth to poverty and back again.
- Les Miserables. Musical, based on the book by Victor Hugo. This redemptive story of crime, justice, adoption, and grace, is set amidst the era of the French Revolution. Bring out the tissues.
Don't forget the ice cream! Relax and renew - it's summertime. :)