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Good Riddance

Oh, Summer.  I am so done with you.  I’m hoping you’re just about done with me as well.  But if the 110+ degrees are any indication, that doesn’t seem to be the case.  How I long for the crisp, cool days of autumn.  The joy of traipsing through the morning dew at early morning soccer games.  The steam rising up out of that necessary day-beginning cup of coffee.  The fresh laundry scent of the heavy comforter, recently removed from storage.  The caramel and apple cinammon candles scenting up the home.  Slow-cooker aromas – roasts, stews, soups.  The plush coziness of the favorite sweatshirt and jammie pants.  Carl’s RIP Challenge.  *sigh*

Please, Mother Nature…please!!!!!!!

I can’t bear any more of the sweltering sun.  The oppressive heat as a drive home from work in my air-conditionless car.  (Damn you, extended warranty, for not covering the important things.)  The searching for a wardrobe that isn’t only cool, but also camoflauges the sweat stains covering my body after traveling anywhere.  The evenings of arriving home from yet another crazy day at work, and not having a single ounce of energy, only a desire to lie in front of the fan…and .. just…not…move. 

Sure, Summer, we’ve had our fun.  Lots of swimming.  Some outdoor concerts.  Our first family camping/fishing trip.  The discovery of lots of great new authors & series.  But you’ve overstayed your welcome.  It’s time for us to part ways.  On your way out, please hold open the door for Autumn, if you’d be so kind. 

Good riddance.

 

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Posted by on August 3, 2012 in Uncategorized

 

Any Little Excuse

My work was kind enough to give us the day off.  I guess to properly recover from any New Year celebration revelry that may have lapsed over into Sunday/Monday.  Long overdue renovations and repairs began in our home today.  Let me tell you, five adults and two children is entirely too many people to have in one little house, especially when three of those adults are trying to move ladders, tubs of paint, scrapers and various other equipment throughout the rooms.  So I decided it was THE perfect excuse to take the kiddos and go explore the going-out-of-business sale at the outlet mall’s bookstore.

Oklahoma City was lucky enough to have a beautiful, brand spankin’ new outlet mall open up just a few months ago.  I’m not quite sure why the bookstore is already going out of business. I find that to be a sad state of affairs in the world (curse you e-books!), but that’s a topic for another time.  And really…any excuse to go to a booksale is a-ok with me.

I was surprised by the quality of the selection.  I was fully expecting just stacks of remainder books, but I was pleasantly surprised to find a wide variety of fiction and non-fiction titles, and best of all, an entire food writing section!   Here’s what I purchased – for a mere $14, I might add 🙂

1.  Rude Awakenings of a Jane Austen Addict – Laurie Viera Rigler –  I’ve had this on my TBR list for some time, but my local library doesn’t stock it. So yay for finding it for dirt cheap!

2.  Horsemen of the Esophagus: Competitive Eating and the Big Fat American Dream –  Jason Fagone – I’ve been eyeing this one for some time. So glad to find a copy.

3.  Alone in the Kitchen With An Eggplant – Edited by Jenni Ferrari-Adler –  I LOVE this book, and have checked it out numerous times from the library. I must admit, I did a little happy dance and accompanying squeal when I saw it on the shelf!

4.  On The Threshold: Home, Hardwood & Holiness – Elizabeth J. Andrew – I thought this looked super intriguing.  A book of essays about home & faith, very timely in my life.

5.  Familyhood – Paul Reiser –  I’ve been a Paul Reiser fan for many, many years, and adding Familyhood, his newest, will complete my collection, which also consists of Couplehood and Babyhood.

6.  Someday My Prince Will Come:  True Adventures of a Wannabe Princess – Jerramy Fine – This looks super cute. I can’t wait to read it!

7.  Life, Death & Bialys:  A Father/Son Baking Story – Dylan Schaffer – Have I mentioned my weakness for food writing?

8.  Bright Lights, Big Ass – Jen Lancaster – I LOVE Jen Lancaster.  She never fails to crack me up:)  And although I’ve already read this one, I went ahead and picked up a copy to gift to someone.

9.  Spoon Fed:  How Eight Cooks Saved My Life – Kim Severson – See aforementioned food writing writing.

In my opinion, some excellent finds!  Now, if you’ll excuse me…I’m off to read.

 

Hiding Songs

It’s that time again, when the dark is surrounding me, nothing but the glow of the computer screen. The only sound the whir of the fan over the sound of music in my earphones.

Music.  My saving grace.  The thing that pulls me out when I reach my very lowest points  in life.  I want to slither my body into the music, immerse myself in it fully, until you can’t tell where I am.  Hide in the music.  Yes…that’s it exactly.

Many things are weighing me down.  Things that eat me up inside and age me outside.  I’m trying to release them, discard them from me like a dirty jacket, but they won’t go.  They. Just. Won’t. Go.

Meet my hiding songs.

Eli Lieb – “I’m losing sight of you again tonight.”

Lori McKenna – “All I ever do is work, all I ever do is pray.  But I do know that I have for you a love that never fades, and it’s okay, if it’s all I ever do.”

Angus & Julia Stone – “Am I not what you wanted?”

Damien Rice – “And if you hate me, then hate me so good that you can let me out, let me out, let me out of this hell in your arms.”

And, of course, my Adele. – “I won’t let you close enough to hurt me.”

That’s where I’ll be.  In the song.

 
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Posted by on October 24, 2011 in Uncategorized

 

And the Rockets Red Glare….

I hope you all have a wonderfully blessed day, full of family & friends, good food, and lots of smiles.  Please be sure to give an extra tight hug to those who have fought so valiantly for our freedom.  They are, after all, the reason that we are able to celebrate this day.

In our neck of the woods, we plan on attending our friend Cory’s Annual 4th of July shindig.  This will, though, be the first year that my Dad, my sister and my niece will be coming to join us in the celebrating.  I’m SO excited that they are coming!  I plan on having lots and lots of stories and photos to share following the event.  So far now, Happy 4th to you all, and I can’t wait to hear about your celebrations as well!

 
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Posted by on July 4, 2011 in Uncategorized

 

Removed

It’s been a very tough year for me. For my family. For my friends.  I feel as if I’m watching someone’s life from outside a window.  Removed, if you will.

The year kicked off with my baby sister being in a terrible car accident.  Her tire blew out, sending her SUV into a roll, and she was thrown from the sunroof.  I haven’t spoken of this on here, simply because I never felt strong enough to put it into words.  The grief, the struggle, the absolute desperation that watching her battles evoked in me was indescribable.  For much of my life, I’ve had horrific nightmare of losing her in a car accident, so to watch her endure the many surgeries, rehabilitation and just flat-out pain following the accident, it was like watching those dreams come to life.  Thankfully…she is MUCH stronger than I, and five months later, she is walking again and her life is slowly becoming normal again.  Every time I see her, I want to hold on as tight as I possibly can, to protect her from any further danger.  I know this isn’t feasible or realistic – but trust me, if I could, I would. I pray daily that she will never have to suffer through anything even remotely as painful again in her life.

Just when I felt like I was getting back on my feet emotionally, a few weeks ago, a dear friend of ours was in a car wreck with his teenage son.  They were sent into a spin, and hit a tree on his son’s side of the vehicle. Our friend walked away with a few stitches and bruises, and for the first few days, his son’s condition, although very, very critical, seemed to be stable.  Then he suffered a massive stroke, and the tragic turn continued from there.  My friends had to do the unthinkable and let their son leave this world. Losing someone you love is an indescribable pain, but the grief they must have felt in having to bury their child  – well, I don’t think there are any words for that.

These tragic accidents have put a fear in me.  A fear that freezes your feet in place and makes you long to lock your loved ones within your home’s four walls, so that nothing bad can ever touch them.  I haven’t suffered panic attacks in almost a decade, but there have been multiple times in the past few months where I’ve felt the dreaded tightening in my chest, shakiness in my hands, clenching in my lungs start to occur again.  I’ve shed more tears in 2011 than I have in my entire life.  And yet, with all this emotional outpouring, I still feel as if I’m outside that window…removed.

 
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Posted by on June 25, 2011 in Uncategorized

 

The School of Essential Ingredients: Erica Bauermeister

The School of Essential Ingredients by Erica Bauermeister
Published:  01-05-10
272 pages
Purchased for $1.00 at our local Borders’ closing sale
5/5 stars

 

 

 

I’ve had this book on my To Be Read list since it was first published, but I just finally got around to reading it last week.  I admit that when I stumbled across it at our local Borders’ closing sale (I happened to hit the sale – for the third time – two days before they shut their doors, and everything was priced at $1.00), I was that bookish nerd that let out a little squeal and danced a happy little jig in the middle of the store. Yup, that was me.  Ain’t no shame in my game.

Once I had the book in my hands, I then let it sit in my TBR pile for at least another month. What in the heck was I thinking??? Once I started reading this little gem of a novel (and who doesn’t adore that cover?), I read it before bed. I read it while I bathed. I read it walking into work, on the elevator, on the escalator. I read it at stoplights.  And even more telling, when I wasn’t reading it, I couldn’t quit thinking of it.

It’s fairly obvious what the story is about simply by the title, so I won’t go into a detailed plot summary.  As a fan of food writing, be it fiction or non-fiction, I knew I would probably enjoy SOEI.  I just didn’t realize how I would end up emailing quotes to friends and family because the stories of these characters touched me so very deeply.  How I would immediately pass it on to a fellow booklover, just so we could discuss it as soon as possible.  How I would scavenge the internet for reviews so I could see if it had the same effect on other readers.  (And yes, based upon what I found, it appeared that I wasn’t the only one who adored it.)

Take, for example, this particular passage:

“I used to know a sculptor,” Isabella said, nodding.  “He always said that if you looked hard enough, you could see where each person carried his soul in his body.  It sounds crazy, but when you saw his sculptures, it made sense.  I think the same is true with those we love,” she explained.  “Our bodies carry our memories of them, in our muscles, in our skin, in our bones.  My children are right here.”  She pointed to the inside curve of her elbow.  “Where I held them when they were babies.  Even if there comes a time when I don’t know who they are anymore, I believe I will feel them here.”
 
That quote alone is destined to become one of my all time favorites.  It’s probably a good thing that I’ve already loaned the book out, or I would sit here and post quote after quote after quote after quote- till you really felt no need to read the book at all.  But since I don’t, and I can’t, I highly recommend that you run out and obtain a copy to read.  It’s a “don’t miss this!” kind of debut novel. 
 
Side note: The only perk of having waited so long to read it is that Erica Bauermeister has a new book coming out in June.  Less of a wait now;)
 
 

Legalities

Working in the legal field means that you often have no idea how your day/week is going to go.  It could be slow, and lots of your time is spent doing administrative type tasks so that you aren’t drowning in mountains in paper.  Other times, deadlines bury you (along with the aforementioned mountains of paper.)  And to be honest, I’ve yet to decide whether I prefer to know a hellish week is ahead of me, or if I’d rather be surprised and forced to just go with it.  Last week….I knew to expect chaos…and had known for some time.  Despite my best attempts to be prepared as best I could, everything I touched seem to go wrong in some small way.  I rarely talk about my work on here, preferring to leave work exactly that…work. I like having a job that (the majority of the time) I can show up at 8, leave at 5, and come home to the things that matter most to me.  But I thought in this particular instance, the visual was too good to resist.  [Bear in mind this is only half of the project I had due Friday.]

I’m lucky to not only have a job I love, and the best bosses and coworkers ever, but honestly…I’m super grateful to simply HAVE a job.  It’s been 10 months since my husband was laid off, so every day that my alarm goes off (and I silently curse it for interrupting my John Mayer/Jason Aldean/Colin Firth dream), I’m still darn glad that I have a reason to get out of bed.

So today, although I sat bolt upright at 4:30 a.m., I’m posting this to remind myself of small blessings.  I’m certain I won’t feel this way at 4:30 p.m., and I’ll need this reminder:)

 
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Posted by on February 28, 2011 in Uncategorized