Tell Me Three Things

17 Jun

I just read the YA romance Tell Me Three Things by Julie Buxbaum and so you’ve caught me at a vulnerable time. I am deeply in love with these characters, with this story, with Love In General.

Love is a many splendored thing!

Love lifts us up where we belong!

All you need is love!

(Fine, I won’t start that again.)

In the story, Jessie and SN (Somebody Nobody) text all day every day. Except, TWIST, Jessie doesn’t know who SN is! They fall for each other, of course. Through sharing their souls in little bite-sized chunks.

Jessie and SN often begin the day saying, “Tell me three things.”

They share tidbits and thoughts and all that nothing means more than so many somethings, as Kathleen would say.

All that nothing inspired me to share some of my own.

Maybe it will be a series?

Who knows, I’m not thinking clearly!!

 

Three Things Today

1. I like the bad animal crackers.

You know the ones.

They taste almost neutral. Like eating sawdust. A snack to fill you up but not let you down.

This feels significant to me, somehow. That I want the bad stuff.

I bought the normal branded animal crackers recently, forgetting that they are ever-so-slightly sweet. That they have a taste. I’m not interested in that.

I want my animal crackers like I want my Amazon packages.

Made of cardboard.

 

2. I have created the world’s most perfect Coldstone order.

In my list of life accomplishments this has to go somewhere near the top.

Jillian Denning. Good at book recommendations, birthday presents, banana bread and Coldstone combinations.

(It’s too bad Coldstone combinations doesn’t start with a B.)

 

The Jillian Denning

½ Sweet cream ½ cake batter ice cream

Cinnamon

Pecans

Kit Kat

 

3. My hair is a shaggy mess.

Shaggy seems the only word for it. The ends are frayed, the top is heavy, and there’s this slight fuzz to it all that never quite goes away.

Sometimes I wonder how I got married in August, during a hurricane on Cape Cod and my hair looked fly as pie and now, in my everyday life I wonder if I’ll ever like it again.

Hair, if you are reading this, I’m just joking. Please do not give up on me now!

I have an appointment with Alberto tomorrow and I’m just hanging on until then. Crown braids, high ponytails.

The price of only getting your hair cut two states away from where you live.

The price of picky.

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Have A Great Summer

15 Jun

The other day I was sitting with a group of friends talking about the summer.

When you work in a school, The Summer takes on a life of its own.

What are you doing This Summer?

Any plans for Summer?

I’ve answered this question a dozen times over now. I’ve asked it even more. We are all the problem. We are The Summer.

This summer I am

Seeing my family in Utah

Attending the American Library Association’s annual conference in Washington DC

Going to Cape Cod

Teaching a Quidditch camp

whataboutyou?

When my friends asked about summer plans, I recited my four events much like you recite your college major, anticipating the follow-up questions.

Sonia Sotomayor (is speaking at ALA)

My husband’s family has a home there (on Cape Cod)

You have a student wear a yellow flag football belt (to be the Snitch)

“But what are you looking forward to?” someone asked.

“Oh, I have a long to-do list.”

I started rattling off my bullet journal.

  • weird car noise to address
  • art to frame
  • items to post on Craigslist
  • storage closet to clean

“You know, really getting things done.”

The group looked at me.

“But what are you looking forward to?”

I went silent.

I have this thing.

I don’t know what to call it.

But basically, I don’t count myself as a human in this world unless I’m being productive.

I guess I should call it a curse.

Last summer I made this exhaustive list of every errand I needed to accomplish. On there was renew my passport. I wasn’t going anywhere, but my passport was expiring. This was the time to get it done!

At the end of the summer I looked at my list in shame.

My passport remained outdated.

How had I wasted all of my time?!

Of course, there were other things not on the list that I had accomplished.

Things like walks with my grandma and cuddles with a newborn baby. Fresh strawberry jam on my mom’s homemade bread.

The things that never make it to the list because the list only contains horrible things I hate doing and only 20% need to be done.

(But if they aren’t on the list, do they even count?)

What are you looking forward to this summer?”

I’ve been thinking about it a lot.

Not Large Activities I Am Doing.

Not My Enormous, Oppressive To-Do List.

But things I’d like to do, just because. Things that nourish my soul.

Things like thrifting with my sister and trying my hand at cinnamon bread. Turning off my phone for large stretches of time. Hiking and smelling the honeysuckle and I don’t know.

Things I haven’t even thought of yet.

Things that are going to surprise me with their beauty.

If I let them.

If I can let go of the horrible productivity monster inside of me.

Did you know that kids still use the phrase HAGS?

It’s in yearbooks and everything.

Have a great summer! You’re the best!

HAGS!

Note it’s not: have a productive summer

HAPS!

It’s not have a great time getting your passport renewed

It’s have a great summer.

HAGS, baby

HAGS

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Terry Tempest Williams

9 Jun

Reading Terry Tempest Williams felt so intimate it was almost like hearing an echo. There I was, there were generations of Mormon women, with our voices combining and splitting, yearning and striving.

I felt heard and understood, seen and embraced.

I wonder what it would be like to read Terry’s words and not be a Mormon woman.

A Mormon feminist woman who grew up in Utah.

She speaks of places I know, people I’ve never met who are familiar all the same.

There is a part in Refuge where she is given a ride back to Salt Lake from strangers. She notes that if she had asked enough questions they would have likely been related several generations back, “the dark side of residency” in Utah.

She and I, with enough questions, might find we are related.

I don’t need to ask them, though.

Refuge is a memoir. A story of grief and death. Terry speaks of her mother’s cancer, the slow decline, holding her mother’s hand, acting as her midwife as she passed on.

Refuge is an environmental treatise. Terry speaks of the Utah landscape, of the Great Salt Lake.

Chapters begin with the Great Salt Lake’s water level. Terry spends pages, chapters on birds, at times the text becoming a scientific journal, one I don’t fully grasp.

When I saw her in person, just days after reading this she said, “My dad can tell you, I had every indication of being normal until I started watching birds.”

I’ve always been a little hesitant to use the phrase “hand of God in my life.”

It’s something we like to say at church, instances where something bigger than ourselves shows up. Grace, perhaps.

I can rarely pinpoint these moments in my life when they’re happening, but this week, after seeing Terry Tempest Williams in person I felt it.

Me reading her words just a week before she was to be in Los Angeles and I could see her. Surely that was the hand of something.

Me sharing that experience with a girl who I feel firmly was brought to me by something bigger than myself, well, that was a hand waving in my face.

Hello!

Hello!

I took a lot of notes at Terry’s talk. It’s hard to describe the energy in the room. You could hear others breathing around you. We were eager to take her in.

Terry is thoughtful and kind. I appreciate that so much.

There was so much talk of her being Mormon!

Terry is no longer a practicing Mormon.

I take issue with that very black and white definition, though.

The book is overflowing with Mormonism. She speaks of it with respect and nuance, recalling a spiritual experience as angels in the room. She speaks of its origins and liking to be connected to something magical and mystical.

She prays over her mother’s sick body.

She carries a few verses of Mormon scripture, Doctrine and Covenants 88:45-47, with her at all times.

45 The earth rolls upon her wings, and the sun giveth his light by day, and the moon giveth her light by night, and the stars also give their light, as they roll upon their wings in their glory, in the midst of the power of God.

46 Unto what shall I liken these kingdoms, that ye may understand?

47 Behold, all these are kingdoms, and any man who hath seen any or the least of these hath seen God moving in his majesty and power.

Practicing is a subjective term, isn’t it?

After Terry’s talk, my friend and I stood in line to get our books signed. We were missing another event, but it seemed vital, pressing that we stay. That we see her.

Terry joined the crowd on  her time, smiling and friendly. We introduced ourselves.

We are Mormon.

We met through the visiting teaching program.

She spoke about her love of fast and testimony meetings, of hearing each other’s stories and bearing witness to each other.

She gave us a hug and said, “We share so much.”

Hello!

Hello!

We share so much.

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Diana The Musical

16 Apr

The Princess Diana musical starts with a girl in a replica of Diana’s iconic wedding dress. The veil is pulled over her face, her hands hold a plastic bouquet.

Real Diana enters the stage in an orange skirt suit. “You know what I was thinking right here, at this moment? Before I agreed to all ‘this’ — perhaps I should’ve dated him more than 13 times.”

The crowd roars.

Thus begins Diana: a new musical.

Diana is a delight.

Diana the human being, of course, the woman who took to the stage at the Royal Ballet to dance to Uptown Girl for Charles’s birthday.

But Diana the musical as well.

It is big and loud and electric. I felt like I went to a concert, one where the rock stars were bitingly funny, clothed in couture, and occasionally wore tiaras.

I laughed out loud, in that sort of way when you’re not expecting it and can’t hold it in. I fell for the music, I fell for Diana.

Jeanna de Waal captured Diana so well. The young, bright-eyed kindergarten teacher who barely knew Charles when she said yes. The romantic who loved happy endings.

The sad married woman, the mother, the woman who regained her power, who used the press as a weapon, who confronted Camilla at a party.

That was a particularly fun scene. Diana strutting in. Pulling Camilla aside.

The two powerhouses singing back and forth. It was set up like a boxing match, with spectators on the side, as both women duked it out. Both women wanting the same man, but loving him for different reasons.

Diana didn’t want a divorce.

That’s perhaps the tragedy in it all.

She just wanted her husband to love her. She had the adoration of the world, but not the adoration of her spouse. Her parents had divorced when she was young and she didn’t want that for her kids.

But what to do when the man you married never really loved you?

One of the great opening songs is called

Whatever love means anyway

During their engagement, when asked if they were in love Diana answered “of course,” while Charles said, “Whatever in love means.”

That line was turned into a song. The beginning of the end.

The beginning of the beginning.

Charles, Diana and Camilla are all players in this Greek tragedy. Charles kept from the woman he loves. Diana unable to gain his affection. Camilla living a life on the fringes. It wasn’t fair to anyone.

And Diana, the lively, bright, loving, emotional Diana was left behind.

Of course, Diana’s story is what she made of it.

Traditionally, she would be a side note, an afterthought. Camilla and Charles are the star crossed lovers here, kept apart by tradition, by a country, by a monarchy! I’ve read this story many times. We’ve all read this story.

And the poor fool who marries the person already in love with someone else is always a minor character in this plot. We don’t know how they turn out. We only care about our lovers.

Diana flipped this narrative on the head.

She wasn’t just a girl stuck in the middle, she was a girl with her own story to live. And so, through her heart and grace and charm and vivacity we all cared more about her story than that of the protagonist.

She emerged triumphant while Charles and Camilla quietly ended up together, no longer the stars of their own show.

The musical is framed in “once upon a time.” For that’s what this was seen as– a modern fairytale, Diana a modern princess!

And then there’s the reality. At one point Diana sings, “I need a prince to save me from my prince.”

The ending was my only qualm with the musical.

Well, I also wish we had seen the infamous interview with Martin Bashir. I’d have loved to have a song around “There were three in this marriage, so it was a bit crowded” or even her “Queen of hearts line.”

But other than that, the ending was my only qualm.

It’s all rather abrupt. She dies. The chorus sings a few lines.

Diana returns, triumphant, in her white beaded gown and tiara, a Gandalf the White, gone through the fires and returned stronger than ever to bow to the crowd.

Show ends.

I wanted…

I wanted more.

I bought every piece of merchandise the show offered.

I tried to start normal. An ornament, a magnet. Fine, OK, a tote bag. But I use tote bags!

Not thirty seconds after leaving the stand, I realized I would regret it forever if I didn’t have the mug, the stationery.

I wanted the CD but it doesn’t exist yet.

I have to believe that it will soon. That this show will make its way to bigger stages, to a worldwide audience. How could it not?

With music by a founding member of Bon Jovi. With costumes by a man who owns over 100 books on Diana’s looks.

With differing musical styles for differing characters. With inside jokes only royal aficionados will get, but an overarching tragedy, one that is instantly recognizable and felt by all.

Yes, Diana is a true delight.

Diana the human, of course, but Diana the musical as well.

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The True Story of Lavinia The Lemon Cake

6 Apr

I was born August 15, 2017, but I didn’t become a celebrity for an entire 24 hours.

A wedding cake on a plane is thing to behold, but I like to think it was me, my personality, that rocketed me to stardom.

I was made for the spotlight.

People stopped and stared right away.

A cake destined for a 2,500 mile journey? I must be something special.

Yes, I assured them. I am.

The logistics were simple, but don’t tell that to my carriers. I shall call them M and A, for they deserve at least an initial in this tale.

M picked me up from my bakery and threw away half of her freezer to store me. This is what we call in nature survival of the fittest. And I, of course, was the fittest.

She met up with A at the Salt Lake City airport and together they each took a layer of me through security, through lines, through my introduction to the world.

The attention was immediate.

“A wedding cake” the TSA agent said. “Send it through the x-rays.”

“A wedding cake?” a woman cried, “I was stressed taking my dress to a destination wedding. I can’t imagine taking a cake!”

Yes, thank you. I am very special and important.

People stared and took pictures with me.

They asked if M and A were going to eat me.

I was kind and generous with my time and my fame, as I am.

M and A seemed stressed.

A had the heavier layer. She kept saying “I have no upper body strength whatsoever!” This was true.

I worried she would be the weak link. I worried she would drop me before we even got to the gate.

I overheard them making vows that if something were to go terribly wrong they would replace me and never tell my bride about it.

This was silly.

You can’t replace me.

There was a layover and more lugging, the descent into Boston and more luggage. A few more carriers joined the journey, one so bold as to take me in a single arm.

M and A complained of fatigue.

Being celebrity adjacent can be exhausting.

I was placed in a temperature-controlled rental car and left with the air conditioning on while my carriers made a stop at Walgreens.

I sat on laps as they drove over bridges into quieter towns, as the landscape turned from city to suburb, suburb to Cape.

Eventually I was delivered to my bride, an intense woman with intense feelings.

She knew of my importance, of how it could only be me, for she had commissioned my existence. She had said only this chef, only this cake and even though that bakery and that cake were across the country from where she was to be wed, she stood steadfast.

She cashed in on years of friendship with my carriers.

She had her mother make a buttercream frosting to top me, had her cousin light candles to finish me.

And when the entire crowd gathered round me and sang —

Happy wedding day to you

Happy wedding day to you

Happy wedding day Jill and Rob

–right before she blew out the candles, holding hands with her groom, she gave me a smile.

She knew how important I was.

I was born August 15, 2017, but I didn’t become a celebrity for an entire 24 hours.

My name is Lavinia the Lemon Cake and this is my story.

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Nora Ephron’s Hot Dog

2 Apr

Hilary visited this weekend.

She told me her stomach hurt all morning and then she realized it was excitement. She was going to see Jill!

I told her I didn’t sleep well the night before and I realized it was excitement. I was going to see Hil!

We tried Nora Ephron’s hot dog which is really just a Nate ‘n Al’s hot dog forever immortalized by Nora.

She said that it was her final meal, the meal she would choose above all else. With it, she issued a warning

When you are actually going to have your last meal, you’ll either be too sick to have it or you aren’t gonna know it’s your last meal and you could squander it on something like a tuna melt and that would be ironic. So it’s important … I feel it’s important to have that last meal today, tomorrow, soon.

We tried Nora Ephron’s hot dog.

The deli itself is straight out of a time warp. Taupe seats. Jello cubes jiggling in a fridge. We ordered the hot dog with pastrami and relish, sauerkraut and mustard.

I burned my tongue.

I’ve been lonely lately.

LA is a lonely place.

People move here from all over, filled with big dreams, and then they leave. Either when the dreams don’t work or they realize they were chasing the wrong thing all along.

LA is transient, and I’ve been here almost seven years. In that time there have been periods where I haven’t even thought about loneliness, where the word felt foreign on my tongue. There have also been periods where it’s felt all-consuming, where the word is tattooed on my brain.

Lonely, lonely, lonely.

We drove to the flower fields on Tuesday, the car thick with Kacey Musgraves.

I read her Tom Hiddleston’s profile in GQ and we talked about Getaway Car and if the journalist was in love with him, and what a celebrity profile!

Has there even been another celebrity profile?

We talked about Meghan Markle and Prince Harry and the intricacies of the British royal family.

I read an article about mediocrity and we parsed through the things that we do for pleasure, for fun.

We stopped well out of our way for sugary drinks. We sang Celine Dion.

And we got to the flower fields, something to behold.

I wished I was Mary Oliver so I could describe it perfectly, to tie it back to God and mysteries and maybe even have the flowers talk to me, but instead I am me and this is my description:

The flower fields were healing. The flower fields were beauty.

We walked around them. We took pictures. Hundreds of pictures with lots of laughter.

Hilary attempted a backbend. She danced with the flowers.

There was a moment where I looked around at the crowds waiting in line to take a picture on the posed benches and I said “We are having more fun than anyone else here.”

I’ve tried various things for my loneliness. I have spearheaded social events. I’ve hung out with all sorts of people, some far outside my comfort zone. I have set goals and met goals, but the truth of the matter is, you can’t set a goal about getting a stomach ache when you see someone.

You can’t try hard enough and then end up with a bosom friend.

Those friends are rare, forged in the fires of time and secrets.

I joke that if you don’t know about the intricacies my trauma, and how my trauma has been passed down to me, what are we doing here?

I joke, but I’m not joking.

Hilary visited this weekend.

We tried Nora Ephron’s hot dog.

We tried to make her proud.

I am

full

full

full.

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The 10 People You Meet On An LA Hike

2 Apr

Hiking is the city activity of Los Angeles. If you go on a weekend you’re going to be stuck in traffic, mobbed with people, the joy of being outdoors robbed by the pain of being in a loud, public forum.

We made this mistake last weekend, hiking just after brunch, and while I was overwhelmed by the sheer amount of noise on our hiking trail, I was also taking notes.

Notes I present to you now.

The 10 people you meet on an LA hike

1. The Influencer

Dressed in Outdoor Voices, speaking to their followers. This hike is their photoshoot and the rest of us are just living in it.

2. The Very Casual

Plastic Starbucks cup in hand, jeans on. They are not prepared! Should we be worried?

3. The Very Prepared

You know the fancy backpack of water that I speak of. Maybe some sort of walking stick?

4. The Family

They are regretting attempting this and so is everyone else around them.

5. The Couple On A Date

It’s usually early days and I wonder if this ever works out for them? Hiking is always very emotional for me but, then again, I’m only in moderate shape?

6. The Guy With Speakers Instead Of Headphones

Very presumptuous, forcing the rest of us to listen to your choice of music on full blast, buster.

7. The Runner

Are they barefoot? Are those just very thin sandal running shoes?

8. The Mountain Biker

Listen, it explicitly says no biking here, but that’s not what this is about. How did you pedal your bike up this cliff? The terrain won’t allow for it! I can barely walk!

9. The Dog Owners

Holding their frou-frou dogs or guiding their wolf dogs or apologizing to you that their excited dog has developed a liking for your shins.

10. The Writer

Taking it in, taking notes, going home to blog about it.

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The Suit

17 Mar

We joke about Rob’s suit now. About his bright blue, perfectly tailored, SNAPPY wedding suit.

When we’re going somewhere he needs to be dressed up we say, “Should you wear your suit?” and then we laugh. Becuase it’s A Suit.

In the best way, it’s A Suit.

If we had been married in the winter, or not on the beach, his suit would have been maroon. Rob is the sort of person who can pull off a maroon suit, a maroon WEDDING suit, nonetheless. That’s one of the reasons I married him. Who can even say that?

Who is he?

What a journey I’m on to find out!

Rob’s suit became A Suit because he is someone who can’t just buy clothes at the store. He falls in between sizes or nothing fits or or or.

After some rough gos with suits that were way off and colors he wasn’t satisfied with, we took a trip to Indochino.

A custom suit store.

Indochino sponsors Pod Save America, one of Rob’s favorite podcasts. The cohost, Jon Favreau, outfitted his whole crew in Indochino suits for his wedding and he was Obama’s speechwriter! He dated Rashida Jones!

(He didn’t marry Rashida Jones.)

Indochino is located in Beverly Hills, like HI RODEO DRIVE Beverly Hills. Parking is bad. You have to have an appointment, just always, don’t try to show up.

We learned from experience.

But goodness, the product is goodness.

Goodness.

Three fittings it took. Three fittings and a frantic poll about which suit color to choose.

Would you like to see those options?

Here we are.

Let’s call them:

     SUIT ONE

IMG_6737

      SUIT TWO

  IMG_6739

   SUIT THREE

  IMG_6738

Rob went with Suit Two. He went with it because our two most fashionable friends both chose it. He went with it after choosing Suit Three originally and having to back out last minute. (You get 24 hours to back out! He used it!)

Suit One was fun. But would Suit One have been too much?

We’ll never know.

We don’t need to know.

Because he got his Suit. A Suit. The Suit.

The suit that’s too snappy to wear to semi-formal occasions. The suit to end all suits.

In the best way, and forever more, Rob will have A Suit.

PS: A wedding toast, the dress, the invitations

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The Invitations

14 Mar

I have had it in my mind for a year and a half that I would do some sort of wedding month on this blog. That I’d write it all out so I’d have my words, so my future children would have my words. That I’d pace it and plan it and make it something special. And now, all this time later, I’m sitting on a few very disjointed posts in no particular order.  I’ve decided it’s better to post them as they come than to never post them at all.

So.

Here we are. 

Welcome back to August 2017.

 

I got the idea for our wedding invitations from a blog I follow.

Well, I guess the word now is “followed.”

I just went to link to it and the blog has gone private. Invited readers only.

The end of an era.

I’m sad about the end of blogging. I miss the days of long, rambly diary posts. Of knowing what a girl across the country was having for dinner, just because. Because she felt like a friend.

Tonight I had blackened chicken with mango salsa and coconut lime rice.

It sounds nice, right?

It was.

I hereby promise to share my dinner with you as often as possible!

But first, my wedding invitations.

(I am no good at this blogging thing. If I were I’d cut the whole beginning and just give you the basics of the wedding invites. Then, I’d link to it on Pinterest hoping that I become the GO TO for postcard wedding invitation Google Searches.

But here we are.

And here is coconut lime rice.

I like the coconut lime rice.

I like the old blogging.)

I got the idea for our wedding invitations from a blog I used to follow.

I loved the postcard, especially a postcard from Cape Cod. I loved the idea of using photobooth photos for me, and for Rob, who does not like to have his picture taken.

It was supposed to have a feeling to it. Like hi! Welcome to vacation! Come on vacation with us! It’s casual! And fun! And bright yellow with sailboats! It’s a dream!

We’re a dream!

We got our invitations from Zazzle which was nice. (I changed the border color and went with the shiny finish.)

We got the stamp from Design Roots. It was custom and she was lovely and wonderful to work with.

We got our photo booth pictures at The Backstage Bar and Grill after eating enormous hamburgers. Maybe we should have done it before we ate enormous hamburgers?

Alas.

I wore lipstick.

Oh! JFK stamps, because of the Cape Cod connection, and also it was a very politically charged time. I often said trying to plan a wedding in 2017 was like Bill and Fleur trying to find joy in their love while Voldemort rose.

I think that’s it. They were crazy cheap and crazy easy and I have no regrets.

It was a dream. We were a dream.

It all came true.

 

PS: About my wedding dress

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What’s New?

12 Mar

Every once in a while, my writing group and I do a group text catch up.

“What’s new?” someone asks and then we all launch in with the details.

Like how I almost exclusively wear medical clogs now. And that I’m way too devoted to this season’s Lakers and it would be just like me to get involved in a sports team for the first time in my life only to have them be the most disappointing sports team in recent memory.

Like how Dolly is sitting on my lap as I type this and it hurts my neck to write sideways, but that’s what we do for love.

It seems time for a What’s New blog post, doesn’t it?

I almost exclusively wear medical clogs now.

I guess I’ll start there.

I saw a cool looking hostess at a cool looking Venice brunch place walking around all confident in them and I went home and ordered them. They are expensive. They are heavy! Watch out!

I am trying to do better at not just seeing a cool looking thing and ordering it.

It’s going well, despite what the clogs imply!

Would you like to see my current Amazon wishlist?

The one I have so I sit with a purchase for a week and make sure I actually want it?

Here you go.

 

Matilda Tote Bag

Vintage looking clock

Lavender soap

Devotions: The selected poems of Mary Oliver

Clear bubble umbrella

Stylus pen

West coast coasters

The Body Keeps the score: Brain, Mind and Body in the healing of trauma

Kate Somerville exfolikate intensive exfoliating treatment

 

I’ve been keeping my phone in the other room at night.

What a revelation!

People have been saying this for a long time, I’m doing nothing new here, but let me tell you that it actually works. My screen time is down. I don’t wake up in the middle of the night and immediately check my phone. First thing in the morning I pet Dolly and read a few words of a book.

Yes, it’s going well.

Except.

have zero idea what time it is.

Saturday I woke up at 6:00AM and got out of bed with my blankets and books. Hours later I discovered my mistake.

There was some grouchiness.

I need an alarm clock is the point.

That vintage looking one looks nice.

(But I have a purple lamp! So is a purple clock too much or just enough?)

About the Lakers.

I keep thinking I’m going to write a long blog post about them. Something inspired and perhaps picked up by national media outlets, but then of course that sort of pressure means I never write about them at all so I’m starting here with this.

I do not know why people watch sports.

Well, I know why men watch sports. So they have something to talk about socially with other men and can avoid emotional intimacy. But other than that, why are we watching sports??

Sports are horrible!

I have enough going on emotionally, I don’t need to add invented drama!

I am the queen of invented drama!

This year I have devoted countless hours to the Lakers. I have watched most of their games. I have listened to a variety of podcasts about them, and then once you get into it, you have to start listening about their rivals.

I have searched Twitter for conspiracy theories and become interested in conspiracy theories. I’m so deep in, like so so deep.

And there is no reward.

Zero.

Before this point, the most I had paid attention to a sports team as an adult was The Patriots, sort of.

The Patriots always win! This is a good team to cheer on! (Other than the moral qualms, but I’m not going there right now.)

The Patriots win and so you get like an hour of happiness and I don’t know, if that’s all you have in your life maybe that hour makes a big difference.

But the Lakers never win. They keep finding new levels of disappointment and sadness.

Why are we cheering them on?

What’s the point again?

I went and made us a casserole last week.

A full-on Midwest style Chrissy Tiegen casserole with cream of mushroom and noodles and frozen peas, the whole bit. Topped with jalapeno potato chips, of course.

Rob had never had a casserole before, not a true one.

It made our week.

I mean, of course, there were other things going on. Dolly being adorable. Work and church and friends and family, but there, in that 9×13 pan that fed us for three meals, therein was the joy.

Rob never having had a casserole is shocking to anyone I tell.

I am from Utah. Casseroles are in our blood.

I took a “Foods” class in high school where one of the units was exclusively on casserole making.

It’s so easy! You need a rice/pasta, some sort of cream soup, a meat, a topping. Cheese. More cheese than you can even imagine.

What’s not to love?

Before I made the casserole, I started spreading it around. “I’m making a casserole tonight,” I told the friend I saw right before. “I have been craving a casserole!” she said.

She, too, is from Utah.

Before I made the casserole, Rob mentioned it to his grandma. “Jill’s making a casserole tonight,” he said.

“Be kind to her” she said.

She, too, is from the Northeast.

There are many reasons Rob has never had a casserole.

He is from the Northeast, as mentioned.

He is Italian. People have tried to argue lasagna is a casserole, but it’s just not a Casserole Casserole, is it? Where are the potato chips?

Also. Rob is an only child.

Casseroles are made for the large family. You throw it all in one dish, whatever you have left, whatever you have around, and it feeds everyone!

For cheap!

I went and made us a casserole last week.

(It was good.)

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