What day is it again?

I can’t keep track of the days. “Black Friday” starts earlier each year, gearing up with sales on Wednesday or even Monday prior to Thanksgiving Day here in the United States.  I didn’t have time to shop since I had meetings and work to do on Monday, then work again on Tuesday and Wednesday. I did get to stay home Wednesday morning to do a little meal preparation; pies were baked on Wednesday night. Thursday our holiday guests arrived and we were firmly at home.

DSCN3537 and a quiet old lady whispering HUSH.

“And a quiet old lady whispering ‘Hush.’

I had thought we’d be standing in line at the big craft and fabric store early Friday morning — and for my beloved daughter-in-law and 70% off fleece and flannel, I would do such a crazy thing — but thankfully that was not on the ultimate agenda. Instead, we slept in, relaxed and then began “Small Business Saturday” one day early by shopping for a new-to-her Pfaff sewing machine in an older shopping neighborhood.  The rest of the day we spent resting, eating leftovers (hello, we had 7 pies plus a cranberry-rhubarb-apple crisp and a fruitcake from Costco), playing card games, and of course spending time with Little Foot. Goodnight Moon has been read countless times over the past few days to my delight.

DSCN3206 Small Business Saturday, starting it out right

Starting the day out right

We’ll enjoy “Small Business Saturday” at a slow pace, with fair trade coffee grown by small farmers, brewed at home and served in glazed ceramic cups from Gary Rith Pottery.  I might make a trip to one of two local shopping neighborhoods.  The little family will pack up and head home, and once the toys and high chair are put away, laundry started, and some general decluttering done, it will be time to contemplate decorating and Christmas gifts. After all, “Cyber Monday” and #GivingTuesday are coming up next, and Christmas is [less than] a month away.

 

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MTM: Soggy

Rain has been a near-constant companion for the past week, helping to thaw two months worth of icy, dirty accumulations of snow.

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It’s not pretty — and not just because it is a cheap cell phone picture.

All that rain is also raising the level of the river, which has been running three times above normal at 16,000 ft. per second. I’d share a picture but this weather has also affected my ankle; the hardware (or maybe it’s arthritis?) does not let me get out-and-about easily when it is damp and cold.

We’re down to 8 inches of soggy snow in the front yard, although it’s much higher wherever the shovelfuls landed or the snowblower blew it. The dirty snow at the edges of the street is ugly, but it’s nowhere near the danger level of the many potholes that have become evident now that the streets are no longer covered with several inches of compact snow and ice. Commuting to and from my exercise class (and yes, I know that is a silly thing: driving in order to workout elsewhere) I’m one of many drivers zig-zagging in and out of the lanes to avoid becoming a pothole victim.

Days like this are good reminders to “unplug” so I went to the public library after church and returned home with a stack of books.

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The two items on top are DVDs about Ellis Island: one is an overview from the History Channel and the other is a PBS documentary about the hospital on Ellis Island. Three out of the five books are stories of immigrants. I may be unplugging for a bit, but I am not ignoring what is happening all around us.

With thoughts of love

DSCN4736  Reflection, CROPPED to 4x6 and resized for web

If someone loves you for what you can do then it’s flattering, but why do you love them? If someone loves you for who you are then they have to know you, which means you have to know them.

— from Bel Canto by Ann Patchett

 

To love someone means to see him as God intended him.
— Fyodor Dostoyevsky

If you love a flower, don’t pick it up. Because if you pick it up, it dies and it ceases to be what you love. So if you love a flower, let it be. Love is not about possession. Love is about appreciation.
–Osho

Wildfires and World Con

Looking up at the sun through smoky skies, August 2015

Looking up at the sun through smoky skies, August 2015

  • This week we are continuing to be all about wildfires and smoky skies because the Pacific Northwest continues to burn.
  • I need some good book recommendations — nothing graphic, no horror. I am particularly fond of historical fiction and memoirs but I do not limit myself to those genres. What suggestions do you have?
  • The lovebirds and a couple of the mother hen’s friends have been visiting for World Con. Our breakfast table is filled with 6 young adults getting their geek on in the best way possible.  I can’t say I understand their language but I do enjoy seeing them happy and communicating with one another.
  • However, that doesn’t explain why my 19yo and 22yo have been watching the one hour long YouTube video of nursery rhymes that has over 800,000 million hits in the past year.
  • This is a scheduled post because I’m hiding out overnight at the lake, where book group was expanded to include an option for a sleepover. I will be back in town for the afternoon farmers’ market; hopefully we won’t have to shut down early again due to dust storms, poor air quality (smoke and dust) and closed roads. I am blessed that my husband seems to understand my need for getaways, even though I’ll miss seeing the cosplay and hearing about the latest happenings at World Con.

What’s going on in your neck of the woods? 

Kicks Like a Girl — review and giveaway!

Over the weekend (besides church, family time, and a craft show) I was privileged to read Melissa Westemeier’s new book, Kicks Like a Girl. You might know the author from her blog, Green Girl in Wisconsin. (If you don’t already read her blog, you should consider heading over there!)  It was a treat to curl up on the sofa with an ice pack on my arm, a blanket on my legs, and ignore winter for hours at a time.

Gretchen is a strong young woman who runs her own business, but while she has confidence in her abilities at work, recent setbacks — being dumped by a long-term boyfriend and having her business broken into and vandalized — have made her feel vulnerable. This story brings the reader along on Gretchen’s quest to become stronger in more than just self-defense, while romance and humor sweeten the kicks and punches.
Filled with believable characters, this book is a fun read that will make you feel like you are one of Gretchen’s own friends. You might even find you have an interest in karate!

I purchased my book (no Kindle here in my possession) directly from Melissa, because I wanted my own signed copy and because I wanted to be able to give a signed copy to one lucky reader.  I will draw a winner at random on Friday.

To win a copy of this book for yourself, please leave a comment telling me about your favorite genre and/or giving me a book recommendation for something you’ve recently read.

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Meredith is the WINNER of the drawing! (My 18yo was the unwitting random number generator.) Congratulations! I’ll be contacting you for your mailing address.