Friday, November 30, 2012

Stacks of Love

I got some books out of the library today.

When I get a new stack of books out of the library, I feel compelled to take a photo of said stack, and share it with my reading friends.

I really really love to read the books, and I'm surrounded by peeps who love to read the books too.

My mom and my sisters and my friends and my cousins and my acquaintances share book titles back and forth, to and fro, hither and yon, and have the equivalent of a secret handshake when we greet eachother: instead of the old-fashioned-low-five, we ask, "What are you reading?"

My mom has been in a book club for years and loves it. She and her co-readers take turns hosting at their respective homes, eat yummy snacks and drink delish wine, and coolest of all, several of the members are mother-daughter combos.

Unfortunately for Mom -- and for us -- none of her daughters are in the group.

Sigh, I know. I can't figure out why we all live so far away from eachother either.

My oldest sister was in a book group for a long time, too. I tried it once, but it was a sober book group, and boring as dirt. It's not just my propensities, people: wine helps conversation flow. The conversation? It did not flow.

Plus, talking books can be like talking politics or religion, I've found. When one feels strongly about a book, one simply cannot believe some numbskull would be so dense and so misinformed and so unenlightened, that she or he could possibly have the audacity to feel differently than one does.

My two co-bloggers and I had ourselves a casual book club during the years Mistah and I were on the road and spent months at a time in San Diego. And no, it was not just an excuse to eat sushi and drink beer. Jacquie, Beth and I talked books. Now that's a book club I can get behind.

I don't always read every book I get out of the library. Some I wait too long to read and get yelled at to return already (i.e. I can't renew it because someone else has got it on hold). And some, I admit, I shitcan. My friend Patti once said she never finishes a book she doesn't like because it's like being in a bad conversation -- she'd never stick around to finish that -- so why put the time into a lesser book?

Mistah says he always knows when I'm reading a book I really love. Because when I'm reading a book I really love, I am focused and still and absorbed and I never look up.

When Mistah and I were on the road we read and read and read and read. When people ask us how we possibly could have put up with eachother in a tiny VW camper for 7½ years, we always answer "we read." One couldn't get away from the other bastid physically, but mentally? Oh yes.

Mistah and I had a long conversation with his Mumsie the other day about how we read in bed every night and, in a perfect world, every morning -- a delicious habit leftover from our years on the road -- and Mumsie said she never reads in bed, neither at night nor in the morning, because she can't get comfy with her pillows. I know, right? I had the same reaction. I cannot imagine not reading in bed. It's one of my favorite things in the world. When I was a kid and my friend Denise slept over, we'd end the night each reading our own book in our own parallel pink-festooned twin bed, having kicked out whatever sister was my roommate at the time.

I agree: Best. Sleepovers. Ever.

That's right. Cool kid then, cool kid now.

Now if you'll excuse me, I've got to get back to my book.

Thursday, November 29, 2012


My husband leaves really early every morning. My alarm goes off just as he is about to head out the door, but he never leaves without saying those three magic little words: I love you “what’s the plan?”

I swim toward consciousness and try desperately to find an answer. What day is it? What’s going on? Who has what? When am I working out? I sometimes come up with a response before Bill gives up and heads out while I plea with him to just text me later. I’ll figure it out, I always do.

Yesterday the kids both had stuff to do after school, my boy needed to be picked up and have some food thrown at him before getting dropped off at the Y. My girl needed to be picked up and delivered to girl scouts (with nut order form, with dues, with $ for pizza) and would then be transported to the Old Globe for a seasonal production of How the Grinch Stole Christmas (love) and dropped off at home.

Once I factored in the most important issue of when and where I planned to work out, I considered a couple of options before deciding that I would leave work a little early to pick up the boy from the y and drop him at home, and I figured I’d still have time to stop by sports authority for the new insoles that I felt I desperately needed inside of my shoes before this next workout.

Great plan! I texted Bill with the news. I could tell he shared my excitement about the greatness of the plan by reading between the lines of his deeply heartfelt response: “ok” swoon!

I picked up both kids plus one extra, fed everyone taquitos, dropped the boys at the Y, brought the girl back to work, Bill picked her up, Check! Check! Check! Check! Check! I hurried to leave work at the appointed time to retrieve the boy, drop him at home, and take care of my tootsies at the sporting goods store right next to the gym. Che………

Then the extra boy’s mom offered to pick them up from the Y and take them to dinner before dropping my boy at home.

My great plan got even greater! And now I could finish up that last bit of work before heading straight to the store/gym. Plenty of time.  

Plenty of time, plenty of time for answering texts and emails and questions, still plenty of time.

Then…Shit. Not enough time.  Gotta go! Late! I need those insoles!

I raced over there, put hair up and removed make up en route. Found nowhere to park, faced off with cranky people going the wrong way in the parking lane, squeezed into a semi legit spot by the gas station, and ran in to the store with my gym bag in one hand and my $6 coupon in the other. I went straight to the insoles, then the register. Check! Check! Check! 

There was only one person in line. She was from Hawaii. She had called ahead to have a  jacket set aside because she was taking a trip to North Carolina. The jacket was really soft. It wasn’t the one that the helpful clerk had pulled, and look how funnily she had spelled her Hawaiian name! Oh but the other clerk had grabbed the jacket! There it was. Oh yes, it was soft! Soft and warm. Have a great trip! Oh. My. God.

One million hours later, it was my turn. I asked to borrow scissors while the insoles were being rung up. I presented the coupon, swiped my card, and signed while yanking my old insoles out and lining them up against the new ones to trim down to size. I stepped aside for other shoppers but inserted the new insoles right there at the counter, apologizing for my ridiculousness and explaining that I was trying to make it to a 5:30 class. The cashier checked the time. 5:30. I was still in my work clothes, and would have to high tail it all the way through the big fancy gym to get to the locker room and change. I eyed the store’s dressing room … how ridiculous was I willing to be?

Oh yes I did.

I stripped in record time and pulled on my pants, sports bra, and tank top. My shoes were already out, and I rustled through the bag for some socks. Argh, SOCKS! Why do I NEVER have socks in my gym bag? Last time I had forgotten my socks, I had rushed into this very self-same store and picked up an 8 pack of socks for a cause. None of those sassy pink ribboned socks were still in my bag, and I thought I’d have to make another dash for the checkout with a new pair. Then my little eye spied a tiny white bundle nestled deep in the dark recesses of my bag. Socks! 

All I had to do was throw them on, I’d be in my shoes and warming up jogging over to the gym in seconds flat.  How long does it take to put on a pair of socks? Socks are like the world’s most straightforward and easily accessible clothing items.  I was so happy I had found a pair of socks! 

These socks


Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Tuesday, November 27, 2012


I know Thanksgiving is yesterday's news -- actually, last week's news -- but I still feel the need to share because the prepping of side dishes around these parts was momentous for two reasons:

1. Mistah did the cooking.

2. I did the photo taking.

Mistah is an awesome cook but I am a terrible photographer so please keep your "that's a photo of what?" comments to yourself.

Mistah was slated to bring two dishes to my Mom's: his World-Famous Garlic Gorgonzola Smashed Red Potatoes, and his World-Famous Turnips.

I know: the World is a big place, and to have worldwide fame is quite a feat. What can I tell you? The Mistah is a talented, yet modest man.

Okay, Step One: chop onions then put them in the food processor for finer dicing.

Actually, wait, that's not true. That's Step Two. Step One, as I've mentioned before, is to do the Jacques Pépin and pour oneself a glass of wine before doing anything in the kitchen.

Step One accomplished. Nicely done, Mistah.

And now we can get back to those diced onions and garlic . . .

. . . and red potatoes . . .

. . . and that all-important, put-a-smile-on-your-face ingredient, gorgonzola.


The turnips are a little less dramatic, but just as delish.

Potatoes? Cooking nicely.

Turnips? Ditto.

Dinner during the enterprise? Chicken quesadillas . . .

. . . and leftie rice-and-asparagus with black beans, which yes is weird, but is what we had in the fridge.

A good photographer would have taken lots of shots of of Mistah draining the turnips and smashing the red potatoes and stirring the garlicky love and using every pot and pan and utensil in the house but:

1. I'm not a good photographer, and

2. It was all so entertaining I mostly sat on a stool in the corner drinking chardonnay, watching in awe.

I was on pots-and-pans duty, however, which is not-for-nothing because have I mentioned? Mistah uses every pot and and pan and utensil in the house.

And then . . . voilà!

Time to pack up the fabulousness and hit the road . . .

. . . making sure to bring a few of our friends along.

Monday, November 26, 2012

not sassy

If you've got to sweep, you might as well sweep in style.

I once swept in style.

I introduced you to my Sassy broom friend a few years ago when she first gained real popularity in this home of ours.

that little devil dog was no match for sassy

Fast forward 100 pounds:

You keeeeled her!
It's not the first thing she's killed, and it surely will not be the last.

But it was the sassiest.

I'll never sweep again.

Friday, November 23, 2012

Plymouth rock in a glass

I shared a most excellent Thanksgiving day dinner with my fabulous mother yesterday at none other than the Grant Grill in the famed and historic US Grant hotel in downtown San Diego.

This was actually our second Thanksgiving dinner here, and we again found the food to be amazing, service stellar and company the best.

We weren't quite ready to jet off after feasting, however, so hit the bar instead. We perused the beer list, but after giving the cocktail menu a glance, decided we must taste the Smashing Pumpkin. We didn't have any pumpkin pie, and there would be no leftovers, so it was the right thing to do.

Apparently we aren't the only fans:

Jack o'liquor, sans goblet. Cheers!

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Happy T-Day! all our gorgeous and spectacular friends and families, far and wide.

Credit: stolen from internet

Now get out there and tell your peeps you love them.

Happy Thanksgiving!

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

too random for words

I was cleaning up some files on my computer, and came across a folder that was named to indicate that it contained photos taken by my boy. I didn't look at the date, just double clicked to behold the most awesomely bizarrely random photos that I have ever seen. And I've seen some bizarrely random photos in my day.

It starts with a heartwarming series in my driveway, with two tiny wee tattooed lunatic nutbars:

Next we move indoors, to enjoy the special unique perspective of a young boy not yet too cool for fun:

Then we prepare to go somewhere

And hey, it's Christmas time!

Back home... a canine investigation

then there are approximately one million photos from Hawaii. Beautiful, stunning photos of the glorious big island. But you've seen all of those, those are not what we are here to discuss today.

We're here to discuss the affects of wind on the face of a boy in the back seat of a convertible in Hawaii.

I'm sorry about that.