Sunday, September 27, 2009

Sunday Stuff-ing.

Menu of the Day:

In my glass: Toasted Head chardonnay.

Last iTunes purchases: Jason Isbell, Drive by Truckers, and a cool gal named Eilen Jewell (not to be confused with that Jewell chick from Alaska who writes bad poetry and used to live in her van.)

Best thing that happened this week: For the first time in a month since his son died, I saw a glimmer of hope that my brother Troy was starting to sound like his old self. He and his son Brian are far stronger than i ever knew.

Photos: Brian's band played last night and i saw this gal wearing red high heels with black knee highs and she danced so cute. I kept trying to get a photo of her dancing shoes and got lucky when her left foot stepped in the light. The other photo is Brian standing in the doorway of the place where they played. It has a half moon and the sign popped out without flash.

What i keep forgetting: To watch the new season of The Office. Thank goodness for DVR. And TXGrits, we still haven't watched the Georgia O'Keefe show yet. Have you?

If someone gave me a thousand dollars and told me i had one day to spend it only on myself: I actually had to think about this, but i think i might spend it on underwear and new boots. I might also use about $300 of it on iTunes.

The best decision i made this week: Brian and i booked Thanksgiving for a four day vacation on the Puget Sound, just ourselves. No family. (We have never blown off a family holiday before, so it's kind of brave of us).

Famous people i would like to meet: Obama's daughters, the author Richard Russo (I just know he would be a terrific guy) and Tyler Florence from The Food Network.

Least likely famous person i want to meet: SO many, but these folks come to mind: Glenn Beck, Donald Rumsfeld, That chick from the Progressive Insurance commercials, Sean Hannity, Jim Carrey.

I told you so: I always knew that John Edwards was not a candidate i could ever support. I NEVER liked him and loved it when Don Imus used to always call him an empty suit. He was too schmoozy. (I love how Eugene Robinson wrote an article about him being a total cad.)

My new favorite song that I am getting ready to wear out: Last week it was the one Kylee was talking about (The Black Crowes, The Last Place that Love Lives). This week it might be I Believe by JJ Grey and Mofro. (I forgot to mention i did buy Mark Knopfler's new cd and a bunch of a band called Sister Hazel.)

What I am looking forward to: a new union president at my office after this election is over - (it would make my life so much easier); no family dramas; autumn weather; our four day getaway during Thanksgiving.

I am thankful: that i was not born an only child. (Sometimes my parents drive me crazy enough to make me often wish i was an orphan. But i do love my brothers.) They are so cool and so freaking handsome and just really good men. I am very proud to be related to them. I am also thankful for my good friends. I am thankful for underwear that fit perfectly and don't ride up your butt, my new jeans that are expensive, but so comfortable and fit so well, that i live two miles from work, and for my husband, for so many reasons.

Edited to add: I am also thankful for Kylee, who has made it possible for me to not have children of my own without regret. She is not only a surrogate daughter, because she is also like a surrogate sister and a best friend all rolled in one.

OK, your turn!

Here are my hat photos that Brian took tonight. Thank you TXGrits. I love them! They are so cute!


Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Just Stuff. Not much really.

Menu of the Day:
I took this photo to show off two things. My new slippers that Modern Hippie/Kylee referred to in a comment recently. I bought these so i can walk around sweeping up my hardwood while brushing my teeth. When they get dirty you just throw them in the wash. I don't know why everyone thinks they are hysterical. I think they are soberly practical.
Listening to: Jason Mraz's "I'm Yours". I think i am wearing this song out.
Last itunes purchase: I bought some music last night. I already forgot their titles. I'll be back.....OH yeah, State Radio's "Right Me Up" and at Kylee's request, Citizen Cope's "Left for Dead"
Book: Today, I just bought the Jon Krakauer's book about Pat Tillman's service in Afghanistan and Iraq. So far i like it. I backed off on the Teddy Kennedy autobiography. I might buy it when it comes in paperback. But after looking through it i was afraid it would be another thick book in my stack (like the Bill Clinton book) that I never wanted to finish and now it takes up too much room.
OOps: i forgot to say the second thing about my photo. The second thing is louie/louie/Sarah, my longest best friend i've ever had sewed these pajama bottoms. And as i mentioned earlier, they even have pockets!
The Best thing that happened today: I got my hair highlighted today and it looks good. I wish i could blow dry my hair like my stylist does.
1. I am thinking that i can't be working too much longer at the union job i'm doing now. Maybe one more year at the most. It might be temporary. but i don't know. I don't like the feeling.
2. the problem is it pays too well to casually leave it behind and the benefits are too awesome.
3. the other thing is i don't know how to do anything else but work in education. And i'm not sure it's better anywhere else.
4. I wish i could take a sabbatical.
5. But i don't think they would give sabbaticals to someone who just wants to lay around all day watching the HG channel or reading books.
6. I should have gone into editing for a major publisher. Wouldn't that be so cool to read for a living? LOL.
7. I think i want the job at iTunes who decides about the Just for You section. That if you like Joe Cocker, well then i bet i can find some Tom Petty songs that you might like too. Same with books. I could do that too. If you like Ciderhouse Rules, chances are you will like Prince of Tides. that sort of thing.
8. Better yet, i can come up with names for new wines. If there already is a Fat Bastard then there should be a Skinny Bitch; If there is a Working Girl Red, there should be a Streetwise Chick Shiraz; how about Freefall, or Overtime or Reminisce (did i spell that correctly?)
i'll think of more later,
9. Please add your own ideas for wines!
10. Ok, that's all i got for tonight.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

End of summer musings.

Menu of the Day:
Music: Van Morrison's "Sometimes We cry" - he does this song with Tom Jones and it's pretty cool.
Book: FINALLY finished that Pat Conroy book. Dammit, i hate it when an author takes 10 or 15 years to write a book and you have been waiting oh so patiently for those years only to find the book is crap..... Rebecca Wells is another author who comes to mind.
Last iTunes purchase: I'm into Mofro these days. I bought "The Wrong Side". also bought a song from the new Black Crowes, "The Last place that love lives". (I love this song so much!) Also this cool song by Marah called "Walt Whitman Bridge". Never heard of marah or mofro a month ago but they are so cool.
The Best Thing that Happened this week: My longtime great friend Sarah/louie louie sewed me a pair of striped pajama bottoms with pockets and they fit perfectly! I want to wear them to work they are so comfortable! And they are flattering too!
DVDs: i am still watching "Tropic Thunder" (Kylee i agree with your critique on your movie blog!) but it still makes me laugh. And who cannot love Robert Downy Jr. in that. PLUS Tom Cruise is fabulous and we know how much we don't like him these days, but you can't deny his acting talent. I didn't even recognize him until halfway through. I kept waiting for his appearance. I have "Sunshine Cleaning" and "State of Play" next to watch this weekend.
Books I can't wait to buy: Two books come out next week. Ted Kennedy's memoir on Monday and Jon Krakauer's new one about Pat Tillman, the NFL player who quit to fight in Iraq and Afghanistan after 9/11 and got killed by "friendly" fire.
Biggest Small Irritation this week: My sister in law (on my husband's side) wrote us to try and work out our family Thanksgiving plans in an email . I wrote her back that she should know that i would kick her ass for talking about the holidays before summer is even over. What i really want to do is go somewhere for the holidays. Why is it that as we get older we start to dread them so much, or is it just me?
I am looking forward to: Autumn. I actually like it when it starts to get darker. I like eating dinner by candlelight. I always sort of feel like an old early bird dinner eater when we have dinner when it's so light outside. I also like the feeling that the time is late but when you look at the clock you realize you lots more you can do before bedtime. I love the colors. Sweaters. Red wine instead of chardonnay and viognier. Boots. Especially new boots. A new coat. Fires in the fireplace. And watching movies and DVDs and my favorite shows.
Ok, that's it. Only a Menu, no musings. What's going on with you all?

Thursday, September 3, 2009

Permit me one more post about my family.

While looking for quotes the other day i came across this little story that Troy had written in 1995 for our sister Kelly's funeral. Kelly committed suicide at the age of 35 after many attempts, starting as early as the age of 8. I hadn't read this piece in years. I was thinking about asking Troy if he still has this because of what is going on now.

As i had written here a few days ago, Troy's son committed suicide at the age of 24 on August 20. Unlike our sister, Joshua was not addicted to alcohol or drugs and there were no outward signs, nor were there any earlier attempts.

I don't normally put this kind of family stuff out often, but for some reason i feel a need to not move on quite yet with the blog, pretending that everything is normal. Nothing is normal.

I know with time the rest of us in the family will move beyond what feels so terrible now, but for Troy and Josh's older brother Brian, nothing will ever be normal again for them. In being around them these past two weeks i have found they are both much stronger than i had thought earlier and I take comfort in that.

Anyway, i love this piece that Troy wrote and wanted to share with you all what a special brother I have. He is kind man of simple tastes, an endearing lack of sophistication, and a deep heart and soul. His son Joshua was very much like him.

* * * * * * * * * * * * * * * * *

When I was young, there was a tree growing near our house in a field across the way. This tree was not ordinary. The difference between ordinary and extraordinary was the life in this tree. The tree was not in good shape, it was split in two. Dry frail branches and wood revealed by the split was brittle and weathered. It was not a big tree, for it never fully matured.

As fragile as the tree was, one branch strived to produce, sucking all the nutrients it could from the earth. The end of this branch revealed its identity - a perfect peach dangled from the branch like an ornament on a Christmas tree.

How could a half dead tree still bear fruit? I stood in awe of that peach. I never wanted to pick the peach for fear it would not produce the next year. I admired its beauty and strength.
Year after year, the rest of the tree was aging and splitting even more. The brush of berry bushes, grass, vine and ivy overwhelmed it. Engulfed by its surroundings made it harder to spot where the peach was, but when your eye would catch it hanging on its last branch . . . . it was still the most perfect peach. I reached to it and touched the fuzz and knew it was firm. This peach was not to be picked by me ... or anyone else.

Years past without me visiting the tree, but I always knew it was producing one perfect peach. The end was inevitable given the tree’s dying trunk.

My last visit to the tree was not surprising, for the earth had finally taken the tree. . .

But God had picked the peach.