Saturday, March 31

thank you [for springtime]

Some things that made me happy and grateful in March, 
as recorded in my little notebook...

* having parents who are happy, married, and adventurers
* organizing drinks with my coworkers, finally!
* the movie Hairspray being on TV
* my friend Olivia's engagement!
* good coffee when I'm sleepy
* a letter from Aunt Betty Lou
* London at 6am - crisp, pretty, hopeful
* Heidi wanting to get coffee and talk about deep God stuff
* funny unexpected emails from friends
* The Hunger Games
* snuggling
* sitting in the sun, five days in a row
* Shelley moving to Denver!
* travel plans with Melissa
* my parents' ideal Italian farmhouse
* strawberries 

Happy April Fool's!

Monday, March 19

This weekend...

... I became a fan of The Hunger Games. I started the first book on a bus ride to Bristol and I finished the next day.  I was reading around other people who kept asking if it was really that good. If you're only into literature or complicated characters and plots, then maybe The Hunger Games isn't for you. But I love good adventure fiction written for kids. It's simple and powerful. Oooh... I just watched the movie trailer and got chills.

Speaking of adventures for kids, my friend Megan and I went to see We Bought A Zoo. I hadn't been to a light hearted PG movie in a long time. (They say "bad words" in PG movies these days! Or did I just not hear them when I was eight?) In short, Matt Damon's character buys a zoo and lives on the property with his two kids. There are lions and tigers and a big ole grizzly bear. I may have cried a little bit. Did you know the movie's based on a true story and the actual zoo is in England?  Stay tuned. I'll most definitely be taking a day trip this spring.

Happy adventuring,

Linking with love: Hunger Games, We Bought A Zoo

Thursday, March 15

Three day weekend list

Hip hip horray! Three day weekend! Here's what I'm doing with my tomorrow off:

* eat nice breakfast with Dave (Blueberry pancakes or fancy eggs? I think both.)
* get haircut (I mean. Look at me. I need one so bad.)
* hit gym
* job hunt
* download new country album (recommendations?)
* buy art supplies
* find copy of the first Hunger Games book

Hoping it's sunny and warm wherever you go!

Tuesday, March 13

Be still, my soul

I've been trying to write a post about Lent, but I keep tripping over my words. Instead, I thought I'd share some bits and pieces that've had me thinking.

"If you're working 50 hours a week, and sleeping eight hours a night (56 per week) that leaves 62 hours for other things. That's plenty of hours for a family life and a personal life -- exercising, volunteering, sitting on the porch with the paper, plus watching TV if you like."

Sojourners article on doing nothing for Lent

“One of the things the monks used to say: ‘Stay in your cell. The cell will teach you everything,’ Peterson told us in a conversation about simplicity: 'I took that personally in terms of my congregation. ‘Stay in your congregation. Your congregation will teach you everything.’ I was always thinking about projects, but I kept coming back to that until I was content to be just with these people. Receive from them. Not always thinking up ways to make their lives more interesting, or godly, or whatever.'”

And a quote attributed to Thoreau: 

"I make myself rich by making my wants few." 

How difficult it is to make my wants few. 

I drive myself a tiny bit crazy, wanting experiences, relationships, successes, character traits, and recognitions that simply aren't compatible with one another. Often I dream about living and working on a quiet farm. But I remember our time in Guatemala when the day moved so slowly, from chore to chore, rainstorm to rainstorm, and I went a tiny bit crazy then, too. 

Would I be satisfied milking cows every morning? Or simply working from home in a rural area?  (Because let's be honest. I'm never going to be a farmer.)

For Lent, I gave up blogs. That hasn't been going well. So I'm giving up giving up blogs. Instead, I'm trying to calm down. 

It's so hard to calm down

Be still, my soul. 

Psalm 131 

A song of ascents. Of David. 
My heart is not proud, LORD,
my eyes are not haughty;
I do not concern myself with great matters
or things too wonderful for me.
But I have calmed and quieted myself,
I am like a weaned child with its mother;
like a weaned child I am content. 
Israel, put your hope in the LORD
both now and forevermore.

Monday, March 12

This weekend...

... I had brunch with my friends Trisha and Megan. I ordered:

Heaven. The pancakes were so fluffy. The creme fraiche (what is creme fraiche?) so rich. The berry compote so tart. I almost went back for seconds the next morning.

The seafood and chicken paella Dave and I cooked Saturday night was pretty darn good, too. Fact: you can make very convincing paella and risotto from normal long grain rice.

On Sunday I discovered the charming Candid Cafe. It's tucked away on a quiet street behind Angel Tube Station and makes you feel like you're in on a secret. Cozy and colorful with lots of eclectic furniture and paintings and books. The staff are really rude and the coffee isn't great - agrees with me. But the cheesecake is yummy. And we got a little table in the sunshine. I'll be going back.

Sunday, March 4

This weekend...

... I had a couple of pints and a steak pie at Ye Olde Cheshire Cheese. It's a classic pub pub, with low ceilings and ornate wooden stair railings and bar tops, and it's been around since the 1500s. If you visit me, I'll take you there.

I watched Hurt Locker and can safely say I'd rather be an investment banker than an Improvised Explosive Device specialist.

Today it's so cold and rainy. My boots, raincoat, and umbrella didn't keep me dry, so I picked up some hearty lentil and sausage stew for lunch.

Right now I'm enjoying hot tea and an MTV special on Katy Perry's greatest hits with my roommate Shadma.

My favorite KP hit?  Teenage Dream, hands down. Doesn't it make you want to be in the middle of summer already?  I want to drive to Cali.

Stay dry, eat some stew.

Linking with love: rainy London photo