Root Vegetables For The Win

January 30, 2015 § 2 Comments

Lately my mind has been full of inane thoughts.  My blog has been full of angst, frustration, tears, and too many parentheses.  Let’s change (most of) these things.

My visit to Michigan was wonderful.  I know I have mentioned this on my blog before but it bears repeating: I love my family and I am so grateful to have them.  This trip was exactly what I needed, despite the 24 hour stomach bug hitting Lucy, Jul, and Daniel while I was there.  I just hung out at their lovely new house, played with the kids every single hour of every day, and refreshed my soul with the wealth of love and hope they have.  (Digression: I am waxing poetical today because I watched Jeopardy last night, and one of the categories was Poets & Poetry.  Would you believe none of those three female contestants could complete Whittier’s famous couplet: “Of all sad words of tongue and pen, the saddest are these: it might have been”.  They clearly did not read Anne of Green Gables eight hundred times like me.)  Veronica brought over her laptop and we did finish the Newsroom.  (Awww, Charlie!!!!! *sob* I threw a pillow at Veronica for not warning me.)  Cathy, Matthew, and I went ice-skating and then to a lovely local Mexican restaurant.  Ice-skating always makes me feel better about life, and when followed up by a hissingly-hot platter of caramelized onions, peppers, tomatoes, and beef, wrapped in warm tortillas with oodles of sour cream and ‘guac’… Life was very good in that moment.  Thank you, Matthew and Catherine.

We were at Sunday Mass and Father Steve was giving a really good homily, talking about doing the will of God, and he said “and we say yes” and Lucy piped up in her little-girl voice: “No! We say no!!” and Veronica and I died laughing silently in the pew.

On the drive out, I scored a free coffee by complimenting the Ohio-turnpike-EZon/off-Dunkin-guy on the Pittsburgh Penguins pin on his shirt.  So, go me and my big blue eyes and hockey knowledge.  It was a Large coffee too!

On Tuesday, we visited baby Cecilia’s resting place, and said prayers for her and sang Away In A Manger (Leo’s choice) to her.  It was the best way to end my trip, remembering all the love and sorrow and faith we’ve experienced as a family.

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Non-Michigan related thoughts:

Am I the only person in the world who loves group texts?  Do I have a problem because I love group texts?  Am I overly social?  Do I talk too much?  I think I like group texts because I love words and typing and funny retorts and friendship.  You’re all silly for not loving group texts.

You know what’s a fun challenge on a boring Monday morning?  Driving to work in the snow.  I love it, and I am not being sarcastic.  I really enjoy winter and my ability to maneuver my Corolla around the unplowed hilly roads of NEPA.

Last night I went to Arena with Jill, Erica, and Kelsi, and I got a really good burger.  It was their California Spicy Pickle burger (said name made me giggle like a child when I ordered it) and it was delicious.  Sometimes I forget how tasty a really good, hot, juicy burger is.  And the onions were raw, which was a nice change from my normal method of ordering caramelized-onion-anything.  Seriously, let’s talk for a moment about the humble onion and how incredibly good it is in all its capacities.  Who doesn’t enjoy being all “yeah I’m going to caramelize these onions and then throw some mushrooms and peppers and deliciousness in there”?  Caramelize is just one of those pretty cooking words; it automatically makes me happy for whatever I’m about to eat (see my rhapsodic thoughts about the fajitas in the first paragraph).

Root vegetables for the win.


Last Night I Dreamed

January 22, 2015 § Leave a comment

Last night I dreamed I walked into Sunday morning Mass and Danny was sitting in my family’s regular pew. It wasn’t blurry or fragmented like almost all of my dreams are, it was crystal-clear and lucid as a waking thought. I was surprised to see him, but I slid into the pew and he smiled down at me as he took my hand. He had his hair, it wasn’t buzzed as it had been for the last three years we dated. And when he took my hand, I felt it. I’ve never had a great sensory memory; it’s been almost a year since we broke up and very often now I can’t remember the sound of his voice, the inflections he’d give certain words, or the feel of his arms around me. They’re fleeting, those touches, and have faded over time like a worn and weary watermark.  I’m almost always grateful for that. But this dream was so clear, and vividly in color. He held my hand without looking at me, and it was his hand, the feel of it was exactly as it had been for six and a half years, clasped within my own. I leaned over in the pew and whispered to him, “I haven’t been a whole person since the day we broke up.” And he whispered “Neither have I.” And there it was, just like that, the pieces of my heart falling into place. In the dream, I breathed a sigh of relief as they slid back to normal, back to where they belonged after so long. It was like when you solve a puzzle, and you hear that almost visceral click as those oddly-shaped pieces snap together. And everything was perfect, and I felt whole, and happy, and his smile was as bright as the gold tabernacle gleaming behind the altar.
It was a dream. A clear, colorful, sensory one, but a dream all the same, and I do not put faith in dreams. Danny is gone from my life. I don’t hope anymore that he will return. I’ve studiously stayed away from knowing any new details about him. It’s been a while.  For all I know, he could have a new girlfriend. If he does, I wish him all the happiness in the world. He won’t show up at church for me. He didn’t even when we were dating.

But all day long, behind the work and the conversation and even the sound of my own thoughts, deep inside my bones I have heard and felt that secret sound: the almost inaudible schhlickk of satisfaction as the puzzle piece clicked into place.

Wintertime News

January 15, 2015 § 2 Comments

Here’s some lighter blogging material, complete with Caps Lock and way too many parenthetical clauses:

I am going out to Michigan next week, from Friday the 23rd through Tuesday the 27th, and I cannot wait.  Even though the absolute best part of visiting MI is seeing my family: Jul, Daniel, the dynamic duo of Leo and Lucy, and now my sister Cathy as well, there’s also all the friends I’ve made over the years from that flat, windy state.  Especially Veronica.  (I only refer to her as my friend because I don’t like to swear on my blog.  And because I need to stay on her good side for the next two weeks.)  Veronica and I have a baffling, discourteous, constructed on an elaborate mountain of lies, friendship in which she is a jerk to me and I am a spotless victim.  Basically she’s awesome.  Anyway, she’s promised to bring her laptop over so we can watch the 3rd (and inconsolably final) season of The Newsroom.  YAY VERONICA I LOVE YOUUUUUUUUUU!  I watched the first two seasons with my ex-boyfriend, but wasn’t able to watch the third because I don’t have HBO.  Enter Vee, with her Superwoman cape firmly in place and a (few dozen) bottle(s) of wine, and I’m finally getting to ogle Jim Harper again.


WP_20150104_15_19_37_ProIt’s been too long since I blogged about how wonderful my pet rats are.  (I consider myself something of a rat apologist.) Charles is the dark rat in the pictures, and he’s my snugglebug.  His favorite thing to do once I let him out of the cage is to jump up on my bed next to me and curl up against my arm.  He knows if he stays there, I won’t be able to resist, and instead of putting laundry away or something, I’ll give him a good ear rub every time.  Charlie isn’t the most handsome rat but he’s definitely the cuddliest rat I’ve ever owned, even more than my Mervy.  Charlie loves sleeping, and is losing a little weight (and fur unfortunately) now that he’s older, but he still hops around my room with plenty of energy.
WP_20150113_2900Henry is the other rat, the younger one with the white and brown coloring.  He is ridiculously funny.  He does the silliest things like dragging around sheets of tissue paper that are three times as long as his own body, shredding holes in the hammocks in the cage, hopping from corner to corner of my room.  He plays Tag with me: he’ll run up to my hand, lick it, wait for me to tickle him and flip him over, run away for about 15 seconds, and then come back and lick me again.  My little Hen is the cutest rat ever.


I’ve been rewatching Arrested Development on Netflix and I laugh out loud every single episode.  I also just finished watching Sherlock as well, and it hooked me from the beginning.  I can’t wait for the next season? episode? whatever is coming.  #Sherlolly for life


Back when I worked at the elementary school (wow, 8 years ago already!?) we offered a yoga class for a while, that began right after classes ended for the day.  I did yoga for almost a year and loved it.  I haven’t done it since, just because of conflicting work schedules and other things taking up importance, but last night I finally felt the burn of high plank pose again.  Man, it’s been too long.  My friend Erica offered to introduce me to the delights of hot yoga at Melt in Edwardsville and to my surprise (being one of those annoying winter lovers through and through!) I really enjoyed it.  The room was about 95 degrees and I was sweating like a prize racehorse.  But it felt good, really really good, to stretch my body and move through the different yoga poses again.  I never felt faint or like I couldn’t breathe, it was my muscles that were the problem.  My arms were shaking by the end.  I can’t wait to go back.


And because this is the internet in 2015, I leave you with An Inspiring Quote that I discovered recently: “Goodness is diffusive of itself.” – Aquinas.  I like that.  I like to ponder that.  Goodness is beautiful.



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