Archives for September 2009

It’s 09/09/09… And it is LOVELY.

From the first moment I saw the video for The Beckoning of Lovely on YouTube I have been entranced by it – I loved the whole concept, the idea, the philosophy.

And now, the Beckoning of Lovely has grown into a living, breathing THING. I was able to join Amy Krouse Rosenthal and many others in Chicago for an Hour of Lovely this spring to hear more about this project and the next steps  Next stop? A Beckoning MOVIE. If you’ve never met or seen AKR in action, you may not know that she’s a creative, dynamic, energetic woman who has all kinds of ideas and I’m so in love with the idea of Beckoning.

The next steps are fundraising to make the movie happen. And in true “lovely” style, they’re hoping to fund via “universe funding” – meaning, Do you have two bucks? Can you spare two bucks? You can click HERE to donate via PayPal or find out where checks can be sent.

I’ve watched this closely from the beginning, and I can’t wait to see what happens from here. Whatever it is, it will be Lovely.

TIL Tuesday, Volume 3

My list is short today – because it’s kind of a special day.

Of course I love the first day of school. I love that my daughters were both awake and ready by 6:30 (really, that’s okay. I swear. I was awake, too). I love that they didn’t give me any fuss over breakfast, even though I couldn’t make muffins like I promised because someone used the last egg yesterday. I love that they helped me get backpacks ready to go and they got their shoes on without any drama. I loved dropping off Pumpkin at her daycare and that she immediately engaged with people and toys and barely took the time to kiss me goodbye before running off to hang out with forgotten friends. I loved taking The Princess to Starbucks and getting her a hot cocoa while I grabbed a cappuccino and talking with her and catching her beautiful face on camera – trying desperately to get a candid shot. (Failing, I might add). I loved watching her get on the school bus and then racing to her school so I could watch her get off that same school bus and walk her into her classroom. I loved watching her lead the way to hang her backpack in her locker and barely waiting for me to say, “Later gator” before diving into her day.

And right now, I’m working – and the house is quiet. I went out to grab a sandwich for lunch and came home to a house that remains quiet still. In a few hours, the school bus brings one child home and together we’ll pick up her sister and I’ll hear how they spent their days separate from me, and I’ll love their enthusiasm and their stories and their laughter about their adventures. It’s a day of what can be. I love it.

The transcript can be found here and I have to say that I loved it. I believe the President is an office that we should teach our kids to respect, whether or not we agree with the politics of the person who inhabits it. I rarely speak about my politics and my preferences, and I’ll keep it that way because there are blogs for that – and this ain’t it. But, many of you already know that yes, I happened to have voted for that dude that currently calls the Oval Office his own, and no, I never had any qualms about him speaking to our children. And if my kids hear messages like this every day, I’m totally okay with it.

But at the end of the day, the circumstances of your life – what you look like, where you come from, how much money you have, what you’ve got going on at home – that’s no excuse for neglecting your homework or having a bad attitude. That’s no excuse for talking back to your teacher, or cutting class, or dropping out of school. That’s no excuse for not trying. 
Where you are right now doesn’t have to determine where you’ll end up. No one’s written your destiny for you. Here in America, you write your own destiny. You make your own future.
-Barack Obama

My Stack of Books – It is Growing


I read. A LOT. My love of reading is something that I have treasured my whole life – from when I was a kid reading the old Betsy books by Carolyn Haywood (which my dad’s wife recommended because she loved them when she was a girl), to when I moved on to the Ramona series, to anything by Judy Blume, to the big vast world of books I read now.

My taste in books is not necessarily high-brow, nor would I call every book I read “thought provoking” – but I read these days mainly for enjoyment. I read because it’s an escape. I read because I relish the the words on the page and the time someone spent crafting just the perfect series of words to create a new world that exists only between those two covers (Unless, of course, some genius decides to ruin it by making it into a movie). I read because at the end of the day, there is no better way to relax and slow down the thoughts running through my brain to ensure I can fall asleep.


My love of reading is why I felt confident that I could make a lofty goal like, “Oh sure, I’ll read 250 books in 1,001 days.” Ouch. A lot of people have asked if I’m nuts and the short answer is, Maybe so – but I still believe this is an attainable goal. I’ve read 66 books so far (January through August) and am midway through number 67, so if I’m averaging about eight books a month, I don’t think it’s impossible.

I used to get twitchy if I ran out of books – which is probably what stemmed my whacky magazine addiction (I subscribe to MANY MANY MANY and I still pick some up on the newstand if the cover appeals to me). Right now, though, the likelihood of running out of books is pretty slim because I keep buying books to add to my pile – when I haven’t read the ones already waiting in line. I have about 14 books on deck right now, and several magazines as well. And yeah, “The Count of Monte Cristo” is on that pile. I think I may have to give up on that one and replace it with another “classic” for my 101 list.

Do you like reading? What are you reading now? Any good books on deck? Recommendations for me (because, yeah – my tower ISN’T QUITE TALL ENOUGH. I need more books).

Thursday Ten: This Time Next Week There Will Be School!

1. School starts Tuesday. The kids are thrilled. Really. They are thrilled too – at this point, they’re a little bored being home and hanging out and there’s nothing to do. When I suggest cleaning something, they tell me, “Well, that’s BORING.” No joke, ladies – that’s why I don’t want to clean either!

2. The Princess and I went to her school today to meet her teacher and walk around. Her teacher is awesome, and the classroom is set up nicely and I think it’s going to be a very exciting year for her. PLUS: She has her own LOCKER. Not a cubby, but an actual locker. My big kid is moving up in the world.

3. My mile time is continually improving. Booyah.

4. Music this week – “Fuego” Pitbull after watching the best of “So You Think You Can Dance” last night. Pasha and Lauren’s Shane Sparks hip hop routine to the song made me download it.

5. I wrapped up the last 365 Project on Monday and jumped right into my second year on Tuesday. In addition to continuing on with the AWESOME Envisage group, I’ll be chronicling my year with the folks of BD, as well. If you would like to join our Flickr group, lemme know!

6.  I missed Project Runway last Thursday (OH! The horror!). I’ll be trying to catch up this evening. Yes, I realize I’m a wee bit addicted to Project Runway. But I admit it – and we all know that’s the first step.

7. I just got an email in my spam folder with the name of someone I went to school with once. Made me laugh. I hardly think he really thinks I need to lose ten pounds since I don’t think he’s seen me since Clinton was in office. The first time.

8. GLEE was on Fox last night – did you watch it? I can’t wait until it starts next week. It’s just the kind of kooky thing I love.

9. My sister gets married A MONTH FROM TODAY. Wow. Where is time going?

10. I made a bunch of cookies yesterday and then mailed them out to people this morning and now? Now I want a cookie SO BAD, and there are NO COOKIES HERE. Oh, the tragedy.

Keeping My Eyes Open


Underneath my deck lives a bunch of dirt. There are shovels and holes from my daughters’ ditch-digging play (I’m not entirely sure what they’re doing, but I hope they find fossils for a millions year old allosaurus that we can sell to a museum for beaucoup bucks). There are weeds, there is grass, and there might even be s-n-a-k-e-s down there (I’ve never seen one, but it’s just the kind of place a yucky snake would live, and I’m certainly not wanting to trip over one).

But today, while walking outside with Pumpkin I saw a flash of color. I ducked beneath the deck (it wasn’t made for me to be walking underneath it, for sure), and found a sunflower.

We didn’t plant it.

We didn’t water it (thanks Mother Nature for all that rain, bee tee dubs).

There’s not even any exposure to sun under the deck.

And yet it grows.

And from this my mind can spin on forever.

It makes me think that you should always keep your eyes open because there’s beauty to be found in the least expected places. That even where once there was only dirt, sometimes flowers grow – that you can start with dirt and even unaided, with no deliberate help, amazing things can bloom.

Or sometimes a flower is just a flower. I don’t know. I’ve had no coffee today and I’ve been muddled up with a migraine.

But man, it’s pretty.

And now I will go back to ignoring it so it doesn’t die.