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Showing posts from September, 2010

With Age Comes Wisdom....

Or something of the kind.

I have now been 40 a week and a half.  Statistically speaking, as a better-off American woman, I have lived half my life.  Not  bad--especially considering how many people I have known who didn't even make it this far. I think it also means I've learned about half of what I'm going to learn in my lifetime--which also isn't bad.  It gives me lots more to learn and experience, and it means there is hope for mastering that damn crockpot yet!

Some of the key things I've learned in the first half:

*  Too many adults lose the fun and playfulness in life

*   Consciously or not, I tend to spend more time with people who are open to trying new things, who have few dislikes, and are generally positive than with the people who have long lists of things they won't do or won't try.

*  Never wear shoes that hurt your feet, no matter how cute they are or what a great deal they were

*  If someone talks about how others have "abandoned" t…

Banned Books Week Continued: Banned Books That Kids Have Probably Already Seen As A Movie Anyway

What do the following movies have in common?

1. Clockwork Orange
2. Brokeback Mountain
3. Forrest Gump
4. Gone With The Wind
5. The "Harry Potter" movies
6. The "Lord of the Rings" movies
7. Precious
8. Sophie's Choice
9. The Color Purple
10. The Godfather
11. The Shining
12. There Will Be Blood
13. To Kill A Mockingbird
14. The "Twilight" movies
15. Willy Wonka And The Chocolate Factory

All are based on books that have been challenged or banned. You can read the reasons behind each one here:

American Library Association: Banned Books Week 2010: 15 Iconic Movies Based On Banned Books (PHOTOS)

but my personal favorite is Willy Wonka. It was locked away in 1988 by a librarian who decided that the book espoused poor choices. By 1988 every kid in America had probably seen the Gene Wilder movie on television at least five times, and if being turned into a giant blueberry for breaking the rules isn't tough enough for this librarian, she probably missed h…

In Honor of Banned Books Week - Banned Books That Might Surprise You

Giant peaches, hobbits, dictionaries, Little Red Riding Hood........we should be SO thankful that there are people determined to protect the world from such dangers.........


Banned Books Week: 10 banned books you might not expect - Yahoo! News

Banned Books Week Starts Tomorrow

Banned Books Week--which actually isn't a week-long retreat for the Texas Board of Education, though I can understand any confusion about that--kicks off tomorrow. 

Now, being me, a book getting banned or challenged almost automatically moves it to me "must read" list--especially since so often the book is being challenged by people who have never read the book.  Incredible as that seems, it never seems to phase those who ban books. 

The American Library Association has some great information about banned books, including the following list of most-often banned or challenged classics  (and you can blame the lack of proper punctuation on them, not me--I just cut & pasted):

1. The Great Gatsby by F. Scott Fitzgerald
2. The Catcher in the Rye by J.D. Salinger
3. The Grapes of Wrath by John Steinbeck
4. To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee
5. The Color Purple by Alice Walker
6. Ulysses by James Joyce
7. Beloved by Toni Morrison
8. The Lord of the Flies by William Golding

Things I've Learned This Week

*  Turning 40 really isn't stressful, since the entire year before when I told people I was 39, they thought I was really 40 and just lying about my age.

*  Some people are takers.  Other people are givers.  And a "giving" grandmother will send you home with 4 boxes of cucumbers from her garden and call a few days later to see if you need more.

*  We are having to prioritize canned tomato items this year as the tomatoes are so late.  Apparently salsa trumps everything, with chunky tomato sauce as a close second.  We think we'll have an easier time finding canned tomatoes without additives than salsa or tomato sauce without additives, because the person who is in charge of grocery shopping and our no-processed-foods diet (namely, me) failed to take helpful notes on such things.......

*  The majority of the birthday cards I receive talked about drinking wine.  Obviously, I am not a "woman of mystery" to my friends.........

*  Apples have a pretty decent shelf…

Pandora's Box

Andy and I now know for sure that we feel better not eating processed foods.  There is no doubt in our minds that our new lifestyle is better for us, and that the time spent gardening and canning is really worthwhile.  No questions. 


And after having canned 22 quarts of pickles and 10 pints of salsa in the last couple days, I really wish I could completely forget all about it and buy neon-green pickles just like everyone else.  It would be SO much easier!!!!!!

I Wonder Who......

SOMEONE here at Chateau Sutton-Goar thought that picking 2 buckets of apples and 4 boxes of cucumbers in the same night was a good idea.  I don't want to name names, but it would be the same person who was up to 1:00 am slicing and brining cucumbers, and is now sterilizing jars for the SECOND round of pickles tonight........

Turning 40

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Yesterday was my 40th birthday.  So far, being 40 is EXCELLENT.  I highly recommend it.  I started the day with Andy bringing me fresh homemade bread & coffee for breakfast in bed--or that was the good start.  The REAL start to the day was a cold-nose-on-the-face wake-up call from Theo, but the bread made up for it. 

I got to spend the day sewing & knitting, which is always nice, and for dinner....
Andy had offered to take me out to celebrate, but after having been gone for a week, a nice quiet dinner at home sounded MUCH better.....especially when it involves Andy's homemade naan.

After dinner we had 3 rousing rounds of 13 Dead End Drive:
an incredibly silly board game we picked up for 75 cents on Thrift Shop Day, and spent a great hour on the patio enjoying one of the last warm-ish summer nights and blissfully trying to murder each other's characters.  Ah, true love. 

And, this is the proto-type for the birthday gift Andy is making for me:
A writing desk!  The real one …

Lesson Learned Today

Know what the very best thing about turning 40 is?  Having 40 years' worth of friends to celebrate it with!

I Am Dog & House Sitting

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Meet Chicory--a Sheltie puppy belonging to a friend of mine.  There are actually two dogs, but the other dog is outside napping right now--probably to get away from the puppy.  It's very interesting to go from cats to dogs--I have gone from being "staff" to being "center of the known universe."  And whatever I have said about Theo being clingy,
he is NOTHING compared to the puppy.  Honestly, I prefer the independence of cats, but the dogs are easier to walk than Theo is.

Saturday I wanted to make a southwestern salsa recipe, but I didn't have quite enough tomatoes, so I ended up BUYING tomatoes
 because ours are just not really doing much.  It is September, and our tomatoes are just now starting to ripen.  Our weather has been crazy--it was 92 degrees on Saturday, we didn't even have a high of 70 yesterday, and it's supposed to be 73 today and 81 tomorrow.  Oh yeah--the global climate ISN'T changing.  We're just having really bizarre weather f…

Note To Self

Note to self:  Think about the list when sending your husband to Costco.  If he walks out with just a big package of toilet paper and a large tin of Hershey's Cocoa Powder, people are going to wonder..........