Pardon the blog hiatus. I'd like to tell you I've been busy, but rationalizing that complete untruth would take me a few more weeks.
The only thing out of the ordinary that even happened was a weekend trip to Provo, which was completely wonderful and entirely too short to see everyone I've been missing. I love Provo. I sometimes catch myself feeling like it's my hometown, and it makes me sad to think that after this year most of my ties to it will be cut. We had a great trip, though, visiting Christy and Jared and tiny, adorably sweet baby Joshua, who has huge hands and feet and dark hair and so much potential. The other highlight of the trip was being in the temple with my brother Nate. What a stellar kid. He's going to be a fantastic missionary, and I take turns loving that he's going and hating that he'll be so far away.
I recently (read: Sunday in between Sacrament Meeting and Primary) took a new "job" babysitting for another family. Every Tuesday, through the middle of the day. I went this week and it was delightful. Besides the fact that I might have endangered both children through my utter inability to buckle their carseats into my car. That is a tricky business, and don't let anyone tell you otherwise. Other than that, things went beautifully. Excuse me tooting my own horn, here, but the little boy did cry when I had to leave. Score one for the babysitter. That made up for the little girl asking me what the "spots on my face" were, and did I have them when I was little and would she have them when she got bigger. I told myself she was talking about my freckles. Nope. "Um, that's called acne, kid. Brace yourself for high school." The cutest moment of the day was when the little boy discovered a toy dog and dinosaur under his bed, and asked me, "What do you think they were doing?" Remember being little, when you thought all your toys had interesting lives when you weren't looking?
The flowers on our coffee table are wilting. Wilted? They're most of the way there.
We cut our grocery budget down $10 per month and it's amazing the triumph I feel from meeting that goal. It's like a game! It's my favorite game. It's the only game Colby doesn't beat me at. Because he doesn't play. If he did, no guarantees.
Oh, it was also my birthday. I got a lot of chocolate, and a big surprise from Colby which was the best part. And lipstick, and a football (well, a gift card for a football), and lotion, and a book about embroidery, and a kindle, and I feel like a fifth-grader telling you about everything I got. Except fifth-graders don't wear lipstick and fifth-grade girls don't ask for footballs for their birthdays and kindles weren't invented yet when I was in fifth-grade. I was so happy that my birthday was on Wednesday, because I work on Wednesdays, and this meant that I got to hang out with J, who, I decided, is the person (with the exception of Colby and maybe a few others) who I would pick to hang out with on my birthday. We laughed really hard and sang along with Neil Diamond and Guns and Roses in the car and were silly in public and got french fries at McDonalds. It was a good birthday and I was happy all day.
It is almost Spring. It is getting warmer and I am the most weather-impatient person in the world, so it is not getting warmer fast enough for me. But I'm still glad it's getting warmer. Maybe I will go to Sports Authority and redeem my gift card for that football and then Colby and I can play.
I am housebound today--no car. It's kind of fun, but unfortunately I took that to mean that today is a holiday and I don't have to do anything. This is not true. But it feels like it.
I just finished a sweet little book called The Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society, of which the only downfall was having to spend all that breath telling people the title when they asked what I was reading, and then enjoying their blank stare as they processed what I said. Which, in retrospect, happened a lot this week. It was just a nice little book, and that is the best way I can describe it. I appreciated what I understood to be the theme, which was that literature can carry people through hard times, because you know how I love literature.
Speaking of literature, my own literary society (consisting of myself and my mom, and which I have recently decided needs a name) has just finished reading The Sound and the Fury. That's if Mom has finished it. These other books I have been reading have just been entertainment and time-filling. Next we will read My Antonia. I am excited.
And speaking of books you ought to read, the book we read before The Sound and the Fury (proving that Mom always ought to pick the books) was Gilead. It was just a deep, ruminating and personal essay on mortality, in the form of a novel. A quote, for example:
“I feel sometimes as if I were a child who opens its eyes on the world once and sees amazing things it will never know any names for and then has to close its eyes again. I know this is all mere apparition compared to what awaits us, but it is only lovelier for that. There is a human beauty in it. And I can’t believe that, when we have all been changed and put on incorruptibility, we will forget our fantastic condition of mortality and impermanence, the great bright dream of procreating and perishing that meant the whole world to us. In eternity this world will be Troy, I believe, and all that has passed here will be the epic of the universe, the ballad they sing in the streets. Because I don’t imagine any reality putting this one in the shade entirely, and I think piety forbids me to try.” (Gilead, by Marilynne Robinson, p. 57)
Please read it.
Also, please read Atlas Shrugged. The movie comes out on tax day (so appropriate) and I can't wait.
As a final note, our dearest friends the Korean neighbors moved out on my birthday. But they're worth another post altogether.