Bookish (and not so Bookish) Thoughts



Hey there! Link up in the comments (or just say hey)!

1. I just had momentary issue with passwords and gmail and it made me really, really consider moving over to Wordpress. Or Squarespace? Or...? 

2. I don't want to get bogged down complaining, but recently all of the "hats" I wear have seen very, very heavy. I hate the notion that we're supposed to just "practice gratitude" and "be thankful you have a xxxx to xxxx with/for/to." I am incredibly fortunate, but sometimes I just feel so overworked and under-appreciated.  

3. I am reading Cecile Richard's Make Trouble and am desperately wishing I had more time to fly through it. 

4. I made these Lemon Raspberry Snickerdoodles over the weekend and both my husband and I loved them. I just had the last one, three days later, and it was still pretty soft (I am definitely #teamsoftcookie). They were fun to make and I loved the pink sugar. 

5. So I am tentatively flying with Sawyer in June to see my mom, and then for sure in July to Canada. I have had no fears whatsoever about the actual flying part until that lady ALMOST GOT SUCKED OUT OF A PLANE YESTERDAY. Jesus. I think Southwest has handled it all well, and I am so happy they were able to land, but goodness. I guess always wearing my seatbelt is a good thing. 

6. This weekend is going yo be crazzzzzy- two days at Disneyland/California Adventure and then the LA Times Festival of Books on Sunday with friends. Obviously this is going to be fun and awesome, but I am busting my butt right now to make sure that my house is ready for my mother-in-law to stay here and that I'm getting extra papers graded.

7. I have been wanting a tiny tree tattoo on my neck for like four years and have yet to find someone who did detail the way I wanted in my area. Well, last week, of all people, Mandy Moore got one on her foot and linked to her artist. I checked him out and knew he was my guy (he's in LA). I emailed him and eventually he got back to me with his next available appointment... in October. I had no idea it would be that far out, but I should have known. I told him to sign me up- I've waited this long, what's a few more months?

Three Things I've Watched (and Loved) Lately

By now we all know that I don't watch TV, a combination of not having time, not being able to stay awake, and simply preferring to do other things. This past week or so I went balls-to-the-wall and watched not one, but TWO, movies and an episode of Chef's Table on Netflix. Crazy, I know. I can recommend them all:

Christina Tosi/ Milk Bar Episode of Chef's Table (Pastry Season)
I am a huge, huge, huge fan of Tosi and Milk Bar. I have her cookbook and purposefully booked a room at the Cosmopolitan when we were in Vegas last just so I could make a beeline for the bakery as soon as we arrived (it was so good). But looking past her mad baking skills is her ability to inspire. She's driven, dedicated, and passionate. The episode chronicled her rise to the top of the baking world while staying true to what makes her happy. I was actually a little sad when it was over. Can't we do a whole season on Tosi and Milk Bar? Can't I be her best friend?

Wonder
This is the movie based on the YA book about the boy born with facial deformities. I have only read the adapted children's book and have heard just a little about the story, so it was all new to me. It ended up being super sweet and genuine without being sappy and also taught an important message about acceptance. I truly believe all kids starting in about second grade need to see this film once a year. I must say that Julia Roberts and Own Wilson were delightful, as were the other members of the supporting cast. 

Isle of Dogs
My husband and I are huge fans of Wes Anderson, so when we saw that he was doing another animated movie we assumed that it was going to be like The Fantastic Mr. Fox, which we've watched with Sawyer. After we bought tickets on Sunday I saw that it was rated PG-13. Oops. We decided to go with it and that one of us would just take him out if we felt that it was too scary or inappropriate (or so far above his head that it was boring him). Luckily the only "iffy" part was when a dog's ear was bitten off and eaten by another one, but it was so stylized Sawyer just laughed. Scott and I loved this movie, and Sawyer seemed to as well, although I think he basically has no clue what really happened. 

Bookish (and not so Bookish) Thoughts

[pretend this is an awesome picture]

Spring break is over and we're back (just a day late due to a kid issue...) ! Please link up in the comments if you are participating!

1. During our car trip up North I listened to The Rules Do Not Apply by Ariel Levy, which I absolutely loved. It was incredibly thought-provoking and made me almost uncomfortable reflective about my own life at times. I also started listening to How to Party with Infants by Kaui Hart Hemmings, which is fun and entertaining.

2. Right now my students and I are all suffering through Joseph Conrad's Heart of Darkness, which I really wish we could remove from our curriculum for several reasons. I try to be honest with my kids- they know I love The Awakening and Things Fall Apart, but they know that Plath can be tiring for me and that I despise Heart of Darkness. But what I do instill in them, or at least try to, is that we can still appreciate literature that we don't particularly enjoy. 

3. This weekend is the calm before the storm- I don't have any definite plans other than household stuff and grading. After that the rest of month is pretty packed with Sawyer-related things, after-school work obligations, and an appointment or too. It should mostly be fun, but I'm going to try to enjoy being at home and getting some things done.

4. It finally occurred to me that I should have some sort of ID for Sawyer, since we are so often alone and he's too little to adequately articulate who he is, who I am, and how to get in touch with his parents. I ordered him a cool little Road ID, which will come in handy when we are at busy amusement parks or are on trips. He will think it's a FitBit like ours, so I think he'll be cool with it.

5. I subscribed to The New Yorker again. What was I thinking? There's no better way to make yourself feel like a failure than a weekly subscription to a dense magazine. The Junot Diaz article on his childhood trauma just killed me. 

6. A friend invited me to a concert at the Hollywood Bowl next month and while I was looking at the website I saw that they're bringing the Grease Sing-a-Long back! I almost died. I've wanted to go for years, but they haven't had it for the past year or so, so I assumed it was gone. Hopefully I can snag tickets as soon as they go on sale to the general public... 

What I Have Pre-Ordered



I never really pre-ordered books until recently, once I figured out that Amazon doesn't charge you until they ship your product (duh). Now if I know that I'm definitely going to buy a book when it comes out I pre-order it so I don't forget. Here are some of mine for the next few months:

April
Let Your Mind Run: A Memoir of Thinking My Way to Victory by Deena Kastor

You Think It, I'll Say It: Stories by Curtiss Sittenfeld 

May 
The Mars Room by Rachel Kushner 

June 
Florida by Lauren Groff

Yes, We (Still) Can: Politics in the age of Obama, Twitter, and Trump by Dan Pfeiffer 

July 
My Year of Rest and Relaxation by Ottessa Moshfegh

September
Lake Success by Gary Shteyngart 

November 
Becoming by Michelle Obama 

Spring Break






Spring break! You went so fast, you stupid b-word! At the time that this is being posted I'll be back in my classroom, talking to students about how much they hate Heart of Darkness and wondering how I'm going to get all the things done. But, I'm thankful for the time and am here to share how it went.

Originally my plan was to drive to Yosemite on Easter and come home on Wednesday. Sawyer came down with a 102 degree fever Friday night and I was pretty sure he had gotten my flu, so as soon as I woke up on Saturday I arranged with the hotel to change our trip to Monday to Thursday, illogically thinking I could get Sawyer Tamiflu that morning and that it would kick in and he would be better on Monday for the car ride. Luckily, I was completely wrong about the flu and Urgent Care said it was a throat infection that a dose of antibiotics helped with almost immediately. We stuck to the new plan, though, and set off for the 7 hour drive Monday after a low key Easter at home. 



We always stay at Tenaya Lodge right outside the South Entrance to Yosemite National Park- I think this trip was my fourth or fifth time. It's a little expensive, but considering the fact that it's quite nice and there are a few restaurants on site makes it worth it (there's not a lot of food options up there). I don't rough it- I'll hike all day but I want hot water and a clean bed when I'm done for the day. 



We hung out at the hotel Monday night, discovering some snow outside our room and buying some s'mores supplies. The next day we met my mom, two sisters, and my sister's boyfriend in the park and spent the entire day hiking to Upper and Lower Yosemite Falls and Mirror Lake. We covered about ten miles and Sawyer was such a trooper! He only whined a little bit at the very end, which was great considering he didn't nap. It was so fun to see my family and everything was beautiful.




The next day was just Sawyer and I, which was nice. Sometimes it's just easier to parent alone, right? We started the day early and did the super short hike to Bridalveil Falls, followed by the harder hike to the first bridge on the Mist Trail (it's fairly steep, especially for a little guy- we gained 48 flights of stairs!). Afterwards we just walked around the village so that he could pick up a pocket-full of rocks and eat ice cream (we did about 6 miles that day). When we got back to the hotel we walked around the area some and then ended with another round of s'mores, of course. 



We drove back on Thursday and DAMN was it a tough drive for me. I was really, really tired and just wasn't feeling the seven hours, especially when we hit some traffic coming into Southern California. At least my copilot behaved. 



Since then we've been hanging out. I graded a ton of papers, have been trying to get in extra workouts, and even built a cool LEGO set. Sawyer and I also made a quick trip to Knott's Berry Farm the other day for their Boysenberry Festival- I think I ate my weight in berry goodness. Luckily we have annual passes, so I didn't feel bad about just going for that and a few rides. 



How many days until summer break? 

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