Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Bacterial Humor? Really?

I'm sorry, I'm a little busy right now. I'm feverishly searching through pages upon pages of food blogness looking for the best dessert recipe to try on July 4th. Something that ISN'T sheet cake covered in blueberries and strawberries. (Huh. Red, white and blue. I get it.)

But since you're here, you might as well know that I listened to Act 1 of Puccini's "La Boheme" on LP last night and I feel VERY cultured right now. I mean, we're talking plain-yogurt cultured. Seriously, it's nuts over here.

That was nerdy. I'm going to go "sift" through some more recipes.

Ha! See what I did there? I'm on a ROLL!

-The GLS

PS: Name my Kitchenaid mixer. I mean it, she needs a name...

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Pickin' and a-Singin'...

I don't usually feel that I have to defend my instrument of choice (ukulele) as being a versatile and often gorgeously-used little stringed thing. I just believe it, and I'm happy to oblige myself. But then I invent a potential (and imaginary) naysayer, just so I can post things like this and not feel weird. I'm proving the validity of the art form!

This is James Hill. He doesn't know it yet, but we are meant to be.

(Uhh...not really. But I love this song. And I love that he's playing a slide ukulele.)

James Hill with "Oh, Susanna".

Can't help it. Love it. Gonna go play it, even if my uke doesn't slide. Whatever.

-The GLS

Monday, June 28, 2010

Soliloquy #576.

Knowing how to manufacture happiness is a lost art, I fear. We turn to so many things to fill the voids and the abysses and the crevices and the cracks...we put our trust and faith in so many people and things, money and food and pleasure and technology. And yet, we have been given the ingredients and ability to manufacture happiness for ourselves, without any assistance from anything mortal.

And happiness has nothing to do with a lack of pain. We smile through the brokeness because we can build over the top of it. Sometimes that building is a rickety bridge, and we have to tiptoe over it, but we cross unscathed. Perhaps the odd splinter, but more or less unharmed.

We can build happiness side by side with other people, but believe must work on your own structure. Don't try to build another person's happiness with your own two hands. By all means, reach out and save it if it starts to topple, but don't try to push it back up all by yourself. It's THEIR happiness. Let them do it. Let them try. They need to try. And perhaps they'll repay you by lending you a hand on a toppling sort of day, too.

It's hard to see the building materials on a foggy day, when everything seems dreary and out of focus. It's hard to build anything when it's humid, or when the world is frozen, or when your blood just won't warm you. But you can do it. It's been done millions of times by millions of people before you, and it will be done again. By you. Today. Rub your hands together for warmth. Stick your face in a bucket of ice water. Refresh, renew, and then start again.

There's no blueprint to hold. Just you, and your Maker, and the makings He gave to you. There's no instruction manual for the wiring, aside from the Words He has spoken. There's nothing you need to buy, or beg, or steal. Forgiveness is given freely to you. And there's nothing you need to accept, just the grace to build.

And rebuild. And rebuild. And rebuild again.

Then click on the light, bask in the glow, dance across the foyer, trip across the bridges, run up and down the stairways, feel the intricacy of the knots in the walls, sing aloud and let your voice echo in the rafters, stand in the window at the top of the stairs and gaze out on the world that's gazing up at you, saying, "Wow. You look really happy."

And you don't have to say a word. Just smile.

-The GLS

Sunday, June 27, 2010


I apologize for not posting last night. Not that anyone is harboring any deep resentment against me for the oversight...I was a little busy.

And by "busy" I don't mean "productive". I just mean busy.

I was housesitting. I had spent the first part of that day chilling with the miniature dachsund who lives at the house. We ran around the yard, we turned on some music in the living room and danced around, I serenaded him on the keyboard while he gnawed on his stuffed alligator. Good stuff.

And then, we ventured upstairs.

Now, these people are good friends of mine. And I KNOW they have an XBox. I'm not dumb, nor unobservant. I knew, and I didn't think it would be a problem.

But as we climbed the stairs up to the rec room, I started to realize all the games I could suddenly play. All day. With no one to be accountable to except a cuddly dachsund, and he was happy as a clam just sitting around with me. Crap. This was not good.

Needless to say, I played. A long time. Started with Halo (the original), and blasted through the Silent Cartographer before I finally had to turn it off, knowing I was getting hooked. It was a brief moment of clarity before I saw it...sitting there...calling me...

Fable II. Which I had never played.

Aside from breaks for meals and walking the dog once or twice (along with an impromptu yoga session out on their back patio today and baking a loaf of bread...more on that later), I played Fable. In less than 48 hours I earned gold, I killed monsters and bandits, I changed my outfit several hundred times, I kept randomly and accidentally setting off spells in town and causing all the townspeople to run away from me ("Wait! Come back! I didn't mean it! I'm sorrrrryyyyy!!"), I finished quests, I ran The Crucible, I memorized most of Albion's landscape and cartography. Seriously, I was hooked.

It occurs to me, in the quiet and solace of my own bedroom, that I'm glad I don't have an XBox. Sure, it's ridiculously fun. And sure, you feel accomplished in a...virtual sort of way. But I don't think I have enough self-control to stop when I need to stop, unless I'm forced to by the fact that the people who OWN the house are coming home and it would be weird if I wouldn't leave simply because I needed to continue playing the game.

Actually, it was church that finally dragged my sorry butt off the red futon. And church tonight was AMAZING. I laughed, I cried, I sang. It was fantastic.

-The GLS

(PS: You didn't hear it from me...but my review of Fable II? Unmissable. Seriously, play it at least once if you get a chance. It's really fun. But remember...don't get hooked. And always play video games with a dachsund cuddling on your lap. Guaranteed, it's better that way.)

Thursday, June 24, 2010

Why I Am.

Sometimes I think I must be very boring.

I'm not looking for sympathy. You can agree or disagree with the above statement, it doesn't bother me any. But I've been mulling it over and over in my head, and I really do think I' least somewhat...boring.

I don't go out much, though I do enjoy it on occasion. I've never been drunk (and never intend to be, thanks). I don't have a lot of drama in my life. I avoid complications whenever possible. I like to sit at home, knit a little, watch a movie, sit in the quiet and bask in stillness and listen to myself think. Dream about other worlds, or about new recipes to try, or about that beautiful antiquey thing I saw at the market the other day.

I wasn't always this way. I know it. Even a few years ago, I would enjoy drama. Feast on a bit of stress. Enjoy the prospect of staying up late and relish the thought of driving home in the wee hours. But somehow, that all faded, leaving me here. In my room, with the music off and the window open, listening to the gathering dark and the kids playing across the street and my own frenetic typing.

And it's hard to explain to people, this simplicity I've carved out for myself. Heck, it's hard to explain to ME sometimes, when I feel obligated to go out, or when I wonder if perhaps I would be a happier person with a little more crazy in my life.

But then I find myself sitting alone and undisturbed, and I remember why it is that I love the calm. I love that I know myself very intimately. More intimately than those who party nightly could EVER know themselves. I learn a new facet of my being every day, every hour, and I have the strength to face my foibles, and I have the wisdom to alter my paradigms. I am flexible, yielding, but unbreakable. And someday, I will be able to offer myself to another beloved person, and I'll actually know what the gift is inside the fancy wrapping paper. I'll know me.

I don't have to be you. You don't have to be me. But understand me, as I endeavor to understand you. You may find me boring. But I like it that way.

-The GLS

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Tomatoes & Optimism.

(We're back to the ampersand up there again, are we? Yes. Yes we are.)

Sometimes, things don't turn out according to plan.

No, scratch that. MOST times, things don't turn out according to plan.

Take tonight, for example. I had it all planned out. A beautiful French Tomato Tart for dinner, and basil ice cream for dessert. That's all. Nothing TOO crazy. Adventurous, yes, but crazy? Non.

Or perhaps, oui.

I left work MUCH later than planned, hit the Ballard bridge going up, and took a long time selecting stuff at the grocery store. Not to mention once I GOT home, I spilled the makings for the basil ice cream all over the place and had to start over. The kitchen was a mess, and I barely got the dough I made last night (for the tart crust) thawed enough to be workable.

It was crazy. And unexpected. And unpleasant.

And yet...?

Because the Ballard bridge went up (and I left work a bit late) I managed to avoid most of the going-home traffic I usually hit. My taking a long time at the grocery store assured good quality organic products for the best price. By the time the tart was done, my parents and I sat outside and toasted their anniversary to the setting sun and the sounds of the birds. Perfect timing.

As for starting the ice cream over again? Yeah, it was annoying. Especially after accidentally curdling the milk when I was trying to make it into custard and having to re-blend it into submission (my mom's idea). But you know what? The Kitchenaid mixer is quietly and calmly blending it as we speak into what is SUPPOSED to be ice cream. Will it work? Yeah, I have no idea. But it's worth it to find out. Because if I made a mistake, I know what it is, and I can fix it for next time.

Sometimes you just have to look on the bright side.

No, scratch that. MOST times you have to look on the bright side.

-The GLS

By the way, the recipe for that ridiculous (and FANTASTIC) tart can be found here. I love me some David Lebovitz. :)

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Carnitas! Kinda.

First of all, let me apologize up front to my vegetarian friends (yes, I have a few...and you know who you are). This post deals primarily with...get ready...MEAT.

Yes, meat. Pork, to be precise. The leftovers from Father's Day, a bowl of slow-roasted cast-iron-caressed ribs just waiting to be used for something more. Something...better. Something beyond simply sitting in the fridge.

It's my parents' anniversary this weekend, so my gift to them? Making myself scarce for a few days (later this week), and cooking dinner for them not once, but TWICE. Tonight and tomorrow night to be exact.

Tonight's adventure: how to make something delicious, unusual, summery (it's the first nice day we've had in awhile), and also economical. In other words, how do I creatively use up the leftovers?

After a great deal of pondering, I turned to David Lebovitz, who is becoming my favorite chef/food blogger, and his recipe for carnitas.

For those who just tuned in, carnitas are a Mexican pork, typically slow-roasted with a variety of seasonings. Seeing as how I already had the cooked meat, all I needed was to give them some zip.

So zip them I did. Cumin, chili powder, red pepper, cinnamon, garlic, cilantro, fresh lime juice, onions...seriously, the smell alone was enough to knock me out. I grabbed some corn tortillas on the way home from work, opened a fresh container of guacamole and lime-habanero salsa (thank you, Trader Joe's!) and let my parents make some seriously wicked tacos.

I'm telling you, we had a feast. We ate up all the leftovers. And we were satisfied. there anything better? Besides that...have you noticed...I made something that wasn't soup and didn't involve pasta!! Aren't you proud? I'm branching out!

What's going on in the kitchen tomorrow night? Oh, baby. It's going to be good. I even started the preparations beforehand, and there's a ball of simple dough sitting in plastic-wrap blanket in my fridge, currently. Also, the bowl of my ice cream maker is freezing happily in the freezer, getting ready to be used. Tomorrow night promises to be EPIC.

Culinarily speaking, of course.

-The GLS

Monday, June 21, 2010


As per the title, I needed a little bit today. But I gave myself a good talking to, and we're back on good terms. I don't want to ever get back into the headspace I found myself in even a year ago. No, sir. We're happy, here. And that's because we have Jesus (and by the can too!). :)

Anyhoo, I started knitting a new pair of handwarmers on this, the first day of summer. I figured, why not? I think I'm going to line these ones, too, with some fabric from a blouse of mine that ripped awhile back. I kept the fabric because I thought it was pretty. Maybe I'll actually DO something with it? Shocking!

I'm intending for these handwarmers to be a bit girly and spring-timey, not so much heavy winter ones. So the lining is going to be a thin cotton floral print, and the yarn itself is a fairly lightweight heathered peach color. Throw in a bit of moss stitch and some plait around the cuff, and you've got yourself a pretty pair of fingerless non-gloves! That's what I figure, anyway.

I also inherited (shoot, there's that word again!) a whole box of FANTASTIC old-fashioned buttons from my great-grandmother's sewing kit. Seriously, these things are AWESOME. If I give you something with buttons on it, they may very well have once belonged to Grandma Dot. Just so you know.

Off to make a little more headway on these handwarmers.

Happy first day of summer! Hope it's warmer where you are than it is where I am. :)

-The GLS

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Next Stop...Basil.

Wow. I am very, very sleepy, because this is super late to be blogging, but I HAD to tell you all about the gift I gave my true love ( Kitchenaid Mixer) this morning!


Booyah. I'm really excited. And it fits like a charm. Let's just hope it works! Especially since I got it through craigslist, so there's, you know, very little chance of a return policy. Heh. But all the pieces are in order and it's never been used, so I think we're in business!

It was a great Father's Day. Much food was eaten, much laughter was had. Much to-doing about babies and graduation news and such. Oh, and I may be purchasing a new computer soon. Stay tuned on that one.

But I know what you're thinking. What's my first ice cream flavor going to be?

Are you ready?


Don't knock it 'til you've tried it. And...don't try it. Yet. Because I want to try it first. So there.

-The GLS

Saturday, June 19, 2010


I might need a new category here on this blog, namely "Inheritances of Gutsiness", because of all the things I seem to gather in my life. One such thing is the incredibly heavy but wonderful Kitchenaid mixer that my mom inherited from my Nana when she passed away. This thing weighs a ton, and I had never used a stand mixer before so I sort of left it alone for awhile. But last night I decided to use it.

Oh, baby.

I made my magical chocolate chip cookies. The ones that I make whenever I'm feeling blue, or happy, or angry, or contented. Basically, all the time. The ones whose recipe I quickly memorized. The ones that I made in an Irish hostel with unfamiliar ingredients, strangely-numbered appliances, and a skillet (don't wasn't great). The ones that people try to convince me to change. Add this, add that, take this away. My mom has the audacity to suggest WALNUTS every time I make them. But no. There are not many things in which I'm set firmly in my ways, but these cookies? These cookies are a mainstay. They stay the same because they have to. I need this sort of culinary stability in my life. That's why I'm so free to give the recipe away--YOU go ahead and change the recipe if you like. I'll be making them this way until the day I die (which will be soon, judging by the amount of butter this recipe calls for).

Rant over.

Anyhoo, I made these cookies last night. And I used...the Kitchenaid mixer. I didn't really think anything different would happen, you know? I use a hand mixer all the time, and I assumed the results would be the same.

Oh, baby. (Did I say that already?)

It was like...cookie dough flavored clay. Smooth, perfectly blended. The cookies were GORGEOUS. I have NEVER had such great luck with cookies! Sixteen of the prettiest cookies you ever saw. Granted, I kind of overdid them in the oven because I wasn't paying attention, but we can't blame the Kitchenaid for that. They were still gorgeous, and absolutely delicious.

So now, I may be stealing the Kitchenaid from my mom. Which is probably okay, because she doesn't use it much anyway. I'm even in the process of buying a way-cool attachment for it. I won't say until I've got it in my hot little hands, but stay tuned!

To end, a quote from my current read. It's called "Downwind From Nobody" by Joan Wells, written in the 70's and currently out of print (or so it appears). She and I are kindred spirits, I think:

"Creatures, human and of higher order, need room. Room with clean, green-nourished air to see through, crystal air, smelling of leaves and wind's cargo, air you can sniff with your eyes shut and define its season. A swathe of air up to the sky, and a sweep of sky to get giddy under, uncluttered for sunset and moonrise by any invention."

Mmmm. On that note, tea and goodnight.

-The GLS

Friday, June 18, 2010

Tom Hulce... awesome. In a late 80's sort of way.

I just watched Parenthood. It was okay. Not my favorite movie of all time, but it had its moments. A little funny, a little sad, a little sexually awkward (especially with one's parents in the room). And Tom Hulce. Who will forever be in my heart, thanks to Amadeus and Stranger Than Fiction.

I'm going to go spin "Mirage" by Fleetwood Mac on the ol' turntable, sit back, and enjoy the last hour of this here Friday.

Come to me, Weekend.

-The GLS
(PS: If you look at Tom Hulce's name long enough, it starts to look REALLY weird...)

Thursday, June 17, 2010


Rawr. Seriously. I used to hate change, but I actually think I may be starting a reconciliation with it. I mean, this is the summer for change.

Granted, I still live in the same place, and work at the same job, and go to the same church, but the reality is that I'm making a lot of changes this summer that would make even Bowie proud (and that's SAYING something).

For instance, heading toward better health. Watching what I eat, and *gasp* counting calories? And not because I feel I have to, but because I WANT to. It's GOOD for me, and it actually adds to my enjoyment of food and friends because I'm not feeling so guilty about my eating habits anymore! Plus, getting more involved in physical exercise. Yoga, running around with the kids in the afternoons, taking the stairs instead of the elevator. That crazy stuff I used to avoid.

And tonight, I finally stepped through the door of a community group (for the uninitiated: kind of like a Bible study) for the first time in FIVE YEARS of attending Mars Hill. And it was FANTASTIC. I mean, better than that. A small group of awesome young women, all of them imperfect but hilarious and ready to discuss and dive in deeper, all of them ready to hear and discern the truth. Seriously, it was awesome.

The only downside? I have to admit that my parents have been right all along. This is difficult. I am stubborn. But I'll come around.'s time I learned to enjoy life and be a more well-rounded person, and what better time than summer?

Busy day. Full day. Fantastic day.

-The GLS

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Could We Have Kippers For Breakfast?

You may have to forgive me. I'm in auditory rapture right now; I found Supertramp's "Breakfast In America" album on vinyl today (for freakin' $1.98!), and it's spinning nearby, Yeah, just, wow.

My parents are really tickled by my newfound love of vinyl, and I really can't explain the appeal to anyone else. Is it the crackly undertone to all the songs? Nah, it has to be more than that.

Maybe it's the interactivity of moving the needle onto the record surface? The feel of pulling it carefully out of the cardboard cover, then the paper sleeve, and easing it onto the phonograph? The feeling that the band JUST recorded this straight onto vinyl and handed it to me, and only to me? The click of the spindle when it reaches the end of the grooves and slides back across to rest until I turn the record over? The second-hand nature of the albums, that they've traveled through time and space and many other living rooms to reach my hands, my room, and my phonograph? Or maybe it's just the faces staring back from album covers, famous (but not always glamorous) faces that form a sort of history, a musical foundation, a way to be recognized?

Yeah, maybe it's all of that.

But's probably just the crackly-ness. I can't handle how COOL it sounds...

-The GLS

Tuesday, June 15, 2010

You're Lookin' At Country.

It's officially happening. After years of wondering what--if anything--I would ever come to collect, I have finally become the proud (but slightly sheepish) collector of lots of random stuff. You know, like LPs, copper kitchen tins, pennywhistles, and knitting needles.

But also? Hurricane lamps.

Granted, I inherited my first one. It was my great-grandmother's, and it's really pretty, but it has a big crack in the glass fuel tank and therefore isn't safe to use. But I was somewhat hooked on the idea of kerosene lamps from setting that one on my desk and just staring at it. Without lighting it, my mom also taught me how to use a kerosene lamp by demonstrating on this one. Moving the wick up and down, adjusting the glass chimney. Stuff like that.

My next one was a little red thing I bought at an antique store. It's not an antique. At all, actually. But it looks like one, and the tank and stand are red glass, and it's so cute and little and it works quite well! It's ALSO sitting on my desk, on a stack of old books. I use it occasionally, when I'm feeling nostalgic for a time I wasn't even alive for.

Today, I inherited another one. It's huge. And green. And it was my mom's. And I'm kind of in love with it. But I can't light it until I've cleaned it out first. It still has kerosene from the 70's swimming around in it. Weekend project, maybe?

Seriously, someday my house is going to be full of kerosene lamps, inside and out. On the kitchen table, out on the porch, lining the stairs. Everywhere.

Yeah, some people collect candles. I collect kerosene lamps. Why not?

Tonight's movie: Coal Miner's Daughter, the biopic about Loretta Lynn starring Sissy Spacek. I've always liked Loretta Lynn. I'm not really a fan of country music, but one has to respect the classics, and Loretta Lynn is a classic. Besides, she was on the Muppet Show twice and when I was a kid that meant she was on the a-list. The movie was very well done, and Sissy Spacek was thoroughly un-creepy (I've always been scared of her since "Carrie"), and Tommy Lee Jones was actually...kind of handsome? Really? Yeah, I know!

I'm off to go light a kerosene lamp and do a little strummin' and singin'. And droppin' my g's everywhere, apparently...

-The (G)LS
PS: See what I did up there? Dropped g? Yeah...yeah, I'm hilarious...

Monday, June 14, 2010

Pretzel M&Ms.

No, seriously. Pretzel M&Ms exist. And they're...worth 89 cents? I don't know. They weren't necessarily fantastic. How's that for a glowing review?

But HERE'S a glowing review: ABOUT SCHMIDT starring Jack Nicholson. Quirky, sad, stark, and wonderful. GREAT film. Not for everyone, but a very honest look at what a life well lived might look like. Scared of growing old? Might want to skip this one. It'll make you run screaming for the hills. Also: please do not view if you are frightened of the prospect of a nude Kathy Bates. I don't know about you, but that last idea almost frightened me out of giving the film a go. But it's okay. It's only for a half-second.

In other news, I just dragged my old camp journal out of mothballs. I figure it's about time to look it over. Two summers worth of camp memories are in it, and I thought maybe I'd add this summer too, even though I'm not at camp. No sense letting good paper go to waste! And just because I'm not at camp, doesn't mean I can't do a little journaling. We'll see how that goes.

You'll have to excuse me. I've got a lot of catching up to do, journaling wise...

-The GLS

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Oatmeal On My Face... opposed to IN my face, which is where I usually prefer it.

But yes, I spent a gutsy weekend slathering my face with oatmeal/banana/honey facial stuff, singing on the back deck of one of the prettiest spots at camp, hiking up and down hills in 80 degree heat looking for a tea party, and oh so much more!

Don't you wish you were at camp? Right now?

Is having oatmeal on your face the same as having egg on your face, metaphorically speaking? If so, then cover me with oatmeal again, because I keep on embarassing myself.

And that's okay. That's kind of part of being human. I just wish it didn't happen so dang often. It gets a little out of control. Pretty soon I've got oatmeal dribbling down my chin and onto my cleanest shirt, where it stays like sweet-smelling glue. And the oatmeal doesn't stop there. Spreads to my hair, slops onto my toes, tries to find its way into my nostrils.

Not a pretty picture, is it?

I wish I could go back in time--back to when I had something very precious to me--and stop myself before I dropped it on the floor. I wish I could do that. I really do. And I don't know if things would turn out better if I had caught it. Probably not. But at least it would have been different. And maybe different is good.

I don't know. Live life with no regrets, right? It's harder than it sounds. But I'll gutsily strive foreward, realizing that going back to catch something precious would completely defeat the purpose of life itself (as mistakes are sort of part of the story). I'll gladly take the oatmeal in the face again, I guess. Seeing as how it can't really be avoided.

Ah, well. Perhaps if it shattered so well when it dropped, that precious thing wasn't really so precious after all.

-The GLS

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Boo Hoo Moo.

I'm heading to camp again this weekend, so please don't expect regular postings until Sunday!

Today, I wish I could say that my gutsiness involved forays into new knitting techniques, learning new songs, figuring out bigger and better recipes, or even painting my nails.

But today was really about priorities.

It was about hanging out with a group of four or five pre-K kids, sitting around a table eating goldfish crackers and laughing hysterically along to their favorite book-on-CD. It was about linking hands in a chain so none of them would have to be first or last in line while we walked back from the gym.

When the summer ends and these kids go traipsing off to Kindergarten, I'm going to be sorry to see them go. And I don't mind admitting it. I may even cry, big fat unsightly tears. Because these kids have grown SO MUCH, and they're going to continue to grow SO MUCH, and they're going to feel the things I've felt and love people and dislike people and do things they don't want to do and get traffic tickets and burn their cookies by accident and forget to put detergent in the washing machine and rescue/freak out about/stomp on spiders. They're going to try new things and figure out which things they like and which they don't like. They're going to have their hearts broken--really truly--and then mended again. They're going to make friends. They're going to lose friends. They're going to vote, or not vote, or forget to vote, or be the ones voted on. They're going to wonder about the Big Questions. They may even take Logic classes someday and go through the same ridiculous line of inquiry. Namely, "Why? Why the HECK do I even have to think about this?" They're going to get mad. Really, really mad. And then they'll calm down. They're going to buy houses, and clothes, and decide what to eat or not to eat, and calculate things like finances and mortgages and bills. They're going to communicate, and not always well. They're going to live, and not always well. And they'll learn. And they'll grow. And they'll have kids, and the cycle will start all over again.

But for now, those things feel very far away. Right now, it's about leaky dixie cups, colored pencils, and Superman puzzles. It's about Thing 1 and Thing 2 and the way they copy EVERYTHING the other one does, and it's about the very last child to be picked up who had a smudge of marker on the side of his head that made him look like a zombie. It's about puppies and headbands and the hilarity of the word "toilet". It's about smiles, especially the ones where teeth are missing. It's about hugs, especially ones that smell like sunscreen. And it's about words. Especially, "I love you."

You know. Just the small stuff.

-The GLS

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Braveheart Moment.

Is there anything better than being inside while the rain comes down in buckets outside, sitting on the front stoop watching the rain from a white plastic chair, wearing a cozy sweater and slippers? Is there anything better than pasta with red sauce, the new Star Trek movie, and a couch to curl up on?

Is there anything better than hitting "Submit" on your last final, sitting back, and realizing that you're done with school?

Don't answer that. I'll do it for you.

No, there's nothing better.

-The GLS


Tuesday, June 8, 2010

I Had A Dream...

(It occurs to me that my posts of late have been REALLY boring. I have hopes this will change after finals are over/school is done. Sorry about it.)

Early again, tonight. What's the deal?

Here's the deal. Both of my finals are tomorrow, and I'm strangely at peace about it, but that doesn't mean I'm not going to study frantically. At this point, however, there isn't much more I can do other than go over my notes, highlight my study guide, and pray. That last one is a biggie.

Furthermore, I have a tooth-cleaning at 7am, tomorrow morning. Was this my choice? Yeah. Was it a dumb one? Probably, but my alternative was to have it done July 1st, and who knows what sorts of things I'll want to be doing on July 1st? It'll be the middle of the summer!

In terms of gutsiness, I've been singing a silly little song all day. But it's great. It's called "Orange Sky" by Alexi Murdoch, and it's simple and beautiful and all-around terrific. Please go have a listen. KEXP = love.

Alright, friends. I'm off to study hard, eat a brownie, and do my yoga tonight (because there is NO WAY I'm going to try to squeeze a half-hour yoga set in before my 7am dentist appointment. No way, no how.)

-The GLS

Monday, June 7, 2010

A Penny Saved...

Well, I may need all the pennies I can get. Because my dear PowerBook G4 which has lasted FAR beyond its required lifespan and in all that time has performed above and beyond the call of starting to show its age.

Running hot, running LOUD, randomly freezing...all (apparently) signs of a hard drive starting to deteriorate. It's been a long time since the battery ever held a charge, and all of the things I like to run on the Internet are starting to pass me by, technology-wise.

So, I need to go. Because my dear computer--I have a feeling--is about to freeze up before I shut it down the nice way. Pray for me as I look into new machines/other alternatives and gulp at hurtful price-tags.

-The GLS

Sunday, June 6, 2010

You've Got To...

"...peel...bananas...peel peel bananas got to peel...bananas...peel peel bananas...!"

I have decided that I love Sunday night dinner. Because it's always odd.

Let me explain...

I don't go to church on Sunday mornings. This is not exactly because I'm not a morning person, but more because I prefer the 7pm service at my church. However, when I leave my house to GET to church (and, you know, get a parking place) it's around 6, because my church is not exactly nearby. This would place dinner at around 5:30pm. And at my house, we just don't do the early dinner thing very well.

So I usually stop by the grocery store to grab something for dinner on Sunday nights after church, because by the time I get home my parents are either already asleep or getting ready to be. This also means that I can't use the kitchen without disturbing them (we have a small house).

See what I have to work with?

Tonight's dinner is simple, but divine. For under $4, I was able to purchase a half-pint of milk, some instant oatmeal, and a banana. Filling, sweet, and delicious! And the only appliance required is my electric kettle (which represents probably the best money I ever spent).

As I finish my last bites of oatmeal, I WILL say that my latest gutsiness has been mostly studying and writing in nature. I cannot WAIT for finals to be over, and then I can be DONE with school! At least for awhile. :)

To anyone who is currently cramming for finals: good luck, and stay strong! To those who are already done with finals/graduated: Yeah, yeah, hush. To those who've never taken a final in their lives: boy, have YOU been missing out.

-The GLS

Saturday, June 5, 2010

Play Games, All Sorts.

Okay, so here's the thing. I'm a little frazzled, currently. I listened to a LOT of classic music on LP all day, because I went digging through my parents' old records. Seriously. There was Fleetwood Mac, Art Garfunkel, Johnny Cash, The Eagles, The Kinks, Lovin' Spoonful, and perhaps two or three more that I don't recall. Wow. Just, wow.

But it made studying go a lot easier.

I did ten or so odd pages of Study Guide for my Astronomy final on Wednesday. I still have two optional labs and who knows how much studying for Logic to do, but it's a start! And it took me all day. Who knew a non-comprehensive final could be so...comprehensive...?

To top it all off, I can't stop playing "Cath" by Death Cab for Cutie on my ukulele (it works surprisingly well!) and I'm just in an all-around jolly and weird mood. So please forgive.

I also feel another short story coming on...but I need a little help. I'm looking for famous male/female pairs from literary history. Not necessarily romantic, just famous. So far I have:

1. Mary Poppins & Bert
2. Scout & Jem Finch
3. Merlin & Nimue

...and that's it. I'm a little ashamed of myself.

Can you think of any?

I'd be most obliged.

And now, to go play "Cath" for the thirteenth time this evening. Please excuse me...

-The GLS

Friday, June 4, 2010

Archbishop of Canterbury...

I've been watching the UK Office. Blame Ricky Gervais' lunacy for the title of the post.

Tonight I'm allowing myself the freedom to relax, because this weekend I am going to be going crazy trying to finish up my final week of school for a long time. With two finals this coming Wednesday, this weekend is going to be a bit dry, but it'll be worth it to graduate with good grades and peace of mind.

Wishing all of you in similar (or crazier) circumstances all the best...

-The GLS

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Snowball Effect.

I'm sitting in the red glow of one red kerosene lamp and one red glassybaby (don't ask...I thought it was pretty), contemplating and sipping Russian Caravan tea. "Iris" by the Goo Goo Dolls just came on the iPod. How wonderful a song is that, after all these years? Honestly.

I was going to try out my very first small group for my church, tonight, but in the end I declined. And it was another one of those agonizing decisions where I was afraid of what other people might think of me for not attending.

And then I had to slap myself upside the head (not...literally...) and force myself to stop using the word "should". What I SHOULD do, where I SHOULD go, how I SHOULD feel. I get on my own nerves when I do that.

Thankfully, because I didn't attend, I was able to finish my last discussion board homework assignment for Logic class. So close to the end!

It was a good day, but tomorrow is Friday and therefore by default is going to be awesome.

Wishing you all the best tomorrow can offer.

-The GLS

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

John Turturro says...

I very nearly forgot to write this, tonight...

So, things are ramping up in order to die back down. My finals are next Wednesday, which means a lot of studying and stress is in order, of course. This weekend is going to be a maze of papers and books and studying. Which is good. It keeps me on my toes.

But what did I do, today, during an hour at the daycare's naptime? Did I begin the study process? Did I read a chapter? Did I mark up a study guide?

Of course not. I wrote a short story!

A very brief excerpt, for your reading pleasure:

No one in Goldgreen knows what became of Flyting Oleanane, the grocer’s daughter. There have been many theories, of course, as theories more so than children are the offspring of small towns. And when Flyting Oleanane disappeared, two dozen theories were born to take her place, which in a gossip’s arithmetic may very well come out even.

Still untitled, but I felt like sharing.

-The GLS
PS: The title of the post? Don't ask. I just feel like I've seen a lot of films with him in them, lately...

Tuesday, June 1, 2010


Around here (being the Pacific Northwest in these here United States of America), we have a little thing called rain. And though we all who are natives to this land have a love/hate relationship with rain, there are certain things we have come to expect about living in a place that remains so typically moist. Some things, it seems, are simply inevitable.

Head colds, for example.

Currently, my mum is a sufferer of the common cold, and when momma ain't happy, ain't nobody happy (or so goes the adage...which could probably do with a few less double negatives, my opinion be known).

Because she specifically asked me, I decided to come out of retirement and once again take up the mantle of assassin...killer of colds. My uniform? A blue and green flowery apron. My weapons? A medium-sized saucepan and a bamboo spoon. My ammunition? Garlic, chicken broth, cayenne pepper, more garlic, black pepper, a pinch of salt, olive oil, and more garlic.

Yes, indeed, it's Garlic Soup time, again.

Seriously, guys. When you have a cold, drop me a line. I'll either send you the recipe or (if you live close enough) a vat of soup in the mail (messy, but worth it?).

Heck, when I'm living in a place big enough to accomodate it, I'll just run an infirmary around winter/late spring. Come on over for garlic soup, toast, and Frasier reruns.

Frankly, right now I'm just trying to decide if I should light my kerosene lamp. Pretty, of course. Illuminating, certainly. Stinky? Yes, sadly.

To end, a brief excerpt from one of my short stories. You're welcome.

And if you looked to the sidewalk between these two buildings, you would find a garden. A splash of colors and faces, wings and jewels and waves and creatures that no human eye has ever seen. You would find abysses of darkness and clouds upon high, lofty towers of light in a distant welkin no angel has ever lived in. Fields of flowers that no breeze can move, silken arms of women no man’s finger could ever caress. Palaces of azure seeming to loom into the alley, though they never leave the ground. Beaches of pearls, dogs chasing rolling crowns, and a pair of lions so real you might take a step or two backward. There, in the place between old and new, would you find dreamscapes and rolling plains from an imagination that fills in the spaces in space itself.
-Excerpt from "The Courtship of the Blue-Eyed Widow"

A cheery goodnight...

-The GLS