Saturday, February 18, 2012

Almost 26.2

I am turning 40 this year. I'm not particularly stressed by that number, but it is a milestone birthday. Last year, I declared (foolishly) that I would run a full narathon this year, before the big 4-0. However, with age comes wisdom and realistically, I do not have the time required to train for a full marathon.

I do have time to run two 1/2 marathons... on back to back weekends... which will then add up to 26.2 miles in 6 days. So much for that wisdom stuff, huh? And yet, I think this is a brilliant plan. The Lincoln 1/2 marathon takes place on the first Sunday in May, and I'm already signed up. Six short days later, my favorite trails will host a 1/2 marathon and, while I haven't signed up yet, I will be handing over my cash next week.

This is going to be fun And painful. But mostly fun. =)

Friday, February 17, 2012

Feeling Crafty

The work craziness is almost over, thank goodness, and as is often the case when I've been buried by writing and editing and such, I had the urge to do something completely unrelated to work. This 'something' generally must be a huge project that I will never in a million years actually finish.

I toyed with the idea of a Doctor Who scarf... and I'm still somewhat tempted... but since I just started knitting over Christmas, I'm thinking I should finish my first project (also a scarf) first without starting a project that should, by rights, reach well over 10 feet in length upon completion. The minor details trip me up every time.

Then I thought about this absolutely freakin' amazing dollhouse project, but my kiddos actually have a dollhouse AND a Barbie house so I decided against it. Plus, I think the furniture folding part looks hard, and I am scared of venturing too far into the scrapbooking world because there lies the way to madness. And spending a lot of money.

So, I went back to my roots. I decided to make a quilt. I rummaged around in the basement until I found a project for which supplies had been purchased and then abandoned. I gathered my tools and cleared everything off the kitchen counters.

After a couple of hours, I had a stack of six inch squares. After rearranging a few times, I hit upon a simple pattern that was pleasing to the eye.

After a few more hours of sewing, all of the rows had come together with corners (more or less) matching. I still need to purchase fabric for the borders, which I'm hoping to do tomorrow. Then I can wrap this project up and send it off to the quilter. Miss A is very excited about having a new quilt to snuggle under, and pink is her very favorite color. I'm excited because it seems very possible that this will be one project I actually complete within a reasonable amount of time. Win/win for everyone!

(Heh. When typing win/win, my fingers automatically typed wine/wine...)

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Reading The Weird Sisters

The cool thing, I think, about a book club is that you read books that you might never have picked up on your own. If my reading material was always left to my own selection, I'd choose the same cozy mysteries, history texts and occasional psychological thrillers over and over again.

This month, the BlogHer Book Club selection was The Weird Sisters, a New York Times bestseller by Eleanor Brown. Left to my own devices, I would be suspicious of a book with this many glowing reviews, described with words like delightful, hilarious, winsome and poignant. How can something be both hilarious and poignant? And if it somehow manages that delicate balancing act, then surely I'll cry my way through the entire thing, a la Fried Green Tomatoes. Nope, this is definitely not a book I would have picked up on my own, and man, would I have missed out.

Three sisters, raised by a college professor who quotes Shakespeare to describe life events and a mother who's fight against breast cancer provides the perfect excuse for the sisters to move home. All in their 30s, all confused by the places in which they've found their lives and all resenting the security that home and family provides. The book is written in first person, with the narration switching from sister to sister. It should be disorienting, but it's not. It's charming, and the voice sweeps you into the middle of the family until you become as involved in their lives as the sisters are.

I think, for me, the charm lies entirely in the writing. The sisters are from a family who reads as casually and voraciously as some people eat popcorn at the theatre. Therefore, when one of the sisters finds herself dating a man who doesn't read, the result is foregone:

Because despite his money and his looks and all the good-on-paper attributes he possessed, he was not a reader, and, well, let's just say that is the sort of nonsense up with which we will not put.

I'm looking forward to the discussions at BlogHer over the next few weeks! If you want to find out more about The Weird Sisters, check out the discussion page at BlogHer Book Club.

This was a paid review for BlogHer Book Club but the opinions expressed are my own.