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The worst NaBloPoMo entry of the month is right here.

November 29th, 2015 · 3 Comments · Daily

If it wasn’t NaBloPoMo, today would be one of those days that I would stay far away from Fluid Pudding.

I have nothing to report.

We went to church this morning, and someone complimented my fingerless gloves and mentioned that he has always wanted a pair, but he can’t find them in his size. I immediately made a mental note to knit some fingerless gloves for him.

After church, the girls went down to my parents’ house to help them decorate for Christmas. Jeff and I had lunch and then I worked on freelance for a few hours.

We picked the girls up, ate dinner, and now we’re home. 7:03. I’m yawning like someone who yawns a lot, but this is my B12 week so I’m about to turn right onto Open Eye Boulevard.

I smell like a Christmas tree, and in a few weeks I’ll smell like a lemon.

One year ago today I took a nap with Ramona Quimby, and I had no idea that she would be gone in less than two weeks.


Tomorrow is the final day of NaBloPoMo, and I promise to do better.

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In my world, Virginia Pasley picks up where Virginia Pasley left off.

November 28th, 2015 · 1 Comment · Daily

Virginia Pasley died after suffering a stroke in 1986 at the age of 80.

After graduating from Northwestern University, she took a job in 1927 as a reporter for the Chicago Herald & Examiner before moving on to The Tribune as part of their first metropolitan staff. In 1932, she scored an exclusive interview with Al Capone in Cook County Jail before he was sent to the penitentiary in Atlanta. When she and her husband moved to Washington, she had the special assignment of covering Eleanor Roosevelt.

In 1955, she wrote 21 Stayed: The Story of the American GIs Who Chose Communist China: Who They Were and Why They Stayed about the 21 American POWs who decided to stay in their capturing country when the Korean War ended.

In 1949, she wrote this:

My mom gave it to us yesterday, and Harper was inspired this morning to bake Mrs. Pasley’s Chocolate Drop Cookies.

Clearly, I am not a food photographer. The cookies were so much more delicious than they look in that photo.

I hereby salute all journalists named Virginia Pasley— both past and present.

I love that when I searched out information on Mrs. Pasley’s cookbook I came across a great article on campus racism written recently by a fellow Mizzou graduate named Virginia Pasley. Serendipity.

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Thanksgiving is over.

November 27th, 2015 · 3 Comments · Daily

I’ll be over here doing what I do.
With a wreath on my head.


Feel free to do what you do, too.
It’s time.

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A little bad taste is like a nice dash of paprika, Ms. Parker.

November 26th, 2015 · 3 Comments · Daily


Salad and spoonfuls (I prefer spoonsful, but the world has passed me by) of green bean casserole, corn bread stuffing, sweet potato casserole, and Brussels sprouts, all eaten before I noticed that a bit of the red leaf lettuce wasn’t actually lettuce, but a woman smoking a long cigarette in a turban.


(I think it’s Dorothy Parker. I’ve always wanted to have lunch with her.)

If you celebrated Thanksgiving today, I hope it was a nice one. If you didn’t, I hope your Thursday was particularly good.

Harper spent the morning creating personalized turkeys to represent each of our guests. Mine has knitting needles coming out of her head.


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The Day Before

November 25th, 2015 · 3 Comments · Daily

The pies are out of the oven.


My mom and the girls are currently decorating the table.


I found my tiny bundt thinger dinger for mini pumpkin cakes.


There’s not much else to report for today. I’m currently freezing pre-cut lemon cranberry scones, and the plan is to bake them for breakfast in the morning. I scheduled my mammogram for January. I’m feeling thankful, but this year it’s with a bit of a raised eyebrow and a candle lit for everyone who is missing someone at their table.

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6,574 Days.

November 24th, 2015 · 6 Comments · Daily

On the evening of Sunday, November 23, 1997, I went over to Jeff’s apartment to watch a movie. I ended up crashing on his futon with the plan of heading back to my apartment at 6:00 the next morning to get ready for work.

Upon returning to my apartment that next morning, I picked up a message from my mom telling me that my sister had gone into labor six weeks early. Mom and Dad were jumping into the car to make the four hour drive to my sister’s town, and they were going to stop by my apartment so I could ride with them.

As I listened to the message, the phone rang again. It was my mom telling me that they were less than ten minutes away.

I immediately freaked out (and am still freaking out 18 years later) because had Jen gone into labor fifteen minutes earlier, my parents would have arrived to find my apartment empty. I didn’t have a cell phone! They didn’t have Jeff’s number! Hell! In a handbasket!

I took a Tom Cruise shower, threw on clothes, and ran out to the street to meet my folks. Nearly seven hours later my nephew was born, and although he was wee (cuter than a spider monkey, but similar in size), he was able to lift his head and turn it to watch the nurses pass by his little bed. He was amazing, and he scared the crap out of me (as most babies did before I had my own).

Justin is 18 today and he is funny and smart and thoughtful and kind. If you had to go to the store and pick out an 18 year old, he would definitely be one of your top choices. He’s an Oreo in a sea of Hydrox, and he’s now able to vote.

1997 was a crazy year. Mother Teresa died, Notorious B.I.G. died, Princess Diana died, Mike Tyson bit off Evander Holyfield’s ear, OJ Simpson was found guilty, the Heaven’s Gate folks put on their Nikes, and I became an aunt.

Dauphin Island, August 8, 1999

(Three days after Justin was born, the Barney float got away from its handlers during the Macy’s Thanksgiving Parade. Barney had to be stabbed multiple times so that he wouldn’t fly away. It was (and continues to be) one of my very favorite Macy’s parades.)

Happy Birthday, Justin. I’m excited to see how the next 18 years unfold.

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My Cervix, Pumpkin Balls, and Thanksgiving!

November 23rd, 2015 · 19 Comments · Daily

This morning I went to my annual gynecological appointment where I was pleasantly reminded that if you don’t have a cervix, you don’t need a Pap smear! High five!

After a quick talk with my doctor about how 45 can really suck with the eyebrows falling out and the hair thinning and the tiredness and the fibroid cyst mumbo jumbo, I pulled my pants up and headed over to the closest grocery store where I purchased a pound of Honeycrisp apples for $1.99 and all of the supplies to make pumpkin balls because I’m ADDICTED to pumpkin balls. (I was afraid of Medjool dates until last week. Now they’re my best friends.)

I’ll tell you what we’re having on Thursday, and you tell me what we’re missing:
Lemon cranberry scones (They seem like a good idea.)
Corn bread dressing
Green bean casserole
Rolls or something or other
Mashed sweet potatoes
Mashed regular potatoes with some sort of gravy
Some sort of roasted vegetables or Brussels sprouts or something maybe
Big dinner salad
Cranberry salad (This was always my favorite until I threw it up a few years ago. Now I eat it responsibly.)
Pumpkin pie
Apple pie

(Yes, there will be turkey. I don’t want to talk about it.)

Meredith is convinced that we need appetizers. Do we? Maybe some sort of weird dip? What are you having that I should be having?

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I had a salad.

November 22nd, 2015 · 2 Comments · Daily

This morning we saw the second part of Mockingjay and then we were supposed to meet Jeff for pizza, but the pizza place didn’t open until 4:00 and no one was hungry anyway so I got cranky and sent the three of them home and then I went to the pet store for dog snacks and while I was there the veterinarian fainted and an ambulance came and because of the chaos, the guy at the register gave me 20% off of my dog treats.

Also, I watched a tiny puppy trying on a parka and all of my crankiness went away.

This afternoon we put together a huge clothing donation for a truck that will be at the house at 7:00 tomorrow morning.

This evening we went to the pizza place that didn’t open until 4:00.

I had a salad. (I mostly ignored the clumps of cheese, but went to town on the pine nuts. Pine Nut Town. It’s a town with zero age-related macular degeneration. High energy. Low heart disease.)


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Mizzou has to win tonight’s game.

November 21st, 2015 · 8 Comments · Daily

This evening at 5:45, we dropped Harper off at one of those bouncy places for a birthday party. From there, Jeff, Meredith, and I went out for dinner and to Barnes & Noble for their Vinyl Day celebration. (Meredith’s into vinyl these days.)

At 7:45, we picked Harper up and it occurred to me that I hadn’t yet stopped by Fluid Pudding.

That’s when I took this photo. (I was sitting in the dark car while Jeff went inside for Harp. I had gone inside the party location for the 5:45 drop off, and all of the moms and kids and rubber and pizza smells made me want to sit in the corner and eat my own hair. I couldn’t handle going back in for the chaos of finding coats and shoes. Plus, Meredith told me that she thinks people might not like me when I’m wearing my Bernie for President shirt, and I was wearing my Bernie for President shirt.)


In about ten minutes I’ll be kicking off a 4,000 step walk to keep my Fitbit happy and then I’ll be reading because my list of books to read is growing entirely too long and I’m just not reading enough these days.

Tomorrow? A morning movie, an afternoon pizza, and an evening of cleaning bathrooms. (After the bathrooms are clean, no one can use them until Thursday. I’m hosting Thanksgiving, and I’m not screwing around over here, people.)

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NaBloPoMo is almost over!

November 20th, 2015 · 3 Comments · Daily

Henry received a lavender bath last night and as a result, he now calms and freshens every room he enters. (I once attended an online essential oil party during which someone mentioned that lavender oil can help cure cancer. I immediately grabbed my virtual coat off of the virtual bed and left the party because I’ve known entirely too many people who have gone through chemo and radiation because of cancer, and here I sit with a ten dollar bottle of lavender oil that COULD HAVE FIXED EVERYTHING?! Hhhhhhhh. Just stop it.)


I was playing with my flex pen a few minutes ago and it exploded and I got ink all over my hands but instead of freaking out, I wrote down the best sentence I’ve read in the past week.


Sadly, after writing the sentence down, I realized that it should begin with “He’s dead NOW…” but you get the idea. I have so many sentences underlined in books and jotted down on paper and I think my next creative project will be to write my favorite sentences on 3×5 cards and frame them. (Marie-Helene Bertino is very quotable. Another one of my favorites is “Just because your mother is dead doesn’t give you the right to suck.”)

I hope your Friday evening is a good one.

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