What’s Making Me Happy 4/30/13

  • The first thing that is making me happy is the date!  I love that it’s the 1st of May tomorrow – all 1sts are great! – and I love that I have one more opportunity to plug Poetry Month! 
  • Poetry makes me happy!  Here’s a flowchart (courtesy of Book Riot) to help you choose one poem to read before May dawns a new month to celebrate.  I chose two poems from the list and copied them below:  

DEEPER

Dennis Lee
From:   unpublished, 1999.

Often at night, sometimes

out in the snow or going into the music, the hunch says,
“Deeper.”
I don’t know what it means.
Just, “Push it. Go further. Go deeper.”
And when they come talking at me I get
antsy at times, but mostly I stay put and it keeps saying,
“Deeper. This is not it. You must go deeper.”
There is danger in this, also
beautiful fingers and I believe it can issue in
gestures of concord; but I
cannot control it, all I know is one thing—
“Deeper. You must go further. You must go deeper.”
http://www.library.utoronto.ca/canpoetry/lee/poem3.htm

Dennis Lee’s works copyright © to the author.

I had a little nut-tree,

I had a little nut-tree,
Nothing would it bear.
I searched in all its branches,
But not a nut was there.

‘Oh, little tree,’ I begged,
‘Give me just a few.’
The little tree looked down at me
And whispered, ‘Nuts to you.’

Roald Dahl
  • I finished reading “The Accidental Tourist” by Ann Tyler.  I listened to about 2/3 of it and then after I finished my other book I picked it up and read to the end.  It is a great book!  The audio was painfully slow – I would count to 7 between sentences sometimes.  Just try listening to someone talk that way!  So I was glad to pick up the book and review it and power through to the end.  I look forward to seeing the movie and getting together with book club to discuss!  I think I may be a little bit of an Accidental Tourist… and can’t decide if it’s a good thing!  
  • I had the bonus weekend off last week and enjoyed the beautiful weather (baseball game! walks! playgrounds!) but still made it to two Rochester International Film Group Festival movies!
  • Saturday I saw “Caesar Must Die” (Italy), which is about inmates at a high security prison who put on a public performance of “Julius Caesar.”  Random thoughts: Even Italian prisoners at high security prison have fashion sense; it was powerful seeing prisoners memorizing Shakespeare in their solitary cells; it was even more powerful seeing the prisoners return to their solitary cells after their beautiful performance.  Good stuff.
  • Sunday I saw “A Royal Affair” (Denmark), in which a young queen, marries an insane king, falls secretly in love with her physician – and together they start a revolution that changes a nation forever.  Random thoughts:  Beautiful people, those Danes; gloomy weather, that Denmark; beautiful dresses and corrupt government; sad story with hopeful ending, foreshadowed during a conversation about the purpose of working for change today when you may not live to see it, but realizing that we hope for a better world for the future.  I cried.
  • Tomorrow is May Day, a fun memory from childhood!  Doubt I’ll see any May Baskets on my door tomorrow, but if I do I’ll be home to chase the givers!  Day off!  Woot!  Gonna spend it cleaning madly and then get a haircut!  Maybe other fun stuff will be thrown in there, but although the weather may still threaten winter, I’m going to clean like it’s spring!
  • And tomorrow “Silver Linings Playbook” on DVD and ‘Helen the Second Wife” by Lian Dolan should arrive from amazon.com!  Yay!  Woot!

So that’s it for tonight … so much to be happy about.  

How about you?  

What’s making you happy??

What poem will you be reading in the wee hours before May brings new celebrations?  

Of a Weekend…

Ah… Days off with nothing firm scheduled are the best!  I went out with work colleagues for a late dinner, watched a niece play volleyball, drank coffee in the sunshine (a rare and welcome sight!), shopped and bought TWO pairs of shoes, got a pedicure, cuddled on my couch with my nephew and watched “Wreck It Ralph,” bought gifts for babies and birthdays, caught up on some TV watching, and watched “Gone With the Wind.”  And more days off tomorrow and Wednesday!

What’s Making Me Happy: 

Cover of "Gone with the Wind"
Cover of Gone with the Wind
  • I finished “Gone With the Wind” and am so glad I read it!  It is an epic novel, ‘The Great American Novel,” and it is really worth the read.  Watched the movie this weekend, in two sittings.  It is a magnificent movie, and at 4-hours it is merely a condensed version of the story.  It follows the story greatly, but the story is so much richer in the novel.  Ah, Scarlet.  Ah, Rhett.  Love them both!  After reading the Margaret Mitchell book, I really want to read the “sequels” that were written by others.  I didn’t expect that to happen!  
  • I am also excited that I finished that 960 page book so that I can finally move on to my TBR pile!  I’ve been listening to an audio for book club (“The Accidental Tourist” – slowest narrator EVER!), but I am excited to dive into some others.  Ah, books.  Good stuff.  
  • I still haven’t committed to my 3rd Quarter of 11 Things yet… but I will start that list here tonight, as almost 1/3 of that quarter is gone! Ha!
  • Everytime I get an update of the blog Des Hommes et des Chatons, I smile. Good stuff!  You MUST check it out!  Sexy men and kittens – how can it be anything but happy-making?  Go, NOW!

    hot men cats models poses
    http://deshommesetdeschatons.tumblr.com/
    CLICK IT! This is NOT a good example of the sexy!
  • THREE WEEKENDS IN A ROW OFF!  This weekend, next, and the weekend after!  Wowza!  I may get used to that!
  • The Rochester International Film Festival starts Friday night, so I’m looking forward to movies Saturday and Sunday – my weekend to work, but my “bye” weekend!  Woot!

This week has been filled with bad news and frustrating media… I’m thankful for friends who choose to share the good and to remain hopeful and positive.  It is easy to get sucked into it, for sure, but I do my best to “feed my head” with positive strategies and good news.

With that, here is my list of Things to look forward to or do in my April, May and June!

11 Things: 3rd Quarter

  1. Book Club – LOVE talking about books, whenever and wherever!  April 2 – with rum & Cokes, pizza burgers, and Mississippi Mud Cake!  Will schedule another before the end of May!
  2. Cosmo Girls – April brought green smoothies, chair massages, and henna!  May will bring A Cosmo Girl Party to celebrate another year of fun!
  3. A Spring Break facial – and pedicure!
  4. Baseball games and softball games – hopefully in sunshine!
  5. THE GREAT GATSBY movie!  Cannot wait!!! Maybe a party before? Group outing?
  6. Marissa’s graduation in May with a party to celebrate her Bachelor’s in Biology!  Taran’s graduation in June!
  7. Take Note! spring concert – most likely in June!
  8. New walking shoes – so hopefully many walks!
  9. Catch up on the TBR pile – as many as possible!  #1 Silver Linings Playbook!  
  10. June will bring Thursdays on First and Rochesterfest – outdoor food, music and fun!  And hopefully sunshine!  (Can you tell we’ve been without for too long?) 
  11. Strike up a conversation with a stranger (NOT a patient!) weekly (?) and WRITE about it!  Woot!  

Have anything you think I should replace with something?  What are you looking forward to in the upcoming spring months?

What’s Making Me Happy 4/16/13

Ah, a day off with little sleep.  Hopefully tonight I will sleep soundly, waking refreshed for a long work day!

But here’s what’s making me happy:

  • Getting through overnights at work is always good… another month until it happens again!  
  • I finished “Gone with the Wind” last night!  Woot!  It was a great book, unfortunately I didn’t have a lot of endurance with it, so I read it in shorter spurts than I would have liked.  But I can’t wait to discuss it with others who have read it and to revisit the movie.  So much to talk about!  Scarlett’s coping skill of “thinking of it tomorrow” is something I have employed… sometimes things are just so hard to face that you have to divert attention elsewhere and move forward with plans tomorrow.  It is spoken so often in the book… and it is the final sentence of the book:  “After all, tomorrow is another day.”  I’m so glad I read it.

    Gone with the Wind cover
    Gone with the Wind cover (Photo credit: Wikipedia)
  • Book club with the Preston gals was a lot of fun.  We read a great book (“We are all Welcome Here” by Elizabeth Berg) and had great food – rum and Cokes, pizza burgers, cheesy potatoes, and Mississippi Mud Cake.  Yummy!  Always good to see those women!
  • Met girls from work for dinner on a Friday night!  It was good to get together outside of work and to get to know them better.  Hopefully it’s something we can do again and again!  We celebrated having a Friday off before a weekend off!  Doesn’t always happen!  Maybe this Friday we will have a happy hour after we have supervision from 6-8pm!  🙂
  • I had a terrible cold during my weekend off, but enjoyed movies and reading… not a bad way to spend a weekend off!
  • Singing is always good… love the songs we’re singing in choir!  Some river songs, medley style (“Old Black Water,” “Swanee River,” “The Old Folks at Home,” “Mood River” and more!) and some Irish songs (yay!) and “Let’s Call the Whole Thing Off.”  Love it.
  • Had some good days off last week before my weekend overnight work.  Good meals out, good cooking at home, good movie in the theatre (“Admissions”) and hanging out with Marissa.  Good stuff.
  • A great post-tax-day out with Beth today – delicious breakfast at Burdey’s in Peterson (cinnamon roll pancakes – so good!) followed by shopping and fro-yo!  Good stuff.

And coming up:

  • 3 days of work ahead and a weekend off.  No big plans (yet!), but just glad to have a Saturday, Sunday, Monday off!  
  • Hanging out with the kids a little as Dana and  Koni jet off to Vegas!  
  • Starting in on my pile of TBR books – #1 is The Silver Linings Playbook!  Yay!  DVD comes out 4/30, so that’s something I”m looking forward to! Also have 2 book club books going – “The Accidental Tourist” by Anne Tyler and “Sick Girl” by Amy Silverstein (for work).  Good stuff!  I’m listening to the audio of “The Accidental Tourist” and I think it’s read by the slowest narrator in the history of narrators.  Goodness.  But it’s a good book!
    The Accidental Tourist
    The Accidental Tourist (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

     

  • Planning a small graduation party for Marissa is fun… it sure is something to celebrate!
  • Have so many good shows to catch up on – so glad I still have my DVR!  I’ll catch up with them sometime – so no Mad Men or Smash spoilers!

What is making you happy this week?

The 4.11

Wine Wednesday - wacky!
Wine Wednesday – wacky!

So what’s the 411?
Does anyone say that anymore?  Does anyone call information anymore?

What info can I give you today…

  • Musinex is my friend!  I think that it has helped me feel better faster.  Crazy, eh?  
  • I work overnights this weekend so I’m in self-indulgent mode – gonna stay in  my pajamas as long as possible on Friday!
  • I enjoyed my days off and had some adventures with Marissa!
  • Watched “Admissions” on free-popcorn Wednesday.  It was pleasantly unpredictable, although the girl does end up with the guy in the end. Just a little surprising in how they got there!
  • Still plugging away on “Gone With The Wind.”  Loving it and amazed at her writing… just wish I had more reading stamina!  Hopefully I’ll binge on it tomorrow and make a big dent.
  • Have TWO “book club in a bag” sets – one for the old FC girls and one for work!  Yay!  So in the next few weeks I will be reading “The Accidental Tourist” by Anne Tyler (love her books!) and “Sick Girl” by Amy Silverstein.  Just added two more books to my already towering TBR pile!  Oh well!
  • Cosmo Girls tonight was another great time – green smoothies, do-it-yourself-henna, and chair massages.  And of course, many laughs!  Yay!
  • I will finalize my spring quarter list this weekend – we’re marching through April!
  • SOOOO looking forward to “The Great Gatsby” movie coming out!  I can’t wait!

Finally, this photo booth was just too much fun today!  Once the photos are taken, they replayed the video of you taking all the pictures!  And look at my hair!  It’s always so unpredictable… quite a flip I’ve got going on!  We laughed so hard… lots of laughs today.  🙂

25 photo booths
Paparazzi Photo Booth!

What’s the 411 with you?

 

 

 

 

 

Snapshot of a Sunday 4/7/13

Frankie and Johnny (1991 film)
Frankie and Johnny (1991 film) (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

I am thankful that I didn’t make a lot of plans for my weekend off.  I was so looking forward to having three days in a row off – Friday, Saturday AND Sunday! So when I woke Thursday morning feeling a little stuffy and scratchy and sniffly, I hoped it wasn’t true.  I bought salt refills for my Neti pot and hoped for the best.

Friday was a busy and fun-filled day, even though I was sneezing and sniffly all day and a true mess by 10:00 PM.  I went to PT (very little knee pain anymore!), got a relaxing facial leaving me looking positively dewy, and then went to happy hour for a Perfect Margarita followed by dinner at Whistle Binkies on the Lake with co-workers.  That is a good day off. 🙂  But I do apologize for being all sniffly at the end of the night – no one wants to be around that!

Yesterday brought a 4.5 hour work meeting on my day off.  It was fine, although, again I apologized to all for being all sniffly at the end of the meeting! Then I was on the couch, finally watching “The Intouchables” on DVD (yay! just as good the second time!) and then going to Zorba’s for a Greek dinner with Jennifer!  Flaming cheese and souvlaki – yummy!  And the soup… delicious!   Last night was the new episode of Smash on Saturday night!  It was fun to watch.  Oh, that scamp Jimmy.  It’s so predictable, but good fun.

Today I’ve been lying on the couch, watching movies, eating soup, and drinking water and a pot of hot tea.  Tomorrow will be better.  Right?

Cover of "Frankie & Johnny"
Cover of Frankie & Johnny

But in the mean time, Netflix has been keeping me company.  For some reason I have an itch to watch some old Al Pacino movies.  So I put “Scent of a Woman” at the top of my DVD queue and today watched “Frankie and Johnny” on Netflix Instant.  Good stuff!  Loved the movie in 1991 and love it still today!  Last week I recorded “Valley Girl” at mom and dad’s, and really think that I need to add that DVD to my collection!  Such a great movie… ah, Nic Cage before his fake-y teeth.  So dreamy. 🙂

Looking forward to:

  • Mad Men season starting tonight!
  • Cosmo Girls this Thursday – some fun adventures will be had!
  • Finishing “Gone with the Wind” – I’m over 600 pages!  It will happen!
  • and having this cold behind me!

Hope you have had a fun Sunday!

What’s Making Me Happy (First of April 2013!)

1st April 2013, Easter Monday, April Fool's Da...
1st April 2013, Easter Monday, April Fool’s Day P1710412 (Photo credit: tomylees)

Happy April!  Happy April Fool’s Day!

 

 

 

I’ve always loved the 1st of a new month and I feel great affinity with April 1st, as it’s my half birthday!
(Really, who celebrates such a thing? I guess I do! )  
April is kind of the yin to my yang or something.  

 

 

April is also National Poetry Month and Autism Awareness Month, among other wacky holidays (National Welding Month? International Guitar Month?). I’m always looking for a reason to celebrate, so websites like Holiday Insights  are great places to find inspiration.  (e.g. 3rd Thursday in April (4/18) = National High Five Day, April 23 = Take a Chance Day, April 30 = Hairstyle Appreciation Day.)

 

 

It’s been a great start to April, so I’ll start the month with a list of what’s been making me happy lately!

 

 

Movies States
The United States of Movies
  • This is a fun new poster I have added to my walls.  I haven’t seen all the films (haven’t even heard of some of them!  SLC Punks?  Who knew?) but maybe that will be a goal sometime!  If not, it’s fun to look at and think about and a conversation piece.  
vodka stroganoff beets vodka
Anna Karenina celebratory meal
  • Had a few Walkie Talkies over for dinner and a movie!  The movie was the new Anna Karenina and before the movie we had vodka, beef stroganoff, yummy bread and brie, and pickled beets.  After the meal we had vodka and white Russian cupcakes.  The movie was engrossing and fast-moving and fun to watch!  Very cleverly done!  I can’t wait to watch it again!  
Keep Calm Chivery
Keep Calm and…
  • I saw this as I was browsing in B&N and thought it was pretty hilarious!  Love the Keep Calm stuff.  Love this even more.  
Pedis with the girls pedicure pampering spa
Pedis with the girls
  • Any day off is a good day off.  A day off spent with friends and family is the best day off ever!  Lots of times other people have to work on my days off (and vice versa) so I’m happy that it’s spring break this week!  
  • Today I also went to Macy’s because I won a door prize that I signed up for last week!  So I have two full-sized bottles of some perfumes I’ve never heard of before!  Good times!
  • And also today my mom decided we would celebrate opening day of baseball season with hotdogs, potato salad and ice cream while watching the Twins on TV!  Good stuff.  Mom loves a theme, too!
Easter Chicks
Easter Chicks (Photo credit: Flying Pig Party Productions)
  • I worked on Easter weekend but enjoyed the time spent with my fellow “Easter chicks,” as we dubbed ourselves.  We had some cookies, which looked like these above, and lots of jelly beans.
  • I am over HALF WAY DONE with Gone with the Wind!  Yay me!  I am more than 500 pages into this book of about 960 pages.  Ah.  Still enjoying it and can’t wait to have another dinner and a movie night!
  • I’m looking forward to book club tomorrow night – gonna make Mississippi Mud cake to celebrate!  Also bringing little Cokes in glass bottles and someone else is bringing the rum (relevant to the book!).  Always a good time.
  • I’m looking forward to a WEEKEND OFF!  Friday, Saturday AND Sunday!  Woot!  No big plans and a 4 hour meeting for work on Saturday, but excited, nonethless!
  • I’m looking forward to making my list of 44 Things:Q3!  I haven’t started yet, but will work on it this week.

In honor of National Poetry Month, here is my favorite poem about April.  I’ve shared it on my blog in another April post (2011, I believe).  I memorized it in high school and it still comes to mind when I think of springtime and April.  I would LOVE to know your favorite poems!  Send them my way!  

 

 

APRIL by Marcia Masters
It’s lemonade, it’s lemonade, it’s daisy.
It’s a roller-skating, scissor-grinding day;
It’s gingham-waisted, chocolate flavored, lazy,
With the children flower-scattered at their play.

 

It’s the sun like watermelon,
And the sidewalks overlaid
With a glaze of yellow yellow
Like a jar of marmalade.

 

It’s the mower gently mowing,
And the stars like startled glass,
While the mower keeps on going
Through a waterfall of grass.

 

Then the rich magenta evening
Like a sauce upon the walk,
And the porches softly swinging
With a hammockful of talk.

 

It’s the hobo at the corner
With his lilac-sniffing gait,
And the shy departing thunder
Of the fast departing skate.

 

It’s lemonade, it’s lemonade, it’s April!
A water sprinkler, puddle winking time,
When a boy who peddles slowly, with a smile remote and holy,
Sells you April chocolate flavored for a dime.