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Sunday, November 23, 2008This Book
Seems like the last few months have not allowed time for rest, let alone time to pick up a book. But that's exactly what I've done.
I'm reading the sweetest book for anyone who is a dog-lover, like me. It's called Marley & Me by John Grogan. I know, I know: this book has been on the shelves for the last couple of years and I'm waaaay behind the times. They even filmed a movie which is due out this Christmas. Whatever. Life has been busy and I'm just now getting to it... Don't even ask me about Harry Potter. And those Twigh-tards can just F-OFF already (seriously, they're annoying and obnoxious as all hell. Just stop it already. When Blair and I go to the movie and you're lined up 4 HOURS BEFORE YOUR MOVIE STARTS, GET OUT OF THE WAY! And don't bring your book to the movie theater. That's just lame.).
What I love about the story of Marley is the sweet love and (seeming) innocence of man's-best-friend. In many ways, it brings me back to my childhood memories of my first dog - Samantha. Moreover, it makes me realize that The Destoyer that lives with me now (aka: Bailey) is akin to many other dogs out there... (Though, Bailey has awesome powers of ADORABILITY that set her above the rest.) This book has also inspired me to take a few more pictures of my precious beast.
Pets do amazing things for people. They remind us of what it means to be goofy; how feeling good can make you dance around without a care in the world; that when you "got to go," you really "got to go"; that paying attention can bring you reward; that playing in the grass is fun; that when you're scared, sidling up to mom make you feel better; that shoes are awesome; that there's always room in your heart for more love. I love having a dog in the house and I'm pretty sure that she's taught me valuable lessons in patience and parenting. So - if you're looking for a nice, simple, yet sweet read, I suggest learning more about Marley.
I wish I could gush more about my dog but Blair and I are headed out for a movie screening! We're going to see a preview screening of Frost/Nixon followed by a Q&A period with Frank Langella and Ron Howard!
Saturday, November 01, 2008Beauty
There are a number of things that I've taken for granted. There are other things that I've never paid enough attention to - positive things that happen every day. Maybe it's in the details of a knotted tree or in the beauty of a simple sunset. This week was full of days where I noticed more details and appreciated those things that make each day GOOD.
The first of these aforementioned things was the kindness and spirit of the place I where I work. The school went NUTS over Halloween with the decorations and candy. Each year, the school invites thousands of people from the local community to come trick-or-treat around campus. There were decorations on every tree, brush, schrub, window, and corner of the place! The school raised over 18,000 pounds of candy from donations to give away! We even had a contest for best-dressed office. My staff and students came together to decorate and collect candy (and other treats). (I fully expect that we will be announced the winners of best-dressed office on Monday!) I've never been so into the true spirit of a fun Halloween as this year.
Second was - my mom. She's beautiful. Since she and I have been trying to meet up more often, I've come to know my mom as more of a friend. We talk about life, love, work, family, holidays, what we did or are going to do on the weekends, etc. While sharing a bottle of wine with my mom this past Wednesday, I would watch her when she didn't know it. I was just totally struck at how wonderful and beautiful she is. I see more and more of myself in her - not just in appearance but in mannerisms, likes/dislikes, thoughts, and attitudes. I appreciate my mom for all that she is, where she comes from, and how graceful she moves through difficult situations. She's a true role model and I love her so very much.
Today, our house woke up to the sound of thunder. It was awesome. Bailey was barking, the cats were whining, and Blair and I sat in the dark - listening. Our bedroom lit up with awe inspiring flashes of light from the sky that bounced off the walls. The force of nature was striking outside and all I could think of was how lucky I was to be here, in this place, in this moment, taking it in and appreciating it for its simple complexity.
I see myself growing older everyday. The gray hairs that I have to pluck out almost daily are an obvious reminder. I don't mind. Maybe it's those gray hairs that remind me that none of us is immortal; that I should spend more time to delight in the small things (that I can pluck those hairs one at a time instead of a clump!); that beauty can still be seen behind tired eyes; that family and friends seem to matter more and more; that taking time to be alone can bring peace to heart and mind; that everyday beauty is there - we just have to open our eyes and look!