When Jason and I decided to get married, it wasn’t because we wanted to spend the rest of our lives together. We knew that without needing paperwork. Besides making some family members happier about our sin-livin’, I wanted to get married for one reason: a KitchenAid mixer.
Once we sent out the announcements, we went to Target to make a gift registry*. After choosing some modest additions to our existing belongings, we went to see the mixer.
Here’s the plot twist: I got cold feet — about the mixer. It’s so expensive, and we didn’t *need* it. So I chickened out.
Four years of lamenting later, this came in the mail:
And here it sits, happily ever after:
* people will buy you gifts if you want them to or not, so a registry means no guessing on their part, or returning on yours.
It’s my birthday. I have a raging back injury. I’m feeling particularly old.
That being said, I still had trouble falling asleep last night due to birthday anticipation. I’m quite proud of my childlike ability to get excited about life. I wonder if it’s what makes me such a happy person, or a symptom of it. Either way, it’s my birthday, and I have plenty to be happy about.
A’Nova is coming over today to help out, which is wonderful because I’m not really able to do it myself yet. Also, if you asked me if I’d like Nov to hang out all day for my birthday, I’d say yes.
Tonight J’s mom is coming. She runs her own greenhouse, so she can stay for a week and help out while I finish healing up, and give me a chance to catch up on everything I’ve not been doing this past week. She doesn’t need to start planting seeds till the end of the month. While she’s here, I’m hoping we can talk about what I should plant in my garden.
So it’s going to be a good birthday. 80 just went down for her nap, and by the time she’s awake, Nov should be here. This morning for the brief time after J left but before 80′s nap, we put her in the baby jail. She’s safer in there, since I can’t keep up with her. I’m glad we have it, for just these situations.
I’m listening to The Omnivore’s Dilemma by Michael Pollan, mostly as I walk around Cambridge and Boston, and when I’m weeding in the garden. (The latter being what I’ve taken to doing every morning.)
I’ve made it through the maize, past McDonalds, and into the beef industry. Having grown up on an Iowa beef (and corn and soy) farm, I have personal experience with Pollan’s topics. It seems that the farmers he interviews and what he chooses to include in the book does not always reflect my family’s farm, but that is to be expected. It does ring true though, from what I know. The problem is, I don’t actually know that much about how my father farms.
My reaction as I’m listening has mostly been mute awe at the industrialization and commodification of food – and all the ills and boons that come with it.
The last time I was home to visit my family, I got up the courage to ask my dad why he didn’t farm something other than corn and soy. He said there was no other crop (or crops) that would allow him to be as successful, as a one-man operation.
I took this to heart – letting go of the fantasy of starting an organic vegetable farm with my brother, which would service the local population (a mere 30 miles away).
This morning, as I was listening to the audiobook and pulling crab grass, I learned about farmers who have eschewed industrial farming AND organic farming, electing instead to find a sustainable balance instead (neither industrial or mass-farming organically are doing this). Pollan describes a farm in Virginia that rotates cattle, chickens, and various other animals over grassland, in such a way that benefits each animal species as well as the grass (and dirt).
Granted, I get excited about things easily (look! a sign that reads ‘puppy sale’!), but I really feel that there is some answer for how to use the land my family already has, once the only farmer working it is retired. Sure, we could rent it to someone else — we could even sell it. I prefer to scheme ways to keep it going with Greens (my dad is the fifth generation).
Now I just have to stop loving living in Boston, and convince Jason to move to Iowa. Though he doesn’t like to talk about it, I think my dad would like to retire eventually, and I think taking over a farm and successfully keeping it running isn’t outside the realm of possibility. It makes my heart ache to think about it.
These photos were taken during the floods in June. The first is the field across from the house, and the second is my father, during one of the last days of rising water.
This week, I decided that I needed to kick it up a notch. I’ve always had a problem with fundraising, ever since my days of Girl Scouts. I’ve made peace with this by pulling myself into the thing I know best.
This is just what I can do with bread. Just imagine the cookies.
Yeah, I said it. If you donate, any amount at all, I’ll send you a batch of my great grandma Bertha’s amazing oatmeal raisin or my extraordinary great aunt Gertrude’s chocolate chip cookies. It’s the only way I know how to raise money, so I’m doing it up GS style.
I’m trying to raise $1,000 to help hungry people, and I’m (as of this posting) 27% done. I hate asking for money, but I also hate world hunger, so this helps to solve both.
AND, if you donate $20 or more, I’ll also send you the zine I’m making about the whole thing, with both cookie recipes. (The only stipulation is that you refer to them as great-grandma Bertha’s or great-aunt Gertrude’s recipe.)
So, this is a blog post about how I’m going to be all noble and walk 20 miles in the name of eradicating hunger. I usually react negatively to these kinds of posts, because it sucks asking people for money. (And I’m still a bit traumatized from Girl Scout cookie selling as a child.)
This has an altruistic intention, as well as a selfish one:
* No one likes hunger, right? So that’s easy. We can all feel good about fighting that.
* Walking a whole bunch of miles, as a massive group, makes me feel good – like I’m helping both raise money and awareness (and people watch me).
There are lots of reasons not to donate any money (and truth be told, you’re probably thinking of them now), but if any of these resonate with you at all (and you can spare $20 without impacting your own grocery budget), consider it:
1. Once you donate, it actually feels pretty good, and although $20 feels like a buncha money, it’s not, and the feeling you’ll have is worth somewhere in the neighborhood of $7-$22.
2. You have guilty feelings when you walk by people who are homeless. Or general white guilt.
3. You can live vicariously through me. I’ll liveblog a couple times that day, so you can see beautiful Boston Commons and Cambridge and such. This is going to be fun, and I will enjoy it, and I will share!
4. This could be seen as karmic insurance, or a tax write-off, depending on your beliefs. (It’s both!)
So, effing click on RIGHT HERE and then click on the button, and then put in your credit card number, and you’re done. It’s easy. Stop being a baby.
March celebrates so many important holidays, but take just a moment to honor the first set of zine reviews in Library Journal. I was one of many people to help write reviews, and now it’s all published on shiny, shiny paper.
I can’t tell you enough how much I’m loving my job. Right now the reason is that I like attention, and I’m getting it. Today Tim introduced me (and the other newish employee Chris) to the world on LibraryThing blog.
Sub-happiness comes from two of the four comments so far being from friends who are also LibraryThing geeks.
Tertiary happiness comes from getting Tim to use the term ‘bucket of sunshine’ (albeit with a disclaimer) to describe me.
OK, also, I look totally cute in the picture. Thanks to Abby and her iPhone for the hott picture.
It’s my birthday, all! Last night, around midnight, I decided to get all excited for my birthday. I made Jason be charming and fun. (Then he put his cold feet on my legs.)
Today I slept in (8:40!), reached my hand over to the nightstand, pulled over the Nintendo DS, and played videogames for an hour. Then a bubble bath, and a call to my sister. Now I’m eating frosted mini wheats and updating my Goodreads. I’m going to go pants shopping (thanks ever so much to Inky for pointing out this fabulous website that asks you in-depth questions about jeans and bras and such, then offers suggestions based on your body shape) and meet Jason for a birthday dinner.
I was thinking about picking up a tiara to wear, but it’s snowing and I don’t think it’ll fit under my hat. Maybe I need to knit a hat that has room for a tiara, or a hat that has a tiara on it. That would be totally Fancy Nancy.
I don’t seem to be a very good voter. There was the great debacle of 2004, and now again I have found out that by moving too much and not keeping track of the whatsits and whosits, I can’t vote tomorrow.
This weekend I moved. I live in the same state I did before I moved. I just didn’t let the election people know. I can drive back to my old city and vote there (and 4 hours in the car), or just throw my hands up, again.
On the upside, this is just the primary. I shall have my docudrama in order for the biggie.