I’m hoping this will be a little cathartic and it could be very disjointed, but I have to get this out, so please bear with me. 

I saw, the most heartbreaking thing I have seen in a long time, Wednesday.  If you remember, my grandparents house and possessions (what’s left of them anyway) are going to be auctioned of this Saturday.   This is the house where I lived from ages 2-22.  I grew up in this house.  It was my home and in some ways it feels like it still is. 

Well, I went by Wednesday, not knowing that the auctioners had been there all day packing up stuff.  When I walked in, it looked about normal, at least as normal as it had been looking; boxes everywhere, the “unlived” in smell the house has had since Mama died, the general disorder, etc, etc.  But as I moved through the house, the changes became more pronounced, but still nothing upsetting.

Until I moved into the den. 

My grandmother practically lived in the den after my grandfather’s death.  She had a lot of trouble sleeping in their bed without him, so she spent a lot of nights in the recliner.  And in the den, there are floor to ceiling shelves.  Which were crammed with books.  They had been that way since before I was born.  I have never seen those shelves empty.  Until Wednesday.  It was like the floor fell out from under me.  I just lost it. 

It’s really starting to hit home that she’s gone.  All along, it’s sort of felt like she’s still just down the road (she lived about a tenth of a mile from me) and all I have to do is go to the house.  Which I didn’t do much, to help perpetrate that myth.  But it’s really coming home that this is the end, my childhood home will be gone soon, my mama is gone, my papa is gone and there’s no going back. 

I’m not the only one taking this hard.  My aunt, my uncle, even my hubby.  Ellie does remember her, for now, but she’s not asking where “Granny” went so often any more.  I so wanted my daughter to know and remember my Mama. 

Well, my uncle has forbidden my aunt and I to go to the auction, so we’re going to the pool.  But I know I’ll still feel it, as every little piece is ripped away from me.  I just hope who ever gets their things, their (my) house, appreciate them.  And I hope that house has love and laughter inside it again. 

Baby steps, baby steps

I wrote today, on my novel, for the first time (in a serious manner) since December.  Over 50 words too!!  It’s not much, but it’s something!!  The hubby and I have been talking about my story lately, especially while we were on the vacay, and I think I’ve worked out some kinks.  And figured out a way cool (I think) way to tie two characters, or rather, stories.  Of course, this is all mush to most of you, as you haven’t read it.  Probably only Andi would get this, but I think I’ve figured out who “the hunter” is and he’s another character from another fairy tale.  I’m so excited!!! (I’ll send it soon Andiroo, if anyone else wants it, hit me, I love feedback).

I also read almost 40 more pages of War and Peace this morning.  The biggest surprise so far?  Tolstoy’s humor and wit.  I would have never dreamed there was humor in this novel, as I grew up terrified of it.  


First, I am much better today.  Was verrrrry hormonal yesterday, much more optimistic today. It’ll happen when it happens.  I’m just in a hurry.  Tick tock. Nah, really I’m only 28.  I just wanted my kids closer in age, that’s all.  It’ll happen.

Anyway, real reason for this post.  My copy of War and Peace came yesterday!  It’s freaking huge!  And gorgeous.  That’s it, right over there.  Isn’t it beautiful?!? I loves it very very much.  And that is a surprise to me.

Not very long ago, I wrote of my aversion to classics.  There have been some great ones in the past that I have really enjoyed.  I had a while period in high school where I read all the classics I could get my hands on: The Three Muskateers, The Count of Monte Cristo, The Hunchback of Notre Dame, Les Miserables, Tess of the D’Urbervilles, The Great Gatsby, oh I could go on and on.  I loved them all.  I went to college and majored in English.  I met E.M. Forester, Kate Chopin, Mary Wollstonecraft, AS Byatt, and many, many more.  Enjoyed them all  Yet for some reason, a feeling of… indifference… no… derision persisted with me.  It got especially bad after my grandfather died.  I couldn’t read much of anything after that happened, but classics were the worst.  I finally got to the point where my mind would literally fog over if I tried to read one. 

But then, this year, as I got to know more and more bloggy-reader-friends I saw what they were reading.  Middlemarch.  Glasworthy.  Capote.  Wilkie Collins.  Sir Arthur Conan Doyle.  I’ve been feeling left out.  So I bit the bullet and read Pride and Prejudice by Jane Austen, a book I had tried to read countless times and never made it more than 20 pages into.  And, surprise, surprise, I loved it.  Loved it!!  The veil has lifted!  At least I think it has.  When I saw Reading Middlemarch as now reading War and Peace, I thought, this will be the ultimate test.  Can I get into this huge, often intimidating novel?  Well, with the help of some intelligent, great people…sure!  And I have!  I killed 50 pages yesterday alone!  I am so…impressed with myself!  What was I afraid of?  I have no idea.  War and Peace is a cozy, nest of words I keep crawling back into and getting lost.  I am so glad I bit the bullet.

I've been tagged!

And since I can't think of anything else to write about except the fact that 1) I got my period which means 2) I am definitely NOT pregnant for the 10th month in a row and 3) I am very depressed and, well, angry about it.  So, in an effort to keep my sanity, I did a mindless meme.  Very theraputic. Thanks Jenn!


4 Jobs I've Had

  • Mailroom Clerk
  • Copy bitch
  • Castmember at the Disney Store
  • Waitress in Chinese hell

4 Movies I Could Watch Over & Over

  • While You Were Sleeping
  • Sweet Home Alabama
  • Pride and Prejudice
  • Bridget Jones's Diary

4 TV Shows I Love To Watch

  • HOUSE (duh)
  • Entourage
  • Prison Break
  • Bones

4 Places I've Been On Holiday

  • Montego Bay, Jamaica
  • Walt Disney World, Florida
  • Williamsburg Virginia
  • Myrtle Beach, SC

4 Websites I Visit Regularly (non-blog)

4 of My Favorite Foods

  • Shrimp Lo Mein
  • Hibachi Steak
  • My spaghetti
  • Chocolate

4 Places I'd Rather Be

  • At home
  • In bed
  • Reading
  • or sleeping

4 People to Tag

Anyone who wants it!

Weekend Plans

grilling!So, does anyone have any exciting weekend plans?  I'm going to a cookout at my aunt & uncle's house tonight, then my girl is going to spend the night with them.  So I'll have a free night!!  I'm not sure what I'll do yet.  I could go with the hubby to his brother's house, which would probably end up in me, if not drunk, a little buzzed.  OR, I could stay home and read one of the huge books I have going.  OR, I could goof off on the computer all night.  I've been itching to make some Entourage and 30 Seconds to Mars icons. Hmm.  Decisions decisions. 

Saturday will be sad.  We, that is, my aunt and I mainly, decided to have an estate auction to dispose of the remaining stuff of my grandmother's.  It has been so hard, especially on her, to go through all of those things, see the memories and know that those times are over.  It is so hard to let go.  But I know, deep down, that this is what my Mama (my grandmother raised me, for those who don't know, so it's more like I'm talking about my mother) would want us to do.  I keep tellling myself this, but I still find it so hard to just let go. 

I had a dream, a couple months ago, and my grandma came to see me.  We were at her house and she was leading me around showing me all her things, telling me what to keep and what to get rid of.  She made it very clear that I was to let go of the house, to stop holding on, and get on with my life.  She was so…her.  Stubborn, persistent…just like me.  She even told me to get rid of her piano, and, as it am the one to get it, I told her no way.  Some of my most fond memories of her are of her playing hymns for hours on that piano.  She broke her finger a few years ago and it never healed right and it forced her to stop.   I've missed her playing so much.  I want to relearn how.  And I want my girl to learn how.  She has the fingers for it, long and slender. 

Well, Saturday, we are moving said piano, all 500+ pounds of it to my house.  And the few things that are left.  It doesn't feel like her house any more, even though I do walk in and expect to see her sitting at the kitchen table reading.  It doesn't smell right anymore.  It doesn't…feel…right anymore.   It feels vacant and lonely and it needs love and laughter in it again.  So I know we are doing the right thing.  But damn, does it hurt.

Decisions decisions…

I'm not quite sure what I want to do.  I have Hunger's Brides going and it is going great.  I decided to take the plunge and joined in the War (& Peace) effort over at Reading Middlemarch (What have I gotten myself into!??!?!) and I reeeeally need to get working on that cause it is about as huge as Hunger's Brides.  I am also totally engrossed in Entourage, the HBO show loosely based on Marky Mark Wahlberg's life (it is awesome, I totally totally loooove.  I have a new crush in Jeremy Piven). 

Why, oh why, are there so few hours in the day?!?!  Add to that, I have a sicky kiddo.  She woke up this morning all stopped up and whiny. Come to think of it, I'm feeling a little scratchy and snotty myself.  *cough cough*  Maybe I should take a sick day tomorrow.  And read.   

Here's a pic from our vacay, on the James River, when she was feeling better.  She had SO much fun!  And isn't she tall?  She is SO tall.  She's only 2 1/2 and she's as tall as my 9-months-older niece.  Taller actually.

Maybe she'll be a model and support her poor old ma's reading habit.

A monster of a book…

Hunger's BridesBy now, you should know that I have a hard time 1) staying out of book stores and 2) leaving one without buying anything.  Well, I went in my favorite UBS Saturday and walked away 6 books richer and no money poorer.  God, I love credit for books.  Anyway, I found Hunger's Brides: A Novel of the Baroque by Paul Anderson for $7.50 (really free, natch! but retails for $35 in the US).  I have long flirted with this monster of a book since I first saw it at my library.  It's hard to miss.  1,376 pages, weighing in at 5 pounds (I weighed it myself); this mother is huge.  This novel within a novel tells the story of Juana Inés de la Cruz, a 17th century nun from Mexico and someone I had never heard of.  A child prodigy who taught herself to read at the age of 3, this remarkable woman, poet, scholar, nun, is definitely someone I want to "get to know" better.  At 1300+ pages, I definitely should do that.  I just hope I can stick with it until the end.

A sample of Sor Juana's poetry:

Rose, heaven's flower versed in grace,
from your subtle censers you dispense
on beauty, scarlet homilies,
snowy lessons in loveliness.
Frail emblem of our human framing,
prophetess of cultivation's ruin,
in whose chambers nature beds
the cradle's joys in sepulchral gloom.
So haughty in your youth, presumptuous bloom,
so archly death's approaches you disdained.
Yet even as blossoms soon fade and fray
to the tattered copes of our noon's collapse –
so through life's low masquerades and death's high craft,
your living veils all your dying unmasks.

Beautiful, no?  I am totally loving this warm, comfortable, summer read. Finally, I think I have found what I've been looking for lately, a cozy, beautiful book to immerse myself into.  The language alone is beautiful. I just wish it didn't weight so much.

So, I'm home…

and embarrassed to admit I didn’t really get to read very much.


I know, I know, and after I worried so much over what to take with me. I wound up taking 4 books with me. And I did finish on of those, The Princess Bride, which continues to be my absolute most favoritest book ever. This probably makes read number 92. Well, maybe not that high, it’s probably more like 15, but still.





I love the movie too, but the book. Oh my goodness, it eclipses the movie by like a million times. It is so much better than the movie. There is so much more there, the writing is impeccable, the characters so much more rich and amazing. You simply must read it. No ifs, ands, or buts. Now.

I also started The Polysyllabic Spree by Nick Hornby which, so far, is pretty delightful. I mean, ya’ll, the subtitle is “A hilarious and true account of one man’s struggle with the monthly tide of the books he’s bough and the books he’s been meaning to read.” That is so freaking me. It’s so freaking all of us.

Ellie vacay 2006And yes, a great time was had by all on the vacay. The young tyke exhausted herself everyday of the three days we spent at Busch Gardens. See! Look how tired she is! (Click on it for bigger size) We ate good food. We saw historical-like places, which were amazingly informative and fascinating. I now want to read history books like a madwoman. I did pick up two books on the ghosts of Williamsburg, Yorktown, Jamestown, and the area in general. Fun stuff!

I also was surprised to find one of my ancestors (I think) at Williamsburg. Sir Edwin Sandys (my maiden name is a deriviative of his last name, we changed it through the years) and he was pretty damn cool. Knighted by King James I, he was a treasurer for the Virginia Company. He translated Ovid’s Metamorphosis into English (one thing I read said this was the beginning of the literary arts in the new world, beat that!) and that’s not even touching the iceberg. I’ve only traced my line back to the early 1700s, with help from other cousins. No one has gotten any further back than that, but they are pretty sure we came from Sir Edwin. I thought it was so cool to see his name and see where he walked and lived and to know I (possibly) came from that.

So, yes, had a fantastical time. But am sooooo glad to be home.