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What I Was Up to in March

April 1, 2013
Plus, our dog learned how to open up Easter eggs and eat the chocolate out of the center.  I got to fill Easter eggs twice this year.

Plus, our dog learned how to open up Easter eggs and eat the chocolate out of the center. I got to fill Easter eggs twice this year.

I didn’t get this posted on the last day of March thanks to Easter.  I’ve been ruminating over several different posts related to Holy Week.  However, today my brain is fried from taking a state standardized test (yuck!!) and instead of trying to make sense, I thought I’d opt to lighter, more fun subjects.  I’m linking up again with Hopeful Leigh’s What I’m Into.

Reading:

I joined a neighborhood book club in February and for March, we read our first book:  Rebecca by Daphne Du Maurier.  I enjoyed the book, but didn’t love it.  I found it a bit slow in the beginning and too predictable.    However, it was nice to be encouraged to read something different for a change.  I must admit, I was bit nervous about joining the book club.  As the first group discussion veered to decorating and crafts, I worried as I sat among the very put together looking women.  Groups of women, especially new women, scare me.  I realize how little I like some of the typical women things like decorating, shopping, and fashion and I feel insecure.  I was quite relieved when our second meeting rolled around and I discovered despite my misgivings, I enjoyed being around that group of women and wasn’t the outsider/non-cool kid I felt like the first time.

In the non-fiction world, I finished all my Henri Nouwen books, both Life of the Beloved and The Return of the Prodigal Son.  I even wrote about The Return of the Prodigal Son.  I remain a devouted Nouwen fan.

I also started sevensacredpauses:  Living Mindfully Through the Hours of the Day by Macrina Wiederkehr.  In February, one of my dear women talked about praying the hours (according to the Benedictines).  I was curious and ordered this book.  I’ve been reading it slowly, trying to add another daily prayer to my life each month.  My normal reading/prayer time has become a bit of midday prayer and in March I tried to start with a morning prayer–mostly first thing in the morning when I woke up.   In Wiederkehr’s book, she walks you through each of the prayer times.  At the end of each chapter, she includes a prayer guide, a prayer of the hour, and additional poems, prayers and readings for each hour.  So far, I’ve read the night watch and the awakening hour.  I plan on reading the blessing hour this month.  I’ve decided I’m not waking up to do the night watch, but if I happen to wake up in the middle of the night, I will make it a point to pray.

For Lent, I continued through The Breath of the Soul, by Joan Chittister.  During Holy Week, I added some poetry to my daily reading–Madeleine L’Engle’s Cry Like a Bell and Rilke’s Book of Hours.  A confession about the Rilke.  I enjoy reading the poems more in German than in English.  Not a big deal, except that I don’t know German.  I just like the music of the poetry more in German than in English.  I barely understand the poetry in English, so  the German isn’t that much of a stretch.  Given this information, this book may not be the best match for me.

Music:

Thanks to Holy Week, I continued with Conspirare’s Requiem, fitting music I thought.  I’ve also been enjoying The Milk Carton Kids’ The Ash and Clay.  Mumford and Sons’ Babel and The Steel Wheels Lay Down, Lay Low fueled my drive to Albuquerque (12 hours….with three kids…and just me to be the adult….).

Movies and TV:

It was a month when we didn’t watch TV or movies much.  With my road trip with the kids, Curtis’s traveling for work, and life in general just seeming to get ramped up a notch, we spent evenings talking instead of watching much.  Shocking right?  I did watch a little Grey’s Anatomy–they somehow managed to suck me back in.  We also watched Beasts of the Southern Wild.  It was an incredible movie.  I am still processing it.  In the blurb about it, before we rented it, it said it was uplifting and heartwarming.  Hmm…..I definitely wouldn’t have described it in either of those words.  However, I did like it and think it would be a good movie to watch again sometime.

Food:

Nothing new, just visited some old favorites and some kid friendly places.  One of our current favorite restaurants is also a boutique bowling alley.  We had a yummy meal there with friends (mmm….beef tenderloin with chimichurri sauce and fries with a strong cheese and herbs….) and then managed to get a bowling lane, even though they had told us earlier they were all booked for the evening.

My March cooking achievement was the annual making of the Columba di Pasqua–an Italian Easter rich bread that takes a good 18 hours to make (plus time to source the candied orange peel and dove bread molds).  I almost didn’t get it made this year, but managed to pull it off at the last minute (well, the last 18 hours).  It was fabulous, especially smeared with nutella.  We also went strawberry picking on Good Friday–an annual tradition.  In addition to 29 jars of freezer jam and strawberry shortcake, we’ve been making lots of strawberry blender drinks–kinda like an orange julius.  We discovered they make an excellent adult drink with the addition of some rum and fresh mint.  Mmm…..Madeleine can almost make it herself (not the grown up kind though).

Otherwise:

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The kids and I did a road trip to Albuquerque for spring break.  We had a great time with my sister and my niece.  Albuquerque is an awesome family city to visit–lots of museums for kids to visit–a zoo and a natural history museum with the best docent ever.  The pizza place we ate at one evening even gave the kids dough to play with while we waited for our pizza.

Soccer and baseball are in full swing for the big two.  Well, baseball would be in full swing if the middlest wasn’t still in a cast.  Hopefully that will come off on Thursday–no broken bones–just four stitches or so in the fleshy part under his thumb.  We also started a deck project which is keeping all of us entertained.

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One Comment leave one →
  1. April 4, 2013 4:51 pm

    It can take awhile for Book Clubs to come together so I’m glad you gave yours another chance and felt like you fit in more the second time. I read Rebecca ages ago- maybe when I was in high school- and found it to be intriguing, especially the way Du Maurier utilized her narrator. I’m a huge fan of Rilke, especially Book of Hours. I’m German by way of heritage but I don’t know the language. I think most poems are best understood in the language they were written in but I’ll settle for the translation. That Italian Easter bread sounds amazing!

    Thanks for linking up with What I’m Into!

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