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What I Was Up to this Month-June

July 1, 2013

June started with us finishing up the school year and ended with us planning an impromptu 5000 mile road trip (because shouldn’t all 5000 mile road trips be impromptu?  If they weren’t would anyone ever do them?).  School ended and the kids and I made our summer bucket list.  So far, we’ve done two things off our list without much hope of getting to much more.  We’ve swam at the YMCA and went bowling on what was hopefully the hottest day of the summer (106!!!).

Here’s a bit of what my life has been full of.


Someone turned 8.  8??  Eight is old.  Eight is third grade and friends becoming more important (she ignores her family at the pool sometimes now!!).  Eight falls asleep reading at night and writes long stories based off books she’s read.  Eight loves her journal with special ink.  Eight is more responsible and can cook egg and cheese tacos for all of us for breakfast.  Eight chooses to dress as the character Camicazi from the How to Train Your Dragon for character day at school and walks around saying, like Camicazi, “That’s pretty good.  For a boy.”


This wonderful man passed away on June 25.  The impromptu road trip is occurring so we can all attend his funeral plus still get to keep our long planned weekend with Curtis’s cousins.


Have I mentioned that we do a lot of swimming in June?  We do.  Swim team is now over (and has been for one week already and it has been glorious!).


Curtis and I celebrated our ten year anniversary the end of June.  We stayed at the same hotel we stayed at (in town) on our wedding night, ate at our favorite Italian restaurant, got fair trade chocolate from the Ten Thousand Villages across the street from our hotel, and watched High Fidelity.  We were able to reminisce about bits of our ten years together and talk about where we may be in ten years (can’t even fathom how old our children will be in ten years.  Ten years moves much differently when you measure it by your children’s ages).  We had a lazy morning with coffee and pastries and granola/yogurt and then picking up our minivan which had just gotten new tires put on it in preparation for our trip.  Back to reality!


Lest you think life at our house is normal.  This is what John wore to bike to swim practice (and home again) one day.  You can’t see them behind his bag, but he’s wearing speedo jammers (the biker short type speedos), and he also had spy glasses as well.


I read a lot this month.  I can hardly believe how much I read.  However, if you were to see my the condition of my house, you would find it easy to believe.

Tigers in Red Weather by Liza Klaussmann.  This was my book club book.  I didn’t like it.  There was just one, maybe, character who I liked a little.  There was little redemption for anyone, little hope that maybe the sad paths their lives were on would change.  Meh.

Gilead by Marilynne Robinson. I wanted to like this one.  I felt like I liked this one, in fact.  However, I think I read it to fast.  It needed to be savored and well, I wasn’t much in a savoring mood.  I would like to read this one again sometime.

Rules of Civility by Amor Towles.  I enjoyed this book.  It was a fun, easy read, but also had enough meat to it that I had a little bit to think about (and a few pages to take pictures of with my phone for later sharing).  The book takes place in the 1930’s.  Katey Content tells the story of a few years of her life in New York City with her friend Eve and Tinker.  Unexpected turns change the course of all of their lives and I finished the book very satisfied.

Where’d You Go,Bernadette by Maria Semple.  I know I’m a bit behind on this one.  Everyone’s been reading it for forever.  I loved this book.  It went on my to-keep bookshelf instead of the pile of books building behind the chair in my bedroom to eventually sell to Half Price Books.  The book is written in typical narrative form.  It uses lots of fictional primary sources–letters, e-mails, report cards to tell the story, with Bee narrating to fill in the gaps.  Nothing is quite what it seems in this book. It was fun, the ending was great, and it was very well written.

Jayber Crow by Wendell Berry.  If you haven’t already noticed, four out of five of these books came off of Mrs. Darcy’s Summer Reading List.  I must say, she hasn’t let me down.  I loved Jayber Crow.  It was the first book I read this summer and it was one to be savored.  I read a few pages or a chapter at a time at first.  I enjoyed the slower pace.  Berry’s writing is incredible.  This was the first novel I’ve read of Berry’s and I loved seeing his passions show up in the pages of the book–in his reflections on faith and religion and the tension between old small-scale agriculture and the new large-scale agribusiness.  I ended up finishing the book a little on the fast side because I wanted to pass it off to my mom.

As you can probably guess, with all this reading, I haven’t been watching much TV or movies.  I have finally moved on to Season 2 of Gray’s Anatomy and other than the opening theme song, I am still loving it.  Sometime in the middle of this season I started watching many years ago.  And that’s it.  I can’t really remember any other movies or TV shows I’ve watched this month.  I’ve wanted to watch So You Think You Can Dance, but have read instead.  I’m also eager to see Joss Whedon’s Much Ado About Nothing, but I have no idea when that will happen.  Probably when I can rent it.


We were able to try Stiles Switch Barbecue this month for our Fake Father’s Day (someone’s actual birthday fell on Father’s Day so we celebrated Father’s Day a week early).  I loved Stiles’s ribs, but wasn’t too fond of their brisket or cabbage slaw.  At home I’ve enjoyed summer cooking–especially as cucumbers, tomatoes, melons, and peppers are showing up in our CSA box.  We had pimiento cheese sandwiches (with homemade roasted peppers) for lunch, a cucumber and tomato salad with parsley from my garden for supper tonight, and a Nicoise salad with fresh tomatoes and potatoes from our CSA last night for supper.  Summer eating is good.  Well, mostly.  Expect for the summer squash and okra.  I pass those off on neighbors.

That’s it.  That’s what I’ve been up to.  I’ll probably be quieter for the next month.  I’m not sure, on all my travels in the car, if I’ll have a chance to write or not.  I’m guessing not.

See you all at the end of July!!  (to let you know exactly what I’ve been up to).

I’m linking up with Hopeful Leigh for What I’m Into.

5 Comments leave one →
  1. July 2, 2013 8:48 am

    I have an eight year-old too. SUCH a fun age.

    The Rules of Civility, Where’d You Go Bernadette, and Gilead are all on my to-read list. I had a feeling that Gilead would be one that would NOT be a quick read. Or, as you said, perhaps “should not” be!

  2. July 2, 2013 7:36 pm

    I really want to read Rules of Civility – thanks for the reminder! 🙂

  3. July 5, 2013 8:03 pm

    So glad to find another Austin-ite on Leigh’s link up! Thanks for the recommendations.

  4. July 9, 2013 2:03 pm

    I’m sorry for your loss and hope the road trip goes well. Congratulations on 10 years! Loved Rules of Civility. It seemed like an easy read on the surface but was way more complex as the plot got underway.

    Thanks for linking up with What I’m Into!


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