Friday, December 25, 2009

For Adrienne. Merry Christmas!

Ten ways to know if you are a minor character in a movie/tv show...

-Your conversations consist largely of random expository information (How've you been, Bob, since your wife died in mysterious circumstances last winter?)

-You have only one name

-You are the third fastest pilot/driver/draw/etc. (the second fastest is usually the villain)

-You face off against the hero after his initial ignominious defeat and before the climactic battle

-Your backstory can be explained in a single sentence

-You say things like "There are four of us and one of you..."

-Your bullets are proven ineffective against the monster and you just keep shooting

-You are the only girl, boy, foreigner, rocket scientist, person with a cool accent, person in a wheelchair, or lonely martian in the group

-You are defined by a single endearing quirk, and you find and fall in love with a person possessing that same quirk with only a significant look, a word or two, and thirty seconds of 'bowmp-chicka-wow-wow' music

-Your only line is 'Grrr!'/'Aaaaaah!'

So there you go.
Merry Christmas all!

(Tune in next time for the Minor Character's Survival Guide)

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Christmas Eve

Hello friends! I am writing to you all from my mother's computer in Ridgecrest. It is Christmas Eve, and we are all in our respective happy places (and by 'we' I mean my mother and father and me). Mom is sitting under a light blanket, looking up pertinent verses to augment an upcoming Bible study lesson, Dad is dusting and rearranging the eclectic memorabilia that constitute the full extent of my family's concept of interior decorating, and I am just soaking up all the comforting family ethos that makes me 'charmingly quirky' to friends and 'just plain weird' to students. Whenever I am home (Ridgecrest), it's like a small but significant part of my insides unwinds, my inner kaleidascope aligns, some sort of deep-seated constant dissonance resolves, and things just make sense. Dad is looking at one of his favorite books, and regaling us with little known facts about the Ancient Celts and their subtle influence on Roman sculpture, when he informs us that he would really like to learn to speak Gaelic someday. Mom just sits next to me, radiating peace. I hope your Christmas Eve is just as lovely.

Wednesday, October 21, 2009


On his last visit to the Northwest, my dad bought me a Christmas tree. That's right, a little four foot tall bona-fide Charlie Brown Christmas tree. It currently stands "mounted" on an old cardboard shoe-box directly in front of my living room window, where the twinkling lights can thoroughly confuse any passing motorists who happen to look up. It's got two strings of colored lights wrapped around its diminutive frame. The bright little colored sprinkles of light are reflected in a festive cone in my window, very nearly doubling the Christmas cheer.

I just might leave it up all year.

Saturday, October 17, 2009

Rain, Running, and Stories

It rained all night last night, and I mean RAINED, so that I woke up several times to hear water pelting down onto the skylight in my room (I love my skylight, by the way). I didn't mind it because today is Saturday, and I have no plans until tonight--except to write.

It's been ever so long since I last wrote, and many things have happened. Among these things is a sort of re-working of my insides (the invisible emotional ones, not my actual bodily insides) which is the closest I will come to making an excuse for the recent dearth in blogwork. It's taking up a big chunk of space on my hard drive and making all my other programs sluggish and unresponsive. I like to think that the other side of this process will bring you a stronger Sarah, or at least one who knows who she is and where she's going. We shall see.

In lighter news, you are now reading the blog of a runner. That's right, I, who have historically been the athletic antithesis of fast, run. And I actually like it (!). I never really ran before (not on a regular basis) because it was hard to ignore the fact that it looked and felt ridiculous to expend that much energy and still be traveling that slowly. But now I have friends who run with me, and where two or more are gathered, "ridiculous" turns into "social." My friends and I run three or four miles at least once a week. We keep trying for twice or thrice a week, but it doesn't always happen. Of course, our pace is alot closer to that of the tortoise than the hare, but it's the thought that counts, right? My favorite part is when we've just finished running, and one feels a delightful combination of accopmlishment and well-deserved exhaustion. Ultimately, I think the habit gives more energy than it takes. The work week hasn't been kicking my butt the way it used to... So my P.E. teachers were right after all. Fancy that.

On to the next subject: stories. One of my church friends has a little boy, a very cute little boy, who asks me to tell him a story every time he sees me. It's very flattering, especially when he actually listens to whatever I tell him. Sometimes the stories are the kind you usually get when you're making things up as you go along (like the surprisingly creepy one with the giant worm eating his way out of a giant apple in the mysterious old ladies' basement), but some of them were not half bad. So, at the behest of another friend who often overhears these stories, I have begun to write one of them down. I thought maybe I'd give it to her as a Christmas present, since, at the rate I write, it will probably be December by the time I get to the end. But the experience of actually writing a story with a beginning and an end is new and, mostly, pleasant. I've journalled and written poetry, but I've never been able to finish a story. However, if I can successfully resist my heavily ingrained perfectionistic tendencies, perhaps I will have a modest fairy-tale to share with you all in the (relatively) near future. Again, we shall see.

Well, I have to go buy toilet paper and shaving cream. But I promise to write again soon.
Bye, friends!

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

Because Kirsten gave me a Look when we were talking about blogs.

Do you smell it? That's the smell of backpacks and pencil sharpeners, of new clothes and fresh haircuts. It is the bitter-sweet decay of fun as frivolous party dude Summer gives way to conscientious goody-two-shoes Autumn. I heard someone watching a professional football game yesterday. Nothing announces the end of summer like the muffled tones of John Madden thrumming through the wall.

Summer is fading. People are vacationing with the frenzied intensity of those who know that the park is about to close, that this ride will probably be the last...until next year.

I am not immune to the change, either. I begin to catch myself composing lesson plans and mapping out learning units and holiday programs in the quiet hours of the afternoon. I am even a little ashamed to admit that even though this has been quite possibly the best summer yet, I find myself eager to start another school year.
(I interrupt my reverie to inform you that my young cousinling Greta is currently trying to eat the couch. I wouldn't worry too much. She doesn't have any teeth yet. I may have mentioned her before. She is also affected by the coming school season, having recently sloughed off the summer laziness of sitting, blob-like, and eating her toes, in favor of a concentrated effort towards independant ambulation. She's not yet up to crawling, mind you, but she rolls with a grace and efficiency marvelous to behold--one leg flung into the air, like a lone synchronized swimmer in the olympic pool of carpet that is her living room floor. I would not be surprised if she skipped crawling altogether and went straight from rolling to walking. She has that sort of intelligent mischievousness about her. She also has an extremely arresting face...the sort of face that makes one impatient for the amorphous gurglings she currently emits to form themselves into words. A small part of me worries that she may skip words altogether and go straight to telepathy. I wonder that people have the nerve to produce more babies, when perfection has so obviously already been achieved. We pardon their ignorance, and smile with beneficence upon those whose progeny merely crawl and stare.)

There! my interruption has become more interesting than my reverie. Where was I?
Oh yes. School's starting...

Too late. Things are happening which are more interesting to me than writing about school.
Did I say I was looking forward to school? Blech.
Summer isn't over yet!

Monday, July 27, 2009

In which Sarah gets religious

I was listening to a very good sermon yesterday about the servant-hood of Christ as a reflection of his being fully God. And in this sermon, Pastor Josh used the Trinity as an example of God being God by serving. The Trinity (for those of you who did not grow up in Sunday School) is...difficult to explain. It's a way that Christians think of God, where he is three complete person-hoods (Father, Son, and Holy Spirit) that together are one complete God (God). I'm not going to try to explain it because I don't fully understand it myself. But Pastor Josh was pointing out how each person of the Trinity serves or "submits" to the others. Jesus is always doing things because he knows they will please the Father, and the Holy Spirit is often described as submitting to both the Father and Son (Jesus).

So here's the thought that came to me: whom does the Father submit to? God the Father is indeed part of the Trinity, but I couldn't for the life of me think of a time when God the Father submits to the other two, at least not in the Bible. He is the head honcho, the source of everything, the creative will that started it all, and the final judge as to how it will all end. Whom would He put Himself under?

And here's the answering thought:
Us. God submits to us. Now before you start throwing things at your computer and deleting me from your 'friend' list, let me explain. According to the Bible, God created people with the ability and responsibility to decide what to do with themselves. In fact, a significant portion (if not all) of that blessed book concerns choices. God seems always to be commanding, warning, cajoling, encouraging, even begging people to choose one thing over another, and then responding to choices made. Now I know that there are times (like with the Pharaoh in Exodus) when it looks like God has rigged the system, but the overwhelming majority of the story of God the Father and his children (us) is one of paths presented, directions taken, relationships formed, trust given, trust broken, waywardness forgiven, love shared. Love can not exist without the ability to choose, and sacrificial love (like the love of Jesus on the cross) would just be stupid if it did not preserve this freedom of the beloved's. Inasmuch as God gives us this will to spend ourselves and our times as we see fit, he abides by our choices, and in abiding, he submits. To us.

Kind of a scary thought, isn't it? Cool, but scary.

Anyway, that's what occurred to me during the sermon at church yesterday. I hope I didn't make your head hurt.

Next time I shall try to come with a modest joke or something fun like that. Not that deep thoughts aren't fun, but it's the sort of fun one associates with climbing mountains--worthwhile, but not particularly comfortable.


Thursday, July 16, 2009

Well, faithful followers, it is time for your monthly dose of Sarah.
To tell the truth, I have been putting off this post because most of my blogworthy thoughts occur at decidedly un-blogworthy know, like when I'm driving somewhere, or in the middle of church, or when I'm showering (see last month's post), or otherwise incapacitated (is that too strong a word?).

So anyway, I thought I'd just write what's floating around in my head right now because if I wait for inspiration to coincide with convenience we might as well just pack up and go home.

I'm going to be twenty-seven in a few weeks, an age that is significant because of its resounding insignificance. There's nothing new I get to do. My last milestone (25) is now more than a year gone, and there is now no use even pretending I'm anywhere close to being a kid anymore. My coming-of-age seems to have come already--my 'self' has been good and discovered--and I face my life with that same feeling of surreptitious and somewhat emberassing disappointment that one feels at 10 o'clock on Christmas morning when one's pile of gifts lies, naked and small, among shards of discarded wrapping paper. It's not that I'm ungrateful. Far from it! I have one of the sweetest deals ever: a freakin' awesome job, amazing family, marvelous friends, and an almost indecent amount of freedom and opportunity. I think I'm just feeling the loss of all the sheer possibility that I got so accustomed to growing up. We're always being told as kids that we can do anything, that someday the world will belong to us and who knows what we'll make of it or of ourselves. But hardly anyone talks about the fact that being one thing necessarily negates being everything else. It's not that I couldn't drop everything and join the circus, it's that I can't do that and continue teaching music at Conway. So now I've arrived at my future. I've unwrapped the gift, as it were, which like Schroedinger's cat, no longer exists in multiple states, but presents a single concrete reality. I really shouldn't whine. I could have unwrapped a dead cat.

So much for my birthday. Living is really quite complicated, you know? I hadn't really expected that. In other news, I have a new apartment. It is a beautiful place, a converted attic that combines the charming secrecy of my last place with the even greater charm of having windows I can look out of and an entire hallway to call my own. You know you've made it when you've got your own hallway! Also, I have begun to try my hand at growing things. (Wish me luck--you are reading the blog of someone who has killed a cactus). My wonderful downstairs neighbor brought me some pretty little flowers (they look like pansies, but they're not) and a great big pot full of carrots (which I shall be eating as soon as they're big enough--fun!). Soon I would like to add a small herb garden to my little balcony-at-the-top-of-the-world, and who knows what else.

Well the day, like me, is no longer young, and I have "miles to go before I sleep." So I shall sign off now.

Maybe I'll start carrying a notebook around so as to catch those mocking little blog-thoughts before they flutter away. Hmm...

Friday, June 19, 2009

June contribution

I read poetry in the bathroom. (TMI, I know. But it's my blog.)
I do this because poems, most poem, are shorter than novels, and nobody likes ring-butt.

So anyway, this morning I was reading poetry, and then I took a shower. Everyone knows that the best thoughts come to us in the shower, and this poem came to me there.
(Incidentally, this is why I take long showers. I like to think.)

For Alisha, Adrienne, SHS, and me
(upon our turning twenty-seven)

I was old when I was younger
I'll be young when I am old.
I do not think I'll ever match my age,
if truth be told.
I'm always pushing forward
or else I'm looking back.
I don't know what to do with all this
mental bric-a-brac.
Experience collected
doesn't add up very well,
and where the heck I'm s'posed to go from here
I can not tell.
True living is a secret
that all good grown-ups keep--
You fill the day as best you can,
and then you go to sleep.

So there it is.
(I hope you like it, Alisha. You inspired it. Well, you and a book of children's poems...and a nice warm shower.)

Bye everyone,
I'm off to Kaua'i!

Saturday, May 23, 2009

Thoughts on a breezy walk by the tall grass.

It's so much more fun being me than trying to be impressively acceptable.

Proof #347 why I believe there is a God: in the quietest of quiet moments, when I ought to feel the loneliest, that's when I'm most aware that I'm not alone.*

I have a treacherous heart, a slippery little thing.

It feels good to want things, deep and meaningful things. It's a sign of life and a byproduct of having hope for one's future.

I like hearing the wind through the trees/really tall grass.

I'm glad there are no poisonous snakes (or feral lions) in western Washington.

Someday, I'm going to have a baby (in wedlock--hence the "someday").

I'm 85% sure that someday I'll get a tattoo. Or maybe God will be my tattoo.*

I am kind of like Piglet (from the Winnie-the-Pooh books): small, somewhat intelligent, painfully sensitive, a little bit vain, a little bit in awe/jealous of the Poohs in my life, and always having to "be brave."

If Mary Poppins really did love every child she had to say goodbye to, then she must have had a very rich life.

I'm rich like that.

I don't mind not knowing how I'm going to turn out...actually, I kind of like the suspense.

Reason # 28 why I don't think I'll ever get drunk: thinking clearly and noticing things seems like alot more fun when your discoveries still make sense the next day (and you don't have a headache).

I would love to be able to identify and imitate bird songs. It's on my list...right under learning French and playing the piano well enough not to disgrace myself in public.

God is kind of like dark matter in that without Him, the math of life doesn't add up. If you reverse-engineer a soul, you find a sort of thirst or gravity that implies something very, very big.**

Okay, I really should be doing homework right now. There's always homework.

Happy Weekend!


*disclaimer: These thoughts have not been proofread (that much) for grammar or the unabashed hokiness of naked sincerity. Yes, I did just say naked. This post is now rated PG.

**That one would make alot more sense if you could see the video in my head, complete with impressive whooshing "gravity" sound effects.

Sunday, April 26, 2009

Amusing words update

Remember that blog entry I wrote about words and phrases that make me smirk? (Just scroll down a bit if you don't--It's embarassing how little I've written since December!) Well, I've just thought of another one to add to the list.

You know how people sometimes call each other "Hon," as an abbreviation of the endearment "Honey"? Well, whenever I hear somebody using that word, I like to pretend that they've actually said "Hun," as in "Attila the Hun," and that the meek, unassuming wife/husband/small child/patron of the greasy-spoon eatery to whom the term has been applied is actually a fearsome barbarian, clothed in bloodied armor and animal hides.

*I chuckle*

It's almost better than all those furions in the underverse.

Oh! and also...
Yesterday I watched the Classic Trek episode where the beautiful (and scantily clad) alien-lady steals Spock's brain (!), and Kirk and Bones (et. al) have to beam down to the alien planet to find it and somehow put it back in Spock's inexplicably not-yet-dead body (!!), which they manipulate by means of a handy little remote control device (!!!)--because really, who wants to schlepp a full-grown vulcan (sans brain) through the tunnels of the pretty alien ladies' underground paradise?-- And then, to top it off, when Bones gets all nervous about not hooking up all Spock's neurons correctly into their respective brain outlets, Kirk just tells him to fix the vocal chords first so that Spock can walk him through the rest of his own brain-restoration surgery(!!!!) which he does (!!!!!). Talk about hardcore.

Honestly! How did they ever film it with straight faces?

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Very Micro Economics

Where has all the money gone?
It strikes me as strange that everyone all over the globe has suddenly run out of cash. How can we all be hurting for cash? The money we all don't have has to have ended up somewhere, right?
It seems pretty fishy to me.

Actually, here's what I think has really happened: We all got used to pretending that enough money exists for us to do whatever it is we want to do, until we finally got to the point where that no longer works. Either we can't pretend anymore, or for some reason we're no longer willing to. It's a puzzler. But even though this gives me the same unsettled feeling I used to get when guest preachers would discuss the end of the world, I'm honestly not that upset. I know things will have to change--but things have always been changing. And good things can happen when people are forced to depend on each other. I just hope I can be graceful when my life gets uncomfortable.

I can't tell you how freeing it is to know that happiness and comfort are not the whole point of my being here (as in here on this Earth) in the first place. It's good to have a purpose, and to have to make sacrifices for something bigger than me. I'm so glad that I can embrace the harder aspects of being me without feeling vaguely ashamed of the fact that I am not happy and comfortable all the time.

"And that's all I have to say about that."

Sunday, March 1, 2009


Here's a little poem I wrote (you might want to read it note by note..)

This little bit of poesy came to me last summer. It reminds me of my Grandma Cherie, who died a couple years ago. Although I miss her terribly, I can't complain because just knowing her added a richness to my life that not everybody gets to begin with-- it's like complaining about having to go home after a day at Disneyland. Anyway, here it is.

Her garden is a hidden bowl of sunlight.
Raucous colors dance around her as she grubs.
There are no barbs, no weapons, no defenses.
She doesn't know how beautiful she is.

I didn't say it was going to be a long poem (and yes, I know it doesn't rhyme. I sound like Dr. Suess when I try to rhyme). Just think of it as a little verbal sketch.
"As drawn by a true an' lovin' hand"*
If you don't like it, I don't want to know.

Happy March.
*yet another movie line. No fair using google this time!

Thursday, February 12, 2009

Why I think Captain Kirk is cute:

You can stop making those faces (Adrienne!) because I don't mean I think he's cute in the paste-his-face-inside-my-locker sense. It's a different kind of cute, almost the diminutive sense of the word.

I was thinking about this a couple days ago (when I was avoiding homework, which is also what I'm doing right now, by the way). I am often quite embarassed to admit how much I enjoy watching Classic Trek. I can't even stand to have other people in the room while I watch because it's so very ridiculous and full of cheese. I mean even if Kirk didn't tromp around with his gut sucked in, populating his lines with those famously erratic pauses as he alternates between looking bemused, attractive/ed, and heroically angry, there are still the outrageously costumed aliens (shiny fabric+tons of eyeshadow=alien, with the optional misshapen head every now and then-just to spice things up), the ship that sounds like the inside of an old fashioned submarine and looks like someone had a wild night with a bedazzler, and all those poor women officers who stoicly carry on doing whatever it is they do do even though starfleet cruelly refuses to issue them anything in the way of pants. These things are ridiculous and wrong and laughably crude...and I am 99% sure that this is why I like the show so very much.

It's probably the artist in me, gleefully lording it over the disciples of Science that their first majorly popular (at least in America--sorry Dr. Who) science fiction show should be so very silly. I mean, if the modern scientist of the '60s' conception of the greater universe is one in which all the really smart aliens sit around all day waiting for unsuspecting humanoids to wander by and get pulled into some character-testing experiment or other (only to be outwitted/won over by Kirk's raw manliness and cunning), then maybe the scientists of today are not the "god-like smarty-pants"* everyone seems to think they are. (OK- I don't mean to sound harsh or anything, but does anyone else get the feeling that we're all just hoping that unspecified amounts of science will eventually provide the answers to all our problems?)

Also, I think, from a more philosophical standpoint, I am intrigued by the show as a representative of what people in the past imagined the future to be. Like in the 1960 version of "the Time Machine," when the guy made a stop in the 1980s and everyone was walking around in orange jumpsuits and hardhats. It's interesting how, no matter how hard you try, you can never really get a handle on how things are going to turn out. Clearly, the writers of Classic Star Trek figured we'd be zipping around the galaxy before we ever developed a communicator smaller than a credit card, or information storage devices the size of our thumbs.

And then there's the characters and the plot. They're all so simple and broad-stroked and so unashamedly earnest. I can't help liking them. I get the same feeling when a first grader solemnly informs me that if he had two wishes, he would ask for a motorcycle and one hundred cats. In some ways, you can see what's coming a mile away (and feel smart) and then you suddenly get broadsided by some totally outlandish development (and are entertained). Other attempts have been made to expand the Start Trek universe, as it were, but something of that initial ridiculous "naked and unashamed" innocence is lost.

And that is why, no matter how authoritatively Captain Picard commands his Number One to "Make it so," I will always prefer the company of Kirk, Spock, and the rest of the gang.

Well, now I'd better get back to some more serious thinking.

happy Thursday, everyone!

*What movie is that line from?

Thursday, January 22, 2009

A new thought

Hello friends!

I should be working hard on my homework, but it's not happening tonight. Instead, I'm going to talk to you.

I've decided to stop being afraid of people. It's crazy, I know, but I've been doing alot of thinking and that's what I have decided. See, I am not an intimidating personage (at least, I don't think I am- I'm certainly not intimidated by me.) As Piglet says, "It's hard to be brave when your such a small animal." I've generally viewed strangers, and even some acquaintances, as dangerous and, as a sort of defense, given them a wide berth and generally tiptoed around them, avoiding eye contact if possible. But now I think that was a silly plan. Sooner or later, even the smallest creatures get noticed, and it's the scared and lonely ones at the edge of the pack who get eaten first anyway. Plus (and this is a major plus) every time a person encounters another person, it is an opportunity for that person to be treated like a decent human being (whether they feel like a member of the human race or not). How ridiculous would I be if I kept waiting around to be called to some far off mission field when all this time God has been bringing the mission field to me in the form of that punk kid on the skateboard at Wal-Mart whose baggy clothes and black eyeliner are just daring me to treat him like the leper he thinks he is? Should I pass up the opportunity to treat him like he's a valuable person with a future? Heck no! If everyone just treats the kid like he's a menace, sooner or later he's going to act like one (if he hasn't already), but if I can with a simple smile and friendly greeting plant a little seed of doubt in his 'nobody gives a ___ about me, so ___ you all' persona, maybe he'll begin to see things just a little bit differently.

Besides, what is the good of saying I believe in an omnipotent God who loves me, who is the ultimate definition of love, if I'm not going to act like it? If all that is true, and God's Holy Spirit really does live in me, then every place that belongs to me belongs to Him, and everywhere I step is a part of His domain, and in His domain I am priceless...and so is everybody else.

Don't worry, I'm not going to go passing my phone number out to every ne'er-do-well that crosses my path. Being kind to people does not mean being careless, it means seeing (or trying to see) them the way God sees them, and acting accordingly.

Well, sorry if that got a little preachy. It wanted to come, so I let it (which is, according to Pooh Bear, the best way to write).

Saturday, January 17, 2009

Someday, I won't be spending my Saturdays by myself. As fun as it may sound, doing whatever you want whenever you want to is not all it's cracked up to be. Someday, I will be surrounded by people-- husband, kids, the works. Probably I will be very busy arranging things, providing things, disciplining when necessary, enjoying and being enjoyed. And in the midst of all that action and interaction, I hope that I remember what it was like to be alone. I hope that I can appreciate this season that I'm in right now so that when things are different this time will not have been wasted. Because you can really only live one moment at a time, and when I am living this future life that I hope for, I won't be enjoying my own uninterrupted thoughts in my secret room in Mount Vernon where everything I want is within arm's reach and the dishes are done in two minutes.

It has taken me a while to realize that just because things aren't what I planned them to be, it is not a sign of cosmic failure. It just means that, apparently, my plans weren't big enough.

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Guess where I am right now!

Give up?

I'm in my new digs, my secret room in that big ole house up on the hill in Mount Vernon, listening to Paul Simon, sipping a caramel macchiato (sp?) and siphoning off my downstairs neighbor's internets while it rains like the end of the world outside. I heave a great sigh of contentment. (Seriously, I really did just sigh. I'm that pleased!)

For those of you not in the know, I recently moved. Actually, my family helped me move (an adventure worthy of its own post. Sometime when I'm not so relaxed I shall relate the harrowing affair in its entirety. It involves a ton of junk that Sarah hasn't the heart to get rid of, a "one-wheel drive" U-haul, a hotel room, and lots and lots of snow.)

I just had one of those Christmas breaks that are so good for the soul that they leave you feeling ready to take on the world. My mom and dad and brother and I basically got snowed in at my grandpa's house in Port Angeles (the promised land--flowing with creamy soups and prime rib). We consumed a scandalous amount of food (four Costco pumpkin pies!), slid down the hill on giant garbage bags (snow in the face, but still delicious fun!), played card games, figured out the chord changes for a couple of Christmas Carols, watched movies, and snoozed. But the best part, the very best part of it all, was the time we spent just sitting around and talking. It was sweet and rich like expensive dark chocolate. And, to top it off, I got to hold the long awaited Barley* (a.k.a. Greta) on two separate pilgrimages to Walterland!

Well, that's about all I can write right now. Mr. Simon has fallen silent, my frothy caramel-flavored coffee has been sipped to its whipped cream and syrup dregs, and laundry beckons.

"Farewell, old friend[s]...until our next meeting."
(Who says that line, Adrienne? Mine is an evil laugh...)

* 'The Barley' is an affectionate family nickname for my cousin's new baby. Her real name is Greta Cherie Walter. She was just born two and a half weeks ago.