Tag Archives: friendship

Book Review: The Secret Life of Book Club


Book Club Just Got Real.

Have you ever been a member of a book club? I’ve been in a few over the years – any excuse to escape reality, really.

Because that’s what books do. Crack open the spine of a new novel and suddenly you’re whisked away to post-Napoleonic France to seek revenge on those who have wronged you. You’re a top CIA agent, the deadliest sniper in American history, or the wizard chosen to save magic from a dark end. You’re the talk of the town as a flapper married to F. Scott Fitzgerald or a very hungry caterpillar. Continue reading

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Fabulous Friendships

Mother of pearl that hurt!* It was set strike and Mark had just rammed into me with the corner of a very large section of the stage. (*Likely not the actual phrase used, but this is a family blog.) I got paged (yes, this was back in the day of pagers) several hours later to see how the giant bruise was developing – well, that or to see if I was ok. Continue reading



It all started with marshmallows. There was a distinct hierarchy on the bus and all middle schoolers were expected to comply: sixth graders were the peons – they sat at the front of the bus, eighth graders were high and mighty – they ruled the back with all the maturity of 13 year-old. Seventh graders and other misfits filled out the remaining seats. (Funny that now that I’ve grown older and wiser, the back of the bus makes me queasy.) Continue reading


Muppets Take Monterey: The Royal Wedding (Part I)

By the time I got home from work on Thursday, the muppets were sound asleep. When I woke them up two hours into their good night’s sleep, Search eyed me suspiciously. We headed off to the airport to meet Auntie Beeca and Uncle Bryan. When the Portlandian’s flight landed, I texted Beeca, “I hope your hubbie plays a mean game of Tetris.”

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The First Thanksgiving

Family and Friends

The Muppets First Thanksgiving special was quite a day. We celebrated with family friends and counted our blessings for all we had to be thankful for many times.

The muppets are still too young to really understand what’s going on around them. They’re far more fascinated by the recent discovery that their entire little fist fits into their mouth. But much as the same as it was with Halloween, we celebrated enough for all.

Our feast was being prepared in Sacramento, at Momm’s house. Momm is my college roommate’s mother (two “Ms” since she was the second mom while I was away). I volunteered to bring Seafoam Jello and Chocolate Silk Pie. However, upon further reflection, it dawned on me that Sacramento was likely a three-hour drive and such a trek might not be phenomenally conducive for a Jello dish.

G.G.’s pumpkin bread it was! Growing up, G.G.’s pumpkin bread was the famous staple of the holiday feasts. One of my cousins moved to Italy a few years back. She attempted to recreate Thanksgiving for her fiancés family, to give them a taste of home. G.G.’s pumpkin bread was requested via airmail. It’s that good. Uncle Paul puts it on his Christmas wish list every year. And this is truly saying something for my extraordinarily non-culinary family.

Jon and I decided to depart at dawn so we could spend a full day giving thanks. Naturally, we had no need for an alarm clock. The muppets woke us up at 5 a.m.; we were out the door in record time: by 8 a.m. We’d packed the night before so we wouldn’t be scurrying around in the morning. For a non-overnight, simple day trip, we brought an entire truckload worth of stuff. Thankfully, we managed to squeeze everything into the Pilot and avoid the need for a U-Haul.

Auntie Beeca texted me saying that she might cry with excitement. So I knew right then it was the muppets she was excited to see – not me. Ah, the life of a parent. The gathering consisted of Momm, Auntie Beeca, her husband and one-year-old daughter, Leila. I was just as excited to see her little one.

To the untrained eye, it likely looked as though we were arriving for several months. To the parent of a young child, it appeared as though we were simply dropping in to quickly say hello.

Introductions were made and the celebrating began. Momm (now Nana) fussed over all her grandkids. Leila was mesmerized by the muppets. Her dad didn’t seem terribly thrilled about his daughter’s interest in two very handsome younger men.

As we waited for the bird to cook, the delicious smells began to fill the house, adding to the warmth and cheer. Certainly not fasting before the feast, Search finished his mid-morning snack and arfed. On to outfit No. 2.

We then decided to go for a walk around the lake while Nana focused on foodstuffs. As four thirty-somethings, the walk would likely have taken us 20 minutes. It took us at least an hour to get bundled up to leave the house. With freezing morning temperatures, we were taking extra care to bundle our babes. Finally, we wheeled our way out to the walkway. Then we looked at each other realizing, “It’s not really all that cold anymore…”

After a lovely walk that was really a meandering toddle, we returned to the house for the muppets lunch. Destroy’s digestive system decided to clear itself in preparation for the big meal. There really is no delicate way to change a diaper blowout when you’re a guest in someone’s home. Auntie Beeca just laughed, saying, “You’re family.”

Then it was time. The turkey was ready. There was a frantic scurry (complete with uptempo classical music) as all the sides were heated and plated. Leila seemed to favor the mashed potatoes – although I’m not sure she ate nearly as many as she decided to wear…

Food, family, friends and fun. The muppets first Thanksgiving will be one for the memory books.

I love the holidays!