Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Books, books and more books.

I love to read.

I love good books.

I share this love of reading with my sister and Sophia, and we all get it from my mother.

My mother was a voracious reader.

She read Harlequin romance novels.  I totally remember them, thin books with a couple posed in a romantic embrace...the woman's bosom falling, pushing or somehow close to exposure and clearly the woman enjoyed/was tormented by it.  There were hundreds of them...she got them from the library sales for a quarter or something. She also read Gone with the Wind, which she passed on to me when I was about 17 or 18.  I loved it...I feel in many ways I am Scarlett...daughter of a rich plantation owner...lily white skin...green eyes...see the connection?  My mother also read books by Pearl S. Buck, and F. Scott Fitzgerald, and Robert Mitchum, and I am sure more interesting things than just trashy romance novels...but she did love them.

We all have our genre.

I decided that this summer I would read all the books on my shelf that I have never made it all the way through.  Those just happen to be the ones that aren't novels.  They are the ones that might teach me something.  I wonder why I never read them?

I am about halfway through the pile I wanted to read...my determination failing.

So I thought I would post about it so that I would be inspired to continue...to persevere.

I may have bitten off more than I can chew.

 Do you see one that doesn't fit the bill of non-fiction?

This one fiction, but so good!  It is about following your dream...and the nature of the universe.

I think I read this on a trip I took to Costa Rica...I will have to see when I finally get to it.

This one is fiction too...but a great American Novel for sure.  The young author of this book took his own life before it was published.  The manuscript was turned down countless times and he was discouraged because he felt it was such a great work of humorous fiction.  He had other problems, but the rejection was too much for him.  After his death, his mother took it to publishers and after 6 years of trying...finally got it published...to wide literary acclaim.

Marianne Williamson...a blast from the past.  I read her book, A Woman's Worth when I was about 26 and it changed my life.

This one I want to read for obvious reasons...but I just can't bring myself to do it.

I gave the Thich Nhat Hanh book to Marcus about a million years ago.  I stuck it in his suitcase one time when he was leaving for a business trip.  It was surprise. 

I like nature...so I want to read this one.

I just finished, A New Earth, I loved it and it was the follow up to, The Power of Now...so I might skip that one.  I figure the one I just read has all the same info.

I have had a hard time finishing this one because I feel like it is all stuff I already am aware of.  But I am sure there are things for me to learn...I should push on.

And did you see...one of these kids is doing his own thing?  

That's right...HARRY...HARRY POTTER is doing his own thing!
Now it is unfortunate that this series has been so commercialized and over marketed.  
This is an epoch journey through human conciousness...told through a magical teenager.  It is filled with good, bad, tragedy, laughter, love, honor, truth, dignity, evil, betrayal...it has it all.  

This series has been a huge part my family.  I didn't let Kai read it until he was in 5th grade, I didn't think that he was ready.  But once he picked it up...he was hooked.   We eagerly awaited books 5, 6 and 7 together...staying up late reading them in a day or two.  Sophia was lucky, once she started reading them,   they were all in print and so she go to read them all back to back...no waiting.

We have slowly made our way through the movies after we were all done with the books.  Movies are never as good as the books, especially these ones.  But none the less we enjoy them.  The final movie is coming out in October or November, and although it is broken up into two movies, one to be released this year and one next year...this is a final chapter.  It kinda feels to me like the closing chapter in the era of my kids childhood.  The end of the Magic so to speak.  It makes me sad...really I am sad about the last Harry Potter movie...and it isn't even happening yet.

To prepare for this momentous event, I am brushing up on the last book, refreshing my memory.

One thing that I do know...I was right about Snape.

Monday, July 26, 2010

Glitter and Glue

So this year I had a birthday.

Way back in March...March 17th to be exact.  St. Patty's Day.  St. Patrick is the patron saint of Ireland and is said to have driven snakes out of the country side during a particularly rough infestation.  And I hate  really dislike snakes.  I find that very interesting that I was born on his birthday.  He must have done other things to become a patron saint, but I don't know about anything else...just the snakes.

How does one become a patron saint?  I will have to look that up and share that knowledge with you.

Any way...I turned 35 this year.  No biggie really, age is just a state of mind...until 40.

Birthdays aren't really that big a deal here around Chez DeLap.  We celebrate small...dinner, cake, gifts.

I really think that our birthdays are really more about our mothers.  They are the ones who did all the work.  Marcus told me that while his grandfather was alive, he would buy his wife flowers every time one of their girls had a birthday.  The same year he told me that, I read an article about Jamie Lee Curtis, who said she called her mother every year on her birthday to thank her mother and tell her she loved her.

I became aware that my birthday was more about my mother than me after my mother had already passed away.  And my family does not honor me on the kids birthdays.  Bastards...

So on my birthday this year, I chose to do something so frivolous and indulgent and deeply nourishing...so that no one had to honor me on any day of the year...because I honored myself.  And in honoring myself, I felt I had honored my mother and the gift of Life and the gift of Love she gave me.

Yes...on my birthday this year I spent the whole day playing with glitter and glue.  And there wasn't any good reason to do so.  I just wanted to.  

I took old post cards and birthday cards and thank you cards that I have kept because I liked them so much and turned them into bookmarks and pretty things...pretty things with glitter.

It was certainly Happy Birthday to me! 

And then my family came through with the loot!

From my dad, via suggestion and purchasing and shipping of my sister.

Marcus knows how much I like money...because I keep telling him.

He also paid attention when we were at an antique store a few days before my birthday.

And Nava...she knows how much I love cookbooks.

And these are like the cookbook bibles.

So on a religious note...

Honor yourself, and not just on your birthday. 

 Because when you honor yourself you are honoring the work and the love that your mother went through to get you here.

Honor yourself...and maybe something glittery may happen!

Friday, July 23, 2010

Berry Lovely

I posted  on my Facebook page the other day that I went raspberry picking and then I made jam.

Well...I really did do that.  Honestly...

On my excursion...these were my companions.

As you can clearly see...they were very excited to join me.  
Notice the earphones Sophia is using?  They block out all instructions.

Then they warmed up.

So much so that they went as far away from me as they could.
Good riddance! 

Apparently I was causing them to miss calls from very important people and taking up valuable time they could be using to play on the computer.  
How awful of me...so insensitive and selfish.

The kids saw our day like this.

I however, I was looking at this.

And these.

Eventually we all got to the top of our buckets, with a little encouragement and help.

And look...we were even proud of ourselves.  Imagine that?
They still don't like me though.

Once we came home.  I went to work.

I like berries, especially raspberries and blueberries because there isn't very much work to do to use them, like pitting and peeling.  I don't like doing extra work I don't have to.

Aren't they pretty?

Ever make jam?  It is soooo much fun!  Way more fun than laundry and dishes.



I made 13 of these scarlet gems.  I am all set for winter on the jam front.  
Plus I froze two giant gallon ziplock full the whole berries.
Squirrels ain't got nothing on me!

It was Kai's birthday yesterday.  So I did this too.

Birthday breakfast in bed.  I didn't let him eat it in bed...but it was taken to him in bed.

Sophia so graciously made her brother's birthday cake...and used the berries.

And I made myself a little afternoon parfait after all my hard work.

I am savoring the last few berries I have in fridge...they are mine...all mine.

Thursday, July 22, 2010


It's pretty dangerous around my house.

I live in the wilds of Oregon, on acres of open plains and dense lush forest where I encounter wildlife daily.

No... I don't.

I live about 5 block from the University of Oregon...home of the Ducks.

I can see into my neighbors windows.

But still, sometimes I fear from my life.

Like when one of these shows up.

It almost bit my face and sent me to the hospital with it's venom fangs.

Alright...not really.  I was standing on the rock wall screaming while I bossed Marcus on how to take pictures of it.

I hate snakes.  I really, really dislike them...I know a certain someone in my life that is opposed to the word hate...she thinks it's too strong of a word to use in everyday life.  This certain someone happens to be Kai's girlfriend and a sweetie pie.  I have lots of respect for her and I have so much learn from her...so I am taking her lead on this one.  But...has she ever seen a snake?  I mean really...it's eyes?

I don't even like snake skin wallets or shoes...or even purses.

Enough about me, back to the snake.

We would never have know the snake was here, but that our cat was making a big fuss and led us right to him. 
 Good kitty.

This cat...Kitty Gato is pretty bad ass.  

But he gets kinda tired though.  I know how he feels.

One thing is for sure...the snake did not like the cat...at all.

Marcus wouldn't let the cat kill the snake.  He let him play with it for a while and then he chased the cat away.

  If it had been up to me, you all would have been getting snake skin wallets for Christmas.