Friday Favorites – “Spring” Break Edition

Spring Break started today.
Or here in Minnesota, what I just call “break.”
It’s currently about 34° — sunny, at least — but this weekend it’s forecast to be in the 20s with some snow.
You know, just the kind of weather you think of when you think of Easter.

I’d love to be able to tell you that we’re headed off to someplace warm and tropical for my daughter’s 10 day spring break, but no can do. To hell with our frozen souls, we say! We’ve toughed it out this long, what’s another six weeks??

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No, we’re staying put in the frozen tundra.
The bitter wasteland of winter.
aka Hell.
I’ll send you a postcard — “Wish you were here!”

Due to some large expenses in the foreseeable future (a fourth car for the college graduate in May since the little sister now needs and drives the third car she left behind; a couple of summer trips; and oh, yeah, another staggering college tuition on the horizon) we’re just headed to our cabin for the week.
Our cold, still snowed-in cabin where the high temp. on Saturday will be 18°.

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And listen, I know prefacing that above sentence with the word “just” is slightly obnoxious. I know I’m lucky to have a cabin to escape to, Easter snow or no Easter snow. And you know how much I love my cabin, so you know that despite my grouching about my Vitamin-D deficient skin still not being able to be exposed to anything warm (other than my gas fireplace, which I may or may not lie in front of in my swimsuit this weekend) I’m still excited for six days of hibernation in my happiest of all places.

But still.

When everyone you know — yes, everyone — is going somewhere that is actually warmed by the sun either this week or in the very near future, it gets under your skin, which let me tell you isn’t easy, being that it’s so dry and cracked.

I’ve come to terms with it, though (isn’t it obvious?) and am currently making my way up north with the car packed full of junk cabin food, a week’s worth of wine (I’ll let you guess how many bottles that is … mostly because I do not want to tell you), a wiped-out-from-just-finishing-a-hellish-third-term 16 year-old, and three snoozing cats drugged out on sedatives.

You know, perfection.
I mean, who needs sand, surf, and sun when you’re lucky enough to have all that, right?

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So today I’m sharing with you some favorites that will get me through the week in my cozy cabin. Throw on some fuzzy socks, grab a snuggie, and settle in with me.
And grab a glass. There’s enough wine for you, too.


Read-a-thon

I don’t remember the last time I had this many actual books to read. I’m trying to get back to reading real books instead of the Kindle versions because I’ve learned that when I read on my iPad I have severe ADD: read a page, check Instagram, read another two pages, check my email, read maybe half a page, check tomorrow’s weather, then give up reading all together and watch something random on Netflix. I’m going to commit to having all devices in another room when I’m reading this week. If anything, it will mean I get in some steps when I inadvertently get up to go check Facebook.

I’m super excited for all of these books … especially the one I’m almost finished with that I left at home, which is why it isn’t in the above photo (that I’m planning to take when I get to the cabin).
GAH.
It’s called The Assistants and it’s by Camille Perri. It’s a fast, fun read. The writing is witty and clever, and I can’t wait to see how the story plays out … NEXT WEEK.
BAH.
It’s only $8.90 on Amazon right now, so go grab it! Just don’t tell me how it ends.

One I remembered to bring and have also read most of is Things I Know by Kelly Corrigan (favorite of all favorite writers) but like all the rest of her books, I like to read them slowly, both because I want to absorb her brilliant words but also because I just don’t want them to end.

Thanks to loyal YMFT follower Karen for the Instagram suggestion of This is How it Always is, which I’m super excited to read after reading the synopsis and reviews. I’ve also heard great things about Erotic Stories for Punjabi Widows, which is Reese Witherspoon’s newest book club pick. And you know if Reese likes it, we will too. #americassweetheart

Reese Witherspoon’s Book Club Pick
A lively, sexy, and thought-provoking East-meets-West story about community, friendship, and women’s lives at all ages—a spicy and alluring mix of Together Tea and Calendar Girls.

Every woman has a secret life . . .

Nikki lives in cosmopolitan West London, where she tends bar at the local pub. The daughter of Indian immigrants, she’s spent most of her twenty-odd years distancing herself from the traditional Sikh community of her childhood, preferring a more independent (that is, Western) life. When her father’s death leaves the family financially strapped, Nikki, a law school dropout, impulsively takes a job teaching a “creative writing” course at the community center in the beating heart of London’s close-knit Punjabi community.

Because of a miscommunication, the proper Sikh widows who show up are expecting to learn basic English literacy, not the art of short-story writing. When one of the widows finds a book of sexy stories in English and shares it with the class, Nikki realizes that beneath their white dupattas, her students have a wealth of fantasies and memories. Eager to liberate these modest women, she teaches them how to express their untold stories, unleashing creativity of the most unexpected—and exciting—kind.

As more women are drawn to the class, Nikki warns her students to keep their work secret from the Brotherhood, a group of highly conservative young men who have appointed themselves the community’s “moral police.” But when the widows’ gossip offers shocking insights into the death of a young wife—a modern woman like Nikki—and some of the class erotica is shared among friends, it sparks a scandal that threatens them all.

And while I’m reading, you can bet your sweet booty I’ll be snuggled in this new favorite:

I’ve given my girls many, many animal onesies over the years. No kidding, they each practically have a zoo’s worth of snuggies in their closets. But last week, for my birthday, they gave me one!

As you can see, I hate it.

Best part? It’s a koala, my spiritest of spirit animals. I mean, any animal that spends its days sleeping and moves slowly is my spirit animal, obviously, but the koala sleeps an average of 22 hours a day, gets to look cute, and basically gets bothered by no one except people who want to give soft belly scratches.

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#tagyourself #toolateIalreadydid

Junk Cabin Food
While I’m snugged down reading this week, I’ll also be eating, naturally. And when we’re at the cabin — especially when we’re hibernating — we eat super healthy.
And by super healthy I mean things like this:

It’s okay to be jealous of my gigantic tub of Costco artichoke dip. I already know June me will be.  I only buy it like twice a year, you guys, usually once if we have cabin guests in the summer and again around the holidays BECAUSE IT IS CRACK — 4,000 CALORIE CRACK. Swear to god, I’d eat the entire tub weekly if I did not have such expensive, cute jeans in my closet.

Oh, and not pictured: the ingredients for the monster cookies my daughter and I are planning on making at some point. Probably about 10 minutes after the pb/chocolate bars run out and right before the Easter candy does.
Suck it, people who are wearing swimsuits this week. I DON’T HAVE TO.

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Bingeworthy
If you know me from this blog you know I love a good TV binge, so I’ll definitely be doing some of that this week as well. Right now my binge of choice is Ozark on Netflix. I’m also motoring my way through season 3 of Jane The Virgin. Throw in a new episode of my new favorite real time show, Rise and I’m set.  (Are you watching this, fans of Jason Katims’ shows — FNL and Parenthood?? If not, you should be. He created this one, too, and it’s got his trademark all over it. Plus, musical theatre. I love it.)

I’d love to go on about the crocheted rainbow blanket I’ll be working on (for me this time!) and the hours of doodling and lettering I’m planning on doing, but we have a bit of an emergency on our hands so I need to wrap this up.

Trust me, you need to keep reading.

So the lane to our cabin hasn’t been plowed and the three snowplow services we called didn’t call us back.
Even they’re so over it, I guess.
I don’t even blame them.
Anyway, after managing to drive the 100 yards through about a foot of snow, thanks to 4WD and Jesus, one of our cats suddenly vomited all over the other two in their cage.

Like, his head exploded kind-of-vomit.

THANKS A LOT, JESUS.

And then, as if they weren’t all what the fuck enough, my husband had to pull them on a sled the next 75 or so yards to the door, his legs breaking through the snow and ice up to his knees about every other step, which made for a very uneven ride, and very angry cats.
Angry, sticky cats.

Turns out, cats don’t like sledding.

Once we got them inside, I took over clean-up duty (side note: if there’s one thing cats hate worse than snow, it’s being cleaned BY A HUMAN) and my husband was faced with the task of unloading the week’s worth of provisions (read: wine) so he had to shovel a path about 8″ deep the entire length of the yard.

It’s a big yard, ya’ll.

End of the story?
After shoveling through the 75+ yards of wet snow and sled-dogging all the tubs of shit we brought to the cabin, his back is completely effed up. Time for me to play nurse and get him an ice pack … and maybe open a bottle of that wine.

If you are reading this on a beach, you better not tell me.
I’ll totally take back that glass of wine I gave you earlier.

#maui2K19



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  • Karen - Happy “spring” break.
    So happy you are reading This is How it Always is..I can’t stop recommending it to everyone. Enjoy
    Now I will go reserve the Punjabi Widows book – I’m a library gal.
    Still in line for the Assistants.
    If it makes you feel better – we still have snow covered lawns too.. (Canada living!)ReplyCancel

    • Michelle - I started it and loved it so much I’m saving it! haha I do that all the time. But I always want a GREAT BOOK our first lake weekend and since it’s not THAT far away (please please please) I want to save it for then! I have to admit, I only made it through about a third of Punjabi Widows. Just didn’t hold my interest eve though it’s a pretty clever story. I’ll probably pick it back up at some point. 60s in the forecast here next week!! YaHOOOO! 🙂ReplyCancel

      • Karen - You are saving it? !…too funny. But I totally get it. Nothing like knowing you have a good book ready for a weekend. Another great weekend read is Happiness for Beginners by Katherine Center – you may have recommended that one…I can’t keep track.
        I’ll send you sunshine vibes if you send me some too.ReplyCancel

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