Wednesday, May 2, 2018

For The Love of Books

I love books.


Not just the function of books.  But real books with paper pages.  And sometimes with beautiful photographs or sketches.  Hard cover, paperback; that doesn't matter.. but BOOKS.  Not books you read online, not even Kindle books.  Books that smell like paper.  Even some with a touch of mustiness... REAL books.

Book chair by Alexander Love.  You can buy it at etsy! 

At one time we had hundreds of books, actually we had several thousand books.  My first husband and I were both book collectors; our first date included a trip to a used book store with thousands of cheap books.  My ex-husband built bookshelves everywhere...  We had library stacks in the basement, library stacks in the extra rooms on the third floor; the closets that we didn't need for clothing or storage were turned into floor-to-ceiling book shelves.    

At one time I had these books pretty well organized.  Fiction was in the basement, arranged alphabetically by author.  Greek and Roman history were in the back room of the third floor.  Psychology and philosophy were also in that back room.

When our son was born, we added more books.  Books about pregnancy and child-rearing.  Beautiful hard-covered picture books for children.  When I returned to teaching, we added shelves of books about child development, education, and teaching.

Well, life changes.

Sunday, April 1, 2018

Happy Easter! Happy Passover! Easter Bunny detours....

The Easter Bunny gets a taste for something green and makes a detour:






Happy Easter!  Happy Passover!
More Easter humor HERE and HERE....

Easter foods and treats?  Boozy bunnies HERE and HERE, Easter egg Jello and pudding shots HERE and HERE, and simple Easter cakes HERE and HERE.

Thursday, March 8, 2018

St. Patrick's Countdown: Nine Days until St. Patrick's Day!

St. Patrick's Day falls on a Saturday this year; giving fans of the holiday -- Irish or those who are just Irish for the day -- extra time to celebrate and wear green!


We do know that everybody is Irish on St. Patrick's Day.. Actually though, tens of millions of people in the United States have Irish heritage.. including many millions who are unaware of their Irish roots.

There's another reason that so many celebrate the Saint:  St. Patrick's Day means that Spring is just around the corner and that's reason enough to celebrate, even if you don't have a proverbial drop of Irish blood.  But it is usually still pretty darned cold in Chicago, so we still need to wear coats when we watch the parade, watch the Chicago River being dyed green, or engage in some bar-hopping or pub-crawling or green-beer-drinking.


No idea where this vintage St. Patrick's Day card came from, but I found it at one of my favorite Facebook pages, Nanalulu's Linens and Handkerchiefs

Irish parades in various cities:

Chicago:  Listings for Chicago St. Patrick's Day festivities can be found HERE and HERE.

Atlanta touts Savannah as preparing for the "Nation's second largest St. Patrick's Day parade" HERE.  (If so, I had no idea.)

Boston:
  Well, we know that people in Boston celebrate St. Paddy's Day.  Try this link for more information.

I'll add information about celebrations in various cities as I come across it. 

Irish (or kind of Irish) food and drink:

Two articles about Irish Soda Bread can be found at Cheese, Chocolate, and Other Delights:
  1. Traditional Irish Soda Bread HERE.
  2. Enhanced Americanized Irish Soda Bread HERE.

I've also got some great recipes for homemade Irish cream liqueur, Irish Stew, and a few others, some traditional recipes, some just fun.  So check back! 

I've already published this very faux-Irish (but very green)
dessert that will make a colorful addition to any St. Patrick's Day celebration:       
Original of this from Taste of Home, recipe reproduced HERE.

Wednesday, March 7, 2018

St. Patrick's Countdown: Ten Days until St. Patrick's Day!


St. Patrick's Day falls on a Saturday this year; giving fans of the holiday -- Irish or those who are just Irish for the day -- extra time to celebrate and wear green!   


We do know that everybody is Irish on St. Patrick's Day.. Actually though, tens of millions of people in the United States have Irish heritage.. including many millions who are unaware of their Irish roots.


There's another reason that so many celebrate the Saint:  St. Patrick's Day means that Spring is just around the corner and that's reason enough to celebrate, even if you don't have a proverbial drop of Irish blood.  But it is usually still pretty darned cold in Chicago, so we still need to wear coats when we watch the parade, watch the Chicago River being dyed green, or engage in some bar-hopping or pub-crawling or green-beer-drinking.


No idea where this vintage St. Patrick's Day card came from, but I found it at one of my favorite Facebook pages, Nanalulu's Linens and Handkerchiefs

Thursday, March 1, 2018

How Long Until Daylight Savings Time Begins? Click Below!





Click HERE for the number of Days and Hours Until Daylight Savings Time!


Daylight Savings Time for 2018 begins Sunday, March 11th!

Yes, friends!  We are almost there!  Only one completely dark weekend left and one more dark week.  (I'm writing this on the evening of February 28th, 2018, around 8:30 p.m. Central Standard Time.)  

We've noticed earlier evenings even though we've had many grey days lately:  When it is sunny out, it is still light until after 5 p.m. 

But on Sunday evening March 11th....

We Spring Ahead!  Daylight Savings Time in 2018 starts Sunday, March 11th.  We need to move our clocks ahead one hour on Saturday night and we get one less hour of sleep, but it will seem worth it when we notice that we can still see our hands in front of our faces at 7 p.m.!  Enjoy!


T
So:  Turn your clocks FORWARD Saturday night, March 11th, before you go to bed.  Spring ahead!!




Saturday, February 10, 2018

Valentine's Day Strikes Fear!

Valentine's Day strikes fear into the hearts of strong men everywhere.      

Let's just address this head on:

For many people, especially men but women too, there is nothing pleasant about planning Valentine's Day. They don't know what is expected of them; they feel that the wrong thing will be held against them; they feel that they don't have enough money to plan a "proper" Valentine's Day... and they are really tempted to break up with their girlfriend or pick a fight with their wife the week before Valentine's Day just to get out of the whole thing.

Here's a question from a reader:
Q: Hi Jo... It's almost Valentine's Day, and I'm a nervous wreck. I've been with my girlfriend for about six months now, and we are talking about moving in together. We are getting more serious by the day. But I panic around Valentine's Day! My ex-wife always seemed disappointed after Valentine's Day, and we usually fought afterwards. I thought that dinner and flowers was an acceptable way to spend Valentine's Day, but she seemed to want something more or "different"...... How do I guarantee that my new girlfriend will be satisfied without breaking the bank? And what do I do if she seems displeased?  ... Scared
These oxidized Copper Heart Brooches by Rough Magic were found at Etsy a few years back, but they appear to be unavailable now.  
Answer: Have you tried a hot air balloon ride? Or a train ride on the Orient Express? What about 4 carat pink diamond earrings? O.K., I'm joking. Let's be realistic here.

Scared, if she truly likes you for who you are and things are going well.. and she's a decent woman.... there isn't much you can do to screw up Valentine's Day.... except perhaps to forget the whole thing.


It would probably be best to talk to her well before the big day. Does she expect a big production? A dinner and flowers? If so, a fancy dinner? Maybe she dislikes the Valentine's Day dinner scene (as I do) and she's planning on cooking for you. But don't let things fester.. If she's as great as you think and hope she is, she will be happy to talk about her expectations and what might be reasonable. Don't let your experiences with your ex-wife color your experiences with this one. The ex may have been spoiled, demanding, and petty. Perhaps that's why she is an ex?

My sense is that, for most women, flowers, a bit of candy, and perhaps a small gift (according to your budget), are more than enough.
By the way, she should be doing something for you as well.. A small gift, your favorite candy, a home-cooked meal. Valentine's Day shouldn't be a one way street!

(Cross posted from Love Stuff by Jo)

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