Category: random

staycation day

I don’t know if it really counts as a “staycation.” But we took today “off” from everything…well, as much as adults can when they stay home. We slept in a little, had breakfast, ran a few errands (so not vacation-y), got some Christmas decorations(!), went to the BEACH, and met Josh & Kirsten for dinner.

All in all, a relaxing day.

Except for the fact that my sweet husband, who has two road trips and a performance this week, has been hanging my new curtain rods for the last hour and a half. Which leads me to tonight’s thankful list:

1. Curtains
They’re not really my thing. I don’t have a vision for them. I had them hanging at our house in Illinois purely out of necessity. When we moved last year, I never hung any. And when we moved this summer, I knew I needed some, as we have a huge open window facing, well, the trees and the swamp. But I just now got around to hanging some. Thanks to my friend Vicki for her bags o’ curtains (including a few that matched my kitchen & living room perfectly), my level-using husband, and Old Time Pottery {Barn} for their cheapy curtain rods. Now when Rod is out of town, I won’t worry that the clown from It is going to have his face pressed against the window…

2. The Beach.
Again. I know. I just can’t get over its beauty, its peace, and its free-ness. It is without a doubt my favorite place in the world to go. And I love that my girls are growing up loving it. In fact, they are following the 3 rules we have naturally come to grasp when we get there:

1. Reach walkway
2. Remove shoes

3. Thankful Lists
I seriously love reading what everyone else is thankful for this month. The range runs from families and good health to music to Aldi (oh, South Carolina friends, I so wish we had Aldi here!) It inspires me to read them. They make me think of other things to be grateful for.

4. Our pediatrician in Chicago
We haven’t seen Dr. C in almost 2 years now, but I still adore him. Having 2 babies in a row meant a lot of visits for a few years straight, and we got to know him pretty well. Anyway, when he knew our health insurance was going away, he stocked us up on Albuterol, which is still good through next year. KK had had to have a few breathing treatments this weekend. She is fine, and I am thankful Dr. C. helped us learn how to read her signs as well. Even though we have insurance now (SO THANKFUL!), it’s comforting to know we can take care of KK when she just needs a li’l somethin’.

5. Cinnamon Streusel French Toast at Crackerbarrel
‘nough said.


Today, we all give thanks for the soldiers who serve our country. Without them, we wouldn’t even have the freedom to say thanks for the things nearest to our own hearts.

Sweet Valley…not so confidential

I grew up in the 80s, at the library.

One of my favorite SVH books. Look how self-righteous Elizabeth looks caught between the conniving Amy and admiring Enid...

Between the ages of 9ish and 13ish, I could not get enough Sweet Valley High. Turns out, most of my friends, my age, whether I knew them at that time or not, felt the same way.

When the library didn’t have the books, I would go to the book section of Kmart and read them in segments (I think I only owned a handful…until I bought every single one the Homewood library was selling in 2005, which were sadly/tragically lost when our basement flooded. It turned the moldiness/smelliness of those books into a literal state).

We talk about them; they remain a pop culture reference in our daily lives. Aquamarine eyes? Check. Gold lavaliere necklaces? Check. Red Fiat Spider? Check. 1Bruce1? CHECK.

In case you, too, wondered what a gold lavaliere necklace looks like...

A junior year of high school that spanned many long-term relationships/break-ups/reunions (Todd Wilkins or Jeffery French? I still vote Jeff. Todd was a weeny, but then, so is Elizabeth Wakefield)? CHECK. Did you cry as hard as I did and warn everyone not to sniff cocaine if she had a heart murmur when Regina Morrow died? SHUDDER…. I will never forget the horror of it all.

(I still think Nicholas Morrow was the best of Elizabeth’s suitors. And yes, I was more Elizabeth than Jessica in my teens. I was more Jessica post-high school. But that’s another blog).

Were you sucked in by the Jessica-is-dead dream sequence in Special Edition Winter Carnival? Were you so happy when put-upon Enid and left-in-the-dust Jeffrey got together? Did you hate Lila? Did you think Elizabeth so crushed on Mr. Collins? Did you think Jessica was pure evil with her stupid brown room?

Red Fiat Spider, with plenty of room for the Wakefield twin's long, bronze legs
Red Fiat Spider, with plenty of room for the Wakefield twins' long, bronze legs

And like me, did you eventually give up? (I stopped reading before they made it to senior year).

AND, for the love of integrity, do you realize that Francine Pascal DID NOT write the books? (Her ghost writer was listed inside every copy… Kate Williams, who I hope has made millions and I bet is very happy to never receive credit for that shlock).

Another favorite of mine, though it always bothered me that Brunette Jessica looked like Cross-Dresser Jessica on the cover

ANYwho, now that I am out of the closet, I will tell you about three very exciting things having to do with Sweet Valley High today, in case you live under a rock and missed them, or in case, unlike me, you spend more time reading hard-hitting news and real books than you do nostalgic trash:

1 – This is the funniest blog ever, dedicated to SVH and other garbage we loved as Gen-X kids (language warning / time-suck warning).

2 – Diablo Cody (who wrote Juno) is making a SVH movie. Imagine the fun!

3 – THIS JUST IN. There is a new book entitled Sweet Valley Confidential, which takes place when the characters are 27 years old. I had read it was coming but forgotten about it until I got my new Entertainment Weekly today, and shook with laughter whilst reading their review.

So there it is, friends. My weekend gifts to you. Have fun wasting time, and may you have a weekend as idyllic as the Steve and Alice Wakefield’s Spanish-tiled home.