Cabin in the woods

Last fall my mom and aunt purchased a little cabin up in the mountains. It's a couple miles away and nothing fancy, but a nice place to get away.

It doesn't have electricity, but is on a septic system and has propane powered appliances.

Just a couple hours out of the city, I'm already dreaming of summer (and winter and fall and spring) getaway weekends.

With no cell phone signals, surrounded by forests and on the banks of a river, it's the perfect place to escape the hustle and bustle of daily life for a little unplugged R&R.

And I can't wait for some hiking adventures (like this or this).


The unexpected expected

I had other posts planned for this space that I hadn't gotten around to writing yet, but life got turned upside down this past weekend.

My Grampie (ok, I shared him with a few other people) died on Saturday.

It wasn't completely unexpected -- he wasn't a spring chicken (at 91!) and suffered from dementia -- but it hit me harder than I thought it would.

Grampie had been in a nursing facility for almost three years when he moved in with my parents around Thanksgiving.

And for almost three months, he got to be home.

Then early in the morning on Saturday, with some of his family gathered around him, he took his last breath.

It's been a sad few days, but we've also spent some good time together as a family, laughing, crying, and reminiscing over some of our favorite Grampie memories.

I've written before on the blog about how I wanted to remember this giant of a man.

Today mostly I wanted to say how lucky I am to have been loved by a grandfather who took such delight in his grandchildren.


Catching up

Hi all! I'm alive!

I've been thinking about this space a lot and am more than a little sad that I got out of the habit of posting here. In part because I miss you all but also because I miss having my life documented. 

So why not start now?!

The end of 2014 and the first part of 2015 have been crazy -- so crazy that I'm about 100 blog posts behind. Because I have been reading, just not commenting. (Loser, I know.)

While I get this space back up and running (and organize my thoughts), I thought I'd do a "currently" post to catch you up on life at the moment. 

So here's what I'm currently:

Reading: I actually just finished The Zookeeper's Wife and am probably starting Miss Peregrine's School for Peculiar Children next. A friend suggested a movie themes book club, so we've selected the books that will become movies that we each want to read and then we'll go together to see them in theaters. I'm excited!

Watching: I finally caught up on Downton! A friend and I meet every week for dinner and the latest episode but I was out of town a few weeks in a row. It was so fun to catch up on all the family and servant drama. 

I also finished Parenthood and was really happy with the season finale. Did you watch? What did you think?

Making: Homemade bread. I'm actually waiting for it to finish baking so I can go to bed. So excited to enjoy this for breakfast tomorrow!

Looking forward to: a news trivia night tomorrow. I'm no trivia geek but this one is right up my alley and with a fun group of people. Plus, it's hosted by Ken Jennings. So excited!

Listening to: I've become anti-music in the car and have been listening mostly to podcast -- The Moment with Brian Koppelman is a fave -- but I just started the audiobook Wallflower at the Orgy about Nora Ephron. Any audiobook or podcast recommendations? Send 'em my way!

Wishing: That the Seahawks had won. Yeah, I know that is so a week and a half ago, but it's still sad. I was actually in Phoenix at the stadium for work (more on that later) and it is still shocking to me to think of how the game ended. 

Ready for: my four day weekend. Is tomorrow really only Wednesday? I'm headed up to meet my parents at my mom and aunt's new cabin. It's a little basic but cozy and I'm excited for lots of mountain adventures in our future. 

That's it for me! What's new currently for you?


Summer reading list

First of all, hi. Life has a way of taking over sometimes -- funny how that happens. 

I didn't mean to disappear from blogging for months. A few days turned into a week, etc., and then I felt like I should have some big reappearance post. 

Instead, I'm skipping that. Too much pressure. I'd much rather just start blogging again. 

Today, a visit to a book store netted me three brand new books. I start browsing and it's hard for me to say no.

But I also knew I had one or two books at home I'd been meaning to read. 


Make that 19.

So I've officially banned myself from buying new books. 

Really, I blame my Kindle. It's too darn easy to pick new books to read without leaving my bed. 

No longer. 

Instead it's time to get serious about this stack. 


A reminder to be thankful

I'm drained -- physically and emotionally. It's been a hard few weeks in our area -- news you may have heard about where you are. A news helicopter crashed a week then a pretty major landslide. Added to that I've taken on some freelance work (which I'm enjoying, but is one more thing to manage).

After the Seahawks season followed by Olympic coverage (and only a couple extra days off to recover a little), I could not be looking forward to this weekend more.

And while I may share more about life recently in the coming days/weeks/whenever I actually get to it, for now I wanted to focus on the positive -- on the things I am so thankful for amid all the tragedy we've been covering.

(As an aside, while it's been a tough few weeks for me, I know there are others personally impacted and suffering in ways I can't even imagine. And I've been humbled to help tell some of their stories.)

Things I am oh-so thankful for:

- Air popped popcorn: I know this seems silly, but a couple weeks ago I impulsively bought an air popper at Fred Meyer (a trip that accidentally resulted in three new kitchen appliances -- a story for another day). It may be the best purchase I've made in months. I've definitely indulged in a bowl or to for dinner recently.

- My amazing coworkers. People have stepped up, worked longer hours, taken on extra responsibilities without complaint and done such great work. Additionally, our parent company (which only acquired our group of TV stations a few months ago) has sent in reinforces. We couldn't have done it alone.

- Time with friends and family. Not only did I get to spend a few days last week up at my parents relaxing and enjoying puppy snuggles, but I've also had a few fun get togethers with friends, including one who visited from the other side of the country.

- A new vacuum that didn't cost a thing. My old vacuum was a Craigslist purchase my dad tracked down. It was starting to smell like the motor was burning out. While I (a.k.a. my dad) had started looking for something better, a friend of my dad's gave me one he was selling in a garage sale. So wonderful.

- Amazon Prime. Another silly one, but so helpful. My new vacuum needed bags and while it took two tries to buy the right ones, coming home today to vacuum bags and getting a chance to actually clean my carpets made me ridiculously happy (my 16-year-old self would just be shaking her head).

What have you been thankful recently?


1 down, 39 to go

Don't look now, but two days in a row. (What you don't see is me giving myself a premature pat on the back.)

Just kidding. Sorta.

With today being Ash Wednesday, I thought I'd share my plans for Lent.

I know this isn't a place I usually get very personal, but every once in a while I go there. This is one of those times.

Duh, duh, duh.

Sorry, it felt climatic.


I don't always observe Lent, at least not in terms of giving something up.

But this year I feel different about it. First, of all, I've let my faith take a bit of a back to life in the past year.

And secondly -- let's be honest -- I spend way too much time on my phone. Especially in the evenings if I'm home alone.

So I've decided I want to make better use of my time. My hope: to put down my phone in the evenings (unless it's to communicate with someone) and to spend time doing other things, including a quiet time to read my Bible.

And hopefully, by the end of 40 days, I won't find myself reaching for the phone every chance I get.

Night one hasn't been the smoothest. But I have caught up on blog reading and commenting a little, written this and am off for a little quiet time.

And hopefully it will only get better.

Do you observe Lent? Any plans to this year?


I'm alive, I'm alive, I'm alive

Well, my radio silence lasted a little longer than planned.

Once my month (or so) of craziness at work ended with the close of the Olympics, I devoted my free time to catching up with people I hadn't seen in too long. I also took a fun getaway with some friends and took care of some necessary life tasks (doctors, taxes, cleaning and all that fun stuff).

But I'm back now with more plans to blog. And while things have been radio silence from my end, I have been keeping up with your blogs, even though I haven't done much commenting.

I can't wait to actually get back to interacting with all of you though. I don't really enjoy being passive in the blogging community.

I had hoped for more than an obligatory "hoped you didn't forget about me" post tonight, but I had an appointment at the eye doctor this evening and my dilated eyes are making it a little uncomfortable to stare at my computer screen.

In the meantime, here's a pretty picture (from yesterday, because today was just rainy and gray).