Favorite Poetry {Spin Cycle}

Taking a dirt trail into the middle of the wilderness; for some reason, this has always appealed to me.

Independence Mine

I like the idea of being able to disappear into nature; to take the road less traveled. My favorite poems reflect this desire.

The Road goes ever on and on
Down from the door where it began.
Now far ahead the Road has gone,
And I must follow, if I can,
Pursuing it with eager feet,
Until it joins some larger way
Where many paths and errands meet.
And whither then? I cannot say.
~J.R.R. Tolkien

When I was much younger, I loved walking the trails behind my grandparents’ house by the hilly banks of a river in Iowa. Back in those woods, it was easy to forget that civilization was just around the bend.

grandparents' house

The Road Not Taken

Two roads diverged in a yellow wood,
And sorry I could not travel both
And be one traveler, long I stood
And looked down one as far as I could
To where it bent in the undergrowth;

Then took the other, as just as fair,
And having perhaps the better claim,
Because it was grassy and wanted wear;
Though as for that the passing there
Had worn them really about the same,

And both that morning equally lay
In leaves no step had trodden black.
Oh, I kept the first for another day!
Yet knowing how way leads on to way,
I doubted if I should ever come back.

I shall be telling this with a sigh
Somewhere ages and ages hence:
Two roads diverged in a wood, and I—
I took the one less traveled by,
And that has made all the difference.

~Robert Frost

And yet I know, if I truly disappeared into the wilderness, I would miss civilization very much.

Ode to French Fries

Oh, french fries, you’re glorious,
even though you’re calorious,
You simply are my favorite food.

Share you, I’ll never
Even though it will ever
Be said that I’m rude.

No ketchup, please,
I’d rather have cheese,
Or just sprinkle you with plenty of salt.

Although I just love your taste,
You really add to my waist,
Our love affair certainly must halt!

Skins on or nak-ed,
Fried, but not bak-ed,
Thick or thin, still I adore you.

After much consideration,
I’ll try moderation.
My love for you remains true!

~Ginny Marie

Who are your favorite poets?
Link up your poems any day this week!

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The 100 and The Martian {Spin Cycle}

Why am I so drawn to a good apocalypse story? Twenty years ago, I adored the mini-series The Stand with Molly Ringwald, which was about life after a deadly virus killed most of the population. A year ago, I became entranced with The Walking Dead, which takes it up a notch and has a deadly virus turn people into zombies.

Now I’m hooked on The 100, another apocalypse story. This time, Earth was ruined by nuclear warfare, and mankind fled to a space station. When the space station starts to fail, 100 juvenile delinquents are sent to the surface to see if Earth is survivable. The premise of the story reminds me of the criminals sent to a colony in Australia. I’ve just spent two weeks watching every episode I could!

The100characterposter” by Source. Licensed under Fair use via Wikipedia.

This obsession with these kind of stories is puzzling; I also love a good romantic comedy, the exact opposite of shows like The 100. Ed and I watched The Switch with Jennifer Aniston and Jason Bateman on Valentine’s Day. We both thought it was very cute and funny. We agreed that the lice scene was even funnier since we have lived though our own lice experience at home!

The MartianThe Martian by Andy Weir was another binge this week. I couldn’t put this book down! I read it when I should have been doing other things, such as feeding my children. An astronaut is accidentally thought dead and left behind on Mars. His struggle to survive on such an inhospitable planet is an amazing read.

What have you been binging on lately? Link up your post here, and be sure to visit our other Spinners!

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It’s Not Summer {Spin Cycle}

It has been some week. We had two days off of school for extreme wind chills. I gladly stayed home because I was sick with the “fever and cough” that’s been going around. I’m afraid I’ve been mostly absent from my blog and from your excellent posts! I can’t tell you how excited I am to see that TWELVE of you linked up your Word of the Year!

I just have had this bone-numbing weariness hit me this week. Trying to care for my family while being sick is hard. Fortunately, Lily and Emmy are 10 and 7 now and they know how to entertain themselves. After sleeping late and watching TV on Wednesday, I suggested they get out the Legos to build houses for their new little animal toys that they got for Christmas. They spent the rest of the day happily building and playing!

Some other wonderful things happened. We saw a coyote in the back yard sniffing around for food. I wanted to see him dig up a chipmunk, but he moved on before he caught anything. I felt better yesterday afternoon, and the girls and I actually went to a movie theater with some friends to see Annie. I thought it was cute and the girls absolutely loved it! They’ve been singing “It’s a Hard Knock Life” and “You’re Never Really Dressed Without a Smile” ever since.

And so, you see, I never actually came up with my own Word of the Year. On Monday, I posted my word from last year–schedule–but I still hadn’t picked my word for this year. At first I was going to pick “inspire” but it just didn’t seem right.

As I was looking out the window this afternoon at the cold, icy snow and listening to the wind whip around my chimney, it felt like summer never happened at all. I felt like I was still stuck in last year’s polar vortex and we’ve always had to bundle up with down coats and scarves and hats before even setting foot outside. Don’t forget the gloves, or your fingers might fall off! It seems like we’re in the middle of an eternal winter.


I have the perfect word for 2015: SUMMER! That’s what I need; a summer-like attitude and summer energy. Summer will bring warmth to my writing and my blog. It will light up my house and make the housework easier. Having Summer as my word will help me remember that while it’s a long way off, summer will return again.

And as I was shoveling snow off the sidewalk today, the sun was shining and I noticed that yes, the days are getting longer, minute by minute every day. Summer will be here before we know it!

Please be sure to visit the other Spinners to see what their wonderful Words of the Year are!

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Why You Should Go to Bishop, California

Road Trip paper (2)

Bishop is in the Central part of California, right between Yosemite National Park and Death Valley. Sometimes on vacation, we just stay in a place as a stopping ground to make our drive shorter. After driving through Yosemite, we swung up to Bodie State Park and decided to stay in Bishop before heading to Death Valley. (All of this was planned by Ed before our trip. He doesn’t leave much to chance! Ed always checks out the restaurants in town before he makes any hotel reservation. Food is Ed’s top priority! When he read the good reviews for the best restaurant in town–the bowling alley–he couldn’t resist the challenge and booked Bishop, California!)

We had reservations at the Creekside Inn in Bishop, and we were a little worried that the pictures we saw online were too good to be true. A few years ago, we made a reservation at a hotel for a room which had a kitchenette. The online photo made the room look, well, roomy. It was not. We had to shove the TV under the counter to make room for Lily’s pack -n- play and poured milk on our cereal while sitting on the bed. Calling it a “kitchenette” was very misleading.

The Creekside Inn, however, was everything the website said it was! A charming creek runs through the Inn’s property, and there are plenty of chairs and tables next to the creek. The weather was beautiful, and we sat outside to celebrate Emmy’s birthday. She opened her present while we relaxed next to the creek.

by the creek

For Emmy’s birthday dinner, we actually did eat at the Back Alley Bowl and Grill. It looked like a bowling alley and it sounded like a bowling alley, but wow! They served us excellent steaks and shrimp! The food was really good, AND most importantly for the birthday girl, the dessert was fabulous!
bowl and steak

Our room had a balcony facing the creek. Ed read a bedtime book to the girls out on the balcony first, and after we tucked them in for the night, we sat outside listening to the creek with a bottle of wine. It was a beautiful night!

creek at nightHave you ever been to Bishop, California?





Long Days

Parenting: the days are long but the years are short.

I just read this quote on Facebook, and it suits what I was thinking tonight. I’m so tired and just want to kids to go to bed, and yet Emmy was giving me her “cute face.” She resists bedtime right up to the minute her head hits the pillow. As I carried her to her room, I thought that as tired as I am, it won’t be long until she’s too big for me to carry her. It won’t be long at all.

The days are long indeed, but the years, they simply fly.


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