BAWC Week 17: Bird by Bird

I first read Anne Lamott five or six years ago, when my mom gave me her copy of Traveling Mercies.  It really struck me at the time because it dealt with what my coworker referred to as ‘dark’ issues and the struggle to find faith.  At the time, I was wading through my [...]

Quest for the Perfect Pizza Dough, part 1

One of my New Year’s resolutions was to find a really good, from-scratch pizza dough.  Why?  1. Because I love pizza (and I aspire to someday wear a muumuu), but 2. I am too cheap to buy it.

In my perusals of cookbooks and recipe websites I’ve come across dozens of pizza dough recipes, but for [...]

The Longest Train Ride of My Life (so far)

I left Chicago at 2 pm on a Wednesday.  And then I arrived in Olympia, Washington at 7pm on Friday.  And boy, let me tell you, I was ready to GET OFF THE TRAIN.

In my memory it isn’t quite so terrible.  It was: 2 nights of an uncomfortable sleeping situation; surprisingly good coffee from the [...]

BAWC Week 16: One Hundred Years of Solitude

Most people who consider themselves Readers, when you mention One Hundred or Gabriel Garcia Marquez, gush enthusiastically.  They will talk about magical realism, or epic family sagas or the eloquence or the imagination.

I however, will not.

This is one of those books that everyone says ‘You have to read,’ but to be completely honest, [...]

The Weird Roommate Situation

I know I’ve been promising to tell you about the weird roommate situation in Chicago.  It was going to get just a brief mention, but it was weird on so many levels that I realized it needed a very long post of its own.

Now, I have had weird roommates before.  There was the girl who [...]

Birthday Shortbread Cookies

I’m a big fan of homemade food gifts, and luckily for me most people I know really like Food.

My dad is one such person who likes Food.  But not just any Food: Simple Food.  Usually White Food.  (Example: some days for lunch he will just make a big bowl of instant mashed potatoes.  Or a [...]

Chicago Day 2.5: Lies and a Drug Deal

Please don’t judge me: I had my reasons for going to a Starbucks in downtown Chicago.

Reasons are as follows: 1. My train to Portland didn’t leave until 2 p.m. 2. My friend Angel had to be at work at 9(ish) and offered me a ride downtown.  3.  I didn’t want to pay for or hassle [...]

Painted Bunting!

Excuse me while I become my mother for a moment:

Painted Bunting!  It’s a painted bunting!  At the feeder!

My mom has been into birds for—I don’t know how long.  At least since I was in high school, because that was when my friends were over at our house pretty much all the time, or at least [...]

BAWC Week 15: Learning to Live in the World by William Stafford

(I know this is the wrong image, but I couldn’t find a link to the right one.  Apologies).

I probably would never have read this book if it weren’t for pizza.

Or maybe the word I’m looking for isn’t ‘pizza,’ it’s serendipity.  Whatever.

Let me explain.

When I was in Olympia during my [...]

Festival Much?

In the foreground are Azalea Belles. In the background are azaleas. Try not to get confused.

Is it a southern thing or just a generally-everywhere-thing?  Festivals, I mean.  Locally there is a blueberry festival, a spot festival, a watermelon festival, a muscadine wine festival, a shad festival, a whistling festival, and even a [...]