NaBloPoMo 2014: Married to Amazement

November 01, 2014 By: Jenna Category: Personal

When it’s over, I want to say: all my life
I was a bride married to amazement.
I was the bridegroom, taking the world into my arms.

When it is over, I don’t want to wonder
if I have made of my life something particular, and real.
I don’t want to find myself sighing and frightened,
or full of argument.

I don’t want to end up simply having visited this world.

Excerpt from When Death comes, by Mary Oliver

bride married to amazement

As an exercise in learning to recognize and revel in the Amazement in my own life, I’m combining the NaBloPoMo challenge with the daily gratitude challenge I frequently see in my Facebook feed in November. Every day this month I’m going to write something on a particular topic, with the loose guidelines of “Lessons Learned” for the first week, “Opportunities” in the second week, “Friends” in the third, and “Family” throughout the week of Thanksgiving. I’ll finish up with a few posts that will tie it all together. The goal is 1-2 paragraphs per post, short entries that are neither schmaltzy nor trite. And no pictures! I think leaving the pictures out of it will help me keep up with this on a daily basis.

The goal is to not only push my writing skills, but push me to think about my own life and opportunities and relationships in a more positive way. I always want to be authentic, but I think there’s room in that space of authenticity for a strong dose of positivity as well.

Do You Skimm?

January 15, 2014 By: Jenna Category: Uncategorized

Today is National Skimm Day (as declared by the ladies behind theSkimm) and I think their service is so fab that I’m writing a post so you guys will Skimm* with me. Give them your email address and each morning you will wake up with a daily news summary in your inbox. It’s a medley of politics, world news, business, celebrity tidbits, and sports. The language and descriptions are witty and sassy and it’s the best way I’ve found to keep up with what’s going on. I used to get all of my news from The Daily Show and Colbert Report, but the Skimm ladies have won my heart. Every Saturday I turn over in bed, grab my phone, and feel a little sad that I’ll have to wait until Monday to Skimm again.

This is not hyperbole. I really love the email that much.

Sign up here. That’s the link they gave me, although they didn’t offer me anything to share it with you. (Editor’s note: Oh wait, my email this morning said they are giving away prizes for people who refer lots of friends! Hopefully that will be me.) I want you to sign up because I think the women behind theSkimm are making the world a better place** and I hope they become rich and successful while doing it. I’m inspired by them.

 

skimm daily email subscription news summary

 

*Using that as a verb is quite fun. I’d like to verbify something I create.

**Smaltzy, I know. But they’re educating people, specifically women, on world events in an engaging way unlike anything I’ve ever seen before. And  they’re doing it in a non-partisan way, which I admire. 

Texas Bee Pool Party

September 01, 2010 By: Jenna Category: Uncategorized

Right before I left I hosted a Texas Bee pool party at my apartment complex! I was so happy to have so many people agree to come. I don’t have time to comment on every photo, so those who attended can feel free to leave their thoughts below :)

Baby BoP and Baby Avo. T1 has such a HUGE head compared to her! They are only 5 days apart. I remember when BoP went into labor and I was so mad because she was due after me and I was so ready to have the baby out of my belly!

Hydrangea, BoP, Mouse, Avocado. TH came after we took this picture, and Fro-Yo was there as well but she wasn’t in our group shot because she was mistakenly at the wrong pool for a little while!

Baby Hydrangea is on the way.

Those swim trunks are for a 12 month old. He looks ridiculous in them.

I brought my waterproof camera down for some shots in the pool. Fro-Yo’s nieces had so much fun playing with it.

I am most definitely NOT good at being in underwater photos.

Fro-Yo is really good at it though!

Isn’t she darling?

Can you find Mr. Mouse in Mrs. Mouse’s glasses?

If any of the bees present would like a copy of the photos they are in send me an email! I’m exciting for our Chicago Bee get together this Saturday :)

Jagged vs. Lagged or English is Strange

October 20, 2009 By: Jenna Category: Uncategorized

Yesterday husband and I were reading scriptures together (actually we were reading the student manual which was explaining some of the concepts found in the scriptures) and I found myself getting caught up on the word “lagged”. I realized that if you replaced the L with a J the word went from one syllable to two syllables — lagged vs. jagged. Why is this? I couldn’t focus on anything else so we took a break from our reading while husband dug up the following email forward from his inbox. I loved it so much I decided I had to share it with you, even though most of you have probably already seen it. How does anyone learn this as a second language? CRAZY!

1) The bandage was wound around the wound.
2) The farm was used to produce produce.
3) The dump was so full that it had to refuse more refuse .
4) We must polish the Polish furniture.
5) He could lead if he would get the lead out.
6) The soldier decided to desert his dessert in the desert.
7) Since there is no time like the present , he thought it was time to present the present
8) A bass was painted on the head of the bass drum.
9) When shot at, the dove dove into the bushes.
10) I did not object to the object.
11) The insurance was invalid for the invalid.
12) There was a row among the oarsmen about how to row
13) They were too close to the door to close it.
14) The buck does funny things when the does are present.
15) A seamstress and a sewer fell down into a sewer line.
16) To help with planting, the farmer taught his sow to sow.
17) The wind was too strong to wind the sail.
18) Upon seeing the tear in the painting I shed a tear.
19) I had to subject the subject to a series of tests.
20) How can I intimate this to my most intimate friend?

Let’s face it – English is a crazy language. There is no egg in eggplant, nor ham in hamburger; neither apple nor pine in pineapple. English muffins weren’t invented in England or French fries in France. Sweetmeats are candies while sweetbreads, which aren’t sweet, are meat. We take English for granted. But if we explore its paradoxes, we find that quicksand can work slowly, boxing rings are square and a guinea pig is neither from Guinea nor is it a pig.
And why is it that writers write but fingers don’t fing, grocers don’t groce and hammers don’t ham? If the plural of tooth is teeth, why isn’t the plural of booth, beeth? One goose, 2 geese. So one moose, 2 meese? One index, 2 indices? Doesn’t it seem crazy that you can make amends but not one amend? If you have a bunch of odds and ends and get rid of all but one of them, what do you call it?
If teachers taught, why didn’t preachers praught? If a vegetarian eats vegetables, what does a humanitarian eat? Sometimes I think all the English speakers should be committed to an asylum for the verbally insane. In what language do people recite at a play and play at a recital? Ship by truck and send cargo by ship? Have noses that run and feet that smell?
How can a slim chance and a fat chance be the same, while a wise man and a wise guy are opposites? You have to marvel at the unique lunacy of a language in which your house can burn up as it burns down, in which you fill in a form by filling it out and in which, an alarm goes off by going on.
English was invented by people, not computers, and it reflects the creativity of the human race, which, of course, is not a race at all That is why, when the stars are out, they are visible, but when the lights are out, they are invisible.
PS. – Why doesn’t “Buick” rhyme with “quick”

You lovers of the English language might enjoy this
There is a two-letter word that perhaps has more meanings than any other two-letter word, and that is “UP.”
It’s easy to understand UP , meaning toward the sky or at the top of the list, but when we awaken in the morning, why do we wake UP ? At a meeting, why does a topic come UP? Why do we speak UP and why are the officers UP for election and why is it UP to the secretary to write UP a report ?
We call UP our friends. And we use it to brighten UP a room, polish UP the silver, we warm UP the leftovers and clean UP the kitchen. We lock UP the house and some guys fix UP the old car . At other times the little word has real special meaning. People stir UP trouble, line UP for tickets, work UP an appetite, and think UP excuses. To be dressed is one thing, but to be dressed UP is special .
And this UP is confusing: A drain must be opened UP because it is stopped UP. We open UP a store in the morning but we close it UP at night.
We seem to be pretty mixed UP about UP ! To be knowledgeable about the proper uses of UP , look the word UP in the dictionary. In a desk-sized dictionary, it takes UP almost 1/4th of the page and can add UP to about thirty definitions. I f you are UP to it, you might try building UP a list of the many ways UP is used. It will take UP a lot of your time, but if you don’t give UP , you may wind UP with a hundred or more. When it threatens to rain, we say it is clouding UP. When the sun comes out we say it is clearing UP
When it rains, it wets the earth and often messes things UP .
When it doesn’t rain for awhile, things dry UP .
One could go on and on, but I’ll wrap it UP , for now my time is UP , so……….. it is time to shut UP…..!

Belated V-Day Love

February 21, 2009 By: Jenna Category: Holiday, Married Life

I love belated Valentines Day so much more than on-time Valentines Day.

valentines 2009

These flowers? They were free (due to a cashier error). Even if they weren’t free, they would have only cost $10. Did you hear that? $10 teeny, tiny little dollars. I bought ice cream cones that cost almost that much while I was in Vegas.

valentines 2009

Now I have 12 pretty flowers to look at, and one big vase to keep.

valentines 2009

And there was a second surprise after the flowers! I have been wanting to buy The Scarlet Pimpernel for years, but I’ve been unable to find the exact copy our creepy history teacher in high school used to show us when he didn’t feel like teaching anything. I got so excited when I saw this at Costco a few weeks ago, but the price tag was enough that I knew buying it would bust our entertainment budget for several months. That Husband saw how excited I got and bought it for me as a V-Day surprise.

valentines 2009

Now I have:

Pride & Prejudice

Victoria & Albert

Emma

Jane Eyre

Lorna Doone

Tom Jones

Ivanhoe

and my personal favorite The Scarlet Pimpernel.

We’re going to be Pimping out tonight with some homemade ice cream. (Did you like how I did that thing with the Pimpernel and the Pimping? I thought it was cool of me. I’m usually against using the term “pimping” because of the awful connotations, but I thought I was being quite clever here.)

      I'm a farm-raised almost-crunchy stroller-pushing picture-taking lifestyle-blog-writing gastronomy-obsessed divine-seeking thrift-store-combing cheese-inhaling pavement-pounding laughter-sprinkling lover of individuality and taking chances.
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