28 September 2009

Alphabet History: A is for Apple Picking

I came across this idea at The Public, the Private and Everything in Between and I'm going for it. The idea is to work through the alphabet in short, memoir-like pieces. Anyone who wants to join in, should!

This time of year always makes me think about apple picking, but one of my favorite apple-picking memories is the time we went when I was pregnant. It was October 2001 -- about a month after 9/11. Some friends invited us to go apple picking and then to go back to their house for lunch. The U.S. was about to go to war with Afghanistan and that was all over the news, but we collectively agreed to turn off the news and not discuss it. It is the first post 9/11 memory I have that does not include fear and I think it may have been the day I started to relax.

I can remember so much about that day -- the perfect Fall weather, the leaves just beginning to change, the smell of the mashed apples, the apple-cider doughnuts, and the chili lunch with a choice of vegetarian and non-vegetarian chili -- just to name a few things. It felt so good to be out in the sunshine and to choose the perfect apples from the trees. As corny as it may sound now I felt like I was doing something healthy for my pregnancy too. As if the act of picking apples was somehow nourishing to the baby.

Like so many random days that end up being permanent memories, it is a day that Rob also remembers well. He keeps a picture on his desk of the two of us standing among the apple trees. You can see that my pregnancy is just starting to show. We both look so young and happy. Every time we've been apple-picking since, we compare it to that day.

22 September 2009

Never Enough Hours in the Day

I know there's nothing new in me saying that sometimes it feels like there are never enough hours in the day, but I can't help saying it right now anyway. The days seem to just disappear lately. There are so many things I want to do, read, write, see and I never seem to get to them all. I start and get a quarter or halfway through some things and other things I never even get to look at. I bet you know the feeling. It is so frustrating, isn't it?

15 September 2009

Have you seen this? See Jane Work

For those of you out there who, like myself, love stationery and office supplies, you must check out See Jane Work. Oh, and I know you're out there.

See Jane work has amassed a lovely collection of everything you need from mouse pads, to note pads, to tote bags. Why use plain old manila file folders when you can use these?

Why write with just any pen when you can get an entire set of Le Pens? I do love Le Pens!

They even have a nice selection of Eco-Friendly products which is always good.

10 September 2009

Life According to Literature Meme

I've been tagged for this one by a few people in blogs and on Facebook. I am finally getting to it...

The rules: Using only books you have read this year (2009), cleverly answer these questions. Try not to repeat a book title. It’s a lot harder than you think!

Describe yourself: Another Mother's Life (Rowan Coleman)

How do you feel: A Blind Man Can See How Much I Love You (Amy Bloom)

Describe where you currently live: Netherland (Joseph O'Neill)

If you could go anywhere, where would you go? Away (Amy Bloom)

Your favorite form of transportation: Unaccustomed Earth (Jhumpa Lahiri)

Your best friend is: Coraline (Neil Gaiman)

You and your friends are: Smart Girls Like Me (Diane Vadino)

What’s the weather like: Labor Day (Joyce Maynard)

You fear: Gods Behaving Badly (Marie Phillips)

What is the best advice you have to give: There's No Place Like Here (Cecelia Ahern)

Thought for the day: Breath (Tim Winton)

How I would like to die: Slumberland (Paul Beatty)

My soul’s present condition: Dog Years (Mark Doty)

09 September 2009

Important "meme"

I was tagged by Emily to pass this along and I gladly will. I don't often get political on my blog, but since I don't think of this as a political issue I will jump in with my two cents:

Healthcare should be available to all.

I have been very fortunate to have health insurance most of my life, but I have no idea what I would do for me and my family if I didn't.

Please watch this video and then pass it along. If you are reading this, consider yourself tagged.

04 September 2009

... and she's off to 2nd grade!

and she's off to 2nd grade!, originally uploaded by Marcyjill.

Second grade is: Awesome!
New teacher is: Really cool!
First day was: Great!

Can't as for a better start than that, can you?

More photos from the first day here: http://www.flickr.com/photos/marcyjill/sets/72157622228522910/

03 September 2009

The Cosmetics Counter: Korres Mango Butter Lipstick

Last weekend I made a pilgrimage to my own personal Mecca, Sephora in search of something ... new. Since I have tried just about every cosmetic out there from eyebrow pencil to lip cream and everything in between, I decided to try a new brand. I selected Korres.

The Korres brand is from Athens, Greece and they are "committed to developing natural skincare, color, and body products that provide maximum results." Sounds like a good philosophy to me. Their products have a lot of appeal in packaging, fragrance, and color pallette. I am a lipstick fanatic so I opted for sampling the Mango Butter Lipstick. Doesn't that just sound delicious?

My color choice was natural purple which is a lovely brownish purple. It is a very sheer, lightweight formula that is also surprisingly long-lasting. The first time I wore it, I thought it wouldn't last more than an hour or so, but I was pleased when it actually lasted a few hours and didn't get dry and sticky in the corners of my mouth.

I will definitely be heading back to Sephora to try more Korres products sometime soon.

01 September 2009


It is definitely that time. It is hard for me to believe it, but Zoe starts second grade on Thursday. We've bought clothes and supplies and a new backpack, we've figured out the first day outfit (of course there will be pictures!), we've examined the class list, and Zoe has even put in her request for a breakfast of French Toast on the first day. I'd say she's as ready as she's going to be.

It is a funny time of year filled with excitement and anticipation for the coming year and at the same time it is hard to let summer vacation go. As much as I may have complained about the lack of structure and schedule, there are parts of it that are really nice and can make an ordinary Tuesday, like today, feel like vacation even if it is just for an hour or so.

When I think back to what a difference a year of first grade made, I can't wait to see what this year brings for Zoe. I think I feel the same way about Zoe growing up as I do about the end of summer. I am both excited and pleased to see her blossoming into her own, independent person and at the same time I look back on the not-so-distant past with nostalgia for the little girl who needed me to wash her in the bath tub and the baby who slept right in my arms as if they were made for that purpose.