Happiness Is This

Hi sunshines!

I’m sorry for the prolonged absence. It’s been a busy time for me – though that’s certainly not an excuse; everyone seems to busiest at this time of year. So what’s been going on? A few things – midterms at school. Then there was Fall Break, where I spent five of the loveliest days I can remember at home. On returning to Ann Arbor, I had a few more hurdles: a midterm in Shakespeare and a paper for British History. I’m mostly in the clear now. Things should be more scattered, though still consistent, until Thanksgiving.

Another thing: I haven’t been taking a lot of photographs lately. Not really since Fall Break, actually. I’ve found it makes me a little too obsessed with what I eat sometimes. So I’ll be experimenting with posts and subjects in the coming weeks. Any suggestions for post topics would be lovely!

Here are a few of my favorite things:

Surrounded by words.

From left to right: Freedom by Jonathan Franzen. Read it. Now. It is an incredible, funny, and sad novel. Three issues of the New Yorker and one of the New York Review of Books (Thanks UJ!) and a copy each of BHG (I always flip to the recipes and health sections) and Vanity Fair. Marilyn Monroe on the cover again? Ugh. I haven’t even really read this issue because I feel like Monroe’s on the cover at least once yearly.

Yeats and Gourds.

An early Christmas present! Mom took me to Barnes and Noble within hours of returning home. I had a gift card and wanted to buy a copy of Jillian Michael’s 30 Day Shred (it comes highly recommended by two of my favorite women, Kerry and Cait). I was hesitant to spend a gift card on a DVD rather than a book, but it was worth it. The DVD is a killer work out. And I did manage to get a book out of the deal, though I won’t get to enjoy it till December. What a treat that will be!

I made Jimmy do some modeling for me while I was home. The kid’s a natural!

Heavy lies the club.

Hey cutie.

Now Jimmy’s not my only cute brother. Joe’s quite photogenic, too.

Bon Jo-vial.

Popcorn to the brim!

On Monday night, Joe made some really excellent popcorn. We watched Indiana Jones, a childhood throwback. As you can see in the pic, the pan was completely filled with popcorn. What a treat! Unfortunately, I was a little heavy-handed on the garlic salt. That’s not to say I didn’t finish my bowl!

Now let’s not forget about the eats. My mom is a serious cook; as a result, the eats were one of the highlights of Fall Break. Here they are, in no particular order:

Buddy's!

One of the best parts of going home is our Friday night pizza tradition. We usually alternate between Buddy’s, Amici’s, Hungry Howie’s, and Jets (not a fan of that last one). My mom and I split a small mushroom, while the boys devoured a large pepperoni and cheese.

Pizza, Salad, Strawberries.

On another night over Fall Break, my mom and I made Potatoes Anna, grilled vegetables, and steak. I was involved in the prep for the veggies and potatoes.

Before.

After.

Potatoes Anna are a real treat. I think my Aunt Julie made them first and they were so good that my mom found a recipe. The potatoes are thinly sliced, so it’s almost like eating a potato chip, except thicker and hot.

Grilled Veggies!

I looove grilled vegetables! I ate them all the time over the summer; I don’t have a grill at school, so I look forward to them when I come home for a weekend. They’re good on their own, or in salads or wraps.

Potatoes Anna, Steak, Veggies, Strawberries

This was a wonderful meal. The following morning, I had oatmeal, made by my mother. I’m gonna go ahead and say that oatmeal is always better if your mom makes it for you.

Pear + Walnut Oatmeal

On Tuesday, I made Pumpkin Bread. I wanted to surprise my mom with it when she came home from work. She was pleased!

Pumpkin Bread!

This is really pretty easy to make. I’m sure it would be divine with cream cheese frosting (but wouldn’t anything?!). I’ll include the recipe in a later post.

The only thing I missed during Fall Break was my dad. He was in NYC with his siblings for the weekend. Luckily, I got to see him on Monday night.

Dad's back!

And here’s one with the woman who made the weekend worthwhile:

Hey Ma!

One last thing: the title of this post refers to a line from Mrs. Dalloway. I finished the book shortly before break; now I’m reading another Woolf novel, To The Lighthouse. Both are marvelous. I’m also starting Regeneration for the British History course tonight. I’ve heard it’s really good, so I’m quite excited. Lastly, I’m sort of reading The Phantom Tollbooth. I say sort of because I’ve been reading it so sporadically that I can’t really remember what’s happening. Hopefully I’ll pick it up again sometime soon, and seriously this time.

Well, I’ve got to go. Regeneration calls!

Goodnight,

Mary

 

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3 Responses to Happiness Is This

  1. Erin says:

    finally. i was worried.

  2. Brian Demery says:

    What a great post! Loved every bit of it!

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