A couple of months ago, I engaged in conversation with a new food bank client. He told me about his life and his education. He shared his love of grammar and communication. He told me that he was so proud of his granddaughter, who at the age of 3, correctly used the word “ubiquitous” in a sentence.
Hard to believe, right? He may have been lying about this. Though who in their right mind would lie about this type of thing?
Either way, it matters not. This conversation, however, did get me thinking, as a former English major, about this basic fact: I love words. Especially unique ones. Ones that are fun to say. Words that have a super special ability to convey precisely the right sentiment at the right moment.
And of course, I was prompted to look up the actual definition of the word “ubiquitous”. You know, just to double check my understanding of it’s meaning. It’s been a few years since I was an English major.
According to good old Merriam-Webster:
Definition of ubiquitous
: existing or being everywhere at the same time : constantly encountered:
Allow me to use this beautiful word in a sentence:
One could say that the smell of weed on Pearl Street in Boulder, Colorado was ubiquitous.
Here’s a few more lovely words to nerd out on:
Definition of compunction
1a: anxiety arising from awareness of guilt compunctions of conscience
b: distress of mind over an anticipated action or result… showed no compunction in planning devilish engines of … destruction.— Havelock Ellis
2: a twinge of misgiving : SCRUPLE cheated without compunction… he had no compunction about brushing aside legal technicalities.— Robert Penn Warren
Used in a sentence:
Attorney General William Barr summarized the Mueller report without compunction.
Definition of kerfuffle
: a disturbance or commotion typically caused by a dispute or conflict In all the kerfuffle, nobody seemed to have noticed Harry, which suited him perfectly.— J. K. RowlingIt’s not the only school with dress code issues; almost every week there’s a local story about some kerfuffle over what kids wear to school.— Belinda Luscombe
In a sentence: Despite all the kerfuffle made by the Chicago police and the media at large, the case against Jussie Smollett has been thrown out.
Definition of vociferous
: marked by or given to vehement insistent outcry
What a great word, that vociferous.
In sentence form:
I vociferously disagree with climate change deniers.
Here’s the truth, folks: I am approximately 10 lbs. 15 lbs. heavier than I should be, according to the last height/weight/BMI chart I glanced at. If I don’t start losing at least some weight, I will find myself having no choice but to purchase size 14 pants. I really don’t want to do that. I’m accepting of my status as a size 12. It’s okay with me that I’ve got some curves. I don’t feel a need to get down to a size 8 or even a size 10 at all.
I think the two things that need to happen to lose any weight is 1) start an aerobic exercise routine and 2) decrease the portions on my plate. It’s simple really.
Every Monday morning at the food bank I run, a kindly older gentleman delivers a large box of desserts, donated by local grocery store bakeries. As experience has taught me, there is zero chance that each and every one of these goodies will be snapped up by our senior clients by Friday. Turns out, by and large, seniors are actually pretty darn health-conscious. And I very much dislike tossing out perfectly delicious items such as these below.
To top it off, we often pick up even more sugary delights from the Food Bank of the Rockies. I’m talking pies, cakes, donuts, cupcakes…you get the gist.
My mind-set fluctuates between “YOLO” and “Don’t put that shit in your body, dummy!” when it comes to my appetite for all things sweet.
Perhaps I just need to greatly increase my exercise to combat this, which would provide the extra bonus of lessening the guilt surrounding my consumption of treats. But then, I would risk injuring myself by over-doing it. Like I could twist my ankle and end up having to keep it elevated on the couch for weeks on end. Then I’d have no choice but to put a stop to my over-indulgence of sugar unless I decided I actually wanted to gain weight. That would be crazy.
This is quite the conundrum for me. I suspect it will continue to be.
Resistance, in this case, may indeed be futile.
Thank the good Lord that both tunic tops and leggings are all the rage in women’s fashion these days. As a slave to fashion who carries some extra weight, this is much appreciated.
Anyhoo…let me finish this post off with a recipe. It’s simple (aka not exactly from scratch) and sweet and you absolutely should not make them if you don’t intend to scarf them all down in less than 24 hours. They are addictive.
1 package fudge brownie mix (13 X 9 inch pan size)
1 cup sour cream
1 cup milk chocolate chips
1/2 cup chopped walnuts (optional, of course)
1 cup milk chocolate frosting
Prepare brownie mix according to package directions. Fold the sour cream chocolate chips, and walnuts into batter. Pour into the greased baking pan. Bake at 350 for 30-35 minutes. Once completely cooled (I know, this takes much patience), frost. Cut into squares (or ovals, or hexagons, or triangles) and enjoy!
Clearly, I flat out suck at coming up with titles for my blog posts. Any suggestions you may have to address this particular shortcoming of mine are appreciated.
Though the title I chose is better than the original : “To all the Blogs I’ve loved before”. That might have sounded just a tad creepy, right?
My objective in this particular post is to lift up those blogs and bloggers that I have been following ever since I started my own blog (and a couple of these I discovered prior to starting this blog).
I’ve been very fortunate to have discovered each of these blogs and I think if you haven’t yet discovered them yourself, you’d be doing yourself a favor by checking them out now.
You see, these are the blogs that I feel I actually get something out of. Whether that be inspiration for my next blog post, a kick ass recipe, a new way of thinking about something, or a few hearty belly laughs, these are my “go-to’s”.
I find Elly and her blog to be creative, talented, inspirational, hilarious, smart, and entertaining. And she plays a mean ukulele! If I had an opportunity to write with her, I’d take it in a hot second. Elly also wrote a hilarious book, complete with awesome illustrations, thanks to her cohort Joan Reilly, about a middle aged, liberal, educated, cat owning but not child owning (not like one owns their children of course), married couple traipsing across the country in an RV in an effort to make sense of what has become of our country in the wake of the Trump era.
She started her book as a regular feature in McSweeney’s. It’s titled “Amongst the Liberal Elite” and of course you can buy it on Amazon, like I did, or find it in your local bookstore.
CJ @ https://feedingonfolly.com/: She is a fantastic storyteller. A giver of wonderful recipes. She is smart, funny, and kind. She’s inspired and encouraged me throughout my blogging journey.
Lorna @ https://ginlemonade.com/ Lorna is a very talented writer. Her tone is straightforward and her writing, through the lens of a mom/wife/American living in Scotland who gets around on wheels due to CP, is insightful. She is very hardworking and sincere in her writing. She also runs a great blogging group on Facebook which has been a pleasure for me to be a part of.
Then there’s Christine @ https://imsickandsoareyou.com/. She is the blogger who recommended Lorna’s blogging group on Facebook. She blogs from the viewpoint of a woman who was very sick for a good long time, due to a desmoid tumor, who has fairly recently regained her health. She is terribly witty, thoughtful, raw, and honest with her writing. She is imaginative and alternates between being laugh-out-loud funny with her writing and deeply personal and thoughtful.
Annie at https://givememeatloaf.com/ is a blogger I’ve been following I believe since before I started my own blog. She writes primarily about food and travel. She is a “living doll” as my mom used to say. She’s cute as a button and has a way of drawing you in with her beautiful pictures of delectable food (some she makes herself and some from dining out) and travel destinations. There is a sense of fun and adventure in all of her posts. And I owe her a thank you in advance for a recent post on her trip to Puerto Rico with her husband (aka Sir Dave). It helped me to talk Hubs into taking me to Puerto Rico for our next tropical vacation (ha ha! as if this is really a thing for us). But alas, we shall go there! Our 30th wedding anniversary is coming up in 2020, after all.
Now, there are of course several other blogs I regularly follow that I ought to mention. Because I respect your time, I will keep it simple-ish and drop links to a few of those.
https://butismileanyway.com/: Ritu writes, among other things, a regular feature “Chai and a Chat” in which she expresses her sweet, positive, effervescent personality. It’s a delight. Reading this always makes me wish I was sitting across from her, gabbing the day away in person.
Fatty McCupcakes (you’ll have to google it as I’m not much of a techie and couldn’t get the link to copy here) : Just trust me when I say that Katie is a great comedic writer. She tells the funniest stories and is very relatable.
Hubs and I just got back from spending the better part of a week in the house I grew up in.
Because my mom died.
The last good picture of me and Mom (July 2018)
I’m going to be processing this fact for a good long while.
But for now, let me tell you a little about this special house.
It’s a small house that was filled with a lot of love. It’s very old but well maintained, because of my dad’s abilities with carpentry, plumbing, and virtually everything else.
As the story goes, my grandfather (whom I never met), at the age of 58, had a massive heart attack and died while standing in the archway between the tiny kitchen and the dining area of this house.
Both of my parents had experiences with his presence in that house over the years. It never scared them at all. I think they found it comforting.
This is also the house my father grew up in. He bought it from my grandmother. Between about 1960 and 1985, he and mom raised me, and my older sister and brother in this house.
The kitchen is quite small. I’m always amazed that despite not having more than 5 feet of counter space to work with, my mom always churned out delicious, homemade meals for us each and every night. The woman had a knack for using small spaces as efficiently as possible. It’s too bad she never got an opportunity to visit Ikea, with their mock up small spaces that have cleverly placed nooks and crannies for housing all the necessities for day to day living.
This is the house in which my two teenaged siblings threw a wild party at, in about 1974, while our parents were on a Las Vegas vacation. The party where 7 year old me was slathered with attention and plied with sandwiches and other treats in an attempt to ensure my silence. I, of course, being the bratty little sister, immediately told on them once our parents got home.
This is the house where my dad, fully immersed in his Alzheimer’s fog 2 years ago, gestured towards the corner of the living room, and relived, for me and mom, the delight he experienced in that very space where 75 years prior, his father sat with him and read stories.
This is the house where, back in the 80’s, my best friend burned a hole with her cigarette on the handmade-by-mom quilt that covered my 4 poster bead while my parents were out of town for the weekend. I lived in fear from that day on that mom would notice that little burn hole. But, surprisingly, she never did.
Yes, the quilt (as our bright 5 year old grandson said: that sounds like it starts with the letter “Q”!) came back home to Colorado with us.
This is the house where people gathered to celebrate. From mom’s bridge club nights to family/friends steak fries during the summer in the backyard to high school graduation parties to wedding present openings.