Obviously, we are spending a lot of time in our house these days, and I can’t continue to ignore the parts of my house that need to be fixed. Our economy is plunging down into a black hole, so it seems like a bad time to borrow money. All of that adds up to: I’m reluctantly becoming a DIYer. First up is the bathroom. I … Continue reading Notes & Stories: Elbow
Here’s my goal for this newsletter: Mention coronavirus as little as possible. I’m sure you’re all reading the news, maybe (but probably not) as often as I am, and we all know what’s going on. I’ll try to keep this issue light, distracting, and personal—so I can trick my brain into moving away from its usual heavy, obsessive (I check a lot of maps), and … Continue reading Notes & Stories: Short Attention Span
It was Harper’s birthday last Friday, and by request, we went on a destination-free road trip. Harper’s favorite part of any road trip is the long drive with music; it’s really all about the journey. We drove over the Golden Gate Bridge, then south along the coast. We went as far as Pescadero, where I got out to get a fish taco for Poppy (gas … Continue reading Notes & Stories: Pandemic Edition
I finally tried reading on a Kindle this week. I have resisted getting one, because I really, really, really like books. And I really, really, really like libraries. Like, a lot. (Take a look at one of my bookshelves, and you’ll see that I love books in an intense way.) But in December, I finished reading a book and wanted to read the second in … Continue reading Notes & Stories: Kindle Edition
I woke up to rain this morning. I love a rainy day when I don’t have anything urgent to do; the rain takes away all of those annoying feelings of “I should be doing something.” It’s the perfect excuse to stay indoors and do nothing. Rain was a contributing factor to why I failed my first class ever, during sophomore year at UCSC. It was … Continue reading Notes & Stories: Rainy Days
Have you heard? It’s not just a new year, but a new decade. Yes, of course you’ve heard. I’m sure you, like me, have not been able to escape all the best-of lists and ten-year challenges and decade recaps. Maybe you, unlike me, even enjoy reading or creating those kinds of lists. Personally, I’m over it. I just turned fifty, “just” as in yesterday. I’ve … Continue reading Notes & Stories: Enough with the Recaps!
We had our Thanksgiving dinner a day early this year; I spent Thursday doing pretty much nothing. And today I find myself feeling like doing more of the same. Some reading, some snacking, maybe a movie. Two days in a row! Of not working! It’s just what I needed. Life has been too busy this year. All that work has to be balanced with some … Continue reading Notes & Stories: Reading for Rest Days
There’s an ad on the back of the United grocery bags right now, with the face of a frowning, confused, wrinkled woman wondering “How did I get to be this old?” Well, I don’t know, lady, but I’ve been wondering the same thing. There were a couple of significant anniversaries this week—it was thirty years ago that the Berlin Wall came down, fifty years ago … Continue reading Notes & Stories: How Did I Get to Be This Old?
I’ve been thinking about happiness this week, about how it’s not something I have to achieve or something to strive for, but something I can (and should) find right now. Happiness doesn’t need to be a constant state of being, but can be found in little “pockets of joy,” as Jonathan Van Ness says. Too often, I catch myself thinking “life will be better when … Continue reading Notes & Stories: Pockets of Joy
My favorite thing about blackouts is the total silence. (Why doesn’t anyone say “blackout” anymore? It’s so much more evocative than “power outage.”) There’s no refrigerator hum, no clicking whir from the wifi router, no stove fan, no buzz from dimmable bulbs. Also no meows coming from Minecraft kittens or dance music from a Bluetooth speaker. It’s so peaceful—and so rare. There’s nothing like a … Continue reading Notes & Stories: Blackout