The Wonderful World of Podcasts

Really, folks, I don’t spent every waking minute reading blogs and immersing myself in the wonderful world of podcasts. I do have to remind myself, though, just as I used to remind myself about my book-reading habits, that sometimes taking in all this material from other people means that I’m not participating as fully as I might in my own life. That being said, I’ve greatly enjoyed getting into this whole new way to access a very old type of information, that of the spoken word. Instead of my just having the radio on to Colorado Public Radio and being forced to listen to whatever they’re droning on about, I get to choose my material to keep me company while I’m walking or cooking or cleaning.

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That First Step Down the Road of Choices

Stunningly attractive brown and cream tileWhat did we do in the kitchen? The floor was the first step, locking us in to certain future choices.

This is not a home decorating blog. Having such a blog is like having a food/recipe blog, for which the hapless blogger has to come up with new projects all the time. Hey, once I’m done, especially on the decorating front, I’m done. And while I’m a fan of new recipes, I’ll let others do the day-to-day work of developing them.

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The Happiness of a Big Event

bowl of foodI have a separate blog called Intentional Hospitality, but my purpose in writing this post isn’t so much to give you recipes and timetables as to talk about a major source of happiness–and nervous breakdowns—in my life: throwing parties.

I have always liked to cook, going way back to my grade-school days. In fact, one of my fondest memories from about fourth grade is the time that my mom put me in charge of cooking dinner and I made everything from the

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In Which I Am a Bad Sport about a Small Problem

figure unrolling carpetAin’t that just the way it always is? You finally solve a problem after weeks or even longer of delay, but one little thing is still wrong. So what do you focus on? That one little thing, of course.

Yesterday morning the second set of carpet installers arrived and immediately showed that they knew what they were doing. I mentioned to the guy before I left that they needed to check all the thresholds, which he assured me he would do. Arriving home after a great morning of Bible study and fellowship, I allowed myself not one second of enjoyment before going to the kitchen threshold and checking to make sure it had been done.

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Do You Give Burdensome Gifts?

copper cookwareI got into a conversation last night with my mother-in-law about cookware. The reason for this discussion was a mistake I’d made about not checking inside the oven before turning it on. She stores some of her pans in there, and I fried two handle covers. But I’d discovered that I could order replacement ones, so I’d told her about that, and then somehow we started talking about various metals that are used for pots and pans, and she mentioned that someone who’d stayed with them many years ago had given her a set of copper pans with a cooktop included. “Where is it?” I asked, intrigued. “Oh, somewhere in the garage. I’ve never used it–I don’t have room for it. I’d have to use it on top of the stove, and that wouldn’t make any sense–I’d be using it on top of the burners that are already there.”

When I went into the garage just now to look for it I realized that the quest was hopeless, mainly because all of our stuff is in there, plus a lot that had to be moved out of the downstairs to make room for us.

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Do You “Respect Your Possessions”?

Pile of garbageYet another blog post generated from a Gretchen Rubin idea. (I guess at some point I’ll have to start paying her a commission.) She had an interview this week with Marie Kondo, the incredibly successful organizer/declutterer who has now written a second book, Spark Joy. I just went online and downloaded the audiobook from the library, so expect to hear about my going on another ninja clearing-out raid in the days to come, the same thing that happened when I read Kondo’s first book, The Life-Changing Magic of Tidying Up

 

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The Tyranny of Possessions

PictureSalisbury House, EnglandI was reminded of this principle awhile ago when I was in an enormous house for a meeting.You walked into the front door and there you were in a foyer with one staircase curving down into a family room with a pool table and a fountain in the floor and the other curving up to the main level with another fountain, this time as a sheet of water flowing down a glass wall. I sat in the beautiful living room facing a fireplace with some kind of fancy poured-concrete mantel and huge shelves on either side of it going all the way up to the very high ceiling, with decorative objects and photographs. All I could think was, ‘How on earth do you get up to that top shelf to dust?” It wouldn’t be a matter of a stepstool; more of a stepladder. Maybe even a crane.

Before I go on, I do want to make it clear (not that anyone reading this has the faintest idea whom I’m talking about) that I’m not in any way criticizing the people who own the house. I have no idea how they use it or what their rationale was for buying it. I really enjoyed being there, and I came home fired up with the intention of keeping my own house a little more pristine.

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Three Partially-Read Books

stack of 3 books beside sunflowers

Sounds like a ringing endorsement, doesn’t it? But I do recommend the ideas in all three books, and if you take a look at one or all of them you may find that you want to finish it/them. I feel sometimes that certain books make their main point in the introduction and then the rest of the book is just amplification that goes on too long, and that’s my opinion of two of these selections. The third one is really excellent all the way through (or at least as far through as I got) and so meaty that I couldn’t listen to too much of it at once, Then my checkout expired. I do plan at some point to go back to it and finish.Here they are in alphabetical order. The Moore book is the “meaty” one. They’re all available as audiobooks at my library.