Tag Archives: ivan and alyosha

Good Things #2

This past week was unusually beautiful: I drove with the top down, drank iced coffee instead of hot coffee, enjoyed a good Mexican dinner with my brothers and cousin, and felt a hankering for country music (this hits me in the summer – very strange phenomenon). Sunday ended with an hour-long talk on the phone and a reminder that we are all changing, just some are faster than others.

Here are some Good Things that are brightening my Monday:

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Teaching. I spent Sunday afternoon compiling material for a chicken class. It all happened last fall when I was teaching an adult ESL class – somehow it got out that I have chickens and the director of the program asked if I would be interested in teaching an “Introduction to Raising Chickens” class in the spring. Well, spring is here and the class is this Saturday and I find myself making lists of the hardiest breeds, best layers, local farm stores, and all the weird things you learn when you raise chickens [Wait, you’re telling me you have to check hens for mites?! Yes, that’s what I’m telling you.]. I can’t wait to show the girls off. I hope my Barred Rock gets her act together and grows some feathers back in time!

Music. Okay, so I know I posted a song from Ivan and Alyosha last week, but I’m still listening to them. This is one of my favorites, probably because it’s so upbeat. Oh, to be easy to love! [This is a live recording because they’re cool.]

I’m also really liking this guy lately. This was sent to me by my contemporary music guru [a.k.a., my city-friend]. I don’t know much about him except that his name is Joe Purdy and that he looks pretty much how you’d imagine him to look [judging from his music]. A little more melancholy than “East to Love,” but sometimes that’s what you’re in the mood for. [This one is not live because the camera on the live version was so shaky I felt nauseous.]

Iced Coffee. I think I’ll always drink hot coffee in the morning, but iced coffee really hits the spot in the afternoon. I’m wondering if these afternoon beverages aren’t what’s affecting my sleep patterns…?

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Movies. I finally saw Silver Linings Playbook after months of hearing about it, and I loved it. Which is weird, because usually when people praise things to me, whatever those things are, they’re never as wonderful as I’d imagined. But I loved the way this was filmed, the way the dialogue was lapped over itself, and the character development, especially. Good stuff. Should be nominated for an award or something.

Books. So this isn’t a particular book, but this past Saturday I went to my library’s annual book sale. Oh my gosh, I forgot how great these are! Only $1 for a paperback, $2 for a hardcover?! I’ll take twenty. We walked down and got old fashioned doughnuts and coffee at the little cafe [there’s actually a funny story that goes along with this, but that’s another post] and then headed over to canvass the tables for interesting finds. I found an old copy of Dostoyevsky’s Idiot [I’ve been meaning to read it for awhile – gotta add to my Russian literature, you know?], Bridget Jones’s Diary, a Margaret Atwood book, and Barbara Kingsolver’s The Prodigal Summer [a guy at my small group keeps recommending her, so I figure I should give it a shot]. My friend and I bought a good stack with plans to switch in a few weeks. I was thinking of having a book-swap, because I have all these books that I’ve loved and want others to love, too. Maybe this summer!

What good things are filling your Monday?

Introducing: Good Things

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I’ve written about this before, and it’s no surprise to most of America: Mondays can be tough. I’m blessed this year to have a slow start to my Mondays – the mornings consist of grading, lesson planning, poetry reading, and apparently, blogging.

It won’t always be this way. I’m sure soon I’ll have to begin bright and early at some beloved or not-so-beloved workplace. But for now, I thought I’d start a little tradition:

Mondays Are For Good Things

I know, that’s not really a thing. But let’s make it a thing: I thought I’d share some of my favorites on Monday mornings. You should share some of your favorites, too. Leave a comment with the latest thing that’s pushing your buttons (in a good way).

So here are four to start with.

Music. I went to a concert last weekend, and I am currently listening to these guys non-stop. How could a self-respecting English major not be intrigued by a band name like Ivan and Alyosha? I love their folky-alternative sound. Their lyrics give some food for thought, too.

Gardening. Dad and I went to the nursery and bought plants yesterday afternoon in the April sun. We got parsley, creeping rosemary (for my rock wall), vinca (I love this beautiful little purple flower!), alyssum, and pink and red bee balm. I planted them all in an hour, but it took almost as long just for me to decide where to put them. I’m not anal about many things, but words and gardening seem to be two of those things. The dirt felt chilly on my bare hands and the sun felt hot on my head, so it was a good combination.

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Gyming-it-up. After writing about my hate-affair with running, I can honestly say that I am looking forward to going back to the gym today. Who knows what’s next? Maybe I’ll become an internationally acclaimed salsa dancer! The world is my oyster.

Poetry. One of my all-time favorite poems just happens to be about spring. Leave it to e. e. cummings to pull your heartstrings and wow your intellect in the same blow.

i thank You God for most this amazing

i thank You God for most this amazing
day:for the leaping greenly spirits of trees
and a blue true dream of sky; and for everything
which is natural which is infinite which is yes

(i who have died am alive again today,
and this is the sun’s birthday; this is the birth
day of life and of love and wings: and of the gay
great happening illimitably earth)

how should tasting touching hearing seeing
breathing any–lifted from the no
of all nothing–human merely being
doubt unimaginable You?

(now the ears of my ears awake and
now the eyes of my eyes are opened)

What are you enjoying this week?