Wednesday, January 31, 2007

An Ode to the Reading Nook

When it is cold and gray outside there is not greater pleasure in the world then to climb into the reading nook and take a long afternoon nap. The soft green walls match the thick fleece blanket. The pillows are deep and comfortable. A large window lines one edge, where the reader (or more likely the napper) can keep an eye on the weather, the changing seasons, or the sunset.

I just love my little reading nook.

When E and I moved into our place, we new instantly that we wanted the large window seat in the upstairs bedroom to become the reading nook. We covered the carpeted seat with blankets; we piled pillows into it, and hung a pretty little picture that spoke of such special places. We tried to read, we really did, but the reading nook took hold. Now, jokingly E and I call the reading nook the napping nook, because no actual reading ever gets done there.

Whenever I feel like the world has taken hold, or when I feel sad, or happy, or in love, or tired, I climb into the reading nook and life seems better. Last weekend was slow, which was wonderful because E and I are usually so busy. Both Saturday and Sunday I climbed into the reading nook and took a beautiful, long nap. Life couldn’t be better.

The reading nook yesterday, on a sunny winter afternoon.

Tuesday, January 23, 2007

American America

I saw V of Vendetta a couple weeks ago, and it scared me. It is crazy how much this country is turning into the fictional fascism that movie portrayed right before my eyes. I was horrified to find out the President of this country did illegal wire taps without a warrant, and the government did nothing to stop it. I was even more horrified to see him lie to the American public yet again about “weapons of mass destruction” and that Iraq is not a total and utter failure. But what I was overwhelmed me the most was that the Bush Administration wanted Grand Canyon National Park to teach visitors that it was created by Noah’s Arch flood, not geological forces that took thousands upon thousands of years. You’ve got to be kidding me!! What are we going to say next, dinosaurs didn’t exist? Holy crap, American is going to hell in a hand basket! Thank God the Democrats took over the congress.

So, on another note (but still related), I went down to Sanpete county last weekend! The air was cold and clear, and the cheep hotel was surprising nice (but I did sleep with earplugs, however). We traveled all the roads, enjoyed the sunshine and small town cooking, and kept our eye out for bald eagles, which migrate here each winter. And to our surprise, we found some beautiful eagles, and so I wanted to share my favorite photo I took of our national bird:

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

Damn it is cold!

It’s been a cold few weeks in Salt Lake City, or should I say freezing? Today’s high is only expected to be in the teens, and the low was below zero. Last weekend the air was bitter cold, and the roads were icy. E and I wanted to get out of the house, so what did we decide? Snowshoeing!

Yes, we’re crazy, but we had a really fun time. It was quite cold, and my nose was a frozen numb thing by the time we were done, but we did get a workout and actually breathe some fresh air.

Of course I brought my camera along, and snapped some quick photos, here are the best:

E and I on Saturday snowshoeing

Also, I went to Ohio last week for business. The trip was long and tiring, but I’m really looking forward to the work we’ll do with this client, and overall I had a great time. I’d never been to Ohio, and I love to see new places.

Now I better get back to work, and try to warm my frozen hands.

Monday, January 08, 2007

We painted our office

E and I painted our office. Over the long holiday weekend, with everything else going on, we decided to take on the huge task of cleaning out all the crap in our office, painting it, and putting the entire thing back together. As you can guess, we are quite tired, but the finished product looks great.





Friday, January 05, 2007


The memorial for my Grandpa was yesterday, and it was perfect. The memorial captured what he was all about perfectly. I was honored to be a speaker, here is what I had to say:

Hello. For those who don’t know me, I am Jessica, Joe’s oldest grandchild.

One thing that makes me very happy is that my Grandpa could be there on my wedding day in Yosemite. He even did my flowers for that day, and that is something I will never forget. Something that makes me a sad, is that my future children will never know the wonderful man, my Grandpa.

My Grandpa led a full and wonderful life. Just over two weeks ago, when we found out the cancer and moved into his lungs, I said to him, this is scary and horrible, but one day, when I am 78, I hope to look back and realize I did half as many incredible things as you. You traveled the world, you married your true love, you had three beautiful children, you celebrated your 50th anniversary in Africa with your entire family, and you changed many many people’s lives for the better.

The reason I am up here today is not to tell sad stories, but to tell happy, funny stories about the wonderful man I knew as Grandpa Joe. As many of you know, Joe and Barbara traveled the world together. They would often leave the country for two or more weeks to explore places many of us only dream of going. When they left, they needed to have someone watch their house, garden and dog. My husband E and I loved this job.

But, the thing we loved the most was my Grandpa’s hot tub in the backyard. It was a tiny little thing, in the middle of a beautiful wooded area of the yard. My Grandpa loved this little hot tub, and soaked in it everyday at 4:00 pm. When he was away, E and I loved it just as much. Grandpa knew this, and was happy to have us use the hot tub, but he had one rule- no swimsuits! Can you imagine my then boyfriend’s face when he is getting instructions from my Grandfather “you can use the hot tub- but no swimsuits allowed!” E was mortified; he couldn’t believe that my Grandpa was telling him to soak naked, with his granddaughter, who was also supposed to be naked! So, of coarse, we followed directions, we really had no choice!

The next time we were over, getting directions to house-sit, my Grandpa looked both E and I in the eyes, and said, “Remember, no swimsuits in the hot tub! Last time, I think you wore them (which we had not) and swimsuits make the water cloudy” E and I still laugh about those conversations to this day, and it is one of my favorite memories of my Grandpa.

Another favorite memory is when we celebrated Grandpa Joe’s birthday on the Serengeti in Africa. Joe and Barbara decided to take the entire family to Africa to celebrate their 50th anniversary. While there, Grandpa turned 77, we ate, sang, drank and laughed under the incredible African night sky. It is something I will never forget.

I want to end with a poem that my Grandpa enjoyed. He safely tucked it into a file that was supposed to be opened after he died, so, these are some words from his heart:

Don't cry at my grave, because I won't be there
I'll be in the breeze that ruffles your hair
I'll be in the sunshine, I'll be in the snow
I'll be in the places we used to go
I'll be in the memories, and in the funny things
I'll be in your shadow, and there in your dreams
I'll be in your greetings, but not in your goodbyes
I'll be in the reflection of your loving eyes
I'll always love you, and I'll always care
So don't cry at my grave site, because I won't be there
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