Growing * Reading * Watching * Wearing


My African Violet keeps blooming and blooming! A little neglect goes a long way!



I just finished reading Muffins & Mayhem, by Suzanne Beecher, who created She also founded a magazine, ran a restaurant, and has done so many interesting things. I love how she invents her life and continues creating new things.

I absolutely loved this book! It's filled with recipes, but is also a memoir recanting stories of her personal and writing life.

So much of the book I can identify with. I always have little notebooks with me and around the house, so when  thoughts start swirling around in my head, which they often do, I can write them down and save them for later.

Not just because I want to remember them, but because I want them to stop and get out of my head. Over the years I've found that that only way to make the words stop is to write them down. I think that's when you know you're a writer. When you have to write just to stay sane!

Beecher tells a similar story about an idea that she needed to write down when she was in the grocery store and had to write on anything that she could find. She also explains her hesitancy to call herself a writer. She was writing a great deal, but felt like she was pretending to be a writer.

She finally gave in and decided to actually consider herself a writer when an editor of a major magazine called her and asked if she'd like to write a monthly column. She shares her thought process.
"Okay, Suzanne, this is your moment. Are you a writer? Can you at least tell yourself you're a writer so you can accept this project? Tell yourself you're a writer, start acting like a writer, and pretty soon even you will believe it. And now, finally ... I do."
She also writes her feelings about baking, which I agree with on such a gut level and is one of the reasons that I don't like to bake when I'm in a bad mood. The movie Like Water For Chocolate, explains these feelings too.
"When I give someone cookies I've made from scratch, I'm giving them the best of me. Most people wouldn't believe it, but if I'm not in the mood to bake, yet I have to anyway, baking feels like a chore and my cookies don't turn out. They fall in the middle, or taste strange, like I forgot one of the ingredients--and in a way, that's what I did. For some reason, I wasn't able to add the joy I usually feel when I'm baking. Normally, when I'm mixing up cookie batter, I'm picturing the person I'm baking for, I can see the smile on their face after they open the bag of cookies, and I'm hoping they'll feel special.

Cooking is a powerful thing, especially baking. ...

Baking chocolate-chip cookies is like writing. When there's joy, I'm into the task at hand, not thinking about anything else, giving it everything I have to give--giving my best to someone else."
Next up, I'm getting ready to start reading Apron Anxiety, by Alyssa Shelasky.



I just watched these films:

You've probably noticed that I like foreign films. These were all very good and filled with people who I absolutely did not understand. I guess that's kind of how it can be looking at other people's lives from the outside. We don't understand their internal monologues and motivations.

Then again, sometimes I don't even understand my own until I step back, take some quiet time, meditate, and look deeper. Even though I can be very social, I'm rather introverted.

I mentioned before about all the thoughts and ideas swirling in my head. My inner life can be rather boisterous, so my outer life requires maybe more calm and quiet than people who look to things like mountain climbing and bungee jumping to feel good.

Too many large loud social events drain me. I usually have fun, but I make sure that I don't do too many in too short a period of time. For me to recharge, I need quiet and calm. Alone time. It also helps me to get writing ideas and to create in general. This TED Talk about the power of introverts is quite good. But I digress...

I'm getting ready to watch these:


Recently I've been noticing that street signs and highway billboards look more blurry than usual. The first time that this happened to me, I kept wondering why the quality of these things seemed to be deteriorating. Why didn't they paint these things better??!!

When I had my eyes examined I found out that it was me, not the signs or boards, and that I needed glasses for distance. 

Recently, I had my eyes examined again and did indeed need a slightly stronger prescription. So it was time for new glasses. A few months earlier, I read on the blog  A Cup of Jo, about Lookmatic. She's offering her readers a 20% discount with them and I found a new pair of glasses. I can't wait to wear them!

I must be going through another red phase. I also got these shoes that are my namesake. Love them! I usually don't splurge like this, but needed a cute pair of comfortable shoes with decent support that will last and can be returned if they don't fit right. Zappos lets you return shoes for up to a year with free shipping both ways. You can't go wrong with that kind of trial period. They seem to fit in every respect so far. And how could I resist the name?

*Updated 9/22/2012*  Sadly, I returned the Lisa shoes today. They started looking very worn soon after I got them and have only gotten worse. Luckily Zappos return policy holds up. Free return with no argument. Those were the prettiest shoes, so I'll miss them, but I'll look for a replacement pair.

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Tracy said…
Sooo many goodies here, Lisa! Thank you for the great reading tips, and those violets. African violets remind me of my grandmother (Dad's mom), who had them all over her house--everywhere. LOVE those red shoes! And I adore foreign films-- take me away to a new locale + a different language=bliss! ;o) Happy Weekend ((HUGS))
Lisa Johnson said…
tracy - Glad you like the goodies! I like your Grandmother's idea to put the African Violets all over the house. I think I'll get a different color and try it. Happy Weekend to you too! : )

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