Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Kettles, Packages, and Noodles: Some Things That Make Me Happy

It's time for a favorites list, isn't it? I think so. Here are some things I'm kinda crazy about right now.

Ok, I was all excited about my local grocery store being bought out by Macey's grocery, which has great prices and selection. I rarely rarely went to the Macey's that was a few towns away because a) it was a few towns away and b) it was crowded! I don't like crowds. I mean it wasn't Walmart crowded, vicious and soulless, but it was always packed. And it attracted couponers like nobody's business so whatever happened to be on sale that week was always sold out. Aargh. It encouraged me to have bad feelings toward bargain shoppers and as a rule I try to not have bad feelings toward any particular shopping constituency. So I loyally frequented my own local (empty but for Saturday nights) grocery store because it was, well, local and empty. When word came that Macey's was moving in, I was so excited to have one close by. Little did I realize that with it would come the crowds I so despise. So it's a good-bad situation. And don't worry, I'm coping, but what I really wanted to talk about before I got mired in all the exposition was THIS!!

These!! Bear River Valley cereals, have you seen them? They sell them at Macey's and they are oh so blog-worthy. I had all but cut out cold cereal for lots of high and moral reasons I'm not going into and then I discovered this line. Yes, they are still a processed food, but here is the list of ingredients from this very bag and you can't tell me that your heart doesn't get a little thrill when reading it: Whole grain wheat, evaporated-milled sugar, gelatin. Freshness preserved with vitamin E (mixed tocopherols). Three (THREE) ingredients plus mixed tocopherols which I don't know what they are but I'm trying to bury my head in the sand on that one so don't tell me if you do know. They are more expensive but they are made in Utah and they have far less packaging than normal cereals. There are I think six or so varieties and I am so very pleased with them.

And this... I adore.

I don't know if you know this about me, but I am secretly British. And when I wear my Burberry London perfume it's easier for me to fantasize about walking through the drizzly streets of London with my belted trench and plaid scarf and answering to the name of Pippa. Popping into little bookshops in Notting Hill and having Hugh Grant fall for me. And if you are still buying perfume at a department store and haven't tried fragrancenet.com, you need to. They have awesome prices on so many great perfumes and always have a discount code to use.

But I'm not only stuck in the city. Pippa just as often hails from the countryside and now I've found her perfect address. Edgecombe St. Mary.

If you haven't read this book ohmygosh go do so now! It is easily one of the best books I've read in a long long time. It's so charming. And witty. And biting, but gently so. And perfectly lovely. I will actually read this one again, which I rarely do, because each word is so enjoyable, like an Austen novel, where getting there is 95% of the fun. I'm glad I have a hard copy of this book, it's meant for writing your name in the front cover and dog-earing.

Every good book needs a companion beverage. My recommendation for this fall would be Nutella hot chocolate. I'll give you a moment to swoon ................................. It's simple really; you mix hot milk with a spoonful of unsweetened cocoa powder, two spoonfuls of Nutella, a bit of cream (whipped or not) and a dash of vanilla. It's okay to cry when you take your first sip. Lots of people do. 
Here's to you, Nutella, sweet nectar of life. I love you dearly.

I recently got on Pinterest and it turns out it's not really my thing, but the good that has come out of it is my finding this blog: Hair Romance. All those pictures of blond romantic updos you've seen everybody pinning? They're from this blog and they're beautiful.

I estimate that in one year, my hair will be long enough for most of these and I'm so excited and determined not to cut!

I'm also crazy about my little brother getting married last weekend. Or at least, I yanked myself back from the brink of crazy right in the nick of time. I am embarrassed to say I was crying more than anyone there. My mom, the bride's dad, everyone. At one point I was this close to breaking into heaving sobs. I could feel my shoulders start to convulse and push me forward into my own lap but fortunately was able to catch myself just before I lost it. What was the matter with me? I think the reasons are almost to tender to share, but seeing him being joined to someone who knows exactly who he is and loves him with all her heart made my little cup of joy overflow.

Photo by Stephanie Ryan

I mean really. Could they be any more gorgeous? It's like a solar eclipse. You can only look at them through a paper plate with a hole poked in the middle.

Also! I'm uber happy about this new blogger setup. This has been the easiest post I've ever put together. Let's hear it for cutting and pasting! And for a preview function that (imagine) gives a true preview! And for running out of steam by the end of a post......