It’s been slow going getting back to regular life after losing my brother, but it’s happening. Life, as they say, really does go on. And while he remains in my heart (and always ALWAYS will), I’m doing my best to not think about the fact that he’s gone. Thinking leads to sadness/crying/depression. Distraction, aka Not Thinking, leads to feeling normal and finding the happiness that is present in my everyday.
So. Distraction it is. Here’s a bit of what’s been distracting me lately. ;-)
1. A couple of weeks ago I started my annual tradition of making a ridiculous amount of salsa that will (hopefully) last us all year. We’ve gotten totally spoiled by homemade salsa (it only takes ONE jar for that to happen). I made 53 quarts of it last year and we have 3 quarts left. (We LIKE our salsa.) Last year was the first time I finally made enough to last us without having to be stingy with it. I’ve already made about 27 quarts, but was worried that I’d missed the end of tomato season and would have to spend the year rationing the salsa (*gasp* the HORROR). But on Wednesday I visited my favorite local Amish farmstand and snagged another bushel of tomatoes. So. My weekend will be spent gratefully canning more salsa. (Here’s my recipe, if you’re interested.)
2. I’ve also picked up my knitting again, which feels SO good. This is a yearly thing for me—after the heat of summer, as my part of the world starts to cool itself off, I get the urge to pick up my needles and MAKE. I’m working on a sweater that I started quite a while back and plan to finish this fall. Luckily it’s soccer season, so I’ll get plenty of knitting time at practices and games. My overzealous knitting urge even has visions of making sweaters for all the kids for Christmas (or at least this winter)…but if I plan to get writing the next book, that’s so NOT going to happen. But still. I’ve got the urge. :-) (Maybe I can do it if I make vests…hmmm.)
3. Fabric has been calling me, too, and I washed and ironed these beautiful batik fabrics with plans to make a lap quilt for myself. A couple of Christmases ago, the kids and I made lap quilts for them as well as for Steve. So everyone in the house has their own quilt to snuggle under during winter while reading or watching a movie. Everyone, that is, except me. I aim to remedy that soon.
4. Book recs! (Because I’ve had time to read again! Color me HAPPY.) :D These are the stand-outs from all I’ve been reading lately.
YA (for everyone)
Mind Games by Kiersten White
NA (for the 17+ crowd)
Silver Heart by Victoria Green (A sweet and VERY steamy love story…I really loved this book. This was her debut and I’m (im)patiently waiting for more.)
Falling by Mia Josephs /aka Jolene Perry (This book was SO sweet, SO good…I couldn’t put it down and spent an entire afternoon reading it. The final epilogue made me laugh it was so perfect. I’m definitely going to be picking up some more Mia Josephs/Jolene Perry books.)
Charade by Nyrae Dawn
Tight Knit by Allie Brennan (Actually I just started reading this, but I’m loving it so far so I’m including it here because I’m pretty sure it would make a future Book Rec list anyway.)
5. Lastly, I have been thanking my LUCKY, LUCKY STARS for all of YOU. I have been absolutely floored by the amazing response Anywhere has gotten, and the incredible reviews that have been coming in. Like this one. And this one. Oh, and this one is just HOLY COW. (I could go on and on, and if you want to read more, go check out more reviews on Goodreads.) You guys make my heart swell. Thank you for taking my book into your hearts and minds, and loving it. It’s the most incredible feeling EVER.
Have a great weekend, everyone!