A Good Read

January 24, 2008 at 10:20 pm | Posted in Books | Leave a comment

I just finished reading Wicked with my book club. It was such an excellent book. I am now a fan of Gregory Maguire and I have ordered two more of his books, one being the follow-up to Wicked, which is Son of a Witch, sorry to my fellow book clubers if I let out a spoiler there, hopefully you are past that part.

Wicked is the story of the three witches of Oz and their lives before Dorothy’s arrival. Elphaba is the infamous green Wicked Witch of the West. Glinda is the fairy-like good and beloved Witch of the North, though in the book they do not call her that. And Nessarose is the Wicked Witch of the East, who also happens to be Elphie’s sister (or is she?!- sorry again for the spoiler).

I think the one reason I really liked this book is because it is yet another reminder that things are not always as they seem. Things/people/events that we seem to think we have a very good understanding of may very well be misinterpreted. Actually, most of the time, things are never what they seem. People and their backgrounds may seem very right and wrong to some people, but if you turn the viewfinder a little and examine things from another perspective, sometimes we may not seem so different from the people we choose to stereotype. It reminds me to try to see things from other people’s prespecive, to look at them, to hear their stories, before jumping to conclusions and putting people on one side of a line or in a specific box.

Thorughout the book Elphie is constantly trying to do what is right and what is good. She grows up with a very devout ministerial father and a wild and eccentric mother, both of whom look upon her as evil incarnate and a punishment for thier wrongs. She is intelligent, dedicated, and a free thinker. This is the root of what some would view as her downfall. But now that I know the whole story, she is not the one who suffered a downfall, she stood for what she believed to be right until the end. She did not accept the status quo or the popular – yes, pun inteded- way of thought. Everything she tries to do is some how misread, misinterpreted, and inevitably causes a chain of bad events which she feels responsible for.

Read it, it will change your view of the classic story, but it will also teach you this life lesson. The antagonist is not always the antagonist just because someone told you that you are to fear, hate or rebuke them. Perhaps if we were more willing to get to know people before we judged their exterior or our perception of them we would have a better understanding of others as a whole. Perhaps we should all apply that to our world and those we share it with.

Just for fun, because I do love Idina Menzel. Look for Taye at the end, he is so proud!


Catching Up

January 24, 2008 at 5:20 pm | Posted in Family | 2 Comments

My last blog was on the 2nd! I can’t believe that, obviously not a good month for blogging on my part. Thanks to a never ending stomach virus I am now back online and catching up on all my favorite blogs! HMM, what has been happening.

One thing I want to mention is a very special day for two of my favorites on this earth.

January 19 was a special day for two “girls” in my life. It was the 26th Birthday of my best friend in Arizona. Jen is my long lost sister who unfortunately lives very far away. Who knew that when I went back to college for my sophomore year and found a blond haired, wide-eyed, shy girl waiting for me in my dorm room, we would have had so many memories to share. She is one of those people who have just seemed to have always been a part of my life. I love you Jen, Happy Birthday- as in everyday, I miss you!

Another reason January 19 was very special is that it was the one year anniversary that Ellie joined our family! The story behind Ellie goes as this:

I was driving in East Nashville following some appointments. I look over on the other side of road and see a little dog running off of the interstate onto the on ramp dodging big rigs and cars and looking very scared at all the mean people honking to have her get out of the way. I have no choice, I have to keep going straight and get continue on my path, there is literally a barrier keeping me from being able to go help this poor, lost, cold animal (it was 19 degrees that day). I pick up my phone to call Metro to tell them to help this poor thing. (I rationalize this by telling myself that it will at least have food and shelter and the hope of a home at the shelter) As I circle onto the interstate via the ramp I am unable to get onto the interstate due to a line of 3 semis themselves unable to get over and make room for me. On this particular ramp if you don’t get off the ramp then you are forced to get off the interstate you were attempting to get on and head in the other direction of the road you just got off of – confused yet?

Long story short, I was forced to get off again and head back toward the little dog. I saw this as divine intervention knowing that God would not allow me to pass by this poor little thing twice. I pulled onto the on ramp going back onto the interstate and there she was still running in traffic. I pull over on the on ramp and she runs right up to me, jumps in my car, and literally collapses in my front seat from exhaustion. She immediately lays her head in my lap the whole way home – she still does this and I love it, it is her ultimate form of appreciation. I feed her Wheat Thins (thanks Momo), which she devours. She most likely had not eaten in days, from the bones showing thru her skin it had obviously been a long time. I head home, hubby is home with a terrible cold. I pull in having no idea what I am going to do.

I head upstairs. He is automatically confused as to why I am home. I said, “I need to show you something.” He thinks I have wrecked the car. He begins to panic. I open the door to the garage to show him this poor little thing sitting and shaking in the back seat all curled up scared to death. Hubby, being the tender heart he is, automatically falls in love with her and needs the entire story. We agree we are not going to keep “it”. There is no way Lily would deal well with that.

Luckily, Hubby’s brother has been wanting a dog and we are sure he will want this one. We call him. He is out of town for the week, but wants her and will come get her as soon as he is home from his business trip. Great. We refuse to name her. We refer to her as “puppy”.

Well, three days later and many sad cuddles and wolfed down bowls of food later, I realize that she is the most fragile and scared little thing I have ever seen and she is very attached to me and I to her. Hmmmm, how do I go about getting Hubbs to say I can keep her. Let me just tell you Ellie began to work her magic. She cuddled with him, she used the sad eyes, she made him grow attached too. He continues in his quest to give her to the brother. “We will see her all the time.” “She will be happy.” “Lily”-who was having a hard time adjusting to our new visitor-“will be happy.” I begin to think I will not be able to let her go, but I continue to let him think I can.

Well, the day comes, brother shows up from out of town to meet his new dog. Well, let’s just say she FREAKS out! I mean, she goes into seizure like smelly fits and refuses to allow him to touch her much less take her with him. She literally hides under the bed, behind the couch, anything not to have to be around him He is less than happy that his new dog is scared to death of him. I happily tell him I want to keep her, it just seems right not to put her through another stressful event. That is how she became ours. Ellington Parkway, named for the road I found her on.

She has been the best addition to our home. We have learned a few things about her

  • DO not allow strange men around her -she was done wrong by someone and she doesn’t trust easily
  • She can not be shut up in a room (we learn this only after leaving her in the guest room to go to church and return to shredded carpet) obviously she was done wrong, she panicked, she tried to get out. The vet said her lack of claws was the result of her digging out of somewhere really bad.
  • She came to us starving- literally- she is very defensive of her food. On that note too, she will eat anything you put in front of her.
  • Even the vet cannot tell us what kind she is. She is a certified mutt, but she is the softest dog I have ever felt in my life, she seriously feels like a teddy bear.

Since we have no idea how old she is her honorary birthday is now January 19, the day of her adoption into her family. We love her so much and can’t imagine our little family without her- though I am sure Lily can! She is much better around men now, except one said Brother, how strange is that! It as if she knew he was the one who was going to take her away; they are so intuitive. She is safe and happy now – that is all that matters!

New York Part II

January 3, 2008 at 1:33 am | Posted in Photos | 1 Comment
Restaurant view overlooking Times Square
Christmas Eve ServiceBrooklyn Bridge

Statue of Liberty

Church at World Trade Center Site

Our only mistake on the subway- we wound up in Brooklyn, one of the oldest subway stations.
You have to take the E train to the WTC site!

More for the Rentheads

Grand Central Station

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