Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Summer Reading

I have been feeling a little slacker-ly. My bathrooms haven't been cleaned in nearly a week, the floor has not been vacuumed in longer, and my clothes and laundry still need to be folded and put away. On top of all that, even with the free time that my half-day summer school job affords, I skipped a day of blogging.

Still, I think I have some leverage for my recent lack of accomplishments. Last week saw me cleaning the house like a dervish, and I was only prevented from finishing the carpets by the vacuuming overheating due to an improperly installed bag (oops). Also, yesterday's weather was something less than summery. The morning started off with a 7:00 AM thunderstorm (which I loved) but then petered out into tepid rain and unimpressive gray clouds. I think my energy and motivation were sapped by the tired weather.

Besides, it's not like my days are empty. They are quite full, actually -- of biking, cooking, reading, yoga, gardening, and walking with the Best Husband Ever. Take today, for example. I got up early (although not early enough -- more on that later) and did a cardio workout. After work, I biked home for lunch, which is a four mile trip, the last third consisting of a major hill. The very hill pictured over on the right side of this post, in fact, which looks a whole lot kinder in a photograph than it is in real life.

I planned to make a green smoothie for lunch (recipe below!), explore an alternate route down the hill that is less steep than the ascents I've been climbing, then trade my bike for my car (still parked at school), go home for the pups, and head to the park. Whew! Lots of steps, to be sure, but it seemed like a good plan nonetheless. Unfortunately, my quick "explore alternate route" theory turned into a twelve mile trek over windy, hilly roads, not helped by the jeans I had most misguidedly donned and an increasing need to pee. So maybe you can understand why I didn't get much accomplished today. Ah, well.

Still, despite my poor wardrobe choice and hummingbird-sized bladder, the biking continues to be fun. I'm quite proud of myself for being able to crank out that kind of a ride in less than optimal conditions. However, that's not the biggest goal I've set for myself this week. Nor are the gargantuan mountains of laundry lurking about the house or the dog-hairy carpet. Instead, the task I've set for myself is to read more.

I'm an avid reader. I have been since I can remember, a fact for which I am very grateful. I read every night before bed, and love chilling out on the YMCA's stepmill with a book. (In fact, I read almost the entirety of Sylvia Plath's The Bell Jar while elliptical-ing!) At the moment, I'm engrossed in Pride and Prejudice and Zombies. That's right -- zombies. Apparently, a man named Seth Grahame-Smith decided to insert segments of zombie-related material straight into Austen's original text. My assessment so far? I am thoroughly enjoying it, which comes as a surprise since I despised reading Pride and Prejudice for my high school literature class. I mean, how can you not love a book that starts like this?:

It is a truth universally acknowledged that a zombie in possession of brains must be in want of more brains. Never was this truth more plain than during the recent attacks at Netherfield Park, in which a household of eighteen was slaughtered and consumed by a horde of the living dead.

I devoured some more of the zombie-fied novel as I drank this green monster:

Double Apple Green Monster

1-2 handfuls spinach
1 small apple, diced and unpeeled
1/2 cup pineapple
1/2 cup skim milk
1 cyrstallized ginger medallion
1 handful ice cubes
juice of 1 lime
fresh stevia and cinnamon basil to taste

Blend all of the ingredients together in a blender or food processor until smooth. If you don't have crystallized ginger, just substitute 1/4 tsp ground ginger. Also, a half packet of stevia powder or 1 T honey can stand in for the fresh leaves, and 1/4 tsp cinnamon can replace the cinnamon basil.

Serves 1.

But as wonderful as fiction reading is, that's not exactly the bookish goal I've set for myself. It doesn't even really have to do with books. More like Book, actually. My God-time has slipped severely since the start of summer, probably due to my less structured schedule. That's no excuse, though, and it's not okay. I've been feeling some emotional and definitely spiritual fall-out as a result and am determined to get back on track.

The plan? Get up thirty minutes earlier in the morning and read some of the Bible, pray, journal, and maybe even sing a little. I started yesterday morning, and so far my record is zero for two. I'm determined, though, to spend some precious time with the Creator who made me, and made me what I am even as I type this. Repairing my relationship with God is more important than working out, doing the laundry, or grocery shopping. Besides, I miss Him.


  1. I saw your post below your WW one and thought that was a nice picture, too. Sipping a cool drink, reading a book. Glad I did.Repairing my relationship with God is more important than working out, doing the laundry, or grocery shopping. Besides, I miss Him.Thanks for writing that. I can relate. Have a wonderful day.

  2. Thanks for your encouraging words, GroovyMom! And for visiting, of course. :D


"I am glad you are here with me."
― J.R.R. Tolkien, The Return of the King