Wedding Memory: Something Borrowed

Photo by Eva Russo

I was all set with my something old, something new, and something blue items, but an hour before my wedding I didn’t have anything borrowed. I wasn’t really worried about this (I didn’t set out to have all four, it’s just one of those sayings that pops into your mind on your wedding day). But when I mentioned this to my two wedding party people, who were hanging out with me before the wedding (the most crucial of all wedding responsibilities. That day is exciting, but nervewracking, it’s nice to have friends around), Jodi immediately took off her bracelet and said, do you want to borrow Nana Bossio’s bracelet? I did, of course. And that’s how I ended up with something borrowed. It’s wonderful how things sometimes just fall into place.

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Wedding Memory: Something Borrowed

Mighty Life List #20, Part 1: Visit every library in the DC system, take a picture, and check out a book.

There are 25 libraries in the DCPL system, and I’m hoping to make it to all of them. Although I’ve been to an handful already, Watha T. Daniel, Shaw’s library that just reopened in a brand new building is the first I photographed. I think it’s really beautiful and was getting a lot of use when I went by on a Tuesday afternoon.

Watha T. Daniel Library

The ground floor had the children’s section, along with new books, large print, and DVDs.

Ground Floor

The second floor had the adult and teen books, both fiction and nonfiction, along with study rooms and lots of tables and chairs which were getting a lot of use as folks took advantage of the free wi-fi.

stairs

I enjoyed browsing, and ended up checking out two books: The United States of Arugula by David Kamp, which I am already enjoying and Easy hikes close to home, Washington, D.C. by Paul Elliott, which I’m hoping will give us some ideas for good weekend hikes.

1 down, 24 to go.

Mighty Life List #20, Part 1: Visit every library in the DC system, take a picture, and check out a book.

Marriage Equality: A Rant

Dear Well-Meaning, Soon-to-be-ex-coworker of Jami’s,

I know that you are a well-intentioned, liberal lady who is all for the homos, so I want to give you a little piece of friendly advice. Do not ask your soon-to-be-ex-coworker if her new employer will “recognize” her marriage.  It’s a shitty thing to ask, and here’s why…

Your soon-to-be-ex-coworker (ie, my wife) is legally married in the District of Columbia. I’m sure that you know this because it would have been hard to miss the hullabaloo when it became legal earlier this year. This means that my marriage is a legal marriage and that it is EXACTLY the same as every other legal marriage in the District of Columbia. This is the beauty of marriage equality. This is exactly why marriage equality is so important. Because suddenly relationships between two consenting adults, any two consenting adults, who choose to marry are treated the exactly the same. If your DC employer will pay for the health care of the opposite-sex spouses of their employees, for example, they will also now be paying for the health care of the same-sex spouses of their employees. This is why Catholic Charities is no longer covering spouses on their health care plans.

DC’s move to marriage equality wasn’t an empty gesture, it was a very real, legal, serious thing. And by asking if my marriage is “recognized”, you are saying it is different. You are the ONLY person who is saying that it’s different. Which I am sure is not what your well-meaning, liberal self intended. My best advice? If you believe in marriage equality, recognize all marriages as equal. Practice what you preach. And if there is some way in which my marriage is not equal (there is still that pesky little matter of the federal government), and it’s something that I want to talk you about, I will bring it up. Because if you bring it up, especially if you imply that my marriage isn’t recognized, it’s just going to make me feel like you see my marriage as “less than”, which I most certainly do not and at which I will probably take offense.

I know the question was not meant in the manner in which it was received, and living in a glass house, I have no wish to throw stones. I’m sure, as a well-meaning, liberal white lady myself, I have made my share of well-intentioned, but not-so-appropriate remarks. So please just think about what I said, and the next time you are faced with a coworker or casual acquaintance who is married to someone of the same sex, don’t focus on the differences that you may see between their marriage and other marriages, focus on what is the same – or just don’t focus on their marriage at all. Thanks!

Carrie

Marriage Equality: A Rant

July Round-Up

I read 14 books in July, all fiction. I’m really going to have to work on my “read more non-fiction” goal.

Foiled by Jane Yolen. Jane Yolen has written a lot of children’s and YA books, and now she has ventured into the realm of graphic novels. This one involves a high school fencer, and was quite enjoyable.

Kit Feeny: On the Move by Michael Townsend. This is a new (to me at least) graphic novel series for kids. In size and style it reminds me of the Babymouse series, although I think it will appeal to boys much more than Babymouse does.

The Girl Who Kicked the Hornet’s Nest by Stieg Larsson. The final book in Larsson’s series. Much anticipated and throughly enjoyed. I’ve seen the first two (Swedish) movies now as well and they are quite well done.

Black is for Beginnings by Laurie Faria Stolarz. This is part of a whole YA series, and what is interesting me is that the first four books were regular novels and then with book five, there was a switch to a graphic novel format. Not my favorite, but then I don’t think I was quite the target audience.

Styx and Stones by Carola Dunn. Daisy Dalrymple takes on a village poison pen. Amusing as always.

Major Pettigrew’s Last Stand by Helen Simonson. I loved this book, which tells of a romance between a widowed army major and a (also widowed) village shopkeeper (who happens to be Pakistani). Highly recommended.

The Good Son by Michael Gruber. I picked this up after NPR recommended it as a summer read. (And I just saw that Nancy Pearl also recommended it yesterday). It’s a thriller set mostly and Pakistan. It was indeed a good read, and will make a good movie one of these days. Lots of action.

Rattle His Bones by Carola Dunn. Another Daisy Dalrymple – this time she’s solving a mystery in a Natural History museum.

Leaving the Bellweathers by Kristin Clark Venuti. This book had shown up on my Amazon recommended list after I rated The Willoughbys so highly, so I was very eager to read. So eager that I bought it, since it never showed up at DCPL. I was quite disappointed. While I’m sure kids would find it amusing, it wasn’t anywhere near as *smart* as The Willoughbys. Read that book instead!

Kit Feeny: The Ugly Necklace by Michael Townsend. The second Kit Feeny book. There are only two out so far, but I bet it will become a popular series. It’s well done. Good for new independent readers.

The Saint of Incipient Insanities by Elif Shafak. This was a book club selection. I’m so lucky to have such a great book club. Elif Shafak is a Turkish writer, and this was the first book she wrote in English. The only other Turkish writer I’ve read is Orhan Pamuk, and I enjoyed this book much more. It lead to an interesting discussion on being a “foreigner” in another culture and on mental illness. I’m interested in reading another book by her – maybe Bastard of Istanbul.

Prime Baby by Gene Luen Yang. Yang is such an interesting graphic novelist to me. I don’t really get how his brain works, but I do usually enjoy his works. In this one an elementary school aged boy becomes convinced that his sister is an alien, with interesting results.

The Devil Amongst the Lawyers by Sharyn McCrumb. Sharyn McCrumb is one of my favorite authors, and this is her latest book in the Ballad series. The books are all mysteries, set in the Appalachian Mountain of Virginia/Tennessee, and they are beautifully written. I don’t think this was her strongest one, but it was still quite good. If you’ve never read her before, I recommend starting with the first book in the series, If Ever I Return, Pretty Peggy-O.

Faithful Place by Tana French. Tana French is an excellent mystery writer and if you like mysteries, you should definitely be reading hers. This is her third book and I find her writing less formulaic than other mystery writers. Of the three, this was my least favorite, but I would still rate it pretty highly. Recommended.

July Round-Up

Mighty Life List #10: Buy a new sewing machine and learn to machine quilt.

Most of my bonus this year went towards our wedding, but I did keep some for myself, to buy a new sewing machine. My old sewing machine was quite old, circa World War II to be exact. You can see it here. It is truly lovely, and did okay with the piecing, but couldn’t handle machine quilting. Not that I had ever done any machine quilting, but I had aspirations. Aspirations of quilts that didn’t take me years to finish. So, I bought a new sewing machine:

Bernina Bernette 82e

I’m still figuring it out. Trial and error is the way I learned to quilt back in college, and it’s the way I’m learning to machine quilt as well. The speed is pretty addictive though. It took me no time at all to finish this quilt for my neighbors who are having a baby.

 

You can tell that I actually machine quilted it here:

 

I’m pretty thrilled – both with the machine and the result. Here’s to many more quilts!

Mighty Life List #10: Buy a new sewing machine and learn to machine quilt.