My Real Life

October 27, 2009

Fall Colors

Filed under: Uncategorized — Amy @ 6:26 am
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I don’t think it’s a secret how much I love autumn.

The nice thing is…I seem to have passed this on to Monkey Girl.

I picked up three new piano students last week, bringing my total to eight.  They are brothers and sisters, so I only have to drive to one location for those three lessons, which is a nice thing.

These lessons start right after Monkey Girl gets off the bus, so she and I hopped in the car and started driving.  The drive only took about five minutes, but she pulled out her book as we got in the car so she could get in as much reading as possible.  (I get it…I’d read while I drove if I could figure out how to do it.)

All of the sudden, I hear this gasp from the back seat.  I slam on the brakes and say, “What?  What?  What is it?”

Monkey Girl is straining forward in her seatbelt, staring out the windshield.

“Look Mom!” she whispered.  “Isn’t it the most beautiful thing you’ve ever seen?”

This is what she was looking at.

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Really…it was beautiful.  I pulled out my phone to take the picture and she and I just sat for a moment, enjoying the beautiful colors that autumn brings.  There is nothing like fall in the northeast.  Granted, we don’t have a New England fall, but the truth is, looking at this made me forget that it had been snowing a few days earlier and made me want to go home, start a fire in the fireplace, and curl up with a good book.  It was just beautiful.

Yep…that picture was the second most beautiful thing I was looking at that day.

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October 16, 2009

Under Attack

Filed under: Uncategorized — Amy @ 7:07 am
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I’m going to start this post with a disclaimer.  I write some of my blogs ahead of time, and this is one of those blogs.  Those of you who live in my area were all shocked and dismayed to find snow falling from the sky yesterday.  A good amount of snow.

Some have even asked if today’s blog will be about the snow.  To that, I say no.

I am ignoring the snow from yesterday.  I don’t believe in snow in October.  It didn’t happen, as far as I am concerned.

And so, I continue with my autumn blogging.


You may think that living in the suburbs allows a certain amount of safety from the dangers of the world.

You may think that fall in the suburbs is just beautiful colors and raking leaves.

And part of that is true.

Here are some pictures of our yard.  It’s still early fall and everything hasn’t really changed as much as it will in a few weeks.






Looks peaceful.  Looks like it will be a heck of a job to rake.  However, looks relatively safe.  Yes?


In the fall, we are constantly under attack.  We have to run from the front door to the car.  When the kids play outside, they need to wear helmets, because you never know when the missles will be flying.

What are these missles of which I speak?


I swept my deck the morning I took these next two photos.  I took these photos at 1:30 pm.



It would be one thing if the acorns were just gently falling from the trees, but I am convinced that the squirrels and chipmunks are actually sitting in the trees, taking their aim and hurling them at us. 

My van has little dents in the roof and hood from being pelted from the acorns.

Monkey Girl was actually awoken the other night by a particularly loud load of acorns being thrust out of the trees at the house.

Look at the lawn!


I don’t actually make them wear helmets, but we’ve all been hit in the head with the acorns and let me tell you, it’s not fun.

So, sure…come and visit us in the suburbs…but be careful.

You may be taking your life into your own hands.


September 14, 2009

Paring Down

Filed under: Uncategorized — Amy @ 6:48 am
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In the fall, I always feel the desire to settle in, to nest, to fill my cheeks with nuts in preparation for the long winter ahead.  Okay, perhaps not the last one, but you get the gist.

I’m usually pretty good at fighting the urge, but it’s tough sometimes.  It’s the law of nature to stock up and settle in as the days get shorter and the weather gets colder.

This year, I’ve decided to not only fight the urge, but to take myself in the opposite direction.  Instead of padding my nest, I’m going to purge my home.

Now, I’m a decluttering fanatic, so the truth is, we don’t have a lot of “stuff.”  I don’t really do knick-knacks, and I’m not a collector of things.  I thrive on organization and neatness.  I had toyed, for some time, with becoming a professional organizer.  Obviously, I didn’t.  Still think about it from time to time, however.

So, given this paucity of junk, what am I going to purge?

I’m starting here.


If you know me, you know that this is normally the last place I’d purge.  Books are breath to me.  There is nothing like the written word.  Holding a book.  Smelling a book.  Getting lost in a book.  Ahhh…

So, for me to start my purge here is a pretty big deal.

However, I started to think that many of my books are just decorations.  I read them.  I loved them.  But, I’m probably not going to read them again.  At least not many of the books on these bookshelves.

I have a few authors who I have collected over the years.  James Patterson.  John Sandford.  Jeffrey Deaver.  (Hmmm…they all start with the letter “J.”  Maybe there’s something to that.)

Anyway, I have all of their books.  Many of them are signed.  But, truth be told, while I loved them when I read them, I’m not going to read them again.  So, why do I keep them?

Now, these books…

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…these books, I will (and already have) read over and over.  These are books that touched me in one way or another, outside of the story.  So, these I will keep.  I’ll refill the shelves with these.

I’ve already listed the James Pattersons on eBay.  The Sandfords are next and then the Deavers.   I’ve loved all those series because I love the main characters.  Patterson writes about Alex Cross.  Sandford writes about Lucas Davenport and Deaver writes about Lincoln Rhyme.  Great main characters.  Really. 

However, I’ll wait for their next ones to come out and then I’ll borrow them from the library.  Because, again, I’ll read them, I’ll love them, and then I’ll put them on the shelf to never be read again.

Maybe you want to think about an autumn purge yourself.  Take a look around.  Do you love it all?  Do you need it all?  Will you use all of it again?  If not, perhaps it’s time to let some of it go.  After all, you can’t take it with you.

September 9, 2009

Feeling Real Crafty

Fall always sparks my creativity. 

It is my favorite season and I am definitely happiest in fall. 

To me, autumn is a time of nesting and getting the home prepared for the long winter ahead.  Must be my grandmothers farmer genes running through me.

Anyway, as I was home with Baby Monkey today, while we snuggled watching the Disney Channel, I pulled out my knitting needles and started knitting Monkey Girl a scarf for Christmas.  I made one for my Mom last year and Monkey Girl was envious.  So, I found some neat rainbow yarn and decided to knit one for her this year.  However, I just never started it.  So, today, I began.

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Monkey Girl is a creative little monkey, herself.  Last year, while I was making a lap quilt for my Mother (I did a lot of homemade gifts last year), Monkey Girl created a quilt for her American Girl doll.

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I think she did a GREAT job!  I was really proud of her. 

She’s also sewn her own pincushion and a pillow for her doll to go with the quilt.  This summer she started a quilt for herself.  She hasn’t picked it up in awhile, but I guarantee that tonight when I start working on a project of my own (can’t say what…that person might read this blog) that she’ll ask to get it out and start working on it again.

Monkey girl has also made her own greeting cards from a kit she bought awhile ago.

Here are a few:

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She has long since paid herself back for the kit and still has cards to sell.  She wants to set up a card stand at the end of the driveway one of these weekends.  Fine with me.  My little entrepreneur.

So, I’ve definitely got the autumn nesting, crafty bug.  Although I miss her like crazy when she goes to bed, I can’t wait until she goes to sleep so I can keep knitting.  I don’t care if I look like a granny, sitting and knitting while I watch tv.  It’s one of life’s simple pleasures for me.

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