March was indeed mad, and I'm not talking about basketball. My calendar for the spring and summer has started to fill up with lots of fun stuff, but it also makes me feel like I'm always running to catch up. Sometimes I feel like adulthood is crushing me, even when it's a priority of mine to "stop the glorification of busy." Our extended family has been struggling with some significant health issues, and some other big changes as well, so that has all been on my heart during March.
Best Movie: I watched two Ryan Gosling movies (shhh), both great in different ways. "Blue Valentine", which I saw first, had me crying into my pillow for about 3 days and I can't say I really recommend it (if you do watch it, there's a lot of language and sex, consider yourself warned), but it was done incredibly. It's the story of a crumbling marriage, interrupted by memories from when the couple's love was stronger, and it's so accurate in some ways, but then crushing to see people who don't have Christ to turn to in their struggles. Next, I watched "Lars and the Real Girl" which I can highly recommend. The premise may scare you, but it's actually totally clean, and is a beautiful look at what loves is in relationships, family, the community, and for people you don't know how to deal with.
Best Music: I was really impressed by this new kid on the block, Kat Dahlia. First off, I love her name, but she has a lot else going for her too. It's one of very few things I've heard recently that struck me as new. If Amy Winehouse and Adele had a baby that rapped, it would be Kat Dahlia. So far, her messages are good and clean. I hope she makes it big.
Best Recipe: Jonas and I invented a yummy cocktail, but I was most excited about these Chocolate Blackberry Mille-Feuille (or "blackberry stacks" as I call them), probably my new favorite dessert. SO decadent, but not over the top. They're a breeze to make, too! Oh, and these coconut shrimp in curry sauce (I linked to the pin rather than the blog, because I added my own notes on the pin). AND we visited Zaytoon's in Santa Barbara for the first time - amazing food, and can't beat the atmosphere. I especially loved the walls of blooming jasmine.
Best book: I still haven't made it through the book I've been reading since February, but I'm trying to use these monthly review posts as accountability/motivation to read real books. I get so excited when I have the chance to watch a movie and it's actually good and then I can report on it, but books take longer (obvs.) I'm not sure I'm even going to have good things to say about my book when I finish. Anyway... all that is my excuse for having struck out on book reading again, this month. I did hear an excerpt from "Ladies and Gentlemen, the Bible" which I found very entertaining and clever.
Best web stuff: Mer, nothing astounding. But I was looking through my costuming pins and am re-loving this gem by Christian Gaillard [image].
- Our GC (gospel community) at Element put on Cinderella's Closet, an event where we collected a bunch of gently used formal dresses and girls from the community could come pick one out for free, rather than stress about prom costs. It was a success! If you know anyone who'd be interested in participating next year, let me know and I'll hook you up.
- BEST THING: My brother-in-law Jason and his wife Danielle got approved to adopt their 5-year-old son James from Thailand! I'm so excited to be a thai-food-cooking auntie and that Ishmael will have his first cousin.
- We went to Santa Barbara with Jon & Michelle for a Heartless Bastards concert, which we thoroughly enjoyed, despite extremely drunk people with no sense of personal space (yeehaw!?). That was also the occasion of our fabulous dinner at Zaytoon's in some of our most favoritest company.
- I'm one of those peeps that gets so wrapped up in the fun stuff surrounding holidays that I struggle to remember their real reasons. I cling to any moments where something beyond presents and food break through to my heart. On our way home from Heartless Bastards at 1 in the morning on Good Friday, driving through empty dark streets, I had this moment of realization of how hopeless the world must have felt on that Saturday between when Jesus died and when he rose again. I imagined my most lonely, depressed day and then then imagined having nothing to hope for. No light at the end of the tunnel, ever. And I was so thankful that our Lord did rise from the dead. And that I wasn't on Earth on that dark, dark night.
- 1/3 through the year, I have not accomplished any of my resolutions so far (one painting, one class, cooking on our grill), and the school one is especially depressing to me. I don't want to talk about it right now... sad face.
- I've been losing track of baby names...
Ishmael's 5th Month:
I'm at that stage where I kind of tear up when I look at him because to me, he couldn't possibly be any cuter. It kind of grosses me out when other moms are like that though, so I keep my adoration on the down-low in public. He got his first cold this month, which totally freaked me out at first (a lot of gagging and gasping for air), but he was such a champ and seemed even more cheerful than usual. He keeps up the cough (now fake), just to hear himself and grin at his accomplishments. He also got his first vaccine (besides one when he was born), and he barely let out a peep! I also have to boast, he's 18 lbs. (90th percentile) and 27 inches (97th percentile!). Slow down, yo! As soon as my avacadoes ripen, he's going to get his first solid food (he's desperately trying to grab everyone else's and watching with puppy eyes when we eat). We've already been letting him taste this and that, and cracking up like kids at the faces he makes. He loves peek-a-boo (and if there isn't a blanket or something handy to hide behind, he'll just put his head down and pop it back up - I melt!), looking in the mirror, being tossed up in the air, and having crazy faces or noises made at him. He continues to be very ticklish. He grabs everything in sight with a ferocious grip, and is a champ at sitting up, though he's still working on the balance at times. He also loves to rock back and forth like crazy when he's sitting and "jump" up and down if you hold him on his feet.
Thankful for in March: Fred Armisen's voice, NPR, anything with lime in it, really getting a handle on the housework & decorating in our home, and our local farmer's market.
That's all, folks. Thanks for reading.