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I remember the first time I ever heard my grandfather use a racial slur. We were all sitting around the picnic table and he was upset about his new neighbors who played their music too loud and greeted him with a friendly “hola” instead of speaking “american” as he called it. I was devastated. Here was this man who kept a package of novelty sunglasses in his kitchen drawer so his little movie star never had to go shade-less. Who sang silly songs and convinced me that if I pulled my teeth in just the right way, I would be able to take them out, just like him. That someone I loved so much, could say something that horrible, so carelessly? It not only hurt my heart, it tainted so many of my memories. I have the same feeling every time I look at a sketch by Courtney Brims.
The images are beautiful, well drawn with exquisite detail, but they’re also dark and a little off putting. Like watching a favorite movie or reading a beloved novel, and suddenly realizing the familiar words are much deeper than their natural shape and cadence would suggest. Instead of black and white, they twist together forming smokey shades of gray that tell a far more sinister tale.
Knowlege and understanding always come with a price, and sometimes it seems sad and unfair that we can’t unlearn something that we never wanted to know in the first place. Sadder yet that not only does it color what you do know, it also makes you wonder what else you’ve missed.
Images from here.
Whew, what a weekend! My in-laws came down from North Carolina this past weekend. My youngest brother-in-law, Sam, just finished his freshman year of college and he is going to spend the next few weeks working with Andy and Matt (my oldest brother-in-law). It was great to have a full house, the cats enjoyed all the extra lap space, we watched movies, did a little shopping and had our 4th of July cookout a few days early. Sadly, the parents-in-laws are on their way back up north and the rest of us are office bound. Except for Andy, he has the week off so he is running errands and straightening the house so he can enjoy the rest of his time off later on.
Since we were expecting a house full of visitors, Andy and I spent Friday night and Saturday morning in a cleaning frenzy. After handling the arsenal of cleaning fluids required for mopping, scrubbing and polishing, both of our hands are a little worse for the wear. So I decided to do a little research into DIY cleaning products. This is what I’ve come up with so far.
All Purpose Cleaner from Anonymous Was a Woman
Dish Soap by Tried & True
Liquid Hand Soap from The Farmer’s Nest
Laundry Detergent from Yellow Brick Home
Obviously these are not “all natural”, but at least this way I know exactly what and how much of something I am exposing my hands to. Added bonus, the cost vs. volume on these products is staggering, you’ll be saving yourself some serious money. And with most of us being on a budget, we can always use a few extra pennies.
The need to see my Christmas pictures finally surpassed my dislike of the photo transfer/editing process. I may have only edited the ones I wanted to use for the blog, but still, baby steps. It was a great day, a little rocky to begin with (I overslept), but all in all a really wonderful day. It was the first Christmas in quite a while that my mother, brother, father and I were all able to be in the same place at the same time. There was good food, lots of laughing, my mom exchanged her Santa hat for the wreath I made her, and Andy got to wear her hat while being the gift elf.
We are still recovering from the festivities. I have been baking and trying to come up with creative solutions for the left over snack foods and ingredients. There may be a breakfast casserole in the near future, but I haven’t really decided yet. We will be putting away the decorations this weekend, mostly because Amelia has taken to pulling the bells off the tree and she climbed into the tree last night and brought it crashing down on the other cats. Funny now, but I was a little miffed yesterday.
So I am finally getting through some of the photos on my camera. After the first round I was delighted to find that my bridesmaids had snapped some shots of my batchlorette party. Don’t get too excited, the evening consisted of good food, champagne, henna and great friends, not so crazy, but perfect in my eyes. Oh, and amazing gift baskets provided by the leading ladies, which unfortunately I didn’t get a picture of.
From the top: Me trying to convey to the henna artist what I wanted painted on my feet and legs. My college roommate and bridesmaid, Rebecca showcasing what was perhaps my favorite bottle of champagne. Pretty bottles and bubbles, need I say more? My cousin and fellow beach week pirate princess Mollie. My fellow fashion designer diva and bridesmaid Silk. And last, but certainly not least, the person who has been my friend since kindergarten, my maid of honor, Stefanie. These girls have been some of my closest friends I’ve had over the years. And there were still a few more lovely laides who were with us at least in spirit even though they couldn’t make it in person.
It was the perfect night of advice, stories and reminiscing to usher me into this new stage of my life. And the amazing henna artist Ayesha was an unexpectedly wonderful personality that made the party that much more lively.