Saturday, June 30, 2012

Let's Talk

I'm considering about making Let's Talk a new series on this site.  A bi-weekly addition to the blog that allows myself and all of you readers to contemplate and discuss more serious issues in our lives, rather than oohing and aahing over my awesome buffet [but you can do that, too, I promise].  I will not be letting these serious discussions take over the blog on a daily basis, but it could be nice to have outside input and differing viewpoints to compare your own with.  Would this be something that would interest all of you?  If so, please let me know, either via comment or email.  Danke!

This post has two parts, and covers a topic that has been on my mind a lot lately.  I would love to hear your input on both topics, which are related, and what you practice in your own life.

Part One: The Gossip
Gossip is a battle everyone [not only women] fights.  We are taught from a young age that it is wrong to slander others behind their back, it is wrong to talk about anyone else period, especially in a negative light or by revealing trusted secrets.  Yet we are seem to be unable to stop.  Whether you are religious, atheist, woman, man, young, middle aged, elderly, Chinese, African, or from Mars; gossip is a part of our daily lives, whether we participate or are victims.

In my honest, humble, and probably wrong opinion, I don't think that talking is always a bad thing.  Is it okay to spread rumors?  Should you repeat sworn secrets that a friend entrusted to you?  Should you belittle others to make yourself feel better, or as revenge?  Of course, no is the answer to all of those questions.  But what about the situations in which you need a second opinion, an outside source to offer a fresh point of view?  What if you have been offended by a friend, but take the matter to someone else to make sure you haven't blown it out of proportion?


Casual or unconstrained conversation or reports about other people, typically involving details that are not confirmed as being true.

In the technical definition, just discussing your issues with someone else is not considered gossip.  But because these discussions can typically be one sided and extremely biased when being reported, it appears to be a very fine line, and can often be misconstrued by other parties.  Is it still okay?

In all honesty, I do bring my troubles concerning someone to an outside source, mostly to make sure I am not being overdramatic.  But there are definitely time when I am feeling vicious, and make malicious comments about others out of anger or high emotion.  I'm not proud of this, and work on curbing my tongue daily.  I know how it feels to be talked about unkindly, and have heard quite a few outrageous rumors in the past.  I try to live by a standard I set for others, but sometimes what is right loses to what feels right at the time.  Do you battle the gossip nature?  How do you handle it?  What is your approach when a friend starts talking about rumors/unproven facts?

Part Two: Husband & Wife
In our house, I tell my husband everything.  Doesn't matter whether he wants to know or not, he's going to hear it [although in his defense, hearing and listening are two different things, so he may not know half of what I think he does...].  If I have a problem, have a story, hear something amazing, see something awkward, feel confused; el hubbo is the first person I want to run to, and usually do.

I read on Facebook the other day [it all comes back to Facebook, huh?] the status of a woman who is recently divorced, and complaining about an unnamed married lady who told her husband private information about the divorced woman.  There was actually a huge debate going on [which I followed with unabashed interest] on whether this is okay or wrong; are there things you shouldn't tell your significant other?  In the original woman's opinion, you shouldn't tell your husband anything.  Her opinion may have been a little tainted by her experience being married, though.  Other women, married/unmarried/young/old, all differed.  Some said that there should be no walls period in a relationship; others said that some things are best left unsaid; and the rest felt as though friendship and marriage should be completely separate.

To be clear, this is not a discussion on whether you should tell your partner everything about yourself, your history, what you had for lunch today, whether or not you should have children; that is all a matter of personal preference and pillow talk.  This is dealing with gossip.  Should you or should you not tell your partner everything you know about your friends?

While I tell hubby most things, I never try to incorporate a friend's personal activities/feelings into the conversation.  If someone lets me know that they have to see a marriage counselor for relationship issues, but specifically requests that I tell no one including my husband, then your secret is safe with me.  If you let me know that you're planning on buying a puppy, I might just tell him.  Mostly because I like dogs, and get excited when someone else buys one.  And in relation to part one, I often tell him my problems or issues with others so he can help sort out what is legitimate, and what I'm taking too far.  If you haven't guessed, I'm quite hot headed, and can boil over at the tiniest thing.  Sorry, friends.

I probably do tell my husband too much about my friends, and definitely more than he would like to hear, but I also try my hardest to respect their unspoken wish if it is something they would not like to be known.  How does your relationship work with your partner?  Am I wrong in my habits?  Do you think gossip can be detrimental to a marriage [in the respect of bringing outside gossip into the home.  Talking about your personal life to friends is a conversation for another day].  

Friday, June 29, 2012

Friday's Letters

Dear Friday.  You look absolutely gorgeous and sunny today.  However, Wednesday and Thursday both tricked me and let me get caught outside in surprise thunderstorms, so please don't be mad when I don't trust your appearance.  Dear Husband.  I was reprimanded for not writing a letter to you last week by your friend at work.  I'm not really sure how to feel about that.  I love you.  Dear Husband's friend.  Is that better?  Dear Pups.  The walk with all four of you the other day was extremely interesting, and oh so exhausting.  You guys are definitely a hand full.  Dear Readers.  You guys rock.  Dear US.  I miss you.  Dear Husband.  Less than two months left...we can do it.  Dear Alyssa.  I'm so beyond psyched you'll be here in August.  Germany will never be the same when we get through with it.  Dear Pups.  Your cuddles are the best, but please stop sneaking up onto the bed in the middle of the night.  The fact that 1) I can't move is kind of scary, and 2) I start sweating my ass off is uncomfortable.  We can cuddle lots during the day, just let me do my own thing at night.  Oh, all don't know what that means and have no concept of not being on top of your human counterparts.  My bad.  Dear coffee in the picture above.  You are my favorite treat every morning.  I do love you so.


Thursday, June 28, 2012

Girl Behind the Blog - A Little More

I'm a little late, but here it is nonetheless.  I wanted to do it yesterday, but didn't feel like changing out of pajamas or washing my hair... Please excuse the fidgeting and awkward faces; I was so nervous, I couldn't sit still!!!


Sponsor Tribute, Part 2

J is a Texas gal with a zest for life, and a hoot to follow on Twitter.  Seriously, she cracks me up.  Her larger than life Texas attitude creates the most personable and reader friendly blog out there, making you feel as if you've known her your whole life.  What more can I say?  J is pretty swell.

Her Texas Tuesday posts give some insight into what it's like to be a Southern lady
I love her resolution to start living in the moment
She wrote a post about things she's afraid to tell her readers.  I've been trying to gather up the courage to do a similar one, but don't have J's bravery


Sarah is a British sponsor that helps inspire organization, hard work, and inspires readers to constantly strive to meet their goals.  Not only all that; she has an amazing Etsy site full of her original artwork!  Even better, she often gives her artwork away for free to her readers.  Sarah is one cool cat, and a much needed break from a world full of recipe sharing bloggers.

One of the best ways to get to know her is by reading an introductory post
Her artwork was selected to be displayed in an art gallery
A cute little picture frame revamp she created


Kassie is a fellow ginger [we soul suckers have to stick together!], but definitely has flair where I don't. Stylish, put together, and has her head on straight; she's a pretty cool chick.  She has some awesome pictures on her blog, and wonderful outfit posts that help inspire me to be a tad more creative with my wardrobe.

This Awkward & Awesome Thursday had me giggling
Kassie also participated in the things I'm afraid to tell you trend
Any girl who likes tattoos is definitely a friend of mine


Lissa is yet another fashionista that makes me feel a tad underdressed.  [side note: why do I surround myself with these fabulous looking women?!]  She also has some awesome vlogs, giveaways, and just every day conversation topics that can lift you up and make you feel not so alone.  Best part is, even though she has close to 500 followers, she still supports the tiny blogs like mine.

Her pledge to not purchase clothes for ONE WHOLE YEAR kind of left me speechless
Seriously, her notes to her dad on Father's Day made me tear up a little
Her secrets aren't your typical ones, and had me laugh out loud-ing


Katelyn is another ginger lady, and I love reading her everyday stories.  Since her's is a lifestyle blog, it hosts just random tidbits about her everyday happenings.  Because she's a college girl in Wisconsin, and a red head, and has ghost-like skin, I feel as though I relate to Katelyn pretty well.

I love her answers to these questions, but mostly the picture just cracks me up
Her video in this post makes me miss home so badly!
Sometimes, what we expect and what actually happens are two completely different things.


There you have it!  All of the wonderful sponsors of Be Freckled.  Are you interested in sponsoring Be Freckled and receiving your own highlight on the blog?  Visit this page for information.  Sponsoring is FREE, and I would love to have you!

Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Sponsors Tribute, Part 1

Nothing at all like the Hunger Games tribute, so please don't think I expect my sponsors to compete to the death...

I'm so honored to have some wonderful ladies behind Be Freckled who lend their support and praise to the blog.  Here they are, in no particular order, along with some of my favorite posts they've written in the past.  Part 2 will include the the remainder and will be posted tomorrow.  [Click the photos for links to their webpages]


LWLH is an amazing lady that tells it how it is, and allows her readers insight into her everyday life with Big Man and her pup, Mia.  Her enthusiasm, no-nonsense attitude, and amazing photography keep me looking forward to every new post!  Take a look at some of her talent:

Here she captures some small summer moments in a Loves of Life photo challenge
The awesome proposal story of when she and Big Man got engaged!
On her 1000th post, she showed off some amazing ferris wheel photos.  Swoon!


Two Dogs, A Cat, & a DIY Life is run by the cutest couple and their mini animal family.  After starting their blog to record their memories upon getting married, it has grown to include vegan recipes, tips for bloggers, tips for those moving, and tons and tons of gorgeous gorgeous photographs.  

I love the story of how they put their mattress on the balcony in Mexico to enjoy the peace of the beach.
Their Wordless Wednesday photographs are always killer
Sometimes you just have to sit back and laugh at the stupid things your pets do


Patricia is a sassy red head that has taken the lemons life has given her, and thrown them at people.  Who needs lemonade?!  Her talented writing skills, painting talents, and scathing sense of humor all keep me well entertained.  Plus, she's about as real as it gets; no "perfect life" facade for her.

Her husband recently told their love story in his own words
Thankfully she likes to share her quirky sense of humor with her readers
Her life growing up is heart-breaking, but she had the courage to bare it all


Danielle hosts a blog with fashion and beauty tips [which if you know me at all, I desperately need].  Despite an undiagnosed illness that effects her everyday life, she is continuously upbeat and motivated to accomplish her dreams.  Between basic beauty tips, she also does product reviews to help you make the best purchasing decisions.  PLUS she has tons of giveaways!!!

This short post gives inspiration to those feeling down
That time her dog lied had me cracking up!
She talks about looking for love, and the traits she searches for in a man


Jennifer talks about her every day life with a very straight forward attitude, and manages to juggle so much, it kind of exhausts me to think about it!  Between school, family, work and other obligations, I'm not sure how she manages to keep up with a blog, but I'm sure glad she does.

Her Friday's Letters are awesome and sometimes hilarious.  Stupid carpet shampooer!
I absolutely love this post about her cat, and what she decided to name her
The way she describes her family makes me giggle, but it's so amazing how they've opened their home


Are you interested in sponsoring Be Freckled and receiving your own highlight on the blog?  Visit this page for information.  Sponsoring is FREE, and I would love to have you!

Monday, June 25, 2012

Thrift Store Decor

As you all know, I'm pretty addicted to thrift store shopping.  I even made sure to do some while in the US, and shipped it home to myself to display in some pretty perfect areas.  Here's a few things I found while in Minnesota and South Carolina...

I love thrifted jewelry.  It's fascinating to think of the history behind each unique piece.
Thrifted, $8

Frame has a matching sister, but it needs to be glued back together since it didn't make the trip in one piece.
Marshall's, $12

Mom & I found this in a thrift store, and created an elaborate story of our long lost cousin.  I can't quite remember the details, but I do know his name is Boy.
Thrifted, $3

This is Boy's barn.  Well, it is in my mind anyway.
Thrifted, $1

Wall of frames grows steadily larger.  Yes, the flower picture is not perfectly center.  Yes it drives me crazy.
Entire collection [including those not seen in photo] thrifted, around $20 total

These figurines made the perfect addition to my buffet.
Thrifted, $6 total

And as promised, a view of how my $30 buffet now fits into the dining room.  Eventually, a large ornate mirror will replace the poster, and will be framed by photos I've taken.  No, I do not have the patience or desire to create the image of the most perfectly put together home ever, so I don't bother shutting doors and moving fans or putting things away.

With the exception of the bookcases and books [and bottle of wine] everything in photo was thrifted or purchased used, including dining table, chairs, wine glasses, fan, etc.

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Sunday Social

So normally, I don't post more than once a day.  But lucky for you all, I'm incredibly bored and antsy and have nothing to do; so I am going to participate in Sunday Social.  Thanks for the idea, Becca!  Annnndddd, here we go.

1. What is your all-time favorite song?
Honestly, is that even possible?  There are so many songs in the's hard to narrow it down to 100, much less one.  But here are a couple never failing favorites that I turn to.

Foo Fighters: The Pretender, and I dare you to try and NOT rock out to this song.

Joshua Radin: Someone Else's Life...soothing...

Family Force 5: Earthquake...who says Christian music has to be dull?!

Wolfmother: Woman...classic rock, love of my life.

Okay, that's more than a couple.  Sorry.

2. Who is your favorite singer/band?

Again, why do I have to narrow it down?!  A few of my favorites include: Joshua Radin, Iron & Wine, Foo Foo Fighters, Family Force 5, All-American Rejects, Eagles of Death Metal, Jack Johnson, The Mars Volta, Shinedown, Bright Eyes, and The Stanley Brothers.

So.  Rock, Bluegrass, and Indie.  Is that a random collection?

3.  What is your theme song or song that best describes your life?

Theme song would be that of Pipi Longstocking.  Come on.  We could be twins, right?

4.  What songs put you in a good mood?

Almost any music can do that, but one that will for sure turn my frown upside down is LMFAO's Sexy and I Know It.  

5.  What is your favorite road trip music?

Anything you can sing along to.  I have a playlist called "Singablyable" that is automatically played on long includes all Britney Spears' top hits, Lady Gaga, Fall Out boy, all bands mentioned above, and more.  Anything I can just sing to.

6.  What song are you embarrassed to admit you love?  

The Darkness: I Believe in a Thing Called Love.  It's horribly amazing.  And seriously, please watch the video?  You'll die, it's so funny.

There you have it!  A quick glance into the musical mind of this gal!  Hope you all had a great weekend, can't wait to hear about them :)

Sunday Social

Bookish Sundays: Good Omens

Title: Good Omens: The Nice and Accurate Prophesies of Agnes Nutter, Witch

Author: Terry Pratchett & Neil Gaiman

Category: Fiction, Humor, Fantasy

Synopsis [c/o Barnes & Noble]:  "According to The Nice and Accurate Prophecies of Agnes NutterWitch (the world's only completely accurate book of prophecies, written in 1655, before she exploded), the world will end on a Saturday. Next Saturday, in fact. Just before dinner.
So the armies of Good and Evil are amassing, Atlantis is rising, frogs are falling, tempers are flaring. Everything appears to be going according to Divine Plan. Except a somewhat fussy angel and a fast-living demon—both of whom have lived amongst Earth's mortals since The Beginning and have grown rather fond of the lifestyle—are not actually looking forward to the coming Rapture.
And someone seems to have misplaced the Antichrist . . ."
c/o Barnes & Noble
Review: Warning.  This book is hysterical.  Seriously.  I think I peed my pants the first time I read it.  However, if you are unable to take jokes about religious dealings, specifically Christianity, then probably not the best book for you.  In no way shape or form is it anti-religoun or pro-religion.  It's just funny.

Anyway.  From the beginning, the reader is introduced to a  motley cast of characters.  As the novel opens in the Garden of Eden, we see what actually happens when Adam & Eve are cast out, and the angel & demon behind the action.  Fast forward to the twentieth century; God has deemed it time for the end of the world, which therefore necessitates the Antichrist.  But, God's plan is not working out so well.  Between the bumblings of various angels and demons, the steadfast denial of human beings, and the nice and accurate prophesies of Agnes Nutter, dooms day may be delayed.

If you decide to pick this up, be prepared for a few good laughs.  There is a quirky style of writing, quirky conversations, and just plain old ridiculous characters.  Hope you enjoy!

Saturday, June 23, 2012

Gone to the Dogs

I currently have two extra canines hanging out at my house, and will be hosting them for the next couple of weeks.  These girlies are sweethearts, and I'm so happy their parents trust me to keep them safe while on vacation.

Ninja you know.
This is Rita. 
Have you ever noticed how Sass' eyes look in different directions?  Very confusing.  JUST LOOK AT ME, SASS!
And this is Tetris.  
They're seriously the best of friends.  And this kind of reminds me of a model shoot.
An idea of what my dogs do whenever we go on a walk.

And here is an idea of what all four dogs are like together.  Excuse a) the house, b) the couch, c) this was before I rearranged and decorated, so please don't judge me.

Friday, June 22, 2012

Friday's Letters.

Dear Friday.  I'm amazed that you're coming around more and more quickly.  This deployment might just start to fly by.  Dear Birthday.  You were tons of fun, even if it was celebrated by myself.  Seeing the dogs in those party hats definitely made the hassle worth it!  Dear Alyssa.  Please buy your plane ticket soon!  I'm dying to start planning our adventures for when you visit.  Dear Tetras & Rita.  I love you two dearly, and know that Ninja & Sass are stoked to have their two besties stay for two weeks.  But, please remember that four dogs vs. one human is a little overwhelming.  You four need to be on your best behavior.  Dear Sass.  That means you.  Dear pups.  I know you thought it was a game yesterday, but that running back to the house after our walk was legit.  The thunderstorm came up on us a lot quicker than I thought it would.  Dear German lace cafe curtains.  Seriously, what is the point?  I can see straight through you into the house.  Why doesn't Germany sell solid fabric cafe curtains?  Dear Germany.  Why don't you sell solid fabric cafe curtains?!  Dear sewing machine.  We may have a project on our hands in the near future.


Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Laters, Baby.

The title drew you in.  You know exactly what it's from, and you're hoping this is another post that will glorify and memorialize the series that you've been gushing about for weeks.  I hate to burst your bubble, but this is nothing like that.

If you can't tell, I can't stand these books.  But I'm not talking about that, either.  I am trying [with difficulty] to put my absolute distaste and disgust for these novels aside to talk about something completely different, yet related.  The readers' reaction.

Fifty Shades of Grey and its sister novels were released to the public with little hype, but promoted and cherished once reviewed on television.  A sudden rush to gain access to the pages of the series now has Fifty Shades obsessed fans leading forays into new merchandise, new website, book club topics, and has even started to take over more popular sites such as Facebook, Pinterest, and others.  I get it.  This is a new craze, much like The Hunger Games, where every new piece of jewelry, poster, picture, shirt, and more is wanted and coveted by the fan club of readers.  Fifty is racy, sexy, ..... racy, sexy, ...... and terribly horribly written pieces of shit.

Sorry.  I lapsed.

While such tidal waves of fans are to be expected when anything new and shiny is released [be it in the book world or any other world], I just don't understand some reactions to the novels.  Recently, I read a comment on Facebook.

"I CAN'T PUT IT DOWNNNN.  I want a man like grey, minus the you know what.  Lmao the lovin seems so much better in the books then in real life LMAO."

Obviously the commentator is kept anonymous, not only because I am getting ready to tear her to shreds, but also because I don't know her.  It was a random comment caught on a friend's status.  My first instinct is to take this girl by the neck and shake her repeatedly until my point is understood.  How in the world can you compare a fictional, made up love story with real life?  How can one even seem a substitute for reality?  

Of course the "lovin" in the books seems better.  You obviously don't know true love, dearie.  Because if you did, you would realize that love isn't made up of chains and whips and domination.  It is a mutual feeling between two people, one of respect and adoration.  Or maybe you're drawn to it because of the passion; well, honey, passion doesn't last forever for anyone, and that can be said for Grey and his sex pet.  And please don't take this to mean that marriage/true love is dried up boring sit on the couch life; it's just evolved into something else, something more adequate, something much more meaningful than what you're reading in the books.

More women than we realize are effected by these stereotypes in romance novels, so much so that it causes havoc in their daily lives. 

" There are women, who unconsciously build expectations of the kind of love they’re looking for and end up unhappy in their real relationships because of the pressure they put on themselves and their partners to have that perfect romance. " -Anuradha Anupkumar

While there are plenty of women who read novels and can separate fact from fiction, and while it still leaves a bad taste in my mouth when thinking that even smart women have been caught up in this web of erotica, I feel even worse for those who are suddenly desperate to find the man that only exists in books.

There is something wrong with the entire picture.  I do get women's need to feel loved, to take that bad boy and turn him into something gentle, and I understand the appeal of romance novels since they give you a taste of this action.  But why torture yourself?  Do you not realize that life is not a book?  There are no messed up, BDSM-loving, rich, handsome, intelligent, abuse, scarred, generally and completely fucked up boys out there to whisk you off your feet and recreate Fifty Shades for you.  And there is no man in his right mind that will take what you've read in a book and interpret it in the bedroom.  Be completely honest, now; are you even into all the hardcore shit you just read, or are you following a trend?  Don't lie.  Even worse is the possibility that young women who have never known true love, who are not married, are suddenly influenced by this macabre example of "love" [read: obsession] and will now be unable to correctly search for the man that is right for them, and will instead be looking for the Christian Grey of reality that will ruin their lives.

A bit overboard?  Sorry.  Got carried away.

Basic point of this story: my complete and utter lack of understanding when smart, capable women start complaining that real life should be more like a book.  It hurts my heart that their significant others are no longer adequate enough for their love just because some Twilight fan decided to write about "kinky fuckery."  

I'm done ranting.  Thoughts?  Opinions?  Eye opening revelations for me to help me see the light?  

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

A Whole New Me

Whadda ya think?  Like the new blog design?!  I, personally, am absolutely in love.  I suppose you've noticed the color trend [I can't help it, I just LOVE teal], but this one is so neat, fresh, and unique!!!  Here's the before picture:

Okay, so I had to take it on my iPad.  I didn't realize I never took a screen shot until after I was in bed.  You aren't allowed to judge me on all the bookmarks at the top of the browser, either...

Much much much better now, right?  Therefore, I owe a huge gigantic most heartfelt thank you EVER to Little Woman, Little Home for the best blog design I've ever had.  Easy peasy on my end, wonderful to work with, and definitely someone I will be going back to for future designs.  Danke schön, LWLH, for being so awesome!!!

Monday, June 18, 2012

It's My Birthday!

Today, I am officially 24 years old.  Not sure how I feel about that; seems kind of insignificant.  I haven't decided if I think my maturity level is on par with my age, either.  Some days, definitely not.  Some days, I feel older.  Today; definitely the former.  I'm a kid when it comes to celebrating my birthday.

Have you ever seen more miserable looking dogs?  But I forced them.  It's my birthday, you see.

Excuse the drool...I was keeping them in place with treat temptations.

She hated this hat.  But, it's my birthday, so she had to wear it.

Ice cream, wine, and Bailey's.  Yes, this is my dinner.  Don't judge me; it's my birthday.  
P.s., the Bailey's was a gift from a lovely friend.  I'm not allowed to drink it except on holidays, and we all agree that today is very much a holiday.

I swear the candle was lit, it's just not showing up in the picture.  And so what if my bowl of ice cream could possible equal the entire gallon that I's my birthday.

Hope you all had a great weekend!!!!

edited to include this photo by mi padre:

This is the original birthday celebration.  A family tradition of celebrating both my sister and mine's birthdays [since they're so close together].  Japanese steakhouse!!!  Notice the awkward faces in the bottom left?  And how 'bout those masks they made us wear when they sang to us?!

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Bookish Sundays: Gone with the Wind

Title: Gone with the Wind

Author: Margaret Mitchell

Category: Fiction, Historical

Synopsis: "If the novel has a theme it is that of survival. What makes some people able to come through catastrophes and others, apparently just as able, strong and brave, go under? It happens in every upheaval. Some people survive; others don't. What qualities are in those who fight their way through triumphantly that are lacking in those who go under...? I only know that the survivors used to call that quality 'gumption.' So I wrote about the people who had gumption and the people who didn't." 
-- Margaret Mitchell, 1936

c/o Barnes & Noble
I read Gone with the Wind for the first time in the sixth grade.  I don't remember why I had to conquer such an imposing novel [it's well over a thousand pages of awesomeness], but I did.  I reread it again in high school, so this past week marked it thrice read.  Third times a charm, right?  I think I actually comprehended it on this round.

I think to some, Gone with the Wind is a romance novel, or at least a novel with romance in it.  In all actuality, there is none.  This is a story of a girl turned woman, forced by the Civil War to endure hardships and struggles she had never imagined.  The genteel South she was raised in falls to ruin around her, allowing instead for an influx of Yankee socialites.  The woman [Scarlett, if you could't guess], overcomes all obstacles, regains her money, and tries to make her way back up the social ladder.  This is a very gross overview of the novel, but Scarlett's struggles and achievements were never what interested me.  *Side note: if you read/have read the novel, how do you think Scarlett fits in with Joyness Sparkles' definition of a feminist wife?*

My main interest in the novel was stark differences between how Mitchell portrays slavery and the history lessons in school.  I might be getting myself into a lot of hot water, so let me start this with a disclaimer: I absolutely do not support slavery, the idea of enslaving another person for one's bidding, be it a sex slave, a farming slave, a house slave, etc.  None of it sits well with me.  But, that being said; growing up, we were taught that there were absolutely no slaves ever that wanted to be one.  All of them caused upheavals, every single one of them wanted to run away.  But in Mitchell's portrayal, they loved their family.  Slaves were an extension of the white plantation owner, a fatherly figure to their brain washed minds.  Even when the Union freed all slaves, the majority [with the exception of field hands] stayed with their white families to not only take care of them, but to be taken care of.  There was a symbiotic relationship; white man needed slaves to help culture his farm, slaves needed white man for security.  

Of course, for every ten decent slave owners, there was the bad apple.  The ones that forced their slaves  through pain and misery, who desired only the output of their labor for riches and glory.  I would never say all of the stories aren't true.  I understand that life was hell for the majority of slaves, and I am extremely glad that such a dark point in our history was fought against, and has passed.  But I also understand that there are two sides to every story; for each horror, there was a blessing.  And I kind of resent the public school system for their very one-sided and biased historical overview of the Civil War era.  Ideas?  Comments?  Condemnations?  

Friday, June 15, 2012

Friday's Letters

Cissy, the grandfather [aka Waltwee, or Walter Wee Winsky], and myself.

Dear Friday.  Hello.  Dear USA.  I miss you so so so much.  Dear Family.  I miss you dearly as well.  If I had it my way, I'd be moving home for the summer, and bringing the pups with me!  Dear LWLH & J.  I seriously can't wait until next May.  I really hope it works out!  BTW, meant to tell you all that I will also be visiting South Carolina, either before or after California, if that works better for you two.  Dear Readers.  Thank you all!  There are tons of new followers on my list, and I appreciate your support more than you know.  I hope I can live up to your expectations!  Dear Husband.  I miss you so much right now.  The house is empty, quiet, and kind of scary.  Can't wait to have you home in August!  Dear Alyssa.  I don't know if you ever read this blog, but just want to let you know that I'm so happy you'll be coming out in August.  I need my best friend!  Dear Pups.  It was wonderful having you cuddle up to me the past two nights, and even more wonderful to watch you expend your energy on our daily walks.  I love you guys.  Dear World.  I wish you would smush your continents a little closer together so it would be easier for me to travel home.


Thursday, June 14, 2012

2.5 weeks later

The title reminds me of that movie 28 Weeks Later, which was no where near as good as its predecessor 28 Days Later.  Have you seen it?  A zombie apocalypse [or something similar to it, at least].  The main star of the film, Cillian Murphy, is one of my favorite actors.  He was stunning as the Scarecrow in Batman Begins, but my favorite role is Jackson Rippner in Red Eye.  Admittedly not a great movie, but I did like his part in it.  Anyway.  None of this has anything to do with the point of this blog.

I left for the States 2.5 weeks ago, and wasn't really thinking much about getting back home.  But, here I am, and I'm amazed at how much things have changed it just the couple weeks I've been gone.

This was taken in a field near the house, maybe a month ago.  We walk to the field every day so the dogs can run and play, then head back up the path to go home.  When I left, the grass/weeds were only as high as my waist or there are parts that are easily as tall as I am, and it all completely covers the dogs.  They used to kind of jump over everything when they chased each other through, but now, I have to watch the tops of the stalks in order to figure out where they are.  However, every once in a while, Ninja [who can easily jump at least 8 feet] will come bounding over the top of the grass, funny little ears flapping in the wind like wings.  It cracks me up.

The path we follow is equally as grown over.  Hard to navigate at times, I feel as though I should carry an old sword to chop through the undergrowth.  In all honesty, I've contemplated carrying a weed whacker through to help the worst parts back, but it seems like a lot of work...I don't like work.  I can still spot some familiar landmarks, such as my bench, a couple oddly placed clearings, and the most sinister looking gates I've ever seen.  Not this gate; another set that is mysterious and forbidding and completely creeps me out.  Kind of wish the forest would swallow it up so I wouldn't have to see it so often.

The dogs were ecstatic to see me, wiggling their little butts so much I thought they would fall off.  Ninja even kept his chin on my shoulder the entire drive home, licking my cheek whenever I turned my face.  When we got home, there was a lot of unloading/unpacking/resetting up their stuff, but as soon as I sat down, they were both instantly right beside me.  I know they thoroughly enjoyed spending time with their best puppy friends for so long, but it's also nice to feel so loved and welcome.  Dogs are pretty good at that, ya?

The house was exactly the same.  Every single thing right where I left it, windows shut, yard overgrown, rooms cold and lifeless.  That's when it hit me; I'm home.  I have left behind the vacation world of always having other people around, always having something to do, things to see.  Now I am back in my own house, which is quiet and lonely and empty, waiting for my husband to come home and breath some life into it.  I wish so badly I could go back to my family; of all the things that had to stay the same until 2.5 weeks later, it had to be the loneliness.

It's actually a little easier today.  It helped to sleep in my own bed with the pups cuddled up next to me. All the windows and doors are open, which means I'll have to chase out the bugs later on, but it's perfect for right now.  The thunderstorms that haunted us yesterday kept us inside in the dark, which made everything a tad worse.  And I only have to think "2 more months" to help cheer me up.  I'm over halfway to the hubby coming back; I can do this.  Although, I'll admit, I put extra tags on the dogs' collars just so they make more noise when they move about.