It’s alive!!

Don’t ask me what spirit moved me, but my Web site is ALIVE!!

Over the last couple of days I’ve been working on developing shannontrenton.com into the central hub of all of my thoughts and things and goings-on. I still have a lot of work to do, but to ease the transition I’ve already exported this lovely blog over there. So look for me where my name flashes on the screen, for new content and old fan favorites. (Maybe I’ll get some fans this way, who knows?)

Seriously, go look – constructive feedback is appreciated!

Shannon

Moving in…

Well, we’re finally here.

Not totally, of course – in the next 12 days before our lease at the apartment is up we still need to drive back down, rescue the few remaining items (lights come in handy), drop a room’s worth of items at Goodwill, and clean the apartment as if we were never there. But that’s for next week.

We had an awesome team to help us with our move. I use “us” lightly; for this round I was “girl in the green shirt” (because the guy who couldn’t remember my name was afraid to call me “pregnant chick” – I guess he’s made an error in that department before!), director of traffic and co-warmer of soups for consumption. To compensate for my own feelings of uselessness during the actual move, I’ve already unpacked more than a dozen boxes and found homes for them – after a nap, of course. Moving (even when someone else is doing the heavy lifting) is hard work.

I’ve been to this house a number of times since the night we got the keys, but having our own belongings in it finally makes it feel like home. The rooms no longer echo, and I’m getting used to the random creaks in the hardwood floor that Brian will undoubtedly try to tackle sometime this spring. I’m comforted by the sight of my own glasses in the china cabinet, the sound of my cats coming up and down the stairs…

Oh, the cats. We brought them over Friday night so they could have some time to get used to their new house. Instead, they cowered in the kitchen until we carried them into the one bedroom where they’d feel most safe, and closed them in for the better part of two days. When we let them out yesterday morning they went into hiding again, and I learned once again that cats are at the bottom of the “listen to Mommy” totem pole. When I finally found Tej, his expression told me “I’ve heard you yelling for the last half hour; I just don’t care.”

I love my cats.

There will be scores of new reflections as we get totally settled, but for the moment I have more boxes to pack – and, after a very long hiatus, groceries to buy!

Home, sweet home.

Spell

Marie Digby, “Spell” (2008)

Spotlight shining brightly on my face
I can’t see a thing and yet I feel you looking my way
Empty stage, with nothing but this girl
Who’s singing this simple melody
And wearing her heart on her sleeve
And right now
I have you
For a moment I can tell I’ve got you
‘Cause your lips don’t move, and something is happening
‘Cause your eyes tell me the truth
I’ve put a spell over you

Beauty emanates from every word that you say
You capture the deepest thoughts in the purest
And simplest of ways
But you see
I’m not that graceful, like you
Nor am I as eloquent
But just a simple melody can change the way that you see me
And right now
I have you
For a moment I can tell I’ve got you
‘Cause your lips don’t move, and something is happening
‘Cause your eyes tell me the truth
I’ve put a spell over you

And all my life I stumble, but up here I am
Just perfect
Perfect as I’ll ever be…

Oh, I have you
For a moment I can tell I’ve got you
‘Cause your lips don’t move, and something is happening
‘Cause your eyes tell me the truth
I’ve put a spell over you…

This is a great resource if, like us, you’re trying to cook healthier without sacrificing flavor and variety.

L'artichaut

One of the lingering misconceptions about vegetarian food is that it is boring.

This wide-spread belief stems from the unappetizing stodge that some hippies cooked in the 70s. The veggie food bad rap is fortunately disappearing and we are living an exciting vegetarian revolution with delicious recipes published on the web every day.

Now that I mostly cook vegetarian, I realize how it is far more creative than the bog standard meat-two-vegs-one-carb dish. It does require more effort but it’s more satisfying in many ways.

Here are a few tricks that I use to keep my vegetarian food interesting and tasty:

1. A few drops of green gold.

Sprinkle a dash of “the good olive oil” before serving; it brings the flavours together. This is a trick I learned from the Spanish. You can have normal quality olive oil for everyday cooking but have a bottle of the good…

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Revenge: Season Finale recap, looking ahead to Season 2

Well Revenge fans…this time, the season is really over. It seems hard to believe, after all of the hiatuses we were forced to endure (for shame, ABC) to get our fix of Emily and her quest for vengeance. And who could blame us? Last night’s season finale was full of shocks and surprises, with more than enough cliffhangers to leave us all breathless from the suspense. After the jump, I’ll go over some key points in the finale and discuss my predictions for Season 2.
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This is pretty much exactly what I needed to see this morning.

The Greenery

Does anyone truly love to work?

I mean, the actual act of working, not the side-effects: satisfaction, sense of purpose, feelings of accomplishment. I mean, let’s be honest: wouldn’t you rather be having a glass of wine with friends in a nice, sunny garden instead of surveilling a parking garage, polishing your story draft, or pulling weeds? I know I would. But without the work hours, the wine hours feel a bit hollow and unearned. I mean, what to talk about between sips of wine, if not the day’s accomplishments? Besides which, if you don’t pull the weeds, the sunny garden tends to look a bit…weedy.

Maybe you’re different. Perhaps you’re actually one of those extremely driven souls who thrive on long days at the office, negotiating, litigating, or typing your heart out until moonglitter streams into the windows. If so, I commend you. But I’m also slightly wary…

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Say what you need to say.

#iwishihadsaid…

The Washington Post ran a slideshow about things people wish they had said when they had the chance, from Jackie Hooper’s “The Things You Would Have Said” and Twitter responses to their prompt. Many thanks to Connie Schultz for posting it on Facebook, because now I’m sitting here thinking of all the things I should have said.

From what I’ve read (mostly), the idea is generally positive; however, one person commented that they would say the bad things that they’ve bitten their tongue over for years, and I think that’s wise as well. The world and our experiences in it aren’t all good, and the most important thing is to be true to oneself.

So, in no particular order…

-You really are funny. Even when I’m angry it takes all the energy I have to keep a straight face and remember that I’m supposed to be mad. I need to work on that (laughing, not being mad).

-I should have stopped talking to you the first time I thought, “glad I’m on your good side…” Hopefully one day you realize that of all the conflicts you’ve had with friends and ex-friends, you are the common denominator.

-I’m sorry for not standing up for you the way I should have. You were my friend, and when I had the chance to be yours I didn’t take it. I hope you grew up happy.

-Shut. Up.

-Thanks for showing me who you really are. I only wish you would have done it sooner, so I could have avoided all the drama.

-You’re going to be an amazing mother, and I hope that your kidlet turns out as freaky and awesome as you’ve always been. (And that I can say this to your face soon!)

-I’m glad you thought I was clever and spirited rather than disrespectful. Because I’m not when you’re concerned – I respect you an incredible amount. You’re the reason I took the path I did and the only reason I would consider going back to it.

There’s so much more I could say, to so many more people, but I think that’s enough for now. What should you have said?

 

Some habits are hard to break…

So. Habits. The other day I talked about how different they are from resolutions and how much better they are than resolutions…but the one important similarity is the ohmigod are they hard to change!

Two days ago I wrote that I wanted to create a habit of daily writing. One of my other intended habits for the year is to minimize my negative responses to the world around me – less rushing to get angry and stressed, more pausing and processing before I react. In a choreographed and altogether unfunny response, the world has decided to create a maze of negative situations through which I have to navigate, just to see what I’ll do.

I’m trying, but it’s so easy to be negative! It isn’t that I’m yelling and screaming, or biting off anyone’s head (except Brian, sorry honey!); it’s the sweet and evil temptation to make fun of others, to gripe excessively, to just indulge the negative feelings in my head even if I’m not outwardly expressing all of them. While some of those feelings are legitimate, however, as I dwell on them they grow into individual mind monsters that threaten to overtake any semblance of positive thought I can muster.

Somehow, I have the feeling that this is going to be a long, difficult and windy road toward better habits. I’m up for the trip, though, because there’s something soul-sucking about dreading each day and I would rather live free from that kind of pain.