1. Â I just saw my first lilacs of the year out on a walk with the boys. Â Man oh man, what is it about those flowers? Â They just stop me in my tracks. Â I can’t imagine anything that shouts “Spring!” more eloquently than those beauties. Â Seeing them the other day made me very, very happy. Â It’s the little things in life that matter, right?
2. Â I’m on a real Mary Stewart kick these days. Â (Some of you longtime readers might recall my gushing about The Ivy Tree, my first of her books.) Â I recently read The Moonspinners, and I’m just starting Wildfire at Midnight. Â I’m tempted to call her novels “escape reading,” except that “captive reading” is probably a more appropriate moniker, given that her books exert this powerful force over me that makes me helpless to do almost anything but keep reading. Â That gal sure knew how to spin a plot. Â The settings are exotic (Crete, the French Alps, the Isle of Skye) and her Â heroines are timeless: though most of her books were written in the 1950s and 1960s, the female protagonists are resourceful, independent, and totally likable. Â Imagine Elizabeth Bennett thwarting treasure seekers in Delphi, and you get the picture.
3. Â It seems that the Moyer family has at last escaped from the Dark Realm of Sickness (that sound you hear is me knocking on wood till my knuckles turn blue). Â Ever since February, we’ve all been plagued in turn by various coughs, colds, and viruses. Â But now … well, we’re in pretty good shape. Â And I should take this opportunity to share something that saved my sanity and my sleep during my own illness: a fabulous home remedy for coughs. Â I first discovered it when I was pregnant with Luke, and was desperate to find something I could safely take. Â It’s a concoction of ginger, cayenne pepper, white vinegar, honey, and water, and yes, it is truly vile. Â My theory is that it works because after one taste, your body is psychologically broken and willing to agree to any demand you make Â (“DON’T make me take anymore! Â I’ll do anything you say!”). Â Seriously, though, it was leagues more effective than the prescription cough suppressant my doctor gave me. Â And so I share it here, in the hopes that it may bring you comfort the next time you are hacking away.
Have a lilacky, cough-free weekend.
Lilacs in a Window by Mary Cassatt