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Category Archives: Married Life

In Conclusion

Well, my friends, it has to come time for me to say adieu.  I never thought that I would have so much fun being a book blogger, nor did I realize that I was going to “meet” so many great people online and in the blogging world.  Reading through some of the best childrens books during the past year has been an amazing literary journey, but now I must start on a different type of journey.

My husband and I are in the process of adopting a sibling set of 3 children.  Over the course of the past few months, we have started preparing our lives for these children, and one of the hardest decisions I made was to discontinue The Literary Wife.  While I absolutely love blogging and sharing my love for reading with friends through this medium, I want to ensure that the majority of my time is spent with my children, caring for them and giving them the attention they need to recover from the traumatic few years they have experienced thus far in their lives.  I will definitely still be bouncing around, reading posts and commenting when I can, but I hope that I have your understanding in this new endeavor.

Thank you for your faithfulness to reading this blog and encouraging me in my reading challenge and my life challenges along the way.  Happy reading!

 

In Celebration of My Mother

As I have mentioned before, my parents started off parenthood a little different than most, being teenagers and admittedly not ready to be a mother and a father.  They struggled through it, making the most of what they had and working hard to fill in the spaces of a life that they wanted me to consider to be “good.”  Even though I was, from what I have heard, a good child, no one would choose to juggle college classes, a job, a toddler and a rocky marriage.  But they did.  They didn’t just endure through it, they chose it.

My dad and I have a special relationship, a friendship that is only in the beginning stages, after a rough reconciliation and acknowledgement of our mistakes throughout our lives.  There is no need to share details, as all you need to know is that I have the best Dad a girl could ask for.

Now, my mom, she is the champion.  She is the one that carried me from the beginning, not giving up on her child, staring doubt right in the face and saying no.  She is the one that endured sickness and tears during pregnancy, while the world around her probably seemed to be spiraling out of control.  She is the one who force-fed me vegetables, dried my tears and worked so hard to understand and love such a tremendously emotional child.  She is the one who took care of me while I had to stay home sick with yet another stomach ache, even with 2 toddlers running around her feet and all over the house.  She is the one that told me I could do anything that I set my mind to, even if it was followed by her sage advice on what decision to make.

As I enter into motherhood a bit differently than others as well, it is to my mother that I will look for an example, for a model in loving my little girls.  Happy Mother’s Day, Mom.  I wouldn’t trade you for the world.

 
3 Comments

Posted by on May 8, 2011 in Married Life

 

Great Things in March

Inspired by Kari, I have been keeping track and rejoicing in at least one great thing that happens each day and sharing them here.  This is my list for March:

March 1 – Having my little brother teach me about working out

March 2 – Spending the day with the kiddos and having Aubrey cuddle with me

March 3 – Good conversation with Maris

March 4 – Trying out our new pizza place

March 5 – Eating at People’s Grocery for the first time with Amanda

March 6 – My husband’s show at Kathouse

March 7 – Spending my morning with New Hope kiddos

March 8 – Dinner with the Duell family

March 9 – Late night conversation with the hubby

March 10 – Starting to enjoy reading Little Women

March 12 – Drinking chai and eating pizza with Elizabeth while observing Fake Patty’s Day

March 13 – Talking with Dawson about his current reads

March 14 – Watching the snow melt oh so quickly

March 15 – Convincing Steve to finally watch Across the Universe

March 16 – High temps in the 70s.  Enough said.

March 17 – Great opening games in the NCAA basketball tournament

March 18 – Planting my first garden

March 19 – Splurge grocery shopping with my parents and brother

March 20 – Watching March Madness with my brothers

March 21 – A trip to the park in 80 degree weather

March 22 – The kiddos enjoying Mr. Steve’s sing-a-long

March 24 – Breakfast at The Chef with Steve

March 25 – Random trip to my parents house because of my brother’s dead car

March 26 – Finishing up the living room decorations

March 27 – Trying raspberry vinaigrette dressing

March 28 – Working at the desk with people I haven’t worked with before and enjoying it

March 29 – Starting to make dreads in my hair!

March 30 – Homemade eggrolls with Amy

 
4 Comments

Posted by on April 1, 2011 in Married Life

 

Thoughts on Careers

For those that have just started following this blog, you might not know that I quit my well-paying managerial position a few months ago.  Since then, I have been working part-time at a public library, babysitting here and there, and looking forward to substitute teaching soon.  I have also been doing some thinking the past few weeks about careers and what the rest of my life might look like.

To give you a little background (for those who don’t know this already), I completed a bachelor of arts degree in geography in 2008, fully intending to complete my masters degree soon after, and possibly attain doctorate status as well.  For reasons that I still can’t explain or understand, I didn’t follow through on those plans.  I started my first full-time job a few months after I graduated, met my future husband not long after I started that job, and have now been married for a little over a year.

To get real and honest with y’all, I never thought I would end up here, in the life that I am in.  Of course I thought I would be married someday, but not at 25 years old, and I also assumed that not long after getting married, that I would start a family.  Unfortunately, that plan we had in our minds is not being played out, for reasons currently unknown to us.  All that to say, I might need an actual career after all.

Why am I telling you all of this?  Simply because I need some advice and/or perspective.  I want to hear your story.  I want to know why you chose the career you did, or why you might have ended up where you are without actually planning on it.  For those moms out there, what is your life like and would you choose something to add to your life career-wise?  Tell me your story, friends, so I can continue on with mine with confidence.

 
17 Comments

Posted by on March 4, 2011 in Married Life

 

Our Vegetarian Journey

Before I start sharing my experiences, recipes and general foodie information, I want to offer some explanation.  As stated previously, my husband and I have been working on the vegetarian lifestyle for about a year now.  We started with cutting out beef because we found out about all the grains that cattle unnaturally eat, grains that could be used to feed humans that are starving.  Cattle can live off grass, I promise.  This was a very hard decision considering that we live in cattle-raising central.  We actually have a few family friends that raise cattle for a living, but have grass-fed cattle farms, and if we decide to start eating beef again, we would most definitely purchase from them.

After a few months of avoiding beef, we decided to cut out all red meats, leaving chicken, turkey and fish, which we very much enjoy.  But it was only after watching Food, Inc. that we decided to try the full plunge into vegetarianism.  If you have ever viewed this documentary, you will know exactly why.  It turns out that chicken farms are among the worst in the meat industry, injecting numerous growth hormones to shorten the animal’s lifespan, and keeping the animals in a disgusting environment during their lives and during their slaughter and processing.  The greed and corruption of the meat industry is utterly appalling.  Please keep in mind that I am making many blanket statements that are not meant to be blanket statements.  I realize that this is not the case with some contributors to the meat industry, but we have made the choice to be better safe than sorry.

After about a month of cutting out meat altogether, we realized what a difficult change this was going to be and, unfortunately, went back on our word.  I have to say that committing to vegetarianism is extremely hard.  Not only did we face internal difficulties, but we also had many people in our lives not understand the decision that we had made and not be very supportive.  Understandably so, as we live in the heart of America, where it seems to be tough to wrap our minds around the fact that there are things in the world that are corrupt.  In the end, we decided to claim the term “flexitarian,” a person who enjoys a mostly meatless diet, but occasionally does indulge in meat.  For instance, my uncle so generously provided us with some deer meat, deer that he killed in season and processed himself.  Also, as mentioned before, there are many grass-fed cattle farms that we would be more than happy to purchase from, if we so choose.

I don’t doubt that some of you will skip over this post, thinking in your head, “Just get to the recipes already!”  But I wanted to make sure and cover some bases before I dive into my adventures in cooking and trying out a mostly meat-free diet.  Please feel free to comment, positively or negatively, about our journey to this point.  I welcome criticism and encouragement, and I want you as my readers to be along for the ride with me.

 
4 Comments

Posted by on February 20, 2011 in Married Life, Vegetarian

 

A Few Changes. . .

For those of you that have been following my blog from the beginning (a meager ten months ago), you know that I have included a few recipes and posts on cooking experiences along the way.  Originally, I wanted my blog to be focused on 2 things: books and my life as a wife, hence the title, The Literary Wife.  Along the way, it has become mostly focused on books.  As the Top 100 Childrens Books reading challenge finishes up, I will be making some changes to refocus what I write about and feature here on the blog.  Be prepared for some rambling. . .

I love being a wife.  Being a wife is often difficult and challenging, but for the most part rewarding.  At this point in our lives, our biggest role is supporting each other emotionally and making decisions together.  We don’t have children or a big house to tend to.  We have enough money to enjoy our lives with ease, but not too much that we are spending it all the time.  All that to say that, if I talked about my life as a wife right now, you would be bored and get tired of hearing me rave about how great my husband is.

However, one of the most important roles that I have right now is the cook in our family.  Before I go into detail about that, I want to address the issue of gender roles in families.  I am not the cook in our family because I am the woman.  I am not the apartment-cleaner in our family because I am the woman.  I am not the grocery-shopper because I am the woman.  I do these things because, currently, I am working part-time while my husband works at least 40 hours a week.  Previously, when I was working an 8-5, he was working 50-55 hours a week.  We decided that I would be in charge of these things because I had more free time, not because I am the woman and he is the man.  I want to clear that up so you know 1) that I am not a big fan of traditional gender roles in marriage and 2) my husband is fabulous because he has volunteered numerous times to go grocery shopping or cook after a long day at work.

Now, on to the cooking part.  Before I got married, my diet consisted of frozen pizza and Kraft macaroni and cheese.  I wish that I was kidding you.  After I got married, my husband and I discussed moving to a vegetarian or a flexitarian lifestyle, which requires a lot more work and thinking than being a carnivore.  It is because of this that I have acquired a genuine love of being in the kitchen.  Cooking meals for my family is my large contribution, as it requires thought and effort to keep us under budget, healthy and enjoying each other’s company while eating.  As I move forward with my blog, I want to share with you my love of cooking, hoping that you can glean something from the knowledge that I have acquired and maybe pick up a favorite recipe or two.

Here are some things you will NOT see here on the blog:

  • Recipes in which meat is the main course or the majority of the dish (while I will not push vegetarianism on you, I just do not have interest in huge bulks of meat in recipes that I feature)
  • Me bragging about all the expertise that I have in the kitchen or with food.  This is the point of me talking about cooking, the fact that I know little to nothing and I want you to be along for the ride as I learn to navigate the kitchen and a vegetarian lifestyle.
  • Baking or sweet recipes.  I’m sorry, Ginger, but I do not enjoy cupcakes (or cookies or pies) in the least and I don’t see much point writing about things that I won’t even eat.

Here are some posts you might see in the future on the blog:

  • Cookbook reviews
  • Featured recipes
  • Thoughts on the vegetarian/flexitarian lifestyle
  • Guest posts from my friends who have knowledge on cooking
  • Easy-peasy recipes
  • Tips for maintaining a usable and comfortable kitchen

These are just some ideas that I have floating around, some of which might not make the cut.  I just wanted to give you an idea of what to expect, as I am not one that enjoys surprises.  And please keep in mind that this is still The Literary Wife, and I will still be featuring YA and children’s book reviews.  Thanks for reading through this huge post and I would love to hear your thoughts about my blog and its future.

 
6 Comments

Posted by on February 19, 2011 in Food, Married Life

 

Great Things in January

As inspired by Kari, I have started to post end-of-the-month posts including great things that happened during that month.  Here is the list for January:

January 1:  Hubby finally convincing me to watch Kick-Ass and actually enjoying it

January 2: A long soak in the bubble bath

January 3: Blaring Lady Gaga in the car ride home from work

January 4: Seeing a movie in the theater, an activity that I participate in about twice a year

January 5: Pokey Stix from Gumby’s (little did I know that they might be my last)

January 7: Getting a book package in the mail!

January 8: Talking with my brother’s friend about reading challenges

January 9: A challenging message at New Hope

January 10: Playing Monopoly with Samuel and Steve

January 12: Dash & Lily’s Book of Dares. Enough said.

January 13: Getting a handmade card from the twins that I babysit

January 14: Watching Mona Lisa Smile with Steve (even if he didn’t like it)

January 15: Lunch with my Granny and cousin Addie

January 16: Hearing my husband be complimented like crazy

January 17: Going sticker crazy with the twins

January 18: A random conversation with a local convenience store manager

January 19: Great times over coffee with Joanna

January 20: An opportunity for a change at work

January 21: Seeing a lot of progress made on blogs during Bloggiesta

January 22: Dinner at Olive Garden with the hubby

January 23: Spending the afternoon with the Herveys

January 24: Spending my morning with a few New Hope munchkins while their moms had Bible study

January 25: Watching my brother’s basketball team pull off a last-minute win

January 26: Having the willpower to skip the afternoon nap

January 27: Successfully making cheese sauce!

January 29: Making some awesome decorating purchases at the thrift store

January 30: Getting to work at the desk at work

January 31: Having Halston over for dinner

 
2 Comments

Posted by on February 5, 2011 in Married Life