A few good gems

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This was my view on Thursday from a nearly-deserted library at Texas A&M.  I left the kids with lunch money, and no other instructions whatsoever, and headed up to campus for about five hours of quiet and reading. It was lovely. I wish I could do it every day, but the 70 mile commute (one way) eats up too much time. I'm working again today and thinking about the weekend!

But that's enough about me. Here's some cool stuff I found when I should have been doing laundry or making dinner or writing something: 

Most people either love or hate Martha Stewart. I'm a Martha-lover.  It's not that I can't acknowledge her well-publicized downfalls; it's more that I don't think you can expect success on the Martha-level without changing up the game in some fashion. And she's a game-changer baby. Check out NYMag's "Martha Stewart's Best Lesson: Don't Give a Damn": "Martha’s attitude provides a refreshingly clear path to success: work hard, know your value, and have enough confidence in your work and value to keep pressing forward whether or not people seem to like you." 

I love this essay, "The Empty-Nest Yard Sale" -- a reflection on a boy's last years at home from the dad's point of view. I felt he totally got me when he compared an (unsuccessful) conversation with his son to an episode of Parenthood. I used to base my parenting on the Walton Family. But now it's the Bravermans. All the way.

This New York Times article, "Don't Make Your Children the Exception to Every Rule," caught my eye because the author's opening story happened to me. Look! I'm exactly like a New York Times author! Basically, this article looks at process versus outcome: "When we look at the research on the childhood precursors of adult well-being – the traits we see in children who go on to become happy adults – we find that the driving factor is childhood conscientiousness, not childhood happiness." --Which gives me complete license to hold my kids' feet to the fire! (I'm referring to a metaphorical fire. Obviously. Ahem.)

Some of you recommended The Light Between Oceans by M. L. Stedman. Wow. Everything was going along just fine, and then I got to the end . . . and I cried like a baby. It's particularly brutal to a mother's heart. But it's good. Read it. Just don't say I didn't warn you.

I made these Pioneer Woman nachos for dinner last night. Two thumbs up. Is it weird that I'm so obsessed with PW? Can anyone get me an invite to her lodge? Anyone? 

Maybe I'm the last person on the Internet to know about this, but have you read Suri's Burn Book? It's kind of hilarious. I may (or may not) have read through the last 100 posts in one sitting.

That's it. Peace out.