Sunday, September 28, 2008

Garrison Keillor in Raleigh

Thanks to a Twitter update fron Ginny, George and I headed to Raleigh this afternoon to hear Garrison Keillor talk at the McKimmon Center. We stopped by Quail Ridge Books first to buy our tickets, then got to the venue nice and early.

Keillor, of "Prairie Home Companion" fame, has a new book out called Liberty, and while this was a book promotion, he didn't talk much about his book. He talked for about 50 minutes or so about all sorts of things, and was very entertaining. He even sang some during his talk, and seemed to refer very little to his notes.

After the talk, he entertained a number of questions (including one from George), then stayed to sign books. I'd bought his book, Love Me, before the talk started in hopes of getting the book signed, but it turned out it was going to take a while, so I decided to pass. Looking on the Barnes and Noble, it doesn't look like my choice of Garrison Keelor books is very good. Oh well. I still enjoyed the talk alot!

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

10 on Tuesday: 10 Great Things That Happened This Summer

Here are my answers to a new meme (the 10 on Tuesday that I do sometimes). I enjoyed coming up with this list (in no particular order, by the way); it's a really nice recap of my summer.

1) My department moved to another building, and I really like the new building and location (better than I thought I would)!
2) The Olympics--I especially enjoyed watching the swimmers (especially Torres and Phelps)and the runners (especially the men's and women's marathon finishes). I had a hard time staying awake for most of the gymnastics events, and could've done with less volleyball, but all in all, I really enjoyed watching the Olympics this summer.
3) I joined the Galloway training group and started training for a half marathon.
4) I ran/walked 15 miles one Saturday morning with the Galloway group. This is the farthest I've ever gone.
5) My parents and sister visited ERUUF one Sunday when I was the worship associate, and they got to hear me speak.
6) I finally got to visit Merchants Millpond State Park.
7) I was interviewed by two different Korean news teams doing separate documentaries on the health benefits on eating rice.
8) George and I celebrated our first year of living together and renewed our apartment lease.
9) George and I took a vacation to Winston-Salem, enjoyed being a tourist there, and visited with several friends and a cousin.
10) George and I also visited Oxford and Roxboro together on daytrips as part of my NC Odyssey Project. We do make good travel buddies; maybe we should sign up for "The Amazing Race!"

Okay, so what would make YOUR list of 10 great things that happened this summer? :-D

Friday, September 19, 2008

Finding My Way

I found myself at an Evening Prayer service at St. Joseph's Episcopal Church this evening after work, and it was pretty comforting after the day I had. It wasn't the worst day, but not the best either.

I may have mentioned a while back that I applied for a Master Trainer position with the State Library of North Carolina. 16 people were selected, and I learned via email earlier this week that I didn't make the cut. The rejection email offered application feedback, so I decided to take advantage of that. I made an appointment for a phone conversation, and that happened this morning. She gave valuable feedback, for sure, and I feel like her advice will come in handy in the future. I'm just a bit dissapointed. It does have me thinking about what to tackle next, though! I'm not sure which way to go yet, but I don't feel rudderless. I have some good possibilities I'm mulling over, none of which involves moving, changing jobs, or anything like that.
After lunch, I went to a memorial service at the library for a coworker who passed away from cancer a few months ago. I didn't know her very well, but those who did thought very highly of her. I was intrigued, in a morbid way, to learn more about her life. I was really touched by what some of her coworkers had to say about her, I got rather teary-eyed. If I'd known her better, I probably would've been blubbering away. On the way back to my building, it had me thinking (again) about the direction of my life, and which direction I want to go next. I have some things going on, both professionally (mostly training right now) and personally (the half marathon and Junior League are the biggest visible things at the moment). What's next? There are some interesting possibilities out there, but for another blog post.
It seemed eerily appropriate, then, that after the Evening Prayer service at St. Joe's, that a lady I met afterward (who's a Vestry member) gave me a nice canvas bag with the words, "Finding the Way Together" across the front, in addition to the church's name and contact information.
I didn't take it as a sign that I should join this church or anything like that (I'm happy at ERUUF, after all), but I must say that I did enjoy the responsive reading during the 15-minute service, and especially the fellowship afterward, as the people in attendance (uh, 10 or so, not many at all!) shook everyone else's hand in peace and hung around talking for a few minutes. It was all very charming and comforting. As it happens, that church holds Evening Prayer Monday through Friday, and it's about 5 minutes from work, so maybe I'll stop back in on occasion.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

10 on Tuesday-10 Simple Things That Make You Happy

Here's another meme from the weekly "10 on Tueday" email I receive, and it's a nice one to think about on a rainy Tuesday!

Here's a list of 10 simple things that make me happy. They're the first things that crossed my mind. Now that my brain is cranking, I keep thinking of more (not a bad thing)! These are in no particular order (although hugs and kisses from George remain high on the list on any given day, not just on Tuesdays!):

Hugs and kisses from George
A good book
A fire in the fireplace
Hot chocolate with marshmallows
A handwritten letter in the mailbox
A good run outdoors
Running a personal best time at a road race
Being in the mountains
The smell of cinnamon-apple cider simmering on the stove

Okay, so what makes your list of 10 simple things that make you happy?

Monday, September 15, 2008

If I Want to Write...

I came across a current printing of the title If You Want to Write: A Book About Art, Independence, and Spirit, by Barbara Ueland, on the processing shelves of our department earlier today, and it piqued my interest. It looks like a classic of sorts for writers, or at least writer wannabees. Since I've wanted to be a writer since I was a kid, (and here I am with a handful of blogs, which I enjoy writing!), I decided to put a hold on this book, for when it makes its way through cataloging and processing to the circulation desk at the library.

What would I want to write? Aside from the Great American Novel, you mean? I've thought about writing a book about my family tree/history. (I imagine it would be just for family.) I'm also thinking it would be fun if my North Carolina Odyssey Project spawned a book of some sort. I've been encouraged to write a book about my weight loss and running. I love to read mysteries, and wonder if I'd be any good at writing them. (I know, I know, one doesn't necessarily lead to the other!)

Are you a writer? If so, I'd love to hear about it! Are you a writer wannabee? Then what are your writing dreams?

Saturday, September 13, 2008

Speaking of Faith

I recently added a new (for me) podcast subscription to my iPod called "Speaking of Faith," and it's been a pleasant surprise! Krista Tipett, the host, talks about a variety of subjects (or so it seems, I'm only on my second episode) relating to "religion, meaning, ethics, and ideas." The first episode I listened to was about a man who found spirituality in fish and fishing. The one I'm listening to now is an interview with Rick Warren (and his wife, Kay) of Saddleback Church. My only regret (and I hate to call it that) with this podcast is that each one (so far) is 53 minutes long, and I typically don't have 53 uninterrupted minutes to listen to a podcast! It's taking me a few days to listen to each episode, partly because I listen to several podcasts in addition to SOF.

In checking the podcast's website this morning, I learned there's a book out that's spawned from the podcast. I just discovered the library I work for holds it, but it's checked out, so I've put a hold on it. :)
Listening to this podcast has reminded me, in part, why I enjoy going to Eno River Unitarian Universalist Fellowship, where different faiths and spiritual journeys are welcome.

Friday, September 12, 2008

Evening Rainbow

It started raining on my way home this evening, and I saw this rainbow! I was glad I had my camera handy. The rainbow was visible for the last several minutes of my commute, and it was a great way to end the work week!

Now There's Some Inspiration!

I recently stumbled upon a new (to me) running blog that included a mention about an 81-year-old Maryland man who finished a local 5K road race in 27:06! Needless to say, that impressed me quite a bit. I'd love to be able to talk to that person and learn his secrets of longevity and an active lifestyle. I hope I'm still going that strong at 81! A link to the newspaper article is here.

I was thinkng about running in a 5K road race in the morning (there are a couple of possibilities), but my nose is still stuffy and I've been sneezing this afternoon. A few weeks ago, I did sign up for a 1-mile road race, the Magnificent Mile, on Sunday afternoon. I think I'll just get a slow, easy (and maybe short, depending on how I'm feeling) run in tomorrow morning, and do the 1-miler Sunday afternoon.

Monday, September 08, 2008

Hooray for Historic Preservation!

For quite a while I've had a dream of restoring an old (Victorian or something like that) home, so I've enjoyed walking through the Trinity Park neighborhood in Durham and watching some of the renovations going on in that area. One of the projects I've been pleased to see is the old King's Daughters Home on Buchanan Blvd. When I walked past there a few weeks ago, I noticed there was some renovation going on, so I googled it later and learned it had been bought and was going to become a bed and breakfast inn! A little while ago I walked by it again and saw a sign with the projected opening date of April 2009, and a website for the to-be King's Daughters Inn. Check out their website for progress pictures of the construction and renovation, which I love to see!

Sunday, September 07, 2008

The End of a Short Vacation

I head back to work tomorrow after taking last Thursday and Friday off of work with George. We didn't do as much as we'd planned, but it was still a nice break.

Thursday morning I decided to get my 10-mile run in while George had an appointment in Cary. I went to Shelley Lake for the run, and ran into Donna, another Galloway groupie. It was fun to run into a running acquaintance by accident, and it was a good run, to boot.

Thursday afternoon, I joined George, his brother, and his dad for lunch at The Food Factory in Cary. I hadn't been to the Food Factory before, and enjoyed a veggie wrap.

Friday, George and I drove up to Person County to have lunch at Clarksville Station and explore Roxboro. I blogged about the excursion on my North Carolina Odyssey Project blog, where I'm keeping track of my journey through all one hundred counties in North Carolina. My Person County post is here. Friday evening, we joined George's family for Shabbat dinner.

Yesterday morning, I enjoyed puttering around while the rain and wind from Tropical Storm Hanna blew through. (I love storms, as long as they aren't harmful!) Last night we celebrated a couple of family birthdays with George's family at Bonefish Grill in Cary. Little Talia turns 3 tomorrow, so it was fun to see her really enjoy getting birthday presents this year.

I've been having trouble with my red iPod Nano lately...the screen keeps going white. I've rebooted each time, but it's gotten harder and harder to get the index screen of songs and podcasts to show up. So, I decided I'd had enough of it this afternoon. I looked online and ordered a black 3rd generation Nano from Circuit City's website, and opted to pick it up from the nearest store with one in stock. I headed off to Cary (lots of time in Cary this weekend!), and came back with a brand new iPod! I've had fun figuring out how to fill it this evening. I think I've got what I need from the old iPod on it (it's still charging, so I haven't plugged the earbuds in yet).

Tuesday, September 02, 2008

What Lesley Means

What Lesley Means

You are relaxed, chill, and very likely to go with the flow.

You are light hearted and accepting. You don't get worked up easily.

Well adjusted and incredibly happy, many people wonder what your secret to life is.

You are friendly, charming, and warm. You get along with almost everyone.

You work hard not to rock the boat. Your easy going attitude brings people together.

At times, you can be a little flaky and irresponsible. But for the important things, you pull it together.

You are the total package - suave, sexy, smart, and strong.

You have the whole world under your spell, and you can influence almost everyone you know.

You don't always resist your urges to crush the weak. Just remember, they don't have as much going for them as you do.

You are a free spirit, and you resent anyone who tries to fence you in.

You are unpredictable, adventurous, and always a little surprising.

You may miss out by not settling down, but you're too busy having fun to care.

Ten on Tuesday: Ten People You'd Like to Meet

I just got the "Ten on Tuesday" meme in my inbox, and thought it was a fun one. For me, the list of people I'd like to meet is a fluid one, as I learn about more interesting people and as current events unfold. It was hard to narrow it down to just 10 people, but if I just had to pick 10 people to meet for dinner this evening, here's who I'd pick at this moment (in no particular order):

Hillary Clinton
Barack Obama
John McCain
Sarah Palin
Carol Burnett
David Cutliffe
Rosa Parks
Barbara Walters
Harper Lee
Deena Kastor

Who would make YOUR list?