Pure Goodness

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Yesterday at work

Saturday, July 20th, 2013

Within context, it was obvious that a co-worker-who-shall-not-be-named was attempting to conjure the “If a tree falls in the forest and no one sees it, did it really happen?” idea. It didn’t go as planned.

Her:
“You know what they say: if the wind blows, does anyone even see it?”

Me:
JOY.

A few good men

Thursday, June 13th, 2013

The first half of 2013 was a busy time for the Parsons – my sister Becca got married in January, and my sister Sarah got married in April.

In the past, the thought of “brother-in-law” never really crossed my mind. I’ve had a sister-in-law (the world’s best) since I was 18, but that’s as far as my in-law reality stretched; I never spent much time thinking about what my sisters’ future partners would be like – probably because I assumed I’d have a husband before I had a brother-in-law. Courtesy chuckle.

But then, in quick succession, my younger sisters married really, really wonderful guys. Our family has grown by 2 this year (well, 3 if you count Becca’s new puppy the Grizz), and these guys have joined the circus that is the Parsons with grace and humor and generosity and care. I’m so thankful that we all love them (I’m sure they’re thankful for that, too – because we can be a cantankerous bunch).

My brother and sister-in-law captured Becca and Michael’s wedding back in January, and have done it again for Sarah and Creighton. The full post is here – and a glimpse is below. My favorite part (besides Micah and Tyler as hobbits, obviously, and Zion with the Grizz) is the look on Creighton and Sarah’s faces.

the day sarah and creighton got married. from WE ARE THE PARSONS on Vimeo.

In the words of Jo March, “I could never love anyone as I love my sisters.” And today, I’m thankful for the good men who love them, too.

Kris Orlowski / The Last Bison

Thursday, March 21st, 2013

My introversion has taken a beating lately. I’ve been running from one thing to the next, constantly surrounded by people, without any down time – and you introverts know how we need our down time.

But each person I’ve been around has been 100% worth it, and none more so than the 5 guys we had staying at our house for 3 nights this week. My dear friend Mark Isakson plays guitar(s) with singer/songwriter Kris Orlowski, and the band was in Colorado for a few shows. We piled them in every corner of our house, had a couple of late (way fun) nights, and on Monday, saw them open for the Last Bison.

The Last Bison are completely mesmerizing. Billed as “mountain-top chamber music,” these kids create an organized sonic pandemonium, all while dressed like Little House on the Prairie (girls in floor-length calico gowns, guys in brocade vests). They are insane and entertaining and completely worth experiencing.

And Kris’s songs – oh my word. As we left the show, Hannah said, “No one would not like that music.” And it’s true – his voice is gorgeous, his melodies surprising, and the musicianship top notch. In the spirit of Hannah’s comment, I dare you to not like his songs.

The guys are touring with the Last Bison for a few weeks, and if they’re coming through your city, you must go. You MUST. Tell them I sent you and get a free hug*.

March 21 (tonight!) :: Treefort Music Fest – Boise, ID
March 22 :: College of Idaho – Caldwell, ID
March 24, 2013 :: Media Club – Vancouver, BC
March 26 :: Doug Fir – Portland, OR
March 29 :: Rickshaw – San Francisco, CA
March 30 :: The Mint – Los Angeles, CA
April 2 :: The Loft – San Diego, CA

*Not a promise, but… well, no, I bet I could promise it.

Family resemblance

Thursday, March 14th, 2013

My little dog Toad is the best. She really is. She is so ridiculous and happy and cute, and she’s always excited to see me, even if I’ve been in an ugly mood all day or my hair is looking like a sea anemone or I’m having an existential crisis. No matter what, she’s hopping in the air as high as her three legs will boost her and smiling a huge dog smile and breathing that horrible dragon breath all over everything.

And these are her relatives:

“O Holy Night”

Monday, December 24th, 2012

Here is my friend Charlie Hardin Murphey of Commitment Bells singing “O Holy Night” better than anyone ever.

Merry Christmas, everyone.

– – – – –

Don’t forget to enter the Stuck giveaway – a winner will be chosen on Friday.

30. Thirty. 30!!

Saturday, August 4th, 2012

“Time and tide wait for no man, but time always stands still for a woman of 30.”  -Robert Frost

I may be less than a day in, but I can say with confidence that I love my 30s. Today has been the best ever – breakfast with a full house of guests and sisters and friends, flower deliveries, coffee deliveries, furniture deliveries, good words, party prep, and messages from friends all over the world… including this:

Can you handle it? I can’t. I can’t handle it. I am the luckiest girl in the world, and don’t deserve the friends that I have – but will shamelessly and gratefully take every minute that they give me.

I wish I could tell you how loved I feel today, but I just can’t.  It’s the best day.  My heart is bursting.  I am overwhelmed and thankful and happy, and I just want time to stand still.

Thank you, dear readers – near and far, known and unknown – for being a part of my life.

Never wasted

Wednesday, June 6th, 2012

I spent last weekend in Nashville, and it could not have been better – not even if Ryan Gosling had given me a puppy.  Not if I’d found a bucket of gold.

I’m at a loss as to how it happened, but in the two short years that I lived in Tennessee, I somehow developed the deepest of friendships with the widest network of people.  It’s like that song that kids sing in Sunday School, “Deep and wide, deep and wide, there’s a fountain flowing deep and wide” – except I won’t make you sing along with hand motions.  There is no dancing on this blog.

I was in town for three days, and every interaction, every conversation, felt meaningful.  Knowing how dry my spirit has been these days, my mom’s hope for me on this trip was that I would “only spend time with life-giving people” – which, given the folks I know in Nashville, is the easiest thing ever.

Miranda Runcie, Catherine Clement, Kelley Kirker, Kelli Liszka, Emily Konouchi, Ansley Quiros, Melissa Sproul, Julie Ott, Joy Beth Bodie, Cara Meissner, Hunter Lane, Duane Stephenson, David Nguyen, Zac Kubilus, Amanda Williams, Meg Souder, Joey & Brynn Sanchez, Annie Downs, Hitoshi Yamaguchi, Meredith Gruner, Paul Zimmerman-Clayton: time with you, no matter how short, is never, ever wasted.

Caine’s Arcade

Tuesday, May 22nd, 2012

You’ve probably seen this, since apparently it’s been viral for a while.  I don’t know how I missed it, since the internet is my most frequent stomping ground (ugh, depressing).  Anyhow, it was new to me.

Take 10 minutes to watch this short film called “Caine’s Arcade” about a 9-year old boy who built an elaborate DIY arcade out of cardboard.  The ingenuity and cleverness are astounding.

Just when I think that technology is ruining all of our brains, a kid like this comes along and renews my faith in creativity.  Caine’s sweet heart won me over.  His square root security system blew my mind.  And his reaction to the crowd made me cry.

Visit Caine’s website, throw a few bucks at his college fund, and if you’re in L.A., make my day and go buy a Fun Pass.

How a kitchen appliance reminded me of magic

Tuesday, August 9th, 2011

I find it harder and harder to believe in magic these days.

Life isn’t easy, you know.  It can be full of tough things.  We learn to suck it up, because no one is going to come along and fix it for us.  Right?  We’ve waited and waited, but with no imminent rescue, we eventually make up our minds to stop wishing, and just do what we have to do.  It’s a long and lonely road, but after some time, we learn to just walk forward – head down, no questions.

Do not want.  Do not need.  Do not wish.  Do not hope.

And this doesn’t leave room for much magic.

I have to tell you: lately, I’ve been living without hopes or expectations.  Time has taught me that expectations, however small, will eventually lead to disappointment – so instead of hoping for good things, it’s easier to just take whatever life deals you.

But my birthday brought me a little magic.

Beyond the fact that I saw a black bear, and climbed Mt. Princeton, and sat on a tailgate of an F-150 drinking PBR and talking about Rebecca Black and O.J. Simpson with a new friend, when I got home I had a huge package waiting for me that said it was from “Your Fan Club.”

My fan club.

And I opened the envelope, and realized who it was from: so many of YOU.  People who I know and have met only thanks to blogging.

And in the box was the hot rod of kitchen appliances: a bright red KitchenAid stand mixer.

I shrieked, and then bubbled over, gushing, saying things like, “AND I DIDN’T EVEN HAVE TO GET MARRIED.”  I have always wanted a KitchenAid mixer, but it’s one of those things seemingly reserved for the espoused – because who would ever be able to justify that kind of money on themselves?

I have burned through hand mixer after hand mixer, only to abandon them altogether and stir things by muscle.  And remember, this is fine – you learn to not wish or hope for anything better or easier than what you have.  “You get what you get, and you don’t throw a fit” is a popular motto these days.

But every now and then, people surprise you.  They pay attention, and take action, and bring you the happiest shock you can imagine.  They conspire behind your back to bombard you with love.  They choose red because they think you’re “a red hot siren” (OMG).  Their kind words are sprinkled like magic, and all of a sudden, a little bit of hope is renewed.

I am humbled and grateful – not only for the KitchenAid (although it is one of the kindest, most generous gifts I have ever been given), but for the reminder that magic is worth hoping for.

Thank you, friends – you know who you are – from the bottom of my hope-filled heart, and my cookie-filled tummy.

Power up

Thursday, July 21st, 2011

I think my nephew missed the point of the Sunday School lesson.