wimmhtw* 6.16

1. BattleBots is back with a new season. It’s one of those fun summer shows that celebrates nerdom in a fun and innovative way. And we get to imitate Barry from The Big Bang Theory. “Wules? This is a stweet fight! There awe no wules!” from the robot-fighting episode.

2. I am very grateful for cleaning machines. I use our washer and dryer every week. I would be so lost without them. I know this for certain, because they have both broken down in the space of the last year or two, and they have been replaced with (happily) very reliable ones. I also love my dishwasher, even though I use it more as a dish drainer when I wash dishes by hand than an actual dishwasher. Still love it though. And last but certainly not least is our housekeeper, Laura. She comes in once a month and does all the scrubbing and dusting and vacuuming so that we don’t have to. She is the best! We love her lots and lots, and we’d be lost without her too.

3. Audiobooks. I’ve listened to audiobooks for years, but I took a break for several months where I was to stressed out to listen to either podcasts or books. But over the past few weeks I’ve started listening at work again, and getting to listen while people read books to me is such an amazing experience. I feel bad for anyone who still resists the idea for whatever reason. Audiobooks are the best!

*what is making me happy this week

wimmhtw* 6.9

1. A rough week. My boyfriend went in for jury duty on Monday morning, and while the trial he was potentially a juror for was continued and he got to go home, he was at the courthouse long enough to catch a really nasty cold. I stayed strong until about Thursday, when I started failing. By the weekend, I was down for the count. But all things considered, the misery of a nasty cold is not so bad compared to so many other things that could go wrong. So unhappy and grateful at the same time.

2. Soft tissues and Sprite and Campbell’s chicken and noodle soup.

3. Despite being sick, my fantastic boyfriend went out yesterday and got me doughnuts from the new place in town I’ve been wanting to try, Fairway Creamery. It’s a doughnut and ice cream place from my favorite chocolatier here in Kansas City, Christopher Elbow. And the doughnuts were amazing!

4. A bonus. This weekend was the Big Slick weekend, where celebrities come back home to Kansas City, with lots of their famous friends, to raise money for Children’s Mercy Hospital. They sponsor a variety of activities around town for a couple of days and go to the hospital and hang out with the kids, and it’s incredibly inspiring to see how successful they are and still how humble. So our hometown celebrities are definitely making me happy this week: Rob Riggle, Eric Stonestreet, Paul Rudd, David Koechner, and Jason Sudekis, thank you for your example. And congrats on the $2.5 million raised!

*what is making me happy this week

wimmhtw* 6.1

1. There were tornadoes in our city Tuesday night. It was bad. One tornado was a mile wide and on the ground for 2-2.5 hours. There was a lot of damage done to farms and buildings, but miraculously no one was killed. And so many thanks go to our local news and weather teams for keeping us all updated on exactly where the tornadoes were and where they were headed. I am certain that many lives were spared because of their work.

2. It was a quieter week. Aside from the tornadoes, there wasn’t much drama. I need more weeks like this in my life! For the better part of the past 12 months, I have been overwhelmed and stressed out. Things finally quieted back down in my life, and so I’m finally starting to breathe again and to pull my shoulders back down from my ears. I like this drama-free lifestyle. I am hoping it lasts. I really want it to last.

3. Best news of the day—I have cake! It’s store bought, but still tasty.

*what is making me happy this week

and . . . gratuitous cat photo. because: Don.

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wimmhtw* 5.26

1. It’s Memorial Day weekend, and while I am certainly humbled by all those who have given so much for our freedoms and all, I am also so, so, so grateful to have an extra day off work. We only get off work for so many days in a year, and we haven’t had a holiday since New Year’s Day. So I’m very grateful for an extra day to breathe and recharge and get caught up on everything that’s happened since January. (Just kidding. I’m way more behind than that!) But I am grateful for this country and our freedoms and so thankful for those who sacrificed so that we can have 3-day weekends.

2. Routines. My boyfriend and I have routines that we stick to most weekends. There are certain errands we run on Saturdays and certain ones in Sundays. We may change it up a little from time to time, but most of the time we’re pretty consistent. And while it may sound boring, it works for us, and it means we don’t forget anything while we’re out (which I would totally do otherwise!). Mostly I’m just happy and grateful that I’ve found someone I can be boring with and still be so happy!

3. And this guy. This adorable, chatty, snuggly, playful, goofy, sweet guy.

*what is making me happy this week

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wimmhtw* 5.19

1. Next weekend is a 3-day weekend, and I can’t even express how much I need that. I will be counting the days until Friday!

2. Bayern won the Bundesliga, 7th year in a row. As sad as I was to see my Dortmund come in second, Bayern deserved it. They had a rough start to their season, but they pulled it back. Plus, they had 2 players who were leaving Bundesliga after that last game, Ribery and Robben. Rumor has it (according to my boyfriend, as I’m too tired for even a basic Google search right now) that Ribery is heading to play for the Middle East somewhere and Robben is coming to MLS. But for that last game with Bayern, not only did they both get to play, but they both scored a final goal for their team. It was a really beautiful game and a beautiful celebration (except for that part where Ribery took his shirt off). But it was a very well deserved championship, and it was so amazing to be a part of it, even if only as an observer and fan halfway across the world.

3. It was a peaceful, relaxing weekend with lots of time for reading. I needed that after a busy, complicated week. That made me happy.

*what is making me happy this week

wimmhtw* 5.12

1. Yesterday we had friends over for pizza, ice cream, and a very long game of my boyfriend’s newest board game obsession, Talisman. It was actually a lot of fun, and I look forward to playing it again. If you like really nerdy board games that take a long time, check it out. It’s like Dungeon and Dragons Monopoly (per our fiend Deana), and it has enough expansions that you may have to buy several large tables to play the entire game. (So far we just have the basic game, but I know more is coming.)

2. Big soccer news. For those of us who are rabid fans of Sporting KC, you probably already heard that the universe has capitulated to our desire to #bringbennyback! Benny Feilhaber, previously a fantastic midfielder for us who left to spend some time at LAFC and then the Colorado Rapids, is back where he belongs. And I know that I am not alone in being super excited to see him in our midfield again! This season has been far more difficult and injury-ridden than expected, and we desperately need the help! Also, Jimmy Medranda has been practicing with the team, so it’s just a matter of time before we get him back in the lineup after a long recovery from knee surgery.

3. This morning, I got to see my Premier League team Manchester City win the league and get celebrated for all their hard work and teamwork. So happy for them! And a little sad for my Sunday mornings now that Premier League soccer is done until August. Next weekend will bring the end of the season for Bundesliga, and it’s a race to the end for my team, currently #2, Dortmund, and my boyfriend’s team currently #! Bayern. There are only 2 points separating these teams, so anything is still possible. (Honestly, they’re both great teams and have worked their butts off all season, so either team getting the top spot will be worth celebrating. But if will be better if we win [go Bumblebees!!] and I can hold that over my boyfriend for an undetermined amount of time, possibly forever).

*what is making me happy this week

wimmhtw* 5.5

1. The past few months I have let my email inboxes get freakishly out of control, so this afternoon, I set to work on cleaning them out. I may not get this done for a while yet, but I’ve already made a big dent. I am very happy about that.

2. It rained last week, stormed actually, and while I don’t mind the rain, this weekend has been sunny and perfectly wonderful outside. Not too hot yet, not too cool, not too windy, not too pollen-y. They’re talking about more rain for this coming week, and I’m okay with that, especially if it keeps the temperatures down a little. Usually, we get a week or so of spring and then the temperatures jump to the 90s, so these 60s and 70s are downright luxurious.

3. My independent bookstore, Rainy Day Books. Last weekend was Independent Bookstore Day, and I wasn’t able to make it there (we had tickets for Avengers), so I placed an order online to pick up. We went yesterday to pick up my books, and (of course) to buy more. This is my haul. And the best part? The bottom 3 are signed! Frances Mayes, Sally Field, and Alexander McCall Smith. So excited!!

*what is making me happy this week

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wimmhtw* 4.28

1. We went to see Avengers Endgame yesterday, and it really was a great ending to the long series of movies. I’m not going to give any specifics, but I was glad to see how they tied up the story overall, even if I may have been a little sad for one or two characters’ story lines. But it was also great to see Kansas City represented, with the amazing Don Cheadle and Paul Rudd! Amazing movie!

2. Tonight’s dinner was chicken pot pie. I love chicken pot pie, and I have an amazing recipe for it (adapted from Joanne Chang’s in Flour, Too). I don’t make it very often because it takes a lot of time and attention, something I don’t always have on a Sunday afternoon. But it was a quieter weekend, so I make chicken pot pie. Winner, winner, chicken dinner, plus more for Monday’s dinner. The ultimate in comfort food!

3. I am grateful for a lovely, relaxing weekend. It was a crazy week at work, and I needed to just catch my breath and remember the good things in life—a cat sleeping by your feet, a really good book, a cup of tea, love, friendship, clean sheets, and good food. It was a good weekend.

*what is making me happy this week

wimmhtw* 4.21

 1. It’s Easter! Happy Easter! We are postponing our family celebration this year because of flooding, so today was a low-key, relaxing weekend day, which has been greatly appreciated. 

 2. This week my favorite local bookstore is bringing to town one of my favorite writers, Ruth Reichl. We get to meet her, listen to her, and have her sign a copy of her newest book, and I am very excited about this event. (This may show up in next week’s list too.) 

 3. Last week I mentioned the Claritin D, for which I’m grateful during this allergy season. So for this week I am saying Mucinex, because it helps too! 

 

*what is making me happy this week

wimmhtw* 4.14

1. It was a rough week at work, so I’m just happy I survived. I survived the week and I am still breathing. Sometimes that’s enough.

2. We went to see Shazam today, which is a very funny movie. And since it’s been out for 2-3 weeks already, and it was an earlier showing, the theater was a little empty, which was wonderful. I love going to the movies when there’s hardly anyone around.

3. As it is once again the allergy season, I’m going to say Claritin D. I love to complain about it because it is far from perfect, but the truth is I’m not sure how I would make it through spring without it.

*what is making me happy this week

wimmhtw* 4.7

  1. We had an early birthday celebration for my mother today, a surprise party even, and it was good. She’s been dealing with some medical issues since last fall, so seeing her eat her favorite foods and have fun with friends and family was really great. 

 2. I got to spend yesterday hanging out with friends, with yarn and really good food, and lots of laughter. It was much needed and much appreciated.

 3. Again, I’m going to have to say Don. We’ve had him over a week now, and he is just a ball of energy, of goofiness, and of personality. He is adorable and cuddly and just as mellow as possible. He is the most amazing addition to our lives, and I am so grateful for him and for the time we get to spend with him. 

 

*what is making me happy this week

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wimmhtw* 3.31

1. Even though it snowed on Saturday morning (the ground was too warm for it to stick, thank goodness!), I feel like spring is really here. The temperatures are (mostly) up, lawns are turning green, and the sounds of birds fill the air, which make me happy also for reason #3.

2. I feel like the coldness inside me is breaking up as well. It’s been a rough nine or so months, and I feel like I buried myself deep inside my own head. But the depression is breaking up, like ice on a river, and while the anxiety is rough right now (it’s about struggling to breathe in spite of spring allergies), I feel myself more able to relax and laugh and have fun. I am very grateful for that.

3. And last, but certainly not least, is Don. My boyfriend saw Don on the website for a local animal shelter, and so we headed out last Tuesday night to meet him. We hung out with him for a while in their sun room, watching him watch the birds and play with balls. He was adorable. And Thursday night, we went back to adopt him furrever. I was worried about him on Friday because we both had to go to work, and there was a thunderstorm besides. I got home as soon as I could after work to check on him, and found him passed out on our bed upstairs, happily and comfortably sleeping through it all. We’ve had an amazing weekend with him, and I can’t wait to get to know him and his many meows better. He will never replace our Jesse, but his zest for life and for play is a beautiful reminder of how much love we still have to give.

*what is making me happy this week

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wimmhtw* 3.24

1. Things have been a little slower this week, so I’ve been able to get caught up on some things. I needed that. And I think it’s opening some space in my life for new opportunities. But I’m anxious about that, and I’m trying not to let my anxiety spin me out of control. It’s a struggle though, and I worry that my anxiety will keep me from taking part in these new opportunities if they pan out. So for now I’m trying to just take things one step at a time. And to breathe. Breathing is good.

2. I’ve been seeing commercials for Killing Eve season 2. Can’t wait!!

3. I did finally manage to finish my taxes, and I’ve already gotten my state refund. That made me happy.

*what is making me happy this week

wimmhtw* 3.17

1. HBO’s The Case Against Adnan Syed. I listened to the first season of Serial back in the day (who didn’t? There were millions of us discovering the power of podcasts), and now that I can see faces and hear the actual voices of the case, I am fascinated by it all over again. I can’t wait to see what else the documentary uncovers.

2. Finally (and I really hope I am not jinxing this), we have had a couple of solid weeks without snow or ice. The temperatures still dip into the 30s at night, sometimes even the 20s, and the wind can still have a bitter nip to it, but we have had no ice storms, no blizzards, no polar vortices. I’m hoping we can put these behind us for this season.

3. Another hint of warmer days ahead: we went to my favorite pie shop this weekend (we missed 3.14 pi day by a couple of days, but that’s maybe for the best since they ran out that day), and I got my favorite of all the pies: peach. It’s the best of the spring/summer pies, and I’m thrilled that I have a peach pie (missing a piece or two) waiting for me in my refrigerator.

*what is making me happy this week

wimmhtw* 3.10

1. I skipped this last week. There has been a lot going on, and I couldn’t deal with a computer last weekend, so I said nothing. But I was in many ways very grateful. My mother had surgery the Wednesday before last. We had known it was coming. She was getting treated for her condition for months before the surgery, to help make the surgery more successful. And it worked. Everything about the surgery was as good as it could be. Her surgeon was even able to do it laparoscopically, which we didn’t think would be possible. We were all very lucky, or blessed, depending on how you look at it, and that made me very happy. And more than a little exhausted, as many of the emotions I’d been holding in for months could finally break through. But still, happy. Happy and grateful.

2. And then a very sad thing happened. Last weekend, we lost our cat, the love of our lives. Jesse adopted my boyfriend Brad 15 years ago, and then (somewhat begrudgingly) adopted me when Brad and I started going out. I’d known cats before, but I grew up in a dog family. I’d never lived with a cat before, so I didn’t understand how very special it can be to be adopted by a cat. There are so many special moments that I will always carry with me, and his love expanded my heart in ways I will never be able to explain. I’m so sad that he’s gone, but I will always be grateful and cherish the time I got to spend with him. He will always be my first cat, and my best cat, and one of the great loves of my life.

3. It’s that time of year again—Cadbury Creme egg time. And while I love them for their own sweet tastiness, I also love them because they remind me of my grandmother. She had a sweet tooth until the end, and every Easter she had Cadbury eggs around. With the hint of warmer weather, lots of bunnies, and Cadbury eggs (and the sweet memories of my grandmother), the thought of Easter coming soon makes me very happy.

*what is making me happy this week

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wimmhtw* 2.24

1. 3 words. Girl Scout Cookies. I ordered a bunch of them from my cousin and went and picked them up today. I am a happy girl.

2. Taxes. I mean, I’m not saying I’m happy about taxes, but I am happy about how much easier they are now that we can do them online. It’s so much easier than having to dig through a bunch of forms and worry about postage and all. Now, it’s just a matter of clicking the right keys on the keyboard, and they’re done. I mean, mine aren’t yet, but hopefully soon. And it will be so much easier.

3. I have a boyfriend, and we have a cat. I love them both very much, but sometimes they smell. But Febreze is helping me with that. And not only have they invented an even stronger air freshener, they have also started offering a refill bottle for the fabric refresher. I think they understand how I live, and I am very grateful.

*what is making me happy this week

wimmhtw* 2.17

1. I skipped last week, all week, for the blogging because I did not feel at all good. It was partly the weather (the temperature had huge shifts, which always screws with my sinuses and doesn’t help the cat or my boyfriend, so we were all miserable), partly stress, and partly just that germarific time of year. So I took the week off. And now, the first thing that is making me happy this week is that I am feeling better. It may not last, but at least for now, for today, I am feeling better. That makes me very happy.

2. Real food. I have barely been cooking for months, but I’ve started getting back into it. Right now, there is a pot of homemade steak soup on the stove and a meatloaf in the oven. There will be good eating this week!

3. A friend suggested tonight on Facebook being pen pals, writing in real life. I do miss writing and reading real letters, and I have been looking for ways to build friendships. This seemed like the perfect solution for me. I may make the offer on the Facebook myself, to see who else of my friends are interested in giving it a shot.

*what is making me happy this week

wimmhtw* 2.3

1. I have been wanting to play around with stocks a little, but just a little. It hardly seemed worth it if I had pay a $5-10 trading fee each time, so I haven’t really done much. But one of my favorite podcasts started talking about a new app/website called Robinhood. It lets you buy and sell stock with no fees. Yes, I said it. No fees. So I have started playing, and I look forward to seeing if I’m any good at it at all. I anticipate losing money, but we’ll see. At least I feel like I’m in control. If you’re interested in giving it a shot, you can click here, and we’ll both get a free stock—you just for signing up and me for referring you.

2. The weather was brutal this week, with temperatures getting down in the single digits. People north of us had it way worse, so I’m not complaining too much, but it was rough. However, there was some bounce back, with the temperature today getting back up to 63. It’s not my idea for a February day (the temperature extremes are misery to my sinuses), but at least it happened on a Sunday, when we could enjoy it. We even got to let the cat out for a little bit this afternoon, not usually something we can do in February. The temperatures are heading back down this week, mostly 30s, but that is something I can deal with. Everything in moderation, especially the weather, is all I ask for. Although I’m willing to make an exception for a winning Powerball ticket.

3. It’s the SuperBowl, and while I don’t care all that much about the score (it’s the wrong football for my tastes), it is still fun to watch the commercials. Looking forward to the next Avengers movie. Love the idea of the M&Ms candy bar. Although it may be the Bud Light/Game of Thrones mashup that wins the night. Maybe. It’s only halftime now. There is still more to come . . .

*what is making me happy this week

wimmhtw* 1.27

1. We have been working hard to get things set up for this coming week. I am looking forward to a calm week. where we can hunker down at home and concentrate on relaxing and getting lots of sleep. I’m feeling the edges of bronchitis, and last week I kept hearing the woman two desks down from me and her horrendous cough. I don’t want that, so I am looking forward to a week where there is lots of soup in the kitchen and early bedtimes more nights than not.

2. There is a new season of Big Brother: Celebrity Edition, and it’s a wild mix of people—Joey Lawrence from Blossom, Jonathan Bennett from Cupcake Wars, Ryan Lochte from the stupid scandal at the Olympics, Kato Kaelin from O.J. Simpson’s guest house, Lindsay Lohan’s mom, The Mooch from Trump’s White House (briefly). We record it during the week and catch up on weekends. It’s a crazy mess, and this season is going to be so much fun! I can’t wait to see what happens next!

3. Tonight is the WWE Royal Rumble. My boyfriend is a big wrestling fan, and he’s brought me into this world, not always willingly. But the Rumble is my favorite of the pay-per-views, so for now I’m happy.

*what is making me happy this week

wimmhtw* 1.20

1. Thursday night, we didn’t feel too good. Neither one of us (my boyfriend and I) were feeling great, it had been a long week, and the weather was supposed to get bad later in the week. But we went ahead with our plans and saw author Brad Meltzer on his book tour for The First Conspiracy: The Secret Plot to Kill George Washington. I am so glad that we went! He was smart and funny and inspiring, and when he signed our book he made a point of shaking our hands and using our names. I am so glad that we went! I am so glad he came to town. If you get a chance to see him in person, grab it. He’s fantastic!

2. The huge snowstorm that was supposed to hit yesterday only dropped an inch or two to clean off the cars. I love a good snowstorm, but life is complicated right now, and I don’t need the extra stress. I was grateful to have a weekend without seven inches of snow to deal with.

3. As I type this, the Chiefs are playing the Patriots to see who will be going to the SuperBowl. I am not a huge Chiefs fan. I struggle to get passionate about professional football. But it’s great to see how this team has brought the city together, and how quarterback Patrick Mahomes has brought together the team in a new and exciting way. There are four minutes left, and while I definitely want the Chiefs to win, for the moment, I’m just grateful for how far they’ve come this year and for how much fun they’ve had along the way. It’s been a great ride, even for us barely fans.

*what is making me happy this week