After enjoying the 75º temperatures on Saturday and taking a leisurely bike ride around my neighborhood, Oklahoma has experienced it’s share of winter’s wrath this week.
Even though the sleet and snow didn’t blast into town until early Tuesday morning, the University made the decision to close campus for Tuesday late Monday afternoon. Each day since then I am filled with little bursts of happiness when I’ve received campus-wide alerts stating how the University will be closed the next day…and the next…and the next. Since I am quite the homebody this indoor exile has given me a chance to play Pioneer Woman (à la Laura Ingalls Wilder), wear my pajamas most of the day, and be creative with meals prepared at home.
Turkey burger (a first), sweet potato fries, and a side salad.
The result of being snowbound equals saving money, but I have a feeling this will only balance out the cost of my forthcoming electric bill. Yet, it sure beats the alternative, which I have experienced in snow storms past. No heat in the winter = NO fun.
Other recent wintry days have resulted in me trying my hand at a few new recipes and projects. Thanks to my kind parents, I received a springform pan for Christmas (and a microplane grater – hurrah for kitchen accouterments!). Last month I made my first bona fide cheesecake (chocolate chip with Oreo crust) as I hosted a dinner party (another first) for our January installment of book club. It went over with flying colors!
After my kindred-spirited friend Megan taught me how to crochet during our sophomore year in college, my post college yarn years have been more devoted to knitting and learning the necessary pattern abbreviations to slowly master this art. However, two of my fiber friends recently crocheted these cute market bags made from cotton yarn. With a little guidance from them on how to execute the pattern, I picked up my crochet hook, did a little modification to the handle and overall size, and here’s what I came up with:
I’ve made two of these from colorful Valentinesy, cotton yarn, one of which I actually kept for my personal use (a rarity) and shopping pleasure. It has accompanied me on my two most recent Wal-Mart trips and has served as a fun conversation topic between me and the person checking out my groceries. Plus it’s eco-friendly! No more of those annoying skinny plastic produce bags that are difficult to open without licking your fingers first, and after pushing the shopping cart around Wal-Mart without gloves on, you never know what germs are crawling on your fingers from said cart. I am therefore all the more thankful my bananas and onions can happily coexist in their new cotton, germfree home.
The new year has also brought along some new exposures to books, music, TV, and movies. I have namely enjoyed:
– The Girl With the Dragon Tattoo and The Girl Who Played with Fire by Stieg Larsson
– It’s a Book by Lane Smith (my new favorite tongue in cheek children’s book)
– The Guy I’m Not Dating by Trish Perry (fun recommendation from Addie I found at our church library)
– Doo-Wops & Hooligans by Bruno Mars
– Downton Abbey on PBS Masterpiece
– The Closer Season 1
– The King’s Speech (so heartwarmingly good)
I have also sought out a practical Biblical constancy to carry in my mind and spirit each week:
– “excel in the grace of giving” (2 Corinthians 8:7)
– understanding what it looks like to carve islands in my day of spending time with the Lord (John 10:10)
– asking myself if I have “longed for things we’d never really need” – from Fireflies and Songs by Sara Groves
– learning the difference between form and function in my walk with Christ (example: prayer (function) — bowing your head and closing your eyes while praying (form). There is nothing sacred about the form. Liberating, no?)
– “For the Spirit of God has made me, and the breath of the Almighty gives me life.” (Job 33:4 NLT)
Additionally, I have felt the Lord leading me to pursue church membership at First Baptist here in town and will make this decision official on Sunday. I feel like my recent contributions to the church choir, library committee, and hopefully an upcoming mission trip abroad are only the first of many opportunities I will have to be about my Father’s business among a local church body.
As it looks right now, my snow-cation will cease on Monday, which means I’ll put away my Pioneer Woman bonnet, change out of my jammies, and wear my librarian clothes to work instead.