Can’t Stop Won’t Stop

These are the tunes I have on repeat right now.

You may recognize Rhiannon Giddens from Carolina Chocolate Drops. Cannot resist that voice. She’s originally from Greensboro.

Moon Taxi hails from Nashville.

You’ve probably heard of Steep Canyon Rangers who are out of Brevard. They’ve been around awhile and gained a lot of fame playing with Steve Martin. I’m going through a phase where¬†they seem to be playing all the time.

These are a Few of My Favorite Things!

The weather this past weekend has been downright freezing. It was actual winter status. Not puny Central Texas winter but highs around 40, lows near freezing, cold rains and winds that wouldn’t die down. That’s pretty legit. There was no snow (let’s get serious) but it still qualifies as pretty chilly. As a result, I spent almost the entire weekend indoors. This may be the worst of winter here, so I took full advantage and did almost all of my favorite winter things!

  • Wore my pajamas almost nonstop- I took a couple breaks to run errands and most importantly to see Hunger Games: Catching Fire! Definitely worth taking a shower and putting on real clothes for.
  • Watched way more movies and TV than normal. The highlights include In The Loop, Fried Green Tomatoes, Semper Fi and Skyfall. Check out Semper Fi: Always Faithful. It’s about the contaminated water at Camp Lejeune in North Carolina. Very disturbing and very powerful documentary.
  • Drank hot tea all day until it was time to switch to red wine.
  • Crafted! Everyone I know, please prepare yourself for homemade gifts. I spent hours painting, sanding, knitting and experimenting. I’d tell you more about it but the recipients of these gifts will probably look at this post. More later. Also, crafting goes hand in hand with excessive time on Pinterest. You probably already knew that.
  • Cleaned. I thought the Alaskan boy’s mom was coming to town so I did a ton of laundry and cleaning. I know this should not be on my list of favorite things but the satisfaction I feel when I look at my finally cleaned fan blades is pretty fantastic right now.
  • And the highlight? I took a bubble bath and read my book. I’m almost finished with Beach Music by Pat Conroy! It took me a while to get into it but it’s definitely got my attention right now.

I know most people are experiencing really harsh winter conditions right now. I hope if you are, you’re able to stay warm and dry. Sometimes I forget but I am thankful for Texas winters. Hope you had a great weekend too!

Do You Love Books? No, Like Really Love Books?

Sometimes I need a reminder that I really love books. That may seem ridiculous but in a world where with sites like Pinterest and Netflix, I get distracted. Sometimes I forget that I’m midway through Beach Music by Pat Conroy right now because when I got home from work and my mind was totally dead I opened a beer and my laptop so I could zone out to Orange is the New Black.¬†Damn you sexy dark comedies! (Don’t deny your crush on Laura Prepon’s character Alex.) But next week comes one of the those much needed reminders- the Texas Book Festival! The Texas Book Festival is a two day festival celebrating literature. There’s opportunities to listen to authors read, get books signed, see cooking demonstrations and listen to great local music!

Since I moved to Austin I’ve wanted to volunteer with the Festival. This year I am! You can help out too! Volunteers are still needed. Just check out the Texas Book Festival’s volunteer page.

If you like your literature with excitement… and beer, check out the LitCrawl. The LitCrawl puts authors in more relaxed, intimate situations such as doing readings at local bars around Austin. But they do even more than that by hosting things like Nerd Jeopardy or Sexist Bingo with authors participating in these as well. My first year in Austin I saw Chuck Palahniuk! Maybe you’ll want to relive your childhood and listen to R.L. Stine do a reading in a graveyard. (Not my childhood. I was so scared of Goosebumps that I had to sit in the hallway during classroom reading time.) Pretty cool!

So do you love books? Like, really love books? Then you probably need to check it out.

So many books... Where to start?

So many books… Where to start?

Oldies Night? Be Still My Heart.

Growing up ever Sunday night my dad set up the grill in the backyard. He and my mom cracked open ice cold beers. The oldies station got cranked up all the way (thank you Oldies 93.1, R.I.P) for the Sunday night beach music. (If you’re not familiar with beach music visit the Carolinas and learn to shag– that’s dancing, by the way. Someone’s mind is the gutter, geez. Prime examples are The Tams or General Johnson and the Chairman of the Board.) These memories are golden to me. It was a night when everyone felt happy to be together no matter what was going on.

Sunday night was only the best of the seven nights a week we listened to the Oldies station. I didn’t know there was other music until I was exposed to Alanis Morsette and the Spice Girls in the fifth grade. As a result my love for Oldies runs deep.

This is where my Thursday night experience at Barbarella’s comes in. This is my new fave spot for Thursdays. Nothing gets me like smoke machines, liquor, sweaty crazy dancin’ folk and non-stop music from the 50s, 60s, and 70s. Thank you Barbarella’s, that was well worth the bicycle injury I suffered to get there. I’ll be seeing you again.