May 22, 2013

What's Up Wednesday

What's Up Wednesday is a weekly meme, started by Jaime Morrow and Erin Funk, geared to help readers and writers touch base and let them know what's up. If you want join in, you can find the link widget on Jaime's and Erin's blogs!


{Peonies from my front yard!}



What I'm Reading
So much reading to do! Since I'm heading to San Francisco next weekend, I've been scouting out books to read on the long flight. So far, my list includes:
The Lucy Variations by Sara Zarr
The One and Only Ivan by Katherine Applegate (this recently won the Newbery)
Chantress by Amy Butler Greenfield (at the suggestion of my friend Jessica Spotswood)
And The Mountains Echoed by Khaled Hosseini
Let's Explore Diabates with Owls by David Sedaris
Inferno by Dan Brown
I figure those last two will be good airplane reading: fast-paced and entertaining. Win!

What I'm Writing
Chugging along on my YA space western! A few days ago, I sent out the first two chapters to a few trusted readers so my fingers are crossed that they like it. Here's to hoping anyway! Haha. 

What's Inspiring Me Right Now
I teared up at this Atlantic piece about the Oklahoma teachers who used their own bodies to shield their students from the recent tornado. That's real heroism right there. 

What Else I've Been Up To
Trying new recipes! Last week, I made mussels for the first time, using an Ina Garten recipe 'cause the Barefoot Contessa has never steered me wrong. I also tried out this scallion + creamed corn dish, which was divine. I actually made it last night too because it was so tasty—the tarragon added such a nice flavor and the diced anchovies (don't judge!) added an incredible depth. Plus, fresh corn is cheap and plentiful right now. Go forth and cook, I say!

So what have you been up to lately?

28 comments:

  1. Wow! That Oklahoma teachers piece is just incredible and heart-warming. It's always so great to hear about these stories in the midst of such horrible news.

    I should follow your lead and start trying out new recipes this summer. We've been in a food rut for forever now, so it's high time. Might have to check out some of these ones you mention. :-)

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    1. Let me know if you end up trying any of these recipes or if you have any recipes you'd like to share! With summer around the corner, I'd love to add more dishes to my limited cooking repertoire. Haha.

      And yes, isn't that article so inspiring? Those teachers must've been terrified too but they stuck by their students and were willing to give up their lives for them. So moving.

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  2. I love Ina Garten. I will never grow tired of watching The Barefoot Contessa. That creamed corn dish sounds amazing as well. Thanks for sharing the Oklahoma teacher article -- so inspiring.

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    1. Oh, yay, another Ina Garten fan! I've tried quite a few of her recipes and they have always turned out yummy!

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  3. David Sedaris is always a win. I need to pick his newest up. I need to read about someone whose family is much crazier than mine. It makes me feel better. Ivan is also on my list for this month. I bought it several weeks ago and am looking forward to it.
    Good luck on the writing...
    Just read that article and can barely see through the tears. We need to appreciate teachers more, starting with their salaries.

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    1. Haha, I love David Sedaris for the same reason! Whenever he starts talking about his family, I think to myself: "Wow, I guess my family is sort of sane?" Haha.

      And definitely let me know what you think about Ivan! I've heard such great things about it but I also heard that it's a tear-jerker too, which made me a tad reluctant to read it. If there is any sort of animal abuse in it, I might start sobbing!

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    2. Forgot to add: a huge YES on paying our teachers more money. These men and women work so hard to teach and care for our children, and yet we pay them in pennies. This needs to be remedied!

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  4. I love this concept! Will definitely be joining in. I haven't heard of any of those books! Will be adding to my TBR pile.

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    1. Oh, fun! I hope you join in next week and I'll be sure to hop on over to your blog!

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  5. YA Space western? That sounds awesome! I hope you get some good feedback and can't wait to hear more about this! I'm jealous of your sense of cooking adventure. I need to break away from my staple recipes. Happy Wednesday!

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    1. Thank you so much, Liz! Admittedly, the space western is giving me such a headache but I'm still very excited about the premise so hopefully I can crank out more words soon! What are you working on now?

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  6. Did you just say Space Western? SIGN ME UP FOR A COPY AS SOON AS IT IS PUBLISHED THANK YOU!

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    1. Ahhh, thank you! My fingers are tightly crossed that this one gets pubbed! I know the sci-fi market is a bit soft but I'll keep hoping anyway. :)

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  7. I love peonies. They were my favorite flower until my mom told me they attract ants. Then I told her never to clip some from her garden and bring them into my house. So now ranunculuses are my favorites. Also, space western? YES. Yes, please.

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    1. Ahhh, ants?! *Sprays peonies with bug repellant* Haha. Also, I adore ranunculuses! Does your mom grow them too? I wish I could find them more readily around here.

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  8. I have that new David Sedaris book, and I'm excited to read it...after I get through some library book. I dropped everything I was reading to read The 5th Wave because you and some other people were squeeing about it. TOTALLY WORTH IT. So glad your enthusiasm helped convince me to read. I loved it, and the wait for the next one is kind of excruciating, haha.

    Beautiful flowers, and can I come over for dinner some time? ;)

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    1. YAYYYY, so glad you enjoyed The Fifth Wave!!! It's such a page-turner, isn't it? I think I read the whole thing in 24 hours because I simply couldn't put it down. I'll definitely be on the lookout for the sequel next year!

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  9. Wow, that article about the teachers was amazing! And I love the peony picture. I can't wait until my peonies start blooming, but seeing as it only just turned green where I live, it'll be a while yet. Hope your CPs have great things to say about your space western!

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    1. Yay for peonies! I'm always so excited when they start blooming--I only wish that they had a longer season! They're so pretty to look at.

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  10. Your peonies look gorgeous! *grabby hands*

    Good luck with your western! Can't wait to hear more about it.

    Off to read that Atlantic article...I'm inspired already.

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    1. Aw, thanks so much, Ghenet! I don't know what it is but I adore having fresh flowers in the house. It makes me so happy to look at them!

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  11. Zomg that corn dish looks so good...Must. Go. Try. Thanks for sharing!

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    1. Ohhhh, if you make it let me know how it goes! I really, really love it and plan on including it in my regular cooking rotation. Plus, it's pretty easy to make too!

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  12. I love peonies! This photo is super gorgeous, Caroline!

    I loved both CHANTRESS and THE LUCY VARIATIONS, and Steve & I are listening to the new Sedaris. We're only on ch 10 but it's hilarious!

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    1. Oh, I can't wait to read the new Sedaris book then! And I perused the sample pages of Chantress online because you raved about it, and I'm very intrigued!

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  13. Oh, yay for San Francisco!! Let me know if you need any recs or anything! Can't wait to hear what you do!

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    1. I'm so excited! I haven't been to SF for years, and I really love that city! I'll be visiting two friends of mine who just had babies so I imagine we'll be doing lots of baby-friendly things, although we are planning a beach outing one day. Do you have any favorite beaches in the area?

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  14. Those recipes both sound so good! I've come to enjoy cooking the past couple years, but it's the end of the month so I'm living off of peanut butter sandwiches and mac & cheese at the moment...

    I love San Francisco! If I were ever to leave Seattle (haha) I would want to live there. I haven't been in about ten years now, and I really hope to go back there to visit sooner rather than later!

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