3 Wedding Traditions Single People Absolutely Hate

Weddings get on my nerves!Don’t disregard my opinion because I’m divorced, currently unwed, and over 35. To be clear, none of these things have anything to do with how I feel about weddings and hey, I actually planned one before.I’ve attended a LOT of weddings and, for the most part, they are all the same. Sure, some couples add culturally diverse touches, try a few of the new, trendy ideas, or buck one or two of the “traditions”, but most weddings follow the same rules and procession.That. Is. Borrrrring....more
There is a question worse than "So when are you getting married?" Asking the lucky couple when ... more

Paint It Black - What a Difference a Door Color Makes

We recently started working on our front entrance by replacing our ugly uninspiring light fixture with a DIY chandelier made with coffee filters, something that reflects us both very well as we both love some fine brewed java. Next on the dusty to-do list was painting the front door which we wanted to scream glam, so inspired by our trip to Paris we painted it black and white, similar to the style of the famous French fashion designer Coco Channel....more
Pretty!   Now please tell me that "glass" is actually a shatterproof material. Otherwise, any ... more

'Sriracha’ the Documentary: A Tribute to the Spicy Condiment

Editor’s note: There’s no doubt that Sriracha has an ardent band of hard-core fans, and Morgan from I Eat Grass is one of them. She loves the spicy condiment so much, in fact, that she named her cat after it. Morgan also stumbled upon a Kickstarter campaign for a documentary about Sriracha. Read on to find out more about the filmmaker and his celluloid tribute to the sauce we all love. --Jane ...more
Uh, this might be news to some people, but you don't have to be vegan to love Sriracha. Even ... more

An Annual Pap Test Saved My Life

This post may save your life. After skipping the dreaded pap exam one year, Northern Belle Diaries returned to her OB/GYN only to find out that she tested positive for the HPV virus, and she needed to have part of her cervix removed in order to treat the High-Grade CIN, or severe dysplasia which threatened to become cervical cancer. After remaining silent in the years following her LEEP, she has stepped forward to talk about the experience in the hope that other women will go for their annual pap smear so they don't develop cervical cancer. ...more
Thanks for the tip, but current CDC, ACOG, *and* NIH guidelines are every 3 years if you have a ... more

Considering What Unites Us

While I read Alex George's A Good American I thought a lot about what it means to belong -- to a church, a town, a country, a family. Frederick didn't belong to Jette's social strata, so they had to leave their homeland in order to be together. When they reach America, they do not end up in the town they intended to settle in, but they put down roots there....more
I live in Las Vegas. The majority of Las Vegans are transplants from other parts of the country ... more

She Wore Red

It often lay there, at the bottom of the special little pocket in Her purse, buried beneath the less cheeky colors. She shied away from this particular color, it always made too much of a statement. The other colors dressed her in subtlety - no flash, nothing to draw attention...safe and unseen. ...more
That is some fine writing. more

The Redemptive Power of Song

We've discussed how music plays a big role in Alex George's A Good American when we talked about how he described Jette's life as an opera. It's more than that the family just liked music, it was woven into the fabric of their lives. It was what they used to learn about themselves and about life. ...more
What song? Singular? Oh no no no. I have an entire playlist simply called "Get up." I think it's ... more

Is Your Life an Opera?

In Alex George's A Good American music is important to the lives of the characters and is integral to the plot. Jette and Frederick meet when he serenades her in a park. They find help in New Orleans from someone that Frederick met through music. This same man will come back into their lives and greatly impact their future. Frederick and Jette's sons and grandsons are all singers....more
Mine is a collection of piano sonatas. more

Can We End Bullying? Interview with “Sticks and Stones” Author Emily Bazelon

With a ten-year-old son who’s going to start middle school next fall, the topic of teen bullying scares me to death. Slate Senior Editor Emily Bazelon is also the mother of two boys, aged 10 and 13, and her new book Sticks and Stones: Defeating the Culture of Bullying and Rediscovering the Power of Charcter and Empathy covers her years of research into teen bullying and what can be done about it. Image Credit: Random House...more
I think it is also important for the adults in school to establish early and often that "We ... more

Gastronomic Mosaics & Culinary Road Maps

Food quickly becomes important to the story in Alex George's A Good American. Before the Meisenheimers ever open the restaurant, Jette finds herself homesick. She turns to the meals she ate in her homeland for comfort. She didn't have recipes passed down from her mother or even a cookbook to turn to. Through a process of trial and error, she made her way through the food in memories until they existed on her table. ...more
Lasagne. I don't even make it -- way too time consuming -- but yeah that's a food-of-childhood ... more