This year we hosted a Jolabokaflod party, and it will be the genesis for future traditions!

We put together a brunch, invited friends, and gave them the rules:

  • bring an anonymously wrapped book
  • the book must be something you loved yourself, or that you feel more people need to know about
  • We’ll all take a number
  • Lowest number goes first and chooses a book
  • Subsequent numbers can either ‘steal’ a previously unwrapped book, or choose a new one
  • Books can only be swapped three times

It was fabulous!

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Mabon Musings

I’m spending Mabon literally in the middle of an orchard. I’m in Italy and all around me they are harvesting apples and pears (the peaches were last week, melons the week before). The house we are staying in is 100s of years old and has been in the same family all of that time. There is a pomegranate tree in the garden, and I’m delighted to see one ‘in the wild’ because it’s so entirely new for me. When we aren’t cooking for ourselves, my husband and I venture uot to one of many local places where we are often the only Americans, if not the only ones speaking something other than Italian. We do our best to expand our vocabulary and laugh when they switch to English because we just aren’t very good at it.

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How I’m Packing for 3 Weeks in Italy

One of our ‘rules’ is that getting to a foreign country is so expensive that we want to stay there as long as possible.  Another rule is that we each pack only a piece of luggage small enough to carry on, and a personal bag. Yet another rule is that we do our best to dress like locals. This means we have to get creative about what — and how — we pack.

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July Update at Facing North

“Summer, after all, is a time when wonderful things can happen to quiet people. For those few months, you’re not required to be who everyone thinks you are, and that cut-grass smell in the air and the chance to dive into the deep end of a pool give you a courage you don’t have the rest of the year. You can be grateful and easy, with no eyes on you, and no past. Summer just opens the door and lets you out.”
~Deb Caletti, Honey, Baby, Sweetheart

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Foul Weather Friends

Everyone knows the phrase ‘fair weather friend’ — the ‘friend’ who is only around and interested in you when when circumstances are pleasant or profitable. If the going gets tough or tricky, they just completely disappear. Not many consider that the opposite type is also possible.

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