Five for Friday.

Five things I have on my mind today:

1. I don’t care how old the cover is, or how long it’s been since Chris Cornell fronted a band or released a single, I am still madly in love with his rendition of Billie Jean. I would listen to that man sing the phone book. Seriously. (His cover of Seven Nation Army isn’t bad, either, but doesn’t quite hit this drool-worthy level.) Want to cheer up your Friday morning? Go take a listen over here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=R0uWF-37DAM

2. Football is back! I kinda sorta was instructed to start a football pool at ThePlaceThatISwearDoesn’tExist, and we had a good number of takers. Getting all the last minute picks in yesterday and organizing all the logistics made it feel a bit like Christmas, not gonna lie. And not that I wanted the Seahawks to do well last night – the Pats were the last team to repeat, and if we can’t get another flippin’ ring, I’d like to at least hold on to that distinction – at least my picks remain perfect. Don’t worry, they won’t stay that way for long – I chose Raiders over Jets. Yeah.

3. I finished M.R. Carey’s The Girl with All the Gifts earlier this week. What a weird reading experience. I started off hating the book because the narration bugged. It was like the book was narrated by the kid from Room – I hate books narrated in a stilted fashion by wee young children. The gimmick has had its day and now I am SO over it. But then the voice grew up a bit as we learned more about the main character, Melanie, and then I started feeling a little intrigued, and I heard there was a wicked ending and…there was. By the time I finished it, I was so impressed with the character development Melanie went through, the drawing of the villain, and the plot-perfect ending that I was rather impressed. Enough to give the book 4 of 5 stars, even. I should warn you – it’s a zombie story. But really, it’s a love story. And not the kind you’re thinking about, either.

4. I’m currently reading Mary Doria Russell’s The Sparrow, and I have to say, I was a little intimidated. It’s a sci-fi book about a group of Jesuits. See?! I picked it up for a September read-along, and while I’m only 130 pages in, I’m already intrigued. It doesn’t have what I would describe as a “gripping” writing style, and the flippity time-hopping is kinda frustrating, but I like that you know some things before they back-fill the characters, and I’m completely drawn in by the mystery. That and the question of faith – in oneself and one’s life and the quests one chooses to fill it with more than in a spiritual sense. As I was flailing through my run last night and thought how it’s going to be impossible for me to get up to 13 miles by March, I wondered if maybe this book hasn’t fallen into my hands for a reason. Yes, so I’ll have a little faith in my training program – I’m that narcissistic!

5. C’mon, fall! I know – I’m joining a mighty big chorus. Everyone everywhere seems to be rushing fall along. “Hey, it’s September – be Fall already!” I was mildly amused with everyone until football came on and I caught the fever. I want cooler temps! (It was 100° last night while I was running.) I want fall foods! I want to not hear the a/c click on every 5 minutes! To hurry it along (and I know this will totally work), I wore a nice, deep, autumn red shirt under a dark brown button-up shirt (okay, short-sleeved shirt), and pulled my brown corduroy flats out of storage. Yes, my magic clothes are going to control the seasons. You’re all jealous of my superpowers, aren’t you?

and one bonus Thing:

6. My girls have the awesomest Stepmom in the whole world. Seriously. Today the girls begin a year of Fridays car-riders – their After-School program only runs Monday-Thursday, and rather than have the girls keep attending our daycare that we’ve become less and less happy with, Stepmom volunteered to keep the car on Fridays, use her lunch hour to pick up the girls from school, and let them run amok at their house while she works from home. It saves me a little bit of money and saves us all a lot of heartache dealing with a daycare that doesn’t monitor the kids the way we’d like. The girls were seeing some really ridiculous behavior and the teachers were less than on top of things. All the points go to Stepmom for providing a solution! We’re pretty lucky and I am so grateful to her!

There you go! Now we just have to get through the work day and enjoy a nice lazy weekend ahead of us. Godspeed, folks.

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