snappeI was never a fan of Professor Snape. Never trusted him. But Alan Rickman. Well I always loved him. Beloved actor. Kind face. Excellent baddie. There are some celebrities that pass away that break my heart. This is one of those times. I don’t know if I am so bothered because of all the other negative things that I have going on or if it really is just because he was so much a part of my life growing up. Because you see, yes Alan Rickman was in many, many movies that I love but from the age of 11 until now (18 years if you are counting) he was Professor Snape. Harry Potter took me far away from Scranton. Transported me to England. Made me a witch. Gave me a whole different world to hide in when things were to much in my life. They are books and movies that I turn to in the darkest of times. I think that’s why this hurts me so much. Because it’s like I’m losing a teacher. Ha. Now that I sound crazy here here is a post from the Bloggess. She gets me. “I Can’t”

A little montage from CNN on some of his more famous movies. CNN

Dear Alan, “Remember Hogwarts will always be there to welcome you home.” (J.K. Rowling) -Katie, a big fan


Checking in.

It seems as soon as I said that I would recap my heart surgery I wanted to stop writing this blog again. See I want to write it all down but Mr. E was a large part of that recovery and I know I can’t leave him out of the posts but dredging up his taking care of me and having to focus on the end of the relationship is hard. So I am going to table that post for when I’m not so #emotional.


Tea for my raw throat

13 days into the New Year I haven’t done anything all that exciting. Mostly my life has revolved around eating (I cook ALL THE TIME) work. Whole30 is going really well. I’ve eaten out once and I was very careful and ordered the safest things on the menu that I could find.  I’ve also eaten at friends houses and they have been really wonderful about letting me be a pain in the butt and say I can’t have this, this and that. #luckygirl I haven’t felt any of the magical changes that Whole30 promises BUT my size 16 jeans (from Old Navy) are currently on me. I’ve missed skinny jeans so on Sunday when I could get these on I was thrilled. I knew my weight gain was out of control when I started wearing boot cut jeans. Also, don’t get me wrong. The jeans are tight BUT I can sit and and cross my legs. That’s enough for me! 🙂


Chorizo nachos. Holy moly!

I’ve been eating a TON of veggies, meat and fats on this diet. It’s been a lot of fun to just drop a hunk of Ghee or coconut butter in the pan and not have to put the skillet on the scale and make sure that I’m only having 6 grams at a time. It’s also been fun to have more then 3 ounces of protein at a time. I will say that I am missing cheese and rice a lot. And my weekly (or 3x’s a week) sushi visits are missed. #thestruggle


Typhoid CB

I started the new year with a cold that was given to me by my most favorite baby CB. He is the love of my life. And sick or not I needed to kiss his cheeks. A decision I regret after the week I spent sick as a dog. But I’d probably do that same things again. 😉

Have you seen Casablanca?! I’m sure you have. Everyone has seen the movie except me. The problem was I’m a hopeless romantic who needs  a happy ending. My life is tragic enough without adding depressing endings to the mix. Anyway, I finally saw it and I was on the edge of my seat. Wonderful movie. I want to watch it again and see what I missed. #somuchgoingon #Mustnotpee I also almost cried at one point. There is something about patriotism that brings tear to me eye.


Road trip to see the brother.

Last night I went to a friends house for dinner and she made a magical salad and venison stew. All whole30 approved AND I made a knitter! 🙂 Really she knew how to knit and needed an update BUT I still get her started and I’m excited to teach her how to purl next. I love hoisting my hobby on people. Although, teaching is not something I’m great at.

Thanks for listening. Maybe I’ll do something fun with interesting pictures soon. For now it’s windy and cold and I want to curl up with a book.image

Road trip to discover oxygen.

A few weekends ago Mr. E asked if I wanted to head to a historic site on a Sunday afternoon. Well truth be told it was my first day off in two weeks and I was tired and grumpy and I really didn’t want to. But he sounded earnest and I’m a sucker for making him happy so on this Sunday afternoon I found myself heading for Northumberland and the Joseph Priestly House.


Joseph Priestly was born during in 1733 and did not move to the United States until the 1790’s. He was a theologian, scientist, outdoors-men, teacher and an all around well educated gentleman of the 18th century. He spent most of his life in England and didn’t move to the United States until his teaching on religion got him in a bit of trouble. After having his home and laboratory burned down in the Priestly Riots he fled to London and his 3 sons went to the states to see about purchasing land. They picked Northumberland, PA . Priestly’s wife designed her dream house overlooking the Susquehanna River (although sadly she passed away before the house was completed) and he moved in. Priestly sent the final decade of his life in the home. Dying in the study that he spent much of his time in.

Priestly made many important discoveries including oxygen (and a few other elements), the first Unitarian Church in the United States, he taught students in his home (and was an early proponent of taking them outdoors), among many other important things.

That all being said I went because I love a good house tour. I really couldn’t give a single hoot about science. As 18th century homes go this was a great home. It was big and stately in the English style with lovely view and a great staircase.

This is Priestly's microscope which was pretty awesome to see.

This is Priestly’s microscope which was pretty awesome to see.


The study/library where he eventually passed away.

The study/library where he eventually passed away.

Priestly himself.

Priestly himself.


An out building built by Penn State in the early 20th century. They used the site for outreach courses at Penn State.

An out building built by Penn State in the early 20th century. They used the site for outreach courses at Penn State.

I'm a sucker for an awesome English style door.

I’m a sucker for an awesome English style door.

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Even though I didn’t want to go it was a BEAUTIFUL day. I always enjoy spending afternoons with Mr. E. He doesn’t need to know how lazy I am. The house sadly is showing the decline of museums. The Pennsylvania Historical and Museum Commission turned the house over to the Friends Group and it is showing that. There is only one bedroom furnished and it is Priestly’s daughter in laws room. They didn’t have HIS bedroom on display. The volunteer tour guides also were complaining about the site and way it is run while Mr. E and I were touring (unprofessional much?!). Looks like the house could use a little life blown into it and I hope that happens before it becomes another of the properties that is lost due to funding.

Book Review: The Glass Magician

glass magician

Remember when I did the book review on the Paper Magician ? Well sometime around Christmas I was cruising along on Amazon and I noticed the sequel had come out. I hit the buy it now button and purchased The Glass Magician. The book was $4.99 at the time and since I had enjoyed the first one and was curious about what was going to happen in the second. And then I sat on it for 2 months without reading it.

When I finally sat down to read I rejoined Ceony at her place at the Magician Thane’s home. The book takes Ceony in another adventure where she makes some foolish decisions which remind you that she is still a young heroine. The book also focuses on the fact that she is in love with her mentor and in the book we don’t if he returns the feeling.

In this story Ceony must stand up against Grath a glass magician who is trying to reopen what happened between Ceony and Lira in the previous book. Luckily she has a new friend (Delilah) to help her out. We also meet back up with Ceony’s beloved paper dog and some of the head magicians in England. Some of whom are a little concerned about what is going on at Magician Thane’s house.

I did not enjoy this book as much as the first because I felt that Ceony in one paragraph was ready to face her adult problems and in the next was acting like a petulant child.  However I am curious to see what happens and am pre-ordering the final book (The Master Magician) in the trilogy which will be coming out in June.

I give this ** 1/2 stars (out of 4).

Have you read anything fun lately?

Grandpa’s Cheesebarn.

I have been going to visit my Mom’s family in Ohio my entire life. And for all the years I’ve been going we have driven past a sign advertising Grandpa’s Cheesebarn but when we are on the way to Vandalia we don’t want to stop and on the way home we come through this particular part of Ohio around 8 am. So they aren’t open. Well the Brother had a job interview in Mansfield, Ohio and we drove past the Cheesebarn again and this time we decided we were going to stop.DSC_9064 DSC_9066 DSC_9079

To say that we weren’t disappointed would be putting it lightly! SO MUCH CHEESE and there was chocolate shop. To say that I gave them ALL my money would be putting it lightly.

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There was something wildly charming about the kind staff, lovely food, whimsy decorations, cafe menu and the wonderful old fashioned register. I am sad that the 84 year old Grandpa (who still runs the show) wasn’t there the day we were. He was at the second location.DSC_9073 DSC_9071 DSC_9076 DSC_9077 DSC_9078

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On the way to Mansfield The Brother and I met one of my Weight Watcher friends. Ms. Pokey is pretty spectacular and it was such fun to catch up with her and have some Cracker Barrel. I may have gotten a 70% off purse because shopping.

As always the Brother and I had a great roadtrip even if the weather wasn’t great on the way home.

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Links for the week of 3.1.2015

This week has been a whirlwind. The Brother and I went to Ohio and ended up getting stuck on Route 80 for an extra night due to a snowstorm. I did get to see a dear friend and I got a lot of knitting done. However I am so tired that I’ve been in bed and asleep before 10 pm every night since we’ve been home. (This carless, almost 30 year old has no life!!)

Some links that I put together (while I was awake):

Did you wake up last week confused about the dress that was taking the internet by storm? I did. Well the South African Salvation Army took that and make an ad campaign and shed new light on the idea of black and blue! Powerful image. See it here. 

Do you like Girl Scout cookies? (Who doesn’t!?) Well there are 2 different factories and the cookies are a little different? Have you noticed? Read the article from the LA Times Here.

Terminally ill patients were taken to visit an exhibit of Rembrandt paintings in the Netherlands. The idea seems similar to Make A Wish but it is an ambulance. It’s both a sad and uplifting story. Check it out here.

As I’m sure you’ve noticed I love all things UK (except for St. Patrick’s Day and the Fourth of July then I like the British A LOT less.) ANYWAY, here is a look at some of the lovely food you can get in the UK. Enjoy it here.

Some pictures from The Samsung (which had an update and is not doing to hot this week):


This cat is the best cat around.


I asked Tara to pick up a veggie for dinner. She (clearly) needs for direction then that. She brought asparagus, cauliflower, broccoli, mushrooms, green beans, carrots and zucchini. It was very exciting for me.


Going to a cheesebarn and homemade chocolate shed this week was … yummy. But my jeans don’t fit now. #worthit

What are you listening to? I’ve been listening to The Sound of Music soundtrack. Can you imagine that the movie premiered 50 years ago? In my top 5 favorite movies! I will always cry at the end when Edelweiss is sung.

The Pearl Buck House

The week after Christmas I went to Quakertown to meet Mr. E’s parents. I was both terrified (meeting the parents seems like such a big deal) and also a bit relieved. I figured if they didn’t like me it was better to find out a few months in. Anyway I am not someone who drives an hour and a half in the car without going to a museum, gallery, historic house, something. So when I out to dinner with a dear friend (who happens to be a curator) she recommended the Pearl Buck House. I had never heard of the place but she said that they would be decorated for Christmas and had nice tours. After much consulting with Mr. E we decided to go in the morning and take a tour. I pulled out my SLR (who was feeling so neglected) and had a grand old time.


Pearl Buck has an interesting life story. She lived much of her youth in China and that influence was seen throughout her home. She also believed in mixed race adoptions (both in practice and her personal life). Many, many children lived in her farm house. She also had a daughter who had something that we now know as PKU which is a protein allergy (for lack of a more medical explanation). The only reason I had heard of this is because a dear friend of mine has a daughter living a wonderful life with PKU (the kids Mom is a museum educator. Kid is living the dream! haha). Pearl’s daughter was institutionalized from a very young age and spent the rest of her life there.

Anyway the tour was really interesting. The guide showed us a lot of the things Pearl did so the house was kid friendly and you could see the Asian influence throughout the house. They also do a festival of trees and we got to see those as well!

Would you believe that I didn’t take a SINGLE selfie with Mr. E? He isn’t into pictures and social media like I am (in that he has a rather aggressive hatred towards it) so when we’re together I forget. *sigh*

After the jump check out some pictures.

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