Wine Slushie Recipe and Monday Miscellany

Last week was a rough week. It was a week of memories, reflecting, and trying to make sense of why the world can suck so bad. I came up with no more answers than when I began reflecting…but what I did realize is that I am far more capable and courageous than I ever imagined.

Life is a bitch, yo.

One amazing thing that eases the pain of loss and life difficulty is being around people you love. We loaded up and headed three blocks down to Cornell street, where our most favorite people reside: The Perkins.

We played and talked and ate and drank. Our kids jumped in the pool with clothes on as the sun sank into the horizon. Our toddlers waddled around shrieking and growling in their unique Brown+Perkins pitches.

We sat on Sadie’s beautiful new wrap around front porch and laughed at the neighbors and their bizarro lawn decorations. Pie plates do not decorations make? “Are they there to frighten Magpies?” “But I thought Magpies like shiny things?” We craned our neck when two cop cars rolled up and spent almost an hour in another neighbor’s house. We giggled at the Frankenstein Honda and the chubby kid playing detective.  Rusty wrangled babies and impressed with his cell phone technology skillz. Garrett chuffed with jealousy. Both men wrangled babies. While Sadie and I galavanted to the kitchen to prepare libations.

There wasn’t a lot of topical discussion. It was just random laughter hemmed into moments of silent sitting. It is the kind of experience you have around people your soul is truly comfortable with.  You don’t have to “talk” you can just be.

Sadie had the idea to make wine slushies. She, in Sadie fashion, didn’t ACTUALLY have a real plan… so I brought in some structure, in Jasmine fashion, and executed her plan. What our evil geniuses yielded was the most delectable slushies. You want to try these. NAY! You NEED to try these!

 

 

Riesling Berry Slushies

1 Bottle Barefoot Riesling (or your favorite white wine)

1/2 c. Raspberries

1/2 c. Strawberries

2 c. Blueberries

1 c. crushed ice

1/4 c. simple syrup

Lime Zest

 

Blend until smooth and get drunk  enjoy!

 

Happy Monday Dear Readers!!

 

 

Saying Goodbye to Sadie

When Sadie and I started this blog, I knew what I was getting into, but she didn’t. I told her, ” I am going to be a writer, I am going to blog and write a book, I am going to work in social media and create a career that works the way I want it.” Sadie has learned that when I say I am going to do something, I really do it. We wanted a way to chronicle our hilarious antics, our experience as friends, and a place to make fun of people.We do that a lot- make fun of people… but the people we make fun of are mostly each other ;) mostly.

When our blog took off and began to take on a life of its own I ran with it…and Sadie… she sat down and hyperventilated. I felt empowered by putting what I was experiencing out there and Sadie felt utterly naked and vulnerable. One of the ways that our friendship has always worked is that I find the words and say them aloud while Sadie flaps her hands. I don’t say this with derision- it just is who we are. I love this characteristic about Sadie and about us. During the life of our blog we have experienced marriages that have had to be given mouth to mouth, depression, anxiety, postpartum depression/psychosis, life, death, and all the talking points in between.

So now I am moving toward working in social media, I am a writer, and I am working on my book (surprise!!).

And Sadie?

Well… Sadie is one of those people I talked about in this blog post. She is someone who still in the jungle… trying to figure out how to gain her footing and tangled in vines.

She is on her journey.

She is not ready to tell her story.

She may never be able to publicly tell her story.

So TheBrokins.com is saying goodbye to Sadie as co-author. TheBrokins.com will become mine alone. 

When Sadie and I started talking about where she was at with the blog I already knew where she was at. Her blog posts were becoming fewer and fewer and I was watching the work she was doing in her personal life. The thing about Sadie is that at some point in her life someone convinced her that she didn’t matter. Her food preferences, clothes, books, opinions… someone taught her that what she wanted and needed was of no importance. Throughout our friendship I have seen this baggage play out in her life. So when she told me she needed to become invisible in the social media world, maybe journal privately, and insulate herself I.was.so.proud.

Sadie,

I  am so fucking proud of you! I am proud of each post you authored on TheBrokins. I am proud of each time you reached deep and wrote down your truth. YOU matter. YOU deserve love and goodness. YOU are important. I am a little sad I don’t get to show you off on the internets anymore… because you are pretty much amazing, but I am NOT sad that you did one of the hardest things one can do: face possibly disappointing a friend. I am not disappointed- and neither are the readers! We are so proud of you- proud momma watching their kid graduate with honors-proud. Simultaneously I am humbled to have shared this virtual space with you.  Your friendship has made me a better version of myself.

Take care of you.

And.

I am still holding your hand through this journey of yours.

Thank you for the time you shared here. I hope I make you proud.

 

Car Talk

When I  was in high school two of my best friends were Katie and Crysten. Katie was tall and blonde and had these giant blue eyes and this amazing voice and was just the spunkiest person you would ever meet. She was the bright spot in all the rooms she entered, with her jokes and big smiles and not ever knowing someone that wasn’t immediately her friend. And Crysten was smaller, had darker hair and lighter eyes, full of so much love and warmth and compassion. Crysten would cry over anything, always willing to sit and listen to a broken heart, the kind of person with no qualms about putting a hand on your shoulder when you needed a reminder that you weren’t alone and crazy by yourself in high school. She’d reach out to touch strangers, loved everyone as if they were her own family.

And then there was me. Somewhere between the two, with a little of both the spunk and lights and the warm cup of tea for an aching heart. And physically too, since I was shorter than Katie and taller than Crysten. Darker hair than Katie, lighter than Crysten. For a generous portion of our junior and senior years we were inseparable, together in the school lobby before class, walking downstairs to our lockers and our studies (downstairs because our high school was built in a Cold War era bomb shelter). We did obnoxious bff things like kissing one another on the cheek before leaving for classes and playing the painful boob slapping games that most high school girls play, whether to  attract the attention of boys or to just be annoying I’m not really sure now. We lead the youth group together, surely formidable in our fervor for Jesus.

One day we were talking about our dream cars, the cars that we felt like would most adequately represent who we were at our cores. Katie said she wanted a bright red Jeep Cherokee with no top and cow print seats. Crysten wanted a monstrous truck with a lift kit, the kind she’d probably have to use a step ladder to get into. And when I imagined it, I could totally see them driving those cars around, being fabulously who they were, their identities so established that even their cars exuded Katie-ness and Crysten-ness. And then it was my turn, my turn to decide what kind of car would reflect my soul and I faced the terrifying vacuous space in the front of my brain, the one that pops up every so often when I am asked a big revelatory question about my deepest self and leaves me simultaneously pissed off and panicked because OH MY GOD IF I DON’T GIVE THE RIGHT ANSWER THEY WON’T LOVE ME ANYMORE! So I floundered a second and then popped off with some answer I don’t even remember. And do you know what their response was? After considerable thought, mind you, Katie and Crysten determined that the best car I could possibly have, the car that in their wildest imaginations would most accurately depict the kind of person I was, that shiny core inside of me reflected in a hunk of metal and machinery. They decided that car was none other than the car I was currently driving: the ubiquitous blue 1998 Honda Civic.

You know this car, even if you don’t realize it. It is the car you see in droves, everywhere. Literally, there are freaky numbers of this exact car, it is entirely without character or excitement or mystique. And pffffffff…….with that tiny declaration, that my deep hidden self would be best reflected in that bastard little un-cool car, with its stick shift and windows you had to crank down yourself, the one that lacked even a semblance of character. Yep! That’s the one that you are, Sadie.

Gawd.

And no, Katie and Crysten meant nothing by it. In fact, the actual conversation went something like this: What’s your dream car? Mine is a bright red Jeep with cow seats. I could totally see myself in one. And Sadie, your car just seems to fit you well already.

The conversation was inocuous. But even inocuous conversations, once inserted into my scary wooden roller coaster of a mind, become epically important determinations of character. So I couldn’t let this car thing go. We went to lunch afterward and ate cookies and cheetos and jabbered on about who knows what, but I still thought about it, and the idea that I was nothing special, not a red cow seated jeep, and not an inconveniently large truck, just a little blue manual transmission speck. In fact, several years later I adopted Katie’s dream car as my own, taking on this skin of red and cow print and trying to make it fit my frame. And even though I was constantly tugging at the seams and hems that bunched and hung down awkwardly, I tried to wear this idea that I was a red cow jeep driving kind of girl. And even though it is absurd that I would take this tiny conversation and blow it up into an assessment of my soul and worth, it bothered me for years (obviously, since I am even telling this story now). Because even though the girls meant nothing by it and probably never thought that I would take the car thing so seriously, so pathologically, I took the words and wrapped them tightly up inside me and kept them there, nursing and cajoling and caring for those words like they were my own children, morphing them and allowing them to grow into ideas, into full-fledged theories about who I am as a person. Its not about the car, of course, it is about the idea behind the car, the possibility that my fears are true, I am nothing special. And even worse than that, because hey, I can live for a long time with the knowledge that I am nothing special, but I cannot live with the  possibility that other people know this too. 

These people see right through me.

The Spring and the Green

For the last few weeks the kids and I have been taking long leisurely walks around town. We wake up in the mornings, laze our way through an hour or so of ‘toons and coffee and usually some waffles before we wander outside. We wander the streets, the cracked old sidewalks, while Norah yammers on about all the things that swirl around inside her head and Max sucks his thumb contentedly, soaking everything in. We walk to the library, around the park and through the neighborhoods, trying to avoid the hills.

I love these walks. I love springtime in the South with its literally perfect weather and the green that just bursts up out of nowhere. I mean, one day everything outside is grey and pale yellow, and the next, BAM! all the green. Everywhere green! Green pops out of the trees, the ground, from between the steps on my porch, even out of the concrete. Springtime and its illogical and unstoppable and magical green is enchanting.

So we are walking, walking to get fresh air, to see the green up close, walking to get a better perspective on life, to get our legs and hearts moving and man, just to see things. And there is so much to see! Every day, new things just popping up into our vision.

I had no idea two weeks ago that the little grey house on the corner was sporting a massive rosemary bush in a orange pot on the front law, its piney little bits sticking out like crazy hair. I had never noticed the tiny house a block over and a block down, the one sitting awkwardly on the side of a hill with a teeny strip of space between the back of the house and rock fence, a space that someone has turned into a hidden fort. I’d never seen the turtles sunning themselves on logs underneath the bridge or the massive lilac bushes. Nor had I noticed the house on the corner by the park, the one with old lady panties on the line in the backyard, their voluminous selves flapping in the springtime wind all proud, waving like flags, like happy hands greeting us as we walk by.

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