Dear Sunday Letter friends,
February is nearly gone. Hopefully when it leaves it will take all the ice with it. I’m ready for all the blooming plants. I want to see soil that isn’t covered in ice. I want to go home to the farm and watch tractors and planters moving through the fields. New life sprouting in straight rows—ahhh! Doesn’t that sound nice?
Leo Tolstoy wrote the two most powerful warriors are patience and time.
That’s the truth.
Time is a precious commodity—I feel it in my bones. Still, I want to rush through the end of winter, wishing away days that aren’t ideal.
Do you do this too?
A few days last week were drudgery for me. I had cabin fever, also known as case of the heebie jeebies brought on by no sunshine and an ice storm.
Thank the Lord for great neighbors who invited us next door to eat chili and play games all afternoon. My heebie jeebies quickly morphed into such a good time. I think we’ve discovered the perfect snow day routine.
Through the years we’ve been fortunate to have amazing neighbors!
Wouldn’t it be great to hand-pick all your favorite friends and neighbors and all live nearby in a fabulous area? It’s the stuff of our favorite sit-coms. Think Friends, I Love Lucy, Seinfeld.
Would this be a good thing or would it get old?
I’d try it.
Quick Kitchen Tip
I made grapefruit vanilla shortbread again a few days ago. Have you tried it yet? It really is a uniquely delicious dessert.
The recipe calls for room temperature butter.
I don’t know why, but I have the hardest time letting butter come to room temperature. I know from experience if a recipe calls for room temperature butter, you must bide your time. Try to soften the butter in the microwave, and your cookies will spread as flat as the Mississippi River Delta.
I have, however, learned a quick tip to speed along the process.
- Cut the cold butter into pieces.
- Warm a bowl by running hot water over it and then thoroughly drying it.
- Turn the bowl over the butter and let the bowl’s heat do its quick magic.
Try it! You’ll have room temp butter in half the time.
Wanna Know What’s Unnerving?
Watching your husband read your manuscript for the very first time.
My next book is in the works and will hopefully be available this fall. (My professional editor is scheduled to begin her edits this week). In the meantime, I decided John should take a look at it.
Have I told you the title?
It’s Bernice Runs Away.
Soooo, we printed it.
All the words on all the paper.
Stacked on the kitchen table, a fresh white ream now alive with a story no one has read.
From brain to computer to the pulp of wood.
Seeing it in print made it all the more real to me.
And so he began reading.
While some may believe a spouse would automatically gush over anything his other half writes, John is not like that (and I mean that in the best way). He is objective. He isn’t going to sugar coat anything. And if there is a major problem or something that doesn’t work, he will tell me. A writer needs that feedback.
Here’s the thing: until I receive honest critique, I can pretend Bernice Runs Away is the best thing since Rotel cheese dip.
You will adore it.
Reese Witherspoon will choose it for the Hello Sunshine Book Club.
Positive reviews will flow like rain from a summer cloudburst.
Negative reviews (oh, there are always a few negative reviews) will be kind and heartfelt.
Ha! These are the things I pretend until I hear otherwise.
John is the quietest reader EVER.
While he reads, I distract myself. I wipe down the pantry shelf and dust the dining room table. I fold a load of laundry and iron a few shirts. I listen for any chuckle, every turn of the page, the scratch of his red pencil against paper.
Maddening, I tell you.
But exciting too!
He finished reading it last night, and I am extremely pleased (and relieved) by his feedback❣❣❣ Not to brag, but Bernice Runs Away sure held his attention way better than the book he’s been trying to read (and if you knew the book he’s been reading, you’d know that’s saying something).
Things Momma Says:
If I have to iron it, it’s outta here.
Thanks for putting up with my winter blahs the last couple of weeks. Our daughter and son-in-law had planned to be here this weekend, but for the second time this month, their flight from Austin was cancelled. (The first time due to bad weather; no idea the reason for Friday’s cancellation.)
We were all so disappointed. And I was sad too. We’ve not seen them since August.
When my kids were little, I never imagined going for such a long time without seeing them. This last cancellation had me really blue. But I think about recent world developments and know a flight cancellation is nothing compared to what’s going on in Ukraine.
We are not dodging missiles or being forced to take up arms against an invasion. We have luxuries others only dream of—basic rights—choices—freedoms—all because of our birthplace.
It’s hard to imagine there are people on this planet who have power over peace and war. What’s unfolding overseas is horrific and unnecessary and will affect all of us. I pray for wise decisions from world leaders and comfort to those living in fear.
This too shall pass. I hope.
Grace Grits and Gardening
Farm. Food. Garden. Life.