This book was a page turner. Couldn't put it down. I finished it in five days, which for me, is a miracle.
Swimming Lessons is a story about a woman - wife, mother, friend - that goes missing after leaving a trail of letters for her husband hidden in his overwhelmingly large collection of books. Ingrid's letters outline her life, in grueling detail, starting from the point when she met her husband up until the day she disappears. There is a lot of speculation around where she had gone. Had she drowned in the sea? Or had she chosen to leave?
Her letters are presented every other chapter. The space in between is filled with a present day account of life without Ingrid through the eyes of her daughter, Flora. She shares the other side of Ingrid's story. How others viewed Ingrid. How her family and friends, primarily her husband, were coping (or not coping) with her disappearance.
If I could choose one word to describe this book, it would be "haunting." Haunting in a way that was mysterious, moody and reflected the deep complication that exists on some level in every parent/child relationship and in marriage. I'll never forget it.
If you're a lover of books with happy endings, this wouldn't be for you. But if you like stories that explore the "things left unsaid" in relationships - you'll love this. Enjoy!
Missing Richard Simmons is the first podcast I've listened to in its entirety. From start to finish. Anticipating each new episode that was released. Sadly, it stops at six episodes, which was heartbreaking to me, but I've finally come to terms with it.
I "sweated to the oldies" with Richard Simmons growing up. We had several of his VHS tapes in our home that my mom and I would workout to regularly. His videos were my absolute favorite because his energy, even through a VHS tape, was completely infectious. His smile, his life, his words, his moves - everything about him oozed personality and motivation.
I hadn't realized he had stepped out of the spotlight and hasn't been seen for almost three years until I heard about this podcast. Dan Taberski, the creator and narrator of the podcast, used to be good friends with Richard before he vanished. The loss of losing Richard in such a sudden and unexpected way made Dan yearn to find out what happened to him. His primary question was, "Why would someone who is so positive, so impactful, so 'larger than life,' and who has so many strong relationships with so many, just disappear without saying good bye?"
Richard's reach was beyond anything I would have imagined or have ever heard of. This man is special. In every sense of the word. By the end, I could completely understand why so many people are heartbroken over his disappearance and absence from their lives. Heck, I felt like something was missing from my life without him in it!
It is a truly touching and inspiring podcast overall, with a hint of melancholy throughout. It is available for free through the Apple Podcasts app and at the link I provided earlier in the post. Happy listening!
I felt like I was writing an intro for Sesame Street with the title of this post, but the title says it all. I'm a proud Sires girl, so when I see the letter 'S' in the décor section of a store, it catches my eye.
Using letters in decorating has been a long-standing trend. I've used letters in my decorating recently, but I wanted to go BIGGER.
You'd be surprised, but it's kind of hard to find the letter 'S' among all of the other letters available. So when I've seen one at a good price, I've been purchasing them. I had a few on hand already, but picked up the mother load at Gordmans. I rarely shop there, but the deals were too good to pass up. Because I was able to get so many for such a low cost, I decided I was ready to start my larger scale 'S' wall in our living room.
I started by laying everything I had out on the floor. I arranged and rearranged everything a good 20 times.
So many times in fact, that my assistant and I needed a nap.
Once I had everything laid out just as I wanted, I took a photo with my phone for reference and eyeballed the placement on the wall. (I'm a really good eyeballer - if you aren't - you could use a tape measurer and painters' tape to mark out where you'd like everything to go!) Instead of nails, I used 3M Velcro strips to hang everything. I've really fallen in love with these little boogers because they don't damage your wall, which is good for someone like me who is always changing up our décor.
I was pretty pleased with how this wall came out. My love for the letter 'S' can live on in a very visual way now, which is what I've been waiting for! And this is just the start, I envision it spreading wider across the wall over time.