cocktails & pandemic

Thing 1:

When I had bronchitis and I was basically useless and after I’d watched Wreck-It Ralph four times I started watching episodes of TableTop on YouTube. I have not been much of a board game person beyond never finishing a single game of Monopoly as a child and an enduring fondness for Clue! but watching other people play newer games was oddly fascinating and entertaining (I think it would be even if you weren’t nursing a fever) and beyond that was a fantastic way to get a sense of the games themselves.

So when I could breathe again I went out and picked up a couple of games that I’d been intrigued by and now I am a little bit obsessed with Pandemic. I’ve never really played a cooperative board game before and really like it and it’s reminded me how much I like strategizing. And swearing at inanimate objects. Also I feel like it’s teaching me better geography.

This is pretty much Wil Wheaton‘s fault, but I have been fond of Wil ever since I watched Star Trek: TNG on a tiny black & white tv and had no idea how ugly Wesley’s sweaters were. True story.


Thing 2:

In keeping with the “things I couldn’t do when I was sick” theme, I am back to creative cocktailing and I’m playing with something I was introduced to via Julibox a few months ago: the wine-based cocktail.

Tonight’s experiment was a variation on a recipe they’d sent that I made a few creative substitutions for and ended up with a pinot noir/apple brandy/Licor 43 (which is, by the way, one of my new favorite things)/pomegranate juice/lemon concoction that was really quite lovely.

I’m getting better at creative substitutions. And fixing cocktails if they don’t quite come together on the first try. Also, it’s nice to have options for wine that are sangria-esque without being proper sangria.


Both of these things combined are doing wonders for keeping my brain awake and my inner editor distracted, which is precisely what I need right now.


People love the Validator.

They swear by it and whenever it’s broken they complain, loudly and widely.

The problem with the Validator is that it does not discriminate.

It’s just a post, really, with big letters that spell VALIDATOR and a stamping bit on top for validations.

And it’ll validate anything.

Your deepest fears or your unfounded biases or your parking.

It doesn’t care, or rather, it gives the appearance of not caring.

It does break a lot.

Some people whisper that the Validator breaks itself on purpose.

Ashamed of its own apathy.


About flax-golden tales. Photo by Carey Farrell. Text by Erin Morgenstern.

bunnybunny without a hop

Lost your hop! the other bunnies say and they laugh at the joke but he doesn’t find it amusing.

He misses his hop and he doesn’t know how to get it back but when he tries to explain the other bunnies don’t understand.

They tell him to cheer up, to just get up and hop.

He tells them he doesn’t remember how.

The other bunnies leave him alone after that.

The bunny sits quietly and watches the grass and waits for the flowers.

Flowers usually make him feel better.

And then maybe his hop will come back, even though he cannot see the point in hopping at the moment.

The hop usually comes back, eventually.

But he does not know when eventually will be so he waits and watches and tries to remember what hopping feels like.


About flax-golden tales. Photo by Carey Farrell. Text by Erin Morgenstern.

momentary spring

So it was Spring, it really was, even though it’s decided to be snowy cold again.

Pictures from proper Springy Central Park this past Sunday:






diy springDIY spring

We have to have Spring now, my littlest sister declares.

This declaration is followed by a watering can emptying over my head.

I manage to save my book from liquid annihilation, barely.

April showers to bring the May flowers! she explains before I can ask about the details of this do-it-yourself Spring.

But she doesn’t have flowers, she takes my book away and hands me bunch of fuzz-tipped pussy willows instead.

Then she gives me a paper parasol.

Oh! I should have given you this before the showers, she says, frowning and turning the empty watering can upside down and letting the last drops fall on the grass.

I’m not sure painted paper works for April showers, I tell her, and the frown goes full-blown Grumpy Cat.

We’re doing Spring wrong! she wails, flopping down on the soggy grass next to me.

It takes awhile, but I manage to convince her that we’re doing Spring just fine because there’s no snow, and we gather our parasols and pussy willows and head off in search of proper flowers and a towel to dry my hair.


About flax-golden tales. Photo by Carey Farrell. Text by Erin Morgenstern.

better. mostly.

I am mostly better. I say this because I can actually get out of bed and I can speak normally in between coughing fits. I am also very tired most of the time.

I miss cocktails. And wine. And deep breaths.

I keep having to cancel restaurant reservations which makes me sad because when I was super sick I thought “2 weeks away! I’ll be better by then!” and now no, not so much. Well, better but better does not equal healthy.

I also haven’t been able to work all that well since my head is all cloudy, but somewhere in the super-delirious fever-y stage I figured out one of the things that’s been bothering me about the novel-in-progress. So that’s something. I’m not sure how to fix it yet, and I hadn’t really planned on basically losing two weeks of working on it, but it’s something.

So, I will be healing more and locking myself away in my writing cave. For the next few weeks the blog will likely be all photo posts all the time in between flax-goldens. Which will probably be more interesting than all the illness-related babbling.

lonely giraffea lonely giraffe spun into myth

They say the silver giraffe is nocturnal but that’s not true.

He suffers from insomnia.

They say that he will visit you if you leave an apricot out as an offering on a night with a full moon but that’s not true either.

The silver giraffe wanders aimlessly down alleyways and through backyards and parking lots at mid-day or midnight, regardless of moon phase.

He is awfully fond of apricots, that bit is true-ish.

Sometimes he is difficult to see, because he is shiny and reflective and walks very quietly.

They say if you find him he will heal your broken heart and that’s not true true though he often wishes it was.

But if you find him and you ask he will sit with you and listen to your secret sorrows and never tell a soul even if you don’t have an apricot for him. He just appreciates the company.

And you might feel better anyway.


About flax-golden tales. Photo by Carey Farrell. Text by Erin Morgenstern.

After my fever hit 104 on Friday, Adam made me go to the doctor and what I’d thought was a spring cold was the flu, and it went and morphed into bronchitis just for good measure.

I have pretty much been asleep since Saturday. Today I am eating homemade chicken soup which is a major accomplishment considering I could barely swallow water for awhile there.

Needless to say I am behind on life and it’s going to take me awhile to catch back up. If you are waiting on anything from me it’s going to be later than I would have liked but I’ll get to it eventually.

I haven’t been this sick in a really long time and I’d forgotten how miserable it is. Getting slowly better but I’m still one big tired cough.

I will be really, really glad to be properly healthy again.