1. Today, I leave for Chicago and ALA. I honestly cannot believe I am going out of town again. I counted it up and this is my sixth flying trip since the end of May. Which is a lot for anyone, but especially someone who normally tends towards a hermit-like status, like myself. I am doing my best to rally, though, and I know I will before I get there, because ALA is super fun and I’ll get to catch up with so many people. Just a reminder, if you’re going to the convention, you can find me at the Penguin cocktail party tonight and at Anderson’s bookstore in Naperville with Laurie Halse Anderson at 7pm on Saturday (call 630-355-2665 for more details). Sunday, I’ll be at the YALSA YA Author Coffee Klatch and the BBYA Pizza Party. I’m signing at the Penguin booth, #2120, from 10:30-11:30 on Sunday. Then it’s back here to stuff my suitcase in the closet and collapse for a few days. I’ve never been to Chicago before, though, so I am hoping to get in some shopping, which I hear is great, as well as some deep dish pizza. Oh, and wind. I will be expecting wind!
2. Because of all this coming and going I am SO behind on my TV it’s ridiculous. I mean, I have TWO episodes of Weeds to watch, a show I usually can’t wait even five seconds to get to. While in Cape Cod, we had the most basic of basic cable, most of which was showing Michael Jackson coverage, so I was glad we’d brought along some DVDs for the few times we wanted to just relax for a little while. What really did the trick? The Office. Thirty minutes, season three, and it always made me laugh out loud. I loved it so much I bought season four to take with me to Chicago. If I have a free moment and am not sleeping (unlikely, but possible) I’ll be all about the Scranton party. Ain’t no party like a Scranton party, cause a Scranton party don’t stop……
3. I’ve written here off and on about our trials and tribulations with the deer and how they’ve made it SO hard to have plants and a garden. This year, we put up a fence, but I was hesitant to get my hopes up that they, and the rabbits, would not find some way to scale it and pick everything clean, as they always do. But it worked! We have had greens and beans and squash and now I have sunflowers and zinnias. It’s amazing. Check out the latest bounty:
This week, I made the first batch of spaghetti sauce using our tomatoes. Man, it was good. I am planning to make a LOT and freeze it for the winter. We’re like pioneers! (Okay, pioneers with a freezer. And, um, a coffeemaker. But whatever.)
4. One of the results of all this traveling is that I have TOTALLY missed out so far on one of our serious summer rituals, watching The Tour de France. Normally we are in from Stage 1, but we were gone, and now we are trying to both catch up AND avoid spoilers because of the time difference, which is not easy. But Lance is riding again, which is SO inspiring, and by all accounts it’s been really exciting so far. With me gone this weekend, I have a feeling my husband will watch nothing BUT cycling. Break out the red wine and blue cheese, we are touring!
5. Do you ever feel like so much has happened, and you wish you could just go back and SLOOOW it all down so you could enjoy it all over again? That’s how I feel about the last month or so. I mean, taken alone, ANY of the stuff that happened—the book hitting number one, being on GMA and Today and in EW, me on NPR—would be huge. But altogether, with the traveling, it’s just like a crazy big fun blur. But it has been fun, so fun, and I’m kind of sad to see this leg of it all end. I wonder if once I’m home, or even next month, it will be too late to try to still savor it all? Eli and Auden would say no, it’s never too late. I hope they’re right. On a sort of related note, I was reading US Weekly last night and there’s Lauren Conrad, whose LA Candy came out the same day as Along for the Ride. First, she does NOT look all fried and exhausted like I do. She is cute and fashionable and fresh-faced (in my defense, though, she also does not have a toddler. Just saying.). But in one quote, she says, “I’m almost done with my second book!” And okay, I’m not trying to be competitive, but WHOA. I haven’t even started my next book yet. Uh-oh. Guess it might be time to get back to work?