The Five!

1. This week, I went on my first vacation in AGES—since October, actually. Me and the fam hit the road to Asheville, NC, which is one of my favorite places. First, we have friends we LOVE there. Also, there are great bookstores. And the FOOD! Oh, my goodness. I had grits at the Early Girl Eatery that were the best I have had, seriously, ever in my life. And that is saying something, as I have lived here in the South, Grits Central, since I was 3. Of course, my family never ate grits, as my parents are from New York and Baltimore, respectively. We did not do biscuits for breakfast, either. But all it took was spending the night at other people’s houses a few times for this to become my breakfast of choice:

MMMMM. And now I’m hungry again. Maybe I should do Brinner tonight?

2. It used to be when we went to Asheville, we went out to late dinners, then for a drinks and maybe to see music before crashing and sleeping in. Then, breakfast and coffee and shopping and milling around, just taking in the sights and breathing in all that mountain air before doing it all again the next night. Now, though, it is a family vacation, which means: early to bed (at least for me and the toddler), early to rise (6am! just like at home!) and then breakfast, bookstore and several other outings all before lunch at 11:30. On the downside, I didn’t get to buy any cute stuff at the clothing and jewelry stores I love there. On the upside, my credit card is now sufficiently cooled off for when I head to NYC next week. And anyway, before my daughter I NEVER would have been at the Nature Center when the DOORS OPENED, first there to see otters and black bears and wolves. Who needs sleep when you can experience that kind of wildlife? Not me. Apparently.

3. Yes, so, next week I am heading up to New York for a bunch of meetings about my new book. I’ll get to hear tour details and marketing plans, all the fun stuff, so I’m really excited. (I’m not doing any public events, but will hopefully be back to do a reading in May sometime.) As usual, it will be a total whirlwind: I can’t seem to go anywhere (especially for work) without packing in as much as possible. In fact, I think as of now I have ONE meal free for the entire trip, a random breakfast I may very likely eat standing up outside the window of Good Morning America. Although what I SHOULD do is order room service and sleep in. But can I resist GMA? It’s so hard when I know they are just a few blocks instead of many states away. But sleeeeeep. Hmmm. Stay tuned….

4. I am usually late to any party, which is why I know you all probably have LONG ago discovered the ultimate timesuck that is StumbleUpon. Oh, my goodness. This is just what I DON’T need when I have a million emails to answer, newsletters to write, and errands to run. And yet, I can’t look away. Where else can I take a virtual visit to the Sistine Chapel AND find a great recipe for onion rings, all from the comfort of my office? If you haven’t checked it out, you should. Although I am warning you: if you’re on deadline, or behind on your taxes or anything else, STAY AWAY. It will not help. Trust me.

5. Finally, an update about the blog. Can I tell you that to post that breakfast picture, I had to 1) copy it from YFrog 2) reduce the size in Preview 3) open Filezilla and upload it to my website 4) link to it? This is why blogging exhausts me sometimes, because I am using sort of antiquated ways to do it. But last week, I met with my super web design guy Mark, who showed me how it will all work if we move everything over to WordPress. My favorite part was how quickly he could upload pictures, something he punctuated by hitting keys EXTRA hard and then loudly proclaiming, “DONE!” I think we were getting weird looks at Panera, where we met, but what can I say, we were excited. I think this cleaner, more efficient way might be just the change I need. For those of you who were worried I wouldn’t still have comments, never fear: I will. And hopefully, no spam. We will take them out with a single key swipe, yelling, “DONE!” I think this will have to be my new mantra. I will practice it over breakfast.

Have a good weekend, everyone!