For the Record: March 20, 2015

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Winter’s second-to-last sunrise, 2015.

For the Record is a look back at the week that was: I share my current obsessions, weekend plans, and other snapshots from a life in progress.

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Happy spring! After picking it up in the summer, I finally finished reading Jo Baker’s Longbourn. The narrative is set during and around the action of Jane Austen’s Pride and Prejudice but centers on the Bennet household’s first housemaid upon whom Baker bestows a name and a backstory. You’ll never look at Elizabeth Bennet’s muddy country walks the same way again.  I tore through the final third of the novel, completing it in the wee hours of the morning with a few tears shed. Highly recommended. Download it from your library, order it at Powell’s or find it at your favorite local bookstore.

Did you see the The Sound of Music retrospective on ABC Wednesday night? It’s been 50 years since the movie was made and released and I’ve probably seen it at least 50 times during my own lifetime (most recently only a few months ago), but what a wonderful way to revisit an enduring classic. I found many a kindred spirit on the Twitter hashtag chat (#SoundofMusicABC) as we all shared our favorite memories of the film and reactions on looking back.

The web was all abuzz this week about Kelly Clarkson’s cover of Tracy Chapman’s “Give Me One Reason.” Now I love me some Kelly Clarkson and her rendition is full of greatness and grit, but I find myself preferring Chapman’s original take, with all its restraint and quiet, plaintive longing.  Take a listen:

As part of my personal commitment to keeping the planet sustainable, I’ve been reducing my meat intake and incorporating more vegan meals into my diet. A new favorite is this quinoa with black beans and cilantro recipe: inexpensive, quick and easy to prepare, and delicious. Versatile, too, as you can eat it hot or cold, as a side dish or on its own. This one will definitely be staying in my rotation for a while.

On tap for the weekend

Ain’t no party like a trail work party ‘cuz a trail work party don’t stop! I’ll be spending some time with one of our local outdoors conservation groups to complete the creation of a brand new trail for outdoors recreation. Can’t think of a better way to spend the first full weekend of spring. Hope your own adventures are equally as fulfilling.

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