Saturday, May 28, 2011

the good life.

It's just another exciting Saturday night at Grammy and Papa's house. You know, the usual: cheering on the birds for eating cicadas (we don't like cicadas. Did you know they live underground for decades and then pop out of the ground like terrifying zombie bugs? Sick), making peach cobbler, watching Antiques Roadshow (or "the auction" as Grammy and Papa call it), and eating kielbasas, potatoes and, most importantly, sauerkraut. I love sauerkraut. So much. I don't think there is any meal that wouldn't be better with sauerkraut. Sometimes I dream about it. Especially about that Sonic commercial with the hot dogs and that one hot dog from New York with all the mustard and onions and sauerkraut all over it.
There is no way you can convince me this isn't heaven on a hoagie bun.
I also want to eat the chili dog from that commercial. Because it looks incredibly amazing. And I love chili dogs. You know what else is good with chili on it? Practically everything. I think that I would especially like chili on a hamburger. And on potatoes. Oh and I just discovered how insanely good green chili is on my last trip to Colorado. I experienced it by devouring a soapapilla filled with grilled chicken, beans and cheese and doused in green chili. Oh. My. Goodness. I think I am going to start making it and eating it every day. And I also want to start being a beekeeper. I mean, I'm unemployed, I really like honey and I really want to wear one of those sweet white bee suits because they're so cool. Imagine being invincible to bees. That must be one of the greatest feelings on earth. And I would make so many friends because everyone likes honey and everyone would want to try on my bee suit and dance around in the bees. And I would feed people peanut butter and honey sandwiches and honey beer for every meal.  And we will be happy and allergy-free.
The look of sheer joy. And invincibility.

Sunday, May 22, 2011


Today, my mother made me clean out all my Save Boxes in the attic. Growing up, Brunner children have Save Boxes. This means, my mom would get a big plastic tub and we could save things that were special to us. Apparently I had a lot of things that were important to me. Great things like that seed necklace I made at Girl Scout camp and that picture of me with Tigger at Disneyland (and yes, Beth Gandy, I am wearing the purple plaid Pooh Bear overalls. You can be jealous of my trendiness. I don't mind). But among those valued items, most of which are now in the trash, I found my Pog collection. And I'm keeping it. It will always be special and important to me. Especially that Pog with the hologram picture of a dolphin on it. And most importantly, my Apollo 13 slammer. When I was little I really wanted to be an astronaut. Fortunately, I did not pursue that career because I just heard that astronauts are about to not exist and we're sending the last group of people up into space very soon. Anyway, I have lots of space things that I found today, like autographed pictures of astronauts and fancy photos of the Hubble telescope. You know, really cool, non-nerdy things like that. And I like them. And I'm going to frame them all and hang them in my future single-independent-working-girl-Julie house.
It doesn't get any better than this.
And I found awards from things like the spelling bee and Destination Imagination that congratulate me on getting second place for something or another. And I found trophy's from that one year I thought it would be a good idea to try and play sports. And I found my bunny collection and my thimble collection and my rock collection and my bell collection. I tried to throw the rock collection away, but my mom wouldn't let me. She said the rocks are too shiny and special to throw away. My mom thought that everyone should have a collection growing up, so I guess I had 5. All I ever wanted to collect were shot glasses, but my mom wouldn't let me. I mean, come on now. What little girl wouldn't want to collect cute miniature cups that have pictures of bunnies on them? 
Bunnies and bowties. Things that children love.
But I guess my mom didn't want her 5 year-old to look like a huge boozer. So she just started buying me things like thimbles and bells hoping I would forget about collecting shot glasses. I didn't forget. For a while I tried collecting those little toothpick holders, but those are really weird so I stopped.  So, my point is that I now have numerous collections that will be gracing the bookshelves of that single-independent-working-girl-Julie house. And since it's my house I can do whatever I want. And I want to wear aprons, eat ice cream out of shot glasses, dance to Paul Simon and display my trophies, collections and autographs from astronauts.

Monday, May 9, 2011

so much excitement.

It is Monday. Monday's generally aren't very exciting for people. I mean, you're probably just sitting at your respective houses/apartments/coffee shops just waiting to hear about the most exciting part of my day. And I know you're thinking, "But Julie, it's only 10am. How could your day be so exciting already?" Well. I will tell you.

I'm in Owensville (exciting). At Grammy and Papa's house because I literally have only 2 obligations this entire week (exciting). One is a birthday party at McNally's, so I'm not sure if most people would really count that as an obligation, but I am going to. In fact, that is my favorite obligation of the week. I wish all my obligations involved pepper jack cheese sticks and a beer. But they don't, and in retrospect, that's probably a good thing. The other obligation is on Tuesday, which is not today. So, I'm in Owensville (double exciting).

On Monday/Wednesday/Friday mornings at 8am, Grammy goes to Old Lady Chair Aerobics at rehab (exciting). Yes, that is exactly what Grammy calls the class. Yes, Grammy took me with her this morning. Yes, it was all old ladies. Yes, it is just as good as it sounds. 

Just imagine a room full of old ladies sitting in chairs and doing bicep curls with 3lb weights.

Then, as if it could get any better, the instructor went to a closet and pulled out a bag with Pickle Ball paddles. What is Pickle Ball, you may wonder? Are you ready for this? Basically, everyone gets a paddle and a Nerf ball and you play life-size ping pong with each other (exciting). Yeah. Grammy has been telling me about Pickle Ball for weeks. It was awesome. Nerf balls flying all over the room, old ladies scurrying around picking them up, determined looks on everyone's faces. Love.

Maybe my impending unemployment isn't so bad. I mean, I could always move back in with Grammy and Papa and just play Pickle Ball every day. Roomies unite (exciting)!

Monday, May 2, 2011


Today, as I was picking children up from school I listened to three 12-14 year-olds discuss in detail the death of Osama Bin Laden. They told me how our soldiers shot him right in the head multiple times as well as how they killed the two women who were with Bin Laden. They explained the types of bullets and guns that were used, argued with each other about where he was dumped in the sea and how far the soldiers threw him, detailed how “we” beat him up and tortured him before he was killed because he deserved it, and joked about the amount of blood Bin Laden must have lost throughout this process. And it broke my heart.

I feel we have failed these kids. They have grown up in a society that glorifies hatred and violence. Every other word out of their mouth is about hurting someone or how much they hate something. But how can we blame them when that is what surrounds them? Our country has so many issues, and most of them come from the inside, not the outside. It is important we stand together, but what about standing together to make sure every child has an equal chance of succeeding, no matter their socioeconomic status? What about standing together to reduce the number of homeless people in our communities by providing more resources and support? What about standing together to eliminate human trafficking? Can we really claim to be the "Land of the Free" when people are forced to sell their bodies for sex and labor within our borders? What about standing together to reduce the violence in our communities? What about standing together to make sure every child feels the love and appreciation they deserve? We give up almost instantaneously on those "bad, disobedient children" in our country, but search the world with vigor and dedication for years to get revenge on one man.

I don't know if all or any of the things I heard about Bin Laden's death from these kiddos are true, and frankly I don't really want to know. I do believe it is important to protect and stand up for our country and I admire those people who dedicate their lives to do so. However, I think our focus should be on the future, not the past. There is nothing we can do about what is behind us. All we have is what is ahead.

"I mourn the loss of thousands of precious lives, but I will not rejoice in the death of one, not even an enemy. Returning hate for hate multiplies hate, adding deeper darkness to a night already devoid of stars. Darkness cannot drive out darkness: only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate: only love can do that." —MLK