Catching Katy

Reads, Eats, & Everything Else


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If You Tell

Another book from Kindle Unlimited did not do it for me. It’s definitely hit or miss. If You Tell: A True Story of Murder, Family Secrets, and the Unbreakable Bond of Sisterhood by Gregg Olsen was interesting, especially having a child development background and working in child maltreatment prevention, but could have been about half as long. I understand Olsen wanted to really drive the point home of how evil and messed up this mother was, but some exact information was repeated over and over. And the timeline was not always clear or in a logical order. It felt a little all over the place.

Three sisters survived a horrible and traumatic upbringing at the hands of their mother and father. It is incredible to me how she got away with everything she did to her children and others she “took in” to help. But at the same time it’s not that surprising. And this also shows the psychological effects of physical and mental abuse. One of the sisters still felt guilty for getting their mother in trouble and still helped her while she was in prison. It is baffling but impossible to understand unless you have experienced something like this.

It is an interesting read, especially if you are interested in psychology and child abuse prevention/intervention. But you can probably skim quickly through the book and still get the same out of it.


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After I Do

I have now read 3 books (one was a short story) by Taylor Jenkins Reid and I love her. They have all been different but have some similarities. They have all been about relationships in some way, shape, or form.

After I Do was obviously about a married couple who met young and got married after college. It was a little boring to me and probably my least favorite of the 3 I’ve read by Reid, but it was interesting to read being a [semi] newlywed. A year and a half isn’t truly still newlywed, right?

Lauren and Ryan hit a big rut in their marriage and are not communicating, not interacting, and resenting each other. So they decide to take a year off. He moves out, she stays in the house and keeps the dog. It is understandably tortuous, but they hold out. Life continues. Lauren’s life – which the book focuses on – has it’s own challenges apart from her marriage problems. Now, I don’t how realistic or common this is – to take a year off with no communication and no counseling. It seems a little far-fetched to me but it also takes place in Los Angles, so maybe it’s a thing there. I can’t imagine doing something like this, even if things are rocky in your marriage.

I won’t give away the end because that’s the whole story – do they get back together and work things out?! But overall the story has a great message about the importance of communication in a relationship and the importance of working for your marriage. It was also a very quick read and was free through Kindle unlimited (thanks 3 month trial)!


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Here’s to Another Year

I don’t normally do annual posts for my birthday, but this year threw a little curve ball. Just one week ago, instead of standing with my beautiful friend as she married the man of her dreams, I was in the ICU. And it was scary. Medical issues are not a new venture for me, but it’s not something I deal with on a regular basis anymore. My hematologist even bid me farewell just 2 months ago after seeing a hematologist regularly for 20 years.

I’ll spare you all the fun details, but a fever literally came out of nowhere (at the rehearsal dinner of course) and because I don’t have a spleen, my body cannot handle that. This has happened before, about 5 years ago, but I did not end up in the ICU last time. I made a pretty quick recovery, at least from ICU to going home, but just like last time, there was no real diagnosis. Not exactly an easy thing to deal with.

I write all this for the super cheesy but sometimes necessary reminder to not take anything for granted. When I was in need, I had the most amazing people by my side. From my parents who have been through it all for years to two incredible people who could have easily squirmed away. I received an outpouring of love, prayers, well wishes, flowers and coloring books from friends and coworkers. I am a very lucky woman and I am glad I can relax on my birthday (just slightly against my will/ability) and appreciate those who make my life incredible.

Thank you to everyone for all the well wishes this week and birthday wishes today!! Here’s to another year of health, fun, and adventures at 31!

 

 


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Family Roadtrip

I realize I’m biased, but I have now firmly decided that I have the best family. How many people can take a 12-hour family road trip, spend a week with even more family with no wi-fi and very slow/limited data service, drive the same 12 hours back, and still be on good terms and speaking to each other at the end? Well, my family can!

My mom worked in education, so growing up we were able to take a trip every summer. And every summer we headed. from Atlanta, out in the minivan driving to wherever we were going for 1.5 – 2 weeks. No matter how far, we drove. The longest trip was either Texas or South Dakota. Obviously we stopped along the way but that is a long time to spend in the car. I don’t remember hating it, though. So when my sister-in-law decided we needed to take a trip to Illinois to see my dad’s family (how many sisters-in-law suggest that?!), there was no question. I’ve done that trip at least 20 times in my 29 years of life. Never have I done it, however, with 5 adults and a 15-month-old. Apart from them just being realllly long days in the car, the drive days weren’t bad (plus, going up, I had the back bench in the van to myself). I might even venture to say it was fun. I really am lucky to have such a great family.

So how do you keep a 15-month-old entertained for 12+ hours, you ask? That is a GREAT question and luckily my sister-in-law asked people and Googled well. But really it all depends on the kid. My nephew usually sleeps a lot during their car trips, but I guess it was too exciting to have so many of us in the car and at his entertainment beck and call. So he didn’t sleep much. But he/we read his books, listened to/sang “Baa, Baa Black Sheep”, played with Scout, played with a couple electronic toys, listened to/sang “Baa, Baa Black Sheep”, played on the iPad, read books, and oh, did I mention that we listened to/sang “Baa, Baa Black Sheep”. He really was great and I’m semi-joking about the music…kids songs aren’t all that bad and it makes them so happy! But do be prepared to take more breaks than you would without a child.

Anyway, apart from the drive days, we got to see all of my dad’s family. And what do you do for a week with no wi-fi and slow/limited data service, you ask? Another great question. We played Farkle, went to the park, ate, played corn hole, played Ticket to Ride, ate, went to Wal-Mart, visited dad’s old stomping grounds/neighboring towns, ate, watched Wimbledon, oh, and played more games and ate. It’s honestly pretty nice to have limited social media/web access and just hang out.

I’d say it was a very successful trip, and one that not every family can stand to do. And although it did not take much “planning” per say….I’m totally counting this as #21 on my 30 before 30 list – I helped with plans and games and entertainment, which totally counts.


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Who my mom is

So remember that time I wrote about me? Well, I would have never survived – literally – without my MOM. Words will never be enough to thank her for all the time she spent driving, sitting, calling doctors, calling insurance, paying bills, researching online, drying tears, rubbing my back, taking care of me, and listening. She never gave up, never stopped smiling (even today), and always looked on the bright side. And apart from that she’s the sweetest, most giving, most beautiful woman I know.

So in honor of this weekend, celebrating mothers, I could and would never ask for a better one. I’m not sure I can ever do anything to show her how much she means to me, but I hope I can tell her enough to give her a good idea. LOVE YOU, MOM!

 


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#77. Cards

I’m struggling to cross off a few more things from my 101 list. But #77 was an important one to me – sending a card or note to someone every week for at least 6 weeks. Although it is necessary, I do get tired of the digital age. Plus, personally, I get excited to receive unexpected mail – so I figure other people are too (unless I’m just that nerdy).

So I wanted to be intentional about sending some notes to people. Now if you received one of these, don’t think you were just something on a list – they were all personally though-out. And I really enjoyed sending them and spending time thinking about touching base with people. My plan is to continue, especially with something as simple as a birthday card. That’ll make someone’s day!!

Here’s to the olden days of paper and pen! 🙂

greeting-cards