Summer Daze

I can’t believe it’s already AUGUST – when did that HAPPEN?!? I feel like the summer has flown by, but I’ve made some memories along the way. How was your summer, lovelies?

I’ve been… taking in a baseball game… exploring old cemeteries… I LEARNED HOW TO RIDE A MOTORCYCLE (hello, bucket list item!)… we explored Marengo Cave and St. Meinrad abbey in southern Indiana… I went to the ALA Annual Conference in Chicago (and got a bitchin’ hotel room view out of the deal)… we saw sunsets and moonrises… we explored Twin Swamps and took a boat ride on the Ohio River… we visited the Lou (Louisville) and I had my first bibimbap… and we rolled the Bookmobile to the county Fair. Whew!

Roll on that fall weather, I say….


Spring Has Come and Gone…

….and I don’t know where it went! This spring has gone SO quickly, friends… how about for you? How have you been been spending your days?

As for me, I’ve been…

Enjoying the spring sights and flowers around Sunnymeade… mourning the end of Black Sails…visiting museums and good eats (and tiara try-ons!) in Chicago…going to see Ina Garten live in St. Louis with Johnna and her hubby…visiting the Garden of the Gods for a hike ’round… introducing Zoe to the boy (who clearly HATE each other *grin*)…rockin’ a Relay For Life bake sale… visiting our town’s brand new dog park… and basically enjoying each day as it comes.

Happy Summer, friends!

Another Season Passes….

As we begged off previously, the last couple of months have just flown by: the holidays, travels, work, school, and everything in between. Here’s what I’ve been up to…

Seeing James Patterson speak at a library conference… walking in our city’s holiday parade (The antlers LIT UP. It was everything.)… speechifying at a local fundraiser… running a wine pull to make money to give away for grant projects… watching Gilmore Girls with Johnna… rockin’ some new glasses… celebrating the holidays (and Rogue One!)… training the most amazing Relay rockstars in the state… misty mornings… and of course, ringing in 2017 with Johnna! I miss my bestie – we need to stop being so busy, darn it!

How’s your winter been, friends?



We Know, WE KNOW…


You guys.

You guuuuuuuys….

We’ve been really bad bloggers.

We know. We suck. A lot.

(Look. Even a reproachful look there from Zoe…)

Trips (Vegas! France!), holidays, workworkwork, schoolschoolschool, volunteering… it’s all added up to not enough hours in the day, and not NEARLY enough time for the Stubborn Sunshine girls to even hang out with each other (I mean, other than Gilmore Girls and Sherlock marathons…)! But, it’s a new year, time to start fresh, resolutions and all that, right?

So, to get started… I (Marissa) have a RIDICULOUS amount of book reviews to post, as well as my annual reading roundup. So, how about, for the next couple of days, we just blaze through all those reviews and start the year fresh, yeah?

Plus, we have travel pictures to share, recipes to toss around… there’s more to come!

We promise.

Happy 2017… we’re glad you’re here with us. 🙂


Summer is Flying By…

And how has your summer been, lovely readers? It seems impossible that it’s already July, and yet, here we are! Johnna has been ridiculously busy with school, her job and her family, so I’ve been trying hold down the fort here on the blog until she’s got time on her side again! In the meantime, here’s how my summer has been going, how about yours?

I’ve been…growing flowers…enduring summer stories…cooking…reading (and eating!)…welcoming visitors to my porch (hello, Mr. Froggy!)…turning back into a redhead…celebrating the 4th of July with Johnna (aren’t these glasses she got us a kick?!)…and appreciating the kind of friends who bust your dog out of puppy jail (uh, the kennel) while you’re gone (thanks, Johnna and Scott!)


40th Birthday Celebration


So, I had a milestone of a birthday back in May – and to be honest, I was having a hard time with it.


It sounds so adult and grown up and like you should have your act together, right?

(I don’t.)

Johnna knew I was struggling with my impending birthday, and so, doing what she does best, she turned it from something to dread to a memory I’ll remember my entire life.

She threw me a surprise party, complete with all my “framily” from near and far – everyone from college friends to TinyTown friends to my bestie (and her mum!) since I was four years old, all gathered together in one place.

It was…magic.

Seeing all my people talk and laugh and figure out who was who made my heart so happy.

Johnna also let me mark something off my bucket list (the list is a post for another day!)…having a “pop up dinner” by candlelight outside…

Truly magic.

Gorgeous flowers, a beautiful cake, hilarious games, gifts and memories, dinner and conversation with all my favorite people…truly a glorious surprise.

I’m a lucky sausage indeed.


Chi-Town Weekend

I love Chicago.

I always have.

Growing up, we always spent a week in the Chicago area visiting our dearest family friends, so I have such fond memories of this fantastic Midwestern city.

So, I jumped at the chance to have a “girls weekend” in the City, seeing the traveling Van Gogh exhibit at the Art Institute of Chicago (one of my favorite places in the world, with some of my favorite art in the world), taking a boat tour on the river to see the diverse architecture, eating out at great restaurants (The Purple Pig and Giordano’s for authentic Chicago pizza!), doing the obligatory “tourist photo” in front of the Bean (actually named “Cloud Gate”) and spending time with great friends, old and new!

Have you been to Chicago before? What’s your favorite thing to see?