Fabulous Finds

February 27, 2013 | 14 comments

Today is the best day ever! I finally found some amazing housekeepers (probably because God got tired of my whining), and they have the very unenviable task of coming here today to do a major deep clean. I even got some sage advice from Auntie Leila herself when I asked on Twitter about how to keep their services:

On top of that, I am so pleasantly surprised by how the comments to the veils post have been going. With only a few exceptions, I thought the responses were constructive and charitable. Thanks for a great discussion!

Let’s celebrate with some gems from the treasure chest of the internet…

– I cried when I first read this, and now I have tears in my eyes again after re-reading it. A mother writes about adopting an older child, saying that she had no qualifications to undertake something like that. Yet she says of meeting orphaned children waiting for families: “We couldn’t offer much, except ourselves, which is all they wanted.”

– Aspiring authors, take note: Tracey Garvis Graves self-published her first novel after getting 14 rejections from literary agents, and it did so well that she ended up with a seven-figure, two-book deal from a major publishing house.

– The photo tour of the house of an American mother who’s raising her kids on the outskirts of Nairobi, Kenya. I’ve read this post about five times. It’s so fascinating to see such a different life!

The last words of a young woman who fought against the Nazis, before she was executed: “How can we expect righteousness to prevail when there is hardly anyone willing to give himself up individually to a righteous cause?”

– How knowing Latin helped one reporter get the scoop of the century (via Anne).

– Speaking of which, here are some short, clear explanations of how the conclave works.

– I think I’ve linked to this before, but need to link to it again to be sure that no one misses the awesomeness: The Nietzsche Family Circus, quotes from Friedrich Nietzsche paired with random Family Circus cartoons.

– As someone has been suffering through bitter 50-degree temperatures over here, I can really relate to the people who live in Oymyakon, the coldest village on earth.

– I love how Shawn Coyne describes failure as “the currency of creation.”

– If you need a laugh, you can read through the police blotter for America’s third most expensive zip code.

– Want to know what true love looks like? Watch this video.


  1. Katie @ NFP and Me

    That police thing in Atherton was hilarious! “The hawk was quiet and enjoying his dinner.” I’m dying!

    Electing The Pope has been a godsend! I’ve referenced it so often these past few days it’s crazy!

  2. Juliana

    Yay for housecleaners!! We have 50 degree weather today and I ditched my coat and have on 3/4 length sleeves–all a matter of perspective, I guess!

  3. Joseph Moore

    The police blotter was funny and true. I knew people who lived in Atherton, even visited one (a live in cook for a famous rich guy) once. Their neighborhood problems are not our neighborhood problems.

    Nietzsche can never be mocked enough.

  4. Catherine

    Speaking of the conclave, Jen, here is a pretty entertaining short video on “How to Become Pope”. It’s been viewed by, oh, about 1.5 million people so far. This is how most people apparently get their information about the Catholic Church… 😉

  5. Alishia Hanson

    I guess I’d have to read it to really know, but that self-published novel seems to be about a 30 year-old woman and her teenage student…should I be offended?!

  6. Patty

    I LOVE that video too! so beautiful…I like when he puts the crown on her bike helmet 😉

  7. Carrie

    I love the Tiny Green Elephants! I’m glad you found them too! 🙂

  8. Ed

    The following website assigns you a Cardinal for you to pray for during the papal conclave so that the best person (please God) is chosen for the next Pope.

  9. Barbara

    I’m guessing I did not add to the conversation 😉

    I am currently having the same problem you are with finding domestic help. I’m not physically incapable of doing the work, just occupied with our baby’s various therapies and appointments, etc. Oh if it were only as easy as lassoing the first person who walks by my house.

  10. Tricia Jennings

    I’ve loved reading the Atherton police blotter for years now (since it’d printed in our local paper).
    My all time favorite was when someone reported to the police that a deer had crossed the road at about 8 am.
    At about 9:11 am it was reported that the deer had crossed back over the road AGAIN.

    Every week, it’s priceless.

    They call in “suspicious people with unusual tools” – their neighbors housekeepers with mops and vacuums(look out Jen!) and even someone casing a house from a parked car (turns out it was a stuffed animal in the back seat of a car).

    Talk about #firstworldproblems&toomuchtimeonyourhands

  11. Elizabeth

    50 degree weather?!?! This time of year, around here in Central New York (upstate) that would mean shorts and flip-flops, and I’m not even kidding. If you’re ever planning travels this way I’d highly recommend coming in July, August, or September — any other time and we can’t promise it won’t snow. 😉

    PS – I loved “Minor Revisions.”

Connect With Me On Social Media or Explore My Site



The "THIS IS JEN" podcast is on Facebook & all podcast apps


- Subscribe on iTunes or Google Play (audio)

- Get weekly bonus episodes on Patreon

- Sign up for my email list to be the first
to know about new tour dates