Little Things

I’m alone for the next four days. Kids are at their dads’. Ty is in Hawaii enjoying a tropical storm. I’ve got tons of writing to do. I need to unplug my modem and get writing. Sometimes its hard to get that motivation going but once I’m writing, I’m happy. It’s just that first leap…

I saw Twilight last night with a couple girlfriends and the theater was mostly young girls. The girls screamed throughout the movie. I felt like I was watching footage from an Elvis concert with all the screaming, swooning fans. I just kept giggling at the screaming. I felt so old. And giggly.

A few days ago I pulled out my old orange juice juicer and have been making fresh squeezed orange juice every morning since for my son Ty and me (Jake’s not real big on oranges anymore due to a flu on Christmas two years ago). This morning I grabbed two valencia oranges and squeezed a big glass of juice for me and I was immediately filled with memories and emotions.  Happy. Good. Happy.

As a little girl growing up in Visalia, our orange trees were a big part of our life. We had three orange trees at our house, two navel and one valencia. Navels are good for peeling and eating.  Valencias are the juice oranges, thinner skinned and juicier. The navels would be ripe in winter, and the juice oranges in summer so there were always orange blossoms and bees and we’d try to catch bees in plastic bags and release them again without being stung.

Growing up we climbed the orange trees and picked the fruit off the tree without damaging the new small green oranges growing. I don’t think I appreciated the wonder of having so many fruit trees at our house (peach and apricot, sour cherry and pomegrante) until I grew up and didn’t have them anymore. There’s nothing like fruit just picked from a tree, and oranges have become extra special now that I live in the Pacific Northwest which is apple country but not good for citrus.

I don’t know if its the bright color, the translucent fruit, the sweet tart citrus flavor, but fresh squeezed orange juice seems like one of the most perfect things on earth. Just squeezing the juice this morning made me feel warm, safe, loved. It was such a little thing to do, and yet for a couple minutes I felt fat with happiness.

If only little things could always bring us so much joy.

If only we could remember that joy.


  1. Enjoy your quiet time! I recharge during quiet so that I can handle all the craziness and noise when we are all together.

    I just found out the other night that quite a bit of Twilight was filmed just right down the road from my house! I was living in MT during filming so I was oblivious to the buzz it created here. In fact some of the forest scenes were filmed at Oxbow Park where I first told my husband that I loved him!!

    Orange juice sounds really good right now!

  2. First things first , you are not fat. You are incubating.
    Where I live we have fruit trees. Huge yellow lemons that are wonderful. A satsuma (hope I spelled that right) that is something close to a tangerine but larger, pink grapefriut and the regular kind.
    We are picking them and eating them right now. Yummy. Last year I bought my husband one of those fancy chrome juciers. He loves it.

  3. Oh yea, my daughter who is 17 going on 18 saw Twilight with her girlfriend last night. She thought the film makers stayed pretty true to the book but she said it was a bit cheesy in parts.
    She said there were girls clapping when Edward showed up on screen. The friend sitting next to her didn’t understand why the girls were clapping and Ali had to explain that he was the hero of the movie , “the hot one”. The friend had never read any of the books.

  4. oh i wanna see the movie so bad! but im gonna wait it out for a few weeks… because i hate crowds… im gonna be patient and wait it out… ya… i can do that… i think.

    yum… i love orange juice…

  5. Wow…you could advertise for juicers with this blog! It makes me want to buy a juicer for Christmas this year! I just threw a quiche in the oven for dinner and have been spending the day in watching Lifetime all day…haven’t done that in a really long time. Have seen the trailer about a half dozen times today and am still cheering when it comes on!! My daughter (9yrs old)is now cheering right along with me when she recognized your title. She was so surprised that she just looked at me and her mouth opened but no sound came out for a minute…It was pretty funny. She thinks it is beyond cool that we have met and eaten together not to mention dealt with car trouble. Hope you enjoy your quiet time!! I am a bit jealous right now! I could use some:)

  6. Jane,
    We can and do remember, but then “real” adult life gets in the way. I guess that is why we guard our kids’ happy, innocent times, knowing how things change so quickly once they get older.
    Here in the Northwest, my memory of eating oranges is very different. They were always in toe of our Christmas stockings, a real treasure of sweetness and magical fragrance. Back then, oranges, like so much other fruit, were not available year round or if so, prices were not in reason for my large family. It amazes me to see the exotic fruit available anytime at the supermarket, flown in from around the world and priced to sell. We live in a global economy of abundance, which is a good thing, but it has resulted in taking for granted fruit that used to be special gifts, like those winter oranges and pink grapefruits, citrus fruits foreign to apple country, that Santa delivered by sleigh.

  7. I agree that fresh squeezed oj is definitely one of the best things! I will have to go find my juicer now! As for Twilight..I finished the book last week and now my daughter is reading it. We are going to try and go next week. Enjoy your yourself the next few days, Jane!

  8. Sounds like you got your little bit of sunshine in a glass. Hope that you enjoy the quiet and get a lot written. Have a good week.

  9. jane….enjoy the peace. might take awhile to get use to 🙂 i finished twilight and i am hooked! i am picking the next one up tomorrow.
    i soo love fresh squeezed oj nothing like it..too bad it goes down soo fast.
    happy writing!!!!!!!!!

  10. I spent a couple of years in Arizona when I was a kid… we had so much citrus in our yard. You didn’t even have to go in for breakfast in the mornings… just grab some fruit and keep on playing.

  11. Cindy was right, you could do ads for juicers, and dang if it didn’t sound so good I stopped by the store on the way home from taking my little one to school, and grabbed some oranges. I didn’t do a great job of squeezing, but I what I got was won-der-ful!
    And I didn’t know how much I needed that little bit of sunshine til I drank it. Thanks kiddo. :o)
    Twilight led to Odd Mom Out in weird sort of way, so I am deeply committed to both. I had finished the 3 book series for the 3rd time after my daughter got me hooked. (yeah, I know…) I liked the movie, it was pretty close, but yeah the screaming girls – hmmmm….. lol
    I desperately wanted something else to read, was at the library with my daughter when I spotted OMO on the library’s reader’s choice shelf and was immediately intrigued. I’ve now read everything Jane’s written. Stephanie Meyer and Jane have turned me back on to reading at a time in my life which is not so grand- so I am eternally grateful.
    Thanks again for the sunshine Jane.
    peace out

  12. My youngest daughter likes the satsuma and mandarin oranges they sell in boxes for 6 dollars out here. Every few days we have to buy a new box because she has eaten them all. In California I remember buying them for two dollars a bag from a guy on the corner! But apples…you must try Honeycrisp, Pink Lady and Jazz. All others should be made into sauce! Once I figured out that we spent 500 dolalrs one year on just apples…seriously. Those apples are THAT good. I will never eat a red apple again!!! I think, I am now an apple snob!

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