Book Review: The Nest

With is stylish robin’s egg blue argyle  jacket and its worldwide hype on every list, website, and daytime talk show from here to Timbuktu, Cynthia D’Aprix Sweeney’s The Nest was worth a shot when I found it discounted at my local BJ’s Wholesale Club.

Now don’t get the wrong impression by that last statement. Plenty a worthy novel has graced the book department of  BJ’s. And, while I was not impressed enough to deem it worthy of any more accolades, The Nest, was a  fairly light and entertaining read.

The Nest chronicles the dysfunctional lives of the Plumb siblings. Their dysfunction stems mainly from their dependency on an inheritance that they have yet to be bequeathed. All of them have lived beyond their means for too long, banking on the fact that when their youngest sibling turns 40 they will have access to a momentous sum of money left behind by their late father. However, when one of them gets into a sticky situation, he puts them all in jeopardy of  losing their long awaited endowment.

So, reasons why I liked the book:

A) It was written well


Yeah that’s all I got. The book was a light read and written well enough that it kept me entertained, but the characters are un-relatable, pretentious rich “kids” who are crying into their Cheerios over money they never had.  And besides that, the characters don’t even lead interesting lives. They are just hanging by a thread worrying their days away, trying to dig themselves out of holes they created, when they realize there is a good chance they will not be coming into a windfall.

Maybe I judged this one a bit harder than necessary because of all the hype and the fact that I was left wondering where it all came from. But overall, I would have to give The Nest a 3 out of 5.



Back to the Future

Have you ever wondered what your life will be like in the future? OK, who am I kidding? We all anxiously wait on edge for what our future will bring because we just know it will hold the next big thing; the moment that will change our lives forever. But, have you ever put all your big dreams aside and thought what your every day life in the future will be like? Like in 25 years? In 25 years I will be sitting on the edge of 50 and I hope it reads something like this:

Hilary is rushing around upstairs. I can hear the uneven click of mismatched high heeled shoes on the hardwoods above me, as she tries to decide what shoes to wear. Thankfully she  already bought a new dress months ago and will not have to decide what to wear. This was a vital decision despite the fact that no one will even see the dress under her robe, but like mother like daughter, and really, you only graduate high school once, right? The door handle turns as I continue to sip my tea and read the paper.

Rise and shine and give God the glory glory, rise and shine and give God the glory glory!” my husband playfully booms as he comes through the kitchen with an athletic bag and our 12 year old in tow.

“Well good morning to you too!” I say as I stand to give him a hug and a kiss, “Judging by that kind of enthusiasm, I can only guess the game went well?” They are just coming in from an early morning soccer game, which I was able to excuse myself from as I had to stay home and make sure the girls didn’t kill each other in their preparations for the big day. In reality I slept in, blatantly shirking my “Soccer Mom” duties. I love my little Lennon, but 7am soccer on a Saturday is really a rough go, even for the players.

“We won 6-2!” Lennon announces proudly, pulling a Gatorade from the fridge.

“Lennon really hustled today. No goals scored, but he is really holding his own as a defenseman,” my husband boasts.

“Well I’m happy to hear it. Now would you boys like me to make you some eggs while you go clean up? We have a pretty full day ahead of us.”

“Do I really need to wear a suit? Lennon whines, “It’s so hot today!”

“You’re just sweaty from the game. Plus, the ceremony is indoors where there will be air conditioning. And I would stop whining if you are still counting on getting some eggs. And, just a warning, I would choose the downstairs bathroom to shower in if I were you. Otherwise you will probably encounter WWIII if you go upstairs right now.”

Seriously? They have been up there since we left this morning.”

“Patience my son. Someday you will be a wise man and appreciate the care taken to produce a beautiful rose,” my husband says in his best Mr. Miyagi voice. I laugh as he steals my paper and sits down across from me. The random bursts of singing, the goofy voices; my husband remind me so much of my dad sometimes. I suppose it is why I married him.

Lennon heads off to shower as I get up to cook eggs.

“Can you believe our baby girl is 18 and graduating from high school?” I say nostalgically.

It’s hard to believe none of our babies are babies anymore,” my husband says.

You’re telling me. Aubrey is up there probably creating a beauty product tornado, and you want to know why? She has her eye on one of the boys in Hilary’s class!”

“As in her senior graduating class? She is 14, what does she think an 18 year old boy with one foot out the door, on his way to college wants with a girl not even in high school yet?”

I shake my head. I am as puzzled as he is. Aubrey is definitely going to be the child that ruffles our feathers in her teen years. We had gotten through virtually unscathed with Hilary. She has a passion for playing the piano and writing music that has kept her fairly occupied throughout high school.  It is too soon to tell with Lennon, but right now he remains sweet, fun-loving, and too interested in building with LEGOs to concern himself with trouble.

But Aubrey is a feisty one. She seems to enjoy turning everything into a debate, especially when it comes to her curfew and where she is allowed to go after school. She likes trying to debate that it is perfectly normal for her to “just chill” with her friends at the 7-11. I’m not buying it.

I hear footsteps coming down the stairs and I pray it is one of the girls dressed and ready to go. It is already 10:15 and we need to be at the school at 12:00.

“Mom, which shoes?”

It is Hilary, but unfortunately her hair is still in a towel and her makeup is only done on one side of her face.

“I like the silver ones, sweetie.”

” Are you just saying that because they have a lower heel?”

“No!” Yes.

“Thanks. Are those eggs I smell?”

“Sorry no eggs for anyone until they are properly styled. Go fix your hair and then we’ll talk eggs. And, how is your sister doing?”

“Well, she stole my blue dress and she is hogging the curling iron. But, she does seem to be in a chippier mood since she got a text from Morgan, whose brother is on the football team with Nico, who is this kid in her Physics class that she has a crush on, and Morgan said that  her brother said, that Nico said he thinks she is cute. But then she OMG’d and knock over her nail polish onto the rug which totally set her off. So all things considered, I think we are looking at a B- kind of mood from her today.”

My head is spinning as my husband looks up from the newspaper and declares, “Uh-uh! B- isn’t going to cut it today. Please excuse me while I go iron my suit and swiftly kick our daughter in the ass.”

“Thank you!” I smile sweetly.

“Also, I expect us all back here in 20 minutes ready to eat our eggs and go,” he announces.

“Not a problem!” Lennon pipes in. He has returned, suited up, with not a grass stain in sight.

“Well don’t you look handsome! Let me take a picture!” He waves me off as he starts to dig in to the first order of eggs.

It is still so hard to believe that I have reached this moment in my life. It seems like just yesterday I was in my 20’s grumbling about the “hardships of adult life.” Who would have thought I would actually make it to this joyful, fulfilling, happy time in my life.

The the girls are finally entering the kitchen with their father following behind making trumpet sounds to the tune of pomp and circumstance. Hilary is fully decked out in her graduation gear beaming from ear to ear. I can’t help but do the same as I thankfully look at the wonderful present that I could never have dreamed of when thinking about the future.