Friday, December 25, 2009

Christmas, happiness and priorities

Three years in a row now I've spent Christmas in either a funeral home or a hospital room. Obviously not for myself, in the case of the funeral home.
I do a lot of whineing in my life.
And yes, I'm a little too emo for my own good.
But sitting here, in a hospital room on christmas day, I'm content.

I'm content because everyone is going to be ok.
I'm content because I get to watch my husband who really is at his very best when he's needed.
I'm content because at the end of the day, it's not about where you are but about who you are with.

So no emo mood music today. No depressing rants. Just a deep contentment that everything is going to be ok.

In the end, that's all that matters.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Mood Music: This week the Trend

And I just want to get mugged at knifepoint
to get cut enough to wake me up
cause I know that I don't want to die
sitting around watching my life go by
and what we take from this is what we'll get and we haven't quite figured it out just yet
because all of us are all too stuck
strapped to a chair watching our lives blow up
stuck watching our lives blow up
- Reliant K

When the heck did I become an EMO? Seriously, if I were ten years younger I would fit right in with the high school emo kids.
Maybe I've always had a bit of a depressed personality but really I only get that way when I'm stressed out or extremely introspective. Although, with the way I choose to live my life lately, that's about 90% of the time.
I guess I feel a little stuck lately. My other mood music choice was Dare you to Move by Switchfoot because I feel like I need a kick in the rear lately to get me moving. My PhD applications are in though and that may also be the source of my stress.
I never, ever feel like I'm good enough. I never feel like I have enough to offer. Freaking years of counseling haven't taken that away.

Yup. Definately way too emo for my own good today.

Sunday, December 20, 2009

Mood Music: Innocent by Our Lady Peace

Oh, Tina's losing faith in what she knows
Hates her music, hates all of her clothes
Dreams of surgery and a new nose
Every calories a war
While she wishes she was a dancer
and that she never heard of cancer
She wishes God would give her some answers
and make her feel beautiful


I find it's a good idea to let go and lose yourself every once in a while. I think that's where I've been for some time but things are starting to become a little clearer again.

The question becomes, will I find myself the same person as I left behind? I hope not. I hope I find myself someone else, not out of an objection to who I was before but because if I'm the same, what was the point?

Let's try and set some personal goals again, shall we?

Meh, I suck at setting and keeping personal goals. I am the first person you want on your side if there is a deadline to meet and the last person you want if it's a project that needs to be done...whenever. Quite frankly, whenever is like tomorrow in my world: it never comes.

So here I am again, but maybe this time I'll try setting mini goals. Not like - "loose 15 pounds" but "get your butt out of bed and do yoga so your back doesn't hurt so much."

Actually, I think I'm going to try to start with "put two things in the box to take to goodwill everyday this week." Seriously, our apartment is a pit right now and half of it is because we have too much stuff. Way too much stuff. I rant on and on how I'm tired of junk, how I really would prefer to just skip the material goods presents this year for Christmas and then I go and plan another yarn order. Yup, I'm slightly hypocritical but I am tired of not having a place for everything in my apartment.

So once again, it's time to pass some of it on to someone else who could use it. It's time to let go and make more room in my house for...moving? Sitting? Breathing?

Let's see how mini goals work for me this time.

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

Two posts in one day, who would have thunk...

I write stories online. No you can't have the link. If you know anything about my online life, you may be able to find it but I guarantee nothing. I'm too embarassed to share my stuff with real people, you know, people I actually know. So if you find it, please don't tell me.

I came across someone else's profile today while looking for new stories to read online and they had my story listed under "Great Stories." It was so cool. I know I have a few consistent readers but it was nice to see someone is really enjoying it.
Then I got "recognized" when I told someone about it. They typed SQUEEE! for me!

It was very cool. I'm not sure much of this made sense to anyone who doesn't live in my head but it made my day.

My life today in song lyrics

Break your neck for some substance,
This is temporary sanity, an exercise in vanity
So long, to this ordinary day wrought with
fictitious tales of how there's any other way
Hold on to anything at all
It's a long way down...

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Barsippa and trafe da'at

Ah, the pull of complex words has called to me again.
Last saturday, Phillip and I headed to chattanooga and hung out with Darrell. One of the things we did was head to the sculpture garden in Little Italy up by Rembrandts. Some of it was odd, some of it was pretty cool. One piece called to me in particular.

It's called Borsippa and I wish now I had taken a picture. I may have to make it a point to go back and do that. The only one I can find online is here:

The picture doesn't do it justice. The metal is textured and every piece almost looks like it's in motion. It's chaotic, but seems to be moving.
Borsippa was an ancient city in what is now Iraq. It has a ziggurat and is believed by some to be the Tower of Babel.

Confusion in the sculpture make sense much? From a place that once held peace, Chaos emerged and changed everything. But in the chaos a beauty is found because it enabled us to spread into the diverse and wonderful world that we have now.
It took chaos first.

Trafe da'at is a herbrew term meaning "of a torn mind." I find myself living with a torn mind, living in the chaos that I'm hoping something beautiful will come out of. There is too much going on in my head, too much going on in my life and I find that nothing I'm doing is coming out as anything worthwhile. I'm looking at the world through a shattered pane of glass.

My mind needs to stop being so torn. I need to learn to let go. But letting go isnt' always easy. You will only change when the pain of changing becomes less than the pain of staying the same.

I think I might have hit that wall.

I'm tired of being trafe da'at.

Tuesday, August 11, 2009

Today I...

...started applications for PhD programs online. I'm not sure if I'm happy, hyperventilating or finally ready to admit to my own insanity.

You may now return to your regularly scheduled program.

Monday, July 13, 2009

Goals to simplify and actually get stuff done!

Whew, okay time for a blog overhaul.

First, I got rid of the list of 1001 things that I'd probably never get around to anyway. I also put my crafting lists on the side so I don't have to post dumb to do lists every three days to keep myself straight, same with books.

I'm going to try to get myself down to working on five projects and reading five books at a time, maximum. I need to finish 4 projects in order to get there though! Ah well, it'll get done.

Friday, July 10, 2009

Warning: slightly melodramatic post ahead

This is my craft cabinet. The drawer is also very full and this is only 1 of 4 totally overflowing areas where I keep my supplies. You should see my clothing to remake and my material stash. The lid would literally fly off if I opened it wrong. I find myself highly dissatisfied with my life right now and it's a dissatisfaction of my own making. I have things I should be doing: studying for the GRE, working on my French, and a hundred other practical things that Iknow I need to do, heck, even want to do. I find myself utterly distracted by things that don't matter.

My brain feels like my craft cabinet right now. I feel like I have too much stuff in it. I feel like I'm doing too much, committing to too much, and thereby accomplishing nothing. My problem is that the things that are important keep getting sidetracked by the things that really aren't, or shouldn't be at any rate.

Maybe my dissatisfcation with the state of my crafting stash has more to do with my brain than my stuff.

Tuesday, June 30, 2009

I hearby declare July my month to finish things

I have too much half done stuff in my life right now and I keep starting new things. In the month of July I'm going to try and finish things.

1. Knitting and crochet projects. I'm not going to cast on or start anything new unless it's for my House Cup team cause I can't let my team down!
List of to do's:
A. Cabled Purse
B. Soap Sacks
C. Versatility
D. Stuffed Tiger
E. Luna Lovegood's cardigan
F. Houndstooth Scarf
G. A couple of dishclothes I'm already committed to making
I know there is more but I can't think of any at the moment!
2. Books I'm reading.
A. Dresden Files Book 1
B. Dracula
C. The Shack
D. Love is...
E. Once again, I'm sure at least 4-5 more books.
3. TV series. Phillip is buying new seasons and I haven't finished the last ones!
A. Smallville
B. Stargate Atlantis
4. I want to get caught up on my routines. All things due today and one that was due previously and I should make good progress.
I think that's it for now.

Wish me luck. Maybe I'll actually update this list at some point so I can track my progress.

Monday, June 29, 2009

My life of unending lists continues

To Do:
1. Make a bobble dishcloth. Need to do that tonite so I can post pics tomorrow.
2. Take pics of the progress I've made on my versatility so I can at least get partial points for it. Due tomorrow.
3. Finish knitting purse. I need to be done this by wednesday at the latest so I can line it and seam it this weekend. I have to mail it off next week.
4. I think I'm doing a soapholder thingy. Hard to explain. Due sunday night as well.
5. Finish my wrist warmers. Due July 15th. I'm mostly done one except for seaming. I just need to do the second.
6. New classes for my House Cup will be posted wednesday. We'll see how this goes!!!

The never ending list continues, why do I do this to myself?

Friday, June 26, 2009

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Things I'm trying to do in my life right now...

1. Work two jobs. Six days a week, baby!
2. Build a JV ministry at our church. I just need a room, a wednesday night volunteer and ability to actually get ahold of my senior pastor.
3. Organize a swap online. That one's not too bad.
4. Participate in two swaps online. Things are starting to get a little heavier
5. Study for the GRE and put together PhD applications. sigh...
6. Write a story. We'll see how that goes. I'm not much of a story writer.
7. Master knitting cables. This one is going well! Cables really aren't all that difficult.
8. Ocassionally get some sleep.
9. Have some sort of a social life.
10. Figure out what's wrong with me. Surgery probably the next step.

I'm a little overbooked, a little stressed but having a ton of fun. Who knew?

Friday, June 12, 2009

Projects update while I'm at it.

1. 2 broomstick lace scarves (for different swap)- Done! But no pics because I forgot to take them before I packaged them up. Hopefully my partner will post pics and I can theive them from her.

3. Heart square (for quidditch)- Due July 1
4. HufflePuff wristwarmers (for quidditch)- Due July 15
5. Finish versatility (for Defense against the Dark Arts)- Due June 30. Making some progress. I need to buy buttons for it before I can finish but I've probably got about 2 more weeks of knitting before that happens!
6. Make a Nintendo DS cozy (Muggle Studies) - about a third done. Shouldn't be too much longer on it.
7. Mug Cozy (for Divination)- Due June 30

My craft supplies, my consumerism and my own self-disgust

Anybody ever get tired of stuff? I mean really tired of stuff? has three definitions for consumerism:
1. a modern movement for the protection of the consumer against useless, inferior, or dangerous products, misleading advertising, unfair pricing, etc.
2. the concept that an ever-expanding consumption of goods is advantageous to the economy.
3. the fact or practice of an increasing consumption of goods.

One is a good thing. People need protection of some sort.
Two is a economic theory. Fairly neutral in and of itself.
Three is the one I'm having issues with.

It's not even that my own consumption of goods is out of control. We don't have any credit card debt or car payments. We are not running out of money before we run out of month, although some months it can be close. We manage to put a little into savings for a rainy day. We are not in any kind of financial trouble currently.

It's just a whole list of little things that are bothering me. Like how fast the trashcan fills up with stuff that I know if just going to a landfill. How often I trip over things in our apartment because I didn't put them away becasue they don't really have a proper spot to put them. I could say that our apartment was just too small but stuff always seems to expand to fill the available space. It's how many projects I could make with my available supplies and how often I buy new supplies anyway. It's just all this...stuff.

I think that's the main reason I've been trying to destash. I'm just tired of stuff. I'm tired of how much room it takes and how much mental energy I put into it. I'm tired of buying something, getting it home and really having nothing to do with it or having it sit for months before I even look at it again. I'm tired of little purchases eating up my discretionary funds. I'm just tired. But then I hit the store to get something I need and something shiny grabs my attention and I find myself with another new thing at home that I could just have easily done without.

I need to stop. And I need to stop now before my own habits get away from me.

Wednesday, June 10, 2009

Destashing in progress

Well, I didn't make it to June 20th before buying supplies. However, I did just buy supplies for a swap that I committed to before putting a moritorium on my supplies. All I purchased was for the swap, nothing extra even though I have Michael's coupons this week.

My husband however, has been adding to my scrapbooking stuff because he wants to make an album and his stuff just goes in with mine. All my attempts are being thwarted!

Slowly but surely, I will get my craft crap under control!!!

Friday, June 5, 2009

Finally finished 1 swap, 2 more to go!!!

1. Finish knitted toys (for swap) - Done!!!

2. 2 broomstick lace scarves (for different swap)- about a quarter of the way through the first one.
3. Heart square (for quidditch)- Due July 1
4. HufflePuff wristwarmers (for quidditch)- Due July 15
5. Finish versatility (for Defense against the Dark Arts)- Due June 30. Making some progress. I need to buy buttons for it before I can finish but I've probably got about 2 more weeks of knitting before that happens!
6. Make a Palm Pilot cozy (for Muggle Studies) - Due June 30
7. Mug Cozy (for Divination)- Due June 30

Oh, here are the coasters I finished a few days ago:

Easy Peasy. 4 movie backer cards from blockbuster, plastic canvas to add stability in the middle, felt on the bottom. Cover backer cards with clear contact paper to make the water resistant, blanket stitch the outsides. I'm very pleased with how they turned out!!

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

Lists, lists and more lists

1. Finish knitted toys (for swap) - Done!!! Pics soon. Lost my jump drive so as soon as it turns up I'll get them uploaded.
2. Finished crocheted pillow (for swap) - Project abandoned.
3. 2 broomstick lace scarves (for different swap)- Bought yarn
4. Heart square (for quidditch)
5. HufflePuff wristwarmers (for quidditch)
6. Finish versatility (for Defense against the Dark Arts)
7. Make a Palm Pilot cozy (for Muggle Studies)
8. Mug Cozy (for Divination)

Not much of an update but it helps keep me sane!

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Here we go again with the todo lists!

I joined the Harry Potter Knit and Crochet House Cup over on Ravelry. The term runs for three months and new classes are started the first of every month. It's a lot of fun but I keep adding little projects in order to fit the classes. It's a nice way to destash though!

Project list for this month (hopefully in order of importance).
1. Finish knitted toys (for swap)
2. Finished crocheted pillow (for swap)
3. 2 broomstick lace scarves (for different swap)
4. Heart square (for quidditch)
5. HufflePuff wristwarmers (for quidditch)
6. Finish versatility (for Defense against the Dark Arts)
7. Make a Palm Pilot cozy (for Muggle Studies)
8. Mug Cozy (for Divination)

Saturday, May 30, 2009

I suck at destashing and project updates...

I forgot that I commited to another small personal swap and I don't have the yarn for it so I'm having to order some orange and green wool. Does this count since I did this before I said I was on a craft supplies diet? Probably. Oh well, I've also decided that it doesn't count if my mom gave it to me. So all the paper, album and stickers I'm bringing home don't count. Listen to my loud justifications!

I do have a progress report though.

1. Dots blanket:Done! I absoluately love it. It is for a swap though so it'll be in the mail on tuesday or wednesday and on it's way to my partner.

2. Knitted toys: 1 down, 2 to go. I'll be done by tuesday night. It's for the swap as well.
3. Finish coasters - Done, no pics since I forgot.
4. Crochet roses - Done, but I knit it instead. For some reason I really hate crocheting small items but don't mind knitting them.

5. Crochet pillow - Not going to get done. It was for the swap but I went a different direction instead.

Current top 5 to-do:
1. Two broomstick lace scarves: Need to get the yarn ordered.
2. Fingerless gloves
3. Heart square
4. Wedding album
5. versatility

Here's to actually getting to do lists done!

Friday, May 22, 2009

Top 5 projects to finish

In honour of my attempting to do some downsizing of my massive craft pile, I present my top 5 needing to work on projects!

1. Dots blanket - I should actually be finished this one tonite. I need to be done it by sunday morning
2. Knitted toys - I have two I need to do by June 1
3. Finish coasters - hopefully tonite
4. Crochet roses - once again, hopefully tonite or tomorrow.
5. Crochet pillow

Some of these are swap items and some of them are for the Harry Potter Knit and Crochet House Cup on Ravelry. It's a ton of fun! Anyway, just narrowing down the list for myself. Hopefully I'll have knocked out 3 of the 5 in the next two days.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Seriously bored, enter the writing prompts!

Slow day at work and I'm getting antsy but have nothign interesting to blog about to enter the writing prompts

mindbump suggested by Testube

"Describe your most embarrassing musical purchase. What's hidden in your skeleton CD rack?"

Can I confess to my husband's hidden skeleton first? He has 2 Hilary Duff CD's.
Okay, now back to mine.

All through high school I was one of the teenagers that said that they hated pop. I went to high school in the boy band, pop princess era. Britney Spears came out when I was in 11th grade along with Christina Aguilera. Also popular were N'Sync and the Backstreet boys. Verbally I loathed them, but really in my heart I really liked them! Never huge into Britney but I did like Christina quite a bit. However, my hidden skeleton in my CD case is my Backstreet boys greatest Hits CD that I do still pull out from time to time. It's catchy, it's bubbly and yes, it's very embarassing. But admit it, there was at least on of their songs that you liked too, right?

Wednesday, May 20, 2009

Here I am again

I think I have internet ADD. I start something, go strong for about a month or so and then quit. I did this with my 1001 list. I'm only slowly working on it now. I also did this with my reading 52 books this year. I've kind of fizzled out of that one in the last couple of weeks. I still have plenty of time to get it done and probably will eventually but I'm not focused on it right now. Oh well, at least I'm having a good time with it!

My current direction is because I spend way too much on crafting supplies. I can list probably 25 projects that I have all the stuff for. Wait, let's see if I can do it.
1. Versatility
2. Sage Diamond wrap
3. memory wire bracelets
4. Luna Lovegood's cardigan
5. felted roses
6. felted boxes
7. leftover swap hat
8. wedding scrapbook
9. Movie journals
10. Movie coasters
11. pencil holder
12. crochet hook case
15. needle roll
16. scraps blanket (not sure if I have enough for this one)
17. caliometry
18. Serpentine fingerless gloves
19. Huffllepuff wristwarmers
20. Heart square
21. Felted coasters
22. shirt to dress
23. bleached t-shirts
24. Handled purse
25. Dishclothes (probably enough cotton for 15-20 of them)
26. houndstooth scarf
27. Anthropologie inspired caplet

That was without looking at my project list or stash. I need to get this project mess under control!!! My current goal is, after tonite, not to buy any supplies for at least 1 month. I want to go longer than that but I figure if I goal 1 month it's a little more doable at first. I say after tonite because I have to pick up two balls of yarn to finish projects for other people. I am hereby on a supply buying fast from tomorrow until June 20th. Wish me Luck!

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

101 Update, sorry it's been awhile!

Okay, here is an official update on where I am with the 101 in 1001. I've decided to make some changes and I've finally made some progress getting some more things off the list!

30. Go one week without coffee.
Done! As of today I am 8 days coffee free and still feeling a slight headache everyday. I gave it up for lent so I have quite a few more days to go. Okay, technically I had decaf last night but since the idea was to give up my morning coffee caffiene addiction, I'm calling it done!

53. Reduce debt load by 25%
Sitting somewhere between 11-12% currently. Hopefully we'll be able to hit 25% by the end of the year.

57. Go to the dentist for a checkup and cleaning
Have I communicated how much I hate the dentist? The numbing agent doesn't work on me properly so I still feel quite a bit of pain when they are working on my teeth. Hate it. Sigh. Went in for a first concultation with a new dentist and now I have to be numbed up for a "deep cleaing" on the 11th. So not a happy camper here.

59. Renew Passport
Done but it was a painfully long process.

68. Buy a new PDA
Done! I bought a palm centro. Love it!!!!

92. Read 50 books and journal about them.
I'm changing this to reading 52 books and I'm not worrying about the journalling. I'm up to 14 this year so far.

Hmm, I think that's it for now!!

Friday, February 6, 2009

Writing Assignment 2: Crossing Genres, story 1

This assignment is all about crossing genres in writing.
Step 1: Pick a short story topic. (ie walking to the store, going to class, picking up milk)
Step 2: Pick two or three genres of writing style (ie romance, horror, fantasy, mystery, humor, etc.)
Step 3: Write your short story in the style of each of those genres.

Fumbling with hands overfilled with trash bags, she finally managed to get the door open and walked out into the impeccably kept front yard. Her front yard, she smiled. There was very little that brought her more joy than that front yard except for maybe her back yard. It looked like something taken from one of those ridiculously expensive home and garden magazines. In fact, on several occasions in the last few months she had been approached by those very magazines but had always turned them down. She didn’t need any prying eyes in her garden.
She walked with her trash bags down the river rock path past the red, yellow and white roses, past the lilac bushes and the small pond where the overly large goldfish lived, smiling in wonder at her good fortune as she went. She would never get used to this perfect little world belonging only to her. She reached the front curb, set down the trash and opened up her tiny vine-covered shed. Crap, she thought, not again. The trashcan was gone. The shed had been specifically built to hold, and hide, the trashcan was once again empty. She sighed wondering what they had done with it this time. Leaving her trash bags on the curb, she walked around the house towards the woods. It was probably back there again.
It had been almost six months ago when she took that fateful hike into the wood surrounding her house. It was like any other hike until after about a half hour, she sat down on a log to rest and saw it. Okay, not it but her. Lying on the far end of the log was a tiny little woman with wings. A pixie maybe? Or a fairy? She couldn’t be sure, it’s not like she had any experience with this sort of thing. At any rate, she watched the creature for some time, mostly trying to be sure she wasn’t hallucinating, and eventually noticed that she seemed hurt. She moved carefully over to the trembling creature and picked her up in her hands. The fairy pointed to the south, away from where civilization was. Understanding that the fairy was asking for her help, she started off in that direction. They hiked through the woods until they came across a low flat rock. Following the fairies instructions, she set the fairy down and headed for home, wondering if she imagined the entire thing.
Two days later, it started. It was so slow that it would likely have remained unnoticed for sometime if her trashcan hadn’t gone missing. In her futile search for the trashcan, she began to notice other changes. Someone had cleaned scum out of her pond, and where did that little bush come from? Her rarely used rusty garden tools were all clean and shiny. Weird. She started to keep watch over her garden and bought a new trashcan. Two days later, it too was gone but there were now rosebushes up the side of her house. What was going on? But then she saw them. Small, quiet and almost unnoticeable were the fairies cleaning her yard, rearranging her tools and coaxing beautiful plants from seeds. Slowly, her unkempt and ignored yard became a thing of beauty. Her only guess is that the fairies were grateful to her for returning their friend but she couldn’t ever be sure. They never came near her but she often saw them happily puttering around the garden, making everything beautiful. The only downside was the trashcan.
She had bought a little shed to put it in after the fourth one went missing. This didn’t stop them from disappearing but seemed to reduce the frequency of it. These fairies apparently did not like trashcans and would take any opportunity to get rid of it. Whether it was the smell, sight or simply the thought of trash that disgusted them, she would probably never know. Looking around her garden before she stepped into the woods to search for it, she decided it didn’t matter. She would deal with this annoyance in exchange for the most beautiful garden she had ever seen.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009


I was called morally reprehensible today. I thought I was the only one who used those terms. Anyway, it's not been a good day.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Writing assignment

Okay, okay. I know when an assignment is given you don't have to do it this second. But I had this stuck in my head once I heard the assignment and I figured that if I got it out, I might have time to do a second one, but do a story which is more difficult for me than this introspective crap I'm about to post.

The Assignment:
Let’s start our writing off with some sap, shall we?
In this writing assignment, it’s all about beginnings. There’s a moment in any relationship where the excitement of a romance truly starts. It might be the first sight, the first kiss, the first shared meal…or something far less cliché. Your first assignment is to write a story centered around that moment.

What Was His Name?

Two years older than I was, muscular and definitely forbidden fruit, his name was Nick. Truthfully, I don’t know if I had ever noticed him in a romantic way before that moment. He was, as I said, completely off-limits. One should never date a friend’s ex-boyfriend, not if you want the friendship to survive anyway. But as we sat on the park swings that evening, stars shining, wrapped in our own little bubble, I didn’t care. It didn’t matter that she lived just down the block and could walk out any moment and see us sitting here. It didn’t matter that I’d have to go to school with her everyday for the next year and a half. It didn’t matter that I’d probably have to be the one to tell her. All that mattered was that his deep brown eyes were telling me the same thing his words were: He wanted me. When you fit the stereotype of “Sweet Sixteen and never been kissed,” - scratch that – how about “Sweet Sixteen and never even been asked on a date” it’s fairly difficult to turn down the offer of a gorgeous, steady boyfriend, no matter who it’s going to hurt. So I didn’t turn him down. I felt the warmth, the electricity, all the way to my toes: He wanted me. Eventually the relationship went to the graveyard of fondly remembered first loves, but that moment, the zing of electricity was one I’d never forget.

I don’t remember the first words he said to me. They could have been complete gibberish and it wouldn’t have matter because I wouldn’t have noticed. His name was Clint. The first time his bright blue eyes, always twinkling with laughter, met mine, I was hooked. Going to my miserable and boring job was suddenly the highlight of my day because at least, maybe, if I was lucky, I’d be working with Clint. He came by my station often, to talk and to flirt. He made me feel beautiful, interesting and wanted at a time when I was broken and defeated from a horribly bad break-up. Eventually it came out that he had a girlfriend and my opinion of him dropped substantially as I was never one to knowing flirt with someone who was taken. If only my brain could have managed to convince my knees not to go weak every time I saw him go by.

It was the same boring job, some months later on an incredibly busy day. Cart after cart of groceries were backed up at my register and I was working as quickly as I could. Strangely, in the middle of my long line-up of middle aged women with overflowing carts, was a guy my age holding a single carton of milk. His name was Tyler. “You don’t remember me, do you?” he asked when I’d eventually managed work my line down to him. No, I didn’t remember but then that summer when I was 13 and paying much more attention to his friend Matt came back to me. “Would you like to go for coffee sometime, just to catch-up?” Without thinking a single romantic or date related thing about it, I gave him my phone number. A few days later and somewhere around hour three of sitting together in a nearly empty Pizza Hut discussing our mutual love of all things Star Trek, it hit me that this might actually be a date in his mind. Looking into his confident green eyes, I hoped it was. Some months later we decided it was better for us to be friends than to be together but at least we’d always have Pizza Hut.

While I was pretending to study one evening in the college library, a friend who was severely annoyed with me bugging her while she tried to actually study, introduced me to him. His name was Emmanuel. Infectious laughter emanated from his brown eyes as we joked about being pawned off because we were both bored. Attraction was nearly instantaneous. We read the same authors, studied the same subjects and spoke with an easy rhythm of people who had known each other their whole lives. He was crazy about me from the first moment, an attraction, that although flattering was intimidating to me in its strength and eventually we drifted into just being friends and then into nothing at all.

It was my masters level Greek class, the most feared and hated subject in the whole school that had just started its first day. He sat two seats down from me, his name was Phillip. During a break, the man sitting between us left the room and Phillip and I fell into conversation. We both liked coffee and sci-fi. We were both intimidated by the class even though the professor seemed very approachable. I looked into his blue eyes and felt…nothing. Sure, he was cute but there was no hint of any spark, no sudden pulse quickening, and no beginnings of attraction. He was in several of my classes and for the next few months we had study groups together and quite often found ourselves out with the same group of people. We were never intentionally together but found ourselves falling into a comfortable friendship nonetheless. He was sweet and calming, someone easy to talk to, but in that brother kind of way. One day, after a particularly disastrous study group that ended up with just the two of us being left by ourselves, he asked if I wanted to go grab Chinese. There was nothing unusual about it except that on this occasion it happened to be just the two of us. The food was good but nothing else about lunch was exceptional, nothing out of the ordinary. Then, as he was driving me back to my place, his sunglasses slide down his nose and his bright, beautiful, expressive blue eyes stared into mine. At that moment I could not have put my finger on what had changed, except now instead of holding easy conversation, my heart was pounding, my head felt light and his proximity to me in the car was palpable. Feeling slightly tipsy, I said goodbye, got out of the car and decided to say nothing at all to anyone about my new found attraction to my friend.

Fate though, has a way of working things out. A nosy friend, a shy conversation about attractions and a quick two years later found me walking down the aisle to meet him at the front of the church. There would be no other names to add to the list and no more first moments of attraction but I found myself more than ok with that. The first moment of attraction was always what pulled me into a relationship. The thrill of new love was what appealed to me and when the thrill died in me, the relationship often did as well. But with Phillip, it was different. The thrill of attraction was still there and still so sweet as new relationship usually are but the difference this time was that I think I loved him before I ever found that moment. Slowly, throughout our months as friends I found myself admiring his character, his compassion for people and his gentle way of dealing with things. I had already found out where we liked the same things and, more importantly, where we wanted the same things out of life. Long before the thrill of romantic attraction set in, I had already discovered that he was the kind of man who would support me in my dreams and goals, who would be a good Father to my children and would take commitment seriously in the same way I did. So when the thrill of the new relationship started to fade away as it always does, it didn’t matter to me. With a solid relationship comes new thrills and they come with the security of familiarity and the safety of the comfortable. It may not be Fourth of July fireworks anymore but it’s a slow burning fireplace instead. I traded the thrill of new discovery for the steady burning embers of ever growing love. The other names I will always remember fondly as each taught me something about life and about myself but I leave the list behind with no regrets or remorse. Because in the end, it was only one name that I was looking for, and that name was Phillip.

Life's too short...

1. Life is too short to knit with yarn you don't like. So I threw out the rest of my fun fur. I hate working with it, so I'm not going to make myself anymore.
2. Life is too short to read books that you are not enjoying. So I'm putting down the hobbit. I know I enjoyed it last time but I'm bored now. I'll leave my bookmark in and then if I ever change my mind and want to finish it, I'll know where I was.
3. Life is too short to not indulge every aspect of your personality now and again. I admit it. I like wearing office wear. I like to look pulled together first thing in the morning. I used to not care but honestly, I kind of find getting ready in the morning fun now. Dang it, I even like my glasses. They give me a new look, I feel punkrockish stylish. I think they are fun. Even if I could afford contacts right now, I probably wouldn't wear them much. I like rockin my new look. I have a shallow side and I'm enjoying it right now.
4. Life is too short to worry about things that are out of your control. To that end, I've stopped watching the news. I can't change the economic situation and I'm not going to let it stress me out. So long as I'm employed, my personal economy is doing ok.
5. Life is too short to spend your time not being yourself. I don't know what happened to me. I used to be louder, more outspoken and quite frankly, more fun. I miss that. I went to Grad school and became much more serious. I miss kicking back. I miss having an active social life. I miss Drama and I miss Dance. I miss the freedom they gave me. I'm going to get some of that back.
6. Life's too short to spend time being angry. Long story with this one, and I'm not sure how to change it but decided that I have too. No details at this time.
7. Life is too short to stay estranged from people. Sometimes estrangement just happens. Nobody is upset, no falling out occured but there is distance anyway. It's never too late to change that.

Monday, January 19, 2009

Lots of little goal updates

Goal 92: Read 52 books and journal about them.

1. Twilight by Stephenie Meyer
2. New Moon by Stephenie Meyer
3. Eclipse by Stephenie Meyer
4. Breaking Dawn by Stephenie Meyer
5. Blood Rites by Jim Butcher
6. Neverwhere by Neil Gaiman
When I was a teenager I used to read a graphic novel series called Sandman. I loved it. I found the story lines interesting, I found the graphics amazing, in short it was the only comic I ever collected with any sort of enthusiasm. I don't know why it's taken me almost 10 years to discover that the author of those graphic novels is also an author of books. Better late then never, I suppose. I picked up a copy of his "Neverwhere" from the library and if I'm reading the reviews right, it was his first novel and was compared to a modern darker Alice in Wonderland. It's a fair comparison I think. In the first couple of chapters the main character, Richard comes across a girl covered in blood who has just fallen out of a doorway. He takes her home because she begs him not to take her to a hospital. It turns out that this girl is from "London Below" instead of "London above" and the interactions with her make him as though he didn't exist in his former life anymore. London Below is where the people who fall through the cracks live - the homeless that people don't see, the useless to society that people don't even notice anymore - and once you get there, there's no going back. Richard falls from his comfortable boring life working in the insurance industry to a world where people speak to rats, markets never take place in the same place twice and people you used to know look right through you and cannot remember who you are. He ends up following around Door, the girl he helped, and joins her in trying to figure out who killed her family. It's a tale full of beasts, sewer people, rats, a man coming back from the dead, something akin to vampires and an entire world that takes place right in front of, but not seen, by normal Londoners.
I really enjoyed the book. I didn't expect who the bad guy was until it was revealed (although maybe I should have) and the author weaved a world that was surreal but almost believable. I will defiantely be picking up one of his books again.

53. Reduce debt load by 25%
Up to 10% off my original debt so 1% down on my goal. 24% left. Sigh.

87. Get a library card
Got it.

I think that's all for now!

Friday, January 16, 2009

Goal Ninety-Two, again.

Read 50 Books and journal about them.

5. Blood Rites, Dresden Files book 6 by Jim Butcher

If you are not familiar with the Dresden Files books, it's a series about a Wizard living in Modern day Chicago. It's a nice mix of fantasy and reality, mixing every day events with magic, demons and various other things from the netherworld. That being said, I think I'm going to stop reading them. I love fantasy and I like the mix of it with modern times. It is squarely set in the "real" world but it borders on occultish and that doesn't bother me nearly as much as it should. The story line in this one was great, Dresden got to connect with his dead Mother (in a strange way) found out he had living family as well. It was a seperate story line from teh previous book but built back towards that story line nicely as there were a lot of loose ends. I'm slightly disappointed that I don't feel like I can read the next one but I think it's for the best. I may return to it after some time but for now, I have to say goodbye to Harry Dresden.

1. Twilight
2. New Moon
3. Eclipse
4. Breaking Dawn

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Six Word Memoir

I came across this awhile ago on postsecret and stubbled across it again today on a thread of Ravelry. If you could sum up your life in 6 words, what would it be? Obviously it will change as we all change and grow but it made me think. Where am I right now? What are the six words that could sum up what makes me tick at this moment? I came up with two different ones that are closely related, two sides of the same coin.

Don't care about your expectations anymore.


I don't want to disappoint myself.

I feel like I've been fighting with people's expectations my whole life. I spent most of my childhood hearing my Father ask me why I wasn't more like my older sister. Don't get me wrong, I love Aimee, but I'm not Aimee. Truthfully, Aimee and I are about as alike as night as day.
I think that I rebelled against that. Aimee was a good student, so determining that I could never live up to that, I didn't bother to do my homework. Aimee had nice, long thick hair and I've usually preferred mine shorter. Aimee wears calm sedate clothing and my clothing choices have been described as "spastic." Not that I harbour any resentment towards her, I just was not her and didn't want to be her so I lived my life the way I wanted to and tried my best to ignore disapproving stares. That's not to say that I was unaffected by them.
Later on in college, I found myself a little bit more and came into my own academically, which I found, much to my surprise, that I enjoyed. For the first time, I began to feel the weight of people's positive expectations. People trying to push me to my limits, telling me that they were going to be watching my career and questioning me as to different directions that I could go. They meant the best for me and helped me to grow but I still felt the weight of not knowing if I would ever succeed in living up to the expectations that people placed on me. The weight was different but I still felt the pressure of those expectations. I hated meeting with my advisor because he always made comments about expecting great things from me.

I felt the weight of all those expectations dearly. Of all the exectations that I would never live up to and all the expectations that I didn't know if I could live up to them.
So once again, I rebelled, I've hid from academics since I graduated. I ran from the pressure of other's unmet expectations and their subsequent disappointment in me.

But now, a little older, a little more experienced. For the fisrt time in my life the person I'm worried about letting down is me. It's a strange feeling but a nice one too. I shouldn't have to live under the shadow of other people's expectations but I should be allowed to forge my own path in the way I see fit. The expectations weren't all bad, but they also weren't mine. Now, for the first time in my life, I'm doing things because the person I don't want to disappoint is me. It's not about family, teacher or friends. It's not even about Phillip. It's about what I want and what I choose. Don't care about their expectations anymore, and the one I don't want is disappoint is me.

The feeling is both better and worse but at least now I know it's mine.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Gilmore Girls

Not very exciting but #4 is off my list. I picked up the third season of Gilmore girls for $15 which seemed too good to pass up. That puts me at owning all 7 seasons.

Friday, January 9, 2009

Best website ever. I'm now on chatper 5 of Dracula since Twilight apparently has me on a vampire kick.

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Apperances can be deceiving

When I first moved down to Cleveland I did some church hopping to find the right place to settle into. Several were good churches that I just didn't feel comfortable in and others just held no appeal for me. However, there was one church that I really couldn't find much positive to say anything about when I left. I felt uncomfortable the entire time I was there. The worship was fairly contemporary and there was nothing about the atmosphere that should have put me off. But I did feel singled out without feeling welcome, I thought there theology was slightly off the deepend and quite frankly when they started to pray at the end of service, I made a mad dash for the door. I was extremely relieved that I'd gone alone and the church was in walking distance of my apartment. I never went back.
Being in community service has really opened my eyes to what goes in the community. I come into contact with various churches and organizations all the time. What surprises me is that often the churches that people think would be doing much aren't doing much at all. In contrast, this church that made me feel so uncomfortable is one of the most active, community oriented churches that I've found in Cleveland.
I may not be comfortable there but I can no longer deny the good they are trying to do in the community. I, officially, stand corrected and repent over the harsh judgement I placed on them. They are doing what they can to relieve the suffering that they see around them. That's more than I can say for many others and, if I'm honest, more than I can say about myself much of the time.
Appearances can be decieving and first impressions aren't always right.

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Goal Ninety-Two

Goal 92: Read 50 books and journal about them.

Hmm, maybe I shouldn't read any novels in series until the entire series is written. I seem to actually make it through the series then instead of losing interest and never returning to it. So here are my thoughts on the last three books in the twilight series. Tara, you may want to skip this one!

1. Twilight
2. New Moon
New Moon ws not nearly as good as twilight, just to get that out of the way. The story line seemed mostly like prologue, like it was story filler with the only purpose to take us to book 3. Truthfully, the filler needed to be written but honestly the last 150 pages of the book were the only one's I really enjoyed. I only kept reading because the prologue left us with a teaser and I was reading to get to that point. I do enjoy the whole werewolves lore but Twilight left me wanting more of the Bella and Edward story, not the Bella and Jacob story. I realize it was a necessary chapter in the story, Edward not being there and the emotional turmoil that Bella was left in. Ah well, not every book can be a page-turner,.

3. Eclipse
Eclipse was much better than New Moon probably because I became totally involved in the Edward-Bella story and I don't really care much for Jacob. Jacob, especially after this book, is not someone I would be friends with in real life so I found myself just wanting him to go away. I guess it's because I'm someone who believes in clear relationship boundaries which Bella was definately confused about and Jacob was determined to cross. The only bright spot in the entire love triangle was that Edward was trying to give Bella room to work out her own issues. Jacob did deserve to be hit with a two-by-four. I guess it just irritated me because putting myself into that emotional confusion isn't something I would let myself do. Either your with someone or you aren't. Sigh, I definately don't miss being a teenager. Overall though it was a very good story and completely made up for the disappointment of New Moon.

4. Breaking Dawn
I read this 750+ page book in two days. This was definately a good conclusion to the series. Edward got what he wanted, Bella got what she wanted (and more) and Jacob's story came to a satisfying (if not a little weird) conclusion as well. Relationship boundaries became well defined and story lines came together. This was probably not the direction that I would have taken the series if it was mine but I did enjoy the authors vision and how Bella really didn't give up anything (except maybe her soul) to be with Edward in the end. Jacob, who doesn't have to age, ended up with the child who will never age after she's grown. Eternally, they all get to be happy except the Volturi. Honestly, I would love to see a book where she expands on that story a little bit but I don't think it would sell well. It would be the Twilight version of the Silmarillion where only really hardcore fans make it through. I do wonder what she's going to do next and I almost feel a little sorry for her like I do for the JK Rowling. What are the chances that they will ever acheive this sort of success again?