Thursday, December 22, 2011

I AM ALIVE! (but very bad at it)

Things have been rough around here, lately. I ran out of Zofran the other day, and cannot figure out who to call about refilling my prescription, so - needless to say - I did not make it to work today. I could barely keep my head out of the toilet all morning. That was fun.

Although, one thing - I laughed at throwing up for the first time today. Why, you ask? Because I threw up an Icee. A blue one. Sorry if you're squeamish or whatever, buthe blue... I dunno. It was a bad day overall, and I took whatever laughs I could get.

It doesn't seem all that funny anymore, though. Just sad.


Also, other bad things: I talked to work about the time off I asked for in January, and I'm not so sure they're going to give it to me. They said something about having a "policy" (that was never mentioned to me before) about not letting people take more than a couple of days off in a row within their first six months of work. But, because I mentioned the fact that Mark would be doing stuff for the military while we're back in MN (which is true), they're seeing if that changes the policy at all. I dunno. They're also probably not super happy with me for calling in sick a whole bunch. (They sounded sympathetic today because I was sobbing into the phone when I called in. Having just thrown up my third attempt at breakfast, I was a bit hysterical. Embarrassed about that now, but...whatever. It made them feel bad for me, and if sympathy works in my favor...fine.)


Sorry. I am all rambly and stuff. Can't focus very well. It is taking all my willpower to even sit down and type this. I have been napping and watching American Dad/wheezywaiter videos all day. Oh, and reading Foxtrot. I can't seem to do much that requires a whole lot of concentration. I'm very easily exhausted. I don't feel like myself at all.

I'm told that will go away at the beginning of my second trimester, when I will apparently regain some energy and sense of self. Only four more weeks to go until then... woohoo...

For now, back to Foxtrot.


Oh, and MERRY CHRISTMAS/HAPPY HOLIDAYS, e'erbody! Hard to believe it's this weekend already!


Man, I'm homesick.

And just plain sick.

But I'm trying to stay positive.

Or maybe that's just the delirium talking?

Sunday, December 11, 2011

Low Point

Yesterday was really the low point of this whole morning sickness fiasco. After calling in to work for the second day in a row, I spent the morning and early afternoon puking up anything and everything I tried to put into my body. Oatmeal, fresh pears, trail mix, saltines, water, ginger ale... even a peppermint candy I'd tried to suck on to ease my nausea made me end up with my head in the toilet. I was miserable. I even burst a couple of blood vessels in my right eye (no permanent damage, but painful nonetheless.) I didn't know what to do. All the tips for easing morning sickness I'd found online (or had been given by more experienced ladies) was not helping.

So Mark and I called the OB/GYN, who directed us to head to the emergency room. Which we did.

After being given a dose of Zofran (medication typically given to Chemo patients to help ease their nausea) and an IV with a liter of fluids (because, at that point, I was pretty dehydrated; I'll go into the awfulness of that procedure in a moment), I was diagnosed with Hyperemesis. Or: really, really bad morning sickness.

So now I'm on a special diet and have to take regular doses of Zofran, to keep the nausea at bay. I might even have to cut back my work schedule to part-time (no real complaint there), because one side effect of the medication is severe drowsiness and some dizziness.

Gee, thanks, Babby Williams. I can tell you love me already.

One good thing the doctor said, though, was that my level of morning sickness shows that my hormones are very active, which means my pregnancy is probably going really well so far. (Six weeks along! Woohoo!) So that's something, I guess.


Anyways, about the IV. It was my first ever, and I am no hero when it comes to needles. I don't liking having needles put in my body to put stuff in, and I hate it when they take stuff out. But I needed fluids, and I wanted to feel better (and not put the babby at further risk, obviously) so I was manning it up.

Until they put Mr-First-Day-With-A-Needle up to the task of inserting an IV into my small-and-even-further-shrunk-from-dehydration veins. Needless to say, his first attempt (my poor, right inner elbow) was not successful. He found the vein, but couldn't get anything to flow in. He missed the vein on my left arm, bruising it wonderfully. At this point, he gave up (thank goodness) and called in another nurse. She looked at my veins and called in another nurse, who called yet another nurse. Finally they found an appropriate vein on my right hand and (after almost having to fetch smelling salts, as I was 5/6ths passed out at this point) got things going.

May I also mention at this point that Mark, who is usually the one keeping me calm during anything involving needles, was not in the room at this point. The doctor had already sent him over to the pharmacy for my Zofran. He didn't return until an hour later (when my fluid bag was empty and I was waiting to have the IV removed), due to the line he'd encountered there. Geez.

So I made it through, and today - even though I did not feel 100% - I felt a lot better.

Hopefully I make it okay through work tomorrow.

And don't get yelled at for calling out. (I have a note from the doctor, though. So...yeah. If they yell at me, f*ck 'em. What are they going to do, fire me? Big whoop. I don't even care anymore.)

Thursday, December 8, 2011

This Sucks

Just the thought of going in to work makes me want to cry.

This morning, I am vomiting up water, ginger ale, crackers... I don't want to put anything into my mouth for fear it'll just come back up, but having an empty stomach doesn't help either.

I've had the past two days off, and even while chilling on the couch all day, the morning sickness was miserable. It's going to be a hundred times worse when I'm around all the noise and smells of Goodwill. Plus, I'm supposed to be eating crackers or dry snacks almost constantly (when am I supposed to do that at work?), drinking ginger tea (again?), sitting and relaxing every now and then (yeah right. they'd freak out at me.)...

We need the money for rent and plane tickets and the like, but good grief, I just want to quit and spent the day with my toilet. (Well...that's not what I want, ideally, but it seems like the best option right now.)

I'm trying everything, every tip I've been given: peppermints, lemon drops, ginger ale, ginger tea, crackers, naps... Nothing is helping so far. I don't know what to do.

And I have to work from 12:30pm to 9pm tonight.

Baaaaaaaaaaaarf.

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Morning Sickness

Sorry I haven't been posting. I keep writing down ideas for entries while I'm at work, but by the time I get home, I'm just too worn out to do anything but veg on the couch. And make food.

Well, up until yesterday anyway. Now making food isn't all that fun anymore.

Yesterday was the official beginning of morning sickness (aka: all-day, I-hate-my-life sickness). I woke up with a racing heart and ran into the bathroom for the first round of vomiting. I ate a banana for breakfast. That came up as soon as I got to work. Spaghetti-Os for lunch (big mistake). Those came up about five minutes after my lunch break was over. I was able to keep down water, but it was a near thing. It made my stomach feel sloshy, and I had a gross metallic taste in my mouth all day.

I have a little red dot in my right eye now (Yay! Kushiel's Dart!) from where I damaged a blood vessel with all the heaving.

I did manage to keep my Panera Bread supper down, but the queasiness didn't go away until I fell asleep. I was scared to get out of bed this morning, because I didn't know if I was going to have to go throw up the minute I tried to move.

I didn't, which is good. I'm even keeping down my oatmeal and toast. But I'm really scared to drink any fluids, because I don't want that sloshy feeling in my stomach today. I have to drink water - at least 64oz a day - so it's a bad choice either way. Either get dehydrated (which won't really make me feel better) or deal with the sloshy nausea.

Good god, is this what the next two months are going to be like? Because I preferred it when Babby Williams was demanding extra food (all red meat) and just giving me headaches and mood swings. Bah.

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

Mood Swings

So, the pregnancy symptoms are continuing to arrive. Sunday morning, the mood swings and fits of nonsensical weeping reared their ugly heads. I don't know exactly what set me off, but I ended up feeling like Alice in Wonderland. You know, that one scene where she cries and cries and can't stop, until she practically cries an ocean? And then she suddenly comes to her senses and says something like, "Oh dear. I do wish I hadn't cried so much." It was like that. Like flipping a switch.

And then, at work, I could not stop being angry. I was so irritated it felt like my head was literally getting hot. I felt like a monster. I wanted to kill something. Everything set me off - every sound, every smell. People just would not stop being stupid, obnoxious, needy, and noisy. Someone downstairs was whistling - just whistling - and I wanted to hunt them down and wring their neck. People kept repeating dumb questions like, "Do you have any Black Friday specials?" (NO! We're a Goodwill! Everything is always on special!) and "Do you guys have a computer system where I can look up what books you have? Why not?" (BECAUSE WE'RE A FLIPPING GOODWILL!) Rrrrgh.

The thing that was driving me the most crazy, though, was the radio. I never listen to the radio usually because I'm just not into the music they play. So imagine going from that (no radio) to what I suffer through now (40 hours of radio every week). I swear, they only play ten songs over and over and over and over... Every time one of them came on, it made me want to storm downstairs and smash the radio system. Or rip the speaker out of the wall. I even made a list of songs that make me want to smash the radio:

"Moves Like Jagger," by Maroon 5
"Someone Like You," by Adele
"Forget You," by Cee Lo Green
"Need You Now," by Lady Antebellum
"Tonight, Tonight," by Hot Chelle Rae
"Apologize," by One Republic
"Grenade," by Bruno Mars
"Edge of Glory," by Lady Gaga
"California Girls," by Katy Perry

Rrrgh. Just looking at that list and knowing I'll probably hear every single one of those songs at work today makes me grumpy. Thank goodness I have tomorrow and Thursday off. My patience with work is thinning, and fast.

Oh, I was also going to mention my annoyance with people pushing their politics at me while I'm ringing up their items. On Sunday, it was this lady who was purchasing "The O'Reilly Factor (For Kids)" and spouting "tide comes in, tide goes out" bullsh*t. Yesterday, it was this old guy buying...bah...I don't even remember. But when I asked him if he was eligible for the senior discount, he starting ranting about how Obama was stealing money from old people and making young people pay the bill. And then he said the most racist, stupid, horrifying thing. I quote: "...then Obama will sneak back off to Kenya (where he belongs) with all our good American money to get that phoney-boloney birth certificate of his."

O_o

Then he had the audacity to ask if I agreed with him. I responded, in a shell-shocked sort of way, that I was non-political. (Which seemed the politest way to say, "HELL NO I DO NOT AGREE!") He told me that I'd damn well better get political, or Obama was going to continue to pull the wool over my eyes. I then bid him a good day and hurried off to shelve things.

I am saddened that these people actually exist.

I am also saddened that I have to go to work now and deal with them.


Now that I think of it, I wonder if my mood swings would be so bad if I got to stay home and chill... This job probably just exacerbates things.

Saturday, November 26, 2011

Good News!

Happy belated Thanksgiving, everyone! Still digesting the smorgasbord from Thursday? Yeah, me too. Gorging myself on down-home type foods is one of my favorite holiday traditions. Forget calorie-counting! Pass me the mashed 'taters!

My husband and I had a very happy Thanksgiving ourselves. We spent the day high on life (and carbohydrates). As some of you may know, we got some very exciting - and unexpected - news yesterday morning: come July, WE'RE GOING TO BE PARENTS!

(Of course, that is taking it for granted that everything goes smoothly and to plan.)

It's weird, waking up in the morning and knowing you're different than you were, that you're carrying a life inside you (cheesy as that sounds). Mark and I were starting to think that it was impossible for us to have a baby - we were just starting our infertility appointments with the doctor - and now...

I don't feel all that different yet (other than the knowing). The big symptoms (like morning sickness) aren't supposed to start for another couple of weeks. Right now I'm just feeling exhausted and hungry all the time, and I do have some mood swings. Baby Williams (or Babby Dubs, as I have taken to calling him/her) sure does love red meat, though. I cannot shake this craving for hamburgers. And whenever I get to eat one, my mouth feels like it's never been happier. My taste buds come alive!

Haha, it's funny. While I normally like hamburgers, I have never had such a strong desire for them. And they have never tasted quite so delicious.

So I suppose the food cravings have begun, at least.


I want to write more about everything, but I am soooo worn out. Full-time retail work and pregnancy can really do a number on a person's endurance.

So good night! Talk to you later!

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Sooo...this job...

...is not going as well as I would have hoped.

They hired me as a bookseller, right? That is what I said before? Okay, just checking. Because I have not set foot in the book loft since my first day. They've had me on the main floor doing general cashiering all day, every day since then. (Well, except Monday and Tuesday, because I wasn't there. I'm talking during my work schedule.) By myself, about 90% of the time.

The work itself is not difficult. It is frustrating - no bar codes, every entry has to be selected from a category on a touch screen, then you select the price (if it's not a common price, you have to enter it manually). Then there's the dinosaur of a credit card machine. And the wrapping of glass items (there are lots). And the ridiculous procedure that goes with people purchasing furniture. And the impossible multi-tasking.

There are five glass cases near the front register. Each has a lock, and a separate key. Each can be opened only by an employee. Then you have to stand there and babysit the customer while they diddle-daddle over the merchandise in the case. You cannot leave them alone by the case, because THEY COULD STEAL STUFF.

This would not be a problem if there were one person to watch the customers at the case, and one person to operate the cash register for the perpetual line of customers. But there ISN'T. Customer-watcher? Me. Cashier? Me. Other Goodwill employees? Vanished. Probably in the back, chatting. Nowhere in sight. And the cashier is not supposed to get more than 15 or so feet from the register, so I can't go looking for help from my coworkers. No PA system, no walkie-talkies, no phones. I am pretty much all by myself, screwed, with the impatient customers at the front who expect me to be able to do five hundred things at once.

And this was not the job I was hired for. This is the job I somehow keep getting foisted into. If I am not back upstairs tomorrow, the managers and I will have words. I do not want this job. I want the book loft.

The book loft is peaceful. It's like working at a tiny Barnes & Noble. When I was up there, I was tempted to think it was boring. Now it seems like heaven. God, I miss it.

My book lead, Kate, said that if I'm not upstairs tomorrow, she will also have words with the managers. So at least there's someone on my side.

There's so much more I could complain about, but I'm not going to. It's too depressing.


Also, I cannot get the smell of homeless people out of my nose (as awful and heartless as that sounds). They hang around in the store a lot. Sometimes they buy weird things. ...yup.

Also, also, I should be packing tonight, but I'm so worn out. But when else will I be able to pack? *siiigh*

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Mooooving!

So, this weekend is the weekend we're moving to our new place! I'm very excited for the new apartment, but the move itself has me a little worried.

As you know from my last post, I'm not going to be a whole lot of help with the actual "moving" process. Heck, I don't even know if I have any days off this weekend - I might not even be able to be around. That worries me like crazy, because I get super finicky and controlling about this kind of thing. I like to be independent about it. I like to pack all my own stuff, clean up after myself by myself, etc, etc. We're having people over to help, which is great, but I... I dunno. I just want the place to look as clean as possible before they come, because I don't want to be embarrassed by our messiness. (You know, cleaning the fridge, the bathroom, the dog hair out of the bedroom carpet...) But I work today from 2:30-9, tomorrow from 10-6:30, and Friday from 12:30-9. I'm going to have to work in my pre-cleaning around that. Plus I still have to pack the whole bedroom, kitchen, bathroom, and the other random stuff hanging around the living room. While not over-taxing my shoulder. And being tired from work.

Oh, new apartment! I am excited, but you stress me out! Whyyyy? Whyyyyyyyy!?

Got to find some socks and get my teeth brushed now. Maybe I'll talk more later. If I'm not packing, that is.


EDIT: Working all weekend. My next day off is Monday. Woohoo.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Weak "Weekend"

Yesterday and today were my "weekend" this week. (At least, I think they were all I'm going to get for the week. I only know my schedule as far as Friday, so I don't know if I'm going to get Saturday or Sunday off. I hope I can get at least one.) It's nice to get two days off in a row. I doubt it'll happen much (unless I request it) now that I'm a full-time worker again. Still... it was a pretty lackluster weekend.

Why? Well, because of the doctor's appointments. You know, the ones I've been talking about for quite some time now.

Blah. Yesterday I got seven stitches put into my shoulder. The process itself wasn't painful or even all that stressful, because I knew what was coming. What sucks is that I now am unable to lift/push/pull more than 5lbs for the next two weeks. I also can't do anything that stretches the skin on my back - can't lift my arms over my head, can't use my arms to push myself out of bed... The stitches are right over where my shoulder blade stretches the skin, so I have a really limited range of motion. *sigh* I'm glad the process is mostly over, but it's a pain in the butt right now. And I've got to turn the "no lifting" note from my doctor to my brand-new job. They'll love that.

Today I had to have blood drawn. I pass out every time. Well, except this time. But it was a close call.

Meh. I shouldn't complain about having time off, but this weekend made me feel even more exhausted than I was before. (I know I've only worked two days so far, but they were tiring. I haven't worked in a while. I'm easily worn out.) And I am totally shirking on my promise (to myself) to write more fiction. Just don't have the brain power.

Even thinking about work wears me out. When did I get so lazy?

Thursday, November 10, 2011

Tyrus Rewrite, Pt 2!

Once again, it's very rough (done in true NaNoWriMo style), but I finished it up!

Let me know what you think!



Following some kind of animal instinct, she did the only thing that made sense at that moment: she bit down. Hard.

The unmistakably metallic taste of blood filled her mouth and he released her with a yell and a curse. She did not waste a moment. Spitting as much of the bitter liquid as she could in his face, she launched herself toward the cabin door. Perhaps if she could get as far as the deck, she could make it over the side. She would rather take her chances with the impetuous sea than with the mutinous mongrels her once-beautiful ship had become home to.

Her hand had just closed over the door latch when she felt his fingers close around her shoulder. “You'll pay for that, you little bitch.” His foot hooked her leg, and she was on the floor – flat on her back – in one painful instant. The breath had fled her lungs, but still she managed to roll away before he could land a solid kick to her ribs.

Once she was certain she had put enough distance between his foot and her ribcage, she scrambled to her feet, searching, searching. He was between her and the door - there was no longer hope for escape that way without having to fight past him. She needed a weapon. There was none in sight. The dagger sheath at her belt hung empty, useless. Even her hidden boot sheath had been emptied when the crew had turned to mutiny. Her cabin had been stripped of everything but the bare essentials. The only things she had to work with were the chair (too heavy to make a feasible weapon), the desk and rack (bolted down or built into the bulkheads themselves), and a length of old rope that hung on a peg just a few paces to her left. A length of rope? It would have to do; she had nothing else. She seized it and wrapped a length around her knuckles, unsure of what good it would do her. Just having something in her hands - useless or not - made her feel fractionally less helpless. 
 
Now to fight.

Tyrus watched her frantic search, eyes hard and teeth bared in a feral grin. When he saw her feeble attempt at arming herself, the grin widened. His hand was covered in blood. It had run down his wrist and stained his shirtsleeve. Now, as his arm tensed low at his side, it dripped quietly on the floor. Ryenne hoped she had rendered the hand mostly useless, but she could not be sure. She prayed it was. She needed all the help she could get now.

"Feeling feisty today, are we, Caelar?" His voice was playful, but his expression was anything but. He took a few paces forward, growling when she skittered backward, away from him. "You're making this harder than it needs to be, you know."

"Good." She twisted the rope in her hands, trying to formulate a plan. Nothing came to mind.

He lunged, and any other plans Ryenne might have made fled her mind in that instant. She was too slow to duck the first blow. His fist connected with her gut, knocking the wind from her and making black spots dance before her eyes. There was no time to shake it off, however. She was already attempting to dance clear of the second blow. It glanced off her shoulder, smearing blood on her already-filthy shirt, and swung past. Tyrus was thrown momentarily off-balance. Panting with exhilaration and fear, she took the opening and slipped behind him. The rope was over his head in a blink. Ryenne grimaced with satisfaction as she tightened it across his windpipe. She could hear his throat rattle, struggling for the air it could no longer take in. He swung blindly at her, blood from his injured hand spattering her face, but she threw all her weight into the task of strangling him. In a moment, he would lose consciousness. She hoped.

That was when she spotted it - the dagger at his hip. If she could just reach it, she could slit his throat and be done with it. His movements were already starting to slow. If she was quick...

She knew her mistake the moment she reached toward his belt: she was not strong enough to strangle him one-handed. But it was too late. 
 
Tyrus sucked in a deep breath and seized the hand that still feebly attempted to kill him. The dagger brushed past Ryenne's fingers - so close, and yet too far - as he slammed her into the bulkhead.

That's enough play for now, Captain.” He strangled her with his blood-streaked forearm, trapping her between it and the wood of the bulkhead behind her. His other hand was busy with the rope still knotted around her hands, knotting it further still, trussing her up like a pig for the slaughter. “It's time you took what was coming to you.” The leering grin returned. “And, no, I won't be asking for your permission.”

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

I Done Wrote Stuff!

I'm not sure whether or not I actually mentioned the writing project I've been working on lately on this blog, but I actually made progress on it yesterday. The project itself is silly, and pointless, but I felt like doing it. It came about like this:

I was rereading Two Captains the other day (last week, actually), and came upon the scene where Tyrus is first introduced. Here it the original text.

Reading it was painful. (I can say that without fear of insulting anyone's writing talent but my own, seeing as I wrote that scene.) The run-on sentences and the ridiculous descriptions... And the fact that Ryenne is stupid enough to attempt to use a piece of ordinary rope as a whip? Bah. I cringed.

And then I decided that I was going to rewrite the scene. Not re-publish it or anything, just rewrite it for my own benefit. So I started that yesterday. It's not done yet, and it's very, very rough, but I wanted to post it anyway. Here it is:



"Well, well, well...if it isn't the Great Captain Caelar."

Ryenne jumped, startled, as Tyrus shut the cabin door behind him with a sharp snap. She had been so lost in her own miserable musings that she had not even heard the door to what had once been her cabin – now only her prison - open. She wished, for pride's sake, that he had not caught her by surprise. She could not wipe the tear tracks from her cheeks quickly enough. He chuckled at the sight of them.

"Things are finally starting to sink into that thick skull of yours, eh, Caelar?"

"Why are you here, Tyrus?" She forced her voice to remain steady, despite the fear and fatigue she had been slowly succumbing to in the past three days of captivity. "The lot of you have tormented me enough. Just kill me and be done with it."

The sound of his heavy boot steps behind her made her want to cringe. His pace was measured, slow. Taunting her. "No, Captain. I don't think we've done enough. Not after what you've done to us."

“And what, exactly, is that?” She resisted the urge to turn around and face him. She did not trust him at her back, but she did not want to admit that fact to him. Instead, she straightened in her chair, forcing her hands to remain still on the desk before her. "What have I done to you that merits this?"

He paused in his pacing and the warmth of his breath whispered across the nape of her neck. She could not hold back a shudder. She had not realized he had gotten so close. "You treat us as though we are heathens and you are a god, too high and mighty to notice the petty concerns of ants like us."

"Mutinous heathens," she corrected him tartly. "And I am your Captain, not your god. I never asked for your worship. Only your respect." 

"A woman is not fit to be captain." He was too close. She could practically smell the danger in the air, the tang of it mingling with the heavy smell of liquor on his breath.

"Better the captain be a woman than a man like you."

She should have known better than to bait him. She had seen him tangle with men twice her size and come out the better. She would never stand a chance against the brute. But the words were out now, and there was no calling them back. They would cost her dearly.

Before she could so much as flinch, he seized a hank of her hair and hauled her upright, twisting her to face him as he did so. The pain of it brought fresh tears to her eyes. She howled in fury, clawing at him, but he did not let go. Instead, he brought his face closer and whispered, almost tenderly, "Perhaps you ought to be taught some manners."

She wanted to bite him. She tried, snapping her teeth in vain. “Let me go, you stinking bilge-rat!”

He laughed. "What a spitting little cat you are!" His free hand clamped around her jaw. She seized his wrist, scrabbling at it with her poor, chewed-off fingernails. He did not even seem to notice. This close, his eyes had a glazed look to them she had not noticed before. The smell of rum that radiated from him seemed suddenly stronger. She could not breathe.

A woman is not fit to be captain,” he repeated, squeezing her jaw with near-crushing force. “Women are only good for one thing.”

You're not getting that from me, Tyrus!” It was difficult to get the words out with his fingers digging into her cheeks like they were, but she managed it. She would have spit on him if she could have managed that, too. She could not, however. 
 
It was as though he could read her thoughts. Chuckling at her helpless frustration, he continued to squeeze until her lips were forced into a puckered pout. Like a whore begging for a kiss. “Who says I was asking permission?”

She did not realize he had been forcing her backward until her shoulders slammed into the rough wood of the bulkhead. It awakened in her a renewed sense of panic. With a sudden burst of frenzied energy, she managed to twist her head just far enough to loosen Tyrus's bruising grip on her jaw. By chance, the motion had caused his left thumb to somehow slip into her mouth. Following some kind of animal instinct, she did the only thing that made sense at that moment: she bit down. Hard.


So...yup. That's what I've got so far. And I think that's what I'll be working on later on today. For now, I have to clean the bedroom closet. And shower. And stuff.

Monday, November 7, 2011

One of Those Days...

The stress is setting in a little bit today. You know, from all the change coming at once. I'm sure that once I get into the swing of things I'll be fine. It's the anxiety/anticipation that really gets to me. I don't know what to expect, and in not knowing what to expect, my mind goes to the worst possible outcome.

For instance, when I go to the orientation meeting for my new job on Thursday, I'll need to let the scheduling people know that I have to have the afternoons of the 14th and 15th off (for those doctor's appointments I mentioned a few times before), and two weeks in January for our trip back to Minnesota. Of course I'm terrified they're going to be like "NO WAY! WHY DO YOU ASK SO MUCH OF US!? NO JOB FOR YOU!!!" I mean, they might have a problem with the two weeks thing, but they might have no problem at all. I just figure I should talk to them about it sooner, rather than later. Still, the confrontation of just asking for that time off makes me nervous.

I hate confrontation.

Also, Mark and I got to talk to our landlord again today, and view the apartment we'll be moving into. It's going to be great. There are windows on all four sides (in different rooms), a shade canopy-thinger over the patio, a security storm door with a dead bolt (on top of the regular door), and all kinds of other features. I should be - and am - super excited about moving in there. What I'm not so excited about is that the landlord was talking about moving our moving date from the 15th to the 21st. And then he asked if I can get our apartment ready for showing.

Umm... I started packing already today, thinking that we'd be moving out early next week. So all of our movies are in paper bags, sitting in the living room. I took down all of our wall hangings and stacked them on the dining room table. Tomorrow I was planning on working on packing up most of our clothes, which are currently scattered around the bedroom. Our bedroom closet is a disaster. How am I supposed to pack, while also keeping the apartment organized enough to show to potential renters?

I'm sure "showing" apartments while the renters are still in them is extremely common, and should be no big deal, but for some reason, it is to me. I hate for other people to see our apartment messy. It gets a top-to-bottom clean before anybody ever comes to visit. I don't want to let strangers see it in disaster mode!

Grr. Argh.

Also, I'm starting to worry about the whole never-having-days-off thing that comes along with full-time work. I'm super spoiled about time off. And I'm an introvert, so I need recharge time. I have the feeling I'm going to wear down fairly quickly once the newness wears off.


But why am I complaining? I wanted a job so bad, and now I have one. I wanted more money to buy things I've been coveting, and I'll have that (to a small degree, at least). I wanted more space (and an upper level), and I'm going to be getting that.

I just need to stop freaking out. Everything is going to be okay.

Maybe I need to break out that "Calm Down" mix I made for dealing with stressful times. It always helps, and the lyrics of some of those songs make me laugh at myself.


HEATHER'S STRESSED OUT MIX:

1. "Calm Down," by Solid Gold
2. "Everything Will Be Alright," by The Killers
3. "That's Okay," by The Hush Sound
4. "Uptight (Everything's Alright)," by Stevie Wonder
5. "Get Over It," by Solid Gold
6. "I Don't Mind," by The Decemberists

...and some others. I can't remember the rest of the songs I had picked. It's been a while since I put the play list together, and I lost the CD I burned. Oh well. I suppose that's a good sign, right? Right?


I don't want anyone to think I'm not grateful for all the good things coming my way right now. I am grateful. Very grateful. I've just got a lot to think about, and sometimes it's hard not to get overwhelmed. I just need to teach myself how to think of just one thing at a time. Deal with things one by one.

At least that's what my husband tells me, lol. :)


In other news, I have been having waaaay too much fun fooling around with this Tudor Scene Maker on DollDivine lately. You should try it. If you're anything like me, I guarantee you'll be addicted.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Holy Carp

Life moves crazy fast sometimes.

Just the other day, Mark and I were discussing the possibility of moving into a two-bedroom, upper-level apartment our landlords just bought. The possibility. Meaning maybe next month or the month after. Today, after speaking to the landlord, we have until the 15th to be moved out of this apartment and into that one.

Once again: Hol-ee carp.

I'm excited, though. The new job means we'll be good for the only-very-slightly-higher rent, and the second level is what we've wanted from the beginning. I'm so excited for the increased security and privacy. Plus, this new apartment is above the clubhouse area, and is the only apartment in the building. Very private. It also overlooks the pool, which is nice (when no one is in it). Also also, we will no longer have to walk a block to get to the laundry room. It's practically at the bottom of our stairs. w00t w00t!

But now my week is a whole lot busier than I thought it was. I will be packing (and doing NaNoWriMo) every day. Thankfully we're just moving across the complex, no further. Else... ay, I shudder to think.


In other news, our friends the Wakefields just found an apartment that's only about two miles from ours, so Mark and Chan can carpool to work in the mornings! And we don't have to drive a half an hour just to hang out with people! Hurrah!


Hopefully all of this goes well. I love change.

When change works properly.

Friday, November 4, 2011

Rain, and Other Things

It's raining today in San Diego (and Lemon Grove, where I live). It's gray and chilly, but I've got the sliding door open so I can listen to the sound of the rain on the leaves and sidewalks. It's the first real rain I've seen since I left Minnesota (and it hadn't rained there since last fall, so it's been quite a while). You'd think I'd hate how gloomy the day is, but it's actually kind of refreshing. It signals a break in the never-changing, always-sunny-and-blue-skies weather around here. (Not that I'm complaining, mind you.) Besides, I like the cold.

And, as my elder sister says I am a disciple of the Church of Tim Burton, I also kind of like the gloom. Gloomy weather is more conducive to my kind of storytelling than bright blue skies and chirruping birds. Gloomy weather stories are just more interesting.

"Once upon a midnight, dreary..."

"It was a dark and stormy night. You know the kind. Like day, but darker."


It's official - I passed both the drug test and the background check. I have orientation next Thursday morning, and then they'll let me know my new work schedule from there. (Hopefully it's a little flexible. I have doctor's appointments on both the afternoon of the 14th and the 15th. For different things, of course.) I'm excited, but also pretty nervous. I mean, I'm going from unlimited free time to a full-time work schedule, and I'm sure I'll get overwhelmed after a little bit. I just have to keep one thing in mind: MONEY.

In the words of Peter Griffin:

"It just goes to show you, Lois. It doesn't matter if you're black or white. The only color that matters is green."


Mark and I went and checked out the Bookloft last night. It was just a little loft area above a regular Goodwill, but it seemed nice enough. The girl who worked there seemed really laid back. (I didn't tell her I might be her coworker soon. I thought that would seem creepy.) It doesn't look like it'll be too bad a gig. I just hope that I actually get to spend most of my time in the book loft itself, and not a whole lot down in the regular part of the store. 


Haha, it's funny. When I applied for Goodwill, it was just for a regular store worker. And now that they've offered me a bookseller position, I'm all snobby about only working in the book areas. Oh, me. *facepalm*




My black lab, Lilly, is currently hovering over my laptop in a "Why are you staring at that box, Mummy? Don't you want to pet meeeeeeee? I think you should pet me instead!" kind of way. She's a very pushy dog sometimes. Both of my dogs are. It's probably because I spoil them rotten.


Well, that and I just said something to them about Mark being home pretty soon. They always get pushy and excited when I use the words "almost home." They're really good at word recognition. Unless that word is "no" or "don't" or "Lilly, get the heck out of here! You make me want to punch you in the face!" (I never do, of course.) 




Well, I don't have much more to say for now. I should probably get up off the couch and do something useful for once.


Still working on rewriting that scene from Two Captains. I'll let you know if anything comes of it.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Broadway Book Loft

Guess what, guys!

I GOTS ME A JORB!!!

(Well, it's not officially mine until I pass the drug test/background check tomorrow, but as I haven't imbibed any illegal substances, nor committed any felonies, I feel pretty comfortable making the announcement.)

It's not the most glamorous job in the world, nor is it the worst. What it is is a job at the Goodwill Broadway Book Loft in downtown San Diego. It is a Goodwill for BOOKS ONLY. (Well, and I suppose movies and possibly music, but you know what I meant.) And my title (as it has been given me thus far) is BOOKSELLER. That's right BOOKSELLER. (Suck on that B&N. If you don't want to make me a BOOKSELLER, then someplace else will. Someplace that will not, in fact, be more concerned about me selling B&N memberships than actual BOOKS.) BECAUSE I LOVE SELLING BOOKS!

Okay, enough with the CAPITAL LETTERS for now.

I keep talking the job down when I tell people about it, and I'm not sure why. I mean, Goodwill itself doesn't sound like a very prestigious job, but it's better than the job I had previously (aka: none) and it is definitely much better than working at McDonalds (which I have done before). I'm not ashamed of it, really. I think it's a pretty spiffy little job to have gotten. It mixes my love of books with my love of not having more responsibility than I can handle. I think my talking-it-down tendencies come from my fear that, if I appear to love the idea of the job too much, people might be all, "Goodwill? She's that happy about a job at Goodwill? Boy, she is the least ambitious, least potential-having person I know."

But why should I care about people who would react that way?

I'm friggin' excited to be getting back out there and earning some monies doing something I actually care even a little bit about.

I would rather work at a Goodwill bookstore than have a corporate job that I absolutely loathe.

Yeah. There I go, pep-talking myself up. (I haven't had anybody talk down to me about the job yet, so I have no idea why I'm so up-in-arms about it. Huh. I'm a weirdo.) Yeah, I can be peppy if I want to! w00t!


In other news, NaNoWriMo is going pretty well so far. I'm ahead of schedule by about 300 words, and have a few little ideas about things to write that will help keep me going and shouldn't tax me too far outside my abilities. (Because NaNo should never tax you outside your abilities, right?) So far, November is looking to be a pretty good month!

Well, except for the fact that my doctor's office hasn't called me back to schedule that skin biopsy yet.

But we don't think about that.


Anyways, I don't have much else to say and my laptop battery is about to die, so I'll wrap this up for now. Just wanted to share the good news with all y'all.

Man, I hate the word "y'all."

Why did I just use it?

I'm weird sometimes.

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Happy Halloween?

Was it really Halloween yesterday, or is my calendar off? If it really was, it was the quietest Halloween I have ever had. The most uneventful. We only had three or four trick-or-treaters (leaving a bucketful of candy for Mark and I to devour by ourselves. Uh oh.) and no one was in the mood to hang out and do anything. So Mark and I watched a show on haunted houses, then a movie called "Monster House," then we went to bed. Wow. Fun.

Mark and I were going to check out the Balboa Park Haunted Trail, but the tickets were $20 each, and we decided it wouldn't be too smart to spend $40 just to go to a haunted house. Plus nobody wanted to go with us, and that's the sort of thing that's more fun to do in a group. So we did nothing instead.

Sometimes making adult decisions (especially when it concerns money) ends up making things so goddamn boring.

Bah. I'm being negative again. What's something to be positive about?


Today is the first day of NaNoWriMo, and just the fact that I'm sitting down to type this shows that I'm doing well so far.

You might think it's cheating, but this year, I'm not working towards writing a "novel," per se. I'm just writing. Anything. Journal-ing, blogging, fiction writing, whatever. As long as I have 50,000 words by the end of the month, it counts. I think it's going to help, though.

Don't understand the point of the whole thing? You know, if I'm not actually working towards a novel? Well, let me explain:

Every year before this, when I'm trying to write an actual cohesive story, I get so tangled up in story details that I get bogged down and write myself into corners. Speed-writing is not really my friend. But since I still wanted to participate in NaNoWriMo, I decided I would use it for something other than getting a huge, messy chunk of the novel on a page. I'm just using it as an exercise to get me in the habit of writing. I figure if I'm in the habit of writing (even if it's not fiction), my production levels will go up. And then The Novel will get done faster! (Although the term "faster" is irrelevant. Anything could be faster than the pace we're writing now. Even if I only wrote one word a day, it would be faster. Know why? Because currently we're writing NOTHING. BOO!)

But...yeah. That's the plan. We'll see how it goes.

(I'm at 425 words already! w00t!)


So, yesterday I took on a slightly more ambitious craft than the ones I've been doing lately. I started work changing a sundress I bought from Old Navy (that I never wear because the amount of cleavage it shows rockets me right into "streetwalker" territory) into a skirt with an elastic waistband and pockets. Basically, trying to turn this:


Into this (except with the pockets that I have yet to add):


(Obviously they were not the exact same dress - because of the fabric pattern - but they were the same style.)

As you can see, the project was going pretty well. Except for one thing: I forgot to remember that, when sewing in elastic, you want the seams you're sewing to having some give and stretch. Otherwise the elastic itself won't be able to stretch.

I did a stretch test on the seam as soon as I finished sewing it, and the thread broke. Because I'd sewed with a plain straight stitch instead of a zigzag or whatever it was I was supposed to use. So I have to fix it. I didn't have the patience to do it last night, and I'm not sure I have the patience today, but we'll see.


But yeah. As I have nothing else that is useful to say, I think I'll stop for now.

You may not see the rest of today's 1,667 words here, but rest assured, it will be written. I mean, I have nothing else to do.

Monday, October 31, 2011

Happy Halloween!





HAPPY HALLOWEEN, E'ERBODY!!!


In other news, NaNoWriMo starts tomorrow! Wish me luck!

Friday, October 28, 2011

Oh boy!

So, I got some fun news today.

I recently (last Friday) had a mole removed from my left shoulder. It was about the size of a pinky-fingernail, and I'd had it as long as I could remember. It worried me from time to time, because it looked like the type of thing that could develop into skin cancer. I didn't do anything about it, though, because I was too chicken shit to go to the doctor, have it removed, and hear the words, "YOU HAVE CANCER."

(I should probably mention at this point, before I scare you too much, that I do not have cancer. Well. As far as I know.)

Since my husband joined the Navy and we have (basically) free health care, I have been getting a lot of minor procedures done that I've been putting off for a while. Getting the mole removed was one of them.

It was a simple enough procedure. They numbed the area, then cut it off. Didn't need stitches or anything. Just some gauze. The doctor told me she thought it was nothing, but they were going to test it anyway. She'd call me today if there was anything to report. If there wasn't, she wouldn't.

Oh boy.

You can imagine how I felt when I got a call from my doctor today.

They want to go back and cut more (a skin biopsy, they called it). This time around, I'll need stitches. I asked if the mole was cancerous after all. She said no, but they did find a few "abnormal cells." (whoopee) The biopsy was just a preventative measure, to make sure they got any last bit of weirdness, in case it one day decided it wanted to be dangerous. No cancer. Just "abnormal." (WTF does "abnormal" mean, anyway? What exactly was abnormal? I do not know.)

So, even though it's preventative, and the doctor told me I shouldn't worry, my paranoid brain has suddenly turned my body into a battleground full abnormalities that will, one day, unite and kill me. Violently.

Mark has been trying to keep me calm whenever I bring up my worry, but I'm not getting hysterical...

Yet.


The title of this blog will stop being even the slightest bit amusing to me if I develop cancer.

Just saying.


NOTE: I do not find cancer amusing. The title of this blog was solely to poke fun (in a dark humor way) at the paranoid attitude cancer stirs up - it seems like everything gives you cancer these days. Deodorant, chocolate, coffee, cell phones, microwave ovens, etc, etc, etc.

Monday, October 24, 2011

Just To Make Me Smile

*grump grump grump*

I'm feeling super grumpy today, and you're about to find out why...

I don't know what it is about my luck, or my ability to stumble upon ossum things, but I am always (ALWAYS) finding out about cool events waaay too late to be able to set aside money for tickets, or even buy tickets in the first place. Don't believe me? I'll give you some examples:

- When I first moved to SD, I found out Fleet Foxes (SO OSSUM) were going to be playing at a venue downtown a few days after I arrived. Guess what! They were already sold out.


- I found out Cold War Kids were playing at a festival in LA the DAY OF THE CONCERT, because I happened to see it in a flyer. (LA is a two-hour drive away, and my parents were in town, else I probably would have pestered my husband into going anyway.)


- San Diego is holding a World Fantasy Convention (which Neil Gaiman will be attending) this fall. Guess who didn't find out until AFTER the tickets had been sold out for months? Yeah. Me.


- The Decemberists (definitely in my top 3 favorite bands of all time) are taking a hiatus from making music together. The tour they just finished was their last, possibly forever. I got to see them in Minneapolis, but I found out (about a month before the show date) that they were playing in LA. And there were still tickets! However, despite weeks of nagging and begging and whining, my husband waffled on his decision until it was too late. We didn't get to see the show. And the kicker: they played four of my favorite songs (that weren't played in Minneapolis) AND the song that originally made me love their music. :(


- Neil Gaiman and his wife, Amanda Palmer, are having a Halloween bash in LA on, you guessed it, Halloween. Which is next Monday. Tickets are still available. However, Mark and I have reached the end of our fun budget for this paycheck, and could not possibly afford to buy tickets. Also, it's on a Monday night, so - given the fact that Mark has to be up at 4am to make it to class on Tuesday - Mark would never agree to drive to LA. So, again, I miss something ossum.




I thought moving to California would be this huge adventure, where I could go explore and experience all this neat stuff that I'd never had the chance to do before. And I have seen some stuff, and done a few things here and there... But most of my time is spent in my apartment, waiting for Mark to come home, and hoping that he'll have made plans so we can get out of the friggin' condo complex.


I would get out an adventure more while he's not here, but... I mean, I have no car. So everything is a clusterf*ck of trying to coordinate trains and buses (and then waiting and waiting and waiting for said trains and buses). And then, when I get to these places, just wandering aimlessly by myself. It's no fun adventuring by yourself. (I do have a couple of friends here, but both have jobs, and are busy most days. I hate working, pretty much, but I wish I had a job, just for something to do. Well. And the money.) So...yeah. That kind of quashes my adventuring spirit.


My husband seems to have lost his adventuring spirit. It's all I can do these days to drag him away from the TV or computer. It's a little depressing.




But...anyways. November will be here in the blink of an eye, and this year I intend to throw myself in NaNoWriMo as if it is a lifeline. (HA. As if I haven't promised to "work my hardest" in years past. But really. This year I will.) What will I write? Not entirely sure yet. But I'll figure it out somehow.



That reminds me of an article I just posted on Tumblr, called 8 Important Questions to Ask Yourself About Your Writing. I read it the other day and spent some time pondering. The first question ("Do you love writing?") is a resounding yes, but another one of the questions ("Are you writing the right stuff?" ...or something along those lines) kind of stumped me.


Am I writing the right stuff? Sometimes I don't know. I love writing about the characters I do, but sometimes I feel like I'm not super suited to adventure so much. I mean... well, I dunno. I've just always had a hard time coming up with the Final Showdown and whatnot. I find I have a much easier time writing about small, day-to-day battles (aka: soap opera drama). Who knows, though? Maybe I'm just second-guessing myself, or not pushing myself hard enough.


I think I need to ponder the question some more.




But yes. Grumpiness.


Lately, I've been trying to jump-start myself into the mindset that no one is responsible for my happiness but me, but DAMN. It is hard to be happy - and have fun with your time - when you spend most of it alone. The crafting helps every now and then, but it can get tedious to repeat the same projects over and over. I could write, but most of the time I'm so restless from being cooped up in the apartment that I just can't find the focus. I've been reading more lately, which helps, but again...


Bah. I'm getting all whiny.


I use this blog as a platform to whine.


But hey, I did warn you, right off the bat, that I whine. A lot.


I'm just getting to the point where even I am sick of all the whining. I want something to happen, to change. I want some adventuring.


Unfortunately, I might have to adventure all by myself.




Sorry I'm not ending this on a happier note. Like I said, I'm feeling grumpy. And also pensive.


It's just one of those days.

Sunday, October 23, 2011

NaNoWriMo

NaNoWriMo starts next Tuesday. I am freaking out, man! Not prepared for this AT ALL.

Does that mean I won’t try?

Absolutely not.

Elise? You up for the challenge?

Sunday, October 16, 2011

Garbahge Sale

So, a friend of mine told me tonight that her apartment complex is having a huge garage sale next weekend. She thinks I should come on over and see if I can sell some of my crafty wares, see how the market is for that stuff. Trouble is, I've been in the habit of giving my creations away, so my stock of stuff I'd be willing to sell is at about 0 items. If I decide to do this, it leaves me with about a week to come up with a reasonable amount of stock.

A lot of the stuff I've been making is not exceptionally difficult or time-consuming to make (with the exception of knitting. That can get tedious.), so I don't think I'd have too much trouble.

What I do have trouble with is deciding what these things are worth. Or if they're worth anything at all. Yeah, it's handmade. And yeah, it's a cool little gift when someone gives it to you, but is it something people would actually pay for?

I have no idea.

I suppose I'll just have to make a ton of stuff and find out for myself. I guess, if nothing sells, I'd have a lot of Christmas present material. Right?


In other news, I had a sad moment the other day when I realized just how much free time I have, and how little of it I actually spend reading. (Or writing, but that's another matter entirely.) I am endeavoring to remedy that situation. For a couple of weeks now, I've been picking away at the same book ("Ship of Magic," by Robin Hobb). Pitiful, really, how long it's taking me. Especially since I've read it before. (To my credit, it has been a while, and I've actually forgotten most of what happens. So it's like reading a new book.) It's about 800 pages long, and between yesterday and today I've read about 650. (Not too bad. We did have people over this evening, so that cut into my reading time.) I'm hoping to be onto the next one in the trilogy by tomorrow night. (Although the crafting could cut into my reading time, as well.)

Anyways, the point I'm trying to make is: I need to read more. So I am reading more.

And I think I'm actually happier for it. I feel less restless and morose. Hurrah for escapism!


In other, other news, my and my husband's anniversary is coming up this week. On the 20th, it will be four years. Hard to believe it's been that long, and yet, it seems like it's been longer. Funny how times passes.

We've already exchanged our anniversary gifts - he got a pressure canner (it sounds silly, but he really, really wanted one. We already made a batch of raspberry jam together. haha) and I got a set of lovely brass wind chimes (which I have been wanting). I love listening to them. It makes me wish it were windier here, lol.


I don't really have much more to say for now. Just kind of trying to wear my mind down before sleep.

It's not working very well.

Friday, October 7, 2011

Nyergh...

*and other random sounds of fear and discomfort*

I have a doctor's appointment today. It's just a general physical I have to go through to be able to get referrals to specialists and whatnot through the effed-up Navy system. It doesn't matter, though. You could tell me the doctor was just going to pat me on the head and ask me if I have a tummy-ache, and I WOULD STILL BE TERRIFIED.

I hate doctors. They always have cold hands, and no matter what you're telling them, they look so damn serious. I know it's the worst possible choice you could make, but I always want to keep secrets from them, because I'm afraid anything I say can and will be used against me in the diagnosis of disease. (As in, I will be diagnosed with many.) Plus I'm a hypochondriac and an anxious, paranoid type of person.

I just worry that I'm going to come away from this "general physical" finding out I have cancer or diabetes or something equally awful. (Or that they'll suck out all my blood. And they'll let an inexpert nurse do it.) And it's making me incredibly jittery.

I probably shouldn't have been drinking all that coffee this morning. It's really not helping.


In other news, still not writing. Been preoccupied with the upcoming doctor's appointment and the fact that my writing brain seems tongue-tied. (They're weak excuses, but they're the only ones I've got.)


In other, other news, I am in serious Euro-metal jam mode lately. It's usually a good thing, as it signals a wish for creative music and is followed by a desire for creative writing. Hopefully it works...


In yet further news...

Wait.

Nope. That was it.

Nothing further, I guess.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Self-Destruct

DARNIT!

I came to chill at Starbucks during Mark's duty watch, hoping that being away from home would push me into writing, and here I am... sitting in the Starbucks parking lot, leeching their internetz and doing exactly what I would have been doing at home.

Well, except for the white hot chocolate I'm drinking. I wouldn't have had that at home.


Okay now. Going to reread the document - whilst rocking to Sonata Arctica - and see what comes of it. I'll let you know how it goes later.

Maybe.

If I feel like it.

NUINIA

Another commission from the lovely and talented Anna/Astriex gives a face to our heroine, Nuinia.



Seeing her on paper makes me want to get working again, get this story written and published.

I'm working on it tomorrow...er...later today. Swear to goodness.

Sunday, October 2, 2011

I HAZ A TUMBLR!!!

http://hlwillia15.tumblr.com/


Yes, and I am now addicted. Thanks to Elise.

Friday, September 30, 2011

SUCCESS!!!

Yay! Crafting!

Today, I tried out a couple of the crafts I posted the other day. One I can't show you until tomorrow (it takes some time to dry and whatnot before I can proceed with the last steps), but here are a couple of pics to document my crafting prowess. (You can thank my wonderful husband for being willing to be silly enough to model for me.)

Without further ado, I give you the Pearl and Tulle Necklace:


...and a close up...



Hurrah! I love making things! It's so exciiiiiiiiting!

I'll post pictures of my other crafts tomorrow, I promise. :))))

Cannon Battle

If you follow me on facebook you will have seen a couple of posts (a few weeks ago) regarding a cannon battle I was fortunate enough to witness. (Well, actually, several cannon battles spaced out over two days.) It was a part of the San Diego Festival of Sail. I got to tour a number of sailing ships, including but not limited to: Star of India, HMS Surprise (as seen in PotC4!), Bill of Rights, and the Californian.

Anyways, I was selecting some photos to print and send to my grandmother and I re-stumbled upon one of the cannon battle photos I took. Had to share it here, because I LUUUUUUUUURVE it. :)

Enjoy!


Thursday, September 29, 2011

Inspiration?

So, I was cleaning out my saved pics on my computer the other night (aka: wasting time), when I came upon the following comic:


Kind of depressing, right?

But also inspiring. Or, at least, guilt-inducing enough to kick one in the motivation-pants.

After reading that comic last night, I woke up early this morning and spent most of the day cleaning, catching up with family members, and eating more fiber (yay! health!). So I supposed the depression/guilt/motivation worked.

I put this comic up as my desktop background.

Let us see if it works again tomorrow.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

It Goes On

"In three words I can sum up everything I know about life: It goes on."
- Robert Frost

BS Excuses

I'm an English buff. (It's probably obvious, since I'm a writer and the two usually go hand-in-hand.) And, like most English buffs, it is a pet peeve of mine to see people screw up elementary grammar because they didn't take the extra second to think about what they were saying.

(Side note: I also hate the phrase "pet peeve.")

I'm talking about the their/there/they're situation, as well as your/you're and its/it's. Excepting its/it's - which even I struggled with for a while - it really isn't that hard to remember which word means which thing. Especially with your and you're. The apostrophe just stands in for the missing "a" in "you are." You can tell by looking at it!

Anyway, the grammar itself isn't really my point.

The point I'm trying to make is that I hate bullshit excuses. Like needing to be "gifted" at spelling to be able to remember the rules of basic English.


You know what? I just realized what's bothering me isn't even really about that.

Okay. New point.


My point is: I hate being lectured by older people who hardly know me regarding my sensitivity to certain things/situations. Or rather: I hate being lectured by older people I hardly know who like to pretend we are familiar enough with one another that they're allowed this privilege.

The specific reason this made me think of grammar is because the lecture was regarding grammar. I used my facebook status as a mini-platform to express my frustration, and was given a lecture about my ignorance towards bad spellers, and how some people are not "gifted" with the ability to remember elementary grammar.

I don't think this would have bothered me had it been coming from my mom or my old high school English teacher (who, yes, happens to be a fb friend. nerdy, right?). They know me. Even from my mother-in-law, I would have understood. But who was this person?

The mother of a coworker (Navy buddy) of my husband, who I once met for all of twenty minutes. Following the encounter (which I thought was awkward and unpleasant, given the fact she would not stop gushing about how her son [a mannerless boor] was soo much more "gifted" than his classmates, one of whom was my husband.), she "friended" me on fb and has proceeded to stalk my every post.

I don't know why I accepted the friend request, but I am starting to get annoyed and a little creeped out by how frequently she likes and/or comments on my posts. This last one just annoyed me. (Probably ridiculous, self-righteous annoyance, but still.) I want to "unfriend" her, but...

You know what?

But nothing!

I'm going to do it right now!

Suck on that!


Sorry. Venting and being a crazy today. I feel like I've been a little unbalanced lately, and I think it's starting to show. Haha.

Just ignore me. O_o

____

Just reread this: I sound like an ass. But whatever, right? We all have those little things that bother us.

Monday, September 26, 2011

Being Crafty

It's probably due to my lack of job and my excess of free time, but I have been dying to try out new crafts lately. I've been using Stumbleupon.com to stir up some ideas. And there have been quite a few. Haven't tried any of them out yet, but I plan to very soon.

These are some of the ones I'm most interested in (aka: look the least complicated):

Frosted Glass Jar Lantern

Zipper Bracelet

Washer Necklace

Pearl and Tulle Necklace

Braided Headband

Felt Magnets

Recycled Glove Squirrel


They look fun, don't they?

Anybody else heard of any fun craft ideas lately?

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Morose and Generally Mopey

...which pretty much sums up my moods lately. Lots of moping and "depression," interspersed with small moments of happiness that quickly get squashed by my inability to think positively.

Seriously. I think my brain is trying to sabotage my every happiness. For example: the other night I was sitting on the couch with my husband, just enjoying being with him, and then suddenly it hit me - when he goes on a deployment, I will be without that simple happiness for seven months at a time. And, even though his first deployment is almost a year away (possibly longer), I started bawling.

He was, understandably, confused by this outburst.

It's not just him, though. Sometimes I'll allow myself to be contented (for a moment) that we're financially able to support ourselves without me having to get a part-time job at Taco Bell or wherever, and that I can stay home and do my own thing. Then I think: why don't I have a decent job? Why aren't I able to get one? And furthermore, why don't I have a college degree? How did I eff that up? Then it continues on and I end up asking myself the question: What do I actually do all day?

The answer: a whole lot of nothing. The internet is a curse in that way.

I mean, I do dishes. I bake. I tidy things up. I tidy myself up. Sometimes I do silly arts and crafts, just to occupy the time. What don't I do? Anything productive. I can't remember the last time I wrote something new. I haven't had a job interview in months. (That one isn't for lack of trying, though.) Lately I've been thinking about setting up an Etsy page with some of the little crafts I've done, that way I can feel like I have some sort of thing I have to keep up with... And I suspect that if I'm bringing in money, even if it's just a few dollars at a time, I might feel like I'm being at least slightly productive.


I think what really frustrates me about the whole thing is that I should be writing. It's what I use to justify away the need/want for a college degree. ("Well, if I can publish a book without one, what's the point?") It's the title I give away sometimes when people ask what I do for a living. ("Oh, I'm a writer. Currently working on a fantasy trilogy.") BUT I'M LYING. Because I'm not actually working towards anything, because I'm not actually working.

I've got a horrible spiral going. Not writing makes me depressed, but I get so depressed that I don't feel like writing.

GAH!


What's worse? I'm complaining when there's nothing actually wrong with me. I'm (mostly) healthy, we have a nice place to live, and there are people who love and care about me. I have friends. I have family. I have two adorable (albeit frustrating) dogs. I have full use of my arms and legs. Generally speaking, I have a good life. So why can't I find that place of contentment?

And why can't I find the drive to effing write!?


(Sorry this one was so negative. I'm fine, really. Just frustrated. And, I think, starting to realize just how far California is from most of the people I want to hang out with right now. Blah.)

Friday, August 19, 2011

Vacashum

I have been putting off this entry for a little while now.

Why, you ask?

Because...um... 

Elise and I haven't been working on Camp NaNo. Like, at all.

It was just one of those situations where you run (figuratively speaking) headfirst into a brick wall. And then sit in front of the wall and stare at its ominously brick-y-ness and wonder, "How the fuck did that thing get there?"

Yeah, like that.

Now, using hindsight, I can deduce that it was probably due to all the micromanaging and finicky over-brainstorming we were doing. Every little thing was tripping us up, because suddenly every little thing was So Important. We lost our groove, our flow, because we were not being chill. Ya dig?

We're going to be picking it back up here soon, but in a more chilled, less NaNoWriMo frenzy kind of way. And then hopefully we'll lose some of that GO! Stop. GOOOOOO! Wait! Stopstopstop! vibe we've been running on for a while.


In other news, I am going on vacation starting tomorrow. Mark and I will fly out of San Diego at 6am and land in the great state of Minnesota at around noon. (It's not really a six-hour flight. We lose some time because we're crossing time zones and whatnot. But you knew that.) We'll be spending a couple of days in Duluth with his parents, going fishing on Lake Superior and whatnot. Then we'll migrate south and spend some time at my parents, and seeing the many more people who live in the same general area as my parents. On Sunday the 28th, we'll fly back here. And hopefully not sink into loneliness and despair.

We won't really have much time to, I suppose, because it just so happens that my parents planned a trip out here for Labor Day weekend. So we'll see them...and then a week later, we'll see them again. Haha, love it!


In other other news, I am becoming a crafty little machine (sometimes). I sewed myself a sweater last weekend, and today I will hopefully (in between all the packing and cleaning and whatnot I have to do) be sewing another. It's great fun, but fabric is EFFING EXPENSIVE. Today I used a coupon to buy more fabric (and save $19), and then I felt like an old lady. Couponing and fabriccing and...yeah.

I'd better go now. Rambling.

Also, I have lots to do.

Ciao!

Sunday, July 31, 2011

Camp NaNoWriMo

The August session of Camp NaNoWriMo begins tomorrow. Elise and I are going for it. We were discussing tactics, and we think we're going to attempt a tougher daily quota than last time: instead of writing 1667 words per day combined, we're going to be writing 1667 words each. It may not sound impressive to you, but it most certainly is for us. And if we succeed, we'll end up with 100,000 words or more by the end of the month (instead of 50,000 - the NaNo goal).

In other words, if we succeed, we cold have a first draft of our first book before the end of this year! Woot woot!

I think that's a pretty ossum goal.

We're trying to get a little bit of a head start (NO, IT IS NOT CHEATING!), so we wrote part of a scene last night, and will hopefully work on it some more tonight. So far, we have just over 600 words. (Pitiful, I know. But we're working.)

Hopefully we can get our asses in gear by tomorrow.

I am both exhilarated and terrified by this challenge.

One thing we've decided is that we need to worry less and go with the flow more. Plot holes are okay in the first draft! Not every word needs to be perfection! We don't need to plan every breath our characters take, because we'll plan ourselves into corners. And frankly, I think all of the planning we've been doing has been taking some of the fun out of the actual writing, because we're worrying so darn much about being cohesive and whatnot.

Hopefully, in time, our villains will reveal themselves to us. We're having trouble figuring them out right now - what they really want and how they intend to get it. What's the final conflict/climax going to be? How do we move the story there? Will it flow naturally, or will we write in circles, like we did with parts of Two Captains? (Oh my giddy goodness, I hope not.)

Will we succeed this month? Only time will tell...

*sigh*

Writing is hard. Especially writing more better.

Friday, July 29, 2011

What did High School have that I don't?

I've been thinking a lot lately about how much more productive Elise and I were in high school (as writers). What was it that made us write so hard for so long? Was it because we were avoiding schoolwork? Trying to tune out our teachers? Because we were forced to sit at a desk eight hours a day and needed something to occupy our over-active imaginations? What did we have then that we don't have now?

It's certainly not time. I have all the time in the world to write. I just...don't. I couldn't tell you why, except to say that writing seems so much harder than it used to be. Probably because we're waaaaaay more concerned about rooting out and closing up plot-holes than we used to be. We're trying to make things more cohesive and whatnot.

Also, focusing is hard. Easy access to the internet is to blame for that.

I'm tired of making excuses for not writing, and I'm tired of repeating the mantra "Writers write!" and then stepping back, taking a look at my writing habits, and thinking to myself: Well, I must not be a writer, then. BAH! I want to be a writer! I want to publish books!

So I guess, as always, I need to write.

Blast it all.

Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Brianstorming

Well, Elise and I have finally made use of that wonderful program called Skype, and a lot of brianstorming (or brainstorming, if you prefer) got done because of it. And we're going to do it again tomorrow, and possibly even the next night and the one after that. There's a chance we'll participate in this August's Camp NaNoWriMo (a very good one) and actually get this whole book-thing moving again.

Actually thinking about getting this thing really rolling, and - eventually - finished is a very exhilarating, terrifying thought. After all those ideas have spilled out onto the page, will new ones replace them? Or will I be one of those one-story people? I worry about that sometimes. But I suppose, if that's the way it is, then that's the way it is. ...although I have had one or two others knocking about. It's just that I've been so focused on this big story that I haven't spent time developing them.

Either way, we'll cross that bridge when it comes.


In other news, my husband is suddenly obsessed with the apparent threat of solar storms in the next few years. Apparently such a storm would knock out all electricity. Not just knock it out, but fry all of our systems. It would take decades to fix. Decades.

So now he's pricing out a disaster kit, making up scenarios and plans about what we'd do (and need) to survive in such a situation. Obviously his main worry is that he'll be out on a deployment, on a ship, when it happens, and be unable to help me. (And be far away from the action.) My main concern is not having a nervous breakdown just thinking about the possibility of having to deal with what would basically be a post-apocalyptic situation.

I'm not a lover of that type of thing. I don't want the world to end in my lifetime, and if it does, I'm not entirely certain I'd want to survive it. (I dunno, though. I hate the idea of dying too.) So...I'm hoping this whole solar storm thing is a load of bunk, like Y2K or that end-of-the-world thing that happened this spring.

I guess we'll see.


Beyond that, I don't have much for you. It was a busy week with my sister here, but I'm not really in the mood to go into detail about the whole thing. It was a lot of sightseeing, some culinary adventures (including me becoming somewhat ambivalent about sushi, rather than full-on hating it), and a 2-hour harbor cruise, in which we saw a gray whale. Want more details? Well....no.

For now, I must get to sleep.

Good night, all.

Tuesday, July 5, 2011

May the Fourth Be With You

This Fourth of July, I got to watch six sets of simultaneous fireworks (four of which were identical, two of which were far in the distance...but still) over the San Diego harbor, the glittering skyline of the city itself as a backdrop. My husband and I wrestled a funnelcake with flimsy plastic forks, getting whipped cream and powdered sugar all over ourselves. A medley of Katy Perry's "Firework," and several other fireworky-patriotic-type songs played in the background. It was a pretty good Fourth.

Here's a clip, taken on my phone (which explains the poor quality):


In other news, my older sister will be arriving in San Diego this Friday night, to stay until the 18th. We'll get to see all the sights, the last *sob* Harry Potter movie, and possibly even the fourth Pirates movie, if the fancy takes us. Needless to say, I am SUPER EXCITED.

Currently, I'm vegging in my living room with my husband, watching Hook and feeling a variation of the antsy-ness that has been plaguing me for the last month. I need to do something. Some craft or project or something. Writing is at a dead stop, I've got no job, and schooling is out of the question at the moment. Tomorrow I'll be working on cleaning, and Thursday and Friday too, I guess. So that's something.

I should try to write a random tidbit of something, just to... I dunno. Work out my mind or something. Blah, blah, blah, blah.


Despite the "blahs," life is pretty good lately. I have nothing to whine about.

And yet I whine.

C'est la me.


EDIT: I did something productive: I drewd another picture.

TA-DAH!!! The eyes are crooked, but after five attempts to fix them, I gave up. Sometimes people have crooked eyes, and that's just the way it is. So there.

Friday, July 1, 2011

On the Fridge

The idea behind my post today is kind of random, but I suppose it makes sense. Just bear with me, and if I'm boring you, go away. Nobody wanted your opinion anyway.


As I was sitting here, trying to think of an idea for an entry that was not either a) depressing, or b) whiny, or c) A and B combined, I took a good look at the side of my refrigerator. Since I'm sitting at the dining room table, it's not unreasonable that I would be doing this - it's right across from me. But anyway... if someone who didn't know me took a look at my refrigerator, they'd just see a hodge-podge of crap and clutter (albeit very brightly-colored crap and clutter). But for someone who does know me (and, I suppose, Mark), they'd see a number of insights to our lives, interests, inside jokes and whatnot.

Just look... (It's a crappy, blurry picture, but look anyway, darn you!)



For instance, you'll notice one or two dinosaur-related magnets and pictures. Those are because of my husband, who - one day, out of the blue - made my sister and I bust into hysterics with the following words: "You know what I'm thinking about? ...Dinosaurs." (Once or twice, I have found him in what appeared to be a deeply depressed funk. When asked what was the matter, he has responded with, "I'm just really sad that I'll never get to see an actual dinosaur.") Yes. He is a nerd. My older sister and I often gift him with dinosaur memorabilia now. Thus, the dinosaur magnets/picture.

"KARAS SMASH WORDZ" is an inside joke with Mark and some of his Navy buddies, involving a strange individual named - you guessed it - Karas. Even I'm not sure the what the whole story is behind that one, but I leave it up because it makes them smile whenever they come to visit.

There are several state magnets - mementos from a few of the states my Mom and I had to drive through as we made our way out to sunny California.

"Pirate Girls Kick Butt" - fans of Two Captains could easily tell you why I have that. :)

"Can I Have the Last Life Vest?" is from a book of comedy post cards called Asking Awkward Questions With Baby Animals. It's the sequel to another book entitled Breaking Bad News With Baby Animals. My older sister and I like to send them back and forth. If you could look at the back of the postcard, you'd see the caption my sister added - "You can swim, right?"    (I miss her. Thank god she's coming to visit next week!)

I love the TV show The Office, as you might be able to guess from some of the other magnets.

"Marzipan aka Marissa" is my loverly cousin, who is pictured with her impish little brother, David Joel further up on the fridge.

And last, but not least, is my favorite picture EVAR of Elise and I.


I have no idea if any of this is boring. I just felt like giving you all a tour of my refrigerator. (Who ever guessed it could be such a personal, life-affirming experience!?) Consider yourself lucky, because usually only people who are in my apartment get to see that. And my apartment is like my secret lair. Only my closet confidantes - and whoever Mark decides to invite over - ever get to see inside it. (Oh, and everyone I'm friends with on FB, since I posted many pictures of it.) Still... you're so very, very lucky.

And...yeah. That's all, I guess.

Have an ossum Fourth of July, e'erbody!

Monday, June 27, 2011

Thank You, NyQuil

I'm starting to feel better, thanks to regular doses of NyQuil and herbal tea. Unfortunately, I managed to pass along my cold to my husband - just one of those safety hazards of being married. He doesn't seem to be doing too badly, though, so I'm not too worried.

I was actually productive today, for the first time in a while. I woke up at a decent time, cleaned up the apartment, did dishes, BRIANSTORMED WITH ELISE (or brainstormed. However you decide to pronounce it.), and even sketched a picture.

Yes! I drewd a picture! Want to see it!?

Too bad! You're going to see it anyway!

It took me forever, but I did it. (EDIT: The more I look at it, the more I realize that she has giant hair. I often get carried away with the volume of people's hair when I'm sketching.)


And this is what I saw the entire time I was working on it:


That is my golden retriever, Mango. And that is where she hangs out whenever I am working at the dining room table. She just sits and breathes on me until I pay attention to her. Just look at that face - "Mommy! Mommy! Why are you doing that when you could be petting meeeeeee!?!?"

She's doing it right this very minute, as I type this.

I suppose I'd better pet her, or she'll never leave me alone.


Just wanted to update and let you know that, despite my constant whining, things aren't going too badly around here lately. :)

Don't cry for me, Argentina. (Or any other country, for that matter.) The truth is, I'm doing fine.

Saturday, June 25, 2011

Quarantine

This being sick stuff sucks.

Everybody is hanging out tonight - including my husband - but I get to stay home and do nothing, because I'm a germy leper, full of infection.

This isn't much of an entry. I just needed a moment of self-pity, is all.

Thursday, June 23, 2011

Too Much Beauty

I follow this blog called The Literary Lab - a blog dedicated to writing about writing. The other day, they posted an entry that I found very interesting, mostly because it reminded me of Two Captains (at least in part.)

"Too Much Beauty"

Not that Two Captains is an excellent example of literature contrasting light and darkness, but... We have gotten one or two reviews that bash us for being so gruesome at times. Now, we are the first ones to admit that we are not very nice to our characters, but I think that some level of pain is required for a character to truly grow. (As I've mentioned before, I am not particularly religious, but one phrase from the Bible comes to mind: "refined through fire." You know, the process where a person must face hardship to become, well, better?) And, as the article said, without the darkness, the light doesn't seem so special. The shadow proves the sunshine.


I'm being a little rambly today. I feel like my thoughts aren't completely coherent, and I apologize for that. I recently got over a nasty sinus infection, which had my brain scrambled, and then - guess what! - I came down with yet another cold yesterday. So far today I am feeling like an absolute cesspool of bacteria and disease, and I have been able to concentrate on little else. Forgive me.


In other news, I was afforded the opportunity to be a part of the Conan studio audience this past Monday. It was pretty cool - got to walk around the Warner Bros studio lot (was not allowed to take pics, though) and see the studios where they filmed Casablanca, Friends, and Oceans 11. Too bad I didn't get to see the Harry Potter set. (Do they even film in America? I'm not sure...)

But I was on TV for a split second. Check it out:


Look at the far right side of the picture, right next to the guy in the khakis who didn't quite make it into the shot. I'm the one in the gray shirt and black cardigan, with my sunglasses on my head.

WOOT! I'm a TV star! (Not.)

But it was still a really great, really fun experience.