17 December 2010

Voc Rehab

I'm leaving for Voc Rehab in just a minute--so quickly, in fact, that I did not get to finish the preamble.

I'm waiting in the lobby now, because my friend BS is "talking about me behind my back", is what she said, but who knows. She may tell me when she's done.

We talked to my counselor's supervisor about what's been going on, specifically about my anxiety that seems to accompany authority figures (who are usually male--like my counselor), and about how slowly things have seemed to be going with him.

The supervisor seemed more concerned with how slowly things were going than with my anxiety--not that he wasn't concerned about the anxiety, he merely felt that the anxiety itself should be addressed, rather than skirting me around any dangerous territory. I'm basically okay with that. But he talked about setting specific, I don't know, benchmarks that, if we didn't find them happening within a timely manner, if we felt we weren't getting the service we needed, we were to talk to him about it. We didn't actually do it, so I don't know how that helps, but ...

(BS was asking about her position as my "advocate" and whether she was "helping" too much ... )

I also got them the name and number of a counselor/therapist/whatever (someday I'll learn the difference between the terms) who's been working with my family somewhat, and wanted to work with me. She was in their list of okay people, so that was good.

It's been a long day, and I'm tired. More later.

10 December 2010

If I'm not fucked up, if I'm not using drugs, if I don't have an eating disorder, if I'm not on any medications, if I've never attempted suicide, how can I justify not being happy?

09 December 2010

Moving On

So many different thoughts flying in my head at once. Voc Eval finished, and I almost wish they would keep everyone a full week, because that might be a decent test of how well a person can bear up under that schedule. BS says a lot of their clients can't. I thought it would be a cakewalk, but I think I was starting to show strain.

Tuesday was harder than Monday, with me employing my coping mechanisms more frequently (mostly homeopathic stress reliefs, but also one thing that could be termed "unhealthy", and thus will not go on the internet). Wednesday, while I was waiting, I laid my head down on my desk and fell asleep for a little while. Also, Wednesday saw me pull out my coping mechanisms very frequently.

And, fortunately for me, we were done yesterday, because I slept till 2:30pm today, which almost never happens. Granted, I did stay up till 2am, because I knew I didn't have to get up, but when I do that, I usually wake at 10am.

I was thinking earlier, before I sat down to do this, that it's a wonder I blog at all. I have this omnipresent belief that unless someone asks me a direct question, they're probably not interested in what I have to say.

And yet, here I am, sending information about myself into the ether, but I think it's because people wouldn't look at my blog unless they wanted to know what I have to say. If they weren't interested, they could just close the tab or window.

Whereas, in conversation with real humans, it may not be considered polite to tell someone you just don't care, will you please shut up. So I opt to shut up in the first place, and if you want to know something, you can ask.

Vocational Evaluation, Take 3

Good morning. Sitting in the Voc Eval place, waiting for my evaluator to finish with explaining the computer test to one of the other people. There's three people here today, but it's just after nine, so the fourth might be coming. Or he might be that guy sitting at a different table, working on something. I can't tell if he looks familiar or not. Probably not.

Anyway, once the evaluator is done, he'll pick either me, or the other guy waiting, and get us started. But for now, I'm just sitting.

Tests today included motor coordination, finger dexterity and manual dexterity. I feel like I did not do perfectly on any of them, but he marked me high on all of them, except the wiring one, because there wasn't any wiggle room: my score was how many tiny metal circles I got the "wire" through, out of twenty. I felt that was particularly low, but he said most of the people who do that test get lower scores.

I also did the Computer Operator Aptitude Battery, which involved three parts: logical thinking, pattern recognition, and one other that I cannot remember. The logical thinking one was the best: brain puzzles, basically, and it took me fourteen of the thirty minutes given me to do it.

If I remember what he said about my scores, I got between the 90th and 99th percentile on each of the tests, and unlike the other tests I took, I wasn't being compared against Random Population A, but against computer people. And I got the 99th percentile in something. (I don't remember which. I'm hoping I'll get all this information printed out and handed to me at one of my next Voc Rehab appointments, so I can take it home and frame it.)

And then he told me I was done, that the testing was done, and I had nothing else to do. So, this adventure with Voc Eval is at its end, which is good in a way: I was getting nothing done. Well, I did manage to write some during my breaks. But mostly I didn't have the energy after a session to do anything at all ...

07 December 2010

Vocational Evaluation, Take 2

Today feels like a waste of time. My evaluator seems unable to handle more than one person at a time: yesterday there were four people, and he decided to split us into two today and two tomorrow. And even so, I'm not doing anything. I filled out more bubbles, but he gave me those forms last night, and due to preparing for my game, I didn't have time to fill those out at home. I thought it'd be okay: I'll fill these in in my spare moments, when he's dealing with other people.

Well, I've been here for two and half hours. I filled in the bubbles, and then, because I couldn't find him, I started transcribing my list of (actually nineteen) ideal careers onto a clean sheet of paper in legible writing, and with the "catalog numbers" listed with them.

Then he came by, and said he would give me something to do, and walked away to his office, so I pulled out my netbook and began writing. He interrupted me to have me do a computer test: the kind that tests interests (again), and then the fun kind that ask you to match patterns and solve problems and know what words mean in a short amount of time. The pattern matching (figuring out a shape from a pattern of a shape) was the only one I finished every question in, and with time to spare.

I got the 99th percentile on Spatial Aptitude and Clerical Perception--and until BS reminded me how percentiles work (that out of 100 people, 99 of them scored below me) I saw the 99 and said, "What? I only got 99% on Spatial Aptitude? I should have gotten 100%, bitches!" in my super-perfectionist way. I also got 97th on Form Perception, and only 94th on General Learning Ability. What I actually feel bad about is my 85th on Verbal Aptitude--I'm a freakin' writer, how did I not get at least the 90th on that?

I won't list everything here, because that would put me over my word count limit, but I scored 100% interest in Artistic, Plants/Animals, and Mechanical, and I'm walking away with two or three different lists of jobs that I am both interested in, and probably good at.

So, now I just put them all on a dart board and start throwing?

I am going in tomorrow, but probably not for the whole time--I get to test my manual dexterity, finger dexterity and motor coordination. My evaluator doesn't think it's necessary, because I'm not likely to want to lay bricks or distribute handbills, but I pointed out I might want to play a piano, and then said that I like to learn things, especially about myself, and he agreed, basically, to cater to my whim, which I did not expect.

06 December 2010

Vocational Evaluation

Haven't written in a few days. This entry will probably take all day to write, but that's okay because I have no internet here.

I have two fifteen minute breaks, and an hour for lunch. I'm only here for six hours ... that's a schedule I can live with!

Doing Vocational Evaluation testing. So far just filling out forms about my work experience and why I have trouble getting and keeping jobs (anxiety issues rank high, here), and then one long fill-in-the-bubbles sort of form asking what I like or would like in activities, subjects to study and jobs. Never understood the purpose of those things: Don't worry about whether you would be good at it, or how well it pays ... I don't understand how that helps, but I guess I can trust in the system.

Anyway, finished my banana and egg, so, back to the table to fill out more forms--oh, yeah, he'd handed us some shiny magazines that talk about jobs ... sort of like a miniature OOH. So we get to look at those and write down "five to ten" jobs we'd like. Riiight ...

I wrote eighteen ideal jobs. Yay, me!

Also, they let me go early, so I didn't have a last break in which to write this. I'm writing now in the lobby, waiting for my friend BS, who dropped me off here. (This building is at about 1500 W, and I don't know if there are any buses in the world that go here ... )

So. I got to peek at my file, and I found that Voc Rehab's psych evaluation of me got me the diagnoses of Major Depression and Anxiety Disorder NOS (Not Otherwise Specified basically means the anxiety doesn't meet the criteria for any other disorder).

My "counselor"--I'm not actually sure what it's called--no, wait, my "evaluator" (that's fun) talked to me for a little bit at the end. He was impressed with my college degree, and commented that I must be quite intelligent.

He asked if I was feeling anxious about this evaluation, and to be honest, this is kind of a cakewalk--at least so far. It's all on paper, there's been very little personal interaction. While I was in his office (part of which time was spent waiting), I was more anxious, but I was forewarned, and brought all my coping mechanisms today.

He gave me some forms to fill out either tonight or tomorrow in the evaluation--more testing what I like and what I value.

I'm feeling slightly anxious now--it's a feeling of walking on eggshells, of, I guess, vulnerability. That's usually a sign to watch out for triggers, because whatever happens next will help influence which way my mood will fall: depression, anxiety, or mania ...

03 December 2010

Repeat After Me:

Alcohol is poison.
But it's so much fun! How can fun be poison?
Because I had one small drink last night, around six, plenty of water afterward, and now ... 17 hours later, I still have an awful headache.
So, what lesson have we learned?
Alcohol continues to be poison.

I feel like it's a Catch-22: I react to alcohol more strongly now than when I was drinking more frequently, because I don't drink much ... but I stopped drinking as much, because it was starting to affect me more ...
So, I feel like it should be something I can work up to again, but at this point ... I don't know if it's worthwhile ... the headache and the general sense of having been poisoned will continue for at least the rest of the day, though I'll take something for the pain in a minute.

Gratitude Journal

It's late, so I'm going to be brief ... in fact, I should probably save the story of my gratitude journals for another day.
I actually haven't written in my paper journal yet today ... but I will, just before I go to bed. And what I will write will be way too personal for this public blog.
So I will limit this note to:
1) I am grateful for my friend NF who has been the origin of many of the creative thoughts that have run through my brain lately. Just in case you read this, dear: you're great fun, and I hope to continue brainstorming with you.
2) I'm grateful to DP for understanding me and accepting me as I am.

Okay, I'm fucking tired. Time to get ready for bed.

02 December 2010

A New Idea!

Wow, they're just all over, aren't they? (New ideas.)

Well, I was reading dither's blog (again, you can follow this elegant and finely crafted link), wherein his comic got fan art! (Which is totally cool.)
Well, he has mentioned sprites before, but here he says the magic phrase: sprite comic format. I had to look it up. (See the other Wiki to see what I read.) And then DP clarified it for me.
Basically, you take static elements, and then put them together. Computer graphics, tiny pixellated blobs of color, and static backgrounds. You tell a story basically with props, instead of with amazing artwork.
Well, it takes me way too long to draw anything (I have, I can, but not in any sustained way, not really), and I don't have a video gaming or computer-related background. So here's how the idea morphed in my head:
Paper dolls!

I'm going to draw the backgrounds and dolls myself, including clothes and other props. I haven't decided yet how I'll put the whole thing together, but I have some options. The end product will be something basically comic-book-like, but I'll actually be able to produce it, and keep updating it.
This is exciting!

Trying Something New

Actually, trying a few new things. Let's see if I can enumerate them all:

First: I'd like to try updating at least once per week. That feels really weak, but I know myself, and I know that when I'm manic it's totally easy for me to believe that I can update every day, and write three novels, and get back into deviantART and start planning my cooking show, etc. So, I'm starting small.

Second: To encourage myself to update more than once per week, I'm going to try to limit my updates. I have a tendency to write really long blog posts every three months, and I think that deters me from writing more often. I believe my friend dither (of the blog mentioned in the last update--and yes, I'm starting to actually think of you as dither, even though I first met you in real life ... ) has a minimum word requirement for his blogs: I might make a maximum requirement. No more than ... I don't know yet. I also don't want to say it, because this update will probably go (way) past it ...

Third: Without going into too much detail, my family attempted some open and honest communication this weekend ... the part that is pertinent to this is the part where I was told that I focus too much on the negative. Skipping over all the things I could say to that, even the ones I am remotely tempted to say in response to that, I'll just say that I started thinking about doing a gratitude journal again. Um, there's way too much there to sum up, so maybe that will be an extra update, but suffice it to say (for now) that I thought maybe it'd be a good idea to post ... not everything that I put in my paper gratitude journal, but some of it.

Fourth: I will go into my plan for this year (I make plans when manic) in another update, but I'd like to update you all on my various creative projects. I'll post pictures when that makes sense, or maybe snippets of writing that I'm doing, or whatever. I have ideas about what I'm going to do this coming year, and I'd like you all to be a part of it.

So, minimum number of posts per week + maximum number of words per post + at least two specific "topics" (which will go into different updates) = I think I'll update multiple times per week.
Okay, so this post is a little over four hundred and fifty words total. I think I might place the cap at five hundred. I'll have to look at what this post looks like to be certain, but I think that's it.

Love you all, thanks for reading.

14 November 2010

broken girl

Hey, I'm writing!
It's crazy, I know. It's November, which means I'm busily working on a novel, and, as a rule, I only update Facebook in November, and that's mostly just word count.
Also, I'm sick, which means I should be drinking orange juice and sipping tea and eating soup all day long, from the comfort of my bed, right?
Well, I have had both orange juice and soup, I've got some tea right in front of me, and I've been in bed a lot of the day. But I also wrote over 2,250 words today, and I watched an episode of Kamikaze Kaitou Jeanne (one of my favorite animes) with DP (before a short nap).
Now I'm up, because I'm drinking more tea, and I'm looking at--and being inspired by--a friend's blog. (See it through this elegant and finely-crafted link.)
So, I'm inspired to write in my blog. I don't think I can do multiple daily updates, but maybe I can do multiple weekly updates?

So, NaNo update, since I'm here:
Finished all the Changeling stories, yay! The last one's a bit short, but once I can slow down some, I'll be able to flesh it out.
I find that when I'm able to write slowly, my first drafts are not very rough, because I'm taking at least a year to write a long story. But when I'm writing a story in a matter of days, it's very rough, and I'm interested in finding out how long the first revision process will take.
I started Lifechanger today, or rather, I started finishing Lifechanger today. It's last year's NaNo, and I'm actually very proud of it, because I basically took MANY threads my brain was chewing on around that time and wove it together into a complex novel with an interesting storyline. (Especially once I figure out what role the mother plays ... )
And it's not proving that hard to get back into it, even with Changeling making my brain all twisted and dark and scary ... yes, just as though it weren't already.

Oh, and I've hit the halfway mark. Go me!

29 September 2010

Please Comment

Multiple people have noted that they are not able to leave comments on my blog, and my friend Hari suggested that individual blogs are just having comment comment issues.
I've changed people-who-can-comment from "Registered User" to "Anyone", even though that means I will get lots of links to porn sites in my comments. Do me the favor (please), of attempting to comment. If you can't, let me know either via email or Facebook, or the next time you see me, whatever.

Also, I would like to note that my friend Hari did some research for me, and presented me with a word I had seen once, but forgotten about: arils, which are the little seedfruits of a pomegranate. Thanks, Hari!

25 September 2010

How to Eat a Pomegranate

Pomegranate season begins. My favorite. Pomegranates are tart, sticky, sweet, crunchy, and just filled with yumminess. I first tasted them last year, and this year I'm hoping to learn to cook with them maybe, or add them to salads at least (they might be a good substitute for cranberries in my Crannberry Quinoa Salad).
But, my first pomegranate of the season is simply going to be eaten. And shared with all of you, of course. This post is a tutorial: How to Eat a Pomegranate.
Of course, you can just cut one in half and rip these seeds out, spilling juice everywhere and sacrificing seeds ... but in my opinion, pomegranates are just too good to waste even a single seed. Plus, I always hated it when I had slices of orange, rather than the natural segments ... I feel the same way about pomegranates.

This is the pomegranate I bought. It's on the stove because there's strong light there, for my pictures.
Get two bowls: one for the fruit (seeds), and one for the flesh (the skin, the pith). Cut four (or three or five, but I'm drawn to four, even though pomegranates are slightly pentagonal in shape) slits in the center, starting from the crown. Don't make them very deep. Cut out the crown, but again, be careful. Leave white pith showing.
Peel the skin away from the fruit. You will get juice on your hands (because seeds will be cut or will burst under the pressure of your fingertips, no matter how careful you are), and it's sticky. Lick it off, it's yummy.
Pith will stick to the seeds. Pull it off, it's not as yummy.
As you peel, seeds will come off in your hands, place them in the seed collecting bowl (or you can eat the whole thing as you go, but I like to save them all up, and then have a bowl of yummy fruit to eat without interruption). Place the peels and other pieces in the other bowl.

Sorry for the darkness of the picture ... it was a hard shot to get, with me using both my hands to pull apart this goddess of yummy yumminess.
Grab hold of the pith; do your best to always exert pressure on the pith and skin, rather than on the seeds. Aside from the aforementioned "seed loss", if a seed explodes in your face, the juice will sting your eyes.
Rip it in half. It's a delicate process, but it's also fun, because you can't be too delicate with it, if you want the fruit to pull apart.
If there are any seeds that are less vibrant or squishier than the others, throw those in the discard bowl; they're not as yummy.
Tear the fruit into small segments and sort of brush the seeds off the membrane walls. Some will need more force, but mostly be gentle with your fruit, or it will bruise or burst.
Keep going until you have a bowl of yummy fruit!
Now, sit down with something yummy to drink (like tea or wine), a book (I'm reading shine, coconut moon, by Neesha Meminger) or a movie, and enjoy yourself with a delicious snack. Doesn't it look amazing and yummy?

19 September 2010

Farmer's Market = Happiness

Yesterday, Dylan and I went to the Farmer's Market. Despite the fact that we got a really late start on the day, and despite the fact that I somehow imprinted on 2pm as the closing time of the Market, rather than 1pm, which is when they actually close, we managed to get some yummy food, and a couple of good deals, because people were closing up.
We got heirloom tomatoes, some amazing apples, one small, very ripe cantaloupe (which we will eat today, probably with lunch), a small watermelon, some gorgeous peaches and a few bundles of garlic, and some tiny pieces of Brazilian Gluten Free bread (made with tapioca flour ... she imports the manioc from South America and makes it into flour herself). I also got a few daffodil bulbs.
We walked home (carrying the watermelon), and when we got home, we made a salad with greens we'd already had in the fridge (red leaf lettuce, spinach, a tiny bit of kale), carrots (shredded), a cucumber from my friends (via the CSA), some goat cheese, and two heirloom tomatoes.
Before eating, I took the tempeh out of the fridge, cut it into cubes, and put it in a bowl with red wine vinegar and some herbs. I put that back into the fridge to marinate.
I had to go to work after lunch for my schedule, so I got a couple things there, including more GF pasta. I'd had an idea ever since we walked out of the Farmer's Market with those heirloom tomatoes.
The tempeh and some onions we'd already had went into the wok-style fry pan with a blend of canola and olive oils. Then went in the mushrooms, the olives, the dried herbs (oregano, marjoram, and rosemary), and finally the heirloom tomatoes and fresh basil. We got out two soup plates (the large, flat bowls) and spooned out some GF pasta (shells!) and poured some of this delight over the shells. Then we grated some sheep-cheese (Pecorino Romano) over it all.
I was a little nervous starting out, because though I've had it in my fridge a while, I've never cooked or eaten tempeh before. It's made of soy, so it didn't have much taste (maybe a little of the marinade--I didn't get to marinade it very long), but I liked the texture better than tofu, so I think I'll continue cooking with it. The heirloom tomatoes were amazing, and the whole barely-cooked vegetables with tempeh and cooked onions over pasta deal was delicious. I especially loved the yellow tomatoes; it added fun color.

I'm on the hunt, currently, for tapioca and sorghum flours. They are the main ingredients to two recipes in Gluten-Free Girl: tapioca flour (or starch, I can't remember) for Lemon Cookies and sorghum flour for bread.
Anyway, gotta go. Dylan and I are seeing Eat, Pray, Love this afternoon, and we have to finish getting ready and head out.

16 September 2010

Pan-Seared Salmon and GF Cupcakes

Food is way more interesting than malaise.
Last night, instead of our usual frozen fish filets, boiled/steamed, frozen tater tots and frozen veggies (it's a staple), we had pan-seared salmon, quinoa and fresh (steamed) broccoli.
I'm reading a book called Gluten-Free Girl (she also has a blog), and it's filled with how to use food, as well as recipes, and anecdotes about food that are just mouthwatering.
One of the recipes was for pan-seared salmon. The salmon still started out frozen (and next time, I'll give it more time to thaw before starting), but we cooked it on the stove in olive oil, and then moved the pan to the oven for a couple minutes.
(While the oven was heating and the salmon was sitting on the counter--after sitting in the fridge for a couple of hours--the quinoa cooked with steamer baskets above filled with broccoli bits.)
It all would have been wonderful.
I very carefully grabbed two hot pads with which to pull the pan of fish out of the oven, and set it on the stove. DP suggested turning them over and putting them in for one minute longer. Though the recipe didn't say to, I figured we could try it, so I grabbed the handle ... And then stood at the sink for half an hour, running cold water over my hand.
Eventually we did eat, and I managed to put a lid on the salmon and leave the lid on the broccoli-and-quinoa, so everything was still warm when we sat down to eat. And though it was very yummy, I think it would have been better if it hadn't all stood there for half an hour.
I iced my hand while eating--eating with my left hand sucked--and ran it under cold water some more after eating, and I've been slathering my hand with aloe vera ever since.
It doesn't really hurt today; the skin's a little stiff, but I think that just requires more aloe.

It was my friend's birthday earlier this week, and tonight is the first time I get to see her since then. We're having a mini-party at writing group tonight, and I'm bringing Gluten-Free Cupcakes. Alas, they come from a mix, so there's not much in the way of exciting finds ... except this picture.
DP's friend Ben has chickens. He gives eggs to his coworkers. We had three Ben-eggs and three regular white store-bought eggs. The mix called for four eggs.
Guess which ones I used?

Three dark yolks from Ben's eggs, one bright-yellow yolk from the store-bought eggs. I'd never had a chance to compare them side-by-side like that ...

Anyway, more adventures with food are bound to show up here. Gluten-Free Girl is inspiring me to not just play in my kitchen more and to try new foods, but also to examine every single thing I put in my body more closely. I'm still feeling less than 100%, and it might not all be food, but food is one thing I can control, so why shouldn't I try to pull all gluten out of my diet?
Love you all!

15 September 2010

No energy. Fatigue. So much pain (especially headaches, joint pain, back pain). My gut is constantly disturbed. I'm either never hungry, or still starving after eating.
Food isn't food to my body; I don't want anything. I'm depressed. I am so tired of all of this, I just want to be done with it. Emotions are distant things; motivation is absent.
DP is fixing dinner (because he's a wonderful human being and takes care of me far beyond what I deserve), and though I can smell the tater tots and fish, my stomach is still feeling rebellious and, at the same time, completely disinterested.
I get exhausted at about 8pm. I spend the day in a brain fog, with no motivation to do anything. I start weeping for no obvious reason. Right now I am in too much pain (my back/spine, my neck, my joints, m head, my jaw, the lower back muscles, my shoulders) for me to be able to stand doing anything for more than a couple minutes.

Food might be ready, and I can't find a comfortable way to sit and write. Sorry, both for the short length of this blog, and for the topic. I don't like going on (online) about all the ways my life/health sucks. I feel like it gets boring.
Hopefully sleep will help ...

07 September 2010

I'm at a coffee shop in 15th&15th, and I have to work later this afternoon, and I have to make a stop at the downtown library before work, so this won't be long.
Today I made the trek to 15th&15th (my new address is 13th and 10th, so this is about as close as 9th&9th, plus it has The King's English, which 9th&9th certainly doesn't have ... ), and I'm pleased with it. There's an Einstein's Bagels, which unfortunately has nothing I can eat, but I have fond memories of Einstein's from my wheat-eating days (DP and I walking to Einstein's between first and second service, because I hadn't gotten any breakfast ... this was before we were dating). There's a couple restaurants, which would be good if DP and I needed an evening out and were capable of thinking of dinner before ten pm. There's the aforementioned King's English, and the Starbuck's I'm at right now ... unfortunately, there doesn't seem to be any little local coffee shops in the area. And there's Tony Caputo's market, which is a little expensive, I think, but it's local and good.

I'm feeling depressed, and I might be cramping/nauseated/hungry; I can't tell. I just know that my middle is uncomfortable.
DP and I (with the help of our dear friends) put in some work in the kitchen, going through the dishes we collectively own. We didn't get through the entire thing, but we now have a decent selection of pots&pans and baking dishes, and we don't have a lot of crappy plastic storage containers--we put the crappy/mismatched ones in either the recycling or the donate box; we'll need some more containers, but good quality. We also have a donate box or two that will hang out for a little while just in case we really miss that one pot, or something. We went through the cleaning supplies, and have some things that we're just going to use up and then replace with environmentally friendlier stuff, and we have a box full of toxic waste that we'll get rid of through the toxic-waste-getting-rid-of-place. (I don't remember what it's called, only that it exists.)
We have enough room in our kitchen for two drying racks--there's a washer that we share with the upstairs people, but no dryer. We may buy a dryer at some point to share with the upstairs people, or we may continue using the drying racks. Two drying racks can dry a decent load of laundry, so I'm inclined to keep doing it this way until this way breaks down, for whatever reason.
Hopefully, there will soon be enough room in our kitchen for two drying racks and a kitchen table. Hopefully, we'll get a kitchen table sometime soon.
We also need to clear out the "Attic", which will be the Office as soon as we get enough boxes out to have both our computers in it. DP is inheriting a desk from a friend of ours, so we need enough space in the room for that Real Soon Now. My desk, complete with computer, is already in there, but I had a desk already.
We made soup the other day; a whole lot of it, because DP has a huge soup pot. Most of it went into the freezer, and I'd like to make another batch soon, but I think we'll need more serving-sized plastic containers first.

Anyway, I need to head out, go home to collect the book that is absolutely due today, and head to the library to drop that off and pick up a book that's on hold for me, so I can eat something before I head to work around 4pm.
Oh, I went to a bike shop DP recommended, and bought panniers for my bike, so that I could ride my bike to and from work, and pick up groceries after work and have a way to carry them. I've been riding down the hill to work, and then biking to the train station, taking the train back up the hill, and then biking home from the train station, but Sunday after work I biked up the hill! It actually took less time than the train route (even assuming that I don't wait for the train at all). I'll have to work up to not needing to rest so much--that hill's a bitch--but it was good.
Anyway, time to go. Love you all.

10 August 2010


I'd wanted to post a detailed account of the situation up to now, but ... I just spent two hours playing Age of Empires instead of working on the house stuff. Which, technically, I said I'd start tomorrow, so I sorta have a free day, but there's other things to do besides pack, sooo ...
Anyway, DP and I found a lovely place a few blocks east of 9th & 9th (which is where I work), and we're moving in very soon: DP has to be out of his place by the 22nd. I'm good until the end of the month, but I'll probably still start moving things before then, and possibly start living there when DP does (and then continue to move the non-daily essentials in).
We'll see how it goes.
I'll try to post frequently, if not in-depth-ly, but no guarantees.
NOW! Off to do laundry and gather artesian well-water (don't know if I'll be able to continue to do that once I've moved ... I'll be eight or more blocks away from the well ... /sadface/).
Love you all.

04 August 2010


Feeling depressed, anxious. I'm thinking about quitting my life (except for work) for one week. That way, I would always know where I was supposed to be and what was expected of me (except for work). I would quite possibly refuse to talk to anyone except my roommate and my boyfriend (and work). I wouldn't go online, I'd just read and sleep and write and drink tea and listen to music. Maybe I'd watch movies and The Guild and other things that are on the internet. But I wouldn't check my email or anything. I wouldn't attend any social activities (though Tuesday night gaming that takes place at my house might be difficult to avoid; I'd have to visit my boyfriend, I guess).
I really feel like that would lower my anxiety levels considerably.

I'm eating chocolate pudding and drinking sleepy tea. Gaming is over, DP was at work until midnight, and I work tomorrow at eleven. I'm feeling really anxious. And depressed.

27 July 2010

July is coming to a close. Thank you, July, you've been wonderful. A little hot, maybe, but it always happens that way, and out here in Utah, August cools down a bit. So that's alright.
In the past week and a half or so, I've started watching Avatar the Last Airbender again, I've continued work on a short story that I absolutely must present to my writing group in a week and a half if I want to retain my membership privileges, and I started playing Age of Empires, found my long-lost AoE2 disk (and managed to retrieve it from my non-functional laptop) and then discovered that it was really the Conqueror's Expansion that I remembered, and I have begun to read New Moon (I think it's worse than Twilight, and I think it's because we start with the whole Edward-is-so-perfect-I-just-want-to-barf stuff right off ... at least in the first one it took a little while ... ).
Also, yesterday while waiting for the bus in the drizzle for half an hour, I read the cover story of In This Week, and decided that what I want to do is to become a burlesque dancer. And in the slight mania I've been feeling lately, I came with a way to do everything I want to do, going slowly and adding in new things one at a time. We'll see how it works.

Anyway, I should eat lunch, and run an errand to ask for Sunday off and get an August bus pass ... love you all!!

21 July 2010

Teen Romance + Selkies

This seems to be the start of an irregularly updated podcast. Listen and enjoy.

Some things mentioned in the podcast:
The Wikipedia article about Selkies
The Mabinogion Tetralogy by Evangeline Walton
The named characters of the Celtic myth: Blodeuwedd, Lugh (really it's Lleu Llaw Gyffes, but I figured this alternate would work)

Thank you for listening. I really do have plans for a novel about selkies, though how much teen romance will be in it I can't yet say for sure. However, I have one or two other little projects demanding my attention first. Stay tuned for the next podcast update: the Twilight Review!

18 July 2010

twenty-seven years

I'm sitting in the kitchen (pulled a chair in from the front room), keeping DP company while he washes some dishes and cleans out the teapot that I overboiled (a lot) the other night. We'll have breakfast at some point.
After that? I don't really have plans for today, which is okay in some ways. DP and I talked about going to Discovery Gateway, which I think is the plan with the best chance, considering I saw Sorcerer's Apprentice last night and The Last Airbender last weekend.
I am going to do fireworks tonight; it's been a birthday tradition for a couple of years now.
I had my family birthday last night, and it was good. We played Killer Bunnies just like I wanted (though we didn't get to finish the game), and we ate chicken and corn and mashed potatoes (with gluten-free gravy) and watermelon and gluten-free cake with homemade frosting, yay! Then we saw Sorcerer's Apprentice, which, except for the "Morgana le Fay is the most evil sorcerer in the entire world, and she's the Big Bad" part, it was pretty good for a full-length movie inspired by an animated short.

Anyway, have a lovely day, all. I'll chat with you more later.

07 July 2010

If I Fall (chorus)

This is (probably) the chorus of the song I'm working on. Give it a listen, let me know what you think ...

P.S. MAJOR thanks to this video tutorial for being the only person I could find who knew how to do this. Woot.

06 July 2010

If I Fall

I started writing some music yesterday ... and by writing music, I definitely don't mean actually writing anything down (though I did jot down some proto-lyrics just hoping the little note would help me actually remember the tune of what is probably the chorus long enough to sing it all the way through).
I was at work, and I started humming, and I started recording the bits of tune into my phone, just so I'd remember it. When I got home, I downloaded Audacity onto my computer, and started recording on my computer. I've come up with some words along the way, and I have a full chorus, and maybe even a real verse ... though no more than one.
I would love to post the chorus as a .WAV file here, but I'm not sure how yet. (Help?)
I also have no idea how to do anything but come up with the vox. I don't really play any instruments (sorta know how to play the piano, right hand only; I'm trying to teach myself the violin but I've been neglecting it--though not for long, I have a friend who will at least help me tune it; etc.), really I'm just a vocalist.
I was thinking the song might go on my CD of poetry that I've been working on for a couple years now (off and on--and now it's on, baby, since I have a way to record myself again). The idea for that was to record some of my poetry and give the CD to my friends and family. We'll see.
Anyway, as soon as I figure out how to share the music, I'll do that. Love you all.

02 July 2010

Summer Solstice

And since I mentioned it in an earlier blog, I'd like to note:
Summer Solstice was wonderful. I went camping with a whole bunch of heathens (that's Celtic/Germanic pagans) and my boyfriend, and it was a good time. There was some form of ritual/worship every day, there was singing (DP and I sang a couple songs ... note to self, find the lyrics to the entirety of 'Blue Boat Home' for next time), and there was general enjoyment of each other's company.
DP and I roasted marshmallows, which fed my soul, because the last time we camped (in March), I failed to remember marshmallows. (Note to self, look for gluten-free graham crackers for s'mores.)
I even wrote a tiny bit--I brought my little computer with me because it has about 7 hours' worth of battery, and I figured it would be useful if I found myself really wanting to write. And I did, a little bit.

Also, since we got back, Steven has given me how-tos for medieval-ish Celtic women's dress, and I'm pretty excited about it. At some point in time, I will go to a fabric store and get some fabric for it, and hopefully have most of an outfit by early August, which is the next Holy Day (Lughnasadh), and the next camping-with-heathens opportunity. (I'll need penannular brooches to hold the thing together, though ... hmmm .... must work on that ... on the other hand, my birthday's in July ... )

01 July 2010


It's July! I'll be 27 in a couple weeks ... Not sure how I feel about that yet. 26 didn't seem that much different from 25, which was firmly in the mid-twenties, but 27 seems a step over into the territory of the late twenties, which is dangerously close to 30.
And though I resist as much as possible the age prejudices that our society expects of us (I generally feel insulted when people ask me if I'm 18, because I really think I'm more mature than that; and I guess it has something to do with the fact that I'm not so good at telling people's ages from how they look, and thus I generally go by how they act, and I expect other people to operate the same, which I recognize is folly), I am still somewhat daunted by 30.
Thirty seems to be some kind of magical age for women; the age when everything starts to slip from you. If you're not married by thirty, you never will be. If you're still single at thirty, god forbid, the dating pool thins out drastically, so we hear, and your prospects for happiness drop sharply. And, the worst crime of all, if you haven't had a child by age thirty, people will come out of the woodworks to remind you that you are in serious danger of passing your prime, and even at 26, I've heard of all the "dangers" of trying to bear children after, say, 35.
And though I am not yet convinced that having children is what I need to do with my life, I am a woman and a Cancer, and thus have both my biological clock and the stars nudging at me to have children, in addition to my society telling me that that is my role in life. And while I am currently in a relationship, I am not married (and not even certain that's what I need to do with my life right now), and thus I approach my late twenties with some amount of trepidation.

Back to age prejudice for a moment, because I want to relate something that happened to me at work. It was sometime in June, and one of my coworkers asked if "ya'll" had had your graduation yet (and I'm not entirely sure where she's from, nor am I too familiar with the various dialects that use the word 'ya'll', so I can't be sure if this was a usage of singular or plural 2nd person pronoun). I still have friends in college, so if she had asked me that a month earlier, I might not have been so confused, because I would have been thinking about college graduations. As it was, I was very confused, and didn't say anything, merely gave her a puzzled look. She said, "Oh, are you a junior?" I continued to look at her puzzledly, still completely blank, I guess because I didn't understand why she was asking about graduation in June. She said, "High school?"
Finally, I got it. And felt insulted, that she could think I had anything in the world in common with 17-year-olds. No offense to the 17-year-olds of the world (my little sister recently joined their ranks), but the difference between a basically adult maturity level and attitude and that of a teenager is huge, and no matter how young someone looks, you really ought to go with how they act.
I said, "I'm twenty-six."
And she didn't really apologize, but she did exclaim, Well, gosh, you look so young!, and I tried to get her to see my point of view, and she agreed that I was more mature than a 17-year-old. And she told me that her son/daughter (I don't remember which) felt the same way I did, but then dismissed both of our points of view to tell me (like I'd never heard it before), Oh you'll be grateful when you're older.
I can look at it now and say, Well, maybe at her age the maturity difference between a teenager and someone in their mid-twenties isn't really that great; maybe she looks at me the same way I look at the teenager, both of us saying, Really? That's what you're worrying about? Just you wait ...
And though I feel like my worries about health and money and insurance and jobs and housing are basically adult worries, maybe there is some difference that I will only know on the other side of, say, age thirty.
But I still think it's rude to completely dismiss someone's point of view and say, Oh, you'll feel differently later, as though that invalidates what you're feeling now.

Anyway, writing group is meeting tonight, which means I still have a couple little things I need to finish, so off I go. Love you all! Wish me happy birthday in a couple weeks! (It's July 18)

19 June 2010

Changes are starting ...

Because, you know, it's impossible for me to wait once I've basically decided on a course of action. Which is ridiculous, because of how difficult it is for me to make decisions in the first place. Or maybe it makes sense: Oh! I just made a decision! Better act on it, quick, before I change my mind again!

The only thing that's bothering me is I don't see a way to simply "hide" certain posts, making them not visible to the public. If I don't want it up, I have to delete it. I guess.
I'll keep looking, because I don't want to entirely delete something I have written, but I may have to do something drastic, or at least time-consuming ...

Life is happening again, slowly. I did laundry today (I have at least three more loads to do--I wash all my clothes by hand, now--not counting towels and bedding and stuff) and I've gotten most of the way through updating my budgeting project (now all I have to do is go through the times when the money had to come out my checking account but was supposed to come out my savings account, so I can be sure my money's all where it's supposed to be). I did not clean the kitchen today, but my roommate promised to do dishes tonight, so I think I'll wait till morning to clean the kitchen, so there are fewer dirty dishes in my way, and I don't have to wash all the dishes just to get at my counter space.

I'm leaving very soon for my boyfriend's house, where we will eat dinner and watch a documentary that he got from Netflix ... we have to return it so we can get a new movie, but he's had it for over a month and is pretty sure that the only way he'll watch it is if I watch it with him ... *sigh*

Anyway, gotta go! Love you all!

16 June 2010

I'm thinking of making changes. To the blog.
This has somewhat to do with what was said at CONduit (the SciFi/Fantasy Convention I attended in May) about making sure you have a professional appearance online so that editors and agents can look at you and see what you're like, what you like, what the people who pay attention to you already are like--you know, because if I started selling books, I'm sure you would all buy them, right?
And I used to think that sort of thing was utter bullshit--like most of my generation, I believe--that it violated my right as a human being (or I guess as an American, but what, really, is the difference? say the Americans) to express myself, to say whatever I want.
Fair enough, but as the saying goes, you have the right to express yourself however you like, and I have the right to respond however I like (so long as we're not arresting you simply for speaking your mind).
I think we all like the idea of "anonymously" sending our shit out to the universe, but I think we all know it doesn't happen that way. And I find I don't feel the need to share my troubles with the entire internet. In my non-digital life, I'm seriously discreet about what I tell to whom, and maybe that's what I like about the send-out call to the internet: I write about how awful my day was, or how I was treated poorly, or something, and I can't control who sees it, and it's kind of an exercise in being more open with myself, but it's not really, because I'm still hiding behind a (false) layer of anonymity. I don't have to see the faces of anyone reading this.

The first option is to censor this blog, to go through and find the posts that I don't need random strangers seeing, and hiding them or deleting them or whatever, and then changing the look of it, getting rid of some of the quotes around it, and even changing the name of it and ideally the URL, over the course of a couple months, I guess. Maybe a little longer.
The second option is to continue this blog as is, but to make it private, to make it so only people I know can see it. I believe this is possible, but I haven't looked into it yet to find out. Then, I would make a new blog (that hopefully my friends would all still follow) that is more of a public blog.

Both options have merit, I believe.
So, I'm going to think about it for a time, and if you, my delightful readers, have an opinion, please share it. Right at this moment, I believe I am leaning toward the first option.

On a less existential sort of blogging-about-blogging note, life has been busy and full lately. Facebook knows a little more of what I've been doing, because it's simply less intimidating to tell Facebook about things ... which is another reason I've been thinking about changing the blog, because it's intimidating me, and I haven't been updating. Clearly time for a change.
In brief: I visited my aunt and uncle in Flagstaff with my boyfriend, I began the process for getting a tattoo (more on that later), I went to CONduit (which was an experience made entirely of awesome), I began some other processes that will hopefully lead me to getting work or a job that I will actually enjoy (more on that maybe), and I and my choir went to New York to sing in Carnegie Hall. I got back from that last one very late Tuesday.
In future news, I'm going camping with some Pagans soon, I'm going on a writer's retreat in August, and my boyfriend and I have talked about juggling conventions in Portland and Seattle in September-ish (he juggles).

Love you all, chat with you later.

23 March 2010

Oh my.

DP suggested it would be a quarter-year since I had last blogged if I waited till April to do it again (it's been nearly a month since I last wrote in my paper journal), so I thought I would say something here.
I am in Flagstaff with DP, visiting my aunt and uncle. He and I went to the Grand Canyon on Monday. We spent some time with Ann and Bill Sunday and today. We are leaving bright and early tomorrow morning (we hope) and arriving back in Salt Lake City on Thursday.

However, since we're getting up early tomorrow, this will just be a real quick note. Love you all, hopefully I'll write more frequently than this in future.

02 January 2010


After two days of doing what I could to not leave a footprint visible--no trail, stepping on sidewalk where I could, or the softest, slushiest snow when sidewalk wasn't available because it would melt the fastest, or the hardest, most packed-in snow because it wouldn't leave as clear an impression, and trying not to walk on dry patches of sidewalk, because that would leave wet footprints--having some sense of being tracked, or trackable, and making up stories about urban trackers--after two days of this, walking home just now, I walked in the snow without care, and watched the ground, looking for my footprints, and even stepped in clean, clear snow deliberately for an impression, so I could see what my tracks looked like. And I was pleased when I did find the tracks I had made earlier that day, pleased to know--that I had made some change in the world? That I was not completely untraceable? Not sure, but something like that.

I've had a couple of wonderful days, starting with seeing the movie Avatar on Wednesday night because choir didn't meet this week, continuing through to a really good New Year's party with the writing group Callihoo, and ... I don't know when it ends. Maybe when I have to go back to work tomorrow.
Avatar is an excellent movie, I really recommend it.
The New Year's party was lots of fun; we played writing games, and wrote some awesome, though insane, stories. (Write two sentences, fold the paper over so only one is showing, pass it. You will be passed a piece of paper folded over so only one sentence shows. Write two more sentences, and fold it over so only one is showing. Pass it. Continue until you reach the bottom of the page.) We had enough people that we ended up reading a story that we did not contribute to at all. That was really cool.
Yesterday, I spent almost the entire day with a boy I have been seeing. I accomplished laundry while he went out to get caffeine and some journal-time, and then we made dinner. I may see him later today.

Life is good; I am happy.