07 January 2013
While polishing off a fifth donut, Evil Me declares loudly that I will have to work too hard and will probably qualify for AARP before I graduate. The other Inner Me, Saintly Me, wants to put Evil Me in her place after giving Evil Me a black eye and waiving a diploma in her donut stuffing face. It's a rousing fight in my head that would make even Chuck Palahniuk proud.
Saintly Me and Evil Me go rounds every first day back to school. Saintly Me always wins.
Today, I decided I would attempt a go at writing every day. I do have an online class so Im already plunked down in front of the computer, why not?
In this winter break, I read a lot of books. One of which has inspired me to ease into my daily blogging with one sucky thing and one good thing for the day. It's called Stink and Sweet.
Stink and Sweet Monday Edition:
Technically, the day isn't over but I'll be arranging my erasers by color and labeling my PeeChees tonight so I may not have the time.
STINK: Getting to the bottom of my laundry pile and finding a long lost couch blanket and the Thanksgiving tablecloth. Let's do the math.....GROSS...
I do laundry every day and have managed to put off the last remnants of my laundry until I can have a full load. If this makes me cheap, whatever. Who on God's green, tree-hugging, earth runs half a load of wash? I think everyone has something at the bottom of the laundry hamper, be it lego, a silk shirt that you are too cheap to dry clean, or some errant sock or glove. Besides, my mom taught me not to waste energy by running a half load. Peace, love, and recycle....and put off Thanksgiving linens for a whole month.
Didn't think my Stink would be so literal, did you?
SWEET: The thrill of sleeping in AND then going to school to learn about computers makes me stupid happy.
School advisory advised me to take a computer class to avoid taking another year of math. I don't see how that computes but I won't complain. The funny part is this is an entry level computer class, as in, "I will wait to continue until the whole class is finished putting a shortcut on their desktop....everyone together..."
I build my own computers and have designed my own websites. I've blogged for over a decade. This will be fun.
-Bee thinks this is stinkin sweet.
Listening to: It's Time by Imagine Dragons
20 November 2012
I am a product of an idealistic mom and a carefree dad saying their “I do’s” in front of a preacher 9 months and one day prior to my birth. My entry in this world was scheduled. I like being organized. September baby. On par for the course. Hi, have you met me? I like organizing my organizing books.
27 June 2012
I won a book on Goodreads today. Yay!
The whole idea of free books for reviews is like becoming a dessert taste-tester for The Cheesecake Barn but with less chocolate sauce and far less guilt.
Stretchy pants optional.
No, not pants optional. What kind of girl do you think I am?
Pants, as a rule, should never be optional. Stretchy pants are a different story. As a matter of fact, reading in stretchy pants is highly under-rated. Eating dessert, reading, and drinking coffee in stretchy pants, even more so. Ask anyone who has ever eaten dessert after a Thanksgiving dinner.
"Keep eating. It's tradition...and ignore your Uncle unbuttoning his trousers."
Stretchy pants give you freedom to move, to be active, to go rollerblading with your chocolate lab. Stretchy pants not only allow as much freedom as a feminine hygiene product but stretchy pants uphold the golden rule.
"There is always room for pie."
No matter how short-short skirts are hemmed or how many skimpy fashions emerge, those trends of the publicly* pantsless, and I say this with confidence, is absolutely not happening. Sans Pantalones will never go mainstream. Especially when cafe sofa upholstery is involved.
First off? Eww.
Secondly, who says, "Hey, I'm going to get coffee. You wanna go with? Cool. Take off your pants."
Perhaps these words are only spoken in hushed, reverent tones by people who cant wear stretchy pants? It can happen. Those people are but stuck, and face it...butt stuck, in the traditional confines of waistband and buttons dreaming of stretchy pants.
Those poor souls follow the golden rule at Thanksgiving and as a result, realize too late that their ability to sit upright is futile. The Waistband People then learn a fatalistic lesson of Supply-Side Economical Effect of Free Price Mechanism meet Laws of Gravity (You Are Now My B##ch Edition).
Traditionally what we call "I can't believe I ate that whole pie. Where are my stretchy pants?"
Just kidding! I know. Eating a whole pie...that'd be silly. Silly as waxing near mind-grindingly poetic about coffee shops with or without half-nekkid patrons, sipping scalding hot beverages while lounging in chairs that probably need to be dry cleaned more often than twice a year.
Who knew a free book would inspire this nonsense? But yes, Mr Savage. (I call him Fred. Or that kid who was sick in Princess Bride)...yes, I have on stretchy pants and it is a kissing book.
~Bee supports The Golden Rule.
Slip by Deadmau5
*or if it may interest you wordsmithies, the dictionary advises the lesser-known alternative, yet equally acceptable spelling of "publically" which looks too much like "pubically" and that's just wrong.
04 June 2012
Okay, done now.
If I hadn't downloaded the app, I wouldn't have found free classic books online.
If I hadn't found free books online, I wouldn't have started reading again.
If I hadn't started reading again, I wouldn't have used Goodreads.com and connected with friends. These friends who used to work at a bookstore. Friends who said, "If you like historical fiction, you will probably like Outlander by Diana Gabaldon. A lot of women like that book" At this point I didn't know whether to be insulted or thankful he'd recommend something I would dive into. I went with thankful.
I read all kinds of books now with few exceptions because of my mother. I will say on her behalf, she does not remember it this way. Why? Because it is a universal truth that no family member should agree on past events. No one remembers what happened growing up. It's Murphy's Law, senility, or perhaps the need to be contrary. My sisters and I don't even agree and we haven't the age excuse on our side. (Sorry, Mom. No, you are not old). Its some generational, space time continuum thing. In fact, my kids are probably making fake memories as I type this on my keyboard.
In my humble and faulty recollection, which is very, very humbly recollected, my parents homeschooled me. This is not in dispute. However, the parental units allegedly had me write book reports on classics like the autobiography of Rush Limbaugh while I begged off to write something meaty and homeschooler-ish by CS Lewis or Oregon pioneer, Dr. John McLoughlin. Or dissect quantum mechanics departing from classical mechanics, primarily at the quantum real of atomic and subatomic length scales.
I was homeschooled.
What does this have to do with the book, Outlander? I'm blaming my android phone and my mother, that's what. I'll get there, now hush or go make me a sandwich.
I vividly remember my mother, who continues to not remember, giving my teenage self a good deal of flack after seeing I checked out Jr. High romance books. Good girls don't read that stuff. Judy Blume, beyond Fudge and Tootsie? Not allowed. Nancy Drew was also deemed a tart and she was banned from the house as well. I mean look at these faces!
They may look like innocent teens who scribble "Mrs. Sweet Valley High Guy" on their sparkly unicorn trapper keepers. But we know better.
Tears, shame and guilt pierced my Double Loving heart and like the good girl I was, I snuffed my tears, put my shoulders back, chin high, and began smuggling young adult Sweet Valley High porn under my pillow on the downlow. Until my stash was discovered.
That was a dark day indeed, my friend.
Fast forward twenty-garblefarble years and am I grown up with four kids and a husband. I still get a little embarrassed admitting I like the romance genre. I didn't want to break down an buy a book cover, but I can definitely see the appeal now.
"What are you reading?"
"Uhhh, my quantum mechanics book? Don't look at me that way...HEY! I WAS HOMESCHOOLED YOU KNOW!"
I was told by a well-read friend I might branch into historical fiction since I liked Stephen Lawhead. This is the one that recommended the Outlander series. He didn't say it's about a strapping, 6ft 4 Highlander, a strong female protagonist, drama, time travel, love story, a rebellion, humor, and all wrapped in good writing.
I blushed, I hmmm-ed and hawwwed, but my head said HEY! ITS MY BOOK APP AND ILL READ ROMANCE IF I WANT TO!
I downloaded it for a free Nook deal where it sat on my puritanical phone for a year. Which, incidentally, is more salaciously thrilling than hiding Sweet Valley High and Nancy Drew porn under a pillow.
Hey! Someone tell Ned that Nancy-girl is a firecracker. Woo woo!
After getting a new phone, I redownloaded the book app and surprise. There was the book. Highly rated and staring at me. I started reading and I discovered where the romance novels were concerned, there were a lot of varients. Also, I'm a dirrrrty girl and I liked it. A lot.
Then call me a broadsided bibliophile, Batman... there were genres in romance, too.
I soooo need a bigger pillow.
I have to mention, the peeps who tell publishers to offer a free download are pretty smart because I've purchased all available in the series in hardback (that's how I roll). I don't think I would have been brave enough to branch out into this genre without having been given the book.
I fell in love with this story and even though my mother's consternation, which she does not remember, at my choices in books is a deep-seated voice, I have learned to be more open-minded. Not that I'm going Fifty Shades of Seriously? This Is A Best Seller? anytime soon.
All in all, I would have missed this amazing world Gabaldon had painted if I hadn't taken a risk to read out of my literary box. For that, I thank my mother who still swears I'm making this up, the inventor of the android cell phone, and the deliciously wicked pen of Diana Gabaldon.
~Bee does not put covers over her paperback books.
The Planets Bend Beneath Us by Snow Patrol
01 November 2011
I have fairly simple tastes: Black coffee, plain cake, plain vanilla ice cream, unsweetened tea. Don't get me wrong, I can pound back a bag of Reese's peanut butter cups like the best of them.
Not that I've ever tried.
The irony of a Krispy Kreme within five miles of my house is not lost on me. On the rare occasion I do eat there, and it is rare....I am drawn to the plain, non-glazed donuts. Mr Coffee, however, looks at me like I've grown a second head. The man has been blessed with some inhumanly sick (or enviable) ability to devour half a dozen double-frosted, sugar-bomb, raspberry-filled, double-chocolate something-or-others and not slip into a sugar coma.
I'm convinced Mr Coffee inherited my portion of the sweet tooth. Which, fortunately for him, he also got my portion of keeping it off the scale.
The hot, brilliant, gorgeous, sugar-eating jerk.
After consuming more than a teaspoon of sugar, I feel like my vital organs are shutting down and could indeed vibrate bubbles out of a concrete foundation. All this aversion to sugary sweetness has turned me into one of those label readers. Sodium content, high fructose corn syrup, and how many servings they sneak into a pint of Haagen Dazs. It's criminal that you can devour 220% of your daily fat intake in one of those little Tardis like "four serving but are really one serving" pints.
Who in their lactose-fueled mind can stop half way through one of those? The Biggest Loser, we are not.
At a young age, and by young, I mean on the way to the birth weight scale, society is indoctrinating and molding us into becoming label readers. Doctors, media, parents, school, government-subsidized farmers monetarily motivated by the US Department of Agriculture (Hey, who would have guessed the USDA paying off wheat farmers would encourage us to eat 6 to 9 servings of bread?!) If government tells us how to eat, it's only natural that movies and TV would follow. I remember those 1980s-era Skippy peanut butter commercials getting in on the action.
My mom still tells the story of one of my 1st, 2nd grade sister holding up a jar of peanut butter at the grocery regurgitating through a toothy grin her best Annette Funicello imitation, "Buy this, Linda! It has good nutrition!"
With my label reading and natural sugar avoidance, could someone please, then, explain to me why, oh why, my teeth are falling out? Do your teeth just start to revolt once you turn 18? Once you start paying your own bills? Or do they wait until you start getting crows feet and a mustache just to mix things up? And it's not just us girls.
Growing up, my parents had us in a routine of brushing before bed. Routine turned out to be more akin to sucking on minty thread and getting my toothbrush wet. It wasn't until I was 24 and knocked up with my first child that I began to have teeth issues. Forget the other dangers of unprotected sex. They never mention teeth with pregnancy. Not once. Nor do they explain when you are 10 years old that avoiding proper hygiene is akin to ping hammering your teeth once you turn 25.
Brushing away a year of bad habits the night before a dentist checkup doesn't count, either.
Fast forward to adulthood and compulsive flossing. I have flossing picks everywhere. I'm the OCD of the dental world. Little hand flossers packed in my purse, in the van, in a bag in front of my computer. My compulsion has paid off and my hygienist loves me. However, I still need root canal, crown, have a cracked filling, blah, blah, blah... Don't even get me started on my front teeth repair. It's a long story involving roller skates, a blanket, and ramming my 7 year-old face into a steel pole.
I have my own little Toothbrushers now. I've taken it upon myself to sporadically inspire household hygiene with the Billy Bob teeth angle. I sputter out through fake plastic, black, misaligned teeth in my best redneckerson, "SMOOCH! Youse want some teeth like me?! Don'cha ever brush...hey, give yer mama some sugar."
Armed with good dose of fear, my kids have good hygiene habits for life. And if all goes as planned, I'll also have label readers that would make even Linda cry into her USDA subsidized and recommended servings of protein-filled peanut butter.
~Bee may or may not be approved by the American Dental Association
Listening to: Smile Like You Mean It by The Killers
19 September 2011
Little bit of a lot to catch up on.
I went to a cemetery today. No, it's not my time yet and all the kids are accounted for. No, I do something far more relaxing. Less irreversibly dead. I take photos of headstone markers.
Now, I know what you are thinking, and unless you are dead from sheer boredom reading this post, you are alive and thinking....who DOES this for fun? Cemeteries are as fascinating as their living counterparts. I love to people watch. Read obits. Find out what someone did with their life. The cemetery just shows the end part. Beyond that, a peek into someone's life: how well the marker is kept, what is left by the living, who is buried nearby. These are little glimpses into someone's life, into a place that is quite private and family oriented.
In short, I'm a nosy girl and people watching is still a favorite hobby.
You'd be surprised how many love to do this. I volunteer for findagrave.com. As a curious soul, researching is brain food, piecing together family, and helping others is my altruistic bit of happiness. I get a sense of paying it forward by traipsing all over miles of grass and buried memories while getting a modicum of exercise beyond The Piece Of Machinery Built By Satan And Used As A Clothes Rack In Homes All Over The World (aka the treadmill). This is where the volunteers come in.
They say that Rome wasn't built in a day and dead Italians didn't have relatives with cameras.
I made that up.
One marker in particular surprised me. I promise I'm not making this up. Last name: Witchchurch. Big pentagram on the marker. I'm sure she had a big surprise after she died.
In more linear news, I had a birthday last week. thirty-garblewarbleydobble...well, it's painless. Still in my dirty thirties even though I use soap all the time. I remember being fresh out of high school and thinking that 30 was old. I certainly don't cater to that thought...pffft, I wish...30.... But admittedly, I have been under the impression for several years now, high schoolers are looking younger and younger.
Another something-something is my schooling. Big question mark. I won't get into the hairy ordeal here. Too many decisions and options. Closed doors, closed windows, and I basically need some air. Now your curious. It's a question mark for you, too. See how it feels? Not fun. I'm still making my goals a reality however, reality requires flexibility and timing is everything.
Are you confused? Join the club, I have t-shirts.
Titus is in middle school now. He's picked up the flute for band class. I'm housing one budding guitarist, and an additional five musicians here. Our apartment looks like a music store exploded inside.
Lastly, Mr Coffee and I went to the beach with the family for our 18th anniversary last month. We experienced traditional Washington coast weather: overcast, cool, and a peek of sun resulting in a bit of sunburn. It was an excellent adventure to christen our new-to-us van. Seaview, WA is a lovely place to visit. Bob's Cabin Restaurant and Lounge's shrimp platter was not.
That's all I'll say about that.
Well, now I've caught you up, dear reader. Next post will probably be more exciting. Or not. I just promise not to ignore you till Christmas.
~Bee has lots to blab about today.
Listening to: Say by John Mayer
24 June 2011
Nostalgia has a way of teaching: good, bad, and yes, sometimes ugly. Homeschooling taught me how to study independently; a skill that I've used throughout my life. Former jobs, former classmates, former activities...all of which were present to form, encourage, mold, and make what I am today.
High school taught me that I had a demented sense of humor and was far from the 'in' crowd. Social awkwardness and insecurities in the flesh. Friendships were far and few between, but nonetheless important and life-lasting.
As for the ugly? Do I need to explain I went to high school in the 80's? The era was chock full of fashion disasters and silly fads. Again, all of these things make me who I am today. Even my irrational fear of blue eyeshadow and painted on jeans.
And AquaNet with banana clips.
And carrying around that boom box. (thanking all that be for my iPod)
The biggest downside to nostalgia is believing that any of those days were better than today. I enjoy reminiscing like the next person. I have friends and relationships I've had for years, if not decades, I wouldn't trade for the world. They make my "now" better. I hope, in kind, I will do the same.
In a nutshell: Learn. Don't forget. Move on. Live in the now. Be the sum of your experiences and work at making your present, the very next best day.
~Bee is listening to Life Is Beautiful by Vega 4