Friday, November 30, 2012

Last Day

It is the final day of November, and thus I have the need and obligation to look back at the month and review it, in blog terms.  For the first time, I actually have done a pretty good job of keeping up with the blog day to day, which is not exactly easy for someone like me.  I have the vexatious habit of committing to a thing, be it a project, a goal, or an outing, and then losing interest in it.  It has caused many a problem, and I am working on it!  This venture, I believe, can be counted as a success, seeing as out of 30 day, I only missed five days of posting.  Which means I come away with 25 posts out of 30.  That's an A. I'm so inspired by my (moderate) success that I am going to attempt to continue this streak into December.  Granted this is going to be tougher than originally planned as December is a very hectic month. But here I state most boldly that I am going to do my absolute best to post every day.  If I want to improve my writing skills, I have to write daily, even if it's just a laundry list of occurrences in my day or random babblings.  I have to fight through the lackadaisical and move towards the inspiring.  So keep an eye out.  I'll be writing.  

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Messy, Messy, Messy!

I live in an one bed one bath apartment, which is pretty big for the price I pay and the location it's in.  But even so, it's probably the smallest place I've ever lived, not counting dorm rooms.  So you would think that I, being a fully grown adult, on her own, paying her own way, could keep a 550 feet apartment relatively clean.   This has not proved to be the case.  For those who know me, that comes as no surprise.  But what does come as a surprise is how little I do about it!  Let me describe the state of my apartment to you.  There is a pile of clean clothes next to the patio door, waiting to get hung up in the closet.  There are clean clothes in the laundry basket that I have yet to fold and put away.  There are dirty clothes strewn about the front of my room, some I've worn this week and others pouring out of my suitcase from this past weekend which I have still not unpacked, though I need to pack it again for Friday.  The shoe rack on my closet door is half empty because my shoes are various places throughout the apartment.  The boxes from my Christmas decorations (that I put up TWO SUNDAYS AGO) are still in the living room, waiting to be put back in the closet.  My desk is full of various objects, including a fun size box of Honey Nut Cheerios and a bottle of mousse.  The only thing that is relatively cleaned off is my bed, and that's because I'm sitting on it, and will be going to sleep soon.  What I'm saying here is that I am a mess.  And instead of doing something about it, tonight I made blueberry muffins (which dishes got mostly cleaned, only because the sink was overflowing), and watched the first DVD of the fifth season of Bones.  I also hung a few more ornaments on my tree because it was looking a little bare.  But other than that, nada.  I didn't do the laundry I needed to, I didn't put boxes away, I didn't do squat.  Which means tomorrow I need to do it all.  Wish me luck!!

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Dinner with Friends: The Common Table

I had dinner tonight with one of my best friends.  We've known each other since freshman year of high school, and she has been with me through every step of everything, as have I for her. She was in town for some training with her job at their Dallas office, and so we went to dinner downtown to this place I found called The Common Table.  It's a small place, mostly a bar, but clean and homey.  It was pretty crowded for a Tuesday night, but because we got there around 6, we were seated right away.  Their menu is not huge, but everything on it looked and sounded so delicious, we had a hard time choosing!! What we didn't have a hard time choosing was the booze.  We were both struck right away by the novelty of the bar's Skittle Sangria, so we ordered a white pitcher.  It came in a very nice glass pitcher, filled with fresh berries and cherries and a ton of Skittles.  It was delicious and quite entertaining as we tried to fish Skittles out of our glasses (which were cute mismatched glasses from different beer and liquor companies).  We decided to forgo appetizers and just order dinner.  She got the calamari and a side of roasted garlic cheddar mashed potatoes, and I got the grilled cheese, which was actually shaved pork tenderloin with cheddar provolone and parmesan cheeses grilled on fresh sourdough, with a side of the garlic cheddar mash.  Our food was delicious.  I personally could have gone for a little more garlic in my potatoes (if the actual roasted cloves were in there, that would have been amazing), and although my sandwich came with marinara sauce on the side, I was kind of wanting a little more something ON the sandwich.  But unlike most sandwiches without condiments, it wasn't dry at all.  I was a big fan.  Our server, Richard, was very attentive without hovering, even refilling our sangria glasses for us.  They have a big patio out front, but it was too cold to sit out there tonight.  I imagine on a nice day, it would be a great place to hang out.  I totally will be going there again.  And I will totally be getting the sangria :-).

Monday, November 26, 2012


I am one of those people who can't speak more than one language.  But I have an uncanny ear for accents.  And my brain tends to think in languages.  That doesn't really make sense, does it?  Let me give you an example.  When I was in high school, I studied French.  I started in eighth grade and went until I graduated.  There were days that we got so into it, that afterwards, I'd walk around for a while, thinking in French.  I couldn't speak it, but I'd think in it.  Very strange.  I've also had episodes when I'd be hanging out with someone with some sort of accent, and I'd find myself speaking in their accent.  It happens a lot when I'm out in West Texas or hanging out with my family from there.  It also happens when I watch a lot of a certain kind of TV, like Doctor Who or Sherlock.  After a while, I find myself thinking and speaking with a British accent.  Sometimes it's terribly fun, and sometimes it's terribly annoying, and sometimes it's TERRIBLY embarrassing.  I've been called out more than once for having an accent that's not technically mine.  It's rather embarrassing and makes for lots of fun being made on my behalf.

I've always wanted to learn a language though, and I know bits and pieces of several languages.  French, Spanish, a little Italian and a bit of others.  My brain allows me to pick up bits and pieces, which is great for learning things like songs and stuff like that, but absolute crap for actually learning the languages.  Maybe someday I'll be able to learn a real language and speak it fluently.  Maybe if I find a man who speaks it :-)  

Friday, November 23, 2012

For the Love of a Child

I am a very blessed person in that I have a large family.  Not just my immediate family, which in of itself is quite big (I'm one of six) but my extended family as well.  My mom is one of nine and my dad is one of sixteen.  So, lots of people.  Which is awesome, because I totally feel at home in a crowd, and because there are so many of us, I am used to small fry running around.  As I mentioned before, I am especially close to my two cousins, who definitely qualify as small fry, being two and five.  I think as a woman in her late twenties, I feel the motherly urge more strongly than I did as a younger woman, but what I love about the love I share with my cousins and nephew and niece is that it's less of a motherly bond, though there is some semblance of that, especially with the boys, and more of a big sister best friend bond.  My cousin James, while a stinkpot and a brat at times, prays for me at every meal, even when I'm sitting at the table with him.  "God bless Ashley!" he says, and my heart just soars.  I asked him the other day who he wanted to sit by him in the car on the way to the farm, me or our other cousin who was traveling with us, and he said very solemnly, "I want to sit by you, because we're best friends, and best friends sit by each other."  My other cousin Jacob, his face lights up when he sees me, and he gets a huge grin and comes running up to me.  My niece always smiles a huge smile when she sees me and my nephew says my name as loud as he can.  "ASH!"

This all may sound like bragging or something akin to it, but it's not.  It is a realization that in order to keep this precious love, which is unlike any other love in the whole world, I have to keep in mind another little Child, one who loved just as much as these children do, and who grew up to keep that love intact enough to die a horrible death for us.  This love, this precious, holy love, is the love we should strive to keep in our hearts at all times.  Even when it is tested by the cruelest of trials and sorrows, we must remember the love of the Christ Child, the unconditional trust that makes a five year old pray for someone every day, three times a day, and makes joy run through a child so vibrantly it is impossible to hide it.  I wish to love as He did, as they do, and I look to them and to Him, especially during this time of the year, to show me exactly how.

Thursday, November 22, 2012


On this Thanksgiving day, I'd like to make a list of the things I am most grateful for.  So without further ado, I give you my Thankful list.

1.  I am grateful for the wondrous life my Lord God has bestowed upon me.  I don't nearly deserve all the magnificent things I have been given, and I am grateful that I have the gift of living as I do.

2.  I am grateful for my amazing immediate family.  Although we don't always see eye to eye, we are always supportive of the important things in each other's lives.  I see my siblings and my parents as some of the best friends a girl could ask for, and I thank the Lord each and every day that I belong to them and they to me.

3. I am grateful for the awesomeness that is my extended family, both on my mom's side and on my dad's side.  My Mouton  family shows me daily how living your dreams can be an amazing thing.  My Allison family shows me true love and devotion.  I am so blessed to be a part of two such amazing different families, both of which I truly love and appreciate.

4.    I am grateful for the amazing friendships I have made in this life, ones that date back to elementary days, all the way up to ones made quite recently.  I wouldn't be the person I am today without all of your love, support and friendship.  It makes me so happy to know that I have people who get me, even when I don't want to be gotten.

5.  I am grateful to be in a job that allows me the freedom to develop who I am professionally.  That's a tough thing to find, and I am so thankful for the opportunities I have to grow.

6.  I am grateful for my mind.  It functions, it's intelligent, and it keeps me going.  So many people don't have the advantage I have of a quick mind, and I would be remiss not to acknowledge it.

7.  I am grateful for my apartment. It may be small and in a crowded apartment complex, and have walls as thin as paper, but it's mine and I love it.

8.  I am grateful for my love of reading.  It is my devoted love, and I will never abandon it.

9.  I am grateful for music.  It feeds my soul in every situation and brings great joy, even in times of sorrow.

10. Last but not least, I am grateful for the losses and trials I have had in my life.  They have made me a better stronger person, which is I suppose why God gave them to me in the first place.  If God brings you to it, He'll bring you through it. 

Wednesday, November 21, 2012


My family is one of many traditions.  We have traditions for Christmas and for Halloween and for Easter and for the Fourth of July, and of course for Thanksgiving.  Every year, my family piles into cars and vans and drives the three and a half (closer to four for some people) up to Henryetta Oklahoma, not to be confused with Henrietta, Texas.  There my Nana's brother and his wife have an old ranch located in the middle of about five or six acres of land.  There's an old red barn, and a big white barn, and a rec hall, and a bunkhouse, and a trailer and a main house.  There's a lane and there's a hay pasture, and there are cows that stare at you while you walk past.  There are old wooden swings with rope handles worn with age, and a huge yard in which to play football, even if it is on a hill.  And there's love.  So much love.  It's apparent in the daytime, when there are kids of every age running around, playing with the wagon, playing in the cowshoot, driving the tractor around, taking the old white truck to one of the 'fishing' holes.  But it's even more apparent in the evenings, when everyone ends up in the rec hall, sitting around at one of the many long tables, eating dessert, or looking at magazines, or coloring, or playing Farkle.  The sound of pool balls clicking together echoes from the back, where there is usually a game or two going on.  Kids run in and out, either trying to take advantage of the pitch black by rounding up a game of flashlight tag (a mix of hide and go seek in the dark and tag), or flinching a cookie from the crowded dessert table.  Eventually my dad and my aunt get out their guitars and an impromptu carol singing erupts.  No matter what people are doing, they're singing. Coloring, playing farkle or pool, making out their Christmas list, doing homework for the more studious of the college/high school crowd, Christmas cheer comes pouring out.  And even though our time this year is being cut a little short due to a wedding, it's still one of my most favorite times of the year.

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

The Hook

When I was in school, we were always taught that a good story should have a hook, something that draws in the reader and makes them want to read more.  We were told that a reader will judge in the first paragraph or so whether or not they want to keep reading.  Our hooks were mostly mundane, typically fifth grade sort of stuff.  You know, 'It was a dark and stormy night...' that sort of thing.  As I have progressed as a writer (not a particularly talented one or anything, but anyways), I have found that a hook is really more of a way to keep yourself engaged as a writer and a reader.  It sparks your imagination and it brightens the path on which your literary journey will continue.  Sometimes it's at a brisk pace, sometimes it's a gentle trot, sometimes it's a deadening walk, and sometimes it's a maddening gallop.  You don't know where you'll end up, but you know it'll be something.

Some of my favorite books have mundane openings.  I favor books that really inform me about the every day lives of the characters with whom I am interacting.  Sure I want to hear about the big episodes in their lives, but mostly I want to live with them and get to know them on a day to day basis.  I find that's where you really learn about a character and learn to love them.   My favorite book, Little Women, begins like this:

"Christmas won't be Christmas without any presents," grumbled Jo, lying on the rug.  "It's so dreadful to be poor!"  sighed Meg, looking down at her old dress.  "I don't think it's fair for some girls to have plenty of pretty things, and other girls nothing at all," added little Amy, with an injured sniff.   "We've got Father and Mother, and each other," said Beth contentedly from her corner.

A simple introduction to four of the most famous sisters in literary history.  A brief look into their lives at a simple moment in time.  I think that's why I try to write like that.  Start the story in the middle of something.  It gives you a place to go forward from and a place to go back, which I think is also very important.  Sometimes, the simplest things are the best.

Monday, November 19, 2012


There was a book I loved when I was little called Help! I'm a Prisoner in the Library!  It's about these sisters, Mary Rose and Jo-Beth, who through a series of mishaps (their car runs out of gas and their dad goes to look for a gas station, Jo-Beth has to pee, etc.) get locked in an old library over night.  It's a mystery of whether or not the library is actually haunted or if there is some logical explanation.  It always made me antsy in a good sort of way, wondering what it would be like to be trapped somewhere as amazingly creepy as an old library.

Now of course, as an adult, I find so many problems with the story.  What about their dad?  Wouldn't he be freaking out when he got back to the car and his children were missing?  We can only assume their mom isn't in the picture, but if she was, don't you think she'd have done something to find out where they were?  But mainly my issue is this: WHY WOULDN'T YOU SIT DOWN AND START TO READ?!  If I were trapped in a library or a bookstore, I would a. turn on all the lights I could find because let's face it, I'm a big scaredy cat and bad guys can't get you in the light (or at least you can see them coming and be prepared for it) b. put on some music, because quiet is just sometimes TOO quiet, especially when reading and c.  I would find the comfiest spot in the place, choose a book and read.  I'd probably start with one I hadn't read before, something new, but then as the night went on and I got sleepier, I'd go for an old familiar favorite, like Little Women or Pride and Prejudice or Last of the Great Whangdoodles.  Nothing too sad or too scary  or different, just something to make me feel comfortable and relaxed until I drifted off to sleep.  Like a paper sleep aid, natural and good for you.  That's what I would do if I were trapped.  Then in the morning, the people who worked there would find me curled up with my beloved books, with a smile on my face.

Sunday, November 18, 2012

It's Being to Look a lot like Christmas

I know it's early, but I'm already sooooo ready for Christmas.  Traditionally, my family waits until Thanksgiving break to start listening to Christmas music and decorating for Christmas.  But I've decided that I am going to start decorating the weekend before Thanksgiving.  I don't spend Christmas at my apartment, so I like to have as much time celebrating the best season of the year in my house with my decorations.  It's my first time decorating my house all by myself.  I have to figure out where the tree goes, where the Nativity goes, where all the decorations go.  I'm kinda excited about it, but at the same time, I miss having someone else with me.  But I think it'll be awesome.  Once everything is up, I'll post some pictures.  Until then, keep a carol in your heart!

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Pay It Forward

She almost dropped the dish she was carrying. What did he mean “fired”? She looked around at the restaurant full of people and then back at her manager. “What do you mean I’m fired?” she asked, in a not-so-quiet voice. “You’re doing this now?” He gave her a look of what was that, pity? Mercy?  “I’m sorry Ash, it’s just not working out. We’re going to have to let you go.” Ashley slowly turned and placed the container of tortillas on a table, then turned and walked over to the servers’ stand. She stood at the POS for a moment then turned to face the manager. “So what now Tom?” she asked, “Would you like me to finish my shift or what? It’s your call here, you’re the manager.” “Ricky’s all ready to take over your tables, so if you would transfer them over to him, and clock out, we can continue this discussion in the office.”

Fifteen minutes later Ashley Morgan found herself standing outside on the streets of Austin, Texas, jobless for the first time in her 27 years. She stood there for a moment, looking up at the front of the restaurant she had helped open five years before. Then with a sigh, she started off down the street towards her Jeep Cherokee. As she juggled to unlock the door, her phone began to ring obnoxiously.  “Hi Mom!” she said with a fake smile plastered on her face. “Hi honey! I thought you were working; I was going to just leave a message! Is everything all right? You’re not hurt are you?”  “No, no, everything’s fine Mom! I was working tonight, but it was slow, so I got cut early. I actually just got out! What’s up?”  “Well Grandma’s going to be in town tomorrow and she wanted to have brunch with you and your sister. I told her I would give you a call and see what your plans are. I told her you might have to work, but I would check.”  “Actually my schedule is wide open tomorrow, but I don’t know what Alexa’s plans are. She might have something.”  “Oh apparently this is something that your grandmother and Alexa set up for tomorrow, so she will be attending.  Great! Then I will call your grandmother and tell her that you will be there too! You’re meeting at the Driskill at 10:30 sharp, and PLEASE remember to dress up. You know how she is.”  “I will, Mom, thanks.”  “Okay darling, then I will talk to you later! Have a lovely time. And tell that wonderful man I said hello, won’t you?” “Sure Mom, I’ll tell Jordan you said hello, and I will! Love you bye!” 

Hanging up the phone, Ashley slid into the front seat of her car and dropped her head on the steering wheel. “Brunch with Grandma? And Alexa planned it? And I got FIRED?! What is going on here?!” From the passenger seat her phone began to play “Time of Your Life.”  “Hi babe.”  She held the phone away from her ear as her best friend’s voice came booming out of the phone.  “Darling! What happened? I just got a call from Margie who was eating at your restaurant and SHE said that you got sacked by that creepy looking manager with the long face. What happened? Is this because you gave Neil and I free appetizers the last two times we were there? Because we can go back and pay!” “Did you rigged my phone so it automatically goes on speaker when you call?”  “Of course darling, I did the same thing to Neily’s. I don’t want my two favorite people to die because they’re driving and talking to me on the phone. But that’s beside the point, tell me what happened!”  Ashley rolled her eyes and smiled at her best friend Jordan’s exuberance of watching out for her and his boyfriend of three years safety.   “I don’t really know what happened  Jojo, one minute I was waiting tables and getting ready for a busy Saturday night, and the next I was fired by Tom.” “The creepy one with the long face, yeah?” “Yeah that’s him, creepy and long.”  “Did he give you a reason or anything? Or was it just ‘peace!’?”  “Well he SAID that it was because they were going in a different direction and it wasn’t working out with me anymore, but I think it was ACTUALLY because he came on to me in the freezer last week and I shut him down.”  “Wait, WHAT?!”  Ashley sighed “It’s a long story, but if you meet me at the loft, I’ll tell you the whole thing.” “Excellent, be there in ten with our favorite men!”
Ashley pulled into the garage of the downtown loft she shared with her sister, and smiled as Jordan waved at her from his car. She parked in her parking spot next to her sister’s shiny red Lexus convertible and got out, shuffling her bag, phone and apron. “Darling!” Jordon wrapped his arms around her and squeezed. He pulled back and eyed her critically. “You look like crap. Did you stop for a drink on your way home?”   “No Jordan, I did NOT stop for a drink on my way home. I got fired. That’s enough to make any girl look like crap, thank you very much.” She jerked away and stomped over to the elevator. Stooping to grab the paper sack by the back tire of his car, Jordan followed her. “Sorry darling, just usually when you go to work, you look precious, and well today…” “Yeah, yeah I know, I look like crap.” The elevator dinged, the doors opened, and they stepped inside. Pushing the floor button, Jordan turned and smiled at her. “That’s all right darling, I brought all we’ll need to make you feel much better.” Ashley laughed. “There better be more alcohol than a cat can shake a stick at in that bag mister.”  “Oh honey, don’t you worry your pretty little head about that! Take a look in here.” He pushed the open bag towards her. “Oooo  Jose, Johnny, and Jim! Looks like a great pick-me-up night to me!!”

Ashley bolted up in bed, knocking Jordan’s arm off her body. “Oh my god.” She scrambled for her phone. “Oh my god.”  Jordan groaned. “Girl it is the middle of the night, what are you ‘Oh my god’ing about?!” Ashley threw back the covers and jumped out of bed. “It is NOT the middle of the night mister, it’s ten o’clock in the morning and I have to look presentable and nice and be AT the Driskill for brunch in thirty minutes!” She whirled around then groaned as the hangover hit her. Jordan picked his head up from between the pillows. “What do you mean, you have to be at the Driskill in thirty minutes?” he asked. From the bathroom, Ashley called “Apparently I’m having brunch with Alex and our grandmother this morning at the Driskill!” Jordan began to laugh. “Oh honey, at least you’ll get good mimosas!”

Thirty-five minutes, Ashley screeched to a stop outside the Driskill hotel. Throwing her keys to the valet, she ran into the lobby, where her younger sister and her grandmother sat, looking prim and like they had waited for an hour rather than five, oops, six extra minutes. She smoothed down the skirt of her royal blues fifties style dress, walked over and kissed her grandmother on the cheek. “Good morning Grandma.” “How nice of you to grace us with your presence, Ashley. You couldn’t have ridden with your sister this morning? Then you could have not only saved gas, but more importantly have both been on time.” Behind her grandmother’s head, Alexa made a face. “I told you, Grandma, Ashley wasn’t ready when I left. But she’s here now, so why don’t we have a seat?” Mrs. Morgan sighed heavily. “I suppose we could.” She snapped her fingers and a tuxedoed matire d’ hurried over. “We are ready to be seated now Francoise. My granddaughter has finally arrived.”

“Bye Grandma! Thank you so much for brunch!” “Bye Grandma, thanks!” Ashley and Alexa waved as their grandmother’s town car pulled away. Alexa turned to Ashley. “Thanks for not ratting me out to Grandma about where I was last night. Jim had a late show and then I just stayed the night.” Ashley waved away the comment. “Not a problem. Thanks for not ratting me out about being hungover.” Alexa laughed. “I think she bought the food poisoning bit, don’t you?” Ashley laughed back. “As much as Grandma buys anything you throw at her, so yeah!” The valet drove up with Alexa’s car. “What’s your plan for the rest of the day, huh?” she asked as she rummaged in her purse for cash. “Oh I don’t know, maybe I’ll go over to Fado’s and get some real food. Would you like to join me?”  “Thanks, but I think I’m going to give Jim a call and see what he’s up to.” Ashley shook her head. “Is that man ever going to ask you to marry him?” Alexa smiled as she got into her car. “Who knows? But he’s worth the waiting!” She blew her sister a kiss and drove off.  The valet drove up with Ashley’s car and she tried to hand him a ten dollar bill as he held the door open for her. “Thanks miss. But for you, it’s on the house.” She looked at him confusedly. “On the house? What are you talking about?” He winked and shut the door. She rolled down her window and said “Why is it on the house?” He leaned down and whispered “Take it as a hint to pay it forward.” 


It's late, and I need to  post.  But I don't really have any ideas on what to post, and today's prompt is not sparking any sort of inspiration.  So I'm just going to write about RANDOM things that pop into my head.  Like the fact that I am sitting on a bed at my aunt and uncle's house, because I'm staying here for the weekend.  I love to come here and I hope they love to have me.  They live up on the north side of the Metroplex, out in the country ish.  I get to hang out with my cousins (two and five), one of whom calls me his best friend (that's the five year old, and lord I love him), and I get to hang out with my aunt and uncle who are pretty cool people by themselves!  Sometimes it's nice to be included in a family.  Even though I have a fantastic family, I dunno, sometimes I feel like I don't fit in with them.  But here I totally do. 

I'm already listening to Christmas music.  I know it isn't even Thanksgiving yet, but I just couldn't wait any longer.  I need the constant joy that is Christmas music.  As I type this, Josh Groban (or Jack Robbins as my cousin calls him) is singing 'It Came Upon a Midnight Clear' and it just makes me happy.

My cousins LOVE the Polar Express soundtrack, and for those of you who don't know, Josh Groban sings a song on that soundtrack called 'Believe'.  My five year old cousin loves that song and has on more than one occasion mentioned how awesome he thinks Josh Groban is.  My aunt was singing that song one day, and James stopped her and said, "That is NOT how Jack Robbins sings it."  My aunt was super confused and asked "You mean Josh Groban?"  James states very matter of a factly, "Yes, he sings it GOOD."  So he calls him Jack Robbins, which could be an issue when Josh becomes his cousin in law. 

Yes, you read that right.  I would love to marry Josh Groban.  He is handsome, he is funny, he is UBER talented, he's sweet, and he's a nerd.  What else could a girl ask for?  Now for your listening pleasure, I give you BELIEVE.

Thursday, November 15, 2012

A Month

I have a calendar in my bedroom at my apartment.  It's one of the 'a day' calendars, where you tear off the page every day.  Mine's a book of the day one.  I used to be pretty diligent about tearing off the pages, excited to see what the next book would be, and if it sparked my interest, I would save the page.  But now my calendar sits there, silently marking time.  The page remains, and though I've gone to tear it off a few times, thinking "This is silly, I have other things to remember him by" and "He wouldn't want me to mope about and be melancholy,"  something always stops me.  I don't know if it's sentimentality, or foolish folly, but I cannot bring myself to tear the pages off.  I know it's real.  Trust me, I know it's real.  I've talked to people I haven't talked to in years more often in the last month than I think we've ever talked.  But it's not really the same.  Nothing really ever is the same after something like this.  We just have to adapt to the change.  And I am, slowly.  But until I do for good, that calendar page will stay where it is, reminding me of the day that everything changed.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012


I love boots.  Like I could wear them every day and be a happy camper.  I have lots of boots already.  But what I don't have is a pair of tall lace up boots, or short lace up boots.  Here are a couple of pairs I would kill to have.

Steve Madden Troopa

Jeffrey Campbell Tamara

On The Road Lace-Up Boots

Balmain Adele Ranger Embossed Mid-Calf Boot

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Making A List

On the outside, I am not an organized person.  My apartment is usually in shambles with things just thrown around, even though I live by myself and should be old enough to pick up my things.  Things have a certain place, but my closet is not organized in any particular way, my desk and the kitchen table are really just holding places for stuff, and there's always something around I haven't been able to figure out where it goes.  The only things where you can tell that deep inside there is a bit of organization going on is in my 'library' and my DVD collection.  The books are sorted by genre (relatively speaking) and then by author, and my DVDs are sorted alphabetically, with movies first, then TV series, then sets and Christmas movies.  Another way my inner organizer comes out is by making lists.  I love lists.  They make me feel much more centered in what I need to do.  Plus it's extremely satisfying to cross something off the list.

Currently, I have several lists going.  One is a constant grocery list which is posted on my fridge where I write down whatever I may need WHEN I run out of it, so I don't forget.  One is a list of things I need for my apartment, which are actually more wants than needs at this point (five months in).  One is a list of things that have to be done over the course of the next week or so at work.  One is a list of questions I have for work stuff, and one is a daily written list of the things that need to be accomplished today.  But I'm about to start my favorite type of list.  The Christmas List.

The Christmas List (yes it does get capitalized, it's that important) is not a list of things I want for Christmas, no, that gets spread out throughout the year.  This list is a list of things I need to do for Christmas.  Presents that need to be bought, what they are, who they're for, presents that need to be made for people, what they are, who they're for and the supplies that need to be purchased in order for this to happen.  Not to mention the baking and decorating that needs to occur.   This year I'm a little behind but I think I can make it all happen!  What do you do to stay organized in your life, especially during the busy holiday season?

Monday, November 12, 2012

Catch Up Time

I did not do a very good job blogging this weekend.  And really I have no excuse except I didn't feel motivated to write. Or clean, or bake, or plan or anything.  It was an extremely lazy weekend.  I was watching my friend's 5-month old golden retriever puppy, and it was great.  It was so nice to have another presence in my apartment.  And goodness me, he is a precious puppy.  A puppy definitely, but a pretty good pup!  We went for walks and to the dog park, where we met my friends and their dogs.  It was really nice, Brisbane just ran around playing with all the other dogs and my friends and I just sat and chatted.  I felt a little like a mother, keeping an eye out for him at all times, but it was fun.  Then we went to dinner (at a dog friendly place of course) and while the other two dogs kept jumping up and whining and begging, Bris just laid down and relaxed. Sure he sniffed around the other people and looked up every once in a while to make sure I was still there, but he never barked, he never whined, he never begged.  Then yesterday, we spent the day (which was rainy and chilly, perfect day) on the couch, watching TV shows and sleeping.  It made me very much want a dog, and yet I realized several things.  One, I cannot have a dog in my current apartment.  There is not nearly enough grassy areas around it for any size dog to be in, even a small one.  Plus it would have to be a 20 lb dog or under, and I want a big dog.  Well not a huge dog, but not a little dog either.  Two,  I am not as disinterested of little dogs as I originally thought.  Some of them are super cute!  And three, there are people in the world who treat their dogs (seriously) as children and spoil them freaking rotten.  It's a little disturbing.  But man that constant being there, I love it.  I miss having that.

Thursday, November 8, 2012

All the World's a Stage, but All I Want is a Room Somewhere

I've always loved the theater.  Plays, both classical and modern, are some of the things that make my heart sing.  But musicals, MUSICALS are my true heart song.  My dream in the past was to be a Broadway star.  Standing on a stage, belting out a song in front of a theater full of people would be amazing.  But even in my wildest dreams, I could never see myself as a star.  But my real dream job would be to have my own little bookshop.  A little place filled with books and comfy places to read them.  Filled with natural light, it would be a fantastic place where people would come in and hang out for a while, just reading, and sharing thoughts.   Maybe we'd have a little place with pastries and coffee (or hot drinks for those of us who don't particularly like coffee).  It would be a place I completely feel at home.  Have you ever seen You've Got Mail?  You know Meg Ryan's little bookshop, Shop Around the Corner?  That's totally what I think about when I picture my perfect little shop.  Beautiful, simple, and lovely where everyone wants to come and buy books from me.  It would be perfect.

Wednesday, November 7, 2012


Compliments are tricky things.  I'm a huge fan of the random ones, the ones that surprise people, and make you just smile real big.  But I am not a fan of the follow up ones.  You know, the ones people give you in response to ones you've given.  They always seem so phony to me.  I'm also not a huge fan of the obligatory compliments.  These are the compliments you get when you do something or you on purpose look a certain way.   The compliments you get when you finish a show, the "Great show!"s or "That was wonderful!"s.  Some of them seem legitimate, but others, well you know they're just saying it to make you feel better or to fill the air.  And the worst part is the way you have to react to these compliments.  "Oh thank you so much! I'm so glad you enjoyed it.  Thank you so much for coming!" with the bright cheery totally fake smile, and the wish in your head that the person will stop talking to you so you can go run and finish up whatever you're working on, or finish the conversation you were having.  Those are the compliments I hate.  But I LOVE the random compliments.  And if I do say so myself, I rock at the random bathroom compliment.  These are my favorite kinds of compliments, because they usually take place in the bathroom at a bar or a restaurant.  On my birthday,  I was drunk and in a bathroom at a bar.  It was the weekend before Halloween, so tons of people were dressed up.  One girl had on a skirt, an apron, a string of pearls and the best red heels I have ever seen.  I asked her if she was a fifties housewife, and she was! She had thrown the costume together in minutes before leaving the house and I was the only one who had guessed what she was.  I complimented her on her shoes, and she walked out super happy.  Like I said, I'm the queen of the random compliment. 

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Nerd Girl

I have a confession to make here.  I am a nerd girl.  I didn't use to be.   I used to be a semi normal girl who just loved to read everything.  Then I started watching British TV, particularly Doctor Who, and now I am a nerd.  I love everything about it.  And you know how I know I'm a nerd?  For the past week or so, when I'm on Pinterest, I'm on the geek category!  I can't help it.  And the really funny thing is that I get the majority of the geeky jokes!  So I think I must have been a nerd all along, and it just took the Doctor to come along and make me realize it.  That's so nice of him :-)

Monday, November 5, 2012

Election Day

Election days.  They always make me feel very uncomfortable.  I know it's my civic duty to vote and make my voice heard in the country.  However, I have a very difficult time deciding between two people, neither of which I agree with on the hot button issues, such as abortion, education, economy, healthcare, basically everything.  Thus, because of this, I cannot bring myself to vote with a clear conscience.  I like both republicans and democrats, and I respect everyone's right to have an opinion.  Just as I hope everyone respects my right to not have an opinion.

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Songs of numbers

Man, this weekend has been long and tiring! I had my show for the choir I'm I'm in, which is about 30 minutes away from my house, but five minutes from my aunt's house.  So I packed up everything I  thought I would need for the weekend and went there for the weekend.  We had 'dress rehearsal' Friday night, and it was long, tiring, and hard. It started at 6:30, and I didn't get home until 10:30.  Standing under lights for that long made me exhausted.  Then Saturday, I made mini strawberry brownie cupcakes, and then we had our first show! I was in charge of concessions, so I had to be there about 45 minutes early to set everything up, so by the time everything was done, I had been there for another 4 very long hours.  However there were margaritas at the end of those four hours :-).   And the show went really well, which is awesome.  Even my lovely cynical sisters said it was awesome.  Then today we had our second show.  I wasn't there as long, but it still went really well, and we had pretty much a full house!  However, while we were cleaning up, I ripped my little black dress.  It made me really sad!!  But that was my weekend.  Now it is over and I can now sleeeeeeep forever :-).  How was your weekend?

Saturday, November 3, 2012


One of the things I love about Pinterest is the amount of awesome quotes on it.  There are SO many words on it and they're AMAZING.  Here are a couple of my favorites, and why I love them.

One only sees well with the heart.  The most important things are invisible to the eyes.
"One only sees well with the heart.  The most important things are invisible to the eyes."

Let's get this out of the way now.  I adore Le Petit Prince (or The Little Prince, for those who don't speak French).  It is one of my favorite books, and I read it at least once a year.  The stories in it are amazing and when I have children, we will read this book a lot. This quote is one of my favorites because it's so true.  The  most important things are intangible and invisible.  It's something we all need to keep in mind.

Martha Washington.

I love this quote.  I believe that it is so true.  You can be happy even when times are crappy.  Don't let the circumstances tell you how to feel.  It'll make life better if you look at things from a cheerful point of view.  Trust me, I've tried it both ways.

When you're strange

Slightly strange.  I love being slightly strange.  It makes life so much better and so much more interesting!


I personally don't do that sort of thing, but on principal, it's SO TRUE.  If they don't have books around their place and you do have books around your place, that is NOT going to be a good fit.  Also if they have books, check them out.  You can tell a lot about a person by the books they own, and how they're organized.  (PS sorry for the language :-) )

And finally:


BAM. Read it, learn it, love it. Drop mic, YOLO.

Friday, November 2, 2012

Luck o' the Irish

For years, I wanted to move to Paris.  I wanted to embrace the Parisian life, eat pastries and drink strong black coffee at a cafe, wearing a beret and thick black eyeliner, people watching. Or typing my novel on a typewriter in my little garret apartment, because obviously I wanted to live in the movie version of Paris.  But then I went to Ireland.  And I was greatly swayed by the beautiful scenery and the history and the amazingness that is Ireland.  But I still had a sneaking feeling I wanted to go to Paris.  But then, this summer I spent a week in Quebec, where they don't speak English as their main language.  No no, they speak French. I love French, I really do.  I studied it for five years, so you'd think that I had some sort of handle on the language.  Now this was in high school, so we're talking years ago here.  So when I went to Quebec, I thought I would be awesome.  No. I was not.  I spent a week trying desperately to understand basic conversation and contribute something that was not stupid. Yeah it did not work out very well.

Now I have never actually BEEN to Paris, so I may be swayed again, but at the moment, if I could live anywhere, I would move (in a flippin heartbeat) to Killarney, Ireland.  It's a small town outside Dublin in County Kerry.  And I adore it.  It was amazing, the best vacation I have ever taken.  And I have taken A LOT of vacations. The scenery was amazing, the weather was divine, and the people were wonderful, AND I could understand them! And I picked up the accent, which is one of the sexiest things in the whole wide world.  Don't let anyone else tell you it's not.  Now I want to go back and (legally) drink at the fantastic little pub that was by our hotel.  Or partake in a Dublin pub crawl, which I didn't do last time, because I was 18 and with my dad.  Or do the Ring of Kerry again.  Man oh man.  Ireland, I miss you, and I'll be back sometime! I promise!!

Thursday, November 1, 2012

The Blow

Sitting on my bed, eating leftover birthday cake, it hits me again with a vengeance that you're gone.   I don't cry at the drop of a hat anymore, and I can picture your face with a smile rather than a tear.  But sometimes, when I least expect it, something will happen to remind me that you're not here.  That your ring will never sound from my phone again, that I'll never get one of the hugs that proves you love me, even when you don't say it.  That I'll never run my fingers through your hair, or have you sigh with derision and resignation when I'm telling you something you know is right but you don't want to listen to.And it gets hard to breathe, like someone is holding my heart and I don't know if they'll let it go.

   I needed you the other day.  Someone I thought could potentially be somebody turned out to be a somebody for a friend of mine, and left me feeling alone and cold.  You always could make me feel loved and warm, even though you were hundreds of miles away.  You could pull me away from the doom and gloom and make me feel as though I was amazing and he was an idiot for even thinking about leaving me behind, even though you did a million times.  The difference is you never really left me behind.  You always came back.  And now you won't.  I'm not mad anymore.  It's been replaced with a constant grief.  Not overwhelming, but there nonetheless.  I ride out the waves, knowing that sometimes it's good, and sometimes it's bad, but it's always there.  And even though you're gone, you're still here, in the brightness of the moon, in the flash of car wheels, in the stupid songs I hear on the radio. I just wish you were really here.  Because I miss you so.