seeksadventure: (Default)
Last night I ended up teaching a class about Twitter use with no more than five minutes notice. There's a local nonprofit computer group that meets each month, mostly seniors, and Jake usually teaches a short lesson on some sort of tech issue after their business meetings. This month, they requested a class on Twitter, but he doesn't use it. I freaking love Twitter, and that's how I ended up giving a lesson to a bunch of delightful, if super politically conservative, seniors using my 100% liberal twitter account. It was awesome.

The best part was bonding with them over pro wrestling. After we went through the technical part of setting up an account, fixing privacy settings, and starting to tweet, we talked about Twitter's appeal, and one of my examples was how it allowed me to connect with other people watching and loving the same thing I am. I used last weekend's Wrestlemania hashtag as an example, because locally, I don't know anyone who loves wrestling (and Jake and Nephew love to mock me about it), but I can watch live and interact with thousands of people all over the world. The class loved that concept in general (I also talked about how when I'm housebound due to illness, it helps stay connected, how news, local, national and international, breaks on Twitter before more traditional media, etc.), but all these little old ladies also started talking about their memories of watching wrestling as children, with their grandfathers and fathers, and how much they loved it. When I first mentioned pro wrestling as the example, Jake laughed. I don't think he expected it to go the way it did.

Basically, it was an awesome class, I loved it, and I can't wait to go back next month to teach one on Facebook.
seeksadventure: (Sons of Anarchy space not just air)
I have been trying to post more regularly, though it is hit or miss.

Last weekend, Jake came up to spend the weekend with me. It was the first time he's stayed in my new (but not actually new) place. Usually, if we spend the weekend together, it's down at his house, because Dad's down there and Jake's siblings and Oldest Nephew and our friends and often Kris and Neal are in town. Plus the Hawaiian restaurant we love (Island Style) is nearby. We've been hitting it up for great food, excellent company (the family that owns it has basically adopted us all, and they are delightful), and karaoke. Occasionally, I even sing, though mostly I just record and cheer on the others. (Oldest Nephew is freaking amazing. None of us had any idea he could sing like that.)

Anyway, Jake came up here. Sarah and I had a Skype session and writing time scheduled, as we almost always do on Saturdays, and while we worked, he organized my apartment for me. It was AWESOME. He sorted out the boxes, put away the ones I want to keep, took the rest out to be picked up, moved stuff around, set up my kitchen, including my new blender, repotted plants, but in new daylight LED bulbs where I read and write, helped me unload my car -- all in all, just made the apartment cozier. Plus awhile back, Kris picked up a bunch of art supplies and storage for me, and I finally sorted everything into the boxes and have all that set up. I still haven't purchased my living room seating, but the apartment is coming together nicely.

One of the things he did was move these two small bookcases I have. I was using one for my Get Rid Of Somehow Books. Now I'm starting to fill that one a second time, and the other one is being used as my To Read bookcase. I, uh, have more books to read than I thought. There was a point in time when I'd read every book I owned. Not anymore. I need to put some sort of limit on my book buying until I read some of them. At least the physical copies.

I'm up to more than 100 days of consecutive writing. I've also given up soda, and have replaced the fizzy drink with sparkling mineral water (sometimes mixed with flavored tea).

Apart from the organizing and writing, we had some good meals, bought a ton of groceries for me, and went to see Pacific Rim at my new favorite theater. (It has a bar! And red leather recliners! And is generally AWESOME.) I enjoyed the movie a lot, actually, though I would have rather it not been such a white guy movie. I wish some of the characters had been swapped out for men and women of color. It was a fun summer blockbuster full of explosions and pretty monsters and I absolutely loved both Idris Elba and Rinko Kikuchi. Charlie Hunnam was fun too, though he was fairly Jax-like to me in the role.

I have managed to do some reading lately, and I should do a post in the near future over books I've read and really enjoyed, because there have been quite a few.

Today I had a Skype session with Sarah, during which we finished our current edit of Woods. Now we each have a few more scenes to write, and I am still working on some of the description. It's almost ready to go out to first readers, though. Exciting. Tomorrow we're going to have another call. We may finish the outline for our next project then, so we can get started on writing something new soon. I then finished organizing art supplies, did some more sorting of books, and am sitting down to do more writing. I was going to cook a roast later, using a Kris recipe, but I'm still full from brunch (biscuits and gravy for the win!) and will probably just eat some fruit later. Tomorrow I'll make a roast, though. And some sort of chicken casserole thing.

This entry was originally posted at Dreamwidth.org with comment count unavailable comments. Read the original post there. Comment here or there using OpenID.
seeksadventure: (Sons of Anarchy space not just air)
I have been trying to post more regularly, though it is hit or miss.

Last weekend, Jake came up to spend the weekend with me. It was the first time he's stayed in my new (but not actually new) place. Usually, if we spend the weekend together, it's down at his house, because Dad's down there and Jake's siblings and Oldest Nephew and our friends and often Kris and Neal are in town. Plus the Hawaiian restaurant we love (Island Style) is nearby. We've been hitting it up for great food, excellent company (the family that owns it has basically adopted us all, and they are delightful), and karaoke. Occasionally, I even sing, though mostly I just record and cheer on the others. (Oldest Nephew is freaking amazing. None of us had any idea he could sing like that.)

Anyway, Jake came up here. Sarah and I had a Skype session and writing time scheduled, as we almost always do on Saturdays, and while we worked, he organized my apartment for me. It was AWESOME. He sorted out the boxes, put away the ones I want to keep, took the rest out to be picked up, moved stuff around, set up my kitchen, including my new blender, repotted plants, but in new daylight LED bulbs where I read and write, helped me unload my car -- all in all, just made the apartment cozier. Plus awhile back, Kris picked up a bunch of art supplies and storage for me, and I finally sorted everything into the boxes and have all that set up. I still haven't purchased my living room seating, but the apartment is coming together nicely.

One of the things he did was move these two small bookcases I have. I was using one for my Get Rid Of Somehow Books. Now I'm starting to fill that one a second time, and the other one is being used as my To Read bookcase. I, uh, have more books to read than I thought. There was a point in time when I'd read every book I owned. Not anymore. I need to put some sort of limit on my book buying until I read some of them. At least the physical copies.

I'm up to more than 100 days of consecutive writing. I've also given up soda, and have replaced the fizzy drink with sparkling mineral water (sometimes mixed with flavored tea).

Apart from the organizing and writing, we had some good meals, bought a ton of groceries for me, and went to see Pacific Rim at my new favorite theater. (It has a bar! And red leather recliners! And is generally AWESOME.) I enjoyed the movie a lot, actually, though I would have rather it not been such a white guy movie. I wish some of the characters had been swapped out for men and women of color. It was a fun summer blockbuster full of explosions and pretty monsters and I absolutely loved both Idris Elba and Rinko Kikuchi. Charlie Hunnam was fun too, though he was fairly Jax-like to me in the role.

I have managed to do some reading lately, and I should do a post in the near future over books I've read and really enjoyed, because there have been quite a few.

Today I had a Skype session with Sarah, during which we finished our current edit of Woods. Now we each have a few more scenes to write, and I am still working on some of the description. It's almost ready to go out to first readers, though. Exciting. Tomorrow we're going to have another call. We may finish the outline for our next project then, so we can get started on writing something new soon. I then finished organizing art supplies, did some more sorting of books, and am sitting down to do more writing. I was going to cook a roast later, using a Kris recipe, but I'm still full from brunch (biscuits and gravy for the win!) and will probably just eat some fruit later. Tomorrow I'll make a roast, though. And some sort of chicken casserole thing.
seeksadventure: (Sons of Anarchy great wide open)
So my younger sister and her husband had their social wedding last weekend (they actually got legally married last summer), and I will talk about this more later, when I have pictures, but it's been awhile since I posted (anything at all, dude) something hilarious(1) | heartbreakingly sweet(2) | adorable(3) | full of the need for adventure(4) about my parents, so I thought I would do so quickly.

In case you don't know, my mom is very sick, and has been since the early 2000s (well, her symptoms really started manifesting then). When she first started seeing a doctor, they gave her basically no time at all, and yet she's still here. It's been this horrible roller coaster combination of will she live/will she die and slowly watching her die and her wanting to die and her not wanting to die and her being hospitalized and watching her broken body and her going into the hospital right before graduation and right before the bar exam and my siblings and me breaking down at different times and making plans for after her death for over a decade now, and it is hard.

Back in 2005, Mom and Dad had their 50th wedding anniversary, and my siblings and I gave them a second wedding, because they really didn't have one when they actually got married. Mom was strong enough then to walk down the aisle and dance a little, but not a lot. She's gone very far downhill since, and when she leaves the house, has to go in a wheelchair. (She doesn't walk much around the house, either.)

That may be the last time I've seen them dance; they used to dance a lot. They were good. They used to dance around the kitchen together, and put on music and dance in the living room, and Dad used to play the guitar and sing to her, to us all. (He's lost the dexterity and feeling in his fingers to do that now. Mom has, too; she used to play bass, and was learning violin. No more, though.)

I didn't cry during the ceremony, but I got a little bright eyed during the first dance, because you guys, my brother in law just makes her so happy, and she's my beloved baby sister, the Sam to my Dean, and it took us so long to be friends, and I just want such wonderful things for her. So a little bright eyed, but no actual tears, and I'm beaming at them while they dance, even though I normally find the first dance incredibly boring.

Then they invite everyone to join them. My dad starts to push Mom's wheelchair onto the dance floor, and okay, it's getting a little hard to see now, something's in my eye, maybe I should own waterproof mascara after all (but I never need it). Then Mom stops him, and slowly, so achingly slowly, stands up, holding his hands once she gets herself upright, and they walk out onto the dance floor together, and I am done. I started crying so hard I was pretty sure I was going to lose a contact, even though I couldn't stop grinning too. And they didn't dance they way they used to, all slick fun dance steps, but they held each other and they turned, and I was crying even when I got asked to dance (Me: Make-up? Jake: Little smeared. Me: Oh god, and it took forever).

My parents got up and danced together at my sister's wedding, nearly fifty-seven years after they got married, and I got to see it.



(1) See, also, this conversation:

Dad: You should write a story about warewolfes (which is basically how he pronounces it) bears. Bears like warewolfes. And moose! Vampire moose.
Jake: Vampire moose? Do they gore you instead of bite you and then lick the blood from the wounds?
Dad: Yes. Write this story for kids. A bedtime story.
Jake: That kid will never sleep again.
Carla: And mom wonders why I love horror.

(2) See, also, excerpts from things Mom and Dad wrote about me for law school graduation:

Mom and Dad put together one of those family ads for graduates. I thought I'd share the pictures with you guys. And an excerpt from their blurbs.

Dad: Carla is constantly seeking. Even as a 2 year old it was always “Tell me more, Daddy, tell me more.” . . . She has made any dreams I might have had come true. I didn’t get much formal education. But Carla has done it for me. She is my adventure child.

(Dude, could my user name be any more appropriate? My heart just grew ten sizes today.)

Mom: I taught her that books were adventurous and fun even before she could walk (as soon as she could pull them off the shelf.) I read to her every night even after she could read them herself. Being able to read is the foundation for all other learning.

(3) See, also, this picture of my dad in a St. Pat's parade: Link to a picture where my dad has the best grin.

(4) See, also, that time Dad made me want to clutch my laptop to my chest, I needed to hear what he had to say so badly: "[W]e will take off in some direction and ride til sundown . . . just a ride with nowhere in particular in mind as a destination. Just a ride to burn up gas, see things and accomplish nothing but have fun."

This entry was originally posted at Dreamwidth.org with comment count unavailable comments. Read the original post there. Comment here or there using OpenID.
seeksadventure: (Blue Crush start again)
[livejournal.com profile] minnalavendar started a conversation about reading over in her journal, and I was so excited by it that I wanted to know about your reading habits, as well.

Here is my comment to her, copied and pasted:

Books a week? Probably ten or eleven. During the worst weeks, I read a book a day, and usually two or three. I used to read more, while I was at university and not working full time and writing full time, probably twenty or thirty books a week, on top of my schoolwork.

I love to read. The only thing I love more than reading is writing, and that includes sex, creating photo manipulations, being with my friends and family. I can't help it; all those things are wonderful, but reading and writing always top my list.

I learned to read around two, as well, and my first memories are of my mother reading to me, big, thick books that took a couple of nights to finish. By the time I made it to kindergarten, I'd finished all the reading lists for fourth and fifth grade. In high school, when I had to do book reports, I'd go back and reread things I'd read in elementary school.

I'll read anything once. I devour most fiction, in gulps. I still hate to be disturbed when I'm reading; there's a scene in A Little Princess that describes it well, that anger at being interrupted, all the fast thinking to keep from blowing up at someone.

I read while I do almost anything. If I sit down to watch television, I have a book in hand. I read while I eat. I read while I cook (which, ok, doesn't really mean much, because I don't cook much). I read first thing in the morning and last thing before bed. I read at work, on my breaks, if I show up early. I've stayed late (off the clock, but still in the store) to finish books. The one thing I get in trouble for is flipping through books while on the clock. I read at parties, I take books to movies to read before the lights dim, I've read in bars and at coffee houses and at restaurants. I've read at games, only putting the book down to go march. I need to read like I need to write, like I need to breathe.

I love to drive, too, but I am looking forward to not having a car while at law school, simply because I can read on the commute.

I'm all gushy about reading, enthralled with thinking about it now. I love books. This is why I got a job at a bookstore in the first place, because I love to read and I wanted to share that with other people, before I became smart and jaded about corporate bullshit and customer stupidity.

I truly don't understand people who don't enjoy reading. Jacob doesn't, not really, and I just don't get it. He reads more now, because of my influence, and it still blows my mind that he doesn't like it.

I read to relax, to calm down, to learn, to laugh, to cry, to feel at peace. People have comfort food; I have comfort books. I reread voraciously, as well, a hundred times, probably a thousand times on some of my favorites. I can't comprehend trading books in at a used bookstore, or not buying things you find at the library.


So how many books do you all read a week? A day? Why do you read? What do you read? Recommend some of your favorites to me.

And if any of you don't read, could you tell me why?

~~*

Gaming went well tonight, as it did last week. Well in the way that really means our GM is an evil bastard and he tortures me, offering a happy situation just long enough for me to be happy before it's all messed up. Not that I don't still love B--- as a GM, and that should say something, because it takes talent to do something horrible, and yet I still love you as a GM. Or as a writer. It's all similar, you know, cruelty to players or readers. It's all similar, in the creation process, too.

The writing is going better than I expected, too, but I'll talk more about that after I get through with today's writing. Because now that I've a little of the feedback I owe people, I can continue with my own project for awhile. Only two more days off on my vacation, and I dread going back, but at least it has been a wonderful week.
seeksadventure: (Blue Crush start again)
Jacob has become addicted to Angel the Series. This is both good and bad, as he will now stop and watch it whenever he sees it on television, which is good for me, because I get to see episodes I haven't seen, but bad because he expects me to explain them all to him when he doesn't understand, and unlike when we watched Buffy the Vampire Slayer, I don't know all of what happened in every season. So we both get confused.

However, this does mean that he won't have any room to complain when I buy seasons two, three, and five, so we know what's going on.

~~*
what's been in the mail and thank you notes )

~~*

Stressed now, over paying bills and Jake being out of work and hating my job so much. Don't even want to talk about it, or how in the world I'm going to find the money to send the Berkeley application and fee this week. University of Hawaii, Manoa contacted me and I'm going to email the woman back and ask for a fee waiver, and Harvard's out, I think. The more I read, the less I want to actually go there, even though it was an honor to be recruited. I need to decide on the last two schools, then, and get my act together.

~~*

Right before I fell asleep, I had a thought about the perfect end to the novel. At least, I hope it's the perfect end. It's writing easily, five hundred words in less than half an hour, it flowed so well. I need to get back to it, and I want to watch RotK:EE tonight and oh. So much to do and so little time to do it. So little money. Must stop talking now, until I'm in a better mood.
seeksadventure: (getting away with murder)
Twister still makes me happy, no matter how many times I see it. It gets my energy up and makes me fondly remember my own days of (stupidly) chasing storms with S---. I've been through more tornadoes than I can count, double and triple funnels, and crazy weather. Nothing like what the movie portrays, of course, because that's some crazy movie stuff.

But it still makes me giddy and excited and it's helping the writing, just a little.

I was able to talk to Sarah for a short while earlier and that was both fun and encouraging. We have secret(ish) plotty plans, and I hope they come to fruition within the next year. Go us, and Craig and Jake. Our plotting and planning rocks.

Sarah, you'll be pleased to know that the chocolate pie tasted fantastic. I really will have to make it for you at some later date. It was excellent, cool and refreshing and rich, and I'm very pleased with my first attempt at making my own crust.

Sometime this week I'm going to bake a cake, as well, and make chicken pot pie, and some special potatoes. And maybe chicken breast with mole sauce and who knows what else. I'm going to enjoy having free time.

Jake just told me: "Whenever you cook, you either make me sick or you make a pretty good product. It's either death on a plate or damn good."

I'm highly amused. And he's not wrong. Though, to be fair, the death on the plate comes when he asks me to make something and I tell him I don't know how to make it, but he keeps asking until I try. So I do warn him that I have no idea what I'm doing.

Sarah said she's going to teach me how to make flapjacks. Too cool.

Jake wants to make his special grilled chicken breast for Sarah and Craig and all sorts of things. He's a tiny bit frustrated that they will only feed my love of gaming, but he's laughing, too. We have such plans, and if even half of them work out, life will be so much fun.

I both want to talk about this until I get told to shut up and hold it close to my own thoughts. I'm such a dork.

Especially because one of the reasons I like Twister is because it's funny to see "Star" all upset and old and stuff. Hee.

Back to the writing grindstone. Nose to it and all.
seeksadventure: (carved in ice)
In [livejournal.com profile] linaelyn's journal itself, I found someone who could make me hungry with the descriptions of the food she's made, who makes homeschooling sound interesting and wonderful, who has at least one child who obsessively listens to Chumbawamba's "Tubthumping" which made me smile, who seems creative and friendly, a good parent, culturally aware, and a fantastic writer. I'm pleased that I had even this brief time to read about her life. It gave me hope, to see someone devoted to her family and yet still creative and involved with life and fandom and other adventures.

I'm not sure what I expected from the flist swap. It certainly wasn't to find someone with whom I had no friends or communities in common, but similar interests (and I don't actually mean livejournal interests), beliefs, and the same type of friends. I recognize the names of some of the people on her flist, and I not only wasn't lost, even in the fandom discussions, but I saw echoes of my own flist there, and topics I was interested in researching for myself. I found people to read and stories to write and beautiful icons and all sorts of treasures. I felt like a pirate, again, and an adventure seeker.

It was actually rather brilliant.

~~*

Has anyone seen Young Einstein? I'm talking to [livejournal.com profile] kphoebe and when I told Jake where she was from, that's the first thing he thought about, followed by apples, and then Point Break. ("I'm not going to paddle to New Zealand.")

~~*

What is the best thing in the world? Helping someone get unstuck on a story. Well, it may not be the very best, but it certainly feels like it right this second, and I know it's comparable to other best feelings, at the very least. This is why I love writing, because it's not just the act itself that is so enjoyable, but helping other writers, as well.

And I am INSPIRATIONAL! IN CAPS! Which made me grin and be giddy, just so you know, [livejournal.com profile] kphoebe.

~~*

Speaking about helping others, I'm not sure how many of you have [livejournal.com profile] yuki_onna on your flist. She's doing a sort of fundraiser for moving expenses, with a percentage donated to tsunami relief funds, and is selling a serial novel, A Novel In Pieces. I've personally only read one short story by her, but it was an interesting vampire story, and her writing style is intriguing and, I think, heavily influenced by classical writing (in a good way, I know it can be a kiss of death to use that "heavily influenced" line in a review), and if you're so inclined, I wanted to provide a link so you can help. I may do it, if I can piece together the money.

~~*

Isn't it great the things that remind people of you? Kelly made me giggle when she said she was reminded of me and my love of carnage when the instructor at her training thing said "blood spray" (and, all right, that's not an inconceivable way to remember me, considering I do like to write bloody horror).

And then [livejournal.com profile] lavenderjones made me happy and touched and teary when she said this:

A CHRISTMAS PICKLE!!! It was my first time seeing one, and my first time reading about one was recently in your story. I HAD to buy it! It is in a jar which is an ornament in itself, and then the pickle can sit in the jar, or on the tree alone. Every time I see it I'll be reminded of a woman with a talent for writing and the potential for greatness that most of us can only dream of.

*sniff*

~~*

Tonight MB, Blake, Jake, and I played pool and had dinner at the new El Torero's restaurant. Pool was fun, though we're all fairly horrid at the game. (Well, not horrid, but not pool sharks, definitely.) It was a nice, relaxing evening, and we all had a good time. I'm glad we're friends with MB and Blake, and glad that Jake and my friends finally get along. Maybe next time M'Lee will not have to work at an insane time (in fact, I think she's now been at work half an hour) and will be able to join us.

Bat, MB loves my scarf.

That reminds me, I still need to do a catch up post. Maybe tomorrow. I'm thinking about doing an information post, as well, and I know I should warn everyone that there will be many extra posts over the next week, as I try to write. My goal is 10,000 words a day, Sunday through Saturday, but I know that's ridiculous and will never happen. Still, no sense in not aiming high.

I also owe a number of people comments on stories, and fear not, that will come.

In fact, I need to go get to reading right now, before bed.
seeksadventure: (Blue Crush start again)
I really miss having a decent library available. When J lived in Union City, I'd walk over to the nearest library whenever I'd come visit him. It was nice, with gorgeous landscaped grounds, and had a ton of good books. I'd just sit and read and enjoy myself. I love the peace of some libraries, how welcoming they feel.

The Cape library is not like that. It's small and feels awkward; it's too noisy for its size, and there isn't any selection. We went by today, so J could look at the Sunday paper, but I only found an old magazine to read, nothing good. This disappointed me a lot.

After the unsuccessful trip to the library, we went and got drinks at Barnes & Noble. Yes, even on my day off, I can't stay away from it. The amount of time I spend there is truly obscene. We also cashed in the last of our credit at Babbages, and picked up some pirate game for the PS2, which looks like a lot of fun, and a Harry Potter game for the gamecube, as well as a new memory card for the gamecube, so I can resume playing Tak. Because it's fun to throw sheep, dude.

We've spent the rest of the day here, playing video games and watching tv. It's been nice and relaxing, but despite J's company, I've been feeling kind of lonely. I'm not sure what to blame it on, and I'm not sure how to fix it. I'll just let it pass, I guess.

I finished Path of Fate, which ended fantastically! Go, read! I've now started on my other new book from that shopping spree, Bite by Richard Laymon. I've never read any of his work before, and I'm not sure why, but I'm really enjoying this story. It's not a typically vampire tale, but it is intriguing, and while I'm able to put it down, I always look forward to picking it back up, so that's a good thing.

Our nice weather has passed, I guess. Today it's been chilly and rainy all day, and they are predicting snow in the near future. I hope they're wrong about it, as they have been a lot lately, but you never know. I just have to say I'd better not have any trouble getting to St. Louis on the 13th, and no trouble with the flight taking off on schedule. I am getting out of here for a week, and no damn snow is going to stop me!

I want to write. I just don't have any ideas for what I want to write. I mean, I want to write a nice fantasty series, but I just don't have any ideas for it. The things I most love to read right now, I have no idea how to write. I did get in half a page on what started as the Nano novel, and quickly fell from that lofty goal, but that I've still been tumbling around in my mind. In a bit, I should pull up DF and crank out at least a little more on it. I want to get it finished and sent away, because as much as I enjoy the story itself, I'm tired of having it hanging over my head, and I want to move on to other things. It finishes the series, anyway.

I want a grand adventure in my life. A huge, gigantic, epic, death around every corner adventure. I know I'll never get one, not one flooded with magic and animals and buried hope for humanity. Is it too much to ask to be able to write one, at least?
seeksadventure: (Blue Crush start again)
Happy New Year!

I hope everyone had a splendid evening.

We didn't do much. [livejournal.com profile] kinayla came by for a little bit, but she's sick and has to work tomorrow, so she didn't stay long. [livejournal.com profile] theinvader stopped in on his way to work. [livejournal.com profile] misteraloha and I watched movies all day, cleaned a little, and talked a lot. It was actually very lovely. We watched the ball drop, watched the Central Time Zone celebration, and drank sparkling grape juice, because we had no champagne. I work tonight, 1.30 to 10, but then I'm off Friday, so more cleaning will commence.

Thank you for your phone call, [livejournal.com profile] thestalkycop. I hope you got my text message; I know we were having trouble with it earlier.

Much love to all of you. My bed is calling me soon.

May 2004 be so much greater than 2003 ever was.

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