Wednesday, March 28, 2012

Never Fails

Instant happy.

Listening to: "Iris" by Goo Goo Dolls
Reading: Paradise Lost by John Milton

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Last Purchase

Sorry about the unexpected hiatus. Life and I have been somewhat at odds as of late.

I left you hanging on the letter L.

The last thing I bought was a wooden hair comb.

After two and a half years of drought, I finally got to go to a renaissance festival again. Sure, it wasn't my beloved Kansas City affair with its plot lines and its leafy trees, but I could tell as soon as I stepped out of the car in the parking lot that it would do nicely.

I was so relieved that it smelled right, sounded right, felt right. I spent the first 15 minutes just basking in the atmosphere.

I was delighted to find that Morgan's Mane had set up shop here, too. A comb was the one thing I had hoped to buy at the Festival, so to find the very shop I had grown accustomed to in my youth was a real treat. (Tartanic was another unexpected bit of home.) 

The clear stone and red feather were gifts. Annie, Shantel, and I were each given a stone by a benign sculptor because none of us had dowries. (True story.) We got the feathers from a wandmaker for being pretty. (Matt got a feather, too, for being handsome.)

I was extremely proud of myself for not making any insane impulse buys.

Listening to: Once Upon a Time
Reading: Paradise Lost by John Milton

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Kill the Beast: A Habit I Wish I Didn't Have

Have you ever noticed the scarring on my face and chest?

That started when I was about five or six, only it wasn't my face then. I didn't know this until years later, but I was exempt from the rule against wearing hats in elementary school. I was exempt because I would scratch at my head until it scabbed, and then I would pick at the scabs. There's actually a tiny bald spot on the crown of my head. I was allowed to wear a hat in an effort to prevent me from scratching.

In fourth grade, I picked at my chicken pox. (Those are the scars that dip in.)

In fifth grade, I picked at my forehead.

In seventh grade, I started getting acne, and it all just kind of went downhill from there.

Back when it first started, my parents took me to a dermatologist, which is also information I found out later. I remember wearing hats, and I remember taking long car rides to Salt Lake or somewhere and listening to Radio Disney on the way, but 5-year-old me did not store the information of why, if she ever knew it. The dermatologist said that it was probably neurosis. I don't know how far you can trust a psychological diagnosis made by a skin doctor, but it's true that the picking is worse when I'm stressed.

And now you know that I don't have a skin condition.

Listening to: "Mr. Sandman" by The Chordettes
Reading: Paradise Lost by John Milton

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Job (Not Job)

When I think about my future, I see myself pulling lasagna out of the oven as my husband gets home from work. He puts down his briefcase and his fedora as the kids shout and run up to hug him...

Apparently, I fantasize about being June Cleaver.

But, I'm also realistic enough to realize that I may not get to play the traditional female role, which, by the way, is a respectable, full-time job in its own right, despite social stigmata. In the event that this is not to be, I want to be an old-fashioned librarian.

It would be pure bliss to spend my days stamping books, alphabetizing things, and memorizing the Dewey decimal system (because, let's face it, no one else is going to).

Have I ever mentioned how much I enjoy alphabetizing? It is one of the most delightful pastimes in the world! Part of me doesn't mind that I haven't organized my new bookshelf yet because I get to keep savoring the anticipation.

Unfortunately for me, that's not what it means to be a librarian, anymore. Now, librarians are required to have degrees in computer science. They have to know how to build databases and troubleshoot internet problems for patrons. Thank you, but no. I'll pass.

I guess my soul was meant for a different age, even if my purpose lies in this one.

Listening to: That's Why Carbon Is a Tramp by Crash Course
Reading: The Song of Roland

Inspirational iPod Item

There is a lot of inspiring music in the world, but one of my very favorite songs is "Somebody" by Bonnie McKee. Yahoo! featured it in 2004, and it's been quietly humming away at the back of my heart ever since. When I really need it, it whistles a little louder and reminds me it's still there, right where it will always be.

Listen here: Somebody (Album Version

Listening to: "Somebody" by Bonnie McKee
Reading: The Song of Roland

Friday, March 9, 2012

Hearing the Happy

Or, "H Is for How Late This Is." Laura's been totally awesome at not missing days, but this is already my second time playing catch up, and we aren't even to the part of the alphabet you say really fast when you sing it.

Today's (first) post is about songs I listen to when I'm happy. When I'm really happy, that means dance music. Especially Latino dance music.

Shakira, Shakiraaaa!

My top five are:

1. "Suerte"/"Whenever, Wherever" by Shakira

2. "Alejandro" by Lady Gaga

3. "I Like It" by Enrique Iglesias

4. "DJ Got Us Fallin' In Love" by Usher ft. Pitbull

5. "Don't Stop Me Now" by Queen

*dance break*

Listening to: "Don't Stop Me Now" by Queen
Reading: The Song of Roland

Thursday, March 8, 2012

Good Grazing to Get Glad

When it comes to comfort food, Swedish Fish are, of course, my cure-all. The power of Swedish Fish lies in believing in the Swedish Fish.

However, I also have an interesting relationship with Pop-Tarts. I go through these phases where they're all I want to eat. When I went on the Spanish club trip to Europe in high school, I took three large boxes with me. That's 32 Pop-Tarts. I grossly overestimated how many toaster pastries it would take to sustain me in a foreign country for 10 days. I had been back home for a month before I polished them all off.

Listening to: This Means War
Reading: The Song of Roland

Wednesday, March 7, 2012

Five and Fifteen Favorites

Instead of a list of my 20 favorite things (because there is an awful lot to love in this life, and it's hard to choose), I have listed here my favorite things in 20 categories. Mostly I have tried to pick topics people don't hear me talk about very often, but there are certainly a few exceptions I just couldn't resist including.

1. Actor: Paul Bettany
2. Comedian: Brian Regan
3. Digital artist: Charlie Bowater
4. Disney princess: Belle
5. Food to make: deviled eggs
6. Fruit: mulberries
7. Grocery store: Safeway
8. Hogwarts House: Ravenclaw
9. Inclement weather: thunderstorm
10. Insect: firefly
11. Jelly Belly flavor: Tutti-Fruitti
12. Movie theater candy: Dots
13. Pixar movie: Ratatouille
14. Pizza: Domino's hand tossed crust with barbecue sauce, pineapple, and bacon
15. Scene from Fantasia: "The Pastoral Symphony"
16. Sea creature: stingray
17. Semi manufacturer: Kenworth
18. Shel Silverstein poem: "Invitation"
19. Superhero: Stupendous Man
20. Webcomic: Lackadaisy

Listening to: "Somebody" by Bonnie McKee
Reading: The Many Adventures of Winnie-the-Pooh by A.A. Milne

Earliest Effigy

My first memory is of sitting in the middle in the back of my family's orange Jeep as my dad backed into the driveway of our house in Clearfield, Utah. I was probably three.

That was the house with the willow tree that didn't get big until after we'd moved away. That was the house with the garden where Mom grew red currants for making into red currant syrup. currant syrup...

Listening to:
Reading: The Many Adventures of Winnie-the-Pooh by A.A. Milne

Sunday, March 4, 2012

Dreaming of Dates But Dead in the Doldrums

At this point, I may even go so far as to say I'm in the Bermuda Triangle, romantically.

If a ship were to rescue me, even just a friendly, disinterested one, I would want it to take me to the zoo. One cannot go to the zoo too much. It is an impossibility. There is no zoo quota.

You wanna know the best part about the zoo? They have animals. How can any two people be bored or uncomfortable when there are giraffes running about? They can't. That's how. There can be no end to conversation when there are goats to pet, statues to pose on, meerkats to ogle, and squirrels to feed.

Would you like to know a secret? The Phoenix Zoo has an area they call the Forest of Uco, and I think it is one of the most romantic places in the world. I know it's just false fronts and canned music, but I fantasize about walking hand in hand with some handsome, clever young man through that pretty little street. He'll stop me by the fountain and pull me into the cha-cha. We'll laugh as he guides me through the steps because my feet have never been good at remembering what they're supposed to be doing, and he knows it. And then we'll go see the Andean bears.

Because nothing says precious like this little guy:

Listening to: "Defying Gravity" by Kristin Chenoweth and Idina Menzel
Reading: The Subtle Knife by Philip Pullman

Crying and Canciones

Here's an interesting tidbit: I tend to tear up when I sing.

Maybe it's because I generally belt things like Disney love songs and Adele when I'm alone, or maybe my tear ducts are just utter lightweights. Whatever the reason, no matter how dry my eyes are while listening to the original, once I throw my full voice behind a song, there's a 95% chance that my eyes will start watering.

Hymns are an exception. My theory is that because I sing them so often, my tear ducts have a higher tolerance for hymns than for other songs. There is, however, a giant gaping hole in this logic: I'm more likely to cry while listening to a hymn.

The moral of the story is that I am easily moved to tears. In fact, I sometimes measure the quality of books and movies by their ability to make me cry. Exhibit A: Great Expectations. I bawled straight through the last five chapters. Fact.

As a parting side note, I may have almost hit that high C in "The Phantom of the Opera" today. Although, since I'm fairly positive I don't have perfect pitch, there's no way to really tell what that almost-note almost was.

Listening to: "Think of Me" from The Phantom of the Opera
Reading: The Subtle Knife by Philip Pullman

Friday, March 2, 2012

Before Besándome, Be Aware

I promise this challenge won't be entirely about dating. I make no such concessions for the Spanglish.

One of the possible prompts was to talk about my last kiss. How could I resist such an opportunity?

I remember it so well. Not a detail has been lost with time.

Of course, that could be because there are no details since I've never been kissed (or done the kissing), so there's absolutely nothing to forget.

When I was ten years old, I wrote and signed a pledge stating that I wouldn't kiss anyone until I was married to him, and I made my parents sign it as witnesses. Naturally, that's absolutely silly, and I'm not holding myself to that, but I am going to wait until there is someone very special in my life. Maybe not quite fiance status, but getting there.

I know myself. A kiss would hold too significance for me now. Besides, that's not really a behavior I want to get addicted to in my singleness, and something tells me that's entirely too easy to do.

Someday a little girl with my eyes will ask me about my first kiss. When that day comes, I hope I can point to the man across the room and say, "Well..."

Listening to: The Finder
Reading: The Subtle Knife by Philip Pullman

Attraction: All the Attributes I Ache for in Another Alma

And by "alma," I mean the Spanish word for "soul," not the Book of.

The appellation is appropriate, I think.

What attracts me to someone? I think that most people tend to answer this question with a list of physical attributes. I'm not going to deny that my knees get a little weak over a pair of beautiful eyes or handsome shoulders or well-toned elbows (Shantel informs me that this last one is weird), but what really draws me to someone isn't physical at all.

To me, the most attractive thing in the world is a gentle spirit. I wish I could define it better. It's something you sense about a person. Maybe it's something about the way he carries himself or something in the way he speaks. Maybe it's not that simple. All I know is that it's palpable. I may not know how I recognize it, but recognize it I do. It's a quality that makes me feel safe, that inspires me. Around someone like that, I want to be good and gentle and happy, too.

I'm also attracted to intelligence. Someday the man I marry and I are going to be that precious old couple still holding hands, and our conversation will be as engaging then as it will be in our youth. I cannot settle for less.

If such a man also happens to like Charles Dickens and guns and the Legend of Zelda, who am I to say nay?

Listening to: "Maybe" by Ingrid Michaelson
Reading: The Subtle Knife by Philip Pullman

Thursday, March 1, 2012


Pretend that this is dated February 29th.

Before I get to the business at hand, I would just like to say that my favorite part of Mesa High's production of Beauty and the Beast was the guy dressed as a whisk.

Moving on.

Laura and I decided that it was time for another blog challenge. This time, we made our own rules. We will be posting daily for 26 days. Every day, we will each pull our own prompt from a pool we have. The catch is that each day's prompt has to correspond to a succeeding letter of the alphabet, which will require some creative rewriting on our part.

We will not be repeating anything covered in the last challenge we did, so if you're interested in seeing what sort of zany things I revealed about myself last year, right this way.

Let the games begin.

Listening to: "How To Tame Lions" by Washington
Reading: The Subtle Knife by Philip Pullman