Wednesday, January 31, 2007

Adjusting to full-time work is difficult. I come home each night exhausted and don't accomplish anything aside from laying around and watching t.v. I also go to bed at around 9:30, wake up at 7:30 and am still tired. What gives?

It's not that the work is hard, it's that I am there all day long and I have to practically hike to get there and back. Add in the bus time, and we are talking a considerable amount of exertion each day. Hopefully I will get used to it soon.

I have big news, like BIG NEWS. Boyfriend and I may be going to Indonesia for two and a half months. It is not totally definite yet, but it almost is. It is highly likely. We will stay with his parents while there. I was a little worried about asking them if I could come too, but today they told Boyfriend that I am "most welcome." I will keep you updated!!

Other than that, I just got Job #3 as a childcare worker at a Methodist church on Sunday mornings and some evenings. I told them a little about my family and that was enough experience for them. And I'm not even drinking caffeinated coffee anymore.

I am pretty jazzed because Estella's Revenge will now be focusing solely on books. Plus Bro is going to be writing a comics column. Woohoo.

Monday, January 29, 2007


Today was my first day back at work. It was nice. My souvenir gifts were well-liked and someone left a Christmas gift for me on my desk (a box of chocolates). Boss asked about my vacation and told me about his. He also started me on working on something new. Now that I'm full-time, the book work will not be enough to fill 40 hours each week, but there is plenty to do.

He knows that I am taking my courses online and asked how many credits I'm currently taking. I told him "16" and he said, "And working full-time? What are you, a mutant?" I think it was a compliment.

Then we had this philosophical conversation. Boss is pretty cool in that he is really interested in people. Not just in how they perform for the company - of course he cares about that too - but in general. I remember he asked me during my interview, "What is the hardest thing you've ever gone through?" and I found myself telling him about my father because he was so... I don't know... interested. It wasn't superficial.

So anyway, he walks over to my desk and asks me these questions:

"What are you going to get your Master's in?"
"What do you want to do with your life?"
"It's your 80th birthday party and everyone's there. What are they saying?"

Not in rapid succession, but we had a conversation about it. Really made me think. I told him that I would want them to say that they had gained some insights from my writing. He was like, "Insight into what?" and I said, "Life."

Sunday, January 28, 2007

Today is my last day before going back to the office. I got some super cool souvenir-y mugs for my boss and a coworker/friend. I hope they like them. I know the friend will - he's into that stuff - so I'm just hoping for the boss.

I had lunch with Artsy Friend at an Indian restaurant yesterday. (She's the one who made me the scarf for Christmas.) It was nice to catch up, see her new tattoo (WOW! it's her whole damn arm!) and talk about writing (we're both writers). We are going to hang out on Superbowl Sunday since my apartment is going to be filled with testosterone.

Thursday, January 25, 2007

Boyfriend and I have been eating healthy since returning. Our house has nothing bad in it whatsoever and it has been going really well. The sweetest thing I've had in the last couple of days has been a little Nutella and peanut butter on banana slices. (C'mon, that's an accomplishment ... this is me!!)

I have been forcing Boyfriend to watch American Idol. Crazy, right? I'm not one of those people who watches it consistently throughout the season but you can hardly avert your eyes from the train wreck that is preliminary auditions. ('Bush baby' was going too far, Simon Cowell, too far.)

F Minus

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

I think I'm going to switch back to writing normally (capitalization). No caps was a phase, fun while it lasted.


I'm back in Texas, the state where everything is bigger, or some shit like that. When I got off the plane yesterday and walked through the airport, looking at all the Longhorns logos and Lone Stars and barbecue stands and listening to country music play, I breathed a deep sigh of relief. It feels very good to be back in a place that is so fun and peaceful for me.

I do miss the girls, though. Pretty badly. Worse than the last time I came here. I practically raised them and I treat them as if they were my own daughters. I can't help it. Kid Sister #2 refused to talk to me on the phone again last night; I don't know if she's angry with me for leaving or just anti-phone.

Monday, January 22, 2007

i am not one for fast food. before now, i hadn't eaten it in years. since i've been home, however, i have succumbed to going out for it with friends and family who eat it. it's fast, it's cheap, it's easy ... what's the big deal? but after breakfast at burger king with sister this morning, i swear to never eat fast food again. i don't think your heart is supposed to hurt after a meal.

yesterday i got a call from a friend from venice. it was a big surprise and i was so excited to hear from him. i went to his place to see him last night. he's staying with his mother, which is not a bad deal considering his parents are rich art collectors or something. he lives in an amazing place with original harings and such on the walls. he showed me his johns. he owns it because jasper johns traced his shadow when he was five years old and used it in a piece!! anyway, my old boss showed up as well and we three had chinese takeout and white wine. it was great.

Sunday, January 21, 2007

the countdown goes on. two days left in the northeast. i haven't begun packing so i must today. i am also planning to take kid sisters to a museum and spend some hours with my father. his birthday is on saturday so i need to bring him some cake and make up for not being here then.

i am seriously excited about going back but that excitement is tempered by leaving my little sisters. they are not happy about it. boyfriend and i are trying to work out some way to take them for the summer, or at least part of it. i think that would be fun and they were duly excited when i pitched it to them :) my mother is fine with it, the logistics just need to be worked out.

oh, and i would be remiss if i didn't mention hillary's run for the presidency. oh yessssssss.

Friday, January 19, 2007

enjoying the last moments of having the computer to myself before sister gets home from her week-long trip to atlanta. stole this from andi. i steal a lot from her as she is one of my idols.

Three screen names that you’ve had: xLoOkInUpx, pecas377, BEATLEMANIA4EVA

Three things you like about yourself: my sense of humor, my ability to express myself and my freckles (what can i say? they grew on me.)

Three things you don’t like about yourself: my pudge, my lack of style and my introversion

Three parts of your heritage: italian, scotch-irish, russian jew

Three things that scare you: death, bugs, failure

Three of your everyday essentials: my glasses, my cell phone and a book

Three things you are wearing right now: blue plaid pajama pants, a t-shirt and my silver heart bracelet

Three of your favorite songs: "in my life" by the beatles, "for the widows in paradise" by sufjan stevens, "hey hey my my" by neil young

Three things you want in a relationship: sensitivity, patience, deep connection

Three things you can’t live without: my car, my boyfriend and coffee

Three places you want to go on vacation: india, britain (ireland and scotland mainly) and back to italia!

Three things you just can’t do: give up sweets, stop cursing while driving, function on less than 8 hours sleep

Three kids names: draupadi, amber, joshua

Three things you want to do before you die: publish a book, get married, have a baby

Three celeb crushes: christian bale, viggo mortensen (only in lotr, nowhere else, ick), the guy who played hector in troy

Three of your favorite musicians: the beatles, jars of clay, sufjan stevens

Three physical things about the opposite sex that appeal to you: facial hair, eyes, face

Three of your favorite hobbies: reading, writing, going to museums

Three things you really want to do badly right now: shut the t.v. that's blasting, sleep, go home and take kid sisters with me

Three careers you’re considering/you’ve considered: lawyer (age 13), pastor (age 16), writer (age 22)

Three ways that you are stereotypically a boy: i dress like one, i curse a lot, i make my significant other do the cooking

Three ways that you are stereotypically a girl: i cry all the time, i like jewelry, i use all kinds of crazy shower gels/bubble bath/lotions/crystals/ oils/perfumes/body sprays/etc.
another rejection email. i should start putting money on how many will come in each week. any bets? bah.

my finances have driven me back to the wonderful world of editing erotic fiction. i am doing okay but could use the extra pennies.

four more days and then i'm off. i am really looking forward to going "home." austin may not be home but it feels like it since boyfriend and i have settled there. i can't wait to get back to our apartment and relax. it will be difficult to leave my little sisters, though. that will be tough.

one of my reviewing gigs sent me "if you want to write" by brenda ueland and i am really enjoying it so far. i need to read up more on writing - the process, various exercises, etc. i should use some of the gift card credit to get books on it, as these are things that should be in my library for the future.

Thursday, January 18, 2007

i am very excited. the ladies over at the feminist pulse - one of my favorite blogs - are graciously allowing me to contribute over there. 3+ times a week my "girls-rock" speeches will appear on their blog. hope those of you who are interested in that stuff check it out! :)

Wednesday, January 17, 2007

i can't complain but sometimes i still do

sometimes life is just good. i have a belly full of indian food and i finally found out what my grades from last semester are: A in world lit, A in brit lit and B in chemistry.

*post title is from joe walsh's 'life's been good.' you know that song rocks.

Tuesday, January 16, 2007

i did my 30 minute belly dancing workout tape both yesterday and today
and am feeling pretty proud of myself.

jesus, that's creepy.

Sunday, January 14, 2007

buon compleanno principessa

i'm 23 years old and baby sister just turned 1. man ... life changes so much. a few years ago, i never could have envisioned things the way they are. it's weird.

my life is stressful, but i never would have thought myself so lucky as to be where i am, with the person i'm with.

Thursday, January 11, 2007

do you know where you're going to?

“Yearnings reveal the presence of a talent, particularly when they are felt early in life. At ten years of age the actors Matt Damon and Ben Affleck, already close friends, would find a quiet spot in the school cafeteria and hold meetings to discuss their latest acting “projects.” At thirteen Picasso was already enrolled in adult art school. At five the architect Frank Gehry made intricate models on the living room floor with wood scraps from his father’s hardware store. And Mozart had written his first symphony by the time he turned twelve” (pp. 69-70, Now, Discover Your Strengths, Buchkingham & Clifton, © 2001).
i'm reading this book for work, and in the section this excerpt was taken from, the authors discuss how our innate talents manifest at a young age. while reading it, i thought back to what i was doing as a child.

my passion was writing stories and plays. i also enjoyed interviewing people with my talkboy and creating radio shows and newspapers. i think i was destined for a life in communications and media.

i don't know why i never thought seriously about those careers as a child or teenager or even young adult. i never walked around saying "i want to be a writer" until like a year or two ago. what, did i just block all that out? when i was in high school, i shrugged off the possibility of becoming an english major in college despite the fact that i used to get really excited at bookstores, especially about literature.

i can be really dense sometimes.

Tuesday, January 09, 2007

registered for my online classes a few days ago and have been checking them out today. two american lits (one the standard 1865-present type and the other focuses on the 1960's), one shakespeare and one creative writing. i didn't expect them to be easy or anything but it just hit me how much work i have ahead of me when i begin working full-time.

can we fix it?? YES WE CAN!!

it'll just be a bitch, that's all.

in other news, i thought that kid sisters had reached an age where i could read to them from a children's book sans pictures each night and it would be like a bonding thing for us. they weren't interested in e.b. white's classics in the library this evening so i pulled out my chronicles of narnia and started with the lion, the witch and the wardrobe. it was difficult at first - these kids are not used to following anything that isn't visual - but when i tried to give up out of frustration, they urged me to continue and began following the story intently. tomorrow night we will pick up again with lucy and mr tumnus on their way to have tea at his place. (nothing good ever comes out of going back to his place.) i hope the white witch doesn't scare them.

(my sisters didn't draw this or anything; i found it on google and it was too adorable not to put up here.)


"Sorry we do not have good news for you."

yeah, that's something i want to hear from a publisher i sent my story to.

i'm starting to be a little disappointed that people will publish my stuff for free, but no one will pay me for my writing. woman cannot live on glory alone.

Monday, January 08, 2007

i am looking over all 23 pages of my wishlist and salivating. anyone who says gift cards are not good gifts is delusional.

Sunday, January 07, 2007

happy birthday to meee

my birthday lunch went very nicely. of the 19 people who rsvped, 11 came, which was still a nice size crowd. i was a bit disappointed with the indian food - have definitely had better - but it was a nice place and most of the finickies were fine with the food. guest list included: boyfriend, sister, bro, veteran seeker, future priest, high school friends, the program coordinator from my old fellowship and three people i worked with in venice. seeing my regular friends made me really happy; they are such great people and so much fun to hang out with. seeing my venice friends made me happy but a little sad; it really reminded me of how we always used to sit around and b.s. in cafes and restaurants, and i missed it. that really was an amazing summer.

my friends gave me so many gift cards, i don't know what to do with them all. i foresee a lot of new books and stuff in my future :) kid sisters gave me a silver heart bracelet (that mother had something to do with; kid sister #1's idea for my present was to give me a barbie doll) and sister gave me a stuffed walrus (get it?), a jars of clay concert dvd and a gigunda pink alice in wonderland mug that i adore. mother gave me the dvd box set of the vicar of dibley and we had an ice cream cake. could they know me any better?

Saturday, January 06, 2007

the love song

"I grow old … I grow old …
I shall wear the bottoms of my trousers rolled."

Friday, January 05, 2007


breakfast: bowl of honey graham o's with 2% milk
lunch: lean pocket, small salad, one snackwell cookie, glass of water

i started exercising again a couple of days ago and am now eating right, so i should be able to whittle my waistline away in the future. aunt flo, however, is on her way, which means i will be fatso for another week. but that's ok - i bought a fatso birthday outfit and all is good.

the party guest list is up to 18 people and myself. shit, that's a lot of people, and yet i can't think of one i'm not dying to see, which means it will be awesome. i also feel that i'm doing some friends a real favor by introducing them to indian food. i wish the traveler was in town and could come, though.

Wednesday, January 03, 2007

i do

Questions Couples Should Ask (Or Wish They Had) Before Marrying

since I've been back home, many of my friends have asked me when i'm getting married. my dad asked. bro asked. high school friend asked. my boss asked. fellow seeker's ex asked months ago after seeing a cute picture of the two of us.

marriage is an interesting thing. i don't really know what to make of it because i have seen many bad examples and the rest of my experience comes from the media and the unwritten code that asserts that you become boring, sexless creatures when you get married. the woman starts nagging, the man sits on his ass and expects housework done while he watches football... you know what i mean. i know that every marriage has its issues but i can't think of many healthy ones that i am aware of.

i have given marriage a lot of thought for a feminist my age. before i went to italy, i would have jumped for joy at a proposal from boyfriend. i am the type of woman who likes stability and wants one serious, reliable relationship. i do not like to shop around or date different men; it is not in my nature. i have found a good thing - an excellent thing, rather - with boyfriend and i am fully aware of that.

after going to europe, i realized just how big the world is and just how much i could possibly do in my life. i still want to marry boyfriend, but certainly not now. i will only be 23 this weekend.

then there are times when i feel like marriage will give me the stability i seek since my family has morphed into something it never used to be and there is not much of a place for me in it. visiting them is a wonderful thing, but i will never live here again unless i absolutely must. i have moved on to a new stage of life.

living with boyfriend feels like marriage and i am not sure what a ring and a ceremony would change. it is more the finances and the legal obligations that are the difference. will i wake up the day after my wedding and feel like our relationship is completely different? i don't know. it's possible but i don't see how.

i have met people who are committed to each other but do not intend to marry ever. they say that they don't want society's approval, as if their relationship only becomes legitimate on their wedding day. they feel that this will nullify what it was before the marriage and this is something they disapprove of.

i know that i am, as bro once called me, "the marrying kind." i would never be happy with just living together in my thirties, forties and beyond. i don't want to have children until after i am married. i guess i am pretty traditional in that sense.

they say you shouldn't make any important life decisions until 25 years old and above anyway because before that your brain wires are still developing and connecting, or something like that.

boyfriend and i have discussed getting married in a couple of years. some days i wish it were sooner - i want the wedding with family and friends and all the pomp and circumstance to celebrate what we have - but some days the waiting period is just fine with me. i need an in-between period instead of going straight from my parents' house into a marriage. my 20s are more valuable than i am giving them credit for, and with some hard work and probably a bit of luck, i will be married for decades to come anyway.

Tuesday, January 02, 2007

"She was a traditionally built lady, after all, and she did not have to worry about dress size, unlike those poor, neurotic people who were always looking in mirrors and thinking that they were too big. What was too big, anyway? Who was to tell another person what size they should be? It was a form of dictatorship, by the thin, and she was not having any of it. If these thin people became any more insistent, then the more generously sized people would just have to sit on them. Yes, that would teach them! Hah!"

- Alexander McCall Smith, Morality for Beautiful Girls

vroom vroom

boyfriend lending me the laptop + kid sisters going back to school makes for an environment that is quite conducive to doing my work and some creative writing on the side. i am much more at peace with the world today.

on new years, i got slapped with a $65 ticket for my inspection sticker being expired. nobody has any holiday spirit, i suppose. thanks folks for not telling me when it would expire, considering i have been away for three months. *rolls eyes* that plus the $37 inspection fee has pissed me off a bit.

i woke up at 7:45 to get my car over to the mechanic first thing this morning only for him to make me wait a half hour to tell me that he doesn't have the new 2007 stickers yet. i had to spend those thirty minutes looking at his collection of toy cars, "best in show" trophies and girly posters. he kept running around the place, a cigarette hanging out of his mouth as i glanced at the large, red NO SMOKING sign in the office. i looked at the pictures of his children and wondered if his wife minds the girly posters, but then assumed that she must just accept the fact that he's a "man's man," being a mechanic and all. he's bulky with long, blond hair in a ponytail and dirt under his fingernails and he calls me sweetheart ... fits the profile. i wonder what the world would be like if you went to predominantly female establishments, like salons or shoe stores, and saw that the proprietors had pinned up scantily-clad men. would it just be accepted because "she's a real woman?"

(might i make a suggestion, sweetheart? put up something like this. it's a little less degrading, thanks. okay, off the tangent-slash-soapbox now.)

the only good the experience did me was to provide fuel for writing. i had to take lilith to a couple more places before i could unload her on someone. apparently no one wants to do inspections anymore; i guess it's not the "in" thing. fuckers.

anyway, going to continue sipping my tea and working and will check back in later. *sigh*

Monday, January 01, 2007

happy 2007

i hope everyone thoroughly enjoyed themselves last night. as for me, i rang in the new year with boyfriend, his aunt and his cousin. we played scrabble (i won) and chinese checkers (i lost, as in 4th place out of 4 people), ate turkish food and had champagne and black-and-white cake at midnight. boyfriend's mother was on the phone from indonesia at one point and asked to talk to me. she wished me a happy new year and said that she hoped they weren't forcing too much indian food down my throat :)

today has been just lounging around. it is rainy, which is no real motivation to do anything. we are just now preparing ourselves for an excursion to the book store and then ice cream. woohoo :)

other than that, not much is going on. i decided on an indian lunch for my birthday. already five of my friends have rsvped with a big, fat YES and i am excited.