Monthly Archives: October 2013

And Suddenly, Marching Band is the Coolest

This is just stupid good. This is probably the best thing I have ever seen on the Internet. HOW DID THEY DO THIS?!

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NaNoWriMo 2013

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It’s NaNoWriMo time again! NaNoWriMo stands for National Novel Writing Month, which takes place every November. Basically, you sign up on the website and commit to writing 50,000 words (essentially, a complete novel) during the month of November.  It’s intense. If you finish it, you “win” NaNoWriMo.

NaNo isn’t actually a competition, in the traditional sense. It’s a competition with yourself, really. There are no prizes, and your book doesn’t automatically get published at the end. No one is judging your work (well, I suppose YOU are judging your work, and anyone you show it to, but there are no JUDGES in any official capacity).

It’s meant for those of us who want to write a book. Those of us with dreams of being authors, published or not. Those people with that niggling feeling in the back of their brains, that feeling that you have a story that just needs to get out. It’s a challenge  to commit to just doing the dang thing. Write that gosh darn book just so you can say you did! Even if at the end of November you shove the thing into a forgotten corner of your hard drive and never look at it again. At least you know you have the capacity to DO it.

I’ve attempted NaNo oh, I think three times? I’ve finished it once. It is hard, man. And I ended up hating my finished product. Okay, it wasn’t even finished. I wrote 50k words and it wasn’t even a complete book.  It was really just 50k words strung together into sentences. I liked the premise, and I still do, but I wasn’t ready to write that story. I may never be ready to write that story. It may actually be a complete dud and I’ll never go back to it again. But not every attempt is going to be a success.

I’ve committed to NaNoWriMo again this year, and I am super excited. Originally I was going to go with an idea I’ve had percolating in my mind for a little while now. The vague idea of it sounded good to me, but I couldn’t make any real details stick. When I tried to come up with a solid plot my chest would constrict and my eye would start to twitch. Nope, that idea is definitely not ready to be born yet.

So last night, three days before this thing is going to start, I changed my course. I’ve decided to go with an idea I’ve had for YEARS. I mean a seriously long time. I actually wrote the first iteration of this story when I was about 12. And it’s been with me ever since, because I think the idea is good and I know I can totally blow the version my 12-year-old self wrote out of the water (no offense, 12-year-old me). It’s been adamantly knocking around in my head for a few months, just begging to be written, but I’ve been squashing it down. I don’t know why. I’ve kind of always thought this idea would be my pièce de résistance and I didn’t want to let it loose too soon. You know, before I felt I had the skillz to write it.  But no sense waiting, I suppose. The time is now! Carpe diem! YOLO! So it’s happening.

Wish me luck.

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Block Island | September 2013

Why yes, this post SHOULD have gone up at least a month ago. Oopsie. Anyway, N and I went down to visit his grandmother during the final days of my Funemployment. She lives in Narragansett, RI and her house is definitely one of my very favorite places. It reminds me a little bit of the house my grandparents used to have on Cape Cod, and that Cape Cod house was my mostest favorite place in the world.

N’s grandmother’s house is right behind the parking lot for Narragansett beach and you can see the ocean from her back deck. It’s beautiful.

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We got down there on a Thursday night and hung out with Nana, having cocktails and cheese and crackers and watching the moonrise.

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Please excuse the grainy zoomed-in iPhone photo.

Once Nana was done forcing drinks and snacks down our throats (seriously, you can’t say no to a grandmother, you just can’t), we headed out for snacks and drinks and to play a little Keno, typical of us. But since occasionally N can be super adorable, he played our birthdays and our anniversary, swoon.

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We didn’t win.

The next morning, N made us breakfast and  we decided to take the ferry out from Point Judith and go to Block Island. We’d been years ago, and I’ve wanted to go back ever since. It’s a beautiful island off the coast of Rhode Island with beaches and lighthouses and most importantly, scooters. All I wanted to do was rent a scooter and practice scooting. N thinks I should learn how to ride a motorcycle, but I am a chicken. So I thought riding a scooter on my own would be good practice. That’s probably a stretch, but, baby steps. We wanted to take his bike over with us, but the ferry wasn’t taking anymore motorcycles. N was not pleased.

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It was a beautiful fall day. We got off the ferry, rented a scooter (we would have each gotten one, but they are pretty dang expensive and like I said, I was Funemployed at the time and not too into spending frivolously), and headed off to explore the island. I decided to let N drive us around for a bit before I took my turn (I was scurred) so we went to find Mohegan Bluffs.

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We climbed down all the stairs (we counted them, but I can’t remember how many there are, only that N won the guess bet) to the beach below. It was very rocky and people had built little castles and towers out of the rocks. Seriously, so pretty. Then we got back to scootin’.

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We stopped to get some snacks and a beer and scooted off to find a little nature trail so we could wander around and relax for a bit. We pulled the scooter over into what looked like a secluded little area, only to have an older couple immediately pull up behind us on bicycles and start to follow us. Hello! Can we get a little privacy? There are 80 bajillion other little trails to walk and they had to pick this one? Ugh. Anyway, we walked to the end of the trail which basically just ended at a little inlet and we opened our beer like the classy folks we are and hung out for a bit. The other couple finally took the hint and turned back.

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Then, since N drank most of the beer, it was my turn to helm the scooter. And I did it! N said he was so proud of me, even though I legit didn’t go over 20mph, haha.

Behold! Evidence!

 

Watching these it is clear how comically slow I was going. Whatever, next stop, motorcycle (maybe).

Once our time on the scooter was up, we headed back into town for an early dinner and to catch the ferry back to Point Judith. We then spent Friday night having drinks with Nana and watching Wheel of Fortune and Jeopardy. Solid Friday, right there. We got a late start home (we didn’t want to miss Jeopardy) and I was snuggled in my bed by 10:30. It was a glorious getaway and exactly what I needed with all that stressful Funemployment crap going on. Until next time, Block Island!

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Friday Night Likes | 05

This week I have a little round-up of links I enjoyed this week:

Haunted Doll – a little pre-Halloween fun. Don’t worry, this isn’t scary.

Where in the US Do You Belong? – you’ve probably seen this already, but just in case. I belong in Oregon! What about you?

40 Financial Things You Should Know by 40 – excellent, I still have 13 years to get this ish down.

Nest Thermostat – this thing just seems so cool. And warm. (Get it? Because it’s a thermostat? Heh heh.)

 

Also,  I have GRAND PLANS of blogging something other than Friday Night Likes in the coming weeks, I promise. Life has just been getting away from me lately, woof.

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Friday Night Likes | 4

 

butter toast USB handwarmers

butter toast USB handwarmers

Okay, these might be a little crazy, but I love them. They’re little happy toasts! That keep your hands warm! They plug into your computer and heat up and keep your fingers toasty while you work.

My office is really cold, you guys. I might need these. What do you think? Is this insane? Will they set my cubicle on fire?

Butta USB Handwarmer – Sosie

Friday Night Likes | 3

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This. This is my favorite thing. A big, comfy bed and lots of time to sleep in it. Add a book and you have my weekend. I am SO looking forward to a nice relaxing weekend. Sleeping in, reading magazines (new Domino, hayyy!), and maybe a trip to Target if I’m feeling sassy.

What are you guys doing this weekend? Do you prefer to relax or stay busy on the weekends? (I’m an admitted home body and hermit and totally fine with it.)

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Tales from Funemployment: Conclusion

My brief yet stressful stint as an unemployed woman is over! Though I suppose I was never technically unemployed in the first place. This whole short series was a complete lie right from the start.

Anyway, I’m officially employed now so it doesn’t even matter anymore. I’m still at the same company, which I have mixed feelings about. On the one hand, I am a creature of habit and this place is familiar to me now. On the other hand, I now have a sour taste in my mouth due to this place and I don’t exactly feel as secure here as I once did.  i do really like my new job so far, though. I’m doing copy editing and I’m really excited to begin building my skills in this area. I think this will help make me better suited for more opportunities in the future and will hopefully help me on my way to my dream job.

The work is so completely different from everything I was doing before. It’s so relaxing! I don’t dread coming in to work anymore. I don’t have to worry about meetings and putting fires out and playing goalie with my inbox. I just get to come in, quietly do my work, and go home. It’s fabulous. It’s providing me with a much needed mental break.

I’m just happy I can get my life back on track. Though I think the track may look a bit different from here on out. Stay tuned. I think it’s going to be good.

 

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Friday Night Likes | 02

Ann Street Studio

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I mean. Everything on this website is beautiful. And the CINEMAGRAPHS. A cinemagraph is my most favorite thing in the world, I think. Jamie & Kevin Burg are insanely talented. All the photography is exquisite and I just lost a half hour of my life perusing the website looking for pictures to use. I had a hard time paring it down. Plus, how out-of-this-world gorgeous is Jamie? Complete glam, always. I want to be her when I grow up.

*all pictures via annstreetstudio.com. click the photos to go to the posts they originally appeared in.*

All the Things

Making: pumpkin and apple everything. All I want to do is bake in the fall.
Cooking: dinner.  I’m working on paying more attention to what I’m eating again.
Drinking: water. And not enough. Have to work on that. Also, ALL THE PUMPKIN BEER. I love fall.
Reading: Nothing! Can you believe it? I’ve read seven books (including these) in the last two-ish weeks and now I’ve run out. Suggestions?
Wanting: my own place again. Living with mom isn’t the worst scenario, but it’s taxing. And I want my own space back. All in due time, grasshopper.
Looking: for clarity.
Playing: the Juno soundtrack. It’s a good one that I forgot about.
Wasting: probably food. Why do I always cook like I’m making a meal for 800 people?
Sewing: I have two pairs of pants I need to hem. Add that to my every growing To Do list.
Wishing: for stability. Roots. A place to call my own.
Enjoying: the ride. Or trying to, anyway.
Waiting: for things to fall into place.
Liking:  did we talk about the pumpkin beer situation? Oh, we did? Okay then.
Wondering: oh gosh. I’m always wondering. I’m wondering if I should have a snack.
Loving: living with my puppy again. I love the greeting I get when I come home from work.
Hoping: I get my shit together.
Marveling: at the amount of clothes my mother has. Why can’t we be the same size, why?
Needing:  my dream job. Could someone tell me what it is? And then help me get it?
Smelling: dog breath.
Wearing: workout clothes that MATCH.
Following: my gut.
Noticing: the changing color of the leaves. Love it.
Knowing: that everything will end up the way it’s supposed to.
Thinking: that I want to go to the bookstore.
Feeling: more awake than I should.
Bookmarking: photography tutorials.
Opening: emails. And unsubscribing from all this inbox clutter.
Giggling: while watching New Girl with my mom.
Feeling: optimistic.

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I’ve been meaning to share these pictures since before summer, but then I forgot (clearly). I took one photo a month in the same spot for a year, and here they are. I took them all using very advanced photographic technology (also know as an iPhone 4S).  No filters.

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The commute from my apartment to work last year took me through mostly back roads and farm land, which is a-ok with me, because I got to see beautiful things like this every day. I just pulled my car over, rolled down the window, and took a snap.  These were all taken on my way to work, so between 7-7:30am for the majority of them.

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I think October and April are my favorites.

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