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Advent Poetry: Love

The final theme of Advent is Love.
Hope
Peace
Joy
and now a poem on Love.


Love has a beginning
in one heart.

And one heart only.

Before it lives in two,
binding them together,
pulling others in,
growing
skipping
pounding
moving -

Before all that,

there is one heart
that beats
and beats again.


Merry Christmas, all!

Table Scraps (Round 26)

Nadine left for the holidays before I was ready for her to go. I have texted and emailed her this week to tell her so... Sigh. She did, however, leave behind the last of the delicious spinach dip (more to come at our upcoming "Dip-Fest" New Year's Eve), and these quotes that I've filed away over the last six months (last week's list is here):  



her: I do not need spiritual farting at my wedding reception.



her: I think I have to choose my boyfriend over drunk girls, and there is a chance that I'd have to share a bed with a gay man, and I'm not sure how I feel about that.



her: I was going to say a boy has never made me breakfast, but I think Matt poured me a bowl of cereal once.



her: Tell me when your bedtime is and I'll just give you the silent treatment after a certain point.



her: If he were trying at all, and failing, that would be one thing...
me: He's not trying. If he were, he wouldn't be failing.
her: That's fine then. It's okay to make…

26 Secrets

Way back in the summer, a friend and I were discussing Postsecret. She'd recently sent in a couple of postcards, and I asked her, "Do you want them to show up on the site? Or are you afraid that they will? Because I think I would feel a bit of both."

"One of them already did," she responded.

"WHAT!? For real!?"

She told me which postcard was hers; I remembered it. She also told me that the real secret was written underneath, and since Frank Warren does not tamper with the mail he receives, it will stay a secret.

In the ensuing conversation, we talked about the nature of secrets, the reality that most secrets are partial secrets; there are very few things that people hold as complete secrets from all others.


Knowing that I've considered mailing in a postcard or two myself, she asked if my secrets are actual secrets or partial secrets.

I paused when she asked, considering how to answer.

"I have both," I finally replied.


I have been thinkin…

Advent Poetry: Joy

Looking back on Week 3 of Advent, here is my poem about Joy.


Joy is always
a surprise

because it cannot be tainted
by the bitter bite
of disappointment.

It is solitary,
independent,
seemingly arbitrary
in the way it chooses
where to make its home.

And then,
it comes
with pomp and ceremony,
startling inhabitants,
settling in
and presiding over all goings-on
with confidence
and clarity.


Week 1: Hope
Week 2: Peace

More Christmas Music

After last week's post, a friend pointed out that my videos were more "winter" songs than "Christmas." Here are some of my favourite Christmas carols, for Kolten & any others who thought the same.


First, the ultimate a cappella song:

(does anyone else think of McGee and Me when they hear this?) My brother told me to check out this a cappella crew, so props to you, Stephen. And I feel the need to tell you all that I liked a cappella before it was cool. Just like I had fashion glasses before hipsters existed. My inner nerd has become trendy, but it wasn't always that way...


O Come, O Come, Emmanuel



Come, Though Long Expected Jesus
(I can't find any videos of decent versions. So let's all just take a minute and hum it to ourselves.)


O Holy Night

It was also difficult to find a version that I truly like of this song. But Josh Groban is OKAY. I SUPPOSE.


and one modern song:




I've realized that most of my favourite Christmas songs are in minor keys. I think…

Dip On the Brain (Round 25)

Nadine is sick. She tried blaming some of these statements on "sick brain" but such a thing does not exist. (I mentioned last week that I am thinking of ending this series. After 6 months of weekly quotes, I've decided that next week will be the last one, although I will continue to share hilarious things she & others say in a non-scheduled format)



her: I'm like an old lady. I blame low estrogen. My brain goes through menopause.


her: I hate big parties and clubs and I'm broke. But I like... making dip!


her: I'm gonna prove to you that I'm a grown up too.
me: How?
her: By copying you.


her: Can I have a clap-on, clap-off TV, please? Matthew, this is great, but...


her: It's stupid, because vampires are COLD and they SPARKLE and those are deal-breakers for me.


her: Can we just eat dip forever? I'll go on a dip diet. And get so fat. Its essentially a mayonnaise diet. Which has egg in it. That's good for you.


her: It's like I'm a reality TV show …
More texts you probably don't care about. But I want to keep a record of these things. So, lucky you.


you look like friendship
Call me needy, but I think it would be impossible to have my friendships affirmed too often.

:) Just remembered awards ceremony at nuit blanche :).
This was one highlight of a great night I fully intended to blog about. The applause of strangers is affirming.

Is he clueless?
Yes, he is. But the humour of this situation...can be publicized in a year or two.

Sounds good, chumbitt.
I think I am okay with being a chumbitt?

Ah. How have we not learnt to teleport. I want hugs.
I concur. Teleportation should have been invented long ago, and I also want hugs.

Be less white. Home guuurrrlll
Sorry. I'll try.

You are great. S and i like you and your face. And your hair.
I like this pair of girls as well. It also seems that my hair may be the most popular part of me.

You know what? I love you.
This was the first time this friend had said this to me. And it was in a contex…

Advent Poetry: Peace

This past week's Advent theme was Peace.
Here is a poem:

Peace. Shalom.
Be still.
And also with you.
Completion and wholeness.
It is now. It is here.
It is seeping and creeping coming up slowly.
A heavy weight of being known.
Loved and loving. Rest in redemption. The roots that hold us upright.


(last week's poem on Hope is here.)

Current Christmas Favourites

Christmas music is the main staple of my listening diet these days. I am eagerly awaiting the 2010 Christmas Mix from Fuel/Friends, and otherwise enjoying a playlist that may or may not include a Celine Dion album (although, apparently, I'm not supposed to admit that) and 200 other songs for the season.


Snow Club - Christmas TV

The "Come on home" chorus reminds me of a poem I wrote about a week before I first heard this song. I love it.


Rudolph the Red-Nosed Reindeer (You Don't Have to Put on the Red Light)

Either Christmas treason, or the best thing ever. (Every time I hear Roxanne I am reminded of the time a friend sang this song at karaoke, turning every "Roxanne" into "Beth Anne" and pointing me out to the entire bar.)


It Snowed - Meaghan Smith

I WANT A SNOW DAY LIKE THAT!!!!


The Holidays Are Here (and we're still at war) - Brett Dennan

I think this is a great contrast to Xmas is Here (War is Over).


and the too-indie-for-youtube songs:

Jeremy Fisher…

Quotes from a Handmaid That Spun My Head

I have a strange love of dystopian literature.

I read Animal Farm (of my own initiative!) in Grade 8. (I also read The Scarlet Letter that year...I applaud my teacher for allowing me these freedoms; the higher-ups must not have known.) Brave New World was the best thing I read in Grade 11, and Lord of the Flies threw me under a bus in Grade 10. 1984 (possibly an independent read) still haunts me. As does Heart of Darkness.

I remember picking The Handmaid's Tale by Margaret Atwood off a turnstile in my high school library, although I can't recall if someone recommended it to me, or I just stumbled across it in my regular browsing of the books. As a particularly naïve teenager, I'm quite sure I didn't understand half of what I was reading. But I recognized that it was shocking and profound, and it went on to my list of favourite novels.

Ten years later, four small things brought The Handmaid's Tale back into my life:
I discovered it was the 25th anniversary of its public…

Spoken Like a Former Drama Major... (Round 24)

Nadine. Still amusing. Although I am thinking about ending this series, she is continually fantastic. But don't get the wrong idea; most of her fantastic-ness comes out in the heart-to-heart conversations that don't get pulled out of context. Toronto's Best Roommate.



her: I don't know how Arabs work. I've never had one.


her: Amy Grant is like my third parent.



me: You've never seen a fake tattoo-sleeve before??
her: This is brilliant. I need one.


her: If you're on a roll, you can make $20/hr. And my bank account is inspiring me to be on a roll.


her: I'm not going to charge you for half of the remote. Since it might as well go with the TV. That way, we don't have custody issues.


her: That's a deal breaker! I could never marry or date or be seen in public with a Whiffenpoof.


her: Drama students...they'll make out with anything that's alive.


her: I like it when actors have brains.


her: I was already going to get up early to help you get dressed.


her:…

The Dating Dare: Universal Truths

These are my relationship thoughts from over the course of my matchmaking month that I think are important and true, whether looking for love online or offline:


Articulation and effort matters. If every answer on your profile is one sentence long, if you respond to my questions with vague and brief answers, I am not getting to see that you are being thoughtful about this process. I want to know that you find me actually interesting, that you are engaged and focused on our interaction, even if it is brief, and even if it is online, and even if it goes nowhere in the end. Don't be a conversation killer! Use open-ended questions (ie, ones that require more than a yes/no answer). When you have the option to make your own answer on a multiple choice question, do it! At least for 1 of the 5. The same principles apply when mingling at a party. Be your best self. Show that you have personality!


Unless you don't have a personality. Which leads us to lesson #2. You are who you are, and …

Dear December 6,

You were just about perfect.

A first snowfall.
A sleeping child.
A book that is flooring me.
A creative project that terrifies me.
A few happy conversations.

Let's have a few more days like this, okay?
Beth

The Dating Dare: Self-Awareness

I am glad I did this little eHarmony experiment, because at the very least, I learned things about myself; what I am attracted to, afraid of, and look for in my interactions with men. Here are some of them.


I am a bit more racist than I thought. It is easier to be a racist online than in person, because all you see is a one-word label. I kind of wish eHarmony had a function where I could turn off viewing ethnicities, so that I could protect myself from myself.

I would not say I am a picky person about looks (my crushes have ranged in every way possible when it comes to appearance), but excessive extra weight is a deal-breaker for me. I couldn't see anyone's photos without paying, and my instinctive fear every time I got a message from someone I found interesting was, What if they're FAT!? In my defense, I think this was a specific manifestation of the fear, What if I find them physically unattractive?? I have liked pudgy/overweight/burly/sturdy men in the past. And am sure…

Advent Poetry: Hope

This Advent season, I am visiting The Advent Door and Christmas Is Happening for a much needed dose of Jesus-focused art and thought. And I have decided to write a poem each week.

Here is my poem on Hope.

Hope is watching
waiting
preparing

Believing that the unknown
will come any day,

Knocking down walls
and swinging doors open

Sweeping the dust
that's piled in corners
into the streets
and out of our lives.

It is knowing
that a hurricane comes
to rearrange all things

To shake us
stir us
change and make us

More.

It is saying
that life is unfinished
and the best is yet to be.

The Dating Dare: Honesty Isn't Always Best

If you want to use the internet to find a woman like me (for the sake of this entry, I will describe myself as independent, intellectual, genuine and Jesus-loving), here are three things you should probably not write on your profile:


under Additional Information You May Want To Know:
“AM HORNY LOVING GUY”

Ok. Let's be frank. Sex and sexuality is a part of life: particularly romantic relationships. I recognize that. I also recognize that men tend to be more open with their sexual desires than women (although that is changing in our culture – yet another topic I have thoughts enough to write an entire post on!). But as someone commented when I told them about this, “Isn't that stating the obvious? I would say you should publicize only if you're NOT a horny guy, because then you're unique.”

Honestly. A sexual relationship is not the only thing that most women are looking for. Sex is a part of the bigger, holistic relationship. When you are self-professed as a “horny-loving…

The Dating Dare: Intro

(This has grown into a series of entries, because it's not fair to ask you to read four pages of writing in one sitting. I know you won't, anyway. But this time, I've already written the whole series, so there won't be any surprise fake-outs and take-backs.)


One of the tried-and-true foundations of my friendship with Nadine is that when it comes to the world of dating advice and adventures, we've got each other's backs. This looks like a variety of things. Sometimes, it is being the confidante for confusion and heartache. Sometimes it is lending a helping hand (or word) in communicating with the mysterious male species. Sometimes it is giggling joyfully. And sometimes, it is daring each other to do crazy things.

I once told Nadine she should email and then go on a date with a man who approached her friend at a bar to ask if Nadine was single. And you know what? She did. I think I then helped her tell him she was uninterested in another date.

So when she dared …

Special Non-Holiday Edition (Round 23)

Special Edition!!!!

Are you curious about the theme?


Last month, I told you all that Nadine dared me to go on eHarmony for a month of free communication. So I did. I will post my thoughts and some of my experiences within the next few days. Until then, enjoy these hilarious and sometimes unkind things that she had to say about online matchmaking.



her: Oh, no! Don't do that, boys! It's so evil and rude and gross!

her:WHY? Why. Are. You.

her: Oh, he's white, good.
(to clarify, his ethnicity confirmed that he was not a "ladykiller" acquaintance with the same name...)

her: I break up with him on your behalf! "Dear ______, This is Beth's roommate. I break up with you on her behalf. Have a nice life. Good luck being right ALL the time."

her: AH! Cancel! Quit! Throw your computer! (Poor shy quiet Christian man...)

her: Did you ever hear back from the guy when you said, "I don't love you."?
me: What?
her: You know, the fat guy.
(to clarify, the "fat…

In Bed Before Eleven

Tonight, I was going to write a blog entry about Advent and this being the Week of Hope.

Instead, I responded vulnerably to a vulnerably honest email and wrote a poem that will not be making an appearance on this blog.


Last night, a friend told me they'd been catching up on my blog after a long spell of not reading it. Curious, I asked, "And what did you learn about my life from it?"

"I learned that there are pictures of you in a bikini somewhere."

Not the response I expected. But funny. And true.

There are photos of me in a bikini, and there are poems I have written this month, and neither are going to make it onto the blog.

I am flaunting my right to privacy. Is that rude?

You know what though, tonight's emails showed me that when someone is willing to risk vulnerability with me, I can surprise even myself with my ability to be honest in return.


The End.

Fridge Poetry

Nadine and I have magnetic poetry on our fridge door. I always wanted magnetic poetry when I was small. It is very satisfying to have it as a part of my "grown-up life."

Whenever I spot a new poem, I smile. This one made me laugh out loud tonight:


Spiderman could not climb the tree
So he cursed every blossom
& his life



And this is one I am quite proud of writing:

I am bruised like a cliche

Yesterday I Fell In Love...

...with a pair of boots.

I hate shoe shopping. There are so few shoes that fit right, that are that perfect intersection of comfort, style, and utility.

And right now, I need winter shoes. Winter boots and winter shoes. At least two pairs of durable and warm foot coverings for the coming months.


These boots hit the sweet spot.

Now to drum up $250 so I can call them my own.

Kidding. I'll just think about them.

All.
Winter.
Long.

She's That Kind of Girl, Folks (Round 22)*

Two preamble thoughts:
a) I was going to save some of these for future weeks that are lacking, but I just couldn't choose which ones to pull. They're all soooooooo good.
b) I've decided that Nadine is like Sleep Talkin' Man, except she says outrageous things when she is awake and uses less profanity. Also, there are fewer talking animals. 
That is all.
(Here are the last twenty-one weeks.)


her: I'm trying to play Lexulous and it's stressing me out.

her: Are you not participating in my pity party???


her: I don't want spells on my underwear.

her: If I didn't have a body...It would be much cheaper to live.

her: Remember when I said I was going to get up and brush my teeth? Iiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiii...didn't really mean it.

her: It's not like, oh crap, I'm in an unhappy marriage because my mother WILLED it.

her: Is that a sign of being a grown-up? Paying for the dentist instead of going to a Hanson concert?

her: If not, I'll pull out my Rob Ford face.
me…

Things That Are Difficult

Being on the receiving end of unexpected generosity.Taking conversations with new friends from the "mid-range" level to the "honestly honest" level.Knowing how to handle gossip.Being patient with small children.Being patient with overgrown children. Waiting. For pretty much anything. Going to bed on time.That is all.

For today.

Advent Doors

I didn't grow up in a liturgically-religious family, and I only vaguely understood Advent and Lent for a long time. But since I finished university, I've realized that liturgy can be beautiful and solemn and joyful and incredibly meaningful.

Last year, a friend sent me a link to a site called The Advent Door. It's a series of paintings and reflections to take you through the Advent season. I am going to enjoy it again this year, and wanted to share it with you all, should you be looking for some liturgy and art this month.

I won't promise it, but I'm considering my blogging my thoughts/answers to her reflective questions. You could then leave comments with your own additions.



(Santa Claus parade occurred today and I walked past part of it... Apparently Shrek, tractor trailers, and Westjet airplanes are now "holiday themed." Who would have known.)

Megamind = Megasmiles

Since I woke up this morning thinking about Megamind, I thought I'd just say that if you have a child, access to a child, or are a child at heart, you should go and see it. Hilarious and heartwarming.

Here is the final trailer:


And the ComicCon trailer:


And a clip of witty banter:

Kids. Still Cute!

Since this week ended on a surprisingly high note (who would have thought I'd not only survive a PD Day, but actually enjoy it!?), I'm going to share some fun nannying moments before I forget again that this job can be glorious.

First, G. and I are getting along great. His favourite topic of conversation is "Things I Could Beat Beth At" and the list is endless (in his mind). I have trouble knowing how to encourage him without lying and/or inflating his ego in an unhealthy way.

I also love telling him how much I appreciate his patience with C. This positive reinforcement seems to help.


And now a list of funny things that C. has said recently:

(eating a cracker) Crunchy things get wet in your mouth. Want to feel it?

(after blowing me a kiss) There were no hearts when I did that!

(talking about his "girlfriend") I just walked up to her and gave her a hug. I can't believe I did that! And then I gave her a kiss! I can't believe I did that!

(the girlfriend ag…

Pondering Follicular & Other Situations (Round 21)

Nadine-quotes are now being collected for a special themed-edition that will run early in December... You'll love it. I know this, because I love it. (Hint: one of last week's quotes is on this theme. But you wouldn't know it.)


Without further ado, this week's quotes:


me: Okay. I'm going pee. Then to bed. (this is my way of ending our conversation late at night)
her: Pee, then bed. That's the best order.

her: Yeah, he has gay face.

me: I have two questions for you.
her: Hello.

her: I like voices.

her: You know how you said massive clubbing? I may have written down massive sex. What's massive sex?
me: Um, I said excessive clubbing.

me:(prepping for Mumford & Sons) I don't know if I have EVER been so excited for a concert!
her: It's like you're me, when I was 18 and going to see Jake.

her: I have never sat down to ponder the follicular situation of men.

I Lie, I Lie, And I Lie. And... I Lie.*

I recently told a friend that I'd realized a fundamental difference between the two of us.

“You lie to yourself a lot less than I do. Either you honestly have not realized something about who you are and how you act OR you own up to it, admit it to yourself and others, and move along. I, on the other hand, will realize something about myself and then proceed to pretend it's not true, hiding it from others and denying it while simultaneously attempting to change it.”
Public self-reflection, a deep honesty and vulnerability are not easy for me. In the words of Marcus Mumford, “I am afraid of what I will discover inside.

In the past few weeks, I've heard myself telling more lies than usual (or maybe I'm just more aware that I'm lying?). Most have been these “little white lies” that seem harmless and innocent and really just serve to save face. Some have been indirect, lies that lead people to believe something other than the truth with some mild misdirection. And a f…

Mumford & Sons: The Music

I've been itching to blog about the Mumford & Sons concert, but it took a few days for all my thoughts to settle. At the end of the night, I honestly felt like I was a snow-globe that had just been shaken for the last three hours, complete with an aching back.

But I'm getting ahead of myself. This momentous event is getting two blog entries. One that is a strict review of the musical event, and the other a more in-depth analysis of my personal experience. These are my thoughts on the music/performances. The externals.


The first act was a-man called King Charles. I dislike his persona but quite enjoyed his sound. It's amazing what you can do with a guitar and a voice. His white pants were horribly scandalous and unattractively distracting (that video is not for the faint of heart, conservative and young readers). I'm mildly jealous of his hair, although I was annoyed when he flipped it in front of his face and sang behind it as if he were veiled.

"I paid money to …

Dear Life,

Please stop getting away from me. I just can't seem to get a handle on you. I need more time. More time to sleep, more time to think, and more time to write, specifically.

That is all I have time for before I fall asleep tonight. But it is not all that I'd like to say to you. You fascinate me and I have a lot of opinions about you. Most of them are probably wrong, but maybe if I had more time, we could talk them through.

Beth

Totally Worth It

Shout out to a couple friendships tonight, while I wait for Kings of Leon to play on Jimmy Fallon.*

Friendship #1 (and 1.5):
I actually meet Friend 1.5 first, but we're only casual acquaintances. I meet Friend 1 and take her for a coffee, thinking I probably won't meet her again...but then she moves to my city and becomes my coworker and before long, my friend. I drive 9 hours to go to her wedding (to Friend 1.5). She was the first person I cried about leaving behind in Vancouver. But then they end up moving to Ontario a few months later. New territory for them both. It is not much of a sacrifice to hop on a bus to the next town over for a dinner of eggplant parmesan, followed by a dessert of pumpkin ice cream, chocolate biscotti, and chai (all homemade!!!!!!!!!).

Hanging out tonight was hilarious. And encouraging. The best combination of worlds. I wish I'd just tape recorded the whole night. (Amelia and Varun can't help but being funny, and Amelia blogs about their inter…

Caring and Sharing is So Passé... (Round 20)

This week's post contains a few tidbits from last week, when I changed it up. It also includes a mild-cussword. I feel the need to disclaim this, which maybe is needless, but I opted to post it because it is used in the context of quoting a game show, with an almost-appropriate response for those who are opposed to swearing. (I do censor sometimes as I choose what things to put on the blog; there are conversations that don't make it. Of course, you also miss out on all the serious conversations we have, which are plentiful and balance out all this ridiculousness. Nadine is as thoughtful and loving as she is witty and sharp.)


(discussing this "news" article, a hypothetical future conversation with a hypothetical future child)
her: "Mommy, what's shit-faced?" "It's go to your room, that's what it is."


me: Ooh, an article on dating in Toronto! Did you write this one!?
her: It was years ago...(curls up in a ball)
me:(reading from the article)
he…

Grateful For Innocence

This is my most prized possession. A tiny New Testament given to my Grampie when he landed in England for training. It traveled through WWII with him. He didn't know Jesus at the time, but he read it, marked it up, studied it.

Last time I was home, Grampie told me more about his war experiences than I've ever heard him share. He doesn't like to talk about the war, which I've always understood (in theory). He has a collection of amusing anecdotes from his off-hours, and has shared a few vague generalities, but nothing concrete.

The two brief vignettes he shared were enough to shake me. It hit me, as I looked at the watery eyes of now-fragile man, that he has seen atrocities that would make me vomit. He had to kill or be killed. He saw death, more violently & more frequently than anyone else I know. His choice to be silent and to hold these memories within himself is a decision to protect those he loves. Because once you know something, you cannot un-know it.

Nearly ev…

Nannying Is Good For Me...

...because it is bad for my pride. 

Instances where arrogance has slapped me in the face:

1. Someone who knows me as a nanny asks what I studied in university. I say, "English Literature." They say, "Oh, and did you graduate?" I bite back my instinctive and indignant retort, "At the top of my class!"



2.With half an hour until I have to go get the boys for lunch, all the laundry is folded and I get a brief break. I love this treat. As I come downstairs to grab my computer, I catch an unpleasant whiff. Yes. That is precisely what I thought. The dog (usually outside, save for today's rain) has had an unfortunate series of accidents on the carpet.

I don't do doggy doo. I really don't do doggy diarrhea.

But I am amazed at what I'm capable of when I have no other options.



3. “Wait, you cook their dinners? And you do their laundry? I want a nanny...I have a bunny. We can have a bunny nanny.”

“You're not the boss of me! Only my mom and dad ca…

NaNoWriMo Update #2

photo by my lovely friend Jackie!

So, another update.

On Day 3, I killed it. I got sucked in and wrote for hours and made up for all the words I was behind.

But on Days 4-7, I wrote a total of maybe 150 words. Yup.

It is 8pm now - I was going to start writing at 2 this afternoon to make up for my NaNoWriMo neglect... I didn't come home until 5:30. I have not written a word, and I am about to turn on the TV for Extreme Makeover: Home Edition.


I give up.


Before you start freaking out, I have two qualifiers:

1. I am not going to stop writing my story, and I am going to continue making an intentional effort to work on it this month.

2. I will continue to write every day this month - on one thing or the other. Part of the reason I've not done any NaNoWriMo is that there are so many other things I want to write, and such a limited time to do it all in. I literally have a list of fifteen blog posts waiting to be written for this blog, plus daily entries on my Dear Stranger blog. Plus poems.


I…

The Morning Benders @ The Mod Club

I am the only person I know who listens to The Morning Benders (with the exception of Katie V, who accompanied me to last night's show and is now sold on their greatness). And after this post, all of you are going to check them out, okay?

I first heard of TMB through Fuel/Friends music blog, where I find out about most great indie bands. Although, I have to say, I feel pretty proud that I am beginning to find she writes about bands after I have heard of them! Win. Anyway, I first hear Excuses here. Shortly thereafter, I heard Promises through the KEXP Song of the Day Podcast (subscribe on iTunes; you won't regret it). When I realized that both songs were by the same band, I knew I needed to give them more attention.

Promises - I like the social commentary this video puts forth.


This summer, I happened to walk past The Big Chill and saw a sign saying Free Show With TMB - it was only a few days away, and I was thrilled. Even more thrilling was when Chris Chu (the band lead) retw…

Even From Afar (Round 19)

This week, a slight diversion from the regular format. Mostly because I was not a diligent scribe throughout the week. But still funny, and still true to Nadine's life with me.


Today, I'm minding my business at work, and get this text:

her: Eharmony is free all November. I dare you.... :)


So I respond:

me: I'm in. Also, I am not going to survive today. C is.... not listening well. Sigh.

her: Yuck. Three-hour timeout. That would be my call :)

me: The threat of losing a playdate is hardly working. And I WANT the playdate to happen.

her: There should be boarding school for toddlers.

me: I AM the boarding school equivalent.

her: Oh. Right. Note to self: hire a nanny when terrible twos/threes arrive.

me: I will, I think. At least part-time. Note to self - start saving for a nanny.

her: Last night The Boy threatened me with the idea of having ten boys. Um... I would pull out every strand of hair on my head. And then I would become a truck driver and leave him alone with the kids for days…

NaNoWriMo Update #1

Day 1 of NaNoWriMo: I wrote 2 pages. I was supposed to write 6.

Which means that I probably need to rethink my plan.

And get some immediate self-discipline.

(The idea of instant character growth reminds me of this song, played often on our cassette player.

Yes, my childhood was strange.)

On the upside, I do like the quality of what I've produced so far.

An Open Letter On October 31st

While nearly everyone in the (western) world is consumed with costumes and candy, I think about family on October 31st. Specifically, my mom.

No, she is not a witch. (Wouldn't it be crazy though, if I told you that I grew up in a home like this??) But she was born on Halloween. I won't get distracted by a long explanation of what our family "Halloween" traditions looked like, but they rarely (if ever) involved trick-or-treating, and while I may have pined for it as a child, I am quite content now with our unique family history.

I didn't give my mom a birthday card today. This is her card, which I am letting you all read.


Mom,

I've been thinking a lot about you in the past two months. As I spend my day with kids, I've been remembering what it was like to be a kid. And now that I am a primary caregiver, I feel like I get glimpses into what it might have been like for you to be my primary caregiver. Except that your job was tougher; you had four kids. Twenty-fo…

Love You. Bye.

There are two types of phone calls that I'm quite comfortable with:
a phone call with a clear purpose, a question to be answered and an agenda to accomplish.catching up with close friends and family if we haven't talked in awhile (a month or more).
Clearly, I am not really a phone person. It has to do with the ambiguity and uncertainty and the lack of visual cues to tell me when silence is awkward or if there is more conversation to be had...I just can't tell!

When I'm talking with my good friends and family, though, all conversations end the same way:

(quickly) Love you! Bye!Click.

It's habit to say I love you. A good habit, I think.


But I am constantly fearful that these words will jump over my tongue and out my lips before I can stop them, that before I can yell, NO, WAIT! I TAKE IT BACK! there will be the click of death, and I'll be left in silence, staring at a phone, realizing I inadvertently told a stranger or my boss or a male acquaintance something the…

This Week, Her Boy Adds His Wit (Round 18)

me: I should be invisible. (pause) Oh wait, I already am.
her: Just like Clay Aiken! (softly, crooning) I love Clay Aiken...

her: Computer; I like swearing sometimes. It's coming, just to warn you.

her: I've always believed that broken food has no calories.

me: That guy is a FOUNT of ideas!
her: A fount of childlabour!

me: I loved that movie. I thought he was dreamy.
her: I know. His EYEBALLS!

her: By eleven, the guys will all be buzzed and you'll look fine.

her boy: Just think of how much easier your life will be once your Facebook status is "in a relationship!"
her: Yeah! You should change it!
me: But I'm not dating anyone...
her: Fake it til you make it!

her: I didn't really have time to figure out if I liked him or not. He was just straightforward, and it happened.
her boy: Yes! Blitzkrieg dating!

(back-track here)

NaNoWriMo

Earlier this month, Jess suggested I take part in NaNoWriMo.

I laughed.
Then I thought about it for 12 hours and said, Sure!
Then I started recruiting other people to join. If I can do it, working 50 hours a week, so can you!

People have begun asking me, What's your plan?

Plan? I asked myself, I need a plan if I want to write a novel in a month?

So now I need a plan.*



*I at least have an idea for the story. I was telling Amelia last night that I haven't decided on what big crisis will kick-start everything, and she said, "I think she should be dying."


"No," I said, my nose wrinkled, "because then I already know how it ends."
"How?" she asked.
"She dies," I said, "obviously."
"Unless..." she suggested slowly, "it's Star Trek."


She looked startled, surprised by herself, "Oh my gosh. 2008 Amelia would never have even thought that."