Today was something of a bummer. I woke up feeling sick, after a week that included five photoshoots, three birthday parties, another halloween-ish party, a scrimmage, a league meeting, and a visit to the Goodwill Bins. I was supposed to have my first derby practice back with my team since going on leave, and I was also supposed to coach my first practice with one of the league's juniors teams.

Instead, I squeezed out what little code I could muster in the morning, and then laid around in my pajamas, half-watching Quantum Leap in a haze, and dictating e-mails and marketing copy into my phone when my head felt clear enugh.

But, my housemates put together an amazing meal for all of us to share, and all I had to do was schlep down the stairs to make myself a plate. We enjoyed one of the best TNG episodes (Darmok) and a bit of British Baking Show while we ate, and I wrapped myself in a blanket and it was totally relaxed and restful and nourishing. I'm full of ham and gratitude right now.

And, there was also an interesting development after Saturday scrimmage--my first time putting skates on in two months--when I blocked a newer jammer pretty extensively. A more naturally boastful person might say that I dominated her, heh.

I'm told that her kid was watching and decided to draw that scene. So, the new Meat is the fearful-looking jammer (depicted as a literal jar of jam), and I'm apparently that feisty-looking jar of peanut butter on wheels that's coming after her.

Seeing this made me laugh out loud and it might be one of the better sports-related compliments I've ever gotten. ;)

WELL, there went an entire month. Yeesh! And my brain meats are all kinds of crazy today, so this will likely be super-random and disjointed, heh.

Had a pretty huge month income-wise, and landed a couple of big projects. Enough so that I may get the new laptop that I've been wanting for a while. Of course, there's another part of my brain that's saying, "maybe you should save up for the wedding, dummy." But, the wedding is not a business expense (heh), and my laptop is getting increasingly old and slow, so eh, we'll see. Advice has been to wait for the next Macbook Pro update to be released, so I'll likely sit on the decision for at least a bit longer, anyway. :)

Speaking of wedding, September 2017 is the target zone for that. Yes, it's a ways off, but you know who has two thumbs and is not in a hurry? THIS GIRL. My goals are Simple, Fun, and Low-Stress, and having a longer timeline will be good for that on all fronts. Saving up is a big thing, because I've been very intentional about keeping my personal debts down, and I have *zero* business debt, and I am certainly NOT going to change any of that for this ridiculous wedding thing. I do currently have enough saved up to go dress shopping at some point, but I suppose that'd also involve things like deciding who my bridesmaid(s) will be. And I am having THE WORST time with that, largely because I hesitate to saddle any of my friends with the obligation, heh. I am ridiculous. How do people decide these things, anyway?

I've been going to the gym a lot, and now The Joe will be able to join me--he just finished the Foundations course, so we're going to go together today for his first normal class. It's possible that I'll lift heavier weights than he does, but I've also had a year-or-so head start on barbell stuff, and did bodyweight strength training for years prior to that, so that seems fair. ;) But, he also actually enjoys distance running, while I merely tolerate it. Basically, he's the cardio hamster, and I'm the 'squatch who likes to throw boulders around, heh.

Related: it's pretty great to be with a dude who feels proud of my physical prowess strength, rather than intimidated or threatened by it. :)

Derby-wise, I have both a TT Alumni bout and tournament this month, which is exciting, but also rather inconvenient, because I've been trying to rest my body from skating more than usual. I have a knot of muscles in my back that refuses to loosen up, and it's gotten to be pretty disconcerting. I've been reading up on things and talking about it with some of my sports-doing compatriots, and it sounds like it might be due to my glute medius not firing consistently, which definitely tracks with how my hips are structured. BUT, for now, I get to wait for a doctor's appointment next week to get some answers and/or referrals.

Summer traditions are pleasant and plentiful, thus far. 4th of July was full of flames, food, and friendship. Did my annual Oregon Brewfest lady-date with [ profile] marykae and tried some very good beers and also some really weird ones. (much to my surprise, Mint beer was the Meh experience, while Pesto beer was actually pretty good?!) Gourmet-Q looms on the horizon, and I have no idea what to make, but it's always a fun afternoon regardless.

And, new things: veggie gardening has been decently successful, aside from a few stupid cabbage worms. Strawberries are thriving, I got to harvest a few poblano and sweet peppers and string beans, bell peppers are coming along, the basil is practically exploding, and the first round of grape tomatoes is crazy-delicious. Not bad, for somebody whose gardening knowledge lives entirely on Google, heh.

The new Ghostbusters movie was really fun. Folks who said it was "written by checklist" weren't exactly wrong, but the cast and chemistry was great, and the movie was genuinely funny. The new Star Trek made me very happy, and it actually managed to be all action-packed for the newbies, while still feeling like it had some of the soul of the original series. They could've done more with Idris Elba, but overall it made me pretty hopeful about the new TV series in 2017.

Anyhoo, that's all that's coming out of the brain meats at the moment, so it's back to the grind.
batskeets: (yan!)
Thing I wrote on Thanksgiving, but neglected to post here:

I have to admit: being thankful felt a little bit trite, when I got up this morning. Things have been particularly hard as of recent, and perspective has been a tricky thing to grab hold of.

I went running this morning, as I have each Thanksgiving morning since 2010. I even got to hear Flash (by Queen, naturally) during that 5K of pavement pounding. I’m thankful that my legs work. A few weeks ago, I couldn’t have gone on that run.

I am thankful that I’ll have a house full of friends in an hour or so. In some cases, it will be our 5th year spending it together. But, whether it's your 5th year at my table, or your first, I'm thankful for the new connections I've made this year. And, jesus, am I thankful for the old friendships.

I’m thankful for teammates who challenge me, encourage me, and are patient with me when the chips are down. I don't think I've been the best teammate, but I hope y'all know what I feel, even when I'm not so great at expressing it.

Later today, I’ll talk to my parents, through the internet, for free, even though they’re in Taiwan, half a world and many time zones away. Yeah, so it's technically Friday there, but that’s still pretty amazing. (SIDE NOTE: Skype decided to be a jerk and not allow me to sign on. But, the fact that this technology exists remains awesome)

I called my grandpa's house, a bit ago. If you’ve talked with me recently, you know why that’s an extra-big thing to be thankful for.

I'm thankful that I still have the ability to see the little things, to experience the simple moments, and find wonder in them. Not everything has to be grandiose and life-altering in order to be worth savoring.

I’m thankful that, when terrible things happen, we don’t have to go through them alone.

...oh. And lard. I'm also thankful for lard. ;)


Feb. 8th, 2014 09:28 pm

Yep, we've been snowed in since Thursday. I worked from home on Thursday, and the photoshoot and bouts I had on Friday and Saturday were postponed, so other than the trip to the store I made earlier today, we've been turtling. Yesterday and today were spent playing a lot of Civilization V, doing a bit of cooking, watching movies, and enjoying the fact that I have absolutely nowhere to be.

I got it in my head earlier today to get groceries at the Hawthorne New Seasons, and after maybe 60 seconds of driving in the snow, I said Eff This and went to the much-closer Fred Meyer on 82nd. Which, as it happens, was completely out of eggs--I had to buy Egg Beaters to use for breakfast tomorrow.

There was a karaoke birthday party this evening, but the sky has shifted from snow to freezing rain, which makes me say HELLS NO to driving. I was going to be training for a new part-time job tomorrow, but it seems that's postponed, too. No idea if Oaks will be open for endurance tomorrow, either. So, it might be another day in.

I have to admit that I enjoy the snow. Not just because of the built-in excuse to not go anywhere, but because it's so calm and quiet everywhere. Empty streets, muffled sounds, a landscape that looks strangely monochrome, there's nothing but the occasional gust of wind and the soft crunching of snow under your boots. It's rare that you get to have a moment as mellow as that.

Snowy weather also means: RIDICULOUS SCARF-HAT TIME. And that always requires some muppetface. ;)


Hello, 2014

Jan. 1st, 2014 10:53 pm

I wrote a year-in-review for my business blog (of course). I don't think I have enough sleep under my belt to do one for my personal life, but maybe soon? I have some gnarly deadlines to kill these next few days, so I guess we'll see if time cooperates. ;)

Christmas was strange, because it didn't involve my annual pilgrimage to California to see my folks--long story short, no plans came together, and my dad also got stuck with the holiday duty shift this year, when he usually has that time off. Throw in a big photoshoot and a few large projects with aggressive timelines on my end, and everything basically converged in a way that made this Not A Good Year To Travel For The Holiday.

On the plus side, I did at least get a visit from my parents over Thanksgiving, which hasn't happened in a few years. AND, I got to spend the entire Christmas day with my sweetie, which we hadn't ever done before. His folks welcomed me over for Christmas dinner, and everything was pretty chill, overall. As much of a bummer as it was to hear that my family wasn't all getting together this year, at least I got to hug my Joe in-person, instead of texting him a "Merry Christmas" from 1000-or-so miles away. <3

The New Year came in as it tends to: with friends, drinks, and conversation. Last night, I had our partygoers write down things they wanted to leave behind in 2013, and then burn them in our backyard fire pit. I actually had to think pretty hard about what to write down for myself, which honestly puts things in perspective for me. Last year was challenging as all-get-out, but I can't say that it was BAD in any way. Certainly not in ways that weren't solvable.

So, the things I killed with fire last night and will leave behind in 2013:

  • struggling for money

  • getting in the way of my own success

  • not seeing enough of the people I care about

  • basic bitches -- as in, people who try to tear down others who choose a path that's different from their common, standard norm.

I suppose that begs the question: What AM I going to do in 2014?

  • Well, I'm going to make hella money doing good work for awesome people. (yes, I actually said "hella money." Come at me!)

  • I'm going to say Yes to more of the right things. (especially time with people who matter)

  • I'm going to say No to more things that don't serve me emotionally, financially, or creatively. (I've already quit a board position that was an aggravating time suck. Woo!)

  • I'm going to take good care of myself and my health, so I can be more awesome both for myself, and for the people around me.

  • I've already been spending more time reading for fun, as of recent, and am definitely going to keep guarding that bit of Me Time.

  • I'm going to try out for (gulp) Travel Team. I don't expect to make it, but in the unlikely event that I do make it, I reserve the right to scale it back or quit, if it's driving me crazy.

  • I'm going to make a home just for myself and Joe, because y'know? It's time. I love him even more after living together for a year. It's only going to get better from here.

  • I'm going to take photos of amazing people who love their bodies for what they can do. (y'know, instead of sad sacks with 2% body fat who think the only point of exercise is to look good in a bikini)

  • I'm going to keep growing, learning, and making the things I do better. I think I can keep doing that. ;)

And, in conclusion: THIS GUY RIGHT HERE. I couldn't ask for a more delightful intrepid journalist to have along on my quasi-heroic ride. He's more than capable of rescuing himself from a bad situation, granted, but he certainly has the better legs, out of the two of us. ;)


batskeets: (yan!)
SO. As I briefly mentioned the other day, Joe and I have been looking at apartments. Not as many as we'd have liked, but as many as our respective insane work schedules allowed for. And, as I alluded to, it was a really annoying process. Most of the places we looked at ranged from Just Okay to Completely Underwhelming. A couple of places were nice, but not nice enough for what they were charging--especially after we heard that one of those really-nice remodeled places was in a very sketchy neighborhood. As in, bullet-hole-through-your-window sketchy. And the hallway also smelled funny. They want $1400/mo for that? Uhhhh, no.

One place was actually fairly terrific--really spacious, pretty close-in, located in a decent, quiet neighborhood, and very affordable. But, we got talked out of that one by the owner and the property manager, who were both asking questions that got invasive to the point of being fairly creepy. And they flat-out said that they would rather rent to a couple than to a pair of friends, which, HAY GUYZ, that's against discrimination laws in Oregon.

AND, the manager also ASKED ME IF I WAS PREGNANT. She blamed it on the fact that I was wearing my big winter coat and a long, poofy scarf, but come ON. When is "are you pregnant?" ever, EVER an okay question to ask a person you've just met? In this context, it was just even more weird, invasive, and unsettling.

Anyhoo, when we came down to it, we didn't see any places that we liked that much--we liked some of them well enough, but not as much as the Castle. I've certainly enjoyed living at the Castle, and it's a ridiculous-cheap deal for the quality of the space. It's also reasonably close to the Hangar, which a NoPo place wouldn't be. And, the vibe transitions seamlessly when Joe is over, and [ profile] dakania and [ profile] daemonwise are both home, too. It's like Joe has always been there--and, granted, he's around a lot, but it's like he's supposed to be part of the gang. IT IS FATED.

The only real issue Joe or I have with the place is the commute, but not having to commute between deep-SE and NoPo in order to see each other would certainly make both our lives easier. And, well, the schmoopy reasons of wanting to have a place of our own. Still, looking at the pros and cons, and crunching the numbers, him moving in at The Castle seems like the most responsible option. Responsible is generally far from romantic, but you know what? I'll be happy to be sharing my home with him, no matter where that ends up being. (well, maybe not in a studio apartment, heh. DEFINITELY not a studio apartment.)

So, we're going to make good with the fact that I live in a pretty sweet house that doesn't cost very much, even if it is a bit further away from downtown than we'd like. If we find a place for just-us later, that's great, but right now, this is good.

He'll be moving in on March 1st. And, in true Castle Coronary tradition, we're already batting around plans for a tempura and sushi party to celebrate. Mohohoho. ;)
Both [ profile] daemonwise and I have been idly pondering having a cute, furry animal in the house, even though we're both too busy to own our own dog. Still, it's hard not to think about it, because d'aaaawww.

I've also helped Alyson out with some of her work with local animal shelters, and because she's super-involved with them, she posts links to shelter pets looking for a home All. The. TIME.

Example? These little guys. Their names? Are SKEETER and GIZMO. It's like the universe is practically throwing them at me, people.

The universe is mean, y'all. Just sayin'.
No matter how much shorting yourself on sleep, going to a large-scale convention- or sporting-type event, and then drinking a bunch of alcohol sounds like a good plan for keeping your immune system strong, it's really not a good plan at all.

Fortunately, I already have a ton of food ready to eat, and I have nowhere to be tonight or tomorrow morning. YES. (well, I would go to speed skating class, but eh, I'm obviously in no condition for that) I think it's Tea and Netflix time up in here.

Anyhoo, I did make the trek down to Eugene last weekend, I played in open co-ed scrimmage, I got to sternum-bust the hell out of a dude from Northern CA, and watch a lot of derby. AND, then I got to visit with friends I haven't seen in way too long. So, yes, worth the trouble, I think, even if my sore throat is trying its best to convince me otherwise.

Otherwise? Things are good. I'm really loving my living situation, and even Joe is already noticeably more relaxed and interested in hanging out at my place. I actually had enough free time yesterday, after getting back and doing a headshot session, to play a bit of Dragon Age and Castle Crashers. [ profile] daemonwise threw down dinner for the lot of us, and left [ profile] dakania with a healthy supply of pot roast juices and drippings to make something else with, over this coming week. Yep, it's definitely a home.

Anyhoo, I'm going to go be a loaf and hopefully shake off this crud by morning.
I'm about ten kinds of exhausted, after sorting through and hauling my stuff from the old place to the new one, over the past 3.5 days.  I remember when I used to feel like this more days than not. How the hell did I ever function like this? Fortunately, I'm being nicer to myself nowadays.

The new place is shaping up really nicely, our internet is hooked up, cooking in the kitchen feels like a breath of fresh air, and I sleep better at night. This is going to be a place for good times, and also a place to feel relaxed and groovy, and at-home.

Jeebus willing, I'll have the last of my things out of the old place tomorrow morning, and then it's just figuring out the buyout terms. I feel like a massive weight has already been lifted. Hells yes.

Maybe in a year or three, I'll buy a new house, one that fits what my life is becoming. But for now? This is pretty damned fantastic.

March 2017

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