Recap

28 05 2009

First off I would like to thank everyone for their kind comments and emails last week.  I really appreciated them all.  This has been a very difficult two weeks for me but I think I’m doing much better now… more at peace.  “The universe tends to unfold as it should.”  Not the context that line was originally intended for but I think the idea applies.

Reading

It’s been a while since I posted a book review.  I finished Crystal Singer by Anne McCaffrey.  I had trouble wanting to write a review for it since it was so… meh.  It wasn’t bad but there were few redeeming qualities.  It reads much like the other science fiction from the 80’s (it was first published in 1985) so if you like Asimov, Niven, and Bradburry you’ll probably like this.  I just find the writing a little stiff and I really don’t like the main character… or any of the characters for that matter.

I also never posted a review of Accidental Werewolf… for similar reasons.  It barely qualifies as brain popcorn and I didn’t even enjoy the book until the last 50 pages or so.  Quite frankly I’m amazed I made it to the end. 

I’m currently reading Revelation Space by Alastair Reynolds.  I like it so far but it’s very technical and I’m struggling to have the mental capacity to keep up with the book (though that says more about my mental state than the book!).  I’m going to try and stick with it… I think it’s going to be an interesting story, it’s just going to take me a while to finish.

Movies

I’ve seen several movies lately.  Star Trek, X-Men Origins: Wolverine, Terminator Salvation.  I didn’t see any point in reviewing them… if you’re a fan of each of the respective series you’ll go see the movie no matter what I or any real critic says.  I will say this for each of them.  If you are a fan, you’ll love the movies.  If you’re not a fan you’ll probably enjoy it anyway.  Each of the movies was very well done!

Writing

I’ve run out of steam with the creative writing.  I don’t plan on giving it up permanently but I’ve got a lot of projects on my plate at the moment and that has fallen to the bottom of the list.  I will probably keep writing something for the Saucy Writing prompts since I really enjoy that.  It’s a great creative stretch for the imagination.

TSIFL

The last two weeks have been abysmal for me.  Holidays always put a kink in my diet/exercise plans (as does a bout with depression).  I kind of had an epiphany this weekend… If I don’t change my behavior, nothing will change.  That’s the definition of insanity; doing the same thing and expecting different results.  This doesn’t benefit anyone except me and doesn’t hurt anyone except me.  I know that’s kind of a “Duh” kind of thing, but knowing and truly accepting are two completely different things. 

From here on out, exercise is not an option.  I don’t really care what I do, I just can’t allow my self to sit around and do nothing.  I’m also going to continue with my eating goals but with an incentive.  I will only allow myself Sunday off if I do well during the week.  If I haven’t done well then I’ve already had my day off and I don’t need another.  We usually hang out with friends on Sundays so that should be a good motivator to keep me on track.

I think that’s all I’ve got for today.  Hope everyone is having a good week and remember, tomorrow is Friday!





The Waiting Game

21 05 2009

Note: You’re pretty much getting stream-of-consciousness today so it won’t be as polished as usual.

I debated wether to post about this or not.  There’s several thing holding me back.  1) I’m not alone and I’m not unique… I don’t want to sound whiny when I’m certianly not the only one going through the same thing and there are women out there who have it much worse than me.  2) It’s kind of personal… I’m not sure I want this out there on the interwebs.  Tami and Bre and Brad have all been very supportive but I’m still just waiting for that forum troll having a bad day to come along and flame me horribly leaving my already fragile emotions in a quivering blob on the floor (I know, it’s probably an unreasonable fear.  I’ve never been flamed, had a few rude commenters but nothing that I would consider malicious)  3) I’m not sure anyone cares.

I rolled that around in my head a little this morning and decided that it was all crap.  If I want to whine, I’m going to whine.  Screw you if you don’t like it.  I feel disengenuous if I don’t share what’s going on in my life.  I don’t feel the need to share EVERYTHING, but this is what occupies 85% of my mental processes every day… that’s a big chunk.  I also think if I get it off my chest I’ll feel better.  Lastly, I don’t care if  you don’t care.

Ok, I just re-read what I’ve written… I think this is going to be anti-climactic… That’s a lot of build up.  I think I just need to get down to it and stop with the qualifiers.

As I’ve alluded to before, I want a baby.  Want it so bad I can’t hardly stand it.  On top of that I’m surrounded by pregnant women.  About 5 of the women I listed in that post have had their kiddos and I’ve added 4 more pregnant women since then.  All I hear about are the trials and tribulations of being pregnant.  I’ve noticed very few women have positive things to say about pregnancy but they all love it anyway.  Somehow this doesn’t deterr me in the slightest.

Anywhoo, I’ve decided that this whole thing is one big waiting game.  When you are trying to get pregnant, first you wait to ovulate, for me that’s about 3 weeks.  Then once that hapens, you’ve done everything you can and you have to wait to find out if you’re pregnant or not, about 2 weeks.  If you’re not pregnant you start over again.  If you are then you get a blood test from the Dr to confirm the home test, probably not more than a couple of days.  Then, if you’re lucky you get to wait for a dopler at 8 weeks which would be about 4 weeks from when you find out if you’re pregnant, if you’re not luck you have to wait 12 weeks (about 8 weeks from when you find out) for your first ultrasound.  At this point it’s going to be a little different for every woman, but basically you’re waiting for about 24 weeks when the baby could potentially survive if it were born, then you wait until 37 weeks when it would be fine if it were born, then you wait for delivery at around 40-ish weeks.

It’s a helluva lot of hurry-up-and-wait.  I’m still in that first part… and it’s brutal.  You’ve done everything you can and you get to the end of your cycle and [insert euphemism for your period here] comes… you feel like a failure.  You wonder “what is wrong with me that I can’t do what my body was built to do.”  Then that puts more stress on you which in turn can make it harder to concieve.

I just feel really worn down.  I’m trying really hard to stay positive but even then I’m not sure that’s a good idea.  I’m just setting myself up for more disapointment.

I’m trying to work my way to a point here and failing.  I guess I’m not sure I have one.  Just needed to get some of that off my chest.  I don’t really have many people I can talk to about this.  I feel bad talking to my pregnant friends about it because I don’t want them to feel guilty or avoid talking about their pregnancies with me.  I sincerely want to share in their joy, I’m not one of those bitter women who begrudge them their happiness.  Sometimes I think The Hubby gets tired of hearing about it too.  He wants a baby too but I don’t want to put any additional stress on him… our chances of conception go up if he’s under minimal stress. 

Anywhoo, I think I’m going to close here (Bre I hope I haven’t scared you off, the copious amounts of unprotected sex really is fun!)  I’ve kind of wound down… I think I’m done complaining 🙂

Edit: I took the ticker down as it has expired, if you would like one for TTC, pregnancy, or just about any other type of countdown go to lilypie.com





Book Review: Undead and Unemployed

18 05 2009

Undead and UnemployedThis is the second book in a series (link to review of the first book at the botom). 

Synopsis from the Back Cover: Nothing can make Betsy Taylor give up her shoe fettish – even dying and rising as the new Queen of the Vampires.  Being royalty isn’t all it’s cracked up to be – there are still bills to be paid.  And Betsy is determined to live as normally as possible, even if it means getting a job.  A “feet” she accomplishes with panache, landing her a dream job selling designer shoes at Macy’s.

Things couldn’t be better – except her new friends, who keep pestering her wile she’s on the clock.  As if she has time to socalize when there are deliciously sinful shoes to try on – and buy at discount.  It seems that vampires are being murdered in St. Paul, and they’re all clamoring for Betsy to do something about it.  The worst part is she’s going to ahve to enlist the help of the one vamp who makes her blood boil: the oh-so-sexy Sinclair.  Now, she’s really treading on dangerous ground – high heels and all…

I liked this second book MUCH more than the first.  Betsy is still just as ditsy, flaky, and whiny but at least she’s consistent.  No abrupt personality changes this time!  The other characters are more likeable this time too, Sinclair isn’t quite so stuck-up, and Tina isn’t quite so childish.  Mark and Jessica play smaller parts in this book, but they continue to be Betsy’s cheerleaders.

The plotting is much better; no slump in the middle.  The story progresses nicely with a predictable but enjoyable plot twist at the end.  There’s a little more tension in this book, there’s a mystery to solve and a little more danger for Betsy. 

Summary

I still rate this as “brain popcorn” but the character and plot flaws aren’t distracting for this book like they were in the first.  I’m going to up this to a solid 3.5 *’s, not quite enough to get 4 but still an enjoyable read!

Book 1: Undead and Unwed





Progress Report

17 05 2009

This week I started strong and finished weak.  Emotionally this week was tough for me and I just kind of sputtered out.  Not an excuse, but that’s why it hapened.

Last Week’s Goals

Exercise

  • Wii Fit or walk the dog for 30 mins 4 days/week – I did Monday and Wednesday but skipped Thursday with the intention of making it up on Saturday.  Friday The Hubby surprised me with a date night and we got home too late.  Then Saturday and Sunday were way too busy for me to do my make up.  This just shows me that I really shouldn’t put the exercise off because the weekends are much busier than my week days.

Food

  • No Fast Food or Vending Machine – Success!  I didn’t have either except for on Sunday which is my day off from everything so that didn’t count 🙂
  • Record everything I eat – I did good through Thursday.  No good excuse, I really need to keep up with that so I can see where my calories are going and where I can cut back.
  • 5 Fruits/Veggies per day – Horrible!  I think I managed 2 maybe 3 per day.  I’m going to bring some carrot sticks for snacks up to the office this week and make sure I bring at least one piece of fruit to work every day and eat it with lunch

This Week’s Goals

Exercise

  • Wii Fit or walk the dog 4 days/week – This week I’m going to specify Mon, Wed, Thur, Fri.  If I get home early enough I’ll do Tues to allow Fri off.

Food

  • No fast food or vending machine
  • Record everything I eat
  • 5 Fruits/Veggies per day
  • Only one non-water drink per day – I noticed that I give a lot of calories up each day to sodas and juice.  Seems kind of silly to me.  In order to make this a little easier, I’m not going to limit my self to just water but allow my self any beverage that’s calorie free.  Anything that has calories I will only get 1 serving per day.

Here’s to each week being better than the one before!





Webcomics

15 05 2009

Sorry this is late… I’ve had a busy week.

Today I thought I might share with you, my readers, the webcomics that I enjoy reading.  I’m not a big fan of print comics or graphic novels (maybe I would be, I probably haven’t given them a fair shake, but I really don’t need anything else to spend money on) but I’ve been reading webcomics for years. 

So I don’t have to explain each time, the text in italics is from the site’s About page, the regular text is me.

Without Further Ado:

Anders Loves Maria (some strips are NSFW or children) – Anders Loves Maria is not a story for the casual reader. It has a simple beginning-middle-end structure but it does jump between the past and present quite frequently so a little effort on the readers part is needed to understand what is going on.  Even though the story is essentially about the relationship of Anders and Maria, most of it takes place outside of the context of this relationship.  It is a story about “adulthood” in a modern age where coming-of-age seems to be completely arbitrary. 

It’s sexy and raunchy… everything the modern 20-something seems to be.  There’s a lot of complicated relationships and a baby on the way.  I’ve really enjoyed reading this strip, it’s very well written and drawn.  You do need to start from the begining, it won’t make any sense starting in the middle.  If what’s going on confuses you, go read the forums the confusing parts and important details are discussed.

Evil, Inc. – Evil Inc is a company, founded by Evil Atom, that provides good and services to the super-villain community. Many, but not all of the employees are super-villains themselves.

It’s cute and funny, a plesant twist on the super-hero comic.  You’ll probably understand better if you start from the begining, but the Story page has a nice recap of the major story arcs to catch you up.

FChords – This comic is currently on hiatus but the author mentioned recently that it will be returning shortly.  This one is about a couple of guys right here in good ‘ole Austin, TX who are trying to make it in the local music scene.  Being from Austin it feels very nostalgic for me, but I think the jokes will still be funny if you don’t know anything about Austin.  The archive of strips is relatively short and could probably be read in a sitting or two. 

Least I Could Do (sometimes NSFW) – LICD is about the antics of one Rayne Summers.  He’s an over sexed ego maniac with a penchant for getting into unbelieveable situations.  The earlier part of the strip is mostly about Rayne’s sexual expliots, now it’s more focused on the crazy stuff he does (he recently bought a newspaper).  The story arcs involving his niece are very cute.  The Sunday strip is always a flashback to Rayne’s childhood, they are always hilarious!  You could probably jump in in the middle but the inside jokes will be funnier if you go back to the begining (“… and then I bought the horse a prostitute!”). 

Misery Loves Sherman A web comic strip, a boy, and some aliens.  Anyone who was picked on by an older (or younger) sibling will enjoy this strip.  It’s harsh and funny look at all the things that we experienced in childhood that have made us the disfunctional people we are today.

PvP – This comic is about the antics of the staff for a gaming magazine.  I think that even if you’re not a gamer you would still find most of this very funny.  You could pick it up in the middle, but some of the earlier stuff is so funny I have to recommend you start from the begining.

StarslipIt is a new era. In the 35th Century after the Crisis, Earth leads an alliance of planets on a mission to explore the Quadrangle, an unknown region of space that may hold the secret to restoring a former empire.  The crew of the Paradigm may be unorthodox, but they’ve come through the Crisis as heroes. Will Vanderbeam’s new role as captain help him forget Princess Jovia, the object of desire that the Crisis killed?  Oh! Also, Starslip is a comedy. Get laughin’. 

The premise of the Starslip drive is very clever!  I won’t give it away since explaining it is an earlier story arc.  Vanderbeam is hilariously incompetent and his crew do the best they can to pick up the slack.  If you don’t want to start from the begining the New Readers section has a brief recap.
Enjoy!





Book Review: Dead and Gone

15 05 2009

Spoiler Warning:  This is the 9th book in a series.  If you haven’t read the first 8 I will probably say something that will be a spoiler for one of those books.  I won’t give any spoliers for this book, but I can’t make any promises for the previous 8.

dead-and-gone-cover1Synopsis (from the Product Description): Except for Sookie Stackhouse, folks in Bon Temps, Louisiana, know little about vamps—and nothing about weres.

Until now. The weres and shifters have finally decided to reveal their existence to the ordinary world. At first all goes well. Then the mutilated body of a were-panther is found near the bar where Sookie works—and she feels compelled to discover who, human or otherwise, did it.

But there’s a far greater danger threatening Bon Temps. A race of unhuman beings—older, more powerful, and more secretive than vampires or werewolves—is preparing for war. And Sookie finds herself an all-too human pawn in their battle.

I’ve been waiting for this book for a while.  I think I squee’ed out loud when I found the package in my mail box.  Then I got about 3/4 through the book that night and finished it up the next morning.

Let me just start by saying I ❤ Eric.  The HBO show is starting their 2nd season in June and I sincerely hope they make Eric sexier… he just didn’t cut it last season.

This book is back to the usual format with one big mystery to solve and all the smaller plot lines converge together at the end (as opposed to book 8 which was 3 little unrelated stories).  As usual Harris writes a wonderful story that draws you in and the action is almost non-stop. 

Sookie goes through some stuff in this book that I really think will change her.  I think it will be like the Debbie Pelt incident, it’s one of those things you just can’t experience without lasting effects.  We also see some changes in Eric… something of his softer side (though I predict even his “softer side” will never be enough for Sookie, we’ll have to see).

I’m having a toough time writing this without giving too much away for those of you who haven’t read it.  I think I’ll just stop here and say I thoroughly enjoyed it!!  It’s up to par with the previous books in the series.  If you haven’t read them, go start from book one, Dead until Dark, it’s a great read!!  (I will say that if 9 books is a little daunting, all the books are written to be stand-alone’s so you could just pick this one up.  However some of it will be a little cryptic as there’s quite a bit of back story)

Summary

Easily 5 *’s, like all the other books in this series.  They’re books that I will read, and have read, several times.  Fabulous reading; I can’t get enough!





New Story

13 05 2009

It’s a little late, but I’ve posted a new story.  This is for the May writing prompt from the Saucy Wenches.  It’s also the opening for something I’d like to make into a web serial.  I’m going to write a few installments and if I like the characters and can think of something interesting for them, I’ll continue.  It has no title yet as I don’t have any real plot thougth out yet, just an opening and some of the vampire mythology.

Erik and Sandra – Part 1