the view from Sunday: a fine day to go to the Fair

The Fair is back! Though I no longer feel blissfully ignorant enough to ride any of the rides (when you’ve seen them being constructed, it kind of turns you off for life), it’s become a tradition between me and the boy (plus, there’s so much county drama surrounding where it will resettle in years to come, that I might as well enjoy it while it still looks like the place I remember).

There were lots of lovely fluffy creatures to pet and feed in the petting zoo. Nibbly baby alpacas are the sweetest, while little American bison have the most expressive eyes.

more food than I care to admit.

Some fine feathered friends strutting their stuff.

Bunnies!

And unicorns.

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in which the shit hits the fan (almost literally)

The day was good… until disaster struck. Now, there’s a hole in my bedroom wall and a (possibly) ill-fitting ac unit in my future. I suspected something was going to go wrong re:  AC unit replacement, I just didn’t think it would be this bad. Wish I’d shelled out the cash for it myself, but didn’t want to spend so much when it’s more of a rental owner thing. So it goes. Waiting to see whether or not I will have a hole in the wall for days to come. Fingers crossed.

On the bright side, I wrote a lot. Not quite where I wanted to be (disaster struck while the going was getting good), but not bad for a day’s work.

the view from Sunday: I’m melting

Friends, it’s hot. Summer in the city hot.

Spring has only just arrived and it already feels like the beginning of summer. No clouds, no breezes, no relief in sight… and the ac in my bedroom broke down about two weeks ago in a dramatic last hurrah. In other words, I may or may not be writing this while wearing minimal amounts of clothing.

In a desperate effort to cool down, I resorted to ice cream… not once, but three times this weekend. This is a sign of serious indulgence, as 1) I am somewhat lactose intolerant, 2) I’m a cheapskate and generally refuse to spend more for a cup than it costs to buy a pint, 3) it means the boy also indulged in three days worth of ice cream outings.

It is hot.

I leave you with guava ice cream in a cup, because I’m a no cone kind of girl.

2015 in books – a quarterly review of bookish adventures

I’ve read 15 books since January, so I’m well on my way to beating last year’s goal of 30. I’ve also been reviewing for a library-related publication, so my non-fiction reading has increased (and lead to some unlikely gems in the process). There’s a difference between the kind of reading I do for pleasure vs. reading to write a review, but here are some of the best I’ve read so far.

A Tale for the Time Being by Ruth Ozeki

My first book of the new year and it was perfect. Thought-provoking, genre-bending, and a pleasure to read.

A Solemn Pleasure by Melissa Pritchard

Currently in prepub (out May 2015), this collection of essays on subjects as diverse as aging, writing, spirituality, death, dachshunds, and more was just what I needed to get over myself.

Sex Criminals, vol. 1 by Matt Fraction and Chip Zdarsky

If you choose to check this graphic novel out from the library (as I did), you will get funny looks. They’re worth it.

 

Meanwhile, I’m reading Twee by Marc Spitz and the final installment in Gail Carriger’s Finishing School series, Waistcoats & Weaponry, both from the library (which means my effort to get through the TBR pile is just as poor as it was in 2014). Twee is my downtime at work book (for those moments when I need to refresh), while W&W is keeping me sane between writing sessions.

For a complete list, visit my LibraryThing.

the view from Sunday, sofas and self-doubt

It’s been one of my darker weeks. I don’t often talk about my less-than-chipper days, but I have them and they usually turn into day*s*. I try not to linger on the doubts, but there are times when I’m prone to melancholy (sounds so much more refined than depression); it makes me wonder why I bother doing any of the things I do. Why should I write? Why should I even bother? Wouldn’t I be happier, freer, more at ease if I just let go and enjoyed the moment without driving myself to sit at a computer, pounding away at keys, knowing there’s a very good chance it will amount to nothing in the end? I try not to feel this way, but some days I let it happen and let go. I haven’t written in days; I tell myself it’s because I’m stuck, that the scene is not right, that I need to step back and do some plotting, but I know it’s because I don’t have the energy to be bothered. I’m tired, physically and mentally. I’ve been disappointed, and have let that disappointment color my outlook. Some days, I just want to let my thoughts go and think about nothing. I know this feeling will pass, and I will come back to the page, ready to start over, but it’s hard to look beyond the next day, let alone the next week, and see something good come of it.

It’s Sunday, so I will share a few of the things that have made me smile this weekend, and hope that better days are on their way.

It’s been a rainy, overcast day. Just the sort of day for staying indoors and enjoying some alone time while rearranging the living room (because…).

After 2 years, I finally upgraded from side chairs to a sofa! I went with a grey Klippan; it’s comfy and just the right for two (+1 demanding kitty). My home once again smells like Ikea–wood and vanilla candles (it’s a scent I will always associate with moving in to this place).

I bought pink washi tape while couch shopping, so today I posted up some instagram prints that had been sitting in a box for over a year. It’s held up for a few hours, will see if the humidity doesn’t win out and make the tape lose its hold.

the view from Sunday, the second

I cleaned. I shopped. I bought a clock.

I accomplished more than I expected and indulged in more than was strictly necessary. Didymus did not approve of my vacuuming, but he did enjoy lounging on my bed. Target sucked me in with Clearance sales (I fell off the no-impulse-buying wagon, hard), but the clock is pretty awesome and has a barometer that really words.

in flux

I’m in a weird in-between state. My trip was cancelled at the last minute (just as I finished getting my things ready), so what was supposed to be a week away has turned into an ordinary week after all… except, I wasn’t planning on being here, so none of the things I usually do in preparation for the week got done. I didn’t do groceries. I didn’t prepare to edit. I didn’t even fill the gas tank. All day I’ve been out of sorts because I am completely ill-prepared to get things done. I spent the morning just trying to fill in the gaps in my work schedule, since the desk schedule was worked out based on my not being around to handle reference questions. Suddenly, meetings are back on my calendar, and I have no idea what I’m supposed to be doing. It’s a strange feeling, like coming back from a vacation… except not.

I picked up a few essentials this morning, just enough to get by, and read over the chapter I was working on last week to get back in the groove. Really hoping that tomorrow finds me settling back into my usual rhythm.

the view from Sunday… the first

I’m trying to be more creative and self-reflective this year, so here’s the first of many Sunday photo journals to come…

sunday photos

I’m flying to Austin for a conference on Tuesday; I’m trying to travel as light as possible. I’ll have to hang my clothes as soon as I arrive, but I’ll take a weekender style bag over luggage any day. Kind of worried about the weather though, since winter has been so unpredictable and I’m not sure how cold/dry Austin will be (I come from the land of warmth and humidity). I’m hoping the stuff I packed is enough to get by.

Meanwhile, my dresser has decided to rebel. I’m not sure when my makeup started multiplying, but I’m going to have to rein it in before I leave. I hate coming home to a messy apartment. Wrote up a list of last-minute items to remember… chargers, glasses, night-guard. Little things that make all the difference when you’re so many miles from home.

Then there’s this flower. I bought a bunch about two weeks ago and this little pink wonder is still going strong. I don’t want to toss it… really hope it’s still here when I get back and not a mess of pink petals.

taking it as it goes

It’s been a bad week for writing. Have been in a blue mood and didn’t make much progress as a result. Revised half a chapter and wrote up some notes to work with, but that’s been it. I’m not too far off target for the month, but I wish I could say I had the drive for it. C’est la vie (or, at least, ma vie). I may or may not write today, and that’s ok. I’ll get back to it tomorrow and feel better for it.