vlog: in which I reveal my consumerism

I did it. I filmed an empties video. I’m not a strict lifestyle vlogger, but I do enjoy me some empties videos, and I like the fact that they’re like mini reviews of products rather than brand focused. Also, in moving towards a “minimalist” lifestyle, I am making a concerted effort to use up products, especially items I bought on a whim or just want to finish before moving on to something else. My goal is to get rid of the stuff I’ve accumulated in a strategic way and share my thoughts with others so they can make informed decisions.:)

Click through for a list of the products mentioned.

Also, in the spirit of decluttering, I joined Mercari. Currently have two Coach bags listed, if anyone’s interested:).

Continue reading

writing: visualizing characters

While outlining “the sequel,” I’ve started thinking about the little things that make my protagonist/rivals so different, including their style, which I use to convey differences in their personalities as much as their appearance. Anúna and Siobhan are twins, but they are as unlike as night and day… or are they…

Anuna inspiration

 

Siobhan inspiration

 

the view from Sunday: already?!

completely lost track of time this weekend. Had a lovely, adventure-filled Saturday with the auntie and bébé, followed by movie night with the boy, while Sunday was full of family goodness… all with a side of de-cluttering. I’m on a roll, people. It’s finally coming together (or coming apart, I should say). I finally found the courage to part with stuff that belonged to my cat (I just couldn’t bear to sort it after he died and ended up stuffing it in the back of the closet), as well as some handmade scarves that my mom knit (too many, she was in a knitting frenzy). I kept what I like and what really matters, but the rest will be donated and handed down.

Sad to say, I still have the mites. Not the terrible infestation it was at first, but I do see a few from time to time. Just have to keep at it, I guess.

On a brighter note, I met my Camp goal on Saturday (!) and celebrated by purchasing a couple of crystals at the craft bazaar we visited later that day. Malachite plays a rather significant part my current (never ending) WIP, and citrine is a personal favorite.

 photo 100_5628_zpshscxae2r.jpg

I’ll be better about pictures next week…

off the shelf: Finding Fraser by kc dyer

Feeling Outlander withdrawal? Check out kc dyer’s Finding Fraser, one girl’s quest to find a highlander of her own, one mishap at a time.

 photo findingfraser_zpsapadsnfm.jpgFinding Fraser is a quick, light read. It’s a contemporary romance, along the lines of all those finding Mr. Darcy style books, with an Outlander twist. It’s a little slow to start (at least for me), but the story picks up. There are moments when Emma, the protagonist, is more than a little exasperating, but I didn’t expect much going in, just a fluffy, summer read.

 

MENTIONED

Finding Fraser by kc dyer: https://amzn.com/0399584366

Lady of the Glen by Jennifer Roberson: https://amzn.com/B00D2XJJP4

just another update on this crazy thing called life

I think they’re gone… I’m hesitant to even admit it, but I really think the mites are dying, dead, or leaving for greener pastures because I have not seen or felt a single one since Sunday. (with my luck, they’ll be back this afternoon) I’m not sure which of the many magic brews made it happen, but I think it was the combination of EcoSmart (available on Vitacost), Sentry Natural Defense (available at Petco), and a 3 parts 91% alcohol, witch hazel, hydrogen peroxide spray with orange essential oil. Yes, I tried everything. My house smells like all kinds of herbs, including thieves blend oil, tea tree, orange oil, peppermint. and eucalyptus. It’s a veritable apothecary. Sigh.

Aside from the bugs, my TMJ has been the worst it’s been in months (probably due to the stress and my inability to get a good night’s sleep), which means I’ve been living with a persistent ache along my jaw, teeth, and neck… which means hello, migraine. I’ve taken a few different things for it, but it’s one of those that linger until suddenly they disappear. I feel half-drunk and generally moody, but I’m managing. Started doing yoga again on Sunday (with the bugs, I could barely sit still, let alone focus on breathing); it’s been three days in a row now. Hoping it helps. It’s just difficult to concentrate on anything when everything hurts and you feel like bugs are crawling all over you. *shudder*

writing: Pinspiration and visual storytelling

The most important part of writing is writing (followed by rewriting), but there are some days when I just need a visual to get the wheels turning… having only recently (!!!) discovered how to share my pins on WordPress, I think it’s high time I give you all a glimpse into the world I’ve been imagining for the last 4 years (yes, it’s really been that long). Anúna (or, as I have finally started calling it, Crown of Ice, Crown of Air) is a fantasy set in this world and the Other. It is a story of elemental magick, rivalry, and war, but it is also a story of love and finding something worth fighting for. I’ve been thinking about this world for a long time and I hope to one day share it with others (#writergoals).

the view from Sunday: mugs, books, and kitties!

Still dealing with the mites, but the plague appears to be under control *fingers crossed* so life is starting to settle into something of a rhythm again. With all the spraying and cleaning, I decided to re-evaluate my mug collection and concluded that, rather than ridding myself of the excess, I should rid myself of all the other stuff cluttering my pantry. Result: happy mugs! I did get rid of a few, mostly the ones that were too thin or fussy to handle (no joy when you get burned by hot contents), but the rest make me happy, so they stay until the day they don’t.

 photo P1030098_zpseouubvrf.jpg

a few were in the wash, but you get the idea

Of course, having finished Newt’s Emerald and Finding Fraser (video to come!), I am now between books and enjoying a torrid literary affair with several authors at once.

 photo P1030095_zpsbstvjuir.jpg

The cats seem completely unperturbed by the mites and the cleaning… see, totally floppy and oblivious. Just wait until the new vacuum arrives…

 photo P1030097_zps56sodvqb.jpg

 photo P1030094_zpshsosjbpj.jpg

one of these things is not like the others

I’m off to enjoy the rest of my afternoon and get some more reading in before the boy comes over.

TTFN!

 

off the shelf: writing fiction

Molly from Wrapped Up in Books recently asked about my favorite books on writing fiction… tada! I give you my top recommendations in pin form. I’ll be updating this collection as I discover new ones, so make sure to follow the board for updates!

But, of course, the best way to learn to write is simple to write. And read. Read all the things, and learn from them. Learn your craft by doing and find inspiration in what you love to read.

misery continues

Last week was pretty rough, and it looks like the misery continues… the reason is twofold:

1) I have bird mites. Long story short, the building across the way was remodeled and all the birds that used to nest in the thatches decided my building was the place to be. This place is haphazard at best when it comes to being air tight. The birds built a nest, the hatchlings department, the bird mites found a way in through the A/C unit. Now I have creepy crawlies all over and I am highly allergic to pesticides. I am trying anything and everything that I have read to get rid of them, and praying to all the gods that something works. I removed the nest, so I’m hoping they will die out when their life cycle runs its course… Now, there is a lot of conflicting information on the interwebs; some sites (the more reputable looking ones) say three weeks, others say I am doomed. I’m hoping the three week one is correct and that some progress is underway.

2) I have (hopefully, had) a fire ant infestation in my bathroom, which explains the itchy welts that have been plaguing me. The mites are annoying, but I haven’t noticed a reaction, just the terrible sensation that they are crawling on me, which makes it very hard to fall asleep (I’m desperate and tired), but the ants are nasty. I think I traced the source to a plant I had in my bathroom. I tossed it and felt terrible for it, but I couldn’t handle anymore bites.

Among all the madness, I decided to take a shower and scrub myself with epsom salt, as the interwebs say you do… I dropped the jar and glass shattered all over my tub. I am scratched up and itchy and hot, because my A/C was doused with stuff and I’m trying to let it soak in, so I’m just waiting to see if I can get a break soon. I really don’t know what to do and an exterminator is pretty much out of the question because of my allergies and my landlords being the spendthrifts they are. I just want a nice, pest-free home again. My wallet is a little lighter after the unexpected spending on potential remedies, but something has to work, right?

If anyone out there reading this has had experience eradicating bird mites, please, share the knowledge!