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Mom's birthday was yesterday. Day before that was 2 year anniversary of dad's passing. I'm determined this year will be better. 2 was rougher than 1, I swear.

Anyway, we (hubby and I) took Mom to this classic car museum hubby found out about. He was going to take me for Valentine's surprise (and I was when we pulled up!!!!) but in winter it is by appointment only so we went back yesterday with Mom. She had a great time reminiscing about this dream car she had when she was younger and about the way they used to surprise the whole country with major car unveilings. A few pics of cars in the collection (Shutterfly)

Additionally, I think I'm old. :( I am starting to feel really nearsighted...enough that I will have to go to the eye doctor soon (for first time since I was 22 and my 20/20 vision was confirmed). I secretly hope I need glasses 'cause I think they're cute, but at the same time, I secretly hope not because I've tried on a billion (you get bored when waiting for your spouse to get his eyes checked and such every year because he is blind in one eye) and I have never found a pair that actually looks good on me...
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I need to state a few things for the record as time passes me by. I just never seem to feel like the words I have to say about myself are worth preserving. Hmm.

So, I'm on the cusp of having lost 50 lbs since around August. Hubby has reached 100 lbs down from June. It has made me notice many many things.
a) In our heads, it is a lifestyle change. We don't have an end goal for weight because we plan to just keep this schedule, more or less. At some point we expect to feel like we've hit a good point and then we will just be cautious with our diet and exercise, but we don't plan to quit. Even still, I am sick of the words "lifestyle change". I don't mind the word diet except that if you use it, everyone thinks it is an excuse and their right to begin telling you that what you are eating is wrong.
b) Actually, people do this anyway. It is somehow a community activity for me to act healthier and - as a side effect, really - lose weight.
c) I am also amused by "how are you doing it?" "Eat less than I did. Exercise more than I had been." "REALLY?" - thick with disbelief. Is it really such an amazing concept NOT to use pills or Weight Watchers? Sometimes they'll respond with how they really don't like sweets anyway and already do some exercise. Well, I didn't eat that many calories before and I exercised some, but the key is LESS and MORE.
d) When you lose that much weight, you realize just how much padding you had in your butt. Sitting hurts!
e) It's cold a lot.
f) I can fit into a dress (which I ordered a couple weeks ago and it arrived yesterday) which is a size smaller than my wedding dress (just shy of 14 years ago).
g) I do still have a lot of problems with my iron levels and such. Eating less has caused all sorts of problems with my body and supplements only go so far. Sucks sometimes.

Been working a lot on a novel this year. Mentioned before. Historical so lotsa work. I stumbled across some PT Barnum stuff which I've never really been interested in before, but you know what? He was a pistol! Best letters ever written in the 1800s (and trust me I've read enough to make this judgement) have GOT to be the ones between Barnum and the President of the ASPCA at the time...

I paused to work on a short story for a local writing contest, but since I didn't hear about the contest until 1 week before it was due (and just after a bunch of great free workshops I could have attended!!!) I didn't actually complete it. I plan to do so before next year, though, just as a goal. I'm still disappointed that I didn't have more time that week.

I was hoping to have a third w by the end, but I don't.
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Happy Holidays, all.
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I know it's petty of me or perhaps just stupid, but I really resent the fact that whenever someone posts about weight loss either on facebook, back in myspace days, or on a blog that the postee will have approximately 4 times more comments than they have for ANY OTHER POST. It just contributes to my growing irritation that everyone seems to think that other people's weight and other people's weight loss is somehow the most important damned thing in the world.

I appreciate my friends which is what makes it hard to feel this way. I appreciate their support and the fact that they comment at all, but ARGH!!!

So, I've been trying to be more of a presence on Facebook lately beyond commenting on friend's posts. I make my own posts a little more because between both FB and LJ, I just don't want to say anything anymore - yet in a weird way I want to exist.

Which is why I never mentioned I was taking steps to improve my health and which is why I KNEW I shouldn't have posted anything (over on FB) about my current struggle. I've had a billion frustrations that I've wanted to post to say what's up in my life, but I cannot stomach those "Hang in there!" and "you're doing great" comments. No. I was doing great with my life at the previous weight too, but that matters to no one; only actual lbs coming off.

There always has to be the person - could be someone you always roll your eyes at or it could be your best friend - but always the person who gives you advice on how to lose more or stick with it. Truth is, I probably know more about weight loss than people assume about a fat person. I've done a health course at the hospital, consultations with doctors, meetings through gyms and even tried to absorb information off TV. I think people assume you're fat because you don't know how calories and exercise work. Never seems to occur to them that I might just have better things to do with my time.

Proof SHOULD be the fact that I started eating 1200 calories a day and exercising 30 minutes, 7 days a week and lost NOTHING. In theory, according to the "experts" this is not possibly unless your metabolism has already adjusted to eating 1200 calories a day and doing some exercise. Yeah, over the last 20 years, guilt has made me afraid to eat and I've tried to keep healthy by doing some exercise, but never lose weight so when I get all strict about it, things still stay the same.

Sometimes I want to look at the people who criticize me and say "Maybe you eat responsibly and exercise the recommended 3 times a week to keep yourself healthy, but imagine for a moment that you have to cut your food intake in half and exercise 2-3 times as much as you do now." Tell me they wouldn't really be excited by that prospect?

I guess that's fine. To me this is just about those people who act like fucking cheerleaders. Whether they have had success on a diet or whether they never HAVE to diet, I find it irritating as hell. Yes, I admit I've congratulated others at times... isn't it the social convention? Yet, I cheer other accomplishments as well and today I'm a bit mad because almost all of the people who have cheered had absolutely no cheers for posts about anything else that I've done that deserves a pat on the back like, oh, say, writing...

...which brings up another issue. I know many of my friends here are writers. In most cases, that's how we met! Yet, don't you find that everyone right now is a writer? People who can't spell and have never told a good story at a party are suddenly wanting to be writers. I'm sure it doesn't make me any less, but it's stupid to think of all the time I've spend on the craft only to have a middle-aged lady pick up the pen last month and decide she's going to be a novelist. I think they are under the delusion that it's an easy way to make extra money. I swear to God if one of those numb skulls actually gets published, I will shoot myself (right after I write all the novels in my head because frankly, that's the only thing that keeps me going some days...)
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pics from vacation

These are posted by day, newest to oldest, with halloween pics posted this morning so you have to scroll down to all the ones labeled So. Cal. 2010.

Another update: Last post I responded to the Writer's Block about how old things are in your fridge and I said I didn't know because I hadn't been home, but I was willing to bet the peas and corn left my niece and her BF would still be there. Yeah, they were and they were all growing fur around the edges. WTF? They were right at the front at eye level. Who doesn't throw that away!? ICK!

So, I tossed it and did some fridge cleaning and opened the freezer to find...dun dun dun. The ice maker was broken in such a way that when it goes to fill the ice tray, the water instead runs down inside the door and all down into the shelves. Loverly! {sigh} I kinda wish the damn thing would just break once and for all so that I have an excuse to buy a new one. It's so old that it doesn't even have an engery efficiency rating...
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I don't know. I haven't seen it for 9 days. Anybody want to bet, though, that the corn and peas that niece and her BF had left in there for a week before we even left town is still there when we get home? I'll let you know on Tuesday!

So much to do. So much to see. Still, ya gotta take the time to sit back and enjoy a good vacation! I've had tons and tons of fun. Today we just went to the beach and hung around the hotel. Oh, we also ate at Souplantation location number 2... probably the second to ever open. See, we're big fans of Sweet Tomatoes/Souplantation back home because we can have salad, bowl of soup, and if we've really cut back the calories for the day, a nice piece of bread.

Oh, did I mention? Hubby and I are dieting. Maybe I did mention. He lost about 70 before we went on vacation. Me, only 22, but he still has 100 lbs on me. I'm sure we've both gained a bit on vacation. We splurged a bit, but also walked a ton so who knows? What I do know is that my pants are still falling off.

More importantly, though, it started because of health problems he's been having. They are much improved and for me it's just been nice not trying to do it all by myself. For me it's less about the weight - although it should be - than it is about getting moving. I needed the motivation because I bought that bike, but only went out 2-3 times a week. Now I've kept up 1-3 times a week, but also walking with hubby every single day.

Anyway, that's a bit of a detour. Basically, excellent vaca and tomorrow we'll spend the day driving home. I'm a bit at odds. I don't want to go, but I really really miss my cats!
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San Diego Zoo has teamed up with the Wild Animal Park and they are now, apparently, changing the name to Safari Park. While the zoos in both SL and San Diego have a lot of natural habitats, Safari Park takes it a step further. Aside from that it's a rescue preserve so just by paying for tickets, you're helping save injured and endangered wildlife. Cool.

The plants and scenery were gorgeous, but frankly I wasn't completely impressed - until we got on the included Safari Tour. I felt like I was on mini-safari because the animals were in such wide expansive spaces that you forgot about the few fences that were actually there. The animals were all African and beautiful!

Really today which was our last stop on the tour of Souther California. Tomorrow we plan to relax on the bay outside our hotel and then walk the few blocks to the actual beach to play in the waves.

It's been overcast the entire time. Disneyland was all hot hot hot, sun sun sun. Now that we're in the place where I want hot sun so I can enjoy the waters, we're in slightly cool, completely overcast weather. HA HA. That's okay. I can always skip the sun and I'll make due without the heat. Maybe i'll make a short video of the waves for my mom. She loves beaches...

After that, it's Monday morning and time to head home. It will take the entire day, but we should make it back home by late Monday. I miss my baby kitties. :(

Zoo day!

Oct. 15th, 2010 10:48 pm
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So, we're in a resort on Mission bay. Out our window is the bay and on the other side of the hotel is the cove. Cove is private for guests only while bay is public - but still has been very quiet and private. Took Jane to cove side where she collected seashells. Then off we went to the ZOO! It was quiet fun - many animals we don't have in SL. Pandas were sleepy. Koalas were sleepy. Polar Bears were hungry.

We came back in the evening and rode the resort's private steamboat-replica ferry across the bay in the moonlight. Well, no moon, really, so just the lights from other resorts around the bay. It was lovely! Reminded us of our wedding - we were married in a riverboat-replica.

Lovely day and evening.

Sea World

Oct. 14th, 2010 09:56 pm
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Missed a couple days. On Tuesday night we went to Mickey's Halloween Party. While it was very cool, it was also a bit of a ripoff. They told us there would be facepainting and other events. Instead face painting ended when the party started and the events were standing in more lines to get autographs from Disney characters which Jane suddenly wanted to do... The next day, the same characters were in the park and the lines were shorter! We had been told that the number of passes to the party were limited, but it was just as crowded as daytime. Uh, false advertising.

Still, Jane loved every second.

Wednesday we spend another day at Disneyland... more lines... some rides. It was all pretty great, but...

Pales in comparison for me. Today was Sea World day. This is the day I've been looking forward to since booking the trip! We saw the sea lion, dolphin, and killer whale shows. We fed both the dolphins and the bat rays (they are the biggest stingrays I've seend!) Then we miraculously got back to our hotel (a very nice little resort on the beach, btw!!) in time to eat dinner and relax for the first time in days! Lovely.

Tomorrow morning I promised Jane the beach, then it's off to the zoo. They've got giant pandas! I'm sooo excited.
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Starting to miss my laptop. Hubby's laptop does stupid things that neither of us knows how to change settings! Mine allows a lot more options to tell cursor to stop bouncing around we and then performing the action of whatever it has bounced to. LAME!

Today, Jane got to see a ton of characters. Much less interested in rides. We did see Muppets 3-D and it was AWESOME! I loves my muppets! In the evening saw World of Color - a water show with lights, fire, and images projected onto the water mist. Quite amazing!
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We left Vegas early in the morning and to our surprise, found there IS a place to stop between Vegas and LA now. Baker has a little shop called Alien Fresh Jerky. Why stop? Why, the alien billboards were adorable! Well, when we pulled in, it was like something you'd see in Roswell NM. They had Aliens driving a car, sitting on top of the building, and filling the store. Hilarious!

We continued on to Disneyland and found that although we were early for check-in time, the room was ready so we got to freshen up a bit before we walked over to the park. The whole time we're waiting to get our tickets and all that, Jane can't see the rides so she's convinced there is nothing there. We walk in to Main Street. "Is this all there is?" OMG! SO impatient.

Finally we made it onto the train and rode around the park to orient ourselves, but of course you still don't really see rides. Too many people! Finally we get to the haunted house, get our fast pass, then pick next ride. Jane wants Splash Mountain. Okay.......... AHHHHHHHHHH. We got SOAKED. Hilarious!

Anyway, spent the next few hours trying to pick rides with lines on the short side and such, watched the fireworks and water show (awesomeness) and then hit the haunted house and came home only to literally fall into bed! That was only half a day. How are we going to do a full day!?!?!

Day 2

Oct. 9th, 2010 07:43 pm
snowee: (living dead dolls)
Since I lack a formal hand-written journal right now, I'll log my vacations here.

Day 1: Driving. Drive some more. Stop in Vegas. Drive the strip and around town. Sleep.

Day 2: I read about the Ethel M chocolate factory and cactus garden as an alternative to the overly trendy, overly crowded M&M factory which is on the Vegas stip. Well, we headed out there and found out it was actually quite amazing. Cacti surrounded us and the chocolates were delicious. Turns out there is a mini-M&M World RIGHT THERE! After that, we headed to Hoover Dam - a place Scott has apparently wanted to see for years. It was... not a thrill, but at least we can say it's been done. Caught in traffic and all, we got back near Vegas at about 4 pm and decided to have buffet for lunch. We stopped at Sam's Town - a little buffet I found last time I was in Vegas with Awesome Friend - and we had a great meal. Now we're chillin' at the hotel because - well, with the walk thought the Cactus Gardens in 80 degree weather and the walk across the dam nearing 90 is just about enough to wipe us out. Besides, Jane has lots of schoolwork to complete before she goes back after vacation.

Tomorrow morning we rise early to drive drive drive into California - but we should get there early enough to spend half-day in Disneyland!!

Hey, email me at velvettattoo/gmail if you want a postcard from Disneyland or Sea World.

Piccies! but you have to be my friend on FB. Later, maybe, I'll put the best ones on LJ.


Aug. 29th, 2010 06:55 pm
snowee: (animal)
Booked our California adventure trip for mid October. Three days in Disneyland for the kid. Five days in San Diego for me. YAY!!!

Getting fired from Scentsy. Okay, you can't get fired from Multi-Level-Marketing, but I didn't meet my goals so I can't sell anymore. 'Tis okay. Avon doesn't work in the MLM format AND my sales are starting to go up for holidays so I'll have a pretty steady, awesome profit there. YAY!!!

I wrote another 10,000 words of my novel this week alone. My mojo is absolutely, definitely, no question, back. YAY!!!

I will be getting colour in tattoo asap. I called last week, but my artist wasn't in so I will have to call again tomorrow to see if I can pin him down for the appointment. With luck it will be this coming week. YAY!!!

Hubby got a bonus for his temporary promotion so he bought me my own Nook. I love it. YAY!!!

Jane's in 4th grade. I can't believe it! She's becoming pretty awesome to hang around, too, just for the record as those are words I never really thought I'd say. YAY!!!

For fun...

Jul. 17th, 2010 11:43 pm
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Large sample from my first novel:

I write like
Ray Bradbury

I Write Like by Mémoires, Mac journal software. Analyze your writing!

Large sample from second novel:

I write like
James Joyce

I Write Like by Mémoires, Mac journal software. Analyze your writing!

Large sample from third:

I write like
Mark Twain

I Write Like by Mémoires, Mac journal software. Analyze your writing!

Varied, truly... especially since the person from who I swiped this got modern authors like Dan Brown. At least mine I can respect. I rather dig James Joyce and always loved Ray Bradbury....
snowee: (Hitchcock)
This month has been busy, really. I suppose I should admit that as well. The weekend of the 4th, the Summer of Jam officially began! I made and processed about 24 pints of jam (mostly half pint jars - a few quarter pints - so I had more than 48 jars roaming around the kitchen). Regular strawberry, low sugar strawberry, Black Strawberry (blackberry/strawberry), Raspricot (raspberry/apricot), and lemon-strawberry marmalade. YUMS!

There will be more. I bought a pressure cooker last week so that I could do the low acid foods. I intend to make pickles, salsa, more jam/marmalade, and hopefully figure out how to turn all the grape juice I've been making from our vines the last three years into wine. We'll see what actually comes about.

Same weekend as the jam kickoff, we went on a day trip to this huge car show I heard about this year. Lots of great restored vehicles. Pretty cool.

And tomorrow night, I'll be going to see Jon Schmidt in concert. I haven't seen him in years because he's so popular around here that his tickets have been more than I'm willing to spend. Found out about his show just down the street from my mom's house so I got three tickets and will probably park at her place so I don't have to deal with stupid people. YAY.

Upon reflection here, halfway through the year, I'm not sure these things I'm doing each month really seem that big. I don't know. Maybe they aren't, but I had just become so comfortable in my rut and the status quo that it feels huge to just do these things. Plan them. Make them happen. Not consult everyone and occasionally consult no one.

End of this month, will be seeing friend who is visiting from Missouri... one of those friends I've had since we were kids. I NEED to find a way to get out and visit her as it occurred to me this week that she's been gone 10 years and I only see her when she comes out to visit her family. Anyway, I'm VERY excited to see her.

Need to book my room and tickets for August. Next month I'll be going to the Utah Shakespearean festival to see...non-shakes. They're doing a performance of The 39 Steps and I can hardly wait to see it. I've heard a little hype about this Broadway adaptation, but hey. It's Hitchcock related. We know I'll love it, right?

They're doing Macbeth. I haven't decided yet if I'll see that too.

Oh, one last thing! It was nearly 106 in my area of the valley today, according to car's gauge. OMG, it was the best thing ever to come home from errands and step inside the COOOL FUCKING HOUSE! That's right, kids. Gone are the days of it being 88 in the house because the cooler can't keep up. I have central air now! (added excitement, I checked in on my power usage and it's not a whole lot more than last year because I insisted on going with the highest SEER rating. HA! It was worth the battle)


Jun. 16th, 2010 09:06 pm
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But I'm gonna count it a little in May because I did commission the drawing in those last few days...

Colour later. I didn't have enough time to spend the whole night in the hot seat and I'm thinking when V.J. is in school, it will be a great time to get the job finished.


Jun. 13th, 2010 02:46 pm
snowee: (batwings)
Am I tired? Is it just PMS or the weather? Do I have the blues? Why do I feel like just sitting in my room and crying? Things are, theoretically, pretty good. I just don't know what to do with myself. I had been working on my next novel, doing well. I know exactly what I want to write next, where it's going, it's so fleshed out I can't believe it's taking this long, but I haven't been able to do anything for a week. Up until this morning I thought my mood was fine. I really just want to crawl back into bed and screw my obligations and say see ya next fall... but I don't have a reason.


May. 25th, 2010 11:35 am
snowee: (Eddie)
May is a wash, methinks.

I didn't get much writing done, although I vow to get some done this week. Still, not enough to be noteworthy.

I intended to make an appointment for something big, but every time I wanted to go, Jane came home sick from school, an Avon customer would reschedule, my sister wanted me to babysit, etc etc. See, it's a place that opens at noon and I have to get there, consult, and be back in time for Jane to come home from school.

And I'm having second thoughts about doing it, too. Yeah, cagey. I wanted to just do it and then bring it up, but now I don't know if I am making the right choice.

And I thought about applying for a passport, but I didn't want to spend the money.


But I did have a great b-day. Threw myself a bbq party and got the yard whipped into shape. {shrug} I guess there are a few days of the month left, but I'm a little stumped on what I can do...
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