Sunday, October 31, 2010

Sunday Serenity #202

I just love pictures of books. Can't get enough of looking at them. Seeing this painting by Annie Fisk reminded me that all through Junior High and High school I obsessively doodled pictures of books--on shelves, standing between book ends, in stacks. laying flat open or closed and any combination of that. I wonder if I could still draw a recognizable book. With my eyes no longer working in tandem I have major issues with depth perception and that could make it difficult to get the perspective right. But who cares if it is just doodling right?


Saturday, October 30, 2010

Phoenix Feather: Bead for Life

Oh, I am so drooling over these beads! I can just see them incorporated into my crocheted bookmarks or the braided bookmarks I'm planning.

Why they rate a Phoenix Feather is because the Bead for Life organization is "Eradicating Poverty One Bead at a Time" as these beads are made from scrap paper by Ugandan women and then sold loose like this and as jewelry.

I totally love the concept: Trash to Beauty to Life.

Hoarder that I am I am gratified to see things considered trash by most and some of the very kinds of things I save--bright colored waste paper like magazine covers and junk mail and candy wrappers--turned into something beautiful and useful and in the process supporting families who are typically living on a dollar a day by providing food, medicine, school fees.


Friday, October 29, 2010

Friday Forays in Fiction: Cloud of Unknowing

<-- Creation of New Story by Chris Henry at

NaNoWriMo begins in less than 48 hours and I'm still unclear about what story I'll be writing. For the first time in years I have not written any fiction since the end of the last NaNo. Which leaves my confidence in convulsions. I'm trying to account for the last eleven months and they are a blur of story binging via reading and DVD and Web streaming and pods accompanied by bookmark making. I did dabble with a new story during Script Frenzy in April but didn't get more than a few pages before letting it dribble off my daily platter.

This doesn't feel like the usual pre NaNo angst as it is lacking the energy and excitement and anticipation. This resembles ennui and the temptation to back out is fierce. But I know that I'd eventually regret letting my consecutive year streak end at six. So here's hoping the fog clears some soon. Meanwhile I must grope within it for my story and my motivation.


Thursday, October 28, 2010

Library Loot: October 27 to November 2

Library Loot is a weekly event co-hosted by Claire from The Captive Reader and Marg from The Adventures of an Intrepid Reader that encourages bloggers to share the books they’ve checked out from the library. If you’d like to participate, just write up your post-feel free to steal the button-and link it using the Mr. Linky any time during the week. And of course check out what other participants are getting from their libraries!

Claire has Mr Linky this week

These are the items we brought home from the library in the last week:

Slumdog Millionaire 1 videodisc (120 min.) watched with Ed last weekend. My first time, his second.

The Sopranos. The complete third season [videorecording (DVD)] 4 videodiscs (ca. 780 min.) will be watching these over the weekend while Ed is using bandwidth for his gaming preventing me from watching streaming vids on Netflix. (also have three DVD from Netflix on the way!)

Duplicity [videorecording (DVD)] 1 videodisc (125 min.) will be watching this over the weekend with Ed I hope but will watch it regardless if I can tear him away from his game for it.

I got interrupted by my husband's arrival home from swing shift and had to break for dinner and clearing off the bed for him. Now it has taken me so long to gather and upload the book covers that I'm going to limit myself to one brief comment for each.

A coffee table book featuring the art of Frieda Kahlo with critiscism

Am learning to braid to add to my bookmark making repertoire.

Friendship band techniques lend well to bookmark concepts.

More ideas for the bookmarks.

Seeing Myla Goldberg's newest novel being discussed in the blogosphere prompted me to get in queue at the library for it and reminded me that i hadn't finished Wickett's Remedy when I had it chadcked out several years ago.

Ever since I watched the HBO biopic of Temple Grandin I'be been obsessed with reading her books. It is also research for a character in one of my stories suffering with something on the autism spectrum.

The day I watched the movie based on The Freedom Writer's Diary I ordered the book from the library and while on the site found this memoir by the teacher and ordered it as well.

Relates to my interest in comparative culture and religion.

Been seeing some great reviews of this for quite some time now so it was about time to put in my request.

This will be a reread. I ordered it to help with my NaNoWriMo novel pep weeks ago but am just now getting it. NaNo stars Sunday night at midnight!

Just saw the movie a couple weeks ago and now want to read the book.

Ordered this during Banned Books Week and am just now getting it.

After watching the movie Bliss I went looking for more stories set in Turkey or by Turkish authors.

My sister-friend Jamie was reading this a few weeks back and was telling me about it, predicting I would love it.


Wednesday, October 27, 2010


Hello, my name is Joy and I'm a hoarder.

If there isn't a Hoarders Anonymous there ought to be.

I've been watching season 1 of A & E's Hoarders the last couple weeks or maybe three. With other series I often watch several episodes in a row in a kind of gluttonous binge but with Hoarders I can barely watch one episode straight through without taking a break.

I see too many of my own quirks, behaviors, justifications represented in the people featured on these shows. I get the feeling they probably select their participants in large part because they represent the worst of the worst--stuff stacked floor to ceiling in every room of the house with pathways too narrow for a stretcher when the husband has a heart attack or a wife strips over a box on the stairs and breaks her arm; infestations of mice, rats, cats, possums, flies, mold, rotting animal carcasses and rotting food; houses being condemned, renters evicted, children removed.

I never reached such a level of gross out and doubt I ever would. When it comes to cleaning I confess to letting things slide quite often for weeks at a time but never for years or decades. Probably because closely related to my hoarding issues is my obsessive reorganizing and rearranging of the furniture and the stuff . But when it comes to collecting stuff I probably don't have rooms stacked floor to ceiling with (organized) stuff only because until ten years ago we've never lived in one place more than a few years and twice we lost nearly everything we'd accumulated in the previous decade or so and in the last decade we've had only one small room to expand in and probably only three fifths of that. But this room is stuffed such that it would be difficult to swing a mouse by its tail in here.

So I do identify strongly with those whose proclivity is collecting things that have potential uses: books, crafting and sewing supplies, office supplies. Doesn't sound so bad when listed that way but if i were to confess some of the subcategories you might shake your head until its contents felt somewhat like the die in a Boggle game between rounds. Like gum wrappers and foils candy wraps, clothing tags and the cardboard backs of note tablets for bookmarks; unlabeled plastic bags, plastic containers and various cardboard boxes for storing crafting, sewing and office supplies in which until said uses are found for them hold only cardboard boxes, plastic containers and plastic bags; snips of crochet thread, yarn and embroidery floss shorter than the needles for crafting projects I have in mind for them (think abstract art and bookmarks or greeting cards) or else for the birds to use in their nests; twist ties, paperclips, rubberbands for their various organizing uses but of which I have dozens to store for every one actually used.

In that list I've covered only the things that have volume and mass but I'm sure my collecting of podcasts, ebooks, graphics, photos, games, applications, URLs, stories forever in progress and the characters for them that proliferate faster than the pages, notes, unfinished book reviews and essays and other digital files is related as well as proliferation of new ideas and concepts and issues to be concerned about from the BP oil spill and every other environment wounding to child labor in China, from abused children and animals to war, corruption, slave trafficking, civil rights and victims of natural disasters.

And then there are the unfinished projects from TBR and TBW piles and lists of books and videos to cross stitch and crochet and other sewing, from stories to sorting and organizing stuff to blog revamping and a web page project with potential for income on which I've been working for five years. And lets not forget an email inbox pushing 1400.

And do you suppose the accumulation that expands my waistband has anything to do with this?

Well I have been tackling these issues head on for over a year and have made significant progress in spite of a few setbacks but I've been doing keeping mostly to myself about it with only Ed and my two sisters in the loop. I'm thinking maybe it might help me pick up the pace if I went public with my shame and thus create a sense of being accountable for follow through if only by the need to have progress to show in order regain my dignity after laying it on the altar of public confession. So I'll be posting occasionally on this with photos to illustrate my shame and declare my reclaimed dignity.

A very ironic thing happened as I set out to create this post. Today I'd done a major reorganizing of my 'office' beside the bed in preparation for the NaNo kickoff at midnight Sunday night. I also sorted a months worth of laundry and did several loads including the bedding. I wanted to at least start the marathon month with my work environment as tidy and conducive to productivity as possible. Well, as I began working on this post Ed arrived home from his swing shift with a tall hot coffee for me. I set it on a tray that was balanced on a box on the bed to my left. Most of the time I was keeping my hand on the handle (I had transferred it into my lidded, insulated mug) as I operated the mouse and watch YouTube videos. I had just brought my right hand up to the keyboard briefly for a keystroke or three when Merlin jumped up on the bed and then onto the edge of the tray which then catapulted my mug onto the bed where all but a couple swallows gushed out before I could spot its dark blue against the dark green of the blanket. It soaked through the blanket and both sheets and saturated the mattress and that portion of me that was planted on the bed. There was a narrow miss of a library book and the bag with two spools of crochet thread and a bookmark in progress.

As if I wasn't feeling demoralized enough after spending some six hours shuffling stuff around (including Merlin who seemed to absolutely have to sit or sleep right where I needed to sit or crawl or right on the thing I needed to use or move) yet again and in the process stubbing my toe, banging my elbow, bumping me head, being snared by the cords of my ear buds, discman, netbook, printer, detached disc drive, camera, lamp, alarm clock. I swear the very hair on Medusa's head had migrated to this room to make my efforts as impossible as possible and as miserable!

Now I have to strip the bed again and wash an extra load and remake the bed. Meanwhile I have to sleep on the damp spot!

And of course the spilled coffee is directly caused by the hoarding since that is why I no longer have a stable place to set a cup of coffee on or near my workstation.


Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Phoenix Feathers: Big Cat Rescue

Meowloween Video: Big Kittehs Play With Pumpkins

This video was featured on I loved it so much I watched four times. Then of course I had to follow the link shown at the end of the video and scope out what Big Cat Rescue was all about. They are a sanctuary for big cats in Tampa Florida where they maintain a cat-a-tat on 40 some acres that is an enriched living environment for big cats from bob cats to lions and every size, shape and color in the spectrum. These cats have been rescued from abusive and unhealthy living conditions from illegal home pets and fur farms to various exploitative entertainment situations and incidents in the wild that leave them either temporarily or permanently unable to fend for themselves.

There were more videos to watch on where you can subscribe to their newsletter alerting you to new videos.

Alternatively you can

They also have guided tours of their sanctuary on which you can watch the tenders feeding the cats as seen in a few frames of the Meowloween video.

They hold a fund raising event every October called the Fur Ball which looks like a purrtasitic pawtrotting extravaganza. Video of the 2010 event can be found here.

Bobcat kittens fostered by domestic mama cat.

From the moment I saw the video on icanhazcheezeburger I knew I would be posting it but after a few minutes on I knew I had to do more than a post in haste drop and run as per usual with fun vids or LOLcats. I wanted to do something to feature the work Big Cat Rescue does and honor them for it. Then I remembered the Phoenix Feather, a kind of kudos post about individuals and organizations doing unselfish things on behalf of the vulnerable or victimized which I'd set out to make a regular feature of my blog in the early months of its existence. But I'd been distracted and let it slide into oblivion after only a few posts.

This has inspired me to revive the Phoenix Feather as a regular feature at Joystory.

The 2nd, 3rd and 4th videos I've posted here give some highlights of the kind of work Big Cat Rescue does. Above is the story of a litter of orphaned bobcat kittens fostered by a domestic mama cat--a match facilitated by Big Cat Rescue.

Below is the story of an abused and exploited tiger which they are trying to rescue. Tony the tiger is a prime example of why the need to stop patronizing such entertainment venues is as urgent as the need to stop buying real fur--in both cases the animals are bred for a short unhappy life in cages. This includes those businesses who provide baby lions and tigers for appearances at malls, birthday parties and such where petting and other play by the attendees is allowed. I mean think about it! The kittens are small enough to play safe with humans for only a few weeks and then what becomes of them?

The video at bottom shows one of the ways 'going green' has been implemented at the sanctuary.

Tony the Truck Stop Tiger

Tigers go Green


Monday, October 25, 2010

The Curious Case of Benjamin Button--The Movie

I watched this streaming on Netflix last night. It is 2 hours and 46 minutes long yet I wouldn't have minded another hour or two. It is adapted from an F. Scott Fitzgerald story which I haven't read but not MUST read. I was surprised to learn Fitzgerald had written anything in what is now known as sci-fi/fantasy. But then I guess I couldn't claim to really know what a Fitzgerald story could be classified as since I've never read one. I've had The Great Gatsby checked out of the library more than a few times since my senior year in high school but never read more than the first few pages. Apparently I've been missing out on something special. That is if Fitzgerald stories are all typical of this one in its cast of complex character, its insight into human motivations, its contemplation of meaningful concepts, its weaving of theme through setting and its intricate plot.

I took a break to check out the library catalog for Fitzgerald stories and was about to order a couple or three (The Great Gatsby, Tender is the Night and The American Library collection of his novels and short stories which includes the short story, The Curious Case of Benjamin Button) but I decided to first see if any of his work was available online and found them at Adelaide U including Benjamin Button.

Besides being an exploration of the themes of time, mortality and being alive it is a love story. And talk about a star crossed love. Benjamin was born with all the characteristics of a very old man and ages backwards thus it wasn't until they were both in their forties that for a few years he could have the love of his life whom he had met and first loved when they were both pre teens. And then only for a few years as soon he begins to look more like her son than her lover.

I just discovered the movie adaptation retains very little from the plot of the actual Fitzgerald story other than the character's name and the concept of a man aging backward. And no evidence of a love story in the synopsis I just read. Now I'm worried that the movie has spoiled the experience of reading the story for me. Not for the usual reason of giving away the plot but because the movie version was so wonderful I fear the Fitzgerald version will fall flat in comparison. Usually with movies based on good literature it is the other way around with the movie unable to rise to the vision of the author.


Sunday, October 24, 2010

Sunday Serenity #201

Dreaming of drowsy Sunday afternoons at the library.

Something about this picture reminds me of our local library in the sixties when I was growing up. It had a spiral stair similar to this but with glass steps and wrought iron rails leading up to a mezzanine where the grownups fiction was shelved. But by the time I was old enough to check out upstairs there had been a remodel and those stairs had been replaced by the choice of an elevator or wide 'normal' staircase.


Saturday, October 23, 2010

48 Hours

Watchkitteh will purrtek puter will sacurfice wizcurz 2 keep stikky fingurs off no b straktud by ball

The last 48 hours (11 something Thursday night to 11 something Saturday night) have been an emotional coaster ride and totally messed up the new sleep schedule I was trying to implement. I had purposely shorted myself on sleep Thursday so I could be asleep six to eight hours sooner than the previous week or so. I hoped to be waking by noon instead of laying down to sleep.

Had already posted before Ed got home from work at 10:30 that night and anticipated being asleep by 3 if not sooner. Then Ed's laptop was stolen off the front porch after he was lured out into the back yard to toss a ball back to a kid over by the pool.
Well it was after 2 before Ed calmed down enough to sleep and then I decided the best way for me to work off the angst of the whole incident and its implications was to write about it so I spent two hours writing Friday's post. And then another two hours watching Netflix online.

It was after 7 before I got to sleep and then Ed woke me less than two hours later to tell me his Mom was loaning him the money to replace his laptop. After he left with his Dad to shop for it I tried to get back to sleep but it was too bright in the room and my mind was buzzing and my belly mumbling so when I heard them get back a bit over an hour later I got up to go see it and to get something to eat.

So it was once again nearly noon before I got back to sleep. And then, per my orders, Ed brought me a cup of coffee as he began to get ready for work just before 2. I sat up and sipped at it for a minute or so but lay back down thinking I was safe from falling back to sleep as Ed would be back in to get dressed in five minutes.

Ha! The next thing I knew I was opening my eyes in a dark room again. I saw the number 11 on my clock and thought it was 11PM but it was only 7:11. I sat up and began drinking the cold coffee as I lifted the lid of my netbook. Having already posted for the day I was free to do what I wanted and since Ed wasn't hogging bandwidth gaming I wanted to watch Netflix online. For an hour or two anyway. At least until my eyes could focus well enough to read or crochet.

But no go. The internet was down and stayed down until after 9:30.

I gave up waiting at 8 and put the Netflix DVD of Beloved in the drive. A 2:55 minute movie though the end titles were over 20 minutes. That was a treat since I'd been trying to get my hands on that movie for a decade. Had wanted to see it when it was in the theaters in 98 but couldn't and then none of the several libraries I had access to over the next 12 years ever carried it.

I'd read the book when it came out in the early 90s and it had put Toni Morrison into my top 10 fav authors list. I think it is past time to read it again as I read it before the sea change in my psyche the winter of 94/95 and now I also want to compare it to the movie and my memory needs refreshing. I really don't get why the movie didn't do well with either critics or boxoffice at the time. Surely it had to be more than it being too long. It wasn't too long for me. I was captivated from scene one to the end.

Anyway, I'd watched one episode of Arrested Development online after Beloved was over and then quit anticipating being interrupted by Ed's return from work at any moment but he didn't get home until after 12:30.

And once again it was after 2 before he was asleep. So my expectation of making good use of the 6-9 hours of Ed not needing either the net nor my attention fared no better than the flies that buzz Bruiser's nose. Thus I stayed up a couple hours longer than I intended watching Netflix online. And then I slept until after 1pm. Not so bad actually. Only two hours off the ideal.

Ed currently has Saturday and Sunday off so I anticipated he'd be online until dinner and again until after 9pm and so he was. I spent the afternoon reading or crocheting while listening to news pods More of the same for a couple hours after dinner and dishes. Tho for an hour of that the crocheting accompanied a phone visit with my sister-friend Jamie.

Ed's folks headed to bed about 9:30 then the two of us watched the library DVD of Slumdog Millionaire on the big flat screen in the living room and then visited awhile before he began to prepare for bed and I to prepare this post.

And that was my 48 hour coaster ride.


Friday, October 22, 2010

Scene of the Crime

This is where it happened. Except it was night. Past eleven and dark surrounded the island of light on the porch where Ed sat smoking and gaming on his laptop. It was the first time in over a week he had got home with enough time and energy left to get on the computer after work. He was in in the best mood he'd been in days.

Then from beyond the back fence from over by the park pool a kid kicked his ball into the backyard. Not a young kid but high teens to mid twenties. He called out to Ed asking him to get his ball and Ed obliged, coming down off the porch and crossing the front yard, opening the gate getting the ball and sending it back over the fence. Ed says he was gone no more than thirty seconds. But that was all the time the perp needed to mount the porch steps, unplug the laptop from its cord and disappear down the unlit lane in front of the trailer.

We're sure the two worked as a team. Using Ed's obliging generosity against him.

So now, after being spoiled by us each having our own laptop for nearly two years we are back to sharing. With NaNo starting in ten days!!! It will be several weeks, probably after Thanksgiving, before he can even think about replacing it and of course that means other things get pushed back down the priority list.

Ed is heartbroken and I feel his pain. Have imagined it happening to me vividly enough to seem almost real which is why I would never walk away from mine for even five seconds when I took it out there and why I was always teethgrittingly irritated with him when he did it with his (once even leaving it out there while he ate dinner inside) and beyond irritated when he used to leave my laptop out there back when he was using it regularly.

He didn't have anything irreplaceable on his machine. Unlike me with my two dozen plus stories in progress and dozens of poems, years of journals, hundreds of photos--thousands including the family photo scan project--hundreds and hundreds of pages of notes intricately interlinked. Of course some portion of that stuff is still on the laptop drive but I have ten months worth of new stuff and edits etc that exist only on my netbook--unless they were posted here or saved to a thumb which I did a few times with a few files.

Yes it is way past time to back up my files. I am still such a procrastinator at that task. I had better take this as a wakeup call to get on that pronto. Wish I still had the mental wherewithal to tackle it now as I've given Ed permission to install his game on here when he wakes up and to use it until I'm awake enough to want it back for something more than glancing at my email. He swears that installing and running the game will not put my netbook at risk of a crash and I've forbidden him to take it out on the porch.

I'm trying to reassure myself that that is good enough, that nothing will happen to my files before I'm awake enough to deal with the hours of file transfers involved in backing up my content. Last time it took 4 hours just to back up my graphics files and since then I've put in dozens more hours of scanning and who knows how many pics off my camera. Then there are ebooks and podcasts and music and audio books and programs.....

I guess it has to be good enough. Even if I can't relax about it I have to sleep. I've been awake for 20 hours so any attempt to do backups now would be as much if not more of a danger to my files than Ed running his game on here. That risk is probably more my imagination running amok than anything real so as long as he takes my injunction against taking it out on the porch to heart...


Thursday, October 21, 2010

Of Schedules and Dreams

da key 2 gud studee habitz  iz freekwant restings uv eyez

I spent several hours reading today and now my eyes are plotting their revenge. Study would be a more accurate word as I was reading NF related to prepping for my Nano novel. The story I have tentatively settled on has characters looking for white collar jobs so I'm reading Barbara Ehrenreich's Bait and Switch: The (Futile) Pursuit of the American Dream to get a sense of what is entailed in scouting for a corporate management level job.

Another beef my eyes have with me is that I'm trying to switch my hours back to waking before noon rather than near midnight. In pursuit of that goal I laid back down only six hours after waking at 10pm last night and then got up at 8am. I'm trying to make myself stay awake until Ed gets home sometime after 10pm (it was 12:30am last night) to have dinner with him and then plan to be asleep between 2 and 4 AM.

Just in time for the weekend. Ha. Joke's on me. Chances of a new sleep schedule surviving a weekend are slimmer than a child's sand castle surviving high tide. Or a dream the whack of a lamp on the back.

Well then, I'll just have to yank it back in place on Monday because the schedule I fell into in response to Ed going on swing shift was not working for me at all and I know it won't work for NaNoWriMo which is only ten days off now and for which I'm nowhere near as prepped as I'd like to be.


Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Rude Awakening

funny pictures of cats with captions
see more Lolcats and funny pictures

It wasn't the TV only my reading lamp but it was the cat.

I'm sure it was Merlin trying to drink out of my water tumbler near which hangs the cord to the lamp, who pulled the lamp down onto my back and head waking me from a deep dreaming sleep.

An hour later I'm still discombobulated. It doesn't help that it was after 10pm.

I hate waking up in the late evening which is where my hours have gravitated because of Ed's swing shift hours. 8pm to 1am are usually my most productive hours. But only if I've already been awake for six to eight hours. Because Ed is leaving for work after 3pm I began resisting sleep until after noon in order to be awake when he is both awake and home. But then I'm waking up after dark. He gets home around midnight now and we fix and eat and clean up dinner and it is twoish before he is asleep and I'm left with my crochet, books, videos, writing etc

The last week or so I started moving out of the room at night as I was too antsy to sit still in the small pool of lamp light until dawn. But it takes me half an hour to move out and set up in the living room and half an hour to movie back in. Sometimes I have to make that move back as early as 4:30 when one or the other of Ed's folks will wake.

This shift isn't working for me. I'm left feeling as though I have been clobbered by the TV


Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Bookmark Manic

Finally some pictures to illustrate what I've been doing and posting about for most of this month. Above you can see what I call a 'set' of the patterns and their variations done in two colors, solid or two-toned. In this case in Parakeet Blue and Golden Yellow. I started working the sets so I could increase the variety available in the various patterns. But I got so carried away pairing Parakeet aka bright turquoise with other colors I didn't notice how low it was getting. Now it is all but gone and the navy/turquoise and red/turquoise sets are each missing one or two pieces. There is probably enough on the tube to do one border and/or one set of tassels for one of the mini-scarves.

Is bright turquoise my favorite color or what.

Well I moved on to pairing orange with brown and black and pairing other earth tones in honor of fall and because I have a scarcity of earth tones in my collection.

Here you see all of the bookmarks made since late July. Except those dressed and given away immediately. The top two sections show the ones whose tails I tucked Sunday and Monday the bottom section shows those still needing tucked and blocked. Pretty much all of them need blocking. Only the Lizbeth Cordonet shown at bottom right holds its shape well and that even after being wadded up in the pouch I'd been keeping them in as they came off the hook. I hadn't tucked any tails since late July or early August and then only if the bookmark was designated for someone immediately.

There are eighty some altogether. I'd been estimating 100+. Note there are two tails for a single colored one and two tails for each stripe or other color change in the others. So an eleven stripe mini-scarf has 22 tails.

These are the clear plastic storage containers I'm keeping the undressed bookmarks in. I don't dress them anymore until they are designated for someone soon as they are too hard to store without rumpling them up again so that they need re-blocking and ribbons need ironing.

When I left for Longview in early July my entire set of undressed fit in that one container shown at top right. That container now holds all of the original pattern with the shell or granny square stitch. The four stacks left to right: black, white and earth tones; pastels; brights and darks; variegated. There are two of each color in my collection and I'm working on a third but only have a half dozen or so of them.

The larger box at left has the various two-toned short ones and the middle box at right has the multicolored long ones. The small box at bottom holds the miscellaneous threads and patterns--a few experimental pattens I've not repeated yet and threads in sizes bigger and smaller than 10. Before the Longview visit I had only a handful of such threads now I have over twenty I think but haven't counted them. If I started making sets with those threads like the one featured at top, this small box would overflow before the second set was complete. In fact it may fill up once I finish tucking tails as most of what you see in that wad in the middle picture is destined for this box. The box doesn't have a lid as it was nested inside the box on the left but will no longer fit in there. I guess I need to find a larger lidded box for them soon. Probably I need to find a bigger box for the shell pattern ones and move the misc into that one for now.

I'm sending for the crochet stitch bible from the library again soon to find a few new patterns to add to my repertoire. Soon after that there will need to be yet another box. :)

Today I switched back to working on the blue shawl for several hours, using over half of one of the two skeins we picked up at Michael's yesterday. You can see what it looked like before I started working on it today here. I didn't get a new picture of it as it is getting too long to get it all into a shot which I can light adequately. Unless I took it outside in the sun.


Monday, October 18, 2010



I have spent nearly every waking hour in the last week working with string--crochet thread or yarn. Mostly I was crocheting bookmarks with crochet thread but yesterday I started tucking tails on the dozens awaiting that tedious task. I worked at that for hours and hours Sunday afternoon and hours and hours more through the wee hours this morning. I was using a tapestry needle with an eye that was slightly too big to slip through the stitches with ease so I had to push and tug which began to bruise the thumb, index and middle fingers on my right hand.

This morning a visit to Michael's crafts where I found a slimmer needle and a thimble may have made the tail tucking task less dreaded if not less tedious.

The main reason for going to Micheal's though was to pick up two more skeins of the yarn I'm using in the shawl for my sister-in-law's Xmas gift. I used up the first two in about a week right after went shopping for it a month or so ago. I think two skeins got me half way not counting tassels so I'm probably going to need part of a third skein for the tassels.


Sunday, October 17, 2010

Sunday Serenity #200

so meny shelfs so litel tyme  i no can speed nap u kno

Having fun making LOLcats: kittehs + words+ laughter = the epitome of serenity.

da wurd r all belong 2 me.  dey be cost u 2 kibbles eech

wen u sed u shew me hites uv westrn lit dis not wut i spected


Saturday, October 16, 2010

String's the Thing

OOMMMMMMMM  I iz one wit da stringz

I've been so carried away with the crocheting this week that today I had trouble holding my coffee mug one handed. Yet still I crocheted five more bookmarkds today. The string accompanies me into my dreams.

Passed a milestone today: finished up first entire ball of 400+ yards of thread which was bought new since my bookmark making craze began a year and a half ago and which every inch went into bookmarks. The color was called Parakeet and was a bright turquoise. I'd been a bit obsesses this past month in finding color combos which included turquoise. I paired it with navy blue, yellow, red, kelly green, purple, black and white.

I had plans to pair it with orange, hot pink, burgandy,forest green,brown, bronze, melon, royal blue but they'll all have to wait until I get more Parakeet Blue. i was unable after more than half a year of looking to find any shade of turquoise in local stores so I'll probably have to order online again which I won't do until JoAnn's offers free shipping again as their normal shipping rates does not make the cost per ball economical enough to suit me.

I'm going through a kind of withdrawal from the Parakeet Blue, I couldn't decide at first what colors to move on to. I settled on earth tones--browns and greens. And various orange combos in honor of Halloween. The first one I made was chocolate brown with six different pastel stripes. Like a flowerbed. That was the first one over six inches before dressing with tassels or ribbons in a long while. I've given away all but a few of the long ones I've made so I need to build up that stock again.

The dressed bookmark stock is also depleted so I'm going to need to get the wardrobe out again soon. I haven't spread out the wardrobe--ribbons, thread, floss, buttons, beads etc.--since I brought it all in from the car and stowed it away in our room when I got home in late August. That will be a challenging task in a room shared with a cat. I'm not even sure it's doable.

I really need to get some pictures taken of what I've made since early August so I have them to illustrate posts like this.

I also need to get cracking on tucking the loose tails as I've done very little of that since I left Longview in August. I've got a collection of over a hundred bookmarks now with anywhere from 2 to 22 dangling tails. They've all been stored such that they are folded, wadded or scrunched so they are all going to need blocking as well.


Friday, October 15, 2010


sorreezzz.  u hava telz me  hao dis turnz out laterzzzzz

Ever since the read-a-thon finished last Sunday morning I've spent more time either trying to get to sleep or trying to wake up than in a productive mode. It usually doesn't take me that long to recover from the read-a-thons so it must be the swing shift factor.

All I know ar this moment though is that I feel sleepy and I don't want to fight it.


Thursday, October 14, 2010

Is It Safe to Peek Yet?

i fink i bout reddy 2 hide  dat storee b scarry

Ed got home early again tonight, interrupting me as I began working on my post--which was after 10pm not at 7:30 as the time stamp reflects as I kept loosing internet access the first time I started working on this draft which began as something quite different than what it is now.

We watched Quentin Tarrantino's Inglourious Basterds tonight. Or rather we watched the first hour of it before Ed fell asleep the first time. I woke him up but within half an hour he was out again leaving me alone with a story I'd rather not be watching alone--if at all.

Scarry isn't really the right word for it though. Repulsive fits better. But I'm having trouble deciding if the story itself is what is repulsive or the honest depiction of humans at their most inglorious. In spite of the fact that the WWII Nazi occupied Europe setting has been iconic in film for fifty years as the pitting of good against evil with the Nazis and their allies as unquestionably evil and everybody else as good.

I don't know if this was Tarrantino's intent but what I saw in this once I could see past the gory violence and the comic-book like plot was sociopaths pitted against sociopaths. Rage and vengeance was at the root of every character's motivation and all were equally guilty of taking pleasure in their enemies' pain and terror. No good can grow out of that. To represent either Shoshanna's or Lt. Aldo Raine's acts as heroism is no less propaganda than the Goebbels' film featured in the plot. What I'm trying to figure out now is whether that is the point Tarrantino is attempting to make or just my bias affecting my observation. Or alternately, is it an objective truth that Tarantino's story alludes to in spite of his intent?

Another thing I wonder is how it is possible to infuse such a story with humor and why, in spite of my revulsion I frequently laughed? Well snickered or snorted might be better words and it was more akin to sneezing than laughter as it was often as involuntary and seemed to require covering ones mouth.

I don't know. But I think I need to try to find something else to think about before it is time for me to sleep. Which I don't think I'll be doing before the sky looses its black.


Wednesday, October 13, 2010

Rapt in String

iz all rapt up n mai string nao.  ai plaz wit u laterz. ktnxbai

I was crocheting for hours today and completely lost track of time and the rest of the world. Remembered I still needed to post just in time to start a draft before midnight but had no chance to type a single letter before Ed got home with food to fix and things to share. By the time food fixings were put away and I'd cleared the bed of my string projects and moved them and my netbook and books out to the livingroom and Ed was zzzzzzzzzzzzzing it was past 2am.

I had been planning a post about the crocheted bookmarks for tonight but still haven't taken the pictures for it so instead I played around on until I found something fitting to caption.

Now I've got less than an hour before I may need to move my stuff back into our room and I still haven't got on the mini-tramp yet. Don't want to miss a night now as I'm trying to establish a habit and three days in a row isn't sufficient.

So 90% of the stuff I spent half an hour moving out here probably won't even get used before I have to schlep it all back.


Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Don't Be Afraid To Go There

---------------Don't be afraid to go there.
-------------------------------Harlan Ellison

I watched two movies today that stressed that as an essential element of writing.

This morning before sleeping I watched Freedom Writers, the story of Erin Gruwell a young teacher in Southern California who defied her school system's conventional wisdom that the at-risk students assigned to her were unteachable and her job was nothing more than to 'discipline' and 'warehouse' them until such time as they dropped out or reached graduation day or in many cases fell to the gang violence rampant in the area.

Not even allowed to give them textbooks or novels from the school's supply because 'the vocabulary is out of their reach and they would just damage or loose them anyway' she works two part time jobs to pay for books and field trips for them.

The lives of these kids, 14 and up, were unimaginable to this upper middle-class woman fresh out of college. They were growing up in what was essentially a war zone with blood feuds going back generations. Early on they let her know she had no right to demand respect from them since she knew nothing about them nor they about her on which to base the trust from which respect rises. So she gave them blank books and required they keep a journal, writing about their life past, present or future.

She made sharing the content of their books absolutely voluntary so they could be free to be brutally honest. Those who wished her to read their entries could leave their journal on the shelf of a cupboard she kept locked when not in the room. To her amazement the majority of them left the books for her. They were craving the ability to tell their stories; to make themselves known; to make themselves heard; to speak their truth. By giving them the power of their words she gave them the ability to re-create themselves, to re-envision their place in society, to counteract their despair with the confidence that there was after all a future for them beyond age 18.

In the process she turned this class of 30 odd students balkanized by their African American, Asian, Caucasian or Latino ethnic origins into a group who, by the end of the school year, self-identified as family.

Later their writings were compiled into a book, The Freedom Writers Diary. It became a bestseller and many school systems had it in their libraries and their curriculum since it was published in 1999. And many of them have faced challenges from parents, school boards and teachers who deemed it inappropriate material for children due to the graphic violence and language among other things they considered damaging for a 'child' to be exposed to. Ironic considering the fact that the stories had been written by 'children' the same ages as the 'children' these zealous keepers of the gate thought to protect so where was their umbrage and demands to remove those children from the lives they lived that no child should be exposed to?

Ah but then how could they have known if no one was telling the stories other than condescending journalists and sociologists and members of the legal system with their 'facts' and 'figures' and 'explanations' neatly wrapped in the contempt that is the birthright of the American middle class? But it takes as much courage for those sheltered middle class members to look unblinking at the raw reality of the lives depicted in that book as it took for those kids to tell the stories.

The most valuable lesson Erin Gruwell gave her students was that fear could be faced. By being willing to look straight on at whatever they wished to share with her she taught them how to 'go there'. There where the pain was. There where the fear was. There where the shame was. There where the disgust was. There where the anger was. And eventually, there where the love was. There where the hope was. There where the respect was.

After the DVD finished, I got on the library catalog and ordered both The Freedom Writers Diary and the memoir Erin Gruwell later wrote about the experience.

Then this evening I watched Dreams with Sharp Teeth streaming on Netflix, a documentary honoring the writer Harlan Ellison where he talked about the hard work that writing is because of the need to dredge the stories out of the depths of your own worst memories and nightmares. He bemoaned the tendency of much of the media from publishers to producers to shy away from depicting the gritty reality that life is. He said in effect that writers who can't confront conflict or continuously censor themselves out of fear of some future reader taking offense have no business in the business of writing. For the very purpose of art is to wake you up and show you yourself.

These two movies are part of my October revving up for NaNoWriMo. Besides refreshing my memory of the elements of craft by rereading Burroway's Fiction Writing and Ray's The Weekend Novelist among others, and prepping for the writing by making lists and sketches of scenes, characters, settings, related historical events, time lines, maps etc., I go looking for pep talks and advice on the process and purpose of writing stories.

I think today I have already found the motto that will see me through November:

Don't be afraid to go there.

Fear of conflict, confrontation and giving offense have been the primary self-censoring motives for me since I began writing at age nine. Whenever I was plagued by writer's block and could not attribute it to plain laziness or a perfectionistic fear of making a mess or making mistakes, it could be traced to one of those three.

Thanks Harlan Ellison for this timely sock in the kisser.


Monday, October 11, 2010

It's Monday, What Are You Reading? #20

I finally finished The Lacuna midway through the read=a=thon Saturday. Then eventually started listening to the audio of The Help which will probably occupy me most of this coming week. It is due at the library next Tuesday and is 15 CD and I'm only on the third.

The next test novel I pick up will be City of Tranquil Light by Bo Caldwell because it's a review copy.

I have 15 novels checked out of the library right now, 6 of which just renewed for their last three weeks. 7 are over 400 pages. 4 of those chunksters landed on my hold shelf last week because I forgot to set their activation dates to dole them out over three months after I went on an ordering spree.

I don't have room for them on the shelves so they are stacked on a ledge in front of a shelf that is ordinarily reserved for Merlin to sit and watch the birds and the neighbors cats. He has knocked such stacks off on me before so I really can't leave them there. The picture at right shows the stack of books that were that unintended flood last week sitting on the ledge which is about 18 inches above my pillow.
With NF sitting atop 4 fat novels.

Since then I pulled the fiction off the shelf by my desk to make room for the NF and now that stack is all novels and even taller. I need to winnow it severely. That is a daunting challenge. I was thinking of listing them all here and asking for input but I'm pressed for time now.

I already have the list of NF created in my read-a-thon post so I'll paste it in here as I will be spending significant time with many of them over the next weeks as I prep for NaNo:

Writing Fiction: A Guide to Narrative Craft by Janet Burroway Have read several times so will mostly be refreshing my memory of certain things. This is my fiction writing bible and I so wish I had my own copy but they run $80 new and the one time I found a used one in reasonably good condition it was $67. So I send for the library copy several times a year.
The Weekend Novelist by Robert J. Ray If I remember right, I quit this one last October at the point where talk of first draft shifted to talk of rewrites since I was looking for tips to get me through NaNo. I'll probably be focused on the same thing this time.

New Media ed. Albert Rolls -- essays on web based multimedia systems. There's a whole section on blogging!
Anatomy of Spirit by Caroline Myss

3 by Barbara Ehrenreich:
--Blood Rites: Origins and History of the Passions of War
--Bait and Switch: the (Futile) Pursuit of the American Dream
--This Land is Their Land

The Value of Nothing: How to Reshape Market Society and Redefine Democracy by Raj Patel
Math of Mystics: From the Fibonacci Sequence to Luna's Labyrinth to the Golden section and other Secrets of sacred Geometry byRenna Shesso For the Science reading challenge
Proust Was a Neuroscientist by Jonah Lehrer For the Science reading challenge
Ecology of a Cracker Childhood by Janisse Ray
Resurrecting Eve: Women of Faith Challenge the Fundamentalist Agenda by Roberta Mary Pughe and Paula Anema Schl For the Women Unbound reading challenge. I believe I all but finished this one last winter but that was over 9 months ago so I may have to restart it.
Sweet Swan of Avon: Did a Woman Write Shakespeare? by Robin P. Williams
Frida Kahlo: The Paintings by Hayden Herrera (A companion to Frida: A biography of Frida Kahlo, the basis for the Miramax film--which I watched last week because Frida and husband Diego Rivera were prominent characters in Kingsolver's The Lacuna So not specifically for NaNo tho it wouldn't surprise me if I figured out a way to make it relate since Friday and her art has made such an impact on me. I'm under her spell and I don't think it will lift anytime soon.)

Those are the library books these are a few off my own shelves which relate to NaNo prep in one way or another:

Jung and Tarot: An archetypal Journey by Sallie Nichols
Thinking Shakespeare: A how-to guide for student actors, directors, and anyone else who wants to feel more comfortable with the Bard by Barry Edelstein
Music, the Brain, and Ecstasy: How Music Captures our Imagination by Robert Jourdain


Sunday, October 10, 2010

Sunday Serenity #199

What better way to follow up on the read-a-thon in which the majority of the books I handled were library books than to celebrate libraries?

Hat Tip Bonnie


Saturday, October 09, 2010

My Brain on Books VII

<-- click the pic to learn about the Read-a-thon

I am reading for RIF today. I don't have a sponsor but I'm putting this plug at the top in hopes some who stop by will check out their site and see all the great things they do to foster love of reading in kids.

This post will be organized like a blog inside a blog with recent updates stacked atop previous ones.
I will post a notice at Twitter whenever I update this post. Or at least whenever I remember to. Be sure to scroll to bottom of this post. You won't be sorry.

Read with joy.

4:44 AM This is my wrap-up update. Will return to the audio of The Help as soon as I click publish. Am on disc 2 and have discovered I LOVE audio book now. Didn't care so much for being read to 10 years ago when I could still read faster than people talk. Don't know how much this enjoyment now is due to being able to rest my eyes, the comparison to the frustrating last hours of reading The Lacuna as my speed dropped from 50 to 30 pages an hour or, the superb quality of this audio reading. It has the quality of a stage play.

Finished one book today but had started it over a week ago. Read from page 417 to 762 of The Lacuna.

Read another 100 pages plus spread over a number of novels and NF while in a grazing mood. See NF list below.

Listened to 2 discs of The Help audio edition.

Succumbed to a 2hr nap attack and spent approximately an hour in snack prep overall. But was either reading, surfing other blogs, or prepping mini-challenges the other 21 hours.

1:45 AM
Susan of Scraps of Life has a mini challenge closing in fifteen minutes now which challenges us to read NF and blog about it. Since my last update featured just that I entered it. It's the only mini-challenge I've entered this time and probably will be the only as my heart is more in the stories than the activities this time.

OK my books are shelved and I'm getting ready to start The Help audio book I'll probably crochet as I listen to ensure I stay awake.

12 - 1 AM
Still browsing among my TBR as the clock shifts days. Five hours to go. My eyes are still discontent so I doubt I'm going to be able to do any more sustained reading.

Just for fun I'm going to list some of the NF I've been dipping into as I return them to there places. The fiction is already dealt with and the browsing of them only amounted to reading blurbs, covers and maybe the first page or two. All but one of the 17 novels were library books and my browsing of them was an attempt to decide which ones I will hang on to and which I'll send back to the library this week as I haven't the space to keep books I'm unlikely to be reading in the time allotted anyway. See, a couple weeks ago I accidentally set myself up to be flooded by my library requests as I forgot to reset the activation dates after ordering a slew so they all came inside a week when I'd intended for them to be doled out a few per week over 2 to 3 months.

Though I've decided to send back most of the novels (whether recent arrivals or not) I will go ahead and hang on to all the NF for now as most of them have specific uses for NaNo prep and or reading challenge fulfillment.

They are:

Writing Fiction: A Guide to Narrative Craft by Janet Burroway
The Weekend Novelist by Robert J. Ray
New Media ed. Albert Rolls -- essays on web based multimedia systems. There's a whole section on blogging!
Anatomy of Spirit by Caroline Myss

3 by Barbara Ehrenreich:
--Blood Rites: Origins and History of the Passions of War
--Bait and Switch: the (Futile) Pursuit of the American Dream
--This Land is Their Land

The Value of Nothing: How to Reshape Market Society and Redefine Democracy by Raj Patel
Math of Mystics: From the Fibonacci Sequence to Luna's Labyrinth to the Golden section and other Secrets of sacred Geometry byRenna Shesso
Proust Was a Neuroscientist by Jonah Lehrer
Ecology of a Cracker Childhood by Janisse Ray
Resurrecting Eve: Women of Faith Challenge the Fundamentalist Agenda by Roberta Mary Pughe and Paula Anema Schl
Sweet Swan of Avon: Did a Woman Write Shakespeare? by Robin P. Williams
Frida Kahlo: The Paintings by hayden Herrera (A companion to Frida: A biography of Frida Kahlo, the basis for the Miramax film--which I watched last week because Frida and husband Diego Rivera were prominent characters in Kingsolver's The Lacuna)

And since I spent significant browsing time with them here are two of my own books I'm about to reshelve:

Jung and Tarot: An archetypal Journey by Sallie Nichols
Thinking Shakespeare: A how-to guide for student actors, directors, and anyone else who wants to feel more comfortable with the Bard

I'm hoping that the nap plus several hours of browsing in multiple books has put enough of a lacuna of time between turning the last page of The Lacuna and submitting to a new story. Since I can't trust my eyes though I am going to begin the audio edition of The Help by Kathryn Stockett as soon as I finish shelving the books. I'll probably stay with it for the duration.

Four hours to go as I click publish on this update.

11:22 PM
I confess. I could not continue. At 8:30 I succumbed to a nap attack from which Ed roused me at 10:30 with a tall cup of coffee which I have been sipping as I browsed among the piles of books on the bed which I must now squirrel away in their niches and nooks as Ed will be crawling in on his side in the next hour.

6:44 PM
Finally! Have just turned the last page of The Lacuna. Obviously my pace slowed nearly to the rate of mudflow on a 2% slope. There was an hour's break to fix and eat a late lunch between 3:30 and 4:30 but most of the rest of the minutes between 2 and 6:40 I was either reading or pausing to put in eye drops followed by 30 seconds of lowered eyelids--little, lightless lacunae scooped out of the light.

I know. I did say I meant to switch to the audio edition of The Help if eyestrain ensued but I just had no heart for switching stories. I should have known better than to expect such of myself seeing how I can hardly bear to change channels mid commercial let alone mid movie or mid episode.

I may even have trouble switching over even now that the story is over. I feel the need to put some lacunae of time between those last pages and any new story. Maybe I can manage some NF and see if I feel different in an hour or two.

To tell the truth though I'd just as soon sit here and ruminate on The Lacuna. It is the type of story that needs ruminating. A lot of cud to grind and digest. If forced to choose between this story and The Poisonwood Bible as Kingsolver's best I'm not sure I could make the call lest it was by flipping a coin. Contemplating the two books I'm left wondering how long before someone nominates her for the Nobel Prize.

Well, I should wrap up this update and move on. I've been drawing it out as I dither over my choices so I could announce here my plans for the next hour but I can't settle. I think what appeals most is to graze among my various TBR. One of my favorite things to do is handle a large number of books in a short time, dipping in for small tastes of various dishes in the feast on the smorgasbord.

Yeah. That's what I'll do. It's probably the only thing that could keep me awake long enough for the next second wind to sweep over me. This is the first time out of my seven read-a-thons that I've begun to doubt my ability to reach the finish line this early. But only once did I not actually make it and even then I lasted until the last 30 minutes giving in only because hallucinating began to replace the author's actual words.

This time though the fact I've been awake 21 hours already combined with having recently fought a nasty bug may prove too big a hurdle.

Ummm. I think what I need to do RIGHT NOW is get up and move before I talk myself into giving up. It's a good thing I've got this bed covered in books so that it'll take 30 minutes minimum to clear it off....

1:11 PM
Well. Did not progress as far as I anticipated when writing the 10:10 AM update. Shortly after that I was hit with my first wave of the drowse. Not too surprising since I've been awake since 10:30 PM Friday night.

So I decided to check out the hub and see if any mini-challenges appealed. Two did. Both requiring pictures. But I fussed too long setting up the shots and composing my comments and post update etc and I missed the deadlines so I quit without submitting and headed to the kitchen for a snack and to reheat my coffee and a few minutes of chit-chat with my husband.

Then back to The Lacuna for an hour. Am now on page 595. So under 200 pages. My pace has slowed some from the 50 to 55 pages an hour of the first four hours this morning so I don't have an estimate at this time. And if my eyes don't improve after this brief respite I may have to give in to the audio book alternative even tho setting this book aside at this point would be torturous.

10:10 AM
I just spent twenty minutes on a comment on the hub blog and am anxious to get back to reading so I'm going to paste what I said there here. In answer to Trish's question as to where we're reading and how often we shift locations or positions:

Other than necessary nature calls I've left my spot on the bed propped by pillows only once since 5am and that was the only time I took the book with me--to stand beside the coffee maker in the kitchen reading until there was enough in the pot to fill my 16oz covered cup. That was at 7am.

I'm hoping I'll be able to sit outside this afternoon but there is a chance of rain so...

Meanwhile I sit here with a board across my thighs that holds a book easel which by turns holds the 762 page book or my netbook. Maybe once I finish this chunkster and can pick up something slimmer, it will make sense to shift positions or locations more often tho I also need to consider light source as the only one that matches or beats the LED lamp I'm using in or around this house is Mother Nature's own.

I'm estimating 4 more hours with Barbara Kingsolver's The Lacuna if I keep this pace and my eyes hold out. if my eyes rebel though I will switch to the audio of Stockette's The Help and maybe crochet bookmarks while I listen.
I'm on page 555 of The Lacuna. Counting only the actual minutes read I seem to be reading at a pace of 50 pages an hour which is how I got my estimate above.

7:07 AM
After approximately 90 minutes of reading I've reached page 485 of The Lacuna. Am going to take the book to the kitchen with me now and continue reading while a pot of coffee percolates (or whatever they call what it does in a coffee maker). I was trying to hold out until someone else in this household was up so I wouldn't be making just for me but I'm in dire need NOW and it shouldn't be long before my in-laws get up. Ed will be longer I hope as he didn't get to bed until after 2AM.

I think when I get back here with my coffee I'm going to put my earplugs in. I think I'd have made another twenty pages in those 90 minutes were it not for the logs being sawed in here.

5:05 AM
OK readers let's go!

I'm starting my day with Barbara Kingsolver's The Lacuna which I'm determined to finish this weekend as it is a library book which was due last Monday. I am on page 417 of the 762 page large print edition.

One of the factors in it taking me so long to read this book which I started two weeks ago was the temptation of Netflix streaming. I have made a firm commitment to leave Netflix alone for the next 24hrs though.

But one of the factors making Netflix so tempting was the tendency of my eyes to fatigue more easy than usual since the onset of the cold a couple weeks ago. But I have two options to get me over that. One is to switch to Kathryn Stockett's The Help on audio. 15 CDs at 77 minutes each for the most part.

I generally don't like to have two fiction stories going at the same time but I'll make an exception today if need be.

The other option is to open one of the e-books I have on my netbook and enlarge the font to my satisfaction.

And then of course there is the surfing other reader's blogs and mini-challenges...

So that's my plan. And I'm off. Harrison Shepherd here I come.

4:44 AM
This is set to autopost at 4:44 AM. Hope to add update above this line by 5:05

C'mon now!


Friday, October 08, 2010

Library Loot: October 6 to 12

Library Loot is a weekly event co-hosted by Claire from The Captive Reader and Marg from The Adventures of an Intrepid Reader that encourages bloggers to share the books they’ve checked out from the library. If you’d like to participate, just write up your post-feel free to steal the button-and link it using the Mr. Linky any time during the week. And of course check out what other participants are getting from their libraries!

Marg has Mr Linky this week.

I'm going to be very lazy with this post as the read-a-thon is only hours away and I still have so much I'd like to do beforehand. Including maybe getting some more sleep? With my husband on swing shift my hours have shifted to where I'm laying down between 8 and 10 AM so it is going to be hard to shift to waking up before 5AM with enough sleep garnered to see me through a full 24 hours. To make it even harder I had a doctor appointment this afternoon and so lay down at 5am to wake at noon to get ready. I'm hoping to lay down again within an hour or two and sleep until Ed gets home between 10PM and midnight and then aim to stay awake for the next 29 hours. Maybe starting the read-a-thon with 5 hours of awakeness behind me will even be a blessing as I do not transition from sleep to alert quickly. It can take over four hours.

So, anyway. That's why I'm going to display my library loot via a couple of pictures and screenshots with possibly a brief comment or two.

This is a picture of the stack of books Ed brought home from the library on Thursday. They were all for me. Even the two on his card.

I didn't intend for all of these to come in at once. When I went on my ordering spree on the online catalog a couple weeks ago I intended to go into my account after and dole them out over a couple months at 3-5 every other week.

I forgot.

Oh well. More fodder for the read-a-thon. Especially the shorter NF which sit atop the four novels.

To see the titles you can't make out in the photo, I've taken screenshots of the list on my account page.

The fiction are either the titles I've seen in online reviews or something by the same author.

The NF are in three categories: titles that fulfill one or more of the reading challenges I'm in; titles related to research for my potential NaNo novel; and titles relating to writing fiction and/or research also in honor of NaNo

I had tapped out my requests so when I just had to send for somethings about Frida Kahlo after watching the movie on Netflix streaming the other night I tapped into Ed's card. There were seven or more things I wanted to send for but since it was Ed's card and I knew I was about to be flooded with eleven or more items this week, I limited myself to two. One a novel in which Kahlo is featured and the other featuring pictures of her paintings with commentary on them and her life story.

This is a picture of the shelf containing most of the previously checked out books. It was the only shelf in the room I was able to empty of other books and things after my return from Longview in August and finishing the unpacking the first week of September.

On the far left you can see a piece of the stack featured in the first pic above. It sits on a board that was set between the stacked bookshelves to form a ledge for Merlin to sit and look out the window.

My pillow is right under that ledge and at least twice Merlin has knocked books I've left there off while I was sleeping. Once it was a stack similar to this one. So it was risky leaving them there last night. I need to find another option to see me through the weekend after which I'm probably going to send back the majority of the novels to send for them again at a more reasonable pace. My fall fiction binge is coming to an end as I gear up to prep for NaNo as soon as I recover from the thon next week.

I stopped in the midst of preparing this post to get that long nap before Ed got home from work. Now there is just three hours before it starts. I'm dithering as to whether to spend it reading or to watch a movie and/or TV episodes on Netflix.

First I need to prep my Read-a-Thon post which as usual will be organized like a blog within a blog with new updates to my status stacked atop the previous.


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