May 7, 2012

There was a thing, and I fixed it!

I made a thing! Altered a thing! Whatever. I did something productive with fabric! Yay!

My lovely mentor-lady gave me a trunkful of clothes. Quite literally: the trunk of her car was full of wearable treasures. It was quite possibly the most beautiful thing I’ve ever seen. So, like the broke college student I am, I thought: FREE STUFF! and promptly took as much of it as I could. One of the treasures was a yellow shirt from Loft that had a really interesting neckline, but was several sizes too wide and also managed to have sleeves that were not only too wide, but also too short. (How do clothing manufacturers do that, by the way? One would think sleeve length would grow proportionately to size. I wonder this about pants’ lengths, too.)

So I thought, good opportunity to try chopping things up and then sewing them back together again! (Or, in fancy-pantsy sewing terms, “alterations”.) This I proceeded to do…after some frustration. To prevent similar frustration in your future, should you decide to turn your hand to altering clothing, here’s a handy-dandy equation for you:

Scissors + too much coffee + side seams – proper pinning = DOOM, where doom = a gaping wound in a pretty shirt.

I said, “Curses!” and then I said curses, and then I walked away from it for a few days, swearing a vow that next time…NEXT TIME…I would be victorious.

Then today I finished my homework early, thank you universe, and decided to tackle it again. Several more gaping wounds later (all in the shirt, don’t worry – although it was a near miss), I now have a shirt that fits me! And it was free! And I made it (kinda!).

Unfortunately, I forgot to take pictures of the process to share with you, interwebs. And after an extensive search of the internet (read: 30 seconds spent scrolling through the LOFT website), I can’t find a picture of the shirt pre-resurrection. But! Pics of the resurrected product will be forthcoming as soon as I get off my butt and take them.

Also, um, hello again. It’s been a while. 🙂

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March 1, 2012

wordless(ish)

I’m finding myself wordless quite often lately. It’s not precisely a bad thing, just…unusual. M

February 5, 2012

Not S.A.D., just reading.

On this lovely sunny Sunday, I’m sitting here on one of the many sofas in the living room, contemplating the pursuit of life, love, and chocolate.

By which, of course, I mean I’m thinking about Valentine’s Day.

Last year my boyfriend-at-the-time and I watched 500 Days of Summer with a friend as an anti-Valentine’s movie, because *spoiler alert!* the guy doesn’t get the girl in the end. We exchanged neither cards nor gifts. It was, no joke, the best Valentine’s Day I’ve had in years.

This year is going to be different. I’m going to be all productive (ahahahaaaa, funny) and MAKE things for people. I swear. It’ll be awesome. And I’m going to buy myself a brand-new book, which I almost never do because a) used book stores are the eighth (or ninth, depending on your opinion of Nutella) wonder of the world, and b) i has no moneys for new books. Except for Very Special Occasions, which are completely arbitrary events decided entirely by me. AND THEN, interweblings, I will curl up with my book and READ IT. There will definitely be fuzzy blankets and chocolate involved, possibly of the hazelnut-flavored variety. (The chocolate, not the blankets. Probably.)

None of this Singles Awareness Day nonsense for me. I’ll have a book to read. I was thinking this one:

The Night Circus, by Erin Morgenstern. I’ve been wanting to read it for a while. If anyone has any other/better/more fantabulous suggestions, I’d welcome them. I’m keeping an open mind.

January 20, 2012

A change of plans, but not of heart.

I’ve been thinking lately…

Now, before you run screaming for the hills, let me just clarify that my plans for world domination are nowhere near ready for implementation. Feel better? Maybe a little? Okay, good.

Besides the usual scheming and dreaming, my little grey cells have been occupied lately with contemplation of this self-imposed singleness situation. Trying to protect myself from being hurt – or from hurting others – I put up barriers, I made loud protestations, I imposed arbitrary schedules…and in the meantime, I forgot to take into account some very important things.

One big reason is that in trying not to think about relationships or dating or romance, I’ve…well, been thinking about relationships and dating and romance more than I would otherwise. Effectively, I’ve made the idea into a bigger distraction by attempting to ignore it. It’s like a nightmare about, say, a giant carrot chasing you around your old elementary school (oh come on, don’t tell me all your dreams make sense). You wake up terrified, your heart pounding, and you cannot get the image of that menacing carrot out of your head. The more you try not to think about it, the clearer the picture becomes, until you’re curled into the fetal position under your blankets, swearing that as God is your witness, you’ll never eat carrots again.

That’s how I’ve been feeling. Well, something like that. Less with the terror and the vegetables, but you get the idea.

Matters came to a head on Sunday night, when I was rather forcefully reminded that in this equation of me + life – relationships = personal gain, I kept subtracting God as well.

If I believe that God has a plan for me, then how can I think I could schedule my future down to the minute? If I accept that God’s intentions towards me are honorable, then who am I to sit here in my self-righteousness and say, “No thanks, Almighty Creator of Everything Ever. I think I’ll set my own deadlines, Omnipotent and Omniscient God, for obviously, of the two of us, I am the one most qualified to know these things.”

You guys, I can’t even blow my own nose right now (thanks to a sparkly new piercing). I barely know what I’m doing next weekend, or what to do with the degree I’ll get in a year or two, and I have no bloody clue what my life will look like at that time, much less in five years, or (heavens!) fifteen.

So the upshot of all this is that this whole year of no dating thing is actually doing me more harm than good. It’s a distraction from important things, like friendship and classes and family. It’s also a distraction from non-essential but still amazing things: hysterical giggling fits with Christine, long talks about everything with Amber, coffee with Lily, saying the exact same thing as J.T. five times a day…

I need to focus on these good things. Putting up walls around my heart is all well and good, but ignoring the giant carrot isn’t going to make it go away, and I just can’t be having with those sorts of shenanigans. I still don’t want to date anyone, and I’m certainly not looking to fall in love. I want to be young and have fun and love my God and hug my friends and call my family, and I want to do all this and still be open to God’s plan for me.

As the oft-quoted song says, I don’t want to miss a thing.

December 13, 2011

A blue(ish) Christmas

Listening to Christmas songs on the radio has always been a staple of the holidays for my family. My mom and I used to wait so impatiently for the day after Thanksgiving, so we could begin playing the Christmas music. My favorite songs were all over the board – from What Child is This to You’re A Mean One, Mr. Grinch. There was no discernible pattern, no real tie between them, except that they were all joyous celebrations of the season. No sad Christmas carols for me, no sirree. My Christmases were never blue, my heart always perfectly intact for the dawning of a new year.

Decorations of red on a green Christmas tree
Won’t be the same if you’re not here with me

This is the first Yuletide in quite a few years – six, I think – that I haven’t been in a relationship of some kind. One of those Christmases, I was dating someone long-distance, but there was still a voice on the other end of the line – or rather, a face in the Skype window.

And when those blue snowflakes start falling
That’s when those blue memories start calling…

The other night, I had a long conversation with a friend who has never really dated before. I know Christmastime can be lonely for him, too – he mentioned how very quiet his apartment was, with his roommate gone. I’m wondering, though, if the holidays are more difficult for people who have never dated, or for those of us who have. We who have experienced the whirlwind of young love, or first love, or any love at all…we know precisely what we’re missing, when twilight comes earlier and lights twinkle from windows and snow starts to fall. I find myself turning, blindly reaching for a nebulous someone, a presence that has been there in one form or another since I was in my teens.

I am happy these days, with my decisions, my independence. Every now and again, though, my contentment’s disturbed by just a touch of melancholy, as the cold winter stars gleam over the valley and the midnight train whistles mournfully in the distance.

I understand, now, the feeling behind those lonely Christmas songs.

December 7, 2011

Quote of the Week

Stephen Chbosky, The Perks of Being a Wallflower:

And I thought that all those little kids are going to grow up someday. And all of those little kids are going to do the things that we do. And they will all kiss someone someday. But for now, sledding is enough.

I think it would be great if sledding were always enough,

but it isn’t.

December 6, 2011

Rated GI, for General Incoherence.

You know, I envy people who can just word-vomit their thoughts onto a screen and then click “Publish” and not give a damn who reads it, or how other people might react.

I want to be able to say over-dramatic things like “My heart, it is breaking” and “The nostalgia, it is killing me” and “BOYYYYYZ they are STOOOPID” without having to explain myself. I took an extensive poll (read: asked Jordan and Mara) about whether I should acquire a Twitter account, in order to post said melodramatic statements in relative anonymity, but apparently Twitter is even worse than Facebook in the people-having-an-opinion respect.

FIRST WORLD PROBLEMS, kids: I have them.

In other news: Christmas! It’s awesome, and it’s 19 days away! I have this urge to make a paper-chain countdown calendar thingy, but I’m lacking in both red and green papers. Perhaps when I get home for Christmas later this week.

Here, have a lovely Austenesque Christmas scene which I have hijacked from my friend Lily’s awesome tumblr:

 

And to conclude: Despite what you may have heard, you are all, in fact, beautiful and unique snowflakes.

December 5, 2011

Quote of…um, Last Week

by Zadie Smith, from White Teeth:

What was it about this unlovable century that convinced us we were, despite everything, eminently lovable as a people, as a species? What made us think that anyone who fails to love us is damaged, lacking, malfunctioning in some way? And particularly if they replace us with a god, or a weeping madonna, or the face of Christ in a ciabatta roll – then we call them crazy. Deluded. Regressive. We are so convinced of the goodness of ourselves, and the goodness of our love, we cannot bear to believe that

there might be something more worthy of love than us, more worthy of worship.

 

November 30, 2011

All the poems.

Here, have some poems. Lots of poems. All free verse, because that’s how I roll, yo. Old ones, new ones…some I like and some I don’t, particularly. But here you go anyway.

Escape

the warm smell of asphalt under our tires
as the yellow lines fly past,
as the past flies out the open window.
we don’t owe each other anything,
this time,
and the freedom of the road overcomes the fear of falling.
 
~

i dreamed of you last night

you + me, in a car,
holding hands.
the sun’s dipping over the horizon,
the sky’s painted in golds and pinks and deep, deep blue
and we’re not kissing
but we might as well be.
 
~

you (don’t) know who you are

My name is heartbreaker,
yellow sun.
You must be lonely tonight,
or I wouldn’t have crossed your mind.
Do you hear the birds singing,
when we walk together?
Do you see the treetops swaying in the breeze?
Or can you, like me, hear only the words we speak,
see only our faces, our together-beauty?
 
~

Happily (we hope) Ever After

Once upon a time,
there was a princess.
(She may have been in a tower –
the details are unclear.)
Of course she was beautiful.
Of course she was kind.
Of course she was loved.
She leaves the safe castle, or possibly tower –
(i know, silly girl, but otherwise
there wouldn’t be much story, you see) –
and she makes her way into the dark forest.
Somehow she finds danger.
(It doesn’t find her. She’s a princess,
not a damsel.)
She dances with danger.
A tango, probably.
Maybe a foxtrot. You never know.
Of course she comes out unscathed.
 
And of course there’s a handsome prince,
who rides up on his white horse,
waving his gleaming sword.
Of course he’s charming.
(Charm comes easily,
when one’s entire life is politics and tact.)
But – spoiler alert! – here’s where our tale
diverges.
 
The princess looks at the prince.
He smiles toothily. She can almost see the trademark glimmer.
He squares his shoulders. She can see how strong he is.
He offers her, loudly, his kingdom and his heart.
She can see her future in his sapphire-blue eyes:
a cold castle, children left to a nurse’s care,
heavy velvets, false smiles, stone walls.
 
The princess turns her head
and there’s danger, watching her.
It raises one sardonic eyebrow,
and it holds out a long-fingered hand.
She laughs,
and takes its arm,
and together they whirl down a new path.
 
 
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November 23, 2011

Multifaceted.

Another one, slightly updated, from Boulder.

NOVEMBER THE TWENTY-THIRD

Today I am devil in a blue dress.
Today I am skilled labor,
creatrix,
loved
and loving,
whistler of a happy tune.
Yesterday I was a gray bird in a gray tree under a gray sky
with no voice to sing.
Tomorrow, perhaps, I will be:
river-goddess
singer of a thousand songs
eater of hearts
consumer, both of the cultural and the cinnamon-roll variety.
 
The next day, I will be
adventurer
flyer
at-home daughter
Mademoiselle Patience
giver of heart-gifts
and maker of poems.
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