Mar. 11th, 2016 03:15 pm
la_belle_laide: (issues)
When I started writing this, it was still March 10th. Ugh how is it past midnight. I'm going to have to go to bed and finish this tomorrow.

I'm having a moment, because my FB memories came up today and showed that it was this day in 2009 that Haku had his first surgery. And of course it was, because he had that first seizure around March 8th, the day my Gran started to go downhill really fast. I remember that day—that minute—so clearly because, looking back, it seems like my entire life split into two sections the moment Haku jumped up and had that first seizure. Then he went into the hospital. Then Gran went into the hospital and then she died in April. And then my Dad died in August.

And I've been reading all of my old LJ entries from that Spring and Summer, trying to see if there were any signs, or if I had any intuitions that would have told me just how drastically things were going to change. And the disturbing thing is, I feel like I did. Because a few times I wrote “I wonder what will be different this time next year” and “I wonder who will be new to me and who will be gone (no one, I hope!)” or variations on those themes.

And that day started the entire Trauma Conga Line, where everyone in the family was like, “Okay, enough – that really has got to be the end of the bad stuff, right?” And it wasn't, and then my Dad died.

So, now Lao Shir has died, and Haku had surgery on the same exact day that he did in '09, and I am sitting here losing my mind thinking, “This is how it starts.” I can't stop imagining that, a few years down the road I'll be reading this entry, tsk'ing over my clueless past self who had no idea how bad it was going to get.

Doesn't that sound neurotic? It does, but here's something I wrote shortly after my Dad died:

It's real hard going back and reading journal entries from even just a few weeks ago, harder to read the ones from a month ago. I can hardly fathom that I was happy back then; that I had no clue whatsoever what was right around the corner. Still sad for losing Gran, I was also getting on with it, doing my schoolwork, excited about writing, getting ready to go to China, doing Hula shows with my friends and having a spectacular summer.

I always knew—and feared—that life turns on a dime. But knowing something is entirely different from living it. When you live it, you come to see the world differently; someplace that is not safe, where the worst possible scenario is indeed around every corner and behind every door. You start to expect nothing less. I sort of knew it ten years ago when Grampa died suddenly and with no warning, and I always dreaded it ever happening again, but this illogical part of me thought, “Well, that already happened once. What are the chances?” I thought that the fears I always had that every phone call, every noise, every slamming door was the worst thing I could imagine were irrational fears and I was neurotic. But I wasn't neurotic; I was correct.

“I wasn't neurotic, I was correct.” That's how I feel now, like I'm right, and it just has to keep getting worse, until something unthinkable happens. There's that part of me that's like, “Well, now that I've put it out there, it can't, right?” And the other part that says, “OMG, now I've put it out there, that's like inviting it.” There's the rational part that says, “Don't be a twit, you literally have no control over anything,” but the rest of my brain tells that zen bitch to take every seat in the house, because that's exactly the problem.

(Of note: I realized while peeing today that my novel is pretty much about this fear. Main Character is so much of a fearful f'ing control freak that he can't accept that some things are out of his hands. He takes it to the extreme and changes things on a like, 4th dimension level because he has lost the ability to can when it comes to reality and death. Oh my god. he is my fantasy of my most fearful and most powerful self. Jeez.)

And yes, I know that I should probably be talking to someone about this, you know, someone who is not LJ and who is a professional, but the one therapist I contacted, though she seemed nice, worked out of a clinic that got into huge trouble because the main doctor was dealing drugs out of there, so. And like, what is a therapist going to tell me that I don't already know? It's not in my control. The intrusive thoughts aren't rational. Blah dicker blah. But are they really irrational? Because past experience says “No, you're on the right track here, and terrible things are about to happen.”

What also sucks is that I feel like I'm short-changing Lao Shir out of the mourning she deserves, because I'm too busy being afraid of how much worse things are going to get, that it's overshadowing how much I actually miss her. Right before she died, we were FB messaging about how we were going to get together for lunch once she was out of the hospital. I asked if I could send her anything: books, music, a gift card for some movies she could watch on her phone. But she said that, with all the tests she was having, she hardly had time to read or watch anything. But that she would love some flowers. So I sent her flowers, the kind you can take home and plant. (They got lost in the mix and she never got them.) A few days before she died, I sent her a link to the “Girl On Fire” video because, I said, it made me think of her. She never answered and I started to worry.

I had called Gold Dragon to tell him she was in the hospital (he's not on FB) and he kept saying, “It's terrible she's in the hospital, but remember, she's the strongest person we know. She's beaten everything else, and she'll beat this, too.” When I called him to tell him she had passed, he was honestly thunderstruck. And angry. He really thought she was coming home. We all did.

One time, Gold Dragon and I were talking about Lao Shir, one of those times when the cancer had returned, and he had just seen her for lunch a few weeks before. He said he knew she was going to beat it again, because, “it's the light in her eyes, or something about how they shine. Her eyes are really bright.” That really stuck with me. I told her, next time I saw her, of his comment, and she was so pleased. After that, we called her Alohilani: Heavenly Light. She thought that was delightful.

And now we're talking about what to wear to her memorial, since we're going together, and maybe Empress too – should we wear our Kung Fu clothes to honor her? Should we be formal? Do we bring food, who else will be there, who else will show up in Kung Fu clothes, do we bow like in class? Or what? And it boggles my mind—and my heart—that we have to consider these things now. She was supposed to come home. She was going to go back to teaching T'ai Chi.

This was maybe coming for a long time. She had multiple myeloma, diagnosed ten years ago. Usually with that, you get about a year, maybe two. She got ten. But in those ten years, I think we all thought, “Obviously she keeps winning the battle.” It was heart failure, though, this time. At 60, so, you know: very young.

* * *

Okay so I wrote that last night, and I'm trying to see if, by the light of day, this looks any different. Kind of, maybe. Like, rationally, I realize that Haku has actually had 8 surgeries, and only one of them (the one on March 10th) was followed by that entire “life falling apart / death and mourning” year. All the other ones were just bank-breaking. Thinking of it that way really doesn't make the anxiety up and quit, but it takes the edge off, I guess. I'm always, always worried about losing my Mom. And since having Callum, thinking of that kind of thing is a place I really bar myself from going. My brain kind of can't – but it always lurks there like background radiation. For any parent, I guess.

I know that Haku doesn't have a long time after something like this. I visited him today and talked to one of the vets. While all the others were like, “Well, let's wait to see the biopsy,” she said, “Yeah, we're pretty sure it's cancer.” It remains to be seen if it's the really aggressive kind that only gives you a few more months, or if it's the slower kind. It's so obvious to me that it started last July. I kept bringing him to the vets every month, but his blood tests were consistently awesome and no one could feel anything in there. Except me; I felt it all the time, every time I pet him. No one else did, though.

And Sano is 15 ½. So like, I get it; I know my dogs won't be around forever or even for a few more years. That time of not having to think about it is over.

So I don't know, this whole thing has me so anxious and depressed. I'm reading back through all of my 2009 entries, when Haku and Sano got sick, and Gran died, and my Dad died, and my one brother got sick and my uncle died and then my other brother got cancer (but he's better now.) (Although, sadly we don't really talk anymore.) And I just kept saying, “I wish something good would happen!”

And like, so many good things did happen, and it's not like I didn't notice them. I mean, HUGE things happened, like Callum, and getting an agent that I like; things I've wanted since forever have happened in the last 3 years. So I'm not ungrateful, I just wish I could kill this anxiety that the worst possible thing is around every corner.

Another thing I keep noticing in those entries is how much Kung Fu helped me. Like, so much. Kept me sane on some days. I miss it unbearably, and nothing has come along to take its place. (And I can't afford to join any program either, anyway, so.) I mean, I miss my KF family and I really wish it could be like that again, all of those people I loved and still love (and still see, semi-regularly, too. But we're not together 2 times a week, like we were.) It's not like i'm the only one who left the kwoon, and I can just go back, even if I could afford it. Everyone left. There's no one left there out of our group. I keep telling Gold Dragon, “Please decide to teach Kung Fu, please open a school!” only half joking. But, you know, real life.

Whew, what an entry. I hate that I just dumped all of this out. This is not what I wanted for my LJ, so much angst.

And as usual, I really should wrap this up because it's about time for Callum to get up. Well, 3:30 or 3:45 or so, but I still have a few things to do while he's sleeping.

So yeah, sorry for popping on randomly and spilling nothing but neuroses!
la_belle_laide: (mantis)
Wow so here I was going to revitalize my LJ, and really keep on top of updating it, and then I just let it sit for another few months. Sorry about that.

Anyway so yeah. Signed with the agent I really liked, waited for the revision suggestions to come in, and then got right to work. She sent them right before we went to Florida, but I got a good chunk done before, and finished up the rest the week after we got home. The week I came home, my agent moved from Sterling Lord Literistic to Donald Maass. I think that's pretty great, actually. Well, both are great, and like I told her on the phone, I was looking for an agent more than an agency.

I tried to send my revisions four times over the last week, but my email is for some reason effed up, and I had to drop box them to her yesterday. So now she has the revised version, and for some reason I'm sweating that more than when she read the manuscript for the first time. Because, what if I made it worse? What if I did the revisions and she reads them, and they're essentially first drafts of new chapters? (Well, not chapters, but a section here and there.)

So nervewracking.

But yeah, in the meantime, we did go to Florida, too: Me, my Mom, Callum and Meghan. We stayed at Port Orleans and we didn't rush anywhere or have to do anything specific and it was super nice like that. I mean we did have some fast passes, and it does limit you to which park you're going to be at any given day. I do sort of miss the times when you could be like, “Ehh, let's go to Epcot today instead,” but if you do that now, you miss your, like, ONE CHANCE to ride that ride you want to get on.

Callum went on his first rollercoaster! It was Barnstormer and he LOVED it. Laughed the entire way through, starting from when it begins its climb to the first drop. But then again, he loved the stupid airplane, too. Giggled and shouted “WEEEEE!” through the ascension. He kept looking at me and saying, “CAM-CAM!” Like, “Look, it's ME, Cam-cam, going way up in the sky!” In fact, a few weeks ago he even told me, “Cam-cam gonna go to work.”

“Work?” I said. “You have a job now?”

“Yey-uhh. In a few months.”

“I see. And what are you going to do at your work?”

“Cam-cam going to drive the airplane.”

Not even two and a half and he wants to be a pilot. He woke up this morning and said to me, first thing, “Cam-cam on the airplane. Way high up up up in the sky!” Which I guess means that he's still dreaming about it. So weird, toddler brains.

But yeah, he went on Barnstormer and he loved it. He loved all the rides, even the Haunted Mansion, and the parade, (“Woooow Mommy-and-Grammom-and-Momo, wook at DIS!”) but was less than thrilled with the characters. Which, I'm not too wild about those, either.

It also rained and stormed every day. In fact we got stuck in tropical Storm Erika's path, and our landing when we came in was delayed for like 3 hours. We had to circle Orlando forever before they decided to land us in Tampa, and then take off again to go to Orlando. That was the beginning of The Trip Of Wait, because every single day another thing went wrong where we got held up doing this or that. They even had us in the wrong hotel room when we got there. :/

But even with all of that, it was still such an excellent trip. So now we're actually thinking about going in on a Disney Vacation Club kind of dealie thing. You pay monthly for 5-10 years, and you get allotted a certain amount of points per year, and you can use them to stay in the villas. You also get discounts on annual tickets and dining. Getting it via resale saves thousands of dollars. And like, I know, those thousands of dollars we'd still be spending could be going in the bank, but honestly, now that I have a kid, I can't see just saying “Well, we're not going to Disneyworld anymore.” We're all pretty much going to keep going. Like, Meghan is 23 and Spencer is 26 and they've been going since they were 2, and they're also not going to stop. Same with Chrissie and Timmy and the kids. And every few years, you save up enough points to use a big villa where the entire family can stay; sleeps up to 12 or something. IDK, I'm thinking about it.

Well, tomorrow is Autumn, and I have to say, it's been such a beautiful summer that I'm anxious thinking that something has got to go wrong. (Well, to be fair, Sano and Haku got mad sick from their food, starting the day before we left for Disney. Tons of meds later and they are both fine, though the food wrecked their delicate intestines so much that they are on Tylan powder for life now.) I mean yes, something always goes wrong and nothing is ever perfect, but sometimes it feels so perfect that I'm like, What's going to happen to balance this out? Every week this summer we went to the ocean. I have this awesome little kid and an awesome literary agent and a job I enjoy. Isn't that just too much good?

But yeah, Autumn, though. Every year I'm always so sad when summer ends, but then I love Autumn, too. It's really just winter I can't deal with. Well, really just January and February, and that's only because we've gotten killed the last three years, with blizzards upon blizzards. I can't even deal with that. And having to stay in the house at night instead of going on a long walk and then sitting on the deck, enjoying the last rays of sun until 8 PM. God, winter is so hard! Ugh.

Here are some things I:m looking forward to:

Getting the next round of revisions done and going on submission. Rad.

Teaching some Hula classes at work. In Florida, I spent some time with Auntie Kau'i and she was like, “Are you dancing and teaching?” I told her it had been a while and she said, “You have to get back to it. Start over and don't stop again.” And I really, really want to, but it's so hard to find a space where you can just get a group of people together and dance. Now I have that opportunity at work and I can't wait to start.

Halloween, naturally. And the holiday season after that. I'm one of those fools who really loves the stupid holidays. All the lights and music and crap. I can't get enough of that.

Umm, and new TV shows. Isn't that awful and so dull of me? But I really like Sleepy Hollow.

And after that, next Spring, LOL. Winter is just long, dark, boring, depressing and pointless. And frigging cold and frustrating and icy.

Hmm, I don't want to speculate on anything else. In 2008 I cheerfully wrote in my LJ, “I wonder what will happen this year, and how much will be different next year!” And in 2009 my Gran and my Dad both died. Which I know has nothing to do with how I effing phrased things for pete's sake but anxiety is a bitchass!

Well, now I've still got about 45 minutes left of Callum's nap, so I'm going to sit down and read the new version of [Bad username or site: ”spatterdash” @] 's wonderful novel.

And then wake Callum, take the dogs out, and IDK, go out for pizza. Maybe a walk later with Callum, Mom, Momo, Chrissie and her boys. (Oh wait no, I tell a lie, Momo gets home late tonight. Walk tomorrow then, when she's off from school.) And perhaps a bar of ice cream later.

This summer has been one of the best ever, and I'm going to miss it. Here's to an Autumn that's just as rad.
la_belle_laide: (WWJD?)
Two days ago I wrote this really loooooong post about how I was so frustrated with querying and writing new stuff, that I was about ready to just give it up and go back to writing fanfic for good. Why bother, if I wasn't getting anywhere and never getting any better? The post was full of angst and this really hopeless self-doubt about my writing. I read it back and thought, Wow, that is super angsty, hold back on posting that so you don't flounce out of something and then change your mind and feel stupid later.

Yesterday I got an email from the latest agent I queried, to whom I had sent first a partial, then the full manuscript. She is really interested, and wants to talk to me about the novel, and anything else I have lined up for the future. Our call is set for 2:30 tomorrow afternoon.


So now it's my turn to tell other authors to not give up/ :)

Of course, you know, it might not work out. Maybe we'll talk on the phone and have completely opposite visions about what to do with this book, or different ideas about my career or writing in general, or maybe we won't click. But, I did get referred to her by another agent, one whom I like very much and she thought we'd be a good fit. So, I'm hopeful.

I mean, hell, I'm way more than hopeful right now; I'm peeing my brand new Target shorts as we speak, have been peeing since last night and will not stop peeing, IDK, probably ever. The Call, you know? It's kind of huge! It gets capital letters when writers talk about it.

So now I'm writing down a list of questions and things to say. If I like her a lot and she likes me, then I'll have to email other agents who have partials (and who have queries, too? I'm not sure?) with a nudge, tell them, Hey, I've had an offer, JSYK. It's the polite thing to do. I have massive phone anxiety, especially with important calls. I stutter and say really dumb things sometimes (and then freak out about the things I said sometimes years later.) So having a list will help; a little cheat-sheet.

And like, work has picked up and we got some good news about a kind of partnership (sub-letting) that I think is going to go really nicely. I might start teaching classes again soon, and hopefully Hula, which will just be even radder.

Gonna try to hit the beach tomorrow.

Going to Disney in about 7 weeks.

Am I going to be this lady sitting by the seaside on a beautiful day, an agented author with a beautiful little son, a nice job, and getting ready to go on vacation? What's next, Tom Hardy is going to come and marry me?

This makes me worried. Doesn't it seem too good? Doesn't something have to go terribly awry now?

(Okay yeah, not all perf, I did lose my car insurance because TWO FENDER BENDERS IN TWO YEARS OMG and because I got side-swiped and made a rather large claim last year. So that's an annoyance and, yeah, a huge chunk out of my finances. And yeah, I wish my Gram and my Dad were here for this, and that's never going to change.)

But cherophobia is stupid, so I'm also going to sit here and worry about what simply must go wrong now, instead of enjoying what isn't wrong. And what could potentially be totally right. Isn't that awful of me? Stop it, anxiety. Stop being a thing.

Oh my god, how did it get to be 3:30? It was just 2:30 a second ago. Better post this and run.
la_belle_laide: (D)
My either/or for most of last month (and all of this month so far) is either write in journal / do anything else OR do manuscript critiques with my good friend [Bad username or site: ”spatterdash” @]. And the critique trades have been SO STUPID MUCH FUN that I've just gotten so involved in them. Can't stop won't stop. (Fun fact, I still think of “spatterdash” as “d_r_o_n_e”.) This is the most fun I've ever had trading crits. It makes a big difference when it's something you look forward to—reading the other person's work, as well as getting feedback on your own—instead of dreading it.

But I should write a few things down, too, like about this past few weeks in general.

It seems like so many of my close friends are having massive anxiety / bouts of depression lately, all at once. And this kinda includes me, too, with the anxiety. Some of the things I can laugh about (like the other day, I read something about how the shape of certain toddler's heads can cause intra cranial pressure and brain damage and I FLIPPED OUT, went nuts for a few days, called the doctor, the whole shebang, doc told me to basically chill,) and other things are really sticking with me, like the way that Medicare only lets women over 65 get one checkup EVERY TWO YEARS WTF, and how dangerous that is? Major issue sticking to the inside of my skull right now!

Here's a thing that pissed me off and worried me, too. So last week, a friend of mine wrote a post about how important it is to keep your cats indoors for various reasons. I totally agreed, seeing as how I, at the time anyway, had a tiny baby oriole who'd been attacked by a cat. (Oriole—which Callum named Siba—later died. :( ) And also because cats take dumps in my yard, I don't want cat turds in my garden, and dogs eat the poop, which, you know, makes them very ill. This happened to a good friend of mine recently.

So then another gal comes along, and I've been sort of HitRECord friends with her for about five years. Not super close, but like, we used to chat all the time in TinyChat, on Facebook, whatnot. So, she comes along and replies that she keeps her cats indoors, but not because she cares about the stupid birds or my gross f'n dogs, like why would she care if my stupid dogs or some dumb birds died?

And now I'm like... Wow? How do you say that about someone's dogs, right? I know a lot of people don't take pets, or pet-owners seriously. I get that to a lot of people we're considered a little flakey or whatever. There's lots of stuff I don't particularly care about, but I wouldn't say that to people I knew who did care.

So I felt like something else was up, and I messaged her like, Dude, wht the hell? Why would you say a thing like that? Is something wrong? Because I totally thought we were okay. I always made nice comments on your art, the pics you post of your cats, have always supported you on hR, and, you know, sort of pathetically, I thought we were kind of friends?

And she wrote back, “I don't owe you anything just because you liked a few of my things, THAT'S NOT HOW I ROLL, so just unfriend me or whatever.”

And I say, “Well, I've always felt that the only thing you owe someone who is kind to you, is kindness in return. That's how I roll, so, you know. And I have to say, I will miss our chats, if that's how it's to be, because I always did like you.”

And do you know what she replied? “You are honestly no loss to me.”

Okay, what the hell with that? And let me say that this is TOTALLY out of the blue. And logically, I'm going, “Well, obviously, she is an asshole of gigantic proportions, so let it go.” But the irrational part of me is going, Did I miss an episode or something? Was I evil to her in a way that I didn't realize? And then I start freaking out, thinking, do OTHER people feel that way, too? Do all of my other friends kind of secretly dislike me, or just put up with me or something? Who is gonna do that next? Someone I'd really super hate to lose?

This kind of stuff doesn't end after high school, you know? Goes on and on well into adulthood and comes from the most surprising places.

But anyway. So I'm trying not to dwell on that too much. I mean, I know whatever is up is her problem and totally not mine anymore, I'm just stuck thinking about, “But what if everyone else...?”

Aside from that. Yeah, so I had that oriole, who was a little beauty but didn't survive, and I also have a little baby crow, who Callum named Matu. A really good little crow.

Callum named them Siba and Matu because lately he's been making up his own words and using them in songs, and then dancing along when he sings them. “Siba, mati, matu, YAY!” “Siba, mingo, mango, mingi, YAY!” And he does these moves like the Maori Haka, which he's never seen, so what even.

He actually did something hilARious last night, had me in tears laughing, but it's TMI and I would hate to put that out there but OMG. So funny.

Callum is really into birds in general, as I think I've mentioned. (How could he not be?) But now, aside from knowing all the kinds of birds in the yard, and all their calls, he also knows their babies' calls. “Mahh mahh beebee grack-ow. Ree ree beebee stee-ling!”

And today, he actually told me the story of what happened to him in the morning: “Gram-gram work. Things to do. Guy-guy Gram gram! Wah-hah-hah. Cam-cam blue truck, fire truck, yay! Guy-guy truck! Wah-hah-hah. Gram-gram cookie. Thankee gram-gram. Wah-hah-hah!” Which basically means: “we went to visit Grandma at work, but she had things to do so we said bye-bye, and I LOST MY CRAP IN THE STORE BECAUSE I WANT GRANDMA. Then I played with some cars and trucks in the store, and I had to stop doing that, too, so I FLIPPED OUT CRYING. Then we saw Grandma again and she gave me a cookie, which I had to stop eating once I got in the car, so I CRIED THE REST OF THE WAY HOME.”

And he's actually awake now, which is like fifteen minutes too early for him to be awake from his nap. And I didn't even get to check Tumblr one last time. But I did send out my email/story section to Spatterdash, so that's a huge achievement for a day like today. :)
la_belle_laide: (mantis)
Callum's birthday was another gorgeous day, even if it started out dreary and pouring. It cleared up by around noon. I invited everyone over from 11-11:30. Jeremy and his Mom got there around 11:30, others around noon, and Meghan closer to 1. By then the sun was shining, and we went outside for lunch, cake and presents. Callum was just happy that Meghan was there, LOL. She's “Momo” to him and once she's in the door, nothing else matters.

He straight up loved all of his gifts. It was neat, this year, because he's old enough to understand things, and have things he likes and is really into. Today he went through all of his new toys and clothes, and was still interested in all of them. When I asked him who gave them to him, his answer was “Momo” for everything.

Callum and mason both had to have naps in the afternoon, but Spence, Natasha, and Meg stayed around, and Gavin also stayed to play Skyward Sword. After naps, everyone came back, and then Uncle Don and Jen came for dinner. Spence and Natasha made mashed potatoes – like, actually boiled and mashed and seasoned the whole thing. They are great. :)

And then, of course, Callum was so wired after everyone left, and still wanted to play. He wouldn't sleep until around 9:30.

Today is just gorgeous! About 80 degrees, I think! We had originally planned a walk to the beach with Chrissie and her two boys, but Gavin didn't feel up to going out. So I took Callum to the bay. He couldn't wait to get into the water. Literally couldn't wait; like, went in before I could take his socks off. (I expected it to be chilly at the beach, hence the socks, but nope.) He walked right in with his crocs and socks. Eventually I got them off and let him wade into the waves. He was picking up those jingle shells and throwing them on, so I started to sing Pearly Shells in Hawaiian, which is what I always do when we're at the beach.

As I'm singing, this couple walks by and the woman stops and goes, “Are you singing in Hawaiian?” I told her I was, and she said she had grown up in Hawaii, but had moved her when she got married. She said, “If you ever hear Hawaiian music in the neighborhood, it's from my house!” I laughed and told her we always had it playing, too, because I'm a Hula dancer. She asked if I was Hawaiian and I said, no, but my son is. She said, “He's a little Hapa boy!” Then we talked about Hawaiian bands and such, when they came to play in NY and all.

I mean how neat is it to meet someone who grew up in HI, out here on the beach on Long Island? That's pretty funny.

It actually just inspired me to go look up jingle shell art ideas on Etsy, because I have thousands of those suckers. Yeah, like I have time to do anything like that. ha. I also just found someone on Etsy who sells just straight up jingle shells. Err, okay, wow. Maybe I should do that, too. Huh.

Okay, so now I've sat here rambling and effing off on Etsy for long enough. Should get the laundry done while Callum is still taking a nap.
la_belle_laide: (mantis)
I've been trying to catch that stupid cat in the trap, so I can put down a garden without it turning into a giant litter box. But so far I've trapped a possum, and a terrified raccoon. Callum saw the raccoon in the trap the morning I found it, so he's been talking all about the “maccoom” since then. And of course the dogs are going out of their minds. (I did let the maccoom go. It scurried under the damn shed, where it's probably got a nice little home and a ton of babies who are also going to spend their lives trying to eat garbage. But I don't know what else to do with it.)

National Poetry Month is over and thank god for that. Almost all of my poems were forced and really sucky this year. I wasn't feeling it, and I'd almost always rather have been writing something else or even just doing something else. And to top it all off, I got a message from a curator at hitRECord, and would I be interested in writing something for a science-related radio show? HELL YES I WOULD. What's the deadline? MAY 1st. Oops! I really want to whip something up tonight before bed. I hope I can!

Right now there's a guy outside cleaning the leaves out of the yard. I went and hired someone because it's been YEARS, the place looks like trash, and I just don't have time. He's doing it for really cheap. So I keep going out there every half hour to bring him some food and water and ask if he wants a sandwich or something like that. It's not even going to be perfect; it's just getting rid of years worth of leaves. The rest of the junk (old Xmas trees, tons of weeds and brush,) is still going to be there. Two hours a day, I get. I use them to write. The yard doesn't even come in second. But it's still hard for me to ask for help – even if I'm paying.

Mother's Day is just around the corner, and then Callum's birthday. I generally don't do much for Mother's Day—really just get a little something for my Mom—but I really look forward to Callum's birthday. Err, all two of them so far. Last year's one was such a beautiful and fun day. I hope this one will be, too. I actually just bought him that stupid LeapPad thing. There are so many things I said I would never do as a Mom that I have to do now, like microwaving things. Honestly, sometimes you just run out of time and you're like, “Okay, I fail as a Mom today.” I don't necessarily think that getting a Leap Pad is a fail, though; it's not like he's going to use it all the time. He's got a little toy laptop, and even a few other LeapFrog products, like toy phones and tablets, and he only uses them once in a while. This one has WiFi, though, and I figured I'd get it for the airplane ride in August, at the very least. We still mostly run around the house, or outside, and play, and read. I'm happy to say that I'm not really exaggerating with that. We do a lot of things that don't involve watching TV or youtube. So I think a little WiFi toy will be okay; it's not going to eat all his time.

You know, the way Tumblr eats mine. ^_^ Although when I really do have to get something done, I get it done. Right now I've got a manuscript out to two people (well, a partial, and a full after a partial, which is REALLY EXCITING because hi, you liked those first 3 chapters enough to ask for more!) And I'm still revising the NaNo one like a bitch. Like a HUGE bitch, I mean I keep changing things all the time. Soon, I'm going to have to put it somewhere so that close, trusted people can look at it, and then put it into OWSFFH and let people really have a go. Do major, major revisions. And then start querying that one, too. That story doesn't even know what it is, yet. But I'm to the point where I'm dreaming about it, so I think that's good.

Yesterday was 70 degrees. Today it's back in the low 50s. Damn it, weather. TURN HOT.
la_belle_laide: (morticia)
Only three weeks until Disney! Or, as Callum calls it, “Diz-din.” I've started telling him often, that soon (“Next month, this month, three weeks,” etc.) that we're going to Disney. “Callum and Momma, Grandma and Meghan are all getting on an airplane, way high up in the sky. Then when we land, we'll go to Disney! And there we'll see Spencer and Natasha, Aunt Chrissie, Uncle Timmy, Gavin and Mason, and Uncle Don and Jen. And then we'll see Micky and Minnie, and the castle, and Haunted Mansion, and Pirates. Also a great big ball, and tons of animals.”

When I mention Haunted Mansion, he does the scream. That's because I've been reciting the whole thing to him since he was about three months old. Cracks me up. It's so weird to me that he has no idea what I'm talking about. Like, no sense of the future, that this is a thing that has yet to happen. I wonder if he thinks I'm talking about the Disney Store, or maybe the Disney room at my Mom's.

I'd been fretting, a little, a few weeks ago, because he was only saying five or six words. Then, out of nowhere, in the space of about two days: five more words. And the next week, five more. And then more. All at once! So weird how that happens.

So of course, my biggest stress is boarding the dogs, and leaving my goldfish, The Doctor. I got an automatic feeder thing for him, and I tested it today, and it works. And I'll put his light on a timer, too. But what if something goes wrong, and he doesn't have food for six days? Or light? I don't know, I guess goldies are kind of hardy, but I'd be so upset if he went without food for that long. And, I always hate boarding the dogs. I haven't done it in so long. I know it's going to trigger Haku.

In other news, I started teaching Hula again. I've got a class of six kids, ages 5 to about 10. Okay, I've taught adults and I've taught tweens before, but this is a while different box of frogs. They actually are just like a box of frogs, one that I keep trying to keep the lid on, and they keep popping out. I'm worried, because there's going to come a Monday where my Mom will have to go to work for inventory, and I'll have to bring Callum with me. How the eff am I supposed to teach six frogs, and stop my toddler from getting into everything? I'm stressed just thinking about it. But, it's really fun to teach them. At the end of the first class, the youngest girl ran up and hugged me, saying, “Miss Jules, I love the Hula!” And they all wanted to learn Hawaiian words, too. Which is pretty good, I think.

As far as writing: That one really cool agent still has the manuscript. I even nudged her last week—or two weeks ago?--and haven't gotten a reply yet. She's replied to everyone else who's nudged her (with rejections. :( ) But she is telling people that she's focusing on SciFi now, which is what mine is. IDK, maybe she's getting invested in it, and taking her time? I don't know! My palms sweat every time I check my email.

I've also started another novel. I've actually written tons, tons, TONS of stuff since this one, but either I've kept them to myself, or they've been fanfics, or I've put them on the internet or on HitRECord, and none of them were ever meant for publication. This one is, though. I've only just started it. I might join NaNo this year, even though I'll miss the first few days.

It is cold, cold, cold here today, after a relatively warm Autumn so far. My room was 55 degrees and I put the heat on a little, just to take the edge off. I like the chill, though.

Although, I won't be complaining when I'm in Florida and it's 85 degrees, either, that's for sure. :D
la_belle_laide: (witch)
As it gets close to the end of summer, I'm starting to realize that we only get, I don't know, maybe 7, maybe 8 ocean days per year. Not counting those times we go in the fall, or Spring. Those don't exactly count, because I'm really talking about those lush, humid, hot summer days when you can actually go into the water. So even if we went every other week, sometimes two weeks in a row, it only comes out to 6-8 or so days per summer. Really not a lot. Which is weird, because, sure, next year we can go again, but next year, Callum will be two. Two is really different to one. Babies and kids change so rapidly. With adult friends and family, you kind of don't change as much, so you can recreate some of those moments from the past. But I only have that handful of days at the ocean with a one-year-old. And then a handful with a two-year-old. Etc. It's weird and kind of sad, right?

Last week, we had our “pre-Disney” summer party. “We” in this case was: Me, CJ, my Mom, Spence, his gf Natasha (I really like this kid, she is a great girl!) Meg, Chrissie, Tim, Gavin, Mason, my Uncle Don, and his gf Jen. We used to do those parties with Gran and my Dad, of course. This was the first one without them. So it was tough. And the trip is going to be tough, too. But still, I'm looking forward to it so much! I'm stoked beyond the telling of it. It's two more months. And we'll only be there for 6 days. But that's enough, I think, with a toddler, and with boarding the dogs. That's really my biggest worry, actually. I know CJ's going to have the Disney melt-downs, and there will be INCIDENTS, and craziness, and I'll probably be way too emotional. But it's just really hard for me to leave the dogs for that long. And I still can't figure out who to get to feed my goldfish, The Doctor, while I'm gone. I have to square that away. Two months is going to fly by. EVERYthing is flying by.

Tomorrow I'm going out kayaking with Dragon. We're taking a sunset kayak tour. Which is super weird, because two years ago, right after I very very very first got pregnant, I went out kayaking on the 28th with Lady Chrysanthemum. I just thought that was weird, you know, the wheel turns and all.

Sunday is already Powwow day! Wasn't I just there a few minutes ago, with tiny little CJ in the Ergo carrier, and my best friend, Glassworker? I bought him a little T shirt, thinking it would be forever until he was big enough to wear it, and he's already worn it a bunch of times. And now CJ will be walking around and probably picking out his own stuff that he wants.

And then on Tuesday, a HitRECord friend of mine from England is coming to visit! Which, EXCITEMENT omg. He's an incredible musician (he did music for a poem that I wrote, and also wrote and sang the wonderful song “Adieu,” for HitRECord On TV, which, HI, we won an Emmy for that show! :D ) and just about the sweetest person.

And then I start teaching a Hula class on Mondays in September – hopefully. If more people sign up.

I took a Saturday off mid-September, too, to have a yard sale. Maybe I can make some Disney money.

Then October and Disney and then Thanksgiving and Christmas and then the loooooooong, loooooong stretch of winter that I can't even bear to think about yet. I'm still not over last winter ffs. I can't deal with another like that. It was too much.

I'm always afraid to say, “Who knows what will be different next year?” because, literally, the last time I wrote that in my LJ, my Gran and my Dad passed within four months of each other. So, I'm not going to say that. I am going to hope that the rest of the year (oh, let's get ambitious and say the next TWENTY years!) can be as good as this summer has been. Even though things change so quickly, can it still be this good? I am going to hope that I will sign with a really rad literary agent (I've still got two manuscripts out, and still waiting to hear back from either or both agents.) I will hope to have less anxiety in general about things. Or, really, to work on that a bit, because it's not going to go away on its own.

Oh, while I'm here: CJ has six teeth, four donor siblings (though I've only been in contact with two families,) and a handful of words and phrases. Words like: hat, out, ant, balloon (“umboooon,”) and “AT?” while pointing to something, asking me to repeat what it is. And the same phrases he's always used: “I did it!” when I tell him he's done something well, OR when I tell him not to do something for pete's sake, (or, “THEY did it!” when I tell the dogs they're good,) and “It's good-good!” when he's eating oatmeal, or when I tell him something is “yucky” and not to eat it. :/ He plays ball, and has an orange car that he loves; a fuzzy, pink rocking horse that he likes to play with but will not sit on; a Mickey Mouse train; a musical chair; various Lilo and Stitch dolls etc. But given the choice, he'll always play with a DVD, remote control, the air purifier, or my cell phone. He loves books more than anything—ANYTHING—and is obsessed with “Go, Dog, Go,” and “Beep Beep.” He likes anything that says “beep beep,” which he copies by grunting twice. And he likes bees, which he calls “DIZ!” because of the buzzing. And he does animal noises, too, and a Donald Duck voice. Sort of. ^_^

I should really update LJ more often, but I get so lazy. CJ goes in for a nap and I usually just sit there looking at Tumblr and reading the stupid, depressing news. I always say that, but I never do it.

Since it's on my mind right now, I'd better go check Amazon for a fish self-feeder or something, and maybe a timer to turn the lights on and off.

I will absolutely check in with LJ more often. Will absolutely try. ^_^;;
la_belle_laide: (D)
Just jotting some things to remember. Callum took his first steps on his actual first birthday. Then he stopped for a while, and then about a week later, he started doing it again, two steps at a time. Yesterday, he walked across the room. And now, he's walking, turning, and trying to run. WTF, how did this happen so fast?

My wonderful friend Crow-Lady has taken Havoc for a while. He needs a break, I need a break from the 5:30-all day screaming. I've spent a few days scrubbing the floor in the sunroom and generally cleaning it up, cleaning up his cage, etc. (Now that CJ can toddle around, I plop him on the floor with some toys while I clean.) Havoc will come back, probably when it's too cold for him to be outside, and anytime Crow-Lady has to go away on vacations. But I cleared enough space in the sunroom to turn it into a kind of reading/relaxation room. The kind of hipster sort of thing you see on Tumblr, with cool chairs and string lights. I only just started, so we'll see how that turns out.

Big BIG news for my cousins across the street, too. Not something I'm allowed to write about yet due to legal stuff, so y'all can probably guess that they are adopting again, and we'll leave it at that. WOW. And it is happening so fast!

I still have that full manuscript out with the agent who said she enjoyed the beginning. Still have not heard back. It's on my mind every day: What part is she up to? Did she get bored and put it down? What is she thinking if she's reading that section or this one? I know you're supposed to give 3 months for a full, but I want to nudge her every single day. O_O I'll cop to checking out her FB page once in a while to see if she's saying something like “OMG I'm reading the best manuscript ever and I'm so fired up!” or if she's like “Jeez, the first five pages of this one ms were great, but now it sucks.” But she's not saying anything. >_< PLEASE LOVE ME.

Welp, back to staring at Winter Solider TVTropes for a while before putting BB and myself to bed. ^_^
la_belle_laide: (Wildflowers)

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I should have written this 2 weeks ago when it happened, but here it is now:


It's crazy. I changed the name to something that was similar to the title I dreamed about a few years ago. Actually no, it wasn't even a title I dreamed of; it was a lottery ticket with a word on it. And last month, I came across a scientific theory that sounded similar to that word, and weirdly fit perfectly with my book. I thought, Well, wow! I really like that! And maybe changing the title will get me a few nibbles. So I did, and sent out a query letter, and FIVE MINUTES LATER she wrote back saying she would love to read the whole thing.

I've got to wait, what, typically 6 months for a reply on a full. But I'm really stoked. She didn't ask for an exclusive, so I can query some others in good conscience, too.

Also in good news, my close relative got some good news regarding some medical results today and I couldn't be happier.

Yes, it snowed yesterday and it is miserably cold and not at all spring-like. But that bit of good news, and having a request for a full, is really making me feel all the happies.

Last week I went out with Gold Dragon to see Winter Soldier. It was so dang good and we had a great time together as always. Gold Dragon wanted to hang out after the movie, but I'm one of those Moms now who can't ask anyone to watch my baby past 11. So I took a rain check and we're going to go out to a nice dinner some Sunday instead.

And tomorrow, my best friend Glassworker is going to come over for a hang out.
Work is fine (though my bosslady had a sad occurrence / health upheaval – she's fine now, though,) clients are generally nice (except the ones who book two slots and then cancel them both, leaving me with NO clients on that day, wtf, who does that?!) and I got a raise! Woop! I actually got it sometime previously, but my boss didn't tell me, and I didn't notice it because my paycheck varies so much week to week.

I really miss Kung Fu these days. I especially miss my beautiful training family. Empress went to another school way out west (and she works and goes to college full time now.) Snarklit moved to Brooklyn. Chrysanthemum still trains once in a while when she's around. Gold Dragon works full time, doing graveyard shifts at the hospital and then catching up on sleep. I just miss them. I miss the shape I was in, too. I'm still thin but I have no muscle and no strength. Boo.

BUT. Manuscript. Family member's health scare over. New coat of paint in the living room. Hopefully some nice weather soon. TAX RETURN. For the first time since becoming LMT, I'm getting a return!

I'm also doing the April poem-a-day thing on HitRECord. Most of them suck, but once in a while I've gotten something good, and it's forced me to think, and to write, every day.

And CJ has finally got one tooth that you can actually see now. Every few days he'll say a word or two, then he'll stop saying it. “Fish” (“dick,) “book” (“guk”) “egg” (“ehh”) and the other day he said “Haku” clear as day. He's got some good sign language, too. (Eat, milk, cousin, hello and bye-bye.)

His first birthday party is coming up fast. Though, that is slightly depressing because after that, Jo-chan goes to work and we don't see her until next Fall. Summers are nice, but a little lonely because we get so few people coming by.

Maybe I'll try to get Mom, Boychild's Momma and Boychild to come with us on our Monday Summer walks again. That was really nice last year.

But here I am already thinking of summer, when it's 40 degrees today.

Come on Spring, get it the eff together!

la_belle_laide: (floating woman)

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It's Christmas Eve morning (note: didn't get around to posting this till his second nap in the afternoon,) and I'm sitting here with Callum sleeping on my lap, waiting for him to wake up so we can go to the store and get some red cabbage for Fakemas dinner. We did Fakesgiving, now it's Fakemas because everyone can only get together on the 26th. That's fine by me, because hey, extra days of celebration, right?

I'm also typing this on my laptop because my Mac crapped the bed. It took me about two frantic weeks to rescue everything off the dying hard drive. A friend gave me an iCloud type thing as a gift, so it's all being backed up online.

Oh, my Mom gave me a month subscription to OMG, the things I found! On my Mother's Mother's side, all the way back to Ireland and Germany. On my Mother's Dad's side, a total dead end. Apparently my great grandmother never even existed. And all records stop after my great great grandfather. The only hint is a slave from Trinidad with the family name. I'm thinking maybe that's why they never discussed anything.

On my dad's side – wow! 4th great grandmother Rebecca Moon, great Aunt Freelove Moon, some people who fought in the civil war (on the GOOD side, mind!) and then, after that, I started going back further when they started turning up in England. England was really good about keeping records. I started to see titles: Sir, Lady, Lord. And then Baron, Viscount, Count... and then princess. It turns out I'm directly descended from Princess Marguerite of Italy, and all of the Capet kings and queens of France. I was really hoping for the British Plantagenets, but no dice. I am French as hell. And no direct line from Eleanlor of Aquitaine, though her husband was my 21st great grandfather. :/ It tickled me about Princess Marguerite, though, because I understand that Margherita pizza is named after her, and that's my favorite.

And there were some slaves on that side, too, from Jamaica. So it's like, Kings and Queens from France and Italy had a bunch of descendants who came to America in the 1700s and married Natives and slaves. And then a second wave of immigrants came from Italy and Germany.

I just wish I could find anything at all on my Mom's side!

Last week I went out with my best pal, Glassworker. We went to see Thor 2. It was my first post-baby movie. I freaking loved it. Best fight scene ever (though it pissed me off, because I have that whole world-bending, gravity-screwed, physics-mess kind of stuff in my book, too.) There were some parts that made me laugh until I was slapping my thighs. And of course Tom Hiddleston never puts a line wrong. I'm glad it was my first movie after having CJ. I mean, I had already had one night out (the TBS concert,) but this was a little less stressful. The movie theater is right around the corner and I went with my best friend.

CJ is still asleep, but once he wakes up, we're off to the store. Then we come home, eat lunch together, (he's super into food, like me,) then he plays with his piano for a few minutes while I do some stuff online. Then by 2, he's ready for another nap. He still naps on a pillow on my lap. I haven't really tried putting him down for a nap. Every little thing wakes him up. One of these days, I'll try it. Then when he wakes, we play together for a while, then take the dogs out, he plays with his Mozart Cube or Music Turtle while I feed the dogs and get his dinner ready. Then he eats dinner, then I eat dinner, and then by 6 he's asleep again and I usually watch something on TV. These days it's Fringe on Netflix. He wakes up, we play for a bit, then his Grammy comes home and she takes him for a while so I can clean Havoc's cage and take a shower. He's usually asleep by 9. He still does not sleep through the night. At this point, he wakes around 5 AM asking for food. But he's pretty good about going back to sleep after I feed him. I like to put him in my bed after 5 AM and let him sleep there for a few hours. He's getting so big now, he hardly fits into the little space he used to occupy. And he does tend to wake me up by grabbing my face or kicking me in the crotch. O_O

Yeah, that's my whole day right there!

He's also started waving goodbye and clapping, right at 7 months. Clapping is right on schedule, waving a few months ahead, I think. He still won't crawl, though I see him thinking about it. I think there's time for that.

Tomorrow is obviously his first Christmas, so we'll stop by Boychild's family across the street for a bit, but the real family dinner will be the day after.

After the holidays I have a lunch date with Empress, Lady Chrysanthemum, Snarklit, Gold Dragon and hopefully Lao Shir.

And then it's the loooong, cold winter.

la_belle_laide: (floating woman)

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This past Tuesday we had Fakesgiving. Everyone else in the family is going to be away in Disney for actual TG, so we bumped it up a week and a half. It was a little hectic because I had to work, and lots of the food got burned because it's pretty hard to do this whole holiday thing with an infant! But it was still brilliant. The only problem was that SB and his girlfriend weren't there, since they moved to upstate NY and couldn't make the trip down. I think it's the first Thanksgiving that I haven't seen him. And Timmy was working. :(

And now I've got all holiday music on my iPod and holiday stations in my car, because I am ridiculous.

Callum really, really loves this whole "eating" thing. He's very into yogurt and fruit. Not a fan of veg so far, but there's time for that.

Funny moment: My Mom talking to my uncle about cable vs. Direct TV and asking him, "You have Optimum, right? Do you have a big package?" and realizing what she was saying halfway through the last word and trying to un-say it. Chrissie and I laughed until we were in tears.

I have to work super early tomorrow, extra early, in fact, to squeeze in a 90 minute treatment and an hour one. My first client is a book scout but she's told me straight out that she left one of her doctors because she could tell she wanted to get published, and that she left a past massage therapist because she talked too much about herself. And she's really nice, so I don't want to put her off. And when I'm at work, I'm a massage therapist and not a writer. I'm there to do one job.

Though, god, it really sucks having an actual book scout right there, and not being able to ask questions or anything!

I had to take next Monday ant Tuesday off work, because my Mom has to work and I don't have anyone to watch CJ. To make up for it, I'm going in on black Friday. Once I come home, then I'll go out and get a little holiday tree for baby and me. :) I'm going to be even more obnoxious about the hols than I used to be. Ha.


Oct. 20th, 2013 10:50 pm
la_belle_laide: (floating woman)
The day that CJ was supposed to have his hip x rays, we drove way the hell up the damn island only to be turned away because the dr had taken the day off. The receptionist said they'd called us, but I didn't have any messages. And there was another family there, too, who had to turn around and go back.

I think that Dr.s make too much money, and they don't have to care about business and patients. I recently had to leave my Dr of 20 years b/c I switched insurance and the receptionist was just like, "Bye then."

So, now I have to make another appointment, this time going to our usual place, except it's a whole big thing b/c tis one particular Dr does't take our insurance. So now I have to get prior approval, have all his charts faxed to insurance, etc. Ridiculous.

Tomorrow I have two clients, then a Dr appointment myself (just basic yearly stuff.) Next week I have another appointment with a new Dr, and to get this mark on my shoulder looked at, just in case.

But Tuesday is going to rule. I took a spa day for myself, as an early birthday gift. So I'm having a massage and reflexolgy. I can't effing WAIT. After that, my good friend Durga is coming for a visit. She lives in Seattle, and she's coming here to help her Mom move there with her, so that they can live together. I think that's fabulous. Last time I saw her was January. We broke into Tesla's old lab. (It's being refurbished now as a science museum, which makes me very happy. But I will miss breaking into it.)

Also, a few nights ago I ate some baby carrots and then spent the rest of the night barfing them up. This is probably because of the Government shutdown, since the FDA wasn't working and they didn't inspect food for salmonella. Republicans made me puke. Typical.

Every year after my birthday, I start a new blog file. (I write these up before posting them, and save them in a doc file, because you never know when your browser is going to crash and erase everything. Also because I like to keep my blogs on my hard drive.) So this will probably be my last entry for "blog40." So I'll end with some photos and a link to a video.

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The other day I was going around the house talking in a POTC Davy Jones accent--don't ask why, I have no idea--and I did this fake tentacle-shaking sound. I don't even know what possessed me to make that noise, but this was the result. (LJ no longer lets me embed videos. WTF.)

And yes, I am willing to do the most moronic and ass-headed things to get him to laugh like this, LOL.

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la_belle_laide: (morticia)
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20 weeks (but 4 1/2 months going by the date) today! 26" and 14 pounds. 75% height and 25% weight- tall and lanky.  

Callum is obsessed with his hands, can get his feet into his mouth, loves to sing, loves Mickey Mouse, loves books and being read to, laughs a lot, can sit pretty well with some low back support, and enjoys patting his dogs. Still can't roll over, and not sleeping through the night. (He wakes up between 5-6 for a feeding, and then around 7:30 or 8. We get up at 8:30.) Won't nap unless he's held.

In two weeks he has to go for x rays to check for hip dysplasia because his hips are very flexible and the doc thought that was unusual. (Might be why he's so late to roll over? Actually, he did it once or twice last month and then never again.)

But other than that, we're moving right along!

I took more hours at work starting last week. Work is the same as always – another new receptionist (we get lots of temps,) and some nice clients. Actually, I took a day off in 2 or so weeks so I can gat a massage for my birthday. Something to look forward to.

It has been hot as balls here. Yesterday it was 80, wtf. I am so mad at the stupid weather.

Today, our government is still shut down, and someone was apparently trying to shoot up Capitol Hill. This country has gone completely balls-up.

I miss reading, writing, and cooking. I miss Kung Fu like crazy. I know these are temporary "I miss"es and one day I'll get them back. I am still, thankfully, making stuff for HitRECord, and still querying when I get the chance.

Oh, and I'm going to see Taking Back Sunday next month. :DDDDD Huge yay.

For Halloween, I'm going to be Morticia Addams and Callum is going to be Pubert. Very fitting, yes? We'll probably just answer the door, but it beats last Halloween when the roads were still flooded, there was no electricity and there were power lines all over the place, and I was sick as hell. Last year I was trying to imagine what this year would be like. I can hardly fathom that it is here, complete with that shiny little face you see up there.

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Sep. 22nd, 2013 10:08 pm
la_belle_laide: (floating woman)

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The first time I heard my boy laugh is the first day of Autumn.

I know I know, I'm singing the melody wrong. I was just going to grab him out of his carseat and I was singing it (wrong) to myself and he just lost his crap! So I just kept singing that same melody.

Of course after this happened, he had his nap interrupted by a local fire alarm and screamed for 45 minutes (like inconsolable screaming, the way he hasn't in about 2.5 months or so.) Then he was tired and frazzled for the rest of the day.

I hope this will be funny again tomorrow!
la_belle_laide: (mantis)

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Last year on the 7th, I peed on a stick and got a + sign. That day, I went for a walk alone on the beach and thought, "This time next year, I'll probably be bringing a little baby on my walks with me." I had a sense that it would be a boy, too. I kept thinking "He."

Today I took Callum to see the biggest thing on the planet: The ocean. I dressed him in his little Aloha shirt and off we went.
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It's best after Labor Day, when all the tourists are gone and it's free to park.

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A nice lady took a pic of us, and we chatted for a while about how nice it was without the crowds. She told me her daughter was having a baby and she was so excited. ^_^

I walked on for a bit, and it was important to me to put some ocean water on Callum's feet and his face. I wasn't about to unstrap him and dip him in. The water was dang cold and it was too sunny. He can't wear sunblock yet so I didn't like to take him out of the shade. But I just wanted to put it on him, so I cupped some ocean in my hand and dipped his feet in that. We live on an island, you just have to feel the ocean as soon as possible!

It's strange because he'll never remember it, and he didn't even really understand it. It was just like, a loud, big blue wobbly thing that he was seeing, right? With no sense of how vast or how important it was.

There were some surfers out there, because the waves were pretty good. On our way out, I met this guy who said, "I love your umbrella!" and I said, "I love your surfboard!" I asked him how long he'd been surfing and he said about 42 years. He said he gave lessons and offered to let me have a go. I told him I'd been surfing a few times and had really liked it; that my son might want to surf someday, and if so, I'd want him to learn how. He told me where he works and gave me his email address.
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Happy surfing, dude!

It's Sunday. Jo-chan comes back tomorrow, which is nice. I work early tomorrow and Tuesday, but it's not so bad. My clients have been really awesome to me. Yesterday I had my absolute favorite client, Betty, who is 90 years old. She bought some bibs and burp cloths and gave me a really sweet card.

Anyway, tomorrow after work maybe Jo-chan, Mom, Boychild's Mommy and I will do something together. And Boychild when he gets home from school. Then at night once Callum is asleep, Jo-chan, Mom and I will have a bit of ice cream and watch Merlin.

Autumn is around the corner! ^_^

ETA: I've been taking CJ to do one thing on every off day, before his long nap, just to get us both out of the house. Even if it's a walk to the bay, traipse through the woods, or grocery shopping. Note to self: If there's nothing else lined up, take him to those little local farm places and start collecting gifties for that one long-distance friend. You know the one.
la_belle_laide: (floating woman)

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A year ago on the 25th, it was a Saturday, and I went to the fertility clinic where they took me in an hour late. So I sat around watching a show about sea turtles and reading a magazine about Doctor Who. Then I went into the office, where I read Sherlock Holmes while I waited, because, as I told the nurse, if this worked, I wanted to have a smart baby. She said, "I Mama is smart, the baby will be, too!"

I left cautiously hopeful, and here I am today, with a little boy sleeping on my lap.

I try to take Callum somewhere for an hour or so every afternoon. It gets us both out of the house – though we can't ever stay for too long because of Haku. Today I decided to take some DVDs I'm trying to get rid of to the Yellow Barn by the library. But the library and Yellow Barn were both closed, and the drop boxes only accept books. I just gave about 50 books to my neighbor across the street for her yard sale.

So there I stood in the parking lot of the library, holding Callum's carrier on one arm and a huge bag of DVDs and tapes in the other, in the hot sun, when a blond woman in a sundress approached. She was on foot, and the only other person in the parking lot.

She asked, "Are you looking for something?"

I explained that I wanted to get rid o all of these DVDs but didn't want to just leave them there.

She said, "I walked over here from the shelter for abused and displaced women. I hope it's not rude of me to ask, but we don't have a really big video library there and one of the girls was just saying that she wanted to see more movies."

Wow, imagine that?! What great timing! I told her she could have all of them. She said, "How fortuitous! What are the chances?"

I gave her the bag, then offered her a ride back to the shelter, since it would be a long walk carrying all the DVDs. She accepted, and so we talked on the way back about astrology and baby names. (Because she really liked the name Callum. And she got it, too. "That's Gaelic," she said. "Colin is another version of it.")

Then I was going to take Callum for a pleasant walk through the cemetery down the road and take some photos, but I had forgotten my damn camera! >_< So instead, we visited my Mom at her work. Drex was working there too and he came to say hi.

It's funny, originally I was going to go to the store b/c I'm out of chocolate, but I didn't have any money to spend so I decided on the library instead. Neat!

Two days ago, I took Callum out to brunch with Lady Chrysanthemum, Empress and Snarklit. I have been missing the hell out of them so it was such a wonderful day, getting to see them. We haven't trained together in so long. I haven't trained in over a year, Empress is in school AND working at a dental clinic, and she now trains somewhere else. And Chrysanthemum has taken time off to be with her daughter, who was waiting on a baby of her own – who was just born yesterday!
She got in a little Grandma practice first:
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And here's the lot of us, the old crew:

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We talked—of course—about how much we miss Ye Olde Days of training, when we were all together at the cute, cozy school. When the Gold Dragon was there, and a bunch of really nice kids, and all the other folks who used to train with us. When our Kwon was like a family and we all had some TV Trope-ish role in class. It all kind of started to change when we moved schools, and different people came in and old ones left.

I still want that back. I miss it enough that I'll wait to have it again.

Well, we were all just feeling nostalgic, I guess. One day, Callum will train and hopefully I'll be training again, too. These people will always be my brothers and sisters.

Welp! It's been chilly at night and hot during the day, but you can definitely feel a hint of fall even in the afternoon. It's just a smell on the breeze. Jo-chan's school starts tomorrow, so she'll be living here part time. Can't wait for her to come back! Mom, and Boychild and Boychild's Mommy, and Callum and I have been going for evening walks on Mondays. It'll be nice to have her along, too.

Speaking of, she's having a BBQ later that Callum and I are going to. We're going to discuss the logistics of getting us all to Disney in 2014. :D

And so Autumn is around the corner! Yesterday I was looking at the FB pics a friend of mine posted. She's from HitRECord and she has this beautiful little boy. (He's so cute and smart, he's got his own section in the TV show! Which I'm going to be on, too!) Anyway, she has a pic of her and her son at around 6-7 months or so, walking through a pumpkin patch. Callum will only be 5 months in October, but I can't wait to get a pic like that, myself. :)

He's about to wake up any minute, so I have to cut this short!
la_belle_laide: (mantis)

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Callum will be 12 weeks tomorrow. They say that's the end of the "fourth trimester." There's definitely been a difference, too. Less crying, more laughing. On and off more sleeping, too. Two nights ago he slept for five hour straight! Then he went back to the 2 hour thing. :/ But hopefully that is a sign of things to come.

Two Saturdays ago, July 27th, I returned to work, SUPER part time. It felt so good to be out of the house though, to have some adult time, and to be useful to people again. My first client tipped me $100. O_O WOW. And the two new therapists there said that there were a ton of clients just waiting for me to come back. Felt really nice to be needed like that.

The day after I went back to work, the weirdest thing happened. I took the dogs and Callum outside, like I always do in the morning. The dogs went running to the front yard while I carried Callum after them. They ran straight past this:

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How the hell does my SIGHT HOUND miss something like that? Sucker was over 3 feet long!

My first, extremely human reaction was to recoil in horror. Then I grabbed my camera (still holding Callum!) and started snapping some pics. I crouched down to get a little closer, thinking "Dang, that's the biggest garter snake I've ever seen!" Then later, I googled my "garter snake."

WRONG. It is a northern black racer. An effing CONSTRICTOR, known to bite often and hard if you scare it enough.

Yet, it just chilled there (or whatever verb snakes do when they're just sort of there,) and looked at the both of us. I couldn't shake the feeling that it was looking at Callum; yes, I know how wonky that sounds. But interestingly, his birth year is the year of the black Snake. I thought that was super cool.

Right after that, we were sitting outside in the chair, and an osprey (ka 'io o ke kai – Callum's Hawaiian name,) was circling overhead. Pretty neat.

Let's see, what else. HitRECord continues to be interesting and supportive. The TV show is coming up on 70-some-odd days and we're going to be in it. :D I can't wait to see how it all turns out.

I also sent out a bunch of query letters to some new agents. I haven't done that since before Callum (CJ for short, okay?) was born, and it was awesome to get back into that.

The other news is that SB is moving away. He's 25 and I knew this time was coming. Still, my memory is so clear of when he was CJ's age and living with us. I guess a part of me thought he'd always be right there, just a few miles away, coming for day-visits even as an adult. It kind of guts me that he's leaving. But he has this adorable new girlfriend and they are moving in together, in upstate NY. I can hardly believe it. Wasn't I just playing Ninja Turtles with him the other day? (Actually, that's not too far-fetched. As far as I know, he still does pretend to be a Ninja Turtle. ;D ) I just hope that he'll be able to come to Disney with us in Oct. '14. They (he, his GF, and Jo-chan,) are going with Boychild and his Mom and Dad this coming December. Wish I could go, but CJ is way too young.

Jo-Chan will be coming back here to stay for 4 days a week at the end of August, so she can get to school on time. I'm really looking forward to having her around again. She is part of our little family and I want her to be a big part of Callum's life.

Right now CJ is napping (this phase where he can't nap unless he's sleeping on or close to me or my Mom; he's currently on the boppy pillow on my lap as I type,) and the damn crow is causing a huge racket. I can hardly stand the noise but at least he's not screaming, as he's lately taken to doing every time CJ falls asleep. It's like he's got a goddamn sensor. He wakes the baby 9 out of 10 times and I have to spend a good amount of time getting him to sleep again. It drives me up the damn wall because, even though I know it's irrational, it feels like he's doing it on purpose. >_<

Well anyway, so I'm looking forward to Autumn now and all the good things it's going to bring: Jo-chan staying over again, trips to pumpkin patches with my new baby, the HitRECord TV show (and maybe some money from that too! AFAIK we are getting paid in advance!) and who knows what else. I just feel like it's going to be a really good time! ^_^

ETA: Here's something weird: I'm suddenly allergic to eggplant. I used to eat it all the time. Then I had it the other day, and I got this huge rash on my lips. WTF?
la_belle_laide: (floating woman)

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Last time I wrote, I mentioned that I had a case of Baby Blues for a few weeks after Callum was born. (It's not PPD unless it starts to go past 6 weeks. It didn't.) I still get a little blue around 6 PM or so; not sure why. Never did before. Maybe it's because that's about when I'd start leaving to go to Kung Fu?

Here's a weird thing I didn't mention. Okay, so I gave my bedroom to Callum, but I'm still sleeping in there. But it's definitely a nursery, with his stuff instead of mine. All of my bedroom stuff (except my bed, which he'll eventually get,) is in the new room. So it's a really nice nursery, bright and airy and happy looking and whatnot, with mobiles and interesting toys and such.

Yet when I go in there before my shower to make up his crib for the night, and get everything set up for (non)sleep time, I end up getting the weirdest feeling. It's like a kind of future nostalgia; that's what I call it. I feel like I'm already this ancient, old woman, like a hundred years old, somewhere in a retirement home or something like that, thinking back to the days when I was a brand new mother. And I'm remembering making up his bed at dusk, with the summer wind blowing the curtains, and the western sun coming in through the window. I'm this old woman somewhere unfamiliar, and Callum is grown with kids of his own, and all of this has already happened. Everyone I know now is gone, and all the Disney trips and other traveling, all the school years and graduations, new cars, weddings and funerals and joys and tragedies are all done, and I'm just looking back on it, maybe thinking "It seemed hard at the time, but I wish I could go back."

I have the clearest memory of his nursery - as I'm in it. It's not deja vu in that I don't have that peculiar "I've done this before and I know what comes next" feeling. It's actually kind of weirder than that.

Okay, so moms? Or anyone else? You don't have to be a mom to have bizarre feelings, that's for sure! What even is up with that?

Oh, last night I had a visit from my best friend, Glassworker. I was so happy to see her and hang out with her again – but, again, it was so damn strange. My Mom took Callum for about 2 hours so that we could hang out and watch some Dexter, chat and catch up and everything. Exactly like we always used to do, so it was awesome that we haven't changed, and our friendship hasn't changed, and some things are constant like that. BUT, of course, it was still a totally bizarre feeling, because the last time we did that, I wasn't a mom. So for as much as it was just the same, it was also completely different. Know what I mean?

Anyway. Strange times, right? Ugh, okay, I just had to get that out of my system. Mom is with Callum now and I'm dyeing my roots. So I have to go rinse, and shower, and then feed him again and watch some TV at Mom's for a bit. Re-watching Lost, actually. :) (Finished Merlin, heartbreaking. What is up with BBC? Why is everything so depressing? Of course, Arthurian Legend is kind of a foregone conclusion, but. Yeah.)

Really time to rinse my hair now. But glad I had a chance to sit and write this all out.
la_belle_laide: (floating woman)

I've been doing so much stuff at HitRECord lately! For some reason it works out that when Callum is napping I can get a few hours of recording and editing in. Of course, that means that I'm not doing my laundry or cleaning my house at all. Or sleeping. But hey. My baby is not a big napper anyway. 40 minutes at a time a few times a day. Lately he's been going for about 3 hours at a time at night. So I'm getting maybe 4-5 hours of sleep per night. I've learned to live with it. Right now, he's sitting on my lap in the boppy pillow. Actually he's starting to get fussy because I stopped paying attention to him to write this.

And, one feeding and two naps later (actually he's still asleep...)

So yeah, HitRECord. Joe picked a few things that I wrote for the TV show that he's doing, so that's been really awesome. It's super cool that I get paid for it, but really, it's just neat that he likes my ideas and wants to put them on TV. :D One of them is going to be a song about the space between atoms; he said it was really "geeky" and that got him excited about it. Super cool. He also congratulated me on Callum and might use some of the videos that I did of him, as well. ^_^ Neat. Whatever money I get from that will go to Callum.

Speaking of money, I haven't returned to work yet. TMI, but it's really hard to save enough milk to be gone for the day, and I don't want to put him on formula yet. He's only 2 months old.

For the 4th of July, we went to the beach with my Mom, Chrissie and Boychild. My friend Drex has been to visit, and y wonderful bestie Glassworker is coming on Monday. I haven't had time for many other visitors, and also I'm self conscious about the state of my house, with laundry everywhere.

It's been hot as satan's codpiece and no rain until today – still not enough. The grass is completely dead and all my plants are wilting and burnt.

Here's something I didn't mention (well, I haven't been on LJ< that's why.) The first 3, 4 or so weeks after Callum was born, I was super hormonal, to the point of getting really depressed at around 6 PM every night. Like, crying over everything kind of depressed. One night I was crying because I forgot to bake sweet potatoes, and another night I was crying because it was raining. Then once because my cousin's house was so nice and mine hadn't been cleaned in weeks. Just ridiculous things.

I still sometimes feel a little blue around 6 PM, but nothing like it was.

When Callum is asleep and I'm not doing things on HitRECord or having car accidents, I'm trying to catch up on a bit of housework, reading, looking at Tumblr, watching DVDs. When he's awake, I'm feeding, changing, or playing with him. He went through a stage for a few weeks where he just cried and cried all day, and could not be consoled. He still gets cranky at certain times, but he's consolable now. Usually, all I have to do is recite Disney's Haunted Mansion to him. Then I get a big smile.

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When I say "I am your host... your GHOST HOST," he just loses it.

Oh, we're also planning a trip to Disney next year, Oct. '14. Callum will be a year and a half by then, which is when most of the kids in the family have gone for the first time. "We," by the way, are: me and Callum, my Mom, Chrissie, Timmy, Boychild, SB and Jo-chan. I'm looking forward to it and dreading it at the same time. My kid gets to go to Disney; I've been saving up for it since before he was born. But, I'm going to see my Dad and Gran around every corner. It'll never be 100% what I wanted. I know there's going to be ugly crying once in a while, and I think it'll be especially hard for my Mom.

But, that's over a year away, and I have a long enough time to stress about that and be neurotic.

Hmm, other than that, I've been watching Battlestar Galactica. I need something to turn on when I'm chained to him, and that's been fairly decent. I also finished watching Merlin (ALL THE TEARS, GOD.) And Hannibal, oh my god. I went nuts for Hannibal this season. The Tumblr fandom might even be better than the show.

I have to pee now, which means I have to get up and put the baby down, which means waking him, ugh!

Don't know when I'll get to do another update. I do miss LJ. But Tumblr is just so much easier to do with one free hand. :)

I haven't looked at my f-list in a long time. Hope everyone in LJ land is doing well!

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