01 December 2013

Just Dance Kids 2014

You know what makes your kids think that you're awesome? Getting the chance to test out video games on them.
You know what I got the chance to do? Review Just Dance Kids 2014 (for the WiiU).
My test subjects were an assortment of children aged 6, 7, and 10.
Only one of them is mine. The other four (four!) are grifters.
So my official review method is as follows: allow children to play with thing. Report back as to whether or not children enjoyed thing, and whether or not I, as adult, approved of their enjoyment.


This is some assorted children dancing along to Day-O.
They totally enjoyed it.
Me: Was it fun?
Them: Yes!
Me: Would you pick it as your game for screen time?
Them: YES!
Me: Okay then.
--
We have played Just Dance before, and the Kids version features (1) more lyrically appropriate songs and (2) easier dance moves.  The kid songs are ones that I'm fond of, but the 'test children' involved are exposed to regular pop music and I don't think they really needed the lyrical protection that this game offers. What I do like is that the moves are easier as compared to regular Just Dance games, and it doesn't seem as competitive. I've seen some kids get frustrated with the 'grown up' dance games because the moves go to fast and they get lost.

Overall, I would say that this game is great for families who are just getting into the whole dance video game thing, or for families with younger kids. The 6 and 7 year-old test set had a SUPER fun time with this, and it lasted beyond the New Toy Phase. In contrast, I got the distinct impression that the 10-year-olds involved thought that this game was a little babyish, and would have preferred the non-kid Just Dance game.

The songs are not unpleasant, if you are, for instance, in the other room trying to ignore your children and get some work done. I like games where I feel like they're getting some activity in, as opposed to the sitting-on-the-couch-and-staring sort of games. So with this I at least feel like they're getting to move they're bodies and bounce out some of their energy, and I don't feel like I have to so much be on hand as editor/language monitor.

I have a WiiU, so we tried the WiiU version, but the game is also available for Wii and Xbox 360. You can buy it from Amazon, here (and I note that it's on sale, at time of publishing this post for $19.99; Christmas present time!).

Would I buy it? For kids under 8, yes. For kids over 8? I'd go for regular Just Dance.

Did the kids like it? Yes. Even the 10-year-olds.

We had a lot of fun and got to move our bodies too! Recommend!


I was selected for this opportunity as a member of Clever Girls Collective and the content and opinions expressed here are all my own.

11 November 2013

Traumatizing cat is traumatizing, unprepared for Christmas, side eye at Google+

HORRIBLE THINGS MY CAT HAS DONE TO ME
- Brought me a dead bat
- Brought me a STILL ALIVE BUT DYING bat
- Decapitated lizards
- Seriously, like a lot of lizards
- Vomited 1/2 a mouse onto my bare foot
- It was the butt half
- TRAUMATIZING DEAD OPOSSUM INCIDENT:
Last night, while folding laundry, I noticed a weird red/black...glob?
Oh...this is blood?
Okay, I'm following a trail of blood to....
I'M FOLLOWING A TRAIL OF BLOOD TO GABRIEL'S ROOM OHMYGOD
Where I found my cat and severely not alive opossum.
Nothing will ever be okay again.
- Immediately post-opossum, the cat vomited all over my rug.
- I only have ONE rug in my WHOLE house.
- Why did he puke THERE?
- That's the end of my list, really, but I feel it is sufficiently long. 
--
Christmas! Is....oh god Christmas is PRACTICALLY UPON US????
I'm totally unprepared.
CRAP.
WHY IS IT HERE ALREADY???
I AM NOT PREPARED.
--
Google+ keeps trying to SNEAK me into signing up for an account when I log into Gmail. Y'know. If I WANTED a Google+ account,  I would have one.
I don't want one.
If I wanted one, I would have one.
Taking away the things that I use and like (reader, YouTube comments, etc) and trying to BOSS me into Google+ hasn't worked, has it?
Tricking me isn't going to work, either.
So...stop that.
Stop doing that because I don't like it at all.

10 October 2013

Complaints about nothing, some unrelated photos, I have two adorable baby nieces

I've just been IMPOSSIBLY tired lately.
And cranky.
Also impossibly cranky
Pretty sure it's some nefarious combination of:
  • waking up when there are still stars in the sky and not getting home until it's dark again
  • maybe I should start taking a multivitamin
  • lack of exercise
  • who the hell knows? Sometimes I get cranky

Whatever, I don't even have anything going ON right now. Like, I'm here, trying to complain at you, and I'm flipping through my normal complaints about humanity and my life and the world and specific people who irritate me and I'm coming up with nothing.  Can I complain about not yet being able to formulate a complaint?
I think I would like to to that.
Nothing is WRONG, but I feel grumpy, and I would like to turn that outwards.
Please and thank you.

--
If one is going to take pictures at 2am in Watsonville, this tow truck is one of my favorite spots to do it.


--

How little can one blog while continuing to self-identify as a blogger?


--
The weather has been stunning lately. This is the beach. In Santa Cruz. In October. Beautiful.
 --

Phones! 
I have always thought of myself as someone who has normal, human-sized hands, and a regular person sized face. Do we....no longer make smartphones proportioned for human hands and faces?
I'm more or less accustomed to the size of my iPhone, even though I know I thought it was oversized when I got it.
But poking around and browsing for new phones it seems like they're all even BIGGER than that now and what the hell?
Is there a phone out there that is the size of a phone and not the size of my head? I'd like a normal phone-sized phone proportioned for regular human people and not creepy giants.

I don't hate my iPhone or anything, but I'm not one of those diehard never-go-back apple-ites, either. 
--
I have two delightful nieces. Are you not delighted? They delight me.
--
I bought this iPhone case and I don't have one single regret.
--
My niece though! Can you even stand it??

16 September 2013

My problems aren't even interesting to ME

- I finally passed my CPA exams!
Yay!
Awesome!
Wonderful!
I knocked out my ethics exam this weekend (a state requirement).
Woo hoo!
Now...I can't figure out what charge code (boring time/expense tracking ish) to use to get my firm to reimburse me, and no one seems to know. I'm sure it's just a matter of hunting down the appropriate HR contact, and emailing them, but....are we not an accounting firm? Surely I'm not the only person taking these exams. SURELY THIS HAS COME UP BEFORE. How about a link, guys?

- Privatized my twitter and instagram. Misuse of the word 'privatize' 100% intentional. Reasons are boring but at this time necessary, drama belongs entirely to someone else, blah blah la dee dah bloop de bloop et cetera.

- I can't find anyone to clean my house. Well I mean, I'm sure I COULD. How about this: through extremely minimal exertion of effort, no one has magically appeared who wants to clean my house for money.
I want to pay someone to clean my house. Someone whose job it is to get paid for for cleaning houses. My problems are as follows:
  1. How do you find the right STRANGER to let INTO YOUR HOME to TOUCH YOUR THINGS? I would prefer a referral from a friend who already has a non-stranger stranger doing this for his or her household, but my outreach in that regard hasn't turned up any good results.
  2. Okay, so I need to find my own stranger. Do I use...craigslist? Oh but they all only list phone numbers? So I have to....make initial contact by telephone? I don't do phone. I do not CARE for the telephone.
  3. Uhm. So if I'm going to call this person....what....do I say? 
  4. I did manage to call exactly one (1) person. That person offered, via telephone, to help me organize my life. No, no, my friend. That is not what I want. What I want is someone to scrub my toilets and mop my floors and never-you-mind about my coat closet or whether or not I really NEED all that stuff in my storage area. No thank you.
  5. Based on Problem Number 4, I have been unsuccessful in working up the will to call a second person. 
- I have two rooms in my house that stress me out. One is a loft, the other is a weird former-loft-converted-to-walled-in-room-but-still-strange...Room. The first is empty, the second is strewn with Gabriel's toys in a rather depressing fashion.
For the loft, I dunno. It's at least clean, so I suppose I can continue to ignore it. Except I feel that I should DO something with it. Wasted space! Oh the humanity!
The other room (Gabriel's 'play room' I suppose), needs help. The problem is that it follows the roof lines so there aren't WALLS (it just goes into little triangles, I know there's a word for this but I don't know what it is).  So...furniture doesn't seem to fit properly. Of the two actual, non atticky WALLS, one is dominated by a window, and the other is dominated by a staircase. I don't....I don't know how to furnish this...area.  I need storage, and I need lighting, and I'd like to put a bed up there as well. But...How??? I need someone to come in and tell me exactly what to buy and where to put it and how to make it WORK. I need like, a household stylist.
Also, is there a way to add lighting to a kitchen that doesn't involve installing light fixtures, and also doesn't look weird in a kitchen? Counter space is at a bit of a premium.

24 July 2013

Garrison Keillor, Raccoons, Lil Wayne

A man who is not Garrison Keillor has been doing The Writer's Almanac this summer and it's not okay with me.
I looked into it, because that's exactly what sort person I am, and now you know that if you didn't already.
Okay.
I actually know who this guy is, and good old GK reads his poems on a fairly regular basis, but....oh I HATE him now.
He sounds like Ben Stein, if Ben Stein was an aggressive poet aggressing literary facts at me.
He makes me glare at my radio, and then change the station.
My friend Daniel observed that they could LITERALLY just run last year's writer's almanacs on the appropriate days and we would all be happier.
And the thing is, I don't even LIKE Garrison Keillor that much. Do you listen to Prairie Home Companion? I can take it for about three minutes before the eye rolling commences, and then about two more minutes after that before I start fumbling around to change the station.
I also don't much care for poetry.
Because it's so OFTEN insufferable.
But I like The Writer's Almanac.
I love it, even!
If I miss it in the morning, I know which NPR station to tune to so that I catch it on the way home.
 It is the exact proper dosage of Mr. Garrison's voice, literary trivia, and exactly one (1) poem read in soothing low tones.
--
So, I don't like Lil Wayne, because I don't. He's just not my fave. But that doesn't mean I NEVER listen to Lil Wayne, because....because I do. Sometimes.
Anyways, there's this song ("song"?), Sky is the Limit, with the following:
And when I was five/ 
My favorite movie was the Gremlins/ 
Ain’t got shit to do with this/ 
But I just thought that I should mention

And then there's this OTHER song ("song"), which features this:
Had a dream that my dick turned to Megatron/ 
But my girl was sleeping with Decepticons

And THEN. When I turned The Writer's Almanac off in a huff this morning, they were playing Rich As Fuck on the radio (because if I'm not listening to public radio (or sports radio), I'm listening to the sorts of stations that play the sorts of songs that might be eloquently titled "Rich As Fuck"), and I thought I heard my good friend Lil say something about Fivel! Further googling revealed that he in fact says something something something "5-0" which is SIGNIFICANTLY less exciting. But! In the same song! We also have:
All rats gotta die/
Even Master Splinter

So I wanted - I mean really, really wanted - to create a list of all children's movie/show references within the Lil Wayne body of work. But it turns out that I don't want to read through all of his lyrics. So what I ACTUALLY want is for someone else to put together a comprehensive list of Lil Wayne's Children's Tale References.  Get on that, internet.
--
Do you know what happened to me last night?
Well.
I went out with a friend.
Wait.
That's not interesting.
SECONDARILY.
I got home, not terribly late, but late enough that I would be grateful to melt into a bed puddle and sleep forever. And I was all set to do that, except my cat....my cat was having a THROUGH THE FRENCH DOOR fight with a raccoon. WITH A RACCOON. They were both hissing and making weird low gutteral noises and flinging themselves at the glass.
A raccoon you GUYS
I don't know about you, but I don't really care to get involved with fighting animals, and I don't actually know what I would do, because, as you can see, my cat is inside, and the forest's raccoon is outside, which is where I want each of them, and I couldn't....I dunno. I just wanted to SLEEP. And here I have these creatures. All up in my business. 

09 May 2013

BECAUSE CAR RATS

Yesterday morning, as I was driving to work, I felt something sort of....plop. Onto my lap. And I reached down to feel what it was and I squished something that was SMALL AND FURRY AND WARM.
And that something squirmed.
And I almost died a tragic and horrible flaming death right there on the freeway on a Wednesday morning.

Car Rats.

Car.

Rats.

As I was driving my car which I drive, two baby rats fell onto my lap FROM THE NETHERS OF MY STEERING WHEEL AREA.

They were ALIVE.

I SQUISHED one.

ON ACCIDENT.

BECAUSE LIVING BABY CAR RATS FELL FROM MY CAR ONTO MY BODY AND PERSON BECAUSE THAT IS THING THAT IS REAL AND EXISTS AND CAN HAPPEN BECAUSE CAR RATS.

No.

NO NO NO.

This can't be a THING WHY IS THIS A THING.

So I used a napkin to fling the baby CAR RATS into some freeway brush, then quietly hyperventilated until a highway patrol officer pulled up to see why I was pulled over (Is there a problem ma'am?) and then I tried to pull it together and drive the rest of the way to work, even though my mom had VERY helpfully pointed out that there were DEFINITELY more babies in there. SOMEWHERE.

I kept jumping and startling and probably driving somewhat erratically because CAR RATS.

Then I had to drive HOME.

Car.

Rats.

I took my car to the dealership this morning to address the CAR RATS and while they were appropriately sympathetic about LIVE LIVING RATS ON MY PERSON WHILE I DRIVE they were sort of distressingly NOT ALARMED by car rats in general.

Apparently it's baby car rat season.

Yesterday a man came in with a nest of baby rats under his passenger seat.

Car rats.

Car rats are real and they exist and you probably have them.

I thought I knew, but I really didn't know.

Car rats are worse than toilet mice.

Why do I KNOW that?

Car rats.

CAR RATS.

CAR RATS ON MY LEGSSSSSSS

05 March 2013

San Pedro Square Market

--
As you may or may not be aware, I work in public accounting.
There's a thing about working in accounting.
I work a lot.
Like, A LOT.
A lot a lot.
No, no.
Like I really work A LOT.
When I'm not working, my number one priority is my bed.
Or maybe my son.
It's really a toss-up.
But I really like to sleep.

Anyhow.

What was I saying up there?

Oh yeah, work.

Work is a bummer.

I was given the opportunity to check out San Pedro Square Market, and I have to be honest with you: I normally choose bed, and the chances of picking a few hours of sleep are significantly increased in the January - April months.

But you know what? It just so happens that I had recently flaked out on a couple of different friend gatherings at San Pedro; enough that I had the distinct impression that this is where The Kids These Days are hanging out, and also enough that I was starting to feel both profoundly old and profoundly lame.  San Pedro is an open, square-type market (bet you wouldn't have guessed that from the name, huh?) in downtown San Jose.

So I gathered a posse, as one does.

I happen to have a particularly attractive posse that I like to gather. We are mostly accountants. Accountants and a nurse.

One of these things is not like the others.
And we did our hair Toddlers 'n Tiaras style, because once you turn 30, it's best to dress like a five-year-old when you go out.

Gettin glitzed.

Once we were all proper fancy we went to San Pedro, which really is not somewhere one needs to be fancy. Which is not to say that we were overdressed, just that it caters to an array of dress codes.

The website for San Pedro indicates that they have daytime activities and shops, but all I'm going to speak to is the alcohol bar and the taco bar. Because that's where I focused my time. Because I am a classy lady.

The square is nice and open, with a variety of shops and restaurants and such, and there are tables and an outdoor seating area for socializing. The taco bar had delicious quesadillas, which we charmed the nice young man into making even though he was closing down. The drinks were good and served by appropriately attentive bartenders. I had enough of them (the drinks, not the bartenders) that when I was specifically instructed to 'stop being awkward', I took this photo:
This means I win, right?
It was nice hanging out in downtown San Jose, which is easy to get to and close to where we all work, and therefore easy to get to after work. I went there with a mix of coworkers and not, and it was a nice open social setting ideal for talking about things besides the office, and taking awkward pictures, and getting something to eat when we were ready.

I had a lot of fun, and I would happily go there again, even as an accountant in busy season.

Photo. Bombed.
--
 I was given $50 to spend at San Pedro Square Market. I was selected for this opportunity as a member of Clever Girls Collective, and the content and opinions expressed here are my own.

05 February 2013

Beauty Routine Lacking in Scientific Method

I spend a lot of money on BEAUTY, which I use as a catch-all for skin care, eye makeup, and other whatever.
I haven't done a good job with my scientific method, so I can't definitively tell you which of these things DEFINITELY WORKS AND IS WORTH IT, but I can tell you that all of these things, in concert, give me nice skin and whatever.
Actually, no.
Some of it definitely works best of all. But some of it I just really THINK works.
I have extremely, obnoxiously sensitive skin, I'm very pale, I tend to break out if I use anything weird, and get dry and flaky if I don't tend to my skin at all, or some unflattering combination of the two. I've reached the fancy age of 30, where I've started to notice my fine lines and under eye circles.

For some things I find spending the extra money worth it, for others I find that I actually PREFER the drugstore brand.
Sephora Precision Pore Cleansing Pad, $5
I find this to be just as effective as those $150 Clarisonic pore cleaner things (which, I have one, and I sort of wish I didn't have one because I find that I use this more, it works just as well, and it costs $5). I find that I prefer the manual process to the equivalent-of-running-an-electric-toothbrush-on-my-face process, and if you hate it, you only spent $5 on it.
Sephora Brush Wand, $12
I bought this for traveling, because I always forget a key brush or get annoyed at myself for wanting to bring all of my eye makeup tools for a single night away from home.
I love it.
It hits all the eye makeup needs I want filled, and I actually PREFER the crease and smudge brushes here to some of my full sized ones. I keep it in my pencil case in my purse. It's only $12. Most of my single brushes cost way more than that.
Cetaphil Gentle Skin Cleanser, $11.49 for the giant size
This is the only face wash I've found, in the whole of my entire life, that doesn't make my face either break out or dry up.
Tarte EmphasEYES Inner Rim Brightener, $19
I bought this because I don't sleep anymore and I'm trying to look like I sleep at least sometimes. I feel like it makes me look less tired. That could be psychological. But I don't THINK so.
Clinique Even Better Eyes Dark Circle Corrector, $39.50
This stuff is expensive, but again, I don't sleep anymore. And this has made my dark circles better.
Smashbox O-GLOW Intuitive Cheek Color, $26
So I don't like blush but this one is easy to apply and doesn't LOOK like blush, if you know what I mean. And it looks good on everyone; I put it on my friends when I do their makeup.  I originally got it as a sample and liked it so much I bought the full size, which is saying something because even if I really like something I'll often only buy it once and want to move on and try another thing.
Clinique Almost Lipstick in Black Honey, $15
I have been buying and wearing and buying and wearing this lipstick for the past 15 years. I hate lipstick and I like this. It's sheer, so it's not dark as it appears. It looks universally good on everyone.
Clearsil Ultra Rapid Action Vanishing Treatment Cream, $7.99
I have tried a lot of acne spot treatments for various dollar amounts and this one works as well as any of them and you can buy it at your local drugstore for less than $10.
The Supernatural, $30
 This is like a tinted sunscreen mousse and it is my very very most favorite foundation-like product. It's very light coverage but it makes my skin look all smooth and pretty and it has sunscreen built in which is a must for me and I'm on my 4th tube of it which is REALLY saying something, as I already said about the blush. I see that it's out of stock on the Philosophy site. I used to buy it from Sephora but they stopped carrying it. This is making me feel like maybe it's on its way to discontinuation land, which would be CRUSHING to me. The tube tends to last me about a year. I don't wear it every single day, but I probably wear it several days per week.

Don't feel like finding pictures for:

Jojoba Oil (I buy mine from Trader Joe's for like $7ish I think?). I use this for my makeup remover, by putting it on a cotton pad and rubbing down my eyes and face. It feels weird to swab oil all over your face, but I find the dirt and makeup removal to be EXTREMELY satisfying, and (mind, I follow this with washing my face (Cetaphil, above)) it doesn't make me break out. And I am prone to breakouts. I also find that some eye makeup removers irritate my eyes, and this does not. And I just like it.

Coconut Oil (I buy this from Trader Joe's too, but they sell it in the food section). I use this for my eye cream. It feels nice, it smells nice, it works, it's cheap, most eye creams make my skin hurt, especially if they are meant to 'do' something.

I have also had many tried and failed 'I don't think this works that well don't buy it' experimental purchases I've made and samples that I've tried, but I'm bored of this, so I'll save that for another time.

04 February 2013

Shorter Super Bowl

- The 49ers forgot that they had a game so a ragtag band of noble fans stood in as replacements and tried to do their best.

- Their best was not, unfortunately, on par with professional football players.

- While the Niners were losing everything, Beyonce was winning at EVERYTHING.

- Then Ray Lewis killed the lights.

- This time it was rich white folks trapped in the Superdome, so people CARED about that shit.

- During the blackout, someone flew the Niners in and got them onto the field.

- It almost worked.

- Except then it didn't.

- I would TOTALLY go see The Fast & The Furious XIII.

- Gabriel almost started crying when, as I was picking him up after the game, his dad said something about rooting for the Ravens.

- "But dad! You SAID you were rooting for my team!!!"

- PBS has a better social media manager than you.

- Ibid, Oreo.

- Is the crushing sense of defeat worse when you are given some last minute hope to cling to?

- Not worse than being crushingly defeated, no.

28 January 2013

Weekend

Gabriel's birthday was Saturday.
He went to his basketball game in the morning, where his dad met him and took him up until the time of his party in the afternoon.
He had a roller skating party for the second year in a row, which I highly recommend for the following reasons:
- Comparative to other party venues, it's cheap.
- You don't have to clean up before or after.
- There is a built in activity, meaning that you don't have to organize children.
- It is a defined time period.
After that we went clothes shopping, out to dinner, and then home to open his presents from me. Giving Gabriel gifts is deeply pleasing because OH MY GOD MOM THIS IS MY FAVORITE THING AND I DIDN'T EVEN KNOW THAT I WANTED IT HOW DID YOU KNOW THAT I WANTED THIS I DIDN'T EVEN KNOW OH MY GOD I LOVE IT THANK YOU SO MUCH YOU'RE THE BEST.
It is a very satisfying response to giving gifts.

While I find that birthdays are very hard on children, and they're often impossible brats, Gabriel was in a good mood and nice and not  insufferable for the entirety of Saturday.
He made up for this by having a very difficult day yesterday.
"Gabriel had a very difficult day yesterday" is parent code for "My child was a tremendous asshole." I firmly believe that at some point ALL parents WANT to beat their children.
What's separating us from them is that instead of throwing a shoe as hard as I could at my son's head, I locked myself in my room for ten minutes while we all Tried To Calm Down.

I went to the grocery store last night and I left Gabriel with my parents (we were taking a break from each other, after I so nobly resisted flinging a shoe at his head).
Because I was Taking A Break, I sat in my car and fiddled for quite some time both before and after the trip to extend it a bit, and I walked up and down every single aisle of the store, instead of just the aisles where I planned to buy things.
Did you know that the 'hispanic foods' aisle includes an entire refrigerator section full of Tampico? I might have put that in the 'frat party' section of the store, if there was such a thing. It would also include red SOLO cups, condoms, and rohypnol. 

23 January 2013

2013 Wishes

I hesitate to call these resolutions, as some of them have nothing to do with me or my behavior, but here are some wishes I have for 2013.

- I hope that 2013 is the year that I actually stop hearing from that-ex-who-gets-creepier-every-time-he-contacts-me-or-leaves-things-for-me-on-my-doorstep. I have reasonable hopes for this one, as he doesn't know where I live anymore, and I think he's finally blocked across all avenues of communication.

- I really really really want the 49ers to win the Super Bowl.

- CPA license? I have one more exam to pass, and assuming I do, I can send all my paperwork into the state in August. Let's assume that I do. That's a hope. I hope that I do. Assume nothing!

- Let's make passing that fourth CPA exam an official wish/resolution.

- Finish knitting the hat I started before busy season started, make a non-hat garment (could be for myself or someone else).

- Go on vacation.

- Live through busy season.

- Return this pair of shoes to Zappos before the 365 day expiration date on my ability to do that.

- Hang the rest of my curtains.

- Put up this extremely pain in the ass and messy looking window film stuff that I bought.

- Finish painting my half-painted bathroom.

- Take some pictures (I'm not going to hem myself in with a QUANTITY GOAL) with my Real Actual Camera.

- Finish the tattoo I started 4 or 5 or god knows how many years ago (I actually have an appointment to do so, making this goal pretty attainable).

- Try to be less standoffish with and mean to boys.

- However, also: Maybe punch the next douchebag I meet right in the crotch.

- Put some pictures on my walls.

- Fix my broken shoe rack.

- This is really turning into more of a house To Do List, isn't it?

- But this feels like stuff that will LIKELY take me all year to get to.

- I still have boxes that I need to unpack, you know.

- Unpack the rest of my boxes!

- Organize Gabriel's room situation (he has a room SITUATION).

- Pay more attention to my cat.

- Get some sleep.

- See my friends.

- This got boring.

- I think I'm going to hit publish now.

22 January 2013

2012, or whatever

1. What did you do in 2012 that you’d never done before?
Got a degree in accounting, drove on a field trip, took Gabriel on an airplane (took Gabriel on vacation), stayed with someone I had never met in real life prior to staying with them, started my new job.  

2. Did you keep your new year’s resolutions, and will you make more for next year?
My new years resolutions were have more sex and make morally unambiguous choices.
So...yes?

3. Did anyone close to you give birth?
I have two adorable baby nieces born this year, Susannah and June.  

4. Did anyone close to you die?
No, thankfully.  

5. What countries did you visit?
The United States of America.  

6. What would you like to have in 2013 that you lacked in 2012?
Money, time, whomp whomp.  

7. What dates from 2012 will remain etched upon your memory, and why?
July 22 - Susannah!
October 5 - June!
July 6 - My last day of classes EVER (I hope).  

8. What was your biggest achievement of the year?
Master's degree 2.0, got the job I wanted, passed 3 of my 4 CPA exams.  

9. What was your biggest failure?
Failing 1 of my 4 CPA exams, feeling like a shitty friend, having a lot of bad things happen to my people, discovering panic attacks.  

10. Did you suffer illness or injury?
I went off an anxiety cliff in August based on various THINGS.
And I got the flu. The real INFLUENZA flu.
I thought I was going to die.  

11. What was the best thing you bought?
Vacations.  

12. Whose behavior merited celebration?
Gabey! I know he's mine and I'm biased but he really is an excellent child. Even though he's also a brat. We've had a lot of big changes this year and I'm working long hours and he's just been wonderful.

13. Whose behavior made you appalled and depressed?
Various people who it turns out are all woman-blamey when it comes to assault.
This douchebag who dicked around one of my friends and then went on a weird anti-me campaign.
A couple guys who were dicks to me.  

14. Where did most of your money go?
Living my life or whatever.  

15. What did you get really, really, really excited about?
East coast visit! Reading Gabriel chapter books, how much Gabriel loves reading, Hawaii, graduating, paychecks, NIECES.  

16. What song will always remind you of 2012?
Some combination of Carly Rae Jepson and Drake.   

17. Compared to this time last year, are you:
a) happier or sadder? Happier, I think. Maybe about the same feelings-wise but on an overall happiness trajectory.
b) thinner or fatter? Thinner? I'm not sure. I think I'm actually the same but I feel a lot better about my body.
c) richer or poorer? Richer, but only in that I have an income.  

18. What do you wish you’d done more of?
Reading.  

19. What do you wish you’d done less of?
Angsting.  

20. How did you spend Christmas?
With family.
(I originally filled out this survey in an email for my friend Molly. This response was EDITED).  

21. Did you fall in love in 2012?
I dunno.  

22. What was your favorite TV program?
Girls, Game of Thrones, and I'm totally late to the party but I just recently discovered and am in love with The League.  

23. Do you hate anyone now that you didn’t hate this time last year?
I have made some strong FEELINGS RE-ALLIANCES, yes.  

24. What was the best book you read?
The sequel to Daughter of Smoke and Bone, the name of which I cannot remember.  

25. What was your greatest musical discovery?
The Avett Brothers  

26. What did you want and get?
A job, a degree.  

27. What did you want and not get?
Time.

28. What was your favorite film of this year?
The Hunger Games or The Batman movie, which I'm pretty sure are the only two films I SAW this year.  

29. What did you do on your birthday, and how old were you?
I turned 30. I worked, it was a Wednesday. My mom made me dinner. Boring, boring.  

30. What is one thing would have made your year immeasurably more satisfying?
A housekeeper.  

31. How would you describe your personal fashion concept in 2012?
Professional Hobo  

32. What kept you sane?
Wine, coffee.

 33. Which celebrity/public figure did you fancy the most?
I dunno. Anderson Cooper?
Random fact: I JUST THIS WEEK discovered that Channing Tatum is a guy? I mean, I hadn't really tried to find out or looked at a picture or anything but my eyes happened to be on the television when someone said his name and it was like...whoa. I have been hearing that name all year and just been operating on the ASSUMPTION that we were all talking about a lady.  

34. What political issue stirred you the most?
The election, particularly watching all election coverage on Fox News. OMG.  

35. Who did you miss?
My friends. Gabriel.  

36. Who was the best new person you met?
I have some pretty epically good new coworkers.

 37. Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2012.
My friends put up with me, so they must really love me.  

38. Quote a song lyric that sums up your year.
So, I gathered up my savvy
Bought myself a business suit

15 January 2013

A Preponderance of Gifts

So Gabriel's birthday is coming up, and I bought him things.
The following things, specifically, if you are interested, or perhaps searching for what to buy a 7-year-old boy.
If your 7-year-old is like mine.
Which he (or she) might be. 
Sleeping Bag
I bought this over the summer because Gabriel doesn't have a sleeping bag and it seems like the sort of thing that Little Boys Need, but I never gave it to him, and then I didn't give it to him for Christmas either, so now I'm giving it to him for his birthday.
Tent!
I have very fond memories of tenting up in the field as a kid. We live near some prime tenting fields. We also don't own a tent. Also, it goes nicely with the sleeping bag.
Basketball
I don't really feel this warrants explanation. I got him the size 5 one cuz that's the size they play with on his basketball team.
The Flight of Dragons
I really, really loved this movie when I was a kid. It is paired in my mind with The Last Unicorn, but the copy at our video rental place was at some point irreparably damaged so I saw this one a lot less and therefore have always coveted it a lot more. This is more of a share-my-childhood-with-my-child gift than anything else. It's about falling into a dragon board game and trying to save the good dragons from the fourth evil dragon brother/emperor/something?? The details are fuzzy.
StarFox 64 3D
Bought this on internet recommendations based on Gabriel's love of Kid Icarus and Lego Star Wars.
No Roses for Harry!
Harry by the Sea
I like to buy Gabriel books, he likes Harry books, I don't mind listening to him read them to me. Boom.
LEGO Space Bug Obliterator
Gabriel has specifically requested Legos for his birthday, and he spent his Christmas money from his great-grandmother on some other parts of this set, and this is his first 'big' Lego set.

I had a lot of fun shopping for Gabriel this year.

I also bought hims some clothes, but he really just needs clothes, so while I'm going to add them to his presents so he can open a great mountain of gifts like the spoiled child that he is, I don't count those as birthday presents so much as things I have to buy my child.

03 January 2013

Sick Forever

I feel like I've been sick forever. I was off work from 12/20 through to yesterday. In my mind this was to be a glorious two weeks of basking, holiday enjoyment, house fixing, fussing around, and so forth. In reality I got slammed with a head cold followed by a stomach bug followed by the return of the cold but more in the chestal region followed by I think maybe I have the flu.

The flu part is the worst part. I don't get sick very often, or stay sick for very long, and I haven't been this sick or sick for this long in years. Yesterday I spent a good portion of my work day trying Very Hard not to fall asleep.

I am fully aware that sick people shouldn't go to work and contaminate others but I had a moment of morning perkiness yesterday that got me into the office and didn't fall apart until I sat down at my desk. And then I was already AT work, which is really 2/3 of the going to work battle, and work is really far away from my home anyways, so at some point you're there and you're going to stay.

Today I'm at work again. I think that I might be slightly better because I feel less fluey but I also think that I might just be better medicated. It's difficult to tell.

Yesterday I bought DayQuil from Target that expired in July 2010. It is baffling to me that accidentally buying medication that expired 2.5 years ago is even an option. The other things I bought at Target include a space heater, two men's sweaters, fuzzy socks, and sweatpants. In case you were wondering what impulse purchases look like to the infirm.