courtcat: (ADD)
( May. 3rd, 2010 09:57 pm)
So, last weekend was Penguicon, which is made of awesome and win - this was my third year, I think, and there hasn't been one that I didn't have a fantastic time at.  We went with kids this time, which made things challenging in a lot of ways, but it also made them awesome in some others, so it's a toss-up as to whether or not we'll bring all three again.  Morgen . . . is pretty much coming.  She volunteers, she behaves near-impeccably, she cosplays, she gets authors to twitpic her.  I have a feeling this kid's gonna be a con staple for the long haul.  (Next year she wants to dress up as one of [livejournal.com profile] jimchines princesses, and also Molly Grue.  I forgot who she said she wanted to be for ConFusion next year, but if [livejournal.com profile] yuki_onna is going to be there, I would lay money on September again.  And Wendy, Dorothy or Alice may have been mentioned.)

At any rate, it's time for the highlights, organized by day.  Sort of.  Maybe.  See the icon!

Friday was a shitty, stressful day.  We didn't even get to the hotel until around nine, so there was rushing to the room to eat our super late Burger King dinner and get the kids ready for and in bed.  From there, once they were settled, I left to wander - downstairs first, where I saw Stone Crazy Pirates play a few songs, which was quite entertaining but not quite what I was in the mood for.  So there was con suite for free beer (I don't remember what I had, but I didn't like it much) and then wandering for parties.  I met David the First at sometime during this - he was lots of fun!  We snarked about the karaoke song selection together, and wandered around for a while until he had to go to bed.  I also made friends with some barfleet-ites and got the special wristband.  Other than that, nothing of note happened Friday - eventually, I went to bed.

Saturday, though, was a day made mostly of pure, distilled awesome.  Morgen cosplayed September from [livejournal.com profile] yuki_onna 's The Girl Who Circumnavigated Fairyland in a Ship of Her Own Making (there will be picspam to follow, for those of you who didn't see her and/or aren't my facebook friends).  I did nothing of consequence most of the day - wandered around pushing a stroller, watched Morgen pitch people on Cat's book, shopped (got presents for friends and lots of books and cool new t-shirts for the fam), etc.  The first ZOMG SO COOL thing didn't happen until book signing (where Morgen promptly pitched Cherie Priest, Tobias Buckell, [as an aside, crazily talented and successful (by varying definitions of such) people my own age and close to intimidate the heck out of me] and a couple other authors before giving them ribbons, and Cherie Priest took the aforementioned twitpic.  I was later (after sticking my head into swing dancing with Morgen in her lovely September costume and deciding that it was far too crowded for a stroller and such) handed free books, one signed.  Coincidence?  I think not.  (Breakfast was at the hotel restaurant.  Lunch was con suite, as was dinner.  Nothing spectacular in any occasion.)  Absolutely most important, coolest things about Saturday, though?  Meeting Molly and David, with whom I spent most of the waking portion of the night.  There was dancing, drinking, karaoke, more dancing and drinking, running down twelve flights of stairs in a way I haven't done since high school . . . basically, there were hi-jinks and shenanigans, and I had a blast, and they are both now high on my list of favorite people in the world.

Sunday involved more shopping (but only one bit of buying) and a sketch by Randy Milholland of Som*Pos fame, but was mostly pushing around a stroller and watching Liana do stuff while Morgen volunteered (for four hours!!!) and Jerry went to stuff.  Liana made a new BFF amongst all this, and there were good-byes and then it was time to come home.

My pictures are all on my facebook for those of you who know me there, but here, some picspam of Morgen in her costume and Liana (and her new BFF) and Kaelinn being adorable.

.....or not, because I can't get the insert a picture thing to work.  Will try over on LJ once I post this!

Today was Monday, and not just any Monday, but Brownie Meeting Monday.  The rest of the week should be better!  I may well start reading one of those new books and do a review somewhere, at some point.  I meant to start with the La Roux album for my first - maybe I should finish that one of these days.

courtcat: (Shadow)
( Mar. 15th, 2010 09:39 am)
So, I hate losing internet friends.  Losing friends in general pretty much sucks, but in physical life there's generally some sort of closure - an argument, someone moving away, different priorities that drive people further and further apart.  Things change, people change.  Online it's harder (or so I think); a person is there one day and gone the next as often as not, and sometimes you never find out what happened to that person.  Sometimes it's as simple of a growing apart as it is in real life, but that's rarer in my experience - people fade.  They disappear.  Things in their own real lives eat them alive.  And then those of us who are still around are left wondering.  This is not always the case, of course, but of the internet friends I've lost (which have been many, and in a sad turn of events, may well be more friends than I've ever had in my day to day, face to face life), the majority have been by this slipping away.  And it's bothering me now because it's happened again, if with more closure than usually happens.  And I'm sad.

I still wonder about various people I've known on the internet who've wandered into and out of my life.

And then I feel pathetic when I realize that all the people I'm closest with, the people I open up to, are people online.  Or people from summer camp when I was a kid, but that's a whole different story.

In other news (since this is a whine-and-complain blogging), Morgen lost her school binder at some point over the weekend.  It's somewhere in the house, but since the house is trashed, goodness only knows where that somewhere is.  And it's occurred to me that a big part of the reason I can't get the girls to do even simple picking up after themselves when I ask is because they both watch Jerry either say sure, he'll do what I ask and then not do it, or just ignore what I ask him to do entirely.  Which is shitty, because then I realize I was probably a lot the same way for my mom when I was a kid.  "Daddy doesn't have to do what you ask, why should I?  Clearly, it's not important."  And I have no patience for fucking up with school stuff, even this young; I was a fuck up when it came to school, and look what/where it got me, three beautiful and brilliant children not withstanding.  Anyway, Morgen's blazingly smart, but man, I don't know if it's a lack of common sense or what.  It kills me sometimes, and today was one of those times.  Is one of those times, I guess.  And I'm not sure if taking away the extra stuff she does until she figures out the school thing is the way to fix it or if that's just taking away her outlet and relaxation time.  Goodness knows, I didn't have much of either when I was little, and now I don't even know how to deal with it on the rare and odd time it comes my way.  But at the same time, Girl Scouts is a treat.  I don't know that she should have it when she's not keeping it together for the important stuff . . . but I'm the leader, so I'm screwed for the rest of the year at least anyway, even if I do pull my kid out.  Which means she'd be sitting in the hallway doing homework or something while I'm leading a meeting, so . . . I don't even know.

Today's making me want to pull my hair out.  Can I have a do over?

courtcat: (Shadow)
( Feb. 16th, 2010 08:17 am)
I haven't written poetry consistently in a long time, and recently I wrote a gaming moodpost in free verse. So, my interest has been revived! Only instead of bleeding my angst onto the page (or screen, or . . . whatever [for yoooooooooouuuuuuuuu]), I'm going to be productive and practice various forms of poetry. I like this - I thought of starting with sonnet, as that's the form with which I'm most familiar, but then didn't feel like deciding which kind, and whether to use iambic pentameter or some other structure. So here, I give you my first ever attempt at a sestina, as improper as it is. You will find no iambic pentameter here, alas, though when I revisit this form over the next couple weeks, that may change. My six words, chosen at random from my really awesome Brewer's, are peddler, hearth, Beltane, sheep, tumbler and earth.
A difficult spot to get out of )

Musings: I really kind of hate this form, but it could just be the repetition without the constraints of proper meter. Also, the last tercet is awful. I'll keep working with this form, though, for the next couple of weeks.

In other news, my living room is again full of girl scout cookies, though it's thankfully not nearly as many as last year. I'm not the cookie mom, so I'm not in charge of everyone else's stuff! I just have to deliver my cookies and collect for them and make all the various deposits, which is awesome. I also need to figure out wtf happened with the money from the nut sale, because that shit's complicated as hell. Next year, I've decided we're going to do nuts and not magazines, or that if we do do magazines, it'll be through the online stuff because that way, it's all figured out by the site's algorithms or formulae or whatever and I don't have to sit here figuring out how much we keep and how much we send away and what gets send where. There has to be a more efficient meatspace way of handling that, though I have no idea what it would be. It was just a huge pain in the ass all the way 'round. Other than that, the troop is going pretty well - I both love and hate this time of year, where it starts seeming like the kids are out of school more than in. Yesterday should have been a meeting, would have been if it weren't for this week being midwinter break. In a month and a half, maybe two months, we have spring break. Not to mention conferences and all the various other days off of school here and there. But it's okay, because it's still less of a pain than the summer, with constant park madness and all. We've been missing piano this year because of lack of funds, but we've still been crazy busy with the extra homework that goes along with being in the advanced class and all. Liana just turned five at the beginning of the month, and can't wait for kindergarten to start, so it's crazy and exciting and busy here, as always.

LOOK MA, TWO CUTS IN ONE ENTRY )

And . . . that's about it, really.  Whee.

courtcat: (Adventure)
( Jan. 26th, 2010 03:14 pm)
So, last Saturday I went to ConFusion with my eldest and youngest girl-children (I say as if I have any other kind of child).  We went for a couple reasons, even though it was only for the day (and only half of it at that - I'm still sad that Morgen missed KidFilk).  We went to see Cat Valente, who I think is made of awesome and win.  And Jim Hines, who is the same.  And a few friends I've made over the handful of cons I've been to since my geekitude reached this sort of enormity.  We also went because Peter S. Beagle was the author GoH, and I've loved The Last Unicorn since I was a very small child, and my small children love the movie now, though Morgen's only just old enough to start reading the book.  And because SJ Tucker was the music GoH.

Now, I was first introduced to SJ Tucker about the same time as I was introduced to Cat Valente and formally inducted into the delicious smelling cult that is BPAL.  By the same people, in fact.  I can thank Amal and Jess for many of my new-ish obsessions, I must say, which is another thing entirely!  So, anyway.  I've listened to Blessings and Girl in the Garden through some pretty rough times.  Same with reading various works of Cat's.  And RPing with Amal and Jess, for that matter, though RPing is a far older obsession than my acquaintance with either of them.  But all of that pales when I think about standing in that particular circle of people at Con.  (And of Morgen and Sheryl's kid taking to each other almost immediately.  That was pretty awesome, too.)  I'm not . . . a very open person.  This will surprise those of you who only know me online, no doubt!  I've gotten considerably worse about this as I got older.  I used to be able to walk up and join almost any conversation seamlessly, but now I stand back and watch more often than I take part.  Not so, standing there with Cat, Sooj, Sheryl, K, D, and everyone else.  I don't often feel like I'm part of things, and that was a completely different thing. Cat talks about her tribe a lot, and I figure we all have them, somewhere.  I stood there, talking and laughing, and listening to Morgen talk to Sheryl and Cat and everyone, and having Sooj talk about and make faces at the very stripey baby on my hip, and it felt amazing.  Like, I'm still aglow!  I miss experiences like that; I need to surround myself with people who are conducive to producing them more often.

It was awesome watching Morgen in the space talk with the science GoH and having both kids let me sit through a couple of panels that had nothing to do with music, even.  This ConFusion may have been my best con yet, and I really kind of can't wait to bring kids to PenguiCon even though there isn't dedicated children's programing there.  We didn't take much advantage of it at ConFusion, anyway, and if Morgen's in kid stuff the whole time, it'll be harder for her to pimp Fairyland the way she wants to!

In other news, Jerry finally has a job again.  He started yesterday and it's only a short-term contract, but it's better than nothing.  Finding a job anywhere is just about impossible right now, I know!  But this seems to be especially true in the metro Detroit area, where everything is tied to the auto industry and companies are going out of business left and right.  I don't know how long it'll last, but it's nice to breathe a bit easier for a little while, at least.

Brownies is going well - I can't believe it's almost February already.  I remember doing fundraisers for things like that when I was in school - not just cookies, but other stuff.  Though I think it was in junior high, so I guess it wouldn't have been Girl Scouts any more.  Music had long since eaten my life by then.  Um . . . I don't think there's anything else that interesting that's been going on, not that most of this is to anyone but me.  So, I'll stop writing now and come up with something better to write next time!

courtcat: (Quieter)
( Oct. 22nd, 2009 03:15 pm)
First things first, before I forget!

Halloweenie reviews part one. )

There, that's done.
The oddities of HTML and formatting boggle me sometimes, but it all looks right from here, as I can tell.  And, I am having a momentary inferiority complex as my reviews are rather blah and boring when compared to the friends who got me into this with their writing of gorgeousness and all.  Oh, well, they get the point across sufficiently.

And thus, onward!

Stress is . . . somewhat alleviated.  I mean, it's still there; Jerry's still unemployed and so we're still having trouble making ends meet.  His parents are a huge help financially if not in any other way.  Morgen's settling into a routine at school (OMG FINALLY) and dealing a lot better with all the changes brought not only by being in second grade, but by being in the advanced class.  Liana's getting used to not having Morgen around and being stuck with parents who have to pay as much attention to her baby sister as to her.  And Kaelinn's getting used to . . . well, being, I guess.  Liana's the same OMG LOUD ball of perpetual motion as always; I love her to death, but I certainly don't pity her future teachers, I tell you.

The drama I at least half expected with an old friend hasn't happened, and though I'm sort of waiting for the shoe to drop, I'm far more relaxed about it.  We're not hanging out or anything, and I'm not encouraging my kids to hang out with hers (long story in its own right), but it's alright.  Or . . . I'm alright with it, though that makes me sound terribly self centered.  People I used to work with ages ago have found me on facebook - it's always strange when that happens, like when eighty gazillion people that I graduated with suddenly found me a while ago.  I owe one of Morgen's friend's moms fifteen bucks because she brought a U of M shirt back from Ann Arbor for Morgen.  Brownies are going well - I need to read the kid book chapter and activities, though I'm pretty well accquainted with the leader book section - except for the renovations being done in our meeting room and displacing us; I need to figure out what we're going to do for meetings until that's done.

NaNo is almost here!  I have an idea and have decided to use the snowflake method of outlining in hopes that I actually finish something for once, rather than writing and writing until I get bored with it, and losing interest somewhere along the way.  It's a pretty exciting prospect, that, and I kind of can't wait.

But now, it's time to go pick up Morgen from school.  I'll try to remember to update more often!
courtcat: (Ship)
( Sep. 18th, 2009 10:44 am)
I'm all kinds of stressed out.  My house is a mess and never gets any cleaner (well, neater - it's clean enough, but man, we have too much shit and it's everywhere) no matter what I do (having three children under the age of ten [though one's only two months old] and a husband who rarely helps unless it's to make more mess does that, I suppose).  School's back in session for Morgen, so there's all the stuff that goes with that - Brownies, DI, volunteering, this function, that fundraiser, etc.  I'm buried up to my chest and it's getting hard to breath.  =\
( Sep. 8th, 2009 09:25 am)
So, today was the day.

Morgen went back to school, and started second grade in the 2/3 split, which is the advanced class.  In this class, there are six girls, four of them in third grade, and twelve boys - I'm not sure of the ratio there, but I know for sure three of them are in second like Morgen.  She's not very happy about this two boys to one girl thing, which is funny, because most of the time she'd rather hang out with boys than girls.

I was frustrated because I had to use her camera, which is my old camera, and so I only took two pictures.  Stupid camera is a piece of shit, but here they are - first, Morgen and one of her best friends, and another girl who's friends with the best friend and was in Morgen's kindergarten class.  I would like to state for the record that my daughter, the strawberry blonde, looks JUST LIKE ME when I was that age, except my hair was OMGRED.

No, I'm not going to put these behind a cut.



Next, Morgen and the other second grade girl in her class - this girl is adorable and was home schooled last year though she was in kindergarten with the blonde in the middle of the picture above.  She was seriously bawling when everyone first went inside, but she calmed down and seemed pretty happy when I asked her to be in a picture with Morgen.  She's one of a set of triplets, the other two of which are boys and also in the 2/3 split with her and Morgen.



Why yes, that is my daughter being a very Hufflepuff-y Gryffindor; some little boy, one of the third graders, had just said something snotty and pushed the other girl out of his way.  Morgen punched him in the kidney (not very hard, she's only seven) when no one was looking and then tried to make this little girl feel better.  I know I shouldn't encourage violence, and I do my best not to, but I'm amazingly proud that she'll look out for other people like that, especially when I know for a fact (have seen it happen, in fact) that she'll take no end of shit on her own account and not say a word.

( Jul. 14th, 2009 09:33 pm)
I'm really, really tired, and I haven't slept well in . . . well, years to be honest.  But it's been worse for the last few days, at least, and part of it's because even if I do go lie down, I can't fall asleep until I'm tired enough that the exhaustion chill kicks in and I'm shivering with it.  Which is always an interesting thing when it's eighty degrees outside.

The room-cleaning (meaning my bedroom) is coming along nicely, though it would come along much faster if I had some help with it.  Sort of, anyway, as a lot of it is washing, sorting, folding and putting away laundry, and thus I have to stop to catch up with what's already piled in the basement periodically before I can bring more down.  It's a good thing we have a bit to do this and get it done!

Baby-wise, everything's fine . . . though I'm rather tired of my feet being so swollen that even my sandals don't fit me properly.  Also, being hugely pregnant in July sucks, even when the summer's a relatively mild one.  I can't imagine that breastfeeding a baby through August and September is going to be pleasant either . . . ugh.  Ah well, we do what we must and all that, and at least my in-laws won't be in town around the due date, which makes the whole labor and delivery thing lots less stressful.

Swim team's almost over for the summer, though then there's the last two weeks of classes and lessons and things before school, and the mad rush to get everything ready for that; it's strange, I think, how much busier my summers are than my school year.  When I was a kid, it always seemed the opposite . . . but now, I've been terribly careful about how many activities I allow the girls to join a year, so that helps.  I think.  I'm not running them around constantly, at least, during the school year, though this year may be a bit more hectic than those prior just because Morgen may well be adding two activities instead of just one.  She wants to keep swimming in the fall/winter, and so I think I'll let her try out for that team, plus she's adding Destination Imagination to the roster, on top of Girl Scouts and the piano lessons she had last year.  Then there's Liana and she'll probably stick with ballet . . . man.  It'll be kind of crazy, but in a good way.  I hope.
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