Friday, March 30, 2012

Dream a little dream for ZZZZZZZ

Aw man, this topic makes me want to take a nap.

No really! My tiny adventures? They're my dreams, people! And I don't mean my "get a book published and have an art show and adopt a kid" dreams...I mean my honest to goodness "I dreamt I was in a tea house with Sailor Moon but Sean Connery was there reciting The Wrath of Khan and I think you were there too but you had octopus legs" dreams.

Now I won't turn this into a journal for my sonambular disturbances because nothing's more boring than other people's dreams...sometimes. But I truly LOVE my dreams. I've been writing them down for a long time and because I do that, I tend to remember them for an equally long time, down to the itty details. (Why yes, I DID have a dream about Sean Connery reenacting Wrath of Kh---oh, you're not listening anyway.)

My dreams often play out like full blown movies in my head. Movie with characters, plot and settings to beat the band...every other night is an adventure in itself! At the risk of sounding like a certain famous vampire author, I have to admit that a good amount of inspiration for my stories comes from my nighttime brain parties.

I know it's not an adventure for everyone. Heck, my husband hasn't remembered a dream in 12 years (he still talks about the Saddam Hussein lunchtime one he had in college). But to me? It actually makes me WANT to relax and go to bed. This, for a chronic stressball who sleeps on her manuscripts, is a big deal.

Have you ever had a dream that found its way into a manuscript? Or a dream that stuck with you for years and years? Come adventure with ZZZZZZZZZZZZZ 

I should get up and go do something and stop dreaming and NOPE ZZZZZ

Thursday, March 29, 2012

I'm Loooooooooooost!

For someone who likes to travel I have a horrible sense of direction. I also have a strong tendency to be uh . . . less than calm when I don't know where I am.

Thus, when I told a friend of mine that I would visit her in Imperial Beach (A whole *gasp* hour and half's drive from where I lived) I was already nervous. Yeah, I wanted to see her but but I don't KNOW those roads. How will I know I'm going the right way? How will I know which lane I should be in? What if I have to pass through down town?

Calm down Taryn. You're going to be ok. You got this.

No. I don't. You're totally lying to me.

Probably. Just go with it.

So I listened to my inner liar and got the directions to my friend's house. Only the directions were coming from my house not the campus where I happened to be when I set out.




Oh, calm down. You know how to get to the eight from your school. You can just start the directions after that.

After taking the one freeway I hate most in all of San Diego unscathed, I was ready to go. On the right track. I could even see all the nice signs telling me I was headed toward the right junction.

Until I stopped seeing them.


Let me back up a bit. (aka this is where I stop the action for an undisquized info dump) About a week after I got my driver's liscence I got in a hit and run downtown San diego. No one got hurt and I was able to fix my car within a week but that was after three hours waiting around in a neighborhood I don't know with a bumberless car, making reports to the police, making sure it was legal to drive home etc. It was SCARY. Also about a month after that I got on the eight west instead of the eight east and ended up downtown instead of home. Also, also, the friend I was with during the acident was the same friend I was going to see in the adventure I am currenly relaying to you. I was really freaked.

So I got off at the next off ramp and called my friend to ask her where I was, where I was suposed to be, if I was going to die. She told me, yes, I'd passed the first junction but there was another coming up. I'd be fine.

Reluctant to believe her, I got back on the freeway. I watched the signs carefully untill I saw the next five junction. I merged into the correct lane. Yes. I got this. Everything is ok. Wait. That sign says LA.

I"M NOT GOING TO LA!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I pulled out of the lane at the last minute and got off the freeway to make another phone call. My friend sighed, told me that yes, that off ramp led to LA, but it also branched off to the correct freeway. (stupid sign, not telling me this) She even patiently looked up how to get to said correct freeway from where I was. So I followed her new directions and was finally on the right path. No more worries.

Until I realize that the five zips straight through downtown.


Calm down. Don't painic. Don't think about getting rear ended. Don't think about one way streets. You're on the freeway. It will go straight through. La la la la la la. I don't even see those sky scrapers reminding me of my back bumber dragging behind me as I look for a safe place to stop my car. Everything is honkey dory. Except without the honking because that means angry drivers and angry drivers are mean and don't let me get in the lanes I need. I'm not thinking about mean drivers.

Finally I got past my inner horrors. Just in time for new ones to set in. My friend didn't tell me how far exactly it would be before I got to the off ramp. I knew what it was called but what if I'd passed it? What if I couldn't get to the lane in time when I finally saw it? What if I suddenly couldn't remember what it was called? I'd never been on that part of the five in my life but I was pretty sure if I just kept going I would end up in Mexico or soemthing.


Calm down. It's ok. The off ramp will be really soon. Any minute now. Probably the next one. Or the one after that. Ok, the one after that. Although that last street name was awfully similar . . .

Eventually I pulled off at the right place. In releif I started looking for the cross street. Eleventh street. Ninenth street. Seventh's street. Ok. I'm looking for third. I'm definately goint the right way.

When suddenly the streets stop having number names. Instead of a residential nieghborhood I am on a long stretch that says "scenic rout". It is very pretty but it tells me I am going to Corodado.


Not knowing, what else to do I stayed on the road for some time, riduculously hoping the number names would come back. Finally I pulled over in what looked like a very private residential neighborhood and called my friend again. She had forgotten to mention that I had to merge to stay on the right road.

I'm not going to lie. I was in tears by then. But I turned around and eventually found third street. And I talked my friend into comeing home with me so I wouldn't get lost on the way back.

I don't like getting lost.

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

One Ring to Rule Them All

Mundane adventures can sometimes be the most interesting. The movie "Jingle All The Way" comes to mind, where Arnold Schwarzenegger spends the entire film hunting down a particular toy for his son. He gets into loads of hijinks along the way, culminating in a parade where he ends up on a float as the character who the action figure is of.

My own mundane adventure isn't anything like that, but it was one of the most interesting--and not in a good way--experiences of my life.

Those who've followed me for awhile have heard about Her Highness the Missus before. What you don't know, however, is that the engagement ring she now wears is actually the second engagement ring I bought her.

Let me paint the scene. It's early 2008, and I'm busy making plans to pop the question. HHTM spent much of those weeks emailing me choices of engagement rings to buy her. I was perfectly fine with this, since it meant all I had to do was pick from a list and would be guaranteed to get something she likes.

The ring that I ended up purchasing was a trinity tri-stone ring with princess-cut diamonds, similar to the one below.

This was roughly four years ago now, and I was able to find the same store I purchase the ring from but I'm not sure if this is the correct ring from their stock.

Anyway, I ordered the ring from the store--which ended up being a sole proprietor who traveled around to Renaissance Faires and the like. I mention that piece of information because it's going to be important later.

So we get to Disney World for our August 2008 vacation, and on the evening of August 4, 2008--our one year-anniversary by the way--I propose to HHTM after taking her on a horse-drawn carriage ride at the Port Orleans resort. I even sprang for a pillow made of carnations, which included a tiara and a glass slipper. (Yes, the Cinderella theme is not lost on me.)

HHTM loved the ring. The best part was that she bragged about it coming directly from Ireland. And, after we got back from Disney, she told practically everyone about it.

Here's where the adventure part comes in. The Saturday after we returned from Florida, HHTM was making the bed in her room when she hit her left hand. Then something terrible happened ...

One of the diamonds fell out.

I received a frantic phone call right after it happened and rushed over to calm her down. I got handed a bag with the diamond and the ring inside it, and was asked to take care of either getting the ring fixed or replaced.

So I called the man I bought the ring from. He wasn't available, having traveled to a Ren Faire in Ohio or some such. (Again, nearly four years ago.)

Then I tried to call the manufacturer in Ireland, but I didn't have a phone that could dial internationally. So I sent an email. I waited until Monday to get the reply from the manufacturer, who said I had to go back through the gent I purchased the ring from.

The store owner finally got in touch with me after a few days, and I told him what had happened. He asked me to bring the ring back to his shop so he could see the ring. Only then would he consider refunding my purchase price so I could get another ring.

While we were waiting for a response from someone, we took the ring to a local jeweler. This particular jeweler is the place my father-in-law has patronized for roughly 30 years now. The jeweler refused to fix the piece, and was the one to tell what had happened--one of the arms holding the diamond in had broken clean off. It was poor construction, according to him.

Anyway, I finally got time to take the ring back to where I bought it. The owner looked it over as I told him what the other jeweler said. Thankfully, I didn't have a fight on my hands ... even though I was prepared for one. The owner immediately offered me a full refund, which I gladly took.

I then went back to the jeweler who'd inspected the ring, and bought HHTM a 14 karat gold, 1/2-carat princess-cut diamond ring. This is now the ring she's wearing along with her wedding band. And we've never had a single problem.

So that's my mundane adventure. What's yours?

P.S. The second ring was a few hundred dollars cheaper than the first one, so HHTM likes to say I "cheaped out." This is despite the fact she actually loves the ring, which I quickly remind her of.

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

A Quest for Converse

This week's theme at the Archives is "Mundane Adventures." Yesterday, L.T. Host relayed the perilous tale of driving in the rain on San Diego freeways. My adventure was just two weekends ago, during one of my best friends weddings (in which I was the matron of honor - by the way, my speech went very well!).

The bride had ordered a pair of purple Converse from the online store to wear at the reception. Her groom and the groomsmen we wearing green Converse, and she wanted purple to go with the wedding colors. When they arrived, she realized they were just a bit too big so she sent them back and requested a rush order. However, the people at Converse must not have understood that she REALLY meant it. The following Tuesday just wasn't going to cut it. So this is the adventure we found ourselves in, less than 24 hours before "I Do" ...

'Twas the night before the wedding, and all through Orange County, not a purple Converse shoe was in a size 7, not even a knock-off. The bride and her bridemaids rushed from Target to Wal-Mart, the only stores still open at 11pm, to find the elusive purple shoes. One was too faded, another just too hideous. We were glued to our phones and Yelp apps searching for the nearest shoe stores, calling when one looked promising.

And lo! A glimmer of hope! There was a Converse store a mere two miles from our hotel that didn't have purple, but they had some new ivory ones with gold trim. The salesperson promised that they would be perfect (she was a bride-to-be too). Our bride was elated - gold would go well (she was wearing tall sparkly gold heels for the ceremony, after all). We ended our pursuit for the evening.

After just a few hours of sleep, we awoke on the big day! The pouring rain outside wouldn't dampen our happiness and excitement for our friend. The hair stylist and make-up artist arrived a little after 7am to make us look picture-perfect. Myself and another bridesmaid got prepped first, and then we offered to get the shoes even though we still had clips in our hair and make-up undone.

The store was in an outdoor mall. The wind and rain whipped and swirled around us, flipping my brand-new umbrella inside out and mussing our hair. Water soaked through our shoes and pants. After a few wrong turns, we found the store and were presented with the golden Converse.

Our faces fell.

These shoes would not do. They were not the "classic" Converse our bride desired. And to be honest, I thought they were ugly. After confirming with the bride, we began a new quest in the store. Surely we could find something suitable in these many racks of Converse shoes.

In the clearance aisle, in the corner of the store, I found them. A classic Converse shoe with shimmering silver stripes in size 7. They looked like wedding shoes. We snapped a picture and texted it to the bride (which I don't have, but these are the shoes - much prettier in person!).

And she said yes! She was ecstatic!

Our quest complete, we returned to our hotel room and ventured through the hairspray fog (seriously, we had to leave the air conditioning on to filter the air!) and handed the shoes to the bride. They fit perfectly. The stylist fixed our hair and our Cinderella was the bell of the ball in her sparkly Converse shoes.

Mission accomplished.

Have you had any mundane adventures lately?

Monday, March 26, 2012

Big adventure in small places

Most people learn about the hero's journey in high school. It's the standard hero-driven story arc, usually involving a quest, a mentor, a fall/loss, a rise to power, and success, in some semblance of order.

But some days, just getting bananas from the store can seem like a quest--complete with villainous cashier, an evil witch in the produce section, and a perilous parking lot journey. It's how we handle these mundane adventures that defines and prepares us for the real ones. (Or not. I may just be saying that because it sounds important). This week is all about these tiny epic stories, the usual unusual. A hero's quest in a bottle.

My mundane adventure has to be my commute. Some days, getting home from work seems to span three centuries and several monarchies. I work about forty miles from my home, giving me a commute that can be anywhere from forty minutes to-- well, my record so far is about three hours.


Let's just say it's a well-known fact in San Diego that no one can drive in the rain.

The major freeway I take most of the way home has its issues. It's relatively well-managed for traffic volume, but add water falling from the sky and the whole thing seizes up. Mostly because there's little to no drainage on the darn thing.

The last time we had a big storm, I limped my way home around mid-afternoon, pretty much convinced I was going to die. People were in that scary speed range where you're going just fast enough to do some damage if you lose control, and the road was so slick and wet and there was so much wind that my car was getting blown all over. And then I reached a dip between valleys.

Essentially, a small lake had formed on the freeway.

Now, I'll be the first to admit that I'm being a wimp here-- but here's the thing. I, too, am a San Diegan. I hardly ever have to drive in bad weather conditions, so I just plain don't know how to handle them. When I hit that giant puddle, I was all of a sudden blinded by the wall of water kicked up from my tires, and had the sensation that I was floating more than driving. It was pretty terrifying.

It didn't help that I had twenty of my new best friends surrounding me the whole time.

Now, I did make it through. But I'm scared of it happening again, despite the fact that it most assuredly will at some point. Ah well. Maybe I'll take an alternate route next time.

What do you do when the weather's bad?

Friday, March 23, 2012

There's a hole in my bucketlist, dear Liza

Making bucket lists is not a new thing for me. Calling them bucket lists, however, is new and I refused to do so for a while, thinking it was coined by that awful Morgan Freeman movie...but then I relented once I discovered that it was a legit term. End sidebar.

So! I've been making bucket lists since I was a wee lass. Some mildly embarrassing highlights!

From a list made at 12 years old:

-- Be on David Letterman before age 16 (I had a stupid human trick that was GOLD)
-- Safari with the Kratts (I'd still go. No regrets)
-- Become a world famous veterinarian (I'm not sure how one would get world famous, but...)

From a list made at 16:

-- Speak 100 languages (I read an article about a guy that did this. Seemed reasonable.)
-- Become a world famous veterinarian (Still going strong with this one)
-- Visit Skywalker Ranch (I blame the cute guy at the comic book store for planting this idea)

And a list made at 21:

-- Spend a summer surfing in Australia (Ah, to be young enough to think I'd have summers off forever)
-- Go to law school (ha ha WHUT. Go back to being a vet!)
-- Open an ice cream shake stand (ha ha ha SERIOUSLY WHAT WAS WRONG WITH ME)

I still have bucket list ideas floating around now, things like "publish a book" and "have another kid" but somethings just happen in their own due time. And hopefully I don't look back on what I'd like to do now and laugh too hard about it. I've become a bigger fan of "have done" lists rather than "to do"..that way no one can find a half-crossed off list in my wallet when I go on to that spirit in the sky. I'm all about COMPLETION, baby.

(Kratts: call me.)


Thursday, March 22, 2012

Not That I'm Ambitious . . .

Things To Do While I Am Still Alive

Publish a book (duh)

See all the Castles in Britain

Have dinner at the Eagle and the Child

Go wine tasting in Itally and France

Journey across India

See Russia

Live in other countries

Try to figure skate

Try to shoot a bow and arrow

Sail across the Pacific

Open a combination bookstore and tea shop that serves authentic afternoon and "meat" tea

Build a castle

Read every book ever written

Tell everyone how amazing they are

Force them to smile


Watch a thousand sunsets

Watch a thousand sunrises

Prepare a ten course meal

Repair our country's education system

Rule the world

Monday, March 19, 2012

If I should kick the bucket before I ...

Everyone has something they want to do before, uh, you know-- the great blue yonder.

Some even have entire lists of things! A veritable bucket list of sorts!

Mine? (This is going to be one of my shortest posts ever).

It's simply:

1.) Do everything.

What's on your bucket list?

Friday, March 16, 2012

How to Train Your Dragonfruit

Yes, Virginia, there is something called a dragonfruit.

The dark time in my life when I did not know about the stunning deliciousness that is dragonfruit (I call this time BD) surely outweighs the glorious time that I HAVE known about it (the years know as AD) but I don't lament the days I went without. I just try to make up for it by eating as much as I possibly can now.

Now, tastiness of the fruit aside, I have to admit that the dragonfruit looks a little...uh...intimidating.

Looks almost like a cholla catcus after a really long night of partying. Ooh! Or the love child of a prickly pear and Cousin It. Or! or! or! Like an aloe vera plant that got dreads done on Spring Break. I am on simile FIRE!

But just like L.T. notes about the pineapple, it seems to be a long jump from "Hey, weird plant" to "What's that spiky red thing on the ends? And can I eat it?" I suppose our fruit hunting ancestors were a bit more hard up for tasty treats than we were.

Then again, who doesn't want to see what's inside nature's dreadlock bead?

(I kind of imagine this is what Babelfish might look like.)

Well, slice that sucker up and you'll be treated to the most delicious, seederific fruity flesh that you can possibly get your taste buds around:

It's like a party in my mouth and a bunch of seeds are invited! (Don't worry, the seeds are edible. No need to scoop around them.) It's divine, people. It's healthy and delicious and if I would have shied away from the weird little fruit stand I came across a few years ago just because it smelled like durian, I would have missed eating and falling in love with what is now my favorite (albeit a little hard to find) fruit EVER.

People are fruits. We're weird and intimidating and sometimes spiky and maybe a little stinky and hard to understand, but we're really good inside. Heck, sometimes we're even delicious! Thank goodness some people take the time to (metaphorically, of course) slice us up before passing us over. And hopefully we're the type of people to do that, too. In the meantime:

Thursday, March 15, 2012

Why Cucumbers and Avacados Are Also Fruit

No, I do not have the scientific reasons for why these delightful greeneries are classified as fruit. My reasons are much less intellectual and much more definite.

I want to give you some recipes for them.

So look it up. Wikipedia will tell you they are fruit too.

So I can do this without breaking the rules.

Drat. I hate following the rules.

Now for the recipes . . .

Cucumber and Mint Sandwiches
(just in case Algernon ate them all before Aunt Augustest arrived)


1) Eight slices of white bread (normally I prefer dark breads with more texture but in this case you don't want the bread to overpower the cucumber)

2) One Cucumber, peeled and sliced

3) Fresh mint leaves, washed and removed from stems

4) Eight ounces cream cheese at room temperature (make sure it's room temperature. Trying to spread refrigerated cheese over soft bread is not fun.)

Spread cream cheese over four slices of bread. Layer mint and cucumbers on top. Cover with remaining bread slices. Cut off crust. Slice sandwiches into triangular quarters and enjoy. When Aunt Augustus finally arrives tell her there weren't any cucumbers; not even for ready money.

Blueberry, Avocado, Cilantro Smoothies

This is one of my sister's recipes. It is fantastic.


1) Fresh cilantro, washed

2) One cup blueberries, washed (hey, those are even traditional fruits. I am such a good little rule follower.)

3) Two avocados, peeled and pitted

4) Three quarter cup Greek yogurt (honey, plain, or vanilla flavored)

5) Half a cup ice

Blend and enjoy.

OK, now I'm hungry. Which way is the kitchen please?

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

My favorite fruit name to say

As writers, we have a tendency to pick favorite words. Whether it's those we write or those we say, there are certain words that give a particular joy with the way they roll off the tongue. I adore saying the names of the Jewish High Holy Days for example -- Rosh Hashanah continues to entertain every time I say it -- and when I discovered this fruit, well you can pronounce it for yourself.

I've never eaten this fruit. Never even seen one, to be entirely frank. But I did hear of it some years ago, and am always entertained by the way it rolls off my tongue.

It's a bit odd, but my favorite fruit name to say is ... Kumquat.

The kumquat tree. Image from Wikipedia.
The English name of the fruit comes from the Cantonese word "gam gwat." Trust us pesky English speakers to mess up a pronunciation, amirite?

It's a citrus fruit that's cousin to the orange, so I imagine it'd taste something like that. The plant's native to south Asia, and first appears in Chinese literature around the 12th Century CE. The kumquat tree, a small evergreen-type tree, can also be found in Japan, Taiwan, Thailand, Korea, Vietnam, Pakistan, and Nepal. It first came to Europe in 1846 and was shortly thereafter introduced to North America.

According to Wikipedia, folks in the Southern U.S. and California are more likely to have consumed the kumquat. I don't recall having seen any in Massachusetts or New York grocery stores, but then I've never really bothered to look all that much. 

Still, since we're talking about fruit I figured I'd share this.

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

In the End, We're All Fruit

One of my best friends is getting married this weekend. I'm the matron of honor (why does that have to sound so...matronly?), which means I will be giving a speech. Naturally, I'm totally stressed out. I've never given a wedding speech before and I want it to be special and meaningful.

One of my favorite movie wedding speeches is from "My Big Fat Greek Wedding" and ties perfectly with this week's theme: FRUIT. Take a look:

I love the message in this speech. We're a different fruits living in the same fruit bowl. We all have our own unique favors and textures, contributing something different to the whole salad. If I were a fruit, I'd be a strawberry. I don't have thick skin. I try to be sweet, but sometimes you catch me when I'm tart and you just have to give me some more time. I love the summer. And I go well with chocolate (really, what fruit doesn't?).

Just a few more days for this fruit to figure out her matron of honor speech. I doubt it'll be as clever as Gus Portokalis, but I hope it will be just like a strawberry: short and sweet.

Monday, March 12, 2012

Peach, Pear, Apple, Banana . . . Pineapple???

This week at the Archives is all about FRUIT!

What about fruit, you may be asking?

The answer is, I don't know!

Well, okay, *I* know what *I'll* be writing about. But my fellow Alliteratus? Well, it's up to them what they'll be writing about, about fruit. Maybe they'll tell you about a time they couldn't find fruit. Or a time fruit saved their life. Or their favorite fruit. Or what fruit means to them. Or what the scientific definition of a fruit is, and whether tomatoes and cucumbers should REALLY count.

Really, the possibilities are endless.

But what I want to talk to you about, about fruit, (wow that's even more awkward the second time), is the pineapple.

Bear with me, my friends.

It's just... okay. Look. Some things, I totally understand. I mean, just look at apples and peaches. They are shiny/ fuzzy, appealing/ attractive/ smell good. Or berries-- berries are smushy and stain your fingers all sorts of exciting colors. I can totally see early man walking up to a blackberry bush and testing that shizz out.

But a pineapple???

First of all, have you ever seen a pineapple plant? No? Well, conveniently, I happen to carry a picture of one around with me at all times here on the internet:

Yeah. There you go. 

What sort of maniac walked up to this spiky plant, took a look at the VERY spiky thing sitting on top, and said, "Hey, that looks tasty!"

(Strange fact... if you plant a whole pineapple [or even just cut off the top and plant it], it will grow! The top of the pineapple= the strange spiky plant seen here. It's pineapples all the way down).

Okay, so I'm glad they did it. If I had to pick a favorite fruit, pineapple's definitely up there. But still. It's weird. 

Not to mention the effort you have to go through just to eat the darn things.

Don't even get me started on coconuts.

What's your favorite fruit?

Sunday, March 11, 2012

Oh, I'm a Rambler...

::pant pant pant:: I KNOW I'm late and I should have scheduled this post before I left a week ago, but ::pant pant pant:: it's not Monday yet! Did I make it?

And honestly? My REASON for being late ties in quite naturally to this week's theme. What can't I live without? Well, among all the other great things mentioned by my fellow Alliteratis...


I spent the week in Hawaii to attend a friend's wedding. And beautiful ceremony aside, the best part of the week was driving around and sighing every few minutes: "I could really live here. I could. I would be okay with that."

I love seeing how other people live. I love getting away from the big resorts and wending into small towns and meeting locals. I spent time relaxing, sure, but I spent the other half of my vacation puzzling out the logistics of how to MOVE there and what I would do once I did. It's like that movie, Sliding Doors: I feel like my life splits every time I travel somewhere and a small part of my brain never comes back to real life. Bad for someone who needs every bit of her brain at all times, but GREAT for a writer.

So I'm back to real life...a little late, but still here. And here's to finding that perfect opening line for the new 1940's epic surfer girl biopic that's been rattling around in my notebook since Thursday.

Don't tell me my bidness, kitty. My ideas are GREAT.

Thursday, March 8, 2012

What I Can't Live Without: People

This is kind of a strange "something" for me to choose since I am typically a very pronounced recluse (read as crabby person who likes to shut herself in her room and lock the door) but the more I think about it the more I realize it is true.

I need people to survive.

I don't just mean the obvious reasons either (I can't grow and hunt all my own food or build my own shelter etc.). Humans are a very social animal. We need other people for basic survival, yes, but we also need them for support, inspiration, and keeping life interesting.

I think that may be one of the many reason I am drawn to fiction. I love how people make life interesting. Books take you inside the mind of two people; the character(s) and the author.

Here are some of the important people in my life.

For support

(Christmas 2011)

For inspiration

(Author, Ursula LeGuin)

(Poet, John Keats)

(Robin Hood!)

For keeping life interesting

(See all of the above. Particularly the first one. They keep things in my life pretty crazy in a frusteratingly wonderful kind of way.)

So who are the important people in your life? How do they make life interesting?

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Something I Can't Live Without

To be honest, the first thing I thought of when presented with this week's theme "Something I can't live without" was cheese.

Yes, cheese. The wonder food.

It's so scrummy (scrumptious and yummy). Second thing I thought of was the Hubs (I'm so ashamed I didn't think of him first).

But after some more thought (and a slice of cheese), the one thing I can't live without is water and sunlight (OK, two things). When I say water and sunlight, it's not for the obvious reasons, like a plant needs it to do it's thing with the chlorophyll or something. I need water and sunlight for my sanity.

I've lived in San Diego my whole life. The sea and the sun are part of me. Just the idea of living in the middle of dry land makes me claustrophobic. Trapped. Suffocated.

The sun has an amazing power over my mood. What's funny is that I love a gray, rainy day too (probably because of the water!) but I can only take a few days of it before I have to feel the sun's warmth. My happiest day is on some tropical beach with the Hubs, snorkeling in the warm water and then lounging in the sun. Preferably with a plate of cheese and fruit.

Two very basic things, but two things I must have to survive. What can't you live without?

Monday, March 5, 2012

Give me ______, or give me death!

We all have stuff we can't survive without. For some, it's coffee. For others, oxygen.

This week's theme asks us what we need to live. Perhaps we'll give you some tongue-in-cheek responses, perhaps serious ones. But either way, we want to know what, exactly, makes us tick.

For me, it's not something I can easily narrow down . In fact, mine's more of a laundry list than a thing. But here goes; the things I cannot survive without:

Animals: Quite literally, if there were no animals on this planet, I would be a very, very depressed person. 99% of my life revolves around animals in some form and the other 1% is only occupied by subconscious brain activity like breathing, and digestion.

My husband: The rock to my crazy scissors. He keeps me on an even keel and brings me back down to earth when my britches fill with air and threaten to carry me away, but he also always reaches out a hand when I need someone to hold onto.

Ibuprofen: Oh, man. If there is a wonder drug, it is ibuprofen. It cures most of my ills, to the point where I sometimes wonder if I have a placebo effect reaction to it. Of course, that's not counting the damage it's doing to my stomach, but I figure by the time that's actually an issue modern medicine will have a solution. I, uh, can quit any time.

Down time: I can't stress this one enough. I call them my "hermit days" and yes, I need a WHOLE DAY. I am not the "an hour here, an hour there" type of relaxation person. No, it's got to be a whole day of laziness or I am not counting it as restful. Unfortunately, I rarely have entire days to do nothing, so I am pretty much always "exhausted."

Quotation marks: What would I "do" without them? How would I "emphasize" "words" on the page if I couldn't "use quotes" around them?

My friends: You know who you are. I love you guys.

A sense of accomplishment: I am so goal driven it's not funny. No, seriously. Quit laughing. That's not nice.

Sugar: Yeah. I think this one explains itself. It might also explain why I get so many headaches that I have to take ibuprofen for. Ah well. I regret nothing.

Writing: I, uh, have a confession to make. In the first draft of this post, I FORGOT TO PUT THIS ONE IN THERE. I know, lame, right? Maybe because I was writing when I wrote it so I didn't think about it. (Yeah, that made total sense). Anyway, I really can't live without writing. Guess what I typically spend most of my hermit days doing??

So those are my things! What are yours??