Things That Make Me Happy…

I guess since a few lot of these things are material things it deserves mention that there is a difference between “true happiness” and “pleasure.” I “get” that, I do. I just refuse to discount the [beyond momentary] value of “pleasure” items. If I were, say, going into debt with an apartment that was hoarded to fill a hole in my soul? Then I have a problem. That’s not the case. Yes, Zoyas and even China Glazes can add up, but I only buy Zoya a few times per year and only when it’s on sale and China Glazes only when I have a coupon for Sally’s. I never put any of it on a credit card and nothing else in my life ever suffers because of it. I’m not filling a void in my soul either; I’m just giving myself some little things to look forward to. That disclaimer out of the way…

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Zoya ran a sale that was better than BOGO; it included free shipping AND full size of their polish remover!
Dream, Yuna, India, Monica, Veronica, & Katherine.

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These are really random, but I had no neons in my collection and a coupon that was about to end so…
Pool Party, Celtic Sun, & Tropical Pop.

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Golden Rust, Chili Flakes, Seared Bronze & First Mate…they all just called to me. I can stare at ‘First Mate’ in the bottle for hours, I swear.

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These REALLY get me excited! When I was around 13 years old and just discovering nails and polish, the stores had entire racks dedicated to decals. The last few years…not so much. I don’t like the wraps; I can’t get them to work. Granted, I have some and I’ve been thinking about trying again after someone on YouTube said that it helps greatly if you heat them a bit with a hair dryer first, but my nails are so small that just trimming them down is a huge PITA. So when these from Kiss and Fingrs started showing up in the stores… SPLOOSH!

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This also gets me super excited! It’s “There’s Snow One Like You.” I looked it up on Amazon after seeing a few swatches of this year’s collection’s “Chillin’ with my Snow-mies.” polish, which in basically a really, really, REALLY sparse white, matte confetti polish. I wanted snow, but this coming one wasn’t catching on fire for me. I think I ordered it on Tuesday and it showed up today! Which also makes me really happy! (I hate waiting for things to get here.)

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Maybelline’s Matte lipsticks in Daringly Nude and Lust for Blush also make me smile! I don’t really dig the shiny lip look on me and it’s sort of hard to get away from without going to the MAC counter and…have I mentioned that I won’t mortgage my soul for my beauty products?? I have four from the collection, but these two are my favorites.

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L’oreal’s Silkissime eyeliner pencils…just…OMG! In the last year I’ve spent…a good amount on premium brands of eyeliner. For some reason, the drugstore brands just haven’t been able to keep up and would be runny and smeary within a few hours. Not cute. I picked these up last night (on sale and with coupons and I’m pretty sure Meijer ended up paying me to take them LOL) because of Tati’s videos. I still didn’t expect much, but I took them home and drew hearts on the back of my hand with them. They went on super smooth and beautiful. I swooned, but with most products that apply smoothly, they also wipe off easily so I wasn’t expecting much. A bit later, hearts still on the back of my hand, I went to do dishes… I don’t use gloves.

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Wow. A few hours later I showered. I don’t usually scrub the back of my hands unless I’ve swatched things and want to get them off. This was now a science experience. LOL Showering didn’t phase them. Then I went to bed a few hours later. I woke up and the metalics had pretty much gone away. The black? Still looked as good as it does here! It took another few hours, several hand washings, and a round of dishes before it’s now faded a bit — but you can still see that it’s a heart!! Finally a liner under $10 that stays put! This makes me soooo happy!

FredHat - Copy

Fred in cowboy hats also makes my heart smile.

Movie grass! I didn’t get to take a picture of it, but I noticed tonight, as the leaves have slowly started to drop, that the grass here is the fine, fluffy-looking grass that we don’t have in Florida and which I always thought was fake when I saw it in movies. The apartment complex’s landscapers were out yesterday; the grass is mowed, the leaves fell over night and…it’s…freakin’ beautiful! At least once a week, I full-stop and think, “I can’t believe I live here! SQUEEEE!!”

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After yesterday’s blog post, my sister sent me this and that makes my heart smile, too! :-) (She got me ducks!)

I won’t post 50 million cat pictures here; that’s what Instagram is for! :-P But the cats have been super snuggly because of the cooler weather and it’s freakin’ adorable! I kid you not; right now, Tiger is half-curled into a ball in front of the TV, watching the guy from Tosh 2.0 do a stand-up routine. He looks properly offended. :-)

I stalked the tracking sites for my order from Loaded Lacquer will be here Monday and my tea-spree will be here on Tuesday!

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Tea spree!

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Clearance washi tape also makes me happy! I have lots of scrap booking and paper crafting ideas in mind for these beauties!

There’s been a lot of cooking going on here lately and that will continue. Baking is about to increase as the weather cools. I’m very happy and excited about both of those things goin’ on in mah life.

I’ve also gotten really excited about the Halloween makeup and bought a small truck load of it to use for Princess’ costume. She’s going as Anna from the Frozen movie. I think these coming weekends we may just practice makeup and then she can run around with it on and we’ll both be happy.

I’m contemplating starting up some yoga again and jumping into the UK Harry Potter’s that my sister popped onto my Kindle. I really want to do both and I’m excited for both, but…haven’t…quite…stepped off that ledge yet. I’m getting there though and it makes me happy!

What has made you happy (or given you pleasure) this week?

That Moment When You Remember Why…

…you even bothered with Xanga archives.

Friday April 26, 2013

A decade ago, I sat next to my friend on his couch. He was going through a rough break-up with a girl that he considered to be “The One.” However, she had made it clear that she didn’t feel the same and there was abso.freaking.lutely. no. chance of them reconciling. He had spent a weekend sitting on the couch in his pajama pants and still wasn’t feeling any better. “I just don’t know what to do without her,” he sighed and slumped further into the corner of his couch. “What about the 5k you wanted to run? What about going back for your Master’s? What about getting in extra overtime at work to save for the house that you wanted to buy? You don’t need her for any of that,” I pointed out. “We’re all just animals. Big, slobbery animals that can either chew their tails and become neurotic when nobody else is home to toss a tennis ball around for us or…learn to throw the damned ball for ourselves!”

In other words, set your own goals, chase after them, and everything else will fall into place. My off-the-cuff speech slowly spurred my friend into action. I moved away and life took us in slightly different directions, but a few years ago I was going through a rough patch of my own and unsure of what to do. I received a random message on FaceBook from my friend. We hadn’t spoken in a couple of years by that point. He asked how I was doing. My fingers hung in the air over the keyboard for a second. I was tempted to simply say that I was “great” and move on, but instead I typed something to the effect of, “Meh, working through some stuff right now. Not sure what to do next.” and hit enter. He responded with a YouTube link; a video of a golden retriever with a tennis ball, standing in front of a garage door. The dog paced for a moment, then whipped his head to the side and released the ball, sending it flying at the garage door, which in turn sent it flying across the front yard and rolling toward the sidewalk. The dog ran to capture it and then took it back to the garage door, which had more than a few dents in it, and “threw” it again and again for himself. I had to laugh and cry a little at the same time…and then got up off my butt and threw my own tennis ball.

Roughly a year ago, I was browsing blogs over on Blogger (a move that I’ve half-assedly made a handful of times now, but maybe that’s another blog all it’s own…) and came across a post that was very similar to my tennis ball speech. I tried to find it today and could not, but the gist of it was this: some people are natural born duck hunters. They lead everyone out and shoot the ducks; they give the retrievers something to do. Some people are retrievers; they go out and pick up the ducks…and they need the hunter to keep them going. The conclusion of the blog was that it was okay to be a retriever; the world needs them as well as it needs leaders.

I’m a hunter. Both by nature, in that I can’t just sit and wait for someone to drop a duck out of the sky for me, and that the people around me tend to be retrievers, they need me to drop ducks out of the sky for them so that they don’t chew their tails to bloody little nubs. If I put my clothes in the hamper, so will [Hubby]; without me having to say a word. If I’m out studying or reading in the living room, the kids are more likely to find a spot of their own and study or read as well. If I’m on the ball about being physically active and eating better, [former room mate] and [Hubby] both follow. The list could go on and one, but if I don’t do these things, then they won’t do them either; no matter how badly [Hubby] wants to look better naked or [FRM] wants to feel better or the kids want to do better in school; if I fall off track, the whole train derails.

On one hand, EUREKA! I know how to get everyone in the house to do things with this one simple realization! On the other, I think I need another cup of coffee just thinking about it. I wouldn’t say I’m “bitter” about it, but…every now and again, I’d kind of like for someone to shoot down a duck for me. I mulled this over in my head for a day and came to another realization; [Hubby] won’t shoot ducks for me. [FRM] won’t shoot ducks for me. The kids won’t shoot ducks for me. However, Ed will shoot the occasional duck for me. Ed is my friend that I mentioned in [another blog that is somewhere in my archives but no longer exists through the link provided] whom also recently started nudging me to look into (and join) the honors college at Valencia. (i.e. He dropped a big, fat duck, stuffed with scholarship money, out of the sky for me and told me to go get it.) Ed is not the only friend that I have that will drop a duck for me either; just the most obvious example at the moment. I just have to look beyond my front door for hunters. I can live with that and it makes shooting ducks for others not seem as tiresome.

For “us”, as people, I think it’s important to know how to throw our own tennis balls, occasionally. Whether we like to or not, we’ll eventually hit a spot where we need to. Also, the world needs both hunters and retrievers, for sure, but it’s important to know how to do both for other people. Without retrievers, what’s the point in hunting? But every now and again, the hunter’s trigger finger needs a rest, too.

Can you throw your own tennis ball? Are you a hunter or a retriever?”

The problem with this for me today, more than a year later, is that I really need someone to shoot a duck for me…and Ed isn’t around. Instead I’m being asked to shoot down more ducks for other people and…my shoulder is something beyond bruised after the last year. I’m disappointed and left feeling lost and alone.

Happy Post Time!

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I did Princess’ hair the other morning and she was thrilled.

I had a ton of coupons that were about to expire, so Sunday we hit up Ulta, Sally’s and Kohl’s. I got nail polishes and sweaters. That makes my heart incredibly happy.

My sister showed me the tea kettle she’s lusting after and that sparked me to restock my tea collection. It’s one of the those “little things” that makes me happy but which I forget about sometimes when life gets too busy.

I’m excited for fall/Halloween and winter/Christmas. I haven’t been in years, not really anyway. I think the change of scenery – to a place that actually has four seasons – was just what I needed in a lot of respects.

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There have been a lot of candles burning lately and that makes me happy, too. The A/C hasn’t been on in more than a week! I love it! It even smells like fall outside, too! This may just be the weekend that Princess, Muttly and I go to the maple forest! I need to find a good pumpkin patch up here in the coming weeks, too.

In a few weeks it’ll be time to seriously start winter clothes shopping. Princess’ second mother kicked off her wardrobe shopping the other night! I think people with ‘normal’ families take for granted when the grandparents help out with things. Being that we don’t have that, it can be tough at times. I’m eternally grateful for the family that I have that isn’t “blood” family. They don’t “have” to be there, but they are because they’re amazing people and we’ve chosen each other. I think that’s worth more than “blood” family that is only there because they feel some sort of obligation. <3

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Hubby has been busy with work and stuff, but he seems overall content. I have some ideas for date events soon too that I think he’ll enjoy. :-)

So, yeah…I’m excited and grateful and looking forward to a lot. :-) Of course everything isn’t totally sunshine and roses; we’ve been through too much in the last year for that, but it’s been a good past week!

 

Healing in Unexpected Places…

I signed in tonight only really planning to check the blogs I follow, read a bit and move on. I didn’t expect to suddenly feel better about something that has bothered me for the last year and a half.

There have been at least three instances where someone (different people each time; though, sorry, I’m just not certain that the details are all that worth dredging up) that Hubby knows/knew did something that was wrong in terms of their behavior towards me. To me, he would say that they were wrong and he would step back from them, but he wouldn’t say anything to them. Meanwhile, eff with him and I may only deal in tongue lashing, but you’ll definitely get one from me on his behalf! He’s important to me and you don’t get to just treat him like shit and walk away! So, I never understood why he wouldn’t take any sort of stand for me. Did he not care? Did he secretly feel that they were in the right? He insisted neither were true, but I couldn’t help still feeling, well, butt-hurt. It’s one of only a couple of things that I’ve struggled with getting past in our relationship stumbling blocks.

So, I’m sitting here tonight and one of the bloggers that I adore wrote about her crappy/abusive father. Another blogger who I adore (though he doesn’t seem to write much anymore on his own page *pouting*), commented on it that he had a similar upbringing and avoids confrontation at pretty much all costs. The OP chimed in that she’s much the same way about confrontation. Hubby had a shitty step-father for much of his childhood…and doesn’t like confrontation. Shitty though it may be, it makes me feel a little bit better — it’s not me and not because he doesn’t feel that I’m important enough. Maybe it’s silly; I don’t deny that, but it makes me feel a little better overall. I’ll take it!

I bought sweaters and tea today, which makes me feel better, too. I’m trying to work (again) on doing things just for “me.” I think I’m doing okay so far and I have felt a bit better the last few days. *knocks on wooden desktop* I’m about to get off here and take a stab at another pinterest crafting project and watch some TV while candles burn. I’m really looking forward to curling up with my tea in a couple of weeks and reading the UK Harry Potty books that my sister poof’ed to me the other day! *whispers* She’s a wizard!  ;-)

15 Things College Students Are Just Not In the Mood For Today

fadingsunlight:

Many of these make me remember why I love online classes so! (At one time or another, I’ve experienced all of these. A couple outside of college.)

Originally posted on Serendipity and Creativity:

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College is freaking great, but sometimes we are just not in the mood.

1. Waiting for the professor to get to class.

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I’m sorry, last time I checked I have to be here on time, I’m about to dock your participation points.

2. Getting literally every due date on the syllabus moved around.

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WHY EVEN GIVE US ONE?

3. Getting an assignment that wasn’t on the syllabus at all.

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That’s cool. I don’t have a life or anything.

4. Getting half run over by people on bikes on campus.

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The side walk is for walking, slow the heck down Lance Armstrong.

5. Having a professor hold you late in class.

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Yeah, I mean I was really hoping I’d have to sprint across campus to my next class. I definitely needed the exercise.

6. Loud people at the library having a raging study session with their friends.

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Why. Just why.

7…

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Alive…Sort of…

I’ve taken a few much needed days off from the internet in general. FaceBook, in particular, can be very time consuming for me. The past few days I’ve mostly just been using the messenger (I know…that evil app that’s going to…steal our children or some such.) on my phone to chat with my sister and…it’s been nice not to be a slave to it.

I can’t hear out of my left ear. My right ear started with an on-and-off infection-like thing (it was sore, but not…”OMG! KILL ME!” sore)…then it moved to the left, went “OMG! KILL ME!” sore and now is like, clogged. It’s really just annoying at this point.

I feel like after having been “gone” for a week I should have something more exciting to announce than, “Oh, hai…I haz ear issues!”

I finished my wreath for our door. I picked up the makings of another project for autumn the other day and I have a complimentary idea kicking around in my head for it, too.

I had our wedding pictures printed and filled our frames.

Hubby’s working through this weekend, but I want to head to one of the parks soon-ish and see what pictures can be gotten.

I’ve gone full circle on wanting to simplify/pare down things as much as possible and then, last month, being annoyed with the whole process – it seems like I’ve been in a constant state of doing just that for the last two years and it never seems to get me anywhere -, back to being like, “OMG! The clutter! Let’s get rid of anything we don’t NEED!!”

The one part of autumn that I’m not totally excited for is the purchasing of new clothes. I think…it’s time. It’s time to just suck it up and buy clothes for the body shape that I have. To realize that I may or may not see my old body again, but that that’s okay, too. I’ve realized that the people who are most likely to make the snarky, “You’ve gained weight!” comments or to talk about such behind your back are usually people bigger than you and that irony is not lost on me. I think hubby and I are both just at the point where we want to be healthier, period, and we’ll work towards that instead. Living somewhere that isn’t so hot eleven months out of the year that you feel like you have to walk around naked just to not melt seems to help with all of that.

And…I…think that’s it. Hope everyone else had a great holiday weekend and is having a good one this weekend, too! :-)

 

 

Can We All Just Agree on this One Thing??

I was stumbling around the internet this morning, killing time while waiting for my apartment complex’s office to open (No, really – could you guys please give us more details other than, “Secure all pets for the next two days.” Seriously? Like…in the master suite or do they need access to that, too? Is this the rodeo in which the air filters are changed out or would moving the dining table to the middle of the room make life harder for you guys and us?? *sigh*) and I came up on this.

The jist: A friend of mine constantly posts status updates humble bragging about some good deed he did — buying a stranger a cup of coffee at Starbucks, covering a soldier’s tab at a pancake house.  It’s obnoxious because it’s abundantly clear that he’s looking for backpatting and compliments on how charitable and wonderful he is, which kind of takes away from the good deed itself, no? Like, do something nice for someone, that’s awesome, but if you’re doing it just to be told what a good person you are, maybe you’re not so good. Anyway, this is starting to grate on my nerves. Is there a tasteful way of saying as much to my friend?

The fact that this social blunder needs to be addressed is head desk’y enough. That I’ve, personally, seen it waaaaay more times than I’d care to acknowledge – usually with far too much detail for me to believe it as something that truly happened, while my circle of “friends” is kept very limited, worries me even more so. Can’t we all just agree that if you buy a stranger a cup of coffee, over-tip an over-worked and under-appreciated waitress, or even just thrust your FUPA in the face of some stranger that doesn’t appreciate a (possibly) disabled child singing off key on the bus, that you lift up your own arm, bend your elbow at a 90* angle, give your shoulder a little tappy-tap-tap in the privacy of your own bedroom and leave it at that?

A former room mate and I once had a conversation where he talked about a handful of people that were in his rather large circle of friends that liked to find ways to brag about how “smart” they were; how they loved “the classics,” all of the cultured things they’d seen and done, etc., etc., etc.. J referred to it as “intellectual masturbation.” There was no reason for it other than that it made them feel good and it really wasn’t something that the people around them cared to see/hear…much like, well, masturbation. Really, it is. I’m glad it makes you feel good and that you enjoy doing it…but not everything should be done publicly and told to the world.

Schedule & More Miscellaneous.

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I finally sat down and put together my schedule for this fall. A lot of it is tentative because I’m still without syllabuses for half of my classes. (Classes start tomorrow. …these same teachers will, no doubt, not accept late work. Ha.) I tried my best to allot time for both special paper compositions and overflow from the other classes. Sundays are my free days. “Project time” encompasses all of the special projects that I want to do but don’t make the time for other wise; I’m about to head to the store to look for the things I need to make that owl wreath I’ve been pining for.

I tried to provide myself with generous breaks, but also keep pretty busy. Honestly, my hope is to spend more and more time away from FaceBook. I love it for chatting with my sister, but otherwise…it has started to detract from rather than “add to” my life. Judging by the stream of posts that end up in my feed complaining about other people’s posts? (Which, ironically, is part of why it’s detracting from my experience.) I’m going to venture that I’m not alone there. But it perplexes me as to why more people don’t take a few steps back if it’s that bad. 

I almost have everything that I wanted to get done before school starts up again for me done. Yay! I’m going to stitch up a few things tonight and then I should be good to good tomorrow morning! I was apprehensive about taking sleeping pills again the last few nights…and, truth, I did not want to get up this morning, but, overall, I feel a ton better the past couple of days. I’ve decided to draw a hard line in the sand; if it’s 11pm and I’m still not feeling tired, it’s time to take a pill. I’ve lived with intermittent insomnia for the last twenty years and the battle has me, literally, exhausted. 

Off to the store!

Randomness

Princess is sleeping over with Little A downstairs tonight. I’m excited because this means that I get to carpet clean her room again. LOL I think, officially, makes me old. And a recluse. 

Monday is picture day and I pre-ordered some of Princess’ pictures to frame and share. Weekend after next she has a four day weekend. (Where were those when I was a kid??)

Monday also starts my first day of classes. All of my books came in and I’m still enrolled in my classes, so I’m assuming financial aid is happy for the semester. 

I’m waiting for Princess’ Halloween costume to arrive from Amazon today. And her birthday present…super early, but the lengths I’ll go to to avoid paying shipping. :-P

owlwreath I think I’ve found my first autumn project. Now I just have to put together a schedule on which to do it, as well as the other projects I want to do, and my school work.

I want to find something that I can make for Christmas gifts, too…but not something that’s just…making something for the sake of making something. Something…practical. Pajama pants? Do those count? Hmm…

I feel like there are a hundred other things I should be doing right now… Blah.

 

 

Flowers & Miscellaneous.

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My head hurts for the third day in a row, but there are flowers on the pumpkin vines!

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I’m annoyed by a few things at the moment, but I suppose they’re all pretty trivial and won’t matter in a week.

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Eight (our of 14) of my African Violets are in various stages of bloom. I don’t think I’ve ever seen them so happy.

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Princess is settling into her school routine. Her teacher adores her and we adore Mrs. M.

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I believe Hubby is signing up to work his night off this week. Which means that this might be a good weekend for Princess, Furry Mutt, and I to pack it up for a day trip to the park we’ve dubbed “the maple forest.” I’ve been meaning to take Furry Mutt out there and let him inhale all the wonderful smells. This might be our last chance for a bit; my school starts up again on Monday.

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Half of my school books came in yesterday along with some new beauty products to review. Another beauty-related goodie box is inbound for either today or tomorrow.

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I picked up a second “pleasure book” after I finished reading, “The Ocean at the End of the Lane.” I voted for “Ocean,” but I think I had temporarily forgotten that the “fantasy” genre doesn’t really catch on fire for me. I won’t be emailing the author and publisher for a refund on those hours of my life back, but I won’t be re-reading it either. *shrug*

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The current book, Alex Kava’s “Black Friday,” is markedly more entertaining for me, but it’s all personal preference.

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Is it Autumn yet? Maybe I need a pumpkin latte this weekend on my way to the maple forest… I’ve had this odd feeling lately that some thing isn’t quite ‘right.’ My gut has yet to be wrong, so such feelings really leave me feeling ‘off.’ Today it just feels like things are thisclose to being where/how/? they’re supposed to be. It’s a mixed feeling of promising and frustrating, since whatever “it” is, is just out of reach right this moment.

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Trying out a shift in my personal schedule…I just don’t feel like I get enough done at night. *shrug* We’ll see how that goes. It’s hard to find a balance between so many factors in life, including Hubby’s third shift schedule. Off to get on that…