Hey hi hello

Warning: poorly constructed sentences here

So I’ve been wanting to do another post but haven’t had much in the way of subject matter come to mind so …. nothing happened. But now I think I have a few things to say. Aren’t you pleased about that?

I love to read. All kinds of shit. My mom started me reading really young. She encouraged me to try new things. She got me started on science fiction when I was still in grade school and moved on to James Thurber in junior high. Mot of my family was pretty encouraging too but  when Grandad found me reading Catcher in the Rye he was aghast. Yes, aghast. He was very upset at the filthy filthy language. Also I may have been a grade or two too young for it. Maybe it’s a brag but out of all the school subjects, reading was what I was consistently good at and when testing began, reading comprehension was where all the high scores were.  In the sixth grade I was at a 12th grade reading level. Yeah, a brag. And I bet there are those of you that will scoff and say “oh that is nothing, when I was two I was reading at 37 year old’s level”. Good for you. I’m taking my brag. There were only a couple other kids in my class with that score so there. Nanny nanny boo boo.

ANYWAY. I love to read. Novels, short stories, essays, sci-fi, horror (sometimes), mystery, suspense, an occasional biography, some poetry. But fiction was and is my jam. And as long as the author knows how to write well, I believe I could read just about anything. And then I found fanfic. Oh boy. Oh boy oh boy oh boy. I discovered all kinds of shit. Like, good shit and some really really really bad shit. Very really bad. Using a lot of really big and/or obscure words in long sentences doesn’t make you a good writer. Neither does making each work a spiritual and moral reflection of blah blah blah. I mean that shit is tempting. I have fallen prey to that myself. In this very blog too, I am sure. It’s fun to write that shit!!! But I think for readability other things should be considered. I could maybe take a minute and consider them myself, if I want readers for this thing……so anyway, here are some things I’ve run across that would be simple changes and would improve readability and, well, everything else about the story.

Ok, one, please reconsider the use of ‘orb’ for anything spherical in shape, especially eyes. Jesus. “The candlelight was reflected in his green orbs”. Ick. No. Eyes is sufficient if you really really need to write that sentence. Two, who fucking smirks all the fucking time? I mean really? Every single time that character does something with a facial expression it’s a smirk? Every time? Really? Stop making your characters smirk! Like, once a story is fine if they are being super snarky or something, maybe. Also, carding fingers through locks of hair, locks of hair fell in his orbs, the sun made those golden locks shine. Good Christ. Just, no. It’s ok to make a simple sentence about how pretty her blond hair was, or that is was soft or some shit. No need to be super flowery all the damn time. Save that stuff and dole it out piecemeal. One of my fave fanfics has a paragraph that makes me cry every time I read it. It’s kind of long and it’s just describing a coat being pulled from a dryer and zipped up. She writes how the kid getting zipped felt watching his brother do the zipping, how the metal was hot, what his facial expression was. She might use a couple three dollar words in there but there are only one or two. She is able to structure the sentences and use simple words to describe this mundane scene that makes my heart almost ache. And there is more than just the coat zipping, there are the feelings being described too. Jesus. She is a very good writer in my opinion, whatever that is worth. If I ever decided to try writing fiction I would pay attention to how she writes. Her dialogue is easy to follow and flows naturally. The ‘voice’ of each character is true and while the subject matter is fairly out there (fiction!!!) the people are very believable. I think it’s almost time to re-read that one.

So, there is my thing about writing. Time to apply some of that thoughtful consideration to my words as well. One of my fave writers is James Thurber. That man could pack so much shit in just a short essay. He said once, that he felt that continuous editing was what made his work successful (not a direct quote, don’t get all MLA on me here). He was constantly re-reading and re-writing, paring it down and taking out the extra padding, if you will. I guess his style was somewhat spare, like Hemingway. I think he had a similar philosophy when it came to his writing. Just take out all the unnecessary words and what’s left will still tell the story. But, I also like a wordy style of writing too and the author that can find a balance between the two is very enjoyable to me. (think Stephen King – has written some really beautiful stuff about not beautiful things and used lots of words and stuff)(and I seriously doubt he ever used orbs or locks). So I know I sound like a snob but I also do like a nice big word every once in a while. And sometimes a little fancy word combination is fun. A little bit of that extra introspective flowery shit can be a good addition sometimes! But let’s not get carried away here and cram each paragraph with that kind of stuff. I’m a reader, not a writer and I was just talking about what kind of stuff I like to read so I do hope no one takes this personally. I enjoy writing, that’s why I’ve got this damn blog, but it’s for personal enjoyment more than anything at this point. And in one previous post I said something about “the brain thinks, the fingers type” or something like that.  Also with pen and paper. Gotta have the right pen, writing surface and paper though. You get a good combo of that going on and it’s a damn enjoyable experience. Throw in some of those big words and deep thought and your journal has reached new heights of angsty greatness. So yeah, here we are!

Ok. I said I was done then kept going. Sorry about that. Now I am done.

And now I want to talk about…….lunch.

Self Analysis Nets Nothing

So this morning during my ‘quiet time’ I was doing some writing and had an “ooohhhhhhh’ moment. I’ve had those before and it’s this morning it wasn’t about anything new but I think I’m seeing it from a little different perspective, which makes me feel just a little different about it. There is no guarantee that it will actually change anything though. It was a huge disappointment to me when I finally realized and accepted that just because I know a ‘thing’ about me, this monumentally defective living mechanism that just does not work anymore, and that I know all it’s causes and conditions, does NOT mean that I’m all better and will not ever do that again. This self knowledge can make those things I do or don’t do that aren’t and haven’t been working for me more uncomfortable though. But I’m good at stuffing and avoidance. AND I HAVE KNOWN THAT FOR A LONG TIME WHY DOES IT STILL SURPRISE ME.

I mean I know that self knowledge alone will not change what isn’t working, causing emotional pain, ruining my credit score, relationships and waistline. I must take action! Nothing changes if nothing changes. The first time I heard that I had an “oooohhhhhhh” moment. Then I probably proceeded to put my blinders back on till I was really good and fucking miserable.  And that is usually the point at which I decide to take action. Maybe. Man, am I even making sense this morning? Who knows. In my last post I said something about ‘brain thinks, fingers type’ and that might be happening here. Not really stream of consciousness but close enough.

ANYWAY

I know a lot of neat things about myself. I’ve learned a lot of not neat things about myself too. I feel that I am fairly aware of my motives, what drives me or stalls me. I’ve learned to like me too. And I have taken actions and have overcome some pretty big ‘character defects’. My friends and family are every so grateful too.

But for the love of all that is good and chocolaty I still cannot

  • remember what gets harshed
  • keep clutter off the oven and kitchen counter
  • leave the house with all my belongings
  • successfully manage time
  • make a decision
  • not loose my knitting needle, crochet hook, sewing needle, phone, remote to anything, keys, glasses, scissors, nail file, important papers, various tools, time, art supplies, favorite sweaters, and once a rake
  • remember how to spell guarantee (where the fuck am I supposed to put that ‘u’ again?) (thank you spell check)
  • complete most projects that I start – or at least get them done in a timely manner
  •  get all the items on the grocery list
  • remember the password to my email
  • return packages and phone calls on time
  • keep the garage neat
  • keep all the clothes in their assigned drawers…. neatly

and plenty of other things.

HOWEVER

  • towels and sheets must be folded a certain way

BUT

I sincerely believe in that whole “nothing changes if nothing changes” thing. And that I have to participate in a lot of this whole personal growth recovery becoming the best person I can be kind of shit. And thankfully, for the most part, I do! I have people and systems in place to help me keep my mental and emotional shit together. I have things to do when I get all poopie (poopy? poopey?) pants and just want to lay on the couch so I don’t stay there. But for fucks sake I have tried and tried and tried to fix those things up there. I have read and implemented tips from magazines, books, world famous  organizational wizards, folders, bins, bags, boxes, lists, timers, alarms, schedules, colorful ribbons, reminders on my phone and computer, repetitively saying ‘don’t forget….’, dietary supplements,  making up songs, begging the good lord or what the hell ever started this universe to please fucking help me do that shit right ….. and I just can’t. I cannot change those things about me. I cannot fix them. Do you know how many times I’ve left without my keys and locked myself out of the house THIS WEEK? Do you have any idea how many times I leave and have to turn right around and go back because I forgot something AGAIN? Are you aware of the number of times I have chanted ‘g-u-a-r-a-n-t-e-e’ or ‘don’t forget your keys’ or ‘you put the scissors down on the green thing’ or ‘your knitting needle has been stuck in your pony tail’ ‘the crochet hood is in your cleavage’ ‘the screwdriver is on the kitchen table’ ‘your phone is in your hand’? What about the number of times I’ve asked Allison “now what are they harshing?” The list could and does go on.

I wish I could blame this on the copious amounts of pot I smoked in my youth but it just isn’t so. I know it didn’t help any but it is not the cause. I have been this way my entire life. For as long as I can remember I just cannot keep track of things, keep certain areas of my surroundings neat, follow simple directions, or go an extended period of time leaving the house regularly with everything I need. Repetition hasn’t helped those mysteriously spelled words (and why the hell is it so mysterious to me?!?), self discipline (or mom’s for that matter) kept my mind on one task to completion……and more. Much much more. Some day’s this drives me insane and I can’t stand it about me. And other day’s I have some acceptance that this is how I am.

One thing is sure though. Those goddamned towels and sheet will be fucking folded right.

May not be put away, but they will be folded right.

Oh what a Fangirl I am

Hey guys, heeeeeyyyyy

So there is this show that I really like and if I’m honest, sometimes I just think it’s the worst. But that somehow makes me love it even more. (How does that even work? Cause I fucking love it so bad.) And then I think about Twilight and I’m all, nope, not the worst. Not even close. (Apologies to those of you that love Twilight – I have nothing against vampires, sparkly things, young love, angst and drama, but this combo…I did not dig it)

So The Show? Supernatural. It’s epic, my love for this show, the characters, the actors, the crew, everything about it. I have seriously never ever in my life fangirled this hard over ANYTHING. Not even when I was a moody teenager. And I am so far from a moody teenager that I worry. So what about it? Well, lots actually. But where do I start? Ugh.

 

So, I guess I should talk about why I love the show etc. I’ll even throw in some shit about me while I am at it. We can maybe even consider this an open letter to The Boys. And really, this blog post is inspired by an SPN project I want to take part in. It’s maybe the rough draft of what I may or may not submit. Maybe this is that whole brainstorming thing where you throw all the shit at the wall to see what sticks. And you lucky people that chose to read this, … get to read it. So here goes!!! It might be long. I am long-winded. I love using lots of words.

Dear Dean, Sam, Cas, Jensen, Jared and Misha,

Hi, my name is Melissa and I’m a pretty regular person and I admire you greatly. I know that if you guys knew me you’d think I was pretty cool, for a regular person. I am out here in ole ok Oklahoma City.  Heh. Get it? Ok …. Oklahoma? Yeah yeah, bad joke but it was one of our illustrious leaders that thought the phrase “Oklahoma is OK!” was a great slogan; it was on the license plate for ages. Anyway….

This isn’t the reason I’m writing this. Digressing is a thing I do. I mostly edit it out of all my communications as much as I can, but I think that today I will not do that. So the fingers type what the brain thinks.

I’d like the reason that I’m writing this to have some very deep and meaningful motivations. It does actually, but you’ve more than likely heard all the deeply meaningful motivations already; one more won’t catch your eye. Also, is this supposed to be directed to Sam, Dean and Cas? But since you fictional characters, I am, hmmmm, not really sure how this is going to go. Because some of it is directed to the real people, soooooo…..(remember, the fingers type what the brain thinks). Ok, telling the real people how the characters they portray have done me good will be the way this goes. So, alrighty then, I’m addressing you Mr. Jensen Ackles, Mr. Jared Padalecki and Mr. Misha Collins about Dean, Sam and Cas. Can I make this more complicated? You bet!

Telling you how Supernatural changed my life, improved my friendships, helped me lose ten pounds, got me rich quick and helped me realize my dreams/self worth/God’s love would only partially be bullshit (my friendship with my bestie has been improved and I have awesome new friends that are a direct result of the show)(my life has changed due to SPN, in good ways and not so good ways – things have been realized, pounds have been gained, hearts have been broken…) but it also kinda heads into that deeply meaningful and impossibly angsty prose that gags most people and fanfic is rife with. (PS there is some damn good fanfic out there) Let’s avoid pitfalls where we can.

So, here we go. Oh Dean Baby, let me tell y’all about him: he’s an alpha male – man, mmmm hmmmm. But it’s not just his sex appeal –  there are real things too and frankly, they add to the sex appeal for me. Dean is loyal to his family and friends; his friends are his family. He loves his people deeply and would do anything for them. His strength of character and dedication to the good (while being bad – why do I love that so much?) He’s smart (but he plays dumb on tv!) and someone I could unashamedly eat an entire pizza with. His moral code, while often a little too black and white for my comfort, is something that he works hard to uphold (and he will break the law to do it so that’s a thing too). He is a Rebel with A Lot of Good Causes. In short he’s funny, brave, caring, strong, dependable, crazy, mean, scary, talented, well traveled, clever, confident, unsure, proud, cocky, humble, capable, serious, fun, dedicated, spontaneous, codependent, independent and a big eater. I wish he liked dogs but I get why he wouldn’t. Not gonna mention the things I’m not that fond of, I can’t change them, I must accept them.

Dean is relateable because I, too, have a low self esteem inflamed with unreachably high self-set expectations for goodness and responsibility that is damaging to myself and my relationships; an unhealthy love of food and driving too fast along with other self-destructive ideologies and behaviors.

Sam. Sammy, Sammy, Sammy.  Oh man. So the things about Dean that I am not fond of are relatively uncomplicated. With Sam I have a complex response to a complex personality. Honestly, I had a hard time with Sam the first run through the series and still do sometimes. The kicker is that I AM LIKE THAT. In the beginning, he’s angry and selfish and mean to Dean; he could be demanding and whiny too. I can’t lie, I’ve been all of those. And pretty sure I still am more than I like. But he is super smart and I have a thing for smarts. Like his brother, his intentions are always good. He doesn’t want to hurt people, he wants to help them; he has a lot of compassion and empathy. He isn’t afraid of feeeeeelings.  And he’s also strong, dedicated, loves his family and friends and is loyal (sometimes to the wrong person but who here hasn’t made that mistake?). He is very serious and takes just about everything very seriously. I have a tendency to also be so very serious. But when he laughs it’s…wonderful. He’s got this deep, kinda awkward laugh and I love it. Also, he is health conscious. Why I like that I have no idea but I do.

But then, there’s The Big One. The whole addiction thing. Oh man that was a rough one – I am not addicted to demon blood but I have spent most of my life on both sides of that good time. Watching it was hard, because so many of the thoughts and feelings of both Sam and Dean hit right at dead center of home. Jesus Christ Sammy.

Ok, now about Cas. I have a soft spot for this awkward and unsure cuy/angel/guy. Some things we share: I am confused and stumped by pop culture, movie references and slang, trench coats are cool (I don’t have one now but I had a pink London Fog trench coat in the third grade), also a serious personality, and that loyalty trait thing. A thing I have. He is sincere about shit too. But I think what gets me is his doubt in what was truth for so long. His going off the angel script, I guess you could say. His rebellion. And how all that changed him from a kind of edgy, inhuman thing to a confused and earnest it makes my  heart hurt. And then he does all that shit with very very good intentions and it all goes to hell. Purgatory. Whatever. He just wants to Fix It so bad! Ugh. How I know those feels. But of all his character development, season 13 is my fave. Fucking sass them man, sass the fuck outta all of ’em.

A thesis about Supernatural archetypes, the use of tropes, wardrobe choices, relationship dynamics and how it all applies to ‘the regular person’ has already been written, a handful of times I am sure, with plenty of ‘look at me look at me oh god PLEASE NOTICE ME’ personal commentaries inserted. (Which, let’s be honest, anything sent to you by anyone, anywhere, at any time is full of ‘look at me look at me oh god PLEASE NOTICE ME’ – this communication included) But man, all those relationship archetypes, the dynamics, the feeeellings, while pretty fucking co-dependent, are so attractive to me. I mean, who the fuck doesn’t want someone to love them so fucking much they’d sell their soul or let the world just burn for them? I am waving my hand here. Not gonna lie, I think I want that. My Dudes, I know how unhealthy that is – yet man, that is a lot of love. And what’s it feel like to love someone that fucking much? To be that close to my siblings, my friends, there is something compelling about it. I love words so much yet I cannot describe it. Those unhealthy relationship dynamics actually gave me an idea of what I had kind of been looking for in my stupid marriages. Intimacy, not sexytime intimacy y’all – that smutty stuff is fun but that these relationships don’t have it is a big deal to me. But yeah, that closeness, that emotional intimacy is so attractive and what I wanted, have wanted, do want in my relationships. It’s really hard though when chick flick moments make me sooooooo uncomfortable. Another thing Dean and I have in common. Jesus don’t make me talk about how I really feel. Ick. But ok, that vulnerability…I don’t even know. Oh shit, and the whole Dean and Bobby dynamic…aaaahhhh LOVE IT. I mean, daddy issues and then this gruff guy, and he loves them ugh. My stupid heart. Oh shit, digression.

ANYWAY

I wish I could brag about all the charitable donations I’ve made or volunteer hours I’ve logged or inspirational tweets/memes/art projects/phone calls executed in the name of Supernatural. Not to say that those haven’t happened as a direct result of Supernatural. Being a part of the #SPNFamily (do I qualify for that?) did spur me to take actions in all those regards. Just not at brag worthy levels. But there again is one more thing to go “see? see what SPN has done in my life? see what it made me do?” It made me more aware of things, and encouraged action. Made me act like a better person.

The emotions that Supernatural characters and the real life people behind them elicit in me have, quite frankly, stunned me. I was ill prepared for the reaction I had to the whole SPN Phenomenon. Look, I’ve had my fair amount of crushes, fave shows, famous loves etc throughout my life. There have been pleeeeeenty of the daydreams, the inspired choices, angsty fist-clenched tears, all the wishes and unrealized desires, all somehow connected to fiction I have loved and the folks behind it. I’ve had pleeeeeeeeenty of all that in relation to my very own real life as well (oh yay). Yet, was still, am still, surprised at the depth of my response to this show, the characters and people in and around this show, the fandom and  for all things Supernatural.  I have been totally and completely shocked, embarrassed, humbled, scared, amused and plenty other things.

Here’s a weird aside: I’ve had ENTIRE conversations with SPN gifs and ONLY SPN gifs. And serious convos too, not just fun shit, but like serious real life shit. I know I am not the only one but still, it’s cool. #Supernatural really does have a gif for everything.

Man, what else has affected me and how I live me as much as that? Only one thing. It’s a deeply meaningful and terribly personal angst ridden experience in my life. On the 17th of January I’ll celebrate 17 years of sobriety. Recovery saved the pathetic life I had and gave me the awesomely regular one I have now. And that I can pull correlatives between getting my life truly in order and Supernatural is fucking amazing. But there you have it.

Yet at the end of this composition I am still just a regular person that’s longing for a connection to something and to people that appear greater than myself. I am just another fan secretly (sometimes not so secretly) yet quite desperately hoping and wishing for some reciprocity between myself and you. You’re real people with a super fucking kick ass job and you effect change and affect hearts in deep and meaningful ways. I am just one more person that wants a bit of that glanced my way. It would be like being sprinkled with (good) fairy dust – all happily magical and shit.

I don’t have the resources (by resources I mean time and money, man, I have a life that needs my attention so choices must be made. ) I don’t have time to be on Twitter enough or make it to enough conventions (BUT I’ve made it to one and have another already planned! I think that is another blog post. Or letter. Or whatever the fuck this is supposed to be) or whatever it takes to catch your attention. Plus a lot of that is stalkery and creepy and I’m just not into that. I don’t have any self addressed stamped envelopes either. Not yet anyway. Part of me feels like I’m too old for that and besides (sticking with a theme here) I’d like an interaction more meaningful than a black and white headshot pic hastily signed on your lunch break as you ride to the airport to fly somewhere else.  I mean, I want to be seen, if that even makes any sense at all. Which it may only to me. It’s like a validation thing. You know, being noticed and liked by the coolest kids in class when you’re that back row weirdo kid. But I know that I would be sorry if I didn’t at least send it out there, stick my hand out and introduce myself, so to speak. If I want a connection I need to at least try, yeah? Yeah. Sooooo…..And the weird thing is I want to be noticed by Dean, Sam and Cas as much as Jensen, Jared and Misha, which is something else that worries me. And then I’m all “but they have so much expected of theeeeemmmm” and I feel guilty for wanting that.

OMFG ANYWAY

So, guys, there you have it. A wordy and probably poorly written something or other put out there in the fucking world wide web for any yahoo to read. So now I am embarrassed. And I think I am just fine my readership is very small. And I still haven’t decided if I want to participate in the project or not. But ah, thanks? Thank you? Thank you. How the fuck do you close something like this?

laters

byeeeeeeeeeeee

 

Unggh, or Life as I know it has changed. Again.

I am at work. Blerg. I have not updated this bad boy in a long time and I have one or two drafts hanging out waiting for me to get back to them and finish. But I have been busy! 2018 is The Year of Doing Stuff!!! I have been doing things! I have traveled! Gished! Made new friends! Traveled and then traveled some more and made more new friends! Fun times aren’t over but I fear they are going to be greatly reduced for the foreseeable future. I should use the time to get that mammogram I keep putting off.

But I have stories to tell! Pictures to post! I have shit to say!!! Here is a brief synopsis of all the fun I have had thus far.

So, travelling. I did some and this time it wasn’t a miserable time. The last few times I went anywhere it was to Oregon and I did NOT have a good time. There were dead people, weird memorial services (I think that one is maybe covered in a previous post), crazy family and active alcoholism. Plus, shitty beach weather. I need non-shitty beach weather and a good warm beach for a while. But that will have to wait.

Trip #1 – Seattle

So my gal Lisa got married to Dom and I performed the ceremony. I got one of those minister certificates just for that. So, now I am qualified to take care of all your christening and marrying needs. Whoop! That was such a great trip and it really started out as a HUGE cluster fuck. A winter storm across the mid-west delayed and cancelled flights for soooo many people and I was a casualty. I had plans to stop in Portland and spend the night with my brother in Salem then take the train from Salem to Seattle the next day, but that was nixed – I didn’t get into Portland till after midnight. I tried really really hard to make it happen and so did the lady on the phone for SW but nope. Had to change my train and plane reservations. I left the day I intended, only a few hours later. Flew to Denver, changed planes, flew to Houston, sat on the tarmac FOREVER, flew to Las Vegas, changed planes, flew to Portland. Got an Uber to the least sketchy hotel by the train station I could find and think maybe I should have looked a little harder. I was convinced that the front desk guy was a psychotic killer so I moved the table with the microwave on it in front of the door and slept with my sewing scissors. The next day was a crash course in the light rail public transportation of Portland, Oregon. I FIGURED IT OUT. But had to cart my luggage all over and barely made it to the train station on time. THE TRAIN RIDE WAS AWESOME. But motion sickness was a real thing. Mind you, at this point I am operating on about 2.5 hours of sleep and only two apples and some peanut butter. Miracle here is I was not cranky and did not cry. I was pretty good till about three that afternoon (after making it to Seattle and then following Dom around the city while he navigated the light rail system there for me) I about passed out in a bookstore. He parked me in a nice little coffee shop with some nice strong coffee and came back for me later. THEN I RODE A FERRY. I had never ridden a train or ferry and I did both in one day!! I was vibrating I was so tired and caffeinated though. (Let’s make this story shorter, shall we?) So, the Airbnb was so super fab. I was SO SUPER FAB. I’ll put some pics of the view after this. We had a nice few days, some shopping, some dicking around Seattle and Vashon Island (where we were staying). We got the cute couple wed, ate great food and saw beautiful things. I was so fine despite all the people, noise and stuff and usually too much of that stresses me the fuck out. I finally had a mini breakdown in a Starbucks somewhere in Seattle on the way to the airport the day I left. I can’t live in Seattle. But here are some pics:

Oh wait, ha ha, I lied. I don’t have the Seattle trip pics where I can get to them here. I’ll do a pic post later.

Trip #2 – New Mexico

So I love NM. It was where Ric and I got married and I have a lot of good and bad memories there but I just love that state so bad. I could probably live there. We stayed in Taos in this great Airbnb that comfortably slept all eight of us. EIGHT WOMEN. IN ONE HOUSE. NO ONE CRIED. There were a couple tense moments but nothing ever exploded into Lady Madness. It was so beautiful everywhere. Nothing really crazy stood out though, we were all pretty chill. Four of us went on an epic hike though and I damn near peed my pants it was so fun. We got sunburned, dehydrated and slightly lost but it was worth it. Trip pics below:

 

Gish

That was a whirlwind and it was awesome. I laughed so hard with my new friends and can’t wait for next year. Well, maybe I can because it’s hard. But still, I am looking forward to it. This year was different from last year. There is an app now and everyone on the team was from here. Had about the same number of people participate though. I think that it’s just a Gish thing that people will ghost your team unless you’re like a fucking pro team or something. ALSO, we had challenges up to the actual hunt and that was fun fun fun!!! Here are some pics with my new GFF’s:

Trip #3 – SPNDEN

Oh holy fucking Christ almighty on a mother fucking cracker with cheese. That was one hell of an experience and I am still riding that one. Good god. Ok, so it was fun, scary, overwhelming, weird, exhausting and mind blowing. I met the cast of Supernatural. I cried in front of Rachel Minor. No, I cried AT her. And she was so nice!!!! KIM RHODES HUGGED ME. JENSEN ACKLES SMELLED SO GOOD. HE HUGGED ME TOO. AND HELD MY HAND. TOLD ME HE LIKED MY HAIR. LAUGHED AT ME IN THE PHOTO OP. JARED PADALECKI  HUGGED ME AND SQUEEZED MY ARM. BRIANA BUCKMASTER ALSO SAID SHE LIKED MY HAIR. MISHA COLLINS MADE A POOP JOKE AT MY EXPENSE. Turns out I really am quite good at embarrassing myself in front of famous people. That’s pretty much what I did all weekend. I FINGER GUNNED MISHA COLLINS FOR FUCKS SAKE. #ilikeraisins So the pics for that will have to be posted in another entry since they, like the Seattle pics, are not where I can get to them right now. So, with old friends, old/new friends and new friends I will be going to NashCon in March. So I can make another fool of myself. There are so many things to tell. I may share some in the picture post I make later. Jesus fucking Christ I’ve never had a time like that in my life.

So, ending this scintillating blog adventure here. I shall return sooner than last time and with more pictures and maybe a good story about my awkward ass.

laters!

Avoidance: The Name of My Game

Argh. So many things….I’ve been wanting to update here for a while, tell a couple of things or stories or something but…..I have not. I am adept at not doing a lot of things I want, need or should do and I can rationalize and justify why with the best of them. Also pretty good at just not doing and not excusing or explaining why. My mom always said no one could make me do anything I didn’t (or did, it turns out) want to do. Pretty sure this has been a trait of mine for most of my life. As an infant, apparently if I didn’t like what Mom was feeding me I’d refused to swallow it, no matter how bad it tasted.  She thought it was frustrating and kind of stupid. I can’t argue with her on that. Who the hell really wants to sit with nasty tasting food in their mouth for any amount of time? Why the hell would someone do that? But, I guess  the thought of swallowing that nastiness seemed worse and spitting it out wouldn’t do any good either; the grossness would just be put right back. So I can see how, if in the helplessness of a baby, there might be some amount of control by doing neither of what was wanted. Does that even make sense? Hell yeah it does! To me!


 

So I’m avoiding….. I go this new phone. I switched from iPhone to Android not too long ago and the started phone I got was just a cheapie. I didn’t want to get a nice expensive phone just to get a month in a wail about the huge mistake I made then not be able to go back to iPhone because of poor choices. So I did alright with that new Android. Liked a lot of things about it actually but it was cheap so….. Yesterday I bit the bullet and used the money I got from selling the old iPhone and upgraded to a better phone. Cool thing about droids is you can still get a pretty cool phone that works well without paying a shit ton of money. So this new phone has that whole ‘Ok Google’ thing on it and I was trying it out and stuff and tested the play music thing and it did which is cool but what’s even cooler than that is the song it played. Highway to Hell by ACDC. Hahahahahah!!! Yeah yeah, you might not think it’s funny but if you knew me better you would. *sigh* So if I wrote here enough maybe you would know me better and understand why that’s so funny to me. See? My proclivity to procrastinate not only hurts me, but it hurts you too. And for that I am sorry.


(the line breaks indicate time breaks that are longer than a month)

So it seems that I can only get one paragraph done at a time.  That is really really poor output. Considering how wordy I can be how much my brain thiiiiiinks all the damn time you’d think I’d be able to crank out more than one measly paragraph at once and maybe more frequently than on a quarterly basis. Why don’t we look at it from a different perspective? My procrastination skills and avoidance behaviors are on point. And man, blogging takes time people, lots of time. And good blogging takes even more time. And it’s not like I got a lot of that hanging around just waiting to get used up. Kind of like my money situation. Blogging may not take much of my money but it takes my time and living takes a lot of money, and I guess I’m living a lot because I’m low on time and dollars. Also, I do not excel in time management. So perhaps this low rate of output is more multifaceted that I originally thought.

Also I feel like maybe I should post more than just one paragraph. I know that people are just sitting around waiting to read this shit going ‘just post something lady, COME ON’ and then when I do they aren’t thinking ‘gyp!!! We waited for how long? For one lousy paragraph?!?!’. Nah man, I know what’s on the other side of this blog and I’m totally ok with that. I still feel like if I’m going get on here and tippity tap this ole keyboard I should at least make the post more substantial than a granola bar. Now don’t get me wrong. I love a good granola bar and there are times they can really hit the spot, but I wouldn’t class them up there with a big ole bowl of macaroni and cheese and that’s what I’d really like to provide any readership that may somehow come across this little bloggo. Just a nice filling bowl of macaroni and cheese. Warm, satisfying, enjoyable, and a nice mix of too many carbs and some protein. So………yeah, I got nuthin’ today that compares to macaroni and cheese. Not even the kind with the powdered cheese. Which sometimes, like a granola bar, can hit the spot. But it’s not like a giant serving of mashed potatoes. God I love mashed potatoes.

Also, sometimes I seriously question my original urge to start this blog. I wonder what the real motivation was. What do I really want from doing this? What’s the real goal here? Write thought provoking yet humorous posts about my only slightly interesting life? Is this a platform to pontificate on the issues of the day, whatever that may be? I know in my very first post I listed a few things I wanted to do with this and I think that yeah, I wanted to pontificate some (who doesn’t? even in private) in a thought provoking and humorous way about issues and my life and what I thought was interesting. I also wanted to talk about the boys in the office and all the awesome conversations they have. There is a running joke now about it….I made a comment once that I was going to chronicle their discussions of various snack foods; socks; when to shower (am or pm); how to dry hair; shoes, sports; dinner; trucks; golf; golf shirts; how fast one can eat four big mac’s, 12 oreos, 12 tacos and many many other foods; candy; chips (what exactly makes a chip a chip); soda; dogs; guns; more food…..food discussions are the most frequent. And fucking hilarious.

There was gishwhes too. I wanted to really go on and on and on about gishwhes. I did a little. I also bemoaned some drama and some shit. But I am pretty sure that somewhere I did say that this endeavor could end up just a lot of nothing.  And lo! It’s a lot of nothing!! Which isn’t a bad thing. I’m entertained. While it would be really fucking awesome to be like that Jillee* person and have a semi famous blog and maybe earn some cash and have a lot of people think I’m really cool I’d have to ……. be different. I mean I am pretty cool and I make cool shit. I am a pretty good cook. I have a whole SHIT TON of photography to share; earrings to sell; doodads to look at; knits and crochets to wear; dogs to love on; cats to make fun of; really fun friends to talk about; a tv show to fangirl about; music to muse about (heh – alliteration is fun) (jesus I know that was weak alliteration and I can do better) ; issues to pontificate; funny things say……but man, the time. The organizational skills I’d need. I’m so busy doing all those other things actually getting them into a blog to make me super cool, famous and rich is not usually a top priority. Besides, I can’t stay up all goddamned night anymore. Christ, I do that once and I’m toast at work for the next couple of days. So where do I go from here? Hm.

Jesus, and I just lost my train of thought. See? That’s another thing. Train of thought. I go an misplace it all the fucking time. Thus the name of the blog…..concentration lost….heh, it all makes sense now doesn’t it? Yep. Well maybe not much but some things have been explained. Maybe. Ugh.

ANYWAY, maybe I’ll close this post with some random pictures I’ve taken.

 

^ Taken from the plane flying into Portland

^ A set up of paper beads about to become earrings

^ A dill plant flowered out taken at night, upside down with the flash on

^ The little house thing in my back yard last summer

^ My art table with some of my jewelry making shit out.

^ My sweet Poopsie playing in the hose

^ Some shrooms that were growing in a crook of my pecan tree

^ Lulubelle enjoying the space heater

^ One of the thousands of pictures of the zinnias in my back yard – looooove zinnias

^ Paco – he’s a little disgruntled about the photo op and lack of snack

^ Paco on guard while Poopsie loves on Little Momma

^ Oscar wearing crocheted doughnuts

^ A morning sky from my office window

^ Poopsie putting her rear in the sprinkler

^ Some long ago snow in my backyard at night

^ Christmas lights somewhere in Tulsa

^ Sky, clouds and a rainbow from my back yard

^ Paco chillin’ in the backyard

^ Me and my pal Al on our first ever #SPNFGF (Supernatural Fangirl Friday)

^ An Oregon road

^ Ice Cream the cat and Creepy Baby the doll

^ The Chinese Pastiche that’s famous in my neighborhood in the falltime

^ Some beautiful place in rural Oklahoma – went on a tiny vacation there with a friend

^ An abandoned house I saw going out to the Great Salt Plains one summer

^ Neskowin beach

^ Lulubelle waiting for me to put the phone down

Ok so I took all those pictures myself and if you like them yay and if you don’t oh well and if you think about using them please don’t but tell me you want to and maybe we can work something out but most of all don’t be a dick and say you took those pics or anything and if you don’t like ’em keep that opinion to your self. I’m not egotistical enough to think that these are like the Best Fucking Pictures of Ever and I know they aren’t Magazine Quality or have that Pro Status or whatever, but I took them, I like them, I own them and they tell bits about me, so there. Most important, just don’t be a dick, please, that shit ain’t cool.

 

*Jillee has that blog/website One Good Thing….. I hope it’s ok to put a link to her here….. cause here it is…. https://www.onegoodthingbyjillee.com/

 

 

 

 

 

I had one job…..

Dad, me, Nick, Kaity

Welp, I’ve been needing to write about this and dutifully avoiding it. I feel guilty and shitty. And I’m very very good at denial. I want to talk about my sister and her memorial service and some other things Kaity related, but…..

So I’ll start small.
My little sister was a quiet force of energy. She never made much noise, even when she was very young and talkative. But she was always……I don’t even know what word to use. There are a few that would work but don’t quite cover it. Strong. Stubborn. She didn’t take up much space really but seemed to have a large presence, maybe especially since she always seemed so quiet to me.
When she was little she was so ungraceful. Tripped over her own feet all the time. And she wanted to be a ballerina-mermaid-princess. I was kind of the same way, clumsy and hopeful with my imagination.
Once, she was bored and maybe peeved about being bored and that the neighbors weren’t home to play, so she jammed a bunch of twigs in the locks on their door and Mrs. Neighbor couldn’t get in the house. Man that lady was pissed. Her ice cream was melting. I remember getting home from the beach after spending the whole day there and sand falling out of her butt crack as she ran naked through the house. When she was really small, about three, she was sitting on the couch in front of the turned off tv, sucking her finger and twisting her blanket when my step-mom came in and asked what she was doing and Kaity said “watching tv” like “duh mom, can’t you see?”
Kaity was a funny and sweet and affectionate little girl. She could also be one hell of a pissed off cat too, when provoked, actually hissing like a cat when mad. She sucked her finger, had a blankie and could make friends with any fucking animal anywhere. She was brave and smart. She had more compassion than most people I know. Many of these qualities remained as she grew up and she got some new ones, darker ones too. She became angry. Like me. Depressed, like I was (and still can be). Self destructive… But she was always funny and smart, compassionate, clumsy and imaginative, creative. I hope I am those things too. On good days I am.
I wasn’t able to always be there as her big sister. Not only over a thousand miles separated us but the aforementioned depression, anger and self destructiveness. Being quite a bit older I entered into that earlier than she did and was still there when she started that phase of life. I finally was able to ‘get better’ but by then all that shit had stacked up between us and made the kind of sisterly closeness I had always wanted with her difficult, and ultimately impossible.
The last time I saw her she was in jail. I was in Oregon for my annual trip there and made the appointment to visit her. We only got a half an hour with a thick bulletproof window between us and a gross, shitty phone to talk on. There wasn’t even seating; standing room only, heh. When she came into that little visiting plexiglas cubicle we both cried, couldn’t help it. I wasn’t mad at her or even disappointed, just sad that’s where she was. She said that she hadn’t even cried about any of it; not till she saw me. And she had plenty to cry about. But, also, like me, she’d bellyache about all the things that weren’t really worth bellyaching over and just stuff and deny the big shit, that shit that really hurts us.
We were estranged when she died I guess. I didn’t know it till too late though. She’d been slowly and quietly cutting me out. She was angry at me. I think I know why and what was under it too, but knowing that doesn’t offer solace of any kind. I had been expecting the call about her death for a while too, but that didn’t make it any less shocking, painful or acceptable. “At least she’s at peace now’  asas ma people told me. “She isn’t suffering any more.” I even told myself this trite shit. It didn’t make any of it more palatable.  Nothing about that was ok. It was what it was though, unchangeable, unfixable. And the only thing I could really do was accept it. I mean, what the hell else could I do? I had years of guilt and regret, my own feelings of hurt and resentment, causing hurt and resentment, feeling like a failure, a horrible big sister…the list could go on. And you know, all that shit just makes grief that much harder to bear. Ugh, it makes it so heavy, so easy to despair. Her dying changed me. All those things and feelings and reasons and bullshit really changed me.
God, is there a point to all this painful rambling? Eh, it’s cathartic for one. Two I’m able to tell some things I’ve yet been able to tell. I get to tell you about her, what she was like, some of the good of her. It’s easy to think about that bad shit. The scary, hurtful and horrible shit.
So the good stuff….there is a lot but I keep it kind of secret for some reason. So all y’all should know that it wasn’t all bad and horrible. A lot of it was. Most of it in fact, and how she died, that she died, on top of all that just makes everything so much worse. But jesus guys, she wanted to be a fucking ballerina-mermaid-princess! She had a beautiful singing voice. She was magic when it came to animals. She was creative and had a wild imagination. She loved to read and was so fucking smart. And funny. She liked fairies and dragons, and science fiction. She was tough and strong and brave. She loved music and turned me onto some pretty good shit. She was so caring and wanted to help people. And I miss her and wish I could have another chance to be her big sister.
Kaity, Lisa and me
I hope I haven’t made this too dreary and long. I wanted to also talk about some funny shit. Like her memorial service. Jesus fucking Christ that was something to behold. Some of her friends planned it. Plane tickets for my summer trip out there had already been purchased when she died so they all so very kindly waited to hold the service till I got out there. They took care of all those details like where, who knows, who is bringing what food, eulogies etc. And they were mostly all junkies or had some other kinds of really weird shit going on. So just imagine, if you can, a memorial service for a weirdo junkie planned by junkies and weirdos. And before you get uptight about junkies and weirdos you have to know that I was a junkie and still am a weirdo so chill the fuck out if you’re upset at my description. It was funny.
Well, my part was to bring her ashes. I had already picked them up the day after I got in. (The trip there was a fucking nightmare…I ended up sitting in the Portland airport on my luggage crying and eating day old donuts in front of the Enterprise car rental desk, stranded for about four hours till someone could come pick me up.) My friend Lisa drove down from Washington to be with me that day and spend some time with me. Good thing too, I needed the sane support and a witness to the shenanigans.
So the memorial was held in a really nice park in Salem, by the riverfront.  It was summer so it was nice and bright but there was a high breeze that day; I had my shades on and a sweater just in case the air got cooler. They picked a nice spot, it was a small amphitheater type place, with plenty of room. We walked up with my brother, sister-in-law and the kids and it looked like we were going to a birthday party. There was a nice big table with a decent spread of snack food, small sandwiches and a store bought cake; balloons tied to the railing looking out over the river and a lot of people milling around. There were also some people near the railing holding balloons they had written on. When we were close enough to see and hear what was going on was when the strange really started. Those holding the balloons had written messages to or about Kaity on them and then released them to the sky, exclaiming “there she goes!” and “Bye Kaity! We love you!” One got caught in a tree and someone said “oh no, she’s stuck in the tree”.
I didn’t really know most of the people there so I was just checking it out and looking for the ones I did know when one gal comes up to me. Turns out it was one of the women that ‘found’ her (found is questionable because some of us think she already knew she was there and dead and just came back later to ‘find’ her). We talked briefly, I can’t even remember what we said to be honest. Then she looks at me very seriously and says “CAN I SEE YOUR EYES?” So I lift my shades and let her see and she was visibly disappointed. I felt so weird and confused about it and she just mumbled something about me maybe having Kaity’s eyes. (Kaity had big dark brown eyes and mine are blue.) And then she awkwardly asks “is it really ok to have some of her ashes?”  Whooops.
I HAD ONE JOB
Welp, I said “Oh shit! I left her at the hotel!” and then started laughing. She looked disgusted this time instead of disappointed. She was pretty upset about that. I thought it was funny. I had one job….bring the star of the show to party, and I left her in my room. So Lisa and I went back to the hotel, got her ashes and brought her back for distribution. Several people were hoping to leave that afternoon with a bit of Kaity with them. I think that right there is the high point of the whole entire experience.
Prior to even getting out there I had already made some irreverent jokes about how to display her ashes for sharing, knowing I wasn’t going to do more than open the bag for them. Like, she was a fucking party favor or something. “Don’t forget your Kaity when you leave!” It was pretty windy that day so I opened the box and bag she was in under a table. People had to get under the table so they could scoop her out without the wind blowing my sisters corpse dust all over the snacks and off into the sky. With the balloons. Some people used a plastic cup. Someone else broke out a green baby spoon for scooping and it was left in there when everyone got what they wanted. My brother was grossed out and thought it was creepy that people wanted her ashes. Yeah, it kind of is, but I also kind of got it; it’s an actual piece of Kaity, maybe something more than her body is there or maybe there is some connection between her soul and the ashes; something tangible now that she’s all the way gone. I myself kept a small cup. I have a small amount of Dad’s ashes too. It’s fucking weird but also creepily comforting.
And that was it. That was the service. Some more small talk happened, I awkwardly stood around and then looked through some pictures. A couple of really nice people that weren’t junkies came up to me and talked with me some. I got a nice card and was able to meet a gal in person I had gotten to know on facebook over the past few years. She and Kaity had a good friendship, were really pretty tight for a while and when she was in trouble Krystle would let me know. But man, I had to get out of there. I made sure everyone got all the Kaity they wanted before leaving and Lisa and I took off. Nick etal were already gone, ducking out earlier because it was just too fucking weird and uncomfortable.
The next day Lisa and I went to the coast and I threw her in the ocean. She flew in the wind and the water soaked her up. I don’t know for sure that was what she wanted with what was left of her but that’s what we did with dad, at the same beach too. I figured that she’d be ok with that. I do know that she would have liked to have been mixed up with her husbands ashes but I didn’t really know where they were and thought I’d just….not look for him.
My last day with Kaity on the beach
So there you have it. I wrote some about my sister. I do feel better, like I poured off the top of a drink that was overflowing the glass some. It’s not as well written as I’d like but this was a little more about getting it out than entertainment. To be fully entertained this is more a story to tell than read. But maybe someday when I’m a rich bitch and writing my memoirs I’ll have become a better writer and can make it flow better. Also I’ll have more time for editing and re-reading and editing and re-reading and some shit.
Thanks for reading. And if no one read it, well, then….poop on you. It was funny, so there.
Kaity on the beach, shell hunting

What have I done

So gishwhes….good Lord. I knew I signed up for insanity. I think that was one of the main draws to be honest. I wanted that Gishwhes Experience. Well I don’t know if it’s The Gishwhes Experience but it’s def A Gishwhes Experience. It’s been every single one of the feelings, I think. At least once.

I was supposed to be doing all these really great posts about all the shit we’re doing and how it’s going with teasers about pics to post when all is said and done but guys, well, I didn’t do that. Getting close to the end here and honestly I’m not sure what’s going on.

:fast forward a few days:

Man. It’s Monday now and I think I could still sleep a week. What a ride that shit was. I waited far too long to do this. I should have done Gishwhes ages ago.

So, I’ve been thinking pretty hard about what I want to write about, or how I want to describe what happened but I’m still kind of processing maybe? Yesterday I was so fucking tired all I wanted to do was sleep. Not as tired this morning but I could have slept a few more hours. But it’s back to regular life today. In a way I’m pretty happy about that but also I feel like I need a vacation. Also, hormones and Ice Cream the Cat are driving me nuts this morning. Jesus if it’s not one thing, it’s always several other things.

So we all know that our team had a pretty rough start. What with it all being our first time ever to do this then those first team members we got, I’m pretty sure none of us were prepared for the actual week of the hunt. But then, what light was granted us! What a miracle was sent to us! What goodness they gave us!!! The icky people were gone and the new team members saved the day! I was seriously considering just saying fuck it all and not doing it. I so close to just giving up. Sometimes I can be overtaken by despondency and man was I taken over. Thank all that’s good and holy that Team FrumpBusters was saved. And right before the hunt started too. Like, Friday. The day before the hunt. And BAMMO I was thrust into high-speed chaos for the next week.

I’ve worked on teams before. Been on conference committees. Once I even chaired a conference. But I think I was woefully unqualified to head up a Gishwhes team. Thankfully the team I had was a motherfukcing kick ass group of people.

So maybe what I should say about the whole thing is how it was amazing. How it pushed me to keep trying even though I wanted to hit the fuck it button. I was made to get out of my comfort zone. I was made to go against my introvert nature and talk to people, trust people. Let results be what they may. And those are all reasons I decided to do Gishwhes. I’ve known about it a few years now but have been scared of trying it. I was sure that I couldn’t do it. But this past year hasn’t been the hardest year I’ve had by far, but it’s been….ugh, I don’t know. Hard but not, sad but not, depressed but not, lonely but not. All totally contradictory. And all very accurate. And I needed something to force me out of it.

In the past when I needed a Jumpstart like this I have been known to go to unhealthy measures to get that relief. In the past decade and a halfish though, I’ve learned better ways to cope with a pretty heavy case of The Blahs. Or downright fucked up times too. (all that is for another blog post). That being said, this year, while not bad has certainly tested me. Last summer my sister died. Right at the end of June. Today is her birthday too (another blog post may be coming). I had been expecting it to be honest, but that doesn’t prepare you for the call. It wasn’t pretty. Actually it was tragic. And it threw me for a pretty big loop. All these feeeeeeeelings and more feeeeeelings and then family and feelings and travelling and feelings and more feelings that I, successfully or not, crammed pretty far inside. Jesus who wants to feel all that and sort it out? There were circumstances that made it more complicated. We were estranged and goddamn but that made even more icky feelings. So I really pulled in on myself and isolated. I dropped a lot of commitments. Didn’t even really want to work in the yard, and that’s my jam y’all. Well, one of my jams. So yeah, I guess I was a little depressed, numbed out, kinda separate from people and things I loved.

I cannot live to good purpose that way. I cannot sustain that kind of ‘offness’ for long without repercussions. I shared a little with a couple of people about it but it was such a tangled mess inside and feeeeeeelings. Plus I didn’t want to be a whiny baby (I know I know don’t talk like that but it’s a thing I do sometimes). And then GISHWHES!!!!!

I decided it’s fucking time to get my big girl panties back out and do something. Nothing changes if nothing changes, yeah?  And sometimes I do the whole ‘go big or go home’ routine to varying degrees success. I think this time it went well.

So I signed up to feel all the stuff that people have written about in blogs and blurbs and articles and chat rooms. I did it to make some new connections and refresh some old ones. I did it to fucking feeeeeeeeeeeel shit. And goddamn did I ever feel. Holy shit balls.

If you’ve read the previous posts you may have seen the one about the first set of new team members we got. Jesus Fucking Christ Almighty that was a fucking nightmare mess. And I felt. Then we got the new new team members and they were a dream come true and FrumpBusters was saved. Because I was this . close to quitting. Omg and Slack. Who knew?!?! I know it was crazy for some people and moved so fast with so much stuff but looooooved it. I loved the fucking weird random conversations. I loved how we came together when the Mean Man was Being Mean. I fucking loved how excited people got when we met the new ladies. I loved learning about Trello, and new music, and different ideas and just all that shit that we blabbered and shared about. I loved how I got to spend time with an old friend that lives states away and make new ones and get closer to the ones here.

And then the challenges. Dear God. I fucking peed my pants kids. Laughed so hard I peed my pants and I am not sorry. I’d do it again in a heartbeat.

So, Team FrumpBusters, you helped me out of a funk, back into some creativity and positive actions. You gave me so much joy (eeech, corny I know, it’s fucking disgusting but true) and something exciting to look forward to in a way I haven’t in what feels like a very long time.  Thank you for doing it with me even though all y’all had a lot of shit going on in your worlds. It means more than I can articulate. And I just don’t think I have adequately described the fucking awesome gift this was for me. I needed gishwhes. I neeeeeeded it. So here’s some squishy hearty gross squishy feelings of goodness and gratitude.

And some pictures.