Summery Saturday Morning

Nice short week with the stat holidays, etc. I had now read volume one of The Absolute Sandman and have started in on volume two. I compared the art in Doll’s House to the original trade paperback and the difference was astounding. I think the difference will become less marked as I go though, since it was only the really early stuff that was really ropey but still. Lovely lovely big leather bound books full of prettiness and wonderful stories.

I have just this morning finished a notebook. I have filled this notebook with the first part of my new novel and I appear to be writing this one chronologically as the lead character talks in my head. So easy, so good. I am beginning to think of my first novel in quite scathing ‘first novel’ terms though, so it will be good to catch up with C tomorrow and hear what she has to say about it.

At the boxing day sales I got four more DVDs Black Snake Moan, Rent*, The Protector (for Lee) and Kiss, Kiss, Bang, Bang. I got the boxed set of all the Sisterhood of the Travelling Pants books for $40 and the new book in the Michelle Paver Torak series, called Outcast.

I also picked up the Little Golden Book called The Sailor Dog because it is pure nostalgia to look at the pictures and read the words. Love it to bits.

I also bought myself a couple of summer dresses at the big Ezibuy sale and a $5 tshirt that shall be altered. I got the board shorts I wanted and a pair of Shelley’s ballet flats that I have been coveting all year.
Christmas and Boxing Day are so much consumer-driven fun!

Now it is another stunningly sunny day and I want to go out in it. But I shall continue writing. Or I shall type up what I have written already and then I can give you a word count.

PoF: pjs again. I love my pjs.
CO: weekending
*I did have Rent previously, but I somehow lost the disc. I bought the new copy for $7.50.

Another Christmas over

I’m feeling pretty contented this year, I’ve had none of that post-Christmas disappointment that I normally do.
Hosting Christmas turned out to be fine, we had delicious bacon, eggs, kranskies and croissants for brunch and then snacked way too much on cookies and chocolates and stuff. As you do.

Present-wise I was very spoiled, my lovely Lee gave me volume one of Absolute Sandman which I accidentally found out I was getting a couple of weeks ago. What I didn’t know is that he’d organised his family to go in together and get me the second volume as well! I also got lovely gifts from my friends and family, books, chocolates, the nerdiest tshirt ever, food things, a little art block thingie and DVDs (boxed set of Rome.

I didn’t manage to sleep properly after 6am, dumb excitement. It was wonderful seeing all my family and all Lee’s family as well though, there were 20 people at dinner! And still way too much food leftover!

It was also lovely catching up with so many of my friends on Sunday and feeding them lebkuchen with Giffy’s lemon icing on it. Yum!
Today: The Boxing Day sales, then Golden Compass at 4.30. Then back to Lee’s parents to help them eat the leftovers. Hoo boy.

PoF: PJs
CO: Absolute Sandman is so pretty!

also, I am totally addicted to the superheroes game on Facebook. Man it’s good.

entry 1100

A list of things that I liked as a kid and are still great:

-Watching ducks on the pond.
-Pink icing biscuits with hundred and thousands on them
-Duck Tales, the TV show
-Ribena
-Chocolate finger biscuits
-The carol “away in a manger”
-Christmas

A list of things that I liked as a kid, but aren’t any good now that I have grown up:

-Luncheon meat
The Pirate Movie
-Fairy bread
-The carol “Rudolph the red nosed reindeer”

PoF: sharks
CO: Christmas!

Night Divine

I really love Christmas carols. I just discovered last night that I have “The Best Christmas Album in the World Ever” and have been listening to it ever since.

I have now read Jynx by Meg Cabot, and it was very good. A little darker than her Princess Diaries, but not as dark as the Mediator stuff. I’m quite invested in the characters now and I’m hoping for a sequel.
I have also (finally) read the latest Y: the Last Man trade paperback, called Motherland. It was surprising. Very good, touching on old characters I thought we’d left behind, but with some significant plot developments as well. Must pass it to Hix on Sunday.

It feels like our sunny hot weather is back, after an astonishingly cold week with rain and Southerlies. I am happy about that.
Don’t have much news, I’m working a six day week this week, so that I can have Christmas Eve off to prepare for hosting Christmas. It is harder than I thought it’d be, but I think that’s just because I’ve been having trouble sleeping this week. I got a great sleep last night and am feeling heaps better.

Big earthquake last night. 6.8 and centered just South of Gisborne. It went for ages!
I think I shall type up some of my new book now.

PoF: robot pjs
CO: so warm in the sun

who wants to be a millionaire?

We finished playtesting Seraph’s Kapcon scenario last night. It’s a Resident Evil game using the Mountain Witch as a system and it was freaking awesome.

I do rather suspect that The Mountain Witch brings out the worst in me though.

The premise was killer: the PCs are all in prison. They are given a mission; go to Raccoon City and retrieve the retrovirus, and for a reward you get whatever you want. The city is of course overrun with zombies and freaky bio-weapon mutants.
The team is not exactly trustful of each other, to top it off.

I played Dr Abraham Blake, and I wasn’t a nice guy. I was very cold and to the point. My dark secret was that I had a True Motive for being there, and I decided that it would be I was trying to free my family. As it turned out my family had already moved out of state and my daughter was only in the city for a visit.

I managed to save her, but at a cost. Svend’s mobster muscle guy had a Revenge dark secret and it was against me, so I died to save my daughter. Svend shot me in the head. It was cold, but not undeservedly so.

I don’t want to give away any of the story, because it is very fun and I recommend those attending Kapcon see if they can play in it.
So. Cool fun cool times. I am working through writing a Fruits Basket roleplaying game and Hix gave me a great idea last night for writing Tohru up, so that’s awesome too.

Wrote some more of my new novel yesterday, and am getting close to filling up the notebook. Nearly.

PoF: My turn
CO: sleepy. So very sleepy.

Mubble

My sister is moving to Rarotonga. In about five weeks, less maybe. It’s a bit scary, a bit exciting. It’s a fantastic opportunity for her husband over there and it’s going to be so cool to be able to go over there and visit them and stay in their house.

Anyways, I am all planned for Christmas. Presents are wrapped and crammed under the tree and my tree is all covered in decorations and candy canes I got from my work.

Our gifts from work were super awesome.

I read Fruits Basket volume 22 and there is only one to go. I am now desperate for the last one so that I can have the whole series finished, but at the same time I really don’t want it to finish at the same time. Conflicted.
I also read the new Jacqueline Wilson book Kiss which I liked a lot.

Now I am reading Jynx by Meg Cabot which is basically The Craft in book form and written by Meg, whom I love.

PoF: skirt
CO: woop woop

More on writing

Since C has my first novel manuscript and there’s nothing I can do on it currently, I am powering (‘scuse the pun) through my second book. A chick-lit about a superhero. (See the pun now?)

I have named her Shelly Gold and I am writing it from her point of view which is just *so* much easier than third person. It’s literally flowing out of me when I write it and I’ve filled more than half a wee moleskine notebook with her neurotic ramblings. It’s all very exciting, a new relationship where everything is new and intriguing.

Watch me as I keep writing and I get to the difficult stuff and like it a lot less! For now though, me and Shelly are happy together. As soon as I can name the city she is living in I will be content as well.

I finished reading Eclipse this morning, which was better than I had dreaded. I was sad, but satisfied with the steps Bella took emotionally throughout the book. I am maybe even looking forward to the next one.

I am now reading Kiss which is the new Jacqueline Wilson. I have finished Gilmore Girls season two. I am borrowing seasons 3 and 4 from my workmate on Monday. So good!

PoF: Care Bears
CO: wheee!

Lebkuchen

My best recipe for Christmas cookies, up online by special request.

I originally got this recipe from “The Really Reliable New Zealand Cookbook” which had some very good bread recipes as well. My sister has it.

Lebkucken.

50g butter
1 cup of honey
3/4 cup brown sugar
1 tablespoon lemon juice
1 tablespoon grated lemon rind
2 teaspoons cinnamon
1 teaspoon ground cloves
1 teaspoon nutmeg
1 teaspoon allspice
1/2 teaspoon baking soda
3-4 cups plain flour

Put everything except the flour and baking soda into a medium saucepan, stirring over a low heat until it is all blended and the sugar is no longer grainy. Do not boil. Remove from heat and let cool.

Once it’s cool you can add the baking soda and stirring the flour in. Start with one cup and then add a half cup at a time, mixing thoroughly between each addition.
Eventually it will be firm enough to roll out. The more flour you add the harder the biscuits will be at the end, so try and tough it out through all four cups of flour. (I can’t stand soft biscuits.)

At this point you can start rolling out the dough or just stick it in the fridge to wait for when you want biscuits. The dough lasts well in an airtight container or rolled up in glad wrap.

Roll it out 5mm thick and cut into shapes. They can go quite close to each other on the baking sheet because they don’t rise much. Bake on 170 degrees Celsius for 10-20 minutes, until the edges go brown.

Cool them on a rack and decorate with icing if you are so inclined.
Enjoy.

PoF: Robot shirt
CO: Christmas is coming!

Funeral

I went to my first ever funeral yesterday. Well, it might not have been the first I’ve attended. I may have gone to my Granddad’s funeral when I was four, but if I did I don’t remember it.

I’ve known P since third form. In second year university I became friends with W and his sister M. At my birthday P and W met and eventually they got together and got married. They are important people, P and W helped out at our wedding doing ushering and driving. We always get on with them.

W and M’s father died suddenly last Saturday, I don’t remember much of him. He did the barbeque at P and W’s engagement party and I may have said something to him at their wedding. We went to his house a few times for various reasons and I remember watching the big Guy Fawkes fireworks with them one year.
I went to support my friends. I am glad I did.

The funeral was lovely, full of personality and loving memories. There was a lot of laughter as well as tears and W’s tribute was fantastic. I sat next to Chelle and Lee and I shed a few tears. Music was played: Little River Band’s Cool Change, Abba’s I have a Dream and the coffin was carried out to I Would do anything for love by Meatloaf, which is one of my mother’s favourite songs.
More than anything the ceremony celebrated his life and the things that people loved about him, and allowed mourning as well.

It has made me introspective. It makes me want to tell everyone I love how I feel and why. It makes me want to plan the music I want played at my funeral. (Happy Phantom by Tori Amos?) It makes me want to seize the day and get out in the world and *do stuff*. Write more, get published, go to the beach…..just live really.

It also has made me fear the future a little, the day when I am attending the funeral of someone a little more significant in my life, and I wonder how on Earth I will cope on that day. I hope it is a long way off.

PoF: Summer Girl wants a sundress. If I had known it would be so warm in NZ I would have bought pretty sundresses in Australia!
CO: Making the most of life