Things I Love Thursday

Dudes, this is the last Things I Love Thursday of 2010. ZOMG!

Sunshine sunshine summer summer sunshine. We had a stunningly gorgeous Christmas Day for once. Then the weather packed in good and proper, lots of rain and gale force winds that broke windows and tried to tear my building apart. Then yesterday it decided we should have summer after all and we’ve had two days of lovely weather. Lee and I met up with Jase, Liz and Frejya at Waitangi Park yesterday afternoon for a picnic and it was lovely. Really pleasantly warm and chillaxed. I hope it stays good over the weekend so I can try and get to a beach.

Boxing Day Sales. JB Hi-Fi have this amazing 30% off all DVDs, Blu Rays and CDs so I have stocked up on many movies I wanted plus the third season of 30 Rock. So cheap! I also got some $5 bracelets, a couple of v cheap tops at Jay Jays and new running shoes for just $80 at Rebel. Oh and a cheap new camera at Dick Smith’s. Nice one. I may now make myself a resolution that I won’t buy stuff for a good long while.

Christmas food. Christmas may be past but the baking and gifted chocolates linger on. Nom.

Writing
. Time off work means time to spend writing or editing. Today I finished an epic short story (it might actually be a novellette or a novella) which I’ve been writing since Dec 11th based on some old story prompts Matt gave me. (Although I guess I only used ‘immediately after a fire’ and a bit of ‘growing sense of dread’.) I have also done a heap of work on my old Roleplaying Game “I Know, Right?” which is now called “High School Princess” with an eye to trying to sell it when I get Silver Kiss sorted for selling.

Tanya’s work on Silver Kiss. My lovely friend Tanya has done an amazing job on the design of Silver Kiss of the Magical Twilight of the Full Moon and I get a big grin whenever I look at it. The colours and the fonts and the way it all fits together…sigh. I could never have got anything that stunning on my own, so I’m very excited about it indeed. I am currently getting advice on how and where to sell it online and how much to charge…it’s thrilling.

Tangled. Sophie asked me to see this with her on Boxing Day and I guess it was a preview weekend, because it isn’t meant to open until January 6th but it was freaking awesome. Rapunzel was kick ass and funny and cute and above all: neurotic and kooky. Also Flynn Rider was amazing and I might have a little crush on him. And the horse! Hilarious! Okay so I have to go and see this again I think.

Rock Band 3. Lee got me this for Christmas and the keyboard/keytar to go with it. It’s pretty awesome, although the game play is sufficiently different from previous Rock Bands that I’m not too sure what we’re doing a lot of the time, it’s good fun. Good new songs include Yoshimi battles the pink robots, Back to Black (Amy Winehouse), Good Vibrations (challenging harmonies to work out) Bohemian Rhapsody (OMG!) and Space Oddity.

Honourable Mentions: mooching around the house in PJs, basking in the sun, My Little Pony cookies, the hazelnut swirls from Roses chocolates, cherries, old friends, new friends, sashimi, eating at Namastey India and being the only people there (yum food there too), my nieces and nephew, my non-related nieces (Freyja’s ‘where is it?’ expression and gestures are soooooo cute!) Leonard Cohen’s music and philosophy, Ender in Exile, Join Me and lots of other new books to read.

Last one of the year, folks. What are you thankful for today?

2010 the year that was

I usually do a list of my ‘accomplishments’ right before my birthday, a way to celebrate my extra experience and the ways I am changing my life. But I didn’t have time this year, I was way too busy rewriting Rain for that competition. So now seems like a good time, now that lots of blogs are doing year-in-review type stuff and I am preparing to read How to be Rich and Happy again and actually *finish it* this time.

So let’s see, what have I achieved in the last year?

– I edited and rewrote my novel Rain dramatically in a short period of time, and learned heaps about the editing and writing process while I did it. (Remove ‘that’ as much as you can is the lesson which has really stuck with me.)

– I changed my job.

– I sang a song, a capella in front of more than one person. It was nerve wracking and weird and my confidence was pretty low but I did it anyway and it was almost awesome.

– I had a twitter length short story published online which I was paid money for.

– Travelled to Auckland twice and to Fiji once.

– Saw Leonard Cohen perform live for the second time.

– Hosted a successful Thanksgiving dinner for which I cooked a fantastic roast turkey. Mmmmm turkey. I want turkey again.

– Costumes: Lime Chiffon, Catwoman, Hell Girl, 1900 birthday girl, Regency middle daughter, Queen Guinevere, rebellious 13 year old, heiress attending a seance…that’s all the ones I can remember.

– Attended my first New Zealand science fiction convention, where I met some truly lovely writers and got heaps and heaps of inspiration for my own writing.

I can’t remember anything else significant right this moment, but I reserve the right to add more to this list!

Christmas Day advent calendar

I have given and received the presents.

I have eaten no less than seven different kinds of meat. I also ate a slice of cherry pie and a bunch of fresh cherries.

I had time for a nap in the early afternoon which was so deep and excellent that I woke up unsure where Lee was, where I was, what day it was and why I was in bed.

I have laughed and played and liberated a doll from its packaging.

It’s been a good Christmas. I have lots of new books to read and we have new TV to watch. I love my big, messy family and the way everyone is included.
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Christmas Eve advent calendar

Happy Christmas Eve everybody!

Had an awesome day, I started off cleaning all the things and doing the dishes. I also dropped into work to collect a package with some partial Christmas presents and finished those off just as the first guest turned up.

I’ve eaten too many cookies, candies and drunk too much fizzy stuff. I have sampled maple bacon fudge and received a number of lovely presents as well as given some presents which were much appreciated. Great day!

Now we’re trying out the game You Know Who sent me, which is the board game of Broken Picture Telephone, and it is awesome.
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Almost Christmas Things I Love Thursday

Christmas is a loving honest and charitable time. And though it’s never put a scrap of gold or silver in my pocket I believe Christmas has done me good and will do me good and I say God bless it!
~ Scrooge’s nephew Fred. (Muppet Christmas Carol.)

Christmas Christmas Christmas! Carols, cookies, trees, sparkles, people giving presents, TV specials, my niece and nephew staring at the decorations of the tree, people who give me fudge, love and togetherness.

Being off work! If I want to take some time to bask in the sun, I can. If I want to stay in my PJs until 1pm, no worries. Mmmmm. No more work til January 5th. Bliss.

New baby! The lovely Cal and Morgue have had their baby and she is adorable.

My brain is on holiday completely. I spent the day baking (got it all done, yes!) and I can’t think of anything else to add…except for this video:

And I guess you guys would like an advent calendar image, so here you go…
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Sister back in the country Wednesday advent calendar

I left the house early today to go to the airport and along with my parents, collect my sister and her family. I may have cried a little happiness tear or two when we saw her.

They hadn’t slept much, and the kids hadn’t slept on the plane much, but we went grocery shopping and to the mall, picked them up a cell phone and had lunch at KFC. I drove back around 2 (leaving them all to have a nap), stopping on the way for craft supplies and a new pair of polka dot ballet flats (so cute!) Also swung by Moore Wilson’s to collect a gift on sister’s behalf. Then I had a nap and I haven’t moved off the couch since…

But whatevs, you’re here for your pretty picture!
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PTA ep 3

Howard Masters has a meeting with the ex-director of the FBI and then has an odd dream. There are notes in his diary which make no sense “cigar is cigar”. He wakes up on a greyhound bus, which is heading for the far North, Anchorage. He doesn’t remember how he got there, but his suitcase is in one of the overhead racks.

Will is driving and singing “King of the Road” to piss off Helen. John is singing as well. Helen talks to TED, the sentient programme she gets info off. They are heading to Achorage, Racquel is accompanying them in her little red corvette. They arrive and check into the hotel. Will and Helen argue over what to have for dinner, Racquel goes off on her own as she’s hungry now.

We next see Racquel making out with someone in a dark alley, who the camera reveals is Hitchens (Will’s ex partner and a vampire.) After they kiss, Racquel punches him and he allows that he probably deserved that. They go to a diner to get some food.

Flashback: Masters is examining Helen in a clean laboratory. He’s showing her Rorscharch ink blots. She says the first one is a bullet exit wound in the back of a head. The second one she says is a sawn off shotgun. The third one she says is kittens and puppies. He shows her a photo of herself with her parents and she says it’s a happy family. There is shouting from the other side of the one way glass. Suraya can be heard shouting that the doctor shouldn’t be in there on his own with Helen. Howard asks Helen if she is in any pain and she says there is pain in her head. He gives her a shot just as the door opens and a lab assistant enters.

In the diner Racq and Hitchins talk. He is goading her about her demonic side, and being a bad girl. He gets under her skin and she explodes into demon form, leaps across the table and attacks him. She throws him across the room and into the front counter just as Will, Helen and John walk in looking for dinner. Will confronts Hitchins, asking what he’s doing in town. He hedges, saying ‘business’. Then Racquel, who has been crawling about on the ceiling, drops on Hitchins like a drop bear. They pull away from Will and tussle. Will shouts for all the poor innocent bystanders to leave and that he’s an FBI agent. Once the area is clear Helen turns the fire hose on Racq and Hitchins. Racq leaps out the window and runs away. Will grabs Hitchins to stop him leaving, but he wriggles free.

Back at the hotel Racq is sitting in her car, gripping the steering wheel with both hands and staring forward. John has brought her handbag and huge fur coat back from the diner, and is also wearing Hitchins’ hat.
Will: Why did you bring that?
John: I thought you’d want to smell it…track his scent.
Will: I worked with him for two years, I know what he smells like.
John: You could use it to see who he has been talking to.
Will: Yeah, maybe if he rubbed it on all the people he’s been talking to! …wait. He might have. Pass it here.

Helen and Will look at the car, then at each other. Neither of them want to reach out to Racq but they know they have to. Will approaches the car and taps on the window. She winds the window down and looks up at him.
Will: You got back all right, good.
Racq: …
Will: Hitchins got away.
Racq: …
Will: So. Yeah.
Will walks away. Helen approaches the car.
Helen: We could go and kill some things if you like?
Racq: I don’t think killing things is going to help.
Helen: It’s a remedy for all occasions.

Racq doesn’t take her up on it, so she goes into the hotel, zapping a squirrel on the way past. John goes up to the car and gives Racq her bag and coat. She thanks him.
Racq: Are they always this business-like?
John: Helen has hidden depths. Quite, quite well hidden. I don’t know, I don’t think Will knows quite how to…he’s a complicated man. But Suraya trusts him.

Racq asks John to join him for a drink and they walk off together. The camera pans up to show a wolf sneaking out the back door of the hotel and going for a run into the snowy woods.