i'm darkness and light, bubbles and faerie wings. i am sparkles and glitter, shadows and clouds. i love purple, and faeries, and books, and music.

Ramblings by Category

Ramblings by Year

tuesday things

This was going to be a Seven Things on a Sunday post, but I have been so out of it with this flu that if I am not working, I am sleeping. So I am starting over with my random thoughts.

Turns out Yoshi’s unconditional love has conditions. Well, at least one condition. Yoshi does not like when I cough. Not at all. The entire time I have been sick (since Dec. 27 and counting), Yoshi has stayed as far away from me as he can. He sleeps in another room at night. He doesn’t make eye contact. He hides when I cough. He does NOT like when I make face noises. It’s been rather lonely at night, as I am used to him using me as a pillow while he sleeps. It’s also sort of depressing because he won’t snuggle with me anymore. I hope this stupid flu goes away soon. I miss my floofy shadow.

Also, Yoshi cries when you groom him. Especially the closer you get to his bottom. Just try and brush those pantaloons on him and he’ll yelp and whine like you’re abusing him. He’s pretty, but my goodness is he the biggest baby of a dog we have ever had. And this includes Jinx who was so sensitive to everything that if you swore, or raised your voice, he’d slink away upstairs and hide.

I ams FIVE! - YoshiBear

Yoshi turned 5 on January 1st. My New Year’s BABY bearDog.

I have an immense love for English muffins. I don’t know why they make me so happy, but they do. They are delicious and I am thankful that someone thought to create such a wonderous food product.

It is an amazing feeling to be excited about reading once more. It’s been way too long. I’ve already finished 8 books so far this month alone. I’m on a reading binge. I see books people are buying at work and I am desperate to read them ALL. I have books taken out of the library, and I just partook of a sale at work and bought five more books on the weekend. I am going through these babies like hotcakes. Mmmm. Hotcakes.

My second-to-last course in the Ryerson Publishing program (I have been slowly making my way though) starts on Monday. It’s Publicity for Book Publishers. I am excited about this course because my original dream goal from this diploma was to work in publicity for children’s books. Though I am rethinking this now only because I have realized just how much I love selling books to people. I could work for one publisher and publicize their children’s lit to the world (which, would be amazing. And I know which Publishing house I want to work in if that ever becomes a reality), but ultimately, I think I want to stick to bookstores when it comes to working with books. I can recommend and sell so many wonderful titles, and not stick to one publishing house all the time. I have a lot to think about. Meanwhile, I am simply going to continue to love every freaking second of my job and sharing my love of books with other people. (I’m a huge pusher of Canadian authors in the kid’s lit genre. So I’m happily tossing books from authors whom I adore at customers. GO CANADA!)

I can’t believe my time in the Publishing program is almost over. It was  – at the time – the scariest decision I made to go back to school after 17 years and see if I could change career paths. I didn’t mean for the diploma to take so long to finish (5 years, yo), but life, and trauma, and more life, happened and made this a slow process. Even though my original goal has changed, I knew I wanted to finish the program and register to graduate from it because it’s been quite the ride. After this winter’s course, I have one 6-week course left. And then…done. I’m sort of bewildered by this. I didn’t think I could do this, and I was worried I’d have to give it up because of those little set-backs. Though I took one year off, so I am going to be finishing this a year later than I thought I would. I am proud of myself for having been able to stick to it through everything that happened.

I am finally getting my voice back since losing it December 27. You have no idea how horrible it has been for me to not be able to SING for the past 2 weeks. No singing in the shower! No singing in the car! No singing around the house! And feeling way guilty about not being able to approach customers at work and ask if they need help. Gah! I am, like, the original Chatty Cathy! Not having a voice is hard. And this has been one doozy of a flu. I am actually thankful that I am working part time right now because I can SLEEP as much as I need to and my shifts have been shorter so it’s a nice way to get me out of the house, but still. I want this to be over. No more coughing! No more sleeping all day! MORE voice!

And I suppose that’s it for now. Blogging more is something I want to do this year. Since I’ll have slightly more free time than I did while working full-time, I am hoping it’s something I will be able to continue to do!

five favourite silly films

5favefilms

Sometimes days are tough. Sometimes you go too long without smiling, or laughter. It’s impossible to completely distance yourself from negativity blasting out from every direction – tv, radio, newspaper, internet… And when things get to be too much, I sometimes turn to a comfort that isn’t reading, or music.

There are a handful of silly films that never fail to make me laugh, no matter how often I have watched them. Some of them I own, others I need to remember to buy so I have them on hand when I need it. I thought I’d share five of the films that I adore regardless of how cheesy or silly they are.

The Emperor's New Groove

The Emperor’s New Groove

(Disney, 2000) I think this is possibly my most favourite Disney movie even though I have always said Snow White was my favourite. There’s something about TENG that makes me gasp-for-air-laugh every single time I watch it. There’s not one character I don’t like. The villains are hilarious. (“Why do we even have that lever?!”)  I think it helps that I have always found llamas amusing. But this movie is my ultimate feel-better-about-life comfort comedy, from Kronk’s self-sung theme music, to Kuzco’s silly llama shenanigans, to the the little old man who warns you beware the “groooooove”. This movie is just giggles galore. (IMDB link.)

Bring it On

Bring It On

(Beacon, 2000) If I’m not watching The Emperor’s New Groove to cheer myself up, I’m probably watching Bring It On. I fell in love with this movie the second I saw it. I’ve even watched all of the other sequel-type cheer movies, but this one is my heart movie. I can’t ever watch this one too often. It is so much fun! (except for the barfing scene. Ugh.) (IMDB link.)

Josie and the Pussycats

Josie and the Pussycats

(Universal, 2001) So much camp! So cheesy! So punny! But So! Much! Fun! This is a total parody movie, but by golly does it make me laugh. I also bought the soundtrack because I kinda love the music from this movie. This really isn’t the most intelligent of movies, but it’s sugary fun. And you sort of have to tune out any idea of the comic book group, because this is so far off from that creation that you wonder why they even used the name. Still, it makes me laugh. A lot. (IMDB link.)

MegaMind

Megamind

(DreamWorks, 2010) This movie joined my top 5 favourites by total accident. I had avoided watching it for so long, and then when I was off on med leave a few years ago, I put it on since it was free on Netflix. I had zero expectations of getting through the movie, let alone liking it. It’s a surprisingly hilarious movie. I have only watched this twice, unlike the other movies that I turn to when I need a laugh, but it’s coming up on time to watch it again. The humour is a lot more subtle than I thought it would be. There are many laugh-out-loud moments in this film, too. One of the best things is finding a delightful movie when you least expect it. (IMDB link.)

Tangled

Tangled

(Disney, 2010) If you had asked me the first time I watched Tangled if it would ever end up one of my favourite movies, I’d have laughed at you. The first time I watched the movie I was extremely underwhelmed. I didn’t like it much at all. And then I noticed people talking about it all the time, and quoting from it, and talking about Flynn Rider’s “smoulder”, and I’d laugh. And I’d think, “hey, yeah, that WAS funny” Not to mention I did love the horse. I eventually watched the movie again – and loved it. I loved it a LOT. I have watched it a few more times since then and each time I watch it I find something else more charming, and more funny that I missed the first time. I am now totally Team Tangled. (IMDB link.)

Hmm, I just noticed that these films all seem to have come out around the same time. Three between 2000-2001, and two in 2010. I guess those are golden years for humour. Most of the stuff that comes out now isn’t nearly as entertaining. But that’s ok. I still have these films to pick me up when I am home sick, or feeling blue. They all make me laugh out loud, and help me get through the blahs.

space filler

YoshiBear in the window

I have had nothing to write about. Nothing that I feel is worthy about posting online, anyhow. I suppose I could post little bits and bobs of posts from my phone, but I just don’t like blogging by phone.

I feel bad though, because I love having this blog, and I love (or I used to love) blogging. I am not sure what’s up with me and blogging these days, but I’m not neglecting it on purpose.

I think perhaps my perspective on what to write about has changed over the years. Sometimes you have such a run of bad news, and negativity, that you step back from sharing things with the entire world (aka, Internet). Once the clouds clear away, you’re stuck in the non-sharing mode and it’s apparently difficult to get back into the swing of things.

I could blog about how Yoshi turns down my sheets almost every night about bed. (I will – I just need to edit the photos so I can upload them.)

I could blog about how I came home from work early last week and discovered that Shawn had made the house magical, and sparkly by putting up out-door lights. And when I walked into the house, he had also put up other Christmas decorations, and it just made my bad day seem so far away because…WHIMSY! (Again, I have to edit photos.)

I could blog about how the course I am taking this semester – Intro to Book Design – is taking up SO MUCH of my time, but OMG am I ADORING the course. I am currently making a travel guide to Disney World. But using InDesign is time consuming, and I just don’t HAVE much free time until this course is over.

I’m also knitting again. I’m working on a scarf for a friend, though Yoshi is quite concerned about his own lack of scarf. The one I started for another friend months ago, was finally finished. Yoshi was thrilled, until I washed it and wouldn’t let him near it. He wanted it for himself. For some reason he likes wearing scarves. Perhaps I’ll make him one for Christmas.

I just don’t know what to write about anymore. I don’t want this to become a dog-blog, because I’m more than just a person who talks about her dogs (shush. It’s true! Although my instagram feed sort of makes it look like I only discuss Yoshi.)

Anything you folk(s) want to read about? So far I know my Mum reads my blog… I hope some others still do. 😉 Leave a comment if you want me to write about something. That might help me get back into the groove of things.

Meanwhile, I leave you with that lovely above photo of Yoshi. Since Shawn put up the lights, I get a lovely, sparkly YoshiBear in the window when I come home from work. It’s the most heart-warming thing EVER!

declutter your mind

Declutter Your Mind (& Phone)

I am an obsessive sort of person. I have an addictive personality. I am prone to anxiety and panic attacks. I can be manic one second, and depressive another. All of these things make it very easy for me to have on-going chatter in my head. It gets loud in there sometimes. Especially at night.

I always have my phone with me, but I rarely use it as a phone. I know. I will send text messages more often than placing a voice call. I don’t like talking to people on the phone. I mostly use my phone for my camera, and a few games. And, like so many other people in the world, social media.

Social media (Facebook, Twitter, Goodreads, etc) is an extremely loud universe. And it is super easy for an obsessive, addictive person to get sucked in and drown from information over-load. The thing is, 99.9% of that information isn’t actually informative – or relevant.

I go through phases where my Facebook and Twitter feeds annoy the crap out of me. 9 out of 10 updates I see make me irrationally angry. I flirt with deleting my account, or deleting people from my friends list. I mute people, and hide them from my feed. I am not someone who wants to read political, religious, hot-topic posts (and the inevitable arguments that follow). I don’t want to see photos of abused animals, children, or adults. I like seeing photos of your life. I like seeing photos of your pets. I like funny jokes.

Though I have to say, following so many people, brands, and media outlets, things get awfully noisy in my brain. I carry annoyance and anger with me to bed, even though I might have read whatever it was that annoyed me hours before. I scroll through feeds while travelling to and from work. While waiting for, well, anything. Waiting for an appointment. Waiting for the elevator. Waiting for food I ordered to arrive at my table.

But why? Why am I cluttering up my brain with all of this useless stuff? Granted, it’s easier for me to glance at my phone for snippets of other people’s lives while on the bus, than it is for me to read. I get extremely motion sick on the bus (or any moving vehicle, except for trains!) and I cannot read a book. So short bursts from Twitter or Facebook are sort of easy to digest.

Lately I have been finding myself becoming more and more annoyed by what I am reading online. So I made a decision – I do not need to be connected to social media 24/7. This isn’t a huge revelation. This isn’t some epiphany. It’s just the right time to step back and declutter my head. I have enough in my brain that I don’t need to add more voluntarily. I can actually DO something about this, and so, I did.

I deleted most social media apps from my phone. I have a pretty empty front screen right now, and it makes me happy. The only social media apps I kept are Instagram (I need my daily photos of cute Finnish Lapphunds, Boston Terriers, the occasional little human), and Goodreads (because I don’t actually follow anyone on there, and I like it for book recommendations!). That’s it. Not that I had many Social media apps on my phone to begin with. Facebook and Twitter are gone. I can’t check in and snoop into other’s lives whenever I want now. I actually have to log in to both sites on an actual computer. Which means I am limited to work & home. I will generally keep a tab open at work so I can check in once in a while when I need a little break. At home, I have become less and less inclined to even open up my laptop when I get home from work. I putter around online on the weekends. But other than that? Nothing.

So my phone is decluttered (I am very OCD about what I have on my phone, and where I have it) and my mind is slightly less cluttered as well because of this.

And how has it been going? The first morning I left for work without these apps on my phone (July 29) it felt…strange. I didn’t miss browsing the feeds so much as I sort of felt like I left the house without putting on my pants. I could play my games, and browse my one news app. I closed my eyes and snoozed on my way into town. I didn’t log into either site until I was at work for a couple of hours. When I did check in, I realized that not much had changed since the day before. I wasn’t missing anything.

That’s just it – you don’t miss anything. The same people will post the same things over and over. Even I do it. I post photos of my dogs in my sleep, I do it so often. Facebook won’t even show you the same stuff from one device to another. You can refresh your page and get completely different stories, even if you ask for Most Recent over Most Popular.

I wasn’t missing anything and my brain was a tiny bit quieter. Brilliant!

I’m not quite a week into having a social media-free phone and I haven’t missed them all that much. The only time I have missed them are on my insomnia nights. I don’t feel like going all the way downstairs to fire up my laptop, so I miss absentmindedly scrolling through other peoples’ lives to try and zone back out. Granted, it’s likely way more helpful to me to NOT be browsing Facebook or Twitter in the middle of the night, when I can’t sleep. But that is really the only time I have missed most of these apps. Even Buzzfeed and Imgur. Those two apps (and sites) can make hours of your life vanish.

So I have stepped back from socializing online for a while. Will I put these bad boys back on my phone one day? Maybe. Who knows. Probably. I’m not really thinking of that right now. I’m more focused on helping myself through a rough patch and making sure I am healthy for the future. So for now, these apps stay off my phone. I’m not removing social media from my life completely, I am just limiting the hold it wants to have over me.

I am even ready to face the onslaught of comments about this post from people who will boast they do not let social media run their lives, and that smart phones are dumb, and so on. But I’ll only see those when I choose to log in to one of those sites, because I won’t be reading them on my phone. 😉

Try it. Declutter your mind and phone. It’s as easy as hitting delete!

be proud of you

One thing that always seems to send me over the edge into CATSMASH! mode is when someone belittles another person’s, well, anything. There’s a lot of this in the online world. Having a screen between you and another person adds a sort of shield, where you feel safer saying things you would probably never, ever say to that person’s face.

I have been doing a lot of thinking lately, what with the sleepless nights and all that’s going on in my head, and I have also  been having lots of interesting conversations with people over the last few months. I feel like I need to remind the world, or my small corner of it, that you should be proud of YOU.

Everyone has their own journey. Some journeys are easier than others. Some have it rough. But if you’re sitting here, reading this right now? Congratulations! You’ve made it. You’ve survived! You might be going through some awful shit right now, but you’ve made it this far, and that I think is worthy of pride.

I’m not saying I’m not guilty of judging others. I’m not perfect. But I try very hard to stop myself from thinking that thought and think, “well, for them, that is obviously an accomplishment and it should be celebrated.” It’s not always easy, sometimes you get lost in thinking, “Hey, I have it way worse and I do so much more that that!” But everyone is different. You can’t possibly look at two people, with completely different lives and compare them. You can’t. It’s not fair.

I look at people who have children and I think, “holy hell, I could NEVER do that!” because they don’t sleep, they look after one – or many more! – children, and they STILL manage to get through the day like everyone else. They work, they stay at home and watch children (that itself is EXHAUSTING), they cook, they clean, they do everything else that I do, but they have the added challenge of parenting at the same time. Homework? I was so happy when that left my life after school. The thought of having to help someone with homework now just sends chills of terror down my spine. Nope. No way. No thank you.

But then again, parents can be guilty of comparing their lives to those of people without children. Just because I am not looking after a tiny human, doesn’t mean I don’t have my own challenges. It doesn’t make it better or worse, it just means we all have burdens to carry and issues to resolve and it’s OK. It’s what makes us human.

If you’re proud of your accomplishments, then BE proud. Share those moments you’re so proud of with others. More often than not, you’re inspiring the people who are reading about them. Don’t let one cranky, jealous, comment make you hide those parts of yourself. If you’re thrilled you managed to run 8km, or made an amazing (to you) meal – SHARE IT. These are important things to embrace. You’re not fishing for compliments, you’re just PROUD that you accomplished whatever task it was that to you was a challenge.

And don’t reply to other people’s accomplishments with things like, “Well, I ran 10km and it was even harder!” or, “How could you even eat that? Don’t you know how unhealthy that is, you should…blah blah” Just don’t.

Allow people their space online to be proud of who they are.

Respect the journey your life has been on to this point. It’s made you who you are. Try not to fall prey to jealousy when you see someone post something that makes you feel like you’ll never reach that goal.

Stop worrying about other people’s lives and be proud of the one YOU are living right now. You’ve fought battles, you have your scars, you have your good moments and your bad ones. Whatever age you are, or whatever point in life you’re at right now, it means you’ve accomplished something. You made it to today.

Be proud of your good hair day. Be proud of your home (be it big, small, crowded, sparse). Be proud of your family, and friends. Be proud of the obstacles you’ve overcome to get to this point in life.

Respect the journey you’ve been on, and be proud of yourself. Don’t let anyone ever take that from you. Don’t second-guess. Just ignore those who are jealous, or try to cut you down to make themselves feel better about life. Those people do not matter. You matter. And you will always matter to someone, even if you feel that you don’t.  Embrace the uniqueness that is you because that’s what makes us all special.