Oh! A List!

Here are some things going on right now:

  • As mentioned in the previous post, I went to the Gals Guide Summit.  It was really good!  Very fun and informative.  Well organized, and some great swag! Seriously, free Dove deodorant? um, yes.  Also: pizza, chocolates, cookies, cupcakes, and vitamin water!  Plus a lot more.  Jenn’s review (in that last link) covers more of it.  She was there and I was pleasantly surprised to see Rabbit Write (aka Rachel W.) there!
  • I had an interview for a job on Thursday.  It went well, and the store owner wants me to meet with the manager (happening on Wednesday).  I believe the phrase she used was “If you’re serious about this job, you should schedule a meeting with the L. Ave store manager.”  Um. YES.
  • I got to go to Shedd for free.  I won tickets to the aquarium and to see their new Oceaniarum show, Fantasea.  3 hours of fishes.  Mennogirl and jrosei came after work to join me for the show.  It was a little over the top for me, but I know some young girls who would probably LOVE it.  We then ate at Uber Burger, and walked around downtown for a while.
  • The kittens have started waking me up early again.  It’s either by walking on my face or by dive bombing the bed from the top of the window.  They’re either preparing me for a new schedule I don’t know about yet or they’re punishing me for buying crappy food.
  • I’ve been hanging out and talking with someone I haven’t seen in a while.  And have thoroughly been enjoying it.
  • Once I find out about this job, good or bad, I’m going to take a few days and go visit my dad, stepmom and sisters.

a case of the…

It feels like my self-esteem has been up and down lately.  Most days it’s up.  I generally feel pretty awesome about myself, which is kind of a cool feeling.

But sometimes it’s just down.  There’s not one thing that I don’t feel happy with, but just a general, overall not so great feeling.  Not having something to pin down this negative feeling, it makes things a little challenging.  It’s harder to give yourself a pep talk when you can’t figure out what you’re not happy with or about.

I wouldn’t say that I’m depressed.  At least not currently.  And hopefully not again any time soon.  But I know that the next week, and possibly the whole month will be hard.  I’ll get through it though.  I’ve got a great support network of family, friends, kittens, and cupcakes.

(I’ve already had two cupcakes today… and the kittens have been providing some great entertainment this evening.)

quick lessons from this weekend:

  • more of my friends need to come and stay in Chicago, with me, forever.
  • I don’t see Chrissy enough (see above)
  • I need to quit doubting myself
  • make sure you know how long your house guests are staying
  • my brother’s friends really know nothing about me
  • if I say you can use my desktop, that does not give you permission to use my netbook. (seriously, I get a little OCD about my tabs and settings.)
  • I have no tolerance for racism (or ignorant stereotypes)
  • I really don’t being around homophobes
  • my kittens are very diligent about letting me know we’re out of food
  • sometimes, you just need to take your shoes off and walk through the water…

itty bitty kitty update

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My kittens got fixed this week.  I’ll have more about that later.  But yeah… my kittens had an interesting couple days since then.  Little kitties got stoned off their meds.  They seem to be doing well though.

death of a sofa

Last night I decided that I had enough.  It was time for me to end my nearly two-year relationship with my studio sofa.

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We have gone through a lot in our relatively short time together.  This was my bed in my first apartment, a small studio I barely left.  It was, and still is, surprisingly comfortable though the cushions have thinned out a bit.  I don’t believe it was designed for continual/daily use as a bed, but it certainly worked for me.  It also wasn’t designed for more than one person, but you can actually fit two people.

It survived the move to the Northern Territories really well.  And since I had a proper bedroom (practically the size of my old studio too), I didn’t need to use it as a bed anymore.  So it found a home in the living room along with Bec’s sleeper-sofa, and I found a foam mattress to put on my floor.  (And my dad’s 3-inch memory foam topper found it’s way to my room as well… He thinks I’m “borrowing” it; I say “house warming gift”.)

At the new place, it pretty much lived a normal sofa life.  I lounged on it in all manner of positions, the cats climbed around on it and occasionally fell off the arms, and a few guests crashed on it.  One day, however, while trying to herd the kittens to take them to the vet, we had a mishap.  One of the slats was broken in a (failed) attempt to grab one of my precious furballs.  It wasn’t cracked all the way through, but it was still weakened by the accident.  My lovely roommate Bec graciously attempted to fix it by bracing it with a large piece of wood.  This didn’t work.  One week before my move to the Midlands of Lakeview, one of my curious, adorable, and destructive kittens decided to spill a whole mug of mint tea on my dear sofa.  During my melodramatic rampage of throwing cushions around the room, I discovered that our failed attempts at bracing the slats had actually broken another slat, cracking and splitting worse than the first one.  In my less than mature state, I called my mother and unleashed all my frustrations at my sofa and my desire to heave it off the back porch to the cement below.  My mother in all her wisdom told me to stop being idiotic and that I’d miss my couch once it was gone.

My sofa was stripped of it’s tea-covered cushions and made the move with me.  The covers had been washed once before, after Bec’s cat Lucyfur decided to mistake it for her litterbox.  That resulted in a very snug fit, but it worked.  After getting to the new place, and doing a bit of laundry (which still not yet finished), last night I attempt to refit my cushions back into their covers.  The pillows were fine, though I remember them being more squareish than rectangle… The main cushion cover, however, refused to fit.  In a final effort to zip the cushions in place, the cover exploded completely dislocating the zipper.

The cushion is all disfigured and lumpy now as it sits on the frame.  I have a fleece blanket covering on of the arm cushions to keep the batting from being destroyed (further) by myself and the kittens.  I do indeed own another over, an off-white one that it originally came in.  However, with all that I’ve gone through with this sofa, I’m not sure how much more it will survive.  Given the kittens penchant for spilling things, I’m sure that going with the white cover is a terrible idea.  So now, I’m left with few options with my intended “investment” piece.  I can just deal with it and see what else happens to it, or I can list it on craigslist and hope it finds a better home.  The latter option would indeed leave me sofaless, and ultimate seatless in my new living room (other than a very small folding chair I’ve been using for a desk chair).  But I have found another sofa that folds out into a two-person bed that I like.  Unfortunately it’s about $325 ($115 less than I paid originally for my studio sofa and additional cover).  Now, $325 isn’t bad for a couch, even just a two-seater.  But given all the other purchases I’m putting into this new place, it’s adding up.  That’s why I’m not going to rush my decision of my sofa’s fate just yet.  I’ll live with my dear seating friend for just a bit longer, and try to decide whether or not I can part with it.

send blankets!

Well, I officially have a new address now.
And no cooking gas and very little groceries. (Even fewer that don’t require a stove or some other ingredient that I don’t currently have.)

However, I am back in the Second City again… in the Midlands of Lakeview.  It was a good pick too.  I’m impressed with myself — choosing a prime place without really thinking about it or making much effort.  All the stores and shops and food I could want are all within easy walking distance.  There’s even a video game store there too.  (Guess who will be stopping by to check out the nerdy boys AND get new games…)  Plus, though I’m not near the train (or the lake) any more — a first since moving to the area — I am near buses… and the train is only a 15 minute walk.  But I can make it to the Northern Territories easily, and take a 30 minute bus ride down to the Southern Lands of Pilsen… No transfers.  Getting over to Wicker Park will be nice too.  Meaning I can stay out a bit later with my bandmates.

Now.  The place is small.  But it’s just me and the kittens.  And though I own a lot of crap (which I won’t get rid of), it pretty much all fits.  Granted, I’m not finished unpacking, and I still have stuff to go through at the old place.

There’s really only a few things I’d like to change…

1) A way to kitty-proof the doors; both to the outside door and to the laundry room (which is practically in-unit and free)… I’m just worried one of the girls will get outside.. or into the laundry room and I won’t be able to coax her back into my place…

2) A bedroom door.  Yeah I live alone, so it’s not necessary… and I will get a curtain soon… but well, there might be times when cute little kitten’s interruptions aren’t wanted…

3) Heat!  My place is pretty chilly right now.  Mainly that’s because in the winter I’d be relying on the pipes from the upstairs radiators (my landlord’s) and an electric heater… I’m also coming from a freakishly warm apartment in which I had the windows open practically all winter.  But until I get a bedwarmer (ie: boyfriend), I’ll be sticking to my large collection of blankets and sleeping in clothes.

I would also add cooking gas, as metioned above.  But apparently it’s just a pilot light — my landlord just emailed me.  So hopefully tonight I can actually make some hot tea… and cook some food…

Anyway.  The place is coming a long.  I’ve got Angel to thank for that… He painted it for me… and we’re going to talk about some custom art/murals.. But depending on the heat issue, I might only be there for 6 months and mirgate to another apartment that’s a bit warmer… and hopefully in the same area.
I also need to thank my amazingly awesome friends who moved all my crap.  Robert (one of my bandmates; tuba) really conducted the whole thing.  If it wasn’t for him, and Jason B., I would have been screwed.  Dani saved me by driving me to and from U-Haul… And I had the help of Becca and jrosei for all of it too.  jrosei’s youngest sister helped as well (so I’ve had both of her sisters helping me with a move), as did Weiss and Angel who showed up for the last bit.  Bec and jrosei brought the kittens over the next night.. in the rain.. with their freshly cleaned litter box… (THANKS!)

A last little brag of what I’ve got:
New place all to myself (bedroom door or not), awesome paint job, free cable, free internet, free laundry, all utilities but gas, a kickass neighborhood, and a pretty decent landlord.  … Win.

send tissue.

I got sick.

It probably came on from exhaustion, a freakishly busy work week, and being too close to other sickos…

I am getting better, today I could actually talk… however, I’ve got that whole packing and moving thing to do… so I might be a bit distracted or absent until next week, once I’m settled in the new apartment.

I tend to do well with Twitter still though, so for more regular updates you can follow my tweets.

Between the packing, being sick, and the kittens’ destructive curiosity… let’s just say I seriously cannot wait until next week.

The Clip Post of Awesomeness: or Wench's 6 month anniversary.

So 6 months ago I decided I didn’t have enough blogs in my life and decided to start a new one where I rambled on about how my Wednesday sucked…  At that point the blog was called “Post Collegiate Lessons” off of a category I had from another blog…  Within a week or so, I decided that the title also sucked and switched it to “Hopelessly Yours…” which seemed to fit.  I once had a radio show with the same name, and that went over fairly well.  But things didn’t feel quite right.

And thus, pink dinos and all, Wench was born and became this lovely, pink blog before you.

What’s impressed me the most is the global readership.

I’ve had visitors from 23 different countries (yes, including the US).  I wish I could write to you all in your own language, but I’m not all that gifted.  As some readers could probably point out, for someone who’s wanting to earn an MFA in writing, I still have issues with English and grammar.

Anyway… Here’s a list of countries of my international readers (in no particular order):
South Africa, China, Taiwan, Singapore, Australia, UK, Canada, Ireland, Argentina, France, Finland, Sweden, the Netherlands, India, Germany, Belgium, Portugal, Malaysia, Italy, Ukraine, Czech Republic, New Zealand, and yes, the United States.
Thanks a lot for visiting and reading!!

Anyway, in 6 months you probably seen me through at least 5-7 crushes, read way too about my lack of relationships, (hopefully) enjoyed some kitten antics with me, witnessed history with Obama, I informed you about concerts, shared videos, and talked about nerdy-love and even my underwear….

And given the upcoming changes in my life, plus the fact that I’ll probably always be infatuated with at least one boy… there’s only more craziness and nerdy-love to come…

Thanks for my first 6 months here at Wench.  It’s been awesome.  I’ve been awesome.  And hell, you’ve been awesome too.

getting schooled at home

Things that I have learned or relearned/remembered, either about myself or just in general, while spending this week at my father’s…

  • only packing laundry leaves for an interesting selection of clothes; in my case, just a handful of tshirts and jeans, only one nice top, and a whole lot of socks and underwear.
  • sleeping in the schoolroom is nice because it has doors (privacy), but it also means I have to be up and have my mattress out of the room before home school starts for my sisters…
  • my skills in zoning out/ignoring are still strong, with the volume and energy of my sisters, this has been nice at times
  • I’m surprised I’m not more tired than I am, given that I’ve been staying up until after 1 or 2a most nights and waking up at 8:30a every morning.
  • variety is not really a large part of my family’s diet, or at least their pantry…
  • it’s harder to take a nap without at least one kitten
  • I haven’t listened to my iPod (and subsequently any of my music) since early saturday morning. This mildly bothers me, but I have yet to go fetch my iPod out of my purse…
  • apparently there are a lot of forms and paperwork related to taking a leave from work
  • I’m actually a lot stronger than I allow myself to believe and actually had the answers I needed in regards to resolving (or working to resolve) my workplace stress (which is why I’m not currently at work)
  • I tend to lie to myself and let myself think there is more hope for a relationship when it comes to men I’m interested in than there probably is…
  • That said, I do know and realize that I am a damn good catch, and that someone will see that and want to be a part of my awesomeness
  • I still really enjoy going through, reading and writing HTML, CSS, and PHP… and am impressed in my ability to troubleshoot various issues
  • Wood burning stoves are ridiculously hot and you shouldn’t (accidentally) brush your arm against them.

reflections on a year, looking back at 2008

Well, seeing as it’s December 31st, it seems like a good time to look back on this last year — something I’ll do again at the Chinese New Years, when the Year of the Rat (aka my year) ends.

2008 definitely hasn’t been terrible, but I can’t say it’s been the best year either. But overall, I’ll be leaving this year with only a few ill feelings.

For one thing, I’ve held my job for about 13 months now. So this has been my first full year of no schooling, replacing it instead with full time work. It’s had it’s ups and downs, and frankly I plan on leaving this position (if not the university) in 2009. I’m well appreciated, have amazing benefits, and paid well… but I can’t deal with the tedious data entry and just not utilizing my skills. I do much better when I’m organizing, planning, arranging and managing… I’m hoping grad school will give me a good out. Otherwise I’ll be starting my job search around the time I move.

2008 also included a move up to the Northern Territories, in which I went from a small studio by myself to a two bedroom with a roommate and three cats and friends living right upstairs (and also down the alley). This living situation has definitely been healthier for me, as I was becoming a mildly depressed recluse in my studio. However, this living situation has also been challenging as well. And even though I’m ready to get into a different apartment, I’ll miss living with the girls. Late night giggling and jokes that only the 5 of us would ever get — and meals that should have been video taped…

There have been a lot of new additions in my life this past year… A major one would be my new stepmom, Cynthia. I didn’t even know dad was seeing someone until he was thinking about proposing. Granted, things moved quickly — they started talking in January, engaged by July and married in September. She’s a great woman though.

The kittens are another new addition this year. Tuija and Kaija have definitely been a joy, a bundle of neurotic joy. Not only do they preform some spectacular aerial acrobatics and flips, but they’re little purr machines and cuddle monsters. Though they had a rough start with tapeworm and then ringworm, they’re doing great now.

This year I’ve also done a decent amount of shopping… I have yet to count how many shoes I’ve gotten, but I know there’s a lot. And with the new job, I got new clothes… and some not-for-work clothes too. Other big(ish) purchases also include my Nintendo DS and my Wii. Even though I really need to start saving my funds, I don’t really think I’ve gone overboard with my spending.

Unfortunately this year, being on my own, has meant that I have to cover my medical bills myself. I did pretty well for the first part of the year. Then it was back problems, my vertigo acting up again, anxiety problems, and now my wrist. Nothing too major, though I did go through all of my sick days pretty fast. But I feel like I’m getting better overall — and well, no ER visits other than for my wrist, so that’s good.

Another big negative for this year would probably be a drunken misadventure from this summer. Not my greatest moment. I had never been that drunk before, and haven’t since. I was in a situation that I couldn’t control. I knew it was a situation that I shouldn’t be in, but I couldn’t vocalize it. Luckily, despite a lot of regret, I wasn’t stuck with the other possible consequences.

Also in regards to relationships, this has been another year of singleness. There have been a couple dates, but nothing beyond that. I’m generally okay with it. However, as I know I’ve mentioned before, it’d be nice to have a steady make out partner, and well, just someone to connect with. I’m still having fun and just enjoying life, and hopefully someone will see that and want to be a part of that too.

Anyway. One great thing from this year has been all of the new friends that I’ve made this year. In general I’ve got an amazing group of friends, and things are only getting better. I’ve gotten to know some great new people, and gotten to know other people a lot better. From some crazy band nerds, the girls at work, the group in the Southern Lands of Pilsen, to a long-haired Catholic, a tall-skinny linguist with amazing cats and his bread-eating roommate… There’s even more people, but they’re harder to force into little groups. I’m looking forward to meeting and getting to know more people this next year. (And yes, a few of them might be because I have some sort of interest in them..)

Anyway. 2008 has been interesting. And even though Wench has only been around for the last part of it, it’s definitely been an enjoyable part of this year.
I’m not one for making New Years resolutions, so I’m going into 2009 blindly.
I don’t think I’ll be welcoming in the New Year with a kiss, since I don’t currently have plans for tonight, but just hoping for the best and enjoying what comes along.