Monday, September 30, 2013

Reading Material: 1 Month Down

Last month, I posted about a list of the books I want to read this next year. Even then, I decided the best way to hold myself accountable would be to make sure I blogged my progress. I thought about how often I would want to update, and decided on once a month. Yesterday marked month one, and I'm disappointed with how much I didn't read. 

So this is what I read this month. in the process of reading:
1. The Moon and More by Sarah Dessen
I have read all of Sarah Dessen's books, so I know her style. While I can't say this one was my favorite (that goes to Along for the Ride), it wasn't bad. I have to agree with some of the reviews I saw on goodreads, though: the last 20 pages were better than most of the book. I don't think I'll read this again unless I'm in a Sarah Dessen mood, which happens about one a year.
2. Love Does by Bob Goff
I saw a lot about this book. When I bought it at Target last month, the girl behind me in line even commented that she had heard a lot about it. As you can see on goodreads, I'm only 24 pages into it, but I'm loving it. I think this will be a quick read. Lots of short chapters, which makes it feel doable. I know this will be a book I'll read over and over.
3. The Host by Stephenie Meyer
I love this book. I read it for the first time in 8th grade and again in March right before the movie came out (and after I met her + two of the cast members, which you can read about here). Saturday I got the urge to read it again, but I'm not very far yet. I don't expect to speed through it, though, so it may be on this list next month as well. If you've thought about reading this or watching the movie but decided not to because the author of Twilight wrote it: do it. It really, really rocks. I promise. It's nothing like Twilight. I mean, there's a love triangle (er, square), but it's not focused on that. It's definitely a big book, but well worth the read. 

- rl

Reading Material

Monday, September 16, 2013

Cougar Football

How cute are they?!
(photo by my mom or dad)

A few Fridays ago, the little sister was performing at halftime with the band, so we made a night of it: Chicken Express included. 

- rl

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

License to Think

I'm not sure where that title came from, but it's relative, I guess. This post doesn't have one real subject, just a jumble of things to share.

1: Sam. I think he's doing well. Actually, I'm concerned about the brown tips of his...leaves? is that what they are? My mom says it's fine, though, so I'm not going to argue that. I tried to find another plant this weekend, but couldn't find any that I knew for sure were indoors AND didn't need to be repotted. Apparently repotted is not a word. Obviously I do not care.

2: Am I the only one who has very weird thoughts? Ex: we pay a ton of people a ton of money to entertain us. By watching TV, movies, etc. we encourage people to dedicate their lives to doing things that bring us happiness. I don't see it as a problem, necessarily, but I think it's weird.

3: Since I'm going to be here a while, I knew I had to get my license. So we've been working on that. We were under the impression that I needed to read the driver's handbook, take the permit test, learn to drive/take a six hour online course, then go take the driving test. Yesterday morning, my dad and I made the trek over to the DPS office, waited in line for an hour, then were informed that we're wrong. I have to take the online course, then I can either get my license, or get a permit so I can legally learn to drive. Awesome. Thanks. Also, your website sucks. So then, while my dad worked up at the church, I sat in his office and started the course. I finished 41% yesterday, and I will hopefully finish the rest today. I'm doing it through this website, and so far I don't hate it too much. It involves lots of videos, which makes it helpful to see what kinds of turns are legal/illegal. The videos only suck when they're 12 minutes long, you answer one question about the percentage of crashes that happen in your age group, then, because you got it wrong, you have to watch the whole video over again. Yes, really.

So now I'm off to cocoon myself in my quilt (like usual) and finish up this course. Once I finish, the certificate should arrive within a few days, and then I can go get my license. (I am not excited. At all.)

- rl

Friday, September 06, 2013

My Boy

A great tragedy has occurred: I have not introduced my dog. Well, looking back through my posts, he did appear here, but he has not had a proper introduction like Sam did. So, without further ado,

Meet Mr. Bojangles! The back story on him is this: after my older sister moved out in 2010, her roommate wanted a dog. My sister agreed, then but she somehow ended up actually picking which dog they got. She had always wanted a cat named Mr. Bojangles, but when they saw a dog with that name online, they decided to get him. They kept him for about three weeks, but, as most beagles do, he had separation anxiety. Saying it like that makes it sound very dramatic, but it's just something to deal with. He would whine and have accidents and disturb the neighbor, so my sister and her roommate had to decide whether to pay to keep him at their apartment complex, or take him back to the pound where they would kill him. My sister told my mom this, who told my dad, who decided that we would take him in. Yay!

For a good couple months after we got him, he would whine when my mom would take my little sister and I to school, so she would take him in the car with her. He even whined when I would get out of the car. Needless to say, he and I have been friends from the start. One of the first nights he was here he slept outside my door, then he's been in my room ever since. He usually sleeps on the ground by my bed, but in the winter he'll sometimes get on my bed, which has made for some good pictures. He never stays on there the whole night, though, because he stretches out way too much. When I don't stay the night at home, he sleeps in my parent's closet, but they hate that because he snores. Either his snoring has been less frequent recently, or I have gotten so used to it that I don't even notice it anymore.

He can be really annoying, though. He goes through phases where he just has a ton of accidents, which my mom cleans up 99% of the time (pretty cool woman, right?). Besides that, though, he's a very chill dog. He has certain places in the house that he'll rotate between hanging out at. Not that you really care about my dog's sleeping habits, but they're fascinating. In the summer days, he'll sleep on tile to keep warm. If we're spread out in a couple different rooms, he'll position himself so he can see as many of us as possible. He barks at the sound of a doorbell, which we first discovered during a mattress commercial. We like to distract him while another person goes to knock on the door, because then his fur gets all fluffed up and he huffs. (I don't think he likes that very much.)  He loves to beg for food (especially pizza).

He's a good dog. We love him. He loves us...except for when we wait even a second past dinner time. He loves his food!

- rl

Wednesday, September 04, 2013

Picnic Quilt from Nana

Last night, a couple who are good family friends (we even call her Nana!) stopped by as they passed through town. We hadn't seen them for a couple months, so it was nice to catch up a little bit, and hopefully we'll be able to hang out for a longer period of time when they pass through again in a couple of weeks.

One of the reasons they stopped by our house, though, was to bring me a graduation gift! My Nana made this quilt for me! It's a picnic blanket quilt, so hopefully a year from now I will be able to take it out to Millennium Park in Chicago for a picnic with people from school. It's a big wish, but you never know. 

First, I love all the food! Even just looking at the pictures makes me hungry! Second, look at all those cute ants! They're not only the border, but most of the back and she had them quilted in! We joked that when I do take it out I won't be able to tell if there are ants on the quilt or if it's just the ones on the pattern. (; Third, this thing is huge! It's gotta be at least 6'x6'! This is my first quilt I've ever had, so I love that it's a big one! 

And, of course, my favorite part is knowing that it was a labor of love. She told me that she spent hours the last few days hand sewing the binding. How awesome is that? I feel so blessed to have her in my life, even if they live in Arizona now instead of across town. That's just motivation, though, to go visit them one of these days. (:

- rl

Tuesday, September 03, 2013

Meet Sam

I got a plant! Which, of course, you know because you just scrolled through some pictures of it. Anyway! I'm pretty excited about it.

I have wanted fish for a few months now, but then I did some "research" (aka googling on my phone when I should be sleeping) and found that it would take more thought than just getting a fish & feeding it daily; I would need to find just the right fish, then the right sized tank for that fish, then the food, and of course clean it out every now and then. So. I decided against that. I'm sure I can find an app that will bring me that kind of happiness instead - much cheaper.

So then I decided that I wanted a plant. A succulent, to be exact, because I've seen way too many pictures on tumblr to ignore their beauty. Then this weekend, I wanted to buy something. That's not an urge I have often - I hate money - but I kept thinking about what to get. Then we went to WalMart. And I decided to wander off on my own and search for a plant. I almost ended up with a different kind, but this one was already potted and my mom was ready to go so I kept it.

When we got home, I set it on my nightstand and had a photo shoot with it. I love it. It's a Jade succulent. The specs on the plant thingy (pictured) are different than the ones I found online, so I need to some more research so I can know a bit more about how many hours in the sun, how often to water it, etc. Thankfully, though, my mom used to be a huge plant nerd (that's a compliment! It was her major in college!), so I'll be depending on her for plant advice.

And, yes, I named it Sam as in Sam Winchester from Supernatural. So you better believe I have plans to get a Dean and Castiel too. I am currently very obsessed with this show. I started it a few weeks ago and am currently on season four. I have watched countless panels with the cast.

- rl

(p.s. You can view my favorite videos from August 2013 here. There were a lot this month. I find it funny how you can even see how I went from normal "oh, I like this song" to SPN fan mode. Whoops!)