Wednesday, February 14, 2024

Things I've been meaning to tell you 2.14.2024

Look who's back, back again...

1. Items of note from last weekend: It is amazing how much lighter and happier I feel after a few hours spent with a BFF. Thanks to Laura for driving down to visit for lunch...where I sat directly across a man I filed against in small claims court for fucking insane window shenanigans. A man who told me he was dying the last time I spoke to him. Surprise! He survived. LOL. And thanks to MFD for driving down to get the dogs and fill up my tires so I could run around doing some work shit Sunday. I finally went to a coffee shop I've been meaning to go to - Jessie's of Linwood - and got a smashing red velvet muffin. I saw Buddakan with her skirt on for the Lunar New Year. Your woman was invited to a lacrosse tailgate by literal children. Despite having a face that discourages interaction, I continue to be invited to interact. The tie dye flower my brother got me was still alive in the fridge in Philly weeks later. These buffalo chicken sliders from Bluff City Grub were super easy and delicious. Shittah finally made it onto the corner ladder shelf. 
2. Okay what the hell. Who has seen this? This is fucking insane.

3. Shore side tables I picked up at a thrift store in November are in progress. The middle shelf is for books, I swoon over these tables. I've found three over the past year. Both of these use All in One paint in Thistle as a base coat. The sherbert orange one is that mixed withModern Masters Metallic paint in burnt orange and the other is Modern Masters Metallic paint in teal.I leaned into mixing with the orange to soften the color up and not so much with the teal, because that metallic was the color I wanted. 

4. I do not like or celebrate Valentine's Day, but I love love in all of its forms. If you need to hear any of these from someone today and haven't: I love you. You being out here alive and kicking matters in this world. You complete you. You can buy yourself flowers. Along with picking up a divine dessert, giving someone who deserves it the middle finger is a cheap way to treat yo'self.

5. Related, from my soapbox: There is no reward in this life for putting every living thing before yourself or turning yourself inside out for someone else, whether that person is a love interest, child, friend, parent, sibling, whoever. Take care of you, then everyone else. Many women in particular need to read this to understand it, not read to gloss over the words. There is no award for putting yourself last. There is no award for depleting yourself to where you are a puddle on the couch. There is no award for setting yourself on fire to keep someone else warm. This applies to romantic love, children, family, friends, etc etc. Take care of you, then everyone else. 

6. Slowly but surely making changes in Philly. I have too many belongings for someone who is rarely there, so every time I go home, I pare down. I've gotten rid of a decent amount of stuff over the past few months but am literally just scratching the surface. We've got a new roomate in Philly - Jared, who is basically family to us, moved in last month, so I cleared out a bunch of shit in the bedroom he's in and while I was at it I went through the closet in my office where old luggage and Halloween costumes go to die. The shit pit room in the basement is allegedly being turned into usable space, cleared out by MFD. Step one of that was putting Shittah's bathroom behind closed doors. This room has always been the recipient of shit people unload from cars and forget about, or where we put things we need to figure out what to do with. For a minute it was a bedroom for my mother in law, then an office for me, and I want that office back but we're in negotiations over that right now.

7. A few weeks ago Laura called me the Menopause Captain and I humbly accept this title. We can speak about perimenopause and menopause openly and not sotto vocce like they're taboo topics. Periods too. Get comfortable being uncomfortable if you talk about these things in a whisper behind a hand because they impact the daily operating lives of over half of the global population and this shit is uncomfortable and maddening enough without having to put a cherry on the top of a shit sundae to ease others around you.

8. What I also struggle with every day and appreciate the words of Zoe Lister-Jones on: the idea that we cannot hold space for both peoples. We can. Actually, fuck can. We must. 

9. I don't want to hear about more mass shootings because I don't want there to be any more fucking mass shootings. Nothing more American than a mass shooting on the day of the Super Bowl parade, coinciding with the anniversary of two previous mass shootings that did not rock the country enough for any tangible action to be taken. It's a goddamn fucking disgrace. 

10. The beach recently. Lots of heavy skies, which I don't mind. Not a lot of sea glass, but I found four pieces yesterday. That's how it goes. Just me and Ben down here from Monday night to tomorrow night.

We leave for vacation Sunday. I am absolutely unprepared to do so, and am trying to get right with it. I'll probably do like I did when we were in Europe, and do an IG feed post a day and a reel. That was a good way for me to remember our trip myself. If you want to follow along, you can find me on Instagram here. MFD is here and hopefully he doesn't lose his phone like he did the second he stepped off the plane in Switzerland this summer.  

Wednesday, February 7, 2024

Things I've been meaning to tell you 2.7.2024

For years I was blogging four to five times a week, then three, then committing to still documenting weekends and monthly reads, then a substack post here and there, then stopping even the weekends and monthly reads the weekend after Thanksgiving…and I stopped with no regrets. I didn't want to sit at my computer any longer than necessary. I didn't feel like I had the capacity for it. Since then it’s been like having all the things I shared regularly for so long bottling up in my brain causing a traffic jam. I never thought not putting a blog out would add to my mental load instead of subtract from it, but that's what happened. I am a creature of habit and continued adding any little unimportant thought that flew through to a mental list until my brain felt like the scene in a movie where a pillow bursts and the asshole down feathers that are a PITA to clean up are everywhere.

I'm going to try for a weekly round up, which I will start immediately with no expectations and achieve with varying degrees of success. Let us begin.

1. I’m so glad Tracy Chapman is getting all her flowers for Fast Car. Now let’s do Talkin’ Bout a Revolution.

2. Then let’s actually have a revolution where the needs of actual every day people are met over the need to return profits to shareholders or fund the military industrial complex, which America does without care for how it impacts and erases actual every day people, scorches the earth, and does lasting damage to our shared humanity. Too many of us do not realize our entire lives are attributable to the luck of being born where we were born. Related: let's Make America Go Back to When Congress Produced Things Aside From Sound Bytes Again. Do nothing motherfuckers owned by corporate and/or foreign interests, the lot of them

3. White women powers, activate! Form of: the same shield around Black and Brown women - celebrity or not - we use to surround Taylor Swift. This isn’t a dig on TS, it’s a reminder to us white ladies that white supremacy AND patriarchy are not the shark, they are the water we swim in. And a lot of the time, us white ladies are the lifeguards who focus so hard on some swimmers that we’re just letting non-white women drown. Plenty of Black women have more to say on this than me, and plenty of white women are slamming the door on it because they are sick of the beating Taylor Swift has taken because the NFL shows her on the screen which, ladies, I’m with you. Two things can be true at once. If you read shit like this and get defensive, stop and discuss with yourself. I immediately stop and ask why I’m getting defensive. And as a rule and lifelong commitment to my authentic self, I am ruthlessly honest with my answers. It is okay to change your thought process or to have a realization that sparks a change in how you see the world at any time. If you find yourself stuck, you might be dead.

4. Some of you right now: Back on her bullshit, why did I start reading this

5. I spent two hours on a combo of live chat and phone chat with the bastard Xfinity this morning to lower our shore internet only cost from $160 to $102. How the shit they justify Internet Only at $160 when it was $85 in 2020 is one of the world's greediest mysteries. The cost of utilities in general is absolutely insane globally. Also why isn't Internet fucking free. 

6. Free deodorizer for dog beds, blankets, etc: sunshine. The same thing that kept the Ingalls family from smelling like old crotches through most of the winter. Have you ever read The Long Winter as an adult? If not, recommend.

7. I'm thrilled with how  table originally purchased for $20 from ReStore turned out in Philly - this is Modern Masters Metallic Paint in Amethyst over All in One Paint in Thistle. My niece critiqued it while it was in progress, prompting an additional coat I was not going to do but she was correct. I still need to add a lacquer top coat. More metallic painting shit coming this weekend at the shore. Who knows how that will turn out, because I'll be damned if I'm letting the rest of the thistle go to waste so it will be the base for the two smaller tables I'm doing at the shore as well. Different metallic paints are going on top of that but they are not in the same color family so the end results will be a surprise to both you and me. 

8. Items of note from last weekend: Mr. Rooney's first $$$ emergency vet visit. Face time with a good friend is always comforting and fantastic. Bruce is back on his coffee bullshit. A two hour walk on a windless Sunday in February feels like an amazing dream.

9. Have I mentioned I'm putting my feet in the water every day I'm at the shore, winter included? The water's not bad, really. I need to ground myself in all seasons, and also I'm a pisces what do we expect
10. Woman who is always saying, "I rarely watch movies," has recently watched movies.

I'm coming back next week, I swear.

Wednesday, January 17, 2024

The moving mistakes you will want to avoid

There is no doubt that moving house is a stressful and often emotional process to go through.
There are lots of tasks that need to be completed, so it is inevitable that people make mistakes
when moving home (especially as people do not generally move often). It is helpful to be aware of what these common mistakes are so that you know how you can avoid them. By avoiding these common mistakes, you can simplify the moving process and increase your chances of settling quickly. Things rarely go exactly according to plan, but you will want to avoid these mistakes when moving home.

No Plan
The most common mistake that people make is not creating a plan. As mentioned, there are many tasks involved in moving home, and you do not want to leave everything until the last minute. Fortunately, you can find handy checklists online that will break down each task and tell you what needs to be completed and by when.

Not Using Professional Removal Companies
It is easy to see why people will try to move everything across themselves, but this can create a lot more work and stress than is needed. Professional removal companies can handle the loading, transport, and unloading of all of your possessions, which is the hardest part of the move. With professionals taking care of the heavy lifting, you can turn your attention to other aspects of the move. You can also save money by comparing quotes from long-distance movers online. You can get a quote from several reputable companies to find the best option for your budget while ensuring that you are using a trusted company.

No Inventory
Another common mistake is not taking an inventory. You want to make sure that all of your possessions arrive safely in the new home, so you should create a list of each item and note what box they are in - this can also make it much easier to unpack.

Rushing The Move
Many people will try to complete a move in just a few hours, but this creates a huge amount of pressure and stress. Instead, you should try to spread the move out and take your time. This can significantly reduce stress and ensure you can take time with each task. You could even take a few days to get everything done - you can always put possessions into storage if needed.

Not Establishing A Budget
Finally, you should always set a budget when moving home. There are numerous costs involved, so these can quickly add up if you do not have a figure in mind. You do not want to add financial stress on top of the stress of moving, so try to control your spending during the moving process with a bit of a buffer.

These are common mistakes that you will want to avoid when moving home. The process of moving home will always be difficult and stressful, but you can simplify the process and settle quickly when you avoid these mistakes.
This post was written with Life According to Steph readers in mind

Sunday, December 31, 2023

December 2023 Reads

Here we are at the end of the year again. I finished a book last night and likely won't start one today. 

What I read in December

Engrossing Reads
The Shark (Forgotten Files #1) by Mary Burton - I devoured this one, which is always a happy thing when you've purchased it because you got a series book from Netgalley and it is against your religion to read a second when you know there's a first. Kindle copy

The Dollmaker (Forgotten Files #2) by Mary Burton - I enjoy the characters and setting of this and the previous Forgotten Files - I would read more of them! Thanks to Netgalley for the free copy in exchange for an honest review

Face Her Fear (Detective Josie Quinn #19) by Lisa Regan - Great job by Regan while taking her series outside of a typical setting - I am not always into that but I think it worked here and serves as a good clear the air bridge for the transition of the Denton PD core team. Thanks to Netgalley and Boukouture for the free advanced copy in exchange for an honest review - since this series is a favorite, I also pre-ordered a copy! Book publishes January 30

The Weight of Water by W.A. Schwartz - Rounded up from a 3.5 - I liked this even though it was overfilled with things during the 1970s POVs that ended up superfluous to the story which might have been better spent providing more context to some of the players and depth in general in the other two timelines around Katrina and present day. Also, this is sand and not dirt on my feet which drives MFD crazy but sand doesn't bother me LOL Thanks to Netgalley for the free copy in exchange for an honest review

Passed the Time Just Fine
The Hidden Life of Cecily Larson - Started slowly and picked up around the middle. Layered and interesting with possibly like one or two extraneous plot threads that could be thinned to make the pacing better. Free copy from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review, book publishes Feb 20

Things that Cause Inappropriate Happiness by Danila Botha - I don't always read short stories, but when I do I like them to be a little on edge and these were - you can take that a number of ways and it's meant a number of ways. Thanks to Netgalley for the free advanced copy in exchange for an honest review, collection publishes April 1

The Woman in Me by Britney Spears - Sound the alarm as the woman who never listens to books has listened to a book thanks to several multi-car accidents on a rainy December Sunday returning to the shore. The book itself did not set anything on fire, but I would set the possessions of Britney's parents and sister on fire without thinking twice. These people are abusive, criminal grifters and this woman paid the price while the world watched. Michelle Williams was an excellent narrator except I was caught up on tour. My accent means tour rhymes with your. Michelle says too-or. Spotify free audible

Keep Your Friends Close by Leah Konen - A super quick read that felt a tad bit off-center? I would have liked it more I think if it was primarily Willa's POV. Thanks to Netgalley for the free advanced copy in exchange for an honest review, book publishes Feb 20

The Magic All Around by Jennifer Moorman - Nothing wrong with a little bit of magic! This didn't pick up for me until about halfway through, so something to know going in if you are not in the mindset for that. Thanks to Netgalley for the free advanced copy in exchange for an honest review, book publishes January 16

The Guest by B.A. Paris - Did I not say the last time I read one of their books that I should stop? I should have stuck. These characters are maddening. Thanks to Netgalley for the free advanced copy in exchange for an honest review - book publishes Feb 20

Not for Me

Please Tell Me by Mike Omer - Like, did Mike Omer actually write this? The writing itself was awful, the pacing was off, and the story was not good. Kindle first reads

Silent Girls (Agent Tori Hunter #1) by Roger Stelljes - A good concept. My beef with this book is mostly editorial issues, both for grammar and content. I might give another in the series a go to see if it was just poor timing for me on this one, and if I can get over using boisterously twice in the span of three pages. LOL why am I like this. Kindle book

Did Not Finish

The Seafarer's Secret by Carol Ann Collins - Netgalley, publishes January 30


What have you been reading?

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