Wednesday, June 30, 2010

This Summer's Obsession

I didn't think I'd have one this year!

J and I started watching Dr. Who, but with his new job and long hours, we could only watch a couple of episodes a night. So I started watching Torchwood. And WHOA.

Christopher Eccleston struck me as kind of goofy in the beginning, but he quickly grew on me and I loved his intensity. The fake huge smile sometimes grated, but I loved him and hated to lose him at the end of season 1.

I'd caught glimpses of David Tennant's Doctor, and thought he might be a little too goofy/geeky, but man, was I wrong. I didn't need the growth period, I loved him from episode 1.

Then season 2 came to an end, and I wasn't sure I'd be thrilled with Rose's replacement, but I love Martha a million times more than Rose! She's smarter, and more firmly brave. I HATE that she only got one season.

I had a little bit of difficulty figuring out the broadcast timeline for Dr. Who and Torchwood, but didn't think it would matter much. Then Torchwood season 1 ended, and I had to figure it out. I decided I'd plow ahead with season 2, but then Martha showed up, and I convinced J to let me fly with Dr. Who season 3, so I could catch up and keep everything in the order it was supposed to be in.

Now I'm done with DW season 3 and found out Donna is the companion in season 4, and I really hated her in the Christmas special between 2 and 3, so I'm not thrilled. I'm also sad to be losing David Tennant, but assume the new Doctor will grow on me, too.

Random thoughts on the two shows:

1. I love that heroines on these shows are not perfect, physically speaking. Rose had that caveman jaw, and Gwen has the gap in her teeth, and while Martha's gorgeous, she's hippy (which is NOT a criticism). Tosh is the exception, being absolutely gorgeous.

2. I am a complete hypocrite, because I love that the guys are all hot, from The Doctor to Captain Jack to Ianto and Owen and even Captain John.

3. Is there anything hotter than the Doctor and Jack striding along the street/devastated planet/spaceship corridor with those awesome coats?! Much more so together. Mm. Not enough of those episodes.

4. THE FACE OF BOE!!!!!!

5. I want more man-kissing, darn it.

6. I'm a little tired of Cybermen and Daleks, and I know more are coming. *sigh* The storylines accompanying them are creative and well written, but the creatures themselves weigh their episodes down.

I'm very sad that I only have 7 episodes of Torchwood left and two seasons of Dr. Who. I'm also sad that it took me so long to start watching, but the flip side of that is having them all to devour at once during the TV desert of summer.

Of course, this summer is actually not so much a desert. I have 2 episodes each of Royal Pains, Leverage, and Hot in Cleveland on the DVR, as well as 3 or 4 episodes of The Good Guys, which I may end up not watching but want to because I like Todd Stashwick. Eureka and White Collar are back soon, and I'm going to give Haven, Covert Affairs, and Rubicon a try. Geez, it's almost like the regular season!

I should cut way back on TV. I start a new job in two weeks, and my day will be something like this:

8:00 to 1:30 Work (or get ready for work, drive to work, drive from work)
1:30 to 9:00ish Family and Freelance Work (activities, meals, editing)
9:00ish to bed Fiction Writing

See? No time for TV.

I guess the best thing to do is DVR it all and watch on the weekends, but I suspect I will always be behind, especially when fall starts. Also, plunging in to Dr. Who and Torchwood is keeping me from watching all of Supernatural, beginning to end, like I've done every summer.

Another reason to cut back on TV? Books! Number Two finally handed over The Red Pyramid (Rick Riordan) and Only the Good Spy Young arrived today, so I'm reading them simultaneously. Infinity came in from the library, too. I stopped reading the Dark-Hunters books when Nick went bad, because it broke my heart too much, but this book is The Nick Chronicles, so I had to check it out. To top it off, I'll be getting Sizzling Sixteen (Evanovich) on Friday. Last year my FIL and SIL and I all bought Finger Lickin' Fifteen, so I figure it's okay that we share this year's release. :) That's on top of the books on my Kindle and bookshelf! Every time I finish a book, it's an agony of indecision picking the next one. It often ends up being the most recent arrival, which means stuff I've really been looking forward to gets older and older.

*sigh* I really just need to live a life of leisure. But don't we all? :)

Friday, June 25, 2010


Check out today's Supernatural Sisters where Theresa Meyers talks about blending bad boys, westerns, and Supernatural/supernatural into steampunk!

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

NPH and Dryers

I dreamed this morning that Neil Patrick Harris was trying to sell me a dryer at Montgomery Ward.

It was really Neil Patrick Harris, too, not some appliance sales guy who looked like him. I was surprised, of course, I didn't think he'd need to have a job like that, but then, I wouldn't think Aldis Hodge needed a Taco Bell commercial, either.

Anyway. He was really sweet and helpful and eager to sell me the dryer I really wanted but then I found out it was $1300 and I can't afford that. So I never bought a dryer, but I did get to hang out with NPH outside the job because he was lonely and friendly and that's always my fantasy with celebrities I like--that we can hang out like friends. No, that we can BE friends.

Which was why the Salute to Supernatural last year was so awesome. I feel like a geeky fangirl all the time, but Richard Speight Jr. and Gabriel Tigerman did not treat us like that, they hung out with us and talked to us like we're interesting people. Gabe even came back to the table after being lured away by others. Twice!

We're just over two weeks away from this years convention. Can you believe I didn't have it on my calendar? I'm finally getting excited. Still annoyed that Jared and Jensen are going to every friggin' other convention in the world but can't come see us. But they've posted the schedule and it's enhanced over last year. Bigger and better dessert party, official star presence at the karaoke party, including Richard. I don't know if I'll try to talk to him this year. I can't think of anything to talk about except how he told us to watch Open Water 2 because we see Eric Dane's butt and we actually see a whole lot more of Richard's! Or at least his character's.

Megan is a lot better at the small talk than I am.


Part of last night's dream was the dryer, which is going out and I really want a new one before it dies, because being without one for even a little while will suck, but we're not going to buy a new one until we have to. The problem is, I'm sure, the belt, which is replaceable but not by us, and it seems ridiculous to pay a repair person a few hundred dollars to fix a dryer that's 12+ years old. A new dryer would save us electricity $ in the long run, too.

I had an annual exam today that I had to reschedule. I thought they'd give me a hard time, but for the first time EVER they didn't. So the rest of my day looks like this:

1. Shower
2. Client edits
3. WIP
4. Toy Story 3 with kids and Nana
5. Dinner in the food court
6. City Islanders soccer

Since my phone call to the doctor's office went the opposite as expected, I'm being full-on positive today. I will get the edits done, write more than I did yesterday (10 page) on my WIP, get a request for a full manuscript, and have NO STORMS anywhere near the soccer game.

What's your day look like?

Saturday, June 19, 2010

A Request

Why does every man in every (contemporary) novel I read have a giant flat-screen TV?

Not that there's a problem with giant flat-screen TVs. The only reason it matters is that, every single time, it's mentioned in a derogatory "all men have to have them" manner, complete with implied eyeroll.

You know what? *I* want a giant flatscreen TV. And not just to watch sports on, despite my passion for football.

Something for authors to consider when they're seeking shorthand for portraying their heroes as modern, macho men.

Just a small request, plskthx.

Thursday, June 17, 2010

This and That

I can't shut off the day-job copyeditor part of me when I read anything, and a couple of things have popped up lately that really disappoint me.

You don't hyphenate adverbs and adjectives, like "excellently-done."

When someone says "my skin regiment," I think they have a zombie army. It's regimen.

On the other side of things, a huge thank-you to Shannon Stacey for using "you've got another think coming" correctly! :)

Number One and I saw The A-Team recently. We both LOVED it. She, of course, had no frame of reference for it, and while I have fond memories of loving the TV show, it was too long ago for me to actually remember a lot of details. So we just both thought it was awesome.

I've lost patience with certain reviewers, though, who apply the same complaints to every single action movie no matter what it is, and it's been completely false in many instances. I really dislike Michael Bay-type action movies, the ones full of destruction for destruction's sake. In fact, it was my biggest complaint about The Dark Knight. Long, extended chase sequences bore the heck out of me, and are usually replacements for true plot and relationship substance.

But the complaint did not in any way apply to Iron Man 2 (though other complaints did), which had like three fight scenes that were rather short. And it only barely applied to The A-Team. The thing about TAT's action sequences is that they were clever, and I love cleverness. You had to watch carefully to see how it all fit together, to try to predict what was going to happen next, rather than zone out while explosions follow flying parts follow punches and falls. And I thought they did an admirable job developing character. Sure, we didn't know much about any of them beyond the scope of teh movie's plot, but we don't NEED to know more.

Anyway, great movie, go see it. Oh, and yes, Bradley Cooper's abs are as advertised. And stay through the credits! You really don't want to miss the end thing.

My husband had his identity stolen recently, by someone vying for "stupidest criminal on the planet." So far, we've found out about a Target card they tried to open (thwarted because Target is SMART and called my husband to verify), and a Verizon Wireless account. We know about the Verizon account because the confirmation of opening the account and the first bill came here, to our house.

What kind of half-a**** identity thief uses the correct mailing address? Does he not know or care that he'll get about a week's use of the phones before they get canceled? AND the phones could be used to trace him? He probably spent more time setting up the accounts than total minutes he got to use.

I was in a cyclical funk on Tuesday, one of those hormonally driven slides into "everything sucks and me worst of all." I've got to remember, next month when it happens again, that the best cure is getting out of the house. As soon as the kids and I left for the City Islanders game--first round of the US Open Cup--my mood lifted.

It was an incredible game. The Islanders have only one win all season, and we missed it, being out of town. And last year they went deep into Cup play, beating two MLS teams before losing to DC United. Amazingly, they managed to tie it 2-2 before winning in overtime 4-2. We were in shock! But so excited to be able to hear "Apache," their victory song, on the way out of the stadium.

The only bad thing about the game was that overtime took us into Mayfly Massacre territory. Near the end of regulation play, they started descending from the lights and flying around us, occasionally alighting. It got worse during the first 15-minute overtime period. While Number One and I were in the bathroom between overtimes, Number Two came rushing in, as if the stands had been attacked. And they had! The bleachers were COVERED--literally!--with dead and dying mayflies. We stood at the rail for the rest of the game, doing the mayfly dance. Waving them away, shaking them off our clothes...I had a loose shirt on with a scoop neck, and I swear, half a dozen got into my bra (and back out again, luckily). It was horrible.

But so worth it! Regular game on Saturday, round two of the Cup on Tuesday, and we're dragging Nana along for her first non-grandchild soccer game. It's gonna be epic!

Monday, June 14, 2010

Thank God it's Monday

Thank God it's Monday.

I know, but I really needed the reset. Last week was so LONG, and that was mainly because I kept thinking it was Friday. Starting on Tuesday.

Tuesday was the kids' last day of school. Number One was home before 10, Number Two around 11, and that feeling of leisure and non-urgency is usually associated with Friday. Every day, I felt like it was the end of the week.

So now we've had a weekend, and every part of my brain and body know it's Monday, and this week we start our summer structure. Number Two has strings camp through Thursday. The A/C guy is here doing the annual service check. We'll go pick up Number One's report card, start our weekly housecleaning rotation (today is the bedrooms and bathroom), and maybe go shop for bikes.

Next week they start Camp Nana, and this year, it's enhanced! Aunt Cindy will be participating at least sometimes, and the girls are excited about that. Aunt Cindy is girlie, so they paint nails and do hair and stuff when they're with her.

I need to explore things we can do that won't bore us to death and that are free. I'm very open to suggestions! All I can think of is biking or hiking in state parks. Number One is difficult to drag out of her room, and she will quickly come to hate me if that's all I force her to do all summer.

Has your summer started yet? Can you tell? :)

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Okay, WHAT?!

I had really weird dreams this morning.

First, I woke up around 5 or so, remembering that I had to make sure I was up and dressed and the carport clear for the A/C service guy at 7:30 this morning. Then a while later I remembered that it was Sunday.

So then I dreamed all this stuff I don't remember because I neglected to write this in the morning when it was all VERY fresh, but I do remember some parts.

1. I was at MJ Fredrick's house, and Trish Milburn was there at one point. MJ had a cool house, colonial in style, which I somehow doubt is the norm in San Antonio.

2. They had made TONS of food for a party and Trish kept making me sample stuff. It was really good food. Lots of dips, and a dessert thing that was like two pieces of cracker candy with some whipped creamy type stuff in the middle.

3. A bunch of people started crowding the house, just random visitors, including Fran, who was one of my mother's best friends, but who died over a decade ago. Then he wasn't Fran but some other guy.

4. MJ had a big hole in her counter top, and had covered it with a big white cutting board, and I knocked it askew and it fell into the cabinet underneath, breaking some colorful china thing. I didn't tell her.

5. I said "San Antonio" a lot.

So what the heck is up with THAT?

Wednesday, June 09, 2010


Today we had long, slow rain. The drippy kind. The read-a-book-all-day kind (not that I did that). It was a nice change from last week's wild storms.

But those storms produced the most perfect rainbow I've ever seen!

I don't think I've ever caught the whole arch like that. Usually it's just one side, or it fades to nothing at the top, or all the colors aren't clear. This one almost glowed!

Tuesday, June 08, 2010

Last Day of School

We did not start today off right.

But only, luckily, in the most minor way. You know what's very, very frustrating? Out of 180 school days, the bus arrived late oh, maybe 100 of them. On time about 76 more. Then, suddenly, last Thursday, she's four minutes early. Friday, she was so early we missed it. Yesterday, four minutes early again. Today we had to run for it because she was six freaking minutes early! It takes us less than a minute to get to the bus stop; we thought we had plenty of time. Poor Number Two had to run with her backpack and viola.

We're supposed to be giddy this morning, not grumpy and sweaty.

And thus begins the fifth of my summers "off."

Four years ago, June 8 was the first day of the first summer vacation my kids had ever had. The decade before that, they'd been in day care, which was either preschool or summer camp.

It didn't take them...okay, any of us...long to acclimate. :)

The kids are, of course, excited, even though this summer will likely mean another change. Their father just got a new job that necessitates me also getting a (steady, outside-the-house) job. I'm working on it, and will likely (hopefully!) start working part time in July.

Number Two is the age her sister was when I quit my day job and started working at home. That's kind of poetic, isn't it?

What I'm looking forward to this summer:

1. Not having to get up early every day.

2. Long days, lots of light.

3. No crazy schedules.

4. Salute to Supernatural convention in July.

What I'm not looking forward to:

1. Trying to keep the kids active, especially when I'm not here half the day.

2. Fitting in a day job, my freelance work, activities with the kids, keeping the house decent (though I can put that under "keeping the kids active"), and writing time.

3. Not going on our Cape Cod vacation, which we canceled due to the husband's new job. It was an easy decision, but now lots of my friends have already been to (or are currently at!) the beach, and I'm longing for it.

I know some people have already started their summer vacations, and some have a couple of weeks to go. What's your summer going to be like?

Monday, June 07, 2010

Good Old Days

Number Two mentioned to me yesterday about how long it's been since I blogged. Two weeks! Geez!

I blame the camera. It was never where I wanted it to be. If I was on the laptop upstairs, the camera was downstairs. If I was downstairs, it was up in the kitchen. And everything I wanted to blog about required a picture.

So I finally got my act together, and here it is.

A little anticlimactic, huh? But let me set the scene.

We were at my cousin Joey's. (everyone else calls him Joe, but to me, he's just like the little cousin I grew up with, except taller. Okay, a lot taller, but still. He's Joey.) Anyway, it was me, and my brother, and my cousins, and their mother, and her father, and we're having a lovely time on the back deck, and suddenly, I hear it. Music. But not just any music. Special music.

It was the ice cream truck.

I was the only one, sadly, who got excited by this. Maybe in Massachusetts they still have ice cream trucks every day, but here in lame-o Pennsylvania, we NEVER have them. So we HAD to run after the truck! And we did! This pic is of course the Numbers catching it. I only pretended to run. :) After I snagged my cousin's camera because I'd left mine on the deck.

Yes, the picture I wanted was not even on my camera that was never where I needed it.

So that was our fit of nostalgia. I got ice cream for the girls and for the nephews, popping Spider Man's bubble gum eyes off before handing them over. The bribery didn't really work. I didn't get hugs goodbye that night.

But now that summer vacation is here (as of 10:45 tomorrow morning), I can't help the nostalgia. There is nothing so symbolic of summer as the ice cream truck! We need to start a business here in Central PA.

Who's in?