Monday, December 29, 2008

Blog Fun Ahoy!

I've been cooped up a lot, surprise surprise, but I'm putting the time to good use by catching up on my favorite blogs.

Holy frijoles, I just found out I won a contest on the Bind-it-All blog! Yeah, I know, you'd think I'd have figured it out before this, but I can be surprisingly ditzy. Sure, I wondered what became of that zombie pic I sent out, but then I figured I'd have heard something in my email box by now if anything exciting came to pass. Apparently it's harder to find my email via this blog than I thought. I'll have to look into some sort of "contact me" dealie for this thing. Don't wait up...I'm still trying to figure out how to add links to my friends' blogs somewhere on the margin of this thing.
Anyway, speaking of links, here I am:
Fully zombified! I just wish I'd been well enough to keep my plans to join the zombie walk invading downtown Raleigh, but I guess that's what next halloween is for.

Tra-la-la...on to the next blog I'm all worked up about. Meet Becky Higgins (if you don't know her already) and Project 365:
Now, a couple of summers ago I got the idea to take a picture every day and scrapbook them. This lasted about one week, producing the following photos:

And then I kind of forgot that I was doing it. So when I saw Becky Higgins' 365 Project it made me go, "Oh yeah! Maybe I'll give it a try again." I'm hoping the kit's unforgiving daily spaces each requiring filling (or they'll sit there like a big toothless grimace at the end of the week) will keep me honest and on task. As silly as it sounds, the pics you see here--boring as they may be to people who aren't, well, me--actually are pretty evident of the time they were taken. Usagi (shown with head inside a stock pot) is wearing a funny little necklace I made for her, Revco, and some of their other canine pals around that time. Those cute little beady eyed furballs were flying squirrels my friend Lisa was rehabilitating at the time. And yes, that's my head in a traction unit which I noticed via other pictures, gives me this really creepy over-facelifted look when it's pulling on the skin around my forehead. How would I have otherwise learned this important information? :) In another, Scott is working out at the gym where we used to go before I got so much worse. And therein lies my one fear in doing this. I'm scared it will make my degeneration even more evident than it already is. And it's been bad lately. On the other hand, maybe I'll find that I'm putting too much focus on the bad times. Or maybe I'm missing something important that can make life better, physically or mentally. Or, I could just end up with a neat photographic project, which is really all I want from it anyway.
And one last blog link. A fellow Fiskateer has asked us to feature a link to her site with pics from the new classes she is teaching:
Yeah, the classes are a leeeeeeeeeeeeeetle far away for those of us in NC to attend, but the card organizer idea struck me as a project that could be cool to mimic using all that left over holiday scrapbooking paper and whatnot in order to make a book to keep all those Xmas cards in. And while you're poking around, check out the store's site. There are more pics on the classes page including the "Love Notes" book (using the Bind-it-All, thus we come full circle) that also offers a neat design that could be repurposed to store those stacks of glittery cards I never have any idea what to do with once we stash our tree away for another year. Maybe if I can ever get caught up on the Raleigh Rodent Rescue emails (I swear people believe that animal rescue workers don't eat, sleep or celebrate holidays. Or at least they believe that we shouldn't), you'll get to see my version here. Maybe. :)

Saturday, December 13, 2008

In Good with the In Laws and Rolling Around Disney

Thanksgiving used to be my least favorite holiday by far. In school it just seemed like an unnecessary interruption in my life. Why not just add a few extra days to xmas break? With my parents divorced and not in a real friendly way, it was a supremely awkward holiday. Who celebrates what when? If I stay too long at one place I risk insulting the other, and leaving too early does the same. And don't forget the mandatory mass. Not that I'm against going to other people's religious services, but it's complicated when your mom's a Catholic who desperately wants to believe you are too, yet your Buddhist principles won't let you disrespect the Church by going to Communion (it's a Catholic thing) so things get all complicated. And that was just the beginning.

As you can imagine, Thanksgiving is the high holy day of awkwardness for vegans. Family members used to either go overboard trying to accommodate my eating choices, resulting in embarassment and apologies all around when I can't eat anything they made because they thought dairy products were vegan (and I can't even cheat a little to be nice, even if I wanted to, because I am also wildly allergic to dairy. Eating it would only make things even more awkward as I projectile vomited all over the little ceramic pilgrim centerpiece.) or they'd be annoyed as hell with me, taking my veganism as a personal affront, and spent the entire dinner saying things like, (Quote) "You know this vegetarian thing you're doing in just stupid, right?" While I smile and nod politely wishing I could just sink to the center to the earth. Either way, I end up spending the the whole time wishing everyone would please please just ignore me. I love it when people cook for me, but it's not mandatory, and skipping a meal never killed anyone. Neither has pushing a banana and a scoop of cranberry sauce around your plate trying to make it look like you're feasting, but not eating feels a lot less weird.

Now that I'm significantly more independent and the tables have turned so thereare more vegans in the family than otherwise, Thanksgiving is a whole lot easier and has become something I actually look forward to. The last couple of years, I even dare to call it "relaxing". I had a great time hanging out with mom and Nicky (my brother) in Tallahassee, exploring the joys of Big Lots together, and kicking back with the inlaws in whatever small town they live in near Tampa, was pretty darn pleasant. My mother in law is also a crafty girl, so I even got some work done on my xmas projects. Can I go back now. Please? I sent out a bajillion thanksgiving cards (a set soon to be available on my Etsy site), made a ribbon/paper tree, finished a few presents which I can't show here because, well, my friends read this.

The highlights of the trip, for me, were getting to bring the dogs along (isn't Revco cute in his wee little stripey shirt?) and going to Disney World for a day. It killed me to have to leave with only half of the Magic Kingdom done, but you can see from the pic that I wasn't too upset about it. Surely we can come up with an excuse to go again. Jen, Alex, I'm looking at you.

So, I duno, I think I can honestly say Thanksgiving is one of my favorite holidays now. Tell that to the girl feeling guilty for secretly pulling full sticks of butter out of the mashed potatoes when her grandmother had turned around, the girl who got pinkeye from the stepmonster's mistreated Great Dane who was used to being punched in the face by a stepbrother that girl was pretty sure would stalk or shoot her one day, the same girl who showed up for a second Thanksgiving dinner only to hear, "You look so disgusting, I can't even look at you, now get in the car or we'll be late for church."
I don't think she'd believe it. Then again, I'm sure I'm not the only one who finds themselves trying to shake some of the holiday's less desirable traditions, memories, and all those things that look so nice in TV commercials. Go ahead, click that comment box and purge your Thanksgiving nightmares and weirdness. I dare you.