Wednesday, July 19th, 2017 11:06 pm
Well, I've been so caught up in the house stuff and other things, that I have fallen woefully behind on my friends list/reading list/social media. So instead of staying up until 2am trying to skim your posts, I'm just starting from today. Sorry about that. I still haven't found a balance between my new home on DW and keeping up with LJ people who didn't switch over and apparently I've just stopped checking everything because of it. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯

This Friday we're going to see The Aquabats which is a band I wish I had known about sooner because they are just so geeky and fun. Their TV show is on Netflix now and we binge watched the first season and while we were doing that, they announced a tour so we thought WHY NOT? I mean, Weird Al makes an appearance in their show, they are clearly meant for me.



Also this Friday the contractor is coming out to rip up the wood floor in the kitchen and see if they can dry out everything enough to install new floor soon. We're going to go with porcelain tile. We figured for a room with three water sources, tile was better than wood. And really the only downside to porcelain is if you drop something on it, that thing will break. But I'd rather replace a mug than a floor.

Tim got me hooked on Gwent again. I hadn't played since it was in closed beta, but now it is free to play, open beta. I feel like I'm getting the hang of it but we will see how long that lasts LOL. It's like Hearthstone but a little bit more complicated? I still need to finish the first Witcher game. I really like the story, but it's sooooo clunky because it is soooo old. I could just jump into the second game, but I've got to be close to the end now so why give up?

We finished season 1 of The Expanse but Season 2 isn't on Prime yet and OMG THE CLIFF HANGER!!! I'm hoping one of the nearby libraries gets the set soon so I can request it. Or that Prime gets the second season...but I doubt that will happen until Season 3 starts up :(

I'm about halfway through BBC's Victoria because the library DVD finally had no requests on it so I could keep it for longer than 7 days. I'm enjoying it but I think part of that is my fondness for Rufus Sewell. I do like Jenna Coleman, even if I wasn't a huge Clara fan. She is working for me as Victoria.

OH and I finally watched a few episodes of Gravity Falls and I ADORE IT SO MUCH! Why was I not watching this before??

hmmmm...this makes it sound like I've just been watching a lot of TV instead of reading your posts...not entirely true but I suppose not entirely false either. Sorry about that.

Okay, I should probably sleep now...
Tuesday, July 18th, 2017 10:22 pm
So I took this test where they derive your personality from your reactions to photographs of psychopaths. (Apparently this is a real thing thought up by an actual doctor?) Anyway:



Those maniacs know what's up, I guess.
Monday, July 17th, 2017 09:03 pm
My parents took Tanya for the weekend again. My Mom is actually bringing her back tomorrow and only because Mom has a doctor's appointment. So Bear and I had a nice, more relaxing weekend again. Or at least when we didn't stress over Olivia's rash.

On Saturday morning we took a nice long walk. We wanted to check out our local library branch and go to a few stores. Bear needed to reactivate his card and I wanted to see if they had some movies. And they did - I got Arrival, Fantastic Beasts and Moonlight. Very exciting! We watched Arrival over the weekend, and Bear copied the others to watch later, at some point.

As I was checking out different genres and shelves, I heard someone calling my name. It was Marianna's Dad, Martin. He was on his computer at one of the tables. It turns out that Marianna's Mom works at this branch and her Dad dropped her off and was hanging out. It was nice to see him - I know Marianna's family for almost 23 years now. Bear was waiting outside with the stroller, as we took turns going into the library since I don't want to take the baby inside a public place, so Martin went to meet the baby, while I watched his computer. Now, Bear did met him before a few times, mostly at Tanya and Ida's joint birthday parties and other occasions. But it has been a while and Bear didn't really remember him. So he sees this guy coming toward him with his arms out, and he thinks 'what did I do now'. And Martin doesn't tell him right away who he is but does this in a round about way, as is his humor. Pretty amusing.

On Sunday, we were mostly home. Olivia's rash was getting better all week, it was almost gone by Friday. But it was starting to get worse on Saturday. It might have been a different diaper we were using. So I started to stress about it. This morning, Bear went to work and I decided to take her to the doctor.

It was just me with no car but Google told me it would be a 33 minute walk. So I called, made an appointment and I took Olivia in her stroller. It was really hot to walk but this was necessary. And Google didn't lie. It took 34 minutes. The doctor ordered more creams for us and checked Olivia out and made me feel better. And I was also glad to have her weighed and measured. She gained about pound and a half in one month and grew an inch taller, with her head 2cm bigger. So that's good. I always worry if she's eating enough and it is nice to know that she is. We'll keep fighting this rash.

We got home after 1pm and she had a long nap in the afternoon, so the day went much quicker than usual.
Monday, July 17th, 2017 05:43 pm

Stolen from bookishgeek.



You are not easily impressed. Guys love how much of a challenge you are, but you don’t usually give them the time of day. People probably think you are a bitch, but you like to think of it as you don’t take BS from anyone. You’re the gorgeous girl who every guy would love to get to know, but unless he can break down those walls he doesn’t stand a chance. Source



You're feisty and while that can sometimes get you in trouble, for the most part, it just means that people are wooed by your charismatic personality. You've got some resentment in you for how you've been treated either by your family or society, but that anger only fuels you to go out and subvert expectations in your professional and personal life. Speaking of your personal life, you probably also have a really great pet that's utterly devoted to you. (Rajah forever!) Source



You hold yourself and everyone around you to high standards that you refuse to compromise. You know exactly who you are and what you stand for, and you insist that others respect you for the person you are and not who they want you to be. People love you for your witticisms and your generous heart. Source

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Monday, July 17th, 2017 09:41 am
Disclaimer: I don't own White Collar. I am writing this fic under the fair use exemption for transformative works.

Summary: When the FBI captures Neal Caffrey, infamous thief and con artist, they discover that he is a runaway slave. Now recaptured and sold to recoup his owners' financial losses, Neal schemes and waits for his chance. After all he escaped once. But Neal isn't the only one plotting his escape, and not all of his fellow schemers have his best interests at heart.

Author's Note: Written as a prompt fill on livejournal for thetammyjo. Only took me five years to finish it. Thank you to duckie-duckduck on tumblr for the beta.

00316618525: Part One ).

To be continued...

Monday, July 17th, 2017 08:59 am
1) Do you want to get married?
"Did you want to get married?"


When I was growing up, marriage was a natural assumption. In former Soviet Union people married young (My parents married at just under 22), and if a woman was unmarried by 25, she was thought of as old maid. So I just assumed marriage was the path. I never thought about weddings though. They were nice but nowhere a 'perfect day'.

My cousin Katya, who is 8.5 years older than me was an unusual case that did showed an alternative. After she broke up with her boyfriend in medical school, she pretty much declared her intention not to get married. She had her son by herself at 29 and never married. But despite that example, I still assumed I would marry.

I met Bear in college when we were 18 (we met the second day and we're dating pretty much a week later). When we met I didn't think of marriage, of course. But we just kept dating and proved very compatible. Three years later, when I was 21 and just graduated college, I was visiting Belarus, and there I really thought for the first time and long term and marriage. And then I decided that, yes, I do see my future with Bear. It would be another year before my friend 's Mom prompted a conversation between us and Bear and I agreed we were on the marriage path. But it would be ten more years before we would actually marry.

I went to grad school, we were busy and Bear was nervous about actual marriage part. He was committed to me but he was afraid marriage would change things or me and he didn't feel he was financially ready either. And I didn't just want to get married for the sake of it, I wanted to marry Bear. So I waited for him to get ready. I myself wasn't ready until I was 25 or so.

Finally, when we were 31, close to New Year, Bear knew that if he didn't propose, I would be finally done waiting. I didn't say it, or give him an ultimatum but he could sense it, so when we were on vacation in Montauk he proposed. We got married eight months later in August 2012.

2) Where would you like to get married?
"Where did you get married?"


We got married at a Russian restaurant Tatiana on Brighton Beach. We both wanted a small wedding, 40 guests max, and the restaurant had a beautiful private room, all fancy. Bear was sold on the idea of russiab restaurant years back whrn we went to a friend's wedding in one. Thete is just so much food! We had a rabbi and a priest do a ceremony at the restaurant.

Here's my blog recap of the wedding:
Wedding post with some pics


3) If you were getting married in a week, who would be in your wedding party?
"Who was in your wedding party?"


One thing I didn't care about is having a wedding party. We had a great wedding but there is so much I couldn't care less about. I didn't do a professional photographer because my Mom had an awesome camera, I did minimum of flowers since the room was already decorated. I didn't want a limo etc. And I didn't want my friends in matching dresses. They could wear whatever. Yeva was my maid of honor and Jeremy was Bear's best man. They signed the kettubah and were witnesses for the license. The rest of my friends could just come enjoy the party wearing whatever they wanted.

4) What would your wedding colours be?
What were your wedding colors?


I didn't care for that either. But when we ordered our cake, it was white and red, so I got a white and red bouquet and white and red flowers for main table. So I guess those were the colors.

5) Does marriage mean to you 'til death do us part?'

It does. Provided, of course, no one becomes abusive or becomes a drug addict or some other situation like that. I think both parties need to work to maintain a marriage and be respectful. But I do approach it as a lifetime commitment.
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Sunday, July 16th, 2017 10:01 pm
I have been in bed 80% of the past 48 hours because my goddamn head is caving in and nothing can touch the pain and basically I want to burn everything.
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Sunday, July 16th, 2017 11:18 pm
I.
I've finally seen "Wonder Woman" (it did come out later in the Netherlands and then I was travelling and had no time to breath). I left in love - it was a flawed movie (that boat trip was just hilariously wrong), but oh, did it do things right. I did stay out of the overall discussion, for various reasons, but two thoughts that I keep coming back to.
1. Am I happy that they went for the "wrong war". I am so, so, so tired of American stories using WWII as a backdrop. I know that it is part of the history of the character, but well ... Sometimes, if we tell the stories anew, we need to change them.
2. When writing this, I am sitting on a plane, the passengers boarding walking past me on the way to their seats: people flying from Munich to Amsterdam, from Germany to the Netherlands. And it brings it home once again: Gal Gadot would stand out among them - for being somewhat darker, somewhat different, foreign enough to be seen as "not one of us". Is it my own experience talking? Perhaps. I'm pretty sure they have not thought of this, making an American movie. But to me, with my experience of being the other in Western Europe, with the movie taking part in UK, Belgium and France, with Gal Gadot's own Israeli background, this is an Jewish woman, a woman representing an ethnic minority, a woman representing a certain Middle-Eastern look that would draw racism and discrimination, being powerful on screen. This gives me so freaking many feelings.

II.
American Gods. (Thanks, [personal profile] giallarhorn!) I'm two episodes in and I love it. I found the Bilquis sex scene less impressive than the online discussion let me to believe, but it *was* well done. The casting so far has been superb - different from what I thought (in my imagination, Shadow was rather Native American than black), but working in a way that is definitely overwriting my assumptions. The only thing I wish for were proper prononciation for the Zorya's names, especially among the Zoryas and Czernobog. But oh well.

III.
They did change Druckfrisch to a bi-monthly schedule, didn't they? I am so freaking sad about it, it still is perhaps the only German TV show worth watching D:

IV.
Also seen the two first seasons of Voltron. Meh. I will give it another try - in the end, the next season has Lotor. But so far it gives me zero feelings. It does certainly not help that even as a kid, I loved the vehicle Voltron version a lot more than the lion one. I'm kind of sad about this - I really wanted something else to be fannish about (not that I grow tired of Marvel/Loki but I have the distinct feeling that the whole universe goes into a direction I do not like). Oh well.
(Both Wonder Woman and American Gods are too good. Fannish needs a story with enough holes to feel them up with imagination but at the same time not enough to totally throw me off. I'm strange like that, it's hard to get me there, only very few shows ever managed.)
Friday, July 14th, 2017 10:49 pm
I spent most of today in bed because Pain. I'm exhausted on a cellular level. My mood is weird. Sometimes my thoughts are totally scattered. Sometimes I'm down, sometimes irritable and/or anxious. I am paranoid and scared and stressed, especially about money to the point that I feel physically ill.

My thoughts are too loud, like bat wings breaking the air by my ears.

I want to get this haircut again, my favorite:

 

It feels so good, but I look dyke-y and even fatter with short hair. My long hair is beautiful and I look better with it, but it's uncomfortable. Maybe I'm just so irritable that everything bothers me. My hair hurts. Maybe I want to slice it off so that just one thing will be lighter. I can carry one less thing.

I have this unshakable feeling that I'm a bad person, and there's nothing I can do to fix it. Out, damned spot. Hell is murky.
Friday, July 14th, 2017 07:26 pm
1. Do you make your bed?

Not currently because I feed the baby sitting on it and she naps on me there during the day and it is just not practical right now. But usually I love making my bed in the morning and for it all to look neat. I could make my bed from end of February to early June and it was pretty great. Looking forward to that again.

2. The first car that was officially yours?
I never owned a car. I do have my license but I almost never drive. I don't like to.

3. Three grocery items you don't run out of?
Bread, milk, tea

4. When did you start doing your own laundry?
In college. My Mom is possessive of her machine and she'd rather do everything 'correctly' herself. So first time I did anything other than hand wash was in college.

5. If you could, would you go to High School again?
No. College, why not, but high school is too teenagery.

6. Can you parallel park in under three moves?
I think 4 moves. My driving instructor taught me a full proof method which served me well when I had to parallel park a giant van during my driving test. But, as I said above, I don't really actually drive so while I can still theoretically do it, I haven't done it for real in 16 years.

7. A job you had which people would be shocked to know you had?

I don't think I had any shocking job. I was a camp conselor at a sleepaway camp when I was 19 and day camp at 20 and 21. Since then I've taught history and writing in college and now I have an office job. Nothing really shocking at all.

8. First TV?
My parents came to visit me after a first month in college. I made sure we went to the mall so I could get a very small TV for $100, which at the time was really, really tiny. But it was good enough to watch network shows. I really didn't like being without TV then.

9. Can you drive a stick shift?
No.

10. Favorite TV show?
I don't have just one favorite and there are too many. Star Trek:TNG, Star Trek: Voyager, Buffy, Doctor Who, Farscape, Rome, Community, Friends and there are many many more. I can't pick.

11. Would you rather be too hot or cold?
Too hot. I've been too cold (in Grand Canyon, it was super freezing when we went),really didn't like being that cold.

12. If the world ends do you want to be one of the survivors?
Probably not.

13. Sweet or Salty?
Sweet.

14. Do you enjoy soaking in a nice bath?
Once in a while. Mostly I prefer a nice hot shower.

15. Do you consider yourself strong?
Not particularly.

16. Something people do, physically, that drives you crazy?
Clip their nails.

17. Something you do, physically, that you are sure drives other people crazy?
Don't know. I'm sure there's something.

18. Do you have any birthmarks?
No.

19. Favorite card game?
Durak or fool, a Russian card game. Also Uno.

20. Do you talk to yourself?
Yes. All the time. Most of the time I come up with a story and talk it out to myself as different characters.

21. Do you like doing jig-saw puzzles?
Sometimes. I got this world map one for my birthday once, that one was fun to do.

22. Would you go on a reality show?
Most likely not unless it was one of the nice ones like the Baking Show or something. Or travel show. But probably not.

23. Tea or coffee?
Tea.

24. First thing you remember wanting to be when you grew up?
A teacher. I always wanted to be a teacher. I don't think I wanted to be anything else. As I grew up, level of teaching went up to, from kid's teacher to college professor. And I got to do it for some years too. Big part of me is sad to let that go.

25. No matter how much money you have or don't have, what are you an absolute snob about?
Tea. I want nice tea from Teavana.
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Friday, July 14th, 2017 09:24 am
I try to not get too political here, but this is something near and dear to me. Public media needs support from YOU right now. Email your Congress-person with this handy form to let them know that access to public media is important for all Americans, not just ones that pay for cable or live in certain areas.

Takes just a moment - https://protectmypublicmedia.org/email-save-funding
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Wednesday, July 12th, 2017 09:35 pm
I'm that object at rest. If you're able to get me going, I get going. But whatever shall the unbalanced force in my life be? My life is an unbalanced force, currently. I want to use sheer will to push myself on. I want to inspire myself. I want to get my body up and running again, and my mind, too!

You know, I don't watch TV. I bum off my mother's Netflix account whenever Luka decides he wants to watch a movie with me. That's pretty much it. We were watching The Office while eating dinner or before bed for a couple of days. In the past, we've done that a little bit. Watched a few episodes of The X-Files together, watched some Unbreakable Kimmy Schmit (why was that one of the few shows we've started to watch together? No offense to fans, it wasn't bad or anything, but not one of my favorite shows), some anime stuff....

I decided to ride the stationary bike the other day for an hour, but wanted to keep myself entertained. I was at my grandma's house the night previously, and something on her TV brought up old 90s shows. I think they mentioned Beverly Hills, 90210 and Dawson's Creek. The clips they showed got me feeling all nostalgic, so I decide I'd look them up on Netflix, since I thought the news program said they were on there. But they aren't. But, Party of Five is. So I decided to watch it while exercising.

And now tonight, while Luka is playing with his D&D group, I decided to watch a few more episodes. I think I watched 2.5 episodes tonight. And it is fun! I forgot how cute I thought/think Scott Wolf is, and how young/cute Matthew Fox was. And how pretty Neve Cambell is and how cool I thought little Claudia was (who is Lacey Chabert, of Mean Girls!). So many tense issues in that sentence... anyway...

Overall, I don't think television is something I seem to value too highly. It is fun for a bit, but then I think about the things I feel like I would rather be doing, like reading or writing or exercising or being social.... and then realize that all of those things are more work. But I'm not a TV person. I don't think there is a show I've ever seen the entirety of! I've almost watched all of Arrested Development, Friends, Alias. I've watched a lot of Buffy the Vampire Slayer, Full House, a few animes. Oh, I watched all of one version of Full Metal Alchemist. I loved that. I've devoted a decent amount of time watching Orange is the New Black, The West Wing, The X-Files, Degrassi and Skins for like a summer or two. Maybe it seems like a lot. But overall, not a whole lot of my time goes into watching television. At least not now. Maybe in the past? My memory is foggy, it didn't seem like a lot, but listing what I have seen, maybe it was more than I'd like to admit. As a teen, I do remember staying up really late watching shows online.

I decided to look at my old LJ profile/interests to see what else I liked at one time. Oh yeah! Curb Your Enthusiasm, which is coming back! That's a good show. Oh, and Scrubs and Veronica Mars, watched a decent bit of those shows. But like.... those are those shows of my life, I think. Besides, you know, Barney and Friends or whatever. Blues Clues.

Television is fun, and is sometimes something I'd like to dive into, but it's kind of in the same category as video games, unfortunately for my boyfriend. He wishes I was into them more, and it's not that I don't like them. I do. Sometimes I get into a game and I play it a lot. Too much. And I consider it too much and feel it was too much because it's not something that's high enough on my priority list. I guess. It's not a real list I have, just some half-formed gauge inside of me.

It might be because they feel more passive. Kind of. I mean, sometimes good shows or movies or games can be thought-provoking. But I think that's what really counts, for me. I want thought-provoking. I want to learn something meaningful, that will help me grow in a major way. But I'm not doing those things. I'm burnt out, and being sedentary and overweight doesn't help. So something's gotta give to get me back into doing things, creating things, being active physically and mentally.

I've gotta get conscious and make decisions that are right for me. I want to take control of my diet, my body, my mind. I want to be in control of me. I want to live my life imagined, and not just let things happen to me. I want to be go-with-the-flow when it comes to accepting what pans out, the reality of what is right at this moment in time, but I don't want to lie on my back and see what just happens to come to me in my life. You know? That makes sense, right? 

But, it comes back to the question: what do I value? What is important? That online conversation with that guy whose name I can't remember but can only recall he was a lot older than me, and in a wheelchair, always sticks out in my fuzzy memory. Make flash cards of different things in life. Priorities. Rank them. Save them. Review them later. Re-rank them. Always think of my values and re-align myself with them.

What do I value? Let's force myself to answer this instead of taking the easy way out. My health. I value being alive, and being able to function normally, in a way that isn't difficult or limiting. I value my body, and my appearance. This is hard to say, because I've really let myself go. But when I'm honest, I do value my appearance. You have to, because it's part of who you are, and it's part of your body and that's part of you, and who you are. It's important. Others judge you based on it. And matter of fact is, you're gonna be judged. You might not like it, but you can't ignore it, because it's true. So ignoring it isn't going to make it go away. So I want to look good and I do want to feel healthy. I want these things because they will make me happy. I value my happiness. REMEMBER THIS, ME. I value my happiness, so I'm going to fight for my happiness. I've learned that it isn't something that always just comes to you. You have to make it happen with the choices you make. The choices can be as simple as accepting I DESERVE TO BE HAPPY. It's okay to be happy. It's good to be happy! You can be happy. Allow yourself happiness. I will meditate to increase mindfulness, and to squash self-harming thoughts. (Not thoughts of self-harming, but self defeating thoughts, which are harmful.) Something that I do value, absolutely, despite my lacking in this area: knowledge, and education. I think it's very important to be forever learning. I want to learn all of the things! I also want to try new things!

This leads to a sub-topic... guns. I don't really care for guns. Never been fascinated by them, always wanted them to go away. But Luka just put a down payment on one. It makes me a tad bit queasy to think about. But... don't I like learning about new things? Am I open-minded? Will I try something new, and go to a shooting range with him?

Family was always listed on the very top of my values list when I was younger. Back when I think I once had an actually existing, written list. I do still value family. They are important, and I love them dearly. But, I guess they've slipped down the list a bit. I don't choose to make time for them (as much as I'd like to). Then, I have that thought. I think... that means I want them to be higher up on that list. Maybe I should make a real list. This a work in progress.

Personal Values
1. Happiness
2. Family
3. Health
4. Knowledge
5. Education
6. Appearance
Wednesday, July 12th, 2017 06:38 pm
 I run a challenge comm called Showverse. This'll be where I post anything that I make for it. Feel free to ignore. :) 

Title + tag line )
Lead characters  )
Tuesday, July 11th, 2017 08:57 pm
Education Secretary Betsy DeVos is meeting with "men's rights" groups to discuss campus rape policies. One of the groups involved publishes treatises on things like, "falsely accused students suffer emotional trauma similar to that of rape victims." I don't know about you, but I'm feeling pretty optimistic about this.
Tuesday, July 11th, 2017 09:56 am
Well, it has been a crazy few weeks. Wisconsin trip, our friend from Chicago flying out wit his 2 year old for the weekend and to top it all off, our dishwasher sprung a leak and destroyed the hardwood floor in our kitchen.

We are thinking we will replace the hardwood with something else - wood seems like a pain in the kitchen where water is always a factor. So I'm doing a bit of crowd sourcing here - what do you have for the floor in your kitchen? Pros and Cons?
Tuesday, July 11th, 2017 02:32 am
On the other hand, I just read super happiness inducing spoilers for Spider-Man: Homecoming and Infinity War, so that definitely helps me in these times where the world is awful and my illnesses have created an infinite feedback loop.
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Monday, July 10th, 2017 10:54 pm
Meanwhile in Arkansas, women now legally require explicit permission from the father of the fetus to abort it, even if that male was a domestic abuser and/or rapist.

I personally think it's SUPER when I have to ask my rapist for permission to do something to my own body. This will in no way compound the trauma and reinforce the idea that I deserved to be assaulted because my body's purpose is to provide pleasure at the whim of men.
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Monday, July 10th, 2017 09:58 pm
Today's mood is