Friday, December 30, 2011

Man it's hard to blog during the holidays when my family is visiting.

Just saying.

However - my parents did give me a wonderful, amazingly cool gift - a tablet! I set it up and proceeded to draw worse than I've ever drawn before. See, typically, I draw my pictures here using a mouse and photoshop. I figured, at least that was an excuse for the awful artwork. Now, the excuse is even better: it's really hard to draw with a tablet!

So. Uh.

Please enjoy the first drawing I've ever drawn on a tablet and try not to compare it to any third grader's artwork you've seen. Scratch that. Don't even compare it to a kindergartener. I think that children with no hands can create better drawings. Happy New Year if I don't manage to find time to sit at my computer again tomorrow.

Sunday, December 25, 2011

Merry Christmas!

First off, please accept my generic "happy holidays" to those of you not celebrating Christmas today. I'm sorry that every store except the Chinese restaurant and movie theatre are closed and hope that the Chinese restaurant closest to you does not serve cat.

I do celebrate Christmas and I've gotta say, sometimes I manage to give myself the short end of the stick. First off, my husband and I exchanged gifts this year after not being able to last year. For the most part, I plan our budget, so our conversation went like this:

Husband: So how much are we spending on each other?
Me: (Casually, in a "I totally didn't just spend over $100 on your new monitor gift" voice) $50 or less.
Husband: Got it.

And don't get me wrong; I'd rather get something that would make him happy and get a gift that costs less because it's not about how much you spend. But I do sometimes stop and marvel at the way I make it work for people that are not me.

But then it got better.

I mean, for my husband. It got better for my husband.

We exchanged our gifts and he was very happy to receive his new monitor, as his old monitor might be older than both of our puppies put together (for clarification purposes, please note that I refer to my dogs as puppies despite the fact that they are 5 and 3, roughly).

His old monitor still works though, and his graphics card supports two monitors, so he decided to do a dual monitor set up, which I expected. What I did not plan for was his desk, which is barely big enough for his old, smaller monitor.

I looked at my husband. I looked at his desk. And then I looked at my desk, my desk with its much larger surface area.

So this Christmas, my husband ended up with my desk.

Friday, December 23, 2011

It doesn't feel right!

People, listen to me. It is December 23rd and I have my windows open!

Open, I tell you.

I'm wearing a t-shirt and skirt and am not wrapped up in a blanket. I am slightly confused and slightly afraid.

Despite my guildmates in WoW who insist on calling me Canadian, I am not Canadian (and I don't eat mooseburgers). But I am from one of the farthest northern points in the continental US. I've spent over two decades living in areas where Christmas is synonymous with snow.

Now that I'm living in Florida, I find myself terrified to realize that I might spend the next two decades living in areas where it doesn't snow in the winter and where, in fact, SUMMER is the worst season due to unbearable heat and copious amounts of rain (and the stray hurricane). 

This is my second full winter here and I still haven't quite learned how to shift my life properly, like doing yard work into the fall and winter, when it's not 90 degrees outside and 100% humidity. You know how health professionals talk about seasonal affective disorder? (aka SAD. Isn't that cute?)

I fear I have that, but in reverse. The shortening days, the diminished sunlight - sure it's depressing, but not as depressing as knowing that these are the best days for having the windows open and for deciding to eat outside at a restaurant or in the privacy of our gazebo and I just don't know how to get my body wired for that.

For example, I still took out my heavy comforter and flannel sheets for the bed when December rolled around. And I still sleep under them. And then turn the fan on so I don't overheat.

For example, I wrap myself up in a blanket and scarf to let the dogs out each morning, and then realize it's actually gorgeous outside and now I look like a hobo.

For example, temperatures under 70 degrees send me running to wear my winter coat.

Wait. That last one there just means that I'm behaving like a Floridian after all!

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

So Maybe It's Island Turtle Month

I realized when I went back and read my older posts for December that I had mentioned something about Island Turtle stories running for a week or so. I guess my definition of "a week" is kind of at odds with the dictionary. Sorry about that.

Thursday, December 15, 2011

Adventures in Real Life Island Turtle-ing

As luck would have it, this week my roommate is turtle sitting a friend's turtle. You can imagine how this went:

Sunday, December 11, 2011

The Origin Story of Island Turtle

Sure, you might have become a little more familiar with Island Turtle. You know he's a turtle, and that he's on an island. And that he wears sunglasses. But perhaps you would like to know more. Perhaps you are interested in finding out where Island Turtle came from, why he is where he is, and how he came to be known as the one and only Island Turtle.

Island Turtle has been around for many years now and it shouldn't be surprising to know that he showed up in my younger years. I remember meeting him for the first time, and being very excited to learn more about this turtle who happened to be on an unnamed island.

I asked him where he came from and he after a pause, he began to tell me his long and interesting tale. And now, today, I pass on that tale to you. As I recall, this is how it goes:

A long time ago, many years ago, there was an island.

And there was a turtle on this island.

The end.

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

Island Turtle makes everyone happy except when he doesn't

My manager was not happy the day she met Island Turtle. I was working in the bakeshop of the Jewel near my college at this point in my life and typically worked evening shifts after classes.

"What is this Island Turtle?" my manager demanded as I walked into work for the evening. "I get to work this morning and see that the shelves are practically empty, that's there is very little back up, and yet there was time yesterday to draw some turtle on an island?"

Yikes. I wanted to say that it actually only takes me about thirty seconds to sketch Island Turtle, but I had a feeling that answer wouldn't help my case.

Island Turtle is cool on cardboard.

I went instead with the better choice of apologizing. My manager, who happens to be one of the most patient and understanding people I've had the chance to work for, shrugged and told me it was fine as long as I didn't do it again.

So I worked extra hard during my shift and before she left for the evening, cautiously brought up Island Turtle again.

"Basically, he's awesome," I told her as she looked at me with a raised eyebrow. "I'm serious. Island Turtle is just sort of there - he's on an island, but it's ok - he's just there to relax."

She looked at the drawing again and shook her head. "He's either the biggest turtle I've seen or on the most pathetic island imaginable."

I assured her that it was a little bit of both.

During the time I worked in the bakeshop there, my coworkers slowly became familiar with Island Turtle. He had a tendency to show up on our whiteboard for motivation, although it wasn't unheard of for him to show up on another cardboard box. In fact, when I stopped working there because I was moving down to Florida, I even made clay keepsake Island Turtles for all of my bakeshop coworkers.

They were even all kind enough to act impressed when presented with their wonderful gifts.

Tuesday, December 6, 2011

Introducing... Island Turtle!

Who is... Island Turtle?

He's a turtle. On an island.

Island turtle is kind of like my mascot. He's just out there, chilling on his island. He's totally relaxed. He goes with the flow. When I'm feeling stressed or bummed out, Island Turtle is there, looking at me through his shades. Reminding me that I, too, can experience the relaxation he does - I don't even need to be on an island to do so!

I really like Island Turtle and I hope you do too, because the rest of the week is going to be Island Turtle stories! I'm so relaxed already.

Saturday, December 3, 2011

In which I lose and find my cell phone

When I woke up this morning, I was feeling somewhat sick. You might know the feeling: not really sick - just a bit more groggy; maybe your stomach hurts a little or something. It didn't get better after oatmeal for breakfast, or after playing WoW for a bit so I decided to lie down and watch TV in my room. I grabbed my cell phone and headed to the bedroom.

I shut the door to the room and grabbed some comfy pants to change into. Sophie and Sherlock jumped up on the bed and made themselves comfortable on either side of my pillows. Just as I was about to turn on the TV, I heard a knock at our front door and the dogs started going crazy.

I was a little annoyed, because I had been winding down and had been almost positive I could take a nap. Not any more though. Sleeping during the day when I'm feeling only a little sick is not an easy task. I don't know about you, but if I can fall asleep during the day that typically means that I'm more sick than I care to admit.

Anyhow, having gotten up to go answer the door and subsequently send a guy away who was trying to rake our lawn or clean off our roof, whatever we needed him to do! - I no longer felt like going to sleep. I went back to my desk and read the internet for a bit. Then I thought about maybe texting Smiley, who had been at work all morning.

I reached for my cell phone on the desk and it wasn't there. Oh right, I remembered, I had brought it to the bedroom. It was probably on the TV stand or the shelves. Maybe on the window sill. As I went back into the room and looked at each of these places in turn, the cell phone did not turn up. Weird. I knew I had gone straight from one room to another but just in case, I started checking our extra room, the kitchen and the dining room.

Still no cell phone.

Luckily, my roommate was awake at this point. I asked her if she could call my phone, as mine seemed to be lost in the void space I call home.

"Sure Dani," says my roommate, and goes to grab her phone. I wait while she ruffles through her bag. A few seconds go by and she starts searching deeper into the bag, looking inside the little inner zipped pocket. "Hm."

"The void claims another victim?"

So now my roommate starts retracing her steps and because she appears to be luckier than me, she finds her phone in her work clothes pocket. The phone battery is dead though, so she has to grab her charger and plug it in first.

I stand nearby, ready to listen for my cell phone ringing. I'm almost positive that I've turned up the volume on the phone and I try not to imagine what a pain it will be to find if I didn't.

"Ok, it's ringing," she says.

There is a silent, tense moment while I wait to see whether I left my phone in the computer room or in the bedroom and then my sweatshirt pocket starts vibrating.

Yeah. I seriously contemplated running to the bedroom and pretending like I found it on the floor, but it was too late.

My roommate might still be laughing.