rebecca_in_blue: (dozing off)
I'm grateful to have been off work for the last weekend before Christmas. I know all the stores were madhouses this weekend. It was still a pretty busy weekend for me, though. On Saturday, I went to the bookstore and browsed through Victor Hugo's Les Miserables. As much as I love the musical (ONLY TWO DAYS LEFT!), I'd never read the novel before, and it's so massive that I'm amazed anyone anywhere ever actually read the whole thing. I was glad to see that the musical made some much-needed changes and improvements. The book is packed with confusing subplots, pointless extra characters, even more unrealistic coincidences than the musical, and worst of all, a showdown between Valjean and Marius (who despise each other in the book!) fighting for "ownership" of Cosette. Ugh!

This afternoon, "Briana" and I went ice-skating at a very swanky local hotel who turned their swimming pool into an ice-skating rink for the winter (Big Brothers Big Sisters had given us a coupon to the place). I had fun, but once again, I'm not sure Briana did. She was excited on the way there, but once on the ice, she got very hesitant and nervous. She probably spent more time sitting and watching everyone else than she did skating. She's not very eager to try new things or go new places, and I don't know what to do about that. She literally only ever wants to do the same thing (walk the mall). We've now been matched for six months, half of the year that BBBS asks of you. I feel bad saying this, but I'm glad we're halfway done. God help me get through the next six months.

In other news, a few years ago, as part of a French project, I recorded an interview with Grandma talking about her early life and speaking Cajun French. Over the past week, I converted the cassette tape into a digital music file, spliced it into tracks in iTunes, and burned them onto CDs to give out as Christmas gifts. After ice-skating, I drove out to my cousin's place to give one to him, then to CJ & Company's, then to Aunt Carla's. I had wrapped Aunt Carla's in paper and ribbon and asked her to wait until Christmas to open it, but Adam opened his big mouth and told her what it was, and she started bawling. I just about socked him. It was exhausting to run all those errands, but I'm glad I could give my relatives a preservation of Grandma talking, laughing, and describing her life in her own words. It's a lot more meaningful than most Christmas gifts. And I got junk food and fresh, home-grown lemons out of it -- yum!

P.S. Just pre-ordered our tickets to Les Miserables on December 25th!
rebecca_in_blue: (dozing off)
I keep having dreams where Grandma comes back from the dead to cook something for me. Then I wake up hungry. It's kinda depressing. I recently found an old cassette tape I recorded years ago of Grandma talking about her early life and speaking some Cajun French. (I must have done it as a project for one of my French classes.) It's nice to be able to still hear her voice. I really wish I had some recording of Dad or Aunt Carolyn's voices.

I've been wasting spending time lately at the website Awful Library Books. It's a very interesting place where librarians blog about books that are being retired from their libraries. Most of them are hilariously outdated books on fashion tips or computer guides, but my jaw dropped when I came across Don't Make Me Go Back, Mommy: A Child's Book About Satanic Ritual Abuse. I had to see it to believe it. (Things get even better in part two!) There's also this old baby-name book with some very odd list categories; this one is for you, Sara.

Two exciting things about this week: I finally figured out how to crop to ratio in the Bitmap Paint program (I've been wanting to do this for years) and the website Child Starlets switched most of their content to FREE! These are huge deals for me.

I just got back from the Tu Bish'vat seder at the temple, but I will blog about that later. It lasted for over two hours, so I'm exhausted now. Torah study is tomorrow morning, and hopefully there'll be some more fun stuff tomorrow night.

FOUR ... DAYS ... LEFT until NCIS's 200th episode!
rebecca_in_blue: (raised eyebrows)
There hasn't been much to blog about lately. Grandma is still dead, Sable is still alive, and Rebecca still isn't over this. Cold weather is back, and the coworker that I thought had quit is still employed. Ugh x 100! But on the plus side, as of today, only TWO WEEKS LEFT until NCIS's 200th episode. From the promo pictures and cast list, it definitely looks to be unique, if nothing else.

After Hebrew school last Saturday (Rabbi W was our guest teacher, and he brought a slide show of photos from his trip to Israel last year and talked to the kids about why each landmark was important to us as Jews – yay, Rebecca didn't have to do any teaching!) we had Torah study, and guess who got called on to read the hardest verses of the weekly Torah portion? Exodus 6:13-25 is nothing but one unpronounceable name after another! Ugh!

There might be something on the horizon I need to save for, so I've been trying to eat out less. It helped that I finished reading Angela's Ashes last week. It really made me appreciate what I have. There are scenes where the main character and his brothers have to beg, dig in dumpsters, and lick the crumbs and grease off fast-food wrappers. It was so depressing – especially because it was a true story – but also surprisingly funny and vibrant. And it made my life look damn luxurious. I'm now reading The Help, and it is very good too. I'm constantly guessing on what's going to happen next. I really hope I can read more books and less fanfiction in 2012 than I did in 2011, so please comment and recommend some books to me!

I've been trying to eat out less, but I cracked when I saw a Subway commercial for their new pulled pork sandwich. I tried one for dinner last night, and it was so messy and delicious and divine. I loved pulled pork, and I might not be able to stay away from it!
rebecca_in_blue: (red riding hood)
At services last Friday, our rabbi and temple president had arranged for a group from a local church to visit. One of my cousins happened to be among them, and to my utter mortification, I didn't even recognize her! She actually had to tell me who she was. In my defense, I hadn't seen her since Easter, and it can throw you when you see somebody you know in a place you didn't expect.

This morning, there was another session of the temple's Sunday school (the one Rebecca somehow got roped into teaching) and to my surprise, it was fun for both me and the kids. The other teachers and I showed them a movie about Hanukkah and helped them with a craft project where we made menorahs and edible dreidels. I brought several of my cute, colorful little dreidels (which you can see here) for them to play with, and they were a BIG hit - so much so that I was worried I wouldn't get them back! We decided to save the chocolate gelt for when Hanukkah is actually here, so instead the kids played with Hershey Kisses.

Still, it's hard not to feel out of my league there. The other teachers all have so much more experience with kids, and their Hebrew/knowledge of Judaism in general is way better than mine. I've never formally studied Hebrew and haven't even been officially Jewish for six months! But I'm secretly terrified that if I don't push myself to try new experiences, I'll end a mean, bitter old lady like the temple secretary (whom all the kids - and me - are scared of).

I came home with a bag of marshmallows leftover from the edible dreidels, and Sara said, "What's that? Marshmallows made from the blood of the Christian children you killed?"

Sara and I are reading Children in the Holocaust and World War II: Their Secret Diaries. It's been very good. Anne Frank is easily the most famous Holocaust diarist known here, but in Israel and some European countries, there are others who are just as well-known. Eva Heyman's diary has been the hardest for me to read so far. Sara read one that mentioned the Anschluss and asked me what it was. I tried to explain it by reminding her that it was referenced in The Sound of Music.

Sara: Uncle Max was screwed at the end of that movie, wasn't he?
Me: Uncle Max? Why?
Sara: 'Cause he was a Jew.
Me: Uncle Max wasn't a Jew. Hello, if he was a Jew, why didn't he leave Austria with the von Trapp family?
Sara: Maybe he didn't know what was going to happen.
Me: Uncle Max was not trash stupid, and he was not a Jew.
Sara: Hello, "I'll miss the money I could've made"? That's how you know he's a Jew.
{Something occured to me later about Uncle Max: Jewish? No. But gay? Possibly, and that also would've left him screwed at the end of the movie.}

P.S. God bless the radio stations that are still playing regular, non-Christmas music! I think the only Christmas song left that I'm not sick of is "Christmastime Is Here."
rebecca_in_blue: (pursed lips)

As soon as I got out of bed today, I got a call from a staffing company, telling me that a job had opened up unexpectedly, and could I come in for an interview, like, right now? So I very quickly got dressed, walked Sable, and googled directions. The actual job (if I get it) won't be far from my apartment, but for some strange reason, the interview was held in Middle of Nowhere, LA -- a good forty-minute drive away! The town was literally a map-dot in the middle of miles and miles of empty, shadeless fields. The most boring drive you can possibly imagine.

After I finally got there, there was an interview, then an assessment test, typing test, safety video, and form after form to fill out. It all took a long time, and fool that I am, I got ready in such a hurry that I forgot to bring something to eat on the car ride. I don't think the lady interviewing me could hear my stomach rumbling.

I like to think the interview went well (she asked me when I could start and had me fill out an I9), but every time I think that, I don't get the job, so that's probably what will happen this time. I don't know how, but I woke up today with a cut on my lip that made me look like a domestic abuse victim and almost certainly didn't entice them to hire me. * It's very depressing to think that all that time and gas will be a waste.

I was so hungry when I finally left that I drove to the Dairy Queen down the street (one good thing about small towns -- they have Dairy Queens) and stuffed myself. Yummy, but I guess my digestive system wasn't ready because I felt absolutely exhausted on the ride back.

I finally paid my massive library fine, only to discover that library doesn't have a copy of Homecoming! Wanting to check out that book was the whole reason I paid my fine. I read about half of it earlier this year, and not knowing how it ends is driving me crazy. But I did buy My Jesus Year while I was there, and it's been very good and funny so far. I'm already learning a lot. Despite the misleading title, it's a Jew book, and not the messianic kind, either.

The weather has been very hot and dry lately. No sign of rain, or even a breeze. A small hurricane or tropical storm would feel so good right now!

* No offense meant to actual domestic abuse victims. I will pray for them today.

rebecca_in_blue: (pursed lips)

Today is the last Friday before Mardi Gras, but while driving down the main street this afternoon en route to the bank, I still wondered why all the stores and businesses were putting barriers up in their parking lots. It didn't click until I was sitting in temple, and the lay leader announced that we would have an abbreviated service (Yeah right. Christmas Eve and New Year's Eve were supposed to be abbreviated services, too. I'm beginning to suspect there is no such thing at that temple.) so we could get out before the parade started. As Enzo says in The Art of Racing in the Rain -- a book I just finished, told from the point-of-view of a dog about as old and decrepit as Sable -- "The light switch! It's either on or it's off."

I was a little late to services this evening. We usually start when we hear the cathedral bells tolling six, and I arrived after the bells rang. We happened to be working off programs instead of the siddur, and this was the exchange when I walked in:

Karen: Sees me walking in. "Michael, we have a guest. Give her a program."
Michael: Looks around, sees me, is confused. "What guest?"
Someone: "Rebecca."
Michael: "Rebecca is not a guest."
Me: Crushed :(
Michael: "She is family. Paul!"
Paul: Jumps a little.
Michael: "Scoot over so Rebecca can sit down!"
Me: Well, aww :)


The temple gates. I walk through these every Friday to put my bike in the back. I'm still working on getting that background blurry.

rebecca_in_blue: (worried eyes)

I tossed and turned all night last night. I very occasionally have nights when I lie awake for hours worrying for over the most ridiculous, pointless things (things I have no power to change, things that are a long way in the future) and as much as I try, I can't make myself stop worrying or go back to bed. Yes, things are better in the morning, and all my worries seem stupid by the light of day, but still, it really bothers me when I have nights like that. I'm not the only one who does this sometimes, right? I think we all have fears that seem scarier at night.

It didn't help that immediately before going to bed, I checked my work schedule and realized that I actually had to work today, when I thought I was off. (I got Thursday and Friday confused; my day off is tomorrow.) How much does it suck to discover you have to get up early and go to work when you had planned on sleeping in? Ugh. I guess it's a good thing I checked the schedule.

On top of that, immediately before going to bed, I read the first eleven chapters of I'd Know You Anywhere, a book I found so disturbing that it made my stomach clench, but it was so well-written that I literally couldn't put it down.

Finally, sometime in a.m., I had to turn on my lamp and read the most boring Torah passages I could find until I felt tired again. Sable actually got out of his bed and came to sleep on the floor next to my bed.

I'm not sure what to make of it. Changes might be on the horizon, and I'm not sure what to make of those, either. Strangely enough, there are some situations where knowledge of child actresses is absolutely no help. Maybe I should go back to St. John's Wort.

rebecca_in_blue: (bemused shrug)
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I just got up and looked over my/our bookshelves, and people would probably wonder, "Who lives here? Adults or little girls?" Sure, we've got some big thick grown-up books (Watership Down, The Red Tent, Moby-Dick) but we also have several books from each of the following series: American Girl, Anne of Green Gables, The Baby-Sitters Club (in English and French!), Calvin & Hobbes, Childcraft, Harry Potter, Indian in the Cupboard, Little House, and Winnie-the-Pooh (used to have all three Wayside School books but don't seem to anymore), as well as books by Lois Lowry and Judy Blume, several collections of children's poetry, and three old middle-school reading textbooks.

Interspersed by stuff like Guide to Getting It On, The Last Word: The New York Times Book of Obituaries and Farewells, and The Unabridged Journals of Sylvia Plath.

Heaven only knows what conclusions they'd draw.
rebecca_in_blue: (happy smile)

After years of constantly losing them, finding them, losing them, and finding them again, I seem to have finally lost my glasses. As in, for good. I still can't really believe it, because after being lost, dropped, sat on, stepped on, etc. for so long, I thought those glasses could survive anything. I've been wearing my contacts almost exclusively, so it's not a huge deal. The only time I really miss them is when I walk Sable before bed, because I don't want to bother putting them in just for that, but I'm a wuss and don't like going outside at night without being able to see well.

Eva's birthday was yesterday; she turned 13. I did some calculating and figured out that by the time she turns 20, my aunt and uncle will have had at least one teenage daughter for almost twenty. Solid. Years.

I finally finished reading Shutter Island and watched the movie, but I still haven't started Mockingjay (the final book of the Hunger Games trilogy, just released last week) yet. I think Sara and I are each waiting for the other one to buy a copy. And Athena is waiting for either of us to buy it. But for some reason, I'm not as anxious to read this one as I was with the second book, Catching Fire. Maybe because it's the last book and I don't want it to be over. Or maybe because the bad-fanfiction ending of Harry Potter scarred me for life. *shudder*

I'm so glad fall is (almost) here. Fall is the best season for bike riding, and I hope to enjoy as much of it as I can before winter sets in, because winter is the fucking worst season for it. To quote my calendar of Emily Dickinson poetry (I used to absolutely hate her stuff, but for some reason, she's grown on me in recent years):
     And thus, without a Wing
     Or service of a Keel
     Our Summer made her light escape
     Into the Beautiful

 
Best of all, fall means the Season 8 premiere of NCIS is closer! than! ever!

rebecca_in_blue: (subtle sigh)
Mom, Ben, Adam, and I took a trip to Houston on Saturday, and unlike most trips anywhere with my family, it was actually enjoyable, even though it's a lot frickin' colder in Houston than it is here. Easily the best part was eating lunch at Star Pizza in the village. We had an appetizer of baked goat cheese with olive oil and tomato on bread, and I had pizza with mozerella, feta, and goat cheese. It was so good, when I finished, I pushed back my chair and said, "I pity everyone in the world who wasn't me while I was eating that meal." (Okay, writing about it was a mistake. I just ate dinner, but now I'm hungry again!)

After lunch, we went to the Chocolate Bar, Candylicious, and Half-Price Books. I hadn't bought anything at Half-Price in a long time, but on this visit I actually found some good stuff: a copy of Robert Browning's The Pied Piper of Hamelin with illustrations by Kate Greenaway (which I didn't buy, even though her pictures were awesome, because I already have that poem in at least one of my poetry anthologies, and I really only like the second half of it), and GK's Good Poems for Hard Times. I also found a copy of RLS's A Child's Garden of Verses, which I didn't buy because it wasn't a very good copy, but it reminded me of how much I want that book. Think I'll buy one online. 

After that we went to the movies and then out to dinner with Mark and Vickie. We ate at some seafood resteraunt, and even though I don't really like seafood, I did drink my first ever Shirley Temple! It was Sprite with cherry syrup -- very yummy and quite worthy of Shirley's name.

Things I will never like: The sound of dishes banging together. It's absolutely the worst sound in the world. When I wash dishes or put them in the cabinet, I always try to do it with finesse, not to make noise. My mom always did it as loudly as possible (and probably still does), to the point where I either had to leave the kitchen or grab the dishes from her and put them up myself. Words cannot describe how much I hate that noise.

rebecca_in_blue: (pursed lips)

Sara and I have been very caught up in Conan O'Brien's late-night drama. We watched his show every night this week, and I'm almost tempted to watch Leno's first show back just to boo him when he enters. (Seriously, has anybody ever liked that douchebag, or found him funny? Even Carson didn't want him to get the show!) Conan's farewell show last night was surprisingly heartfelt and touching. I've been watching him since I was about 12, and I still have a fan letter that I wrote to him when I was 14 (but never mailed, and thank goodness for that, because it's horrifyingly badly-written and cheesey).

This week I finally did what I've been meaning to do for so long and opened a CD. I got a damn good rate on it, and it matures in just six months! It's the first real step I've taken to me and Sara buying a second vehicle. Even if I have to roll pennies and collect cans every day -- and I probably will -- I really want to make this happen. (Besides, as long as Grandma is still alive, there's no way I'll ever go hungry. She called me today begging me to come over and eat spaghetti. Unfortunately I was stuck at work all day, but maybe tomorrow.) Sharing the truck between us has been so damn hard, sometimes I just want to cry. I mean, how are we supposed to go anywhere or do anything when just getting to and from work is hard?


Tonight I finished reading Crow Lake, this good book Sara forced me to read lent me. Next I'd really like to read Plain Beautiful, which is a biography of former child actress Peggy Ann Garner that gotten some good reviews, but I can't find a cheap copy of it. Maybe I'll buy it with my tax refund. It feels a lot closer than it seems, because the tax software at our store has been selling like crazy. I usually wait until April to file mine. Are the pants I bought for work tax deductible?

P.S. Okay, Jay Leno has one (one!) endearing quality. He's done some super adorable interviews with Abigail Breslin.
rebecca_in_blue: (dishevelled hair)
I haven't barfed or gotten a serious stomachache in so long that I'd forgotten how bad they can really be. Until this morning. I ate some Lay's potato chips yesterday, yes, but I really don't think I ate enough to merit that. I usually try to watch how many of those things I eat, for precisely this reason.

I finished Catching Fire last week. Forget about biting my nails. That ending was so intense that it had me chewing on my fingers. Sara and I are making a file of useful information, hidden clues, character lists, and things to keep track of for the third and last book. We're also trying to make a map of Panem, but since neither of us know too much about American geography, it's tough. Suzanne Collins has put so much forethought into the story that she must have created a map; if only she'd release it. But she probably doesn't want us to know where District 13 is.

The weather has been so cool and pleasant lately. I think I'll log off right now to go for a bike ride. Or go lie in bed. That damn stomachache woke me up so early this morning.
rebecca_in_blue: (trembling hand)

There are few things I hate more at work then opening the day after I've closed. Yesterday we didn't get out of the store until 11, and this morning I had to be there at nine. Back to school... well, words can't even describe how bad it was. Yesterday and Tuesday, I seriously considered quitting. At least it will all be over by the end of this week. That is the only thought that's kept me sane.

Luckily, after the insanity of yesterday, I got just the pick-me-up I needed when Sara came home from work.
Sara: Guess what this is?
[Sara holds up some book. There is no title on it, and I couldn't read it anyway because I'd taken my contacts out.]
Me: What is it?
Sara: It's Catching Fire!
I almost grabbed it right out of her hand. Catching Fire is the sequel to The Hunger Games; I read it last year and from the very first page, I literally could not put the thing down. Sara and I have been waiting for Catching Fire all year. It hasn't even been released yet, but she got an advanced copy because she has Power. I have not been this excited about a book since Harry Potter! I'm signing out right now to go read it.

rebecca_in_blue: (subtle sigh)

My Book Awards for 2008 are finished! They didn't come out quite the way I expected this year. I didn't read a lot in 2008, but that also means I didn't read a lot of bad books, which eliminated a lot of dead weight and made it pretty hard to choose the worst in each category. Eventually I had to get rid of the Worst Overall category, something I'd never before, because nothing I read was really that bad.

Award-Winning Books of 2008 )



All Books of 2008 )

rebecca_in_blue: (happy smile)
\Just like Santa's elves, I working late into the night on December 23. But instead of making toys, I was making pecan pie muffins. I had wanted to make four dozen (two for all the relatives at Grandma's house on Christmas Eve, one for Teresa, and one for CJ & Company) but I ended up making just three. To top it all off, I ran out of muffin cups around 2 a.m. and had to drive over to Mom's house for some more. I hope I can make another batch for CJ & Co. soon.

I had to work on Christmas Eve, which sucked, and I didn't get to spend much time at Grandma's house. (The title of this journal was what I wanted to say to our last few customers.) After I got off I took a batch of muffins to Teresa and spent the evening reading this amazing book called The Hunger Games. I literally have not been able to put it down since I started it, and if I finish it before the end of the year, which I'm sure I will, it's got a good shot at Best Overall in my Book Awards. (Although really, I haven't read a lot this year, and my Book Awards are going to be pretty shabby. I'm a bad English major.) It's very dark and disturbing, and it reminds me a bit of Shirley Jackson's The Lottery. Both made me wonder how the author ever imagined a society that was so barbaric, where humanity had become so completely inhumane. I've taken several creative writing courses, and I think of myself as a creative writer sometimes, but I could never think up something so dark.

Don't die of shock now, but on Christmas Eve night, Rebecca ... went to a Midnight Mass! I'm still surprised the cathedral didn't collapse when I walked in. Athena went with me; she's Mormon and hasn't attended a Mass for at least ten years, while I hadn't been to an English-language one since my Senior Farewell Mass in high schoool, back in 2003. This one was a little different and longer than a regular Mass, but I was surprised by how much came back to me. The cathedral was, as it always has been, intimidatingly beautiful, the smell of incense was intoxicating, and the music was outstanding. I heard a new song called "Noe, Noe" that I really loved.

Best of all, at the Mass there was a French bishop visiting from Paris! He said a blessing in French at the very end, and afterwards I had a short conversation with him in French. I was so nervous! I know that my French has rusted rapidly since I left the country, and talking with a native speaker on short notice was very scary. But he seemed impressed, told me my French was very good.

Today Sara and I slept in late, opened our presents, and ate a big brunch. I good quite a lot of good gifts this year; Sara gave three movies (Corrina, Corrina, The Secret Garden, and A Little Princess -- the 1995 version with Liesel Matthews, I already own the 1939 version with Shirley Temple, Teresa), two Barack Obama magnets, and a really nice 365-day calendar of France. One of my gifts for her was the exact same brand and style of calendar, only of Ireland instead of France, so that was a cool surprise.

We also invited Athena over for a big brunch of cinnamon rolls, scrambled eggs, sausage, bacon, and chocolate milk. We all ate until we were stuffed and have spent the rest of the day loafing around and being lazy. I'm going to try to convince Sara to watch one of the movies she gave me tonight, although I don't think she really wants to see them.
rebecca_in_blue: (raised eyebrows)

Attention to all you parents who take pictures of your kids to put on Christmas cards and think they're cute. Well, maybe they are, but they will never, ever be as cute as this picture taken for a Christmas card in the 1950's:

Click Here! )



I went back to the house today to pick up my and Sara's Christmas ornaments. I really love getting them out of storage every year. I've had the same ornaments since I was little: a really ugly candy cane I made in kindergarten, an ornament of Mary and Jesus, also made in kindergarten, a miniature blackboard from my elementary school, a white bear from the summer camp I used to attend, a carousel horse, and a silver rocking horse (my favorite). BUT I wasn't able to find the Christmas ornament that I bought at a street fair in Villers-Cotterets and mailed home last year; it was a bear in a Santa suit, holding a mini Eiffel Tower. I had assumed my family put it with the rest of the ornaments, but I looked through every box and didn't find it. I am NOT happy about this.

Anyway, we haven't hung up any of our ornaments yet because we don't have a tree. Sara didn't want one at first, but I think I might be able to talk her into getting a small artificial one, if we can find one at a cheap price. I strung up our stockings in the living room (We don't have one for Sable! How crazy is that? I'll have to get him one.) but for me it doesn't really feel like Christmas without a tree.

Today my awesome aunt gave us some curtains for our bedroom, so I have taken those off my Christmas list. It took me forever, but I finally got them hung up in the bedroom. They're dark and thick, so I think they'll be excellent at keeping the sunlight out in the mornings.

A few days ago I read a really wonderful children's book, Bird Lake Moon, by Kevin Henkes. Henkes is best known for Olive's Ocean, which won the Newberry Honor medal a few years ago; I read that too and while it was good, I think Bird Lake Moon is far better. The style is simple yet powerful, so that every word seems important, and even brief interactions are full of meaning. (A good example is the short conversation between Mitch and the girl he meets while looking for Jasper; it's fleeting but lingers in Mitch's mind and the reader's.) It reminded me very much of The Goats, by Brock Cole, which is one of my all-time very favorite kid/teen books.

rebecca_in_blue: (happy)

Part One:
This excerpt from Julie Andrews's autobiography, Home, which I'm currently reading: "I was offered the title role in Cinderella at the London Palladium. The theater has tremendous prestige and a great history. Almost every American headliner has performed at the Palladium. It holds more than two thousand people, yet standing on the stage, one feels one can touch the entire audience. It is immaculate -- nothing like the tacky vaudeville theaters I'd been playing in." (She was seventeen at this time.)

Part Two:
My ticket stub to the performance of The Sound of Music that Sara and I saw in London.

We saw The Sound of Music in the same theater where Julie Andrews got one of her first big breaks! That is one of the fucking coolest things ever.

We survived Hurricane Gustav with ease. Our electricity went out for a little while (on Tuesday, after the hurricane was over, for some odd reason), but I was out bike riding when that happened. This morning Sara and I heard an ad on the radio that said something about "the wake of such a powerful storm," and Sara burst out laughing.

I sold my cans today and got twenty dollars for them. I used that to treat myself to some goat cheese (of course).

rebecca_in_blue: (patient)

I've just started reading a book that I found on my aunt's bookshelf called Last Breath. Each chapter is about a different cause of death; so far I've read the first three, which cover hypothermia, drowning, and mountain sickness. It's sounds depressing, but it's actually made me appreciate being alive (which is the sort of book I need right now).

My aunt, uncle, and family will be back sometime tomorrow (Tuesday). First my aunt called me and told me to expect them Tuesday afternoon. Then my cousin called and told me to expect them around two a.m. Tuesday morning. Then my uncle called and told me to expect them much later Tuesday morning. I'll be glad to see them again, but I'm really dreading leaving their house; I had been looking forward to house-sitting for them for most of the summer, and Sara and I have enjoyed ourselves here. I gave the place a pretty thorough cleaning today as a sort of welcome back present for them.

rebecca_in_blue: (bemused shrug)

Our cat, Mary Andromeda, had two kittens last month -- Gertrude (black) and Edith Piaf (black and white) -- and they're still too feral to let us touch them, although I've been Edith Piaf has let me get pretty close to her. But for some strange reason, they both ran into the house the other night. We managed to catch Edith Piaf in the dining room and let her back outside. Gertrude somehow got all the way to our room, and when we finally caught her, she scratched and hissed and practically jumped out of my hands. They were both scared to death, and I'm sure the experience has traumatized them for life. Adam was off somewhere when it happened (probably wandering outside at night, which is his favorite hobby), and when he got back I told him he'd missed all the excitement.

I just finished reading The Seer of Shadows, by Avi, who writes pretty great young adult historical fiction. It's meant to be scary, and I'm a wuss, so it was certainly enough to creep me out at 2 am. To distract myself from it, I started reading Jessi and the Dance School Phantom instead and stayed up till 4 am. Which wasn't the best decision, because I had to get up at 10 yesterday for a job interview. But in spite of my sleep deprivation, I like to think the interview went well. I would really like the job, but from what I could tell, there are a lot of applicants. The people who interviewed me said they'll be making a decision within two weeks.

Sara and I rented movies last night: X-Men 3 (which we watched only to see if it was as bad as we remembered, and it was), Cloverfield (which we're going to watch tonight), and Rodgers & Hammerstein's Cinderella from 1965. We laughed until we cried.

Sara is off from work tomorrow, so I'm hoping we'll get over to see JC & Company.

rebecca_in_blue: (Default)
I woke up hellishly early this morning to take the civil service test, which I found rather easy and sort of enjoyed. The proofreading section was fun. All in all, though, I really didn't put as much effort into my job search as I should have last week. Perhaps that's why I had such a depressing dream when I took a nap earlier this evening. In my dream, it was December, I was sitting on the loveseat in the living room, and I could hear Christmas songs playing on the radio in the kitchen. I thought it was so strange that it was already December, because it still felt like I had just gotten back from France. I still hadn't found a job, I was still living with Mom, and I remember thinking that one year ago, last December, I was at teaching a lesson about Christmas with Marie-France. (When she asked if I had a good Christmas song we could play, I suggested "Louisiana Christmas Day." Bad idea.)

Sara and I went to the library this afternoon, something I've been meaning to do since I got back. It was great to be back in a library of books that I could actually read. There are three books on my to-read list right now: Nim's Island, My Fifteen Minutes (autobiography of Sybil Jason), and Child Star (autobiography of Shirley Temple). This evening Sara and I watched The Children's Hour, which was somewhat disappointing. It bordered on a talkathon, and two child actresses were mediocre; I've heard that Bonita Granville and Marcia Mae Jones are much more impressive in These Three, the '30s version of the film.

Me to Sara: "If you ever tried to make a YouTube video, you would realize how much work it really is, and you'd go back to your baby name lists where you belong!"

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rebecca_in_blue

March 2013

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