rebecca_in_blue: (worried eyes)
Yesterday I woke up early enough to ride my bike to work, but it was so freaking cold outside that I just couldn't do it. But it should be warming up soon. I want to get back in the habit of biking more because there might be something on the horizon to save money for. Sara and I were planning to move this year, and we might be doing it soon. Like, within the next two months or so. Maybe that isn't soon to some people, but it sure feels like it to me. I'm trying not to stress. I had a dream last night that we moved and it all went really well, which I think is a good sign.

I'm excited about possibly living in a bigger city, but this will likely be a long-distance move. Which means I'll have to leave my temple. I can't even think about that right now. My congregation has become like a second family to me. Then there's the fact that we'll probably be moving before I've been matched with Briana for a year, which is what BBBS asks of you. :\

Sara and I went shopping on the same day and we each bought milk and cheese. Consequently, I've been eating too much dairy and my stomach hurts. In other food news, one of my Sassy Jewish Grandmothers brought a laundry basket full of home-grown lemons to services on Friday, and I just about picked up the whole basket and walked out with it! They are so, so, so big and juicy and delicious. And our mom gave us a bag of strawberries that are really good, too. Hmm, it just occurred to me -- maybe it's all the acid that's making my stomach hurt?

Or maybe it's the thought of leaving my temple.


As the winter dies, the Earth is brought to life
And a thousand merchant ships sail to find
A worthy village to land and start again
With one more year for a man to change his ways
{From "Winter Dies," by Midlake}
rebecca_in_blue: (trembling hand)
600th LJ entry and 1st entry from our new apartment! On our second to last night in Smallpartment, Sara and I watched Big Trouble in Little China on the couch, while I ate pickles and oreos and she recited the entire movie from memory. :)

I was really impressed with how much Sara and I managed to move by ourselves. We only had to get help from male relatives to move one of the beds and the couch (we are the proud embarrassed owners of the heaviest couch in town). Things kept banging against my legs as we were moving them, and now I have so many bruises that I almost can't put my hand down between them! But at least the weather was cool. Moving during the heat of summer is the worst.

Moving was hard work -- and we still have a lot of unpacking to do -- but I think it will be worth it. Our new apartment is so much nicer and bigger than Smallpartment. And of course, it's on the second floor, too. Minus the few months that I spent in France, I haven't lived on the ground floor since the blessed day I moved out of Mom's house. Our new neighborhood is not quite as nice, but our old neighborhood was really too nice to be duplicated. I haven't been bike-riding around here yet. For the last few days, it's felt like every second when I wasn't working, I was either eating, sleeping, packing, or carrying boxes up and down the stairs. Ugh!

*collapses*
rebecca_in_blue: (happy smile)
This will probably be the last post I make from this apartment. Today, between Yom HaShoah events, I signed the lease and got the keys to our new place. It's still kinda hard to believe that we're moving. When I woke up this morning, Sara said, "I can't believe we're moving tomorrow. And I don't think this apartment believes it, either." Haha. True to our procrastinating nature, we left everything to the last minute! I did put a very small dent in moving things into our new place, but I wasn't able to carry much with my skinny arms -- and it didn't take long before sweat was dripping off me!

I will be glad to see the last of "Smallpartment" -- as Sara and I have decided to refer back to this one in the future -- but I don't want to make it seem like living here was a totally bad experience. There are two big things to be thankful for:

#1) Living within walking distance of Grandma, right up until the day she moved out of her old house. Now that Grandma has died and the house where she lived for 47 years is sold and being remodeled, I realize how precious this was. I will always treasure my memories of all those lazy afternoons spent walking Sable (who's also gone now, the poor old puppy) over to her house, visiting with her, eating her cooking, watering her garden, and swinging on her porch swing. It was a blessing to have her so close by during her final years.

#2) Living within biking distance of the only Jewish temple in a 50-mile radius. Sara says I wouldn't have converted to Judaism without NCIS (which led me to writing fanfiction, which led me to learning more about Judaism for a Ziva-centric fic I wrote). But I honestly don't think that I would've converted -- or at least, not at this time in my life -- if I hadn't lived in such close proximity to the temple. (It's almost literally right around the corner from this apartment, and so easy to reach on my bike.) I've always been interested in Judaism, but riding my bike past the temple all the time was what really gave the courage to walk through those doors for the first time. And I've never regretted it. What a blessing.

I have to admit, I'm a bit nervous about leaving Smallpartment. I guess change is always hard. I pray that our new place will bring us blessings, too. It's appropriate that we should move so soon after Passover.



The Lord said to Moses, "Remember that I have brought you out of Egypt by a mighty hand." And the Lord led the people out of Egypt by way of the desert, which is by the Red Sea. The Lord went before them to show the way, by day in a pillar of a cloud, and by night in a pillar of fire, that He may be with them at all times. -- Exodus 13.
rebecca_in_blue: (excited grin)

Greetings from our new apartment!

Today our landlord replaced our lock, we got our cable and Internet hooked up, and I went grocery shopping with my foodstamp money and bought us a lot of food, including goat cheese and Kroger-brand pickles! And I bought Sara some tequila and lime salsa and David-brand sunflower seeds, which I guess are her version of goat cheese and pickes. I jokingly told Sara that now we probably won't leave our apartment for days. Actually I'll probably leave soon to go bike-riding. Our neighborhood is the kind that just begs you to go bike-riding through it.

We haven't thought of a name for our new apartment yet (the last two were "Tarpartment," in honor of the tar dripping down the walls and "Slobpartment," after the slobby roommates). Judging strictly from what is inside the apartment, this one isn't quite as nice as Tarpartment; it's older and doesn't have a dishwasher or central air-conditioning. But in every other aspect, this one is way better than Tarpartment. The complex is smaller, the neighborhood is infinitely nicer, we actually have landlords instead of slumlords, and so far there have been no black people blaring loud rap music at all hours or Mexican families living ten people to one apartment.

rebecca_in_blue: (bemused shrug)

I've been unbelievably busy for the past several days, moving Sara and me into our apartment and unpacking all our stuff. I've gotten almost everything done now. Sara bought us a nice new TV, our aunt gave us an awesome combination VHS/DVD player (I dropped it hard while moving it in, but it still works), and our computer, which was in storage for over a year, is still running fine. The only things we don't have are cable and Internet (we'll have those as of Monday) and a couch. Uncle John came by yesterday and moved in our box spring, set up our bed frame, screwed in my clothes bar, and fixed two legs that had broken off my dresser.

On Wednesday morning I went downtown to apply for foodstamps. I qualified for $421 worth! So I'm going to go shopping tomorrow and buy us a lot of groceries.

The weather is very nice today, sunny and cool with no clouds in the sky. I'm typing this at Mom's house, and I just let Sable outside, so now when I look out the window I can see him rolling around in the middle of the lawn, having a swell time.


And on the off-chance that anyone who reads this journal wants to get me a birthday present, I've compiled a list:
Asthma medication, Singulair and/or Albuterol. I'm hoping to go by the community clinic next week and get a prescription.
Dog nail trimmers, for Sable. We've been meaning to get these forever. He really needs them, poor dog.
Batteries for my digital camera.

rebecca_in_blue: (dozing off)

I've been meaning to post all week, but I've been supremely busy (which is kinda nice after weeks of unproductive laziness). Sara and I are moving into our own apartment, and since she's been working so much, I'm doing most of the organizing, packing, etc. Our room is a chaotic mess right now, and it's pretty impossible to find anything. Case in point: I was up late last night looking for my inhaler, which I needed, and the last train ticket I bought in Villers-Cotterets, which I absolutely didn't need, but I want to know that I still have it. I'm looking forward to getting us all moved in and decorating our new apartment. It's a nice large one-bedroom, a stone's throw away from our grandma's house.

I'm a little worried about money and how we'll get by on our own, so I plan to redouble my job-hunting efforts. I'm going to look into part-time work, because it'll probably be easier to find and I know I can get by on it. (My mom once told me that I'm the cheapest person she ever knew and that I can survive "on nothing." I guess she meant it as a compliment.) As of right now Sara is paying for our rent, and just about everything else, which I feel guilty about, although I'm sure she can afford it. My new goal is to have a job by my birthday.

We're still reading Julie Andrews's autobiography, which I love. She writes as eloquently and beautifully as she talks. Sara and I were saying the other night that the only thing that could make it better would be an audiobook of her reading it.

rebecca_in_blue: (bemused shrug)

I'm almost halfway done with Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows. So far I've stuck to my goal of reading one chapter a day, and I'm still keeping a journal of it, which I write in almost every day (which is why I've haven't been writing in this journal so much lately).

I'm back at Mom's house for now. Moving out of Slobpartment went smoothly and certainly much better than moving out of Tarpartment, although Mom was late arriving in Baton Rouge because she'd stayed up late the night before finishing Harry Potter (every Potter fan in the world is probably done with it by now except me). Although I didn't hate living in Slobpartment, I was not sorry to see the last of it. My three roommates there were nice girls but incredibly wasteful -- hence my name for the place. One of them bought milk and let it sit in the refrigerator until it was lumpy. One of them made brownies and let them sit on the counter until they were rock-hard. One of them bought a chicken dinner, took one bite, and threw the rest away. I never said anything to them about it, but it really angered me. Wasting food like that is an insult to everyone in the world who doesn't have enough to eat.

I finally found a temporary job, which is a huge relief. I'm working at the bookstore at the university here for the first few weeks of the fall semester; they hired me right away when I told them that I was a veteran of the LSU bookstore. My first day was today, and although it was difficult to wake up so early and stand up for so long, it feels good to be earning money again. The air conditioner in the bookstore was broken, but it wasn't as bad as you'd expect of Louisiana in August -- several were fans were on, and one them was blowing right on me. But a broken air conditioner is probably the least of that school's problems. From what I saw, there was no landscaping or custodial services, litter was everywhere, outdoor benches were covered in bird shit, and the public restrooms in the student union were filthy. Most of all, it was unbelievably small. The bookstore where I work only has one floor, and its textbook department is less than a fourth of LSU's. When I first started at LSU, I regretted not going to this college instead, but now I'm thankful that I didn't. It doesn't even have a French Department! The French education that I would have received there couldn't compare to what I learned at LSU. (Sara said that when I ring up their totals, I should add to my customers, "Getting an education, priceless," like in the MasterCard commercials.)

Speaking of my French education, my departure for France is drawing frighteningly near. We're making a trip to the Visa Consulate in Houston tomorrow to apply for my visa, and I'll probably be buying my airplane ticket soon. More on that as it develops.

rebecca_in_blue: (Default)

There was a heavy thunderstorm this afternoon, and since I left the apartment without my cotton-candy-colored umbrella, I was soaked by the time I'd finished running all my errands. So I ended up taking my shoes off, rolling up my jeans, and walking across the Parade Grounds on campus singing "It's What You Believe In," from Peter Pan (although I realize now that Shirley Temple's "I Love to Walk in the Rain" would have been more appropriate). I attracted some weird stares, but I didn't care.

It's what you believe in when the storm clouds fill the skies
That makes them distressing or a blessing in disguise
If you believe in yourself, no matter what, it will matter not how it pours
Alone in the great outdoors, a glittering, shimmering world is yours
And you'll love it when you find in countless ways
That what you believe in, you can weave into your days

When I got back to the apartment, I found that maintenance was replacing my furniture now rather than wait until I move out in two days. I was angry because it was inconvenient and delayed my packing, but that was before I saw the new bed they put in. It's a very high bed, high enough for me to crawl underneath on my hands and knees. I actually wish that I was staying in this apartment a little longer now, because I really liked being under that bed; it reminded me of sleeping in my closet in Tarpartment, which I still miss sometimes.

Mom is coming to help me move out, but I'm trying to get all my packing done before she gets here (I haven't forgotten that she tried to throw away things that are very important to me when I moved out of my last apartment). I've uncovered some real surprises in the packing process -- things I'd completely forgotten or thought I'd lost or can't believe I kept so long -- and I wonder why I'm such a packrat. I think it's because I grew up in a house where useless things were rarely thrown away. For as long as I can remember, a big battered copy of Gore Vidal's Julian has sat on one of the bookshelves in our living room. Not once have I ever seen anyone open it or even pick it up, but I know it's still sitting on that same dusty bookshelf right now. We're just not the sort of people who like to throw things away.

I'm still chipping away at Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, and so far I've stuck to my goal of reading one chapter a day. I'm also keeping a journal for this book, like I did for the last two, recording what I've read and what I think will happen next. I'm amazed at how much I've written in it so far -- I guess I want to make the most out of the last book.

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