On my 35th Birthday (a bit late)...

It occurred to me, while reading my book earlier, that more than a month has passed and I still haven't talked about my birthday, which was particularly lovely this year. I was in California and so got to spend my birthday with my family for the first time in 14 years. That's pretty cool, particularly since I turned 35 this year.

My sister and folks went out of their way to make my birthday really, really nice. Candi made me homemade mac & cheese (my absolute favorite food, hands down and something she makes really, really well) and my mom barbecued chicken. My cousin, Jennifer, came over to spend the day with us and so did my aunt Pam. Considering I hadn't seen Jenny in like 7 years, it was really good to see her. She even brought me butterscotch blondies, which were amazing. Oh, but the best part was the cake and jello shots.

Candi made me the most beautiful birthday cake. It was lemon-blueberry with lemon pudding filling. She topped it all of with homemade buttercream frosting. When she asked me how I wanted it decorated and I said I wanted basket-weave, I had no idea what I was asking for. I watched her apply the basket-weave and, let me tell you, it is detailed and takes a long time. Check this out...


Candi can bake a cake, y'all! They don't just look amazing, they taste amazing. She really worked hard to make my birthday nice--thanks, Candi!!

She also used her mad scrapbooking skills to make me a really nice birthday card and a pink, glittery zebra stripped bookmark. It was that bookmark, which I'm using to keep my place in Story of O, which I'm reading in real-life-honest-to-God-paper-and-ink-book form. Oh, and she got me a subscription to Cooking Light--this month there's mac & cheese on the cover, score! Mom and dad got me a DVD lighthouse documentary box set, which I have absolutely loved. I also got a gift card for Target, which I used online to buy season one of Downton Abbey on DVD.

But really, being with my family for my 35th birthday was really special for me. The only thing that could have made it more-so would have been being with both my family and Matt. Unfortunately, he was at home, but when I got home we stayed at a really cool hotel (Aloft, Las Colinas) and he brought me not one, but three necklaces. They're exactly what I told him I wanted. He's awesome, even though I expected one, not three. :) But, now I have choices.

It was such a nice birthday that it's going to be hard to top it in the future. So nice that I didn't even mind turning 35!! ;)

An afternoon out...

I've had a little bit to drink, so if this doesn't make sense, blame it on the booze. Matt hates that word, by the way... booze. I'm not completely sure why, but he throws a fit every time I say it. I suppose he's entitled. Anyway, we took a little trip DFW on Monday, which was awesome because I really need to get out of the house more. He took me to eat at Red Lobster--we don't have one in town--then to Barnes and Noble, Total Wine & Liquor, and to Central Market (how I love thee, let me count the ways!). It was really, really nice.

I got a bottle of liquor called Kinky, which is apparently vodka infused with blood orange liqueur, passion fruit, and... er... something else. I don't remember off the top of my head. This stuff is amazing. Like, put a period between every letter A.M.A.Z.I.N.G! I've almost downed the whole bottle, sadly, but that means we have reason to go back. And it's not overly expensive, either, which is nice. Though my mom tells me I shouldn't drink when I'm depressed, since it's a downer. But, when better to drink? I need the booze to make me feel better. :P No, really... I know I shouldn't, but at least I'm not mixing it with anti-depressants, since I'm not taking them right now (even though I should be).

At Barnes and Noble I found a few things... okay, maybe more than a "few things." I got a magnet with a proverb that says, "Just when the caterpillar thought the world was over, it became a butterfly," which, I think, speaks to where I am right now emotionally. I also got a list-making book called List Your Self, which sounds a little strange, I guess, but I couldn't resist. It just seemed like something I could do to really think through some of my issues. I've always been a list-maker, so that should be something I can do to help myself. I also got Story of O by Pauline Réage. Published in 1954, it was the first erotic novel. So far, it's pretty amazing. Some other stuff, too, but nothing worth mentioning.

All in all, the afternoon was nice and it was an outing I needed. Matt was exhausted, since he'd just worked a 36 hour weekend, but he pulled through--finally getting his 21 year old scotch helped smooth over the aches and pains, I think. He said, "my drink is old enough to drink." Ha! Never mind how expensive well-aged scotch is, sheesh! Yesterday, we went bowling (Matt didn't bowl, but I did and so did Mel & Joey). Now, since he's working today, I've just been trying to get a little bit of cleaning done. I've at least managed to run the dishwasher and make myself dinner to metabolize all the liquor--of course, I had starch, so not the best thing, but I'm getting by. Time to go unload and reload the dishwasher. Another 10 loads and everything should be clean. Good night.

Emotion & Motivation

I've been struggling a little bit lately and I'm not really sure why. Matt and I are happy together, in fact, we're getting along remarkably well. We can pay our bills, we go out and do things together from time to time. There's nothing in my life that should make me feel, emotionally, like I'm sinking. But I do. I have absolutely no motivation to do anything. At all. Like, at all. Ever.

If I could just lay on the sofa and read books, and do nothing else, I would. My house is a HUGE disaster. This isn't an understatement. My bathrooms are dirty and so are all of my dishes... and I have a LOT of dishes. The carpet needs to be vacuumed and shampooed, my floors need to be mopped. I probably have 15 loads of laundry to do. The trash needs to go to the dumpster. But I can't seem to do any of it.

The best I've done is to pick up the living room. That's it. My living room is tiny, but I got it mostly picked up. After that, I resumed my position on the sofa and went back to reading. In all, I've read 15 books in the last 3 weeks since coming back home from CA. I couldn't even bring myself to write anything, blog or otherwise.

I suppose it would help if I took my fluoxetine, but I just don't want to. It makes me feel okay, I feel a little bit better when I take it, but the side effects are a bigger problem for me than the problems from not taking them. I'm thinking it's time to talk to my doctor about taking something else. The fluoxetine isn't doing the job anymore. But, I'm procrastinating about making an appointment because she's going to be upset with me about my weight.

But, I'm also trying to do something about my malaise. I think I might try to start getting some exercise. Nothing huge, but maybe go out and walk with my friend. I'm trying to get back into blogging. I'm working out the plotting for a new novel project (I've just about given up on the 50k + words I've written on Love's Daughter), which is why there's a tracker on the sidebar--even though it's empty right now. I'm trying to get my sleep under control. Trying to shower and dress every day, even put on a little bit of make-up. I'm painting my nails (which seems small but makes me feel good).

Oh, and I'm going to try to eat less sugar because I've gained a lot of weight this year. I've even gained another 10 lbs since coming home from CA. Being at my heaviest weight ever isn't helping my emotional state, but I'm a compulsive emotional eater. The very thing that's making me feel worse is how I cope with feeling bad. Work that one out. Clearly, I'm a glutton for punishment.

I just hope that trying to make the efforts to do something about my current emotional state will make a difference. I can't keep doing nothing and I certainly can't keep feeling completely unmotivated to live my life. I'm 35 years old, I should be enjoying my life, not wasting my life on the sofa, stuffing cupcakes in my mouth. I mean, really.

Wish me luck getting my shit together and getting out of this funk. I'm so ready to feel better.

Anakin & the Coffee Grinder...

Funny story about Anakin.


Matt buys coffee beans and brings them home to grind before he brews. Recently, while he was grinding his coffee beans, Anakin started to howl. He's begun howling every time we use the coffee grinder. It takes him a little bit to work up to it, but it's absolutely hilarious. He hasn't howled since he was a puppy, when we tried to teaching him by howling at him. Now, he hears the grinder and howls, without fail.

Makes us want to grind the beans for no reason other than to hear him howl. We're out right now, but Matt plans to get more when we go to Central Market this week.

Adorable!

Back at it...

It seems like the longer I spend away, the harder it is to come back. Which is almost painful because blogging has been my constant pastime for ten years this year--10 years, 4 months to be exact. But every time I came here, since I wrote last, I took one look and went to do something else. So, like everything else in my life, making a change is sometimes the way to cross the distance and get back into a routine. Hence the new, simple but pretty, theme. I bought it from Designer Blogs, then made some small changes to make it fit me better. Not a lot of work, that, because their coding is pristine.

And, I put the blogroll/links back on the sidebar. As much as I liked them stowed neatly away on a page, they're easier to reach like this. They're much handier, and since I use them regularly, I put them back where I could easily find them.

For now, that's it. I've other things to talk about, but this should be enough to close the two month gap and get me back into blogging-mode. Now if it was only so easy to solve the rest of my issues, I'd be set. ;)

PS. Could you share with me what browser you use? I'm having a very minor problem with the way my tagline looks, with regard to spacing, in Chrome. Thanks.