[sticky entry] Sticky: where i am

Jan. 2nd, 2013 01:30 pm
topaz119: (HeartsFromTheBeach)
I cross-post pretty faithfully between DW & LJ. Feel free to comment wherever is easiest/most convenient for you; I am happy to engage across multiple platforms. You can also find me:

[archiveofourown.org profile] topaz (AO3) my fic & bookmarks

[tumblr.com profile] topaz119 (tumblr) fic announcements & endless reblogging of Jeremy Renner-related content whatever catches my eye, mostly fannish but with the occasional science/techonology/space related photo/video

[pinboard.in profile] topaz119 (pinboard) recs/favorites/things that made me happy, crossposted from the rec sets I do on DW/LJ/tumblr, but tagged and sortable.

[livejournal.com profile] topaz119 (livejournal) daily stuff, recs, & fic announcements, xposted with dw (flocked but I'm happy to add you back)

[livejournal.com profile] t_fic (livejournal) (unlocked, sadly out-of-date) my fic, xposted to AO3

I'm also on pinterest (mostly food & holiday stuff, some geek (steampunk & cosplay), occasionally astronomy or science) and goodreads (er, currently I seem to be reading fluff of the cozy mystery or Regency/Victorian persuasion.) Feel free to comment/dm if you want to hook up there.

(updated as of 11/14)
topaz119: (glass candles)
Why must people be so stupid AND arrogant? I mean, this is a question for all days, but I am not especially excited with the human race today. Yes, I have been sending many many emails this week, why do you ask?

Okay, moving on to better things, I am happy to report that I have actually finished a book or two after a long stretch of getting nothing read. (And I actually watched a few movies, too, and am FINALLY starting Star Wars Rebels, though that is going to be a hassle going forward as I have to have a kid hook a computer into the TV for watching purposes.)

finished books
Happiness: The Crooked Little Road to Semi-Ever After, Heather Harpham===A memoir of trying to stay sane through a child’s bone marrow transplant… I have no idea why I picked this up on the way out of the library, but then I read it in an afternoon and it broke my dry streak of not getting more than 20 pages into anything before losing interest, but I’m still not sure why.

On Her Majesty’s Frightfully Secret Service, Rhys Bowen===The latest Lady Georgie cozy mystery and not exactly my favorite. I know the pre-WWII upper class was a small, closed group, but I always have to roll my eyes when everyone Georgie knows shows up in the same small town in another country. Also, I do not approve of Granddad’s new living arrangement, though I’m happy Queenie has found her place. Can we get on with the wedding now?

His Majesty’s Hope, Susan Elia MacNeal===Book #3 of the Maggie Hope series, which I waver back and forth between liking and really being annoyed at. It’s not quite to the level of hate-reading, but honestly, I want to smack characters more often than is probably healthy. So, this one is Maggie undercover in Nazi Germany and is really claustrophobic in atmosphere (which appropriate and well-written, but still a little suffocating.) I have more of the series (I really love the book design & I have been slowly accumulating them through used book sales) so I’m sure I’ll keep on reading, but probably not right now.

Moon Over Soho, Ben Aaronovitch, narrated by Kobda Holdbrook-Smith===Another Peter Grant story, another fabulous read by KHS. Seriously, he is fantastic, not just with Peter’s voice, but all of the characters. Also: jazz vampires. For real.

currently reading
The Darwath Trilogy, Barbara Hambly===Yes, still. I finished the first book, which was an exciting milestone, but then I got sidetracked again. This is my 600+ page omnibus for my reading challenge, so I’m still planning on continuing.

Miss Wonderful, Loretta Chase, narrated by Kate Reading===Oh, so smooth. I feel like I should be taking notes as to how LC sets up an entire character in a single conversation, all without an ounce of info-dump.

The Cooking Gene: A Journey Through African American Culinary History in the Old South, Michael W Twitty==So, D’s family (and thus my kids) have (white (ostensibly)) roots going back hundreds of years in Alabama, North Carolina and Virginia, and I feel like this book is telling more about their history than anything else I’ve ever read. Plus, damn, the recipes are seriously good.
topaz119: (glass candles)
To quote my beloved Inigo, “There is too much—let me sum up.”

/o\ We got caught in a rash of car break-ins last week.

\o/ Whoever did it at least didn’t break any windows, just jimmied the locks.

/o\ Guess who leaves her briefcase, laptop and purse in her (locked) car so she doesn’t forget them the next day?

\o/ The Chase Fraud team is really on-the-ball

/o\ Guess whose favorite Lucky purse was the one that got grabbed? Also, guess whose Kate Spade make-up bag was also grabbed? AND whose favorite lipstick?

\o/ Yay for ebay and people who sell anything b/c I found the purse

/o\ It is, of course, the one Lucky design that’s selling for an outrageous amount. Grr.

This is all rather trivial in the greater scheme of things (and mostly covered by insurance), but gdi, they could have dumped my notepad with all my to-do lists, you know? Like, I get that they wanted the computer, but my menu planning/shopping list is of no use to anyone but me. (On the plus side, at least they didn’t steal my shoes. And I’d finally remembered to get my passport out of my purse.)

Yeah, so that’s where I’ve been lately, running around trying to replace driver’s licenses and re-key the car locks (b/c my spare keys were in the purse) and talking to police detectives. Fun, fun times, kids.
topaz119: (milky way)
So, in lieu of the Weds book meme, I get a little maudlin...

Circling back to DragonCon, some of our perennial favorites are the panels on the Space and Science tracks, which are like a second con within the con—a little cocoon of Really Cool Reality within the sprawling web of Really Cool Altered-Reality that surrounds it. This year’s Space track was especially neat in that the Cassini mission (to Saturn & its moons & rings) is about to end after nearly 20 years of amazing data and new finds. I think one or the other of us were at every Cassini panel this year and were comparing notes the whole weekend. (One of the really cool things was that half the panelists I saw/met were women, which is always such a boost to my (sometimes beaten down) girl-engineer morale.)

Anyway, Cassini is almost out of fuel, and has had its mission extended so far beyond its original parameters that it’s almost unbelievable. In order to avoid any potential contamination of the moons Enceladus and Titan with Earth microbes that might have survived (because they are potentially life-supporting environments), the spacecraft is deliberately being sent on an orbit that will trap it in Saturn’s gravity and burn it up on reentry. It’ll be transmitting on the way down, though, sampling the atmosphere and sending as much data as possible along the way.

This is all happening on Friday. I feel like I’m losing a friend who’s had the best vacation pictures ever. I can’t imagine how the NASA team feels.

eta: Here's all the 'post cards' in a free ebook from NASA: https://saturn.jpl.nasa.gov/resources/7777/?category=graphics
topaz119: (love is love)
We didn’t really get the horrible stuff, but we did get enough to poke something through the roof, sigh. D & #2 got something up in the attic under the leak, but of course we didn’t realize we even had one until I saw water on the bedroom ceiling. D says that’s all he’s seeing even this morning, but it’s enough that we’re going to have to do the whole contractor/insurance/MONEY thing, bleargh.

On the lighter side of life, D and I did make it to NYC this past weekend. I swear, I didn’t know if we were going to go or not right up until we left for the airport, and even then D’s Crohn’s was acting up and we were the absolute last people on the plane (I was standing at the plane door waiting for him and making sure the flight attendant’s knew not to give our seats away to standby.) But we made it, and managed to navigate the hell-hole that LGA is with the construction (Note to self: OMG, fly into JFK next time!) and got to our (seriously beautiful) hotel with enough time to chill for a bit and change for dinner (because yes, I did make reservations at a place with an actual dress code. D was not at all impressed, at least not until we got there and he saw the view, but he still kinda grumbled. He wore shorts the rest of the weekend to make up for the trauma. ::rolls eyes::)

Oh, and on the way to dinner, we nearly ran into Nicki Minaj and her Oscar DeLaRenta ball gown in the elevator. (Nas may or may not have been present, as the gown took up so much room that everyone else was squished to the sides & kind of in the background. She literally had her hands over her head to keep from crushing the appliques. We let that elevator go by, but we ended up following them out of the lobby anyway. She’s tiny in person and the dress was much lighter and colorful than what I've seen in pictures, though that might just be that everything I've seen is against a black background.)

So, yes, dinner was excellent – the River Café, underneath the Brooklyn Bridge on the Brooklyn side of the river. Gorgeous Manhattan views, very good food, excellent service. See also: pricey. But it was the only reservation I had for the weekend, and the hotel was free, so it all balanced out. (D’s eyebrows still reached for the ceiling, though. I hate to tell him what our last dinner at Peter Luger topped out at—he doesn’t think about things like that until it’s right in front of his face, and while RC wasn’t cheap, it was not outrageous for a 3-course dinner in B’lyn.)

The weather was fantastic, so we walked along the Hudson up to One World Trade Center and Tribeca on Saturday, and took the Staten Island ferry on Sunday for views of the Statue of Liberty. I also dragged him into the Morgan Library & Museum and to a fair amount of historical marker reading in lower Manhattan. I tempered that with the bar at the Marriott Marquis for Times-Square-watching during the Auburn/Clemson game and fish & chips for brunch on Sunday at the Dead Rabbit. All in all, it was pretty fun even if we did have to work around hurricanes and feeling not great. BTW, BabyBoy has informed me that Pace & Rutgers are on his college wishlist, so we may be back on a more regular basis.

Most schools in the area are canceled again today (about half the county is without power, but we were fine apart from a few flickers.) I worked from home yesterday (Monday) but am back in the office today. To quote from Jenny Crusie: Nothin' but good times ahead.
topaz119: (#1OTP)
Oh, you guys, I forgot the best part of DragonCon this year: there was a woman walking around who would glitter bomb you in celebration of Carrie Fisher.

♥ ♥ ♥

I have no idea how she even managed to move, because as soon as one person got glittered, word spread like wildfire and there were dozens of people waiting their turn. She threw it on people’s hair, dusted it on shoulders/cleavage, sprinkled it on bloody/zombie/space costumes… whatever you wanted. She must have gone through pounds of the stuff because I know half the glitter I saw didn’t actually go with the cosplay I was seeing it on. Maybe there were more people who caught on during the con and raided their stash to help, but however it worked, we all got a little sparkle to honor our General/Princess.

Yeah, I’m not even going to pretend I’m not tearing up *again* just from typing this.
topaz119: (Default)
Hellllooooooo. ::echoes::

Long time, no chat.

Nothing much is going on here. Work is consuming entirely too much of my brain power, to the point that I haven’t really read/watched/listened to anything fun for ages.

DragonCon was fun/exhausting/weird/wild/too much money. As it always is. (Nathan Fillion and Matt Smith do the charming thing well, and also look much better IRL (and by that I mean they look more real, less airbrushed.) So does Katee Sackhoff. She does less of the charming thing and more of the badass attitude, which is also pretty appealing. (Karl Urban had to cancel again, sob.) We walked into the William Shatner panel yesterday morning, but got shut out of the GotG2 one on Saturday. The Dr Who fandom is devoted and a little scary in their intensity, but we did manage to see one of Eleven’s panels, as well as Alex Kingston’s.) I bought a time-turner pendant that I plan on wearing as a long necklace in my Mundane life, to see who might recognize it. (I wear long, weird pendants a lot, so people may just think it’s another one of my oddities. We’ll see.) Team NASA at the Space track were as awesome as always--#2Son & I had the best time at the Cassini panel, which was like the best gossip from the mission. I left my AmEx at a restaurant, but the bartender found it and kept it safe for me, blessings be upon her.

I am keeping an eye on Irma to see if I should cancel the NYC trip, but there’s not a lot I can do about that until later in the week, so for now, I’m just laying in the tropical storm supplies and keeping my fingers crossed. (Also, I am very happy not to still own any property in SC. I worry for friends, of course, but not having to seriously deal with hurricane prep is very welcome ATM.)

...and lunch is done so I will talk with you all later!
topaz119: (viridian skies)
Is it the weekend yet?

(And I basically had a 3-day weekend last week for the solar eclipse. That lottery win could happen any time now.)

So let’s talk about that eclipse…

For something that had elements completely out of my control (hello cloud cover) it all worked out really well, YAY. In the 2 years since someone on my lj flist first mentioned that oh, hey, there’s this total eclipse coming and I realized it was basically in my back yard, I cycled through a couple of plans: first, we could hang out at my mom’s house, which was about a mile away from totality (talk about in your back yard), but that (obvs) wasn’t going to happen; and then, the thought of a long weekend in Charleston (hello cute, colonial-era B&B reservation & excellent foodie-ing), but the cost kinda spiraled into the stratosphere, plus it meant a 5 hour drive there and another one back; for a while, I thought about just getting up on Monday and driving north, but then decided that was a little too dicey; and finally, I just sat with hotels.com in one tab and the eclipse map in another and went through every small town in the Tennessee, North Carolina, Georgia, and South Carolina totality zone. I thought I had a serious winner with the Embassy Suites in Greenville – 2 rooms, free breakfast, good wifi (I actually worked), right on the river and right on the max totality line… Except it was $900USD/night, 2 night minimum.

Um. That’s more than 2 months of my mortgage (on my 5000+ sq ft house.)

Yeah, no.

I finally ended up with that looked like a crappy Days Inn in a little town in northern Georgia, that was right inside the totality line + did not appear to be jacking up prices (srsly, less than $200 for 2 rooms, no minimum stay.) It turned out to be actually fairly new and reasonable, plus they had one of those make-your-own waffle irons as part of their continental breakfast, so that was awesome. The cell reception and wifi sucked, but I managed to sit out in the car and do a couple of work-related calls before we left to go find the eclipse party at a state park on Lake Hartwell, right near the dam. *That* turned out to be excellent—picnic tables in pavilions, actual bathrooms, food trucks and plenty of parking nearby, plus trees and shade and kids swimming in the lake. I actually got work done until my laptop battery died (new job==no vacation, but I wasn’t going to miss this), which was right about the time things started happening in the sky.

I gotta say: it was really cool, and if there’s a total eclipse near you, you should definitely go find someplace in the totality zone (and buy your eclipse glasses early!) I’m also glad I was able to achieve said coolness without spending a fortune, so that was extra good. I wish Oldest had been with us, but he was off with a friend, doing an American Gods sightseeing loop (Lookout Mountain, Rock City) and then going up into the Great Smokies to do their eclipse-viewing, so that was good, too.

I don’t have any amazing pictures of the sun, but I do like this one of #2Son during totality, with the 'sunset' reflecting off the lake. (Click to embiggen.)

Now I just need to go for the aurora. :)

This weekend is going to be getting ready for both DragonCon and the zoom-zoom trip to NYC that D & I are taking the weekend after. Very exciting! (Can I see you either weekend? Let me know if we can link up!)
topaz119: (Default)
This not-working-from-home thing is kinda lame. I am reserving judgement until I see what kind of stock grant they’re talking about, but I’m (privately) putting them on notice because I am not sure I want to keep going into an office 5 days/week and having to sort the rest of life out on the fringes. I know that’s how most people work, but I’m not sure I want to go back to that, at least not w/o any significant financial incentive. (Or, I’m just having my regularly scheduled omg-school-started-I-hate-life freakout--it's hard to say.)

So, there’s some travel stuff coming up, maybe I can see some of you…?
  • Sun/Mon, Aug 20-21 – Eclipse Day – I’m taking the easy way out and just going up north a bit, around Lake Hartwell. (Fingers crossed for weather.)
  • Thurs-Mon, Aug 31-Sept4 – DragonCon – We’re in the same hotel as recent years and you all know how much I &heart; the bartenders at Pulse in the Marriott, so yell at me if you’re going to be around. No cosplay this year, unless I throw together some random steampunk persona.
  • Fri-Sun, Sept8-10 – NYC!! – I have to burn some Ritz-Carlton free nights and this is literally the only weekend between now & Nov that D’s & my schedules align. I haven’t booked flights yet, but we’ll be staying down in the Financial District (b/c, see above, re: free.) I have no idea what my dear, darling husband wants to do, but I generally have to keep him busy, so I’m thinking a walking tour on Saturday morning, ending in Brooklyn & then maybe a show on Sat night & I don’t know what on Sunday morning, but maybe the Met…?

    There's possibly a little bit more to come, but I have to see how kids' schedules shake out.

    ....aaaaaand I'm late for Wednesday books, but that’s not much of a surprise by this point, right?

    Dark Days Club, Alison Goodman – So very much a Regency Buffy, which is not a bad thing, just amusing. Good world-building, both the Regency and the demon stuff—I really felt like she loved both sources and worked hard to integrate them. I’ll have to see if the library has the next one.

    A Queen From The North, Erin McRae, Racheline Maltese – You all know how much I love me a modern-day, marry-the-prince romance (well, when I’m not ranting about how poorly it was executed), and this one has the added catnip of an alternate history timeline that is actually rooted in the War of Roses and all of that fallout, so when I saw/heard this on one of the romance blogs (I’m thinking it was redheadedgirl on Smart Bitches, b/c our tastes tend to align) I snagged it up and inhaled it in a day. (I ask you: what’s not to love about a marriage-of-convenience-turned-real plot? Well, again: the execution of it all.) Verdict: goooooood. And more to come. The romance itself was a little low-key, but the supporting characters were good (and wonderfully not a solid wall of white-cis-het) and while yes, most of the obstacles could have been avoided by actual communication between the principals, it felt like everybody’s reasons for avoidance were real (stupid, but real, which is so true) so that worked for me—I am looking forward to the next in the series.

    Warrior’s Apprentice, Lois McMaster Bujold, narrated by someone who was fine, but not worth going to find the listing as I write this – The House of Boys loooooves the Vorkosigans, and since I have worked my way through their other love (Dresden), I figured I’d go for these, too. I was entertained, though the cover image is horrible and I could have gone for someone reading this who was closer in age to the teenaged Miles. Minor quibbles, though. I need to line up the next one because #2Son is leading off our conversations as I leave the office with things like, “seriously, don’t be looking at your twitter feed at stoplights. You need to keep yourself distracted until you’re home,” which is probably not untrue. I’m really only reading to get to A Civil Campaign and the most recent novel about Cordelia, but I’ll go through the intervening steps.

    The Darwath Trilogy, Barbara Hambly – I got sidetracked on this one b/c Dark Days was horribly overdue and then Queen came zooming in out of nowhere and totally sideswiped my attention, but I made myself pick it back up last night to keep from cycling through twitter endlessly.

    I need to maybe grab the next Peter Grant or Vorkosigan on audio, and then go through what BabyBoy brought back from the Shared Worlds book giveaway. I’m 6 books behind on my book challenge, but part of that is because I get into series and end up reading 4 books where only 1 counts toward the specific trope or setting or whatever for the challenge.

    Ciao, kids!
  • topaz119: (life)
    I’m having the kind of week where the high point is getting a new Dyson vacuum cleaner (amazon had a deal on refurbs that got one of their animal-rated models down to $200USD), yay?

    I’ll spare you the rest (though I will say that having a team outing to an Indian buffet swapped out for a lunch&learn with takeout pizza almost made me cry.)

    Books? Books…

    Midnight Riot, Ben Aaronovitch, narrated by Kobda Holbrook-Smith -- So, yes, everyone who has been telling me for forever that I should read this book: yes, you were so right, I had a blast with it, even if it was a little more gruesome than I was expecting. On the flip side, I was laughing out loud in the middle of traffic hell the whole time I was listening to it, which more than balanced out the gore. Also, the narration was outstanding, really one of the best performances I’ve listened to this year.

    The Little Beach Street Bakery, Jenny Colgan -- I had some time to kill over the weekend and ended up at a bookstore (shocker, I know.) It wasn’t anything cool or indie (I was forbidden from *that* bookstore as BabyBoy was roaming around with his pack of friends in that area and didn’t need the threat of parental presence), just a random B&N in Spartanburg, South Carolina, but I saw this on an endcap and had loved another book of hers, so I grabbed it on the way out the door & started in on it while I waited for my presence to be allowable again. So, the other one of hers I read centered on books and Scotland, which is a lethal combination for me, but this one had baking (bread baking, not cupcakes, not that there’s anything wrong with the latter other than they’re a wee bit overdone these days) and Cornwall, which is seriously almost as lethal. So yes, once again I fell hard for the setting and didn’t mind the characters along the way. I am also delighted to see there are sequels for the next time I need somewhere to run & hide away (which, let’s be serious here, is possibly the next time I open twitter.)

    I dropped When Dimple Met Rishi, mostly because it turns out I’m not really in the mood for NA (I get that the seemingly unending repetition of Dimple’s personal hero’s name was used to define her enthusiastic character, and it was very on point for a young woman of her age and attitude, but holy cow, I was 3 chapters into the book and I was already sick of hearing it), but also because after 3 interactions between our main characters, one of which ended with D (appropriately) throwing her iced coffee at R, I found D’s interior monologue about how ‘easy it was to talk’ to R waaaay too much telling, and decided I was done.

    I’m also putting Monstress on hold--I have yet to find a large enough chunk of time to get into the story, which is very in media res, with a judicious amount of time-shifting (so I find myself having to really put a lot of attention into it.) It’s a gorgeous book, but I kept not remembering details and they’re using those details to fill in the backstory, both narratively and graphically, and having to re-read, and re-re-read. Possibly the next time I’m on a plane…?

    The Darwath Trilogy, Barbara Hambly -- I got sucked into life on a Cornish island; this one fell by the wayside, oops.

    The Dark Days Club -- Hmm, so this is sort of turning into a Regency Buffy--complete with the older, more experienced mentor who I am fairly sure is going to turn out to be one of the things Our Heroine is supposed to hunt (Hi Angel!), an enthusiastic non-powered Scooby gang, a clueless mother figure, and your all-purpose-nasty-representation-of-the-patriarchy older rich dude--which is fine, and she’s setting up a lot, I can tell, but I’m going to be really irritated if the lady's maid gets fridged.

    Probably more of Peter Grant and then I swear I’m going into my TBR pile. SWEAR.
    topaz119: (Default)
    Not even fandom can hold back the sick feelings that real-world news has been bringing, much less get me through calling my m.f. red-state-senators as often as I can make myself, so my IG has ballooned with all manner of OTT cooking and baking accounts. Some of them only last a couple of days, so I'm always looking for more, which is how I stumbled over So Yummy, which I swear is what Darcy from in deep with you darling is doing while she's in hiding in Wakanda. I mean, there are a lot of crazy baking blogs/IGs out there, but none of them quite hit the level of Funfetti Fried Oreos or Red Velvet Oreo Lava Cakes. Clearly, she started off coming up with this stuff to keep herself from going crazy while she's there, but now she's in a groove and monetizing it (to an offshore account, of course) so when everything gets sorted out and life can get back to normal, she's got a little nest egg + a shiny new career path, yeah? (Clint has taken to adding another couple of miles to his daily run just to keep up with all the sugar and carbs she throws at him every day. He is totally okay with this.)

    (I guess it really always does come back to fandom to keep me more-or-less sane. No surprise there.)

    Okay, I swore (to myself, at least) that I'd keep up with the Wednesday book meme, so let's do that, too.

    Hunted, Megan Spooner -- YA retelling of Beauty and the Beast, where Beauty is a hunter and spends a fair amount of her time with the Beast working out how she's going to kill him. Beauty as an archer? I was all over it, and I feel like there are a fair number of ppl reading this who would also take to the concept. And I am happy to say it pretty much fulfilled its promise, so feel free to go for it.

    The Darwath Trilogy, Barbara Hambly -- I always forget how much I like her writing until I stumble over another of her books and get sucked in to a world that's different from all the others.

    The Dark Days Club, Alison Goodman -- what Pride and Prejudice and Zombies could have been if the author had actually liked the conventions of the Regency romance he was building on. And knew how to create a supernatural world that overlays the normal one.

    Midnight Riot, Ben Aaronovitch, narrated by Kobda Holdbrook-Smith -- I feel like I'd really like the book anyway, but the narration is ten shades of awesome.

    When Dimple Met Rishi, Sandhya Menon -- New Adult romance that I think I'm about ready to bail on. It's not them, it's me, etc, etc, etc… I think I'm officially Too Old For This.

    I think that Currently Reading list is more than enough to deal with for now!
    topaz119: (Default)
    I started to do the Wednesday book meme, realized it had been months since I’d last done it--including Beach Week, where I read non-stop--and threw up my hands. I’ve finished/abandoned 20ish books since then and typing them all out is a bit overwhelming. (If you’re interested, I’m here on Goodreads. Also, I'm happy to add/friend you there, too, just let me know.)

    I did want to note that I have finally gotten to the end of the published Dresden books – it’s taken almost 2 years, but I’ve listened to every single one of them. This, btw, is a lot of James Marsters in my ears. (This is generally not a bad thing.) The boys are ecstatic that I am not spoilable any more.

    It’s weird, though… Between catching up on that and finishing up watching Parks & Rec, my brain is all adrift for what I should be watching/listening to next. Even if I detoured off to something different, there’s always been that next ep/book waiting in the wings. For *years*…

    For my tv-watching, I think I’m going for Brooklyn 99 next – it seems to have a similar tone as P&R and for audiobooks, maybe Rivers of London. I’ve downloaded the first of that, but then I got sidetracked on all the Disney podcasts flipping out over all the new stuff from D23. I’ve reached my Disney fanboy limit, though, so it’s probably time to get back into narrative mode. (But if any of you want to talk Galaxy’s Edge, etc, please feel free to chime in in the comments. Also, if you need a traveling partner to Orlando, I do still have that Annual Pass just burning a hole in my (virtual) pocket…)

    (I should also do a rewatch of Battlestar Galactica, before DragonCon, and the boys are clamoring for me to go finish up Clone Wars so I can watch Rebels, also in time for DragonCon. Yeah, that’s going to happen…)
    topaz119: (it was a dark and stormy night)
    It was fairly busy, in a domestic sort of way:

  • Took BabyBoy to volunteer at the Shakespeare Tavern so he could see the professional cast who directed his youth players' group perform in Midsummer's Night Dream. Twice.

  • Got an actual haircut (as opposed to just hacking off the bangs/wisps around my face.) Did *not* do the color-the-gray thing... eh, I'm legit old enough to not care about the gray now I guess

  • Periscoped into Disney's D23 Parks & Resorts panel and started saving all my money for the previously-just-rumored-but-now-totally-official Star Wars hotel / LARP experience.

  • Had a very exciting Sunday morning of getting up early and going to Trader Joe's

  • Took BB up to Shared Worlds, said hi to various ppls, came back (it's a little bittersweet as it will be the last year I'll have kids there. I think at least one or another of the boys has been there all but one year of its existence.)

  • Finished the last Dresden audiobook. I'm a little lost, now--14 audiobooks is a lot of time with James Marsters in my earbuds. It's like my brain doesn't know what to do next.

  • Finished the fluffiest fic I have written in ages: just a perfect blendship, Wonder Woman, Etta & Diana, gen -- featuring several of my most favorite tropes: food & team-as-family

    Today I had an all-day orientation for the new job, wherein I discovered that wow, this is a huge company (which I kind of knew, but yow. Really big.) My brain is kind of mush at this point, so have a nice evening and I hope you enjoy the fic. (New fandoms are nerve-wracking.)
  • topaz119: (it was a dark and stormy night)
    Thing the First: For whatever reason, my brain has been going off on all these PWP tangents, this time a random addition to the almost-canon Clint/Darcy (I was fine with it until the farm arrived and it was way too late to change.) This is really the set-up to the pr0n, but there's a little bit of (mostly tame) knifeplay, if that's a thing for you. More coming soon! (I hope.)

    ready for the start of something new, MCU, Clint/Darcy, Part 3 of the fall in with you series (though really, it's just pr0n, so you're not really missing anything if you skip the earlier parts)

    Thing the Second: It was Beach Week last week, and I posted the pretty pictures to IG, but I thought I'd share a couple of goofy ones here...

    it was the Year of the Pegicorn )

    and the unicorn floatie 'nursery' in the hot tub )

    With any luck, no one got photographic evidence of us trying to ride the silly thing in the waves. (Or video, omg.) There was frozen sangria & voodoo juice involved (you're shocked, I know.)

    Thing the Third: BabyBoy's Shakespeare thing was great, and he has gone and hung out with his group of fellow actors several times, so I think we can count it as a success. Even better, the extended family was confused enough by the actual verse that none of them realized the actor playing the boy/girl part was actually a guy (though shading to agender, still using he/him) and thus did not flip out at BB kissing him. (I didn't get to see the performance where all BB's HS drama friends came, but D said the kiss got a lot of hooting and hollering. No extended family there that night either.)
    topaz119: (Lady Catherine)
    It has been A Week, people. cutting for sad furkid news & general madness )

    By the time I actually get to the beach, I am going to desperately need an adult slushie.
    topaz119: (life)
    So, I was supposed to be clearing out my closet this weekend (the shelf/hanging rod pulled out of the wall a few weeks ago, so I am taking the opportunity to Kondo it), but, yeah, I really wasn't in the mood. (Am I ever in the mood for cleaning tasks?)

    Instead: pr0n. ::curtsies::

    Part 2 of spinning on that dizzy edge, Clint/Darcy, MCU, Explicit, ~11,600 words (total), mostly just a PWP.

    (Also, argh, expired acct=wrong icon, sigh, happy monday, let me go find my fandom credit card...)
    topaz119: (#1OTP)
  • The Star Wars photoshoot. This link is old news, I realize, but I have to ask if it's just me, or is Leia giving off a Bene Gesserit vibe?

  • This seems like it could come in handy: How to Binge Watch All the Television That Matters

  • MIT Teaches You How to Speak Italian & Cook Italian Food All at Once. Unrelated: One of the cable movie channels has Moonstruck on seemingly every night. I'm still not tired of it.

  • No link, but BabyBoy came back from his first day of Shakespeare rehearsals with stars next to the lines where they're going to make it clear it's a dick joke. And he's underlined all the lines that Orsino is flirting with Viola even though he thinks she's a he (Cesario) so he knows to really play it up. I am not sure D's family is ready for actual Shakespeare.

  • I had my third interview for a new job and thus far, everyone seems to like everyone else (me, included.)
  • topaz119: (milky way)
    Hi, hello, how's it all going?

    Mondays are so much more manageable when it's not raining. I'd just like to state that up front.

    #2 & I went to see Guardians 2 last night, and much fun was had. We ended up at a 3D showing (b/c we were going late and my usual no-3D stance was overtaken by the extra hour of sleep I'd get if we didin't wait for the regular showing), which was actually not bad. Yondu's zippy little arrow-thing's trails looked very cool with some extra depth and space looked super pretty and candy-colored.

    We were a little late, and so missed the first bit of trailers, but we did get to see the new Wonder Woman trailer, which made me very happy (ngl, I might have squealed a bit at "I am Diana of Themyscira, daughter of Hippolyta"), and the trailer for The Last Jedi (also squee-worthy, but I've watched that a dozen times and I had no idea there was a new WW trailer. Though… did I just miss that it's in 3D?) We also got the new Mummy trailer (about which we agreed it would probably make a fun ride/experience at Universal in Orlando but it's not going to be more fun than the original), the new Transformers trailer (really? Another one? And this one with medieval knights? Still, Mark Wahlberg>>>>Shia. Also, Anthony Hopkins is now barred from supercilious Thor comments given his involvement with this trainwreck), and Dunkirk (BabyBoy is already massively on board with this one even if he will be at camp when it premieres.)

    All this before we even got to the movie (and thus, by complicated family rules, allowed to start in on the popcorn.) spoilers! )

    So, that was pretty good for a boring Sunday night.

    And in a random fic-writer/reader observation, I would really be excited for the story of how Gamora and Quill find a third for their relationship, someone aromantic enough to be super-happy with Quill's casual attitude toward sex, because I totally read Gamora as ace, but slowly reaching for a relationship and getting tangled up in knowing how her orientation differs from his. Everyone would be happier if he had someone to bang who didn't want anything more from him, right?

    So if you see something like that, point me to it. (Or I suppose I could always write it myself, yeah? Which means the question is who to send off to the Guardians part of the galaxy…?)

    In other news, my grandmother's dining room set is near! I am waiting for the driver to call and set up a delivery date! So excited (of course my lovely brain is whining that we can only that its side trip to southern New Mexico did not totally destroy the wood, please, please, please let me not have just spent money to ship trash…)

    How's everyone else doing this fine Monday?
    topaz119: (Lady Catherine)
    Okay, the adulting portion of my life has been totally out of control lately--cutting for tiresome whining )

    I am attempting to maintain sanity by:
  • Walking the new, Crazy!Dog daily and putting my mileage toward the shiny Deatheater medal for the latest virtual run at Hogwarts Running Club.
  • Continuing to listen to the audiobook version of As You Wish, Cary Elwes's memoir of the making of The Princess Bride. If nothing else, listening to him do a pitch-perfect impression of Rob Reiner in and around all the commentary that RR is actually doing in the narration is worth a laugh or two every day.
  • I did manage a roast braised in tomatoes and garlic and onions and mushrooms (and wine!), with some pasta and bread and roasted asparagus on Sunday, so I am officially already ahead of last week in the dinner department.
  • Debating whether or not to do the spring Readathon... At the very least, I am poking through my TBR list/stacks to assemble potential reading lists just in case I decide to go for it.

    I'm not sure if it's working (sanity-wise), but the alternative is to throw in the towel and buy All The Easter Chocolate, and I'm not there yet, so...

    How are all of you? (thank you for listening to me whine yet again.)
  • ::waves::

    Apr. 17th, 2017 01:26 pm
    topaz119: (milky way)
    Good morning, happy Monday, long time, no chat—work got ridiculous here, to the point where I was replying to emails while I was at Disney World by saying that I would be happy to help with their suddenly-on-fire project, but that a) at Disney World; and b) *already* working with somebody else's suddenly-on-fire project and had another one in the queue. Between what I worked at Disney and what I worked over this last weekend, I practically have another forty hours on the books.

    At least I get paid on contract hours these days, because I would have flipped out if I'd been on salary.

    My brain is kind of mush, though, enough that I lost all momentum on my reading this year. I have a half-dozen books started, but they're all (even the fluffy romances) making my brain hurt to read them. Fortunately, I saw a comment on one of my gazillion bookish blogs to the audiobook version of As You Wish, Cary Elwes' memoir of making The Princess Bride, which I read a few years ago and adored. I'm happy to say the audio version is almost as nice, and includes about half of the people quoted in the book to narrate their parts. It's very soothing during our especially horrible traffic these days. (Did I talk about the interstate that collapsed a few weeks ago? Yeah, that's not far from the house/the high school, and while I don't work in-town these days, the only way for the quarter of a million cars that use that route to get into the city now is to use the interstate I *do* take to the office around to I75. Traffic is entirely f*cked until they rebuild the burnt out part, sigh.)

    Oh! I forgot to mention that #2Son got picked to do the wand ceremony at Ollivander's in Diagon Alley when we were there over spring break. It was pretty excellent! Not only is the 'wand picking the wizard' scene very well-staged (and the guys playing Mr. Ollivander are totally into it), but #2 went along with being the center of attention really well. Given his sometimes-overwhelming anxiety, this is not always the case, and while he said later that he could have done without the 'audience participation', at the time, he was super laidback and even cracked a few jokes when the first few wands didn't work out so well. I, of course, bought the wand that 'picked' him—I had already been contemplating getting one of the interactive wands, and it seemed like the thing to do when the wand is picked for you. So, now we have a scary-looking wand that Mr. Ollivander assures us is good for prophecying and scrying. I really didn't get to spend enough time in Diagon Alley, though the weather was overcast and drizzly, which added enormously to the atmosphere. I also didn't get to do dinner at Toothsome's Chocolate Emporium, the steampunk restaurant at Citywalk, so I foresee more time spent at Universal in my future.

    I should probably also mention that I skimmed through my lj friendslist, back to before the new TOS announcement, and added as many people who made mention of having a DW as I could find, but I probably missed leaving a comment saying as much on a fair number of journals, so, um, if you're one of those people, hi? I also actually looked at my Manage Circle page on DW and tried to clean that up a bit, because it appears that I missed ppl subscribing here, oops? Sorry, again. I'm probably going to shift base here at some point, but did I mention the craziness at work? Plus, it's tax season so that's taking up stupid amounts of time, too. Sorting out online presence is on my list, though, so at some point I will address it.

    I will leave you with a fun fic rec to distract your brain from the general blah-ness of another Monday in 45's administration:
    The Principle of Terrestrial Mediocrity, by [archiveofourown.org profile] AlphaFlyer, Ant Man | MCU, gen, ~5000 words===Luis likes his job at Stark Tower and would like to tell you about a special Friday night. :D
    topaz119: (wdw)
    When last we chatted about spring break at Disney World, I mentioned that my brother was not a Disney person at all, and that he was coming along with us because he wanted to spend time with the boys and we were already set for WDW. I think we decided that he'd seen Finding Nemo and Up, and possibly The Lion King, but certainly none of the princesses. Please keep in mind that he is a Slytherin (we made him take the Pottermore quiz while waiting in line at Universal—he had no idea what we were talking about with the Houses before that) engineering site manager who does things like go swimming in a mountain lake as soon as the ice breaks up.

    Reader, he arrived on Saturday afternoon. By Monday morning, he was whistling Be Our Guest as he made breakfast.

    Such is the power of the Land of Mickey. ;D

    NB: I see that SUP has done… something… to LJ, and really, I think I've hit my limit in trying to figure out what to do with it all, so for now, I'm posting to DW and once I get our taxes done I'll see if I feel like sorting it all out one more time and going back to cross-posting.

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