It feels weird

So last weekend we finished all (almost all) of our painting. We started with the bathroom, changing the shade of the color we already had, so we went from dark milk chocolate to an even darker-still chocolate brown, accenting with a sort of sea-foam color. Then it was on to the dining room. We took it from very light greenish with a yellow hue, to seriously dark green – then changed out the artwork too, made a huge difference in the look.

Then last weekend it was on to the living room. That one went from a light shade of “adobe” to a much more dramtic shade of the same general color. Then we put the furniture in different places, changed up the placement of some of the artwork – the whole place feels new, fresh and exciting.

Thing is . . . Mom isn’t there to stop by and see it.

She’s been gone for almost 16 months now, and I still keep expecting her to drop by.

In the past, no matter how hard we would try and keep it secret, to surprise her, she ALWAYS seemed to know when we were doing something new to the house, and she’d sneak over before we were ready to show it off and see what we were doing. It was almost a game. Somehow she’d clue in to the fact that we had something planned, and she’d get over to see it while we were still painting, or building, or whatever we were up to.

Mom had amazing taste in decor and really classy ideas in color and furniture placement. it was always so much fun to make a change in the house and have her come and see it.

Every day we were painting, my sister and I couldn’t help but feel like Mom would be pulling up outside any minute to sneak a peek. I know I looked outside every time I heard a car go by, and I caught my sister doing the same thing.

Knowing it would never happen again, felt really weird. And I have a feeling that isn’t ever going to go away.

Geeking out

I dunno if you use databases in your work or play – but I do. At work, I use Microsoft’s Access to create and use databases that store, sort and organize all of my data. And it’s a lot of data.

So when I realized I could really use a database at home, for The Velvet Zebra, I was annoyed that you can’t use Access on the iPad. Sure, I have it on one of my laptops, but who wants to haul that dinosaur out every time I need to update or review the Inventory? Plus I don’t carry the dinosaur around with me wherever I go, like I do the iPad. (Except on weekends, I mean sure, I carry it to work every day and use it when I’m killing time waiting for my carpooler to get off work – but I’m not a total dork – I leave it at home when I’m out doing other things)

I’d been looking around for something – unwilling to plop down too much hard earned cash on an App that I was unfamiliar with, and finding nothing out there with a free trial or free lite version that did the trick. And frankly, Access has limits in this respect. For instance, while you can do a multitude of things with data, you can’t link specific photos to individual pages in a single database.

Tre’ annoying.

Well after tons of research and reading of reviews, I found one I was willing to try – called Bento. Yes, it wasn’t free. It cost me $9.99 to put it on the iPad, and I can’t put it on the other iPad without buying it again. They have iPhone and Mac versions as well, but you do have to buy each one. I’m definitely going to buy one for the other iPad, so my sister can carry our inventory with her too, and maybe by Summer I’ll put it on the iPhone since we do art shows in Summer and I use the iPhone to take credit cards.

But back to Bento. It’s amazing! I’m loving it like crazy. I can load my entire Inventory on this thing, sorted any way I like, and have a photo of each item on each item’s page. Something you can’t do in Access.

One other slightly geeky thing I’ve done is use Bento for my writing database. 😉

I find I can load not only all the info for each novel written or being written, but cross reference each character in the book, their relationship to each of the other characters, and all the information I could think to add.

It’s fun 😀 I only have a couple of books loaded in right now, still working on the whole thing, but it’s awesome. A great tool for keeping track of character tidbits and minor player’s names. On the novel’s side, I’ve plugged in publication and sales data as well. It’s nice to see on one page which novel has sold how many copies and via what outlet.

For instance, I hadn’t looked in a while, so I didn’t realize I’d already reached the 25,000 books sold mark. Or that Barnes & Noble is my best source for buyers. With Bento, at the touch of a finger I can follow trends and study stats.

And yes, maybe I have been sitting here trying to find other things I could build a database for and track – – what of it? ;/

It’s just a harmless, geeky thing.

The Snowball Effect

You know how it happens – you’re looking around your house, or your yard, or maybe even just your room or office, and you notice something that needs changing. But as you ponder it, you realize if you change THAT, then this other thing won’t look right, so you’ll need to change it as well …

And it snowballs.

Back in January, when my sister and I bought that new flat screen TV for our Christmas present, we ended up with a new console, new DVR, new HD service etc … and ended up exposing a big swath of wall that hadn’t been painted way back when.

Well, after several attempts to identify the paint we’d used, and many failed tries with little sample colors of what we’d “thought” were the right one, we decided what we really need to do is repaint the entire living room. Now since we were really enjoying the color we had, but weren’t able to replicate it, we knew we had to pick a new color … we tried out a few by painting samples around the room, and settled on one we like a lot.

But then one evening as we’re mentally prepping for the task, we both realized what we really didn’t like anymore was the DINING room color. So it was off to Lowe’s again for more samples, then more painted areas on the walls, and we picked one we really like.

We haven’t been able to actually PAINT yet – we’ve been busy – but while we were waiting … okay, the bathroom is seriously small, so repainting that won’t be such a big deal. We’ve settled on a color finally.

BUT … If we’re painting the bathroom, it would be the perfect time to get rid of the pedestal sink that has a crack in it, and get a new sink in there. And if we’re buying that cute little white sink at Lowe’s, we should take this opportunity to put a new faucet on it, something really adorable.

Okay, so we’re all planned out. We have our paint colors chosen – probably buying them this Friday – but while we’re at it … I mean, really, we don’t LIKE that credenza down there at the end of the diningroom all that much, how hard would it be to find something new? And since the kittens have come SO close too many times to knocking over that wall butler and smashing the mirror, why don’t we – since we’re painting and all – buy a new wall mirror and a chest instead? We can give the wall butler to our sister or maybe our niece. Oh, and what better time to install those two new dining room lights we’ve had our eye on??

So far, that’s all that has come up 🙂

But really – what’s more fun than painting? It’s the easiest, cheapest way to give yourself a completely new look without buying new furniture or having to pull up carpet or something dramatic. You have to take down all the art anyway, so you take the opportunity to put it up differently, rearrange the order, change up what painting goes on what wall. Maybe you even get creative, and hand paint some quotes among the frames. I’ve finally found a space for a group of steampunk-style wall clocks I’m going to get that will look great against the new wall color.

One of my coworkers was bitten by the snowmonster too, so I know it’s not just me. He and his wife are putting in new shower wall tiles, and realized then the floor will look grungy … and if they put in a new floor, the sink and counter will look dull …

What really horrifies me isn’t so much the snowball effect that turned a simple repaint of one room into a whole house makeover … it’s the thought of painting three rooms WITH FIVE CATS!

Maybe if I put little foam brushes on their feets . . .

OMG are you freaking KIDDING me?

No, it’s not a joke – The Velvet Zebra is now on (gasp) Facebook!

Yes, I know, I’ve mocked Facebook more than once in the past. I still think it’s a strange, strange place. And for the record, it’s not like I’M on Facebook, really. It’s The Velvet Zebra that is. You won’t see any videos of me doing the Macarena in the library or updating everyone on what I had for breakfast … even I don’t care what I just ate.

But you WILL see news about The Velvet Zebra. Postings of our new designs, pictures of the jewelry, new book announcements, talks about what’s coming, what’s being made and what The Velvet Zebra is up to.

I’m a total N00b when it comes to Facebook, so I might not be doing it right for a while, but I’m working on it. I know you can “Like” the page, so I did something right. I “think” you can leave comments … if you’ve tried and can’t, let me know. I’m such a paranoid, I might have too many padlocks on the whole thing – you know I freak out when it comes to Big Brother. After all, I only have sisters 🙂

But my niece has offered to help if I get stuck, and I’m always open to learning new things. After all, just this last weekend I learned how to take better photos of the jewerly while three rambunctious 9-month old kittens try desperatly to help ! So if you see any little hairs in any of the photos, they’re not mine!

The same goes with paws, claws, tails or a red-faced woman screaming.

Branding

You may be asking – The Velvet Zebra ?? Unless you didn’t even notice your browser bar isn’t showing MyMidnightMuse anymore … You’ve arrived at TheVelvetZebra.com

In the coming week(s) this page will be updated to reflect the new business model my sister and I have adopted. There’s not that much changing besides structure and presentation – we both still make and sell jewelry and I’m still busy writing away, working on the next novel.

What’s changing is our name(s) and how you can navigate through it all. To that, I have my oldest niece to thank.

See, a couple of weeks ago she sent me an email asking for my web pages, for the jewelry and the fiction, and we’d been talking about our blogs earlier … so there I was, typing out this email with the various sites where she could find Fables, Midnight Reading, My Midnight Muse … the jewelry, the blog, the Lulu site for paperbacks, the Smashwords page for eBooks … and I realized not only are there way too many odd-ball sites to direct her too, the names made it sound as if I write fantasy romance or something.

It was – in a word – embarassing. (Please note, I don’t mean to suggest writing Fantasy Romance is a bad thing, it’s just not MY thing)

Sure, there was a reason I ended up being called Midnight Muse that has NOTHING to do with what I write – but that was a long time ago and it’s a boring story. Ten or so years ago, my sister and I started a jewelry business, selling at art shows and online, and we named our business Fable’s (apostrophe is on purpose) but while we were able to get a business license under that name, naturally we were never able to get the web domain. Plus, we realized later, any web site named after Fable would seem like anyting BUT a jewelry business.

I had even tried, and failed, to register my own name as a domain – – seems my name isn’t all that unique (!)

We had already been thinking we had too many odd names for our sites and products, and it was a pain to try and direct people to various places on the internet to find us, so when it got so awkward telling my own niece what our sites were called, I realized it was time.

So my sister and I put our heads together and gave it a long, hard think. And it took some time. It’s really not easy to blend lapidary jewelry, chain mail jewelry, and novels. Plus take into account anything else we might add in the future – – since we’re constantly experimenting with stones and agates, making things like Agate nightlights, beach rock mosaics, etc. We didn’t want something that would be too descriptive and limiting.

Long story short, we took a look at some of our favorite towns in our area, and the names of some of our favorite shops, picturing what it would look like if we had a brick-and-mortar store – the combination of our products, etc. And what we came up with – after serious thought and narrowing down – was The Velvet Zebra. Not only a name we were able to purchase the domain of, but also license as what was formerly Fable’s.

Unfortunately it seems a tad impossible to change the names of some sites we have, without closing them out and starting again – and in some cases that would cause a lot of confusion. Unlike this web site, I can’t just change the name of my Smashwords page, for instance, and have an automatic redirect take place. And we’d thought of that ahead of time – so our solution was The Velvet Zebra.

Here, once I finish some house cleaning and add some fresh paint, you’ll find pages and links to all the other sites. Making Thevelvetzebra.com our hub, if you will. The one place we can direct everyone, where they can find it all. They’ll be directed to other sites, but it’ll all center here.

So now I have some house keeping to attend to – some pages to create, links to make, and a novel that needs to get finished ! I hope you’ll stay tuned, and enjoy the changes.

It’s that time again!

Time for PUPPY BOWL !!!

I’ve heard some say there’s also a football game or some such, but that’s on another network (and the Seahawks aren’t playing, so phoey)

I can’t wait to see this year’s Puppy Bowl on the big screen, in HD. It’ll feel just like I’ve brought eleven puppies into the house 🙂 Of course the Kitten Half Time Show will just look like my life now, what with all the kittens already IN the house.

So this Sunday, get a bag of kibble and your favorite beverage, and tune in to Animal Planet for the biggest game of the year – Puppy Bowl 2013 !!

Customer Service Fail

So, back in December, while getting ready for our Christmas trip to New Mexico, my sister and I realized we both could do with new pairs of jeans. We didn’t really need them right away, but we figured – what the heck? We’re going on vacation, it’d be nice to have new jeans to bring along.

Now, we’re picky about our jeans, and we don’t wear the same styles, but what we like can be hard to find in the stores. Especially in our small town. No problem, we figured, we like Lee jeans and this is the world of the Interwebs – we can go online and order them directly from Lee, get them shipped quickly, and have them in time for our trip.

Cool beans, right?

Not so much.

My sister went online, using her computer, found the jeans she wanted and placed her order. She picked Expedited Shipping, for an extra $14.00, in order to have the jeans arrive before we flew out. Thinking that was pretty cool, I pulled out my iPad and went to Lee.com, found the jeans I liked, and placed an order – and I, too, picked the Expedited Shipping.

They should have arrived in 5 working days. They even emailed us both Tracking numbers, so I kept an eye out for them as the days ticked by. Watching them travel across the US.

They should have arrived on a Friday, but they didn’t. So by Sunday, I was pretty pissed. I logged on to UPS and looked up the Tracking number – low and behold, they were delivered to my front door on Friday.

Um … NOT. Not only did they NOT get delivered, my sister and I happened to be home all day that Friday, and UPS never even drove by our house.

Furious, because I get that way, I emailed UPS with the tracking information (and let me tell you, just doing THAT was a circus. They make you sign up for an account before you can even email them a complaint!) I tell them that the tracking information says my order was delivered on Friday, but it in fact was not. I even explain that I was home all day Friday, and UPS never came to my door.

Hours later, I get an email back from UPS. “We’re so sorry you’re experiencing a problem with delivery. We looked up your Tracking information, and it turns out your package was delivered on Friday to your front door.”

Me: “Um, no, it farking wasn’t.”

UPS: “It says here it was.”

Me: “And I’m telling you it wasn’t. I was here, UPS was not.”

UPS: “Try looking around, perhaps it fell behind a bush. Or check with a well meaning neighbor who might have taken it for you. Are there any other adults in the house who might have it and failed to tell you?”

Me: “Are you fucking with me?”

UPS: “If the package has gone missing, it is the responsibility of the Shipper to replace or find it.”

Now, in what universe can UPS lose your package and claim it’s the company that used UPS to send it who is at fault??? Seriously.

So I emailed Lee.com, and explained to them my issue. From MY OWN EMAIL I gave Lee.com MY order number, and said that UPS claims it was delivered but it in fact was not. Then, using my sister’s email, I sent them the same note, using HER name, HER order number, HER email address.

The next day we each get an email from Lee.com “We show that your package was delivered on Friday. Check your front porch. And thank you for using Lee.com”

Am I being punked?

Furious(er) I send off a rant to Lee.com, explaining to them that NO, in fact the package is NOT at my front door. That my front door isn’t so large a package can go without notice by two grown adults, and that I wanted a replacement order shipped ASAP.

Days later, my sister and I each get emails explaining that replacement jeans will be shipped shortly, as soon as they sort this all out, and we’ll get a confirmation email when it ships.

Well now it’s too late. Our trip was here, we left without new jeans. AND without any new order being shipped. Several days into our stay in New Mexico, we’re standing in a Starbucks in Los Alamos with our family, my sister gets this email from Lee:

“We have shipped 2 different orders to 2 different people at the same address. Please provide an alternate address for the replacement order.”

Whaaa?? Yes, you idiots, you shipped orders to two people – orders that failed to arrive. You need to ship them again. Is it so alien to find two adults living at the same house??

Frustrated, and on our farking VACATION, I had her email them back and give them MY work address for an alternate – saying they should ship there because they would be signed for when they arrived.

Baffled, we moved on, but the very next day I got the same stupid email. Exact same email. So I replied exactly the same way. Told them to ship the jeans to my work address, and they would be signed for when they arrived.

I get back to work, January 3rd, expecting to find two packages with jeans in them, but of course nothing is here. Then later that day I got an email telling me my order shipped, and would arrive in 10 business days, and my sister gets the same email. The next day at home, a box arrived with my sister’s jeans. TO THE HOUSE! And then, you guessed it, 10 days later a package comes to my work … MY SISTER’S JEANS!

Not mine.

Yesterday I emailed Lee again, furious that my jeans have never shown up. I gave them my order number, and I told them that my sister’s jeans arrived – gave them that order number – but mine have not yet arrived. And I said I was fed up, and wanted them to refund me my money and keep the damn jeans.

Today I get an email from Lee.com “Your jeans arrived on 1/16 and were signed for by K Williams.”

Well yes, you ass hole, my SISTER’S JEANS ARRIVED! And yes, I signed for them, and yes it was on 1/16. WHERE THE F ARE MINE?!?!?

Never. Order. From. Lee. Now not only do I not have any new jeans, but they’re too stupid to understand the issue, and won’t refund me the money because they’re convinced my jeans came.

My sister gets two pair of jeans, I get high blood pressure.

I wonder if Levi Jeans employ the same idiots . . .

A blanket apology to all men

I love you guys, I really do – but being a single woman who works with 32 of you, let’s just say it can be easy to lump you all in a catagory.

For years, since it’s inception really, I’ve maintained that HD television is something “only men can see”. My television set gave me a crystal clear picture, in living color, with no blurring – what more could you want? I figured HD was something marketed toward the male of the species because, honestly you guys will buy anything that makes football watching more fun.

“You can see the sweat dripping off their faces!” I would hear. But that just made me wonder why on earth anyone would want HD. If it makes me see sweat dripping, or makes older SF movies look incredibly fake, why would I want that?

And seriously, how much MORE clear can an already clear picture be?

I was one of those women who believed that only Men have the ability to SEE the HD signal. That we women lacked a gene that would allow us to be impressed by it.

Then I bought a big flat screen. For the first week it was set up, our Direct TV signal was standard. Our dish outside was round, our DVR regular ol’ issue. I had made an appointment to be upgraded to the oblong dish and HD receiver/DVR (which at the time of my order was free – yay me) But already we were pretty impressed. The screen was so much larger than what we were used to, we were really happy.

“How much better can this get?” we wondered. “It’s big, it’s clear, it’s really nice.” We were finally able to see the score of a game up in the corner without squinting or walking up to the screen. We could now read news tickers that scrolled along the bottom. We figured we were set.

Then the Direct TV man came. While I was at work and my sister was home, he unhooked our old round dish, put the new oblong up on the roof (instead of the fence where the round one had to go) then came inside and hooked up the new DVR, showed my sister all the fun things you can do with the remote, and left.

When I came home that night, we were too busy with the installation of our new stove to really watch TV – but later that night I did notice the news was especially crisp and colorful.

Saturday rolls around, and we had to run errands that kept us busy until late. But then, anticipating our Seahawks would win their Sunday game (#*@$#!(*) we decided to watch the Packers lose to the 49ers, so we’d know who the Hawks would play next Sunday. (dammit dammit dammit)

Ho-ly crap!

I gets it. I really gets it !

Yes, you can see them sweat. And you can see the blades of grass they’re destroying, each individual hair on every man’s face, who is and isn’t wearing underwear. And when they run a play back in slow motion, you can SEE their ass-fat jiggle !! I was truly and honestly blown away by the clarity. The little things you notice now, that you just couldn’t see before. Hair is what really startles me, for some reason. Even watching 20/20 I found myself staring at a guy’s jaw line because his little scruffy beard was so crystal clear and sharp !

I could even see the pimples a woman was trying to hide with makeup on the news.

Which is disgusting except that it was SO CRYSTAL CLEAR!

Now I’m really angry that my PS3 broke down – when I think of being able to play games on THAT screen, in HD . . . damn.

Still, watching movies and television shows in HD now is da bomb. Which leads me to say this:

To all the Men out there – you were right (on this one) HD really IS where it’s at.

Breaking In the New Year

So Happy New Year to everyone . . . it’s been a smash so far!

Literally.

We got back from our vacation to New Mexico on Saturday evening (I didn’t mention the vacation to New Mexico ’cause I haven’t blogged in a while) but yeah, went to Los Alamos to spend a week with our niece – the whole family, sans one niece and her new hubby – it was lovely. COLD and sunny. Los Alamos, Santa Fe, Albe…quirky something, I can’t spell it, was beautiful, cold and snow-covered.

More on that later, when I have the photos figured out.

But then we came back home to blessed, beautiful grey skies and rain. My sister and I don’t usually buy each other Christmas presents, what we do is buy something together that we both want, for the house usually. This year it was a new LG flat screen HD LCD 47″ television.

Cool, eh? When you consider what we had been using was a 26″ old CRT, the kind that takes up a massive amount of space and weighs as much as your car. So the old TV was in this beautiful corner hutch, with doors you could shut to hide it from view. Only our doors wouldn’t shut all the way because the friggin’ TV stuck out too far. But it was nice. There was no way this cabinet could hold a new flat TV, so we knew we had to do something.

MY idea was to cut off the top portion, and let the new TV sit on the bottom half. It would save some money, using the old furniture with the new TV, but we’d have to “earthquake proof” the unit. And by earthquake proof, I mean cat-proof. The new kittens are 7 months old now, and holy terrors, and I knew they could destroy anything I put up.

In fact that’s what they say as they tear around the house. “DESTROY! DESTROY!” while the two adults (the Titans) can be heard replying “EXTERMINATE! EXTERMINATE!” (did I mention they don’t get along?)

Anyway, where was I ? …. Yeah, new TV. So we went out shopping on Monday, figuring we’d hit some cool New Year sales. And sure enough we did. Found what we wanted at Best Buy for a good price, and my sister spots a really pretty cabinet there. More of a table really, with a big metal bar that bolted to the back side, for mounting the new flat screen. The nice sales lady told us we wouldn’t have to use that if we didn’t want – so I explained “I have cats” she replies “Oh but these TVs are solid, on their stands. Lemme show you.”

She proceeded to demonstrate on a smaller TV how “sturdy” the table stands are. HA. It would take only one kitten to knock that over, let alone 3. Nevermind the fact that one of the Titans weighs an angry 20lbs. So we decided on the new table with the big heavy metal bar. You mount the TV on these wall mount-type bars, and that secures onto the big heavy metal bar that’s bolted to the new table.

Easy peasy, right? The new TV fit just fine in the SUV, along with the box the cabinet was in. I didn’t pay the extra bucks for assembly – seriously?

Then comes the New Year. Tuesday. We knew we had to lose the cabinet, and the old TV first, and the “plan” was to take it all out to the garage, where our new exercising area is. Who wouldn’t rather walk a treadmill while watching a movie, eh?

My sister cleaned off/out the cabinet, then I started to disconnect all the cables from the DVR and the theater system – then the tricky part – we laid out a huge (faux) bearskin rug we have to set the TV on the hardwood floors and “drag” it out to the kitchen, where we could heft it onto a cart and wheel it outside, through the yard, to the garage. First I had to take the cable off the back, and the power cord, so we eased it out just enough, turned it around a bit, and I unhooked everything.

Then the scary part.

Okay, you know what happened next. It fell from a height of about 4 feet to the bearskin (thank God), “face down” and shattered.

I’m talkin’ explosion, too. The plastic housing smashed, I don’t think the picture tube broke, but it was a horrifying mess. Stressful, to say the least. Now honestly, I don’t care that the old TV broke, big deal, but the shock and surprise, and subsequent stress, just about ruined me for the day.

Now the cabinet is moot, so I sent a text to my other sister asking if she wanted it – sure, she says – so after cleaning up the MESS that was once a television set, we managed to get the big cabinet out and into the garage, where it can sit until my sister picks it up.

Gawd. Then I had to assemble a new piece of furniture AND install a 47″ flat screen to it.

Needless to say, I was stressed out the whole way. First that old TV had fallen, then the earthquake … er … kittens broke an old Magellan thermometer – spilling that oil from the inside that the balls float in. I’d though that was glycerin, but it ain’t ! Whatever that crap is, it stinks. And the smell is hard to get rid of, so it made us both a tad light headed and sick all day.

The cabinet went together pretty easily, except one *#$@ screw. It’s always one screw, ain’t it? But it went in solid enough in the end, and it’s somewhere you can’t see, so whatever. Got that all put together, got it into position in the living room, and now it was time to mount the bars to the back of the new TV.

Holy crap, people – – can we NOT label things?

They told me “the back of your TV will have these four holes to put bolts in for wall mounting brackets. Easy peasy, anyone can do it.”

Well Frak me. By now it’s late, I’m freaking paranoid about breaking things, exhausted… I open the box carefully, exposing the back of the TV without taking it out of it’s protective foam thingies, and what do I find?

Four holes, sure, but they have bolts IN them. I freaked. I’d expected to find these four open, empty holes, maybe even a label that said “wall mount” or SOMETHING. What I didn’t expect was to have to take OUT four screws in order to put four bolts in.

I panicked, I don’t mind saying. I sat on the kitchen floor (where all this assemblage was taking place) and surfed the ‘net on my iPad, desperate to find something that would tell me “YES, this is where you put the brackets.” or at least “It’s OKAY to pull out those four screws.”

No brainer for the interwebbies, but damned if I could find ANYTHING that answered my question.

Finally just too desperate and frustrated, we went for it – took out the four screws – and discovered they were in fact simply bolt-holes waiting for a wall mount bracket.

GAWD. We decided a man designed the system. Sorry, guys, you know I love you, but really – a woman would have slapped a label on the back of that TV that said “Put Bolts Here” with little arrows.

We found the right bolts (this kit gave us massive numbers of various sizes to pick from) then attached the brackets … then I think I peed a little when we got ready to pick UP the new TV. Sure, it was light. I swear, these flat screens are something else. More than twice the size of the old TV and only a fraction of the heft. We had to carry it from the kitchen to the living room, I was scared spitless we’d drop it … but alas, it went up !

Now we don’t have an HD receiver or HD DVR just yet – I have to order those and have them installed – so we’re using an HD TV to see regular signals, kinda weird. But it works ! I fainted down onto the couch, watched some old black and white Twilight Zone eps on the Syfy channel and then crawled to bed, determined that the destruction of our old TV was NOT going to be an indicator of 2013.

Out with the old, eh?

Gawd.

Angry Birds, Star Wars!

Yes, some of my friends think Angry Birds is the dumbest waste of time, too hyped, ridiculously commercialized, bla bla bla. And to them, I say “Screw You”

I love it. So this morning I downloaded Angry Birds Star Wars, an hour after it went on sale, just before I left for work – and I gotta say, I haven’t had this much fun in a long while 🙂 The Luke Skywalker bird has a light saber, the Obi Wan bird uses the Force… Even the Han Solo bird is wielding a blaster – it’s a friggn’ hoot !

I’ve been having a blast all through my lunch break. The sights, the sound effects, it all takes me back (because yes, I’m old enough to have stood in line to see the original movie when it first premiered) And I’m a purest – those first three movies are IT as far as I’m concerened. I don’t care if you love the prequels, or how great you thought they were – good for you.

I AM being a good girl – I only played at break, and during lunch, and I swear I won’t play after work until I get home. See, my sister and I carpool every day now, and she works 4/10’s, which means when I get off at 3:30 in the afternoon, I have an hour and a half to kill before she gets off. And, being the wise, structured, dependable Writer that I am (ie: No social life to speak of) I’m spending that hour and a half every day working on the current novel. I just take my iPad and keyboard, and go sit inside the Barnes & Noble nearby, since they have little tables you can use and don’t freak out if you’re not buying a latte while you sit there so long. I could go to Starbucks, but I’d be broke buying a drink every day, and people tend to stare at your screen when you sit there.

Trei annoying.

Plus, being inside B&N, I can also research some new reads – my family and I are all flying down to Los Alamos NM for Christmas, spending a week at my niece’s house, and I’ll need to load up the Nook before I go. I’m hankering for some good Mysteries, and since I don’t frequent that genre, I don’t know who’s good. Thankfully the Nook lets you read for free inside the store, so I can do some trial and error before buying.

And I’m HOPING to have my new novel done and out before I go !! (fingers crossed) which means, I’d better get to work 🙂

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