My System for Pictures

I remember, very clearly, my French teacher in college commending me on my organizational skills. She said that it must take a lot of time to stay so organized, and I said no, actually, it didn’t take much time at all. Then, I conceded that it may have taken some time to set up initially, but that the upkeep was easy.

I remember this because I have always been an extremely organized person, and extremely proud of it. After I became a mother, I sensed that my organizational skills were slipping. However, the dent in my otherwise pristine skills that motherhood made has nothing on the massive system failure that occurred after I started teaching. As I said, I am a very organized person, so when I found myself drowning in papers, I started to wonder how people, not as organized as I, can even survive as teachers.

I have finally gotten my head above water, but I’m still working out the kinks in what is a large and, from what I can tell, ever-changing system. As such, I can’t share any words of teacher’s organizational wisdom with you just yet, but I did notice, during one of my cleaning sessions, a major flaw with my system for organizing pictures on my computer.

I don’t actually take all that many pictures, given how ridiculously easy it is to do now. Some people take thousands of pictures a year. I’d say I’m somewhere in the hundreds. But I do have thousands stored on my computer, and I had been storing them in folders that were grouped by subject and sometimes year, like Hawaii, Jun ’06. Pictures that were not as easily categorized just resided in the parent folder, pictures. And so it was that when Sonja was born, she got her own folder for her pictures on the computer. A folder which grew and grew and grew, with more pictures than I had ever taken before. When I needed to organize the folder, I grouped the pictures by year. Not the calendar year, but her age. So within ages 3-4, the pictures were named A_Sep 2014, all the way to K_Aug 2015. Pictures that didn’t include Sonja lived in the parent folder.

A few days ago, when I was searching for a picture and I couldn’t find it because I was looking in the Sonja folder and not the parent pictures folder, I realized that my daughter is not a category! Why, I wondered, did that take so long to figure out? Maybe because the cat and the dog each have their own folders. Maybe because she’s a category in my filing cabinet. (That file, by the way, is named baby, because the folder was started before she was born, and before she had a name. The file contains hospital information, ultrasounds, her birth certificate and various information from her check-ups. I haven’t bothered to change the file name because I suspect the whole idea of a filing cabinet is on the brink of becoming an anachronism.)

Sonja also has her own baby book, with pictures and stories all about her. I have a baby book and so does my husband, and that’s all that we have to refer to if we want to take a trip down memory lane. Sonja’s book doesn’t contain a fraction of the information available on this blog, nor a fraction of the pictures on my hard drive, and it probably will be accessed a fraction as much as this blog when I want to take that memory lane drive.

Somehow the crystal clear digital age has made so many things so very blurry. And that, I think, was why I didn’t see the obvious – pictures should simply be grouped by year. Calendar year. If I want to see a picture from her birth, I know what year to look in. It may be harder to remember just exactly when that decade old Hawaiian vacation occurred, but now I can tag the pictures for easy searching should my memory fail me on the dates.

I’ve also realized that this new system, which I am currently finalizing, will make it easier to back up my pictures. I always back up my pictures, but it gets really messy trying to figure out what I’ve backed up and what I haven’t. Yes, Hawaii Jun ’06 has been backed up, but how many pictures in the Sonja folder have been archived, and how many need to be? Same with the Sid folder. You get the idea. It’ll be much easier just to have one back up disc per year (providing all the pics from one year can fit on one disc – fingers crossed.)

This new system also saves me the hassle of separating where the pictures came from. I used to separate cell phone pics because the quality was so much lower, and I had some unfounded fear that I might actually try to print them. It’s really a moot point now. Even though the cell phone pic might not be as good as a camera pic, the print would still be fine, or if it wasn’t, I’d only be out like 19 cents. That is much better than not being able to find a picture I’m looking for because I don’t remember that I took it on my cell phone.

This system makes absolute logical sense, which I like and which appeals to my organizational side. But I hate undoing work that I have done, because, even though the system isn’t working, it’s an old and tested system, and I’d hate to forget something that turned out to be a really good idea. This fear is what separates college me from current me (well, one of many things.) I know now that organization in college did take time, I just didn’t notice it because I enjoyed doing it so much. I organized and reorganized all the time. Now I worry about embarking on any projects because I’m going to get interrupted, and half-done organization is no organization at all, so why bother? Current me just wants to stick with the broken system because it’s in place, but old, organizational me won’t go for that. She’ll slap me silly until I get everything in the right place.

So what do you think? How do you organize your digital photos, or do you?

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My Ms. Jackson

There’s a reason that I consider reinstating the Facebook hiatus I’ve been talking about all year – perhaps even permanently – and her name is Shirley Jackson.

I needed things to read during the hiatus, so I turned to my Goodreads “want-to-read” page and scrolled through. I quickly settled on a book called, Life Among the Savages because I like the memoir/autobiography genre, and I like stories about parenting, and it was available at the library. I couldn’t remember who’d recommended this book to me, but it didn’t matter. I needed content.

The library’s copy was well-worn, a paperback that could have stemmed from the book’s original publication in 1953. I started in, and by the time I read this passage on page two, where Jackson is talking about life with her kids, I was a fangirl.

I cannot think of a preferable way of life, but then I have had to make a good many compromises, all told.

I look around sometimes at the paraphernalia of our living – sandwich bags, typewriters, little wheels off things – and marvel at the complexities of civilization with which we surround ourselves; would we be pleased, I wonder, at a wholesale elimination of these things, so that we were reduced only to necessities (coffeepot, typewriters, the essential little wheels off things) and then – this happening usually in the springtime – I begin throwing things away, and it turns out that although we can live agreeably without the little wheels off things, new little wheels turn up almost immediately. This is, I suspect, progress. They can make new little wheels, if not faster than they can fall off things, at least faster than I can throw them away.

This passage was written in 1953 but change “typewriter” to “computer” and as far as I’m concerned, it could have been written  yesterday. I might concede the writing has somewhat of an old-fashioned feel to it, if only because we rarely see sentences and paragraphs and stories constructed with such skill in our current environment, where everyone must share everything they are thinking about immediately. There are plenty of other details throughout the memoir that alert the reader to its time frame, like the author reaching for a cigarette when she went into labor, but the parenting challenges and the house tribulations and the basic necessities of domesticity all relatable to me in the year 2016.

Here’s another favorite passage of mine.

I have always believed, against all opposition, that women think in logical sequence, but it was not until I came to empty the pockets of my light summer coat that year that I realized how thoroughly the housekeeping mind falls into the list pattern, how basically the idea of a series of items, following one another docilely, forms the only possible reasonable approach to life if you have to live it with a home and a husband and children, none of whom would dream of following one another docilely.

There’s so much happening in this one sentence, but it’s the dry wit with which she ends it that is at the heart of Jackson’s writing. I love the juxtaposition of the logical list with the chaotic family. I haven’t wanted to be an author this much since I first read Nick Hornby.

After I finished Life Among the Savages, I had to read more of her stuff. But I found myself in the odd position of having fallen for an author outside of her genre. Shirley Jackson is more of a Stephen King than a Nick Hornby, but I never would’ve guessed it after reading Savages. Luckily, she published another memoir, Raising Demons, before she died at the age of 48, and her kids published a posthumous compilation of short stories, essays and lectures called, Let Me Tell You.

After having read all about her personal life, I felt like I owed it to the woman to read her most famous work, a short story called, The Lottery, which is excellent. The writing is immediately recognizable as Jackson’s, and while it is hard to be surprised by a “surprise” ending, when everyone everywhere tells you, “oh that story has a really surprising ending,” I’m still haunted by it, which is pretty surprising.

I’ve decided when I finish Raising Demons, I’ll have to move on. I won’t read any more of Jackson’s fiction, though I imagine I might read some of the memoirs again. I am so happy that I found my way to Shirley Jackson this year. Reading works like Life Among the Savages remind me not only of how much I enjoy reading, but what I’m striving for as a writer. And I don’t care if the story is from the 1950s or the 1650s or 2015, there’s just nothing better than reading something written by a kindred spirit.

I believe that a story can be made out of any such small combination of circumstances, set up to best advantage and decorated with some use of the imagination; I began writing stories about my children because, more than any other single thing in the world, children possess a kind of magic that makes much of what they do so oddly logical and yet so incredible to grown-ups. (from the compilation Let Me Tell You)

So how about it, dear readers… Who’s your favorite author?

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My Peripherals

If you look to the top right of this page, you’ll see a quote that says, “never admit you can type.*” It’s from State and Main, and I think it’s hilarious. The obvious implication is that if you admit you can type, people will want you to type for them, and the last thing you (or I) want to do is type for somebody else. Typing is boring, but when you do it as fast as I do (in the 100 wpm range), it’s a handy skill to have, particularly if you fancy yourself a writer.

I don’t know if I can pin it on my typing speed, or perhaps all the years of being a flute player, but I’m picky about key action. The standard-issue Dell POS keyboard that’s currently hooked up to your work computer just ain’t gonna cut it. I’ve tested and typed on many keyboards over the years, but for the last ten years or so, I’ve been typing on a sublime Logitech keyboard that I adore, and that Logitech doesn’t make anymore. There is no mushiness; the keys bounce back right away. And the keys cradle your fingers so that your hands feel anchored and stable. It makes a sharp, high clicking sound, one that lets others know you’re typing but doesn’t make you physically ill like the sound of someone trying to use an ergonomic keyboard.

 

Perfection

Perfection

Though not related to typing, this keyboard also had volume control buttons on the right side, parallel to the number pad, and eventually I came to wonder why every keyboard manufacturer doesn’t do this. It’s the P-E-R-F-E-C-T place. My keyboard sits on a keyboard drawer, and when I’m not in full composition mode, it tends to rest half under the desk. So when I need to control the volume, instead of rolling the tray out and finding the button at the top, I could just slide my hand over from the mouse and turn it down. Pure, unadulterated genius.

Volume Control

Volume Control

A few years ago, Sonja broke one of the little kickstands that props the keyboard up, and while I consider this an essential feature, the keyboard and I soldiered on. Thus, I was very sad a few weeks ago when I started having issues with the keyboard. For instance, words that I only typed once started appearing twice. I changed the batteries but that didn’t help. I knew it might be time to put the old workhorse out to pasture, but what on earth could I buy to replace it? What do typists type on?

The internet recommended another Logitech, which is what I’m typing this post on. Gone are the side volume controls, and the finger-cradling keys. But the distance of the key press is shorter, and I might have to admit the response is quicker. I haven’t yet put away the old one – I have tried replacing it before and always come back home. But in this keyboard I may have found a new friend, even though I desperately do not want to admit it. So much so that two weeks in, I still haven’t taken the sheer plastic covering off.

New perfection?

New perfection?

On a related note, I also replaced my mouse. This isn’t as big a deal to me, but I did like my old one with two side control buttons and used it profusely to edit, back when I was editing. I must admit the new mouse, while not quite as comfortable, has so many other great features and advanced technology that I like it better. The only thing that bothers me is the oddly loud clicking noise, but it’s offset by the new, quieter keyboard keys.

So what about you? What do you type on?

 

*Unless you’re reading this post in the future and I’ve changed it.

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My Deprivation

I started this year out on a note of deprivation, vowing to kick my Facebook habit for three months. The experiment went fairly well, with only a few minor slip-ups. I got a significant amount of time back, and I used it to read words by people who put some thought into what they were going to say, and then ran those thoughtfully chosen words by an editor. Thus, the unexpected joy of this “deprivation” led me to undertake other deprivations.

I did a one-month dairy cleanse in February, or more accurately, a 3-week dairy cleanse. (I’ve done plenty of dairy cleanses before, with good reason, and I have over the years learned a little bit more about what my stomach can tolerate.) Somewhere in there, I decided to cut back on sugar, and I blame this and lack of preparation for throwing me off the non-dairy cow.

After getting back on the dairy bandwagon, I decided to try a sugar-detox, wherein not only can you eat no added sugar, you can eat nothing your body processes as sugar, such as fruit or bread or legumes. Had I not given up this pursuit almost immediately, I surely would’ve failed when I started teaching two classes for the first time. The low-carb, paleo and sugar detox ways of life market themselves as effective and science-based, and reasonable as those claims may be, I do not see them as anything more than another diet fad along the lines of Atkins.

As I reflect upon the various deprivations I undertook, it leads me to the not-unique conclusion that the immediacy of our current culture takes away some of the joy of life – of just being in the moment. It seems like such a sneaky and exhilarating way to “cheat” getting fat by letting yourself eat to your heart’s content, the only caveat being that you can’t eat one particular food or food group. But depriving yourself of one food eventually sucks the fun out of eating four helpings of the other food. (And hey, guess what?!? Diets don’t work!) It really is better just to be moderate and sensible in your eating, or your social media, or whatever else it is you blame for ruining your life. Yes, it’s harder too. I’m guessing that it’s harder than it used to be, before the advent of the internet and overnight shipping and midnight chats with long lost acquaintances, but I could be wrong about that. If there’s anything the extra reading I undertook taught me, it’s that after changes upon changes, we are more or less the same. (More on that in a forthcoming post.)

So the tally for the deprivations is Facebook-1, sugar and dairy-0. I would easily undertake another Facebook cleanse, and am really considering logging off until after the election. But bread and cheese, you’re here to stay.

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My Four-and-a-Half Year Old

“Why does the power hafta go out?” my four-and-a-half year old repeatedly asked me last weekend. “Well, it doesn’t have to,” I told her, “I just think it might because it’s so windy outside.” Cue the flicker and the familiar zap/whir of all the lights and electric gadgets shutting off simultaneously. Since it was still daytime, I think Sonja thought I’d just turned off the TV. “What was that pop?” she asked. “The lights went out,” I said. “Yeah, but why did it pop?” she asked again. This continued for several minutes. You get the picture.

We entertained ourselves for a while, playing games and lighting candles. As dinnertime approached, we were all getting bored. We went out to pizza at the best place in town, where Sonja gets to make her own pizza and tell the cooks, “pie up!” To which they respond, loud enough for the entire restaurant to hear, “PIE UP!” and put her pizza in the oven.

Returning home, it looked like we had power. Everybody else around us had power. We clicked the button on the garage door opener. Nothing happened, but that didn’t mean anything. We have to hit that button a minimum of fifty times to get the door to open. Unfortunately, this time, we didn’t actually have power. It was just our street, where a line had been downed. About 6 houses total. Around the region, 150,000 other houses were sans electricity. At this point, we figured we were in it for the long haul.

At 7:30, we made the unanimous decision to spend the night at my parents’ house. Some of this decision was influenced by the fact it was going to be a long night with a scared child in our own house, and some of it was influenced by the fact that without electricity to power his C-PAP machine, my husband (and I) will at the least get a very terrible night’s sleep, and at worst, die (or be killed by me when I can no longer stand the snoring.)

We gathered all the food we wanted to salvage and packed our bags for a night away. Sonja loves packing. She keeps asking if she can pack to go to Canada, a trip we may or may not take this summer. So she was all over this like peanut butter on jelly. She got her backpack and the toys she wanted, clothes, and a few bedtime stories. Packing for an overnight trip is much harder in the dark, and when you are trying to transport the entire contents of your refrigerator and freezer, a life-saving electrical device, a gallon of distilled water to use in the life-saving electrical device, and whatever armload of items that your child hasn’t looked at in months but simply cannot do without for one night. And the dog.

Once we got to the house, put away all the food, and unpacked our things, I then got Sonja into bed, stories read, and nightlight on. That’s when the screaming began. She didn’t want to stay at Grandma’s. She wanted to go home. “But we have no power,” I said. “You’ll have to sleep in the dark.” “But, I don’t want to stay heeeere!” she cried. The dog and I agreed to stay in the room with her until she fell asleep.

At 5 a.m., the screaming recommenced. This time, Sonja said she saw an ant in her bed. Since Shaun was getting ready to leave for work, she got into bed next to me. A few hours later, when she finally got up, I was the only adult person left in the house. A quick check of our security cameras let me know that power had been restored to our own abode, about 13 hours after it left us. So I made the beds, packed up all the groceries and all our stuff, and the dog. 50 button presses later, the garage door opened and I unpacked all of the groceries, all of our stuff, and the dog. By 10:00 a.m., I was feeling like I’d done more than a day’s work. And that’s when the questions started again, in earnest. “Mom, when will the power go out again so we can stay at Grandma’s?”

And that’s pretty much everything you need to know about a four-and-a-half year old.

Christmas morning with the "chocolate-making thing" that she asked Santa for.

Christmas morning with the “chocolate-making thing” that she asked Santa for.

 

 

New haircut.

New haircut.

Kids' Build day at the Home Depot.

Kids’ Build day at the Home Depot.

Playing in muddy puddles.

Playing in muddy puddles.

Sound asleep and hanging on for the ride.

Sound asleep and hanging on for the ride.

No power.

No power. 3-13-16

 

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My Super Taster

On a busy Monday at my local chain grocery store, in the prepared foods aisle, I overheard an interesting conversation. A young woman of twenty-something was shopping with her mom, obviously in a hurry to get the hell out of the grocery store. So far, I can completely empathize. The girl asked her mom to pick out some macaroni and cheese, telling her that she, “literally didn’t care what kind.” Mom hesitated. She asked Daughter a question. “Mom, I said I didn’t care. Just pick something.” Mom apologized, and said she was considering the price. Macaroni and cheese was selected, and they hurried on throughout the store, the woman probably not caring about dozens of other food items. Continue reading

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My Canuck

Towards the end of my daughter’s four-year well-child checkup four moths ago, our doctor asked me if I had any questions or concerns that we hadn’t covered. I took a deep breath and valiantly and successfully fought the urge to spill the beans about her obsession with Canada. I thought it was a little strange, and I was growing weary of it, but decided medical intervention was not necessary.

This past summer, some of you may recall, we took a much anticipated vacation to Victoria, Canada. The vacation lasted a mere two nights, and really could not have ended sooner. Two things that exhaust me like no other are 1) vacations and 2) listening to my child whine endlessly. Put those two together and I start tearing my hair out.

Due to all the complaints lodged within the confines of Canada, I didn’t anticipate the incessant nagging to go back to Canada that would still be going on 10 weeks later, at that checkup. Perhaps it was just a phase, I thought, some new way of processing events and memories that four-year-olds go through. I really didn’t anticipate that six months later, she would still be asking to go back on a daily basis. I especially didn’t anticipate the events that would stick out in her memory. The ferry boat with the ice cream? Yes, of course. But what she really wants is to go back to the same hotel, in the same room, so she can watch TV and eat snacks. Victoria isn’t a particularly child-friendly place, but we did what we could to make it fun. The sightseeing, the petting zoo, the high tea, the shopping – none of that is ever brought up. But man, that hotel room with that tiny little table and the tiny little kitchen and the closet where she put her shoes was the most fun a then three-year-old could have. She’s willing to move to Canada permanently, if only we can stay in that room. (And hey, if Trump becomes president, she just might get her wish. *Ba dum dum crash*)

Here’s how much she has invested in that trip. We’ve told her that someday we’re going to take her to Disneyland. When we ask her if she wants to go to Disneyland this summer, she says Canada this summer, Disneyland next Summer. I know kids are persistent, but that’s what I call commitment.

Will her dream come true? Possibly. My intention was not to vacation at all this summer. I thought spending some money on the house and not exhausting ourselves would be the better option. But at this point I’d do just about anything to get her to stop asking to go back to Canada, even going back to Canada.

The Embassy Inn

The World’s Best (Apparently) Hotel Room

20150809_200446

Watching TV (snacks not pictured) in the World’s Best Hotel Room.

 

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My Alternative Social Media Sites Review

Eschewing Facebook has left me with some time to fill, and I’ve been trying to fill it with other social media. This is somewhat contrary to my goal, but there’s nothing out there so all-consuming as Facebook (for me), so thankfully, I am still forced to fill time in other ways. But there are still times when I’m left with a small gap to fill and nothing around but a phone, so I thought I’d do a little review of the other social media sites I have been using. By the way, Twitter will not be a part of this review because I hate it. I always have, I always will. It’s 140-characters of pure yawn. But on to other sites, like…

Instagram

I only got access to Instagram last year when I finally made the transition to a smartphone. Instagram takes me about 40 seconds to check, unlike Facebook, which would take me 40 minutes. There isn’t as much activity on Instagram as Facebook, and I’ve also limited my following list. I like that Instagram’s feed is stable. None of the Facebook bullshit where you might see a post from a friend 18 hours after they posted it, 3 days, or not at all. Instagram posts are always there and always in the same order. Advertising exists but is minimal, and not so annoyingly click-baity, like Facebook’s ads. However, I don’t like the fact that all pictures must be cropped square. I’m not a professional photographer, but I don’t take my pictures with squares in mind and more often than not it ruins the composition. I’m also not really interested in playing with the filters.

Pinterest

I find pinterest useful but cluttered. For every fantastic idea I get, like putting the kid’s cups in baskets on a shelf that she can reach, I have to wade through 100 listicles. My recent favorite was, “7 ways to get the pee smell out of your bathroom.” I didn’t read it, because I’m pretty sure there’s just the one way. Clean. Anyway, I search for lots of things on Pinterest, including teaching ideas and recipes, but mostly I like looking at the pretty houses and trying to get ideas for my house. Ads exist but are minimal. And I can pin articles and other things I find on my own, on the world wide web at large, to my boards, so I can access them again. I find this incredibly handy. Pinterest seems to get more needy the more you use it, though. If I access it, then an hour later I inevitably have an e-mail about more things I should see. If you leave it alone, it leaves you alone.

Goodreads

I love the idea of Goodreads. A place to keep track of all your readings and reviews, and it doesn’t matter where you bought the book or if you borrowed it. The monthly Goodreads newsletters are ones I don’t mind getting, especially the section with new works by authors I’ve read. Occasionally they have interviews with authors that you don’t see elsewhere. Having said all that, I truly hate the Goodreads website. It is a disastrous mess of confusion. Trying to get a book on your shelf and leave a review is not intuitive. Trying to figure out something new is near impossible. It has a feature that you can set the date you started reading a book, but then it’s very difficult to get the book off your “currently reading” shelf if you abandon it. I finally found that option on the mobile app the other day, but I’ve got books on my list that I’ve been “reading” for four years, because there was no way to move or delete them. I set up a whole shelf called “abandoned,” only to realize that all books must be on one of the three main shelves (read, currently-reading, want-to-read) in addition to whatever shelves you create on your own. I’m trying to use the site now to keep track of all the wonderful reading I’m doing while I’m not checking Facebook, but probably at some point I will throw up my hands and say “forget it!” like I always do. There is a social component to Goodreads, in that you can see what your friends are reading or have read, but I don’t find this very interesting. It’s nice to know that friends are reading, but I don’t really care what they’re reading.

LinkedIn

Bwahahahahahaha! Just kidding! I deleted my LinkedIn account a few months ago in an attempt to get them to stop frigging e-mailing me, and it seems to have worked. I have never been happier to take personal information offline.

Reddit, YouTube and the Rest

I guess I’m too old to be a real social media “guru.” I occasionally try to get into reddit, but I can’t. I actually found a subreddit devoted exclusively to tea, and even that couldn’t keep me hooked. I post the occasional video to YouTube for posterity and watch the occasional viral video, but that’s it. I’ve heard of Snapchat and Tumblr and Periscope, but I just…I just don’t care. They feel like the fads of a younger generation. They’ll burn bright and fast, and at the end of the day we’ll be left with Facebook, Twitter, and God-willing, an updated UI for the Goodreads site.

I think the way I feel about these social media sites, with varying degrees of interest but not addiction, is the way regular people feel about Facebook. It’s there, they use it, maybe sometimes they use it more than other times, but it’s just a website. Breaking the cycle has been good for me, and I hope to wind up in a place where Facebook holds the same allure as Instagram. It’s all right in a pinch. Facebook, by the way, doesn’t make it easy to quit. It hammers me with emails, several a day, telling me that I’ve missed a bunch of stuff and I should come back and see what’s going on. Imagine what an evil person you’d be if you were constantly trying to entice the local recovering alcoholic to your house with the promise of all the good drinks he’d been missing out on. Facebook knows it’s a monolith built on the shaky soil of social media. It is rightfully worried about the day people realize there are better ways to spend their time.

 

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My Things I Would’ve Said on Facebook

Well, it’s been a week since I have been on Facebook. I’ve done week-long cleanses before, but this time I’m going for the gold of a three-month hiatus. Facebook, by the way, gets very clingy if you don’t call for a few days. It starts sending out e-mails, trying to entice you back with news of notifications and messages. The whole thing reeks of desperation.

Not checking Facebook has freed up an enormous amount of time, but I have not been able to rid myself of the instinct to post to Facebook. So here are the things I would’ve probably said on Facebook this week.

First, I would’ve shared this cartoon because this is how, as a teacher, I felt all winter break and then the night before classes started up again.

ZitsInspiration

Then there would have been several posts about Justified. Some would’ve said how good it was. Others would have been laments that now that I have binge-watched to my heart’s content, I have no more Justified to binge-watch. I might’ve tried to crowdsource suggestions from fellow Facebookers as to what series I should watch next, but this hasn’t been a very successful endeavor in the past, so probably best that I didn’t have access.

I would’ve shared the following picture of a very upsetting garlic toast mishap:

IMG_20160104_1807514

I also would’ve shared these pictures of the cat and the kid being adorable.

If I fits, I sits

If I fits, I sits

IMG_1996

Sonja Selfie

And I would’ve said these things, without pictures.

-Sonja is making up a song which would be titled, “The chicken ran away from Christmas.”

-My desk goes from zero to berserk in 2 seconds flat.

-“I never think environmental hazards are going to kill me. I only think serial killers are.” From Why Not Me? by Mindy Kaling.

-It turns out, when too stressed to think about what I should be eating every second of the day, I will eat nothing but cheese.

And there you have it. Phew! I feel better now.

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My 2015 Blogging Stats

For future reference, self.

https://suitejen.wordpress.com/2015/annual-report/

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