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May 5th, 2016

For some reason, I like to keep my book review posts on their own, so there will be another post sometime later today with a couple of reviews.

First off, exciting times! While this DOES NOT COUNT, as tomorrow is my official weighing day, I couldn't help but take a picture anyway. The first time I've been under 200 since I went away to college (multiple decades ago).



Now I just have to eat really, really good today so it doesn't go up for my official weighing tomorrow. :D (And yes, I'm bad, I can't help but weigh myself every single day. Yes, it makes me crazy. But I also think it makes me more accountable for my day-to-day eating.)

For a couple reasons, I think I'm going to move to Kaiser insurance when we're able to switch. Money is part of it (they're the cheapest plan by far), but also gonzostar posted some information on coverage of skin removal, and it seems like it will be a much easier process there. I'm not 100% sure I want to have it done (surgery, eek!), but my surgeon said I have about 15 pounds of stomach skin (can you imagine?), and getting my breasts done would be another big chunk, so I almost want to have it done for "easy" loss off ~25 pounds.

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Stardew Valley people: I found an easy way to get a screenshot of your whole farm. Go to http://upload.farm, upload your save file (open Windows Explorer, enter %appdata%, and you can find it from there), and you get a page like mine, scroll down to the bottom for the map. You can see my farm and all my game stats there.

orangerful had said I had a had a good farm, which started my quest to make that screenshot. As you can see, my farm SUCKS. I hadn't even realized how bad it was until I saw that overhead shot. So much wasted space! I think I'm going to scrap the whole thing and start over.


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I'm spinning my wheels right now on so much stuff. My vacation is coming up in less than a month, and there's so much I have to do/plan, I'm so nervous about so much. (I really hate my brain sometimes.) Even though I'm planning on leaving my apartment four hours before my flight (leaving two hours for what should be just over a 30 minute drive, but it'll be rush hour, and two hours for security and such), I'm so worried something will happen and I'll miss it.

Also, I had thought I wouldn't have to check my bag, but it's a couple inches too big, so I guess I'll have to. That's not such a big deal on the outgoing leg, but onto the returning home leg, I have a 45 minute layover (shorter than I'd like), so I have no idea if I or my bag will make it... Plus there's always the worry that someone might steal your bag during luggage claim.

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Though it's still early, I'm plotting and planning things for my move. I'd like to be rid of my sofa, but I had no idea how hard of a task that is. If I have someone come in to haul it away, it will be a minimum of $150! It's way too big for me to get out of my apartment myself, otherwise I could sneak it into the apartment complex trash (not supposed to dump furniture there, but people do).

I'm semi-considering buying a saw and, assuming it's made of wood inside, breaking it down into smaller pieces that I can take out during the night myself (putting a sheet down to contain any mess). However, I have no idea of a number of things: How expensive a saw is. What I would do with the saw after. If it's made of wood inside or if there are metal bars. How big of a job it would be to saw a sofa into pieces myself.

I will NOT be buying a new sofa to replace it. :P

2016 books: Ebon Moon, The Three Feathers

Ebon Moon by Dennis McDonald
Rating: Disliked (Hated-Disliked-Okay-Liked-Loved)



The best thing by far about this book was the cover.

The story opened with a stereotypical/cliche horror scene: A couple is making out in a pickup truck in the woods. Woman hears a noise. Man is all "It's nothing, baby, show me those tits of yours." Woman repeats that she heard something, but lifts her shirt for him anyway. Werewolf attacks and kills them both.

And that was the last we saw of the werewolves. Book went on and on about a woman who had been abused and escaped her husband. I was feeling no connection with the characters or the story, so checked Amazon reviews, and others said how the characters weren't developed and it was hard to care about them, so I gave up on the book. (Didn't reach the 50% point, so doesn't count towards the year's total.)


The Three Feathers by Stefan Bolz
Rating: Okay (Hated-Disliked-Okay-Liked-Loved)



This was a weird story. I said that over and over as I was reading it. Not weird in a bad way, but just very strange and felt "off" and disturbingly familiar but I couldn't put my finger on how/why.

It's a "talking animal" story, and perhaps the most realistic, believable animal characters I've ever read in one, and yet I stopped reading at the 35% point.

The story opened with a rooster. A perfectly normal, plain rooster. Yet he had a dream about three feathers (which gave him the strongest feeling of happiness/love), and that started him on a quest to find them. (Again, he was just a plain rooster, nothing special or more intelligent about him, yet the idea of him going on a quest worked.) Along the way, he picked up a wolf companion (seems a wacky idea, but through a stretch I could go along with believing it could happen). Then the two picked up an old warhorse companion.

All along the story that far, I had the strong, strong feeling the story was supposed to be a metaphor or allegory or something like that. Some religious, perhaps non-Christian/non-western religion idea? I couldn't put my finger on it, and it was driving me crazy.

Then I remembered there was a German story, Town Musicians of Bremen. From wiki: "In the story a donkey, a dog, a cat, and a rooster (or hen), all past their prime years in life and usefulness on their respective farms, were soon to be discarded or mistreated by their masters. One by one they leave their homes and set out together." So it sort of fit that, if you drop the cat and make the donkey into a horse.

As their quest continued, they freed a pegasus who had been trapped as a statue, and she told the horse that no creature is born a pegasus, but all horses could become one if they learned to let go of the boundaries they believed they have. (Which again pinged me as maybe being some theme from some religion? Or something? Arg!)

Unfortunately the book's pacing was really, really bad, so slow that even with the well-written animal characters, I was too bored to continue it.

Edit: AH HA! The author wrote another book, The Dawning of the True Self: The Spiritual Journey in The Three Feathers. I was right, it was supposed to be some religious thing. It's based on A Course in Miracles, which looks like some mishmash of New Age stuff, and the author states that Jesus guided her writing of it.

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