psalm_onethirtyone: (Cascade Pond)
So. I finally finished the religion/history paper that was bringing about my doom, and now it's time to start the contemporary religion paper that is going to be the doom of the next few weeks. Delightful! I met with the professor about the first paper, and she essentially told me that I was choking on writing it because I was overprepared. And then when I said I was a neurotic overachiever she agreed. XD So there's that.

It's hard to believe that in fewer than six weeks my poetry study will be over. It's basically one of the best things I've ever done, and I'm... I don't want to stop. The professor who's doing that with me loves dogs and poetry, so I'm buying him a copy of Sharon Creech's Love That Dog as a thank-you gift.

Last Sunday I did the hive consolidation for our bees essentially on my own (there was a sophomore assisting me, but she kind of stood thirty feet away the whole time). That was really exciting and it felt really cool to be doing something like that, to be responsible... I got stung nine times, once on the back of the neck, and I'm not dead! That was exciting too. Only I didn't have the guts to pinch the queen, so I put her in a tupperware and when she died I gave her to the entomology professor.

Maria has decided that she wants to be an entomologist. I think it's really cool; I also think it's a job where she can do stuff that's both academic and intellectually stimulating, and lots of fieldwork and stuff that's hands-on. I think she'd be bored and miserable in an office or at a teaching job, but entomology has lots of practical application and also bees. AWESOME. I'm really proud of her.

I applied for the intercollegiate honours society yesterday, which was torture -- with the application in front of me I couldn't think of a single noteworthy thing I'd ever done. >_> Luckily it's sent off and I never have to look at it again, and I don't really care if I get in -- I only applied because Daddy really wanted me to.

My mama called me on Monday night to tell me that my cat, Calico, was hit on the road and killed. She was thirteen, so I am torn between 'well she lived a long full life' and 'but I've had her since I was a wee kid!'. I told Maria that I was sad that she'd never get to bite me again (she was also the meanest, nastiest cat in existence), and Maria said she was probably in purgatory, biting the sinners. It's an amazingly comforting image. Callie would have no place in heaven. Mama said that to replace her I can have one of the kittens in the barn, so I'm looking forward to trying to catch one of them to tame. Actually, I'll be catching all of them if I can, because I think she wants to try and tame one for my cousin Johanna, who's decided she really wants a DLH for Christmas (although Johanna wants her DLH to have a smush-face, which I think is kind of ugly, and these kitties don't have them).

On Monday I'll be sitting on a panel to raise awareness for invisible illnesses, discussing bipolar disorder! That's pretty cool.

I also finally got paid by the church, so I'll be able to pay the guy who did the photography and digital editing for my picture book, which is a relief, because I feel like the worst client ever right now. >_> He asked about payment two weeks ago and I had to tell him that I hadn't got the money yet. The editing is almost done; right now I'm working on putting the individual pieces together into pages, which is harder than I thought it would be. I only have three done.

I've been watching a hilarious Let's Play of Silent Hill 4 lately, which is pretty much my only "fun" outlet besides RP. Oh, school.

So that's all the content of the last month, I think. Now I'll go back to posting contextless poetry and stupid Tweets about religion films (another one to-morrow! :D).
psalm_onethirtyone: (Cascade Pond)
I:

got to start watching the Illbleed Let's Play; finally got my paycheque; am not working until Wednesday; had ice cream and black raspberries; got my toenails painted rainbow by a lady at church; had a nap to-day; had a bicycle ride to-day; am planning to make cupcakes to-morrow with the fresh cherries we didn't can; got to ride in Maria's Miata; have the cutest fishies in the world; DON'T WORK UNTIL WEDNESDAY; found out strawberries can prevent/cure cancer; got a Tom Waits album from Maria's boyfriend; will sleep in to-morrow.

And it wasn't a million degrees outside, either.

Mmm, summer.
psalm_onethirtyone: (Spinny Wheel of Death)
I am... pretty much hot and miserable.

I am not sure how, but I ended up with the job of taking care of the poults, and the chicks (which arrive Friday), so to-morrow I will be getting the brooder shed ready for them, which involves evicting the broody turkey hen and moving her eggs to the incubator, papering the floor, and making cardboard fences to keep them separate from each other to begin with. I wouldn't mind except to-morrow is supposed to be SO. HOT. OMG. ;___;

To-day's visits were kind of fun; my first client is one who I've seen before and I really like, she keeps me really busy with cleaning and errands and things, and to-day she let me wash and brush her hair. My second client was new, but she was friendly and very nice. This is certainly a job that involves not judging anybody by appearance -- which is not to say that I make a habit of judging people based on how they look or live, but a lot of the people I visit are very low-income and live in kind of terrible houses, and I know they're what people think of when they say "white trash" and "rednecks", but so many of them are really kind and mostly lonely. And a lot of them have also lived through very tough circumstances. It makes me understand more and more that the only way to approach people is with compassion.

I did get a lecture Monday on how having babies out of wedlock is degenerate and immoral, and everybody -- including Catholic priests and gay people -- should be allowed to marry, which I thought was kind of a fun contrast.

Also, my morning lady said, "I really like you, so they're probably going to get rid of you or something!" and I admitted that I would be leaving the agency at the end of summer, and she said, "And they'll replace you with somebody crap! I know how they do!" I'll be honest, I was really flattered.

But now I am going to go back to sitting in my chair wishing I were dead because of the heat. Maria accused me of not having a real job to-day because a lot of my client houses are air conditioned, whereas she goes lifting beehives around in the heat. Then Mama said we should both shut up because this morning at work she got sprayed in the face with diarrhea. :D
psalm_onethirtyone: (Stellini D'Oro)
Happy barricade day pt. 1!

My job is going really well so far -- it's pretty tiring, but I do like it a lot. Pretty much I just go to the houses of homebound people and do housework, chores, make meals, and do personal care, so not bad. The toughest part has been giving bed baths to one of my ladies, just because she has a hard time moving and I'm so anxious about accidentally hurting her while getting her to shift around for me.

Maria, meanwhile, is loving her job as a state bee inspector. We kind of play a game where we joke about whose job is worse, but I always win, because no matter how many times she says bee stings or sketchy Mennonites, I can always say bedpans and get an instant victory. :P

I am also still getting along nicely on my sekrit summer project -- set up the first of my dates with the photographer. Very cool! So excited! :D :D :D

Other than that I am fairly boring. I tend to come home in the evening and be too tired for anything involving much activity or brain power, although Maria did talk me into a fairly strenuous bike ride to-day which nearly killed me, but then we picked wild strawberries on the bank on our way home. Everything is so beautiful it's absolutely crazy. It either smells like honeysuckle or cow manure, both of which are glorious smells in their own right, and the hayfields are all being mown (we brought in three-hundred and eighty-eight bales over the last week, plus two-hundred that we sold outright). Three turkey poults have hatched, two more are on the way, and we get thirty chicks on Friday (keets a little later). The farm down the road has ducklings and calves. I love it so much.

Anyway, to-morrow I work! From one to nine, which is kind of a stupid shift, but whatevs.

Mama is actually getting kind of excited to meet Jen, to whom she refers only as "that girl you like", so that is promising, although I hope it doesn't make it too awkward when they finally do meet.

Yeah. As I said, a bit boring really. But doing well!
psalm_onethirtyone: (Disappointed)
So I'm sure everyone is desperately interested in hearing the continuation of the Saga of the Insurance Company from Hell (yes, you are).

Yesterday my doctor told me that she had called the insurance company again and faxed them being all URGENT URGENT MY PATIENT IS DYING PLZ SEND HER HER MEDS, and she assured me, when I phoned, that they had told her I would be authorised to have them within twenty-four hours. So this morning I ran to the pharmacy, because I'm out again.

Where the pharmacist told me, as nicely as possible, that the insurance company had NOT authorised my scrip and everyone was now out for the weekend, so it was unlikely I would be authorised until Tuesday. He also suggested that I call the insurance company and grovel to them on Tuesday. In the meantime, I could buy some meds out of pocket.

Now, because the pill I'm taking does not come in 225 mg caps, which is the dose I take, I have to take three 75 mg caps every day. Which means in order to get by until Tuesday, I had to buy twelve caps instead of four. And because Mama is broke right now, I paid for them with my birthday money. ;___; Which is just a minor complaint, honestly, because at least I have money, but I am whinging because I wanted to get art supplies with it.

So my plan is to call the insurance company on Tuesday. Yayyy! In the meantime, I have incredibly expensive medication, and a twelve-hour shift at work to-morrow.

On the PLUS SIDE, Maria and Mama and I went clothes shopping to-day and I managed to find two pairs of jeans that fit, as well as a really cute denim skirt and even a pair of shorts (which is disguised to look like a skirt, which suits me just fine). Which is great, since usually the fact that I am shaped exactly like a hobbit makes clothes shopping a fairly traumatic experience. I also made cupcakes for a party to-morrow that I will not get to go to, but they turned out really nicely! Even though I burnt my hands, bleh.

Yeah. If it weren't for this insurance thing, my life would be going pretty nicely overall.
psalm_onethirtyone: (Cephalopods Need Heart)
So, a little update on what's going on in Soujin-land!

1. I should be asleep right now, but I'm not; for some reason I am not sleeping very well lately, which has led to me sleeping in too late in an effort to get some sleep at all. Last night I had only had four hours, and I still was awake for an hour after turning off the lights and lying down. That's stupid. Anyway.

2. Still at [livejournal.com profile] mhari's! Having a good time! We are mostly just being colossal dorks with each other, although yesterday we went to the New England Aquarium and it was good times. There were lovely lovely comb jellies and a petting tank with starfish and urchins and horseshoe crabs and a skate, and ANOTHER petting tank with some really gorgeous rays -- both the round Atlantic type and these adorable cownoses, which are so sweet omg. They come right up and bonk your hands. We weren't supposed to touch their bellies, but they kept swimming over and flapping at our hands! Anyway, they have the most amazing texture -- like slightly slimy velvet. So cool. Unfortunately we had to go home before we could visit the octopus, but they had LION'S MANE JELLIES. OMG. Little tiny ones! I am used to conceiving of Lion's Manes in terms of, you know, these VAST MONSTERS with tentacles that get up to thirty feet long. It somehow never occurred to me that they might start out as wee little babbies. So that was pretty sweet.

We also saw some adorbs frogs, although the surinam toad was hiding. :(

Also, [livejournal.com profile] mhari bought me a blue whale plushie for my birthday. He is enormous and so soft; his name is Captain Shakespeare.

3. I got a job! I start on the twenty-third. It's caregiver work, which is great -- I basically was going to die if I had to take another horrible depressing retail job, so the fact that I get to work with people but in a useful, helpful capacity is fantastic. I'm really looking forward to starting. I don't even know what my wage is and I DON'T CARE.

4. Still haven't figured out this birthday party stuff. Mama said I could have one, but everybody's weird places at weird times and I'm really not sure if it will actually happen. :/ Not a super big deal, I guess.

5. My awesome Summer Project is coming along surprisingly nicely. I bought more stuff for it here, and I can't wait to get back to work on it.

6. Maria and I are going to rock this world this summer. We're both full-time, forty-hours-a-week employed, but we are going to make a list of all the summer films we HAVE TO SEE (like Thor, and First Class) and then DO IT. Cos we can. In between, of course, we will work our asses off and keep bees, because we're rad like that.

7. I am going to make the time to start bicycling again, gdi. I really miss getting to go on long bike rides, and Maria said she wants to start biking too, so it's going to happen. My hope is also that once I start doing something that at least looks like exercise, Mama will get off my case about being fat. THIS HAD BETTER WORK. I do not have the time to squash real exercise in on top of everything else.

8. Chiiiicks! Keeeeets! They're coming June first. I am so super excite.

9. Mama has a new bunny, I don't think I mentioned. It is dopey and very pretty and scares the hell out of the cats.

10. We might actually get internet at home this summer. This one guy up on Gamby Hill is thinking of building a reception tower because he is crazy as pants and apparently wants to be able to get internet, even though we live out in the sticks and most people are Mennonite. If this happens, the whole valley would have internet potentially, so that might actually happen. It would be pretty sweet, I have to say.

11. I am watching a playthrough on YouTube of Deadly Premonition, which is a really neat video game. Also, the guy doing the playthrough is great -- so deadpan and sarcastic and unfazed by everything that happens in the game. LOVE him.

12. That's really all atm. Basically I am busy and scattered and kind of crazy, so if there is something I should be doing with you/in general, please let me know. I'M WORKING ON IT. There are a lot of caps in my life, is what I'm saying, but I still am trying to beat the dialup into submission every night from 10 to 1, so hit me up, I will probably be around.

Although this may all be irrelevant come Saturday and the rapture. :P

Anyway, in the words of the Pope, ciao.
psalm_onethirtyone: (This is My Way out of This)
Going home in half an hour for Easter break -- technically we only get Friday off, but I turned in all my work early so I could be home during Holy Week. I'm very excited. Holy Week is my favourite liturgical holiday and I always spend it with my family, so I'm really glad that that's worked out this year as well.

Did the Sunday of the Passion of the Palms[1] last Sunday at the Catholic services in my dormitory basement. I have come to the conclusion that I might have been meant to be a Catholic priest instead of an Episcopalian pastor: Catholics get to dress up pretty, swing around censors at stuff, the homily is only five minutes, and half the service is sung for no good reason. Also, Latin. Sadly, I am still a woman, and the Catholic church is still headed by jerks, so it's not going to happen.

The Catholic priest who does the services is really good, though. He has a good rapport with the students, he knows how to make the homilies thoughtful and relevant, and he's just a very nice guy. I almost don't mind that he won't let me receive communion. :P

--Aaaand I just got a sweary phone call from Maria. Apparently Daddy misdirected her to the Poconos by way of Jim Thorpe instead of getting her home, so she's going to be a few hours late. D: That should make for a nice, tense dinner. Eesh. I am too sleepy to be super upset, not gonna lie.

[1] The priest insisted on making sure we were aware that the correct name for the day is not Palm Sunday, but Sunday of the Passion of the Palms. This is fair; I have also heard it called Passion Sunday.
psalm_onethirtyone: (Red-Letter Day of Wishing)
There are so many exciting things to say here--last night we went to see Old Crow Medicine Show perform in Jim Thorpe, and all six of them signed the hoodie I bought, and Ketch kissed Maria, and they played Take 'Em Away and I Hear Them All and Tell it to Me, and Maria and I both danced ourselves to exhaustion on the beer-slicked dance floor--we went clothes shopping too and I found some actual nice jeans which I have never been able to do, and the most adorable white dress with purple flowers around the hem that makes me look like a '50s housewife from a magazine ad spot--and I caught the orange kitten who lives in the barn and named him Hawkeye and he is a dollface but very scared still--and OLD CROW MEDICINE SHOW YOU GUYS--and I have to make two cakes by to-night for the yard sale to-morrow and it's going to kill me--

but I think the most important thing I wanted to say is that I signed into my e-mail just now and [livejournal.com profile] mhari is the most wonderful friend anybody could have, and I am so lucky. I don't know how I turned out so lucky.
psalm_onethirtyone: (Therefore Be Free)
The good: we got the bees in just right. We picked them up in their nuke box from Andy, drove them home, waited until dusk, and then put them into their new hive. They seem to have settled right in, and we're going to check them to-morrow to see how they're doing, as far as the queen and such.

My fish remember me; I went and sat by the pond yesterday and the day before and they sucked on my toes, which is the weirdest and nicest feeling. One of them has a super long tail. He's really beautiful.

I am in charge of monitoring the broody hens, since Maria will be away about the time their clutches are due! I'm so excited. I have to go in and check them every day and see if they have chicks or poults, and take them away right away if they do. Then I whisk them upstairs to the brooder shed that we have slapdash put together in the laundry room.

Maria and I finally saw Iron Man 2, which was awesome, and then spent the afternoon at Michael's spending the gift card I got for my birthday--we bought all this cake decorating stuff we've been coveting for ages, a beautiful set of dyes and cake glitter in two colours and shimmer in one. We're making cookies to-morrow so we can use it all. We're super excited. To-day we cleaned the house while Mama was at work so she wouldn't be in such a bad mood when she got home (she and Dad are arguing about horse fencing again).

the bad: Perci died while I was away at [livejournal.com profile] mhari's. Mama thinks she didn't keep him moist enough, which I don't know if that's true or not but I don't want to say that it is because I know she'll just feel worse. I haven't buried him just yet, but I will to-morrow. Dad says he lived a really long time for a hermit crab, but since all the websites say you can keep them alive for ages I feel like I just screwed up somehow.

One of the barn kittens died, but I didn't notice in time, so the barn cat moved all the rest of them somewhere else and I didn't see where. I am going to look for them to-morrow--I think they're still in the barn because she's still lurking around in that area and there's plenty of warm, dry hay that's gone loose. I have to bring a flashlight, though, since I tried a cursory look around yesterday and couldn't actually seen in most places.

So--that's all the news.
psalm_onethirtyone: (Sugar Magnolia (Sweet Blossom Come On))
Hey, y'all? My sister just started her first day at college, and she's feeling really lonely and sad and in need of some cheering up. If you have any links to stuff that is fun/distracting/always makes you feel better, please post them here! I am looking for all suggestions, but particularly that which will induce laughter. :D
psalm_onethirtyone: (Dye My Eyes and Call Me Pretty)
I am planning my untimely death from pre-school nerviness. The professors, they keep sending me e-mails! I have to write down all this stuff and I haven't got a notebook here with me! Ngggah. Also my God no one sells Diet Dr. Pepper it is completely immoral and barbaric.

But the sunsets here are really nice. The lake tends to turn white from the light shining off it, and it stretches pretty far, white and still and shining.

Maria finally stopped getting angry at me; we've been watching loads of X-Men: Evolution, and it's cheered her up unbelievably. It's so nice to have her reasonably happy again. And to-morrow we're going home; I'll pack up the last of my things and by Sunday afternoon I should be settled in at school again, which I'll be glad to be. I think most of anything I hate transitioning. I don't mind changes, and I have a hard time feeling displaced; I sort of make where-ever I am my home; but I really, really hate travelling to get there, or the jittery feeling you get when something's about to change but hasn't gotten around to it yet. Ugh ugh.

I think the Depakote might be working, though. The screaming in my head has gone away, and I don't really feel as angry any more. I still get irritated and stressed out, but I'm not just absolutely furious at everyone. So! Little forward steps.
psalm_onethirtyone: (Slightly Confuzzled - Holly Brook)
So to-day was tolerably insane.

Maria and I went to St. Barnabas' to volunteer this morning, which I think we've done for about four years now--it's really fun, basically it's a week-long summer camp for teeny inner-city kids and "volunteering" is code for "cooking them nommy foods and watching them run around and terrorise the church ladies which is deeply satisfying". And for a couple of years we've had the misfortune to be doing our shift on the same day as these two kind of awful ladies from church who pretty much spend the whole time complaining that the kids are poor so they should eat whatever they get and be grateful for it, and claim that food allergies are just the kids trying to take advantage of something idek it's very weird and entitled and bitchy. To-day the kids were going out to one of the state camps in Halifax to go swimming and do recreational stuff and so we packed them lunches instead of cooking them a hot lunch to eat at the Lutheran church in Harrisburg. So while Maria and I were putting sandwiches in their lunch bags, we noticed that whoever had started packing them before us had left the price tag on every single item of food already packed.

And then we both expended great self-restraint and instead of slamming our heads repeatedly against the wall we went through and picked every single individual price tag off all of the foods.

It probably wasn't anybody's fault or intentional or anything, it's just that after an hour of listening to reasonably well-off older white women complain about what a cross to bear it is to make food for these kids I was about at the end of my patience and. yeah.

Hilariously, one of the kids did come up to Maria and tell her she reminded him of Darth Vader; she pushed her baseball cap down over her face and made horrible breathing noises.

After St. Barnabas' we went to the doctor's because Maria needed a bunch of shots prior to going to college. And she kind of mentioned that she doesn't like shots; what she failed to tell me is that she gets sick when she gets shots. She was acting a little strained while we were leaving and as soon as we were outside she told me she was going to throw up and started sobbing. So I drove her home. I just. I am such a total weenie and I cry over everything and I make a big deal about the littlest injuries, but I have no problem whatsoever with shots and actually enjoy giving blood. And Maria is this tough, strong farm girl with biceps the size of large rocks who can handle pretty much any situation, and she was a total mess. So I told her jokes and played her favourite CD and she was mostly okay when we got home, although she was nauseous for the rest of the day.

But she and Mama hung out during the afternoon, which I think made her feel better. I went and holed up in my room with a movie.

Aaaand then in the evening we drove up to Mama's coworker's house to get Ando! Only instead of Ando we ended up getting Spock and McCoy. They are two of the teensiest, fluffiest little grey furballs you ever saw, with little sweet faces and blue eyes. Spock has shorter fur and stays very calm most of the time and was okay with being smacked at by Hiro, whereas McCoy has really long silky fur and she is a total wreck. She hid under the radiator as soon as we got home. However! I pulled her out and snuggled her all during our family movie time this evening and by the time it was over she was drooped over me like a puddlecat. Her nickname is Tube Sock and Spock's is Pancake; these are fairly apt physical descriptions. Hiro does not like them, but I think he will learn to cope. Maggie has already figured out that they are not single servings of kitten nuggets and is contenting herself with eating all their food when I'm not looking.

And now! I have had all of three hours' sleep last night, been up since six-thirty this morning, run to Harrisburg, Duncannon, Newport, and Dalmatia, and dear lord I am so tired I can barely see. But we made the swing we've been talking about for two years yesterday, and it's wonderful.

I told Mama Tuesday, food is like religion. It is neither good or bad. It has no moral value. It just is. The only way you can make it good or bad is through use and interpretation. Calories just are. They exist. I ate food to-day. There's nothing wrong with that. On the other hand, I should probably stop having granny smith apples, because they make my teeth ache like to die.
psalm_onethirtyone: (Lock the Doors and Call me Yours)
I swear I have cleaned the kitchen at least six times since Maria's friends came to visit. What is it about teenage girls that makes them so awfully messy?

Worked at the church yard sale to-day, very tedious, but I got some nice tins and an Emu Crossing sign for Maria, so that worked out. I need to bake cake for Maria's graduation party--I got her present and card and everything's wrapped, it's not until next weekend, so that's all right. Mostly my life is fairly mundane, although I saved the lives of three poults last week--the other three were crushed to death by their mama. The survivors are named Porthos, Athos, and Aramis, but we won't be able to tell them apart soon.

Quaker got a puncture wound in his shoulder that is over eight inches deep, and we have no idea how, so that's pretty exciting, and by exciting I mean terrible.

Maria was given a bible for her graduation by our priest, which is frustrating because we have explained to the priest on numerous occasions that she is spiritual rather than religious. On the other hand, it's one of those awful "modern translations", and Leviticus and Exodus turn out to be even funnier rendered into faux-modernity. That goes double for the psalms and proverbs.

And I'm fat and I sleep a lot, but I also clean a lot and take care of my fish and the kitten (whose name has gone back to Kirk, Maria MAKE UP YOUR MIND) and make cards and things like that, and I'll get a job when I go back to school if I can, and we're going to Tennessee and I'll visit [livejournal.com profile] mhari, so I guess things are worth it in their own way. Still haven't got an appt. with the psych, still very tired. But life goes on because it has to.
psalm_onethirtyone: (Gold-Sun Glory in the Wind)
Hiro is going to be the DEATH OF ME AGH. He keeps trying to climb up my bare legs so he can get cuddles; I've been wearing trousers to-day in self-defence. I can't wait until Ando comes home and he has somebody to play with. He's doing really well! He just really hasn't figured out the whole 'retractable claws' thing and he loves to get into my lap.

Maria and I are taking the Quaker out for a drive to-day, which should be fun--he keeps trying to kill us when we drive with him (two weeks ago he shied at a stop sign and cantered halfway down the wrong side of the road before Maria could get him under control, and I clutched her thigh until my hand hurt but didn't scream, and she told me she was really proud of me for it) (last week he shied at a puddle, he is useless you giez). So that should be nice.

I need to finish my preparations for Maria's graduation party. Yesterday I cleaned the house, which always makes Maggie hate me--she always runs from the place I'm vacuuming to the place I'm about to vacuum, so I chase her around the house essentially and she is not thrilled by that. I bought Maria's cup and I need to go to the store and print out a photo of her so I can draw a helix across her face and leave it on her pillow. Uh. Not that we have a strange sense of humour or anything. Or that we spend hours sometimes reimagining Gunsmoke as Star Trek ("He's dead, Matt. Dammit, I'm a doctor, not a marshal." "Beam us up, Kitty." &c).

We've been doing a lot of planting lately, and I still haven't repotted Mohindar, which I really need to do because he hates his little plastic pot. He gets all cringy and sad in it. On the plus side, the fishies are doing well, and Levin is huge--nearly eight inches long. I'm so proud of him.

We're trying to name the hen with the bad foot--can anybody think of any good (funny or fandomy) names for a lady with crinkled toes? Black Peter has become unrecognisable, but Nellie is getting more playful, and I can't wait for them to go down with the rest of the flock in the long bottom. We have Redjac and Dora and Fidel and Jol down there, as well as two buff hens, another Aracauna, and another Marron.

The weather is finally nice enough to start hanging laundry on the line again! I think we're all glad of this.
psalm_onethirtyone: (Gold-Sun Glory in the Wind)
[The scene: a small farm in central Pennsylvania. Two young women, Soujin and Maria, are standing by the hog pen, having successfully wrestled two large screaming hogs from their pasture in the vegetable garden to the hoghouse two-hundred yards away. Maria is pumping water from the hand pump onto Soujin's head.]

Soujin: Man, having water pumped onto your head like this always makes me kind of feel like a big goddamn super hero.
Maria: [laughs] Which superhero?
Soujin: Uh. Captain Kirk, actually.
Maria: [laughs harder] Captain Kirk?
Soujin: Why, which superhero do you feel like?
Maria: Iron Man.
Soujin: You realise that that is actually even less logical than Captain Kirk, right?
Maria: SO HOW ABOUT THAT HOT CORVETTE IN THE NEW TREK FILM?

[Laughing, the two women go to rip iron fencing out of the ground, their large manly muscles gleaming with sweat. Soujin's short red hair* is attractively tousled, not unlike that of the famous James Tiberius Kirk. Maria appears to have grown a small moustache and goatee.]

[The End]

*I dyed it again! :D :D :D
psalm_onethirtyone: (Times of Woe)
So my life just got a lot more complicated.

I called my parents yesterday to tell them my internship start date, but I got Maria, and I told her instead. I called back to-day to let Mama know, and she told me Maria cried all night because she would only get to see me for a day before I left again for two months.

And then she told me Maria's cat Jiji, who we've had since Maria was eight, got hit on the road. And two of Maria's poults were crushed by their mother. And all her melon seeds failed to germinate. And her best friends just called and said they can't come for her birthday.

So I am trying to get my exam schedule rearranged so I can come home on Saturday afternoon instead of Monday, thereby spending four days with her instead of one, but that means that 1) I am running around like a lunatic trying to coerce my professors into agreeing with this change of plans, and 2) I HAVE THREE EXAMS TO STUDY FOR BY TO-MORROW SHIT.

I will spend to-night working on my religion and sociology study guides, and doing o.chem practise exams. And maybe I will not kill myself, and maybe I will. Agh, my poor baby. I need to make this work.
psalm_onethirtyone: (Our Lesson)
I really do not like April.

I'm not angry any more, but now I'm weepy and anxious and depressed; I keep cycling around from feeling sort of okay again to feeling awful, and bursting into tears for no apparent reason; and I had several meetings/talks with professors to-day and came away from all of them feeling like an idiot and wishing I hadn't said anything. I probably wasn't an idiot, but I feel like everything I said was stupid or pretentious or made me sound like I thought I was better than other students, and I don't (I told Dr. Reingold about how some of the other folks in my sosh class started the twelve-page research paper the day before it was due, and how I just can't do that because I get too stressed out, so I'd done mine about three weeks earlier, and then I realised that made me sound like I was saying I was better because I got my work done early, and that's not how I meant to sound).

Serena and I had dinner together on the quad and we met Steph, and she was all dressed up and looked so cute--I like this warmer weather because all the girls like to go out walking in these really cute clothes and they're so pretty. And Serena invited me to Mayfest to-morrow and we are thinking maybe we'll bicycle to the Peace Chapel on Sunday, which sounds really nice.

Maria's turkeys hatched out seven poults but three are dead, and the pigs are growing really quick. She came up to visit on Thursday and we went to Boxer's for lunch, which was nice: I think the people who run it are very sensitive to the fact that this is a college town, because it's incredibly good food but it costs very little, and we were able to eat for thirteen dollars, which was wonderful. I'm all out of money for food so right now I'm sponging off people whose meal plans were more extensive than mine. Serena has a lot of meals left and doesn't mind (she says) spending them on me, and I'm grateful. She's going to come home with us after finals and spend a few days in Oriental before she goes home, because she's transferring out after this semester and going to Indiana, which is a real shame. Anyway she wanted to meet the Quaker and get to hang out with our family one last time because everybody adores her.

I have a terrible headache and a lot of homework although most of it is reading (Heart of Darkness is due on Tuesday, O God). Actually I think less homework than I have been telling myself, mostly because I am having one of the sustained anxiety attacks that last over several days and make everything terrifying and stressful. Also the other day when I was having lunch I decided to get ice cream and I passed my sociology professor and she was all "omg what an enormous bowl of ice cream you have there!" and I have been feeling fat and losery ever since. >_< So--I don't know, I'll blame it on April.

I think I need some time for myself.
psalm_onethirtyone: (Sugar Magnolia (Sweet Blossom Come On))
La la la this.

Livejournal be stealin mah paid account, which is annoying, because we are currently in a negative monied period. On the other hand, we do have a horse and spring waggon now, and that's nifty--it is coming home on Thursday with us in it, if we can beat the Quaker into submission. He is kind of dreadful. He stares at me with his creepy eye and tries to eat the buttons off my trousers. And his lips are incredibly flexible and come after you almost independent of the rest of his face and OH GOD THE HORROR etc.

One of the turkey hens is ripped up--we discovered it on Sunday and she's been moved to solitary confinement, which means she's dying. Flock birds are miserable by themselves. She sits by the wall where she can hear the others and cries. Problem is because of her side being all bloody she looks different, so the others beat her up if she's in with them.

We are working on our Operation Opossum, in which we are going lovingly to place a possum in the mailbox of our pastor, because she is evil, and because it is the funniest damn crime that has ever been reported in the Record, with the exception maybe of the time somebody smeared a green bell pepper all over someone's car, what the HELL, Perry County, your idea of crime is absolutely embarrassing. And yet deeply, deeply entertaining. Maria suggests we put a tag on it that says 'Welcome to Perry County'. Daddy is completely horrified by the whole plan, but Mama laughs in a mildly encouraging manner whenever Maria brings it up, so you never know. A rash of random possum mailboxings may spring up all over Central Pennsylvania. Maybe it will inspire our pastor to write a good sermon. Maybe it will inspire her actually to GIVE the sermon, instead of letting her horrible allow-me-to-use-the-New-Testament-as-a-vehicle-for-my-Old-Testament-hellfire-and-brimstone-belief-pattern-by-the-way-everyone-is-evil-except-Christians husband do it. Who knows...!

Otherwise, random irrational depressive episodes interspersed with pretty steady mood. So overall I would say that's good.
psalm_onethirtyone: (Lovey & Me)
I am sneezing blood and nursing a headache I have had literally four days straight, and have taken enough ibuprofen to turn blood into water.

And I'm really happy. I'm looking at all the photographs my family has taken since I've been away, and I feel so sad that I am missing so much of their lives, especially Maria's--I think she'd hate that, but she's one of my favourite people in the whole world and I wish I could be there to see how gorgeous she looks when she's really happy every time she's really happy. And looking at photographs just isn't the same. But then I think that the important thing is that she's really happy, not whether I find out in the present or in the past. My bitwoded, my brave smart incredibly strong sister is happy. I'm happy too.

And I'm happy when I see the pictures of me that are mixed in from break and things. My cheeks are very rounded and when the sun hits them they get golden around the edges like a peach. I still don't love myself very much and certainly not as much as I should. I judge myself too harshly and about stupid things. When I get frustrated or upset my first thought is still to see how much damage I can physically do to myself. But I know that's wrong. People are working very hard to make sure I know that isn't right.

I'm happy reading my friendslist and seeing how pleased people are, about Christmas, about other things. At least ten people have posted saying they're just generally doing well, talking about things they're excited about and things they'll be doing and it makes me feel really good. It's extremely basic, I think: people you love are happy, you're happy. Maybe not all over, certainly not for-ever, but it feels so good to know that other folks, folks whose happiness you are deeply invested in, are happy.

My aunt told me to-day during the Christmas party that she has had episodes of bipolar since she was in college. All this time, my parents have been saying, "Where did this come from? Nobody in our two families has ever had a mental illness?" and I've been saying, "I guess I'm just the unlucky penny." And Aunt Susie told me it's run in my Daddy's family for years, people just don't talk about it. She has it, she's pretty sure my aunt has it, and she knows about several suicides in my grandpa's family tree. So it's not just me. It's not just me. This didn't just come out of nowhere because I'm weak or bad or something. It's curled up in my genetics, this little curlicue of coding.

My family didn't really do presents this year. I got a couple of leetle sheep plushies from a couple of people, and Maria gave me a new Sigg water bottle since I destroyed mine through stupidity this summer. Aunt Jeanie, who is a bronze sculptor, made me a box with a bronze sheep on the lid. I got some soft socks and a little pottery cup. Most of my gifts were more transient. My parents gave me a train ticket to [livejournal.com profile] mhari on the eighth. I got candied orange slices and some mixed nuts (I love mixed nuts so much--I like to go to the grocery when they're sitting out in massive barrels and just run my hands through them because they're all different textures, brazil nuts and hazelnuts and almonds and pecans and walnuts) and I did get a pill thingy, one of those thingies that have the day of the week in them and you put your pill in each day so you remember to take it? because I forget to take my pill a lot, it's a problem I have. And Will, who is taking pottery in school right now, said he wants to make me a bowl. But he isn't finished yet. <3 He is growing up so handsome. Anyway, I only got presents from my mama and daddy and Maria, and then Will and Johanna's family, but I got so many nice things that I really wanted. And I think that's really nice--I mostly just got things I really wanted. Serena, my friend from college, donated a sheep to Heifer Project in my name, which may be the very best thing I got all over.

People give to me so much. This is a warm season, I think: it is very cold, but it is very warm. While we were watching Grey's Anatomy this evening, Johanna and Maria and I squished together on the couch, and Johanna held my hand through the episode. Her hands are at least three shades darker than mine, and freckled, these incredibly beautiful hands, and extraordinarily warm. So that was beautiful.

And Mama loved the vase I got her, which I think is nicest. Juniata has a pottery club called Mud Junkies and I bought a green vase with a glaze that looks like ice blossoming, or dandelion tufts if you draw them in pen and ink, and she told me it was beautiful.

So I guess the point is I think all that eclipses the fact that I am still sick, and still fat, and extremely tired. I'm not what matters. What matters is that everyone around me is full of love and warmth and beauty, and I love them so much. I love all of them so much.

And I'm happy.
psalm_onethirtyone: (Therefore Be Free)
I got tagged by [livejournal.com profile] nowgoesquickly to write for eight days about good things. So, um, I'm working on that.

To-day I couldn't get out of bed until five; I was too sick. But when I did get up Daddy made me chicken broth (from our own chickens) with orzo in it, and Maria told me she wanted me to go with her to get milk. So we drove together to the Beidler place and when we went to go into the milk barn a big dark furry shape brushed up against the door and slammed it shut. We both jumped back.

"Was that a cow?" I asked.

"Yeah!" Maria said.

But Mr. Beidler shoved his way out a minute later and we gave him our milk jars. They're big like for three or four gallons and have spigots on them: you turn the spigots and the milk comes out. They're low down at the bottom so the cream can be skimmed off. And he filled our milk jars for us and we carried them out to the car through the ice, and when we got home I fed the cats, who are as round and soft as heavyweight bowling balls with a fur coating, and Maria climbed up on the truck to cover the windshield with feed bags. Then we shooed the turkeys up into their house. They're so big it's just crazy, and I was stroking one, and I asked Maria where the guineas went at night.

"They're in here too," she said.

"Really?"

"Yeah, just a sec--" And she went in and got one for me and they are just the warmest thing. "I love these guys. Protected by the ghost of Snapper."

Snapper is Paul's father. He's sort of like the Chuck Norris of Oriental--if Snapper couldn't do it, it couldn't be done. He even got a road named after him, which out here is just as good as getting a town. It's epic. And when he died, he died of an aneurysm in the corn crib, and they had to get a backhoe to get him out, because the corncrib is deep and they had to lower a man down in there to lift him onto the backhoe and then use that to get both men out. We built the range shelter where the corncrib used to be, so Maria and I say that Snapper is looking out for our birds now.

When we started down the hill we could see the moon shining off this big patch of ice in the pasture near the road, so we ran down and skated around on it for a while in our farm boots, sliding back and forth in the cold. And nearly fell over a couple of times.

Then we came in and put the milk away.

That was good.

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January 2012

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