Posted in Hey look! I'm blogging!

Spring Awakening

I’ve never actually seen the musical or read the play, so if you’re here looking for a review on either, I’m sorry to tell you you won’t find that here.

I do, however, feel like I’m coming up for air after pretty much being asleep this winter.

I loathe small talk, but I’m too polite to turn it away. I always try to respond when people ask me the banal, “How’s work?” “What have you been up to?” “Anything new going on?” “How are your parents?” Blah blah blah…  It’s most likely a part of my introverted nature, but every time I am asked one of these questions, I cringe internally.

But you know what? There are a lot of new things going on. In October, my dear 12-year-old doggie made his trip to the Rainbow Bridge. In January, we got a new dog. I also got a new job, and, after about a month of having to carry a fire extinguisher in the passenger seat for fear of my car spontaneously catching on fire, I got a new car.

All this newness came with relatively no pomp or circumstance; just exhaustion and disbelief. I haven’t really given myself to let it sink in that this is my life now.

Now that it is spring, perhaps I can snap out of the sleep I’ve been in last season. I want to do some significant spring cleaning, do more crafting, create and follow through with a vision board for the year, finally start reading and writing again.

And start this blog back up to maybe document it all.

So!

To Starting Fresh (and all the caffeine with which to accomplish it!),

Violet

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Posted in Hey look! I'm blogging!, Scholastic Saturdays

Scholastic Saturday: 100th Post Retrospective–What I Learned From Being a Blogger

I can’t believe this is my 100th post!  It has been such a fun ride so far, and I hope to continue with hundreds more posts.  To celebrate this milestone, I’ve decided to share what things I’ve learned (mostly about myself) from being a blogger.

*I feel extremely accomplished when I’m able to do a full week of daily posts.
*While I do enjoy people paying any attention whatsoever to my blog, I see it as an extra-special treat to get comments instead of likes.
*Sometimes the best posts come about from stream-of-consciousness writing.
*I don’t have to take myself too horribly seriously.  Blogging is supposed to be a hobby, not a job.
*Short posts are just as good as long posts, much like short-yet-language-rich poems are just as good as marathon Russian novels.
*It’s good to set goals for your blog, if not for anything else but to say you’ve accomplished something.
*I absolutely love participating in what I call “community posts” (honestly, I don’t know what the technical blogosphere term for it is…link ups, I think?), such as Friend Makin’ Mondays, where the blogging community gets together and either answers the same questions, or when there is a fashion theme to complete and show off, or writes to the same prompt (there are most likely others, but these are the ones I’ve come across most often).  It’s a chance to get outside of your own head for awhile and see other bloggers’ personalities and there’s just something so great about that.

Okay, so…you didn’t think I’d make it out of this post without another checklist, did you?  😉

Also to commemorate my 100th post, I’m going to make a list of other “100s” I want to complete before my 200th post (I’ll work this into my blog days somehow…perhaps on Scholastic Saturdays):

__ Have a total of 100 comments (right now I have 64).
__ Have 100 new people read my blog (this is different from having 100 followers, which may be too lofty a goal for me at this moment).
__ Consistently burn at least 100 calories with my workouts (right now I’m sitting at about 50 calories per workout, but I want to work my way up).
__  Write 100 pages of a story.
__ Have worked 100 hours in a new job (I almost want to say 100 days, but again, maybe too lofty?  We’ll see).
__  Legitimately earn a total of 100 more checkmarks ((this can be a total of picture checkmarks, writing project checkmarks, bucket list checkmarks, goal checkmarks, and clothing checkmarks).

I’m sure I’ll think of much more as time goes by, and I’ll add to this list, but for right now, a full day awaits me.  🙂

What about you bloggers out there?  What have you learned from being a blogger, and do you have any goals for your blog for the months ahead?  What has been the easiest thing about blogging so far?  What about the hardest?  I’d love to hear all about it in the comments below.  🙂

Wishing You (at least) 100 Things to Be Grateful For,
Violet

Posted in Hey look! I'm blogging!, Spiritual Sundays

Violet’s Back from Hiatus Spiritual Sunday Post: “Good Christian Boys”

Hi Readers!
I’m finally back!  I’m sorry it has been such a long time since I’ve written a post.  As people say, life got in the way.  If I may indulge in some personal stuff…
As you guys know, I’ve been house-hunting/doing house stuff since about June.  I’m happy to say that we closed on the house and I am now currently typing in a house that hubby and I own!  It is so strange and wonderful and overwhelming all at the same time.  I love it here and have already found my “zen spot”:  a La-Z-Boy setup by the fireplace, with a cute little end table that I got from an antiques store.  I relax there with a cup of tea or coffee and a good book and take in the garden view from my bay window.  Or I look up at the vaulted ceilings or at purple-framed, calligraphied quote from The Velveteen Rabbit hanging on the other side of the fireplace.  It is a lovely place that I can claim for myself.  Picture to come soon, I’m sure.  🙂
Anyhow, we still haven’t completely moved in yet, so it has still been hustly and bustly in my life.  So, on with the topic of this post, shall we?  😉  Oh, but first, the obligatory disclosure that I recommend you read before any Spiritual Sunday post.  Read it?  Okay, moving on:
I met our next-door neighbor who seemed nice enough, albeit a touch pompous.  She told us a bit about herself and her two sons, which she was quick to describe by saying, “They’re good Christian boys.”
Which brings me to today’s post.  If I’m to be honest, I have to say my initial reaction to this statement was an inward cringing.  But I nodded and smiled politely and let her go about introducing herself.
I have to begin by saying that I do define myself as a Christian (actually, a rebel Catholic to be exact), so by no means was the mention of Christianity my reason for inwardly cringing.  At the same time, as I’ve mentioned before, I’m respectful of all beliefs/non-beliefs and have friends from all walks of life.  And my friends are wonderful, every single one of them.
When she asked me this question, a plethora of questions ran through my mind:  Is she expecting me to say that I’m a good Christian girl?  Has she been watching one too many episodes of GCB?  Is she from the south?  Do only people from the south refer to themselves as “Good Christian so-and-sos”?  What kind of impression is she trying to give me by saying her sons are Good Christian Boys?  That they’re innocent?  That they’re pious?  That they’ve had good upbringing and won’t hurt anyone?  That they can play a mean game of biblical Trivial Pursuit?  That they’ve been praying for us ever since we’ve moved in because we look like sinful people?  I mean, really.  What the heck does she mean by saying that?
Was she trying to subtly hint that she won’t put up with devilish shenanigans from us?  Or that she won’t tolerate it if take the Lord’s name in vain in front of her sons (who, by the way, are in their 20s, so it’s not like they’re young ones)?  Or maybe that they’re good, Christlike neighbors who are loving and who help out in times of need?  I’m really hoping she meant that last one.
At the same time, other questions ran through my mind:  Does anyone ever introduce themself as a Good Jewish Woman, or Nice Atheist Man, or Snazzy Buddhist Girl (okay, maybe not that one)?  And how would this mother of two Good Christian Boys feel if I introduced myself in kind as a Good Muslim Woman or a Loving Lesbian Woman with a Caring Wife (obviously, by my abovementioned comments–I have a hubby and define myself as Christian–I’m neither)?  I feel as though both of those labels are on equal ground and just as defining as being a Good Christian Boy, though they may also garner some initial inward cringes.
I respect the fact that she is proud of bringing up her boys in the Christian faith and I am glad that she’s so comfortable being straightforward about it.  But at the same time I truly hope that the respect is mutual and that she can also respect my own faith, the faith of any of the friends who will visit my house, the faith of my husband, and the faith of humanity as a whole.  Because humanity is a beautifully diverse thing, and not everyone’s going to believe what she believes.  And I hope she can not only accept that, but also embrace that.
My head still can’t wrap my head completely around this revelation, but those are my thoughts for now.
What do you guys think about all this?  I would love to hear your thoughts in the comments section below!  🙂
****Also, sneak peek for tomorrow:  I got to check off something on my “Things to Do Before I Die” list!  I’m so excited to tell you all about it!!!!!

To Being a Good Representation of Humanity, Regardless of What You Do or Don’t Believe,

Posted in Fashion Fridays, Hey look! I'm blogging!

Fashion Friday: An Announcement

Dear Readers,

I’ve been on a pretty good roll keeping my posts short and sweet (at least my version of short and sweet, which means 500-page novel vs. trilogy), so this one will be no different.  I won’t have time to do my (long-awaited) dress inventory.  That’s because I’m taking a cue from yesterday’s post and getting away from technology for the weekend.  Except for my digital camera…baby steps, I guess.  😉  I’m going to go out camping with friends, hang out by the water, go hiking, possibly play board games at the campsite.  And before you say, “perfect time to steal her stuff!”, 1)  You don’t know where I live (most of you, anyway) and 2) there will be a housesitter who will rip your eyes out should you try.

Ahem.  Where was I?

Oh yes.  Announcement.  So after a few gentle suggestions from a friend to start a fashion blog, I decided I’m going to jump in and do it.  My new fashion blog, Celebrity Fashion Fiction, will be up and running on Tuesday, August 1st!  You can catch a very quick preview here.  For the most part, this is going to be a fun, no-nonsense, light-hearted blog.  Basically, my guilty pleasure blog.  Don’t worry, I’ll continue to do my listing and loving and laughing right here.  After all, this is my original!  😀

Can’t wait for you guys to see it.  Until then, hope you all have a great weekend!  (And try the non-technology thing!  I wasn’t kidding about that!)

Posted in Hey look! I'm blogging!

Tying Up Loose Ends

Maintain Blog
Since we are coming up on the end of spring, I thought it would be appropriate to do a little bit of blog spring cleaning of sorts.  These are updates, pictures I’ve been meaning to post, and various other miscellany.  Enjoy!  🙂

1) Since posting my first two Fashion Friday posts, I’ve acquired some clothing to fill in the gaps that I had.  I’ll also update the actual posts, but I’ve had several requests to actually see the clothing on me because they’re curious about my style, especially after my posts on my DIY yellow shoes and shirt-to-skirt.  So I put together some outfits with my new additions.  Much fun was had!  😀  Here are the results:

T-shirts:

2 more tees in unpredictable colors (preferably navy blue & yellow)

Navy blue t-shirt: Mossimo (bought at Target in 2012).  Khaki shorts:  Eddie Bauer (gifted).
Belt & feather necklace: ???
(gifted).
*Author’s Note:  Coincidentally, I got my hair cut a couple weeks ago, and this is the first
official picture that I have of it.  Mostly because this is the very first day that I didn’t loathe
the way my hair looked.  🙂

Yellow t-shirt:  Merona (bought at Target in 2012).  Jeans:  Avenue (bought 2012).
Earrings: Target (bought 2012).  Scarf:  ??? (gifted).  Owl pin: handmade by Sequins–check out her & her friend’s awesome fashion blog!!  🙂 
 (gifted).
1 cream or white long-sleeved tee

White long-sleeved t-shirt:  Herman Geist (thrifted).  Dark purple pinstriped skirt (part of a skirt suit): J.B.S. Limited (thrifted).
Gray fedora: Charming Charlie (on loan indefinitely 🙂  )  Gray belt (shown here tied around neck as a necklace):  ??? (gifted).
*Author’s note:  I had fun putting together the styling on this one.  I know the typical, classic styling of a white
tee is with jeans and perhaps a scarf, but I wanted to show the versatility of this classic piece, so I pushed my
fashion boundaries a bit.  I love the result!

 
Skirts:
1 all-season work skirt

Gray & black colorblocked skirt: H&M (thrifted!  score!!!).  Black sweater: Charter Club (thrifted).
Earrings: ??? (gifted).  Necklace (shown here tied around waist as a belt): ??? (gifted).  Cream flower pin/clip: booth from an expo (bought 2012).

2)  Confession time:  Even though my Memorial Day experience was indeed memorable and I said it was enough to not make me worry about the fact that I didn’t finish my May pictures to take list, my strong dislike for leaving things unfinished took over.  So here are the missing pictures from the list, no longer missing.  😀

BBQs

From the pool-opening party at our complex.
Prom happenings
I was unable to actually take a picture of prom happenings since a) I am no longer prom-going age and b) I don’t have a child who is prom-going age.  There were some missed opportunities as hubby and I were driving around these last two weekends, but alas, I forgot to bring my camera.  (One highlight I especially regret missing:  dressed up teens getting into a white with black flames Hummer limousine.  White with black flames!!  Epic, I’m telling you.  Epic.)
So instead, here is the picture I have for you:

Violet’s Senior Prom, 2000.  I thought the gloves were tres elegant, and I custom-made
the shoes by hot-gluing red roses onto them to match the rose pins in my hair (both of
which are hard to see in this picture).  Um, Senior Prom was awful.  But that’s another story
for another time.
Cinco de Mayo celebrations
As noted, my Cinco de Mayo celebration was…interesting, to say the least.  If you didn’t read that particular post, the Reader’s Digest version is that we ended
up celebrating it with a Taco Bell Doritos locos taco by the lake.  Here is the picture I promised:

“Derby de Mayo”, 5/5/2012.
Students moving out of the college dorm
I’d like to go on record to say I don’t just randomly stalk college dorm rooms to see if I could snap a picture of a complete stranger coming out of their dorm rooms.  🙂  That said, here is the last picture I took of the view of the very last dorm room I stayed in my final year of college, right before I locked it up and drove away:

As an added bonus for you, Dear Readers, is a snapshot of the rarely-seen Pointerfingerness Monster.  😉
But seriously…that’s what gives this picture so much charm for me.

People drinking mint juleps or wearing hats for Derby Day
Again, you need to reference the “Derby de Mayo” post to fully understand this picture, but basically we didn’t have mint juleps.

Pie shake combining sour cream lemon pie and vanilla ice cream.  Yummy!

Fabulous Derby hats:

These are pictures from the TV when we watched the Kentucky Derby.  I love the blue hats!  They’re fabulous!

The actual hat I wore on Derby de Mayo (forgot to take a picture of me wearing it); late Derby hat donning with a friend while at the mall (substituted coffee for mint julep).

I know your minds probably have some great comments developing, but just in the off chance that you don’t, here are some questions:

Which of the above outfits is your favorite on me?  Any styling tips?  Any fun Derby de Mayo (and subsequent Super Moon) stories of your own that you’d like to share?  Any stories of tying up your own loose ends?  How was your senior prom?  Tried any new fabulous drinks lately?  What’s your favorite BBQ food item?  Any great moving out of college stories?  I’m all ears!  😀