Friday, August 31, 2007

Basking in the neat

Last night I moved the last of the extra furniture that had been crammed into my living room since November, out. I was going to take a picture of it and brag a little, but discovered my digital camera is not working. I was hugely disappointed about that because I was also planning to take a picture of my husband’s shaved head and blog about that too.

So today, you get nothing because I’m too busy sitting in my living room, basking in all the neatness.

Now playing on my iPod: Come On Get Happy by the Partridge Family

Thursday, August 30, 2007

Rotting Bananas


I only like bananas at a certain level of ripeness. If they're starting to speckle, I don't want them. These two bananas started to speckle last Friday.

I knew they were going bad. I'd glance at them as I walked through the kitchen multiple times a day; see them hanging on my white plastic banana tree. "I need to throw those out," I'd tell myself.

But I was in a hurry. Too busy with work and life to take care of a matter so small as spotted bananas.

This morning when I entered my kitchen, I walked smack dab into the middle of a swarm of fruit flies. (You knew this was coming, didn't you?)

The flies were everywhere. And the bananas had leaked a very dark brown sticky goo all over my counter. It had run under the telephone and behind a few knick-knacks I keep there. Ugh.

When the rotting bananas began to interfere with the rest of my life, I finally took action. But by then, it wasn't an easy clean-up. It wasn't just a matter of tossing them in the trash. There were flies. And goo. Did I say the goo was sticky? Like molasses! It took 10 minutes of scrubbing to get the goo up, and then I had to hit it with the Soft Scrub (with bleach) to get rid of the brown stain. The stain is still not quite gone. You can see it if you know where to look.

How many times in our lives do we let the bananas go bad, brushing aside those little nagging thoughts—to do something, change something, help someone—until it escalates to a crisis? Sometimes we get lucky and can make the mess and the stain disappear with determination and elbow grease. Sometimes, by the time we finally notice, it's too late to make it all better and we're stuck with permanent reminders of our failure to pay attention.

So I ask myself--and you, too--what are my personal, spiritual and emotional "bananas"? Am I ready to pay attention? Or am I going to wait, again, until the fruit flies gather?

Now Playing on my iPod: I Know That My Redeemer Lives

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Prize Winners!

Candace Salima won a copy of Sorry, the Stork Takes No Returns by Claire Bowen.

Marcia Mickelson won a copy of Loving Firmness by Corrie Lynne Player.



Send me your mailing address and I'll get those right off to you.

I have quite a few more books for our totally random Summer Reading Thing prize give-aways. Each give-away will be open for 24 hours only, so make sure you check back often.

Monday, August 27, 2007

Summer Reading Thing Prizes!

Between my old Mac being put out of its misery by the computer angel of death, my new Mac having a logic board failure (don't ask me what that is, but your computer won't even turn on without it), school starting, and several trips to the doctor--I've been busy! But I have a working Mac now, school's in its second week and I'm all better, so all is right with my world.

That means...time for a contest!


I'm giving away two books this time.


Sorry, the Stork Takes No Returns by Claire Bowen
A Bombeck-ish collection of humorous stories revolving around family life.
"Welcome to the slightly off–kilter world of Claire Bowen and family. A world someone once called “gently insane.” Or perhaps he said the Bowen world was ordinary and the people were insane. In any case, he’s no longer invited to dinner. But draw your own conclusions. From adventures with Scouting and Girls Camp, to self–service tooth fairies, to reflections on becoming a grandmother, Claire’s unique sense of humor will leave you laughing. And whatever else this book does, it makes you feel better about raising your own kids. It’s humor with a literary sense and humor with common sense. It’s humor with teenagers! What more could you ask? You’re likely to recognize your own family, because you know they’re nuts, too; and you’re sure to be comforted, because they’re not as nutty as some we could name. You’ll come away feeling you’ve made new, albeit somewhat unstable, friends."


AND


Loving Firmness by Corrie Lynne Player, M.Ed.

Loving Firmness teaches a no-nonsense, tough-love approach to raising teenagers, balanced with deep affection and a soft touch they will respect and follow. Written with wit and a profound understanding of the teenage brain, this how-to manual will help ensure your children grow up to be responsible and successful adults.

This is the fourth book from parenting expert Corrie Lynne Player She is an author, educator, and lecturer with a masters degree in education from Stanford. Besides nine children of her own, she has mothered over forty other troubled foster children. She has been a contributor to Family Circle, Parents, McCall's, Ladies Home Journal, and Woman's Day, and is a parenting expert for the ClubMom web site.


Eligibility:

1. Must be signed up for the Summer Reading Thing 2007. (If you're not, sign up now.)

2. Must leave a comment on THIS POST in the next 24 hours. (Before Aug. 28th, 1:45 P.M.)

Friday, August 24, 2007

The Counterfeit by Robison Wells

The Counterfeit by Robison Wells (formerly known as Robison E. Wells) is the sequel to Wake Me When It's Over.

We pick up where the last book left off:

Conspiracy rumor holds that the world economy is tightly controlled by a group of economic terrorists. Eric Hopkins is about to find out just how true that myth is--and how close it stands to him.

Eric and his girlfriend Rebekah believe they are safely hiding under the witness protection program. But when a bomb explodes, nearly killing them, they must rely on themselves to find out who has infiltrated the FBI. Their shocking conclusion leads them on a dangerous chase. Eric and Rebekah are battling the powers behind a financial conspiracy that has lasted hundreds of years--and may only end with the destruction of mankind. Nearly out of time, their pursuit of the truth sweeps them to a centuries-old English estate, and then plummets them into the dark catacombs of Paris. It's now up to the unprepared duo to unravel the clues that could save the world from a catastrophic war. However, as they take action, they must ask themselves if the end can ever justify the devastating means they are considering.

I enjoyed the first book. I liked this one better. Although this book still has more technical errors than I like to see, Wells' writing is getting better and the story is more solid. Still hilariously funny and clueless, Eric's thoughts and behaviors had me laughing in many places.

I recommend both these books as light suspense (although there is some guts and blood and an "on-screen" death in this one) with some romance thrown in just for fun.

Rating: 3.5.....................BUY NOW

Tuesday, August 21, 2007

I love ruining people's lives...

I forced my sister to sign up for the Summer Reading Thing. I mean, that's what sisters are for, right?

She read Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, then Twilight. I got her New Moonfor her birthday two weeks ago. So she's been reading like a maniac for the past month and calling and/or e-mailing me almost daily trying to get me to slip up and tell her what's going to happen. So far, she's only tripped me up once.

Anyway, got an e-mail from her this morning:
I am so neglecting my kids. I read late into the night Saturday and read a lot on Sunday and read last night. I had to finally stop. I hope to finish tonight.

I am obsessed with this book [New Moon]. I have never read a book that fast in my life. Remember when you told me that when you read you don't notice the words, that it turns into a movie for you? This is what this book is like for me. I'm not sure that it has ever been like that for me before. Sure, I imagine but it doesn't flow like a movie.

I can't believe what you have done to me. I have to go to the third book tonight--or maybe I should wait a week so I don't neglect my kids this weekend. But I'm not sure I can wait.

So--are you done with Eclipse? [Yes.] Did you like it? [Yes.]
You're welcome.



And speaking of the Summer Reading Thing. I promised lots of prizes and I have them; I really do. It's just with all the computer problems lately, I haven't had regular blog/internet access. But as soon as I get my computer back, I promise to do a bunch of prizes. Remember, when I post a prize alert, you'll have a limited amount of time to comment on the post to be eligible for the prize. I'm thinking 24 hours...

Have I mentioned how much I hate electronics?

If you'll recall, my Mac laptop died last month. It was really, really sad. I cried. A lot.

But then I got a new one--the one on the left.


I had ambivalent feelings at first, but it really is a lot nicer and faster than my old one. And I was so much more productive--which is a good thing because the whole fiasco put me about 10 days off schedule on some books. My clients were not happy.

So, guess where my new laptop is right now at this very moment? Yep...


Do I need to say I cried again?

They think it's the power source. If they can diagnose it today, and order the new part by 3:00 p.m., it should be here tomorrow morning and I can probably pick it up before they close tomorrow. (Notice all those qualifiers?)

Of course, it's covered by warranty so all it's going to cost me is my time. But right now, time is in short demand. I have 6 books that need to be finished in four weeks. One of them should have gone to press today--files are on the Mac. Another is due tomorrow. Files are on the Mac. Two more books are due next Wednesday, neither of which I have started yet because, yep, files are on the Mac.

Working as a greeter at Wal-Mart is looking better and better.

Now playing on my iPod: I'm afraid to touch it because it might blow up too.

P.S. Before anyone leaves a smart-aleck comment about Macs (cough-dad-cough!), let me just say that I've been using Macs since 1991 and I've never, ever had this much trouble before. When they work, Macs work flawlessly, as opposed to PCs which crash and burn every time you sneeze in their general direction.

Wednesday, August 15, 2007

Wake Me When It's Over by Robison Wells

I've been meaning to read Robison Wells' book, Wake Me When It's Over, for a long time now. I think it's been sitting on my shelf for over a year. Don't know why.

While on his mission, Elder Eric Hopkins finds an attache case containing a necklace and a ring. Finders, keepers, he brings them home with him.

While attending BYU, Eric meets Rebekah Hughes, gifted violinist, and it's a crush at first sight—for him, anyway. He asks her out on a bet and they become friends. When she tells him she has a Christmas gift for him, he scrambles to find one for her and gives her the necklace he found on his mission.

She's wearing this necklace during a nationally televised Christmas concert. At the end of the concert, Rebekah is kidnapped. Eric is seriously hurt trying to rescue her. Over the next few days, Eric and Rebekah escape, are re-kidnapped, and escape again as they try to figure out why the thugs want them, what it has to do with her necklace, and how her father is involved.


This book has a few technical errors in grammar and structure, but I really liked it. It's hilariously funny in places and I loved reading a "romance" from the guys point of view. Eric is so hopelessly clueless when it comes to girls that I laughed out loud in a few places.

Looking forward to reading it's sequel: The Counterfeit.

Rating: 3....................BUY NOW

Tuesday, August 14, 2007

[Sigh of relief]

I'd like to proudly announce that this is what my newly cleaned and organized garage looks like:

I'd like to say that, but dang it, I can't. At the moment, it's still pretty cluttered with yard sale leftovers. I put up a couple of tables and displays out on the driveway, but kept most of it inside the garage on tables and shelving so that people would be able to browse in comfort despite the 2,000 degree temperature we were having on Saturday. I still need to box and bag the unsold items and call D.I. to come for a pick up. (It's a truck-full; they'll make a special trip.) I'm hoping to get to that this Saturday, but I've got two books I have to finish this week and the LDSBA convention, so...we'll see.

Overall, the sale was okay. If I had done all that work simply to make money from the yard sale, I would have been disappointed. It took a total of 61 hours, and I made well below minimum wage. However, the yard sale was simply an afterthought. I did all that work to clean out my garage, so that I will now have room to clean out my house, so that then I will have room to work and write and create and BREATHE. That is priceless and well worth the effort even if I hadn't made a dime.

For those of you who are thinking about doing a yard sale, here are some observations.

Things I Would Do Differently:
  1. Decide to have the sale early enough that you can get an ad in the local paper. All my traffic came from five little signs on street corners. I got quite a bit, but could have probably had twice that if I'd been in the paper.
  2. All the clothes were in boxes, requiring people to dig through them. As you can imagine, they didn't. I sold very little clothing--which is too bad because a lot of it was in really good condition, brand names, jeans, sweaters, women's suits, etc. Good stuff, but there is just no easy way to display clothing in your front yard.
  3. I had five tables, three large shelving units, two bookcases. That was not nearly enough room to display everything.
  4. I tagged almost everything; took a couple of hours to do that and I got several paper cuts. The tags didn't seem to make a difference. Everyone still asked me how much something was when the neon sticker was right there glaring at them. I'm wondering if I wouldn't have done just as well if I'd just put out a sign that said "Make me an offer."

Things I Did Well:
  1. My signs were easy to read, on neon posterboard with paint sticks for posts.
  2. I lined my front sidewalk with stuff and put a big sign that said "Everything on this sidewalk is FREE!" People would stop to look at that and then feel guilty to just take the free stuff, so they'd wander over to see my other stuff too.
  3. I tried to put like items together so people could easily find things they were interested in.
  4. I was more interested in getting rid of stuff than in making money, so I was willing to bargain.
Summation: Will I do this again? Not this year. It's like having a baby. You have to forget how hard it was before you're willing to try it again.


Now playing on my iPod: Free Ride by Edgar Winter Group

Thursday, August 09, 2007

Chaos still reigns at my house

So. This is my third twelve hour day in a row mucking out my garage. I should have gotten some "before" photos, but I didn't think about it. Here are some "middle" photos. Tried to get a panoramic view here, but they don't quite capture the chaos.







While I was cleaning, this woman came by selling organic cleaner. I was hot and sticky and tired and grumpy and the last thing I wanted to do was listen to her sales pitch. Well, no—that was the second to last thing. The last thing being buy her stuff. But I couldn't just be rude and tell her to get lost. I mean, she was hot and tired too. So I thought I'd let her stand in the shade of my garage for a few minutes, and then tell her NO. The thing is, she was a really, really good salesperson. Maybe I should have hired her for Saturday. Anyway, the product was pretty good and it's organic (she licked the pump!) and since I'm getting rid of a bunch of cleansers because they're bothering me and did I mention she was a really, really good salesperson?

So now it's even more important that all of you come to my yard sale and buy everything.

If you're planning to come to the Private Sale on Friday, I'm thinking anytime between 4:00 p.m. and 8:00 p.m. should be fine. I'll probably still be cleaning and tagging, but hopefully I'll be close enough to done that you can find what you want.

Wednesday, August 08, 2007

Tristi, Candace, et al

I can't e-mail anyone right now because I don't have my computer back yet--the one with all my e-mail addresses on it. But I should have it by tonight, so I will e-mail everyone then.

In the meantime...I've got workbooks for all ages K-6. Most are for the younger ages, but I do have a few older one. Can't remember exactly what. The set of stuff you need to teach from the Scripture Readers (the ones with all the illustrations, kind of comic book style)--both teachers manuals, and all the pictures. And gobs of crayons, markers, colored pencils, child proof scissors, rolling rulers (really cool), etc. A lot of it is brand new, unopened. (Tristi, you really have to come look at this stuff. I have enough to last you all year, plus some.)

I have gobs of office supply stuff. Three-ring binders, hanging files, and regular file folders coming out my ears. A serger. A sewing machine. Home decor. And way more fabric than I remember having.

Brand new in the box--watches, necklaces, candle holders, candles, board games, puzzles, and so much more that I can't even remember what's out there.

I'm thinking Private Sale...anyone who reads my blog and wants to come over Friday night while I'm setting up can get first dibs.

(Okay, I'm feeling like I need to justify something. I am sitting here imagining people thinking, "What is wrong with this woman that she has so much brand new unopened stuff. Does she just buy stuff and then never use it?" No. I got a lot of it gratis from businesses I used to work for.)

Yard Sale

Remember that yard sale I talked about having? Well, I think this Saturday is the day. Actually, I had given up on the idea after spending several hours and not making much progress, then having stacks of unsorted crud cluttering my family room and kitchen. Weeks passed. It was hopeless.

Then yesterday, my new computer was still at the shop getting my recovered files transferred over, and tackling my garage just seemed like the thing to do. I started around 8:00 a.m. and quit at 7:30 p.m., with only a half hour break to visit with my daughter for awhile. I have a ginormous stack of stuff to get rid of. When you look in the garage, you can barely tell I've done anything, but still. And since my computer is still in the shop today, I'm thinking I'll call it a week and just finish the garage.

So,
Yard Sale
Saturday, August 11th
7:30 a.m. to 2:00 p.m.

(or until all my stuff is gone)

Bring your friends, I'm ready to make a deal.


And even though I've referred to all my stuff as "junk" it's really not--at least, not all of it. I have a lot of home decor and accessories still in the package, never opened. (Don't ask.) I'll have the usual kitchen gadgets, lots of clothes (mostly adult, some teen), and BOOKS (some new). I also will have lots of craft items-- lots of tole wood, tole pattern books, fabric, Sunrise Designs patterns (children's clothes and home decor), etc.

And the place someone will really score is with homeschool supplies. I have boxes of workbooks (K-6) and other things that are going cheap.

I have a few pieces of furniture, not a lot. But I have a huge black wire display suitable for a convention that is worth over $300. I'm letting it go for $100. I also have some wood book display shelving, like the kind you'd see in a school library, that will go really, really cheap. (In fact, make me an offer.)

I'd really like to get rid of all of this stuff, so I'm pricing it cheap. I'm hoping I'll get around to cleaning it all up before Saturday, but it may take me till then just to sort through everything. So if it's a little dusty, it's even cheaper!

If you live anywhere near Pleasant Grove Utah and you'd like to come, shoot me an e-mail and I'll give you directions.

Monday, August 06, 2007

What do I have to show for my 47 years?

I'm 47. Many times this past year I've felt the tugs of age. This year, I've come to realize that there are not as many years in store ahead of me as there are now behind me. I've had cause to reflect over my lifetime of goals and desires, to assess how I've done, what I've accomplished.

When I dream big, there are three things I keep returning to.

I want to be a writer. Not just any writer—I want to write novels. I've wanted to be a writer since I was 11, when my friends and I wrote stories during recess. Since that time, I have had ideas for at least 50 books (mostly YA) that I think would be great. I have outlines for about 20 of them in my drawer. I've written a few pages, even a couple of scenes, for some. But mostly, they sit in my drawer, waiting.

When I can't sleep, I design businesses. I have a dream to someday own a huge conglomerate of interconnected companies and to hire people I know and trust for a decent wage; to hire single or divorced mothers and pay them a salary they could actually live on; to fund ideas and projects and other businesses for people who have great ideas, but no financing. I have business plans and flow charts and job descriptions and mission statements for over a dozen different companies—all committed to making a difference in the world and blessing the lives of as many people as possible. Those business plans sit in my drawer beside my unwritten novels.

I also design houses. I don't want to own my house, I want a house of my own. One that is ergonomically designed to fit my lifestyle and my personality. One with enough space inside to breathe and create, and a yard filled with beautiful growing things that soothe my soul. I have as many house plans as I have business plans. They, too, sit in my drawer. Waiting.

Sometimes I look at my life of unfulfilled dreams and my drawer of unrealized plans, and I wonder what happened. Why haven't I accomplished any of these dreams that fill my heart nearly to bursting with desire? Why are they still as far from my reach as they were the day they first began to sprout in my mind? Where have my 47 years gone?

I was feeling the melancholy of these thoughts at church yesterday as I was reviewing the notes in my steno pad instead of listening to the lesson. I flipped though the 10 pages of new ideas, the six business plans, the two house plans and the book idea that had consumed my Saturday. All good. All solid. All possible. And yet, I couldn't help but wonder if I would ever actualize those plans, or if they'd end up in the drawer with all the others.

Again, I asked myself, where have my 47 years gone?

As I pondered that question, the teacher of the class recited this poetic stanza by Anne Campbell:
You are the trip I did not take;
You are the pearls I cannot buy;
You are my blue Italian lake;
You are my piece of foreign sky.

("To My Child," quoted in Charles L. Wallis, ed., The Treasure Chest [1965], 54.)

That is what I did instead.

I raised my children. And I can say to them with a perfectly congruent and peaceful heart:
You are the book I did not write;
You are the business I did not start;
You are my home that's filled with love;
You are the peace within my heart.

It wasn't quite fair, trading in my hopes and dreams for my four children. No, not fair at all.

I ended up with the much better end of the deal.

Friday, August 03, 2007

99% of the people who visit my blog will immediately want to take this test

You Should Be a Science Fiction Writer

Your ideas are very strange, and people often wonder what planet you're from.
And while you may have some problems being "normal," you'll have no problems writing sci-fi.
Whether it's epic films, important novels, or vivid comics...
Your own little universe could leave an important mark on the world!

Thursday, August 02, 2007

Harry Potter & the Deathly Hallows by J. K. Rowling

Like it or hate it, Harry Potter is part of our cultural identity. I would guess that J.K. Rowling has added more new words to our collective lexicon than any other single individual. She is certainly the only author I know of who has created a 7 book series that has continued to grow in popularity and gain readership with each new installment like this one has. The Star Wars franchise is the only other thing I can think of that comes close, and personally, my interest in that series decreased with each installment, while my eagerness for the next HP book increased with each one.

I've never seen a more anitcipated book than this one in my entire life, and I doubt I'll ever see it again. The entire phenomenon has been amazing to watch, from both the standpoint of a fan and that of an author/publisher. Even with her literary faults (yes, from a technical point of view, she has them), this woman has accomplished what authors everywhere dream of. It is truly amazing.

When you have a book that has been anticipated for this long, it's hard not to be disappointed by something. We all have our favorite characters that we don't want to see die. We have strong opinions on who is really evil and who isn't. We have ideas perhaps of how it should wrap up. With so much at stake in this story line, I'm sure every reader will find a place to complain about. But I'm not going to complain—at least, not very much—because I was satisfied with the story. I loved this book. I love this series. Now that it is complete, I can safely say that this series is currently my all-time favorite.

Spoiler Alert: From here out, there will be hints and clues. I do not name any of the people who died, but you might be able to figure it out. I do however name some (but not all) of the people who survived. Read at your own discretion.








I think the biggest question in everyone's mind is who is going to die and who is going to live. Some of the deaths were expected, some of them not. While many of them were sad, there were only two that were absolutely shocking to me. I'm not going to include the deaths of people we don't really know, but of the major characters—those who have been with us through several books—I do have a few comments. But I don't want to give anything away to those who are still reading, so...

Death #1—The first member of the Order of the Phoenix to die. I was okay with this one. Sad, but he died fighting the Death Eaters.

Death #2—The unexpected stabbing. Totally shocked! Did not in my wildest imagining see this one coming. Very sad. I couldn't believe it. I'm still reeling.

Death #3—I sort of figured this one would have to happen. His real nature was as I suspected it would be and I'm glad to be right about it. To have it otherwise would have made other characters suspect.

Death #4—One of the D.A. The other complete shocker! Very sad about this one. I'm curious to see if Rowling explains why she chose this one to die.

Deaths #5 & #6—More of the Order. I knew some from this group would die. I was sorry about these two. I was attached to them but at least they went together. And I could see the circular storyline immediately.

Death #7—Another D.A. At first this one didn't register with me, then I remembered him from earlier books and what a sweet child he was.

Death #8—Had me worried for awhile until I realized he wasn't really dead. (Not Harry.) I was going to be really mad if he died, but he didn't. Rowling mentions in an interview that he was never even considered for death because she wanted him at the beginning and the end. Very good.

Death #9—Or is it? This is THE ONE everyone wants to know. I think she did a great job with this. I liked how Harry's loved ones went into the forest with him. I thought that was cool, kind of wrapping it all up.

Death #10—Well, duh. I liked the way this was resolved. It worked for me.

Now for the critical evaluation:

A good portion of the story's timeline seemed to be spent waiting for something to happen. I would have preferred to have the finding and destruction of the various horcruxes spread a little more evenly throughout the book. I would have liked a final summary of the horcruxes and their disposition because sometimes it was hard to remember without referring to notes. I very much liked that it wasn't just Harry who saved the day, and the others got their turns at being the hero. I did think it was a little lame when Ron and Hermione so easily resolved the one, when the others were a huge ordeal.

There were so many characters in this book that it was challenging to keep them all apart. There were places where we were obviously supposed to recognize who someone was, but it took me a bit to figure it out.

There were a few long info dumps to bring us up to speed with Dumbledore and Snape. They were a little slow, but I really don't know how she could have done otherwise without doubling the size of the book. And we needed that information.

I really liked what she did with Kreature. It had always bothered me a bit the way everyone treated him. And I cracked up when Ron finally "got SPEW."

The last chapter (epilog) was my least favorite—not because of who survived or what had become of them, but because it didn't follow up with everyone as fully as I would have liked. There are characters that I care about and I had no clue what happened to them after the final battle. We're even left hanging about a few of the major characters. I mean, we know who survived and who married who, but what are they doing? What were their career choices? This was not as satisfying as I'd hoped it would be. Fortunately, Rowling has done a couple of interviews and answered many of those questions. If you'd like to read them, they are here and here.

Megan and I read this as part of the Read Together program. We had a great time talking about it. In fact, we've talked about it almost every day since we finished the book. Here is what Megan had to say.

Rating: 5+.....................BUY NOW

Buffy

I saw this over on Karen Hoover's blog and couldn't resist.


You Are Buffy the Vampire Slayer

"We saved the world. I say we have to party."


Of course I am!

Somebody tagged me...?

Somebody tagged me for one of those memes the other day but I can't remember who it was.

You might be thinking, "Why don't you check your RSS feeds and see who it was, you lazy blogger, you!"

I can't because I am sitting here blogging on a new Mac laptop that I was forced to purchase because my old one is in the process of dying. It's not quite dead yet. It's in the Mac ICU being harvested for body parts. (They are attempting to recover and backup my files.)

I should be really excited about this new computer because it really is snazzy and cool. But I'm sort of bummed because I didn't really have a spare $250 million billion dollars lying around, which is what a new Mac costs these days. So I sit here typing with ambivalent fingers. I can't afford the computer and yet I can't afford not to replace it because that's sort of how I earn my living these days. I don't just use it for blogging, y'know.

And yes, I do need exactly this machine (I got the 15") because when I'm working I have to have about half a dozen complex typesetting and graphics applications open and in use at the same time. Anything less than this model would choke the first time I tried to put it through its paces. I really need the vroom.

So whoever tagged me, please have a little compassion and remind me who you are. Thanks.

Now playing on my iPod: Rainy Days and Mondays (and dead computers) by The Carpenters