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Fanfic Notes 2016, And Onto Next Year

Considering the first chapter of Royal Pains ended up becoming the first three chapters of Royal Pains, I don't think I'll finish it in 2016, so I'll leave the notes for it next year. Some people use drugs to alter their reality, I use writing to escape mine, lol, and while I hope 2017 isn't as horrible as 2016, I'm not counting on it. Some notes, and also, since brendala puts in a lot of work and does a lot of illustrating that never gets widely circulated, I've included my favorite doodle that she did for a work.

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Santa 2016

Andy took this week off, so after B's therapy we went to the mall to see Santa. Last year we took them to see Santa at an even specifically for autistic children and the Santa was a grandfather to an autistic and it worked out real well. So we were a little nervous doing a mall Santa. But we didn't need to be.

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Trying a Tree

Went ahead and got our tree out. This is the first year for us to have it in the living room. In years past we put it in the front room to keep it away from the pets, but since we moved the kid's toys to that room there isn't space anymore.

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I Found a Way I Like Doing Thanksgiving

Halloween is my Christmas. And for whatever reason I had a hard time getting into the spirit this year. Which means getting into the Thanksgiving/Christmas spirit seems impossible right now. Partly things with Thanksgiving are conflicted because of the atrocities going on at Standing Rock that really make it hard for me to embrace the holiday this year because of the cognitive dissonance. But even in better years, it would feel like I'd get a lot of time off only to have to go and be social and get nice and drained and go back to work feeling even more exhausted than if I hadn't had a holiday. So this year I ended up saying to hell with it.

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Counseling is in the Blood

With the election, listening to Hamilton and doing some reading on the colonial period, I revived my interest in genealogy and look up my fifth generation grandfather, Colonel Abram Penn. He's not one of the big Revolutionary War heroes, but he did know George Washington, so...

Anyway, I found that a licensed counselor in NC set up a housing foundation for veterans and named it after Colonel Penn...his fifth generation grandfather. So, it looks like I am not the only one of Colonel Penn's descendants to go into counseling! So it must be genetic.

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Why I'm Wearing a Safety Pin

At a high school near me, someone drew in chalk on the sidewalk a wall and wrote "build that wall." A Muslim student's hijab was ripped from her head. The n slur is flying fast and loose and white kids are telling black kids that soon they will be back to picking cotton. There are similar reports from across the country of hateful episodes, and it worries me to no end that the election of a bullying racist misogynist has just legitimized this.

We have found a way to strike back, though, thanks to a little help from our allies across the pond. After the Brexit vote people started wearing safety pins to let immigrants and refugees know they were safe to ride on the train with and would be welcoming and friendly. Now Americans are wearing them to show solidarity and support for women, LGBT, immigrants, the differently abled, pretty much anyone who Trump has insulted.

I got mine yesterday and feel better wearing one now. Granted, the only place I went to today was a remote park so I could spend some quiet, healing time in nature with my kiddos, but I did run into a few people, all of them POC who looked devastated and like they were there for the same reasons I was. I have no idea if they knew the symbolism of what I was wearing, but I hope they did and I hope it makes it easier.

The second part of this? Bystander intervention. Please read to link for information on what to do if you witness harassment. The steps are,

1. Address the person being harassed, do not address the attacker.
2. Offer to sit with the person, walk with them, engage in harmless conversation until the attacker leaves.
3. Once the attacker leaves, offer to escort them to a safe place, but be understanding if they just need you to leave so they can process what just happened.

I have a bad feeling that things are going to get very ugly. These are simple things we can do to fight back against the ugliness.

A Distraction: G's in a Big Girl Bed Now

So yesterday I channeled my rage into putting together G's big girl bed. She started climbing out of her crib regularly so it was time to make the switch. She chose a Minnie Mouse bed spread. She adores Minnie Mouse (which drives me a little crazy as she is the ultimate damsel in distress), granted, I think G just likes how she looks as she started receiving Minnie Mouse toys from relative before she ever saw a Minnie Mouse cartoon.

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Election Day I got added to the Pantsuit Nation group on Facebook. It was so positive and supportive. People shared stories and photos of voting for women's rights, for the rights of the differently abled, for the rights of POC, for the rights of LGBT, for the rights of immigrants, for the rights of minorities, for the rights of the First Americans. We were voting for something. I read people's stories of hope throughout the day, contributed one of my own and felt more positive than I ever have through this election.

Unlike a lot of liberals, I never let myself believe we had it in the bag until that morning. I thought that a Trump victory was remote, but I still had this anxiety it would happen. I've also noticed a geographical shift here. People like my sister, who lives in a liberal college town and is getting her Ph.D in sociology, thought Trump never had a chance. Friends who had moved to Austin were angry that Clinton wasn't left enough and didn't support her (which put me in opposition with people I'm not used to being in opposition with, feel like I've been fighting a war on multiple fronts). I worried that they forgot what it is like to live in a red state where people are still foaming at the mouth over the fact that gays can get married and well, to be honest, that slavery ended (and no, I am not exaggerating). I worried about gerrymandering. I worried that emotional fearmongering of immigrants was stronger than reason and compassion. And the liberals like me stuck in a red area had the same trepidation and concerns. Let me say, next time, I hope the liberals in liberal areas listen to us more.
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Private Practice, Getting My Footing

So October was the first month I was in the green. Yay! Amazing what happens when you only see 1 or 2 clients a week and you stick only with insurance companies that actually reimburse you. I'm feeling a bit more confident that this is something I can actually make a living in, it just means weathering the early rough starts and mistakes. And hopefully next year I can turn a consistent profit and bring in some money for the family rather than draining it.

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Happy Halloween!

Well, I was planning to dress B up as Wreck it Ralph and G as Vanellope, but my mom took them shopping, and B picked out a shark head and monster gloves and G picked out Olaf. She was the cutest Olaf ever! And B's thing lately is crawling like a predator and roaring.



B and G in front of our haunted tree.

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