Sunday, November 14, 2010

Mid-Month NaNoWriMo Update

I should be writing my NaNoWriMo story right now, but I need to take a little break.

I was sick on Thursday and Friday. That could have been a perfect time to get some extra words in, but instead all I did was lie in bed, alternately sleeping and watching movies. Many movies: Notting Hill, The Ugly Truth, Proof of Life, Greenfingers, Robin Hood (2010), half of Australia (skipped the beginning), and When Harry Met Sally. Stay away from The Beguiled and Mr Fix It, both of which I abandoned after the first 10-20 minutes.

Yesterday was the "halfway" NaNoWriMo party at the Hugo House in Seattle, where ~50 of us gathered to write and chat for most of the day. I got up to 18k words by the end of the day.

Today, I'm currently at 20k. I still need another 3k to be on track, so I'll probably go to bed tonight a little behind, but that's much better than the 6k I was behind for a while. I'm taking a break now, despite needing more worlds, because I rewarded myself at 20k with a lemon bar and a hot chocolate and now I have a food coma. :)

In my story, I keep forgetting about one minor character or another, so they jump back into the story at random points after having been out of the story for many scenes. Oops. That's what December is for, right?

My characters have decided to take the king's second son -- still a baby -- to another kingdom. Unexpected, but it makes a certain amount of sense within the story. And now the goddess of life is going to claim the baby as one of her Chosen: also very unexpected. That's going to put a kink in their plans, for sure. Not to mention when the assassin gets captured, (mistakenly) thinks the clairvoyant betrayed him, and intends to kill her when he espaces; meanwhile, the clairvoyant will have to take care of herself and the royal baby while attempting to rescue the assassin. Good times ahead.

I still have no idea how the story will end, especially not with these sudden plot points that have appeared unexpectedly. But that's actually one of my favorite parts of NaNo: the story and characters go off on their own, and the writer has to chase along behind them. Sometimes shouting, "What the hell do you mean by that??" :)

Alright, enough of a break. None of these words are counting toward my 23k that I need tonight. Back to the salt mines of NaNo I go!


Friday, August 13, 2010

Omg I'm a Googler!

Champagne! Excitement! Ponies! It's public!

I joined Jambool back in December. Today, we've officially been acquired by Google! It's been crazy-distracting keeping up work as usual while having the acquisition process going on. So much uncertainty and changes going on. And when the story leaked on TechCrunch this Monday, we had to fend off our techie friends' questions with "no comment" until the deal closed today. Now I can finally explain in detail what's going on!

For the most part, I'm excited. The benefits sound awesome (free meals! subsidized massages!). It will be very interesting to be part of Google and see how things work there. From what I've heard, they're a very developer-centric culture, which will be interesting to see in a big corporate context (rather than a startup context, where it's hard to be anything but). Retention bonus handcuffs are very shiny, too. ;)

But there are some downsides; almost nothing is 100% good, eh? It is a big company, so I'll be going back to that environment. Also, we're being asked to relocate to Mountain View within 6 months. I like it here in Seattle — I have friends here, and I actually like the weather. :P Also, I'm not so crazy about the suburban sprawl that is the South Bay. But que será, será.

All things considered, I'm super excited about this new phase of my (ex-)Jambool career. :)

So my schedule for the next two weeks is hectic: partying today ;), flying to Mountain View for week-long orientation & training, flying back to Seattle to settle into the Fremont office, then flying to Hawaii(!!) for a long weekend celebration with the Jamboolers. Life's tough around here.


Saturday, May 22, 2010

Recovered; Still Engaged; Moved; Aunty C


It's been so long since I've written! First, I'm completely recuperated from my surgery. I'm very, very happy that my stupid, broken gallbladder is no longer attacking me. :) I can eat whatever I want now and I don't have to be afraid of it hurting.

On the topic of weddings, we are still engaged and we still don't have a more concrete date than "some time in 2011." We continue not-planning. ;)

We moved from our rented house to an apartment in the Fremont neighborhood. Packing our boxes and bags and everything was an epic disaster that lasted for 2 or 3 weeks. And now in the apartment, we still have the majority of our things in boxes. At least the boxes are only in one room of the apartment and we can use the rest. There are photos on Flickr.

Other news... Forrest has a full-time job at Jambool as an engineer! Yes, you read that right, he's working with me at the same company.

And in other, sadder, news, I attended the memorial service for my Aunty C, who died this past winter. She was 96 years old, was always feeling bad, and it was simply her time to go. Her family meet on Mount Diablo to scatter her ashes.


¡Tanto tiempo que no he escrito aquí! Primero, estoy completamente recuperada de mi cirugía. Estoy muy, muy contenta que ya no me ataque mi estúpida vesícula biliar rota. :) Puedo comer lo que quiero ahora y no tengo miedo de que me duela.

De la tema de bodas, todavía estamos prometidos y todavía no tenemos una fecha más concreto como "algún tiempo en 2011." Sigamos no-planeando. ;)

Nos mudamos desde nuestra casa alquilada hacia un apartamento en el barrio de Fremont. El hacer de las maletas y cajas y bolsas y todo era un desastre "épico" que prolongó atrás 2 o 3 semanas. Y ahora en el apartamento, todavía tenemos la mayoría de nuestras cosas en cajas. Al menos las cajas están en sólo un cuarto del apartamento y podemos usar los demás. Hay fotos en Flickr.

Otras noticias... ¡Forrest tiene un trabajo a jornada completa en Jambool como ingeniero! Sí, lo lees correcto, él trabaja conmigo en la misma empresa.

Y hablando en otras cosas, cosas más tristes, asistí a las honras fúnebres para mi Tía Cita, quien murío el invierno pasado. Ella tenía 96 años, siempre sentía mal, y simplemente le llegó la hora. La familia de mi tía reunimos en el Monte Diablo para esparcir sus cenizas.


Friday, February 26, 2010

Global Warming is God's Fault

The Devil asks, "First an ice age. After that, global warming. Then another ice age. And now more global warming... Would you mind telling me what you're doing with that poor planet?" And God answers, "Pasteurizing it."


Monday, February 22, 2010

Lesson Learned: Don't Push Yourself When Recovering from Surgery (Duh)

With respect to my recent surgery, I thought I was recovering nicely. So well, in fact, that this weekend I did quite a bit of walking around with my friends. Come Saturday night / Sunday morning, I barely slept because pain in my side kept waking me up. Last night I slept with the help of 2 Percocet. :(

I was supposed to go back to work today. But because I was dumb and pushed myself too much too fast when I thought I was feeling okay, I'm going to have to wait a little while longer. So I'm taking it easy again today — lots of lying and sitting around is on the menu.


Thursday, February 18, 2010

Weddings Are Just Special Dinner Parties, No?

I spent some time at Barnes & Noble yesterday, looking at wedding-planning books. I've concluded that I must be a bad female, because I just don't get a lot of what goes into the "traditional" expensive wedding and all its assorted related parties.

bridesmaids, maid of honor
What does a bridesmaid do? What does the maid of honor do that's distinct from that?
groomsmen, best man
Ditto the bridesmaids question, but for the guys. And what if all but one of the single guys are also my close friends?
rehearsal dinner
If you go through the whole thing as practice run, doesn't that make the wedding itself feel like "hey, we've done this before"?
bachelor and bachelorette parties
We're supposed to celebrate our soon-to-be-gone life as singles, "one last hurrah" before we're no longer single. But... what if we've been living together for 4 years now — I haven't been single in a long time, as far as I'm concerned. And pretty much all our friends our mutual, and male. I would feel pretty left out if Forrest went out partying with all my friends but I wasn't invited, especially since I have like one close female friend so I couldn't even do "my own" party.
escort card tree
...the hell? Never even heard of such a thing until today.
wedding favors, invitations
I have to agree with a lot of websites on this one: Who actually keeps these things? Maybe the mothers and grandparents of the bride and groom. But I'd be surprised if my friends, cousins, etc are really going to hang on to a wedding favor or invitation for any reason but guilt over throwing it away.
bridal shower
What goes on at such things? And why are there no "groom showers"? Men so need more showers than women do. ;)

The more I look at books and web pages about wedding planning, the more it seems like the reception is just a big dinner party shindig. With pretty dresses and candles. But still, basically a dinner party. If our wedding party is only 25-30 people, I don't really get how this is so much more of a big deal to plan compared to, say Christmas dinner. I am wrong?


Engagement Rings

So I don't like the traditional diamond solitaire engagement ring. I never have. On a practical level, the stone gets caught on things ("Oh noes, my favorite sweater!") and likes to twist off-center, and I hate my rings off-center. Just one of those things. On an emotional level, having a big rock on my finger would feel gaudy — it doesn't fit my aesthetic tastes, nor do I feel any need to flaunt dollar signs on my finger, y'know?

Forrest and I went to Green Lake Jewelery Works (which is apparently some big-name custom shop, not just our little local shop, go figure) to talk with the jewelers there about how much custom rings would cost. Since we're holding off the wedding date itself primarily for financial reasons, we wanted to ask about designs that would allow us a simple engagement ring now that could then be combined* into a more expensive custom wedding ring later.

We came up with a design that we really like: a subtle two-tone band, with engravings across the ring, like combining these two rings (plus tiny inset gems on mine). This design even allows for wearing plain bands that later become the final ring.

Unfortunately, the plain bands weren't going to be in our immediate price range (although the final price the custom wedding rings is okay, I think). We decided that, if we can't get the engagement-ring-that-becomes-the-wedding-ring thing working for us right now, we might as well keep the engagement rings super simple and inexpensive. After all, we're only wearing the engagement rings for a small amount of time; it makes more sense (to us) to splurge on the the custom wedding rings instead, since those are the rings we'll be wearing for the rest of our lives. (Omg! I'm getting married!! Sometimes it just hits me, like this thing is real, y'know? Hehe...)

Anyway. We've been wearing these plain silver bands on our right hands since 2007, when we were long-distance for the year that I had moved to Seattle but Forrest still had a couple quarters of college left to finish. Forrest suggested that we just use those rings as the engagement rings, then "upgrade" to the custom wedding rings when we get married. Sounds like a brilliant idea to me! The only problem is that, while Forrest's ring fits on his left-hand ring finger, mine was too big. So I went back to Something Silver (where we originally got the rings) and bought myself a size 4 silver ring to wear on the correct finger.

So now I'm properly engaged and ring-ified! It's really pretty awesome. :)

* I don't like the tradition of wearing both the engagement and wedding rings after the wedding. I want just one ring on my finger, and ideally I'd like the engagement ring to become the wedding ring. Alas, that's not happening, but it's not really a big deal.


Wedding Cheesecake

Forrest and I just had the following IM conversation:

Me: some book suggests wedding cheesecake
Forrest: ooooooooooooh
Forrest: i looooooove you
Me: but that would clearly be a bad idea
Me: because I'd find you hiding in the kitchen even before the ceremony, bloated from eating allllll the cheesecake, and you'll just burp instead of saying "I do," and that's not so romantic ;)


Tuesday, February 16, 2010


Forrest and I have been dating for four and a half years now. We've discussed marriage off and on for the past two or three of those years, but we never made anything official.

The surgery helped clarify some things for us, like how the things we disagree on are so petty in the face of the big things that matter to us. When I really needed Forrest, he was right there for me, taking care of me, making sure I was okay, worrying for me, and sometimes just holding my hand to comfort me. He has just the right amount of seriousness and playfulness, emotion and strength. I was so grateful that I didn't have to go through that long night of my gallstone attack alone, nor have to make the decision to do emergency surgery alone and scared.

In so many ways, we're on the same wavelength. We talked a lot after the surgery, especially today when we had some time to ourselves. (My mom has been staying with us this week to help take care of me. She's been awesomely helpful, but it has also meant less private time for us to discuss what we're going through.)

We've definitely talked about marriage and long-term life goals before — quite a lot, in fact — so this isn't some rash decision rushed into just because of the surgery. But the surgery, for me, did stir up some strong emotions and opened up the conversation again between us. So when we were talking more tonight (at the bookstore, where else?), it just seemed right to ask Forrest if he would marry me. He said yes.

:) :D :) Omg!! ;)

We have no date set — we want to pay of credit cards and rebuild our emergency fund first. But we've been together for more than four years now; I don't think either of us is going anywhere. And that, really, is why it seems right that we're getting married: it's what we've practically been doing anyway. We want each other in our lives in the future, indefinitely. So let's make it official already! :)


Thursday, February 11, 2010

Gallbladder, Bother Me No More!

My gallbladder obviously reads my blog and took offense at Tuesday's post. So much so that it decided to attack me, unprovoked, on a nearly empty stomach, from 9:30 PM Tuesday until 4 PM yesterday — at which point we cut the damn thing out of me! So I'm at the hospital, recovering from my cholecystectomy that the surgeon says went very smoothly. (Well, for me. Not so much the gallbladder. Muahaha!)

I'll report more later, but for now I wanted to let y'all know that I seem to be doing just fine. Thank you everyone for your well-wishes!


Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Surgeon, Take 2


I met with a second surgeon today. I liked him much better; I'm very glad I didn't just go with the first guy I talked to. So, dear gallbladder, start packing: you're being evicted next Friday!


Encontré a un segundo cirujano hoy. Me caía más bien que el otro; me alegro que no elegí el primer hombre con el que hablé. Pues, vesícula biliar querida, vete a freír espárragos: ¡ya te desahuciaré el viernes que vienes!


vete a freír espárragos
go fry asparagus
Isn't that an awesome turn of phrase? Sure, it means something closer to "go jump in the lake" or "go fly a kite," as opposed to "start packing" or "get lost" like I originally meant... but it sounds so cool!
to evict; to declare terminally ill
How's that for a perfect double meaning? You hear that, gallbladder??


New Apartment

Forrest and I are moving. More precisely, we're downsizing from our rental house to a simple 1-bedroom apartment. Our goal — which we met exactly — was to cut our rent in half. Having an extra $800 each month will be nice, both for paying off debt acquired while I was unemployed for several months, and later on for saving.

The square footage is definitely much less, but in our current house we're really only using the bedroom, bathroom, living room, and kitchen. That makes up the entirely of the new apartment, so we're not giving up any rooms we really use. Not having "excess" rooms does mean that we'll have to rein in our packrat tendencies... but we both actually think that will be a good thing, even if it's difficult for us.

The location of the new place is actually better in many ways. It's in the Fremont neighborhood of Seattle, so we'll be significantly closer to our good friend Jerry. It will also be nice to be part of a real neighborhood, rather than just a house on a busy street like we are now. We'll be only a few blocks away from several good cafés, Thai restaurants, a yummy taco truck, and the (itty-bitty) Fremont library. Even the big grocery store is pretty close, which will be nice.

Pictures — hastily taken with an iPhone camera, without opening the blinds so it's looking at its worst ;) — are available on Flickr


Wednesday, February 3, 2010

Dismissive Surgeon

I had my consultation with a surgeon about my gallstones today. Overall, I was pretty disappointed with the guy. He was very dismissive of my concerns — "Don't bother reading studies, they're all crap, there's practically no risk, none of my patients have ever complained, I hesitate to even mention these risks because I don't want to put them in your head, so let's schedule the surgery!"

I'm mostly convinced that I'm going to have to get my gallbladder removed, based on what I've heard from doctors and what I've read online. But, as far as I can tell, there are some risks involved (particularly the possible long-term side effects such as chronic diarrhea or pain). I could believe that the risks are low and that it's still the best option I have... but I want a doctor who's honest about this stuff, not dismissive.

As Forrest pointed out, he's not just the guy doing the surgery, but also the guy I'll have to work with if I have any post-operation concerns. And I really just don't get the warm fuzzies from this guy.

So I think I'm going to shop around for a different Seattle gallbladder surgeon.


Tuesday, February 2, 2010

When Gallstones Attack

Since it's 4 AM and I'm going to be awake for the next hour or two, I might as well update y'all on what's been going on with me.

I'm awake right now because I'm having my third gallstone attack. It's this sharp, crampy pain in my upper right side. If this attack goes anything like the first two, it will get increasingly painful over the next hour, stay like that for a while, then gradually resolve itself. What's happening is the gallstones in my gallbladder got agitated around in there, and are moving in and out of the various tubes in the area, causing pain as they do so.

As long as the gallstones don't get stuck anywhere, my only symptom will be pain. If they do get stuck and block something, then I could develop a fever, nausea, and other fun things that would make this more of an emergency situation. I'm hoping it's just pain for the next few hours. :( I've taken ibuprofen for pain management and am being (hyper)vigilant about any more serious symptoms.

Apparently, gallstones don't dissolve themselves over time, nor is medication very effective at breaking them up. I've read that if you have only a few small stones, lithotripsy can bombard them with strong acoustic pulses to break them up. ("The final power level usually depends on the patient's pain threshold" — oh great...) But that method is often ineffective at preventing gallstone recurrence.

Otherwise, the other primary options are gallbladder removal and the restricted-diet-and-cross-my-fingers approach. I don't particularly like the idea of surgery, even laparoscopic surgery... but then I don't like playing Russian roulette with my health, either. Even religiously following a fat-restricted diet does not guarantee that I'll have no more attacks, it merely decreases the likelihood of their frequency.

Wednesday I have an appointment with a surgeon to discuss options and get his recommendation for my particular case. I'll keep you guys informed.

Update, 7:22 AM: Pain's gotten worse, not better. Still no nausea, fever (subjective judgement; can't find thermometer), or other worrying symptoms. But this pain sucks. I've been writhing on the couch for the past three hours. Doctor instructed me over the phone to take two more ibuprofen and two Tylenol. She said if it didn't get better, it means the bile ducts may not be opening back up... which would mean emergency open surgery, not the "friendly" laparoscopic surgery. Fuck. (Sorry, Mom; but sometimes it's appropriate, eh? ;))

Update, 2:12 PM: The ibuprofen + Tylenol combo helped enough that I fell asleep from 7:30 until 10 AM. It was still hurting then, but in a very manageable, beginning-of-the-end sort of way. I felt maybe 70% better. I moved from the couch back to bed then, and slept until 2 PM. I feel 90% better now; there's still some twinge of discomfort going on, but I'd no longer describe it as "pain."

So it looks like I've escaped the emergency scalpel, but let me tell you, I'll be all ears when I talk to the surgeon tomorrow.


Saturday, January 30, 2010

Company Ski; PS, Gallstones

I'm going to bed in Leavenworth tonight: All my coworkers and their spouses/girlfriends are here for a company ski trip. Will write more later. And by the way, I have gallstones that'll probably require surgery. Most on that later, too.


Saturday, January 16, 2010

Cuban Dinner


I had a good time tonight! My dad's cousin recently married and his new wife is Cuban. I didn't meet them during Christmas, because I had to visit my boyfriend's family. So when I was in California this weekend, we made plans to meet.

We went to a restaurant in the delta, because it is halfway between my parents' house and theirs. The wife's name is Ellie, and I think we got along well. At least I liked her. :) We talked for two hours, almost entirely in Spanish. Their children (who are younger than 12, but I don't know exactly how old) are learning English, and the child of my dad's cousin (from a previous marriage) is learning Spanish. It was a really cool dinner.

She told me that my accent sounds Spanish (as in, from Spain), not Mexican or from elsewhere. Although I don't use the "Spanish lisp" or the form "vosotros." Maybe I should cultivate an Andalusian accent, which is most similar to what I speak now...

We're going to share our email addresses and Skype usernames to talk more. :)


¡Lo pasé muy bien esta noche! El primo de mi padre se casó recientemente, y su nueva esposa es cubana. No les conocí durante Navidad, por que tuve que visitar a la familia de mi novio. Así que cuando estuve en California este fin de semana, hicimos planes para reunirnos.

Fuimos a un restaurante en la delta, porque está en la media entre la casa de mis padres y la suya. La esposa se llama Ellie, y creo que nos caímos bien. Al menos, ella me cayó bien a mi. :) Hablamos por dos horas, casi totalmente en español. Sus niños (que tienen menos de 12 años, pero no sé exactamente cuántos) están aprendiendo inglés, y el niño del primo de mi padre (de un matrimonio previo) está aprendiendo español. Fue una cena muy genial.

Ella me dijo que mi acento suena español (quiere decir, de España), no mexicano ni de otro lugar. Aunque no uso el ceceo ni la forma de "vosotros." Quizás debo fomentar un acento andaluz, que es lo más similar de lo que ya hablo yo...

Compartirémos nuestras direcciones electrónicos y nombres de usuario de Skype para hablar más. :)


Sunday, January 10, 2010

El León, La Bruja y El Armario


I've finally finished reading The Lion, the Witch and the Wardrobe, the first book in the Narnia series (in Spanish). I read it once when I was a kid, but I didn't remember it well and I also wanted to practice my Spanish.

The author's writing style was more... direct? than I like. I'm not quite sure... It seemed not like a dramaticalization but rather a report of the story, told without being sufficiently "in the moment" with the characters.

In any case, I'm glad that I read the whole thing in Spanish.


¡Por fin terminé de leer El león, la bruja y el amario, el primer libro del series Narnia (en español)! Lo leí una vez cuando era niña, pero no bien recordaba bien la historia y también querría practicar mi español.

El estilo de escritura del autor fue más... directo? que lo que me gusta. No sé exactamente... No Me parece no como una dramatización sino más bien un reportaje de la historia, relatada sin estar suficientemente "en el momento" con los personajes.

En cualquier caso, me alegro que lo leí en su totalidad en español.


Sleep Cycle App


Yesterday I read an article on Lifehacker about Sleep Cycle, an iPhone app that monitors your, well, sleep cycle. It works by being inside the bedsheets — its accelerometer measures your movements while your sleep and infers the sleep phase.

Well, that's what the official site suggest. But I put it on top of the bed, not inside, and underneath my pillow even though the site said that's not a good idea. I checked that there was open space above it, so it wouldn't overheat. I woke up twice during the night (as you can see in the graph above), and each time I checked again that everything was okay. (It was).

...And I like the pretty graphs. :)


Ayer leí un artículo de Lifehacker sobre Sleep Cycle, una aplicación para la iPhone que monitoriza pues, tu, pues, ciclo de sueño. Funciona por estar dentro las sábanas de la cama — su acelerómetro mide los movimientos cuando duermes y infiere la fase del sueño.

Bueno, eso es lo que sugiere el sitio oficial. Pero yo la puse encima de la cama, no dentro, y debajo de la almohada aunque la página web dice el sitio que no es una buena idea. Comprobé que había espacio abierto de arriba, para que no se recalentara. Me desperté dos veces durante la noche (como puedes ver en el gráfico de arriba), y cada vez comprobé de nuevo que todo estaba bien. ( fue.)

...Y los gráficos bonitos me encantan. :)


Friday, January 8, 2010

Meeting the Haml Developer

It's a small world — I just ran into the lead developer of Haml, Nathan, at downtown B&N. Friendly guy. Reminded me of Sai from the Conlang-L mailing list, actually.


Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Genmai Cha


My coworkers drink coffee. A lot of coffeee No, you don't understand what I mean. At a minimum, they walk a few blocks to buy cups of coffee 3 times per day. Now, I like coffee. It's possible that I like it too much. :) But the level of my coworkers' coffee-drinking… oi!

I don't want to drink 3 coffees (or mochas, actually) for, hehe, 3 reasons: it's an expensive habit, it's a lot of calories, and it's a lot of caffeine. Because of this, I've bought genmai cha*, a type of Japanese green tea with roasted brown rice. It's a loose-leaf tea, so I also bought an infuser. How cute, no? And, why is the strawberry orange? That's a good question. :)


Mis compañeros de trabajo beben café. Mucho café. No, no entiendes lo que quiero decir. A un mínimo, ellos andan unas cuadras para comprar tazas de café 3 veces cada día. Bueno, me gusta el café. Es posible que me gusta demasiado. :) Pero el nivel de beber café de mis compañeros… ¡ay!

No quiero beber 3 cafés (o mocas, en realidad) por, jeje, 3 razones: es un hábito caro, son muchas calorías, y es mucha cafeína. Por eso, he comprado genmai cha*, un tipo de té verde japonés con arroz integral tostado. Es un té de anillas, así que también compré un infusor. Qué precioso, ¿no? Y, ¿por qué es anaranjada esta fresa? Ésa es una buena pregunta. :)

* I usually mispronounce "genmai cha" as [ʤɛn mɑi ʧɑi], like I've got some vowel harmony going on or something. :P (It should actually be pronounced something like [ɡɛn mɑi ʧɑ], if you were trying to follow the Japanese pronounciation (while still speaking in English).


Tuesday, January 5, 2010

¡Puro Español!


To improve my Spanish, because of the advice of Spanish Only, I've changed the user interface language on my iPhone and web browser (to Spanish, of course). I also tried out Skype with video with my sister's help. We chatted for a bit — everything worked with the netbook webcam and microphone without problem! Now I'm looking forward to chatting with Spanish-speakers on Skype (even though I'm a little scared to use the video, because it makes me nervous).

If you want to chat with me, my Skype username is Arthaey (like it is everyone on the internet).


Para mejorar mi español, debido al consejo de Spanish Only, he cambiado el idioma de la interfaz de usuario de mi iPhone y mi navegador web (a español, claro). También probé Skype con video por el ayudo de mi hermana. Charlemos un rato — ¡todo funciona con el webcam y micrófono de mi netbook sin problemas! Ahora estoy deseando charlar con hispanohablantes por Skype (aunque tengo un poco de miedo de usar el video, porque me pone nerviosa).

Si quieras platicar conmigo, mi nombre de usuario de Skype es Arthaey (como me llamo por todas partes del internet).


Saturday, January 2, 2010

Writing in Non-English First


You guys* know that when I write these bilingual entries, I write in the non-English language first, right? I just wanted to tell you that. :)


Saben ustedes que cuando escribo estas entradas bilingües, escribo en la lenguaje no-inglés primero, ¿no? Sólo quise decirselo. :)

* Amusing coincidence that the plural-you in English that I use, "you guys," sounds pretty informal. But the Spanish translation, "ustedes," is technically a polite/formal pronoun. Of course it's understood in context, but it still amuses me.


Friday, January 1, 2010

Resolutions, Vaguely


I don't like the idea of New Year's resolutions -- they're never fulfilled. But new habits, that are made up of specific, concrete goals, yes. I don't know if I want to elevate these to the level of "resolutions," but these things are important to me. And today is the time to take about such things...

  • I want to be fluent in Spanish. I can communicate well enough, but not fluently. I want to be able to really speak.
  • I want to lose 35 pounds. I had been tracking my weight a few months ago, but I stopped during the last two months. I'm sure that I've gained weight since then. :(
  • I want to continue being creative. I enjoy when I do things like that; I don't do it enough.

Tomorrow I will think about concrete steps that are less will take 1 month or less. (If the steps are larger, they can seem impossible, or, on the other hand, like there's enough time that you can procrastinate.)


No me gusta la idea común de los buenos propósitos de Año Nuevo -- nunca se los cumplió. Pero nuevos costumbres, que están hechos por metas específicas y concretas, sí. No sé si quiero elevar estos al nivel de "buenos propósitos," pero son cosas que me importan. Y hoy es tiempo para hablar de tal cosas...

  • Quiero dominar el español. Puedo comunicar suficientemente, pero no con fluidez. Deseo que podría hablar de verdad.
  • Quiero perder 35 libras. Había estado apuntando mi peso hace algunos meses, pero paré durante los dos meses pasados. Estoy segura de que he ganada peso desde entonces. :(
  • Quiero continuar con la creatividad. Me lo pase bien cuando hago cosas así; no lo hago bastante.

Mañana pensaré en los pasos concretos, que son de duración de sólo 1 mes al máximo. (Si los pasos son mas grandes, se parezcan imposibles, o, por otra parte, como haya tanto tiempo que puedes "procrastinar.")


New Years Day Travels

Traveling back home in New Years Day is looking to be One Of Those Days (TM). So I'm starting to document the fun...

12:00 AM: Happy New Year! I welcome in 2010 in Santa Cruz with Forrest's family while making crepes and drinking cheap champagne. We play Beatlea Rock Band after the stroke of midnight.

1:30 AM: Forrest and I pack up and leave the house. Destination: SFO, for a flight that departs at 6:45 AM.

1:45 AM: Donut run completed successfully. Forrest is now suitably caffeinated for our late night / early morning drive.

2:30 AM: We avoid two deer nommimg on the narrow shoulder of Highway 1. A little while later, we see a dead deer on the side of the road.

3:00 AM: We arrive at SFO. No one is here, surprise surprise. Forrest goes off to park the Jeep for my parents to pick up at a more sane hour while I do the check-in kiosk thing. Our seats have been reassigned so that we're not next to one another anymore, but the kiosk won't let me change them back.

3:30 AM: I settle into the line for security. "Settle" because it won't open until 4:30. Four other people are camped out with me; we wish each other happy new year.

3:45 AM: Forrest arrives from the long-term parking lot and camps with me.

4:30 AM: Right on time, TSA opens up and lets us through without incident. An airport employee buffs the carpet, because... we deserve shiny carpets?

4:45 AM: We found an airport restaurant that's open this early. Too bad they want like $20 for some pre-cooked egg-like dish that I won't even like. So I'm going hungry (for now) while Forrest eats a bacon egg cheese croissant thing. Lack if sleep is getting to me -- I'm beginning to resemble zombie-me. But no svn-commits on my brain, yet.

5:30 AM: I kill half an hour doing a self portrait (of how I feel)on my iPhone while Forrest tries to straighten out why he's assigned a non-existent seat.

5:45 AM: The restaurant I'm waiting for finally opens. They told me they didn't know when they'd open -- apparently they had no cash and couldn't make the decision to open accepting just credit cards without over-the-phone approval for some manager. Clam chowder was pretty decent, though.

6:20 AM: We board the plane in our original seats. Woohoo! Fingers crossed for an uneventful rest of the trip...

10:00 AM: By plane, train, and automobus, we have arrived home! Very tired. Going to sleep now. FSF for dinner, mmm...