Monday, December 31, 2012

Twelve for '12 Recap

Before This year comes to a quick close, I wanted to take a moment to look back at the goals that I set for this last year. Also, recapping this list will help me focus and narrow down my goals for next year.
So here were my Twelve for '12 and how well I did or didn't do with each one.
1. Read 65 Books (moving on up in the reading world)
This one is a high source of disappointment for me. I was able to meet my 2011 goal of 52 books (averaging a book a week), so I amped up my goal. But I have only 39 completed novels for the year. The list will be a separate post, but I feel as though I have failed my inner bibliophile.
2. Get My Passport. Go to Mexico, Go to Canada... Just GO!
I didn't do this one either. So, no traveling was done.
3. Blog at least once a week (we'll see how this one goes.)
Now I'm 0-3. This was not a good blogging year for me. I think about what I would or could be posting about often, but that doesn't quite count.
4. Complete a "crafty" project- Oi. Another rough one
I am not quite sure if any of these count. But, I drew J a picture of her "Hierarchy of Awesomeness" with my remedial level drawing skills of all the reasons why I adore her. I also, just a few days ago, someone had left some Christmas rope from some present wrapping they had left behind and I cut it into 3 pieces and made a braided bracelet and gave it to one of the server's daughters who came in. Other than that. Nada
5. Read the entire Book of Mormon (Again)
6. Continue to build close relaionships with my fam.
Finally one that I can say that I completed. I have been working with Reese in T individually and with my parents to help them to understand more about me and my history in the hopes that they would be more able to support me in a way that I will allow. I finally went on, and enjoyed a family vacation. Hawaii this summer was awesome. I have never been around my family (my mom especially) for that long without some major argument. I have even caught myself feeling excited to go home both in November and for Christmas this year. I think that marks quite positive progress.
7. Have a Completly sober year
YAY!! I finally have another car!
Unfortunately no. Mind you, I have only a small number of moments or days that I spent not in sobriety, which is HUGE progress. But, I know that doesn't excuse the mistakes I did make.
8. Get another car- I'm becoming desperate.
I was almost positive that this goal was just not going to happen this year. But I am so glad this time to be wrong!!!
9. "Speak"- With Timmy and Tash there to cheer me on
Maybe I can squeeze a half point for this one. I did get the privilege to be a Recovery Speaker early this year. And while Timmy and Tash were unable to make it upstairs to sit in on the group... I was able to have Becca and Jess, 2 of my fave techs ever were right there smiling at my answers, giving me various hugs all afternoon, chatting with La and I... Jess even at one point crying. When I saw her welling up I was like, "Stop that! Why are you crying?!?!" and her response was, "Because Steph. I have known you, watched you and have helped treat you for over 4 years now. and I have been waiting all this time to hear you say something like that." It was such a cool experience.
10. Journal. Even when the journey seems too painful or too boring to mention. (you regret not doing it EVERY TIME)
Yet another goal that I struggled with. I did fairly well until early summer and then my usually avid journal writing came to a halt.
11. Date. More than once. Move closer towards an intimate relationship.
I did. And it was both good for me and extremely rough. Good for me to see that there are men that are interested in me, good to practice taking a relationship slowly, just getting to know another person that I was interested in, being flirtatious, learning to accept his compliments, trying to integrate physical closeness, hand holding, hugging, hell we even fell asleep cuddling. These are all things that I was totally unsure when or if they would EVER show up for me.
The not so good... as he ended up treating me in the way that I fear most. That our attempt at a romantic relationship flopped more than Lindsay Lohan's career, which is a bummer to say the least. And figuring out how to bounce back from that has been quite the task.
12. "Meet" with Dad at the ocean.
It was sad and beautiful and sappy and cliche and all kinds of things. But, I figure that there was no better place to attempt this than Hawaii. Wondering whether the sand that washed up and got all over our toes was sand that he had traveled with. And instead of feeling sorry for myself and feeling pathetic, I just smiled and let my voice carry the words of my letter to him out into the sea. Til we meet again Daddy.

Looking back it seems as though I didn't do as well with my goals as a whole. But I do believe that I have continued to move forward this year. I still have so much that I want to change and improve but I am still a different woman, a better and more whole human being today than I was 365 days ago. And I guess that is the best I can do.

Sunday, December 30, 2012

My Year in Books

Here is my yearly list of the books that I enjoyed, struggled through, devoured, nibbled on and experienced the whole spectrum of human emotion. Which is ultimately why I read. I connect so much easier to the characters in the books I read over actual people. But, without labeling that fact as pathetic or grounds to be considered a loner, I am glad that I am this way. I can read and watch how all kinds of people experience their world, triumph with them, grieve with them, watch how healthy and unhealthy characters form relationships. They are, in a sense both my "How-To" mentors and "What-Not-to-Do" examples. I love them. I hate them. and I thank them for continuing to teach me about life.

Books Read in 2012 (Listed from start of year to end)
1. It's Kind of a Funny Story- Ned Vizzini
2. The Other Side of the Couch- Gary Small
3. Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close- Jonathan Safran Foer
4. The Lost Symbol- Dan Brown
5. Ms. Hannah is Bananas (Reading Date4)- Dan Gutman
6. Miss Small is Off the Wall (Reading Date5)- Dan Gutman
7. A Great and Terrible Beauty- Libba Bray
8. The History of Love- Nicole Krauss
9. Never Let Me Go- Kazuo Ishiguro
10. Mr. Hynde is Out of His Mind (Reading Date6)- Dan Gutman
11. Mrs. Cooney is Loony  (Reading Date7)- Dan Gutman
12. Neverwhere- Neil Gaiman
13. A Tree Grows in Brooklyn- Betty Smith
14. The Book of Lost Things- John Connolly
15. Voluntary Madness- Norah Vincent
16. The Fourth Bear- Jasper Fforde
17. Love in the Driest Season- Neely Tucker
18. Moonwalking with Einstein- Joshua Foer
19. In the Woods (Dublin Murder #1)- Tana French
20. Imagine: How Creativity Works- Jonah Lehrer
21. Sex, Drugs and Cocoa Puffs- Chuck Klosterman
22. The Immortal Life of Henrietta Lacks- Rebecca Skloot
23. Triggered: A Memoir of OCD- Fletcher Wortmann
24. The Bully Society- Jessie Klein
25. The Likeness (Dublin Murder #2)- Tana French
26. Seriously... I'm Kidding- Ellen DeGeneres
27. I Love Everybody- Laurie Notaro
28. Faithful Place (Dublin Murder #3)- Tana French
29. The Maze Runner- James Dashner
30. Escape- Carolyn Jessup
31. On Writing- Stephen King
32. Broken Harbor (Dublin Murder #4)- Tana French
33. Words- Ginny Yttrup
34. The Perks of Being a Wallflower- Stephen Chbosky
35. Confessions of a Prairie Bitch: How I Survived Nellie Olsen: Alison Arngrin
36. The Casual Vacancy- J.K. Rowling
37. The Sweetness at the Bottom of the Pie (Flavia DeLuce #1)- Alan Bradley
38. This is How: Augusten Burroughs
39. The Psychopath Test- Jon Ronson
While it bothers me greatly to not be able to list out 65 novels, which was my goal for the year... 39 books is still an okay reading accomplishment, right?

Either Way...
My Top 5 

1. The Dublin Murder Series. I know that this is probably cheating by putting a whole series as one number. but, it's my list, so there!
2. Extremely Loud and Incredibly Close . Such an emotional story and unbelievably interesting and well written novel. and the worst tear-jerker of a movie. Love it!
3. The History of Love. So good that I read it twice back to back.
4. On Writing. Writing and composition pointers from the King himself. I highlighted and underlined this book more than most of my textbooks. Made my desire to become a writer even stronger.
5. Imagine: How Creativity Works. Probably the coolest science non-fiction book I have ever read. It breaks down when and how to allow for our highest level of creativity potential to be produced. It looks inside and explains the companies that use this knowledge to continue to spit out new, original and extremely creative products (The brilliance of Pixar movies as their best example). Such a cool thing to read and learn about.

Friday, December 21, 2012

Ze End of the World

"What would you do if you knew you had only one day to live?"

I never know how to answer that Get-To-Know-You question. Seems far too touchy feely for me. But since The End was supposed to happen today and didn't (Shocker), I'm going to take my activities of the day and use them as my answer. So, apparently, if I only had one day left to live

I would:
-I wake up for day 6 of my uncharacteristic Christmas week illness.
-Give quick ride to an old friend I wasn't planning on seeing today
-Spend 7 hours working at Le Cheese serving ungrateful Holiday Happiness Suckers... with a mock smile and my sexy frog prince of a voice
-But getting to spend 45 minutes with my Timmy (the "need" I've been neglecting for far too long... The hug I have been missing for months.)
-Phone (and therefore) high octane laughter time with J. Full of incessant mockery of Hawk, Sheldon references, my latest work rant and our perfect amount of advice-ing.
-Home to finish my latest book and to watch my newest movie obsession, for the second night in a row, (Pitch Perfect), with my Best. "Acca-Believe it!"
-Now to my nightly chug-a-lug of NyQuil and making a list here on my blog of how I'd spend my last living day...

Pretty well rounded I must say.

I guess I can die happy.

This is just a YouTube video Marco and I used to watch and quote all the time. Just Random Humor

Le Cheese Icebreaker

Steph and HP Question of the Day...
"Which Disney animated character would you be?"

This one caught on fast. I have 6 pages of server pad paper full of my co-workers and their character counterparts. As with any Q.O.D. you can't nominate yourself into or out of what is chosen for you. The more you fight it, the more you ARE what you are trying to get out of.

K: "I don't want to be Ariel!"
Me: um... She's a princess. There are only like 6 of them. It's better than Randall from Monsters Inc. or one of the nameless "bench triplets" that follow Gaston around Beauty and the Beast.
K: If I have to be Ariel, I don't want to be anyone.
Me: That's exactly something Ariel would say.

HP: I think BG should be the Magic Carpet... As he is of service but never talks.

DD: Tim (our General mgr) should be the whale from Pinoccohio... Because he swallows you whole.

Me: Who would D be?
HP: Hmmm.. Crispy Crab Bites...
Me: (already laughing) Why?
HP: Because its the closest thing we have to an STD

I went almost the whole shift without getting named. Then HP came up saying that she found one.

Yup. Sally.
I was intrigued to hear the reasons why as I couldn't quite make the connection.
MC: because she loses her arm...
Me: wha?????
HP: because she is twiggy and has long straight hair
Me: I thought it was off characteristics HP? :)
HP: Well she seems scary but actually is really sweet and takes care of everyone.

Alright. "Nightmare" Sally it is.
Yet another nickname.
I love it!

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Le Cheese Icebreaker

When HP and I got bored obnoxiously early on shift today, our old Question of the Day tradition was reinstated.

"Which Cheesecake Factory menu item best represents you?"

I loved picking dishes we love for people we love... Dishes we hate for those we don't love so much. (ie our least fave manager as Wild Mushroom Soup as it's so bad you don't even want to dip your bread in it) or a mixture of inside jokes with slightly not P.C. racial stereotyping, which is where I guess my chosen name stems from.
3 hours and several pee-in-your-pants close calls later I am home...
Happy to represent my restaurant as

"Skinnyilicious Enchiladas"

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Free at Last

-To sleep in and not speed walk to the bus at the ass crack of dawn each morning
-To visit whomever I choose, whenever I choose
-To drive to Target for no reason other than to hate how much unnecessary cash I could spend in one place
-To not have to be wondering which day I will be plucked dead from hypothermia on a bus stop bench

I don't have a name picked out yet. But, Momma's got wheels again!