I've decided it is not wrong to feel such elation over a bunch of kids instead of over a boy. Plus, the elation seems more stable from the kids.
The past two days have been wonderful for me. My parents are out of town, so I've been able to putter around the house and do whatever to my heart's content (if only whatever included my fellowship proposal). Mostly, this has meant hanging out with people (out of the house, strangely), cooking/baking, reading, and watching Gilmore Girls. There's been some cleaning too.
Now, to get to the elation. On Saturday morning, I started babysitting for a new family, and the kids are great. In fact, they are G-R-E-A-T great; it's truly that wonderful. They were so excited to see me, and we played the whole time. I have finally figured out what great babysitting truly is.
I was supposed to have my second date with a guy I met on Craigslist today, but that's not happening, thanks to the cold that's kicking my butt. We were supposed to see Elizabethtown (yay Orlando Bloom). I've also had to cancel my hangout plans for tomorrow. Hopefully, I will be all repaired by Saturday to enjoy babysitting and weekend Halloween parties.
This may be a total copout, but I'm going in my old SCA garb to the Halloween things. I can't think of a convincing reason to come up with a better costume, and I really don't have the energy to try. It's kind of sad, since I had tons of great costumes as a kid (space princess, Carmen Sandiego, Jill Frost, etc). I'll still try and take pics, since my SCA clothes are way cute. I hope they still fit alright; it's been something like two years since I've worn any garb. I'm also trying to decide whether or not to wear my bar wench bodice outfit or my Turkish dancing outfit. My good buddy Jules made my Turkish dancing outfit, and it's comfy, but the bar wench is also cute, but not so comfy. I suppose all this leans toward the dancing outfit, eh?
I'd ixnayed carving a pumpking this year, but now I'm starting to rethink that decision. Hey, maybe it'll be fun . . . maybe. I am baking a cute monster cake, so I'll try and take pictures of that too.
I'm really excited for Halloween. I love handing out candy to little kids :-)
I've been battling some sort of cold off and on for near on the last two weeks (well, since right before I left Gold Beach). It's a sinusy, little drippy, and mostly just back of the throat congested thing. I'd really like it go away already, since I've been sleeping a lot, trying to eat well, and getting some exercise. I can't figure out why it won't just quit and go away.
Walmart makes one great point in the NYTimes article:
Mr. Scott said that as the largest buyer of manufactured goods in the world, Wal-Mart has the power to encourage its more than 60,000 suppliers to adopt environmentally conscious business practices. "Our most direct impact will be on our suppliers," he said. "If we request that our suppliers use packaging that has less waste or materials that can be recycled, everybody who buys from that manufacturer will end up using that package."
But here's the clincher, also from the NYTimes article:
Carl Pope, the executive director of the Sierra Club and a board member of Wal-Mart Watch, a group critical of Wal-Mart, said that, from an environmental standpoint, Wal-Mart's stated goals would bring tangible improvements.
But, he said, they had not addressed the land-use impact of locating new stores in rural areas, covering fields or wetlands and prompting customers to consume extra gasoline to reach them. Even so, "these are positive steps," Mr. Pope said. "If they do these things, it's not greenscamming. If they did what they say they will, it would be major shift."
I'm glad that Walmart is aspiring to these new goals. Their emphasis on sustainability and better environmental practices by their suppliers has the ability to influence almost all the products that go through the US market, since they are a major buyer in the United States. Even worldwide, they will have an influence, since they probably buy products that also ship to other countries.
This still isn't enough to get me shopping at Walmart; my foremost convinction remains the belief that saving the environment will take more than producing items out of recycled goods or with less packaging. While these steps will help, only reduction of consumption and serious reause on the part of the consumer will truly reduce our ecological footprint in a meaningful way. Still, this is a good start, and I'm glad that many environmental organizations are (tentatively and carefully) applauding Walmart for this new commitment.
While I wouldn't use these in a home decor situation, I still drool over the skulls at Skulls Unlimited. Honestly, how cool are these? When I first saw the link on Pharyngula, I could not believe it. An actual online store where you can order actual, bonified skulls?
Okay, so, some of them are fake. But a lot of them are real. Now, tell me, don't you just want to rush out and purchase a nifty alligator skull?
I would link you to the great alligator skull, but they seem to navigate in frames of some sort with a static address. Therefore, I'll just leave you at this: try and find the chihuahua skull. It's in mammalia, carnivora, domestic dog breeds. You will be so glad you did!
Has any one of my readers ever tried it? I'm thinking of going next week. I like to dance, I don't want to worry about having a consistent partner, and I'm hoping to meet some new, social people. My brother suggested it, and it sounds like fun, even if my brother is a little . . . strange. It appears that Seattle has a pretty well established circle of contra dancing.
What about other cities? Have any of you heard of contra dancing in your locales? If I end up liking it, contra dancing might be something I look for in my grad school city (I still have about a month to decide and email places and figure this stuff out . . . I'm not set in stone yet, I've just got to pick some places and apply).
I'll update on how it all is if I end up going. I hope I can make the time, since this sounds awfully cool.
I've started the long process of decluttering and shedding myself of those last vestiges of childhood. At some point, I'm sure I'll look back and see, "gee, perhaps I got rid of too much." But I am certain that I will not miss any of these purged items while fitting all my belongings into my car. I certainly didn't miss hardly anything except my art supplies in Gold Beach, and I've already got plans to use up my art supplies here so I can be free to purchase new art supplies wherever I go. Everyone (okay, every artistic person) loves buying new art supplies.
In many ways, this is really frustrating. My room, which was already disgusting when I moved back in (think recombining my apartment, dorm room, and childhood room all at once), has become almost uninhabitable. I'm hoping to get it back into some semblance of shape within two weeks. Really, I'm hoping to be done with everything by the time I take my Subject GRE on November 12th.
Decluttering begins with one step: actually tackling the problem. With that said, I'll stop the brief procrastination break and get back to it.
I'm working on a fellowship/grant proposal right now for graduate school (hence the quietness around here; I swear I have pictures to post soon). I'm citing a source I found, but I pulled the pages off of a faculty member's website instead of from the book he contributed to. This worked out just fine; I got the article I wanted without buying a $325 book or driving to the UW to use their library.
However, I was stumped on one item: when you cite a source, you need to use the page numbers from the book in your citation. What to do?
Thank goodness for amazon's "look inside this book" feature. The particular book I was looking at had the index in this feature, and I was able to look up my topic (and therefore page numbers) in said index. What a boon.
Now, off to finish the grant proposal of much difficulty. I was almost done when I realized NSF wants the proposal in a much different format than I'm used to. Much rewriting later, I'm halfway done again.