lydamorehouse: (renji has hair)
 Last night was the speculative fiction smut reading at Kieran's Pub.  I spent much of the day, yesterday, feeling very nervous about the whole thing. Nervous probably isn't the right word. I do a lot of public performance, much of it off the cuff, but I'm NOTORIOUSLY bad at reading naughty bits, out loud, in front of a crowd. I have _literally_ hired stunt readers, while rolling around in embarrassment under the table at cons during slash readings.

So...

A friend of mine who is an actor in New York volunteered to listen to my pieces and give critique to help improve my performance. They are also a Bleach fan, so we probably spent more of our time together lamenting the ending of the manga.  But, it was really neat to finally see them in person (we did a Google hangout) and put a face and a voice to text, as it were. But, knowing I was going to read to Taylor meant that I practiced both pieces several times, even before talking to them over Hangouts. 

Then, [personal profile] naomikritzer came over and, my random luck, I made an amazing "pot roast hash" out of some leftover rump roast and some veggies.  We chatted for a bit, but both of us had errands to try to get in before the snow started, so we said goodbye early and I headed out with Mason's laptop to Computer Revolution.

I totally recommend Computer Revolution in Roseville to local folks, btw. First of all, they did what we wanted the "Genius Squad" to do at Best Buy, which was test the cord with a voltmeter. The cord, they determined, was shot.  It is, of course, still possible that there is more than one problem going on with the ROG, but we have an easy place to start. Shawn ordered the cord as soon as I told her what I'd learned, since she'd already done all the research in case we might need one. I asked the guys, though, if the cord doesn't solve the issue, are there other options that don't involve replacing the motherboard as Best Buy seemed to suggest would be the only other issue (and far too expensive a prospect). They had lots of options, several of which were very potentially reasonably priced.  So, that's a huge YAY.

Mason came home a bit early from robotics, despite it being "stop build day," the day they have to literally wrap up their robot and put it away until competition, because he was feeling kind of sick. He seems to have caught a cold.  

After picking up Mason, feeding him, etc., I got dressed and headed out.

I got lost at least twice, mostly because I don't know left from right, but I managed to get there by 7:30 pm, which was perfect, as it gave me a chance to find a place to park and get in and get the lay of the land.

Kieran's pub is kind of beautiful. The Not-So-Silent Planet folks managed to have their own private section, a part of the pub that is legit called "The Poet's Room" and it has its own doors, own bar, etc. I was really sad to hear that they will be having to move the venue next season, because it could not be a more perfect place for this kind of event.  It's both public, but very intimate and private.

interior of pub with painted mural on one wall, a small stage in the corner and a few people at tables

The structure of the show was that the first 3/4th were open mic, which... with erotica was.... kind of hoot? I mean, the first person up did two pieces, the first of which was revenge porn with implied rape and I thought "OH SH*T, MY HUMOROUS STUFF IS GOING TO BOMB" but then they did a second piece which was a clever story about an app that allowed you to experience other people's fetishes.  

The whole night was like that--some of the pieces were very INTENSE, some hilarious, several of them were body horror, a number were more traditionally romantic, and then, a few were... well, HOT.

I was horrified to discover, however, that I was scheduled to be the finale. I'm NOT finale material. So. NOT.  But, I did my best. I read a sweet/sensual piece from the sequel to Precinct 13, which is the book I just sold to Wizard Tower Press.  That seemed to go over well. I only stumbled over one line at the very beginning.  

The second piece I read (the first one clocked in at 4 and a half minutes, and I was booked for twelve, so I had to read something else) was actually bit of fan fiction of mine that involves kinbaku, the Japanese art of rope bondage. As noted at the start of this, I get very flushed and flustered reading anything erotic out loud. For a while, when I first starting writing sex scenes as part of my profession as a romance writer, I had to touch type them while LOOKING AWAY FROM THE SCREEN, I was so embarrassed. So, I decided to ask for some help from the audience--audience participation, if you will. So, I asked people to shout out a word for anatomy that starts with "c" and sort of looks like a single finger when I raised one finger, and another part of anatomy that is plural and is usually connected to the first one when I raised two fingers. The audience was very enthusiastic about this. 

But what was funny? I think they were quietly getting into the story, which was kind of unexpected?  I mean, it's out of context and there's some bits that can not possibly have made any sense, but the first time they did their bit and shouted out the words for me, I tried to make a little editorial comment about how wonderfully enthusiastic they were, but the vibe I got from the audience was very "yeah, yeah, get back to the STORY!!"

Which I mean... I guess it never occurred to me that the audience might be very _into_ the story.

I still think it worked pretty well. Having other people say the stuff that I find particularly difficult to say out loud without giggling or stammering awkwardly certainly made the reading more fun for *me.*  

But the unexpected reaction was just sort of funny.

Hopefully, it all worked, I don't know. Personally, I would not have had *me* go last, but people seem to expect great things from me. (You win one second place Dick....) In all seriousness, the other guests were much more polished and professional than I was and I was super impressed with them all. [personal profile] catherineldf read an amazing bit about being a temp worker in an office full of SUPER HOT vampires, which she delivered with her usual style and grace. Laura Packer performed (and I mean PERFORMED) this spooky, mesmerizing retelling of Snow White, where Snow White is the monster of the story. Tom S. Tea read tentacle porn to DIE for.... and then I bumbled in.  Still, the show was super. I am seriously considering making Not-So-Silent Planet a regular thing next season.

And now it is snowing buckets. 

Oh, and school was cancelled for today. Whee!
lydamorehouse: (Renji 3/4ths profile)
The phone rang just now and it was our old vet, Dr. Holly.

We stopped going to All Paws some time ago for various reasons, including issues of money, but when the Lap of Love people asked us if we had vets that should be informed, we told them to let both Como *and* All Paws know, since it seemed right. All Paws had seen Ball for years before we switched.

I can't get over that she called, but Dr. Holly is just that good, just that caring. She was devastated by our loss and was desperate to know what had happened. It was hard to have to tell her that we ultimately had NO IDEA what killed Ms. Ball in the end. I could tell that she was trying very hard not to be incensed on our behalf that Como wasted time with a mistaken first diagnosis. I had to reassure her that this was a mystery that even Dr. Ralph had no clue about when he did the ultrasound, and, given that we were racing against time with Ball's weight loss, Como did the best they could.

Which I really do believe.

Even though she never pressured me to say anything about it, I told her that we absolutely would have brought Ball to her, but she's basically become unavailable. She works one day a week, starting at 3 pm, and then ONE Saturday a month. Otherwise she exclusively does animal surgery and dentistry. My problems were with the other main doctor there (and I couldn't tell Holly that, as the other doctor is not only her colleague, but her WIFE.) We needed someone who could see Ball ASAP, someone who wasn't half way across the metro area. St. Louis Park isn't the end of the world, but we were ALWAYS fighting highway traffic, even during the best of times. I feel badly about this, because everyone in this family secretly believes that Dr. Holly would have moved heaven and earth to find out what was wrong with Ms. Ball.

I need to remind myself that Dr. Holly saw all our previous cats, and none of them lived any longer than our current eldest cat, Ms. Piggy, who is easily closing on 18. Also, sometimes these things just hit like a storm and there's nothing to be done.

I'm glad she called, though. She's such a good person. Shawn and I did some calculations and we'd been seeing Dr. Holly exclusively for 29 years. Almost as long as we've been together, Shawn and I. (Shawn and I met in 1985; we started seeing Dr. Holly with our first cat, Artemis, in 1990.)

Other than that, it was a low-key Tuesday. [personal profile] naomikritzer came over for lunch and I fed her hot dish (as provided by the Randalls.) I'm always impressed by the range of conversation Naomi and I can have--everything from professional jealousy, mastectomies and reconstructive surgery, to Star Wars movies. I guess that's what it's like with a good friend.

The only other thing that's worth reporting is that Mason's PSAT scores (he took a practice practice test, as it were, in 10th grade) went public and now a bunch of colleges are emailing him, letting him know that, you know, when the time comes, they'd sure like to have him. That's fairly gratifying. I feel proud, even though the only thing I did was help prod Mason to prod his school into letting him take the test early.

So that's cool.

Spell-a-Day (Jan. 8) )
lydamorehouse: (??!!)
All I know is that it's 2019. I have no actual idea what day of the week it is. Wednesday is my best guess.

My family all went back to school and work. I stayed home with kitty, who is still with us, but it's unclear how long (more under the cut at the end.) I was extremely grateful when [personal profile] naomikritzer reached out to offer to bring lunch and chat. She brought some potato/leek soup that was left over from a New Year's Eve party that she'd gone to. I supplied some day-old French bread, and she also brought a spinach and cheese stuffed naan that needed to be rescued from a freezer that apparently stopped freezing and used up. All and all a lovely meal, made more lovely by the chance to chat with a dear friend about anything OTHER than a sick cat for several hours.

It is also "What Are You Reading" Wednesday, and I can report that I read another short story last night. "Sour Milk Girls" by Erin Roberts which I kind of hated. There's no hard and fast rule that stories have to have a happy ending to be satisfying. Lots of people will tell you that they sometimes feel that grim endings are more realistic, but what "Sour Milk Girls" felt like to me was "mean girls being mean, the end." There was a clever sort of word-building going on, but one of the main plot points (memories being wiped) was never explained in context of the world. What was the point of it? What did the people doing the wiping (institutionally, and then, later, individually) get out of it? What was the benefit? And, then it was just "ha, ha, we were mean."

Or, so it seemed to me.

Well, I will keep hunting. I have five slots I can fill in my nominations for the Nebula, and I only have three filled so far. There are lots and lots of eligible short stories out there.

I'm also revisiting Starhawk's Truth or Dare.; Encounters with Power, Authority, and Mystery, which is a book I tried to read when it came out in the late 1980s. I'm not sure how this type of book bills itself. It's not non-fiction, though it tries hard to be, with footnoted research and a lot of academic language. It's kind of like creative nonfiction, maybe? With a dash of memoir and a lot of poetry? Starhawk (a native St. Paulie!) is one of those people that a lot of pagans my age read back in the day. She's probably best known for Spiral Dance, which is a bit more of a how-to. Possibly my revisiting of Starhawk should have started there, because I'm finding Truth or Dare tough going. Reading it has made me think about how little has changed and how many revolutions are still needed.

When I need something lighter (or to pass the time at the vet's office), I've been SLOWLY making my way through the first Longmire book, The Cold Dish by Craig Johnson. Shawn and I really enjoyed watching "Longmire," and Shawn found a copy of this at on the library friends bookstore's free shelf.

Cat update (not good) )
lydamorehouse: (??!!)
Since I (hopefully) will have more folks stopping by here to check out fannish stuff, I will lead with the fact that I just finished watching the anime for Gaikotsu Shotenin Honda-san / Skill-faced Bookseller Honda (the link takes you to the review I did at MangaKast, my manga review blog.) I felt very 'meh' about this one, mostly because I'm not a huge fan of humor that depends on me finding typical nerd behaviors funny. I never much liked "The Big Bang Theory" for similar reasons.

This is not a universal problem I have, however. I rather enjoyed what I read of Watashi ga Motete Dousunda / Kiss Him, Not Me despite the problematic schtick of the TV trope 'beautiful all along' nerd-style. I think part of the difference is that I get the sense that in the case of Kiss Him, Not Me, there's an underlying... appreciation of geekdom? Like, the humor isn't only to point and say: LOOK AT THE WEIRDO BEING WEIRD. Instead, it's more of a gentle 'isn't it funny when...." with specific nerd habits. I have no problem laughing at myself or my community. I do it all the time, in fact. But, there's a subtle difference when it's done with an 'us' vibe, instead of a 'them' vibe.

I felt Skull-faced Bookseller Honda had a lot of 'them' vibes.

But, the anime is short (only 9 episodes), so you can decide for yourself. Or you could follow the link I provide in the review and read the two chapters of the manga that are online.

Possibly the best manga a read this week was Shimanami Tasogare by Kamatani Yuuki. It's an #ourvoices manga, as Kamatani-sensei is non-binary... and talk about an 'us' feeling, holy crap. The story is a coming out story of a boy who is outed by his browser history and a bunch of bullying, nosy high schoolers. The boy consequently considers suicide. He's saved from his attempt by the vision of a woman leaping out a window.... she invites him to a clubhouse for GLBTQIA+ folks and he finds his people. It's really a lovely story. I cried all the queer tears. I reviewed that one over at Mangakast, too, but this is basically all I said about it, because I really want people to go read that one for themselves.

So, that's my fannish news.

Meanwhile, in real life, I'm sipping tea that my friend [personal profile] naomikritzer brought back for me from China. She's recently returned from a trip to Taiwan to see our mutual friend [personal profile] jiawen who sent back stationary for me, which is very cute and which I plan to use right away! (Thanks, R!)  Naomi also gave me a gorgeous handmade notebook filled with handmade paper, which is almost too pretty to write in.  She also got me a cool bent metal sculpture that is, apparently, the Chinese character for the sounds my name makes (LIE-duh). And, as if that wasn't enough, she also brought me some fun candy to try and one of those funky little prizes you always see in anime that people get out of machines and are in round, plastic balls. 

So much wonderful stuff. 

And, more importantly I got to hear all the travel stories. I LOVE traveling, even though I can't afford to do a lot of it, internationally. My family and I are all about the road trips--particularly Mason and I, who have been known to spontaneously head off to small Minnesota towns to see statues of Vikings and whatnot.

I like traveling vicariously, too, so it was a wonderful afternoon for me.

Now, I think I'll just sip my tea and hop over to Tumblr to see what mayhem is happening there.
lydamorehouse: (renji has hair)
To be fair, the world is set-up for extroverts, but I'm such an extrovert that I think I get bonuses that even other extroverts don't.  

There's a coffee shop that I've been going to for years, Claddagh Coffee.  I don't even entirely remember how I found it, but it's on 7th, on the way home (if go that way, if you know what I mean,) from Shawn's work, the Minnesota Historical Society. Normally, within a few months of going to a coffee shop, I've learned most of the baristas names and more often than not have talked to the owner.  

I've been going to Claddagh long enough now that I know the names of my fellow regulars, too.  

So, today, I come in, and one of my fellow regulars, Tim, says, "Hey, Lyda, I brought in a print to show you." I'm thinking, 'A print? Like a piece of art?' but Tim has a great sense of humor and we've huddled together, close to his phone to watch videos, etc., so this isn't necessarily out of the ordinary for an interaction between us and I'm super-curious about what kind of art print Tim thought was worth bringing in for _me_ to see.

So, I say, "A print?"

Out of his pocket, Tim pulls out a 3-D printed HAND.  

I have never seen anything that's been 3-D printed before. It's really cool. He was particularly excited about this print because it was the first time he got the "clear" (it looked milky-white to me) resin to work. Apparently different types of resin have different melting points? He was happy to have figured out this one, at any rate. He said that the design for the hand is one that's downloadable (because I asked if he'd scanned the hand of anyone he knew), and is supposed to be able to hold your iPhone for you (though it didn't work terribly well, when he tried to demonstrate.)

Apparently Tim (who is this sort, which is why we've bonded in the past,) bought his son a 3-D printer kit and the two of them built the 3-D printer together.  Tim is also a mentor at his son's robotics and I secretly groaned when I heard that because the other thing I know about Tim is that he's an engineer who DESIGNED AIRPLANES (and maybe still does) for a living.  Meanwhile, one of the guys we have mentoring our Washington team is an investment banker.... who makes "future money."

At any rate, I thought that moment was very illustrative of my life as an extrovert. 
lydamorehouse: (writer??)
A colleague of mine, Gardner Dozois, posted a thought-provoking question on his Facebook feed: "If a time-traveling much younger version of yourself came to the door, would he or she be disappointed in the older you they found? Why? Or if they WOULDN'T be disappointed, again, why?"

I said that it would really depend on how much younger this younger version of me was.  My high school self would probably have been pretty surprised to discover that her older self was an out lesbian. Although maybe less so my senior year of high school, when I was rather religiously reading the Gay Comix I'd bought at the downtown head shop.  

Probably more shocking, however, might be to find my older self married and with a kid.

I NEVER imagined myself married.  

But, disappointed? I think not. I think my high school self would have DIED OF JOY to find out that I'd become a published science fiction/fantasy author.  In fact, I said, "I think my younger self would cheer me up."  I don't think my younger self would give any sh*ts that I wasn't currently publishing. I could just see her bouncing around on the porch saying "FOURTEEN?  I PUBLISHED FOURTEEN BOOKS??"  I'd probably invite her in and say, "Yeah, check out this bookshelf.  This is all you. You've been translated into Polish, German, and.... Look!!!  JAPANESE."  My younger self probably would have been like, "Japanese? Whatever.  What the hell is this weird art? Why are her eyes so big? But Polish! Wow! Grandma Morehouse could read this! And Grandpa could read the German ones!"

Then, she'd get to the Tate stuff and be like, "Romance?" and given me the skeptical side-eye, like 'am I really at the right future?' In fact, I'm very sure younger me would pull all the faces about romance.  I would just shake my head and say, "Dude. You have NO IDEA how romantic you are. And thank GOD you're performing heteronormativity now or I'd have no memories to draw on."

Then she would have rolled her eyes and said, "'Heteronormativity'? People in the future talk weird."

I'd be like, "You say 'gnarly' on a regular basis. UNIRONICALLY. Do. Not. Judge. Do you want to hear about how you MET Anne McCaffery or not?"

What about you? What would your past self say to you?
lydamorehouse: (crazy eyed Renji)
Today, in the mail, I got a thick envelope from someone I didn't know in Revere, MA. Most of my pen pals from the International Pen Friends (IPF) are, well, international... so I was curious what this thick envelope might contain. I opened it up and out came a veritable ton of what are called "Friendship Books" (FBs.)

I couldn't figure out how I'd been gifted with this "bounty," until I discovered that one of the FBs was started for me, by one of my German pen pals.

Friendship Books are hard to explain. Wikipedia has an article about them, but it doesn't entirely do them justice. The ones I've seen are small, a quarter of a sheet of paper in size. They're handmade, often very crudely--nothing more than colored paper, side-stapled together.  On the front is a person's name and address.  This little booklet is then sent on to pen pals, each of them writing their name and address in it, and passing it along to one of THEIR pen pals, almost like a chain letter, except the idea is to fill the booklet up with people interested in receiving new pen pals. Once the book is filled, it's sent back to the person whose name is on the front/top.

EXCEPT.

There's all these unspoken rules.  Sometimes people send FBs just to see how far they'll go around the world before they come back, so, if you're using the FB to find more pen pals, you have to examine each entry carefully. Some people will just sign their name and something like, "Waving from Cleveland Ohio, and passing on!" 

There are all these codes involved: SNNP (Sorry No New Pen Pals) or NPW (New Pen Pals Wanted) or LLW (Long Letter Writer) or AS (Answers Some), as opposed to AA (Answers All).  They will often include date of birth, because a lot of pen pal seekers want to converse only with people their age. They'll also list the languages they're comfortable writing in--which has been frustrating for me. I've been trying to land a Japanese pen pal, but the ONE I spotted in a FB only wanted pen pals in Korean.  (You may be scratching your head, but international pen pals often use correspondence as a way to practice/keep up on their English/foreign language skills.)  I also actually saw someone who listed, and I kid you not, Esperanto as one of the languages they'd correspond in.  People will include lists of interests: puppies! Unicorns! Heavy Metal music! (or, another one I saw from a different Japanese FBer "I love Jesus!")

But, so I got this huge pile and for the first time went through several of them looking for the words "FB and slam swappers needed" which meant that they were willing to accept FBs, because, honestly, I kind of hate the pressure of having a bunch laying around that I haven't sent out yet.  This is the other way in which these remind me of chain letters, honestly. I have this weird sense of "AH, I should do something with this immediately!"  Anyway, I managed to unload a bunch of them that way.

I have to admit to enjoying reading through these things, strange as they are.  When I was showing these to my friend Naomi today, I read one of the longer ones in which this person wanted to swap: "FBs, postcards, teabags, magnets, bookmarks, pocket letters, ATC, flip books, washi." And, suddenly we were like, "What are pocket letters??"

So we Googled it and found that pocket letters are a crafter's answer to pen palling. You thought this was about writing to people? NOPE. This is a f*cking art form!  Pocket letters are where you fill up a nine-pocket trading card protector with cute things, like stickers, tea bags, pictures, or whatever you like and then send them to someone who will send something similar to you. You collect them in a three-ring binder, kind of like scrapbooking for strangers.

It seems kind of cool.  I may have to try it.

I feel like if I go deep enough into this pen palling culture, I'll be ready to write an exposé for Vanity Fair or Teen Vogue.
lydamorehouse: (Default)
 Yes, I know it's discombobulate, but blame Bugs Bunny. I always say "discom-boob-ulate." It's funnier that way.

Speaking of preemptive explanations, I have decided that the Internet is a terrible parent. I've been on the "Innerwebs" since its inception. If, several years ago, you asked me if the internet is destroying communication, I would have laughed at you and called you an alarmist.  However, the thing that I'm noticing more and more as we get entire generations who have grown up communicating via text is a tendency to assume the worst of the OP (the original poster.) Today, for instance, I got a comment on one of my fics that was a perfectly reasonable response to an author's note that I'd written several years ago that seems, in retrospect, a bit tone-deaf regarding genderqueer/gender fluid folks. This person probably think they took a neutral tone, but it came off as "The thing you need to understand...", which made me want to knee-jerk with doubling-down and yelling "$%!@ OFF."

Luckily, while I wrote a bit of that initial reaction in reply, I'm used to the fact that most of my fic readers are 12 (like, for real).  So, I try not to start with the swears. I try to say, "thank you for the information" and go from there.  Luckily, I also thought to re-read my intro and spotted WHY this person thought I was either a bigot or a moron.  THEN, I was able to go back and write, "Ah-ha! I get your point now, I will fix this so I don't look like a raging moron/bigot." 

And, yeah, I get that *this* is on me from the start. It's not the offended person's responsibility to treat *me* with respect that I don't seem to deserve. In fact, they mostly did.  

It's just that it really strikes me that, at least, for myself, going forward, I would like to pledge to recognize that even intelligent, wanting-to-do-right-by-everyone people like myself have this knee-jerk reaction to being "called out." For myself, so long as the person on the other end has not made it super clear that they are a NAZI in need of punching, I'm going to start with the expectation that the mistake was honest and maybe just soften my initial blow with something as simple as, "I don't know when you wrote this fic, but..." or "Maybe you already know this, but your introduction makes it seem like maybe you don't..."?  

I guess my point is, is that the internet did not teach us how to have a constructive argument.

You *can* have CONSTRUCTIVE arguments on the internet, though.  I've had, actually, a number of amazing, eye-opening arguments on the internet, specifically on AO3 over mistakes I've made in my fics. I learned, the hard way (by hurting someone), why trigger warnings are actually important. In those arguments, I had to do a lot of hard work. I had to let go of my ego and really listen and that's super-hard to do when you feel massively guilty. I also managed to have a conversation on Facebook about women in science fiction without having to go nuclear on the trolls. It can be done. It just takes a lot more commitment than we're used to giving anyone on the internet.

Anyway, truth is, I'm writing about this, because I'm avoiding a bunch of other writing I really need to either do or decide NOT to do.  
lydamorehouse: (Renji 3/4ths profile)
 I'm just plain, ol' tuckered out right now.  Another wet, cloudy, drizzly day.  We finished up the rummage sale and netted Mason's team $95.00.  Not bad, actually, and about what I'd secretly hoped to make. Between that and a few other last minute donations to the GoFund me from a couple of my friends, we added an extra three hundred some bucks!  Hopefully, this will mean less money worries for the Team.

The sale was much slower today, despite the fact that the weather was actually quite a bit nicer.  I think this is a Saturday vs. Sunday thing. I know that when Shawn and I do rummaging we like to do it on Saturdays.  Sundays, particularly rainy ones, are for being curled up on the couch with a good book.  

We had a few humorous interactions with strangers who came to the sale.  One was a set of grandparents who were entertaining the kids for the weekend, it sounded like.  Apparently, after church they traditionally go rummaging and so this time brought the two (amazingly well behaved, if indecisive) kids along. They stopped at our sale specifically hunting for a "digger" for the young man. Apparently, at the previous sale the young lady had gotten a treat and now it was the young man's turn.  He reminded me of Mason at that age, which I would guess to be about three.  But, he was very articulate, though the hilarity ensued when grandma became very insistent that since our bucket was labeled "4 for a Quarter" the two kids had to chose four, and ONLY four, toys. We, alas, had no diggers, but there were plenty of trucks.  The young fellow first wanted the dumper, then didn't, then grandma finally sort of picked something for him so they could get in the car, but then, hilariously, kept coming back and forth to the bin trying to appease the kid.  It cracked me up. Finally the problem was solved by me explaining that, honestly, as long as it was okay with her, the kids could have all the trucks, no extra cost.  I explained that what we didn't sell was going to GoodWill, anyway.  She finally decided this was a good deal and took all three trucks.

The other was the two women (maybe a mother and daughter, but possibly just two good friends, with one slightly older than the other) who checked out all our board games and ended up buying almost twenty dollars worth of things (which at our sale is actually a LOT.) They were funny because they seemed seriously impressed that we "knew our merchandise." I wanted to know where they were shopping previously that people didn't really know what they were selling, but I think they were really surprised that we'd at least tried all our odd board games at least once.  I think I liked them because they reminded me of who Shawn and I are when we're out sale-ing.  We chat pleasantly between ourselves and the sellers and generally talk about all the merchandise. 

One woman came by specifically looking for bookshelves (I hear ya, sister!) but left with another nice piece of furniture.  

Then there was the big haul to GoodWill. Lisa and Shawn did most of the packing up, while I went and pulled up signs. By the time I came back with the car, they were mostly ready for me to jam everything into the trunk and backseat.  We managed to haul it all in one load because Lisa filled up her minivan as well.  I can't believe we finally got all that junk out of the house!  

We only came back with a small bag of LEGOs for Mason and a stool for Shawn to try to use with the loom.  She's got one now, of course, but since she hurt her back, she's been specifically looking for something that might offer a bit more back support. We're hoping that this one from Lisa will do the trick! Fingers crossed.

The last things I have to do before Mason leaves is get him some cash for food in Anaheim.  Shawn is going to start packing his bag a bit tonight, but we're all so wiped out that she'll probably do the lion's share of it tomorrow.  We've already done our bookstore run so that Mason will have new books to bring along for the trip. I hope that Mason remembers to take lots of pictures. Last time he did a big trip like this he actually took notes of things he wanted to remember to tell us about on his iPad. I hope he thinks to do that again. 

Ja ne! 

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