Category Archives: this is my life

Arachnophobia

I don’t like bugs. But there’s just something about spiders that give me an extra dose of the willies. Logically I know that there’s a place for them on this earth. My parents are constantly preaching to me, as I’m shrieking down the house, that blah, blah, food chain, blah, blah, ecosystem, blah. But that is no comfort when I’m paralyzed by fear at a spider on the wall.

cute_spider

The worst arachnid, in my opinion, has to be the shower spider. There is nothing worse than disrobing in the morning, when you’re still half asleep, and draw back the shower curtain to find one (or more!) of the little vermin waiting for you in the shower. My coworker says car spiders are worse, but I maintain that at least in the car, you have a layer of protection between you and the spider… your clothes. Getting ready to step into the shower? No such protection. I always have to put on a towel before attempting to kill it, because I’m always afraid it’ll jump at me and then it will be on my skin. Ewwww.

Though a case can be made for the above-the-bed spider being the worst. You know you have to kill it because it might fall into your bed. But if you try to swat it, you might kill it, but it’ll still fall into your bed. However, I am too short to be able to reach it with a tissue, even standing on said bed. So swatting is the only option, followed by an hours-long search to either find its corpse or kill the survivor.

I confronted one of the dreaded shower spiders the other morning, and in my zeal to kill it, I apparently made too much noise. My dad came up to make sure I was OK. Apparently, it sounded like I had fallen in the shower. No, Dad. I’m OK. Just spider-killin’.

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Filed under messed up me, stuff and nonsense, this is my life, totally random topic

I’m not dead. (Not yet.)

So, I haven’t updated this in…. months. I haven’t even been busy. I’ve just been boring. Story of my life.

The Christmas season is upon us. When did that happen? Though I think I frittered away August, September and October waiting for my doll convention to arrive. (You can find the recaps of that over on Shelf Life.) As my nephew would say, it seemed like it was “taking for-ever” for the Wilde Halloween Convention to arrive. But it did and Dad and I went and it was a blast. But that’s really the only news I have since my last post at the end of July.

charlie-brown-christmas-tree

I haven’t even read any good books lately! It seems like, after I gorged myself on young adult dystopian and fantasy novels over the summer, I lost my appetite for reading. Since August, I’ve read exactly one book. ONE! I AM SO ASHAMED. I had a goal of reading 42 books this year, but I’m not even going to come close. I did, however, finally buy Veronica Roth’s Allegiant, and am about a quarter of the way through it at the mo’. I did pick up some new reads during Amazon’s Black Friday/Cyber Monday sale, so maybe I’ll stop being a lazy ass and pick up a book this month.

I’ve been selling a lot of dolls on eBay and other places, but I still seem to collect more than I sell. I have half a dozen dolls still in their boxes because I’ve nowhere to put them at the moment. However, I did have a rather rotten experience today on eBay. I have a doll up for a Buy It Now/Best Offer. Now, I suppose my mistake was not putting in an automatic decline for low-ball offers. I got one such today and made a counter offer… something that’s been done to me many times. Sometimes I accept, sometimes I don’t. It’s all good. But after I countered, the potential buyer sent me a rather rude little email saying how I must not want to sell the doll. No… I want to sell the doll, but not at an unacceptably low offer. Instead of arguing with the little upstart, I just blocked her from bidding altogether. Wouldn’t want to do business with someone like that anyway.

And that’s it for my update. Buying/selling dolls, not-reading and trying to get ready for Christmas. So… how y’all been? 🙂

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Getting ready for convention

Image

Tonner’s Antoinette in spring time.

Next week, my dad and I will be attending the 2013 Tonner Doll Convention in Lombard, IL. I signed up for it in January, and the time has gone quickly by until the convention is almost upon us.

I am way beyond excited, but at the same time, very anxious about it at the same time. We’re driving from our house in Tennessee, all the way up to Chicago, IL. That’s at least a 10-hour drive. We’ll be leaving at 4 a.m. next Wednesday.

There’s always so much to do to get ready for trips like this. What to wear, what to take… I’m a nervous wreck just trying to get ready. I don’t even have my suitcase out… am not even sure where they are (probably in the attic). I am sure I will be spending the majority of next weekend just getting ready to go.

This isn’t my first doll convention. I’ve been to one other, this past October, but it will be the first time I enter a competition piece. Not in any of the doll categories… can’t sew to save my life, but in the craft category. I did a cross stitch piece I designed myself. It’s approximately 8×6 and took over a month to complete. I have no illusions of winning anything, I just wanted to participate.

I wanted to enter the photography category, but the weather has not been cooperative this month. Hopefully I can squeeze in a quick shoot sometime this week in between rain showers. Otherwise, I’ll have to forego entering. I waited so late because I wanted spring to arrive to take some outdoor shots. Indoor shots never look as good.

Wish us luck in traveling… that’s something else I have to do, print out driving directions! Maybe I should start making a list of everything that needs to be done before we leave. 😀

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Learning how to dine solo

ImageDinners are a family affair for me. Unless it’s an extremely rare occasion where I eat out with friends, I eat dinner with my parents every night, whether we go out or stay in for one of Dad’s delicious, home-cooked meals. But ever since my nephew was born five years ago, my parents have been traveling to Chattanooga once or twice a month to stay with my brother and his family, leaving me to my own devices when it comes to dinner.

Usually I would dig into the fridge for leftovers or pop something in the microwave to eat, as I am too dangerous to be let loose with the stove. Other times I would pick something up from a local restaurant and take it home. But lately, I’ve taken to eating out alone, something I would have been horrified to do just months ago.

The very thought of eating out alone, especially in a sit-down restaurant, used to cause my rotten social anxiety to soar. What would people think if they saw me eating solo? Would they pity me for not having anyone to eat with? Would they think I was some spinster who couldn’t get a date? Well, why that last one may have a ring of truth to it, I decided one night that I really didn’t care what people thought of seeing me alone in a restaurant, so I picked up a magazine and took myself on a date to a local eatery.

Talk about a nerve-racking experience. The first time I ate out alone, I was so nervous, I sat myself in the very back of the restaurant, hoping no one would notice me. I kept my eyes glued to the magazine I had brought, not daring to look up, afraid of people staring at me. Despite the fact that I had told myself I didn’t care what people thought, I lacked the confidence of believing it. I ate as quickly as I could and left as soon as possible.

I didn’t think I would be able to do that again, but the next time my parents went to Chattanooga, I decided to try.

The second time was easier. The hostess just gave me a friendly smile when I told her, “It’s just me tonight.” I went armed with a book again, but found myself so engrossed in my delicious dinner, I barely looked at. This time I raised my eyes and did a little “people watching” of my own. Nobody seemed to notice me all by myself, aside from my waitress who was extremely friendly and charming. Success!

This past weekend, I ventured out by myself for the third time, this time to a fast-food joint. I took my tray to a table, deliberately not choosing one in the back. I had a magazine with me again, but I didn’t touch it. Instead, I just sat by myself, by the window, and watched the world outside while I ate. I was halfway through my meal when I noticed a man sitting two tables away eating by himself. And not long after, another lone woman entered the restaurant, taking her food to the back of the dining area. I had to smile. I was not alone in being alone.

A Google search yielded some helpful hints on dining alone.

1. If you’re in the mood for conversation, ask to be seated at the bar or counter if available. If there’s not one available, go at off-peak times and spark a conversation with your server.

2. If talking to strangers isn’t your thing, bring a book or magazine.

3. Take along your social network. You’re never really alone if your online friends are along for the ride.

4. Ask for the check even if you aren’t finished eating. This will cut down on the time you must sit alone at the table after you are through.

5. Have confidence in yourself. Eating alone should be enjoyable, not something to be afraid of.

While I will probably always have that burst of social jitters before stepping into a restaurant alone, I know now that it is something I can do. And if you happen to see me out and about myself, stop by and say hi. Even if I have a book or magazine with me, I always enjoy a friendly conversation.

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Filed under published writing, this is my life

What’s in a name?

ImageA few weeks ago, the new lady at work called me “Beth.” This is not the first time I’ve been called “Beth.” The mother of a friend of mine from high school always insisted on calling me “Beth” and not once in 3 years did she ever learn that my name was Caroline.

I don’t know what it is about me that screams “Beth.” I don’t think I look like a Beth. Beth isn’t even close to Caroline. Usually, people will mispronounce my name as Carolyn. My boss has my name spelled Carolyn on her email list (and I’ve worked here for 10 years, mind.) Sometimes I’ll get Catherine. I remember back in middle school, when giving our names for class pictures, the guy wrote down “Catherine Shelby,” neither of which is correct.

Once I got a Mary. I think it was a bad phone connection that time. Still, Mary from Caroline? Well, it’s closer than Beth.

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Parting of the ways

I have a weird schedule when it comes to my hair. I only see my hairdresser about once a year. I know this would send most of my lady friends into absolute shock, but it’s true. I visit my hairdresser every year around November to have my hair whacked off.

Before.

After.

I like having long hair in the summer and short hair in the winter. This may sound paradoxical, but there is method to my madness. In hot weather, I can’t stand having hair on the back of my neck, so it has to be long enough to put into a ponytail. By the time October/November rolls around, I am so sick of fighting with the tangles every morning, I make an appointment to chop it all off. I have warm scarves I use to keep the chill off my neck in winter.

It may sound topsy-turvy to you, but I’ve got my hair down to a science.

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Getting back to this blogging business

It’s been almost a year since I updated this thing. Epic fail on my part. Sorry. I’ve been dealing with some stuff this year, namely being diagnosed with depression and anxiety disorder. But I’m trying to get back into writing and blogging. Which is why instead of just one blog, I know have five. I know, I know… overkill. But they all do serve different purposes, so I don’t clog up this blog with other crap.

  • Small Town Girl — This is still my main blog, which I will try to update more often, usually with all things geekery, general bitching and whining and books. Not necessarily in that order. Hopefully there will be more geekery and books than bitching and whining.
  • Crafty Companion — I decided my geek craft needed its own blog. It’s tied into my Etsy shop. I’ll be giving sneak peeks of upcoming works in progress, commentary on new patterns and, on occasion, free patterns.
  • Boomerang Child — This is my depression/I’m-36-and-still-live-with-my-parents blog. This one won’t be updated too often because my depression is still trying to become more comfortable talking about. But I’ll also be blogging about what it’s like to live with your parents as an adult. (If I ever decide to grow up, that is.)
  • Shelf Life — My doll blog! I’ll be posting mostly photos and reviews of my doll collection over there.
  • Color of My Dreams — Ever since I started taking my fun-time meds, my dreams have been vivid and quite memorable. Often I’ll get a whole story in one night. I’m not looking to interpret anything or wondering what the hell my sub-conscience is doing, just writing down the memorable dreams.

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