Sunday, January 31, 2010

Sunday morning waking up

Dear Sunday morning,

Why am I up at 7:00 a.m for no reason?



Dear wedding dress,

I don't think I like you. You just don't fit right. Probably, this makes me psycho.



Dear ukulele,

I'm sorry I have not practiced you much this week. I guess I am lazy.



Dear Taylor Lautner,

Please stop being good-looking. It creeps me out that I find you attractive.


Thursday, January 28, 2010

"She's only ten!"

Dear Internets,

I was reading STFU Parents (which has become my third favorite thing in the world, after puppies and unicorns) and came across this post.

My MeanGrandma (yes, I saw the world in black and white as an 11-year-old) totally did the same thing to me. Except since there was no Facebook when I was 11, my grandmother announced the arrival of my first period by calling everyone in her prayer group while I sat red-faced in the next room.

Technologies may come and go, but oversharing about your children and grandchildren is timeless.

Happy Thursday.


Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Wednesday Wedding Weecap: Pores Edition

Dear Internets,

I met this really lovely former wedding planner from Brazil yesterday. She was hilarious and sweet, but I think I scared her to death.

Nice lady: Oh, your wedding is exactly two months away from today! How wonderful!
Jane: Oh wow, you're right! I hadn't realized!
NL: What a very special time. What are your colors?
Jane: Uh... Well, I think my sister is taking care of all of that.
NL: Your... sister?
Jane: She is really creative with that sort of thing.
NL: Ahh... O...K.... Well, who will be doing your makeup?
Jane: Um... Probably me..?
NL: OH! But you must have someone to help you with [waves hand in front of her nose in giant circular motion] the pores? You must get the facials!


In other news, my plans to start eating healthier and working out before the wedding were postponed. Instead, I battered and fried some homemade French fries. Some of them were sweet potato fries, though, so they count as health food. Since my dress has already been altered, now is probably not the time to start binge eating.


I don't think my large pores have anything to do with my love for frying things.


I ordered different shoes. They are pink and strappy and have 4.5 inch heels. Yes, I realize they are ridiculous. They may get returned. If I keep them, I will likely get some pink Converse to wear at the reception so that I don't break my neck.


We found a photographer we think we're really really going to like. (Thanks for the tip, Elizabeth!)


We broke down and registered. We didn't put much on there - mostly just a few pots and pans to replace our old scary scuffed Teflon pans. I did register for reusable cupcake baking cups.


And that is about it, I think. Do you have any exciting news Internets? What is the status of your pores?


Tuesday, January 26, 2010

I ramble

Dear eyebrows,

Please stop being crazy and weird. I have no idea what to do with you.



Dear appetite,

Why do I feel like eating myself out of house and home all the time? Should I start drinking green tea? Quit eating sugar? Please let me know before I bankrupt myself.



Dear Girl Scout cookies (Caramel deLites in particular),

Yum. Yum yum yum.



Dear self,

Please stop being so lazy and unmotivated. Yes, it's often chilly outside. Yes, cedar fever is the devil. But sometimes you just have to suck it up.


Saturday, January 23, 2010

Spammy Spam

Dear Internets,

I've been getting a lot of spam comments lately, so I'm switching back to using word verification for a while. I hope this won't be too annoying for anyone.


Thursday, January 21, 2010

The Reverend

Dear Internets,

Did I tell you that I got ordained? I could have sworn that I had, but come to think of it, it was just a very realistic dream. (About blogging. Awesome. At least you know that even my subconscious loves you Internets.)

I'm going to officiate at my friends Aaron & Lo's wedding in October.

Reverend Jane

Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Wednesday Wedding Weecap (or why I never get anything done)

Alternative Title I: The dilettante's guide to wedding invitations
Alternative Title II: I sure hope no prospective employers ever read this...
Dear Internets,

I've been feeling guilty about procrastinating about doing our wedding invitations, so I decided to just do them. I got some of the print your own invitations (I know you hate those, Internets, but that's because you're all graphic designers and/or millionaires), and the process seemed like it would be pretty straightforward:
  1. Collect addresses for guests
  2. Print invitations
  3. Address envelopes
  4. Update wedding website to reflect new information
  5. Affix postage to envelopes
  6. Drop invitations in the mail
In reality, the process has gone more like this:
  1. Email friends and family members for their addresses
  2. Assure friends and families that I just need their addresses because I have some chain letters I need to get out
  3. Ask Achilles for his addresses
  4. Ask Achilles for his addresses (again)
  5. Look up possible invitation wording
  6. Second, third, and fourth guess wording decision
  7. Decide that inviting people places in the third person is just going to sound weird no matter what
  8. Print invitations
  9. Ask Achilles for his addresses again. Feel like a nag
  10. Begin hand addressing envelopes
  11. Decide hand addressed envelopes look awful
  12. Print addresses on envelopes
  13. Tell Achilles he's on his own for his invitations
  14. Go to post office near house to buy stamps. Find that the only stamps they sell in the denomination we need have creepy dolphins on them
  15. Drive to main post office across town on MLK Day. Find that post office no longer has stamp vending machines
  16. Decide to use vintage postage stamps instead of creepy dolphin stamps
  17. Spend far too much time on eBay looking at vintage postage stamps
  18. Second guess decision to use vintage stamps
  19. Order them anyway, figuring it will give Achilles time to get me his addresses
  20. Decide to update wedding website while waiting for stamps
Notice how "update wedding website" just took up one little number in the first scenario? Here's how it really went:
  1. Correct date, time, and location information on website
  2. Decide that I'd really like people to be able to RSVP and request songs for the reception through the website
  3. Research options for RSVP widgets
  4. Discover that most existing options are crappy and/or seem to be phishing for guests' personal information
  5. Decide to use Google Forms so that everything will be conveniently stored in a Google spreadsheet once the guests input their information
  6. Realize that Google Forms doesn't really let you modify the form they give you
  7. Find a way to hack the form so that it doesn't look so fugly
  8. Realize that after people RSVP, they will be sent to a website to create their own Google Forms rather than back to the wedding website
  9. Read Google forums for possible solutions. See that this is a "known issue that will be corrected in a future update."
  10. Seethe
  11. Realize that if I knew how to write JavaScript code, I could keep people from being redirected to the external website
  12. Learn enough JavaScript to fix the form
  13. After 946 tries, finally get JavaScript working correctly
  14. Realize that people won't be able to RSVP online at all if they have JavaScript disabled
  15. Decide that this doesn't really matter for a group of 20-30 people anyway
  16. Realize that I will probably go back and fix the form so that it works with or without JavaScript because I'm anal
  17. Decide that it is time to start drinking
This is why I never get anything done, Internets. I am like the kid from those Family Circus dotted line comics. Remember those?

Oh well. I will survive. The invitations don't have to go out for two weeks anyway, and as long as I get Achilles's addresses (COUGH COUGH), we should meet that deadline easily.

But seriously. Sometimes the extent of my distractibility frightens me.


Monday, January 18, 2010

Happy Monday, etc.

Dear Internets,

Happy MLK Day! Since I have the day off, I thought I'd list the top things I've been procrastinating about, despite having enough time to do most of them.
  1. Wedding invitations. I'm not even hand addressing most of them (gasp!). I'm just that lazy.
  2. Filing my income taxes. I usually try to get them done before the end of January so that I don't misplace all my paperwork. I'm about 50% done, though, so I guess this one isn't so bad.
  3. Looking at work stuff so that I can figure out what I should do when I go back to work tomorrow. But that's what tomorrow morning is for, right?
  4. Finishing up the painting/touch-up in the bathroom and living room. I really don't want to put on my painting clothes and/or get messy.
  5. 30 Day Shred. I'd rather not get sweaty either.
The top things I've accomplished?
  1. Perusal of unused vintage postage stamps on eBay.
  2. Setting the DVR to record various bad television show marathons.
  3. The rounding up of several friends for dinner.
I think I did rather well, actually.


P.S. Anyone know of a good, relatively inexpensive wedding photographer who will be in or around Austin in late March? I have had two cancel on me in the past two weeks.

Thursday, January 14, 2010

#17. Also known as: Yikes!

Dear Jane,

Thank you for registering for Comedy Gym. Please bring your printed receipt to your first class.

Thank you,
Informal Classes


Holy poodles, Internets. I have registered for a stand up comedy class. A class that will culminate in performances at a local comedy club.

What have I gotten myself into??


Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Dollars and daydreams

Dear Internets,

I realized I was unclear on one of my 30 Before 30 goals:

#28 complete savings vs. lottery experiment.

Like most people, I enjoy imagining what I'd do if I won the lottery. However, like a lot of people, I realize that I'm much better off putting the money I would spend playing the lottery into an interest-bearing savings account. My parents, math teachers, and countless personal finance bloggers have drilled this into my head. The logical side of my brain understands and agrees.

However, while I may understand (and embrace) logic, part of me has always been a dreamer. I *want* to imagine what would happen if I hit it big. My fanciful side insists that $1 isn't much at all to spend on a dream. My frugal side firmly disagrees.

Several years ago, I came up with a little "experiment" (albeit a totally unscientific one) that would allow both sides of my brain to feel comfortable playing the lottery. For a year, I'd buy one lottery ticket a week, and put the equivalent amount into an online savings account. At the end of the year, I'd compare the results. Whatever I had in my savings account could be spent on whatever I'd buy if I won that amount of money playing the lottery. (Although frankly, I'd probably put the money into savings. Darn you, logical brain!) However, until this year, I'd never actually put the plan into action.

So far, the experiment has been fun. That moment before I scratch off the ticket is as full of possibility and anticipation as the first day of school. Better yet, the fact that I rarely win even a dollar is softened a bit by the knowledge that I'm putting a dollar into savings. (I probably would have otherwise spent the $2 on a cherry limeade at Sonic.)

It's a silly thing to do, I guess, but it has been fun.

Semi-current totals (I forgot to buy tickets over the holidays, so I need to catch up):
Savings - $35.16
Lotto - $24

Yours ridiculously,

Friday, January 8, 2010

30 Before 30

Dear Internets,

I've discovered that the best time to blog is when I'm procrastinating about doing other things. I may have discovered my new secret formula to regular blogging!

I'm turning 30 in about eleven months. Every year for the past few years, I've made a list of 26 things to do before I turn 26, 27 before 27, etc. A week or so after my 29th birthday, I made a list of 30 things I'd like to do in the next year. While my list this year doesn't contain only things that I would consider Important Life Goals or anything (and several are things I've done before) I did decide to push myself a little more with my goals this year.

30 before 30
  1. meet 30 new people (I'm kind of an introvert)
  2. read 30 (non-self help) books
  3. watch 30 of the IMDB Top 250 films
  4. get married (hopefully this one won't be too hard) :)
  5. travel outside the country
  6. run a half marathon
  7. launch an Etsy shop
  8. try 30 new foods
  9. save $5000 (after IRA and retirement contributions)
  10. volunteer at least 30 hours of my time
  11. every 3 months, donate 30 items to Goodwill or Salvation Army
  12. sell 30 items on Craigslist or Ebay
  13. take a language class
  14. learn to sew
  15. redo floors in living room (I promise this was on my list before the remodel was planned)
  16. be able to do 30 military style push-ups
  17. take a stand-up or improv class and perform in front of an audience
  18. try 30 new recipes
  19. go on a road trip
  20. win a contest of some kind (this is my favorite, because it's so open-ended)
  21. take a dance class
  22. go to the dentist (twice)
  23. pay off student loans
  24. learn to make a daisy chain (Achilles told me there's some sort of dirty meaning to this, but I just want to string flowers together.)(Also, boys are gross.)
  25. learn to play 30 songs on the ukulele (this was originally one song, but I've already learned about 5, so I decided to increase my goal)
  26. learn to drive a stick shift
  27. attend 30 yoga classes
  28. complete savings vs. lottery experiment
  29. make a list of the top 30 things I'm most happy to have already crossed off my bucket list
  30. skip at least one item on this list
I figure I'll update on these goals in groups (adventurousness, travel, creative, health, financial, inspired by watching too many episodes of Hoarders, etc.) What do you think? I'm I being too aggressive? Not aggressive enough? What are your big goals for the next year?


Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Wednesday Wedding Weecap version 2.1

Dear Internets,

Of the blog posts I have written in my head but not actually typed out on virtual paper, there are three that both you and I agree should be written sooner rather than later:
  1. Living room renovation
  2. My 30 before 30 list
  3. What the heck is going on with Achilles and my wedding
The order that I will post these updates comes down to laziness and disorganization on my part. I forgot to take "before" pictures of the living room (and I'm pretty sure I accidentally threw away the non-digital ones my dad took a couple of years ago) so I want to track some down before I post about the renovations. And I left my 30 before 30 list at home, and my memory is not what it used to be. So. The wedding.

Sigh. The wedding. I think what happened with the wedding plans is best explained by this three act play.

Achilles and Jane Lose Their Damn Minds

ACT I: Newly Engaged!

Scene 1

Jane: Yay! Fun! I shall start a blog about this!
Achilles: Yay! I shall start researching our options for food!
Jane and Achilles' families and friends: Yay! We shall be supportive of whatever you decide!

ACT II: The wedding planning begins...

Scene 1
Jane: I would like a small, fairly non-traditional ceremony at Zilker Clubhouse. I would like delicious food, good music, our closest friends and family, and a lighthearted atmosphere. I'd like to avoid as many weird sexist traditions and random extra crap that gets forced on people as possible.
Achilles: I would like the same things. I would also like to avoid depleting our savings or going into debt over this.
Jane: You read my mind.

Scene 2
Jane's sister:
What kind of centerpieces are you having? I emailed you a bunch of links.
Jane: ...centerpieces? I was just thinking we'd have my friend LB (the wedding florist) put some vases with gerbera daisies out or something. But I guess centerpieces might be nice.
Jane's mom: Have you told your father that you're not having him walk you down the aisle? You need to tell him. I'm not going to be the one who breaks the news.
Jane: Aisle? We don't really want to have an aisle...
Jane's mom & sister: O...k... but how would that even work?
Jane: I have no clue.

Scene 3
Jane's neurotic side comes out while trying on wedding dresses. She has no idea what she wants. She knows this isn't important but can't stop thinking about it. Jane is deeply ashamed of herself.

Scene 4
Achilles' mom:
What have you guys planned so far?
Jane: Well, we were thinking of having fancy pizza, and cupcakes instead of a cake. And we're thinking of having some sort of appetizers so that people don't have to wait until after the ceremony to eat.
Achilles' mom: That sounds... cute.
Achilles' uncle (who has never had a conversation with Jane until this point): Pizza? For a wedding? Are you guys just trying to be cheap or something?
Jane: No... It's not the money... We just both really love pizza and thought it would be fun.
Achilles' uncle: Pizza just doesn't seem like wedding food to me. Have you ever thought about deep frying turkeys instead?
Jane: [looks around for Achilles, who is avoiding eye contact and inching toward the door] Uhh...
Jane (to self): What does a panic attack feel like?
Jane and Achilles: We don't think we want to register for gifts. We have more than we need. If people feel moved to give us a gift of their choosing, that's great. If not, that's wonderful too.
Achilles' family: You HAVE to register. You should do one of those honeymoon registries. Then you don't have to worry about getting stuff you can't use.
Jane's family: Honeymoon registries are tacky. Register at Williams & Sonoma. Then you'll get NICE stuff.
Jane and Achilles: But... the "stuff" isn't the point.

Scene 5
Jane, on phone:
You charge HOW much for chair rentals?

Scene 6
Achilles, on phone: Do you have any pizzas that DON'T have goat cheese or salmon on them?

Scene 7
Photographer: Look at me! I can vanish into thin air and leave no trace! Is it magic... or is it an illusion?

ACT III: And now for something completely different...

Scene 1
Jane thinks about the wedding. Jane has her first ever panic attack. Rinse, repeat. Jane stops thinking about the wedding.

Scene 2
Jane: I don't think I can do this. Can we just fly to Puerto Rico and get married on the beach?
Achilles: That would break my grandmother's heart.
Jane: What if we just got married at the courthouse and then took our families out to dinner? Would that be OK with your grandma?
Achilles: Actually... yes.
Jane: I think that's what I want to do.
Achilles: Me too.

Scene 3
Jane's officemate: The courthouse? How Carrie Bradshaw of you!!
Jane: It's not... like that.
Jane (to self): I'm not Carrie, anyway. If I'm anyone, I'm Liz Lemon - the lady who watches the show at home.

Scene 4
Achilles' mom and dad:
Why don't you just save yourself a step and get married at the restaurant?
Jane & Achilles: That sounds like a really good idea, actually.
Jane's Family: Why do you insist on crushing everyone's dreams and breaking our hearts?

--------FIN.... For now----

So, Internets, that's where we are. My family is annoyed with me. My sister isn't really speaking to me, and my mom actually took Achilles aside at Christmas to try to give him a guilt trip about how disappointed she is. I am no longer getting chest pain, though, so I think we have a winner.

Questions? Thoughts? I welcome all comments on this, even anonymous mean ones.


P.S. Since there's not really much of a wedding to plan anymore, I will probably move my Distracted Wedding posts over here and delete that blog at some point. It has some bad juju attached to it.

Monday, January 4, 2010

Sometimes I do things

Dear Internets,

I decided that instead of whining about all the things I didn't accomplish over the holiday break, I'd list some of the things I did:
  • Catch up on all the episodes of this season of Hoarders
  • Patch several holes in the drywall in the bathroom (and one in the kitchen)
  • With Achilles, repainted and redid the flooring in the living room
  • Invented awesome 3D cookie cutters (well, technically they'd been invented before, but I came up with the idea on my own. More on the cookie cutters later.)
  • Watch an entire season of Dexter and two seasons of 30 Rock
  • Finish knitting a scarf for my mom for Christmas
Um. That's about it. Unfortunately, while it (maybe?) sounds like a lot, I only accomplished these things because I was procrastinating about things I should have been doing instead, including updating this blog.

Which brings me to this: I know I've left a lot of holes in my blogging recently, but I'm not sure which (if any) of those holes anyone is actually curious to hear about. Wedding plans? 30 before 30? Remodeling? Something else that has slipped my mind?

Let me know, and I'll do my best to update you guys.


Sunday, January 3, 2010

Although we go... to the end of the vacation road...

Dear Work,

Why do I have to go back to you tomorrow? I'm just not ready. I'm glad to have you, really, it's just that I *really* got used to being on vacation. I went back to Job #2 yesterday, and that was fine, so my return to you will probably be fine too. Right? Right?



Dear Michael Cera,

I like love have adored for years and years the song that's playing in the trailer for your new movie. I could recommend a few Old 97's songs that would be great in an Arrested Development movie.

I'm just sayin.



Dear Condo,

If you could magically restore yourself to pre-renovation project cleanliness/organization levels, that would be great.



Dear Self,

What happened to eating healthier and exercising over the winter break? Shame on you (and those delicious chocolate candy pretzels).

Yours shamefully,