Friday, July 29, 2016

Happy Birthday Harry Potter (This post is Gif-licious)

Sunday is Harry Potter's birthday.

Why should a 41 year old woman care?
Because I am a HUGE Harry Potter fan.  And I'll publicly admit it!!

My story started when I was in grad school.  My mother was working in an elementary school library when the first three books came out (they came out all at once, or in quick succession here, if I remember).  I tried in vain to get the books from the public library.  Once day my mother's boss, the lovely librarian, asked her how fast I could read the new Harry Potter books she had just received.  The first three books.  I was all over that!
Two days.  It only took 2 days!

I remember standing in line with my friends for the midnight to pick up the Order of the Phoenix.  When then went to a Denny's, sat in a booth and read.  Grown Women.  In our 20's.  Reading at a Denny's at 2am.
Why do I love Harry Potter?

Harry Potter exists in a world that isn't perfect.  

I mean... there was a mass murderer...  That terrorized society not once, but twice.  And the second time, the news was kept from the people and hushed up in the press.
And then there was the evil that wore a face of respectability and order.  The evil that we all know.  The evil that touches ordinary lives.
(That bitch is scary!  Even more so, because we all know people like her!)

But even in all of this, there is light.  There is spells that feed on hope and happiness that conquer the darkness.
This is a world where travelling happens in a thought.  Where magic can help with housework, travel, cooking and every day tasks.  Where a game like Quiddich can exist!
Where money transactions happen in coins.  There a Rubber Duck is a mystery.  It's a place that by now is so familiar that it feels like home, but it's so different that it's like a foreign that it's like a vacation.

I know that other adults think that I'm crazy.  They think that it's just a book.  That in the scheme of things that it's not important.
And they are right.  There are other issues in the world.  There is war, racism, poverty.

But there's evidence that Harry Potter can teach tolerance and empathy to children.  By looking at the race purity and the corrupt leaders, children can use that to analyze and processes prejudices in their own lives.  

But the most important thing about Harry Potter is that it's a world that's there when the pressures of this one become too much to handle.  It's my refuge, and as things in the media and on the news get more and more grim, the world of Harry Potter will always be there.

So this Sunday Harry Potter will be 36 years old.

Happy birthday to The Boy Who Lived.

Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Let's hope my luck changes!!

My luck changed drastically on Saturday.

Saturday morning I went to get a massage.  It never happened.

I came back, dejected after the run around I went on.

I noticed that it was rather warm in the living room.  Our living room tends to run cold when the AC is on.

Then we realized that they AC wasn't on.

On Sunday the landlord came around.  The verdict was in.  The outside unit wasn't working.  You could hear the hum of electricity, but the fan wasn't spinning.  They would call the HVAC people on Monday.

Great, we can do this!

Sunday night we realized that no, we can't.

We went to bed on the couch.  Fans blowing on it.  The poor puppy was panting, hiding under the couch.  I think we collectively got 2 hours of sleep.  By 2am we were trying to open windows and looking online for a portable AC unit.

Once the morning came, it was clear that neither of us were up for work.  My eyes were burning from the lack of sleep.

We finally found a portable AC unit at Target.  (We couldn't use a window unit without ruining the screens.  The thing doesn't work overly well.  But in comparison, it's amazing.  Between that and the ice cold before bed shower, I slept last night.

I'm actually rather proud of myself.  It was last night at dinner when I broke down sobbing.  Usually that state of absolutely defeat happens earlier.

I'm actively trying to forget the rest of my house.  I never did get a chance to clean up the post-vacation mess.  And now it's really hard to do any work there.  The sweat that pours into your eyes after working for 10 minutes makes it difficult.

Today I'm meeting the repairman to see what the damage is.  I'm praying that they can either fix it today, or give me some sort of timeline as to when it'll be done.  If I know that this ordeal has an endpoint, I can endure it.

When I have some sense of a timeline I can make my to do list and see what I can do with the energy that I have each day.  With some sense of a timeline I can have some hope.

Sunday, July 24, 2016

We're having a heatwave...

It's hot around here.
 We're having a heatwave....

A tropical heatwave.

No seriously!  Look at these temperatures!!

You know what we don't have??

Air Conditioning!!

That's right.. ours is busted.  The outside unit isn't spinning, or turning... I can hear it trying to work, but no go.  And look at those temperatures!!  It's edging on 85 in here!

It's not pleasant.  But I really worry about the puppy.  She's been all pant-y since yesterday.  She has a non-consensual cold bath this morning.  She wasn't a fan, since water is the enemy and all...

Yes... first a massage that wasn't.  Now a broken AC unit.  Let's hope that bad luck doesn't come in 3's and the guy won't be here for a month.

Think cool thoughts for me y'all!

Saturday, July 23, 2016

I LOVE Comic Con!!! (Edited with more trailers)

It's San Diego Comic Con this weekend.

Why do I love it??

Because we get trailers!!  (I love me some good trailers!!))

The Wonder Woman trailer!!!  I've been waiting for this for basically ever!!  Heck, Wonder Woman was the sole reason I went to the Superman vs Batman movie!!

So far, so good!!

Edited to add:
I LOVE the fact that they are using WWI and not WWII as a backdrop to this movie for 2 reasons:

  1. WWII tends to get a LOT more film attention than WWI
  2. WWI was pointlessly brutal on such a scale that it was staggering.  I'm not talking actual loss of life, but the loss of life vs. military outcome.  It was awful.  And if Diana wants to see humanity at its worst, WWI was a good choice.
  3. Also, during WWI women has little in the way of rights!!  

I had NO idea that we'd get a Justice League trailer!!

I wonder if it ins't so much a trailer, as it the best they could put together with the footage and available CGI that they had.  (Maybe why there is so little Cyborg and so much Aquaman?)

Fantastic Beasts and Where to Find Them!!

This movie totally hit my world building love that I have!!  And it gives us the most information that we've had so far!!

(And he's totally a Pokemon trainer!!)

We even got some Suicide Squad!!

Sadly there was no Rogue One panel, so no new trailer.

These trailers are the biggest way that people like me, that are sweating at home, can enjoy all the geeky fun!!

Edited to add more trailers!!

The CW paraded theirs out:

Sadly, no Supergirl.

But Marvel did give us Dr. Strange:

And Captain Marvel!!

And a ride???

The massage that wasn't

Soon after commencement, I decided to treat myself to a massage.  I went to trusty Groupon and found a new place to try and a deal that I liked.

I bought the voucher and redeemed it, setting up my appointment.  Now, I did all of this at the beginning of June...  For an appointment today.

First clue that something wasn't right:  I found 2 addresses that were used.  So I asked.  Ok, she's on Mellon st. in Hampton now.  No big deal.

Second clue:  I got to the location, a rather not awesome part of Hampton, and there was NO door marked with the name of the massage studio.  There was ANOTHER massage studio's door....

Third Clue:  I called.  Right to voicemail. Voicemail was full  I texted.  No reply.

Fourth clue.  I knocked.  For like 10 minutes.  Nothing.

The conclusion:  No massage for me.  maybe next time I'll spend a little more money and get something not advertised on Groupon.

It's noon, and I'm out of fucks to give for today already:

Friday, July 22, 2016

It's actually Friday already??

This week's work week was 3 days.

Arguably the longest 3 days in the history of days!  I slapped myself more than once driving home last night so I'd stay awake!

(But it's it always the way when you get back from vacation?)

Before I left for vacation much of my job consisted of fixing problems that other people created.  After coming back, I faced more of the same, but not as hair-pullingly-stressful as before.

So that's good, right?

We're still rather in that vacation mindset.  The clean laundry is still in the dryer.  The kitchen looks like a tornado hit it.

But hey, at least we're started watching thing on the DVR!

Choices, right?

The food in the house is there, ready for me to make dinner.

My workouts are there, ready for me to do.

I just don't want to do anything.  I want it to still be vacation.

Sadly, it's not.

Saturday we're going grocery shopping.  (Saturday is also the day the old mattresses are taken away and the new ones will be put up!)  I have my workouts are set for next week.

I even ran today:
I'm Sam, not Steve, FYI
It's always hard coming back from a vacation.  Having to get back to your life.  But I'm ready.

Now, to finish up the rest of my work to-do list and to make a weekend to do list.  Also a meal plan.

I've eaten too much and drank more wine than I should have.  (Also, there's some in my fridge...)  I need to get back to this weight loss thing!

I've got this!


Wednesday, July 20, 2016

A Vacation at the Falls!

We just returned from a 5 day vacation in Buffalo, NY and Niagara Falls, Ontario.

I have a lot to talk about, but today, it's all going to be Niagara Falls.


Because I know what people say.  Niagara Falls is where our grandparents went on their honeymoon.  Why should we go?

Well, you should go, because it's a simply amazing place to visit!!

You even have a choice of 2 countries!

We drove to the falls on a Friday afternoon.  You have to drive through Niagara Falls, NY to get to Niagara Falls, ON.  There's something about the US side... It's an odd mix of cheap souvenir shops and a MASSIVE casino!

It's the Seneca Niagara Resort and Casino.  The hotel can be seen for miles.  I believe the casino operates in what used to be the Niagara falls convention center.  Right before you hit the border you pass Smokin' Joe's Native Center ($2.99 tshirts is proudly displayed).  I don't know what it is, but someday I'll stop and check it out!

So we hit the border and went right to our hotel:  The Fallsview Casino and Resort.

And they weren't kidding about the view!

The Tesla Fountain in the lobby,.  So cool!

The place was incredible!!  But we didn't stay long!!

So Niagara Falls Parks has these passes.  Adventure passes.  Don't pass go!  Don't collect $200!  Just get it!!

We got the basic ones, and for $55 we got:

  • Hornblower Niagara Cruises (think Maid of the Mist)
  • Journey Behind the Falls 
  • White Water Walk
  • Niagara's Fury (I actually wouldn't do it again...)
  • Two-day WEGO Access (It's a bus, and boy is it a lifesaver!!)
  • $100 in Bonus Coupons
And for less than the price of admission you can add other attractions.  We added the Whirpool Areocar.

We did the Hornblower Cruise first!

the bottom picture is from
I can't quite express how wet you actually get...  Seriously!  But it was SO worth it!!

after the cruise, we went exploring!

We had to find Tesla!

Sadly, after that it was time for shopping and dinner.  I bought a tiny bottle of Ice Wine and settled in to watch the fireworks.  Which we couldn't see from our window!  Apparently they do them in front of the American Falls.  

The next day we did the rest of our adventure:

The Journey Behind the Falls is SO completely worth it.  See that cave and opening.  That's the frickin' Falls outside of it!!  Seriously!!!  You can't quite touch the water, but you used to.  (Dad says that as a kid I actually did touch it!)

Later on we moved upstream to the White Water Walk and the Areocar.
the car is from, and the logo is from
The White Water Walk is simply incredible.

The river narrows and the river speeds up.  Class 6 rapids.

Seriously!  that's one international border that involves death if yo try to walk across it!!  Just standing on the deck and watch it was awe inspiring!

The Areocar was equally amazing.  It's been running for over a century!

All in all, we had a WONDERFUL 2 days.  Someday I'd like to go back and stay longer.  Maybe do the falls walk on the American side.

But if you were thinking that Niagara Falls had nothing to do, man where you wrong!!!

(The Buffalo part of the trip is coming soon!)