the snow’s coming down, I’m watching it fall

It’s snowing!!!!! YAAAAAYYYYY!!!!!

I was so excited when I woke up this morning and saw the flakes sliding past my window. I stood up on my bed and announced “It’s snowing!” to the world. Or, um, myself. Whatever.

Well, I’ve been sick with a cold for the past few days. (But poor Mom had the flu…) Of course that didn’t stop me from my volunteering job! This time I worked with a med student named Erin who was very nice, and also formed an… interesting… view of me.
Her: “So, are you a med student too?”
Me: “No. Well, I’m not really any kind of student.”
Her: “So what do you do when you’re not volunteering?”
Me: “I work at the library and I write.”
Her: “Oh, that’s really cool. So, did you go to school for English?”
Me: (stifled laughter) “Erm. No.”
Her: “You just started writing out of high school, then?”
Me: (thinking: holy cow, she thinks I’m in college or out of college…) “It’s kind of something I’ve always done, so yeah, even before high school. Yep.”
Later I overheard her telling someone I was a librarian(!) and, well, it was kind of a nice fairyland that I was experiencing there, where everyone pretty much assumed I was an adult. I didn’t confirm or deny. As Mom would say, “That would be true, and also, not a lie!”
It was also very fun giving her book-present suggestions. (Mom said, “Now look what you’ve done, she’ll give that to someone and say it was recommended by a librarian!” To which I replied, “It’s a classic, okay!?!”) (Because yeah, you guessed it: I recommended Alice.)

Hey, I know, let’s jump around in chronological order so that I can tell you about all the fun things that happened recently!

Like the…. JARS OF CLAY Christmas concert! They played Christmas music! They played “Closer”!!!! Aaaaaand we were the only ones dancing? (By we I mean: the DHFs, me, and Poncho the Awesomesauce, of course.)
DHFs: “I mean, how could you not dance to that?”
Me: “I think they drank the poison cool-aid, you guys. They were dead as doornails. Bumps on a log.”
Francis: “I don’t think the band could see us dancing way back there.”
Me: “Of course they could see us. We were the only things moving in the whole place!”
Oh, and did I mention that we all had to sing “The Twelve Days of Minecraft” (thank you, Youtube parodies, for killing my sanity) on the way there to cheer Poncho up? (“Fiiiiive gol-den blocks!”) It took PoorBill half the song to figure out that it was a Minecraft thing… Yeeeeeah.
The next morning (we slept over), we all discussed how apparently no one understands “The Long Fall Back to Earth” album even though it perfectly sums up a CHUNK OF MY SOUL.

And… The Hobbit! (I said this in a singsongy voice.) (In my head.) I had a more detailed critique,  but my main thoughts were:
Hi, Mr. Thornton.
The singing is lovely.
I want some dwarf friends.
Bilbo is awesome.
The end.
Oh, and Dodge came. :)

Speaking of movies, I finally watched “A Hard Day’s Night” yesterday while resting from my sickness. I had meant to watch Captain America, but my DVD was damaged (it looked all burned and weird. I blame HYDRA). So I found A Hard Day’s Night online and watched it, and wow, it was weird. It kind of reminded me of Alice in Wonderland (possibly the movie versions more than the actual book, due to disjointed-ness) because it was so nonsensical.

I also went last-minute Christmas shopping (mostly for craft supplies, as I made most of the presents this year, but also for some hard-to-find items) with Eliza and Bug. (I just realized that I do basically everything with Eliza and Bug.) (And they’re going to comment like, “What do you mean you just realized? This has been going on for years!”) Now I am almost done with all of my Christmas presents, even though I’m now going at a somewhat breakneck pace and will probably be finishing some on Christmas Eve. (Bug knitted through The Hobbit in order to finish a present! Now that is some dedication!) Or The Second Day of Christmas. Ironically, the ones I started the earliest are going to be the last done. My life in a nutshell, people. But oh well, they’re fun to make.

Then I shall commence with wrapping. Well, I have already commenced somewhat. I am really excited to wrap everyone’s differently and with much more creativity than in previous years. And we also have to finish decorating and tidying the house… Excitement! Anticipation!

(O come, O come, Emma-a-anuel…)

Yours from beautiful snow-land,
Pen

PS: As I wrote this, Mom and Poncho were wrapping presents at the table where I am working… Poncho said in a creepy robot voice, “I want to be the wrap-inator.”

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Notes from Within the Shelter

I have just had the most wonderful 2 days! Because:
A) I got to sleep over at the DHFs’!!! Which of course meant that we were hyper, and silly, and dressed as opera-singing pirates with a bunk-bed ship. “Gimme the mascara, I need a mustache” is one memorable quote by Bug, and I believe it was Steph who admonished the crew, “It’s a pirate ship, not an art gallery!”
B) We went to see Jars of Clay in concert!!!! WOOO!! It was awesome. They played a bunch of old stuff that was new-to-me, on account of it being the 15th anniversary of their band being a band. Which means their band is about as old as me. Weird. Anyhow. Flood, Dead Man, Work, Worlds Apart, Out of My Hands, Small Rebellions, Weapons, Two Hands, and Shelter are songs that I can remember them playing at the moment. We went into the mosh pit! (Which was not really a mosh pit, more of a group of people standing around the stage and intermittently swaying/clapping/dancing/singing). After I tripped over myself to get out of the pew thingy, of course, because what fun is anything without falling on my face? But the moshing part was fun and I was not injured. I think I accidentally stepped on someone’s foot though. Too bad. I had to dance.
But after the concert was over….
C) We. Met. JARS OF CLAY!! In person! Bug and I were star-struck and I handed them my CD to sign. They were friendly. Eliza asked the singer to sign her CD to Poor Bill, because PoorBill was supposed to come but could not due to illness!! So when he said he couldn’t come, we said, “Poor Bill…” and that is exactly what was written. One of the guitar guys asked if we were all sisters. Sadly we are not! By blood anyhow. So yay!! That was really cool. Of course Dodge is soooo excited (note the sarcasm) that I got a new Jars of Clay CD. Now he gets to hear all new songs and find them annoying! He calls them Cans of Pop. I am not really sure why…?

Now I’m home again home again jiggety jog, sitting on the couch with a sleepy dog. Hey, that rhymed!
As you can see, the randomness has yet to wear off.

Sigh… So tired… But so happy….

Yours till the carrot sticks,
Pen

I’ll let you understand; I am not a lonely soldier.

So. The above quote (of course it’s a quote, this is me we’re talking about) seemed fitting considering that tomorrow is Memorial Day. It’s from Spirit’s “Soldier”, which is a song that I uually listen to when I’m a: depressed, or b: practicing various Irish dance exercises. The beat is perfect for doing ups and downs, points, and turnout practice.

Speaking of Irish dance, the Feis was today and it was so fun! The DHFs came!! I got second place in treble jig!! I wore my new school dress!!

Then I came home and baked apple cinnamon scones. Yum.

Uh, what was I talking about? The thought of scones distracted me. Oh, right, now I remember.

So, back to the topic of depressed music… I think my dad’s theme song would be “Why Can’t I Be Free?” because that is the question he asks about every other day. Someday I’m going to bust him outta this city. See if I don’t.
Mom says that she would like her theme song to be “All My Tears” by Jars of Clay, which is a nice thought but she totally stole my idea! Just kidding. No, really though. That was going to be my theme song, dang it! It goes “When I go, don’t cry for me/in my father’s arms I’ll be…/it don’t matter where you bury me/ I’ll be home and I’ll be free/ it don’t matter where I lay/ all my tears be washed away.”

Now you see why I wanted it, and now you probably want to adopt it as your anthem, too. Hmph.
As for my theme song… I guess it would change. I tend to pay attention to the drum parts in songs, since I like a driving beat, but I also tend to pick apart lyrics. I always talk with Mom about what I think lyrics mean. I had to explain the song “Good Monsters” to her, and a few weeks ago we tried to decipher “Heart”. Maybe it’s the poet in me, but I love to think about what the different things in songs might mean. Maybe that’s why I generally dislike country songs. They’re too obvious. They’re always about love or fishing or being a redneck or something. They don’t have more than one meaning, or more thna one way of being interpreted, which is the whole fun about discussing what one thinks a song means.

For example, “Closer” by Jars of Clay is my favorite song. I like it because you can take it from a God-to-person/ person-to-God POV, or from person-to-person. It can be about God asking, “I don’t understand why we can’t get close enough”, like, “why won’t you talk to me? Why won’t you get closer?” or it can be a person feeling like they are disconnected from God or that he is a far away, and they don’t understand what they have to do to feel closer. (I can relate to that sometimes, for sure.) From person to person, it makes sense too. All the references to the leaky boat, tears, a bomb, it’s like saying that “we’re falling apart here; I’m trying to keep us together, but if you want me to love you you have both get closer to me and allow me to get closer to you”. 

Maybe I over analyze, yeah? But anyway. That’s what I think.

It kind of gives me an idea… Maybe I could ever so often post my thoughts on certain songs, and how they relate to life as it is right now…. We used to do something similar at schoolschool, but I forget what we called it. When I brought in a song the whole class wanted to know what band it was, which made me wish I’d brough some Jars of Clay instead of whatever I did bring. 

Hah. My musical taste was deemed cool for a day. How funny.

To close… Take a listen to this and this.  (My favorite and second favorite songs… The second, you might recognize if you’ve read some of my earlier posts. I quote it a lot, ha.)

Yours till the kite strings,
Pen

Sorry ’bout that

Okay. I’m back and a little calmer. My dad is not very good at making me feel better because he is a marsh-wiggle himself, and besides that a guy, and so the combination equals not so good at making me feel better when I’m really angry or stressed. But when I’m sad he’s very nice to me. I’m such a daddy’s girl. ;)

Aaaanyway, back to what I was saying… So we started school like a week and a half ago. I was sad to see summer go, and yet I am really enjoying this school year so far, better than last year. We are much more organized now and I really like my new math book (a real shocker). It had a picutre of Alice and the Red Queen right on page one of chapter one, so I was like, “I think I’m gonna like this book”. And I do. Plus I am really enjoying Botany…

Botany, yes! I have been collecting botanical specimens all summer long, pressing them and saving them. Now I have a cool botany textbook to learn from, books about trees and herbs, and also I am creating my own botany scrapbook, using all my specimens!! Which reminds me, I was supposed to take a picture of the Northern Pin Oak at my DHFs’ house… oh well. Mayhap they will take one for me and send it in the mail or something. I’ve been going back to using the ol’ fashioned system of mailing letters. It’s kind of cool becuase it’s like being in Victorian times or something. E.B. (one of my DHFs) and I sometimes write ‘ship logs’ to each other, like we are on a ship and we’re documenting everything that’s going on. It’s fun, actually. She’s Captain Hornblower and I’m First Lieutenant Curly.  

But that’s getting off subject. Botany… I am completely in love with it now. Fascinated by it. I collect leaves and plants wherever we go. (Also, as of late, feathers, but that’s just for fun and not for school. I found a bluejay feather this morning in the DHFs’ backyard, and it is very nice.) S.P. (another DHF) got me a ginormous leaf from when she and the others went to Kentucky, but I forgot to take it home. I’m sad now… alas!!!

So yesterday night, when we were going to get ice cream, we were singing in the car really loudly. P.B., aka the dad of the DHFs (well he is actually SP’s uncle… SP is cousin of EB, aka Eliza and her younger sister BB, aka Bug. They all live in the same house.) was getting annoyed. Of course we were listening to Jars of Clay, so there were no songs at all on the whole CD that we didn’t know. Except I think we were using PB’s iPhone and not a CD. Oh well. The reason he was getting annoyed is that for some reason we all tend to sing very high when we’re all together. I usually don’t sing high at all, but when I’m around them singing I like automatically harmonize. We call PB “Poor Bill” like in Alice in Wonderland movie when Bill the lizard is kicked out of the chimney and they all say, “Poor Bill.” So whever we feel like, ‘poor so-and-so’ we say “Poor Bill!” in an accent.
So then… we were all wearing capes, and being the Queen’s Court. SP was the Queen, I was her younger sister the Princess, Eliza was the Knight, and Bug was a Lord. I said, “Lord, you need a lady. Go get one now!”
Lord: “why?”
Me: “Becuase then she would be Lady Bug! hahahahahahahahaha!!!!”
I know. I laugh at such random and ‘ridonckulous’ things. (We’ve all seen the movie Bolt and we say Ridonckulous all the time now, like the hamster in the movie.)
Well, then the Queen and the Princess shared a large Reese’s blizzard, so it was all good. Yum! And those are huuuge. There is no way I would be able to eat one by myself.

Making the videos was fun. Eliza wore her dad’s suit jacket, tie, and American flag cap for two parts, and then we made Bug go put them away. She put the cap in the closet instead of on the bedpost, and so he knew that we’d been using his stuff while he was away at work!
The many deleted bloopers consisted of hair falling down out of hats whilst we were playing a boy character, people saying “ouch!”, lawnmowers going, the camera malfunctioning, me saying “oh, is it filming?”, Bug whispering loudly, curtains falling, coke spilling, et cetera. SP and I were stuffed into the trunk of a minivan and we whined like little kids for this one scene, and then for another it was Bug and I pretending to be little kids fighting over nothing. I ripped up our “mother’s” voting ballot at the end. :)

So all in all it was quite brilliant. I can’t wait until you see the videos themselves! I hope they post them soon!!!
Well, bye for now. In a much better mood, yours truly,
–Pen :>)