Friday, April 30, 2010

Writing, But Not Here

A jar of tea and an entire book to write.  I've got no words for this blog, because they're all busy elsewhere.  I wrote the entire first chapter yesterday, and I'm halfway through with the second today.  I doubt if I'll actually get to write this whole book in two weeks, but I might!  :)  Still have some finals and other things to finish up on the side....

So exciting to be writing again.  Sun, you have permission to shine again.  Everything's back to normal!

Funny story :: I had a terrible dream two nights ago....  I dreamed la madre was forbidding me to write!  I got SO mad, SO rebellious, had an absolute fit.  Woke up, and I was STILL mad!  Just furious!  Although it shouldn't have bothered me, because I haven't been writing, like at all... but it did.  And then, lo and behold, I have this story.

Moral of the story :: Mothers are inspirational.

Another moral of the story :: If you can't bear something being forbidden, it's still part of you.

And I don't think I'll ever get around to writing the queued stories...their heyday passes, and I just don't have enough inspi to go back and get re-excited about them.  Sad, but true.  Same thing as how I can't write something twice if the computer kills it, etc.

So I'm off again.  Must. Write.  Must.  Write.  MUST!  WRITE!!

'I slumped onto the floorboards, cushioned by a plush rug.  The smooth fibers felt cold against my groping fingers.  I’d read enough grisly accounts of battles to turn anyone green, but no words could somehow house this terror.  I could still see the midshipman’s wide blue eyes, pale as ice, in my mind.
                “Oh, get that out of here, dash it!” my father’s voice said.  It sounded strained.  I slid forward on hands and knees, pressing my ear against the door just in time to hear a solid thump as a sea boot met something soft and heavy.  The two heavy doors in the next room slammed together.  I thrust myself away from the door, nausea overwhelming me.
                “You didn’t have to kick him,” Papa’s voice spat.
                “What’s wrong, Saunders?” asked another.  He sounded lazy, or unconcerned, his accent less clipped.  “When dead chaps die, they’re no longer chaps, but friends, eh?”
                “Shut up, Campbell.”'
AMZi  x x x x x

Thursday, April 29, 2010

A Hull...

It's amamzing how quickly it's taking shape!  She's called the Forewarned and she'll carry 12 guns when she's finished.  A crew of 100, including Captain, cook, mate, and quartermaster.  Two masts, square-sailed, plus a trysail and a total of four jibs.  Weather deck, gun deck, foredeck, quarterdeck, and hold.  Medium draft, sharply raked bow.  Fantastic maneuverability.

She's still being developed as far as the details go.  The masts will be the next to go in.  Then capstan, pump, bell, forepeak and bowsprit, stern details, lanterns, helm.  You can't see them, but we do have bunks in the captain's cabin and the mates' cabin just forward of it.  Also a couple of seachests already.  I'm being told I need a swivel-gun, but I refuse.  

This is the status as of now.  We have a ladder down into the gun deck and hold, ladders to the quarterdeck, railings (modifications coming) and steps down to the for'd cabin.  No rudder yet, that's in the works.  Just look at her lines!  She's gorgeous.  I'm thrilled, I tell you!!

And also for another reason.  At long last, I have a real story.  One I'm writing to save my life.  One I HAVE to write.  I KNEW I had to return to the sea!  I KNEW I wouldn't be able to write fantasy ever again!  I JUST KNEW IT!  I knew I had to wait and something would come.  And it did, hit me square between the eyes in the shower this morning.  What is it with showers and inspiration?  Came practically in a tidy package with a gift-bow on top.  No homeworking for me, this time, I'm plunging straight in!  I'm 1,683 words into Chapter 1 now, and I'm only pausing long enough to write this before I go back into the fray.

'“Dear Edward,” I heard my mother dictate.  “When you receive this, I will be dead, and you have killed me.”
                My heartbeat faltered and I felt coldness enter my chest.  Staggering backwards, I knocked a candle from a table to the floor.  The wax stick struck the ground with a wet thwack and before the doctor could open the door, I disappeared.'

Ahhh, it's good to be on the sea again.
AMZi x x x x x

Wednesday, April 28, 2010

Warning: Bug Below

Doing some yardwork last night, we turned over this dashing little gentleman!

Is he not GORGEOUS?  I went into conniptions, got me a jar, and the LGM, and tried to snap some photos.  I know I should know what kind of beetle he is, as I remember learning it, but I can't remember!  Arrgh!

He's so gorgeous.  Look at all that blue!

Didn't think the "bugs" label would get any more use, actually!  I'm really not a huge fan of bugs.  I abhor moths and spiders and silverfish.  But beetles I adore.  And just about any bug, when it's on the other side of a screen or window. :)

Got company now, so I can't stay long, and besides I'm itching to take my maths final.  Positively itching.  So excited!  :)

AMZi x x x x x

Tuesday, April 27, 2010


Ugh, I am so ready to be done!  Done with everything!  I'd like to vanish for a good six weeks' time, off to a little hermitage somewhere.  That does sound nice.  And yet, oddly, I'll probably take everything I'm avoiding with me anyway!  I can't go without a piano or guitar... I must have a dozen books at least... I ought to take something edifying to study... and some Spanish literature... and of course my knitting!  Well, I might as well do all of that right here, yes?

Mainly I want to escape finals.  Everything has been easing off lately and nurturing my Spring Fever, and now everything is culminating this week!  Socorro!!  But actually, I'm on top of it.  I hope.  Ha.

Anyhow, I sit down to study or write a composicion or review my trig identities, and something always thwarts me!  A new blog that needs reading, or I do something incredibly stupid like pick up the guitar.  

In the blog case, the culprit is this blog, and in the guitar case, you have a guitar.  Hahaha, get it?  Case?  Sorry.  In the guitar situation, you have a song called Craigie Hill.  'Nuff said.  :)

Having a bit of a cold snap lately.  Weather is so strange.  A lot of nice quiet rain, too.  Which I enjoy.  It was so chilly last night, the garden blanket had to migrate up from the foot of the bed!

And I'm looking forward to when this project is done so I can use it.  Although it WOULD be the sort of project in which the further along you go, the longer it takes to go further!

And I've been doing a lot of prop designing and sketching and mapping and watching my lovely brig take shape on la pantalla de la computadora del hermano.  

Also, finding myself wishing I were really bi-lingual.  Aurora from the blog above speaks Swedish and PERFECT English.  I speak English and sufferable Spanish.  And small amounts of German, though I understand much more than I speak.  I speak Latin, but that doesn't do me much good, yes?  :)  I long to learn a Norther European tongue backwards and forwards.  That would be lovely.

So I'm promptly going to get distracted from writing this post...oh, *sniff*  I smell food cooking!   Ta!
AMZi x x x x x

Sunday, April 25, 2010

A Boat...

In that dreadful in-between time, when you've realized you NEED a cup of tea, and you've put the kettle on, but now you've got to wait for it to BOIL (ugh!  I'm an American and I want instantaneous gratification! *pouts*  Haha) I sat down at the piano to play a Tarantella.  By Edward McDowell.  Save. Us. All.  It's FRIGHTFUL!  It is SO annoying when I can see these "great" composers utilizing cheap amateur tricks that I myself recall using!  Only, at age 8, not as a world-renowned composer.  Hmph.  So then I had to go play a DIFFERENT Tarantella by Mendelssohn which entirely made up for it.  Ha.

But now I've got my tea, and maybe the headache will dissipate.  Have had a headache all day-ish, but I will say it was not particularly alleviated by the following activity....

I've commissioned el hermano, the one and only, the same one who modeled my sword, to model my ship.  This ship has been sailing the seas of my imagination for about...3 or 4 years.  It's my personal ship from my pirating days (which, if you ask me in public, I will loudly denounce and deny) and I lent it to my villain, Sacar, for my book Averill.  If you've read Averill you may have noticed that I made it through the entire novel without actually saying the name of Sacar's ship.  That's because my ship has no name.  She never has.

(Oooh!  Note the sharply raked bow and all them jibs!  She could practically be classified as a clipper, for her shape and length, and all the cloth she carries....  Except for the shallow draft...but that's good for maneuverability.  A tertiary clipper, then!)

I gather it sounds strange to say "my pirating days" and "my ship" as if it were all real....  It's really just occurred to me.  How odd.  I guess I've always talked like that... my imaginary friends, imaginary possessions, and imaginary exploits have always been chatted openly about with el hermano and mis amigos.  "But I have a boat," I'll say, perfectly straight-faced.  Hmmm.  I AM odd!  :)

Anyhow, you've no IDEAR how blooming hard it is to actually map out everything you already know about your ship.  Himmel it took me upwards of an hour!  But it's worth it, to finally have her all out on paper after all this time.  I do love the sea.  I would ask for suggestions for a once-and-for-all name for her, but in the past I've never really heeded suggestions.  No one will know her the way I do, so it's probably a waste of time to offer a name, unless you have a really amamzing sudden inspiration. :)  But go ahead anyway.

On a completely unrelated note, have you ever been called a "wiseacre"?  Get this :: It has absolutely nothing to do with wisdom OR land measurements!  It actually comes from a Middle Dutch word, wijssegger, which means "one who feigns knowledge or cleverness" or "an insolent upstart."  Is. That. Not. AMAMZING?  I love it.  I almost want to BE a wijssegger just to BE one!....Okay, not really. :)

Ik ben wijssegger!

Friday, April 23, 2010

A New Project

It's all very hush-hush, you know.  Mum's the word.  Mainly to save face if I don't end up finishing, because I'm really not a big project person.  Crochet a teacup the size of a bean, yes, but actually commit to something for days (or weeks) on end?  Save us!  Yes, yes, I do the granny square blanket thing, but that's a bit of a bridge, don't you think?  I make multiple small things (and get a little oomph out of each completion) and then put them all together into one big thing.  Quite a nice arrangement, yes?

Anyhow, the Mysterious Project is going nicely though, for having just started it.  I'm using honking big needles (11s, remember I'm a small project person?) and baby-weight yarn.  Very light and airy.  Muches of fun.

Was outside earlier and spotted a butterfly, but in typical Amzi fashion, did not have the LGM on me.  Sigh.  I wasn't planning on taking pictures, though, just having a little sunshine to myself.  Which was pleasant.  Minus the bees everywhere.  Not too keen on them, am I?

Been listening to a lot of lectures by a chap named John Stonestreet, with Summit Ministries.  Exceeding interesting stuff, that.  Highly enjoyable to listen to.  It's not every day I can sit listening to somebody speak, and actually agree the whole time!  :)  It's a luxury, really.

Still monstrous tired.  There is to be cleaning and muches of work this weekend, so I apologize in advance if my posts get a bit scarce.  Sigh.  Summer will be here soon, and THEN things will happen!  :)

AMZi x x x x x

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Smell of Rain

I do like a good rain once in awhile.  All in a row, it can get bothersome, but I don't mind a spring shower.  I like going round the house in the dim light, and being surprised by a thunderclap, and everything outside being quiet and nap-worthy.  Too bad I'm not a napper!

I know my posts have been short and skipping lately, and instead of apologizing I'm going to make excuses in typical Amzi fashion.  There has been a lot going on, muches of things to stay on top of and think about and decide and then conclude (what, actually DO them??).  Have finally gotten a chance to catch up on my sleep deficit (which I can tell you certainly kills me dead) and on my dream deficit.  Seems lately the few hours I could fall asleep without a knot in my stomach were very much concentrating on JUST sleep.  Dreamed again for the first time in a long time last night.  It was worth it. :)  (Don't you DARE, Liese)

I've told you I'm not a pine-er.  If I'm denied something I make do without.  There's no point in wondering about what might have been.  What I'm not so great with is waiting...not KNOWING whether I'll have to do without or whether I can go ahead and Anticipate my heart out!  That's what's been tying me in knots inside lately.  Luckily this morning I've got some things ironed out and they'll stop bothering me.  I do like a bit of security and closure.  Ahhhh.

And as I'm on recovery mode, I won't be talking much.  I've got imagining to do, not so much expostulation and expositions.  Suddenly a good many things don't seem so blooming important to worry about.  I'm going to listen to the rain and think about something worth thinking about.  Beat that!

AMZi x x x x x

PS watched the 2005 version of Pride and Prejudice... Movie-wise and actor-wise, I like it better than the 1995, but story-wise of course it can't compete.  All in all a rather enjoyable movie, but in an entirely different way from the book.  Hmmm.

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

JUST Hear Me Out!

I'm serious!  When I start talking about why I like math, people smile warmly...and then run away.  I'm not SCARY, right?  Well, not TOO scary.  And math... is awesome, right?

It's not even like I adore math for a mathy reason.  *pushes nerdy glasses up on nose and quotes*  "Erm, there's only one right answer.  I like that."  Or "Numbers are shineeeee."  No, I like math because you can do awesome things with it!  It's like I've been waiting my whole life just to get the cool stuff!  It's so exciting!!

You should have heard me when I first started USING logarithms.  As in they actually end up being useful in the end, instead of just instruments of torture to math-haters.  I yelled, "Logarithms can go BACKWARDS???"  Excitement.

Or the fact that you can find the area of the inside of a curve?  Um, am I the only one who sees this amazing-ness in this?

How about trig identities?  They're like logical syllogisms, but with math!  They're like the brainteaser thinking-skill activities we've been doing since Grade 2!  How is this not awesome??

Really, though.  I honestly think most of the "I hate math," and "Math hates me," and "I'm deathly allergic to matrices!  Gaaah!" is purely psychological.

La hermana couldn't take vitamins when she should have because she convinced herself that she couldn't swallow them, and that they would taste bad.  Cause No End of Trouble, let me tell you!

I was THE pickiest eater for the longest time, until I started training my brain.  I'd smell something cooking, and tell myself, "Heeeeeeyy, this doesn't smell so bad!"  And then later, "This is going to taste great!"  Bang, all of a sudden, I like all these foods I never would have touched.  Makes life so much easier, yes?

So why won't the same thing work on math?  Focus on the exciting parts.  It's really not boring, tedious sometimes, but not boring.  And so much of it is really really  interesting!  It's lovely to see things falling into place, to check your answer and go, "Hey!  It really works!"

And a long sheet of composite functions can work wonders on a headache or a bad mood. :)  Trust me, I've tried it on multiple occasions. :)

AMZi x x x x x

PS: yes, I was incredibly nerdy and embroidered a graph on a sheet of notebook paper.  Fear me.
PSS: A couple people have asked me where I got the idea for the signal flags on my handkerchief project.  I love all things to do with the sea, and had known about nautical signal flags for awhile, and like them a lot.  Then I just got the idea to embroider them!  :)

Monday, April 19, 2010

I Wasn't, But I Am

Posting, that is.  I am far too busy to spend time creating a post on here, however short it may turn out.  So talk me out of it immediately.

Nahh.  I just saw some pictures in a Harry & David catalogue (whoever they are!) we got in the mail, and they are so refreshing!!


A hamper with daffs!

*wishful whimper*

AND had to showcase my completed embroidery project.  Signal flags, precious, on a handkerchief!  I am muchly enjoying the colors all together like that.  :)

And I AM madly busy, and I'm NOT going to hang around and say more, and I AM going to go drink hot tea without delay.  Good day.
AMZi x x x x x

Sunday, April 18, 2010


Triangle action has been taking place the past week, mainly while I've been finding out just who exactly killed Florence Teller (from this book).  Today I piled up my scrap-yarn triangles to take some pictures before blocking them.  This time, I blocked by wetting them thoroughly, squeezing out the excess water, arranging them on a doubled carwash towel, and pressing them on low heat for a few seconds.  Made them lie flat nicely.  I still haven't woven in the ends yet, as you can see...

Because I'm not quite sure how I'm going to put them together.   But I still wanted to see what a bunting might look like, so I experimented like this ::

Which I like very much.  The pattern for these little isosceles is as follows ::

Cast-on 10 stitches
Row 1 :: Knit across
Row 2 :: Purl across
Row 3 :: K2tog, K across until 2 st remain unworked, K2tog
Row 4 :: P across
Row 5 :: K across
Row 6 :: P across
Row 7 :: K2tog, K until 2 st remain unworked, K2tog
Row 8 :: P across
Row 9 :: K across
Row 10 :: P across
Row 11 :: K2tog, K until 2 st remain unworked, K2tog
Row 12 :: P across
Row 13 :: K2tog twice
Cut yarn, thread end through two remaining loops on needle, and pull tightly to finish off.

Quite simple, and the ratio works.  Have fun! :)

An update on the little branch status ::

AMZi x x x x x

Friday, April 16, 2010

Soca River

Not very good pictures, sorry, I don't know where I got them.  Thank you, Google. :)  Soca [SOH-cha] River, Bovec [Bawv-etch], Slovenia (c) God's Handiwork Inc.  Thank you, Lord. :)

I'm ready to immerse myself in another world now.  If I'm not back in three hours, commend my soul to the story.  

Writing at long last,
AMZi x x x x x

Thursday, April 15, 2010


Thursday is for working, staying at home, sitting outside, reading and listening and studying.

What I'm Reading::

Well, actually, listening to.  Narrated by the incredible Prebble.  I can't believe I've survived this long without discovering Charles Todd and Inspector Ian Rutledge!  I've read many of the really good classic mystery series, my favorite being Lord Peter Wimsey, but Rutledge is quickly rising through the ranks as a fresh new sense.  So many of the Scotland Yard detective books from that time period sound exactly alike, but this is good and traditional without being cliched.  I'm enjoying it immensely, although I think I'm missing something by not starting with the first Rutledge book, whatever it is.  Must look into that.

Keep a weather eye out on the tabs above under the heading!  Soon to join the ranks will be a tutorial on recycling some of those plastic grocery sacks you get every time you go to get bread and bell peppers. ;)

AMZi x x x x x

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

My Creative Space

My Creative Space this week contains evening sunlight and lots of quiet thinking going on.  It also involves yet another one of those crafty-world "fads" that I swore I'd never fall for... bunting.  Well, sort of.  Not yet, anyway.  My subconscious must be on a garlandy-type-thingie rail.  

Also a great chance to showcase some smaisin knitting needles made for Yours Truly by Yours Truly's hermano.  They just so happen to be a size 11, and feature this number proudly on their little rubber caps, which were nabbed off of something important while it wasn't looking.  :)

I'm usually such a multi-tasker, go-go-go, buckle down and get-'er-done person, and lately I'm in such a rut!  I'd rather just sit and think, and think, and think!  I suppose there could be worse obsessions, yes?  Ah well.  I'm positively exhausted now, and even a weak brew isn't brightening me up, so this'll be a short post.  

And you thought I would refrain from a mathish comment today!  Don't you know Wednesdays better than that?  I learned some Calculus today!  Integration, plus finding the area of a triangle the calculus way before extrapolating it to find area of wackier shapes... where'd you go?  Ah well. :P

AMZi x x x x x 

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Methinks I See a Trend

On my mind this past few weeks?  Life and the future.  The intricacies and amazing complexities of growing up, growing older, growing, period.  The worries, questions, promises, chances, paths, choices, dangers, surprises of moving forward.  I'm not a forward-moving person naturally, and generally the Future has to come in and drag me out by my hair rather than the other way round....

But the way everything approaches and then blossoms and then moves on by....  First you meet one concept, one new situation, and it hits you in the face.  The moment you pull through it, thinking "Okay, I can do this," suddenly it is so much bigger and harder than you thought.  Sometimes I know, I can take this.  One step at a time.  Keep going. Other times, I find myself saying, "It's not's too HARD, what's the POINT?"

Keep your eyes open.  Look around you and realize everything you're living for.  What are you looking forward?  You're not alone, and obviously many people before you survived this point, and many people will go after you.  Leave them a legacy, try to help them through it.  Why else do we experience trials or processes?  Why else do we experience at all??  To grow, yes, to mature, to achieve great things, and so that we can relate to those who come behind and try to help them.  I will always be grateful to and for my older friends who look out for me, who teach me to learn from their mistakes, who encourage me.  Sometimes it's so comforting just to know someone else understands, yes?

Oh, how do you write this down?  I tell you, every day, every minute, my heart is singing.  I'm ready to take it all on.  I don't know the gameplan :: I don't know what's coming :: I don't know how I'll feel when I get there :: the Point Is To Go.  I'm ready to Believe.

And in the middle of all of these Grown-Up thoughts, let's take a moment to notice the tiny details that are still so thrilling.  The white "red"-bud tree is finally in full bloom!  Time for the update on the status of that little branch!

AMZi x x x x x

Monday, April 12, 2010

Some Outdoor Pictures

Lately things have been pretty interesting...  Lots to think about, lots to do and look up and research and write in multiple languages.  Lots of outdoor Garage-Pong playing to do (brill game invented by el padre) and lots of backyard swing sitting to do.  Lots of pictures to be taking, but no batteries to be putting into the camera!  Here are a few I managed to squeak out of these old batteries today.  I drove home, dropped all my stuff, grabbed the LGM, and went outdoors to snap a bit in the lovely lighting.

My head is always spinning a little after a long day out of the house.  My hermitage and equilibrium are equally disturbed.  It's fun while it lasts...but I always return a little loopy. :)  Today is just the day to go outdoors and listen to some good country music, soak up the green of the grass, and refuse to worry about a single thing.

AMZi x x x x x
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