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Don't call her cheap...

"Grow, I command you!" by Leenechan
"Grow, I command you!", a photo by Leenechan on Flickr.

...even though she was! XD

Here's my reward for reaching my eighth writing goal, Dead Tired Cleo de Nile. I only had to write twelve pages for her, but it felt like a lot because I've started using a college-ruled notebook.

I'm thinking of taking a week off from writing. I've been working non-stop since January 27th! I've written about 200 handwritten pages, which typed up I'm guessing is about 80 or 90. I'm having a hard time making grammatical sentences, and I'm constantly having to dig into my thesaurus to avoid using the same adjectives over and over and over... It's only natural that I'd start to burn out after a while.

I think I need to refresh myself with a good book. I don't remember the last time I've read one of those!

I think that my prologue chapter is turning into a novella. I'm just gonna ride the wave and see how it turns out. It might become Book One in a saga, after all!

The prize at the end of the rainbow!

"Get me outta here!" by Leenechan
"Get me outta here!", a photo by Leenechan on Flickr.

And she sure is bright! It's 2.0/School's Out Lagoona!

I sure did have to write a lot to earn the right to debox her. Hey, she's a rare doll!

Going somewhere...slowly.

I've written sixteen pages toward my sixth goal. I haven't decided whether I should aim for the easier or harder target. I really want to debox that Lagoona! Other than the obvious idiocy of adding yet another doll to my already too-large collection, I can't really feel stupid about paying more than retail for her. 2.0 Lagoona is pretty much impossible to find. Plus, if I waited for a cheaper doll I might have ended up with one with defective face paint. I only saw one picture of a defective 2.0 Lagoona on flickr, and it was pretty terrifying.

Tonight we made a vegetable lasagna using the recipe from Cook's Illustrated's Italian Classics. For the veggies we used cremini mushrooms and rainbow chard. It was damn near perfect! I have to admit that at first the concept of a lasagna with mozzarella and no ricotta struck me as strange, but it really works! It was so much better than the crappy vegetable lasagna I've had in restaurants. One of them used broccoli as the main vegetable, and the dish was a nasty, waterlogged mess.

Kristen has been nursing a strange cold for past few days. It seems to have settled in her ears. I got it too, but I never progressed beyond the woozy/fatigued stage into the stuffy/sore throat congested ears stage. The same thing happened the last time there was an illness in the house. I never seem to get as sick as she does. I think it's because I'm on fire. On fire! XD

I put one of the extra gel refills Parker packages with their Jotter pens into an old red Jotter I found at the bottom of a drawer. It's a smooth, fast writer and doesn't transfer as much to your hand as the ballpoint cartridge, but it only works if you write in cursive. Maybe my mind and pen will work at the same speed for once...too bad I have really shitty penmanship...

The writing callus on my right ring finger is as big as a blueberry now. Yikes!

Flying cat is flying!!!

I was just about to sit down at the computer in my bedroom and write a nice intellectual blog post when Lucas came bouncing onto my bed with a toy mouse in his mouth. Too bad he didn't yell this time. He usually goes "Whoa whoa!" or "Ooooo!" or something. If I'm lucky, he'll growl. XD Silly kitty. Why does he have to be so bad? A few mornings ago he bit the hell out of my hand and then gave me the most loving expression ever.

He also has this really bad habit that he only indulges in when he feels truly dejected. I don't want to talk much about it...but I'll say that it involves his pink bear blanket, and for some reason he makes us watch.

I have a prize for my sixth writing goal! I traded 2.0 Draculaura to Kristen for this doll. She wasn't an expensive doll, so I'll be posting her soon enough. Kristen had bought her for a rerooting project, but she found her creepy looking. In the end, she got a nice Ghoul Spirit Ghoulia off eBay for a decent price, and had no use for this doll. I think she's pretty interesting! I don't find her hair too bad, so I won't have her rerooted.

I wonder how much luck I'm going to have finding that Howleen set. It seems that the dolls don't even come with stands. Argh...

The Valentine's Sweet.

So much more affordable than paying $40 for a custom box of Munson's chocolates!

I've been cooking for almost 15 years, and this was the first time I ever made homemade brownies. I probably screwed up the cheesecake swirl, but the brownies are moist, chocolatey and very, very rich. They also keep for 5 days in the refrigerator, which is pretty awesome.

I've written five pages toward my next goal. This goal is a cheap one, so expect to see a new doll soon! I bought her on sale because not many people like her, but hey, I think she's rather cute.


We got it good last night. Twenty-four hours later, the house still smells awful. Rather than the typical mildly offensive cabbage smell, this smells like someone dumped a huge pile of the worst take-out Chinese food they could find in front of our house and set it on fire! Have you ever been Omega Skunked before? It's so foul that it wakes you out of a sound sleep, and you'll be smelling it for more than a week!

Some small good news to report: we managed to find a 1.0 Frankie Stein on sale at Target's website. They were doing one per customer, and she lasted about 20 minutes. She was the first Monster High doll I fell in love with, even though I bought Phys Dead Ghoulia instead. Just the same, I let Kristen have her because she really wanted her. Also, I have four Frankies. Probably enough, right?

I hope Howleen/Clawdeen aren't too hard to find once they come out. I'm not going to have a lot of opportunities to look for them in the next few weeks. I strongly suspect that some Target employees have been buying out the dolls and scalping them. Eventually, people are going to stop buying them, right?

As of tonight, I've written 22 pages toward my third goal. Six pages of those are notes...but I'm counting them, because I don't want to discourage myself from planning ahead. You know that when you write one character saying something, then cross it out to make another character say something, then cross that out, it's time to start outlining! I wanted to write more, but I started feeling like one of those characters in a movie who points a gun at someone and pulls the trigger only to hear ::click click:: Out of bullets!

Ugh...I can still smell that skunk. Omega Skunk! :O

A Bump in the Road.

I only wrote three pages tonight. I ended up crossing half a page out. Boo! I think I'm going to have to do an outline for the rest of the chapter. I'm starting to lose my way...

We finally managed to find Garam Masala in the grocery store, so we made lentil dal with coconut milk for dinner tonight. It was pretty awesome, but I'm not posting pictures of it. I'm sure that someone would think of something nasty to say about how it looked. ^o^...I swear it tasted good!

It was hard to say goodbye to the chicken soup. We did freeze some of the stock, but I probably won't touch it for at least a week. I have to disagree with Cook's Illustrated's opinion on the quick 45-minute stock made with chicken leg quarters versus the 4-hour simmered stock that uses a whole chicken. The 4-hour stock is worlds better!

My favorite way to serve it is with the chicken meat, diced carrots, celery, tubettini or broken spaghetti (boiled separately and added at the end) and a generous amount of freshly ground black pepper. And don't forget the grated parmesan cheese! I guess that adding grated Parmesan or Romano cheese to soup is an Italian thing. We used to put cheese in our soup whenever we visited our Italian-American maternal grandparents. I learned to love a lot of food from them, like stuffed artichokes and broccoli rabe soup with polenta. I wonder how many people on my friends' list would refuse to eat so many veggies? XD

I didn't pick up many tastes from my father's family, unfortunately. Eastern-European food...me no likey!

I was talking with Kristen tonight about my dissatisfaction with Monster High and Lalaloopsy collecting. I compared it to some Dragon Ball Z fanfiction I read while I was in college about Vegeta killing all the other characters, then Final Flashing himself to death after he realized there was no one left to fight. Ha ha hah...

Cheating my way to the top.

"It's Operetta, y'all!" by Leenechan
"It's Operetta, y'all!", a photo by Leenechan on Flickr.

Well, that's really between me and myself, isn't it? I may not have written the thirty-two pages required for me to debox Nefera (I don't want to hear it) but I only needed to write twenty pages to debox Operetta. And debox I did. Now it begins anew...

She has typical Operetta hair issues, but she doesn't have wonky eyes! And her lip paint isn't smeared! Woo hoo! You always take a chance when you order one of these dolls online.

Maybe it's because of the mole, but I think that Operetta bears a striking resemblance to late actress Anne Francis. After all, that beauty mark was iconic.


Climbing up the hill...again.

I've written six pages toward my next goal so far this weekend. I hope I'm not tricking myself into writing nonsense just to fill a quota! Oh well, I'll just have to fix it up in the second draft...

I went to Target yesterday to see if they had stocked any of the new Monster High dolls. I figured I wouldn't be able to find anything, so I told myself I was going to buy tea and more Cracklin' Oat Bran. Unfortunately, the Monster High section was completely bare save for a single 2.0 Cleo. I don't need her, obviously. Other than that, nada. It's been nada all over for the past three weeks. I don't know if this is just a bad time, or if my area usually never gets anything. The only Monster High dolls I haven't had to order online were Skull Shores Abbey, Day at the Maul Frankie and Phys Dead Ghoulia.

They had a few Lalaloopsy Littles in stock, but only from the first wave. Did the second wave even come out yet? They had a Squirt Lil'Top that was in much better shape than the one I returned to TRU. I still didn't buy her. I guess the spell's been broken. Specs Reads-A-Lot is cuter than I thought, though! I didn't buy her, either. $16.99 still strikes me as pricey for such a small doll.

The Coral Sea Shells they had in the store had much darker hair than the one I own. I wonder if they applied the color change lacquer too thickly?

I have no idea when the Howleen/Clawdeen set is coming out. Some people say the end of February. I hate to think that set is going to be so hard to find, but if Target isn't restocking...I live only a ten minute drive for my local store, so it's disheartening to think that I won't have a prayer.

Ghoul of the Week: Part Four.

"I'm different!" by Leenechan
"I'm different!", a photo by Leenechan on Flickr.

It's Classroom Home Ick Frankie Stein!

She's my reward to myself for writing twenty-two pages of my novel this week. I actually wrote thirty-two, but I didn't start my reward system until Tuesday. I think that her outfit is a little silly, but her hair and makeup are beautiful. Frankie looks different with bangs/fringe, doesn't she?

Now I need to light a fire under my ass to get myself started again. What if I don't feel the need to open another Monster High doll right away?

Even compared to new and exotic dolls like Nefera de Nile, I love Frankie most of all.