Big plans, changes underway

Obligatory statement that I have been terrible at updates here. Excuse for such behavior: school. Declaration that things will change very shortly…

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A new project: nanonovels

Ladies and gentlemen, get all the information about my latest writing project, the nanonovel, at their new page on Drawing Coffee. I posted the first nanonovel today on my Twitter (which you can read the to right of this post, in the sidebar beneath my photo), as well as a link to the appropriate comments page. Read! Discuss!

I’m trying to decide how often to post these nanonovels; what are your thoughts? Twice a week? Three days a week?

The dark(ly humorous) side of origami

I posted some new writing up at Drawing Coffee. Go check it out, it’s called “The Art of Forgetting: Making an Origami Lotus”.

What I learned today

How to make a boutonnière. This is comprised of a purple matso (Matsumoto aster), solidago (a variety of goldenrod), and some leatherleaf for greenery, which I put together and my boss helped with somewhat (more mechanics than design, design was all me).

What the deal is

I’ve had to go to bed early (10:30p, no joke) for work recently, so I haven’t had much time to sit down and write about what’s going on.

Went to St. Louis last weekend for Suraj’s parents’ annual puja at their house. As is my habit, I went to the Tower Grove Farmer’s Market Saturday morning while Suraj was helping his parents to get ready. My boss at the flower shop asked if we (me and the designer) if we would take home some merchandise to get kids to test it out so we could take pictures of them. I’m not sure she realized how awkward that had the potential to be (“Hi, can I take pictures of your children? I work at a flower shop”), but dedicated employee that I am, I brought the merchandise to the market to provide parents with far too much information about the shop and ask if maybe please if you’re okay with it can I please take some photos that we may potentially use for advertising of your kid riding this bike around please? Surprisingly, I was moderately successful (moderately I think only because I had a limited amount of time before I had to head back to meet up with Suraj and go pick up the food for the puja). I also picked up some bulgur wheat at the market and a mocha macaroon <3.

The puja went well, and Suraj’s mom gave me more awesome clothes she was getting rid off. We capped (or topkilled, if you prefer) the night with some O’Fallon Gold and hit the hay since we were both pretty tired.

But Sunday! Sunday, we decided to get brunch buffet at St. Louis’s Shangri-La Diner, which hands-down the best homestyle diner food I’ve ever eaten. Of course, the best part is that it’s all vegetarian/vegan. Suraj took me to dinner there several weeks ago, which entailed veg meatloaf (seitan) and vegan gyros, homemade strawberry limeade (much better than the shit you get at Sonic), and chilled strawberry soup. The buffet this week consisted of veg hash browns, scrambled eggs with cheddar and veg facon, tofu and seitan scramble, fresh fruit, and homemade berry compote with fresh brioche bread french toast.

Working at the flower shop has been extremely busy this week between a large order for an event out at the Crowne Plaza on Wednesday morning and the USTA meet at the convention center all week. In the down time between people buying things from our booth, I’m either reading or making origami, and have found kids utterly fascinated by the latter.

In going to the gym after work yesterday evening, I also found out that I can easily read on an exercise bike. It was nice to spend an uninterrupted hour reading, so Dune has officially been completed. An interesting and enjoyable sci-fi classic, although I had several issues with Herbert’s prose and a couple of judgment calls/assertions throughout. Also a terrible fucking way to end a book. I’m still reading Snow and picked up The Omnivore’s Dilemma again seriously. It helps me to be reading about three books at one time–one literary, one intensely captivating, and one nonfiction. That way, when the literary one gets too intense/depressing (and let’s be real, all literary fiction is depressing), I can switch to the captivating “trashy” one (arguably, Dune is not very trashy unless you talk to a literary scholar), and when I need a break from both to satisfy my need to learn something new by reading the nonfiction. I might post a poll or something on here so someone else can decide what I should read next–I have too many books and often get overwhelmed by what to start.

Two more days of work this week. I’d like to tweak the energy bar recipe I use to include some dried cranberries, but we’ll see if I even have the energy to start.

More Drawing Coffee revisions

Spent this evening revising the Legal, Opinions, and Creative pages at Drawing Coffee.

In other news, didn’t have to wear my ankle brace today at work and didn’t have to take any NSAIDs, despite biking 50 minutes at the gym tonight. Also playing Song Summoner on my iPod while biking was pretty sweet.

Redesigning Drawing Coffee

More from me later this week, but in the meantime, check out what I’ve been working on. I redesigned the Drawing Coffee site, and I’m working on revising the pages so they are both more informational and more professional–so far, only the “about” page is done, but I think it’s much better than what I had before. And for those of you into punishing yourselves, expect to see a bunch of my academic essays posted to DC in the near future.

Flours

I worked at the flower shop Thursday and Friday last week and have worked there Tuesday and today; I’ll be there through the remainder of the next two and a half weeks, more than likely. I’ve been learning to do the jobs of two people in about four days since they are both going on vacation. I’ll be taking customers and phone orders as well as maintaining flowers and plants in the store, making deliveries, and doing other in-store business–making cards, working with ribbon, wrapping and foiling things…the list goes on and on. Both days last week I was in from 10a – 5p. This week it’s been 11a – 5p, but since I’ll be taking over deliveries completely starting tomorrow, I’ll be in from 9a – 3p (hopefully, though it may be later depending upon the number of orders we get). Hopefully this explains the lack of updates, but to make up for it, I’m anticipating having some stories/thoughtful posts regarding things that have happened so far.

In the meantime, I’d also like to get back to working on a piece I am writing about origami lotuses. I also taught myself how to make cranes this week and re-learned butterflies. I bought a 300 pack of tiny origami sheets this weekend while I was in St. Louis and have been using it to assemble an army of tiny cranes to go with my tiny lotuses.

That is a lily in the back left there, it was hard as fuck to make

I tested my ankle again yesterday at the gym by biking for twenty-five minutes and doing a couple of sets of calf raises. It was a little irritated when I got home but was fine today at work, so it seems like things are getting better. I can’t wait to get back to running.

Lastly, remember that thing I said about sending me pictures? SEND ME SOME ALREADY.

A fusion of life and work

Woke up at a normal person time of morning, showered, and dashed off to the Springfield farmers’ market downtown. Much as I would have enjoyed hazelnut shortbread cookies, sweet focaccia (focaccia with powdered sugar and preserves/jam), or a massive cinnamon roll, I abstained. It was worth it to be out in the humidity just to smell the baskets of strawberries for sale. I sat in Andiamo to do some work, which meant e-mailing some people while listening to the rest of Morning Edition and deciding what I will need to do over the course of the year to get tech-savvy and marketable. I contacted someone from the local chapter of the Association of Fundraising Professionals today about possible learning opportunities for grant writing skills, though I am still somewhat unsure how I feel about it.

Got my haircut on Monday but decided today after giving it a chance that my bangs are not quite right; trying to see if I can get that fixed before the weekend.

Figured since I was already out and it was sunny and hot  and we weren’t going to get wiped off the face of the planet by torrential rain like the last two days, I would wash my car (though the rain at least had the courtesy to take care of the squirrel piss my car had been subjected to just prior to my neck getting pissed on as well). The pay-and-spray (ha) I go to usually is right down the street from an oil change place, so I took care of that too and felt pretty accomplished by the time I got home. Later on, it rained harder than it has the rest of the week and hailed on my car. At least I didn’t plant my wildflower seeds today–maybe Friday, since there is still a 40% chance of scattered thunderstorms here tomorrow and that has meant guaranteed monsoons the last three days.

Lunch, tons of rain and flooding all over town, late getting to the gym. Lifted tons of weights today since my ankle pain came back with a vengeance shortly after lunch. Ibuprofen seems not to have any effect, so I’m sitting here with a back-size ice pack strapped to my leg while I write.

Also, I lucked into a part-time on-and-off job for the next few months. Jackie called me while I was on my way to get my oil changed and mentioned that she and her daughter are leaving to visit another of her daughters in California for a few weeks (which I knew, but I guess I didn’t put two and two together), so the flower shop where her daughter works would need a part-time assistant during that time. I’m supposed to be at the shop at 10am tomorrow for some on-the-job training.

Business stuff–I plan to start taking a lot more photos as writing starters. I’m also probably going to start asking a lot more questions of anyone reading about what kind of content you’d be interested in seeing from me. I know a lot of you take your own photos, also, and I would love to work some writing out for things you’ve photographed. If you’re comfortable sharing your pictures with me, I’d love to generate writing for them (particularly because I won’t know anything about them, where they are, why you took them–that is the whole point. Don’t tell me anything about them), and I will post them to Drawing Coffee as they are completed with full credit/reference to you as the photographer in whatever format you choose. If you would like to discuss this further/send me your damn photos already, I can be reached at chelsea dot fiddyment at gmail dot com. Quick note: I’d prefer they are not posed (or naked) photos of you, especially if I know you pretty well. Maybe someday I will write a story about all you lovelies, but for now, it’s just too distracting. Places/stuff/unknown (clothed; don’t violate their privacy!) people preferred.

Final question: if your favorite writer had a Twitter, what kinds of things would you want to read from them? Would you care? Why or why not? Talk amongst yourselves.

Some little kids

are screaming at Barnes and Noble, where I am working. SHUT UP

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