LADIES.

(Please read the title of this post like a swaggart walking into a room full of women.)

Sometime in the fall I decided to stop reading books by men. Maybe forever, maybe for a year–I don’t know. Most of my favorite books are already by women, but I tend to read books by men because they are just so available. I want to give women the spotlight in my own life, especially since we so rarely can wrestle it away from the status quo.

There are exceptions, of course (currently: for men that I know, for ongoing series I’m already reading, for rereads, and for research), but in general I am only reading lady authors these days.

IT IS GREAT.

Mind you, I don’t have a lot of time during which I can actually concentrate enough to read. (I think it’s important to distinguish between not having time–I have tons–and not having usable time.) My extremely modest goal is to read 24 books this year and I’m already behind.

I started out the year with a reread of one of my all-time favorite novels, Geek Love by Katherine Dunn. I believe this is the fourth time I have read it in ~19 years. It is one of the best novels I know of, and unlike my usual favorites. Although, I’m not sure that my usual favorites really fit a pattern? I will have to think about that some more. If you would like to think about it, too, a few of my most favorite books are We Have Always Lived In The Castle, My Antonia, and Code Name Verity.

I am keeping a running list of books I would like to read. I’m making use of my library system and of my kindle, though I have not yet managed to navigate my library’s e-lending service (I can’t stand the idea of e-books expiring). I have so many friends with books coming out this year that I could practically read books only by ladies I know. Not quite, but nearly–and I have to say, that is nice.

I am currently racing against my library due dates. I put holds on three books with varied wait times, and they all got to my local branch together. OF COURSE. And two of my friends’ books came out a week ago and I haven’t even glanced at them! The library books are Laura Ingalls Wilder: a Writer’s Life, which I am currently reading; Boy, Snow, Bird; and Girl Defective. The friend books are Tunnel Vision by Susan Adrian and Please Remain Calm by Courtney Summers. I need to read Susan’s book by the 14th because she will be in town for a teen author event.

I am not currently limiting any other media to women only, but my acquaintance Marya Gates is. She is only watching films by female filmmakers (writers and/or directors) in 2015, and she’s blogging and vlogging about it. There’s a lovely interview with her about it right here. (We began our projects independently of each other and I think it’s really cool that we both noticed the same problem and came up with similar solutions.)

[Please note: all Amazon links are affiliate links. I have linked to the kindle editions, if applicable.]

Fireside Collection

firesidetrio

That’s Hot Cocoa on the left, Hot Buttered Rum in the center, and Hot Toddy on the right.

I am so pleased with the way this collection turned out, even if it took me a liiiiiittle bit longer than planned. (They were supposed to be ready for Thanksgiving, 2013. Yeah.)

I set Hot Cocoa aside for a long time because I’d been working on it the last time I saw Laurie and she gave me advice on some design elements and I just couldn’t work on it after she died. But it’s done now, and this spring I will wear it to the noir festival, which I’ll be attending without her for the first time ever.

So. I dedicate this set to Laurie. I miss you, lady.

Seraphina & Anjelica

seraphina-set

New patterns! Whoo!

seraphina-front2

This is Seraphina. I originally came up with this design in 2011, and submitted it for publication with a third party. It was accepted, and matching bloomers were requested.

anjelica-main

This is Anjelica. The matching bloomers.

The third party publication fell through, and after two long years I got my publication rights and samples back. Ta-da!

The patterns are available on Ravelry individually or as a set.

xmas time is here (and gone again)

ships

When Sam saw his new pirate ship, which we had told him was really expensive when he admired it at TRU (it is really expensive), he shouted, “Aww, you had enough money! Thanks!” and we both cried. Because we want our children to understand that money isn’t infinite, but, you know. He is eight. We don’t want him worrying about it, either.

ring

This is what Sammy picked out for me (the knotted one). He also gave me earrings that I failed to get a photo of.

batty

Grace thinks I am as cool as Lily Munster. <3 <3 <3

kinopoiskru-alien-592084

Will found an ALIEN t-shirt with the original poster on it (just the top part). He gave me some other stuff too but I am really excited about the shirt.

jeanjacket

I took some of my Christmas cash to Old Navy to buy jeans and spotted a rack of jean jackets. I have wanted one for years, but once they are big enough to fit my chest, they’re loose in the shoulders and billow out in back. BUT NOT THIS ONE. I assume it is made of sorcery and fairy dust.

We gave Gracie a razor scooter of her very own, and both kids a few smaller things (video games, books, Anna and Elsa dolls). Our families and friends gave us all nice things. Now we are gearing up for Grace to turn FIVE tomorrow. We got her a booster seat, because she has all but outgrown her carseat, and an art box just like the one she bought for her friend Viv and keeps saying, “I wish I had one…” Will and Sam are out right now so Sam can buy her a gift.

Time is moving really fast. And yet my Docs are still nowhere near broken in.

grinch

My favorite page from my favorite Christmas book, and an apt description of me 75% of the time. (The other 25% of the time I am sleeping.)

It’s 1991

B5HTY-PIQAAnE5g

Holy shit, you guys. I know Docs are hard to break in, but it’s been 20+ years and I guess I just couldn’t remember HOW hard they are to break in. This is the stiffest leather ever.

(THAT’S WHAT SHE SAID.)

I’m going to have to get the left shoe stretched by a cobbler because the toe box is tight. The length is good and the right shoe fits just right, but the left shoe is painful after a little while. (I talked this through with the salesman. He assured me stretching is the way to go.)

BRB, I need some babydoll dresses and flannels.

So this happened today.

A thing that I do not recommend is ever driving your car, especially in Los Angeles, because if you do drive your car in Los Angeles, you will go through approximately one million potholes, and your passenger side tire will develop sidewall bubbles without your knowledge, and one day you will be innocently gassing up with your last $10 until payday, and you will check your tire pressure and see those bubbles, and your brain will send out the DANGER WILL ROBINSON signal, because sidewall bubbles mean that your tire could EXPLODE AT ANY MOMENT, and you will tearfully call your dad and ask him to buy you tires for Christmas instead of the lovely shoes you wanted.

If your dad is anything like my dad, he will send you money for tires AND shoes and you will cry a lot and then you will go buy tires and shoes. (Also there was a little left over and I got a bottle of whiskey for us and some groceries for J down the hall.)

Bad Idea Bucket List

Quick! I only have three and a half years left before I turn 40. I need to get some youthful indiscretions out of the way, and I need your help to think of them. (Feel free to suggest things that I may have already done or that I am super unlikely to ever do. I am…not very serious about this.)

  1. Do donuts on the neighbor’s lawn (or wherever).
  2. Pierce my nose.

New-Old Digs

This blog has been Through the Looking Glass since late 2003 (I think–it was Scratching at the 8-ball before that). Last week I impulsively changed it and I am DELIGHTED with the new name. (I will keep sporadically changing the tagline and you will keep not noticing, so I shan’t mention that.)

I am considering pepping up the template a little bit to go with it, but I kind of love the simplicity of this one and also I hate change that requires work. So. Any thoughts?