Thursday, August 13, 2009

And now... some bad news

Our favorite, old reliable Dell laptop has been on the blink for the last couple days. Somehow we got a nasty virus that infected the computer something terrible, and now we can't go on the internet there anymore!

It's really sad, because this is the computer my sibs and I would most always go for when we wanted to do stuff. It had faster and smoother internet and the picture and sound quality was perfect. My sister and I worked on Photoshop projects with it, and we even took it with us to Boston so we'd be able to Skype with our family! The laptop I'm writing with now is pretty okay, but it's just not the same ~,~. We've been talking about a buying a new computer, since we've tried all we could think of.

The part that sucks the most is that Annette and I might have accidentally caused the infection ourselves. We'd gotten into the Simpsons recently, a show that up until now I'd thought wasn't funny at all, but it kind of is. So there's a website where you can see all the episodes ever made, in their entirety, for free. We'd watched several episodes before without anything happening. This time something happened. I still feel really terrible about it. Now, even though I can see the humor in this cartoon show, I once again think that the Simpsons are stupid. *pout*

Another thing. My parents have brought to our attention a pretty sobering thought. Annette and my cockatiel birds, Sasha and Sammy, have been our pets for nearly 3 years. We love them dearly, despite their various annoying tendancies. We never clipped their wings, so whenever we take them out to play they always fly free and it's a challenge to coax them back into their cage. They land on people's heads, their sharp claws hurt for those not all that used to them, and since we came back from Boston they still get all hissy at us. But they have their sweet moments sometimes. ^,^

Anyway, every time we travel, it's always a hassle to find someone to take care of them. And Annette and I are growing up. We've got futures and dreams to think about without worrying what's going to happen to our pets. We haven't made any plans yet, but... we've talked about someday soon getting someone else to take care of Sasha and Sammy. ~,~ It's really a sad thing to consider.

Alright, that's all I got. I won't depress you anymore.

What's been happening...

Okay, I think it's about time I wrote another post. I'll admit that I've been kind of distracted recently. Not only by what's happening in real life around now, but by all the awesome posts everyone else has been putting up in the last couple days! It's just soooo much fun! On August 11th was this big event up in Orem, Utah, this "Authorpalooza." I was sad that I was unable to attend, because (apparently) more than 30 authors were there, in one place! Unbelievable!!! James Dashner was there, and he took pictures with Laura Bingham and J. Scott Savage. Awesome. ^,^

Also, my close friend Jacoby went to the event and got his picture with Lisa Mangum. He had such a funny story about her signing his name. (Hey J.N., did you know that Dashner has a picture of you on his post too? Ha ha. You're up there with all his other author friends. ^_~) Thanks to his post there, I visited Magum's site, and got a preview of the first chapter of her book, The Hourglass Door. Awesomeness!

I was also distracted by another giveaway contest James is holding for 3 more ARCs of Maze Runner. (Not that I'm interested, 'cause I'm already perfectly happy with my own copy. What would I do with another one?) This contest lasts until Friday, and already there've been 110 comments on it! In my long 8 months of blogging, I've never seen such an amazing feat! (Oh yeah, almost forgot. Yesterday was my 8th monthiversary. ^,^)

Another contest being held in the Blog-World is on Dave's site, LGBRS. It's to win a free signed copy of Alvor, by Laura Bingham! (I've talked about her before. Do you remember her?) I know I've won one free book already, but this is so cool! The rules are pretty easy. I think I'm in good running. The contest spans over 3 weeks and will end on September 7th. (The exact same day as my birthday! Is this a sign? =P)

Alright, I think that's quite enough news about the blogosphere. Now here are the coolest things that have been happening in my corner of the world:
  • Tuesday was Pizza Day again. This tradition is getting a little shaky nowadays (I'm not sure whether we're supposed to have it on the first tuesday or the last tuesday anymore), but we had two pies today and they were deeeeelish! (I had to blog about this, because I always like seeing J.N. Future Author's reaction whenever I talk about our pizza. ^,^)
  • My youner brother, Adam, has gotten started on reading Maze Runner! So far I believe he's on chapter... wait, I'll go ask him to make sure... *asks*... Oh yeah, chapter 4. He seems to be liking it so far, too. (I knew he would. ^_^)
  • I recently finished reading Farworld: Water Keep, by J. Scott Savage. It was pretty neat. I should post a review for that later. Funny that I haven't gotten to it yet. (Well, I was distracted by all the other blogs, remember?) Anyway, I'm kind of starting to think that I've been obsessed with reading a little too much these days, so I'm going to resolve not to think about other people's books quite so much and start concentrating on my own novel. I don't think I've worked on it in a couple weeks or so. Sad, I know. ~,~ I'll probably have to ask for some of your help with it. I think that would be a fun idea, huh? How to do it, though... Don't worry, I'll come up with something later.
I wanted to list more, but I think that would make this go on for too long. I'll put up another post later. Unfortunately, that will be where I list a couple of things that are... bad news. (Dun duh duuuun!)

Hope you enjoyed this update. Check out all the links I made! They're really good reads, the lot of them. ^,^ (Except if you've already heard of Laura Bingham, you don't have to see the last link. That's just one of my old blog posts where I talk about her.)

Thursday, August 6, 2009


Yes!!! I got it just a couple hours ago! Can you honestly believe it? Because I sure can't. But it's true!!! See? Here's the proof that I have it! Look at how happy I am!!! ^_^
And yes, my ARC is presently sitting in my lap, just waiting to be read. Oh, I'm just so happy to have it now! The mailman sure took his time with this baby. ~,~ It was almost torture waiting for it!... Oh, alright, I was exaggerating there. ^,~

Man, I wasn't even expecting it when I went out to get the mail... Well, I mean I was, since I was going out to get it, but I wasn't getting my hopes up too much. When I pulled the package out of our box and spotted James Dashner's name in the corner there... *Whooo!* I just squealed with delight before literally shooting like a bullet back into the house.

(Another detail: it was drizzling just a little bit at the time. It wasn't too much, but you could say that I rushed inside that quickly partly so there wouldn't be a chance of getting my precious copy wet, and partly because I was so excited to show the book off to my family!)
Wow, what a way to celebrate publishing my 100th blog post ever! So special! This is probably one of the best things to ever happen to me while using Blogger! Hey, can you believe how many exclamation marks I'm using in this entire post?! It's insane, it's crazy!!!

Okay, okay. I'll try to calm down now.

Let me just say that I'm really grateful to all the people out there who have supported me here, on my blog, right from the start. Or as close to the start as they could possibly get. I've formed lots of unique* friendships on Blogger that I couldn't possibly have made anywhere else. In fact, I've probably made more friends now than at any other point in my life! I hope these friendships will continue for a long time to come, and I hope that in the future I will be worthy enough to meet most of you in physical form someday.
* ^_~

You all know who you are. The order doesn't really matter. You're all really good friends to me anyways.
If you need me, I'll be in my room... with the door locked... reading and reading until my head flys off or my brain melts. Or until I fall asleep. (Which is probably the likliest thing that's bound to happen, I think. Don't you?)

(By the way, I'm hoping that most of you listed here will do me the honor of commenting here. Do not disappoint me. ^,~)

Monday, August 3, 2009

Randomness (also post # 99)

  • A couple days ago my siblings finally finished watching the 3rd volume of Animaniacs. So much fun! It's a shame that there aren't any more Yakko, Wakko and Dot cartoons available, but I saw a rumor on Wikipedia that there will be a 4th DVD collection with the last 24 episodes of their show will be released sometime in 2009. I don't really believe that, but at the very least, I hope it comes out in 2010.
  • Speaking of Animaniacs, I've recently learned all the words to "Wakko's America," where Wakko sings all the 50 states and their respective capitols. It's amazing. With me memorizing "Wakko's America" as well "Yakko's World," I'm probably a master of geography! Now, if Annette can just teach me the Presidents song, I can be a master of American history too!
  • The other day we had coupons for pizza, so my sibs and I went and got a medium pie with olives on top. It's a funny story. When the guy who took our order had the box ready for us, he said "Alright, here's your anchovy pizza." It was a small place, and we were the only ones there, so we were pretty confused. "We didn't order anchovies, we ordered olives!" Then we opened the box to see the pizza, and what do you know? There were olives on it. ^_^ The guy was just playing a prank on us. "If only we had those security cameras. You should have seen your faces," he chuckled. Well, I'm glad I'm able to take a joke like that.
Of course, the real reason I'm blogging right now is that I'm really itching to get that ARC of Maze Runner right around now. Now that a few days have gone by, I'm starting to feel this tense-nervous-excited feeling that won't go away. I've been able to ignore it for the last week, but my book should come in any day now! I just can't stand the waiting!!!

I wonder what I'll do the moment I get it in the mail?... Well, I'll certainly be ready with a new blog post. Isn't it really cool that my next post will be #100? I think it is. How special that'll be! Oh, I can just barely wait. ~_~

You know something weird? We haven't gotten our MAD subscription for a while now, not since their 500th issue for June. But somehow I've got this idea in my head that at the same time I get Maze Runner, we'll have the next issue of MAD magazine too. I don't know if this is just silly wishful thinking or what, but I believe that both will come in at the same time. Wouldn't it be something if I'm right? I'd be like a psychic or something! Anyway, I just thought I'd put my prediction up here. If I happen to get this correct, then you'll believe me when I say "I just knew they would come in at the same time!" Of course, odds are that I'll be wrong, but still. Isn't it interesting that this thought is so firm in my head?

Sunday, August 2, 2009

A nice story

No, sorry, I didn't write it myself. Someone emailed it to me. But it's a very nice parable. You just have to pretend that inanimate objects are able to talk. :P

An elderly Chinese woman had two large pots, each hung on the ends of a pole which she carried across her neck. One of the pots had a crack in it while the other pot was perfect and always delivered a full portion of water. At the end of the long walks from the stream to the house, the cracked pot arrived only half full. For a full two years this went on daily, with the woman bringing home only one and a half pots of water.

Of course the perfect pot was proud of its accomplishment. But the poor cracked pot was ashamed of its own imperfection, and miserable that it could only do half of what it had been made to do. After two years of what it perceived to be bitter failure, it spoke to the woman one day by the stream. "I am ashamed of myself, because this crack in my side causes water to leak out all the way back to your house."

The old woman smiled, "Did you notice that there are flowers on your side of the path, but not on the other pot's side?"

"That's because I have always known about your flaw, so I planted flower seeds on your side of the path, and every day while we walk back, you water them. For two years I have been able to pick these beautiful flowers to decorate the table. Without you being just the way you are, there would not be this beauty to grace the house."

Each of us has our own unique flaw.
But it's the cracks and flaws we each have that make our lives together so very interesting and rewarding.

We just have to take each person for what they are and look for the good in them.