Mid-November 2015

Yeah, it’s been a long time since I visited this site, much less wrote a post. Much less published one.


And I’m neck-deep in NaNoWriMo again, so I don’t have a lot of time to be crafting blog posts and finding images and putting in links and responding to comments (though I will. Promise).  But NaNo is going well: I’m currently up to 36,000+ words and the month is only half over. Moreover, I know where this story is going and I feel confident that not only will I reach 50,000 in plenty of time, I will also have a completed or mostly-complete rough draft of a novel that I will then be able to polish and start shopping around to agents. That “completing the rough draft in a month” was the part I had trouble with before. Instead, I was stretching out scenes and writing miles of dialogue in order to reach my word counts.

proclaimers do nanowrimoNot this time. This time, I have a story skeleton, and I’m just trying to get enough padding to drape over it, with the skin to complete and the finishing touches to come later. I am psyched.

As for perfume, after a period of several months when I wasn’t interested in testing anything new at all and forget writing about it, well, I’m back. 🙂 Have been testing some newer perfumes and some that aren’t newly released but are new to me, and that’s been pretty cool. Hope to have some reviews coming in December.

I could do a “fall perfumes” post for 2015, but every single thing on it would be something I’ve mentioned in previous “fall perfumes” posts. Quick rundown, in case you missed those posts and are not interested in hunting them down: Cuir de Lancome, Smell Bent One, Donna Karan Black Cashmere, Guerlain Shalimar Light, Givenchy Organza Indecence, Parfums de Nicolai Le Temps d’une Fete, and Ralph Lauren Safari. (Well, no, I’ve recommended Safari before but I don’t think for fall. This just in: Safari is one of those things I have fallen madly in love with no matter the season. )

The PCHS band at a football game in October. That's Gaze nearly front and center, with the silver baritone horn. Photo by Fritz Streff.
The PCHS band at a football game in October. That’s Gaze nearly front and center, with the silver baritone horn. Photo by Fritz Streff.

The marching band just finished another successful season. Unfortunately, they juuuuust missed receiving a Superior rating at their state marching assessment, so they won’t be a Virginia Honor Band this year. However, I have no doubt that next year will be a banner year. This year’s show was “The Madness of an Imaginary World,” an Alice in Wonderland theme, with original music, voiceover, and fiendishly difficult drill. (I sometimes wonder if a less difficult show might have gotten them that Superior. But I’m not the director.) The show had to grow on me, but it did grow, and I was very proud of “my kids.” By its final iteration, the show included not only an Alice running across the tops of the drums and dancing with one of the percussion guys, but an “off-with-their-heads” maneuver by the trombone section. It was fun.

Chris, Cole, Gaze, Jake, and Noah (part of the varsity team), at the regional meet. Photo by David Gravely.
Chris, Cole, Gaze, Jake, and Noah (part of the varsity team), at the regional meet. Photo by David Gravely.

Gaze withdrew early on from Governor’s School, after he decided that he did not really want to go on to college to study math or hard sciences. His skills tend to lie in more “soft sciences” like psychology and economics, and he’s not interested in engineering or medical school either. So when we found out that he was miserable, and that the high school offers many, many more AP courses than they used to when Bookworm was there, we decided that it would be best for him to refocus on his strengths instead of staying up half the night to do coursework in subjects he didn’t enjoy.

One-shoe Taz Sept 2015Gaze and Taz both had a good cross-country season. Taz, as a 9th grader, lost a shoe partway through a race, early in the season, but finished well, and his times continued to improve all season. Gaze’s times improved too but not as much as he had hoped. All the same, though, I’m very proud of them and the team in general. The boys’ team did win their conference and finished 10th of 24 in the region. (Check out those ripped quads on ma boy there. Beast legs, man.  😉 )

Bookworm has been so busy with her class schedule this semester that she hasn’t had much opportunity to do anything with the band at college. She’s competed in Ultimate Frisbee tournaments with her team, but I don’t think she’s even had as much time to spend with that group as she’d have liked. But here’s a shot of her being awesome, ’cause she is. Yale Ramona Coffee Cup tournament, 2015

The CEO recently ran for the county Board of Supervisors and won his district. He’ll finish his term on the School Board next month, and take over the retiring supervisor’s seat in January.

I’m so proud of all of them. Heck, I guess I could say that I’m proud of myself too.

So. ‘Sup with y’all?


10 thoughts on “Mid-November 2015”

  1. YAY!! You’re back and it was excellent to have a little peek back into your life.
    Can I ask if the Safari you have fallen madly for is current or old?
    Portia xx

    1. Yeah, I’m back!

      The Safari I first tried was a mini of parfum, and I didn’t like it. It was too sweet. But then bought a partial bottle of what was labeled as “cologne spray” on ebay, because a friend from NST told me I should try that original version. Then the bottle arrived and it wasn’t cologne, it was EdP (i.e., not vintage), and I loved it right away. Bought another partial bottle, this time “cologne spray,” which has the date 1989 on the bottom sticker, so it must either be an original issue or made very shortly after that.

      The upshot of all of this is that I love both bottles and don’t see a lot of difference between them. The EdP has a little more galbanum emphasis, which is wonderful because I love galbanum so much – but I don’t know that I could tell which was which without looking carefully.

  2. Heya! Yer back!

    I’m both envious and congratulatory re your psychedness with NaNoWriMo.

    And eager to read the reviews.

    And going “Hmm” about Safari. I don’t think I’ve ever smelled it.

    1. Yay! I am currently at 38,349 with NaNo… however, I’ve determined that I’m only about halfway through the narrative so my rough draft should wind up being 75-80K. Hope I can get there by the end of the month (but if I don’t, then I’ll be so close to finished that I will call it a success).

      Safari is wonderful. I didn’t like it at first because I was expecting it to be a cool green like No. 19 or Silences or Heure Exquise, but it is instead a wonderful warm green. Not exactly like Le Temps d’une Fete – it is more formal and more “perfumey,” but a lovely golden green.

  3. Lovely to have you here. Band, frisbee, running – it’s all good. Are you singing with a group this year? It’s so wise to let Gaze play to his own strengths. A dear friend is leaving the university where I work, for a position at VA Tech. Our huge loss, their huge gain – but I think they know that, whereas my university is clueless. Sigh. Wearing my favorite perfumes is the perfect distraction from world problems I cannot solve and closer sadness I cannot change. Thanks for writing.

    1. Oh, yes, still singing. Concert in about 10 days.

      Virginia Tech does try, I think, to get good instructors. I didn’t go there, but it’s a good school. Which department/college does your friend teach in?

      1. Not a prof, an admin – the new Transit/Parking Director. Positively a delightful personality. Introduce yourself, and tell her Jan from UMass sent you.

  4. I was looking at some older announcements on NST and decided to see what’s up with mals’ blog and yay!

    Did you end up using “Salvation Taco”? 🙂

  5. You’re here! Glad to see that you’re writing anyway and hope you can end the story the way you want to and find the agent you want as well. Agents! Always a story there!

    Have you tried the new Miu Miu? Not so bad actually.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *