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Finding Myself A Brand New Lover

Did anyone immediately think of THIS when hearing that post title?

Excuse me for a minute while I recall my days of rollerskating and boy ogling.

And giggling…lots of giggling.

In stonewashed jeans.

But not rolled up. I never followed that trend.

Ok,  leaving nineteen-eighty-whatever and arriving in the here and now, I’m still happily married and all – but my summer fling with a Sony E-Reader has taken on a new character: she’s  sexy, she’s spicy, and she’s dressed in red pleather. Actually, it’s more of a burgundy. Yes, I said she. Maybe the new Sony reader felt feminine to me because she is the exact color of my favorite toe nail polish, but I have to say, her wardrobe choice embarrasses me a little.  As a red head myself, I am aware that certain colors just are a no-no…it simply ain’t pretty.

And heads up, whoever chooses these combos – red and burgundy…eck.

Meet Miss Scarlett
Meet Miss Scarlett

This picture doesn’t do the color clashing justice; but I assure you, it is abrasive on the eyes.

The cover is really neither here nor there, though; especially since SB Sarah was kind enough to point out some of the lovely accessories available for the Sony 505, including Skins! Yes!

If you recall, my initial lusty summer fling developed an issue with getting turned on, and SB Sarah stepped in to save the day; alerting Sony to the problem.

Within 48 hours I had a new e-book to test drive. Which is waaaaay awesome (sorry, going back to the 80’s there again) but makes me stop and wonder just how accommodating Sony would be about an issue like this were I your average consumer (and not one of the lucky 30?).

But I didn’t worry too long – I had reading to do and stuff.

So, my two readers sat down for tea to discuss things a bit.

sony e-reader tea

And no, I didn’t actually set up the whole “tea” thing on purpose – I’m wierd enough to have my dining room table pre-set for tea (hey, I like the way it looks), but not so wierd as to plot a scenario in which 2 of my electronic devices meet for tea (though give me a few more years raising my 2 red headed daughters, and I might be ready to board that crazy train) – actually, I saw the teacup in the background of the pic and the scenario wrote itself.

So Miss Scarlett explained to the Silver Bullet that it was time for him to head off into the sunset. She tried to let him down gently. I think the dude understood – because he gave me no trouble when I had to add Miss S as an authorized device and then started loading books onto her.

I was a tad concerned that adding a new e-reader on my computer/Sony store  and getting books I had already bought onto her  was going to be tricky – but it was a b-uh-reeze.  Within 10 minutes of the new reader arriving at my doorstep I had the thing recognized, authorized, loaded, and ready to roll read. The only thing that took a second was the e-books I had borrowed from the library. I had to plug the Silver Bullet back in, remind Adobe Digital Edition that I had borrowed these 2 books, then plug Miss Scarlett in, authorize her, and badda-bing (how would YOU spell that?) with a drag and drop,  the borrowed e-books were on both readers.

Sony allows you to authorize up to 6 items – so having access to e-books you have purchased on your computer, laptop, netbook, e-reader, cell phone, and (shhhh!) work computer – should not be an issue. At the moment, I have both e-readers installed and authorized – but before the weekend is out I plan to de-authorize the Silver Bullet, pack his broke ass up, and ship him back to SB Sarah.

Miss Scarlett and I are looking forward to spending the rest of the summer in a wine-induced haze of girlfriendy bliss.

A Comment on Costumes

I had planned on doing a very helpful and informative post about making travel arrangements for your Disney trip, including airline choices and use of Disney’s Magical Express, but it’s been a long couple of days and I’m tired – and we’re going to the Museum of Science and Industry in the morning to see You-Know-Who.

Really, we are. There’s a big Harry Potter exhibit currently at the museum, I think it will be a lot of fun. Once we get past the whole driving into the city and parking thing.

So back to today’s Disney post  – I also planned to talk about packing – what I found to be the most useful, what never ended up getting unpacked, space saving ideas – etc. But again, I’m tired, and I have 2/3 of a book left that I need to finish before Monday night’s book club meeting.

So I just want to say 1 thing.

If you are packing for a trip to Disney World, and are fretting over whether or not to pack the costumes – let me make this easy for you…

DO IT.

It is so worth it, and if you’re like me and bought a lot of the princess and fairy costumes at clearance prices, the money saved vs. buying them at one of the shops at the resort could take you on a whole ‘nother vacation.

I do want to spend some more time talking about the whole packing costumes thing – but for now, I just want to say thank you to a special friend who let me borrow her daughter’s Mary Poppins’ costume. When she first offered, I was skeptical because I had planned on taking quite a plethora of costumes with already – and really, Mary Poppins is nice – but she ain’t Cinderella. Plus, the costume was huge, with layers upon layers of white silk and a big red sash. But it fit in Miss A’s suitcase (remember, you saw a picture?) so I took it with.

Thanks to the handy dandy dining reservations my travel agent made – we had breakfast on our first full day of vacation at 1900 Park Fare in the Grand Floridian.

While having breakfast,  Tigger,  Pooh, Alice and the Mad Hatter visit you – and so does Mary Poppins. The dining hall was filled with girls dressed as  Belle, Aurora, Jasmine, and there were even quite a few Alices.

But only Miss A looked like this:

mini Mary

What you can’t see in this pic are her sandals…it was hella-hot during our trip (this is freakin’ Florida after all) and there was no way Miss A was going to suffer through wearing that hot costume all day – so we made Miss A’s Dada suffer instead by stuffing it into his backpack. Miss A had on a cute little sundress that we threw the costume right over while waiting for our reservation  in the air conditioned heaven of the hotel. And then I ended up making Miss A suffer anyway while I forced her to pose for pictures (hey, this was my vacation too).

rollin eyes at more pics

When Mary arrived at our table, she was so excited to see a mini-Mary!

2 marys 3

She spent a great deal of time with us, and Miss A glowed from all the attention.

2 Marys 5-7-09

I think it’s fun for the performers too (I mean “cast members”), it can be kind of depressing to feel like you’re always 2nd fiddle to a girl who cleans house for 7 short dudes.

Lil' G was fascinated by Mary's hat (we ended up not packing that).
Lil' G was fascinated by Mary's hat (we ended up not packing that).

The whole dining room watched and smiled along with us as Mary and Miss A chatted and posed.

2 marys best smaller

Despite my initial misgivings, taking that costume along was totally worth it. It kicked our first full day of Disney off to a truly magical start, and made for some wonderful memories.

Mary with the family smaller

So there’s the Drama Mama Disney advice for this week:  find costumes for some of the “lesser known” Disney characters that your children enjoy (Miss A does really like Mary Poppins alot, especially when she sings that “Super-Pickle-ishish” song) it is likely to score your little ones some great extra time and attention.

Thanks again to my wonderful friend who let us borrow the costume in the first place!

The English Teacher in Me is Ashamed

I don’t know what is happening to me…it it old age? An inundation of poor spelling and grammar via texts and message board posts?

I’m not sure what it is, but I know I don’t like it.

Several times now, I have caught myself misusing the forms of “there and their” Srsly? I spent hours teaching high school students a simple trick to know the difference, yet I have caught myself using the wrong one a few times recently…often in a blog post where I can’t go in and edit my comment – so the error is THERE for the whole world to see. Like my panties the time I tucked my skirt into my nylons.

Another one I recently caught myself screwing up was “then and than.” I’d hit my head against the desk in shame, except for the fact I’m worried I’d cause more damage to what appears to be an item already in a precarious position.

Next thing you know I’ll be using “loose” in place of “lose.”

At that point, I’ll know it’s over.

Somedays Just Start Out Crappy…Literally

This morning Lil’ G wakes up with a particularly nasty diaper. So I clean her up, change her, and get her dressed for the day. No biggie.

By the time I finish getting ready for the day, Lil’ G managed to produce another craptastic diaper…soaking through her clothes.

Argh! Really? Insert giant sigh here and move on with the day. Hopefully it turns out to contain less crap.

Inspiration Keeps Coming My Way

I mentioned that last week’s Monday Muse, Jennifer DesAutels sent me a few suggestions on other websites created by wonderfully artistic women. I have been checking them out here and there, and definitely found a few keepers!

This week I want to tell you about artist Bella Sinclair.

Artwork by Bella Sinclair
IF Parade by Bella Sinclair

She just moved back to the states after living in Tokyo for awhile (the above illustration was inspired from watching Japanese children walking to school in their uniforms).

Miss A and I spent an enjoyable afternoon perusing her gorgeous, whimsical artwork. Like this piece (one of Miss A’s favorites). There are many more adorable prints, but you should go visit her site and see them for yourself.

Amandine & Beatriz by Bella Sinclair
Amandine & Beatriz by Bella Sinclair

Reading Bella’s blog I felt an instant connection with her – based on the simple fact she is a “stay-at-home mom” raising two daughters. I guess it’s sort of an extended version of that instant connection pregnant women feel when encountering each other in a grocery store. Despite being perfect strangers – there is an instant familiarity.

So after poking around her site I actually read the most recent entry, and my heart just dropped. Tucked amongst all the delightful drawings, the notes and pictures about various Japanese landmarks,  the comments about preparing to move back to the states, Bella informs her readers that her loving husband passed away suddenly.

Maybe it was because of the aforementioned connection I had subconsciously created, but despite having never heard of this woman til this week, her news hit me really hard.  The phrase is overused, but it fits: my heart went out to her.

She hasn’t posted on her blog since that entry in late June, and I can’t begin to imagine all that she’s going through.

Stop by her site, find some joy in her work, and perhaps leave a comment hoping to offer a little joy to her.

My new love and I have had our first fight

It’s been smooth sailing and sweet sweet reading bliss since the moment my test drive with the Sony PRS-505 e-reader began nearly a month ago.

Until today.

Today, I am a sad Panda.

Like I have done many times in the past few weeks, I lace up my Nikes, strap Lil’ G into the jogging stroller, turn on the e-reader and head out for a great summer afternoon of sunshine, fresh air, exercise, and reading time. I am a multi-tasker, the need to be doing more than one thing at a time is in my bones. Even before the e-reader arrived I would take a book along for a walk – wrestling to hold it still on the handlebars of the stroller as I knocked off a few miles.  The e-reader has made what some might view as a bizarre habit even easier, and I’ll take such long walks now that the husband is worried I’m sneaking off to have an affair. Yeah, right – in my nasty yoga pants and a sweaty tank top…and don’t forget I bring the kid along with me. No, the only affair is with my e-reader, and is has been wonderful – until today.

Which brings me back to the point of my point –  my e-reader is no longer perfect. When I went to turn it on today, nothing happened. The power button is a sliding tab at the top of the device, and looking closer at it, it appeared to be jammed. It still slid, but not smoothly, and of course, there was the whole not turning on thing. Quelling my panic, I put the brakes on Lil G’s stroller and ran into the house to plug the e-reader into the computer – it was still working fine, and once plugged in, everything was normal. So I popped it back out, and went for a very nice long walk while reading Make Me Yours by Betina Krahn (which is turning out to be a great read, thanks to all the fellow test drivers who suggested her!)

I’m trying to figure out if it was something I did set the reader off, I like to walk while reading a chapter, then I toss the reader into the basket under the stroller and run for 5 minutes. Wash, rinse, repeat, until Lil’ G gets crabby or I start getting blisters. I don’t think I damaged it tossing it into the basket, it’s protected in there, and besides – it flipped out before I started my workout that day, not during or after.

Once I got back home I tried the power button again. Still nada.  I showed it to the husband, and he said…yep, that’s jammed. He offered to unscrew the back and start poking around…but I’m just not cool with violating something I don’t own. I have considered using the Uncle Fester method: hit something repeatedly until it starts working again…but  there’s that whole not owning it thing.

Doing some web-digging, I found a few others with the same issue, and the same band-aid solution. Which really isn’t so much a solution as it is a way to keep using the reader without use of a working power button.

I’m hoping the reader is just being a fickle wiener and when I test the button again in a few days it will play nice. Until then, I turned off the Sleep Mode and plan to charge it daily and leave it on.

So, like noticing your lover snorts when he laughs or chews really loudly (don’t worry H, you don’t do either of those) I have discovered that the e-reader has its flaws.

I just hope this doesn’t completely spoil our relationship…there’s still a lot of summer reading lovin’ to be had.