Book Club! (and apology)

So, this month was a roller coaster, huh?

Though I didn’t properly announce it, this month was what I call Down Series month. All my posts were super down in the dumps.

Reason being, January is a harsh month to go through. Divorce rates get a little higher. Bankruptcy rates shake. Seasonal depression hits. There’s no sun. There’s no money. And so many people get sick. It’s known to be the most depressing month of the year.

Not to downplay the severity January can bring, I figured if I got a bunch of sad out all at once, the rest of the year can be brighter. It’s an experiment I’m willing to try.

And if January is getting you down, know that the next month is right around the corner. You can get through it, and seek help if you need it.

I’m sorry for bringing you down with me. Hopefully we can still be friends?

Moving on. Until the videos get up and going again, I’m gonna do monthly bookclub here (doki doki).

The first book I read was Ordeal by Innocence by Agatha Christie. If you didn’t know, Christie is a favorite. Right up there with my Poe man. The last couple of books I read of hers were meh, but this one reminded me why I love Agatha Christie’s writing! Cleverly put together with great relatable characters (and one over dramatic one). And, as usual, I couldn’t figure out the ending. 4.5/5 stars.

The second book I read was You are a Badass by Jen Sincero. I actually don’t usually subscribe to self-help books, but everyone kept talking about this one so I gave it a shot. And I can understand why everyone was talking about it: it’s great! If you’re sceptical, like me, about self-help books but desperately need, like me, to help yourself, this is the book to check out. 4.5/5 stars.

The third book I read was a library book store pickup from the 80s called Why Did She Have to Die? The title pulled me in, even if the cover was a vomit of 80s. What I really loved about this book is it accurately depicts the stages of grief. I read this in one sitting because I was invested in the protagonist’s grief. 4/5 stars.

The fourth book is Stargirl by Jerry Spinelli. I was told about this book from a friend of mine who loved it in her youth, so I read it. And loved it. If I could fault one thing, it’s the cliffhangers he always puts in. ‘It would never be the same after tomorrow.’ Too much. However, it has great messages and reminds me of how cruel high school was (and how much I wish I had a friend like Stargirl). Young or old, read this. 4/5 stars.

The fifth and final book I read was Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde by Robert Louis Stevenson. I’ve always been fascinated by TV and movie versions, but I never read the book until now. Quite different than I expected. I still debate whether it was a good or bad difference. I do prefer ‘The League of Extraordinary Gentlemen’ version. 3/5 stars.

And voila, a good start. I read five books when I only needed to read three. I’ve got a head start on my year-long challenge.

Let me know what you think of these books if you’ve read them, and leave me suggestions for books! I’m always looking for more.

Remember, starting Friday we’re back to uplifting stories and confident messages.

Hugs!

Alexandra

2018 is Over…

Bruh, has this been the longest year was it just me? Like, I feel like Dolores O’Riordan (lead singer of The Cranberries) died two or three years ago. Nope; this year. Anyway, it’s been a long year…

For some, it’s been a great year. For others, it’s been real shitty.

I definitely didn’t love this year. It’s been rough. However, I do believe, good year or otherwise, each offers something to learn. Yeah, it may have been super awful, but are you a stronger person because of it? Most likely. And that’s what’s important.

While on Pinterest, as I am everyday now, damn, I found a page putting the year into review. So I decided to fill it out:

2018-Year-in-Review-Printable-2

Voila.

I’m pretty sure I missed some significant moments, but this is what stood out.

Did I have a mental breakdown earlier this year? Absolutely. Did I lose my dog I’ve had since I was 13? Yep. Was I unwelcomely invited to reminisce about the worst year of my life? Oh yeah. Was there a financial scare? Ooh boy, was there.

Man, all that was just awful.

But…

did I also see Fall Out Boy live, completing a bucket list goal for me? Yep! Did I go to the Markiplier’s You’re Welcome Tour? Yes, sir! Did I go to California, visiting friends and family, and being introduced to the coolest bookstore ever? Hell, yeah! Did one of my plays get read by actors? Best moment ever, honestly!

While there were a lot of shortcomings about this year, there were also some great moments, too. We have to take the bad with the good.

For 2019, let’s be more honest, and more expressive!

Happy New Year, my beautiful people.

May 2019 be a shining star of a year for you. That is my hope for you.

Hugs

Alexandra

After Christmas…

Hey, guys!

I hope everyone had a great Christmas!

But now Christmas is over. (wah wah)

Today is the day I do stuff. I clean up, I put everything away, I run errands, etc. I crafted three gifts, one taking about 75+ hours, and my desk is a MESS. It’s awful. However, it was worth it? (Honestly, I’m still not sure about that one)

Take time after a holiday or major event to care for yourself. Whether that’s organizing, like I’ll be doing, or fully resting. Don’t feel guilty about taking the day. Or more. Sometimes it takes more than one day; I understand that.

I’ll be back with a proper post on Friday!

Hugs

Alexandra

100 Blog Posts!

Less than a year ago, I started this website. Today is my 100th blog post.

That’s roughly two posts a week.

What a great place this has been! Finally, a place to put written work, art, thoughts, stories, crafts, anything I want.

Yeah, sometimes I go too far. Sometimes I don’t make sense. Sometimes I’m wrong. Sometimes I complain too much.

I don’t mind being told such.

Being proven wrong is not the end of the world. Writing nonsense can bring clarity. And complaining can help release pent-up emotions.

But, to do this properly, thank you to all who found my website and interact with me. I appreciate you guys so much. Thank you for making me feel unlonely (is that a word?). Thank you for the kind words and encouragement. It truly does mean a lot.

Here’s to another hundred posts. May adventures and crazy moments keep me from not having ideas.

Hugs

Alexandra

Merry Christmas!

I was originally going to post this on Christmas Eve, but something else is happening on the 24th. 😉

So, it’s Christmas.

Peace on Earth, good will toward men, right?

I love this time of year. It’s winter, so mega plus. It’s a time to give, it’s a time to help, it’s a time to be really aware of all you have. I love the lights, I love the carols, I love the treats, I love the whole atmosphere.

It’s also a tough time of year.

Some of my friends are not fans of this time of year. One blames bad Christmases on divorce. One hates the sudden expectation to give, when you should give all year long. One hates the over-commercialism. One hates the phone cheer and fake happiness is around the time. One hates the selfish people Christmas can bring.

Honestly, they’re all valid.

There’s a lot of annoying things about the Christmas season.

But I don’t care.

Christmas is about what the individual makes it out to be. I enjoy Christmas because of the good I view it to be.

Like my friends don’t enjoy Christmas because of the bad they view it to be.

It’s up to the individual.

I’m not saying they’re all totally wrong. I’m saying it’s not my preferred.

So, when all is said and done, I wish you all a very merry Christmas. It is my earnest hope that you all find joy in this season somewhere.

Merry Christmas.

#becauseofyou

I’ve been seeing this hashtag several places now, and I think it’s very interesting. People calling out their bullies or people in their lives that made them feel less than they are.

I wanted to join in, so here it is (every hashtag is a different person/people):

#becauseofyou I felt stupid. I felt ugly. You made fun of me in public, giving our impressionable classmates permission to do the same. All because I said I liked you.

#becauseofyou I’m paranoid. I have a fear of sudden noises, of handshakes, and of being kissed.

#becauseofyou I felt worthless. I felt unwanted. You told me that there was no point to my being there. I have no skill, no talent. Even when I worked hard to be better, it wasn’t good enough for you. I didn’t exist in your eyes.

#becauseofyou I believed I was a bad person. You didn’t want me in the same building as you, or our classmates. I confided in you, and you took it like I was betraying everything I stood for. It wasn’t even you I had a crush on; it was a different girl in the class.

#becauseofyou I felt unloved. I felt like a waste of time and space. Playing with my emotions until you got what you wanted out of me, and then act like we weren’t even friends.

#becauseofyou I believed I had no future. I felt like a useless and lazy member of society. I did my best with what was available to me, and you blamed my laziness for not being ahead.

#becauseofyou I felt crazy. I felt like I deserved every bad thing should happen to me, and that no one should be an acquaintance, let alone a friend. You told me that my mental disorder deserved to be punished, though I thought I was doing a good thing by seeking help.

#becauseofyou I felt sad, lonely, useless, worthless, hideous, stupid, insane, terrible, and more.

But…

#becauseofyou I feel like I have a true friend. You were there for me and trusted me to be there for you. Though you don’t understand everything about me, you accept me.

#becauseofyou I feel intelligent. I feel like I actually have good thoughts in my brain. You praise my ideas, and aren’t afraid to tell me when I can fix something. You are constantly reminding me of what I have accomplished academically.

#becauseofyou I feel loved. We may not be together, but how terrific you made me feel about myself.

#becauseofyou I feel worthwhile. You help me with my mental disorders and encourage me to be the best I can be. Even if they never leave me, I can be a healthy individual.

#becauseofyou I feel accepted. You took me in, you were kind, and you never made me feel like an outsider even if I very much was one.

#becauseofyou I believe I am a good person. Orientation is a part of me, not who I am entirely. You helped me during those confusing months, and encouraged me to be true to myself. I know who I am, and the kindness I have for others.

#becauseofyou I feel beautiful. My height and size was never a problem to you or your work. You complimented my style and who I was.

#becauseofyou I feel accomplished, smart, able, lovely, worthwhile, lovable, nice, and more.

While I believe this hashtag is good for releasing those negative feelings in a, mostly, anonymous manner, it is also good to remember those who made you feel like the amazing person you are.

And if you don’t hear it from anyone else, allow me to tell you:

You are a lovely, wondrous, worthwhile person.

Hugs

Alexandra

My Break From Video-Making

If any of you follow my YouTube channel, you know what this is about.

If you do not, I’ll link the video here, so watch that first (if you want to).

First of all, if I’m going to be completely honest, which I always try to be, I was thinking about taking a break to begin with.

It’s hard for me, personally, to admit that, considering I claim such a passion for making videos. I do. I say it time and time again how much I love making videos. Well, lately, I’ve found that passion a bit…dwindled.

I expect a lot out of myself, and I want to be the best person I can be. Recently, my best self has been trying too much: a consistent twice-a-week YouTube schedule, a consistent thrice-a-week website schedule, working on a production, my actual job, reading 50+ books in a year, writing and editing my original work, art, crafts, learning ASL, trying to learn coding, on top of attempting to maintain my health, mentally and physically. Full disclosure, it’s not working. All of that plus taking care of the home and dealing with sudden stresses and the holidays.

It was too much.

I knew I had to downsize hobby-wise. The first thing I cut was art. Really, had no qualms about it. I can wait on coding, so that’s out for now. The book thing is almost done; can’t quit now. I rely on crafts, especially around Christmas for gift-giving, so no. That leaves making videos.

A week, on average, I can spend 15-35 hours on making videos. That’s quite a lot of time for someone not making a profit on it. I make ‘profit’ on everything else I do. My blog is a proper brain dump for all my work. Writing and editing for my future. Crafts as gifts, the profit of others. ASL because I’ve been yearning to learn a second language; it makes you more marketable and cultured. Videos, while fun to do, don’t give me much to gain. It may do me well in the future, but right now it’s not doing much.

But I couldn’t just let go of making videos. I truly love it.

Then, the universe gave me a scapegoat: my computer.

If you were not aware, everything I do technologically was done by a 3-year-old laptop bought for 300$ at Fred Meyer (a grocery store). When I first got it, I was so certain it was only going to last a year, a year and a half max. I mean, the built-in keyboard lasted 5 months before failing. It certainly proved me wrong by lasting 3 years and 2 months (ish).

But if finally glitched its last glitch. Programs, if they opened at all, were slow and/or froze. The internet super glitched and wouldn’t open websites at all. I finally called it. It’s not worth the headache of keeping it going.

So, I currently do not have a computer. I’m grateful for the chance to blame this break on something else.

Until I get a new computer, I still plan on writing on my blog, so this will stay updated, and you can check out past videos.

Though not having a computer will be a big pain in the ass, it’ll give me something less to worry about during stressful time.

Hugs

Alexandra

P.S. I’m typing this at the library, more likely the place I will do all of my writing.

A Message from Assistant Edgar

IMG_1570It is 5 November, 2018.

Happy Bonfire Night to Miss TG’s U.K. friends.

Miss TG is having a struggle with her scheduling, which gives me more work.

So, even though I have a lot of paperwork to do, I was also scheduled to give another message.

Sometimes your work, your life, or your mind will give you extra struggles.

All we can do in these moments is work through it to the best of our ability. It may/will take time. But success is more than possible; it is achievable.

And do not be afraid to ask for help. In my line of business, I usually work alone. However, in these busy days, I have asked Senior Marketer and Certified Black Cat Mr. Toothless to help me. It is not a sign of weakness or failure to ask for help. I’m perfectly capable in my abilities; I just also knew I could not do it on my own.

It is okay to worry and to stress.

But do not let it overpower and overcome you.

Sincerely,

Assistant Edgar

A Message from Certified Black Cat Toothless

Hi!img_6251

I’m Toothless, and I’m a black cat.

I spend my day sleeping, eating, sleeping, snuggling with my human, eating, and being a papa figure to the other cats, since I am the oldest.

I love soft food, pets, and sticking my leg out when I lay down.

Halloween is coming up.

Black cats are seen as superstitious creatures.

We are no more or less dangerous than any other cat.

I less so, since I’m so domesticated I refuse to leave the house. And I’m chubby so I don’t run much.

Black cats are given a bad reputation, and around this time of year is when we are bullied, hurt, even killed the most.

In reality, we can be sweet. We can be snugglers. We can give hugs and kisses.

Please don’t hurt us. And don’t let others hurt us either.

#blackcatsmatter

-Toothless