Monday, July 22, 2013

Busy Month

Hello everyone!

Sorry about the lack of posts! I just wanted to give a little update on my life.

It seems that half of my friends have birthdays in July, so I have been doing lots of birthday stuff.

I am also in a friend's wedding near the beginning of August, so there is a lot of wedding stuff going on! On this note, I got my bridesmaid dress which is pretty but doesn't fit (I know, they never fit). It's too big in the shoulder and the bust (story of my life), but too small in the hips and butt! I about panicked when I tried it on, but it was far too late to re-order and the women in the shop told me it would fit. All I can do now is loose some inches from my hips and butt! So I have been working out nearly everyday for that and my friends and I have started Insanity yet again. We need to be fit and sexy for NDK, anyway.

I have been working a little on my costumes, but not as much as I probably should be.

In important news, I am going back to school for my Masters. Sadly this means I have to move and leave Isaac and the rats at home for the year. I also don't have a place to live yet, which causes me some stress. I am excited to start the program, however. It is an intensive, year long program for a Professional Masters (which boils down to more credits per semester, finish in a year, and don't write a thesis). I have my classes all set up and I've ordered my textbooks, so I'm feeling pretty good about it.

I just took on a new student to tutor in reading. While I passed the test that says I can tutor reading, I find it difficult to teach because I learned at such a young age, I can't remember how I was taught. It has been an interesting experience so far, but I enjoy it over all.

And we had some of Isaac's family in town during July so we spent lots of time with them. Then my friend, Amie, came into town so we all spent a ton of time just hanging out. Which led to me not sleeping much hence no blogging.

Is that about it for the moment? I think so. I will try to get some more posts out with a little less delay!

And we will end with some pictures of my adorable rats, since I haven't blogged about them very often. They make me very happy!

I like it when they are in rat piles.

Me and "the boys."

Little Remus (aka "Bright Eyes.")

Silly Romulus!
Enjoy! Thanks for reading!

Wednesday, July 3, 2013

NDK 2013 Costumes Part Six

I have been slacking!!!

Get on the ball, Samara! Really now!

Ok, so here is what I have.

Lately I have been diligently working on my Jareth costume.

The vest and dickey are finished. I am nearly finished with the coat. Here are some progress pictures on that.

Here is the necessary pocket I sewed into the inside of the jacket!
Without sleeves.
With sleeves.
Coat almost finished. Just need to hem the bottom and add the lace on the sleeves. Then to glitter it up!
I also started working on the broach. I am having an interesting time with this, but this seems to be the best idea right now.
It isn't finished yet, don't panic. I'm sure it will look better when it's finished...
I will try to put enough silver beads on afterwards to cover the little holes. I wonder if I should have done that part first... Well, you live, you learn!

(By the way, this is what it's supposed to look like...
That's never going to happen. Shhh...)

I still need to order my wig. Should do that soon; I keep telling myself. Also, to wear contacts or to not wear contacts? I'd love to, but it's expensive... especially since they would need correction because I like to see.

That has been my main focus so far. I figure if I can finish one very ambitious costume, the rest will be easier.

I have made a bit of progress with Nausicaa. I am currently figuring out how to do the cartridges on her top.

I am thinking the mask probably won't happen. Mostly because I haven't figured out a great way to make it and I'm afraid that I will run out of time trying.

As for Rogue and Gambit? Nada. Zip. Zero. I'd better order my costume soon. Then I will feel as though I am being productive.

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

Proud to Love. Proud to be Loved.

I have been working on this post for a long time. This is a heavier post about a topic that is very important to me. While I tend to defend such arguments with sarcasm, I am going to try to do this in a non-sarcastic, direct matter.

With DOMA entering the Supreme Court last week, the LBGT issues have been on my mind more than normal. As most of you know, DOMA was overturned in the Supreme Court and the people on either side of the issue have been rising up on the internet to express their feelings about this.

I am a supporter of the LBGT community, which probably does not come as a shock to anyone who knows me or anyone who reads my blog. While I myself am not part of the community per se, I do have many friends and acquaintances who are. Because of this, the issue of marriage equality is something near and dear to my heart. It directly affects people that I know and care about.

Some of what people say in defense of DOMA makes very little sense to me. Many arguments are religious in nature. Here is my response. It is not your life. It is not your job to interfere, and it is certainly not your job to "save" these people. If you believe that homosexuality (etc.) is wrong, immoral, and buys you a one-way ticket to hell, fine. Believe that. But stay out of it. If you think they are going to hell, fine, that is their choice. Though many people, myself included, believe that if there is a hell (which I don't) they won't be going there anyway because being a good person is what is important. So I guess what I am saying is that it is a moot point and you should leave these people alone to make their choices and live their lives.

Furthermore, I was raised with a mix of Christianity and Judaism. I was always taught that being a good person was more important than what group(s) you are affiliated with, religious or otherwise. On that note, even if you don't agree with someone, you should still be tolerant. You don't have to see eye-to-eye to practice tolerance. Acceptance? Even better.

A little interlude. Here is a bit from George Takei that he posted on facebook in May 2013:

"Many on this page have commented that they are "sick" of people talking about gay issues, or simply "don't care" if someone is gay and would rather they would kept it to themselves. I find this disheartening.

There may come a day when we need not come out of the closet, and need not remind others of the terrible violence, inequity, and ostracism that LGBT people face daily simply because of who
we are and who we love. But that day is not here, and more importantly will never get here, unless people continue to step forward and offer themselves as examples, often at great personal cost. I am called "faggot," "degenerate," "queer" and "homo" by misguided people every day of my life, even on my own page, but this does not discourage me. It only reminds me of how far we have to go.

Once upon a time I was called a "Jap" and put into a prison for four years with my entire family, for no reason other than who we were and who we looked like. It is my life's mission to fight against the dark forces of fear and intolerance that could ever lead again to such an injustice.

Thank you for taking the time to listen. The next time you feel fatigue from hearing about LGBT issues, ask yourself this: Do we live yet in the kind of society where violence, hate and prejudice is not an issue? Until we do, be part of the solution, and stand always for justice and equality for all people." Thank you George Takei.

Not all of the people against the homosexual marriage movement are religious. Some are just plain nasty, telling people that they don't deserve to live or even, in extreme cases, that the objector is going to kill the homosexuals/homosexual supporters. This just makes me sick and is horribly wrong no matter what. These people should be ashamed of themselves. Talk like this just breaks my heart. No one should be treated this way and talked to in this manner ever.

Some of the more amusing arguments assume that gay marriage will be a slippery slope to polygamy and animal marriages. Which I just think is silly. These arguments can't even be taken seriously, in my personal opinion.

I wanted to share a little excerpt from the Huffington Post on this:

"I would like to tell you what will happen when marriage equality becomes recognized by the United States Federal Government. Gay men will marry gay men. Lesbians will marry lesbians. Straight men and women will marry each other. Some people who attend those weddings will laugh, cry, dance and drink too much. LGBT couples will get to file one joint tax return instead of filling out multiple returns in states where same sex marriage is recognized at the state level, but not at the federal level. LGBT married couples will receive the approximately 1100 federal rights that straight married couples receive.

I would also like to tell you what will not happen. Straight people will not turn gay. No one will be allowed to marry their cat, dog or other animal and no one will be allowed to have multiple spouses. The institution of marriage will not be diminished. If you think your marriage is harmed by same sex marriage, then your marriage is already on shaky ground."

Here is the full  article: William Dameron: Beware of the Gay Marriage Slippery Slope.  Thank you.

People are people. You can't make laws that discriminate against one group of people. If you have rights, why don't they? If two people love each other and want to make the commitment to stay together and live their lives together for better or for worse, who are we to deny them?

What if someone came to you and denied you such rights? Wouldn't you fight it? This is the person you love we are talking about! If someone put things in place to make it that much harder for you to be with them, wouldn't you be upset? What if all of the other people could marry and be with their chosen partner, but you couldn't? Why is that OK? It's not. That's all there is to it.

I also wanted to share this video by my friend, Wyatt. It is in this vein and was very important and touching for me: #ProudToLove (Re: Show your pride. Share your love.). Please watch it. This video finally got me really moving on this post. Thanks for the needed kick-in-the-pants.

So take care of people. Care about people. It is important.

And to the LBGT people and their supporters: be proud to love and be loved. Be encouraged by the small steps that we take together. And know that there is support out there. We are all trying our best to make these rights happen. Stay strong, keep loving.

And just for a laugh at the end of such a touchy issue, here is a short clip of Alonzo Bodden about gay marriage: Alonzo Bodden -- Gay Marriage. End on a lighter note.