avrelia: (new year)
let it be happy for all of you

New Year

Dec. 31st, 2013 11:51 am
avrelia: (Default)
0_cd655_d489dad7_orig

photo from here

Happy Year to all my friends and passers-by! :)

I was bad about posting this year, and I don't see it improving the next one, but I miss good old times on LJ, when most people on friends-list were posing something every week... I know I should start with myself, especially I have lots of news and thoughts and things to write about.

happy New Year! let it be a good one.
avrelia: (new year)
The last year.

Well, as we are now well into January, I might as well to think about last year. It didn't feel busy, but it fact many things happened, most of them not something I did, but something that happened with my help or without.

- we got green cards. I still feel very weird about our relocation to USA from Canada, but of course live with green card is much more convenient. Now I can look for work, except I have no idea what kind of work I want now – and how to get I don't know what.

- we lived through the disaster of the year – hurricane Sandy. I think I didn't write much in English about us, but it was more of a major inconvenience for us, comparing to other people, even in our town that didn't get a lot of damage (fallen trees and lack of power). We were without power for four full days, which is unpleasant in November New Jersey, but we had a full tank of gas that served us through the week, and an opportunity to drive and have hot breakfast in cafes, and lots of friends who invited us to stay. Now, hearing all the stories about people for whom the disaster isn't over yet, it is hard to talk about it. But when we in, it was... scary.

- we were on vacation! It's been years since we were on an actual vacation. In fact, it seems in was the last one was in 2008, when we went to New York. So quaint, hee. Anyway, this year we went to see California, specifically San Francisco and Silicon Valley, thinking, among other things, to see whether we would like to live there, if anything happen (like a job). We liked it, but didn't fell in love with it to move there immediately. Not unless lots and lots of money are involved. But as visitors – we enjoyed it very much, especially since the weather was incredibly, summery good.

- Daniel's started the kindergarten, and he loves it. I am so happy to have a sociable kid who finds lots of friends everywhere! He does well at studies, too – math and reading especially. He is slowly starting reading in both English and Russian, though I see that he finds English easier- there are more book at his exact level of reading skills, whereas in Russian he is reading above his level, and it is hard.

- I've been learning things the whole year, too: I took the full advantage of coursera.org online courses and had a lot of fun listening to lectures, reading and writing essays and taking quizzes. I only not sure how to apply that to my life though – none of the courses I successfully finished were of the applied usefulness variety. I mean, who would pay me for my advanced knowledge of Greek Mythology? I did started to write again. Not sure what exactly it was that made it impossible to finish any kind of story in the previous two years. It shouldn't be that hard.

- I startedmaking friends in my little town, and I started to grow attached to it – just in time to moving out, as we most likely won't be able to buy here (too expensive).

- My mom and my sister with her son visited in 2012. Unfortunately, I couldn't visit them (waiting for the green card, it turns out, locks you up – you can leave, but you'll have problems returning). Have crazy hopes for this year.

- Some things were not accomplished due to heath issues. I hope for the better luck this year.

- My health reminded me that I am not a young girl anymore, even though the number that suppose to mean my age looks suspiciously alien to me. I mean, 36? 36 is the age for a respectable matron, not for a person skipping around in public and using Skype to make silly faces at her sister.

- I read a lot, but not as much as I used to. Suddenly, an hour with a good book is a luxury that is not always possible to justify, even when I waste my time on other silly things. I do read when I can, and I enjoyed going back and reading old classics. Nothing brings the self-esteem up as much as reading Oresteiaand writing essays about it.

- During the last week of the year, we introduced D. to Harry Potter (first two movies). He is sufficiently enchanted and talks about Harry Potter a lot. He asked for books, too, but I refused to read them to him – they are waiting for him to learn to read by himself. It is incredible to see that he got a very different story than the one that is in the books, that somehow still consistent with what he saw on screen and what we explained.
avrelia: (new year)
384437-small

health and happiness for all
avrelia: (Carmenta)
Well, it's been a year of very little tv, even less than before, as the еime to watch anything dwindles. And my fandom participation dwindles even more, as I don't have the same passion I used to have for BtVS for any other shows, and I can't even talk about BtVS anymore.

What I watched

Fringe. It's been a sad year for me and Fringe. Our romance was intense, but too short-lived. I was absolutely enamored by it after I dashed through the first two seasons, in spring of 2011, then season 3 was fine, but season 4 made me unhappy on several levels, mostly by making Olivia-Peter relationship the core of the universe, and sacrifice everything to get to it, mostly characterization of Olivia.

And then I started watching season 5, and stopped. I want to see the end, but not interested in actually watching the whole season.

After giving up on Fringe, P. and I started watching Heroes – we have Amazon Prime, so it is free, and why not? I watched an episode or two when it ran, and was generally familiar with the story by fandom osmosis. The reaction was predictable – the season 1 is wonderful, the season 2 is okay, and now we are in the middle of season 3 for the last month. Haven't given up on it, yet, but whatever. I don't understand the characters anymore, they seem to be puppets of showrunners who just perform whatever play is staged. Like Comedia del Arte. Only frustrating, because I want characters to have some meaningful storylines even in sitcoms.

Speaking of sitcoms – I don't seem to have time to watch all my friends are talking about, so I occasionally catch one or another episodes of “The Big Bang Theory” (which I watch for the ladies), and “Raising Hope” (which I love for the grandparents of Hope, who are one of the best TV couples).

Lost Girl – very enjoyable, but now I hardly remember what happened when and with whom. Still, I hope to watch the third season.

And last, but not least – Once Upon a Time. That was my “most fun to watch” series in 2012. I am well aware of its multiple flaws, in plot and characters, and I am not anywhere near fannish, not even enough to write meta and look for icons, but... it brought me joy, joy I didn't expect. Well, I didn't expect that having a show full of interesting, active, female characters would feel so good, that it fulfilled a need I knew I had on intellectual level, but I didn't know I needed it that much until I got it. So I forgive silliness, and plotting randomness, and shallowness as long as I can have Snow White and Red Riding hood being best friends – and not in shopping and talking about boys sense, but fighting for each other lives, or have Snow White and Emma with Aurora and Mulan on a road trip, or Snow White trying to build relationship with her adult daughter. The show generally present a wide variety of mother-daughter relationships (parent-child relationships, in general, are the emotional core of the series). I love Belle's self-awareness, Red's bravery, Granny's quiet might, Regina's fight with herself, Snow White's honesty and fierceness, Emma's cynicism. The show does some really good “princesses”.

Watched the first episode of “ The Game of Thrones”. Liked, with reservations. Waiting for the rest to arrive from the library.

Plans for the 2013:
1) finally watch Downton Abbey
2) find out how Fringe ends
3) Lost Girl, OUAT
4) if there is time, go back and watch Doctor Who.

TV 2010

Feb. 3rd, 2011 10:09 pm
avrelia: (Tea)
I am still thinking about my year 2010 results. Now I am getting around to post about my TV viewing. It was... weird, I'd say. But in 2008-2009 it was non-existent, so there. The main difficulty was that P hardly wants to watch anything but Jon Stuart and occasionally Colbert, and I don't want to watch my TV with D – he gets enough of cartoons as it is.
So I watched in odd breaks. Obviously, I watched quite a lot when I was alone last year – when P was in NY, and I was still in Canada. I watched – (after having finally bought) – “Wonderfalls”, I watched “The Tenth Kingdom”, which I wrote about immediately after, I re-watched some old Russian favourites, and I watched “Dollhouse”. Which I almost forgot about until writing this post. And you know what? It is my review. It was controversial, and awkward, and uncomfortable. It had brilliant moments, it had great acting. But at the end it was utterly forgettable. What worse one can say about it?
In NY I discovered several things. 1) Not everything is available on HULU; 2) One can find almost everything to watch online these day somewhere else.

I watched... not much, still.
“The Big Bang Theory” - amusing, often funny, occasionally makes me cringe.
“Raising Hope” - hilarious, especially for the one with some amount of child-rearing experience. Kind of sweet, but asks to suspend one's disbelief really high.
“Lost Girl” - wonderful. Looking forward for the second season. I wish they were less coy about Canadian locations – I want to see less generic and more familiar sights. I also wish Kenzi spoke Russian more often. It's fun ;) I am not fannish about it though – I cannot get hot and bothered about any TV show anymore. I hope no one can take my fandom membership away because of it...

moving to 2011
I am in the process of watching Doctor Who, the last season. It's awfully confusing, having picked up all knowledge about show from osmosis and a half -dozen of assorted episodes from previous seasons. But fascinating. Very fascinating.
Shows I want to watch, but never get around to: “Fringe” and “Community”. Maybe some day.
avrelia: (reading is hot)
I found a strange curse upon me – the curse of owning books. I have now small, yet reasonably cool library at home. Lovingly collected. Moved around across half of the world and several times through America. And a large part of it is yet unread. Not only it is unread, I have no idea when I get around to reading it.
There is always new books that I rush to read – free books from public libraries that I have to return in several weeks, so they always end up my priority reading. And when I finish them, another library book is waiting to be read immediately. I buy books occasionally – when I have some money to spend on them, I buy – to read at my leisure, to boost sales for the author, to own something I love. And that fabled leisure time never comes. The books remain unread. Or unfinished.
A year ago I cruelly culled my books, giving away to the local library and friends about one third of what I had. Now I shall have to do some culling again. I have no idea how to go about it. I need to read faster I guess.

There are too many delicious books to read and reread...

io9.com published their best sff list for the year 2010. I read one book from the list (The Windup Girl), and there are two that are in my giant to-read pile: NK Jemisin, The Broken Kingdoms and Cherie Priest, Dreadnought. Charles Yu, How To Live Safely In A Science Fictional Universe looks very interesting, I may check it out.
Damn. Where is the time to read all the books I want?!
avrelia: (Default)
it was a strange year. I have neither “yay” or “nay” to sum it up, but I am generally glad it is over – there is always hope that the new year would be better.

From the objective point of view, this year had positive changes for us – P got a new gob, in New York and we all moved after him, and really, how bad can be a year when we lived in New York? Our lives filled with interesting things and troubles. P's new job is quite good and he met a lot of his high school classmates from Kiev here in New York (mind you, when I say classmates, it's not five out of a hundred, it's eight out of thirty kids that graduated one Ukrainian school twenty years ago. It's incredible.)
On subjective level this year was very complicated. The excitement of the new life besides, we did suffered the total failure of our old Canadian life. We didn't really want to leave Canada, we had a lot of plans and dreams and hopes, but they all didn't work out – at the time. We left the comfort of familiarity and old connections in favour of something new and probably good, but very different. We also again found ourselves in a rather shaky position status-wise. We came to Canada the same way – P on work permit, I as visitor. But it was ten years ago and it felt more like an adventure that we could stop any time and go back. Now – go back where? I feel the shakiness of my position very strongly now. Before that I could see myself just buying one way ticket to Moscow. Now... with D, I seem to have to stay put, no matter what. And I cannot work.
I seem to find myself firmly in stay-at home-land. Which is not a position I ever wanted or can wholeheartedly enjoy. I love spending my time with D. I love not having to get out of house at 7 am. I love not having to do stuff I hate doing and see people I'd rather not see. But... I do miss seeing people and doing stuff – there were always aspect I loved in my job, I enjoyed the puzzle-solving part of legal work, I enjoyed a job well done and a case justly won. I enjoyed my salary most of all, to be honest. And that's what I miss most of all – my own earnings.
Now, I can't work and when, eventually I will be able to – I don't really know now what job to look for at this point. This year I continued to work on my own writing, and it went horribly. The re-writing part went too slow and not good enough. I knew what I should change, but not how. A year of work – and I don't have much to show. There is another problem that got really pronounced – I am very slow. Not, hopefully, a synonym of stupid, but slow in a mechanical sense: I am typing slowly (which is another reason why my job search sucks), and I am thinking slowly. This post, for example, I am writing for the second day. Well, not the whole day, obviously. I am afraid I even read slower than I used to. At least if you look and the books I read in the last year.
Socially, this year wasn't great for me. I left my friends and connections again, and started over in a new place, which is hard, especially when you do it again and again. I met some new people I liked, but the worst thing was that I felt too tired to seriously work on my social connections – away and close. I was bad at keeping in touch with old friends, I was bad at making new friends. I was bad at what I thought I got pretty good in the past few years. I just felt so tired, and knowing that I am going to change everything again in a year didn't help. I did try to venture in the new online communities, like goodreads, but either I didn't try hard enough, or I just got too silly in the past years, it didn't work out so far.
I wasted a lot of time and energy on things that I didn't need at the end, or on nothing at all.
After finishing the second draft of my novel, and realizing it sucks, I kind of didn't feel like writing anything – even though I had ideas. I am still working on it, and several short stories, but... whatever.
I read books and watched movies, and played World of Warcraft occasionally. I didn't do a lot of things I wanted to do.
My feeling of self-worth, confidence and identity crashed down. I also now know several people who got cancer. Young people. My generation people. Mortality got so much more real this year, and the fears for everyone dear to me.
So the balance of the year 2010? I don't know. I am just glad it's over. There are always hopes for the year 2011.
avrelia: (Default)
from my whole friends' list:

Copy and Paste if you have enjoyed the blessing of meeting people online that you never would have met any other way.

This is my end of the year shout out to the many friends I have never been in the same room with but who have inspired, amused, comforted, encouraged, and touched me in so many ways.


I feel much happier knowing you, my dear people. I wish that 2011 won't suck for you. I wish big and small joys throughout the year.
avrelia: (Default)
and what says Merry Christmas better than a mouse?



there is definitely something going on that I am not aware of. Anyways, I wish everyone jouus holiday and lots of good time!

and happy birthday to [livejournal.com profile] swsa!
avrelia: (Default)
I have just changed my default icon - first time in years! I love my personal ship, but I started to use rowan berries more and more. Does it have to mean anything?

so, year 2008.

- For the most part of it I was unapologetically interested in babies only. I would enjoy this baby-haze more were I not also madly worried about finding daycare and going back to work.
- I lost my last remaining grandmother, though I was hoping she would around for years more. I am happy though she lived to see - on photos only - her greatgrandson. One of the best arguments for having children earlier in life - they will get to see more relatives and you have more chances to see your descendants. Of course, if it is the sort of thing you care to see.
- I visited Moscow, leaving my baby with my husband alone. Not feeling guilty at the least. I had a very good time, though I would be even more happy to have them with me. I saw my parents and sister and friends and places I needed to see.
- We moved from Toronto to Mississauga, which I am still trying to get used to, and well, comprehend.
- I went back to work and then quit. Long story.
- I started to write short stories in hope someone will like them enough.
- I followed the politics of three countries and voted the first time in years, without being very excited about it.
- I am working on my productivity and I try to kill my procrastinator's habits. Strangely, writing in LJ now works for productivity, not against it.
- stopping worrying about work let me enjoy life a bit. Nice! (still, I worry about money and family and world crisis and future and stuff).
-life isn't bad overall
- it's 10 years since I met my husband.

wishes for the year 2009:
1) baby speaking two languages and being happy and healthy
2) my sis stuff (personal)
3) writing and finishing good stories
4) happiness for everyone.
5) other


Happy New Year, friends!


Остается пять минут
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avrelia: (Look)
from [livejournal.com profile] sweet_ali and [livejournal.com profile] soundingsea!! Thank you so much! the bell is going to hang on our tree. :)

I wish the happiest birthday to [livejournal.com profile] swsa! I hope you are having a wonderful day and that it will be followed by very happy holidays and a really good new year!

and that is out tree (without a bell yet) I put everything I had on it, and now I am thinking whether to make something more or leave it like this, all Ikea-blue.pictures )
avrelia: (Rowan)
wishlist

1) time
2) private teleporting device
3) lots and lots of will power
4) happiness for everyone who needs it
5) more common sense
6) friends - seeing or talking to them more often (yes, I mean YOU)
7) Going to Writercon
8) lots of international travel
9) new default icon
10) new layout ( I have to find something I like or at least or decide what I like)
11) all things in their places
12) Bones 3 season (I know many of you don't like, but I am yet to see any of it)
13) other cool TV and time to watch it
14) write more
15) finish stories I write
16) write in English without grammar mistakes
17) Dollhouse to have a good run
18) saner politics
19) health to my family and everyone else


If I think of something else, I'll edit it. I want more stuff, but mostly it is not for a public entry...
avrelia: (Twelve)
So, we've met the New year and I like it so far. I woke up today in the morning unbelievably bright and bouncy - a fry cry from my yesterday's "Why do all those people keep telling me to wake up?"

Yesterday was quite good and special though - we spent most of the day at our friends' friends house at the baptism of our friends' son. Party was mostly Romanian, and the food, and the baptism itself - Romanian Orthodox priest had come with all stuff including a basin, and the baptism took place at home, which was good, since already long Orthodox ceremony was prolonged by repeating parts of service in English (mostly in went in Romanian). Overall there was a lot of fuss, excitement and happy warm feelings. The baby was confused, but took it all very well, and liked the bath. :)

after all that we celebrated New Year coming to Romania (together with EU) and left for home, where I happily fell asleep. Woke up before midnight and went to friends' place to sit and celebrate the New Year chatting about unimportant stuff...

Here are some pictures I uploaded from our road trip: Niagara Falls, view from USA side:
Niagara Falls Pictures

We saw the falls from Canadian side several times by now and loved the USA side much more - whether because of the novelty or because it has a large park to walk around and many things to see.

Happy New Year! )
avrelia: (3 orisku Squee)
Seriously. Just sitting here and pondering whether I should check my work email. I know it will make me unhappy and worried, so I hold on, but the thought that I should check it and maybe call the office keeps nagging me. I want the working stuff to flow smoothly without me, and I know pretty well that I can stay worried about it for the whole two weeks of vacation. and I just want to rest. the last weeks were downright crazy, and I don't think I functioned as a sane person over that time. Oh well. I am lazy enough to talk myself into not doing anything, but I still will worry...

on to the less worrisome: husband is on vacation as well, and we are planning some holiday travel south of the border. For several days hotels are booked, but we are giving ourselves licence to do what we please and see what the fancy strikes us, with the idea to return sometime before New Year.

I am finally sending my holiday cards - I had to energy to write them during the last weeks and spent this weekend frantically trying to write something different to everyone. Pity I didn't have any cards from Russia left, so they wouldn't be as weird as usual.

I've got a card from [livejournal.com profile] the_royal_anna on Friday! yay!

and here is my holiday stocking. It's a very sad, almost empty stocking...
avrelia: (Happy New Year!)
First od all, I wish everybody very happy New Year! I hope that the coming year will be amazing.

I am in a very busy and happy mood - finishing all the "this-year things" and preparing for the New Year: cooking, cleaning, watching movies, writing letters. thinking waht to wear and what to do, and what to wish...

It is lovely. ;)

Except: Who put so many bones into herrings? And Why?

Instead of a present I am putting here a picture of my New Year tree (one of five):
New Year Tree )

which reminds me: I've got a card from [livejournal.com profile] lillianmorgan! Thank you!

New Year! Happy! Yay!

Happy 2005!

Jan. 1st, 2005 02:34 pm
avrelia: (Default)
So, we have safely arrived into the New Year. It went rather well – I would say unexpectedly well, since I didn’t expect anything in particular.

We went to celebrate the New Year with a group of Russian-speaking MBA students&families – people that we don’t know enough to call friends, but interesting and pleasant guys.

Still – meeting New Year is always a risk. But this time it went very nice: the table was abundant with food and drink (our hosts having just returned from Cuba, there was a lot of rum), the conversations never died out leaping on strange and diverse topics such as cemeteries in Cuba and New Orleans, the might of China, and tanks T-34. the apogee of the night was, naturally, the midnight moment – and as many Russians note, in North America it lacks a certain something – the sound of chimes in the clock on the Spasskaya Tower in Moscow Kremlin. Now, of course, the New Year is coming with or without the bells, but it is a very nice bells, and, more importantly, we are so used to it that it gives the whole thing a new and poignant significance.

So, our hosts found and downloaded the chimes sound – and after it stroke twelve, we’ve heard the dearly familiar bells. In the instant everything felt right. After the bells we’ve had a surprise – an old USSR anthem played. We all remember it played at twelve – up to thirteen years ago, and everyone can sing the words we’ve learned at school (the music is again Russian anthem, but the words are different.) However, the words here were different – it was a really old variant, from the thirties, with Stalin mentions. The combination of it all produced a curious effect of ironic and slightly embarrassed joy. None of us misses the Soviet Union particularly, but listening to the old anthem has brought a kind of nostalgia to us. So we laughed and laughed some more. As a result we’ve met New Year with laughter, which I am very happy about.

Then there were dances with incredibly mish-mashed music, tea, and more talking. It was all good.

And now for something completely different:

A Korean song with cartoon for your listening pleasure. I have no idea what it is about, but it is fun:

http://kr.fun.kids.yahoo.com/comicsong/cs71/
avrelia: (Default)
New Year, I mean. ;)

I spent today pondering whether I’d love to start this year over – with the knowledge of what would happen – in the world and my life so I could make it all better. But (a) of course, I wouldn’t be able to do anything different, save for several personal choices. Who would listen to me, seriously? And (b) I don’t think I have it in me to live this year again – knowing everything that happened.

Overall I am glad that year 2004 is over. It was not a very happy year – it was not without many good things either, but, in general, I will remember it as the year when my world has changed forever.

I strolled lazily through my friends’ list and wished people Happy New year. I think some of you got it several times, and some none. You may pass the spare wish around.

Happy Hew Year to everyone!


I wish it will be better than the previous one. Because if it is not, we just might not survive it.

I am happy, really. Just contemplative.
avrelia: (Default)
I would love to say that holidays are over, only they are not. I feel tired. And here I have Christmas tomorrow (when everybody around here threw away their trees and ate all turkeys two weeks ago); then my husband's birthday, then Old New Year...
I am so out of sync with the holiday season in Canada – sometimes it seems good, sometimes not so much... I don't enjoy holidays as much as before – may be I am just getting older? (Yeah, 27 years old pepperpot)
My not so good feelings:
1)that "out of sync" feeling
2)different ways to celebrate. Attempts to make everything like it is in Russia feel silly. Here is Canada, not Russia. People are different, traditions are different, mayonnaise is different. You try to make the same salad as always, it tastes different. No, salads do not bother me at all. But I miss New Year as it was before.
3)Explanations why I celebrate Christmas two weeks later than normal people. Sometimes It is fun, sometimes not. Depends.
4)There was something 4). Oh, well... May be, I'll remember later.

Good:
1)I can buy presents when shopping craziness is over.
2)I can celebrate Christmas because I feel like celebrating, not because it is a cultural "must".
3)I have two New Years (Chinese is not included)
4)No matter, where and how celebrated, New Year Eve still holds its magic for me. Wonderful things happen December 31 and January 1. hey, I met my husband on December 31!

So, here is my punch line: Merry Christmas, according to the Julian Calendar!
avrelia: (Default)
Happy New Year to Everyone! Let all your wishes come true in the new year!

And I am back to my to corner checking on cooling champaigne.

Tra-la-lala-la...

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