Wednesday, December 31, 2014

Looking Back Over 2014...

It's hard to believe that 2014 is almost behind us. As I write this, my clock registers only 9 hours more before the calendar changes to 2015. Sufferin' cats! Who knew it could fly by so fast?

So what did 2014 look like for me? Well, as I did last year, I'd like to take the opportunity to do a quick review and let you all share the bits of adventures with me. I don't have the time to go in depth for this, but I'll just post a few highlights. 

~ I finished the first draft of Secret of the Hazel Tree at around 198,000 words

~ Hosted the Dear Love party for Valentine's Day (thank you to all the girls who helped out with that!)

~ Went to college (and survived the first semester!)

~ Worked the front desk at my dad's tech center

~ Heard selections from the Messiah live and loved it so much that I went twice :)

~ Met my third cousin, Friday

~ Went ice skating for the very first time in my life (I only fell down 5 times)

~ Became a Oncer with three other awesome people who all know exactly who they are; we all agree Maine is a very cool place

~ Watched Fiddler on the Roof for the very first time -- where has that musical been all my life??

~ Began way too many plot bunnies (I counted at least 10 that came out of 2014)

~ Hit 90 followers on Lianne Taimenlore (love you guys!!)

~ Wrote a Beauty and the Beast story for the Five Enchanted Roses contest (which I will unfortunately not be entering as the contest closed before I could get the entry in... oh, well)

~ Learned I had synesthesia 

~ FINALLY saw HTTYD2... and of course, it was months after it came out and everyone I knew and their sister had already seen it *growl*

Hope you all have a wonderful New Year's! I'll see you all in 2015!

God bless!

Monday, December 22, 2014

A College Story You Won't Want to Miss...

Hey, folks! I'm back!

I know, I know... you all missed me terribly. Please, don't ruin your keyboards by sobbing onto the letter keys. 

Okay, not really, but it sounded nice.

Anywhoz, I really did miss all of you, and I'm very muchly excited to be able to get back on for a few days and catch up on the months I've missed! How is everyone??

Random epic pic of The Hobbit... for which
I am truly excited!

College is fine, or at least it was, considering I'm not there anymore. Made lots of friends, learned way too much, acted obnoxiously... you know the drill. If you have questions concerning anything about my college experience (for the first semester, at least), please leave me a comment below and I will answer it within the next few days with a post. So, please leave me lots of comments! :)

But for now, I have a story for you. It's one of those heart-warming, Hallmark-type stories that makes you feel all warm and fuzzy inside. Or, I hope it will make you feel warm. Feel fuzzy... well, I'll leave that up to you.


Once upon a time, I went to college. Among my classes was a course known as Computer Fluency which boasted a good two dozen students and a teacher who was incredibly smart and wonderful but forgot what the Start button was called. And among those two dozen students was a quiet chap known as (for sake of privacy) Friday. He sat two rows behind me, smiled at me when we passed on the sidewalk, and even ate once or twice with my cousins, sisters, friends, and me in the Dining Common. 

One day, I invited Friday to study with me and one of my cousins (Captain Oblivious) for the upcoming Computer Fluency tests. It was a rather big test, and although we really enjoyed the class, I was slightly dreading the test because I knew somehow that I was going to bomb it. The practical solution was to study, and what better way to study but with friends and cousins? Friday agreed, and with Captain and myself, we had one of the best study groups in the history of study groups. Needless to say, we all did smartly on the test. 

After that, Friday began hanging out with our group more. He enjoyed a lot of the same things we did -- epic piano music, LOTR, singing in choir, and a whole lot more. Before we knew it, he was becoming a fast and hard member of our group.

Then we became friends on Facebook. 

That afternoon, my mother called me while I was at lunch. "Hey, Kiri," she said (slightly paraphrased for the point of the story). "Who's this Friday kid you just became friends with? I think I might know him."

"Oh, he's a peach, Mom," I responded. "He's a lot of fun to hang out with."

"Good," my mother breathed a sigh of relief. "Because you might be related to him."

I think I nearly dropped the phone into my jello. "What?"

My mom wasn't sure how the connection was exactly, but she recognized his last name and stalked his page and recognized pictures of his dad and was generally excited about everything. I asked her for all the information she knew, which wasn't much, and armed with that piddly amount of knowledge, I marched off to Computer Fluency class. Friday met up with me just before class started, and I knew the time had come.

I took a deep breath. "Hey, Friday, I've got a really random question for you."

"Sure," he said. "Bring it on."

He had a cocky look on his face that clearly spoke of his opinion that I couldn't say anything to knock him off his guard. I was all too ready to prove him wrong. 

"Is your mom's name (removed for privacy's sake)?"

His expression froze. "Y-yes..."

"And your dad's name is (removed again)?"

I think I could have knocked him over with a feather at that point. "Y-yeah..."

"And you have an uncle called (removed, duh)?"

He shook the mindblown look off his face and tried to gather his wits. "Okay, that's creepy. How do you know all that?"

I merely grinned. "I think we're related."

And then the bell rang.

So, there we sat, Friday and I, going bonkers knowing we were related, but not exactly sure how the connection was there. Looking back at that class for both of us, neither one can exactly recall what the teacher said. We were too busy trying to draw mental family trees.

It was literally ten seconds after class that Friday tackled me. Not literally, you understand, because our college enforces a strict no-touching rule between guys and girls. But if he could tackle me, I think he might have.

"How are we related?!?"

We tried to talk about it for a few minutes but found no conclusion until Friday called his grandmother. She was muchly excited to discover Friday had found a distant relative and readily supplied us with half of the information we were looking for. I talked with her for a bit, and actually got asked to leave the library (the place where we were currently located) because our conversation got to be a little on the loud side. Hey! Unexpected family reunions involve some excitement and all that. Later, I called my grandmother and got the other half of the information, and together, Friday and I put together the family tree. 

Our great-grandparents (my great-grandfather and his great-grandmother) were siblings. 

Friday and I are third cousins. 
Friday and me.

*cue Disney's infamous song* It's a small world, after all.

Since then, Friday and I have become an epic set of partners in crime. I won't tell you here all of what we have done, but we definitely keep our college on its toes. That is, we would if it had toes. Imagine going to college and finding long-lost family!

So, the moral of the story is... family is epic. Especially third cousins. If you guys don't know your third cousins, you have no idea how much fun you're missing out on.

God bless!