samanthabryant: feeling purple (Default)
 #smileaday Finishing something painful. In this case, the FAFSA paperwork. My college girl asked me to do it early because there's a new scholarship she wants to apply for. It's not the worst application sort of paperwork I've ever had to do, but it's up there in the top 10 with medical forms and query letters. 
 
But it's done now and I don't have to do it again . . . until next year. 
frodo meme
samanthabryant: feeling purple (Default)

#bookeveryweek Trail of Lightning by Rebecca Roanhorse.


cover Trail of LightningMaggie Hoskie is a wonderfully complicated character at the center of an epic struggle with cosmic implications. A fast and engaging read that left me wanting more without leaving me unsatisfied with the ending of this first book in the series. I hope it continues well!


The best part:  a woman character with tragedy in her past who is realistically impacted by that and who grows through her relationships with others without finding that love is a miracle cure. Maggie is functioning in a difficult world despite her pain when the story begins and I found myself cheering for her from the get-go, hoping that she'd find her way to a better and fuller life on her own terms. Really liked a lot of the supporting characters as well.


The second best part: the mythological bits. Big Water and the Sixth World, Clan Powers, Coyote (Ma'ii), Neizghání, witches. This is not mythology I've read over and over again, so it felt fresh to me, and I really loved the way magical/mythological elements were commonplace and known to everyone without question.


The less good parts: the makeover scene (I think I'm too old for that "she cleans up so hot" moment to have the impact it might if I were actually a young adult), the wandering (I was never clear on what was guiding this journey, but they were always right about where they went next to look for a clue), and. Neizghání.  


When we finally meet Neizghání, Maggie's former mentor, "in person" he is NOT AT ALL what I was expecting based on what we'd heard about him up to that point. He seemed, well, stupid (as in un-intelligent, brutish, no subtlety) and I had trouble parsing that with Maggie's obsession with him, even given the rescue angle. I like surprises, but only when they fit in with what I do know. He didn't fit.


So, I would read more, but the story is not without its flaws.

 
samanthabryant: feeling purple (Default)
 

#smileaday Making plans.


I'm on the board of my local Friends of the Public Library. We had a meeting tonight. Now, generally, if I start a sentence about a meeting, you can expect it will end with me feeling annoyed and irritated. But that's never true with this group. They're so positive, reasonable, and proactive, full of ideas for how to make sure our library has the money it needs to continue all its amazing programs and start some new ones.


Making plans with a group of positive visionaries can be such a joy!



making plans

2019 plans

Jan. 1st, 2019 02:39 pm
samanthabryant: feeling purple (Default)
 I like lists and projects. It's something hardwired in me. There's a satisfaction in it that I don't really find anywhere else. Maybe it's a desire for gold stars on a chart. Maybe it's how I impose order on a chaotic universe. I'm not sure I care why. It's just something I like. 

For the past couple of years, I've taken on a #52weekproject and a #365dayproject. In 2017, I tried a new recipe every week and posted and responded to a poem every day. In 2018, I wrote about #dailylight every day: something good about each set of 24 hours. I also try to read a book a week (though that one doesn't quite work out on that timing: I always read more than 52 books, but they don't always neatly finish in a seven day span). I have a five year long chain of writing at least 250 words a day (which shows how well this habit building, commitment to myself thing works for me.

I know that some people hate this sort of thing, but I look at it as a commitment to myself, a promise that I will do these small things that bring me pleasure and make my days better. 

52 week projectFor this year, I'm going to play a game a week for my 52 Week Project.

My family and I are big into boardgames, card games, videogames, roleplaying games, etc.

We have too many. I won't have to buy a new game to find 52 different ones to play over the course of the year. 

I'm hoping this will get some of the ones that haven't made it off the shelves onto my table and into our hearts and minds.

I know it breaks my husband heart when a game sits unplayed. 

I'm also looking for the "us together having fun" part of that.

Our children are at branching out ages, and it's hard to find something we all love, but we always come together over the gaming table.

So, in a way, this is my promise to have more family time. 


Last year's #dailylight 365 day project proved really important to my mental health. It was a hard year. You guys know, you were there, too.

365Definitely hard on creative, sensitive sorts like me. So many of my friends suffered mental and emotional anguish and found it hard to move forward on their creative endeavors, when it felt like the world was burning down around us and our basic assumptions about the goodness of humanity were proven false and ridiculous. 

So, my #365project this year will be in a similar vein: #smileaday . I'm planning to write about one thing that made me smile each day. 

You know, the whole "even in darkness there is light" thing. Choose your wizard. Gandalf, Dumbledore. 

It helps me to remember to take a moment and notice it. 

Are any of the rest of you project people like this? What are you taking on in the new year? 

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Samantha J Bryant

March 2019

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