Your Smile On Fire

...from the song Xavia

June 2008 - Posts

  • no vote

    So I get home from work, have a short argument with my sister over the air conditioner, put some ice cream in the freezer, and turn my computer on and go to the MSN homepage (wait - is that one word or two??) where this is one of their big stories:


    and then it takes me like three times reading it for it to click, for me to connect the story about Jehovah’s Witnesses with the fact that I am a Jehovah’s Witness. (I’m like that sometimes. Once I read a book where one of the main characters had the same last name as me and the whole time I was thinking, Wow that’s a really familiar name; where have I heard that before? DUH.)


    Anyway. The point is that I was pretty surprised to see this as one of the main stories on the MSN page. It made me happy. And was kind of coincidental because just a couple weeks ago I was talking to one of my friends ABOUT THIS VERY THING (i.e. why I’m old enough to vote but don’t). (And yes, I’m aware I used i.e. incorrectly.)


    So that was cool.


    Also? I officially hate coming up with titles for my posts.

  • camp so-much-better-than-hsm

    I’m. So. Tired.


    I don’t even know why, but I am.


    Also, have you guys seen Camp Rock? Because it is like a zillion times better than stupid High School Musical. I actually really liked this one! Although I still say Disney Channel needs some better dialogue writers because EVERYTHING SOUNDS SO CHEESY. (The embarrassing thing is that I ALMOST BOUGHT THE CAMP ROCK SOUNDTRACK YESTERDAY… and, um, I still might.)


    But anyways. I managed to clean my gunked-up CDs last night and now I’ve got the pleasure of listening to a Fountains of Wayne CD that doesn’t skip. So, yay!


    But I bet you’re wondering what’s been going on in my life lately.


    Well. I’ll tell you.


    My dad is still gone. And I still miss him. And then next week my mom jets off to go see him and me and Taylor the Lovely are left to fend for ourselves for two weeks. Although that really isn’t as bad as it sounds; it’s not as if we live in the Artic and have to hunt for our food or anything. It will be fine. It will be fun. I am just a little nervous and scared. I know I’m technically an “adult,” but I don’t feel like it and this is a little nerve-wracking. But it will be fine. We will go see Hancock or something. (I want to see Wall-E too but the little sister says she DOESN’T LIKE PIXAR. What kind of human being IS SHE? Doesn’t like The Beatles, doesn’t want to see Wall-E… how sad.)


    I started my new job. Yay! I have income! This is very good news on the Mac front. Also it is not nearly as boring as my last job, so that’s good.


    Yesterday I ran into one of the ladies from the writers’ critique group I used to go to. She works at Starbucks and she talked me into coming back to the group this next Thursday. Which is. Um. Well. Let’s see… I don’t mind going back; the group wasn’t particularly helpful to me but I still kind of enjoyed it. However, I quit going way back when. Way back when BEFORE I had my essay published in Red. So I’ll have to tell them about it. And I just don’t know why this is freaking me out so much BUT IT TOTALLY IS. One thing’s for sure: I’m not reading it in front of them. That would be way too embarrassing. It’s one thing to read in front of strangers and friends and another thing entirely to read such a personal piece in front of people I kind-of-but-don’t-really know. Besides that usually when I read it there’s a point where I almost start crying and that’s just not cool. So yeah. Not reading it.


    But I am going to try and set up a reading at THE MOST AWESOME BOOKSTORE IN THE WORLD (I know, I know, I say that about pretty much every bookstore - what’s your point?) when the paperback comes out. So that’ll be good except it’ll probably just be me and none of the other girls (I don’t think any of them live around here) or Amy (or wonderful editor). Sad sad.


    AND OMG I’M WATCHING BROTHERHOOD 2.0 AND THE NEW BOOK IN THE BLURBING BOOK CLUB IS CATCHER IN THE RYE!! Which is awesome because I haven’t done that blurbing book club yet because there hasn’t been a book I cared to read but I LOVE CATCHER IN THE RYE SO MUCH. Also, how awesome would it be to have a copy of Girl at Sea signed by John Green? VERY AWESOME. Probably awesomer than having a copy of one of his own books signed by him. Because I’m weird like that.


    Anyway, to sum up: I like Camp Rock, my Fountains of Wayne CD is working, my life currenly involves my new job, my old writing group, Dad being gone, and I want a Maureen Johnson book signed by John Green. (Or a John Green book signed by Maureen Johnson; I’m not picky.)

  • oh hi i forget what the name of this is

    Dear Self,

    I have a few things to say. A few words of wisdom if you will. And you have to listen because I know SO MUCH MORE than you. So listen up.

    For starters, sometimes people say things just to say things. And sometimes those things don’t make much sense. Don’t get too wrapped around the axel about it; people are just so stupid is all and really to be honest with you I don’t think their brains always work quite right.

    Also. You know how sometimes you kind of go a little haywire and get really sad for no reason? Guess what. THERE’S A REASON. Always. You just don’t always know what that reason is and also the reasons rarely make any sense. (However they do usually have to do with your expectations for yourself and comparisons to others. Comparisons you shouldn’t necessarily be making quite so often. It might be healthy if you eased up a bit.)

    On that same note: you seem to get anxious rather easily. Also, often. I realize, of course, that you know this and are trying to stop it and I’m just here to let you know that you should keep trying. It is not healthy to be so anxious. IT IS A PROBLEM.

     While we’re hovering around the subject of problems, do you know that whenever people ask how you are doing you automatically reply, “good?” Well, you do. And not that it’s not a perfectly acceptable answer most times, but it’s just not ALWAYS. For example. Sometimes you have headaches. Actually you OFTEN have headaches (I don’t know why; probably because of all your needless anxiety) and these headaches make you snap at your mom. Or your sister. And then when they ask how you’re feeling YOU SAY YOU’RE FEELING GOOD WHEN IT IS A TOTAL LIE. (Now I know you don’t mean to lie and it just slips out, but could you check your answers before they leave your lips, please? It would really save me a lot of trouble.)

    Now for a few general tips to help you with life.

    • When you mention to your friends how weird/insane/pathetic/crazy/wrong you are, do not be suprised or taken aback when they agree. After all YOU SAID IT, not them. THEY ARE JUST BEING SUPPORTIVE.
    • Do not ask questions hoping for a certain answer; you will most always be disappointed.
    • Your best friend is always going to disagree with you. On. Everything. (Almost everything, that is.) You just have to accept this and love her anyways.
    • If this is even possible, try to remember that all those little things that crack you up about your sister make her feel bad when you tease her about them. She obviously doesn’t see how funny/cute she is and she DOESN’T GET IT when you point it out to her. In fact, just the opposite, she perceives it as you being mean to her.
    • You know how you sometimes go over things over and over again in your mind because IT JUST DOESN’T MAKE SENSE? Yeah. Stop that. Sometimes things just don’t make sense and you should be used to that by now. (The funny thing about this is you never get like this with the Big Stuff, it’s always the little stuff that consumes you in this way. You’re a very odd sort of girl.)


    Stop feeling guilty. Just quit it. Most of the things you feel guilty about are things that really have nothing to do with you anyways and the other things all have to do with your unreasonable expectations for yourself. Jordyn, you are a human. NOT PERFECT. HUMAN. Not just human either, but a TEENAGE HUMAN. Slipping up is allowed. (So is watching John & Kate Plus 8 when you think that clearly you should be doing something productive like, uh, I don’t know, saving the world or going out with people or something.)

    Speaking of GOING OUT WITH PEOPLE and having the typical life you (so often) think you should have, it’s okay. It’s okay that you don’t. Really. Other people’s lives aren’t as great as you imagine them to be and you know that when you take a step back from all the ridiculous comparisons you really do love your life. And you know why? Because it’s frikkin awesome.

    So there.

    Oh, also? You know that when you’re really in a bummy mood you can go watch Brotherhood 2.0 for a made of awesome laugh, right? Try and remember that a little more.

    With love and hugs,



  • underground penguin league

    Okay I really do have something to talk about.


    Problem: I can’t figure out how to say it.


    Solution: Talk about something else.


    Like this picture.


    Oh wait.


    A bad thing to do when you’re writing a blog post of your own is to go check out MJ’s blog. Because suddenly your mind becomes full of shiny pink Vespas and bunny rabbits and when you finally get back to your own blog you have no idea what you were supposed to be doing there in the first place.


    But I think I was talking about frozen penguins. Or something like that.


    Anyway, my mom has this Styrofoam cooler. She brought it home from work, so I’m almost afraid to ask what was in it before it came into her possession. My general rule in dealing with this thing is to STAY AWAY. Or, you know, that was the general rule until I saw the sticker on it. The sticker pictured below, the one I had to capture with my camera.

    This is the sticker.


    My fear is that this sticker, the penguin picture with the red SLASH through it, means DO NOT STORE FROZEN PENGUINS IN THIS THING.


    Which worries me, really. Because in order for warnings that come with symbols to be on something, there has to be a need for it, right? I mean those no smoking signs are clearly around to keep people from smoking, and the THIS CUP IS HOT warning on your coffee cup is there because we’re all idiots who don’t realize that coffee might be warmish.


    I get that.


    But this one just freaks me out. Because really, how many people are going around toting frozen penguins in their Styrofoam coolers? Are there a lot? Is that why they’re on the endangered list? (They are on the endangered list, right? I didn’t just make that up?) Is there an underground league of people who store penguins in these coolers or something? If so, what do they call themselves? And are they for good or for evil?


    Obviously the warning sticker would say they’re for evil. Like, these are the people who kill penguins and then sell them on the black market or something.


    But maybe this underground league is just horribly misunderstood. Maybe what they really do is rescue penguins and then send them up to the North Pole where they can live in happyness and ice for the rest of their natural lives.


    I don’t know about you guys, but I like to think that the Underground Penguin League are the good guys. (The bad guys, obviously, are KAOS.)


    **note for redthebook readers... sorry if I sometimes forget to post posts over here. I've only missed a few but it still bugs me.**

  • ergh. annoying.

    Gar! This is annoying. It's either me or the site, but it's not letting me paste things into the litte text box. (Um, yeah, I'm not really sure what it's called) so I'm not posting my latest entry because I'm just too lazy to type it all up. It wasn't that interesting anyway. Plus I'm not sure if anyone even reads my blog over here, but I hope so because that would make my heart SO HAPPY.




  • her middle years

    Following up on years zero through six, here are years seven through twelve in the life of The Jordyn.


    Year Seven.


    We (which in this case refers to my family: me, Taylor the Lovely, and our mom and dad) move to Texas. I am waving goodbye to Granma as l possibly can see her. I am crying. I am not happy about leaving. Texas surprises me; it is not the mountain landscape I am accustomed to, but instead is flat. Everywhere you look: flat. There is no snow and we have tornado drills at school and it is HOT.


    I remember a best friend named Afrin, a girl named Nishi who everyday told me that Jordyn was a boy’s name, and a second grade teacher I will never forget. I remember afterschool daycare, a tornado warning, and that creepy old Criter house that my dad was always teasing us about venturing into. (You guys, this place was really creepy, and I’m not just saying that because I was seven at the time; it really was.) I also remember letters from Lu and Janet and Granma, the picture Lu sent me of Bradley and Madley (so little at the time), and Granny asking me over the phone if I had a boyfriend yet (which I found very very odd considering I was in second grade).


    Year Eight.


    We are not in Texas for long; when I am eight we move back home. We arrive in time for Clint’s high school graduation. When his name is called everyone cheers, louder than is cheered for anyone else, and Little Jordyn feels special because she is his cousin NIECE, I’m his niece, not sure why I keep thinking cousin.


    Year Nine.


    It is third grade and a variety of things happen. Mason (Clint’s son, my cousin) is born. I am in the ELP (Extended Learning Program) class with Olivia and Keegan. Olivia is in love with Keegan this year and Keegan keeps m&ms in his pockets (Olivia is no longer in love with him, but he might still keep m&ms in his pockets… that’s the way to become valedictorian, folks!) (Yes, Keegs was one of the valedictorians. Do you capitalize valedictorian?)


    Also our ELP class gets fishies and me and Olivia, (if I remember correctly) much to the chagrin of Katie, get to choose names for two of them. We have one named Bubbles and one, I think, named Star. I don’t remember who named which one.


    Year Ten.


    This is the age I, for a long time, wanted to stay forever. It was the year Quinn (yet another cousin - Janet’s first baby) is born and the year I am in fourth grade.


    Something odd that happened in fourth grade was that I had a crush on a boy (notthe odd part, although he was the first boy I like liked, lol) and the ENTIRE CLASS FOUND OUT. I don’t know how this happened and I don’t know how I was so oblivious to it. Well, wait. Oblivious isn’t the right word; I knew, I just didn’t care too much. I guess I was hard to embarrass back in fourth grade, which is impossible to believe now. I must have just been so busy making up the alien language and pretending my grandpa’s broken down lawn mower was a spaceship.


    Man, I was a weird ten year old. (No, this hasn’t diminished, although I no longer pretend to time travel or be an alien. Or a spacegirl who DISCOVERS ALIENS.)


    Year Eleven.


    Eleven eleven eleven. What can I say about year eleven except that when Taylor the Lovely read my journal from this time she made a mention of how many mean girls there were in my fifth grade class. Which, you know, is an entirely true statement. I did not like being eleven. I probably hated it more than any other year, which is saying a lot when you consider…


    Year Twelve.


    I know that before this I had stuff that happened. Heart surgeries and kindergarten tachycardia and the like, but year twelve is probably 83% (if not more) of the reason I HATE IT WHEN PEOPLE ASSUME THAT JUST BECAUSE I AM YOUNG I AM HEALTHY AND HAVEN’T GONE THROUGH ANYTHING.


    Come on people. Wise up. Sick people are everywhere.


    There were two surgeries this year, tons of x-rays, too many night spent in hospital beds, and fifty thousand episodes of The Cosby Show. First there was the Fontan procedure, which is an open heart surgery that basically involves a surgeon rerouting the plumbing in your heart. The second was getting a Herrington (sp?) rod put in my back, which isn’t exactly pleasant. We travelled FAR FAR AWAY for these surgeries because apparently not every surgeon thinks bloodless heart surgery/back surgery is necessarily the smartest thing to do.


    The surgeries went well and what I remember of them isn’t so much the actual medical stuff, but watching nonstop episodes of The Cosby Show because it always seemed to be on, some doctor putting me on a weird diet for some rediculous reason that I think had to do with sodium and which they quickly took me off of because at twelve I was NOT someone who needed to lose weight, having a nurse who always said “pee pee” like I was a two year old, getting a teddy bear from my dad’s company or from people at my dad’s company or something like that, going back to school between surgeries and having everyone in my class give me get well cards and banners, my sister pretending (and really believing?) she could speak spanish, the family around me, and wanting a Milky Way bar, as well as a Nachos lunchable so badly when I was on my “diet.” (What can I say friendlies - when all you’re doing is watching tv, COMMERCIALS WORK!)


    Once again, I DON’T DIE. But I do start junior high in a BACK BRACE, which is probably on my Top Twenty List of Horrors, and I’m really (really really really) not the sort of person to be vain like that.

  • Yes, I'm That Cool

    The plan had been growing in my mind for a while and today I finally bit the bullet: I bought me and Taylor the Lovely digital cameras.


    Target. Red Nikon Coolpix (yes, we both have the same color). Yeah, it was a lot of money, especially since I got her one too. But I’m happy.


    So happy.

     This is the camera. Well, it’s Tay’s camera… which is exactly like mine.




    Haha. I’ll try to do a real post later tonight and will probably be posting pics soon too possibly. So stay tuned.

  • stuck in second

    I am always second place, always almost good enough, always the leftover.


    Seventh grade, science class. It was the honors class so a good portion of my friends were in the class. And while I wasn’t Miss Popularity, I was never Miss Unpopular either; I had more than enough friends, really I did. And because of the whole “honors student” thing, there were always a lot of us in the same classes. So if I had to guess I’d say that I probably had at least five or six friends in that science class seventh grade. (Five or six friends in one science class! I can barely claim that many friends the world over nowadays!) Yet when we paired up with lab partners who was the last one?




    I was friends with so many, but not good enough friends that they wouldn’t pick someone else over me. In the end I wound up with Molly because the majority of her friends were in other classes and she had a little bit of the same Second Place Syndrome that I do.


    In eighth grade science it was the same thing. Except in that class we had an odd number of students so since I was literally the last one without a partner, our teacher made the girl who was his assistant that period, but not really part of our class, be my partner for the frog dissection.


    Because nobody wanted me as a partner more than they wanted someone else as a partner.


    And weirdly, sadly, this seems to be a pattern for my life. I feel like I always care about others more than they care about me, like if everyone in the world made a list of the ten friends who matter most to them my friends would always be higher up on my list than I would be on theirs. Like I have stories about everyone else while their stories are always of others. I realize this is a very pathetic way to think, but sometimes I get to thinking it and wondering: do I really care about others more than they care about me (and if so, why?), or is it just like I’ve been told once or twice before: that I don’t see myself the way others do, that I see myself as more of a loser than I am.


    Is this feeling a reality or is it a product of my jealousies?


    And why do I struggle so much with jealousy; could it be that I’m still trying to build my confidence back up to that glorious level I remember it being back when I was fourteen? Because really, I thought I was doing good but the smallest things will bring me down a few notches.


    Moving was the first confidence sinker. I was different from the other girls in every superficial way possible and it did bother me. I looked twelve when they looked seventeen; I was into (and am into) books while they were into fashion. I had been listening to Alan Jackson when I was younger while they had been listening to the Spice Girls. (Really? People really listened to the Spice Girls? Even now I find it hard to believe.)


    The sleepover was the second confidence sinker. Yes, Jordyn, wear your blue jeans and your western looking blouse and your not-old-but-not-new sneakers with your frizzy dark hair; I’m sure you’ll fit right in. (The theory that if you’re happy with yourself it can’t bother you when you stick out like a sore thumb is a LIE, folks. It still hurts.) Dancing to the Spice Girls, being ignored by nearly everyone, and feeling so out of place when we wandered around the mall were marks of a torturous night. One girl’s mom actually CAME AND APOLOGIZED TO ME FOR “THROWING ME INTO THE LIONS’ DEN” AS SHE SO KINDLY PUT IT.


    Too much friendlessness was the third confidence sinker. Realizing my old friends were going on without me; losing friends and not being able to gain any new ones, having all my attempts knocked down, feeling so out of it. Not fun, friendlies, NOT FUN. And the worst part was feeling like it was all my fault, like if I had just been more interested in what the other girls were interested in, more aware of things like the Spice Girls, more outgoing, more pretty, then I would have had friends. The sad thing is that I still believe that. If I had came out of Arizona and been my sister at fifteen instead of ME AT FIFTEEN I’m sure I would have had friends.


    The fourth confidence sinker involved a crush on a boy that did not go so well and thinking that even when I felt like I was getting along with someone here, I really wasn’t, and like I was so incredibly stupid for liking him. Mostly though, what it involved was losing someone I had considered something of a friend even back when I thought I would never have another friend again, someone I felt comfortable around.


    The fifth confidence sinker was four months of nothing but drama, being a naive girl who didn’t realize EVERYTHING SHE WAS DOING was just a magnet for petty drama. Feeling even more people slipping away from me, alienated, after I thought there was no one left to alienate even if I had wanted to. It was thinking, oh no, this is my life now; I’m that girl who has no steady friends, that girl who keeps pushing people away and she’s not even sure how to stop it.


    And life goes on.


    Eventually moving to a different state should become a hazy memory,


    a sleepover is forgotten by everyone except the girl it was awful for, 


    prolonged friendlessness becomes such a state of being that your bestie (who lives too, too far away) points out that maybe you’ve been without friends so long that you’ve begun to accept it as being your life and maybe that’s not such a good thing,


    the heartbreak becomes a thing of the past, so far back it feels stupid to even be able to remember,


    and the drama becomes something disgusting to think about.


    And I should be good as gold, brand new, well, because none of the above should matter in the least and I hate to admit that while the actual events don’t really matter anymore, the feelings they produced still do. The doubts, fears, insecurities, sadnesses, and anger still linger. They still have the power to make me less than the girl I am, still have the power to make me forget how amazing my life is as a whole; how incredible my friends are (in spite of the fact that 96% are so far away), how lucky I am (to even be alive), how many things make me smile every day.


    Mostly they still have the power - much as I hate it - to make me feel less than. Jealous, insecure, unsure, weary and tired; to make me feel not myself, like I’m going to be stuck in second place forever.


    * Note: I have debated myself as to whether or not to put some of these things in here, especially seeing as how I know some of my readers are people who KNOW EXACTLY WHAT I’M REFERRING TO (and should feel free to comment - hopefully I did not offend), but in the end personal expression won out, so here it is.


    **Note for Redthebook: I wrote this last night on wordpress and am just now getting around to posting it here.

  • a hundred happies

    Another Project Self post.

    I’ve been meaning to do this for a while, to make a list of one hundred things that make me happy, and I encourage you all to do the same. (And if you do on your blog, please comment/link to it so I can read it!) I think a lot of times we get so preoccupied in life, so caught up in the negative or humdrum things, that we forget to notice the little things that make us really happy. And I don’t know about you, but it’s the seemingly insignificant things in life that put a smile on my face. An email from a friend, a glass of iced tea, watching The Office on DVD. That sort of stuff.

    So here’s my list.

    One Hundred Things That Make The Jordyn Happy:

    1. Iced tea, also known as the miracle drink.
    2. Buying CDs and listening to them.
    3. Buying books and reading them.
    4. Truly awesome music, and more often than not it’s country.
    5. My little sister.
    6. The way Michelle is always there for me even when we don’t see eye to eye.
    7. Coffeehouses, even though I don’t drink coffee.
    8. Get Smart.
    9. The game that has no name but has been around in my household forever. The music one, where you have to say the artist before anyone else does.
    10. Wonderful, cute, cozy t-shirts. They make me feel comfortable.
    11. My stuffed doggy, Pongo.
    12. Writing in my paper journals.
    13. Bloggeryness.
    14. Finding beautiful and memorable quotes.
    15. Discovering a new song that makes my heart happy. (The latest is Heidi Newfeild’s Johnny and June.)
    16. Psychology Today.
    17. Getting positive feedback on my writing.
    18. The act of writing, the feeling of fingers on a keyboard or a pen on a page.
    19. High fives.
    20. Bubba Shot the Jukebox.
    21. Phone calls with Sarah.
    22. Letters from Granma.
    23. My friendship with Erika, which grew after bonding over boy troubles and Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants.
    24. Realizing I am not the only one.
    25. Jim and Pam and the rest of The Office.
    26. Getting with the four.
    27. Recommending books or music to people and having them enjoy them. (I am a master of the book recommends.)
    28. Talking to Ash, who is one of those people who is just so sweet and caring and awesome.
    29. Being able to have an intelligent, interesting discussion with someone who is has a different opinion than I.
    30. Making progress with whatever novel I’m currently working on.
    31. Inside jokes.
    32. People close to me being happy.
    33. When it snows.
    34. When it rains
    35. The family - immediate and extended.
    36. Getting mail.
    37. Memories, which are, yes, bittersweet, but make me happy in spite of that fact.
    38. Feeling like something I wrote is actually good, being proud of it.
    39. Kids.
    40. Boardwalks, carnivals, fairs.
    41. Singing in my car when I’m alone. It’s the only time I can’t embarrass myself singing and even then it’s doubtful.
    42. Having fun playing board games with groups of people.
    43. Laughing over stupid stuff.
    44. Praying.
    45. Jones soda. (Yes, I went straight from “praying” to “Jones soda.”)
    46. Food Network, especially Unwrapped, Ace of Cakes, and Diners, Drive-Ins, and Dives.
    47. Finding favorites on flickr.
    48. Honest apologies, even the kind that come late.
    49. Beauty in the everyday.
    50. Candid pictures that capture real moments.
    51. My name.
    52. Bookstores.
    53. Bubbles.
    54. Trying on hats and sunglasses.
    55. Lip gloss, as long as it smells good. (I also love Bath & Body Works.)
    56. Doodling hearts and song lyrics in the margins of my pages.
    57. Notebooks.
    58. Italian cream sodas.
    59. Nerds, both the candy and the people.
    60. Corny jokes.
    61. Beloved characters like Curious George, Charlie Brown, Goofy, and Tinkerbell.
    62. Beauty and the Beast, especially the scene with Belle walking through town with her nose in a book. That was honestly what inspired me to learn to read and walk at the same time.
    63. Radiator Springs.
    64. The time capsule, which for some reason I keep calling the TIME MACHINE.
    65. Jammies.
    66. Wacky socks.
    67. Cute love stories. (I suggest: Scrambled Eggs at Midnight.)
    68. Too many books to name.
    69. Too many songs to name.
    70. The moon and the stars.
    71. Airplanes, airports, aviation, flying.
    72. Funny commercials.
    73. Carousels.
    74. Colorfulness. Green, blue, yellow, red, brown, all of the above.
    75. You’ve Got Mail.
    76. Just in general, friends far and near.
    77. Getting that zoom feeling, which I tried to explain to someone once but failed miserably.
    78. Hugs.
    79. Feeling like maybe I can handle growing up.
    80. Knowing that Jehovah God is there and that he cares about me.
    81. Riding in cars with people. (Just not always when I’m the one driving.)
    82. Exploring other places.
    83. Trying.
    84. Brotherhood 2.0 and Nerdfighters.
    85. My grandparents’ house.
    86. Fireworks.
    87. Spontaneous laughter.
    88. Feeling like I’m bonding with someone else, cheesy as that sounds.
    89. Confidence.
    90. My shiny orange cellphone (and writing myself notes on it).
    91. People who know how to spell and when people write phone numbers like so: (000) 555-1234
    92. Disney-Pixar Monopoly.
    93. Finding Red in bookstores.
    94. Giving people nonsense nicknames.
    95. When people I don’t know smile at me or say hello.
    96. Song lyrics. (Yes, I know a lot of these things relate to music.)
    97. Randominity.
    98. Making up words.
    99. The numbers 99, 7, 86, 101, and 18.
    100. So much more.
  • my personal heaven

    Hello friendlies.


    I saw Red at another bookstore today.


    Not. Even. Kidding.


    Clint and the kids wanted to go to the beach again, so me and Mom dropped them off and then wandered around one of the areas near the beach and found this brilliant bookstore (the one my friend’s mom had wanted to show me when I went to the graduation dinner). It was an indie bookstore, which I loved, because THE PEOPLE HAD ACTUALLY READ THE BOOKS!! And so I asked some dude who worked there if they had the book and we found it. I told him I was one of the authors and was hoping to set up some sort of reading there, so he gave me the email for their events coordinator and I’m so excited. Hopefully I can get some more girls out here and make it a more-than-one-person reading/signing if it happens. That would be absofruitly awesome.


    (I seem to be saying “absofruitly” a lot lately.)


    So that part was awesome, and also it was ironic because what book happens to be right close to Red? THE MOTHER-DAUGHTER PROJECT. Man, that just cracked me up considering the topic of my essay was fighting with my own mom.


    Pictorial evidence?

     Also, notice how the book is face out? It was spine out before but after I told the dude I was one of the writers he turned it face out, which I thought was pretty awesome.


    And in semi-related news, let me share this story:


    I was standing in the teens section of this amazing bookstore and one of the people who worked there came up and asked if I needed help finding anything or if I wanted a recommendation. And after I told him I would love a recommend, the following conversation happened.


    him: Well what kind of books do you read?


    me: Teen books, but not usually scifi or fantasy. Mainstream stuff I guess.


    him: Okay, so like about relationships, that kind of stuff?


    me: Yeah.


    him: So you’ve probably read The Clique and Gossip Girl then.


    me: [only slightly aghast at this insinuation] No. No, no, no.


    him: Well that’s good.


    Of course, no offense meant to those of you who do like those books but, I’m just not a fan so I thought that was pretty cool.

  • her early years

    This idea is taken right from Nothing But Bonfires’ timelines series. Today, years zero through six.


    Year Zero.


    I am born. A month later I’m flown down to the valley in an emergency because apparently I’m turning blue or something. Oops, there’s something wrong with my heart and lots of flurrying to save me; surgery and pediatric cardiologist and probably lots of frantic phone calls flying around my family. I imagine them the way all phone calls of this type go; “So wait - what’s going on?” “Huh?” “Is she okay?”


    That type of thing. I’m sure it took years off of everyone’s lives, especially my parents, and it is only the beginning.


    But let me save you the drama: I DON’T DIE.


    Year One.


    Relatively uneventful. I am a baby and I am still bald and tiny and chubby. (Yes, I used to be chubby back when I was a wee little tyke.) I’m pretty much the first kid in the family and thinking back on it, the fact that I was THE ONLY ONE is a little scary. Aunts, uncles, parents, grandparents… and Jordyn. How strange.


    Year Two.


    Also uneventful. I don’t remember anything from these uber-early years, but there was no Taylor the Lovely; me and my parents lived in a trailer next to my grandparents house, and when Grandma would babysit me Clint was always around. I seem to recall him, Lu, and Janet having lots of fun teasing me mercilessly. Especially him. HE WAS RUTHLESS. (Of course, I was two so I was probably something of a baby.) I remember not liking his friends and I remember Janet and Lu saying, “Jordyn, your hair’s brown.” Even though I kept trying to tell them it was black.


    Guess what? It’s brown. Of course by the time I finally figured it out I had a first grade teacher who thought it was black and looked at me like I was stupid when I told her it was brown. I felt so mad too, I was like, they’ve been telling me it’s brown since I was a baby and now you’re telling me it’s black and I don’t know who to believe!!


    Year Three.


    Taylor is born and I still don’t like the name “Taylor” more than the lovely names I had chosen (Purple Curtain Rod or Orange Curtain Rod). I stay with Lu that night and Richard is working (okay now I’m eighteen and just SUDDENLY that doesn’t make sense to me; it was midnight… okay whatever, moving on) and this was before Bradles and Madles so I was sleeping in the bed with Lu and then in the middle of the night she woke me up and asked me if I wanted to go to the hospital to see my mom and the baby sister, so we went in the middle of the night.


    And my first memory of my sister is this, which my mom says is sad, but it’s really not:


    I’m standing outside the hospital room and the lights are off, it is dark. In the darkness I can’t see anything, but I can hear a baby SCREAMING AS LOUD AS HUMANLY POSSIBLE. And in that moment, the first thought I have of my just-born baby sister, is, I hope she isn’t going to be this loud forever.


    She is though.


    Year Four.


    Bradley is born and I want his parents to name him Benjamin. As you can see, my name choices have become much more, uh, conventional in the last year. Lu is on bedrest with him and when she goes to the hospital Grandma goes to and Clint is left babysitting me, which at the time seemed really strange. I don’t remember what we did, but I remember thinking it was cool that he was babysitting me. Mostly what I remember though, is that even before Brad was born I was really excited for him. It was almost like I knew how awesome he was going to be before he was even here.


    So he was born. And he was a baby, and at first Taylor looked at him funny (we have proof of this in a picture), like what is this alien baby doing on my turf? But then they became friends.


    And there were three.


    Year Five.


    I go to school! I have a red plastic backpack with characters from some tv show I’ve never seen, but everyone in my class seems to love it and in fact me and my best friend Emily trade backpacks (hers is Minnie Mouse) for a day. Various things happen in kindergarten: I make friends (Emily, Jaymeson, Lacy, Kelsey), Jaymeson steals my name card every day, letter people come, I lose my beloved teddy bear, and I go to the hospital (yes, again) when I have a bout of tachycardia during circle time. (And yes, I just said a “bout of tachycardia,” as if I had a headache or some other common ailment. Not that headaches are even that common in kindergarten.)


    It was Emily’s “special day” too, and I had to miss it. Just because my heart was suddenly beating so wildly that I couldn’t see and briefly considered that maybe I was spontaneously going blind. Within seconds, it seems, of telling the teacher what is going on, I am laying down in the nurses office and kind of out of it (did I pass out? I don’t know) and there are firefighters fussing over me. Aaand of course now I realize they probably weren’t firefighters, they were probably EMTs, and they probably weren’t fussing over me like old grandmas, they were probably trying to save my life.


    I’ll spare you the drama, and there was plenty of it: I LIVE AGAIN. (But boy, these brushes with death really take it out of a kid. No wonder I’m always worn out.)


    Year Six.


    Yep, that’s right: MADISONA IS BORN!!! And I wanted to name her Lacey, after my friend and also because I thought it was the most beautiful name ever.


    Like Taylor, Madi is also crying the first time I see her in the hospital room with her mom. However, she STOPS CRYING when she sees me, not even kidding you, and it marks the beginning of many (many, many) years of trying to get the girl to calm down.


    And now there are four of us and I am no longer the only one in the family.


    **Yes, it did occur to me while I was writing this that my early years seem to be split between someone being born and me having some sort of medical emergency. I don’t know why that is, but it does make things exciting.


  • a good night

    Last night was my friend’s graduation dinner, which pretty much marked the first time in FOREVER that the Jordyn got out with people. It seems like I did more stuff before the move despite the fact that I now live in a place where you can actually do stuff.


    • I sat and talked with people who, yes, were three years younger than me, but really super nice. Plus I got their phone numbers so maybe we’ll get to hang out again? Honestly, I don’t mind having friends younger than me.
    • I gave my friend her graduation gift, which she told me she loved. A relief. Hopefully she wasn’t lying. Lol.
    • Me and my friend and sister walked down near the beach, up on this really grassy area. The ocean looked absolutely beautiful, like something out of a movie, and I tried to take a picture of it with my phone but the flash turned everything all white and without the flash things were too dark to see. But trust me, it was amazing. I wish I had a picture to show, but maybe it’s the sort of thing where you’d have to be there.
    • I ordered some sort of macaroni and cheese. It was way spicy, but very good.
    • I took pictures of people when they weren’t looking or when they didn’t know. It was way fun.
    • I feel like my friendship with the girl whose dinner it was, the only friendship I really have here, is still just beginning even though we’ve known each other and kindasorta been friends for about two years now. So I’m happy about that and trying to not do anything to screw it up, like I seem to have a pattern of doing to my friendships here.


    In any case, I have more things to talk about (like omg, my uncle and cousins are out! Yay!) but that’s all for now, friendlies.

  • that girl in the background

    I am generally a very calm person, very even keeled. People have mentioned it to me, stating that I have a calm spirit, a peaceful demeanor. My emotions are strong, but they exist below the surface; I’m not one to blow up in a fit of temper, or to go wild with excitement. I’m even. I’m a pond on its stillest day, tiny ripples and nothing more disrupting the quiet surface.


    And I wonder why this is - why I am not dramatic or loud like others, why nothing seems to get to me enough? Why my excitement never seems to show itself, why my distress is so easily covered over. I’ve had panic attacks before when I was in a group and nobody noticed; I wonder if this is a testament to me being able to act like I’m fine when it happens, or to others just being oblivious to me. I’m leaning towards the first one, and I wonder if this is a good thing, my stillness, my calm, or if it is just another thing helping me, pushing me towards invisibility.


    I’m surprised when people notice me. Honestly I am. I always expect that others make more of an impact on me than I make on them and I’m starting to realize it’s true, but hopefully just because I am more observant, always watching others, always making mental notes. Noticing people who don’t notice me. (This all sounds very pitiful, I realize, as if I am having a little pity party for myself. But no worries; I’m definitely not. I am slightly detached from myself when I analyze facets of my personality and I refraining from pitying myself is something I learned to do long ago.)


    In any case, I often feel invisible. I’m like the girl who sits behind you in class but whose name you never remember when you run into her at Starbucks. I’m the girl who’s always there, but just slightly out of sight. It’s like I’m in the peripheral vision of everyone around me except a few.


    And I’m not sure how to change that or if I even would want to. There’s a certain amount of freedom in invisibility. In child development we learned that during adolescence teenagers feel like everyone is interested in them, everyone is looking at them; I never thought that. Instead I thought nobody was interested in me, nobody was looking at me. And I just got used to it, accepting the role that I had either chosen or fell into. Sometimes it sucks, but more often than not I kind of like it.


    In a strange way, and I know how little sense this makes, but being unnoticed, being invisible, it made me confident.

  • i finally own pixar

    So I’ve been thinking, friendlies. You have to have a certain amount of ego to post your life on the internets in the form of bloggeryness. I mean, even if you don’t think of yourself as a particularly narcissistic person (I don’t), there still must be a little bit of that if you think anyone is interested in reading about your daily life.


    I mean, I think we call all pretty much agree that daily life is, for the most part, boring. Get up, do whatever it is you do, and then go to bed. AND DON’T YOU JUST HATE THOSE PEOPLE WHO BLOG INCESSENTLY ABOUT THEIR SLEEP TROUBLES?


    But anyways. Wanna hear about yesterday?


    Well I’m telling you either way.


    Yesterday I realized this long summer stretching out ahead of me. You know, now that I’m not getting a job. The reasons for me not getting a job are complex and many-layered, but trust me you would understand if you lived in my family; things are always up in the air, we’re never quite sure what’s going on until it happens. And so now that I’m not getting a job I pretty much have nothing to do. I mean, writing of course, and babysitting if that happens, but other than that… wow.


    The future is, like, empty. Which I figure makes it a good time to go over my summer goals and see which ones I can accomplish. Maybe make some amendments over at the Goals page?


    In addition to realizing the blankness of the summer ahead, I also got DISNEY-PIXAR MONOPOLY. And you would know how huge this is if you knew the four’s longstanding history with Monopoly. It started one summer a few years before the move, when we played EVERY SINGLE DAY. And it continued. On. And on. And on. And now whenever we get together we just HAVE TO PLAY MONOPOLY and I’ve been saying I’d buy the Disney version forever.


    And I finally have.


    And Taylor the Lovely beat me at it yesterday, but is that really surprising to anyone? I once played with a friend and I HAD NINE HOTELS and SHE HAD THREE HOUSES… AND SHE WON. Not even kidding.


    In any case, the Disney-Pixar version is adorable. The houses are traffic cones! The hotels are barns! You can be Sully or Nemo or Buzz or Mr. Incredible or Remy or Lightning McQueen! All of the properties are places from the movies! You can actually own the Sewers of Paris! Or Andy’s Room! And, yes, I realize I am beginning to sound like a commercial but I LOVE DISNEY-PIXAR MONOPOLY. (Really? Does this really surprise you? I mean it combines two of my favorite things: Pixar and Monopoly. All it needs to make it more awesome is the cone of silence.)

  • a life in words

    Do you ever get that feeling in you that you just have to write? Even though you really have nothing to write about and your mind isn’t actually coming up with anything, you still need the feeling of fingers on a keyboard and thoughts flowing onto the screen?


    It’s what’s happening to me right now. 11:11 at night, my sister in the trundle bed, me sitting on my bed (on my new mattress!) in my pajamas, listening to my finetune, needing to write. 


    This is why I’ll become a writer. Simply because I’m so submerged in it, practically drowning, passionate, obsessed, whatever you want to call it. I’m that girl who practices her cello seven hours a day, hoping that eventually she’ll get a chance to play Carnegie Hall. Except instead of a cello I’ve got a keyboard, and instead of Carnegie Hall I’ve got visions of the NYTimes Bestsellers list dancing in my head. I try to remember when this started and I can’t; I get the feeling it goes back as far as I do, maybe even before the days of Hooked-on-Phonics and Easy Readers.


    I remember staying up nights back when me and Taylor the Lovely shared a room, telling her stories about teddybears come alive, about fairies who lived in the forest, my own Betsy-Tacy-Tib stories. I remember her falling asleep, my voice still alive in the dark, knowing the stories were no good but not caring enough to stop. Just telling them, even if they sucked, was of an utmost importance to me, and she always seemed to like them no matter how awful they were.


    I remember second grade, writing short stories that were terrible but that I loved. Stories that weren’t entirely fiction as they were peopled with the characters from my real life - me and my sister, our cousins, my parents and grandparents - I hadn’t yet mastered the concept of reality v. fantasy, but I knew I wanted to create stories, create entire worlds, in my head.


    I remember my frosh year English teacher, Mrs. Peterson. I remember the ‘F’ I got on my first paper in her class, how I cried when I got home and later found out I wasn’t the first freshman girl she’d made cry. I remember her ’show don’t tell’ stamp and all the red marks on my papers. I remember standing at her desk as she outlined everything that was wrong, telling me to rewrite it; I traded my F’s for D’s and D’s for C’s and, eventually, my C’s for B’s. I took note of her criticism, wanting to be able to make the words work together the way I envisioned them. Wanting to make my words flow, make my thoughts flawless on the page. I wanted perfection, which I have never, probably will never, achieve in my writing.


    And now I am older, past bedtime stories of teddybears and fairies, past the shoddy half-fictions, and still trying to make it all work. Still trying to get the words how I see them. I imagine this must be what an artist struggles with, wanting what is on the canvas to capture what he sees in his mind, what he wants the rest of the world to be able to also see.


    I don’t know what drives this whatever you call it, this compusion, this obsession, this passion. All I know is that it doesn’t end. I format sentences in my head, I narrate my life in first-person, often from the time I wake up until the time I drift to sleep. I see scenes and characters where there is no story and am faced with the challenge of creating a world for them to inhabit. It is frustrating and time-consuming, and I love it. I have never thought that maybe this isn’t for me, that maybe I should consider sanity and make teaching my Plan A. I have never thought that if I never make it, if I am never in a Barnes and Noble, never get reviewed in even the smallest of newspapers, that I will stop writing.


    There is no doubt that I couldn’t stop even if I wanted to.

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Oct. 15 [going to work soon] [two school essays due; majorly nervous about both] [remember when i wrote that short story where the girl said "majorly" every other WORD practically? ha]