Thank You to lamardeuse

A belated Thank You to lamardeuse for her help with something I was looking for.
Here is your reward:

feel free to also take that as a prompt for a Sherlock/John story ;)

Looking forward to reading your Cabin Pressure story soon!

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The death of a hobby

I can't write anymore.
I've finally come to that conclusion a few days ago. Real Life has put my writing hobby on the backburner for a long time now, even though I've tried to drabble and jot down ideas and snippets that come into my head at odd hours of the day, but it never develops into anything coherent anymore. Somewhere between caring for a house, 4 kids (3 of my own and my goddaughter), and trying to earn a little pocket money with freelance online translations, my creative writing brain cells have taken their leave.
I still read, though. As much fanfiction as my tired head will let me at night after everyone is finally in bed and I'm "off the clock" and can indulge in some reading. I've gotten into a few different fandoms now, e.g. Avengers (LOVED the movie), Spartacus, Sherlock BBC, etc. That's my newest obsession. I'm openly addicted to this show, watched all 6 episodes repeatedly and love them all. As a long-time Sherlock Holmes fan (the ACD books) I am absolutely delighted at the brilliance of the writers of the show, how they've modernized the original adventures, wove references of Doyle's stories into the show, and kept true to the characters of the books. The actors, especially, are brilliant: Love Benedict Cumberbatch as Sherlock (have never before heard of the actor before, but he's made me into a fangirl), and how he brings out all of Sherlock's quirks. And, of course, the EYES! It's been a looong time since I've sighed out loud over someone's eyes *grins*.
And Martin Freeman plays sweet, ever-patient and polite, not to mention long-suffering, Dr. Watson soooo well! Those two are a match made in heaven. (When has this post become a Sherlock fangirl glee......?)
And thankfully there is some excellent Sherlock fanfiction out there. So plenty for me to read, but --- nothing to write.

I fall short of coming up with anything good in every category: characterization, dialogue, plot, etc.....I have WIP's on my computer that have literally sat there untouched for years. My fingers are itching to finish them, but my brain is not in tune with my fingers.

Thank you for everyone who sometimes still reads my old stuff. The sporadic comments every once in a while from FF.net and the hit counter on A3 make me smile :)

Archive Of Our Own ROCKS!!

Hey, long time no post! But that's just the way it works with RL and me :(

But then along came Archive Of Our Own, and it's an excellent fanfiction site! The ease with which you can search for fics in exactly the category you want is awesome!

I started posting all of my old stories from Fanfiction.net to AO3. My Boukenger and Hurricanger stories are up, I've finished posting all fics in my PRNS Shane/Dustin series, and now I'm working on posting all Cam/Hunter stories. It's awesome that I'm not restricted there in regards to ratings. On FF.net, I had to tone down the more explicit stories and the NC-17 rated ones I had to post on other websites. On AO3 I can post them all in one place and in their original, unedited version! Love it!!

Posting those stories is so much fun, and I shamelessly admit that it's the perfect excuse to re-read all of my old stories. Some of those I haven't looked at in years, so it's nice to go down memory lane :)
If anyone feels like revisiting some of those old fics, here is the link to my AO3 account: http://archiveofourown.org/users/MzDany

And all thanks to an AO3 invite code from the wonderful coffeebuddha (thank you so much for that again, girl!!! :))

Plane ticket rant

I'm so frustrated right now!

I have been online in a literal crusade for the past few days to find at least halfway affordable prices for plane tickets to Germany. It's downright criminal what the airlines are charging these days! It's not like I'm flying to Australia or Hong Kong, just from Philly to Frankfurt!

And since I have to schlepp all my kids along, I need 4 tickets. We're talking thousands of Dollars. I've had a stomach ache for days now, every time I close my laptop in frustration. I haven't been home, haven't seen most of my family for two years, and my mother hasn't even met her 18-month old granddaughter yet. She can't come over here because she can't leave my ailing grandmother alone for longer periods of time, and I don't know if I can afford to fly home.

LJ-Friends, do anyone of you know of any bargain sites for airline tickets???? I would very much appreciate any input, suggestions, and links.

Thank you ! :)


Wow - a few weeks ago I'm casually cruising through Netflix' Instant Play feature just get some ideas as to what to watch, and I come across this show called "Firefly". Never heard of it, but it sounds interesting, so I watch the pilot epi. And not 5 minutes into this show I AM HOOKED!
I don't remember the last time this has happened to me. I mean, even the theme music is awesome!
Space Cowboys! Literally! With Serenity looking like a steel horse! LOVE IT!
Every thing about this show is just perfect! The story, THE CREW, the bantering, the brawlings!
I'm sitting on my couch, loving every minute of every episode and wondering where this show has been for the past 5 years of my life!
And then I get to episode 14 and it just stops! And I can't believe they just....quit producing this spectacular show. Who was the moron who pulled the plug? There were sooo many loose ends, so many questions left open. ARGH!!
I sooo wanted (and still want to know) who Shepherd Brooks really was. There were so many clues that he wasn't just a shepherd, and the movie didn't clear anything up either! If anything, it raised more questions: Why was he suddenly off the ship and on this colony? And let's not even go towards the end of the movie.....:(
Don't get me wrong, I LOVED the movie! The action was breathtaking and downright INSANE at the end. Sad, too, of course, but excellent nevertheless.
And I was so happy to finally see Simon and Kaylee kiss at the end. Sooo overdue! (The doctor's such a virgin ;) )

This show and the movie is definitely on my "Watch Again" list.
And Nathan Fillion - aaaah, what a man, what an actor, what a smile. I'm putting all the "Castle" episodes into my Netflix queue right now!

Ah - just what was missing in my life. A new fanfiction obsession....

Taking stock of 2010

A belated "Happy New Year" to all my LJ friends!!

Since I haven't had a chance to post on a regular basis for most of 2010, here is a compressed version of all that's happened in my RL:

Scraped around, penny-pinched and generally tried to make do with as little money as possible for the first few months, then started to prepare for our move to Maryland, which mostly consisted of getting our house ready to be put on the market. Hubby's job transfer had to be completed by the beginning of August, so we put the house up for sale in April. Had lots of people trampling through the place, some of them more than once, but no offers. That went on for weeks, and we were getting really worried, because if we couldn't sell the house, we couldn't move. But finally, after lots of marketing and repeated price reductions, finally got an offer in July! Took it, sold the house at a loss, but could finally move on (and out of Jersey!!!)
Found a great place in Maryland, 20 minutes away from Hubby's new job, and in a really nice neighborhood. The house is twice as big as the old place, has a finished basement (hubby's mancave), and a fireplace!! For the first time since I moved to America, I finally have a fireplace :)
So life's been good for all of us since we moved to MD! Money is still tight, and I'm still a stay-at-home mom taking care of our 3 kids, and sometimes I'm getting a real case of cabin fever (even in a place as nice as this one), but allover I really have no reason to complain. In a time where things have gone from bad to worse for lots of people, we have actually *improved* our lives!

On the writing front, though, it's been a very depressing and completely unproductive year.
* number of fics written and published: 0
* number of fics betaed: 0
* number of fics read and reviewed: <10
* number of WIP's currently collecting dust on my hard drive: 3
* number of WIP's currently working on: 0

In other words, I think my writing phase is over. And if it's not, it's a damn long hiatus :(

I've told myself so many times over the past year "tonight, after the kids are in bed, I'm going to sit down and put some work into at least one of those fics, I still have ideas for them, I can at least write a few sentences!"
And then I either fall asleep or get distracted by other stuff *mostly cleaning up after said kids, and watching "Glee"*

Oh well, I'm still holding on to hope, though. I just gotta get some self-discipline and follow through with my resolutions. Maybe I will manage to publish 1 story this year, we'll see.

Anyway, I wish everyone a happy and healthy New Year, and big hugs to all of you who still remember me ;)

Rough day

It's 3.41pm and I have a quiet moment for the first time today. I hardly got anything done today because the baby (who is walking now and constantly clings to my leg every time I stand somewhere) and my 3-year old have been screaming at each other on and off all day. Everyone is in a pissy mood, it seems, the weather is sucky, so I can't even take them out somewhere, and I have no peace to even make a phone call. I love my kids, but today is one of those days that I really wish I had a day care to drop them both off for a few hours.
Right now the baby is finally taking a nap and Daniel is in his room playing, and I am sitting here, looking at all the chores that need to be done and all I want to do is just close my eyes and take a nap. But of course I can't do that, since there is still one kid running around the house.
Once our move to Maryland is completed and we've settled into our new house (once we found it), I am signing both of them up for part-time day care. Daniel needs the interaction with kids his age, and with Angelina in day care for 2 hours maybe twice a week I could maybe finally get some time to myself again.
Much-needed solitude!
chill baby

The life and days of......me

I haven't updated in forever, because I don't seem to even have the time to READ any posting anymore these days. Both my 3-year old and my 8-month old have acquired an acute aversion to seeing me even reach for my laptop. Consequently, I barely manage to shoot off brief e-mails to family and friends, and I didn't get to send any Easter cards this year.

Speaking of.............Happy Belated Easter, Everyone! :)

Otherwise, everyday life is just that - everyday life. Home with the kids all day, money perpetually short with just hubby's income, but at least he has a job that he likes and which is fairly secure.
Speaking of job, though: Hubby has been offered a transfer to a better position in Maryland which he'll have to start by the beginning of August. So now we're looking at moving again after having been in New Jersey for only two years.
I don't mind that much, though, since during the past two years we've learned - the hard way - that New Jersey is a very expensive and uncaring state to live in. It's next to impossible to maintain a home on one income with taxes and every other expense constantly going up. We've had to stretch our budget and come up with measures to stretch our few dollars like we've never had to before. And to constantly having to penny-pinch and still see your credit card bill go up every month is really frustrating!
Things can only get better in Maryland financially. And other than a good German friend, I won't be missing anything from New Jersey. The school system sucks, my 9-year old hates going to school here, and from what I've read about the school system in Maryland, it's sooo much better.
The only serious problem we're facing right now is selling our house here. The market is still very much in the slumps over here and we're not even looking at making a profit out of it, but just breaking even so we can get the hell out of this state is looking to be very difficult.
So now we're working hard on making the house presentable, painting, tidying up, decluttering, etc, so that it'll be ready to be put on the market by the end of this month. Hopefully that'll give us enough time to find a buyer until July or so, when we'll have to go house-hunting in Maryland.

So yes, in a way it sucks having to uproot the family yet again, and moving further away from grandma's, uncles, aunts and cousins, but it's not that far away, about 3 hours drive from grandma's house, so still doable on a long weekend or holidays.

And life can only get better in Maryland! I wholeheartedly believe that!

Of babies and real life

I haven't posted in an eternity, for the simple fact that life hasn't given me the time since our latest (and last) family addition popped into the world. Angelina Ellen was born on August 9th and I'll let you judge the cuteness for yourselves *g*.
At birth:

And at 5 weeks:

She's a joy, but between her and my 2-year old and 9-year old sons, housework and frequently interrupted sleep at night, I sometimes wonder how I find the energy to take a shower and wash my hair...(anyone who's ever gone grocery shopping with an infant, a rambunctious toddler and a 4th grader who hates going to stores knows what I'm talking about).

So it's probably not a surprise that I haven't been on LJ in quite some time, have in fact barely had the time to get on the net at all save a quick e-mail check. People who wrote me 2 weeks ago are still waiting for responses....

Well, at least my sister was here for the first 3 weeks of Baby "Lina's" life, and I'm so glad she was. She was such a big help to me the entire time, and it's also made us grow closer as sisters. Now I'm trying to figure out how and when to take the whole brood to Germany to show around to the family, since neither my mom nor my dad have met their new grandchild in person yet.

So to everyone on my f-list: I'm not ignoring anyone or being indifferent to your posts, I just haven't read any of them lately. (Even now I'm typing with a squirmy baby slung across my lap. Takes some practice, but I'm getting the hang of it....)

Oh, and last but not least: A heartfelt HAPPY BIRTHDAY to Cmar!!!!!!!!!!!!! It *is* your birthday tomorrow, isn't it? Big hugs to you, my friend! Hope you're doing well!!

I gots Torchwood epis!!!

Ah, hubby is the best! I started watching Torchwood a few weeks ago and get the DVD's through Netflix. He must've noticed me always impatiently waiting for the next DVD in the set, and yesterday he presented me with a USB stick with the complete seasons 1 and 2 on it! I don't know where he downloaded them from, but I was soooo happy - since I've so far only made it to the first two epis of season 2. Netflix is a great service, but it's still a slow process to watch an entire season of something that way. So now I don't have to wait anymore! I'm foreseeing an early night for the kids and a marathon of TW for me tonight *G*

Now all I need is Children of the Earth. Too bad I don't get BBC or BBC America. I've seen loads of blogging about it on LJ these past few days, and they sound like slamming episodes so far!
Oh well, eventually.....

That reminds me: How do you like it so far, Germankitty?