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What is Deborah Geeking Over This Week Vol 7

All these rocked my world this week:

When I saw this trailer in the theaters, I didn’t understand it or have a desire to see it as I had never seen the originals. But then I got free tickets to a preview showing and thought what the heck. I brought my friend who was a HUGE fan of the originals. And guess what? We both really enjoyed it! It’s a lot of fun and adrenaline and honestly one of the softest R movies I’ve ever been to and the female characters are FANTASTIC. Go see it!

I’ve listened to this song for a few years but recently it’s been on non stop repeat. Like I’ll go to bed with this playing in the background. I’ve even gone so far and written a story based on how this song makes me feel. Never to be read by other eyes but it’s had that much influence.

I’ve been trying to eat more healthy these days (and it seems to be working somewhat!) and this means I’ve been eating more salads for my lunch. Yesterday I went to Chick-fil-a and go this, the market grill salad. I used only a bit of the berry vinaigrette dressing and didn’t add the granola or nuts (saved them for snacks) and it was extremely filling for the low amount of calories! I am learning however that eating healthier means paying more. Sigh.

I got a hair cut (which no one seems to have noticed but when you have long hair, 4 inches isn’t that much) and I needed to do something with it so I got this. Yes I realize it says blonde on the bottle but I’ve actually used a lot John Frieda blonde stuff in the past and liked it. This one is good for texturizer plus it has a nice scent and it makes me feel like my hair has just gone to the beach.

I have a thing for Chris Pratt right now. He’s just fantastic in everything. And yes I enjoyed him BEFORE he got all buff in Guardians because he was excellent in Parks and Rec and all his earlier stuff too. But, look at him in a suit! And he’s a great dad too! If I were to make a movie about my life, I would cast Chris Pratt in it. There may be a celeb fangirling post soon…..

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Love Is a Many-Splendored Thing

I’m in my early 30s and I’ve been in love exactly three times in my life. Each time was a different stage in my life. I may not have handled some of them the way I would do now but each time falling in and out of love was a learning experience. Each time and person helped shaped me to be the person that I was today (for better or worse) and though I would possibly change some things, I have to also accept this is what was meant to be.

Now I know there’s some of you out there who have never fallen in love before. There are others of you all there who fall in and out of love so many times that you can’t keep track of the all. And yet there’s still others of you out there who are married to the only person you’ve ever fallen in love with.

Kudos for all of you who are in whatever situation you happen to be in.

I never really understood how growing up I was supposed to avoid having affections for other people. I know that there’s a big movement in the church of emotional purity where you don’t give your heart away and experience heartache. Parents don’t want their child to focus on things like this at such a young age because they aren’t ready for it. We must avoid anything that could compromise their hearts! Well, honestly unless you completely isolate someone with no human interaction, it’s near impossible to do this.

The thing with falling in love is that even if you only fall in love once, you’re going to get hurt. It is inevitable. Because no matter what happens, that other person is going to break your heart at some point. Sure, you can make up and all will be well. But the hurt that comes from having your heart broken is worse than any other pain in the world.

Loving someone is a risk and sometimes it doesn’t pay off. Sometimes you fall out of love with each other. Sometimes the other person doesn’t return your love. You may disagree but I don’t think you can control who your heart initially wants to be with it. You can choose your actions on how you choose to proceed afterwards and sometimes you shouldn’t always follow your heart. But sometimes you can’t choose who you fall in love with. But you can be careful on who you give it away to. Love and care but don’t give your heart away to someone who doesn’t deserve it.

Is it better to love and lost than to never have loved at all? Or would “I rather hurt than feel nothing at all?”

With falling in love three times and getting hurt three times, it’s safe to say that my heart is not brand new. It does have some cracks in it. It has been broken a few times and needed repair and restoration. It’s not factory sealed and never been used. Whoever ends up earning my heart for the long run will hopefully understand this. But experience has made me stronger and wiser person. It’s taught me that I shouldn’t just give my heart away to anyone. And that God is the only one that can fully fill and heal my heart.

The Lord is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit. (Psalm 34:18)

He heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds. (Psalm 147:3)

Until the time comes, my prayer is that He keeps my heart slow.

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Now you see me, now you don’t

The one thing about living near a big city is that the odds of you running into someone you know when you’re out is surprisingly slim. It’s a weird because despite the fact that I know a lot of people in the area, because the population is so big and everything is so spread out, it’s very rare to actually spot someone you know. To be honest, when you DO run into someone it’s always in the weirdest place and not in the grocery store or somewhere you frequent often and you want to be like, are you stalking me?

Of course what always inevitably happens is that you’ll run into someone when you’re not expecting them and you’ll look your worst. Most of the time we’ll just be out grabbing something quick, no makeup, not doing your hair, wearing grubby clothes and then BOOM you’ll turn the aisle and there’s someone you actually know. Because the moment you prepare for something and make yourself look even halfway presentable, you’ll never see anyone that you actually want to see. It’s like an automatic signal.

The worst though, is when you run into someone and you recognize them. But they don’t see to recognize you. Do you proceed to still go up to them and say hi and potentially make everything weird as they scramble to place who you are? Do you just pretend to not know them yourself? Do you wait to see if they will remember? Do you just turn the corner and run far away from the situation? It’s like a Choose Your Own Adventure book. “Oh fancy running into you here!”

I guess it all depends on what YOU want to do. If the other person doesn’t want to talk to you, then it can be short and everyone will be on their way. And then sometimes it’s good to catch up with someone you haven’t seen in forever. Granted this all depends that you’re not running into each other in some place you’d rather not anyone recognize you at.

 

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What Good Books Have You Been Reading Lately Vol. 10

To newcomers of this blog, this is a semi-regular feature on my blog. I have no set date on when these posts will go up. It all depends on how much I read and how good the books are that I read. Lately, I have been picking good books so it’s been good reading times for me. My spreadsheet is getting a workout!

The Lost Crown by Sarah Miller (Atheneum, 2011)

My blurb: So confession, despite the fact that my degrees are focused on American history and my personal interest is in British history, I am also very interested in Russian history. Specifically that of the last czar Nicholas II and his family. This is a book told from the different perspectives of his four daughters and it’s so incredibly sad because they were all so very young when they were killed.

Popular by Maya Van Wagenen (Dutton Books for Young Readers, 2014)

My blurb: I was drawn to this book because of the cover and I never would have expected it to be written by a 15 year old because it’s so very well done. It’s non fiction first of all and Maya writes about her experiences going from not noticed at all in school to becoming one of the friendliest and popular girls in school simply by following rules from a 1950s teen self help book. Each chapter is based on a chapter in that 50s book from skin care to posture to clothing. It’s a great read for any age.

Under a Painted Sky by Stacey Lee (G.P. Putnam’s Sons Books for Young Readers, 2015)

My blog: First off my attempts at reading POC authors this year has gone horrible. I’m not really sure if I’m unconsciously choosing white authors or if that’s just what is really dominating the shelves but this book was only the 4th by a POC author for me this year. That being so it’s absolutely fantastic. A historical YA about two POC characters (an Asian girl and an African-American girl) out in the wild west? Yes please.

Ready Player One by Ernest Cline (Random House, 2011)

My blurb: I talked a bit about this already on the blog but I had a BLAST reading this book. My “book club” decided to read it and I’m really glad because it’s been recommended me for a while and I kept putting it aside. Basically if you grew up in the 80s and know a lot about pop culture this is the book for you. It was so fun reading it too! Granted some of it seems a bit like name dropping at times and how many references can the author cram in a passage. But overall it’s really fun and I’m looking forward to the movie directed by Spielberg in a few years.

Mist of Midnight by Sandra Byrd (Howard Books, 2015)

My blurb: Here’s a good gothic mystery where I refused to flip to the end to figure out everything. Do you know how hard that was for me? Which served me well because I honestly had no idea how everything was going to work itself out and was pleasantly pleased with how it all did. Byrd’s books are always enjoying to read and this one is no exception.

Recipe for Disaster by Stacey Ballis (Berkely, 2015)

My blurb: I love books about food. Seriously, there is nothing better than eating food and reading a story about food at the same time. And Stacey Ballis’ books always have so much of it in there PLUS a good story to boot. This one even throws in some HGTV home remodeling as well. I learned how to make good roasted chicken thanks to this book. And there are recipes. It’s a winner.

That’s what I’ve been reading. What good books have YOU been reading lately?

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Shattering an Image Doesn’t Always Mean Bad Luck

The other night there was a women’s event at my church. Now I think I’ve talked about this on here before but I get excited when there’s an event at church that is for ALL the women and not just for moms. I’m thrilled that there’s so many programs for moms and hopefully one day I’ll be able to do that but as I’m not in that stage of life, I tend to feel very left out. So anytime I hear about an event for all women, I will jump at the chance to attend.

This specific event featured a speaker that talked about shattered images and what it really means to be a godly woman. It was awesome how much I got out of her talk. It just really felt like I could relate to what she was saying despite not being in the same stage of life. I didn’t feel like I was being left behind or outside the circle. Maybe it was because this was what I needed to hear but everything in the talk just clicked with me.

In keeping with last week’s post about social media, I realize that I’ve created an image of what I SHOULD be like based on what I see my friends and others are doing in their own lives. For me it’s actually not the media or celebrities that influence me because I know that I will never come close to achieving their lifestyle and I’m perfectly ok with it. There are though some bloggers that do make me feel woefully inadequate because in their posts they look like they have perfect everything from hair to food to photography to the damn blog itself and how professional it looks. That can be extremely intimidating but then I remind myself again that bloggers are trying to reach their audience (and also the possibility of making money) and therefore they are only going to showcase their best lest they lose both.

But yet for some reason, that same line of reasoning doesn’t seem to compute as easily in my head with people I know. I see what they post online and even though with some people I know fully well what is going on in their lives, they still come across as perfect to me. They may have the worst lives ever but I will never know this because all they project is an image of bliss and happiness.

I see all these women and it’s so hard to NOT compare myself to them. When I do this, I mean it’s no wonder that the life I want to have seems like it’ll never happen. Because they seem to be everything that I can never be no matter how hard I try. Moment of truth: there are days when it’s incredibly painful to hear your friends talk about their children and how they are expecting more, how much they love their marriage or hearing of an engagement, buying a house or just being excited to have a place to decorate, not having to worry about money and can take trips whenever they want, or even just have someone take care of them when they are sick and not have to worry about dying alone and no one noticing.

The absolute worst (and I really should not be doing this, why I torture myself is beyond me) is when I see pictures and posts from the wives of any of my exes or guys that it didn’t work out with. Because all I see is just constant visual reminders of me not being what they wanted and makes me feel like I’m never going to be good enough.

This type of perspective even skews what my image of what a godly woman should look like. Because to me she is someone who is married, has kids, very hospitable, always wanting to serve, patient, full of grace, not outspoken, even IF she has awkward moments she plays it off easily and is incredibly humble. I see other women in church who I know are older than me but with their perfect hair, makeup, and figure look like they are years younger. They have kids but you’d never know it based on how they look. They appear to be perfectly put together. I know there are struggles behind the appearance but let’s be honest, they aren’t going to share them with me and do I really need to know everything? No.

We hold ourselves to a standard that can never be reached and then we hold each other to yet an even higher standard. These are all images that I need to shatter. Because honestly, what really matters (and this was my takeaway from the event) is that IF I am TRULY honest about my faith then I am an image bearer of God. Therefore I really need to stop comparing myself to anyone else. This goes for both people in the church as well as others out of it. If I’m supposed to be representing God, then I’ll do it in my own way and not everyone else’s.

I really don’t want to be like everyone because I’m not like everyone else. And I want people to see how different I am because of my faith. Not that I’m going around preaching at everyone or trying to convert anyone I come in contact with. But instead through how I act and that means with my own way of doing things. Sure it may mean being the quirky one that stands out awkwardly but that’s how God wants me to be. I won’t be the person with the perfect hair everyone envies and I may not (yet) have a husband and children who I can share stories about to others.

But….I am me. Sometimes I wonder if God made a mistake when He made me and that even though I know I was created in God’s own image perhaps He got a bit distracted with me and I came out slightly flawed in comparison with everyone else. Ultimately, I know that it’s not true. It’s funny because all my life I’ve wanted to blend in with everyone else so that I wouldn’t stand out. Now I’m realizing that standing out could be a good thing.

My story is different from others. I’ve been realizing that my spiritual gift is leaning towards encouragement as I tend to do this, many times without even trying, it just happens. So I hope that God will use me and my story to help encourage others throughout whatever walk of life they might be in.

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The 4th will be with you. Always.

Today is Star Wars Day.

For those of you not into geek culture, today is May 4th. May the 4th. May the force…..get it? So if you’re running around today and see stormtroopers or Jedi running around the streets and you’re supremely confused, this is why.

After those of you who don’t care stop shaking your heads, as one of my friends said the other day “It’s a glorious time to be alive!” We have a new Star Wars movie coming out later this year. Sure it’s not directed by Lucas but then again after the prequels (which I still will watch and defend though they aren’t my favorite) maybe that is for the best?

If you’ve been living in a cave and have NOT seen the new teaser trailer yet, here you go:

What does it all mean? Will Han and Chewie live for the entire movie? Will Luke and Leia? Seriously that’s the most important question for myself. I’m excited to learn about all the new characters and see if any of them are related to our beloved original characters but if JJ Abrams kills off all the old ones, we will not be happy people. Especially after they already deemed all the people I loved in the expanded universe as non canon. Sigh.

I’m really glad that this is my kind of thing because I can see how for some people who are not, everyone talking about all this could be extremely boring or not being able to understand the excitement. At some point I’ll do a proper geekness post about my love for this franchise.

Until then…may the 4th be with you!

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Go see Avengers: Age of Ultron

Really, there’s not much to be said today. I saw the movie last night and I can’t talk to a lot of people about it because pretty much everyone else hasn’t seen it yet. So I’m left in a state of shut down because I can’t spoil things.

But I will say BEST MOVIE OF THE SUMMER?! BETTER THAN FIRST AVENGERS? HAWKEYE! (yes I did cheer for him as soon as he appeared on screen)

It’s glorious. And everything about it is why I love the Marvel Cinematic Universe.

This was basically me.

Need to plan the next time I’ll be seeing it again……

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How does one be real and authentic in a #filtered world?

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I was talking with a friend the other day who had deactivated their Facebook account. Initially I had assumed I was blocked because this person had been an avid poster with their account full of witty status updates, Instagram pics of a seemingly perfect life, and basically looking like they were enjoying everything that came their way. The life they shared online looked glorious where they got tons of comments and likes on practically everything. (Meanwhile I’m sitting here cheering when I get ONE person to like something.) So it was a rather big shock to hear that their reason for leaving was because they were tired of seeing other people having lives while they weren’t having one of their own due to constantly having to work all the time. I was like “But YOU looked like YOU were having the life!” I would have never guessed that they were jealous of other people because to me, I was jealous of their life. Like seriously, I found myself feeling like I was never going to be seen as cool enough based on everything they posted and found myself trying to post things on my wall to get THEIR approval. In reality, they were only trying to make the best of what was rather a grueling and tiring life.

It’s funny how with social media we get jealous of people for sharing their perfect lives, annoyed with people for oversharing their not so perfect lives, and then with our own personal lives, we just try to hide everything. We’ll either put up a facade where it looks like we’ve got it all together. This can either be on social media or even in person.

Yet inside we’re hurting and wondering if there’s anyone else out there who feels the same way we do.

How do I know this? Because for years I did this. When I was going through the worst parts of the years leading to my divorce, you would have had no idea based on my Facebook statuses or my Tweets or even if you saw me in person. I was determined to hide it and fake it so that no one would know what was going on. I didn’t want people to start judging me so I just hid everything to the point where it was like I was living a double life. You would have never known how much I was struggling during those years and what was actually going on in my real life.

And yet, sometimes there were cracks. Every now and then a rather emotional status would pop up because I couldn’t hold it in. But because I never hinted or alluded to it at any other time, the random statuses look odd and no one says anything, and it does come off as oversharing. If you’ve been positive so much and then get randomly real, it makes people uncomfortable because they don’t know what to do.

Sometimes though you don’t even need to share anything at all and it’ll still have the same effect. People who don’t post anything online but still don’t talk about it in real life either have extremely private lives or extremely boring lives. It’s not a crack at you. You just either don’t want to share things with everyone or you have nothing to share. Though I will say that if you don’t post things online but you continue to look at everyone else’s, well….you’re basically just being a voyeur aren’t you?

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But this is what I currently struggle with now. How can I be real and authentic without oversharing, being too dramatic or appear overally emotional? How can I ask a Christian show both those who share my faith and those that don’t that life is not always perfect but through it all I am getting through it because of my faith? I feel like other Christians tend to hide behind their faith and we don’t want to share the messy because we’re supposed to have it altogether. If anything, we’re supposed to have 100% trust in God and anytime we show doubt or anger or uncertainty, it looks as if we don’t, therefore it’ll appear as if we don’t have strong enough faith.

If I see someone with wonderful pictures all the time of a seemingly perfect life with their kids, significant others, DIY projects, food, car, house, job, etc. my two initial thoughts are “Why do they have it all together and I don’t?” or “Are they hiding something behind all the perfectness?” The problem is I don’t know what the truth is. Even if I know them pretty well. I’ve seen people put up their struggles on social media, not whining about petty things, but real honest struggles that makes them seem more authentic to me only to have other people blast them for being negative. So these people DO want to see a facade?

Yes, I get that a lot of you come to Facebook to escape your own life. You present the best parts of yourself online. You don’t people to see your messy and while you want to see if others are experiencing struggles, you overall don’t want to swim in theirs either. It’s a convoluted process.

All I know is that I want to try to be real and authentic when portraying myself even though it’s hard and at the same time to NOT get jealous or feel inadequate when seeing everyone else. I highly doubt anyone is jealous of mine. Right now it’s all me basically being excited about the new Avengers movie, defending Hawkeye, and all the books I’m reading. It’s my actual life and I’m not being fake about it. Taking myself offline isn’t going to be the answer for me. I’m sure I’ll figure this out…..

In the meantime, posts like this bring me back down to earth: The Reality Behind Instagram Feeds.

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Getting Mad at Inanimate Objects

Does anyone else have this happen to them?

You know that feeling.

When you stub your toe on a door.

When you’re putting on a shirt and you cannot get it over your head.

When you bump into the corner of a table.

When you open the fridge and a jar of something falls out and explodes.

When you’re walking and you trip over a bit of sidewalk that magically jumps out at you.

It’s extremely frustrating because it always seems as if these objects come alive simply to just to attack you.

Sure you can always blame it on you being clumsy or being at the wrong place at the wrong time. But I swear that certain objects move and have a mind of their own.

Just ask that dish that fell off the shelf when NO ONE WAS AROUND IT.

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I Should Listen to You More Often

I have a bad habit of being recommended things by friends and not immediately following up on them only to find out later, they were right. You see, it’s not that I don’t trust my friends. It’s more to do with TIME. There are so many things that I’m discovering on my own that when a friends lends you a book or movie, you’re like….oh thanks, I’ll get to this later. And sometimes later never happens. But then there are times when you just suck it up, make the time and you actually give in to the recommendation. That’s when you find out…HOLY CRAP. YOU WERE SO RIGHT ABOUT THIS. I SHOULD LISTEN TO YOU ALL THE TIME!

The thing with being public about your interests is that your friends who know you well have pretty much figured out what you like and what you don’t. I have gotten the reputation of liking a lot of geek things that most girls I hang around with refuse to touch or if they do, don’t understand it. That being said, a lot of my guy friends have constantly given me tips on things they liked that they think I would enjoy. This ranges from books to TV shows to tabletop games to video games to food and beer. Sometimes I don’t take the advice because I’m a bit wary of it. And then they prove me wrong.

I’ll give three examples of recommendations from friends.

Friend #1 recommended me to read the book Ready Player One insisting that I would enjoy it very much.

Well, have you seen my TBR pile? Plus I work in a library! There are so many books I’m trying to read already that to add another book that I wasn’t intentionally going to read and that I didn’t discover myself seems a bit daunting. I’m ashamed to say that I accepted the book, kept it for a few weeks (months?) and returned it without reading it. I just didn’t have the time or interest at the moment. I felt like a horrible friend but….so many books so little time? But then several months later, I heard news that Steven Spielberg would be directing the movie. And my “book club” decided to read it. So I finally gave in. And guess what? I loved it. One of the most fun books ever. Seriously it was so awesome I didn’t want to stop reading.

I should have listened to Friend #1. Their next recommendation I should take: to read Jonathan Strange and Mr. Norrell.

Friend #2 told me I needed to watch Pacific Rim.

I was told that I would enjoy this movie a lot and it was not like Transformers meets Battleship at all which is what the trailers made it look to be. They had claimed it to be one of their favorite movies ever and I needed to go see it. I was like….um no? It looks stupid. Plus no one in the cast I’m a fan of and I’ve never seen any of the director’s other movies. *Yawn*. But then I kept getting ragged on so I finally gave in.

This is the post on Facebook I wrote the day after I saw it.

So to everyone who said to me “Deborah, why aren’t you seeing Pacific Rim? It has everything you like in a movie! And you just lost your awesome, geek and Asian cards with your lame excuses!”, I am officially eating a big fat crow right now. Pacific Rim was quite awesome.

Reasons why it was awesome

10) There was an Asian girl with blue hair! And the young version of herself looked like me growing up.
9) Lack of a romance was a major plus. And no forced kissing that comes out of nowhere. WOOT.
8) While the trailers didn’t do anything for me, I bought the storyline. And got quite invested in the actual story.
7) Humor from scientists. Very welcome. The scene where they shake hands (you know the one) brought well written comic relief.
6) Idris Elba is the mother effin man.
5) Awesome special effects and sound. Much better than Man of Steel.
4) Fight scenes were quite good. Again better than Man of Steel. Heck everything about this movie was better than Man of Steel.
3) There’s a dog!
2) Nothing to do with the movie, but the Alamo Drafthouse in Ashburn is effing awesome. BEST place to see a movie. Best popcorn ever. Unless I absolutely have to, I am never seeing going to another movie theater again.

And the top reason for why I liked this movie?

1) When Gipsy is falling from a fight in space, they pull out a sword!!!!!!!!! I literally turned to (Friend #2) with a huge grin of glee on my face. That was the turning point for me. (It’s because I like swords) The rest of the movie, I was on the edge of my seat.

Well done del Toro. Well done. I would like to see more of the story fleshed out. Prequels would be most appreciated.

I now reclaim back all my cards. And if you want to talk about it with me in person or online, I will gladly share in fanboy/fangirl appreciation.

Yep I should have listened to Friend #2. Their next recommendation for me: to read Slaughterhouse Five.

Now Friend #3, I’ve actually been pretty good about taking their recommendations. And I’ve actually talked about some of them on this blog like Lizzie Bennet Diaries or (500) Days of Summer. However the one recommendation I was slowest to take was to watch Doctor Who.

Why would I want to watch a silly show about a guy played by different actors that travels through time and space? It looks dumb. And cheesy. And confusing. There are too many episodes. I can’t get invested in this right now.

Hah. hahahahahaa. Yeah these were all my lame excuses. We all know how much I love the show now. Like freakishly addicted to the show and the universe and everything. I binged watched all the episodes that were on Netflix and Amazon Prime in a few months like WHOA.

Yep, I should have listened to Friend #3 right from the beginning. Their next recommendation: to watch What If.

The moral of this long story is that my friends obviously know my tastes. And I should listen to them more.

Feel smug my friends. Know that you were right.