A Valentine’s Day Monster Hunter Recap


On Friday the 13th, my husband and I set off on a quest. It had started that morning when I woke up to find my husband eagerly peering down at me from the edge of the bed.

“Do you know what today is?” He excitedly asked.

I slowly blinked my eyes. The night before we had gone to bed discussing all of the things we needed to accomplish, most prominently important was finishing the cleaning of the carpets that I had started the day before so we could get our house back together. In a too much information shared, both dogs had had two weeks of diarrhea, thankfully not at the same time, but it had made the purchase of a carpet cleaner necessary. I had spot cleaned, but I wanted to know that they were cleaner than before the last two weeks. Now that it looked like we might finally be done with the sickness, I wanted to go over the carpets thoroughly. I had finished one room, but all of my fingers had gone numb from the force with which I had gotten down on my knees and scrubbed, as only the best of us OCDs can do.

“Um, the day we’re going to finish the carpets. You are going to help me right?”

“No and yes.”

“Is it the day before Valentine’s Day?”

“Yes, but that’s not it.”

I was unsure what he expected me to say. Then I remembered the episode of “The Middle ” we had watched a few days prior. “Oh! Is it World Radio Day?”

He looked at me in exasperation. “It’s Monster Hunter Day!”

I sat straight up in bed. “Why didn’t you wake me up sooner? What’s the plan?”

It turned out that his plan was vague. This would not do. I quickly surmised that we would both need a new DS to play the new Monster Hunter games (a little bit of my love shown here) to the utmost of their awesomeness. They were being released that day after years of us waiting for them. Yes, I’m thirty seven. Yes, I love video games. Let me tell you one day of the year my younger sister got a Sega System for Christmas and I got boardgames. #notoverit. To be fair, my sister still loves video games, too. I think it plays to our love of fantasy. If you think you don’t like video games, but you read fantasy books, you might want to try them again. They have some games geared for folks just like us.

So, for the next hour I procured two new DS systems, and four video games (our kids play with us) at three different stores in three different cities. It was surprisingly hard. I had no idea the systems would be a hot commodity. We were lucky to get two, because I checked ten minutes later and all of the systems were sold out in Southern California.

My husband was thrilled.

Not about my awesome online shopping skills. I knew they would come in handy one day.

He was thrilled to be going to all of the different places to pick up the bounty we scored.

“It’s a scavenger hunt!”

I once made his day by requesting we hit five different grocery stores looking for frozen manicotti. He is easy to please.

We left at noon. We drove to the first stop and picked up three of the video games. On the way, I asked if we could stop at two different Costcos in the other cities because I had wanted to check out the different items they might have from our own. In truth, I was looking for more frozen manicotti. I have a problem. My husband was even more excited. Two scavenger hunts in one day?! I never needed to buy him a present again.

Two hours later, we arrived at our second stop. We picked up the last video game and our first system. From there we hit up our first Costco. We did not find any frozen manicotti. We did, however, find my children’s most favorite thing. A whole variety box of snack sized flamin’ chips. We also got some cream brûlée in little jars even though it is best made at home.

Another hour later we picked up our last system. We were high with the rush of collecting our prizes.

The last Costco was a bust, but we picked up some pizzas to have for dinner. By the time we got home, it was 6:30. We stayed up with the kids playing Monster Hunter in our bed until 1:00 in the morning. We set up our bed like those creepy grandparents in “Charlie and the Chocolate Factory.” I ended up staying up until 3:00 trying to finish some quests.

So, the next morning when my husband woke me up, I had a new plan.

“Honey, I don’t really want to go out for dinner tonight. Would you mind if we just ordered Chinese food and stayed home to play “Monster Hunter?”

His silence scared me. I felt like I had disappointed him. He had been talking about taking me out for Valentine’s Day all week. Then his face broke out into a wide grin. “You are the best wife ever!” He proclaimed.


And that is why my house still looks like this.

And that is why I got no sleep.

And that is why yesterday was the best Valentine’s Day ever.

What did you do for Valentine’s Day? Did you dress up? Did you wear red or pink? I was going to wear the perfect pink and red outfit. It was a repeat of the outfit I wore on Christmas Eve. But instead I stayed in pajamas. And not the kind of pajamas one is supposed to wear on a romantic holiday. It didn’t matter. I killed a Great Jaggi and made a weapon with its hide. My husband declared it to be beautiful. Just kidding. He totally made it for me. He’s chivalrous that way. It was so romantic.

Monarch Magic Metamorphosis


First, I know this pattern resembles a Tiger Butterfly more than a Monarch. I must have been a little loopy when I first typed this up, because here I am now editing it before it goes up in a few hours and I am wondering what I was thinking with the title. Who can really say?


I have found in the last year that a swing style dress is my favorite.


The Sarita Swing Dress is beautiful. I do wish it was one inch longer but otherwise it is perfect. It is made from silk which is a rare thing to find nowadays. My grandma used to keep silk worms in her house so we could watch how they worked. She also would occasionally raise a butterfly through the stages. Green and yellow were her favorite colors. She would have loved this dress.


I paired the dress with my Simply Livly Turquoise Necklace and a wooden turquoise ring. I also wore my favorite Chie Mihara booties with it. They were one of my favorite sale scores last year. Her shoes are amazing.

I think that every girl dreams of a fantasy world. It is kind of what is thrown on us as children. Castles, princesses, animals, pink and flowers. Butterflies fall right into this.


Now, I do not know for certain that this dress is based on a butterfly. It seems obvious to me that it is. But I also frequently mix up the words, “prescription and subscription” so I am absolutely no good mental evaluator.


I looked up the name of the dress, “Sarita.” It means “flowing” in Sanskrit according to the website, behind the name. It is subtle. But, oh, the missed name opportunities this dress had.


It has the most lovely crochet lace edged lining. The dress is short, but in all of my pictures (including spinning), I did not encounter one wardrobe snafu.


It is perfect for a windy day. The sleeves flutter magnificently. I honestly felt like a butterfly in this dress. Groan. I can imagine someone quoting that and I realize how lame that sounds, but it is true.


This dress might not have the right name, but it does not matter.


It simply made me happy. When I wore it I smiled. It felt like a metamorphosis was taking place. And that is all that matters to me.

NOW CLOSED 23rd Blog Giveaway: $25 Urban Outfitters e-Gift Card

This giveaway is now closed. Thank you to all who entered!

I love February. It is a quick month. A month of possibilities. In California you never know what February will look like. It is quite typically cold, but this month has been uncharacteristically warm. I feel for everyone dealing with the cold weather. If it is any consolation, so many of us Californians are getting sick because of the fluctuations in the weather. My daughter is home sick today.


For this month’s giveaway I am giving away a $25 e-gift card to Urban Outfitters. I have been pleasantly surprised by their fun and affordable options this last month. No, the jumpsuit I mentioned in this post that I ordered did not work out, but it resulted in a funny moment with my husband. I like their cheap shoes that are 2 for $20. I had some changes happen in January that led me to explore myself a little more. I am trying a few new things this month. And I am letting go of others. More on this later.

To enter this giveaway for a chance to win a $25 e-gift card, please answer the following question:

What has been the best thing to happen to you so far in this new year? This year has been hard so far but I am trying to look at the positives. Mine would be last Friday night when my family stayed in and watched a movie after going to Slater’s 50/50. It was the most perfect evening. One of those memories that will stay with me forever even though it was so simple. It was just loving and nice.

To enter a second time, please become a registered reader of this blog. There are many ways to do so on the right hand side of this page. Please leave a second comment if you are a subscribed reader. I count the comments at the end and then I enter everyone’s name into random.org to pick a winner. So, to be fair, it has to be a separate comment.

Limit two entries per person in the forms specified. Must be eighteen years old to enter.

The giveaway runs from February 10, 2015 12:00 a.m. PST to February 16, 2015 9:00 p.m. PST. I will be choosing one winner from the comments entered on this post for the gift card using random.org. I will contact the winner on February 17, 2015 and display the winner’s name on this blog on February 18, 2015.

Thank you to all who enter and for your positivity. I very much appreciate it.

By commenting on this post, you are entering this giveaway for a chance to win one $25 e-gift card to Urban Outfitters and agreeing to the rules outlined in this giveaway.

I will attempt to contact the winner three times with the email address provided. If I have not heard from the winner within fourteen days from the first attempt at contact, the prize will be forfeit and a new winner will be drawn.

Past winners are welcome to enter.

* Negative comments (chosen at the discretion of the owner of this blog) will be deleted and that entry will be forfeit.

*this giveaway and post is not sponsored by or affiliated with Urban Outfitters.



I was thinking the other night of stories. As I often do. Alone in the dark. Mind racing.

The night was dominated by Silence. It became a casual audience to the rustling of my inner thoughts.

And I remembered a story my mother once told me of helping an old lady with her groceries. But the thing with stories, is there is often more than one variation of the same happenstance. I happened to be there for this story. In my version, seen from the eyes of a child, I remember my mother hopping out of the car. This was after one our trips to get my sister her bee shots. I am sure we still had the remains of chocolate croissants on our breath.

I vaguely remember there being an elderly lady. And something happened that had my mother and grandmother crying with laughter all of the way home. I believe my mother was helping the older woman with her groceries. The lady did not want help. My mother insisted. When she went to give the woman back her groceries, she handed them to her unevenly weighted. The poor old lady fell over. I am sure she appreciated the help. As a child, I just remember it being scary. My mother jumping out of the car. The unfamiliar neighborhoods. The energy of the city. A living breathing terrifying thing to a country girl.

As I lay awake, I thought, I will just have to ask my grandmother her side of the story. I had heard it before. But I loved to hear her tell it, because it always invoked big gales of laughter.

And then I remembered that I could not ask my grandma. The time for questions has passed. The big weight of the words “never again” settled down into my chest at the same moment my heart realized what was happening and bellowed out the word, “OH.” But it felt like “OHHHHHHHHHHH.”

When your heart speaks, you must listen. It is usually the mute organ in all of your orchestra of feelings. Which is funny if you stop to think about it, because it is the only organ we ever really hear. The constant, “bumping” a distant reminder of its baritone of melody.

It rarely speaks. It aches. It twinges. It might fall or drop. It might even break. But speaking is rare. It is not the most articulate of body parts. Usually just making one syllable words. Its favorites being, “Why?” “No.” “Yes.” “Stay.” “Go.” “Please.” But tonight it simply said, “Oh!” It was surprised. And then it wasn’t. All the words I was feeling wrapped up into those two letters.

My body quivered with the weight of the words in the dark. The echo of my heart’s last cry still vibrating through my body. Through my soul. My heart began to “bump” once more. But it was with a sadness. A funeral drum.

“Oh.” My soul simply said. “Oh.”

My tears answered their chorus as they ran down my cheeks and hit my pillow. Pit. Pat. Pit. Pat. They performed a solo symphony of their own.

Silence bowed and stayed heavily by my side through the stillness of the night. Only moving to rustle the covers. Or hum with the fan in the evening air.

My broken choir lay in a wet weeping mess.

Each instrument felt broken. Ruined. The strings severed. The keys twisted. This particular song would never be played again. At least in the chord of memory that had shattered my being that night.

Yet Silence still quietly applauded. For its favorite tune is sadness. It is when Itself can actually be heard.

Only the broken hearted can hear it.

And learn to call its name.



* This was written in response to The Daily Posts Weekly Writing Prompt, “The Sound of Silence.”