Sometimes I'm so dense, I frustrate myself. Like, it takes nearly coming to tears during ballet class (because there's one movement I can't do properly and I make it look awful) to consciously realise how much I love ballet, and how much I really want to do well. But then, five minutes later, I felt that I had nearly nailed an enchaînement I've had trouble with for months, and I was smiling to myself and wanting to pat myself on the back. I know I wasn't doing it perfectly (my arms especially were all over the place), but I was on the proper beat, and I was more up in the air than down, my feet skimming the floor as they were supposed to. That's what I love about ballet: when I'm doing it right, I feel light and weightless and graceful.

At the end of class, there was a little surprise party for a girl who's leaving to study contemporary dance in Germany for two years. Cakes and wine were brought out, and since there were no plates or napkins, everyone was given a fork and told to dig in. It was fun! I ended up chatting with one of the girls who works at the studio, who was very sweet, but after a two-hour class, with nothing but half a glass of wine and a few bites of cake in my stomach, my Japanese wasn't all that impressive. Still, I gambatta, so yay me? XD;

Ugh, cockroach! :P At least Tabitha proved she serves as a warning system? XD Must buy more poison tomorrow. Bleurk.

Anyway, I bought a 4 class ticket for ballet instead of my usual 8 class, both because I don't think I have the time or the energy to make it to eight classes before I leave for China, and also because Sarah came up with this crazy idea to go to Bali, and I'm afraid I'm going to cave and go along... even if it means having no money to spend.

I've been thinking a lot about money recently, and trying to figure out where my priorities lie. Well -- actually, that's not true. I know where my priorities lie, where they've always lain: I want to travel. Ever since I started working and didn't have to save up money for tuition, I saved money so I could travel. Even now, though I spend pretty freely, I feel guilty for not putting more in my travel fund. As it is, China is going to cost a lot, on top of what I've already paid (plane ticket, insurance, visa, medical stuff). Then there's airfare home for Christmas (but maybe I could get my parents to partly fund that: "Daddy, how much do you want to have me home for Christmas? :D"), and the whole Bali thing... not to mention little things like rent and food. Bah, why doesn't someone give me a pile of money to use as I please?

On the bright side, this desire to be frugal is inspiring me to sew, since I won't be getting my jollies buying stuff. Except for when Hannah and I hit up the summer sales, of course.

Hmm, maybe that can be a sticker sheet reward? Haha, maybe I have too many sticker sheets; it's getting that I have too many things I need to reward myself for. ^__^;;; At least that means I'm accomplishing stuff, I guess!

Anyway, good night, gotta get some of that sleep stuff that is apparently good for you!

Good Night

May. 28th, 2010 11:30 pm
Arg, I need to get to bed soon, as I'm really tired and I have to get up early, but I'm totally into the designing groove now and am busy draping another dress. I want to at least finish cutting tonight so I can assemble it tomorrow!

Jamie's going to help me take pictures of the completed dress, since I totally suck at taking pictures of myself, so you should see it soon. ^_^

Wow, I feel silly for not having sewn in so long. On the other hand, ballet class a pris le bord this week... -__-;;; Though to be honest, that's partly a money issue. I finished my last dance card last time I went, so I need to buy a new one. And without the "I'll have wasted money if I don't go to class" impetus, the fact that I just paid my lease renewal* is making me think I should be saving even more than usual so I have plenty in China.

The "Wheee! I can make my own clothes!" high is triply gratifying because I'm a) using up fabric and notions that were bought a while ago and were just sitting there not being useful; b) I'm not spending any extra money; c) I'm bored of my wardrobe and this way I'm not tempted to go and look in the shops. Because we all know how that ends! ^_^v

* This means that June's rent is twice the usual, and about 2/3 of my paycheque. Ouch. And yeah, I'm good for another two years here. Will write more about that soon, as well as other related stuff.
I don't know if it was the heat or what, but today's laser appointment was the most painful one to date, at least the underarm part. But I womanfully bore the pain, and it only took a couple of minutes. Aside from that, the most uncomfortable part of the experience was when the technician was using a marker to delineate portions on the backs of my legs, because dammit, that tickles! I wonder if they ever doodle silly things on customers.

After that I happened upon a super Uniqlo sale and bought two pairs of shorts for Y990 each! Pink and, because they had no more yellow, purple. Then I met up with Jill and Laura and we sang the newly-available-at-karaoke Shitenho-ho-houji song! 8D It was most excellent.

Afterwards we repaired to Jill's, where there was Kraft Dinner, tenipuri, some bitching, and a whole lotta stitching. Laura got down and dirty with t-shirt surgeries and started her initiation into Jill's unholy [cross-stitch] club; Jill stitched kitties; and I knit a(nother) pair of booties for E's baby, but oh, at what cost? My wrist is really sore... :P

So we were discussing "Which character on ___ team would you date?" We started with Seigaku, of course, but before could I even open my mouth, Jill said, "No, Adele, Golden Pair is not a valid answer!"

;_____; But I want them for each other, not for myself! :DDD

Oh fine, I wouldn't say no to an Oishi of my very own... with different hair. (Or even better, girl!Oishi, because she'd be really pretty... <3)

We kind of fizzled out at Rikkai, because honestly, who would want to date any of them? XD

Bloh, I just remembered that I'd told myself I'd start my translations tonight, but I'm too tired. I'll do that tomorrow morning before heading out for the day, then go over it again in the evening. The project is almost over (I've already done 5 stories and several in-game text files, and there are 2 more stories due Monday, then 3 due Wednesday, for a grand total of about 10,000 words, so yay, money!*), and it's been a fun one, if not as cool as being able to tell M-P, "I worked on some of the French for a Castlevania game! :D".

* I have no idea how this works back home, but it seems that freelance work here is always paid 3 months after you send in the invoice. It was like that when I did the educational video, and it's the same with this translation gig. I sent my first invoice in April, so I should have my first paycheque by the end of this month. That means that I won't see the money for this project until October, but after all the travelling I'll be doing in the next two months, I'm sure my bank account will be happy with a little extra padding at that time. ^_^
Tomorrow is White Day, and you all know what that means, right? I will be officially divorced! o(^O^)o Not that I haven't considered myself as such for over two years -- and I just remembered that I failed to observe the two-year anniversary of my moving out on my own.

You know what's dangerous? Having an hour to kill in Shinjuku. Because I ended up at Odakyu and found that beyond the super-fancy and crazy-expensive perfume and make-up counters, there's a little "cheap" section, where you can get eyeshadow for under Y2000 a cake! *gasp* And it turned out I was in a mood for nail polish yesterday, even though the last time I did anything more to my nails than cutting or filing them was ages ago. Plus, there was this shade, in an adorable little bottle, called "Techno bar à Tokyo", so how could I not? It's sparkly black and I'm wearing it now. I also bought a couple of books that will hopefully level up my nihongo. I resisted buying the latest issue of JILLE, though I'm sure I'll cave in within a couple of days, because how can I resist Imajuku Asami's adorable face?

Later on, feeling proud of myself for not having given in to laziness and having opted to walk home from Mitakadai instead of taking the bus from Kichijouji, I remembered I'd left my bike... at Kichijouji station. *headdesk* So it took me an extra half hour to get home, because I wasn't about to pay the train fare to go two stations down the line!

In other news, I felt that after the uplifting, fascinating, inspiring, draining, bemusing experience that was reading Vellum and Ink, the only thing to do was to do back and revisit an old, well-loved friend. Yes, THAT book. The perfect fix when you've just finished something incredible and want something you know you'll love, something you know will make you smile and tear up a bit and will have you choking back laughter on the train because dammit, that description of a first-rate lurker gets you every time*. Because nothing brings down my "I've just read a great book!" high quicker than reading a lousy book right after, and I didn't want to take any chances!

Got my coworker to take a shot of me with the kiddies yesterday, and I was pleasantly surprised, when I looked at the picture afterwards, to see that in direct sunlight, I'm still truly blonde. Also amusing is how tiny the kids look beside my giant (sure, yuck it up, but I'm by no means small in this country!) self.

Speaking of my giant self, the Miracle of the Jeans failed to repeat itself when I tried on some shorts recently, though I supposed I shouldn't be too bitter about it. After all, a while ago it was the XL shorts I could barely get over my hips; now it's the L shorts that I can with great difficulty zip up and then be unable to move around in at all. And it's another excuse to not spend money! :D

My new budgeting plan is going quite well, in spite of having two major "extra" expenses over the past couple of weeks (sunglasses and getting hair lasered off my legs). It's simpler to withdraw all the money for the week at once, and I've settled on Monday as the start of the week. Hopefully, I'll be able to add a bit to my savings, especially since until the end of April the cash flow will be somewhat thinner between ending my second job, my first full-time paycheque coming at the end of April and one of my private students taking a break until May.

Now, time to take all the bobby pins out of my hair (my styling experiments continue...!) and get to bed.

* Good Omens, for those who don't count THAT book among their "would take it to a deserted island if I were only allowed five titles" list.
Over the past couple of days, I've finally come to a decision as to how I will control my spending. Not that it's really out of hand, but I'm not saving as much as I'd like. Therefore, my plan:

- Rent and bills all need to be paid at the end of the month, so I withdraw what's needed and pay all at once*.
- I've given myself a weekly allowance, to be withdrawn at the beginning of the week; all expenses, groceries, outings, etc. must be paid for using this money**. Now all that's left to decide is whether the beginning of the week is Saturday or Monday. XD
- At the end of each week, what (if anything) is left over goes into my piggy bank (must get piggy bank!) and will be money to splurge on something nice. Like, I don't know, maybe a plane ticket back home this summer so I can be Anna's bridesmaid!
- Am still debating whether the money from my private lessons should go directly into the "something nice" fund... Maybe 50-50?

That said, I bought some clothes today, because I was in Ikebukuro in a part of Sunshine City I'd never been to before, and OMG CLOTHES EVERYWHERE! And I apparently cannot resist cute Japanese salesgirls being all cute and chatty and complimenting my outfit. XDDD Still, all the sweetness in the world didn't change the fact that the Really Cool Jacket was too tight across the shoulders, which is one of my two Major Issues*** when it comes to buying clothes here. Because I have abnormally broad shoulders by Japanese clothing standards, it seems. @_@ No matter, the Even Cooler Jacket turned out to be on sale and it fits me fine, as long as I don't wear anything too bulky underneath.

* It's annoying, but my water/sewage bill is always due on the 23rd of the month, so I have to pay that one before the others, which are all due between the last day of the month and the 6th of the next.
** I'll make an exception for charging my Suica, and withdraw money for that as needed.
*** The other one being my bum and hips, of course.



February 2012

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