Archive for the ‘website’ Category

No Spontaneous Combustion Here (I like to plan too much for that).

Friday, April 19th, 2013

(Sorry for any temporary technical issues in accessing the site.  We’ve gone rogue, cut free from the hosting company I’d been using, and hopefully giving us the freedom to fix whatever was making things so ultra slow sometimes (that’s what I get for choosing partly based on who had the most amusing company name, I guess).  As much as it was potentially fitting for my site to have the same kinds of energy issues I do, I’m pretty sure nobody wants to deal with that any more than they absolutely have to.  Anyway, everything should be a-okay now.  Thanks for your patience.  Let me know if there are any lingering issues we’ve missed that need resolving.)

(Besides the emotional kind.  I’m aware of those.  Mostly.)

Dubious claims to fame

Tuesday, March 19th, 2013

Now and then I still collect amusing search terms used to get here, because I find them hilarious, and someday when I’m feeling well enough to put together that type of post I’ll be tickled to be pleasantly drowning in absurd search phrases to choose from.

A term on today’s list caught my eye, and when I went to add it to my stash, I realized it was already there. In fact, this seems to have shown up multiple times.

Now, there have been a few times in the past when I have ended up as one of the top search results for some really weird things. So this is the part where I begin to wonder, and head to Google with a good-natured cringe ready in reserve, but still thinking that I’m probably being silly to even check. Because in the whole of the internet, surely there are other pages out there for people looking for this type of thing. Surely that term popped up on my search hits from one or two very persistent searchers, trolling through the tenth or eleventh page of their Google results. But I pop the phrase into the search bar anyway, just to confirm (and to make any FBI investigations into my search history that much more interesting).

And of course, my first intuition was correct, and I had to shake my head and laugh at myself.

Yup. In all of the internet, in all of the world, the very first page result you’ll get if you’re looking for “fuzzy bondage”? Yep. That’s me. :)

(Even better, the post in question is a really lame, washed out, sort of depressing one from when I was still deep in the throws of medication-induced depression. Somehow I’m thinking that’s not what those searchers were looking for…)

Flummoxed

Thursday, July 19th, 2012

So I happened to glance at my search terms for the day just now.  They display on my dashboard when I log in here.  This is something that clearly used to amuse me, but I haven’t kept up with in a very, very long time (more than a year now, really).  Today’s s set looked like despite the time away, the standard list of usual suspects were still going strong.  Yeah, yeah, animals hugging.  Yadda yadda stick figures having sex.  And then….?!??

That’s right…

I’m pretty sure there are things I could say here, but really, I think that’s art all on its own.

Public Service Announcement

Thursday, May 19th, 2011

I was going to try to write a little something completely unrelated to this, but I just noticed that I have started to get search hits from people looking for things like “patients with extreme sensitivity to SSRI’s or other antidepressants” or “why are some people so much more sensitive to side effects from medications than others”. These are things that I had wondered myself over the last couple of years, and I say to anyone searching for that type of information…

Please, please, please, take a quick look at Chronic Fatigue Syndrome (this site is exceptionally credible, and also fairly comprehensive. Often the short lists of symptoms just don’t cover it for this)!

Unusually strong reactions to medications (particularly those that affect the brain) is EXTREMELY common with CFS. So are paradoxical reactions (for those people who instead got here with “antidepressants make me more depressed”. If you’re sadder while taking antidepressants, you might want to check out CFS too. Same for those of you who typed in “my doctor says I’m depressed but I don’t feel sad”.  I don’t know if I would have believed that was what was wrong with me if I had read that document years ago, but I might at least have had it in mind later when I also started to have random pains, and digestive troubles, and hormone irregularities, and pounding heartbeats sometimes, and, and, and…

If there is a lot of (possibly minor) weird random physical stuff going wrong with you, please investigate this. It may not be what’s wrong with you, but it can’t hurt to be informed for the future just in case. If it does end up sounding right, it can be hard to get a diagnosis (especially before you’ve completely fallen apart), but the earlier you know, the better. If you know you’re a hypochondriac, don’t read it. But if you know in your gut that you aren’t, but sometimes feel like one because of everything you’re experiencing, I would suggest taking a look.

And doctors, if your patients are reacting in bizarre ways to your medications or claim to be more wiped out by side effects than anyone you’ve seen before in your career, please look into whether this might apply to them before you right them of as anxious or imagining things. Early intervention can salvage huge amounts of a person’s quality of life.

Foliage Friday – Big Reveal for Ange’s Tree!

Friday, April 22nd, 2011

So it looks like some of you at least had this one pegged.  :)   Bright and cheerful Ange belongs to…

Bright and cheerful Tree #6!

Tree 6

An urban cow-tree for Ange!

Here is what our resident art therapy expert pinkbrain had to say about this tree, without having any information about who it belonged to:

#6

Happy, happy, joy, joy. Tree #6 you put so many happy things surrounding your tree. According to a freudian analysis (most of our training was freudian or psychodynamic) the sun is a symbol for your father. So my hypothesis, although those freudians have been wrong on occasion, would be that you’re a daddy’s little girl. The sun is sooo big in comparison to the tree, it almost looks like it’s supporting the tree. There’s a lot of repetition in your drawing, the birds, the grass, the rays of the sun, the flowers. I’m guessing you’re an extrovert, that you prefer a crowd to a quiet evening at home. Also, you seem concerned with how others perceive you. You’re probably always well dressed, with makeup and jewelry on. I doubt you’re a sweatpants kind of gal. The number 3 seems important or significant to you. Three branches, three loops on each branch, most of the grass has 3 blades, nine loops on the whole tree, nine birds. No clue how it’s important though! Your trunk is very solid, and wide at the bottom. You have some good parents there. I’m going to play devil’s advocate here for a minute. On one side, the scribble on the trunk is just a scribble. On the other, I’d say there are no mistakes, everything happens for a reason. This side would also say perhaps you had something bad happen in your late teens, like 18-19. Some sort of stressor, but it doesn’t affect you now. Either that or it’s just a scribble. :)

Here are Ange’s thoughts about what her tree said about her (which were sent to me in a shade of purple that I have tried to emulate here :) ):

Happy, happy, joy, joy. Tree #6 you put so many happy things surrounding your tree. According to a freudian analysis (most of our training was freudian or psychodynamic) the sun is a symbol for your father. So my hypothesis, although those freudians have been wrong on occasion, would be that you’re a daddy’s little girl.

I have to say yes and no to the daddy’s little girl part. My dad and I didn’t really get along until I was in my twenties. Now, I’d say I’m closer to him than I am to my mother, but growing up, not really.

The sun is sooo big in comparison to the tree, it almost looks like it’s supporting the tree. There’s a lot of repetition in your drawing, the birds, the grass, the rays of the sun, the flowers. I’m guessing you’re an extrovert, that you prefer a crowd to a quiet evening at home.

I definitely waffle back and forth between wanting to say in or out. On average, my schedule’s pretty busy and I’m always doing something, but there are definitely times when I just want to stay in and do nothing :)

Also, you seem concerned with how others perceive you.

Yes. Totally. I over analyze everything and am always worried that people don’t like me. I’ve already started worrying that no one at the Halifax meet up will like me :P

You’re probably always well dressed, with makeup and jewelry on. I doubt you’re a sweatpants kind of gal.

Considering I constantly take pictures of my outfits to post on my blog and half my income goes to Sephora – yes! However, I do appreciate a nice pair of Lululemon sweatpants on the weekend as well

Hmmmm. I’m beginning to sound a bit like a conundrum, aren’t I?!

The number 3 seems important or significant to you. Three branches, three loops on each branch, most of the grass has 3 blades, nine loops on the whole tree, nine birds. No clue how it’s important though!

I don’t know if I consciously counted, of if I was just trying to make everything symmetrical. I also over analyzed how “best” to draw a tree, so that may have something to do with it :)

Your trunk is very solid, and wide at the bottom. You have some good parents there. I’m going to play devil’s advocate here for a minute. On one side, the scribble on the trunk is just a scribble. On the other, I’d say there are no mistakes, everything happens for a reason. This side would also say perhaps you had something bad happen in your late teens, like 18-19. Some sort of stressor, but it doesn’t affect you now. Either that or it’s just a scribble. :)

Not quite late teens, but my parents did abruptly separate and divorce when I was 21. It was brutal. However, out of that came the good relationship with my father – hence the sun. Maybe?

Here was my random stab at insights about this tree, trying very hard not to take what I knew about its owner into account:

Tree 6:  This tree has a very wide base, which would make me think that they are well-grounded and have a strong sense of values.  The trunk on this one flows smoothly out of that base, so maybe this person’s values are very much a part of their personality.  The three main branches are very evenly placed, so perhaps this person is concerned about how they appear to others and how others will perceive them.  There is a divide between the trunk and the strong and balanced upper section, though, so maybe they often present a carefully constructed persona that may or may not be reflective of what they are with their guard down.  There are a lot of birds around, which could mean a lot of things at their mind, but they aren’t actually on the tree, so maybe this person manages to keep those nagging thoughts at bay for the most part.  The overall effect is fairly bright and friendly.

And here is what Ange had to say about our impressions of her tree:

Tree #6 looks mighty optimistic with the shining sun.

I just wanted to say that Tree #6 looks really happy

Tree 6 [is most optimistic] – Has to be the sunshine. Even though this does seem to conflict with the broken trunk.

Yes, to all accounts of happiness. I’m happy most of the time :)

I think that Tree #6 looks sad! There is a big break near the top of the trunk. That has GOT to mean some kind of turmoil in the drawers life, right? Although the sun is very happy so maybe they are stressed our but positive?

Stressed out but positive is probably a good way to put it :)

Trees 1, 2, 6 and 7 would need a few drinks to join in with the conversation.

Yup, sometimes I do need a few drinks before joining in on the fun. It depends on the day though :)

Tree 6:  This tree has a very wide base, which would make me think that they are well-grounded and have a strong sense of values.  The trunk on this one flows smoothly out of that base, so maybe this person’s values are very much a part of their personality.

I think that’s a pretty true statement.

The three main branches are very evenly placed, so perhaps this person is concerned about how they appear to others and how others will perceive them.

Haha, yup. Totally yes :)

There is a divide between the trunk and the strong and balanced upper section, though, so maybe they often present a carefully constructed persona that may or may not be reflective of what they are with their guard down.  There are a lot of birds around, which could mean a lot of things at their mind, but they aren’t actually on the tree, so maybe this person manages to keep those nagging thoughts at bay for the most part.

I’d say that statement is mostly true. I have Ativan for when I fail at that :P

Thanks for the commentary, Ange, and for allowing us the opportunity to peek into what makes you tick!  And thanks to pinkbrain for another eerily accurate analysis!  I have to say two things:

1)  I think almost ALL of us are/were nervous to varying degrees that people at the meet-up wouldn’t/won’t like us, so you’re definitely not alone there.  :)   But I have no doubt that it will fade quickly once you’re there. We’ll have a blast.  I know for a fact there is a really welcoming group of ladies going.

2)  I think specifying Lululemon sweatpants for your casual attire still puts you safely in the category of fashionable.  ;)

Take a Stab at The Urban Cowgirl!

Thursday, April 21st, 2011

…But not a literal stab! Nerf items and psychological insights only, folks.

It’s been a bit of a crazy day here. Almost forgot that I was going to promise a tree for tomorrow!

I think we should guess Ange’s tree this time. So what do you think? Which ones might be trees that an urban cowgirl could rest her…um…urban horse…beneath, and which ones do you think would be too rural office executive. Or something. :) What’s your first choice?  Your second choice?  Your clearly-it-isn’t-that-one choice?  Don’t forget to share your reasoning if possible. Even if it’s just an unfounded gut instinct, it’s fun to hear!

Trees crossed off

Tree Tuesday – Big Reveal for Spokeit’s Tree!

Tuesday, April 19th, 2011

I know people are going to be talking about this one!

Spokeit is the artist behind…

(drum roll please)

…the infamous Tree #4!

Tree 4 - Spokeit's tree!

A complex tree for a complex lady!

I have to say that this was my husband’s very favourite tree.  He LOVED this tree.  I would be offended, but I loved this tree too.  Apparently my house just loves Spokeit.

Here is what our resident art therapy expert pinkbrain had to say about this tree, without having any information about who it belonged to:

Tree # 4

Confession time. I thought this tree was Cynthia’s tree. I’ve only met her briefly but this is a tree of an extrovert and Cynthia fits that bill! Now I’m very curious who is Tree #4!

As I said, Tree # 4 you are an extrovert. Nothing is hidden. You put everything out there. You talk. A lot. I’m sure you start a lot of projects, but I’m guessing there’s some you might not finish. Most of the branches are open, not to many are closed or complete. You’re a bit of a daredevil or risk taker. Your tree is not safe. The branches look almost too heavy for the trunk of the tree. It’s kind of like you realized it yourself and reinforced the trunk with those extra lines. You’re a dreamer, your mind is in 100 places at once. There’s a lot of movement in the tree but strangely symmetrical. The branches are repeating, but almost rhythmically. I don’t know why but something about the branches makes me think you’re good at math. Huh? I know. Now here is where that HTP test I think is full of hooey. According to the test, a tree without leaves means the person feel barren. There is so much life in this tree though. And really, if you were looking out the window and you’re in a northern climate, that’s what the trees look like right now. As Sigmund Freud once said “sometimes a cigar is just a cigar”. Anyhoo! Yours is an energetic tree.

Here are Spokeit’s reflections on pinkbrain’s analysis:

As I said, Tree # 4 you are an extrovert. Nothing is hidden. You put everything out there. You talk. A lot.

I would consider myself an extrovert- I’m very outgoing and loud.  And while I talk a lot, I’m actually pretty closed-off.  I hide a lot (just personal things though, I don’t keep other stuff hidden).  I have a big problem with opening up to people (this may surprise some of you!)

I’m sure you start a lot of projects, but I’m guessing there’s some you might not finish. Most of the branches are open, not to many are closed or complete.

SO TRUE.  I love to start a million different projects, plans, etc., and most of them are never completed.  I hate this about myself.

You’re a bit of a daredevil or risk taker. Your tree is not safe. The branches look almost too heavy for the trunk of the tree. It’s kind of like you realized it yourself and reinforced the trunk with those extra lines.

I’d say that’s true.  I take a lot of risks.  And I totally did realize about halfway through that I was getting carried away and there was no way that trunk would support those branches.  And to get all philosophical…I think I do this in life.  Take big risks and play daredevil until I realize that it’s not going to work out (hence the projects left unfinished).

You’re a dreamer, your mind is in 100 places at once. There’s a lot of movement in the tree but strangely symmetrical. The branches are repeating, but almost rhythmically.

That’s totally true- I’m a born dreamer.  My mind is never in the same place for long (the OCD doesn’t help that much), but I find comfort in repetition, routine, and unchanging circumstances.  I have a tough time with change, which is probably why a lot of projects aren’t finished.

The energetic part was spot-on- I’m energetic to a fault.  Almost to obnoxious-ness (is that a word?)  The only wrong part was I am AWFUL at math :)

Here was my random stab at insights about this tree:

Tree 4:  This tree seems to have a very solid base, which could mean a solid sense of core traits, whereas the details are wide and varied and still being figured out.  The extra emphasis on the trunk makes me think that this person has clear core priorities, goals, or ideals that are very important to them.  The overall effect suggests that this is a person who wouldn’t mind standing out a little and receiving attention from others.  The big spread at the top and tangled branches suggest to me that this person has a lot on their mind (!), and their thoughts may be trying to keep tabs on many different things at once but are possibly getting a little lost or are not quite able to keep as much focus on everything they would like to since there are so many things taking their attention at once.  Due to the widening at the bottom but lack of roots, I would also suspect that they have some parental support available but don’t rely much on their parents for things most of the time.

And here is what Spokeit had to say about our impressions of her tree:

I think my favorite part was that they thought I would run for political office! While I’m all out there and energetic, I’m far too sensitive for public scrutiny.

Curiosity’s comments on my tree:

Spot on about the number of things on my mind! Count the number of branches on that tree, multiply it by about 400 and that’s the contents of my brain right now. You were right about my parents (and really everyone in my life)- I have SO much support, but one of my biggest faults is that I don’t ask for it.  I have trouble asking for help.

This was SO much fun- and if I didn’t have so many damn things on my mind I’d keep analyzing!

Thank you thank you thank you Pinkbrain and Curiosity!!!

So what do you think?  Can you see it now?  Did it surprise you, or did it just confirm what you already thought?

Let’s guess Spokeit!

Monday, April 18th, 2011

Because I have such an ever-so-firm idea of the best way to approach this tree stuff for maximum fun, input, and sharing, I thought I might try changing things up entirely this time around to see if it made any difference. I know I’m forcing you to do a lot of guessing, but it’s fun, and I want to make sure that people get the chance to hear as much about themselves as possible. :) It occurred to me at the end of last week, that it might be more enlightening to shift the focus from a particular tree each time to a particular person instead. I thought that might lead to more fun insights on how people perceive us (which is half the fun of all this). So I thought I would try that for a while. You can let me know if you think it stinks and would rather go back to the other way. :) Or alternately, you can invite everyone in your pinochle circle to come and guess which tree is yours.  Totally up to you.

So tomorrow, I’m going to reveal which tree belongs to the lovely Spokeit (can’t wait!)! So this is your chance to help give some input on Spokeit and take some guesses. As before, please don’t feel like you need to have submitted your own tree to participate.   If you don’t have any justification for your choices, that’s fine – just share what your gut instinct says. And if you don’t know her very well but still want to guess, that’s totally fine too.  Go with your initial impressions.  So for each tree below, do you think it might be hers (and why), or do you think it probably isn’t hers (and why)? If you can see reasons that it might AND might not be, feel free to share those too!  As a reminder, the full-size set of trees is here for your viewing pleasure.

Trees Crossed Off

Oh…and I hate to have to say this, but I had to reinstate my spam filter (had over 100 spam comments in my inbox to delete in less than a day! Ugh!), and apparently on rare occasions it gets confused by really long comments.  So if you happen to write something really long (which is great, don’t get me wrong!), you might want to do a quick “copy” before you post it…just in case.  It seems to only happen very rarely, but I don’t want us to miss out on what you have to say!

Foliage Friday – Big Reveal for Tree #2!

Friday, April 15th, 2011

Oops!  I almost forgot to post this today.  Heh.  It’s been that sort of a day.

Tree number two comes to us from… mumofgirls!  Welcome, mumofgirls!  This was a neat way to learn more about you.

Tree 2

Tree #2 - Mumofgirls's tree!

Here is pinkbrain’s official analysis of what her tree might have revealed:

Tree #2

You’re a bit of perplexing tree #2. There’s a lot of push and pull, ying and yang in the tree. The roots are solid and deep, but they are not complete and they don’t touch the ground. You’re a sturdy tree, but your branches are hidden. You’re a tree that looks at the big picture, not so much about the details. You seem sad, but yet optimistic towards the future. It’s strange, at first it seemed like a sad tree to me, but the branches and some of the leaves look like a face to me. A big smiling face. But it’s not obvious at first. Perhaps you’re just shy, tree, but others mistake your silence with sadness. The spots that are leaves look like they could be fruit too. Fruit in a tree according to the HTP (house tree person test) means a nurturing personality. You don’t need a lot to make you happy. You’re a simple tree.

And here are mumofgirls’ comments about her tree and what we all had to say about it:

Tree #2

You’re a bit of perplexing tree #2. There’s a lot of push and pull, ying and yang in the tree. The roots are solid and deep, but they are not complete and they don’t touch the ground.

I think that the roots would have touched the ground if I did the drawing on paper.  I think this was a conflict due to working with the computer.

You’re a sturdy tree, but your branches are hidden. You’re a tree that looks at the big picture, not so much about the details.

I think this is quite true.  I stay calm when faced with big projects as I don’t get caught up with the little things.

You seem sad, but yet optimistic towards the future. It’s strange, at first it seemed like a sad tree to me, but the branches and some of the leaves look like a face to me. A big smiling face. But it’s not obvious at first. Perhaps you’re just shy, tree, but others mistake your silence with sadness.

I am quite shy.  I am someone that people will recognize at the bus stop and arrange playdates for the children etc. but not one to become close to my neighbors.  I think I avoid people thinking I’m sad as I am always smiling like my tree.  I liked that the branches looked like a smile.

The spots that are leaves look like they could be fruit too. Fruit in a tree according to the HTP (house tree person test) means a nurturing personality. You don’t need a lot to make you happy. You’re a simple tree.

The dots were meant to be apples.  I am quite nurturing to my children and to the ‘family’ of au pairs and nannys that we have lived with over the last decade.  I am very easy going and cheerful which is just as well as my life is full of changes.  I would like to think that I am not a complex person.  What you see is who I am.

I totally want to hug #2

That would be weird for me as I am very British!  Just make me a cup of tea and chocolate biscuit if you wanted to cheer me up. :)

Tree 2 – probably at the party, dragged by a friend, wanting to go home and read a good book.

I do find parties hard work (just getting old) and would prefer a night at home watching mindless TV or reading a book.

Tree 2 appears concerned about a lot of things – in a way reminds me of Eeyore (in a totally loving way, that is)

I love Eeyore but I don’t think I’m like him.  I juggles lots of things but I’m upbeat rather than wallowing in despair.

Trees 1, 2, 6 and 7 would need a few drinks to join in with the conversation.

A drink would be needed but some alcohol with Diet Coke would be my preference.

Tree 2:  This tree is much wider at the bottom than the top, and has thick roots, so maybe this person is very solidly grounded and hard to frazzle.

I agree with that. :)

It looks like most of it is one solid line, which could mean someone who knows what they want, and sets out to get it without much hesitation.

I have always been quite determined.  Although I have no control over where and when we move, I do try to make sure everything else goes my way!

The fruit (or maybe leaves?) dots seem somewhat whimsical to me, so maybe this person has a funny or easy-going side.  They could also suggest that this person often has details on their mind, or if they are fruit, that they are open and like to share or provide for others.  The overall effect seems like someone who is not afraid to be a little bold, but at the same time isn’t super far from societal norms.

They were fruit and I am confident but not known to push the boundaries.  I like to go with the flow which makes me very easy to get along with.

What an interesting way to introduce myself!  I look forward to meeting more of you as the trees are revealed.

Please feel free to post the comments and let Pinkbrain know how well she did!

Thanks for participating, and thanks again to pinkbrain for her savvy analysis skills!  Can’t wait for the next one…Should be good!