28 September, 2010

So my 30 Day Blog Challenge was both a success and a fail. Success because i ALMOST finished something that i started, and fail because i didn't! hahaha

Oh well. Life happens. Actually i got to the last couple days - and all the way up to a week after i had passed the deadline, i was convinced that i could still go back and do it.
But! I am not like that. I should have known myself better. If it gets past a certain point, there's just no drive anymore. Sorry, Internet.

I did, however, complete other things. Currently in my Etsy.com shop are some pretty felt brooches that i have hand-made. It's actually pretty hard to put a price on your art. For me, i know the time that went into each piece and the thought and the love that went with them too... so i think they might be worth more than what someone would pay for them. But! that's part of selling things, isn't it? Especially when it comes to creative things. You have to be willing to start at the bottom.

Ground level.

Speaking of ground level, that is where i'm blogging from. I *should* be on a flight to JFK right now, but i am not. I am sitting in my cottage with a roaring fire in front of my feet. "Why?", you ask.
Well i won't go into detail right now - because it has to do with standby tickets and unless you're familiar with the process it won't make sense... but i will say that it has to do with standby tickets and full airplanes.
I'm beginning to wonder if i'll be able to get to WA or OH at all this week (or next!).
Needless to say, i'm a bit discouraged.


15 September, 2010

Day twenty-eight: An art piece (drawing, sculpture, painting, etc) that means something to me.

The Family Circle by Dennis Smith has always been a cherished sculpture in my family. We always had a small one, but unfortunately it broke, and i would love to replace it - but can't find it anywhere. If you know where i can buy one, please let me know!

14 September, 2010

day twenty-seven: my dream house

But seriously, it would have too many visitors, crying children, and a very noisy yard. Although it *is* quite pretty, don't you think? Just not practical.

My real dream home (for someday when i have children, a stable and well-paying job, and have settled somewhere) would look something like this, i think:

Maybe a bit less extravagant. I love light, i love fireplaces, i would love to have a patio to entertain on... a yard for the kids, a place for the cat to play outdoors, and a place to garden in. Perhaps even a greenhouse.
I love to throw parties. My hope is that someday when we're settled, that we'll have made some friends - moved close to our friends we already have, and of course had children who will play together - and i'll be able to have lots of game nights and bonfires and fun get-togethers for everyone to participate in. My mom was that way, and i think that's where i get it.
But as much as i love to host a party, i also love my space. I would like to be somewhere out of the way, with no immediate neighbors within a stone's throw - but close enough to a city that i dont have to drive an hour to get groceries. I want to live on a mountain, and still be able to visit the ocean.
Sound like too much to ask? Not to me! Alaska is the place to be.

13 September, 2010

Day twenty-six: A photo that makes me angry/sad

12 September, 2010

Day twenty-five: A photo that makes me happy.

11 September, 2010

Day twenty-four: My favourite book

The Princess Bride by William Goldman. This should go under the previous post of something i could never get sick of! I have read this book countless times (so much so that i bought a back up book in case my first one ever gets too worn to read). 
I have read a lot of books in my life - but never laughed so much and so hard at a novel. In fact i don't usually laugh at TV or books while i'm enjoying them, to be honest. This book changed that.
Even Terry Pratchett fans say that this book is hilarious, and if you know Terry Pratchett books, you know funny. 

My love affair started for the Princess Bride when i was about 8 or 9. I was sick (it must have been fate) and home from school. My mom turned on the TV for me and channel surfed until she found what seemed like an interesting movie, then left me on the couch in the living room while she went to another part of the house to do her mom stuff. I was enthralled by this movie (even though the ROUS' scared me and my dad had to convince me after a nightmare that it wasn't *really* Westly's shoulder they were ripping apart and it was ketchup, not blood)!  I didn't understand all the humor but i think it was one of the first live-action movies that i watched as a kid that left an imprint on my brain. I wanted to watch it all the time! But alas. I did not know the name of the movie and felt embarrassed to ask (for some strange reason). 
Time went by and i thought of the movie every now and then but still didn't know what to search for (we didn't have internet yet, and even if we did, there was no Google). We went to visit friends one day during a road trip weekend when i was 12, and while the adults had their conversation, my dad's friend said i could put on a movie. I looked through all the movies and happened upon one... and immediately recognised the ROUS on the back cover!! "This one!" i exclaimed, and happily watched the movie almost twice in a row. If you know me, you know that THAT was preposterous.
Before a camp out when i was about 14, we went to a bookstore in Utah to browse. As i looked through the books, i was immediately drawn to the artwork on the cover (see above), and saw that it was the BOOK that the MOVIE was made from! I had to have it. At the bargain price of $6, it was mine.
That weekend, in front of the fire pit and bundled from head to toe in warm things (as we camped in Northern Idaho in October! brr!!) i could not put the book down. I finished it in record time (for me), laughing and getting strange looks from my family. Then a few months later, i read it again.
Then i watched the movie and discovered that lines from the book were verbatim in the movie! Delightful! In the book, Fezzik has more rhymes, Vizzini is more dastardly, and Inigo is much more heroic, if that were even possible. Yes,  at times when i've had to put my books in storage or leave books behind, this book has come with me. Always. I will always have this book on my shelf.
It means that much to me.

above artwork by Dave McClellan.

10 September, 2010

day twenty-three: Something i could never get tired of doing.

Scrapbooking, Photoshop, Photography, and otherwise being creative. I can literally sit in front of my craft station for an entire day and not realize the time is flying by. I love to scrapbook, but unfortunately, it's an expensive hobby - and for now, i can only have one expensive hobby, Photography.
At least it pays something back :)

09 September, 2010

Day Twenty-Two: My celebrity crush.

Actually, i have two - Hugh Laurie and Michael Bublé.
To me, both are fairly handsome, but i think what makes me have a "crush" on them is more the fact that they're both hilarious. A girl always loves a man who can make her laugh. Michael Bublé has the added bonus that he's got an amazing talent for singing - but, Mr. Laurie is also a talented musician.
sigh. i do love them so.

08 September, 2010

Day Twenty-One: 5 of my biggest pet peeves.

*edit* i got a ton of flack for this particular post, so i ask you to please take this with a grain of salt. I don't need your opinions of why this shouldn't be a pet peeve. I am a pretty reasonable person and can usually look at something from both sides - that doesn't mean it won't still annoy me.
pet peeve
n. Informal
Something about which one frequently complains; a particular and often continual annoyance.
1915–20, Americanism
 In no particular order:

one: People whistling. Not the short, sharp, whistle to get someone's attention - the jerk who whistles in the car, at the desk near yours, in the grocery store. Idle, random, whistling (especially if it's some goshawful "tune") really puts me on edge - and often, can even contribute to a mood swing. If i can't get away from it fast enough (or at all! ahh!!), i honestly feel like i could punch something.

two: Strollers and the pushers of said strollers. Yes. You. Jerk. First, if your kid is old enough to walk, why are you pushing him/her in a stroller? Second, why the hell are you pushing the most mammoth stroller on the market around a crowded public event? Rudeness! Imagine how crowded it is, then think about your stroller. Most likely, you inadvertently run over other peoples' feet and into peoples' achilles tendon (thanks, by the way). You use your stroller as a battering ram to get through the crowd, and as an excuse for being rude. You take up too much room on the trolley, you block doors and other places that i want to see or get into. You look ridiculous trying to get the damn thing up the stairs (take your baby out, you lazy moron). You crowd elevators. And the umbrella strollers? I must admit, i would much prefer you push your tot on that (SO much smaller and less annoying) - but keep your kid in check! Don't let your stupid little kid kick me while you're waiting in line behind me - or equally as bad, rest his/her feet on my bag. I know you can see it happening. The stroller is not a wall for you to hide behind to avoid awkward social interactions. I'll go ahead and add into this pet peeve, the parents who let their noisy, screaming, children run-a-muck inside a store or at any socially unacceptable place. They're usually the same people with the gigantic stroller for the smaller child anyway.

three: litterbugs. Now really, there's just no excuse for throwing your trash around. You're a lazy ass and don't want to be responsible for the garbage you just created. You are a consumer. You are a disgrace to society. 

four:  Bad Table Manners. It's one thing if you're joking around with some close friends. It's another thing altogether if you grab at food the moment it's placed in front of you without any regard to other eaters (and possibly, the person who made it for you), burp loudly, chew with your mouth open, and slurp your soup. I grew up in a home where we didn't dish up or eat until either we were invited to or everyone had sat down together and we had prayed. I don't usually pray over my meals anymore but i insist on waiting until everyone is seated and is ready. At a restaurant, i won't eat until everyone has received their food. I hate it when people pick up their plate to reduce the distance between their face and the food, or alternately when they prop themselves up on their elbow with their face 6 inches above their plate. Noisy eaters and vulgar speech at the table fall under this category too.

five: sleeping in a bed without sheets, or trying to sleep when the sheets and blankets are no longer tucked into the end of the bed. For some reason this really gets to me. I hate feeling the blanket over my feet and the sheet over my legs when i am trying to go to sleep. I actually have to get up and pretty much re-make the bed. I imagine that this pet peeve will lead to me making the bed every morning, eventually. haha

and without explaining, here are some more:
- tapping
- obnoxious pen-clicking
- people who don't say please and thank-you
- signs, books, posters, ads with mis-spellings
- bad parking
- people who give their kids weird names
- people who mis-use their/they're/there and your/you're
- backseat drivers
- door-dingers
- the "yes but" people
- no paper towels/ toilet paper in a public restroom
- public restrooms
- loud whisperers
- people who smack their gum
- tailgaters
- other peoples' dumb and super friendly, drooly, smelly, dogs.
- dogs that jump up (when they're not supposed to)
- yappy dogs that don't shut up
- freezer burn
- mumblers
- bathroom stalls with a mirror so you can see your whole self while seated 
- bad umbrella etiquette
- overuse of the word "like"
- telemarketers
- people that always talk about their illness, "disease", or chronic state of unwell, especially if they are obviously making it sound worse than it is.
- one-uppers
- the word "anal" as used for "anal retentive"

wow. that list makes me sound like a generally annoyed person! but i'm not. i promise. lol

07 September, 2010

Day Twenty: My worst habit.

Hmm... I have two, actually.

The first - Popping my knuckles. I do it as a nervous habit, and as something to do when i feel like my hands should be doing something and aren't. Now, before you go writing in that i'll have arthritis or that my fingers will fall off, please read the super informative (and short!) article at the end of this blog.

My second worst habit - i'd have to say is swearing. It's so easy to get into - and i dont' remember why i started swearing hardcore (note: i didn't swear at all until i was about 21, other than the occasional "ass", "damn", and "hell" - none of which i consider swears), but i assume it had something to do with what i call "the rebellion" stage in my life. I was going through a divorce, and trying to make up for lost time as far as the wrong friends i never had as a teen - and with the wrong friends come bad decisions... lol
I kicked the habit for about two years, only to fall back into it after a nasty break up. Then i kicked it again after another year or so when i moved to Ohio (and folks, by kicked, i mean reduced by 90% at least). For some reason in the past 9 months i've picked it back up and i can't even blame it on my husband. He very rarely says anything other than "feck" and even more rarely, a swear in Polish. I have no excuses.

and now, the article.

What Makes Your Knuckles Pop?
by: Katherine Neer

If you've ever laced your fingers together, turned your palms away from you and bent your fingers back, you know what knuckle popping sounds like. Joints produce that CRACK when bubbles burst in the fluid surrounding the joint.

Joints are the meeting points of two separate bones, held together and in place by connective tissues and ligaments. All of the joints in our bodies are surrounded by synovial fluid, a thick, clear liquid. When you stretch or bend your finger to pop the knuckle, you're causing the bones of the joint to pull apart. As they do, the connective tissue capsule that surrounds the joint is stretched. By stretching this capsule, you increase its volume. And as we know from chemistry class, with an increase in volume comes a decrease in pressure. So as the pressure of the synovial fluid drops, gases dissolved in the fluid become less soluble, forming bubbles through a process called cavitation. When the joint is stretched far enough, the pressure in the capsule drops so low that these bubbles burst, producing the pop that we associate with knuckle cracking.

It takes about 25 to 30 minutes for the gas to redissolve into the joint fluid. During this period of time, your knuckles won't crack. Once the gas is redissolved, cavitation is once again possible, and you can start popping your knuckles again.

As for the harms associated with this habit, according to Anatomy and Physiology Instructors' Cooperative, only one in-depth study regarding the possible detriments of knuckle popping has been published. This study, done by Raymond Brodeur and published in the Journal of Manipulative and Physiological Therapeutics, examined 300 knuckle crackers for evidence of joint damage. The results revealed no apparent connection between joint cracking and arthritis; however, habitual knuckle poppers did show signs of other types of damage, including soft tissue damage to the joint capsule and a decrease in grip strength. This damage is most likely a result of the rapid, repeated stretching of the ligaments surrounding the joint. A professional baseball pitcher experiences similar, although obviously heightened, effects in the various joints of his pitching arm. But assuming you haven't signed a multimillion dollar contract to constantly pop your knuckles, it hardly seems worth the possible risk to your joints.

­On the positive side, there's evidence of increased mobility in joints right after popping. When joints are manipulated, the Golgi tendon organs (a set of nerve endings involved in humans' motion sense) are stimulated and the muscles surrounding the joint are relaxed. This is part of the reason why people can feel "loose" and invigorated after leaving the chiropractor's office, where cavitation is induced as part of the treatment. Backs, knees, elbows and all other movable joints are subject to the same kind manipulation as knuckles are.

 article found here.

06 September, 2010

Day Nineteen: A picture of me last year and now and how have I changed since then?

Well i'll be honest with you. I'm going to bend the "rules" a little and not post a photo of last year - but this is my most recent photo (taken with my webcam when i was too lazy to find a camera).
I try not to dwell on the past too much but when i think about how i've changed since last year, all i can remember are the wounds i sustained while getting through life from August to December. All i can think of is the pain associated with what was supposed to be a joyous time in life - preparing for my wedding.
The long and the short of it though, is that i AM different. Better, i think. How? In lots of ways. I think i become a new person about every 6 months, to be honest. With that in mind, i've changed TWICE since then... haha!
Without wanting to go into too much detail, i can say that i'm happier. That's all i need. :)

05 September, 2010

Day Eighteen: A photo of somewhere i've been to.

Hmm. I've been many places...
This is Pismo Beach, near San Luis Obispo, California.
I went there to visit a friend of mine, Phil, introduced by a mutual friend, Sara, in December of '08. He was generous enough to give me his bed (he slept on the guest bed), share his food, and drive me around to show me the sights around where he lived, including an avocado orchard. It was amazing! The weather was fantastically warm and wonderful... it was my first ever vacation without an agenda. Strictly relaxation. I had a great time, and was sad to have to go home to wintry Cincinnati.
What made me think about this photo was actually, my friend Sara - i've been thinking about her a lot today and since she likes warm places (she has been on many cruises... 15, i think! lol) i thought i'd choose something she was connected to (even if it is remotely). She'll understand, and that's what matters :)

04 September, 2010

Day Seventeen: A photo of something that means a lot to me.

So i realize that this is a photo of my entire room - rather than something specifically that means a lot to me... but oh well. This photo is supposed to show my quilt.
My grandmother made this for me over the course of time... she hand-sewed her love right into it, and sent it to me just in time for my 22nd birthday. It especially means a lot because my sweet mother helped pick out the colors and (i think) the pattern, so she is a part of it too - ironic because this post falls on the 4 year anniversary of her passing. I love tracing the squares on it when i'm having a bad day or when i miss my family. It makes me feel a little closer to them.
It keeps me warm on cold nights and comforted when i'm sick. If there were a fire, this would be one of the items i would save.

03 September, 2010

Day Sixteen: What's in my purse.

Sorry about my first 2 seconds in this (my first ever!) vlog. I can't stand the sound of my own voice! haha
here you go. Enjoy.

02 September, 2010

Day Fifteen: Something I crave a lot.

Yes. It is true. I love avocados. I make pretty much the best guacamole i have ever eaten (i even made up the recipe...), and a friend of mine helped develop another recipe for guacamole that we lovingly call "G2". They are both a closely guarded secret though, so i will not be sharing them online. Sorry.

I can't remember when my love for guacamole started - but it was definitely when i was little. Perhaps i don't remember it because i've been eating it all my life... My mother used to smash up some avocados with a little bit of salsa and voila! My first ever guacamole recipe! haha
I pretty much love everything to do with them. They're good for thyroid levels, can lower cholesterol, and boost your immune system. It's good for pregnant ladies (folic acid). It's good as baby food (because it's filling and full of carbohydrates), but beware! It's rich in fiber so with avocados come poop. haha
There are tons of benefits to eating avocados! I wish i could eat one a day... i even used to have avocado chapstick.

There are lots of things having to do with avocados that i want to partake in. If anyone wonders what to get me for Christmas - here you go.

Who wouldn't want to serve their guacamole in this?! It even has a lid!!! Amazing! I've seen these bowls before in a store in Ohio, but never picked one up. I suppose i was just hoping for the best :)

I found this necklace on etsy.com! I'm sad that it's been sold, but look how amazingly cute and detailed it is! It even has the gradient from dark to light green! 

This hat is from zazzle.com - and i must say it's pretty damn cute. I don't wear hats much - but if i did i would probably buy this. It's that awesome.
Wait. how did that get in there? Never buy this for me... okay maybe for Halloween. Found here.

01 September, 2010

Day Fourteen: A photo of something that makes me happy.

This was actually a hard one for me until i remembered i can take screen shots. I was confounded for how to take a photo of myself photoshopping an image - but then that's more of a photo of me DOING something that makes me happy...  At any rate - here you go. Photo editing.


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