Tuesday, June 30, 2009

silver lining part one

While going to my French class is miserably brutal and enduring multiple quizzes per week is not my idea of summer fun, there are quite a few great things about learning French. Not least of which is getting to read this book, and this book, and this book in a new language! Okay, maybe I'm not quite to that last one. But I can hold my own with The Giving Tree!

Plus, of course, there is always the food. Oh the food.

Sunday, June 28, 2009

yeah, yeah

I love this clip!

Which do you think is the sweetest move - - the q-tip or the pizza?

Happy Sunday

The sun is shining and my kitties are purring.
It is beautiful.
I plan on studying my French,
playing with paper,
dreaming about the wedding,
and filling up on pure and natural vitamin D
like a glutton.

Saturday, June 27, 2009

a little something unexpected

If you haven't already noticed, I am on a massive picnic kick. First I came across the cutest red retro picnic set, then this picture, and now this:

Strolling through the old posts on Design*Sponge I struck gold. This is pretty much the coolest thing ever. Check out the full post {here} for more photos and a detailed "how to". I love the cool wooden utensils too!

Friday, June 26, 2009


A quiz on day two. Another on day five. C'est tr├Ęs crappy.
Still. I'm in it to win and by 2:30 I'll be free flyin' for the weekend.

Thursday, June 25, 2009

how to be a successful academic, lesson one

{from HERE, click to enlarge!}
So true. Take notes.


This is happiness.
I love to give books to my nephews and nieces.
And I've developed a love of certain kids books in particular to give.
So earlier this week I got a package together for the new parents-to-be.
When I was trying to think of what to write for the message
this photo just kept popping into my head.
This is what I wish for them.
A kid running through the house with big balloons.
Smiling ear to ear, giggling like crazy along the way.

Wednesday, June 24, 2009


The philosopher and I have begun our summer jobs: learning (or at least passing) French. Don't kid yourself, it is brutal. I know, I know. It sounds "so fun" for anyone and everyone not a.) required to take it b.) being graded on progress or c.) royally screwing their GPA in the process. We had our first quiz yesterday (oh yeah, DAY TWO) and we'll meet Friday for another - yikes! I think the worst of it is the incredibly LONG class periods. 11:50 - 2:10 is horrific. By 12:15 I am very ready to leave. *Hopefully in the end it will all be wonderful and worth it. But as my mother used to say, the light at the end of the tunnel is the train coming towards you.

{photo by Anne Geddes}

On a different note, L & I received some *very* exciting news on Sunday - - someone very special to us is going to be a NEW FATHER in about 7 months! There is a serious baby boom going on around here - my sister just had a baby, one of the philosopher's cousins just had a baby, and now we've got news of another! In all honesty, the baby fever makes me a little bit sad because sometimes it just feels so far away from my near-future. But nonetheless I'm thrilled for the joyous expansion! Until more is known about the little person in making, I'll have to remain content showering the happy couple with gender-neutral gifts. I wish them all the best as they continue falling in love with their growing baby!

Monday, June 22, 2009

Have you ever been in a little bit of a slump and were just kickin' it, killing time till the mullygrubs left? I am. And I'm not really feeling the bloggin' spirit. I'll be back soon...

Sunday, June 21, 2009


Today the philosopher and I are making lunch for a tres spectacular party in honor of Father's day and two special birthdays. I wrapped up the gifts last night and we're headed out for the ingredients in about an hour. Of course, when I say we're making lunch I really mean to say we're buying lunch and heating it up... I had glorious plans for making homemade enchiladas complimented with beans, rice, chips & salsa, and virgin pina coladas. But my laziness got the best of me... and I decided that my Mexi-plans might be a little overboard for lunch. So instead, we're going to buy some of my favorite, locally made butternut squash ravioli to be complimented with broccoli, organic bread from the Essential Baking Co., drinks with umbrella straws, and maybe some chocolates or brownies to finish it all off. Heck, I might even take over some fun napkins if I can find some in my stash - - yes, that is right. I store up on fun napkins. For L and I the party doesn't end after lunch. Since summer quarter starts tomorrow we're going to finish off our week long break with another day of our movie-thon. Only today will be different than the rest because we're going to the theater instead of our sofa.

money, money, money

Weddingbee has started a new feature on budgets. After revealing the national average for wedding expenses they decided to start sharing real life budgets from the hive. Today they shared a wedding budget that totaled $55k (that doesn't include the rehearsal dinner, honeymoon, rings, or day after brunch). Now, this isn't the first large figure budget to be featured but there has been diversity: $7 k weddings, $13k, $15k, $20k, $30, $35k, etc... have been included in the mix.

My question: does this sound reasonable? Have you had a wedding? If so, did it approximate the national average of $30k? Was it more along the lines of today's $55k feature? Or, do these figures seem wildly extravagant?

Saturday, June 20, 2009

plan for the rest of the day

1. wrap gifts for party tomorrow
2. go for a walk with my philosopher
3. read... something...
4. continue movie-thon

song of myself, and yourself, and their-self...

{one of Bella's designs via Snippet & Ink}
This morning as I sipped my coffee and swooned over beautiful paper samples I've collected in the name of wedding research I realized something interesting: the paper samples from Bella Figura demonstrating their choices for paper color and ply all feature quotes from Walt Whitman's Song of Myself. Coincidence, eh? Just another, absolutely unnecessary, reason to LOVE BELLA FIGURA.


{some of the books we used for our research}
For those that don't know, the online academic journal "Intersections" is going to publish the Spring 2009 issue on July 5th. Some articles in the current issue are already up on the site, though, and are readable. Why do I care? Well, for one thing Luke and I worked as editors for this issue of the journal. But, more importantly, we've both got published papers in this edition! Click {here} to check it out.

Friday, June 19, 2009

lazy day lectures

The philosopher and I love to listen to lectures,
especially from The Teaching Company.
Recently, I've been listening to lectures on 20th century American Fiction.
It is a particularly good series, I think, by Arnold Weinstein.
Anyhow, the lectures on Walt Whitman have been really interesting.
Several times I've been reminded of Deleuze and Guattari - -
of course, lately I've been reminded of them all over the place.
Nonetheless, I'm itching to get my hands on a copy of Song of Myself.


I recently came across the comics on A Softer World
from a cool follower on Tumblr.

Here are my favorites:
(click 'em for a larger read)


{photo from Cynthia Warren via here}

Today I have invitation fever!
It is wonderful yet difficult.
Of course, the philosopher keeps reminding me
that no one but ME cares about the invites.
The most important, if unintended, part of his reminder:

Although I do wonder if it is true that I will be the sole appreciator
of our will-be lovely invites.
After all, I've saved special invitations I've received over the years
either because the people who sent it are special or because the invite itself
was just too spectacular to part with.
Who knows... maybe a few of them will escape the trash bin.

Right now, these are a few of the things inspiring me:

{smock invites}

{Twig & Thistle invites}

{Studio on Fire Invites}

and these {from Chelle Paperie}

Thursday, June 18, 2009

island time

The philosopher and I have been visiting my mom on Bainbridge.
Besides spending time laughing and talking with my mom
we've been busy buying a suit for Luke, eating Mexican food,
reading, eating junk food, watching movies,
cleaning, weeding, and, again, eating Mexican food.
Tonight we plan on playing with our kitties, eating Big Salads,
and finishing our favorite trilogy.
Happy Thursday!

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

poop bags

These are the funniest things I've seen all week!

Okay, true story: L and I like to go walking around our neighborhood. Every time we go, and I mean EVERY TIME, we see at least 2 people picking up their puppy's poo - - usually more like 4-6. No joke. Now, I'm not dissing them. I think it is great. Very responsible. And, if it were my yard the doggie had chosen, I would expect that the own would whip out a pooper scooper. Nonetheless, we think it is hilarious and, honestly, kind of nasty to not only see these people picking it up but then continuing their walk around the neighborhood dangling their bag of treasure as they go. It reminds me repeatedly of a bit Jerry Seinfeld used to do about how if aliens were to come to our planet and try to figure out which species is in charge they would pick the dogs.

{images found here, of course}

heavy metal

I've got a thing for metal... copper, pewter, and gold in particular.
It started with paper actually.
I'm ultra obsessive lately about invitations (I have been for a while now)
and I've ordered quite a few paper samples in the name of research.
My favorite paper sample came from this wonderful site.
It is handmade Indian silk paper with raised copper dots.
The photo {found here} DOES NOT do it even the least bit of justice.
It is gorgeous. Fantastic. Amazing. Magnificent. Incredible.
I love it.
And, it made me begin to love copper. Copper everywhere.
Copper appliances, copper mailboxes, copper pots and pans.
But then, before I knew it, I was finding myself drawn more to
I still LOVE the paper but copper appliances and cookware
are quite the hassle to keep clean.
Pewter, on the other hand, is sturdy and low maintenance.
And, I happen to think, it has a wonderful rustic charm.
Flatware, stemware, carafes...
they would all look so lovely next to a colorful pottery dish set.
But then, before I knew it, I was finding myself drawn more to
Gold, gold, gold, gold.
I've never really been big on gold before.
But now I just can't get enough of it.
Gold jewelry, gold china, gold picture frames, gold stationary...
At this point, I still love all three.
But I think I love gold the most. I mean come on.
Just look at that ring.


I would like to live here.

Monday, June 15, 2009


This picture has been really inspiring me lately...
even if the model looks a lot like Taylor Swift.
Actually, that might
be Taylor Swift. No matter.

I'm also loving this retro picnic set.

It makes me want to go to the lake,
picnic with my philosopher,
and lay in a hammock cuddling and reading
for the rest of the afternoon.

home grown goodness

This morning Luke and I picked fresh lettuce from our own little garden.
I love it. As I think about having a larger garden of our own at some point
I must remind myself that I've gotten a very special, low maintenance
introduction to gardening. Do you remember the end of Wall-E when the
ship captain is showing the kids how to garden? He is so enthusiastic
as he talks about the things they'll be able to produce
- pizza plants being one of them! That is about how I feel.
Anything is possible. Plant the seeds and they grow!
The philosopher and I tried to start slowly, only planting things
that are difficult to mess up or ruin.
Meanwhile, my will-be mother-in-law has perfected everything else.
All together the garden has: snap peas, lettuce, spinach, carrots, tomatoes,
bell peppers, watermelons, cucumbers, squash, rhubarb, green onions,
cauliflower... and probably some more things I'm not aware of.

{the garden}

{our little plot with lettuce, spinach, carrots, green onions, and bell peppers}

{the view from the street}

A very personal Inspiration Board of Sorts

This is my current personal inspiration board for le wedding.
{click it to see!}

sources/shops from the top, left to right:
1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7*, 8, 9, 10, 11,
12, 13, 14, 15, 16, 17, 18, 19, 20, 21, 22,
23, 24, 25, 26, 27, 28, 29, 30, 31, 32, 33*,
34, 35, 36, 37, 38, 39, 40, 41, 42, 43, 44
* If anyone recognizes photos 7 or 38 and knows the source,
please share so I can give proper credit!

Sunday, June 14, 2009

turning pigsty into paradise, a sweet little dream of epic proportions

Now that finals are officially over
it is time to break down and start cleaning up.
No more being a slob.
First up: living room. Next: my study/studio/storage space.
Maybe in the mess I'll come across a magic genie
who will make it look like this:

Since I am not a disney character my wish probably won't be granted.
But someday I might just make my own wish come true.
Patience. Just need patience.
In the meantime, I'll swoon over Heather Bailey's beautiful studio
over a morning croissant and coffee,
blissfully ignoring my impending clean-spree doom.

Saturday, June 13, 2009

many different people, many different kinds

The philosopher's sister recently boarded a plane on her way to Jamaica with a group of service-learners. At dinner before she left a group of us got to talking about cultural differences and volunteer opportunities abroad. After taking a class on indigenous rights and doing research for a paper on the problematic tourism industry in Indonesia, I am very conflicted about the 'right' for people to travel to developing or colonized countries, even if they have good intentions. After all, even in places many don't tend to think of as colonized, like Hawaii, there are many locals who are unwelcoming to visitors (Haunani-Kay Trask has a lot to say about this).

In the course of conversation one person expressed the opinion that traveling to a "Western" European country - especially to do service work - was not a very rewarding experience. It doesn't expose the visitor to cultural differences or diversity; it doesn't help people who need help. While I'm still unsure what I really think about all of this, I have come to one conclusion: there are ('cultural') differences to be found everywhere - in Europe, in Asia, even in the United States.

A swanky, extravagant bathroom in our very own Los Angeles. Now let me ask you, would you feel comfortable using that toilet? I've gotta be honest, if I were visiting my oh-so-glamorous friend in Laurel Canyon, excused myself to visit the ladies room, and came across this opulent scene, I wouldn't know what to do. Should I lift the lid? Do I press a button? Am I in the right place? I mean, I see the toilet paper roll but.... uh.... I feel like I'm missing something. Now, if you're as un-'cultured' as I apparently am, you may be thinking to yourself, "that isn't a toilet". But, I did some research and I can say with confidence, that is a toilet. A $3000 hatbox toilet. {Is it just me or is it really gross to bring hats and toilets together in porcelain association?}

When I came across this picture and started musing about cultural differences I remembered a cultural learning experience that I actually had. A few summers ago when I was roaming around Europe I remember coming across a number of these and being very, very uncomfortable. It was a hark back to my days on the ranch or my ONE experience camping. Oye. And, just in case you're going to be visiting France anytime soon and are not accustomed to such differences, I recommend this article.

The mail man came to visit today...

...and he brought me something really special.

They're even prettier in person.
Talk to Meg to get some of your very own.


{click to enlarge the cuppie goodness!}

One of the great things about living in Seattle is getting to see Jessie Oleson's art around town. Cute watercolor paintings of cuppies in action, robots, ice cream cones and so forth just make my day. I know what you're thinking. "Didn't you just get through raving about all the sweet treats you like more than cupcakes??" Yes. It is true. There are things I like to eat more than cupcakes. But it is tough to pull off a painting of tiramisu visiting the space needle (unless you count the tiramisu riding around in my love handles). I think my favorite cakespy image is the spoof of Andy Warhol and his tomato soup piece. The hair just kills me! But they're all pretty awesome.

Friday, June 12, 2009

An Extravagant Inspiration Board of Sorts

sources/shops from the top, left to right:
1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12
Once again, I can't remember where I found no. 12.
If you recognize it, please let me know the source so I may give proper credit!

Thursday, June 11, 2009

technologically illiterate

Evidently I am an idiot but I cannot manage to comment on blogs that ask for your "id" (i.e. livejournal, google account, openid, etc...). Even putting in my openid clicking submit just refreshes the page without the comment added. Does anyone know what I'm doing wrong?

best wedding invitation ever. period.

sweet tooth

What is the deal with cupcakes these days? They've become ultra trendy... perhaps it was the arrival of Katie Holmes on the celebrity scene with her five story cupcake tower for Posh Spice. I'm not sure. Don't get me wrong, I like cupcakes. They're cute {really cute} and sometimes come in great, swanky packaging and my philosopher is really goooooodddd at making them. Plus, trophy's lemon has me HOOKED. Still. How did this little treat become the epitome of cool? To be honest, as much as I like cupcakes, there are a lot of other sweets that I adore... much more.

For instance, if the classic black tie Napoleons would become popular and available everywhere I would be the happiest (and most voluptuous) girl ever. They're miraculous. Sweet, buttery, a little crunchy. Ekk. They're impossible to explain. And, near impossible to find - good ones anyway. The absolute BEST Napoleons I've ever had were all at the La Madeline in Austin (the Bee Caves location). Seattle has a sweet, very french bakery by the market that also makes them well but being near campus, and not wanting to spend next month's rent on parking, I don't get to indulge very often.

What else do I love, a little more than cupcakes? Candy apples from Rocky Mountain Chocolate Co. At around $7 a pop they better be delicious, right?! My favorite is the Tiger Stripe followed closely by the Apple Pie apple. Yum. If anyone knows a good recipe for these, please do share! Every visit to my nieces and nephews ends up being an excuse for an apple party. I think I'm not the only one who gets excited... :)

Lastly, I think I'd choose a piece of well-made tiramisu over a cupcake *almost* any day. But again, like Napoleons, it can be difficult to find well-made tiramisu. I was sadly disappointed by my local Whole Foods version. If anyone finds a great dive with this amazing Italian dessert in Seattle, I would love to know about it.

sweet freedom.

Yesterday was an absolute paper-writing marathon. Got up ridiculously early, things were going well. By noon my grumbling stomach was becoming impossible to ignore. Quick break for re-fueling. Things are still going good. And then, as seven o'clock begins to roll around, I feel myself getting a little bit sleepy. Slowly I notice my head and face feeling much larger and heavier than usual. I begin to feel the bags forming under my eyes. Big bags. Ears starting to buzz a little; slower reaction time. Before I know it I'm munching on New York Style Focaccia Sticks just to stay awake and the "hearty crunch" is sounds unbelievably loud in my head.
{The deadline for the paper was extended, btw. Till midnight, last night.} By 12:58 I'm pressing send, getting my paper in just on time. Wheww. But then, this morning, I get a message saying the file wouldn't open. {opps} Damn .docx. Oh well. Paper is in and I am D*O*N*E!

Let's recap: Yesterday = miserable.

June - Yesterday + sleep
--------------------------- = summer. Yes! Summer is finally here!

Now, if my philosopher can just get past his last hurdle I'll be able to add him into the equation. The results? BLISS. {for one week anyway... then it all starts again....}

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

this is what finals looks like...

psychiatric help

{photo found here}
I'm not sure if I'm prepared to give psychiatric help for a nickle
or if I need it. The paper is due tomorrow. By five.

Monday, June 8, 2009

{photo by Sarah Rhoads}
I've got a final exam later today.
Trying to think positive little thoughts.
In one week, I'll be through.

Sunday, June 7, 2009

less boredom. more blissdom.

Seen the new Jamba ad campaign?
The "got you a job" one is my favorite.

mmmm....matcha green tea blast!
Evidently there is a traveling banana man too.
I've only read about him online though.