Tuesday, December 31, 2013

in 2013...

in 2013 (in no particular order) i...
saw fall out boy & backstreet boys live in concert with my best friend
went back to school
did two bridal shows
made 10 stash bust quilt tops
obtained a new car, and now in the joyous process of paying it off
was officially asked to be a bridesmaid for one of my dearest friends
went to disneyland.  twice.
completed a 30 day blog challenge
had love, then lost it, & overcame it faster than i ever thought i would
went to two costume parties, one being a murder mystery dinner, and a  fantastic girls night out
got all As for the first time in forever
booked 2 weddings for 2014
turned 25, quickly followed by erika turning 25
had my first upside down roller coaster experience
worked 3 different jobs in addition to my normal dance class teaching & photography business-ing (not all 3 at once though)
attended a wedding as a guest
second shot 9 weddings
did two bridal shows, and booked 2 more big ones and 2 small ones for 2014
got some well over due bonding time with the not so wee one, complete with fabric store shopping with lisa
chopped my hair off 8" and donated it
in 2013 i did not....
write as many blog posts as in 2012
crawl up in a hole and die
learn to enjoy seafood
lose any limbs, have any surgeries, or get vastly ill
punch anyone in the face, slash any tires, or any other hurtful revenge tactics
sew as many stash bust quilts as i had hoped
do any extensive traveling past a reno trip or two & disneyland
read as many books as i had hoped
give up

see you all soon in 2014!

Monday, December 30, 2013

weekend wips

and here we are, at the last "weekend wips" of 2013.  how far we've come since the beginning of the month.  the exciting thing is that most of the first list is complete!  the sad side, is that i am not sure how much stuff i will regularly have going at this point to keep these weekly posts going on in to the new year.  since school starts back up next month, my crafting time will be chopped down all over again.  so i better get a move on what i NEED to finish before then.  oy.  and as mentioned last week, i did in fact take my sewing machine in to get some overdue TLC lovin' for the new year.  one week down, hopefully less than two until i get my machine back.  until then, it's working with my mom's machine... which is basically the same as mine.  just not teal.
project a: almost done-er than it was before.  it's down to the "make or break" moment where i put on my big girl panties and work some magic.  that magic involves a lot of basting, stitch in the ditch-ing, and removing the basting.  and then binding.  binding will be a relief when it gets to that point...  because then end will most definitely be in sight.  i might add, for bragging rights, that this project has gotten pretty rave reviews from those that have been lucky enough to see it.  quite possibly even some of my best yet.  fancy fancy.
project b: finally done, delivered and can be revealed.  i took some of my younger brother's old shirts smuggled out of his closet by my mom and turned them in to a t-shirt quilt.  i am quite thrilled with how well it turned out.  stay tuned to see that puppy show up on the blog in the coming week-ish.
project c: done super ahead of schedule.  which is fantastic, because then i can dedicate myself to project a a little bit better.  it turned out fabulous, just like i had hoped, and will make its debut probably mid february.  can't spoil the gift giving before it happens!
project d: oh catvent, you were so fantastic to me, and so much fun.  i loved seeing everyone's blocks pop up on instagram and see how different everyone's take on the project was, simply by the fabric choices.  as to hold you off a little longer until i finish the mini quilt entirely (quilting it myself... eeeps!) here is a lovely self portrait snap of it... and also a clue as to why i generally enlist my sister to model my projects for me.  haha.
other than that, my mom got two pairs of pj pants from me for christmas, it is officially onward to doing some bridal shower planning for amy, and i got a sneak peek of what the updated "toothpaste & orange cat" design will look like.  yep, drawn by my brother as desired, and i cannot wait to see the final product.  so you'll have to wait just as long as i do.
enjoy your last few days of 2013!  can't wait to see what the new year has in store :)

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

merry christmas 2013

merry christmas one and all.
i hope you have a fantastic time with your loved ones from near and far
i'll catch back up with you all soon :)

Monday, December 23, 2013

weekend wips

not quite sure how today is already december 23rd... but that is insane!
this past week has been nice, since' i've only been dealing with work.  and after today, i will be off work from both jobs until next monday.  woo hoo party hardy!  i've found it is quite easy to get a bunch of stuff done with marathon sewing going on.  nearly all my projects are complete at this point (with one exception) but it will be nice to start the new year off with not too much on my plate.  and hopefully a cleaned up sewing machine if i get the chance to take it in today.  it needs a little tlc after all the hard work it has been putting in these past few months... or years, because i have failed to remember to take it in to get serviced.  oops!  but i haven't had any problems with it yet, so that's always a plus! (knock on wood)
project a: almost done!  i had a marathon of block sewing the other night, then border sewing, and then backing & batting panic.  but all those problems have been solved, and i think this one is going to be put away for a bit while i take my machine in.  (if i keep talking about taking my machine in, maybe i'll actually do it)  now that i see it all put together, i am so happy with the outcome, and so glad i had lisa here for a bit to help me out with choosing all the fabrics.  they went together super well... and i'm so antsy to want to post it all over the place, but i can't.  not until march.  boo.  but seriously, it will be worth the wait.  yay yay yay,
project b: the end is in sight.  this will be done soon.  so very soon.  even if i have to keep sewing on christmas eve in my bedroom.  or maybe if i just keep watching friends marathons on nick at night while caffeinated.  that will probably do the trick too.
project c: still waiting.  now that project a is nearly done, and b will be over with soon, and d is generally done on christmas, i can officially get it going.  with a month off from school, i see no problem with that.  especially since i need to have it done before january 31st.
project d: catvent!! oh i am so sad to see the end of this in sight, but it will be so much fun to see finished off.  lisa was asking me what i was planning to do with the final piece, but i am still not sure yet.  if it looks horrid, i'll keep it for myself.  if it looks fantastic, perhaps i'll find someone with a teeny tiny infant to send it to.  it's rather small in size, so it won't be good for much warmth beyond my arm.  and i can't say i'm a wall hanging kind of girl.  but i digress.  i am excited to see these batik cats come together (shown above are cats 21 & 22) and be finished off.  i am so glad i stumbled across this quilt along on pinterest and was able to start it in time.
other projects:  i have a few friends with babies on the way (3 i can think of off the top of my head) that i intend to make a little something for.  i've been scouring ebay for some cute fabric finds, and while i lost out on one that i love love loved (actually two...  sad face) i have found another that i have had my eye on to make something fantastic from.  those will be coming along shortly, as well as figuring out what fabric i have to start making stashbust quilt tops again.  eliminating fabric is so nice for welcoming more fabric in.  like the big bang theory fabric i just bought the other week.  no use for it yet, but i loved it. so it came home with me.  story of my life.
happy monday everyone!

Friday, December 20, 2013

giraffe "gatsby" quilt for baby charley

this is jessica.  jessica and i (along with elyse) grew up together down the road from each other.  alas, we have all gone separate ways (and states... literally) but still keep in touch thanks to the magical land of facebook.  this past summer cica moved off to new york, but not without announcing that she & hubby bryan were expecting their first baby together.  finding out it was a girl was so much fun... and i had a legit reason to go shopping.  i saw this fabric in stores before, but had no reason to use it.  until now.  cica is one of my fellow "tall friends" and these little giraffes were oh so cute and adorable. even more perfect, it wasn't overly pink, which didn't seem very cica to me. she was always a "blue" kind of girl. so this teal was just perfection.
it took me FOREVER to find a quilt pattern i really liked that wouldn't take away from the giraffe print. my grandma gave me a bunch of quilt magazines, and after flipping through them (and pinning 1000 things on pinterest) i found this "gatsby" quilt in the spring 2008 issue of easy quilts. and yes, easy was exactly what it was!
the squares just added in those pops of color to accent the little giraffes and keep the design simple and fun.  i like that the pink is in there as well, just to pop in that extra girly-ness without being too overwhelming.
yep. i still like you a lot, little giraffes. i'm gad i ended up with extra scraps of you for sure. and you'll have a place in my scrappy square quilt. that is a perpetual work in progress... hah.
i did the quilting myself on this one, since my grandma had just had hip surgery. it was quite the experience, but still a better attempt than what i had tried to do myself in the pasrt. still need more practice before going on to bigger, more monstrous quilts. oy. the thought is scary!
token binding photo. and cat fur. because anything that comes from my house gets a little bit of cat fur with it.
look at that quilting! boo yah! okay, it's a little exciting that it didn't turn out horrid. i did a "stitch in the ditch" method... but didn't stay in the ditch the whole time. oops. that will need practice... but it's still better than others and finally, remembering to use more of my little tags. i've gotten better at remembering those too.  i've got a bunch of projects coming up that may require them, so i'll have to locate the rest of them.
it's been so much fun seeing cica become a mommy, and i'm so bummed she is so far away.  but you know what that means?  potential field trip of summer 2014!  it's been bouncing in my head quite a bit, and i'm not sure if i'll fly or if i'll drive like i randomly thought to the other day, but i'm itching to get out there and see more of the country besides three western states.  and if it means seeing this fantastic new family of three as well, by all means... yes please!  i'm sure there will be more on planning that once the new year hits, so stay tuned :)
quilt pattern: "gatsby" from easy quilts spring 2008

Monday, December 16, 2013

weekend wips

and we are officially on to the weeks without school!  thursday was the final day of finals, and after a dentist appointment that morning, one take home final, and then an in class final, and i was home free.  well, after going to work, that is.  but all that effort has paid off.  it looks like i unofficially have straight a's for the semester... something i haven't done in possibly all my college years.  so i'm pretty pumped.  granted, the topics were easy to take in, and generally overlapped between classes.  but i'll still pat myself on the back.  it was a nice way to ease back in to going to school.  but now that is all said and done, it's onward to a month or so of straight up just working and crafting.  and basically working to fund my crafting.  and car payments.  oh glorious car payments!
project a: didn't do as much as i had hoped on this one.  i did get up through strip 13/19 attached on saturday, so that's a plus.  but once i got home from working a shift yesterday afternoon i started with a few other projects before going on to this one, and then got burnt out.  clearing out my dvr was far more my speed than trying to line up strips.  today though, i plan to knock some stuff out.  i just have 6 more strips to go, and then it's onward to creating the "big picture".  wahoo!
project b: this one i worked on post catvent and sucked the energy out of me.  i tied it instead of quilting, then made the binding.  i should have made it a little wider, because folding it over was a little rough, but i think once i start getting it going, it will look nice.  and then, it will be complete.  i guess i officially have 9 days to knock that sucker out.
project c: this one is more of a back burner now, but i know when i get around to doing it, it will go together super smoothly.  i showed jenny the bits of it when she brought me stamps for the bridal shower, and she thinks it is going to look great.  as do i.  because that's how i roll.
project d: catvent!  as you can see above, i am up to 15 cats complete, and today will be number 16.  i got tired of trying to keep them all in their places (herding cats is totally true... even with quilt blocks) so i lined them up and put them in their place for the final part.  now these 3 rows can't escape and i can see which prints i have already used where.  especially when it comes to those orange cats.  which wasn't even intentional to be the most used color.  it just ended up that way, and coordinates so well with the blog title, and resident fat orange cat.  putting all these blocks together makes them look so much better than being stand alone.  which is totally a case and point for you can never have just one cat.  in this case, you need 25.  or in the lap quilt size... 100.  which may become my next project of sorts.  or at least post march projects.
other projects: pj pants: done.  bridal shower invites: done, in the mail box, and on their way to their recipients.  super pumped with how they turned out.  if i get my act together, perhaps i'll blog them.  meh.  i'll probably blog them regardless.  whether i get my act together or not.
happy monday everyone!

Monday, December 9, 2013

weekend wips

BOY did this week start off nice and easy, and then jet off like nobody's business...
after today, just three more days of the semester, and then there will be much rejoicing.  it was all smooth sailing through the semester, assignments due here and there, but last week... MAN it felt like everything was happening at once.  three finals this week, thank goodness two are take home (and already completed) plus a portfolio project.  one semester down, three to go.  but enough about that.  onward to crafty talk!
project a: this one got pushed to the back burner with all of the chaos of school.  i managed to add two more strips to each block on saturday, but that was that.  currently, the blocks are all residing squished between a giant cat encyclopedia and a sewing book from when i took intro to clothing construction.  topped off by a gargantuan chronicles of narnia book that has blocks from the catvent between it.  hopefully this week there will be more progress on that.  well, maybe...
project b: did nothing.  nothing at all.  it sits in a bag waiting to be finished.
project c: yep.  not touched either.
project d: this one i have been all over this week.  making sure i get my "cat" done for the day has been a constant that gives me a little moment to relax and take a break in between each school project i had to do.  the other day i wrote a paper, took a break to sew my cat for the day, and then came back to homework land feeling refocused a bit.  today will be the 9th cat of the project, and i think i will be sad when the quilt-along is complete.  granted, i haven't really connected with people over it, but it has been a fun task to keep myself doing something.  well, not saying that all those other projects haven't kept me busy though.  they certainly have!  and the other thing this project is doing is making my instagram feed look like i have no like.  which right now, feels pretty accurate.
other things that have been completed are pj pants and bridal shower invites are half done.  i bought the supplies to finish them off, and they are waiting for me at the sewing table.  which isn't where i should leave them, because they will either get lost, or licked by a cat... since they're currently in a plastic ziplock.  and our cats are weird.
so here's to surviving finals week... and coming out alive and ready to work on this, that and the other things...

Wednesday, December 4, 2013

november - instagram lookback

oh what a november it was.  busy for sure.  seems like every weekend i was doing something.  at least i like to think i was.  so here are a few of the non-disneyland highlights from the month.
- the day erika and i went to lodi for our sister's band competition (other photos from that day are here) and took a pretty dang good lookin' photo of us.  alas, our final photo at age 24... because as of monday, we are both 25 now.  so old, i know.
- betsy got married!  (more of those photos here) when i saw this card at the store, i knew it had to be the one... since dillon is a pilot and all.  it was fantastic to get to see their big day happen finally, and yet again, i wish them all the best for their lives together <3
- okay, so this cracks me up SO MUCH.  i drove out to natomas to have one of my friend's little sisters help me out with a homework assignment, and a few cars in front of me was this... a giant stuffed cheetah sticking out of the window all nonchalant like nothing was up.  i was dying inside from how hilarious it was, until i passed the car and it was creepily filled with stuffed animals all over the place.  hilarious, but still creepy.
- post disneyland, post birthday, i consumed my final cupcake from duff's cake mix.  so sad.  but at the same time, i'm afraid if i lived closer i would be there ALL the time and be a million times my size.  so yes, next time i am in los angeles, i will be hitting up duff's cake mix again.  now that i know what street it is off of, and the entire area is full of horrific left turn yields.
- started getting crafty again (finally) with the impending holidays, thus the weekend wips posts resurrected as well.  it has been nice to have a mental break from homework by doing something crafty and for a purpose other than just do sew something.  but one project turned in to i think five or six now... oops.  good thing i like the ability to pick and choose what i want to work on.  and have it not be homework related.
- the thursday after my birthday, ben came in to my room at the community center and said "yaya!  did you tell emily happy birthday?" so she made me a card.  and then the next week another.  and then the thursday before thanksgiving, she gave me this.  which is a drawing of me, with four crowns on.  i asked her about the crowns and i was told it was because she didn't have one big one.  so here i am, a princess with all my tiaras.  be jealous.
- i had a bridal consultation in lodi with a friend of lisa's and once i returned home, changed clothes and sat down for two seconds, my dad came in asking if i wanted to go see ender's game.  i knew nothing about the movie going in to it, besides it was about a game in space, had harrison ford in it, and was in my dad's top 5 of  all time favorite books.  so i went for it, and enjoyed it.  though i couldn't help but laugh when good ol' rico from the hannah montana days shows up as the mean kid.  RICOOOOOOOO!
- the day before thanksgiving, i "ditched" class after i got off work (aka was told there wouldn't be any in class assignments that day) and ran a bunch of errands for another one of my classes.  one of those stops included going to sac state to get a copy of my unofficial transcripts.  i was so sad that i didn't have time to go in to kadema hall and get a whiff of the darkroom.  i miss those chemical smells.  man, that sounds really bad.  i miss developing film!
- in all my craftiness & black friday failed sales shopping (beverley's didn't have much of anything on sale... boo) i cut out a bunch of projects, filled in some missing fabric i ran short on for another, and added 11 blocks to my scrappy square quilt.  someday that quilt will get begun.  maybe after these next few months of bridal & baby shower gifting.  which is just going to add more new fabrics in to the bunch.
as promised, here are the ride photos from the disneyland trip with jenny... just to drag it out one more post in length.  i can assure you my expressions are real on california screamin, radiator springs racers & splash mountain, but very much faked on space mountain.  jenny on the other hand, i think they're all faked except for splash mountain.

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

weekend wips

everything has been bumped back by a day or so, since yesterday i glorified erika with her own birthday post... but that is a-okay to me.  makes the "weekend" of wips just one day longer.  but in reality, i did a whole lot last week anyways, an extra day just makes me look like a super over achiever.  except i don't get a cape for that.
project a: this is the "big one" right now.  but it is actually going a lot smoother than anticipated.  every day or so after getting all my strips chopped up last monday, i began the scary voyage of sewing them together in numerical order.  minus a few size measurements when i cut out the templates, everything has been easy peasy.  sew, iron, squish between books to keep the seams flat, repeat.  all.  week.  long.  i think i got up to piece 9 out of 19 attached.  there is one fabric involved that i wasn't quite sold on, but lisa pushed me to it... and it isn't standing out as sorely as i expected it to... so that's a plus.  black friday i ran out and thought i was going to have a panic attack from not being able to find the ONE fabric i ran out of... but my mom located it behind the cut counter.  i may have shown a little excessive excitement about that, and the rude joann's lady may of had her snobby opinions about it... but it made my life a whole lot easier.
project b: this one was super easy, until it came to the back.  i didn't know what i was going to do with it for awhile, until i pulled some fabric yardage out of my box that worked great.  added a little red flannel edging to it, and it was good to go.  so now that sits in a bag, waiting to be finished off and binding added.  then, it's to be wrapped and put under the non-existent christmas tree.  whoop!
project c: this was another "was waiting for black friday" bust... i waited out, planning to go to beverley's for the fabic to be on sale... but it wasn't.  so i bit the bullet and paid full price - which is something i HATE to do...  i cut my pieces out and started hemming strips the other night.  so now it sits, and waits for me to rotate it in to my "i feel like working on this now" mindset.  this one you'll have to wait until february to see :)
project d: this one i can talk about.  i pinned this quilt the other day, thinking it was just a random quilt pattern... but NO.  it was a quilt-a-long for the month of december!  was i excited?  yes!  each day a different cat block is posted, and the block are small and simple.  awesome right?  my grandma gave me a box of batik fabric scraps from graduation quilts she made for me, my siblings & my cousins, so i thought those would be the perfect start.  plus, i bought 3 yards of gray fabric for a table cloth at my last bridal show that i ended up finding a real table cloth for... so now that is being put to use.  sunday was my first block, and after a million ear issues with the block, i finally got my brain functioning and it turned out super cute.  i can't wait to finish the entire mini quilt, since i intend to actually quilt it myself as well.  no better way to practice than starting small, right?  i am almost tempted to buy the pattern, just so i can also have the 100 block lap quilt size too...  eeps!  for the blog link for the "introduction" post of the catvent quilt along, click here
other things to be done include some pj pants and planing of two baby quilts.  yippee for baby quilts!  i have some great ideas for one... just need to get better at my ebay watching. 

Monday, December 2, 2013

happy birthday, bestest friend

today is the day that i've spent the last 28 days waiting for.
the day my bff turns the big 25.
this year also marked 10 years since we met.
10 years of chaos, of laughter of of memories
10 years of drama, of good times and bad
10 years of mistakes, of anger and forgiveness
10 years of inside jokes, of happiness and of joy
10 years of photographs, of awkward moments and days we'll never forget
10 years of having a girl i can call my best friend, the other half of double trouble, and the erkia to my emlee.
happy birthday, friend.
i hope it is the kick off of a fantastic year to come :)
lylas, always
and just for laughs, i found this cheesy old video on my hard drive when looking for photos. of course, it then had to be uploaded to youtube for all future generations to see ;)

Friday, November 29, 2013

i'm thankful for: a lot of things

i couldn't exactly think of a photo to use, so this is what we're going with.  i couldn't think of a solid "final thanks" day topic, so here we go with a mixture of everything.  i guess i'll just list off a bunch of randomness in the world that i'm thankful for.  whether it is physically existing, feelings, nonsense and everything in between.
i'm thankful for
oreo sundaes
external hard drives
late night taco bell drive thru
my students
being able to have a job every day since i was 16
people who don't pick up their pennies
text messaging
personal strengths, both physical & emotional
my sewing machine
hobbies & talents
seat belts
online shopping
mexican food
the ability to be constantly learning new things
hooded sweatshirts
a good book
social networking
and the list can go on and on if i sat here long enough.
i'm thankful for all the big things in my life (teachers, friends & family) but just as important are those little everyday things that sometimes go forgotten.  somethings you don't realize until something bad has happened, while other things remind you of all the good times.  i am thankful for so much in my life, but didn't even think about all the very little things until this week.  i hope that we all (myself included) can begin to remember these things throughout the year, and not just in the month of november when the holiday season begins.  so here's to a happy rest of 2013 to you all, and time to prepare for 2014... yikes.  already??

Thursday, November 28, 2013

i'm thankful for: family

yep, i did totally make sure this one fell on thanksgiving day. basically, isn't it part of the idea of the whole day?  so yes, today i am proclaiming to the world my thankfulness for the family i spend day in and day out living with.  yes, i also hereby state that YES i am still living at home.  so there.
i am thankful for my parents, who have supported me through all the years of schooling, financially supporting me for college round one and supporting my decision to go back for college 2.0 when the idea was brought forth.  they drove me to countless sports events, band practices, competitions, dance classes, piano lessons and more.  they "forced" me to stick with things when my friends backed out, teaching me that when i made a commitment to something, i needed to follow through with it (insert 8th grade musical the music man here) and if i wanted something badly enough (want... not need) i needed to save up for it myself and learn the value of a dollar (as well as the importance of an emergency savings account).  i've learned responsibility through them, by ways of car payments and keeping up with events and commitments.  i've luckily been able to save money by still remaining at home, and that one day when i am finally able to get out on my own, i know i will be ready thanks to the examples and teachings i've had each and every day.
i'm thankful for friday night joann's trips with my mom, two wppi vegas trips with my dad & numerous photography conversations (i still don't have a darkroom though....), and countless lunch trips out with the two of them before i went back to school.
i'm also thankful for sunday afternoons of dvr clearing, where we all (siblings included) watch shows together.  the big bang theory is a house hold staple, so yes, i'm thankful for that too.
and cats... as clearly show in our most recent family photo... from 2009...  i think we need to deal with updating that soon.
basically, my goal was to find the most recent "portrait" of just me with each of my siblings... and while aileen & joshua are more recent... i think this is possibly THE last one before joshua came to be.  well, at least that i could find in the one book i looked through.
markham has always been the oldest, and i admire the talents he has discovered over the years through his drawing & animation practices.  HOPEFULLY i can will sway him to finally draw me a blog header while he is home on break next month... obviously so i can show off his talents here and not for my own visually appealing gains.  then i can clearly say i was one of his clients before he hit it big...  because when he gets his job at pixar, i know he will sneak me for behind the scenes of toy story 47, and will introduce me to his good friend tim allen.  wishful thinking, but hey, anything can happen.
joshua, as i will tell anyone, i didn't want... and he also chipped my front tooth... and he ruined my perfect life of being the youngest, spoiled child (later to be totally ruined by sibling number 4) anyways, he has come to be an entertaining individual to have around, and is always fun to joke around with.  for all the ruining of my life he did as an infant, i am thankful for the younger brother that i have ended up with.  i can't wait to see where his staging career takes him over the years, and i would really appreciate it if he got a job on tour with fall out boy.  seriously kid... make it happen.  i need some meet & greet hook ups!
aileen is finally useful.  i will be the first to admit that she and i didn't really mesh for awhile a few years ago.  but now that we wear the same size shirts, i like her a lot more.  she's finally come to terms with being my life size barbie doll that i can dress up and take pictures of (seriously... life size barbie was NEVER as tall or the same size clothes as i was.  ugh)  our latest self entertainment comes in the form of creating stupid bitstrips comings of the two of us, doing nearly impossible things... maybe a blog post on those later... but now that she is driving(ish), applying for college and what not, i am glad for the relationship we have begun to form.  although, with her desire for science... i don't know how useful she will be in my future.  she better pull something amazing.
granted, my siblings and i aren't the more "serious" bunch, i am thankful for each of them in their own way.  i know that i am basically stuck with them for quite some time now, so i guess i will stop trying to pass off as being adopted.  apparently aileen looks more like me than i think she should.  i'm glad for the moments we've shared, both good and bad, and guess i will appreciate them.  but this is about all the mushy appreciation i can handle.  it's starting to get too sappy up in here.
and if you didn't understand earlier...
i am also thankful for cats.  even grumpy gills elroy & fatty mc fatterson mushu.
and maybe sir stinks a lot buzz cat.
joshua's cat smells like feet though.  watch out.

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

i'm thankful for: friends

of course, what girl isn't thankful for the friends in her life? these three are my closest friends, and they know everything about me, and vice versa.  i couldn't ask for a better "posse" to call my own, each of them unique and fantastic in their own ways.
erika: my best of the best, and the girl that i just couldn't get rid of and can't live without.  known for our double trouble ways in high school, and 10 years later we are still staying strong.  we are pretty opposite in some ways, but so much the same in others.  while i was going through my old hard drives for these thanksgiving posts, i found so many photos of the two of us from over the years that i had completely forgotten about.  i am sad for the year or so we missed out on, but even more grateful for the time we've had since.  i'm grateful i was able to stand by her side as her maid of honor last summer & see our childhood dreams of falling in love come true.  i seriously cannot imagine what i would do without her in my life at this point, she truly is like a sister to me.
jenny:  hard to believe we hated each other all those years ago.  yeah, that will be a story i tell at her wedding for sure! oh man.  we survived some pretty crazy classes (hey there, yearbook!) and came out on top.  high school chaos, college chaos, and everything in between, we've managed to keep on truckin' and going on.  though i do resent her for being in the bay area (kidding! mostly...), movie nights, oreo sundaes & girly gossip at denny's becomes that much more special.  the second half of 2013 was a little brutal on the both of us, but it became that much easier to have a friend at the same stage to lean on and pull each other out of our funk.
amy: oh where to begin.  amy was one of my first friends that i made when i moved in middle school, and has stayed constant the whole time.  she is SUCH an amazingly positive person that never has a mean word to say about anyone... it is quite incredible.  she's so dedicated to her goals and works hard to get what she wants.  i am completely honored that after all these years (nearly 15.  wow) that i get to stand by her side as a bridesmaid & support her marrying the man of her dreams.  and yeah, he is a pretty awesome guy for sure :)
i'm at that point in life where i've gotten to watch friends from all ages of my life fall in love, get married, have babies and start a family.  while that hasn't happen completely yet for me, i'm so thankful for the modes of communication that are around to keep in touch.  yeah, this is my "thankful for facebook" shout out, because without it i wouldn't be able to keep up with all my friends near and far.  some friends i haven't seen for years, some i saw just last week, but thanks to modern technology and ability to connect instantly, i feel like they've always been around.  and of course, it also makes me miss them and plan trips to go cross country next summer to see them for the first time in what feels like forever :)  so facebook, thank you for being there.  without you, i would be stuck dealing with the new myspace layout.  and that would be horrendous!

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

i'm thankful for: teachers

granted, those over achievers have been posting things they've been thankful for all month long on facebook, but i know if i was to try and go for an entire month i would hit the point of "i'm thankful for... uh... nail polish?"  anyways, i decided to whittle it down to just a week (well, 4 days) so here we go!
i am quite thankful for all the teachers i have had throughout my life.  i have overall had some pretty decent teachers, a horrid few, and then there is the handful of teachers i will always ALWAYS remember and be grateful for.  through all my school years, i've had at least one at each school that has left an impact on me in various ways, so here we go, a shout out to them.
mrs. blake will ALWAYS be the teacher i regard as my favorite.  markham had her for 2nd grade at dry creek, and then i was lucky enough to end up in her 2nd grade class as well.  and then 3rd, 4th and 5th until she retired (clearly because we were moving).  she truly made the learning environment fun and very hands on.  we took imaginary trips to european countries, had medieval feasts in the classroom, and took more field trips than i can even remember.  she had a love for travel, and brought that in to the classroom through finding us pen pals, and we had a "valentino" beanie baby that we would send to her different friends around the world and he would go on adventures.  in later years, she admitted she probably wasn't the "best" teacher we could have had, but we all definitely enjoyed our time.  she has come out for visits a few times since, and it has been great to catch up with her.  i still have yet to write to her (yes, in a handwritten card.  we still do that people!) and fill her in about my decision to become a teacher.  fun fact:  it's mostly because of her and her love for the madeline books that i have since fallen in love with the name, and intend to name my future daughter after the smallest little girl in the two straight lines, as a homage to my favorite teacher.  even though i'm now 25, i don't think i will ever get used to calling her karen though!
mr. muth was my 7th grade math/science/p.e. teacher at franklin, and kept things interesting.  we were his first class he had at the school, and i will always remember his little mermaid lunchbox.  an admitted disney enthusiast, we had quite a few hands on experiences in his class.  oh, and "life lessons" for sure.  i learned how to count to 10 in german that year, dissected a pig, and learned that "pain is just weakness leaving the body"... as well as anything that was not enjoyable "builds character."  the poor guy had to deal with the year of the josh, with about 5 or 6 between the two 7th grade classes.  oy.  mr. muth went on to having josh (my brother) and aileen in his class as well, which i think added to aileen's enjoyment to pursue a science career after high school.
rebecca gregg & randy snook  were two of my college professors at sierra in the photo department, and it was through their classes that i discovered that photography was what i really wanted to do.  in particular, randy taught the documentary class, which was one of my top photo classes at both sierra & sac state.  rebecca taught the studio photography classes, where i learned a lot about lighting, posing & eventually creating my own projects that would later lead to my ballerina project at sac state, and heading in to running my own business.  i ran in to rebecca last year at the gold county fair, and was super excited to tell her about how things have been going.  i'm on campus all the time, i should seriously just stop by and say hi sometime.  the passion rebecca has for her students reminded me so much of how mrs. blake cared about each and every one of us over the years.
sharmon goff was a great teacher to have at sac state, and i was able to say i was a "second generation" student of hers.  my dad had sharmon when he was at sac state in the 80s getting a minor in photography, and still remembered some of the projects he worked on.  sharmon taught the studio and documentary classes at CSUS, and both were yet again, my stronger suits.  my ballerina project fell under the senior portfolio class that i had with doug dertinger who totally made some of the classes rather comedic.  some days, it was like having a muppet run rampant in the room... but as senior level college students, some days you just need this.
joanna mcvay has been my dance teacher since,  well... forever.  she has been a consistent factor in my life since i was age three, and has created an environment of a second family. in the past 20 years i've been with kids r it, i've only been away from a recital for one year and it was rather strange.  joanna trusted me enough to give me my first job, and has since supported me through everything school and business wise.  had i not had a teacher like joanna, i don't think i would have continued through as long as i have after graduating from high school.  her studio is also not discriminatory, which has exposed some of her students to others with varying disabilities and capabilities and still treated them like they were one of the same.  some of my favorite people to be around are my coworkers, and things such as recital and staff meetings are more like a mini family reunion than a chore.  i know someday, when i finally move on to bigger things, she will still be supporting me the entire way, as she has done with other students and staff.

Monday, November 25, 2013

weekend wips

let's see if i can make a successful comeback with these types of posts.
my last "weekend wips" post was back in april 2012, pre-erika wedding.  and now i'll try and bring it back pre-holiday/weddings/babies to see what comes from it.
clearly this is just all the start of the crafting that is intended to happen between now and march of 2014, so most are just idea formulations.  this photo is the fabric that i purchased back in october with lisa, and has now been pre-washed and started to be chopped.  the pattern is a little confusing, seeing as there are no visuals really, or written direction.  so i guess i get to free for all it and hope that it turns out well.  eeps.  fingers crossed, right?  oh, and i feel like it is okay to post this because 1. i'm not sure if anyone really reads these that they are going to and 2. if my friends don't know what they are getting for their upcoming weddings by this point after seeing 2 other friends get married, they've been living under a rock.
the other project that is actually in process right now is currently on hold until i hit up joann's this upcoming friday a la black friday sale.  i may have nearly enough for the backing, but all that remains is buying some batting & binding.  that one pieced together rather smoothly (amazing how well big blocks happen) and so i'm sure (fingers crossed) the rest of it will sail together easily so i can focus on the wedding beast and other holiday gifts.
along side my crafting i've started to watch 30 rock on netflix to add some interest to the event of sitting on the floor and cutting out fabric.  that has now become my new old show to be power watching (much like i did with friends, as well as big bang theory & how i met your mother to get up to date on those) as i craft through these next few months.  can't wait until the semester is over, simply to not feel like i have competing things i need to do.  oy!  happy monday everyone.

Friday, November 22, 2013

disneyland - november 2013

oh right... i mentioned last post that i would post all the other pictures "next week"...  well, i intended to do this much sooner than now, but it is still within the week, right?  yeah, well here goes!
we drove down saturday morning, leaving san leandro around 6:45am, so we got to our hotel and checked in around 2 something, and then were in the parks by 3.  we headed straight for cars land, hoping for a fast pass to radiator springs, but they were all out for the day.  first ride we hit up was the mater's tractor pull.  cutest little short wait ride in the park for sure.  and it's actually fun (unlike the tire ride... erika and i found that one dull back in may)
hit up toy story mania, because that ride is awesome.  jenny beat me, but not by much!  so hah. here is my ever present feat of this trip.  never ever have i gone on an upside down roller coaster, and leading up to this trip i told myself "i'm 25 now... let's get this over with" and that, plus a 10 minute (probably less) ride wait, and that can now be crossed off my bucket list.  it freaked me out a bit, but i survived.  and i may consider doing it again.  but nothing more than this one loop as of right now.  anything more is a little too intense to even begin to think about!
a few years back (like not long after graduating high school) i bought this mickey mouse sweatshirt from hot topic.  turns out, at some point after that jenny bought the same one not knowing i had it.  well, they had to make an appearance on this trip, so after a failed attempt to eat at the rainforest cafe, we donned our sweatshirts and headed in to disneyland for the remainder of the evening.
this blog post brought to you by the number "5"
a jaunt back to our hotel, and then we settled in for the night.  alarms went off at 9 am, and then it was back to the fun.  ran and got our fast passes for radiator springs, and hit up some character spots in california adventure.  unintentionally, quite a few characters.  it was like we found there secret hiding place.
so obviously, i had to make sure i got this picture... and i did. hazah!
if i didn't admit to myself about how i buy mickey ears and then never wear them again, i probably would have bought these as my souvenir this trip. but i resisted the urge, telling myself about my super awesome toy story mickey ears that i already have waiting for me at home. and it worked. so he headed over to hollywood area to look for a character or two... and KABLAM we found a bunch. probably could have spent hours there just rotating through random character appearances. the onlyone we didn't get that was out while we were there were the mary poppins penguins. we weren't quick enough for them.
so i guess we were surfing?? i clearly didn't get the memo on that one
jenny was trying to speak raccoon, but i had to translate for her. when it was finally understood that he was asking what she was celebrating, she got the good ol' thumbs up from mr. raccoon
as far as getting to do all the rides we wanted to, we got lucky and got everything in over the course of a day and a half... of course with the exception of thunder mountain railway, which is STILL closed.  grrr.  hopefully all the renovations means it will be up and running again next time i'm there.  i miss that rickety roller coaster.  as far as all the other "taken on the ride" photos, those are all on my phone.  perhaps i will post them in the instagram post for november, just so they get seen in all their entertaining glory.  and so disneyland can be stretched out for just one more post.  :)
so this was one non-disneyland stop i made sure had to happen.  and was basically my only souvenir purchase.  and a delicious souvenir it was.  i LOVE the show ace of cakes (so sad it no longer airs) and when duff started a west coast bakery plus this little cake mix studio, i knew i wanted to go.  originally i wanted to do the whole sit down and decorate your own cupcakes shabang, but with not knowing what traffic was going to be like on the way home, bought 8 cupcakes (i shared with my family, don't you worry) and jenny bought a whoopie pie.  they were delicious, and made a fantastic week of desserts for me.
the trip was a nice break from reality, and well worth the get away.  it now tops the list as my longest drive ever...  boy am i glad i have my rav4 now.  my corolla would never have made it!  alas, now it is still back to the continued reality of school, work, and more work.  and crafting!  at least there is a little bit of goodness in there.  gotta get ready for these holidays that are sneaking up on us.  ack!