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!

Friday, November 15, 2013

disneyland in instagrams

yes, you read that right.  an instagram post of JUST disneyland photos.  last weekend was a whirlwind of a trip, but i took plenty of photos to show for it.  still catching up on sleep, but here is an instagram summary of disneyland 2013... the second time :)
- the trip was all formulated after two break ups, and jenny being gifted a two night hotel voucher from her travel agent aunt who suggested a girls weekend.  well, a very girls weekend it was.  drove down saturday morning, checked in to our hotel (that wasn't as swanky as advertised) and then walked to the park.
- a battle with will call machines being down, and then we were in to the parks.  we were hoping to get fast passes for radiator springs racers, but they were long gone.  decided to deal with those the next morning.  spent a little bit of time in california adventure.
- toy story mania round 1.  jenny won this one, but not by much!
- i was feeling exceptionally brave, and with a 10 minute wait (probably less than that.  we got swept right in and on the ride) i experienced my first upside down roller coaster.  it freaks me out a little bit still, but i would probably go on it again in the future.  well, at least that one.
- we wandered through to the other side of the park, and the pixar parade was happening. got a quick snap of my main hero before wandering through the rest of the park and eventually onward to downtown disney.
- the idea was for dinner at the rainforest cafe, but it was a hot mess.  stopped by the lego store for a few pictures, and then headed in to disneyland for some pizza port.  mmm pizza.
- for the first time EVER it was appropriate for me to get a happy birthday button from town hall.  so yeah, i was all over that like no other.  jenny got a "i'm celebrating" button, which all the characters saw first before mine.  and awkwardly pointed at her.  haha.
- hidden mickey?  maybe?  randomly seen after a troop of hooligans in front of us for splash mountain pointed it out.  so yeah, i instagrammed it.  like a boss.
- mickey mouse pretzel.  need i say more?
- i'm pretty sure i've seen the "believe" holiday fireworks show more times than anything else done at disneyland.  okay, that may be a slight dramatization...  i feel like it used to be narrated by julie andrews though.  or maybe that's the voice i expect to hear in my head.  she's like the disney version of morgan freeman as far as narrations go.
- monday we wound our way through LA traffic after hotel check out and swung by duff's cake mix... and boy was i excited to FINALLY be able to taste some charm city cakes style goodness.  of course, it's still on my bucket list to make it to the show location in baltimore, but this totally hit the spot.  and makes me want more more more.
- i mean SERIOUSLY?? a rex cake?  wait, a rex that is BOWLING cake??  no way could mr. cake boss come up with something of this caliber.  i saw a screen cap of this on a show or something (i follow duff on twitter... so that may have been where i saw it) and when i saw this cake in the store still... HAD to take a picture.
stay tuned for next week's collection of stretch armstrong pictures, plus some character photos!

Monday, November 11, 2013

schuhfest 2013

the day finally came!  betsy & dillon tied the knot a week ago yesterday and it was a b-e-a-Utiful ceremony.  i walked in the blue goose, and the entire place had "betsy & dillon" written all over it.   so fabulous.  everyone was so welcoming and friendly, it was fantastic.  the ceremony was so personal and memorable.  dillon's grandpa officiated, betsy's grandpa did a tying the knot ceremony, and the bridal party was basically blood relative or "might as well be related" aka jenny.
they were perfection.  betsy had basically been hands off with the whole wedding planning process - working full time, going to beauty school to be a professional pretty skin maker (because i cant figure out how to properly spell estitician to save my life, and spell check can't figure me out) so it has been quite a bit put on by her parents... and boy did they do a fantastic job.  that entire ceremony set up?  her dad made it.  and the cupcake tower, and about a million other things to turn the blue goose in to a lovely wonderland for their big night. and she was grateful, and so happy
betsy and her dad danced to butterfly kisses. yes, it was that perfect. when i heard the song come on, i couldn't think of anything better for her. jenny said it has always been "their song". gah. adorable
the flower girl was a little one that betsy has nannied for over the years, and you can tell she idolizes betsy. at the bridal shower, she sat right next to her the entire time, helped carry presents over, and was so excited to show betsy the pearl necklace she got from hawaii.  so sweet.  i hope my some day flower girl is as precious as she was!
here's the cupcake tower her dad built. awesome, right??
these are the same cupcakes that the tea house had for the bridal shower that jenny threw.  they were so delicious, they cancelled their original cupcake order for the wedding and ordered these.  i could have eaten them for days... SO GOOD.
oh look, i really was there!  i had so much fun at the wedding.  i spent most of the time chatting it up with jenny's mom, probably telling her somethings i shouldn't have... sorry jenny! ;)  i met dillon for the first time that night, and he was exactly has i had envisioned him in my head.  a perfect gentleman, and the perfect match for betsy.  the way she talked about him at the bridal shower, every gift saying "oh dillon will love this... dillon picked this out... i can't wait to show dillon" a smile radiated across her face, and you could see this was like a love never before.  i am so happy for them, and cannot wait to see their lives grow together.  it was a fabulous wedding indeed <3

Friday, November 8, 2013

lodi grape bowl - 2013

the last few years, erika and i have made it a point to make it out to one of the competitions for del oro.  the last two years, it had been the folsom competition we went to, making it super convenient and local.  well, they decided they weren't going to compete at folsom this year, so we had to make plans accordingly.  between my all over the place work schedule & disneyland trip we were left with minimal weekends.  so last saturday we trucked out to lodi for the grape bowl competition.
erika and i reminisced about our lodi going days.  the last time the band competed there was my junior year of high school (fall 2004) and i would have to say it was one of my favorite stadiums to compete at.  maybe it was the memories of setting up "camp" at a park next to the field where there were swings and play equipment.  of course, what high schoolers wouldn't want to play on a playground?  there was the year we competed and then drove home right after because it was the homecoming dance... and i was lucky enough to sit next to my "crush" on the bus ride home... oh geeze.  spirit wars in the stands, the "barn" of a locker room that the guard changed in, delicious gazzolo cooked dinners, you name it.
being that our sisters are one grade apart, as erika and i were, this is the final year for our "sisters" picture.  insert a little tear here.  it has been fun going all these years to see their show each time (this year's show is samurai) but next year will be totally weird without a sibling at del oro at all.  people keep asking my parents what they're going to do... mind you they've been volunteering to make stuff for the program & drive since my freshman year in 2002, and markham was in concert & jazz band for two years before that.  basically a total of  14 years involved with the programs.  crazy, right?
the band did pretty well. they were one of two bands in their division, so that made things easier for them. overall, they placed:
guard: 2nd place
percussion: 1st place
division: 1st place (score of 89.5 while the other group had a 67.5)
they beat the entire division above them's scores.  not too shabby.
i believe it's down to just two more competitions (napa this weekend & fairfield next weekend) and then it's on to winter season.  whoo hoo!
good job del oro.
good job sisters.
good job aileen.

Friday, November 1, 2013

october - instagram lookback

hello again, my not so massive blog following!  it's that time again for a little instagram look back of the month!  october was pretty action packed each and every weekend, that's for sure. and for the first few weeks, november isn't going to be less crazy.  awesome, but not less crazy.  woo hoo birthday month!  and funny thing, this month's instagram post is generally a collection of weekends for each row.  here we go!
- right away, the first weekend kicked off with a portrait session in old sacramento.  a few of my cousins made their way up from the bay area to get some photos with their boys and it made for a fun morning!  the day was followed up with a bridal consult, adventures with jenny, bridesmaid dress trying/ordering and some pre-bridal shower crafting.  all in all, very busy very productive day for sure.
-betsy was celebrated.  jenny rented out a tea house out in auburn, and even though i'm not a tea enthusiast, i can say it was the perfect place for betsy.  classy, elegant and fun.  this was the banner we made the day before, and she asked if she could use it at the wedding.  so sweet.  she was so genuine and stinkin' adorable all day, and i cannot wait to celebrate with her on her wedding day JUST TWO DAYS AWAY!!!
- following the bridal shower, i jammed home, changed out of my tea party best to head on down to gmas house to celebrate october/november birthdays (november because i'm a loner)...  in particular for october, kent who was there on his birthday.  lisa was in town for her friend jenny's wedding and we made the best of it.  lorelai and i got in some good swing time in the back yard, and had some cupcakes.  i didn't have any instagrams from the day i went to hang out in modesto, but it was equally as fun, with some hardcore fabric shopping thrown in.
- the following weekend i crashed at jenny's so i could be halfway to santa cruz to second shoot a wedding that saturday.  while i was out shooting, jenny bought muffins at costco, and sunday morning i pulled this one out, which happened to be smiling at me.  oh so cute... so i ate it.  and it was delish
- we headed out to the city and got our tourist on.  thanks to the bart strike, we had to drive in and endured the crazy traffic just to get through the stupid toll booth.  we parked near the westfield mall area and walked ourselves down to pier 39 in traditional style.  ate lunch at the wipeout place right at the entrance to pier 39 (they had good pizza, fyi) and then wandered around.  the view to alcatraz was pretty clear, which was impressive considering all the fog we were seeing elsewhere.  overall, a pretty worthwhile weekend.
- the next day, it was time for a family portrait session with my bride & groom from last september.  they've added an adorable little girl to their family and of course i couldn't say no!  the weather was fantastic, and the evening went great.  those will show up on the freeze frame blog once i get more sneak peeks going :)
- yeah, school is still chugging along pretty hard.  it was right around midterm time, which meant i had a few different tests going on all within the same week.  chaotic, but so glad for take home tests.  has definitely made the transition back in to school a whole lot easier after two years out of the groove.  yes, i am still enjoying my classes...  i've had to map out the next few semesters for one of my classes, so now i have a clearer vision of what is ahead for me.  i'm sure there will be more on that chaos later.
- i attended my first murder mystery dinner this month... and i was assigned the killer!  i killed jenny on the first round though...  sorry jenny.  i was a little unclear on the rules, but i could have killed a few more people without even knowing it.  it was a whole lot of fun, and i'm so glad melissa has invited me to these fun events.  since i totally slacked at doing a blog post on just that, here are a few photos from the evening.  some swiped from melissa because i didn't get a whole group photo on my camera :(
let's see if i can name what everyone is...
queen of hearts, alice in wonderland, the prince of persia princess, dick tracy, consuelo, walt (breaking bad), van gogh, zombie survivor, wonder woman, minnie mouse, zombie (warm bodies gender swapped) pikmin, green lantern, another something pikmin, sexy gandalf, dr. who... and yeah, don't know what that last one is...
- yep.  it came around to being that time of life again.  it was time for a change, and so i had chris' sister jolee do the hair chopping deed for me.  with a few pinterest photos for inspiration, 8" was chopped and is waiting for me to find the address to mail in to donate.  i will totally be going back to her for all my hair needs... and you should too.  just sayin' you should check her out on facebook & yelp.  she's awesome.  and i totally should have posted the picture from the day she cut my hair, but i don't think it's on my computer right now... with all the stuff coming up these next few weekends, there will be plenty of updated photos.  i'm sure of it.  for now, you can enjoy some fake trick or treating, starring myself & aileen, sneak attack by mushu.  originally dad was just going to fake give her candy, but then we pointed out he was the one with a pocket full of whoppers.  happy day after halloween y'all :)