Saturday, December 27, 2008

Beautiful Memories

Sadly, after my laptop crashed earlier this year, I lost all the pics from last Christmas- except one that I have of Gram with her shawl on. I went back to one of my old computer, and with my new Hello Kitty Flash Drive, (thanks Santa!) I transferred a bunch of photos- here's a walk down memory lane....

This has to be the most bizarre thing dad ever had us do- but he took us to Star Shots in the Mall and made us look like respectable little children...OF THE 90'S! When else would you dress up two kids in a bunch of tule, fan shaped earrings and fry their hair so bad it would grow back that way?

I think I must have been 6 or 7 in this picture- and it was the first time I ever wore makeup (Jon Bennet right??) but it was only to cover up the scratches on my face from all of my tomboy activities.
Time jump- me in NY summer 06.
Also Summer 06- right before I almost got asked to leave the Hello Kitty Store in Times Square.

Whitney and I at Southern Rainbow Camp at Ponderosa Pines- that is an awesome swing chair! The theme was safari- and it was during this time, that it became well known in the IORG world, that I was the one obsessed with pink. This is an OLD photo! This was after a Rainbow event where we were supposed to wear all of one color, mine, obviously, was pink. Kendra and Ronni, chose the less embarassing route- blue. Notice the Rainbow Brite shirt that I truly wish I still had!!!

This was after I was appointed GWA in 2005 (for the 2006 year). The Past Grand Worthy Advisors bring you to one of their hotel rooms and give you gifts and basically lay out how your life is going to change in the next 24 hours...I was crying and hyperventilating so much, I think this is the only picture that came out from that point in the night. On my lap is the gorgeous dress bag my grandie (the outgoing GWA) made for me- it's lined with Mickey Mouse fabric and I still have it!

I can't tell you how many years Whitney and I helped out with Lemonade for the Avo Fest- but we were not only good cooks, but quite nice sign makers too...this is in my portfolio. (sarcasm much?)

Circa 2004- Whitney and I foolin' around takin' pictures...before trucker hats were cool.
One of my favorite projects- well, this was before Straight from the Heart!! In 2004/2005 I collected donations for a woman's shelter- that was a soft bunny!

This was just before Sai-Han, Whitney and I saw Rent- afterwards I pointed out the irony that Rent is about many things, but a lot about poverty, and after leaving the theatre, there were homeless people sleeping on the benches around the theatre...hmm. Those are the guys that SHOULD be in the play.Gram in 2005 methinks.

Gram's fave Chimichanga which she pronounced "Shimmy-shanga." Hilarious!Kisses for Grammy!
Gram and Benny! She was his favorite lap to snuggle on!

Look how thrilled he was! Couldn't grin any bigger!
I have always had my own style- clunky shoes and all!
I believe this was Christmas 2004- this was my first year without her, and though I was expecting to be really depressed, my wonderful friends and family kept me so busy with fun stuff I didn't have much time to think about it- until now.

But you know, being a bit sad at this moment is okay- it's part of the healing process. I do miss Gram, and along with it comes my missing of Dianne Marshall and Vickie Diem. I have been able to look and and sort through my pics of Dianne and Vickie, but until now, I avoided any pictures of Gram. 2008 meant that all my fun pictures of them are now keepsakes.

I am just now able to sort through Grammy's stuff- and I am telling myself it's okay to get rid of some of her knicknacks. It's hard, but I am doing it and I'm glad I'm forcing myself to work up the courage. I have tons more pictures of her that I've luckily stumbled across, but I will save those for some other day.

I am putting together my photo albums- finally. So, if you read this and you have photos of me, please email them?? I need more photos that werent' taken by me, because lord knows they don't come out. haha.

Happy Holidays- and have a great 2009!

Wednesday, December 24, 2008

Review of Love is a Mix Tape and Little Heathens

Yesterday I finished reading "Love is a Mix Tape," and I would recommend it to anyone that remembers making mix tapes for their friends and potential love interests. If the hum of the cassette tape is familiar to you, and you recall rewinding your favorite song a thousand times, or recall wearing bulky and mostly flimsy, headphones before Ear Buds were around, you might enjoy this book. Rob writes about the various mix tapes he had created and the stories behind it. Also, about falling in love with his wife Renee, and what it was like to lose her.

Rob Sheffield is a writer for Rolling Stones magazine and knows a LOT about music- but the fact that many of his tapes include Prince, The Go-Go's and The Cure will tell you what decade his tale takes place in!I'm about halfway though this book- and so far it is a very interesting read. I picked it up at an independent bookstore which is (sob) going out of business today. Farewell Book-Nook! >>sigh<<

Mildred writes about her experience on her Grandparent's farm during the Great Depression. One pair of socks were worn by every kid in the house- when the toe wore through, it was cut down, stitched up and then passed on to the next youngest child. Clothes were worn and remade untill they couldn't be useable, then would be turned into doilies or rags. Sheets were made into bandages when they were no longer useable.

I was a bit enchanted by the thrift of this family- they were very resourceful and knowledgeable about home remedies and self-reliance. At the same time though, a lot of this knowledge didn't pertain to life today. Most of us don't live on a farm, are expected to buy nice clothes (living in cities and suburbs makes us contstantly exposed to the scrutiny of others) and go to the doctor or drug store when we are sick- coming up with home remedies isn't valued as thrifty, but rather, ruthless. In addition, many of us don't have such large families, or have enough property to grow our own fruits and vegetables.

Regardless, it's been a very good read and it reminds me that I need to go outside and plant my cauliflower, broccolli and beets. Yum.

Sunday, December 21, 2008

Cause your Friends Don't Dance, and if They Don't Dance Then They're No Friends of Mine!!!

I have had "Safety Dance," stuck in my head for two days now. Since I have implanted it in your head now, I expect you to rock out! If you want to dance to it, go to and look it up, it'll play from your browser, (that's how I roll!)

So I am very happy to inform you that my project- the crocheted Corporate Zombie from the Creepy Cute Crochet book is DONE! I saw this book while browsing the book store back in spring. At the time, I didn't know how to crochet, much less make a zombie. But I found the zombie, along with some other patterns (they have a skeleton!) that I knew would be perfect for some friends of mine. It was then my quest began.

I spent a few afternoons with my Godmom Jan who showed me the moves- I learned how to crochet, double crochet, double half crochet, and then, crochet in the round. I had the tools I needed! She even gave me TONS of yarn, needles, pattern books and even more pointers.

I started out crafting amigurumi (that's a term for a japanese style of doll making with crochet) and made two octopus (how do you pluralize that?)... ....candy corn, and I'm working on stuff for my baby cousins that will get done eventually (I promise!) Then, I turned to the Creepy Book.

I hit a major roadblock when I had to craft the hair. I didn't have the lace loom that the book called for, so I made do with a piece of plastic that used to be the ruler from my planner. Getting the hair off the plastic was a pain, so I put the doll in the craft bin, unfinished for a month.

Then, Dad got me the lace loom and I was finally motivated to finish the project. Now, mind you, this project was intended for my friend's birthday in OCTOBER. Problem was, the book came late, then I had to figure out how to make the darn thing...and by mid-November I was so irritated by the hair, I gave up. I had originally planned to give him this doll with a bottle of Zombie Zinfandel I found at the market, but I had to just give him the wine sans the doll until now. He will get this doll as a Christmas gift.

The doll, which I have named Ed, is posing with my favorite Zombie flick. Mind you, it's the only Zombie movie I will watch. Nevermind it's a funny movie, but it's the only one that doesn't scare the bejessus out of me.

I picked up this cute little doll at my local yarn shop- it was handmade by someone in my town and it was an impulse buy (along with the yarn below I am crafting into a scarf!)
This scarf is made of a soy/wool blend- it is very soft and I love crafting it. My regret is that I did not think of a more creative ribbing pattern, but I was cold and just wanted to start another scarf. My hometown has been rather cold (not in comparison to some places) but I was cold and unprepared- let the knitting commence!

Of course, here are just a few of the dishclothes I crocheted for gifts. I am not overly happy with how they turned out. But I learned a new stitch (dcfp) and it was jolly.

Now it is getting close to Christmas day- most of my crafting is done- except for Dad's afghan which I am still working on...I will post pictures when it's done. Oy.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Save Handmade!

Save Handmade Toys

There have been many issues with large corporate owned toy manufacturers, who produce in China and recently, lawmakers have been trying to protect consumers from unsafe toys.

Laws are in effect now that are meant to curb the production of unsafe toys that put regulations and mandatory testing on all toys that will be sold in the U.S. While this is great for large corporations, who produce in China and other countries, and can afford the expensive testing of their products, these regulations also pertain to ANY toy manufacturers. So, if you have seen little wooden trains at your farmer's market, or you know of someone who sews dolls for kids to earn extra income- this affects them too.

Please read this blog and sign the petition. Let's not let corporations get the upper hand and allow small businesses to die out!

And while you're at it- Look up stuff at

Sunday, December 14, 2008

AHHH!!!! >>The angels sing<<

Today is my first real day with no responsibility. I woke up thinking "What is there to do today? Homework, nope....studying...nope...cramming for finals? All done!" Yes my friends, life is good.

I have been reading a LOT lately. I just finished a great book by Eric Nuzum- "The Dead Travel Fast." I scoped it out in my "recent arrivals" section of the library- and wasn't too sure if it was going to be interesting- it was about vampires, and that can either be an interesting read or another opportunity to look like I'm well read and return in the next day to the library without even getting past the first chapter. Luckily, it was a great read!

Eric tries to discover why vampires are so popular, and thus goes through the various ways it has permeated into popular culture by taking a tour of Transylvania, meeting up with self-proclaimed "vampires" at Jillian's (Like Applebees) and dissects the ever popular
Dracula by Bram Stoker. It's more of a hilarious sociological dissection of the vampire culture and is full of really interesting facts about Dracula, Bram Stoker, Transylvania and the real Vlad Dracula (Vlad the Impailer) and of course Buffy the Vampire Slayer.

By understanding the vampire craze instead of being sucked into it, I feel a little less dirty when I delve into the ever-popular Twilight Series. Yes, I am on book two. God help me! It finally arrived and I am done with finals so I can allow myself to sit down and read this massive book. I will be on my couch if you need me.This is the book I plan on reading next, if I don't get sucked into reading the third Twilight Series book. I've requested it from the library- we'll see when it gets here!

As for the "Three Cups of Tea" book- I couldn't get into it. Each semester, a book is chosen as the "campus wide read" and this semester they chose this one. It was a lot of detail in the acquisition of building materials, climbing trips and a lot of stuff that seemed too daunting to read through. Perhaps I'm not patient enough, but nearing halfway through the book, I decided to stop reading when the first school hadn't even been built yet. (Which was the focus of the book I thought).

Oh well- I realize it's a very popular book. It is one of the "hot ones" right now, I've seen it everywhere but I can't get into it.

I'm also going to attempt to read David Sedaris' "Holidays on Ice" before Christmas..wish me luck!

Happy holidays everyone!

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

Don't Wait, Procrastinate NOW!

(A really bad picture of me, but it was the only one where they held still long enough to take a picture!)

This time of year is always so crazy. It seems that my Christmas card list grows each year, and I always have more and more difficult classes. I got the tree and decorations up, and yesterday the lights went up outside. I couldn't wait a night longer without seeing a little twinkle-action on my street!

I would normally be in classes now, but since it's finals week I don't have anything to turn in or test on until tomorrow and Thursday. So, what does that mean? I have more time to procrastinate on studying and wrapping up those essays. Needless to say, I've mentally checked out on most of the stuff- I understand the material, so, can we just call it a day and give me my grade??

I know, that is not the way college works. This is why I'm on here, putting off the inevitable.

This weekend I'll be seeing my friend Mely who has been studying in Australia will be in Socal. There is a Holiday Rememberance that Hospice puts on, and then after that I have a Holiday Gift Show to try and scrounge up a few extra bucks before the holidays- anyone need any lipstick? I tried.

I am currently crocheting an afghan for Dad. It took 15 balls of yarn- 5 of each color, Chocolate, Dusty Green and some shade of blue in Vanna's Choice. I would take a picture, but alas, that would require me to locate the camera. So enjoy the pictures of the puggies instead!

Friday, November 21, 2008

Will It Be Merry?

Yesterday I got out of class early, so I had about an hour to kill before I met up with my friend Ken for lunch at Noodle House (aka Noodles & Company, one of my fave places ever!)

I decided to go to Target instead of going to the library to work on projects (I am SO responsible!) and of course, it lead me through the baby section and the toy section to kind of browse for what I plan to buy for the holiday season's Toy and Baby Supply Drive.

I was astounded at the price of things. I know all you parents out there are like "Ya? No surprises here!" I wanted to buy pacifiers, but even the cheapest ones were at least $3-4. I was hoping to buy a couple packs, and I felt so discouraged. Okay, onto baby formula, even Target Brand formula was at least $11! Though I was discouraged that I, as a college student would not be able to afford the big donation I was hoping to make (I was invisioning like, BAGS full of stuff to donate) I wondered how anyone can afford to be parents? But I traveled on.

I get to the toy section, which happened to be next to the seasonal stuff, and I heard that Charlie Brown Christmas song playing. I actually got choked up you guys! Seeing the prices of toys, and hearing the music, I was walking up and down the toy aisles, almost in tears thinking that Christmas wouldn't be coming for a child this year because their parents couldn't afford it. I was trying to find the best value for my dollar, a toy that would spark creativity or really get the child engaged (so NO BRATZ dolls!) but also be a "hot item."

I found the My Little Ponies, which I have NO clue if they're still a wanted toy? I mean, they brought them back so I'm hoping girls like them? Well, the price of MLP's went up this year by a dollar. Not only that, but the toys no longer offer any accessories. Any 80's kid will tell you, you HAD to have a brush for your Pony's mane. If not, there had to be some little plastic tiara or something to make up for it!

I went up and down the aisles but couldn't find anything within my budget, and began to realize that there will be many parents facing this same dilemna, but they are expected to come up with the gifts. My contribution though, is optional.

It was astounding that many of the toys that were cheap, were only part of a playset. To complete the playset, you would at least spend $50. These toy companies really know how to market to children, and also know how to tap in to their parent's wallets. By selling "sets" that "need" more pieces to be complete, a child of course, will want more.

So my question to you, is what are great toys that are a good value, but also are good for the child's developing brain and creativity? I know I wasn't emotionally scarred, infact, I loved my Barbies, but if I can get something that will make a child think and grow, I would be a happy camper.

So what are the hot toys this season, any tips on how to get them cheap? Thanks guys, can you please spread the word to your friends or anyone who has kids so I get more input?

Would crayons and markers be a dissapointment for kid? I used to LOVE to get watercolors, oil pastels, anything...but I was an artsy kid. I didn't have a computer growing I worry that something like this the new generation will not appreciate?

And now, for some cute toys!

As you can see, I definetly have a "girl toy" bias. >>sigh<< oh well! It's just so cute!

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

My Heart is Divided.

DISCLAIMER: I warn you now, what reads below are words from my own heart. If it will upset you to read them, I advise you to hit the "back button," and leave this issue be. I wrote this for another blog and felt the need to post it on here, because my heart aches as I write this, and I wanted to express it. I do not mean to offend or attack, but rather to voice the dissapointment and true sadness I feel at this moment. I realize that many who will read this do not agree with me on this, and I realize I'm putting myself on a limb. I do not wish to create a divide in my friend/family circle- that would truly break my heart. I do though, desire to be honest about my feelings, and hope that you can read the following (if you choose to) with respect and the understanding that I love everyone who reads this and do not wish to create tension.

Read on if you desire, but if you'd rather not hear it, I advise you to wait until I post something more neutral, like pictures of my dogs or something from Disneyland.

Thank you.

Our nation has a rough road ahead- we will see big changes in terms of the economy, civil rights, the war, and foreign policy. There will be disagreements, successes and failures- but I hope we can all unite as a nation to help and work for a better country for everyone.

Apparently, my work is not over. I know my new shoes will have holes worn in them, as I continue to attend rallies, help out at events and try to spread what I believe to be God's message- that we must love one another.

This last election seemed to prove a contradiction- that we are ready for some peoples to be vindicated, and yet for others, there is a long way to travel before people can eradicate hatred from the hearts. It truly breaks my heart, that we see people using the Bible to justify discrimination. I just cannot believe, in the depths of my heart that God would ever really want us to hate someone, or deny them the right to live a happy life with rights equal to mine.

I will never use my vote to condone the creation (or perhaps continuation) of a second class of citizens. In my heart, I don't believe that God would want me to treat anyone as lesser person than myself, and then support it being written into law.

I suppose, there is no arguing with those that believe gay marriage is wrong. Apparently, some have hoped that by passing this proposition, it would make this issue go away, or that it wouldn't be as visible. I have to say, this has done nothing to advance the cause of religious righteousness, instead, it has perpetuated the cause of hatred and creating a power hierarchy that has preserved the ideals of the heterosexual privilege. It has now created the means to continue the oppression that has existed, and condone a hatred that finds a false justification by citing God as their means to do so. We no longer use the Bible to justify slavery or the oppression of women, so I do not feel it is appropriate to continue to use this as justification for the denial of AMERICAN rights (that shouldn't be determined by religious preference.)

In my heart and mind, LOVE, is the greatest emotion we possess. To segregate others that don't fit the mold, into a different expression of that love, so ours can feel more genuine, seems wrong to me. We have seen that segregation of rights, or access to common institutions has NEVER been a way to ensure equality for the masses. The term "separate but equal," has only ensured that two peoples are separate, but we know it has never been equal. Institutions should be the inclusive of all peoples- because dividing them has never been a fair process for those in the minority- ask anyone who had to sit in the back of the bus.

I also do not believe it's fair to think that by giving rights to all people, regardless of our own beliefs, that it somehow would be detrimental to the wellbeing and morality of our children. We teach our children that America is a land of "fairness and justice to all," but yet, as they grow up into adults, will they not see it clearly not the case? Homosexality is not a disease that our children will catch, they are not raised to become so, but homophobia is something that is. Bigotry and intolerance is perpetuated from generation to generation. Eventually, it is passed on for so long that it transforms from an opinion to a fact, and because it seems "factual," it is then passed into law, furthering the falseness of this created reality. Those argue that the Jim Crow laws of the South are not comparable to the discrimination which we are now, through law, imposing on homosexuals, I want to be told HOW they are not comparable. So far, I have heard nothing but opinion on this.

I realize, that my arguments in favor of equality for all fall on deaf ears. I cannot argue with the word of God as it is presented in the Bible, but I can ask for those who claim it as their main defense against gay marriage to look at it once again. Do we take every passage literally? Do we still stone people to death, do we still hold slaves? Do we still make women go to the Red Tent during menstruation? Do we still forbid women from speaking in church? Why have we chosen to disregard some and still hold onto other verses from the Bible? Why- because society has evolved and does not have to take it all literally. Those who follow should Christianity use it as a guide, but not as a word-for-word dictation in terms of social justice. Otherwise, we would still stone people to death for committing adultery.

We selectively use the Bible to enforce social norms to further it into a social reality. This is my theory as to why we now disregard passages in it about slavery, and about women's "place," but at one time, these passages were used to further justify societal injustice. We use the Bible in this manner as a convenience to further our own agendas, and I think this is wrong.

I suppose what I am asking for- is that we use today's wisdom, coupled with the Bible's teachings, to further progress in society and create a more fair and balanced society, not one which excludes a group of people or selectively chooses when to discriminate due to convenience. I wish I could see the Bible teach compassion and tolerance not enforce segregation that masks the true intentions of injustice.

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Happy Halloween!

Happy Halloween Everybody! Just a little Pug Love to brighten your day!

Happy Halloween'

Saturday, October 18, 2008

It's Saturday, and I'm procrastinating

Now that my tummy has settled after dealing with a very gnarly round of "I didn't want to go outside, so I went all over the floor, twice." with the dogs, I am ready to procrastinate on homework.

How did students ever procrastinate before the internet? Tv? Hmm..I guess so.

Now that my lappy is working I thought I'd post some pictures Chris has taken over the last year or so..enjoy.

By the way, we have better pics of Kahlua, but those are coming soon!

This is how Kahlua sleeps....doing the "Frankenstein." haha!

Chris took these two pictures of Bailey and I at the park a few weeks ago...pug love!

I took this one!This was from our latest trip to the Magic Kingdom in September I think

Any resemblance?
We love Balboa Park!
My 2nd Anniversary Gift- but it came with a frame!
Finally, some respect at Disneyland!