Thursday, July 19

Mobile Post

Hey look, there's an app for blogger...

Well, to make this brief: I got married, husband is in Afghanistan, I'm trying out wordpress at, I moved to a new city in Colorado, my depression is much better due to a therapist and diet, I had to buy smaller jeans today, and I'm going back to school as a culinary arts student. Also, I'm not sure if I can read everyone else's blogs from this app, so comment if you see this so I make sure to come visit you.

That is all...

Thursday, October 27


Life is settling down for me with the negative things, and picking up with the positive things! That's a nice shift. (-: My super awesome boyfriend Greg has been encouraging me to embrace my artsy crafty side after noticing how excited I get about such things. Great idea! I decided to try out a lot of DIY (Do It Yourself) I see online, and also do lots of homemade Christmas gifts. Today I did my first one: guitar pick flowers! I got my inspiration from this blog:

Aren't those pretty? I changed a few things for mine. The whole project was kind of in honor of Greg because he's a fantastic guitarist, so I picked blue picks since that's his favorite color too.

These are the picks I used. I don't know anything about them, I just picked the cheap blue ones at the store! These are 1mm, Dunlop, Tortex, and blue. That is the extent of my knowledge about them. Oh, and they cost $5 for a dozen. They had a sort of powdery finish instead of shiny, but more about that later.

Here's the cast & crew! I forgot the sparkly middle bead in this picture though. It got to star in the finished project though so hopefully no jealousy there. First step is to place the picks in a five petal flower shape. Do it right side up though, unlike me in the picture.

Use painters tape if you have it, and scotch tape if you don't, to tape the picks in place. This is just so you can turn it over and hold them in place while you glue the button on, so as long as it'll hold them for a few minutes you're okay. Meanwhile...

Paint five more petals with your contrast color, if you're going to use two layers like I did. I used a metalic copper for mine, and did three coats. You can see how sparsely it went on with one coat; lots of thin coats completely dried inbetween will give you a hard smooth finish. If you glob it on you'll get bubbles and wrinkles! Thin coats dry within a minute or two.

Pick up your flower by the tape and flip it over carefully. Use hot glue to attach a button to the back. The reason I suggest a button is so that if you want to make it into a bouquet or something else, you can thread the button with a thin wire so it attaches easily. Make sure you thread it before you glue the bead on! In my case I attached it to the hair clip with hot glue so I didn't need wire. Look how pretty the other petals are after a few coats!

Let the glue dry, then turn your flower over and remove the tape. Because my picks had a powdery finish, the tape left marks. Oh no! I fond out that if I applied a very scant amount of lotion evenly and wiped it off well, the picks resumed their original color and it got rid of the powdery weirdness and left a very nice matte look. If you know more about picks than I do and pick out shiny picks in the first place, this step would not be necessary. It's possible that painters tape would not have left marks either, I'm not sure! But now you know how to fix that...

Glue your pretty bead in the middle. This hides the button and adds interest. You could also try a pompom, a cool button so it showed more than the one underneath, or whatever strikes your fancy.

Turn your flower over to the back and glue on your accent petals. You could also use the same color petals w/o painting them, or just do a single layer and skip this step altogether. In the blog I linked, she put the petals directly behind the originals instead of alternating. See what you like best!

Glue the alligator clip to the back. Be generous with the glue here, as the clip will not lie flat. Also make sure you position it so that the tabs you push to open are over one of the base petals not the accent petals; it'll be stronger. To operate the clip, you'll be pushing on the back tab of the clip and on the petal itself. It works out pretty well!

The finished project! You can also use these flowers to make a bouquet, as napkin rings, as boutteniers (spell check doesn't even recognize that, sorry..), magnets for your fridge, etc etc! Enjoy being crafty. <3

Wednesday, January 5

Definite Progress

I'm not sure which purchase I was more excited about yesterday - a vacuum cleaner for $10 or a six-muffin tin which will fit in my toaster oven for $1.50. Haha! I'm becoming so... domestic. I have the numbers written down for someone selling a washer and dryer that my aunt might want to buy for the house, and for a swiffer wet jet for $15 for me. Major items I'll still be wanting are couches, a dining set, eventually another bed for the spare room, a bicycle, cookware, and lots of cleaning supplies. At some point my aunt and uncle will put in a washer and dryer, fridge, and oven. But I can do laundry at home, I have a toaster oven, and I have a mini fridge I'd bring, so those aren't super essentials initially for me.

The BEST news is that I get to begin subbing this week! Remember how I was thinking it'd be weeks and didn't know what to do with myself? Yeah. I was in the process of getting some paperwork together to take to the sub lady, and the principal from the school where I student taught said she hoped the lady could get me set up quickly because she has a job for me on Thursday. She offered to call the lady and did, and I have an appointment at 9:00 today to get processed. After that I should be good to go, and I'll be working all day Thursday! Whew, what a blessing. Thank you, Pa, for having it under control even when I didn't. So I think that'll be $70 minus taxes this week, and hopefully I can get lots of other work. I'm so thankful for this! I'll also be house-sitting overnight for someone on Friday night, so that'll be a little pocket change.

I swept the floors in the three main common areas at the rental, and did some vacuuming with my cute little semi-useless vac. It's a great machine for a dorm room, or I'll keep it upstairs for little messes when I don't want to lug the big one up the stairs, but for the common area downstairs I need to take my new (ha) big boy to it. So today I want to finish sweeping, and vacuum everything. I'd like to mop also but the water at the house isn't turned on yet and I think it's smarter to just wait than to try to bring water over in a bucket or something. I'd turn it on if I knew how... gotta learn these things if it's going to be my house! I bet it's in the utility room somewhere, right?

I have a hot date tonight, so the basic sequence of my day will hopefully be a little cleaning --> two hours of processing for subbing --> drop of car to fix alignment and make sure I didn't bugger anything else up --> more cleaning --> pick up car --> hot date. If it's warm today and I have time between picking up the car and my hot date, I'd like to clean my car a bit. I got a car wash (which I rarely go pay for) and the very next day I drove all day in snowy sludge, went off road, and otherwise goofed her up. :( I feel bad, and also she looks terrible, so I want to AT LEAST hose her off, if not break out my awesome car cleaning kit and go to town.

{it's already 30F out, and it's only 5:49... good sign!}

I'm going to get started on my day, but I leave you with this little piece of delight from the newest blog I'm following, Good ol' Mitch. Check out his blog for more nerdiness.

I also leave you with one of my favorite songs from a musical, especially when discussing meds with people...

"Who's Crazy/My Psychopharacologist and I, from Next to Normal"

"My psychopharmachologist and I
It's like an odd romance
Intense, and very intimate
We do our dance..

My psychopharamcologist and I
It's like a lover's game
He knows my every secret
I know his... name!"

Tuesday, January 4

On Forethought and Generosity

I should be in bed right now but I'm so moved by the generosity of those who love me I just have to blog about it first.

To start with, I will be moving out soon. My aunt and uncle own a house which they want to fix up a bit more so it can be rented out, but there's a bit of a thievery problem in the neighborhood so as long as it's clearly unoccupied, people keep coming in and stealing things (even the skylight! Now that's low... or high...). My aunt and uncle have been very much wanting someone to live there, so it can be fixed up un-interrupted. I of course have been looking for a place to live, cheaply, and in their infinite generosity they offered to let me stay, free of charge. In exchange I will be a presence so no one tries to take things [obviously we're also bumping up the security of the property], and I will help with cleaning and renovations. It is really a nice little 3br/2bath house; not huge but much bigger than I require right now and definitely bigger than the cute shoebox I had been looking at. I am so excited about moving in; I already took Bagheera over with me to check it out and begin a little cleaning. Bagheera thinks it's fascinating and I don't know how many times I swiped cobwebs off his ebony snout as he rooted through the crooks and crannies. I think he approves!

Since I'm going to have a place of my own, I've been thinking a lot about what I'll need for this house. I'll get to claim and bring with me my furniture from home; bed, dressers, desk, hope chest, office chair. I knew I had some cookware and dining pieces from college, but they of course are mismatched and of cheapest quality. Mom and I ran a few errands today, and I took back a sweater that was too large for me which I'd received for Christmas. The woman told me that I could exchange it for any one item of the same original ticket price; since my gift-giver had purchased the sweater on a good sale, that was a pretty notable price! I decided to check out the housewares, and came away with a fantastic Black & Decker toaster oven, free for me in exchange for a sweater I wouldn't have worn. Score!

I'd also looked at silverware sets and dining sets, but they weren't quite the right price for the exchange so I left them there, sad that I'd have to make do with my mismatched cheap-o pieces from college until I start earning money. I knew I had a few things in my hope chest, but I wasn't sure what. Once I got home, I decided to do a thorough inventory.

... wow.

I had so much more in there than I remembered. I started receiving these items when I was no older than 12, and haven't added anything to it for at least the past 4 years or more. Inside, I found so many treasures! When they were given to me, I knew they'd come in handy at some point, but I had NO idea I would be brought almost to tears of gratitude when I really needed them and they were waiting for me. There were numerous odds and ends of course. I discovered that I had an entire set of the purpley plastic dining pieces I'd only vaguely remembered - I think those cups, bowls, plates, and mugs were among the first things I ever put in the hope chest. Casual/outdoor service for four! I also found five drinking glasses with white and gold roses on them and five wine glasses, which I chose from my great grandmother's possessions when she passed away years ago. I ALSO found a 16 pc fine china set that I had no idea I had - saucers, dessert plates, salad plates, dinner plates, and teacups, with delicate roses along the edges. I would not choose that particular style if I was buying brand new, but I love that they remind me of my precious Mimi and they are just perfect. At the bottom of the chest, lo and behold.... a 70 pc silverware set! Service for EIGHT, plus a handful of serving forks and spoons.

There was also a knife set from China (complements of my dad on his business trip - it's the sort of set that has some knives, shears, a peeler, etc), the beautiful hand painted table cloth my parents purchased for me from South Africa, and (and this is very precious to me) several items made specifically for me from my deceased Uncle M. There is a large and two small boxes; finely jointed, carefully burnt for an aged effect, precisely made and one has my name written on it. There is also a faerie call - a small piece of wood that appears to have no seams yet rattles when shaken as it contains pieces of stone and metal that are supposed to summon faeries. Finally, a magic wand - a triangular length of wood (not round) with twine wrapped to make a handle, and at the other end carefully wrapped silver wire and a bit of quartz. He chose the various elements to suit me, and he once explained the various energies involved. I do not count on them for magical powers, but the love he poured into these gifts just humbles my heart. He passed away about three years ago after a long hard life, but I will always hold on to these trinkets as being the best part of him.

When I was given all these housewares and gifts, I knew that somewhere down the road they would be useful because every house needs plates, etc. I didn't know I'd find myself kneeling on my carpet, flat broke if not in debt, in awe of the love and forethought demonstrated by beloved family as they prepared for my future before I knew how. I'm sure I liked getting a fancy silverware set for Christmas when I was in my teens... but really, is that the most exciting gift ever? Yet, whatever other gift they could have given me would be forgotten and useless by now. This one will remind me every day that I am loved and cared for!

I am more eager than ever to clean up the rental and move in. I have an amazing life ahead of me!