Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Really Creeps You Out

Maybe this a bonus photo-a-day post. Maybe I'm bored of editing my thesis and need a diversion. Maybe I just really wanted to show you how weird and creepy my life can be.
Three things:
1. The cat thinks he's a creepy spider and/or viper. Right after I took this, he jumped out and bit the phone.

2. We came home and found this on the bed. Yes, that is a cat molar that fell out of Brozhy's mouth.

3. Hm...maybe it's better not to explain this one. I'll just let the gears in your brain work it over.

Bonus: I can't stop listening to this song for some reason. It's fuel for getting through the hours of thesis-ing I guess. Thanks Abby, even though you never read this.

...And now it's time for a cookie break before I tackle the next round of edits (by the way, thank you to those who took the time to read through the 20-page beast).

Something I'm Listening To

SILT: Ha, silt! Anyway. The ipod is blurry, but "Green River" by CCR shuffled up on my ipod this evening on my way to class. I like CCR, they make me think of summer and places I've never been, like bayous and Vietnam. Yip.

And thus ended the month of photos!

Tuesday, February 28, 2012


Money: our jar for pennies

Monday, February 27, 2012

Something I Ate

Something I ate: This, to me, is comfort food. And yes, it does have to be Andersen brand pea soup. With bacon. I will accept no other. In fact, I have Mom ship me cans of the stuff periodically because they only sell it in California. Delicious to have for dinner after a cold shift excavating.

Sunday, February 26, 2012


Night: This picture doesn't represent how freezing cold and dangerously windy it is tonight. Also, the Oscars are on tonight. I have homework so I'm not watching them, but I'm keeping my eyes on a live blog feed. I'm annoyed Hugo is winning so many awards. It wasn't that good. And we all know it's only winning because it's a Martin Scorcese film.

Lo and Behold!

(Reprint of a post from my food blog..but it's life related too)

As my parents' wedding gift to us, we were able to go out and purchase a Kitchenaid! YES!!!
I am so incredibly excited. It's a beautiful candy apple green (I wanted a lighter green, but Sam, who is allergic to mint, said it looked too much like the offending herb and refused to let me get it, but that's ok) and it is going to make my baking life fifty times easier. I just wish it wasn't so dang heavy.
Anybody want me to make them a cake?
The inaugural recipe was cheesecake marble brownies-- something simple, but chocolatey and delicious and different. I'm making bread next though-- food I've put off making very often because it's very difficult to get good results with out any kind of electric mixer.

I also got to use my brand new double boiler. My cooking life has gotten significantly less ghetto since I got married and got all these presents, let me tell you.
Another thing-- I was cracking eggs into the batter, but the egg was recalcitrant, so I said "come on egg, hatch that velociraptor!" Which is a veiled reference to Jurassic Park, of course. And then the next egg cracked (without help) like this:


Saturday, February 25, 2012

Deck the Halls

Today Sam and I worked on a project with the end result of having nice-looking and/or interesting hall walls. I'm happy with the results.

First, on the wall by the living room, we put up a collage of sorts of wedding photographs, plus an awesome canvas thing Adrien made for us. The quote thing is from the song we danced to at the reception.

Second, in the back hallway, we put up a pinboard map so we can pin places we've been/lived separately and together, as well as places we want to go together (mostly because I felt dumb because Sam had twice as many pins as me so I wanted to fill the map more). The board was a wood pulp board that came in a gigantic sheet that we got for $10 at Lowes. I'm glad we thought to check there, because we were really close to spending $50 on a scrawny little rolled-up cork board. Anyway, we cut it to size (lots leftover), nailed it to the wall, stapled the map to the board, and pinned the pins!
In case you're curious, blue is where I've been, yellow and orange are where Sam has been, green is where we've been together, and pink and purple are where we'd like to go. I'm excited to have the map not only because I love maps and I love looking at maps, but also because I like the idea of having a visual marker of where we've been and where we're going. Because one way or another, we'll get to all those places we want to go.


Green: My ring. Because there is no green to speak of in this dead and dreary winter.

Bathroom Cabinet

Inside the Bathroom Cabinet: We don't have a bathroom cabinet. We have this weird shelf thing that I'm pretty sure at one time had a sliding door on it.

Thursday, February 23, 2012

My Shoes

My Shoes: on the left. My good friend Madison's on the right. Just hanging out in the TA office.

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

The Bet-Rum

One of my goals for the year was to get every room in the house (including hallways) looking how I wanted it. So far the bedroom is the only room I've actually completed. It was actually done a while ago, but then all the pictures fell off the walls and some of the frames broke before I could take pictures, so it took a while to get everything up and running again in order to be presentable. Anyway, I finally finished this morning before class, and I'm so glad it looks so cozy (to me) again!

What I loved about doing this room is that I was able to make everything all nautical, which is my favorite thing in the world. And it was more Sam-acceptable than how I had my bedroom before I was married (sort of flowery did that happen?). All the artwork in the bedroom was either painted by me or photographed by me (except for a Turkish sunset by Sam and some cut-outs from old Naval books or somesuch). I made the shell garland over the bed/window with old shells I've been collecting since before I can remember, and it actually wasn't too difficult once I figured out what would work. And I've already talked about the dresser.

PS I think my cat is a brachiator. He can do this, and he does (seriously):

Where I Work

Where I Work: Press release stuff from the MPC.

A Favorite Picture of Myself

AFPOM: I just like this one. It marks, to me, a turnaround in my life a couple of years ago when I changed my attitude and my life greatly improved. La la la. Also, at the time, I was bowling with some of my favorite people, so that probably had something to do with the smiliness.

Monday, February 20, 2012


Handwriting: I love lists! Though technically this is printing, not handwriting, I figured you'd actually want an accurate representation of the way I write, which is not in the scribbles of a fourth-grader. So there.

Sunday, February 19, 2012

Something I Hate to Do

SIHTD: Obviously I didn't take this picture. But today we had the opportunity to watch Megan's kids all day. It was challenging but fun. I just hate changing poopy diapers.

Saturday, February 18, 2012


Drink: Thank goodness for nice parents in California who send us home-grown oranges to make juice with.

Drink up, me hearties, yo ho!

Friday, February 17, 2012


Time: Today marks our two month-iversary. Phew.

El Zorro & Honest Abe

I grew up watching old Zorro movies. At least I think I did. I remember watching them several times when I was little, until the film with Antonio Banderas came out in 1998. When I graduated from kindergarten in 1994 (or whenever), they gave us, in addition to paper mortarboards, excellent real-cloth capes with yarn drawstring ties. That cape turned me into Zorro. I often snatched up my little brother's wooden sword, donned the cape, and tied a handkerchief over my face as a mask.

I would then proceed to run rampant all over the house, waving my sword in a "Z" pattern, pretending to ride my horse, and I assume saving the world. You know how it is.

Anyway, I've always had a soft spot in my heart for The Fox, especially growing up in California, where we had to learn constantly about the colonization of Alta California and build models of missions and all that stuff. The 1998 film is, in my opinion, totally excellent. Sometimes the theme song will randomly get stuck in my head, and I wander around singing it under my breath. And OH whenever I hear the zing of the guitar and the clapping and snapping of the castanets it makes me want to bust out into a flamenco dance (which I can't do to save my life. But that doesn't stop me from trying). Don't talk to me about the second Zorro film. It was dumb. Horses with cartoon expressions? Gag.

But I have just heard news that Fox (irony!) will be doing a modern remake of the "Zorro" tale...and I am incredibly intrigued. It's not set to be released until 2014 according to IMDb, but MTV Movies Blog is already talking about it, so I'm allowed to be excited about the potential of Zorro Reborn (it seems this is the working title, but we all know that could change).

Oh, and it's starring Gael Garcia Bernal (from Letters to Juliet and better things I haven't seen). Who I don't mind looking at.

Speaking of movies, I'm super stoked for Abraham Lincoln: Vampire Hunter. Since around this time is also the anniversary of the Confederacy seceding from the Union (last year being the 150th anniversary), here are some interesting stereographs (clickable to animate so you can view them as through a stereograph-viewer!) I came across from the Civil War, as well as The Atlantic's 150th Anniversary stuff from last year, which includes a lot of cool articles, stories, poems, and photographs from people you better have heard of and were THERE (Harriet Beacher Stowe, Frederick Douglas, Mark Twain, Louisa May Alcott, and on and on!)
Okay, okay, here's the trailer for Lincoln, because it excites me so:

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Something New

Something New: Tonight was the very first time I really studied for a religion exam. Hopefully it'll actually make a difference (in this, my very last religion class...sigh...why didn't I think to do this before? I might've kept my GPA at a 4.0)

Wednesday, February 15, 2012


Phone: Here it is, shadowed. This device gives me nothing but trouble and really is just a money suck. Sam wants to use his birthday money to upgrade me to an iPhone. I'm not sure why I'm rebelling.

The Venus Project

In reading my friend Reyna's blog post today, I learned about a project called the Venus Project. Reyna brought up a few points that also sparked my thoughts as I looked at it.
Essentially, the Project is this: Anna Utopia Giordano, an Italian model and artist, decided to photoshop a number (10) of paintings of the goddess Venus (herself a historical symbol of beauty and womanly perfection) to bring their bodies to modern-day perceptions of beauty.
Here are a few examples:

Reyna's qualm with the alterations in the paintings (and Reyna, if you read this, correct me if I'm wrong) was that she didn't feel the altered images really portrayed the beauty of the female figure. She said "My favorite thing about the original paintings is the shape of the woman's body. It is real. It is beautiful. And I've always celebrated my own body when it looked a little bit more like the beautiful women in the paintings I adore. And it makes me stop and wonder, why do we place such an emphasis on being thin? Because a woman's body to me is beautiful with all the curves."

I completely agree with this observation. To me, the altered Venuses look unreal, almost creepy. So after reading what Reyna thought, I went and did a little research on what point Giordano was trying to get across when she did the photoshopping.

The statement Giordano made is this: "Art is always in search of the perfect physical form – it has evolved through history, from the classical proportions of ancient Greece, to the prosperous beauty of the Renaissance, to the spindly look of models like Twiggy and the athletic look of our own time."

So it appears from this statement, and others you can find in any of the numerous press releases (the best-written one in English being this one, in my opinion) linked on her website, that the purpose of her doing this project was twofold: first, to create a visual contrast between how perceptions of beauty have changed over time (between when the paintings were originally made and today-- though the paintings themselves are from wildly different time periods), and second, to make people more aware of the ease (and frequency) of the "industry" in editing and photoshopping figures of women in order to make them appear idealistic (by the way if I'm using funny terminology, it's because I'm actually sitting in my art history class at the moment). However, I kind of feel like the latter purpose was sort of invented by the press and subsequently pinned on the artist.

In any case, the answer to Reyna's question seems to be relative. Most people are aware of the power that models such as Twiggy have had on fashion and modeling, creating such a massive influence even after the presence of incredibly well-liked figures such as Marilyn Monroe, who are bustier, curvier, etc. I actually feel that nowadays there is becoming a split in the perceived beauty of women-- one side prefers the stick-skinny "Skeletor's Daughter" types, and others prefer the curvaceous or "natural" beauty of woman.

To complete your mental images:
From the AnyBody Activism Campaign (there are other photographs I like better, but this is the best I could find in a pinch to illustrate my point)

And here's the thing-- forget it all. First of all, while clearly most of the model industry has ingrained in its mind that thinness is beautiful and clarity of skin and hair and a pouty face is beautiful, this does not have to be the opinion of the whole world. And it isn't. Nobody forces you to listen to what people say. Nobody forces you to say "Hey, that photoshopped picture of Jennifer Connelly on the cover of Vogue is WAY prettier than she is when she's bedraggled and angry in A Beautiful Mind." Honestly, I didn't even recognize the airbrushed version of her when I saw it.

Maybe if you don't know me that well you're thinking I have no right to be making these claims and telling you all to knock it off with the belly-aching because I'm so skinny myself.

And here's the thing about that-- I can't help my body type. And while sometimes it appeals to my lazy self that I don't ever have to go to the gym and exercise in order to stay at a constant clothing size or whatever, most of the time I hate it. My metabolism is often too fast for its own good. I've had way too many subsequent health problems because of it (anemia, difficulty putting on weight, digestive issues, occasional heart condition, whatever). My whole life I've been the brunt of skinny jokes (yes, they exist), which at one sad point in high school caused me to think that was the only way I could get attention and I pushed it a little too far with an eating disorder.

I'm not trying to sound like a pity party. I just want all those women (and men!) out there who struggle so hard to either fit into a perceived mold or to fight against the unrealistic expectations of beauty, to just be calm. Everyone has a different body type, a different metabolism, whatever. They're all beautiful, because a body is a story, not an object of beauty. It is the story of everything that makes you you, from all your scars and uneven-ness, to your bony or chunky hips, to your sharply angled shoulders or softly curved parts; it's you, and THAT'S FINE.

I just wish that the younger people who see things through a simplified and popular lens and haven't yet realized that self image depends more on who you are and how you act that what you look like, and that the things that make you unique are far more beautiful than any perceived notions.

Now I'm ranting. Blah.

Tuesday, February 14, 2012


Heart: Because he is the other half of mine.

Monday, February 13, 2012


Blue: This is kind of a cheating post today. I really wanted to show some pictures from the Tabernacle excavation, and so there's more than one picture here. However, every picture has something blue in it. So we're good!
One of the first non-nail, non-glass artifacts I've found! It's a huge ceramic piece of something that I think looks like a hockey puck. We all know what they were really doing in the basement of the tabernacle...
Part of the west wall, also showing the cellar outline where we're focusing right now. The roundish rock-looking-thing sort of to the left of the blue tape is a plaster pillar base in the cellar.
View from above the wall looking northeast after most of the site was covered with tarps at the end of the day.
The old tabernacle site in relation to the middle-aged tabernacle (which partially burned down last year, as you know) looking south.

Inside My Closet

(From Sunday) Inside My Closet: Not much to tell. Not all my clothes are hanging because we are in dire need of a laundry day, but we're all out of quarters. And Sam's clothes are encroaching on my space! Boo!

Saturday, February 11, 2012

Makes Me Happy

Makes Me Happy: Chicken Parade??? A wonderful book in the bargain section at Barnes & Noble.

Bonus "Makes me happy": Sam the Godfather and a Bloomin' Onion after a temple sesh...

Friday, February 10, 2012

Self Portrait

Self Portrait: After a shift at the Tabernacle Excavation. One of these days I'll take pictures of the actual site and some of the cool finds if I remember.

Happy Friday!