Thursday, October 31, 2013

Happy Halloween!

The other plus about the timing of this SoCal visit is doing Halloween in the office.  Goodness knows I love dressing up!  This year I roped my friend in to do the characters from Dodgeball:

My good friends also got in the spirit with Despicable Me's Gru and Toy Story's Jessie:

And we had to dig this shower costume a la The Karate Kid (in case you forgot--it's the costume that Daniel wears to his first party in the movie):

In fact everyone dug the Shower costume, including Holly Golightly:

Though appropriately, Despicable Me's Agnes was a bit concerned:

Minions take aim:  If you can dodge a wrench you can dodge a ball!

Absolutely dug hanging with Captain America and this Minion:

This Minnie Mouse, Masquerade Ball Queen, and Egyptian Queen put a smile on my face:

Even the girl got into it with her 50s costume:

I love Halloween!

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Hello Cali!

We're having a memorial for my mom in the Bay area this week and we swung by SoCal and the girl caught up with some of her lovely high school friends:

We grabbed lunch at Urban Plates:

with my cool crafty friend Linda:

The food was really tasty--reminded me of a smaller scale version of Lemonade:

And the girl and I squeezed in haircuts with Christina:

It was a really quick drop-by to SoCal but we packed every minute!

Monday, October 28, 2013

Reno 911! for Halloween party

This year we went to a Halloween party at our gym and I made our costumes for Reno 911! Lt. Dangle and Deputy Kimball.  I got both our khaki pants and shirts from the Goodwill for a grand total of $13, I printed our Sheriff Department patches on to iron-on transfer sheets, and we picked up our Sheriff badges at the Dollar Store where it was 6 in a package.  The big expenditures was the $7 "human hair" mustache for Paul and $6 aviators.  But not bad for less than $30 for the both of us right?

This little guy had the best costume--as the most adorable Chippendale's dancer EVER. You can bet he had dollar bills in his waistband by the end of the night!

And mad props to my favorite adult costume: Kenny Powers!

The other highlight of the party was the awesome food--I had at LEAST one of each of these cupcakes.  So tasty and so crafty!

I'm kind of at a loss for another costume idea for actual Halloween. Any ideas?

Friday, October 25, 2013

The Grand Budapest Hotel

I get so excited for Wes Anderson movies and after seeing this trailer that was just released (a LOT of times), I'm really looking forward to seeing The Grand Budapest Hotel.

I love, love, love the art direction, unexpected protagonists, and unique storylines. Seeing this made me crave watching The Royal Tenenbaums again.  Before I die, I would love to create something as lovely, magical, charming as these movies.

Thursday, October 24, 2013

"Before I die..." Art installation

Stumbled across the interactive art installation, Before I Die, on Main Street a couple of weeks ago after the Race for Life:

Really appreciated the variation of people's specific declarations from the very heavy (...find a reason to live, ...have my son Alex back in my life) to wise goals (...stop obsessing over men) to interesting goals (...fart the loudest fart!)

I briefly thought about what I'd write on this wall if I was there during the installation and I kind of felt I wouldn't be able to come up with something to write. Does that sound weird? I'd feel this tremendous pressure that I had to come up with some life-defining goal, when I'd like to think I have many or that my goals are evolving and growing. I guess I kind of put a lot of weight in declaring something.

Or maybe I'd just come up with the fart goal.

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Wish I Could Be at the Book of Notes Workshop

Anyone else love the Book of Notes that Danni of Oh Hello Friend puts together?  I wish I had a picture of my own but hit the link and you'll see some awesome Book of Notes she makes.  They combine my favorite elements: paper, crafting, and sentiment.  Could you imagine giving one of these?  Or just as good--receiving one? 

They kind of remind of these bestselling books sold in the 90s (totally spacing on the titles!) that were purportedly love letters back and forth and came in this colorful book with little envelopes attached inside to artful pages.  Though I never read them, I was definitely attracted to the tactile participation.  These Book of Notes remind me of them but obviously I would prefer ones made personally.  I guess the challenging part would be coming up with the various sentiments to fill up the pages.

She is doing a Book of Notes Workshop this Sunday at her Fullerton, CA shop and holy cow, how I wish I was there for it!  Any Cali friends going?   Would love to see the finished project!

Monday, October 21, 2013

Linda's Reusable handcrafted produce/bulk bin bags

I scored a couple of these cool Reusable Washable Drawstring Produce bags from Linda:

I LOVE them.  Besides the fact that she designed and hand-dyed them with some crazy UV ink, they are totally washable and practical.  As someone who does quite a bit of bulk bin and produce shopping, I felt wasteful using all those plastic bags that I would use to bag up my dry beans, seeds, spinach, etc. and then end up just throwing them away afterwards.  Depending on the store, I could bring in my own containers--but it meant getting them weighed first every time I went.  Linda's bag weigh .05 pound, which is pretty negligible.

So I'm ready to go--and just load up on pumpkin seeds, dried chick peas, and more at the store.

Stylish, hand-crafted, functional, and good for the planet--a WIN all around!

Sunday, October 20, 2013

We Might Be Superheroes

Catching up on episodes of We Might Be Superheroes!

My friends shot a fun low-budget web series with strong female characters (good and evil!) that keeps getting better with each episode. Presented in short, digestible episodes that are great diversions from what's on TV. There is a pilot episode broken over 3 webisodes that introduces our witty heroines. A quirky episode about superheroes and taxes is probably my fave so far. Looking forward to the next one--check it out!

My football mojo has been in the toilet this year

Holy crap. Last year I came in 2nd in my fanpool football pool. This year, I'm currently in 14th place. Out of 19.

Last year in my fantasy football league, I lost only twice (or only once?) and led my division until playoffs. This year? I am currently 0-6. And yes, at the BOTTOM of my division.

But hopefully things are turning around. Last week I came in 3rd place in the general football pool and lost only by 3 points in my fantasy league match-up.

Will my mojo finally return in Week 7? Fingers crossed.

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Catch up: My first 5K--for a good cause

An awesome friend was an honoree at this year's Walk/Race for Life for winning her battle against breast cancer and our whole family joined her team.  Paul and the girl signed up for the Walk and I made the bold decision to do the 5K Run last month to help me motivate to start exercising again (and lose some of the weight I gained over the summer with a lot of travel and stress in NJ).

Unfortunately, my training was severely lacking, with my longest distance run less than a week before the event (and not much better, or often, before that):

But I managed to run a 33:29 (roughly a 10 minute pace?) and come in 331st place (out of 640 people--also 186th place out of 426 women), which I can't complain about considering how little I trained. Unlike my running friends who have just fallen in love with running more after initial races and are now prepping for marathons, I have no desire to run longer distances at all.  I will confess that it was a neat experience running through the city and traffic lights with no cars.  And honestly, the groups of people on the corner cheering?  I loved it.  I was pretty moved by it.  My favorite was the middle school marching band playing in the middle of it.  So maybe I'd a 5K again...but I'd like to be a lot better shape than this round.

Catch up: SC pride

The girl and I hit up the SC Pride festival where the music is always jamming:

And the food is fried and tasty.  Here's the girl and me before she ditched me for her friends.

Well, at least I enjoyed a lemon sugar crepe to keep me company!

Catch up: Happy birthday for the Girl

To be honest, coming back from Jersey from my mom's house a week before my girl's birthday, I wasn't at my game when her birthday came.  But we did take her out to breakfast before school on her actual birthday:

And it was a decadent brunch that had loads of coffee, chocolate, nutella, bread, and cheese:

I felt pretty lame about only doing breakfast out considering that I had spent a lot of 2013 up in NJ and wanted to give her a proper party.  So with the help of some of her friends, we were able to pull off a surprise party a week later--she never suspected, needless to say:

And what's not to like when you have friends, an awesome taco bar (a sweet gift from her aunt):


and uh, apparently at times, lack of parental supervision:

Sigh.  My girl is growing up so fast.

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

I can't believe it's been so long

since I blogged.  I have to confess that my mom's passing threw in a funk.  It's been a rough year, among many, and even though my mom's death was expected, it still threw me for a loop.  A friend said that whether a death is expected of not, it's still going to land hard.  I heard about the various phases of bereavement (isolation and denial, anger, bargaining, depression, and acceptance) and it seems that they hold some fundamental truths.  I still wrestle with a lot of guilt, regret, and sadness, but I think I'm making my way.  Some days I still lose track of time and think I'm replying to an email from yesterday that turned out to be from last week.  I thought I was behind on this blog a few weeks, but I'm closer to a couple of months.

Anyhoo, I managed to get some things done and I've got some catch up posts but I'm looking forward to getting back into some of my old routine again.

Wish me luck!