Thursday, December 16, 2010

Merry Christmas through the Ages

I'm happy to share that I got a new computer just in time to write my last few papers of 2010. I am officially 5 semesters down and 1 semester left to go on my Masters Degree! I haven't been this pleased with myself in some time.

Along with a fully functioning computer, I was also given the gift a restored iPhoto library. I have been flooded with memories and gratitude! How did people remember their lives before pictures and external hard drives?

Here's a walk through Christmas Pasts:

Merry Christmas 2006

Merry Christmas 2007

Merry Christmas 2009

I hope you found this one bit as amusing as I did!

Sunday, November 21, 2010

from my family to yours

Happy Holidays! (Could I dare try to get a better portrait than this? It still cracks me up every time I see it.)

Wednesday, November 17, 2010


I love Jimmy Fallon because he can't ever seem to keep from laughing at his own jokes. He sure keeps a straight face in this video. I grew up listening to Neil Young in the car with my dad, and Jimmy really sounds like him. Love (he he he) it!

Bruce Springsteen and "Neil Young" via Pretty Much Amazing

He's alive!

My dad recently told me that Jerry Stiller died a few years ago. I was upset for a few reasons: 1) Jerry Stiller was dead and 2) I thought I was more up on these things than Santiago!

But then I went on Hulu to watch Glee and check out what I found!

Also, Hulu Plus is now available on my Roku. Sadly I am too lazy to turn on my tv so I am still going to watch Glee on my laptop in bed for now. Someone check out the free trial and let me know how it is, or I'll just wait til Bone gets back in the country and he'll be all over it.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Frank O'Hara

It seems they were all cheated of some marvelous experience which is not going to go wasted on me, which is why I'm telling you about it:

Ann found this poem in one of our anthologies in college. Hearing her read it outloud made me love it. Frank O'Hara does a good job too.

If this doesn't do much for you than try listening to Don Draper reading another O'Hara poem. So, so fine. The worlds are perfect for this gloomy day.

It's Kind of a Funny Story

For two weeks in a row Bone told me he wanted to go see this movie. I never heard anything about it and didn't have a clue what it was about. Turns out it was seriously up my alley. Plus it got me pumped for working with teens and Dr. Simone at the psych hospital next semester.

It's a sweet and funny movie about the angst of being alive. It's also totally hopeful. Have you seen it?

Our Colonial Capitol

Did you know that Tina Fey went to UVA? I love seeing the impression Mister Jefferson made on her come out in 30 Rock, like when Tracey Jordan made a movie of Thomas Jefferson's life where he played every role himself. Brilliant. My favorite thing though is when she throws some dap towards old Colonial Williamsburg. I mean, let's get real-- I love our Colonial Capitol.

While I had one of the most fun days in a while two weeks ago at W&M Homecoming, Tommy and I decided to go back to Williamsburg the following weekend to enjoy fall in the colony a bit more. (Does it sound like we are old people? I don't care what you think!)

I wish I could make these pictures bigger. I am really enjoying the Pudding Camera app, which I used to take these pictures in panoramic view. Check out the app but beware, although it's called "Pudding" that doesn't mean it's not completely in Korean...

Shout out to the colonial ghosts and the cobbler too! Do you love Colonial Williamsburg too??

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

I'm a new soul, I came to this strange world...

How sexy is the new MacBook Air? I really want it. Actually, I need it. Here's why:

1. My current MacBook has no battery. I mean, it won't work unless plugged in. If unplugged it dies within 2 seconds.
2. Due to a major meltdown caused by the cursed Flip Videocam (which was required for school), I had to move all my files (pictures, music) onto an External Hard Drive over a year ago. I have yet to figure out how to access them.
3. Since moving my music onto my External HD, iTunes has vanished from my computer. This means 2 terrible things: 1) I can't listen to my music. 2) I can't download the updates for my iPhone.
4. My compture can't handle downloading the new iTunes. I think I need Snow Leopard or whatev it's called.
5. Due to not being able to update my iPhone I can't receive picture text messages. Or send them.
6. A friend told me that I can fix these problems buy purchasing more RAM, Gigs, a new battery and a bigger Hard Drive. My eyeballs turn to swirls when he said this and I put my fingers in my ears and said "LA LA LA LA". Meaning, I need a new computer.

Anyway, this is not an elaborate excuse for why I can't hold up my end of the Katie and Ruthie CD Exchange via Snail Mail project, although I realize it might sound that way.

My laptop is 4.5 years old. How long should I expect it to last? Should I put money into fixing it or buy a new one? (Hint, there's only one right answer.)

Thursday, October 28, 2010

my first crush:

I have vivid memories of discussing my love for Uncle Jessie with other little leotard-clad girls while waiting in the vault line at gymnastics. I was six years old. John Stamos, you have aged so well.

Thank you, People of Glee, for making this happen. Have Mercy!

(Quick-- watch this video before it gets yanked off the internet like all the other clips I share.)


Afternoons are fading fast and spookfest is coming this weekend. I so wish I was a 15 year old boy this Halloween. Instead I'm a 26 year old grad student who has this first painting by Christopher St. Leger as her desktop background. No biggie until I pass my laptop off to the Head of Mental Health Services in VB to use for her power point presentation at a seminar I'm helping host. Maybe it doesn't matter, she probably didn't notice. But then another woman I met from Social Services told one of my classmates that she met Ruthie Weiglein on Friday and "she's such a precious little girl."

Crap, I seriously need a professional makeover. And some sweet custom business cards. But really, what angry teenager wouldn't dig a therapist with these paintings in her office? Or at least looked like a teenager herself? Aye Dios...

Monday, October 4, 2010


This past weekend Tommy and I drove from VB to Ikea in Potomac Mills and then on to Charlottesville. Despite the fact that I have never been able to choose a song on an iPod without immediately getting carsick, I shouldered through and read this book on the entire car ride. I couldn't stop.

I really don't know how to describe it without giving away many of the details that I wished I didn't know when I picked up the book. Instead, I'll give you one of the quotes on the back cover:

"Emma Donoghue's writing is superb alchemy, changing innocence into horror and horror into tenderness. Room is a book to read in one sitting. When it's over you look up: the world looks the same but you are somehow different and that feeling lingers for days."

-Audrey Niffenegger, author of The Time Traveler's Wife and Her Fearful Symmetry

I cannot stop thinking about this book, it's characters and their story. If you've read it and want to discuss it, let's do so please.

Wednesday, September 22, 2010


As soon as I heard this song I knew that I liked it. After investigating, I discovered that it is by Willow Smith, Will and Jada's 9 YEAR OLD DAUGHTER. What?! I mean, I'm probably not beyond exploiting my kid if they were cute, funny, smart or made me look like a clever parent. But Will, aren't you still riding that high from your hit movie "Hitch"? Bone sure loves that scene when Hitch teaches the chubby white guy from "King of Queens" how to dance.

But really, I like this song. You go, Willow. I saw you on Oprah when you had shaved your head to make a statement. You were like 7 then. So, in light of that, I guess this makes sense.

Listen to the song and read more about it on Pretty Much Amazing

Willow - Whip My Hair by maddwestent

Once I had a glamorous summer where I traveled a whole bunch. I swear I watched this movie on 4 different planes. And you know what? I still love this scene:

Tuesday, September 14, 2010


My Hunger Games party is gonna look a lot like this. Except with Mockingjays. #newtweataleat


I admit, it took watching this video a couple of times for me to actually pay attention to the story. It's worth the watch because it's adorable. Although I get the illustration of the "Twitterverse", I'm left wondering: is the young man's Big Night lost in the never-ending scroll or is it a part of a much bigger and connected world? Either way, I think I found the student who bought his girl the black and white diamond ring.

Lemon Badanes

My doggie Bobito Badanes is my mascot and my sidekick. Through guilt and persistence I convinced Tommy to get me a puppy to cure me of the separation anxiety I felt when he traveled so much for work. The only problem is now Juan Bobo has separation anxiety from us. The minute I turn toward my full length mirror to put on earrings, Bobito starts shaking violently. Ahh, the transference of guilt is a powerful thing!

I have decided we must get Bobito a new playmate, a second puppy: Lemon Badanes. The best part about this idea is that Tommy agrees! Aye Dios, we are in for it. (I mean, when we move to a house with a yard in 5 years.) I love a simple solution.

Anyway, how adorable are these personalized portraits of girls and their dogs? Paule Trudel Bellemare truly knocks it out of the park with these prints. They are by far the cutest and most unique custom pet portraits I've ever seen.

found via decor8

Monday, September 13, 2010

Oh, Mariachi Me

If you have ever planned a dinner party with the intention of dessert dissolving into dancing, you know it can be a tricky transition to pull off. I've never seen it happen with such ease as at parties in Nicaragua, when you look up mid-bite to see a tiny car open and an 8 (over-sized) piece mariachi band emerge.

This picture reminds me not only of those fun parties, but also of this poem by Ted Kooser:

Oh, Mariachi Me

All my life I have wanted nothing so much
as the love of women. For them I have fashioned
the myth of myself, the singing troubadour
with the flashing eyes. Always for them
my black sombrero with its swinging tassels,
this vest embroidered with hearts, these trousers
with silver studs down the seams. Oh, I am
Mariachi me, as I had intended. I am success
and the price of success, now old and dusty
at the edge of the dance floor, still smiling,
heavy with hope, clutching my dead guitar.

Oh how sweet and sad! I too have fashioned the myth of myself, still smiling and heavy with hope. Now let's party!

photo by Tec Petaja

thanks to Tommy for this update:

Sunday, September 12, 2010

B+W Ring

Tonight I stumbled upon this ring by Priyanka Sodhi and fell in love. I've been pretending that I am a poor student plotting to propose to my sweetheart. As soon as I found this ring I knew it was perfect for her-- dainty, unique and understated. She wouldn't be able to deny me.

Monday, August 30, 2010

Runaway love.

Kanye West + Raekwon + Justin Bieber

It's no secret that I'm a Justin Bieber fan. And why should it be a secret? You gotta be a Scrooge McDuck to hate that burst of pop sunshine. It seems to me that Kanye's a bit late to the game to be teaching JB the ways of the biz... Please don't tell him I said that.

I'm just tryin to be coo'...

via hypetrack and hip hop connection (forgive those sound bites in the clip)

If you say you don't like TV you are a liar.

The opening of last night's Emmy Awards.

Tina Fey+ Jon Hamm + Joel McHale + cast of Glee + Tim Gunn = so so fun

Sunday, August 29, 2010

Chincoteague polaroids

Island Manor House

Despite being sick and the monster mosquitoes, we hiked to the lighthouse. Here's a view of Assateague Island from the top.

The famous ponies live wild and free on Assateague Island in a protected wildlife refuge. You can drive or ride bikes around the refuge on a big nature loop. If you look really closely you can see a big group of horses grazing behind the trees in the center of the photo.

It was a gorgeous day to drive on the Bay Bridge Tunnel. Always such a treat. It was a brief but fun trip! I was bummed to be sick but we still managed to enjoy ourselves.

Chincoteague is quaint and charming and I hope to one day bring our middle school children there, give them bikes, and let them loose on the fishing village. The island is safe and only a few blocks wide. It's full of replicas of the lighthouse and old fashion ice cream parlors. You know, it would be like a trip to Busch Gardens for them, only we'd spend the night.

Thursday, August 26, 2010

Nicholas Bohac

The only way I could love these paintings by Nicholas Bohac more is if they were already hanging on my wall. I love artwork that has a lot jammed into it-- lots of color, activity and potential interpretations. These pieces are perfect.

Bohac has a lot more of paintings to look at on his website. Be sure to check out his Iceburger series.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

A Young Adult Bed & Breakfast

Tommy took the week off so the two of us could hang out between his hectic summer schedule and my fall semester. We leave for Chincoteague today! Now, I had every intention of getting this book from the library and re-reading it before our trip B U T guess what came in the mail today:

My pre-ordered copy of the 3rd book in The Hunger Games trilogy! You know, having a well-read husband is both a blessing and a curse. A blessing because he will never turn down any book I suggest. A curse because he feels entitled to read the book I pre-ordered for myself first. I decided he should have first dibs because he reads so much faster than me and because I'm already eyebrow-deep in another novel. And I want to savor the last installment of this series for as long as I can.

I'm excited about our trip away.
The B&B we are staying at offers bikes and gourmet picnic lunches. Gee wiz, staying at Bed and Breakfastes makes me feel a billion years old.

BUT! In other news, I am planning a Hunger Games Book Club Party. Unlike my other parties, this is an exclusive event, open only to those who have read all 3 books in the series. My brother Peeta (haha, HG joke...) and I have talked in length about the food that will be served: berries, chicken in orange sauce, tiny loaves of bread suspended on parachutes... I can't wait to see what Book 3 will add to the menu!

Anyway, let me know if you meet the criteria for an invite. The date has yet to be set... there's still time to read these page-turners...

In the words of Liz Lemon, "Peace out, Nerds!"

Monday, August 23, 2010

all delighted people raise your hands

<a href="">All Delighted People (Original Version) by Sufjan Stevens</a>

Check out Sufjan's new 8 track, 60 minute EP. I was thrilled to discover Sufjan had new music and even more thrilled to listen to the entire album online for free. Let me know what you think about his rendition of "The Sound of Silence" by Simon and Garfunkel. How delightful indeed!

From his website:

"All Delighted People is built around two different versions of Sufjan’s long-form epic ballad "All Delighted People," a dramatic homage to the Apocalypse, existential ennui, and Paul Simon’s "Sounds of Silence."

Ah, a dramatic homage to the Apocalypse. Perfecto. Enjoy!

so literal

I'm realizing that this website is my internet collage of all the images and videos that I want to look at over and over again. If that's the case then this video better be on here. I watched it multiple times a day during the winter of 2008. I'm still not tired of it.

God bless you, John Darnielle. You know he use to work in a psych hospital? How typical.

Thursday, August 19, 2010

songs about body art

If this blog were to get a tattoo, this would totally be it:

When I first met my mother-in-law she asked me point blank if I had any tattoos or piercings. Despite the fact that I don't, I told her that I had a few hidden ones. I couldn't help myself.

I'm too wishy-washy to commit to a tattoo, but I sure love this one.

found via size too small

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Team Man Skirt

South African from the waist down by Coza Productions

When Erin throws a surprise Wiffle Ball Tourney for John's birthday and asks everyone to form teams and wear costumes, we assume she is serious. For some reason Team Man Skirt was the only one in uniform!

I heard this song called "South African from the Waist Down" and immediately thought of our team manager, Andrew. Even though he's the only one wearing a man skirt in South Africa, I thought the title couldn't be more perfect. Click through to watch the video and read the story behind the song-- it's so sweet!

I really need a new pair of sunglasses. Waka waka!

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

you cut me off mid-funk!

Why this show got canceled after one season is beyond me. It just got better and better with each episode. Ahhhh.... the dancing kills me!

Hipster Christianity

I took a class this summer on Social Construction which, in short, is the process of creating one's own meaning. We examined this theory in light of adult development and more specifically, the rejection and ownership of one's own culture and religion of origin. Gee wiz, and I thought I was the only one who laid awake at night worrying if the Christianity of My Youth could survive my late adolescence. I hate feeling cliche.

When I feel like a cliche I pout and then write an academic paper about it. This guy Brett McCracken laughed and then wrote a book about it!

Are you a Christian Hipster? Take the quiz to find out!

Monday, August 16, 2010

Summer swallowed us whole.

It's that time of year when people start dreaming of fall and sweaters and some seasonal drink at Starbucks. Not me, my summer just started. I have a two week break between semesters and I am wringing it out for all it's worth.

I'm not wishing for snow but I think these techno ice-capped mountains are beautiful.

artwork by Kim Asendorf/ found via butdoestitfloat

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

Thanks to Carrie for this guest post! I have been addicted to GREEK since I was waiting tables right out of school. I would come home after work and watch the episodes in my room on my laptop. Helped me hang on to college. Bone always laughs at how Rusty's eyeballs are perma wide.

Since this seems to be more relevant now, can someone tell me if this is Rusty??

Tender is the Night.

I've noticed book sellers coming up with a lot of creative incentives for choosing their book. Why buy the ebook when you can have a designed book jacket by Coralie Brickford-Smith? These are definitely worth getting and storing on your bookshelf until you can move it to your dream library with a ladder. (Am I the only one with that Beauty and the Beast dream?)

In other news, "Tender is the Night" is my most favorite book title/string of words. I have always loved it. My copy was tattered and very 1970s looking, nothing like the above beauties. And you know what, I don't think it survived enough moves to make it on my current bookcase. There you go, case in point. Spend a bit more money for the copy you want to keep forever.

found via design*sponge

Monday, August 9, 2010

a dream inside a dream

I have the most vivid and bizarre dreams. No matter how many hours of sleep I get I still wake up scared, confused or exhausted because my mind was churning all night. I have considered getting hypnotized to rid myself of these dreams. But then I think twice when I imagine the damage that might have on my creative process.

These chilling photographs look like they came straight out of a haunted dreamscape. I can just imagine an angsty Leo DiCap' perched on top of that sand.

Desert Indoors by Alvaro Sanchez-MontaƱes.

via burstoid

I'd like to see this Gap commercial

Never would've pegged Roger Sterling as the hottie out of this crowd. See what I mean about eye candy?

photo credit/tomandlorenzo

Sunday, August 8, 2010

I follow a lot of baby blogs but I have never seen anything like this. Parents, you want to pump up your web traffic? Teach your baby to do this. So incredible.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Mad about Everything Mad Men

I can't get enough of Mad Men. Thankfully neither can anyone else. NPR has been interviewing everyone from Matt Weiner to the guy who plays Lane Price to a real Ad Guy from the 1960s who wrote a book that Mad Men is supposedly based on. The book was out of print for years but came back recently due to its new relevance.

One truly awesome element of new media is the fact that all the Mad Men characters are tweeting through out the week. They are keeping the storyline alive during the work week between Sunday night episodes. It is brilliant. I mean, Don Draper's sad tweets about how lonely he was in his new apartment in the city kept me chomping at the bit for more all summer.

Check out the run down on all the Mad Twitter-ers in this great piece by The Baltimore Sun.

Check out the great fashion analysis and episode-by-episode commentary by TLo.

As if the characters and clothes weren't enough, I can't get enough of the mod furniture and art:

Everything is eye candy!