Monday, December 31, 2012

Oh, hi!

It's been a while, hasn't it?  I wasn't sure if I should even bother with the annual meme but then again, it's about the only New Years tradition that I've got.
The meme from last year is here, and there are links to the previous years on that page.

1. What did you do in 2012 that you'd never done before?
I got married
It was pretty awesome.
We went to Hawaii
We went scuba diving

Two days ago, I got my very first brand-new-not-used car and it's my dream car - a Fiat!!

2. Did you keep your new years' resolutions, and will you make more for next year?
I'm pretty sure that I didn't make any resolutions because I'm realistic and already know that I'm not going to keep them.  HOWEVER, this year I'm making one resolution, and it's an easy one, and it would be pathetic if I did not keep it.
RESOLUTION: I am going to keep up with this blog.

3. Did anyone close to you give birth?
Not this year.

4. Did anyone close to you die?
I've been lucky to keep those I love around another year.

5. What countries did you visit?
I didn't leave the USA this year (again) but I did get to different bits of it and that was fun.  Maui and Philadelphia were the furthest from home that I got and they were both so beautiful.  I spent some time with my BFF in San Diego.
Later in the year, I went back to San Diego for the Comic Con.
He proposed to me (again and officially) while we were in Philadelphia.

My brother and I went on a road trip earlier this month.  We went to visit a friend in Santa Cruz, stopping in Solvang and at the Madonna Inn along the way.

6. What would you like to have in 2013 that you lacked in 2012?
There are a few projects and ideas that I'd like to pursue and I really need to work on being a little more fearless about it.

7. What dates from 2012 will remain etched upon your memory, and why?
I'm not so good with specific dates but there were definitely some unforgettable months.  August, obviously.
Charles threw an awesome bachelorette party at The Edison for me. It had a Roaring Twenties theme and everyone looked amazing.

I made my own crown and dress, too.

Then, of course, there was the wedding and honeymoon.  I think, really, it's hard to get much more memorable than that.

8. What was your biggest achievement of the year?
I was able to leave a job I didn't want and focus to focus on my photography and get another business off the ground.

9. What was your biggest failure?
I can't think of any big failures, really.  This year has been a particularly good one and I feel incredibly fortunate.

10. Did you suffer illness or injury?
Just a cold or two, here and there.

11. What was the best thing you bought?
The car, obvs.  I have named her Clarence.  J does not like the name but it does not matter.  I drive the car, I name the car.

12. Whose behavior merited celebration?
A family member went through an incredibly difficult time this year and he's been able to change his life, push past it, learn, and grow so much.  He's really amazing.

13. Whose behavior made you appalled and depressed?
I skip this question every year, I think.  Really, I should just take it out of the meme but then next year, I'll notice the missing number, forget why it's missing, go look it up, get annoyed, and then put it back but not answer it.  So I just won't answer it here. 

14. Where did most of your money go?
The wedding.  It was awesome and beautiful and fun and great and cost roughly a bajillion dollars.  More than the new car, anyway.

15. What did you get really, really, really excited about?
The wedding.  What can I say?  It's a big deal.

16. What song will always remind you of 2012?
Nina Simone's Feelin Good.

It was our first dance and a song I listened to obsessively all year.

17. Compared to this time last year, are you:

a) happier or sadder?
Much happier
b) thinner or fatter?
About the same, which is better than fatter but not as good as thinner.
c) richer or poorer?
Poorer but better for it.

18. What do you wish you'd done more of?
I let some things go for longer than I should have.  I didn't take any photos for the last few months.  I haven't sewn all year (but J got me a new sewing machine for Christmas and yay!) and I need to get more serious about staying in shape.

19. What do you wish you'd done less of?
There were a few too many days spent doing nothing at all.  I need to do less sitting around this year.

20. How will you be spending Christmas?
I spent Christmas Eve with my family, parents, brother, and uncles and it was wonderful.  Christmas day was quiet, here in the new apartment with J and the kid.

21. Did you fall in love in 2012?
I stayed very happily in love.

22. How many taco stands?
Just the one, I think, in our old neighborhood in Echo Park.

23. What was your favourite TV program?
Doctor Who, as always.  Sherlock.    We've started watching Homeland, too.

24. Do you hate anyone now that you didn't hate this time last year?
Nope.  All the peoples is fine by me.

25. What was the best book you read?
Cloud Atlas was phenomenal.  I've really enjoyed The Walking Dead graphic novels, too.

26. What was your greatest musical discovery?
The tuba.  Although I didn't so much 'discover' it.  It was more like I had it forced on me.  The kid picked the tuba as his instrument this year and he practices faithfully.  We've already heard from the Cranky Neighbor about it.

27. What did you want and get?
My guy and my dream car.  Oh - and an iPad, which I only mention because I had on this meme from last year that I wanted one.

28. What did you want and not get?
A new camera.  The Canon 5D, specifically.

29. What was your favourite film of this year?
I loved Beasts of the Southern Wild.  Love, love, love.  The soundtrack was incredible, too.

30. What did you do on your birthday?237/365
Jesse and I met my brother in San Francisco.  It was so much fun!  The rest of the photos from that trip are here.

31.What one thing would have made your year immeasurably more satisfying?
A new camera.

32. How would you describe your personal fashion concept in 2012?
Feminine and quirky. Always the same.  This year I went with added feminine.

33. What kept you sane?
My guy and my friends.

34. Which celebrity/public figure did you fancy the most?
There was no new person that piqued my fancy.  I am a loyal fan.  I heart the same people every year.

35. What political issue stirred you the most?
The elections this year were riveting.

36. Who did you miss?
My best friend, who lives far away, my brother, my grandparents. It was so wonderful to have them all there at the wedding.

37. Who was the best new person you met?
There are probably a few but my memory is rubbish.

38. Tell us a valuable life lesson you learned in 2012:
That it's ok to trust some people.

39. Quote a song lyric that sums up your year
"It's a new dawn, it's a new day, it's a new life, and I'm feeling good.

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

pins and shoes

Pinterest has made me realize that I am not nearly as crafty, stylish, designer-y, and chef-like as I could be.  I have so, so, so many things pinned that I WILL MAKE but instead of making them, I add more and more things to the board of THINGS I WILL MAKE and now I'm beginning to feel guilty.  Like, Pinterest has really high expectations of me and I'm not sure that I can live up to them.   I did just make some iced coffee so I'm not totally useless.  Just mostly.
The next two months are going to be bananas.  The wedding (still on, yay me and committing to things!) and moving across town is going to be one thing.  Then there's squishing in life with a guy whose style in home decor has a lot to do with the Boston Red Sox and a kid who thinks 'clean your room' means 'spread your blanket over the junk'.   There's going to be a whole lot of adjusting to things.

These shoes.  That picture does not do them justice - they are shiny and sparkly and I wear them all the time, with all the things.  It had been raining in Philadelphia when I was there last weekend and I needed sturdier shoes.  At Macy's, it had come down to these and a pair of nude flats when I spotted a woman in the shoe department that I'd noticed earlier, at Fine Jewelery.  This lady was amazing.  Over six feet tall, gloriously bald, perfectly made up, she was wearing a brightly patterned floral silk blouse and wide leg dark blue slacks and I fell in love.  I was standing in front of the mirror, the gold shoe on one foot and the beige shoe on the other, when she sat in the chair next to me and, even though I knew I'd take the gold shoes, even though I knew which pair she'd choose, I had to ask...  Her response was delightful. Of course it was the gold, "All day, every day".  

Thursday, May 31, 2012

Rings and things

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In May, these things happened:
There was a family day, celebrating Mother's Day and my father's birthday, and it was lovely.
Someone tried to stab me and after they'd swung and missed, they cut their own throat and that was not so lovely.
I worked quite a lot and sort of forgot that I was going to be getting married in August and only realized I had less than three months (!) to plan the thing last week.
I started taking some classes on Tuesday nights with a very lovely group of people (there is one notable exception to the lovely people in this class and we shall call that exception Francis.  I am actually delighted that Francis is part of my class because her irrational dislike of me was so sudden and so intense that after the initial astonishment, I was very happy to realize that I'd stumbled onto a Shiny New Nemesis.  Francis is very smug about her role as top student in the class and very unhappy to find that I'm not so bad, myself.  Wheee!)  I'm not going to explain just yet what the class is for because I have a very bad habit of dropping out of things and so I want to see if I'm going to stick this out before I get all chatty about it.
There was a trip to Philadelphia, another proposal, and another engagement ring (which I love).
I may have had a little something to do with choosing this ring but J had me gloomily convinced that he wasn't going to buy it.  It was a marvelous, romantic surprise.

Wednesday, April 18, 2012

About that time

We were thisclose to buying tickets for the flight to Hawaii. I found tickets two nights ago that were nearly two hundred dollars less expensive than they have been for a week and I did not buy them and today the tickets, they are gone. I am a foolish, foolish girl.
We're going to have a place to stay and that is going to save us money but weddings, they ain't cheap and I need to save a lot more every other place I can.

I have recently purchased my very first blender and today, attempted my very first Healthy Smoothie. I did not follow any recipe and I'm not even going to tell you what I put into the smoothie because I'm embarrassed. It occurred to me as I was chopping and dumping fruits and vegetables into the blender that these could possibly combine very badly but then I thought (again, embarrassingly) that all of these things taste great alone. Together they would be AWESOME. I was wrong and it was a disaster. The first two swallows were sort of strange, like, bad strange but not quite bad enough to call off the whole project. I filled the rest of the glass, cleaned my equipment, settled on the couch with my greyish/brownish/greenish smoothie, took another swallow, and that was all she wrote. I had to dump the rest down the drain. It only now occurs to me that I should have poured it on the plants outside. Or is that botanical cannibalism? I don't know these things.
Tomorrow, I try again.

Monday, April 16, 2012

Four months...

Has anyone else noticed the time-suck that has happened to 2012? I could have sworn that last month was January. How did April happen so fast? And it's halfway over! August is just barreling towards us and I am woefully unprepared.
There was a bridal shower and it was fun. Here are some of the girls that made it. There were games and mimosas and wedding gowns made out of toilet paper and everyone agreed that it was a great success. My maid of honor was an amazing hostess. She's the one in red.No blondes allowed at any party of mine.

OK, not really, it just worked out that way. There was one blonde invited but she didn't make it. Not that I need to justify anything to you.

The dog and the cat are both doing well.
Wow. I really don't have anything to say and I was certain that I had lots to say just an hour ago.
I may have to come back to this later.

Friday, March 23, 2012

Another one bites the dust

David and I have had another birthday. Turns out the things are totally unavoidable, especially when you are my brother or myself, who firmly believe our birthdays are right up there with Christmas or Give Me Presents Day (September 18th). 
I went up to San Francisco to spend a few days with David, accompanied by the Doctor, and J joined us later. We had a fantastic time. Because I'd rented a car, we were able to take a day trip to Tomales Bay.  Many oysters were eaten.  Many photos were taken. Many good times were had.
A diner-themed birthday party in the living room.
A wacky German diplomat staying in the studio. We bonded and now I have a place to stay in Berlin.
The Doctor's total, all-consuming fear of everything in San Francisco.
Successful thrift store shopping (worth mention because this is extremely rare for me. I'm usually overwhelmed by the experience and shut down immediately).
A birthday get-together in the divey-est bar in Chinatown where there was an entire Chinese family hunched over one end of the bar, drinking whiskey from coffee cups they'd brought from home.
Dinner with rarely-seen younger cousins, both of whom have grown into charming young ladies.
The temporary loan of several extremely awesome cameras I can't wait to play with.
There's probably more. I'll think of it once I've got photos done.
More later! 

Friday, January 13, 2012

moustaches, manicures, and massive cameras.

They are amazing. My ladyfriend Erin offered to treat me to a manicure to thank me for doing her headshots and then I was addicted.
That first time it wasn't so fancy. Sparkly and pretty, not complex.
Then I did my own a couple of times because after that, my nails, they had to be FANCY.
That's my Christmas self-applied manicure. J said it looked 'ghetto'. I disagreed. Shiny red and sparkly silver? That, friends, is FESTIVE.
Today's manicure was the best. I convinced Erin to get her nails done the same way and now the two of us are sporting these babies:
I am so happy.

I got a camera in the mail on Wednesday, and not just any camera. This one is a huge, old-fashioned, large-format, very heavy, many pieced Linhof Technika IV. It's a thing of beauty.
That's just the body. I'm supposed to attach half a dozen other bits to that before I can take any pictures. And the pictures I will take? I will have to learn to develop them myself.
As far as I've been able to discover, these large format cameras are primarily to shoot landscapes, like this one by A.C. OlsenThey are gorgeous and landscapes are easier to shoot than people (they don't move quite as much and are less self-conscious) but peoples is my favorite and the ones I've found that are shot with this camera are lovely.
by Doris Markou
This camera is brilliant and terrifying and a whole job unto itself. It was an early wedding gift from J's father and I'm going to have to present him with some awfully nice photos by way of thanks.