Sunday, November 21, 2010


I have had many thoughts lately. Many thoughts that have found their way to my computer, but not yet to my blog. I've been thinking about friendships. And how I'm both really good and really bad at being a friend. I've been thinking about babies. And how I'm ready, but terrified. I've been thinking about what I want for Christmas, since I've been repeatedly asked for my wish list from my in-laws, and I feel weird making a list for them of things I want. But I'll do it because I need this book. I've been thinking about several ideas for a paper I need to write in the next week, but you don't want me to blog about those thoughts. Trust me.

I just had one of those lovely Sundays that usually elude me. It seems like I always get to the end of my weekend and feel disappointed that I didn't use my time better. However, after a very hectic week, I decided to let myself relax. So, today, after making waffles for Mikael and seeing him off to work, I took time to stare out the window and daydream, transplanted my houseplants, made a new succulent garden (in a sad attempt to keep the spirit of California alive in our home), and made cookies to send my sister (since she won't be coming home for Thanksgiving). It seems I had forgotten what excellent company I am.

This evening I've been enjoying the couch in my pajamas and picking and choosing songs to play as loudly as I please, fighting the urge to lie down on the floor and have a good cry. I know. This sounds troubling, but I'm a melancholic soul, so sometimes, I just feel like I need to revert back to my melodramatic teenage self and play my favorite song on repeat until the tears come. But, here's the catch - I have nothing to cry about (other than that stack of ungraded papers). And, tonight, I found this both comforting and unsettling. It's like I don't know how to cope unless I'm coping.

So, how long does it take to get used to happy?

Friday, November 12, 2010

my week in objects

One of my favorite bloggers often posts photos of several things that made her week. I always find these posts charming, so I thought I'd give it a try. If you'd like to see where I got this idea from, please visit Reading my Tea Leaves.

I give you, five things that made my week.

1. These fall leaves
*because I collected them as I walked home from campus every day this week. Now they are piled on the dining room table, reminding me of childhood collections of rocks and pressed flowers.

2. The sun!
* because I got to wear two of my favorite skirts again before the cold weather. And because fall leaves are even prettier when the sun shines through them.

3. This plant
* because I bought it for myself at Trader Joe's last Sunday, and I've enjoyed watching bloom all week, turning into this:

4. This purply/grey nail polish
*because it was a new color for me. And, since I spend most of my time with my computer, it's nice to look down at my hands and see something colorful and pretty.

5. This sheet of paper
* because it is my program of study form, and it says I only have four required classes left to take before my comps.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Making Plans

Mikael has been working full-time for about a month now. Unfortunately, the only job he could find was one he didn't want (supervising juvenile "delinquents") and one that requires he work an eight-hour evening shift. Considering neither one of us has had health or dental benefits for over a year, he took it anyway. This means that several days a week, we only see each other for a couple hours in the morning and maybe an hour or so (before I pass out) at night.

Initially, I thought this would be okay, or maybe even good. Not having him around in the evenings (at least those that I don't have a evening class on) would help me focus on my ever-expanding to-do list. And this has been the case (except when there's good TV on). What I didn't foresee is it putting us in a bit of a rut. We've started spending our mornings catching up on sleep instead of catching up with each other, or eating a late breakfast while watching Price is Right, which means our conversation revolves around guessing prices and making fun of Drew Carey's bow ties. So, this morning, I woke up a bit earlier than usual, got myself dressed and even curled my hair. I then woke Mikael up and told him we were going to IHOP, something he loves to do but doesn't get to do too often since he's married to a vegan(ish).

While we were beginning our meal, a family came in and sat in a nearby booth with their three little girls (I'd guess 5, 3 and a year old). As they walked by, I said, "So that's pretty much your worst nightmare." And, he laughed and said yeah, and then did an impression of our future daughter saying, "Look Daddy. Look how slutty I am," because he has this horrible idea stuck in his head that all teenage girls will be a father's worst nightmare and sluts - big big sluts. I'm sure that he will be fine with whatever we end up having in the end, and I'm sure if we do have girls, he will be a huge pile of mush. After we talked about this a bit, somehow the conversation evolved into how we hope to raise our kids. We talked about education (private vs. public, christian vs. adventist), discipline, how to motivate them, and so on. These are things that we might have talked about once in a while in the past, but this time it was real. These were real plans, real strategies we were making together.

After finishing our meal, we headed to Lowe's and bought a few perennials to round out the garden before the snow falls and then mapped out where to put them before he had to go to work. And, as he kissed me goodbye, he even complemented me on my hair.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

A Long Fall

I am completely brain dead tonight. After conferencing with students and attending two classes with my crappy drafts, I have no energy left for a witty post. So, I give you a few choice photos Mikael took the last time we were at my parents' house. This is the house I grew up in, and I hope it never changes.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Smelling the Roses, if I could

Tonight I am working on two huge projects. Okay, not huge, but two papers that are due tomorrow. Luckily, both of them only need to be in "draft" form. However, I am now very concerned about how my concept of what constitutes a draft may differ from that of my teacher and/or fellow graduate students. I'm tired of those pesky Master's students making me look like a slacker. My only excuse is, I'm teaching! It's so time consuming! When, really, I just watched a lot of Parks and Recreation episodes this weekend instead of writing these papers.

Anyway, this is rambly, but I've been writing for the last five hours straight. So, the point of my post is that (1) I am a horrible doctoral student. And, (2) I am sick again. AND, I'm holding one-on-one conferences with half of my students tomorrow. I feel like that's kind of mean - to get them sick, and then dock their grades for being absent. Hmmm...

(3)In other news, this evening, as I was pounding away at my computer, at about 6:45 my whole study lit up. A bright light was hitting my drawn shades and making my study glow, so I glanced out between the blinds and saw that the sun was starting to set and was making one last ditch effort to show off. Now, on any other day (when I don't have tons of work to do) I would've just sat back down at the computer and proceeded to surf the Internet for new videos of dogs swimming with dolphins (!!!!!!!!!), but tonight I decided to go outside and investigate the glowy sun. It was gorgeous, and I took a crappy photo with my phone.

Today's lesson: If I could get a PhD in procrastination, I would have my diploma by now.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Peter Pan Envy

I just had one of those really surreal moments where you almost feel like you're high. Like when you really think about your name, and you say it over and over until it loses all of its meaning, and then your whole sense of identity shifts because your name is meaningless. Please, someone tell me you know what I'm talking about.

Well, I just had one of those moments, and it was brought on by one of the most mundane things. I was putting away a bunch of spices I had left out on the counter last night. I made this soup, and it was a-maz-ing. So, I was putting away the cumin and paprika when all of a sudden I stopped and thought, "This can't be my spice rack. There are way too many spices in here. This looks like my mom's cupboard." And, then it dawned on me - I'm a grown up. I make meals on a regular basis. I go grocery shopping and pay all my own bills. I bought these spices with my own money. And, holy crap, I even know what kinds of recipes cream of tartar and cumin are used in.

I'm not sure why this is significant. And, maybe I'm just writing about it because I have to write something, but these little oh-crap-I'm-a-grown-up moments have been happening a lot lately. And, when they do, I get all weirded out and start to really think about why I am where I am. All those years I blamed not getting married on Mikael, but maybe I didn't want to get married either... or, I could be making big money if I'd stuck with that marketing department in L.A., but apparently I'd rather suffer through reading esoteric rhetorical theory and writing research proposals than actually commit to a commute and a 401K.

Hmmm . . .

Monday, November 1, 2010

NaBloPoMo or I am feeling ambitious

Right now, this sad little blog has five posts on it. Five. That's just not good. I meant for this space to be a place where I could document these early months of my marriage, lament about the rigors of grad school, and try to keep a record of life in the middle of nowhere Indiana, which I have been told I will feel nostalgic for after we leave. Ha!

So, I'm going to try to participate in NaBloPoMo this year. Here I am, just a few minutes shy of being too late, but I'm here, and that's the point.

This could be really good or really bad. We'll see.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

Midterm Funk

The last couple of weeks have been tough. I remember saying to Mikael at the beginning of the school year that we should plan something for October, something fun to do that breaks our routine. I knew that once the wedding afterglow wore off, we didn't have any more trips planned, and we finished decorating the house, I would need something to perk me up. But, we failed to plan anything. So, the inevitable happened - I got behind in my school work, started staring blankly out the windows for long periods of time, and generally feeling like maybe I should just drop out and open a bakery or flower shop. This happens periodically. I guess it's one of the hazards of being rather melancholic. And, it doesn't help that Mikael has started a new job and works nights, leaving me with many hours to listlessly roam the house.

In order to get out of my funk, I put my school stuff aside for two days and didn't even let myself think about any of it. No papers to grade. No articles to read. I then proceeded to bake. I made vegan chocolate chip cookies, a spinach potato quiche (with legitimately free range eggs), two loaves of oat meal/wheat bread, and a chocolate hazelnut cheesecake for my friend Jenn's birthday. I also went to Lowes and bought a bunch of perennials for our yard and mapped out how to arrange them. After doing all of this, I felt a million times better.

I've always known that I'm creative, that trying different projects and crafts and recipes makes me happy, but I hadn't realized how this might actually be something I need. I've heard people talk about having a need to create, and my response has always been similar to how I react to people who say that pot really helps them with their art - with an emphatic, "yeah, right." But, maybe I do need to be creative from time to time in order to be better prepared for all those other things I have to do - like write lame reading journals, grade an endless pile of freshman papers, read articles on rhetorical theory, and stay awake for evening classes that don't seem to go anywhere.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Like a Beaver or a Bee

Yeah, so I've been busy. I can't believe it's been so long since I started this little blog - with such good intentions. So, a lot has happened, and I can't possibly summarize all of it in a few neat paragraphs - so, bullet points will have to do.
  • The last couple weeks planning the wedding went fairly well. I now consider myself an expert at DIY wedding stuff. I made (with some help) all the floral arrangements, and I mean ALL of them, tissue paper flowers to hang in the reception tent, my birdcage veil and we used iTunes for our music, made our own playlist, my dad made an ice cream "cart" for the reception, the list goes on and on. It was probably a bit more stressful this way, but we got endless compliments on all the details, so, to me, it paid off.
  • Okay, I'm biased, but I have to say our wedding was the most beautiful and personal wedding I've ever been to. Everything went so well; it was a beautiful day. Perfect. Out of everything, I definitely got the most compliments on our vows. We each wrote our own, and they turned out to say exactly what we both wanted to say and what we both needed to hear as we began our marriage. I had more than one of our male guests come up to me afterward and tell me he cried.
  • Marriage is awesome. No big surprises. He's just with me all the time, which can be annoying when he chooses to watch Bonanza at 3:00 pm, and I need to read for class, but if that's my biggest problem, then I guess I'm pretty lucky. (Also, Bonanza? WTF?)
  • I have started a new school year and was given two weeks to pull myself together to teach freshman comp. I got a teaching spot at the last minute, which is really good for me (and my bank account), but it was a bit stressful. The good news for those who care to read this blog is I tend to blog more as a means to procrastinate, and nothing makes me procrastinate more than a pile of essays waiting to be graded.
There, now you're caught up. I haven't had any major wiferly epiphanies yet. The closest I've
come is realizing that I feel like I need to feed him. And, really, I don't want to be that traditional about this whole thing (and I know he doesn't care one way or the other), but I find myself taking it personally when he remarks on how he needs to gain weight and needs to eat more. There's also the fact that, when I do cook for us, it's healthy and vegan, so his chances of putting on weight are pretty slim. So, I'm trying to let go of this apparent social brainwashing I've received over the years that makes me think it's my duty to feed my husband.

Also, I'm having a bit of an identity crisis with my name, but maybe that's a saga for another time. As in, I still haven't officially made any changes to it, and now I'm wondering if I want to at all.

Friday, May 28, 2010

Back for Good

Hello, friends,

So sorry for the lengthy absence. But here are all my excuses, and they're actually good ones this time:
  • I finished the hardest semester of my life. It was bad. Really bad. But now I am officially a second year doctoral student. It's nice to not be a newbie anymore.
  • Mikael finally proposed on April 18. It was wonderful, and not really a surprise at all, but it was perfect for us. The photo above was taken a few minutes after. Which means...
  • I've been wedding planning. We're planning a July 25th wedding. We figure, we've been together for eight years, who needs a long engagement?
  • I'm taking a summer class. It's easy, but has occupied my evenings.
  • However, I have been sewing, and I will have new items in my Etsy shop next weekend. My shop is in sad shape right now, but it's about to expand!
So there's your update. I shall return next week with actual quality posts.

Monday, April 5, 2010

Helloooooo Spring

So, things have been a little hectic here at the GMG headquarters. I've been buried in school work for the past few weeks. I'm sorry to have abandoned this blog for so long, but I'm back! I may not post every day for the next four weeks, but I will try my hardest to get back in the game.

Tomorrow I will announce the winner of my drawing (from forever ago), so come back and see who gets a fancy new pillow cover. I haven't been crafting too much, but my sister and I did start making paper garlands a couple weeks ago while we watched TV. I'll be adding some to my Etsy shortly.

So, life is crazy, but really good. The sun is out. My tulips are blooming in my yard. And other exciting things are in the works. (wink wink)

Monday, March 1, 2010

Monday Morning Heart Warmer

Since I left Maddy at my parents' house for these last couple weeks, so I could take my trip to Orlando last weekend, I've been rather lonely for her. After watching some YouTube videos featuring dogs, I feel a bit better. And, well, this one... this one made me cry. So cute.

Friday, February 26, 2010

Solitary Weekend

photo via weheartit

This weekend I am on my own again. Since I'm headed home and then to California next Thursday/Friday, I've decided to stay at school and get some school work done. Of course, I have other things on my list too - such as my first attempt at vegan baking. Strawberry muffins anyone?

I also plan to make some new items for my Etsy shop and thoroughly clean my house. Not very exciting, but what else is one to do when the forecast is calling for snow all weekend? So ready for spring break!

Hope your weekend is more exciting than mine!

Wednesday, February 24, 2010

Counting Down to Palm Trees

I have been counting down on a calendar on my fridge to March 5th. After this long winter, I am very ready for some warm weather. Mikael and I have decided to take a trip to Southern California for my spring break. There are so many things we want to do, most of which include seeing our friends from when we lived out there. However, with my crazy semester, I'm looking forward to. . .

Laying on the beach at Old Man's while Mikael surfs.

And reading this:

And finishing this:

Then, heading to Pasadena for some Pinkberry, which I will definitely break my new vegan diet to enjoy (going strong for a full week now).

Of course, there are many more things I want to do, including Jamba Juice, Vromans, and so many favorite restaurants, but who knows what we'll be able to fit into five days.

Can't. Wait.

all photos via weheartit

Monday, February 22, 2010

Celebratory giveaway

Hello, friends,
I have had a busy couple of weeks. I turned 31, celebrated my dad's 60th, spent Valentine's Day with Mikael, wrote two papers, and now I'm in Florida, visiting my friend Jessica. So, I failed to find the time for the past couple weeks to post here.

However, I have recently had some moderate Etsy success with the new items I posted a couple weeks ago. And, to celebrate, I'm doing another giveaway. It'll be interesting to see which of my four readers wins this time! Ceri was the lucky girl the last time, and she just wrote the nicest post about the goodies I sent her.

This time, I'll giveaway one pillow cover and throw in surprise. I won't say which pillow cover, 'cause for Ceri, I just asked her what colors she decorated with and picked out something I thought would match, which was a lot more fun.

Leave a comment to enter. Tweet or blog about it, provide your link, and get two entries. You have 'til Friday at noon to enter. Good luck!

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

My birthday wish list

My birthday is a week from today. And all I want is this:

I hope he's enjoying keeping me in suspense. Ugh!

Monday, February 8, 2010

Weekend Report

So, my weekend at home was a success. Even though my back still hurts from shoveling my entire driveway all by myself, I still managed to get much sewing (and reading and writing for school) done.

I started off making some pillow covers to send my sister in her Valentine's Day care package:

Then, since I happened to notice the home decor fabric was on sale, I bought a little and made some new items to put in my Etsy shop, which I've been meaning to devote more time to for months.

I also updated my Etsy shop with some earrings I made over the summer and relisted some magnets. After getting things up and running Saturday night, I had three sales right away. Very productive.

Here are some of my latest creations:

Friday, February 5, 2010

Four Days at Home

I am on my own this weekend. Actually, it's by design, so I can get a lot done and not have to do much during Valentine's/Birthday weekend next week. Big snow is coming my way. I'm in the blue, which is heavy snow. I'm fully stocked on groceries. Made my final run to the library yesterday. And have a basket of fabric for my weekend craft project.

One item I made sure to purchase before my weekend seclusion was a new Moka Pot coffee maker. I got one this summer, but I recently broke the handle off and had to toss it. I've been trying to curb my Starbucks dependency, so after my (and Maddy's) waffles this morning, I made myself a latte. If you are a coffee drinker, I highly recommend getting a Moka Pot. They're pretty easy to use and make excellent espresso within minutes. I also use an electric milk frother to complete the full, foamy effect. Also, I've purchased both of mine from TJMaxx or Marshalls for about 10 bucks. That's pretty much three drinks from Starbucks.

Hope you have a relaxing and warm weekend!

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Five Things to Help You Survive Winter

I hate the winter. Hate. It. I have no idea where we're headed in three years when I graduate, but these long winter days have me checking the MLA job list in Southern California every week. Here are five things that help ease my winter pain.

At the beginning of winter, I purchased this heating pad off Etsy. It's come in handy several times over the last couple months. I like to put it at the foot of my bed to warm my feet when I first get in bed. It's stuffed with rice. You warm it in the microwave, so you don't have to worry about turning it off like an electric heating pad.

I've been a long time fan of this lotion from Kiehls. I have one in my backpack and one on my bedstand. It has a slight medicinal smell, but it's worth it.

I've never been a big tea fan, but I love this tea from Tazo. I've started drinking this in the evenings to warm up and to ease my hunger without eating something fatty (spring break in four weeks. eek!).

I resisted for a long time, but I finally got some uggs for Christmas. I have no idea why I waited so long. They make my other boots seem like lead weights. Mikael hates them, but I hate his winter facial hair, so we're even.

Also, I highly recommend you get one of these:

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

More Etsy Love

Mikael's parents are in the process of purchasing a new home in Tennessee to move to when they retire in July. With this is mind, I got his mom this return address stamp for Christmas:

You can see more of them at the Note Trunk Etsy shop. I'm planning on getting one for myself, but not until my name makes some changes, if you know what I mean...

Friday, January 29, 2010

My second favorite golden

A friend sent this to me a while ago, and I've taken to watching it when I'm in a bad mood. It helps.

Also, Maddy told me she totally could've learned to surf, too. She just didn't have a board. Missed opportunity I guess.

Have a wonderful weekend!

Thursday, January 28, 2010

Five Beauty Musts (at least for me)

New idea - five things every Thursday. We'll see how creative I get, but for today, I'm starting small - my top five beauty must-haves.

Okay, so maybe this is an obvious choice, being that everyone I know uses Bare Minerals these days, but I can't ignore their wonderful foundation. I was introduced to it about four years ago, and I haven't looked back. It works like a charm, and I really don't feel like I'm wearing makeup.

This summer, my sister and I both got hooked on this eyeliner from Ulta. We both like the dark brown shade, but I'm anxious to add a few more shades to my collection. I promise, you will not see a line on your top lid, which is such an unsightly problem, if you ask me.

One of the items I spent my Christmas Ulta gift card on was Ooh La La Lift from Benefit. I've been using it for three weeks, and I'm sure it'll become a permanent fixture in my makeup bag.

I got Gucci Flora for Christmas, and I love it. It's the perfect smell for me. It just fits.

I think I've mentioned before that I use Philosophy's Purity Made Simple facial cleanser. Well, fine if I did; I just love it that much. It has a subtle lemony sent and always leaves my face feeling super clean. I love everything from Philosophy, especially their shower gels, and their perfume Amazing Grace is my summer scent.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

For my sister

If I had tons of money, I would get this dog for my sister. Oh, the cuteness.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010


When I returned home from my weekend at my parents', I found my latest Etsy purchase in my mailbox. I recently purchased this for my study. I've been working on redecorating it for the last couple months (slowly), and I will make sure to post a photo of my finished masterpiece once I finish making a pillow for my reading chair.

I thought this poster was very appropriate for my current state of existence. You can see more of these adorable posters in the Etsy shop By Order of the Crown. And read about the history of this poster here.

Monday, January 25, 2010

It's Monday!

I, for one, had an incredibly productive weekend. This is probably largely due my spending the weekend at my parents', where there is no Internet, combined with Mikael's ridiculously busy work weekend.

This morning I am coveting this laptop case:

I didn't get a new case when I got my new MacBook nearly a year ago, so maybe I'll have to get this for myself... for my birthday that's in three weeks. Ick.

Thursday, January 21, 2010


I've been intrigued by first ladies lately. This is likely due to a paper I'm thinking of writing for my Contemporary Rhetoric class. I've got tons of ideas floating around in my head. I'd love to do something with Jackie Kennedy and fashion, but I have many other ideas too.

I'd also love to write about Michelle Obama, but it's still a bit early. I wish I'd been one of the tourists at the White House yesterday who got a surprise greeting. How awesome would that be? And to meet Bo the dog too!

Tuesday, January 19, 2010

Aahhhhh... long weekends

So, I'm off to my Lit. Theory class to discuss Aristotle. I have a feeling, after much relaxing this weekend with Mikael, this might be me in class:
See more cute sleepiness here.

Friday, January 15, 2010

And... we're back

Hi friends!

I'm officially back to my old routine, and, yes, that includes my neglected blog (s?). It's been a crazy week. For today, I'd like to share with you a link. Rachel over at Lovely Clusters has compiled a nice list of businesses that are donating to the relief efforts in Haiti. I followed one of her links to this lovely shop on Etsy. I purchased this from their Haiti section.

Isn't it the cutest? I love the crown shaped clasp. An announcement on their main page says they'll be adding more items to their Haiti section soon. And, even if you don't buy something from the Haiti section, they still donate 15% of each purchase to charity:water.

Thursday, January 7, 2010


Sorry for the long absence, but it's not over yet. I still have the weekend before I return to my own home, where high speed Internet abounds. I'm just checking in to say hello.

I hope the New Year is going well for all of you. So far so good here, but then again, I haven't started classes yet.

The lovely shot on the left is from Mikael's latest project. He's taking photos of all his friends and family in this ridiculous hat. I've assisted him some, and it's been amazing to see each person's personality come out as they get used to wearing the doofy hat. This is one of many of me; I'm the test subject as he gets the lights ready.

Check back next week. Things will be back to normal around Tuesday.