Friday, December 16, 2011

Most Christmas songs don't make me cry but...

...This one, as of lately, does. I have to quickly skip the track on the CD before the recordings of the military members serving in Iraq and their family at home start playing. This song has nothing to do with Jesus birth and it is usually not one of my favorites, but the way that this version in cooperates the military is beautiful.

JoJo is only in Washington state and hasn't yet deployed, but... still.
I'll be home for Christmas, but he won't and it is...hard. I would like to hope for next year but...who knows where either of us will be. That is sort of a difficult way to have to live life, but, as always, it is so worth it. For right now I am just making the best with what we've got and counting the days until we (his mom, 2 sisters and I) fly out in February!

Monday, December 5, 2011

Though they never thought it was possible...

Sometimes it is scary how alike JoJo and I are, especially in the way we think and in our absolutely bizarre sense of humor...

During our mini-photoshoot my mother says something along the lines of "You need to stand up straight!"

Seeing as she directed her comment at neither of us in particular, we both stood up straighter. And I mean straight to the extreme, complete with shoulders yanked up awkwardly, necks extra extended, eye brows up, and weird faces to match. At the exact same time.We didn't coordinate or pose this. We both happen to be odd enough that this is what we thought "stand up straight" should be acted out as. This is simply how our minds work.

A moment later, after capturing this shot,  my mother goes  
"...I cannot believe there are somehow 
two of you in the world..."

And she is right. My whole life I never imagined anyone could be as strange as me. Ask anyone who knows me at all, and they will tell you, I am pretty...unique. But JoJo somehow is as strange (and/or sometimes strange-er), and it is utterly perfect.

Friday, November 18, 2011

Bolton Notch "Flag Rock" Hike

Around where I live there is a highway. And over, off to the side of that highway is a park/hiking area. A large rock formation there is kind of a local symbol. Shortly after 9/11 someone went up there, to the well grafittied cliff area, and spray painted a massive American flag where it can clearly be seen from the highway route. It's pretty cool.

When JoJo was home, he and I hiked up there (with the intention of adding to the graffiti, but the local hardware store was closed). Normally it is a quick, easy, like 15 minute hike up the trail that leads to the rocks, but due to the snow storm and a lot of downed trees it became more of a wild, slippery, bush wacking type hike. Interesting indeed.

I hauled my camera, remote, and tripod up through the snow so we could take some pictures amongst the rocks, foliage, and graffiti. That too turned into an interesting experience, but I did get a couple of good shots. Playing photographer and photo subject on rocky terrain isn't as easy as it sounds, folks.
*JoJo gets photo credit here, as I was still setting up.

JoJo makes a lot of fantastic faces (as do I, as you may know).
I term this one the "I'm Horribly Polish and Sarcastic but still Awfully Cute" face. Facial expressions such as these run in his Polish family.

Apparently we can't look at each other and be serious...which isn't really a problem, as we like laughing.
Besides being cute, I really enjoy these pictures. I was going to edit out the black graffitti behind our legs (just distracting, not bad), but as I was looking at it closer I realized it says "Adrean- San Antonio, TX". Now I don't know any Andreans, but I know I sure addressed a lot letters headed to Lackland AFB in San Antonio, TX during JoJo's months of BMT ("boot camp"). That strange coincidence made me smile, so I left the graffiti there.
View of the highway, lake and trees below.

Since we wound up lacking in spray paint (and by the way, were this a building or location of grand importance, I would NEVER spray paint it. But this rock's main purpose is to be graffited. And its only a rock. I don't think its really vandalism in this case...) we improvised. 

Obviously, the next best thing to spray painting your names some place is doing it old school and carving them somewhere. And seeing as this was a life long dream of mine, I wouldn't allow us to miss his opportunity.
At times like these, I am very glad he always has a knife in his pocket.
Names carved in a tree.
(another check on my "things to do before the end of forever" list. and yes, I do have one written out. And yes, it is called that.)

We would have hiked around more, but the fallen snow and trees made it a little bit treaturous. But I am glad we got to at least do a little bit of woodland exploration. I cannot wait to get out to Tacoma to see him and get some REAL hiking and outdoorsy stuff done there!

STILL more pictures of my time with JoJo to come! Hopefully you all aren't sick of us yet! If somehow you are, just humor me, its a once every few months experience and I cherish the time I get to spend with him.

Tuesday, November 15, 2011

Boston is...for lovers?

Finally, now that school has calmed down just a little (the huge week and a half power outage we had over here in New England left on really behind), I would like to post more about JoJo and I and our adventures for the 10 days he was home.

One of the things we were able to do (the day before Albert the Freak Nor'easter) was take a day trip up to Boston. Boston is one of my favorite cities, mostly for the history and the beautiful building (and the Italian North End) and he had never been outside of Fenway, so a trip was certainly necessary.

We mostly just wandered around, taking pictures and enjoying each other's company. It was a bit of a chilly day, but overall we really enjoyed it and had a lovely time. The worst part ended up being the 3+ hour trip home in severe traffic (it would have normally taken us just over an hour and a half).

Anyway, Here are some pictures:

We ate lunch in the Boston Common's Public Garden.
(he is sort of mid talking/chewing in this photo, but I think he is still cute. And so is his hat, which I clearly made)

Then we pretended we were innocent tourist who didn't know about the DON'T FEED THE ANIMALS AND BIRDS RULE. 
Rules are overrated anyway...
Come haven't lived until you've fed some critters from your hand.

 We encountered the park's fattest squirrel and he and JoJo became fast friends.
After the squirrels we moved onto winged things...
Once we had gathered a crowd of about 50 ducks, pigeons, swans and otherwise we quickly remembered the rules and then walked away before we were seen as the guilty bird gatherers.

Then, leaving the Commons, some Asian tourists though we were so cute they offered to take our picture!

Then we wandered around the Quincy Market area and I kept taking angled photos of buildings 
JoJo was very supportive of my architectural photography interests and would say "You CAN stop walking to take a picture, you know. I'll stop!"
The middle photo was actually a building he noticed and he didn't find it at all odd when I got down on my knees to take the picture. He is so great.

We walked along/sat down at the harbor for quite a while and watched this huge boat appear.

Then I took him into the North End- "Little Italy."
He got a real kick out of seeing "Real, live Italians." I got a kick out of his realization of just how true some stereotypes can be. The two of us have a very odd (and freakishly similar) sense of humor. Do not be concerned.

Before leaving, I made sure to take him to my favorite spot- aka Cannoli HEAVEN- Mike's Pastry, on Hanover Street.

 We came out of there with 3 cannolis- one for each of us, and one to share later. (Peanut Butter, Espresso and Strawberry.) So. Good.

After a fair amount of wandering and assessing almost every restaurant in Downtown Boston, we settled on eating dinner at Max&Dylan's, in the theater district.
Customary "I'm looking at the camera and this is my excited face" look. 
He is such a goof. A goof who makes me very happy.

After all this we drove home in the aforementioned traffic and went to a bonfire at a friends house. Very nice day. Boston is such a great, clean, beautiful city and I love the mix of the old and the new. 

I highly recommend it for day trips (much more so than New York City. I think people like one or the other, and we are Boston people over here). Any recommendations from you guys of fun stuff to do in the Boston, or even in the Mass, CT, New England ish area? I would love to hear suggestions! JoJo and I are always looking to cram in as much fun stuff as possible whenever he is home on leave. 

More pictures of our adventures to come!

Friday, November 11, 2011

Happy Veteran's day.

 Thank you all for your service and sacrifice.

At this point in my life, I appreciate you and what you are doing or have done now more than ever.

I know the military and those who have served don't always get the credit or the treatment they deserve, and people's blog posts, facebook statuses, or free lunch at a local restaurant do not in anyway make up for that, but please know you ARE appreciated. Whether Veteran or Active Duty or anywhere in between, what you are doing/have done and what you stand for is incredible. You deserve honor and respect. So, thank you so very much.

Special thanks goes out to this guy right here. Thank YOU for your sacrifices and all you do. Thank you for all that you do for me. I am so proud of you. It's an honor to stand with you through this.

Sunday, November 6, 2011

Here I am again...more in love than ever...

Dear Bloglandrians,

Here I am, back on blogger, after my wonderful (and very...unusual) visit with my Airman, JoJo.

After graduating from Tech School in Gulfport, Mississippi he came home on leave for ten days. No matter what time they give him, it is never long enough. But still, spending time with him, no matter what we are doing, is the most fantastic thing in the world. I picked him up at the airport on the 25th (there is nothing quite like jumping into the arms of a man in uniform whom you have been missing for 6 months), spent a great 10 days with him, and then returned him, teary-eyed to the Airport early on Friday the 4th. He is now settling into his new base, McChord AFB in Tacoma, Washington. He is very happy with the location and cannot wait to begin his career in Civil/Structural Engineering. Other than the fact he is now 3 time zones behind me and about 3,000 miles away, his new place sounds wonderful and we are both very excited about it. I cannot wait to get out there to visit him! Distance is hard, but believe you me, this man is worth it.

I will post more about our adventures (such as being without power for a week, due to a freak Nor'easter in October) and also share some of the pictures we were able to take.

For today, now that I finally have power and internet, I just wanted to give you a quick little update on how things were going and share some pictures of my incredibly handsome man with you.


ps: I completely love this guy, in case you cannot tell.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Not like I am excited for anything...

#1 - yes, I am still alive, and I do realize I have a blog. I just also realize that I have an education to get and work to do
#2- JoJo, the super fantastic Airman boyfriend comes home in one week. I haven't seen him in six's not like I am excited or anything. I guess I have nothing better to do than count down each individual second until the time I pick him up at the airport next week. With this countdownr. No big deal

#3- I was lying. I am pretty much excited out of my mind for the 10 wonderful days I will get to spend with him. There will be pictures, I promise!

Wednesday, October 5, 2011

I'm hopeless...

My mom's family is known for a couple things:
They are ALL artistic. They are all into plants (excessive gardening, which I refuse to ever start). They are all strangely humored. And they all PICK UP FURNITURE PEOPLE PUT TO THE SIDE OF THE ROAD AND BRING IT HOME (and usually there after paint it, if it is at all paintable.)

And I, though I am my mother's daughter, my grandparent's grand daughter, and my uncle's niece, have mocked them all for the furniture scavanging.

No, it isn't like they take garbage off the side of the road, or nasty, smelly, dirty, gross furniture. Just sometimes people put out stuff with "FREE" signs and if it is nice, vintage, or able to be painted, they typically grab it. (the catch is that usually they don't need the stuff. They just like it. It is usually cool, but they just need to find a place to put it.)

But now, I am eating my words (as my boyfriend would say "How does that Crow taste?").

You see, Sunday at 4:16 pm I sent my mother this text:

"it's official. I'm a Kiss. I just got an orange chair off the side of the road. Ur people have ruined me and I am hopeless. :p "

"Laughing. The gardening is coming next."

Yes. I did. I did it. The deed I said I would never do. And this is the post I claimed I would never subsequently make. *BUT I WILL STILL NEVER GARDEN!*

I saw a family putting out a bunch of furniture (they said they were remodeling their basement). Sitting on the curb was a deliciously orange, fuzzy, squishy vintage chair. I did not need a chair. I already have a chair and a couch in my room, along with my obvious bed. I am not lacking in seating. But it was ORANGE. And ever so fuzzy and squishy. And Vintage (and in good condition)! I think it was also calling out my name, but I am not sure...
How do you say "no" to that!?

So I threw it into my Durango and off I went, feeling completely beaten in my fight against my genes. But as soon as I got it home and realized it rocked and swiveled, and that  it was the right fit for curling up in (i cannot and will not sit with my feet dangling. ever.), I didn't care anymore. I knew it was the perfect chair for me. It is so incredibly cozy, and don't worry. I washed that cushion and then MADE room for that lovely chair in my bedroom.

 The chair is cozy. "Crow" is sort of tasty. And I am happy.

The end.

Friday, September 30, 2011


Maybe you think they are ugly. Maybe you think they are outdated. But I think nothing quite says "I'm an artsy college student and I shop at thrift stores" like a giant, vintage sweater.

I love big sweaters. They look adorable paired with messy hair, skinny jeans and converse. They are every so cozy (I do not like tight clothes. I avoid them as much as possible). They feel like warm, comfortable fall. And there are multitudes of them @ your local thrift store, in all sorts of colors and patterns. Everything from wild Christmas sweaters (which aren't adorable) to artistic looking ones with bold patterns. Some are horrendously ugly, but others are quite charming.I find ones I like quite often. But I have one problem. I am allergic to wool. Maybe not 100% allergic, but very sensitive. Anything with more than 10% wool makes me break out in red swollen hives and that ruins the adorable outfit big time. Sigh. Woe is me.

Here's some cutesy ones that make me want to snuggle up with an afghan, a notebook/reading book and a cup of tea.
I have one just like this, minus the red and yellow. 
Vintage, bought at Savers, but originally from Gap like 30 years ago.

I like this one a lot. Black and red are my favorites!

 A large sweater and a walk in some beautiful woods? Mmm, yes!

See? How wonderful!
Lot of people wear them with leggings, but I think Skinny Jeans are much better. Tights are a no. I've seen them with flowy skirts too, if you want go for the all around loose and comfy look. 

I need to specify one rule, though. DON'T WEAR IT AS A DRESS, no matter how big it is. That is no longer artsy, it is just trashy. Pants, please and thank you. Strong suggestion: feel free to wear shorts that cover your posterior as well. Much obliged.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Monday, September 26, 2011

{Reading} Nooks & Crannies...

Last week I bought a horribly cute vintage chair. At Savers. For $5. Yes.

It was green vinyl. I obviously needed it. When you already have a green vinyl (cucumber)couch in your room it is hard to say no to any other pieces of green vinyl vintage furniture. Especially when they are only five bucks.

The problem was my couch was right at the top of my staircase against the wall, between a keyboard and a dresser. Meaning no room for my new chair. Which in turn meant I had to rearrange my whole room to accomodate my find, and I ended up liking this new layout better.

Welcome, one and all, to my new READING NOOK!
Much cozier than before! It makes me really happy to snuggle up, buried in pillows and blankets, and read a nice book. Now if only I had time to do that...

Friday, September 23, 2011

Awesomebella (who is an awesome girlfriend) "cooks" -PUPPY CHOW

This week I "cooked" (using that word lightly as this only involved measuring, melting and mixing) my Air Force boyfriend some Puppy Chow.

Okay. I know it sounds gross. But it's not. Trust me. Dog food isn't involved.

He has one month left of tech school before he can come home for a couple weeks (!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!) and I figured some tasty snacks would help him in his final stretch of studies, labs and tests. Tasty snacks don't fix problems or make people stop missing each other, but they are helpful in one way or another in just about every situation. Or so I think.

Lets be honest people, if I created my own religious philosophy it would revolve around snacks (or dishwashers...but that is another story for another day). I love snacks. So much. (But creating your own religious beliefs is way bad so...I don't. Eternity is a long time) I walk into my kitchen at least twice a day, throw open the pantry and forage. Usually say "I NEED SOME SNACKS!" Sometimes this is followed by a made up snack song. Nothing unusual there.

Anyway, this is puppy chow:

I promise, underneath there isn't any dog food type product. It is all humanly edible and all delicious. And super duper easy to make. The entire production takes maybe 10 minutes.

All you need is some Chex* cereal (or something of the like), Chocolate Chips, PEANUT BUTTER, butter, vanilla extract, powdered sugar, 2 bowls and a microwave. 

I followed THIS RECIPE here, only I added extra peanut butter.

I've heard it said that "the way to a man's heart is through his stomach."
I am not sure that this is true, but I do know that JoJo sure likes spreadable peanut product.
The more peanut butter that can be in cooperated into food, the better.

*megaplus to this whole thing: puppy chow is very easy to stick in a plastic zip bag and send to anywhere. Always a plus when your favorite person in need of snacks is 1,400+ miles away. Easiest thing I have made and sent so far. So why not send some delicious coated munchables to your favorite long distance relation/military member/whomever?

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Christians only...sinners need not apply...

Today it was "club day" on my college campus. All of the clubs (outdoors club, art club, anime club, PRIDE club, etc) had set up little tables in the main foyer and were trying to get new members.

Smack dab in the doorway, separated from the masses, was one table that caught my eye.


On the table were some archaic looking pictures of Jesus with one of those orbs of utter holiness coming from his head.  A little box with a slit in the top was labeled "prayer requests." The only person at or around the table was the woman behind it. I couldn't help myself. I had to talk to her and try and figure this out.

"So...are only Catholics welcomed in your club?"

"The majority of the attendees and members are Catholics."

"Why do you have a club?"

"It is nice to have a group of people who share the same beliefs as you on campus. It is a good way for us (Catholics) to get to know each other. It is always nice to gather together, pray and spend time with other believers. If you would really like to check us out you could though."

"Oh, I'm a Bible-believing Christian. I was just curious, that's all." and I walked away.

The woman seemed nice enough. But something bothered me. I was bothered by the location of her table. She was so separate from the rest. The gays, lesbians, Hispanics, African American, culinary arts people, outdoorsy people, artists, military, writers, science majors and everyone else were grouped together, tables forming lines or semi circles. But the Catholics had their own table, off by themselves. I felt like they needed a sign that read "SINNERS NEED NOT ATTEND."

Now, I am not saying bad things about Catholics here. Really. I am also not against gathering with believers and praying. Not all at. It's Biblical. It is good and wonderful to build up each other and share in one another's lives. In fact, I am about to go attend a small group meeting with girls within my church. This is more me feeling let down by the "religiosity" we pin onto Christianity, though it shouldn't be that way.

People stereotype Christians. The horrible thing is that people are usually right. So many Christians come across as religious, "Holier Than Thou," and too good and clean for sinners. Instead of loving people, they judge them. Church gets portrayed as a place for the holiest of holy people who can manage to follow all the heavenly regulations without fail and filthy, rotten sinners need not attend.

Hold up. Maybe your church is fully of saintly perfect people, but I know mine is full of sinners. Lots of them. About 900. *GASSSP* As my pastor would say "there is no such thing as a perfect church and if there was, you'd it up when you start coming."

Church is practically a sinner club. Sounds awful? Not really. We are all sinners. Yes, I am saved and made clean by the blood of Jesus, but I do not live a spotless perfect life. Only Jesus did that. Church isn't supposed to be a place to protect Bible-believers from the big bad world. In fact, the Bible says BE IN THE WORLD, but not of it. Not hide from the world in your clubs and churches until Christ comes back to rescue you.

Jesus loved sinners. He hung out with them and liked it! He didn't do it to condemn them to eternal damnation in hell, but to show them the love of His Kingdom. He hung out with them far more than he did with the "holy" religious leaders of the time. Jesus hung out with the unlovely. The rejects of society. The people no one liked. And he loved them.

Jesus didn't attend community college, obviously, but if he had I don't think he would have joined a group promoting religious beliefs alike only to His. He wouldn't have joined the Jewish/Pharisee/Holy People Only club. But he probably would have gladly joined all the others.

In his book the The Irresistible Revolution, author Shane Claiborne (He is amazing, btw) says this:
What would twenty-year-old Jesus have said if they asked him "What are you going to do when you grow up?" I don't know, maybe something like "I am going to turn the world upside-down. I am going to hang out with prostitutes and tax collectors until people kill me."

I think this view of Jesus loving the unlovely is wonderfully portrayed in the Relient K (a band I once loved, but no longer would recommend) "Failure to Excommunicate." The chorus contains these lines...
"Jesus loved the outcasts. He loved the ones the world just loves to hate. And as long as there's a heaven, there will be a failure to excommunicate."
 I want to love the one the world just loves to hate too. Because Jesus is the one I want to model my life after.

Maybe this is all an unnecessary rant. Maybe there is nothing at all wrong with Christian clubs. But I would feel a whole lot better if Christians as a whole stopped segregating themselves from the world and just got out there and did some loving. Real, Jesus-style.

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

It's that time of year- CUSTOM KNITS AND CROCHETS!

Hey everyone. I generally try and avoid posts like this on my blog, but now that I am no longer trying to run an etsy and am only doing custom orders (and am a broke college student who drives a gas guzzling SUV)  I wanted to do a post about cozy knitted and crocheted items I would happily custom make for anyone who is interested!

Crocheted Animal Ear Flap Hats! 
I can do whatever sort of eared animal you desire, with or without felt/button faces. Or simply a ear flap hat, sans animal characteristics if you would prefer. Adult or child sized.
Below are a panda, fox and a sock monkey.

Knit or crocheted BEANIES and BERETS! 
Any size! Any color combo!

 These are great alone, or layered over fingered gloves. I have only made adult sizes, but I would be able to alter the pattern to a child's size. You pick your colors! (Perhaps to match your favorite coat. Or a fabulous above pictured custom hat!?)

And these aren't wearable really, but are equally as cozy...
Pretty much any animal, in colors of your choice.
I've done bears, dogs, cats, bunnies, elephants, turtles, pigs, birds, pandas...
Usually around 8-12 inches in height.

Fun stuff, eh? Great for fall. Wonderful for winter. Also, all of these things make great gifts!

Comment, or send me an email at call(DOT)me(DOT)ardent(AT)gmail(DOT)com if you are interested in discussing a custom order or pricings! Thanks everyone!


Related Posts with Thumbnails