Monday, December 31, 2012

The Basement is Finally Done!

FINALLY THE BASEMENT IS FINISHED (ish)!!! With a few hours to spare, Mark and I completed the basement, cleaned the house, and set up for NYE.
Although it was a long process and not a lot of fun. I think the results more than speak for themselves.
I am looking forward to an awesome NYE!

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Christmas Urn

Mark and I gave his grandma her Christmas present early this year, as she is headed out of state in a few days. This means I can talk about the urn I painted/glazed for her!
Erin and I went to a potter shop in September and worked diligently on creating a few masterpieces. While we did not throw/create the actual pottery or have anything to do with firing it, we did spend several hours carefully designing and painting our pieces.
Luckily for me, Erin is an amazing artist and was more than willing to help me with shading. You want an A+ 2-D piece of art? Well I can help you with that. You want something with shading, realism, or depth? Sorry, not my forte. Maybe you should talk to Erin. I did.
Overall, I am pretty happy with how our pieces turned out and the process of making them. I had a lot of fun working on them and the company was the best. I would definitely do this again.
Plus, it made an awesome gift!

Monday, December 17, 2012

How to Make Awesome Felt Masks

I forgot to post anything about this. Way back in September, I created some felt masks for Mark and me to wear at the Big Zoo Party. I am very interested in making animal masks for all of the people in our bridal party as well. I think that would make some fun zoo photos.
DIY Felt Masks
I started by deciding what animal masks I wanted to create and then looked up pictures and masks of said animals. This time I went with Red Fox and Red Panda. The next step was figuring out what supplies I needed. For these masks, I found a very nice mask form and used glue to layer the felt over it.
DIY Felt Masks
DIY Felt Masks
I decided on the design I wanted to reproduce and printed it up to be the size I needed for our masks. Then I cut out the felt to match the shapes I needed. It was pretty simple.
DIY Felt Masks
I then placed the design on the mask and moved felt pieces around until it looked the way I wanted it to. The hardest part was gluing it all onto the mask without making a huge mess or ruining the felt.
DIY Felt Masks
I added some finishing touches, glued on the ribbon, and put in the black wire gauge for whiskers. Then I was done!
DIY Felt Masks

Saturday, December 15, 2012

Say Cheese

Pictures are a huge thing in my life. I take a bazillion pictures every year. Enough pictures that I wear through a nice point and shoot every year. This is a relatively new obsession of mine. Relative, as in the last ten years. So why do I love it so much?
Honestly, because now I have relationships and memories worth keeping. Memories I want to make sure I never forget. Pictures really help me with that. It is my way of making sure what and whom I love can never be lost.
The only downside to being the one who is taking the pictures (and I will admit sometimes I am too focused on this), is that you rarely get to be in them. I would like to be in more pictures, more a part of my own memories and moments. Maybe it is time to put the camera away and live in the moment. ALTERNATIVELY, maybe people could just take more pictures of me, so that I feel like they really want me to be a part of their memories. 
(That was not pathetic at all. I promise.)

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

Say Hel-lo

This week Mark and I made a big decision in our life. We decided to adopt another dog. Our dog, Baldr, receives and requires a lot of attention, time, and love. However, he still sometimes seems lonely and morose. Since we could not devote anymore of our resources to him, we decided that he would be happier if he had another dog companion.
After discussing whether this was a good fit for our home, I decided that we could fit another dog into our life. Mark was less enthusiastic. He just is not a dog person. However, he was the one who suggested we pet puppies during my lunch break. It seemed obvious where that would lead…
I first fell in love with a beautiful 4 year old black Shepherd mix named Levi. HE seemed like the perfect fit and was very sweet. When we brought Baldr to meet him, the most unfortunately funny exchanged occurred. They spent 45 minutes trying to molest each other and neither was being very receptive to stopping. As much as we loved the idea of getting Levi, it did not seem like he would integrate into our home very easily. After promises that they found all of their dogs homes, we talked of leaving.
Before we left it was suggested we meet Sassy, a small 3 year old black Lab mix. I swore I would not fall in love and we would leave right after. I was wrong. Sassy and Baldr hit it off pretty quickly. She was painfully shy around humans, but she really lit up around Baldr. After discussing her past (stray with a heart murmur), we decided to risk it and take her home with us.
Hel (what Mark named Sassy) has only been home with us for a few days and she is already becoming more confident, happy, and secure. She is still skittish and it will take time for her to overcome this, but she is already approaching us more frequently and confidently.
We are hoping that Hel will become more playful and interactive with Baldr as she becomes more secure. Baldr and Hel roam the house together and seem to enjoy each other’s company. Baldr occasionally gets to wild for Hel, but she is adapting.
Here’s hoping Mark forgives me.

Saturday, December 8, 2012

Farewell

On November 24, my grandma passed away. She was a wonderful person who I never knew as well as I should have. A regret that I had when both of my grandpas passed as well. My grandpas died when I was younger and too obsessed with the drama in my own life to realize what little time I had to know them as people.
My grandma’s last few years were not kind to her. Both her mind and her body betrayed her in the worst fashion. In a way that terrifies me to think about. She was lucky to have children that genuinely wanted the best for her and continued to visit her. Even when she lost the ability to truly appreciate this. I can remember both her and my grandpa (her husband) saying they were ready to pass on. Unfortunately, for my grandma it took much longer than was fair or kind.
I had the chance to know my grandma better, but I let Alzheimer’s, distance, and other factors get in my way. She had always been someone I saw only a few times a year and when I was old enough to understand that there was a time limit on our relationship, I felt like it was too late to create a close relationship and by then she was already starting to be affected by the Alzheimer's.
However, at the end of the day these really are excuses that I told myself to excuse my behaviors. I had several opportunities to be a greater part of her life and vice versa. I just did not take them. Of course, I had reasons for why I did not make this a priority in my life and they felt like sound reasons at the time. Now that the time has elapsed, I am not so sure they were anything more than selfish. At the end of the day, I am still more obsessed with the drama in my own life, than with getting to know someone who loved me.

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

More About That Darn Basement

I totally forgot something very important: I hate painting and manual labor. So…that means the rest of the month is really going to suck for me. Fortunately, I love results. Therefore, that is what I am focusing on. Plus, let’s be real, Mark is doing the hard stuff.
We have made some progress in the basement. I am starting to feel hopeful that we will be done before NYE. However, I am trying not to get my hopes up too high. There is still a lot to do.
The upside is that means Mark and I will be working on a project together and working as a team. Which I love. Except, when we get tired and start to get on each other’s nerves. That part is less then great. 

Saturday, December 1, 2012

Red Nose Ruckus

Mark was invited to the Red Nose Ruckus this year. The event sponsors Child & Family Charities, whose mission is to strengthen and support children, families, and individuals as they evolve and grow in a changing community. Mark's friend helped organize it and we went to support her and the cause.
Red Nose Ruckus
Mark and I had a great time and it was even better because our friends were there as well. We all took advantage of the entertainment, which included caricature artists, casino games, photo booths, tarot readers, auctions, and a raffle. 
Red Nose Ruckus
Red Nose Ruckus
Red Nose Ruckus
Red Nose Ruckus
We had a pretty great time. However, the most amazing part was when our friend, Nate, won the 2K diamond raffle! Pretty damn amazing!

Running Sucks

Running for pleasure may be the most moronic thing I have ever heard. That is right up there with saying you like paying taxes. I just don't believe you. You do not like running. You are lying to yourself and me. 
That being said, I reluctantly jog/run/walk. Very reluctantly and only because it is such an effective exercise. If I was naturally thin, you would never see me run for any reason other than out of terror (aka the only reason to run). 
Several of my friends are 'runners' (those damn people who insist they enjoy running and do it for reasons other than exercise). They insist that they get something called a 'runners high' (aka the huge lie runners use to try to convince others to join their evil cult). I have yet to ever experience this high. Now, I am willing to concede that this could be due to my hatred of running and my inability to run for further than a mile at a time. I hear that you need to surpass 4 miles to achieve this high. Sense I can think of no reason I would ever need to run further than 4 miles, I will most likely never discover this mythical 'runners high' (that and it doesn't exist). 
Now all of this being said, I will continue to attempt running (more like run a mile, walk a lap, run a lap, walk a lap, run a lap..and so on), entirely because it is a fabulous way to lose or maintain your weight. Particularly, if you enjoy eating (if only I could get rid of that nasty habit). But I maintain that I hate it and it sucks.