Saturday, December 13, 2008

Going Home!

This is my last weekend in D.C. and I am going home on Monday! I am so excited to go home and see everyone. I'm also excited for:
-Dad's breakfasts (french toast, waffles and chocolate chip pancakes mmm)
-Buddy and his oh-so-soft fur

-quality time with the DVR and big screen
-watching the 4th season of LOST on said tv
-sleeping in a comfy, big bed
-grocery shopping in a real store
-Christmas movies with the girls (Little Women, Meet Me in St. Louis, Holiday Inn, Family Stone, Santa Clause, Elf, Miracle on 34th St, am I forgetting any?)
-singing around the piano
-baking (trying out a new sugar cookie recipe this year)
-making Christmas morning breakfast (any ideas?)
-watching family videos newly archived on dvd (thanks Leah!)
-going places in a car/driving a car (i miss being able to sing along to my music...can't really do that on the metro)
-finishing my very own quilting/sewing project with Mom
most of all, i'm excited to be with these guys!

(don't expand, it's a scanned copy and kinda fuzzy)

Saturday, December 6, 2008

Best Movie I Had Never Seen

I am so mad that no one has ever told me about this movie! And also that I had never seen Mr. Newman in a movie before. Maybe that's a good thing because I could hardly contain myself. Ms. Woodward, you are the luckiest woman. But it really was such a great movie. Go watch it.

I loved watching the featurette about the making of Cat on a Hot Tin Roof, including how well the cast worked together and what a springboard it was for the two leads. All I know is, I might be spending my Christmas vacation watching every movie Mr. Newman and Ms. Taylor have made.

Don't laugh at my picture choices, please. Let me have my moment. :)

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Is it time for Christmas yet?

I have a pretty firm rule about Christmas music. I wait until the day after Thanksgiving because when I start listening to Christmas music, I only listen to Christmas music. If I start too soon, I get sick of it. But I am really excited for this Christmas, especially since I will be home in time to decorate and enjoy December in Oregon. The point of this whole post? I might have to bend the rules this year because thanks to Nicole and Erin, I found a Christmas mix cd that looks incredibly good. Sara, Ingrid, Colbie, KT, and Lenka all on one cd? It must be a Christmas miracle!

Surprise in the Mail!

A blog that I faithfully read, Marta Writes, also has a store that sells fun crafty things like quote journals and cards. I missed out on the mini journals the first time around, so when Marta posted about a limited-time offer of these adorable journals, I snatched one up. It came a few weeks ago, beautifully packaged in polkadot tissue paper. The design of the journal was a surprise but I love it! As someone who loves the idea of keeping a journal but literally falls into bed every night, it is perfect. I have just enough energy to fill in the blanks and feel like I documented something about my day.

Yes, I did take a picture of it on my bed and no, the quality is not very good. So what?

Here is what the inside looks like, taken from Marta's blog. Click on it to see it bigger and enjoy her amazing handwriting. I would like to make it into font and use it for myself.

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Took the words right out of my mouth

While doing my daily check on E!, I saw a picture of Zac Efron with the following caption: "If we could take a snapshot of our dreams, this is kinda what it would look like." It's weird, like they read my mind or something. Ha.

"We are, and always will be, the United States of America."

We watched the speech in my class today and even amidst shushing kids and playing referee, I was really overcome. I thought back to that day, over a year ago, when I flipped to CNN and saw Barack Obama speaking and thought "this is what hope looks like." I am so excited to see our country change and be healed.

"If there is anyone out there who still doubts that America is a place where all things are possible, who still wonders if the dream of our founders is alive in our time, who still questions the power of our democracy, tonight is your answer."

"This is our time to reclaim the American dream and reaffirm that fundamental truth, that, out of many, we are one; that while we breathe, we hope. And where we are met with cynicism and doubts and those who tell us that we can't, we will respond with that timeless creed that sums up the spirit of a people: Yes, we can."

I found this website,, that has hundreds of cool campaign-y posters. These are my favorite.

Saturday, November 1, 2008

High School Musical 3

This weekend I went to see HSM3 by myself. Not a lot of people my age are as excited as I am to see people break out in song, you know? I would have brought along a couple of my 4th graders, but they all saw it opening weekend. Nevertheless, I woke up so excited this morning and listened to the soundtrack all the way there on the train. I was glad to see that there were other adults there, although the only ones in my row were two grown men. Hmm. The previews (my favorite part) were all good, especially the one with Matthew Perry and Zac Efron.

Now, on to the good stuff. I loved all of the interactions between Troy and Gabriella.
They are so ridiculously cute!

I also loved Gabriella's clothes, especially her dresses. I wish that they listed where the clothes were from in the credits.

My absolute favorite song is "Can I Have This Dance" where T & G waltz. There were some Sound of the Music-esque parts that I loved and the song is great, but mostly I just love the dancing.

Overall, I loved the movie and was sad that it meant the end of an era. I even teared up a little. If you haven't seen it yet, take your favorite youngster and go dance in your seat!

Monday, October 20, 2008

New Obsession

I feel like I need to preface this post. I am pretty much opposed to reality tv on principle, because it puts real writers and actors out of work and is just plain silly. There are a few exceptions, however, such as America's Next Top Model or documentaries, like Jon & Kate + 8. As a result, I don't get into the American Idol mania and I just wait for the cds to come out. Yesterday, Meg showed me a video of David Archuleta singing (in a sacrament meeting, no less!) and I fell in a little bit of love. Yes, Yes, I know I am a 22 year old and he is still in high school, but he's just so precious! This is his first music video, I am now passing the love onto you.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

Steals and Deals

It's been positively glacial in our apartment this weekend. Our heating and cooling is controlled centrally, so they won't make the switch between AC and heat until sometime next week. I'm never cold, so it's a big deal that I'm sleeping in a sweatshirt and socks. I've been dreaming of sweaters and scarves and coats and just discovered's cheap coats and jackets. These are my favorites:

$42.80 Georgette Swing Coat

$39.80 Wool coat

$34.80 Crinkly Trench

S24.80 Denim Swing Jacket

Go check these out!

Thursday, October 16, 2008


I'm supposed to be working on my huge unit-planning project for student teaching, but I'd rather not. So instead, i'll post about my favorite things right now.

TV: Let's face it, I watch far too much tv. Thanks to the internet, I can stay caught up on all my shows whenever I want. I feel like this season there are a lot of good shows back on the air from the strike last year, but also quite a bit of good new shows. Outstanding favorites would have to be Chuck, NBC's comedy that is basically Jim Halpert (The Office) as a spy. It's only just starting the second season, so you don't have much to catch up on.

I also guiltily admit that I am loving Gossip girl and America's Next Top Model this season. They both are so pretty to watch and have addicting drama. I especially love the fashion in Gossip Girl and last week's episode was a great example. I love how they dress Blair as if she's living in a different era.

Top Model has been good because they've had some super creative shoots like this one where they were in a pool, only shot from the nose up.

I've got my money on Elina to win because she's stunning and she's got mad posing skills.

Although she's a close second.


Before I came to D.C., I flew to Chicago to stay with my cousins, Ben and Sarah, and their ridiculously cute little boy, Eli. I was there for about a week and was so excited to fulfill my My Boys/Ferris Bueller fantasies. I had some ideas for places I wanted to see, mostly from this show. Sadly, most of them were either not real places, or bars where a pregnant woman and I would feel very out of place. Sarah was a great tour guide though and took me to fun places around Evanston and Chicago. I took a ton of pictures, so here's just a highlight.

On a travel/food show I love, Giada's Weekend Getaways, they featured Chicago's Architectural Boat tour which looked so fun, so that was a must. I love love love architecture, which I owe to my BYU humanities class, and since Chicago is known for their architects and beautiful buildings, this was one of my favorite things.

I don't remember the names of all of the buildings because there were so many, but I was able to look most of them up on Google images and find out.

I just wrote a caption about how this is the Hancock building, only to realize later that this is definitely the Sears Tower. So embarrassing. Moving on...

This is 333 West Wacker Drive. This picture is harder to tell, but the front side of the building is totally curved. The back side is normal-shaped, but I like the idea of a building that bucks tradition and looks so pretty.

Ok, Mom, this one's for you. It's where PJ works! And everyone else, this is the Chicago Sun-Times newspaper building.

This is an apartment building that I just loved. I think it looks a cross between a honeycomb and a flower. I would have loved to see the floor plan and how the apartments are set up.

I just liked this because I love anything covered in ivy. Some people think it's gross and that it's harmful to buildings, but I just can't resist.

This is Lake Point Tower, a high-rise residential building. It's like a curvy triangle and I imagine from the sky, it looks like a clover or something like that. I remember learning that every apartment has a view of Lake Michigan. Also, Sammy Sosa and Scottie Pippen have lived here. (That's for you, Dad.)

The tour guide talked about the Great Chicago Fire of 1871 that spurred a rebirth for Chicago and how architects from all over the world wanted to come help rebuild the city. I learned a lot about Chicago history and tons about the architecture. I highly recommend it for any visitors to the Windy City. Just don't forget a camera, there's a lot to see.

Monday, October 6, 2008

New movie

Last night I watched a delightful movie with my wonderful roommate/friend Meg. Miss Pettigrew Lives for a Day was so charming and only solidified my dream to live in another era, preferably one where they have killer wardrobes. Here's my favorite line from the film, spoken by Miss Pettigrew herself, about a lost love: "You would call him dull, no doubt, but he smiled whenever he saw me and we could've built a life on that." Love it.

Saturday, October 4, 2008

The Big Apple

Last weekend, I got on a charter bus and watched a few movies (Mad Money & Vantage point) while driving to New York City. When I collected my baggage and watched the bus drive away, I quickly came to the realization that I was standing on a street corner in NYC at 10:15 at night, all by myself. I permitted myself to have a quick panic attack, then stepped into the nearest building and called my high school friend, Connie. Soon, we were on our way back to her apartment and my New York weekend had begun.

We woke up at the unholy hour of 7 to throw on some clothes and book it to the Palace theatre and wait for student rush tickets to Legally Blonde: The Musical

Now, I know you're all thinking, "Legally Blonde is a musical? That sounds dumb." A valid thought, but if you liked the movie in the slightest, the musical is that much better. If you have any sort of intolerance for the color pink, however, stay far away. Very far away.
I happened to catch the MTV reality show to find a replacement for the original Elle Woods and fell in love with the music and immediately put it on my to-see list. The winner, and current Elle Woods, Bailey Hanks (not the one pictured above) is only 20, but she was perfect in the role and could really belt it.

We sat in front of the theatre for 2+ hours, and it paid off when we got front-row seats for $26.50.

Please don't be alarmed by my appearance in this picture. It is very early in the morning.

We came back to the theatre at 7:30 and settled into our front-row seats. I peeked over the edge into the orchestra pit and felt a little reminiscent of my high school days. The theatre was so beautiful, but it felt small and intimate. When the lights went down and the curtain went up, I got a huge smile on my face that was stuck for hours. Everything was so fun and happy and I couldn't believe how close everyone was! I could see their nude pantyhose underneath costumes, lines from their wigs on their foreheads, and how extremely spitty everyone was. I highly recommend the show, and accompanying soundtrack (which is from the original cast, not the current one).

The amazingly talented Bailey Hanks aka Elle Woods.

I went to the show with friends from high school Connie, and Anne, and Connie's boyfriend Barry. We dressed up and went to a fancy Italian restaurant before the show.

After the show, we went to BlueFin, a fancy schmancy restaurant to have some dessert. I got chocolate truffle cookies -so good!- and enjoyed peoplewatching. We left to go home at 12:45 and I couldn't believe how many people were just starting their nights! It really seemed like 8 by how many people were out and how bright it was from all the lights. I snapped this picture just before we left the theatre district.

Earlier in the day, Connie and I ventured into Chinatown, in search of a few good purses from Canal St. I kept seeing giraffe print purses, and they were so cute I had to get one. I don't really care about labels, especially because I didn't want to pay a lot of money, but we did get to go back to the special room where they have all of the brandname knockoffs.

I ended up getting a giraffe print wallet and purse, and a huge yellow bag, all for about $60! I was so excited!

This yellow bag is big enough to fit a small person inside. Seriously, I tried.

We stopped for some food at Joe's Shanghai, a somewhat authentic Chinese restaurant. Everyone sits at these big, round tables so you get to pretend like you can't hear your neighbor yelling at their kid to stop putting dumplings in their water cup. So fun. We got hot and sour soup (my favorite!), soup dumplings, and green beans. Everything was so delicious, and it was a noisy, bustling, but fun restaurant.

We shopped some more, and headed towards Madison Square Park, not to be confused with Madison Square Garden, where the Knicks play, and waited in line for a shake from the famous Shake Shack. It's a Burgerville-esque burger and fries stand where the food is all fresh and organic, and people wait in line for hours, it's that good. Recommended by Natalie, expert on all things New York.

Tuesday, September 30, 2008


A few weekends ago, our coordinator took us on a road trip to Philadelphia. In my ignorance, or memory loss from high school history, thought it would be a boring trip. Boy, was I wrong. Apparently, lots of stuff went down, namely signing of important documents and it being the hometown of a one B. Franklin. Here's what we saw:

We walked through a museum all about the Liberty Bell and its history. I had no idea it went on a tour throughout the country before being retired. Right after I took this picture, an Asian tourist went up to the bell and touched it for his friends to take a picture. Everyone was yelling at him and he so didn't get the message. Dude, don't you see the crack? Very fragile!

This is Independence Hall, where the Declaration and the Constitution were signed. Also, where Benjamin Gates removed a brick and found a pair of B. Franklin's bifocals and then solved an American mystery and found treasure. Oh wait, you say, that was in a movie? Darn, I blurred the lines between reality and fiction again.

The actual room where the meetings were held in a hot, hot summer with no A/C that decided the fate of our country. Pretty impressive, considering I get antsy walking for a few minutes outside in the 90% humidity.

We went through this museum dedicated to the Constitution that was so amazing. The depth of the information there was overwhelming and there were really cool interactive displays, like videorecording yourself being sworn in as the president. There was a presentation in a theatre with speakers, videos and music that had me in tears by the end. I'm such a sucker for people triumphing over insurpassible odds. Oh, and this is a replica of the signing of the Declaration with bronze statues of everyone there. Once again, B. Franklin

Everyone wanted to go to the art museum and run up the steps and I so didn't get it until I saw this statue dedicated to a character in a movie? Someone had to explain to me how Rocky was a big deal movie for some people, something about an underdog and whatnot. Sorry, but I was either not born or doing more important things like taking my first steps when that flick came out. For all you sports buffs, this is my one and only picture devoted to Sly.

Oh, and I met Obama. Highlight of my year. Let's all pretend that he is a three dimensional real person and that we had a wonderful, eye-opening discussion. Also please applaud me on my wardrobe coordination. Truly stellar.

We also watched a short film about B. Franklin, but it was so appallingly cheesy that I refuse to write more than a sentence about it. We did get to see the original foundation of his house and listen to Walt Whitman, George Washington and various other important figures tell us about the man that was. Overall, very educational and fun, if only for a day.