Saturday, October 30, 2010


I love Fall! 

It's definitely Fall around here.  The trees are looking pretty bare (most of their leaves are in our yard, in fact), the smell of wood fires and decaying foliage is strong in the crisp air, and the windows are shut tight.  BEST. TIME. OF. THE. YEAR. 

This morning I got up around 10 and went for a long walk.  On my loop back to the house, I saw a vine with some berries attached to it dangling from a low tree limb.  I thought, "my, that would look just precious strung around the bowl on my dining room table!"  So I pulled, and pulled, and eventually got most of the vine, which I then had to carry with my all the way back home.  It was worth it, because it looks so rustic and awesome.

On my way to a nice, warm shower, I picked up the Comet cleanser and some rags.  I scrubbed that shower nice and clean (it badly needed that) and now I almost want to take a bath in there.  But not quite--I could not get the bottom clean, no matter how hard I scrubbed.  My next step is to caulk every nook and cranny, because I'm tired of dark, icky things creeping out of the seams in the plastic.

After my shower, I did some minor cleaning around the house (vacuuming, dusting, lighting candles.....that counts!), and then I put up some white sheer IKEA curtains I'd bought a month ago.  I wanted to just brighten up the room, and add a little something softer to the windows.  I think it came out nicely!  Now I am going to have some lunch, and take a nap.  I have Monday off, so I'm trying to get everything done around the house before then so I can actually enjoy the time off. :)


See that awesome red splotch in the lower right corner with hydrangea coming out of it?  That's an authentic, vintage Dansk pitcher that I got for an extremely low price on eBay, and I LOVE IT.  Here's what they look like (and ignore the prices on that page--I didn't pay anything near that for mine!).

Fog on my way to work the other day.  Spooooooky!

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Flyers v. Toronto Maple Leafs = WIN!


Goal scorers: Blair Betts, Mike Richards (the cap'n!), Scott Hartnell, Ville Leino, and DANNY BRIERE!  WOOO!!!  Took lots of pictures tonight, although due to the traffic trying to get into the Phillies game (#6 of their series against the San Francisco Giants), we arrived too late to see most of the practice--which is my favorite part because I can get close-ups.  Anyway, a fantastic game, and not one of our regularly-scheduled ones either.  We're going again next Saturday so we have to dress up, but I'm not sure as what yet.  I have several wigs, but nothing that looks like a costume.


Sunday, October 17, 2010

More geocaching & birthdays.

Yesterday was my birthday, and It. Was. Awesome.  Abby and Ben came to see the house for the first time (we moved in almost a year ago!), and loved it.  I had made some more pumpkin cookies before they came over, and they ate half of them before we left to go find another geocache.  It was another cache located in Hibernia County Park, which is where Jeff & I found our first one.  This was kind of outside the park, and we walked a mile to get there because we didn't know there was parking right next to it, but it was worth it.  After walking down a beautiful, leaf-covered trail surrounded by trees and Brandywine Creek on one side, we stopped to check our GPSs and read the clue: "if you don't see it, TRI again."  Well, obviously that wasn't a typo, and we were still trying to figure out how much farther we had to go when Ben said, "'tri' three tree trunks maybe?"  We all looked up and to our left, and right there was a tree with three trunks.  Can you believe that?  Without realizing it, we had stopped right where we needed to be!  We found the cache, left our names and a trinket (a temporary rose tattoo), and then, because it was getting dark, we turned around and headed back to our cars.

We then Chili's for dinner, which was very nice.  Against my strict instructions not to do it, Abby and Ben somehow gave our waiter "the sign" and I ended up being sung to.  EMBARASSING!  But I'm glad they did it.  Abby got me an awesome set of porcelain measuring cups that are red with a stitch pattern around the outside (I badly needed those!), an amazing "winter berry" candle, and a bad of Starbuck's Cinnamon Coffee.  I haven't tried it yet, but I know it's going to be delicious--especially with caramel apple creamer.

Today it's beautiful again--cool, windy, sunny.  I'm going back to the trail at Hibernia while there's more light out, so I can get a bunch of photos.  Here are a few from yesterday!

Jeff playing with the new candle.

 This young man, named Cody, had left what looks like his senior portrait in the cache.  Weird?

Sunday, October 10, 2010

Geochaching n00bs.

Today Jeff and I went geocaching for the first time.  We spent an hour and a half searching for the right trail at a local county park, and finally ended up in the right direction.  However, the GPS on my phone kind of stinks so it was skipping around a lot.  As we were heading back to the trail we'd left to search for this particular cache, I noticed that the GPS was saying we were closer than we'd been all day, so I stopped to look around again and low and behold...there it was!  An old, cracked Tupperware container beneath a rock.  Hot damn, I'd found it!  We dug through the contents for a while (small things people had left, like trinkets, candy, rocks, coins, etc.), signed the paper log that had somehow stayed dry, and then went to Sonic for lunch.  Not a bad way to spend a lovely Sunday afternoon!

Here are a few photos I took along the way:

Jeff leads the way.

Jeff with the log--we actually found it!

We saw this guy on our way back to the car--it's a groundhog!

Friday, October 8, 2010

How to NOT treat your co-workers.

A lesson in common human decency.

There is a really good soup and sandwich shop near where I work, and I decided to get lunch there today.  As I was looking at the daily menu online, a friend came over and noticed what I was looking at.  She then asked very nicely if I would mind getting something for her if I was going, and I said "sure!"  I was about to place our order when my boss - let's call her "Rachel" - suddenly appears behind me (she thinks she's a ninja, and never makes her presence known right away--she waits for me to realize she's there and then acknowledge her).  She says that she heard us talking about getting lunch from this restaurant, and then proceeds to tell me that she is going to put in an order with me to add to the two I already have.  For a split second, I wonder why on Earth she didn't consider asking me first, but then she tells me to scroll up so she can see the rest of the menu on my screen and I forget to even mutter an objection.  I get the order together for her without the barest of complaints.  I drive to the shopping center where the restaurant is located and spend 5 whole minutes trying to navigate the crowded parking lot to get a spot.  I go in to the restaurant, and wait 10 more minutes until someone acknowledges me and asks my name so they can get my food.  Then I mistakenly try to pay separately for everything, but the snooty kid behind the counter tells me in a "you'd be ruining my day" tone of voice that she would "have to delete everything and start completely over" if I did that, so I quickly give up and say I'll just put it all on my card.  After almost getting run over in the parking lot trying to walk back to my car, I arrive back at work and quickly sort out all of the food.  Rachel had given me a $5 bill and her food came to less than $4, so I head to her office to see what she wants me to do about change (as I never have cash on me).  She is in a casual conversation with two co-workers, but they all stop talking when I walk in and Rachel just looks at me as if just by standing there I'm making her day 100% worse.  I pause, say I'm sorry for interrupting, and explain the situation.  After giving me another exasperated look and rolling her eyes, Rachel says, "I don't know, just keep the $5!"  Now, I am an honest person, and I also like to get change back when I give someone too much money for something.  Apparently Rachel doesn't share that sentiment.  I put her food in her office and glance back out, where one of the co-workers is giving me a sympathetic look out of Rachel's view - it's that noticeable that Rachel is being a bitch about this whole thing.  I start to walk back to my desk, and as I pass Rachel she's shaking her head and rolling her eyes again - a clear sign that I've ruined her entire day by going to get food that she didn't even ask me first to get for her.  Clearly, it was really stupid of me to assume she'd want change back.  On my way out of Rachel's office, one of my co-workers calls after me that I could get change out of the snack food box we keep in the kitchen, which is a great idea--and she says it without making me feel like I've ruined her life, which for me is a bonus, since I'm not mean to other people for no reason.  I do what she suggested, take $4, and return the $1 change to Rachel, who barely mutters a "thanks."  

So kids, I guess the moral of the story is: don't do anything for people like Rachel, because they are horrible human beings.  The end.

Saturday, September 4, 2010

Quick post - bathroom is BLACK!

That's right, I did it!  I grew a pair and painted my first floor bathroom "Stealth Jet" black.  Yet again, thank you all of the design blogs of the world for the inspiration. :)


 Isn't it BEAUTIFUL!?

The dining room in its current form.  LOVE that rug (thanks, Mom!)

One of the women at work, Ellen, made this specifically for me--just because I liked the one she had up in her office!  So cool!

Sunday, August 29, 2010

The World's Newest Crocheting Monster

"No more vacation..."

Jeff and I have returned from the land of ultra-flat landscapes, corn, and good ol' Midwestern mentalities.  Illinois!  I bought an old '65 license plate to remember the trip.  Along with many, many other things.  Our first stop was to Mitsuwa Marketplace in Arlington Heights, which is a suburb of Chicago.  Mitsuwa is, by their own decree, "the largest Japanese marketplace in the U.S."  No surprise, with my lustiness of all things Nippon, I love that place.  We bought some mochi, plenty of candy (including Pocky, even though it's pretty trendy--it's still delicious), and some sushi for my mom.  I tried to pick out a book or two but their entire bookstore is in Japanese so I wouldn't have been able to read anything.  Shame on me for never learning that language!  We also visited Anderson Gardens, which despite the bland, American name, is actually a very cool Japanese garden in the middle of Rockford.  I've been there a few times, but somehow it was my mom's first trip--and she's lived in Rockford for a loooong time.

Plenty of pictures were taken and I will slowly be putting up my favorites and giving more details of the trip.  Most of the shots were taken at AG, but I have some random weird shots too.  

Oh, I might as well mention that I learned to crochet during the trip and have already made 3--yes, THREE!--dish cloths.  (Thanks, Sally!!)

Vanity plates in IL are very popular.  We spotted this one on the way to Mitsuwa.

 My first crocheted dish cloth!

 Sudoku...what Jeff did during most of his free time. :)

 A turkey (who tried to eat my camera strap but I stopped him, thank you very much) at Edwards Apple Orchards.

 My second crocheted dish cloth (hey, I know you're getting sick of them, but that's all I know how to make, so far!), titled "peaches & cream."


 The spectacular North Gate at Anderson Gardens.

 The AG tea house display, which visitors are sadly not allowed to enter.

 The waterfall at AG.

  The "guesthouse" at AG.

  Awesome, right?

 My mom, knitting yoga socks. :)

Friday, August 20, 2010

Let's kick the BEAT!


Jeff and I are going on vacation, starting tomorrow.  I saw a couple of cool things I wanted to get down on "paper" before we leave, so that I can start letting them inspire me when we get back.  Firstly, how awesome are paper cranes?  They're totally awesome.  This awesome, to be exact:

                                                  {emmasdesignblog find}
I can so make that.  And I will, as soon as I'm back from Rockford, IL. I've also (via emmasdesignblog) found a site called finelittleday, which is so fantastic--although it makes me quite jealous with all its great photos of mid-century and rustic furniture.  I don't know where people find that great mid-century, Danish teak furniture, but I want all of it.  I'm in particular need of a dresser, a coffee table for the living room, and maybe a new TV stand. 

I wish I had a cottage in the woods somewhere!  100sq ft, that's all I need.  Well, some day.  

Just bought this print from finelittleday.  I'm not sure where it will go, but it's so full of win that it couldn't have been turned down.  Not with a gun to my head could I have resisted. 

Sunday, August 8, 2010

IKEA scavaging!

"Hooray for the everyday."

I received the brand new, 2010 IKEA catalog in the mail this past Thursday.  This is always a momentous occasion for me, as I 1) LOVE IKEA, and 2) love reasons to go there and spend money. I bought a bunch of small things, from vases to shower liners to candle holders ($.99 each!), but my main reason for going was to buy supplies for a small DIY project.  I was inspired by this post from Anna @ D16 (call me creepy if you want, but I lurk at D16 because everything she has done to her home(s) has been so incredibly inspiring to me!).  She took an old, ugly stool and covered it with a beautiful wooden tray that she had found.  I figured, if someone else can do it, so can I!  And when I got that catalog and saw they were selling a black stool for $6 and trays for $14, well, I couldn't pass it up.  So, I sanded down and stained the trays with IKEA's "antiquing" glaze, and glued them to the stools.  Here they are, my new IKEA-hacked end tables!


And there you have it.  Not quite the same as Anna's, but then I'm not one to copycat entirely.  I'm like Japan--take a good idea and make it your own. :)

Here are a few more random shots from this weekend, which is sadly almost over already.  Oh, Mondays, you are wicked!

PS - These tree vases are so great!  And I've never seen them at my local IKEA.  I. Want. Them.  (Also, this entire room is amazing--do places like this really exist?)

Thursday, August 5, 2010


I often wonder if they know the word "manners"...

I talk to a lot of people in my job.  It's 90% customer service, and I know how to do it.  I'm extremely good at solving the problems that these people call me about and I do it with a lot of grace and politeness, and that's saying a lot - considering these people are East Coasters (more specifically "Main Liners") and therefore very rude, and very obviously entitled.  Here's a sample of the kind of person I have to deal with help in a day:

A woman calls me and announces herself as "Adri-aaahhh-nah," and says that she had left a message for me earlier in the week and I never got back to her, so she's calling me again.  I've never heard of her, so she is either making up that she called or she called and left a message for the wrong person--someone who is not me.  At any rate, she says she has bought tickets from us in the past and says that she's decided to do something different this year (ooh, ahh!) and buy tickets to our family series.  Adriaaahhhnah then goes on to ask if we get more money to do those particular shows, because "they're soooo much better than your other shows.  The sets look much better made, there are more people in them..."  I try to explain that actually our other shows have bigger budgets and therefore we spend more on them, but that all of our shows are made to the highest standards regardless of budget.  Adriaaahhhnah ignores my reply and begins talking over me to say that she just realized that she doesn't have any idea what dates she wants.  She will have to look at her calendar because she has season subscriptions to every single sports team on the East Coast.  (Literally--she listed about 10 teams out to me.  Didn't even know we had that many out here.)  So she asks for my direct number, and before I can get out that I have an extension but the receptionist will probably pick up the phone and just transfer Adriaaahhhnah through to me, she interrupts me again to say, "you know what?  Can you just call me in an hour and I'll give you the dates then?  I don't want to have to call and get the switchboard to patch me through."  Switchboard...?  Honestly, what era are you living in?  At this point, my only stunned thought is, "JUST WHO THE HELL DOES THIS LADY THINK SHE IS!?!?"  (Gurren Lagann, anyone?  Anyone??)  I'm totally over her at this point so I say sure, I'll call her in an hour.  I go to lunch, and when I get back there's a message from her (ohmigosh, she actually called the right person this time!) saying that she is just calling "to tell you that I still don't have the dates for all of the home games, so I'll call you some time next week."  Right.  So in other words, you called me upset that I hadn't called you back because you were in so much of a rush to get your tickets...and now you're going to call me when you feel like it.  Mmhm.  ...I sincerely hope she forgets to call me, because we don't need her money if she's going to behave like that.

And now that I've ranted, here are some fun things to look at!  These are a couple of shots I took of our Teen SummerStage program kids rehearsing & creating advertising for their piece.     Happy Thursday!   

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

It's hot, in To-pe-kaaaaa.

Of course my computer would choose to restart itself as soon as I start a new post.  Yay, technology!

I found something very interesting online today whilst looking for vintage ad photos for a design project at work.  This is something that would NEVER be used these days, but I love it:

Can you believe that?  Neither can I!  Even if it's fake (and I wouldn't be the slightest bit surprised if it was), it's still awesome.  

It's getting warmer again, maybe Indian Summer is coming.  I know it's only the beginning of August but it was so nice and mild this past weekend, and I was hoping it would stick around!  Too bad, it will just make it harder to drag myself outside to use my awesome new weed-wacker.  Tested it out today around the garden, and I LOVE USING IT.  I'm into power tools (ladies with tools - it's sexy). 

Well, that's about all for now.  I'm off to destroy some WoW bad guys. 

Saturday, July 31, 2010

Mr. Bean vs. Michael Jackson = Win

"Hands are NOT for hitting!"

Had a successful trip to Longwood today!  The weather was phenomenal, my camera didn't feel too heavy as I lugged it around, and best of all--the place wasn't packed.  I overheard quite a few interesting comments, either from mother to child (above), or from husbands to wives, or from people talking to themselves.  I like to people watch when I'm there (oh, and I might add that on my way out of the place, I saw a wedding party on their way in).  My new 10-20mm lens performed well, and I took a lot of HDR photos--or rather, took 5 shots of every subject so that I could later make an HDR out of them.  Some of them turned out pretty shiny!

(Had some major ghosting on this one, apologies.)

What else is happening?  Hrm, not much.  We are attacking our lawn tomorrow.  Gonna try to kill the crabgrass, clover, and otherwise good-sounding but evil-intending plants that are passing for grass.  I bought two bottles of Weed-B-Gone at Home Depot, and my very first week-wacker (so proud!), and I intend for our lawn to be the best on the cul-de-sac after tomorrow.  Huzzah!
Going to see "Inception" tonight with Jeffie.  Good times... good, head-tripping times.  Stay classy, everyone.

Friday, July 30, 2010

An uneventful, but gorgeous, day.

"I don't want no paper gangsta."

I heard that particular lyric quite a few times today, courtesy of my lovely office mate Liz.  She's hip with the music stuff, while I am really not.  ...Unless you count the fact that I know a lot of random Japanese from listening to my very large J-Pop/Anime OST collection (Cowboy Bebop "ELM" = love).  I certainly don't.

Some things from Etsy I love/wish I could afford/want some sugar daddy to buy me:


It has ceased to be 90% humidity and 100 degrees here in eastern PA, so today had me wishing I worked construction, just so I could be outside.  In the summer that's rare for me to say--I'm what you would call "hateful of the heat."  Today it didn't get over 85, and the humidity was a nice, low 41%.  Tomorrow will be more of the same, so my pasty white butt will be trekking to Longwood Gardens, in historic Kennett Square.  Longwood is the East Coast's largest arboretum, and is a wonderful place to check out not just plants, but architecture and people, too.  Every time I'm there, from Spring till Fall, weddings are taking place.  Check it out on Flickr, you might be impressed!  I'll be uploading some shots from there if all goes well.  For now, a summer shot I took out of my office window at sunset (fear my weedy lawn!!, and sorry for the screen distortion!) and my uber new alt on WoW, Quynlyn (Draenei shaman).  Have a good Friday night, everyone!

Tuesday, July 27, 2010


"The BOCA ticket printer is a BEAST."

This week at work we began printing out what is going to end up totaling 35,000 tickets.  So far we've printing 13,713 - we have three more days to print, check and rip apart the rest.  Wooowwee!  No small feat.  To show the severity of my plight for the remainder of the week, I submit exhibits A and B:
(Please note that my desk is NOT usually this messy.  The cute Hollywoods hanging on the wall are always there, however - as well as about 1/100th of my anime figure collection.  Yes, I nerd.)

Needless to say, it's a monster.

Moving on!  I received from B & H Photo today my new Sigma 10-20mm lens, and I am thrilled.  I don't quite know what I'm doing with it and I've only been able to do a small test run today on my way home from work - let's just say I will need a lot of practice!  But I'm hopeful, and if you're not too afraid, please do check out my test shots.  Enjoy!


 Yes, I now have one of these fun tree shot thingies too!

Look...just look at my cute shoes!