Friday, January 30, 2009

soft antique bohemian?

I usually have a tough time defining my favorite interior decorating/design style. I appreciate so many colors, fabrics, and 'themes'...but if I had to go with one look, I would choose this one in a heartbeat.

Wednesday, December 31, 2008 post (you'll have to scroll down a bit). Check it out here. It's appropriately titled Eye Candy.

Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Go ahead, laugh!

It's embarrassing how much I've let myself get sucked into the Twilight series.

In fact, I'm now thinking of songs that fit the books; I'm creating soundtracks in my mind for each of them...

I can't help myself. What's a Girl to Do? by Bat for Lashes has Eclipse (third in the series) written all over it! (I'd have to say that Sad Eyes could also make it onto that soundtrack, and possibly New Moon's.)

...back to work :D.

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Weekend Trip


This past Sunday, we took a trip to Gloucester and Rockport. So far, they are the most beautiful East Coast cities I've visited (haven't been to that many places yet!). New York City was fun, but Jose and I both enjoyed this trip a whole lot more. Gloucester and Rockport were peaceful and relaxing; no anxious crowds and noisy city streets.


We went to Halibut Point first then visited the lighthouse featured in The Perfect Storm. We wanted to try some fresh lobster at Roy Moore Lobster Co., but, being complete out-of-towners, it didn't occur to us that it'd be closed for the season. We're definitely going back, though :).


Our trip ended on a sweet note at Nichols Candies, where we loaded up on salt water taffy and tons of chocolate. Nichols chocolate is THE best; I loved their truffles. It's such a cute candy shoppe; the place is divided in two by a wall with a big glass window. The first room consists of the actual store and customers can view the little 'factory' in the adjoining second room through the dividing window. The old candy-making machines they've been using for years are on display there :).



This house (pictured below) is kind of hard to see (click to enlarge), but we both took turns snapping shots of it because we liked it so much (...getting ideas for our future home :).

Monday, January 26, 2009

Yes, please :).

The first, second and fourth.

Can't get enough of these kitchens.

Saturday, January 24, 2009

A free gift

For the creation was subjected to frustration, not by its own choice, but by the will of the one who subjected it, in hope that the creation itself will be liberated from its bondage to decay and brought into the glorious freedom of the children of God.

...the Spirit helps us in our weakness. We do not know what we ought to pray for, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groans that words cannot express.

Romans 8:20 and 26

My Economics professor used to say that nothing's free. Mentally, I thought I could come up with some kind of argument against that statement, then I realized how much it applies to material things. Recently, I began to reflect on how that statement also applies to the intangible. Why am I thinking about this now, even though I've been out of college for a few years? Whenever I hear the term 'free gift', I think about what my professor said about 5 or 6 years ago. (Has it been that long, man, how time flies! I'm getting old. Yes, it's been 6 years; I was 18 when I took that class*.)

How many times do we offer a 'gift' to someone and expect them to give us something in return? I know we feel guilty about it later, especially when we're trying to do it with a selfless spirit, but sometimes, it happens. We're nice to someone we've just met and hope they'll reciprocate. Who knows, a friendship could develop as a result of our kind behavior toward that person, we think to ourselves. It sounds so innocent, but in that moment we have expectations. Of course, we acknowledge the importance of being nice to folks just because it's the 'right thing to do', but sometimes it's pretty tough to not have expectations.

Is it any surprise that we also view God this way? We're told to pray, and we think "Okay, God, look at me, I'm praying...Look! See!!!" It's like we think he's Santa Claus, staring at us from a far away heaven; we're the little porcelain figurines in a snow globe entertaining him.

And because we're honoring his wishes, or so it seems, we suddenly expect him to answer our prayers in our time! "God, why are you taking so long, I've been praying for years..." or "God, you must not exist because I've been praying and I'm not seeing anything come from those prayers! What a waste of time".

Whether we think those exact thoughts or something similar, we fail to realize the following:
  • The spirit that we have while we're praying determines what will come of that prayer.
  • We don't realize that prayer is more for us than him; God's perfect already, and I doubt heaven's boring, so he doesn't need us to entertain him.

I'm sure you've heard it said that we grow closer to God when we pray, but how? It's obvious that we lose touch with people when we stop talking to them, so that'll be the simple example of how. But, also, how can you see God change your life if you're not asking him to show you? Even if you don't believe in God, is it really that ridiculous to ask him a simple question every once in awhile? Things don't happen coincidentally, really.

Think of all the 'coincidences' you've experienced in the past week...
1) You woke up late for work and you're in a bad mood, then you get stuck in traffic because there's an accident up ahead; if you left just 5 minutes earlier, you would've been in that accident.
2) You turn on the radio randomly and suddenly someone's talking about their latest concern. It sounds a whole lot like yours, except they're focusing on the solution to the problem--what you couldn't arrive at on your own.
3) You're randomly browsing the internet and come across a page that talks about the symptoms you've been blowing off for weeks; suddenly, you realize how dumb it was for you to ignore them for so long. You get an ugly diagnosis but it would've been a whole lot uglier if you'd waited one more week to see the doctor.
4) Insert your coincidence here.

I'm sure most of us don't give credit to God for these coincidences, or happy accidents. What we fail to realize is this: had we been praying beforehand (even if it's about something minor), we would've seen how he spared us; how he took something negative and turned it into something positive. I know you've heard that one before.

In those 'duh it's God' moments, I grow closer to him. Afterward, I am also convinced that I need to take advantage of the free gift of prayer more often because God knows (literally) how much I need it.

*Let it be known that I did horribly in that class and didn't enjoy it at all! This is probably the only thing I took away from it :D (and the only thing I really remember my professor saying).

Friday, January 23, 2009

Something to Remember

Do not plan on enjoying your homemade burritos on the plane when they've served 'pizza' for dinner and you're sitting two aisles away from the bathroom. Let's just say the only turbulence won't be the result of the wind beneath your [airplane's] wings.



Glad I didn't get to take part in the complimentary fine dining experience provided by Continental.

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

Something to Remember

This is a direct quote from God's Psychiatry by Charles L. Allen. It's his interpretation of the twenty-third Psalm:
The Lord is my Shepherd...
He maketh me to lie down in green pastures;
He leadeth me beside the still waters.
The sheep is a very timid creature. Especially it is afraid of swiftly moving water...the sheep is a very poor swimmer because of its heavy coat of wool. The sheep will not drink from a moving stream. The sheep will drink only from still waters.

The shepherd does not laugh at the sheep's fears. He does not try to force the sheep. Instead, as he leads his sheep across the mountains and valleys, he is constantly on the watch for still waters, where the thirst of the sheep may be quenched.

If there are still now waters available, while the sheep are resting, the shepherd will gather up stones to fashion a dam across a small stream to form a pool from which even the tiniest lamb may drink without fear.

This petition of the Twenty-third Psalm has wonderful meaning for us. God knows our limitations, and He does not condemn us because we have weaknesses.

Thursday, January 8, 2009

The Dish Ran Away with the Spork???!!!

Preface: Along with the many other things I'd like to do in this life, illustrating a book is one of them. Now I'm trying to choose between wanting to do that and just coming up with a very small greeting card line. (This will not happen until many, many years from now. :) Anyhow, I truly wish I had more time to devote to these poor drawings, but there's bread and dough to be made (I mean that literally and figuratively); someone's gotta cook and bring home the bacon :D. Right now, that's me. So here's my little twisted fairytale comic about the inevitable, the Dish leaving the Spoon so that he can find true happiness with... a spork? Yep! This is the short story that goes with my submission for this week's difficult Illustration Friday theme: Resolve! (Colored Pencil/Pencil/Cartoon)


After years of being tormented by the well-known nursery rhyme that, for decades, paired him with the Spoon, the Dish finally realized he wasn't the Spoonman we thought he was. Despite the fact that there have been various songs depicting him as a Man of the Spoon, he really didn't care for silverware at all. Sure, Forks would literally bend over backwards for him; they'd always gaze at his 'fine china' exterior, but the Dish wanted to be appreciated for more than his looks and the name brand on his back side.

The decision was final. The Dish declared that he was done with spoons and forks; he was left cracked from the stress of failed relationships, after all! It was time to move on, even if others accused him of settling for less. The Dish fell in love with the utensil that's never seen a real dinner table! Made out of plastic and loved by many a cafeteria-eating minor, the Spork won the dish over with her simple ways. She'd had a rough life, being thrown to the bottom of backpacks and withstanding the weight of heavy books; Spork was even chewed on by anxious elementary school students during recess. The truth is, she'd never been with anyone other than sticky Fruit Cup and stinky Tupperware.



And so it goes, the Dish and the Spork were truly meant to be! To this day, neither of them look back to their former lonely days. The Dish really feels he's gotten the best of both worlds and the Spork knows that she finally has a chance to make it into the kitchen utensil drawer some day!

Monday, January 5, 2009

Things I want to remember about 2008

Our first snow:  Surprisingly, Jose was more excited than I was, as it was his first time getting to actually 'play' in the snow (i.e. throw snowballs at my head).  I don't think anyone's ever thrown that many snow balls at me before :D.  Oh yes, and I finally got a white Christmas!  

Celebrating our first year anniversary:  That one year flew by.  It feels like we've known each other forever, but it also feels like we've just met.  I really understand the idea behind loving someone more as time passes.  Before I got married, I was skeptical when others made this claim. That's not the case anymore! I feel blessed that I no longer have to wonder.

Taking the plunge, moving forward:  I should say, moving East :).  The day we found out Jose was accepted at his first-choice law school was one of the best.  For years we each dreamt of moving to this side of the country, for two completely different reasons:  Jose wanted to study at one of the best law schools and I just wanted a white Christmas and snow ;).  Looks like we both got what we wanted! (But I have to admit, when October and November rolled in, Fall definitely became my favorite season!)

The plane ride into Boston:  We were leaving everything we knew behind.  Starting fresh with so much to look forward to.  I still remember how I felt and what I saw as the plane landed. Old New England homes lined up right next to the port, the perfect post card image.  Of all the times I've landed after taking a trip anywhere, I never remember seeing homes like that.  It's not just the way they looked either; I've seen the New England style everywhere.  There was something very inviting about this scene outside the plane's small window.  It almost felt like I was in a life-size snow globe, except there was only the hope of snow.  As soon as I stepped out of the airport, reality hit me in the form of a humid East Coast heat wave.

I can't believe it's already 2009.  I'm posting this about a week after the 1st; I can't keep up with time because I'm trying to take everything in piece by piece.  It isn't that it's too much.  When life was harder, every day seemed like a year because there wasn't much to savor.  Now I can enjoy the aftertaste of every passing moment.



 

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