Monday, December 31, 2012

My New Year's Goals for 2013

I suppose this is the day to be making goals, no?  So let's see... in no particular order...

1. Learn French (basic conversational French, at least).
2. Complete year 2 of my graphic design program.
3. Try 10 new vegetables.
4. Finish 48 books.
5. Create a passive stream of income.
6. Pray and listen to God for at least 20 minutes a day.
7. Build my Etsy knitting inventory up to 300 before next fall.
8. Learn how to make linocut prints.
9. Build my powers of concentration.

And just for curiosity's sake... here's how my goals last year went.

First off, I plan to finish my first year in graphic design school!
Yup! Did that with a 4.0! This year won't be quite that good, but I'm still plugging along!

Secondly, I hope to build my Etsy shop bigger and better.
My shop is definitely bigger and better, and made slightly more money than last year, but not by much. I think I'll have to add this one to my list again!

Third, I have plans to unveil a graphic design Etsy shop as well!
This shop did get started but I ran out of time to work on in about halfway through the year. Designing all day AND all night can be a bit too much cake to eat in one day. I'm now trying to figure out some items for this shop that won't require as much immediate work every time they are purchased.

Lastly, I plan to read 48 books this year!
I actually read 26 books this past year (according to my GoodReads account, where I try to list every book I've read), so I completed just over half my goal. I'm finding that focusing on reading has been difficult since my concentration is completely shot, which I contribute to the over-internet-ifying of my brain. Sigh... I think I'll add fixing that to this year's goals too...

INFP Series - Part 2 - What is my purpose in life?

In case you missed it Friday, I'm studying up on my personality type: INFP. This is the second day in this series! Enjoy!

INFPs, more than other iNtuitive Feeling types, are focused on making the world a better place for people. Their primary goal is to find out their meaning in life. What is their purpose? How can they best serve humanity in their lives? They are idealists and perfectionists, who drive themselves hard in their quest for achieving the goals they have identified for themselves.

Yeah this is definitely true of me. While I don't generally prefer the company of others, I am very aware of wanting to make a contribution to the world with my life. It's probably why I keep striving to find something better to do with my life than be a receptionist. Not that that's a bad job, but it never felt like one that really meant something in the greater scheme of things.

Doing a job, for me, is more about making a difference in some way than it is about getting a paycheck (although that's nice, too). It is often speculated in INFP forums that life would be best if money weren't even an issue and people could just do what they're best at doing and enjoy doing most without needing to worry about whether or not it made enough money to live on.

So what is my specific purpose in life? My gut instinct tells me it has to do with being creative, so that's the direction I'm flinging myself in. I continually check in with my gut and with God to make sure I'm flinging myself in the right direction, but so long as I keep feeling confirmation about that, it's not as important to me that I know my end destination in life, so long as I'm pursuing the direction that feels like it'll be able to get me to a place where I'm able to use my talents and passions for a greater purpose. Make sense? ;)

Saturday, December 29, 2012

5 Etsy Tips & Tricks

Tip #1:

Have as many listings as possible. Preferably over 100.

Tip #2:

If you have multiples of an item and are trying to get your numbers over 100, go ahead and list them as separate listings... just make sure to change the titles slightly from each other so Etsy search engines recognize them as different items.

Tip #3:

Learn how to use a camera.

Tip #4:

Keep track of what colors & styles sell best and make more of those.

Tip #5:

Keep trying new colors and styles whether or not you think they'll sell. It'll help pull more people into your shop and you never know when a new item will catch on!

Friday, December 28, 2012

INFP Series - Part 1 - Trusting my gut.

Since I'm always talking about my personality, I thought it'd be interesting to investigate my INFP personality a little closer and talk about how it relates to me and my experiences.

If you've never taken a Meyers-Briggs personality test, this is a super short version of it that I've found to be surprisingly accurate. I'd love to hear what your personality type is and if you've ever done a more in-depth study on it! The "real" test is hundreds of questions long, if I remember right, so finding a short version that is accurate is great! Here's the other website that I'm using as a guide to spelling out exactly what my personality type is like. I'd like to go through it one paragraph at a time, so hopefully this won't be boring to anyone else.

Here goes!

As an INFP, your primary mode of living is focused internally, where you deal with things according to how you feel about them, or how they fit into your personal value system. Your secondary mode is external, where you take things in primarily via your intuition.

I can really see how this is true in me. I spend so much time daydreaming it's ridiculous. Also if a situation particularly feels threatening or wrong, I can spend days or weeks mulling it over and devising ideas about how the situation should be. I guess you could say I'm an idealistic. I like to think that life operates according to a higher purpose and when things don't always add up to that, my internal monologue gets very frustrated.

According to Wikipedia, "intuition is the ability to acquire knowledge without inference (aka: the process of deriving logical conclusions) and/or the use of reason". Which is not to say that I'm a highly illogical person. Lol. It's more that I tend to make decisions about things based on a gut reaction to a situation rather than on a logically thought out position on something. "Hard" decisions, for me, are generally ones that I've let my head get too much in control of. Once I let my gut decide, it's pretty much a split-second thing.

Thursday, December 27, 2012

Keeping in Touch... Musings of an Introverted Introvert

I don't know if this is just me, but I never really feel the need to keep in touch with people. And I don't mean that in a bad way, but just like... say, from high school, for example. Or even college, for that matter. I mean, they were nice people. I enjoyed them while I was there. But then I moved on and never really looked back. I'm just not sure if that's a bad thing or a good thing.

Usually I don't really think about stuff like this, but then I'll run across someone who still hangs out with their high school buddies or who has get-togethers with people they knew 20 years ago, and it makes me wonder if they're odd or if I'm the odd one for it never having occurred to me to do the same thing.

Granted, I'm an introverted introvert, so perhaps that has a lot to do with it. I've also moved over 20 times in my short life, so maybe moving on and not looking back is in my blood.

Facebook has added an odd layer to this puzzle in recent years, as I've been able to artificially keep in touch with people that I don't live near anymore. It's actually funny how sometimes I can finally get to know the introverted people better online once we aren't in a social situation together, and sometimes the extroverted people I remember better I discover that I wasn't actually that close with in the first place.

It's not even really that I want to keep in close contact with everyone I've ever met. That would definitely wear this little introvert out. But I sometimes wonder if I should by trying harder than I'm naturally inclined to do. Or maybe they've all moved on too and keeping in touch doesn't matter as much as I sometimes think it should.

It's also possible I'm paying too much attention to what American society says I should value. From what I can tell, extroverted tendencies are generally praised much more than introverted ones are. Sad, but true. Some of the best artists, writers, and thinkers are introverts though, so people should take note!

What about you? Do you keep in touch with people you knew 20 years ago? Why or why not? Are you more of an introvert or an extrovert, in general?

Monday, December 17, 2012

Portland Art Museum

Sorry to be such a slacker in the blogging department. I have not yet figured out how to blog consistently when busy with school! Anyway, about a month ago we took a field trip up to Portland to visit the Portland Art Museum. Even though I used to live there, I'd never gotten around to visiting the museum before, so it was so fun to get this opportunity! (Funny how you take for granted the things to do/see that you live around until you no longer live around them!)

Here are a select few images that I took. (I probably have over a hundred photos from this day!)

Sunday, December 16, 2012

More baby pictures for you!

We got back from Southern California last night from a great visit with my sister's family. New little baby Rachel is so cute and already growing so much!

And now for a photo of my sister's other baby, Cinnamon! ;) She's not really a people-kitty, but by the end of our visit she was relaxed enough to sleep near us on the couch!

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Finals Week & A New Addition

I wish you could see our graphics lab this week. Normally we're messy but somewhat orderly in our mess. This week, everyone's practically moved in. Papers are everywhere, blankets and pillows abound, food and lots of coffee clutter the kitchen in the corner. Finals week is upon us and everyone is walking around in a sort of zombie-like, half-asleep state, cutting, pasting, matting, drawing, and stippling (okay actually that project is done). Our normally talkative group is huddled over their drawing boards in a hushed panic as each deadline looms over our heads. If I wasn't right there with them, it'd almost be a little comical! ;)

Oh, also... I have a new niece! Rachel Joy. Born this morning, happy and healthy! So adorable, isn't she?

Sunday, December 2, 2012

Customer Service Nightmare: Utrecht Art

Oh my goodness. Don't ever buy online from Utrecht Art Supplies. I don't think I've met such poor customer service in a long time.

So back on October 15th, I ordered some tech pens that were on sale from them for a project at school. I figured it'd take a week or two to receive, and since our project wasn't starting for about another month, that'd be plenty of time. They're having a great sale and the item states that it's in stock, so... perfect!

About three weeks go by, classes are busy, time flies by, and as everyone else in my class is showing off their new pens, I suddenly realize mine have never come. How strange.

I go online to check the status of my order... it says "Processing". Processing? Was my card bad? What's the deal? And more importantly, why hadn't they told me about this sooner? I'd expected to receive my item by now and it still hasn't left their warehouse? What's going on?

So I email them and inquire. The response back was that these are backordered indefinitely and that I can call this number to cancel if I want. What? This couldn't have been told to me three weeks ago?

I called the number and tried to cancel. I was planning on heading into the city that Friday so figured if I could get my money back in time that I could just walk into an art store there and purchase a set.

Well, the nice lady on the phone told me that they weren't really back-ordered, they had just run out and the truck delivering them had gotten stuck in the hurricane. Okay, I can understand that. She said they were expecting the truck to get through on Friday and would ship this out to me immediately. My project was starting the following Wednesday, but I figured that I could borrow some pens for a couple days if need be. I said okay.

Another week goes by. My order still says, "Processing", so I email again, explaining that I'd just talked to someone who had told me they were going to be shipped out soon and what was the status of my order please? The email response was that they'd probably be yet another week. *facepalm*

So what could I do? I waited. School got busy again. By this point I had some permanent loaners from another student, so I didn't really think about it again for awhile as this project went on. About another week goes by and one of my classmates asks how the saga of getting my pens was going. Oh! I think. And go back online to check. I'm sure you can guess what my order status was... "Processing".

This time I emailed them and ripped them a new one. I told them I couldn't believe they STILL had me in processing a good month and a half after I'd originally ordered these pens. Why hadn't they contacted me sooner? Why had they repeatedly told me it'd just be another week? Why had they listed this item for sale in the first place if they knew it wasn't available for sale? I told them I wanted my money back and would never order from them again because I couldn't believe how horrible this experience had been.

Another week goes by... I heard nothing from them.

I go back in to check my order status. This time it's actually changed to, "Cancelled Order... Due to Customer changing their mind." Can you see steam coming out of my ears? Changing my mind?? NO! I did NOT change my mind! I wanted these a month and a half ago and they never sent them!! And not for my lack of trying to get them. But I told myself to take a deep breath and remember that they probably just clicked a drop-down menu choice to fill that spot in. Yelling at them for a stupid filled-in reason won't help anything, even though it feels like insult added to injury.

I emailed them again for a refund since I'd never seen one come through my account. I inquired also as to why I hadn't heard from them since requesting my order be cancelled. To their credit, they actually responded within 24 hours this time, telling me, "Valued Customer", that they could not do a refund because they'd never charged my card in the first place.


I don't know whether to be relieved or angry. I mean, seriously? They never charged my card? It's been nearly two months since I placed my order. I had financial aid then, which I used to order all my school supplies. Now my bank account's almost dry. What if that $75 had suddenly popped out of my account months after I'd ordered this? I realize I should've probably paid closer attention to my bank account to realize that it'd never come out, but I'd just sort of assumed it had, since I placed this order so long ago! Sigh...

In any case, the saga is over, and I'm never ordering from them again. I have no idea if this is typical of their customer service or not, but it sure left a sour taste in my mouth being a first-time customer and being treated so dismissively. COMMUNICATION, people! They should've been straight with me from the beginning and told me the item was unavailable, that they hadn't charged my card yet, and would I like to order something new or cancel my request? Why did it take me calling about my order a month later to start the (albeit misleading) customer service train? That was absolutely the wrong way to deal with a backordered item.


Don't list something's for sale if it's not. Let your customer know immediately if there's a problem with the order... not three weeks later when they finally realize it themselves. Don't just tell them it'll be another week if it's not going to be. Don't blame it on a hurricane if that's not the reason, since that only makes the customer feel like they're being too pushy when it's really your problem, not theirs. And please, oh please, don't wait until they contact you to start communication with them, because they're probably already mad by that point. Be proactive about these things, please.

Saturday, December 1, 2012

Stocking Stuffers!

I just introduced a new line of iPhone cozies to my Etsy shop! These are the colors I've got made up so far, but I'll probably be adding a few more this weekend. I thought it'd be fun to have a quick and easy item people could buy for stocking stuffers!

Sunday, November 25, 2012

If I could design The Amazing Race

Just to be clear, I've only been watching this show for about three seasons, but it's already driving me nuts with it's strange rules that seem to reward randomness instead of actually playing the game.

For one thing... why does it seem like every other week is a non-elimination leg? This doesn't seem like a very competitive way to set up a game. Can you imagine any other game giving someone a freebie every other turn? Why do they think that'd be entertaining to watch? I would think as a player, too, that it would make that leg feel like a pointless waste of time because you're not any closer to being the final team than you were a leg ago.

What if instead of non-elimination legs, let teams earn a pass that would allow them to not be eliminated if they came in last. There'd only be one pass in the game at any one time, so teams wouldn't be eligible to earn another one until whichever pass was out there had been used. Teams could also choose to spend their pass to let them skip through part of a leg if they wanted (instead of using it to get them through an elimination), or they could keep it as long as they wanted to make sure no other teams could have a chance at it. This way it comes down to a team's strategy, rather than just a random fluke in the game, to determine if a team stays in the game or not.

Speaking of staying in the game, have you noticed that it doesn't seem to gain a team any advantage to come in first during a given leg? Teams tend to get bunch up around flight-times or businesses not being open, so having a five-hour lead time, for example, doesn't really help. What if there were a clear advantage to being first? Like, maybe they had the choice to either start the next leg immediately or enjoy a luxury hotel (thereby giving them more energy for the next leg). Every other team starts at the starting point the next morning like they do now, but potentially (depending on the strategy they want to go with), the winning team could jump out in front with a 12-hour lead time. Theoretically... this could cause a winning team to end up a leg or two ahead of everyone else, which I think would make things pretty interesting. Even if they chose to stay in the hotel instead, they'd have a psychological advantage over the other teams, which could prove to be just as valuable as a time advantage.

Another thing I would change would be modes of transportation allowed within a country. Every team should be given a map (or be made to find one) and a bus schedule and told to figure it out. None of this taxi stuff. Please. They should be allowed to rent a car, take a bus, walk... anything that requires the use of their own wits and sense of direction, rather than those of someone else who drives around the city for a living. Taking taxis either eliminates the challenge of navigating a new city, or it gives a team a severe disadvantage if their driver happens to get lost (thereby making the team late by no reason of their own). If the teams had to get themselves everywhere, there'd be no one else to blame, which seems a lot more like the spirit of the game in the first place.

I guess, overall, I like the idea of a race around the world, but the current way this game is set up makes it feel like "winning" a leg is pretty arbitrary. Teams usually are very bunched up and coming in first doesn't really give any advantage in the race. To make it worse, losing teams are only sent home about half the time, taking the sting out of doing poorly. It would be a much more interesting show if there were clear ways to get ahead in the game, as well as regular eliminations to keep things moving along towards the finish line at a good pace.

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

YouTube Drawing Tutorials

I found a YouTube channel today filled with some great drawing tutorials! This girl uses Copic markers to fill in the color and shadows on some of her drawings, which I've never heard of before but now I really, really want!! Have you used these markers before? Would you recommend them? They look to me a bit like watercolors in marker form. Would that be an accurate description?

Here are a couple of my favorite videos from this channel, although she has a bunch more if you have time to browse. :)

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Reading, Drawing, and more Reading and Drawing

Here's a peek at what I've been up to these days...

This is a pencil drawing based on a photograph of an composition of cash register tape that we arranged. It's supposed to look like a Christmas-style ribbon, all loopy, and if we shade it right, should demonstrate trompe l'oeil, which is French for "deceive the eye", meaning that the flat drawing should appear like a 3-dimensional thing actually extruding off the page.

We've also got lots of reading, note-taking, and comprehension questions this year! It's easy to get behind on this since the actual turn-in projects always seem to take precedence. If I can find the money, I might get a bunch of next term's books to read during my Christmas break to get a little ahead of the game! That would sure save myself a headache as I get more busy with projects next term. (Easier said than done, of course, since I tend to like to relax on my vacations!)

Sunday, November 4, 2012

Daylight Savings Time

Sorry for being such a bad blogger this Fall! How was everyone's October? Did you remember to set your clocks back this weekend? Have you voted (or do you plan to)?

In other news, I re-joined Facebook this weekend. I deleted my personal account two years ago because I was tired of the drama of repeatedly discovering that they had "accidentally" reset everyone's privacy settings to "public" since "you all wanted it that way, right?". I hate that Facebook plays fast and loose with our privacy and never seems to have any accountability for that.

But... I kept having people ask me, "You're on Facebook, right?" and I got tired of explaining all that. What's the point of a political stance when you're the only one making it? So despite my reservations about the direction of Mark Zuckerberg's moral compass, I've decided to put that thought aside for the sake of keeping in touch with everyone I've ever met.

Oh and... did you know they added a House MD game on there? So fun! ;D

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Graphite Perspective Study

I keep waiting until I have time to do a proper post... and then I keep not having time to think of something brilliant to say. So my apologies to anyone who has wondered where I've been lately. School has been keeping me BUSY!! It's the 5th week of classes already, can you believe it? I'm going to try really hard to just post little posts every day or two instead of waiting until inspiration hits me.

Here's what I've been working on for the last couple weeks (there's acetate over the drawing so unfortunately I have a little ceiling light reflected across the drawing in the photo).

Anyway, this is all done in pencil (mostly 4B and 6B soft pencils). It started as a rough sketch, then was scanned in and re-drawn in Illustrator, then printed out and shaded in about 5 times until we knew exactly how we wanted the final piece to look... THEN we transferred it onto illustration board and shaded it very carefully until it looked "realistic" (or as realistic as balls and checkerboards in space can look).

And here's what the weather was doing this afternoon as I left school. It's been a pretty rainy week, but the sun came out briefly today and WOW!!! I just love fall-time, don't you?

Saturday, October 20, 2012

Fall 2012 TV Pilots Review

I haven't had much time to stay caught up on the new Fall shows, but I've tried to watch at least the pilots of the ones that intrigued me. Here's what I thought...


666 Park Avenue 


Definitely worth watching. Reminds me of a Stephen King novel. A couple takes a job at a hotel where things aren't always what they appear to be.



Pretty interesting so far. Robin Hood meets Batman. Hopefully it won't devolve into just another villan-of-the-week show.

Update --> 1 THUMB DOWN

Upon further thought, I don't have time for this show. I'm several weeks behind and don't have any motivation to continue it at this time. Which... says something about the stickiness of this show... just saying.

Beauty and the Beast


Pretty decent so far. I watched this pilot awhile ago and it isn't sticking in my head, so that's not a good sign. I remember enjoying it though, so we'll see if it continues to make it in my weekly line-up.

Update --> 1 THUMB DOWN

After trying to watch episode 2, I realized that this is just another CSI clone. I was hoping for an interesting supernatural drama, not a murder-of-the-week cop show.

Chicago Fire


Apparently the entire internet hates this show, but I found it to be both interesting and entertaining. I like the characters and I like that this show has a good balance of "soap opera" and action.



I was all set to hate this show that cast Dr. Watson as a female, but it actually works surprisingly well. As long as there's no romantic entanglement between Sherlock and Watson, I think it'll be a winner.

Update --> 1 THUMB DOWN

I'm back-burner-ing this one too. It's really not making me want to watch more, which is a sign that it's time to move on.

Emily Owens, MD


The super-sacherine pre-season commercials for this show made me think I'd hate it, but the show itself was actually pretty good. I doubt it'll gain much traction beyond a season or two, but for now it's cute.

Update --> 1 THUMB UP

This show is definitely growing on me. I could do without the constant inner dialogue of the main character, but other than that, it's a pretty interesting storyline.

Last Resort


I really wanted to like this show. (Hello! Ben from Felicity is on it!!) But... major snooze-fest. If you like military dramas, this will probably hold your interest, but I need more soap in my dramas.

Made in Jersey


There's a little too much blue-collar vs. white-collar references, but other than that, it has potential. I watched the pilot a long time ago and haven't been motivated to watch the second episode though, so...

Update --> 1 THUMB DOWN

I don't know what it was about this show, but it felt really tedious and bogged down. I couldn't make it through the second episode, so decided to let it go.

The Mob Doctor


Greys' Anatomy meets The Sopranos. A doctor gets mixed up with the Mob and ends up working for them... while continuing to work her doctor job. I'm looking forward to the rest of the season.



Way too much country music for my taste, but the storylines have me pretty intrigued so I'll probably keep watching.

Update --> 1 THUMB DOWN

I tried episode two this weekend and couldn't get more than halfway through it. Too much political drama with the main character's husband that really weighs down the storyline. I like some of the other characters, but not enough to continue watching.



The previews for this were way more interesting than the actual show has been. I will continue watching because dystopian futures intrigue me, but they better get on with some actual plotlines soon.

Update --> 1 THUMB DOWN

I got behind on this show and then started hearing rumors of how boring it was becoming, so... I'm moving on from this one too. It may be one to Netflix this summer, but for now, it's not going to stay on my weekly rotation.

Update (one year later) --> 1 THUMB UP

I did indeed go back and find this on Netflix and found it pretty enjoyable. I'm about halfway through season and it's pretty interesting, although the pacing of the storyline is a bit slow. Definitely nowhere near as good as The Walking Dead, but still pretty good.



The pilot was intriguing, although I'm not fighting to not hate that this is basically a Western. The acting is good though, so I'll probably keep watching.

Update --> 1 THUMB DOWN

As with several of the others, I don't have enough time to watch everything and this show just isn't beckoning the way some of the others are, so... moving on...

Friday, October 19, 2012

It's a rainy Friday here in Oregon

Hello from Busy Student Land! It's finally the weekend!! ;D

I am so happy to have three new sales reps for Desert Rose Knits. Maybe you're next? If you are an extroverted, marketing type and want to earn some extra cash promoting hand-knit items from the comfort of your armchair... you just might be the perfect candidate for the job!

Also, in case you were curious... here's what Oregon is looking like these days. Isn't it wonderful? (No seriously... rain is my favorite weather, for some reason. Don't laugh, I've lived in Oregon 33 years, I can't help it!)

Sunday, October 14, 2012

Calling all extroverts!

I want to try an experiment to see if I can get my Etsy knit shop off the ground. I'm a terrible marketer, largely because I'm a very introverted introvert, but I know that a lot of you are extroverts, so...

How would YOU like to earn weekly commissions by becoming one of my sales reps? ;)

Here's how it'll work. You'll get a 5% off coupon code to my shop. This code will be specific to you and any customer that uses it will get 5% off their order. Then once a week, I will send you a 5% commission based off the sales that you brought in that week. So you get a 5% commission and your friend gets 5% off their order. Win win! And yes, you even get a commission if you buy something for yourself using the 5% code (meaning a total of 10% off your order after you've received your commission for that week).

The ideal sales rep would be:
  1. Someone who has 200+ blog followers, Twitter followers, or FB followers.
  2. Someone who feels comfortable promoting a wonderful handmade product!
  3. Someone who is extroverted and passionate about marketing. 
In addition to this, you must:
  1. Have a PayPal account. This is how you'll get paid.
Basically you can find customers any way you want. This should ideally include social media (blogs, Twitter, etc), but you can totally advertise wherever and however feels natural to you. You're the extroverted marketer type and I will let you do your job. Just make sure your customers use the coupon code so you'll get credit for the sale!

If you feel like you would make a good sales rep, even if you don't meet any of the criteria, send me an email telling me why you think you should get the job. I'll pick 5-10 of the best qualified applicants and send you your coupon codes!

Saturday, October 13, 2012

Are you a No-Reply Blogger?

I get a lot of great comments on this blog, and I love replying to them as much as I can. I try to respond to everyone by email, which seems more likely to get a conversation going, and I try really hard to answer everyone, unless the comment is something like, "Nice," which is hard to know how to respond to. But in general, if someone says something interesting, it's nice to write back, and a lot of times it actually leads to a conversation about a subject we both have an interest in, so that's pretty cool.

Lately though... I've been getting a huge amount of  No-Reply Blogger  comments. Are you familiar with this concept? Basically there's a setting in your Blogger profile that allows you to "Show Your Email Address", which all that really means is that when you comment on my blog and I get your comment, I then have your email address to be able to respond to you.

If you don't check that option... it shows up in my email as being from  "No-Reply Blogger" , which basically means I can't reply at all to your comment. A lot of times it'll still link to your Google Plus page or to your blog, so sometimes if I have time, I will try to track you down and answer you that way, but... that get's pretty tedious and disjointed, so I usually don't go that route.

So... what I'm asking you is, can you go right now to your Google profile and please make sure you have this setting turned on so I can respond to your comments? 

I have received so many great conversation-starter comments recently that I can't reply to because they come from  No-Reply Bloggers . I really don't want to be ignoring you guys, but you've got to meet me halfway here!

If you're not sure if you're a  No-Reply Blogger , leave a comment below asking me about it and I promise to track you down this time and let you know. ;) If you don't hear from me in 24 hours, that means I couldn't figure out how to track you down and you ARE indeed a  No-Reply Blogger .

In that case, here are a couple of great tutorials on how to fix this:

  1. {If you're NOT using Google Plus}
  2. {If you ARE using Google Plus}

Sunday, October 7, 2012

2nd Week of Classes

Greetings from student-land! How is life out there in the free world? Lol. Just kidding. ;P

I really am having fun, but it's easy to remember the bygone days of summer (aka: two weeks ago) and wish I were able to knit and watch TV all day like I did then. I suppose in the long, overarching scheme of things, I'm going to school so I can work a job that can afford me time off to be able to knit and watch TV all day, so... that's something to look forward to, right? Lol.

These are my books for the semester. I'm already behind, believe it or not. I was planning to read as I went along... and then the "real" assignments were assigned (meaning those that the teachers collect so they have to be done on time), so reading got shoved to the back burner.

I made it the top priority on my "To Do" list for the weekend to finish last week's reading, start (and hopefully finish) next week's reading, and try to get a little further ahead than that if I could.

What actually happened was this...

Yes, that is the game, Civilization (Civilization IV: Colonization, to be exact). See... I was reading about art/design history and the inventions of writing, laws, map-making... if you've played these Civilization games at all, you'll know that that's exactly where they start. So my homework made me do it!! I started remembering bygone days of exploring new maps, setting up civilizations, and discovering how to get to the moon before the other countries could figure it out...

And I ended up playing Civilization for like 8 hours yesterday. I wonder if my teachers would count that as extra-credit? I'm learning about art history... sort of.

Okay, so then today I sat down to be really productive... my computer in the other room so I couldn't start another game of Civilization... and then I started reading about the Code of Hammurabi. This made me really curious what the Code actually said (in case you haven't studied it in an art or ancient history class... the Code of Hammurabi was the first known written set of laws). So... I grabbed my iPhone and looked up a translation of this code (which was fascinating by the way).

via: Wikipedia

Long story short, I only read for about a half hour (and barely scratched the surface - it's a loooooong list of laws!), but it was still very fascinating. From my very quick review of this Code, it seems to me to be over-erringly just... in the sense that wrong is always punished and right is always rewarded... but the punishment is usually death (for stealing... for kidnapping... for wrongly accusing someone of stealing or kidnapping...). I would've loved to keep reading actually, but my guilt from playing Civilization all day yesterday kicked in, so... I came over here to tell you about my procrastination instead. ;P

Seriously though... I do have an Art History paper that I have to do this term that I could totally do on the Code of Hammurabi if I wanted to. We can pick anything up to around 300 BCE to write about, so long as it includes some reference to art, craft, sculpture, etc. So... basically the door's wide open (in fact, the teacher's chief requirement was that we don't bore ourselves). I could write about anything from the search for the Garden of Eden to the history of knitting, so long as I can find some way to tie it back into art (which isn't that difficult, since most fascinating subjects have been painted about or are themselves an artform).

And here I am rambling on again instead of doing my homework. I just wanted to say hello to everyone out there, and hopefully I'll get in another blog post before next weekend! I miss you all!!

What's your favorite thing about Fall?

Friday, October 5, 2012

Just a small little rant about Grey's Anatomy (Contains SPOILERS)

Can I just say... if you haven't started watching Grey's Anatomy yet this season, start with episode 2 and then go back and watch episode 1. It'll make a LOT more sense.

>>>>>>SPOILERS BELOW<<<<<<


First of all... I spent the first half of episode one wondering why Cali was crying so much. Had Arizona died? Did I miss something? Everything else (mostly) made sense, although it seemed strange that Meredith and Derek constantly referred to vague things like, "Are you sure you want to do this today?" or "It's almost 5:00!" I hate it when writer's write a script that way, intentionally keeping something obviously vague.

When they killed George (way back a million seasons ago), it was a much more elegant script-writing, I'm just saying. I mean, I didn't see that coming, during the episode, and after the reveal it made you think, "Wait! That was under my nose the whole time and I didn't even see it!" But with this new vagueness, it constantly poked at me that I wasn't in on the joke, which was actually rather irritating.

But I digress...

So because I kept feeling like I was missing why Cali was crying (it gave me this nagging sense that I'd missed an episode), I actually Googled "Did Arizona die?" thinking that maybe I'd forgotten a part of the finale from last season.

And... if you've seen this episode... you'll know what I found... a headline that basically said something to the effect of, "Arizona loses a leg and Mark Sloane dies." And it's like... "Wait!!! That was NOT was I was searching for!! Way to spoil the ending!"

So... yes I shouldn't have been Googling while I was watching a show and expected not to see any spoilers, but... would it have been too much to ask to let things play out in order so I don't feel like I missed something? It sucked the drama right out of the episode because I felt like I was coming into the season mid-stride and spent half the time trying to orient myself.

Then I watched this week's episode and it suddenly all made sense. This was where I thought we were going to start last week... at the plane crash and what happened afterwards. I might even have to go back and watch last week's now because that's what feels like should happen next in the sequence of things. Why are you constantly rearranging what feels normal to me, Shonda Rhimes?

Sunday, September 30, 2012

Meet a Designer: Rebecca Rebouche

Here's a beautiful video of a fabulous artist. I love how her joy and love of life shines through so much in this video. It really makes me want to paint and draw and daydream. :)
{Site} {Blog} {Etsy}

New Orleans Artists РRebecca Rebouché from Anthropologie on Vimeo.

{Linking up with Kristen Victoria}

Biology Project - Week 1

Today I started my biology project. We're supposed to study a single plot of land for 8 weeks and report on our findings each week. We were given a field guide with questions and tasks to guide us (find a leaf, measure the air temperature, etc) and are basically supposed to behave like scientists studying a new environment.

We were told to try to find a site that measures roughly 50x100 feet; has meadow and trees, but no water running through it; is not mowed or cultivated; and is ideally close to home. So... as I half-heartedly observed my town, nothing jumped out as even remotely meeting the requirements. This is Oregon, so there's water everywhere (or blackberries, which are equally impenetrable). Also, do you know how hard it is to find a field that hasn't been mowed or isn't part of someone's wheat crop?

I finally settled on the garden plot out in our backyard. We've let it go wild over the past year, so I think it qualifies on most accounts (although it's only 50x25 feet in dimension and there are no trees in it). I think it's diverse enough for an interesting project though, so I made an executive decision that it was "good enough".

This afternoon, I spent about 45 minutes at this lab site, observing what I could observe. At first glance I didn't think there'd be anything living left to observe in there, since everything seemed to be dead. Soon though, I realized it was actually teeming with life!

Here are photos of some of the plants and wildlife that I observed (I also saw a small white butterfly, some smaller flies/bugs/mosquitos of some sort, and a honeybee, but they were too quick to photograph).

Can you spot the non-native organism in one of these pictures?

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