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Wow... It's a good thing that I am finding beauty in the hidden. Because today, I encountered just how bumpy life can most definitly be. I think I was being prepared.

Just a simple post...
Today has been kinda rough...
Going to keep looking up at those beautiful sillouettes.

-finding beauty in the hidden-

So, most people who know me know that i lOVE green. green, yum, yum yum. Love how it shoots through the earth, and little blades of new grass, new sprigs of leaves pop through.

But just recently, this weekend. I don't know... maybe it was listening a little too much to Andrew Bird's "The Privateers" or "Souverian" off the new Noble Beast. But I was feeling, and still am... quite peaceful and happy with stepping back, taking a deeper look, and contemplating the hidden beauty in things. So, it was cold, I was out... and I looked up... and realized just how incredible & beautiful those bare, crisp detailed lines of trees are against the pallet of a soft fading winter sky.

It was a fun little treat. So many elements. So much that made my designer brain happy, all those angles. Like an intricate and beautiful home-made piece of black lace filled with texture against these pale muted tones. So many crevices and contrast, its enough to really enjoy and just take in. (lets hope I don't run into a lamp-post looking up so much ; )

I mean, I'm not saying that I never look up. Would be in trouble then. And yes, I've noticed the trees, and noticed the sky before. And some of you might be like, what... shes crazy for taking pictures of trees. But ya know what?
That's who I am. And those are the types of things that I do. But this weekend, there was just this awe.

So, I've posted some of what I see as pretty intricate little pieces to this part of January that might be easy to miss.

What things do you see as beauty in the everyday?


Favorite #3



Favorite #2





Favorite #1

Dresses!

Ooooh!

I know, shallow and random. But anyone who knows me, knows that i LOVE clothes. yup. Cannot help it. I do need to cut back. Am running out of room in my closet.

So, in the midst of COLD COLD slushy & grey weather, I am dreaming of pretty, lovely, little lady dresses that are so fun to wear in the spring, or in some other make-believe fantastic land where its bright and sunny, and you can skip down a lovely brick street in some beautiful foreign place, sipping champagne, eating gelato and staring at the ocean. Or, were in a random shampoo commercial.

So, IF I had a billion dollars. Well, there is a LOT that I would do with that moola probably before going shopping. But being girly (and since this is my blog, and I’m just dreaming right now), I would purchase these three in their order by Oscar de la Renta...
( I cannot escape #1 for some reason, I just love those lines)

1. yummy lines-

2. ooh, tailored texture

3. sweet angles, white paisley


So... if YOU have a billion dollars... you can buy em HERE.

What is one little random silly treat you would buy with a billion dollars?

go away snow-

Ok, so I know...
I am grumbling.
But come one SNOW???? Snow, you are not my friend right now.






Ugh. Man... tired of this. Want to bask in the HOT sun right this minute. Have lived in the city for a long time now, have lived in the Chicago land area most of my life. And I know, I know... I choose to live here. This weather is nothing new- I am just venting.

But... seriously.... I am SO tired of this fluffy white stuff that seems to be invading so much of our lives.

• Tired of driving to work, even leaving much earlier and it being a shot in the dark as to what time I will really arrive.

• Tired of being wet when I finally climb in the car.

• Tired of scraping the car off everyday and most likely getting stuck again the next.

• Tired of side streets, no room to park at all because there is mounds of this frozen whiteness everywhere. People, placing shovels, chairs, (yes, even little tables) in their “spot” on road.

• I know... once again, I chose to live here...

• Shoveling, digging, defrosting, scraping.

• Yucky slush and grey snow. Cars that drive into this mess, and yuck, splash you.

• So done with potholes, battery problems, and expensive car issues.

• Having to cancel plans with friends or loved one because it it’s oop! Snowing, again, yeah...

• Slipping on ice. Watching out for scary drivers who seem to actually drive 90 miles per hour on 90. SLOW down crazies.

• Being SOO cold when I wake up in the morning.

• That day... that yucky, horrible day... it took me 4 1/2 hours to get home. When it should have taken 45 minutes.

• Not being able to do one of my favorite things, go for a nice refreshing run outside + listen to my ipod.

• Not being able to wear very cute shoes out, just banging up my salty wet black cowboy boots right now.




But- I know... I’m being Debbie-downer right now-
So, I guess a better thing is to try to list or rack my brain about some of the nice little stuff that comes with winter- (hmmmm.......... thinking, thinking)

• Being cozy inside. Just having a nice cozy-movie, indoors, and fun time at home. And who really does not like just relaxing at home.

• Cute scarves! & Cute chunky sweaters!

• You have no choice, but to slow down a bit. So I guess that this is really a good thing.

• The actual “look” of snow falling, it can be pretty I guess. & watching kids happily sledding and making snowmen. I remember being elated as if I had won the lottery when I was a kid and my brother and I could go outside and build “forts”.

• Warm drinks, like yummy teas and mulled wine.

• That chance to catch up on all those tv shows that people tell ya to watch, and the chance to really put Netflix & instant Netflix to the test.

• Not complaining about how incredibly unbearably hot it is, not running that energy eating air-conditioner.

• When ya have a big get-together/dinner at some ones house, if something needs to be chilled or in the fridge and there is no room, just stick it outside on the patio!

• Just having to cuddle up a little bit closer to your loved one to warm up.

• Ice-skating if you are so inclined.

• Winter Clearance sales!!. Hmmm.. not sure if this has anything to do with the snow- but since I’m making this list... lets just go with it.

• RJ Grunts temperature soup. Yes... if it’s 5 degrees out... ya pay 5 cents. If its 15 degrees out, ya pay 15 cents. If its 10 below... hmmm... I think it might be free??? Maybe I should check tomorrow. Yum... Grunts butternut squash soup. DIVINE.

• Just being inside. Time to finally clean that space, read that book, make that phone-call. Listen and dance around your warm home to that lovely new song.

ok, I'm done.

picture relish

This past weekend, had fun with my camera-










Most of these are over by lakeview area.
Very much inclusive to the dearly- loved (& Husbands candy store) "Reckless Records"


smiles


If you are so inclined you can find and download a bunch of really nice Vintage Actions for photoshop here to play with-

Thank You lovely’s

Last night got some long-overdue time with a couple of wonderful girlfriends, Kerri and Jessie. These ladies and I go way back... They are both truly gems, each with their own unique style and talents. We were all in college together & even had our senior show together (along with Jessie’s talented now-husband Jon), it has been so fun to see where life has brought us, and all the stories and change that have come in the past years. These ladies are priceless & I wouldn’t trade our friendship for millions of dollars.

Both of these chicas are incredibly, talented graphic designers (and artists). Their keen sense of creativity and sensitivity to form and communication through design is truly awesome. I am so proud of the both of them. It has been over a month and half since I’ve actually gotten to see their faces, yikes!! We obliviously had tons to catch up on. I think we could have even gone on for another bundle of hours. They also make me laugh so hard, and know how to be incredibly genuine.

**A pic of the three of us from this summer -ahh, summer, where did it go?*


I know they are each super busy, but I want them to start blogs as well, hee hee... nudge... nudge... I’m sure they will one day-

We usually do “Christmas presents” after the holidays, its relaxing and much more laid back. Plus there is LOTS of conversation to catch up on after the break. So I am going to send out a little “Thank You” for the wonderful gifts my friends-

Lovely #1:
Kerri got us each treats that reminded her of each of our styles, she’s so good at this, she pays attention very well to all kinds of details- I was treated with a really cool & unique wall-art piece, with a vintage swirl style to it, lush colors, fun design and unique little bit of sparkle added, she cot it from one of her favorite shops- “Cocoon”. She tells me this is one of her favorite places to go to- I can’t cannot wait to frame and hang up... hmmm... maybe in my office at home, or here, or living room, or... Man, I’m going to have a hard time deciding, its so cool! She also treated us with sweet eyeshadow and cool beaded picture hooks.
That thoughtful lady-



Lovely #2:
Jessie had just come back recently from spending the new year and parts of the holidays in Paris -w- her hubby sis, and brother in law! Wowzers!! What an awesome way to ring in 2009! Her stories and pictures are so much fun and full of style. From the looks of things, Paris suited miss Jessie perfectly. She gave each of us these beautiful. lush, crinkly, gun-metal grey scarves that are most definitely unique and very “Paris”. You definitely feel like a little queen with style when you wear them. Kerri and I were thrilled. Yeah! I cannot wait to wear mine, I think I have a pair of shoes that will go perfectly. She also treated us to these special lip-ointments.
Another thoughtful lady-

Surprise Lovely #3
When I got home last night, there was a random & surprise gift on the coffee table from my #1 buddy- My hubby. He got me this sweet Ingmar Bergman dvd collection. Includes some of his best & most intriguing films. with 6 dvds in it! He always knows how to make me smile. He was out with Some of his best guy-friends last night too. Black and white older movies like these with complex meanings and meatier writing makes my head & heart happy. Whoohoo... Happy winter days in the house, curled up with dialogue-laden films. Lots to watch. For Christmas, he had given me the Criterion collection of his most early and older work. What a great guy. Thoughtful man.

So! I am excited for the weekend to come, scarves to wear, films to watch, pictures to hang. Thanks you guys! Feel so spoiled on a Thursday evening. Ready for a chilly, cozy weekend at home.

*Cheers ***Happy Friday!!! ***Stay warm if ya live where its chilly!

-little reminder-


As life progresses
. As uncertain as life sometimes may feel. Do not forget the unique stamp and sweet richness of life. For me, I’m slowly realizing that life’s uncertainties are one of the things that actually make it layered, complex and even yes... beautiful. Remembering this and actually intertwining it into the day.

For 2009 and the entry into the new. I will wake up in the morning, and remember that it’s how my heart, inner core, and willingness to trust and listen to that gentle voice of PEACE will make the largest stamp...
A little reminder to this crazy brain of mine that likes to scatter at times. To learn how to have that maturity this year to actually take a crisp deep breath... and learn how to trust and have peace...

I am carrying this with me into the new...

Things of random about C you might not know-

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Little Random things that I like:

Exploring new and completely different places some ONE DAY...
• A big bowl of Multi-grain Cherrios and Rice Krispies (but not together)
Lines, clean lines, linear items, symmetry
Squiggles too
• Real, genuine, people
• Text messages
• New magazines
• Indy-artsy Graphic Novels (so drawn to Drawn and & Quarterly)
• Books, books, books... the words, the writers, the process, the nostalgia, the covers, the whole shebang, Myopic Books
Vegetables (Valley Produce and Stanleys)
• Good lighting & SUCH for GOOD LIVING (some say my taste is too dark, that i need glasses)
• The beach
• Tunnels
• Lovely PRINTS
• Renegade-handmade-like ITEMS & people who can use their talents to make money in creative ways
• A nice red wine
• Quarters (there are SO many uses, esp. with living in the city)
• Clothes!!!!! New dresses and shirts esp. YUM.
Movies in general, Indy Movies, Old movies, Arthouse films, I watch at least 4 a week-Movies with Lots of dialogue too... Subtitles, you name it...
• Gardening & growing
• Lovely Fonts and lovely usage
knitting
• cheese popcorn
• Unique jewelry
• Vintage finds
Memoirs
Flight of the Conchords
Boots
Writers
Rainy days & Thunderstorms
• Awesome set stylists
• Pedicures
• WONDERFUL blogs! + good people... click HERE
• Plays & well written productions
• Target
• The Movies “Love Actually,” “Juno,” “The Departed,” “Shawshank Redemption,” “PS I love You,” “Roman Holiday,” & “The Dark Knight” (& getting to randomly be an extra in it was fun)
The color green. A rich grey. Being Green...
• Somewhat tailored looks (collars, blazers, buttons, dress pants, pencil skirts)
• Panang Curry
Taking & sneaking PHOTOS & loving those who do!!
COLOR
Cleaning, organizing, order
• Expensive candles-smellies for the home (oooh, a wiff of Asrai Garden)
• Shopping all by myself (with friends is great, but there is just something relaxing when your all alone)
• Walking through a town to explore. Walking a city
• The library
• Macs
• Cooking-new recipes
• Leaves
• Life
Modern art
• Smellies- the smell of lavender, mens Cologne, lilies
brand spanking new shoes
• A fantastic vocabulary
• Music, music, music, Reckless Records, RCRDLBL.com
Cafes
Interior design
• I'm a news/media junkie -NPR
This American Life
• San Fran
Chicago

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Incredibly Random stuff I'm not particularly inclined to, things that make me cringe (personally):


• Potholes and Ice
• Spiteful gossip
• Cake
• Big, heartless corporations
• Fake, selfish people
• The color baby pink
• Chicago Parking tickets
• Velcro
Beyonce, Miley Cirus & Lindsey Lohan
The Dentist
• Vera Bradley things
• Getting up while its still dark outside
• Rum
• Arbys
• Ridiculously overpriced, non quality things
• Getting the oil in my car changed (well, I like when its done)
• Lace curtains
• Greed & Money & what it does to people...
• Jello
• Clowns
• Mean-obnoxious drinkers
• Fluorescent lighting
• Big icky side burn chops on guys
• Fanny packs (does anyone still wear these?)
• Snooty sales clerks
• Pop
• Constant complainers-negative people
• Bad fonts
• The video game "Call of Duty"
Thomas Kinkade
• Game shows

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*(Ohh... and special thanks to miss Georgia for finally showing me how to actually make links and color work in this blogging world. )

oooooh little goodies for 09-


So today I sampled most of Andrew Bird's new (and highly anticipated cd) "Noble Beast". It is due to come out in exactly 15 days and I cannot wait, ooooh cannot wait, cannot wait. Its so yummy and good. His previous stuff makes my heart happy. Takes me to a different and richer place. What lovely tunes to welcome in 2009-
I know exactly where I will be on Tues- Jan 20th. Happily purchasing and reveling in this new disk from such a talented (and originally local artist)

Sample some lush tunes here- Love this guy-

http://www.andrewbird.net/news.htm

oops... (sp)

ha ha ha...

Oh man, I just realized that I was in such a hurry to blog in my previous Christmas post that I didn't really check too much spelling.

Sorry. Its kinda funny. So, if you actually made it through reading it all, you will definitly laugh.

Cheers again

Happy New...

New year! New post! (finally...)

Ok ok, so I realize that it has been quite a while since I blogged, and that's bad, not good, no no no. One of my new years resolutions is to try to blog more, be more active with it. Make myself sit down and go at it. This past Christmas holiday was so so so busy!!!! I am finally now getting the sweet sweet time to sit down and write. This weekend there is finally nothing huge going on, and I am savoring it.
What an awesome time off it was though! I was off for about ten days from work, which is one of the longest string of vacation time I've had in about 2 years. NICE. then,am off this weekend. Lovely.

So anyway! I have posted some pics from the past Christmas holiday. As I was organizing them earlier I realized that I took a total of 150 pictures, whew. Wish I could share them, all but this little bundle will do. (I know, sorry, this one has a lot too). As this season has come and gone, and there has been time to think, laugh, reflect, play, and talk. I realized a lot about life, patience, and plans. Realized that its so easy to get wrapped up in the speed and stress of things, and in "our little worries". There are so many little distractions in this life that we don't even realize are chipping at out hearts, dumb things... like money, stress, the economy, work, draining words, time, etc. Its easy to get wrapped up. But, it takes more- more in depth patience, clarity, quiet and love for life to actually see past all that. To see the richness, fullness, and beauty that has enfolded us. Much of this was shown to me personally. It was wonderful. That was my biggest present I think, being given those pair of glasses to actually see what this breath of life is all about. It was refreshing. So, as I say this... I welcome in 2009 with all its complex moments, its joys, its pains, its roads. Looking forward to the details and what will come.


We had about three Christmas celebrations. Our regular Christmas Eve that just the two of us have always celebrated. Its been a tradition for as long as I can remember. Just Justin and I. Its our time to reflect and relax. Laugh and enjoy the day. Kinda like a nice prep before the busy days ahead. We always cook a really fabulous and kinda extravagant little dinner. Cooking is one of those things that we love to do together, its really relaxing and fun. We made a roast with lost of veggies, lots of fresh rosemary, and home-make french cheddar-onion puffs. Yum. Spent time opening up gifts to each other, laughing. Then, finally... (I been wanting to do this forever since living in the city) We went to the absolutely breath-taking midnight Christmas Eve candle-light service at St. Peters on Michigan Avenue. It was beautiful, packed, full of echoes. In fact, this place has a LOT of significance to us. It's where we decided to start dating almost 9 years ago. We were sitting in the courtyard in the summer, drawing and talking, oh my... we were so young. Such a great memory. So... anyway... enough about all that. : )
All, in all... it was a great Christmas eve. really rich and memorable.


Then! Christmas-time with the in-laws. The Reynolds are such a load of fun. They bring a ton of joy to the table. We can laugh and tell stories for hours. They always cook something experimental, and yes... extravagant (hmmm, wonder where Justin gets it from?) My brother was there, which was really nice. We watched lots of Christmas-style movies like "Love Actually" & "Its a Wonderful Life". Then, later... most of us all got together and my brother in-law Jon, played the guitar. (Justin played the Ukulele, ha!) And Jimmy played the trumpet. Jon tried to teach me some guitar, ha! Anyone who knows me... knows I love music, but uh, am not talented in that area at all. So, um... Carrie, Christina and I sang (or tried to) It was fun.


And Then..! Weekend away and Christmas time with my family. Who moved to Indiana over four years ago. We drove there early, and ugh... hit a pot-hole on the way. Those things are seriously evil. Needed a new tire. Oh, well that's life. When we finally got there though... OH man!!!! So much fun. So rich. We have not been there in a year-and a half. We have all seen each other here and there, but this was the first time in (seriously?) 6 years when we have ALL been together as a family (with the spouses, boyfriends, etc.) for a holiday. It was wonderful. We could not get enough of each other. So much has changed too. In the way of physical and objective attributes and our hearts in the sense of forgiveness. (yup, that would be a long story).
My siblings are growing so much. Its so cool. Being the oldest of 5. There are a lot of stories, and so many different colors and personalities among us all. My parents housed a bunch of us for those days... And man, do not know how she fed so many of us for so long. Ever seen the movie "Dan in Real Life"? It was kinda like that. Lots of cooking and something going on at every second. Opening presents, talking, staying up so late. My brother Drew brought his best friend Zuma, Drew is doing so well. Graduated from Malcom X in the summer, and is a certified Paramedic. He has worked incredibly hard for. Saw my fantastic Sis's apartment for the first time. She moved out in the fall. Its SO cute! Has lots of style, a wonderful spirit, and makes me realize how much she is growing up and changing. He boyfriend Justin compliments her in every way. He's so funny and intelligent, we really like him, and feel like we can call him a good friend as well. She is thriving in college to be a social worker, getting all A's. About to do an internship with a local families with Aids clinic. Jordan is going to be going on to Indiana State in two years- he will be a senior next year. He is basically going on full scholarship. So proud of the guy. He's so smart. He's really good at playing the guitar (is REALLy ha, into John Mayer) smiles. Natalie-the youngest, is (tear) a teenager. WOw! Where did the time go??? Um, she was born when I was a teenager... that's oddly weird. Time flies. She is without a doubt... richly charged with creativity. Loves reading. Has her pet rabbit named Frazzle. She is a talented little artist, was blown away by her sketchbooks full of amazing drawings. She says we wants to be a graphic novelist one day, or illustrator. Would not be surprised if this happens one day.

Ok ok ok. I know. It was long. I'd done. Sorry. Long post. It's just been a while. And these past couple of weeks have been richly full of memory and stories.

Thanks for reading (if ya made it through this far ;)

Cheers! Promise to write sooner.































Sing it loud-

Sing it loud-
Whatever you say, say it with passion...

If Ya write, It makes my heart happy

If Ya write, It makes my heart happy
WRITE RIGHT

fame is a vapor, popularity an accident, riches take wings. only one thing endures and that is character. –H. Greeley

What lies behind us. and what lies before us are small matters... compared to what lies within us. -Ralph Waldo Emerson

whatever you are, be a good one. –A Lincoln

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