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Weekly Journal: Hurricane, Tired Brain and a Tiny Camera

I’ve been meaning to start these posts back up again. Maybe they will help me keep up with the blog like I used to, back when I always had posts scheduled and was always up to date with my reading list. Back when words flowed more freely out of my brain.

It’s harder to do that nowadays because I am always so tired when I get home from work. It’s not a physically exhausting job, but it is very collaborative and involves working very closely with my coworkers all day. It’s great, but as somebody who is a bit on the anti-social side, I have a bad case of tired brain when I finally get home! It’s way different than back when I started this blog, when I was cooped up in a lab all by myself all day with hardly anything to do.

My hope is to make better use of my time so I can keep up with all the random little things I want to do such as edit pictures, write blog posts, figure out how to develop film, work on my temperature blanket, learn french, teach the cats not to shred the new couch.. ect. 

Anyway, here are a few things that happened this week!

The Hurricane came by early last week, and despite all the fuss that was made around here, it was completely underwhelming. Some mild drizzle was all that we got. But that’s definitely better than being completely flooded or out of power!

This tiny camera is the newest member of my collection. It actually works and came up a tiny roll of film! Getting it developed should be interesting..

These posts are also good for reminding me to take more random pictures throughout the week.

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I have returned!

I have a new camera, new laptop, new photo editor, and I what I hope is new inspiration.

There are quite a few posts that have been hanging out in my drafts, waiting around for me to figure out what to say about them so those should be appearing soon.

Stay tuned!

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Wedding Anniversary

Two years ago, Steven and I got married! I thought I would share some more photos from our wedding.  

You can see more on my post from last year, where I wrote all the details about the day.

We got married in my Mom’s lovely Victorian house, and made all of the decorations.

We had a small ceremony in the morning. Steven’s brother got ordained for the event and married us.

After the ceremony it was time for some breakfast, and to rest up and get ready for the huge party in the evening. We invited everyone we knew!

And the best part was… All the food!

All the cheese you can imagine

Talking to my mom and my aunt afterward

It was fun but it all went by in a blur. I wish I could go back and enjoy it as a guest. 
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The Dark Days Are Over

The dark clouds that seemed to swallow me up last fall have finally disappeared.

I quit the job that was making me unhappy and after a month of being jobless, I am finally back at my old job. Things have turned around here and have gotten a lot better than it was when I left.

 It’s funny how much a job can affect your life. 

 Finally I am back where I belong; the place I have been a part of since the very beginning. Being part of this start up company is a rough ride, but it’s what I am used to. I finally feel like my life is back together. This whole past year I felt, out of control..

 I regret leaving, but maybe I had to leave to realize that I belonged here.

Now I can get back to being my old self.
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My Birthday

I turned twenty four on the eighth, and to celebrate, Steven, my mom my sister and I went to a little town called Mount Airy to check out the little shops and have lunch. 

We started the day with breakfast at my mom’s house which included scrambled eggs, fruit and muffins. And I got this cute little pinata! I will set him up on a cute shelf when I have a craft area one day.

Mount Airy is a small little town that the Andy Griffith show was based off of. I just love all the old style buildings.

We checked out plenty of antique stores, and acted awkward in the toy store.

Snappy lunch is a popular spot that serves a famous porkchop sandwich, but we ate at a different diner this time, since I’m not a porkchop eater.  I got a delicious pimento cheese sandwich!

Towards the end of our shopping trip, we stumbled onto this glorious place..

There were so many delicious looking treats, it was hard to choose what to get! I ended up choosing the super chocolate moonshine brownie, it was so yummy but I could only take about three bites before it felt like my blood had turned into sugary syrup. 

All in all it was a fun birthday. I’ve reached the point where I’ve started to forget how old I am! Am I 22? 23? 24? They’ve all blurred together.  I guess because my most exciting birthdays are behind me now, there’s none left that I really can’t wait to turn. I’m certainly not dreading getting older, but I sure don’t have a countdown going like I did for my 18th or 21st.
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Self Journal: Optimism

(I had a sudden burst of creativity yesterday. I had words in my head that I had to write down that second. I used my phone notepad. Then I decided to post it here… Not sure of this will become a theme or not, but I always liked the idea of a blog being more of a journal. Anyway..)

Monday, February 2nd 2015

It didn’t get dark until almost six today. I felt a sudden rush of optimism as I looked out the kitchen window, seeing light instead of the usual darkness that greets me when I get home from work. 

The smell of roasted cauliflower and lemon pepper tilapia filled the air, some seeds I had ordered last week sat on the counter top next to me, and for just a second it felt like summer. 

 I finally felt the optimism I had been waiting for all weekend that never came. I thought for sure that I would have to wait another week before there was any chance at feeling optimistic again. Mondays are never good days and the soreness in my arms and back didn’t go away over the weekend like I had hoped. But somehow they didn’t scream in protest every time I moved today, maybe I am finally on the mend. Today was a better Monday than I had anticipated. 

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My Goals for 2015

Well, it’s 2015. I feel like every year the new number gets a little more shocking to see. Where did the time go?  I still have the mindset that 2007 was like, two years ago. Anyway, so I made a few goals last year, let’s see how I did!
Finally be done with school
 Check!  I think I’ve talked about school enough so I’ll leave it at that.

Plant a vegetable garden and expand on my other gardens
I definitely completed this goal, I had so much fun in the garden last year, and we even bought a tree!

Get my Etsy shop up and running and keep it up
 I pretty much completed this, I did take a few breaks every now and then, but for the most part I kept it going pretty well.

Fix up the house some more
 We finished our dining room this year, but since my hours got cut back in April we couldn’t afford to get our pipes changed around for a washer and dryer.  🙁

Eat healthier
We definitely ate way healthier this year than ever before, thanks to the vegetable garden and our nifty vegetable spiralizer!

Ride bikes more
 Fail. We robe bikes maybe once or twice this whole year. We did start jogging though!  Which lasted for about a month..

Get less stressed about school and work
That was kind of hard the first part of the year. I was forced to go on some really terrible and pointless business trips at my old job and the last one ended up with my boss convincing himself that we caught anthrax at the CDC. Which turned onto a whole ordeal that involved him trying to convince me take really strong antibiotics and help him sue the place. I never want to go anywhere near Atlanta ever again, or hear anything about the CDC ever again.  But after all that was over, I adopted a new carefree attitude and  haven’t gotten stressed about much since. Of course it helps that I have a normal job now!

So overall I think I did pretty well on my goals for the year. It’s nice to sit down and think about what things I’d like to complete in the next year. here’s what I came up with:

Exercise at least five times a week
I started last year out doing this, but never kept it up. I am such a weakling that I feel like I have absolutely no muscle at all. Now that I sit at a desk all day my upper back has been insanely sore and I’d like that to go away!  I think exercising and strengthening my muscles will help.

Read more  
I have so many books on my list to read, some of which I have been attempting to read for the past three years!  But so much time passes in between reading that I always have to start over.

Put up a privacy fence in the back yard and/or get a new shed
 We definitely want to replace the ivy fence with a regular fence, (That ivy is out of control!!) and put up a fence on the other side of the yard, which I am ecstatic about because I don’t like being outside while the neighbors are out there, (They might do something crazy, like talk to me!)  Also if we have enough money we would like to get a new tool shed and put it at the end of the driveway instead of in the middle of the yard like our rusty one is now.

Finally get a washer and dryer hookup 
Hopefully we can do it this year, I can’t imagine how luxurious it must be to not leave the house to do laundry.

Have Etsy shop and blog events
I’d like to start doing some fun stuff with my Etsy shop, like giveaways and monthly sales. Also finally get around to photographing the hoard of stuff I have waiting to go in my shop.

Get my film developed and take more film photos
 I have about five rolls of film from various cameras sitting around that I really need to get developed, and see if these cameras actually work. Haha.

What are your goals for the new year?

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One Year of Blogging

One year ago today I wrote my first blog post.  I’m not exactly sure what prompted me to start a blog, but it sort of went along with starting my Etsy shop which also turned one yesterday. 

So I guess it all started with some bonsai stamps Steven found on a package at work. He knew I liked stamps and bonsais so he brought them home to me and I had them for months but couldn’t decide what to do with them. Then one day last November I remembered how much I had always wanted to put stuff into resin. I had bought some resin years earlier and did a few things with it, but then got busy with school and hadn’t thought about it very much since then. I realized the perfect idea would be to put the little bonsai stamps into resin!  But then what?? That’s when I had the idea to turn them into necklaces and give them as Christmas gifts to my mom and sister. I was so excited that I just went for it and didn’t do a whole lot of research or practice which resulted in me ruining my cute little stamps. 🙁  But that led me to ebay where I found more of the same little bonsai stamps plus loads of different stamps from all around the world. Then, finally I got the idea to start making resin stamp necklaces and magnets to sell on Etsy. I have sold 12 things from my shop so far!  It’s so neat to think about my necklaces or magnets, hanging out in somebodies home, far away.

 Back in my days on Flickr I followed a few bloggers and it always seemed like it would be fun to have one, but once again, school always zapped my time. Now that I was nearly rid of school I guess it seemed like a good time to give it a try! I figured that I would just be writing to no one; there are so many blogs out there that I couldn’t imagine anyone ever finding mine. I was never even sure what I wanted to write about, I just started sharing whatever I thought was interesting, or what I was up to lately, and to my surprise I got a few followers in my first month.  Now I am up to 38 followers and nearly 10,000 views after one year! I can hardly believe it!  I have met so many interesting people through blogging over this past year, I love learning how life is like for people in different states and countries. This has been an awesome first year and I can’t wait to see what this next year holds!

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Christmas Traditions

Christmas is my favorite time of year, I love everything about it. The bright lights, cheery music, yummy baked goods, fun traditions. Everything!

My mom always has the most glorious Christmas trees, it is hard to look at anything else but the tree when you’re n the room.

My Christmas tree hasn’t reached the glorious stage yet.. Maybe one day!

Every year we like to drive up to a little town called Mount Airy and do some Christmas shopping. I love all the decorated storefronts! 

We would put a train around my Mom’s tree and watch the cats go crazy, stalking it and batting at it. Sometimes we’d hide a treat inside the train cars and the cats would chase it around!

Baking is a big part of the Christmas season and we have some old favorites we like to bake every year, pistachio chocolate chip cookies, ginger cookies and tiny pecan pies.

Every now and then we bake sugar cookies, they’re a lot of work, but it’s fun to decorate each one uniquely!

Three Christmases ago I got my camera! I was so surprised when I saw it sitting there under the tree, my eyes got wide and I just stared at box for a while.. Then I posed for this picture. (Thanks Mom!)

It’s so much fun to unpack the ornaments every year and see all our favorites.

This little Santa guy is my favorite!

The nutcrackers stand guard over my mom’s Christmas candy.

Last year my mom threw a super fun Christmas party, with hot cocoa and cookies. I can’t wait to do it again this year!

I love going anywhere at night during Christmas time, and seeing all the houses brightly lit in colorful lights!

And of course, drinking a mug of hot cocoa in front of the fireplace and a sparkly tree on a chilly winter’s night is one of favorite things!

What are some of your favorite Christmas traditions?

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Christmas Tag

Jess over at Writing in Red Lipstick did a Christmas tag and since I’m a major Christmas fan, I just had to do it too! 

1. What is your favorite Christmas Movie?
I have quite a few, my top favorites being Christmas Vacation, Elf, A Christmas Story, the Santa Claus and Home Alone. I also like A Christmas Carol with Patrick Stewart, I love it when Christmas is a little bit creepy..

2. Do you open your presents on Christmas Eve or Christmas morning?
When I was little we always had a tradition of opening one present on Christmas eve. It was so much fun to decide what present you wanted to open up the most. Now we open presents on Christmas eve at Stevens parents house, and then open more on Christmas morning at my mom’s house, then we all go back to Steven’s parents house for the HUGE CHRISTMAS CELEBRATION.

3. Do you have a favorite Christmas memory?
I have so many, but one that stands out right now is when I was six, I asked Santa for  fish tank for Christmas. I was so excited when I saw it under the tree on Christmas morning!

4. Favorite festive food?
My mom makes a delicious cheeseball that’s definitely one of my top faves!

5. Favorite Christmas gift?
I got a little toy cat when I was three that I named Christmastree Butterscotch and I carried it everywhere. I got my camera for Christmas a few years ago and that’s another top favorite! Haha.

6. Favorite Christmas scent?
Nothing beats the fresh piney scent of a Christmas tree!

7. Do you have any Christmas Eve traditions?
We go to Steven’s parents house to open presents, and then we usually go to my mom’s house and drink eggnog, watch Christmas movies and then drive around to look at Christmas lights.

8. What tops your tree?
I actually can’t find it!  🙁  It was a vintage red and white star. I am using a silver glittery star for now until I find my old one.

9. As a kid what was the one (crazy, wild, extravagant) gift you always asked for but never received?
It’s not extravagant but I really wanted a Polaroid camera and never got one. :'( Although I wonder if that was the Christmas I decided to email  my list to santa and didn’t save a copy of my list on the computer or show my parents (Why would I? As long as it got sent to santa!) 

10. What’s the best part about Christmas for you?
Probably all the fun Christmas traditions and activities we all do together every year!

I tag everyone else!  I’d love to hear what your answers are!