Tuesday, June 3, 2014

First Official Day of Summer!

As summer begins, so does the joy of summer reading. Without the stacks of essays that typically commandeer my time, I can focus on reading for pleasure, reading in preparation, and reading to dream. Reading for pleasure translates into me finally reading those books that I have purchased throughout the year with the intention of reading. Reading in preparation includes reading/re-reading works that I teach during the school year and developing new approaches in hopes that my students will gain a deeper understanding of the novel (fingers crossed). And reading to dream usually means I'm reading about other people's grand adventures dreaming of the day I'll get to take a life-altering, soul-discovering adventure of my own.

So what titles are included on my summer reading list you may ask... well, I'm a sharer. So get those pens to the ready, here we go...

1. Pale Horse, Pale Rider by Katherine Anne Porter
2. Call Me Zelda by Erika Robuck
3. Never Let Me Go by Kazuo Shiguro
4. The Scent of Sake by Joyce Lebra

1. On Writing: A Memoir of the Craft by Stephen King
2. Into The Wild by Jon Krakauer
3. The Stranger by Albert Camus
4. Cry, the Beloved Country by Alan Paton

1. Holy Cow: An Indian Adventure by Sarah Macdonald
2. Tales of a Female Nomad: Living at Large in the World by Rita Golden Gelman
3. In Patagonia by Bruce Chatwin
4. Long Way Round by Ewan McGregor and Charley Boorman

I always add and subtract titles as the summer goes on, so this list is subject to change. But, this is the stack on my desk right now.

Let's get lost!

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Travel Art Journal

The school year has end (praise the heavens), and this year I am leaving for the British Virgin Islands in 2 days. This is a wonderful vacation that I married into. To sum it up, I'm island hopping on a sailboat for 10 days. I know, right?!?

This leaves me with the considerable task of packing for 10 days in two carry-on. I searched the web, Pinterest, Read It, etc. for hints or lists on what to pack for a vacation like this. Since I am not sailing the boat (I leave that to more experienced members of the crew), I am not responsible for the essential boat equipment; I am responsible for getting the drinks. So essentially, I just need to be comfortable and pack lots of sunscreen. But this will be my second time going, I feel I have a better idea on what to pack and what to leave behind.

One essential I've been working on in preparation for my trip is my art journal. I decided to create one specific for this trip and I even tried a new DIY journal style. I used a 9x12 inch mailer envelope and followed the instructions here. I have also packed a little pouch with the essential journaling tools (see below). To create this little book, I used an assortment of papers: watercolor, vintage book pages, brown craft paper, paint chips, and Smash Book photo pages from Micheal's. To create my backgrounds, I use acrylic craft paint, spray inks, stamps, and Sharpies.

Here is a look at the journal before I begin recording my fabulous adventure...so excited!

Monday, January 28, 2013

Everyday Joy

I use Instagram...a lot. It's like Facebook without the garbage posts I don't care about. I started a small project on January 1st called Everyday Joy. Everyday, I try to find something to find joy in. It started out great and I did a wonderful job of keeping up... then I got sick and did a horrible job. So here I am telling you that I am starting it again.

Join me in finding everyday joy. Just add #everydayjoy to your photos. If you would like to add text to your photos like I did, you can download the Overgram app.

Sunday, January 27, 2013

A New Year...a month late.

It's a new year, and I am a month late in my resolution to post more and keep up with my blog. With a reasonable excuse/excuses. First, I moved over Christmas break. Second, I was slammed by an upper respiratory infection which evolved into a strange fluid-in-the-ears week long drunken state (not cool). This kept me from reading, skating, and all around being myself, because I was unable to visually focus. It was awful.

But I am happy to report that I am on the mend and slowly becoming myself again. Woohoo!

One of the hardest things was being away from derby so long. Skating is an addition, and I am thrilled to get back to the track this week.

I thought that even though I am a month behind in publicizing my New Year's resolutions, I'd share the three things I hope to work on this year.

1. Getting Back to my Art Journals

Prior to landing a teaching job, I was pretty regular with creating art journals. I love the combination of paint and paper scraps paired with written personal expressions and doodles. I will set aside at least 2 hours a weak to work in my art journals and get back to something I love.

2. Cooking

One of the issues with my old house was a crappy kitchen. Our new kitchen is spacious and has usable counter space. With this great addition, I plan to cook more. Thank goodness for Pinterest... I will never need to buy another cookbook again!

3. Getting in Shape

I'm a pretty thin person. This goal is not to lose weight, but to become healthier and be more active. I have no goal weight or calories to count, just a conscious effort to be healthier. Fresh eating and physical activity.

Wish me luck...I'll wish you luck too!

Saturday, November 10, 2012

Long time, no post

So I have consistently neglected this blog. It's a horrible habit, but sometimes life and all its responsibilities become all consuming.

With the holidays upon us, I thought I would mention a few things I will be crafting up for gifts... some of us need a head start and all you over-achievers have already begun.

Not to plug myself or anything, but I always have an inventory of crocheted infinity scarves ready for those hard to shop folks or the last minute "crap you invited me to your Christmas Party and now I feel obligated to give you a gift" friends.

Infinity Scarves by Me!

Infinity scarf patterns:
Double crochet infinity
Single crochet infinity (seen above)

Cookie Tin Magnet Board from Crate Paper Blog

I did this with small vintage trays and hung them next to my computer at home...I like the bigger scale.

Tutorial found here

Ear Warmers by delia creates

Tutorial found here


Circle Scarf by Cotton and Curls

If you don't have time to crochet for a few hours, this appears to be a nice alternative. I'll tell you in a couple days if I was right.

Tutorial found here

Customized Coffee Mugs by A Beautiful Mess

I purchased about 8 small white ceramic dishes for a dollar last time I went to Pier 1 thinking, "I can do something brilliant with these!" And now I will.
Tutorial found here
So this is what I will be up to for the next couple of weekends, slaving away with crochet hooks and sharpies to the hum of a sewing machine. Happy Crafting!

Saturday, July 14, 2012

3 Week Vacation Picture Recap

I just got back from a 3 week vacation in Indiana and Wisconsin. I had a wonderful time relaxing with family and visiting some of my favorite places. Here is a brief photo montage of my time.

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Summer Reading 2012

For those of you who know me...I'm a big reader, colossal reader. But I noticed that during the school year, my reading was limited to class books and teaching guides. Buh. So now that we have entered into summer break, I can catch up on my fun reading...kinda.

I will be teaching AP American Literature next year. Yeah! This also translates into me reading books I haven't read since high school or books I've never read in order for me to teach them. Eek!

Below is a  list of the reading I must complete this summer and the reading I want to complete. If you would like to join in on the learning...let me know! I love chatting about books!

Summer Musts
1. The Scarlet Letter (re-read)
2. The Adventures of Huckleberry Finn
3. East of Eden
4. The Sun Also Rises (re-read)

Summer Wants
1.  Slaughterhouse 5
2. We the Living 
3. The Witching Hour
4. Ready Player One
5. Tropic of Cancer
6. Let Me In

I'm sure more will be added to this list as I hit the thrift stores and pick up killer finds.