Finals Week Photo Shoot

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roomie photo shoot

Productivity at its finest: late night finals week photo-shoot with the roommates.

From left to right: our very best disinterested hipster look (or just plan angry for some of us), the happy family pose, giggling with the gals.

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Look on the Bright Side

Look on the bright sideWith final projects, papers, and exams nearly consuming my life this week, I’ve been reminding myself to look on the bright side and enjoy the little moments of happiness that have made my pre-finals week so much less dismal! Here are the highlights.

1. I actually have a HUGE reason to be happy this week- I finally found out that I may be teaching early childhood education in Baltimore next year, if I choose to accept my offer from TFA! It feels so satisfying to know that I could potentially have a job next year doing something I love and something meaningful! To be honest, I am a little scared of moving all the way across the country to a city I’ve never been to, where I don’t know a single person, but I am always up for an adventure. This video expresses my feelings:  http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E3xICOc13wk

2. It has been absolutely beautiful weather in LA this past week!  It was such a thrill to pull out my warm weather wardrobe! I’m so over jeans and sweaters. Bring on the springtime dresses and shorts.

3. Celebrating successes all around with friends. Summer jobs, job interviews, finishing finals, our futures: there was much to be celebrated this week with whiskey sours and mojitos! Cheers y’all!

3. Wine and silly cosmo quizzes with the roommates: Whats you’re flirtation personality? What type of sexy are you? Are you enough of a bad girl? Important stuff.

4. Thursdays I don’t have any class or meetings, so I got to enjoy a leisurely morning; I woke up without an alarm clock and went down into Westwood with Kim on an absolutely beautiful day. We got iced coffee, picked up some fresh strawberries from the Farmer’s Market, and found a spot on campus in the shade to eat our strawberries together.  Strawberries, sunshine and friend dates make me so happy!

5. Our shower was finally fixed, OH HAPPY DAY! We have been struggling with low water pressure for MONTHS. It was literally a trickle of water. After hassling our landlord forever, our shower water pressure was finally restored to it’s former glory. This has seriously improved my life this past week.

6. I don’t know what it is about this past week but my Game of Thrones obsession has been thrown into full gear. I must be able to sense the approach of the long awaited 03/31/13- the premiere of the third season of the HBO series. In addition to wasting away my time watching the “History and Lore” extras on youtube, I recently discovered the sneak peek chapter of the 6th book of the The Winds of Winter, posted online. George RR Martin better finish that sucker soon, I can’t wait any longer!

Do yourself a favor and waste a few minutes on some shameless nerdery:

History and Lore: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WemjYwYCAy0&playnext=1&list=PL130A01AA168160A0&feature=results_main

The Winds of Winter Teaser: http://georgerrmartin.com/if-sample.html

That’s all for now! Have a wonderful weekend!

Weekend at Home

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1.) I spent most of my Friday stressed out in an important interview.  My day was made better only by my beautiful new Vince Camuto blazer, which I bought specially for the occasion. There’s nothing better than looking sharp and feeling sharp in an interview! People who say fashion is foolish have never felt the power of a well put-together outfit.

2.) I got to celebrate finishing this crazy interview process with a delicious lunch with my brother at Craft and Commerce. Get the fried pickles. Trust me. Even if you hate pickles (I do), you’ll love ’em. And don’t act like you’re too cool to enjoy a shamelessly fried menu item.

3.) Decompressing after a long week, I spent my Friday night at home with the family enjoying our signature Trader Joes pizza/arugula salad creation (TJ’s 4 cheese thin crust pizza, topped with arugula and tomatoes mixed in a quick balsamic vinagrette, sprinkled with some parmesan and a little bacon- so freaking good) and Perks of Being a Wallflower.perks pizza

4.) Helped my Mama put her finishing touches on our newly updated laundry room! Ain’t it purdy? My contribution was our new hand painted striped key rack. See my prior DIY for my “Hola, Guapa” sign for how to make one of your own, just at some hooks to the bottom and you’ve got yourself a key rack!
laundry room

5.) Saturday afternoon we all went on a run around Miramar lake. It was a gorgeous day to be outside. Watched the sunset just as we were finishing our run!

6.) After burning some calories on our run, we rewarded ourselves with a yummy dinner at one of our favorite Mexican restaurants in San Diego, Hernandez Hideway. This place is off the beaten path, and a little sketchy looking but that’s part of its charm. The food is delicious and the margaritas are strong.

7.) DVR’d UCLA basketaball vs. Arizona. Great game and a Bruin victory at home, what more could ya ask for?

8.) Running errands= free samples at Costco, new belt from Target, and singing along to this song and acting like a wierdo with my Mom in the car. Fun.

9.) Just about to finish out the weekend with the much anticipated History Channel premiere of Vikings. I’ll let ya know if it’s worth watching!

Video

GREATEST STUDY PLAYLIST OF ALL TIME

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Many moons ago, a young Katie was desperately trying to keep afloat in her AP Biology class as a Junior in High School. She liked to study in her older brothers room; he was away at college and she liked the extra space to spread out and study in his room. One fateful afternoon, she decided she needed some tunes to fuel her study session, so she turned on the stereo, and listened to the first CD that came on. After months of being ignored in her older brother’s stereo system, the Roxy Music Greatest Hits Album began with the opening guitar riffs of “Virginia Plain.” And so began the most productive study session in all of AP Bio history. Twenty tracks later, Katie was ready for her exam, and mystified by the power of Roxy Music.

It became her weekly tradition, studying Bio while listening to Roxy Music. At first she didn’t particularly even enjoy the songs, but soon she was a full fledged Roxy Music fan girl; Bryan Ferry’s kooky crooning had gotten the better of her. She couldn’t get enough, her ringtone was the beginning of “Pyjamarama” (recorded herself, of course, because apparently Roxy Music isn’t getting a whole lot of ringtone downloads) and every important study session had to be set to Roxy Music’s Greatest Hits almost to the point of superstition. From that fateful afternoon Roxy Music would always have a place in her ipod and her heart.

In summary, listen to this playlist and experience the true wonder of Roxy Music’s Greatest Hits. It will fuel even the most stressful of study sessions and hopefully begin a lifelong love of Bryan Ferry, as it did me. This is my gift to you, use it wisely.

Just some thoughts

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1) Do you ever have a feeling that you are exactly where you are supposed to be, doing exactly what you are supposed to be doing? It can be something really small and insignificant- like dancing like a wierdo for three hours with one of your best friends- but it feels completely and utterly life affirming. It feels like you are watching a movie about your life and we come to a moment of realization, an epiphany- a scene where the audio drops out and some epic, emotion-laden song comes on, and the audience just feels what the character is thinking. Except the audience is me and I have no idea what I’m thinking, it just feels right. You know what I mean? No, okay, maybe that’s just me.

2) This song makes me feel so nostalgic. Flashback to 8 year old Katie listening to this album in the car with the fam, my only source of angst is the fact that my older brother got to wear the “FF” tattoo that came with the CD instead of me. Take me back. foo fighters

3) College has completely stunted my creativity. I have no avenue and little time for doing weird/pointless creative things anymore. I used to love just making stuff, it could be anything really- a life size wooden mannequin of myself for a tech theater project my senior year in high school (with literally no purpose other than looking really creepy) life sizeor making really nerdy t-shirts in my graphic communications class or baking cupcakes that looked like tennis balls for my teammates. Do I have time for any of that now? No way. And that makes me so sad. When I go home on breaks from school, I always lock myself away in our craft room and spend hours just creating. A few weeks ago I spent the entire night just messing around with water colors and went to bed that night feeling so weirdly fulfilled. What I made was downright hideous (hence no picture) but that doesn’t matter to me when I’m in one of my creative flows. I’m determined to create a life for myself where I can express myself creatively!

4) Deja Vu. WHAT IS THIS AND WHY IS IT ALWAYS HAPPENING TO ME? Today I had the most intense episode of Deja Vu, I was writing a paper on my laptop at a little cafe, drinking an iced latte and a short (rather hairy) 30 something man asked me to share my table, he sat down opened up his mac book and left 30 minutes later and that was that. But I just sat there for five to ten minutes trying figure out if this had actually happened before or if it was a dream, a prophecy, a vision that I share this table with this short hairy man. I cannot handle any more episodes like this.

5) Yes. Jacques Cousteau. 6) “The taste of the usual was like cinders in his mouth, and there were moments when he felt as if he were being buried alive under his future.” Edith Wharton took the words right out of my mouth. Here’s to mixing it up and not getting caught up in the usual this week…

Be mine.

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Valentine’s Day is right around the corner and I’ve been feeling the pink, red, and hearts all over! I am currently accepting applications and am open to all individuals interested in “being mine” this Valentine’s Day. But with a Valentine or not I will be celebrating this February 14th for all the other kinds of love that Hallmark doesn’t seem to recognize: platonic love, familial love, and self-love. Here’s what I’ve had my eye on to treat myself to a little self love this Valentine’s Day.

be mine

1. Jewel tone pin for your hair or clothing from ban.do.

2. Fuschia loafers from Gap.

3.  Classic Conversation Hearts are always a winner in my book. I legitimately love eating conversation hearts, not just for the novelty, but actually. They taste like Necco Wafers, and in case you didn’t know, I love Necco Wafers.

4. Festive purple and pink Knee high socks from Target. I always feel a little more special when I am wearing fun socks with my boots. Nobody can see them, but its my fun little secret that I’ve got some crazy pattern going on underneath my shoes.

5. Sparkly bobbies from ban.do would perk up even the worst of hair days!

6. Jane Eyre long sleeve from Out of Print Clothing. One of my favorite tragic love stories. Perfect for a subtle Valentine themed outfit for February 14!

7. This two tone leather clutch from Gap would be great to carry all my essentials without lugging around a huge tote.

8. Mugs from target make you feel all warm and cozy inside with a cup of coffee.

9. L’Oreal Color Riche Nail Polish in Crazy for Chic. Nothing like a fresh bottle of nail polish in your favorite pink to brighten your Valentine’s Day.

10. A good book is the best gift. I’m determined to finish the Lord of the Rings books as soon as possible. I got hooked during Winter Break and now all I want to do is snuggle up and read them. To hell with fancy dinners and hot dates, Middle Earth is calling my name this Valentine’s Day.

Hand Painted Journal

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floral journal

I love having a few journals lying around to jot down notes, to do lists, bits of inspiration, quotes to remember, and the like. I have a mini journal in my purse/backpack every where I go, and a larger one on my nightstand in my apartment. My last journal was all filled up, so I decided to get crafty and hand paint some cheap solid colored journals I picked up at Target (they come in a three pack). It’s really simple, just pick a design you want to add to your journal- I did a floral motif on one and a locust on another. I find it easier to try and replicate an image than create something entirely new, for those of you who are not master artists. I was inspired by a floral calendar and one of my favorite statement necklaces in my jewelry box. All you need is some acrylic paint and some good (thin!) brushes and you can take a boring old notebook and make it look like an expensive journal that you could buy at Papyrus for an arm and a leg.

I think this would be a great handmade Valentine’s Day gift for your friend, sister, or mom. Write one of your favorite quotes on the inside cover! One of my favorites is from St. Therese of Lisieux- “You ask me a method of attaining perfection. I know of love, and only love. Love can do all things” Perfect for a sweet little Valentine’s Day message to a loved one and a great daily reminder to live your life with love!