Friday, December 19, 2008

Merry Christmas!!!

holiday card, originally uploaded by prideofazchick.

Well, we are off on our epic adventure to Vegas (GO CATS!) and then Durango. I'll catch up with you all on the flip side of Christmas unless I have some sort of amazing thing to share with you and I find a way to do so!

Have a Merry Christmas, everyone.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Let's color correct the web!

Wow, it has almost been a week. So much for my blog resolutions, eh? In my defense, I've been pretty busy with volunteer work, regular work, and polishing off the holiday shopping.

So, because of all that, I just have a short tidbit to share with you instead of an entire blog entry and that is this: You just can't trust online shopping sites for true-to-life garment color. I prefer to shop online but how do you ever know that what you are getting is the color you want?

For example, this:

can't trust computer screens by Jelitan

These are my exact sweater and bag for today. Would you have ever guessed by these online store shots that they are almost exactly the same deep gold color??? Didn't think so. One looks bright yellow and the other looks pale gold...

And that is all... I'm so useless today! This entire entry was inspired by me searching for the sweater I'm wearing today to see if it came in other colors because I love it. :-)

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Holiday Road Trip

We have always been a simple, stay at home for the holidays family. Most of my family lives in Arizona so even after my parents got divorced, there still wasn't that much traveling for the holidays. The fact that my husband's parents live in Prescott too helped a ton! The longest trek was always just Tucson to Prescott and back during college.

This year, however, between UofA making it into the Las Vegas Bowl (I don't even want to tell you how long it's been since we have made it to a bowl game) and Mike's family's destination Christmas in Durango, we have a pretty significant road trip planned for the holidays.

How far do you travel for Christmas?

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

This ain't no party!

Love it.

Sunprints and embarassing childhood foibles

HERE is a really cool post about using a sunprint kit to make neato holiday decorations. I had such a kit when I was in middle school but I thought it would be a "great" idea to try to use it as photo paper in a handmade pinhole camera (made with a pringles can, soda can, and black paper) and expose and develop it and think that it would come out any other way except totally blank.
Hopefully all the holders of the stockings into which I will be stuffing this are smarter than my 6th grade self and can use it to make beautiful designs.

More amazon awesomeness

I blogged a while ago about amazon's universal wish list which has been great for the holidays. My family members want very specific ideas and having everything in one place ensures that people have ideas and I usually don't need to return things.

There is another feature that I've been using off and on but never really realized that it's a really good idea. That is the gift organizer function.

Check this out. This is my Dad's page. When I buy something for him, I mark that it was a gift for my Dad in the drop down and now I've linked it to his wish list too. So, I just go to the gift organizer and click on "Dad" and a bunch of good gift ideas pop up, either from his wish list or suggestions based on presents I bought in the past. Genius! Go check it out on your amazon page.

(click picture to enlarge)

I don't know if you can tell what my Dad's interests are from seeing this. They are obviously extensive and varied. :-P

Monday, December 8, 2008

Santa Labels

I used these mailing labels on our Christmas cards. I added in our return address in candy cane font from dafont and then used the xyron to affix them. They turned out great! Yay for mostly free Christmas crafts!

Friday, December 5, 2008

Beautiful books - what more could you ask for?

Look how beautiful! I would love to have the pretty copies of any of the above novels. I've read most of them but actually only own Tess of the D'Urbervilles.

And now I'm old, too

I think have officially crossed into the age range where I find it really offensive when people think I am older than I actually am. This problem is compounded by two factors. The first is that I do volunteer work with teenagers. They apparently lump me in with all of the other advisers who are all much older than me. Most of these people were advisers in the program when I was still IN the program as a teenager. But if they make a cultural reference, they feel like they have to explain it to me. I asked if a headline they were running that played on a band's name was topical enough that most people would get it. The kids, of course, said "haha, it's a BAND!" like I didn't know. Of course I knew it was a band. I was going to their concert the next week. I'm NOT OLD. When I told them I had a cell phone in high school, they asked me if it was one of those big brick ones from the 80's. I graduated in '01!

The second factor that compounds my neurosis is the structure of my firm. Associates constantly move upward in rank and responsibility throughout our career so we are hiring new staff members and interns at least twice a year. The problem is that people in my particular rank can be of many different ages so apparently the new staff just assume that I am older than I actually am. I had one staff who went to the same University as me go on and on about "oh, I don't if that professor was teaching way back when you were in school..." (yes he said 'way back' - more than once!) until I finally stopped him to discern the difference in our ages. I was undergrad class of 2005, he graduated in 2006 - I am ONE YEAR OLDER.

And, of course, when I told a different staff the first story about the teenagers she said "oh, did you try to sound hip?" and then laughed. I am hip, goddamnit! And not as in a broken hip.

Anyone else have this problem? I find it quite frustrating. It's right up there with people making assumptions about my interests and personality because of my work clothes (we have a dress code!!), or that the fact that I'm married means I want to have kids right now (no way!!), or that I'm a girl so I couldn't possibly love sci fi (I'm a geek!!), or that I'm boring because I'm an accountant.

Please, share an assumption someone made about you that really pissed you off! We can rant together.

Tuesday, December 2, 2008

So much for not phoning it in...

Ok, so I promised in my 100th post that I would have fewer mini-posts, but sometimes you just need a little post that says "this pillow is adorable."

Buy it here.

Monday, December 1, 2008

A very merry un-birthday to you

I could throw the most fantastic unconventional tea party with these cups from trixiedelicious.

Everyone would be required to wear jeans and slurp with their elbows on the table, of course. I think I would also need to have her heavenly virtues set as well, just to up the irony factor.

In addition, they are recycled vintage teacups that have been hand-painted - the seller refers to it as 'vandalizing vintage.' As if I didn't already love them enough.

More Faux Disposables

I posted recently about faux-disposable items and I just discovered a few more. I love the tongue-in-cheek mocking of our disposable culture. Plus, they make for good gifts!

Eco-Christmas - Start With the Card

Madebygirl has some really beautiful eco-friendly, recycled paper holiday cards this year. If I hadn't already gotten mine months ago I would be all over these. We'll think about next year!

I especially love this one. Please don't cut down a tree this Christmas. Mike and I have a beautiful fake tree that will last us many years and we love it!

Friday, November 28, 2008

Monday, November 24, 2008

No babies were harmed in the writing of this post

Anyone else intrigued yet mostly freaked out by baby hand soap from A+R?

Yes, it's quite creepy.

Friday, November 21, 2008

100th post: business as usual

So, I'm an awful blogger. I know!! 10 days is a long time for me to go without blogging. Here's the problem: this my 100th blog post, which is a very intimidating thing. I have been feeling pressured to come up with something absolutely amazing to post about on this milestone. It was a serious block to my creativity. So, I decided to NOT do an extra special 100th post and just go on with business as usual.


So, that being said, I have a couple of goals for blogging in general:

1) More regularity in posting - this will be accomplished with weekend posts. My google reader statistics show that people read and write blog posts less frequently on the weekends but it is actually the best time for me to write them. It doesn't matter if people don't read them until monday!

2) More writing - Though I love to share little mini posts about items I have discovered, I think my creative writing muscles could be flexed more. I'm going to work on that. Also, I want to put more even of myself into the blog. Working on that too.

3) More commenting on other's blogs - I must appreciate and support my fellow bloggers! They are working so hard and are incredibly creative.

That's all for now. Tell me what you think!

And, just in case you were completely bored by this post, here is an adorable etsy item that I found today.

These custom napkin rings just might be the perfect thing to motivate us to eat at the table with cloth napkins everyday - not just special occasions!! We are horrible users of paper napkins, a problem that goes unnoticed for some reason even though we try to be as green as possible in so many other areas of our lives.

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

A bit of travel

This is a busy traveling month for me (3 out-of-state trainings and a mini vacation) so I thought a travel post was in order.

I was thinking about what to post about. There are tons of travel-savvy sites that have wonderful packing tips like onebag and sites where you can find pretty and practical travel accesories like flight001 (shouldn't have gone there, I just found a few things to add to my Christmas list!)

You can check out those links about but I really want to share my "never travel without" list. A lot of things can be easily replaced on a trip. These things are slightly more difficult.

Never Travel Without...

1) A book - I personally don't really go anywhere without a book. If your flight is delayed, you can usually grab a paperback from a convenience store at the airport but there have been times where I was stuck on the plane for several hours, not taking off. I would have hated to be without a book then.

2) A camera - this one should be self-explanatory. I can't believe that I used to go on trips without a camera. Since one of my goals became to chronicle our life more effectively, I never travel without it.

3) A swimsuit - this doesn't really apply to the business trips I've been going on but it works for basically any other trip. You might need to drop by the hot tub after a long day of wandering around an amusement park, exploring an art museum, or skiiing. Plus, we all know how painful these things are to shop for. Do you really want to try and go find one if an opportunity to swim presents itself?

4) Sneakers - lots of hotels have workout rooms that you might want to take the opportunity to use and they are a great backup when you can barely walk after the unsupportive "cute flats" you wore all day at Disneyland destroy your soul (pun intended).

5) Extras of your "unique items" - for me this is an extra pair of contacts and my glasses as well as any meds and chargers for my blackberry and ipod. These are things you definitely do not want to be without far away from home.

And there you have it, my random travel wisdom. Aren't you so lucky to have it bestowed upon you? ;)

Sunday, November 9, 2008

Eco-friendly items made to look disposable

Is it just me or are these totally great? Whimsy + Thinking Green = Fabulous. 

A ceramic "disposable" noodle bowl from SuckUK

Glass "plastic water bottles" from UO
A ceramic "disposable to go cup" from UO

Ceramic "deli coffee cup" from UO

I'll take one of each. Also, these could be fabulous Christmas gifts. I am determined to get my Christmas shopping done early this year - hence the posts about Christmas before I've even taken down my halloween banner. 

My Christmas Shopping goals for this year are as follows:

1) Buy from independent sellers whenever possible
2) Buy early - no last minutes this year!
3) Eco-friendly gifts are preferable
4) Green wrapping practices are a must!
5) If I can make a gift, I will, though I'm not extremely handy with the crafts

Please share any goals you may have - I love input.  

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Etsy find: onegarnetgirl

I don't wear much jewelry and I don't take the time to accessorize in the morning so I like to have basics that I wear every day - my wedding and e-rings, my watch, a favorite necklace, etc. I have loved the idea of adding stacking rings to this repertoire since I first discovered Paloma Picasso's Sugar Stacks collection from Tiffany (which now come in sterling silver!). These are far a bit out of my price range. 

So, I did what any sensible, aspiring indie shopper would do, I etsy-surfed for stacking rings and I came across these gems (no pun intended) from onegarnetgirl

They are absolutely beautiful! You can buy the rings separately or one of her many sets. I just had to share them! The stones are beautiful and I love the rough-hewn quality of the metalwork. I think they would be a great Christmas or birthday gift, especially if you could work a set around someone's birthstone or do a family stack for a new mom - her birthstone, dad's birthstone and new baby's birthstone. Or, just treat yourself!

Halloween polaroid fun

Halloween flickr collage, originally uploaded by prideofazchick.

1. nice hair, evan, 2. boys, 3. no press, 4. trading costumes, 5. josh ghost hunting, 6. remnants of our childhood, 7. hang on to your hamburgers, 8. dork, 9. waldo and carmen, 10. party mascot, 11. Velma and Shaggy, 12. Hamburgler, 13. the passed out CPA, 14. velma investigating the cave, 15. jeff the "cpa", 16. fry husband

Here are some great polaroids of our friends from our halloween party. The Carmen Sandiego, Waldo, and Velma costumes were the most fun to photograph as they were the most colorful. Man, I love polaroids.


Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Just a reminder!

Please, make sure you..., originally uploaded by mayalu.

Please go out there and make a difference today!

Arizonans, please remember to vote NO on Prop 102!!! Californians, please remember to vote NO on Prop 8!

Monday, November 3, 2008

Halloween Party of Doom - the Decor

Halloween Party Decor, originally uploaded by prideofazchick.

~ Click on the mosaic for links to the individual pictures.

The decor for our party was really fun, though very time-consuming! We had our usual over-the-top outside decor with jack-o-lanterns, spiderwebs, pumpkin-shaped lights, screaming skulls, thunder and lightning machine, fog machine, gravestones, hanging ghost, and haunted mirror.

Final count: 40+ trick-or-treaters, 4 kids cried, 2 wouldn't walk up the front steps, 1 girl ran screaming down the street. Yeah, we're those people. Also, this is all from our decor alone, we don't dress spookily.

Inside, we had many decorations as well. A few I haven't photographed yet, I'll get to it! We had glowing portraits and pumpkins along the stairs. We painted frames with fluorescent paint and spookified portraits of friends and family and printed them and cut out fangs and fake blood. We then backed the portraits with fluorescent paper so they glowed. Pumpkins were also painted with fluorescent paint and set on the stairs. (all Martha Stewart's idea from the halloween issue of MSL)

(I am planning a feature blog post in a bit on the wine labels so I can give full credit to the person who created them!)

Centerpiece was a glittered skull and pumpkin on a black-painted doily on a cake plate.

This was surrounded by "blood" martinis with 1 green "olive" floating candle. These were just made using giant martini glasses from Michaels (left over from our wedding candy buffet) filled with water and food coloring (and dry ice when the boys got silly).

We used dollar store martini glasses and wine goblets and added warning stickers (also martha) and glittery bug stamps to individualize them. We also had a bowl full of tonic water ice cubes (tonic water glows under a blacklight). The only ice cube trays I have are the fancy ones I bought at ikea on a whim and had never used. As a result, our "spooky" ice was in the shapes of triangles, hearts, and puzzle pieces. A tip for those attempting this at home - use flat tonic water. Bubbles only cause problems. I tried to make floating glowy hands with rubber gloves and all the fingers fell off because of the bubbles leaving cavities in the ice!

In the bottom right corner, you see "Velma" in a spooky bat cave. This was just created by using Martha's silhouette kit from Michaels and then adding branches in vases on either side.

More elements of our spooky party to come. I am posting all of this after halloween so I wouldn't give anything away to my guests! I'll hopefully re-post next October so you can steal anything you want!

super mario cupcakes

super mario cupcakes 085_2, originally uploaded by hello naomi.

Look how cute these mario cupcakes are (by hello naomi)! These would be great for a party or wedding.

hmmm.... they kinda remind me of someone's groom's cake... ;)

Anyone else having Halloween withdrawls?

Please share awesome halloween stories about how much fun you had and what you dressed up as. Also, please enjoy this unflattering and badly lit picture of me in my costume. Are you "cool" enough to know who I'm supposed to be?

Hope your Halloween was a blast! I'll have pics of our party decorations up later!

Friday, October 31, 2008

Living vicariously through photographs

simply fall, originally uploaded by mainemomma2007.

As a desert-dweller, lately I've been living vicariously through mainemomma2007's flickr photostream. Talk about some BEAUTIFUL fall foliage. Plus, her photographic technique is truly wonderul. Click on the picture to go check her out!

Pass it on

Copy this sentence into your blog if you’re in a heterosexual marriage, and you don’t want it “protected” by people who think that GLBT marriage hurts it somehow.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

Mod Pumpkin Carving!

Patterns on pumpkins, originally uploaded by Laura VW.

Love this! The Fauxrla Kiely especially.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Get me to the Ranch on time!

So, here’s my little Sunday adventure.

Brad and Jen’s wedding was on Sunday at 4:30. I dropped Mike off at their house to do best man stuff the morning and went back to the hotel. I got my dress steamed, made the “Just Married” sign made for the car (badly), and did a super quick flat iron job on my hair (I bought an emergency $15 flatiron because Mike forgot to grab mine while packing – needless to say, it was not my chi iron). I headed out to the mall after that to meet my friends and have lunch. I had a moment where I considered throwing my dress, boots, and other items in the car just in case I was running late but I thought that would be silly. I would have plenty of time to run back to the hotel and get dressed and put makeup on. **cue ominous music**

So I’m driving away from the mall about 15 minutes later than I would have liked (our waitress was a bit slow) and I get about a block away and I hear a HORRIBLE clanging noise. I pull into a church parking lot and look at the back tire. HUGE FRAKKING BOLT sticking out of it. HUGE. There is much hissing as the tire rapidly deflates.

I call Mel and ask her to come meet me and then I call AAA because 1) I don’t know where the spare tire is or the jack because it’s my husband’s car 2) I have a wedding to go to and I don’t want to arrive completely gross and nasty from changing a tire 3) It’s sort of dangerous to change a tire so I only do it if I absolutely have to and 4) they are fast, reliable and I pay for the AAA anyway so I should use it!

Mike offers to send Chris (another groomsman) for me but there is no way any of the bridal party is going to miss the ceremony because of me! I decide that the best thing to do is send Mel to my hotel room and give her a massive list of everything I need for the wedding including my brush, makeup, flatiron, sign, and clothes.

While she is doing that, I pack up everything that I’m going to need from the car including cameras, cowboy hat, and Mike’s computer because the wedding is out a bumpy dirt road and driving on the donut tire would be bad news - especially because it’s not like we have another tire hidden around somewhere. AAA comes and changes the tire no problem and I’m ready to go. The solution to the problem of how I am getting to the wedding is now for Mel to drive me with all of my stuff. She comes back with everything I need and more. I told her to look for a specific white tank top in my suitcase and, just to make sure I get the right one, she grabbed everything white she could see!!

So I’m laden with stuff and we head out (did I mention it’s about 15 min until ceremony start time at this point and it’s a bit of a drive?) and the only way I was going to be there all put together is to change in the back of Mel’s car (a ford focus). So Mel drives me to the ceremony and I put on my tights and boots and dress in the back seat (my legs were so swollen from running around in the heat so I could only get my boots on with the tights!!!) Also, did I mention I’m pretty prone to car sickness and that I had to pee when we left the restaurant? Awesome.

So Mel and I finally pull in at 4:29 and (thank goodness) there is an issue with the place where the FOB parked that they had to deal with before the ceremony started. I bolted to the groomsman changing room and got myself sort of together before the ceremony (the bladder issue was paramount at this point). Then, as the bridal party was lining up, I cut in front of them to go grab a seat. Of course, I forgot that at a Jewish wedding, bride and groom’s sides are switched so I went to the wrong side at first and looked like an absolute idiot turning around and going for the groom’s side. I finally spy a seat (in a really sunny spot, probably why no one was sitting there) and my phone starts ringing. I say SHIT quite audibly in front of the guests and fumble in my purse for the offending phone. I turn it off and grab my camera as it’s time for the music to start. Whew. Made it. I also managed to sneak back to the groomsman room again to fix my hair and makeup before cocktails but man, it was an adventurous day.

I think it was karmic payback because the bride (who was also the S/O of the best man at my wedding) couldn’t find our ceremony site on our wedding day and ended up hiking along the creek in her heels until she found it. We both had our adventures on each other’s wedding days.

Mazel Tov!

Congrats to Jen and Brad!! What a beautiful wedding. I hope you guys are having a lot of fun in Hawaii!

Thursday, October 23, 2008

More Geekiness: Star Wars USB Drives

From Urban Outfitters, no less.

Are these not just awesome?

Urban Outfitters tends to have um ... interesting jump drives for sale. Some are shaped like sushi or pizza, some are animals that are doing things I might not want my USB drive to do, especially because I bring it to work. I could handle these though. They are just fun and geeky. Apparently, they also have Star Wars plushies. I understand Yoda and Chewy but I don't think I want to cuddle up with Vader or a Storm Trooper. Couldn't they have Han Solo instead? Or R2D2?

For all my geeky readers :)

This is funny even if you don't watch The Office. For those crazies that have not seen this amazing show, the basic premise of this scene is that Dwight (foreground) claims to be 100% productive all day long and does nothing non-work related at work so Jim (background talking) is timing anything he says or does that would not constitute work to prove him wrong.

Let the geekiness commence.

**Also props to Ashley, who also posted this on her blog because it's just so frakking funny**

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

The polyvore halloween costume contest is like crack to me

wwmTVww - Lauren Graham

It is the loooooong awaited second installment in the "regular segment" (haha) of Women Who Make TV Worth Watching. Today's featured actress is the lovely Lauren Graham.

Lauren's character of Lorelai Gilmore on Gilmore Girls is the person I would most like to emulate if she were an actual person (except for her issues with relationships, but we won't go there). If one could have a TV character role model and not be sad and pathetic, she would be mine (ok, so I am sad and pathetic). She is much more quick-witted and quippy than I will ever be though, no matter how hard I try. This amazing TV actress has never won an Emmy, a fact that I find extraordinarily appalling. She has also been a secondary character in many unfortunate movies. I'm really hoping Flash of Genius is actually good. My aunt (who shares my obsession with Ms. Graham) and I have our fingers crossed.

Lauren carried Gilmore Girls through many spectacular seasons (and even some not so spectacular), through the beginning before Alexis Bledel learned facial expressions, through that one season where she decided to talk through her nose, (love you Alexis!), through the super dramatic one where they didn't talk to each other, etc., etc. The only faults I have ever found with her character were the result of writing and directing mistakes and changes, and never Lauren Graham's portrayal. If you haven't seen Gilmore Girls yet, where have you been? Go rent it now! Please don't subject yourself to Because I Said So though, that's like torture.

Monday, October 20, 2008

Halloween costume for the husband

Another one of my polyvore halloween costumes. These are just too much fun!

Saturday, October 18, 2008

All the halloween inspiration you need, even a shopping list!

Confused and/or exasperated over your halloween costume? There is a really great halloween costume contest going on over at polyvore. Entrants put together collages of great costume ideas.

Go create your own or scope out some inspiring looks. In a polyvore collage, each image links to the website it came from so if you find a great concept, you can even go buy the pieces! The invented concept costumes are great but it's the updated or unique takes on classic figures that I think are the best ;)* I wish that I could say I was doing something creative like this for my own costume. Mine this year has me really focused on looking as close to the actual character as possible (to the point of driving me a little nuts).

Who else has ideas? If you enter the polyvore contest, post the link in a comment to share!

*Meghan gets credit for the basic idea of the costume above. I just put together the pieces.

Friday, October 17, 2008

But I'd rather look ridiculous when everybody else does than plain and sensible all by myself

Why, Anne Shirley, you are definitely back in style!

Puffed sleeve dress from banana republic.

Bliss & Mrs. French.

lanterns, originally uploaded by mrs. french.

Lately I feel like my blog has been an advertisement for amazon, apple and other such companies that would need no help from me. Time to focus back in on the indie artists!

I know that Mrs. French has been very popular in the blogosphere of late, but I just have to throw my 2 cents in as well. She takes absolutely goregeous photos and I wanted to share them with you.

The colors, textures, everything is so wonderful! Please go look at her flickr photostream, blog, and, of course, her etsy shop. Go now!

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Yay pumpkins

yay pumpkins, originally uploaded by prideofazchick.

I had so much fun in Prescott over the weekend. It was always a family tradition to go to the Young's farm pumpkin festival every year since we moved to Prescott. It was so disappointing when the farm closed.

But now, new life has been breathed into the pick your own pumpkin tradition this year. There are 2 pumpkin festivals in Chino Valley.

I also had a lot of fun with my polaroid camera there. Click the link for my flickr photostream above to see more of my Prescott weekend through its lens.

Tuesday, October 14, 2008

Another ode to fall

The Haunted Pumpkin Patch, originally uploaded by Solitaire Miles.

I hope you are enjoying wonderful fall weather! Enjoy also this haunted pumpkin patch. Kudos to the photographer.


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