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My Christmas Bests

6 Dec

Between Marquette’s insane snowfall the past few days & the holiday cards that have started to trickle in, it’s safe to say I’ve slipped past my usual excitement around this time of year & into full-on Christmas fever. I love it! Today I received a card from my cousin, Dana, in New York. I would love to be there visiting right now!

What I would give to see Central Park in the winter!

I’ve compiled a list of my favorite Christmas movies and songs to share. They may not be the same as what you like… but then again, they might. : )

Movies

6. How The Grinch Stole Christmas The old cartoon, that is, because Dr. Seuss is absolutely amazing!

5. The Polar Express It’s such a charming story & the author of the book, Chris Van Allsburg, is from Grand Rapids!

4. The Family Stone If you love your mom, watch this movie.

3. The Holiday This movie is just perfect. It’s a huge favorite of mine to watch with my dear friend, Robbie. Berry kiss!!

2. Elf I don’t think I’ve ever quoted another Christmas movie more than this one : )

1. White Christmas This is the B-E-S-T Christmas movie ever! I watch it on Christmas Eve every year & finds its way deeper into my heart every time I watch it. If you like old movies (it was made in 1954), musicals, comedies, dancing… It’s all of those things!

Music

6. Christmas Time Is Here Oh Charlie Brown : )

5. I’ll Be Home for Christmas I love this song so much more now that I live so far away from home. And good luck finding someone better to sing it than Frank!

4. I’ve Got My Love To Keep Me Warm sung by Ella Fitzgerald & Louis Armstrong. Billie Holiday does a great job singing this song too. I can’t decide which one I like more.

3. A Marshmallow World It’s just plain cute : )

2. Baby It’s Cold Outside This is such a close second to my favorite! Zooey Deschanel sings such a beautiful version of it as well!

1. White Christmas There is only one person I want to hear sing this song & it’s the same person who stars in the movie: Bing Crosby. His voice is amazing & the timelessness of it makes it my number one!!

Nothing better!

Date Night!

21 Nov

I’m so excited for today. I finally get to see Harry Potter & The Deathly Hallows tonight! Even better, my boyfriend & I both have the [rare] evening off together, so he’s coming with me : ) I love our date nights!

Finally!!

A lot of people like to criticize this book/movie series so if you’re not a Harry Potter fan, don’t scoff. If you’re not an HP fan but you are a Twilight fan, seriously shut up. I love Twilight just as much as any other female member of our species but Harry Potter, I have to say, is just better. Get past your issues with wizards & wands. The challenges these characters encounter will always outshine Bella’s heartache & insecurities over not being good enough for Edward. I’ve probably pissed quite a few people off now… Sorry! Just remember I do love Twilight too.

Now that I’ve gotten that out- I love that the holiday season means a lot of new releases. I’m begging you, though, don’t see Skyline… Worst. Movie. Ever. Other new movies that look awesome?

Morning Glory

Little Fockers

The Next 3 Days

Due Date

Megamind

The Dilemma

I have less than two hours until Derrick gets here & I can’t wait for our evening to begin : ) Have a happy Sunday!

“Here’s my card…”

10 Mar

For a project in my 318 Graphics class we had to create our own business card that would be viewed as a reflection of ourselves, personalities and/or personal style. I made one with a graphic that’s similar to the accent under my tattoo on my ribcage (I took the ‘reflection’ pretty literally) and for you type-lovers out there, I went with Bell MT as my font. We finally got them back from the print press yesterday evening and so I’ve made it my photo of the day! I guess now I’m a professional student… or something.

please, no stalkers contacting me haha

The alignment was a little off when they cropped it but it took me about 5 minutes before I noticed that so I’m not too worried. : )

This was the first song on my itunes this morning- good wake-me-up!

P.S. DID YOU HEAR?!! The ECLIPSE trailer will be released tomorrow morning!! Love me some Twilight.

2009

30 Dec

I know. I’ve been horrible and negligent to my blog. My excuses: finals & winter break. Between studying & family, I haven’t had much available time to update. But here I am now! Since tomorrow is New Years Eve, I’ve found myself reflecting on the past year, as I’m sure many others are as well. It’s been tough- more challenging, heartbreaking and difficult than probably any other year of my life & I’ll be glad to see it pass. However, keeping that in mind, I think I’ve learned more about myself & what I do/don’t want in my life in this year than any other previous one. For that, I’m thankful.

I’ve composed a list of things, observations & ideas that I’ve learned and want to remember from this year. I can’t wait to see how 2010 adds to it and transforms the things already present on my list.

  • Just because the chips might be whole grain and the cheese is a source of calcium, nachos are still not a healthy snack.
  • Secondhand books are just as good as brand-new ones. Maybe better.
  • Your intuition is with you for a reason. Trust it & it will serve you well.
  • If a picture is worth 1,000 words, then take 1,000 pictures & more. Leave yourself & others with as many thoughts and memories as you can.
  • Yes, for you and most other people, your waist size is bigger than it was in high school. It’s supposed to be like that so stop obsessing. (but please, stay healthy.)
  • When you watch your younger siblings have an attitude & act like little punks, you may say “GOSH, I would never have talked/acted like that.”…. Oooohhhh, yes you did.
  • People make enough of their own excuses. There’s no need for you to make more for them.
  • Getting a tattoo, lip piercing & drastic new haircut all within a couple months of each other causes people to think you’re trying to make some kind of statement or undergoing some kind of transformation. Cool it. (& no, I wasn’t trying to do either of those things!)
  • People will only change for themselves & if they want to. Nothing you say or do is going to change someone’s ways. LET ME REPEAT & CLARIFY: YOU CAN’T MAKE YOUR BF/GF CHANGE. PEOPLE ONLY CHANGE FOR THEMSELVES!!
  • Does it come with age? Because I’ll never understand how an older person can pour a glass of scotch or sip on straight vodka and not gag.
  • New Moon is just as good the 2nd time around… & the 3rd…
  • Forgiveness may be divine, but sometimes forgetting is just too damn hard.
  • The closer I am to graduating college, the more I am considering joining the Peace Corps & it excites me.
  • There is no elegant-looking purse for going to a social gathering that’s big enough to carry around my big ol’ Nikon.
  • Facebook chat is and always will be the worst instant messaging program ever.
  • Go to New York City. Once you’re there, walk everywhere & find places you love that DON’T have the publicity & big names. Once you’ve done that, then of course go to Rockafellar Center, Ellis Island, etc. (& by the way, hailing my first cab was even more thrilling for me than I thought it would be!)
  • Online window shopping is almost as good as actually buying the stuff you’re looking at. Just remember to X out of that window before you give them your credit card number.
  • Your ex is your ex for a reason. (This goes back to people only changing for themselves) That doesn’t mean, though, that after time, patience & a lot of self-pampering & loving, that you can’t become friends.
  • You can only say ‘yes‘ to favors for so many people before you have to stop and say ‘yes’ to yourself. I’m still trying to learn this one.
  • Bolthouse Farms drinks have some sort of addictive drug in them.
  • Don’t think that cars are watching out for you & your bicycle. Even in Marquette.
  • According to Stuff White People Like, I’m probably one of the whitest people ever.
  • My heritage is German. That doesn’t make me a Nazi, people.
  • No matter how much it sucks, any music sounds a little bit better after a couple gin & tonics.
  • I still want a lemur.
  • No matter what, 2010 HAS to be a great year because of all that I can apply to my life that I’ve learned in this long year.
  • For gosh sakes, guys, BE NICE TO PEOPLE & TREAT OTHERS THE SAME WAY YOU WISH TO BE TREATED!

Free smiles

6 Dec

I know I’m not alone when I sometimes feel like nothing seems to be going my way. There isn’t a soul on this earth that hasn’t felt that way before. Maybe it’s because I’ve been feeling that way lately (& maybe it’s because I’m running a fever & can only hope I have enough coffee grounds in this apartment to keep me awake all night to complete the work & studying I need done for tomorrow) but I thought I’d throw together a hodge-podge collection of things I’ve found online that make me laugh, smile & sometimes provide a very necessary distraction from the troubling things in life. I hope they help you too when you’re having just “one of those days”. : )

This one has been my absolute favorite lately. Michelle & I can’t stop watching/quoting it:

If you love McD’s, check this out. Some things look good, others are just scary…

http://foodnetworkhumor.com/2009/07/mcdonalds-menu-items-from-around-the-world-40-pics/

I’ll never get enough of Apple’s movie trailer website.

BWW recipes? Ummm… COOL?! http://www.epicportions.com/2009/02/25/buffalo-wild-wings-recipes/

How many words per minute can you get with Type Racer?

Cubescape is like legos on your computer but cooler. 

James Jean‘s artwork is absolutely stunning.

Have you ever heard of the Blood Type Diet? This is crazy.

Create your own Jackson Pollock masterpiece.

Hopefully you’ll enjoy all of these as much as I do. I have no new photography to share with you but in light of the holiday spirit (notice the snow on my page), I’ll leave you with this:

“People will forget what you said. People will forget what you did. But people will never forget how you made them feel” -Maya Angelou

Remember that quote whenever someone’s made you upset, feel taken advantage of, or hurt. Be respectful and kind to others. It will get you farther in life that you could ever imagine.

GR bound!

23 Nov

Holy wow, when I said I had a busy weekend ahead of me, I had meant it. I’ve neglected this for 3 days & now I’m squeezing this post in between packing & cleaning before leaving for Grand Rapids for my Thanksgiving break! I’m so excited to see my family that I haven’t been able to sit still for days. My friend Chris & I will be making the trip downstate & I’m playing DJ so I hope he’s prepared for my awesome music selection!

So… My weekend. I had the chance to take some fun photos of my friends Kim & Shannon for a Christmas gift for the their parents. I haven’t had a chance to get really far into the editing process but I started on a couple of them last night so I’ll let you take a look : )

Also, this was the weekend of New Moon, in case you didn’t figure that out before with me running my mouth about it. I saw it Friday night with my best friend, Michelle. AMAZING. I loved it so much that I went to see it again last night! (SPOILERS– skip the rest of this paragraph if you haven’t seen it yet & don’t want details) Kristen Stewart finally convinced me that she was Bella & I’m really pleased with how well they followed the book. Favorite scene? The wolves chasing Victoria through the woods/Bella’s cliff jump/Harry Clearwater’s heart attack all-in-one. Cheesiest scene? When Alice ‘sees’ Bella becoming a vampire & her vision shows her & Edward frolicking in the woods together, for lack of a better word. Pfffffftttt give me a break! I said it last night though, screw all of this ‘team’ business. If I had my way, I’d take Edward AND Jacob & Emmett, Jasper & the werewolves too. I’m sure I’d find a way to split my time between all of them!

Okay, enough of that. There’s some more work to be done on them & a lot of others to edit but here are some photos from this weekend…

Kim & Shannon : )

these ones were sweet. i can't wait to edit more

Leapfrog!

Happy weekend!

19 Nov

It’s officially… MY WEEKEND!! That means I get to relax, right? WRONG. I work Friday, Saturday & Sunday. I’m volunteering at my job on Saturday for a pizza-eating contest they’re hosting (it’s okay, I get free beer!)… That’s the work stuff. Here’s all the FUN I get to have!!- NEW MOON comes out at midnight tonight but I have to wait until tomorrow to see it. I’m doing holiday family portraits for the Carlson sisters, portraits for the Caldwell sisters and portraits for my friends Kara & Lacy. LOTS of pictures to be taken!

Actually, aside from the friends that I’ve asked to model for me for projects of mine, I’ve had quite a few requests for portraits. Ohhh if you could see my smile & feel my excitement right now : ) Here is the portrait work I have lined up for myself with all this photography business (either by request, promises to friends, etc):

  • Carlson sisters (holiday)
  • Caldwell sisters (gift for mom & dad)
  • Sarah Boogren (pregnancy progression portraits for the next 7 months)
  • Kara Nordlof
  • Lacy Lafave
  • Jennifer Engstrom (portraits of her children)
  • Colton Newton & Brianna Ebenstein (couple portraits… maybe some engagement photos soon?!)
  • Valerie Sue Peterson
  • Sarah O’Neill
  • Christine Smessaert
  • Mandy Cowell
  • Scott Wanhala (bike stuff)
  • Chris Thomas
  • Jessica Katie Ohlsen (my final series for a class)
  • Cara Gould (my final series for a class)
  • Gene Ross (my final series for a class)
  • Jesse Carlson (my final series for a class)
  • Matt Mckindles (my final series for a class)
  • Cecily Browne (my final series for a class)

I have a lot of editing on my hands coming up : ) If you want to be a part of the portrait craze too and are in my area, please contact me about it!

Besides that, if you’re in the Marquette area this weekend, I’d highly advise you to come to Aubree’s on Washington St. on Saturday at 1 pm for the pizza-eating contest we’re hosting! Bring 3 cans of non-perishable food to enter the competition. Even if you’re not a part of the competition, we have a SWEET DEAL for those of you 21 & up- $4 pitchers of Labatt Blue & $5 pitchers of KBC Red Jacket ALL DAY!! It’s an insane deal and I hope a lot of people take advantage of it.

Okay FINE I guess I’ll let you see the final products for my mock 303 project. Also, since this blog is a smorgasbord of a million thoughts & ideas anyway, I’ll provide you with another one of my mom’s awesome recipes to try for Thanksgiving and a little something to get you even more in the mood for New Moon. Have fun!

Michelle: Caffeine (paint is still drying!)

Jessica: Laughter

Okay, this recipe is a family favorite for us. Mom makes it for every holiday, family get-together, whatever. She gets yelled at if she doesn’t so you’d better try it and see what I’m talking about…

Mom’s Cream Puff Dessert

Ingredients:

  • 1/2 cup butter or margarine
  • 1 cup water
  • 1 cup flour
  • 4 eggs
  • 8 oz. cream cheese (softened)
  • 4 cups milk
  • 3 pkgs. instant vanilla pudding (3 oz. each)
  • 1 large tub of Cool Whip
  • Chocolate Syrup

Melt butter in water. Add flour & cook, stirring constantly until it forms a ball (this will happen quickly). Turn into a bowl and beat in the eggs one at a time. Spread in a grease 9×13 pan. Bake at 400°F for 35-40 minutes. Cool. Mix together cream cheese and milk, beat until smooth. Add pudding, one at a time and beat. Spread over the shell once it’s cooled. Top with Cool Whip & drizzle with chocolate syrup. Chill for at least one hour.

Mom’s Tip: Add the chocolate syrup just before serving. The lines will stay more delicate-looking rather than running into the whipped cream. Use the chocolate drizzle sparingly. Dig in!!

And since midnight just can’t come soon enough for many of you:

Pass the popcorn

16 Nov

I really can’t begin to tell you how obsessed I am with movies. The first movie I ever saw in a theater was Disney’s Beauty and the Beast. I used to go to the theater with my dad all the time when I lived at home & now when I go back to visit, it’s still something him & I love to do together. I tell you this because yes, I am a Twilight freak & I’m itching to settle into one of those seats with my popcorn, sour patch kids & slushy to watch New Moon on Friday!

I’m not one of those people who like to get to the theater just in time for the beginning of the movie, either. Half the fun is to see all the previews! That’s why I love Apple’s movie trailer website. It’s updated with movie trailers whenever a new one comes out and I check it religiously. If you don’t know what site I’m talking about then here:

http://www.apple.com/trailers/

Unfortunately, I won’t be home in Grand Rapids for New Moon’s release into the theaters in a few days. I live in Marquette in Michigan’s upper peninsula & let’s just say they’re slacking on their theater-upkeep, haha. However, I think in the case of New Moon, not even uncomfortable seats or lack of cherry slushies could deter my excitement : )

Here’s a link to New Moon’s trailer & information on Apple’s site: http://www.apple.com/trailers/summit/newmoon/

Andddddd here’s the trailer : ) —

P.S. If you’re really interested in knowing just how much of a geek I am, know I not only love the Twilight Saga but I’ve also read the entire Harry Potter series through 4, maybe 5 times. In addition, I wear thick-framed glasses, collect wedding magazines & like to make a fuss over incorrect grammar usage (your/you’re, there/their/they’re, then/than, etc).