Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Circle-Filled Masculine Birthday Card

Flip flop flop: I got caught in the rain unexpectedly today going from the main office building to my building. I feel like that's happened several times this month. Maybe I should just carry an umbrella with me at all times. My flip flop slipped off as I was trying to cross the street in a hurry. The people at the stop light must have laughed to themselves, thinking "Thank goodness I'm not her!"

At the office: You know a meeting's not going to go so well when the calendar appointment doesn't come with an agenda. The goal was to discuss a website that I asked to have created. I was confused as to what there was to discuss since I thought it was pretty self explanatory. My initial request for this site happened in January 2011. The assignment got handed to someone else to complete the job, which was approved by me and my boss already. All this original guy had to do was click "approve", but nooo, he wanted to talk about it. I'm sorry. If your plate is so
full that your assignments get handed to someone else, you forfeit your right to an opinion. Then he had the audacity to tell me that the page would probably not be approved today. What?! All you gotta do is click "approve". Why is this difficult? I spent the end of my day sending his manager a complain-y email. Fun times.

Card: My cousin's birthday is coming up, so I decided to make his birthday card today. I love how my Stella and Rose paper pad is double sided because it gave me more options in terms of masculine papers.

Card Specs:
Embossing powder: Stampendous! in white
Embossing ink: VersaMark
Ink: Tim Holtz Distress Ink in Vintage Photo
Stamps: Hero Arts- Sending Smiles (sentiment)
Paper: My Mind's Eye- Stella and Rose
Punch: EK Success Circle punch (1 3/8 inch), Recollections
White Gel Pen: Uni-Ball Signo Broad White Gel Pen
Other: We R Memory Keepers Sew Easy Fancy Floss in Slate

Sunday, July 29, 2012

Photo-filled Sunday

Fortune cookie fortune: I thought the fortune that I got in my fortune cookie from last night's Chinese food was totally timely, given my recent computer purchase. :D

Food: My cousin who was visiting from Taiwan this week is leaving tomorrow so I went to my parents' house tonight to say good bye. It was great timing because there was new food there. Another cousin had gone to New York this weekend and came with food to share. The cat pastry has cream inside, while the fish one has red bean paste in it. Yum!

Sister stuff: Speaking of food, I think RJ's favorite person is Julie because she always gives him treats when she visits. Notice his intense stare at the creamsicle. Ha ha.

I found out today that Julie changed the desktop wallpaper on my new computer to one with Jeremy Renner. Not knowing that she did that because I didn't minimize any of my open windows, I changed it to another Jeremy Renner wallpaper. I told her about it, and she was like "What? You changed it?! I changed it too! I was wondering why you didn't say anything! I was waiting for you to say something!" Ah, siblings. #practicaljokefail. I can't wait for the new Bourne movie to come out!

Card: My uncle's birthday is coming up later this week, so I wanted to make his birthday card. He's a big garden guy, but I thought the fern-y foliage would be a better focal point for the card instead of flowers.
Card Specs:
Ink: Colorbox chalk ink in Chestnut Roan and Warm Green. Stampin' Up in Certainly Celery
Stamps: Hero Arts- Sending Smiles (sentiment), Stampin' Up- Garden Silhouettes, SEI- Winter Song
Paper: American Crafts- Letterbox
Punch: EK Success Postage Stamp border punch

Saturday, July 28, 2012

New Fun Toy

I was determined to get a whole bunch of things done today. Ready for the rundown?
  • Library to drop off Mockingjay. I got only halfway through it. I dunno, I'm just not as into the series as, say, Harry Potter. I'll eventually pick it back up to finish it.
  • Gas station to gas up the car. $3.45/gal. :(
  • Target for Sally Hansen Insta-Dri nail polish, which was on sale. I ended up getting the shade called Racey Rouge.
  • Bank to deposit a check.
  • Giant to buy a box of creamsicles.
  • Home to drop off items and take a little break.
  • Back out to the mall to walk around. New York & Company was having a really great sale, but I didn't find anything that I really wanted. Instead, I ended up at Old Navy and got some t-shirts.
  • Best Buy for my new computer! The Toshiba that I got for graduate school about 6 years ago is on its last leg so I thought I'd pounce on a Sony Vaio since it was on sale. It runs so much more smoothly! I felt like I could justify this purchase by saying that it was a personal reward for doing well on my performance review and getting a raise. It's such a great feeling to buy something that you've been saving up for.

This evening, Robyn and Beth came over for Chinese food. I got the shrimp and scallop with seasonal vegetables, which was okay. In my head, I thought it would look like something else that the restaurant serves, so when I saw the take out container, my excitement kinda deflated. I ate some and gave the rest to Julie (who showed up later) to give to Dad at the house. The funny thing about this restaurant is that I've eaten there a few times, but my uncle's the one that orders so I have no idea what I'm eating. All I know is that it tastes good. Ha ha.

We watched the Olympics and made fun of the commentators who can't really seem to say anything consistently nice about anyone. They are so critical!

Song of the day: "Dance With Me Tonight"- Olly Murs

Friday, July 27, 2012

R.I.P. Uncle, Part 2

Today was the burial service for my uncle that passed away last week. I actually ended up staying over at my parents' house on Thursday night so that it'd make this morning run a lot smoother. We left the house to go to his house to do a moment of silence before taking his remains to his resting spot at the memorial park. I wasn't feeling overly emotional since the news had already sunk in for me and I've accepted the fact that he's gone, but once Dad started talking and his voice was shaky, I started tearing up as well. I teared up for him since he was the one that drove my uncle (his brother) around to doctor's appointments and was there with him every step of the way. Dad continues to handle all the legal stuff since his passing, but I'm sure that this day made everything a lot more real.

The burial service was really nice, and the weather was perfect. The funeral director was super kind and compassionate. I suppose it'd be awful to be in that kind of business and be a mean person. It just wouldn't be a good fit. Dad said a few words again and then the remains were put in the ground. A stack of his favorite books and a flower from each of us went in with him. We later joked that we should have had put his glasses in with him, just in case (humor definitely helps during these sad times). Once the service was over, everyone came back to my parents' house for a sushi lunch.

After lunch, Dad, Julie and I drove around to get some legal stuff taken care of for my uncle and then Julie came back with me to my place to make brownies to bring with us to my cousin's house as snacks to eat during the London 2012 Olympics. My favorite parts of the opening ceremony were the ode to the British literary villains and the Queen/Bond scene at the very beginning. So funny!

By the way, sleeping in my old twin bed, I'm not sure how I managed for so long. Now that I sleep in a full size one, it's tough to go back to something smaller!

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

An Ungraceful Moment

Good deed of the day: I went to Safeway around lunch time to get some snacks and on my way out, a pregnant lady approached me. She showed me a crumpled piece of paper that had a list of shelters on it. She looked like she was really struggling, so I offered her $5. "Actually, do you have $10?" o_0 That was totally awkward. I offered her the $5 and we parted ways...only for me to see her approach some other people down the block. That's gotta be a tough life. :(

At the office:
Don't you just hate getting caught with your mouth full? Mmmyeah. I was monitoring a conference call this afternoon while snacking on crackers. Suddenly I get asked a question. For a second, I thought I thought I could finish chewing what I was eating, but I ended up spitting out the crackers and answering the question. Thankfully no one was watching because that'd be the least graceful moment ever.

Craft Show 2012: I recently received an email from the organizers of last year's high school craft show that Robyn and I did. They wanted to inform us that there wasn't going to be a craft show this year, but didn't specify the reasons why. Even though Robyn and I made some money at that event, the last minute postponement of the event and the lack of vendors and shoppers made it a not-so-great event overall. I would have thought they would have pulled together to make up for last year's event, but sadly, that's not the case.

Card: For today's card I challenged myself to use only two sheets of patterned paper. For the strips, it was all from one sheet of paper: the A side, B side and the strip of paper that says the paper's manufacturer and collection. I was also pleased that this card turned out fairly gender neutral.

Card Specs:
Ink: Colorbox chalk ink in Charcoal. Tim Holtz Distress Ink in Weathered Wood.
Stamps: Studio G
Paper: American Crafts- Peachy Keen, Chatterbox
Punch: We R Memory Keepers Corner Chomper

Sunday, July 22, 2012

CPS #275

Open house: The townhome that's 2 doors down from me went on the market this past Wednesday, and today, they had their first open house. The listing price is $24,000 more than what I paid for my place last year, even though the set up is exactly the same. Sure, they installed brand new carpet and updated their kitchen and have lots of shelving in the closet, but I didn't think it was enough to justify a jacked up price. I have a friend that's put in an offer for the house, but I'm not sure if they'll take it since it's lower than the listing price.

Movie: Last night I watched 21 Jump Street. While I am a fan of Channing Tatum, I can't say that it was the best movie ever. Entertaining, yes. Hilarious awkward scenes, yes. DVD worthy, mmmno.

Card: Here's my take on CPS #275. I had a strip of the hot pink gingham paper next to my paper trimmer, and it was exactly the right about of paper that I needed to fold three origami hearts. I chose the green paper because I thought it'd be a great complement to the hot pink. Originally, the sentiment was stamped on the pale green paper, but then I wasn't able to stamp it straight despite using a stamp positioner, so I tried it again on another piece of patterned paper and adhered it right on top. Whew, crisis averted!

Card Specs:
Card base: Recollections
Ink: Colorbox chalk ink in Blackbird
Paper: American Crafts- Letterbox, Recollections
Stamp: Studio G
Other: Brown Sharpie Ultra Fine Point marker

Thursday, July 19, 2012

R.I.P. Uncle

Some sad news to dad's older brother passed away peacefully early Tuesday morning from his long battle with cancer. I was lucky that I was able to go see him on July 4 and this past Sunday to say goodbye. As sad as I am that he is gone, I'm relieved (?) that he is no longer in pain since he was suffering for quite a while.

Dad's been taking care of my uncle's estate and paperwork the past few days. He asked me to make a few thank you cards to keep on hand for the people that helped out during this tough time. I, of course, wanted to help out so that was my activity tonight.

Card Specs (birthday):
Ink: Colorbox chalk ink in Chestnut Roan, Warm Green. Stampin' Up in Certainly Celery.
Stamp: Stampin' Up- Lovely as a Tree, The Paper Company Studio- Greetings (sentiment)

Monday, July 16, 2012

CPS #273

My friend Morgan's birthday is on Wednesday, so I wanted to make his card tonight and send it along tomorrow. Many of the card elements were already on my desk (brown polka dot paper, kraft cardstock, envelope pattern stamped piece of white cardstock), so that made the card super easy to piece together. I used CPS #273 as inspiration.

Card Specs:
Card base: Recollections
Ink: Colorbox chalk ink in Blackbird, Chestnut Roan
Stamps: Studio G (sentiment), Hero Arts- Envelope Pattern
Paper: American Crafts- Abode
Brad: American Crafts
White Gel Pen: Uni-Ball Signo Broad White Gel Pen

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Update on 2012 Movies and Book

Movies: On Friday, I watched the movie Warrior on Redbox which was surprisingly good despite its intense violence. And last night, I went to see Magic Mike with Meg and Robyn (finally). We had originally planned to go see it opening weekend, but with the huge storm and power outage, that was just not going to happen. We were really surprised that there was a family of several children in the theater. Did the parents just not do their research before they came to the movie? The previews alone would give them nightmares! Fortunately, the parents were smart to leave within the first few minutes of the movie. The movie was very entertaining, despite there being a disturbing drug background story. Channing Tatum, sigh.

Oh, by the way, this was a super funny clip of him with Jimmy Fallon. "Ew!" Ha ha.

Book #4 of 2012: I forgot to mention that I finished Catching Fire during the whole power outage event a few weeks ago. I thought the beginning was a little slow (I almost gave up), but I stuck it out since, well, what else could I do with no power? I'm glad that I did because the last half of the book was more action packed. I started Mockingjay when I was waiting for a friend to go see Brave a few weeks ago and was able to find it at the library not too long after that.

Monday, July 9, 2012

Case of the Mondays

I went to the office this morning only to find that the elevators in the building were broken. I had two options. Either I could go back to the main building and camp out in an empty office or I could suck it up and climb the stairs up to the 7th floor where my office is. I decided to go with option #2. How hard can it be, right? I do a lot of cardio with all the spin classes that I take. This shouldn't be too bad. WRONG. I felt kinda winded when I got to my office. Two of my co-workers were talking in the hall. I tried not to play it calm and cool, but my breathing gave it away. "Yeah, Tina, we just went through that too."

Fortunately, they called a technician who got them back in working order by the afternoon. Even if he didn't, climbing down the stairs is easier that climbing up them!

Was this supposed to be a surprise fitness test, and I just didn't get the memo???

Sunday, July 8, 2012

Happy Anniversary, House!

July 8, 2011 was a major day of my life- the day that I officially bought a house! I call it my Independence Day from my parents since I was living at their house beforehand. However, I think that's kinda misleading since I'm over at the house a lot. This year has gone by so are some of the highlights/lessons.

a. Spiders are best killed with a vacuum cleaner. No contact necessary.

b. Spiders can be killed with brooms. #shortpeopleproblems.

c. Cats are great for keeping an eye out on spiders and bugs (see a and b).

d. If you keep order in the house every day, there's less to clean when guests arrive.

e. It makes me happy to see lines in the carpet that the vacuum left behind. OMG, I'm turning into my mother. Always a nice feeling.

f. Be careful of doors that don't work. They will eventually fall off and scratch your wall.

g. Be sure to have the correct color of paint to cover up the scratch on said wall (see f).

h. Artwork helps cover up ugly mismatched paint (see f and g).

i. Having a home warranty is awesome, especially when the air conditioner needs to be replaced.

j. If you're patient enough and not too picky, you can find some really great secondhand items at estate/yard sales to furnish your first home.

Card: I finally had the time to make a card today. With all the power and heat issues, I haven't really felt like making one until now.

Card Specs:
Tag: American Crafts Bits- Peachy Keen Collection
Paper: American Crafts- Peachy Keen, American Crafts- Letterbox
White Gel Pen: Uni-Ball Signo Broad White Gel Pen
Stickers: Lily Bee Design
Punch: Fiskars Scalloped Sentiment border punch

Songs of the day: "Blow Me (One Last Kiss)"- Pink and "Scream"- Usher

Friday, July 6, 2012


Yep, it's 2 movies in 2 days. Today's movie was Brave. I went with a friend, and we sat in a theater surrounded by a sea of little kids. It's okay though. It just goes to show that we're still kids at heart. The movie was pretty good, but I don't think it's at the level of Pixar's Finding Nemo and Toy Story. It was heartwarming, and I definitely could relate to the mother-daughter dynamic shown in the movie. Afterwards, we went to California Pizza Kitchen, where I had the mushroom/pepperoni/sausage pizza and a mojito (I'm not convinced there was any alcohol in it though). We shared a slice of red velvet cake, and it was fully awesome.

I also scored 2 bottles of lotion at Bath and Body Works at 75% off. (happy dance)

Thursday, July 5, 2012

The Amazing Spider-Man

Movie: Julie and I went to go see The Amazing Spider-Man today, and it was pretty good. I wasn't sure how this one was going to work out since it was a new actor playing Spider-Man and the love interest was Gwen Stacy instead of Mary Jane Watson. I'm kinda glad we didn't go see it in 3D or something because the flying-through-the-air scenes were kinda intense. When we first got there, we were the only ones in the theater. I guess that's what happens when you go see a 10 AM show. A few other people showed up but we were all spread out so no one was in anyone else's way. The actor that played Peter Parker did the "awkward teenager" look very well. Would it be something that I'd buy on DVD...hmm...I'm leaning towards probably not. I'd definitely check it out on Redbox though.

After the movie, we went to get some Indian food, yum! :)

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Happy July 4th!

Today started out on a sad note actually. My uncle (Dad's older brother) has been battling cancer for the past few months and the prognosis has not been very good. Since Julie (my sister) was home from school, Dad thought it'd be a good idea all three of us to go over to my uncle's house to cheer him up. Apparently he talks about my sister and I to the hospital folks. On the way there, Dad warned us that my uncle had lost a lot of weight. I kept that in mind, but still, I was not prepared for what I saw...a person who normally has a lot of energy and a loud joyful voice be reduced to someone whose body is failing him. Fortunately his mind is still very strong...he even had the energy to do his routine lecture...the importance of having good reading and writing skills and keeping journal. Even in his state, he still pushes us to be our best. I think it was good that we still had the BBQ tonight, just so that Dad could focus on something else for a few hours.

After the trip to my uncle's house, we went to Safeway to get some last minute BBQ stuff and then I took a nap in my old bed at my parents' house. Gotta save up energy for eating, ha ha.

Meg, my uncle and aunt, and several cousins came over to help eat the steaks, pasta salad, and tres leches (my contribution). Hope y'all had a great holiday! :)

Tuesday, July 3, 2012

Happier Refrigerator

Storm aftermath: I was able to blast through a bunch of items on my work to-do list today: sent off performance review summary, started reporting on the Annual Plan, and worked on my article for my organization's quarterly publication. This was great progress since I'm not going back to the office until Monday, yay! The acting Executive Director sent out an email yesterday saying that we could leave 2 hours early today, so I busted out of there at around 2 PM and headed to my parents' house to hang out with my sister, who is home for the next few days. By hang out, I really mean fall asleep on her bed while she does work on her computer. Heh.

Originally we were going to have dinner at my uncle's house tonight, but because of an emergency plumbing problem, the dinner got moved to my parents' house. We'll be having a BBQ there tomorrow too. Lots of family time these past few weeks!

I went to the grocery store to get ingredients for the tres leches cake, which will be my contribution to tomorrow's BBQ. All the smaller milks were gone, so I had to get a gallon. I hope my sister will help me put a dent in it. It was either that or no milk at all. My refrigerator is happier today than yesterday.

Etsy: Yesterday was a really good card day! My co-worker purchased 8 cards from me, and I got a 5 card Etsy order from a guy that I went to college with. Talk about a blast from the past.

Song of the day: "Dark Side" - Kelly Clarkson

Monday, July 2, 2012

Stormy Weather!

OMG, the storm that came through here on Friday was terrible. I was at my parents' house when I saw a weather report that a co-worker posted on Facebook. It was in all CAPS, so I had a feeling that it was serious. I zipped home just in time. The storm crashed through about 20 minutes after that, and I lost power. The adventure begins...

I woke up on Saturday, not really thinking much of the storm. I was thinking to myself that I need to run to the ATM and gas station because I was still planning to go hang out with Meg and Robyn Saturday night. I noticed that the main intersection's traffic light was out. I'm still thinking that things weren't really that bad. However, I got to the bank, and a lady was walking away from it. I was about to pull into the parking lot and we made eye contact. She shook her head from side to side and mouthed, "It's closed." Sigh, ok, well, maybe I can gas up my car. So I drove to a nearby gas station. It was closed too because there was no electricity to power it up. Super. I then decided to go to my parents' house to check on them. There was a huge tree branch that hit the sunroom but everything else was okay (see photos below). Some people were not as lucky as I saw many trees down and some even fallen on people's houses and cars. I ended up staying over there on Saturday night because they got their power back on.

On Sunday morning, I went back to my place to check on RJ and throw away some of the food in my refrigerator. The chicken and pork chops in the freezer were no good. I was so sad to throw them away, but I would have been even more upset if I got sick after eating them. Food safety first! I went back to my parents' house afterwards only to come back to a warm house because the power at my parents' house went out in the afternoon. I stuck it out with RJ for a few hours and then headed back out to my uncle's house because he was the only one I knew that had power. It's good to have family nearby! I slept on the air mattress in my living room and woke up around 5:45 AM today. I really needed to take a shower. The heat and the humidity was just nuts. Fortunately, I had some warm water still in the hot water tank. Thank goodness for small blessings.

I went over to my uncle's house after work today for dinner (he and my aunt have been taking care of all us storm refugees) and to charge my phone. I checked the Pepco app on my iPhone around 9 PM and the app said that my zip code was no longer identified as part of the outage area! Hmm, interesting. How reliable is the information though? My cousins and parents went home to check out respective houses, and we found out that we all have power! YAY! We'll still be going back to my uncle's house tomorrow for dinner because none of us has food in the fridge. Ha ha.

RJ was on the lookout for the power company to fix the electricity yesterday...with no luck.