Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Shot Through The Heart ...

And Your to Blame, honey you give love ... a BAD NAME ...
I play my part and you play your game ...
you give love a bad name.

Ahhhhh - soooo good. A few of my closest friends came out Saturday night to help me live up some of my last days in DC. If you know anything about me, you know I love to sing in the car, on the sofa, in the gym, really anywhere there is some good music to sing along too. And as mentioned before, I love 80's ballads - they are especially great to karaoke to. Thanks to all the fabulous ladies that came out to support - you know who you are! It was soo fun, I only wish we took some more pictures!

In case you are wondering, some other songs I sang at karaoke besides Bon Jovi?
  • Shoop - Salt N Pepa
  • Faith - George Michael
  • Black Velvet - Alannah Myles (I think this is her only hit - but it is a HIT)
And those were only the songs I stood up to sing with the microphone with my fabulous girlfriends. There was a lot of singing from our table, as you can see here:

And here we REALLY get into it ... we don't just sing ... we have hand gestures and everything because THAT is how you rock out and really mean it.

These are the girls from work - three of my best friends in DC - they put this whole thing on and really made it a rockin good time. Thanks for everything ladies! Truly you are gems.

*pictures courtesy of Lis and her amazingly sneaky photo snapping - thanks!

Saturday, July 28, 2007

things I like today

I was thinking that I see a lot of things I like online - pictures of houses and home decorations mostly - and I often save them onto my computer. Then it came to me ... blogging about it can help me to keep track of it all. So, this again is for me.

These are wall decorations ... king and queen crown motifs ...
we know I like this for some reason I can't quite explain.

Stack o'luggage ... I like the different colors of the leathers and
the different depths of each piece.
PS Annie, I promise I had saved this picture before
you posted ... I am not copying you!

Its a bit difficult to see the details here, but the fireplace molding is
what I love love love. All the other details are just so so for me
(I also like large white urn and the sofa, just not in that color ... velvet and carved wood - yes!)

This chandelier is only $140! Can you believe it?!
Change the color of the shades and it can go in any room.

I LOVE paisley. It is on my bed right now.
And so I love this wall paper ... just NOT here. Too busy and crazy.
But it could work somewhere else.

The Claudia bed from pottery barn has been on my list for a few years. I can't quite justify buying it since I have been moving every year for the past three years. It is hard to see here and the country style is not exactly what I have in mind ... but I LOVE the finials ... they are vintage inspired glass door knobs! So fun.

I also enjoy the whole carved wood headboard. Love carved wood.

I totally dig the upholstered headboard as well. This shiny color is fun and really bold. Not sure I would actually use this in a room of my own - but it does get the ideas going.

I heart claw-footed tubs ... they are so dramatic and beautiful!
(But I hate this tile pattern in the back)

This cluttered picture was chosen because of the various chairs used. The white chair in the back - fabulous! The brown leather chairs to the left also great.

*most pictures from domino.com

Friday, July 27, 2007

the last day

Today is my last day at work ... which means its the start of the countdown ... 11 or 12* more days left in the District ... 11 or 12* more days living on the East Coast .... I don't know how to feel.

Re-cap of DC to come.

* 11 or 12 because I still don't know exactly what day I will be flying out to LA.

Monday, July 23, 2007

Hill Cumorah

Since my time is wearing thin on the East Coast I am trying to seize every opportunity to see the sites on this edge of the country. I was lucky enough to stumble upon a weekend trip being organized to up-state New York for the last performance of the Hill Cumorah Pageant. My travel mates and I made some interesting observations surrounding the pageant. Mainly this:

If the Mormon people have anything remotely similar to the idea of a pilgrimage to mecca as Muslims do - this would be it. Actually any historic church site will do ... but Wayne and Seneca Counties in New York (Palmyra and Fayette in particular) can be described as the "birth place" of Mormonism ... or in other words, where the gospel was restored to the earth. How amazing is that!

Beautiful farm land in Fayette, New York

Joseph Smith had what is known as the First Vision and the Book of Mormon was first printed in Palmyra, while the Book of Mormon was translated and the church was formally organized in Fayette. It was beautiful. And the pageant was amazing as well ... there were pyrotechnics and water spraying on the STAGE!

The stage before the sunset and the actors took their places

This is a shot from atop the Hill Cumorah -
looking down on the stage and at all the seating set up for the pageant.

I have decided that I need to summer in upstate New York. The small town main streets and the old buildings that line them are great. The mom & pop shops, antiques, wide-open spaces ... everything! I just loved it. We stayed at this camp by Seneca Lake and I think it would be so fabulous to go boating, go to town fairs, and attend the pageant!

Bay windows ... a favorite of mine. And I love the pillars on the porch.

I love the details of this house!

This is not that great of a picture - but this is the original of one of
my favorite paintings often found in church buildings and temples all over the world.
It is of Christ appearing to the people of the American Continent after being resurrected.

Books in the print shop.

The Print Shop where the Book of Mormon was first printed.

Wednesday, July 18, 2007

"love is like a bomb, come' on baby come and get it on"

Tonight I watched VH1's 100 Greatest Songs of the 80's ... I almost cried I was so happy. Here is the list ... so you can reminisce. Feel free to sing out loud, because you know you want to. Why was I born in the 80's and thus could not fully enjoy the awesomeness that is 80s music? But then really I am the lucky one ... I don't have to listen to all the terrible songs that accompanied these singles. Greatest Hits albums were made for me and I couldn't be happier. And I don't have to claim any responsibility for contributing to ozone depletion due to the mass amounts of hairspray used ... because lets be honest, hair that big was on its way out by the time I had enough hair to tease.

I just want to point out that I have mentioned THE greatest 80's song here and really it comes up in conversation quite often in my life. In fact I just watched Jon and the boys sing it for LIVE EARTH while in the 'burg. I heart Bon Jovi.

Unfortunately America's voting on VH1 doesn't always reflect the best songs (according to me of course) and I highlight my favs, just for your information. But before you take a gander at the list ... one song that didn't make it and seriously broke my heart ... Crowded House - Don't Dream It's Over. Ultimate 80's Bands ... I love the Cure, Bon Jovi, Def Leppard, Whitesnake, Guns N Roses, Poison, Duran Duran, Talking Heads, The Cars ... I can't even mention them all.

Anyway take a look - as the Cure says ... "its just like heaven".

1 "Livin’ on a Prayer" Bon Jovi
2 "Pour Some Sugar On Me" Def Leppard
3 "Hungry Like The Wolf" Duran Duran
4 "Billie Jean" Michael Jackson
5 "When Doves Cry" Prince
6 "I Can’t Go For That (No Can Do)" Daryl Hall & John Oates
7 "Sweet Child O’ Mine " Guns N' Roses
8 "Like A Virgin" Madonna
9 "Walk This Way" Run-D.M.C.
10 "You Shook Me All Night Long" AC/DC
11 "Don’t Stop Believin'" Journey
12 "How Will I Know" Whitney Houston
13 "With Or Without You" U2
14 "Walk Like An Egyptian" The Bangles
15 "Jump" Van Halen
16 "Need You Tonight" INXS
17 "Here I Go Again" Whitesnake
18 "Come On Eileen" Dexy's Midnight Runners
19 "Time After Time" Cyndi Lauper
20 "Jessie’s Girl" Rick Springfield
21 "Beat It" Michael Jackson
22 "Just Like Heaven" The Cure
23 "Girls Just Want To Have Fun" Cyndi Lauper
24 "Take On Me" a-ha
25 "Our Lips Are Sealed" The Go-Go's
26 "Welcome To The Jungle" Guns N' Roses
27 "Too Shy" Kajagoogoo
28 "Wake Me Up Before You Go-Go" Wham!
29 "Burning Down The House " Talking Heads
30 "Love Is A Battlefield" Pat Benatar
31 "Under Pressure" Queen & David Bowie
32 "Sister Christian" Night Ranger
33 "Tainted Love" Soft Cell
34 "Every Rose Has It’s Thorn" Poison
35 "In The Air Tonight" Phil Collins
36 "867-5309 / Jenny" Tommy Tutone
37 "Janie’s Got A Gun" Aerosmith
38 "Pride (In the Name Of Love)" U2
39 "I Melt With You" Modern English
40 "Love Shack" The B-52's
41 "Dr. Feelgood" Motley Crüe
42 "London Calling" The Clash
43 "Look Of Love" ABC
44 "Cruel Summer" Bananarama
45 "Nasty" Janet Jackson
46 "Every Breath You Take" The Police
47 "We’re Not Gonna Take It" Twisted Sister
48 "Born In The U.S.A." Bruce Springsteen
49 "(You Gotta) Fight For Your Right
(To Party!)" Beastie Boys
50 "Sweet Dreams (Are Made of This)" Eurythmics
51 "Round And Round" Ratt
52 "You Spin Me Round (Like A Record)" Dead Or Alive
53 "White Wedding" Billy Idol
54 "Push It" Salt-N-Pepa
55 "I Ran (So Far Away)" A Flock Of Seagulls
56 "Total Eclipse Of The Heart" Bonnie Tyler
57 "Mickey" Toni Basil
58 "Do You Really Want To Hurt Me" Culture Club
59 "Jack & Diane" John Mellencamp
60 "Bust A Move" Young M.C.
61 "Mr. Roboto" STYX
62 "Take My Breath Away" Berlin
63 "Whip It" Devo
64 "Straight Up" Paula Abdul
65 "I Want to Know What Love Is" Foreigner
66 "Just Can’t Get Enough" Depeche Mode
67 "Keep On Loving You" REO Speedwagon
68 "Fight The Power" Public Enemy
69 "It’s The End of the World As
We Know It" R.E.M.
70 "I Love Rock N’ Roll" Joan Jett & The Blackhearts
71 "Super Freak" Rick James
72 "One Thing Leads To Another" The Fixx
73 "99 Luftbaloons" Nena
74 "Faith" George Michael
75 "Little Red Corvette" Prince
76 "She Blinded Me With Science" Thomas Dolby
77 "Candy Girl" New Edition
78 "Call Me" Blondie
79 "Don’t You Want Me?" Human League
80 "It Takes Two" Rob Base & DJ E-Z Rock
81 "Word Up" Cameo
82 "Tempted" Squeeze
83 "Kiss" Prince
84 "All Night Long (All Night)" Lionel Richie
85 "Addicted To Love" Robert Palmer
86 "I Want Candy" Bow Wow Wow
87 "Rock Me Amadeus " Falco
88 "Ain’t Nobody" Rufus & Chaka Khan
89 "Brass In Pocket" The Pretenders
90 "Wild Thing" Tone-Loc
91 "Walking On Sunshine" Katrina & The Waves
92 "You Got It (The Right Stuff)" New Kids On The Block
93 "Cars" Gary Numan
94 "Start Me Up" Rolling Stones
95 "Only In My Dreams" Debbie Gibson
96 "Down Under" Men At Work
97 "What I Like About You" The Romantics
98 "My Prerogative" Bobby Brown
99 "Everybody Have Fun Tonight" Wang Chung
100 "Working For The Weekend" Loverboy

Tuesday, July 17, 2007

this one's for april (and her brother)

US Holocaust Memorial Museum - July 2007

April's little brother is serving a mission for our church in Latvia ... I thought of them both when I took this picture.

Monday, July 16, 2007


As in Harrisonburg, Virginia. I met Clarkson's family two weekends ago and it was fantastic! I think that I want to move to Harrisonburg and buy an old house with a wrap around porch in the middle of town, restore it, and work for the local preservation society when I finish school in Oregon. And hang out with Clarkson's parents. And her aunt and cousin. It would be wonderful. I could drink lemonade and listen to the wonderfulness that is a southern accent. And eat her mother's AMAZING apple pie. And watch The Sound of Music with her dad. Sigh ... that would be the life.

Other traditions for the ladies in the family are to get pedicures and go to the Fashion Gallery ... we did both while I was in town of course. I bought two dresses, a skirt, and a pair of shoes. Who says there isn't good shopping in the country?

Not exactly excited I am taking this picture ... July 2007

I NEVER get my toes painted ... especially not a crazy color ... but aren't they soo pretty?!
This must become a new tradition for me as well!

Clarkson and her family were amazing hosts to me. She even took me by one of the local cemeteries full of beautiful headstones. I enjoyed it immensely of course. Here are just a few shots ... I took many many more.

Sunday, July 15, 2007

shoe store inspirations ... revisted

You may remember this post ... this is where I got the line from.
Isn't it great?!

NYC - Kenneth Cole - Fifth Avenue - March 2006

Saturday, July 14, 2007

I Heart Harry Reid

Senator Harry Reid spoke at BYU's Barlow Center last night. It was pretty good. I like that he is no non-sense and says what he means. You'll remember how excited I was the first time to meet him, so you can only imagine how ecstatic I was to get a picture with him!

In the question and answer portion of the night, someone asked Senator Reid why he was a Democrat ... he responded with the following reasons:
  • Upbringing - his father was affiliated with unionized labor
  • He wants to help people from the bottom up because he does not believe in the "trickle down" theory. Society must be improved and helped from the bottom up.
  • The rich are getting richer and the poor are getting poorer in America - "its not right"
  • He believes in government and that it needs to be improved and not denigrated
I thought it was interesting too that he made some very strong statements against Republicans and in favor of the Democratic Party:
"The economy is always better under Democrats"

"Republicans are more concerned about the rich than they are about the poor"
It was good for me to hear his convictions behind the democratic party. The issues that he mentioned are things that I often find myself turning to when people in the Church make me second guess my political feelings and their alignment with the principles of the gospel (not necessarily on purpose, but just by being themselves). I really liked how he said that there are issues more important that gun control and abortion ... that is definitely how I feel.

The saddest statement he made of the night had to do with how members of the church often treated himself and his family. He said in response to a question on how his religious convictions were received by other politicians or dignitaries, "the most un-Christian and hurtful comments are made by members of the church". Sigh. Very sad. When relaying the details of the night to my father (who is extremely jealous of my interaction with the Honorable Harry Reid) we had to remind each other that the knife cuts both ways ... when we say negative things about Orrin Hatch's politics its just as bad as when conservatives say negative things about Harry Reid's ... its important to not become the very things you are fighting against.

Saturday, July 07, 2007

Reflections and Transparency

Tourist Silhouette

I feel like the photo above needs to stand alone, but I wanted add some words of explanation and some additional photos as well ... so I will try to separate the Tourist photo from the others with words. These were taken on July 2nd when my mother and I visited the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum. The structure itself is very dynamic and provocative. I particularly enjoy the combination of brick, steel, and glass. Very industrial, yet warm and solid. I really like the way this photo came out. I knew it would be good when I was quickly snapping this fellow tourist/photographer before he moved or noticed. Its like self-documentation. I like how the man is a shadowy figure and the glass is simultaneously reflective and translucent. I also like all the different lines, angles and layers that are going on. The photo below also captures those same elements but adds perspective and dimension.


The time of day lent for some interesting lighting on the top floors of the steel and glass walkways. I took the opportunity to take a self-portrait because I was wearing such a brightly colored shirt and the whole window/mirror/reflection-thing in pictures is so trippy. Photographing yourself and you watch yourself doing it. Funny. I wish it wasn't so light and washed out and that some of the shadows were in better places but that's the way it is.

See-through Reflection

The exhibit was also very moving and though provoking, however the summer crowds make the emotionally charged exhibitions difficult. I was much more affected by the exhibition on the bottom floor (the one you didn't have to wait with a ticket for) titled - "Give Me Your Children: Voices from the Lodz Ghetto" which documented the German's invasion of Poland and the life of children in the subsequently created ghettos. This exhibition presents their voices—preserved in letters, diaries, memoirs, and oral histories—as well as historic photographs and original documents. I had to choke back the tears more than once. It is shocking and extremely saddening to see what people can do to each other.

Wednesday, July 04, 2007

Coming to America

In case you can't tell in the terrible picture above - that is Tony Danza. Yes, the Boss from Who's the Boss ... he was the master of ceremonies at the concert on the capitol. This pictures was taken at the run-through given the night before - Tony was charming as ever.

The fourth of July is one of the best holidays for reasons so very accurately pointed out to me by a friend of mine - its a holiday that is celebrated by gathering with friends and loved ones eating BBQ, playing outdoors, talking/laughing ... and it does not require decorating or gift giving. And there are FIREWORKS. I love fireworks. They are soo fun.

Having lived in Utah and now DC/Virginia and away from California for some six years now, its interesting to see just how Country music is so integral to the 4th celebrations. I never knew this growing up in the OC. Ever concert given in UT/DC is heavy on the country music and this year was no different. People I have never heard of were playing twanging music and everyone was just bouncing around lovin it. They did however play a cover to a song I am familiar with - Neil Diamond's America.
Everywhere around the world
They're coming to America
Every time that flag's unfurled
They're coming to America

Got a dream to take them there
They're coming to America
Got a dream they've come to share
They're coming to America
America - Neil Diamond

Me and a few thousand of my closest friends
celebrating the birth of America on the National Mall


Tuesday, July 03, 2007

Sunset Boat, 2006

This was the surprise of the day when I went walking through the National Botanical Garden's public garden.
Who knew there was an original Dale Chihuly there???
Its amazingly beautiful.

Sunday, July 01, 2007

woman math

As I had forewarned, I would be blogging about the latest book on my reading list, Generation Me. This book fully describes my generation (or anyone under 35). Its extremely accurate and that is down right frightening sometimes. Of course, the author Jean Twenge says it best when disputing the Boomer's claim to the title the "Me Generation". While they may have forged the path to making "the self" trendy in the 1970s, "Today's under-35 young people are the real Me Generation, or, as I call them, Generation Me. Born after self-focus entered the cultural mainstream, this generation has never known a world that put duty before self. This book presents, for the first time, the results of twelve studies on generational differences, based on data from 1.3 million young Americans - focusing on the current generation of young people born in the 1970s, 1980s, and 1990s.

One of my favorite quotes from the chapter on "The Age of Anxiety (and Depression , and Loneliness)" is in reference to the phenomenon that GenMe marries later than any other previous generations. This is all, of course, depicted in prime time TV. "Many people think of a single women when they imagine lonely young people ... the enormous wave of anxiety will practically knock you out of your chair. ... Yet there is a grain of truth in the media hype. The deadline for having children - somewhere between 35 and 40 - makes life extremely anxious for many single women. They constantly perform the calculation I call "woman math": "If we get married next year, I'll be 32; we'll want a year or two to be married without kids and it might take a year to get pregnant, so I'll be 34 and 35 before I'm pregnanta nd probably 36 when the child is born. Then if we wait until the first kid is two years old before we try for another one, I'll be trying to get pregnant at 38. Crap."

Ahhh ... I laughed forever when I read this! To see it all out there in black and white and realize ... yup - woman math ... I do that. You know, sometimes I hate how predictable I can be as a woman.

writing on the wall

Parisian Graffiti

Monmarte District in Paris, France