Monday, February 28, 2011

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

I'd like to grow herbs.

I am fascinated by plants but I've never been successful at growing them myself.  I would've had a fabulous tomato plant in the summer of 2009 had the stem not snapped almost in half on the way home from potting it at a friend's house.  See, I didn't even know how to pot it myself, so I made sure to get help because I really wanted to succeed.  Then it tipped over on the way home and hit the dashboard, almost severing the stem.  It was still a little bit attached though, so I wrapped some embroidery thread around it and a colored pencil, to help it stay together, and put it out on the balcony.  It proceeded to grow into the tallest tomato plant I or my gardening expert friend had ever seen, so I had high hopes, but it produced probably a total of three green (and almost immediately rotten) tomatoes.  I'm not sure what all went down there, but I'm thinking it had something to do with the handicapped stem.

So anyway, there have been a plant or two I've been successful at keeping alive (I count that one even though it was hobbled) but overall I don't do well.  I'm apparently good at succulents because the two little ones sitting on my kitchen windowsill are trying very hard to grow out of the tiny pots there in, but I don't want them to because I wanted small succulents, not big ones.  One of them doesn't even have any roots, it was just the top of a plant set in a coffee cup, and it's growing!  I don't know how that works, but whatever...

I had a basil plant last summer that died almost immediately.  I had it out on my balcony here in Oakland.  I'm not sure what happened.  The lady at the plant store (nursery?  see, I'm not even good at the lingo) said it would love the balcony, but it hated it.  I'm not sure what I did wrong.  But I'm determined to try again.

So does anybody have any herb growing tips?  I'm going to put them out on a table behind our kitchen in this little alleyway we have between us and the next building.  I'm hoping that's enough sunlight.  I figure they'll get good sun for at least a couple hours a day, when the sun is directly overhead.  Most of the time they'll be in the shade, though.  I guess my other option would be to line them up in front of the house, but that's farther from the kitchen, and it seems convenient for them to be close.  We do have a currently unused planter out there though...hmmmm.

*thoughts percolating*

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Valentine's Day

(apologies for the bad quality pictures - my cell phone is not the best)

Surprise gondola ride on Lake Merritt, complete with singing Italian gondolier dressed in requisite striped shirt?
Dinner at the Lake Chalet afterwards, starting with fancy cocktails and ending with fancy desserts?

Cute ring on Valentine's morning, along with card (not pictured) that made me cry twice?

Roses delivered to work?


Best boyfriend ever?
Check and check.

Monday, February 14, 2011

I'm on a ROLL!


I'm going to try for another one!

On this lovely blog here:

there is a giveaway for that very cute skirt in the picture. 
*crossing my fingers*

:)  :)  :)

Monday, February 7, 2011


This blog I read has what looks like an awesome giveaway going:

I've just started thinking I need to do something about my skin because it is not pretty right now.  Perfect timing!  I hope I win, so...I'm telling you guys about it so I get an extra entry, but you really shouldn't enter.  Really.  :P

Friday, February 4, 2011

Letter to a friend

Dear Kris,

I want to make sure I say all the things I want to say to you before you're gone.  It's scary to actually write that you're going to be gone.  Nobody likes to say it out loud.  Or...write it, as the case is here.  We think by saying it, we'll make it true.  I know you and your family have tried so hard to stay positive throughout this whole thing but after a while you did start to admit that it was a possibility things wouldn't work out.  Somehow you still managed to keep most of your positive energy even after that realization.  I can't say enough how much you have amazed me and impressed me since you got diagnosed.

Well, it really started way before that, actually.  I'm sure everyone who knows you thinks that way.  You have been impressing people your entire life, from the comments I've read on your blog.  As for me, I just want to let you know how much you truly have meant to me.  I know I'm not one of the most important people in your life - I'm not a family member or a really close friend - but you have left a mark on me.

You were my favorite person to work with at Fraser.  I loved that you also thought that we had a connection and we just naturally understood each other.  So often I feel like I have those feelings toward someone and they're not reciprocated (or at least verbalized).  It felt so good every time you said we were in sync.  I've never really had a supervisor-type person take me under their wing the way you did, and support me the way you did.  You understood and supported me at a place where I didn't always feel understood or supported by other people, and I didn't always fit very well into the job I had.  You let me know that I had value when I wasn't sure I did.

You helped me grow up and trust myself more.  I became more confident in my work because of your reassurance.  It hasn't often been my experience that someone I think is super cool, someone I look up to and admire, also thinks I'm cool and wants to talk to me or spend time with me.  You make everyone around you feel good with the way you talk to them, your energy, positivity, determination, wisdom and caring.  No wonder so many people read your blog or have reached out to help you and your family.

It sucks that this is happening to you.  It seems like it always happens to the most wrong people.  It's never someone people think is a jerk, it's always the most wonderful people with the most to live for.  Or maybe those are just the ones we remember because it sticks out as such an awful contrast - for this horrible thing to happen to someone so great. 

I wish I could be there right now to at least come see you but I just happened to buy a plane ticket to MN last night for April 17th.  It'd be great if I could see you then but I also don't want you to spend a lot of time in horrible pain.  I guess we'll just have to wait and see.

I mostly just wanted to make sure I at least tried to find the words to say what an impression you've made on me, and that I'm going to miss you.  You'll never be forgotten.  If we get to talk again that'll be great but I wanted to make sure I got this all said, just in case.  I can't believe this is actually happening and I'm trying to wrap my brain around it but it's really hard.  I can't imagine what it's like for you and your family.

I'm very grateful I have gotten to count you as a friend, and know you count me as one too.

Love always,

Thursday, February 3, 2011

This apartment is so eclectic

These pictures were found here.
I love the plants inside the table, I love the floors and I love how big the room is. I love that there's so much random stuff, but it all goes together somehow.

I would never gravitate toward this hippo myself, if I saw it in a store, but it's actually very cool.  It's so unique.  I love how the art goes with it.  I keep thinking I want to open up my eyes and tastes to items I wouldn't normally choose because I think that's what's going to enliven my surroundings.  My rooms always end up looking the same.

This makes me feel better about my cluttered bookshelf.  Although mine doesn't look quite this cool. 

So pretty.

I want that wall of shoes...
I've only recently gotten my first two shoe racks (with my long term love of shoes and the amount I have, Mark was like, "you've never had a shoe rack before??")

So want.  WANT.  It's like my dream jewelry drawer.  To have a jewelry drawer in the first place...

I love that she loves her dog so much she got a bronze sculpture made of him.  They have a Lego one too, in another room, but I am not as into Legos as I am into bronze, so I didn't include that picture.

She commented in the original post that this dish is one of the most practical things she's ever been given.  They really are - I have several little dishes/containers, a few of which I made myself and a few I have bought at random pottery sales.  They're the kind of thing that seems like useless clutter, but they really are lovely for collecting little items that would otherwise just lay around in the way.

I hope I don't get in trouble by posting pictures from around the internet.  I feel like if I credit where I'm getting them from, no biggie, right?  I wonder what the real rules for that are...

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

I'm in love, and a bit sad at the same time

I think my font ends up being slightly varying shades of purple...

Anyway, I just tweeted something I had more thoughts about, so I thought I would write a blog entry.  I don't have any pictures although I wish I did, but I just don't think they would turn out very well.  I'd be taking a picture of the inside of a mug, and my camera is not that good.  I wonder if Mark's iPhone...ah, well.  I don't have the energy or the motivation to go to all that trouble right now.  I just wanted to get these thoughts out.

So, I've been having some stomach troubles lately and tonight Mark suggested something his mom used to make for him.  He said she had a mint plant out in the backyard, and she would just grab some leaves, throw them in the bottom of a mug, pour boiling water over it, and have mint tea.  I mean, duh, right?  He said she would put a spoonful of sugar (makes the medicine go down, oh man, now that's gonna be stuck in my head all night) in it so it wasn't overwhelmingly minty.

It's sad that this is such a revelatory discovery for me.  I mean, I never would've thought of doing that.  It's a very obvious, simple thing to do, but this just shows how far removed I am from the origins of things.  That was part of my tweet.  I don't even put mint and mint together to make tea.

Although I did, because it just so happens that I bought some organic mint leaves (in those little plastic boxes in the produce section, you know?) at Safeway yesterday.  We never have mint in the house but we do right now.  So I did it.  And it's wonderful.

I put a teaspoon of honey in mine.  :)

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

I can't help myself

So, through this lady:
I have been enlightened to the island of Langkawi.  It's in her latest post, about her island retreat.  I had no idea it existed and since I'm always getting ahead of myself, I'm always trying to think of things that I'd like to have for my wedding. 

This looks like the perfect honeymoon spot.
Of course, last week I wanted to go to southern Italy. 

Maybe I should just make us quit our jobs and travel around the world for a year?  I'm sure anywhere I end up going on my honeymoon is going to be wonderful though.
Anyway.  Even if it's not for a honeymoon, I just want to go.

Here's another article about it:
I'm sure since I'm hearing about it, it's becoming more popular and will soon be ruined because I'm not cool enough to know about things when they're still diamonds in the rough, undiscovered gems.  I sure hope it's still wonderful by the time I have the means to get there though.

 All these pictures were just found by doing a Google search so I'm not going to credit them all.  Anyone else could easily find them if they Google "Langkawi" or "southern Italy."  Turns out that picture of Italy is Positano.  Who knew that was a town?  Remember the lyric from "Cinema Italiano" in Nine, where Kate Hudson sings, "women in Positano!"  I always thought she was singing about a designer.
Maybe it's a designer too, who knows.

And yes, it's possible that I had decided I wanted to go to southern Italy because I was watching Nine.  What of it.