Saturday, January 29, 2011

A Million Miles in a Thousand Years


A most appropriate book for me to read; it couldn't have come at a better time. Thanks, Donald Miller! (And a special thanks to Jana for bringing it all the way from the US!)

Read more about it on Amazon right here.

Thursday, January 27, 2011

galen's virtual birthday present

exactly one month ago, my pretty-much awesome brother, galen, turned 27. if i remember correctly, my sister, my mom, and i went together to get help get him some computer-thing. he probably liked it well enough. however, i know he would have REALLY liked this.


hope he doesn't mind a bit of good-natured, sisterly teasing. i can see it now . . .

galen's new favorite tow-behind vehicle:

perfect place to keep the cats when they're being too rowdy!

galen's new favorite thing to do with friends:

earthroamer rallies!

galen's new favorite place to go hunting:

anywhere! (click here to see some more 'roamer action shots.)

galen's new favorite feature:

big fridge for lots of bevvies!

and if anyone knows galen, his new, number one, can't-live-without favorite feature: a rig with a fresh water capacity of 117 gallons, including 13 gallons of 100 degree water. no need to worry--he can still take suuuuper long showers while he's on (or off) the road!

man--he really would have a lot of good fun with this get-up. too bad the price-tag is a bit hefty and i don't think any amount of perfectnessforgalenness is going to get me a sale. i'd probably have to work in abu dhabi for the next 50 years just to pay it off.
virtual gifting will have to do.

happy belated birthday!
love you!

Tuesday, January 18, 2011


New favorite place to jog.
(Now that it's cooled down a bit, the Corniche is the perfect place to be.)

image from Frolic
New favorite dress.
(Wish that it I could find a more colorful version in the stores around here.)

New favorite breakfast.
(I adore berries.)

New favorite photo.
(Aside from the overly orange hue, I love this picture and her little attitude.)

New favorite toy.
(This is the first picture I took with my new camera remote. Pretty fun.)

New favorite blog.
(Amazing photographers. Captivating writers.)


Sunday, January 16, 2011

Subject: wawa

Even though you may not be "friends" with people on Facebook, there is still the option to write someone a personal message.

This lovely little piece of spam made its way into my in-box the other day . . .

Definitely annoying, but also a little funny when you consider that this . . .

. . . my profile pic, was the only thing "Mr. Emirates" could see.

He he!

Friday, January 14, 2011

Statistical Superstar!

I'm not sure how much reading I'll get to this year, but since I've already managed to read one book, I'm basically a statistical superstar.

image originally seen on sacred lotus

Yep. According to some studies by Para Publishing, it doesn't take much to be a hot rod reader:
  • 1/3 of high school graduates never read another book for the rest of their lives.
  • 42 percent of college graduates never read another book after college.
  • 80 percent of U.S. families did not buy or read a book last year.
  • 70 percent of U.S. adults have not been in a bookstore in the last five years.
  • 57 percent of new books are not read to completion.
Calling all readers!

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Book Log

During my freshman year of high school, my favorite English teacher gave me a valuable bit of advice: keep a book log. Until halfway through college, I relied on the ol' 3x5 notecard to keep tabs on my reading. Then, after jumping on the Facebook bandwagon, I transferred my Book Log to the "Social Living: Books" page. Unfortunately, during all the recent revisions and facelifts, my Facebook Book Log has somehow disappeared. I've decided to start over and use the blog as a way to record what I've been reading.

Here's my first completed book of 2011!

Stones into Schools by Greg Mortensen

Happy Reading!

P.S. I'm not really into writing reviews. (Probably because I don't like reading book reviews.)

Monday, January 10, 2011

Friday, January 7, 2011

New Songs for the New.New.New Year

Since the post-holiday season can be notoriously drab and dreary in the PNW, Jill and I (well, Jill, really) started a special little music ritual to keep the good times rolling right into January. For the past couple of years, I've been the lucky recipient of a little sampling of fun tunes we like to call "New Songs for the New Year". They've been the perfect antidote to the winter blues.

image also by pilliebee

Here are my top of the top hits from the first two albums:
Tinfoil Hats by Rocky Votolato from New Songs for the New Year. (Jan. 2009)
Lasso the Moon by Kelli Schaefer from New Songs for the New.New Year. (Jan. 2010)

This year we're both submitting songs for the New Songs for the New.New.New Year mix. (6 songs each; 12 songs total; 1 song for each month. woot!) Here are my selections for the 2011 compilation.

Where the Road Meets the Sun by Katie Herzig and Matthew Perryman Jones

Nothing But the Whole Wide World by Jakob Dylan & Neko Case

Awake My Soul
by Mumford & Sons

I Was Made for Sunny Days by the Weepies

Ballade du Mois de Juin by Benjamin Biolay & Chiara Mastroianni

And my personal favorite: To Be Surprised by Sondre Lerche

[To have a listen, just click on the name of each song. And you really should listen to at least ONE song--because all that linking took me a really long time.]

The songs in the previous albums have been so good that I'm feeling a little bit of pressure --I want these guys to be winners, too. Hope they don't disappoint!

Wednesday, January 5, 2011

goals pt. 3

all images from Environmental Graffiti

doesn't this moss graffiti stuff look like fun? i think it just might have to make its way onto the resolution list, too.

if you're feeling so inclined, here's few recipes for whipping up your own batch:
How to Make Moss Graffiti
Moss Graffiti


Tuesday, January 4, 2011

goals. pt. 2

After much deliberation, here are my 3 "official" resolutions for the New Year*!

1. pay off my student loans

I'm so very excited to tell you that I just made good progress on this one! My Federal Stafford Loan is FINISHED! Only one more loan to go . . .

2. get a new job
Working on it. Sorta.

3. email friends and family on a consistent basis; respond to emails in a timely fashion
Not sure how to break this one down into realistically do-able bits. It's also a little tricky because it must be maintained; not just one of those things that can be crossed off the list when accomplished. Plus, the more you write, the more people write you back. Which--even though that's the whole reason to email in the first place--the idea of the exponential Inbox makes it a bit overwhelming. Anyone have a correspondence system that works for them?

ready. steady. GO!

*I really like capitalizing New Year. I think it makes it more special.

Sunday, January 2, 2011

looking forward to a . . .

. . . berry good new year with some berry good changes in store.

while on break, jill, caitlin, and i talked a fair bit about what we want to do differently in 2011. my list is by no means complete. here are a few of the (many) things that could use some improvement. it would be berry good to . . .
  • respond to emails (unfortunately it's pretty common for me to take 9 months to get back to someone. boo.)
  • pay off my student loans
  • organize my computer desktop and files
  • write my grandparents letters and emails; call them on the phone (i miss them!)
  • NOT allow myself to amass heaps of uncorrected papers
  • run a marathon (maybe a half marathon. or do a triathlon.)
  • get a new job (my contract in the UAE is up this summer. i think i'm ready for a new adventure.)
  • upload my photos onto facebook (i've got 14 months and 7 countries worth of pics to post!)
  • plan for the upcoming school semester; plan for each school week
  • dig deeper into friendships (i've been a very bad friend his year)
  • read more books (in general)
  • read A Million Miles by Don Miller, Surprised by Hope by N.T. Wright, Women, Food, and God by Geneen Roth, and more of the Bible (specifically)
  • trim back my google reader and keep only the blogs that i really like (thanks, caitlin for pointing out i have over 1000 posts to read!)
  • eat more vegetables and drink more water (always)
  • travel. (maybe prince edward island. or the seychelles. or new zealand. or china.)
  • bike through a country. (maybe spain. or the ukraine.)
  • be more loving, affirming, and patient with my girls
  • finish blogging about my trips to thailand, egypt, nepal, and the PNW. start blogging about azerbaijan, turkey, india, and jordan.
  • save more money. (maybe for the beginnings of graduate school. maybe for the beginnings of a down payment.)
  • cook more often
  • be better about letting people know they're appreciated
  • follow through on my commitments
  • lose some weight
  • be more balanced in how i spend my time, money, and energy
  • do more yoga
  • keep things simple. (he he!)
i'm still strategizing. i want my goals to be obtainable, helpful, worth the work, and--well, berry focused.

stay tuned . . .