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leaving on a jet plane…

31 Aug

Wow it’s been a long time since I last posted. In the mean time I wrote a 46-page final paper for my summer research project (on the symbolism in natural gas industry media), got my visa (at the last minute!) and filled out about 1,532 pieces of paperwork. Now I’m sitting in DC waiting for my plane to Brazil!

I’m making a new blog for my trip to Brazil. Please check it out at aventurasnosol.wordpress.com.

we heart easy decorating.

9 Dec

Christmas is coming and in my apartment we don’t have a real tree or a fake tree or actually anything amounting to christmas decorations (although we do have some halloween decorations still up if that counts for anything). That’s why I love this post from ReadyMade (a cool DIY magazine/website (for people who live in Seattle, they often give out free subscriptions at Bumbershoot)) with low-cost and low-commitment (for people who might be moving around a lot) ways to decorate.

1. I love the Post-it Christmas tree! Luckily I get to go to home to a real one this year, but you never know, maybe I’ll need one next year.

2. This sweet modern wreath is made from the pages of an old book, but I don’t see why you couldn’t just use newspaper or old wrapping paper for a more colorful look. Tutorial from Living with Lindsay.

3. I love that these hanging decorations are holiday-neutral. Christmas, Hanukkah, Valentines day, whatever. The how-to says to use card stock and grommets, but I would opt for simple colored printer-paper and staples! Tutorial from Curbly.

More ideas from ReadyMade here.

P.S. Did you notice the snow falling on the blog? It’s a wordpress feature until January 4th. Happy holidays!

we heart HOLLABACK.

27 Nov

I just found out about this cool organization, Hollaback. In their own words,

“Hollaback! is a movement dedicated to ending street harassment using mobile technology. Street harassment is one of the most pervasive forms of gender-based violence and one of the least legislated against. Comments from “You’d look good on me” to groping, flashing and assault are a daily, global reality for women and LGBTQ individuals. But it is rarely reported, and it’s culturally accepted as ‘the price you pay’ for being a woman or for being gay. At Hollaback!, we don’t buy it.”

On the site women can post stories of sexual harassment, both success stories of the agressors being called out or turned in to law enforcement, and stories from women who regret being too surprised or intimidated to do anything. I posted my own story about an incident which absolutely PISSES ME OFF whenever I think about it, but I was just too shocked at the time to realize what had happened and to say anything before the opportunity had passed.

I found this site through posts about this viral video of a woman fighting back after being sexually harassed on a subway. This woman is a total inspiration to every woman who has ever been “complimented,” yelled-at, or even groped on the street.

Watch a follow-up interview with the woman here.

we heart thanksgiving.

26 Nov

Another year, another vegetarian turkey substitute. I’ve had the Tofurky roast a few times (and it’s really good) but since I’ve been avoiding soy recently, and I wanted to support a Seattle company, I tried the Field Roast “Stuffed Hazelnut Cranberry Roast.”

It followed the same idea as Tofurkey (meaty exterior with stuffing inside) except this one was wrapped in puff pastry which changed the game a little. Usually when I cook the Tofurkey I sit it in a bed of stuffing to keep it nice and moist, but when I did this with the Field Roast it caused the pastry to come out soggy rather than flaky and nice so next time I’ll cook it alone. However the overall flavor was great.

The best thing about this company (besides the fact that their factory is a 15 minute walk from my high school!) is that I can pronounce, recognize, and feel altogether comfortable with eating everything on the ingredient list. Besides “vital wheat gluten” and “naturally flavored yeast extract” all the ingredients – including cranberries, crystallized ginger, toasted hazelnuts, lemon juice, sea salt, red wine, tomato paste, garlic, rubbed sage, rosemary, and paprika – could conceivably be found in my own kitchen! This is something totally radical, yet consumers should expect it from all the processed foods they buy!

Some of Field Roast's ingredients for their Wild Rice stuffing - figs, cranberries, curry powder, spice mix and barley malt... it all sounds like real food!

So what I mean to say is that I am thankful that there are great people and companies out there trying to make the world a little better and most of all I’m thankful that I have the luxury of being able to worry about the ingredients in my processed foods rather than wondering where I will find my next meal.

Did you have a vegetarian thanksgiving this year? What did you eat?

P.S. Check out Field Roast’s blog… among other things, they talk about how have an all-employee feast every month. Sounds like a great place to work!

we heart beautiful graphics.

6 Nov

Information is Beautiful

My good friend Emily Fletcher showed me this awesome website devoted to displaying information visually and beautifully. It was created by a London author, writer, and designer.  The image above is the cover of the his new book, Information is Beautiful (click the link to find out what the image represents). Below are some of my favorite graphics (click to see more):

Wikipedia Edit Wars

 

The Billion Dollar-O-Gram

And make sure to check out the creator’s TED talk.

favorite blogs #5: Confessions of a Pioneer Woman.

16 Oct

If you know anything about me, you know that the one thing I’ve wanted more than anything else in my life is a horse. Which is why I’m so totally jealous of Ree Drummond, aka the Pioneer Woman, and her kids. Check our her son; he’s the size of a peanut and already knows how to saddle a horse!

Ree’s story is really interesting, and I won’t go into detail here, but she was a city girl who married a cowboy and now lives on a ranch in Oklahoma (she’s compiled the full story on her blog, and apparently there are plans to make it into a movie). She covers basically everything on her site: cooking, photography (including a great set of free Photoshop actions), home & garden design, homeschooling (which she does with her kids) as well as her “confessions” blog which covers day-to-day stuff, but is always interesting and funny. She was another inspiration to me; she began with a simple blog to help her keep in touch with her family which became so popular that she has now published a cookbook and appeared on several morning talk shows. So she’s basically amazing.

To close, here’s a pic of her kids riding across the open range. So jealous!

favorite blog #4: A Cup of Jo.

12 Oct

A Cup of Jo Screenshot

A Cup of Jo is one of my favorite blogs, and probably the one from which I draw the most inspiration. Author Joanna Goddard writes intimately, as if she’s speaking to room full of close friends, and has an eye for the cutest things, from wedding dresses to home decor. She recently had her first baby and damn is he cute. It sounds pretty sappy, but I really can’t resist pics of cute babies. Can you?

favorite blogs #3: Missed Connections.

6 Oct

At one point or another we’ve all looked at the “missed connections” in the newspaper or on craigslist – people hoping to reconnect with a stranger that caught their eye on a bus or rang them up at the grocery store – and wondered, “Do these ever work?” Artist Sophie Blackwell took these cultural curiosities and turned them into art. Sifting through New York city missed connections, she finds some cute, some funny, some downright strange, and paints them into adorable watercolors, coming out with a new one every few weeks. Her subject matter has proved so compelling that a movie has even been made about the blog. The best part is you can buy prints on her Etsy store for a very reasonable price.

Here’s one of my favorites:

favorite blogs #2: Kitsune Noir.

5 Oct

Kitsune Noir

Kitsune Noir is “an international art and design blog that dabbles in music, movies, food and fashion.” Basically the perfect place to kill a few hours ogling at all the awesomely beautiful and creative stuff that creator Bobby Soloman and his friends manage to dig up from around the internet… making me wish I’d majored in graphic design. It’s also a great place to find music; Bobby blogged about Beat Connection before I knew anyone outside of Seattle had heard of them. +65 hip points.

Some recent gems: a behind-the-scenes look at a beautiful British TV ad for… of all things, a color printer! And inventive photography for a new Ikea cookbook.

And don’t forget to check out The Desktop Wallpaper Project, a collection of wallpapers by some very cool artists. Download some of these onto your Macbook Pro or iPhone and you will officially be the hippest kid on the block.

favorite blogs #1: Re-educate Seattle

3 Oct

Re-Educate Seattle

Steve Miranda was the advisor of our high school newspaper and one of my favorite teachers – He was one of those teachers that actually made you feel like a real person. He’s now moved on from my big inner-city public high school to a small independent school which sounds totally amazing. His blog, over the year that I’ve been reading it, has completely changed my outlook on our current education system. It’s not just for Seattelites, and it’s certainly not just for teachers; anyone who has been through the mainstream education system can relate. His writing is really enjoyable to read, always direct, honest, and from the heart. Way to go, Miranda.

P.S. This week I’ll be doing a series of my favorite blogs.