Sunday, February 28, 2010

Artsy me


I had a very artsy weekend and thoroughly enjoyed doing what I love. I don't get to paint, draw, and make things nearly as often as I would like, but this weekend was a good start. A friend and I spent most of Sunday making collages. Here are pictures of my two almost-finished projects. I just need to add a little something more....not quite satisfied with either one. The Guatemalan collage is 18x24 so it will fit in a standard poster frame and the flowers fit in a cork-board frame I already had. There's a lot of little detail in the Guatemalan one that you can't see from just the picture...parts of it are 3D with jewels and glitter embellishments. So much fun to create!

Friday, February 26, 2010

The Real Deal

video

This is just too great to keep to myself....introducing to the world for the first time ever.....Fireplace Ski Jump! Notice the goggles?? Just incase the weather turns ugly.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Mountains, snow, shopping, syrup and no moose






Vermont....what a weekend! I think I drank more water than normal this weekend because my mouth was gaping open the entire time from the breathtaking scenery. I spent the weekend looking for moose and skiing Stratton and Bromley mountains in Southern Vermont. Not so successful with the moose part, but I enjoyed skiing and my legs are certainly letting me know that I'm only getting older each winter! So, a little play-by-play of the weekend:

Day 1 - Friday - 9 hour car ride from DC to Londenderry, VT. Andrew was my traveling companion this weekend - I provided the car to get there and he provided his family's home 10 minutes from the mountains :) Very nice deal - he saw his family/I skied/he snowboarded/I shopped/he shopped/I got to check another state off my travel list/neither one of us had to spend 9 hours in a car alone/and we both had a ton of fun in the process!

Day 2 - Saturday - skied/boarded from 9am until 3pm! Whew! Stratton is a gorgeous ski resort (www.stratton.com) and the mountain incredible! It was crowded but the slopes didn't seem like it at all because there are so many trails and the runs are very wide. The top of the mountain was brutally cold and windy....we skiied some at the top, ate lunch at a mid-mountain lodge, and skied some on the bottom half of the mountain. One of the coolest things at Stratton was the "starting gates" for the chairlifts. Every lift had what looked like horse racing gates where the skiers/boarders would go through the line and when it was your turn to get on the chairlift, you skied into a little pen and just before the chair swung around, the gate opened and each person glided into the path of the chair to sit. If the chairlift was a quad there were 4 gate pens, a 6 person high speed lift had 6 gate pens, etc. It was so cool! After our legs gave out from a long day on the mountain, we went shopping in Manchester at some amazing outlet stores!!! J. Crew, GAP, Burberry, Coach, Ann Taylor, Factory Brand Shoes, Banana Republic, etc....never seen such low prices at these stores!

Day 3 - Sunday - Back out on the slopes but this time at Bromley Mountain (www.bromley.com). Another beautiful mountain for skiing with a much different feel than Stratton. Bromley is the "local" mountain...no fancy village or chairlift starting gates, but nice people and nicely groomed slopes. It was a perfect choice to take it easy and enjoy a leisurely afternoon on the mountain....and again, let our legs rest just a bit! Ha! We shopped in the morning, so by the time we arrived at Bromley, the morning crowd of skiers was thinning and we didn't have to wait in lines much.

Day 4 - Monday - Another exciting day in the car for 9 hours! Oh, but we did manage to stop for some shopping on the way out of town :)

So, it was a great weekend with awesome skiing and fun memories. I was sad that I didn't see a moose, but bringing home real Vermont maple syrup quickly replaced my disappointment!

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Olympic Glory

I haven't posted in a while for a couple reasons - 1) I went home for 3 days which actually turned into 4 days given the gobs of snow that decended on Central Ohio, so I was enjoying family, friends, and snow and thus not interested in spending time online; and 2) the olympics are on tv now and I am thoroughly addicted to them. Winter olympics are so much better than summer ones....how can people running around in a circle or trying to jump over a pit of sand possibly come close to the excitement of skiers and snowboarders flying through the air?? No comparison, so I have been glued to the tv every evening (my normal blogging time) hanging onto every trick, jump and race technique in an attempt to improve my own skiing ability and qualify for the 2014 games....at least, in my dreams :)

Headed to Vermont to ski this weekend, so stay tuned for new pictures to come.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Parade of Snowmen



Another productive snow day in DC! Finally the sun came out to melt the snow just enough that is became awesome packing snow, and that was my cue to head outside and take advantage of it. I spent about 40 minutes making a giant snowman that stands as tall as me, and then had fun dressing it up. I even put a Hogar t-shirt on it to send to my kiddies in Guatemala :)

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

The Magnificent Magnolia Rescue



Mary and I went for a walk yesterday to retrieve her cell phone left at work last week and along the way we saw all these beautiful Magnolia trees snapped to pieces from the heavy snow. If you've never smelled raw bark from Magnolia branches, you're really missing something special! The aroma is a delicious sweet, tropical kind that makes you want to stick the branch up your nose to smell all the time....however, I don't recommend you actually do that as it might cause some nasty scratches.

Anyways, Mary said she knew how to force blooms, so instead of leaving the budding branches to rot in the snow, we picked some of the strong ones with multiple buds and brought them back condition them and start forcing blooms. For those of you who don't know how to do that (I was one of them as of yesterday), you take a hammer and smash open the stem to allow for lots of water absorption, peel off some of the leaves so that the blooms get most of the water, and then stick the stems in a vase of water in a sunny, warm place and wait for flowers! I'll keep you posted on the Magnolia progress :)

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

More snow pics



Hide and Seek in Lincoln park

Me and Mary - my DC neighbor/mom....amazing to think that my Heavenly Mother's name is Mary, my DC mom is Mary, my Guatemalan mom is Maria (Spanish for Mary), and my true mom in Ohio is Mary!!
Another day of snow = another day of adventure! I have had so much fun with this blizzard in DC getting to know my apartment building neighbors. It's incredible how friendly people become when there's 30" of snow on the ground! My apartment has become the college dorm I never experienced when I was actually in college - we just leave our doors open and come and go eating, hanging out, playing games, swapping movies, etc. I love it! Everyone in the building is off work (I'm working from home for lack of being able to see my car), so we go on walking adventures during the day to laugh at all the idiots trying to drive their little cars in the snow who end up stuck, those trying to clear their buried cars using a small ice scraper, and women with bricks for brains wobbling in their stiletto heels on the snow-covered sidewalks! It's great!! Who knew just how wrong all the taxi drivers would be back in September when they told me DC doesn't get snow?!

Monday, February 8, 2010

I need a garage!

This is the current fate of my car after round 1 of "Snowmageddan" and I just saw on the news round 2 will arrive around 1pm tomorrow. My street has not been touched by a snowplow, so you can see just how deep the snow really is! If round 2 hits like they are predicting, there will be 12" of new snow come Wednesday morning. I'm thinking tomorrow would be a good day to get my skis out :)

Sometimes you just gotta make do!

Woke up this morning to bright sunshine and glistening snow, so my neighbor Mary and I walked to the grocery store to purchase food for a convent of nuns on our block. However, we shopped without thinking about the fact that we walked! So, Mary had the brilliant idea of making our own sled from a produce box and several plastic produce bags tied together. It was fabulous and only caused 1 broken egg :)

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Snowpocalypse!





Snow has paralyzed DC once again this winter and I'm enjoying it just as much as before! For some reason the snow always comes on the weekend, which in any other city would be horrible because no doubt the streets would be clear by Monday, but thank goodness DC is clueless when it comes to snow removal, so I'm anticipating no work until at least Wednesday :) Prime example: Friday morning I'm driving to work at 9am - not a single snow flake in sight - and I pass a large road sign that says: WASHINGTON DC STATE OF EMERGENCY BEGINNING 9:30AM. What kind of place declares a state of emergency before it happens??? Craziness but I love it and I'm having a blast hanging out with my apartment neighbors. We hung out last night and went through 2 bottles of wine....this blizzard may turn ugly if we have to ration it. Ha! I woke up at 4am this morning to check on the snow progress and was so excited to see we actually got what was forecasted that I couldn't go back to sleep until 5:30am. I went outside at 10am and tried to make a snow-dinosaur but the packing snow was under about 6" of powder, so I ended up making a snow-turtle and then it snowed some more and turned my turtle into a manatee blob! I also made a fleet of snow-angels, but I have yet to figure out how I actually get up without putting a boot print in the angels stomach!

Okay, well back to playing in the snow :) More pics to come!

Friday, February 5, 2010

Gourmet Pepper


I'm going to start out by saying vegetables are yucky and I don't like them. However, roasted vegetables are another story! I've never roasted vegetables before, but I also never had a gas stove, so this was an attempt at roasting a green pepper inside on my stove and it turned out really delicious! I was so surprised and now I'm excited to roast other veggies....I'm thinking corn on the cob, red peppers, and onions would all be delicious. The pepper looked ugly by the end, and I cleaned up ashes in my kitchen for 2 days, but it was worth it :)

Tuesday, February 2, 2010

Now I've seen it all!

Supposedly when it comes to jobs, if you do what you like, then you'll like what you do. True? Maybe for most people, but I can't imagine it NOT being true for this job posting...and yes, this is a real job posting on a reputable career site!

Lego Specialist
Education: High school and 2 years college
Location: Brooklyn, New York, 11212, United States
Posted by: YWCA of the City of New York
Type: Full time
Language(s): English
Job posted on: Feb 1
Area of Focus: Media and Journalism

Job Requirements:
•High school diploma, plus two years of college
•Experience working with youth
•Excellent communication skills; written and verbal
•Strong capabilities in math, reading, and other general academic studies
•Understanding of principals of effective youth development strategies
•Classroom management skills
•Experience working with Lego’s
Sector: Nonprofit
Last day to apply: Apr 2
Last updated: Feb 1


As a former Lego enthusiast myself, I am left speechless at the idea that someone will get paid to play with Lego's all day --- no, I take that back, work with Lego's all day (notice the last job requirement posted). Growing up with an older brother who received Legos for Christmas, birthday, Easter, and everyday in between, I of course had to have my own Lego sets, so I collected the pink ones :) No surprise, huh?? Pastel pink, green, yellow with little bunches of flowers to decorate outside my Lego homes.


I'm halfway tempted to apply for this job...I mean how cool would it be to first of all have the title of "Lego Specialist", but secondly, I would make my business cards out of Legos :)

Monday, February 1, 2010

My poor golf club :(

This used to be my beautiful 3 wood golf club. So sad. I went to the driving range on Sunday with a full set of clubs and returned home one less. The head is laying in the middle of the driving range buried in snow - came clear off when I hit the golf ball! I guess on the upside, my swing is improving :)

February 1st already

Can you believe that we are only 10 months and 25 days away from Christmas? February 1st really snuck up on me. January was packed with a whole lot of fun - New Year's at home, trip to Guatemala, getting the ol' golf clubs back out, seeing more sights in DC, a new haircut (still in debate although I've been told it's not as bad as I think it is).....yep, January went by quickly. And now February is here which means Groundhog day tomorrow, the start of Lent, a work holiday for President's Day, hopefully a lot more golfing, and a ski trip to Vermont. Good things in store, so happy February to all!

Introducing....

...my new best friend! Ta da! This weekend my washer/dryer unit was delivered AND installed. What a beautiful addition to my apartment...and my life in general. After weeks of careful research into brands, stores, and prices, and measuring my available space multiple times, I decided on a Frigidaire model that as you can see is slightly too large to fit normally in my laundry closet space, so I had to turn it sideways. But, the price difference between the thin model and the one I chose was around $400 and for that savings, I decided I could do laundry standing sideways just fine! Isn't it beautiful?? I did two loads of laundry the first day it arrived and I feel like washing every piece of clothing I own just because I can :)