"I can go the distance," said Herc.

"I can go the distance," said Herc.

Friday, December 30, 2011

What Are You Doing New Year's Eve?

I found this video on Facebook and had to share:

Thursday, December 22, 2011

The Help

Angst, angst, angst.

I guess a lot of it comes from sitting at the kitchen table, alone, in my apartment for the last three hours. I'm doing the alone at Christmas break thing again, only I haven't gone crazy yet. I guess it's because I have the anticipation of going to work in a few hours. Pretty much half the things I had down to accomplish today haven't happened yet: clean, write, draw, and play guitar with my super long nails that are bound to break soon. Truly, I was going to do these things. But, I had something more important to do.

I finished reading The Help.

"This could be one of the most important
pieces of fiction since 'To Kill a Mockingbird'
...If you read only one book... let this be it."
And holy cow, if you've been living under a rock for the last year then you need to pull your head out and stare at the sun, because it's about the same shade of yellow as the cover of that book. Out here in Utah, hardly anyone thinks about segregation between black and white people anymore because it's not a huge issue. At least, from what I've seen. Down in the South, however, I've heard it's still prevalent, and that makes me sad. I wish people here would talk about it more, though. Growing up we always colored Dr. Martin Luther King Jr.'s picture in school the Friday before the third Monday in January, when us kids rejoiced because we got school off. I hardly think more than a handful of people in my hometown really took the time to sit down and think about why the day is so important. In fact, I didn't even know the third Monday of January was officially named Civil Rights Day until I took AP US History in high school. I remember thinking it made sense at the time I learned that, but knowing made little difference.

Now before I go give myself a bad rep for implying I never cared about civil rights growing up, I will say that is not true. I was taught the importance of civil rights to our nation's history in school. I cared then, and care even more as I mature. But, as we all know, the biggest problems now are de facto. That is primarily what The Help concentrates on, and is why everyone needs to read it. You will stop and think, and wonder, where you fall on this spectrum. And I'm not talking about just black vs. white anymore, but all races, cultures, and lifestyles. If you can get past that, you'll have no trouble enjoying the other elements of the book. It's hilarious, tear jerking, clever, straight laced, and so full of Southern voice that I feel like I've picked up a Mississippi accent. Also, I have never read a more satisfying conclusion.

I will always count The Help as one of my most favorite book/movies. I saw the movie in September, and now that I've read the book I can see where they changed a number of things, but they did it tastefully and held to the flavor of the novel.

So, this winter break, as you settle back and digest a wonderful meal and snack on too many sweets, I recommend you pick up a copy of The Help. 

Friday, December 9, 2011

Only six more days! Ah!!!


That is just about the measure of my psyche right now: stressed and mushy. Sometimes I'm so sick of writing that I just want to lay my head on the ground and pound it to the beat of David Bowie and Queen's "Pressure." This video is from a great movie called "It's Kind of a Funny Story." Now that I think about it, I wish I could do what the main character does: check myself into a psych ward for a little R&R because I'm so stressed out. Anyhow, the video is of them doing the song "Under Pressure." Same musical talents, just different people I hope you like it.

Not that I really need to go to a psych ward, but the idea of going to a place where they make you sit and not be freaked out sounds pretty appealing.

So now I'm sitting here, in the Hub, watching this cute guy across the table from me do his math homework (He claims he loves to do it.). I was hoping he wouldn't ask what I'm doing (He did), because at the moment it's supposed to be homework of some sort. But, I needed to just relax and do something not school-related. The solution? Blogging. It may not be homework, but hey at least I am WRITING.

I have this great idea for a post that I can't wait to write. Sadly, I don't think I'll get around to it until after finals. It's about shoes. That's all I'll give ya, but be ready!

Ah... I feel so much better now. Definitely less stressed. Of course, there's still the four pages of writing and six pages of scanning images for that research paper due Friday... and my final draft of my article to do... but for now I think I just need to sit back and think of happier things. Like, after finals week. Which ends next Wednesday for me. Yay!

...Well I wrote all that Tuesday night. Now, it's after midnight, and I'm in the library trying to finish my research paper on the Gothic Revival. I just want to lay my head down on the table and bang it. One. More. Page. One. More. Page.


One more page. I can do this. On a side note, Pinterest is hilarious.

Thursday, November 10, 2011

On Fashion and Head Sweaters

I love studying the fashion trends at USU from year to year. It seems that no matter how much we try to distinguish ourselves as individuals, we always look like someone else. Take the boho movement, for instance. It came out several years ago as unique, fun, carefree and somehow trendy, when the low-radar small shops hidden by the shadow of Macey's and Nordstrom were already heartily promoting it. Go to any craft fair and you would have seen tents run by washed out hippies selling tie-dye and braided hemp necklaces.

This year there is a clone army of really cute, nice girls who think they are different from everyone else--bless their hearts. They all wear their hair down and wavy, have dark (preferably black) trench coats that go to a little lower than mid-waist, several layered tops, a scarf peaking out, skinny jeans or a skirt, some leg warmers or long socks that poke out just higher than the mid-calf boots to complete the ensemble. Often they sport a side bag instead of a backpack. I just saw like, 5 walk by me as I just wrote all this in the library.

I'm not saying these fashions are not cute, or that I wouldn't wear them. Several of these girls are actually good friends of mine. I am simply pointing out that we're kidding ourselves if we think we stick it to the man when it comes to style.

And another thought on style--a girl (most likely a business major from the sound of it) wrote to the Statesman the other day trashing, of all things, the wide knitted headbands girls wear (they think that just because they bought it from a friend's mom who has a new business that it's unique, too). She called them, to my high amusement, "head sweaters." Yeah, I think think they're weird and definitely not unique, but these girls like them and they complete their outfits, so who cares? Apparently she does. At first I thought she was joking when she started in on the head sweaters, but she went even further to use it as an example of what sloppy dressers college students are. (See why I think she's a business major?)

HELLO, obviously you've never spent eight hours in a library writing a paper, or if you did you enjoyed doing it whilst wearing slacks and an ironed dress shirt. And don't even try to convince me those shiny black heels are the most comfortable things to wear when you're slogging through snow across campus from the Fine Arts building to Old Main in under ten minutes.

Heads up, girl. We're college students. Yes, we are transitioning to professionals, but we are also stuck in classes all day and then studying our brains out to pass these classes late into the night. I don't think everyone has the time or need to look like they're about to go broker a business deal with representatives of Honda. When the time comes, most of us manage to rise to the challenge and dress up for a job interview. If we don't figure it out, we miss the job and it's a learning experience instead. And then, we go home and change back into those sloppy sweatpants you despise so much.

On another thought, I'm considering buying some nice, mid-calf boots. They'll go great with my trench coat.

Thursday, November 3, 2011

Procrastination is a Pretty Standard Thing

Dear Blog, I have missed you.

I am ashamed to admit that I have not written in this blog in over a month! For shame. I had a whole bunch of goals for this year, and blogging more frequently was one of them.

Now listening to: Pumped Up Kicks by Foster the People.

I learned a sad and unexpected side affect of procrastinating today. You see, I am now working on an article about geocaching to submit to Cache Valley Magazine, and the first draft is due
today. However, most of my sources have not gotten back to me yet. Luckily, I have one late assignment I can do, so I'm taking that for this one. I plan to write most of it this weekend. For some reason I thought I still had an assignment due in class today, so like any typical journalism student I sat around putting off doing it until the last minute (we have deadlines for a reason. Don't think journalists don't use them, because we do.)

Now listening: Houdini by Foster the People. I think I like their style.

So I spent a whole glorious morning doing meaningless things with the full intention of getting around to doing my assignment and then finally sat down with an hour left before class, only to find it's not something I can do until I turn my article in late next week, anyway. Now I'm left thinking of all the things I could have done (go to the grocery store and then rotate my tires). Dangit.

Now listening: Don't Stop by Foster the People.

Luckily, I've got my blog.

I'm chilling here on the third floor of the library. Have you ever examined the books at a university library? They are so cool! Seriously. I always thought nothing would top a bookstore full of novels, but when you find books all about the cultural impact of shrooms on society, and the graphic novel for V for Vendetta, and then a translated copy of the Egyptian Book of the Dead, you start to appreciate academia.

Now listening: I Would Do Anything for You by Foster the People.

Everyone says a huge winter storm is coming this way tomorrow. From Wunderground's forecast, it looks like we'll get a little snow. There's a 60% chance of it in the evening.
I doubt this'll be anything huge, though. This is Utah. At least, I hope not, because I have not gotten my tires rotated yet, and the all-weather ones are on the back still.

Back to listening to Pumped Up Kicks. I love this song; it's so chill.

What are the photos you've been looking at? Well, this is the results of a photo shoot I did with my cousins a little over a week ago. These two girls are some of my favorite people in the world. We lived with each other my first semester of college, and though we were the three silliest girls in the ever (enough to rival Kitty and Lydia in Pride and Prejudice), we didn't care because we were having so much fun.

Well, I guess I'll sit and Facebook stalk, or maybe wander the rows of bookshelves in search of something weird to read until class starts.
Catch ya'll later!

Oh, and other than "Pumped Up Kicks," my favorite Foster the Kids song is "Houdini." "Sometimes I wanna disappear..."

Ninja vanish!

Saturday, October 1, 2011

Midnight Musings with Miss Dickinson

I'm nobody! Who are you?
Are you--Nobody--too?
Then there's a pair of us!
Don't tell! They'd advertise--you know!

How dreary--to be--Somebody!
How public--like a Frog--
To tell one's name--the livelong June--
To an admiring Bog!

Some days I honestly feel like Nobody. But then, I realize I will always be Somebody to Someone. No one is ever alone. Whether it is your family, your friends or your belief in God that keeps you going, you are never alone.


I still admire Emily Dickinson's spunk, though. Her views on life and love are so right, and yet they baffle because she hardly ever left her house. How did she know so much? Reading her reminds me of my seventh grade English teacher, Ms. Graviet. She pretty much rocked. Ms. Graviet was practically a kid herself, and understood us kids completely. Some may call her airheaded, but I say she is a creative dreamer/idealist.

I have no idea where this post is going. I just wanted to sharpen my writing skills because let's face it: after two years of writing news, my creative pencil is a little dull.

Today, after much anticipation, the back issues of the magazine I want to write for soon arrived. I'm in a class where we write feature stories and actually send them in to magazines to see if they'll get published. Scary! Anyway, this particular magazine took forever to get here, and I was scared it would be late and I'd get an F on my assignment. Thank goodness it's finally here!

Well, I guess I'll go to bed now. I'm low on sleep; I thought I was like this normally, but apparently I'm not.

Wednesday, September 28, 2011

I've Decided to Like September Again

September is, traditionally, not my favorite month. But it's gotten pretty good over the last few weeks.

I have some pretty awesome roommates. I wish I had a picture of all of us together, but here's Tiffany and Erika when we made dinner one Sunday. We're silly.
I went to Peach Days with Joel in Brigham City. We never actually ate peaches there, but the sunset was gorgeous.

A traveling replica of the Vietnam Memorial (plus memorials for other wars and conflicts) came to Logan a couple weeks ago. Sophia and I headed there one Sunday afternoon. We got there in time to watch the riding salute. Seeing all those names... they just seem to go on and on. It was a sobering experience. 

This was not so sobering, but it made me laugh.

New Years Resolution! Pluots: A cross between a plum and an apricot. Not so bad. Tasty.

On Friday night, during Homecoming week, I made the strange choice to sleep out on the Quad with a bunch of friends. The Hurd (USU's largest club. They support the sports) was sponsoring it. It was cold and windy, and I didn't get very much sleep. But hey it's all in the experience, right?

Last Sunday Joel and I went up the canyon to look at all the pretty leaves. Well, part of the time it was me pointing out the leaves and him telling me the names of the rocks he climbs. ;) Climbers are very creative when it comes to naming things. It was a lot of fun. We ended up at Rick's Spring and explored the cave there. I wish I got a picture of the spot where all the water comes up. It was so blue and clear and pretty!

I've decided to like September again. Now I can't wait for October. Wooooot!

Thursday, September 22, 2011

Be Happy

Lately the theme prevailing in my life is: Be Happy. Talks in sacrament meeting, people telling me to be happy, and questions hanging over my head. Well, I think this is jolly good, because I've been told (repeatedly) that I am a generally happy person.

And yet take my attitude over the last year. It feels like I've been a blah, blah, depressive/my life sucks drama queen. I sure hope I don't come across that way to people I've just met, because honestly I'm quite a happy character.

Let me state how much being happy means to me. If you aren't happy, you've got nothing. You're only happy when you are doing what is right, and even then you've got to learn to let go at the end of the day and try to be happy.

Matthew 6:33-34 (Also found in 3 Nephi 13:33-34)

"But seek ye first the kingdom of God, and his righteousness; and all these things shall be added unto you. Take therefore no thought for the morrow: for the morrow shall take thought for the things of it self. Sufficient unto the day is the evil thereof."

I see people everyday who are looking for reasons not to be happy, and feel like they'd be much better off if they quit spending so much time looking for the bad in their lives and just accepted life for the way it is. Life is not meant to be easy, it's only going to get harder. So enjoy the ride.

Last month I stumbled on a cute little website. Did you know August is Happiness Happens Month? Honest. The Secret Society of Happy People promote it. Now imagine if there were more people out there who enjoyed life how it is and let happiness happen to them instead of shoving it away. I bet we'd see a lot less arrests, fights, wars, and executions.

Bobby McFerrin had it right when he sang the song, "Don't Worry Be Happy."

"In every life we have some trouble
When you worry you make it double
Don't worry, be happy."

Even though Happiness Happens Month has passed, I challenge you all to stop worrying, and just let yourself be happy. Put away the worries and troubles and the stress they cause for just a little while. Don't worry. Be happy.

Saturday, September 10, 2011

College Playlist (So Far)

I have no idea what I'm going to say in this post. Hm....

Well, lately I've had this idea for a playlist. One that would describe my life since coming to college. It's been building in my head slowly and I hope I remember it all, so here goes (going to my iTunes now...)

A bit depressing? Full of ups and downs? That's life, I guess.

A Place in This World by Taylor Swift
Last Summer by Lostprophets
Boys, Boys, Boys by Lady Gaga
Chances by Five for Fighting
Must Have Done Something Right by Relient K
Hello Brooklyn by All Time Low
Freak Me Out by Weezer
Sunrise by Norah Jones
Party in the USA by Miley Cyrus
Don't Know Why by Norah Jones
Your Love Is My Drug by Ke$ha
Summer's Over by Jonathan Coulton
Candle (Sick and Tired) by White Tie Affair
Cold As You by Taylor Swift
What Sarah Said by Death Cab for Cutie
Mixed Tape by Jack's Mannequin
Single Ladies by Beyonce
Telephone by Lady Gaga and Beyonce
Lights and Sounds by Yellowcard
Haven't Met You Yet by Michael Buble
Check Yes Juliet by We the Kings
Landed by Ben Folds
Rockin' the Suburbs by Ben Folds
Fidelity by Regina Spektor
Love Drunk by Boys Like Girls
Eventually You Have to Grow Up by Libbie Linton
Uptight by Fictionist
Time to Time by Fictionist
I've Just Seen A Face by Jim Sturgess
Valentine's Day by Linkin Park
No Sunlight by Death Cab for Cutie
I'm Not Over by Carolina Liar
Grapevine Fires by Death Cab for Cutie
American Pie by Don McLean
Marching Bands of Manhattan by Death Cab of Cutie
Us by Regina Spektor
Firework by Katy Perry
Go to Hell by David Ford
For You and Your Denial by Yellowcard
Hang You Up by Yellowcard
Always All Ways by Lostprophets
Satisfy by Vedera
Monday Morning by Death Cab for Cutie
Me and My Gang by Rascal Flatts
If I Die Young by the Band Perry
The Story of Us by Taylor Swift
Rolling in the Deep by Adele
Last Friday Night by Katy Perry
I'm Only Me When I'm With You by Taylor Swift
Cowboy Take Me Away by the Dixie Chicks
Just a Kiss by Lady Antebellum
Save the Last Dance for Me by Michael Buble
I Try by Macy Gray
Always Love by Nada Surf
Simple by Katy Perry
If I Fell by Evan Rachel Wood
Shadows and Regrets by Yellowcard
My Wish by Rascal Flatts
Fallin' For You by Colbie Caillet
Somewhere Only We Know by Keane
Afraid by Yellowcard
Wake Me Up When September Ends by Green Day
Sweet Child O' Mine by Guns N' Roses
Collide by Howie Day

Wednesday, August 31, 2011

I have a thing for paths and woods lately.

(Photo from Google Images)
Running through the woods down a path I can't see,
If I keep on running the past won't catch up with me.
Until finally I've stopped and I'm out of breath,
And the possibilities before me scare me to death.
The path has split--there's a big tree in the way,
The view down one path leaves me nothing to say.
The other is crooked, long, and has no end in sight,
Not knowing what to do--I sit and stare all night.
The sun comes up and I'm poised to run,
Dawn's light seeps through the trees and the day has begun.
Each path beckons with an unearthly whine,
Poised, I stay on that junction to wait for a sign.
Something must come and tell me the way,
Something has to--I wait all day.
Until finally mountain cold seeps through my skin,
I know if I do nothing I'll wait all night again.
So instead I grab a woodman's tool and swing at the tree,
The way in front is now clear to me.
Trudging through the brush I injure a foot,
Yet still I keep walking 'cause it's all I've got.
Between these paths I forge my own,
Refusing to choose, refusing to own.

-By: Me. :)

Sunday, August 14, 2011

Homelessness, eh. It ain't so bad.

Fireworks August 6. We had the best of times!
I'll probably never think of the Numa Numa song the same
again, thanks to these people. We were cruising down the
road at 50 mph, jamming to music. They were bouncing so
hard it made the car rock back and forth.
The reason I have been so absent from this blog is not only all the fun times I have with my friends, all the time I spend blogging for work, and the time I spend going to visit my awesome family, but the fact that I am homeless right now.


On August 6 my apartment complex had everyone who isn't staying through the fall move out so they can have the apartments professionally cleaned. We later found out that not every apartment gets it, either. Just the ones that aren't cleaned thoroughly enough. I think they take waaaaay too much advantage of us poor college students. Not only do we have to pay a ridiculous amount in rent, but we have to clean the apartments good enough to pass a white glove inspection when we move out. All I can say is, I am NEVER living there again. The management was not very good.

But I digress. Sorry, I still have bitter issues with that place. My new apartment complex won't let me move in until the 26th. So... I am homeless for three weeks. It really isn't so bad because I have friends who get to stay in their places a lot longer than I could (And they paid less than I did, too. Go figure.). I am enjoying the couch hopping experience. I feel like a boy scout because my motto has been "Leave no trace" everywhere I go. This last week I lived on a steady diet of Kix, bread, and fast food. I even have the packing down to a science. All my clothes are in two 18-gallon Sterilite bins, my shower stuff has its own bag, and I roll up my blankets around my pillows every morning and stash them in a neat little corner of my friends' living room.

I know I've said this before, but I have the best of friends. So many people have offered to let me crash on their couch in the last few weeks. Thank you, guys!

Still, I cannot wait for the day when I can move into my apartment. I am counting the days.

This picture is kinda old. I went boating about three weeks ago and this is  the souvenir I got for not putting sunblock on fast enough.  
New Years resolution! Saturn Peaches.

Razzleberry pie. Yum.

Advice: Do NOT freeze your raspberries. And if you must, wash them first. Otherwise, you'll end up with mush when you try to wash them.

Still, Razzleberry Pie was calling to me, so I made it anyway. It turned out rather tasty, if I do say so myself.

The recipe I used was simple. Click here. 

I decided to put chopped apple in it, as well, since the frozen Marie Calendar version has apples and it is very good. Be sure to chop up the peeled apple really fine. I used a Fiji because tart is better when baking.

The top crust didn't want to really cooperate, especially since it was a deep dish. 

I worked hard to make it look pretty. I decided the bumpy look is in, and pressed the tip of my knife around the edge to give it the triangle/divet look. Then, I ran the blade around the edges to get the excess dough. Be sure before you are doing all this to press the top edges firmly on the bottom edges. No one likes a leaky crust.

I lightly brushed the top with some water (Just get a paper towl damp, you don't need a fancy basting brush.), and sprinkled sugar on the top. I wish I had added more sugar to the filling because it was very tart from the fresh raspberries.

When you bake, don't forget to cover the edges with strips of foil! 
And voila! A delicious Razzleberry Pie. Oh, how I love summer.

Very simple, very delicious. 

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Anti-Social Ramblings and the Bieber's Demise

60s night a few weeks ago.
Let's face it: I write the best blogs after midnight. And now I have the sudden urge to tell you about my day (technically yesterday) in a very honest/journal-like manner. Be warned, I shall be pretty honest here.

8:00 a.m.: I awake from a disturbing dream, the details of which are still pretty fuzzy.

8:30: My phone alarm ("We Used to Be Friends" by the Dandy Warhols) goes off, reminding me that I had planned to go to Ogden with some Scott, Nate, and Cassie in an hour. With a sinking feeling, I realize this is my last morning of freedom until Monday because I work a morning shift Thursday, Friday, and Saturday, and church starts at 10 a.m. Sunday (Ironically it's the same time of my other morning shifts, though church is voluntary and much more enjoyable--when I can stay awake/ on task during Sacrament Meeting. Ask Elise for details of my most recent weeks.) I am not in the right state of mind to go to Ogden, and I really want to get some stuff done before my next three mornings are taken up with sitting at a desk, half awake, occasionally ringing up someone for education or scrapbook supplies or, miraculously, a book. Most people don't really shop in the mornings for that kind of stuff, except for the occasional frazzled middle age woman who stands at the doors waiting for us to open up at ten. I don't know why they stand there, because we are not going to open them any earlier, unless it's raining, or something.

But I digress.

So, I text Scott and tell him I'm not going to make it. Unbeknownst to me, this day turns into an anti-social day.

By the time I get up, I am moving pretty slowly. I start reading one of the library books that is due tomorrow, I bust out my brand spanking new portable hard drive and start backing up my computer (I have the bad habit of crashing computers so I finally bit the monetary bullet and got something with enough drive space to back up all my precious files.) I get to talk to Amber, who I hardly ever see since we are both raging workaholics and when I'm not working I'm usually at the Round House dressed up like another decade. Heck, I even see our one remaining roommate, Mady. Our other roommate, Randi, moved out unexpectedly on Monday. I have my suspicions, but let's just say she is a different egg and she's probably much happier living nearer to her fiance.
Me and Jacie during last week's 30s/40s night. We both unwittingly dressed up as Rosie the Riveter. I do crazy stuff like this every week. For reals. My neighbors must think I'm completely cucku. That's okay, I don't like them much either.

Then... after it all, I finally get ready and go to work at one. I mean to go in early, but as with all things early (1 p.m. is early for me these days), I fail. At least I was right on time--now that's a cause for celebration. I kinda wish I'd get more credit for showing up on time instead of getting congratulations for being 5 minutes late instead of 10. It just goes to show if you are late a few times in a row they come to expect it as normal. Sad day.

Work was BUSY. Holy cow. I also think I have bad computers karma (Remember the note above about why I bought a portable hard drive finally?), because today, while I was using them at separate times, the computer cash register upstairs ceased to work and the fax machine downstairs ceased to print. Dangit.

Tonight was Wednesday, so I sat back in General Books and did some ordering for my boss, Lacey. She's a cutie, but tonight she gave me twice as much as usual and in between doing that, straightening books, hunting down books for customers who called not remembering the exact name, sending faxes on the other, newer fax machine and ringing up customers who couldn't pay upstairs because someone (cough cough) broke the register, I was very busy.

It only pays minimum wage, but I still love my job.

Then I finally get to go home once we close at 8 p.m. and I have a sudden urge for chocolate. Remembering that I finished off the chocolate chips the night before, I head to WalMart and get a bag of Ghiradelli Milk Chocolate chips and some eggs and go home and make brownies. Then I get to spend the rest of the luxurious evening in my old, much loved Angels jersey and sweats, listening to the music I've never heard on my iTunes yet, eating first Chunky soup, then the brownies, and reading Meg Cabot's "Size 12 Is Not Fat." I missed Meg Cabot. Her writing style is great.

Me with the cute 2-week old Alaskan Husky puppy I got to hold at Elise's uncle's house on our mini roadtrip through Idaho. 

Are you still reading this, my dear reader? My, you are patient.

My sister's Facebook status came on my phone around 9:45: "Okay, so the kid on CSI--is that Justin Bieber? Right now channel two!" I couldn't resist, especially if it really is Bieber (Will his voice ever change? He has to hit puberty sometime, right?). I turn on KUTV and sure enough, the Bieb is riding shotgun in some dude's truck, on the lamb from the Las Vegas popo. It ends dramatically, with his accomplice surrendering in a stand-off and Bieber shooting him and then getting shot in the chest and dying. My sister sent me a text soon after: "They just killed Justin Bieber!"

I was wondering if at the time they filmed the episode the cop who shot Bieber's character was thinking the exact same thing--"I just killed Justin Bieber!"

And now I'm here.

Did I ever mention I love listening to Ben Folds when I'm melancholy? Well, I do.

I can't wait for next semester. I like having my own bedroom at Oak Ridge, and not paying utilities, and the fast internet, and the bathroom, and especially the walk-in closet, but the people here are not my kind of people.

Well I guess that's about it for now. If you managed to hang on through to the end of the entire post, I tip my hat off to you.


Saturday, July 9, 2011

Easy-Peasy Harry Potter Wands

Last night, I found a blog post where the lady made wands for her son's Harry Potter Party. Well, since I'm going to the midnight premiere of 7.2, I HAD to make one for myself. The process is relatively easy. I was almost done, and then my friends found out what I was doing so it turned into a whole group craft project.

All you need is paint, scissors (in case things go wrong. I'll explain later), lots and lots of hot glue, and computer paper.
Roll your paper into a tight funnel, but with enough room on both ends to fill with glue. We had a debate about this at the Round House. Some people wanted their wands really really skinny. You just have to be able to fill it with glue and give it space to run down the tube. That's important.
STEP ONE: Fill it with hot glue. You want the glue to go down at least halfway, preferably 2/3. You'll be able to tell how far it goes by the heat. Keep the cone VERTICAL. This helps the glue to go down. Your main problem will be in getting it to go down far enough. So just hold the tube vertical and let the glue drip down the inside walls. Sometimes you may want to squeeze the sides of the tube a little to get the glue to go down more.
Once one side cools (which doesn't take very long), fill up the other end. Be sure to give the ends a rounded tip before you paint, or your wands will be funny-pointy. 

Now, you may run into the same problem most of us did. There was an air pocket of about two inches in the middle. So, take a very sharp knife, and gently cut a slit lengthwise in the wand. Be sure it only goes through to the middle, not the other side. You want it to be big enough to get the tip of the glue gun in there. I decided to use this as an opportunity and make it look like a knot in the wood. After all, no wand is perfect, right? 
Above is Scott filling the hole in his wand. The wand needs to be SOLID all the way through, or it'll bend when you try waving it around to cast spells on your friends (or enemies). 

Now, STEP TWO is to paint it! Start with a simple base coat of brown or black. Do you want your wand to look darker or lighter? Use a sponge brush and don't worry about details or being super thorough yet.
Cassie's wand is looking good!
The paint takes very little time to dry if you don't overdo it.

Next, ask yourself if you want your "wood" to have more of a red cast or green cast (or whatever color you want I suppose). Mix the red or green with some brown and brush that on top. Don't freak out if it looks way too green or red! Go over it with some more brown before it's completely dry. To get the woody look you don't want to completely cover every inch with the one color. Feel free to experiment here. You can always paint over your mistakes.

STEP THREE is to add embellishment like a handle or knots, or cute squigglys, or whatever. I used hot glue to make most of it. The others did a lot before they painted it, and that's okay too, but I think it's a bit easier to paint the first coat if it's on a smooth surface. To each his own.

Nate, who is dressing up as Dumbledore for the premiere, made a pretty cool Death Stick!
Now, you just paint over the details you made with more of the same paint from the second coat. Or whatever you want to do. I used some really dark brown just for the details. And then I added sparkles to make it look "magical."

Elise, who will be Professor Umbridge at the midnight showing, made a bead in the middle with glue and then painted it pink. How fitting!

Jacie used a dowel instead of glue to make her wand, and it also turned out nicely. The handle is studded with crystal-like beads.

Cassie elected to carve out a handle. Ooo.

Tesha's wand turned out pretty cool. It had sort of a willowy-foresty look.
Garrett, who will be Severus Snape at the midnight showing, went the extra mile and painted his silver with nail polish (it's all the girls had on hand to give him.).

Scott kept his wand simple, choosing to have a dark, reddish look. Classic.
No matter how you choose to make your wand, remember it's all in fun and it should be unique to you or your character! After all, the wand chooses the wizard...