Thursday, October 30, 2008


Hi all,

I moved over to Wordpress, and my feed address has changed. Please update your feeds to or visit and click the subscribe button on the right. Thanks!!! :)

Monday, October 27, 2008

Cutest Shoes

Well, I'm officially on a spending freeze, except for food (and the parking ticket I just got yesterday...argh). I'm hoping to save enough to do something fun over the holidays, though likely it'll be decided last minute. I wouldn't say no to a mini roadtrip in the NE, but it all depends on who's around and dates and all that. We'll see, but it should be fun. :)

If I WEREN'T on a freeze though, I might have to seriously consider these flats...

Sunday, October 26, 2008


I wonder what Amazon's Q4 Kindle sales will be now that Oprah has given it her endorsement?

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

Short and Sweet

I am about to jump in the shower but thought I would do a little update since I have so much to post but no time to do it in. Today's going to be rather crazy... I'm just hoping I actually make it to housegroup tonight, since I haven't been for the past few weeks and I'm getting "Are you dead yet?" emails. Ay... Anyway, had a great time in DC this past weekend, and I'm really excited to have a mug of hot chocolate during my meeting at 9 this morning. :) And I finally got my flight for Homecoming so YAY North Carolina in a few weeks! Just in time for recruiting madness hooray! ;) Okay, time to get cleaned.

PS Thinking about this...

Thursday, October 16, 2008


Lately I've really gotten into portraits, especially those where the subjects are experiencing one of those universal emotions that you've also experienced. The connection is there even if they're not real or you've never met.

This one is called "Learning to Love You More," which is a nice sentiment.

This one is Coco Chanel, and she is ultra glamorous.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008


Monday, October 13, 2008

I Finished!

Hooray! The marathon was yesterday and I did cross the finish line! Overall, it was a great experience. I was lined up in the middle of a huge mass of people, just waiting and nervously telling jokes before the start. After the gun went off, we started shuffling forward for about 15 minutes before we got to the start line and could start running. So crazy! I think the first few miles were my favorite part of the race--because everyone was freaking out excited that we were finally here, cheering for each other in the tunnels, and getting a bit emotional at all of the "18 WEEKS OF TRAINING!" signs. :) The first five miles went SO FAST. I didn't miss my music at all and it was really fun to run in the middle of the city. We headed north towards Lincoln Park and the temperature was really nice, though we were mostly in the shade. I alternated between gatorade and water at all the aid stations, and continued running on. Saw Katy at mile 10 which was really fun. And of course I taped my name to my shirt so thousands of people were screaming my name and cheering me on (what a boost). Mile 12 was a bit rough, I think because the first part went so fast and then I had to calm down and settle into the pace. Finished the half on pace for 4:18. By mile 16 it was really hot, and we were out of the shade into the full sun. I started walking through the aid stations, and really my legs were okay except for my knees. Saw that the Alert level was now Red (it had been yellow throughout the race) as the heat got stronger, and at around mile 20, the guy I had been following for a couple miles just collapsed in front of me, and we were all yelling for the police and the medics. I've never seen anything like that during a race (though it's pretty common) so for the next couple miles I took it slower, and had to repeat to myself that I wasn't going to die on the course. I started pounding bananas like it was my job to ward off cramps and had to will myself forward over miles 22-25. At mile 25, the crowd picked up again, and I was just looking for the right turn, which meant we were really close to the finish line. When we got to that turn, I was completely euphoric and started going faster, up the hill. We turned left at the top and could see the finish line. Was so surreal but I pounded the last 300 meters and finished 4:51:54. Not nearly as fast as I would have liked, but I finished. :) Feeling pretty okay today. I've been icing my knees but otherwise just a little sore in my quads. I think I'm done running for a while, but I can't help but think of my next race...anyone up for it? :)

Thanks friends for all your support...I really could not have done it without you! :)

Sunday, October 12, 2008

It's Today

Wow, I'm actually running the marathon today. I slept awesomely last night, I think because it seemed too surreal for me to be nervous. Now it's here and I still can't believe it--but I'll bet a lot I'm ready to jump out of my skin in about an hour! Hope it goes well.

Saturday, October 11, 2008

New Old Stuff

Cutest Dog Bed Ever

Uh huh. Goliath is going straight in one of these babies whenever I get him/he exists.

Thursday, October 09, 2008


Toldja orange was in! ;)

Monday, October 06, 2008

DIY Projects

I'd like to do more DIY projects around the house--that is, once I have a house. At this point I'm satisfied with painting my apartment, and my recent art project. :) But if I DID have a house, one of the first things I'd want to do is reupholster my couch. It's something I'd just like to know how to do for the fun of it, and in general I like giving old, ugly things a new life. And then the other day I came across these pictures from an old woodworking book, and I thought, hey, I wonder if there's a market for a DIY helper business. I think there are a lot of people out there that like working with their hands and doing cool stuff in their homes, but have little experience and no idea where to turn. So instead of spending a lot of time and money to, say, reupholster my couch (rather poorly) myself, or paying a lot of money to get someone else to do it (whilst depriving myself of the learning and sense of accomplishment), what if I could call a local artisan to come to my house with their tools and teach me how to do it? I could save money on the tools I'll have little need for in the future, but I'd be able to learn a new skill, and then execute it under the guidance of a professional. I like the idea of individual people helping people, and I think it could be a win-win for crafty people who love what they do but perhaps have no good market in which to sell their skills, and busy people who would like to learn these extra skills but the opportunity costs are currently too high. What do you think--is it a winner?

A Perfect Dress

Claire Danes looks stunning in Zac Posen...

Etsy 2

Also found this cute wristlet from CamilleStar. Too cute!

Shop Local on Etsy

Hello there. The other day I was on Etsy and decided that it's getting a bit big for its own good... It's getting increasingly difficult to parse through all the stuff on there, which is why I was so thrilled to see that they have a Shop Local option to discover new sellers. My favorite was Retrofied, who sells handmade bags. Maybe I'm just on a bag kick these days, but there were several that were so cute! Exhibits A through F:

Saturday, October 04, 2008


Today I really want to move to Portland or Seattle and spend today driving through forests and hiking up mountains. I think it's time to pick apples and eat homemade donuts, to sleep in tents in the backyard, to fall asleep reading on the couch while the family watches the Eagles game, and to play football on the quad with friends.

That sounds wonderful, but right now it's time to run, shower, and go to class. :)

T-8 Days

Well, in exactly 8 days I will be lining up to the start line for my first marathon. What a crazy thought. I guess I really have come a long way since April, when I had to struggle through a mile, then two, then three. I remember in those first runs how my heart resisted the new exercise, which was overwhelming so early on. I tried to encourage myself by increasing my speed each day to give myself little successes to be proud of. I started to feel comfortable, calm, and introspective as I ran. As I continued, I went on a rollercoaster of emotions from extreme doubt that I could actually make it through a marathon alive to a stubborn commitment to finish something I started. I often picture myself crossing the finish line and embracing everyone around me, including friends and family and random strangers. I am excited to race again. It's been a long time since I ran in a race and I'm getting the nerves like no other. But I'm mostly excited because I know I'm in a lot better shape than I was in high school, and if I can just stay calm, I know I'll be fine. I've never been to a marathon before, so I'm not sure what to expect in terms of spectators, but everyone says Chicago is PACKED so I'm excited for that too. I am bummed that my parents won't be there, and that my aunt and uncle and grandparents will be out of town, but hopefully Katy will come and maybe a couple of my Chicago friends. I didn't realize that it would be so important for me to have people there, but the training has turned into more of an emotional journey than I anticipated, and suddenly I'm very grateful that Todd is also running. I have a feeling I will be a ball of mess throughout the race, which is just fine by me, as long as I don't get lazy about my pace since I won't have my iPod. No more Mamma Mia! to keep me pushing harder ;)

Should be a fun ride. Now that it's so close I just can't wait to get started, but I know it'll be here before I know it. Wish me luck!

Friday, October 03, 2008


I am thankful for:
-cold enough weather to wear my rainbow socks under my boots
-taking a shower at night means you don't have to take one the next morning :)

Tuesday, September 30, 2008


During my summer in Michigan I really fell in love with the ranch. I've never really liked it before because I just assumed it had to look pretty dowdy. But there were quite a few attractive and modern ranches on my way to work that really changed my mind. And the other week I came across this renovated ranch and completely fell head over heels. I love white and one of my all-time favorite architectural details is wood beams on a vaulted ceiling.

And what do you think of this colorful one? I mean, I do love yellow, but this might be a bit too much, even for me! I do love the little terrace on top of the roof though. So relaxing!


Trying to decide if I want to buy this market bag or not. Overall I love the look...more casual stylish than like you spent a lot of cash and time to look amazing. I wanted to buy it to replace my backpack, which is getting tired though I still love it. But wanted something a little less collegiate. The only thing I'm worried about it that if I put my laptop in there the pleats will be all messed up and it'll look boxy on the bottom, and that it might be very heavy on my shoulders. One great thing about a backpack is good shoulder and back support, and it's something I don't want to give up lackadaisically. Hmmm, it is really cute--I can't decide!

Cute Bathrooms

Some pretty cute bathrooms: this first one I love the blue theme (I'd like to have a "blue room" or a "red room," etc. someday) and all the tiles. The built-in look of the cabinets is nice, and I like the separated sinks. But maybe there a little too separate with the cabinets in between? The bromeliad also looks a bit smushed on the right side there...all in all, pretty cute though. The second one reminds me of my own bathroom, which is mostly white and clean looking, though I have my Dona Catalana framed magazine and my red/orange towels and rug, and my gray shower curtain. I like simplicity of it. And I really like those maps!

Monday, September 29, 2008

Stairway Garden

Oh my goodness, when I have a cute apartment on the second floor of an old house (or, you know, my own house), I am totally doing this!! I just love all the cascading plants, and the wide tube is a great idea for watering! I wonder if those plants are potted or just smashed into the soil? Hmmm, I'd guess potted, but anyway so cool!!

As an aside, my own tabletop garden is going very well. I now have 5 plants, plus my basil plant that I just bought last week at the farmers market. So hooray! I'm making a chicken pasta tonight for dinner so I'm excited to use my fresh herbs! Hooray!

If I Were Designing Kindle 2.0...

So, I've had my Kindle for a while now and I still love it.I find I read a lot more, and better books (classics are so cheap!! 99 cents for most, and some free content as well). I've only bought one bestseller so far (9.99 for those...currently reading Brisingr by Christopher Paolini, which is right now average to good). Anyway, as awesome as the Kindle is, I think it has amazing potential in the next few versions. I anticipate that a lot of the products we use now will ultimately consolidate into fewer, more powerful tools that are easily adaptable for our needs (i.e. I've been advocating the "e-machine" for a long time...a transportable device that will serve as an iPod, phone, eReader, laptop, etc. that can dock into a more permanent station at home with more memory and space and all that...I really cannot wait until this day--I'm sure it is to come :)). So yes, the Kindle--unlimited possibilities, and I've been playing around with ideas of what could be improved, how the product could really be defined, etc. for a few weeks. Originally I was planning to ramp up my skills in Google SketchUp to make an illustration of my own, but after poking around on BlogKindle and other sites, I found a few illustrations that together formed my vision of Kindle 2.0. So, first, my inspiration!

In order for the Kindle to be successful in the academic market, it needs a bigger screen. Charts and diagrams in textbooks are vital to understanding the material, and making them into microscopic images destroys most of their value. Thus, you want a screen big enough to display textbooks, but small enough that it's not overwhelming for the everyday reader on the bus. I really like the idea of a 360 degree folding device where you can open it up to show large pages in Portrait or Landscape, as well as two smaller portrait pages when the device is held horizontally. It should also be possible to fold the Kindle back onto itself, so you can read only one smaller portrait page, similar to the current format of the Kindle. After reading on it for a few books, I find that things are much simpler, and that one page is less overwhelming than all of the text of two pages side by side. I'd like the option of keeping this format. I also think the Kindle should be able to fold the other way, so that both sides of the screen face each other for safe storing. In general I find the next page and previous page buttons to be really useful. I am not bothered at all that they are easy to hit, and it makes one-handed, snuggled-up-in-bed reading both possible and enjoyable :) In terms of other smaller changes, it'd be nice if the keypad was part of a touch screen, similar to the iPhone, and it might be useful to include a stylus to more directly underline or choose words to look up in the dictionary. It'd also be nice to access the dictionary from the home screen, and search for words directly instead of first looking them up in a book, and then looking them up in the dictionary. I find that while I do look up definitions while reading, sometimes I later remember the word I "learned" but not the definition, so it'd be useful to double check more easily.

So all of these things would be awesome changes and could really make a superb eReader. But what would really be revolutionary would be to force the Kindle into a screen component of a DDM PC. I find the concept of DDM computers fascinating, and it would be a really cool way to tap into a completely new market. I kind of view it more like this, where the Kindle would be part of the laptop screen at home, and then could be taken wherever to read/listen to music/watch DVDs on the go (I know the scope of the Kindle is currently only books, but seriously, I wholeheartedly believe that we'll eventually have one device to do it all). This would be great for families who have several Kindles, and could add/subtract to the main display of the family computer at home. But more realistically, I think increasingly family members each have their own laptop, so they would only add/take away from their own computer, which may actually work better for standard screen sizes and all).

So, what do you think? Is the Kindle the next iPhone? I say yes!

Edit: I also think it will be important to solve the following issue: now that people will buy fewer paper books, their libraries at home will be smaller, and it will be harder to show off what they've read to others. I also get a lot of comfort from being surrounded by all of the books I love, so that is lost as well. It'd be nice to allow some sort of "cover" that would display what you're reading on the Kindle, though this isn't a perfect solution. I can't decide whether iPod-esque anonymity or public displays would be better...maybe the option to do either. Hmm...


Cute looks for J.Crew as they partner with an independent designer (for the flower appliques). Cool idea to garner support from the mainstream and indie crowds.

Other Random Photos

Out to Sea

Two very different moods, both of which I love

Chicagoist Photos

Thought I'd share these recent photos of Chicago in the summertime, as I'm sure I'll need them to get through the next several months! It's not too bad yet, though it is pretty rainy today... Trying to decide if I really want to drive up north to run with the R4R group or just run on my own. Hmmm, maybe if there's parking... Anyway!