Monday, January 31, 2011

Look At This Stuff. Isn't It Neat?

Sorry for not posting.  I'm sure you were just sitting at the computer all weekend, constantly hitting refresh, waiting to read all my random babble.  Where is that sarcasm font when you need it?

We were in California for our ASL assembly.  Best. One. Ever.  I know.  Everyone says that.  But don't you feel that way every time you leave the assembly.  It's so bittersweet.  The program was just what we needed.  The friends were there.  Happy times all around.  ASL is constantly growing with new people joining, learning sign language and of course more deaf.  It's exciting, but at the same time hard when you are looking around the room.  Don't know you.  Don't know you.  Don't know you.  So many new faces!

Here are some ramblings on this weekend.  Enjoy.  

1.  I like road trips!  I grew up driving from Wisconsin down to St. Louis and Arizona to visit family.  Seven hour drive to California is nothing.  I don't get car sick, so I can read to my little hearts content.  Which I didn't do this time, on account of this book that I'm just having trouble getting into.  I might give up on it for awhile and try something else.  Anyone have any suggestions on a good captivating read?  Besides this blog, of course.  Bahaha.  Instead of reading this time, I did knit a little bit.  I'll have to show you what I made later!  It'll be a surprise.  There might also have been some singing.  What am I talking about, might also pfftt.  If there is music, which there was for all seven hours of our trip, there was singing.  Singing until your voice is hoarse.  We come from a long line of singers, you see.  My great grandparents were opera singers.  My grandma can pick up some sheet music and sing it.  My mom has a good voice, too.  Then there is us.  The talent steadily gets worse as you go down the line, but we can at least carry a tune.  For some reason on road trips, the Disney music will come up on the iPod.  How did that get there?  I was a Little Mermaid girl myself.  I used to have the songs memorized and sing to random strangers in stores.  "I'm in a store and I'm singing!!"  What Disney princess were you?  Oh no, it's going into the vault forever!  You almost got me, Disney, you clever man you.  Then there is always The Phantom of the Opera Soundtrack.  It just doesn't get old.  

2.  I hate you, Nail Polish.  Set aside a whole night to do your nail polish and nothing else.  I was not so smart and was painting my nails the day I also had to do my hair, makeup, and get dressed.  With each additional activity, or let's face it with every move I made, my poor nail polish was being smudged.  I had to ask Syd to help me get dressed to try to avoid further injury.  I'm ticklish and that was awkward.  Sisters are the best.  I had to look at said bumpy, smudged nails the whole rest of the weekend, since we didn't bring nail polish remover.  I hate you, Nail Polish!  

3.  The lights went out at the assembly.  This is huge.  Without technology, we would be nothing. Nothing, I tell you!  What do you do when the lights go out?  Your whole assembly depends on video feed and you are dependent on your sense of sight alone.  You do nothing and then take a couple pictures, that's what.  The assembly was at a stand still for a few minutes until they got things back up and running.  Crazy.  

4.  I take too many pictures of my food.  No pictures of pretty people in pretty clothes at the assembly.  Nope.  I'm horrible at interrupting good, juicy conversation for a picture.  So instead you get pictures of my desserts over the weekend.  They were delicious.  

5.  Dear Sister Crabby.  To the sister sitting in front of us on Sunday morning: Sydney is so very sorry that her yawn was so bothersome to you that you had to turn all the way around in your seat to give her a dirty look.  Sorry that she yawned again, not on purpose mind you, causing you to lean all the way over in your seat so that her repulsive breathe might not reach you.  We are also sorry that you didn't come back to your seat in the afternoon, I sneezed and would've liked to see your reaction.  Hope you found a good seat elsewhere, perhaps in front of one of the many friends who we heard coughing throughout the day.  I'm sure you were a source of laughs for them as you were for us.  We thank you!  

Thursday, January 27, 2011

Kul... Like Awesome

If you didn't already know there is a large population of Bhutanese refugees from Nepal here.  We have met several deaf.  Now, besides ASL, we are learning Nepalese sign language.  When we visit them, it's like we are stepping into another world.  It's made our time here bearable and has been a much needed challenge.  They are so warm and welcoming.  As you walk up to their door the aroma of various spices overwhelms you.  They are so appreciative of our visits that they normally provide us with fresh fruit, traditional dumplings, and hot milk tea.  We have had some other strange things (I don't know if you could call it food) offered us.  I'm willing to try anything.  Remember Durian, the stinky fruit?  It's not so bad.

Chamuni with her nephew in his pink sweatshirt.  They don't have much.  But isn't he adorable!  

The deaf have a few years of education or none at all.  The conditions that they lived in were pretty rough and Beda (one of the deaf men) always shares the horror stories of the times in Nepal.  It took us a long time to connect the little bits and pieces we were getting from this foreign sign language.  If you're interested in learning a little bit more, look at this website.  It's been quite a few months and we are really starting to be able to communicate well.  So proud of us!

I've been trying to get a video to show you what it looks like, but whenever I try, Beda doesn't go all Nepali but tries to use more of the ASL he is learning.  It's good, but I want to capture some Nepalese sign language to show you and it's just not happening. =)  It's been interesting at the meetings.  In Nepalese sign language the sign for love is the ASL sign for friend.  The Nepalese sign for friend is the ASL sign for marry.  You can imagine the confusion when Beda went up to everyone telling them he would like to be friends, but they thought he was saying do you want to marry me?  How cute!  Also, the language has a lot of the Indian head bob going on.  It's kind of like a bobble head movement.  Slight variations of the Indian head nod can mean yes, I understand, maybe, part of a question, and etc.  I catch myself doing it now! I will throw in a Nepalese sign all the time, too.  When you know a couple languages, it's amazing how your brain automatically switches back and forth knowing which language is better and easier to convey that specific thought.

Beda is married to Chamuni and they live with Beda's family all crammed in this small apartment.  Then there is Lawa, who is another deaf friend who lives in the same apartment complex with his family.  Their family is all hearing.  It's interesting, while we are sitting there teaching them, other Nepali neighbors will just walk in and sit down.  They will take in the spectacle of us signing, talk about us amongst themselves in Nepalese, and then just walk out.  No questions asked.  Not awkward at all.  It's also interesting that they all communicate with the deaf very well using the signs they know.  We can communicate using their sign language with the hearing that don't know any English.  The younger people do know some English, but somewhat limited.  Funny story.  Beda's younger brother and another friend were sitting there one day.  Beda's brother's name is Kul (pronounced like cool).  His friend said to us, "His name is Kul... like awesome!"  This has become our new catch phrase.  It's Kul, like awesome.  Huh?  Maybe you had to be there.  ; )

Other cultures are just fascinating, aren't they?  We will never run out of things to learn.  Isn't it exciting to see people try something for the first time?  It's all fresh and new, even if it is the most normal thing to you.  Like buckling a seatbelt or bowling.  Some coworkers at work had never tried Nutella (Crazy talk, I know!) and seeing them try it for the first time just made me happy.  Of course, the best is teaching the truth!  All the different people we come in contact with while doing our most excellent work, what would we ever want to do instead?  It's so Kul, like awesome!

I love how I went from talking about hair to talking about Nepal.  I am kind of all over the place.  But hey, this is my blog and I'll do what I want!

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Dirty Heads Unite

Recently, I have been obsessed with ombre hair.  I love that it is subtle and very natural, but not boring in the least.  Also, you wouldn't have to go into the salon to get the color touched up very often since that's kind of the whole idea.  I kept seeing it all over and decided to try it myself. I'll show you the pictures I brought in as inspiration. 

My grandma asked what color I was going to get done.  I showed her this picture. 
"That's pretty sexy!" she said.  Yes, probably because this is a gorgeous supermodel with a plunging neckline. Oh, Grandma! ; )

I totally have a girl crush on Mila Kunis here.  Isn't her hair perfection?

I don't know what word I would use to describe this.  Not sexy, that's for sure!  Yeah! 
{Thanks, Rose!}

Now it's taken years to finally get a grasp of how to do my hair so it doesn't look like a complete choo choo wreck.  I'll share some tips that have helped me for the fellow hair challenged friends out there.  I stumbled upon this amazing hairdresser's blog based out of NYC.  She has tutorials set to sweet music.  Check it out!  The great thing about this style is it looks even better after three or four days.  That's right.  I throw my hair up in a loose bun overnight.  The next day I just pop in the music, do a little dance, and head out the door.  Fabulous! My hair isn't super greasy to begin with and so after a couple days I can just spray a little dry shampoo on the roots.  I'm converted!  It's good to avoid stripping your hair of all those good ol' natural oils, don'tcha know.  Happy hair!

Monday, January 24, 2011

The One With the Missed Opportunity

Watch this sweet little video. 

If only we could all just seize the moment and tell each other how we really feel in love and in life.  I wonder how many times this actually happens?  This love story that never was.  Fear and insecurities always seem to win in the end, but they don't have to. 

There is something to be said about writing.  You hit send and you can't go back.  You don't know where it will go or who will see it.  Remember that little something called the letter?  There was no backspace.  If you made a mistake or didn't like how it sounded you would have to throw the whole thing away and start from scratch!  Imagine all the paper! Oh, the poor little trees.  (Do you rip up your scrap paper or bunch it up in a ball?  I'm a crumple it up in a ball kind of gal.  That way I can use it to throw at someone or something.  Entertained in the little things and also very resourceful, dont you think?)  Isn't there something grand about a letter?  Getting a letter in the mail is probably the best gift anyone could give, like a precious artifact.  That is, if it's a good letter.  On the other hand, have you ever sent a letter that you regret?  Maybe a few biting words that will continue to be read over and over.  Makes you think, not to get all serious on you or anything.  Good thing, I have a nifty little edit button for this blog.  Phew. 

So lesson learned.  Be bold!  Oh, and don't send super vague text messages.  That's not cool. 

Saturday, January 22, 2011

A Weekend of Lolloping

 Every two months or so, there is a weekend when there is actually a few things to do in Tucson or a number of plans.  Most days, we stay at home knitting and watching Netflix with our parents.  Sad, I know. =)  Most of our friends do not live here or have moved away.  You know who you are.  Until that one weekend comes along.  Let me share what I learned from this weekend. 

1. People of the elderly variety should not go to indie concerts.  We went with some friends to see The Ghost of a Saber Tooth Tiger at Club Congress.  There were surprisingly quite a number of our gray headed friends.  They probably came out just because it's John Lennon's son and they wanted to hear him play a few covers.  It was requested, but appropriately denied.  As we were waiting for the opening act to begin, a lady came up to Syd like they were old friends and said, "Now that we are in here, what do we do now?"  As another lady was exclaiming, "It's standing room only!"  Not to mention, the elderly couple enjoying themselves a little bit too much with some major public displays of affection.  Awkward!  Concerts.  Another great people watching opportunity.  So entertaining.  

Listen to this. Now. 


2.  I learned a new word.  I signed up for's word a day emails.  As an interpreter and as a person, it's always important to continue to increase your vocabulary.  The only problem is that sends out the most random words that you will never ever use.  Let today's word be an example for you.

 lollop \LOL-uhp\, verb:
1. To move forward with a bounding, drooping motion. 
2. To hang loosely; droop; dangle.

Okay, if someone can demonstrate that first definition for me, you will be my hero.  I'm pretty sure it would be quite amusing.  Why don't we all start using lollop in everyday conversation?  I dare you.  

3.  If it's Western, I'm not going to like it.  Okay, this isn't anything new.  My grandma invited us to Gaslight Theater tonight.  My grandma has more of a social life than we do.  It's funny.  Not that I didn't like it, but it wasn't near as funny as the shows I've seen there in the past.  I believe it had something to do with my innate dislike for western themed shows, music, style, etc.  I'm pretty open to trying new things.  I even went to the Rodeo one year with some cowboy friends.  I've tried to like it, but it's just not happening folks.  Although, it just seems to follow me wherever I go.  We were going to the Symphony in Malaysia.  Guess what?  It was western themed music.  The whole night.  Western.  Music.  We were in Asia and we couldn't escape from it.  

That's all for now.  I learned a lot.  Right? 

Thursday, January 20, 2011

I'm Not Really a Waitress

Let's talk about jobs.  I like mine.  I'm a sign language interpreter.  I work freelance at the University of Arizona here and there.  That's fun.  I get to be on campus, mingle with the students, and people watch.  The UA campus is probably the only place that has green grass and trees that are well groomed in town.  It's so nice to take a book in between classes, sit on one of the benches, and soak up that fresh collegiate air.  

Most of the time, I work at a video relay service interpreting deaf people's phone calls.  Imagine every possible conversation someone might have on the phone.  I might have to interpret it.  It's a weird job.  Can't say much on the subject since it's all highly confidential.  I even have a nifty card I have to swipe to gain entrance into the office.  Ooh!  No one can know what goes on behind those doors.  ;)

One thing I don't like about my job is the dress code.  Interpreters must wear plain, solid color shirts, contrasting color from their skin tone.  For me that means a whole lot of black and navy in various shades.  No jewelry.  No fingernail polish.  No bright colors.  No adorable floral patterns or stripes.  No style.  I try my best to work with what I've got, but it gets old pretty fast.  

Today was the first of three days off of work this week, so I painted my nails I'm Not Really a Waitress red and decided to break all the rules.  Because I can and because it's not really breaking all the rules.  Floral, stripes, and bright colors.  Let's put them all together.  

Hey, I found a tree! 

In other news, I bought a Wii.  I know I am only about three years behind.  Behind per usual.  Remember those Razor phones?  Everyone had them.  They were cute and thin and pink.  Remember?  Well, I had an enormous, yellow Nextel phone that looked like it belonged on a construction site, durable enough to withstand dropping from a twenty story building.  Then the slightly less obnoxious flip phone with no color display until finally I bought an iPhone.  I wasn't behind on that one, but it was time to get with the times.  So anyways, long story short I got a Wii.  Got my Bollywood and Charleston on playing Wii Just Dance 2 tonight.  It's pretty great.  That is all.

Hooray for days off!! 

Wednesday, January 19, 2011


Hi!  I had some time today to go out and take a few pictures.  I wanted to show you all some of our latest projects.  Growing up, my mom taught us how to knit.  She is super crafty and taught us all we know in our amateur crafty ways.  She also taught us how to spin our own wool to make our own yarn.  Yeah, we grew up in the middle of nowhere Wisconsin and we were home schooled.  It's kind of cool in a way though, right?  Yes, when you can make cute scarves like this one.  That one.  Right up there! I made that.  I'm just slightly proud of myself, because for one I had never knit cables before and that I even finished is pretty exciting.  I get distracted easily and when I was younger would start a lot of projects but never finish.  I guess I've learned some patience at this ripe old age, emphasis on some.  

I think my shirt says "See the Joy" in French.  That's cool.
If I wore a shirt that said "See the Joy" in English.  That would be lame. 
Funny how that works!

Now while I was knitting my little scarfy up there, my sister knit a skirt!  Now are you aware of how much yarn goes for nowadays?  Goodness Gracious, it's a racket!  So in order to save some bucks, she went to the thrift store and bought a red sweater.  It looked something like this.  

She unraveled all of that red yarn, wound it into skeins, and knit, knit, knit.  Until that turned into this!!

Syd, you are a knitting rockstar. 
Seems somewhat wrong to see knitting and rockstar in the same sentence, but I'm just stating the facts of the matter. 

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

I'm a Map! I'm a Map! A Scratch-Off Map!

This year has been tough.  We haven't gone anywhere international and there are still no definite plans to in the near future.  Not that we don't have plans, just that we are not seeing our plans come to any reality.  Not just yet.  No tickets have been bought or glorious dates set to look forward to.  In the meantime, I would love to get my hands on this scratch-off map!  I could mark off where I've been in the states and around the world, thinking about where I have been, not dwelling on where I am not going now.  Sigh.

You can buy it here for me.  I kid.  I kid.

Since I'm not going anywhere for a little while, I need to live vicariously through you readers!  Any fabulous trips coming up?  Do share!  Or are you just wanderlusting like me?

Monday, January 17, 2011

I've Got Mad Chopstick Skills

We tried a new Vietnamese restaurant today.  My mouth was watering for some Bun (pronounced boohn).  The minute I walked into the restaurant I knew I was going to be disappointed.  I was right.  You want to know how I knew?  I'm sure you do! 

I walked into the restaurant and did not see a single Asian person.  Am I the only one who when going to any ethnic restaurant takes comfort in seeing hostess and waiters of that ethnicity working there?  The best is if the restaurant is packed and you are the only non *enter whichever ethnicity here* customer there.  You know it's going to be good!  The more stares as you walk into the restaurant the better.  Seeing all white people in an ethnic restaurant bums me out and makes me automatically discredit the authenticity of the food.  If the restaurant is decorated very modern or decorated at all for the comfort of Americans, you will probably end up paying for it.  The one Thai place we go to in town has cut outs of what looks to be old Thai fashion magazines under the glass.  Fancy! 

And always use chopsticks.  It tastes better that way!  I like to see the expression of shock when they see we can actually handle our chopsticks without looking like fools.  Yes, I did just pick up that tiny speck of rice with my chopsticks.  What what!  Applause is in order. 

Our bun looked sad and pathetic compared to this deliciousness!

What's your favorite unusual meal? 

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Madewell For Me, Please

 Okay, I know you all might have seen these pictures before, but I am still obsessed.  If only I could have all these outfits and wear them exactly like this.  Except I wouldn't stand there holding a ginormous flag, yeah I'm thinking not. I would make the dresses about five inches longer.  Perfect!  I love the styling.  The slightly messy hair is great.  They look like they couldn't care less if there are a few hairs out of place.  Imperfection is oh so pretty.  Don't even get me started on the glasses!  

Too bad Madewell is a little spendy.

Here are a few shots from the Spring line, which are equally drool worthy.  The glasses are back, too!  

I love all the menswear inspired pieces.  Now I wouldn't buy all of this, or would I? 

It's fun to use these photos as inspiration, dig into your own closet, mix and match and make it your own.  You can often times find something similar at a thrift store or Target with a more reasonable price tag.  Hip Hip Hooray for Target!  Now you better have known to say it like the French would (even though I couldn't figure out how to put in the special character, someone help me please) because everything sounds better in French.  Plus, it would be all cool and rhyme and stuff.  Yeah.

Friday, January 14, 2011

But My Favorite Season is Still Fall

Now almost every state is getting hit with horrendous snowstorms!  Everyone complaining with each new snowflake that falls and counting the days till summer.  Meanwhile, we had two glorious weeks of under 60 degree weather and we're back up in the 70s.  I really hate it that I now dislike what most people would consider beautiful weather, but such is the case.  When something is a constant, you don't appreciate it as much.  Back in Wisconsin, when there was a nice sunny day, you would take that great day and do something with it.  Summer was something to look forward to.  It was a special time with visits to the lake, amusement parks, outdoor festivals, fireflies and ladybugs.  Why does Arizona not have any ladybugs or fireflies?  I kind of miss those little guys.  Then came the changing of the leaves and fresh, brisk autumn air, followed by the first magical snowfall.  Seasons are exciting and you can't help but appreciate each one for what it is.

Now I'm not saying I would move back to Wisconsin, because those winters were brutal and almost endless.  Although winter brought snowball fights, sledding, wood burning in the fireplace, hot chocolate, blankets, and ice skating.  Summer here is pretty much as brutal and endless.  I can't think of anything that makes me look forward to it.  Could someone help me out with this?

You could say, you failed to mention all the negative things in each season.  There are plenty of them, but this blog is for fanciful things.  Mosquitoes or frostbite are far from fanciful.

Now for your viewing pleasure, this amazing winter party.  Your own private ice skating rink in the woods with sparkling lights, bonfire, and homemade marsh mellows in your hot chocolate.  Yes, please!


These pictures instantly brought me back to winter in Wisconsin.  We used to live on five acres in the woods pretty much in the middle of nowhere.  There was a pond not too far yonder and in the winter we use to trudge through the snow with our skates slung over our shoulders.  We would have to shovel the snow off the ice and it wasn't perfectly groomed, but it was our own private rink in the middle of the woods.  It wasn't a deep lake, so no worries of thin ice and drowning in freezing cold water like they show so often in the movies.  Now looking back, we didn't do it near enough.  As kids, you don't really think about how good you had it.  What?  Doesn't everyone have their own little pond to ice skate on and five acres of woods to explore as their own natural jungle gym?  That was pretty sweet. 

Oh, all my friends and family now enjoying those lovely winter temperatures and storms, please don't hate.  Love you!!

Thursday, January 13, 2011

Little Shop Around the Corner

Winding in and out of little alleyways and piazzas while in Rome was one of my favorite things.  The anticipation of what might lie right around that corner.  The store fronts all lined up in pretty little rows.  Every one with their own unique heart and personality.  Few chain restaurants and behemoth department stores to be found.  It's interesting how the tables sitting outside on the piazza are actually more desirable and come with a price.  As you go further into the restaurant, towards the kitchen, the price goes down for the table.  Here you can barely get anyone to sit on the patio without some grumbling.  Sad.

I came across these pictures from Paris.  I want to go all the more so now.  All the thought and care that went into creating these shop fronts, almost an overload for your senses.

You must not let all the gorgeous colors, lights, and sounds pull you in and make you overlook some of the other hole in the wall places that don't have all the glitz and glamour.  

For example, in Malaysia there were the upper scale restaurants mostly catering to some of the foreigners with the appropriate Western decor and ambiance.  Better to eat where the locals do to get the best food for your buck.  Most places looked like this.  


What's interesting is that one shop might be amazing, best food ever and the one right next door would be dirty or sub par.  Made it very hard for us to know where to go since they all look pretty similar, as you can see.  Somehow we were steered in the right direction though.  Kept our Malaysian friends close by.  Only got sick once, even after eating at the street stalls at the night market.  Some of the best places I've been are the hole in the wall, nothing to them places.  It's fun to find the diamonds in the rough.  So much better to step out of your comfort zone and try new things.  The pretty places definitely have their place too. 

Wednesday, January 12, 2011

Feeling Congested

I've been feeling a bit congested.  Somehow saying I feel congested makes my current state sound better and also prevents people from jumping down my throat for going out with a touch of a cold and spreading germs.  I work tonight and then I'm home free, for three days at least.  Also, I'm checking my Ph levels and popping those vitamins like no body's business.  I will kill you, Congestion!

I decided to stay home today, sleep in, check my ph's, pop those vitamins, cozy up under a blanket, and watch Gilmore Girls.  This show just doesn't get old!  Gilmore Girls.  Watch it.  Love it.  I've decided I probably could move back to a small town if it was like Stars Hollow.  Charming little downtown, unique shops where everyone knows you by name, quirky people, adorable old Victorian to call home, and only a hop skip and jump over to NYC or Boston.  Yup, I could deal with that.

Stars Hollow 

Still I am drawn to the city.  You can get the same amount of charm in some of the unique neighborhoods hidden in the big city, just with loads more people to share it with.  The city attracts the explorer in me with never ending nooks and crannies to find yourself in, wherein to discover precious treasures.  I like the constant hum of people going about their daily lives.  It's comforting.  You are able to share fleeting moments with complete strangers when you least expect it, whether it be walking that stretch of street with them, passing in the subway, or at the local cafe.  People are fascinating and can make an impact on you that can stick with you forever.  Living in Kuala Lumpur for five months gave us a brief taste of that kind of life and it was delicious.  Now back here, I'm feeling congested. 

My city apartment if I was rich like Helena Christensen. Swooning!
{Images by The Selby, via here}

Monday, January 10, 2011

The Bow


I saw this and fell in love with this scarf tied in an enormous bow!  Adorable.  I had never thought of tying my scarf like this and proceeded to try it with a leopard print scarf I already owned.  Let me tell you, it was a hit.  I got a number of compliments.  Yay, always makes you feel like you are doing something right.  I really love how it looks with that high bun.  I've tried a bun like this in the past, but with my fine hair it comes off looking like a pathetic, little mess on my head.  The fact that I have a really long, skinny neck and small head that sometimes doesn't look proportionate to my body might be a deterring factor for me to really be able to pull this off.  I actually found a tutorial recently on how to create a party bun like this one.  I might give it a try.  I'll let you know how it goes. 

Sunday, January 9, 2011

The One Where We Were Almost Taken

When we were in Thailand, we took a flight from Bangkok to Surat Thani.  We were trying to avoid high costs of a direct flight from Bangkok to Koh Samui.  The easy, direct ways always are just that, easy and direct.  I prefer the uncomfortable and long bus/ferry rides, don't you?  Builds character.  Plus, we would never have had this story to tell.

We were one of the first to get on the bus at the airport and while we were waiting for the other passengers to load up and find their seats, we noticed these two European guys.  These were the type of guys that look kind of mysterious with their rugged good looks and aviator glasses.  The type that if you dared talk to them would have you with their witty rhetoric and charm, or maybe just with their smile, that might do it too.  You'd like to know who they are, what they do, and where they've been.  The types that would talk to naive girls traveling alone, then tell their thug bosses, later taking you as their slaves.  We wouldn't have let our imaginations run wild, if they weren't chatting it up with our bus drivers, like they had known them for years, or had not pointed at us while we walked towards the bus.  Something was seriously wrong with this picture.  The guys were the last to get on the bus and decided to take the seats in front of us.  Lovely.  We whispered to each other not to say anything about where we were staying, just in case.

The ride was going smooth, well not really we were on a bus.  About halfway through, this Thai man comes up to us from the back of the bus.  He's holding a map of the island and frantically asking us where we are staying.
"Where you stay?  Where you stay?  I can help you.  Cheap way."
"We are staying on the island."
"Where?  Where hotel?" He's persistent.  Mysterious Euro guys ears perking up.
"Why do you need to know?"
"I help you.  Cheap, you get off in city, take other car, go to ferry, cheap."
"Umm, no."
The next thing we know the bus stops in the middle of nowhere and the man is jumping off.  He's gone.  He didn't go up to any of the other passengers, but we were also the only girls traveling alone.

I was still thinking, if these Euro guys are going to our island they could follow our taxi and easily find out where we are staying.  Heart pounding, just a little.  They got off at a different stop than us.  We went on our merry way to the ferry and on to our delightful bungalow on Koh Samui.

Travel stories are the best!

No one was taken, thank goodness because our dad is no Liam Neeson, he said so himself.  Yes, our parents watched Taken right before we flew halfway around the world to Southeast Asia.  They still let us go.  And no, we did not tell them this story until we were safely back in the States.

Saturday, January 8, 2011

I Saw You Lingering Still

I thought I'd share a little music with you to start your day off right.  This song has pretty much been on repeat in my head since I heard it a few months ago.  I'll just start singing it randomly.  Makes me think of a warm summer day, sipping lemonade, swinging on a porch swing and listening to this song.    

Lingering Still - She and Him
Also, this album cover art is adorable. 

I still love their song Why Do You Let Me Stay Here?  We played it to death while we were in Malaysia and it will forever bring to mind our time spent there.  If only, just once life was like a musical.  We could go to the bank, wearing a pretty dress and suddenly break into dance.  Oh how lovely that would be!

Why Do You Let Me Stay Here? - She and Him

Friday, January 7, 2011

Hey I know, let's call it Cup Cakes!

You know what you need at the end of another mediocre day of monotony?  Frozen Custard.  What?  Did you think I was going to say cupcakes?  Frozen custard is what we would normally have if we were not in this certain ho-hum town in the southwest where there are no custard shoppes to be found.  If you have not had frozen custard, you are missing out.  There will be a post about this to come, but not now, not yet.  Cupcakes will have to do!  

The other day we needed that little something something to cheer us up.  Cupcakes are happy times.  What was that new cupcake place called?  Beep boop beep *googling* Oh that's right, Cup Cakes.  You named it Cup Cakes and we still couldn't remember what that cupcakes place was called.  Nice.  

Google directed me to another blog, Tucson on the Cheap.  They had worked out a deal with Cup Cakes.  On Mondays mention Tucson on the Cheap and they will give you buy one get one free.  It was Monday. 

Almost too pretty to eat. Almost.

We tried Les Deux and Hollywood.  Les Deux is a chocolate cupcake with peanut butter frosting.    Hollywood is their red velvet cupcake.  Skip Hollywood, get Les Deux.  For red velvet, go to The Red Velvet Cupcake Factory.  These people really need to look into a creative name director.  Yes, I have tried all the cupcake places in town.  Don't judge.  And if you are in California, go to Sprinkles.  Heading to New York?  Buttercup, don't be a sell out and go to Magnolia's.  I don't go more than every few months, I swear!  If I did, it wouldn't be special anymore now would it. 

Frozen custard on the other hand... 

Thursday, January 6, 2011

And So It Begins

I never was good at introductions.  I'm going to talk about balloons instead.  Okay?  You don't have to understand it, but you will love it, you really will.  Let's go back to when we were kids, when getting a balloon was the most exciting event of the day or week even.  Helium filled balloons were hours of fun and when the helium started to fade the fun just continued.  You could play for hours trying not to let the balloon hit the ground.  Of course, we must never forget the silliness that inevitably ensued from inhaling the helium.  So simple, yet delightful! 

Balloons have gotten a bad rep which saddens me.  They are usually used as tacky, cliche party decorations seen in bunches taped to tables and random spots in the room or marking where the party is, outside tied around the mailbox.  Hmm, nice balloon archway. Time to go. 

Balloons are also associated with clowns.  Now I've never been scared of clowns, but why do they seem to always have to be all up in your personal space.  Rude.  Kinda like the guys in cartoon costumes at amusement parks.  Back off, Buddy. 

But wait, all hope is not lost for balloons and their loveliness.  
Now an ode to the grown-up's balloon.

I'm mesmerized.  This party would have to be amazing.

 {via Oh Joy}
             Picnic that dreams are made of.

I love this. Balloons instead of flowers. {via Jubilee Events}

Hooray for balloons! Ok, bye bye. 

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