Friday, July 5, 2013

Filler Post

I'm working on a new post but it isn't ready yet. I've decided to keep you all entertained with a gripping photograph collection that I call "The Many Sleeping Positions of Ringo."


"What else could you want this throw pillow for?"

"Don't bother me when I'm trying to decompress."

"You have NO idea what kind of day I've had."

She might be judging me or wanting to high-five.

"Do not pester me with your love, human."

"The Loaf"

"The Dead Weight"

"I'm not stuck, I'm resting."

My new post will be ready soon, I promise.

Saturday, June 8, 2013

The Pintester Movement Part 2/ Great Ideas Always Strike Later/ Best Friday Night Ever

It's a Friday night and I'm staying in. This is by far the best decision I've made all week. It's going to be a fun-filled evening of crafts and Coke Zero and veggie chips and hummus. I regret nothing!

I was pondering over how my challenge pin for The Pintester Movement went and had a beyond brilliant idea as I was listening to Tom Waits.

The exact train of thought was: "Sharpies and rubbing alcohol have so much potential to be really cool but I'm NEVER going to wear that shirt...Man, Tom Waits writes good lyrics...Why don't I have any cake? Or at least pie????...What if I wrote Tom Waits lyrics in Sharpie and drop alcohol on it on the back of that shirt I used for the experiment pin and see if it turns out as awesome as it should?"

Since I was never EVER going to wear that shirt in public, first because of the bacon grease stain and secondly because the Sharpie/alcohol experiment didn't work out too bueno, I decided to cut a square out of the back of the shirt and have at it. Also, I was looking for an excuse not to go to the gym. I obviously don't take my mission to "not get fat and die" too seriously sometimes.

There's a lyric in the Tom Waits song 'Black Market Baby' that I find catchy and amusing. Hark, here it is:
I started by writing the words on the t-shirt in Sharpie.

Well, it's "blending" I guess.

The finished product. I actually think it looks pretty nifty.

I think "whiskey" came out the best.

Ringo was so enthralled.

All in all, I think it looks much better than my first attempt using Sharpies and alcohol to mimic tye-dyeing. I can't talk anymore right now, I have to get back to my couch and watch more 'Game of Thrones'. I'm in love with Jon Snow and am not ashamed. The best men are almost always fictional characters...sigh. 

Sunday, June 2, 2013

Stuff and Things

I got a cat on Friday! I adopted her from the humane society and I love her. Her name is Ringo and she's very sweet and fluffy and meows like an Ewok. I left her alone for the first day and then on Saturday night she started exploring the apartment and even got on the couch with me for awhile. Of course she wants nothing to do with the toys I bought her but is fascinated by blankets. I'm a parent now you guys, I understand the world (completely kidding).

She seems to be adjusting well.

Here are more random pictures I've taken over the past few weeks. Some of these (I think) are really cool and I don't want to lose them if my phone dies or something. Preparation is always the key to being prepared.
The sky was really pretty during one of my early evening strolls.

The park across from my apartment is pretty, too.

Irises are the best flower.

Sloss Furnace yesterday.

Angles and lights are cool.

This reminded me of the Lion King and I'm not exactly sure why.

Apparently, I really like clouds. This would be a great watercolor painting.

Thursday, May 30, 2013

The Pintester Movement!

There's a really funny site called The Pintester that I recently discovered (but everyone else probably knew about it lightyears before). Holla at ya, Sonja! I don't know why I said that and now I feel kind of awkward. Hmm. Awkward internet silence.

Aaaanyways, Sonja Foust, creator and writer on The Pintester, created something called The Pintester Movement which encourages people to finally break down and try that one pin from Pinterest that they've been meaning to do for ages but keep staring at longingly from afar. I signed up for it because I was bored and it seemed like a cool idea and I was feeling impulsive and I figured it would make for fun reading later. Plus Sonja Foust is really funny and provides amazing commentary, which I'm looking forward to.

Here's what I decided my challenge pin would be:

I've had it pinned for forever and kept meaning to get to it but didn't. If you link out to the instructions, it looks simple enough. The lady even let her young child do it, so I figured it couldn't be all that hard...but I was still skeptical because the internet is full of lies! No, it's not really full of lies. But this thing doesn't seem to be very well monitored so you never know if something is true or not until you try it for yourself.

So I did. I gathered an old white t-shirt that I never wear because I spilled bacon grease on the side (don't ask how that happened), my glorious collection of Sharpies, and a bottle of rubbing alcohol together to make this potential disaster happen. The instructions called for one of those wee little dropper things but I don't have one and I don't want to buy one since I've never needed one up until now. Also, I'm cheap. I figured using the tip of a paintbrush to make the alcohol drop would work just as well.

I got all the stuff together and then remembered I needed a plastic cup and a rubber band. I can only do so much at once, you guys. So I went and got those and started drawing designs on the t-shirt like the instructions said to. The small child looked like she was really into it so I thought it would be fun...or I'd inadvertently get high on Sharpie fumes. Either way, it's a win.

Yay, supplies:
(please note the dramatic lighting)

Yay, drawing designs:

After the alcohol was dropped on:


All in all I think it looks okay. The main thing is to stick with colors with similar tones and in the same hue family so you don't end up with brown blotches. I'm not sure how the 8 year old girl got her designs to spread and not show  random lines in the design like mine turned out, so if you figure that out do let me know.

So I guess this is kind of a turned out like the directions said it would but I'm left somewhat unimpressed. It was kind of like seeing "The Great Gatsby" all over again because after it was all over I was left sitting in my seat thinking,"'s over now? That's it?" and then I walked away confused and twinged with disappointment. (FYI, the book is waaaaaaaaaaaay better than the new movie. The older movie was waaaay better than the new movie too, but not "waaaaaaaaaaay" better than the book.)

It's okay though, I got to smell Sharpies and sanitize my hands with all that rubbing alcohol simultaneously so it wasn't a waste.

Saturday, May 25, 2013

The Plight of the Twentysomething Part 2

I decided my last post was stupid and whiney and a waste of a post so now I'm trying to redeem myself. It's not like I have any real problems anyway. My job has its share of problems: the stress is through the roof and the pay is awful but at least I have a job that enables me to have my own apartment and car and tasty foodstuffs. Things could definitely be worse, but it's just frustrating to feel like you're going nowhere professionally and it's easy to lose perspective (looking at you, Kardashians) of what legit hardships are.

Things will get better eventually and I'd rather struggle now and have all these experiences rather than when I'm older and too stubborn to learn anything from it. But sometimes I definitely deserve credit for managing to not be a violent psychopath, ahahaha. That was a joke, guys.

I can't believe it's almost June already. The year is almost half over! I've decided to do a review of my new year's resolutions (yes, I wrote some down. Yes, I'm lame.). Also, I don't have any finished arts or crafts to show you so I might as well do this. I put together some homemade pickles today so after they sit for a few days I'll test them and then that will be a more arty/crafty/foodie post.

Anyway, here we go:
-Be more creative- Working on it. It's more of a work in progress than a destination.
-Be healthier- working on it. I've been making serious strides to eat better and go to the gym like a boss.
-Get a new job that I enjoy and find fulfilling and like I'm contributing to something (which will lead to drinking less)- working on it.
-Broaden social circle- have definitely done and am working on broadening it even more.
-Dress better/i.e. look less hobo-esque- Meh, I'm working on it I guess. I need a new job that pays better before I can buy new clothes, har.
-Start a blog- Done!
-Be more self reliant and independent- I've definitely made strides in this area, like battling the Apartment Mouse all by myself. I won, by the way.
-Seek out new experiences- Well, I went into Forever 21 the other day. I say I owned this one.
-Make definite plans to travel to visit friends who live elsewhere- Seriously guys, get ready 'cause I'm coming for you! (Prepare fun activities (Funtivities!) Alex and MJ and Brittany and Kevin!)
-Be happier- I think I'm happier than I was a few months ago but I've learned happiness is never something you just are. It's something you have to work for and make happen along the way. Again, it's a work in progress and not a destination.
-Be more awesome- Totally owned.

I almost sound wise and like I have myself together. Psssh. Here's a picture of Birmingham at dusk from the night last April when me and my friend Kevin (he's an awesome musician by the way. Check him out!) snuck onto an apartment building's roof and ate potato chips and considered spitting down onto traffic. See, I'm really not all that wise.

Monday, May 20, 2013

The Plight of the Twentysomething

I hadn't realized a month had passed since my last entry. Such madness! Time goes by surprisingly fast when one is in the throes of a quarter-life crisis. Seriously, why is being a twentysomething so hard?? Aren't these supposed to be the "best years of our lives?"

 Maybe looking back one day they will be but right now things are just unnecessarily hard and I'm sick of it. I'm sick of having to stress about money because my big girl full time job pays pathetically little, I'm sick of constantly applying for better jobs and never hearing anything, or worse, actually getting to interview for my dream job and not getting it and I'm tired of losing people. It's like trying to claw your way out of a self-loathing stresshole of mid-twenties angst, only to fall right back down to where you started.

Should I move and try to start over? Should I remain optimistic that things won't suck forever? Who knows. I know I don't know.

I didn't mean for this to turn into a rant or pity-party but sometimes it helps to get these things out.

I don't want this to be a depressing blog, so here's a picture of me a few weeks ago (before my quarter life crisis began) owning at an Etch-A-Sketch.

Saturday, April 20, 2013

Random Pictures

Saturdays are really the best day. Friday is still a workday but the hope of Saturday keeps your spirit alive. Sunday is too close to Monday but is the perfect buffer day to make Saturday distanced from the beginning of the work week.

This morning I decided to go to the farmer's market a few minutes from my apartment and then pop in the nearby coffee shop for a latte (ugh. everything about that sentence sounds hipsterly). I got a few vegetables and a latte and the barista made the top all pretty! I think this is the first time I've ever been the recipient of latte art. I was pretty enthralled but had to play it all cool like, "oh, that dude can make designs out of milk. Yawn." So I waited until I was in my car to get a picture.

Last week, at the same farmer's market, I bought a little peppermint plant. It was so cute and adorable and I was afraid it would be root-bound if it spent too long in that little plastic cube container they sell all baby plants in. So I replanted it in a bigger pot and less than a week later I have a peppermint plant monster!

My adorable baby plant is all grown up! You really do have to cherish the time you have with them when they're small; they grow up so fast. Har har.

I decided to be a vandal and pick some blossoms from the azalea bush that's blooming beside my apartment building. Regular rebel without a cause over here. I put those blossoms with this purple flower I had been growing and, hark, a bouquet! I put them in a vase and feel so good about myself. Nothing screams "I'm an adult and have my life together" more than fresh flowers in a container that you remembered to put water in. I believe they also call that a vase.

Table Made of Upcycled Magazines

This post begins with the phrase most everyone, well females anyway, has said at some point: "I saw this  pin on Pinterest...".

Like so many others before me, I saw a pin on Pinterest (Shameless Plug: You should follow me there, by the way! End of Shameless Plug) that claimed one could take old magazines and create a table-like structure out of them by folding them into themselves. Here's their picture:

I was equal parts intrigued and skeptical but decided to give it a whirl. It's one of those things that I thought had potential to have potential, but was realistic enough to not trust quite everything that I see on Pinterest. Luckily, my Mom is a mild magazine hoarder so she graciously donated several magazines to my cause and I figured since it would be free I had nothing to loose.

And alas, It worked! Behold!

All you do is fold about 10 pages at a time back and tuck them into the magazine's binding. Then stand up the fan-like creations and put the spines against each other and stack them up. I used 3 magazines for each tier of my table and it's perfectly sturdy. Obviously don't put anything heavy or breakable on the top just in case a 'support magazine' unravels and compromises the overall structural integrity I find it's great for holding potted plants. For the different tiers you have to be sure to use magazines that are all the same height or else it will be wobbly and not stack correctly.

I think it turned out well and am pretty fond of it....even though Paula Deen's face is peeping out at me in a leering fashion. Seriously Paula, you're not fooling anyone with those contacts. One of her agents or handlers or whoever needs to tell homegirl that it's okay she doesn't have naturally glacier blue colored eyes.

This would be even cooler made out of books but ain't nobody got time for that (also read as: ain't nobody have that many hardback books of the same height).

For the record, I did finally get rid of those dead tulips on the left.

Sunday, April 7, 2013

An Open Letter

Dear Writers of  "The Walking Dead,"

     Seriously? What was that season finale about? I mean, come on!!!!! It's been a week and I still can't believe we were let down so ridiculously.
     And that whole thing about 27 people dying? Other than Andrea (who should have been offed in like season 2 at the latest), the people who died were mere incidental characters!! Don't tease me like that! At least you didn't kill Daryl. But if Daryl was killed off then I'm sure the show would lose a lot of female viewers. I would probably stop watching too, out of general principle for upholding my undying love for Norman Reedus.

    Season 4 had better be epic in every sense of the word or I'm going to be forced to send a strongly worded email.

A Disgruntled Fan

And while I'm writing open letters, here's another one:

Dear Starbucks,

Bring back the Vanilla Spice latte or I'll bombard you with strongly worded emails about my need for it.


A Coffee Addict That YOU CREATED!

And now here's a picture of a bird feeder with potato chips in it instead of birdseed. Since I live in the South, it's a pretty safe bet those are Golden Flake chips. I thought it was funny.

Wednesday, March 27, 2013

Make ALL THE THINGS Mercury Glass!

I'll give you a cookie if you got that Hyperbole and a Half reference. Anywho, I've recently developed a mild obsession with mercury glass. It all started with these three votive holders that my Mom bought for me in Jamestown, Virginia.

I put them on my coffee table and have pined for more mercury glass like a zombie pines for human flesh. (I seriously watch too much of "The Walking Dead." I'm also a little bit in love with Norman Reedus.) Then I saw a tutorial about how you can paint your own mercury glass using Krylon Looking Glass spray paint. I tried it out for myself on some cheap glasses I got at the thrift store and it really works! I was feeling extra fancy so I decided to use India ink to tint the glasses first.This is really easy. All you do is mix two parts of the color India ink you want to one part acetone and use a paintbrush to apply it to the outside of the glass. (You could do it on the inside but I knew I was going to put a candle in the glass and thought it best to avoid starting a fire) The acetone thins the ink out and makes it adhere to the glass and acts as a sealant. Once the India ink had dried and sat for a few days, I applied the vinegar mixture and spray paint and hark! Colored mercury glass! 



What was supposed to be red but the ink got diluted too much and it turned out pink but that's okay!

I liked the mercury glass look so much that I decided to try it out on an old brown lamp I have. The lamp was a really weird brown faux-finish with a slight texture to it (it was a donation from a friend having a garage sale). Because it wasn't clear like the glasses, the look didn't turn out 100% like mercury glass, but it's still cool. Plus, anything is better than a weird brown faux-finish.
I made the lampshade too, by the way. Not bragging or nothin'.

Here's a close up:

All in all, I'm pretty satisfied with all my mercury glass endeavors.

Monday, March 25, 2013

Table Paintin'

So, breakups are hard. (And then anyone who will ever read this mumbles "Duh, Amanda.") I'll be completely fine for days or even weeks and then crippling feelings of despairing despair appear from nowhere with the sole mission of strangling the feelings of happiness I've cultivated to cope with said breakup.

This happened a few nights ago while I was calmly minding my own business, eating veggie chips out of the bag and watching like 7 episodes of "30 Rock" on Netflix because I was too lazy to browse for something else. Hey, I'd been at work all day and my Instant Queue was aaaaaaaalllllll the way over there.

Then I got all depressed for no reason and started freaking out about being forever alone. I usually text some friends when this feeling strikes, but I'm trying to wean myself off that because I know if the same friend kept doing that to me eventually I would run out of patience. So I decided to paint the top of my dining room table instead of badgering friends with my emotions for the millionth time. To be fair, it's a really old table that some of my parent's friends donated to me when I moved off on my ill-fated voyage to Savannah, GA. The top was pretty scratched up and had some wear and tear on it, so painting it really improved things. I used a light grey interior wall paint that I had laying around and then painted the pattern with a darker grey that I mixed up.

Here's an action shot of the finished table top:

Table tops don't do a lot of action packed things. Here's a closeup of the pattern:

And here's a shot of it with candles and these glasses that I tinted and then painted to look like mercury glass and put candles in (I'll do a post about those eventually). Candles are one of the things that I keep in my apartment to fool visitors into thinking that I'm adulty and have my life together.

The paint should hold up pretty well but I'm going to put a clear varnish on it just for extra protection since I won't be able to mix up the exact shade of dark grey again.

So, kids. If you're dealing with a breakup, you should paint your table instead of inflicting your feelings on your friends. You'll feel better afterwards and have a cool project to show for it.