Friday, November 1, 2013

We've got spirit, yes we do! We've got spirit, how 'bout you?

Guess what week it is (was).  Spirit Week!  I love spirit week.  Unfortunately, I was sick on Monday and so I didn't get to participate in 'Merica Monday.  Tuesday was Twin Tuesday, which I did dress up for, but my twin was sick and wasn't at school.  (Silly Eleanore.)  However, starting with Wednesday, I did successfully participate. 

Can you guess what day it was? Wacky Tacky Wednesday!  (I chose a floral theme, as you can probably tell.)
Kali and Kevin being silly.

Here's a closer look at my hair and lipstick, which caused several people to do a double take.

 Of course, Thursday was Halloween!  I decided (about three days before Halloween) that I wanted to be Marie Antoinette.  I started searching through my wardrobe, and two things quickly became evident: this was going to be a somewhat modernized version, and it was going to be black and white rather than pastel, which would be more accurate.

Here's what I came up with:

Please excuse the messy room and horrible selfie.
Just kidding!  This wasn't my final costume, but it was the basis.  I dug through my scrap box and found an old lace curtain that I decided had a lot of potential.  After a lot of sewing (by hand because my sewing machine decided not to work), especially because I accidentally sewed one of the sleeves on backwards and had to redo it and I sewed lace around the neck before deciding it looked horrible and undoing all the stitches, I came up with this final result:

I think I did a pretty good job.  I had a big lace bow in my hair but you can't see it in this picture.  I also covered my face in baby powder and drew on a beauty mark.  I had a parasol too, but I couldn't use that while inside the school building.  The skirt was huge (thanks to a square dancing crinoline I just happen to have lying around) and made sitting very difficult.  Driving was especially challenging, but somehow I managed it.

Here we have Marie Antoinette, Hannah the Sleepy Senior, Hana as Jess from New Girl, Kali as Minnie Mouse, and Kevin as a nerd.

Today was Phoenix Friday (that's our school mascot), which basically meant wear school colors and school apparel (t-shirts, sweatshirts, pajama pants, etc) and was kind of boring.  I actually forgot to get any pictures of it, too, so just imagine a lot of blue and gray and navy.  (Our colors are, I believe lapis lazuli and gray, technically at least.)

Happy Halloween to everyone! 

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Older, wiser, and apparently more photogenic

A couple weeks ago, I got my senior portraits done!  It was really fun, and I got some great pictures out of it.  I'm not sure which one I'll pick for the yearbook, but I thought I would share a few of my favorites.  All pictures courtesy of Tracey Washburn photography.

This is probably my first pick for my yearbook photo.

I was so itchy after doing these pictures in the grass in my shortest dress.  The color contrast was worth it in the end, but it was rather unpleasant at the time.

This is definitely one of my most favorites.

I also just recently had my birthday, and I am now officially an adult!  (Which is a really frightening concept.)  I spent the entire week at the beach with my family and friends having a fantastic time.

 I got a fun hat.  I also got an awesome Doctor Who mug, the Marauders' Map, a unicorn pillow pet, spectrespecs, loads of Tim Burton movies, an Audrey Hepburn picture book, gift certificates to the Tea Room, and some other cool stuff.

Me, my siblings, and our friends.

Birthday dinner!
 We had fresh seafood for dinner almost every night, which made me very, very happy!

Can you tell I wear this dress a lot?
We had breakfast on my birthday at Yana's, which is one of my all-time favorite restaurants.  It's packed floor to ceiling with 50s memorabilia (mostly focusing on Elvis and Marilyn Monroe), and they have the most amazing fruit fritters and pancakes.

 Sadly, this week has been back to the real world of homework and college applications.  (I got my first application sent in, though, which was very exciting!)

Friday, October 4, 2013

International Delights

Today was the International Festival!  This is the second year I've gone, and I love it so much!  Eleanore and I left for the festival right after school (as it's only a few minutes from our school), and then had over an hour to kill before it opened.  So we wandered around, got slightly lost, and managed to, eventually, find one of my favorite thrift stores!  The clothes are a little pricey, but there are so many treasures to be found.  I found these awesome old comic books and am already planning the different crafts I can use them for.

The festival is in the convention center, and it includes rows of booths selling stuff from different countries and cultures, booths with cultural information, and a long row of booths selling different foods.

Our strategy was to wander around all the booths, then wander back through, then wander through the food section, then wander back through all the booths, then wander back through the food, then back through the shops in no particular order at all.  We looked at everything and bought probably far more than we should.

Eleanore hates it when I take her picture.
We had some awesome food, too.  We both had some pea soup from the Dutch stall, which was delicious.  And then we shared some matcha ice cream from Japan, which is what Eleanore's eating in the previous picture.  And I also had a custard bun from one of the Asian countries, but I forget which.  We had bubble tea, too, but I didn't really care for it.

Proof that I was, in fact, there as well.
Some of my favorite things I got were a beautiful Egyptian glass bottle, an Egyptian necklace I'm fairly certain is Isis, a Chinese purse, and a couple hair clips, one from India and one from Russia.

A great time was had by all, and by all I mean me and Eleanore, because our other friends couldn't make it.  I think several of them will go tomorrow, though, so that's good for them.  It was an especially lovely reprieve from the hectic rush of school and college applications. 

Also, I have recently begun (and finished, so far) listening to Welcome to Night Vale, a highly amusing and wonderfully bizarre podcast that I recommend to everyone.  And I finally watched the 1995 miniseries of Pride and Prejudice, which is one of my favorite books.  I think some parts are better than the recent movie, especially the close following of the book, but other things I like better about the 2005 movie, like much of the acting (though I do love Colin Firth), Longbourn, and some of the costumes.  By the way, the Lizzie Bennet Diaries series on youtube is delightful and everyone should watch that as well.

I hope everyone has had a pleasant week, and if you haven't, you should watch Pride and Prejudice and listen to Welcome to Night Vale.  I believe it would instantly brighten your week!

Saturday, September 28, 2013

Wanderings in the Woods

School has been leaving me pretty burned out, so this weekend, I decided it was time for a change of pace.  And I thought the easiest way to accomplish that would be to have a change of scenery.  Thus, I decided I would go to the park.  I love the park, but I haven't been there in at least a year, probably longer.  I always think I don't have time, but I should really make time for it more often.

It was also a wonderful excuse to break out my awesome hat that I rarely have a chance to wear.

The park has lots of trails, many of which lead down to the lake, which is a nice place, if a bit sunnier than I like.  I prefer finding a bench or a log in the forest to sit and think or write.

I did manage to get some writing done, which was my goal, but not quite as much as I'd wanted.  I did, however, get lots more exercise than I'd planned.  You see, the trails around the park are like a maze: each large path has many different, smaller, sometimes unmarked paths leading off of them.  And my theory when walking is to choose the most interesting looking paths, which generally tend to be those tiny, barely traveled paths.  (Two roads diverged in a yellow wood and all that.)

This usually isn't a problem, because all the small paths eventually lead back to a larger path and all the larger paths eventually lead back to the park.  The only issue is knowing which direction to go.

So eventually I found myself back on a larger path and randomly chose which direction to go.  At some point I realized that the path was taking me around the lake, but I didn't think much of it, because the path twisted and turned and looped back so much that I had no idea where I was.  I did eventually get to the end of it, only to see this:

Yup.  The trail ended, not at the park, but at a road.  And the park was three miles back the way I'd just come.  I was not a particularly happy hiker at that point.  For one thing, I was wearing a long skirt and non-hiking boots, which wasn't the best for lots of hiking.  Also, I hadn't had any water since I'd left my house about three hours earlier, so I was pretty thirsty.  Next time I'm bringing a water bottle.

I did get back to the park eventually, but I was pretty exhausted and my feet were quite sore.  Despite all this, I had a really fun time at the park and did have some time to sit peacefully in the middle of the forest and write.  

Friday, September 13, 2013

My Not-so-Adventurous Month

Today (actually several weeks ago now, because I forgot to post this) was one of the best school days of the year: second Friday!  My school, which is the most awesome high school ever, has this tradition that on the second Friday of the school year, we get out early, everyone floods to the picnic tables outside where pizza is sold for a dollar a slice and there are coolers of free soda.  All the clubs set up booths and people wander around, collecting free candy and sometimes baked goods and signing up for more clubs than you can possibly attend.

I think I signed up for more clubs than last year, and I'm really hoping I'll have time to attend them.  I signed up for French Club, German Club, Japanese Club, Indian Culture Club, Drama Club, Photography Club, Your Name Your Story, Model UN, and Student Legislative Assembly.  Most of the clubs meet at lunch, so it's easy(ish) to be part of lots of them.  I was actually Vice President of French Club last year, but I decided I'd rather not do it again.

In other fun news, I got my new backpack!  It's pretty awesome, and actually fits all my stuff!  This means I can stop using the lime green monstrosity I've had since third grade or something.

It's a little darker in real life, but it has the most adorable red striped lining!
Also worth reporting is the wonderful time I had at my friend's tea party last Sunday.  There was lots of delicious snacks, several types of tea, and, of course, delightful company.  (And a ridiculous amount of mosquitoes as well.)

Credit for this lovely photo goes to my friend's mom, who is wonderfully artistic.

School, despite it only being a month in, is already crazy and hectic.  I'm losing hope of ever getting a full night of sleep this school year.  My classes are really pretty hard and require a ton of homework.  It's stressful, to say the least.  But I'm sure I'll get in the swing of things eventually and it will get easier.  (This is such optimistic thinking I'm having trouble even typing it.)

School has kind of taken over, so I really haven't done anything exciting since mid-August.  The most interesting thing I've done is spontaneously go to Fresh Market with my friend.  We have, however, decided that we should visit the tea room and possibly have picnics dressed up in Victorian clothing, complete with parasols, so maybe I'll have something interesting to report soon.

I did get a fun and artistic picture of the Elderflower Lemonade Eleanore and I found.  It was actually quite good, and the bottle is adorable.

I hope that all of you in school are having a better time of it than I am.  Oh, well.  At least I get to see my friends on a regular basis.  (And, despite my complaints, I really do enjoy most of my classes and find them interesting and fun; they're just a lot of work.)

Also, happy Friday the 13th!  I actually get really excited when we have Friday the 13ths.  I'm convinced the reason we've had so many of them this year is because, for one thing, it's 2013, and also because the world was apparently supposed to end last year, so this year isn't supposed to happen and is therefore unlucky.

Saturday, August 17, 2013

Back to School Blues

Last Thursday was the first day of my senior year!  Wow, that's weird.  I'm really not ready for the summer to be over yet.  It feels like I've only been home for about two weeks.  It's so weird to be back at school, but at the same time, it's frighteningly normal.  After all, I've been in school for the majority of my life at this point.  (Isn't that a depressing thought?)

I love my lunchbox!  You can't see my backpack in this picture, but I swear I have one and it's bursting at the seams.
In the true fashion of my school, I had a ton of homework the very first night.  I also have a ton of school supplies, and have sadly found that my super adorable backpack I got (because I value fashion over practicality) doesn't even come close to fitting everything.  On Friday I had to use one of my huge purses so I could put half my stuff in that.  I've ordered a new backpack that should work better, but I have no idea when I'll get it.

I was excited to see my friends again (we've all been busy this summer and haven't really seen each other), and most of my classes seem like fun.  For the first time, I've really gotten to fill my schedule with classes I'm interested in, except for the obligatory math class.  Two of the classes I'm most excited about are Creative Writing (it has a poetry focus, which I'm a little hesitant about, but I like poetry, too) and European History.  I love writing and history!  I'm also taking psychology, which should be really interesting.  Euro is supposedly one of the most difficult classes my school offers, and I believe it based on the summer homework.  However, I also think it's one of the most interesting classes, so I'm looking forward to it.

My wonderfully cute school supplies.  I generally just use a folder and a notebook for each class, but my English teacher made me get a binder, too.  :(
I suppose I'll get back in the swing of things soon, though this year is going to be my most difficult one yet.  I'm taking 4 AP classes and Creative Writing will be a lot of work as well.  In addition, I have to work on college applications and I want to be involved in the school plays in some way, even if I don't act in them.  (We're doing Alice and Wonderland in the fall and Beauty and the Beast in the spring, which are two of my favorite stories!)

Tomorrow my friend Tallulah is having a tea party, so that should cheer me up.  I love tea parties!  My sister is also moving back into college tomorrow, and I know I'll miss her after having her around all summer.

We had dinner at Nana's house so Sarah could say goodbye to everyone.  After dinner, the four of us were hanging out on the swing and acting silly.  We kept trying to take selfies and were pretty blind from the flash by the time we went back inside.  (Fun story about the porch swing:  At Sarah's graduation party, Tallulah and I were on the porch swing and it broke, sending us tumbling over the side of the porch.  We weren't really hurt, but everyone freaked out when we told them.  We just told them Voldemort attacked us and then went and fixed up our scrapes with princess bandaids.  The swing has been fixed and reinforced since then.)

I hope everyone else has had a lovely summer!

Friday, August 9, 2013


Hello!  I just recently got back from a week visiting my Aunt and Uncle and cousins in California!

I had a lovely time.  We went to San Francisco, Petaluma, Stanford, Berkeley, and all sorts of fun places!  The weather was probably one of my favorite parts.  It was a lovely 70 degrees, 60 or 50 if you were in San Francisco.  Compared to the 90 degrees and humid weather around here, it was simply heavenly.

I took this while we were walking the dog.  The views around there are wonderful.

On Wednesday, we went to Petaluma to go antique shopping, something I adore.  There are a ton of antique stores there.  My favorite was Summer Cottage Antiques, which had a truly delightful selection of items.  I nearly bought the entire store, but I did manage to restrain myself.

 I ended up with several vintage postcards that had been written on and sent. Three of them were postmarked from the 50s, and two were from 1909!  I also got a lovely handkerchief with a beautiful pastel design of French courtiers dancing, and some adorable vintage buttons.

Vintage Bank Antiques was another awesome store that was in a beautiful old bank.  The original architecture was all still there and it was packed floor to ceiling with odds and ends and furniture and what not.

As I'm about to start applying to colleges, we decided to visit a few, starting with Stanford.  It was quite lovely, but very large.  If I did end up going there, I would most definitely need to learn to ride a bike, especially how to ride a bike in poufy skirts!

 It was quite lovely in its own way, but it's not really the type of architecture I prefer.  I like something a bit more castle-esque.

We also visited UC Berkeley.  One of my Uncle's old neighbors currently attends Berkeley, so she came with us and showed us around.  It turns out we're really similar, so her info and insight into the college was very helpful.  I really liked Berkeley.  It's moved up to near the top of my college list.

I also loved the architecture of Berkeley.  This library was one of my favorite buildings.  There's a bust of Athena over the front door.  When you enter, Athena bestows her wisdom on you, but you can't leave through the same door, or she'll take it away.

After we toured Berkeley, we headed to San Francisco to explore and be all tourist-y.  It was completely swamped with tourists, so we didn't get to do some stuff like the cable cars, but it was fun all the same.  We went to Pier 39 and Fisherman's Wharf and looked at the seals and stuff.

Two of my lovely cousins, the twins.


We also went to the Ghirardelli factory, which was pretty cool.  Then we were going to walk the Golden Gate Bridge, but all the parking lots were full, so we went down to a beach where we could get pictures of it. 

We also drove up a mountain to get another view of the bridge.  There was an old, abandoned building that we explored, and we found a path leading away from it.  We had no clue where it led, so of course we followed it.  We had a lovely spontaneous mountain hike along the cliffs and around other abandoned military buildings.

It was actually kind of freezing and windy, but still lots of fun.

We also attended Coast Guard day (My Uncle's in the Coast Guard) which was great fun.  There was rock-climbing, archery, fishing, ice cream, and loads of other interesting stuff.

Unfortunately, now I'm back home and facing the start of a new school year next week.  The problem is finishing all my summer homework before then and all that.  Well, I hope everyone else is having a wonderful summer!