Things I Wish I Could be Thankful for

Happy Thanksgiving for those of you in the US! There is a lot to be thankful for, living in a country like the US. Voting. Internet Access. Free speech. But that said, these past few days have been incredibly disheartening for many of us living in the United States. The goings-on in Ferguson, MO represent a microcosm of violence against people of color, especially black people, across the country. In case you want some good reads on what is going on, I'll give you a few links:

Is it a downer? Absolutely. But it is millions of times worse for the people actually living it, and you make the world better by being aware of what's going on. I'm not going to tuck racism and ignorance into bed for the holiday, and neither should you. 

I hope to someday be thankful for a system that minimizes abuse of authority. I hope to be thankful for an end to systemic racism. I hope to be thankful that corrupt cops can be held accountable and their victims can get justice. I hope to be thankful for an end to the biases that cause people to think black people are more violent or superhumanly/animalistically strong. I hope to be thankful for an end to the murderers of children walking free.

I hope to be thankful for a society that recognizes that order means nothing without justice.

facebook twitter pinterest bloglovin instagram RSS Image Map
Share 0

OOTD: Friendsgiving

Yesterday I shared my cold weather hair care tips, but today I thought I'd fill you in on how I did my outfit that day, which was the last day of my sister's visit and also the FASA Friendsgiving dinner.

white cowl - LOFT
wishbone necklace - Charming Charlie
collared shirt - traded a friend
crewneck sweatshirt - swag from my internship at Canary
feather belt - Francesca's
a-line floral print skirt - Isaac Mizrahi for Target, thrifted
mustard ribbed tights - Target
black flats - Payless 

facebook twitter pinterest bloglovin instagram RSS Image Map
Share 0

Cold Weather Hair Care

I love my hair. I mean, sometimes I get really annoyed with it-- it's super thick and I have a ton of it so I usually can't do anything cute with it-- but for the most part I love how long and shiny it is. I love that I've been able to keep it as healthy as I have for as long as I have, and really, it's a great companion in life. It keeps my ears warm. It balances out my face (which is rather large, to be frank). It makes whooshing noises. When it is windy out, it makes me feel more exhilarated or powerful. It sometimes makes me look really, really cool in photos. It's its own living being in some ways, because it has this natural soft wave to it, and I never really know what it's going to look like in the morning. I like to think of myself as a mythical creature a lot, and I think my hair really contributes to this fantasy :)

Today I thought I'd share my hair routine for cold weather, since the colder air does things to it and can be damaging! The name of the game in hair care is moisture, and this is especially important in the fall when dry air comes rolling in. Dry hair dulls, frizzes or flies away, and breaks. These tips are also really easy to follow, because I am super un-fussy about my hair, so even the laziest of people can follow through!

Use paraben free shampoo and conditioner. Parabens are chemicals that are known to mess with your endocrine system (which deals with hormones) and have been linked to cancers including breast cancer. They are used primarily for killing bacteria, but they harm other cells as well, including those that make up your skin-- unfortunately they're a part of most shampoo formulas and many conditioners. Currently I'm using the Herbal Essences Naked line which has no parabens or dyes.

Water down your shampoo. I do this year-round but it's especially good to do this in the drier months because shampoo dries your hair out by stripping it of its natural oils in the cleaning process. The amount of shampoo you actually need to clean you hair is very little actually, and in fact, many people ditch shampoo altogether and wash only with conditioner (which does have cleaning agents as well!)

Don't dry with heat. Heat can damage your hair, so avoid styling it with heat products. If you can, avoid drying it with heat products as well, and opt for a good towel dry + air dry instead. I like showering at night before bed, so I'll typically towel dry and then write some emails while I wait for my hair to dry enough for a comfortable sleep.

Use a leave in conditioner. In addition to conditioning in the shower, every morning I spritz a leave-in conditioner spray on my hair and brush it through. I prefer a spray version as opposed to a mousse because mousses are much too heavy for my hair, and I typically avoid styling it anyway. I'm currently using Aveeno Nourish + Condition Leave In Treatment. I apply this to the entire length of my hair, then brush it through.

Spritz a little hair oil for added shine and moisture. The wind can be totally brutal, so in the fall and winter it's important to really raise your moisture game. I really loved Carol's Daughter Monoi Oil Sacred Strengthening Serum back with I was using it, but right now that kind of luxury is out of my price range. Now I use Carol's Daughter Black Vanilla Hair Sheen, which is also fantastic, but not as heavy-duty. The Monoi Oil is developed to repair really damaged hair, whereas the Black Vanilla line is more about everyday health. Since the oil is a bit heavier than the leave-in conditioner, I avoid applying this near my roots since my scalp already naturally produces oils to keep my hair healthy. Instead I focus more on the shaft of the hair and the ends which are most susceptible to breaking or splitting.

Use a hair mask once a week to replenish nutrients. Hair masks are like heavy duty conditioners that you let set in over 10+ minutes. I'm currently using Hair Food's Apricot Honey Hair Mask which you can get at Target! Once a week I apply it to my hair towards the root and comb through, then I let it set while I continue my shower. Then I rinse with cool water (for shine). I likely won't be using this as often in the warmer months, but in the cold, dry months, I love it!

Do you have any tricks for keeping your hair healthy and stylish in the cold months?

facebook twitter pinterest bloglovin instagram RSS Image Map
Share 0

Weekend Links 11.22.2014

This week has been super tiring, but I'm surviving. A lot of group projects are coming to a head, so I'm super-stressed and I'm still sick-- not a good combination. I need rest but I can't get much. Unfortunately, whatever is working it's way through my system is not doing so on any kind of timeline coordinating with my academic schedule. I'm really happy Thanksgiving break is coming soon though, and my sister is visiting!

Your Holiday Mom: a site where moms are writing and recording letters of encouragement to those in the LGBTQ+ community who are lacking family support.  Spread it around-- it could warm a heart or even save a life this holiday season as many people in the LGBTQ+ community might be feeling rejected and unloved this holiday season (or any season!)

The best communities for Geek Girls as told by Mia.

Anyone else almost got in a fight over texting confusion? This is a hilarious sketch that is TOO REAL!

#DudesGreetingDudes and why it doesn't actually happen.

My #1 dream guy is going to be on the show that seems most like my life, The Mindy Project.

A poem about a white kid wanting to be a black kid, and actually doing the whitest thing.

Coming to Broadway: Chix 6, a superheroine-filled, comic book lovin', girl power rock musical.

Prank It Forward: a campaign to help out deserving people with a great prank. Today it's Cara Simmons, kind hearted single mother and home cleaner, dedicated to her community but suffering from exhaustion. Watch this amazing video!

A comic about movies like The Lego Movie, Guardians of the Galaxy, and other such blockbusters.

"What if you were beautiful?" he asked.

Time's attempt to ban feminism got a lot of heat, but more importantly, this list of "ban-worthy" words is sexist and racist.

A song for the weekend. 

facebook twitter pinterest bloglovin instagram RSS Image Map
Share 0

Influenster Moda VoxBox Review

I work with a site called Influenster that sends me free stuff to try and review based on whether or not I seem to match a demographic profile that matches the target market for different products. This month I got sent the Moda VoxBox which was full of goodies to keep me bright-eyed and bushy-tailed as they say. (Apologies to those in regions where that phrase sounds like absolute nonsense. It basically means "refreshed and ready for action.") I really enjoy getting to try out new products-- it's a lot of fun!

Top to bottom, left to right: Hair Food Moisture Hair Mask, Jergens Ultra Healing Extra Dry Skin Moisturizer, Rimmel London Moisture Renew Lipstick, Resource Spring Water, Puffs SoftPack, Swiss Miss Simply Cocoa, Rimmel London Moisture Renew Lipliner, Rimmel London Scandaleyes Rockin' Curves Mascara
Hair Food Moisture Hair Mask - I really like this. It smells great and really helps my hair feel healthy, nourished, and moisturized. It's got my favorite thing-- honey-- in it to help protect and nourish hair, adding shine and strength, and apricot oils to moisturize hair making it more tamable and giving it shine and bounce. This is like conditioning times ten. I don't use any styling products or heat on my hair, so I don't worry about protecting it from that stuff, but if you do this product repairs and protects against damage. It's a new product and you can get it at Target!

Jergens Ultra Healing Extra Dry Skin Moisturizer - This moisturizer is really light-- not too greasy or thick. As stated on the bottle it really is ideal for hands. For me, the benefit for hands is that it isn't greasy so I can still do all those grabby-touchy things I use my hands for. It's also a great size for keeping at your desk, in your bag, or in your car.

Rimmel Moisture Renew Lipstick - I got this in 260 Berry Rose. I really like the level of moisture from this-- they weren't messing around when they pursued a moisturizing lip color! It's not thick like most of my matte creme lipsticks are which is a nice feeling because it didn't feel like it'd bunch up as my lips dried out from the elements. The color was a nice color for fall as well. It's not a bold color, and that's partially due to it being a thinly-laid formula, but it does lend itself to enhancing my natural color well.

Resource Water - This water comes from carefully selected spring and contains naturally occurring electrolytes. It tastes nice and fresh, which is good since I've had weird-tasting bottled waters before. As someone who doesn't engage in many electrolyte-depleting activities, I really can't speak to the benefits of that. I do like the packaging though!

Puffs SoftPack - I literally can't believe no one thought of this before. We have full-sized tissue boxes. We have handy-dandy pocket packs of tissues. It was obvious to combine them. It cuts down on waste by using plastic bags instead of a box, and also takes less space. It's easy to stash these in non-flat places. Like between the arm of the couch and a cushion. It's also easier to toss to your friends as they're about to sneeze or during an emotionally damaging movie-- you don't have to worry about a cardboard box corner hitting them in the face.

Swiss Miss Simply Cocoa - Just add hot milk and you've got a delicious cold-weather treat. This is surprisingly rich and one thing I really liked: There are actually only 5 ingredients in it and I could pronounce them all. No artificial flavors, no colors, no preservatives. Pretty rare for snacks that come out of packets. This comes in milk and dark chocolate-- I'm eager to try the dark chocolate one since I was only able to sample the milk chocolate one!

Rimmel London Moisture Renew Lipliner - I was very happy to receive this product because I've been in the market for a lipliner to prevent my lip color from bleeding (we all know I love my lip color) but I couldn't commit to what kind of color liner I wanted to purchase. This took all the guess work out of it, because this lip liner is transparent-- so I didn't have to worry about it clashing with my lip color-- it's clear! It was moisturizing as well so that was a plus.

Rimmel London Scandaleyes Rockin' Curves Mascara - I looked at the packaging, looked at the brush, and I thought it was the stupidest thing I've ever seen. The tube is bright red and covered in a snakeskin pattern, which to me, is a really cheap attempt to look edgy. The brush is shaped like a vertically stretched out "S" which seemed so stupidly unnecessary. Why go through the effort of making such a ridiculously shaped brush? No one's eyes are remotely that shape. Was this a play on the "snakeskin" and "Scandaleyes" theme? Was it a way of playing on the idea that "rockin curves" appeal to women, and that should carry over to eyelash mascara wands as well? I thought to myself "this is marketing gone out of control." Boy, was I wrong! I mean, the packaging still looks really stupid to me, but the brush is surprisingly effective at getting all the eyelashes the way I want to without struggling to manipulate the wand. Maybe this applies more to people with flatter eyelid shapes like me because the different angles of the brush were super helpful. I found myself really liking the shape of this brush! I will say though that I don't like the chunkiness of the mascara's top/the wand handle because it's too chubby for my hands, personally (I have stupid cute little sausage fingers).

All this stuff was provided courtesy of Influenster for free in exchange for a review. All opinions are honest and my own.

facebook twitter pinterest bloglovin instagram RSS Image Map
Share 0

Black Friday Prep Guide Masterpost

It's November, and that means I'm anticipating one of my most favorite times of the year: Black Friday. As ya'll should be well aware of by now, I'm intense about Black Friday. Because I love you, and I don't want you being one of those Black Friday Idiots who gets trampled or otherwise screwed over, nor do I want you guys to look like Black Friday Tourists-- the people who treat Black Friday like it's an amusement park and similarly spend too much money and waste time on dumb or disappointing stuff-- I'm reminding you about these handy dandy how-to guides I've created for totally owning Black Friday.

Happy shopping and happy Thanksgiving! Get out there and stimulate the economy!

facebook twitter pinterest bloglovin instagram RSS Image Map

Share 0

Magical Girl $30 or Less Gift Guide with ModCloth

1 // 2 // 3 // 4 // 5 // 6

With Thanksgiving around the corner, we're all turning our minds to our Holiday gift lists. ModCloth has put together a rad Holiday Gift Guide to make it easier for you to shop for your friends. To make things even easier, I made a little mini guide to shopping for some of the coolest people in your lives-- the magical girls. Whether they are fighting evil by moonlight and winning love by daylight, or fighting a tough semester and winning at Mario Party, these ladies have spirit, badassery, and their own brand of cuteness on their side. Maybe you are one yourself: in which case, treat yo self. After all, everything on this list is under $30!

1 - Pep-Talks and Picker-Uppers - $10 - Every magical girl has got a mission, and sometimes, even the peppiest of us can feel disillusioned and disheartened. In case you are not around to give your friend a pep talk, this book is there for them as an instant boost!

2 - Signed, Sealed, and Quivered Necklace - $14 - Magical girl accessories are hella important. Sometimes they are an important symbol of friendship, other times they serve as amulets or sources of power, and sometimes they're weapons! Given the recent archery craze, your girl might find this bow and arrow necklace to be especially cool.

3 - Come On and Coin The Fun Necklace - $20 - Maybe your gal is more into the kind of mystique that goes along with ancient artifacts. This necklace certainly isn't ancient, but it's certainly got the kind of vibe that says she's got some old-world magic on her side that's been passed down to her by fate.

4 - Zodiac Glitter in Leo - $13 - A magical girl has gotta have her magical look. Gold is a solid color for any magical or mythical being, so this glitter will totally cover your bases whether your friend is a witch, a mermaid, a fairy, or whatever else.

5 - Whimsical Wingspan Necklace - $15 - Back to jewelry, but this time, it's all about the animal motif. Maybe it represents the animal your friend best identifies with like a patronus. Maybe it's symbolic of their talents or achievements. Either way, this necklace makes a gorgeous statement and like I said-- gold goes with everything.

6 - Celestial Chateau Make-Up Bag - $28 - A magical girl knows how to look fly on the fly. She even knows how to get cute while already being cute-- like putting on her makeup from this cute bag. This low-key, cosmic bag is great for also stashing your essentials from your lipstick to your tampons and even your super secret super-heroine transformation wand.

Have you started your Holiday lists yet? Are you excited to shop for the people who make your life more magical?

facebook twitter pinterest bloglovin instagram RSS Image Map
Share 0

Weekend Links 11.16.2014

Sorry for skipping Weekend Links last week and for coming out with this week's late into the weekend! I had my plate full since I was recovering from illness and working with the amazing Yuri Lowenthal and Tara Platt for my Voice Acting class. (That's a thing!) This weekend, I helped out my cousin who broke her foot Friday night. It's pretty fortunate that we both go to the same school for a lot of reasons, but this was a shining example, especially since her roommate was gone all weekend. Here are this Sunday's links!

"The artist is a human being, not a product," Talib Kweli reminds us in his piece defending Lauryn Hill.

Science has finally shown us the precise male movements that make a guy a good dancer. Arms don't matter, so do whatever you want with those hand-ended-noodles.

The Fantasy Bond: When we start losing the "me" to the "we" our relationships fail to be awesome. Science says so.

All the stage musicals getting films: a schedule of the releases of such wonders as The Last 5 Years and Annie, and a list of stuff in production or pre-production like In The Heights (!!!), Wicked, and American Idiot.

Nikola Tesla - the most baddest of bad-ass geeks (PS- Edison is an asshole): a comic.

A really interesting piece on sexuality in evangelical Christian frameworks in America.

A victim of a peeper in her family discusses her complicated relationship of having her sexual abuser in the family. A really well-done piece that covers a lot of different aspects of this experience.

6 tips for hand-lettering. So you can make more awesome stuff.

To-do list fans will like this piece. :)

Amy Poehler's new book and why being "nice" doesn't have to be the same as being a doormat.

How Successful People Handle Toxic People.

A song for the weekend.

facebook twitter pinterest bloglovin instagram RSS Image Map
Share 0

Life Lessons from Yuri Lowenthal and Tara Platt

Totally dorking out after a masterclass with these amazing people.
I had the pleasure of spending much of a weekend with voice-over actors and geeky celebs Yuri Lowenthal and Tara Platt. If the names don't sound familiar, the voices probably do. Yuri and Tara do voice-over work, and while some of it is pretty low-key, like in commercials or internal corporate materials, some of it is pretty darn well-known. Yuri and Tara were both in Naruto's English dub. Yuri voiced Sasuke Uchiha and Tara voiced Temari. They also appear in a lot of video games, cartoons, and anime, from Ben 10: Alien Force, to Young Justice, Sunset Overdrive, Prince of Persia (the videogame that inspired the Jake Gyllenhall flick), Soulcalibur IV and V, and more.

Yuri is actually an alum from my school, The College of William and Mary, so he and Tara, his wife and all-around partner in crime were kind enough to visit Williamsburg, Virginia, teach a couple of Master Classes on Voice Acting (I'm in a Voice for Actors class!) and do a Q&A session.

After a delicious and filling breakfast with our celebrity guests.
Tara and Yuri are fantastic people-- they are incredibly hard-workers and the level of productivity they reach while still making room for fun and being real people is super motivating. They had a lot of great voice-over related pieces of advice to talk about, but they also had some really great general pieces of advice for doing life right that they shared over the weekend. If you want to learn more about voice acting from them, they have a great book out called Voice-Over Voice Acting (which they self-published, because you pretty much can't stop these two from doing anything they care about). Here are some great pieces of advice that I picked up over the weekend.

Be good to work with. The world is very competitive nowadays, with more and more people getting formal education, and the internet lowering the bar to enter most fields. On top of that, some people have got nifty advantages-- maybe it's a connection with a potential employer or client, maybe it's the cash to create a more professional (or at least, "on-brand") wardrobe, maybe it's an advanced degree or a degree from a more renowned school. It's really hard to be the absolute top dog at anything. But, as they say, "You can pay for school, but you can't buy class." When people like working with you, they'll want to work with you more. Even if they don't have a place for you at the moment, they'll think of you for other projects. Be professional and be kind. A superbly qualified asshole is not as appealing to work with as a nice, professional, well-qualified person.

A confused mind says "no." As a marketing and psychology student, this really hit home because it takes a concept we talk about a lot, "analysis paralysis" and just puts it in such a sweet, succinct little package. If you give people too many options, or if you try to tell too many stories at once, it's not going to help persuade someone to hire you. It's going to make it hard for them to know what they want from you, and that makes it more likely that they'll pass you up for a more straightforward option that doesn't require so much decision-making brain power. Know which message you want to present to a person-- which may take some research and planning-- and be the most amazing as you can be.

Don't worry about being the "right" person-- be you. Tara and Yuri talked a lot about how you don't have to be "that guy with the movie trailer voice" in order to succeed. A lot of people just want to hear the voices of normal people. There are so many different needs that need to be filled in voice-over and in many other fields, that outside of being a hard-working professional, you don't have to try to fit into a weird mold to be successful. By the same turn, don't take rejection personally-- there are so many different needs out there and you can't be right for every job. Sometimes, even 50 years of additional training wouldn't get you the job because you're not right for it... so just let it go and move on to finding a better fit.

Being "the ___ guy" is not a bad thing. 
A lot of people worry about being "typecast" or being put in a box. We, as humans, are more than just one thing, so it can be hard to deal with being thought of as just one kind of a person. But being thought of as the go-to guy or gal for a particular thing you're really good at is not actually terrible-- it means you are specialized and you're at the top of people's lists for something. And you can keep working on stuff that's outside of the box-- but sometimes working in that box garners a lot of respect and pays the bills, so you can't knock it! Being typecast can sometimes enable you to have the freedom to pursue other things.

Winners are the ones who stay in the game. There are a lot of tough businesses out there and acting certainly is one of them. But one of the reasons why success seems so elusive is because a lot of people quit. There is a horizon you're running towards, and sometimes it seems impossibly far and we quit before we get there-- but if you're the kind of person who needs to be running in that direction, toward that horizon, to be happy, go for it and know that just because others might quit, that doesn't mean that you're not moving closer to your goals or that they're impossible to reach. Sometimes it's just about being in the game long enough for investments to pay off.

Generate your own work. Keep putting stuff out there. Even if work slows down, keep doing cool stuff in your down time, whether it's working on your novel, producing web-shorts, writing a blog, rocking an etsy business, or any other side-hustle. Build your expertise, reputation, and repertoire, and don't wait around for someone the hand you the opportunity to prove yourself.

Fail often. Try something. Finish it. It might suck. Learn from it. Do it better. This is how you grow. Keeping your ideas in the hypothetical makes it impossible to really see the things that need to improve. Ideas are idealized. Move your ideas into reality, because failures are a springboard for something better. Accept failure. Embrace it as a way to become more awesome.

Whatever you want to do, there's a way to do it. Tara really emphasized the benefits of opening yourself up to learning. There are a lot of thoughts you might have and shut down immediately. Somehow it's extremely easy for us to think up a dream and then kill it by immediately tacking on a "but I can't." If someone else has done it before-- writing a book, learning an instrument, designing an app-- that means not only can it be done, but there might even be ways for you to learn from people who've done it before. And if no one has done it before? That means you can make up your own rules, and there's no wrong way to do it.

If you ever get a chance to meet these two, go for it, because they are absolutely fantastic people. I have so much respect for them and pretty much every person who came to the Q&A stayed after to talk to them and get photos-- they were just too cool for school. Totally down to earth, really funny, and driven. Definitely check out their book on voice acting if it's something you're curious about, whether it's technique or the business.

facebook twitter pinterest bloglovin instagram RSS Image Map
Share 0

Throwback Thursday - Stromae at the 930 Club

So one time I went to a Stromae concert in DC and forgot to tell you guys about it. Sorry! It was back in September and I kept forgetting to blog about it. Long story short, Stromae is my king. He is a brilliant performer and his show was nothing short of art. I don't speak French and I won't pretend to, but nonetheless I thoroughly enjoyed his performances.

Protip: You might be tempted to get as up-close-and-personal with the stage as possible, but Stromae is an artiste, and as such, many of the effects were best viewed from a wider angle, where the effects used on stage could better be viewed as intended. Anyway, here are all the photos and videos I took that night! Not all of them were full performances as there were a number of times when my phone ran out of storage and I furiously deleted old selfies. Prepare for a long and video-filled post.
Share 0

Your body is not a temple.

There is a quote floating around Tumblr recently by Beau Taplin:
"Listen to me, your body is not a temple. Temples can be destroyed and desecrated. Your body is a forest-- thick canopies of maple trees and sweet scented wildflowers sprouting in the underwood. You will grow back, over and over, no matter how badly you are devastated."
I feel this resonating through me. We have grown to worship our bodies, our flesh, when the thing we should work to honor and warm is what inhabits the body: us. As a friend once put it, "You are not a body with a soul, you are a soul with a body." We have all heard someone, maybe on a TV show or in a book or song, refer to our bodies as our own temples, and this well-intentioned metaphor is totally throwing us off. We're forgetting who we are. No matter what we wear, how we adorn or modify our bodies, it should be an expression of ourselves as a person and the lives we build. And sometimes, maybe even often, loving our physical forms is a totally empowering act of loving ourselves, especially when we are rallying against a constant, commercialized barrage of messages telling us we're not good enough, with "yet" tacked on after, with a promise of lovableness/realization of our potential following a purchase of something-or-another.

Your body is not a temple. It is a forest. It is alive. It has endured. It changes. It grows. It heals. Our bodies are important, but they are not the sum of what happens to them, and we are not the sum of what happens to our bodies.

facebook twitter pinterest bloglovin instagram RSS Image Map
Share 0

5FF: Comfort Foods

It's another 5 Fandom Friday hosted by The Nerdy Girlie and Super Space Chick! Today's theme: comfort foods that always make me feel better.

Spicy Fried Chicken from Popeyes
I am a simple girl with simple needs, and one of them is cajun-style fried chicken. Kentucky Fried is nothing. N O T H I N G.

Spicy Fried Chicken from BonChon Chicken
I also like spicy "Korean style" fried chicken. I put it in quotes because while BonChon uses Korean flavors and techniques, I'm not sure fried chicken is really a fixture in Korean cuisine. In fact, to my knowledge it's not really a thing anymore so than potato chips.

Bacon Cheeseburger
I've been trying to cut down on my beef-consumption (I recently learned that those who cut out beef eliminate 90% of the carbon footprint they'd eliminate by going full-vegetarian) but damn, I love me a nice burger. Plus bacon. Plus some slices of avocado. YUM!

Grilled or Baked Salmon
Probably the healthiest thing on this list, I love love love salmon. It's just a delicious and wonderful fish, and it has all the impression of a splurge-y treat with none of the guilt. I usually broil it in the oven with some veggies!

Chicken McNuggets
No matter how many times I see Supersize Me, I will never fully be able to quit Chicken McNuggets. You see, we all have that friend who clearly needs to take a hard look at her life because whenever things get too complicated or difficult, she goes crawling back to some terrible, loser ex for comfort. He's awful, he doesn't have a job, his personal hygiene is sub-par, and he seems to only meet the bare minimum requirements of being a human, and yet she continually, idiotically, returns to this bonehead because he's comfortable, and he doesn't expect anything from her, and he has no authority with which to judge her for her choices, and he reminds her of a time in her life when things were less complicated and the biggest problem in her life was having a sofa of a boyfriend. He's also a reminder that, hey, barring absolute catastrophe, this is where bottom is, and you know what, it's not that bad. I am that friend. McNuggets are my shitty ex. And at least once a year, I reach a point where I engage in a midnight McDonald's foody-call. Yes, that is in fact, booty-call, but with food. At this point I'm basically a caricature of obesity-stricken America. I accept my fate.

Those are my 5 favorite comfort foods. What are yours?

facebook twitter pinterest bloglovin instagram RSS Image Map
Share 0

Harpermade 01 - Digital Doodle

I came to two decisions recently:

  1. Make more stuff.
  2. Show that stuff on this blog.
Making stuff helps me feel happy. Even when everything is terrible, it can give me a sense of control. I like making stuff, even though most of it is silly and I don't think I'm particularly gifted. I like drawing, writing poetry and stories, and playing around with pony beads (tactile activities that remind me of my childhood are extremely soothing).

The above image is a little doodle I drew recently on my tablet in GIMP (which is my go to image editor). I'm still not 100% used to my tablet but I'm getting better I think. Recently I've been a big fan of drawing girls who are pissed off. Maybe it's because I'm pissed off? I think a good base-line of pissed off is healthy. It's a sign of not getting too comfortable with a world that still needs a whole lot of fixing. And that's much better than falling asleep on it all, isn't it? I think I also just generally don't like ALWAYS drawing happy people and smiling cute girls. It's boring and it sets a poor standard.

Would you guys mind if I dumped doodles and other stuff here? Even short stories and what not? Let me know in the comments.

facebook twitter pinterest bloglovin instagram RSS Image Map
Share 0

Our Gravity Falls Group Cosplay

Every year, my main club, The Filipino-American Student Association ends October with Halo-Haloween. We spend October doing our Big/Littles clue month, similar to what sororities do, but we call it Kuya/Ate (Big Brother/Big Sister). After getting matched up with a new member, us bigs (I'm an Ate!) spend the whole month sending our little gifts with clues as to who we are, but if you're me and my (not actual) little brother Julian you also involve ridiculous themes for your clues, involve an epic National Treasure style joint-scavenger hunt/mystery, and are just generally going way harder than anyone needed you to. At the party we had an awesome reveal of who the true bigs and littles were which involved candy, and, at least for my little, a bunch of confetti. It was also a Halloween party, and Julian, Jasmin (my roommate and best friend), Caroline (my cousin) and I took the opportunity to display our undying love for Gravity Falls.

We also dragged Michael, one of Julian's littles, into this too. We made him dress as Waddles the pig! He's wearing a hat my sister got me from a barbecue festival she attended and also my pink shirt (which has a V that's MUCH deeper than I realized once you take boobs out of the equation, ha!).

Julian is being Soos, everyone's favorite handyman. It wasn't a really hard outfit to put together, but he wanted to nail the shirt. He ordered this one online, but the question mark on the front ended up coming out a weird almost-black-but-not-actually grey, and it contrasted really weirdly with the shirt. we spruced it up with some black fabric paint I had lying around from a trip to Mood Designer Fabrics two summers ago. It came out waaay better!

Jasmin nailed the Dipper outfit. She found all the clothing components at the thrift store in one trip! The vest is a child's small, actually, but combine her small torso with a character who never zips his vest, and it ended up being the perfect buy! She borrowed the Dipper hat from Julian (who already had it, of course) and I made her the journal out of a box designed to look like a book we snagged at HomeGoods. I recovered it with paper of varying colors and textures. It was a great addition to the costume because it wasn't as heavy as an actual book that size, plus she was able to use it as a purse, and put her wallet, keys, and phone in there while we were out and about. I'm glad she sprung for actually metallic gold paper, because it really took it to the next level. It was the first fabrication type deal I've done in a looong while!

Caroline is playing Candy (+ a red sweater because it was really cold!) and I think the forks are what sell it. The borrowed the shirt from me because it was the closest we could get on short notice. We'd been bugging her about it for months but she only just recently had the sick-day down time to really sink her teeth into the show. As a result, she realized she wanted to be Candy too late to hunt down a similarly green-striped sweater. She totally looks like Candy on the regular though.

My hair looks weird since I didn't have time to fix it before we began snapping these shots, which is pretty unfortunate. I also wish these photos had been taken from a better, higher angle, but we pulled a random person (Caroline's little) to take these photos instead of asking someone more experienced, so that's my bad (whoops!). I used grosgrain ribbon as a headband since tying ribbon is a lot less time-consuming than covering a headband-- and headbands often don't fit on me anyway because I have a big head and a ton of hair making it even bigger. I snagged this amazing sparkly, collar-having sweater at the thrift store. I used green felt, tacky glue, and sticky adhesive-backed red felt to make the strawberry. It was nice because it was easy and meant I didn't have to make any permanent alterations to the sweater, which would have been tricky to appliqué anything onto because it's knit and super stretchy. I already owned everything else in the outfit.

facebook twitter pinterest bloglovin instagram RSS Image Map
Share 0

October Sponsor Spotlight

It's running a little late, but here is this month's sponsor spotlight! Unfortunately, not all my sponsors were able to get back to me in order to be featured, but nonetheless, show my sidebar pals some love!

by Kelly Michelle

I'm a New Zealander living in England so my blog is my online travel diary on what I get up too. I love travelling (more in style these days), am addicted to afternoon tea, I'm gluten free and totally obsessed with shoes! 
What are you doing (and wearing) this Halloween?
Unfortunately we don't celebrate Halloween however am going to make an effort to get in sweets for the kids in our street when they come knocking! 
What's your favorite fall accessory?
I'm a big lover of hats, so the crazier the hat the better for fall! 
Do you have a favorite ghost story from your home or childhood? 
Growing up in New Zealand, Halloween isn't a big celebration like in North America so we didn't really share ghost stories

facebook twitter pinterest bloglovin instagram RSS Image Map
Share 0

Weekend Links 11.01.2014

I hope you're all having a happy and safe Halloweekend! I've been having tons of fun with costumes-- damn, if I had the money to cosplay more often, I would. But I've got priorities and right now I can't make cosplay one of them-- how sad! Anyway, here are some totally cool links for your weekend.

This collection of gifs of fluffy kittens on piggy pillows will make you squeal.

"Danse Macabre" is the spookiest of spooky songs and it's totally my jam every Halloween.

Or, maybe you prefer an Orchestral arrangement of "This is Halloween" from The Nightmare Before Christmas.

Ask Polly: Should I lose weight to find love? Total must-read for anyone who's been scared of putting themselves out there because of their body.

A comic about seagulls that is really important because it's not just about seagulls.

This piece on loud sex and why you shouldn't apologize for it raises some pretty solid points.

A comic based on Kevin Smith's talk about the importance of encouraging artists.

How was your Halloween?

facebook twitter pinterest bloglovin instagram RSS Image Map
Share 0