Friday, March 21, 2014

high school love -- february 2014 #fmsphotoaday

each year, fat mum slim includes a prompt for valentine's day: in 2012 it was "heart", last year it was "love is...", and this year we've returned to "heart". and despite my misgivings about having only one day a year to truly "celebrate" one's love, it's a fun photo prompt. especially since this year i happened to be substitute teaching at a high school on valentine's day. there were more hearts, balloons, flowers, chocolate, candy, and teddy bears than 15 hallmark stores put together. most of the girls were in cute outfits, dominated by red or pink, and many of the boys were dressed up too. couples were exchanging presents, friends were exchanging presents, even teachers were exchanging presents. it was a mad house. but everyone seemed to be really into it.

it made me wonder: was it like this when i was in high school? i don't remember this kind of obsession and extreme commitment to st. valentine, but maybe i'm just remembering it wrong. i have a vague recollection of wearing red and/or pink (despite the fact that i owned very little of each color), and there may have been a flower or two exchanged in my class, but it couldn't possibly have been on the same scale as today's kids, could it? i was never the flashy, show my love publicly sort, so maybe it was as huge a holiday as it is now, and i just missed out or was totally oblivious. but walking the halls this year reminded me of one thing: high school love's all consuming, i love you so much i could die mentality. it's sweet to see two kids so wrapped up in each other that they forget the world exists. (although it's totally gross to actually see them wrapped up on each other.) and i think we can all take some lessons from high school love: love with all of your heart, don't be afraid to show your love how much you love them, and everyone loves to feel special and needed. so let's learn from our youth and let's be bold with our love. it's the only thing that matters.


you... & rcg at the opera // favorite: girl scout cookies! // something orange: the sky was on fire // childhood: tie-dye shirts!


square: doane notebooks are the best! // c is for... the budweiser clydesdales! // utensil... none needed. // water


details... fortuna mezcal knows how to make a good drink // i am... a hot mess. // mistake // out + about


perfect... day for kickball! // heart: valentine's day at high schools are very intense // my drink of choice: chia kombucha // create: new blog content


vegetable(s) // magic: blue steel // feet: playing trivia (3rd place!) // peace: working on #abrightproject


funny: kittens trying to eat collard greens // an act of kindness: community service at the animal shelter // this is where i relax! // half... a decade old. happy birthday mildred!


cut... fresh from our garden! // light // my view today // reflection... in platinum!

how was your february?

Tuesday, March 18, 2014

phoenix international raceway: standing on pit road

personally, i never thought i'd be into nascar, it's just a bunch of left turns after all. but i do like track and field, especially the distance running, and that's just a bunch of left turns too. so when we were offered hot passes to the sprint cup event at the phoenix international raceway, i couldn't pass up the opportunity to experience my first nascar race.

 i think this pretty much sums up the day: sunshine, RVs, crazy fans, loud noises, colorful cars, dangerous crashes, 200 mph driving, and about a million left turns. but then you get onto pit road and everything changes. there's a whole depth to nascar that i never could have imagined. there are thousands of gallons of gas, hundreds of tires, over fifty drivers, their crews, and their 18-wheelers. there is ceremony and strategy, incredibly skilled pit crews, and some of the most skilled drivers in the world. the whole thing is very impressive.


danica patrick is tiny. like tiny tiny. who knew?


i took over 50 pictures just trying to get one with a car in it. luckily they were driving 312 laps, so i had plenty of opportunities to get the perfect shot!


the 2013 sprint cup champion, jimmie johnson, getting his car serviced.

Monday, March 17, 2014

2014 -- week 9 of #projectlife -- planning a wedding.

everyone says planning a wedding is stressful. at first, i didn't believe them. we started off strong: we got engaged at the end of april and by the end of july we'd booked all of our vendors. i breathed a sigh of relief thinking we'd somehow beat the system; we weren't going to be stressed. and for a while we weren't. we sent out the save the dates, we planned the invitations, and we settled in to wait for the wedding to get closer. we still weren't stressed and we still weren't sure what all of the fuss was about. but, as we're now learning, once those invitations go out, it all changes. it becomes real. it's no longer this far away date that you can idly think about and plan for; you have to start doing things. 

as february drew to a close we realized we hadn't talked to any of vendors since we first booked them. and we realized we had a general idea of all that needed to be done, but no idea of the specifics. the wedding magazines and websites are very good at generating general to do lists, but each wedding is different so we had to make our own list. man, that sucker is a long one. because what they never tell you is the beginning is the easy part, it's all sunshine and cake tastings; the almost end, the last couple of months is when the big decisions are going to be made. but the worst part of it isn't the tiny details you would never think about on your own, those decisions are fairly easy, it's the waiting. the "i know exactly what needs to be done, but i can't do anything until 2 weeks before" waiting. and it's driving me crazy! 

side note -- to my mildred: from the very first time i saw you running from corner to corner, chasing nothing, poofy and cute as could be, you stole my heart. happy birthday my little princess. here's to a million more snuggles and death stares. 

Friday, March 14, 2014

#bodanzalezboda: the invitations

i'm so excited to finally share our wedding invitations!! 

we've had them designed and ready to be printed since before the save the dates were finished, but it didn't seem right to reveal them before they'd been sent out and received by our guests. but now that they have, i can tell you all about them!

since our wedding has an old pueblo meets mexico theme and because we love bright, vibrant colors, we thought it only appropriate that our wedding invitations reflect that. we scanned in all of the cards from a loterĂ­a game, a kind of mexican bingo, and picked the ones that seemed most appropriate to our event. (obviously we had to choose "el borracho"!)

the one problem we came across, however, were the many different choices for loterĂ­a cards. at first we had 12 cards pulled out, four cards for each event (ceremony, reception, & welcome dinner), but we decided with that much color, each piece of paper should look a little different. that's why the ceremony invitation has four large vertical cards, the reception has four small cards lined up horizontally, and the welcome dinner just has one large image on the front. they all have one style, but are different enough to be unique.

we wanted the save the dates and the actual invitations themselves to have a similar feel, so we designed the backs of each in a similar way, using our handwriting to speak the words for us. (to find out how we turned our handwriting into a font, read my previous post here.) again, we didn't want the invitations to be too matchy-matchy so we tried to adapt the styles so that they better fit the event. for examples, the ceremony cards are much more formal looking while the welcome dinner's card has a more informal feel to it.

originally, that was it for the invitations. we'd looked into having stamps made to our design, but they turned out to be too expensive, so i went out and bought a bunch of cute stamps to use instead. i was days away from putting them on the invitation's envelopes when we went to the coin show and i discovered that i could buy old, possibly more meaningful stamps instead. i headed down to old pueblo coin and spent an hour pouring over their stamps, picking out the perfect ones for my guests. my goal was to find unique and meaningful stamps for each one of my guests, whether that meant the stamp directly related to them or to us.

here are a few of the completed envelopes i sent out:

for my family from michigan. 

last name: campbell.

the gonzalez clan.
(1972 olympics + dahlia flower; filmmaker)


met them in va, lived with them in ny, now they're my north carolina transplants.

bk meets boston.

to my fellow teachers. 

(maybe he'll send us a congratulations letter!?)

to my peace corp buddies. 

1984 olympics (for vmb) + 1980 olympics (for rcg)

to a veteran.
to my grandmother, lover of the opera.