Friday, September 19, 2014

Back to School

When you feel like quitting
image source unknown (from Tumblr the bottomless pit of untraceable images)

I've been back in school now for three weeks. "Back" as in I finished college years ago, and have been working in a career up until I decided in April to go back to school to study Web Design and New Media this Fall at the Academy of Art here in SF.

This school thing has been every bit as fun and challenging as I expected. I'm not a fast learner, so I really struggle in class when others just breeze through. It can feel downright defeating to be the one always lagging behind. It just takes me a little extra time to figure things out, but when I finally get something I can run with it like no ones business. So I try to focus not on the struggle, but on those moments when things "click", and that thing that I didn't think I was ever going to be able to do just suddenly becomes second nature. It's such a gratifying experience, and something that one doesn't get to feel often in the working world, at least not in retail.

I also try not to focus on what others are doing around me. Here I am in the lab struggling with how to control the pen tool in Illustrator, and the person at the computer next to me is creating a full blown Pixar-level illustration. It's easy to think you don't belong there. Art school will humble you in a heart beat, and that's not a bad thing because so will the real world. Better to realize that now, and become accustomed to it. Better to realize that you are not always going to be the smartest or most creative person out there. Better to be exposed to people who are way above your skill level.

One of my teachers told us to find the smartest person in each of our classes and sit next to them. Don't sit next to people at your own skill level because you'll just end up commiserating instead of being challenged...and people at your skill level can't necessarily help you improve.

There is always going to be someone better, smarter, or more creative than you (or all three together). Now is the time to learn from them, while at the same time not comparing yourself to them. Now is the time to recognize their skills, and learn how to move on and not use it as a measure your own self worth. Everyone is different and amazing, and brings something different and amazing to the table. You just have to keep working hard at whatever it is you do.

Thursday, June 19, 2014

Hello? Is it me you're looking for?

It's been almost two years since my last post.  Somewhere along the way, I got busy with other things, and lost the drive to post here.  Truth be told, it was longer ago than that.

So here I am, back again, and so much has happened in the last year.  That is usually the case though isn't it?  A year is a long time, and hopefully things have happened and changed in that time.  Anyway, I'd like to tell you all about it, because then you will know who I am today, but then how to I transition from that to "hey! here are some pretty things that you should know about"?  I guess I just do because this is a blog, and that is how it rolls.  You talk about the bad things, and then surround it with nice shiny things, not because we want to downplay the bad things that happen or make them meaningless.  That is just how life works.  That is how (why) we keep going. Otherwise what would be the point? 

Enough avoidance already, right?  As the British would say "Just get on with it already, old chap!" or that's what I imagine they would say based on a lifetime of watching British comedies.

So here goes.  2013 was actually turning out to be a pretty good year.  The job that I was asked to take (that looked like a dead-end) turned out to be a lot of fun, and more importantly showed me that I could take my creative side and really make a living at it. Pete's company that he put all his time and energy, and made so many sacrifices for, was in the process of being bought by Monster.  We were engaged and planning to have our wedding as soon as the Monster deal closed.  Stanford was in the Rose Bowl again, which we were planning to attend on New Year's Day.

Things were looking pretty good right up until our world collapsed on December 26 when Pete's brother Mike died in an avalanche skiing in Jackson Hole.  Just like that, in the space of one breath, instead of a sunny So Cal New Year's, it looked like this: IMG 7486

In the last six months since Mike's death, Pete's deal closed with Monster (February), we held two memorials for Mike (So Cal and Nor Cal) (March), I left the company that I had been at for 13 years to go back to school (more on that later) (May), and Pete and I got married (June 6- two weeks ago!).

And that about brings us up to date for the year to date. 

Saturday, July 21, 2012

Flowers Flowers Everywhere

A little video showing the amazing amount of work it took to create the flower covered walls for Dior’s Haute Couture Autumn/Winter 2012 show.  I can only imagine how wonderful it must have smelled in there!

Monday, July 2, 2012

The Sweetest of Wedding Invites

This is what happens when two very talented designers create their wedding invitation… 
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Sunday, July 1, 2012

A Little Saturday Foodieness

I had a nice foodie day at the Ferry Building Farmer’s Market yesterday.  I treated myself to a basket of blackberries whilst wandering around the stalls, followed by a grilled cheese sandwich of gruyere and caramelized onions at the Cowgirl Creamery’s Sidekick, followed by a Brown sugar pop tart by Black Jet Baking Co. to top it all off. 

Top it off indeed…just look at that buttery flaky goodness.

Tuesday, June 26, 2012

Hello, I’m on Pinterest

As some of you may have noticed, I don’t post as much as I used to (or want to) lately.  Unfortunately my day job has increasingly become over the last few months, my night job, and weekend job as well, leaving little time or energy for anything other than work.  However, I do manage to pin pretty things onto Pinterest fairly regularly as that can be quite the no-brainer* activity… Love! Pin. Love! Pin. and repeat.

If you love what you see on my blog, and want to see more of what I find interesting in the great expanse that is the internet, feel free to follow along with me here at  Here’s just a peek at some of what you’ll find there.   
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*I mean this in the nicest way that Pinterest makes it all so incredibly easy.     

Monday, June 25, 2012

Happy Monday

I had to laugh when I saw this sign by Oh Dier.  It’s a quote that Pete uses on me occasionally, especially when I’m either being indecisive about what to do for dinner or being left/right challenged while giving directions (am I the only one who has difficulty with that?). 
I think I need to get this for our apartment. 

P.S.  The quote is from here.

Saturday, May 5, 2012

A Little Fantasy

Remember when you were little, and built a tent in the living room out of chairs and blankets?  Well Anthropologie has given us adults a whole new way to live out our fantasies with a real tent that is so much better than our childhood fantasies, and it can be all yours for $8998 (plus tax and shipping).
On second thought, maybe I just go build a tent in my living room out of chairs and blankets and just pretend it’s the Anthropologie one instead…
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Friday, May 4, 2012


What’s better than remembering that leftover bit of Brown Sugar Cinnamon ice cream that’s been hiding out in the freezer since last weekend when you up and decided to make it at 9am on a Saturday whilst organizing the spice drawer and marveling at the impressive collection you’ve assembled over the last year or so and coming across the Saigon Cinnamon that you bought on a whim, and is now one of your most favorite possessions because you love few things in the world more than the scent and flavor of cinnamon, and thinking “I should make ice cream with this”, and decide to swap out some of that regular, everyday boring white sugar with some dark muscovado sugar to see if you can’t give Smitten’s brown sugar ice cream a run for its money and see just how good brown sugar ice cream can really taste and boy did you succeed? 

Eating it at 10am when you’ve stayed home sick from work because you’re beyond tired of this hacking cough you acquired at the end of last week and can’t seem to shake and is now keeping you from sleeping.  Oh and don’t forget to add pink sprinkles… just because.  :)
Happy Friday! 

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Society Social

I’ve been a little obsessed with bar carts lately.  Currently, we use an old bookcase, which actually works quite well, but sometimes I see a bar cart like this one from Society Social that makes me stop in my tracks. 
{photo by Jeanne Chan via Shop Sweet Things via Pinterest}

Sunday, April 29, 2012


In desperate need of rest and relaxation after some grueling weeks at work (both mentally and physically) that have landed me with a bad cold, I took advantage of the gorgeous weather we had this weekend and headed to Alamo Square Park, where I planted myself under a big tree, and spent the day sleeping and observing the people around me. 
The view in front.

The view above.

Sometimes you’ve just got to stop or your body will stop you. :)

Monday, April 23, 2012

Modern Home

Gorgeously bright kitchen towels by Avril Loreti
They go perfectly with my new blog header, don’t you think?  I’ve decided to make an effort to play around more in Photoshop, so please bear with me as I muddle my way through. 

Friday, April 6, 2012

Wednesday, April 4, 2012

Optimism & Happiness

These made me smile… who doesn't need a bit of these from time to time. 
image via Eva Juliet Atelier
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