Create-A-Day: I Can Admit It…

April 29, 2012 § Leave a comment

Okay, I can admit it. There’s a slight chance that I’m afraid to leave the house now. It’s such a stupid thing to admit, but Alec’s been wanting to go out, see a movie, get food, etc. but I’ve been playing the “I need to study” card instead of admitting that I feel completely ridiculous for being afraid to go to the metro after the robbery yesterday. It’s so INSANE because I know that the statistical likelihood of it happening again is pretty slim, but I just feel really uncomfortable in my neighborhood now, knowing that that guy was scoping us out before we even got on the train.

Anyway, so I’ve been hiding in the apartment, cleaning, drinking a lot of coffee, and watching tv. I made these flip flop hangers to try to get my shoes under control. I think it’s effective, but Alec hasn’t come home to check it out yet, so he might be like “why are there flip flops hanging on a closet door in the living room.”

Here’s a close-up:

I think I’m supposed to hang them in the closet (according to the DIY instructions) but my closets are exploding with clothes (and shoes… in the hall closet with the shoe rack) so I really can’t put more in the closets unless I take some things out. I want to weed out my clothes again, but I would have to leave the house to take the donations and I’m being a huge-wussy-little-white-girl-in-an-all-black-neighborhood-who-is-now-paranoid-after-she-was-robbed-by-a-black-man. I just feel awful and ridiculous and totally retarded. WHATEVER. Move on, girly. You’re going to have to leave the house sometime.

Last week I got some artsy stuff in the mail which made me really happy! I got a handmade embroidery piece from my friend Kate in New York state and an original paint sketch by one of my favorite living artists (whose finished works I won’t be able to afford for another 15 yrs). I framed it in one of two matching frames I pulled out of someone’s trash. Knew they would come in handy! There’s another sketch of his that I would like to get for the other frame, but in my currently unemployed-refusing-to-touch-my-savings state, I need to wait to buy it until I start temping again.

the hand-pulled print in the upper left is titled "Morris" after William Morris (you can catch the reference in the background design). I bought it a year or so ago.

Broader view of the living room art wall.

I’m excited to get into the new place in Alabama so I can try a new arrangement of art. I’d like to switch out some stuff, maybe frame some other stuff to hang, and of course, I’d like to make new stuff for the walls! I need to get a sheet of glass to cover my print of the blue cow in the barnwood frame and I’d like to paint the frame of the large photograph I bought from the gallery a different color, black maybe? Have I posted a picture of that? This picture is horribly awkward because I had to take it from a goofy angle in order to get the least glare. It’s hung across from the double windows in the living room, so it’s all glare all day, but I don’t feel like moving it because I’m moving in two months. It’s pretty big (32×46, maybe?) and it definitely looked smaller in the gallery than in my apartment, but bigger is better, right? I like all the detail that I get to see in it because the print is so large.

When I showed my aunt the photograph, she said the cutest thing: “Can Sepia be a favorite color?” This is actually a bit more yellow than the traditional brown sepia, but it’s still pretty wonderful.

ALSO, since I’m on a domestic theme, I bought an unexpectedly ginormous chair on Craigslist last week for the new place at home. It’s SO comfy and it’s the most wonderful shade of blue, with the slightest touch of gray. The chair is suede and has some pulls from the cat of the lady that owned it, but who cares. My cat loves the chair and she’s been sleeping on it every minute since we brought it home. It’s such a big chair, it blows my mind when I look at it. It’s almost comical. Anyway, we had to fit it among our other furniture in the living room because we couldn’t get it through the other doors in the apartment, so now the living room is a touch crowded, but again, it’s only for two months! So who cares. It’s so comfortable. Ohmygod. Perfect for me because I love curling up with my laptop, a book, or my cat.

Aaaaand I’ve been pretty lazy for the last….. few months because things have just been so crazy. Laundry is the lowest thing on my list so I haven’t done it in a while. Clothes that do get washed rarely make it into my already-exploding closet, so I’ve been just hanging them over the railing of the bed. It’s kind of terrible, I know, but it looks pretty sometimes!

Alright, back to the….. procrastination. Stay safe out there, people.

Apparently I’m a Victim?

April 28, 2012 § 4 Comments

So today I got robbed on the train, some asshole stole my phone and ran off the train, the doors closed, and of course we couldn’t get them open. I saw the guy before we even got on the train, he was acting suspiciously and I didn’t say anything or do anything. I feel absolutely foolish because I didn’t take any of the simple steps to get a finder app or lock my phone in the event that it was stolen. I feel like an idiot and unsurprisingly, I absolutely hate that feeling. I don’t even care about the phone that much, since I can buy another one, I just care about all the phone numbers and pictures that I have on it. I should back it up every day, but I don’t. I shouldn’t sit by the door on the train, but I do. There are a lot of regrets.

We called the cops once we got off at the next stop, they’ve got the description of the young black male wearing black clothes (I was more specific than that of course [dreadlocks, dark grey or black jumpsuit, skull cap, etc.] but I still felt like I was describing every lower-class criminal that’s ever been seen in DC), they’ve got the description of my white iphone with a shattered back and my pink with flowers Cath Kitson case I just bought at the beginning of April. They’ve got my info. I posted two ads on Craigslist listing it as stolen and offering a reward. I texted my phone giving the guy the option to turn the phone in. I discontinued my service, changed my passwords, called my phone company, and I even called local pawn shops to see if they would take iphone at all or a broken iphone in particular.

Did I mention we were going out to celebrate Alec’s birthday today? Yepp.

There’s nothing more I can do to get my phone back. There’s no use in going over what happened in my head and beating myself up for not doing this, that, or the other. THERE’S FUCKING NO USE in being upset over having my iphone stolen when other people are suffering far worse crimes. Jesus, alexa, get the fuck over it. You’re not getting your phone back and assholes get away with crimes all the time. Time to move on.

It also bothers me on a different level. DC has made me racist in a number of ways. Whenever I’ve almost gotten run over by a car — black person driving. Crimes in my neighborhood? Committed by black people. Litter fucking everywhere in our neighborhood? Black kids throwing trash on the ground. The list goes on and I keep trying to excuse it away in my head because I don’t want to feel suspicious or resentful towards black people, but clearly in my neighborhood, I need to be! I hate feeling that this stupid petty crime has made me a worse person because now I’m going to feel increasingly threatened by and suspicious of the black men in my neighborhood and in the broader DC area. I hate that. I hate feeling like a racist. I hate feeling bad about myself because of what other people have done to me. But there it is. That’s what’s happening.

Create-A-Day: Lace

April 26, 2012 § Leave a comment

I bought this fantastic lace shirt for like $8 from Urban when I got the new blue necklace. I also got some super swanky sunglasses, which I might post pics of later.

I also splurged on some new make-up, lip stuff mainly. I got three different colors (light pink, a bronzy color, and a darker plum which I haven’t worn yet) of lipstick and then I got two colors (light pink and the most perfect shade of neutral pink) of lip gloss. So far I’m liking them because I can get away with just mascara and lip color without looking like a total zombie. Eyeliner can be such a hassle. I do get paranoid wearing lipstick though because I’m always worried it’s coming off on cups or is smeared on my face or has dissolved except for the line around my lips or something. Maybe I’ll get used to it. I mostly wear the bronzy lipstick or the neutral pink lipgloss (which I’m wearing in these photos).

I’ll leave you with a funny face!

"bitch, please."

Create-A-Day: Fuck You, I Quit

April 26, 2012 § Leave a comment

Did I mention that I quit my job? Cause I did. And it felt amazing. I can’t believe I stayed as long as I did. I gave them one week’s notice. I don’t think I could have stayed longer, to be honest. It was hard sitting at my desk and not skipping down the hallway. Permanent smile on my face for the first time in a long time! There are just no words to describe how incredibly ridiculous my boss was and I have to say, to anyone out there reading this, please don’t cheat yourself! If you hate something about your life, CHANGE IT. There’s no reason not to.

Also, totally unrelated to anything, that fabulous blue necklace I posted a while ago broke the first time I finally got brave enough to wear it out of the house. I was pretty upset for a little while, as dumb as that sounds to get upset over a necklace breaking, but I really liked it! There weren’t any more in stock, so I got a different, but semi-similar, necklace from Urban. I got *loads* of compliments, so I guess it’s a winner!

Things can only go up from here! One step at a time, I’m weeding out the things in my life that make me unhappy or leave me unsatisfied. It’s not the easiest thing to do, I’ll be honest, but I know I’m doing the best thing for me, so I should stick to my guns and go with my gut! Things will get better.

Create-A-Day: Nesting Already?

April 15, 2012 § Leave a comment

I don’t know where April is going! It’s definitely on the run, that’s for sure. I’ve been an Etsy/Craigslist fiend lately, I think searching for things for the new place is helping me come to terms with moving again. Normally, moving doesn’t scare me, but the more time I spend in DC, the more shit-scared I am of moving back home. I feel petrified, which is really a new feeling for me. I don’t normally feel fear, usually I just feel pissed off, depressed, or determined. I think maybe I’m feeling this way because this is the first time I’m leaving a place I love. In the past, I was always leaving a place I wasn’t too crazy about, so wherever I was going had to be better. I love DC. I love the neighborhoods, I love all the tree-lined streets and parks, I love the markets and shops and of course the MUSEUMS. I love people watching. I love the train system. I love feeling like I’m close to history in the making. I love knowing how many important people have walked the streets that I’m walking on. I know DC much better than I ever knew Atlanta and I’ve been here less time.

The phrase “no use crying over spilled milk” has come to mind a lot lately, starting with my great gran’s death but it’s been applicable to a number of things in my life now as well. I interpret the phrase to mean “don’t get upset over things you can’t change” (I have trouble with “sayings” sometimes, so it helps me to clarify what they mean for me and how I use them). I’m making a number of life-changing choices this year and there’s no use getting upset over them when I know I need to stick to those choices. I know I am doing the right things in all accounts, so being upset about my choices is pretty useless, damn near counterproductive.

On of my coping mechanisms for change is envisioning and preparing for my new life wherever it will be. My current fixation is decorating and furnishing the cottage my parents are building me in Alabama. Thinking about wall colors, linens, and where to hang artwork is helping me create an image of my head of what my daily life will be like. I’ve also, perhaps irresponsibly (but whatever), been buying things for the new place. I fell in love with a large photograph from a show at the gallery a few months ago. Yesterday I finally bought it. The artist will bring it by the gallery for me sometime this week, so I can take it home on Friday. It’s very haunting. And very yellow, which isn’t usually my taste, but when a piece sticks with you for that long, you have to get it, right? I also met the photographer at the opening on Friday, so that was nice. He was very grateful that I bought it, but I was very grateful that he made it, so it balanced out. It will be good to have new work to hang, since I’ve been staring at the work currently on my walls for years.

I need to decide on some major goals for while I’m home, mainly ones that will help me get into a PhD program. Of course, that needs to wait until I get through this semester… Less than a month to go! I’m currently procrastinating from writing a presentation for class tomorrow. My brain is just so full of distractions right now. I was offered the option to renew my current fellowship next year because an incoming student declined admission, but I turned it down because I just can’t get all the numbers to add up. I’ve finally admitted to myself that working as much as I do while being a full-time student is killing me. I can’t keep doing this to myself, unless I’m okay with dying early in life from stress-related problems. It’s not healthy and I need to stop. Plus, I don’t think I could keep on at my current job for multiple reasons, so it’s for the best that I’m sticking to my plan and quitting school.

Let’s look at pictures, shall we? These were taken with an old lens one of my good friends (shout out to Preston!) gave me because the motor in my lens was going out. I’m very very happy with the new/old lens! Taking pictures is so much easier without having to fight with my camera to get it to focus long enough to take a picture.

These are all Etsy purchases. I *love* these mugs. The design is just to die for and the mugs themselves are decent-sized (not too small or dainty) with good, solid handles. I am so happy with this purchase and now I can give the entire dish set I have to Alec when he moves out. I have a few family mugs in our current mis-matched dish set, but the rest I’m giving to him. I have my own, smaller set that I bought last year that I’ll be keeping, along with this new mug set. See below!

I also bought this teapot to replace my old teapot, which is so gross on the inside I’m afraid to drink out of it. I wash it, but it’s stained brown! The teapot is one of my pieces from my pottery studio days, so I think the quality of the glaze just isn’t that great. Both teapots are similar in that they’re blue with a flower motif and they’re a similar size, but the new one is a bit more….. frilly. It’s very unusual to say the least, but I like it. I think it matches my cream and sugar mismatched set well enough, anyway.

The metallic parts are silver and the flowers look handpainted. Very girls, but it’s not like I have any manly men coming over to drink tea with me.

Here’s a terrible picture of the complete set. I just couldn’t get the photo to work, but I wanted you to get an idea of how the set functions visually together. It’s mismatchy for sure, but I love every piece. [please ignore terrible photoshopping in the corner. this picture was just awful. blah.]

I’m considering getting an electric kettle since I won’t have a stove in the new place. Has anyone used one before? Any recommendations?

Oh, and I almost forgot — my favorite part of the teapot! It has this wonderful crackling (I think the technical term is crazing, but I’m not sure) all over it and inside. I’ve been assured this isn’t a structural problem, so no worries about that. I just love how it functions aesthetically!

Anyway, I need to get back to procrastinating–Imean–working on my paper and presentation. Bah. The last month of the semester is the hardest to get through in grad school.

I’m Still Here

April 6, 2012 § Leave a comment

It’s been awhile, but I’m still here. In the world, I mean. I’ve spent the last 7 days in Alabama, trying to support my family while we suffer through the loss of my great grandmother. It’s been weird, to say the least. My great gran was in the hospital for a week leading up to a stomach surgery, then she was in ICU for a month following the surgery, totally reliant on machines to keep her breathing, eating, etc. I don’t want to get too much into details, but let’s just say that everyone in the family was dealing in their own special way and that some people were dealing much much better than others. Anyway, it’s been stressful, confusing, frustrating. My dad’s entire side of the family all lives up on my grandmother’s property, so they were already in an adjustment period when my great gran went into the hospital. It’s just been really hard on everyone, having everyone together and dealing with the new living situation, then having to deal with the increasingly clear fact that Great Gran would not be coming home. Of course, to make things more exciting on my end, my birthday came and went while I was here in Alabama, mostly (and perhaps thankfully) ignored by the rest of the family for the most part. I dropped my iPhone and the back shattered, I ran into a guy I had a crush on ten years ago at the Apple store getting a case to try and hold my phone together until I can afford to buy a replacement, and I had a wonderful evening catching up with another old friend of mine, who I stay in touch with as best I can and who I will be hanging out with a lot once I move home.

It’s just been really hard, being home in general. I wish I could be home to help build the cottage I’ll be living in, but that’s not possible. I’ll just have to get used to eating food I didn’t buy and living under a roof I didn’t pay for. I think for the most part, I might end up hiding in the cottage most of the time I’m home. I don’t have the………… patience for the shit my parents put up with “on the mountain” (what we call the family compound). If people do something wrong or stupid, I tend to point it out, at least if it affects me or other family members. And a lot of people do stupid shit on the mountain, so I imagine I will have a hard time playing nice. It’s not my fault they react so strongly when you say something that could possibly be construed as maybe a little teeny bit negative. It’s absurd. GROW UP. GET A JOB. STOP MAKING BAD DECISIONS. jesus. But I think I’ll feel better when I have my own space where I can have my own stuff, my own animals, my own food. And maybe a bottle of vodka.

Another weird thing… yesterday I went by my old high school. Totally bizarre experience. Not sure if you know, but I went to a very special school: the Alabama School of Fine Arts. I won’t get into it too much right now, but I will say that this school gave me a truly amazing education (it would have been even better had I not been such a lazy student). It was trippy to go back, to see the space again 6 years later. Some things were totally different, but some things, like the art studios, were exactly the same. I talked with my old art teachers and made promises to come back and visit more often once I move back. I left feeling a strange elation.

It’s been a weird week. I’m struggling in a Starbucks to write a 16 page rough draft that’s due today at 3pm Eastern time. All my books and things are at home, of course, because I didn’t pack thinking I would spend a full week in Alabama. Plus it’s just so hard to concentrate, knowing tomorrow is the funeral. It’s definitely refreshing to be off the mountain, alone (with strangers), and with speedy internet at my finger tips. But I still don’t feel like I can concentrate to write this paper. April is such a crazy month at school, lots of presentations and rough drafts due, then we have the first week of May off, then all our final papers are due. But people don’t normally choose when to die, so I just have to try and grind through this all. 2012 has been pretty shite so far. I was home in January to attend the funeral events for Alec’s grandma. Now I’m home again for another funeral. Doesn’t bode too well, does it? The year of change. I hope by the time I officially move home, things will be better, more settled, less tense. I need to take one thing at a time, stop worrying about the move so much since I still have the school semester to finish up, my state taxes to figure out, going back to full-time at work to deal with, and oh yeah, my breakup. I’ve got a full plate and it makes more sense to focus on one thing at a time, instead of trying to prepare for everything at once.

So, to do:

1. Fuck this paper. I need to prepare for the funeral events tomorrow.

2. Fly home on Sunday.

3. File Maryland State taxes.

4. Try to get back into the groove of school.

A. readings for class Monday, Wednesday, Thursday.

B. finish this rough draft that I’ve almost started

C. write the paper for my Asian class that I was supposed to turn in two weeks ago

D. get ready for presentation in two weeks

5. finish up school with the most flying colors I can muster after all this funeral/death/family stuff.

6. go back to full-time at work.

7. save money. save money. save money.

8. say goodbye to the  museums, the Mall, my favorite neighborhoods and restaurants.

9. start packing.

10. move home. buy furniture to fill the cottage *after* I get home. it’s a small space, so it’s too hard to try and plan ahead for what may or may not fit in it.

There. That’s my game plan. One thing at a fucking time. Oh yeah, and I have Classroom 102 stuff in there somewhere as well. FUCK. FUCK. FUCK. I need a clone. That rough draft really needs to be my first priority, but I really need another week or so to get it done, but then my presentation follows closely. Erghs. I don’t know. I just can’t do it while I’m home and I’ll have an adjustment period when I get home after being gone for so long and being so far behind in school. TIme to start picking up the pieces, eh?

Where Am I?

You are currently viewing the archives for April, 2012 at A Wash of Paint.