packing for two weeks in Spokane.

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In July, I went packed my things and sat in a car for six hours, arriving in the city of Spokane, WA. I was to spend the next two weeks sleeping in the dorms, going to lectures, and eating college food. That was basically the camp at Gonzaga Debate Institute. Knowing how tiny the dorms were supposed to be, I realized that I had to bring as little clothes as possible. Not only did I have to bring things to wear, I also had to bring sheets, a pillow, a ton of food, and basically everything I needed to survive (comfortably).

So, about three weeks before I really needed to start packing, I planned out what I was going to bring. I don’t have much artistic skill but I ended up drawing the items I wanted to bring on little post-it notes. These were super helpful just to see everything visually.
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There are tons of formulae out there telling exactly how much of what you should bring based on how long your trip is. Six felt good to me, so I brought six tops and six bottoms. For bottoms, I brought four shorts, leggings (which I didn’t really wear), and I replaced that skirt with sweat pants (fantastic idea). For tops, I brought three tank tops, two tees, and a long sleeve that replaced one of those gray shirts. I also brought a light hoodie and a rain jacket.

Spokane in July is pretty hot, though the mornings are comfortable enough for me to wear sweats and a long sleeve. I spent about eight hours of the day in a heavily air-conditioned classroom so everything that I brought was actually too cold. But outdoors, it was perfect.

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If everything coordinated, there would be 36 outfits which is plenty for a two week trip (we has access to a washer and dryer too). But since everything I brought didn’t require much outfit planning, I just grabbed what I wanted.

All of this, plus two pairs of shoes, towels, and toiletries, fit in a duffle bag. Success.

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this week in photos: 8.12.15

A week in the life started this past Monday. While I’ve never been good at capturing the daily moments in a form I liked, I’ve always enjoyed these records of each week. So, every week that I can, I’ll post five photos of my past week. Maybe they’ll be from each day, or all from one. Either way, it’ll show you a bit into what I do (it’s not much 🙂 )

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WED: This past week, the heat meant a trip to Molly Moon’s Ice Cream.

FRI: The sunshine was replaced with thunder and lightning storms for a full day. Unfortunately, that was the day I had to walk through downtown to get home from work. To take a break, I ducked into the Central Library for an hour, browsing through the magazines and taking notes.

SAT/SUN: That weekend, our family friends visited from Portland. They’ve been to Seattle so often that they don’t remember all the tourist attractions, like Pike Place Market. We also took them to the Starbucks Reserve Roastery to try some *intense* black coffee.

TUES: My friend and I delivered balloons to our friend’s house to welcome her back from a full summer of camp. (balloons and wind and public transportation = struggle)

going to the movies (alone)

IMG_20150811_1501114_rewindMy usual volunteering partner was gone for the day, so I got off of my shift a few hours early. About two and a half hours really, a perfect chunk of time for a movie.

I checked my phone every few minutes as the bus turned from street onto bridge, bridge into Chinatown, and finally into the heart of downtown. I raced up to the top floor of a shopping mall and ran up to the tired college student behind the glass. I was late, but like all movie theatres, there were 15 minutes of ads before the actual movie.

What movie was I watching? Paper Towns. I’ve talked about how much I liked the book, but the movie was different. John Green himself has said that the movie and book aren’t meant to be water and ice. The movie was good, kinda cheesy at some moments and lacking in interest at others, but not too shabby. The entire time I was sitting there, in the middle of the theatre with no one to either side of me, I could help being… uncomfortable. There was a family of girls above me and a couple my age (hands intertwined for all 118 minutes of it) below. And, being the weird person that I am, I kept imagining a shooting like the one in the news.

Going to the movies alone was weird. I got distracted a lot. That might have been because of the movie but I had a desire to check my messages, my social media, as if to remind myself that, yeah, I had friends. It happens at parties too, when there’s a moment of not-doing-anything, I grab my phone and check in with the internet. I used to be good with being alone for a while. I had fun hanging by myself all summer. But this past year, I met people I actually wanted to spend time with.

So I guess this desire to not be alone all the time is not a bad thing. It does make movies weird though.

renegade seattle 2015.

bizcardsAs I was scrolling through my Instagram feed late last week, I found that the infamous Renegade Craft Fair was finally coming to Seattle. And, it was located just a few blocks from my house. It was definitely meant to be. IMG_20150802_1050552_rewindInto Hanger 30 I went, with questions and a recording app in hand. It was a great opportunity to get some unique interviews for my project. I was pretty excited for the pretty flowers too.  IMG_20150802_1112227_rewindEvery craft fair I’ve been two (all three of them) has featured creatives from all walks of life.  So talking to the owners and makers was a memorable experience. IMG_20150802_1129012_rewind

One of the people I talked to was Felipe, a man from Columbia who makes the most beautiful wooden watches. Those are real flowers from Columbia in the watch faces. It takes at least eighty hours to make each one. IMG_20150802_1136418_rewind IMG_20150802_1149370_rewindThen I met a woman who used an old camera (tripod required) to take vintage photos. IMG_20150802_1150386_rewind IMG_20150802_1154547_rewind IMG_20150802_1206304_rewind IMG_20150802_1206406_rewindAll around there were pretty shops selling beautifully crafted products. SO MANY BEAUTIFUL THINGS. Unfortunately, there wasn’t enough moolah in my wallet to go around. IMG_20150802_1237514_rewind IMG_20150802_1256148_rewindWhat I had to buy though, was food. I had smoked turkey tacos from one of the food trucks with blackberry lemonade. Was it worth the half an hour wait? Yes. Any longer and it wouldn’t have. The mini donuts however, were to die for. Mango and coconut on one half and curry and caramel on the other. Too bad they weren’t full size.

IMG_20150802_1324139_rewindWhile I has a blast looking at each new booth, I didn’t end up buying many things. The only thing I did buy was a DIY air-plant terrarium featuring Steve the dinosaur. The shop ran out of rope, packaging, and basically everything but the basics, but it all I really needed was the air plant and Steve.

Craft fairs have always been fun. A little anxious sometimes ( creative people doing their dream jobs is hella intimidating) but I love seeing my favorite Instagram accounts come to life.

lately: movies

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Jeez, it is getting really hot in Seattle. Where has our year-round mediocre temps?

The coldest part of the house is downstairs, where the flat screen is. And that means movies! Today, I wanted to share with you the movies I’ve watched recently (and loved!).

NOW YOU SEE ME

A story about how four magicians make it big in Vegas and somehow are pulling big heists during their shows. While, at the same time, an FBI agent (+Interpol) try to crack their secrets. Very entertaining and the ending is a huge twist. Yay for unpredictability! I actually really like this movie, the plot is unique (in my movie experience) and magic tricks are always fun to watch, even if it’s CGI. 🙂

THE GRAND BUDAPEST HOTEL

This is the first Wes Anderson movie that I was aware of watching. I love the colors and the square screen was pretty cool as well. The scenes of the hotels got me wondering if they were paintings or mini scale models. Either way, the imagery is beautiful and the story is pretty fun as well.

THE GIVER

I’ve read the buck a bunch of times, and love the story quite a bit. I wasn’t really sure how they were going to do the movie, since the majority of the story is black and white. But! I think they did a pretty good job, with the set, the memories being transferred, and slow integration of colors.

Movies and summer go together like root bear and vanilla ice cream. Go watch so cinematic masterpieces!

 

 

blog tools: post ideas.

post ideasSo you’ve got pretty pictures. Now the most important part: your content! Coming up with blog posts and ideas is the main part of blogging and is often the reason behind blogger’s block. Here are my tips/resources to come up with blog post ideas.

Don’t wander around the Internet looking for ideas. You’ll be lost there forever, drowning in pins and tweets. While there are tons of great posts out there, the best posts come from a place of interest, something that you really want to talk about. Whether it be an issue you believe in or products/stores that you enjoyed, there should be some passion in it (even if it’s negative) Go outside! Do something!

Answer the questions in Elle & Co’s How to Come Up with 60 Original Blog Post Ideas in 30 Minutes.  (so helpful!)

Create lists. As a list-making fanatic myself, lists are often the easiest way for me to share my ideas and thoughts. And, when you do have blog posts lined up, creating lists of everything can help you stay organized and who know, maybe you’ll find a gem in between those bullet points and strikethroughs.

– Remember, it’s your blog. You can post whatever you want, and posts only have to meet your expectations.

Now go, write some blog posts. The world is already filled so many blogs and bloggers, you are the only thing that makes yours special. Go, go, go!

notebook planner.

DSC_00301I knew that freshman year in high school required actual organization skills. And that means *planner!* I had fun looking around, looking at other people’s planner styles and varieties, and I found one that fits me.

I used a Moleskine lined notebook that I got in a two-pack at Barnes and Noble. LOVE these. They have enough pages that I can fit the whole school year in if I use half a page for every school day. These notebooks are also nice in quality. There are some pens that write like a dream on these pages, let me know if you’d like to see a post on that. 🙂

There are a bunch of planner “techniques” out there. From the chronodex to bullet journaling to project breakdowns like this one. However,  I didn’t need an hour-by-hour breakdown of my day. I just needed a place for deadlines and assignments. That’s why this technique (kind of like the bullet journaling) is the answer.

DSC_00421At the top, I have the date, and the events/deadlines for the day. A few lines down is the start of my task list. Some days it almost filled the column, and others requires some embellishment to fill that empty space. The last two or three lines are where I record my outfits. I started recording them because I wanted to make the most of all the clothes I have. I have a good amount of clothes that I wear all the time and I wanted to remind myself to “not wear that gray tee five times a week.” And, I get to look through and see all the outfits I’ve ever worn and how my style has changed.

This system has worked out for me great this year. It’s not any hassle to write down my tasks, which means I’m more likely to actually write them down!

Tell me in the comments what type of planner and any tips you have as well. 

blogging tools: photos

blogpostphotosPhotos are a huge deal in blog posts. In today’s world, many blogs are excelling beyond magazine-levels of photography and it’s awesome. So, whether you’re just starting out or you need some photos in a pinch, here are my favorite and most used tools for photos.

TAKE THOSE PHOTOS

You hear it a lot in the blog world: shoot in manual. A lot easier said then done, people. A series that I love and have used to figure out photo taking is Photography 101 by Of threes and Hues. Latrina’s blog is one of my favorites and her series is easy to understand and goes into plenty of detail.

BETTER THAN STOCK

Sometimes, other people just do it better. And sometimes, a post just needs a generic backdrop. Unsplash and Death to the Stock Photo share with the world amazing, high quality photos that do the trick. They are stunning, and look hella good. The photo for this post is from Death. My eyes are happy.

ADD SOME WORDS

With Pinterest being a huge influencer on blogs, a good (what I call) title photo is key. That means putting the blog title or topic on the first picture of the post. The easiest way I’ve found to do this is through PicMonkey. Incredibly easy to use and learn. YouTubers use it for their thumbnails, I use it for everything (logo and infographics).

Once you got some nice photos at a title photo, you’re ready to go! Of course, you need to write the blog post too and we’ll cover that next week for part 2 of blogging process/tools/i’ll figure out a name later. 🙂