nothing fancy, just love.

♫Kiss a little longer, make it last a little longer….♫  You know that song, right?  It’s almost as memorable as the ♫double your pleasure, double your fun….♫  Jon and I got to remembering gum-jams of the past, and it made me wish current commercials had half the pizzazz of jingle jams from the 80’s.
Why were we thinking about gum from the 80s?  Good question, right?  Well, I spent the day sewing new shorts (see above), and when Jon came home, he said I looked like a pink tiger.  The only pink tiger I know is on the package of Fruit Stripe Gum (circa the 80’s) and so the memories began flooding in.  
Weekend storms kept us curled in the apartment, and so my crafting continued into the afternoon.  This time, however, I put away my sewing machine and decided to make something for the home.  My idea?  Use chalk paint to re-design a Goodwill frame into something that would match my decor.  ImageImage
A bit of sunlight came with the evening, and so we ended the day with a walk around Lake Harriet.  Despite looking like a pink tiger, I wore the new shorts.  
We’ve been searching high-and-low for potential homes, and our first-time-homebuyer excitement has both our IPhones loaded up with realty apps.  Why am I sharing this?  Well, well, well — it makes an evening walk much more exciting when you can see inside of the homes you fancy:
Hope ya’ll had a good weekend 🙂

rock-a-shaying in the bathtub

ImageWhat would it be like to blow bubbles in a bubble bath while chewing bubble gum?  Is that even possible?  Should I try it, dear readers? I mean, come on, I would have a bathing suit on (duh) so it’s not like you would see nudie pics or anything.

You know what, the whole image of me rock-a-shaying in a bathtub filled head-to-toe with bubbles makes me so excited that I am going to actually do this.  Jon is out of town for the weekend, and so there isn’t anyone to tell me that I’m making a mess in the bathroom. Or that bubbles are for kids.  Silly rabbit! Trix are for kids. Or something like that. (That’s a cereal reference if you weren’t born in the 80’s).

To add a rah rah rah factor to the experiment, I’m also going to incorporate some strangers into the fun (no, I am not inviting strangers into the bathtub).  I’m taking some bubbalicious, bumbazooka, and ballpark bubbles to the park for a bubblegum blowing competition.  I might even get that gum with animal tattoos – that would be a fun after project, right?

Anyway, you can tell that I wrote the post before the experiment, but here are the photos that followed:
the sunset on the way home was so gorgeous that i pulled over and watched it from the roof of the jeep:
Be on the lookout for the bubble party in the tub – that is step 2 of this project.  In the meantime, try and tell me that I wouldn’t be best-friends with np in this movie:

Oh, and check out this song—it’s van-task-ick: 

And one last, very important thing – if you’re thinking I’m looking better than normal, it’s all because of Kristine at Apricot Lane in St. Louis Park. She styled me up so I wouldn’t be wearing the same outfit two days in a row (see the last two posts).  Thanks Kristine!!

tisket, tasket, lunch for lovebirds in my basket

I’m the girl walking through town with a book in her arm and a camera around her neck. When I’m reading a book (the hours we spend in bed together is almost akin to dating), I translate the words into pictures, patterns, and designs, and the activity inspires some of my most creative thinking.  I’ll be contemplating the words as the author intended them, but against my own background, experiences, and hyperbolic mind, I often envision a story all my own.

I’ve read a great number of books in which a young person is mentored by an older guide.  These mentors are always filled with wisdom, and just eager to find a student that they can fill with their knowledge of history, people, and ‘the way things were.’  That said, I’ve always thought that it would be great to have one of these encounters on my own – maybe I would help a woman cross the street and then she would tell me all about how she fought for women’s rights.  Or maybe I would sit next to an older man on a bus, and he would tell me stories about Vietnam.  I’ve got a quarter century behind me, 26 good years, but I’m yet to have one of these mysterious encounters that are so prevalent in novels.

And so, I planned a rah rah rah experiment that would make a stranger happy by planning a picnic for them.  And yes, I was secretly thinking that I would end up hearing tales of yonder all night.

To set the scene: I packed a basket with three turkey bacon wraps, a few bags of popcorn, and some pepsi-cola.  I took that basket to the park, and then I proceeded to scan the area for strangers that might want to have lunch with me.  The first woman I approached appeared to be about 70, and she was reading a novel under a shady tree.  Perhaps she was reading a novel about an elderly woman who mentors a young girl, and wishing someone would approach her with a picnic lunch.  Something told me we might be the perfect match for one another.
I approached the woman and told her about my project, and then invited her to have lunch with me.  she smile gracefully, and then explained that her food allergies made eating with a stranger impossible.  Well fine, fair enough.  I had expected that preparing a meal for a stranger would have some trials (Jon is allergic to seafood, peanuts, zucchini, and squash, and he refuses to eat fruit or vegetables.  You could say I know a thing or two about being picky eaters).
But I wouldn’t be defeated.  I approached a young couple holding hands on a bench, and explained my project.  Free food? They asked.  I smiled, showed them the contents of the bag, and then plopped down between them.  Suddenly date crashing seemed much more fun than learning about women’s rights and Vietnam.  And so, I spent the next hour hearing about how they had met at the park 2 months ago, and spent every day together since.  He was at college in Duleuth, and she was a senior in high school two hours south.  They were planning to make it work.

It was incredibly happy to share a meal with them and listen to the story of their summer romance.  And as for them, they seemed pretty amped-up about the free food.  Happiness all around.
The amazing photographer Joy Lengyel made this picnic look like a photoshoot for Martha Stewart, right?  Check out her work, and maybe send her a sweet note (why not?)

Oh, and good news: Jessica Gerke won the scarf give-away from AllThingsAccessories.  Jessica, take a look at the shop, choose a scarf (teal and red retro bird, pink chevron, yellow and grey flower, or blue bird) and send me your address.  Congratulations!

serving goofiness at the picnic

this post was suppose to be about the romantic summer picnic that jon and i had last night, but it’s not, because the only thing on my mind is how strength rises out of vulnerability.  stay with me here, but today i was thinking about my shortcomings —   things i want to do better and  talents i wish i possessed — and i forced myself to stop and think about the positives.

what do i value about myself?  a little reflection, and i know that my greatest strengths are my expressiveness and my goofy personality. while those aren’t exactly traits that would lure dozens of suitors on a profile, that is what i’m working with here, and those are the traits that i need to focus on to really feel me — to feel comfortable in my own skin.

it’s hard work to give up the idea of becoming better, of striving for perfection in certain areas, but it’s critical for enjoying yourself as you are today, and for realizing the value of the gifts you already have.

okay.. and because the expressive side sit still, here are some pictures of that beautiful summer picnic at lake harriet.ImageImage
we snacked on blueberry spinach quinoa salad with poppy seed dressing (make this right now, so good) and chicken bacon sandwiches with cheddar cheese.  we sipped wine from red solo cups.  we made jokes about how the man next to us was *exactly* like tobias from arrested development.  we laid on on our backs and listened to the band play until the sun went down. i was goofy and expressive. i was happy and in love.

accidental adventure

i might be up and walking around, but if i haven’t had my coffee up, i’m as good as asleep.  jon and i both believe that morning begins with the first cup of fresh coffee.  when we woke up today, we were out, and so we hit the streets thinking we’d grab something local and then relax in bed.

unfortunately, we woke up earlier than the rest of the city (6am), and so all the shops were still closed.  we kept walking on, thinking the next shop would surely have something, until we’d traveled nearly 2 miles (on foot).

while the excursion wasn’t planned, it ended up being a lot of fun to learn about the neighborhood.  highlights include this house with a mural garage:



we were close to lake harriet within half an hour, so we decided to sip coffee while we walked the lake:



by the time we finished, we were ready for lunch, and we made a picnic lakeside.  the accidental adventure turned into a somewhat perfect morning: