"...As flashes of their faces go black and white and fade to yellow in a box in an attic..."

My amazing new vision insurance allowed me to get a second pair of glasses this past weekend. I picked them up last night and after a few hours of wearing them I realized they might cause me to resemble Ben Folds a little bit. Which is funny, because 5 minutes after that revelation when Andrew walked in the door and saw me he said the exact same thing. Considering that Ben Folds has been one of my favorite musicians since as long as I can remember, I'm thinking that maybe there were some subliminal factors that made me choose these frames. Andrew told me that I should take a picture to match one of Ben Folds and then put them side by side, which is pretty funny, so I did a little searching and ended up finding some sort of Twitter photo page that he has. I really enjoyed his photography that was in the Songs for Silverman album. It was one of the reasons I purchased the book version of the album. I didn't realize that photography was something that he pursued, but from the photos on this page I can tell that it's a little more than a hobby for him. He even seems to have his own dark room. I think these are really beautiful images. Most of them are very quiet personal moments. Something that I'm often drawn to in photography. The images from Tokyo remind me so much of Lost in Translation.

Seeing these have reminded me that I have a few rolls of film that need to be developed. Maybe this weekend.  Oh, and yes, that's Shatner in the last one. 


Bean-Bag Buccaneers.

Yarrrgh! My dad got us this game from the 60s for Christmas and we played it for the first time last night. The point of it (or at least we think) is to sail to the island, collect your treasure, and sail back before the other opponent does. On top of that, each turn you get chances to hit the other opponent's ship with bean-bags shot out of a spring loaded cannon to keep them from moving in the next round. Due to the fact that the original instructions were missing, and no complete instructions could be found online, my dad made up his own rules for us that worked out pretty well. We had a lot of fun. And did I mention that you have to wear eye patches? 

Oh, and Andrew won. 


Paper sketch.

A recent page from my Moleskine. I've been working on some ideas for a new piece or two. I'd like to have something to submit to the American Greetings Spring Fine Art Show in March. It's nice to have a personal project to focus on when all day I'm swimming in Taylor Swift card designs.

Dear Steve,

I wish that you would have called it the iSlate like the rumors said. iPad just sounds...funny in too many ways. Either way, I still think it's pretty awesome.

Cheryl Andrey (should be Cochran but this whole name change thing is rather difficult.)

(Check it out: www.apple.com/ipad/)

Image via NPR.org


Twenty five degrees and riding the bike.

Andrew and I invested in a bike trainer not too long ago. We'd both been desiring to work out in a way that was a bit more challenging than the yoga dvds we typically follow along with. All summer long we rode our tandem bike but since it's far too cold for leisurely bike riding in Cleveland we decided to bring one of the bikes inside. There's something really rewarding to me about getting warmed up and worn out in a good bike ride. Since we're not actually traveling anywhere though, Andrew and I have found ways to stay entertained while riding. I've started reading Frances Mayes' A Year in the World - Journeys of a Passionate Traveler and Andrew figured out that he can still play Mario.

"...and we lived beneath the waves in our yellow submarine..."


Wedding season.

Andrew and I are planning on attending three weddings this summer. Three! I've had pretty things on my mind today, so I decided to go on an imaginary shopping trip. If money were no object, these are the dresses I'd be wearing to those weddings.


(J Crew)

(Mod Cloth)

And a runner up...


La PhotoCabine

Taking a break from work to de-stress and sketch.


Florida and back.

Some snapshots from our recent trip to Florida. We left the SD card for our camera down there and just got it back today.

Bowie says goodbye.

Snow on the airplane window.

Breakfast by the sea.



An altered deck.

Overheard in the bathroom:

Stall A: "I stopped at McDonald's on the way to work."
Stall B: "Oh really?" (laughs) "I can't believe you would do that!"
Stall A: "Yeah, I didn't get any fries though."
Stall B: "Well that's good." (pauses) "We're all gonna die anyways."

Little Wings.

I keep seeing this necklace on Etsy and in the mornings sometimes I think about it going quite well with the outfit I put on. I may have to make it a birthday present to myself.

Necklace by: Lauren Haupt.


Looking up.

I was glad that when I drove home tonight it wasn't dark already. The shorter days can be depressing.

Holiday Shores.

A friend of ours gave us this album while we were on vacation in Florida and I've become quite fond of it since then. It wasn't surprising to me to find out that this band actually comes from Florida. Their music has a warm, summery vibe and at times reminds me of Fleet Foxes and Animal Collective. I think it will be making it's way to my frequently played list, especially when spring arrives.


Wii love it!

A lot of vacation time was spent playing (and beating) this game with the Tomlinsons. The yellow Toad is my favorite.



- First coat of plane de-icer looks like pink ooze from Ghostbusters 2.
- Second coat of de-icer looks like green slime from the original
- Man across the isle from us orders two beers...at 10 am.
- Kings of Convenience "Mrs. Cold" playing over the airplane radio
while we are settling in.
- Woman next to us is tweezing her nose hairs and wiping them on her
lime green fleece.
- I imagine that this is what the landscape of Antarctica might look like:


Tomorrow morning we board a plane to Florida. I don't particularly like flying, or Florida, but I'm excited to spend time with friends and family for the next week. Plus the warmer temperatures are nice this time of year. A little sunshine is good for everyone.


Thanks IKEA!

I've been making imaginary desk combinations on the IKEA website for quite some time now but have resisted getting a new desk mostly due to the fact that I love my old desk. I've had it for years and it previously belonged to both my dad and aunt. It had several coats of chipped paint on it, nicks and gashes almost everywhere, but it was me. When it really came down to it though, the desk didn't offer me nearly as much space as I really need to work and it ended up looking like a complete mess 99% of the time. My husband, the neat freak, finally convinced me that it was time to get a new desk. So we made our long trip through the snow and ice to the Pittsburgh IKEA this past weekend and this is what I ended up with:

What really excited me about this desk was that it has a built-in light table. It's covered up by my cutting mat in the picture, but it's really nice and something I will definitely use frequently. I also got a new desk chair to replace my previous one that had multiple duct tape repairs to it's vinyl upholstery, and a fancy orange paper organizer (Andrew's idea, but I'm really starting to like it for more reasons than just that it looks nice).

Also, Bowie helped with the assembly.


Finishing Christmas.

This past weekend was the end of Christmas for us. I took down the garland and packed away the ornaments and tree for next year.

I also had the time to finish the quilt I made my dad for Christmas. The type of quilt is called a "rag quilt" because of the frayed edges that are left on one side. Typically the frayed edges are on the side with the patterned fabric, but I thought it would be nice to make the plain side a little more interesting.

I'm really happy with how it turned out. It was my first attempt at a traditional quilt. All of the fabric I used is upcycled, the green is a set of old flannel sheets that I only used once or twice before Andrew and I got our big bed and all the fabrics on the opposite side are pieces of thrifted flannel shirts.

Feeling crummy today.

But this is making my ears happy:


"King sized beds are what people buy before they decide to get divorced. It's because they don't want to sleep together anymore."

-Andrew (in bed last night after telling me I had a lot of empty room on my side of the bed)

A Simple Curve.

I found this movie on Hulu yesterday while looking for something to watch while I crocheted a scarf and was pleasantly surprised. I didn't realize until today that it's a part of the Film Movement collection. I've gotten a few other films from this collection from the library and have really liked them. I'm going to have to pursue more of them in the future.

One of the first scenes in this movie features a float plane soaring over the mountains of Canada with "What the Snowman Learned About Love" by Stars playing in the background. It was really beautiful and want along with the imagery I typically find in my head whenever I listen to that song. It has long been a part of a winter walk soundtrack for me. The movie is about a young man, Caleb, who is attempting to manage the failing woodworking business of his father. While Caleb appreciates, and practices the woodworking skill that he and his father both have, he struggles with the idea of settling into "hippie" lifestyle he has grown up in. The plot develops when an old family friend shows up and changes everything for Caleb.

This isn't your typical blockbuster movie, there are no big stars and I can't say it's for everyone. However, I think this movie is a great portrayal of a complicated parent/child relationship and how they struggle within that. The soundtrack and photography are amazing and I can say that I really enjoyed it.


Top 10 of '09.

According to my LastFM account, these are my top 10 artists of the past year. I'd say it's probably pretty accurate, although I don't remember listening to Kaki King that much. It's also lacking in any Ben Folds which was surprising because he's one of my favorites, but I figured the results were skewed by the fact that his counts were split between Ben Folds and Ben Folds Five. Discovery and Kings of Convenience were both bands that I just started listening to this year. I think they're both pretty fantastic and would recommend them to almost anyone. And, the fact that Mark Mothersbaugh is on the list is pretty clear evidence of how much I love my Wes Anderson soundtracks.

1. Kings of Convenience
2. Phoenix
3. Animal Collective
4. Michael Jackson
5. Andrew Bird
6. Discovery
7. Margot and the Nuclear So & So's
8. Kaki King
9. Jens Lekman
10. Mark Mothersbaugh

(P.S. The photograph is from a table top jukebox at a great little diner that we went to this summer. I loved the times when Weezer was still good.)


Twenty Ten.

We celebrated the beginning of 2010 with family, a little cosmic bowling, tasty food and drinks, Taboo, crazy party hats, glow sticks, a giant fiberglass walleye and too much silly string. Not much more we could ask for. And yes, Andrew is wearing a 1999 hat. You can't go wrong with a classic.

I'm not really one to make resolutions, but I suppose I do have a few personal goals for this next year:
- start and (ideally) finish a quilt for our bed.
- get the piano tuned and remember how to play.
- learn how to play Andrew's violin, at least some scales if nothing else.
- do more yoga.
- continue to learn how to be a good wife.
- get Andrew to go camping.
- finally pursue some publishers for my book.
- read more.