Charity Shop Challenge: April.

I'm eating a chocolate bunny while typing this. Last night Andrew and I got some delicious Easter goodies on sale. I mean, just because the bunny is a few days late doesn't mean it tastes bad. Right?

Shirt: Free People - Thrifted several years ago, $5 or less
Corduroy Skirt: Vintage from Etsy - Christmas gift
Wooden bead necklace: Made by me


What I love most about the spring.

I've been trying to resist the overwhelming urge to dive into planting this spring. It is one of my most favorite things, but if this potential house works out for us we could be moving in a month or so. One of my least favorite things is moving plants. Last weekend I was on the hunt for geraniums but had no luck. There is something about the smell of geraniums that I think fits the warm weather so well. Today I managed to find some white ones to fill in our long planters that were full of snapdragons last year. I had intended to settle with just those, but then I saw a display of amazing ranunculus and I couldn't resist. Every color available was perfect. Salmon, white, yellow, orange, red. They just looked incredible together. I picked my favorite, yellow, and quickly checked out at that point. One thing I am definitely looking forward to about getting a house is having a yard to fill with flowers. That sort of makes all the stressful parts of house buying more tolerable. 


Thirty Pictures.

My friend Chelsey posted this over on her blog and I thought I'd give it a try. Thirty prompts for thirty pictures.

1. Someone I spend a lot of time with. Andrew. And Bowie. 

2. A picture of myself. Working in my old studio.

3. A picture of someone in my family. My grandpa, the reason I love photography.

4. A picture of something that makes me happy. Jellies.

5. An old picture of myself. Me and "AG Bear". Because that's what was embroidered on his corduroy shirt.  

6. A picture of a sibling. I never had any real siblings, but I was lucky enough to have two really great step-sisters for a number of years. I took this photo of them when we went on a family vacation to Yellowstone. The first time I had to share a backseat on a long trip with one, let alone two sisters. Lots of memories.

7. A photo from high school. Yep. That's me in the plaid.

8. A random photo of me and my significant other.

9. A photo I've never posted before. Butterflies in California.

10. A relative of mine. My grandma on the beach many years ago. 

11. A person I can tell everything to. Andrew. 

12. A picture from everyday life. The cats waiting for me to retrieve their toys from underneath the oven.

13. A picture from a place I love. The redwood forest.

14. A picture that reminds me of old times. My best friends were in a band.  

15. A picture from a great night. Possibly the most memorable night from all of college. Hanging Christmas lights. Tetris box costumes. Garden State + wine on the balcony of the Teal House. Drunk neighbor with a ladder. The truth about art students. Sleeping under the stars.

16. An unusual picture. Cactus face.

17. A picture of my spare time. Granny square quilt, 75% complete.

18. A picture of the person closest to me. Andrew, shark of the month.

19. A picture of a person who is always there. My favorite ladies.

20. A picture of a time in life I miss. The teal house. Good times, great oldies.

21. A picture from last summer. Cicada emerging.

22. A picture that makes me sad. Egon.

23. A picture I always laugh about. One of us had a gift card to the Sears Photo Studio. The rest is history.

24. A crazy picture. Buffalo head in my old Volvo.

25. Latest picture of myself. Five minutes ago.

26. A picture of my parents at my age. I'm not actually sure when this is from, but I liked it.

27. A picture from the best day of my life. The day we got married.

28. A picture from my favorite vacation. Our honeymoon in Carlsbad, California.

29. A picture of an accomplishment. Sitting in my completed BFA thesis space surrounded by my illustrations, book, and giant stuffed whale named Willard.

30. A picture i'm satisfied with. From my first real gallery show. A quilt that I made and paper clouds that one of my best friends and I were constructing.


Currently reading, just read.

I've been making an effort to take a break during my lunch hour and spend some time reading. I had been in the habit of eating quickly and getting back to my work immediately after that. Lately I've found that my little reading break actually seems to make the day go by faster. Or maybe I'm just convincing myself of that. Either way, I'm enjoying it.

I've finished Jonathan Tropper's This is Where I Leave You. I really enjoyed it. It's been a while since a book has made me emotional. This one did. I also laughed, a lot. 

Another good laugh was from A Walk in the Woods by Bill Bryson. This was my first of Bryson's books but I'd heard that a number of his were great, and this one absolutely was. A Walk in the Woods is a non-fiction book about his decision to walk the 2,100 mile long Appalachian Trail accompanied by his out of shape friend whom he hadn't really interacted with in about 25 years. You can imagine. When I first started this book I was certainly entertaining the thought that maybe this hike was something I would do someday. I've been daydreaming about getting away from work and schedules and exploring nature I'd yet to see. But, as soon as Bryson started mentioning the hazards of the trail, like black bears and hypothermia, I quickly abandoned that thought. This book, much like Through Painted Deserts, brings up the point of how awesome the little luxuries in life can be when you're away from them for so long. I've definitely experienced that. My dad, cousin and I spent three days and two nights in the woods of Pennsylvania a couple of summers ago and the first thing we did when we hiked out was eat a cheeseburger, fries, and a coke. It was so delicious.

Just this past weekend I started Blue Like Jazz by Donald Miller. I already have the feeling that this will be one that I read many times over and over. 


Windows open.

Today's weather was perfect. Warm enough to open the windows and wear sandals. Comfortable enough to go with or without a light sweater. And sunny. Finally we see the sun in Cleveland again. I almost didn't mind that I was stuck inside all morning, drawing flowers for a poster, just because it was so nice to sit with the windows open and smell the spring. Last weekend we were finally able to set up a porch swing that we had gotten as a wedding gift. Today was the first day that it was nice enough to sit out on it, I took a new book with me and spent quite a bit of time enjoying it. I love how excited the cats get about open windows. They sat in them all day long. 

I caught Emma meowing out the window and looked across to see one of the neighbor's many cats asleep on their AC unit. I have no idea how it managed to get up there, but it looked pretty comfortable. 


The hunt.

I found this tea set in a local antique store this week. The lovely copper paint and that pattern were just perfect but I had to resist. I took a photo instead.

 Andrew and I have been house hunting. We've been putting all of our extra pennies aside into our savings for a down payment. I've been doing extra work in the evenings to save up a bit more. I'd like to say that I think we've found the one, but it seems like anything could happen between the time we put down those final signatures and now. So who knows. It's exciting, and stressful all at once and it's basically all I've been thinking about for the past two weeks.