June 29, 2012

Summer reading list 2.0

My aunt showed me this website - originally for planning my first bookclub meeting! Themed around The Book Thief (it was sooo good! Sadly I didn't take pictures. After playing around on the website a bit, I stumbled upon their summer reading list! It was lots of fun to look through these books:

This is a new series that I'm particularly excited about. Apparently, a group of authors came together to each write a book about one member of a book club. This one is Olivia, the other books are Paige, Daisy, and Athena. 

This one is more a creepy (perhaps thriller?) type of book. The main character just lost her job, is widowed, and is slowly giving over to dementia. But best of all, her neighboor was just murdered. And she's the prime suspect.
(ooohh suspenseful!)

This is a womans book. All about different type of woman at different stages of their lives - to me it sounds like a parenting book. But for some reason I like those. Don't judge.

You guys. YOU GUYS. I AM SO EXCITED FOR THIS BOOK IT IS RIDICULIOUS. A regency era book, need I say more? Please. For the love of all things holy. Read this book.

This one is another creepy book. I don't know why I read these - my room is in the basement, and it's reaaaally dark down there. These books scare the heebedy jeebies outa me, but I read them anyways. Yeah I know, stupid. I don't really understand what it's about, but I'm tellin you right now, I know there are 39 bodies behind that door. Just you wait. I'm psychic like that.

This is basically a re-telling of the classic Jane Eyre - one of my favorite books of all time (and creepy! It's like a weird form of masochisism. Is it sad that I only know that word from Twilight?)

Another murder mystery, this one placed in the South, a body is found under a peach tree. I'm reading it.
a)It has peaches
b)It's a romance
c)it's a mystery book.
This should be obvious guys.

I love historical fiction - and this book takes many aspects of history and combines them all together in a long love story, from Italy, to America, and back to Europe. 
Pluse it's another love story. And who doesn't love those?

I'm not a photographer

I was driving around the other day waiting for my brother to get out of a meeting - and I happened upon this cute little old blue car sitting at a kind of run down cas station. At that moment I wanted to be a photographer with an amazing idea for this quaint car. But I'm not. 

Despite my awkwardness, I hopped outa the car to snap a few shots with my handy dandy digital camera. I really loved this car guys, if I had the money I would buy this car in a heartbeat - and drive it around. People would stare out their car windows being like, "Hey is that who I think that is? Driving that car?"
I imagine people would think I was this really cool, quirky, vintage girl, with her hair flowing in the wind. Worth getting to know. 
Why can't I just feel like that all the time? #teenagegirlproblems
reality check: No one's hair looks good in a convertable. JUST. NO. It always piles up on top of your head like a huge rats nest.

These are the pictures I liked best - I edited them on picmonkey, experimenting with some of the settings. I was trying to make the photos look old and vintage, without it being obvious that I touched them up. Sorta possible right? Uh no. But that's ok, I'm not a photographer. As previously stated. I think the bottom one is my favorite. 

Dueces xx

June 28, 2012

Summer Barbecue Salad

So there I was, standing on line at the local Walmart - shopping for my mother because she needs things, and I can drive. It's the grey cloud of having a liscence, I get asked to run all the erands.
But anyways, standing at Walmart, I so happened to glance up at the tv screen. And what luck! I learned something new - and here I am to teach it to you (oh that rhymed!)

Balsamic Vinegar

<<The quantities don't reallly matter exactly, just think of the Watermelon chunks as your "lettuce" for this salad>>

I used just about half a watermelon, cutting it into pretty good sized chunks

 Cut the cucumber into fourths (as shown), and "sprinkle" them onto the watermelon - I used a whole cucumber

Fresh cilantro just tastes so much better, but it means you have to cut and chopped the cilantro, into little pieces. Then add it to the salad - I just kept on adding until it looked about right. I prefer to go by gut instinct.

Then add the balsamic vinegar
<<it'll all settle on the bottom, so just keep tossing the salad until you're ready to serve it>>

I added lime juice at the very end, just one lime. It gave it a bit more of a zingy flavor, the balsamic does add some flavor, but the lime takes it to a whole 'nother level!

The whole salad took about 15 minutes or more to make, it just takes some time to cut up the watermelon and cilantro.
It fed about four people, three very hungry mouths and one picky one, with a little left over. It kept well in the fridge over-night, I had the rest for lunch the next day. But I suggest only making enough for how much you'll think you'll eat!

Props to Walmart for a good salad :)

Dueces xx

June 25, 2012

All the Colors of the Rainbow

On a boring summer day, it seemed like a good idea.
How is it possible that everyone looks forward to summer with such excitement, and then ends up doing nothing but sitting on the couch watching reruns of White Collar? 
Probably becaues Niel Cafferey is so freaking hot. But that's another story.

I felt the need to be artsty fartsy, and do something fun with my sister, so here is the how-to on making a summer day more....... colorful.

1. A large canvas board (We used a 20x20)
2. A hair dryer
3. Hot glue gun and glue sticks
4. Crayons (we used 2 boxes)
5. A spray bottle

1. Choose your crayon color/order/theme. I've seen it done to make it look like a garden - I choose just the typical rainbow order because it costs more to buy soo many boxes of crayons to get the kind you want. I'm cheap.
2. Hot glue the crayons to the board, you can take the wrappers off or leave them on, Quincy and I decided to leave them on. It adds character.
3. Spray the crayons liberally with water, and let them sit in the heat for about a minute or two. We were impatient to start, so we didn't let them sit there very long.
4. Blow dry the crayons until you decide you like it the way it is. I was tempted to stop when this picture was taken, I liked the way it looked with the dripping crayings and the thin lines of color running and splashing everywhere. You can stop whenever you want! Creative liscence baby.

>>notice the spacing between the crayons? It started off as an accident, an attempt to get all the crayons on the board then realizing i had enough room. But then I quite liked the effect - the colors that are pushed closer together have more of a layered and rugged texture then the ones spaced apart.

I liked the texture of the falling colors, so I tried to keep it as textured as possible by moving the hair dryer around and waiting for the textured spot to dry and harden a little bit before I melted anymore of that color. It created a cool layering effect that I'm a fan of.

Link below to your artwork! I love looking at creative DIYs!


June 23, 2012

My face is covered in Kiwi

I never take care of my skin.
It's a sad truth of my life, that I'm actually too lazy.
Sometimes I'll go to bed without taking my makeup off thinking, "Well, I'm taking a shower in the morning anyhow. Its not a big deal. I just won't wash my face tonight."
Then pimples start blooming on my face like the evil roses of spring - I grumble a bit and then move on, because I'm too lazy to keep grumbling.
It's a problem.

Skimming on the web, going through some of my favorite blogs and sites, I found this tutorial on a home-made kiwi mask for your skin, and I thought to myself, "Self, this is the time to get active about skin care!" 

Here is what you need:
1. A clean container (I used a mason jar, you may have them around your house, or you can buy a couple at your local Hobby Lobby)
2. A blender
3. Orange juice
4. Kiwi
5. Olive Oil
6. Yogurt

STEP ONE: gather your ingredients
STEP TWO: Peel and puree the kiwi (I used two kiwi's)
STEP THREE: add 3 tbsp of plain yogurt, 1 tbsp of orange juice, and 1 tbsp of olive oil
STEP FOUR: blend it all together

Once it's blended well, pour it into your container. I suppose you could taste it... I didn't, but I am curious now that I think about it. If you taste it tell me what it tastes like!

Apply liberally to your face, avoiding your eyes.
Leave on until the mask dries, then scrub it off well with a washcloth! Personally, I wanted to itch my face the whole time it was on there, I don't know why, but I thought it was super itchy.

**This mask will keep for about a week, as long as it's refrigerated**


June 22, 2012

Strawberries Wild

We made jam. Do I really have anything else to say on the matter? No, not really.

It was really simple actually - we just followed the directions on the sure-jell box. But here is a quicky version for you:

1. rinse strawberries with cold water
2. cut off the stems
3. Lay the strawberries down to dry
4. Put them in a bowl and begin mashing!
5. Add sugar and the sure-jell packet, mix well
6. do the dishes!

We made about 10-12 conatiners of strawberry jam. It took A LOT of dishes and several boxes of sure-jell. All in all, it's probably cheaper to buy jam at the store - but it tastes better if you make it yourself :)

It was a good family night activity, it made us interact and work together. Don't tell my mother, but I really enjoyed the whole thing. 


June 21, 2012

There is no explanation for this post.

So the day begin like this: I woke up, ate breakfast, watched How to Steal a Million on Netflix, ate some more food, then checked up on da blog. Cause I feel the need to check it every day... is that weird? 
So there I was, minding my own business, when suddenly, out of the blue, I hear, "Madison! Come help me with my earwax!"
Uh, I could not have heard that right.
Nope, I heard that right. 
My mom hasn't been hearing well lately, apparently she was talking to a friend about it and said friend mentioned these earwax candles
This is how it works:
Gather together a paper plate, matches, paper towels, a cup of water, a couple pillows, and of course the "candles"
1. Cut a hole through the middle of the plate
2. Stick the candle through the plate, and insert the pointy tip into your ear. Make sure it's in there nice and snug - the point is that once the end of the candle is lit, the fire + air creates a vacuum that sucks out your earwax. Gross, yet cool. (The paper plate is so that you don't get ashes on your face! IMPORTANT!)
3. Light the end of the candle on fire. MAKE SURE NO SMOKE IS COMING OUT OF YOUR EAR - aka you need two people to do this.

Things to remember:
>>> keep the water and paper towels handy. Once the flame has reached about 3 inches above the plate, put it out by dousing the paper towel in water and wrapping it around the flame.
>>> Personally, me and my mom put out the flame every two inches to clean out the candle. The tip gets full of earwax - so use the skewer they provide to clean it out. It's gross, but strangely satisfying.

I didn't do it, but my mother said it was amazing! She can hear me when I whisper, so I think it's worked :)
What a weird day....


Coast to Coast

How many of you blog?
How many of you wish you had blog friends?
How many of you wish you could meet said blog friends?

Well hello there! Miracles DO happen!
A very cool cat blogger, from Whispering Sweet Nothings, is compiling a blog list. Just answer a few simple questions, and you can get your blog put on a map! (literally)
Then bloggers who are near you can visit your blog, make nice, be friends, and then hang out!

Now I know what you're thinking, "that's a little creepy. Not everyone on the internet is who they say they are."
Well a) this is totally optional
b) If you don't feel comfortable meeting someone, DON'T
c) if you're nervous about meeting someone but still want to meet, meet in a VERY public place. So you can scream for help if necessary ;)


I did submit my blog onto the map, so I'm excited to meet new people. Get the word out! Sign up! 


June 20, 2012

Let's have an adventure

Today was an adventure day.
Today Quincy and I went out exploring some of our favorite stores for the necessities of life - thrifting and crafting.
Basically SUMMER.

Hobby Lobby was first - we needed a glue gun to finish up a project we're working on (prepared to be astounded later on...)

Hobby Lobby was close, but no cigar. Our hot glue gun is old, and outdated. So we headed to Michaels to see if we could find the right kind of glue stick. Again, no cigar. But Quincy died and went to heaven while looking through the foods stuffs aisles; everything from cupcake decoraters, to baking travel cases. 
Personally, I roamed through the aisles of paints, and markers, and notebooks. I love the smell of fresh paper - never been used kind of paper. Paper that could hold all of my thoughts and musings. It's a little silly - but I love paper.

Next was Joann's, where we finally ended up buying a new hot glue gun on the cheap, with a pack of 30 glue sticks (total = around $8). 

Of course, we had to hit Goodwill. I've been looking for a thrifted pair of Levi 601's - mom jeans to repurpose for cute fashionable reasons I have concocted in my little head (again, more on that later). I didn't find any good Levi's, but I found some jeans that fit well around my waist so they'll do fine. Plus they both added up to $10
aka it's a great deal.

In the true summer spirit - I braided my hair! my mom braided my hair! 
It's a halo braid, taken from this tutorial
I felt very chic wearing it all day... and I also realized I don't actually own any summer clothes. At all.

But yes, today was an adventure day.


ps - I found my camera cord! But you probably knew that already... so smart!

How can you lose a camera cord? Let me count the ways...

1. Went on a trip, and accidentally left it there.
2. Put it in a different spot saying to yourself, "Ok, remember that I put it here and not the other place that I normally put it. DON'T FORGET." And then you promptly forget.
3. Put it in it's normal place, but some radiation was secretly smuggled into your house and hid in the exact same spot where you normally put the cord - and so it grew legs and walked away without anyone noticing.
4. Your house is haunted by the ghost of a middle aged woman who accidentally electrocuted herself while trying to plug the camera cord into her aging computer.
5. Your other cords played, "Survivor" this week, and your camera cord was voted out of the drawer first.
6. Your mother/best friend/little sister/whatever thought that you were blogging too much - and burned it.
7. There is not explanation. It went into the mysterious abyss of lost things that are never coming back.

Personally, I think it's #3
Weirder things have happened (for proof, see Napoleon Dynamite)


ps - I promise I have some good DIYS and posts coming! However, they need pictures. which needs a camera cord... it's just a vicious cycle.

June 19, 2012

Today is Tuesday. You're Welcome.

I know... I'm a bad blogger. Sigh. It's just, SUMMER! So much to do and so little to do at the same time (how does that happen?)
I've continued my vigorious reading schedule (so excited for book club this month!), my brother is home from rehab (we'll talk about that later), my little sister and I went shopping at Hobby Lobby and Walmart yesterday (and I accidentaley stepped on a piece of glass... awk) - which means I will have DIYs and crafts coming your way any day now! 
Patience is a virtue my friends ;)
(and procrastination is an art form)

But my real purpose in this post is to inform you of some give-a-ways! (I KNOW RIGHT!? BE EXCITED!)
The first of which is hosted by a blog I follow, Vicki Christine 
I really love her blog because she's so witty! And she's pregnant - which is oddly enough a bonus for reading her blog. Because who doesn't love reading about pregnant women?
But this give-a-way is so exciting! It's for a favorite store of mine, Shabby Apple

I really love them because their clothes are modest. The company was created by a Mormon, who saw the gap in fashion - a place for cute modest clothes! So she created this company and it only produces modest clothes! A lot of the clothes are themed too - so it's fun to look through the lookbooks. Here are some of my personal favorites:


To enter:
Simply go to Vicki Christine, and follow the directions!

Easy right?


ps - I'm still looking for someone to give my blog a makeover - anyone have any advice?

pps - do ever get that feeling that a small worm is crawling on the surface of your eye? Maybe I'm the only one....

June 12, 2012

Jewels for Summer Sun

I've been stalking people on facebook lately (another thing my mom and I talked about the other night) - and A LOT of my friends already have their senior photos! Wait what!? Yeah. What.
There are so many places to go to get them taken that I can't make up my mind, but I'll probably ask a woman in my ward to take them for me - and I'll link to her website once I figure out where it is on this huge interweb of ours. 
But besides just getting my pictures taken, the other problem is, WHAT THE HECK AM I GONNA WEAR? So i've decided that this summer I need to be stalking up on clothes and jewelry for my up and coming senior photos. Because I'm vain like that.
Here are the jewelry DIYs I've been looking at....
(clothes post later?)

Those are the ones I like right now... but if you find any, feel free to link them below!


June 11, 2012

We talked the whole night through

Do you ever do that? Talk the whole night through?
It's the kind of thing that can't be forced. It just kind of has to happen. But it's so wonderful when it does! There's something about staying up with someone all night and just, talking.
Me and my mom did that last night;
I had come home a little later than usual on a Sunday night, after we said prayers together as a family and my siblings went off to bed, me and my mom just sat on her bed and talked for about 2 hours straight. At first we talked about my brother, then me, then school, then dad, then my other brother, then my friends, then euphimisms (or maybe not? We couldn't decide if they were euphimisms or not...), then people we'd met that day, then boys, then Pride and Prejudice, then Jane Austen, then college, then something else - until finally my mom almost fell asleep and I had to go to bed before I dropped dead. 
It reminded me of one night last summer where we stayed up together until about 2 in the morning watching Pride and Prejudice. We had watched the good version (with Colin Firth) and then the bad version (with Keira Knightley). And this is what we decided - the Colin Firth version is better because of the historical accuracy, length, how close it is to the book, and acting. The Keira Knightley version is better when it comes to filmogrophy, music, art, etc. But when it came to the historical accuracy and the acting? EEWWW. It was gross. SERIOUSLY.
When we were reading Pride and Prejudice in my English class, we had to give presentations on different topics relating to the Regency era in general. My partner and I talked about food, one group talked about fashion. And the only reason this irked me so much was because I'm a Jane Austen snob (ask my mother, she made fun of me last night for a good 10 minutes), and that I probably knew more than anyone in that room about the Regency period (hence the snob part). But they talked about bustles. BUSTLES. Ok, let me tell you, THERE WERE NO BUSTLES IN THE REGENCY ERA. NONE. ZIPPO. NADA. It made me so mad. sigh.
When we were talking about high school and senior year, my mom told me to just do EVERYTHING. literally everything. Be a part of as many clubs as I can, do as many sports as I can, go to every activity that I can, because it's depressing to look back with regret and say - I wish I had done that. I thought that was good advice, very "mom" advice, but good advice. It's just that I'm scared, you know? As a senior it's hard to try out for a sport, because it's almost garunteed you're not gonna get in. They basically already know who will be in different sports teams next year based on who played the last year. But I think I'll try - maybe I'll e-mail the coaches and just see if I can do anything to be on the team. Because I don't want this year to be sitting around doing nothing. The last 3 years I have hardly done anything, because I always told myself I was too busy with school and theatre. And this year I'll have work as well! But I think I can do it. If it's popsicle it's possible!

Moral of the story: I really love talking with my mom.


June 6, 2012

If you're a crafter and you know it, clap your hands

Any amateur DIYer can tell you, you need mod podge to do just about anything. It's an absolute necessity. Which is why this give-a-way by Stars for Streetlights has got me so hyped up!
I am literally drooling over this book, it's starting to become a problem.

The Give-a-way includes the Mod Podge bible, and what appears to be stickers and wire? I dunno what it is exactly, but I'm not complainin! Free stuff!

The book was written by Amy Anderson, the mod podge guru (or so I hear)

Some of the fun crafts to be attempted with mod podge - Not gonna lie, I look at these and think, "there is no way I can do that"
You get sophisticated and personalized products that you made yourself! So go crazy with it!

oh ps - you're supposed to leave a comment in order to enter... but I literally have no idea how because I can't find the freaking button to leave a comment with! So if you figure it out I'd like to know s'il vous plait.