Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Sandy Hook & Social Media

A school bus in Newtown, Connecticut.

As a human being, I have no words for what happened on friday. Words have proved amazingly inadequate in the past four days.

All I can say is that the shooting in Connecticut left me with a sense of horror and loss I haven't felt since 9/11. I have no answers and I won't try.

What's been unavoidable and intriguing to me is noting the obvious differences in our society between 2001 and now.

I found out about Sandy Hook on facebook. After asking around, I know a number of people who did too. My job has grown to include social media promotion in the past three months and its created in me a deeper awareness of the machine. Even in my personal browsing and sharing I can't help but analyze what gets a reaction, what makes people tick, what "motive" exists behind each photo, comment or link.

For a brief moment on friday morning, there was a raw, poignant pause in which shock and devastation overwhelmed my newsfeed.

There was unity spanning a network of about 600 totally un-related people whose only common denominator is me.

It didn't last long. Not half an hour later, I watched "told-ya-so" gun control comments emerge from my so-termed "left-leaning" friends, and self-righteous abortion comparisons pop up from the right.

My question is this. Are we, in 2012, so de-sensitized to violence, death and tragedy that we can only fully enter into it and experience it for a brief moment before the shock subsides and we reconcile it with what we already know to be true?

Or: Is our focus turned so irrevocably inward that we filter every happening through the lens of ourselves, and how it supports or harms our personal agendas.  Can we truly experience anything for what it is anymore? Or has the need to feed our personal brand overwhelmed authentic reactions like  joy or grief.

Its a question that's been gnawing at me for a while. I made it through the entire bloodbath that was the 2012 election season without uttering so much as a syllable. But I couldn't let this pass without commenting.

And now. Excuse me, while I post this link to facebook....

Sunday, December 16, 2012

Dressember Week 2

I've been so busy! Confession time- No dress on Saturday. I got specific instructions to wear grubby jeans and sweatshirt as a part of Christmas tree chopping and hauling with my friend Katie.  There, blame passed off. 

I'm realizing that my wardrobe is basically the product of a serious thrift store problem combined with latent hoarder tendencies. I get rid of nothing. I have dresses hanging in my closet that I claimed from my freshman year roommate's "giveaway" pile. I may actually wear one of them tomorrow....

I promise there IS a dress under all of these...buried SOMEWHERE among the layers!

Day 11
dress- Target (again!!)  | sweater- Banana Republic via Goodwill | scarf- GAP | mocs- moccasin stand in Arkansas

Day 12- Feast of Our Lady of Guadalupe! I dressed like a Mexican flag to celebrate.
dress- Urban Outfitters via Goodwill  | shirt- Goodwill | boots- some shoe store in Arkansas | earrings- Charlotte Russe

Day 13
dress- Forever 21 | shirt- Fred Meyer | belt- handed down from my freshman roommate Molly!  | scarf- TJ MAXX | tights- Forever 21 shoes- TJ MAXX

Day 14
dress- TJMAXX | shirt- also TJ! | shoes you can't see- probably thrifted. probably. 

Monday, December 10, 2012

Fashion show at LUNCH!

Me at work every single day:

BIG thank you to my coworkers Jen & Karissa for aiding and abetting my dressember hijinks.

Catching up! Ten days, no repeats! BUT trust me, repeats are coming soon. 

If you're curious, here's some of my friends' Dressember adventures:

(Aside #1: Blythe, the founder of Dressember, is taking the same black dress and restyling it every single day for a month. Gulp.)
(Aside #2: I don't know the ins and outs of instagram, so if you can't see those pictures?? Well....sorry.)

It got colder! We seem to be entering the phase I knew we would ultimately reach; the "I-swear-there's a-dress-somewhere-amongst-all-those-layers" phase.
Day 6
dress- Roxy, via TJMaxx | sweater- Target via Goodwill | leggings- Charlotte Russe | keds- Gap

Day 7
dress- Target | shirt- H&M | leggings- Charlotte Russe | boots- Rack Room Shoes | headband- Forever 21

All Target all the time! I have a weakness for clearance rack Target dresses, as evidenced by days 8-10. I selected today's look around a pair of hand-me-off yellow shoes my friend Danielle gave to me yesterday!
Day 8
dress- Target | shirt- Gap | leggings- Charlotte Russe | shoes- Gabes in Steubenville! | headband- handmade by Nate!

Day 9
dress- Target | cardigan- thrifted | shoes- thrifted | necklace- modcloth 

Day 10
dress- Target | peter pan blouse- Charlotte Russe | cardigan- Forever 21 |  leggings- Charlotte Russe | shoes- gifted to me from Danielle!

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Dressember Days 3- 5

Dressember 3rd- 5th!
Thanks everybody for the dressember love so far, I appreciate all the kudos! And the looks of disbelief.  I'm appreciating those too, haha. 

Five days in, and I'm not gonna go so far as to say wearing dresses every day is making me a better person, buuuut...... it IS having a strangely positive affect on my attitude.

Maybe its just the contrast of being so intentional about SOMETHING when I first wake up, rather then rolling out of bed and right into the closest sweatshirt. "Intentionality" is something I've been trying to increase in my life for a couple months now- coming into work with a take-no-prisoners attitude rather than rolling in sloppy and half asleep like its some happy accident I showed up. Enough psychologizing and on to the clothes!

Day 3! sweater dress: BCBG via TJMAXX scarf: Land's End tights: (two pairs!) Forever 21 shoes: thrifted

Day 4! blouse: Details (I think?) dress- Target skirt- H&M nylons- fred meyer shoes- thrifted 
elephant necklace- Forever 21

Day 5! dress- Forever 21 tights- Target shoes- thrifted earrings- Forever 21

I think the REAL psychological issue here is why I refuse to buy shoes that cost more then 7 dollars... Mull THAT one over for me.

Sunday, December 2, 2012

Happy Dressember!

Happy Dressember!

Credit for Dressember goes to supercool Southern California fashion blogger Blythe Hill, who I aspire to someday meet / go shopping with. It's exactly what it sounds like : all dresses, all the time, for the month of December.

I've wanted to do this for a couple years but this year just seemed especially ideal. Reasons being I've always loved a good fashion challenge, I own way too many dresses as it is, and I needed a push to break my workday style rut of jeans and oversized sweaters. Without any further ado, here's Dressember days 1 & 2!

As a rule, all my clothes are insanely old, thrifted or some combination of the two, BUT a breakdown is fun to do anyway, right? 
dress- H&M (but thrifted!) tights- Target  shoes- Minnetonka mocs from Pickles Gap, AR ;) earrings- Forever 21 
bracelet- H&M

dress- Target sweater- TJ Maxx tights- Urban Outfitters shoes- thrifted necklace- Urban Outfitters

Saturday, August 18, 2012

Ten Reasons I Quit Blogging.

Oh, my poor abandoned blog.

Ten Reasons I Quit Blogging:

1) Not posting anything on your blog for eight months makes you feel like you have to come back with a BANG.  As the time increases, so does the pressure to "make it good." I'll think about writing something and go- "Really? THAT'S what you're gonna come back from an eight month hiatus with??"

2) Until this week? I haven't had internet in my house. Side note: no real TV either. The dark ages called, they want their lifestyle back. The Olympics are happening soon, right?

3) My [not-so-new-anymore] job, while phenom, requires my backside to be seated in front of a computer screen for eight-ish hours daily.  Perhaps it should have been evident, but I feel somebody could have taken the time during four years of graphic design classes to explain that this was the lifestyle I'd be embracing.

4) Needless to say, when five o'clock rolls around every day, I exit my office with all the grace and poise of a wild dog. Spending my free time staring at a screen for any reason just doesn't appeal to me.

5) I didn't stop having thoughts all of the sudden. But it was a major goal this year to spend less time on morbid introspection and go make some waves in the world instead. Success, I think.

6) Portland is wild. As in there's been a lot to get out and experience. And no, I don't really live in Portland.  Ergo, it just takes me longer to get to-and-from all my wild experiences.

7) I'm actually out of reasons at six. Ten was ambitious. Everything from this point will just be complaints.

8) Like, when design becomes your job, it no longer counts as a fun side pastime. Everyone told me this would happen.

9) Blogging about things other than design always feels pretentious to me.  Things like my life.  The voyeur in me loves reading blogs that detail the happenings in other people's lives, but blogging about my own always feels mad pretentious.

10) It did actually take me months to feel secure enough in my new job / life / experience in the Pacific northwest to make any firm statements about "what things are like" for me.  During my first six months here, I'd feel genuinely stuck for words whenever anyone asked me how it was going. I didn't really know yet. There was so much NEWNESS going on, I could barely take it all in, much less categorize or label it.

If you're curious? It's going really well.  There's been more health, more growth, more stability, more creativity happening in my world than I know what to do with. And it doesn't always feel GOOD or comfortable, but it feels VERY right.  And I'm so blessed by it. I'll post some of my best pictures soon to show why 2012 has been an (unblogged) adventure.

Saturday, January 14, 2012

Go West.

My mom could have absolutely done the Oregon trail thing. Seriously. She and I packed up my Saturn on January 4th and headed in a general North-Westernly direction with the purpose of dropping me off at my new life in Washington State.

Per the mental rules of my "2012 One picture Per Day" endeavor, I can't post more than...well....one picture per day. But that doesn't mean I can't showcase some of the extras here:
The car top carrier I bought began to fall apart after less than 2 hours on the road. Ergo- ratcheting straps. And lots of them.
Favorite States we crossed- Utah and Wyoming hands down. No offense Idaho, but your landscape along route 80 could do with a little sprucing.
Wyoming had such cheap gas! $2.65 was the lowest we saw.
My mom totally ate a Buffalo Burger here.
We drove through the Columbia Gorge at sunrise on our final stretch through Oregon. It was my turn at the wheel so I begged my mom to at least shoot a couple pictures for me. Merits a trip back for sure.

Thursday, January 5, 2012

2011 in Photos

I could really echo my friend Sarah in attesting that, 2011, you were a mighty disjointed year for me. 2011 was characterized by periods of extreme activity contrasted with extreme boredom. Certain months were totally packed with different happenings, while for others I can't for the life of me recall what I did for 30 days. Some extreme accomplishment, balanced with weeks of helplessly frozen frustration while I searched for the next move. Nevertheless, an important year! Reminisce with me!
March for Life in DC for the first time!
Well known: Christmas is my first favorite holiday. Less well-known: My second favorite holiday is in late January and it celebrates a pair of Canadian lovebirds named Ken and Mary. And Claire was there!

Only too true: February and March are kind of a blur for me. I know I made a movie. While also enrolled in 18 class credits and acting as assistant co-ordinator of my household. My memories have become this one long streak of scribbled notes on the back of scripts and hauling a 30 pound tripod all over campus while filming in every weather condition Eastern Ohio could throw at me. Thank God I have a copy of the DVD and this ONE and only photo of me and Jackie filming under an umbrella taken by a friend with a cellphone. Proves the whole thing actually happened.
Ahem. Filming The Pardoning. He looks how I felt.

My two dear ones turn 21 within a day of each other. Inciting even MORE reasons to drink in my on-campus apartment. Cause we really needed them.
Easter at Franciscan. So Epic. And Claire was there!
Final Household retreat!

My student film ENDS and "premieres" and I mostly hold it together.
BFT officially PAINTS our common room in time for me to say goodbye to household and I mostly hold it together.
Do what I've been attempting to do for FIVE years now and GRADUATE WITH MY BACHELORS. MOSTLY HOLD IT TOGETHER.

Spend my first few weeks as a free, fully educated woman of the world picking berries at a local farm for $5 a bucket with my little brother. Welcome home to Arkansas.

Fave city in the world for the Fourth: the Lou.
I do NOT know why the date reads 2006 on this picture. I really dont.

August was like a year in itself.
VSC Reunion meets Ocean City, Maryland.
Wild times ensue.
Only topped by a ten day trip back to California for my cousin Katie's wedding that still makes my heart expand on mere memory.
Pizza and so much more. With this crowd.

I awkwardly teach, turn 24, and look for serious employment while in Mountain Home, Arkansas. Here illustrated is one of those three things.

One month in Washington does not a Pacific Northwestern-er make. I did get to see some mountains over Thanksgiving though.
More to come. I feel confident in that much.

Home. Christmas. Family. In Arkansas! Despite all evidence pointing against it, we stayed home together for Christmas this year and had a damn good time doing it. Here we are hiking near the Buffalo River a few days before New Years.