Sunday, March 30, 2008

Our first House

Since we will be moving in about a month I thought now would be a good time to pay a little tribute to our first home before boxes start taking over. We've lived here for three years and had such good times with good friends during that time! I'm definately used to moving, (our next house will be the 30th place I've lived!!) but this flat has a special place in my heart for sure.
Living Room. Most of the pottery on the shelves is mine. I love learning how to make things! For those of you who have been reading my blog for a little while also recognize that chandelier that I fixed up after getting it from Good Will for $5!
This is the very tiny kitchen that I have loved cooking in! One of our first 'projects' as a married couple, was this floor. We laid all of these tiles ourselves. We got all of the tiles for free from an architecture firm who was throwing them out... and voila! (Please note the 'summer squash' finish of our 40 year old oven)

This room was dark wood paneling (and the whole first floor was covered in matted down, damp, orange shag carpet which we immediately pulled up. To replace that gross flooring, we stained the concrete which you can see here) which we painted. We actually painted almost every room in this house when we first moved in.

These stairs were also covered in disgusting carpet when we moved in. Like I said, we ripped all the carpet out of the entire place and did our own thing! Bryan had this wood left over from an architecture project so we stained each piece and he made a new, beautiful staircase that I have really loved seeing every day.This is our bed. I found those great lamps (which used to be ugly before I painted them and added some awesome square shades which I found at the Memphis Flea Market!) at Salvation Army. Sometime I'd like to make a headboard, but that will have to be after I finish recovering that sofa in the back room!

This is one of my favorite places to sit in our bedroom. That chair is super comfy!

This is 'my' art room! I will really miss not being able to spread everything out on the floor to paint, or turning a spotlight on a blank wall to have a photo shoot. It's been fun having 'my own' area in our house.This is Bryan's 'office.' You can definately tell the difference in our personalities... my room is very artsy and has a hint of organized chaos... in Bryan's room, everything is very ordered (by catagory, might I add), in neatly stacked piles which I love about him. He just can't work in dis-order and it has been fun learning how to live together and work together.

Other than the bathrooms and closets, that is it! I really have enjoyed being able to creatively express myself in our home. Our landlord specifically said we could do anything we basically wanted to this place and we definately took that to heart.

I love the quote from Kelly Wearstler that says, "when every corner speaks of possibility, I know that I am home." I must agree, Kelly.

Senior Exhibit

Our senior exhibit was really great. A sincere thank you to everyone who came!!! I really appreciate all of you taking time to come all the way to the middle of nowhere to see the show. It really means a lot to me and I love you all very much!

This was part of my exhibited works! (Someone requested that I make them a lamp just like mine in a different color-- So I sold a lamp this weekend, not too shabby!)

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Have an Apple.. (or some crackers and gatorade since that apple didnt stave off the dern doctor)

An update a day keeps the doctor away!
(That can't be right, if it was I would not be SICK!)
Boo Sickness!

Globe Treker Update: Bryan and architecture project partner, Aaron, are off to New York to present their project from last semester at a conference of architecture grad students. They may be the only undergraduates at the entire conference.

If anyone has the means, definately watch 'Flight of the Conchords.' It might be on HBO (I don't know for sure because we do not have cable- I borrowed the DVD's from Aaron) It is about two musicians from New Zeland who move to New York. They are in a novelty band and sing songs about the situations they are in. It's really funny and clean.

One of my favorite lines from a song is "I can tell that you are the most beautiful girl in the room (the whole wide room)... you could be a part time model... you probly shouldnt quit your day job"

Tuesday, March 25, 2008

Folk singers sing songs for the workin', Baby.

What a G-lor-ious DAY!! It is windy and sunny and a little chilly outside and I love it! (I love rainy days too, but not on watercolor days! Watercolor doesnt like rain and rain doesnt like watercolor so there.)

I love treats. In all forms. When you picture me, I want you to always see me with a cupcake in my hand. Yesterday was the best!! I went to the market specifically to raid the after-Easter candy sales :) I got snickers eggs, reeses rabbits, and cadberry carmels (how bout that for some alliteration) I didn't eat them all yet, but I did try each one!

Sunday, March 23, 2008

Happy Easter!

I hope you all had a fantastic Easter! It was great to get home and see all of our family. I can't believe that might be the last trip home before I graduate!

I had some fun with my point & shoot Canon today!

Saturday, March 22, 2008

Lexie's 21+1 Birthday Bash

Last year, poor Lexie had the worst 21st birthday ever! So this year Parker and I wanted to throw her a big surprise party! It was a huge success!

Crawfish, Rock Band, Cake, and Friends

Monday, March 17, 2008

Food Snob

I'm kind of a food snob... I'm ok with it, though.

Before I left Jackson yesterday, I ran by Beagle Bagel for some chicken salad. I've never really been a chicken salad eater, but this chicken salad is DELICIOUS (and I would probably eat it every day if I lived closer!)

I really wish I knew their recipe! It has red grapes, almonds and chicken from what I can tell... Who has a good chicken salad recipe? Last time I tried to make this, I failed miserably, but it's been long enough since that failure for me to want to try again!

Globe Treker Update!
Bryan is back! (in the U.S. that is) he'll be in Memphis in about half an hour and then will drive home after that! I can't wait to see him! He said his presentation went really well and he said he made some really fantastic contacts at the conference from all over the world!

Saturday, March 15, 2008

Spring Break- New Orleans Edition

Lexie, Parker and I just got back from New Orleans, where we spent the second half of our spring break. I had to go because our ASID chapter was hosting the national event this year. I expected to be doing way more than I ended up doing by far! (Which left a little time to play!)

Since Bryan is still in Bulgaria (he's doing really well, by the way!- check out his blog and his flicker for updates and pics!), I was totally stoked that they both decided to go down with me! We really had a lot of fun!

We absolutely lived the good life while we were there. Beignets (they went 3 times, I went twice) (in 3 days), boiled crawfish, seafood pasta, chickory coffee, mmm mmm mmm.
We also visited the Aquarium!!!
Lexie, Catty, and ParkerThis is the correct way to pet the sharks:This is INCORRECT:

Don't be too worred, we brought ole P-ark back in one piece.

Spring Break-Chicago Edition

For the first half of the week, Lexie, Liz and I went to Chicago to look for apartments and go on/get interviews. Because it was solely a business trip (not to mention WAY TOO COLD to stop and pose for fun) we only got one picture that wasn't of an apartment.
Although, Lexie loved the city she did decide to go with an offer from Atlantic Records in New York. I would love to go with her, I just have to see what kind of offers I end up with there. I now have an offer from Jackson and New York (this one's in the works right now, really, but a verbal offer). I am really anxious to see what comes from Gensler in Chicago, though.

So that's that... I'm sorry I left you all for a week, I promise it won't happen again!

Saturday, March 8, 2008

House Guests and Smooth Feet- Holla!

We have had some pretty incredible people staying with us the past few days!
We had this guy:
And these guys:
We had tons of fun with you all and are so priveliged to have you choose our home when you come to visit! You are all always welcome!

I went shopping with my mom and sister in Jackson today for awhile. When she asked me if there was anything in particular I wanted I could hardly contain myself from sounding a little too excited about the PedEgg. I don't know if you have all heard of these things. I saw them actually on someone else's blog recently and felt like $10 might be a good investment into fierce summer-time feet. Man-oh-man... My cute toes haven't seen 'smooth' like this in a good 20 years! They are available at Bed Bath & Beyond and are amazing! It's as good or better than a pedicure, is totally reusable and did I mention only $10? GET ONE! My mom and I both got one and we are true believers!!

Now for a GLOBE TREKER update:

I'm off tomorrow with my two good friends to CHICAGO to interview for internships and to look for a place to live for the summer! Wish me luck! I'm stoked! I LOVE the Windy City! Be back Wednesday!

My dearest husband, Bryan, is off to BULGARIA (crazy!!!) to present a paper at an international philosophy conference! He's amazingly brilliant and more tallented than anyone I've ever met! I'm absolutely in awe of him and am so proud of his accomplishments! Good luck, Babe, bring me back something I can eat! (or wear!) He won't be back for over a week, but I'll try to keep you updated!

Tuesday, March 4, 2008

Self Portrait

"My humor is predicated on annoying, repetitive things... And you (Ashley) are lucky to be married to someone as funny as me." This comment came after at least fifteen minutes of a raspy old man voice. I usually laugh. What else is there to say really?

I finished my watercolor painting! Don't judge my krazee-eye (I think my left eye needs a little more work) But for a first attempt at a realistic looking self portrait, I think it's pretty good. I think now that I know how to do this type of painting, it would be fun to do it again for other people. I think this would make a really good christmas gift. I could definately see painting children, I think that would be fun!

This is the original photograph.

I like this crop much better than the whole. I think I'll get some input from my teacher tomorrow so maybe I can fix a couple of the problems I think I'm having!

we were supposed to get really bad weather tonight, but we never saw anything but rain!

Sunday, March 2, 2008

I finished my packets that include my resume, cover letter and portfolio for both Gensler and Perkins + Will in Chicago. Those are going out first thing in the morning. It will be exciting to hear back from both of those firms.
I heard back from Dale & Associates in Jackson-- They offered me the internship!
I also heard back from Slick Design in Chicago-- They offered me the internship if I didn't mind it being unpaid... I can't do that right now. I feel like that would be such a fun job (they design night clubs, retail spaces, restaurants, and furniture) but if they are such a small firm, I don't want to get stuck in a place where I have no means to move up in that firm later on.

For more baking fun... today I've made LT's chocolate, peanut butter, oat-meal cookies! Amazing! go to her blog to get the recipe, super easy and super good!!! It's listed under R for Recipe.

Saturday, March 1, 2008

Behind the Scenes

Now that you've seen the fierce party we threw (see the post below if you havent!), let's go behind the scenes to see what happened to get us there!

We made all the food ourselves for the party and I found this really great recipe for 'smoked tomato gazpacho.' It sounded easy enough and was definately different which is what I always look for when I choose recipes. I know I'm new to the blogging world so for those of you who don't know, or haven't been invited to dinner--- I love to cook! Love love love to cook! If this whole 'design thing' doesnt work out for me, I hope I end up being a personal chef to someone fabulous! Anyway--- back to the tomato soup!

The recipe said to put the tomatoes in boiling water, to take them out and peel the skin off, to cut them in half and de-seed them then for the kicker--- put WOOD CHIPS into the bottom of an aluminum pan, place the tomato halves on a glazing rack and put the glazing rack into the pan above the wood chips. whew!- 30 minutes in one sentence is a lot to take in! The recipe said to put the pan on a very hot eye on the stove and allow the tomatoes to "HEAVY SMOKE" for 3- 4 minutes. (heavy smoking inside the house should have been my first tip off... NEVER DO THAT!) So I wrapped the entire bundle in aluminum foil (as the recipe said) so that the smoke didnt escape into the kitchen.

I put the pan on the eye and watched it for a second. (Smoke escapes from aluminum packets if you didnt know.) So it was seeping out, but not at an alarming rate so I just pulled the battery out of the smoke detector so that it wouldnt go off. When I got back into the ktichen, there was thick black smoke puffing from the bottom of the pan... the pan was obviously burning so I moved it off the eye and set it on the counter so that I could turn off the stove. When I looked back over at the pan, there were puffs of green smoke coming from underneath pan--- the formica counter top was burning!!! NEVER A DULL MOMENT! I grabbed the pan again and ran out of the kitchen, through the living room and onto the porch. I set the pan down on the porch--- now that I look back, I dont really know why my first reaction was to take the smoking pan outside, I guess just to get the smokingness out of the house...
It wasnt even that easy to do. I had to hold the pan in front of me and inhale smoke as I ran...

So I left the tomatoes on the porch while I went to check on the smokey kitchen. When I got back there was a nice char mark that was still smoking on the counter top--- how unfortunate!

Once I got the windows open and recovered the tomatoes from outside, I continued the recipe and finished the soup!--- Which turned out great! They certainly provided that smoked flavor!

Hooray for adventures! Oh, and don't fret over our counter top... there had obviously been other unfortunate incidents because there are prevous battle scars. (Mine, however is the newest, most obvious, and largest of them all. I win!)

Experiential Success!!!

About a month ago two good friends on the executive board for the National Organization of Minority Architecture Students (NOMAS) asked me to help them put on a reception for their annual symposium. They showed me pictures from last year's reception and then said they wanted to do something no one had ever really seen and something that no one would really expect. We absolutely accomplished it!

On a small budget we were able to create points of interest using the 'fateful light boxes' (see post 'Foglesong, be reasonable'); food in the theme 'kiddie food all grown up;' a fantastic lighting exhibit and a fun atmosphere for the students, faculty and panelists to enjoy after the conference.

On the menu: 1- ham & cheese & arugula sandwiches 2- pb&j with mint 3-fruit skewers 4- baby carrots 5- gummy bears 6-smoked tomato gazpacho + cheese & crackers (for our take on grilled cheese & tomato soup) 7- strawberry, orange, and lemon jello 8-goldfish crackers 9-4 types of rice crispy treats a.plain b.chocolate c.peanut butter chocolate AND TO DRINK: strawberry pineapple spritzers (we liked to call them--- they were really Brandy's famed jello punch!) Everything was a huge hit! People were so excited to see things like jello and gummy bears and rice crispy treats--- I think it brought about a slight reminiscent quality to the night.

For decor, other than the lighting and the light boxes, we added goldfish (real ones) in glass bowls, a huge orange curtain that was back-lit, and amazing flower arangements done by my dear friend Angelia! When I told her about the fish she immediately said "let's do 'nests' of flowers for a water(fish) and air(birds) feel!" They were perfect.