Saturday, August 17, 2013

DIY Wooden Square Block Craft - Delta Gamma

I have always been a crafty person. And with such gifts, comes a lot of responsibility. Such as... crafting for others... For me at least, crafting for others is an enjoyable activity. I just finished a project for my cousin who is in Delta Gamma. The Anchor is DG's symbol and stands for Hope.

This is a great project to do with sorority letters, or with a monogram! Or just use your initials and a symbol in the middle. Like a cross, a heart. Anything!

First you're going to need three pieces of wood. Put down a base coat and keep painting on all sides until you get your desired colors. I love pink and I had originally painted these pink; however, I ran out and went with a salmon-pink instead that i already had three bottles of... I love how it came out! Pink, Bronze, and Blue are DG's colors so this worked out great! I didn't need any materials except for the wooden squares. You can scavenger up pretty much anything for this project. You can add beads, ribbons, tissue paper flowers... Anyway...

The anchor was the hardest. But I just looked at a picture online and kept at it until I got it right. If you want you can get a stencil but stencils always seems more difficult than free hand.

After writing the D and G I outlined in blue and then added glitter!

Then I put three gems in four of the corners. And two on the anchor.

And there you have it. A perfect, easy, and interchangeable gift! Or make one for yourself! As a sorority girl myself, I have plenty of crafts. My entire wall and two shelves hold my crafts. And then the rest of my apartment holds the rest...

Anyway, stock up on wooden squares before the holidays and make some for your own cousins!

DIY Paper Lanterns

My apartment is looking a little dreary, mostly because I moved in a couple months ago and during the summer I have had trouble getting motivated to decorate! Anyway, I wanted to make some cute lanterns to hang in the archway between the living room and dining room.

First I chose a color scheme that I liked. Choosing a color scheme would have been much easier if I had gone to the craft store first. But I wanted to get into my project right away, and I made due with what I had. Which ended up perfect! I wanted all my lanterns to have a similar look without being the same colors. I chose green and grays for the outside paper. And pinks, blues, and orange patterns for the inside.

I would recommend using paper from a pack. It's easy to mix and match and they all have a common theme that will allow the colors to flow. Otherwise you need to be cognizant of your colors or you might get a messy look. After you have your papers, cut off any end pieces you have.

Then start to cut one inch or 1/2 inch flaps across the paper. Make sure to cut vertically on your design. It does not matter the size of your flaps as long as they are pretty even. Leave about an inch at the top without any cuts. You do not want twenty strips just a paper with a bunch of flaps.

Oliver wanted to help too.

Next tape the bottom of the paper together. You could skip this step if you folded the paper in half and then begun to cut strips; however, I did not want to have a crease in my lantern.

Choose the lantern you want on the outside. Then make a circle with your paper and hot glue the top of one flap to the top of the other flap on both sides. You want their to be a slit between the sides you are gluing together. You will then make a circle!

Take the paper that you want on the inside of the lantern. Make a circle and glue one flap on top of the other flap. You want this one to be smaller so you are gluing flaps together without a slit. You could also cut off one slit completely and just attach the tops like you did on the outside paper.

Slide the smaller paper inside the larger paper.

Push both sides together to make them plump up. You can get them to stay by attaching strings on opposite sides of the lantern to create the correct height and bounce.

Add some ribbon on the top to hang and some ribbon along the top and bottom, and you have a beautiful paper lantern!

Still in the process of hanging and making lanterns. I'll be sure to post my finished project!

Thursday, June 20, 2013

Dancing in the Rain

Dancing in the rain. For some this humble rain dance is a poor excuse to wear a white T-shirt and show off your ta-ta's to your overly attractive neighbors, for others it is a spiritual awakening of the senses. Yeah, let's go with the second one. For some oddly primitive reason I love the rain. Rain is the blood of the earth. It flows over mountain tops, streams, and valleys. Rain seeps its way through nature leaving only an abundance of life in its footsteps. In some distant life I was a Native American Princess. Nature is so incredibly beautiful to me. There is nothing I love more than being close to the earth. Perhaps it is the Taurus within me but I love Nature. The Beach. The Forest. The Mountains. I love the beauty that is this earth.

Rain is a constant reminder that we are delicate creatures. Rain is a constant reminder that there is something greater than the individual. Rain is a constant reminder of something greater than human-consciousness. Rain is beautiful. Rain is peaceful. Rain is life.

This, and an abundance of other reasons, is why I love Jersey Summer. I love hearing the comforting trickle of rain at my window. I love hearing the sky's thunderous cry. And I love spinning, running, dancing - lifting my hands up to the celestial sphere. The feeling of warm summer rain on my cheeks, soaking my shirt, my sskin, my feet. I love this constant reminder of the beauty of the earth, and the constant flow of time that is life.

Summer Solstice has failed me again

July 20th, 2013. One more day until Summer. Well, sorry Gregorian Calendar but I do not think that this summer Solstice has been all too accurate. Summer is what you make of it. For a tired-over-worked college student, summer starts as soon as that last final is turned in and done. But for me, I have not been so lucky. I was painfully sick the last couple months of the semester and as a result, I still have five incompletes. Five. Incompletes. So no, despite spending day after day in the library as the rest of my friends travel the world, get drunk, and go to the beach - my summer has not begun. My summer will not begin until I gather my inner strength, go to the library, and actually work my butt off. A feat that is terrible difficult for someone like me who has spent the entirety of her academic career floating on by.

Well, reactivating this blog is my attempt at gaining my inner strength and motivation. It is also at the nagging of my mother who participates in the "Writers Way" program in which she writes for a little bit each day to find her inner motivation, (it's a variety of prompts though I do not know all the specifics).

Well, I hope everyone else is enjoying their summer and that I can find my inner motivation and allow my summer to start.

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

Once a Freshman, Always a Freshman?

Here I am: 12:10. Sitting on my newly made college bed, ecstatic for my next year of school. I have been in training all week, and finally I have been able to relax with an unpacked room. It's beautiful. A little bit bigger than last year, but in all honestly -- pretty small. My things are neat (other than wall decorations) but there's still not enough room despite the bigger room.

I am so excited for school to start. I want the freshman to move in already, so I can introduce myself and get them ready for a spectacular year. I have Hall President. It is my job to spearhead the Hall Government and ensure that our Residence Hall is an efficient community. I am not an RA, as my job is to include the residents into the Hall Government.

Freshman Halls are known for being rowdy, my only hope is that I can separate myself as a sophomore resident but not seen as different because I am Hall President. The bottom line: I'm a resident. I don't want another freshman year, but I want to be equal too.

I am sure it'll be successful, but hopefully I can focus on my academics despite my strenuous (but rewarding) extracurricular! I'm already at a time crunch and finding conflicts left and right!

Thursday, August 23, 2012

Read The Observer's Top 100 Novels of All Time

As a bit of a literary fanatic, let's see how far I have come to reading the Top 100 Novels of All Time. I have decided I liked this list better because it included novels not of the 21st and 20th century. Let's get started, shall we?

Read The Observer's Top 100 Novels of All Time

  1. Don Quizote Miguel De Cervantes
  2. Pilgrim's Progress John Bunyan
  3. Robinson Crusoe Daniel Defoe   
    1. It was an adolescent version, but it definitely counts!
  4. Gulliver's Travels Jonathan Swift 
  5. Tom Jones Henry Fielding 
  6. Clarissa Samuel Richardson
  7. Tristram Shandy Laurence Sterne 
  8. Dangerous Liaisons Pierre Choderlos De Laclos 
  9. Emma Jane Austen
    1. Saw the play, loved the play.
  10. Frankenstein Mary Shelley 
  11. Nightmare Abbey Thomas Love Peacock
  12. The Black Sheep Honore De Balzac
  13. The Charterhouse of Parma Stendhal 
  14. The Count of Monte Cristo Alexandre Dumas  
  15. Sybil Benjamin Disraeli 
  16. David Copperfield Charles Dickens 
  17. Wuthering Heights Emily Bronte 
  18. Jane Eyre Charlotte Bronte 
    1. Technically I never got through the last 100 pages, need to work on that.
  19. Vanity Fair William Makepeace Thackeray
  20. The Scarlet Letter Nathaniel Hawthorne 
    1.  I would have enjoyed it more if I had not read it in school
  21. Moby-Dick Herman Melville 
  22. Madame Bovary Gustave Flaubert 
  23. The Woman in White Wilkie Collins 
  24. Alice's Adventures In Wonderland Lewis Carroll 
    1. Great book but a disturbing childhood favorite.
  25. Little Women Louisa M. Alcott 
    1.  Beautiful on so many levels, I loved this novel!
  26. The Way We Live Now Anthony Trollope 
  27. Anna Karenina Leo Tolstoy  
  28. Daniel Deronda George Eliot  
  29. The Brothers Karamazov Fyodor Dostoevsky 
  30. The Portrait of a Lady Henry James 
  31. Huckleberry Finn Mark Twain  
  32. Dr Jekyll and Mr Hyde Robert Louis Stevenson 
  33. Three Men in a Boat Jerome K. Jerome  
  34. The Picture of Dorian Gray Oscar Wilde 
  35. The Diary of a Nobody George Grossmith 
  36. Jude the Obscure Thomas Hardy 
  37. The Riddle of the Sands Erskine Childers 
  38. The Call of the Wild Jack London 
  39. Nostromo Joseph Conrad 
  40. The Wind in the Willows Kenneth Grahame  
  41. In Search of Lost Time Marcel Proust 
  42. The Rainbow D. H. Lawrence 
  43. The Good Soldier Ford Madox Ford 
  44. The Thirty-Nine Steps John Buchan 
  45. Ulysses James Joyce 
  46. Mrs Dalloway Virginia Woolf 
  47. A Passage to India E. M. Forster 
  48. The Great Gatsby F. Scott Fitzgerald 
  49. The Trial Franz Kafka 
  50. Men Without Women Ernest Hemingway  
  51. Journey to the End of the Night Louis-Ferdinand Celine  
  52. As I Lay Dying William Faulkner 
  53. Brave New World Aldous Huxley 
  54. Scoop Evelyn Waugh 
  55. USA John Dos Passos 
  56. The Big Sleep Raymond Chandler 
  57. The Pursuit Of Love Nancy Mitford   
  58. The Plague Albert Camus 
  59.  Nineteen Eighty-Four George Orwell 
  60. Malone Dies Samuel Beckett 
  61. Catcher in the Rye J.D. Salinger  
  62. Wise Blood Flannery O'Connor  
  63. Charlotte's Web E. B. White  
  64. The Lord Of The Rings J. R. R. Tolkien 
  65. Lucky Jim Kingsley Amis 
  66. Lord of the Flies William Golding 
    1. Terribly sexist book, I have read it (unfortunately).
  67. The Quiet American Graham Greene 
  68. On the Road Jack Kerouac 
  69. Lolita Vladimir Nabokov  
  70. The Tin Drum Gunter Grass 
  71. Things Fall Apart Chinua Achebe 
  72. The Prime of Miss Jean Brodie Muriel Spark 
  73. To Kill A Mockingbird Harper Lee 
  74. Catch-22 Joseph Heller 
  75. Herzog Saul Bellow 
  76. One Hundred Years of Solitude Gabriel Garcia Marquez 
  77. Mrs Palfrey at the Claremont Elizabeth Taylor 
  78. Tinker Tailor Soldier Spy John Le Carre 
  79. Song of Solomon Toni Morrison  
  80. Bottle Factory Outing Beryl Bainbridge 
  81. The Executioner's Song Norman Mailer  
  82. If on a Winter's Night a Traveller Italo Calvino 
  83. A Bend in the River V. S. Naipaul 
  84. Waiting for the Barbarians J.M. Coetzee 
  85. Housekeeping Marilynne Robinson 
  86. Lanark Alasdair Gray 
  87. The New York Trilogy Paul Auster  
  88. The BFG Roald Dahl 
  89. The Periodic Table Primo Levi 
  90. Money Martin Amis 
  91. An Artist of the Floating World Kazuo Ishiguro  
  92. Oscar And Lucinda Peter Carey 
  93. The Book of Laughter and Forgetting Milan Kundera 
  94. Haroun and the Sea af Stories Salman Rushdie
  95.  La Confidential James Ellroy 
  96. Wise Children Angela Carter 
  97. Atonement Ian McEwan  
  98. Northern Lights Philip Pullman 
  99. American Pastoral Philip Roth 
  100. Austerlitz W. G. Sebald 
I thought I was a lot more versed in literature, but this is only one list of "top novels"!

Wednesday, August 22, 2012

Get My Beauty License

Funny story: My mother has never been interested in makeup, fashion, or hair. While all the other littler girls had fabulous fashionista mom's shopping at Limited Too, we were shopping at Target -- and the stuff never was cute (no offense to my mother, her fashion sense has always been fine, just not the vogue reader). She claims it's because her mom was beautiful and loved fashion and makeup. She says that it was a bit of silent rebellion for her. That and before conditioner there was nothing my mom could do to tame her curls but keep them afro short. Anyway, my silent rebellion (though I had a real rebellion too) was through fashion. I have always adored everything fashion and hair related. However, since both fashion and hair are more difficult to maintain (I can barely afford to get my hair cut and died once a year, not to mention every six weeks. Let alone Jimmy Choos, a Birkin Bag, or Dolce & Gabbana sunglasses) I have turned to make-up. Although every so often I splurge at Sephora and pow through my pay check, I feel that I am able to prim the one thing I have the most control over: my face. Let's face it, I do not have the patience to do my hair the exact way I want it (straight or completely un-frizzy) every day, or even the stamina to work out twice a day and get that banging bod. So, my face: that's my pallet and that's what I am good at.

Anyway, I am naturally great with makeup (funny because my mother doesn't exactly know the difference between an eye pencil and a bro pencil -- there's not much of a difference, but still). I do it for myself all the time, my friends ask me to do it all the time, even my mom asks me to do it once in a blue moon. So I'm good at it. But I'm not good enough at it. I want to know the best products to use, the science of it, and learn more skills. I want a license. Plus, I think it would make excellent college cash. The problem: It's expensive and time consuming.

Wish me luck!

P.S. Enough with bashing my mother, I love her to death and am going to miss her when I go back to school (tomorrow)!