Sunday, November 21, 2010

Cure for the Sunday Blues


The Sunday Blues. For me, its an inevitable part of the week's end. As soon as 6 o'clock hits, I start getting anxious about the following work week. Time to clean, time to do laundry, time to make dinner, figure out what I'm going to wear tomorrow, take the dog out and forget to take the 30 minutes of relaxing "me time" I had promised to myself earlier in the morning. If you're like me, and suffer from "The Sunday Blues," you could probably use a little something to lighten the mood. Here are a few things that are making me happy right now.

Watch the Aurora Borealis Live (Through the Canadian Space Agency!)

Artist Re-Interprets Harry Potter into a Space Opera (Also check out Her Disney Gallery!)


Burst of Beaden- Artist Jon Klassen's site




Star Trek Bottle Opener (gifted by the lovely Sitara)


Dance Party For One! (Kaskade Ft. Dragonette: Fire in Your New Shoes)




Dreamy (Florence and the Machine- Cosmic Love)




 Ripley, my rescue dog!! (gratuitous puppy photo)
I found her through Petfinder.com. Please consider a rescue if you're looking for a pet.


Virginia Fall Foliage



Do you have a cure for the Sunday Blues?

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Sunday, October 10, 2010

Breakfast of Champions


Notice the USDA certified organic label at the bottom. 
And to answer your question, YES, it was frakkin' delicious.

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Friday, October 8, 2010

"Can you even match my keyboard to my dress?"


Remember this post? Well, a while back I was actually gifted this keyboard by some very generous friends of ours. (Thanks Liz!) Well, I finally got around to hooking up to my keyboard and it makes me so happy. I feel like I need a new, white monitor to match. This thing really is amazing.
So pretty!

Deceptively plain!


video
Keyboard in action. This is "Rainbow Mode." I currently have it on "spark mode" which means the keys only light up when I press them. It reminds me of a thunderstorm on the white base.

And here is a random Ripley photo just because:


What is your favourite"tech-cessory?"


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Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Boozy Cupcakes

Although Chris is the chef in this relationship, sometimes I come across recipes that sound far too delectable not to try. (Especially one that involves 3 different types of alcohol.) In this case, my BFF Stephanie mentioned these treats in passing and I had to give them a go.

These beauties combine two of my favourite earthly things: chocolate and beer. They are the brilliant brainchild of Deb over at Smitten Kitchen. 


Guiness and butter: The start of a beautiful friendship.

This must be how Paula Deen enjoys her beer.

Somehow, a giant knife slipped into the picture again.
 
 Chocolate, beer, butter, flour sugar. I should have just grabbed a spoon.

I've got a golden tiiiiicket! Also, a bar of chocolate.

Fresh out of the oven!
 
Holes for the whiskey chocolate ganache filling. 
You know you wanna.

Bailey's Irish Cream frosting. (Chris said it looked like larva. YUM!)
 
 
**Check out smittenkitchen for more amazing recipes!

Do you like to bake or cook? What is your favourite recipe?



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Monday, September 20, 2010

Saturday

Most of my Saturdays are spent indulging my love of sleeping in. There's just something about waking up from the week prior and snuggling back down into the down comforter, just because I can.


Typical Saturday A.M.
(Thanks Chris, for catching me in all my glory!!)

Then there's the food. I'm usually luck enough to wake up to coffee and some sort of delicious breakfast being made. (My fiance has set the bar pretty high for himself.)

 (Toasted English muffin and fritatta, with OJ and coffee on the side)

Eventually I get some inspiration to be productive (which usually just involves making lists and then getting distracted by some trashy reality show like Jerseylicious or Bridezillas.) By that point, Chris has given in to the adorable fuzzy face of Ripley (who is "not allowed on the couch") and the two of them begin the arduous task of watching food network re-runs.

(from these pictures, you would never think my dog to be a little on the rambunctious side)


Pay no attention to the stark white walls. We've only lived here for 10 months.


What is your favourite Saturday morning ritual?

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Monday, September 13, 2010

Blog Lovin'



If you check out the right hand side of my blog you’ll notice a list of blogs and some informational websites that I usually check on a daily basis. Besides the major news websites, these are some of the tools I use to keep updated with the latest in style, science, home improvement and, of course, geekery. Here is a low-down on my ever-expanding list of faves:


100 Layer Cake-  A wedding blog with beautiful photography, and lots of inspiration.

A La Mode- A style/fashion/beauty blog managed by the lovely Tara with info on trends (good and bad) and deals for those of us on a budget. LOVE the Target picks and spotlights.

Apartment Therapy- A design blog with sub-sites for tech, kids, green living, and recipes. Its where I go to daydream about living in more than a 2 bedroom apartment with white walls. 

Carrots 'N Cake- A healthy living blog by  Tina, who tries to showcase her efforts to eat healthy, but everything in moderation. 

Drawsgood Illustration and Design Blog- The artwork of Michael B. Myers, Jr. Lots of amazing traditional line art as well as digital media. Not updated very often, but lots of older stuff to keep you occupied.

Fabulously Broke...In the city- "I am a 20-something year old who got out of $60,000 of debt in 18 months, earning $65,000 (gross) a year." That pretty much got me hooked. I will be the first one to admit that I have Dom Perignon tastes on a PBR budget. Lots of good advice about living within your means, and cutting out all the extraneous stuff in life.

Felicia Day- Official website and blog, of the famous red-headed gamer girl, and creator of web-series "The Guild."

Further Dispatches- The continuation of LOST star Jorge Garcia's blog. Lots of "LOL's" to be had here. 

Healthy Tipping Point- Another healthy living blog by Caitlin. She too, strives for balance between getting lots of exercise, eating to fuel the body, and drinking delicious beer!

Her Universe- Website and blog of Ashley Eckstein, voice of Ahsoka Tano of Star Wars: The Clone Wars. Created her own line of Star Wars memorabilia especially made for women. 

io9- THE website for all geek news. Check out the latest trailer for the new HBO mini-series, "The Game of Thrones" based on the books by George R.R. Martin.

LettisLove- Blog by one of my best friends, Erin, chronicling her adventures as a new mom.

Loremaster- My friend Matt has made this the place for all things D&D (the real one, hehe) and RPG. He free-lances for Wizards of the Coast, so there is a lot of original content.
Neil Gaiman's Journal- Written by one of my favourite author's. I just recently found out that he writes for the new Dr. Who!

Once Wed- Lots of DIY style, for brides on a budget. Love the photography and easily accessible design ideas.

The Chloe Conspiracy- Style blog by Chloe who manages to always look amazing while mixing Forever 21 with Miu Miu. I always visit this site first thing in the morning to find out the newest online deals of the day for my favourite e-tailers.
The Bellydancing Gamer- Run by the beautiful "Sitara", another good friend of mine. She does it all. Science, gaming, shopping, fashion and of course, dancing!

Dr. Michio Kaku- I read "About Time", and "The Physics of Star Trek" way back in the day. His website features all of the awesome "what-ifs" of science, explained for the layman to understand. 
Young House Love- Home improvement website by a young couple from Richmond, VA. They have literally renovated every sq. ft. of their one story brick home and it is now gracing the pages of design magazines and blogs everywhere! Lots of tutorials that I can't wait to test out once we have a house.






If there are any blogs, websites, collections of madness out there that you think I might enjoy please leave a link in the comment section. I love new material!

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Sunday, September 12, 2010

"Maww-iage...is what bwings us together...today"


As some of you may or may not know, I am getting married in 4 months. Since I might post a few wedding related topics between now and then, I thought I’d give you a glimpse into my wedding vision.
I definitely think tradition has its place, but with our eclectic tastes, I wanted as many personal touches that I could get, without breaking the bank, or missing the mark on a cohesive theme.
Now, you can go ahead and put this:


And this:


right out of your minds. (Although to be honest, I have threatened my fiancé with the storm trooper bridal party idea more than once.)


Chris and I are getting married in January, and the first thing I thought of, when picturing a winter wonderland, was The Chronicles of Narnia. Now before you start envisioning talking lions and centaurs, I was thinking more about the environment and the mood of the film. My vision consists of a subtle winter wedding that’s more about evergreens, candlelight, and stars, than the usual snowflakes and holly berries.
Here is a “mood board,” where I’ve collected a few images that have been inspiring me throughout the planning process.


I would also love to include some of my favorite instrumental pieces from The Lord of The Rings and Braveheart to name a few. We are having our ceremony in a Catholic church, so first I’ll have to check the rules regarding secular music being played. In my wildest dreams, there would be a string quartet playing during the ceremony and cocktail hour, but I’m just not sure if it’s in the budget yet.

So everything is coming together, slowly but surely. I make sure to watch "Bridezillas" every Sunday morning to keep myself in check.



Tell me about the most fun wedding you ever attended, and why it was so.

(Also, please look for a Dungeons and Diamonds face-lift coming in the near future!)

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Friday, September 10, 2010

M.A.C. Wonder Woman Collection


MAC cosmetics recently announced they are teaming with DC Comics to create a limited edition line inspired by Wonder Woman. This is so very “dungeons and diamonds” that I might just have to take a trip to my local MAC counter to investigate when the products are released. 


 
  
                                  (source)                                                                                             (source)

 "MAC Cosmetics said Wednesday that the company is partnering with DC Comics’ Wonder Woman to create a limited edition color cosmetics collection featuring the illustrated superhero. Set for a spring 2011 launch at all MAC locations worldwide, the lineup is expected to include lipsticks, eye shadows, blush and nail polish ranging in price from $13 to $49.50. (No word on whether metal-deflecting bracelets are part of the collection.)" - WWD

In addition, DC Comics also unveiled Wonder Woman’s new look, to go along with an alternative history that's been written for a particular story arc. Black leggings, a red bustier, and black leather jacket replace the old red leotard, hotpants and knee boots. I think the new look would allow her to blend a bit better with the mere mortals. Although, with the few comics I have read, that doesn't seem to be one of her main concerns.


Look for Wonder Woman’s new gear and background to be introduced in Issue #600.

What do you think? Is this a change for the better, or worse?
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Wednesday, June 23, 2010

RIPLEY _ _ _ has joined your party!

So last post I mentioned that we had a new addition to our household. Behold, Ripley! (Yes, like the lazy video-gamer, we kept the name she had when we adopted her. We'll just pretend its a reference to Alien.)


At the adoption event when I first met her.

Chillin in the shade at the adoption event.

DERP!

Look at those Yoda ears!

She's just resting her bum is all.

We adopted Ripley (aka Professor Longbody) from a rescue organization in DC called K-9 Lifesavers which is based out of DC/Southern Maryland. We saw her first on Petfinder.com and I was smitten with her 2 different color eyes. I drove to an adoption event to meet her and the rest is history. After 2 weeks she can already sit, shake and lay down. We're taking her to obedience classes starting July 12 to help teach her a few more "dog manners."
Having a dog has been a big adjustment to our schedules, but she is my crazy little furball and I love her. It's also increased our activity like crazy, and I'm sure my waistline approves. We've found a local dog park where she can socialize and run her little heart out, which is great, considering we don't have a yard. 
 Iif you are interested in getting a pet, I encourage adoption! There are lots of loving animals out there who need a good home.

Do you have a pet?  (Hint: If the answer is yes, post a picture. I want to see!)
If you could have any pet in the world, what would it be?

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Tuesday, June 22, 2010

"Shot Through the Heart...and you're to blame"

Greetings readers! I am back from my slightly unexpected absence. We have a "new addition" to our family, in the way of a very precocious little black and white dog. (More on her in an upcoming post!) She has taken up a lot of our time recently, but D&Di has returned with more geeky goodness than ever! More on her in an upcoming post!

Today I bring you a very simple modern day vampire hunting ensemble. Where are the silver bullets and the UV Ray guns you ask? Well, I thought about it, and the things I highlighted here can be purchased with ease on the internet, and a lot of brick and mortar stores. (And in the case of the stakes, procured from your own back yard!)

As Buffy showed the world, there is no need to let style fall by the wayside when battling the creatures of the night. 



1. Joie, "The Pepper" suede messenger bag, (here) $265.00
2. Low Luv x Erin Wasson, cross pendant necklace, (here) $113.00
3. Lars Enander, Gransfors Bruks Ancient Collection Battle Axe, (here) $876.99
4.Barnett, Panzer V Crossbow package, (here) 189.99
5. Puma, tank top, (here) $60.00
6. KRMA, "Dean" leather jacket, (here) $598.00
7. The Green Dragon, curly walnut vampire stake, (here) $27.00
8. Enzo Angiolini, "Zoot" boot (here) $99.00




What would you include in your vampire hunting kit? 


Also, check out my newest article over at Loremaster.org. : "Challenge your Self/yourself"



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Thursday, June 3, 2010

Friday Favorites

Here is a quick re-cap of some of my favorite things this week.

Coffee
I really want to find a decent way to make iced coffee at home for the summertime.(But really, I'll take it any way I can get it.) Do any of you readers have any suggestions, or recipes? I used to work at Starbucks, but their ice coffee brewing method never seems to work quite right at home
(This mug makes a bold statement. Get yours here.)


Avatar: The Last Airbender
I was (pleasantly) surprised by this Nickelodeon cartoon. Marius and Sitara have actually been singing its praises for a while now. I had caught commercials here and there but dismissed it as another "lowest common denominator" anime. But during a cleaning spree in my apartment last night, it happened to be on when I was looking for something to put on TV in the background. After ONE episode I was hooked. It is actually NOT an anime, but a really smart, well edited, mature cartoon.
And let's keep it real, I <3 this weird animal companion from the show (Which has a name but I lovingly call "flying bison thingy")


Making Wedding Arrangements
We finally found a venue!!! I have actually started to get excited about planning, rather than getting frustrated that I had made ZERO progress. We are about 6 months out now, so I figure I should probably start dress shopping soon. (Thank jeebus p90x just came in the mail today!)

Puppy
Our new puppy will surely get her own post this weekend, (we pick her up on Saturday) but here is a teaser.
Pet-Finder.com - An awesome resource for adopting a rescue.

Late Night Vacuuming 
Every night this week I have gotten the urge to vacuum way past the time when any normal person would want to vacuum. Have I mentioned yet that I love to clean? I also love fresh laundry, no dirty dishes, and clean floors.


I think that's pretty much as random as it gets. That's what keeps life interesting though.

What were your favorite things this week?
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Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Welcome to the Jungle

In the past few months, my fiancee has introduced me to the wonderful world of Warhammer.
Warhammer is a miniatures game created by Games Workshop, whose HQ is based out of the U.K. (They even have a Warhammer themed pub called Bugman's Bar where you can order a pint of your favourite brew and play a quick game, or discuss battle reports with the local nerds.) As the title suggests, it is essentially a wargame in which two armies built with an equal number of points, go head to head on the battlefield. It is equal parts skill (building your army, deciding which attributes to give your soldiers) and luck (roll of the dice.)

One of our good friends "Marius" has been plotting a campaign for quite some time now, and we have spent the last couple of weekends play-testing in the jungle setting he has developed. I am interested to see where this campaign goes, and I want to pull out all the stops. I will be creating a blog based on yet-to-be-named campaign, where you will find background stories on all of the armies, profiles of the players, and battle reports after each session.

The armies disembark on the shoreline. I am playing Ogres, my fiancee has the Brettonians, "Eurydice" is fielding a sweet Dogs of War group (with a BEAR), Mike G. is playing Chaos Warriors, "Sitara" has the wood elves and Matt J. (of http://www.loremaster.org) is playing Daemons.

I only had my iPhone on me at the time, so the quality of the photos aren't that great, but you get the idea.



And naturally, when the concentration of nerd is high, you get stuff like this.
Are you currently running a warhammer campaign, or playing in one? 
Are there any other Warhammer topics you'd like to see written about? 



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Monday, May 31, 2010

Be Prepared

First, D&D is back! (Can I even use those symbols together without getting sued?)

Second, Happy Memorial Day! My father served in the US Army for 25 years and my fiancee served in the Air Force for 6, and both say they're better people for it. To those who defend our country, (or used to) I say THANK YOU.

Third, I had a doughnut (spell check would not allow DONUT) this morning for breakfast, and boy oh boy was it tasty.

Survival of the Alive-est
A few weeks ago, before one of our weekend Warhammer sessions, Jon, Liz, Chris and I were pontificating on the subject of survival during a "hypothetical" zombie epidemic. Jon happened to hear of a brilliant  item called a "bug-out" bag. This is a bag packed with gear that you would need to survive at least 72 hours in case you had to "bug-out" of your house quickly. In case you didn't already have one put together, I have given you some options below.
Your bug-out bag should be small enough for you to carry on your own, but big enough to store the essentials. They need to be durable enough to withstand the elements and a some "wear and tear." (Especially the "tear" part if we're talking about zombies.) The first style, is a backpack design which leaves both hands free, in case you need to carry weapons, children, or pets. (Or one of each?) The second is a messenger style, which also leaves both hands free. The last example is a hand carry, which if heavy enough, could also be used as a blunt weapon.

 
1. SPEC.-OPS."T.H.E. Pack", available (here) $179.99
2. UTG "Multi-Functional Tactical Messenger Bag", available (here) $28.50
3.Klein Tools 20" Canvas Tool Bag, available (here) $60.87




Even more important than the bag part of your BO bag, is what is contained within. As much as I would like to include lip-gloss, some instant Starbucks coffee, and a fashion magazine or two, the BO bag needs to be pared down to hold only the basics. (Although it's questionable how long I would survive without a cup of coffee.)

1. Rand McNally, "Map of Northern Virginia", available (here) $4.70
2. Morakniv™ " Forest Exclusive Model 311BB 4 1/4", available (here) $99.00
3. Adventure Medical Kits, "UltraLight/Watertight Medical Kit, available (here) $36.00
4. Surefire, "E2L Outdoorsman Dual Output LED Flashlight," available (here) $159.00
5. Eton, "FR400 Special Edition Pink Crank Powered Emergency Radio with AM/FM, NOAA and TV-VHF", available (here) $58.99
6. Glock "19 Pistol, 9mm," available (here) $459.00
7. Datrex, "2400 Kcal per ration Emergency survival food bar," available (here) $5.19/12 pack
8. Steri-Pen "Traveler Hand-held UV Water Purifier," available (here) $60.00
9. Evian bottled water, available (here) $34.99/24 pack
10. Ultimate Survival Technologies "StrikeForce Fire Starter," available (here) $24.00
11. Max Brooks, "The Zombie Survival Guide," available (here) $9.50


Is there anything you think I should have included and didn't?
Do you have your own version of a bug out bag?

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Monday, May 10, 2010

On Location

With summer just around the corner, I have been day dreaming about all of the many exotic places I would love to go on vacation. I love the outdoors, so I would be happy on a beach, in a forest, in the mountains, and yes, even on a snow-capped mountain. 

It's a big, beautiful planet so there are lots of choices for all of the aforementioned choices. If we're talking day-dreams though, you might as well dream big. And what could be dreamier than visiting one of the seriously amazing settings seen in some of the most epic movies and television shows.

New Zealand: Lord of the Rings

Nelson Region, NZ
Image: TripAdvisor



Wellington Region, NZ
Image: Wellington, NZ, Botanical Society


Taupo Region, NZ
Image: http://timmjunge.files.wordpress.com
Middle Earth
 
For information regarding "Middle Earth" tours, check out the following sites:

United Kingdom: The Chronicles of Narnia

Glenfinnan, Scotland
 
Image:  ParadiseConnection.com


Gloucester Cathedral, Great Britain
 
Image: Business Week 

Oxford University, Great Britain
Image: Veritaserum.com 

Hogwarts
 Image: PotterForums.com

Harry Potter Location Tour Information:

Harry Potter Fan Trips  (This is amazing!!)



Hawaii, United States: LOST

North Shore, Oahu 
 Image: Mark Benko.com


Kualoa Ranch, Oahu
 Image: AffordableHawaiianTours.com
K'olau Mountains, Oahu
 Image: Pono-loa.com
New Otherton
 Image: lotsafunmaps.com




If money was no object, where would you go on your dream vacation?
Is there a set from a film or tv show that you'd love to visit?
 

 


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