Thrifting Thursday: My Halloween Costume!

This year, I decided to be Peter Pan for Halloween. More specifically, Cathy Rigby in the 1974 stage version of Peter Pan.

I wanted to actually put some effort into my costume this year! So I headed to the closest thrift store and found these for $5 each:

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They look green in real life, I promise.

Then I stopped by Michael’s and got eight 8×11-inch sheets of felt in 2 shades of green and 2 shades of brown. They were only 33 cents each! While nannying, I cut them into small leaves in a similar shape to the leaves on Cathy’s costume, as well as some strips for the wrist bands and a belt.

When I got home yesterday, I started sewing. I finished at 3 today. I sewed the leaves onto the skirt and tank, layering and alternating colors, cut out a belt from which to hang a pouch in lieu of a purse, shortened the skirt, and I was done!

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What did you wear for Halloween?

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Webster’s Wednesday: Satiate

: to satisfy (a need, desire, etc.) fully or to excess

Today, I had pancakes for breakfast. Four of them. On days that I nanny, I usually get up at 10 because I am lazy, but today, I got up at 9:30 so I could make some food. Kurt didn’t want any, so I ate them all. Refer to my first Foodie Friday post for how I make pancakes. I didn’t have Cinnamon Toast Crunch this time though. Sadness. 

By noon, I was on my second bus on my way to Addison’s school to pick her up. And I was hungry again. I texted Kurt, “Is it “sate my hunger” or “satiate my hunger”?” because I don’t have a smart phone and just had to know. I like to know that I’m using words correctly. He said both were correct, but I liked the second better. I like big words. I then said, “Sometimes I think ‘It’s annoying how much I have to eat to satiate my hunger,’ but then I think, ‘Maybe that’s a dangerous thing to think, as I don’t even eat that much anyway.'” He responded with a sad face. I explained that eating food takes so much energy, time, and money, and seems like such a hassle when you can’t afford to grab a bite when you’re out and have only ramen and pancake mix and bread at home. Food has become a struggle. I’ve never struggled with food before. But it really is a thing that I worry about sometimes. I feel indignant it takes so much to satiate that need, to quell my grumbling stomach. Why do humans need so much food? It’s not like I run marathons every day and therefore need to put 5,000 calories into my body so I can burn it all off before bed. I sleep for 10 hours, take the bus, walk a total of maybe a mile all day, and hang out with a 4-year-old who is only awake for 3 of the 5 hours I am with her. I come home and sit on the computer. Where am I expending all this energy that is supposed to be translated from the food I’m not getting? And while we’re asking rhetorical questions, this is the 21st century; why can’t I just snap my fingers and have my favorite food materialize in front of me for no cost? That would be so much easier.

Kurt has just informed me that I’m hungry all the time because I’m not eating enough protein. Welp. Guess I better make use of that lunch meat in the fridge before it goes bad. Gotta keep myself satiated!

Do you ever feel like you just can’t get full? What’s your favorite food? Mine’s chicken pad Thai! 

Newsday Tuesday: 20-year-old Toddler Died Last Thursday

Photo by Getty

You may have heard of a few people in the world who have Progeria, a disease that causes a person to age extremely quickly. These people suffer many health problems that old age brings, as well as some unique ones due to the quickened aging process. But Brooke Greenberg was the opposite. She didn’t age at all. She stopped growing physically at age 6 and died at the age of 20. She maintained the body and cognitive function of the average 1-year-old. 

Brooke was born 1 month early and weighed only 4 pounds. Even in the womb, she did not grow at a normal rate. She’d be healthy for a month, stop growing for a month, then catch up rather quickly, then grow normally again. At birth, she seemed normal except for a hip displacement that would need surgery. Her parents had no idea what was to come. They thought she would grow up happy and healthy. But after her first birthday, and continuing for the next five years, Brooke experienced perforated stomach ulcers, a seizure, and a stroke. Then she stopped growing. Her parents, Howard and Melanie Greenberg, immediately thought to consult several specialists, but no one could diagnose any endocrine or chromosomal abnormalities. Not even human growth hormones yielded any results. The doctors were stumped.

Regardless of all of these questions and stresses, the Greenberg family raised Brooke as if she were any other girl. They have 2 other daughters, one younger and one older than Brooke. She had a distinct personality and a stubbornness about her that was obvious, despite her inability to function like someone her own age. She was a source of joy and love in her family, and she will be dearly missed. Her family hopes that DNA taken from her skin can help doctors find cures to diseases like Alzheimer’s, Parkinson’s, and heart disease. At Brooke’s funeral, Rabbi Andrew Busch said, “While the outside world may have noticed Brooke’s physical stature and been puzzled by her unique development state, she brought joy and love to her family.” Rest in peace.

Source: http://shine.yahoo.com/healthy-living/brooke-greenberg-20-old-8220-toddler-8217-8221-185100345.html

Marriage Monday: Wedding Deets

You want the deets? I got the deets! You don’t want the deets? Too bad!

The Westbay-Morrison wedding was a simple one, at least in comparison to the average wedding these days. But it was very personal and fun. I had so much fun and so did everyone else who went, thank goodness! It all went down on March 30th, 2013, at 2 pm.

Before anyone walked down the aisle, my friends Casey, John, and Caitlin played pretty wedding-y songs until everyone was seated. Friends Jared and Colby acted as ushers, but I don’t have a picture of them! Sadness!

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We walked down the aisle to “Cosmic Love,” by Florence and the Machine. Once all of the bridesmaids and groomsmen had walked down the aisle (I wish I had pictures of this), my cousin Anjie’s daughters, Maya (taller) and Elliot, scattered rose petals. They had asked me at Thanksgiving if they could be flower girls in our wedding, and, as I hadn’t picked anyone yet anyway, said, “Sure!” Apparently they ask everyone they know who gets engaged because they think being flower girls is the coolest thing ever. They looked so cute.

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Both my parents walked me down the aisle together. I carried white roses and blue alstroameria lilies. My mom made her own dress! I found mine in a thrift shop for $20 nearly four years ago.

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Kurt and I decided to add some Scottish tradition to our ceremony. We included the hand-fasting ritual, which signifies the bond between us now that we are married. Also during the ceremony, he pinned a rosette of his tartan that his mom made onto the rosette on my sash, signifying the joining of our two clans. I am wearing a MacGregor tartan sash borrowed from my maternal grandmother, Grace. He is wearing a Morrison tartan kilt his dad bought him. The rest of his outfit was rented. Lexi, a beauty school student I met at a party at my house did my hair, and bridesmaid Christy did my makeup. I decided to forgo a veil and just wear a headband I got at Claire’s. The long pieces of tulle draped over a wire and across the trees were Kurt’s idea!887044_4735087010746_2015255109_o

We had some traditional vows and some personal vows. We made sure to include some nerdy references. He said, “…and years from now, when someone asks me if I still love you, after all this time, I will answer, ‘Always.'” I said, “…and I can’t wait to watch the new episode of Doctor Who with you tonight,” which elicited some laughs. We ended up being so drunk on honeymoon-package champagne by the time we watched it that we had to watch it again the next morning because we couldn’t remember what happened!482818_466598513413344_754612392_n (2)

We walked back down the aisle to “500 Miles” by The Proclaimers, because he moved 1800 miles to be with me and we thought it was appropriate.181078_466598566746672_2036999846_n

The wedding took place at the Ellensburg fairgrounds, where the city holds a rodeo every year. It’s actually a really big thing. Our photographer, Genesis Suarez, had so much fun taking pictures there.483545_466598616746667_1493046923_n

Left to right: Bridesmaids Meredith, Christy, Alyssa, Rachel, Sarah, Maid of Honor Kelle, me, Kurt, Best Man David, Groomsmen Eli, Carl, Drew, Noah, and Silas. I met Christy in high school and Kelle is my cousin, and I met all of the others in college. Kurt has known David since high school, Carl since college, Drew is his cousin, and the others are my brothers!

I had all the girls pick out their own dresses, so that they didn’t have to spend a ton on a dress they’d might only wear once. My mom made all the boys’ vests and bow ties, which was rather difficult, as everyone but my brothers were coming from out of state! 561229_466598686746660_1776664093_n (1)

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Kurt’s mom, Lea, and grandmother, Lois, with Drew. So much Morrison tartan!

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My uncle Mark and Kurt’s dad, Bob, in kilts!

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Even the deejay, my friend and swing dance partner Chris, wore his kilt! He’s not Scottish, but he found in a thrift store years ago and thought it was cool!

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For the reception, we dipped various snacks into a chocolate fountain! I am so glad we got to include that and we knew someone who let us borrow it! There were also mini cheesecakes and cupcakes that my mom and her friends made.

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We fed each other Safeway cheesecake after our cake-maker fell through. it was still delicious! On the wall behind us are pictures of us throughout our relationship. Along the wall were also pictures of each of us as we grew up, provided by our parents and hung up by the all of the wonderful people who showed up to help set up the day before.

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After snacks were eaten and toasts were made, I changed into a shorter dress so I wouldn’t have to bother pinning up my small train to dance. My dad and I danced to “Oh Good Grief” by Vince Guaraldi.

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Kurt and his mom danced to “Over the Rainbow” by Israel Kamakawiwoʻole.

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Finally, Kurt and I danced to “L.O.V.E” by Nat King Cole. The table full of our Pun Manor friends (Pun Manor being our house at the time) began singing along, and I called out to the room, “Everybody!” and nearly half the room joined in. It was beautiful. Kurt, because of a head injury when he was 3, has a hard time learning anything that involves muscle memory, so he had never learned to dance. We swayed around, just having fun and being silly. It had to be have been obvious that we didn’t practice, but it was still perfect.

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And then everybody danced! All of our college friends, wedding party, and younger cousins got up and joined us for songs that I can’t even remember anymore. I just know it was tons of fun. I’m so glad that so many people danced. I was afraid people wouldn’t! We danced until Kurt decided that we needed to be heading to our hotel for the honeymoon, at about 5:30. It went by so fast! I thanked everyone for coming and making our day so amazing, grabbed some gifts to open on the way, and we headed out. We then spent 2 nights at The Edgewater, a very fancy waterfront hotel in Seattle. It was awesome. I’m so glad everything happened the way it did. It was perfect.

Foodie Friday: Happy Hour at Wilde Rover

Since moving to the wetter side of the state, my favorite place to eat out is Wilde Rover, an Irish pub in downtown Kirkland. Live music almost every night, great employees, and delicious food and drinks. Today, I deposited my most recent paycheck from my nannying job, and decided to treat myself. I hadn’t had time to cook anything great this week (there’s also nothing in my fridge), so I went to a place where I knew I’d find content for a solid post. Lucky for me, happy hour had just started!

Happy hour at Wilde Rover means 33 and a 1/3 percent off of all wine, draft beers, and well drinks. I have wine at home, so I got a vodka-cran. Can’t go wrong with simplicity. Bartender delivered my drink very quickly, and it was well mixed. Bravo.

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Happy hour also means lower prices for most appetizers. I have a small appetite, so an appetizer is lunch for me. I hate ending up with leftovers, because they’re never as good when reheated later. Except for Wilde Rover’s fries. They are amazing. I went with familiarity and got the pulled pork sliders.

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Soooooo good. Kurt won’t eat them because they have coleslaw on top, and while I used to shy away from coleslaw too, I find it gives the sliders the perfect balance of fresh veggie crunch and hot, melt-in-your-mouth, saucy meat. Delish! The bill came out to 11.48 after the tip. Not bad! 🙂

I love the atmosphere there. It’s super classy, without feeling stuffy or high-end. I feel like it’s a place where anyone can feel comfortable, no matter what walk of life or country you come from. Here are some more pictures of the interior:

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What’s your favorite restaurant in your town?

Foodie Friday post will be up later today, after I go to town and hand in my resignation letter at Gymboree! Woo!

Thrifting Thursday: Fashion Jackets

There are jackets for chilly days, like the Love Pink hoodie I got for free from an old roommate and the raincoat and peacoat my mother-in-law bought me, but for slightly crisp yet sunny days, I like to bring out the fashion jackets. They aren’t the warmest things in my closet, but they are definitely the coolest. I get comments on these nearly every time I wear them, at least when I see people I know, and I got all of them at thrift stores! 

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Empyre. Estimated $60 new. Found for $5 at Goodwill in Ellensburg, Washington. Probably.

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XXI. Estimated $20 new. Found for $5 at Goodwill in Ellensburg.

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Last Kiss. Estimated $40 new. Found for $8 at Arizona Trading Company in Kansas City, Missouri.

 

How do you feel about the military-inspired look? I love it!

 

 

 

 

Webster’s Wednesday (on Thursday, oops!): Communication

I know, it’s a word that everyone knows, but is it a concept that everyone understands and uses well? Not really. I had (and still do) intend to write about words that aren’t commonly used in everyday speech, so people can learn something new. But “communication” has been on my mind a lot recently, so here we go.

Communication

: the act or process of using words, sounds, signs, or behaviors to express or exchange information or to express your ideas, thoughts, feelings, etc., to someone else

: a message that is given to someone : a letter, telephone call, etc.

First known use: 14th century.

I don’t know how it came up, but the other day, Addison (the girl I nanny) interrupted my reading of “The Three Little Wolves and the Big Bad Pig” (not a typo) to ask what “communicate” meant. 

“It means talk to someone… or just let them know how you feel, in anyway you can, even if you can’t use words.”

She just stared at me. I wanted to make sure she understood that it wasn’t the same thing as just “talking” and that it was more general and overarching, but how do you explain that to a 4-year-old?

“Like… if you had a friend who couldn’t hear you, how would you tell him you want to be friends?”

“I’d get closer.” But, of course.

“What if no matter how close you got, he couldn’t hear you?”

Blank stare.

“There are other ways to let someone know you want to be their friend that don’t use words. Can you think of anything?”

“A hug! Or a kiss!”

“Yeah! Or just a smile and a wave! Those are all different ways to communicate. Does that make sense?”

“Mmmm… no.” Well, maybe next time. She did, after all, only just learn how to identify a “pneumatic drill” after seeing it in the aforementioned story book 30 times. She was so proud of herself.

But back to “communication.” The other reason it’s been on my mind is that COMMUNICATION IS SO VITAL FOR A HEALTHY MARRIAGE. My word. For that matter, it’s incredibly vital to any relationship at all. Why do humans have such a hard time grasping the fact that, without communication, every relationship we have will continue to be needlessly difficult? Ladies, no one can read your mind, even someone to whom you’ve been married for 10+ years. Men, the same goes for you. The exact same. Please, everyone, no matter what stage of life you are experiencing, talk to the people in your life. Talk about your feelings. Tell people when they do something that bothers you. Well, if it would do any good. There’s a reason I don’t send a private message to a certain person every time I see her pointlessly attack someone on Facebook. I know she’s wrong and it infuriates me, but saying something to her would only result in my fearing for my life. Which is why she’s blocked now. But in all other situations, communication is the best! Face your fears and talk to people about issues that need to be resolves, because, trust me, it’s so much better than keeping it all in, because that never solved anything. If you trust someone, you’ll let them in. If you don’t let them in, they’ll think you don’t trust them, and why should they trust someone who doesn’t trust them? And without mutual trust, you can’t really have a meaningful relationship, can you?

Can you think of a time when communication solved a problem for you?

Newsday Tuesday: Some Good News

Last night, I tried to find some interesting news online. Nothing stuck out to me until I discovered The Good News Network, a website dedicated to positive, feel-good stories instead of the depressing news that is sensationalized so much. The first headline that caught my eye was, “Ellen Show Gives Waitress Big Reward For Picking Up Military Members’ Tab.” I intended to write about that last night, but got caught up with my career coach homework, and just wanted to go to bed. I figured I’d write it while Addison, the 4-year-old I nanny was taking her nap. That didn’t happen either. On the bus, I read the Kirkland Reporter, which had some positive stories, but mostly depressing. Rapists, murderers, home invasions. I scoured the paper for a good story by kept coming back to the waitress story. So now I am home and it is time.

Sarah Hoidhal, a waitress at Ruby Tuesday in Concord Massachusetts, knows what it’s like to struggle financially. She is 22 years old, caring for a 15-month-old son, living with her mother, and surviving on tips from the restaurant. She works hard to provide for her son the best that she can. So when two female National Guard service members came into the restaurant for lunch and mentioned that they were trying not to spend much until their pay was no longer frozen (they had been furloughed as a result of the government shutdown), Sarah felt generous. She only brought home $8 in tips that day, but she still feels confident that she did the right thing: Paying the service members’ tab. When they asked for the check, instead, she brought them a note that said, “Thanks to the government shutdown, people like you, who protect this country, are not getting paid; however, I still am. Lunch is on me. Thank you for serving, ladies! Have a good day!”

The two women were blown away! In their gratitude and amazement, they posted a picture of the note on Facebook, where Sarah recieved praise from hundreds of strangers. Not long after, Ellen Degeneres’ producers caught wind of Sarah’s good deed and flew her out to L.A. to be on her show. They talked about the details of the ordeal, the audience cheered, and Ellen paid her back the exact amount of the check, $27.75. Sarah laughed and thanked her several times while the audience applauded and cheered, but as Ellen will do, she had to make it bigger. Watch this video to see what else she does!

This story warmed my heart, and I hope it warms yours too. It’s good to be reminded of the good that happens in the world, even if it’s little things that only affect a few people.

 

What’s some good news you heard this week?