Thursday, September 27, 2012

In the midst of all the running around and little things that need to be taken care of, I'm so grateful for those few moments that sometimes occur at work when Bob and I stumble onto talking about arts and culture--because that's when I discover more and more of our similarities.

I didn't think today would afford one of those moments, and I'm not sure how it happened.  But in the middle of talking about one issue or another we suddenly found ourselves praising Mumford, commenting on the quiet brilliance of Gotye (no matter how overplayed), and agreeing that (while thoroughly enjoyable) Lewis is a bit too literal for us.  We prefer the layered ambiguity of TS Eliot or Bob Dylan.  He's got me beat having read Lord of the Rings 8 times (I'm working on it =) and he had front row tickets to a U2 concert in Hawaii a few years back.  "Adele absolutely deserved every accolade she received"--I agreed.  Both holding our breath for CBS's debut of Elementary tonight.  And he promised he was getting back to Sherlock this weekend--only "Hounds" and the "Fall" left.  "You've seen them a few times each probably..."  A few, Bob.  A few.

It was 8 minutes at the most... but the conversation made my day!

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Journeys through Middle Earth {Pt. 1}

So excited to begin what I hope will be a revelatory series--both to write and to read.  Here's my intro, originally written 9.11.12.

*   *   *

So this morning I finished a biography on Tolkien (hopefully just my first), and I am amazed.

I've been meaning to mention this for a while, but there seemed so much to say... so I think this may turn into a series of sorts.

But let me back up and explain a little...

Earlier this summer, I decided re-reading The Hobbit in light of the [HIGHLY ANTICIPATED!!!] trilogy that starts this Christmas (only 93 days =).  I had read it as a child, gosh, probably around age 9 or 10?  So I remembered very little - pretty much 13 dwarves, Bilbo Baggins, Gollum, riddles, ring, dragon.  It proved a very rich re-reading experience because I felt surprised by everything after he found the ring.  There is SO much more I want to say about the hobbit... but like I said, another post =)

My friends and I have decided that I have obsessive disorder--not obsessive "compulsive" disorder--just obsessive.  As my sister reminded me this weekend, I'm an "all on/all off" kind of gal... and if I'm "all off" its usually due to decided detestation or total ignorance.  And so after finishing The Hobbit (actually reading the last chapters aloud to my brother on our last road-trip... *sniff), I said, "Well, that was lovely.  But no need to throw myself (again) into Tolkien fever."  I read the trilogy at about 11 (before seeing the films) and had attempted re-reading since then, only to fade out in Book III of the Two Towers. I was pretty set, I have other things to read (and to do) and 1,500 pages of Middle-Earth just might distract from that, so The Hobbit was enough.  Ha. Ha.

So, imagine my surprise when The Fellowship of the Ring showed up in my bag the next day on my bus ride!  Now, I'm nearly done with Fellowship (more posts to come), warming up to the idea of attempting The Silmarillion, reading (multiple?) biographies on Tolkien, dreaming of how wonderful it would be to know Elvish, borrowing my brother-in-law's atlas of Middle-Earth, listening to the soundtracks non-stop, and really wishing he has a single, great-grandson around somewhere.  And crying.  Lots of Tolkien = lots of crying.  Between his personal life, the heroicism of hobbits, and my own "journey"--there has been several tears shed on the bus.

Ok... I've decided this will have to be the introductory post.  Thoughts have been bubbling inside me too long and I hope to share many of them here.  But for now, I just needed to explain the plight and the joy of being a nerd.

Monday, September 24, 2012

Well, my innagural "Technology Sabbath" was successful.  It felt good.  And I didn't miss any earth-shattering news.  It's just kind of eye-opening how much we use cell phones, the web, etc... and to think that none of those things were common when I was born. Hm.

But we're back to Monday (after a whirlwind weekend for me) and I thought I'd share a few Bob-isms I've been saving up for a while.  Some of these are funny but all of them make me grateful he's my boss.

"A lot of problems are products of success."

In the middle of a conversation about the company -
Bob:  Samara, have you seen Finding Nemo?
Me:  Yes...??
Bob:  I'm Dori.

"Ethics trumps money. Always."

Bob:  We need to come up with a password for you and I to use.
Me:  Ok.
Bob:  It could be anything, really. It could be your friend! [Referring to Mr. C =]
Me:  Ummm... Haha - no.

Friday, September 21, 2012

Today, 75 years ago, a slim children's book was unleashed on the world... and it changed everything!

[That may sound dramatic (from me? shocking!), but it really is true. More to come on that later]

Happy anniverssary to The Hobbit!

"In a hole in the ground there lived a hobbit." How marvelous!

I recently re-read The Hobbit [and am now in the midst of the Trilogy] and was blown away all over again. Stay tuned or be warned: I will shortly begin posting a series I've started on revelations from re-reading Tolkien =)

Thursday, September 20, 2012

Technology Sabbath - a girl who unplugs on Sundays

This would be hard... but I feel ready for it.
I remember reading Little House on the Praire and thinking how boring it must have been to sit around and do nothing on Sundays. Now, with a full-time job + a full-time social life, nothing sounds more relaxing. And while turning off the phone and computer wouldn't bring my entire life to a halt, it would give me silence and space to gather my thoughts, journal, read, and really listen. This ideas been growing on me all day and it may just happen. Stay tuned ;)
I hope you all had a lovely weekend!
[You can tell life is full when it's thursday and you're finally writing about the weekend =P ]

I was absolutely spoiled this weekend!
I got to attend 2 concerts and be with some of my favorite people =)

Friday night, I took my younger brother, Jerry, on a date.......... to see our favorite band:
Future of Forestry

This was my fourth FOF concert (first and second experience)--and each one has been so worth it.
Obviously I'm a huge fan of their art... but more than just a fan.
They are a group of extremely talented people who have a lot of fun creating together. And that is worth the price of admission.

This year was especially moving... beyond what I can articulate.
But one of the fun parts was that my brother and I were front and center. Eric (the lead singer) kept looking over at us. In between songs, he made a comment about how unusual it was to have people singing along who knew every word.
After the concert I stood in a group, waiting to talk to Eric. But I noticed that Jerry was behind me talking to another member of the band so I turned around to chat with them.
As I did, Eric leapt out of this crowd of people, looked at us and said "Don't leave! Wait just a minute and I'll be done." I laughed, assuring him we weren't going anywhere.
So we chatted with a cool band member who had also just graduated college and then waited a bit longer for Eric. We got to spend several minutes with him, sharing some of the personal significance to his songs, thanking him for his music. But it felt mutually encouraging. He was so grateful to us... just an amazing connection, really.

The next night was also a stellar music experience: my church recorded their first live album.
Our worship leader (also named Eric) has such an incredible as a singer/songwriter. Combine that with some very talented musicians, Katie + Rose (amazing!), an energized crowd, invite the presence of God and you can expect an incredible evening!

So there's a snapshot of my fabulous, musical weekend. Hope yours was equally inspiring!

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

So, the weekend was fabulous. And I just had to share a bit.

Started off Friday night celebrating the lovely Cami Morrill =)
For her birthday, we went to a lovely little French place called Le Pichet.
For the record... being able to sit and relish french cuisine for three hours (which is as it was meant to be eaten), to fellowship over good food with fun friends, that is refreshing. And I'm so grateful I got to spend that time with Cami & Co.

[The group, with the gorgeous birthday girl on the far left =]

Saturday was equally stellar!
What to do on one of the last summery days of the year? Satisfy one of your summer wishes!
After trying to find the perfect day schedule and weather-wise... on saturday I took Sarah paddle-boarding!

It's been a goal of mine for about a year and half... and it was so worth it!!
She and I went to a fabulous little place on South Lake Union. From there, we paddled ourselves across the lake to Gasworks. Weaving in and out of the paths of sail-boats, being serenaded by jazz music from the house-boats (I like to believe Tom Hanks lives in one ;), and marveling at all the fascinating names of boats--favorites being Starward and Daedalus--we glided atop the water and enjoyed Seattle Sun. 
I can't recommend the experience highly enough. I found stress seemed to melt out there on the water. And there were many priceless moments I won't soon forget. 
So loved getting this opportunity and now I'm just bummed I'll have to wait till next spring to do it again... but I'm already dreaming of the day when I can buy my own board and paddle =)

Hope you had a fabulous weekend and that the week has started well for you!
Bonsoir, mon amis.

Friday, September 7, 2012

Today I'm celebrating 1 month at my new job =)

It has been an incredible month!  I feel I am in that strange phase where I still feel very new, but at the same time, surely I've been here so much longer than a month.  But all of one month has flown by... and I am still so blessed.  This sounds cliche, but in all seriousness, not a day goes by when I don't say to myself, "I love my job."  [For fellow chick-flick cinephiles - not in the Emily Blunt Devil Wears Prada way, but the Kristen Bell When in Rome way =]

It's true though... More than enjoying that I have a full-time job [aka paycheck] or even happy to be with the company I work for [don't get me wrong, I'm grateful for both of those things]--I love my specific job.  My business cards [what the heck?!] arrived yesterday and all I could do was smile.

God is so faithful.  And He is mind-blowingly good.  And I am so, so grateful!!

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

So... sometimes, you have to just give up control completely.

After hopping on an alternate route to work (also known as taking the wrong bus), I found myself on a nearly broken down 244 =/  Being a schemer, my wheels were nearly spinning off as I tried to figure "this bus goes to the freeway, I could catch this bus, but it might be too late. I could get off and run to catch that route......."

As He does, God interrupted my thought process with a loving, "Chill out!"  Right.  The fact is, there's nothing I can do to make this bus work, and really nothing more I can do to get to work on time.  If I'm late, I'm late.  I work a little longer--no big.  Why did I get so wound up again??  Control is an illusion.  Let go... and breathe!

So rather than continue to freak out, I pulled out my book and delved back into the Mines of Moria and rejected the rising 244-tension.  Within minutes, we were at the freeway flier stop and I was transfering busses.  But, it left me just enough time to look to my right and catch a glimpse of Rainier. 

And we still arrived in Bellevue 10 minutes earlier than my regular bus. 

No control and no problems. 

"My rest is a weapon against the opression
of man's obsession to control things..."
- Josh Garrels, The Resistance

Wishing you all a peaceful and control-free day =)

Monday, September 3, 2012

Lately been enjoying...

Ben Galbraith:

Ok... secret. Since seeing the look work on Martin Freeman, I've warmed up to the idea that some guys can pull of a shirt buttoned to the top collar (especially with a sweater over it). Mr. Galbraith here solidified that for me. I'm a fan.

Sunday, September 2, 2012

Ok... you can just say it.  I am a nerd.

I'm applying for graduate school funding, studying for my GRE's... and now looking at free college courses online.


[Seriously though, I'm freaking out about these courses. They are all from top Uni's (Oxford, Yale, Berkley, etc.) and you can take them at your own pace. I think I may just continue my education this year after all =]
You remember those amazing lit-inspired posters?  Well, I recently found some of the artist's back-story to making them, and it made me love them even more, so without further adieu... his words [and a few of mine] -

You are what you underline [LOVE that!]
The best thing about paperbacks (apart from the smell, of course) is that when a little jewel of a sentence grabs you, you can underline it. If you’ve only ever read a book on a screen (hey, it’s not far off), then let me explain: Underlining something in your book is the original “interactive” media. Think of it as a hyperlink that redirects to your own thoughts [so true!], and like a hyperlink, it can leave the rest of the story behind and open up a new window of ideas, insights, musings. 
That’s the spirit of this series of illustrations. I took little snippets of text and ideas from some of my favorite authors (with some notable exceptions that I’m saving), and let the words be a springboard for an illustration. The illustrations incorporate and interact with the text and hopefully add up to something that engages the mind as much as the eye. 
The plan is to complete around 50 illustrations in a year. I’ve posted some of them below.  There are 23 completed [now 24, see below ;], which you can see in my Etsy shop, Obvious State
I’d love to hear what you think. 
- Evan
[How cool is that?]

 Well, I'm hooked... can't wait to see the next one he creates =)