Monday, January 25, 2010
We named them Forrest and Jenny, and they lived happily together for about 12 hours before Jenny decided it was time to go. She went belly up and I was afraid that Forrest would go, too, but he's still well and kicking. If only they had produced intelligent offspring with a chili-bowl haircut and a cute scratchy voice. Then I'd feel better about it.
I gave Jenny a burial worthy of a $2.14 fish. I went home on my lunch break and dumped out almost all of the water, including her, into the grass at the base of our patio fence. Forrest looked on. I filled his bowl back up with water that we started distilling yesterday, making sure to let it make plenty of bubbles so he'd have lots of air. I'm kind of sad I ever wanted fish. What a ridiculous pet )c:
While Ryan was finishing up my Mac (which now works, in case you didn't know) (!!!happy!!!), I made a collage to hang over our couch. Some people will probably think it's artsy, because it certainly looks that way. But I guess only the artist can know if it's good or not. I've never done a collage before, so I don't really consider it a work of art, just a way to display all of the things we can't throw away but would hide in a box for years and years. I don't know if there are rules for what makes a good collage. We joked that one day we probably will throw it away. For now, I like it.
So I've been reading this book that Wes got me for Christmas. It's interesting so far. I'm kind of afraid it's going to get scary, but it's not there yet so naturally I read a little more and a little more. It brought up one thing that I had never heard of or thought about before. People define art in different ways, but in the book, the main famous artist-guy says that what makes a painting good is if it resonates with familiarity, but also stirs up mystery. It makes sense - if you were just going to paint something exactly the way it looks [if you could... I guess that's a challenge in itself for all of us] then you might as well take a picture. But when you paint something, you have the freedom to make some things vague or add in your own perspective, etc. It explains why people [including myself] always try to read between the lines when it comes to art. They want to learn something they didn't know.
But then there are other reasons for art completely... such as just being enjoyable to look at (c:
Thursday, January 21, 2010
It's just a fact of life, you can't always be up. We can learn a lot from black and white. They are as different as anything can get, except you wouldn't know one without knowledge of the other. Or apples. What's a really good apple taste like? I'd have no idea if I didn't bite into grainy, bitter one every once in a while [red delicious, i'm looking at you]. So really, we can't judge anything if we don't have something to compare it to.
I guess that is the problem with dating. Many people date and start to get the idea that they've found the one they want. Anyone I've ever dated I thought I would end up with. I didn't know you could really know without a doubt until I really knew. Once I had gained that knowledge, I realized how little I knew before. Of course, then it was too late. Now when I get the opportunity to talk to dating girls, I wish desperately that they would listen. If you have to ask, then you don't know. And if you know, then you know. Everyone wants to think they are the exception to the rule. But it's a rule I'll stick by for a reason. Don't make it so complicated!
Tonight Jac and Christine, and hopefully Rachel are going to come over for a bit and play Mario Cart and Wave Race. Hubbs has class til 9 so they are kind enough to keep me company! I'll probably be on campus a lot more this semester because I won't like being home alone, but something tells me that the hand full of hours to myself each week should be used for something. It's terrible for Ryan, but somehow I just don't feel motivated to do the things he hates to do when he's not there... :P But really I am lost as to what to do with myself. I feel like I have no purpose. And no offense to my friends, but most of the time I don't feel like being with anyone if I can't be with him. How pathetic does that sound? I gotta work on that...
Well I do have one small thing that helps me through my day to day. I got new shampoo and conditioner, decided to spend a little more on some quality stuff, and my hair has felt really nice all week. It's Redken All-Soft. The description said it was for brittle, dry hair, which was the case with me. I guess it's the cold weather that made my hair really dry. Plus, I don't always condition it because it weighs it down and gets oily-looking by the end of the day. This product is just what I was looking for. My hair is really soft and shiny, but not weighed down. Also much easier to manage.
I try not to sound like a commercial... sorry. I really like it though. Ulta was having a sale on them... and yeah they cost more than the Equate knockoffs I get at walmart for $0.99 a bottle. A 33 ounce bottle will run you about $14. I figure I've done my time though. As an RA, you get a lot of free shampoo at the end of each semester. No one wants to pack it, so they leave it to the RA (c: I don't think I've had to buy shampoo or conditioner for at least a year. And that bottle will last me like 6 months! Ohh yeah it also smells distinctly like butter and honey...mmmm sopapillas!
Tomorrow I get to have lunch with Whitney. I'm really honored that I get to see her so soon, makes me feel like VIP (c:
Tuesday, January 19, 2010
A Simple Measure
So that's for you, the next time you rearrange. I won't be needing it any time soon.
I am looking for websites with elements that would be good for ABC's new website. I have been working on designs myself, but as much as I try to follow my boss' instructions, I can't seem to hit it with him. It actually seems like it's getting worse. Anyway, here is my latest version. I would really love to go with a more Texas home-town theme, but he's all about the clean and shiny. So we have vast differences in taste, which makes it really hard for me to catch his vision. It's a good thing I don't do graphic design for a living...mostly. We're trying to give the designers we have hired some idea of what we're looking for though, and I still think a crappy rendition of we want is better than telling them that we like all of this random stuff from other sites.
So here is the latest.
I am reluctant to throw a bunch of promotions and rotating flash images in the center there, although I have thought about it a lot and I just don't know what else to do. I think it has to be done really carefully... I don't want it to be another one of those crummy cluttered sites and thankfully my boss agrees, but he still thinks we should have them on there. There's got to be a stylish way to do it. I'll be working on that.
For now, I am heading to Luby's for a Chamber Ambassador's meeting. I haven't been to Luby's in over a decade for good reason. Makes me feel a little sick thinking about my last experience.
Sorry for glumness. Today hasn't been the greatest and there's not a lot of chance it will resolve itself soon. Anyway, hope it does and hope you have a good day.
Thursday, January 14, 2010
It's easier to see why some married people grow more and more alike. Now why some start to look alike, I'll never know :)
Or maybe I will. This is interesting...
Why do old couples look alike?
Image courtesy Morgue File
Among the raft of books, articles, jokes, romantic comedies, self-help guides and other writings discussing marriage, some familiar ideas often crop up. Few appear more often than the idea that many old couples look alike. You've probably seen it before -- two elderly people walking hand in hand down the street or sitting at a café, resembling each other so strongly that they could be siblings. Do these couples actually look alike, and if so, what's caused them to develop this way?
A study published in the March 2006 issue of "Personality and Individual Differences" may have the answer. Twenty-two people, divided equally between male and female, participated in the study. They were asked to judge the looks, personalities and ages of 160 married couples. The participants viewed photographs of men and women separately and were not told who was married to whom. The subjects consistently judged people who were married as being similar in appearance and personality. The researchers also found that couples who had been together longer appeared more similar.
This in itself may not seem surprising, but the study also offered some answers on why couples may look alike. To start, consider that life experiences can end up being reflected physically. Someone who is happy and smiles more will develop the facial muscles and wrinkles related to smiling. The years of experience of an old couple's marriage, happy or otherwise, would then be reflected in their faces.
Genetic influences are also a factor. A past study showed that genetically similar people have better marriages [Source: Live Science]. Such families have fewer incidents of child abuse and a lower rate of miscarriages. People also appear to be more selfless when involved with genetically similar partners.
In another study, a researcher at the University of Western Ontario determined that when considering friends or romantic partners, a similar genetic profile made up about a third of the selection criteria. We may think subconsciously that people who are genetically similar work better together. Consequently, we look for physical or emotional cues that tell us that this potential friend, husband or wife is genetically similar to us. Of course, couples shouldn't be too genetically similar -- in most cultures, relationships between close relatives are taboo, and geneticists agree that diversity is important to a healthy gene pool.
Besides feeling that they work better together, why and how do people choose partners who are genetically similar? Asking for a DNA sample on the first date would be impolite. The answer may be equal parts personality -- derived in part from genetics and consistently ranked by people as important in a partner -- and the marriage models we have around us. In other words, many women say they want a guy like dad.
Ryan is predominately Irish with some Cherokee and German thrown in. I am predominately German and Cherokee with some English/Irish thrown in. Maybe we came together by our ancestor's common bond of beer?
Hubbs started the daunting task of taking my iMac apart last night. For some reason, I've always felt like opening that thing up was a big no no. Like it's Pandora's Box. Well, he might think it's Pandora's Box at this point. He went through phases of extreme frustration and extreme relief as he tackled its dissassemblage ever so gently. I think he senses the deep attachment I have to it and is really not glad that I am so confident in him. What he may not realize is yes, I have given him a very great responsibility. That machine is the closest thing to a child to me. But, if he brings it out of its coma, oh the benefits and praises he will reap for many years to come! If not... well, I am daily preparing myself for that, just in case...
[just kidding honey, I'll still be proud of you and thankful that you tried like a good doctor. It will have led a long and portable life. And we'll have a huge paperweight.]
Wednesday, January 13, 2010
Among the long list of things I want to get done tonight, I hope we can get a good jump start [if not finish] installing the parts on my iMac. I'm a little anxious because we're afraid it's a more daunting task than we realized. According to Ryan, we have to take every piece apart and put it back together, and since there are some fragile pieces, we risk it not going back together at all. I don't know how much I'm willing to pay to get it working again. It's not a spring chicken anymore, but as far as I'm concerned, it still does a lot more than my HP laptop. Plus, it's an antique when it comes to Apple machines!
Oh, so, I've got some sad news. One of the best coffee shops in Longview went out of business this past week. Mugshots Coffee House is gone. It was a place even Ryan liked, and he's a coffee-snob! They were less expensive than Starbucks, so I don't think it was the price. And it was the favorite off-campus coffee shop for students, although I doubt Mugshots saw too many LeTU student dollars since most of them would get their coffee fixes at Common Grounds since it was already paid for. Why they went out of business is not obvious to me. I do want to know why, though. They had really good fruit smoothies! And I still have my punch card partially filled out. Bummer!
Well, today is going to fly by, I can just feel it. I have a lot of design projects on my work list for today, and when I get home, I've got a lot to do there. But I like it! And I am going to go to bed early tonight!!! Even with *counts* 18 things on my list. The week is downhill from here!
Cleaning Tarnished Silver
Start with plain soap and water. The first thing to do is to wash your silverware or silver jewelry with soap and water to remove any dust or oils from the surface. You'll be removing the tarnish by way of a mild chemical reaction, and want to wash away anything that might block the tarnish from reacting.
Prepare your equipment. The next step is to line a pan with aluminum foil and add enough water to completely cover the piece of silver you want to clean. I used a relatively small pan because I was cleaning jewelry, but this method works just as well for bigger pieces like platters or kettles, as long as you have a large pot that will hold enough water to entirely submerge the piece.
Stir baking soda into the water in the pan. A couple of tablespoons will suffice for small items in a small pan, but you may need as much as a cup or two for large items in a gallon or more of water. As the baking soda dissolves, turn on the burner underneath the pan and let the water come to a boil.
Add tarnished silver. As soon as the water starts to boil, you can remove the pan from the heat and submerge the silver in the hot water. Make sure the silver is in direct contact with the aluminum foil. The whole process can take several minutes, but it shouldn't be long before you start to see tiny yellow or black flakes in the water, or notice that the aluminum foil is turning black. What's happening is that the hot solution of baking soda and water is separating the sulfur from the silver and transferring it to the aluminum. This easy homemade tarnish remover takes advantage of the fact that sulfur is more chemically attracted to aluminum than silver.
Use tongs to move the silver pieces around in the pan. You can even take it out of the solution briefly to get a better look at your progress. Just be gentle and avoid scratching the silver. Once the silver is clean, you should rinse it in clean water to remove any traces of baking soda, then dry it with a soft clean cloth. You may find that you can take off even more tarnish by rubbing at any remaining dark spots with the cloth.