Monday, November 30, 2009

NaNoWriMo Victory!!!

Believe it or not, my main character's name is not Henry. Her name is Charlotte, but as the novel is in written in first person, her name does not appear as much as his. Kellyn is the villian. I am glad the word "hair" is prominent, as my story is a Rapunzel retelling.
I cannot believe it, but I am a 2009 NaNoWriMo winner! I even managed a whopping 7 words over the 50,000. Let me tell you, those last nearly 2,000 words were definitely the hardest! It's so much harder to write when your story is finished and you're only adding extra words that you know you'll probably cut out later.

I was so desperate that I almost resorted to adding some sort of "About the Author" segment at the end. Instead, I inserted extremely long and goofy chapter titles, and extended one scene, as well as adding an extra sentence here or there.
I am so relieved that this month is finished, though. Now I can focus on the things I've been wanting and needing to do.
Maybe a real blog post will come tomorrow! But now I am just relieved that this thing is over and I can say that I wrote a novel. =)
Until next time,
Kristin (missvintagegirl)
Above picture courtesy of Wordle.

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Obessive word counting...

Okay, so I just have a tiny, quick minute to blog. I have been working like a maniac over the past few days on NaNoWriMo. And I'm actually going to finish it, I do believe! I am just about finished with my novel (writing the Epilogue now), but I am still just under 2,000 words short. But that's okay...I can go back and add some silly stuff that I can take out later. I could just sit here and look at my little progress graph, because it is crazy over the past few days. I wrote 7,000 words yesterday and just over 8,000 today. That is definitely a record.

Now I am off to try and get as far as possible before I have to go to bed! I have a tag to do and some other stuff to blog about, but maybe tomorrow!

Until next time,
Kristin (missvintagegirl)

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving!

I am thankful for:

-God and His love, forgiveness, and second chances.
-My awesome, hilarious family.
-My cousins' adorable kids, Jackson and Maya.
-A warm bed.
-Books and the beautiful stories in them.
-Old movies, especially musicals.
-My sewing machine and love of sewing.
-The chance to attend community college.
-Jack the cat.
-My Beetle Bug.
-My memories of my grandparents.
-Pumpkin candles.
-Apple pie.
-Sunrises and sunsets.
-My piano.
-Smiles and laughs.
-Fabric stores.
-A sky full of stars.
-Old records.
-Great blogs, but more importantly, bloggers!

And many, many more things.

Happy Thanksgiving, everyone!

Until next time,
Kristin (missvintagegirl)

Wednesday, November 25, 2009

Thanksgiving Eve...

I am very excited about Thanksgiving. =) I actually got the tiniest bit involved in food preparations today...I grated carrots for a carrot cake until my fingernails turned orange. Once upon a time, a few years ago when I was taking a home ec class (ha...don't ask me about the macaroni and cheese I made), I actually made this carrot cake all by myself. And it was good. This time, I only grated the carrots and mixed up the frosting. I confess, the main reason I volunteered to mix the frosting was because that meant I got to lick (er...clean off) the mixer spinning things (what are they called?) and the spoon and bowl after it was finished...cream cheese frosting. Wow. I was very close to doing the happy dance my little cousin does when she gets something good to eat.

So tomorrow, my grandparents (my mom's parents) will get here a few hours before lunch, along with my great-uncle (my grandpa's brother). My brother's girlfriend might be coming also, but I'm not sure yet. Mom and Nanny will flutter around in the kitchen. Dad will be in and out, doing different things. Pa will sit in our big chair in front of the window, trying to convince Jack (the fat cat) to get off the window sill and sit on his lap. My bachelor great-uncle will sit on the couch and tell us a lot of interesting news and random trivia. We'll eat a huge lunch with too many desert choices and second helpings. Then we'll all drift to the living room, and after a while, Mom or Dad might ask me to play something on the piano. So I'll play some Christmas songs, while Pa whistles along and everyone else talks. It will be a lovely day.

Tomorrow I'm planning on posting a list of all the things I'm thankful for. I hope everyone has a wonderful Thanksgiving!

Until next time,
Kristin (missvintagegirl)

Complete disappointment...

Donny Osmond, winner of "Dancing With the Stars"? Seriously? The 70's teen star whose face looks exactly the same now as it did then? What is this world coming to??

I'll never watch it again.

Okay, so that's what I say every time someone I don't like wins "DWTS" or "Survivor," or when another one of my favorite characters gets killed off of "Lost." I never follow through with it.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Summer Stock!

Three posts in one day? This is getting a little out of hand. I just had to post about "Summer Stock." What a lovely movie! It was really great. Gene Kelly and Judy Garland make about one of the most perfect singing/dancing movie couples ever. Gene Kelly is amazing beyond words. What did I ever do before I discovered musicals?

Probably the best surprise was the Judy's "Friendly Star" song. I had seen that clip on one of the "That's Entertainment!" shows and loved it...Judy singing to herself on the porch, not knowing that Gene is sitting in a rocking chair listening to her. Then they talk for a moment (I don't want to give it away!), and she gets tears in her eyes, real tears. I loved that scene. This movie supposedly almost never got made, because of the issues in Judy Garland's personal life at the time. I find it incredibly ironic (in a sad way, not a funny way) that some of the most talented people of all time had so many struggles. They either led rough, questionable personal lives or died tragically, or both. Judy Garland, Frank Sinatra, Elvis, James's so sad. You watch their movies, hear their voices, and you wonder how they could have struggled so much. But then again, it proves the whole point that no matter what you have-talent, fame, wealth-it doesn't amount to anything if you don't have God.

When I hear of a star who lived a good, moral, long life, it makes me happy. Jimmy Stewart, Bob Hope, Irving Berlin (songwriter who wrote "White Christmas," among many others), Gene Kelly. People who weren't married 6 or 7 times, who didn't have an affair with their leading lady in each movie, who didn't drink and smoke heavily.

I didn't mean for this post to be depressing! "Summer Stock" put me in a really great mood, as good musicals always do. So maybe I can leave things positive with this:

Now it's back to "Dancing With the Stars." It's the season finale! If Mya and Dmitri don't win, you will probably hear my television crash through the window.

Until next time,
Kristin (missvintagegirl)

Purchased wallets and sentence fragments...

School is out for Thanksgiving break (and guess what a month from today is? Yay!)! I am so relieved. To celebrate, I'm getting ready to watch "Summer Stock," staring Gene Kelly and Judy Garland, in my pajamas while I eat a chicken salad sandwich and a lot of chocolate. I know it's not a Christmas movie, and I should be focusing all my attentions on Christmas movies right now, but this movie came in the mail today and I'm so excited about seeing a Gene Kelly movie that I've never seen before!

In other news, I saw this in Target the other day. "You make wallets," I reminded myself. "It would be wrong to buy one." Then myself argued back, "But you don't make owl wallets! And look at how cute he is! You can't make a wallet with a metal frame." That side of me won, and I ended up buying this adorable wallet.

It is pretty small, but that means less bulky stuff to shift through in my huge pocketbook. Speaking of my huge pocketbook, I don't think that I ever posted any pictures of it! I must do that.

A few NaNoWriMo thoughts: I refuse to use contractions in my story, because for every "it's" I use, that could be two words instead of one. I think I have one in my whole story, and that's because it sounded completely awkward any other way I tried to put it. I am used to doing that now that I was typing something completely different a minute ago and found myself erasing "haven't" and writing "have not." Good grief. And you know what bugs me to death? That little green grammar squiggly line that pops up under stuff when I'm typing. I cannot keep typing with that green line staring at me, so I always hit the "check spelling and grammar." You know what it says 9 times out of 10? "Sentence fragment (consider revising.)" Seriously? People talk in fragments all the time, and so do my characters. I bet I have hit that "Ignore once" button a million times. I know I could change it not to do that, but on certain things (like English papers), I want it to show me grammar issues. I could stop being obsessive and just let the little green squiggle stay there, but I'm not that strong.

Until next time,
Kristin (missvintagegirl)

25,000 words!

Halfway through with NaNoWriMo! Yes! =) I honestly never thought I would get this far. And even though I am exactly 15,000 words behind right now and nine days behind, I am very optimistic. I have two classes today, and then I'm out for school until next Monday. Surely I can catch up over this Thanksgiving week. I like where my story is at right now, and it's pretty fun to write at this point, even though I'm still not sure how I'm going to work out the ending. But that's okay. Because I'm halfway finished with my novel! Woohoo!

I might make a real post later on today, but I'm not sure yet. I might be putting the finishing touches on my novel (note the sarcasm, please). I just had to post about this milestone. =)

Until next time,
Kristin (missvintagegirl)

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Christmas trees and dancing boys...

Nobody can say that Elvis isn't festive.

This is how my life-size cardboard standup gets in the Christmas spirit every year.
The majority of this post is going to be dedicated to my Christmas tree. Obsessive? Maybe. At least I'm not a Grinch (*cough*like my brother*cough*). This is my tiny tree, not the one my post is dedicated to. This little tree stays up year-round in my room and showcases my Elvis ornaments.
When I took the ornaments off this year to put them on my big tree this past Thursday, they were so dusty that Elvis had grey hair. And, as we all know, Elvis never, ever had grey hair. It was practically illegal. I took that as a hint (along with the fact that I could write my Christmas greetings in the dust on my furniture) that it was time to dust my room. I did so after I decorated the tree, and my bookcases thanked me.

The tree that this post is dedicated to is a vintage 1960's (somewhere around there) aluminum tree that I got at an estate yard sale after my great-uncle and great-aunt died. It was about $5, and online they are ridiculously expensive, so it was quite a thrifty buy. Okay, so it's not the prettiest tree ever, not the most logical fad that ever hit America. But that's okay. It's very unique. It actually reminds me of something from Whoville. And putting it up is a long process. It's basically a wooden pole with holes drilled in it, and you have to put all the shiny branches on it. Each branch is in a little individual brown paper wrapper. It's sort of cute. Even if the branches occasionally shed little pieces of silver on the floor, and I have to crawl around and find them before my fat cat tries to eat them.

Here is what it looks like when it's finished. Not so pretty, I know. And the fact that it's cramped in a corner doesn't help things. But hold gets better! I promise.

It comes with a little color wheel. It's a plastic wheel that attaches to a little spinning thing with a light bulb that shines through it. This is what you're supposed to use, instead of lights. It actually looks really pretty in these pictures, but in reality it doesn't light up the whole tree, only the bottom of it. Which makes it look like someone spray-painted the bottom and left the top. So I like to put two strings of lights on it. Here's with the color wheel:

Notice the big flower things on the ends of the branches? They remind me of Dr. Seuss's Whos for some reason. It's very whimsical.

So I put two strands of blue lights on it, which is not easy. Because the branches fall out when you try to wrap the lights around. Anyway, the blue lights and blue ornaments, plus all of my Elvis ornaments and a few of my other favorites. Tradition alert: Every year since I was born, my mom has bought me (and my brother) a Christmas ornament (occasionally more than one, but usually one). So I have a whole box of ornaments that I put on our real tree in the living room. There's everything from a "Baby's First Christmas" carriage, to Eeyore, to Harry Potter, to handmade ones with glitter and my school picture on them. This is the beautiful ornament I picked out this year, to reflect my newfound love of sewing.

I believe this one was last year's, or either one Mom actually gave to me for Christmas (I get ornaments very often as gifts, especially from my piano teacher, who started the Elvis obessesion). It is so obnoxious, but I love it. The headlight lights up, and it plays "Santa Claus Is Back in Town." Speaking of obnoxious, just wait until I post a picture of my Elvis stocking. It is the tackiest, coolest stocking ever. I'll give you a hint: think white jumpsuit pants, blinking lights, and a song.

My family went to Disney World for the first time over Thanksgiving week in 2006 (we went again for my senior trip this past January). Everything was beautiful, already decorated for Christmas. This was my ornament for that year. You can't really tell it, but the little hanger has mistletoe hanging above them.

So here is the finished tree. I just love it! In reality, it's not this bright of a blue. The silver sort of gives it a strange teal glow. Sort of like the glowing glass of milk in "Suspicion."

Last Thursday evening, me and Mom went to a musical program at the local university called "A Mini Salute to Broadway." I had to go to something for a fine arts experience and write a two page paper about it, so that's what we chose. We were planning on going to hear the Army Field Band and Soldier's Chorus, but then we saw this in the paper, so we sort of ditched that. I feel slightly guilty, like I let down the army or something. Anyway, the program was a lot of fun, but my favorite part were the songs from classic musicals, like "The Sound of Music" and "Fiddler on the Roof." I love musicals.

Last night I was in the mood for a Gene Kelly musical. So, partially to please and support the US armed forces, and partially because I hadn't seen it in quite a while, I watched "Anchors Aweigh." It's such an adorable movie, with great songs and great dancing. I sort of have a thing for Navy guys, especially if the guys are Gene Kelly and Frank Sinatra. Plus, my grandfather was in the Navy and a Pearl Harbor survivor. But I don't want to talk too much about that now, because I'm planning a special post about that on December 7th. And I'm hopefully going to include lots of lovely pictures of my grandpa in his handsome Navy uniform in Hawaii and at home.

I only have school tomorrow and Tuesday, and I'm super excited. I have a lot to do, though, homework and presentation stuff. Plus, I'm hopefully going to catch up on my NaNoWriMo novel. I go through spells. One week, I go days without writing and nearly give up. Then suddenly, I get motivated and go write several thousand words, which is what happened this weekend. I'm nearly halfway through now, which is so nice, even if I am a week behind. I'm hoping to catch up this week and cross that finish line!

Finally, I have a slight disclaimer of sorts. Just to avoid any confusion about my last post, I wanted to say that I did not make those owls in the picture. I'm planning on trying to make some, but I highly doubt they will turn out that cute, and I did not make those particular ones. I found them on Etsy and don't want to take any credit. But aren't they adorable?

Until next time,
Kristin (missvintagegirl)

A post coming...

I had really meant to blog before now! There's been so much going on, and I've been working on homework (and trolling Etsy) most of the weekend, including a bulletin board for the child care center and my child PSY presentation. So, in other words, I've been playing with scissors, construction paper, and markers, and looking up information about children's TV shows. How ironic that I'm in the real, grown-up world of college now. =)

I'm planning a real post this afternoon, with pictures of my vintage aluminum tree that I decorated Friday morning in a fit of Christmas spirit. But for now, I leave you with this...

I am in love! How adorable!! I've always had a strange fascination with owls, real ones, that is. They're so beautiful and elegant, but they are real predators (trust me, we've had them take out several laying's not pretty). Here lately, I have fallen in love with many crafted owls, and I found these yesterday. I drew them out, because they're expensive, but I would love to make a few. I've been discovering the amazing things you can make from felt. And it doesn't fray! I should make everything out of felt.

If I don't leave now, this will turn into a full-fledged post, and I want to work on my novel a little before church.

Until next time,
Kristin (missvintagegirl)

Thursday, November 19, 2009

Currier and Ives...

I just love the holiday season. There's something so wonderful and (for a lack of better word) magical about it. I was listening to the Christmas radio station the other day, and "Sleigh Ride" came on. You know, the last bit says:

"There's a happy feeling nothing in the world can buy,
When they pass around the coffee and the pumpkin pie.
It'll nearly be like a picture print of Currier and Ives.
These wonderful things are the things we remember all through our lives..."

What exactly is a picture print of Currier and Ives? I've always wondered, so I did a little research. Here's one:
It is lovely, isn't it? And the part that says, "These wonderful things are the things we remember all through our lives" is so true. It amazes me how my memories of Thanksgiving and Christmas are stuck so permanently in my mind. I love traditions (maybe a little too much). I'll probably be writing about our family holiday traditions some over the next month, along with my favorite Christmas music and movies. I would now, but I don't want to rush things along too much (says the girl who put up her Christmas tree on the first day of November).

I've recently had a few new people visiting my blog and commenting, and that made me so excited! I love to blog, and it makes it that much better to know that others are reading my blog and enjoying it. =)

Until next time,
Kristin (missvintagegirl)

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Fat cats and glue sticks...

I'm going to go a little crazy with the pictures now, so don't lose me, okay? I've got a lot to catch up on. So Jack has decided that he likes to sleep in the kitchen chairs. Well, not all of the kitchen chairs, just Mom's. It looks so uncomfortable, but it makes a good joke. When you go to jerk the chair out from under the table and plop down in it, it won't budge. Because this dude weighs almost 20 pounds.

Yesterday I raided Hobby Lobby for supplies for my sewing inspiration book (for lack of a more witty name). I worked on it yesterday afternoon, and I just love the way it came out! It's hard to believe that this adorable little book is nothing but recycled cardboard (from my sewing machine box, ironically), vintage-style scrapbook paper, colored cardstock torn in half, and binder rings. I used an Elmer's extra strength craft glue stick to glue the scrapbook paper over the cardboard, folding in the corners like I was wrapping a gift. Then I cut out small coordinating pieces to glue over the ugly part on the inside covers. Punch holes for the binder rings, add paper, and that's pretty much it. It was really easy and fun. It was partly inspired from Emily's book and by some Etsy journals.

The front cover. The little vintage fashion thing is a little charm we found in the clearance bin at Joann's over the summer. I sort of wanted to make a key chain out of it, but this is where it stays for now.
I got a tiny alphabet rubber stamp set that I love! It looks like an antique typewriter. I had the wrong sized brads to hold the little frame on, but I was too impatient to wait until the next day to go by Hobby Lobby again. So I sewed it on. Sewed through cardboard? Yes, it bent my needle, and it might not hold forever. But it's fine for now.

The inside front cover. This shows how I folded down the corners and glued them, and then covered it with other paper.

The first page. It says, "I *heart* to sew. Inspirations, Ideas, Lists, Drawings, and More..." and has a beautiful vintage picture cut out from one of my 1940's McCall magazines (the one that was already torn up! Don't worry, I don't dare cut up my other two that are in perfect shape, no matter how lovely the pictures would look in my journal).
The back outside and inside covers.

I had to tear the cardstock instead of cutting it, because I love the rough edges.

So now on to more Christmasy subjects! We put up this tree in the kitchen a few days ago. It's supposedly "my tree," because Mom says when I get married it's going with me. We got it at Walmart after last Christmas for about $5, with boxes of ornaments for probably 50 cents each. It's a white tree, with colored lights, and green, red, and deep purple ornaments. It's really beautiful.

My 1960's aluminum tree has been standing in my room since the beginning of November, but I have yet to put lights on it or decorate it. It's so hard that I keep putting it off. The tree is basically a wooden pole with aluminum branches that stick in holes drilled in it. It's made to be used with a color wheel, which I have, but I think it doesn't look as pretty that way as it does with lights. So I like to put blue lights on it. The problem is that it takes about 2 hours to put lights on because the branches constantly fall out when you're trying to wrap the lights around. So I will do it sometime before Thanksgiving and post pictures of it, because it is such a cute, unusual tree.
Well, that's all for now. I'm off to eat supper while I watch an episode of "I Love Lucy," read a chapter for a class, and perhaps try to revive my dying novel, all before "Dancing with the Stars" at 9:00 pm.
Until next time,
Kristin (missvintagegirl)

Saturday, November 14, 2009

NaNoWriMo and s'mores...

I won't say I'm giving up yet, but my novel is slowing down significantly, and despite the motivation of a paperback version, I doubt I will make it to the finish line this year. There is just so much going on-school, plus all of my other projects. Writing is hard for me. Well, writing a novel is hard for me, even though I love the idea of it. Boring school writing, like summaries and analysises and research papers, is apparently easy for me, since I do well on them and my teachers always compliment my writing. There are much easier ways for me to get out some of creativity than writing a novel...such as my sewing and crafts and my journal. My journal, thanks to much inspiration online, has become a lovely thoughts and pictures type of scrapbook. It's a big improvement over what my journals used to be: plain, orderly lines that seem to repeat one another. It's exciting to see the change.

My trip to Joann's wasn't too productive, except for some robot and spaceship fabric for my little cousin's Christmas gifts. It was on clearance, then 50% off that. Over three yards for about $5 or less. I also got a few things for my "sewing inspiration notebook," but I'll have to finish getting everything this week at Hobby Lobby. Poor Hobby Lobby. I haven't been in there for probably two weeks now, because I wasn't doing any sewing, but now it's time to return. For now I'm off to church for a bonfire, hotdogs, and s'mores. Yes!

Until next time,
Kristin (missvintagegirl)

Friday, November 13, 2009

Inspiration and loose leaf rings...

I got to sew for most of the day today, which was wonderful. I listened to "Hello Hurricane" on repeat nearly all day, with occasional breaks from Sinatra and Michael Buble. I had been getting so inspired on Etsy over the past few days. I was so excited that I couldn't sleep and was jotting down notes and ideas in the dark at 10:30 last night. I had an order to fill for someone: two large wallets and two coordinating small ones. It took most of the day, because I just can't seem to speed up my processes any! It was fun, but making something to sell to a stranger isn't nearly as much fun as sewing for yourself, your family, or people you know. I have a bag I want to make from a Simplicity pattern that's really cute. Tomorrow I'm hitting Joann's to see what they have, and to get some supplies to make a little inspiration book sort of like this one:

I need somewhere I can put my instructions and measurements for the things I sew, along with ideas, inspiration, Christmas lists, and more. And I want to use the loose leaf rings so I can add and take away things as needed. So I'm planning on making one of those little books for my sewing. I'm really excited about going to Joann's. I just want to play around with some projects without having to worry about how they turn out.

Rather boring blog today, but I need to go write for NaNoWriMo! This is getting completely out of hand now, and it's depressing. "Your Love Is a Song" is playing now. That's not depressing. I absolutely love that song; it's probably my favorite on the whole CD so far. I also love "Mess of Me" and "Enough to Let Me Go." Awesome, awesome CD!!

Until next time,
Kristin (missvintagegirl)

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Love and hurricanes...

You know you're obsessed with blogging when, on the way home from school, you're thinking of what you're going to blog about.

I just found out that the top keyword found on my blog was "love." That threw me off for a minute, until I realized that it's because of the way I write. I'm always, "I love sewing," "I love to read," "I love Cary Grant," or "I love double dipped chocolate pretzels." It sort of makes you think of how the word "love" is so overused now. But still, I hope it's obvious that I don't love new pajamas the same way I love people (although I do love new pajamas! Especially the ones at Kmart. I don't like Kmart, but they have the cutest pajama sets ever. They draw me like a magnet, not matter how many sets I already have).

The weather has been so dreary over the past few days...all rain and crazy wind. It's perfect weather for reading, though. The sky has been so grey that I wondered how the sun could possibly be up there. Today I got the new Switchfoot CD "Hello Hurricane." I am very impressed so far! It's much more rockish, upbeat, and hopeful than their past two CD's. And I think it's a huge improvement. I cannot dislike a CD that one of my favorite bands (Relient K, Switchfoot, Skillet) releases; it's just impossible. But there are some that take quite a while to grow on me, and that I still don't feel completely good about ("Oh! Gravity" was like that). "Hello Hurricane" is not like that at all. It's been lovely from the start. It put me in such a good mood that I laughed out loud at the cars that flew up behind me and rode my Beetle's bumper in the 25 mph zone. Yes, that good. So far my favorite is probably "Your Love Is a Song."

It seemed like there was something else that I wanted to talk about, but it's gone now. I seriously have to work on my novel now. If I get much further behind, it will probably become hopeless. I need like 10,000 words! I might have to resort to some tricks and even more terrible, awkward writing to meet my goals...

Until next time,
Kristin (missvintagegirl)

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Etsy and lockdowns...

Current NaNoWriMo soundtrack (for when I'm actually writing instead of pretending to): "A Charlie Brown Christmas" soundtrack and "Holiday Inn" soundtrack.

Oh, dear. I am such a terrible manager of my time. You would have thought that College Success Skills class would have cured me of that. But no. Today is supposed to be my big catch-up day with writing my novel, reading, writing in my journal, doing a little sewing, and possibly even decorating my bare aluminum Christmas tree that stands in the corner. But no. I have been distracted all morning, mostly by the Internet. It's just so tempting, when I'm writing my story. That little Internet Explorer button is right there, and it's so easy to click it, just to check Blogger or search for the meaning of a name, I tell myself. An hour later, I somehow find myself drooling over journals on Etsy. How did that happen? It's a mystery.

Seriously, though, the creativity of other people amazes me, inspires me, and makes me feel like a loser (sometimes all at once). Bookbinding? How awesome would that be? There are so many beautiful journals on Etsy that it makes me want to sit down and fill mine up with a lot of nonsense, just so I have to order another one. There are lovely handbound vintage style journals, and most of them aren't that expensive. The first thing I bought with some of my graduation money this summer was a new journal: a leather one with sheet music on it, handmade in Italy (it came from the Barnes and Noble website). It is beautiful, and it smells wonderful, but it cost $35, and I've recently discovered that I could have gotten a one-of-a-kind handmade on on Etsy for less than that.

Look at this one. How awesome is that? A journal made out of an album cover...with a record for a divider...and clips so that you can add or remove pages. That is one of the coolest things I've ever seen. Counting shipping, it would still be less than $30. And you can add pages, so basically you could use it until it fell apart.

I can see now that I'm going to get nothing accomplished today. Except those 400 words I wrote in my story this morning.

I'm so thankful that my class was canceled this morning. Our community college had a lockdown. Someone saw three guys, one with a gun and another with a baseball bat. I'm still not exactly sure what happened, but the police were called. Nobody at the school was hurt, and the lockdown has been lifted. I'm so glad that I wasn't would have been really scary. And I would have been arriving there just after the lockdown was enforced, so it would have been chaotic, I'm sure. I couldn't have gotten to class anyway and probably would have had to just drive back home.

"Dancing with the Stars" was awesome this week. Probably one of the best weeks ever. On Monday night, the dances were awesome, especially the Latin round where they had to dance with a theme of a certain decade: 60's through the future. Derek and Joanna's futuristic dance was one of the weirdest dances I've ever seen, but it was amazing. And I just love Mya and Dmitri. And Michael Buble sang my two favorite songs of his on there last night: "Haven't Met You Yet" and "Feelin' Good." It was so lovely.

Switchfoot's new CD "Hello Hurricane" came out yesterday, and JesusFreakHideout's reviews are really good for it. I'm such a dummy...I was in the Christian bookstore (both of them in our town) yesterday, but only looked at the books. I didn't even go into the CD section, because I thought that CD wasn't being released until the end of November. So now I have to stop by there tomorrow after class and pick it up. The sample clips sound very interesting!

Why is writing a story so much harder than writing in a blog? I'm try and do something productive with my day.

Until next time,
Kristin (missvintagegirl)

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

The world's best coffee and dancing...

I love, love my new Christmas layout. =) And playlist. It makes everything seem so cozy and Christmasy.

Of course, maybe my happiness has something to do with the fact that I actually have some free time! I'm finished with my internship, and my class is canceled tomorrow, so I get to stay home. On Thursday, I only have one class, then turning in a paper and coming home. Then a three day weekend. And I don't really have any major homework (just a presentation due the beginning of December). I'm so excited about having time to do things I want to do. Like catching up on NaNoWriMo. Catching up by 9,000 or 10,000 words. did that happen?

I went and registered for classes yesterday for the spring semester. My schedule isn't so great, but it's okay. And I'm excited about the classes I'm taking. My mom isn't too thrilled with the fact that two days a week, I will have classes that are later in the evening.

I have an obsessive tradition of watching every single one of my favorite Christmas movies every holiday season. So far this year, I've watched "Elf" and "Holiday Inn." I love "Elf." We watch it every year, and I think it's one of the funniest Christmas movies ever. There are so many hilarious parts that I can't even begin to describe them. Let me just say that this movie will make you cry...because you're laughing so hard. The only problem I have is that it has some language and a few unappropriate comments. But other than that, it's awesome. If you haven't seen this movie, I really recommend. Or even if you have seen it, it just gets better every time.

I bought "Holiday Inn" yesterday. I had never even seen it, but a two disc edition (with original black and white and color versions) with Bing Crosby and Fred Astaire, and a free soundtrack of the movie? How could I resist? I got to watch it at my grandparents' house yesterday, because I accidentally left my homework at home. It was a lovely movie. The songs were wonderful, and I love how it's not just a Christmas movie (although it sort of focuses on that). It covers every holiday, so I don't feel guilty watching it during the year (sort of like "Meet Me In St. covers every season!). It was so sweet, and the songs were great. I felt sorry for Bing Crosby's character, but everything worked out in the end. How on earth did Fred Astaire manage to steal away all of Bing's girls? Bing isn't the most handsomest fellow ever, but good grief. Fred Astaire is not a leading man, no matter how talented of a dancer he was. Even when he's young, he looks like an old man, and he is not handsome or romantic in any way. I'm sorry, because he was such a great dancer. Still, I much prefer Gene Kelly. =) Not only is he handsome, but he could sing better, act better, and I like his style of dancing better. Anyway, I loved how Bing Crosby always managed to poke fun at himself over his ears. He and Bob Hope joked about his ears and Bob's nose in the "Road to..." series. And here he's doing it again (2:47).

I was tempted to put it some more clips, but it can wait. There's plenty of time until Christmas! Now I'm off to write a book (ha) and then watch "Dancing with the Stars." Michael Buble is performing tonight!! I really hope it's "Haven't Met You Yet." =)

Until next time,
Kristin (missvintagegirl)

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Lover's Leap and homemade fudge...

Guess what I'm about to do? I just can't help myself. I love this layout, it's adorable, but it's just not me. I can't figure out what's wrong with it...It's just too modern or something. So when I put up my Christmas playlist, I'm also going to put up a Christmas layout. I'll keep that until the new year, and then I've found another layout that I love that I'll put up. I hate to keep switching things around.

Today my family went to the mountains. It was a lovely trip, even though all (or 99.99%) of the leaves were gone, and the trees looked bare.

I love how the grass always looks so green in the mountains. I like this picture because of the way the mountains look in the background. Here in Virginia, we have a specialty license plate that has mountains on it that look exactly like that. We rode about 50 miles on the Blue Ridge Parkway, "America's Favorite Drive." Well, let me tell you that orange road construction signs should be illegal on "America's Favorite Drive."

These ducks (at Mabry Mill) were very friendly. They swam all the way across right to us, and climbed out, shaking their feathers. Then when a couple came along with their huge dog, they shook their feathers right back into the water. I love ducks. They're so pretty, and I love the sounds they make (although I hear, from my dad, that they make a terrible mess, thus aren't so good to have around the farm). When we went to Disney World, there were a ton of ducks at one outdoor eating area in the Animal Kingdom (at least they were in the right park). They were like dogs, sitting there watching you eat, practically begging for food. But there were "Do not feed the ducks" signs everywhere, plus a very protective janitor.

The beautiful, famous Mabry Mill. Famous around here, anyway. It is a lovely place. Unfortunately, since we missed the peak by about two weeks (gasp!!), everything was shut down. The apple butter makers and the blacksmiths are gone. The park rangers are nowhere to be found. And the worst part was...

Seriously? After the peak, every single public restroom on the Blue Ridge Parkway is shut down? You've got to be kidding me. We drove for 40 miles on the parkway to Rocky Knob. We go there every year and knew there was a restroom there, and everyone in the vehicle really, really had to go. Guess what? The doors were locked. We went on a hike to a picnic area where there were some restroooms...that were locked. We hiked back to the car, almost in enough of a panic to call the 1-800 park emergency number, just to see if any rangers would show up and escort us to a restroom. We drive to Mabry Mill, where the above picture was taken. Closed. We finally had to go the extra few miles into Meadows of Dan, where we were going anyway, just to find a bathroom. It was ridiculous, like some sort of cruel joke.

After that, everything was fine. We went in a Christmas store, where we found my ornament for this year: a ruler with a pincushion, dress form, and pair of scissors hanging from it. We went in Nancy's Candy Company, one of the most heavenly places that sells the best homemade fudge, awesome chocolate and white chocolate dipped pretzels, and "I Love Lucy" chocolate factory stuff. It's a delicious tradition for us to go every year and gain several pounds over the week after. We also stopped by Lover's Leap, still one of the most amazing views I've ever seen, despite the bare trees. Last year it was so foggy that we couldn't see over the stone wall.
It was a lovely fall day.
Now I get to go study for a test, work on a research paper, and write for NaNoWriMo.
Until next time,
Kristin (missvintagegirl)

Friday, November 6, 2009

Elvis and internships...

Hopefully I'll have my Christmas playlist up very soon! I'm really excited. =)

This is going to be tough weekend. I haven't accomplished anything this morning, because we're keeping my cousin's little girl, Maya, who is so irresistible that I can't possibly get anything else done. We shared an Elvis moment. I have a clock that plays a little of an Elvis song each hour. She always hears the clock, and says, "I hurr Elvis!" ("I hear Elvis!"). She got so excited about hearing it this morning, that I decided to put in my Elvis Christmas CD for her to listen to. She loved it! While she was eating her snack, she would bounce up and down to the fast songs ("Santa, Bring My Baby Back to Me" was her favorite) and sway to the slower ones ("I'll Be Home for Christmas"). It was adorable. She is seriously the sweetest and funniest little girl ever.

Anyway, I've got my internship this afternoon (maybe my last one, because I think I've finished my 60 hours), then we're going to some friends' house for supper and maybe a movie. Then tomorrow we'll be in the mountains all day for our yearly trip, which I'm so excited about, even if all the leaves are dead. And this is what I need to do this weekend: write many, many words in my novel (as in several thousand), fill out a study guide and do some real studying for a test on Monday, and write a 4 page thesis research paper. Good grief.

Until next time,
Kristin (missvintagegirl)

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Paperback books and escalators...

This morning, I finished reading "Just Between You and Me," by Jenny B. Jones, and it was such a lovely book! A great plot, a wonderful ending, hilarious humor, and a handsome vet named Connor who was a high school nerd. I definitely recommend it to everybody!

I just saw something on the NaNoWriMo homepage that made me so excited (and motivated!). If you win this year (winning simply means writing 50,000 words in 30 that simple?), you get a code to have a free proof copy of your book in a paperback form! How awesome is that? Not just writing a novel that will stay on your computer hard drive forever, but actually having a book in your hands that has your name on it and your story in it. I'm really excited about that. And they give you months to redeem it, so you can edit your story before getting it printed, which is definitely a good thing for me. I'm so focused on the word count right now that the quality isn't so great.

My child psychology class was very enjoyable today. We were discussing sleep disorders in children, like nightmare and night terrors, and I laughed harder than I've laughed in quite a while (except for maybe when I'm rereading some of my cheesy story). We got a little off topic and started telling about nightmares we'd had.

Keral: I had this dream one time. I was in the mall, and there was this mean man chasing me! He had on this mask, and I was running up stairs, but I wasn't moving or getting anywhere. And he was right on my heels.

Alicia: Maybe you were on an escalator!

Until next time,
Kristin (missvintagegirl)

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Words and mulch...

I'm already behind on NaNoWriMo! How can that be possible? This is already much harder than I expected. But it's also very fun! I'm getting ready to write, because I haven't had much of a chance today except for a couple hundred words when I was at my grandparents'.

I spent my day taking notes, reading "Just Between You and Me" (chapter 27 now), pretending to work on my Child Psychology presentation, stumping my toe on the cardboard box my Christmas tree came out of, searching for my keys in my pocketbook, and saving a child who likes to store mulch and pebbles in his mouth, yet gets choked on two little fruit gummies. Yeah. I'm off to write some then read my Bible.

Until next time,
Kristin (missvintagegirl)

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

Rick-rack and patriotism...

My current NaNoWriMo soundtrack: Record 1 of "The Swing Years" and "The Lion, the Witch, and the Wardrobe" soundtrack.

We have a ton of tiny little clover around our house, and I love the way the rain looks on it. Like something from a fairy tale. Speaking of fairy tales, I didn't exactly start NaNoWriMo with no plot or characters. I remembered a Rapunzel retelling that I started years ago, so I've started with that idea again.

I'm rather ashamed to say that fall has slipped away from me. Here it is, nearly gone, and I didn't get any good pictures or anything. Things are so busy with school and stuff. We haven't even been on our yearly trip to the mountains yet. We're going Saturday, but I'm afraid that all of the leaves are gone. The leaves looked so lovely and alive on the trees, but now they're so pitiful and dead, rotting on the ground. It's sad. But good grief, I don't mean to sound so melancholy.

We had a good Halloween. Our bonfire, marshmallows, and hay ride got rained out, but the tacos and Wii made up for it. Someone left a Mario Party game in it, which is so much more fun than Wii Sports. Excuse the grumpy frown on my face, but I was probably in last place at this point and it was no laughing matter (I managed to get in first, just before the Wii mysteriously cut off. Halloween mischief?). Yes, I obey the rules and wear the wrist strap.

Here's my outfit! I made the poodle skirt and the neck scarf (with the evil chiffon, it took nearly as long as the skirt did). I love rick-rack. It's seriously like my new favorite thing. I should probably start using it on everything. The poodle has rhinestone eyes and a rhinestone collar, so don't be jealous. Ignore the fact that I look very wide, with no definable waist, in this picture. The sweater I had to wear was very short and wide, thus making my torso look so. Also ignore the weirdness of my feet. You can't see my cute black vintage clutch that my mom found for me very well.

So...NaNoWriMo. It's very stressful! Notice I'm using an overabundance of contractions in this post, because I have forbidden myself from using them in my story. Of course, it makes everything sound awkward, but that's okay. It adds to the word count in a wonderful way. My writing is terrible. The dialogue is forced and cheesy. Oh, well. I'm writing a novel. And Charlotte (my Rapunzel) is going to be sort of like me...minus the long, blonde hair. Prince Henry is amazing, everything you could ever want in a guy (and trust me, I need that after the many disappointing goofs I'm exposed to at school every day). I am drawn only to writing fairy tale stories, for some reason. I am so completely out of touch with today's culture that I could never write a modern story. Unless it was very autobiographical, about a girl who loved old music and movies. It would be fun to be able to make Frank Sinatra and classic movie references in a book. You can't exactly do that in a fairy tale, especially when the girl's been confined to a tower for her whole life.

Here's a little hint. Never, ever buy new books during the month of November. You will start reading them, no matter how strong your will power. Because they look so tempting sitting there on your desk and they smell so nice when you open them. Don't visit the library or even enter a store that sells books. Not even Target, but especially not Barnes and Noble. I have bought three new books over the past week or two. Not to mention the Jane Austen biography I put aside to start "Just Between You and Me," by Jenny B. Jones. I can't stop reading it just for Connor. I've always loved the name "Connor" anyway (it's sort of ironic that when I started my story three or four years ago, Prince Henry's name was Connor), and this Connor makes my heart pitter-patter. The ballroom dancing lesson reminded me of the dancing scene in Pride and Prejudice (2005), a couple trying to resist each other and pretending to dislike one another, throwing witty banter back and forth. How will it end? I can hardly put it down, no matter how much I keep reminding myself, "You've got your own story to write! You've got to answer those two questions for CHD 120! You've got to write a thesis research paper and research why television can be harmful for children! You've got to read your Bible, write in your journal, and take a bath! You've got to watch 'Dancing with the Stars' at 9:00! " In my college success skills class, we learned about "thieves of time." A good book is a serious thief of time in my hands. But I mean that in the best sort of way, Jenny B. Jones.

In other news, guess what?

This was the first year that I could vote. I missed it last year by 6 months, unfortunately. I was feeling slightly nervous about this new experience, when my dad goes into this James Stewart/"Mr. Smith Goes to Washington" thing. I said, "I'm sort of nervous." My dad says, "Think about this. People have died to give you the chance to do what you're about to do. Voting is..." and he continued on. I said, "Okay, Mr. Patriot." Don't get me wrong, I have the highest respect and gratitude for those who have given me the chance to vote. Me and Dad were just joking around. When we left the convienence store where we voted, my mom said, "I should have brought the camera! This is your first vote!"

Until next time,
Kristin (missvintagegirl)