Monday, November 29, 2010

New York Trip Part 1

Hey all! How have you been? I've been fantastic. Today was a great day and it looks like things are turning around for the better. Hurray!

I want to thank you guys for sticking with me these last few weeks while I was off job hunting, gallivanting, and wedding attending. The last few weeks have been busy and a bit of a ride, but I promise to give you all my pre-mentioned blog posts on the Logan costume's construction, secret surprise presents, and autocromes this week. I also vow to give you a sneak preview of the Holiday Dress and to show off my very first real Christmas Tree. Stay tuned!

And now back to your regularly scheduled blog. Fiance and I had a lovely holiday and we hope you did too! This was one of those great years when we got to spend Thanksgiving with both sides of the family. With his parents in Georgia and my parents in New York we normally have to choose who to spend what holiday with, but thanks to my good friend/ex-roomate/bridesmaid now bridesmatron's wedding and my family members putting up with thanksgiving dinner happening 5 days early everything worked out.

We started the trip late Wednesday night. Our flight left at 5:30pm from Atlanta and thanks to some strong tail winds we made the trip in about one hour and forty minutes. Only problem was that we had to land in a 45mph crosswinds at a teeny-tiny airport in Newburgh, NY. I knew things were going to be rough when the flight attendant started holding his arms up in the air and pretending we were all on a rollercoaster.

Neither of us ended up loosing our lunches, but several people in the back of the plane didn't make it. I'll also note that there was a real shortage of vomit-bags on this trip, probably because they had already made the same landing in the same wind earlier that day. We did eventually make it to the ground where I promptly rushed to the terminal bathroom and washed my face for about 15 minutes, trying not to lose my cookies and also trying to curb the nausea. Fiance fared much better than I did during the landing.

Thankfully the rest of the trip to my parent's house was on land and it was quite enjoyable. We hung out with my parents for a little bit that night and then hit-the-hay.

The next morning we went in search of a Bridal gift for Miss Bradlea (the aforementioned bridesmaid/matron/roomate/etc) and enjoyed lunch at a great little place called Crew. The food was fantastic, though I'll admit that I was less than impressed with their Iced Tea. I guess after living in Georgia for two years now I've become a tea snob and only like brewed ice tea. Crew's tea was powdered, but other than that I have no complaints. The atmosphere was great and the food was delicious. If you're ever in Poughkeepsie, NY go try it out.

After lunch we decided to take a walk over the Hudson.

The Walkway over the Hudson is a neat little state park that was built over an old train bridge that had burned in the 1970s. For most of my life the railway bridge just sat rotting away, but a few years ago the state turned the decaying bridge into a public walkway. It's really quite neat.

It was great to see the FDR bridge from the walkway. I can't tell you how many times I've driven across that bridge in the past, looked at the railroad bridge and wished they'd do something with it. Now they have!

Totally drove across that bridge at least 5 times a week for most of my life. No bridges near me in GA, unless you count traffic bridges like spaghetti junction.
We stopped for photo ops as well. Mom and Dad were good sports about posing with me for 20 something photos. Anyone like my new hair? It was a present from my Mom.


Grabbed a few with Fiance as well. 

Then we contemplated the river, unsolvable equations and the meaning of life. 

But only for about five seconds.

After that we snapped a few more photos before it got too dark and a little too cold.

Then it was back to my parent's house where my mother made us delicious delicious lasagna. I ate too much.

How did your Holiday's go? Tell me all about them :)

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

Camping Shenanigans

Hey readers! Thanks for all your well wishes after reading my last post. I really appreciate it. We're doing just fine and I've got some small jobs here and there to hold us over for a while. 

As I mentioned in the last post we snuck in one last camping trip of the year last weekend in Helen, GA. A few friends came along and we had a pretty awesome time, though I'll admit it was a bit cold. It was exactly what I needed for some serious stress relief. I'd forgotten how exhausting job hunting can be!

Our first stop on our little weekend getaway was at an awesome Granary and Mill right outside of Helen. 

They're an old fashion granary that stone-grinds everything. I'm one of those weird health and nutrition nuts so of course I had to buy some flours. We also bought hushpuppy mix and my southern man bought a ten pound bag of stone ground grits. Stone ground flour fresh from a mill is more nutritious that what you get in a grocery store and it tastes awesome. It's not over processed and keeps most of the germ in tact so it's much better for you. The only downsize is that it goes bad much faster than regular big-box store bought flours so I keep ours in mason jars in the freezer. Yum.

I of course stopped for a photo-op right outside the mill. I have to express my Nora Mill love whenever the opportunity arises. I don't know what kind of face I'm making there, but I guess we'll call it Sun-stare-squinty-face. 

Next we headed into downtown Helen which happens to be just about the cutest little town there ever was. They already had everything all decked out for the holidays. I typically don't like to see Christmas decor before Thanksgiving, but Helen is so cute that I had to excuse them.

We also stopped into Fiance's uncle's Cigar Shop for a visit. I don't smoke cigars, but I will admit that I love the smell of them. 

I was having so much fun during our visit that I forgot to take pictures of the smoking parlor. I pulled this image off their website so you could get a feel for the place. The smoking parlor is set up like an English cigar shop and is filled with antique chairs and sofas. It's really neat. 

Next step was a hike into the woods for about an eight of a mile and scout out a good campsite. We didn't want to be too far from the parking lot when we knew it would be below freezing in the evenings. 

Then we pitched the tent. I use "we" lightly. I pretty much just watched while Fiancé put the whole thing together. Fiancé is so woodsy. I guess it's all that Eagle Scout in him. Besides men are better at tent construction anyway. 

As it got dark we waited for our friends to arrive. They started to show up after dark and we somehow managed to get everyone's tents up without too much trouble despite it being awfully chilly and very very dark.

After a night of good conversation and general campfire revelry we all turned in.

Fiancé and I snapped a photo in the middle of the night to commemorate our first camp out at 25 degrees. Don't we just look lovely at 3 am? He was not as excited to take this picture as I was.

We had brought plenty of blankets and extra sleeping bags so we were nice and cozy all night long. We had also found a nice spot that was free of roots so we were quite comfortable. The only real hardship of the evening was a late night bathroom run. I swear my unmentionables were frozen solid by the time I returned to the tent, but I guess I've still got some northern blood left in me because even that didn't seem like such a big deal. I think some of the other members of our camping party were less impressed by the weather.

I was up a little before Fiancé the next morning. I had to hike down to the car to get some breakfast for us. As a general policy we don't like to keep food in the camp particularly since there have been a few bear attacks in the North Georgia Mountains recently. We did bring a bear bag with us, but we didn't end up using it since we weren't very far in. It snowed a little over night, but not enough to really do anything but dust our chairs.

Bringing lots of warm clothes also helped with the cold. I wore this hat and scarf that I made back in my knitting days. I also brought along my super warm Rochester, NY snow mitten/glove things that keep your hands awesomely warm. Let me take a moment to gush about these gloves. They are the warmest pair of gloves I have ever had. My hands barely get cold and you can seriously use these things as pot holders. I took our hot water pot right out of the fire using these things and couldn't even feel it. They're awesome.

We cooked some breakfast over the fire and then I enjoyed this delicious sweet potato while the menfolk chopped some wood and searched for kindling.

After breakfast we geared up for a short hike to the mountain top. Here is Lauren getting very excited about the trip. I won't bore you with pictures of the hike since it was pretty much just trees and a pretty stream, but it was a good hike. Nice and easy and very scenic. I was surprised by how crowded the trail was, but with the park being so close to Helen it makes the hike a good day trip. Fiancé stayed behind to mind the camp. We all thought it was best that he stay at the campsite since he was recovering from a knee injury.

And here I am at the end of the trail. It ends in a pretty waterfall coming down through the rocks. The water was so clear and I wanted to go swimming very badly. Unfortunately it only warmed up to the low 50s during the day so that wasn't really possible. That and the water was FREEZING. I washed my hands in the water instead. 

Friday, November 12, 2010

Nancy, where have you been?

Yes, where have I been. It's been almost two weeks since my last post. So, where have I gone you say? Well nowhere really. I was laid off last week and have been spending the last two weeks job hunting. Fiance and I took a camping vacation over the weekend which really helped to relieve some stress, but now the search continues.

Let me tell you a little something about job hunting in the art world. It makes you feel very dirty on the inside. Basically you scour the newspaper looking for something that you are remotely qualified for and then you call all your art buddies who could possibly have a connection with the company offering said job and see if they can get you an interview. Fun right?

To hold me over until another opportunity job arises I'll be picking up a little PA (read: bottomfeeder) work this coming week in the city. There are several documentary shoots going on currently and those DPs need someone to go on coffee runs and wrangle cables. I envision that this will be a lot like film school which means it could either be good or bad. Pray that I am able to survive the 16 hour work days again.

But  what about sewing you say? Don't worry, there's been plenty of that to go around. I've got several secret gift projects in the works that I'll be revealing once the intended recipients receive their mysterious gifts. In the mean time here's a preview of an upcoming Vinspiration post. Enjoy these full color autocromes from the 1900s-1910s. These awesome images are full color, not hand tinted. Very cool. I'll be giving you plenty of information on who created them and how so look out for that.

Monday, November 1, 2010


So we had all kinds of fun this weekend. Here are the final results. I was actually shocked by how many people knew who we were. I was expecting maybe one person or so to recognize us, but ten people must have stopped us to snap our photo. Fiancé even got stopped in the parking lot with a "hey Sandman!"

Once upon a time in the year 2116 a person's age is strictly legislated. 30 years to the day of your birth, Lastday, you must "renew". Those who don't renew are called Runners. They are hunted down by the elite police force called Sandmen.

Aaaaaaaaaannnnd the big reveal. We took this in a dark warehouse party so the flash did all sorts of stuff to our faces, but just pretend it's not so bad. I had to switch the Jessica belt up a bit, the o-rings I ordered came in too large. They were more like 3.75 inch rings than 3 inch rings. I'll be redoing the belt at some point, but I'm definitely going to have to get some smaller rings. Maybe 2 inch or 2.5 inch.  Also had a little costume malfunction. One of those rings decided it did not want to be attached any longer and flopped halfway off about 30 minutes into the night. It was my own fault for rushing the belt.

You can see the ridiculous quilting I did for the gray panel on the Sandman costume. Yes all those lines are stitched, not drawn. That was definitely the most tedious part of this whole endeavor. Fiancé really liked his costume and I have to say I'm quite happy with the results. The lifeclocks we bought looked awesome. I had to pull mine off at some point during the night because the Spirit Gum we used to attach them was really aggravating my skin and starting to hurt. (Curse you pasty white skin and your extreme sensitivity to everything). I solved the braless issue with pasties which also irritated my skin. Lame. Next time I wear a nude camisole like I was going to do from the beginning. 

I'll be posting how I made the Logan costume later this week. Hope you all had a great Halloween and have a  happy All Saints Day!