Life Lately

T-minus 2ish days and counting! My first DMA recital is this Tuesday at 8pm, so if you're in the San Diego area, stop by UCSD's Conrad Prebys Music Center for some new music fun!

Want proof of the awesomesauce? This concert is so cool I need two cellos :)
(Thanks to the incredible Eric Moore for lending me the pinch hitter!)

So that's what my living room looks like today. I've been in full blown music-mode for a while now, but I've managed to fit in a few minutes of crafting here and there...

My goal of making a daisy afghan is under way. Full disclosure: I'm pretty sure it will take me the rest of my life to finish. In the mean time, surrounding myself with music and daisies isn't half bad :)


Feeling Nostalgic + Freebie

Phew, tonight is the first time I've had free time in a week! Shameless promotion time: I have a cello recital at UCSD this coming January 29th at 8pm - if you're in the area, come see!

All that cello playing has kept me very very busy, but in now in my free time I'm feeling a little nostalgic. So, today I made a desktop wallpaper for myself based on a quote by Duckie from Land Before Time - "yep, yep, yep." I loved that movie growing up :)

If you want, you can download your own via flickr here. Enjoy!


My Happy Place Office

I've been working my tuckus off the last couple of weeks getting ready for my first DMA cello recital (exciting!) and inching through an unsettlingly long to-do list. So today, I thought I would share my so-far work space.

Welcome to my office.

This is the place I stash all of my too-girly-for-Tim treasures like the awesome yarn art and rattan bird on my wall (via craigslist and an antique mall respectively).

I feel so lucky to be surrounded by happy warm gold and wood tones while I work away like a busy bee. The boatloads of natural light streaming into the room never hurt :)

You know I fit a little wicker animal in there ;)
Mr. Elephant and Mr. Giraffe are bffs.

Still on the room list is to paint the walls, but I totally can't decide what color. Any suggestions???


Pretty Small Things: Record Console

As of last Friday there were two spots in my living room that needed a little more tender loving then the rest.

Now, we're down to one.

This midcentury beauty has officially replaced the Ikea Expedit that was organizing the little bay window area in my living room. Can you say major improvement?

As I alluded to in last Friday's Photo Friday, Tim and I picked this lovely lady up off of craigslist. She was initially listed at $225, but I negotiated down to $150 (nicely of course). It's not the most incredible deal in the universe, but a very fair price for exactly what we needed to spruce up this corner of the room.

Next up for this area: curtains, probably some sort of plant...

Next up for the room: PAINT!, maybe a new rug (Mr. Orange is making it difficult to find a paint color), and to find some sort of solution for the disaster zone catchall area by the door (we all have one of those right??)

And since I'm pretty sure you were wondering, yes the console is kitty approved ;)


Random Acts of Kindness

A couple of weeks ago Arianne from Changing My Marbles sent me a blog draft proposing one of the loveliest Sandy Hook Elementary School remembrances I've heard so far. On the 14th of each month, Arianne and a small army of others (including myself) are going to make a conscious effort to practice a Random Act of Kindess.

If you're like me and struggle to find ways that you can make an impact in the wake of such intense tragedy, I encourage you to consider joining in. I've been the recipient of a Starbucks drive through random act of kindess and I can tell you it was really special! The feeling that a total stranger would do something nice for me filled me with warmth, brotherly love, and hope. Either I'm a total cheese ball or this stuff really works :)

It seems to me that passing a little brotherly love around could make more than a small difference. So, if this has piqued your interest, hop on over to Changing My Marbles and read more. Thank you Arianne!


Photo Friday

A kitty on a record player to brighten your day.

Tim and I have kitchen painting plans this weekend and I'm currently in craigslist email negotiations for a beautiful console to house the very record player you see above.  Cross your fingers for me! Oh, and have a good weekend too :)

$5 or Less Christmas Gifts

I'm totally one of those annoying people who loves giving the perfect gift as much (or more) than getting the perfect gift. For that reason, my favorite part of Christmas is our giant family gift exchange - 25 people all bring secret gifts, pile them up, then randomly pick and exchange them!

It's called a White Elephant gift exchange and the "rules" are here. One of our additional family rules is that the gift can't cost more than $5. Challenge accepted.

My personal goal is to bring the most frequently exchanged gift, so I usually choose all of the gifts my family brings to the party - five of them this year.

Because you can't see it in that picture, I need to point out that the mug is actually a horse's butt and has the words "Every Family Has One" across it. Needless to say, the whole family got a great laugh out of it :)

The most hotly contested items...

This cute plant in a cup - $0.50 for the cup and $3 for the plant!

This drug book for $0.69. Why you ask? Well it has a secret...

Using a version of this tutorial, I MADE IT INTO A BOOK SAFE!! Labor = $0. 

Besides, I've always wanted to try to make my own book safe. Why not use every opportunity to try something new?? It turns out it only takes about 4 hours over two days (because the glue needs time to dry).

Pro Tip: Always bring gifts you'd like to take home yourself. Tim and I ended up with one of these each. Can you guess which ones???


2012 in Review

I was nostalgically perusing my posts from 2012 this morning and realized I completely forgot to do a review of 2012! I had a lot of fun with 2011's recap, so even though we're heading forward full steam into 2013, I'm going to take a bloggy moment to look backwards.

~~~~~ Some DIY ~~~~~

This year I seriously upped my number of homemade goodies, a fact that I'm surprised and totally thrilled about. (You can see all of the things I've made here.) My wedding brought with it a lot of crafty goodness, but I'm also generally seeing more opportunities to do things myself everyday. That definitely makes me very happy :)

~~~~~ Fave Finds ~~~~~

Craigslist, you are my spirit animal. Actually no, gross... that would make my spirit animal kind of messy and poorly designed... either way I like it a lot. I sincerely hope finding treasures in thrift stores, yard sales, and on craigslist will never get old.

~~~~~ Helpful Hints ~~~~~

One of the best parts of living a crafty lifestyle is always learning new things. Of course I can never wait to share those knowledge nuggets with you!

~~~~~ Reveals ~~~~~

A hat tip to the voyeurist in all of us, I love sharing my homestyle progress via reveals. Even the not-totally finished (or not nearly finished) ones :)

So there you have it, some of my favorite posts of 2012. If you're hungry for more, feel free to peruse my archives or the category links of to the right there in my sidebar. Never want to miss another post ever again? First of all, I love you. Secondly, add insideways to your reader or have each post emailed to you. Easy Peasy.

To all of you who read insideways, thanks for a really incredible year. Seriously. You're the best.


Happy New Year!

One of my absolute favorite things about the New Year is the contagious optimism everyone brings to this fresh start. In a strange way, it makes me feel more warm and fuzzy than Christmas - there's just so much hope and positive energy!

I'm not usually one for resolutions myself. I tend to make gradual life-style changes or set shorter term goals (does anyone else feel like a year is way too daunting??), but this year I'm taking the resolution plunge; I'm going to spend 2013 learning to have a smaller impact on the environment. Before you write me off as totally obnoxious, let me clarify... what I don't want is to become obsessive, self-righteous, or completely removed from the world around me. I'm aiming more for awareness, personal changes, and practical solutions.

I'm pretty sure my first step will be to buy a worm farm.

ANYWHO, Happy New Year to all of you great people!! I'd loooove to hear about your resolutions in the comments!