June 29, 2009

Monday Insperation # 15: Pre Raphaelite

Sorry this is so late. I was actually productive today (well marginally productive) and just got around to checking my email right now. Points of Order:

1. I am going to be doing a giveaway/contest/enticement to get readers and comments here very soon (and by soon I mean after The San Francisco trip which is in ONE WEEK!). For people in the good ol' USA (pronounces ooo-sa), part of the giveaway will be the $5 gift card to old navy that I got, and yes I actually got it, so it wasn't a scam. Now to see if the modelquins die. But back to the point. There will also be a pair of earrings included made by yours truly. Now I have a few people who read this outside the USA (again ooo-sa), so the gift card ain't gonna be much help, unless like me you are a online shopper, however with the value of the American Dollar dropping, you'll probably be able to buy something for your equivalent of a $1.50. Thus I would like to have two winners, one who'll get the gift card and earrings, and one (not from the ooo-sa(that's just easier)) who'll get the earrings and __________. So what is my point? What do you people want? I do live in the Golden State* and can thus send you my weights worth in sand if you really want, or an orange**, but what would you gals like to get? Let me know. Also the Giveaway will be a fashion challenge so just be prepared.

2.When I was younger and discovered google images I became obsessed with Pre Raphaelite paintings. I love the softness or them, yet the dark themes and often colours. They're like fairy tales. Romantic, beautiful, dark, brooding. I think they are absolutely beautiful. So this weekend I was going through my pictures and found some old ones. For your viewing pleasure:

I want her hair and dress. Even if it is purple.

So here is a beautiful woman in a beautiful dress, in a beautiful forest, sleeping peacefully, with deers surrounding her = my dream life.

This reminds me of my mom for some reason. Not that she is angry and bites on flowers, it just looks like her.

This one and the one below are both of Ophelia. I love Shakespeare, and Hamlet and the name Ophelia. I think drowning is a romantic way to die. I'm a little bit morbid.

*Until last year I thought we were the sunshine state, until I called it that and someone told me that was Florida. Frankly I think Sunshine and Golden are the same thing, so whatever. We should really be the Silicone State, but who am I to talk, I just live here.

**Incidentally, Riverside, the hellmouth I'm writing from, was actually a British "colony" in the early 1800s who became famous for growing oranges (suck on that Orange County), and put California on the map as far as orange growing is concerned. Our Old Spaghetti Factory is in and old orange packing house (apparently a several generations back grandmother of mine worked in one and until I was about fifteen I was convinced it was the same one as Spaghetti Factory, but that is not the case), and Where Magnolia Avenue, and Arlington Avenue meet there is a gated placard-ed Orange tree that some claims is the first in Riverside. We also invented the Navel Orange (which until recently I thought had something to do with sailors ans scurvy(which is not the case)), and there are these strange mosaic-ed shiny orange statues that are littered throughout the city, and are quite obnoxious. There used to be and Orange Blossom Festival that was horrible and made traffic a nightmare, and got my brother hit by a car. It finally got shut down ofter the cops got tired of having to go in and bust up all the gang shootings that happened every year. I once had to sing for some high Riverside mucky-mucks, which was a block from my old house and I was walking home at like ten at night and some guy was beating the crap out of this lady, and I had to call 911, but they were so backed up with all the other calls that were coming from the Orange Blossom Festival, that it took them an hour to get there and because I was the one who had called I had to stay. The lady was fine, but the guy stole her car and $60. It was fun. We also had a Chinatown that burnt down in like 1903, and all that is left of it is the brick wall that was built into a new building, a plaque, and the street that is named Wong Way. No Joke. I've seen it. It's really called Wong Way. Oh Riverside... (also don't ask me why I know all this, but I actually am incredibly well versed in Riversidian history. I used to spend alot of time in the old book section of the Public Library. Apparently "Old Book" in Riversidian-ees means The Complete and Accurate History of the City of Riverside and some old slides of newspapers from the 1900's. in 1910 Mr. and Mrs. Horace Walters announced the engagement of their daughter, Sylvia Walters, to Mr. Edmund Gaffer III, son of Mr. and Mrs. Edmund Gaffer II. Why do I remember this?

June 25, 2009

I'm just that awesome

I was going to post pictures of what I looked like today, but unfortunately I didn't get any. I'll try tonight. But know I looked cute.

So remember back in December when I told some old client lady that I was a ninja for no apparent reason? So those same clients came in today. We got a call from the receptionist (the hamster looking one) saying they (the really old people clients) were here. I was writing three emails at the time, and not really paying attention to what was going on. So then about ten minutes later I was finished with my emails and suddenly I remembered the old people clients who as far as I knew were still waiting up at the front. So I yelled to my dad.

"Hey aren't there old people still waiting for us?"

Jess and Michael turned quickly with shocked grins on their faces and exclaimed "They're in there!"So in an epically genius save I said:

"Yeah the old people who are always outside.. waiting for us... y'know..."

To which Michael and Jess just started laughing. At this point I expressed some annoyance with the fact that they came back here and didn't make their presence known, then Jess told me that apparently they waved at us and said hello.

And this is how I fail at life.

On a similar note I was contacted by old navy last night via email. Someone had chosen me to be some receiver of kindness (giving a sucker punch in the gonads to that whole Karma theory) in the form of a $5 gift card (way to go all out Old Navy). This is the email exchange that proceeded:

"Hello Ashley,
I am reaching out to introduce myself and let you know that Old Navy has chosen you for this week’s kindness appreciation! We’d like to offer you a $5 Old Navy gift card to show our appreciation for keeping a positive outlook on our brand.
As the Old Navy brand ambassador I am required to surf the Internet to handpick fabulous fashionistas who love Old Navy. You are one of them! By the way, I found your e-mail address on your blog. Hope you don’t mind that I contacted you.

To which I replied:

"forgive me if I seem rude, I'm just wary of virus scams. Are you a real person, who actually found my blog, or a computer-bot who is sending this out to try and kill my computer? My computer is crap, but it's what I've got. I'm very protective. If you are real then I am very honoured, and thank you kindly. If you are a virus-bot, then I'll probably have to come after you.
also if you're real, I hope I don't come off as a rude snot. I really do talk like this.

To which she replied:

"Hi Ashley,
LMAO, I am a REAL person! I’ll give you the link to my Facebook profile if you’d like. I totally understand why you are protective so I didn’t think you were being rude at all.
If you are still interested in the gift card just send me your mailing address and you will have it by early next week.
Let me know if you have anymore questions.

To which I replied:

"Okay awesome. Sometimes people think I'm not so nice because I say things and they take it the wrong way. I can never be to careful.
I'd love the gift card! I was mostly suspicious because I've never been given anything through my blog before. But I would be very happy to take any free money you want to offer.
My mailing address is as follows:
Miss Ashley Barrett
blah, blah, blah, blah, blah (Not really in the email)
Riverside, California 92508
Thanks alot! I knew my shopping addiction would pay off in the end...
quick note though, as much as I love Old Navy, could you pass along to someone that the stupid "modelquin" things are just creepy and not funny. I mean, it's on the same creepy scale as the King from the Burger King commercials and that thing gives me nightmares.
~Ashley Barrett"

Yep. That just happened. Sometimes being me is awesome, and sometimes, it's really awesome.

By the by I am playing again tonight and my thumb seems to be recovering quite jollily. I broke a blood vessel so that's great and has led to my hand being discoloured, but other than that it's much better. It's still very sore, but I'll live.

On a not totally similar, but pretty close note, I went to go meet my voice teacher today to pay him and I walked to the door behind which he was standing and leaned over it (it's one of those dutch door things where the top half opens separate from the bottom) and my blouse popped open. I don't know if he noticed, but I did everything in my power to button it back up and keep from blushing. Awesomest day ever.

June 24, 2009

Yesterday was not exactly the happiest day on earth.

It all started at 2:35 am. I had a dream. A dream about someone I do not particularly care to dream about. A dream that made me wake up and cry. A dream about things that I thought I'd moved on with. A dream that made me angry that I haven't moved on with it. And a dream that was just downright mean for my dumb subconcious to dig up. It was horrible and annoying. And despite the fact that I wanted to jump in the car and go punch someone in particular in the face and tell them to get out of my head, and life (which I had thought they were until then), I forced myself to go back to sleep and think of something else. Which of course didn't happen, and it just kept repeating the same thing over and over again until Grace came in screaming about how she was four now. So when I woke up I was determined not to let it effect my day. I was going to Disneyland, the happiest place on earth, and I was going to be in a good mood even if it killed me.

I did a pretty good job until we got to the parking structure to park.

My Disneyland adventure began with my becoming left handed. I've been right handed all my life and never really wanted to change that. So yesterday Eric began attacking me while being spazzy and suddenly as I put my right hand out to defend myself, my thumb nail was touching my wrist. He bent my thumb all the way back spraining the damn thing into eternity. It's still about four times it's normal size and bruised and throbs. I've had to relearn to do everything with my left hand. A.Noy.Ing. It hurt all day, tear inducing, shooting pain, all day. So I was a little annoyed/miffed/not really in the mood to deal with stupid tourists, but I put on a smile and went on, because I was going to be in a good mood dammit.

Then we ate and went to go get on a ride, which I didn't end up going on because I went to meet Bri and Michael in one of the shops. We did some shopping, which was all fine and dandy. Bought three really cute things. Then we met my parents again. By then it was nearly nine pm, and we went and got ice cream as Gracie's "cake".

There are some things I really, really don't like about Disneyland, and most of them happen in the summer during tourist season. People are just plain stupid, mean, rude, and idiotic. They don't know how to walk, think that just cuz they're at Disneyland they must form lines everywhere they go, and expect that because they are the tourists we should all bow to them to make their experience brilliant. It's Disneyland. There are going to be running children, loud noises, lots of people, and an occasional traffic jam. If you don't like it, go home.

So after ice cream, Bri, Michael, and I went to go to Downtown Disney becuase Bri wanted to go to Sephora. Now I don't really wear makeup. I wear some liner, mascara, and powder, and that's about it. If we're going out for something special I sometimes wear eyeshadow, and lipstick, but mostly I stick with chapstick and mascara. I bought three things at Sephora. And spent....


$107.66!!!!! WTF! Seriously! For a bottle of cheap perfume, some face tint, and mascara??? I don't think so! So I'm taking it all back. I don't wear makeup enough to justify it. Mascara goes bad after two months no matter what the quality, so yeah I'd rather spend seven dollars on it then 19. And I wear so little powder that I keep a compact for 6 months, so I don't mind spending 10$, but not $42. I was so mad at the damn total I sat mentally spewing evil thought the whole car ride home. And it didn't help that I couldn't move my thumb. Then I came home and had an email that something was messup with my bank account, and I just about lost it then.

It wasn't a horrible day, but did make me realize that I really need to watch my spending much better. I really didn't over spend (other than the dumb sephora crap), I just lose track, and I'm so dimwitted when it come to numbers that I have a hard time tracking it all again. Tonight I'm going to sit down a build myself a real, honest to goodness budget. If I ever hope to get out of here, I'd better get cracking on it.

In other news, my birthday is in two months, and I am debating between having my parents buy me a plane ticket to go up to Portland for the weekend, or the new Scotty-dog print dooney and bourke bag. I mean I'd never pay that much for a bag, but if they want to buy me it, go ahead. Also I happen to love scotty dogs more than anything. Honestly though I think Portland is going to win.

Also I leave for San Francisco in 13 days!! eek!!! I'm so excited/slightly stressed over getting things done before then. I think I'm going to be in for a busy weekend.

Sorry if I sounded so nasty at the beginning of this post, it was just one of those days and I was frustrated. But hey It's Chipotle wednesday.

June 23, 2009

"Ash, in our band, I play da Guitar, and you play da Microphone"

Happy Birthday Grace!

Despite the fact that you woke me up at 7:30 on my day off to announce to me that you were no longer three, I love you oodles kiddo!!! (The title was what Grace told me when she announced that we were going to write a song together)

We're off to Disneyland and as Grace says: "We're gonna ride rides, and I have to pick, cuz it's my birthday. We're gonna eat at the space restaurant, cuz I want noodles. And maybe we'll see the Jonas Brothers."

Yesterday she held up two fingers to Delaney and said: "how many fingers do I have up?"

Delaney replied: "two..."

Grace nodded her head and said: "good. I was just checking to see if you were on crack."

She's so my little clone.

Eventually I'll post pictures of all the recent projects I've been working on, but until then, have a wonderful day!

June 22, 2009

Monday Inspiration #14- Summer time and the livin' is easy

I'm pooped. Yesterday was a really wonderfully wonderful day, but I am super wiped. We went back down to Oceanside with my family this time and surfed, and ate, and played cards, and walked to get ice cream, and ate fish and chips, and bought coffee and played at the little kids park, and...

I know I'm not a summer person. Never have been, never will be. That said I really love the idea of summer things. So this week I complied a list of my favourite summer songs. Sure, Videos in blogs are annoying, but honestly some of these songs just make you so happy, or really capture the idea of that "California Summer." (which by the by, is nothing like it's romanticized to be, but I'll forgive them and just post the songs)

#5- I wish they could all be California Girls- The Beach Boys
I know. But it's a great song.

#4- California One/Youth and Beauty Brigade- The Decemberists
If you've never driven up the 101 then listen to this song. It IS the 101 in song form.

#3- I'm Yours- Jason Mraz
No explanation needed.

#2- I Know Where the Summer Goes- Belle and Sabastian
This is like the perfect song for a movie montage. It would be one of those 80's does the 50's teen summer romance movies.

#1- Beach Baby- The First Class
This song just makes me smile to no end.

Have a wonderful day! Tomorrow I have lots to show you!

June 20, 2009

She stood staring out at the blue-grey sea, peaceful and at one with nature. Then nature dumped a wave over her head.

So here is a word (or several) of wisdom:

If you have not been surfing in four months, and then suddenly decide you are going to go surfing while at the beach with some friends on a day when the tide is really high, the surf is super rough, and the undercurrent is incredibly strong, do not expect to come home unscathed.

I re-broke my toe.

My shoulder, and thigh are pretty bruised.

There are several fin slices on my legs.

Every muscle in my body wants to fall off.

The top of my right foot hurts oddly.

This is basically what the end result of the above conditions. And yes that is me, upside down, face slamming into the board. It was fun.

But it was actually really fun and relaxing. Oddly enough, it was 90 in Riverside, and when we pulled into Oceanside the car temperature thingy said it was 69. When we pulled off the 15 and onto the 76 the sky was suddenly overcast, and black. It really wasn't that cold down there. I loved it, while mostly everyone else complained a little. But we all had a good time, and got to eat fish and chips and I had this giant chocolate covered eclair with my cafe mocha thing that was huge. Good times.

Oh great. I just now found out that we're going surfing tomorrow for Father's Day.

My poor muscles...

June 19, 2009


I meant to post this earlier and forgot. This is a little drawing I did yesterday when I got bored at work. We made our summer schedules the other day and came up with the system of B-JAM to make it easier to understand. I have no drawing ability, and my ahdn writing is crap, but it came out kind of cute. Michael's not really some Amazon, I just have no concept of persepctive.

Click to enlarge.

So, hi...

No I'm not dead. I've not fallen prey to swine flu. I've not been shanghaied, or kidnapped for human trafficking (I should never have been allowed to see Taken). I've been sewing, working, getting my computer back (and it's actually fixed!!!!), shopping, and planning. I've been very busy, and while I wanted to blog about it all, I haven't.... So bad me, but it shan't happen again.

Jess and I went to go get lunch yesterday at a cafe in an antique store, and this sign was sitting there looking happy. It cracked me up so I took a picture.

Only photo I managed to take this whole week. This is in the vintage section of the antique store.
Bag: Thrifted (buffalo exchange in Portland, Or.)
Dress: Thrifted(Goodwill)
Shoes: Thrifted (Salvation Army)
Good Glory this is a bad picture. but oh well. Today I am off to the beach with friends for surfing, and fish and chips, and maybe Upstart Crow coffee. Summer is definitely here. June Gloom is over and it's supposed to be in the 90's this weekend. I have had In-n-out twice this week, and slept with the fan on and window open. If I get a sunburn today, we'll really know summer's here....
I have lots to show, but I probably won't post those until Sunday.
But hey, I have my computer back!

June 14, 2009

Lovely Weekends and Sea Monsters

Happy Anniversary Mom and Dad!
My parents are off cavorting around Seattle right now for their anniversary. Last time they went away, it was a near disaster (though not because of me, but because certain sisters of mine could not control their hormones). This time has been the loveliest weekend ever. No one has fought, people have pretty much done what they are supposed to right away, and everyone has been pretty doggone co-operative. Let me tell you, this is an amazing feat for seven siblings to do.
Yesterday we barbecued burgers and hot dogs, had watermelon, veggies, and jello with homemade whipped cream, swam in the pool, watched Harper's Island with Jessica, Screamed more than normal at this episode, made some coffee, and went to bed. It was really wonderful.
I had another weird dream last night*. This time I was at some open football field singing with Chamber Singers (which I dropped out of last fall), and then the director (who doesn't like me, just my voice), came up to me and asked if he could help me, and I explained that I wanted to take voice lessons through the school instead of paying on my own (which I don't), and he said that over the summer in order to take voice lessons I had to learn how to fill out Bankruptcy Petitions, and I was all excited because I already know how to do that. Then my voice teacher showed up wearing shorts, flip-flops, and a t-shirt (he has never dressed like that on campus), and he asked me what was up, and I told him the deal I'd just made with the choir director, and he was all happy for me, then out of nowhere these two creatures came out of nowhere offering me some fish to eat. They kinda looked like a cross between Ursula from The Little Mermaid, Medusa, A sleestack from Land of the Lost, and Cindy Crawford. One was blue and one was green and they had originally been throwing out tentacles at each other fighting, then they saw me and gave me this fish and suddenly my voice teacher was there again shooting magical balls of flame (that was blue and green) at them and trying to get to me. I was on some acid-like trip from the fish and just laughed the whole time. Then he finally backed off the two fish ladies and grabbed me and pulled me out of the music building (where we had suddenly moved to during the discussion about Bankruptcy Petitions) muttering how I was now "much more involved than he had hoped." Then once I wasn't high anymore from the fish (which I now carried in my arms in a basket), Steve explained to me that I was a carrier of magical powers that the fish ladies wanted (they had names, but I don't remember them), and he was a protector of humans from the ocean peoples and had been instructed to keep watch over me. He surmised that it was the choir director, who told them where I was since he is actually one of them in disguise and why he was always so desperate to keep me around. He figured the reason they attacked now was because my magical powers would become more evident now, thus they could harness them for evil.

I've gotta lay off the coffee before bed. And why do all my dreams have to be these epic things?
However the above would explain a whole lot of stuff.

I'm off to be productive, and maybe do some of the mending I'm putting off. Hope everyone has had a lovely weekend so far!

*For new readers, I get weird dreams alot. I don't make any of this up, it happens and I can't change it. I don't know why I have them, I just do. They usually come in week long "episodes", and then everything is fine for a week or two. I do not take any drugs, legal or otherwise, nor do I smoke anything, legal or otherwise. It just happens. Then I share them with you for your amusement. Or mine, I'm not sure which.


So I just saw this on yahoo's OMG thing that I find mysef oddly drawn to. This is handbag designer Lulu Guinness. The bag she's holding is her own. The yahoo people went on and on about it's horrificness. Frankly, I think it's brilliant. I hate the colour, but I am so going to wear a dress with eyes on it someday.

June 12, 2009

Over the Rainbow, and other tales.

I always find it funny how blogging reminds us all that the world is very small, and that really we're all very similar. Andrea* posted a post about being in a fashion block: times when you just aren't inspired by anything and you stare into the depths of your closet going "Uhhh what am I supposed to do with a skirt again?" This was me Monday morning. Sunday I randomly went into the Kohls near my house. I never go to Kohls, but in I went and out with a Wizard of Oz shirt I came. The Wizard of Oz is my favourite movie of all time. I love it (I mean come on a story that focuses on shoes!), and always will. I discovered this movie when I was two and apparently didn't stop watching it over and over for weeks. I still love it to this day. When I'm down I watch it, because it always makes me smile. Sure it's cheesy, and childish, but so am I. Every year for my birthday and Christmas I get at least one Wizard of Oz token. Key chains. magnets, figurines, I have a ton! It also helps that Poppies happen to be my favourite flower (and always have been). So Monday morning I got up looked around saw the shirt and had a brilliant idea. What if I dressed like Dorothy Gale? For a whole week, using only what I already have in my wardrobe. I've done inspiration from book characters before when I was uninspired, but never posted about it. So I thought it would be really fun and interesting to see what I came up with. So here's the result: (if you just look at the pictures, go to the bottom and read there. I have a quick question.)

The day that started it all. I rummaged through my closet desperately. I hadn't done laundry and just didn't have any inkling as to what I should wear and thus I came up with this brilliant idea. I was just going to wear the shirt that inspired it all, but them I saw my Anthro shirt hanging up. So I wore an Emerald shirt in honor of the Emerald City, My red crinoline, red flats (cuz who would Dorothy be without her red shoes?), and my "basket" bag. The skirt is actually my favourite skirt ever. I bought it at a rummage sale and it's by Bitten By Sarah Jessica Parker, and began life as a trapeze dress. I cut off the ugly straps and thus it became my favourite high waisted circle skirt.

Shirt: Anthro (on sale for $20!)
Skirt: Thrifted
Crinoline: Mission Galleria Antiques
Shoes: Pinupgirlclothing.com
Bag: Forever 21
Crinoline make me happy.
So I went with the pinafore dress idea here, trying to make it all very little girly. Funnily enough someone got it on Tuesday. It was sadly the office douche, but whatever. At first he told me he was going to buy me a really big lollipop to carry around. Then he saw my feet and laughed. "so you've got some Silver Slippers on! Wanna click us all home?" I was quite surprised because yes I had intentionally worn my silver slippers instead of ruby slippers as an tribute to the books rather than the movie. Yes I own sliver slippers for this very reason.

Headband: Target
Shirt: Target
Dress: Me
Socks: Target
Shoes: Target (seriously need to stop shopping there so much)
Bag: Forever 21
So this one was the most obvious of all my outfits this week. People at work started to catch on, and every person who saw me at around four o'clock asked me if I could "click us all home". It was pretty stupid, but I smiled and took it. If you wear sparkly red shoes, you are just going to have to take all of the "there's no place like home" comments that come. And yes I did have these shoes in my closet already. Every girl needs a pair of sparkly red shoes in her life. My sister got these for me from some random shoe store in NYC. I always wanted those red sparkly "Dorothy Shoes" they make little girls, but my parents never got them for me (and yes I still have a grudge against them for that), so when Bri saw these while she was in New York one year she called me and practically squealed my ear off telling me about them. She got to the part about "red sparkly heels" and I was lost then in my own squeals. These are my favourite shoes ever.

Hair clips: H&M
Top: NY & CO
Skirt: Thrifted (altered by me)
Shoes: Random shoe store in NY
Bag: Forever 21

So this was inspired by the yellow brick road, and the Wicked Witch, who I've always secretly liked. I never understood why everyone was always on her case, I mean if some punk killed my sister and took my sparkly red shoes, I'd probably chase her down too.

Hat: Magpie Vintage (Portland Oregon)
Cardigan: Target
Dress: Target
Tights: Target
Shoes: Target (Oh my that's alot of target)
Bag: Forever 21
(Our stand in Toto was not co-operating as much as I'd have liked)
Friday (today):
I was home with Kiddos today and have had nothing to do, so I went for comfort and wore the shirt that inspired it all. Can't forget my red shoes!
Shirt: Kohls(!)
Skirt: Old Navy
Shoes: Keds (also from Kohls but a very long time ago)
("Toto" actually co-operated this time)
So How'd I do? Was this super lame? I think it would be fun to do this once a month as a thing you can join in. On Sunday I'll post the inspiration, and Monday-Friday who ever wants to join me can. No one has to spend the whole week doing this, unless they want to, but I'll post my outfit everyday. I'd love for everyone to send me any links to their outfits! It'll be fun to see what everyone else comes up with even when we're inspired by the same thing. If enough people think this would also be cool/fun/not as lame as I'm pretty convinced it is, then I'll do it the third week of each month.
Sorry for the lengthy post.
*I meant to link to her earlier and forgot so there you go! I highly recommend her blog. Hers is one of my favourites to check each day and see what wonderful ensemble she presents.

June 10, 2009

Recipe for salvaging an "off" day:

Overcast, cold day
Three cups Peppermint Tea
Clair De Lune by Claude Debussy on endless loop
No lights in your office
Unplug/shut off all phones
Allow to soak for fifteen minutes preferably with eyes closed.
Bask and enjoy.
You can thank me later. Right now I'm making more tea.

June 9, 2009

Terrorists and Bankruptcies

So y'all know I work in a Law Office. My dad's Law Office specifically. He does Bankruptcy Law and is very good at it. It bores me to tears, but there are shoes to buy and I need cash. I spend most of my day waiting at the Bankruptcy Court, which is filled with many a strange characters. The security guards are my favourite. In order to enter the court house you need to show Federal ID (passport, DL), and take your shoes off (even sandals, which is stupid(I have a very funny bit I do about the time Jessica tried to argue with the guard about wearing flipflops)). But the guards are really nice old guys, who laugh at everything, and lately I have become their favourite thing to laugh at/about/with. I bring books to read while I wait and now as I put my shoes on and get my stuff from the X-ray machine, me and the guards discuss literature and one of them has now begun reading The Great Gatsby because I've been reading F. Scott Fitzgerald. One of the guards thinks my heart shaped sunglasses are the bee's knees and often wears them for all the other guards once they come out of the X-ray. It amuses me muchly.

But other than the guards it's a pretty boring place, full of mean, nasty old ladies, who seem to think I am charming. So today I went in as normal to file something that should have been filed yesterday, and I was standing in line minding my own bees wax, when in walked a very tall old man. He looked a little gruff, by also like he would probably be a nice guy. So when the head mean old lady came out to ask us what we needed to do, to make sure things were running efficiently. I told her I had some no-fees to file, she moved on to the old man behind me. He dropped a badge that read HOMELAND SECURITY. "I am from Homeland Security and we have a subject that we believe is affiliated with Al Qaeda, that has recently filed bankruptcy. I need a print off of the entire petition right now." The head biddy practically ran back to the office area and before my paperwork was done being stamped the old biddy was back with the petition and all that. So this is the thing, I don't know which of the details of this situation to discuss first; the fact that Terrorists are filing bankruptcy (couldn't Osama Bin Laden hawk some diamonds or something to give them money), or that there are terrorists in Riverside? What I wouldn't give to see their Creditor Matrix:
Creditor: Osama Bin Laden, Address: unknown, Amount: $100,000,000,000,000,000.00
But this totally made my day. I ran back to the office to tell everyone, I was so excited.
In other news I have been called "lollipop" all day. The reason I will reveal on Friday. I have a new segment here that I think is going to be very fun. If it goes well I may even include YOU.
In other, other news, I spent the rest of my day plunging toilets at the office. I shan't go into details, but there are three bathrooms here and only one had worked until today. So I put on a mask, and plunged, and drain-o-ed, complained to no end about how I shouldn't have to clean the toilets, or plunge them, when we have a cleaner, who doesn't do her job, because she thinks that the bathrooms are gross. I mean she's right, but, uh, she gets paid to clean them...
Fun day.

June 8, 2009

Monday Inpiration #13: Gypsy Child

I had a highly unconventional childhood. I was home schooled and basically allowed to run a-muck at will (not that I didn't actually do any school work, I did). My mom has always believed that education is more valued when it's something you're interested in, which led her towards a more unschooling aesthetic. If we were interested in something, we learned about it. Yes we had to learn the basics at some point, but mostly this was how my childhood went. All my siblings and I were allowed to cultivate our own personalities, and identities, as well as imaginations. We lived with my grandparents when I was little, who had a very large open field behind their house. In the summer it was always dry and hot out there with gross dying weeds, but in the winter there was tall grass and dandelions which you could hide in and watch the clouds float by. My grandfather is a pastor and we lived in the "parish". Up at the church there were tall stacks of rock formations (they were mostly fake rocks, but we didn't really know that), that we used as a jungle gym. There were three caves one of which was covered by a tree (which I later discovered a family of rattlesnakes in). These made perfect settings for a multitude of games, including my favourite from ages 6-9: Russian Maiden (I'm not even joking about that. I wore a bandanna on my head tied under my chin, a red dress, a white apron and my rainboots since I didn't have the appropriate granny boots. Everyday, for three years. I loved that game and it always ended with me falling in love with some wealthy and handsome prince. Yes I was quite impressionable as a child).
Some people have said my parents were strict (which they weren't and never have been and I've never understood that), but really they just had their own ideas about life and child rearing. They were just bohemians. And I am a Gypsy Child.
I always remember long summers in the field right before summer. It's not that I long for those same days again, just that I look back with fondness at how free and beautiful they were.

If I ever have children, you may expect that they too, will spend most of their days playing whatever nonsensical game in the yard, and enjoying their childhood the way it was meant to be enjoyed.

Every one's got finals this week, save me, so I'm covering everyone. I'll be in the office from 9-5 every day this week. My parents leave for Seattle on Thursday (my mom was told last night), so Bri, Chel and I are dividing up duties. Bri's got finals all the way up to Friday. Then Saturday we're having a "School is over, summer is here" Shindig at my house with some friends. I may not be around that much this next week, or I might be writing more than normal, either way accept my advanced apologies.
One year 18 days

June 7, 2009

I died...

I dyed my hair. I was very tired of the four inches of dark brown roots and the rest being this strange honey-red brown. My hair is naturally a shade lighter than this, but I figure it'll look better than whatever the heck was there before as it grows out.

Currently I am highly annoyed with certain people. I'd like it if they stopped "joking" about things that aren't true, and stopped making me the punchline to all their jokes. Believe me, I could make you into several punch lines, none of which you really want to hear. I suppose it is because I am far too polite, but the politeness can end now. Mess with me sweetheart, I dare you*.
Also, um, I'm an adult. Why don't you stop pretending I'm not, and you are. Cuz guess what honey, you haven't got it all figured out, nor do I need your advice. Stop being do damn pedantic or the favour will be returned.
I'm off to the garage where I will have an epic battle with a black widow, then find the fabric I need for the dress I'm going to make. By the way does anyone have any idea what to do with really awesomely cheesy unicorn fabric? I mean it's unicorn fabric so it's awesome, but it's also unicorn fabric so it's cheesy. It keeps staring at me from my stash, daring me to make it into something amazing. I think there's only one and a half yards. Be brilliant folks.
*Not intended to sound as nasty as it did. I actually wrote this whole thing very calmly. I'm not angry, just annoyed. Otherwise this has been a perfectly lovely weekend. It only got up to 73 today. The weather this weekend has been wonderful.

June 6, 2009

So yesterday was payday...

and I'm NOT buying these:

From Modcloth

From DewberryVintage

From What Circa Vintage

From Adidas
Plans for a Saturday:
Catch up on blogs
Cut out and start sewing dress
Mending (I have an ever growing pile calling me)
Make some music
Organize meals/work schedules for when my parents leave this thursday (they are going to a super secret location for a few days for their aniversary)
Clean up my sewing mess that's been sitting on the table for three weeks
Deposit $$
Get Money Order to pay off speeding ticket # 1
Arizona sent me a letter telling me I missed a court date and if I don't show up or pay, they'll issue a warrant for my arrest.
I wrote Arizona a letter telling them to not get their panties in a bunch, they'll have their $300 soon.
I can't find any shoes to fit over my toe...

June 5, 2009

Holy Kracow!

I frocking broke my toe while walking up a curb on my way back from lunch. I almost hit face first into the sidewalk, but managed to spring up at the last second. But my toe is all swollen and puffy and stingy. I've broken this toe a million times, so it's not new, just inconvenient. shoes don't fit my feet anymore... Oh well. Here's my ghetto rigged brace (i.e. packing tape and a paper towel. apparently there's no first aid kit at the office):

Normally the sides of my feet are straight.

and just for good meansure:

Laugh all you want.

Blouse: Thrifted
Collar: Thrifted
Belt: Torrid (from when I was fifteen)
Skirt: Thrited
Shoes: Target
Shades: Walgreens (!)

I love the details of this collar. So pretty.

This was yesterday's outfit.
Shawn told me I looked like a School Teacher.
The Hamster (who's real name is Kim) said I looked like a School Girl.
Andrea, a really nice paralegal who I like alot called me a Librarian.
It's supposed to rain again today, which inspired me to write a list.
Things I love on a rainy day (Reader's Digest version):
  • Hats. Any hat will do, but I am partial to berets. I think this has something to do with the fact that my last name is Barrett, Which by the by means head, or chief, so yes there is a connection between Beret, Barrette, and Barrett. It's pronounced Bare- Ett by the by.
  • Coffee. I love coffee normally, but it just tastes better on rainy days
  • My Skin. Normally I hate it, but rain clears it up. Last night I looked horrid and yesterday was hot and icky. Today It's overcast, cool, and gloomy and my skin is smooth and clear and perfect. I blame my Norwegian/English/German/Czech/Eskimoe heritage.
  • Tea. I am not much of a tea drinker, though I have tried. I find it's flavour to be slightly bitter and I don't like how sugar tastes in tea. However I really do enjoy a cup of tea when it rains.
  • Books. There is nothing better than reading while it rains.
  • Fireplaces. When we lived downtown and had a real fireplace, the rain would drip into the fire and make it sizzle sometimes. That was my favourite.
  • Daydreaming. It's just better in the rain.
  • Walks. I know, I'm crazy, but no one else is ever out and there's a really nice stillness that falls over everything.
  • Coats. I love coats. It's nice to be able to use mine.
I've got nothing else to say. Lots on my mind, lots to do, so glad it's Friday.
One year 20 days.

June 4, 2009

The picture is bad, but this is the most beautiful coat ever. It was on sale at Macy's. For $95. I didn't buy it, but by golly I wanted to. The colour is actually much deeper red and the buttons have anchors on them. Seriously loved this coat more than I should. I found it while walking back to my car from taking that H&M dress back. I think I'm going to watch this coat and see if it goes any cheaper. I'd buy it for $30, but not much more than that. And yes I do know I'm cheep.

So Tuesday I went shopping with my mom, who wore a black vintage inspired shift and heeled sandals, Delaney, who was dressed like a 14 year old girl who was interested in fashion (heeled Mary Jane's, leggings, a silver shimmery skirt, t-shirt with tank top over it and a little shrug over that), Fraser, who wears the same thing everyday, and Grace who was in a dress and sandals. We all dress like this everyday. It's not that we got "dressed up" to go shopping, we always do this. Even when at home all of us try to wear something nice, just in case. I mean ya never know who could show up at your door. So anyways, we were walking in Costco, and one of those samplings people started going on about Gracie's red hair, we all smiled, Grace said thank you, and started to walk away. Then the Lady yelled at me (no joke, yelled) "So did you go to a graduation?" I turned, smiled, and replied that no we didn't. She stared at me like I'd just told her four plus four was green. "So why you all dressed like that?" Delaney stared at her like she had just told her six plus six was ice cream. "Cuz we are. We always dress like this." Then we walked away and the lady kept staring. Everywhere we went people made comments or stared after us, and while at first it was amusing, it began to get annoying

Now I get alot of stares. I'm fine with this. It's Riverside, I'm just too cool for this town (I'm half joking of course). But sometimes I don't understand people. They can be so rude about it! I mean I don't stare at people who are dressed up, or dressed down. I make mental notes, and if I feel so inclined, I compliment them. So I don't really understand this idea of going on about people who choose not to go out in sweats to run errands. Frankly I feel better about myself when I put the effort into making myself look nice. It's not because I feel I need to, but because I want to. I've decided that the next time I'm out and someone asks me why I am dressed the way I'm dressed I'm going to say "well are you going to the dump?" and when they answer no, I'm going to say, "then I guess we both don't dress appropriately for what we're doing." That sounds mean I know, but I'm kinda tired of this. People used to go out caring about what they looked like. I mean sure I understand people who need to pop out and are wearing something that isn't nice. It happens, and I surely don't expect anyone who's been working outside in dirt and mud to shower and apply makeup before going to Home Depot, but it seems to me, that if you happen to be wearing a dress and heels and run in to Home Depot, why do people have to stare and make comments? I'm not sure when it was the people stopped caring about how they looked when going out. It's not being vain, it's not being self centered. It's good grooming. Despite what the world wants us all to think we do judge people based on their attire, so why do we present ourselves as frumpy dumpy slobs? I should be able to walk into a grocery store in a nice outfit without being made into a side show freak. I've had to learn to train myself into thinking that they are staring because they think it's cool, but I've received alot of negative comments about the way I dress. Once I was in Stater Bros (a grocery store), and this lady who was probably in her thirties was on the same isle with me and she complimented my outfit and I said thank you and she asked where I was going out. I told her nowhere, and she asked if I dressed like this everyday, and I smiled and said "well I try!" and laughed and she got all snippy with me and went off on how it was rude to go out dressed fancy when other people don't have the time to dress so fancy. I'm sure she was probably just PMSing but I was still annoyed. Yes she could dress "fancy" if she wanted to. If it was important to her, I'm sure she could squeeze the time in. It takes me 45mins to pin curl my hair. It only takes about five to rag curl my hair. It takes two mins. to do my cheaters pin curls, and it take five mins in the morning to put in hot rollers. It's important to me so I get up early, it's important to me, so I've figured out ways to cut corners and still get the same effect. I pick out my outfits the night before so if I do get up late all I have to do it throw on clothes. I don't do this to impress anyone, but because I like the way I look when I do it. I want to present myself to the world as someone who cares about their appearance and how they are presenting themselves. Sure I do it in a different way. I wear more vintage things, do odd combinations, am a little old fashioned, but I don't walk around looking like a clown, or a slob.
Granted I do get alot of wonderful compliments, or have just learned to take certain phrases as compliments, because honestly regardless of whether anyone else likes it I'm just going to continue dressing how I want to. But it's very annoying to have to justify myself to people, just because I wore a pair of heels.

This isn't meant to sound like a rant, just a comment on how strange and sometimes rude people can be because they don't appreciate other's style.
My advice and motto is this: Dress in a way that you like. Wear what makes you feel comfortable, beautiful, confident, happy, and attractive. Because if you wear things that make you feel like that, you will be. And try to ignore rude and bitter people.
Edit: Oopse... I forgot to say Oney year and 21 days. One year and 21 days.

June 3, 2009


Hat: Thrifted
Coat: Thrifted
Dress: Old Navy Hand me down from my mom
Shoes: Old Navy
Beaming Smile Courtesy of RAIN!
Creepy Guy who couldn't figure out why I was taking a picture of myself from the back of my dad's car courtesy of DCSS(Department of Child Support Services).

It's raining! In June!! In Southern California!!! Not just raining either, full on thunder and lighting storm with big globs of rain!!!! I wore a RAINCOAT!!!!! IN JUNE!!!!!!

Needless to say, I'm pretty happy about this.
I'm sitting in my office with a big wide smile listening to the sounds of thunder cracking and rolling, thinking about how I have no rain appropriate shoes though I have 40 pairs of shoes (and I'm not joking about that) and this must be fixed before I move in one year and 22 days (I wasn't joking about counting down).

This morning I woke up early even though I went to bed late. It was overcast, but not more than normal June Gloom overcast. My pin curls dropped from my head gracefully this morning and brushed out perfectly. My skin was crystal clear, soft, and in no need of makeup at all.
I thought: "Huh, this is weird, good day."
Then I went down stairs and made myself breakfast.
Two minutes into cooking my eggs, I turned around to see rain coming down into the pool.
I squealed.
"Holy Crap! It's raining!" I yelled at Bri, who was putting on makeup.
I walked outside and just stood there feeling the wonderful coolness on my face. I forgot my eggs.
They didn't burn.


And it's Chipotle Wednesday.

Best. Day. Ever.

I had something else very important to blog about, but rain supersedes everything else.
*Le sigh*
(which as we all know is much more amazing than just a boring old *sigh*)
If you need me today, I'll be outside in the rain.
It's pretty wonderful how magical rain is....

June 2, 2009

Uh, hi. I'm not funny today.

Hair bows: H&M
Shades: Forever21
Dress: ME!
Shoes: Target

I made this dress. It's my own pattern. My mother likes to go on about the length, but I'm choosing to ignore that. It's not perfect, but I'm choosing to ignore that. The fabric (which we think is chintz ) has a bit of a mystery to it. Back two years ago when I decided that I wanted to start sewing for real, I grabbed a bolt of this pink stuff and some yellow sheer stuff intending to make a dress. They were in the garage. This was about the time my mom was working on costumes for a musical so I assumed they'd come from the guy who donated a bunch of bolts of fabric (he had some upholstery business). Needless to say I never made the dress. The bolts of fabric sat in my room for months. When I moved up stairs last summer I finally decided to go ahead and use them. There was only about two yards of fabric left of the pink stuff, so I figured I'd just fold that with my stash, and moved the bolt back out to the garage. So last week or so, my mom was talking about some sewing project I'd concocted and she said "oh that yellow stuff of yours would look really pretty with that." and I responded "what yellow stuff?" and she said "the yellow stuff in the garage on the bolt." and I said "that's yours left over from Honk." and she said, "no I never got that stuff from honk, you brought that home with you along with that pink stuff in your room." And I told her she was crazy because I didn't and had no clue where that stuff came from. Well turns out neither does she. We have no idea where this fabric came from, but it's pretty and looks good as my new dress. I might add some yellow sheer stuff underneath.

Off to go shopping with my mom and convince her to go to the mall so I can return and "what was I thinking" purchase that cost me 40$. It's not that I don't love the purchase, it's just highly impractical (think flapper fringe dress circa 1999 (I blame the fact that I've read nothing but F.Scott Fitzgerald for two months straight)). Every time I go to buy something I ask myself if I want this more than I want Portland, and 9 1/2 times out of ten I but it back. However this thing seemed to escape my logic and I just bought it. I'm just a little sad to take it back because first off it's a friggin flapper dress! and secondly because it fits really well and it's navy blue so it looks really good on me... C'est la vie.
p.s. I'm fairly sure that for the next year and 23 days I'm going to be posting a countdown like this. 1 year 23 days.

June 1, 2009

June Gloom (Inspiration Monday #12)

I made a decision to set a date and just do it. I'm not going back on my word, that's exciting. I'm not scared, but rather excited about it, that's exciting. I've got all kinds of plans, that are super exciting. So I picked a date:

June 25th 2010

I'm moving.

No more ugly smog,

No more Santa Ana winds,

No more blistering summers that start in January,

No more nine inches of rain a year,

No more California.

Sure I'll miss some things. Sure it'll be weird.

But I can't wait.

Why that date you ask?

Grace's birthday is the 23rd, and my Disneyland pass will run out on the 22nd. That give me two whole days to make a clean break. I know. Disneyland? Yes. Disneyland determined my moving date.

I get giddy goosebumps thinking about it.

One year and 24 days.

Let's do this thing.

That's what's inspiring me this week. How about you?