Friday, April 30, 2010

Gardenia

One of the ladies in the office brought me a gardenia blossom today from a bush at her house.  That single little flower that was already starting to brown around the edges filled my entire office with its lovely sent making the entire day better.  It was proof to me of how the beauty of nature can make every day richer.

If I had any gardening skills at all - I'd start planting gardenia bushes everywhere.

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Thursday, April 29, 2010

Smoked Out

One night last week I kept waking up and smelling smoke - I'd get up and look through the house but couldn't figure out what I could be smelling.  Still every little while I'd wake up and freak out a bit - and even when I was sleeping I kept having dreams with smoke in them.

It took a few days, but I finally figured out the source of my problem.  Seems I have a new neighbor downstairs who is a heavy smoker - and every time he/she smokes it stinks up my place.  I'm a bit bummed about it because I love having the windows open this time of year - but I can't stand to have them open if my place is going to get all smokey.

I know my neighbor has a right to smoke at their own house - I just wish I didn't have to live with their choice as well.

I love Iron & Wine - smokers not as much.

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Wednesday, April 28, 2010

One of Those Days

Yesterday was rough - one of those work days you wish you could live over - except you don't really want to go through that again unless there was a guarantee it would turn out differently.

I was very grateful to get home at the end of the night - and to know that Glee was going to be on -the first 50 minutes of the episode was a bit of a disappointment after last week's amazing Madonna episode.  But Mercedes' version of "Beautiful"  had me in tears.  I love this show.

While I was waiting for Glee to come on I listened to a little Joshua Radin - his mellow music was the perfect cure to my desire to chill out.

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Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Bargain Hunter

While I was running errands this weekend I decided to treat myself to a pedicure.  As I left the salon I noticed a consignment shop next door.  Since I needed a new pair of jeans and was feeling cheap, I thought I'd take a look.  I left the store an hour and a big bag of clothes later.

This was my first experience consignment shopping but I don't think it will be my last.  For $150 I came home with:

  • A pair of Michael Kors Jeans
  • A wrap dress
  • A cute blue dress
  • A shirt I tried on in Macy's a few months ago (with the tags still attached)
  • A pair of Ann Taylor slacks
  • A Michale Kors shirt
  • A pair of shoes
Have you ever bought clothes in a consignment shop?  Any favorite shops or tips on how to find the best stuff?

In honor of my two cute new dresses here is a little Rosie Thomas - love her.

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Monday, April 26, 2010

Horse Country


I've been in horse country for a while now, so it seems I am way overdue sharing a few photos of the rolling fields of bluegrass.  My first couple of months here were more snowy than anything so this weekend when I had the opportunity to spend some time at the horse park for an event I took my camera along.

Natasha Bedingfield is one of my favorites - I've had some days lately where I've wanted to get out of the structure of life and just run and feel free, this song is the perfect fit for that feeling.

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Sunday, April 25, 2010

Kentucky Rain

Its rained on and off all weekend here in Lexington, but tonight as I settled in with a book it started coming down hard.  I had the windows open and the sound and smell of the rain was beautiful.  Soon I found myself thinking about all of the great songs that have been written about rain, I have a ton in my collection alone so I started making a mix so I could listen to songs about rain at work tomorrow.

I'm going to share - even though it means exposing some of the more embarrassing aspects of my music collection.  There are songs from every genre represented, some recent songs and some that I remember my parents playing when I was just little.  Some things haven't changed in the last 30 years - artists are still finding inspiration in the beauty of the rain.

The title of this post comes from the most appropriate song in my collection, Elvis' "Kentucky Rain"

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Friday, April 23, 2010

Little Personalities

I mentioned earlier this week that I spent the weekend in Utah celebrating my nephew's first birthday.  I haven't posted photos because I gave my sister first dibs for her blog (she informed me upon my arrival that I was the official photog - I'm still learning, but in this case I made up for quality with quantity.)

I don't think those photos made her blog - but they just scream personality so I thought I'd make sure they got a public viewing.

Maybe I was born to hold you in my arms.

The Swell Season - "In These Arms"

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Thursday, April 22, 2010

A Little Ray

Thanks to Katie who posted a note about a David Gray and Ray LaMontagne show at Red Rocks this summer, both artists have been on heavy rotation on my iPod - needless to say its been a good few days.  I thought I'd share a little of the love, so here is one of my favorite's, Ray LaMontagne's "Let it Be Me."  Not only is the song amazing, the lyrics are incredible - who doesn't want a guy like this?

There may come a time
A time in everyone's life
Where nothing seems to go your way
Where nothing seems to turn our right

There may come a time
You just can't seem to find your way
For every door you walk on to
Seems like they get slammed in your face

That's when you need someone
Someone that you can call
And when all your faith is gone
Feels like you can't go on
Let it be me
Let it be me
If it's a friend that you need
Let it be me
Let it be me

Feels like your always comin' on home
Pockets full of nothing and you got no cash
No matter where  you turn, you ain't got no place to stand
Reach out for something and they slap your hand

Now I remember all to well
Just how it feels to be all alone
You feel like you'd give anything
For just a little place you can call your own

That's when you need someone
Someone that you can call
And when all your faith is gone
Feels like you can't go on
Let it be me
Let it be me
If it's a friend that you need
Let it be me
Let it be me




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Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Gleeful

Last week I shared my love of Madonna - so imagine my joy when one of my favorite shows, Glee, devoted an entire episode to Madonna songs.  It was amazing!  Don't ask me to pick a favorite song - I loved them all from Sue Sylvester's version of "Vogue" to the entire cast doing "Like a Prayer."  But I can't resist posting "What it Feels Like for a Girl" this may not be one of Madonna's biggest hits, but lyrically it is brilliant.

Girls can wear jeans
And cut their hair short
Wear shirts and boots
'Cause its okay to be a boy
But for a boy to look like a girl is degrading
'Cause you think that being a girl is degrading
But secretly you'd love to know what its like
Wouldn't you
What it feels like for a girl




If you want to see the actual clip from the show it is still up on Fox on Demand. Pin It

Comparisons

One of the benefits of working in an office back in the US?  Internet connections capable of streaming Pandora during the day.  Today a great version of "Such Great Heights" came on.  I've always loved this song, and have spent a great deal of time thinking about one line:  "Everything looks perfect from far away."

How often do we (and by we I really me me) look at someone and think they have it so good, when in reality everyone has a set of problems and challenges in life.  I constantly struggle to avoid comparing myself to anyone else because doing so never makes me happy.  If this is a struggle you share, you must check out an amazing article from Elizabeth Gilbert (author of Eat, Pray Love) in O Magazine.  I read it today and have been back to re-read it at least 3 times.  One particular section keeps coming back to me:

Blow it all catastrophically, in fact, and then start over with good cheer. This is what we all must learn to do, for this is how maps get charted—by taking wrong turns that lead to surprising passageways that open into spectacularly unexpected new worlds. So just march on.





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Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Chasing Bubbles


Unbeknownst to me, my family had hatched a plot to win $25,000 dollars in a home video contest using my dog, Sadie.  She goes a bit crazy chasing bubbles.  The plan was to bring her to the birthday party and set up the kid's bubble machine and watch her go.  They decided since I wouldn't be around they wouldn't need to share any winning with me - my surprise visit made sure I'll get my cut if we are every lucky enough to win, and while I don't think we'll win 25 grand on this video - at least we wore her out.

We'll have to give it another go when she isn't also distracted by a party.

Fell in love with this Patty Griffin song - perfect after a weekend spent with my amazing family.

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Monday, April 19, 2010

Frequent Flyer

In the past two weeks I've flown 17,500 miles, been in 9 different airports, survived 6 layovers and gone through customs/immigration 7 times.  While two of the trips have been personal travel I'm still ready to stay in one place for a while.

However, the last trip was totally worth the mad dash through O'Hare in Chicago as I rushed to make my 30 minute connection - because I got to surprise my family by showing up to celebrate Tiny T's first birthday.  While he may be to young to understand I came home to celebrate with him, it was enough for me to know that he and his big sister still recognized me enough to give me a little love.  I'd gladly fly across the country any day for their sweet kisses.


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Friday, April 16, 2010

The Wisdom of Madonna

I grew up in the golden age of Madonna - and even when she is at her most shocking, I can't help but loving and admiring her.  She's smart, creative and oh, so talented (just ignore the scary looking arms.)

For years, I bought every album she put out on the week it was released, and I'd find myself going back to her songs over and over again when I was happy, sad or just wanted to dance.  I somehow missed out on her most recent release (I'll blame it on my travels) but I recently heard "Jump" and fell a bit in love with the lyrics:

There's only so much you can learn in one place
The more that I wait, the more time that I waste
I haven't got much time to waste


I've certainly taken these lines to heart and incorporated them in my life.  Since I left home at 18 I haven't stayed in one place longer than 4 years - and that was only once, most places I've lingered less than 2 years.  I've enjoyed myself, met tons of amazing people and learned a lot along the way.



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Thursday, April 15, 2010

My Ride

When I stopped at the rental counter on Saturday evening, the guy working the booth asked me if I had any preferences.  I told him I just didn't want anything "cute-sie."  Somehow I think we have different ideas of what constitutes a cute car - because this candy apple red one certainly qualifies.  I guess the good thing about spending a lot of time with a rental car is getting to try out different models, but I don't think I'll keep this one long.


Snow Patrol - Chasing Cars

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Wednesday, April 14, 2010

More Love


John Mayer.  I loved his first two albums, thought he was a genius who wrote the songs that defined me.  Then he became something of a (I'll be polite here) jerk.  He's still talented but his music didn't appeal to me as much - and that may partly be because of the general perception I had of him.  When his most recent album came out it never even crossed my mind to pick it up.  Monday as I drove to work I recognized his voice on the radio singing "Heartbreak Warfare."  The song reminded me of some of his early work so I turned up the volume.


When he got to the chorus:

If you want more love,
Why don't you say so
Just say so


I suddenly remembered why I loved his early stuff and had a bit of an epiphany.  My independent soul has a tendency to insist that I don't need anyone else to make me complete but I can't help but wonder, does that line of thinking keep me from opening myself up to the possibility of love?  I think it may, so my new resolution is to follow Mr. Mayer's advice and become better at admitting and asking for love in my life. 



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Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Shopping Heaven

I wandered into the most wonderful shop in Thailand - if I could have figured out how to get some of this stuff home I would have spent a fortune.  Owning that bed would be a dream come true.


This week's new discovery is Katie Herzig:

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Monday, April 12, 2010

Laundry

I am back in Lexington after a long weekend spent packing, traveling and unpacking.  One of the first things I did when I got to the apartment is start washing every piece of clothing I took with me.  My great laundry project reminded me of a couple of photos I snapped in Delhi during this visit.


Both of these outdoor ironing stands are in my neighborhood just blocks apart.  I haven't been brave enough to take my ironing to them even though it is super cheap.  I just can't see how my clean clothes would stay clean if they were being ironed outdoors in Delhi.

As I skimmed through the radio stations trying to find something to keep me awake on my drive from Louisville Saturday night, this song came on several times - and now it is firmly stuck in my head.

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Friday, April 9, 2010

Straight Line to Lexington

I'm packing a suitcase again - I keep thinking that as often as I do this I'd have some sort of special system worked out so it wouldn't take so long, or I wouldn't dread it so much.  But no matter how much I travel, I hate packing.


In a few hours I'll be saying goodbye to my second to last visit to Delhi (for the foreseeable future at least.) This trip is a little different because instead of heading home, I'm headed straight to Lexington.  Back to that little apartment that was just starting to feel like home.  

I'm looking forward to spring in Kentucky - can't wait to see the grass turning green.  To explore some of the surrounding towns and to catch up with some new friends.

While I finish packing, take a listen to one of my favorite new artists - she's from Kentucky - and a new discovery thanks to Cindy, a fellow blogger who is a talented photographer and has great taste in music.

Dawn Landes - Straight Lines
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Thursday, April 8, 2010

Thai Food

Do you like the way I've stretched two days of holiday into a week worth of posts?  What can I say, it was a great trip - I relaxed, saw a few sights, had time to think and ate AMAZING food.  



Most of my meals were simply fruit - breakfast and lunch each day was some sort of fruit salad.  It was heaven - fresh mango, papaya, pineapple, bananas, melons!

On my last night I decided I needed to branch out and add a little protein to the mix, so I ask the hotel to recommend a good place they would go for traditional Thai.  They sent me to a little hole in the wall place, and the food was amazing.  I only wish I could have gone back a few more times.  Yum!

There was plenty of sunshine in Thailand - as my now darker freckles can attest (but no sunburn thanks to an airport purchase of SPF 50) - this song has been in my head for days after hearing it at the hotel.  It is one of my all time favorites.

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Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Faces of Thailand




One of the things I enjoyed most about my short visit in Thailand was how genuinely friendly everyone was.  I felt like an honored guest wherever I went.  People went out of their way to smile and make me feel welcome.  Here are just a few of the faces I managed to grab shots of along the way.

I like Coldplay - but I'd put them aside because, to me, the songs all started to sound the same.  When I found this mix of "God Put a Smile Upon Your Face" I was pleasantly surprised - enough to put them back into rotation again.

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Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Temples of Chiang Mai

During my very short trip I must have seem dozens of temples in and around Chiang Mai.  They come in all shapes, sizes, materials, age and condition.  I took hundreds of photos while exploring the temples and since I was also exploring the various settings on my camera there are many more poor photos than good ones.  Some day I'm going to set aside some real time to understand my camera and photography - until then I'll just rely on beautiful subjects to make my photos look good - and Chiang Mai was a great source for that.



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