Sunday, February 27, 2011

Lulu cracks me up! - Part 2

I was finally able to get a video of Lulu reacting to Kitty on the balcony. 
So funny!  Enjoy!

Saturday, February 26, 2011

They Say It's My Birthday...

So yesterday was my birthday.  I am now 34.  As Jeannine said, welcome to the mid-thirties.  Fun.  It's actually quite depressing.  I'm beginning to feel old.  Although I thankfully don't have too many wrinkles yet, I think I'm getting arthritis in my hands.  I don't recover from a night of drinking like I used to.  I'm definitely not where I thought I would be with my life or my career, i.e. I'm not married, I don't have kids, I'm not as successful as I want to be.  Blah blah blah.

But then I decided that I don't want this post to be about all that yucky stuff.  I decided to remember past birthday's that were a ton of fun!  Let's start with the most recent first.

This was my 30th Birthday.  I threw myself a big party at one of my favorite places - Dazzle.  YUMMY martinis.  It was so much fun!  Most of my family and friends were there.  My sister came in from Portland, Jen came up from Austin, and Bridget was here from Albuquerque.  This is exactly what a monumental birthday party should be.

I don't know what birthday this was, but I was working for US Home/Lennar at the time and I worked with a wonderful bunch of women.  It was tradition to wear this fuzzy tiara all day on your birthday.  Everybody in the office would wish you a happy birthday.  It was great fun.

This is obviously my 21st Birthday.  It was tradition in our sorority to wear this hat out to all the bars, all night long, on your 21st.  You get ALOT of attention, which basically means free drinks.  And drinking we did!  Thankfully, I had Kate and Zach to watch out for me and take care of me.  And I needed it. :)

There are many more memorable birthdays, but I think the pictures are at my parent's house.  Like the birthday that my mom spelled my name wrong on my cake.  Really.  And one of my first birthday parties when we moved back to Denver.  One of the girls got stuck in a trunk in the basement.  And I wore a sparkly pink sweater dress.  I was so stylin'! 

Ahhh.... now wasn't walking down memory lane much more fun than being sad about what I don't have on this birthday?

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Update - Interior Design Bill

Woo Hoo!  The crappy bill that ASID was trying to get passed that would "regulate" Interior Designers has been voted down!  It is a sure bet that they will attempt to pass a slightly revised bill in a year or so, but if it doesn't change much I don't see how it will ever be a success.  I'll keep my fellow designers informed.

Monday, February 21, 2011

The Great Lightbulb Debate: Incandescent vs. Compact Fluorescent

Let me say upfront that I am seriously not a fan of the CFL, so this is going to be a biased blog.  (But all the facts are true!  I promise!)

In 2007 Congress voted that the United States would phase out the incandescent light bulb in favor of the more energy efficient CFL.  Some in Congress today want to repeal the mandate.  They want to give us the freedom of choice.  Yay for them! 

Pros for CFL's:
  • Uses 75% less energy than incandescent bulbs.
Cons for CFL's:
  • They contain trace amounts of mercury.  The amount is not large enough to pose a hazard to users, but it does become a concern at landfills where the mercury from many bulbs can escape and contribute to air and water pollution.
  • There are very specific clean-up and disposal instructions for if you break a CFL bulb in your home.
  • Color rendition is bad and inaccurate.  When manufacturers "fix" this problem by mixing phosphors (I won't get into all the technical mumbo jumbo about what this is), this causes a loss of efficiency and increases the cost of the bulb.  Personal note - these bulbs are especially bad in the bathroom and putting on your make-up, where correct color is a must!
  • They hum or buzz, which is especially noticeable in a quiet room.  And the buzz becomes louder when they are "dying", which can take months.
  • They take 30 seconds to achieve full brightness.
  • When used outdoors and in cold weather the time it takes to achieve full brightness might take a few minutes or the bulb might not turn on at all.
  • They are larger than traditional light bulbs, so even though the socket will fit, the bulb itself may not fit in the light cover or lamp shade or with the existing harp (the thing that holds the lamp shade up).
  • One really big con is that the US is losing manufacturing jobs with the closing of incandescent plants.  In this economy we should be finding ways to keep or add jobs in the US, not cut them.

GE has already shut down incandescent bulb manufacturing plants and plan to completely phase out these bulbs next year.  EEEK!  I've gotta get a stock pile started!  Cause I am not going to use crappy CFL's.

**Please also read this update post about the light bulb ban.**

Saturday, February 19, 2011

Personal Space in the Work Place

This week I had to take a break from my boss before I went crazy, so I took Thursday off.  I get back to work on Friday and things look....different.  My desk and the area around my desk have definitely been "worked over".  Huh.  I put my coat away in the supply closet and realize that it's all been rearranged in there as well.  Okay.  That's fine.  I haven't had enough time to really make the closet be what I want it to be since we moved our office.
But, why?  There are probably 100 other things much more pressing and important that my boss could have done while I was gone. 

The the boss gets in the office and feels the need to re-introduce me to my space.

Boss - "This file is full of vendors." 
Me - "Wasn't it vendors before?"
Boss - "Well, yes."  "This box is envelopes."
Me - "Yes, it was envelopes before."

He has helpfully moved the envelope box to the top shelf where it's really not convenient to get to.  I mention that I will probably move it back to where it was before because it was easier to access and it makes sense for supplies to be next to supplies.  He seems to take this as a personal attack against his organizing skills.

Boss - "Why do you need to get in the envelope box?  Aren't there envelopes on your desk?"
I look at my desk where there were envelopes on Wednesday.
Me - "Well, there were envelopes here Wednesday.  I don't know where they are now."
He doesn't know where he moved them to.  Really?

Then he proceeds to show me how he's rearranged MY DESK.  He's re-done my files, moved things around in my drawers, and added some things.  Why?  It's MY DESK!  Things are where I want them to me.  Where I know to look for them.  Where they are convenient for me - the person who uses the desk.  I realize that this is his business and technically his furnishings, but this is my domain, my personal space.  I do not keep things  in my desk that are extremely private, but everybody needs to have a sense of personal space in their work place.  Right?

Thanks for letting me vent.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Lulu cracks me up!

Lulu is a strange dog.  She doesn't really like many other dogs, mainly just tolerates them.  But she LOVES cats.  They just don't love her back.  I don't think she'd ever hurt them, just exuberently say hi to them.  She doesn't understand that cats have been hard-wired to fear dogs.  Case in point - the cat from downstairs, Kitty.  (Yes, that's really her name.  Those stoner college boys are really original.)  Kitty freezes whenever Lulu comes near her.  Like she blends into the grass or something.  But lately Kitty has been coming onto our balcony to hang out.  I have no idea how she gets up here.  This morning (the first time I noticed this) I put Lulu in the bedroom, let Kitty in and took her downstairs.  A few hours later she was here again!  Lulu was beside herself!  She was trying so hard to get to Kitty through the door.  And barking like crazy!  HI!  NOTICE ME!  PAY ATTENTION TO ME!  I wasn't quick enough to get it on video, but I did get a picture.

I was seriously cracking up.  I don't think Lulu appreciated my laughter.  She stopped barking to stare at me like I hurt her feelers.  Funny dog. :)

P.S. Kitty somehow got down on her own this time.  Michelle thinks she's a special wall climbing cat.

Sunday, February 13, 2011

What I'm Reading

As many people know, I read a wide variety of books.  I like your standard chick lit, some paranormal-sci-fi-ish books, romance, mystery, and lately I've gotten into some YA.  For those who don't know what that is, it's Young Adult.  I know, I'm almost 34 years old.  Why am I reading YA books?  Because they're good!  Although usually incredibly easy reading for me, these are great stories told by great authors, some of whom write for adults as well.

Amazon recently recommended this book to me because of some of the other YA books I've read.  Matched by Ally Condie.  It is the first in what will be a trilogy (as it seems most YA books are lately).  It is set in a future society where everything is simplified for the population.  What that means is that all decisions are made for the characters.  The government determines where they live, their jobs, their matches (who they marry), when they have children, and even when they die.  The government has also simplified the world around them.  It has saved only 100 songs, 100 poems, 100 pieces of art, 100 history lessons, etc. for the population to learn.  Each person wears the some clothes, eats the same food at the same time, participates in the same few leisure activities.
It's a VERY different world from ours and it makes you really think about how wonderful life is when you can choose your own life and your future and who you love.  It also makes you think about how much superfluous stuff we surround ourselves with.  I'm sure we could all benefit from a little mucking-out. 
I can't wait for the next book in the series to see what happens to Cassia, Ky, and Xander.  I have to wait until November!  But there are MANY other wonderful books out there to read until then.  :)

Sunday, February 6, 2011

White Jeans in Winter? Absolutely!

I have recently had an obsession with white jeans.  I don't know why exactly.  I've stayed away from them for many years because of their unflattering reputation.  But lately they have been everywhere!  They look classic, clean, refined, simple.  And I wanted them!  So I bought a pair - and I love them!  I couldn't wait to wear them.  But it's winter!  I've been one of those people who wouldn't wear white, well not exactly after Labor Day, but definitely not in the winter.  But then I saw a style program where they advocated for white jeans in winter.  Yay!  Here are some of their tips for making white jeans in winter work:

  • Go up a size in white pants so that they don't show every flaw.
  • Nothing is more chic than white jeans with a chunky cozy sweater or a blazer and leather boots.
  • Absolutely classic and a little like Jackie-O - a black turtleneck, white jeans, and animal print ballet flats.
  • Wear white jeans with tonal solid-color pieces, especially camel and oatmeal.

Here are the white jeans I bought and I do love the look here.

But, beware!  The navy-and-white combination screams spring!

In fact, I want this sweater, but definitely for spring!

I hope that I see more people brave enough to wear white jeans in winter.  I know I will now that I have some cute and flattering outfit options!

See another look here!