Thursday, April 22, 2010

Hello Old Friend, It's Been Too Long

Being the daughter of intelligent and awesome people I grew up listening to NPR on the radio.  "Fresh Air with Terry Gross", "All Things Considered", and occasionally "Car Talk" were all programs whose sound I easily recognized and could listen to, even if the content was usually way over my head.  I still know that NPR is fantastic radio but I haven't been able to actually find it in either of the cars I drive now.  (You can't actually read the numbers on one of the cars, so that makes it rather difficult.)  But my problem has been solved!

I am the proud and addicted owner of the amazing Droid Eris, which I maintain is an iPhone with a much cheaper app library, and way better cell reception.  There is an NPR app for the Droid which allows you to see the programs that have aired, including blurbs about their content, and then you can listen straight away or add it to a playlist for listening to later.  Seriously, it's perfect.  As I was driving home from my internship at a non-profit the other day I saw an article called "Non-profits Find Social Media Presents New Challenges", ironically this was the topic of the meeting I had just been in.  As I made my way through traffic on the 405 I listened to the article, and felt more informed on the topic.  Today I sifted through the "All Songs Considered" program and added a bunch to my playlist, so as I played video games and did stuff around the house I got to listen to some awesome new music from various bands, as well as a cool program were Jonsi played DJ and had some Iron Maiden, Billie Holiday, Audrey Hepburn and Django Reinhardt.

So if you have a Droid you should DEFINITELY download the NPR app for listening to on the go, but I believe you can listen to all the programs on, so head there for a good time.

Thursday, April 15, 2010

Read: Reading Lolita In Tehran

Reading Lolita in Tehran: A Memoir in Books is by Azar Nafisi, who worked as a professor and writer in Tehran.  Here are a few images that I found online that I feel really set the scene for the book:

       The books is set in Tehran, and is broken up into 4 section: Lolita, Gatsby, James, and Austen, if that gives you some idea of the literature covered in the book.  (You may have noticed I did another Read Review of Lolita some time back, I decided to read Lolita before Reading Lolita in Tehran, and I'm glad I did, though it is by no means required.)  I really enjoyed Reading Lolita In Tehran because I didn't know a lot about Iranian history, or the fact that before the shah Iran was more liberal and open, it's only in recent years that it's become so oppressive.  The book covers a lot of the current history of Tehran, like the siege of the US embassy, the bombings of Tehran, the political power struggles, etc, as well as personal history like girls being jailed or arrested on the side of the street for wearing nail polish or having a strand of hair sticking out from under their head scarf.  It gives you an honest idea of what living there, as a girl, is like.
      The book was also right up my alley because it's all focused around a book club and reading, which I'm sure you've figured out now, I love.  The book was a bit difficult to get through at times, I found I could rarely read more than 25 pages in one sitting.  I'm not sure if I was getting bored or found some of the topics a bit too intense.  All in all I was glad I read the book.

       If you've read this post and want to read the book for yourself just leave a comment and I'll send you my copy of the book!  Make sure your comment has some sort of link to your email so I can contact you for an address.  I'm moving to another continent in July and need to seriously start purging my library.  Just for the record I bought the book used at a street sale so it's no where near "new" in condition, but isn't that part of what makes books great?  Wondering about their previous owners....  Ok maybe that's just me.

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

Photography: Get Back In Your Book

This is probably the coolest Flickr set I've seen in awhile. It's by Lissy Elle, who is super talented, so you should check out their other stuff. This set is entitled Get Back In Your Book and as you can see from the pictures below it shows people from books literally coming out of the book.  Of course my favorite is the Harry Potter one, but they're all awesome.  And it incorporates reading, so I'm always a fan.

Harry Potter

Sleeping Beauty

Alice in Wonderland

Peter Pan
Enjoy. :) And happy Wednesday!

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Wedding: Gorgeous Nature-y Napa

I saw this beautiful wedding on the blog Style Me Pretty. She has two posts on this wedding here and here, take a look! The wedding was held in Napa Valley in close-to-my-heart Northern California, and had an excellent balance of outdoorsiness as well as classic beauty. The pictures below seriously do not do the wedding justice (I can't make them any bigger, huge bummer), so be sure to check out the links above for the real deal.

(all the pictures are from Style Me Pretty)
I love that picture in this last grouping where he's kissing her on the forehead afterwords. So adorable.

Have a good night. :)

Friday, April 2, 2010

Inspirational Photo Friday: Easter

I'm up in Northern California for Easter, so here are some pictures to get in the spirit!
I've always loved eggs that look like this! From weheartit.
My silver nest necklace!

Cutest coats ever!  From weheartit

Adorabley decorated eggs!  Picture from weheartit.

Cute little hand puppets!  Picture from weheartit, originally an etsy thing that I can't find on etsy anymore!

Dying eggs!  from weheartit
These Handblown Nest Bell Jars from William Sonoma

Thursday, April 1, 2010

Hodge Podge of Stuff!

I've had a lovely few days off. First there was Santa Barbara, and then there was staying with the lovely Paris girls in San Diego. A very great time was had by all. Here are two pictures from the hike we did:

This is Tangerine Falls!

This is a bit of a modge podge entry, just a bunch of stuff I wanted to share. Here's a video that shows the creepy similarities in drawing and movement of some Disney movies, suggesting that they just reused the basics and drew over things I think. It's interesting to watch, and that french song is awesome, I wonder what it is!

I'm a big fan of this concept for eco-friendly packaging for Coke.  You can read all about the project here on the Packaging World Blog.  It's a design project by a gentleman, and not actually being implemented by Coke (unfortunately).  I'm actually doing a project on Coke right now and one of my suggestions for opportunities they could pursue was being more eco-friendly.

And one more amazing pic to share with you:
That picture is simply beautiful! I love the teal/pale aquamarine vases, and the wood table... I just want it in my house!  As well as a well lit window with white curtains like the one in the picture, I could go for that for sure.  But this image was found on the adorable Tumblr called "Elizabethtown" which has some great little findings, and has a special place in my heart now because of Elizabeths penchant for all things Harry Potter.  (You should check out her Hogwarts houses polyvore post, super cute.)

Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Read: Franny and Zooey

Franny and Zooey is J.D. Salinger's third book, published in 1961 but set in 1955. The book focuses on two of the Glass children, Franny and Zooey. Franny is 20 years old and undergoing a breakdown fueled by spiritual unsureness, while Zooey is 25 and jaded beyond belief. All of the Glass children were radio stars in their youth, with Zooey being especially charismatic, which may have lead to his future career as an actor. Due to their unique education by their older siblings, both Zooey and Franny have issues socializing and view most other people as benighted.
Below are a few pictures, some capture the essence of the main characters and others artistically show things from the book.

Franny to a tee! via The Thinking Tank.

Epitome of Zooey via The Thinking Tank.
Franny via Culturazzi.
Franny Asleep, infamous Zooey quote via BookRule.
I really enjoyed the book.  It's not a plot driven story, more conversational and cerebral, which could be slightly dry at times, but the characters and dialogue were interesting. It's the story of a spiritual journey, but also relationships with family members.  Here are my two favorite quotes:
"An artist's only concern is to shoot for some kind of perfection, and on his own terms, not anyone else's."

"It's everybody, I mean. Everything everybody does is so--I don't know--not wrong, or even mean, or even stupid, necessarily. But just so tiny and meaningless--and sad-making. And the worst part is, if you go bohemian or something crazy like that, you're conforming just as much as everybody else, only in a different way." The book made me want to be super well read, smoke like a pro, and dress like a Royal Tenenbaum.  I highly recommend the book. 
The book made me want to be super well read, smoke like a pro, and dress like a Royal Tenenbaum.  I highly recommend the book.

Monday, March 29, 2010

Paris, Je T'Aime

I'm off to spend 4 glorious days with 3 other lovely ladies who I haven't seen since we parted ways at our apartment at 22 Rue Lomblardi, Paris.
Ahh, Je manque cette appartement and ca ville. Et aussi, je mangue l'abilite de parle francais, parce que je suis tres mauvais maintenant.

Vintage Book Computer Case

Like the new template? Blogger in Draft has a great new template maker, which I believe makes it look much more professional. You can actually edit all the colors. This template originally had a cream background and the accent color was olive green, and I changed it to pale blue with a few darker blue low lights.

I saw this FABULOUS laptop case through a blog (cup of jo perhaps? I never remember...). It's a hardcase so it protects the computer really well, and is extremely well disguised as a cool old book, so if you leave it in your car for a few minutes it doesn't instantly say "I'm worth over $1,500!!". They run for about $80 for the laptop my size, so I'll be holding off on this purchase for a long long time, but it goes on my "wish list" for now!

I just got back from a fantastic 4 days in Santa Barbara with my boyfriend, going to a fun bar, watching the original Star Trek movies, hanging out with hilarious and intelligent SB people, eating amazing breakfast burritos, and doing an awesome hike.
I'm looking forward to seeing some amazing girls who I haven't seen since our Paris Ete 2007!

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Recipe: Banana and Chocolate Chip Upside Down Cake

So I've made this recipe TWICE in the last week, and let me tell you, it's a big hit.
Here's what you need to know:
* It's bananas and chocolate, the best combo in the world (tied with strawberries and chocolate of course).
* It's low fat!

It's called Banana and Chocolate Chip Upside Down Cake and it was created by David Lebovitz, and that link is to his amazing blog. He lives in Paris, which makes him extra cool.

The prep time takes awhile (or maybe I'm just really slow...), but I found it took about an hour to get it in the oven. And the first step about using either water or butter with the brown sugar? DEFINITELY use water!! I used butter the first and water the second, the first time was pretty much total fail, whereas the water actually made the brown sugar spread out and make this amazing melted sugar layer, it was perfect.
 (all pictures are from the blog of David Lebovitz)
You should most assuredly try this recipe at home, it is delish!
That's all for now, I have lots and lots of work and homework to do!

Monday, March 22, 2010

Photos of a Drive

I mentioned awhile ago that I would upload my pictures from when I drove up I-5 to attend jury duty. The drive was absolutely beautiful, it had rained the day before so the air was super clear, and it seriously looked like Middle Earth in parts of it. At one point there was a herd of cows meandering over to this pasture, I later saw sheep and even donkeys on the drive back! (I obviously passed horses in Gilroy area but by then it was too dark to see.) Either way it reminded me a bit of Scotland but with less sheep and an automatic vehicle. So nice. Unfortunately I didn't charge my camera battery for the drive down and it couldn't take any pictures. Although if you ever do the drive I recommend stopping at the Starbucks at Kettleman City, definitely the most "coffee-shop" feeling Starbucks I've ever been to {ie. big plush chairs, a wall of different, ornately framed mirrors}. So the pics are a bit blurry because I was, you know... driving about 70mph while taking them, my apologies.

Friday, March 19, 2010

Inspirational Photo Friday : Balloons of Color

Today's inspirations photo friday post is all about bright colors with a little bit of whimsy.  Sorry the formatting is all weird, Blogger was going CRAZY with the photos, I'm lucky to have them all on here!  I love the image of the couple with their tandem bike, how completely adorable is that? I wish I could master the bike-riding while wearing a skirt thing, so classy!  Anyways, enjoy the pictures, I have a house to clean for our soiree this evening!

All the pictures are from weheartit
Have an amazing weekend!