Monday, May 30, 2011

Memorial Day and the Start of Summer

I just want to say that I'm thankful for all those that sacrificed their lives for this country and that as sobering as this day is that it also sheds light on humanity and gives hope to the fact that there are people willing to be the everyday heroes every nation needs - and that everyday heroes will continue to serve and protect people in times of tragedy. Thank you to the soldiers of today and the soldiers of yesteryear.

I truly believe that whatever your take on the military that respect and appreciation should be given to the ones who sacrificed everything, to the ones who are doing things for the right reasons, to the ones you love and admire. My dad was in the military for 20 years, and he really taught me the importance of remembering those that died, those that served. I thank him for serving, and any of you that have or are. God bless you and be with you and yours.

On another note, Memorial Day Weekend equates to summer in my mind; the smell of Bar-B-Que, the warm sun beating down on my head, and oldies music blasting from the radio. Summer is officially here, and I cannot wait to see what my summer holds. Every summer is different, and every summer I've experienced has been wonderful. My best friend Caitie is back for the entire summer and I'm super excited. She was only here for a month last summer. Last summer was one of healing and making tons of new experiences. Can't wait to make a lot of money and just spend unaltered fun with family and friends - no school attached. I don't know how many more carefree summers I have - but I know that I'm going to make the best of them.

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Do you like good music? That sweet soul music?

I should totally be sleeping...but I can't! Curses!

Music is one of my favorite things (as it is everyone's). Imagine a life without it! Misery. Still, I feel I'm more dedicated to music than the average Joe. I keep up to date on the music scene - so pretty much everything except country music (I still love you Taylor Swift.) I LOVE WHEN PEOPLE INTRODUCE ME TO NEW MUSIC! Anyway, I was texting Vanessa today when we both remarked that 2011 is the BEST YEAR IN MUSIC (in general) - or at least highly notable. Not only did Radiohead and Death Cab for Cutie produce albums this year (my two favorite bands next to The Beatles) - so did/are The Strokes, Incubus, Adele, Arctic Monkeys, Sublime with Rome, Lady Gaga, Junior Boys, and, as Vanessa most recently informed me, Fiona Apple is due to release one! It's like Christmas every month almost. We'll see if any other of my favorite artists are planning releases (I'm sure I'm missing a few), but so far, so amazing!

To celebrate, I've listed their singles (or favorites - Radiohead, Death Cab for Cutie, The Strokes, Incubus, Adele, Arctic Monkeys, and Sublime with Rome) off their new albums so others can enjoy such musical bliss, as well as little notes and if the album's worth buying or downloading for you pirates - though you shouldn't be pirating if you truly love any of these artists.

Album out now!
Worth buying? Hell to the absolute yeah. Every single track is amazing. If you like Radiohead, and especially if you like "Lotus Flower" or their past album In Rainbows, you will love The King of Limbs. The only issue I have with the album is that it's only 8 tracks. Boo!

"Lotus Flower"
YouTube wouldn't let me embed the music video so here's the link:

Oh, and here's a spoof (THEY WERE ASKING FOR IT) on the music video for "Lotus Flower."

As for the explanation, I'll just quote myself from an article I wrote for my college newspaper Coyote Chronicle ("like" us on Facebook even though I don't have one anymore!) a few months back:

"This song is simply a beauty. You feel as if you're on a roller coaster, riding the rails up and down in slow motion, beginning at the base of the hill with plenty of bass, reaching higher and higher until you're on your way down with [Thom] Yorke's voice carrying you, floating on the gentle beating of drums and the occasional claps that sound so perfectly in-sync that your head starts nodding subconsciously to the beat. Yorke promises that 'I'll set you free' and for five perfect minutes you'll actually feel that you are."

Just a note: I totally danced to Radiohead like this before I saw this music video. Glad to know I envisioned correctly how the mastermind who creates this music dances to it. How fun is it, albeit embarrassing? Thom, we're supposed to dance to your music like this IN PRIVATE. But I forgive you for revealing your dance moves, you amazing, amazing musician you. You better dance at your concerts from now on. (I cry-laughed the first time I saw the video FYI. Didn't you?)

Death Cab for Cutie
Album Due: March 31 (as in TUESDAY OF THIS UPCOMING WEEK!) The new album will be called Codes and Keys. I can't recommend it yet...ohwhothehellamIkidding? DEATH CAB FOR CUTIE NEVER EVER EVER EVER FAILS. All their albums are pieces of art and each album is one I treasure.

"You Are a Tourist"

Nom nom nom. You know it's Death Cab for Cutie from the first note. I love this song, it's so encouraging and uplifting and really, really makes me want to get out of this town! I must say, I'm not entirely used to it. Sure, they've had happy songs but for the most part they're very depressing. BUT because Ben Gibbard (the lead singer, the same lead singer from Postal Service in case you didn't know, Gibbard also has gone solo) is now married to Zooey Deschanel (just last year; she is the voice behind the band She & Him, which I adore) I think his songs will be more on the happy side, as they should be.

Can you say cutest musician couple ever?

Note: I really miss the chubby, cute Ben Gibbard. He was too adorable.

The Strokes
Album out now!
Worth buying? I admit it took me awhile to like each song on the album. I had to listen to the album thrice over before I completely...FELL IN LOVE WITH IT! I would highly recommend buying it, especially if you've never heard of them before (but probably heard them on the radio) and really like their sound (because their entire album sticks to that indie electric guitar-y-ness - as do their past albums). These hipsters deliver. And there's nothing quite like a Strokes-y guitar solo, is there? Best electric guitar compilations of today. The album is called Angles.

"Under Cover of Darkness"

Album Due: July 12th. Can't say whether or not I'll love this one as much as past albums (but I must admit I was only a semi-fan of Light Grenades - their last album - though I had a few definite favorites off that album) but from the sounds of "Adolescents" I have a very, very good feeling that I will be a huge fan. I literally just put this song on repeat all day. So great. Their new album will be called If Not Now, When?


Note: Brandon Boyd is my man! Seriously. I've loved Incubus since 6th grade, and have always loved Mr. Boyd. He is my #1 musician (in looks). He just oozes sex. The way he sings. His lyrics. His tattoos. How he plays the guitar. Um, the way he LOOKS. Brandon, Brandon, Brandon. From 6th grade until now, you're still my #1. Now that's what I call loyalty! (And good genes!)

Album out now!
Worth buying? Adele's voice is so powerful and she is so, so talented (I often fantasize about having her voice, I'm such a dweeb) it's ridiculous that she also has songs that are so deep and meaningful and wonderful. Lots of piano and the array of instruments that her songs bring to the surface definitely hit a chord with me (nice pun, huh?) - they're just displayed so nicely intermingled with her deep, womanly vocals (such range!). This album is probably going to be more appreciated by the girls than the boys, but I don't think that me saying that should defer any gentlemen from giving it a listen. She has talent, there's no denying it, even if her genre of music is not up your alley. The album is called 21.

"Rolling in the Deep"

To show just how amazing she is, here's a live version:

And no, I have no idea what she says at the end.

Note: "Rolling in the Deep" reminds me a lot of my last relationship, and it's weird, but somehow I appreciate it more because of that. (And what's with super cockney British women having such powerful, awesome voices? See: Amy Winehouse, Lily Allen - she has the sweetest "Fuck You" song ever, and yes, it's literally named that - sorry Cee Lo but it's better than yours, Kate Nash, etc. Anyway, Winehouse needs to get back in the game ASAP.)

Arctic Monkeys
Album out now!
One of my top 10 favorite bands. Alex is a genius. And his acoustic sets make me drool. They are perfect, and he is so British it makes me want to squeeze him tight and never let go (I have a thing for British artists it seems, blame it on my love for The Beatles). Arctic Monkeys is growing into a "legendary band," and you can hear it. I feel a part of a very special experience when I listen to these two songs. In short, BUY THIS ALBUM ASAP! It is their best one yet! It's called "Suck It and See." Please do yourself a favor and download their album RIGHT. THIS. SECOND.

"Suck It and See"

"Be cruel to me because I am a fool for you" is my favorite line from "Suck It and See." Oh, man. Have I felt just like he has. "You have got that face that just says, 'Baby, I was made to break your heart.'" Goosebumps.

But my favorite song (I know, already) has to be "Love is a Laserquest" (his emotions get the best of him at the end):

It's about growing up and realizing what being in love truly is, what love truly means, and how it is when your heart gets broken - and how you just can't forget no matter how much you want to. It's amazingly deep and I feel like he made this song especially for me and my first ex-love. "And I convince myself I need another, and for a minute it gets easier to pretend that you were just some lover." I can't believe I'm saying this, but I actually started crying when this song ended. Seriously. I didn't realize it until the end when I tasted salt on my lips and my cheeks all of a sudden felt wet. I was surprised and amazed.

Sublime with Rome
Album Due: July 12th. It's going to be called Yours Truly. The single "Panic" is an original by Rome. Anyone who knows me knows I love reggae, ska, etc., it's so fun and energetic - I love it! Anyway, Rome's no Bradley - obviously! And I hate when people compare them. OBVIOUSLY he's not Bradley, idiots. Anyway, Rome is awesome and I really like his stuff. He covers Sublime songs with zeal and other songs brilliantly. I'm definitely seeing these guys in concert (the most affordable band on my list!) No excuses.


TI's "Whatever You Like"

That concludes this entry. I just have one last thing to say...

Do you like good music? Kudos to whoever knows what song my title is from.

Monday, May 23, 2011

To Build a Home

I absolutely adore this song. I stumbled across it when I clicked on Blue Lily Photography's website (GORGEOUS portraits *drool*). It just makes you feel so relaxed and happy/melancholy! I know that's a contradiction...but it does!

Also, it's almost three in the morning but I am craving breakfast already! I've been trying this new diet my mom was introduced to by one of her employees. You buy Naked Juice's Green Machine (which alone is pretty fantastic), process celery and whatever other greens you like into the juice and add this seed mix (which you can find a bag of at your local Mexican grocery store like El Super), most notably filled with cactus seed - or I'm sure you can even just use Chia seed. Then you add some orange juice. The "shake" isn't all too bad, especially if you let it sit overnight. It really does curb your appetite. The only problem is that it curbs it so much that I don't get hungry until around 3 or 4 depending on how much energy I'm spending (before I had dinner at 7 or 8, even as late as 9) - to which I eat whatever I feel like, but since I'm an insomniac the night time munchies really get to me. I had a cup of cereal around midnight and now I'm hungry again. All the diet books say going to sleep early is key to losing weight. And I truly understand why. You're so tempted to sneak into the kitchen to grab a coined "midnight snack" it's ludicrous - especially when you've already had one! One of my favorite bloggers, Design Mom (, posted this video from Vimeo on her blog and I've been re-watching it every so often for the last hour. (I know, I'm not exactly helping myself.)

BSS | Breakfast Interrupted from Bruton Stroube Studios on Vimeo.

Also, I've noted I don't really follow up so well in my blog. Often times I'll say I'll write down what happens after something ensues but I rarely do. Mostly because I completely forget to. So with regards to feeling defeated, I've come to terms that struggling in school is simply something I have to accept and overcome. I'm not sure if I can do anything about it this quarter since it's almost over, but there's always next quarter. And I know it won't happen again. I simply won't allow it - and by God's grace, I know He won't let me allow it to happen again either.

Summer fast approaches and I'm feeling anxious. As a swim teacher, I'm looking to tackle teaching morning AND evening lessons this summer - I need the money to pay for school and loans and have some leftover for summer fun of course. However, the hours have changed. Morning lessons are from 9am-1pm and evening lessons are from 5pm-7:30pm. The latter seems ridiculous to me. What parent would subject their child to swim lessons between 7pm-7:30pm (swim lessons are half hour sessions)? Isn't that when they should be going to sleep? Okay, I'm being facetious, but that means the pool won't close until 9:30pm since evening swim (for the public) will open at 7:30pm. I don't know what the city is thinking or why they changed it, but I don't like the new hours at all. Also, the pool I typically work at isn't opening until June 11th. Which is fine since school doesn't let out until June 17th and I didn't plan on working until after I'm done with finals anyway. Still, I'm bummed about getting out of school so late. I'll be missing out on almost the entire month of June. I only have until September 4th to make good money before the pools close again and then it's back to my meager salary at AMC (which I'll still be working at on weekends so I don't lose my yearlong job). Speaking of AMC, I desperately want to find a better job, even just a different job. I've probably mentioned this before? Working at the movies has its perks (free movies not only for you but for family and 'a friend' - though you can sometimes get away with bringing more than one) but I've been working there since 2009. It's time to move on. So once the pool closes I'll be job hunting for a better/different job so that I can expand my resume - and escape from the annoying clutches of AMC! (Of course, I am thankful I have a job(s) at all.) On top of juggling those two jobs, I'll still be tutoring William as well as teaching him to swim along with two of his friends. I'll be doing that Mondays and Wednesdays between morning and evening lessons, 2pm-4pm. My amazing pupil has picked up reading like a pro - we're slowly venturing into reading "big kid books" like "There is a Bird on Your Head!" by Mo Willems (great and hilarious kid's author if you have a child's sense of humor); I'm afraid he won't need me much longer (*tear*)! Teaching little William the joys of reading is very exciting and rewarding not only for him but for me as well. I can't (and at the same time CAN) wait until I have kids of my own. It's going to be so fun teaching them to read and sharing my love for books with them.

That brings me to my next subject. Everyday I pine to move out and start a life of my own with my own place to decorate and love and make mine. The song "To Build a Home" is perfect because that's what I want: to build a home. I was talking to my friend the other day and she was telling me about her boyfriend not being motivated to move out. Neither of us could understand it, but while we were talking I had an epiphany. I've had plans to move out for awhile. Unfortunately, I don't have the means to make that into reality. However, once I graduate and find a stable job naturally I will have the means (I better!). HOWEVER...I've realized that everyone that has their own place has it with their significant other. Some of my friends in college still have roommates, but a lot of my friends live together with their boyfriends or girlfriends. By the time I graduate and get myself situated, finding a roommate I know and trust could be a hassle - considering my friends will most likely move in with their boyfriends or girlfriends after they graduate. I've realized I'm probably not going to move out until I have a boyfriend. And that bums me out. One, because that's not what I want at the moment (and the decision to move-in, etc takes time to develop and make happen - or at least should) and two, because I want to live with my friends. I know I could probably (expensively) live on my own, but I wouldn't like to. Living by myself just SOUNDS lonely. And don't get me wrong, I love my alone time. But...not everyday. I just wouldn't want to. I don't know when I'll get to build a home. I guess I'll just have to be patient. Like ALWAYS. Darnnabbit.

Monday, May 16, 2011


Doubt is something everyone experiences. Whether it's doubt in religion, in a person, or yourself. Right now...I'm experiencing self-doubt. I've never doubted myself, or rather, I can't remember ever doubting myself. I'm sure I have, but it wasn't significant. Right now, I'm struggling in the one thing I've never really struggled with. And that's school. I know it's annoying to say I haven't struggled in school. I mean, I have, especially with a few of my classes. But it's nothing like what I'm feeling now.

I spent a great amount of time studying for my math midterm. More than I've ever spent for a math class. And I failed it.

I'm used to doing poorly on math tests. It's just not my strong point. But this one really hit home. I need to pass it. I've failed a math class in college before. The first class I ever failed. And it's happening again. Once that test is passed out, the equations seem mystified, as if I've never seen them before, even though I spent hours doing extreneous examples very similar to the one staring me in the face.

I'm not sure why it is I'm having such a hard time. My other classes are all in order...but math. My always-enemy. I'm going to tutoring in the morning, and I hope it helps but I'm just so exasperated. I'm so tired of math, the subject that makes me feel like a complete idiot. I don't know if I can pass this class, I might have put "too much" on my plate - even though it shouldn't be awful since my other classes are relatively easy ones.

I hate having to tell my friends about it, because I know I look like a whiner. You just got one bad grade? So what? But my friends are all so successful, sometimes I just feel like the bad egg. I know I shouldn't feel embarrassed, but I do. They'd offer nothing but support, but it's hard. I will tell my best friend when she gets back home since it's more than just failing one test, it's college in general. I'm so unmotivated in school it scares me sometimes. I deleted my Facebook because I feel it adds on to my laziness. I go online to print out a take home quiz or check my bank statement and I end up spending an hour on Facebook. It's habit-forming, and that's one thing I strive to stay away from. I don't need it, and I honestly don't think I'll reactivate it. All of my true friends I can get in contact with without the help of Facebook. Call it a purging process.

I hope that whatever may happen considering how things are going in school that I gain confidence in my abilities to get through the tough stuff. I hate feeling defeated and weak.

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Day 28: What attracts you to someone.

A lot of things can attract me to someone.

Of course, there's being physically attracted to someone. From their build to their complexion, eye color. I'm a sucker for guys with nice arms and a nice smile.

Often times though, it will be something subtle that will have me reeling over a guy. From sharing a common love for a band (huuuge) to recognizing an odd thing I happen to be into, like a particular anime or game, or when they shoot me an irresistable smile I blush at (yikes). Sometimes I see them in their element, playing a sport or an instrument, and I get hooked. It's just raw and there's nothing hotter than seeing someone go at something passionately.

Honestly, it varies. I'm not a girl who has a "type." I just don't believe in them. Why limit yourself?

When it comes to being attracted on a deeper level...

I love a guy I can talk to comfortably, about anything. Whether it be politics, religion, current events or if they prefer milk over orange juice. They need to handle randomness: Would you be able to survive on an island for 40 days if someone said they'd rescue you after that time? I'm random as all else and I need a guy who embraces that. Otherwise, it just won't work. I need a guy that I don't feel stupid around if I act like a complete dork. Because that's who I am. I can be cheesy and not-so-suave and it's amazing when I meet a guy who's just as goofy as me and loves that I'm the way I am. Of course, that's a given.

We need to have fun no matter what we're doing and he has to be adventurous. Sure, we can stay in some days, but I'm all about creating experiences and need someone who shares that desire. Also, an understanding of God is key to me. It's hard to find nowadays but when it comes to connecting on a deeper level it's the most important thing. Like the last piece of a puzzel.

Now that I've gotten older, why I'm attracted to someone has tweaked somewhat. Ambition is wildly desirable. Someone who has a plan and goes through with it. I don't want all talk and no action. I won't accept it anymore.

But, that's all I can think of at the moment. I don't sound too outrageous I hope!

Can't believe I forgot this one: HUMOR. If you don't have a sense of humor you don't have a chance!