nobody expects the MRI noise

Yesterday was the day of my MRI and bloodwork. It was fasting blood so I was not allowed anything to eat or drink other than water from 7 am. I woke up at 5:30 so I could eat breakfast and already was greeted with a headache, which just got progressively worse throughout the day. I don’t know if you’ve ever had an MRI, but those things are INSANELY LOUD. Like, I had no idea anything could be that loud and that annoying LOUD. No one warned me. The techs never talked to me through the little speaker thing. It was like being jack-hammered by noise for 15-20 minutes solid in a little metal tube with a giant metal cage bearing down on my head and neck the entire time.

Go do a search on You Tube for “MRI noise” or “What is an MRI like?” there are some videos that give you some idea…

I canceled my follow-up with my ENT for today. The more I have thought about it, the more I am just not happy with the dosing of medications he gave me (the prednisone in specific but even the Cipro has done a number on me) and I’d rather get a second opinion and maybe go with a new doctor (one that hopefully has a better bedside manner while I’m at it) but honestly it’s just not a priority right now. The neurological stuff is way more important and worrisome than the same allergy bullshit I have been dealing with since living here and hopefully getting rid of the carpet will help with a lot of that, anyway.

I have added new items to the shop (two of which sold immediately) and have more coming today.


Metal Damask and Dot Pendant Necklace

and the winner of my giveaway will be announced on Wednesday.

wanting wednesdays: a crystal ball

I’m struggling a bit, peeps. I went to bed last night feeling discouraged. I made a custom piece at the request of a friend and when I told him the price he said he thought I was undervaluing my work. This would be the fourth time I’ve had this concern raised to me in regards to the things I sell in my Etsy shop (my mom actually overpaid me for things she bought from me because she disagreed with what I charged her for gifts she requested I make)…the problem is that things are not selling as I would like them to…so how I do I balance higher prices against merchandise that doesn’t seem to have an audience? I get rave reviews on the stuff I make…and yet there it sits. Lots of things get favorited or added to treasuries and still, there they sit. I actually had items expire. Which means that I had to decide to pay the fees again to renew them or let them go…what to do, what to do.

I’m stuck at the same number of “fans” on my Facebook page and even though I offered an incentive (10% coupon if you got 5 friends to join) that number hasn’t moved in months.

I love what I do and I’m so appreciative of all the support I have received, don’t get me wrong, I just don’t know if I know how to properly market myself I guess. Maybe that is my problem? Maybe I am making the wrong things? I love what I make, but maybe I don’t make things that have mass market appeal? Maybe I am not making enough or making things consistently enough? I also never want to be spammy and annoy people. It’s a weird balance. I don’t know.

I don’t want to come across as whinging or complaining, especially not here, because so many of you have been so supportive and so awesome, but I feel some pressure to make the shop a successful business instead of just a hobby because I stay at home. I would like to contribute more to our family’s financial well-being, you know? Especially given how the economy has been. I would like to be an example to my son that you really can do anything you set your mind to, with hard work and determination even if it’s a creative endeavor.

I just feel a bit lost right now and it’s stifling. I wish I had a crystal ball that would make things less hazy…

wanting wednesdays

Mac n cheese
That is some bangin mac n cheese I made last night for dinner. So bangin that I have posted about it on twitter and FB and now here. With it’s thyme-seasoned homemade oatnut bread crumbs, two cheeses, two milk products and 4 seasonings…..mmmmmmm! But really, the point is not the mac n cheese, the point is the mass destruction my kitchen undergoes when making a multi-pot, multi-step dish like homemade, from scratch mac n cheese. So what I want, for a wanting wednesdays dream, is a kitchen that is somehow bullet proof, or a kitchen staff to just clean up the mess. I want to cook, I enjoy cooking (most days) but the cleaning. UGH. The clean-up I can certainly pass.

Oh and unrelated: a teenager I don’t want to beat would be a pleasant bonus for today, kthnks.

uhhh you have some lutefisk in your hair

As I have been posting pics of myself for the vanity resolution, I have been receiving a lot of commentary re: my hair.

A Spade is a Spade!
Jan 3rd


Jan 5th (after a night of torrential downpour and sleeping with an ice pack)

So here’s the thing: I haven’t washed my hair since Dec 31st. That’s right. I also haven’t had to resort to the spray on shampoo, dry shampoo or baby-powdering my hair. My scalp may as well be the freaking Sahara for as infrequently as it gets greasy and it never smells EVER, IF I do the following things.

1) I wash my hair and condition it with actual “salon” product. I totally notice a huge different in my scalp when I resort to cheapie brands (but if I have to, the sulfate-free color care stuff from L’Oreal is least offensive apparently)

2) The best salon shampoo and conditioner for me (since the Topamax) is Paul Mitchell Lemon Sage Thickening. Which seams counter-intuitive because I have a shit-pot of hair, no joke. My hair stylist went at me forever thinning it out when I got it cut.

3) The only two products that go in my hair after washing are Moroccan Oil and Hairspray. THAT’S IT. If I want to wear my hair straight, it means more product which means shorter time between washing.

4) I let my hair air dry, which takes FOREVER. Seriously. I have had wet hair for an entire 12 hour day before. Mainly because I will roll it up into a bun and leave it that way all day to help calm the “I live in the devil’s armpit” frizzapalooza that goes on up in here.

5) I use my straightening iron to get the waves that I have been wearing. I section it off into small sections and roll it through the iron giving me the waves I want, then I spray the heck out of it with hair spray and let it set before I shake any of them loose.

6) Then I try not to touch my hair. That’s it. I don’t brush it. I don’t play with it (this is soooo hard for me, my nervous habit is twirling my hair) I will sleep on it and wake up in the morning and touch up whatever waves have fallen completely out but otherwise I try to leave it the heck alone.

7) The bangs are not subject to rule 6. They require daily futzing, mangling and spraying. I have to brush them or comb them to fluff them because they grow so fast I would have to get them cut every week and a half to maintain the right length.

8 ) I use Clairol root touch-up to manage my ABUNDANT gray hair. I pretend that the gray in the back doesn’t exist because I can’t see it.

9) If I want to wear my hair straight, I require: Morrocan Oil, some sort of smoothing serum while the hair is wet, a heat protection spray before ironing and an anti-frizz something or other after it’s ironed, plus a healthy dose of hair spray. I have to cop to trying MANY of the smoothing serums and MANY of the anti-frizz and none of them work as well as the salon’s red hot chi flat iron. Someday I will upgrade my straightening iron and save myself some aggravation.

10) If I want to put my hair up, I can do that I just have to put the waves back into it the next day and it will be fine.

11) My hair cut is long layers with a crap-ton of texturing, some fringing towards the front of my face and bangs.

Questions, comments?

the vanity resolution

So, it’s the time of year where everyone is all focused on New Year’s Resolutions. I have already posted a super long list of things I would like to get done this year. My husband spent last night rearranging the desks in our office so one of my items is already starting (but has a long road to the finish line still, this place is in shambles) but there is another that I started on the 1st, have stuck with every day since and am hoping to continue with for the majority of the year.

I want to get dressed any time I leave the house. I want to put thought in what I am wearing. I want to go through my closet, cull what I don’t need, keep what I do, alter what needs it and fix what needs fixing. I want to only purchase things I really want and not things that are just on mega sale. I want to feel good about myself and not like a giant SAHM schlumpadinka all the time. I’m reading and bookmarking posts like this one from Friday Playdate, I am trolling fashion bloggers I connect with like Kendi Everyday and I am looking to celebrities and tv personalities for my style icon inspiration. I’ve invested my Christmas cash in my face with some uber pricey (for me) face stuff, some new make-up (Laura Mercier tinted moisturizer) and take the time to moisturize my feet and elbows every night before bed now.

I am photographing my looks even if it’s just with an IPhone and posting them to flickr or twitter or both.
Jan 1
Shopping on Jan 1

Jan 2
Running errands on Jan 2

IPhone Day!
Getting my new IPhone yesterday

Today is going to be a bit of a pain because 1) it’s crap weather outside 2) I am babysitting my nephew, which is cause for lazy clothes and 3) I went to bed with and woke up with the same damn headache but I won’t be deterred too badly, I hope.

I am really looking forward to having a closet and wardrobe that works for me and feeling good in my skin.

an antidote to yesterday’s post

I know I usually do a Wanting Wednesday today and believe me, there are things I want but really who doesn’t?

I have been working on stuff for the shop for the last couple of days and I have a lot more work to do but I love it. I LOVE IT. It makes me so giddy and excited when I get and order and even moreso when I get feedback from someone that has bought something I made, worn it and received nothing but compliments on it. I enjoy wrapping each item, coordinating the paper and the tissue, the concentration of sewing, the creative process. I even broke out my jewelry tools the other day and made some earrings as thank you gifts for customers that have ordered multiple times with me. Good for the soul.

My house may be in shambles, my Christmas list may be nowhere near complete (would stores stop telling me this is LAST MINUTE OMG!!! Christmas is still 10 days away. Good grief.), my address book may be MIA keeping me from sending out my Christmas cards (speaking of, if you want me to have it, send it to me please) and I may never get a full night’s sleep again but I feel successful all the same.

vintage

This morning I read a lovely post about a Gatsby Summer Afternoon shared by another blogger. I’ve also read other posts about tweed bike rides in various cities and I’m sure there are other events out there that go along a similar theme. I think that is awesome and I would so love to do something like this, I love the vintage aesthetic and I love any excuse to dress up, but what really got me about that post is that the girl attending the event dresses in vintage on a daily basis. Can you imagine? I love vintage and there are few things I adore more than 40’s dresses, skirts, shoes and hats but I don’t think I could dress like that every day. It just seems like it would be so much work. I feel like getting dressed in “easily accessible” clothes is hard enough, I can’t imagine trying to source things from such a bygone era.

I always admire people that have a look they are committed to and do it so well. I feel too lazy at times. :)

polyvore

Today was the first time I’ve ever created a set on Polyvore, are y’all using it? I was inspired to join by a Kate Spade contest on FB.

Inspired By HollyFashion Trends & Styles - Polyvore

Inspired By Holly by Raven Darkholme featuring Kate Spade

holly street jasmine jumpsuit
$325 – katespade.com
More Kate Spade jumpsuits »

chad
$330 – katespade.com
More Kate Spade shoes »

Fossil Hathaway Tote Handbag
$88 – fossil.com
More FOSSIL tote bags »

Fossil Large Posy Ring – Size 7
$38 – fossil.com
More FOSSIL rings »

Lucky Brand ‘Summer Solstice’ Bib Necklace
$79 – nordstrom.com
More Lucky Brand necklaces »

harper
$117 – katespade.com
More Kate Spade accessories »

Amazon.com: Audrey Hepburn People Poster Print, 24×36: Kitchen &…
$6.80 – amazon.com


Tiffany Parfum
$125 – tiffany.com


coffee cup
lineaire.com


kate spade
katespade.com


So that is my look. Holly Golightly inspiration with a balance of high and low price points and precious/non-precious things.

Also today my post on stylish bicycle accessories on Style Lush.

so i have this etsy shop

but I haven’t done anything with it yet. I have been taking photos for a while (like since high school) and people seem to really respond positively. I have done some photo shoots for friends and family but I haven’t made that next step, the one where I actually charge money for my work. I’m not sure how to put a price on things that I have created, decide which things people might like…

It feels like once I actually take the step, there will be all this pressure, like if things don’t sell it will mean that I’m not good enough and 1001 hidden insecurities will come bubbling up to the surface. I don’t want to hold myself back though, I don’t want to keep myself from taking a step I should be taking, if I should be taking it. How do you know?

in case you’ve seen the news

Continental and United are merging; it has been leaking here, in the news, over the past several days because our Mayor is freaking out about losing one of the biggest companies/contributors to our local economy.

They are now heading into the stages of getting federal approval and shareholder approval so it’s obviously not happening tomorrow but unlike the Delta merger, there isn’t that much overlap in routes, so there is a good chance it’s going to happen as planned.

Headquarters are going to be in Chicago (United is headquartered there) but our CEO is going to be the CEO.

That’s really all the info I’ve got right now, we don’t know how (if at all) Willy is going to be affected. We’re hoping for the best (ie that he’s not asked to move, Sprog already said he wouldn’t come with us and not affected by any possible downsizing) so any spare positive thoughts you have, would be greatly appreciated.