24 April 2010


What a blog drought . . .
because the busy-ness did not stop after finals.
After all that came the busy-ness of graduation celebration,
and now the busy-ness of all Ben's family in town!

It's all been good busy-ness (what is the real word I'm looking for?),
but amid all the bustle, there's been another busy-ness going on in our heads:

—Ben's Master's in Landscape Architecture—

It's actually been in our heads for longer than just these past weeks. It started years ago, and came full-on over Christmas Break and into this semester. I've kept blog-quiet about it mostly so Ben wouldn't feel any pressure. But now it is time.
Maybe now I'll go back and re-cap it all in several posts. :)

THE DETAILS (for posterity's sake? scroll to the bottom if you're impatient) :

He applied to 6 schools. A couple "long-shots," a couple "for-sures," and a few in the middle.

We heard back from LSU (Louisiana State University in Baton Rouge)
in early February, just weeks after submitting the portfolio and application.
They are the #3 program in the nation, with a big emphasis on design and several faculty graduates from the #1 program at Harvard. Also home to my dear friend MJ, who I met in my early Graphic Design classes, and adored when we lived together at 27 Palace Court, London.

And then weeks passed with silence.
No letters—for months even!
A pair of rejections, but still nothing from the main LSU contender:
NC State University in Raleigh, North Carolina.

LSU said "OK, we've already extended your deadline. We need to know now."

So we said "OK."

But they didn't ask for a deposit so we crossed fingers that meant no financial consequence for backing out. Then came phone calls and emails to the poor graduate admissions office in NC.
We finally got a faculty ally, and on Monday (19 April) he sent an email saying "You're in."
(Really! That's how it was worded!) And we'd need to accept or decline by May 1.

But then it was decision time. You see, we didn't favor NC over LSU;
they were equally good decisions for different reasons.

NC's program is #14, more expensive than LSU, but also, o-so-importantly close to family.
Jordan and hoodlums in Durham, and Kurt & Becky in Chapel Hill.

Monday, with Kurt and Becky close, just 3 days off the plane from Korea, we were feeling NC.
Tuesday, as we pondered LSU's credentials and the fact that they eagerly called Ben to accept him soon after applying (as opposed to being next off the waiting list at NC), we felt LSU.
Wednesday was back to NC after I had a dream about Jordan's kids not knowing me and a visit with a counselor who emphasized the art/craft and design culture in North Carolina.
Thursday I was invited to apply for a full-time designer position at a big stable company (where MJ works) meaning benefits, bonuses, and stability. Oh how we'll need that to get us through the jump in tuition from our cozy in-state private tuition here at BYU! Ben was also feeling LSU,

but he told me that day he didn't want to wait til May 1st. I asked when he wanted to decide.


I asked if he knew that would be an NC day according to our pattern... ;)
Friday morning, Ben got a reply from a professor at NCSU that graduated from LSU answering Ben's questions about the differences and strengths of each program. He forwarded the reply to me at work and an hour or two later popped up on the chat asking,

I didn't see it for a while because I was working on something...
but when I read it, I smiled. It was so crazy, because I really was feeling it too.

I didn't feel anxious after, or worried, or lost. It was just right. Awesome.

He starts July 1st.

. . .

(When I told my family, Josie went to grab an heirloom that's been looming upstairs— GO FIG: Sean and I both did our 5th grade reports on THE TAR HEEL STATE.)

Sean's State Report poster. Maybe as I pack away my life this summer, I'll find my poster.


12 April 2010


I love Mormon Messages, and I love the DR.
And the two together? I can hardly stand it!
I cannot get enough of their accent. Oh-so-Dominican!

(THANKS KURT, for the tip. What a thoughtful Father-in-Law, no?)

08 April 2010


got great gifts for that golden day:

awesome earrings—two halves of the same avocado. from jenny (who found them on some awesome etsy shop; the girl lived in isreal. do you remember the name, jenny? i've been killing myself looking for the link.)

accessorize—there is a line from the first olivia book that says "of course, you can always accessorize." i think i carry the pig's same motto. but i rarely use hair accessories. not because i don't like them but because i don't take the time to make/money to buy them, nor do i "do" my hair often enough. this pin from ann motivates me to change all that. when i wear it, i instantly feel fashion-y.

from ben—best magazine ever. it's almost overwhelming to read because i love every inch of every page. so much. (the sad really sad thing is i forgot to switch my address with them and i didn't get the other 2 issues of the subscription.) and earrings are my daily bread. he bought them on darlybird.

i ♥ mail—i think one of the best matches between me & ben's family is making cool mail. so obviously, i loved katy's "wrapping/packaging" as much as i loved the frida goodies inside. 

packaging, again—devin gave me a cool wooden wall art of a decorative "O" (sorry no photo) but she says she knew i'd love the reusable giftbag just as much. its uses are endless, but the best one is probably for carrying lunches. so much better than a plastic bag and fits my big tupperwares better than a lunchbox.

great cards—people made really nice, cool, and funny cards for me. from ann, ashley, and cam, respectively. aren't these all amazing? they are.

this is not even everything, of course. but i felt it worth documenting even though i'm actually posting this a year later...

04 April 2010


But you and I know better, right?

One cold night (a week or two ago?),
after parking near the MOA for our all-too-familiar late night stays at the HFAC,
Ben ever so non-chalantly plucked a branch from a tree and packed it in the car with us.

He came home, gave it a test tube of water and stuck it in the planter pot:

We got to watch the popcorn popping right before our eyes:

But we didn't have to look out the window!


and side note:

He's taken up little Bonsai,
and found the best re-use for egg cartons!

01 April 2010


Yeah, I'm entering a contest.

Believe it or don't.

How could I not when it is just fun, even if I don't get a precious wooly bunny?

And yes, these are basically my elves, but bunny-ified. Like I said, in the name of FUN.