Ciao.

IMG_7036This weekend was full of fun. I will try to spare you on all the rambling on details but it was nice to do something out of the norm. Not that my weekends have been “normal” or anything. I am pretty aware of the fact that I live a “dull life” in comparison to many of the people that I interact with on a daily basis. I’ve actually been busier than I’m used to over the last few weeks though. But if you’ve been keeping up with my blog or twitter feed, you already knew that.

We had a nice yet unexpected dinner with my aunt on Friday evening. And we also went to visit my SO’s niece and nephew which was a blast because they are both at such fun ages. I remember growing up and my Uncle Troy seemed to be always present in my younger childhood days. Moments with him were some of my favorite growing up.

We haven’t always had the opportunity to connect with our niece and nephew as often as we’d like to have in the past but are making a great effort to do so as much as we can presently. It’s a good feeling.

Bw-obAeCcAErsTdSaturday was full of JC, shopping, a baby shower for Channing’s sister and some good ol’ quality visiting time with my mom. When days are jam packed with thing after thing after thing, it seems that there are never enough seconds in the day. I loved every bit of the weekend but I wish that I could have spent more time doing each thing because it seems like an hour only last 20 minutes these days.

Oh, and my mom, brother, and I went to get our hair done at my aunts salon in Halstad. (This is a different aunt from my Friday venture.) I wish I had a picture of my moms new do as well because she looks great!

Does time go faster than it should? I began to notice that each day seemed to go a little faster when I was in 4th grade. I don’t know what the particular event was but I know that I was at school and I all of a sudden felt like the day zoomed by. Around that time, I must have become more concussions of the measure of time.

As I’m proofreading this post, it’s kind of silly I guess. To lay out what I did on my weekend. It’s actually kind of boring. I just felt like writing and really don’t have anything specific to write about.

Actually, I do have a couple things to write about but I’m working through how to construct the posts. I have some blurbs of thoughts down but nowhere to go with them. We’ll see what happens. Ciao.

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Here’s Looking At You, Kid.

If I would have blogged yesterday, I would have spent my time bitching about a really stressful work week. I would have probably had a bit of a pity party and questioned why God puts morons in our lives. Maybe it’s to test our patience, who knows. But..it’s not yesterday. It’s tomorrow.

It’s a little nuts to know that a person can be angry, frustrated, and irate after a long week of working but within 30 seconds of being in the presence of a 3 1/2 year-old, the mood can be changed drastically. I’m hanging out with my niece and nephew this weekend and you know what, it’s exactly what I needed. I needed a pause button on the stress of grown-up life.

IMG_6572Kids are blissfully happy. They have no worries, they aren’t trying to impress anyone. They don’t care what comes out of their mouths in fear that someone will judge them. They are just themselves and it’s amazing. Children are the lessons in life that we don’t give enough recognition to.

I’m not yet a mom but one day I hope to be and I can’t wait until that period of time in my life. I know kids aren’t all rainbows and butterflies but at the end of the day, a child brings a light of sunshine into a shady outlook. They give parents, aunts, uncles, grandparents, and friends a reason to get up in the morning and a reason to smile no matter the problems that engulf the world we live in.

With that being said, I feel much more at peace hanging out with the little dude you see to the right. He’s a ball of energy and has a mountain full of life ahead of him. I want to show him that anything is possible and I’ll be living proof of it. I’ll be vrooming cars and cho-cho-choing Thomas The Train for the next 48 hours. Happy Saturday, all!

So if you have the chance blogging world, hang out with a kid today. (A kid that you know of course. Don’t be a creeper and lurk around a playground.)

My Memorial Day Weekend Was Memorable.

10410096_10152414310318363_1536059176270689246_nAs you can see, I haven’t blogged in a good two or so weeks. I don’t know where to start. We went on what I’d call our ‘first real vacation’ over the holiday weekend. I’ve been to a few places before. My parents, boyfriend, and I went to Eau Claire over Labor Day last year so I suppose I should also classify that as a vacation too but..anyways.

10308161_10152414310113363_7604619791352627641_n“C” and I went to Duluth, MN for a nice 4-day getaway. Set aside the backseat driving, our time there, during, and back was absolutely wonderful. On Friday, we didn’t have anything planned since we took our time to get there so we mosied our way down and through Canal Park. This is officially one of my most favorite places in the little bit of the world that I’ve seen. It was almost movie like. Kids were rushing with melting ice cream cones to watch the ships enter the harbor. A little old man was feeding seagulls bread. Tourists were gawking over the lighthouse at the end of the strip. The temperature was 72 degrees with a breeze.

10169411_10152418652473363_927707804006529661_nOn Saturday, we toured the well-known Glensheen mansion and took a cruise aboard the Vista Fleet. With my camera acting as a necklace, I couldn’t stop snapping memories one by one. Don’t worry, I made sure to cherish the moments as well. I know that some people will tell you to live in the moment which is great advice and I like to live by that. 10363843_10152418651168363_3801365417157104304_n But moments aren’t forever. They fade. They are lost. Days, weeks, and years drift by so quickly that we could never expect our minds to remember the little things. Those moments are the ones I photograph. I don’t need to remember my face or his on those days. I don’t need to remember the breeze on my back. But I do and I will need to remember the view. The images that I see will always bring me back to the moments even when I’m old and wrinkly.

To end a beautiful day on the water, we ventured to Enger Park. It’s at the tip-top part of the Duluthian hills. You can see it from Lake Superior as a little thimble at the top of a hill but when you’re up there, after your ears have popped, and you’ve climbed the six flights of stairs, you feel like you’re on top of the world. It’s absolutely breathtaking. To be able to take in North Shore to the Areial Lift Bridge on Canal Park, out into the emptiness of Lake Superior, over the railroad tracks and to Wisconsin is just beautiful. There isn’t any other way to describe it other than that. Simple and peaceful. Life isn’t so hard when you’re on top of a hill looking at all there is to offer.

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1554408_10152418647558363_7867321417357191154_nSunday, oh Sunday. It was an adventure to say the least. We traveled about 45 minutes to the north of Duluth along the scenic North Shore route 61. Our first stop was Gooseberry Falls. And to sum it up in one word: breathtaking. I know it sounds like I’m repeating myself adjectivally throughout this post but everything really was “that amazing!” Gooseberry Falls is one of those places that everyone should have on their Bucket Lists. Once you make your way through the little bit of a hike to get there, you’re presented with children and families embracing all the Falls have to offer. It’s gorgeous. We sat on a few rocks right near the underside of the falls and just listened to the water crashing below. 10406759_10152418655333363_957176214802948853_nI sat quietly observing the children playing and the adventure seekers climbing the cliffs. I watched as a man and his dog fitted with booties hopped from rock to rock. We climbed our way down to the “rapids” and slowly but surely took a walk through the water, over the slippery rocks. Feeling the pressure on our ankles and calfs, moving against the current. Moments like those are the ones you smile at while looking into the nothingness off your deck after a long day at work. It was something that I hope to never forget. We would love to make another trip to eastern Minnesota just to see these again.

10312838_10152418653823363_4341966486862979581_nReady for another awe-inspiring view? Split Rock Lighthouse is only about 10 minutes from Gooseberry Falls. How can two of the most beautiful places I’ve ever seen be so close in proximity? Jackpot! Lighthouses are my weakness. Really anything sea or ship related to be quite frank. I don’t know what it is. Maybe it’s the history or the mystery. Whatever it may be, bring me to a lighthouse, show me something with an anchor on it and we’ll be best friends until the end.

10298877_10152414309893363_3234319371217711934_nThis past weekend was filled with so much love and laughter, that I can’t even express it in a blog post but I have learned one thing: ENJOY IT. I feel so often that I worry too much about the future and over-analyze my past. I compare myself to others constantly and am afraid that I’m not living my life to it’s full potential. I’m making a proactive effort to change my way of thinking. I’ve been reading so many “find yourself” articles lately, that I really do need to find myself before life continues to drift on by as quickly as it has been. Screw what everyone else is doing. I don’t want my biggest regret to be worrying about everyone and everything else, not going on those trips or spending that money. Not buying that lake property. Not moving to that city and getting that promotion.

So, after a long awaited much deserved (if I do say so myself) vacation to Duluth, MN – live it up people. Make memories with those you love. Take pictures. Take tons of pictures. Laugh, slip, fall down, and get back up. Climb that extra flight to get to the top. Fight for your happiness and make damn sure that smile is real.10309209_10152414281593363_8809544577189953159_n

Much love. -Oar

DIY Meal/Menu Board.

This is about two weeks in the making but I’ve been unusually busy lately.
[It’s a good thing!] Enjoy! ~Ori

Now, a heads up. This is my first instructional DIY. I didn’t realize until after the fact that I should have taken more photos. I’m going to write instructions for the entire process but I apologize on steps without photos. Here we go!

Inspiration:
Pinterest of course! I don’t really have a solid color theme in my kitchen right now due to the bland white walls of apartment living so I wanted to think for the long run. I love the idea of bright bold colors for my future kitchen. So that’s what I went with.

Purpose:
As you know, I’ve been trying for my entire life to get healthy and more recently I’ve noticed that I can do just fine [food wise] during the day. Breakfast, snack, lunch. It’s when I get home that I overindulge. I often forget to take out meat from the freezer the night before or we don’t have enough groceries. Or we are just plain too lazy to cook so we go out to eat. I’m hoping this will be the solution.

What You Need:
16 x 20 painting canvas
1/2 yard of fabric
4 – 5 pieces of colored paper (to correspond with your fabric.)
2 spools of ribbon (1 wider than the other, you’ll layer them.)
8-10 clothespins
Stickers (For the days of the week. I found letters for this one but you can use actual weekdays.)
Hot glue gun and glue
Glue stick or glue pen
Notepad (About 5 1/2″ long)
X-Acto Knife (I used my boyfriends Kobalt utility knife)
Small folded box (Mini-light boxes from Christmas work perfect!)

PicMonkey Collage

1. You’ll start by placing the fabric face down on the surface you’re working on. Center the canvas [also upside down] on the fabric. Cut the fabric leaving about 1.5″ to 2″ of fabric around the entire perimeter of the canvas.

IMG_52722. Taking the hot glue gun, first glue down each corner. Then glue down the top and bottom. Once you have the top and bottom glued, you can glue each side. This is where I would recommend to pull the fabric a little bit so that it is snug around the entire canvas.

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3. A.Flipping the now fabric covered canvas over, cut and position the first row of ribbon about 3 inches from the side and place it vertically. [Use the thicker ribbon first.] You’ll flip over the canvas and hot glue it to the back. Just be sure that you keep your line straight.

3. B. Once that is finished, do the exact same process with the thinner strip of ribbon. Make sure that this thinner ribbon is centered within the thicker ribbon.

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4. Cut out seven circles. These will be used for the days of the week. You might need to adjust the size and shape depending on what kind of stickers you bought.

5. Put the stickers on the the circles [or whatever shape you decided on]. Using the hot glue gun again, center the shapes with stickers on the clothespins.

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6. Leaving about 5″ open at the top of the board. Glue the the clothes pins onto the strip of ribbon that you previously attached to the board. Make sure to lay them out on the board prior to gluing to ensure that you space them evenly.

7. A. Make a menu sign! I cheated and used fancy lettering in Microsoft Word, printed, and cut out the letters. But if you’re feeling extra creative you can definitely write or draw your own menu sign.IMG_5317

7. B. Your menu sign should be about 7″ to 8″ long and 3″ or so high. Get crafty with this! I cut out the letters, glued them onto yellow paper and then glued that onto the orange paper. [Don’t glue this to the board yet.]

IMG_53188. You’ll also make a “Meal Choices” sign and a “Grocery List” sign. I won’t go into much detail with this because it will vary on what you like. I would recommend that these each take up about a 4″ long and 2″ wide space. [Don’t glue this to the board yet.]

9. A. Remember those mini-lights that you used for Christmas and you NEVER put them back in the box? Now they can come in handy! Using a ruler, measure a 2.5″ depth all the way around the box and mark with a pen.

IMG_5315 - Copy

9. B. Using your X-Acto knife, carefully cut around the entire box so that you have a nice little cutout square. You will then take some of the thick ribbon that you used previously and cover the box. This part is a little tricky and unfortunately I don’t have an picture for it but you can check out the end result to see what it’ll look like. I lined both the inside and outside with this ribbon.

**A few things that I do not have individual pictures on can be seen below in the final product. As always, you can alter as you see fit and per your individual style and design.**

10. A. I glued two more clothes pins kitty corner on the top left hand side of the board and snapped in the menu sign.

10. B. On the right hand side of the board, I would recommend positioning out your remaining pieces which would include two signs, your note pad, and ribbon covered box. I left a space in-between the grocery list and the box and put another clothespin with a handmade ribbon glued to the top. Change it up or do the same, whichever you like.

10. C. With some left over paper, go ahead and make menu entries. Make as many as you’d like. You can make them long or short, specific or not specific. I have listed some simple ideas below. The more specific you are the more you’ll have but than it will be easy to double or triple up. Any entries that you’re not using for that week can easily be stored in your handy box. [See bottom right.]


Menu Entry Ideas: Out To Eat. Something Easy. Shake N’ Bake Pork Chops. Peas. Corn On The Cob. New Recipe. Grilled Potatoes. Spaghetti and Garlic Toast. Potato Salad. Cantaloupe. Bananas. Tuna Melts. Tomato Soup. Soup and Sandwich. Pasta Night! Grill Out. Chicken Breasts. Mashed Potatoes. Honey Ham.

Hope you enjoyed reading through and creating your first DIY menu board! The same concept can be easily used and manipulated to make a children’s chore chart or summertime activity board. I’d love to see your finished product photos. Thanks!!