Thursday, December 31, 2015

Year End Roundup (whoops...)

So, 2015 is drawing to a close. This is the year I've been terribly neglectful of this blog. (Sorry, my little blog...) I'll be honest, I often wonder if what I write ever reaches anyone, or if I even want it to reach anyone. I do know that it reaches my sister-in-law and her friend Lou (Hi, Lou! Thanks for reading!), and that makes me happy. This is all just my random thoughts and pictures, and if other people enjoy what goes on in my weird little mind, I am honored.

So, because I'm not sure how else to wrap the year up, let's have a little roundup of the haps around here since July. (Whaaaaaat??)

Mumford and Sons

In August, James and I went to see Mumford and Sons at the Forum in Los Angeles. We saw them a couple of years ago at an outdoor venue and let me tell you, it was EXACTLY what we needed to hear at that time in our lives. That experience reminded me of what music can do to your life, and I couldn't wait to relive the moments by seeing the band again. It didn't disappoint, the concert was amazing and I didn't want it to end. (The image above is my screensaver on my phone, so I can look at it every day.) I'm not as into Wilder Mind as I'd like to be, and I missed some of the songs from Sigh No More that they played last time, but hey, artists gonna be artists, man. Big love, bro. (haha)


The day we saw Mumford and Sons was also the day that James lost his childhood cat, Nona, a truly sweet feline soul that will be missed always. I have mourned our cat losses deeply, and although I feel a little silly, I'm sure any of you who have pets can relate - they become a part of your family and once gone, you miss them and your family is never quite the same. I knew the last time I was in England that that was the last time I would see Nona, but it hurt just the same. My college years are filled with memories of hanging out in James's room, lit with candles, eating dinner, drinking wine, and Nona curled up on his futon bed, purring and stamping and dribbling (a sort of unfortunate happy habit she had). I also remember a rather unfortunate incident involving a candle and Nona's fluffy tail...

Downton Abbey. The closest we could get to it that day as the grounds were closed to the public.

In late September, James and I paid a quick visit to family in England for a cousin's wedding. (The wedding venue happened to be quite close to Highclere Castle aka Downton Abbey, and we managed to snag a quick visit to the grounds. However, they were triumphantly closed to the public that day, but the nice men working there let us walk as far as the public footpath, snap a quick photo of the top of the house, and turn around and walk right out again.) Visits are never long enough, and we can never spend quite as much time with all of the friends and family we have over there. It's a nice dilemma to have, except it leaves us feeling tremendously guilty that we're not seeing everyone or spending enough time with everyone - not exactly what you want on a vacation! We spent our first few days around Baisingstoke, landing on Friday night and attending the wedding the following day. It all felt slightly surreal, which, if you've ever experienced jet lag, you'll totally get. We ran around like crazy in London the following week and a half, trying to see as many people as possible. These trips are always fraught with many tears from me, because I miss everyone and everything so terribly.

LOOK. I'm really in London. NOT crying.

As soon as we returned to California, preparations were under way for craft shows! James was going to sell his cards at a local Saturday boutique, and I was accepted into Jackalope Art Fair, a juried 2-day art fair in Pasadena. The dates just happened to fall on the same day and were in two different cities. Plus, the second day of Jackalope was on our 7 year wedding anniversary. So we celebrated a little differently this year, but hey, that's what you do when you're a creative couple! We still had time for a few cuddles.

7 Year Anniversary at Jackalope Art Faire

In between everything, my dad participated in a woodworking show and was awarded 2nd place for his entry. (Yay!!) Also, my grandmother turned 90 and she, my mom and I went to see The Sound of Music in Los Angeles.

My dad's awesome carving. We are a creative family. BOOM.

Selfie with Grandma

And then...full steam ahead into the holiday season! I am quite adamantly NOT creating anything new and really putting everything on the back burner. I've joined the Academy of Handmade Artists and Supporters, and I feel terrible that my application acceptance has coincided with this massive burnout I'm feeling, but I'm confident that I'll regain artistic steam in the new year.

And at this point I have no more pictures to share with you. (Sorry.) But, that will all change in 2016. The times, they are (hopefully) a-changing.

Misc Notes:

Also, at some point we went to see Run River North at the Barclay Theater in Irvine, although I honestly can't remember when that was. I do remember it was the last night we sat out on the patio before it got a little too chilly to do that, and we ended up drinking wine and beer on the patio until about 1am, a rarity for us in our dotage!

Also, my friend Kathy in Australia, diagnosed with Stage IV Melanoma (NOT good) has been on these experimental treatments and has experienced what I think is no less than an absolute miracle - she's now without any sign of illness!! Hooray x 1,000,000,000,000!!!!!!!!!

On that note, I wish everyone a happy, healthy and peaceful new year! May you all experience your own miracles, whatever they may be.

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