February the eighteenth: Trinity’s newborn shoot

One of my favorite types of shoots is newborns when the newborns belong to our friends. I don’t know why, I just feel much more comfortable squishing our friends’ babies into cute poses than I do with stranger’s newborns. Weird, huh? 
Trinity was splendid all afternoon. She slept soundly almost the entire time and let us dress and undress and headband and re-headband her the whole time. And did I mention she’s so little and squishy? I want to go back and do a whole second shoot with her because she was so darn cute!


January the 16th

We had fun with Jen, Justin, and Zoey doing Baby #2’s photo shoot. Zoey was a leeeeetle crazy, but not so much that we couldn’t get a few real smiles out of her. She seems to have gone from super duper shy and not wanting to look at the camera to super duper fun and thinking it’s a game to not look at the camera. Two is a definitely an interesting age to photograph.

While shopping with my roommates at Barnes & Noble

The following takes place on May 7, between 8:30pm and 8:35pm.

Jordan: That journal cover reminds me of Mandy.

Sonia: Really? I think that one looks more like Jenna.

Jordan: No, when I think of Jenna, I don’t think of so many colors. Like maybe three colors. Bright colors. But just three of them.

Jenna: I like that cover. I would get that.

Jordan: No, it looks like Mandy. Look, this is what you look like.

Jordan: Only with pinks.

Jenna: Really? I would think that would look like Mandy. 

Sonia: I think that one looks like Jenna, too.

Jenna: Here’s mine! (Holds up a journal entitled Keep Calm and Eat a Cupcake.)

Jordan: No, here’s Jenna for sure.

Jenna and Sonia: Oh, yeah…

Jordan: See? Three colors. Oh, here’s another one that’s totally Jenna!

Sonia: No, that’s Jordan!

Jordan: (Looks at the book.) Oh, yeah, you’re right.

Yes. This is a true account of a Friday night spent at the mall. We analyzed each other’s personalities using journal covers at the bookstore.

I like those girls.

It’s 2010!

Top: Breanna’s boyfriend, Justin, Brandon, Lily, Jesse
Bottom: Breanna, Jenafer, Jordan, Chris

We rang in the year with some of my favorite people!

Jen and Justin are all moved into their fabulous new house, and with some prodding, they decided to have New Year’s at thier house… and invite a whole bunch of us over to celebrate too. We had snacks, drinks (Jesse created a new drink: the Melted Slurpee), and played Catch Phrase until we were sick with laughter (and the drinks). (“Lady who helps people… Mother Teresa!”… “It means crazy, and… and… the other word for ‘it’… Wild Thing!”)

Awesome. I love my old friends.

Woot! New year ahead!

December Staycation: Day Three

Hello, blogger people! Allow me to show you around the Getty Villa, which is the location of our third staycation day.

Here’s something cool about the Villa: You’re not allowed to bring your own umbrellas, because they supply them for you. At every single door, there are bins of umbrellas. When you go inside one of the buildings, you simply drop off the one you were using, and when you exit, you pick up a new one. So instead of seeing all kinds of ugly umbrellas and slipping all over puddled and muddy museum floors, you just see pretty matching khaki umbrellas and you’re feet say in one place on the floor.

The above picture is the view from the main entryway, through the main hall, through the middle courtyard (where the statues are), and out the other door, where you can just kind of make out a fountain, which is flanked on both sides with these statues:

The best part was watching him try to hold this pose.

And here we have another of the Chris’, except this one is actually Kris. With a K. He’s the only individual of the group. 

Here, Ryan and I re-enact our infamous TGO/buddies pose from a similar time at a fountain in February.

This is Kris’ wife, Becky. Becky, as you can see, has beautiful curly hair that I’m jealous of. 

This is my hair curly. I know you feel my pain.

The umbrellas are a bit blown out here, but they’re realky a pretty tan color, kind of like the rolled up standing umbrellas in the background. 

We went on a guided tour, complete with little headsets, and learned all about Getty himself, and why he collected things, and how he got so many things he had to build a separate building to house them for all the people to come and see. And that’s how we got here today.

Irony is using your camera phone to take pictures when you have a beautiful Rebel camera hanging around your neck.

This is one of the outside gardens. At either ends of the pool are naked statues. After exploring the entirety of the Villa museum, it seems naked people statues were very popular in Greek culture. 

While we were standing under this awning thing, taking cutesy couple pictures, this photographer guy came up and posed us “better” for the pictures Kris was taking. Thanks, random photographer guy.

We also got some cutesy pictures on the steps outside the main entrance.

Umbrellas make for good props.

So our day at the Getty was rainy, non-slippery, and full of naked statues. While I’m not a huge museum fan overall, it definitely was an interesting place to spend a few hours. I think a non-rainy day would have been more fun to explore the grounds though. Next time, I suppose.

After the Getty, Chris, Ryan, and I went back to Sarah’s apartment to settle in for the evening. We stopped for Peruvian food, which was good, but pricey, then made it back to her place right when the rain was really getting crazy. The rest of the day was spent watching TV, making Pioneer Woman’s pear crisp dessert (in which we had get to get creative, substituting crushed pecans with bran cereal– Chris’ idea), and stringing some new jewelry (me). It was a nice cozy night, just resting up for our final day of Staycation… Disneyland!

Second Annual Thanksgiving Overnighter and Subsequent Black Friday of Awesomeness

Second annual. Woot! I like making new traditions.

Thanksgiving was an interesting affair this year. Normally what happens is I call up my parents, figure out what we’re doing, when, where, and who’s going to bring what. I make food, clean the house, the fam comes over for a bit, we watch a few episodes of some old time TV program like The Andy Griffith Show (courtesy of me and whatever season I gave my dad for his birthday that year), and then they go home. Holiday over, no real conversation necessary.

Or my parents decide they want to go out for Thanksgiving and we try to go to Boston Market. It’s usually too crowded so we end up at some hole in the wall breakfast place for their Thanksgiving special. Those are the years I’m thankful for a good stock of Dennison’s chili at home, where my sister and I go back for a real holiday meal.

This year, my roommate Brittany decided she wanted to do a dinner for those of us whose family’s are too far or not celebrating that day (i.e. Ryan and me). She went and got the turkey, Ryan brought (Boston Market’s!) mashed potatoes and corn, and I tried my hand at a Pioneer Woman recipe: Roasted carrots

And, because I want to be just like Pioneer Woman when I grow up, I take pictures of my step-by-step cooking process. 

Except my kitchen pictures don’t come out looking nearly as nice as hers. It’s kind of not fair.



While the carrots came out tasting fine, mine weren’t the mouth watering vegetable goodness the recipe promised. But then again, I didn’t use fresh thyme so maybe that’s where I went wrong.

No matter. Ryan still looked excited about the carrots, fresh thyme be damned.

The overnighter started after dinner when we popped in season four of NCIS and the three of us settled in for the night with our laptops at the ready and the Union Tribune ads strewn about the floor.

Colleen and her roommate Ashley came by for awhile, as did Boy Jordan, and then finally Sonia and Lauren, who were participants in the first annual overnighter last year.

Although the troops this year were fewer, we managed to stay awake all night this time. In fact, Sonia thought I was lying when I told her it was 3:30 a.m., and we were all still wide awake and talking. We watched the movie Fireproof (great premise, but cheeseball acting), talked about boys (yeah, that means you, OSF!), and Ryan dozed on the couch (I think trying not to listen to us talk about boys). Russ and Jen came in around 4 a.m., having stayed up all night as well, and needing motivation to make it the rest of the way.

We split up into Team Best Buy and Team Wal-Mart and hit the road at 4:45. Sonia and I, on Team BB, thought it wiser to wait out the line in the heated car, as we reviewed our lists:

Best Buy was amazingly organized as usual. We got all five of the things on Sonia’s list, then met Team WM at Target. 

The Target was absolutely ridiculous. The line pretty much went around the store twice. The good thing was that there were five of us, so it was easy to wander off and browse during the hour and a half wait in line, with at least two people guarding the cart at all times. But it was still pretty rough going, as Sonia demonstrates here:

And here we are, with the end of the line in sight, which accounts for our bright smiles (well, that and the Starbucks)! Poor Ryan, though. Actually, I’m pretty sure he’s faking exhaustion here, because after we all went home and crashed, he went shopping at Fashion Valley (What?! Who goes to the biggest mall in San Diego on Black Friday?!) and then up to Costa Mesa for another Spring Awakening. Who is this guy?

After Target, Sonia, Lauren, and I did a quick stop at Michael’s for beads and frames, then it was home for naps, much to everyone’s relief. I hadn’t been looking for anything big anyway, and I found nearly all the little gifts on my list- only have Ry left to buy for now!

"Nobody likes you, Everyone left you…

… they’re all out without you…

Such a mocking song… that was in American Idiot the Musical!

Saturday of our musical road trip extravaganza, we woke up, checked Ryan’s computer for directions to our next adventure, and packed up and piled in the cars to head to Berkeley, California. 

Berkeley is really cute. I kind of wish I’d gone to college there. Just for the cute town.

American Idiot was play at the Berkeley Repertory Theater, a really awesome, very modern looking, theater along a whole row of theaters just down the street from the university.

In the spirit of my OSF Chris, who steals nearly all of his demonstrative pictures from online (or from me), here’s a pic of the Berkeley Rep I found online: 

We were sitting on the closest side, but it’s mirrored from the side you can see here. Chris and I were seated in that first “balcony” on stage left, and the others were seated front row underneath us. The theater overall is very small, so we would have had good views from nearly anywhere. 

Outside the theater, we wait for the show to start. Chris flashes our tickets:

We pose at the sign.

All right, here’s some more Chris-style (aka, not mine) pictures of the actual show:

This one’s mine! I am the queen camera smuggler! Well, only at final bows when the ushers aren’t watching anymore.

And the OSF, as he waits for Ryan and I to have our fill of talking with John! Gallagher! Jr.!

Do you know the way to San Jose?

Because we do! In fact, that’s where we are right now!

Road Trip 2009 has begun. Faithful readers may remember a brief mention awhile back about Ryan’s brilliant idea to travel north for a viewing of Spring Awakening (which we all know is our favorite) and a new musical based on Green Day’s American Idiot songs (which just so happens to feature three actors from the New York Broadway cast).

Well, the weekend has finally come. The others began their day by meeting us in Anaheim at seven this morning, but Chris and I came up a day early to celebrate his birthday at Disneyland (and collect $72 in Disney money since he’s got a pass). We both had to work the first part of the day, so making it up for our 3:30 Blue Bayou reservation was a little stressful… but luckily we made it with ten minutes to spare! (Unluckily we chose not to use those spare ten minutes to run to Space Mountain for fast passes, but that’s a different story.)

The Blue Bayou was pretty fantastic. Expensive. But fantastic. It’s a nice break from the hustle of the park, and any place that keeps bringing me rolls and butter is a happy place for me. Because of the price, we split a main meal- the jambalaya dish- which was excellent, and came with one of my new favorite restaurant salads (even rivaling Olive Garden’s!). Chris got a chocolate mousse automatically for being born on that day, so I ordered tiramisu (which is what he really wanted), and we switched. Well, the waitress knew what our plan was, I think, and she switched them when she came back to the table, and put the birthday candle in Chris’ tiramisu (which came in an adorable ceramic Mickey Halloween cup that Chris then had to carry around the rest of the day).

Sadly, when we had finished and made it back to Tomorrowland, the fast passes were all gone. Dang it. So we had to wait in line for an hour and a half to go on the new and improved Halloween style Space Mountain. Which really wasn’t that great, and actually kind of demonic feeling for Disneyland.

We hit up Haunted Mansion next, and we saw the cutest Halloween costume ever on a little kid in the elevator. He was dressed like Boo from Monsters Inc., and all you could see was his little face peeking out from the blue monster outfit. He. Was. Adorable. That is totally going to be my kid’s first costume. (Yes, Jedi got bumped to second.)

So that was our first day of vacation. This morning we met the others at Disneyland and headed up to San Jose. Got here in record time, and now we’re all just chilling and starting to get ready for dinner and then the amazing Spring Awakening tour cast. We’ve got our cute theater clothes, our Spring Awakening books, multi-colored Sharpies, and the hopes to get upgraded to better, closer, and maybe even onstage, seats!

Announcement! Announcement!

Christmas is coming! Christmas is coming!

The Christmas Announcement Party was simply splendid this year. Just a nice October evening spent celebrating the arrival of everyone’s favorite holiday. (Except mine. My favorite holiday’s my birthday.)

The CAP, for those not in the know yet, is a celebration started by Jarrod’s family from way back when he was just a little tyke. Over the years, Jarrod’s spread it to our group of friends, and we’ve held it every October for the past four years. 

It’s magical.

For whatever reason, this particular year’s gifts were much funnier than years past. Hence, pictures of everyone in their most joyous Christmas moods.

Co, Kim, and Brad watch David open a gift.

Apparently it was really funny. Jess thought so, anyway.

Oh! Just kidding, David hasn’t even opened it yet. Apparently it’s just the process that’s 
cracking everyone up.

Okay, I do remember what happened here. Justin stole Genessee’s phone and was sending out fake texts to people in her contacts, including the youth pastor. Good thing Gen’s got a sense of humor.

Woot! It’s me and the OSF! This guy went to the mat for me during the gift exchange; he stole the only good gift of the lot, a fluffy soft blanket that everyone wanted- especially me!

Playing with the gifts. In this case, those foam sea creatures that form in water. 
They didn’t work.

Co didn’t come in an ugly Christmas sweater, but he made up for it with the hat.

More gift opening with Tori and David.

Oh, Ryan Poole, you can hold up the gift you picked all you want, but no one wants to steal it from you.

And yet somehow he ended up with another silly gift to try to pawn off on other people.

Ryan Cerutti became the proud owner of a leftover party favor candle from 
David and Tori’s wedding in 2006!

And we’ll end our Christmas festivities with a classic David portrait:

Merry Christmas (in October)!