Sunday, July 26, 2009

living on the outside

I was reminded by a good friend, via her twitter, that this coming week is CHA summer. I had completely forgotten, or more accurately, have been happily out of the loop, and didn't give a damn.
I officially left the craft industry, professionally that is, a year and a half ago, when I left the magazine. At first it was really difficult. Even though I was pursuing my dream of a full time photography career, I ached for the excitement of a new paper line, the feel of new textured die cuts, the inside scoop of why a company wasn't renewing an artists contract, and the dirty tid bits of what Mormon had gone naughty and was having an affair with what executive. I had scissor withdrawal, if you will......being on the edge of everything, craft and hobby related, was now in the past.
Eighteen months later though, I've never felt freer.....I own my own successful business, I pick clients just as much as they pick me, I have VERY visible tattoos and don't worry about clients seeing them and I can say things like I DON'T GIVE A FLYING FUCK on my blog without worrying about being dragged into some lame-ass eagle scout/vice president's (of a failing company might I add) office and being reprimanded for foul language on my personal blog. I'm no longer a corporate bitch, and there's no nazi's around to look down on me or fire me. I'm my own boss, and a damn good boss if I do say so myself. I love my job. I love my life.
Do I still craft and scrapbook? (many have asked)......I'll be honest--I took a LONG hiatus from scrapbooking. I wasn't interested in it or anything I thought it represented for a long while. It took me nearly as long to realize that it only represents what I want it to though. The average American honestly has no idea what Creative Keepsakes or Making Memories or CardMaker magazines are, and they, like me, FINALLY, couldn't give a flying fuck. There was a point at which I thought it important to be consistantly published in these magazines, to be quoted in editorials, to be "known" by 50,000 or so women......but finally I came back to who I really am. Do I care if THESE women know who I am, or how I create a layout? NO, NO I DON'T. In my career though, I did become friends with ten or so women who changed my life and I love...they're funny, and loud, and not obsessed with pink or teddy bears...they either have tattoos, or really respect those who do...they drink, they swear..some go to church, some don't...some have kids, some don't---but they are all amazing women who from the get go "got" what I didn't....that the industry doesn't matter...but your passion and art and memories do. I wish I got what they did a long time ago. (I couldn't though, because I worked for the industry and became so buried in it that I lost who I was).
Back to my point though---it's CHA this week. I don't plan on looking at any of the new and exciting releases or youtube videos or blogs....if I happen to run into something I like at the store, I'll get it, paying retail (god forbid), and go on my way....and sometime soon, I'll start posting layout again---which don't resemble anything I've done before, because I finally remembered who I was, instead of who "those people" wanted me to be.
I had an engagement shoot today with a great couple. Afterwards, they asked if they could buy me a couple beers. We sat and talked, swore, and laughed.....and this was "work." I thought to myself, God, I'm lucky. A few years ago, I thought I was lucky---but it's not lucky when you come home at night frustrated, crying, hating your boss, your coworkers and everything the company you work for represents. The company I work for now is me, represents me, and encompasses everything I've ever wanted to be. God, I'm lucky.

oh,and those going to CHA...please don't take this as a "scrapbooking sucks" or "I hate CHA" blog---it's not that at all. Have a great time. This is more of a Jerry McGuire-esque blog....continue doing what you do. Just remember to love what you do, have passion for what you do, and smile while doing it, otherwise, it's not worth doing it. And to the stick-up-their-asses, forty-something year old eagle scout, middle-of-nowhere failing company executive.....good luck with that. Your fake enthusiasm and "gag me" holier then thou faith" isn't fooling anyone....including the customers.

peace out.

Thursday, December 04, 2008

a much needed update

so, it's been a while since I posted, so I thought I'd give an update. I've done photography for a few more weddings since my last post, including Elin and John. Here's a few shots from their special day.
I've also did quite a few senior photos this fall. Here's a couple shots of Alex. We had fun doing this one at a couple locations in town, including a train bridge with plenty of fun graffiti.

I've also done a shoot for a friend's art show and a local chef's cooking classes.

On to other news, there's a new addition to our family! Jason and I decided to adopt a new dog shortly after Monty passed away. We certainly weren't trying to replace Monty, but we knew the joy a dog brings, and we know there's so many greyhounds that need homes. That being said, in late October, we adopted Titan. (his racing name was "Mirage," but Jason and I agree that's better suited for strip clubs, and besides, he looks like a Titan....he's a big boy!) He's got more energy then any greyhound I've ever seen and loves to play! We've been having lots of fun with our new doggie.

Jason and I also visited Denver in October, for the Great American Beer Festival. (actually, while we were there we found out we were getting our doggie!) We had a great time at the festival and the pub crawl. One of my best friends also got married while we were in Denver and had a really fun ceremony and reception. (seriously fun---they broke "beer" bottles over eachothers head before their first kiss!) Congratulations Renee and Patrick!
We had a lovely thanksgiving with friends this year, which was great, especially because we didn't have to leave town! And a few short days before Thanksgiving two of our best friend's welcomed their second child into the world, and she's ADORABLE! (just like her mommy)
I hope everyone had a great Thanksgiving and gave thanks to all the blessings in their lives!

Saturday, October 25, 2008

"fall"ing in love

I met a lovely couple today for engagement photos. Brian and Beth are getting married in January. They're getting married at the University of Minnesota Landscape Arboretum and that's where we did the shoot today. The trees and landscape were just beautiful, and the couple was very easy going and fun to work with.

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Sunday, September 28, 2008

RIP good friend

Montgomery Comiskey Kocina
September 9, 2001-September 24, 2008

Thank You for being the most loyal and amazing friend I could ever ask for. I will miss you forever, and carry you in my heart always.

Friday, September 19, 2008

I like heavy cream (and other blog titles you had to be there to understand)

including, "I wanted to be cool, but my husband bought me a Dell"

Another night of ooc fun and ridiculous ensued when Elroy and I went to see Neko Case last night.
So, I got to St. Paul to meet up at Elroy's house a bit after 4, and then we took off in his car from there. We parked near First Ave (where the show was) and headed on foot to find some dinner. We made a joint decision that Fago de Chao was not the answer, as I'm a vegetarian and Elroy is just generally disgusted by it. (but of course if I did eat meat, I would eat there because Ozzie Guillen is a spokesperson, lol), we think about the Mexican chain on the corner, but they're forever. So, we decide chinese might not be so bad so we walk into this little's central asia humid in there though and smells like old oil, so we leave..........then we come across fireside and decide that looks ok. We can't seem to find a hostess anywhere though and all the wait staff is running around in mass confusion (over their 2 tables?) by the time we see a host and look at the menu we we're over it like yesterday's cheese. So we move on...........we passed the farmers market on niccolet mall, where Elroy showed me the "local bananas." We head over to McCormick and Schmick's where I'm sure I'm going to have some overpriced sheeshee fish, but I didn't care at that point...I was hungry. Well, FYI everyone, McCormick and Schmick has a happy hour! Elroy had a $1.95 half pound cheeseburger and fries basket, and I had some salmon croquets and mahimahi cakes for a wopping $4! Now granted, we spent $30 in drinks, but who the hell cares!
Once we left the restaurant we had a good ol' buzz going on and laughed at the flute playing Shania Twain and walked back to First Ave. (unfortunately the photojournalism ends here as there's no cameras allowed in at First Ave) Doors opened at 6, and as it had already passed that time, we were sure we wouldn't get rail spots. We did though, because we're awesome. lol. So, this guy comes around asking if people want to register to vote while they're waiting, which was pretty cool. I'm already registered of course, so I just start talking politics with him and he was very sweet. So, rock the vote boy leaves and suddenly the guy on my right, ironically, turns to be and wants to "educate" me on what's "wrong with Obama" and starts spouting about how Obama wants to put everyone back in the times of the soviet union and he's a socialist and yada yada blah blah. I naturally (um, hello, do I EVER hold back) tell him that he's full of shit and exactly why. This goes on for a good 20 minutes. (Elroy suprisingly doesn't want to kill me)......and while said boy does not take my political advice, he does take my beer reccomendation, so he's not ALL bad, lol.

So, Big Sand opened for Neko. Elroy decided they should just be called "rocks" afterall, isn't that what big sand is? Their lead singer was very Bill Bob Thorton-esque and their guitar player was a striking mix between cromagnum man and bart simpson. Their base player was, as agreed upon by Elroy and me, simply yummy.

Neko came on and was cute as always--her untamed red hair up and down throughout the show. She and her back up singer Kelly Hogan (who I have a girl crush on) visited the humane society earlier in the day, and they dedicated each song to a different animal at the shelter and encouraged everyone to adopt...which made me fall more inlove with both of them. The show was great, and she did 2 encore sets which was extra fabulous. I was also amazed how right wing James knew all the words to her songs, he didn't strike me as the type.

Elroy and I made a dash for cake after the show, because we both needed carbs....and we prefer our carbs covered in chocolate. (although I actually had key lime cheesecake this time)....

as always, a good time.
also as always, this blog has been edited for content, embarrassing moment, and things that we choose not to mention, lol :)

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

Bitch Please (part 2 of 2)

Where was I? oh yes, Amy, Andrea and I had just departed HOB and all the crazy glory that was the Fratelli's show. (see "if it's not Scottish, it's crap blog part 1 for details) We jumped into a cab to go back to Subterranean to meet with Al and Maris. Their show had let out shortly before hand and they were in the downstairs club having a couple cocktails and waiting for the BritPop DJ night to start. (Al's friend Josh....whom Al and my brother and his boyfriend and I had drunken pancakes with some time back was djing coincidentally...we exchanged hugs, yada yada) I went and asked Maris how the show was and of course it was OOC.

Here's me and Maris and Al (oh.....and sidenote--ALL images in this blogity are stolen from Maris because my camera was in my truck--seeing as I couldn't bring it with me to HOB,, thanks Maris, you rock) I'm glowing quite angelically in this picture---SEE, I told you the Fratellis show was a good time.

I see Morgan outside and we have a good laugh over my "verbal assault" via cab on the way to the Fratellis show...and the irony is that HE apologized to ME....god I love those little british boys. Back inside Al reminds me that Does It Offend You, Yeah? is doing a dj set themselves soon--over at Moonshine on Division though, so I need to down my beer so we can skidattle. The cab driver doesn't know where the hell he's going, but then again, apparently neither did we because it was only 3 or 4 blocks, why we didn't just walk I don't know--but whatever, it was only a few bucks.

So we get inside moonshine and they're getting all ready to do their thing and Al and Maris put in their requests with the DIOYY boys, as do I. Al's friend Patrick is there, which is good, because he keeps Al awake and apparently made him forget that he needed to be up just after 5 in the morning the next day, er, that day. We even caught Al breakin out some dance moves...Maris has pictures, but I think I might be flogged by Al if I use those.

Morgan from DIOYY gives me the "quad kiss" (the double double european kiss) and James (the lead singer) later informs me and Maris that this means he "really" likes me. During the first conversation with James (Maris had just introduced us), he also notes, "oh YOU'RE the girl who was yelling at Morgan from a taxi?!?!" (good to know I have a reputation) We had good laughs. We ended up having a good 4 or 5 long convo's with James--and not stalker--we just kept being in the same place at the same time, and please note HE CAME UP TO US several times. (which pretty much made Maris wet herself with excitement) In one of the later conversations he mentioned how he'd been invited on Nevermind the Buzzcocks. (speaking of the Buzzcocks we also talked about how Pete Shelley is just an old queen, dispite being married with children--I had to remind James that Elton John was once married to a woman as well though, so it means little...and we laughed) It's really a great honor and gives him GREAT exposure but he's terrified as traditionally the guests are ripped to shreds in great english comedy fashion and sent away with their tales tucked. Maris and I said that he needn't take it seriously and just needs to have smart ass remarks to whatever they say. James noted that he was worried because he's not quick on the draw with comebacks and will just end up saying, "go on then, just stab me" (which in his adorable accent was pretty much the cutest thing ever)...Maris and I explained that there's one blanket statement that he can use over and over to take the place of a witty comeback, "BITCH, PLEASE" He took to it quite nicely and started practicing it. He even said he was going to give us credit for it, lol. (oh, and James INSISTED that we take these pics several times--and he held the camera too-hello, doll)

After all this was going on, there was a little side show of scary glamazon porn...this beast with a "bad chinatown weave," as Maris so eloquently put it, was literally swallowing this poor emo boy whole. It was a great train wreck though. As gruesome as it was, you just couldn't turn away.

The night HAD to end when this little black boy on crutches walked up and said "you're the most beautiful woman I've ever seen" to me, and we all started laughing at him. I couldn't help it, it was so ghetto sweet and pathetic all at the same time. I had to shoo-shoo crutch, and we got into a cab (once again) to return us to our cars.

By the time I got back to Naper-vile, it was going on 3:30...and Al still needed to drive to Joliet from there. (and bears get CRANKY when they don't get sleep, so I feel for his students the next day).......

as always, there's probably details left out--so intentionally and some forgotten in the haze.

Bitch, Please.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

If it's not Scottish, It's CRAP! (part 1 of 2)

Well over a month ago I asked Al and Marissa if they wanted to go to the Fratellis show in September, but unfortunately their dance card was already full for that night, seeing another show. Their friend Amy really wanted to see the show however and said she'd go with me, so it was a go. Amy and I had some miscommunication and each thought we were supposed to be buying the tickets, so we ended up with 4. It worked out okay though, as I ended up asking Andrea if she'd like to join us.

I drove down to Illinois the day before the show. (another blog, lol)..Al met me at my folks place on wednesday afternoon and we drove into the city together, picking Andrea up on the way. The 3 of us met up with Maris and Amy at Earwax (which has yummy vegetarian good....most of the time) Al oggled the waitor and Maris and I took silly pictures of each other. It wasn't until the ride into the city that I realized the concert Al and Maris were going to see was Does It Offend You, Yeah? I was suddenly very sad and torn, as I love DIOYY but I also love the Fratellis. He made it a little better by saying that DIOYY would be hosting a dj set afterwards, so we should make it back for that.

So, off we went--Amy and Andrea and I. Just after we jumped in the cab, I see Morgan, from DIOYY walking down the street. I rolled down the window, screaming "Morgan!!!" He was frightened and confused and it was beautiful---I yelled to him that we wouldn't make the show but would see him afterwards and that Al and Maris were already there. (I found out later that he already knew this) So, we continue giggling and head to the HOB.

We get to the HOB and through their ridiculous security, only to find that it's an all ages show....filled with hundreds of little teeny boppers. I wanted to vomit. (actually I wanted to punch some people, but for good reason). It was about 15 minutes into the 1st opener when we arrived, so sadly we weren't against the stage on the "fuck rail".....some little snatch faced bitches were in said spot. So Amy and I are chatting between a couple songs, and one of said snatch faced bitches turns her barbie head around, looks at Amy and me and says in her Evanston meets the Valley voice, "like excuse me, there's a concert going on"'s on bitch. I quickly respond back, "this isn't mozart in the park, plus it's past your bedtime. go home." She snapped her air filled head back around....which is good, because if she had looked at me for one more second there would have been an imprint of my hand on her head. (apparently she was really into the openers-opener...yeah, as in "not even good enough to be on the ticket or marquee.") So, the second band takes the stage and Amy starts to have a little spastic groupie dance brew in her's really quite cute. She really likes Airborne Toxic Event. Midway through their set I asked Amy if she'd mind going upstairs to avoid the ever increasing crowd of pubescent on the floor. She agreed to do so after their set. So, we escaped the kiddyland and headed up to the balcony level. We found a spot to stand that wasn't great, but it had a good view of the stage, and better yet, everyone around us was at least 25. perfect. We struck up a conversation with this lovely couple, Mark and Kathy, and shared our experience with the aforementioned snatch faced bitch. They found it quite entertaining and shared their annoyance with the crowd. Mark was a dead ringer for Hugh Grant...and not in a vague a "hi, I'm Hugh Grant" (in an english accent of course) and I would have believed him....crazy. (side note, Kathy says they hear that all the time and have gotten stopped for autographs and sometimes Mark goes along with it--which I loved)

So, the Fratellis take the stage and we're dancing and singing, and I look over to my right to smile at our new friends, and they're gone! if they were a figment of my imagination. I shrug my shoulders and went along singing. Half way through the next song a hostess comes and taps me on my shoulder and says, "would you like to sit in a private opera box?"
"um, yes, yes I would" (and of course I'm thinking---what the fuck? someone loves me) She leads the three of us into not just any private opera box, but one on the far right of the stage, inside the curtains, practically on top of the stage. In said opera box are Mark and Kathy, sporting mischievous smiles. I don't know how they scored this and I don't want to. (although secretly I think Mark played the Hugh Grant card) We're giddy with our new accommodations and are closer to the stage even then those little twats down on the fuck rail.....which by the way, Barbie twat, looked up at one point, sees Amy and me and we could see the rage on her face...we quickly lowered our maturity level and flipped her off. It was great, really. (I'd show you a picture of the view, but my worthless cell phone won't send me the pictures--and the HOB has a strict no "real" camera policy, and I hate them for it)

Chelsea Dagger came on and we jumped and danced, and our box of happiness (hey, get your head out of the gutter--the opera box) pointed at me every time the chorus came on..........and if I haven't mentioned it yet, they mention my name in 3, yes 3 was meant to be.

So, we (along with a good deal of the crowd) are yelling "I love you" and "Scotland rocks" etc etc (they're from Scotland, der)...and at a quieter moment I take it upon myself (I take lots of things upon myself after a few beers--this is a trend at shows, no?) to scream, "FREEDOM!!!" (ala Braveheart if you didn't pick that up)...Jon Fratelli hears me, looks up at the box and says, "fuck yeah" hi, best moment EVER!!! Before the show was over we had a nice chorus line of kicks in the box as well. Directly below me was the sound guy with a set list at his side, so we knew exactly what was coming next the whole time....he looked up at me at one point, as to show me the set list---we had a moment. We practically made out.

So, they come on for 2 more songs, and then it was over........kinda. At the HOB there's the velvet curtain which closes, so you can't see the roadies break down...that is unless you're INSIDE the velvet curtain, which low and behold our box was. I yelled to my new sound guy boyfriend that I wanted the set list, and he jumped on top of a speaker to give it to his Rapunzel. The roadies continued to break down, and we decided to press our luck....why just get one set list when you can have ALL SIX............uh huh, exactly. Yeah, we did. :)

We finally said goodbye to Mark and Kathy, and left HOB, jumping in a cab to head back over to Subterranean to meet Al and Maris, and add more fun and OOC ridiculous to our night.

TO BE CONTINUED..........................................
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