Monday, September 26, 2011

I knew if I left that Halloween background up, it would eventually be good again ;)

Hey there! 

How've you been?

Me, I've been good.  I only GRADUATED!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Ya, that's right :)  I am officially DR. Skogen and Scott is officially relieved!

Whew, I thought it would never happen but I buckled down and spent the last year writing, re-writing, formatting, defending, and publishing my dissertation.  It's about a really awesome cellist, Laszlo Varga, and his multi-cello ensemble writing.

The official title is:
The Multi-Cello Ensemble Writing of Laszlo Varga: A Study of His Arrangements for Multi-Cello Ensemble of the Adagio con Variazione for Cello and Orchestra by Ottorino Respighi. 

did I sound nerdy enough? Good :)

Anyways, since it is done, we have been up to some really cool things, including starting paperwork for adoption!  Scott and I are excited to announce that we are going to adopt! So if you know anyone that is looking for a great adoptive couple, please tell them about us.  We have lots of love to give and it is about time we had our own child to spoil (no worries to all of our nieces and nephews we will of course still spoil you-it is too much fun!)

With that, we will be updating this blog and starting a separate blog specifically focused on our adoption process/journey/adventure...I like adventure, let's go with that.  We are busy working on it now, with the help of Scott's sweet sister
We also won a credit to this great blog designer who will use her talents to make it amazing!  How cool is that?!!

So please spread the word and check back as we update you on the cool things we have been up to and as we get our adoption adventure blog going.

P.S.  Can I say how happy I am that it is time for pumpkins again!

Monday, September 27, 2010

Fall Favorite Gift Exchange

I participated in my first blogging gift exchange and it was fun!!
It was set up by Every Crafty Endeavor, who has a great blog full of cute craft ideas - go check her out.

We were each paired up and told to assemble a box of goodies that represent what we love most about Fall.

Oh my word, where to start?!? I love so many things!

Of course I had to start with PUMPKINS, as most of you know my obsession with them!

{an obsession that may or may not have resulted in a fender bender, because I may or may not have been distracted by the BEST pumpkin patch ever- that's all I'll say on that ;)}

What would the crisp cool days of Fall be with out a daily Hot Chocolate fix [read: addiction]

You know I had to include some hot chocolate in the box (the good kind too)

I had so much fun putting my box together. I shopped, I gathered, and I even crafted!!!

shocked ya a little on that one didn't I? yup I craft some cool stuff now; I've got some skillz

or at least I like to think I do ;)

My blogging swap partner was Laura who has the cutest family and some mad sewing skillz.

I will post what I sent after she has gotten it so that I don't spoil the surprise

No worries though because look what came in the mail today!!!

My box from Laura, and it is A-MAZ-ING!!!!!!!!

Check it out: I'm soooo excited!! What is inside?


Here it is all spread out, I just can't stop looking at it all!!

First she gave me the recipe and ingredients for some delicious s'mores bars.

If you have ever gone camping with me during Girls Camp then you know I LOVE s'mores!

I am excited to try this recipe out and think I will make it for our next game night with these cool people/fellow sugar addicts :)

I have a collection of Halloween socks and these will be perfect to add to it! I will wear them on the first day in October this Friday, what a perfect way to kick off a month of Halloween :)

And my FAVORITE item of them all: This Oh So cute Apron that Laura Made!!!!!!

Check out the adorable fabric!
Did you see the gorgeous ruffles!!
I love the Halloween theme!
And don't forget to notice the cute polka-dot pocket!!

I have already tried it on and it looks PERFECT!

I'm thinking I may have to wear this everyday, whether I am cooking or not.

Just sayin' you may come over to find me grading or practicing in this apron; a little dissertation writing in it even. I'm telling you it is sooooo cute it works for everything!! :)

I am in love!


Thank you for the beautiful gifts!! I appreciate them greatly and think you are quite talented at sewing!!

I can't wait to wear my socks and apron [I do have to grade later, it will be worn ;)] and can't wait to try out my new recipe!!

It has been fun getting to know you through your blog and I look forward to continue building a friendship :)

I hope you like your box too, though I'll warn you, my crafting skillz are no where near as cool as yours!

I hope you all enjoyed checking out the cool swap! What was your favorite item from the box?

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

Hello Again!

Well, it has been a long time since my last post.
And by long time of course I mean a year and a half ;)
I promise the time was not wasted, in the last year I've been to:
NYC (several times)
and my favorite trip ... Scotland!!
by the way Nessie is real and I've seen her!
I've been to one sisters wedding (Scotland) and am getting ready for another sisters wedding.
I've met Oprah!
It's true, she put her hand on Scott's shoulder and asked him how he was.
He was good :)
I've watched and photo stalked
Lauren Graham
Oliver Platt
Christopher Walken
Angela Lansbury
in several Broadway shows.
(no worries, the photos were at the backstage door afterwards, with the rest of the crazy fans...yes, I totally recognize I was one of them...but it was so much fun!)
My hard drive crashed and then my computer had to be rebuilt. Thank goodness for friends who are computer geniuses!
I've sorted through most every box, bag, and paper in the great housecleaning of 2010 in an effort to de-clutter.
are you sitting down for this one?...
I've been working on my DISSERTATION!!!
I know, even I didn't know if that one was going to happen. But it is happening and soon I will be done!! I can't wait!
For now I'm just glad to be back and hope you are too :)

Friday, March 6, 2009

Fun Giveaway!

My dear friend Katie is doing a give away over at her site MiaMoo designs. She makes the best hair clips and headbands for babies and adults. You have to be one of the first three to leave a comment on her giveaway post so hurry over there. Then make sure to post about it to your blog! I've already left the first comment, as I've had my eye on this headband!

Only two spots left!
Either way check out all of her cool/cute creations and buy something great!
P.S. I showed you my favorite, leave a comment telling me which item on the site is your favorite.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Blog Surfing

Growing up in Southern California, I always wanted to learn how to surf. I just never had the opportunity to do so. However that dream is still there. One day I am going to learn. Hmmm, maybe a trip to Hawaii is in order to take some surf lessons ;)

Anyways, I have become very skilled at blog surfing. I start on a blog I like and then look at links they have to other interesting blogs, which in turn leads to more links and more interesting blogs. You get the picture.

While blog surfing off of Tip Junkie, I came across this great blog: The Pretty Neat Company

I am hooked! I love this blog. Why, because it is creative and the focus is on organization.

wait, before you laugh....

Yes, I am NOT organized

I am what you may call "organizationally challenged"

Well, to give myself some credit, let me say "selectively organized"

When it comes to work, I am very organized. When it comes to music, again, I am very organized. Even the folders on my laptop are organized. But that is it, the organizational buck stops here.

At home, I am a MESS! Yup, I can admit it, I am the least organized person I know when it comes to my house. My office: a pile of boxes and books {has great potential though}

It is not an unclean mess, I clean and scrub, I just clutter. Piles of paper, laundry, and projects abound. Granted each item has it's own organized pile - no dissertation papers in the sock pile ;)

I dream of a clutter free house, I aspire to have one, one day I will too - you all will see.

Until that day comes (after this last semester of school-finally) I put up with my piles, knowing the end is in site.

That is why I love this blog! The lady runs a company where she will come and organize a space for you. Even better, she will decorate the space as well!! Her site has all sorts of great tips and suggestions. She even shows examples of some of the houses she has worked on, as well as her own. If I could, I would fly her up to my little neck of the woods and hire her to give my house a complete organizational makeover!

Check out this post, where she describes how she organizes all the paperwork that comes into her house.

And look at this before and after for this clients room:



Amazing right! Give her blog a glance, and let me know, because I need the help, what are some great organization tips you have- I need them!


Disorganized in NC

Wednesday, December 24, 2008


Can I just say that I LOVE CHRISTMAS!!!

I love everything about the season; Christmas music, Christmas movies, Christmas cheer, Christmas shopping!! Does it get any better than this! It is a time in the year when traditions are cherished, people go out of their way to extend joy to one another, and thoughts turn to family and friends.

It's time to bake all the things we save just for this time of year: fudge, peppermint bark, sugar cookies, gingerbread houses (ok so I don't bake the last one but I did try to make one a few years back that may have tilted a lot - ok ok, so it did tilt a lot. It is alright though, I said it was because I am from CA and so I built my rendition of a gingerbread house after an earthquake-whew, good save right?!)

I love to wrap presents and think lots of wonderful thoughts about the person who will receive it. I imagine their excitement at the possibilities of what is to be found under all the beautiful Christmas wrapping as they look at it under the tree. Will the shape/size/weight of the package give away it's contents? How much thought went into each one, the joy of opening it, and what the expression is on their face as they open each gift.

Traditions are a favorite part of the Holidays for me as well. I love to think about traditions we had as children: going to Disneyland hotels Dancing Waters show, walking behind the waterfalls and visiting Santa to tell him what we wanted that Christmas. On the way home we would see who could count the most Christmas lights.

Christmas Eves began at our house with a big brunch, which always included the 12 days of Christmas glasses and some Martinellis Apple Cider. Close family friends came over and we ate and exchanged gifts. The nights were spent at my grandpas house with family. The fireplace would be aglow, while my grandma had the table set festively with name cards for each guest at their seat. After dinner we would gather around the Christmas tree and exchange gifts for each other. The best part of the night was when Santa Claus himself would come and visit!! He would pull open his big red sack and pull out one gift for each of us. We would then watch him go and look for his reindeer in the sky, always a contest to see who saw it first.

The night before Christmas would be one of excitement and anticipation for the next day. My sisters and I would try our hardest to stay awake and listen for Santa's sleigh bells and the sound of the reindeer on the roof. We never snuck out in fear that Santa wouldn't leave anything if we caught him, so we remained glued to our beds with glee, hoping he liked the cookies and milk we set out for him. (we even left carrots for the reindeer)

Christmas morning always began early for us kids :) We would usually sneak out of our rooms at 5 in the morning and to see what Santa had left for us. His gifts were never wrapped. The stockings, no longer on the fireplace, would be full and placed in front of a pile of gifts. We would look through our piles and the contents of each stocking, joyfully showing each other what we received, all the while remembering exactly were everything sat. When we were done we would put it all back the way we found it, go and wake my parents up to come and see what Santa had left, and then pretend like it was the first time we ever saw them (so not to ruin the surprise for my parents!). We would then open our gifts as a family, one at a time in order to enjoy everyone's reaction to each individual gift, and to express our awe at how much thought the giver had put into each one.

Christmas day was filled with lots of visits and food. We would visit our good friends the Myers for lunch and a gift exchange, and then end the evening at my grandmothers house. Her tree was always covered in tinsel and set up in the front hallway. It was the first thing you saw when you walked in the door. I think there may have even been a nativity set up but really all I saw was that great tree! After dinner we would gather around her fireplace, warm and lit up, and exchange gifts with aunts, uncles, cousins, and of course grandma. It was the perfect way to end the day. There was always a feeling of love and the joy of family to make the day complete.

Over the years, traditions changed. People passed away or moved and we had to create new traditions. On of my favorites was spending each Christmas Eve watching A Christmas Carol at South Coast Repertory. We would then go out to dinner at Foscari as a family. Christmas morning we still woke up early, only this time after opening our gifts we had our big brunch on Christmas day. We would then spend the evening at the Myers having dinner and playing trivial pursuit. According to my memory the girls always won (this is according to my memory and may not be an accurate portrayal of what really occurred-just sayin')

Today Scott and I are making our own traditions, it changes a little each year. This year: Christmas Eve Taco night with my sister and sister in law, followed by Christmas movies. The Christmas day brunch with NC family and friends is still on, this time we are hosting! The 12 days glasses will still be there, as well as some fudge and Martinellis. Then there is the new tradition of looking for the pickle ornament, and thanks to Shannon, the red pepper ornament in the tree for extra gifts. Afterwards we are having a relaxing Christmas with our good friends Gina and Thomas playing some Seafarers of Catan.

I'd love to hear about your favorite Christmas traditions/memories. Please leave a comment about it.

Merry Christmas!!!

Friday, October 24, 2008

FIRE in the Frozen Fish section!

This is no joke folks. Little did I know that when I made a quick trip to the grocery store, it would be anything but ordinary! Here's what happened:

I was talking on the phone with my friend Gina, on my way home from work, when I decided to pick up a much needed item {cookie dough :)} at the grocery store.

I was paying careful attention to keeping up my conversation, while looking around the store for my much needed addiction, I mean purchase, when something caught me by surprise...


{at which point I ask, how do you like your fish; grilled, or charbroiled}

The fire was on the inside hinge of one of the glass doors. When I first saw it, it was about one foot in length, creeping north to the ceiling of the section. It must of been electrical since sparks were flying all around, inches from the Gordon Fisherman's fish display, poor Gordon.

Of course I would like to think cooler heads prevailed and that I calmly got the attention of the nearest worker, informed them of the fire, and quickly got out of the way while they put the fire out.

Unfortunately there was a witness to what really happened, Gina. Yes, my phone conversation came back to shed some light on the true order of events.

Here is how it really went down:

1. As I walked by the glass door I noticed the flame, however it was a little shocking to see, not really on the normal agenda of grocery shopping. Needless to say, I may have been in shock somewhat.

According to Gina I interrupted our conversation with the following:

and I quote

"Is that a fire?

That IS a fire?

That can't be a fire?

Is that really a fire?"

Yes I am embarrassed to admit, it took a while to sink in, disbelief was prevalent, and I may have said this all at a very loud volume.

2. Another costumer walked by with his son and heard my, ahem, crazy exclamation and confirmed that it was in fact a fire.

We decided to go for help, I ran one way, he the other. He found someone first. I on the other hand just looked crazy running around the store saying "There is a fire in the frozen fish section!"

3. Two workers came to the scene, only to experience the same shock that I had. They just stood and stared!

Thankfully the other customer had the calm head and ordered the workers to grab a fire extinguisher.

By this time the flames are now running the entire length of the door!

{Smoked Salmon anyone?}

When the worker came back with the extinguisher it was obvious he did not know what to do, so our calm other customer grabbed it from the boys hand, opened the door and sprayed. He then had to open the door next to it and repeat the process.

It worked! The fire was out!

Disaster averted!

As I sat and stared at the scene before me, trying hard not to breath in the copious amounts of smoke that had taken over that section, I realized this:

-I may not have been the one who was calm

-I was not the one who found a worker first

-I wasn't even the one who knew what to do

-I definitely didn't put the fire out saving all nearby from near disaster


I was the one who first saw the fire and drew attention to it, therefore...


The End