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Hi there! I just realized that the journal that's been sitting on my front page is over a year old. Many exciting stuffs and thingies have happened since then! This last year I've:
  • Graduated Kendall College with a degree in Illustration!
  • Started grad school at Hartford Art School
  • Gotten married (I'll be Alyssa Menold as soon as the paperwork all goes through)
  • Turned around and went straight back to Kendall to teach as an adjunct
Some things haven't changed, though . . . I just looked down at the little status for food/drink/etc that sits at the bottom of the journal and realized that the only thing that's changed is the TV show. I'm eating the exact same meal and everything. Freaky.

  • Listening to: Cake
  • Watching: Bob's Burgers
  • Playing: World of warcraft way, way too much
  • Eating: toast
  • Drinking: sweet, sweet coffee
I only have a couple weeks left of school! I'm super excited! Maybe the crazy hectic pace of my life will ease up for a bit, at least for a couple weeks--I haven't had almost any time for deviantart, which makes me a little sad since I follow some awesome people and I know I've been missing out on a lot that they've done this past year.

In other news, I've been awarded the Illustration excellence award and named Valedictorian! I was more excited about this before I found out I had to give a speech. I've never actually been to a graduation, so I'm not sure what graduation speeches are made of . . . I'm hoping youtube will have some examples I cobble together into a nice, generic short speech that won't make me look too silly :P

Ok, back into the homework pile for me! If I emerge in one piece, I should have lots of new art by the end of the month.
  • Listening to: Cake
  • Watching: Top gear
  • Eating: toast
  • Drinking: sweet, sweet coffee
My painting Jackie and the beanstalk got a Daily Deviation :D! So happy! Thank you everyone for all your wonderful comments!
  • Watching: doctor who
  • Eating: bratwurst
  • Drinking: CAFFEINE
Semester is over! Stuff is happening! Art is being made! Yay! Also, I finally got around to tackling dreamweaver, and I built myself a website over here ! Check it out if you have a moment :). I post commissioned portrait stuff over there that I don't have on deviantArt. I also just set up a facebook page here… where I'll have work in progress photos and all that fun stuff.

As soon as I get a sunny day, I'll be heading up the coast of lake Michigan to take pictures of lighthouses and scope out good painting spots. I'm really interested in doing more landscape stuff, so hopefully I'll be posting some of that this summer in between summer classes :).
  • Watching: Legend of Korra
  • Eating: Cookies!
  • Drinking: Coffee
I got into the society of illustrators! Yay! My painting (…) is going to New York!

Getting in was a bit of a surprise. On Monday morning I woke up to find an email listing the accepted entries. Mine wasn't one of them, so I had myself a little sniffle, bought myself some consolation coffee (with extra chocolate), and went on with my day. Later that night I got a facebook message congratulating me on getting in. I double checked the accepted entries list, and surprise! My painting 'Surprise!' had gotten in :). I'll admit it's not my favorite of the paintings I entered, but at this point I'm too high on happiness to care.

Also, I'm turning 21 in a few days! My drinking will soon be legal :D!
  • Watching: Psych
  • Eating: Celebratory fudge!
  • Drinking: Celebratory coffee!
The summer semester is over! I'm actually kind of sad--this has been the best semester yet. I thought the seven hour classes would be difficult, but they were a lot of fun.

I'll be wandering around the country for a bit before the fall semester starts, but I'll also be trying to get some more art done done. There's so much I want to paint, and so little time! I guess that's what coffee is for :)
  • Listening to: Styx
  • Watching: Top gear
  • Eating: Celebratory bacon and ice cream!
  • Drinking: coffee
Summer is here! Almost! It's not really summery outside right now (it snowed! In April! Michigan is awesome!), but I've got a bag full of easter candy and an empty schedule, so all is right in my world.

I signed up for summer classes again this year, but this time they're both studio classes, which means I have one class from 8:30 to 4:00 on M/W, and another for the same time on T/TH. Not sure how my attention span will hold up to a 7 1/2 hour class, but I guess I'll find out :)
  • Eating: cadbury eggs!
  • Drinking: the fillings of cadbury eggs!
So, about a million years ago HosekiDragon tagged on one of her journal entries, and I'm just getting around to it (sorry, HosekiDragon! I don't even have a good excuse, other than being terminally lazy). The rules are that I have to write a list of ten things about myself, so:

1. I'm the proud owner of a titanium spork.

2. For most of my life I wanted to be a veterinarian or some other kind of medical professional. Then I discovered I didn't like blood. Or needles. Or anything relating to medicine.

3. My favorite animal is the mimic octopus. If you haven't seen one in action, google it! NOW!

4. I kinda wish I owned a (neutered) tribble.

5. My laptop is covered in tape and oil paint. It looks so disgusting my graphic design teacher won't even touch it.

6. I'm starting to enjoy painting still lifes. I think this might be the first sign of insanity.

7. I came to Kendall because of a scholarship that I got during a portfolio review in Albuquerque. All of the materials for Kendall's booth had gotten lost on the flight over from Michigan, and their sad, naked little picnic table looked so ugly that no one was standing in their line. Since I hate lines, I went there first, and now here I am . . .

8. I was born on my mom's birthday.

9. It's my birthday!

10. It's also my mom's birthday! Happy birthday, mom!

Since I don't really feel like tagging anyone specific, if you want to list ten things about yourself, consider yourself tagged!
  • Listening to: metallica
  • Watching: start trek
  • Eating: birthday pizza!
And I'm FREEEEEEEEE!!!!!!! On top of lots of cool art stuff, I've learned:

-that I can roast marshmallows over a candle!

-that I shouldn't try to extinguish flaming marshmallows over expensive electronic equipment.

-that I can go 48 hours without sleep!

-that I shouldn't contact potential employers after going 48 hours without sleep.

-that someone, somewhere, makes fish-shaped briefcases.

All of my classes were awesome, except for one (on our first test, an entire letter grade depended on our being able to list the names of every one else in the class. Those of you who know me will know how traumatic that was).  I have a full schedule lined up for next semester, so I'm stocking up on sleep while I can. I'm  also hoping to work on some art over the break—we'll see how that goes.

Have a happy [insert holiday or day of the week here] everyone, and I hope all of your lives are full of puppies and sparkly things!
  • Listening to: Christmas music!
  • Watching: better off ted
  • Eating: grapefruit
  • Drinking: tea
Well, my summer classes are over :D! Math was a lot easier than I'd expected—normally I kind of struggle with it, but I had an amazing teacher (if anyone reading this goes to nmsu and needs to take a math course, try to get Dr. Mostafa).  Physics wasn't so easy, but I managed to do okay, mostly because I added hamsters to all my equations (a hammer striking a nail became a hamm(st)er striking a nail; a car collision became a car(ton of hamsters) collision; a bullet striking a ballistics pendulum became a (hamster) bullet striking a ballistic (hamster) pendulum).  I know it sounds kind of . . . weird, but it made the problems a lot more engaging, and it made sure I never skipped the diagramming step. There's just something so cathartic about crossing out the eyes of all the hamsters that didn't make it . . .

Didn't have much time to paint. I did get a little painting done, but . . . well . . . have you ever worked on a painting and had it not come out, and then spent a lot of time trying to fix it, and have it still not come out, and then spend even more time working on it just because you've spent so much time on it already and you don't want all that time to go to waste, and have it still not come out? Yeah. For, like, two months. I'm thinking it's time to just let this one go. The other picture I've been working on manages to be both insanely complicated technique-wise and extremely boring visually. I'm going to keep working on it, but I'm having a hard time working up a whole lot of enthusiasm about it.

On the bright side, I always learn as much (or more) from my failures as I do from my successes, so this summer hasn't been wasted, even if I don't have much artwork to show for it. I'm also heading to Phoenix to see my grandma in, oh, about fifteen minutes, so maybe I'll get some good painting done there. Wish me luck ☺!
  • Listening to: quail
  • Reading: dresden files
  • Watching: sga
  • Eating: oatmeal
  • Drinking: COFFEE!!!!! So much coffee . . .
Did a thorough cleaning of my room for the first time since . . . well, I can't really remember. I found old homework from when I was seven, though, so I'm figuring it's been a while. Along with old homework and artwork, which was kinda neat to look at, I ran across a wind scorpion… , or, more accurately, a wind scorpion ran across me. And holy crap, those things can run. I didn't get bit, thanks to some handy piles of trash I was able to use as stepping stones to reach my bed (the fact that I could cross my room without touching the floor says it all, really). Turns out wind scorpions aren't poisonous, but according to the fountain of all knowledge and wisdom, Wikipedia, the "large, gaping wounds" they leave can sometimes get infected. Say what you like about desert fauna, it keeps life interesting.

Today was also my first day of summer school. I thought getting up in time for an 8 o'clock class would be difficult, but it wasn't. I had ants in my pants. Literally: there were ants in my laundry. I'm not sure why they were there, but trying to wear them turned out to be a very effective, if unpleasant, way to wake up. Turns out the entire house was carpeted in ants, with the sole exception of the kitchen. Since the kitchen is covered in enough crumbs to make a grown cockroach weep, I'm guessing a bigger badder bug is keeping them away. Or eating them. I don't care, so long as it keeps up the good work.

I'm really excited for this summer! On top of taking pre-calc and physics, I've got about a million pictures I want to paint, and stacks of books I want to read, and I want to keep writing too. I won't get bored, that's for sure (though the bugs alone would have seen to that).

I hope you all are having awesome summers too :D!
  • Listening to: Great BIg Sea
  • Reading: Weir's Henry viii
  • Watching: Supernatural
  • Eating: anythign with chilie
  • Drinking: water
Fire alarm went off at about 4 this morning. Everyone wandered around the apartment for a bit, wondering if we should leave. Then someone opened the door and saw that the hallway was full of smoke, so we decided to head out. Some people brought their laptops, cell phones, wallets, back-up hard drives, important homework assignments, etc. I brought my fuzzy green blanket.

Outside, we found a grand total of twenty people had evacuated (it's a nine story building). All the firemen were milling around looking bored, so we figured we weren't going to get to see a fire and decided to take a walk (muggers who saw us thought, 'Five unarmed girls openly hugging laptops, cell phones, cameras, wallets, and fuzzy green blankets? Must be a dream,' and went back to sleep).

On our walk we came across a fancy looking building with flags hung along the outside, and lots of unoffensive non-objective sculptures tacked to the walls. Inside we could see giant chandeliers, red carpets, leather chairs, fountains, and complementary coffee, so we shuffled in and helped ourselves. The people working there were strangely ok with this. We stayed there until someone complained about the whole thing on facebook, and so signaled that the danger had passed.

Turns out that pumping the hallways full of smoke is something our building does in response to the fire alarms going off (so the smoke from the fire won't be lonely?). The fire alarms had been set off by someone who'd decided that pulling the alarm would be a funny thing to do. The firemen were not amused. They told us to find however had pulled it and kick their ass. Some of us swore to carry out their revenge; some of us just swore.

After drinking a cup of coffee and walking through downtown in my pajamas, I couldn't sleep, so I worked on a homework still life thing until the sun came up and ruined my lighting. Then I ate a bagel. Overall, a productive morning.
  • Listening to: save a horse, ride a cowboy
  • Reading: Elenore of Aquitane
  • Watching: the fire trucks drive away
  • Eating: bagel crumbs
  • Drinking: coffee dregs
Hello! The sun is shinning, my giant-mega-photo-project-of-DOOM has been pushed back a day, I finished a picture, and it's my birthday! Life is good. I'm gonna go splurge on a sandwich and then watch old sci-fi shows to celebrate. Doctor Who, here I come!
  • Listening to: tyr
  • Reading: Anansi boys
  • Watching: doctor who!
  • Eating: quiznos
  • Drinking: water
Sooooo . . . it turns out the reason I was having problems correcting paintings on my laptop was that my color settings in photoshop were all wonky-like. I fixed them, took another look at the pictures I'd previously edited (jack frost and pumpkin cat) and screamed a bit. I've uploaded the correct (hopefully) version of jack frost, so that's something, but the old version of pumpkin cat is clinging to the internet and won't let go. At this point, I say if it wants life that bad, let it have it; I might try to upload the corrected version one more time, but I'm ready to move on.

In other news: I saw a duck with snow on it! A duck!! With snow on it!!! . . . my life is complete now.
  • Listening to: Het Bier Zal Weer Vloeien
  • Reading: Anansi boys
  • Watching: due south
  • Eating: pot roast
  • Drinking: water
It's snowing! It's snowing so much school was canceled. On finals week! So I don't have an English final. Life is good.

Earlier this week I was wandering around in the fresh snow, petting it and generally flailing around in it (because snow! It's snow!), but I guess I looked a bit odd because when I turned around there was a policeman following me at a discreet distance, looking at me suspiciously. Later, while standing on a walkway staring at snow (snow!), I had a concerned looking person come up and ask me if I was alright. I said yes! I'm looking at the snow!! It's pretty!!! There was a pause, where they gave me one of those sympathetic/understanding faces, and then they asked me if I was alone out here, and where my guardian was. I left before they could call the mental hospital, or restrain me for my own good.

This has happened two more times since then, leading me to the conclusion that the good people of Michigan do not share my snow glee. Their loss.
  • Listening to: eye of the tiger
  • Watching: sga
  • Eating: rice
  • Drinking: coffee
In other news, the world is going to end. That's right-—I got an 'A' on a 3d design project. Keep your eyes peeled for flocks of pigs (and seriously, how nasty would that be? I mean, pigeons are bad enough. Bring your umbrellas, folks). The project was a planar abstraction of a bell pepper, and it looked . . . well. The title says it all, really. When my dad saw it he thought it was a spaceship. I think it might have helped that the teacher was doped up on cough medicine when he graded it . . .

Have spent the last week sewing popcorn bags together to make a skirt-—another 3d project. Not sure what it was supposed to teach me, other than popcorn bags aren't very sewable. I kept jabbing my fingers with the needle, then dropping it and loosing it in the carpet. Also, about half the bags needed to be emptied before I could sew them. I tried just dumping the kernels out into the trash, but that left all the gunky, greasy stuff stuck to the inside. The best solution seemed to be to pop them. And it worked! There was a lot less greasy stuff. But what about the popped corn? I couldn't just throw it all away . . .

You see where this is going? Yeah. Ten bags of popcorn, all eaten in under two days. In my defense, it seemed like a really fun idea at the time. Now-—not so much.

But it's finished! Happiness! And it's a Thursday, which means a new episode of supernatural, so even more happiness! Normally I eat popcorn while I watch the show, but this time I think I'll stick with ice cream.
  • Listening to: muse
  • Reading: dresden files
  • Watching: (about to watch) Supernatural
  • Eating: anything but popcorn
  • Drinking: tea
A while ago, I tried to download an episode of Supernatural (btw, that show needs some kind of warning on it, like 'this show may eat your brain/soul/free time/wallet/all of the above). The episode I ended up with, however, was not the one I clicked on, even though it was labeled as being the correct episode. No problem, I thought. I'll just e-mail the magical iTunes fairy, and it'll swish its wand and everything will be sparkly and full of unicorns and happiness.

What actually happened was more like this:

     iTunes fairy: I've received your e-mail, and I'm very sorry for the inconvenience. I've sent another copy of the episode to your account, free of charge. Here are instructions on how to download it. *lists download directions*

     Me: Awesomeness! . . . . um, it's still the wrong episode. I know it's labeled episode 11, but it's actually episode 12.

     Fairy: I have checked your account, and I see that you haven't downloaded the new copy. Here are instructions on how to download it. *lists download directions*

     Me: Yeah, I only downloaded enough to check what the episode is actually titled. It's still the wrong one. Here's a screenshot of the episode at 3 minutes and 6 seconds, where the episode displays its title. You'll notice it's not the same title as the one it's listed as being.

     Fairy: Here are instructions on how to download the new copy. *lists download directions*

     Me: . . . you're not even reading my e-mails, are you.

     Fairy: If you're having problems downloading, feel free to reply to this e-mail.

     Me: OMG! You're a robot, aren't you? I always thought robots would be smarter . . .

     (robot?)Fairy: I'm glad I could be of service!

Score: iTunes robot fairy: 1; me: 0

(note: this conversation has been time elapsed for your reading pleasure. Actual time between e-mails: 10-24 hours)

So, in conclusion, Terminator only got it partially right—-robots ARE trying to take over the world, but they're doing it through a clever application of ulcers.
  • Listening to: Enter Sandman
  • Reading: Good Omens
  • Watching: Supernatural
  • Eating: penutbutter squares
  • Drinking: coffee
Hi y'all! It's been a while. There probably won't be much art coming up any time soon—not only do I not have time, or a scanner, but I'm not doing any art in my classes either. Which is weird, it being an art school and all, but I'm stuck in foundations for the semester: 2d design, 3d, color theory, art history, and english.

Other than the lack of art, art college has been pretty awesome so far. It helps that I have roommates from Mars. No, really—they're from Mars. On my first day here one of them baked me cookies. The second week another one made cookies. Third week? Cinnamon rolls, and more cookies. Fourth week—more cookies. Homemade cookies, with chocolate chips. My roommates aren't messy, they aren't loud, they don't steal my food, and their friends are always kind and respectful . . . there's one friend that even does our dishes and vacuums whenever he comes over.

This is not what I was told dorm life would be like.

My conclusion: they're Martians who are trying to impersonate college students, but skimped a bit on their preparatory research. Their goal: world domination, obviously (they're aliens. Duh), probably using a scheme involving high cholesterol.

My experiments with public transportation have been nowhere near as awesome as my roommates. The highlight of my first bus trip involves my gallon of milk springing a leak. And by springing a leak, I mean springing a GAPING HOLE OF DOOM. There was milk everywhere. Quaint little saying aside, the bus driver looked like he was going to MAKE me cry over spilled milk if he ever got the chance. I was so freaked out I got off at the wrong stop, and had to run to my apartment leaving a little trail of milk behind me, like some urban Hansel and Gretel or something.

Also having problems keeping my grades up. I thought it would be easy—I've never had problems before, not even in my AP classes—but art college is tough. To keep my scholarship I have to get at least three A's and two B's, or four A's and one C. Easy, yes? But on my last 3-d project, only one person in the class got an A. The teacher seemed unconcerned with this. He told us not to expect as high a grade as we were used to getting in high school, and grades didn't really matter all that much anyways. Unfortunately, other teachers seem to agree with him. I did manage to scrape an A on my second 2-d project, but only because I spent the entire weekend on it. And when I say entire weekend, I mean 'up at seven, work till midnight, up at seven, wash, rinse, repeat'. Oh, and I just took a history test that counts as twenty percent of our grade. For a foundation class it's a bit difficult, in the same way water is a bit wet. We had to memorize around forty different sculptures and paintings from 450 BCE to 25,000 BCE, along with their date (I've never had to memorize dates before! They suck!), culture, location, era, and various interpretations. I was so fixated on the dates that I missed the meanings, and when I got to the essay section of the exam I couldn't remember what the hell the Parthenon had been built for, much less how it related to previous architecture of that period. I did remember that it used the ratio 4:9 a lot, which had nothing to do with the prompt, but it was all I knew so I stuck it in there anyway. I thought I'd make up for it on the second essay (there were three), but the prompt for it turned out to be comparing and contrasting a Greek funerary vase to Stonehenge, and examining how the construction of each revealed its culture's relationship with nature. Yeah . . .

I've also been sick. Like, really sick. During color theory I was coughing so hard the teacher stopped the critique to draw a cross over me, then asked me if there were any next-of-kin he should know about, and what their phone numbers were. On the bright side, being sick makes me go fuzzy in the head, and all those social anxieties that normal sit on my tongue vanish into la la land, along with my common sense. During the two weeks I've been sick I've made more friends than the rest of the school year combined, simply because I'll go up and chat to random people, and say random things, and invite them back to my apartment to eat salami (my mom sent me about three pounds of salami. Yes. My mom is that awesome), and sometimes they look at me weird, but sometimes they're just as lonely as me, and they say yes, salami sounds nice, and Boom! A friend.

Wow, long journal. Anyone who read all that gets a telepathic cookie! (not one of my roommates cookies, though. They're too awesome to share, even telegraphically)
  • Listening to: Cigarettes and Chocolate Milk
  • Reading: Good Omens (again)
  • Watching: Supernatural
  • Eating: ice cream
  • Drinking: coffee
Off to college tomorrow! Toodles, y'all!
  • Listening to: cicadas
  • Reading: Harry Potter n the sorcerer's stone
  • Watching: Curse of the Were Rabbit
  • Eating: ice cream
  • Drinking: coffee
Well, in the last journal I spent most of my time talking about the full tuition scholarship I'd just won. About that . . .

I called the Scholarship office, accepted the award for, as the website stated (pretty unambiguously, in my opinion) a full tuition scholarship up to 15 credit hours. The lady on the other end of the line said she'd update my account, and everything was peachy until I logged on and looked at my balance. Although the page said I'd accepted the Founder's Scholarship, and the amount of scholarship money I was receiving had increased, it wasn't full tuition. Not even close.

I called back, and it turns out by 'full tuition' they meant 'full tuition at in-state tuition rates'. And I was a bit annoyed, because really--how much would it have cost them to mention that on their website? I went back to check, and no where on the site do they have any conditions attached to the words 'full scholarship' except for the fifteen credit limit. Still, there wasn't an enormous difference between in-state and out-of-state tuition, so I wasn't going postal. Then I went back to do some math.

My scholarship STILL didn't match full tuition, not even at in-state tuition rates. I called back again (the lady on the other line was on first-name terms with me by then) and asked what was going on. She didn't know--the information was so hidden that she had to wait for a Very Important Person to get back from vacation to ask them, and only then did it surface that the scholarship doesn't cover studio credits (ei. 3/5 of my class load).

So. Struggling not to be angry. The money I did get will be extremely helpful, and I'd have worked just as hard for it even if I'd known how much it was. My only problem is having my expectations let down, and my family's expectations let down. When I got the award, it should have been a 'Wow! I just got a half-tuition scholarship!' celebration instead of a 'What? What do you mean it's not full tuition?' moment.  

So screw that. I'm just going to be happy I got as much as I did--at least, I will be as soon as I stop fuming. Then I'll be good.

In happier news I'm heading up for a family reunion in Utah tomorrow! My uncle Mike will be there, and he cooks great food, so I'll have one last feast before college cuisine kicks in.
  • Listening to: The Lion Sleeps Tonight
  • Reading: The Golden Compass
  • Watching: Pirates of the Carribean
  • Eating: Yogurt
  • Drinking: water