at home with a hanasaurusrex

a sweet surprise

Outside one of my studio windows is the peak of Olomana. It’s green year round. This is by far the best place I’ve ever worked in my entire life. It definitely beats the drive-thru window at Checkers (a hamburger joint in Biloxi, Mississippi) and it most certainly beats being a 4th of July fireworks stand operator—especially during a drought summer in Texas. I had to live in that shack for two weeks, even sleeping there. And then, I didn’t even get paid for it until a year later! But we won’t go there. Long story.

monarch caterpillar

Outside my other window is a Milkweed plant, which every year around this time becomes a host plant for the Monarch Butterfly. My husband’s mother loves butterflies and she often will go out and find the branches with caterpillars, gather them up, and put them in buckets of water so she can watch their metamorphosis into the creatures she adores, ever careful not to disturb them.

monarch caterpillar

So about a week ago my dear husband gathered some himself. He put them in a small bucket with water and placed them our office. When he told me about them he said they’d already been in the office for three or four days. To which I replied, “What!? You mean they’ve been there this whole time and I never noticed them?!” I’m usually a keen observer, but I guess when it comes to his desk, I’ve just stopped looking at the mess.

monarch chrysalis

He told me how he’d hoped one of them would turn into a butterfly and surprise me one day while I was working—just flying around my desk. I know, how cool would that be? But I had unexpectedly busted him while he was watering the plant so the cat was outta the bag.

monarch chrysalis

We now have one Monarch chrysalis. My husband super glued the leaf it’s attached to up high by my window. And two more caterpillars happily munching away… one is pretty big and will soon—any day now—turn into a chrysalis itself.  They are just lovely, and I will certainly take more photos as this one emerges. Hopefully I’ll catch him in the act! And when he’s ready to fly………… we will let him go.

I knew my husband was a sweetheart the day I met him, but he continually finds ways to show me just how crazy cool he is.


um can we say ahhddicted!
March 17, 2011, 4:26 pm
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‘Cause that’s what I am. Seriously, this is my favorite way to easily kill a couple hours online now. Maybe you’ve heard about it… Pinterest? If not, Pinterest is an online community where you are the curator of your very own style boards—your collections of inspiring images.

Source: via hanasaurusrex on Pinterest

A while back I had mentioned I was using We♥It to do this, which I did ♥. But after using Pinterest now, I can share the differences between the two.

The major difference—for me—is the quality of images I find in the Pinterest community vastly exceeds the ones posted to We♥It. And by quality I don’t mean megapixel; I mean relevancy, at least for me. While I really do like We♥It, I find the majority of the images are of hipster/emo tweens taking pictures of themselves. There are also a lot of images of bokeh, decorated finger nails and nailpolish, models and poses, depressing quotes, parties and oh, a TON of images of little sayings written on hands, tiny papers, or in notebooks of teenage angst, love, or the lack thereof. I am far from a teenager now, and I’ve started to find that it takes me way longer to, and only after sifting though pages and pages do, I find a few images I really ♥.

Source: via hanasaurusrex on Pinterest

I know the idea of these sites are that I would be hearting or pinning images I find elsewhere online, thus creating my own curated collection of images relevant to me and thereby improving the relevancy of the site for myself and others like me, which I do. However, with We♥it, there must be way more people hearting things that aren’t relevant to me and I can’t keep up. Also, I like to spend time browsing through everybody’s posted images rather than only posting from outside the community. This way I find more things to inspire me and I feel more connected with the community I am a part of. I have found that Pinterest is just way more inspiring for me, in its collections and community.

Source: via hanasaurusrex on Pinterest

Here are a few more attributes that make me more interested in using Pinterest. The site is set up to carry the source where the image was posted through each time the image is ‘liked’ or ‘repinned’. We♥It does this as well. The difference again, I believe, lies within the community. Most sources I try to follow on We♥It land me on a Tumbler page where there are no sources in sight. Where The sources I’ve followed on Pinterest have led me to blogs where someone has—wait for it—actually written information about the image, citing not only a source, but giving credit where credit is due. Of course, you are going to have the images where it is impossible to find where it came from. I found one the other day on Pinterest of a totally sick marble soaking tub, when I followed the source, it led me to a blog where I could find no link to the image. What I did find, though, was another really great blog full of more great content and images of home decor. Score.

Source: via hanasaurusrex on Pinterest

Another difference, and a pretty big one, is how on Pinterest you can separate your pins onto different boards and categorize them however you want. So far I have 5 boards, things I love to love, I’m starving, fashion hearts, typOMGraphy, and sweet spaces. This is extremely helpful, not only for referring back to the images, but for sharing them as well.

Source: via hanasaurusrex on Pinterest

There are a couple more ways you can share with Pinterest. There is a button to embed your pins into you’re own blog, which I used in this post :) and a button to email your pins to friends who maybe—yes there are still folks who—don’t use Twitter or Facebook. These are both great options, especially the embed, because it keeps the source intact.

Source: via hanasaurusrex on Pinterest

What I love about both of these sites is that I can keep a collection of all the wonderful, inspiring images I find online all in one place for me to refer back to, ogle at, dream of, and share very easily. As an artist, I find this very helpful and a huge time saver! I mean think of all the hours I would have to spend online to find all these amazing images! And too, I am not trying to dog on We♥It. They, like all products, have a market they appeal to. In some ways, when I am browsing there, it makes me wish I were a tween again. But then I think, “Wait. What the hell am I thinking?!!”

Oh! Here is that amazing bathtub! I followed the source to the blog it references, but was unable to find the actual post. If anyone knows where I can read about it definitely let me know!

Source: via hanasaurusrex on Pinterest

March 15, 2011, 3:56 pm
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hannah paint feldspar martha stewart

Here’s a sneak peek at one of the colors I painted yesterday! It’s called Feldspar and it’s paint by Martha Stewart—more on that later. I am really hearting on it, especially today after sleeping on it and then walking back into the room this morning and seeing it all completed :D whew! I always have those color freak-outs when I first start putting a color on the wall… I’m like, “Oh man, I don’t know about this color, eeek.” Of course, I never do the right thing and put a sample of the paint up for a while to see what I think… oh no, never do that. I should, but I’m kinda like go for it! It helps me to learn to trust my instincts.

Now I’m off to buy the new carpet our landlords (*wink* the parents who we pay rent to) are buying for us to put in! I’m sooooo excited! :D

*note: color may vary base on your monitor calibration ;)

ra-ra-room renos (cont’)
March 14, 2011, 2:43 pm
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hannah & lj ready to reno

Eh—so call it the optimist in me, but I really thought we’d be able to finish painting our bedroom yesterday :( bummer, we did not. Turns out the sanding took way longer than either of us expected and then…….. holy schmoly……. the aftermath clean up was ridiculous. The dust created traveled all the way down our long hallway and into our kitchen! Crap, if now everything isn’t covered in a fine film. Oooooh well. You live and you learn. Thankfully I had the decent sense to close the door to my office, which is the closer room and the one I had expected would fall victim to the cloud.

bedroom renovations

Seems I had a little trouble at first with my mask, which btw, I HATED having to wear. It was entirely scratchy and made me feel like I couldn’t breath. When I first put it on it kept fogging up my glasses! I was like, “I can’t see, how am I suppose to wear this thing when I can’t see?” When my sweet husband came over to help me, he started cracking up. “You’re suppose to pinch the metal thing across your nose.”—”Oh, der.” So with that crisis averted I began to sand, and sand I did. Forever I sanded. So much so that even now my entire right arm still feels “fuzzy”. Is that a bad thing? When will it go away? I’m fearing the worst, of course, like nerve damage or something crazy like that. One thing is for sure, what ever it is isn’t going to keep me from having to paint today. Regardless, I was definitely thankful in the end for the mask and the goggles. As uncomfortable as they were, they kept me from having to breath in all that Spackle dust! No brown boogers for me today. Yay!

hannah sanding

We kept our bed in the room while we sanded, covering it up with a large plastic covering, because the only place we had to move it was out in the hallway and covering it in the flat position was just easier. Later, when we finished sanding and cleaning up, we moved the bed out into the hallway. When we came back into the room we saw this staring back at us.

ugly doll collection

This is my Ugly Doll collection. Bring to mind any classic John Hughes movies? :D It was so funny to see them all looking up at us like that, all wide eyed. I hate that I had to put them in storage, but right now there is just no great place for them to go… I hope they aren’t too mad at me ;)

I’ll be back with more reno updates… I hope the next post will be the last before I can do a big reveal.

room renovations
March 13, 2011, 12:08 am
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Goodie Goodie! We are finally moving forward on our room renovations, YAY! Here’s some before pictures. This is our bedroom, and that’s not snow, it’s Spackle!

bedroom renovations

We’ve gone back and forth on this decision because, truth be told, we’d really like to move soon *fingers crossed* to Austin, Texas. I guess, regardless, we’d still pack our bags if the opportunity arose, but for now we are not quite sure it’s the right time to move. We’ve been really hoping LJ could get a job transfer rather than us both having to find new jobs in Texas, but it’s looking like that may not work out. And with this new piece to our puzzle we are having to rework our get-out-of-dodge strategy.

kitchen aftermath

This is our kitchen as it stands right now, this isn’t how it’s always been though. Since we are starting in the bedroom, we’ve moved all the furniture from that room into the kitchen temporarily. We also rearranged the kitchen furniture to accommodate such a move. It’s really full and cluttered right now, but it won’t stay that way for long. We are planning to finish the bedroom paint tomorrow so we can move everything back. I guess it will probably be the following weekend when we’ll get to start on the kitchen paint and what not… I can’t wait!

Still, to a certain extent I’ve been feeling like if we make the changes we want to make then it’s like we’re saying we are going to stay. It’s sort of like we’re investing in the place. I guess I should clarify, the place is LJ’s parent’s home. They were very gracious and after we got married let us move into the second half of their home, adding a door to the hallway to make it more private. And that’s how the majority of people live in Hawaii. It’s called, Ohana style or family style. It’s great actually, to be close to family, and have so much support, but after 2 years we are very ready to have a place of our own.

In the meantime, though, we are going to see what a great coat of paint will do for the place along with a rearrangement of the furniture and a good cleanout of old clutter. Something tells me it won’t take much to make our current digs really feel like home!

pizza action

Cooking dinner tonight gave me the perfect opportunity to try out a new Photoshop action that I downloaded. I’ve been using Photoshop for over a decade, and I have made my own actions in the past for many different things, especially anything I have had to do more than a few times. Really good photo touch up and manipulation takes major time, no if’s, and’s, or buts. I’ve put in that time; I feel like I’ve seriously paid my dues over the years, so when I was recently encouraged by a friend who is just learning Photoshop to check out all the free actions online, I did—and wow. There are tons! Not all of them are seriously incredible, but I did find one that I really like and after seeing it in action was really impressed. It’s called Polaroid Generator V1. There is also a V2 available, which I have yet to try, but I am sure I’ll love it.

pizza dinner

I say cooking dinner tonight was the perfect opportunity because the raw pictures I took of us cooking were terrible. Not entirely my fault, though. First off, the lighting in our kitchen is for the birds (kaw, kaw) and well, honestly, food never really photographs that well—I think—even in good lighting, without serious photo touch up. So I figured, if I’m going to be touching up the pictures anyway, I might as well try this new action and save myself some long hours! Also, I thought the vintage Polaroid look would work really nicely with the pizza theme… kinda like I was a kid again.

pizza slice

I got a Fuji Instax Mini 25 last Christmas and so enjoyed using up the two boxes of film that came with it. It is such a fun little camera, but ‘alas, I am out of film and it is not in our budget to purchase more right now, so this Polaroid action will have to do until I can take the real thing again! Man, I really loved my parent’s old Polaroid camera circa 1970–something, instant gratification! Hey, kinda like this action!

i love fat mags!
March 9, 2011, 7:48 pm
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Magazines that is. :D

I can’t get enough of magazines! It makes me wonder why I didn’t go into journalism myself. I’ve even thought about maybe trying to do some freelance writing here and there. Geez, as if I don’t have my fingers in too many pies already!

But get a load of the new issues of Vogue and Harper’s Bazaar! They’re HUGE! Just another reason to love spring.

march issues of harper's bazaar and vogue

I can’t wait for this weekend when I will officially be declaring a lazy Sunday so I can devour these two publications. If it takes me all day, I say! Seriously half of them are ads, but I don’t care. I am such a sucker for fashion mags and any other kind of magazine for that matter. Over the last few years I’ve seen many of my favorites trim their issues from hundreds of pages to a hundred pages if you’re lucky or go out of print all together. These are, after all, hard times, I know. So when an issue comes along of this gargantuan, let alone two issues, I am so in.

I am particularly loving the cover of Harper’s Bazaar this month. I want a giant panda suit! I’m not super skinny or a model by any definition, but I would soooo make LJ wear that thing and walk around Waikiki with me all day!

march issue of harpers bazaar

The issue of Vogue has Lady Gaga on the cover. I’m more of an indie-rock/electronica kinda girl myself, but the article looks interesting. I figured I read it to maybe school myself on some of the hype. (You have no idea how hard it was for me not to type skool—I swear, I really do know how to spell. And snap! my Zemanta is nothing but Lady Gaga pictures all of the sudden, wow.)

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