2 seconds of fame.

Apparently, I'm famous.
Luke re-posted my A-Z project on his blog and it's been re-posted a few times. Way fun.

The other funny thing is that during our class critiques, my typography teacher wasn't really diggin' it. When I had the audacity to tell him it had been re-posted a few times and that other people seemed to like it, he was like, "They know you didn't come up with the idea, right?"
I'm still a little worried about getting an A on the assignment.



I was telling my mom just a few days ago that I think every good mother is loaded with hobbies. The theory behind it is that if they're not actively pursuing their own interests, that they are likely to be a little overbearing of their children and self-righteous from sacrificing too much.
"Do you think that I've been good in that way?", she asked.

"Yeah, of course mom, you've always been interested in tons of stuff."

"Like what?"

"C'mon, are you joking? I could start with how into history you are (she reads history books non-stop). . .yeah, I mean, remember the Freddy Krueger costume? Now there's pursuing an interest on a whim. . ."

"Yeah, but that's not really a cutesy mom thing to do, it's certainly not like scrapbooking."

"But that's what we love about you."

So here's the story: My mom dropped all of us kids off at elementary school on Halloween. We went to a private school where we weren't even allowed to dress up. I was in the 3rd grade.

When she returned home, she saw instructions on some morning talk show about how to make a really cool Freddy Krueger mask. She saw how easy it was to make one so authentic looking and felt inspired.

When she came to pick us up in the afternoon, she was decked out in a full costume, wearing the mask. It looked good. Maybe too good. She says she remembers scaring the kids and creeping out the teachers.

Of course I hadn't seen "Nightmare on Elm Street" and thought it was really fun that my mom had decided to dress up.

I hope I can be a good mom like my mom someday.

I pulled the beautiful watercolor of Freddy here.


spec book.

Okay, so maybe this will be my nerdiest post ever, but I've been working non-stop on this new assignment for my typography class. We have to make a typeface specimen book. What is that? We give the history of a typeface, indicate its origins (both in visually and in text) and show how the typeface can and should be used.

Now, please understand that my typography teacher wants us to get totally geeked out on typefaces. We played this game in class once that went something like this:

my typography teacher: Okay, suppose that Helvetica and Bodoni had a child. Which typeface would it be?

Oh man. Let me tell you right now that I don't know that answer off the top of my head.

So, here's my spec book. Please let me know if you have any suggestions. I plan on printing it all out on one long sheet and folding it like an accordian for the final version (this only 4 of 9 pages):

When my friend, Nate, saw this project he said, "Man, can you imagine what school was like before computers? You would've learned real stuff, like Latin and philosophy." I still laugh every time I re-tell this joke.



Whitney's good friend, Naomi, agreed to analyze my handwriting. The analysis of handwriting is actually called graphology. I've never met Naomi before, so it was fun to write a pen-pal type stranger (she is one of my newest friends) and it made me really curious about the results, as they were unbiased.

I decided to post the results in my handwriting-- it just seemed to make sense:Of course I like the results, as they are mostly complimentary. Some of them seem stunningly accurate. I even agree with the less favorable parts.

The only thing that I only partially agree with is that I try to hide a part of myself by writing in all caps. I started writing in all caps in the eighth grade certainly with that intention, but at this point, it's been a habit for over ten years. I don't even know how to write naturally in lower case letters anymore.

There is an admitted narcissism to personality tests and horoscopes that attracts me. I think it is so fun to (a.) see how accurate you think the test is and (b.) attempt to see yourself from an outside perspective.

Thanks Naomi!



I've been saying, "Out with the metro-, in the retro-" for a really long time now. For those of you who aren't fimiliar with this terminology, allow me break it down.

metrosexual: (according to MSN Encarta)

young straight stylish urban man: a young, straight, sensitive urban man who is unashamed to enjoy good clothes, stylish living, the art of decorating, and improving his personal appearance ( informal )

[mid-20th century.]

retrosexual (according to the urban dictionary.)

A retrosexual is the opposite of a metrosexual. He is a guy who doesn't care about his looks.
I'm so over boys being prettier than me, my new boyfriend is totally retrosexual.
If that's still not clear, click here.

Okay, so maybe I'm a trend-follower or maybe I'm just growing up, but I completely agree. I'm tired of boys being prettier than me.

Once when giving Mike Alger some fashion advice I said, "I would never want to date a boy who dresses more carefully than I do... been there, done that. Look nice, but not too nice."

A few months ago, my brother, Carl, asked me for advice on what his new haircut should look like and within 5 minutes I was shaving his head with 1/2" clippers.

And I promise that I was saying all of this long before I met Josh. (It's just another one of those amazingly perfect things about him that he happens to be retrosexual.)The weirdest thing about my recent retrosexual trend is that I've become awfully retrosexual myself. It's true that my hair is still short and that I still don't like lacy things; but I recently bought my first pair of high heels (I like them so much that I'm planning a whole future entry around them), my first push-up bra, and my first non-grocery store makeup. I'm wearing perfume on a regular basis for the first time ever, and I've had my fingernails painted red for about 2 months straight with no plans of stopping anytime soon. I am loving it.

I'm not entirely sure what this says about me. An earlier version of myself may have been disgusted...




mike alger is ingenious.

Director Mike's notes: This was for a 24 hour competition, so it had to be shot and edited in 24 hours. Of course, we're awesome so I had it done in 18.
It had to have the theme of "Sacrifice," use the line of dialogue "Let me be your..." and use the object of a match at some point, but be no longer than 3 minutes.



This Common music video is the first place I heard of Barack Obama (you'll hear it at about 2:40.)

I used to joke that I was going to vote Obama because he liked hip hop. I thought it was really funny when my mom couldn't tell whether I was joking or not.

In all seriousness, however, I think that Obama's new term as leader of the free world will mark the beginning of an era in great hip hop.

All of my favorite hip hop albums were made around the turn of the century: Stuff like Blackstar, Common's "Like Water For Chocolate", Blackalicious's "Blazing Arrow", Mos Def's "Black on Both Sides", and definitely "Mama's Gun" by Erykah Badu.

In the midst of Hurricane Katrina, the Sean Bell scandal, and all of the turmoil that's surrounded every American citizen (War in Iraq, illegal government surveillance, etc.) a lot of the socially conscious artists that I like started to create a lot of pretty angry stuff.

Now they have something to celebrate. Can't wait to hear it...


i decided to embrace it.

If you don't get it, click here.



Found letters.
If you find anymore, let me know. I've gotta get all twenty-six.


new hobby.

As someone who has waved real signs protesting the Iraq war (the pic above is actually from a friend's surprise birthday party), it has been entertaining to collect the reactions of people who are catching word that I am dating a military guy.

When Whitney heard, she took me to see the movie, Valkyrie. She said that she loved good stories about good men trying to save the world.

I recently told some married friends about my news:

"Oh my gosh! We just barely saw Sisterhood of the Traveling Pants 2. There's this girl in it who falls in love with a male model in her figure drawing class. I automatically thought of you and said something about how maybe that could be a dating strategy you could use... yeah, military... whoa, I never saw that coming."

I even try to even break it down gently for others who I think might feel particularly surprised. This was my method with my German friend (who tends to be a more left-leaning pacifist):

"So what is he like?"

"Uh, he speaks German; he actually lived in Germany for a while..."

"Oh, great!"

"Yeah, he actually also speaks French and Spanish...and he graduated from BYU in microbiology...

"Cool, cool..."

"And he's also serving in the military..."

"Oh...now that's, uh...different."

My brother (who's the Navy doc) explained, "Laura, if you're gonna date a military guy, you've gotta start learning some military vernacular." And then we talked for an hour just about how the military ranking systems work.

Yeah, I'll confess that there's a little culture shock involved for me. Even though this is just a paintballing pic, the whole feel of it strikes me as completely foreign (Josh is the one on the left):But as I've considered a relationship with a military guy, I've actually come to the conclusion that I may be well suited to it.

When I was married to someone with mental illness I joined NAMI (The National Alliance on Mental Illness), volunteered, taught classes, attended support groups, read every book on Bipolar Disorder that I could possibly find (I am seriously an expert now), kept updated on new research and medications, and did my best to ensure that my spouse was receiving the best possible care that he had access to.

I think I can continue to demonstrate that kind of loyalty and support although the circumstances are different.

Furthermore, no matter how left-leaning I may be, I absolutely believe that the United States needs a military and that the military should be operated and run by quality people with a sincere desire to serve.

Here's a quote from the bottom of Josh's facebook page that sums up my sentiments (and probably Whitney's too):

We sleep safe in our beds because rough men stand ready in the night to visit violence on those who would do us harm.
-George Orwell

Scary, but true.

I am likely to register as a Republican any time soon?

winter shooting.

After church, I was driving down the road to my house and really wanted to take some winter photographs. When I told my mom, she said that she'd had the same idea for days.


sports & military.

Go cougars! I made this dress to wear to pep rallies. Okay, not really, but I love the way the darts on the bodice so formally express my school pride.

I'm loving wearing my new military bracelet and smelling like mens' Armani cologne all day. Oh man, I've never been this excited for a Valentine's Day in my whole life. . . and it's only less than a month away.


shout out to the broken-hearted.

When it comes to romance, everyone deserves to be completely and absolutely adored. Nobody should settle for less. I cannot tell you how much I mean this.

It's a necessary and wretched part of life to pursue someone who isn't as interested as you are; but as someone who's gone through this probably more than most I say: Get over it and dig deep to find what about yourself is lacking that compels you to carry on with that kind of rejection. Rid yourself of excuses about why the other person isn't fully exchanging your affections. Stop envisioning a future where they will adore you the way you think they possibly could.

I promise you'll be happier for it.

(I am writing this publicly to ensure that I see it again when I need it.)


i promise i do not like manga or anime.

Whitney once said: "Laura, you're the most Japanese person I know. You're more Japanese than Chip and he is half Japanese and he speaks Japanese."

Is it more nerdy that I felt slightly flattered?

I received an email from my sister today suggesting a destination for our next Barlow womens' retreat. She knew I'd be on board. There's no way I'm gonna make a trip to Japan any time soon, so here's the next best thing for a nerd like myself-- Hotel Tomo:
It's in Japantown in San Fransisco. It is completely Japanese themed. I felt really nerdy about how excited I was to go and then started thinking about how if you line up a lot of stuff that I like in a row, you could really get the wrong idea:

My favorite food is sushi.
My favorite fashion publication is FRUiTS.
(which documents Tokyo street fashion)
My favorite cartoon of all time is My Neighbor Totoro
My favorite t.v. show is Samurai Jack.

My favorite comedy is Kamikaze Girls.
But I also really want to own a pair of cowboy boots -- oh my gosh-- maybe that's really Japanese of me too...


complete mystery.

I am still afraid of the word "divorced" when it is attached to my name. I embrace the fact that I am divorced and feel enormous gratitude about being divorced, but it is still a heavy word and I'm not always sure how people will respond.

I was recently speaking with a group of people who didn't know I was divorced. We were catching up on some mutual past acquaintances:

"So, I heard that Emily is on her second."

"Oh, uh...really?"

"Yeah, it's too bad; I don't really know what happened with the first guy..."

I felt grateful when the topic changed.

As much as I have feared the reaction of old friends or acquaintances, I have feared the reaction of dating prospects to a much greater extent. I have an imagined scene that I've played out in my mind on more than one occasion:

I'm on a date with a guy, everything is going well, he doesn't know I'm divorced. The topic comes up and there's no way around it. I fidget, stammer, and once the word "divorced" has left my lips, he is speechless and isn't sure how to react externally. Internally he's thinking, how can I drop this girl off a.s.a.p. and indicate to her that she doesn't have a chance?

I know that I'm totally overreacting.

And that leads me to my next crazy point: I receive exponentially more male attention now that I'm divorced. And I'm comparing this not to when I was married (obviously) but to when I was single before.

My only question; WHY? It is a complete mystery to me. Is it because I am happier; more confident?

Most guys seems completely unphased by the "divorced" word in reality.
And especially because I feel undeserving of some of this male attention, I simply cannot wrap my brain around it.


how to make a dress form.

Follow this link.

I recommend a day when you're snowed in. We actually had a great time. Thanks Mim!



2008 contained more than I ever could've possibly imagined. I'm being completely serious. I know that had I sat down on 01.01.08 and written down my fondest dreams, that all of them would have been surpassed by the incredible things that actually occurred throughout the course of the year.
But perhaps the most surprising discovery took place within the last few fractions of the calendar, just before the clock struck twelve: There are incredible men in the world who exceed all of your expectations.
And what's more? Some of them are still single.