In Arizona, it is a magical time from mid-July throughout August -Monsoon season

I love it.

Tonight was one of the best in the season so far. Camaron and I were at his parent's house playing Pit when it started. Rain streaked the windows and thunder was rolling in the distance. It continued without any sign of letting up, so Cam and I decided to go outside and check it out.
About an hour later, 
after walking/running to our friend Nate's house, 
being pelted in the face by huge drops, 
almost losing a flip flop, 
dodging falling branches, 
being splashed by huge trucks driving by,
and climbing a fence,
Camaron and I arrived home drenched to the core.

One of my favorite nights of the summer.

Waterslides Are Irresistible

A while ago, Cam's Aunt Diana invited us to all go play at Slide Rock in Sedona. Slide Rock is a natural waterslide carved into a rock canyon in Nothern Arizona. Natural waterslide? We were all over that. 
So, this week, we grabbed Diana and Camaron's mom and all headed up to enjoy
 the red-rock goodness of Sedona.
Cheering myself on like I'm the fattest boy in camp. "Get off the scale!"
-This is how I pump myself up to jump off cliffs


Later on, we used our wet money to get us some oh so delicious pizza at The Hideaway and fudge from The Candy Corral. Waterslides+pizza+fudge=WhywenotgotoSedonaeveryday???

Rockin at the Museum

Last week, Camaron, Bethany, and I hit up the MIM (musical instrument museum) in Scottsdale.
Such a fun place.
I went there last year for their celebration for John Lennon's birthday (highly recommended).
This time, we heard that Camaron's favorite band What Laura Says was putting on a show, so there was no missing that.
The band was amazing, as was the rest of the museum.
My favorite room is the Experience Gallery. It is a room full of instruments from gongs to guitars to harps that YOU get to play. We spent the majority of our time jamming out in there.

1. What Laura Says doing their thang
2. I inevitably look like this at all good concerts
3. Family band
4. Playing some air guitars
5. Air guitar on display
6. Best.Description.Ever
7. Playing the theremin. The only instrument you don't have to touch to play
8. Bethany is available to play at all your future wedding parties
9. My musically-gifted husband
10. My hip-hoppin-gifted husband

Rock on, MIM. Rock on.

A Proud Moment

This is my husband, Camaron.

Yes, I mention him here and there, but I truly don't believe I give him enough credit.
Sure he made my lunch everyday this last half of the school year, He worked all summer in the sun (the hot AZ taco-pits sun), he lets me borrow his clothes, He eats everything I make and loves it, he has no inhibitions about dancing in public (with or without me), He lets me sleep in...

But last night, he earned my full respect.
Camaron's cousin, Jason, came over to show us a video. It's a documentary about this HUGE DEAL CELEBRITY in Korea. This guy's famous for being a Starcraft master, but that is a NATIONAL SPORT in Korea. no joke. His name is Boxer. Look him up. His documentary is also a HUGE DEAL in Korea (and in the gaming world).
Here's a clip from the documentary. 
Watch it. Right Now. Trust me.

Did you see him???? So ...Camaron's basically an international superstar now and I couldn't be more proud.
(He was the tall one in the grey jacket with the shoulder bag)

The best was our reactions when Jason ("Jason from Arizona") showed this to us and then Cam and his friends saw themselves for the first time. There was laughter, screaming, hugging ...the works.

If Cam had been in the credits for his work in the documentary, these were our favorite titles for him:
Chest-bumper #2
Mustachioed Gentleman
White Guy with Peace Sign

The Diving Lady

As mentioned in the previous post, I used the image of the diving lady at the Starlite Motel from downtown Mesa for my tortured image project. I'm guessing she was on my mind because Camaron has a shirt with her diving on it. I bought it for him from a shop raising money to have the giant neon sign restored 
(it blew down last fall in a storm). 
I've grown up knowing this sign. I'd always see it when I was riding in the car with my mom while she was running errands. It honestly made me sad when I found out it fell down. 
I've heard it will be restored and back up this fall though! 
Seriously great news!
Anyway, so I used the image of the diving lady for this project. We had to make 50 separate images inspired by this one image. It was a lot of fun brainstorming ways to change-up this iconic image of Mesa. 
Here are some of my favs
No, there is nothing wrong with your vision. I made it like this
plus-size diver 
coke bottle diver
be careful what you dive into
siamese twin divers
mafia-throwing-body-off-bridge-into-a-river diver
fail diver
getting-ready-for-the-backflip diver
cross-hatch diver

I could keep going, I mean I have 50 of these. My teacher really liked my project 
and said I needed to make one into a t-shirt for him. 
If you had to choose one, which would you wear???

p.s. here she is doing what she does best just a few years ago


2D Design

Being an art teacher has been great fun and all, but I've found I would much rather take an art class than teach one.  I love creating and learning and, as soon as we get residency in Utah, I want to go back to school. 
This summer, I was able to take a 2D design class at MCC. 
Not even kidding, it was my most favorite class ever.

I wish I would have taken this class years ago so that I could've implemented 
this teacher's teaching style in my own classroom; he was so great.
 I felt so much confidence in myself while he was teaching; pretty sure the whole class felt the same way. And we were really pushed to create great work and the critiques were so phenomenal! I guess what I'm getting at is that this teacher better still be teaching there whenever Cam and I move back from Utah, because he was one of the few amazing teachers that you really feel like 
you came away with something great everyday.

Here are some of the projects I created while taking 2D Design (per my family's request)

This project was inspired by contemporary artist Vik Muniz. Basically,we had to create a large work, made out of something small, using repetition, symmetry, and unity. I had been watching So You Think You Can Dance a lot lately, so I created a pair of mirrored break dancers out of cassette tape images.

I made the dancers and the boom box out of individual tapes that I cut out and glued one at a time. I ran out of time to continue doing that for the background too, so I just arranged those on photoshop and printed them out.

This next project was probably the hardest. We had to create a work that described ourselves using a metaphor, but avoiding cliches. We also had to emphasize line quality and create three separate pieces. As a newlywed, it was hard to think of myself without including Camaron. It's not my life anymore, it's ours. It's not me, it's us. I share my life with Camaron now. So I created a work where in the center, you see two kids sharing toys (Monopoly money, racecar, blocks, My Little Pony). The outer pictures are the hands reaching toward each other; they look similar but are actually very different (one is shaded with a full range of values, and the other is only made of cross-hatching lines) *the hands are stubby on purpose, I tried to make them look like a child's hand

This last project was the most fun for me. It was titled The Tortured Image. We had to each choose some image that we would need to recreate 50 times. Each one being different. We were to experiment with different mediums and really push and explore on this one. Eventually, out of the 50, we'd end up with about ten images that would just be fantastic (or at least that's what we were told). Some people really struggled with picking an image to use; for some reason, mine came to me very quickly. I chose the diving lady from the hotel in downtown Mesa. Here's a sneak peek:
This project got a little out of hand to fit it all into this already-too-long post, so check back tomorrow for all of the details


It All Ends

Oh, last Thursday night. What a magical night (pun intended?). 
Twas the last midnight HP premiere for us all.

Although I'm not an immensely distraught or anything like that, I still feel a little sad that it's not going to happen again.

We won't be pulling out old graduation gowns again to put them to the greatest use they've ever served.
There won't be a movie theatre full of girls in ties.
Boys won't shave their heads, paint them pasty white, and tape down their noses.
People won't run around in gold spandex and feathers on their heads pretending to be a golden snitch.
Bellatrix & Rodolphus Lestrange

Favorites of the night:
Dressing up with friends
Seeing how creative some people were in the costumes (we saw people dressed as a golden snitch, Dobby, Crookshanks, Buckbeak...)
Running into old friends
Everyone shouting "mischief managed!" at the end of the film


Our girl beachy trip always includes a fun day in Carlsbad.
 It all started either the first or second year we did the trip; One of us either forgot a book or didn't bring enough or something, so we began looking up bookstores in the phonebook.
This was how we were introduced to Farenheit 451, a used bookstore in Carlsbad.
What a freakin sweet bookstore name is that?! I mean c'mon.
So we went and it was magical, and now we go every time we're on our trip.

Carlsbad is also full of decorated fire hydrants.
 The rasta one was just too good not to photograph ...and then the others were begging for it too. 

Summertime =Beachtime

 We had our annual Jones girls beach trip this week. 
Oh man, so much fun. 
Sorry so many of the photos are dark -apparently, I only like taking my camera out when the sun's about to go down? Or when there's a bridge?
Anyway, my mom, older sister, and I have been escaping to CA a few days a year for the 
past 4 years or so. I'm so glad my mom thought of it. 
It is so fun to just have time with us girls (even though I definitely was missing Camaron). 
More pictures to come.
Yes, there will be a lot of shots of Bethany and I jumping in the air on the beach.

Oh yeah,
Who's dressing up???
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