Saturday, May 31, 2008

Today's Sunset

The sun set about two hours ago. As this was happening I chanced to look out of my window. Now, normally, I'd just take note of the beauty God created in each sunset, then merrily go back to whatever it was I was previously doing. But today, I happened to notice something a little peculiar about a certain voluminous cloud.

(Sorry about the reflection of the window pane in the corner. I forgot to turn my light off.)

It is none other than Mickey Mouse looking down on us from above. It kind of reminds me of Mufasa from the Lion King. Here I'll act it out for you, so watch carefully:
Simba, you have forgotten me.
No! how could I?
You have forgotten who you are, and so have forgotten me. Look inside yourself, Simba. You are more than what you have become. You must take your place in the circle of life.
How can I go back? I'm not who I used to be.
Remember who you are. You are my son and the one true king. Remember who you are....
I love that movie. (Disney doesn't make them like they used to.) I especially like the part just before this conversation when Rafiki has Simba look into a reflecting pool to prove that his father is still alive. " That's just my reflection," Simba says. "No, look harder," says Rafiki. "See, he lives in you!" I like to look at this part of the movie from an allegorical perspective.
As a Christian, sometimes I forget myself. I start doing my own thing and completely lose track of the life He's given me. Then I frantically try to find my way back to God again. But, He lives in me. So I don't have to go out there, looking for Him in other things, to find Him. I should be a reflection of Him. Others should see Him through me by the way I act, live my life, treat others, etc.
God has had a similar conversation with me before as well. At that time I was confused as to what I was going to do with the rest of my life. I didn't know where I was going or what exactly I was, to be honest. If I've strayed so far as to not know the significance of my life, I've completely forgotten God! God made me more than what I sell myself short as. To Him I mean more than what I even know. I belong to Him as His child. It is the same for All people. He cares for all His children.
"How precious is Your lovingkindness, O God!
Therefore the children of men put their trust under the shadow of Your wings."
-Psalm 36:7
See? He even says so Himself. This whole psalm is a treasure. One of my favorite psalms. Third Day even wrote a song based on verses 5 and 6. I bet you'll recognize it when you read it!
Well, If any of you didn't like my re-enactment earlier, you can visit this site
to see the clip from the movie. The first six seconds are kinda strange, but it gets better after that.
Until next time, peeps, Hakuna Matata!

Friday, May 23, 2008

The Little Red Bag


My books are here for the weekend! I'm so glad! Now I'll have something to read while we travel to Miami.

And it was the two books that I wanted to read the most. 'Til We Have Faces and The Book Of Lost Tales. Its fascinating how these little red bags can make a person's day.

I guess I was having too much fun with the orbi cam. I should have been packing. I should be packing right now. I'm going to pack.
Have a good Memorial day weekend!

Monday, May 19, 2008

More about Me

Well, I thought that now that I have no classes I'd be able to post more often. But, I've given myself lots of things to do in my free time. In this time I have also been thinking about what I've been doing with myself, aside from school, work, and church. In this self-reflection I have come to find myself quite boring (or odd at the very least). I'm just being honest. See, take a look.
When I have no school work to worry about I immediately turn to my computer. But, of course, there is the usual list of chores and other housework that needs to be kept up. Over the school year I tend to slack off on these. (This kind of shocked me when I realized it, because I remember solemnly swearing as a graduating high school senior that'd I'd never become a slacking college bum.) Anyway, back to housework. Ever since we were little we've had the house divided into three areas, one for each sister. Each sister would maintain her area for a week, and then we'd rotate. The "kitchen area" was always agreed to be the most time consuming part of the house (planning the week's menu, making the grocery list, cooking dinner, etc.). So the kitchen person is the one who gets to ride shotgun when we go out. The upstairs area was agreed to be the easiest area so it was decided that the upstairs person would also maintain the "outdoor" chores (the pool, the animals, watering the plants). The downstairs person is supposed to keep the first floor clean (dusting, vacuuming, etc.).
When this grand little plan was first put into use the boys were still too young to do all those things. Now that they are older they do help out a lot. My sisters and I were told to teach them how to do these chores. We called them our "young padawans" like the Star Wars movies. Now the boys know how to do pretty much everything, except cook. We are kind of afraid to let them cook.
Getting back from the side-track, by this time of the year I usually have the garden planted. I haven't started on this year's yet. I still need to go get some more seeds. This year we got a super cool, shiny red tiller. Dad showed me how to use it when we first got it several weeks ago. Between the two of us, my Dad and I got all the soil turned up in one afternoon! However, we were unable to keep up with it at that time (Dad had work and little league and I still had classes and work). So the grass has grown back over it. Now that I have no more classes I have time to go back and till it up again. But Dad is still at work. And, knowing the kinds of relationships between myself and machinery..... well, lets just say I might break the thing or cause something catastrophic to happen. Then I wouldn't know what to do. And I wouldn't want Dad to worry about it.
Caution: ranting side note.
And what is it with machines anyway? Its like they prefer to be handled by men. They must be male chauvinists. Take the computer, for example. Lets say that it froze (we've all experienced that). What do I do? ctrl + alt + Del. If that doesn't work then I bring up the task manager and force the quit or force it to shut down and restart. But sometimes said computer refuses. "Leave me alone, woman," it says. Then Dad comes to help and shows me what to do. But Dad, you've shown me before, and I did everything right! "Shut up woman!" says computer. "Can't you see that the man is here now?" Then the computer magically goes back to normal, working as if nothing had happened. ggrrhhhh!
Ok, now I feel a little better. Anyway, I'm getting a little impatient about the garden. I have half a mind to just go out there with my ever-loyal garden hoe and hack away at that stupid grass. But I know that if I did that Dad would say, "Why didn't you use the new tiller?" And I don't want to begin that rant again.
Now, in my free time I turn to my computer. Most of the time I will be creating art masterpieces with the GIMP (or trying to, at least). I like to call it "building up my portfolio." And now that I have some spiffy, neat (that's an understatement. Its actually awesomely cool) software on my computer I can also work on web pages and animations!! How sweet is that? Adobe is where its at!
When I get into an "artist's block" (in theory this would be a period of no inspiration) I browse through online galleries (Elfwood and Deviant Art to name a few). It is amazing what people can do nowadays! Maybe I should set up an account for an online gallery. Hmmm.... I just looked through my digital portfolio: very sad. I should start finishing what I start (translation: most of my works are not finished). If I want a decent gallery I've got a lot of work to do!
And when I'm not on the computer I'll read a book, if I have a good book to read. My pleasure reading has suffered greatly since the onset of college life. Woe is me! For I am required to read about strange and foreign ideas such as sociology, and the theory of modernism (which is considered to be art history. Now tell me, does that make sense to you?) But, now that classes are over I am free to read whatever I like! Take THAT you politically biased, liberal ,textbook writers who try to manipulate the impressionable young minds of unwary college students! I am not so easily swayed!! Right now I am waiting for three books I've requested from the county's libraries: 'Til We Have Faces by C.S. Lewis, The Book of Lost Tales by J.R.R. Tolkien, and The Black Swan: The Impact of the Highly Improbable by Nassim Nicholas Taleb (I wish I would have known about the Ludic fallacy while I was taking statistics). I really like the way books can be borrowed and sent and returned via the mail. hopefully they will get hear before the weekend.
I am actually surprised that I have not made time for the playstation yet! I've gotta make some headway in Assassin's Creed. Haha, my youngest brother, Tulkas, just called me his young padawan. He is the best gamer in the house! He's even beaten my sister's friend, Airman-G and some of his friends before! (You go bro!) He says he'll help me out and show me his secret hiding places in Call of Duty. My first-person shooter skills are not so great. I get shot and die 5 seconds after respawning. Its not so much fun being the noob. Give me any other type of video game at anytime and I'll be fine (except for some sport games.)!
Well, if you've lasted through out all of this you are a trooper, or someone with far too much time on their hands (but what's that say about I who wrote it?). Here is my summer time in a nutshell: chores, housework, computer, garden (in due time, in due time), books. Oh! And I'm going on a mission trip to Mississippi this Summer! Can't leave that out. Of course we may occasionally go to the beach or get together with friends also. But I'm content with this. Although, I am praying for big things to happen....

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

To Mom on Mother's Day

Hey Mom,
Happy Mother's Day! This post is especially for you. And so are these pictures (that come up after this little note). I just wanted to say thank you for everything. (That may sound cliche. But I really do mean everything including my brothers and sisters.)

I've decided to make you the "Lady of the Cherry Blossoms," because I know how much you like those flowers. Sorry for the un-creative name, but please remember that I am the child that named her stuffed animal "puppy" because that's what he was.

Here we have Yavanna in a pink rose.
These are some pictures that I had done earlier in the week. I promised you, Mom, that I would blog about them. And now seemed like an appropriate time to do so, because I know you'd like it.

Here we have Ilmarë in a water lily.
I'd write some more stuff, but I figure that actually spending time with you on Mother's Day would be a good idea also. So, Happy Mother's Day!

Final Projects

It sure has been a while since my last post. But now that I have finally finished my Sophomore year at Insertnamehere University I will have more time to blog. I can't make any promises, though. I have a hard enough time keeping up with Facebook and my e-mail.
Well, now that school is out for the Summer let me tell you a little bit about my final projects for this past Spring semester (they are not too boring, I promise!).
The final project for my art design class was to make a self portrait box. In other words, decorate the inside and/or outside of the box with things that you like and things that represent who you are. I had so much fun with this! I felt like I was back in kindergarten again, complete with the purple glue stick that doesn't really work.
My professor had us work on them during class for the last few classes. This proved to be a little troublesome for me. First, I'm a commuter student. So I had to bring all of my supplies with me. But, some of my art supplies can't be left in the car because of the heat and humidity. And there are no little "cubbie holes" or lockers for me to put my stuff. So I had to be really conservative with the materials I chose to use. And those materials that I did decide to bring with me I had to keep with me in my bag ALL DAY LONG! Seriously, I felt like a bag lady walking around campus with an overstuffed (not to mention ridiculously heavy) book bag.
Second, my professor would walk around the room observing our progress. I don't do so well with people looking over my shoulder. It makes my nervous. So, I didn't get too much done in class.
For our final we had to present our boxes and explain the meanings of what was inside. I don't like presentations so much either. Anybody who knows me knows that my answers are short and terse. By the grace of God I was able to stretch my presentation out to the allotted seven minutes. I must have been nervous, though, because I can't remember what I said.
Here is my box:

It didn't really help that I dropped the box on my way to class on the day of the final. I still haven't been able to put everything back the way it was (I should have used a better glue stick!). Basically, it is just some sketches I did in class to help pass the time. I strung some little trinkets that my grandma and my Dad gave me on a string. And I put a poem by Jose Marti ("Cultivo Una Rosa Blanca") in there along with three white roses to go with it. The dove was the symbol of the Holy Spirit in the Bible. So the little dove above the pink ribbon represents my faith in Christ.

I had just newly rediscovered the oil pastels that the art teacher I used to assist had given me. Of course I have a lot of refining to do with my technique, but I really like the way that the colors blend so well together. I could go on a little further about this box, but I'd really like to tell you about my Digital Art project.

For my Digital Arts class I had to find a client and design a website around their description. At first I thought this would be fun. But then, in my infinite sagacity, I had to go and pick a client with an ambiguous request. "It will give me more lee-way for creativity," I thought. But it was too ambiguous. I hard time coming up with ideas. So I asked Mom if she could think of any. That was mistake number two. She suggested that I do a site advertising a new brand of toilet paper.
I was tired of thinking. So I went with it and started gathering resources and info right away. That was mistake number three.
So I put together a rough layout of the home page for the preliminary review that we had to turn in. It so happened that mine was used as an example of how not to do your webpage. So the whole class got a grand preview of my pathetic little, "Suavemente Toilet Paper! America's favorite since 2008! Nothing Gets Left behind!" website. That made a little piece of my heart die. By this time I was no longer "thrilled" with working on this project. The process itself was fine. I had no problem with that. I had just picked a not so fun (and actually rather embarrassing) subject. Nevertheless, I did my best to make it look good and authentic. I decided to make it a satire of conservation, environmental safety, and trustworthy, longstanding businesses. So I made everything ridiculously exaggerated or completely nonsensical. This way it wouldn't seem so pathetic. At least thats what I think.
On our last work day before the final my professor went around to help with last minute problems and stuff. And he gave me a priceless compliment: "Oh, that looks good. I'd wipe my butt with that." There you have it. My digital arts final project is bathroom worthy. And that little piece of my heart is beginning to recover.