transitional spaces into adulthood

a new year…

Today, is my one year anniversary of independence. I’ve been reminded a number of times that I need to focus more on the positive things I accomplished and not focus on the negative. I don’t normally do a year in review but after some thought, I truly have done so much this year to be grateful for. On April 1st, 2015 I separated myself from a huge negative part of my life and gradually took bigger steps towards the person I want to be. Since then, I have lost 30 pounds with just eating moderately and having a more active life style. I spent a lot of time reflecting on who I want to be and the kind of attitude I want to have towards my life.


In the last year, I bought a new condo, made some new friends, shaved the back of my head, started baking again, taught myself how to make ice cream, how to plant grass, install a closet and learn to let go of the things in this life one can live without (like a dying futon no one wants). I donated about $1,000 worth of clothing and house hold items to charity. With the help of a friend, I made a new website and logo for The gallerist. I even traveled, making so many memories with my friends and family.

PicMonkey Collage1

Top: Ravina in the rain; Top Left: broken futon I finally decided to throw away; Middle Left: Tightwad Brewery, new favorite spot; Middle Right: new condo; Bottom Left: finally taking the kayak out for a spin; Bottom Right: Ravina fun.

Nothing will ever really compare to the commitment I made to myself last April about pushing myself forward and making a point to always look after myself first through tough times. You can’t skip these good parts. They are what makes your life so valuable and it’s not easy. It’s the hardest thing I’ve ever had to do. To focus on just getting myself healthy, mentally and physically. It’s a struggle and each day is a struggle but I am so much happier with the place I am today than I was a year ago. I couldn’t do it without my friends and family. It’s made a huge difference on my life. I still have a ways to go but I’m much closer to my goals now than I’ve ever been.

PicMonkey Collage2

Top: Me learning to be sexy and happy with the body I have; Middle Left: Door County with friends enjoying the last of fall weather; Middle Right: shaved the back of my head; Bottom Left: Decorated my studio with arrow love; Bottom Right: Kelly and I dress up for Halloween as dead trick or treaters.

PicMonkey Collage3

Top: Christkindlemarket; Middle Left: last sunrise at the Waukegan apartment; Middle Right & Bottom Left: Fourth of July with Liza, Jake & Sarah; Middle Bottom: Door County fire; Bottom Right: Robin & Carl enjoying Christkindlmarket.

PicMonkey Collage4

Top: “Tokyo Shawl” I knitted in Canada; Middle Left: knitted monsters & hedgehog; Middle Right: Monster cookies; Bottom Left: More knitted monsters; Bottom Right: first time making coffee ice cream!

PicMonkey Collage5

Top two images: Urban Edge group art show & Dryhop Brewers solo exhibit; Middle Left and Bottom Left: taking the kayak out; Middle Right: succulents are taking over my new condo; Bottom Right: voted in the presidential primaries. 

PicMonkey Collage8

Top: Enjoying the last of fall with friends in Door County; Middle Left: Stephanie and I at Christkindlemarket; Middle Right: Robin, Carl & I cutting down our first Christmas tree; Bottom Left: Showing Meryl and Stephanie my new home in Libertyville; Bottom Right: Showing Kat and Paul my new home.

Pillow Maintenance

I know it doesn’t seem like much and really when you look at it logically it isn’t much but certain things have emotional weight to them. Even when you don’t realize or willing to recognize it can be blocking you from moving forward.

During my drive home from my holiday excursion a bottle broke open on one of my favorite pillows. There really wasn’t anything I could do to save it except to wash it when I got home. I’ve had this set of channel pillows since my parents remodeled their house in the early 2000’s. Once I figured out the pillow could be saved I patched a hole on the side of it that had been there for as long as I remember. I can’t tell you why I never fixed it except to say that my depression made it impossible to fix. Each of these pillows has a similar tear from over the years.

Today, I am washing, drying and mending each one. So now when ever I look at them they will never say back to me, “You’ll poke your eye out” in my ex-boyfriend’s caring teasing tone as I rest my head on a small pile of safety pins that used to hold it together. The stuffing will no longer fall out and gratefully they won’t remind me of my life from over a year ago. It’s hard to imagine how my life has changed in 2015. I did everything humanly possible to make my life whole again. It’s silly to think that this little square pillow is a representation on how far I’ve come but even this post is testament to that. I’m writing again. So as I embark into the weeks head I will keep striving towards my next year’s resolutions.



i scream for monster ice cream

So I think most people know how excited I’ve been to be able to start making ice cream. Well instead of sleeping last night I was putting together some ideas for what I wanted to do. I obviously have this plan to make ice cream. I also have no intention of getting fat and eating it all myself. So I wanted to put together some containers and labels and this is what I came up with so far.

I want to get some plain pint size containers to put the labels on and then the image shown below is more for when people come over. They are 8oz cups. So good for single serving and has a dome lid.

I found some really neat labels online but I decided I wanted to make monster ice cream with teeth 🙂 Yup I’m weird. Can’t wait to print these.

 ice cream collage 2

ice cream collage

Bedroom Mania

My lovely brother-in-law helped me paint my bedroom. I am so fortunate to have him in the family because I am not handy at all. I had this idea that it would be nice to do an accent wall with a dark purple brown. I’ve been decorating my condo in my mind for months now and put together a board of ideas and color schemes to keep me motivated (click here). The idea I ended up settling on was an all white room with this dark accent wall. Below, is a picture of the Pinterest idea (which I got here) and my final product. I am so happy with it.

bedroom copy

It’s my hope to actually construct some deer antlers by knitting them instead of having the real thing in my room. Haven’t decided yet.

Fourth of July

I had an amazing Fourth of July. My family got together for a reunion we do every five years. A lot of people showed up. We had a picnic out at a forest preserve in Northern Illinois. I got a lot of knitting done but also got to meet some family I’ve never met before. It was a lot of fun. I was in charge of making the invitations and I think I did a pretty good job.


I had tried to copy a few different designs but in the end I just had to make it up on my own. I used iDesign and bought a few fun holiday fonts to give it that hand written feel. Obviously, I’ve erased some of the personal information that was written on the back of the postcard.

We were also asked to bring a dish to pass. I had found a cute recipe for chocolate covered pretzels that I wanted to try (click here). Below, is the Pinterest idea and next to it is my final product. I they turned out better in person and they were so yummy! I made two bags worth of pretzels and still have chocolate left over.



There has been a lot of changes for 2015. I can’t believe we are already half way through the year. I recently moved into a condo a few towns away and I’m slowly starting to unpack. My family and friends have been a huge help with the moving process and getting settled in. Over the last week, I have been painting the 2nd Bedroom, in hopes to start unpacking my art supplies and use it as my studio. I found a really neat suggest on Pinterest (click here) and copied the effect with frog tape. Here is the original idea posted with the progression of my 2nd bedroom. Let me know what you think!

2nd Bedroom Collage 2



I started watching Girls when Season 3 came out. I really couldn’t stand it the first time I watched it. There was something about the vapidness of the four girl friends that I really couldn’t stand but it really surprised me when I watched the next episode and then the next. Completely hooked I’ve watched all three seasons three times now. I don’t maybe I relate to the main character, Hannah, the more I get to know her or maybe their friendships remind me how complicated people can be.


The thing that impressed me was the dialog they were having about themselves, about their life style (though sometimes idyllic or despotic) and what it is to be a struggling twenty something looking for their voice. That is a topic I completely can relate to and what this blog is all about.


One other thing I found amazing, is that the actress who plays Hannah, Lena Dunham, created, stars and directs the whole series. I find her talent and voice very inspiring and very unapologetic. Which is very brave and beautiful. It is inspiring to see someone achieving what they strive out to do and I hope that will some day be me too.



Books & Flowers

PicMonkey Collage

I had a surprising rough day today despite today. Early this morning I went to the Lake Forest Library Book Sale. I look forward to this ever year and I finally got in early to pick up the books I was interested in taking a look at. Below is the list of books I picked up:

  1. Moby Dick
  2. Treasure Island
  3. Of Mice and Men
  4. To Kill a Mockingbird
  5. The Call of the Wild and the White Fang
  6. The Sea Wolf
  7. The Last of the Mohicans
  8. Frankenstein
  9. Journey to the Center of the Earth
  10. Lord of the Flies
  11. 20 Leagues Under the Sea
  12. Animal Farm
  13. Walden and Civil Disobedience
  14. The Great Gatsby
  15. The Portable Jack Kerouac
  16. Swan’s Way
  17. Mrs. Dalloway
  18. The Complete Encyclopedia of Stitchery
  19. Lolita
  20. For Whom the Bell Tolls


I’m pretty excited but it is a hefty list. Not all of the Sci-Fi is for me but I’m pretty enthusiastic with everything I found for .50c – $2 per book. If you are in the area this weekend be sure to check it out. I’ve been going my whole life and it’s not something to miss. Afterwards, I walked through a garden for a few minutes and snapped this pretty photos.


Farmer’s Market & Pioneer Woman Saturday

LF Collage

The Lake Forest Farmer’s Market in downtown Lake Forest (by the train station) was really quite wonderful this morning. I had a rough evening missing mom last night but this morning I got up early, got my nails done, drank some coffee and stopped off at the Farmer’s Market. In truth, I completely forgot it was there. I NEVER have Saturdays off and in fact I have work later this afternoon but this morning I needed a change of pace. Ask and you shall receive. I did not take these photos but you get the idea.


I had such a nice time walking around with my Starbucks. It is a beautiful morning with barely any humidity. If you live in the Chicago area you would know just how humid it has been the last couple months. It is so nice to have a break from the wet, sticky atmosphere. At the farmer’s market, I bought corn and cantaloupe which turned out to be musk melon. Whoops. Which I’ve since learned is a cantaloupe but not the same one we normally eat. I also bought red potatoes from Lake Forest College that smell heavenly.


The print below was painted by Mark McMahon. He is a local, extraordinary, artist. I have had the pleasure of getting to know his oldest daughter Meryl, who went to the same college as myself. It gives you a nice idea of what downtown Lake Forest looks like and the kind of community I grew up in. He is opening a brand new artist studio for his whole family. Be sure to check it out later this month!

01^Lake Bluff Farmers Market New Green

Now I am finally relaxing at my Dad’s house watching Pioneer Woman make potato soup till I have to go to work. Happy Saturday.

Cooling of the Embers

You put your hand on top of mine,
You’re talking fast but talking blind,
And i cant bring myself to meet your eyes,
Cause death is slowly covering you and galaxies are black and blue,
And when under your skin all these colours bloom,
And you only have you like someone left,
A frail body and took the rest.

But i remember when you were strong,
And never wanted help from no one,
What you become is not who i remember,
Is this the cooling of the embers.

She’s back again through summers passed,
The smell of the rain and fleshly cut grass,
Seems those ordinary day are the ones that last,
Oh cause he was there, the one you loved,
The one you never could let go of,
And theres something you know as your looking now,
But you only have you like someone left,
A frail body and stole the rest.

But i remember when you were strong,
Never wanted help from no one,
What you become is not who i remember,
Is this the cooling of the embers.

Is this the cooling of the embers,
Cause you are not who i remember,
Its like you were a child, you were a child,
You were a child once more,
And all of our yesterdays have gone.

You put your hand on top of mine,
You’re talking fast but talking blind,
And I can’t bring myself to meet your eyes.


A topnotch WordPress.com site

transitional spaces into adulthood

All Arrow Reunion

Reunion News for Alpha Sigma Pi Alumni


transitional spaces into adulthood

Robert Santafede Photography

Still Life, Portraits, Urbex

The Great Photo Adventure

Because all the cool kids are doing it.


knitting it up in a big way

The WordPress.com Blog

The latest news on WordPress.com and the WordPress community.

%d bloggers like this: