October at Last!

Wednesday, October 8, 2014

My favorite month has finally begun and within a week it seems I've done more than I have all summer! Nothing feels as good as fall does, the cold mornings turn to bearable afternoons that fall into crisp windy nights. Between the leaves, the fall flavors, and dressing up, there is something for every sense.

I kicked off the month by taking part in the Asbury Park Zombie Walk which, (leave it to NJ) holds the Guiness Record of "Largest gathering of zombies". If I was to return next year I'd remind myself not to have such an elaborate costume as it took away from my experience. But it was still a great time dressing up and having friendly zombie interactions between strangers! And there are conveniently located bars within a block of the boardwalk for when you really can't feel your feet anymore.

The following day I went to my first wine tasting for
my friend Brenna's birthday at Alba's Vineyard

Followed by yet another day off :D so naturally I went pumpkin picking at Norz Hill Farm with my friend Bethany. I also bought my first apple cider donuts of the season which were unfortunately not very good.

I later met Patti so we could photograph around the "waterfalls" in High Bridge, NJ. I had some fun messing with my camera, I'm still working on the configurations after all this time!

And this is just the first week of October, so I'm looking forward to the rest of it!
This weekend I will actually be working but I plan on visiting the haunted house Brighton Asylum and visiting Jarrett's grandmother. (Not that the two have any correlation ha ha ha.)

Trying something new

Wednesday, September 3, 2014

Big Lebowski knows.

I'd been starting to feel a lot of pressure and negative energy around me from my surroundings. It's due to an abundance of things like the emotional charge of my clients or being in a house that seems to never stop. I felt it was time to take charge and not let things get to me so much. Because what is the point of getting myself worked up over a few dishes in the sink or an overly anxious friend. Of course I am always there and open to people however I don't have to be so empathetic to everyone and everything.

So starting last week on Monday I decided to do yoga. REALLY do yoga. Not the "so called yoga stretches I do while watching tv" I used to do. I set up my mat on my deck and turned on some music and let myself flow. I've found inspiration through multiple instagram accounts & websites. Some days it seems it would be helpful to have guidance but I like the freedom of moving on my own. And jasper definitely enjoys our mornings & sunsets when I let him share a corner of my mat :) (You can see him sitting on the edge in the picture below!)

Day 1

Headstands always stuck out to me so I decided to give them a go after a good session and although I couldn't do the traditional headstand I found this tripod to be a smooth transition! Since there is more surface area on the ground it is much easier to hoist yourself up and it's less pressure on your core (which I have none of!).

Day 3

I was SO happy to be able to do a proper headstand! After spending a lot of time flailing and falling for 3 days I finally did it. And I've been working on it ever since, at first in 15 second intervals & now I'm into a minute. What's interesting is that it wasn't my physical that was holding me back from this pose but rather my fear. My fear of falling, especially on my wooden deck. And after a few tries against a wall I attempted it in space and got it!

Day 7

So one week in and I can say I already see big differences in my energy, flexibility, loss of daily work pains, and an all around good attitude. I'll be keeping my own progress thru my blog so I'm sorry for those who could not care less about this :P If I was constantly posting these on fb or instagram I'd just be annoying but my lack of followers on my blog makes it perfect!

Mr. Yoga has the best collection of yoga poses & explains how to work your way into the pose.

This & That

Saturday, August 23, 2014

I saw this on my sister's blog & I liked the idea so thanks Marine!

The Killing - I recently got into this after Netflix advertised it's final season being released. It encompasses all that I love in a tv series including, murder, mystery, detectives, a good setting (Seattle!), and good character depth. I've been breezing through Netflix in search of a new series to watch and this one won my attention. It's definitely worth checking out if you haven't already.
Besides that Jarrett and I have been spontaneously watching more movies recently which we normally don't do. We caught up on all the bad horror/thriller movies such as...
Sharknado - A+ for absolutely terrible acting, plot line, & script
Grabbers - Bad movie but a funny plot about a monster attacking in Ireland that sucks the blood out of all of its victims unless... they're drunk.
The Bay - A "found footage" movie that I actually enjoyed about something in the waters of Chesapeake Bay, Maryland that is infecting & killing all of it's residents and tourists. I have never enjoyed watching "found footage" type of movies but this one held my interest in the way the plot line grew & that it was relatively realistic in the way people would handle that situation in real life.

After seeing Jersey Boys in theaters I've been listening to a lot of Frankie Valli & the Four Seasons pandora station in my car. Besides that I fell back into Cage the elephant, Rise against, & The Black Keys. I also recently saw Amanda Palmer perform at the Spiegeltent near the hudson river in NY with Patti. Lately I've been searching for some new music so I'm constantly scanning through Songza's mood's or activities options where I stumble upon a few good songs here and there.

Statistics Book - let's just leave it at that eh?
And I've also been reading and catching up on a lot of news articles via CNN for worldly news, & NPR for everything else.

Blogger Watch
Stella wants to die - simple but chic outfits
Little Black Boots - rocks a seriously cute boho vibe.

Running - My parents are back in town visiting so I've been running with my dad in the mornings, it's so much easier when you have a buddy to run with! I am hoping to keep it up even after he flies back home.
Yoga, Stretching, Dancing, etc. - If you want to call it dancing, flailing my limbs, leaping, & twirling to Sia's Chandelier like a 5 year old. No shame, I certainly break a sweat after 10 minutes of it.
Photography - And of course I've been hearing a lot of the shutter button on my camera when I'm baking or hiking, I'm still trying to master the configures.

Drinking :P
Whiskey sours! - Weather I'm at Verve where Mack makes a mean whiskey sour, or at home, I tried making my own sour mix & it was so easy & so delicious!

Amanda Palmer with her husband Neil Gaiman

Life Lately (Seen thru my new camera)

Monday, August 11, 2014

As a late birthday gift my overly generous mom & dad bought me a Canon Rebel T3!
I have had my eye on this series of cameras for a few years now & I can't tell you how exciting it is to finally own my first DSLR. Since I've received it, I've been youtubing tutorials and playing around with the settings everyday. I'm trying to shoot manually every time, so I can better understand how it works, rather than automatic.

Mandatory jasper photoshoot after receiving my camera

We briefly acquired a cat named Shadow when one of my brother's friends lost him after bringing him to our house. He had found him wandering behind an A&P the day before, and was leaving for colorado the next day. We found him a happy family to be with after several nights he spent in our garage, despite jasper's whining and barking.

Jasper being all cute before I leave for work

Messing around with a very cheap wide angle lens I bought on Amazon.

Hugo the grouch hanging with me in the grass outside of work

I baked a strawberry poppyseed pie from a recipe I found on A Beautiful Mess!

Jarrett & I spent our sunday at Tom's River in his grandmother's beach house


Pale ol' me. This picture makes me happy I just got my hair done & fixed today! Pictures soon.

The Drake's at their finest :)

And my pie was a success! Seriously good!

Chicago Roadtrip

Wednesday, July 30, 2014

As always it takes me a while to post but about one month ago my brother Kilian & I decided to take a road trip to Chicago, since his girlfriend Shanna was there as well. She had flown out several days before us and used a couch surfing website to find a free host.

Monday morning I woke up at 6 since my brother had claimed we'd hit the road around 7, in time to make a few stops (quick check, walmart, gas). Of course as I expected, he wasn't ready to leave until around 9. (Not that it made much of a difference with the 12 hour road trip.) So after spending nearly $30.00 on snacks & making rounds searching for american-esque gear to support the US world cup game, we finally really hit the road.

It was my first time actually driving such a distance (my family & I would take longer road trips to the carolina's but I never drove), and I have to say it's a lot more difficult than I imagined. It's fun for the first 6 hours but after that all I remember are the countless rest stops & numbness in my legs. About 70 miles out from Chicago we started to get excited but of course this was short lived as it started pouring harder than I've ever seen before. If I were driving I may have actually stopped and waited it out because generally rains that heavy don't last for more than 15 minutes. Kilian kept driving though in fact picking up speed, which I contested nonstop, practically ripping thru the plastic of the door panel with my fingernails. There was a moment as he moved into the right lane, speeding up, when I felt the tires loose grip and the back of the car fishtail to the right. That's about all I remember before the car completely fishtailed into the next lane and into the median, thankfully missing the car to our left and not running into the opposite sides oncoming traffic. Now when they say everything slows down during an accident or traumatic event they're not kidding I remember every detail of what was probably a 4 second event. Mainly just thinking "okay camille... limp like a jellyfish... limp like a jellyfish". I couldn't tell you why I was thinking that but regardless as soon as the car stopped moving we were shaking unintentionally and intentionally to see if either of us were hurt. And somehow we were both fine (I just scraped up a little skin on loose hinge in the center console but nothing serious.) We both inspected the car after calling AAA and quickly found that although the car was covered in tall grass, the car was completely fine! So we cancelled our AAA request and Kilian easily pulled onto the opposite side of the highway and to my surprise adhered to my requests to stay under 50 mph incase of anything. We cruised on the highway all the way to the Chicago toll booth...

I can't tell you how much of a relief it was to see those glowing red letters. With a new found sense of reassurance and luck we drove slowly into the city, as 10:00 creeped past us. Once in the city it started down pouring once again and my brother grew anxious as we tried to find parking near the hostel we booked with. We decided to park illegally at least to find out if The Chicago Getaway Hostel had some open parking spaces. The first step I took out of the car, the rain was half way up to my ankles. I would have taken pictures to show exactly how flooded the city was if I wasn't fearful of my phone getting water damage. It was probably the worst welcome any locations ever given me, but I won't hold it against Chicago, after all if this is the beginning it can only get better right! So we were directed to a hospital to park where it would be sheltered. After suiting up for the weather we started making our way to the hostel but stopped at a bar and had a few drinks. We also ate our first real chicago deep dish pizza, which was everything I could've ever dreamed of. CHEESEY GLUTENY GOODNESS. Long story short the night ended well after everything the day threw at us and we were out before our heads even hit the pillows.

Our trip was only a few days so we decided to spend most of it visiting the typical tourist spots of Chicago.
Here are only a handful of some memorable moments of the trip!

We visited the bean of course, and one of the culture centers which featured multiple high ceilings & beautiful stained glass. The one I posted here, if you look closely, has all of the astrological signs (reasons unknown to myself). And we spent a good half hour walking into every bar looking to watch the USA vs Belgium game. After walking into multiple bars that were all "standing only" since they were packed we finally settled for an upstairs albanian bar that ended up being a gay bar. It was very entertaining to watch the game & to hear the men catcalling at every close up shot of the soccer players.

The Museum of Science + Industry of Chicago
This museum had a lot of interesting exhibits however next time I may do more research before paying extra for certain seasonal exhibits. We picked 3 special ones and only 1 of them was actually interesting, the other 2 were clearly created for younger children with the information & interactive set ups. The U505 Submarine exhibit was great though!

We spent a lot of time admiring the pier which is backdropped by the beautiful city. I could definitely see myself running or walking Jasper along the water line often if I were to live there.

We visited the Navy Pier which was honestly not very interesting, though I haven't been on a ferris wheel in years so that was enjoyable. We ended up eating some deep dish pizza at a more known location but I wasn't all that impressed with the pizza compared to the one we'd eaten previously at the random bar! Then we headed to the beach to watch the Navy Pier fireworks, unfortunately it started raining so we didnt see much. We ended our night at Buddy Guy's Legends, an old blues club and drank a bit while enjoying a jammy blues band! Afterwards we headed to the beach, where we flipped over a canoe and sat and drank some more while enjoying the waves and the sand.

The next morning was a bit of a rough start, particularly for me I could still feel the abundance of whiskey sloshing in my stomach, and my head felt like a cinder block. Perhaps not the best day to conquer my irrational fear of heights and visit what was considered the tallest building in the world when it was built in 1973. It is now considered the 2nd tallest building in the US & the eighth tallest structure in the world. Regardless, the view from the Willis Tower was absolutely breathtaking. And I somehow mustered the courage to walk into the Sky Deck without cursing out any god's or crying. (Barely)

The wait was long to visit the Willis Tower, so by the time we were done it was time for Kilian and I to head home! We stopped at a food place in Ohio that reminded us of Sonic with their park & be served in your car method. But they also had these trays that they'd hook onto your window which I thought was neat! And the ride home, was a treacherous one but mainly because we drove through the night, thankfully his car didn't meet another median again.

And I was welcomed home by a very happy Jasper, confused on which piggie he liked best.

In conclusion, it was a great trip! Worth the drive out, although next time I'll just book a flight! I've never been one to love cities, but Chicago has proved that there are cities out there I could see myself living in for a few years. It has beautiful architecture, great food, the people were very friendly, it's cleanly, and although it's still a skyscrapin' city I didn't feel completely excluded from nature.