Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Tag! You're It!

My Lovely Aunt CoCo over at Easy Street tagged me and I have to say thanks for the no-brainer post! Since I don't have enough of a blog family to tag back besides Emma over at Oh No, Emma Dear, I'll just let whoever stumbles upon my lil ol blog to feel free to copy and's a free post!
You're Welcome!

What’s your staple meal (ie. what meal do you cook most often when you can’t be bothered to be adventurous)?
Hmm...Considering that it's almost ALWAYS that I'm strapped for time/inspiration/ingredients for dinner, the staples we make for dinner are also the ones in regular rotation! The Menu at Chez Wood includes BLT's, Ceasar salad and french bread, Quick and dirty nachos and, Husband's favorite, take and bake pizza. I'm a regular Betty Crocker, no?

What do you want to be when you grow up?
Old, Happy, Wise....oh that's not what you meant? Ideally I'd love to be writing still, possibly for a magazine or if inspiration ever strikes, a book and i'd love to have the flexibility and stability to be able to work from home/shorter hours so that when the time comes to have mini-mes running around I can be there like my mom was for me.

What book are you reading at the moment (if any)?
This is what my nightstand looks like currently:

And yes, I'm in the process of reading or re-reading all of them. I've been known to have a handful of books in the process of being read or re-read for the hundreth time.

How do you relax?
Reading and watching movies is definitely how I unwind. Nothing like focusing on someone else's problems to take the edge of a completely rotten day, right? I also unwind on the commute home, even in bumper to bumper traffic no less! And of course, escaping to the "cabin," otherwise known as Mom and Dad's house, can make a weekend feel like a week's vacation.

What color are the interior walls of your home?
I live in an apartment, I cannot be bothered to paint and decorate, only to take it down a mere 12 mos. later. Therefore, all of our walls are a beige color and I'm ok with that.
Someday, however, I will have a purple living room, a robin's egg blue dining room, a red kitchen and a black and white bedroom and Big Sister will make it all look chic and elegant, just as it looks in my head.

What is your guiltiest pleasure?

This week it's Pretzel M&M's and sugar-free popsicles. And always, Diet Coke.
Non food-wise it's magazines, magazines, magazines. I'm pretty sure I single handedly keep the magazine industry afloat....

What time is bedtime and getting up time?
Bedtime for me is usually around 11 p.m. unless I have to get up early (we're talking early like 4 a.m., which I have to do on Fridays) and then it's 10/10:30. Wake-up time during the week is 6:45 so that Husband and I can leave with enough time for the commute to Capitol City and be at work at 8:30.
Weekends are a different story, bedtime is whenever I get tired and can be as late as 1 and 2 a.m. and I wake up anywhere between 9:30 and.....I'm ashamed to admit 11:30.
This lil chicky requires a lot of sleep and I don't have kids yet, so it's OK!

How long do you spend reading blogs (per day or per week)?
Per day, probably about an hour or so, and I love discovering new blogs and catching up by going through their archives. Some new "friends" I've recently discovered are Scary Mommy, Spontaneous Clapping and Vodka Mom and of course, Easy Street I love it when they post something new and getting to peek into their lives and visit for a bit.

Easy like Sunday morning

In an attempt to escape the 100+ degree heat, the husband, in-laws and I all decided to find refuge in the lovely Sierra Mountains.
Namely Donner Lake, where on the drive up snow could still be found in small patches alongside the road and capping the surrounding mountains.
After a 5-mile bike ride around the lake— Mother in-law and I checking out the quaint cabins for rent and sale along the water's edge, the boys more than likely checking out the bikini-clad beauties sunning themselves on the public piers— we decided we had more than deserved a break on the beach and a swim in the lake (Oh yes I did go swimming!)
This was the view from my plastic beach chair:

And this was the extent of our late-afternoon activities:

By the time we returned home, the triple digit heat had subsided considerably and all that remained of our afternoon was funky sunburns for Husband (tops of feet, in between toes and knees...was he drunk when he applied sunscreen?!), a mosquito bitten eyelid for me and the complete and total relaxation to not care about our ailments.

Sorry for the late post!

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Stellar Saturday

Summer got off to a slow start here on the West Coast but it's certainly making up for lost time now! We had chilly temps throught May but now we're weathering triple digit heat and our poor AC, which we had previously vowed not to turn on 'til July, is working overtime.
The sweltering heat means that there are only a few places of refuge to kill time 'til sundown when it cools down: The movies and the mall.
Luckily, I kept my part-time job at Le Crew so holing up in the mall's air conditioning is called work for me!
After a quick and fun shift at Le Crew, I decided to take a walk around the mall and do a little post-work shopping. Because really, what good is the part-time job's income but for new clothes? That's what I thought.....
Which leads me to my find of the day.
In need of new "weekend" jeans, I headed for Gap and balked at the $75 price tag. A friend suggested I give Old Navy's jeans a second chance after I explained the fact that their jeans were too low cut for me and were made with too much spandex (no one likes jeans that fit perfectly until you've worn them a half-hour and then they're bagging in the seat and you're hiking them up every 30 seconds).
I stopped a sales girl in her tracks and complimented her on her cute jeans. When she confirmed that they were, in fact, Old Navy's Weekend jean I demanded she show me where I could try a pair for myself.
She lead me to the sacred spot and I grabbed a few different sizes, just to be safe.
I didn't need the extra sizes though, my size fit PERFECTLY and I was told that they would stretch just enough to give that perfect "lived-in" relaxed look.
Happy, I marched to the register and did my best to ignore the rest of the cute tops and dresses on the way.
"Oh, did you know these jeans were on clearance?" the cashier asked.
I was more than prepared to pay the $34 for a perfectly fitting pair of Weekend Jeans, but clearance?! I can handle that.
"No, how much are they then?" I asked, trying not to sound too eager in case she had the power to reverse the clearance price or discovered an error in that my perfect jeans were not, in fact, marked down.
"$11" she said. "Actually, we're doing a store-wide sale of 30% off everything so actually they're going to be $8"
Jeans for less than $10? And Jeans that fit perfectly no less?
"Sold" I said.
With the change, I treated myself to Jamba Juice and upon returning home, I got a high-five from Husband for my ability to bargain shop so well.
It's the little things people...

Megan and the Delegates

Earlier this week, I was asked to photograph a luncheon of some of New Job's head honchos meeting with delegates from Japan at a local mansion. I was told lunch would be over at 1:30 so to be on the safe side, I decided to arrive at 1:15 to scope out a decent picture locale and to allow for the trek over (in 90+ degree heat I might add).

Mid-video editing I glanced over at my desk clock and, oh crap, it was 12:52 and the mansion was several blocks over. I jumped up from my desk, grabbed the camera and detachable flash and assembled the camera en-route to the elevator.

I was told there would be a butler (A BUTLER!) expecting me and that he would show me to the room where the luncheon was being held. However, when I arrived at the mansion the front door was merely cracked and there was no butler to be seen.

Keeping calm, I tip toed down the long hallway until I began to hear voices in the room at the end of the hall. 'Perfect, this is it' I thought. Except, upon closer eavesdropping, the voice I heard was giving a history of the mansion and the former governor who'd called the place home.

"Oh great, this is a school tour...I'm supposed to be photographing Japanese delegates and presidents of big companies and I've got the room with the Girl Scout tour....where the F is this thing?"

Apparently my standing outside the barely open door caught the eye of the tourguide who said to his audience "And that will have to do because I think your photographer is here."

Wait, what?!

I looked at my watch, it was only 1:15! I thought I was EARLY but they're finished? That mean's technically....I'm LATE!

I nervously walked into the room where dozens of Japanese business men smiled at me, and I attempted as best I could to avoid eye contact with the Head Honcho's from New Job.

The Tourguide, who wound up being the Butler too, brought me a step ladder and Head Honchos herded the delegates over to a corner of the room for their photo session.

As the room was a touch on the dark side I quickly tested the light and shot a few test photos when I noticed the flash wasn't going off.

And that's when I remembered, per Boss' request, I store the flash sans batteries. My batteries were back at my desk, in the camera bag where I'd stashed them after the last photo assignment.

"Uhm excuse me, sir? You wouldn't happen to have any double A batteries I could borrow....I seem to have left mine," I quitely and quickly asked the Butler.

I nervously turned back to the corner where Head Honchos and Japanese Delegates were all standing, looking at me expectedly like "What kind of photographer is this?! Shouldn't she be taking the D*** picture now? We're hot, we're in suits and WE'RE BORED!"

Butler came back with two boxes of batteries and said "I don't know if these are any good but you're welcome to try."

Gee, thanks....because that doesn't make me look more like a prized idiot.

I quickly jammed the batteries into the flash, silently cursing myself and praying to God that I get a decent shot.

I once again turned back to my group of waiting Suits who were now coughing and chuckling uncomfortably.

Ok, I get it guys you've had your lunch and you're ready to get this picture over with so you can go....I'm sorry, I'm an idiot today.

Holding the camera I climbed up the three steps of the step ladder, careful not to flash too much leg or un-wrap the fold of my conservative black wrap dress. As I stepped up to the third step (a mere 2 1/2 feet of the ground, mind you) the room erupted in a unison "oooohhh" not totally unlike the aliens in Toy Story.

Panicked that I'd had a wardrobe malfunction or missed one of the Suits passing out from heat stroke or dropping dead from the sheer boredom of waiting for the photographer (me), I looked up to see that what they were Ooh-ing at

Confused, I gave a few nervous giggles and tugged my dress closed just out of precaution.

"Don't fall" one of the Suits said.

It's not even 3 feet, you're OOOhing for THAT?

And just like that, whooosh, it started at my toes and took off to my head, I felt my face turn an embarrased bright red Hot Pink.

"Alright everyone squeeze in and SMILE" I nervously said.

Click, Click, Click and.... No flash.

Screw it, I thought. You can fix it in photoshop, just take the damn picture and get OUT OF THERE!

"Oh, do you want me to turn up the lights, is it too dark in here" Butler asked.

"Uhm, yeah, that'd be great" ANYTHING to get more light in here and PLEASE God, let me be able to fix this in photoshop, I thought.

A few more clicks of the camera and I was done.

"Ok thank you everyone, that was great," I said, already planning my hasty exit.

But before I could begin my decent from the stepstool that apparently rivals Everest three of the Suits started toward me, arms outstretched with.....Cameras.

"Oh, you want pictures too?" DAMN

"Ok, and you, too? Oh and you Sir? Ok sure"

Back up Everest I went, two cameras in each hand, plus one around my neck.

"Let's see how well I can juggle, shall we?" I said, expecting the room to at least chuckle a little.

YOU COULD HEAR CRICKETS....they stared at me blankly again as if to say "just take the damn picture, lady"


I quickly hung the cameras off each of my arms like a giant, camera Christmas Tree and snapped the fastest round of pictures I could manage.

"Alright that oughta do it, thank you all, have a wonderful time in Sacramento,"

And with that I hopped down from Everest (to another chorus of Oooohs) and bolted.

I'm pretty sure I left skid-marks.

At least those Japanese Delegates will have a fun story about the dingy, camera juggling California photographer......

Monday, June 21, 2010

Case of the Mondays

After several busy weeks at work, it's high time this girl get back into the swing of things. Not only have I hosted a younger sister while she undergoes training for a new job, worked my usual 8-5 and picked up shifts at J.Crew, this busy chick has also been freelancing for the magazine that I interned for 2 glorious years ago.

So while I have kept plenty busy outside of the blogosphere, I have a restless audience (Hi, mom!) that's relentless in letting me know how much I've slacked.

Plus I've missed it....

Because Mondays get such a bad rep (albeit deserved) I figured I'd start out with a few things that really made my day (or not).

First the 'Or Not's':

-Thanks a lot audio input on the Mult Box at last week's convention for only revealing how much you distort the sound AFTER I've exported the 6 minute video I edited down from an hour, and therefore deeming it necessary to splice together the audio and video SEPERATELY, 'cuz that will only take about a million years!

- Thanks a lot HORMONES for making any ounce of inconvenience seem like the end of the world. Oh, and for that crying jag I had in the car. Super-fun!

- Thanks a lot hole in the ozone for my lovely sunburn. I look (and feel) really cute in this shade of red!

-Thanks a lot mom and dad, for sharing that darn link that transports me to the BVI's....only through my computer screen, because that doesn't make me want a vacation but at all!

Now the thanks for real:

-Thank you to my boss' husband for taking time out of his afternoon to walk me through Audacity over the phone, I think my computer would have taken a 15 story leap out the window if you hadn't have been so patient.

- Thank you Audacity for helping me splice the audio back with the video so that my project doesn't look like a bad Jackie Chan movie

-Thanks to those darned hormones, for that lets me know that I am not in fact pregnant and my life can resume normalcy after a 7 day hiatus (TMI! TMI!)

- A Big thank you to my wonderful husband for putting up with said hormones and the aforementioned crying jag, for if it weren't for you, there are days that I might be tempted to take a 15 story leap out my office window

- There is no thank you in disguise for the sunburn, this sucks, and I hate looks all wrong on my face and my necklaces and shirts hurt my shoulders and chest. I'm not thankful for you at all

and finally,

- Thank you mom and dad for finally taking a vacation, you guys deserve it and the time away from all of us girls only means you're that much happier to see us when you come home. That, and you'll be that much more relaxed for our family vacation in July.

In closing, I'd also like to give a shout out to Me, who is allowing herself the pleasure of devouring Dreyer's Chocolate Peanut Butter Cup ice cream while watching Sex and the City reruns.

You're welcome!