29 June 2009

Post-it Stop Motion

I love this concept. He really pulled this off... amazing!

23 June 2009

what the FREAK.

This is what I woke up to this morning.

22 June 2009

Feel it feel it

I just wanna wriiiite! So I'm going to! I'm supposed to be designing a wedding invitation. Which I'm looking forward to. But... I got distracted by facebook (I set my official URL, by the way: www.facebook.com/laurel.hulme ... isn't that exciting? No, not really.). And then I thought, "well... it's already 10pm... do I want to start designing now?" And maybe I do. Sometimes my best work is done throughout the late late night; that's especially applicable when I'm editing videos.

Look out! We are! Rhythm! Bandits! B B B B B B B B BANDITS!!!

Sometimes I get this crazy burst of energy. It's kind of weird. When it happens it makes me want to write anything and everything and, yeah, that's why I started writing this [web]log in the first place. Or sometimes I just jump up and down.

So, for at least a year, I've been watching Imogen Heap's videoblogs on YouTube, and they're absolutely fantastic. In case you haven't heard of them, she has been making videos every week outlining her process of inventing the innovative, funky and brilliant songs that will be on her new album. I just watched the one where she finished her album. It's kind of crazy to think of that album being finished, since I've been watching her process this entire time. I feel like this is going to be so much more rewarding for me to get this album--I already have songs that I'm specifically looking forward to; not only that--I have SECTIONS of songs that I'm looking forward to--I have instruments that my ears are anticipating, moments that my soul is seeking. I am genuinely going to miss her vBlogs. Sad to see them go. She also was the reason I started tweeting, and on her very very very last vBlog, she said something about a crazy live show where she will improvise and tweet on stage. Cool. I may or may not have teared up when she played us out at the end of that video.

She's so crazy. I can't believe some of the instruments she's used on this album, and some of the not-instruments she's been crazy enough to try. I love it. This one time, being a typical percussionist, I took two nails that I found in the laundry room and walked around the room beating wildly on the walls, detergent bottles, water heater, pipes, window, doornobs, and countless other things, in crazy sporatic rhythms. It was exhilirating. And there were some awesome sounds found in that. I love that Immi has taken her ear for musical paint and thrown everything unexpected onto her canvas. It's going to be such a piece.

[] I have now written three things that I have erased, and I'm not sure what to really write. I'm thinking about how I like a lot of musicians who have really bad voices. Funny, cause sometimes I hate it when people can't sing. But I guess if they're not trying to be good, they don't have to be. I was going to start the next sentence with "every once in a while" but I'd better start it with "quite often" instead. Quite often, I define things very specifically... and sometimes during that process, I realize that I've defined a case in which the exact opposite of what I said is also true. Example? Um.... okay, ... um.... I can't think of any. So I think that maybe that's confusing. What the? Why am I even writing in here. No one reads these. Seriously sooo pointless.

I had a Xanga back in the day. I reread some of the things there. Fun. I was awkward for a good deal of my life. I still am. But I liiike it. Whateverrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrr. Wow, addict. I couldn't stop hitting that R. But my point about the Xanga thing was that it's kind of fun to see what I was up to and read some old things. Okay, I'm really done here. I think I'll come back tomorrow and erase half of this. Maybe. But I might leave it and come back and actually get what I meant on this fine Monday evening. I mean, I get it now, but what I love about myself, is that I'll get it in 5 years too, and maybe even remember this moment. Is it wrong to feel a funny little affection toward your future self, as if it is a different person entirely?

I read somewhere that Chris Kirkham was listening to Sleepwalk, a Robot. I've actually never listened to them before, and something happens to me when I see a band name that I don't recognize: I have to discover. Sleepwalk, a Robot is a great band. I feel kind of happy listening to them. Then I miss you a little bit too.

I decided today that I don't drink enough water. So I went kind of crazy and drank my CamelBak (bottle) full in 30 seconds. And then I refilled it. A few times. So apparently it builds up. I went to the park to sit and write, and I had to go to the bathroom 4 times within an hour. And then the ranger closed the bathroom and I almost threw Harry Potter and the Half Blood Prince at his car. I was forced to drive home to use the bathroom. I have to go again. This was a bad experience with becoming healthier by drinking an absurd amount of water. But I'll probably do it again tomorrow.

I just decided to have a photoshoot with Erika and Sam at 6am at the coast on Friday. Awesome.

K I really have to go. Suddenly this post title has a whole new meaning.

One day, I'm going to be applying for a really important job, and someone really important is going to stumble on this post, and there will be an awkward moment in a really important job interview.

21 June 2009


[ I wonder how many of them were fathers. ]

I don't feel like I can say much. But this is the first time I've looked at a list, and it changes things when you're staring at your own city wondering what those people might have wanted to do with their lives. It changes things when you think about 4,296 people who wanted to live. I wonder how many of them were fathers, or wanted to be. And I feel really blessed to have mine.

17 June 2009


I miss Praha.

Just found out that one of my friends just moved there for a semester. Mad jealous.

Love it here. But. I miss Praha.

13 June 2009

Missing Idaho

I could combine my two [web]logs but... I'm not going to. I like to keep the photo and the writing separate; and sometimes they complement each other. So here's a link to my photo one; my recent post is about missing Idaho a bit:


Secondly, this is fantastic:

11 June 2009

Happy Things

I've been able to hang out with my mom a lot since I've gotten home from Europe. I love that girl so much. She's so awesome. I just feel like she's become such a good friend in the last several years. We go hiking together, watch movies together, talk about books, make plans, and laugh all the time. For the most part, Dad isn't a big fan of my music, so I don't really play it around him. But mom likes the music mixes I make for her, and sometimes I catch her dancing in her seat when my music's on. She jokes now more than ever and sometimes we see or hear something and bust up laughing at the same time. And last night I accidentally sent my text to her instead of Twitter, and she thought it was funny, so as she walked out of the room to go to bed, she texted me, "Nite." Hahaha. I swear she gets younger every year. And you know, it's not just that. Sometimes I get frustrated with her (she's family, right? Cause it makes perfect sense to get angry at the people you love most... I'm an idiot.), but she takes it and lets me get over it when I need that time, or else puts me in my place. It means a lot to have someone who supports and loves me so much, who is proud of my freakish quirkiness and really believes that I am unstoppable. There's nothing like a mother. And definitely nothing like this one. I could go onnnn but I'll let you find out for yourself. She's completely awesome.

Today she made wheat bread from wheat she ground herself, and it's the best frickin thing in the world. I had it with honey from Mike and Katie's bees in Concord. Holy homemade heaven bread!

I... was about to start a huge paragraph about personally meaningful nothingness, but I changed my mind. I'm going to bed. Goodnight world!

05 June 2009

The Last Installment of the Travel Journal

Italy, Greece, and the end of the trip

19 May

Alright, I have a lot to catch up on. Italy kind of sucks. Well, I guess that's not fair. I had a lot of fun while I was there, and there was some wonderful scenery on the train. But I would be fine never going back there on vacation again. Maybe to learn Italian or something. It’s just really dirty. Venice was fun, but Italy in general is pretty blegh. [what? Blegh isn’t a word? It should be…]. Rome really sucked. Although it was fun to see some of the sites. And I did have an Italian lover downstairs. … I’m glad we left when we did. His friend from the restaurant came and asked if we wanted to have drinks with them after they got off work; shame we had an early train. Yeah that conversation would have been interesting, considering the fact that he spoke like 20 words of English. He was one beautiful Roman, though. So after Rome, we took a train to Brindisi (um, pretty sure they have siesta there), and the place was pretty sketchy, and the roads were completely abandoned, with a few super-friendly people from Nigeria walking around. We did have some really good bruschetta and paninis. Like the best food we’d had in a looong time (Rome thinks they’re so cool with their tiny servings and outdated pastries and hours of waiting… but they’re NOT!).

Oh! I should mention that Vatican City is great. St. Peter’s Basilica is quite spectacular. I paid a few euros to go to the top and walk around the dome (I chose not to take the elevator to save myself 2 euros and be [adventurous?]. holy hundreds of steps!), and that was really cool. There are tons of these pictures made entirely of little tiny tiles, and paintings all over, on the ceiling and all… and the Sistine Chapel… Okay, I half hated it because there were TONS of people in there, and it took forever—forever—walking through the Musei Vatican—up and down, around, straight, through fifty rooms, back up… goodness gracious. The parat in the center with God and Adam touching fingers, The Creation of Adam … it’s really beautiful. I couldn’t stop looking at it. [inserted note: I just finished East of Eden, and … wow, what a novel. Really incredible, and I love the parallels to be found]

So. Back to Brindisi. Great food, abandoned streets, lots of very polite people from Africa, crazy-driving Italians (taxi driver), you know. Same ole same ole. Took an overnight ferry to Patras. So, there were something like 10 passengers, and all the other people were truck drivers and merchant marines. It was so fun! They were all really nice. Got to Patras in the morning, met a very nice Greek woman who helped us get to Piraeus. We took a train (after having a mini-church, complete with everything except the sacrament :P) to some random village where we had to get on a shuttle bus to another place where we caught a train toward Athens, which luckily, continued on to Piraeus. Oh, while in that random village, there was an earthquake. That was cool. Love earthquakes.

In Piraeus, we stayed at Anita’s Hotel, and our room was bright pink, with giant pink flowers on the wall, pink shades, bedcovers and stools. Really crazy. We watched this TV show that was pretty fair (CSI kind of style), but at the end the main character’s husband died—for NO reason whatsoever. It was completely unnecessary to the plot, and they hadn’t even developed his character that much (or their relationship), so instead of being sad, it was just startling. Debbie and I just burst out laughing.

Next morning, we took a ferry to SANTORINI! Where we are right now. It’s amazing. The sea just fades into the sky and it’s like a dream. It’s windy and sunny, and the smooth white hosues are sprinkled or grouped throughout the grassy landscape… there are vineyards and orchards and flowers all over the place. The view from Fira of the volcano island in the ocean is spectacular. The locals just farm or run their little businesses with a friendly, relaxed attitude. Santorini is really a very enjoyable place to be, and is lovely.



Deb and I have been sitting on our beds for hours after a hard day of fourwheeling and napping, and she’s reading aloud Confessions of a Shopaholic. It’s delightful. Deb should read books aloud as a career. She’s bloody brilliant. We’re ridiculous.

“The truth is… I’m being stalked. By a man named… Derek Smythe.”


20 May

We were going to finish Confessions, but apparently we were laughing really loud, and the walls are very thin, and at 4:15 this Asian girl finally knocked on our door and said, “can you please lower your voices? I really cannot sleep.” And we felt so bad, and we already felt guilty because that book just does that to you, so we felt awful and went to bed.

This morning, they came in to clean, and I was hanging some laundry, and Deb was reading, so we were both on the balcony, and the door was banging from the wind, so the guy looked at me and made a “I’m going to close this, okay?” face, and I nodded, and then… they finished cleaning, and left. … WITHOUT unlocking the balcony door!!! We thought they were going to come back but they never did!! We were so sad and miserable, knocking on the door, calling out, “help!” and in desperation trying to figure out escape routes, but no ledge was big enough to scoot along, and every distance below threatened a broken leg. It was hopeless. We could even see through the balcony door that they had left the door of our room open. Finally (it felt like an hour later), a large Greek woman, a confused Asian, and another woman were outside—we scrambled—“help! Can someone please come up here and open our door??” The large Greek woman didn’t get it and, annoyingly, ignored us and just kept saying, “telephone, telephone.” We’re like, “if we could freaking get to a telephone we wouldn’t be locked out here, genius.” and desperately “just-come-upstairs-and-open-our-door!!!” (if you want to get the expression right, try saying it within .05 seconds in a slightly maniacal tone). Finally the Asian guy realized and tried to get the woman to help us… holy miscommunication. So the other woman came up and started laughing when she saw us stuck out on the balcony and let us in… oh my gosh. I can’t believe they locked us out there. That little snotface! I’m going to get him.

Okay, “Not the Same” by Ben Folds is …. a great song.

“Coffee, tea, wine—PLEASE!!!” –Poppy

22 May 2009

It’s our last night in Santorini. Yesterday we rode the four-wheeler to Fira and parked it, and then walked down through some old-town-style shopping places toward the old port. We then decided to ride the rest of the way… on donkey. Awesome. Foot travelers would be advised never to use this path. I’ll never forget the man who was clearly disgusted and terrified by donkeys, shoving the poor thing away from its blundering path straight toward him. What a classic expression. The man leading our string of donkeys was portly and silly, with a striped blue and white shirt, and a little beret.

We then boarded a faux-traditional ship, which took us to the volcano island off of Santorini. We hiked to the top (difficult on crumbly volcanic rock), had a look (what a view of Thira!), and came back down to swim in the hot (lukewarm) springs. We had to jump off the boat to swim over to the springs. All in all, quite enjoyable. We returned and took a cable car back up, getting a marvelous view of the other islands and the other side of Fira/Thira with its little white houses clinging to the side of the oceanview cliffs. We ate the (seriously) most amazing gyros ever for lunch. Our room has a little fridge and sink, so we’ve been having a lot of meals here—it’s cheaper that way; although Greece is definitely the cheapest place we’ve stayed so far. 5 nights here = 1 night in Rome (I told you they have big heads), and this place is way nicer (what an understatement).

Today we finally went to the beach! We’ve been along the coast and had all the views, but we finally went to the beach to be at the beach. It was one of the black beaches, and it was amazing. It was all rock, no sand, and it was radiating heat (it’s so windy here that it hasn’t really been warm enough to go to the beach). The water is so clear; it’s unbelievable—clear as a swimming pool—and the water isn’t very cold. It’s hard to get out because the rocks just crumble under you—nothing is packed very tight.Then we laid out and got dry in the sun… ahhh… best feeling in the world. I’ve been reading East of Eden. I love John Steinbeck. I got a good deal of it in, laying out there. Sigh.

I’m dying to watch a movie. Our TV has like 4 Greek stations. Today I listened to a whole MGMT album at an internet café, and some others. I miss my iPod too. Just 5 more days left of our trip. Goodness!


[from church in Athens] –haha they played “Come, Come Ye Saints” so fast, it was crazy. And then after the closing prayer they always play one verse again, so the pianist played the verse again and then ended it with a “duh DUH!” (octaves)… it was so chipper and out of place… haha hilarious.

We were talking about the distance of temples, and the closest one to Athens is in Germany, or Switzerland. Isn’t that crazy? I am amazed at the sacrifices that people make to get to the temple, and it’s only an hour away for me. At least they’re building one in Rome. I love going to church at these little branches. The people are so faithful and friendly, and there is lots of translation, and we get to wear the little devices so we can understand, and we all just sit in the little room, learning together… love it. It’s an amazing relief to see the little plaque “The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints” especially after you’ve been searching for a long time. The branch here was only a couple of minutes from our hostel! And right in the middle of all the Athens sites.

We went up to the Acropolis (short walk from the hostel), and there were just fields of trees in a dry field… olive trees, I think. Kind of felt like California a little bit… Quicksilver area, where I go running sometimes—or those hills behind Blossom Hill, right in the middle of summer when all the grass is dead. Love home. We were trying to spend as little money that day as possible, but we knew it was our only chance to see the Acropolis. When we got to the entrance gate, they told us it would be €12, and that we could get the tickets behind us at the other window. We started to leave, but turned back to ask, “Oh, and where is Mars Hill?” and the lady there said, “it’s down there, but come in here free.” We were like, “huh?” and she said again, “come in free.” We still don’t know why she let us in free—just a Sunday miracle, I think. Spent under €15 that day—only for food. It was incredible to see all those buildings… I mean, it seemed incredibly out of reach to me, and Deb agrees. I never thought I’d be in that part of the world, let alone standing in front of the Parthenon… It was *there* but I couldn’t see myself there, not really. There’s this strange feeling that comes while you’re up there… like you could close your eyes and just see ancient Greece, right in front of you, and on Mars Hill, Paul giving a sermon, on rough rock that is now smooth where so many have walked. There really is quite a remarkable feeling that comes when you walk in such a historical place. And… what beautiful architecture. I am in awe.


27 May 2009

We’re on the Aer Lingus plane to Heathrow, where we’re catching a flight to San Francisco. Our trip is finished! 2 days ago we went from Manchester (there you are, love) to Dublin, and yesterday we visited Cork. We kind of stayed in the city center for most of the day, but then we walked out to a more residential area as well. Ireland is so dang lovely. They have steps up to paths to the houses (I don’t think anyone uses them, though—garages on the other side) that are completely overgrown with baby tears and all kinds of other beautiful ground coverings and flowers.

When we got back from Cork we went and saw Star Trek. We hadn’t seen a movie in so long, and we decided in Santorini that we’d see one as soon as we got back to Dublin. It was great! So we’re headed home now; we’ve been talking a few days now about how great it will be to use hairdryers and curling irons, wear something outside our backpack-wardrobe and actually look cute for the first time in a month. It’ll be nice to be home. We are saving the last Lion for when we fly into San Francisco. Wow. I have a newfound fearlessness in me. I have new muscles and stories to tell.

Laurel Christina Hulme

04 June 2009

Travel Journal Pt. III

More experiences, jokes etc. Budapest to part of Rome

24 Hour Fitness – your membership lasts 24 hours. Have fun for 24 hours! You wont feel great afterward.

Lion cereal = disgusting. “I’m going to donate this [camera cord] to the hostel… and THIS [Lion cereal, full] to the kitchen…” (spilled on the bed, “wake up with Lions stuck to your face… GROSS!”)

Crazy Budapest experience!

Okay the Budapest story is in my email to Mom; it’s a little long to write.

[here it is]

Sorry Mom, this keyboardi s sticky, so I’ll have typos and very few capitals.

Today we were going to budapest, and we tried to find the train, but they were like "no, get on this bus" so we did, and we were like "oh my gosh, i hope they actually take us to budapest...." and it ended up taking an extra hour or so.... and then when we got there, we were like "umm.... how are we going to get back?!" and we asked the bus driver, and he didn't speak annny english, and he kept saying "nien nien" and "i'm not going back to vienna..." and then this crazy taxi driver who REALLY wanted us to take his taxi was like, "there is a strike. no trains going out. there is a strike. you must take bus international station." .... um yeah we were like GET away from us, we're not going to take your taxi... and then this poor asian guy had the same problem, and he was freaking out, "how am i going to get back?! this is last stop of my journey." and he didn't speak very good english either. anyway, so our best option was to take another shuttle bus back at 13.10, which only gave us 1.5 hours to see Budapest... and the asian guy (who, by the way, was TOTALLY josh... literal asian version of josh) kept saying "you know, the other buses wilil cost money, and this one is free, you are taking a risk... just think about it." but I really really wanted to see budapest and it had taken us 4 hours to get there... I was like, we're HERE, I want to see something. And he kept saying, "we should just go have a nice lunch. all that matters is a niiice lunch." I"m telling you, mom, he was josh! totally being calm and trying to persuade us not to argue or take any risks and to just have lunch with him. Haha poor guy. Well, we ended up seeing a few things, but not too much. We saw the hungarian parliament which was really cool, on the danube, but not much else. a few other things in the backstreets of town. budapest was just crazy, in every way... totally sketchy. haha all of the kids looked like hoodlums too! Anyway, we went back to catch the shuttlebus, and a guy by a bus said "vienna" and pointed inside, and thre was a train there! we were like "umm.... okay..." and we asked three more people, so apparently, they got a train there; no more strike? we don't know. it was insane, but we're back in vienna safe and sound. so.... uh cool. Haha. but yeah, only an hour and a half in budapest. looks like i'd better go back someday.


OH MY GOSH I JUST SAW CARLY!!!! That was crazy! Deb and I are just powerwalking to our train that leaves in 3 minutes, down the streets of Vienna, and I hear, “Laurel?!” I’m like, “huh?” and I turn around… “CARLY?!?!” We freaked out, walking as we hugged; she’s so exiteable,; I LOVE it. She was like, “I can’t believe it! I don’t even see you in Rexburg!!!” It was AMAZING. Seriously. I’m still freaking out. I love her and it was so good to see her. I wish I’d had more time. I forgot to tell her about the You’ve Got Mail experience I had yesterday!

We were at the grocery store, and there was a credit card machine right there, but she was like, “cash only…” I was so tempted to say, “ORANGE you going to give us a break by zipping this credit card through the credit card machine??” And Carly’s the one I was going to tell. I totally would have told her if we’d had more time. I was even thinking last night that I needed to write that on her wall or something.


Band name: A Couple of Songs

“Hey, have you heard A Couple of Songs?”

“Um… yes…”

[that’s almost as good as Everybody Else… excellent in conversations…]


13 May

(using Skype)

Mom: “Where are you?”

Deb: “Rimini.”

Mom: “Boleenee?”

Deb: “Ri-mi-ni!”

Mom: “Bomgeenee?”

Mom couldn’t understand what we were saying when we called her, and it was sooo funny. We were saying, “Rimini” and she just kept saying all these crazy names, cause she couldn’t understand us. I was in hysterics (literally), and she could hear me and was like, “oh dear.” Hahaha. I love her.

So we’re in Rimini today. We went to Venice, stayed a day/night and I really enjoyed it. I wouldn’t want to be there very long, but there’s something so amazing and fun about it. Especially the water buses. Beats all! Buses suck, but breezy water buses are really really great. And the little streets are super fun to wander, and the shops are pretty awesome. They have about 5 specialties, and then a million shops selling one or all of those 5 things. Italy has this way… of making you want to buy things… I got this seriously sweet leather bag (messenger style), and we got some amazing things for Karen’s bridal shower… excellent. We are beyond excited to see her reaction when she opens it. We can’t buy very much stuff though cause we don’t have room for it.

So, today I achieved a recent life-goal; I visited San Marino!! My little San Marino!! Wow, it was seriously incredible. It’s like this city on a hill… this fortress-castle city… There are narrow, winding steep roads all the way up to the castle on top, with little restaurants and shops and stuff—I bought some amber (way cheaper than Prague!), and I love it. Wow—the San Marino castle … best castle ever! They let you go wherever you want—nothing is roped off or blocked. We climbed up ladders and stairs, stood on fling-self-offable turrets, and saw an remarkable view from all sides, of San Marino and Eastern Italy. [Remarkable is kind of a dumb word. It shouldn’t mean what it does… all it really means is “worthy of remarks.” But shouldn’t everything I say be worthy of remarks? Hm… there’s something to think about. I’ve been wasting everyone’s time with my unremarkable words.] It was magical.

Let me tell you about Rimini. It’s like Santa Cruz’s sister town. It’s on the beach (we’re a 2 minute walk away), and even has a boardwalk-style setup, semi-cheesy, with each pier decorated… this isn’t the peak season (“female?! English speakers?!”), but it looks like it’s about to start up soon. Other than San Marino, which is 45 min. away, this doesn’t feel like Italy at all. It’s like staying in Santa Cruz, or some cross between SC and Miami.

By the way, Switzerland with Yana and the rest of the family was wonderful. Schaffhausen is one of my favorite places in the world. It has been since the first time I went—it’s definitely become like a second home to me. Hanging out with Yana and Sergio (her boyfriend) was so fun. They’re both hilarious, and she’s so happy. And when Maria and Paulo showed up… I just love my little family. When there’s Russian, Italian, German, English and more just flying across the table within one minute… man those are some of my favorite times. They’re wonderful people.

We weren’t able to get our favorite bread from the Coop—we actually did have it on Sunday, but it was sliced… Boo! So much better in torn-off chunks… Okay, headed to Rome tomorrow. This is the greatest trip of my life.



British guy outside train station: “’Scuse me, do you speak English? …Do you like ignoring people??”


From SUPER ghetto hotel in Rome: They said that they charge for towels, and we got up there, and they were just sitting there, asking to be used. We decided we’d use them, and then fold them back up inconspicuously and put a sign on them that said: “I don’t know what you’re talking about. We didn’t use these towels.” Hahahaaa.

[insert drawing: no whistling on the train]

“My bed looked more appealing to me than the toilet… can you blame me?” –Laurel

“You’re a certified Greek dancer? … how long did that take, two hours?”

That's bull.

First of all, unrelated to bull, do yourself a favor and go listen to "Bizarre Love Triangle" by New Order. That song... is incredible. I feel so happy every time I listen to it. Especially really loud, driving in a stick, accelerating really fast, windows down, in my own world, making people wonder why the heck I'm so happy. They never would know that it's the seule doing of a song. One song. That's success to me. On the flight to Dublin, I watched the British film about Ian Curtis. You know, that is a sad story, and Joy Division certainly had a deal to contribute to the musical world, but look what they came back as! Way to grow out of a tragedy. I love New Order. "Regret" is also meaningful to me.

Now, this IS bull. I'm really angry at Threadless. What is their problem anyway? They used to sell their t-shirts for $12. Now they're $18. Yeah, it's true that they're better quality. But they also charge $6.95 for the cheapest shipping. That's insane. Those shirts are so light. A couple dollars at the most. My $10 "on sale" t-shirt ended up being almost $20. Twice as much? That's ridiculous. But that's not what bugs me the most. I don't even want to submit my product pictures anymore. Here's the newest set of rules that they've laid down for them:

Unfortunately your photograph was not accepted into the Threadless gallery. Your submission may have been declined if 3/4 of the design was not visible, there was nobody wearing the tee shirt, your face wasn't 3/4 visible(above the eyes down), the photo is not right side up, the photo is reversed(a mirror shot), a filter was used, or of a really low quality. You can only submit one gallery photo per design and should submit different photos for each shirt. We cannot post the same picture for multiple designs, even if there are several designs in the photo.

If you're having a cropping issue you need to resize your photo yourself to the requested 380x272pixels

Thank you,

Well, screw you. Thank you for taking away ALL of my artistic liscense. Do you really think, with those rules, I'm going to get any photograph that you like so much you'd actually pay me $15 for it? I guarentee that the pictures have lost qualitiy and artistry because of these ridiculous rules. It's really, really frustrating. Everytime I make sure that I'm fulfilling their requirements, but have finally made an interesting photograph, my shot gets declined and I see that they've made the rules even stricter. If they're really worried about people cheating the system, why don't they just program an automatic checker to see if they've purchased the shirt (and if it's received as a gift, just have them put the order number in, like they make you do anyway for multiple photos)? I'm just tired of people who insist on uncreative work. I'm just trying to make the photographs fit the theme of the shirt. Generally. Whatever. Threadless is just making me mad. They've completely let their popularity go to their heads. Jerks.

02 June 2009

Backpacking Europe Travel Journal: Pt. II

Prague and Salzburg and a bit more of Wien

Tuesday 5 May

Prague here. Oh my goodness, we’ve been here since 6.30 AM, but we weren’t allowed to Czech-in (haha…) until just now, so we’ve been walking all over around town. We haven’t even been to anything major yet, like the Prague castle, but I love it here—it doesn’t matter where you go; the buildings are all beautiful and there are old churches all over the place, and so many lovely old buildings. I like the fact that we end up seeing so much more this way, than what you’re “supposed” to see. We went to this amazing park, and we also saw a tower with naked, faceless babies climbing on it… odd.

I can’t believe we’ve only been out a week. It feels like so long already. Deb’s getting tired of jumping around so we might stay in Austria for a few days and do some day trips from there. Then we go to Yana’s. I can’t wait to see her! Anyway. I love backpacking, because you tend to see more. We’re not driving from airport to hotel and then taking a bus tour of the main points of the city. We’re walking around killing ourselves (excellent.) and eating at little shops, trekking the residential streets with the dog walkers, passing crazy women yelling in [the scariest language probably in the world] at men with giant beards, and then getting completely lost in a beautiful city and stumbling across unexpected wonders. Oh. And that little fruit shop. That’s some of the best fruit I’ve had. Probably cause I haven’t had real food for the last few days.

Man, in Prague, you take your chances with the people… haha. Some of them are super nice, and some are brutally mean. I could skydive here if I wanted to; I just found a brochure about it. That would be cool… skydive in every country or something. OH MY GOSH—How could I forget the most important thing? I FOUND THE WHITE LION. I finally found it! They have them here. They’re so good… Chris might be right, though I hate to admit it. They might actually be better than Kinder Buenos… for sure, actually. The brown one was good, but this one… wow. OK, Prague Castle & old town square!


Prague boy! We were walking in old town square, and there was this guy sitting against a building playing a recorder for money, and Deb and I both looked at each other and said, “… he’s so American…” and burst out laughing. I mean this guy seriously had to be American, we could just tell. This college-age guy probably thought, “huh, that would be a cool experience… playing on the street for money in Prague…” Awesome.

[Insert: “Prague is just full of regrets…” haha]

6 May 2009

Had to catch a 5.57 train this morning. After staying out really late to visit the Praha castle. And that was really great, by the way. We went after 22.00, and it was basically us and some guards (marching in time). I’m sure that place is way busy during the day, but there was almost no one around that late.

Man I’m tired. I just took a nap on the train… a few things about that. I am the worst and most embarrassing train-sleeper ever. Any kind of sitting position is tragic. No, no, I sleep fine. I just make wild and frantic motions, and it’s just a fact that my mouth wont stay closed. Haha. Also, I have the craziest dreams when I fall asleep on trains… I wish I could explain this one—crazy airplane stuff, flying around corners in a chair and hitting walls, having a kid that ended up being my downfall, in a very Footloose, Nicole Kidman & several other actresses dressed in 80s clothes kind of way. Some kind of graduation & I threw pictures everywhere instead of hats. The man on the plane wanted my passport, and the other guy was supposed to be my friend! But he locked me inside the barbed-wire-encased plant and that’s when the actresses started dancing around like 80’s teen idols. Terrified!

Okay see what I mean? My dreams are CRAZY. Okay, Prague is amazing. I LOVE IT. It’s my favorite place so far. I want to stay so badly for a few more days, but we don’t really have time, and we had reservations on our freakin’ early train. Oh! I remember another part of the dream. Jare and I were on a motorcycle zooming around, including on a schoolbus (down the aisle). Anyway… Praha. Someone once said that it has a way of grabbing you and pulling you in… it’s so true and I don’t want to leave. I need to take another trip, for Berlin and Prague and Amsterdam, with at least a week in the first two. I mean, I’m 20. I don’t have to do everything now. [insert smiley face] I love this. [] Headed back to Vienna. We’re going to stay there for 3 nights and do some day trips. Budapest, Salzburg, Innsbruck to Zurich where we see Yana! Can’t wait.

We’re pretty much crashing for the rest of the day at our hostel in Vienna. We’ve been walking a LOT and we’re soooo tired. Mmmm comfy beds. Sleepy.


7 May 2009

Happy International Cow Day! Gutten Kuhtag! We made that up… I think it works… haha.

Deb & Laur talking about how they’re amazing at getting back to where they came from (train stations, streets, etc.) “How…?” “We’re awesome. It’s the only solution.”

(Hiking up Untersberg) Bear feet… bare feet?! [that conversation went on for WAY too long]

Today we decided to go to Salzburg instead of Budapest. We saw many cows on the way and wished them a Happy Kuhtag. Salzburg is so beautiful… we didn’t try to see too much. We did what was most important to us first. We took a cable car up the mountain and it was a perfect day… we could see all of Salzburg and more from that spectacular height. Then we decided to hike the rest of the way up the mountain to the peak where there’s a huge cross. It felt great! I got snow all up my pants and shoes. It was an amazing view up there. This other lady was just sitting and reading… what an awesome place to just chill and read. I love Austria.

Oh, we also visited the tricky fountains… heehee! They were amazing, and the deer head spritzed Deb (the best though is the set of dinner seats that have hidden spouts in them—the host would set them off, and the seat of everyone’s pants would be SOAKED… so they all sat there uncomfortably until he left… hahaha). Headed back to Wien, and we’re going to make dinner @ the hostel—which is amazing by the way. Hostel Ruthensteiner: beautifully airy, light rooms, clean…all great. Favorite so far. Oh, I dropped my camera while it was open, and the lens is totally shot. I’m heartbroken. Completely. I miss my baby already. Budapest tomorrow!

those are the seats that shoot you in the pants!!

01 June 2009

Backpacking Europe: Travel Journal Pt. I

This is my travel journal pretty much as it was written in my little notebook during our time in Europe. It includes our adventures and mishaps and inside jokes. Yay.

Dublin through Vienna (the first time)

(Cal, off to our adventure!)

30 April 2009

We’re in Dublin! Ireland is so beautiful. It’s overcast and cold—the deep-in-your-bones kind of cold. Dublin is a beautiful place—if you just walk back from the main streets, you hit cobblestone roads and pubs on every corner. Last night we just walked around and enjoyed the scene. We’re at our first hostel and it’s so much fun. We instantly became friends with some of the girls in our dorm, and it’s a really enjoyable way to travel. You just find other people who are doing the same thing that you are, and you can do stuff together if you want to, or just recommend things to each other. It’s a fun way to meet people. I want to meet locals in a lot of places if we can, but it’s not necessarily easy, especially in a place like Dublin where the people that live here aren’t super different from the people that visit here. Well, we’ll be going to the coast, and then the old medieval part of town. Leaving tomorrow!

(talking about large people and how they must feel much more comfortable in a roller coaster—they aren’t going anywhere) Michelle in her New Zealand accent: “I wish I had your girth.”

We were sitting in the hall and the guys in the room across from us were having a conversation (one of them complained about the cold weather), and the other said, “You’re not going to get any numbers tonight with that piss-poor attitude.” Hahaha.

1 May 2009

Deb and I are on a ferry leaving from Dublin and arriving in Holyhead. Hopefully we can find a train to London once we get there… a lot of this trip is pretty much hoping things will work out… like catching the ferry, for example. We weren’t exactly sure we would make it. We caught a bus, and hoped we’d get here fast enough. Turns out we did.

So this little girl sitting next to us totally just said my name. Debbie heard it too. She was just burbling incoherently, then it was definitely LAUREL, pronounced correctly. Okay, other funny stuff: when you leave the hostel, you have to push a button to open the door out (and in). So we’re walking back to the hostel, and we pass this huge, really hot team of rugby players walking down the street coming out of our hostel, all dressed in funny costumes and things over their uniforms. Finally, we get in the door, and this one late player, wearing Irish clogs, with an armful of stuff, walks over to the door. He keeps trying to open it without pushing the button, and he can’t figure out why it wont open.... anyway it was pretty hilarious how he couldn’t get it. We finally showed him, and then he had the same problem with the other door… it was so funny because he was already late, plus he was in huge wooden clog shoes, so there was no way he could run to catch up… haha. Anyway, we’re a ways out now in the sea. Lovely and grey.

I don’t really have any trouble with jet lag; I am perfectly awake during the day. I guess sometimes I just have trouble sleeping at night. I wake up around four in the morning, perfectly awake, and just have to sit there until I fall asleep again. We’ve only been out a few days, though. It feels like much longer.


We are in London. Ooh my gosh, what an adventure! This is so great, because if we were doing this with Dad and Mom or something, or just as anything other than backpacking, I might be thinking, “killll me now,” but this is just super fun, and we’re embracing the ruggedness of doing this. “Ruggedness.” Haha. Today we walked around for a good 3.5 hours (with our backpacks) just trying to find our hostel. That’s a long way. But we thoroughly enjoyed it. OH, and our train went through Wales today. That was unexpected! Uhh didn’t realize Holyhead was in Wales. Cool. Beautiful countryside there.

Anyway. We finally found our hostel (Salter Road!! We finally found Salter Road!!! …and for some reason I really want to spell that Psalter… probably cause it’s a real word. Uh…. Sweet.), and some of the girls in our room are from France (Bordeaux). I started talking to them, and it’s really great. I didn’t think that I’d get to use my French on this trip cause we’re not going to France. But this is even better cause it’s the perfect place to actually have a conversation. It’s better than trying to force a conversation out of a local. Haha. They’re all incredibly nice. This is very fun!


So we’ve seen more of London than we ever thought we would (way more than last time), and I actually love London, so I’m glad we got to come here—and we spent most of the time walking the backstreets. It’s a beautiful day here; probably the nicest I’ll ever see the city. K Deb and I are starving! Oh wait—2 funny things. I barked quietly at a pigeon at St. Paul’s Cathedral. Also, these men were walking next to us on a street, and this younger guy was running down the sidewalk in the other direction (pretty fast!), and one of the men from the group jumped out at him, waving his hands wildly, and the kid had to LEAP out of the way! Then all the men started laughing and looked at us and said, “don’t look at us like that, ladies… we’re war heroes! We’re allowed to be mad!” Haha… good times. Or should I say… good Thames

I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, everything is better in a Brit accent.


2 May 2009

Leaving London. So there’s this HUGE group of French teenagers that was staying our hostel, and they were pretty crazy and loud (not related to the girls in our room). We got into the elevator with this Brit guy and he was like, “I think this hostel must specialize in large groups of rowdy French teenagers…” and went off on how obnoxious they were all night… dang it was so funny. Just the way he said it… haha brilliant.

[hot chocolate stain]

“What time does church start?”


“I’m thinking we should leave around… eight.”


“I really hope they sprechen sie Englisch.”

Leaving as: Females

Returning as: Males

(The online ticket purchase gives you the option to choose whether you’ll be returning as the same sex you left as… I thought it was hilarious)

Little kid chirping: “shuhddup shuhddup shuhddup”

“No, YOU shut up.”

Pizza delivery on the train… “how do you do that exactly”

“OKAY…. Meet me on the platform at exactly 3:25…”

Talking about our childhood… one time Dad made me put a bar of soap in my mouth for fighting with him; Deb and I used to plan how we would punish him… (“I’m gonna stick a bar of soap in HIS mouth…”)

4 May 2009

So yesterday was amazing. Deb and I left around 9:30 from the hostel, so we pretty much had two hours to get to church. The address said Bruxelles-Louise, so we knew it had to be in that area. We took the tram to Louise, and when we got there,we were like, “okay… we’re in the right city now; lets look for the street.” We would ask some people «pardonnez-moi, nous cherchons avenue Henri-Jasper…» No one knew about it. We must have asked 20 people (after the 1st hour, at least). Somehow we both knew that the Lord would help us find it (we were only planning on going to sacrament meeting). We had our packs on of course, and we just started walking. “Lets turn left here.” “Definitely.” “Left or right?” *thinking* “Follow that man!” “Lets ask in that building.” (that building ended up being the police station, and they pointed us in the “right direction.” We saw a young couple dressed in church clothes and they were asking someone where the street was. We were like “hey! We’re looking for that too!” We wandered around for another good hour with them, and finally ended up at a hôtel, which had a map that actually included our street (pas comme tous les autres…) And so, nous avons arrivées a l’église, 10 minutes avant the sacrament meeting started. I have never felt so happy and blessed to be at church. You know, Deb and I had no idea where we were going, what to expect, or who to ask for help… we just went with it and knew that we would find it in time. We didn’t even think or prepare for any other possible scenario.

I really want to live in Bruxelles at some point in my life. I love it there, and I feel completely comfortable with my French there (I mean, it could use work too, though, as always). It is a beautiful place. Okay, train station… the lady at the info booth was so dang bratty. It was almost comical. She was talking to the lady in line in front of us and said, “well why did you miss your train??” And Debbie and I were already late… what the heck?! What kind of irrelevant question is that? It was pretty ridiculous. So, we couldn’t get a train to Berlin, so we decided to skip out and go to Vienna earlier than we were going to. I wanted to go so badly, but I’ll go another time. We went on the night train (1 heure en retard…), after a crazed search for White Lions (Chris wont ever know how much he defined this trip for us)—we ate 2 normal Lions, and searched every vending machine in Brussels and Frankfurt. Futile. Maybe eastern Europe will have them… I can only hope. ATTENTION! Un LION dans le Metro!!! ß ce n’est pas vrai. So we’re in Austria-Vienna, at Starbucks. Rilo Kiley played earlier (spellcheck accurately changed its language to French again, and now it’s saying that every English word is incorrectly spelled. Excellent.), and now it’s Feist. I so have missed music. So this is nice. I want to listen to The Reminder in full now. Headed to Prague tonight. Got our own private sleeper train [insert mwahaha face here], because it's all they had left. There will be dancing involved. See music video. Alright, we’re going to head to some remote part of Vienna to find some cute houses and other fun stuff. More aimless wandering to commence.


“So… Some thoughts on life. Luxury = showering on a train. Danger = shaving on a train.” -Deb