Tuesday, March 31, 2015

Brooklyn Bridge

It's been awhile, but here is a scrapbook page from my New York scrapbook.  This page is from a walk my friend Holly and I took across the Brooklyn Bridge.

I used Thickers to do the title for this page, and I used the "B" as the anchor for both words.

Here is a photo of Holly being sassy as we cross the bridge.  I was a beautiful day, with a great blue sky.  I used a double-sided sheet that had blue in the flowers to match the sky.

When you open the page you find more photos, a tag, and a map of Manhattan.

I liked the way the lines for the bridge crossed each other, so I took this photo.  I used a paper with blue, green, and red circles as a matte because I thought the colors went well with the flower paper.

The journalling tag is blue as well, and has flowers, tying in these two elements.  (Although, I really should journal on this tag!)

From my many trips to NYC, I have lots of maps, so I used part of a Manhattan map where you could see the Brooklyn Bridge as part of the background.

Finally, a picture of me and Holly.  The matte is a teal that corresponds nicely (I think) with the blues.

I like the bold colors on this layout, and the element of the flap, which adds a little fun to the page, I think.  :)

Monday, March 30, 2015

Staying Warm this Winter

This winter wasn't as bad as last winter, but there was still a spell when it was COLD!  Last winter, Nox had a little blanket that was supposed to be a baby blanket that Karen donated to Nox.  But since Nox is 3-4 times bigger than that cute little puppy he was last year, that blanket doesn't cover very much.  We have a lot of throw fleeces and throw blankets, so I donated one to Nox:

Because we actually have more than one red fleece blanket in the house, I wrote his name on this one so we wouldn't get confused.  (I'm going to try to stitch his name on, since I'm not sure if the magic marker will wash out when I wash the blanket.)  Anyway, the blanket helped to keep him warm, and when Mark and I wrapped up in our blankies on the couch, Nox also got to get wrapped up in his blanket.  :)

Tuesday, March 03, 2015

If Nox had a Mustache...

A couple of weeks ago we were hanging out with Mark's high school friend, Heather, and her family, and we all played a board game involving mustaches.  We decided this was the one that Nox would have, if he could grow one:

Monday, February 02, 2015

Snowpocalyse 2015!

So, I wasn't meaning to, but I've been on a little hiatus from blogging, but I'll try to get back into it now.  In honor of the February 1, 2015 Snowpocalypse, here is a cute video of Nox helping Mark shovel the sidewalk:


Tuesday, November 25, 2014

Diversity in Higher Ed Revisited

The Society for Advancement of Hispanics/Chicanos and Native Americans in Science (SACNAS) has a vested interested in fostering the success of Hispanic/Chicano and Native American scientists—from college students to professionals—to attain advanced degrees, careers, and positions of leadership in science.  In an interesting article about the Fisher v. University of Texas, two things are discussed: 1) how diversity is recognized as important and impactful for making scientific and technological advances, and 2) politics can shape or harm education through the legistature and judicial branches.

In the first topic, it was discussed how UT had made a blanket 10% rule (the top 10% of each graduating senior class automatically was granted admission).  Because of a some racial/economic segregation among school districts, the 10% rule did yield more diversity (275 African-Americans and 1,024 Hispanics in an incoming class).  However, UT additionally conducted holistic review of students, which means other--and what might be considered nontraditional (or not white-centric)--forms of merit, besides test scores, were given more importance.  According to the article, the enrolling class (of a similar size) saw 335 African-American students and 1,228 Hispanic students.  These numbers may be closer to the actual racial and ethnic demographics in Texas: according to Wikipedia, as of the 2010 U.S. Census, the racial distribution in Texas was as follows: 70.4% of the population of Texas was White American; 11.8% African American; 3.8%, Asian American; 0.7%, American Indian; 0.1%, native Hawaiian or Pacific islander only; 10.5% of the population were of some other race only; and 2.7% were of two or more races. Hispanics (of any race) were 37.6% of the population of the state, while Non-Hispanic Whites composed 45.3%.

In the second topic, the point is made that if URMs want to make sure their voice is heard in the political system (besides the obvious "go out and vote" idea), they should try to get advanced degrees, as that will help them get appointed to positions that will affect policy.  I thought this was an interesting point to make, because, as noted by Professor Margaret Montoya (re: affirmative action), “When students of color are admitted, we greatly enhance scholarship outcomes and new ways of teaching happen. Consideration of race allowed debate and discussion to enter the classroom. It benefits all society. To discourage diversity is a waste of human capital at the macro level, because we are wasting human capacity.”  So not only does diversity enhance and drive science and technology forward, but it could also impact and drive the policies and laws that we as citizens live by.

To see information about 2010 census demographics (showing white people to still be the majority at 72%), check out this Wikipedia article.

Sunday, November 16, 2014


In preparation for a scrap weekend I'm going to next weekend, I thought I'd take a peek at some recent work.  So here is another page from my New York scrapbook:

I cut circles out of some bright colored paper to offset the grayness of the photos, and used that paper for journaling.

I also used a corner rounder on all the photos to tie into the round elements.

I used a piece of decorative tape to help break up the pictures.

The decorative tape also helps let the bottom photo stand on it's own.  It's a photo of a sculpture I really liked, and the physical break helps to highlight the photo.

I also used some silver bling on the pink journalling circle to further draw the eye to this section of the page.

Sunday, October 05, 2014

A Tree Fell in Our Backyard!

In September there was a horrendous, windy storm, during which part of one of our trees in our backyard fell!  Luckily, the large tree branch (in the photo below) didn't damage our fence.  The branch was big enough to be it's own tree, and spanned about 2/3 of our backyard (look how small Nox is in comparison!).

My parents came over to help cut up the tree and clean up.  Murphy and Nox had so much fun playing in the tree while we were working on the clean-up (Murphy is here laying down in the tree).

Here's a photo of how lucky we were that the tree didn't actually fall onto the fence.  It was quite difficult to get the branch down without damaging the fence.

Here's Murphy in the tree.

Here's the beginning of the stack of firewood.

The branch (trunk?) was pretty large, and the age lines were pretty cool.

Here's a photo of my dad working on cutting up the main part of the branch for firewood.

Here is the increasing stack of firewood:

When the brush was getting thin and the dogs couldn't hide in the tree anymore, the dogs enjoyed chasing and chewing on all sorts of branches:

Here are the dogs romping around the yard and amid the piles of brush:

When the main branch / tree was cut up and we were working on cleaning up the brush.  It took awhile to clean up the brush...

But finally we got all the brush piles cleared, and I was finally able to mow the lawn, after about a month!

Here's the final stack of firewood:

It's quite a bit of wood!

And here is the stack of brush that we put out on the street for the October brush pick up.  The stack is taller than our mailbox and the width of the pile goes from the mailbox to our property line!