Saturday, October 25, 2008

Lending A Hand

Today I woke up and ran down to the ARCH (Austin Resorce Center for the Homeless) orientation. After my experience with the blind homeless man last Saturday (see my "ok, lesson learned" entry below) I decided that it is no longer enough for me to donate money & toiletries, I actually need to volunteer my time. I have tried to volunteer with other organizations like Food Not Bombs in the past, but the Austin chapter never returned my emails. So the ARCH it is.
Orientation was very interesting & I learned a lot. For instance, there are over 6,000 homeless people in the city of Austin. The ARCH is a mens facility at night but during the day both men & women come in to do their laundry, shower, get medical attention, check their email, get phone messages, & even make art. Yes - they have an art studio upstairs! The city provides all the supplies & they have one art show every year in which all the proceeds go to the artist themselves. I was told that many homeless people live off of that money all year long. I got a tour of the entire building & it's really inspiring to see all the things they do to help these people. The building itself is entirely self sustained, they filter their own rain water, generate all their electricity through solar paneling, & are about to start growing their own veggies & herbs on a patio near the roof. I give them a big high 5 for all their efforts. It's a daunting task, but they are doing their best & need more volunteers! They don't ask for a huge commitment, just whatever you can do. If you would like to volunteer your time please contact Front Steps & go through orientation like I did today. If you are busy busy busy then you could donate blankets (it's getting cooler) or things like jackets, tampons, soap, toilet paper, sunscreen, & disposable razors. If you are reading this & you do not live in Austin I urge you to get online & find & organization in your city to lend a hand to.

There was a quote by Ralph Waldo Emerson in the paper work they gave me today, it read "It is one of the most beautiful compensations of life: that no man can sincerely try to help another without helping himself."

That kinda made my day.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Ok, lesson learned

If you go too long without blogging there is just no real way to catch up on all the goings on that life has to offer. I've been a negligent blogger because I was crazy busy preparing for Maker Faire! I churned out a few new t-shirt designs, made more hoodies for the fall & winter seasons, got some tote bags printed up (!!!), & made TONS of jewelry! Almost 200 pieces of hand crafted accessories made by yours truly ;)
Not all of them are up in the shop, but they will be soon. Cross my heart and all that jazz. My Mom came into town for the faire (see above ^ ) - she was my helper, Thanks Mom! We butted heads a few times like moms & daughters do, but mostly we just had fun. Maker was really inspiring! What made my favorite list? Well, definitely Bazaar Bizarre - so many crafty people in a small space! Then there was the Austin Bike Zoo! Talk about a bike gang! They had bikes outfitted to look like rattle snakes, butterfly's, & boats! There were a lot of cool tandem bikes & SUPER tall bikes that looked a bit scary to me, but fun none the less! The art cars were effing rad too! I saw the Yarn Car, but didn't get to ask him how you wash it... next time I guess. There were so many things, and I didn't get to see enough of it due to working my booth. The sacrifices you have to make for craft. I did get to snap a few shots of the things that were in close proximity to my booth & did a little hula hooping next to the Mouse Trap (I think Austin got a little video of me - I'll see if I can post it)! SO Fun! The fair was really inspiring & the people watching was amazing! Below are some pics of shoppers & a few of my favorite booths in the Bazaar Bizarre. I had intended to do most of my x-mas shopping here. BUT on Saturday night after the faire Mom & I went to get some grub from Whole Foods & then a beer @ The Tiniest Bar in Texas to get our relax on... We got our food to go & ate in the parking lot outside the bar. While we were eating I heard a lot of honking towards the intersection. I look over & there is a blind homeless man trying to cross the street! People are honking & swerving around him! I jump out of the car & get him out of the street. Long story short he was lost & no one would tell him where he was! I got him a cab back to the ARCH & gave him some money for food. Once I was back to the car I was so distraught & heart broken that I failed to see the "do not park" sign in the parking lot... So I got towed, with ALL of my merchandise in the back of my car! As if this wasn't bad enough, it cost $200 to get my car out of tow!
So - my shopping plans were ruined. I did collect a lot of cards from the bazaar for future online shopping though... AND I was able to help a man who is truly at society's mercy. Getting the car out of tow was very Adventure in Baby Sitting, minus the Mighty Thor. We got super lost in the middle of nowhere, there were drunk dudes starting fights, an angry mob, you know - all the things you don't want to deal with after a 13 hour day. Despite this unfortunate incident it was a really fun & inspiring weekend! Thanks Maker Faire!

above: two happy customers wearing their pink cupcake earrings/ Bossa Nova Baby's booth / awesome MC shopper with rad mohawk!/ crocheted plastic bag purses by Belle and Burger's booth/ Naughty Secretary Club's Booth/ my awesome Baz Biz neighbors Nerd Bomber!

*oh and BIG hugs to my Mom for helping out & buying me a BIG green hula hoop (seen above) as an early birthday gift! Also, High 5's to Austin & Todd for helping us load in & out of the faire! You guys ROCK*

Saturday, October 11, 2008

One foot in the past

I always get a little nostalgic around October. The year is wrapping up, there's a birthday in my near future... it's a good time to reflect & take stock. All that cheesy deep stuff. So I asked myself this morning:

"what was I doing a year ago today?"

Well - lucky me! I was at the Texas State Fair! The greatest place on earth! I love the rides, the lights, the tiniest horse in the world! Where else can you find fried coke-a-cola, bumper cars, & two headed snakes? We ate so many fried things & took so many polaroid pictures!
I took a lot of polaroids last year. As we all know - polaroid has stopped production of their instant film. You can still find it (Target & Walgreen's carry it) but once it's gone - it's gone. Better put that at the top of my birthday wish list! I guess we can thank all of our point & shoot digital camera's. There is a group by the name of "Save Polaroid". You can only submit one picture. It must be a polaroid, you must be in the picture some where, & they ask that you include a little blurb on why you believe instant film should be kept alive. Wanna see my entry? Because I wanna see yours! Please post your pictures & send me a link.

Saturday, October 4, 2008

*Heart = Broken*

That's right folks, I went from really excited to heartbroken in the matter of a few hours. I just learned that The Trucks have broken up. I never even got a chance to see them play! No fair! If this were a disney movie & I lived in the pacific northwest I would cry a little tear on their shoulders to bring them back to life. Damn this reality! There are rumors of a new EP to be released as a special "see ya!" surprise. So if you are a fan like me, keep your ear to the ground for it's arrival. And if you (unlike me) live in the pacific north west you MUST go see one of their farewell shows.

10/11/2008 Seattle WA Chop Suey
11/7/2008 Portland OR Wonder Ballroom
11/8/2008 Bellingham WA Nighlight


This is very sad news, but we'll have to respect their wishes & keep on dancing...

& I wouldn't fair of me to not include this hilarious little ditty that is constantly stuck in my head: Pervs in the Bushes

Friday, October 3, 2008

It's official. I am EXCITED!

Halloween is almost here! Hip Hip Hooray! I can hardly contain myself! Austin is actually going to be in town this year! Our first Halloween together in 2 years! I'm going to Monster Mash my brains out.
As soon as Bazaar Bizarre has come and gone I am going to spend every waking moment on my costume. Me and two other ladies have a group thang going on. I'm not going to spill the beans, but I'll drop a few hints.

* It's VERY 80's
* There will be some incredibly BIG hair involved!
* Truly outrageous behavior!

... hope I didn't give it away!