eleven things

eleven things

Marcella tagged me in her 11 things post, so here I go!

There are five rules:

1. Post these rules.
2. Post a photo of yourself and 11 random things.
3. Answer the questions set for you in the original post.
4. Create 11 new questions and tag people to answer them.
5. Go to their blog/twitter and tell them you’ve tagged them.

My most recent instagram self-portrait! I was trying to show off the comb in my hair; It was my grandmother's!

11 Random Things

1. When I was a child, there were a few career ideas I loftily considered. I thought about being a veterinarian because “I love animals!”, I thought about being an architect because I built some crazy houses with my legos and my lincoln logs, and I wanted to be an astronaut because I really really really wanted to see space with my own eyes (I still do). However, one career goal I have had has been steadfast, and I am SO BLESSED with always knowing what I wanted to do. I think one of the toughest things about our modern society is figuring out just what it is you want to do with your life! I’ve been waiting for a moment to share this with my blog followers, so here it is (see page 26)!

Pages 25 & 26 of the auto-biography I wrote in second grade. I think I should scan this in its entirety and share it. It is too funny!

2. I also always knew I wanted to be a mother (see page 25 above. No, I no longer want ten children! And, why yes, I do think it is nice to “have a man around”, lol). You know how some people go through a phase where they say they don’t want kids and then change their minds? (And some people just don’t want kids, and that’s fine :] ) I just always knew I wanted children. I was looking forward to it so much I figured I’d also love being pregnant, and I didn’t. It wasn’t horrible (translation: I had a clean bill of health, save slight pregnancy anemia), but I was miserable the last  three months. To this day when I think about getting pregnant again all I can really think of is hating how I couldn’t sit down and cross my legs, I couldn’t hop out of bed, I couldn’t wear my high-waisted skirts, I couldn’t breathe, and being kicked in the cervix from the inside. But we want more children, so here’s to hoping I enjoy it more next time! (Please?!)

3. Getting back to that goal I had about being an astronaut… I really love science. I love discovery, and the transformation your understanding of the natural world undergoes when learning about science. It is truly amazing! I had a very tough time trying to decide what to do with my life because of this love. I couldn’t figure out how to marry this passion with my passion for art. In high school, my physics, anatomy, biology, and chemistry teachers all encouraged me to utilize my “unique talents”. I toyed around with being an anatomical illustrator, but that is neither innovative or creative; it just requires an intense technical understanding of illustration, anatomy, rendering, and infographics! A little part of me yearns to do research and make discoveries to this day. :)

4. I am totally one of those assholes that HATES, HATES!!! reality television. I cannot watch it. If it is on in the same room as me, I have to go into another room, because I can’t hold back my annoying scoffing or my eye rolls or my intense skepticism, and I become a huge sourpuss. For the most part, I think most of these people set HORRIBLE examples for everyone else (not just children) and we “glorify” them on television. Many people watch to make fun of them, but many others could see it as a way to carve their own path into fame. I know I am really in the minority here, because a lot of people _love_ to hate reality television; but I just hate it. And I don’t hate many things. It’s unfortunate, because it often separates me from my family,  seeing as my mom and my sisters LOVE it. (My brother has more of a penchant for the survival shows, and my dad is with me “it’s all crap!”. We are boring and watch documentaries and how it’s made together.) I’ve been putting up fits and going to my room since I was in high school and they insisted on watching the bachelor (the bachelor bothers me on a fundamental level). And I still do it if I go over there and they are watching some dumb housewives show. Why invite me over and then insist on watching this shit? (The only show I have ever been able to tolerate is Project Runway (fashion!), but even then I typically want to have it on mute. The ridiculous antics and music, ugh. Oh, and I do watch Hoarders to inspire me to polish my cupboards with a toothbrush! And I used to love Trading Spaces. I think that about covers it). *For the record, I don’t judge on people who like reality television, or hate that they like it. I  think it’s rather silly to like it, but usually people who like it also think it is silly to enjoy it. Plus, isn’t my reaction to it equally silly?!*

5. Considering the above, you may not  be surprised to learn we don’t have a cable subscription. Tyler and I have never had it in our adult lives. We don’t really seem to mind too much. Sometimes I feel like I miss the morning news because they are so “friendly” and it reminds me of the mornings when I was able to play hooky or stayed home sick with my mom growing up. But mostly we just don’t want an extra bill for something we don’t really feel we need. That’s not to say we don’t enjoy Netflix! I love Netflix because I don’t have to be subjected to ridiculous commercials, and I can watch an entire season of a show at my leisure. I credit Netflix for exposing me to the many great shows that are actually out there! I do agree with Liz Lemon “Well, I happen to think we are in a new golden age of scripted television!”.

6. I’ve never been to New York. What is up with that?! I’ve never even been to the East Coast. In fact, I am distinctly under-traveled. I am very bothered by this! Besides living in California, I’ve only been to 6 other states: Nevada, Texas, Arizona, Idaho, Hawaii and Oklahoma (when I was 3), and most of these travels were to visit friends or family. But I have been to Hong Kong three times! They were business  trips though. This mama needs to travel! Does Tijuana for 2 hours when I was six years old count?

7. My parents have known each other since my dad was 16 and my mom was 11. My mom went to my dad’s first wedding! After my dad divorced his first wife, he ran into my mother again, and thought “hey, she grew up!”. They had a short engagement and just celebrated 30 yrs together.

8. I went to the same jr. high as my parents and all of my blood-related aunts and uncles (7 of them).  My mother went to elementary school in Venice and Santa Monica, and then went to Santa Monica high, but they were in the valley just long enough for her to go to jr. high here! When I started there, her class picture was still up! And some teachers knew me by my last name. Also, I am not mistakenly calling it a jr. high (grades 7-9), because it was not middle school when I went there. In fact, I was in the first 8th grade graduating class!

9. Tyler and I were born in the same hospital. Our mothers were both born in Santa Monica, exactly 2 months apart. We often wonder if our mothers ever crossed paths, and how often we might have crossed paths.

10. I don’t like scary movies, and it kinda sucks. I know I am missing out on fun, but I just can’t get into it. It’s the same way with spicy food! My mouth is just set on FIRE! And I can’t taste anything, and my eyes start to water and I choke. But people love it and I want to find out why!

11. When I watch movies that have a sappy love story, I’m always reminded of my own love story. This is one way I knew Tyler and I were “it”. To use the quintessential romantic movie example, when I first saw the Notebook, I imagined a situation like that  between myself and some fantasy man, even though I was in a relationship at the time. When I saw it again after beginning a romantic relationship with Tyler, I thought, “OH! That is so something Tyler would say”. I knew him for 3 years before giving him a chance. He would always say “I don’t want to date other girls. It would betray what I feel for you and be unfair to them. I know what I want, I want you”. Later he said to me “I’m in this for the long haul; marriage, kids, everything.” He said he knew he was going to marry me 2 months after he met me. He just looked at me as I was hooking up my Game Cube (we met at work, as video game testers, remember?) and thought “I don’t know how, but you’re going to marry that girl!”. /melting

11 Questions from Marcella

1. What’s your favorite color?
Oh, girl! This question is hard to answer. I’d prefer to answer in the idea of color groups!  I really enjoy aquas, pinks and golds, and I also really enjoy navy, teal, and yellows, and I also am really loving red-purples with rusty oranges and saffrons, with pops of fuchia.
tldr: Teal/aqua/turq. “blue-green”.

2. Who’s your favorite celebrity and why?
Natalie Portman. She’s smart, sexy and socially conscientious. And a new mom! (Honorable mentions: Zooey D, JGL & Ryan Gosling)

3. What’s your favorite kids clothing brand?
I’ll split this up into 3 categories; $, $$,  and $$$
$ My favorite brand for dirt cheap but adorable clothes is old navy (which you probably could guess from Laelia’s outfits). They typically have some great basics with just the right details and you can score items from their clearance rack for $4! I even found a pair of shoes once for 98¢! (honorable mention: Target)
$$ My favorite moderately priced brand is probably Zara kids. I haven’t actually bought from there yet, but I love everything they make! It’s probably a little weak to say they are my favorite since I have yet to see anything in person, but I am planning on buying soon. I also love crewcuts (it’s in between $$ and $$$, isn’t it?), and I love half of janie and jack, but I sometimes feel like the other half is too sweet.
$$$ My favorite expensive brand (translation: I ogle but will probably never buy) is Little Marc Jacobs.

4. What are your top 3 favorite blogs?
I’ve been thinking about how to answer this, as there are so many!  So I’ll just tell you about the blogs I have loved for at least 5 years! The first blog I ever fell in love with was probably decor8. Then, Anna Maria Horner’s blog. Then Fashionologie and The Sartorialist! Okay, so 4. Design blogs are my first blog love! :)

5. What’s one childhood memory that you’ll always remember?
I think I’ll always remember the moment I came home from school and saw my baby sister in our house for the first time. I was in first grade. She was lying in a play pen and I think my mother was folding laundry. Oh! And the ’87 earthquake (I was eating Cheerios, and no one had explained earthquakes to me yet), and the ’94 earthquake.

6. If you could change anything about yourself, what would it be?
Physically: I used to want to change my eye color, as I am the only one of my siblings with brown eyes and I thought they are “so boring”, but my husband loves them, and part of me feels like Laelia’s intense eye color has sapped my desire from wanting a different eye color (Tyler has brown eyes too; Lae gets her color from both our mother’s side). If I could change anything I would change my upper lip and my belly. My upper lip is non-existent! I’ve never liked my belly, and pregnancy has riddled me with stretch marks and wrinkled skin. I suppose it’s not so bad because I didn’t like it already, but I do wish I had taken ONE photo of me in a bikini before I got pregnant. However, I do like my smile and Laelia grew in my belly, so I feel have to appreciate the things I would change. I’m big on accepting your body for what it is, and loving it. My favorite body part(s) are my wrists! Silly, I know.
Socially: I would change my short temper. I only do this with a select few, and it is the people I am closest with (i.e. my husband, my mother). I have an ocean of patience with others, and I would never lose my temper with most people. Oddly enough, I don’t lose my temper very often with Laelia (at least so far… I’m sure when she learns to “talk back” I’m in for it). I think parenting is teaching me a lot about how to help another person through a trial, because losing your temper with a baby doesn’t really get you anywhere… The problem is the worst with my husband, because we have very different approaches on how to handle conflict, so we are constantly “working on it” with each other. I think we are making progress though! (I think a lot of our conflict comes from my expressive passion about things–think of the Italian stereotype… or have you seen that episode of Modern Family where Gloria is chatting with her mom on the phone and Jay thinks they are fighting? Only, they weren’t fighting. They were just chatting. Yeah, it’s kinda like that. ~.^)
Mentally: I’d like to change my bad habit of getting into philosophical debates with hypothetical people in my head… If I don’t stop, I fear it will send me to an early grave.

7. Whats your favorite vacation spot?
What’s a vacation?! It’s sad, we don’t go on vacations. It is on my list of goals! My dream vacation would be to Europe or Tokyo, but I’d settle for Santa Barbara at this point.

8. Are you happy?

“When I was 5 years old, my mom told me that happiness was the key to life. When I went to school, they asked me what I wanted to be when I grew up. I wrote down “happy”. They told me I didn’t understand the assignment. I told them they didn’t understand life.” – John Lennon

I love this question!  I think a lot of other people overlook this idea, because they assume someone’s happiness is based on things like the amount of money in their bank account or their relationship status. I believe in Gross National Happiness!

To answer the question though, yes, I am very happy. It is really nice to say that, because after the dazey happiness of my childhood, I struggled with depression for a long time. It wasn’t clinical, and my coping skill was to just focus on my future to get through the present. Things got a little better after college when I decided to force myself to have a little introspective time and I basically did nothing but work and work out for 3 months. I didn’t do much of anything on the social level, but I came out of it 30lbs lighter and in a new career path. I essentially tapped into the latent self-confidence that I lost somewhere in my adolescence. Two and a half years later I realized that I was going to marry Tyler (so we finally started dating! HA!), and since then I have had a deep level of satisfaction that has never wavered despite the tough times we have gone through. :) I remind him quite often that I am a happy woman and I am excited to get up in the morning (even though I love to sleep in).

9. If you had a chance to do whatever you wanted for one day, WHAT would you do?
This is a fun idea; I would have to start out at some boutique hotel near the ocean where I would have a brunch that consisted of mimosas and lemon ricotta pancakes. Yum. Oh, and lots of coffee. I think I would just drink champagne and coffee all day, actually. Then, I’d get my nails done and probably go shopping for a little while, but the kind of shopping where it is not a chore–you know what I mean? I don’t want to have to satisfy a list, I want to relax! Hopefully I’d find something that really makes me excited and I would use often and it would remind me of the day I got to do whatever I wanted. Then I’d head off to an art museum and be inspired, and take some awesome photos on my iPhone. I’d lunch at the museum’s cafe, on the patio. Then, I’d head over to a restaurant on the water for drinks and interesting appetizers, and a gathering of friends and a beautiful sunset. In the evening, we’d see a concert at a venue like the Hollywood Bowl or the Disney Concert Hall, and it would be moving whatever the musical genre would be (I can’t choose between classical, a video game concert, or my favorite indie band right now — I’m such a nerd!). Then we’d get ice cream and probably go out dancing; or, if we were too tired to go out dancing, we’d head back to our place and play board games and have good conversation until the wee hours of the morning (don’t forget the constant champagne and coffee!).

10. Favorite TV show?
Probably The Office. I love how subtle the humor is and how every time I re-watch it I notice something new. My dad hates this show because he says he doesn’t understand “office humor”, and I have a friend who says he doesn’t like it because of how awkward it can be. I totally understand that point; I have a tough time watching the first season or the episode “Scots Tots” without cringing! Normally, I don’t like uncomfortable humor, but I feel like the more “normal” characters help to offset the awkwardness by providing the reaction you would have onscreen.
(Honorable mentions: 30Rock, Arrested Development, Battlestar Galactica, the Simpsons)

11. What kind of car do you drive?
A navy blue Scion XB. It’s actually my second one. I went over what happened to my first one here already, but here’s the short version: It was silver, and I bought it in 2005 and drove it off the lot with one mile on it. It was heaven after my previously disastrous car experiences (exploding engines and brakes going out on the freeway, amongst other things). We were like best friends, driving 80 miles a day, five days a week, for over 3 years! She got beat up too; one person made a left hand turn from the right hand lane INTO my car at the Oaks mall. Someone in a lifted trucked backed into her at my parents house. Another person did a hit and run on Rose and Pacific in Venice (where Tyler’s old apartment is). Still, she carried on… that is, until someone rear-ended us at a red light on Sepulveda. :( I signed her over to the insurance company the day we got the letter from Toyota saying that I finally owned her. She was all mine for a day! We just bought another one with the insurance money, since it was easy and we enjoyed not having a car payment. But it’s not the same. :(

My Questions for the @tagged!

1) What did you want to be when you “grow up” and why?
2) Where were your parents born?
3) If you could dress however you wanted without regards to practicality, cost, or ridicule, how would you dress?
4) Where was your first kiss?
5) What was your first car?
6) How did you meet your significant other?
7) Do you have an opinion on what order the Star Wars trilogies should be introduced to your children? If so, what order and why? (Tyler and I need other people’s thoughts on this one. ~.^)
8) What style(s) do you think best describe you?
9) What is your favorite comfort food?
10) When you look at the moon, do you see it as a 3 dimensional object, or a flat disc? (sorry if this is a weird question, but it’s something I like to ask people. :) )
11) What is something that you have always wanted to do, but haven’t gotten a chance to do yet?

… And tag, you’re it! Emily, Amber, Shannon, Jess, Don, Melissa

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One Response to eleven things

  1. Emily says:

    I’ve never been to NYC either but this will that will change. Do you wanna come to BlogHer with me?! Also, your day off sounds AMAZING. I could drink champagne all day too…so perfect. I love your scarf, I love that you don’t have cable {i’ve been wanting to cut the cord for a while}…I love all of this! <3

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Welcome to Visual Vocabularie! My name is Jesyka, and I am a designer, artist, mom to Laelia and Luca, wife to software engineer and UX designer Tyler, coffee lover, and all around enthused person. This is my blog; here I share my personal projects, whether it's a furniture makeover, a new painting, a birthday party, an invitation I designed, or a favorite outfit for my little. You’ll also catch a glimpse into our family life in Los Angeles.

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