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things that make me happy

September 26, 2014


Easy pork tacos for dinner.


A happy, tired, and dirty puppy after a morning hike.


My Trader Joe’s weakness…every time.


Our upcoming anniversary trip to Portland…so excited! (P.S. Send suggestions my way please!)

-wonderland sam

working on my fitness

September 25, 2014


photo from last summer when I was more consistent with exercising…

Oh, exercise. The eternal struggle. I have really fallen off the bandwagon with exercising lately. Partly due to laziness and partly because my body is literally falling apart. I can’t currently run on my knee, and I’m still suffering through some back/shoulder problems, but I’m tired of letting that stop me. I’m really motivated to find a fitness routine that I can actually stick to most days of the week.

I no longer have a gym membership, and other exercise clubs are pretty pricey. For me, the key is to have a lot of variation in my exercise routines. So I’m going to try the at home route – where I can do it at any time of day and hopefully try a bunch of different videos. Now that the weather is cooling off a bit, it’s completely plausible for me to workout inside my not airconditioned apartment.

I did a couple of the Just Dance 4 (Xbox Kinect) “Just Sweat” workouts, but I wasn’t impressed. Today I tried this online ballet barre workout and thought it was great – it was the right length, low impact for my knee, and I felt all of my muscles working hard. I took a few barre classes last year, but I didn’t feel like they were difficult enough. This one was…but also doable. I’m also hoping it will help with my posture (back issues) and my flexibility (those splits I’m determined to get back this year).

If you have any suggestions on some online workout videos to do, I’d love to hear them!

-wonderland sam

Project Life

September 24, 2014


I’m about finished with this past year’s Project Life album. I just need to finish some journaling and order Instagram prints (by the way – what is a good app to print these directly from your Instagram feed and not from your phone gallery?). As I’m sure I’ve said before, I love printing photos and not just keeping them hidden away on my hard drive. My apartment is a testament to that as I have photos on every open wall and shelf space we have.

The past two years I’ve documented with Project Life and have enjoyed it. My qualm with it is not having enough space to include as many photos as I would like. You’re also limited with the pocket page designs (I only use 2 designs – one that allows me to use horizontal photos and one that allows me to use vertical). Because traditional scrapbooking is not something I want to get back into, and because regular photo albums don’t lend to any creativity, I will probably stick with this system. I just have to learn to not print every single photo and get creative with how they are organized in the pocket pages. Anyone else having these troubles?

Anyway, here are some random page spreads from my album this year. I made some effort not to be as photo heavy as my last since I do like how the cards break up the space, but I also wanted to limit the number of pages I used.









-wonderland sam

DIY Pennant

September 23, 2014


I’ve probably mentioned here that I’m not a naturally gifted crafter. But I strive to be. I love to make things, and I love to make things that are free.

I’ve been seeing pennants popping up online that aren’t sports related : ones that include inspirational messages or song lyrics or anything else of the sort. One night, I was itching to make something (and in the mood to add to my happy little gallery wall), so I made this. It was super easy and super free (as I already had the supplies), and it adds a nice pop of yellow and fun to our wall. I didn’t take photos of the process, but it should be simple enough to follow. Here’s what I did:

1. Cut a piece of felt 12 inches long by 7 inches wide.

2. Decide on a phrase (my husband loves to shout this in moments of encouragement), use a stencil to trace the letters onto the felt, and cut out the letters. Tip: if you can, write the words backwards. After you cut out the letters, you can flip the felt over and not see any pen marks on the front.

3. Cut a wide triangle off the bottom of the felt.

4. Use a piece of twine or string (mine was 17 inches), make a loop, and tie a knot. Fold the top inch of the felt over the twine. I don’t know how to sew, and I’m lazy, so I honestly just taped the back of the felt over the twine using packing tape. You can sew it if you’re a professional. ;)


And I’ve said this before and will say it again: if I can do it, you can do it. Have fun picking whatever phrase your heart desires and whatever shape pennant you want. Happy crafting!

-wonderland sam

25 for my 25th

September 10, 2014


Today is my 25th birthday. Yikes. How am I already closer to 30 than I am to 20? It’s such a cliche, but time really does move faster the older you get. Lately I’ve been feeling really nostalgic about my childhood and college years and how I didn’t treasure those moments enough. A lot has changed since then, and if there is one thing I’ve learned, it’s that you have to appreciate the every day. Life moves too fast, and it doesn’t help that we live in a culture that is always looking to the future (that next milestone, vacation, big job, etc.). But if you’re stuck in the future, you’re going to miss today. In ten years I don’t want to look back and think that I should have appreciated my mid-twenties more. I want to soak up every moment of it.

There are a lot of things I want to do with my life. There are a lot of places I want to visit and goals I want to accomplish and experiences I want to…well, experience.

So here’s to 25! I’m scared of that growing number, but I know life has barely just begun. Here are 25 things for my 25th birthday that I want to do in the next year (in addition to just living in the moment, right?):

1. Visit Portland, Oregon

2. Learn how to use a sewing machine

3. Make my own sandwich bread

4. Go apple picking

5. Enroll Kipling in an obedience class (you can still teach an old dog new tricks, right?)

6. Read the entire Anne of Green Gables series

7. Buy a new mattress

8. Run 3 miles straight (I’ve never run more than 2 miles)

9. Go camping at Joshua Tree

10. Get my splits back (this will be the year)

11. Go on a day long hike

12. Take a lesson at a shooting range (so I can believably shoot a gun on TV)

13. Take a SkillShare or other online class

14. Learn how to actually plant an herb garden (my last attempt was half-hearted and failed)

15. Have a pen pal

16. Read Harry Potter (it’s probably time, huh?)

17. Book a national commercial

18. Book a role on a TV show

19. Sign with a theatrical agent

20. Have a picnic in Central Park

21. Ride on a train

22. Invest in new friendships

23. Unplug (I’m tired of technology!)

24. Find a fitness regimen that is right for me (finally)

25. Be happy.

I’m just going to do what makes me happy. And my new decision maker? Will I regret doing it, or will I regret not doing it? I think that’s a good way to look at things. ;)

-wonderland sam

things that make me happy

August 29, 2014


A homemade banner for our wall.


A wind chime to hang by our hanging plants (confession: it’s from Disneyland).


A book I am thoroughly enjoying but also desperately trying to finish as it’s already past due at the library (this is a long book, guys).


A page from my Project Life album – almost finished with this past year’s album.

-wonderland sam

sweet summertime part two

August 28, 2014


This summer was the summer of visitors. A month after my family visited, my in-laws came into town for a week and a half. I didn’t snap too many photos (I was enjoying the leisure of having them take the photos), but here are a few from my film camera. We had a great time showing them new places and having a few new experiences ourselves.

We caught a concert at the Hollywood Bowl, spent a day at the beach (trying to) surf, got Korean BBQ, visited the Getty Villa, ate Roscoe’s chicken and waffles (so. good.), went to the Culver City fair, took a tour on the Warner Brothers lot, and got seafood at Redondo Beach. They took many more photos on their phones and camera, so I may share some of those later.



Thanks to my sister for giving me my dream dress!






Sunset at the beach? √

-wonderland sam


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