Tuesday, December 31, 2013

2013, i salute you

so happy new year and all that.  i've been horribly absent on this blog (i've decided to blame end of year business and the weather/hibernation effect), but i wanted to share a few things from 2013 that i didn't ever get around to posting.  a kind of "year in review" only with brand new information. (queue phoebe gif)

cute alpaca action at pre-valentine's craft bazaar

engagement + old 97s concert = best valentine's day

sometimes i feed the seagulls at lunch.  i call them my chickens.

college beach near williamsburg and then a bovine encounter. with a rainbow back at home.
zoo visit during my birthday week. it's $2 to feed giraffes (as opposed to tens or hundreds at other zoos.)
2nd beach trip, jamestown ferry  - there was a state park with a swimming pool on the other side of the river. 
all i'd wanted all summer was to go swimming in a pool.
shins show, giraffe dog, mermaid hair, limberlost (see "freckles"), dried up frog i found under some towels on my clothes dryer, hideous australia platter i liked *almost* enough to get.
champers and risk, shopping center great blue heron, receiving the new spacehog album in the mail,
ahmazing bananas foster crepe, tardis hat in the rain.

alrighty, peeps.  have a happy new year! ima peace out and...

Tuesday, December 3, 2013

state of the nation

i've been such a bad blogger!  not a peep in weeks.  i don't know whether to blame the fall hibernation mode or that i've been busy.  a bit of both i guess.  it's such a cliche, but time is just flying by.  i think it helps that i've had stuff to do.  well, not "do" so much as "click around online at."  some of the stuff on my plate:

looking at getting a car.  my aunt is generously funding a new (used) car for me.  ugh, that sounds so privileged, doesn't it?  it's kind of funny, in a non-ha ha way, that i grew up within a pretty limited-budget household, but sometimes golden nuggets just kind of fall in my lap with no work or effort on my part.  (my current car was also donated to me, by aunt's husband, uncle, after his mother passed.)  but it doesn't boggle my mind if i think about it too hard, because that's not the level of lifestyle in which i was raised.  i was a kid with a single mom working on her PhD, living in student housing, shopping at kmart. we didn't have a lot, but there was money for the occasional treat.  (getting a happy meal was a treat. going to the local mexican restaurant on "kids eat free" wednesdays was a treat, "earning" a trapper-keeper by doing chores and being not-naughty was a treat.)  i couldn't put whatever i wanted in the grocery basket and i got home haircuts and never had a store-bought halloween costume. my mom drove a truck that was older than me (which i died during my sophmore year in college) and we never had a dishwasher.  not poor, really, but poor-ish in comparison with a good portion of families. (and very blessed in comparison to many others).  my mom, she must have been a phenomenal budgeter, because she was able to take me to disneyland (with cheap student tickets) and we saw the the ballet (in the balcony seats) and went to the movies (matinee, snuck in snacks).  so i did get to do a lot of stuff, but we weren't "in the money" by any means.  and to me, being given a car is on par with being taken on european vacations, going summer camp, i don't know what else.. having ponies?
i say that kind of with tongue-in-cheek, but it's important to me that when i say i'm being given a car that people realize that *i* realize how amazing it is and how grateful i am, and that it's not at all expected or a case of entitlement.

anyhow, in another lucky stroke, a family-in-law member manages a car place and it looks like he may have found one for me.  which is good because he'll check it out for me and if i can save my aunt some money too, i'd like to.

so there's been that going on.

i've also finally started to (somewhat) plan my wedding.  i have some ideas kicking around, but no solid plans yet.  neither mark or i want a traditional wedding, or even one with people invited.  (we're such nut-cases, i swear.)  i don't want people to show up and me have had an anxiety attack and canceled the thing, and he hates attention of any and all sorts. (and yet, he's a musician, go figure.)  so there's the "do we invite parents or no" debate and if we do it might be best to do it during my mom's pre-planned june visit. if mark can stand her and his parent's looking at him taking the vows.

i *have* bought a dress that i think i'm pretty happy with, and yesterday i bought the shoes i'd been eyeing. (both modcloth, which i had never purchased from before - see, i told you i'm not a real blogger.)   since my aunts won't be there i've purchased and re-styled some "sapphire" earrings into 4 necklaces, so they, my mom, and i can each have a "something-blue" matching wedding bauble and be "connected."  (that's a lot of quotes, sorry about that.)  i sort of looked at what mark might wear and where we might do the ceremony.  i even pinned some stuff!

i've been immersed in watching "vampire diaries," which is like, the best worst show ever and is constantly making me cry.  (to be fair, i teared up during "tinkerbell: secret of the wings.")  i just love me some attractive vampire angst, and is it me or has damon been amazing this season?  he needs a talk show or something.
well, i've come to the end of my thoughts for the night.  i need to clean up and shower because mark gets off early and we may have some time to cuddle in front of the fire (space heater) and watch some tv before i go to bed.

hope everyone out there had a good thanksgiving (and if i have the energy in a future post i might have some stuff to say about the state of our society re: the way we're so wrapped up in goods and services and how i think that's weird and cavemen would agree). 

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

out in california

mark got some great news today and i'm so excited to share it.  i don't know if i've mentioned, but when mark isn't at his day (afternoon to night) job, he's in musician mode.  i think i did mention that he's been in a few bands, some in l.a. and some here.  he's constantly working in his studio in our house, creating projects and writing and recording.  it's always good when hard work pays off, and i'm happy to say that one of his songs was picked up to be in a tv show next week.

who's that girl guy, who's that girl guy, it's jess mark!

"out in california," from one of mark's band's self-titled album, "edison gower," is going to be on new girl next week!  we won't know how it's used until we watch the show, but it's in there and he's gettin' some straight cash dollars! i *think* mark wrote this during the year we were apart, him having moved back to richmond before i was able to come out almost a year later.  there's a girl in the song i like to think is me - mark says she's more of an idea, but she could be me if i wanted.. haha.  it's definitely one of my favorites.. it reminds me of the desert and the time.. it makes me miss california.  the only thing i wish is that he had sung it for the record (the other guy, jake, sang it), but he is on the harmonies and the "middle 8."

anyway, watch the show and let me know what you think.

and here's a link to the rough demo if you fancy hearing mark sing it a bit slap dash.. haha
Out in California (demo) - Edison Gower

Monday, October 28, 2013

fox & skull

on saturday i took a little jaunt to a local park to get my photo on.  it was a lovely day and i found a perfect little bridge to pose with.  i've been wearing this gettup pretty much non-stop for two weekends.  i like to find something i love and run it into the ground.  i'm cool like that.

i'm like a girl ichabod, right?

coat: worthington | sweater: old navy | jeans: mossimo supply co.
shirt: ross | boots: mossimo supply co. | covered wagon necklace: modcloth | fringe purse: roxy

i got a little cute with the beauty shots.  a women came along after i had taken a few pics, parked her bike, and hung out for awhile.  i know i've said i'm not easily embarrassed, but nor do i like asking for side-eyes.  so while she looked out on the view i snuck some close-ups.  then there's the fun of going through the photos with instagram and coming out with something where you think, "hey, i don't look that bad there!" haha

and holy crap, that fox sweater from last fall is going for $199 on ebay?!  i paid $15 for it on sale.  i totally feel cool, you guys!  the boots, purse, and necklace are sold out too because i'm on the cutting edge of fashion.  little house on the prairie fashion.  


oh, for feck's sake.  what is this chicanery?  the day i buy a cabinet knob for $128 is the day i give you permission to check me into a mental facility. 

speaking of, i've gained a new idiom care of my adopted town/acquaintances.  i use it not sporadically.  "going to tuckers" or "they'll drive me to tuckers" is slang for "going to the mental hospital" i.e., going crazy (tuckers being a local facility).  i do like having a local institution one can refer to in such a manner.. it just seems more homey.  like bedlam in england, or sing sing prison in ny.  about once a week i tell my co-workers they're gonna have to visit me in tuckers.  on the plus side, i hear there's finger painting.

Sunday, October 27, 2013

Shoes, Shoes, Shoes, Yeah!

Shoes, Shoes, Shoes, Yeah!

1. | 2. | 3. | 4. | 5. | 6. | 7. | 8. | 9. | 10. | 11. | 12.

if i was a rich girl, na na na na na na na na na na na na na na na, see i'd have all the shoes in the world, if i was a wealthy girl.

i would happily welcome any pair of these beauties into my home.   come to me now, my pretties!  i can't even tell you which one i like the most.  i *think* though, that (if they were comfortable), i'd probably get the most wear out of the green pumps.  they could easily be a work shoe and they're a little less outgoing than the purple pump (which comes in other colors, including ivory which would be lovely for a vintage-style wedding).  the rest are just lovely daydreams.

what are your favorite fall shoes?

Saturday, October 26, 2013

let's get out of this country

today was gorgeous.  crisp, cool air.  bright blue skies.  the only thing missing was orange and yellow leaves.  fall is officially here but the trees don't know it yet.  i can't complain though.  it rained for almost two weeks straight and i am SO over it.  (poor mark got a raw deal for his two week vacation.. poor guy.)  i had wanted to do some fall-y things, but it's hard to be excited about having a picnic or going apple picking when it's gray and drizzley every day.  we did make a stop at the historical museum to pick up a xmas present for mark's mom at the gift shop and i took a few photos in there of some of the interesting stuff they had.

colonial candy
VA territory from the 1600s to today.
genuine confederate cash dollars.  for sale!
snakes on a train
(like any respectable civil war era photographer i might have arranged this photo.)

when i first moved here i was totally into the history of the city.  i'd drive around town looking at the statues and the old houses and cobblestone streets.  i'd go to the museums and historical sites.  coming from socal, everything seemed so ancient to me.  but i'm pretty much over it now.  richmond doesn't look like "richmond - the historical city" to me anymore.  it's just "richmond - the place i live."  every so often though i'll have a sort of flashback feeling and look through the lens of one unfamiliar with all this and it will just hit me that this place is old, yo!  i've always loved thinking about what things used to look like and how people lived.  i was never very interested in the political aspect of history or why nations did x or y.  i was always interested in the every day people, how they lived and what they thought about things.  seeing things like that confederate money makes me wonder who owned that and what they bought with it or what they were saving it for.  it's weird to think that i know how the war turned out and how their money was worthless, but the person who had that money didn't know at the time.  

last weekend the rain finally eased up by sunday, so we went for a drive in the country.  we had intended to go to one of the larger pumpkin patches in the area, but the placed was MOBBED so we pretty much left straight away.  no way am i standing in a mile long line to get in a wagon to go to a patch to pick out a $20 pumpkin.  the drive was good though - pretty fall scenery and tunes on the player.  i was in charge of the map, so i "tricked" mark into going by a dairy queen in the area.  gotta get my cherry dipped cone on!

superstars pizza for lunch
i can't resist a facehole photograph opportunity.
i kinda dropped the ball on pretty country photos.
i got kind of used to having mark around every night, so this week was kind of weird and quiet.  i kinda liked having the guy around.  here's hoping we come into a windfall and he can stay home every night.

Monday, October 21, 2013

swiftly painted challenge - october

in september i was invited to participate in the Swiftly Painted Self Portrait Challenge, created by AnnMarie at The Simply Swift Blog and Jess at The Iris.  oh, how exciting!  one of the reasons i am blogging is to interact with people on the internet who are not a) comment trolls, b) acquaintances from high school/college who lead more exciting lives than me and post about them on facebook, and c) my mom.  (i won't count the people in my tv because technically they are not on my internet.  wait.  i almost exclusively watch netflix and hulu via my wii.  so i guess i lied.)  like a good sloth i have waited until (almost) the last few days to participate in this month's challenge, but i am here!  (i have had a lot of stuff going on lately, so it's not all sheer laziness - more in a another post.)

here's october's promt:
Reflect and respond to this statement: your followers follow you willingly. Create an image of what describes you as a blogger. Bonus points for little clues about what’s going on in your life.

well, i'm not really aware that i have any followers as of yet, and that's ok.  i do appreciate every time i see the little counter on my blog stats register another visitor.  but i still feel like i'm just starting out and also i'm not intending this to be any more than a place to call my own and, as i mentioned, have some interaction between like-minded individuals.  my blog isn't the prettiest, the most crafty, the funniest, the most stylish, or the smartest, and i'm not trying to be that.  i guess the goal i have for it is to be real.  it's just moments of me on a screen for the world to look at and take it for what it is.  it's pretty much how i live my life, just doing my thing like a chicken wing.  i will be that girl wearing a tiara around town on her (33rd) birthday, i will be the girl in sweats at target (or sometimes i dress up!), i will be the girl posing in her backyard taking iphone photos and not quite getting it right, i will be the girl who a bird poops on and post a picture of it because i think it's funny.  of course i'm cautious of what i put on the internet - you have to be - but i don't think i have any designs towards pretentiousness, and i'm not easily embarrassed (my one gift from anxiety - you'd think it'd have had the opposite effect, but when it's bad it's "honey badger don't care" bad and that's kinda grafted itself to my personality).

here's my photo for october's prompt.  i took this a few minutes ago.  there's me on the couch, laptop in lap, fresh out of the shower, soup bowl not put in the sink like a non-lazy person, clutter on the table.  this is how i roll and how my blog rolls.  i put a nice filter on it because, i like to pretend i make pretty pictures, and there's a pillow on the chair that i recovered during one of my crafty bouts.  and yes that is a sheet covering the most hideous chair possibly imaginable because what else would you put on it?  i like to keep it classy, said the girl with a turbie twist on her head. 

now, if you'll excuse me, my manager at work found some cherry amaretto coconut bliss at one of the area's health food stores and it has been a gigundo amount of time since i last had that in my mouth, so this needs to happen pretty much now.

The Simply Swift Blog

Sunday, October 6, 2013

i'm good at escaping but better at flaking out

so i've been a little m.i.a.  i've had a lot of stuff going on and haven't had as much time to post as of late.  i've also had a dip in energy, as in none.  everyone loves the fall, and living in so cal i used to (even though the changes were minor, the weather was nicer), but for some reason the va seasons really hit me a lot harder.  i never got s.a.d. (seasonal affective disorder) in so cal, but i definitely feel it's effects here.  combined with the colder weather (and it seems like it just hits from out of the blue one day) really just put me in a hibernation preparation mode.  (this last week and this weekend have been super warm though, like uncomfortably warm, but i'm expecting it to start chilling any time now.)

oh, and also?  netflix putting out all of last season's shows?  one of my favorite things about fall.  it's like a buffet. once upon a time, the office, parks and rec, 30 rock, vampire diaries, psych (soon, i hope), hart of dixie, call the midwife, bomb girls.  i can't stop.  i won't stop.

for now, until i get my energy up again, here's a quick collage of some of the things that have been going on:

clockwise from top right: a dried up frog i found on top of my dryer (under some stuff i had piled there), pretty gate, gorgeous military coat i pulled the trigger on, just deep conditioning my hairs, fruit and veggie haul, and i got my pastel ends cut off (and am trying the natural curls look this season to give my hair a break.

and here's a fun Which Midwife Are You? quiz.  i got cynthia.

Friday, September 13, 2013

blogtember day 9

Friday, September 13: A self portrait

here's a selfie i took in july on my mini-staycation.

yeah, that's pretty much accurate on an every other day basis.

Thursday, September 12, 2013

blogtember day 8

Thursday, September 12: Discuss ways that blogging or social media has changed you.

i don't feel that i've been doing this long enough or have had enough interactions to say that blogging has changed me.  and i haven't really given thought as to how social media has changed me.  i guess i am more aware of taking photos and recording things in my mind to tell later or to make little quips to be interesting. it's good in a way because it makes you look out for the little things, but in another way it's more artificial than letting it happen organically.  so it has it's mix, like all things i guess.

let's talk about pre-social media, pre-blogging, pre-online journals.  what am i talking about?  a diary.  a teen girl's diary.  i was looking for something this morning before work and i found a handful of half-full diaries from my formative years.  oh, the memories, the excitement, the humiliation.  i did a quick read through at lunch and had to keep from laughing out loud, some of my entries were so funny.  and some of my kid-mind insights were surprisingly relevant.  and lucky you, i'm going to share some snippets (original spelling and all):

"Friday, October 15, '93 -  Tomorow we're going to the beach. I hope I can play v-ball. I like the name Barky. I wouldn't mind if people called me that I guess."
wtf?  barky?  i have no idea where i got that from or why on earth i thought it sounded good.  

"Tuesday, October 26, '93 - Today I signed up for to be drug free. I got a button and a pencil."
whoo,  a button *and* a pencil? just for "to be"ing drug free?  gimme that pledge sheet!

"Monday, November 13, '93 - I keep thinking about M. I don't know if I like him. I might decide weather or not to decide to like him again."
so shrewd, right? it's like "sex and the city" or something. you make him work for it, little christine!

[talking about my "dean cain fever"] "5/10/94 - I wish "Superman" was on every single night. I want to write more so I can prove how much I like him but I'm just to tired. I'm really, really, really sorry."
haha.. i love how i felt i had to apologize to the universe via my diary for not "proving" my love for a celebrity by getting carpal tunnel syndrome. 

[on being over liking M and my current disdain for him] "Wednesday, 9, 21, 94 - May God have mercy on me that I never be that idiotic again."
oh kid, the sentiment is nice, but just you wait.

"Nov 5, 94 sat. - I like A. sometimes I'll be just hanging around and then I'll think about him and wonder why I like him. then I'll go to 6th period and everytime he looks at me I'll feel weird and like, I notice everything he does."
i mean, right?  this is pretty much every crush i ever had, and i suspect you know what i'm talking about.

i'll leave you with this last selection - it's probably my favorite one:
"Sunday, 1, 1, 1995 9:56 pm - Over winter vacation I saw Little Women. Wynona Ryder was Jo. She was so good. She is so pretty. If I could wish to have her face and she'd have a different one I would.
look out Winona - christine is coming for your face.  

Wednesday, September 11, 2013

blogtember day 7

Wednesday, September 11: Share links to your favorite online shops, preferably with a few photos of your favorite items in each shop.
so.. i don't really have a favorite online shop.  unless you count target or amazon.  i don't shop online too often. shipping is expensive and i need to try on clothes before buying. the only thing i've splurged on in any recent history is pacifica products..  am i allowed to keep my blog if i admit that i've never bought anything from modcloth?

instead of sharing some fun shopping, i will instead share an anecdote from last night. anyone who converses with me on a regular basis will at some point get to hear about my wacked out dreams.  and then they laugh and laugh.  i have multiple dreams every night, often reoccurring.  sometimes i feel like i didn't get any sleep for all the adventures i went on.  it can be tiring!  

last night took the cake though.  not in content, but in... action?  i'm not sure what to call this experience.  i dreamed i put something in my mouth i didn't like the taste of, and i spit it out, very sloppily and forcefully. i must have been near wakefulness, because about a minute later i woke up to find... i had legit spit on myself.  IRL.  slobber was running down my cheek and onto my neck/ear parts and the pillow. i was all groggy, and  like, "am i still dreaming?  how did this... waaaaat????
now i've heard of sleepwalking (i used to when i was young), sleep eating, even sleep sex and sleep driving.  but i've never heard of someone spitting on themselves while sleeping.  

i'm just going to assume this is a sign of some sort of hidden genius.   that sounds good... let's go with that.

Tuesday, September 10, 2013

blogtember day 6

Tuesday, September 10: Describe a distinct moment when your life took a turn.

well, well, this post could very well be about anxiety. again.  the main sharp turn in my life. i could write about coming down with food poisoning while driving home from l.a. on the freeway, vomiting all over my jacket and spending an hour in the denny's bathroom barfing up a lung.  i could write about how after that my stomach was shot and i started waking up anxious as hell with a tight swirling stomach but not realizing it was anxiety and instead thinking there was something wrong with me for months until i finally saw a commercial for paxil and i realized what it was. i could literally write a book about all the crap i have been through since that one incident, and by the way, apparently anxiety disorder symptoms *can* manifest itself in one episode and you're kind of screwed from then on.  (and then you look back at your life and realize you were always high-strung.)

but i don't want everything in my life to be about that.  and it's not, really.  i can't think of any other distinct singular moment, but i can think of little tiny moments that added up to my life now.  

i met my fiance online. we've been together for over 13 years. he is my best friend and is the most important person in the world to me. and i almost never met him.

if i hadn't been listening to the radio that one summer morning before college started. (and honestly, what was i doing listening to the radio on a summer morning? that's sleeping time, yo!)  for some weird reason, and now that i think about it i've never heard anything like that on the radio since, the station was previewing a new album by the band, dishwalla.  i only knew "counting blue cars" but this new stuff was great.  the radio show played about a minute of each song and by the end of the preview i knew i wanted to get the album. so i did and played it constantly and drove my mom a little crazy, i'm sure.

if i hadn't fallen in love with the album, i wouldn't have gone to a dishwalla show.  i was walking to school one bright march morning and just happened to turn my walkman off to listen to the radio (which i hardly ever do, that's another thing.  and yes, walkman.  this was '99 and i didn't even own a cd player yet.. haha.)  so i'm listening to whatever station and they announced a dishwalla show. in my new college town (l.a.). and i could go!  

some baby-faced girl and the guitarist from dishwalla.
 if i hadn't gone to the dishwalla show, i wouldn't have seen the openers, one of which was kara's flowers. i  they were *so* good.  the other openers, phantom planet, were also awesome.  my first concert (in a club, not a stadium), and i hit the jackpot. (it didn't hurt that the girl in the apartment next to me brought her friend who knew dishwalla and we got to go backstage.  yeah, that's right.. my first concert and i'm already chillin like a groupie?  whaaaat? *high-five* haha.)  

if i hadn't seen the openers, my life wouldn't have changed.  of course, this whole thing is a life-wouldn't-be-the-same type of scenario, but my life really did change because of that.  i started going to kf/pp shows and became what i termed a "club kid," which really would have worked out a whole lot better if i'd had a car and friends in the city and money to go more places.  as it was i just went to as many shows as possible, became acquainted with many different people in "the scene," and just had an awesome spring/summer/fall/winter. basically my version of club kid was just being on the fringes of being a scenester. only i wasn't really cool.  i did, however, totally nerd out and create a tribute website for kara's flowers, which i had fallen hard for.  i told people they made the music my soul would make if it could make music.  which sounds totally lame now, i know, but it's actually still true.  i mean, my soul *now* wouldn't sound like kara's flowers sounded then, but at the time it did and i still totally stand by that.  it was like they had gone into the core of me and played what they saw. looking back the music isn't as amazing as i thought, but my tastes have changed just a bit and i still say their music at the time was solid. not *the best* but really damn good.

"club kid." i don't even know.
want to see some more?  i know you do.

the "cutting my own hair" phase. i'd do it again too if i could get away with this style.

24/7 rock.  and blowpops?

oh, i loved my baby pink watch.

and then i tinted my hair green.
 if i hadn't made the website, i wouldn't have met tom.  tom was in another band, out of richmond, va, and he e-mailed me that spring to let me know they were coming to l.a. that summer for a music festival of sorts, and would be sharing the bill with kf. long story short, we became very good e-mail/aim (this was back when we were all on aim, omg we're old!) friends.  (his band didn't end up making it out that summer, but they did end up coming out the summer of '00.)  as it turns out, mark, my fiance, had been friends with tom for awhile at this point, but i still hadn't met him yet.

if i hadn't gone to all these shows and made the website, i wouldn't have met my friend k at a show, and another girl online. these were the days of message boards and do they still have those anymore?  anyway, i introduced k and girl online and they became friendly. in the summer of '99 girl and two of her friends flew out to l.a. and stayed with k and i drove out to visit with them.  well k and i kind of got left behind a lot when the others went to see band people, so one night i was really bummed about it and k and i said eff this and we busted out the l.a. weekly and looked at the show offerings of a tuesday night (or whatever night it was) and went into hollywood to see a new songwriter i'd heard on the radio the week before.  (which, ok this is also weird, i was doing my hairs in the bathroom, turned to a local station, and i hear tom's band on the radio!  the dj was doing his pick of the week and somehow their album ended up in his hands and he played one of their songs.  so of course i was all excited and kept listening to see if he'd do any more.  he didn't, but i did hear an interview with a local singer-songwriter, jason falkner.  he played a few songs and i really liked them, and he plugged his show.  i had forgotten this when i opened the paper to look for shows and i was like, wait, i know that guy, let's go!)  his show was, to say the least, amazing. so, so good. he is still one of my favorite artists today. i bought his newest album at the show and proceeded to listen the hell out of it.
mr. j.f. on the night of.
 annnd, if i hadn't gone to jason's show, i wouldn't have liked him and i wouldn't have listed him as a favorite in my profile on tom's band's message board, and several months later mark wouldn't have seen that we had so much in common (jason was probably his favorite artist at that point), and he wouldn't have e-mailed this cool girl (me) to see what was shakin'. 

me, the day mark first e-mailed me. he had no idea. and that is a jf shirt.

after many days of e-mailing and long nights of chit-chatting, we decided that we fit pretty well together and would probably make a good couple.  we official met on mark's birthday in '00 when he flew out to visit me.  we hung out, went to shows, went to tom's band's show that they flew out for, went to disneyland, knott's berry farm, and the beach, and basically decided that we were a match. 

two tiny children at disneyland.
(oh hey, look, it's my princess tiara)

 so, there ya go.  little moments of decisions that led down the road to love.  awww.