It's Almost Here!

I can't wait for Christmas break!
Now I just have to get through finals.
4 down, 1 to go!


23rd Annual Spiritual & Religious Art of Utah

This is not my piece.

I have a piece in this show.  I guess I should go see it.


Music to my ears. Literally.

Please buy this if you want your Christmas to be complete.


The missing link.

For years and years and years I have wondered, "Oh where, oh where, did my artistic 'abilities' come from?" Well, today my Mom relocated from the upstairs couch to the downstairs couch (she is recovering from surgery) and turned on the TV to a Winslow Homer documentary. I have always been a fan of Homer--probably because he is such a magnificent watercolorist (ahem, I LOVE watercolor), and he was able to create great and substantial work in this somewhat neglected medium (FYI: in my opinion bigger is not better, and painting in oil does not make your work more meaningful. Sorry). Anyway...after watching for about two seconds my Mom said, "Hey, I'm related to him! You know you are related to him, right?" Um, HELLO! I had NO IDEA! And I am so excited because I feel like my insatiable watercolor/American landscape tendencies/cravings make a lot more sense. Also, my love for Homer makes so much more sense now...and my Mom's name also...doesn't make more sense...but is suddenly cooler.



I just wanted to reiterate that in my heart I am still a Ute.  I have never claimed to be a cougar in my five years of college.  I was a Ute fan before we won today, and after we won I was even happier.  I wore red tonight and got harassed for doing so.  It was awesome.

And I am still a Ute even if I attend the big BY.
You cannot take that away from me.


I'm alive.

I'm sure none of you were worried about the fact that this past week (that is not over) could possibly take my life, but I just wanted to let you all know that I am alive and frantically researching the man that painted this beautiful landscape (among other things).  And yes I have changed my research topic three times over the past week.  Don't worry about it.  I have until Monday morning.

PS - Hope you are feeling better, Dad.  It was good to see you last night!
PPS - Lizzie, I'm calling you Tuesday and I miss you lots!


THIS could very well be a preview of my final show.

So After an enormous amount of deliberation I think I have decided on what I am going to sell my soul to for the next five months.  The above painting is a very unfinished piece (that I have already spent more time working on [after the above photo] and plan to spend even more time working on in the future).  For a few years I have been toying with the idea of painting landscape, and I have finally decided (I THINK!) that there is no better time to do this than right now.  So, I have a million pictures that I have already taken (I have been "thinking about doing this show" for years, like I said), and years of experience hiking through these canyons, so all I need to do now is paint them and make them good.  

Think I can do it?  Anyone?



So for FHE tonight my apartment was in charge of the activity.  So, of course, I came up with the brilliant idea of making caramel apples (and by "came up with the brilliant idea," I mean that I copied my friends FHE activity from last week).  It was such a blast!  I just thought I would share the recipe we used...


6 apples
14 oz individually wrapped caramels (unwrapped of course) 
2 tbs milk


1.  Remove the stem from each apple and press a craft stick into the top.  Butter a baking sheet.
2.  Place caramels and milk in a microwave safe bowl, and microwave 2 minutes, stirring once.  Allow to cool briefly.
3.  Roll each apple quickly in caramel sauce until well coated.  Place on prepared sheet to set.

They turned out great.  My only suggestion is that you make sure your apples are washed and dry before you use them.  And try not to get waxy apples...they make it so the caramel doesn't set very well.  Also, we melted the caramels in the microwave and then put the gooey caramel in a pot on the stove on low so that it stayed at a good consistency.  When you dunk the apples, make sure you let them sit there for a sec so that the caramel can start setting.  Also, there will be lots of excess so make sure you get it off.  I guess I had more than one suggestion.  Anyway...happy fall!


Charming, right?

Thanks, Giacomo Balla.

Favorite season?

Okay, so, most of you know that I LIVE for Summer.  It is absolutely my favorite season.  I love the sun, the fact that it shines, the fact that it makes me warm, the fact that it makes me tan, etc, etc.  I am also IN LOVE with the fact that I get to wear ridiculously, sinfully bright colors that shouldn't be legal in any of the fifty states.  I also love lime popsicles, pebble ice, going swimming, laying by the pool, hiking in Zion, going to the condo...the list goes on and on.  

Well, today I was thinking that I might possibly have a new favorite season: Autumn.  Okay, that's a lie. I guess it's not my favorite but it is rivaling my love for Summer quite forcefully.  I think it could be my favorite season, but only under certain conditions.  Wait, I have an idea.  What if we made Autmer, Sumtumn, or something like that?  The last two months of Summer, the first two months of Autumn...that would be the perfect season.  Any thoughts?  Lime popsicles AND nutmeg all in the same season?  I think I'm on to something here!



I felt bad posting a big long thing for Tyler's birthday and not wishing my Mom a super happy birthday too.  Her birthday was on the 18th, and this is one of two pictures I have of her (she has never been a picture person).  As soon as I got off work on Saturday I went to Salt Lake and spent the evening with her, so I'm not going to elaborate much on this.  I just wanted to wish her a super happy birthday.

I love you!

Tyler P.

Philly 2007

A few years (by a few, I mean five years ago), I applied to BYU at the very last minute and got accepted.  It had never been my intention to go blue, but when the opportunity arose I was suddenly considering it (and quickly decided it was the right thing to do).  Since it had never been my intention to be a cougar, I was left with few housing options.  It came down to living in DT (never!), living in Rain Tree with my cousin, or living at King Henry just a few yards away from Tyler.  The best choice was pretty obvious: live by my brother.  So I did.  It was one of the best decisions I ever made, and my freshman year of college (spent with the 39ers) was one of the best years of my life.  Everyone in the ward thought Tyler and I were dating (because we were together all the time), and we built a solid friendship that remains strong to this day.  Today is Tyler's birthday, and though a surprise trip to Philadelphia would have been fun, I am left with this dinky little blog (and the phone call I already made) to wish him a happy big 2-8.

Visiting Ty in Philadelphia 2007

Part of why I love Tyler so much is because he was so excited to see a tapir.

...and because he was so excited to feed a zebra.

...and because he married one of my best friends.

...and because the goats look like they are eating his hair in this picture.

...and because I always think of him when I see monkeys.
Happy 28th Birthday, Ty!  



Mark your calendars...

No se preocupen, this is not a preview of my show.

Well kids, it's official.  A very, very important document came in the mail today.  And I'm officially freaking out.

Dear Melissa,

It is my pleasure to inform you that the proposal for your show has been cleared for exhibition.  The gallery staff is here to help, answer questions, and provide you with tools and hanging materials, but the remaining responsibilities, as outlined below, are yours.  The show will be installed in the BF Larsen Insets and Walnut Walls.

Exhibit dates are as follows:

Install Exhibit - Tuesday, March 17, 2009
Exhibit Opens - Wednesday, March 18, 2009
Exhibit Closes - Mondays, March 30, 2009
Remove Artwork - Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Bla, bla, bla.  

Guys, can you believe it?  It's coming!  There is a light at the end of the tunnel.  Now you all have the dates of the show (the opening will probably be the first weekend [3/20/09]), so mark your calendars.  You have no excuse not to be there.


The blog clock is wrong.

I don't know how to fix the post labels (time-wise), but, just so you know I posted that little birthday thing SUNDAY, OCTOBER 12, 2008, which is Patten's birthday.  I don't know what's wrong with this thing...

Oh wait I think it's because I STARTED it the day before and didn't post it until yesterday.  Hmph.



Cabin (Summer 2008)

Well my friends, it has been an entire YEAR since my little nephew was born.  I can hardly believe it.  It seems like just yesterday Dave and Kristin came over to announce the pregnancy.  The night before Tyler surprised everyone and flew out to propose to Becca.  It was one of the happiest weekends our family remembers.

Now, I probably won't be making an entire blog post for every niece and nephew's birthday, but many of you are aware that Patten is very special to me for a number of reasons.  One (relatively unimportant) reason is that he has my favorite name for a little boy.  Most importantly, however, is the fact that he came at a very lonely time in my life and has literally served, in many cases, as a guardian angel to me.  Nothing can make me smile like my little nephew.  Nothing could (truly) make me smile for a very long time before he came.  I just wanted to wish him the happiest birthday in the world, because he deserves it. 

Christmas 2007

Tyler and Becca's Wedding (December 2007)


Baby Talk

Happy Birthday, ma Patten!
I love you!


Streptococcus pyogenes

I just liked the name.

Oh, and the fact that my entire apartment has it (I'm positive Anne's immune system will cave within the next couple of days).


This is subliminal.

Knock knock.

Who's there?


Archie who?



I couldn't resist.

The events of the past 12 hours have been so ridiculous I thought I would share them with y'all so that you can have a good laugh. I'm not looking for pity. Seriously. I just needed to record this somewhere so that I can never forget my terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day.

10:30 pm - I send out a blackboard email to my entire class with a copy of my analysis (of an analysis) of The Things They Carried by Tim O'Brien. Yeah. Most boring assignment ever.
11:00 pm - I start working on my art history paper that is due at 2:00 today. The other paper took way longer than expected. Plus I was a little distracted (I have been as of late).
3:15 am - I finish my art history paper, save it and send a draft to my Dad just to get his opinion. I am always seeking validation in writing. Don't worry about it.
7:30 am - I wake up and realize that I turned my alarm off at 7:00 am. I know. I need to sleep more.
7:35 am - I get on my computer to see if Dad has said anything wonderful/attempt to email my art history paper to myself so that I can polish it in-between classes.
7:37 am - I realize after looking at my email account that I never attached the paper to send to my Dad. Oh and don't worry, everything I have done on my computer in the past few days is completely erased. Nowhere to be found.
7:50 am - After panicking and talking to Rachel's uncle on the phone we come to the conclusion that my hard-drive is failing. No big deal. At least I got that other paper sent out...
7:55 am - I check to see if my other paper got sent out. I realize that I accidentally sent the rough draft out which includes comments in huge bold text that say things like, "I need more analysis here. Come on, help me out." The final draft (which is actually a very good paper) is erased from my hard-drive. You've got to be kidding me.
8:00 am - Frantically searching for the lost documents...
8:10 am - I email my teacher to tell her I won't be in class. It's my first time missing and if I miss after this my grade is docked in thirds.
8:20-8:45 am - I panic and begin writing my art history paper/trying to re-polish the English assignment.
8:46 am - Computer freaks out again. So I go to school.
9:15 am - I edit and print out my English paper and take it to my teacher's office. He tells me that I am turning it in too late and gives me an awesome lecture. I would argue with him but he only has one hand and I feel like if I said that I was having a terrible, horrible, no good, very bad day, he would tell me to try living with a hook. I leave in shame.
9:49 am - I posted this blog entry because I can't stand to look at art history again (though the blog clock says it's a different time). Oh well. Here goes...

Please try to tell me that this isn't somewhat hilarious. I think that's why I am struggling to do the assignments. I just know I am going to be laughing about this tonight (I get over things pretty quickly).


High School Tag.

So, Tally did this on her blog and it looked so much fun that I told her to tag me. Is that how it works? I'm pretty sure that I am not allowed to request things like that. My problem is that I currently have nothing to blog about. School is consuming me. So, here is my lame attempt to avoid art history homework...

Did you date someone from your school?
Yes. Lots.

What kind of car did you drive?
I just used whatever car was at home. For some time it was the blessed Dodge minivan (white with maroon velvety interior). Then we upgraded to the silver Isuzu Rodeo. I used the white Toyota Camry before Tyler took it away from me, and toward the end of my senior year I got to drive the black beamer.

Were you a party animal?

Were you considered a flirt?
Sometimes, but never toward whoever I was dating. Twisted, I know (it's still a bad trait of mine).

Were you in band, orchestra, or choir?
Junior Choir, A'Capella, Madrigals.

Were you a nerd?
I took AP Chemistry (and English) but I don't think I was considered a nerd.

Were you on any varsity teams?
I started varsity volleyball junior and senior year, suited sophomore year, and practiced with varsity (inconsistently) freshman year. It was my job and I loved loved loved it.

Did you ever get suspended or expelled?
No. I ditched class frequently but I was very skilled at doing so. ("Mr. Thulin, would you like me to pick up a breakfast burrito for you while I'm out?" "Sure Missy, here's $5.00. Oh and by the way, I love you and you are getting an 'A' no matter how often you miss my class.")

Who were your favorite teachers?
Mr. Thulin because he let me do whatever I wanted to (manipulative much?)
Line Tuitupou because she was my coach and one of my best friends.
Suzan Lake because she taught me as much about life as she did about English (that's a LOT).
Anne Applegate because...well...you can't not love her and she taught me to love singing again.

Could you still sing the fight song?
I honestly don't think so. Um. L...

Where did you sit during lunch?
Someone's house, Wendy's, Great Harvest, or some floor in the commons depending on what year I was in school.

What was your school's full name?
Salt Lake High School East.

Did you go to homecoming?
Yes. Junior year my date showed up in a cherry-red polyester suit with flared legs. I thought my Mom was going to pass out. Good thing I hadn't bought that red dress...

What do you remember most about graduation?
Karen Hughes receiving a standing ovation from (pretty much) the entire senior class and everyone in the audience.

Where did you go senior skip day?
Wasn't every day a skip day senior year?

Were you in any clubs?
Some service club once upon a time, I think.

Have you gained some weight since then?
Things change when you no longer play volleyball for 4 hours a day.

Are you going to your ten year reunion?
I wouldn't put it past myself to miss that.

I tag...Shannon, Preethi, Jen vB, and Gianna.


Oh happy day.

I just wanted to announce that J Crew is opening a factory store in Park City.  I am so happy I wish I could put it into words.


I just wanted to inform all of you that I slept in until 7:45 am today.  
It was G-L-O-R-I-O-U-S.


For Dave, Krisy, and Patten

A little bird told me that you guys were sick (I saw the beginning parts of this bug and I believe it's true), so I thought I would make you a virtual get-well-soon kit.  These are things that I would bring you (in very particular order) if I were close enough to do so.  I hope you like them!  


I'm not sure what kind of soup I would bring you--probably chicken noodle--but this was a cute picture of soup and it illustrates my intentions quite nicely.  Soup always makes me feel good.  I eat it all the time!


It makes everything better.


I know you guys might object up-front.  But I like herbal tea, it makes me happy.  And it's caffeine-free.  And Aunt Theresa was a Celestial Seasonings fan so maybe you should try it.

I hope you guys feel better!  I miss you!
And thanks for letting me watch Patten the other day.  I l-o-v-e-d it of course.

Today I feel...

Top right.


The internal clock.

I wish I knew how to explain this better.

I am haunted by an impeccable internal alarm clock.  The kind that wakes me up no matter what, whether I like it or not, every single day.  I'm sure this sounds impossible to most of you because many are aware of how much I love to sleep...all the time.  But here I am.  It's 7:44 am and I was just called to another day by this better-than-quartz-and/or-atomic psychological machine.  The pain in the rump is that I don't have class until 12, and I was really hoping that due to a lower stress count I might be able to grab a few more hours of sleep this morning.  Oh well.  I guess not.

I actually have a few theories about why I can't sleep anymore (for a long time I couldn't sleep through the night at all, but due to a recent decision I have been able to sleep for at least 6 hours at a time, which Is progress):

- I have a lot to do.  My "to do" lists used to include sleeping (and breathing) because I was doing so little of these things.  
- My body is healing (slowly).  TONS of progress has been made, but a lot still needs to be made.  Regardless, I'm pretty sure my body associates sleeping with being sick in one way or another (18 hours of sleep a day?), so I'm thinking that due to my recent decision to force my body to get better, sleep is now taboo.
- Anxiety.  Anxiety?  Who would have guessed?  Not only do I worry when I have lots to do.  But I kind of worry when I have anything to do.  I don't like projects and deadlines lurking over me.  I'd rather work for 72 hours straight and relax than space inevitable malfunctions (ahem: lithography) out over a few weeks of light work loads.  I think my final show is starting to get to me.  It's in March.
- There is some inconceivable practical joke involving a higher power behind this catastrophe.

And for the rest of my life:

- I turned in my gallery space proposal form earlier this week.  This means that my BFA final show will be going up (if everything goes as planned), in March.  March!?  MARCH!?  Does anyone see that little glimmer?  Is there a light at the end of the tunnel?
- I turned in my gallery space proposal form earlier this week.  But I don't know what my final show is going to be.  Architectural or landscape?  Any ideas?  (PS I purposely made the first two sentences of the past two bullet points exactly the same).
- I am not going applying to architecture programs in December.  I know, I know.  I am so flaky.  I decided I would rather hang out with people than blueprints.  Architecture will remain a huge passion in my life, but I decided that art (and people) are too much a part of me to ignore.  I have come to realize this as I have started enjoying them again (they weren't fun when I was so sick).
- I am getting Indian food tonight with some friends for my birthday and we are having a little get together after.
- I vote for GMM every day.  Today's your last chance!  Vote here.
- I finally got my rock climbing pass this week.  
- I am baby-sitting Patten tomorrow and I can't wait!

 That's everything.  

PS: Seriously, if you have any recommendations for either pulverizing or patenting my internal clock, I'll gladly take them.  I might even share the billions of dollars I make off of selling parts of my brain to power all of your alarm clocks.  Cerebral powered, anyone?


I love art.

Just thought you should know.


My whole life has been a lie.

I'm sure that most of you have experienced something similar to what I did yesterday.  I was happily reading my physics assignment (which ended up taking me 3 1/2 hours), and I suddenly felt betrayed.  After reading a certain paragraph, I had to backtrack and read it two or three more times.  Gasp.  Matter was being broken down verbally right before me: from atoms, to nuclei, electrons, and finally quarks.  Quarks?  But Miss Mayall told me that there was nothing smaller than an electron!  I went through all of AP chemistry (with an "A", I'll have you know), believing that everything stopped at electrons.  I solved problem after endless problem, balanced equations and drew little structural bonds like a pro.  I'm serious.  If they had professional molecule-draftsmen, I could have turned in a portfolio of my structural sketches and been hired right out of high school starting with a six-figure salary.  My molecules were awesome.  (So awesome, in fact, that my brother Tyler, who was fresh off the mission and taking chemistry at BYU called me numerous times for help drawing molecules, figuring out where bonds were located, how to name isotopes, etc, etc, etc.  He goes to Penn now).  I love molecules.  But I have never in my life learned about how they break down into little quarks.  I have not had time to absorb quarks, their little charges, the way they are named up, down, charm, strange, top, and bottom, or think about how there is actually something a little smaller than them.  Where have I been?  I am not a moron.  The art world has officially swallowed me.

PS - I really have heard of quarks, but I have never actually studied them.  Bla.


Absolutely sinful.

A few weeks ago for FHE I decided that I wanted to make caramel popcorn.  Well, I had to pop the kernels over the stove and it didn't go over very well.  I burned pretty much every batch I tried to make, got frustrated, and eventually just made the caramel popcorn anyway (although burned and disgusting).  The next morning I tried three or four times to make good popcorn.  It never worked.  So, when I got home from Argentina I decided I would make good caramel popcorn.  My Mom and I worked on it until we got it right.  And it was so good.

(Not really) Caramel Sauce:
1 1/3 c sugar
1/2 c karo syrup
1 c butter
1 tsp vanilla

Mix until melted and boiling, turn to low heat for 4 minutes.  Pour over large bowl of plain popcorn and mix until well-coated.  Spread over wax paper or tinfoil to dry so it doesn't cluster too much.

Oh, and, luckily this recipe is 0 calories per serving!  (Psych!)


don't cry for me, argentina (i'll be crying for you)

After a glorious two weeks here in Argentina, my trip is finally coming to a close. I have enjoyed the luxuries of hammocs and banana smoothies, free time and sleeping in, only to turn around again to start school on Tuesday. Hno. Spannaus asked me last night if I was starting to feel at home here; Becca rightly informed him that I felt at home as soon as I arrived. So, thank you familia Spannaus and Orquera, for your hospitality and generosity. Thanks Ty and Becca, for letting me crash your six-week party. Thanks to all of you "readers" for checking up on me. Thanks Argentina, for stealing my heart. I definitely needed this.
Oh and thanks to everyone for making this a great birthday, though I still grimace at the fact that my age is a palindrome for only the second time since single digits.


is that all you've got, meyer?

Okay, so, I just wanted to announce publicly that yes, I am done with the entire Twilight saga. I am somewhat bewildered that I finished so quickly, but, considering the deep, passionate love affair I had with Edward, I guess that it isn't really that surprising...




I hate cats. Usually.

Okay, so, it´s true that I hate little domesticated felines that run around houses and break into tuna cans, but, I do not hate big cats. In fact, when I was little my favorite animal was a white tiger (for a long time, and, I saw one at the BA zoo for the first time in real life the other day). Anyway, we went to the Zoo Lujan here in Argentina and it was by far the coolest zoo I have been to. Not only could we feed almost all of the animals, but, we got to ride elephants and camels and go in cages with lions and tigers and...not bears. The zoo raises these big cats from birth and ¨domesticates¨them with little puppies. Ben (from LOST) would be very proud, because these normally large and scathing predators are raised thinking they are PUPPIES. Yeah. I guess that there is some sort of seriously twisted psychology stuff involved in that. But, on the other hand, it just teaches you how much influence your surroundings and upbringing can have.
One word: C-O-O-L!



I have a terrible, horrible, confession. I'm sure most of you know that I am too proud and stubborn to get involved in utterly trendy books and movies. I have only read the first three Harry Potter books--long before anyone else knew they existed. Then the whole world caught on, and I decided that I wasn't interested in reading the rest of them. Partly because I have never really had enough time to lose an entire day to a book I might become a slave to since they really became popular, and partly becuase I am, well, stubborn.

Well, here in Argentina things have been a little different for me. I have time on my hands--an utterly beautiful and long-lost novelty. I can stroll around the block for fun, to look at houses if I want to. It's weird. Well the first days here were spent in Buenos Aires and I still wasn't really vacationing because I was prancing around the city trying to catch everything before I left for the suburb. Now I am in the suburb, and I should be bored but I'm not. Our first morning here I was checking my email and Becca sat Twilight next to me as she strolled into the kitchen. I huffed at her as she said, "One chapter won't kill you." How ironic those words turned out to be. I am in the hype, losing sleep and sanity over Bella, Edward, and Jacob (who I hate desperately)'s story. I like the first one the best (I am on number three. I started three days ago). I am in the midst of a huge trend. Knee-deep. And, though I would normally cower at the thought of such uncharacteristic behavior, I am proud to say that I have some free time, am doing some free reading, and am going out to the hammoc Hno. Spannaus bought in Paraguay yesterday to read some more. So shoot me.

(PS - While I do shudder at some of the more "technical" aspects of Meyer's writing, I have to give her props because I haven't been this absorbed in a story since I woke up sweating from nightmares involving me running around avoiding Raskalnikov while reading Crime and Punishment. My heart flutters, my stomach flops, and I get butterflies when Edward is around. That's enough for me).


encontre a mi corazon en argentina

So, I am going to post a few pictures (the uploading takes a while on this computer) and I am going to give hardly any explanation. Basically all you need to know is that these pictures are from Buenos Aires in general and the zoo there (which Tyler and Becca posted about, so you can read more about it there). Anyway, this place is magical. I could easily live here for ten or fifteen years as long as I got to eventually go home to my free country. Then again, maybe I could stay here forever if I could learn to speak better in vos...

I love this shot. No doctoring.

La familia Orquera. They were high school sweethearts, he waited for her on her mission. I love them.

Tango in downtown BA.

Outside the Orquera's apartment.

Apparently Tyler has been waiting his whole life to see a Tapir.

We bought animal food for 3 pesos or something and this monkey caught biscuits when we threw them at him.

This is the OCD apartment I was talking about. I'm in love.