Portfolio site is back!

So after an extended period of being offline (a few months), my design portfolio is back! I’m still not completely happy with it because I haven’t edited the styles yet, so it’s a lot more plain than what I usually like.  The rollover effect on the circles is pretty cool though. Here’s the link to my portfolio, if you want to try it out for yourself.

There really isn’t anything new added to it (aside for some photos).  The theme is called Customizr by nikeo, which is a pretty full featured responsive WordPress theme. Figuring the domain stuff for this site kind of kept me up late, which is the only reason I’m up right now blogging about it.

I was thinking of adding a page for video, but I’m not sure any of my personal projects are worth showing off. The lack of new design work just shows I either haven’t focused on it or I haven’t felt any recent work was that interesting. Getting this site back online was more me trying to figure out how to have all my sites hosted in one web host (though a couple of my domains are registered through another provider).

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August: the month of babies and birthdays

This month, many people I know are either having a baby or birthday (because 9 months ago is the December winter break time – perfect time to make a baby). My manager just had her baby and another close friend is due in a couple weeks. So many people I know have been having babies, it’s not even funny. I have attended a couple baby showers this year since my friends going through big changes is always important to me.

A lot of people I know have also been getting engaged or married, though I can’t expect to attend those events when I hardly keep in touch with most of these people except on Facebook. Anyways, life hasn’t changed much for me lately. I’ve gotten bored of my job and my home life gets worse by the day. This is due to illness mostly and an obvious lack of understanding on why it gets worse. This is a problem without any clear solution, so I will try not to dwell on it too much. Hope is not for reserved for those who are unwilling to change.

Aside from that, a new Fall BRMC tour has been announced! Not everyone is happy with this set of dates, but more and more keep being added including a couple dates in New Zealand (unfortunately close to my birthday). According to the New Zealand Herald: “They’ll be playing at Bodega in Wellington on Tuesday, November 19 and at The Powerstation in Auckland on Wednesday, November 20. Tickets on sale August 15, see muchmoremusic.co.nz for details.”

Anyways, the sad fact is no one I know seems to have the money and/or time to travel very far and I still haven’t renewed my passport (which expired a couple years ago). I won’t go on too much about why I am missing out as you never know if the shows are going to be streamed or filmed so you’re practically there. There are plenty of shows in the US that would be easier to attend, though even domestic travel seems about as unlikely as a sudden change of heart from a negative person.

Metrolink in the OC

Work has been a bit stressful to return to after several days of travel and fun with friends. I didn’t take any extra days off like I should have and I ended up having to take several half days and entire week off to properly recover and figure out what’s going on in my brain. Obviously, shows and traveling are a lot of fun, but work is a requirement to sustain such habits. The nice thing about my current job is the flexibility of having a day off and sometimes working offsite. The down side is that sometimes riding a train to work means you are stuck waiting for it when it breaks down, hits someone, or there’s congestion.

Metrolink is normally pretty reliable and they do the best with the resources available. They people are generally nice even than Amtrak and I have no complaints specifically about them. My main concern is partly the hours being so limited to commuting. There’s no way to just go up late at night and come back like on Metro Rail, so you’re stuck either driving and parking or taking it up and waiting for a ride back – which is kind of a pain in the neck. Maybe OC people don’t want to work in LA if it requires driving there, but also if they already plan to work late, it doesn’t help to not have a car.

Orange County is a place that you can’t really go many places without a car, and buses are even less frequent here than in LA. It is nice that you usually feel safer in most of LA, but you end up being too comfortable and just wasting time and money. I’m guilty of both of these things and I hate when I do, but for some people it’s a way of life. The parts of LA I’m usually are usually pretty safe, though odd things happen all the time and you never know when some weird dangers are afoot. I’d rather not stay home all the time, but on the other hand, feeling paranoid is bad too.

I’m not sure where I’m going with this post as I was going to talk about something else entirely, I just thought I’d air my feelings and see if Metrolink might consider extending their hours so driving wasn’t a requirement all the time. Why else do they need to continually increase fares? (Some of those weird incidents always seem to include a person being struck by the train or copycat incidents soon after).

Red Thread of Fate

redthreadLast week, after many years – I re-watched an anime series called Tenchi in Tokyo. In interesting part of the story was the inclusion of the red thread of fate (a.k.a. red string of fate). “According to this myth, the gods tie a red cord around the ankles of those that are to meet one another in a certain situation or help each other in a certain way.” This is the Chinese version of it, the Japanese version has it around their little finger – which is how Tenchi in Tokyo depicted it.

Relationships are not easy and they don’t always last. For years, it seemed like no one in my life would ever stick around long enough to get to know me or would be my friend. And for years, I felt that I had no friends. When I did start making friends again and losing them, I decided that I can’t be friends solely by the fact that some people happened to be in the same place at the same time. There has to be something else that keeps them in my life. With the internet, people can stay connected over long distances better – though there are other things that bond people together. Perhaps these are the red threads that we don’t see.

 

2013: The Road Ahead

My life has gotten into a nice routine where the annual events I’m looking forward to in the summer are expected and are combining with the rarer events (BRMC tour/new album) to make for an extremely busy year. I’m going to attend Anime Expo and Evo again this year in July, all the BRMC shows in California (late April and early June) and the one in Las Vegas (late May). The way the California and Las Vegas shows are split up could probably end up with a lot more road travel than usual.

Alice + Olivia BikeI also recently got a very awesome Alice + Olivia bike from the Nieman Marcus + Target collection and I will attempt to ride it soon. This will only be around the neighborhood for occasional exercise, but I am excited to finally have a bike after many years of not riding one. My very first bike was a Strawberry Shortcake bike with training wheels and a white basket in front.  My new bike also has a basket, but it’s also very tall and super cute and colorful. The tall part worries me because I’m not tall and I haven’t ridden a bike in years.

The white tires also worry me because they would get dirty pretty easily, but I guess there’s not point in switching them out. I found a great deal on a dual suspension 21 speed bike for my boyfriend and so we will be enjoying some rides together around my neighborhood soon. Even at 70% off the original $500 price of my bike, his was still half the price of mine.  Though the great deal was 47% off through Amazon which is why I was so eager to get it.

Other plans for 2013: eat better, exercise more, read more, learn more, and the usual stuff. If you are interested in seeing my 2012 Year in Blogging, here’s the link: http://jetpack.me/annual-report/22760253/2012/

 

A thousand thanks to A1000x and Jack Usegi!

On May 20th, I got an email saying I’d won an iPad 2 – which usually sounds like it’s too good to be true. I realized it was legit prize from a Facebook contest I’d entered. The contest was held by a company based in Hawaii called A1000x – which was started by a 16 year old named Jack Usegi.

Part of the purpose of A1000x to encourage and support artists in his community, and they go one step further and even donate part of their profits to charity. It’s a worthy business model that I hope is also profitable for them. I just received the iPad and some a1000x swag last week and I love them all.

To protect my new iPad 2 – I got a cool Grifiti Dootle case (looks a little like a hardcover sketch book), which I found to be a lower priced alternative to the Dodocase. I’ll add pictures of the case soon. I’ll probably add my A1000x stickers and others that I like to it soon!

Free WordPress Themes!

Something that makes WordPress very popular among websites and businesses is the abundance of free themes. That’s one of the main reasons I started and continue to use it. I was pretty happy with Mystique Extend, but I couldn’t get the sliding header to work on it too well. I found many posts on Hong Kiat’s blog about free WordPress themes and this one about 30 Free Professional WordPress Themes made me want to try them all out, which I practically did (though it was more like 10-15 that I tried out). I’ve chosen to go with UpStream for now, which sort of reminds me of my previous theme Breaking News – though I haven’t added any ads to this one and I’m not sure if I will. What initially drew me to find the themes was an article on 40+ Responsive WordPress themes, though none of those seemed to look good to me with this blog.

It would be nice to find a responsive theme, but for now I can just re-enable my WPTouch plugin…

UpStream [ Preview – Download ]

upstream