The Wedding!

I went to my cousin’s wedding yesterday and it was so lovely.  They had the ceremony at a country club that his wife’s father was a member at and I was just amazed!  I had never been to a place that fancy in my life and it was a really beautiful wedding!

I spent most of the night dancing.  It turns out his wife knew some of the people I used to hang out with in high school.  They go to community college together and are in theater!  I used to do theater in high school, not acting but as a techie.  I did built and painted sets, did props, costumes and the lighting.  One of my friends who was an actor in high school I find out now knows how to swing dance and knows the Charleston!  I haven’t danced like that in about a year and I miss it so much!! 

I went to this bar/club last year, which was small but if you show up an hour before they technically open you pay the cover charge and get an hour lesson on swing dancing and then dance the rest of the night!  It was so much fun!  I really wish my boyfriend could’ve been there with me.  I am completely determined to teach him swing dancing since he is completely incapable of dancing! lol  I’ve asked and he said he would learn, he’ll do anything to make me happy, except get rid of his dreads! lol

It was such an amazing day, seeing family I haven’t seen in a very long time and dancing and the venue was so incredible!  Sometimes I wish I could have that much money to have an amazing place like that to have my wedding, haha, but I have always planned a small one, just a few close people, nothing big.

I found out that my cousin and his wife had been dating for less than a year before getting married and that was surprising!  The way they looked at each other, you could tell they were completely in love and you can’t put a time limit on that.  She is just as quirky and offbeat as he is, not caring what others think of them and always putting themselves in the spotlight and not to mention she is just drop dead gorgeous!

I hope one day I’ll have a wedding and I know it will be just as amazing because as long as you are completely in love with the other person nothing else matters.  With the situation my boyfriend is in and his deportation, I find myself thinking a lot farther into the future in our relationship, more than I’d like to.  I like to take things slowly and its been only a year and two months since we’ve been dating and I met him for the first time just about a month before that but I’m thinking about what would we do if we got married and a source of income and where are we going to live.  I think when we get him home he’d live in Chicago with me, but he always talks about living in New Orleans because he loves it there and that worries me.  I’m excited to go to Mexico, but I want to do my nonprofit work here and I know this sounds so selfish, but I’m going to lose years in Mexico to get him home and after that I want to live in Chicago, forever with my family and my work.  It’s just so much to think about and it’s so soon in a relationship, it’s very overwhelming!

Life always throws you curveball and this is just one that I’m learning to catch.  I’m so excited fo changes in my life and I’m adapting very well, at least I hope! 😀  I’m so happy for my cousin, him and his wife look so good together and they love each other so much!  She is so sweet, I was so happy to meet her!  So congrats to my cousin and I hope he and his wife have an eternity of happiness!

Also, Happy New Years Eve to everyone!  I hope the New Year throws you curve balls that swing beautiful happiness into your life!

The Keys To My Heart

Status

I’m a pianist and I have been for almost 16 years.  I’m classically trained, though now I mostly play Hispanic music and my love was reignited as a Freshman in college when my work load decreased.  Last year and my senior year in college, my school work increase quite a bit, cutting back the time I had to practice.  Then everything that was going on with my boyfriend, there were even more complexities than just his immigration, more personal issues.  They were so stressful I just lost the joy of playing, I had no desire to, I had lost that ability to play more than just notes on a page.  Emotion is what brings music to life, not just the technical ability to play all of the notes and without that emotion, I was just a recording, not a musician.

I did find a piece that temporarily brought back my love and unlocked with my heart again, Perfume de Gardenia by Rafael Hernandez (This is the version I played here).  I found simple music and then rearranged the piece to sound like one of Hernandez’s performances.  It’s beautiful and I love playing it.  That was last winter and since then I haven’t really played anything that I loved, just what I could get through and would sound good.

I’ve always wanted to play Once Upon A December from the Disney movie Anastasia, but I could never find a version that was at my level of play.  I want it to be difficult because I want the challenge.  I finally found a version that was beautifully complex the only problem was that there was no music for it.  I do have a good ear and only  have some problems transcribing bass lines.  This piece however, would take me forever just because therea re so many notes!  There would not be any chance of me doing it myself and to pay someone to transcribe a piece, it could be over $100, which I don’t have.

Just the other day I stumbled upon someone who had transcribe the piece on Youtube.  I emailed him and asked if he could send me the music and I’d pay for it, I just didn’t have a ton of money to spend.  He only wanted $20, so I paid him without hesitation and sent me the music and I am just beyond happy.  I gave it a quick glance and it looks perfect!  I’m so beyond excited to play it!  Click here to listen to the version I’m learning.  It’s arranged by Emile Pandolfi and so incredibly beautiful!

I’m hoping that this will reignite my love of playing piano.  Maybe I can even find a piano to play in Mexico!  I wouldn’t want to buy one there, it’s too expensive and then shipping it to the states would just be awful, lol.  I can’t wait to learn this piece and I’m so glad I found it!  Piano always has the keys to my heart, so I’m hoping to unlock that love once again.

NOTE: For those of you who haven’t read my last blog. I’m searching for a couple who I saw in Chicago on December 21, 2012.  The young man proposed to his girlfriend and I was able to get some photos but didn’t think to go down and as for a contact!  I would love for them to have the photos I have of their big day!  Could you help spread the word on Twitter or Pinterest or whatever social media you use?  You can click here for the full story and one of the photos. Thank you for your help!

Must Find Soon-To-Be-Wed Couple!

On the 21st of December, the day the world was going to end my friend and I decided to go downtown to Chicago and ended up in Millennium Park.  We took so many photographs of the bean, which always seems to get so much attention for being something so simple.  Then we went to look at the ice skaters and I saw a couple on the ice just standing there.  I thought it would be so cool to get a photo of the young man proposing to his girl.

Then I looked a way for a second and felt my friend hitting me and screaming “Meggie look!”  The young man was down on his knee and cheers began erupting as skaters started to gather in a circle around the couple and I started taking photo after photo!   My friend and I were screaming which brought everyone by the bean over to the edge over looking the ice rink.  Then everything got quiet, it seemed like even the city itself quieted down in anticipation for her answer and then cheers erupted as he stood up and they kissed!  She said yes!  It was so cute!

In this midst of all this, it never occurred to me to go down there and ask them for an email address so I could send the photos I took.  I’d want someone to do that if I was getting proposed to!  The photo below is my favorite that I took. 

It hit me yesterday, why not use social media?  I have already Tweeted my request so now I turn to the blog community!  You don’t need to Tweet the entire blog, I’m not looking for views I just want this photo and my contact information out there so that if this photo does end up finding them, they can ask for the photos if they want.

I would love to find them and send them the photos I took!  So I’m asking anyone, especially if you live in the Chicago area, if you could post this on Twitter or Facebook and you can have them reach me at my email megsphotos67@gmail.com.  This took place Friday, December 21st 2012 late at night, probably sometime after 8 I’m guessing.  I know this is a long shot, but why not try?  😀

Thank you, thank you, thank you to anyone who can help me!

The ProposalI knee

Debates

The other day, I got in a political debate on Facebook.  I normally tend to avoid those things because they end up in this awful, confrontational argument rather than a civil debate of two people expressing different opinions.  There are a few people involved so we’ll start with Person 1 who is extremely against guns, no guns in the house, on the streets or available for any civilian possession.  He mentioned I believe a police officer that was shot in New York and saying this happened because average americans can have guns. 

Before I explain anything else, let me first talk about my opinion on guns.  I’m in the middle, with the idea that if someone wants a handgun in their house, then they can do what they want as long as it’s stored property or if they are hunters who have shotguns, however I think we need a better process to obtain weapons, I HATE concealed carry and people don’t need firearms that can shoot out 100 rounds in a few seconds.  The reason why I partially accept guns because I grew up around guns, my grandparents were hunters, I’ll get into that more in a bit.  I’d never want a weapon in my house, that’s for sure, but if others want it then that is their choice. 

I wrote to him that not all americans go out with their guns and kill people.  My grandparents were very responsible gun owners and respectful sportsmen.  They had their guns properly stored and locked away and their bullets were in a separate locked location.  They taught us that guns were not toys, that they were not power that one held over everyone else, you weren’t more powerful just because you carried a gun on you because they cause more trouble than good, which is why they only used theirs to hunt. 

I comment on this status and start a debate with Person 2 who is completely for guns, whether it is the concealed carry law or weapons that can fire 100s of rounds, completely opposite of Person 1.  Anyway, Person 2 and I have a really good debate, we can both express our opinions in a completely civil way, pointing our flaws in each others arguments or different ideas without it getting mean or confrontational.  For example, he said that the city has the strictest gun laws but the most crime and to me that doesn’t really make sense in comparing the city to the suburbs.  First of all, the city population is so much larger than out where we live, in the burbs.  Second, the make up of neighborhoods and the crime itself is completely different, we don’t have gang activity out here for one thing, there are some but you don’t hear about gangs in Elmhurst or Naperville or things like that, but in general, city crime is different and on another level.  It’s like comparing Chicago crime to Montana, it doesn’t make sense.  It was a really good debate though because we could point those things out about each others argument and no one got hostile.  He eve joked around saying you’d thank me about my ideas when the zombie apocalypse happens!

Then finally Person 1 comes back online and begins to talk about how we’re missing the point and people shouldn’t have guns.  Then he got into the hunting issue saying that hunting is not necessary anymore, which is a valid point and then he went on to say this “Shooting a deer or human because “it excites you” is absolutely sick”.   This comment made me very angry because to me, you can be against hunting, you can not want an animal to die and that is totally fine!  However, the average hunter is not a “sick” individual and you can’t compare killing a human to a deer, that is just beyond ignorant.  Whether it was right or wrong I took offense to this.

Many people who I’ve talked to assume hunters love this thrill of death and that is not the case.  There are some dishonorable hunters out there but many are not.  My grandparents weren’t trophy hunters and anything they killed they cleaned themselves and then ate.  They were able to provide for themselves, a thing most Americans can’t do and take for granted all that they are lucky enough to have at their fingertips. 

Also, to me its more honorable to have to work for your food and give the animal a fair chance in the wild rather than having them lined up on a farm awaiting their death.  You hear so many people against hunting because it kills animals, what about fishing?  I’ve never been hunting before, but I have been fishing and the fish I catch, if they are the right size, I kill it, clean it and cook it for dinner.  I was able to provide for myself.  I don’t fish for a sick thrill of death and my grandparents didn’t hunt for that reason either.  

What people don’t realize is that hunters, true honorable sportsmen put a lot of money into these wildlife refuges.  That’s where the money from the fishing/hunting licences go and they make donations.  Hunters respect the animals they hunt and know more about them than any average american with a no hunting pamphlet because they spend hours with them in the wild.  Our family friend Bob Torstenson, an avid hunter, donated 95,000 acres and a $4 million endowment to the Rocky Mountain Elk Foundation when he passed away.  That was in his will.  Obviously not everyone can make such a large donation.  His family business did very well, but he was a hunter that killed elk and look what he did for them. 

I know this is such a long blog, but the last thing I want to say is this is why we don’t get anywhere in debates, people turn to insults and ignorance.  It is totally fine to be against hunting!  I understand that, I’m against trophy hunting but I grew up around true sportsmen so I’m ok with hunting as long as you use the entire animal, but when you compare killing a person to a deer and say it’s for that sick thrill of death, that is just ignorant and insulting, especially when one of the people you’re debating with specifically stated she grew up around it.   These insults and ignorance is why we get no where in politics, everyone is so busy insulting each other rather than saying, well that’s not the case, here is a fact or something like that.  The next time you debate, think about that and just keep it civil and state your opinion without insulting whoever you’re debating with.  We need to get things done in this country and we can’t do that if we all act like children arguing.

Christmas!

So it’s finally here!  My favorite holiday!

In my house, Mom just love to decorate for every holiday Christmas, St. Patrick’s Day, Valentines Day, Easter, every single holiday and then there are the Spring, Summer, Winter, Fall decorations too.  We have a closet in our house just for all of Mom’s decoration and they are pretty decorations, not like tacky items littering the house.  I asked one year why she put so many up and she said she liked the way it made the house feel, how festive it looked and inviting, it was her personality welcoming those into our house, our home.  Everyone who comes over love them and I can’t wait to do that to my own place, my own home when I move out!

The entire house smells like cinnamon too! She has this little pot where she puts apple juice, cloves, cinnamon and oranges and just lets it sit there all day, filling the house with this amazing smell!  My sister love baking, something which I don’t have the patience to do, so the house smells like cookies or cake or something with apples.  She makes all these delicious foods with the apples we picked in the fall from the orchard we go to.

My favorite thing in the world though is to give people gifts!  I LOVE IT!  I spend all year listening and thinking about what to get people and then the search is on for the perfect gift.  Nothing beats the look on someone’s face that you love and care about when they open something they love!  Even when I was younger I always felt so awkward about receiving gifts, from family and friends, I would much rather just give them something! 😀  I know they get the same happiness from giving me something I love as I do them, but I would much rather never receive anything and just give.  Even when I was younger, I told my family to give my gifts to children who don’t have anything and mom pulled out our old Christmas list and I always asked Santa to give gives to those who didn’t have anything, my sister did too.

This year, one thing that I was so excited to get when I opened it was a fishbowl lens from my parents!  It’s a little daunting to have to use a manual setting every time I use it since I don’t use a manual setting that often, but I’m so excited!!  I want to use it to take photos of the city and graffiti since those are my two favorite things to photograph!

My dad’s family is going to be here in a half an hour.  I can’t wait to have everyone over!  I love when my family is all here, it’s nice at other people’s house, but it’s even better here at home.

To everyone who reads this, Merry Christmas!  I hope you and your loved ones had a lovely day today and throughout the year!

Too Pretty

Today I was going to write about Christmas because it is by far my favorite holiday for so many reasons, but I stumbled upon this article instead (here’s another link to a second article on the same issue).

The Iowa Supreme Court upheld the decision that firing an assistant for being to attractive is legal because “Such firings may be unfair, but they are not unlawful discrimination under the Iowa Civil Rights Act because they are motivated by feelings and emotions, not gender, Justice Edward Mansfield wrote” (ABC News Article). 

Not only that, her boss made INCREDIBLY inappropriate comments to her like “‘Dr. Knight acknowledges he once told Nelson that if she saw his pants bulging, she would know her clothing was too revealing,’ the justices wrote” (Yahoo News).  Honestly if my boss ever said that to me, I would file a sexual harassment complaint against him.  That is repulsive, disgusting and COMPLETELY unnecessary.  If her clothes were too tight and inappropriate for the work place all he had to do was tell her to wear different clothes.  I don’t know how she dressed, but telling her that she can tell if she her clothes are too tight by seeing “his pants bulging”, wow.  I really don’t even have words to describe how repulsive and just beyond disrespectful that is.

In the ABC News article it states that this Dr. Knight allegedly “that’s like having a Lamborghini in the garage and never driving it” (ABC News).  Women are not cars nor are they only used for sex.  If he can’t shut up and keep his vulgar sexual lusts to himself, HE should be the one that should be the one in the wrong, not his employee.  Women are not cars, women are not sexual vehicles put on the planet to thrust yourself at and make comments about how you think that in the future you would most likely have an affair.  He did when “Nelson’s husband tried to reason with Knight, the dentist told him he ‘feared he would have an affair with her down the road if he did not fire her'” (Yahoo News).  Just because he is completely incompetent and can’t control himself doesn’t mean that a Nelson is the same disgusting person he is.

The thing that gets me the most is the fact that Knight’s wife got mad at Nelson!!!!  If he was my husband, he would be kicked out and his belongings thrown in the street.  If he can’t trust himself around another women and talks about the “bulge in his pants” and how another woman is like having a fancy car and not being able to drive it, no way would he stay in my house or be a part of my life.  If my boyfriend said he thought an affair would happen if his employee stayed any longer he’d be out too.  That means her husband has so little respect for her and can’t control his lusts toward other women when HE HAS A WIFE AT HOME.  Seriously think about that!  Really!?!?! 

My boyfriend might think a model is attractive or actress and look at them.  The thing is, his eyes ALWAYS come back to me and he never lusts for another woman like that.  He might think a woman at his work is pretty, but I’M his Lamborghini, not her.  I’M the one that he desires to be with and who he finds the most attractive in the world. No other woman, in his eyes, stand up to me and I feel the same toward him.   Yes I am completely enamored with Ryan Gosling, but my boyfriend is the most attractive man in the world to me.

I do understand that the court case was regarding gender discrimination and technically he wasn’t firing her because she was a woman, just because she was attractive, however I do believe this is complete and utter discrimination just the same, except with looks not gender, just a technicality.  Not only that, he completely was outside of his boundaries when he was asking her about “how often she experienced an orgasm” (Yahoo News) and saying if she saw his pants bulging.  Who says that to someone!?!?  I feel awful for his wife too, I think she knows she can’t trust her husband and that’s why she wanted Nelson fired immediately.

I don’t even have any words to describe my feelings on this article, my blog doesn’t even cover half of my disgust.

World Ending List

Tomorrow is the end of the world.  Even if it’s not, I really don’t know how to adjust to this weather forecast, I don’t have anything to wear and I’m not sure if my auto and homeowners insurance cover asteroids.

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So considering that the world is ending tomorrow, I thought I’d write about what I love and hate about the world.

I hate most vegetable, I’ve never quite grown out of my 2-year-old self and there are very few that I’ll eat voluntarily.  I guess in general I’m a very picky eater, I’ll try almost anything unless the primary ingredient is a vegetable, this drive my family and boyfriend nuts. 

I hate Chicago winters, mainly the snow.  I like to look at snow, just not get my shoes wet or freeze or have the city put salt on the road which gets on my car.  If it would snow only on the grass and not on the roads and sidewalks, that would be better.  I can’t wash my car in the winter either and that’s one of my favorite things to do.  My car looks flawless, except in the winter when it is covered in salt and snow and dirt. -_-

I hate discrimination, anger and indifference toward people, everyone.  I don’t understand it, I don’t understand why color and gender and income level and physical appearance affect how you are treated or why that makes a difference.  I don’t understand why people are persecuted because there is a difference in their group, we are all still people.  I hate it.

I hate how it takes a horrific tragedy to bring a nation together and for the news to cover that, such a mass of people crying for the same reasons, yelling for the same reasons, being kind for the same reasons.  I think that should happen every day for our problems that happen every day of our lives and be broadcasted by the media.

I also love to see our nation come together after a tragedy, to see the support and tears and signs and candles and kind words for families and loved ones.  The idea of living in an individualistic society, controlled by Facebook and cell phones is a scary thought, but seeing how much people love each other, it’s beautiful.

I love seeing people do little things to help others or stand up for other people.  There are so many people who do this without recognition and then there are shows like “What Would You Do?” which really shows all the beautiful and strong people in this world (It’s on Youtube under WWYD and I highly suggest watching some clips, most are no longer than 6 minutes).  Then there was the Free Hug guy in Australia, Juan Mann (you can google free hugs and all the info. will come up if you don’t know about this, I think it started in 2004). 

I love waking up every day and seeing the sun or feeling the rain, the trees and grass, everything is so beautiful, even in the suburbs.

I love my family.  You couldn’t have asked for a better family, my parents and my sister are just amazing.  My parents might be strict, but they kept me in line and without that I would’ve been on a very different path in life and nothing good would have come of it.  I am capable and confident because of them and I know my entire family will always love me, flaws and all.

I love my boyfriend.  He is an inspiration in my life because I’ve seen him change his from the dangerous and destructive path he was on to the one he is on now.  He is always supporting me and I will always love him and flaws and all, just like he does me.

I love my car.  It was a gift from my parents going into college since I was living at home.  I’ve named him Jimmy and it’s not that I love him for the material aspect of what a car is, it’s because my parents gave me a beautiful gift so that I’d be one step farther ahead and less in debt when I graduated.  It was my very first set of bills to pay and my pride and joy.  I take care of him, wash him every weekend, pay for all the repairs and maintenance, this was the first thing I paid for with MY money from MY job, MY bills and MY responsibility.  I like that feeling of accomplishment

I love so many thing, this might hold the world’s record for longest blog ever if I wrote them all down a few more are: puppies, animals in general I guess, the color lime green, a good old-fashioned muscle car, drag racing, traveling, languages, cultures, arroz con pollo, pegao (my favorite snack!), car trip, wind on my skin, smiles, hugs. See what I mean? I just can’t stop!

So to everyone who reads this, happy pre-apocalypse and think of your list.  I’m sure good things out number the bad in this world.  That is always the case.  No matter how bad the world gets, there is always something good or something trying to do something good to counteract it.  Let me know some things you love and hate! 🙂  I’d love to hear from you.