Thursday, April 30, 2009

Nilla Fifty-Three

I'm pretty sure that I've posted this photo of Nilla before, somewhere on the blog but...I'm feeling too lazy to download new photos off my camera...that and I'm totally engrossed in watching NBA playoff games right now...and I'm helping Missy stuff TOFU BABY plush dolls. So, enjoy this picture of Nilla doing what she does best...

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Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Punks Not Dead

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This past Sunday we finally got to get dessert at PUNKS ICE CREAM SHOPPE, in Baden, Pennsylvania. Every time we've gone up to visit Pittsburgh it's always been during the dead of winter, and Punks was always boarded up during their off-season. Ever since I first saw their sign, I've always imagined an ice cream parlour manned by mohawked, leather-clad-and-studded PUNK ROCK KIDS. Turns out that "Punk" is the name (or nickname?) of the middle-aged lady proprietor of the ice cream shoppe! Punk was busy running her shop solo when we got there, working her way through a steady line of customers:

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I wanted to try the "PECAN BALL", but they had run out. Turns out that the pecan ball is their most popular item and we had gotten to Punks a little too late. My "plan-B" was a concoction simply called DIRT: chocolate vanilla swirled ice cream mixed with crumbled Oreo cookies, hot fudge, several Gummi Worms, topped off with home-made whipped cream and a couple of cherries:

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Missy struggled with one of the Gummi Worms...the cold ice cream stiffened the candy a good bit:

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On the way home yesterday, Missy's VW BUG broke down as we were driving through BECKLEY, WEST VIRGINIA. We were cruising down the 19, and I was driving...all of a sudden I noticed that the power steering went out and then the "check engine" light came on. I managed to get the car into the parking lot of a WAL-MART. The mechanics there couldn't help us repair the car, but they could tell us what was wrong: the serpentine belt was gone. Missy called TRIPLE A (don't leave home without it!) and the tow truck driver told her that he'd be there in about 30 minutes. The both of us nodded off while waiting in the car:



After about 45 minutes, the tow truck arrived. Missy and I sat in the air conditioned cab while the driver loaded the Beetle onto the flatbed. We admired the HEAVY METAL decor on the dashboard:


The driver took us to a garage located next to another Wal-Mart a couple miles down the road. The mechanics at the garage told us that the alternator gave out, causing the belt to fall off. Luckily, the alternator, which was replaced about a month ago, was still under warranty. We only had to pay for a new belt and labor. Missy and I patiently sat in the waiting room while the car was being worked on:



The whole ordeal set us back about 4 hours. We ended up getting back to Athens at exactly midnight last night...


Sunday, April 26, 2009

Weekend Wind-Down #53 - Dark Side Edition

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Yesterday we headed out to THE ANDY WARHOL MUSEUM to check out the VADER PROJECT. We got there early so that we could play LEGO STAR WARS on a Nintendo Wii that they had hooked up in their theater. Little did we know that it was actually a video game competition! Each participant had 5 minutes to accumulate as many points as possible. The top three winners were promised prizes. Me, Missy, and her brother Joe signed up to play and we called Missy's other brother, Greg, to hurry up and get to the Warhol. Greg is a bit of a video game wiz, and if anyone could win this competition, it would be Greg:

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VADER 3444 from Raoul de la Cruz on Vimeo.

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Greg arrived at the very last minute and we yelled at him to hurry up and sign up for the competition. Sure enough, Greg beat out everyone with his high score and won the first prize: a set of YODA CHRISTMAS LIGHTS!

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Afterwards, we walked around the museum a bit, checking out the other exhibits before winding our way down to the Vader Project. Photography was "strictly prohibited", so I was not able to take too many interesting photos:

VADER 3454 from Raoul de la Cruz on Vimeo.

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We finally made it down to the Vader Project...I hid in corners and behind columns, from the docent patrolling the exhibit, and was able to click off a few images:

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Missy slyly poses with her favorite piece - a DARTH VADER HELMET re-upholstered in white pleather by PAUL FRANK:

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My favorite helmet was repurposed by street artist SUCKADELIC as a TATOOINE playset for STAR WARS ACTION FIGURES. It featured a silver BOBA FETT carrying a GHETTO could I NOT love this? Unfortunately, I was only able to photograph the back of the piece:

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Afterwards, we took pictures in the vintage PHOTO BOOTH that they had in the bottom level of the museum:

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MISSY- Getting to come home for a little...
RAOUL - Vader Project at the Andy Warhol Museum in Pittsburgh.
JOHN - Seeing you guys was the high spot.
RITA - You guys coming!
JOE - When Greg won his “major award”
GREG - Winning at Lego Star Wars!
CRISTINA- I had fun going to the Warhol and looking at the exhibit.

MISSY - Getting my hours in and the shootings.
RAOUL - The shootings in Athens, definitely.
JOHN - My colonoscopy!
RITA - Going to work, ha ha ha
JOE - When I didn’t win the “major award”
GREG - My co-worker Corey moved away.
CRISTINA - Doing yardwork today.

MISSY - Greg winning the prize at the Warhol.
RAOUL - Greg beating out all the little kids in the Wii Lego Star Wars challenge.
JOHN - Waking up after the procedure and asking if the doctor found my penny!
RITA - John, when he woke up from his procedure.
JOE - When Greg won his “major award”
GREG - Watching “Step Brothers”.
CRISTINA - Watching “Electric Apricot”

RAOUL - “Bulp”
JOHN - “Tri-Lite”
RITA - “Who tied my shoes?”
JOE - “Trabagoostos”
CRISTINA - “If you see any spiders that look like trantulas, don’t be alarmed. They’re just wood spiders”

MISSY - I liked the pizza. And the fries. And the burger.
RAOUL - BBQ pulled seitan sandwich at Double Wide Grill, Southside, Pittsburgh.
JOHN - That last pickled egg from Easter.
RITA - The pizza from A-Z-Z-something...
JOE - I lilked the potato tacos at the Double Wide Grill.
GREG - Double Wide, shrimp burrito.
CRISTINA - Azzeria Pizza.

MISSY - Yoda...cuz he’s a puppet.
RAOUL - Hands down, Admiral Ackbar.
JOHN - Jabba The Hutt.
RITA - Yoda.
JOE - I guess Darth Vader this week...
GREG - Han Solo.
CRISTINA - Chewbacca.

MISSY - That one guy that I got as kid with an egg-shaped helmet. I didn’t want him as a figure and I got him.
RAOUL - Young Anakin Skywalker...”ANNIE”
JOHN - Princess Leia.
RITA - The Emperor.
JOE - Jar Jar.
GREG - Young Anakin.
CRISTINA - Jar Jar Binks.

MISSY - This American Life podcast, Tiger Trap, Go Sailor.
RAOUL - K Records mixtapes, Tiger Trap, Go Sailor, Lois, Flying Tigers, Sarah Dougher.
JOHN - Electric Apricot.
JOE - “today music”
GREG - Rentals.
CRISTINA - The Smiths.

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Nilla Fifty-Two

I almost forgot...

NILLA 3323 from Raoul de la Cruz on Vimeo.

Saturday, April 25, 2009

Heavy Metal Thunder

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So, we're in PITTSBURGH, PENNSYLVANIA right now! We took a little 12-hour road trip yesterday and now we're at Missy's parent's house. We're in town to see THE VADER PROJECT at THE WARHOL MUSEUM - the exhibition is comprised of 100 DARTH VADER HELMETS re-painted, re-imagined, and re-designed by 100 of the the nations top designers, artists, and tastemakers. The lure of STAR WARS plus the Andy Warhol Museum was simply too much for us to resist. It pulled us in much like a tractor beam pulling the Millenium Falcon into the belly of a Death Star...

The weather up here is gorgeous. We took advantage of the nice climate and took some funny pictures of Missy and her brother JOE hamming it up on the vintage Honda motorcycle he rebuilt and restored. I think Missy looks super cute in a helmet:

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The next morning, Missy's dad decided to take the motorcycle around the block for real:

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Thursday, April 23, 2009

Vote for my Fabric on Spoonflower!

Diamonds Pattern colorway 2, originally uploaded by sugar-cookie.

Hey everyone - my fabric design is up for voting on SPOONFLOWER! Please VOTE FOR MY FABRIC DESIGN and then Spoonflower will make it available for everyone to purchase from their ETSY SHOP! How exciting!

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

There's a New Girl in Town...

Please meet my newest Blythe doll! She is a Silver Snow doll that I got from my friend Jamie. I am too nervous to customize on my own, so I got this one that Jamie had already sanded to a nice matte finish. Thanks Jamie!

I already changed some of her eyes, too. This photo she has a light emerald color that I added myself.

Snow with green eyes.
This photo shows her with a pale minty green eyes that I gave her, too. I quite like this color and I don't think it looks too crazy like some forward facing Blythe eyes can look.

Milky lilac eyes!
Raoul keeps wanting me to get the glow-in-the-dark eyes for Blythe, but that is a little too out there for me. Instead I tried these milky lilac colored eyes. I painted the backs to have a pupil. They look a little crazy, but it is good to have at least one pair of wild eyes, no?

My poor new girl does not have a name yet. I need some help in the name department. I have been thinking about this for quite some time and just have not decided on the Perfect Name. Yet.