May the Fourth Be With You

DSC_0444

Okay, so this is a day late because I was having SD card issues, but I still have to share, because it was a super easy, and fun little project!

I recently received some vinyl from Angelcraft, and I am IN LOVE! (If you want a huge pack of colors, order here:  Angel Crafts 6″ x 12″ Self Adhesive Vinyl Sheets (35 PACK)…)

I had to find some project so I could test them out, of course, and since yesterday was May the Fourth, I thought what better than a Star Wars project?!

Step 1

I found this awesome silhouette online:

 

Sorry, all I have is the direct link to the image! Not sure where it came from, unfortunately. 😦

Step 2

I had to split them up into different images to upload them to the Cricut software. Basically, I just cropped them into their own images each, then used the Cricut tool to delete the background.

Step 3

Once I had my page ready on the Cricut software, I loaded up the fabulous Angelcraft vinyl, and cut!

DSC_0449

Step 4

Weed & apply to the frame using transfer vinyl for best results. You’re done! I used a black background for mine, because it looked great on the image I found, so I stuck with it. It was extremely hard to get a photo without reflection, so it looks better in real life!

DSC_0462

I might end up painting my frame… I’m not fond of the blue, but it really doesn’t look so bad. White or brown would probably go better, though.

Anyway, I am SUPER pleased with this Angelcraft Vinyl! I figured it couldn’t hurt to try since I received it at a way discounted price, but I would buy this over and over again at full price. It came well packaged (unlike some vinyl that you can purchase off of Amazon, which is usually in rolls or sometimes bent 12×12 sheets. I hate when my vinyl is bent!), and I was surprised at how many sheets 35 is. That’s a LOT of colors! Just look!

DSC_0443

I especially love the metallic silver and gold. I’ll have to share when I figure out what I’m going to do with those beauties!

For a better look, see my video here:

 

Advertisements

How I Quit Coffee and How Much Better I Feel

I’ve been addicted to caffeine for probably a few years now, and I never second guessed it until about a month ago. I have been dealing with TMJ pain for about two years now, and I am beyond sick of it.  I am genuinely in constant pain.  I wake up and can’t yawn without a shock of pain in my left ear/jaw. I can’t eat an apple or corn on the cob (both things I LOVE).  Jogging sometimes agitates it, and massaging it doesn’t help.  I purchased a bottle of 750 ibuprofen at the beginning of this year because I knew I would use it all before the expiration date.  Like the rest of the world, I looked up solutions to my problem online and found out that caffeine can play a role in your TMJ pain.

I started quitting caffeine about three weeks ago, and here’s what I took away from that experience:

1. Research your reason for quitting to see other peoples’ experiences & tips.

I found a few people on forums and blogs that mention quitting caffeine because it can influence the clenching of muscles, which is obviously the opposite of what you want for sore TMJ muscles.  I’ve since found some mixed reviews on whether it actually helps ease the pain, but it was worth a shot.

To finish off the TMJ part of this story, I’ll sum it up like this: quitting caffeine did pretty much nothing to ease my pain. BUT it did make me feel like a healthier human being! In any case, reading other people’s stories kept me going strong in my resolve to quite coffee, so it was worth researching.

2. Start the process of quitting.

I can think of only two options for quitting, but correct me if I’m wrong: cold turkey, or weening.

If you’re okay with the caffeine headaches for a couple of days, or aren’t too terribly reliant on caffeine, then by all means, enjoy that chilly fowl. I, on the other hand, could not handle the cold turkey method.

If you’re a person who drinks more than one cup of coffee per day, every single day, I highly recommend easing off, and not just quitting cold turkey.  I decided to quit caffeine on a Friday night, which meant Saturday would be day 1.  I got about 4 hours in before my head was splitting, so it was time for one of those refrigerated sugary “coffee” drinks from the grocery store, regardless of how gross I find them, just to get through the day.  I had one cup of coffee Sunday, then a tiny bit less than one cup on Monday.  Tuesday I had a half a cup of coffee, and Wednesday I had maybe a third cup.  Thursday I had a chai tea latte, and then I cut myself off entirely. I felt spacey on Friday and over the weekend, but by the following Monday, I was alright!

3. Feel the benefits.

Like I said, Friday through Sunday of that first week of quitting, I felt terrible. I just wanted to nap all day.  But after that I felt just the same as I did when I was drinking coffee before, only now I didn’t need to drink the coffee to get going! Before, I would wake up groggy and stay slightly grumpy until I had my morning cup ‘o Joe.  Then later I would be unable to concentrate on anything until I had my afternoon caffeine fix.  Now I wake up fairly alert, and I only need to drink water all day! I’m so hydrated, it’s silly.

4. The downsides?

One: I have no idea why, and this might not be something that happens to everyone, but I am seriously always thirsty! I have been drinking so much water, it’s not even funny. I’m pretty sure I  had to pee a good 4 times in the last two hours of work today because of how much water I drank today.

Two: I actually miss the taste of coffee. That’s it. There’s no story to go along with it, other than that I bought and tried decaffeinated coffee, and it’s just not the same. I’ve switched to fruit juice for something to drink aside from coffee.

 

Overall, I definitely have to say the benefits have far outweighed the downsides. I have been three weeks free of coffee. I’ll drink a chai tea latte once a week if I’m feeling super tired on a Wednesday or I just feel like a treat, but I haven’t had an actual full cup of anything loaded with caffeine in THREE WEEKS. That’s the longest I’ve gone since I was probably fourteen years old.

I’m most excited to go on vacation week after next and NOT need to drink coffee to get started enjoying each day.

I’d love to hear about your experiences quitting caffeine, and feel free to ask me any questions you have. Quitter2

Well I tried.

So I attempted to take some night photos of Eugene for the first time… 

They turned out fairly meh but here they are nonetheless.

I figured out why they’re so meh, though. It’s because I needed a tri-pod! I got one from a second-hand store down the street and it seems to work pretty great, so I’ll be taking some new, hopefully better photos soon, so as to show how pretty Eugene actually is!

Image

 

Awesome theater that I’ve never been to.

 

 

 

 

 

Image

 

Eugene Hotel is an old people’s home 🙂

Image

 

This is apparently an amazing pizza place that I have yet to try.

 

 

Image

 

The empty streets of a week-night in Eugene.

A day in the life of insurance

In case you were wondering what I do for a living, I have an extremely monotonous career at this time in my life. Insurance.

Today at work, I wrote up at least 7 different versions of the same request for proof of insurance for ONE homeowner’s policy, and lots and lots of calls out. 

Finally, after a very long day I was able to relax with my boys (man and dog) and go on a nice walk at a new place. 

This is Dorris Ranch:

ImageImageImageImageImageImageImageImageImageImageImageImageImage