Showing posts from 2005

2005 Year in Review Survey

This is a Christmas present a friend of mine sent me because he knows how much I love filling out forms (thanks Mike!). And I have to say that this is one of the better survey things i've filled out. Anyone else interested in filling it out is welcome to, I love reading them just as much as I love filling them in.

2005 Year in Review Survey

1. What did you do in 2005 that you'd never done before?
I saw the Rolling Stones in concert, and I played bass (in front of people)

2. Did you keep your new years' resolutions, and will you make more for next year?I dont think I made any new years resolutions, and the only one I really have for this year is to try to be more productive.
3. Did anyone close to you give birth?

4. Did anyone close to you die?no.
5. What countries did you visit?
Does the USA count?

6. What would you like to have in 2006 that you lacked in 2005?
An acceptance letter from UMD, and a new hobby

7. What date from 2005 will remain etched upon your memory, and why?

Non-Pop Music

I absolutely love classical music. (I use the word classical here to refer to non-pop music... just like I use the term pop music to refer to non-classical music. Classical music really refers to a specific period of time --which Mozart is part of but Tchaikovsky is not-- but most people dont use the word in that sense). However, I am pretty picky when it comes to what classical music I love.

1. Beethoven- I am definitely in the majority here. I have yet to meet someone who is like "eh, I dont care for Beethoven," and if anyone does say that, they dont know what they are talking about (and most likely they listen to country music... haha). The unfortunate thing about Beethoven is that since his music is so great it tends to be overplayed. I mean, everyone knows the 5th symphony (da da da DAAAH), but my favorite part of the 5th symphony is actually the 2nd movement, which very very few people know. I had never even heard it until a few years ago, but I instantly fell i…

My Brain Pattern

Your Brain's Pattern
You're a simple thinker, and this is actually a very good thing.

You don't complicate matters when you don't have to.

You look for the simplest explanation or solution, and you go with that.

As a result, your mind is uncluttered and free of stress.
What Pattern Is Your Brain?
Your Irish Name Is...
Zaira Dunne
What's your Irish Name?

Quotes on Art

I really enjoy what artists have to say about their art, or just what they have to say in general. Here are some interesting insights. (I always meant to post this, but I think i forgot about it... if I have posted it before, sorry).


Why should I try to imitate nature? I might just as well try to trace the perfect circle.

Besides if you're trying to find something, it means you haven't got it. And if you find it simply by looking for it, that means it's false.

~Pablo Picasso~


If objective vision were possible, it would give us a true image of reality.
~Piet Mondrian~


The feat of superbly imitating a muscle, as Michelangelo did, or a face, as Raphael did, created neither progress nor heirarchy in art. Because these artists of the 16th century imitated human f…


So in music, there are these things called "overtones." I learned a lot about them in my undergrad years... how they helped shape and develop music because of the consonances and dissonances they create, how certain instruments (brass for example), use the overtone series to create their pitches, and how subtle they are. Many, many, many times a teacher would play a low C on the piano to demonstrate the overtones. "Can't you hear them?" they would say. And some of the class would strain their ears and reluctantly answer "oh yeah" and then the teacher would say something like "no you cant, you have no idea what I'm talking about." A few times I was one of those straining students, most of the rest of the time I would zone out. Towards the end of college I actually thought I finally could hear the overtones, but really I think my mind was making them up just so i wouldnt feel so inadequate. I mean, I know a lot about overtones, the …

I love vocab

Damn the GREs and their big fancy words.

I was going to write more, but I think that says it all.

Watch This

This is awesome (better still if you see the movie).

So long and thanks for all the fish!

Oh no

This must have been a slow weather-news day.


I hope FEMA is prepared to handle this one, there's no telling how many sensitive-outdoor-plants-left-uncovered casualties we'll have.

Funny Stuff

Check this out: SmitHappens- Press Your Luck Video!

And then when you are done with that, check this out: Mitch Hedberg Videos

Test time

So first thing tomorrow morning I am taking the GRE.

I began studying for this mid-June (off and on). At first I was incredibly intimidated by the math section (for starters I forgot that negetive numbers even exsisted), but after doing some review most of it came back to me. My biggest problem now is probably that I'm still a little on the slow side when it comes to solving problems, but other than that I think I've got the math section as good as I need it. The verbal section worries me for only 1 reason... VOCAB. If it was all reading comprehension, I'd be fine. I understand what I read. No problems there. But i do not use GRe level vocabulary and honestly I really didnt feel like learning it for this test. I did anyway, at least I made an effort to familiarize myself with some of the words. I got a study book from the library that had 2 lists of vocab words: 1- the 50 words most frequently used, and 2- the 3,000 words most frequently used. Anyone else see a …

My true feelings on accompanying

So accompanying went pretty well on Sunday. I played TONS of wrong notes, but still managed to get through it (mostly thanks to all the other instrumentalists who covered up all my wrongness). It wasnt as painful as I thought it'd be. It does get a little easier every time I do it, but that doesnt mean I'm in any kind of hurry to do it again. I would rather play 10 solo recitals than 1 accompaniment kind of thing. There's just way way way too much pressure. I mean, when I'm by myself and I make a mistake, I can recover how ever I want. I can try to disguise it and move on, I can retrace a little bit, or whatever. The worse thing that happens is I make myself look bad. And I'm okay with that. Accompanying however, is very different. I have to make sure I dont cause other people to look bad when I make mistakes, and that is far far far more difficult and stressful. And i had a horrible experience the first time I accompanied someone... I still dont think I'm comp…

Yay for Forms

Don't ask why, but I absolutely love filling out forms, so these are a treat for me!

1. Sleep with or without clothes on? with
2. Prefer black or blue pens? black
3. Dress up on Halloween? no i dont really like halloween
4. Like to travel? of course
5. do you like some one? yep
6. Does he/she know? i sure hope so
7. Who sleeps with you every night? matt
8. Think you're attractive? i guess i'm ok
9. Want to get married? i am
10. Who? matt
11. Are you a good student? I was, i love school
12. Are you currently happy? yes because I am filling out a form!
13. Have you ever cheated at a game? solitaire, all the time
14. Birthplace? crailsheim germany
15. Christmas or Halloween? christmas
16. Colored or black-and-white photo? black and white
17. Do long distance relationships work? they can
18. Do you believe in Astrology? no
19. Could you date a good friend? yes
20. Do you believe in love at first sight? not really
21. Do you consider yourself the life of the party? not even close
22. Do you drink? o…

Catch Up

Man I havent posted in a while. I didnt realize how long it had been. Probably because there are usually like 1 or 2 times a day when something happens and I think "hey, that'd make a good blog entry," so I write one up in my mind with the intention of transfering it to the computer later, but I never make it that far. So it actually feels like I've been maintaining my blog, but I guess it's about time for me to put in an actual post.

So a lot has been going on here. I keep myself pretty busy these days. I had my 1 year anniversary of teaching piano at home a week ago (I took the day off... it also happened to be my birthday and my husband took me to atlantic city). My little business has come a long way in a year. It took me about 2 months just to get 1 student. Now I get about 10 calls a week for potential students, not too bad. Unfortunately thats all going to end soon... but for a good reason. Anyway.

This weekend I am sub-accompanying at church. Sub-…

Moment of Nothing

I dont have much to say. At the moment I'm in between piano students. My next one could be here any minute. Just thought I'd pop into my blog for a sec and see if anything was new. It's not.

Random Thoughts on a Sunday

I tend to get car sick, but only if I do certain activities. Which can make road trips very boring for me because the following activities make me nauseous... reading, chewing gum, eating most food. One thing that makes me feel better is eating nice cold fresh fruit. Which is hard to come by at greasy rest stops. But I still like traveling.

If I could, I'd wear flowers in my hair everyday.

I'm not a very picky eater. I'm willing to try just about anything. Actually the only food I absolutely refuse to eat (without having tried) is tofu. I think I'm more open-minded about food than most people. But I am kind of snobbish because I'm very picky about the quality of my food.

Biting Bugs

I went to one of my husband's softball games on Monday night. I think I set a record for most bug bites recieved in 1 day. Actually I was only outside for like 2 hours. But I got 37 bugbites. Most of them (25) are on my right foot. The rest of them are on my left foot and left hand. Luckily I dont think they are from mosqitos, so the bites are pretty small. But that doesnt make them less itchy... they are driving me crazy.

I know what happens at the end of Book 6

I finished the Harry Potter books at 10:30 Wednesday morning. I read all of them (except Book 2, which I havent been able to get a hold of yet) in 1 week and 5 days. Well within my goal. Yay me!

My overall assessment of the books: They are fun to read. Books 1 through 3 have a somewhat similiar plot line... Harry is at home in normalness, then goes to school where he gets himself involved in some mystery. He is suspicious about certian people who he thinks are involved, but then you find out at the last minute it's really the "last" person you would have expected (under the influence of Voldermort of course). Harry defeats them and then returns home at the end of the year. Books 4-6 change some aspects of this plot line, in that now you see the bigger picture of what is really going on with Harry. So I think those were a little more interesting. But still, these books wont change your life, but they are entertaining.

The one problem with reading that much Harry…

Harry Potter

I recently decided I would read all the Harry Potter books. I dont know what made me decide this. I've already seen the first three movies, and honestly, I didnt care for them much. The first one, I thought, was all effects and visual distractions but lacked any real substance or logic. The second one seemed to be built on the same concepts. The third one got a little more interesting... but then that could just be because of my husband's influence. Apparently he didnt dislike it as much as the first because he said the story made more sense, But I think Gary Oldman's appearance had a big influence on his change of heart. But I think what really got me interested was the fact that I heard something bad or at least suprising happens at the end of the sixth book. And I actually want to read it and find out about it that way before I find out any other way (please dont tell me what it is... I'm this close to finding out on my own). Of course I couldnt just start…


"Which Starbucks Drink Are You?"

Starbucks Coffee
That sounds about right.

A Day in Boston

This weekend my husband and I took a trip up to New England. We went to Connecticut with his parents for a family wedding on Saturday. And then since we were in the area, we decided to go to a Boston Red Sox game on Sunday. (anyone who knows my husband knows how much he loves Boston sports teams... and how much that has rubbed off on me)

So first thing on Sunday we drove from CT to Boston. Since he used to live right outside of Boston we went there first. He showed me his "old stomping grounds" in Wakefield Mass, and then we drove around and made our way to Kelly's on Revere Beach.

Kelly's Roast Beef on the beach
Now I'm not from Boston (nor had I been there until last year), but even I've heard of Kelly's. Actually I'm pretty sure that I saw Rachel Ray eat at Kelly's on her $40 a Day show a couple years ago. But for anyone who doesnt know, it's a little food stand/restaurant right on the beach that makes some great fresh seafood. We both got fi…

Dessert Time

I'm in the middle of inventing my own dessert. I got in a cooking kick this evening so I went to Giant and bought some random ingredients. Then I came home, put on some music (an awesome mix tape someone made me years ago called "Jessica Sucks Punk Rocks") and literally started throwing the ingredients together... in my food processor. Eventually I ended up with a gooey mix and had no clue what to do with it. Fortunately the gooey mix tasted good; I should know, I think I've already eaten half of it. But I had to keep tasting it so I could think of something to do with it. I mean while I'm happy eating it off a spoon, I'm not sure it would go over well with other people. So after I had a sufficient sense of the taste and consistency of the gooey mix I came up with a plan on how to use it. Unfortunately I don't have the proper ingredients for the next step though, so at this moment the random gooey mix is "chilling overnight" (I figure that sound…

Cooking Craziness

So I was on a real cooking kick this week.

I made steak (for the first time) with a marinade I came up with completely on my own, and it was awesome. Well the steak was a little dry, I think I might have over cooked it a bit, but the marinade was so good I didnt even care.

I also started making real oatmeal. Not the instant oatmeal you just add hot water to, but the real stuff. I got some steel cut oats (which shockingly enough, Giant does carry) and everything. It's SO much better than that instant stuff.

Let's see... I made chicken parmisan one night. I dont want to brag too much, but I make really good chicken parmisan. So good in fact, that I dont feel the need to ever order it at a resturaunt because I can just make it at home whenever I want. Though I should say that I use my mom's recipe, so she should probably get all the credit.

That's a lot of cooking for me. But it's fun, I really enjoy it. I wish I could do it more often, and I probably would. Bu…

Good Eats

I made some awesome Granola today. I got the recipe from a show on Food Network. Seriously, I dont think people need to buy cookbooks anymore... has all kinds of recipes, it's great. Now you can even set up a person recipe box on their website (which means I dont have to print out the recipes and throw them into my "random recipes" drawer.)

I love Food Network, I wish other people watched it as often as I do. Then when I see one of my friends I could be like "hey did you see Rachel Ray last night? Wasn't that an amazing feast she prepared in only 30 minutes? I didnt think she'd be able to pull it off." and they'd be like "Of course I watched it, I never miss Rachel Ray, you know that." Alas, I am alone in my excitement.

But if anyone is interested, here are the good shows to watch: Iron Chef (NOT Iron Chef America... especially if Bobby Flay is cooking-- I dont like him after the stunt he pulled on the real Iron Chef several …

Whoa Black Betty

My husband corrected my post from yesterday... I got a couple facts wrong concerning the song Black Betty (but I still like it)

1. Mark Belhorn doesnt use it, Mike Timlin does.
2. Spiderbait isnt the original band, somone else is. Though I still like the Spiderbait version.

What can I say? I'm not perfect. Bam ba-lam

Cleaning the House Playlist

I cleaned most of the house today. I didn't really plan on doing it, but I made a really good PlayList on my iPod and it kept me in a "cleaning mood" for a long time (I think I listened to it at least 3 times today, so far). Typically I like to listen to Elvis Costello when I clean (I cant explain why), but I think it was time for a change. Here's my new Cleaning the House Playlist:

1. Black Betty Spiderbait
The real version, not the crappy remake for the Dukes of Hazard. I include this because Mark Belhorn is currently on the Red Sox injured list, but I still want to hear the song (I'd actually prefer to hear it on my iPod over hearing it announce that Mark Belhorn is about to bat... with the exception of the time he hit a home run in the game we went to).
2. Undo Me Jennifer Knapp
Just fun to sing along to (I think the whole song is actually in my range)
3. Yeah! Usher
Never did I think I'd enjoy a song that repeats one word so much.
4. It's All Over Now Baby …

Word of the Moment


Definition- friendly

Antonym- not friendly


More often than not, I read magazines from back to front. I find the articles in the back are usually more intersting and shorter. And if they are good, I might read the really long articles in the front. But if I start in the front, I always skip over the really long articles at the beginning because I dont expect them to be that interesting.

A Few Reviews

Some of my thoughts on things lately:
Batman Begins. I saw this last weekend. On the way to the theater my husband and I chatted briefly about how bad movies were lately. And even though I had heard that the new Batman was good, I was still expecting it to suck by my standards. It just seems as though all the movie-makers seems interested in lately is making the movie look good. Who cares about content; people dont think much now adays anyway. And that's what I expected from this movie. Yet I went anyway. Turns out, I was wrong. I really enjoyed the movie (even though I dont care for any of the other Batman movies). It had a good story line, and the visual effects appeared more realistic than the current trend creates them. I actually found myself thinking about half way through "wow, this is good, I'm actually enjoying it." Not something I think very often, especially with action movies. One negative... all the close-ups during the action scenes, it just makes me nau…

More artsy quotes

I wish I had heard more of this stuff earlier.

Why should I try to imitate nature? I might just as well try to trace the perfect circle.

If objective vision were possible, it would give us a true image of reality.

The feat of superbly imitating a muscle, as Michelangelo did, or a face, as Raphael did, created neither progress nor heirarchy in art. Because these artists of the 16th century imitated human forms, they were not superior to the artists of the high periods of Egyptian, Chaldean, Indochinese, Roman, and Gothic art who interpreted and stylized form but did not imitate it.On the contrary, art consists of inventing and not copying.Art must be free in its inventiveness, it must raise us above too much reality.

I was aware at that time that, for the spectator more than for the artist, art is a habit forming drug

Francis Bacon~
Any work that I like does the same to me-- it makes me see other things. It makes me aware of reality, although it may not be ver…

Happy Fourth



I'm becoming obsessed with art books... and loving it.


"Braque has always said that the only thing that counts, in painting, is the intention, and it's true."-Pablo PicassoA teacher once told me the same thing about music and it completely changed the way I listen to, perform, and think about music. And I agree with Picasso... it is true.

Word of the Moment

Jejune: 1. not interesting 2. lacking maturity 3. lacking nutrition

Used in a sentence:
I never knew the word jejune existed before today.

One of these days...

... I'm going to stop letting boots walk all over me.

Pace Wildenstein

Pace Wildenstein Here is one of my favorite websites to look through lately. It's a site for an Art Gallery in New York City. I ordered a few catalogs (actually they are more like books... and they certainly are priced more like books) from them a couple months ago, and they are great! Anyway, they have some great artwork by some modern artists as well as biographies and other information.

In addition, they have some of the later Agnes Martin paintings... one of which is currently set as my wallpaper.

Another one of my favorites is Josef Albers. I pretty much like any artwork that uses squares.

There arent many sites that I just browse through, but I always manage to find something interesting on this one.

Word of the Moment

Quixotic: idealistic without regard to practicality (after Don Quixote)


Today feels like Friday for some reason. But I'm actually glad that it's not.


Last night my husband and I saw Seal in concert at Wolf Trap. Various thoughts and observations from the show:
Seal has the best voice ever. I honestly think I could just listen to him sing the Alphabet Song for hours.Wolf Trap was packed. I mean, hardly any sitting room. All the covered seats sold out, so we had lawn seats, and let me tell you, the lawn was PACKED. Every inch of that place was covered with blankets and lawn chairs. I have only been to Wolf Trap for one other concert, and it was an opera (La Boheme... my favorite). I thought that was crowded, but this definitely trumped that.The odd thing about the crowd was the age. I mean, I know they play Seal songs on the adult contemporary radio stations, but I didn't expect the crowd to be quite as old as it was. I at least expected to see a good mix of different age groups. But I'd say that my husband and I were in the youngest 15-percentile there. About 60% of the crowd was probably in their 40s or older. There were som…

Good Day

My Mood... Alive

Under the Wave Off Kanagawa
By Katsushika Hokusai
Today put me in a good mood.

Jelly Beans and Dog Walks

Ah, I feel like I've been so busy lately, but I'm not exactly sure what I've been doing. One thing I havent been doing... updating my blog. But that's about to change.

So here are some interesting (or not so interesting) things that have happened today:

I am eating Jelly Belly jelly beans at the moment. Only the best candy ever made. I have enjoyed Jelly Bellys since I was in about third grade. I can tell the flavor just by looking at the bean, and I'm pretty sure I can name the flavor just by tasting it (blindfolded of course). Some of my least favorite flavors they've had in the past (and happily discontinued): Jalapenos and Peanut Butter. I mean, at least Peanut Butter is somewhat normal as far as flavor goes (though it made the nastiest jelly bean), but Jalapeno? I mean seriously, what the heck were they thinking. My favorite flavors (in no particular order) are: Pina Colada, Lemon-Lime, and Watermelon. The Watermelon-bean even looks like a watermelon, it'…

1 year anniversary and Morimoto

So Sunday was my 1 year anniversary! I cant believe I've been married for a year already. It went by so fast.

To celebrate my husband and I went to Philadelphia for the day. There's a restaurant there called Morimoto that we went to on our honeymoon, and we decided that we'd go back this year.

If you know my family at all, you probably know that we watch Food Network about as much as a normal family watches cartoons. On Food Network there is an awesome show called Iron Chef (not Iron Chef America-- that show is NOT awesome). It's this Japanese cooking show in which a handful of "iron chefs" compete against a challenger chef. They have 1 hour to make several dishes containing a surprise theme ingredient (usually something weird that I've never heard of) and then at the end they are judged by a panel of tasters to see who made the best dishes.

Our favorite iron chef is Iron Chef Japanese, Morimoto. A couple years ago I found out that he opened a restaurant in …


Ahh, Friday night. The work week is over. Well sorta over... not really for me though. Friday night's just arent as exciting when you have to work Saturday morning. Oh well.

I've been keeping busy. I had my first recital on Monday. It went really well. All the kids did a really great job. A few minor mistakes (to be expected), but nothing catastrophic and no one freaked out. About as good as I could have hoped for. I was really nervous going into it, mostly because I wasnt sure what to expect, especially since it was the first recital for pretty much all of my students. Of course I couldnt show that I was nervous because I didnt want my nervous energy spreading to anyone else. However, now that it's over I think it's safe for me to announce... I was nervous. But now I'm looking forward to the next recital, especially since it will be around Christmas time (which means lots of xmas music!)

Quote for the day (it came off my tea bag):
"What lies behind us and what l…


I volunteered to do this for Tom. I dont know many bloggers, so anyone else who comes across this is welcome to fill it out.

3 names I go by:
Jessica, Jess, Bebe

3 Screen-names I've had:
pianojess and fliper (only 2)

3 physical things I like about myself:
My hair, my eyes, and my hands

3 physical things I dislike about myself:
My back, my height (I wish I were about 2 inches shorter), and my arms

3 parts of my heritage:
Irish, German, and French

3 things I am wearing right now:
T-shirt, shorts, wedding ring

3 favorite bands / musical artists:
Hmm... Jars of Clay are my favorite, and 2 other ones i like (in no particular order) are: Beethoven, and Beastie Boys

3 (of many) favorite songs:
only 3??? Well I guess 3 good ones are: Something Beautiful by Jars of Clay, Sunken Cathedral by Claude Debussy, and Somewhere Beyond the Sea

3 things I want in a relationship:
honesty, love, and understanding

3 physical things about the preferred sex that appeal to me:
Eyes, mouth, body

3 of my favorite hobbies:

College Advice

Wise Advice I have received though the years. And I actually followed it.Whenever you write a paper, make sure the subject of the paper is as specific as possible. Dont write about what happened to you one day, write about what happened to you one minute. Dont write about Stravinsky's Rite of Spring, write about the premier day of the Rite of Spring. That way you can give complete and thorough details.Always go to class. Always, always, always.Get to know your professors, visit them during their office hours at least once during the semester. Even if it's just to say hi.Talk to your professors about your tests results when you get them back.Rewriting your notes is a great way to studyYou dont go to school to be something, you go to school and become something.I try to tell this to anyone I know that is in college or about to go to college. If I could only pick one of these to follow, it would definately be "always go to class."


Here is my umm... horoscope? from today. If anyone understands what this means, please let me know 1
If love were a three-ring circus, your relationship would have five rings! And ten elephants! And a couple of tigers! And at least one big top! And you wouldn't charge admission, and all visitors would get free popcorn.
On second thought, I probably dont want to know.

Post Ems(hide)For the record, I think that horoscopes serve entertainment purposes only... which seems to be especially true today.

Weapon of Choice: Dewey Decimal System

Things that have happened today:

It takes my sister a million years to make decisions. um..... um..... um.... (do that a few thousand more times and you will know how i feel). Yet I still have fun with her anyway. After all she did teach me the Cotten-Eyed Joe dance today-- or at least her variation of it. We kinda made up whatever parts she couldnt remember.

My brother loves My Heart Will Go On by Celine Dion. He has it on his iTunes and it's one of the very few songs he's rated.
He gave it stars. Ahh, my brother.

My friend, known as TubaSteve, told me they make a Librarian Action Figure. And he owns it. I find this very amusing. Ha Ha Ha, comes with "amazing shushing action." TubaSteve rocks!That's all I have to say for today.

Yay for Sunshine

Finally the sun came out. I was getting very sick and tired of all the raininess. When it's gloomy outside I get very groggy and have a hard time being productive, but that changes if the sun is out. So I'm glad it's back... means I get more work done.

Time Waisting Website for the Day: Am I Blue or Not?

Season Finales

It's that time of the year again... Time to wrap up all my favorite shows in the season finale week. Here are my take on them:

My Wife and Kids (from last week): I love this show. I think the cast is hysterical (except for that little brainiac kid who's just plain annoying). It's one of those shows that I never want to miss, yet seems as though not many other people are watching. So for this season finale the big shocker was (duh duh duuuuh) Jay gets pregnant. Which I suppose is a good way to end a season, definitely makes me want to watch next season. The only problem is that the surprise was TOTALLY given away in the previews. Not in a subtle way either, it was very blunt and caused me to have a "so what I already knew that was going to happen" moment at the end of the show. That being said, it's still a hilarious show and I cant wait for next season.
24. By far my favorite show to watch. And this finale was no exception. I was surprised because the show ende…