Tuesday, September 30, 2014

New York: Bastion of Clean Energy!

Since the Climate March and because of Climate Week, there's been - thankfully - a lot of announcements about new clean energy initiatives and deals. In New York, two especially significant deals were announced. By NYC Mayor Bill de Blasio to reduce emissions in the city by 80% of 2005 levels by 2050, and (more practically) $100 million in funding new solar projects in New York state that will increase the total solar output by 68%. That's a lot of percent!

Isn't it nice to read some good news every once and a while?

Read more about both events at ThinkProgress.

Garfunkel and Oates: You're Such a Loser (and that's good!)

Garfunkel and Oates had their first season finale over at IFC last week. They really went out with a bang - at least if you consider a tribute to failure and why that's ok a bang, which I do, which is why I said it.

See? Being a loser means you tried, and that's a great thing. Even when you fail a lot. A solid and adorably-animated reminder for all of us losers out there.

OMG: Outlander Wedding = Outlander Hotness

If you haven't been watching Outlander, I don't blame you - it's hard to get access to Starz without a cable subscription and a very understanding significant other or roommate. But however you can swing it, get ye-self to an Outlander-y, because this show is too good to miss. I haven't watched the mid-season finale (!) yet because I'm too depressed that it's not coming back until April instead of January like we had all hoped, but last week's episode, "The Wedding" was everything a modern gal could hope and dream of in terms of sexy times on TV. Super sexy dude? Check. Multiple rounds of sexy times? Check. Plenty of story so the sexy times have a solid emotional background? Check. Female gaze? Check out the wazoo!

In case you're wondering what you missed, there are some fun recaps here (the Jezebel comments are in and of themselves very entertaining), here, and here.

Also, this:

People's Climate March: A Resounding Success!

My brother and I went to the People's Climate March in New York last Sunday. It was incredible. 400,000 people? After walking through it - I believe it. It was truly amazing to see all kinds of people from all walks of life (not just aging hippies and naive college students!) come together and support a cause we can all support. This is the defining issue of our time, and it's about time we started acting like it!

SO Happy that "The Mindy Project" is Back!

Mostly because of this (ugh I can't embed it but go to the link and watch Danny Castellano's SUPER HOT stripper dance!). Here's a sneak peek:

Um. Yes. Please. Thank you.

Also the rest of the show is super great. Great jokes. Great character stuff. Great, great, great.

Back to Danny dancing!!

Need Something to Read?

Try out some of the movers and shakers in new media from Mallory Ortberg's (herself a fabulous writer) A List of One's Own at The Toast. These writers (who, in case you didn't get the Woolf reference, are women) are doing all kinds of interesting, innovating work. Check 'em out!

"Harry Potter" Helps Teen Readers Empathize

In case you needed another reason re-read Harry Potter or gift them to your little cousins or nieces and nephews, a new study suggests reading the HP books increases your ability to empathize with different people, particularly "out groups" vs "in groups".  From the Scientific American article on the study:

For decades it's been known that an effective means of improving negative attitudes and prejudices between differing groups of people is through intergroup contact – particularly through contact between “in-groups,” or a social group to which someone identifies, and “out-groups,” or a group they don’t identify with or perceive as threatening. Even reading short stories about friendship between in- and out-group characters is enough to improve attitudes toward stigmatized groups in children. A new study published in the Journal of Applied Social Psychology found that reading the Harry Potter books in particular has similar effects, likely in part because Potter is continually in contact with stigmatized groups. The “muggles” get no respect in the wizarding world as they lack any magical ability. The “half-bloods,” or “mud-bloods” – wizards and witches descended from only one magical parent – don’t fare much better, while the Lord Voldemort character believes that power should only be held by “pure-blood” wizards. He’s Hitler in a cloak.
Intuitively, this feels right, but it's good to know it's backed by science and not just the innate yearnings of my heart.

Thus Concludes the Nail Art Extravaganza!

Told you I had a lot of stellar nail designs to share with you all! Pretty sweet deal, right? It was also fun for me because it was like a quick recap of my summer, which, all nails considered, was a pretty darn great one!

Wild Pink Leopard and Zebra Print Bachelorette Nails!

One of my best friends is getting married in two weeks, so for her bachelorette nails, I decided to go as stereotypical as possible: neon pink with black leopard spots and zebra stripes. Full-on bridal, "girl power" insanity. Fortunately, my friend is not at all like this. We ended up doing a "Murder Mystery at the MET" Scavenger hunt as our main activity so... yeah, not quite a wild, animal print bunch, which is why I thought it'd be so fun(ny). What do you think?

Fall Tree Nails with Colorful Falling Leaves

I'll admit it - I went above and beyond for this one. First off, I didn't even base this off of anyone else's design. I created it all myself out of my OWN BRAIN! Second off, I painted these beautiful little branches underneath the leaves you see there. Needless to say, my bare winter tree nails will be gorgeous. Also, check out the fun, more abstract falling leaves thumb nail. Pretty fun and super colorful, right? Go, me!

Gold Dinosaurs at Wedding: Best DIY Ever!

Also, I'd be reminsce not to post these amazing, hand-gold-spray-painted dinosaurs that decorated our friends' wedding. What a unique, classy, silly, ridiculously fun DIY thing to do! Clearly, this is why we hang out with them.

Beach Ball Nails!

Here are my awesome beach ball-slash-abstract-because-they-don't-super-look-like-beach ball nails! I did these to celebrate our good friends Max & Jess' wedding! The first photo is in front of my shower curtain because it's fanciful. The second photo is where they were married - overlooking the mighty Pacific Ocean! Beautiful! Like out of a flippin' magazine!

End of Summer Fun Color Nails!

Look how long and well-shaped my nails are here! Alas, it was not meant to be for long - I can't remember why, but I went several days after this color chipped off without anything on my nails, and I totally reverted to my habit of picking at them. That's what I always say - ABNP!

Always Be Nail Painting!

Anyway, I was also pretty bummed about summer ending, so this was my defiant last stand against the rising tide of fall.

Green-ish Gray and White Stripes and Lattice Design

Green and white lattice and stripes nails just for funskies.

Blue Ocean Nails!

I know I usually only post my nails if they have a pretty design, but isn't it such a lovely coincidence that I happened to paint my toenails that rich blue and then a week later go to the real live ocean? This is thanks to a super fun visit to Boston (the beach is Plum Island, about an hour north of the city) to visit my brother, and we were joined by my other brother and his new girlfriend. Such a great time! Summer is the best!

Emmy Nails!

These Emmy nails I did before the Creative Arts Emmys in August certainly brought us luck - my husband brought home his second trophy! Now they're flanking our TV. Pretty baller, huh? I'd like to say I contributed heavily to the win.

Hockaday Nails: Close-Up of School Crest

Here's a close-up of the Hockaday school crest. Our motto is "Virtus Scientia"

Hockaday Nails!

So you guys aren't going to understand these at first, but these nails are in honor of my high school alma mater, Hockaday, which recently celebrated its 100th birthday! Isn't that incredible? It's a wonderful all-girls school in Dallas that is super smart and totally feminist. The daisy is our mascot (Hockadaisies), the plaid is our school plaid, and the unicorn thing is our school crest! Not bad, huh?

Pink, Yellow, and White Polka Dot Nails!

I kind of had a very polka dot-infused summer this year. I also got a few new colors as you might be able to tell (this pink, the blue for the sky with clouds, the gray for the chevron, all the greens and browns, etc). I felt like this pattern on top of these colors would be very fun and summer appropriate. Honestly, I wish I had a dress that looked like this! Don't you?

Baby Nails for Shira & Adam & Ezra!

My friends Shira and Adam had their first baby in June. His name is Ezra and he's adorable. Moreover, he's the first baby my husband and I ever held (at least that I remember). He's too cute, so I did these polka dot, footprint, and otter nails to celebrate his arrival. Why an otter? Adam loves them and surely Ezra will, too.

Moon & Constellations Nails

I did these super cool moon and constellation nails before my friend Abbie - who works at NASA - came to NYC for a visit. Aren't they baller? Dippers Big and Little on the index and pinky nails, with Cassiopeia and Orion on the middle nails.

Bastille Day and Tour de France Nails!

Came up with this stellar design while the husb was watching the Tour de France and I saw the Bastille Day colors on the Empire State Building. I'm actually really surprised at how well the bike turned out - looks like a real bike!

Hammock and Tree Nails!

Went on a trip to Pawley's Island, SC for a beach vacation with my husband and his family. We stayed at a wonderful house right on the beach with a screened in porch, boogie boards, and all the board games and puzzles we could play! I strongly recommend SpaceTeam! Also, if you're ever in Pawley's Island, you've got to visit Paradice Ice Cream. Stick to the ice cream (the ice is not up to Rita's or Louie G's standards), but it really is amazing - super fun flavors and wacky combinations that really work, like banana pudding!

Blue Mountain Ranch nails!

BMR nails to celebrate our wonderful trip to Blue Mountain Ranch summer camp. Send all your kids there! Oh, and yellow part represents "A Mountain Made of Gold" for "Friendship is a mountain made of gold that cannot be bought or sold." Seriously, people, send your kids to BMR!

Colorful Summer Stripes Nails

Summery stripe nails to celebrate June! (Told you I had a backlog!)

Pink and White Lace Nails

Pretty pink and white lacy nails!

Cloud and Sky Nails!

Pretty blue sky and fluffy clouds!

Gray and Pink Chevron Nails!

Gray and pink chevron nail art! Pretty!

Cookie Nails!

Mmm, aren't they delicious? Chocolate-chip!


Get ready for some MAJOR NAIL ACTION on the blog tonight! I (for good reasons, I promise!) put off doing all my September posts until tonight, but fortunately I've built up a backlog of nail art to post, so get ready for...