Sunday, April 29, 2007

Back together!

We're making this an official monthly deal. I love these two!!!
Now back to working on projects....

Saturday, April 28, 2007


Came back from the LEAD retreat. Met AMAZING people. This is my group, The Keren Amigos... wonderful people.

ask questions. communicate.

Thursday, April 26, 2007


There were various discussions in my creative writing class last night that
weren't directly related to the poetry workshop we were having. There's true
talent in that room and I will miss that class a lot. It's probably one of
the best classes I've taken at the university.

The instructor told us how the right word can make a huge difference in
poetry. She told us how in her ant and uncle's 55th wedding anniversary her
cousin referred to the love and passion his dad has for his mom even after
55 years by saying he was still a citizen of her.

"Plagiarize your cousins" my instructor said with a giggle. But we all
agreed it was such a grand example it was worth plagiarizing... hehehe.

That class is so refreshing....

P.S. it's called in this town AGAIN.

Sunday, April 22, 2007


I've been working on my professional practices presentation for tomorrow. I'll show a few posters and graphic design projects I've done as well as some paintings and a few photos. A very important part of the presentation is about influences in art, the instructor makes it a point to ask every student who he/she draws inspiration from. And so I included a part of that in my presentation. Here are some of the images I included and the names of those who made them:

Hillman Curtis: the man who will never come to Fayetteville, AR.

Modern Dog Design: the dudes who already came to Fayetteville, AR.

James Victore: The man who said "The political stuff, that's what graphic design is for. Not to sell socks... graphic design is a big fucking club with spikes in it and I wanna wield it, I wanna use it…I wanna use it in its pure, in its strongest, in its fullest potential"

Henri Cartier-Bresson: the photographer I found after overhearing a conversation.

P.S. of course I included Frida Kahlo, after all, I am one of the two latinas in the class and the other girl didn't mention her, so I will.

Friday, April 20, 2007

Say a prayer for Virginia Tech

photo source

So that those who suffer find peace and healing after this tragedy. So they find hope in what's left. Today, we are all Hokies.

Wednesday, April 18, 2007

Stories of lives lost at Virginia Tech

My heart goes out to those who lost a loved one at the massacre in Virginia Tech on Monday. I'm horrified by what happened, and can only pray for peace for those who are suffering right now. There's nothing more I can say. Lives were taken away, and what do you say to that?

Victims in Virginia Tech massacre

MSNBC staff and news service reports
Updated: 1:01 p.m. CT April 18, 2007

They came to Blacksburg, Va., from all over the country — and all over the world. They came to study and they came to teach. They had plans. They had friends. They had families.
As the list of confirmed victims in Monday's massacre on the Virginia Tech campus grew, so too did the number of stories about the individuals who fell victim to the gunman, 23 year-old Cho Seung-Hui of Centreville, Va.
There were stories of heroism. Students of Liviu Librescu, an engineering science and mechanics lecturer, say he blocked the door of his classroom with his body to protect those inside. Librescu, 76, was a Holocaust survivor.
Ryan Clark, the popular and gregarious member of the Marching Virginians band, was just weeks away from graduation. A resident advisor on the fourth floor of the West Ambler Johnston Hall dorm, Clark came to the aid of a student the morning of April 16. It cost him his life.
Students told of teachers that inspired them. Neighbors spoke of children they'd seen grow up and leave for college, lives filled with promise.
Kevin Granata was one of the top five biomechanics researchers in the country working on movement dynamics in cerebral palsy. He coached his children in many sports and extracurricular activities.
Reema Samaha, a freshman who performed with the school's Contemporary Dance Ensemble, was shot dead in French class.
Juan Ramon Ortiz, from Puerto Rico, decorated his parents’ one-story concrete house each Christmas. A neighbor heard Ortiz’s mother scream when she learned of her son’s death.
Here are the faces, the names and the stories of some of those killed on Monday. Many of the stories about the victims have come from readers.
Ross Abdallah Alameddine, 20, of Saugus, Mass. He was a sophomore English major who was gunned down in French class.
Alameddine's mother, Lynnette Alameddine, said Tuesday that she was "trying to get through the day here."
"Horrifying, really horrifying. I’m just trying to keep it together," she said.
Alameddine was a graduate of Austin Preparatory School in Reading, Mass.
Friends created a memorial page on that described Alameddine as "an intelligent, funny, easy going guy."
"You're such an amazing kid, Ross," wrote Zach Allen, who also attended Austin Prep, according to his profile. "You always made me smile, and you always knew the right thing to do or say to cheer anyone up."
Lynnette Alameddine said she was outraged by how the events were handled. "It happened in the morning and I did not hear (about Ross's death) until a quarter to 11 at night," she said. "That was outrageous. Two kids died, and then they shoot a whole bunch of them, including my son."
Jamie Bishop, 35, an instructor in German and German literature. According to his Web site, Bishop spent four years living in Germany, where he "spent most of his time learning the language, teaching English, drinking large quantities of wheat beer, and wooing a certain fraulein."
The "fraulein" was Bishop’s wife, Stephanie Hofer, who also teaches in Virginia Tech’s German program.
From 2000 to 2005, Bishop was an academic technology liaison at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, according to WRAL TV.
At Virginia Tech, he also taught classes via the Faculty Development Institute on different computer programs and the use of blogs and other online tools in higher education, WRAL said.
He received his undergraduate and master's degrees from the University of Georgia.
Brian Bluhm, 25, was born in Iowa and raised in Detroit, according to friends.
Bluhm was an ardent fan of the Detroit Tigers major league baseball team, who announced his death before Tuesday’s game against Kansas City.
"He went to a game last weekend and saw them win, and I’m glad he did,” said Bluhm’s close friend, Michael Marshall of Richmond, Va.
The master’s student in water resources received his undergraduate degree in civil engineering at Virginia Tech and was getting ready to defend his thesis. He already had accepted a job in Baltimore, Marshall said.
Bluhm moved from Iowa to Detroit to Louisville, Ky., before coming to Virginia. His parents moved to Winchester while he was in school, so Blacksburg became his real home, Marshall said.
Bluhm also loved Virginia Tech’s Hokies football team, and a close group of friends often traveled to away games. But Marshall said it was his faith and work with the Baptist Collegiate Ministries that his friend loved most.
“Brian was a Christian, and first and foremost that’s what he would want to be remembered as,” he said.
Ryan Clark, 22, from Martinez, Ga., a biology, English and psychology major. He was a resident adviser on the fourth floor of the dorm where the rampage began.
Just a month from graduation, he was a member of the Marching Virginians Band and intended to pursue a Ph. D in psychology. Called "Stack" by his friends, Clark carried a 4.0 grade-point average, said Vernon Collins, coroner in Columbia County, Ga.
"He was just one of the greatest people you could possibly know," Gregory Walton, a friend who graduated last year, said as he fought tears. "He was always smiling, always laughing. I don't think I ever saw him mad in the five years I knew him."
Arielle Perlmutter posted on that she had been friends with Ryan for a decade. "Ryan and I worked at Camp Big Heart, a camp for children and adults with special needs for part of every summer since I was in high school," she posted. "Ryan was one of the most amazing, loving and caring young men I have ever met. He went into every day of camp, trying as it could be, with a smile and a open mind. I rarely, in the years I knew Ryan, saw him frown.
"Ryan directed the music/dance program at camp and brought cheer to all the campers around him. He was constantly smiling and dancing, signing and cheering. The campers would gather around Ryan and hug him. We have a picture of a year that Ryan was at camp on his birthday. All of the campers were surrounding him, hugging him, and all you could see of him was his head sticking out above the crowd. They all loved 'Mr. Ryan'. Camp will never be the same and we will all bear the scar of this tragedy for many years to come. Ryan will never be forgotten, and always be missed."
Perlmutter, 27 and a teacher in Buford, Ga., later told that Clark had always wanted to work with kids. “We’d joked about him coming to work at my school, so that we'd be closer."
"I don’t think there’s enough words to explain how you feel when someone passes,” she said. "But he was one step above a lot of people."
Austin Cloyd, 18, was a freshman majoring in international studies and French.
Cloyd, an international studies major from Blacksburg, Va., was so inspired by an Appalachian service project that helped rehabilitate homes that she and her mother started a similar program in their Illinois town, her former pastor said.
The Cloyds were active members of the First United Methodist Church in Champaign, Ill., before moving to Blacksburg in 2005, the Rev. Terry Harter said. The family moved when Cloyd’s father, C. Bryan Cloyd, took a job in the accounting department at Virginia Tech, Harter said.
Harter, whose church held a prayer service for the family Tuesday night, described Cloyd as a “very delightful, intelligent, warm young lady” and an athlete who played basketball and volleyball in high school. But it was the mission trips to Appalachia that showed just how caring and faithful she was, he said.
“It made an important impact on her life, that’s the kind of person she was,” he said.
Jocelyne Couture-Nowak, age unknown, a French language teacher and former Montreal resident, according to the Canadian Broadcasting Corp.
Couture-Nowak was instrumental in the creation of the first French school in a town in Nova Scotia.
She lived there in the 1990s with her husband, Jerzy Nowak, the head of the horticulture department at Virginia Tech.
Richard Landry, a spokesman with the francophone school board in Truro, Nova Scotia, said Couture-Nowak was one of three mothers who pushed for the founding of the Ecole acadienne de Truro in 1997.
“It was very important for her daughters to be taught in French,” said Rejean Sirois, who worked with her in establishing the school.
Elizabeth Taggart, of Reston, Va., posted to that she had stayed in touch with her freshman French teacher despite switching to Spanish last semester.
"My Spanish class was in the classroom in Norris right after hers at 10:10," said Taggart. "She and I had reconnected this semester since I would always arrive early to keep up with my French."
Taggart remembers her former teacher as a "one of the most caring, loving teachers I have met on our campus, an incredible professor and woman."
Daniel Perez Cueva, 21, a student from Peru who was studying international relations. He was shot during French class, according to his mother, Betty Cueva.
"[Daniel] was very close to his mother," an anonymous poster from Woodbridge, Va., wrote to "Every time she came to my house, she would tell me stories of how well he was doing in VTech and how proud she was of her son."
He was also a member of Peru's swim team.
His father, Flavio Perez, spoke of the death earlier to RPP radio in Peru.
He lives in Peru and said he was trying to obtain a humanitarian visa from the U.S. consulate here. He is separated from Cueva, who said she had lived in the United States for six years.
A spokesman at the U.S. Embassy in Lima said the student’s father “will receive all the attention possible when he applies” for the visa.
Kevin Granata, 45, an engineering science and mechanics professor who was married and had three children. He had served in the military and later conducted orthopedic research in hospitals before going to Virginia Tech, where he and his students researched muscle and reflex response and robotics.
Department chief Ishwar Puri said Granata was one of the top five biomechanics researchers in the country, working on movement dynamics in cerebral palsy.
Engineering professor Demetri Telionis said Granata was successful, but also kind. "With so many research projects and graduate students, he still found time to spend with his family and he coached his children in many sports and extracurricular activities," Telionis said. "He was a wonderful family man. We will all miss him dearly."
Matthew Gwaltney, 24, was on the brink of finishing his graduate degree and was planning to return to his hometown for a new job and to be near his parents.
He was a master’s student in civil and environmental engineering and was attending Virginia Tech on a fellowship, his father, Greg Gwaltney, said Wednesday from his home in Chester, near Richmond.
“Matt came home Thursday night. He had an interview in Richmond Friday morning, and we got to have dinner with him,” said Linda Gwaltney, his stepmother. “He went back to school Friday after his interview.”
It was the last time they saw their only child.
Gwaltney had been the school newspaper’s sports editor and named “Best guy to take home to your parents,” his high schol principal, Robert Stansberry, said.
At Virginia Tech, where also earned his undergraduate degree, his favorite place was Cassell Coliseum, his parents said.
“He went to every women’s and men’s basketball game, and went to every football game,” Linda Gwaltney said. “If there was a football game, we knew he wasn’t coming home that weekend.”
Caitlin Hammaren, 19, of Westtown, N.Y., was a sophomore majoring in international studies and French, according to officials at her former school district.
“She was just one of the most outstanding young individuals that I’ve had the privilege of working with in my 31 years as an educator,” said John Latini, principal of Minisink Valley High School, where she graduated in 2005. “Caitlin was a leader among our students.”
Minisink Valley students and teachers shared their grief Tuesday at a counseling center set up in the school, Latini said.
Vanessa Oratvz posted on that Hammaren was her dorm resident adviser. "She was the nicest person I have ever met," Oratvz wrote.
"She would do anything for you at the drop of a hat without any questions. She was always there to help you, or just talk. Late night she would stop in and say hi whenever she could. She was always dedicated to helping her friends and the community."
Jeremy Herbstritt, 27, of Bellefonte, Pa. A graduate student in engineering, he had two undergraduate degrees from Penn State, one in biochemistry and molecular biology from 2003, and another in civil engineering from 2006.
“Talkie, talkie, talkie, everybody likes to talk,” read the description in the Bellefonte High School yearbook of the 1998 graduate. Below was a picture of Herbstritt, with a sly grin, talking on a pay phone.
He grew up on a small farm just outside the central Pennsylvania borough of Bellefonte, where his father, Michael, raised steer and sheep.
His career goal was to be a civil engineer, and he talked of getting into environmental work after school.
“He liked to work on machinery, take a lot of stuff apart and fixed it,” said the victim’s grandfather Thomas Herbstritt, 77, of St. Marys. “He was a studious kid.”
"He was a wonderful student and person, and will be greatly missed," Amy Sten posted on, identifying herself as a former teacher of Herbstritt's.
Rachael Hill, 18, of Richmond, Va., a freshman. She had graduated from Grove Avenue Christian School.
Hill, an only child, was popular and funny, had a penchant for shoes, and was competitive on the volleyball court.
“Rachael was a very bright, articulate, intelligent, beautiful, confident, poised young woman. She had a tremendous future in front of her,” said Clay Fogler, administrator for the Grove Avenue school. “Obviously, the Lord had other plans for her.”
Her father, Guy Hill, said the family was too distraught to talk about Hill on Tuesday, but relatives were planning to have memorial events later in the week. “We just need some time here,” he said tearfully.
Emily Jane Hilscher, 19, from Woodville, Va., according to family friend John McCarthy. She was a freshman majoring in animal and poultry sciences and equine science. "Emily was a beautiful, talented, sweet kid who had a world of potential," he told
McCarthy said Hischer was known for her love of animals. "She worked at a veterinarian's office, and cared about them her whole life," he said.
A friend, Will Nachless, 19, said Hilscher "was always very friendly. Before I even knew her I thought she was very outgoing, friendly and helpful, and she was great in chemistry."
Matthew La Porte, age unknown, from Dumont, N.J., a freshman majoring in university studies. He had been an Air Force cadet at Virginia Tech, according to his former platoon leader, David Wheeler.
La Porte credited the Carson Long Military Institute in New Bloomfield, Penn., with turning his life around during his years there from 1999 to 2005. "I know that Carson Long was my second chance," he said during a graduation speech, printed in the school yearbook.
"Matthew was an exemplary student at Carson Long whose love of music and fellow cadets were an inspiration to all on campus," Carson Long said in a statement.
La Porte graduated third in his class and was also drum major for the school's drum and bugle corps during his senior year.
Jarrett Lane, 22, from Narrows, Va., a senior majoring in civil engineering who was valedictorian of his high school class.
His high school put up a memorial to Lane that included pictures, musical instruments and his athletic jerseys.
Lane played the trombone, ran track, and played football and basketball at Narrows High School. “We’re just kind of binding together as a family,” Principal Robert Stump said.
Lane’s brother-in-law Daniel Farrell called Lane fun-loving and “full of spirit.”
“He had a caring heart and was a friend to everyone he met,” Farrell said. “We are leaning on God’s grace in these trying hours.”
In a posting on, Jessica Green wrote that "the small but very close community of Narrows, VA lost a dear friend and an amazing guy. Jarrett Lane was a very humble and down-to-earth guy and there couldn't have been any sweeter person to have a conversation with. Our small town is feeling the effects of this heinous crime that took place just 20 minutes away."
Henry Lee, age unknown, born in Vietnam and raised in Roanoke, Va., a freshman majoring in computer engineering. He was the ninth of ten children, according to the Roanoke Times, and was described by teachers as a serious student.
Liviu Librescu, 76, an engineering science and mechanics lecturer. Born in Romania, he survived the Nazi Holocaust and emigrated to Israel in 1978 before moving to Virginia in 1985.
An Israeli citizen, he had taught at Virginia Tech for 20 years and was internationally known for his work in aeronautical engineering.
"His research has enabled better aircraft, superior composite materials, and more robust aerospace structures," said Ishwar Puri, the head of the engineering science and mechanics department.
After surviving the Nazi killings, Librescu escaped from Communist Romania and made his way to the United States before he was killed in Monday’s massacre, which coincided with Israel’s Holocaust Remembrance Day.
Librescu's son, Joe, said his father's students sent e-mails detailing how the professor saved their lives by blocking the doorway of his classroom from the approaching gunman before he was fatally shot.
“My father blocked the doorway with his body and asked the students to flee,” Joe Librescu said from his home outside of Tel Aviv. “Students started opening windows and jumping out.”
G.V. Loganathan, 51, was an Indian-born lecturer at the Department of Civil and Environmental Engineering.
"We all feel like we have had an electric shock, we do not know what to do," his brother G.V. Palanivel told the NDTV news channel in India. "He has been a driving force for all of us, the guiding force."
Loganathan, who was born in the southern Indian city of Chennai, had been at Virginia Tech since 1982.
Married with two daughters, he won several awards, including the university's prestigious Wine Award for Excellence in Teaching.
Loganathan had served on the faculty senate and was an adviser to about 75 undergraduate students.
"Dr. G.V. Loganathan was my favorite professor and was my graduate advisor when I was a civil engineering student at Virginia Tech in the late 80's and early 90's," Glenda La Rue said in a posting on "Dr. Loganathan was an excellent teacher and mentor ... I will always remember him for his kind heart and patience he displayed towards me and his other students. He truly had a passion for teaching and getting to know his advisees. He was a primary reason that I chose to pursue a career in the engineering specialty of water resources and I credit much of my success to him. He will be missed greatly."
Partahi Lombantoruan, 34, of Indonesia, was a civil engineering doctoral student. He had been studying at at Virginia Tech for three years, said his father, Tohom Lumbantoruan, a 66-year-old retired army officer.
Lumbantoruan’s family in Indonesia said they sold off property and cars to pay his tuition and that his goal was to become a teacher in the United States.
“We tried everything to completely finance his studies in the United States,” said his father. “We only wanted him to succeed in his studies, but ... he met a tragic fate.”
His stepmother, Sugiyarti, said he had called almost daily to talk to the family. In their last conversation he had asked for the latest news on Indonesian politics.
“Why can people bring guns to campus?” she asked, weeping. “How is it possible that so many innocent people could be killed? How could it happen?”
An aunt, 53-year-old Christina Panjaitan, said her nephew was hardworking, intelligent and never complained. “He told me he wanted to teach in America,” she said.
Family members were planning a public burial in the Indonesian capital, Jakarta.
Lauren McCain, age unknown, of Hampton, Va. An undergraduate majoring in international studies.
Daniel O'Neil, 22, of Lincoln, R.I. A graduate student in environmental engineering, he also played guitar and wrote his own songs, which he posted on a Web site,
Friend Steve Craveiro described him as smart, responsible and a hard worker, someone who never got into trouble.
“He would come home from school over the summer and talk about projects, about building bridges and stuff like that,” Craveiro said. “He loved his family. He was pretty much destined to be extremely successful. He just didn’t deserve to have happen what happened.”
O’Neil graduated in 2002 from Lincoln High School in Rhode Island and graduated from Lafayette College in Easton, Pa., before heading to Virginia Tech, where he was also a teaching assistant, Craveiro said.
A Lafayette publication said that while there O’Neil was vice president of the Arts Society. His high school yearbook noted he was on the cross country and outdoor track teams, the drama club and the National Honor Society, according to the Providence Journal.
Juan Ortiz, 26, a graduate student in civil engineering from Puerto Rico, was killed while teaching a class, his father said.
Ortiz graduated magna cum laude from the Polytechnic University of San Juan, Puerto Rico, and arrived at Virginia Tech last August. He was married to a fellow student pursuing a teaching career, and they had planned to have a child soon.
"He was an extraordinary son," his father, Juan Ramon, said. "On his wedding day, I told him ... what I felt in my heart, I thanked him for being my son, it was special."
Ortiz was also in a band with his father and other relatives. "He loved salsa dancing," his father said.
Minal Panchal, 26, a first-year building science student from Mumbai, India, according to foreign ministry spokesman Navtej Sarna.
Erin Peterson, age unknown, graduated in 2006 from Westfield High School in Chantilly, Va., along with a second victim, Reema Samatha. That is the same high school that the alleged gunman, Cho Seung-Hui, graduated from three years earlier.
It was not known if Cho knew the victims.
Michael Pohle, 23, of Flemington, N.J., graduated from Hunterdon Central High, according to school officials.
Julia Pryde, age unknown, a graduate student from Middletown, N.J.
Mary Read, 19, of Annandale, Va., according to her aunt, Karen Kuppinger, of Rochester, N.Y.
She was born in South Korea into an Air Force family and lived in Texas and California before settling in the northern Virginia suburb of Annandale, said Kuppinger.
Read considered a handful of colleges, including nearby George Mason University, before choosing Tech. It was a popular destination among her Annandale High School classmates, Kuppinger said.
She had yet to declare a major.
"I think she wanted to try to spread her wings," said Kuppinger, whose niece had struggled adjusting to Virginia Tech's large campus. She'd recently begun making friends and looking into a sorority.
Kuppinger said the family started calling Read as news reports surfaced.
“After three or four hours passed and she hadn’t picked up her cell phone or answered her e-mail ... we did get concerned,” Kuppinger said. “We honestly thought she would pop up.”
Reema Samaha, 18, from Centreville, Va., a freshman who also performed with the school's Contemporary Dance Ensemble. Her brother Omar, a Virginia Tech graduate, told NBC's TODAY show that she was shot dead while in French class.
Their father, Joe Samaha, told "Dateline NBC" that "she was a beautiful person and that's what I'll remember her as. We've lost a very talented beautiful young lady who was growing here at the university. Her heart was in dance and theater and she belonged to a contemporary dance ensemble here and she loved that very much."
Katerina Rodgaard, in a posting to, said she had been a dance instructor to Samaha. "I will never forget her constant smile," she wrote. "So much positive energy. She was such a beautiful dancer as well. ... We were all like a family and she will be missed dearly. She loved being in dance class and I was so proud to hear that she continued her dancing in college. So young, so beautiful and so talented. I'm still in shock."
Samaha had recently taken up belly dancing, a nod to her family’s roots in Lebanon, where the Samahas visited each summer.
“She was just beautiful and when you watched her, I thought she was one of the most gorgeous girls in the world, inside and out,” said Lauren Walters, a former classmate of Samaha’s who now attends Clemson University
Samaha and another victim, Erin Peterson, graduated from Westfield High in Chantilly, Va., in 2006, three years after the alleged gunman, Cho Seung-Hui, graduated from the same school. It was not clear if they knew each other.
Leslie Sherman, age 20, a sophomore majoring in history and international studies.
"Leslie Sherman was a remarkable young lady," an anonymous poster wrote to "Everyone looked up to her."
“She had a lot of friends, and was a very outgoing person,” recalled friend Ann Marks, who worked with Sherman in the cafeteria.
The poster, from Springfield, Va., recalled running cross country and track with Sherman in high school. "She always put 100 percent effort into running, as well as into every other aspect [of]life."
Maxine Turner, age unknown, from Vienna, Va., a senior majoring in chemical engineering.
An anonymous poster told that she had been a classmate of Turner's at James Madison High School in Vienna. "She was at the top of our class and did really well in school ... Vienna is a very close, tight-knit community and I know those from our graduating class of 2003 and all other JMHS students past and present are grieving from this tragic loss of life."
Nicole White, age unknown, of Carrollton, Va., a junior majoring in international studies and German.
"I grew up with Nicole White," Michelle D. Clay, of Toccoa Falls, Ga., wrote to "She was one my four best friends, and we all shared everything."
"I never imagined she would be gone in the blink of an eye."
Information has been compiled from The Associated Press, NBC News, (the Virginia Tech student newspaper) and other media outlets.
© 2007 MSNBC's Miguel Llanos, Kristin Kalning and Kari Huus contributed to this report.


Sunday, April 15, 2007

I have nothing to do but smile!

Actually, I have quiet a few things to do. But I took a day off today. It wasn't by choice, but it ended up working out just right.

I woke up with a migraine so reading or typing the pending project were out of the way. I had to go bowling for work (yes, for work!) so I took my migraine medicine and left. On my way there I almost cried cause the bright sunlight was killing me, then the noise at the alley wasn't that beneficial either... but it was fun. By the time I got back home the headache was almost gone. ALMOST.

I found my mom in the front yard just chilling taking in some sun. So I sat next to her and ended up lying on the grass with the warm sun over me and the cool grass under. It was neat. So I got my camera and got a few pics.... will later go in the photoblog, but for now, you can see some on flickr.

Yesterday was so crazy busy that today I woke up thinking it was Saturday... The migraine let me know I needed a break. So I took it.

Saturday, April 14, 2007

Today I have....

....been the guest speaker
the volunteer
the worker
the soon-to-be graduate
the past scholarship recipient
the ride
the friend
the artist
the designer
the activist
and the angry revolutionary

....talked to friends
to students
to real state agents
to magazine editors
to news paper editors
to volunteers
to child care professionals
to state governor's assistants
to my boss
and to strangers

....driven to school
then a service project site
then home
then a convention center
then back home
and i'm about to head back to school again do much more still.
I guess this has been a busy Saturday.

Wednesday, April 11, 2007

Working hard

to not have worked in vain.

Sunday, April 08, 2007

Strange mood

Florida palm tree, originally uploaded by begutierrez.

After spring break in New Orleans and the conference in Florida I haven't been quite sure of what's happening around me or what I need to do. Or maybe is just that I haven't taken the time to think about all that has happened already.

I've been in a weird mode. Since I've missed almost a week of classes and there's a lot of catching up to do, there hasn't been a lot of time for me to write on the blog or on anything, really. I have to write a couple of poems for workshop in my creative writing class and the first one I wrote was not very good.

I'm in great need of a time of peace and quiet to just relax. While in Orlando there was a night when everyone got in the pool and I was with my friend just talking about what's next for us after graduation. He has everything ready and I'm just the opposite with so many things just coming against me like tidal waves. Right there, when we were sitting by the pool with our feet in the water I felt like opening my heart and just telling him all that's in my head. He said he had been talking to someone about me and why I'm not going to grad school right away, and he seemed worried (like so many others), but didn't have the story quite complete. It's not about the fact I'm not going for my master's right away, that's the part that's actually my choice. I didn't say anything. He wouldn't have remembered it the next day anyway. But when everyone came back from the other side of the pool and he decided to get in the water with pants and all I took his wallet and cell phone and just stayed there by the pool till he came back. Everyone left while he was walking around the water and so I had a little time, right there, in the middle of the night with a fantastic tropical weather and a soft breeze just to myself. I could have stayed there till the sun came up, but when my friends came back to where I was I walked them back to the room.

And coming back here, I just feel like the weather this days. All out of place and time. There's winter weather in the Spring and everyone's almost crying about it, and even the poor flowers and plants that were in bloom are dying now.

I'll get myself together soon. But there's just too much to do before I can get to that, it's a bit ridiculous.

Saturday, April 07, 2007

Mi hermanito!

I hope I see you soon again!

More of B's Videos

That's all I had to say.

Oh, yeah...
and friends are fabulous and sometimes crazy:

Friday, April 06, 2007

It's cold...

It's like 35 degrees F outside, it's breeze, and it snowed a little last night. This is not usual, it was 80 degrees F last week... and still, the neighbors are having a barbecue. This is hot chocolate weather, in my tropical-blooded opinion. But hey, if they were to bring me a piece of that carne asada I wouldn't say no! :)

Definitely wishing for the sunshiny Florida weather right now....

Thursday, April 05, 2007

Mi hermanito!

Mi hermanito!, originally uploaded by begutierrez.

I just got back Orlando, Florida. It was a faaaaan-tastic week, but what I loved the most of the trip didn't even take place in Orlando. It happened in Dallas, TX.... at the airport.... during a layover.

As the plane landed in Texan soil and we were told we can now use our electronic devices I called my bro and said "so, it's raining in Dallas!" he went on with the conversation and I said "I'm here. In Dallas. I have like an hour to see you, can you come to the airport?!" and twenty minutes later we were sitting in one of those airport benches laughing and talking. I can't believe I saw him, after all these years. It was so good to see him. Last time I saw him is the day I left my country. It'd been over 5 years.

We took a couple of pictures and hugged a lot. I didn't want to say goodbye because we only got about 30 minutes together. But I had to get back pass the security doors to get to Florida to a conference that wouldn't give me nearly as much joy as those 30 minutes did.