30 September, 2009

fun with proust, take five - jasmine

i decided that it was my turn to do one of these. and it was hard. funnily enough, the question i struggled with the most was number one. i spend most of my time trying to figure out how i can make myself, and everything else, perfect, yet i struggled with thinking of my idea of perfect happiness. that was a bit of an eye opener...

1. what is your idea of perfect happiness?
levi. babies. disneyland.

2. what is your most treasured possession?
i think that would have to be my blankie. it's tattered & torn, but i will never throw it away. it's my ee-ee, and i love it.

3. what is your greatest fear?
the unknown. so on a bad day - everything. and cancer.

4. which talent would you most like to have?
i would love to be a significantly better dancer. like sytycd-stage-worthy-my-body-does-what-i-tell-it-to-when-i-tell-it-to good. it seems like it would be so freeing & joyful to be a true master of dance.

5. what or who is the greatest love of your life?
levi. he's my hero. and i'm not being silly when i say that. he truly is.

6. what is the trait you most deplore in yourself?
i don't like how hard it can be for me to just snap out of it. once i get in a funk, it can take me weeks to truly move beyond it. i wish i had more control over my thoughts & moods. i'm working on it.

7. what do you value most in your friends?
loyalty, sincerity, and, right now, availability

since it's my blog, i decided that i get to have two favorite photos. unfair, right?

one that makes me laugh:

and my real favorite:

29 September, 2009

it's a little early, buuut

i don't care!

is it ever really too early for peppermint ice cream?

i don't think so.

we bought this on friday night.

it was gone by sunday.

levi didn't eat any.


(p.s. does anyone else think that it's impossible to get full from peppermint ice cream? it tastes like it can't have any fat or calories in it!)

28 September, 2009

it's true.

we thought these little onesies were funny.

someone has only thought i was a boy once since i've had short hair. in my defense though, i had a life jacket on, my feet were strapped to a wakeboard, only my head was sticking out of the water, and the guy was like 30 feet away.

we had a good weekend! we cleaned the house, played with the kitties, sat on our new couch a lot, had dinner with my family, talked to levi's dad on the phone, i went shopping with my mom, and we played cranium with a big group of friends.

did i study for my first french test on thursday? no.
did i study for my first lit midterm on friday? no.
did i do laundry? another big no.

but i did start reading i was told there'd be cake by sloane crosley, and i played a lot of sorority life on facebook.

i know my priorities.

hope you all had lovely weekends!

25 September, 2009

on the bus ride home from school

yesterday, i found myself sitting on the bus resting my head against the window at a red light. the vibration from the idling engine shook the tears that had already been welling in my eyes causing them to trickle down my cheeks. i was crying. on a bus. packed with a ton of people who don't know my name. who don't know my thoughts and ambitions. who don't know my likes and dislikes.

to begin with, bus people, my name is jasmine lael hunter. my thoughts and ambitions change too rapidly for me to sit here listing them for you...or for me to pretend like i understand them myself. today, my likes seem to be few, and my dislikes seem to be vast. i feel aimless. i feel undisciplined. i can't make myself fit into any categories i've come across...God knows i've tried to find an appropriate label for myself. i don't know what i want "to do." i can't seem to find the proper fit. well, that's not entirely true. i want to have children. i want to be a mother. but, right now, i'm not a mother. i don't have any babies to look after. so, bus people, please tell me, what do i do now? how do i kill time until i get to do what i want to do? why has this been the only consistent answer i have to the question"what do you want to be when you grow up"? what am i supposed to with that? can any one of you tell me, oh distinguished patrons of public transportation? i can't major in preparation for motherhood. i can't take classes on what's best to feed my children or how to put on a cloth diaper and administer cough syrup. i don't want to live my pre-baby life simply longing for the day i can have children. i don't want to feel like i'm waiting for something. because, just like everything else, waiting can turn into a bad habit. if i feel like i'm waiting, longing, and killing time now, who's to say i won't feel like that when my desires have been realized? who's to say i'll ever be satisfied with anything i've done? bus people, can you tell me anything?? can anybody help me?

no one said a word.
they all just sat and stared.

i wrote that yesterday. i wasn't exactly in a chipper mood. but it was how i was feeling at the moment...so i wrote about it. and now i'm sharing it with you, even if it's not exactly positive. please don't worry about me. i'm a moody girl, and i tend to feel things more deeply than is necessary in the moment. it is true that i don't really know what i want "to do" besides become a mom. but, right now, i don't think of my time without kids as "killing time". time isn't meant to be killed or filled. it's meant to be treasured and used wisely. i don't want to just kill my time; i want to do important things with it and make it count for something...even if it's only something small. when i was rereading what i wrote, this popped into my head:

"delight yourself in the lord, and he will give you the desires of your heart. commit your way to the lord; trust in him, and he will do this: he will make your righteousness shine like the dawn, the justice of your cause like the noonday sun." psalm 37:4-6

so i choose to keep my face turned toward the sky and to just keep going.

24 September, 2009

for sale!

remember how i bought that yellow coat?
well, it was a bit of an impulse buy. a non-returnable impulse buy.
and it's just a little bit too snug on me.

so i'm planning on selling it on ebay, but i wanted to give you guys the opportunity first in case anyone wants it. it's a size small and fits like an extra small to a small.

i also have a skirt that i bought on ebay that's a little bit too small (i really prefer when things are too big - it's better on my confidence.). it's from anthropologie, and it's a size 2. i am usually a size 2 at anthro, but this is a small size 2. if you're an anthro or j.crew size 2, this skirt will not fit you. i just bought another one in a size 4 because i love it so much. it's gorgeous.

both items are brand new, never been worn.

brand new juicy couture coat size small $230 (includes shipping - international shipping is extra). original price was somewhere between 350-400, i think.

brand new anthropologie thawing gingko skirt (purchased on ebay) size 2 - $35 (includes shipping - international shipping is extra). higher waisted mini skirt.

(skirt is sold)

pay pal only. first one to pay for the item gets it! email me if you'd like to buy (jasmine.lael{at}gmail{dot}com), and i will bill you through pay pal.

p.s. i disabled comments on this one.

fun with proust, take four - olivia

today, the darling olivia from everyday musings is sharing her answers to the proust questionnaire with us. olivia has a terrific sense of style, a sweet smile, and she just opened her own etsy shop, so if you haven't read her blog yet, please check her out!

here's olivia:

1. what is your idea of perfect happiness?
waking up everyday with a sense of optimism

2. what is your most treasured possession?
my antique cameo ring from my parents. and my teddy.

3. what is your greatest fear?
losing someone i love.

4. which talent would you most like to have?
i wish i was a world-class painter. i also wish i was a songwriter and musician like my dad.

5. what or who is the greatest love of your life?

6. what is the trait you most deplore in yourself?
my moodiness...reserved for the people i care about the most.

7. what do you value most in your friends?
sincerity and a sense of humor.

boy, can i relate to number 6?!

and olivia's favorite photo of herself:

23 September, 2009

i'm back. with a change.

gosh. taking a break sure can make you lazy!

so can being sick...i'm not quite full blown sick yet, so fingers crossed that my body fights this off.

anyway, hi!

how are you?

i've missed you!

i've been thinking of all kinds of ways that i can change things around here so that i feel more inspired.

one of the things i came up with has to do with sponsors - i considered throwing the whole sponsor thing out entirely, but then i thought of something much better.

i decided that i am going to start donating 50% of sponsor fees to charity:

25% is going to UNICEF

a little here in the states and a little abroad.

if you're interested in sponsoring an experiment in poverty, along with these incredible organizations, shoot me an email, and we'll get you all set up - jasmine.lael@gmai.com

someone sent me this quote a few months ago:

"if your spirit is broken, if your ability to dream is missing, then you truly are in poverty."

it's so true.

the original intent of this blog was to keep me from truly entering a state of poverty. and it has helped me soooo much. all of you have helped me so much. and now i would like to help other people in a bigger way. people who are in situations that i've never even come close to experiencing.

thank you to each and everyone one of you who reads this blog. by reading, you give me the opportunity to participate in something much bigger than myself. and for that, i am grateful.

18 September, 2009



i have decided that i'm not going to quit blogging.

after being honest about it and just letting it all out and getting my emotions out of the way, i couldn't really imagine leaving.

so i'm sticking around.

but i'm not gonna lie, i'm loving this break, and i really needed it.

i have now learned that breaks can be really good and really healthy, and i am going to take them when i need them.

sometimes i'm a little dense (or maybe stubborn and proud are more appropriate words), and it takes me awhile to learn things. but better late than never!

i'm circulating some ideas through my brain right now on how to change some things around here.

i won't be back until monday or wednesday, but i will definitely be back!
thank you sooooo much for the outpouring of love, concern, and well wishes. you don't know how much it means to me, but i assure you it means a lot. i wish i could personally respond and thank each and every one of you.

thanks for sticking with me. i'll see you soon.


16 September, 2009

a break

i don't know if i want to continue blogging.

it feels different than it used to, and i'm not sure what happened.

i kinda feel like everybody stopped caring...which is making it difficult for me to care or feel inspired at all.

and i'm just feeling really overwhelmed in general.

i feel behind in every aspect of my life. like i can't keep up.

for now, i think i'll just take the rest of the week off.

i'm probably just in a funk and will be over it by next week.

i don't know. we'll see.

pumpkin love

have you tried the pumpkin cream cheese pie from claim jumper?

we highly recommend it...despite the looks on our faces.

(gretel likes it too.)

at the car show

we went to the classic car show in our neighborhood this weekend.

have i mentioned that we love our neighborhood?

yeah, i might have said that once or twice.

it's so cool being able to walk to something that you would have never bothered driving to before just to check it out.

the car show was pretty cool.

we found some cars we wouldn't mind driving home.

cute butt!
coolest mom car ever.
this says "high mileage club - volvo"
we are big volvo lovers (they really do last forever), and this was the cutest little car ever.
i want one!

15 September, 2009

fun with proust, take three - naomi

bet you thought i forgot about fun with proust, huh?

nope, i didn't!

this week, naomi from the rockstar diaries shared her answers and her favorite photo of herself with us.

i especially love her answer to number 7. those are the kind of friends that everyone needs at least one or two of, and i think it's a mark of good character that naomi values this trait in her friends.

1. what is your perfect idea of happiness?
when the people i love are happy, i'm happy.

2. what is your most treasured possession?
my polaroid camera.

3. what is your greatest fear?
public speaking. losing the ones i love. car accidents.

4. which talent would you most like to have?
i'd love to paint.

5. what or who is the greatest love of your life?
my husband. he's a really good kisser and makes the best pancakes.

6. what is the trait you most deplore in yourself?
i wish i could just let some things go.

7. what do you value most in your friends?
their ability to constantly challenge me to be a better me. always.

and here is naomi's very favorite photo of herself, taken by her husband:

it's such a beautiful photo. makes me want to visit d.c.!

thank you so much for sharing, naomi!

14 September, 2009

he's crafty.

levi doesn't want to go out tonight (as in simply leaving the house), but i do, so he's manipulating me with sad faces saying that gretel needs us.

that's low, levi. really low.

do i need to remind you of the quote we saw on the back of that classic car the other day?

oh, i do?

okay, here it is:

"we do not stop playing because we grow old. we grow old because we stop playing."
(you can read it if you click the photo to make it bigger.)

so come on! let's go!

a gretel loaded post

she's home! the adorable and tiny 8 week old gretel snack-pack myers came home on saturday afternoon.

the snack-pack part of her name is kind of a long story, but she's gretel when she's sweet and snack-pack when she goes into kitten-crazy/adventure mode.

she fits right in here, and she is very comfortable already. she hasn't had a timid moment. within the first hour at home, she used her litter box! she's eating her food, learning what "no" means, scaring me to death by trying to climb up the screens on our windows. she already loves playing string and exploring all over the house. she plays really hard and then likes to crash on my tummy. she is a very cuddly kitty which i love. she can't jump up on the chair i use in the living room so she sits at my feet and asks to be picked up. i, of course, immediately indulge her. we have bonded like crazy. she gives me kisses and looks up into my eyes. ugh, i love her so much. i miss her when i'm not home. i am going to be a wreck when i have human babies.

i'm actually allergic to cats, so our bedroom is a no kitty zone. i thought gretel would cry when we went to bed on her first night, but she didn't! i had been cuddling with her in a blanket all day so that it would smell like me. i put it in her little bed outside our closed bedroom door, put her inside, gave her a little cuddle, and said good night. she was there every time i got up in the middle of the night and she was there when levi got up in the morning. and no crying!

lily is still adapting, but she's not really hissing at her anymore. we're giving lily lots of attention so she doesn't feel left out. within a week, i think she'll be comfortable with her. and within a couple weeks, i think they'll be friends. fingers crossed! :)

onto the photos! there's a million...i hope you don't mind.

(she's an apple kitty.)
(she's licking the whipped cream from a leftover piece of pumpkin cream cheese pie.)

(i took this photo of levi & lily about a month ago, so we had to get one with gretel too.)

11 September, 2009

happy things

reasons i'm smiling this week (and weekend):

- i dropped my painting class (i CRIED in class last week - it was just too much for me) and am now taking a friday class that i love instead ("comic spirit" - comparative world lit class studying humor as a genre - we get to read shel silverstein, my favorite poet!)

- because of furloughs, i don't have to go to school today!

- fridays have become my "i get to wear cute clothes" day since i can't wear them any other day (because i have tennis, jazz, and ballet). maybe i'll start taking friday morning photos? we'll see.

- super fun plans for tomorrow during the day

- a birthday party SCAVENGER HUNT tomorrow night: do you know how much i LOVE scavenger hunts or games of any kind?? so excited.

- the weather's getting cooler (hallelujah!)

- i'm looking forward to wearing my beautiful new coat soon (i went with option three in this vote - it's anthro and soooo cute on).

- we have all brand new tires on our little werewolf. levi noticed a HOLE in one and then we got a flat in another the next day.

- baby gretel snack-pack should be coming home this weekend!!! i can't wait to cuddle my new little kitty.

- i have done a really great job cooking at home this week: very proud of myself. i might post recipes over the weekend in case anyone wants them.

- we bought a couch on labor day! it's supposed to come next week.

- levi and i just bought tickets to go to san francisco for thanksgiving with my family! i loooove sf and can't wait for november! and trips with my family are always so much fun.

- the weekend is here! have a fantastic one!

p.s. i'm not forgetting what today is by not posting about it. i remember, and i will never forget. my heart, thoughts, and prayers are with everyone today.

10 September, 2009

our love story

i shared our love story with nicole at my teacups in peony, and it's up today!

you can check it out here.


i love trader joe's

i made this the other night - broccoli and zucchini pizza with cheddar and parmesan cheese.

it was divine.

trader joe's pizza dough is a terrific invention.

(post-edit note: my brother just looked at this post and sent me a text that said, " your pizza looks gross." ahahaha! he's such a brat. it wasn't gross.)

just say no.

i've been craving shrimp a lot lately so we went to long john silver's for lunch the other day.

please don't ever let me go there again.

no shrimp craving is strong enough.

09 September, 2009

things that make me dance

i was really excited to find a grocery store that sells frozen soft pretzels.

08 September, 2009


late start today! sorry! i'm still on vacation mode (i have today off too).

you may have noticed that we've got a couple new sponsors here at an experiment in poverty.

last week, you met sarah from magnolia family vintage, and this week i would like introduce you to:
kora from dixie lust!

kora lives in southern louisiana and is full of the sweetest southern charm. she says "nekkid" for crying out loud!

here's a little interview i did with kora so you could get to know her a bit.

how would you describe your blog?

On the surface Dixie Lust will read as personal archives about living in and discovering the South. It’s a haze of fried foods at mom and pop eateries, impromptu rock and roll shows on the back porch, and grand road trips in the spirit of Jack Kerouac. It’s New Orleans, Austin, Mobile, and Savannah – as well as Bunkie, LeBeau, and Grand Isle. It’s not “indie” and it certainly isn’t “preppy” – it’s a style all of its own. Below the surface, there’s a love affair taking place that even non-southerners can identify with. Dixie Lust is a reawakened desire for the simple things in life. It’s a story about loving life exactly where you are.

what inspired you to start dixie lust?

Maybe having a Canadian friend come down for Mardi Gras and discovering just as much as she did about my culture and heritage. Maybe it was sitting alone in the grassy field, listening to Cajun French Music at Festival International de Louisianne. Maybe it was finding myself falling for a once-farmer who lives and breathes for the wide open country. I can’t pinpoint one moment where it just came to me… This year has been a changing of heart, a journey home, for me. The art, the music, the food,…the people of the south – they’ve all captured my heart in a distinctive way. Very simply, I just felt compelled to write about the simplicity of my new found love.

why do you love blogging?

When I was a senior in high school, there was a scheduling glitch and I was thrown into a creative writing course. I went in with the worst attitude - thinking I couldn’t write anything worth reading. I wrote what I thought were stupid musings but my classmates identified with my work. They encouraged me to write more – and my teacher taught me technique. The more I learned and the more I read of their work, the harder I pushed myself. I fell in love with writing that year (and I ended up scoring at the top of my class!). It was such a sense of community – and to me that’s what blogging is about. It’s a positive place of learning and expressing your true self. It’s all about putting yourself out there and spreading your ideas and energy.

what inspires you?

The Bohemian Manifesto by Lauren Stover, fear, Anthony Bourdain, random acts of kindness, black and white photography, the beauty found in decay, yoga, wide open spaces, acoustic songs, Sucre on Magazine Street, religions of the world, folk art, fried food, honesty, the strength people of post-Katrina New Orleans show, the sounds of a fiddle, The Blue Dog by George Rodrigue, murky bayous, Bollywood movies, skylines, love, the works of Adrian Fulton, the stories of the elderly, Tolstoy, open mic night at the local art bar, blogging

and now that you have been properly introduced, head on over to dixie lust and say hello!

06 September, 2009

the newest addition to our family

levi and i adopted a little, baby kitty today!!!

we get to bring lily's new little sister home next weekend after she's been spayed and received all her shots.

she's is such a little pumpkin!

she and lily will have so much fun together.

our little girl, gretel snack-pack myers:

04 September, 2009

mail time and weekend wishes

i was a nanny, and my sister is 10 years younger, so forgive me for this:

does anyone remember the "mail time" segment on blue's clues where they sing, "we just got a letter, we just got a letter, we just got a letter. i wonder who it's from"?

'cause that's how i feel every time the mail comes.

and while we're on the subject of children's tv, i'd just like to put it out there that i love the backyardigans.

and on that completely random note, i would like to wish you all a fantastically, delightfully magical three day (four days for me - yippee skippee!) weekend from us to you!

(photo from our trip to the fair this summer)


when i look at the world around me and peer into my own heart and mind,
i know some things about my God.
i know that he's a philosopher,
a scientist,
a humanitarian,
a caregiver,
a perfectionist,
an artist.
i know that he's righteous,
hilarious (thanks ivy),
and tender.
God is inspiration.
God is hope and faith.
And above all, God is love.

giveaway winners announced!

as it turns out, sarah was feeling generous so we have not one, but two lucky winners for the magnolia family vintage giveaway.

this is how we did it:

sarah selected one winner randomly out of a hat,

and i selected the second winner randomly using random.org's number generator.

we decided that if both winners chose the same item, sarah's winner would get it, and mine would have to choose something else.

deal? deal!

okay, so without further ado, the winners!

we have the lovely adele from poptart
and the lovely kathleen from jeremy and kathleen.

congratulations, girls! i'm sure you will both make terrific use of whatever items you choose. please email me your selections and your mailing addresses.

thank you everyone for entering.

if you saw something you loved or needed over at magnolia family vintage, please be sure to bid on it. these are one of a kind vintage items, so bid now or forever hold your peace.

03 September, 2009

look what we got in the mail yesterday!

it's going to look so fantastic framed in our bedroom (or living room...still not sure)! i love it.

it's been slow going getting our house together. the delay is mostly due to the eternal couch quest.

i promise to start sharing photos of our progress once we start making some!

(btw, last day to enter the giveaway)

the school update

today is my last day of school for the week. phew. i'm exhausted!

and next week, i have monday and tuesday off.

the CSU school system has had to enforce a bunch of furlough days throughout the semester due to budget cuts. it's pretty insane. but a 4 day weekend won't be too shabby.

so here's the rundown on my tuesday/thursday classes:

french: my first day of french class - beginning french class - was conducted entirely in...what else...french. oh my gosh, it was so overwhelming. but it's gonna work! i can tell! my book for that class was $200 though. $200?!?! so ridiculous.

ballet: i have 10 minutes to get from french to ballet. it's a mile across campus. no joke. so that's pretty exhausting. and sweaty. if you follow me on twitter, you've already heard about all the sweating.

painting: i have 20 minutes to eat and get from ballet to painting all the way back to the other side of campus. that's another mile. painting is my most overwhelming class. i wish levi could do it for me. it felt like more of a foreign language than french. Lord, help me this semester!

yesterday was my first active day of my monday/wednesday classes - tennis and jazz.

one hour of tennis, including lots of drills and running.

followed by two hours of dance.

and you guessed it! i have 10 minutes in between those classes, and it's about a thousand degrees in the sun playing tennis before heading to the humid dance studios where i feel like i'm breathing sweat. so sore today.

part of me is wondering what on earth i was thinking. this semester might just kill me.

but i know i can do it. i know it!

but just in case you don't hear from me for a long time, it's most likely because i'm dead.

(p.s. last day to enter the giveaway)

02 September, 2009

fun with proust take two - erin

i am so excited for the second round of fun with proust.

this week the lovely erin from reading my tea leaves shared her answers and her favorite photo of herself with us.

i must say, reading her answers made me smile.

i really love this series. it lets us get to know each other on a different level.

(for the inspiration for this series, please see this post.)

now, onto erin!

erin was instructed to choose her very favorite photo of herself (current, old, abstract, straight forward, alone, in a group - anything goes) and to answer the following 7 questions.

1. what is your idea of perfect happiness?
perfect happiness is a green field. sunshine. bare feet. an ocean breeze. it's also crunching through fallen leaves. and apple cider. and snowfall at nighttime. it's always kisses. and chocolate is nice, too.

2. what is your most treasured possession?
my blankie. ok, fine. not really. but still, my blankie is pretty awesome.

3. what is your greatest fear?
losing the people i love.

4. which talent would you most like to have?
a kick-ass rocker-girl voice and guitar strumming skills so i could start a bluegrass band with my sisters.

5. what or who is the greatest love of your life?
i am so bad with superlatives. so i'm choosing two--my family and my james.

6. what is the trait you most deplore in yourself?
my uncanny ability to make a mountain out of a mole hill.

7. what do you value most in your friends?

and here is erin's favorite photo of herself:

i love it! thank you so much for playing, erin! if you haven't read erin's blog, please take a look here.

(p.s. don't forget to enter the giveaway right here. i accidentally rejected 14 comments yesterday at 1:00 pm PST, so check and make sure that i got yours. so sorry!)

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