Wednesday, June 24, 2009

More Cowbell!

...or pictures. 

My posts are so B-O-R-I-N-G without pictures. What's a girl to do?

...obviously take random pictures from lab and make it into a semi-coherent post.

And Voila: I give you pictures...

This is a 56 oz. (XXL) bag of regular M&Ms. It was placed on our lunch table earlier this week (or late last week, I don't remember). My labmates [myself included] will eat anything and everything. The yellow post-it with EAT only accelerated the consumption because no one had to wonder whether or not the M&Ms were up for grabs. 
Today (less than a week after the arrvival of said M&Ms) right before lunch (and just after I took a small handful) this is what the bag looked like inside:

That's right. There are about 20 M&Ms left in the bag. Needless to say they were totally gone before the rest of the group even came to the lunch table. 

...and now I'm craving candy. 

I think I should admit that although I have been eating out far less for dinner and lunch than I used to, I am by no means a cook, a baker, a chef, or anything related to it. I know, I know, you are probably thinking "but you are a chemist, you should be able to follow instructions, its just like a reaction". Maybe it is, but I'm still awful.
I did however purchase the Hungry Girl cookbook (Thanks to Kris!) and on the menu tonight is the Buffalo Chicken Choppity Chop!

I don't think this picture does this recipe all. It is going to be DELICIOUS!

Tuesday, June 23, 2009

This just in...

...I won a new blog design!!!!!!!


So long blogger template, hello customized goodness via Rachel!!!
Grasping Objectivity
Hop on over to her blog to read all about it :) 

And...this is just the kick I needed to get back on the bloggy-bus!

Any comments/suggestions will be much appreciated!

Woo-hoo! Now if only my new raincoat would come in!

Monday, June 22, 2009

Random Bits O'Crazy-ness

You know those posts that are totally cohesive and have a good general theme? 

....This isn't one of them! This is going random facts with some pictures interspersed of the past week. 

Let's start in reverse order:
1) Monday 6/15/09: I hang out with Kate and aah every Monday to watch Gossip Girl, however since the season has come to a close, the Bachelorette has filled the void. I don't know what you think, but for me watching the Bachelorette with these girls is a lot better than watching it by myself while yelling at the TV and the crazy foot-fetish-break-dance-instructor 'eligible' bachelors. However, this Monday was a particular treat because I got to meet Leonard Hamster for the first time:

Here he is on his little wheel...being absolutely adorable. I have to admit, I don't think I have ever actually met a hamster before and was pleasantly surprised to learn that he is nocturnal and that he has a very short memory. He would got to do a little walk-around, scope out his food, exercise routine, and then repeat. repeat. repeat. 

2) 6/16-6/20: B-O-R-I-N-G week. Nothing really happened, except rain. Rain happened. A lot of rain. (which led to the buying of the yam orange rain coat). 

Obviously SYTYCD was in there and I have to make a confession: I don't watch the results show. I REALLY enjoy the performances but couldn't care less about who gets kicked off...yet...I'm sure some of the dancers will grow on me.

On Wednesday I woke up, sneezed twice (fine, normal) and then sneezed again and my whole upper back froze up. I was like WTF? I had no clue what happened and was thankful that I could continue to breathe and would not be needing to call 911 because I had a punctured lung...and then I felt silly. Who injures her/himself while sneezing? So, I googled it and apparently it is more popular than one would imagine. Case in point: Sammy Sosa. If an MLB star can do it (and admit to it), then I guess it can happen to common folk like me as well. 

I have also started running in hopes of actually competing in a race (obviously this would be a race against myself and not a real competition). Right now there is no way you could call it 'running' more of a 'walk-jog' type of thing. I have done it consistently though and am planning my 1st 5k (in which I'm sure all of the power walking grandmas will beat me). I hope I stick with it. I think once you blog about it, its written in stone. Don't fret, I'll keep you informed of my progress....

3) 6/21/09: Driving range! This is my 2nd adventure to a driving range in the past 2 weeks and I have to say that I am awful. I've gotten two blisters (one from each excursion). The first time it was on my right hand, which everybody said was ok, b/c I'm a southpaw and that's where it was supposed to be. Yesterday however, I got a blister on my left pointer-finger. How does that happen?!? I have to say though, I got into the groove at the end and didn't swing-and-miss every shot. :) [real progress here people, real progress]

4) 6/22/09: After my morning exercise and shower I was getting ready to head out the door to come to school. I was about to get my lunch out of the refrigerator and then stopped dead in my tracks because I was terrified. This is what I saw:

Scary, right? At first I though he was inside my window and then thought "OMG, how do I get a squirrel out of my apt. without getting rabies?". Then I realized he had wedged himself between the screen and the window of the open skylight. 

I yelled at him and snapped my fingers and then he scurried away (sounds like a magic spell doesn't it?).  

Needless to say I managed to snap a few pics of the invader before I yell-snapped. I particularly like the shot above because either a) his tongue is out or b) his mouth is open. Either way he brought a little bit of un-welcomed excitement (but great material for blogging) to my morning.

...and with that, I am done!

Off for another round of The Bachelorette with the girls!

Friday, June 19, 2009

Bad Laura, Bad!

To my 5ish readers out there, don't fret. I'm still alive. 
My life has been way boring and I apologize I haven't posted since, SATURDAY!
 GASP! I let almost a whole week go by!
I have been watching my trashy summer TV including the Bachelorette, SYTYCD, and Wipeout...don't worry, I'm sure I'll have more to talk about regarding thee subjects.

In other news: I bought a raincoat! (Seriously people, this is the biggest excitement of the week! and the color is yam orange. Seriously.)
I have been collecting graphical abstracts for round  3 of what will hopefully be a weekly segment!
Sorry I'm not being a good blogger, *hopefully* I will bounce back swimmingly!
Until next time (which better be soon, darnit).....

Saturday, June 13, 2009

Graphical Abstracts: Round 2!

Back as promised for round 2 of interesting and crazy graphical abstracts from the world of chemistry. 
(for a background and to see the selection from last week click here). 

This week didn't have as many eye-popping pictures...but I think its because I'm actually looking for them, so as a note to any authors out there, pick crazy graphical abstracts!! It makes for easier blogging!

Now, onto the show:

Even though they had pacman in the title, they decided to include a picture of him superimposed behind the macrocycle, just in case we forgot what he looked like.

I'm not really sure what this is supposed to tell me. I would guess that, yes indeed this is a picture of water (a crazy picture of water, but water none the less), however I would not have gotten: "Catalysts based on Amino Acids for Asymmetric Reactions in Water" out of this. Also,the subtitle is "Wet and Wild" which is just downright silly.

I think this is a strawberry. In reading the abstract and introduction of this paper, I still don't know why they have a super zoomed in strawberry in the graph. ab. (other than the fact that Botrytis cinerea is the cause of gray mold in plants).

So. Stinkin.' Cute!....but, why? Is the lizard's tongue catalyzing the reaction with his saliva? Nope, not quite: "Taking advantage of the chameleonic ability of sulfones to be transformed into different functionalities...."  Oh. A chameleon. Ok, I guess I get it....isn't he so cute?

And finally, this one was alluded to in the subtitle post earlier in the week, and actually I kinda like it. Its out there, don't get me wrong, but with a subtitle of "2009: A Boraanthracene Odysessy" you just can't help but let your inner geek shine.

That's all for this week. Hopefully some wacky pics will come my way via google reader in the week to come!

Thursday, June 11, 2009

Zack Morris Lives!

By now I'm sure you have all seen/heard of this (except for my mom), but Zack Morris showed up to Jimmy Fallon Monday night. 
Zack Morris or Mark-Paul Gosselar? It was so Zack Morris alright! Oh, snap!

Complete with the Saved By The Bell theme song, Zack-isms, early 90s attire, 'Time-Outs' and of course the Zack Morris Cellphone

By now my mom, one of my 3 readers, is surely shaking her head in disgust because we [my sister and me] weren't 'allowed' to watch Saved By The Bell.

The reason? Zack didn't treat women with respect. 

Seriously. Nevermind Jessie Spano being an abusive girlfriend to Slater...

Needless to say we watched it anyways and loved every minute of Bayside High including afternoon visits to The Max for cheeseburgers and milkshakes.

There was really no point to this post, just my sheer giddiness due to a Saved By The Bell reunion that might happen on Jimmy Fallon.


Wednesday, June 10, 2009

UP in 3D!

I've seen quite a few movies recently (Star Trek, Angels and Demons, and The Hangover)..and now I can successfully add UP (in 3D of course) to my summer movie seeing marathon!

The previews do not do this movie justice! I was thinking, oh cute a Disney/Pixar movie, sure I'll see it...but its SOOO much more than that!

Its heartwarming. You'll laugh, you'll cry, you'll laugh some more. 

Yes Dug, the dog with the talking dog collar is as cute and silly as can be, but there's more! There's so much more! 

I feel like Disney has always done a good job of providing moral/life lessons....
-Don't judge a book by its cover
-Lying won't get you anywhere in the end
-Hard work pays off
-Value friendships and family
-Trust/believe in yourself

Without giving anything away Up had a different sort of message, a message I'm not too sure young children will understand, but a great opportunity for parents (or relatives, or teachers, or anyone) to explain it to them when the opportunity arises. 

...and don't you think that Carl Fredricksen is the cutest pixar character ever?

Only downside?...the $14.75 price tag that came with the ticket and 3D glasses! :(

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Subtitles from Angewandte...oh dear.

Angewandte = Applied (in German)
Angewandte Chemie = Applied Chemistry....and also a chemistry journal that along with crazy graphical abstracts also contains subtitles that feature puns, movie titles, and other silly phrases.

Its only fitting that I share some of them (from the past week) with you. 
I didn't have to search hard for these they are ALL from the last 7 days!

Now without any further ado....

1Gettin’ a little sugar—no alcohol required (<-- My personal favorite!!!)
2. Pincers do something for U that sandwiches don't
3. A click by any other name
4. Unstable? We’re Able!
5. Al together now! (This is not misspelled)
6.  Strike while the iron’s hot
7. Getting their feet wet
8. Water molecules doing time
9. Going fishing!
10. 2009: A boraanthracene odyssey (Seriously, this is what it said. The pic to go with it is great too! It'll be up later this week!)

So maybe these aren't haha funny, just dorky funny, but I still enjoyed them immensely!

(All subtitles from Angewandte Chemie. Int. Ed. early view)

Monday, June 8, 2009

The Hangover

Since I have chronicled all of the other summer movies I've seen so far, it would only be fair to continue this trend. Remember, however, I like movies, the good, the bad, and in this case the laugh so hard you regret getting the diet soda in fear of bladder control issues.

The Hanover
Rated: R


This movie reminded me why I like to go the movies: to be entertained, to think 'OMG, this is crazy' and to laugh my ass off while doing so.

It was kind of a spur-of-the-moment decision to go, but boy am I glad I did. The previews looked funny, but all too many times I've seen previews for funny movies and lo and behold, the only funny parts were in the previews. This was NOT the case, HILARIOUS through and through.

...and, Bradley Cooper is yummy.

An Etsy Interruption

Oh Etsy.
How did it take me until June 4th, 2009 to peruse your charming online marketplace full of homemade and vintage goods???

I mean, I had 'kind of' heard of Etsy before, but never gave it much thought...until 3 days ago!!!
I bought two (2) wayyy cute headbands featured here and here

It was a bit overwhelming, but if you know what you are looking for, then you are in luck for sure!

I am thinking it would be perfect for a bride-to-be (which would be approximately 0 of my current readers).

And...I think a certain Art teacher-best friend-whose-name-will-be-spelled-out-if-needed, should consider setting up an Etsy shop of her own. (Hint Hint!!!)

The Artist in question (and me!) circa 2007

So what can someone buy/sell on Etsy?
Bags & Purses
Jewelry (<-- Wayyy awesome!)
Paper goods
...and so much more!

Friday, June 5, 2009

NC Part 3: Mylapalooza!

This is the 3rd and final installment of the NC series (you can catch up on the adventure by reading parts 1 & 2).

My one-and-only sister made the trek from Ohio to North Carolina with a 2 year old (in a car for 9 hours). I would tell y'all she is crazy, but from what I hear Myla was a perfect angel in the car. Funny how those terrible two's come and go...

Name: Myla Regan
Age: 2
Occupation: Toddler
Interests: Pools, Spongebob, and meow-meows (aka cats)

Sporting an adorable sun-dress for a perfect day in North Carolina

Petting a horse in Old Salem

I'm sure her nose just 'itched' in this picture. 
She's a lady through-and-through

Showing the world its never too early to pick up on fashion trends, taking the over sized purse fad to the extreme!

Finally, something that is her size.

Doing her best 'meow-meow' impersonation. 

Taking after her Aunt Laura with the no-shirt while eating messy foods trend. Fortunately I grew out of this before I started dating (much to my parents relief), and I'm sure she will too! ;)

I'm willing to bet she enjoyed her 1st out of state visit especially after the trip to the kiddie-water-park @ the YWCA. "I PooOOool, I PoOoL" was all we heard for about 2 hours, which coincidentally sounded a lot like something else no toddler (or anyone for that matter) should ever do while in a pool. 

Thursday, June 4, 2009

NC Part 2: Family Ties

Back as promised for round 2 of my North Carolina visit!

While Part 1 featured the real reason for traveling to the Tar Heel state, part 2 is going to focus on the people that made the visit so special. <3

My Aunt Mart and Cousin K on her graduation!

The boys looking quite dapper!

Look who made the trek from Ohio! My amazing sister and adorable niece Myla!

Siblings @ graduation lunch in Old Salem

(I stick out like a sore thumb in this pict for 2 reasons 1) I missed the blue/neutral memo and 2) I am way short. My 12 year old cousin E is almost as tall as I am!)

How adorable are they? Wayyy adorable is the correct answer ;)

Siblings sporting the shades. 
(look @ that, alliteration in action!)

The girls! 
(again, my short stature is quite noticable! I think I need to go dress shopping. In all of my recent pics I've been wearing this dress.)

Photo-Op w/the graduation cake!

Coming your way tomorrow? NC Part 3:Mylapalooza. Did you really think that I spent an entire weekend with my niece and only snapped one picture of her? Ha, you are sadly mistaken....

Wednesday, June 3, 2009

NC Part 1: University of North Carolina...High School!?!

Yes, yes...this does exist:
The University of North Carolina School of the Arts (UNCSA) High School. 
(Google it, wikipedia it, see for yourself! I am not lying to you!)

It just so happens that my B-E-A-utiful and talented cousin K graduated from this prestigious school almost a week ago and I got to hop on a plane and spend a glorious weekend with my family!

Friday Night? Garden party for graduates and family!

Haha, a picture of the graduate! (I couldn't resist). Showing off her now 3D-less 3D glasses!

Guess who was giving a Q&A (as an honorary degree recipient and speaker) right around the corner???!!??

Kristin Chenoweth! Oh My Goodness!
Do my eyes deceive me?!? 

Nope, its really her. That's right, the star of Wicked, Pushing Daisies, Mrs. Noodle on Sesame Street....and...

...coming this Fall to Fox on Glee! :)
(I will do a post on that gem of a show at a later date, mark your calendars!)

Saturday = Graduation of course!

This isn't your classic high school graduation....unless your high school has:
a) no dress code for commencement, 
b) Harry Potter-esque diploma delivery to the stage via a professor dressed as Dumbledore complete with Fog, magic wand, and the HP theme song! 
c) KRISTIN CHENOWETH (ok, so she really spoke at the college graduation, but still...)

The UNCSA class of '09!

Diplomas being delivered to the stage!

Cousin K getting her diploma :)

Part 2 coming your way tomorrow! Get ready for family photo overload <3

Graphical Abstracts: The good, the bad, and the ??!!!??

Ah chemistry journals, you provided me with ample blog worthy material today as I scrolled through my google reader.

For those of you familiar with chemistry journals [all except maybe 3 of my 7 readers] skip on down to the pics!
(Go ahead, you're not missing anything, I promise!)
Ok non-chemistry folk, you may or may not know that all relevant chemistry journals are available online to peruse at our will. As graduate students we are supposed to keep up-to-date by reading these journals so we can know what's going on in the chemistry world around us. 

In order to catch your attention the author of an article provides a reaction equation or some other graphic to represent the chemistry and give the reader a concept of the article as a whole. (It also makes it way easy to skim to find the important stuff) <-- This is the 'Graphical Abstract'

The most common graphical abstracts are reaction equations:

It's simple, but it gets the idea across.

Some people are a bit more creative:

An equation with a bit of flair mixed in. I'll take it!

Sustainable lithium-ion batteries? I see what you are going for here...

Another popular option: A collage like this one on fluoride recognition and sensing pulling together the chemistry and everyday life.

Others, however, decide go in a different direction:

I don't know about you, but this picture makes me want play Atari, oh and have CONTROL! In no way am I thinking about 'Self Fabricating Polyoxometelate Microtubes' 

This one makes my head hurt...and..nope, that's it, nothing else. But for those of you who want to look at this for longer than 2 seconds, you may find there is no route from (1) to (10) in the maze. Maybe that's the point? [I could be wrong about this, I did it quickly]

Seriously?!? Is it a pictograph? 'Isonitriles are stinky, but reacting  isonitirles and benzoxazole with n-butyl lithium and RCOX will smell like a cherries?' 

...And this is where it is good to have common sense enough to know that little rats and syringes aren't being reacted with alkynes to give 'starred' triazoles with pickles attached. 

Feel free to sound-off in the comments below!

...and I'm going to *try* to make this a weekly post because it was wayyyy too fun!