Monday, January 16, 2017

Quick Trip to Dallas and the East Coast

Flew into Dallas Texas for a quick trip for ABL. It was surprisingly pretty awesome. I didn't have much expectations of Dallas but it turned out to be one of the best trips on tour so far. The hotel driver took us on a quick tour of downtown and the architecture and tiny parks in the city were beautiful.

puffy clouds view from the airplane to dallas

We got to have a quick bite and play games with the crew before a hectic work day in the AM at Kung Fu Saloon. It was so fun. Nothing better than old school arcade games that touch our heartstrings from the 80s and 90s growing up. Mortal combat, street fighter, PAC man, centipede, etc and all free to play. I saw and played my first shuffleboard game. It was so much fun I wanted one at home but know that it wouldn't be as fun if we have it versus the occasional fun.

shuffleboard game at kung fu saloon dallas texas

Work day was at Gilley's and the venue was a really great place to work in. Everything went quickly which made it a fast in and out.  We actually had a chance to go the the Modern Museum Fort Worth to catch the last week of the Kaws exhibit..it was AMAZING!!!

Gilley's pre-show:
Gilley's Dallas venue before the crazy

Kaws at the Modern:
kaws gumby

kaws companion wood pieces

kaws bunny

vince at the base of kaws cookie monster

Got to try fuel city tacos for a late night snack after work and I couldn't believe how crazy busy the lines were. People standing out in the 30 degree cold for tacos. It was amazing. Beef fajita tacos for sure!!!

2am snacks after work (Photo credit: Kat)
Fuel City Tacos Dallas Texas Gas Station

3 hours of sleep and back on the plane to Raleigh for a quick day trip with love who took me out on a date for dinner. It was so sweet to have him be so thoughtful especially in all the craze over the last six months. We hadn't had a moment to spend doing anything special because of work but it was the sweetest surprise when he took me to dinner and I didn't know that was the plan lol. I cried. It's always the little things that make everything worth it.  Forever grateful.

Ember the Golden Retriever puppy

Back on a plane, 24 hours later, off to Denver. Not enough time. Wish I could have gotten out of the airport. It was lightly snowing and so beautiful. The architecture in the airport was so beautiful and it was insanely busy. It reminded me of the Tokyo crossing where everyone was coming from all directions on the move. NFL Sunday so it was a busy crazy evening with so much energy. Can't wait to go back to Denver to explore one day.

architecture inside Denver Airport
NFL sunday waiting for the airplane

Home with family and playing pillow fight was just the perfect ending to the evening. I forget how much we have to be grateful for majority of the time because I focus so much on the weight that we carry until I see those little shining moments and it smacks me in the face reminding me that we have the best as tough as it gets. ❤❤

Thursday, January 12, 2017

Getting Ready for Travels

The last 11 days has been a blur of work and work preparing for Mathew's museum exhibit in time for the flight to Dallas for ABL. It's finally finished and ready to go. A few minor hiccups but so relieved. Kathi came to visit and help us out with the boys so it's been so nice having her company and help. Nothing better than family. Super super grateful.

kathi production make your city wild

Off to Dallas and the east coast for a quick trip for Art beats and lyrics and make Your City Wild giveaways for the museum. Will post pics of the travels soon.

Finished in time for a little break with the kids at the beach
breather for the beach with kids at Redondo Beach
 I get to wake up to the sweetest love notes from my love
my love's love notes for me

Some of the giveaways for the east coast for Make Your City Wild:
spray painted stencil woodcut animals

make your city wild giveaways

Friday, January 6, 2017

10,000 Black Petals

Love had a last minute creative idea to add on 10,000 spray painted black petals on the center floor.  Means the last month has  been non stop cutting and painting the flowers.  Been working all day to get them done and we are only halfway there.  Crossing fingers that we can get them finished by next week.  The cold weather hasn't been helping it dry fast enough and it just added an extra step to the process having to let them dry longer and using the heat gun to help it go a little quicker.

Here is a little clip on what the process is like.  The whole process is easy but time consuming having to lay out each petal, paint, heat, flip over, paint, heat, dry and pick up to start all over again.  Trying to do a few hundred at a time to make each batch worth the dry time.  This clip is 1,000 of 10,000:

Monday, January 2, 2017

Optimistic Year Ahead

We ended the year accomplishing most of what we had hoped for.  Way more than we expected considering how behind everything was.  Most of what needed to get done with the looming deadlines were finished except the painting of the petals.  Today marked 2 weeks and it all the petals are finally cut.  Now on to the task of painting the last remaining half...only about 5000 petals to paint in the next 10 days..TOTALLY DOABLE!

The boys did such an awesome job painting the shipping containers...(photo: Mat)
Cassie and Kids California Shipping Crate





Some of the petals:
10,000 spray painted wisteria petals stencils

Luckily, the shipping pickup was delayed which gave us a day to celebrate Rocket's bday early and take a mini sunrise road trip out toe Wrightwood to play in the snow.  It has been almost a year since we last went to play in any sort of snow and it was so nice to spend even just a few hours outdoors with the kids..even if it meant coming back home and spending the rest of the day working.

Buddy the Bison from the National Park Trust program got to explore Wrightwood with us =)
National Park Trust Buddy Bison Program exploring Wrightwood Snow Mountains

Family snowman
Cassie Mathew kids Wrightwood family snow day

The boys had fun all winter break doing what they wanted and learning how to work at the same time..but we ended up not spending much time outdoors and that really hurts my heart.  Being outdoors and exploring and showing the kids the importance of nature is a huge deal for me..if anyone knows me that is most important.  I always want to be a good example to them and hope that seeing a parent exercising and staying healthy all the time will rub off on them as they grow older.  I haven't been able to show them that the last year with all my recurring back and feet pains..and work after work..2017 means changing some things even in the smallest of ways to getting back the good habits and instilling lessons in them =)

Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Reflecting on the Year

2016 is coming to an end.  It's been a long and challenging year.  So many things to worry about with family and life and it's been another crazy year.  As it is coming to an end, it is nice to look back at everything we've been thrown at us and how far we've come to overcome all the tough times, exceptionally stressful times and come out stronger than ever. 

There are moments when we reflect at how much the boys push the limits as far as patience and sometimes seeing the ugliness that shows up in ourselves that we never knew we had hidden. But it never changes that we all push through and find the glimmer of smiles somewhere. Even the smallest light is a light that shines through all the tough situations.

Earlier this year we took a quick break from work to drive to Huntington Beach to get out of the house
Family selfie at Huntington Beach earlier this year

They loathe and love these install days LOL
Team One Gallery install for Mathew

We have been through so many obstacles and it helps so much when it comes to standing strong together when things are extremely hard. Whether it's financially, emotionally, or the immense amount of work that piles up, we have become a pretty formidable team (kids included) when it comes to everyday life. It's been so hectic and nonstop everyday has been filled with work after work. 18+ hour days and no day off. Kids help us whenever they can and it's nice to see them learn new things.  But we always manage to fit in time, even a short amount, to smile and even share a few moments with friends from out of town.  Even if it was a quick minute, it is always nice to see friends even if it mostly work related hahahahah =)  We keep hoping to find even an hour to have a quick date since we never get to spend any time together outside of work and work meetings..every spare moment we get we try to do something with the boys so they get QT but then we end up never having time to spare for ourselves..we have our sights set on the near future when time frees up a little...=)

Mat hard at work
The intricate tedious process that is Mathew Curran's artwork

Helping him make 10000 petals
helping Mathew make 10000 spray painted petals for his musem exhibit

only a handful of the 10000 petals in progress
Some of the 10000 spray painted stencils

All the boys refused to get in the photo on a rare dinner at the B house =)

Long workday starts with bfast from the biggest Mcdonald's in Chicago (photo credit: Kat)
Grabbing a quick breakfast in Chicago before the longest work day at the biggest Mcdonalds

Haven't seen them in almost 3 years since I left Hawaii..it was so nice to see her again and it's like no time has passed
Reuniting with my best friend in almost 3 years

So nice to see Aaron in Miami..even when he's a mile away we see him across the country! LOL (photo credit: Aaron)
So nice to see Aaron in Miami at his drink and draw

Earlier this year she came to visit with her family and I got to see her for a few hours..oh how I missed her
My best friend from Hawaii

We're gearing up for a pretty hectic January but looking forward to the time we do get to do road trips and camping!  We have big plans this coming year. Can't wait for all the activities we'd like to do as a family. And spend more quality time enjoying the good moments. The boys need more outdoor time and we do too. Reconnecting with nature is so important and disconnecting from the world of electronics is even more important.

Can't wait for the return of these family bike rides
Sunrise family bike rides along the beach

Redondo beach sunset bike rides

Merry Christmas ya filthy animals!
Christmas nerf battles at the Jo Curran house

Baking in between work breaks sometimes clears the head and produces yummy apple coffee cake
Baking apple coffee cake and enjoying Illy coffee

Monday, November 14, 2016

Chicagoooooo

Oh how I love Chicago. We only had one day to explore there but it was lovely. Well, we had a night before work to explore a little. Work all day the next day. Then have one full day to explore. As much as I wish we had more time and could afford to have two or three days in a city to explore, I'm grateful we even had one day to do that. Lucky my mom was visiting and could watch the boys for a couple days to get work done. And for my good friend from Lulu who came and helped out for a night. What would we do without everyone in our lives?

We are not very touristy. Sometimes I wish one of us was into all the tourist things to do because then we'd have a better plan but we both never have any ideas what we want to do when we go to a city. We do love to eat so we always try to find little gems that are must eats in the cities. Preferably little hole in the wall places. Other Han that we just end up walking around the city and exploring. Seeing the architecture and stopping for a coffee or snack along the way. We both loved Chicago a lot. It was gorgeous and very diverse. We did go to Cloud Gate at Milennium Park. We stayed for a few minutes with a friend but then off we went.

Cloud Gate Millenium Park Chicago bean

Chicago Millenium Park

My Love's beautiful artwork left for someone to grab =)
Make Your City Wild in Chicago pigeon Stencil woodcut by Mathew Curran

Peaceful protests
Passing the cops at near the hotel watching the Trump Protestors


The weather was cold but we knew hard going there. There was a character to the city that was much different from New York. We couldn't put our finger on it but we found it to be very appealing and inviting. We definitely want to go back again with the boys and have them experience it. Maybe it was the waft of slightly burnt  chocolate chip cookies that we would smell around every corner that was inviting. Hahaha. We tried to figure out what the smell was and googled it. Seemed no one had a definite answer but it came down to a possibility that it was a chocolate factory on kinzie street.

The deep dish pizza was not exactly our favorite but did try it and it was yummy. Just not the kind of pizza I prefer.  We DID take a quick dinner break while working to walk to Little Goat Diner which was absolutely fuckin amazing. If there was one place we have to return to again, it would be there. The place was cozy and busy and our server Anthony was the best. I'd ask for his table again for sure =)

Quick break in Chicago at Little Goat Diner

yummy latte's at Intelligentsia Coffee

I realize it's been months since my last post and I do hope to get back to the groove. More about food and cooking and traveling. We just have had so much happening and no downtime this year. The boys have had lots going on too and we just find it hard to even sit down and relax for an hour every night without passing out to repeat the day. Hahahaha.