END OF CHRISTMAS + YEAR IN REVIEW

YEAR IN REVIEW
JANUARY
+ Started the year off with a Guru Josh Project concert.
+- Started my last semester in college. Scared, anxious, excited.
++12 Started my internship at the Ringling College Design Center.
- My beautiful queen cat died.
+ Senior year felt awesome.

FEBRUARY
+ Intellectually challenging friendship with Jaime.
+ Started hanging around Sarita 24/7.
+ Got into the International Design Summit 2010.
+ Partied it up quite a bit.
+ Lots of photoshoots.
+ Jello shots with Nicole and drinking games with Sarita’s friends.
+ Enjoyed a few romantic encounters.
+ “My love, you taste of cigarettes..”
+ Enjoying Design Center life.
+ Sarasota Renaissance Festival.
- “People were really surprised you got into Design Center. They didn’t think you were good enough. [Thanks for rubbing it in…]

MARCH
+ Commencement came together.
+ Dark Nature started evolving into something.
+ New phone! Motorola Cliq XT.
+ Encouraging presentation by Moonbot Studios.
+ AFI concert. Best. Concert. Ever!

APRIL
+ Tamashi’s birthday came around, sent him a little card.
+ Weekend getaway at the Rajpathak manor.
+ 30 Seconds to Mars concert in Miami.
- Missed the HIM concert two days prior.
+ Kick-Ass and dinner dates with Gyo. Fun times.
- Too many all-nighters and walking around campus like a zombie.

MAY
+- My last encounter. Bittersweet.
+ I graduated from Ringling College of Art and Design. At last!
+- Bittersweet good-byes and see-you-laters.
+ Purchased my iMac + CS5 with hard-earned freelance savings.
++ My first date with Tamashi. So shy!
++ “Would anyone be up for an adventure in Japan with me? I am seriously considering the option sometime next year... We will see.” Accomplished this year. Yay!
   
JUNE
- Found it hard to settle into the graduate life.
- Stressin’ about finding a job.
+ Walking on the clouds for a little while. Enjoyed my romance with Tamashi.
+ Partied it up pretty hard.
+ Fell in love with champagne.
+ Moo.com interview.
+ First time at Soprano’s.

JULY
++ Good times at my second Soprano’s party.
+- Cyanide Nation photoshoot. Just kind of hung out and exchanged ideas with Will. Accompanied Tamashi. Last time I saw Tamashi in person.
- Just kind of floating around without a job and a purpose.

AUGUST
+ Escapade to Orlando. This opened my eyes to the fact that I was being conformist. It served as a reminder that I should fight for what I want.
+ Issued my driver’s license.
- Partied a little too hard!
+- Forced myself to move around and seek a job again.
+ Started hanging out with Hermes, an old acquaintance from 2004.

SEPTEMBER
++ I got a job at Encuentros Mágicos.
+ Fun birthday party, saw Malabares play.
+ Hanging with Hermes.
++++ Escape to Japan for two weeks. The most amazing trip of my life!
+ Met Almond.
  
OCTOBER
++ Enjoying the working world.
+ Started my metaphysical studies.
+ Rokkin’ birthday celebration.
+- Surprise encounter with Jean
++ Launch of Samhain Moon.

NOVEMBER
++ Tarot workshops.
+ Wrapped up Bésame/Kiss Me line.
+ Sweet dinner dates.
+ Blog progress.
+ Started a formal relationship with Jean.

DECEMBER
+ Dexter season finale.
+ Mom's birthday.
+ Got my first car.
+ Christmas at Jean's.
++ New goals for a new year!



 
(1) DESCRIBE 2010 IN THREE WORDS:INTENSE. EYE-OPENING. FAST-PACED. 
(2) WHICH CONCERTS DID YOU VISIT IN 2010?GURU JOSH PROJECT. STEVE AOKI. DEADMAU5. AFI. 30 SECONDS TO MARS.MALABARES. [ALMOST SAW DEFTONES, BARONESS, MASTODON, AND HIM.]
(3) WHAT WERE YOUR THREE FAVORITE MOMENTS IN 2010?

(A) Graduation march. I was so dazed, I just floated towards my diploma. 
(B) Getting my first car.
(C) Spending post-Thanksgiving and Christmas in the Zúñiga-Luna residence.
(4) WHICH ONE WAS YOUR FAVORITE MONTH?
SEPTEMBER/OCTOBER TRANSITION. I went to Japan, came back and found myself employed and living a great life!
(5) WHO WERE THE MOST INFLUENTIAL PEOPLE OF 2010?
SARITA- This girl was around me day and night from February to May. In October I made the decision to conclude our friendship because of radioactive it turned out to be.
GEORGE- A crush that carried over from 2006. It began in 2006 and was never really clear until 2010, but I was really satisfied with it. Cool friend and down-to-Earth guy, in the end I felt much more at ease around him. Good times.
CHARLOTTE- There’s something about you that keeps me grounded. You make me reassured that I can’t let my mind fall asleep, and that I need to keep pushing forward. I’m sorry we have been having fallouts.
KURAN TAMASHI/JEAN CARLO- The cycle lasted a little under a year, starting in October and ending officially in mid August, and picking back up again in November. You have the right mix that makes me feel electric and burning with passion. It took me a long time to understand the circumstances, but I do now and I’m still here to offer you a helping hand. I care about you so much, count on me for anything.
ALMOND- Our encounter was really pretty brief, but it was well-lived. It was a great time for us to meet and exchange dreams. I’ll never forget the long conversations and good laughs shared at the café’s and in the metro.
HERMES- A loyal friend in such an unusual pair. Undoubtedly we are two very different people from completely alien worlds, but we get along fine and we learned a lot from each other’s differences. His cynical side rubbed onto me a little, now I am more cautious around people in general.
PATRICIA- My mentor in the esoteric realm and in metaphysics, to whom I am so very grateful for all the opportunities she offered me. She changed my life for the better and gave me a vocation to work towards. Thank you!
(6) HAVE YOU MADE PLANS FOR TRAVELING IN 2011?
Mmm… My eyes are set westward bound, on California.
(7) BEST BOOK YOU READ IN 2010?
I read blogs rather than books.
(8) 5 MUSICIANS YOU LISTENED TO WAY TOO MUCH IN 2010:
STING AND THE POLICE
DEFTONES
GENGHIS TRON
AND ONE
MASTODON
AFI
THE BIRTHDAY MASSACRE
Getting back into the oldies!
(9) WHAT DO YOU LOOK FORWARD TO IN 2011?
(A) Moving out of Puerto Rico for once and for good. The tropics were fun but I think it’s time I went and found my real home.
(B) Keeping this journal alive and breaking monotony.
(C) Finding a job that settles me in a new location and challenges my conceptual skills.

IN RETROSPECT,
Most of this year revolved around three boys, and then I kind of snapped out of it in the last quarter of the year and got my gears running. The death stage I go through every summer gauged out a lot of time that would have been better spent making plans happen. This year brought me a lot of sadness and frustration but I emerged stronger than I was when it all started. Now I know better than to prioritize for all the wrong reasons, and even though I was aware of it before, I won’t allow myself to do it now. Not over anyone.

01. St. Andrew's Cross
02. People I Admire
03. Guest Reading
04. Playlisting 
05. Promise to Write and Share Daily Accomplishments
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SARITA'S GIFT + CRAFTY CHRISTMAS

This week has been quite eventful for me! It started with an unexpected visit from my boyfriend followed by a  job interview, my Mother's birthday, preparations to get my very first car, meeting a long-lost aunt of mine along with her family, crafty present wrapping, margaritas, and now a roadtrip with my boyfriend to spend some time with his family. How's that for a 180 degree spin on Christmas?

Merry Christmas, 'errbody!

A VERY SPECIAL, UNEXPECTED CHRISTMAS GIFT
I've never received something quite like this, much less overseas... but it is invaluable to me when I think about the care invested in the craft and the time spent mulling the details over. I took my time to open this unexpected present, running my fingers over the paper and contemplating the way it was packaged... as I always will, that's just my passion as a graphic designer. Thank you, Sarita!





For each layer I peeled back, I took a picture of the ritual of opening the present. I found a teal blue [my favorite color is terrestrial teal] scroll with meticulous handwriting. The sentiments contained within made me cry more than once, by luck I didn't spill any tears on it.








 Oh, neat! Now this part killed me. Inside the journal that Sarita made herself, [with flawless attention to detail, if I may add,] she posted little random thoughts and drawings that reminded her of me in one way or another. By now I was a heavy mixture of laughs, smiles, and cries. 










I'm such a sap, aren't I? Regardless, sentiments are the quickest way into my heart. I life through other people's experiences as if they were my own sometimes. Something to watch out for...

Here are close-ups on some presents I wrapped for my special outing to the Zúñiga-Luna residence. I really invested a lot of care and affection into these, I hope they are well received!



I'm missing a shot I took of my Mother's present, which is my favorite after Jean Carlo's. : ]

My life has been so active lately and so well documented visually that I think I may be able to cross out two goals for 2011 faster than I expected to.

COMING UP:
01. St. Andrew's Cross
02. People I Admire
03. Guest Reading
04. Playlisting 
05. Goals for 2011

WISH LIST + WORKS IN PROGRESS

Lately I have been really focused on my creative endeavors, as well as on my boyfriend. Tonight I'm heading out for a karaoke session with my mother's co-workers. This seems to be turning into a tradition of sorts, and who knows... I may even get the chance to read some tarot for them!


A FUN LITTLE WISH LIST:
A more practical wish list would include the following:
01. Celebrating alongside friends and family.
02. Visiting my sister Rebeca and her family.
03. A new job opportunity or some new clients.
04. A new beginning, whether in the US or elsewhere.

I'm excited! Next week is my mother's birthday, shortly followed suit by a second visit to the Zúñiga Luna residence in Juana Díaz.  Can't wait!


MY WORKS IN PROGRESS:
Here's a sneak peak in case you're wondering what I've been up to in the design world. All works are my intellectual property save for 01, which is the original Encuentros Mágicos identity. 




 I am really lucky to be a part of such a cooperative team. Can't truly express my gratitude in words, Encuentros Mágicos has helped me grow in many areas.

COMING UP:
01. St. Andrew's Cross
02. People I Admire
03. Guest Reading
04. Playlisting 
05. Goals for 2011
♡♡

Makeover + The Modern-Day Dreamer

Guess who got a massive haircut... This one just lost three inches of hair!
This has been a crazy-explosive week!! I've gone from running with creative endeavors to a very bright social life, to an uncomfortable situation with matters of the heart. Regardless, I find life after college graduation very fulfilling. Thank God! 

Been practicing my tarot skills at social outings instead of burning up my own fortune with spread after spread. Sometimes I'd just like to let my facts be. There will be some guest speakers recruited for spreads, so if you're interested in having your cards read, shoot me an e-mail at nicaleelah@gmail.com. I'd be very happy to offer some free online tarot readings for the time being. [Keep in mind I'm busy and on the run, so I'm only taking one guest per week.]


Zara has my favorite fashion displays.
 Cheering on some karaoke singers.

THE MODERN-DAY DREAMER: 
You see us at coffee shops with an open sketch, scoping out the art section on magazine stands, watching passersby at the mall, checking out Ren fairs, and getting lost in the music at clubs. Almost united enough to become a diverse subculture, we are dreamers.

CHARACTERISTICS OF A MODERN-DAY DREAMER:
- Die-hard romantic
- Hyperanalytical
- Pensive

Ranging from the brightest optimist to the most brooding hermit, dreamers spend much of their waking time with trains of thought occupying their minds. At times, these minds are so active that they prove difficult to silence into slumber. People who find even the simplest daily functions instill curiosity over mechanics or links by experiences harbored in the mind.

Metaphysicists live in the present.
Business men live in the future.
Dreamers live in moments suspended in time, transcending past, present, and future.

Memories and sensory experiences intertwine. This is how I can best describe what creativity feels like to me, an active day dreamer.

COMING UP:
01. St. Andrew's Cross
02. People I Admire
03. Work in Progress
04. Playlisting 
05. Goals for 2011

End of Thanksgiving + The Three Sevens

Whoa, it's surreal to realize a full week has gone by already! My little roadtrip to Juana Díaz was quite sweet. We made a couple of brief stops before the Zúñiga Luna residence.. I had the chance to meet one of Jean's best friends and his sweet mother, which I've been looking forward to meet since we dated in the summer. Whoa! Surreal moments ensued, full of laughter and soft teasing. The food was great, so was the company... I had a great time.




TO-DO LIST:
01. Send final files out to the press.
02. Illustrate the Archangel candles.
03. Finish the set of horoscope icons.
04. Brand InMarket + business cards.
05. Get crafting.

21 CARD POST; THE THREE SEVENS
I need a progress spread to shed some light on how things are going, everything is moving at a quick pace and it is time to recollect some thoughts. Again, this spread shares insight on the recent past, the things happening in the next couple of days, and the near future. I made no question in specific; pretty much decided to keep it general although I did keep two aspects in mind that interest me. The three cycles read as stories depicted from left to right.

PAST:
(01) IV of Swords: Taking a break, finding peace after conflict.
(02) V of Wands: Rivalry, conflict. Stay strong before adversity.
(03) VIII of Swords: Damned if I move, damned if I don't. A posing threat, an obstacle to overcome.
(04) VIII of Cups: Shedding old relationships. A leap of faith into the unknown or uncertain.
(05) Queen of Cups: To develop a romance or solve a problem of love.
(06) III - Empress: Abundance, growth, love, prosperity.
(07) Ace of Wands: New spark of energy for a new passion.
Interpretation: After recent conflicts within the past two months, I had my rest and I restored my energy, only to face more problems coming my way. I was afraid to make a decision because I didn't want to get hurt until recently, when I decided to cut one of the ties out of my life. In effect, I sought further nourishment of a past relationship and took a chance with it. I healed, I loved, and I found a new spark of energy to propel that relationship forward.


PRESENT:
(08) II - High Priestess: Giving the idea form. Revealed truth.
(09) Knight of Wands: A charismatic guy of darker skin, active in the situation.
(10) X of Wands: Used up all the energy from the ace. Being boss, having control over everything, but being drained by the effort.
(11) Knight of Cups: Dreamy, sensitive, moody, isolated guy.
(12) VIII of Pentacles: Being the apprentice, starting over. Making mistakes, learning from them, working hard.
(13) XVII - The Star: Positive change for the future.
(14) King of Cups: New but mature love. Dedication.
Interpretation: As the rubble starts to settle, things currently seem to be cooling down. One finds the time to recollect himself and stay at peace, while the rival looks for solace and a new beginning. Overall, everyone is busy doing what they need to in order to move on with their lives, including me. The outcome looks to be not only positive, but also promising. Here's to not messing that up!


FUTURE:
(15) Page of Wands: Charismatic, acting young for his age. May antagonize.
(16) VI of Cups: Frozen moment of perfection. A solution may be found in the past for the present situation.
(17) IV - The Emperor: Aries, sun sign. Being direct and guileless, and often all too irresistible. Sitting on the throne of representation, yet feeling bound to it as a trap.
(18) XII The Hanged Man: Making a sacrifice, seeing things from a different point of view.
(19) King of Pentacles: Taking a business approach, making negotiations.
(20) Page of Pentacles: A message of luck.
(21) VI of Swords: Leaving difficulties behind. Finding the solution to the problem.
Interpretation: It looks as if the rivalry may start up again, but after seeing things differently in the next few days, things should settle. I'll know to take it for what it is, and I'll try my best not to spark anything. I find it funny, how when one seeks isolation and peace, everything seems to speed up and start a chain reaction of wild events before things settle fully.

There's a solution, and I think I've found it! 

I ask readers that know me personally not to judge me. Everyone has hidden dilemmas and mixed feelings. I choose to externalize mine on this blog as a tool for learning the art of tarot and seeing my personal situations from an outside point of view.

COMING UP:
01. St. Andrew's Cross
02. The Modern-Day Dreamer
03. People I Admire
04. Work in Progress
05. Playlisting
♡♡
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