Studio has Priority Over Everything Else, Apparently

Hi people! Gosh! It’s been a while hasn’t it?! Well, luck for you, I’ve been doing lots of things in studio and what not. Get ready, this will be a very long post.

BUT! Before I dive in, I must announce that I tried, once more, to make the cooking in the mug, with exemplary results. (at least, it looked edible enough that I could take a picture).IMG_5265

It was very delicious!






And, speaking of food, here is what I’ve been doing in studio:



EATING DOUGHNUTS!!! Drawing doughnuts!!!!!

This was an in-class assignment where we had to draw a doughnut. Ok, let me elaborate. We are learning how to draw objects in plan, elevation and section. A drawing in plan perspective means looking at the object right on top of it (a birds eye view). An elevation drawing is done from the side of the object. A section drawing is as though you cut the object is half and you draw whatever would be in the middle. Drawing the doughnut was pretty handy for this part because I could actually cut it in half to draw the section perspective (That was the drawing on the bottom of the page). Another example maybe?


Plan View

Plan View

Our first studio project was to do the plan, elevation, section, and prospective of a single Lego block (did you notice my neatly-lettered labels). Then, we had to do the same things with a stack of blocks (Drawings on the left).

So I might have said before that all the first year LARCH students were split in to two groups. One did the digital sequence first (that was my group) and one did the analog sequence first. Then we switched. All the people who started with the analog sequence told me that it was lot of work and all the complaints that go along with that. On the first day I was like, this isn’t so bad! We get to eat doughnut and stuff. Then we were assigned that perspective project with the blocks, and I was like, Ok, they’re steppin’ up their game. Not too bad… HAHAHA.

In class, we did this exercise where you’d take some form and morph it into something else through a series of 5 steps. Example: They gave us each a toy animal to draw. I got an iguana. We had to then morph that animal (iguana) into a pencil. This is hard to explain. Also, I didn’t take a picture of the exercise. Anyhow, our homework assignment was to Use the large Lego blocks and morph them into some other object that people could interact with. That sounds fairly ambiguous? You have no idea. So our homework was to do that for thirty different objects. Meaning, five little thumbnails for each object. They were like, don’t worry! it’s only thirty drawings! But really, it was 150 of those little thumbnail sketches.




Then, after we finished 150 I mean 30 drawings, we had to pick our favorite one and do a perspective, plan, section, and elevation (there seems to be a pattern emerging). I picked a giant, wavy speaker thing that I imagine would be situated in a public square and would play music.

Below you see a terrible picture of my half finished homework. I apologize for not taking another but I forgot. I will post a better picture later.



Oof. I can’t look at that picture anymore. So moving on.

Photo 2014-10-26 10.10.27 PM

I went home for the weekend, and I have a pretty good analogy for how I feel about going home for the weekend (I think it’s pretty clever).

Going home for the weekend is like taking a shower in the winter when you’re really tired. I don’t really feel like taking one because that requires all the necessary preparations for doing that. Likewise, I don’t like having to pack and take all my homework with me. I also don’t want to miss anything that might happen in my absence. So I drag myself into the shower, and it feels refreshing and warm and suddenly, I don’t want to leave. I just want to stand in the hot shower and steam up the bathroom and not worry about my upcoming tests or all the unchecked emails or the laundry that I’ve neglected for two weeks. I think, “What if I could just stay home and watch Netflix and eat late-night snacks all the time? I could be with my pets (and my family) and not have to buy food all the time and always have toilet paper in the bathroom.” But then the rational part of my brain is like, “No Zoe, you can’t do that.” I have to get out of the shower, which is hard at first because it’s cold and my hair keeps dripping on my PJs. But, after I’ve dried off and I feel all clean, I’m really happy that I took a shower.

Also, that book under my little sign is The Omnivore’s Dilemma by Michael Pollan. It is the first non-fiction, completely adult book that I voluntarily bought! (Actually I’m reading it for a class). I’ve only read six pages, but it is very interesting.

The other day when I was getting ready to take my shower, I was getting out my soap bar and it fell and look how it landed!


I got so excited, but no one was home, so I took a picture.

Also, here is proof that I am still being productive in gymnastics. It is only one of two photos take of me during practice:



It’s really blurry because I was holding the camera while leaping, and attempted to capture my split leap in mid air. Unfortunately, I forgot that the camera would also be moving. It’s artsy, right?



The Benefits of Public Transportation

It is halfway through the first semester. Homework is piling up at an alarming speed. There are essays to write, tests to take, and deadlines to meet. Any moment spent not doing homework is spent avoiding it.The air is cold and smells like fall. Trees are painted red, orange, and yellow. Leaves tumble off the branches, drifting to the ground. (This leaf detachment happens through the process of abscission). It’s getting dark earlier and no conversation is complete without someone saying they are tired.

And here is what I’ve been up to:

First off, here is my last studio project for digital sequence. Tomorrow, my section will be doing “analog drawing” which is the non-computer part of studio, and I have little to no idea what that entails. Anyway, for our project, we had to color in a black and white site plan. I DID NOT DRAW THIS. I just colored it in. (I did not draw this).


The other day, I was doing laundry. I put my clothes in the dryer. When they were done, I opened up the door to find this:



It made me very happy. I think it’s fascinating that the money didn’t get mixed in with the rest of the clothes. It was just lucky someone didn’t get impatient and take my clothes out of the dryer to put in their own, because I would’ve lost a small fortune.


All the groceries I could fit in my backpack.

I’m not sure I’ve mentioned this before, but I have a fear of public transportation. I’m always worried that I’ll get off at the wrong place or take the wrong bus or something. I just don’t trust my directional judgement (which I can admit I do not have much of). But, last night, I did the unthinkable: I TOOK THE BUS! I figured that as an actual adult-like person, I will need to figure out public transportation so I can go places on a very limited budget. I had also gone to McLanahan’s and bought a large amount of groceries, including a 5 pound bag of flour and a dozen eggs which I really didn’t want to lug up hill. (Side note: I was also considering buying a bag of those tiny clementines but decided against it which was probably good judgement). I had put all the groceries in my backpack which made it bulge out really far, and probably looked really suspicious. I also felt like I was going to fall over backwards.

After I went to the store, I decided to get some dinner. For obvious reasons, I didn’t want to walk very far so I went to Panera. Do you see the IMG_5243picture of my food there? That is a Panera dinner without a baguette! when did the start giving customers soft dinner rolls like it’s some kind of upgrade!? Soft dinner roles are available in every diner in America. If you’re going to Panera, you’re there for the bread.

Outside, it was cold, wet, and windy. In conditions like this, any person with a substantial amount of weight on their shoulders would have no desire to trek all the way back to North Halls. So I waited for the bus, and I got on the right bus, and I got off at the right stop. I was very proud of my accomplishment, and happy that I had less far to walk.

Here is proof that I took the bus:


I did not want people to question my intentions in taking a picture of the bus with people in it, so I took it of the doors. Anyhow, I now realize the benefits of public transportation.

I guess I should explain the flour and eggs. Well, I decided to make a cookie in a mug. I looked up a recipe online, but I must have done something wrong because it did not turn out like the picture. (I realize here that I should’ve taken a picture of it as that last sentence made a perfect lead-in for a picture. However, I was so disappointed in the outcome that I did not take one).

This morning, I made myself breakfast:

IMG_5256 (In the microwave, I might add) My dorm room now smells like bacon.

Pasta With Garlic and Bacon

Bacon? Yes! Bacon! I cooked bacon in a microwaveable bowl and it was amazing!


-Anglehair pasta

-2 pieces of bacon

-minced garlic

-salt and pepper

-Parmesan Cheese

What to do:IMG_5240

-Break up angel hair pasta in a bowl and add water to cover the pasta

-Add salt to water

-Put in microwave for 5-6 minutes, watch vigilantly, making sure it doesn’t overflow

-In another bowl, put 2 strips of bacon, cut up in pieces

-Heat in microwave for 2 minutes

-Take out of microwave and wipe out grease. Add garlic, then put back in for 30 sec

-Add garlic and bacon the the pasta and mix together

-Add pepper

-Top with lots of cheese 🙂


What I Learn In Plant Biology: I Have Been Lied to My Whole Life

ATTENTION! I am taking a break in your irregularly scheduled programming to bring you this urgent news:

So we’re finishing up our unit on plant structures and their functions (like leaves, roots, that sort of thing)

Here is what I have learned:

First of all, who ever told you that ginger is a root, is tragically misinformed. In fact, ginger is a stem. I’m not even kidding. Ginger is a “modified stem” called a rhizome that grows horizontally in the ground. I just blew your mind!

But wait! There’s more!

That whole debate over whether a tomato is a fruit or a vegetable? Well, according to my textbook (and my professor and probably the internet), a tomato is not only-botanically speaking-a fruit, it is a berry. What? Yes! It is true! A berry has a thin skin and usually contains many seeds and has a soft inside at maturity. And do you know what else is considered a berry? GRAPES! Boom.

And one last thing. While acorns are nuts, walnuts and pecans are not! I’m actually no sure why that is. Also peanuts are actually legumes, not nuts.

So anyway, enjoy the rest of your day, with this new information about food that will probably change your life forever.

If you are having a rough time digesting this information, you can fin the authors of this book and have a chat with them.



Doing “Adulty” Things and What Not

Some very exciting news: I did my first 18-year-old thing! I voted! I requested anIMG_5215 absentee ballot and filled it out like any responsible person concerned with local politics of their home town would do. I was most disappointed, however, that the envelope containing the ballot did not include the famous “I voted” sticker.





IMG_5226This weekend was a very exciting time in terms of food consumption. On Friday night, I went to the creamery  with one of my roommates. Like always it was delicious. (Seriously, Penn State creamery ice cream is amazing). Last night, I went down to Big Bowl Noodle House for some food and it was seriously delicious. It was also one of my only actual meals I’ve had all weekend (not counting breakfast). I got bubble tea and Pad Thai stir fry with beef. If you are even around University Park, I’d highly recommend it. 🙂

Bubble tea (if you were wondering) is this milky tea with giant tapioca balls in the bottom, which are sucked up through a fat straw. It’s the kind of thing that you either will love, or think is really weird.

Campus rodents are pretty entertaining. There are also a ton of them. I’m pretty sure that they are fatter than non-campus rodents because of things like this:


The squirrel had climbed up on the wheel of the bike and I’d tried to take a photo of that, but then he climbed up onto the trash can which is still pretty cute.

I have this suspicion that the squirrels are trying to wage war on the students, because when ever I walk under the oak trees, acorns rain down at an alarming speed and I can’t help but imagine a bunch of fat squirrels sitting in the branches throwing acorns at anyone below.

I saw a hot air balloon the other day and I’m pretty sure this picture could win an award…


The award might be worst picture ever taken of a hot air balloon, but I would still accept it with pride.

A quick rant about citation:

Ok, so when I was in middle/highschool, there was only one method of citation and that was MLA. We were given thick packets that explained how to cite every single type of source you could possibly find-A book with a more than 4 authors, a title with a title in it’s title, a journal accessed through a database with no author. But now, it turns out that there are at least THREE different ways to cite things. You got your Chicago Style and your APA papers (along with good ‘ol MLA formatting). And each method is slightly different than the other and I really don’t understand why some papers have to be written using one style and other have to be written using a different way.

Penn State has a decently large campus and classes can be far away. I always want to run to class because it’s impossible to look dignified while galloping down a sidewalk whilst my back back flops around hitting people in the waist. I say waist because there are a lot of tall people on campus.

Watching people bike up Shortlage Road, you can just tell that they’re thinking, “I can do this! I’m gonna make up this hill! Don’t stop now!”

Also, it rained and grass made this cool pattern on the sidewalk:IMG_5223


Chocolate Covered Pretzles

Getting a little bit fancy.


  • A desired amount of pretzels
  • A desired amount of chocolate

What to Do:

  • Put chocolate in a microwave safe dish and heat in microwave in 30 second to 1 minute intervals, stirring to make sure chocolate doesn’t burn (because that would be devastating)
  • when all chocolate has just melted, remove bowl from microwave
  • Swirl pretzels around in chocolate until evenly coated and place on a plate
  • Put plate in the fridge until chocolate hardens