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January 2, 2012 / Natalie G.

2011: Briefly

2011 was a whirlwind of a year. I can’t really believe it is 2012 already. I know everyone says that the older you get the faster time goes, but until this past year I never really understood what they meant. Holy cow.

Here are a few highlights:

Paris! Japan! Mexico! All in under an hour! Magic? Kind of… In April The Boy and I went to  Disney World. He was still working at ABC so we got free passes into the parks and his Aunt and Uncle rent a house in Florida in the springtime to get away from the cold New England winters, so we had to go.  I had never been to Disney World and it was quite an adventure. Epcot was probably my favorite park… Or Animal Kingdom… I couldn’t choose.

While in Florida we went to The Wizarding World of Harry Potter and had Butterbeer! It was amazing… Although much too sweet to drink too much of – I’m glad I tried it. And even though it was small Hogwarts and Hogsmeade/Diagon Alley were incredibly well-built and the attention to detail was remarkable.

In May The Boy and I flew back to Boston (where we went to college and met) for a lovely wedding.  It was the first of our friends to get married and it was wonderful but I have to admit it is a little strange to think that there will be many more friends getting married in the coming years.  The Boy also took me to dinner at the place where we had our first date – pretty adorable.

In June I had the opportunity to go to Costa Rica with my family. My sister had been living and working there for almost 2 months and after meeting her in San Jose we travelled to the coast and to the beautiful Arenal Volcano.

My sister and I at Rincon de la Vieja National Park.

Natural acid pool at Rincon de la Vieja National Park – yes, it is boiling.

In September I went to Minneapolis/St. Paul to visit my younger sister. Her Boyfriend and I drove out to see her race in a cross-country meet in the Minnesota countryside. On the way back we stopped at an apple orchard and picked up some delicious apples and a few apple donuts for the road.

She ran such a great race! I was so impressed. I was also very cold.

Contrary to how it may appear, I did not spend all of 2011 gallivanting around the world. I wish. I spent most of it working, and then I worked, and then we moved, and then I worked more. I worked on a lot of commercials, like this one, and this one and even this one! I started the year off with a music video which was an adventure to say the least.

I also got the opportunity to production design a few videos on my own. The first one was for Gabrielle Taryn’s I Surrender which I shared in an earlier post .

I also production designed two videos for George Watsky, an incredibly talented writer and performer. The first video was for George’s version of Mrs. Robinson and featured Danny McClain, the suave singer pictured above.

The video included a pillow fight which was fun to create but a challenge to pick up… feathers went flying everywhere. I’ll be sure to post a link to the video when it comes out.

In November I worked on the second of the Watsky videos – an homage to O Brother, Where Art Thou? – that we shot on two farms in Fallbrook, CA, about 100 miles south of Los Angeles.  Above you can see the blueberry pie I made sitting on a windowsill we managed to rig to be a freestanding set piece. Rigging it was a challenge seeing as we were in the middle of a field with limited tools and no Home Depot near by,  yikes! This video should be coming out soon as well… I can’t wait.

George and his chain gang band.

I spent the holidays in Portland, Oregon with my wonderful family. I couldn’t have asked for a better place to call my hometown. My friend Laura came up with me for a few days and we did all the great Portland things I could think of – which ended up being a lot of things!

Voodoo Donuts! Apple Cider Donut! Nom, Nom, Nom.

And we made delicious gingerbread cookies!

Finally, The Boy and I ended the year in style with perhaps the greatest concert I’ve ever been to – Pink Martini at the Walt Disney Concert Hall.  They welcomed the New Year with an incredible set and a full marching band at midnight!

I look forward to the adventures 2012 will bring!

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