Tag Archives: year in review

Best of 2011 Mixtape

It might have been last-minute, but I have completed my 2011 edition of the XO-LP Mixtape Exchange! Which of course meant three-quarter assing my packaging and having spent an entire weekend listening to only the mixtape . . . errr CD . . . errr whatever.

You can check the mix out on spotify here.

Last year’s mix is here. (I didn’t follow the rules last year . . . shhhhhh.)

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2011 in Images.

My ten favorite images I shot this year . . . no words needed.

Looks like it was the year of sky blue and sparkly lights.


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2011: The List of DID (part two)

As I am so sure you were all eagerly awaiting this, I now bring you the second part and conclusion of the 2011 List of DID.


  • Kicked off the month with the celebration of the birth of Mr. Brian Flynn.
  • Took the entire 4th of July weekend off from my part-time job and declared it a bender of a weekend with the 80/35 music festival, multiple visits to the Red Monk and the Vaudeville Mews, a day at the pool, and illegal fireworks. Oh, and another upper respiratory infection.
  • Got bangs again.
  • Bought yellow shoes and spent a late evening up on a rooftop with a hired street performer.
  • Went to the Downtown Farmers’ Market a few times.
  • Attended the Triatha-LAWN at Tom’s and a night out on Ingersoll.
  • Went out in public after a scalp treatment. NEVER AGAIN.
  • Martini nights at the Lift. Coupled with Van’s work.
  • Attended the opening of Fusion to support Keelia and khenri!
  • Crashed a dinner with artist James Gobel.
  • Spent a saturday night in Van Meter, Iowa, and visited the Iowa Veterans’ Cemetery the following day.
  • Said goodbye to the 4404 with Laura and friends. Oddly enough, this was also my first time at the 4404.
  • Convinced some drunk girls that my name was Lindsey and I was Stephen’s girlfriend on his birthday. Only to have same girls show up to a second celebration and call my Lindsey in front of Stephen’s mother. WOOPS.


  • Attended my first Mojito Monday gathering at Dos Rios and ate at Rolling Wok for the first time.
  • Had an amazing weekend in Clarinda, Iowa, with Jenni, Emilee, and Calla where we visited several local bars and were treated like celebrities.
  • Can now say “This is not my first rodeo” after attending the Sidney Rodeo.
  • Multiple evenings at Carls and the Monk.
  • Visited my sister Alyson in Chicago and was hit on by nerdy guys who just got back from a Star Wars burlesque show.
  • Attended my childhood friend Adam’s wedding back at home and had my car pelted by hail.
  • Visited Bloomington, Indiana, for my sister Chelsea’s 21st birthday.
  • Brought Chelsea and her friend Brittany back to Des Moines with me, where we saw the Ying Yang Twins at the Iowa State Fair, ate too much, and did karaoke.
  • Saw Reba McIntire at the Iowa State Fair with Beka.
  • Got fruity at the Sangria Soiree at Westend Architectural Salvage.
  • Participated in Whiffit for the first time and had too long of a Sunday.
  • Ended my fulltime job at the time.


  • Was unemployed the entire month but worked extra at my part-time job. (YES THAT MAKES SENSE)
  • Ate a lot of hot dogs.
  • Watched Casablanca from the Art Center lawn. 
  • Dogsat for two big dogs.
  • Went to my second Rodeo (Dayton Rodeo) and took a spontaneous trip to Ledges State Park.
  • Celebrated Dani’s birthday with a Jersey Shore themed surprise party.
  • Did a lot of cooking.
  • Developed a personal relationship with Aldi.
  • Made homemade pasta with Alessandra for Sara’s birthday with a bunch of close friends.
  • Celebrate another Sara’s birthday with dinner at Centro and a trip to the Monk (of course).
  • Fell asleep on a roof.
  • Celebrated Keelia’s birthday with a fancy dinner party at Django the same weekend, then headed over to the Deka for Sara’s birthday.
  • Went to Liars’ Club, regrettably.
  • Helped strip wallpaper at Tom’s for his kitchen remodel.
  • Many wednesdays at Carls.
  • Met Thor the bulldog puppy.
  • Had two friends from lawschool visit within the same week and spent two separate nights at the Marriott.
  • The “Beefy” incident.
  • Celebrated Keslie’s birthday at Raccoon River and a trip to a special “club” late at night.
  • Interviewed with and was hired by my current employer.


  • Had a day of adventure with Laura centered around a fashion show.
  • Celebrated Blake’s birthday and housewarming in Van Meter at McToberfest. Drove a 4wheeler and played with fire.
  • Funemployment ended.
  • Dressed in vermilion for the first edition of Hue.
  • Judged a wing eating contest where I saw two girls puke on each other.
  • Bought a bunch of dresses for $70.
  • Had a night where everything went wrong and made it a night of adventures.
  • Attended the housewarming/anniversary of Liz and Nick.
  • Spent a sunday afternoon at the East Village Bazaar.
  • Spent a late sunday afternoon acting like a dude. SPORTS. COUCH. CHIPS.
  • Started a new job.
  • Ate delicious cheese at the Cheese Shop pre-opening event.
  • Went to a fun house and punched a rat person in the face.
  • Was a pizza for Halloween downtown.
  • Was a party for the Gas LampHalloween party.
  • Had a Stooptacular Spooktacular of a sunday.


  • Attended the only Uno night I could for the year.
  • Celebrated Lindsey’s birthday multiple times.
  • Another night of adventure with an art studio open house, I Dreamed I Was a Postcard opening, sushi, Carls, Hessen Haus, and the Monk.
  • Surprised Jared with a good old fashioned day party.
  • Celebrated Thanksvember with my Dobro family and even played a little spin the bottle.
  • Saw Company of Thieves play at the Gas Lamp with Sarah.
  • Another night of surprisingly good music at the Gas Lamp followed by karaoke.
  • Had a girls’ night of dinner and dancing.
  • Traveled to Iowa City to see Mates of State.
  • Debuted Our Kelly at AJ’s after the East Village Promenade.
  • Attended my first murder mystery party and was NOT the killer.
  • Went to the Brass Armadillo for the first time with Anthony and Will and had a Sunday Funday with Beka.
  • Cooked a lot.
  • Went blonde.
  • Worked a million hours over Thanksgiving weekend. Retail hell.
  • Had a lovely Thanksgiving with a brunch at Sarah’s and day with Laurie’s family.
  • Saw the Muppets with Anthony and Sarah.
  • Did karaoke while face-timing my sister Alyson.
  • Attended a surprise party for Beka.


  • Celebrated the birth of Ben with sparklers, then attended multiple events throughout the city.
  • Helped out with a surprise birthday party for Jodi that incorporated many different photobooths.
  • Made gingerbread houses with Keelia and Jen.
  • Made many fun things at the Art Noir holiday workshop.
  • Went to see Michele Bachmann speak at work and got seated right behind her.
  • Attended another Pecha Kucha night where once more I had too much wine–and then ate steak at Django.
  • Had a work party that ended up lasting 12 hours.
  • Co-hosted the second Semi-Ambiguous Day.
  • Bought a photo/negative scanner and stayed in A LOT.
  • Went home for Christmas.
  • Went to Valpo to visit Kristynn and Erik. Wore ugly sweaters and went to a restaurant after hours.
  • Played games, looked at photos, opened presents, ate a lot, napped a lot.
  • Rang in the new year at the Bash at the Social Club.

* * *

There were many moments that are not documented here, like eating way too much with Anthony on multiple occasions or being annoyed by Hank, but that doesn’t make those moments any less important. 2011, while it had its challenges, was a good year. I made many new friends who have worked their ways into my heart and had many more adventures then some recent years. Let’s keep this momentum going.

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2011: The List of DID (part one)

One of the nice things about having a carefully organized album of photos is the ability to look through the catalog and see at a glance just what I did over the past year. Then, couple that with the over-documentation that facebook, twitter, and having a blog bring and you’ve got a shitload of over-information. As 2011 has drawn to a close, what better time to piece it all together into The List of DID: things that done got did. Without further ado, I bring you January – June . . .


  • Rang in the New Year (old year now) at Carl’s.
  • Pre-MLK Sunday Funday spanning over 12 hours.
  • Karaoke night and getting Mollenkamp’d on the dance floor, leading to . . .
  • Sprained foot and winter in a boot.
  • Attended DSM GuacUp at Dos Rios.
  • Beat the tables at the Red Monk to the sounds of Phil Collins for the first time, accompanied by beer box gladiators and a Josh behind the bar.
  • Watched the Bears play the Packers in the NFC championship at the Chicken Coop. And cried.
  • Went to Gong Fu Tea for the first time.
  • Abbie took me along via her guest list privileges to the Good Old War/Guster show at the Hoyt Sherman. College me screamed along to every Guster song. From the second row center.
  • Attended the soft opening of Gusto.
  • Was labeled proletariat at a post-holiday holiday party.


  • A big snow came and the snow plows trapped my car in.
  • Went to a “tropical” wine night. And made the mistake of drinking before it. And after. And spent the next day in a world of pain. Because of WINE.
  • Sang a duet with Chris Juhl. To Len. (Of course.)
  • Went to bar. In WEST DES MOINES. A few times.
  • Ran my face into the corner of a dresser. Legitimately. Black eye.
  • Celebrated Valentines Day the classiest way possible: at a sports bar and then at Carl’s.
  • Created an extensive sharepoint site for a group I was in at my job at the time.
  • Vinegar Valentines’ part II.
  • Spent quality time with Keelia and Henri.
  • Celebrated Jenni’s birthday. #jlaahbahk
  • Celebrated Becky’s birthday with a bus and a stripper pole.


  • Drank a white russian from a sippy cup in a fort.
  • Played games and did racist TV karaoke at Lindsey’s.
  • Did boots at Hessen Haus and was victimized by Jenni’s face grabbing on multiple occasions.
  • Spent a fun day at the Science Center of Iowa with Molly and Calla.
  • Celebrated Fawn’s birthday with a game of ring toss using a glow stick necklace . . . and our heads.
  • Was the victim of a leaky bathroom ceiling.
  • Hosted a Mardi Gras party with Emilee and Chelsea that was more fun than I could have imagined. (Related: met Chelsea)
  • Combined discount wine with attending my first Pecha Kucha night. As usual, the wine was a mistake.
  • Hosted an impromptu game night after purchasing a record player.
  • Spent more money than I planned on new glasses.
  • Attended the St. Patrick’s Day parade for the first time.
  • Enjoyed St. Patrick’s Day for the first time, thanks to Dos Rios, the Monk, and Carl’s.
  • Waited over an hour for a cold sandwich and saw Bright Giant.
  • Saw cops on horses pull over a car.


  • Spent an entire night at West Des Moines bars . . . 
  • Got a sunburn on April 3rd.
  • Celebrated Cat’s birthday with a crappy TV show themed party.
  • Was shaken by a senseless tragedy.
  • ANOTHER karaoke night. This time with baby dolls. And a Sonny & Cher duet with <3 Luke <3.
  • Played games in the penthouse suite of the Hotel Fort Des Moines with an Egyptian.
  • A sad day led to a super fun night with nothing other than karaoke. And Doug getting down to GNR.
  • Hosted a pizza party.
  • Gathered with the law school girls for a ridiculous night centered around watching a Lifetime movie.
  • Anthony won me a panda bunny from a crane game.
  • Went back home to Indiana for Easter.
  • Went in a hot tub for probably the last time ever. (Please remind me hot tubs do not get along with me.)
  • Jared’s amazing laser pointer light show dance parties. And Wilson Phillips over and over.
  • Went to Manhattan Deli for the FIRST TIME EVER.
  • Spent more friday nights at the Monk than I needed to.
  • At some point made my first visit to the SaraBekaDecka.


  • Spent my birthday week sick with walking pneumonia. Was in bed by 9 on my birthday and by 6 on Cinco de Mayo.
  • SPACE MEXICAN PARTY. Patio the zebra, Flynn flynning it, custom t-shirts, and visits from the cops.
  • A wonderful mothers’ day spent outside at Suzana and Igor’s.
  • Another karaoke night brought courtesy of the birthdays of Sheena and myself. This time with a porcelain hand.
  • Bought a sunhat.
  • Celebrated Laura’s birthday multiple times. Three times I believe. Kirkwood, the Monk, Fongs (the night Ben accidentally bought all the pizza, the Decka, the Kirkwood, the Monk, Fongs, Django, Dos Rios).
  • A fun Sunday spent in Kyle’s backyard.
  • And then I took off by car and headed south . . .
  • . . . Kansas . . .
  • . . . A night in Oklahoma City complete with real cowboys and bullriding . . .
  • . . . Austin, TX. Initiated with a Rockabilly festival . . .
  • . . . then a lot of chilling and rum and beer and barbecue and . . .
  • . . . a river float . . .
  • . . . and Texas places . . .


  • Started the month with a drive down to San Antonio and explored the Alamo, the Riverwalk, and other SA sites.
  • Took a leisurely drive through Hill Country and saw Fredericksburg, Luckenbach, and the LBJ National Park.
  • Did karaoke in Austin and was “discovered” by the National Karaoke League.
  • Spent an awesome weekend in Tulsa, Oklahoma, with Lindsey.
  • Saw the devastation that was Joplin, Missouri, two weeks post-tornado.
  • Went to an Opera event and once again drank too much wine. To the point I was convinced I should be an opera singer.
  • Spent a night downtown just people watching with Emilee and Molly.
  • Made tacos and enjoyed an evening on a roof.
  • Did a photo shoot of Henri in the Sculpture Garden.
  • A summer day filled with pizza berets, spontaneous song writing, the Gas Lamp, and the Library.
  • Had three “dates” in 24 hours.
  • Saw Michael Buble.
  • Saw fireworks from a rooftop and shot at people with a laser pointer.
  • Celebrated the renovation of the Red Monk with three visits in one day.
  • Des Moines Arts Festival.
  • Spent an evening with the Palmers.
  • Had a random Monday night of fun with Keelia.
  • Had my first dinner at Tom’s.
  • Connected two friends one random night at Carl’s . . .


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