Since I love redirecting traffic to a much more exciting website, the Fobcave, follow this link to an invitation to a party at our humble abode this coming Thursday. The occasion is ostensibly Master Fob's birthday, but we've decided to use that as an excuse to get together all of our blogging friends and such. As stated in the invite, please RVSP via comments and don't bring a gift. You may bring some food if you would like, but we will be providing that as well. (Disclaimer--the alien that has taken up residence in my womb is preventing me from finding any food appetizing lately, so if I reject any food you bring, it's not my fault!)
We always thought the Eagles were singing "Take Me to the Lemon" (like this one ) and that Crystal Gale was saying "Donuts make my brownies blue" (not this )
We called "goulash" (macaroni with hamburger and spaghetti sauce) "Jabba casserole" because my brother told my mom that it looked as gross as Jabba the Hut. That fluffy jello stuff with cottage cheese and Cool Whip was dubbed "penguin parfait" after I decided it looked like a penguin being eaten by a seal that I saw in a picture in National Geographic. Chicken, rice and broccoli casserole was called "tree and tooth".
Some of my favorite foods from when I was a kid: egg salad sandwiches on pita bread with shredded cheese and alfalfa sprouts cabbage rolls with brown rice and cheese chicken marengo chilesrellenos chili manicotti hamburger stew blueberry strata pie striped delight applesauce oatmeal chocolate chip cookies
When we all got in the car, someone would inevitably call "front by the window" in order to reserve the prime spot. We also sometimes would shout "all aboard the Cuckoomont train" when it was time to get in the car.
And this one isn't from early childhood, but...
My mom likes to refer to lingerie as "recreational underwear"
Today we needed to stop by the mall here in Orem in order to pick up some ink cartridges we had filled at Island Ink Jet. We dropped them off last night, but the dude was taking much too long to refill them. So I decided to give in to my cravings for french fries and take S-Boogie to lunch at Chick-fil-A. Many years ago my sister introduced me to Chick-fil-A at the mall in Maryland. I immediately fell in love--they truly have the best chicken nuggets, french fries and lemonade ever made. I know they are a chain restaurant, but they have a very nice business philosophy and refuse to let any of their franchises open on Sundays. And they are giving out small board books with their kids meals. I can support a place like that.
Also, this morning for my Don Quijote class we went to Special Collections at the library and looked at the exhibit on Don Quijote and the history of reading . It's pretty cool--and if you are on campus you ought to stop by. They have lots of cool old books on display. My favorite part is the one highlighting intertextuality and reading. There are some very old books with notes from readers still in the margins. The best one was owned by a guy who liked to draw a little hand pointing to his favorite parts of the text. There is a drawing of himself with both hands pointing to an especially nice passage. It's cute.
And if Don Quijote isn't enough to lure you to Special Collections, they also have some stuff out commemorating Walt Whitman's Leaves of Grass.
Why does she have to ruin all of her cute clothes? Today S-Boogie was wearing her very cute blue-striped shirt and matching blue pants. And she just colored all over them with bright yellow highlighter. Sigh. Can't she ruin some of the stuff that's already ugly?
I just remembered that today was the day I could register for classes for next semester. The fact that I forgot until just now reminded me that I have been here at school for way too long. Registration is so not exciting any more. I only need to register for one or two classes, and now I can just get on the computer and add them in less than one minute.
I remember my freshman year making a schedule with my roommates so that we could decide who got to use the phone for registering first. Right at midnight you could start registering, and it always took forever because the sections you wanted might be full and you had to flip through the catalog to find the right registration and section numbers. It was an all-night process fraught with stress over what classes you might be able to get into.
I think that my sophomore year was when they introduced Route Y, and it seems like shortly thereafter we could start registering online. It's a much more humane and simple process, although the all night party with the roommates was kind of fun.
The really sad thing is, the majority of people reading my blog have no idea what I'm talking about. The other day I told someone that I remember what the quad looked like before they started digging the giant hole for the library, and she gave me a very scandalized look. I really need to get out of here.
I feel dirty inside. I spent most of this morning at the mall with S-Boogie. I really don't like the mall, I don't like shopping, and I hate being accosted by vendors trying to sell me cell phones or fancy hand lotion. But today is one of those Saturdays when Master Fob works all day, and they have a tendency to become really, really long days. Also, we have been searching everywhere for red boots to complement the Supergirl outfit for next week. Alas, toddlers no longer wear red boots, as I confirmed this morning at Provo Towne Centre.
The trip to the mall wasn't the really bad part, though: I bought her a Happy Meal for lunch. I hadn't really planned on it, but I realized that an Orange Julius sounded great for my queasy stomach, and then when I got to the food court the french fries started calling me. Well, the food court at the Provo mall sucks and the best place (pretty much the only place) for fries was McD's. They have medium fries for $1, but I didn't have that much change and I felt stupid using my credit card for a purchase that small. So I got the Happy Meal with chicken nuggets. I even got her french fries instead of apples, since that was the whole point of buying the stupid thing. At least they let you get milk instead of soda. And we got a rather hideous looking little Madame Alexander doll dressed like Minnie Mouse. Ah yes, Disney and McDonalds, two of the great members of the cult of American capitalism. You can't go wrong with a combo like that.
So next Saturday we will pack an organic lunch and go hiking in the mountains. I promise.
Since I am sure that everyone is dying to know how my day went today, I'll guess I should tell you now. I hope those of you who could watched the forum, more so that you could become more enlightened about Don Quijote and not just because there was such a fabulous prayer at the beginning.
I got to the Marriott Center at about 10:50, since I had been directed to arrive no later than 10:55. I've never sat down on the floor, so it was weird enough to be down there. Most of my classmates from my Quijote class were sitting down there, so I briefly sat by them because I didn't want to be the first to go sit up on the stand. When a few more people came in and sat up there, I went up. The lights were very, very bright and so I felt a little disoriented. Then I noticed that when they directed the camera to Dr. Friedman, you could see a little of my chin behind him. I also started to worry about the height of the microphone, but when I got up to give the prayer, "do not touch the microphone" flashed on all the teleprompter screens and I waited for a moment for them to lower the podium for me. I gave the entire prayer with eyes very tightly shut and I was so nervous about getting back to my seat without tripping that I barely noticed what else was going on. I am also very glad that I was able to sit through the rest of the forum without fidgeting or biting my nails at all.
And then we went to the question and answer section, which was interesting, but I couldn't help thinking about what they were going to serve us for lunch. After the Q&A the few of us that had been invited to the lunch (me, 2 other students, several professors and a few university bigwigs that I can't remember names for) got to hop on a golf cart and ride down to the visitor's center (it's that old house over by the Brimhall building). Lunch was very good, and we even got apple pie for dessert. I was a little disappointed by the lunch however, because I really didn't get to participate in the conversation much. It was dominated by a few other people at the table who outrank me in age and seniority. My main contact with Dr. Friedman was a handshake and a few generic comments. But it was still a fun day and I enjoyed getting to be a "minor celebrity" for a few hours. Dr. Friedman actually commented during the lunch that it was weird for him to go home tomorrow and to not be "famous" any more, so I guess I'm not the only one who likes free lunch and getting to ride on golf carts.
After I got back from my presidency meeting this morning there was a message on the phone from the secretary of an office on campus. I actually listened to it a few times before I realized that I had no idea whose office it was, and decided that I might as well call back. I think I was nervous because I received a somewhat threatening email from the graduate coordinator reminding us that it shouldn't take longer than 2 years to complete the program and that they are going to start monitoring grad students more closely. Well, to get back to the original story, I called and the woman informed me that she was assistant to the "Associate Academic Vice President" and that Dr. Rosenberg had suggested that I give the opening prayer at next week's forum. I was a little surprised (pleasantly surprised, of course) and immediately said yes. So I get to sit on the stand, say the prayer, and ride in a golf cart to the hosting center for a luncheon afterwards. Wow.
The forum is being given by the illustrious Ed Friedman , former president of the Cervantes Society of America and renowned Spanish scholar. He will, of course, be speaking about one of the greatest books ever written, Don Quijote. For those of you who are not aware, the Quijote was first published in 1605, so this year is the 400th anniversary. BYU is having a big symposium this week and Dr. Friedman is the keynote speaker. There are also exhibits at the Museum of Art and at Special Collections in the library, and of course I recommend them both. I feel a little hypocritical urging people to come to the forum, since I generally skip them. But come see Ed Friedman, and more importantly, come see me.
I do have two issues to ponder before Tuesday. What should I wear? Most of my dresses are rather frumpy and not very "grad student/serious scholar" looking. Actually, most of my clothes are rather frumpy...
Also, is it OK to tape the forum for my parents? It's not like I'm speaking or anything, I'm giving a prayer. I feel a little weird taping myself giving a prayer, but I know they would love to see me on TV.
Most of the time I'm not that great at making decisions. I have a tendency to either make a really quick decision based on impulse and gut feelings (I especially do this when taking tests) or else I put off making a decision and stress about my alternatives for much too long. The impulsive decision making has generally served me well in places like school and on the College Bowl team, but it isn't always the best thing when applied to life. But, the dithering and hemming and hawing don't work out so great either.
I was thinking about decision styles today for two reasons. First of all, S-Boogie has been sick again for the last few days (see here and here ) This morning the cold migrated to her chest and has made her very congested. Given her history of hospitalization for not breathing right, this naturally makes me very nervous. Most of all, because as parents it is up to us to decide what to do. Is she wheezing yet, or just breathing heavily? Should we use the nebulizer or wait and see? It's so hard to make these kinds of decisions. One time we dragged her down to the doctor at 10 pm on Sunday night, got covered with vomit in the waiting room, and then were told that it was just the flu. Another time we waited through a day of wheezing to see if it would get better (she was perky and stuff, just breathing a little funny), and she ended up in the hospital for four days. Sigh--does any one have a crystal ball handy?
The other decision that I have been putting off for a while is planning when I will write my thesis and graduate. I will admit that I've partially just been waiting to see if I will get pregnant and have a baby next summer, which would mean I could delay graduation for a while. But that does not seem to be happening, so I've made a firm resolution to write my thesis and defend it in enough time to graduate in August. I love school and I would like to stick around for longer, but I think we are both ready to move on with our lives and be done with it. So there will be no more dilly dallying around; I guess I should get off the computer and go do my homework, shouldn't I?
The thing is, I generally love my calling. I like being in Primary, I like the people I work with (most of them), and it's better than going to Sunday School since that always makes me fall asleep. I've also generally gotten over the fact that I am the president, since it's been a little over a year now. The thing that I am tired of is the relentless parade of problems. There is always something I have to take care of: some calling that needs to be filled, kids not behaving well, an activity to hold, stake reports to file, etc. I never get a break from it! Last week was heavenly because I just had to sit on my couch and watch TV (i.e. sleep). After that nice break, church today kind of felt a little like hell, to put it bluntly.
For one thing, we have church at 1 in the afternoon. The kids are all tired, cranky, bored, crazy, etc. by the time they hit Primary at 2:15. Today we also had a kid who is inactive show up with a friend of his. This should be a good thing, but they were so disruptive during sharing time that the teacher had to pick each one up by their collar (literally) and haul them out. I'm very glad I called her to teach that class--she's tough.
Also, it seems to take forever to get callings filled. I seriously am beginning to wonder what my problem is, because Relief Society fills their callings rather quickly. We've been without a nursery leader for about 2 months now. I've tried about 10 different people, and for various reasons none of them have gotten approved. It is kind of hard in this ward, because we do have a number of people who are too elderly to physically do Primary, but we have a lot who aren't. When the bishop got up today and announced "we have no ward business" I just about screamed "Why not? I need a nursery leader". Then after church one of the counselors told me that they had called some people this morning to various things we need, but he didn't tell me why they didn't sustain them in sacrament meeting. I'm still a little upset about that.
And, finally, I got a call tonight from a parent who was worried because her husband had been sitting on the daughter's class when the teacher mentioned the law of chastity. Then, when the kids asked what that meant, the teacher replied "it has to do with sex". Great, now I have teachers talking about sex in Primary. Granted, the kids are 11 and most of them should know about it. But the lesson was on the temple and I know that it specifically didn't mention sex or the law of chastity. We just don't talk about that in Primary--they like to save it for Young Women and Young Men (and for parents to discuss with their kids). Now I get to talk to the teacher and hope it doesn't blow up into one of those annoying "big deal" things that have already happened several times during my tenure as president. Now that I have a child, I can understand why parents tend to get a little crazy, but I still hate to get stuck in the middle of things like that.
So yeah, I kind of have a love/hate relationship with my calling. I would hate to get released, and I probably won't until we move. But at the same time I keep wondering what would happen if I submitted my own name for pianist or nursery leader...
I don't know if it's just the fact that the medication is working, but things have been going quite well for me lately. I hesitate to even think this, let alone say it, lest I be struck down in my moment of pride. But that's OK; for now I will relish the fact that I'm finally having a good time. Here are a few highlights from today:
--We got to be among the first people to meet our brand new nephew this morning. He is very adorable and managed to break the family curse of the bald headed babies. Lots of black hair and very chubby cheeks.
--My Don Quijote class was quite interesting today; we had an exhilarating discussion on history, literature and truth. I felt proud of the fact that a comment I made was referred to later by the professor as being particularly brilliant.
--After DQ I rushed over to meet Master Fob at a talk being given by one of my favorite YA authors, Chris Crutcher. Chris discussed censorship and bad language in books and stuff like that. It was pretty cool, and Master Fob bought me a copy of my favorite Crutcher book Staying Fat for Sarah Byrnes and got it autographed. We are building up a nice little collection of autographed books...
--After that I had to rush to the counseling center, where I had a nice visit and learned that my rating on the depression scale has gone down again, so things are good. Master Fob took S-Boogie to the grocery store during this time and she was treated like royalty. She loves Maceys because they have truck carts and they give out free balloons. We also stopped at the Malt Shoppe on the way home and treated ourselves to their $3 lunch special.
--And, this evening we went on a date to Fuente Ovejuna . It is a fabulous historical play from Spain, written by one of the masters of Spanish drama, Lope de Vega. The sets, costumes and music were fabulous. The acting was great. I thought some of the dialogue seemed a little weird, but that's what happens when you try and translate a play written in 17th century Spanish verse to English. It doesn't work really well. But, it is awesome and if anyone out there hasn't seen it yet, you should go. Definitely worth the money. (And if you sit in the first few rows you get excellent views of the skin tight breeches and leather codpieces)
Today was a particularly fun day, but I'm actually glad I have no plans for tomorrow or Saturday. It will be nice to not be busy for once!
Oh, and special thanks to my sister for washing our dishes while she was here babysitting, that was the final touch of fabulousness.
Wrapped in the feather boa of The season’s premier snowstorm, October makes her entrance. But, after the introduction, She drops the frozen front and Gleams gold so bright That wild geese echo the musical applause Long after the last curtain call That cuts into November’s icy act.
One of my favorite things about Conference is the really lame commercials they play right before and after sessions. Some of my current favorites include:
"FHE on DVD"--Now you don't have to spend any effort to have family time. Hey, you don't even have to talk to each other at all!
"You've waited two long years for it. You've waited long enough"--"It" is Richard Paul Evans' new book. Yeah, since two years is such a long, long time for writing and publishing a new book, especially one of such obvious quality.
"LDS Realtors.Com"--Making it even easier to avoid getting to know people of other faiths, no matter where you go.
Oh, and I love the fact that just after hearing talks about staying out of debt and living moderately we get all the commercials for things like the "collectors' editions" of books like Lectures on Faith that cost 4 times as much as a simple paperback would...