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Showing posts from July, 2007

Reading Roundup July

Bird by Bird by Anne Lamott

This is meant to be a book about life as well as writing, and I remember enjoying it while I read it. However, a few weeks later I don't remember a lot. I did read it quickly, so maybe I should read it more slowly next time. And take notes.


Running in the Family by Michael Ondaatje
An interesting memoir about his family history. Beautiful descriptions of tropical splendor, of course. In some way the eccentricities reminded me of my own family.New Moon by Stephenie Meyer


I'll just say it: I hated this book. Hated it. I felt somewhat indifferent about Twilight, but this one was just so obnoxious. I wanted to slap Bella the whole time. There is nothing interesting about a main character who has no ambitions or life of her own, who spends her whole time following around one guy or another, and who is so shallow she wants to die so she can always stay the exact same age as her boyfriend. Blah.


The Chosen by Chaim Potok

I'm glad I gave Potok another chance …

All ye that labor

Since today was the fifth Sunday of the month we had a special meeting with the Relief Society and Priesthood combined. Our bishop spoke, and chose to center his remarks around the Stake's theme scripture for the year:

Come unto me, all ye that labor and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls. For my yoke is easy, and my burden is light. (Matthew 11: 28-30)

We first talked about the word "labor" and it's connotations. At that point I remembered that Joseph Smith used the same word in describing his struggles to find the right church; he says "I was laboring under the extreme difficulties caused by the contests of these parties of religionists". Finding a testimony and seeking Christ is labor; it is work. One of the things I really liked about the new video about Joseph Smith the Church produced a few years ago was the way they dramatized Joseph…

12 Months

The other day I received a package in the mail from the BYU library. It contained my thesis, nicely bound in a blue cover and looking nice and official. I'm still somewhat in a state of shock that I really don't have to do anything else. I'm done. I have defended my thesis, passed all my tests, and graduated. I still don't feel worthy. What that really means is that the thesis cloud has lifted and I can move on to other projects. I have two children, so obviously I won't be spending lots of time on new things, but the freedom is exhilarating. So here are some of the things I would like to get done during the next year (after which I will probably be back in school):

1. Read a lot of books.

This probably shouldn't even be a goal. It will happen whether I plan on it or not. I'm an addict. I'm trying to decide if I want to be read some of the critical theory and some of the major works of Spanish and other world literatures that I am unversed in, or if I sho…

Heavenly Messengers

This morning on the way to the library I had a sudden urge to be spontaneous. Instead of going home for lunch, the kids and I decided to swing by McDonald's and get some lunch to take to the park. I was going to write a post about how I decided to eat at McDonald's instead of the local place across the street. The local place has better tasting food, but they don't have a drive thru. They also don't have healthy kids meal options like apples and milk. So I sold my soul to corporate America all for the sake of saving money and avoiding feeding soda to my children. Like I said, while at the park eating I was writing a post in my head about how it's OK to not always be "perfect". Wiggle room in the budget (and the diet) for Happy Meals is not a bad thing.

Then it turned out that S-Boogie was too distracted by the playground to eat any of her lunch. I wrapped her cheeseburger and apples back up and put them in the bag. I left the bag on the picnic table and we…

PhD vs MLS

It is now the end of July, which means August and September are rapidly approaching. That really means that it is time to start thinking about applying for more grad school next year. I don't want to be filling out last-minute applications in December. Right now I'm still trying to decide if I want to go ahead for a PhD or if I want to get a library degree instead. For some reason Blogger doesn't like me doing bulleted lists, so I'll try to be as coherent as possible.

PhD:

I enjoyed my classes so far; I trust my professors when they tell me I do good work and that they think I would do well in a PhD program; I like studying and researching. However, I'm not a big fan of writing or publishing. I'm also not totally sure about committing myself to academia exclusively.

I like teaching; I like discussing ideas; I know I'm somewhat timid and a bit of a "soft" teacher, but I think that at higher levels that wouldn't be such an issue.

I like the work sc…

Odds and Ends

I have a lot of random half-written posts floating around in my head, but haven't taken the time to write any of them down. I promise I'll try and write a real post one of these days.

S-Boogie is doing much better. She actually hasn't even had too many side effects from the antibiotics, so far. And we managed to tweak the medicine schedule so we wake her up at 11 and give her medicine before we go to bed, so everyone is much happier.

We spent way too much time Simpsonizingourselves the other night. But it was fun, and now I have a new profile pic.

I know I promised before and after pictures of the new dresser, but Mr. Fob did the switch while I was at church and didn't take a shot of the old one. Sorry.

The weather has been cold and rainy all week. Apparently it's not supposed to be like that in July here. We had a ward activity at a park tonight and it was very cold and damp. S-Boogie had a great time playing with her friends. My special raspberry/peach tart didn'…

S-Boogie Update

S-Boogie has cellulitis; according the handout we got from the ER it is a "potentially serious infection". Basically it happens when bacteria that are normally on the outside of your skin get inside it and decide to have a party. They probably got in through her mosquito bites. The "potentially serious" part comes in when the bacteria get into the bloodstream or if you get a scary bacterium like staph or that flesh-eating stuff. Thankfully none of that happened and her hand is looking much better. The only thing that sucks is that she's taking the extra-strength antibiotics that have to be given three times a day (every eight hours). That means that we get to take turns waking her up at 4 in the morning to give her medicine and a little snack to settle her tummy. I guess it's better than having her come down with a systemic infection or ending up in the hospital. At least she's an adaptable sort of kid and really doesn't seem to mind getting up to t…

Travel Plans

We've got two big trips planned for August. First of all, we'll be coming to Utah for a few days for BYU graduation. I'm getting excited because my little brothers are flying out and my sister will be back in the states, so my entire family will be together for the first time in three years. Should be fun. We probably won't be staying for a really long time because Mr. Fob won't quite be done with his school-related stuff. I also might have a job by then, so I don't know about time off. But we know for sure that we'll be in Utah for a few days around the 17th. We were talking last night about having some sort of get together with friends, so if it will work out we'll email you. If you want to be included and I don't have your email, send me one (address at the bottom of the page).

A week or so after we get back from Utah, we'll be flying off to Hawaii. We found tickets on sale ($320 round trip!) and couldn't pass up the deal. We're going …

For the record

After recently reconfirming my opposition to Disney movies, today I let S-Boogie watch Snow White and Pocahontas. When she's sick, I'll pretty much do anything to help her feel better. I also bought her strawberry ice cream.

I respond to stress by spending money. If you saw the amounts I spend, you'd probably laugh. But our budget doesn't have a lot of wiggle room so even little sprees add up. The funny thing is, I usually combine my penchant for spending with my need to eat to manage stress, so I end up blowing a wad at the grocery store. While waiting for S-Boogie's prescription I bought cherries, circus animal cookies, two kinds of pudding, and two kinds of ice cream. Then after I stopped by a different store to get new thermometer covers I stopped by Trader Joe's and bought a bunch more junk. Oh, and pizza dough so we can have pizza.

Insurance is a big pain in the butt. I shouldn't have to spend three hours and go to two different pharmacies to get the a…

How the mighty have fallen

I know I've already blogged about my views on children and licensed characters. Before my children were born I vowed to never let them watch television and to ban any sort of toys associated with characters from our home. Since then I've learned that real life has a way of tempering your ideals. S-Boogie still doesn't watch Disney movies or own any princess things, but we are firmly stuck in Dora land and have been for nearly a year now. I still refuse to buy her Dora clothing or Dora bedding, but she is convinced she will be receiving a Dora bike and helmet for her birthday in a few weeks. I think I need to start looking at consignment shops right now, because the birthday fairy does not have funds for a new bike. Here are some tidbits from today's Dora mania:

1. "Dora and Diego got baby jaguar. They had to go down the river and through the jungle. We saw a jaguar at the zoo. It was sleeping. I love Dora and Boots. In the name of Jesus Christ, amen." She sai…

My love/hate relationship with Ikea

The first time I visited Ikea was the day I arrived in Seattle last fall. Since it was on the way home from the airport and since we needed furniture, we thought it would be a good idea to stop by and browse on our way to our hotel. Well, we quickly realized that even Ikea furniture is out of our price range, shopping with two tired children fresh off a plane is a nightmare, and Ikea is large and overwhelming. We did eat at the restaurant and I really liked the meatballs.

We hadn't returned to Ikea until last night. I'm not sure why, but for some reason it just didn't happen. Then yesterday I decided I had had enough of the kids' dresser. We got it from some lady on craigslist last year; we bought S-Boogie's bed from her, and she threw in the dresser for ten dollars. She even had her boyfriend deliver it to us. Unfortunately I didn't look at the dresser before agreeing to have it, and we quickly realized why she was desperate to get rid of it. The drawers wouldn…

One More Try

Just when you thought you knew everything about me, I got tagged again. This time by Kengo Biddles, who I think is cool. The interesting twist on this particular meme is that it has been dubbed "The 8 Random Gay Mormon Facts", probably because it is circulating among the Gay Mormon bloggers. I am not Gay, but I am Mormon, so I will go ahead and answer.

1. Part of the reason for posting this today is because I recently wrote a post on Northern Lights and I know I am getting new visitors who were linked from that post. I thought they might want to know more about me than cookbook reviews and musings on my lack of cleavage.

2. I mostly submitted that post to Northern Lights because it felt funny to put it on my blog. I started this blog two years ago as my personal space, and so it deals with all facets of my life, not just my relationship with Mr. Fob. I will probably contribute occasionally to Northern Lights because I like what they are doing and I feel better about contributi…

Cookbook Review

One of the best ways to get out of a recipe rut is to borrow a cookbook from a friend or from the library. I've even bought a few that I discovered at the library. One of my latest finds is The Vegetarian Five-IngredientGourmet. I like this book because all the recipes are simple and involve easy to find, fresh ingredients. I don't like the fact that most of the salad recipes don't include any sort of dressing besides "use your favorite vinagrette", but they are still good. I really liked the menu suggestions throughout the book, since they give you good ideas for combining things. We enjoyed sweet-potato quesadillas, where you mash sweet potatoes and green chiles together, then spread it on the tortilla and top with jack cheese. They were delicious. I also really liked this recipe for black beans:

Garlicky Black Beans

4 cloves garlic, finely minced or pressed
2 cans black beans, drained and rinsed
Juice of one lemon
1/2 cup water

Heat a small amount of olive oil in a …

No deep dark secrets

After two posts in a row confessing all kinds of interesting things about myself I thought you might like to know some stuff that is utterly boring:

Today I had my first ever massage. It was pretty good. It wasn't as fabulous as I was expecting, but that's probably because I went to a student clinic. They did manipulate my intestines, because I'd checked the box for "chronic constipation" under "medical issues you have a seen a doctor for". I think it helped, too. Getting totally naked for a guy who looks like he is seventeen was a lot easier than I thought. I just reminded myself that I've had two babies and that I've been to the proctologist, so this couldn't be quite so bad. It wasn't, especially because he was very good at the draping. So I decided that getting a massage was a much better reason to get naked for strangers than most of those other times in the past.

We also went and got Little Dude's picture taken this afternoon. I…

Another true confession

A few days ago Miss Nemesis wrote an excellent post about the women in her ward who were obsessed with not being pretty enough. While that was a worthwhile topic, what really caught my eye were the comments by a few mothers who pointed out that those women should be grateful for what they have, because after they have children "their boobs will never be the same". I have a confession that I hope will not incur the wrath of mommies everywhere:

I don't know what they are talking about.

My boobs are the one thing in my life that never changes. When I was in sixth grade they started developing like everyone else's. I waited excitedly for the day when puberty would hit and they would blossom and grow and look all womanly. It's been seventeen years and I'm still waiting. At some point I stopped buying AA bras and started buying A, but that's mainly because AA is hard to find with my band size. I get the padded or shaped ones, but there's a fairly large gap b…

4X2=8

I got tagged by Becca, who is a friend of some friends of mine, to share eight things about myself. Since I've already shared a number of things about myself, I was trying to figure out what you possibly couldn't know about me. Hopefully these will be 8 unique facts:

1. Even though the entire process is a pain, I love having parties and entertaining. I'm not that big into making things look great (a la Martha Stewart), but I love to cook and I love to invite friends over to hang out and eat. We celebrated with friends tonight and it was a lot of fun.

2. I ran a red light the other day. I really didn't mean to, and the more I think about it the more freaked out I am. I just keep imagining a car running into the side of my car and smushing S-Boogie, and it would be my fault. Thankfully that didn't happen.

3. I used to hate capri pants. When they first started being the fashionable thing to wear, I thought they were ridiculous. Finally a few years ago I realized that I j…

Something Different

I rarely blog about the good days, so I thought I'd write about our wonderful day today. For some reason Happy Mommy managed to get out of bed this morning, instead of the usual Grumpy Mommy. I think that was helped by the fact that both children slept through the entire night and that it was a warm, sunny day (and a "warm day" here means 80 degrees, not 100 like that other crazy state we used to live in).

We started the day off early; both kids were awake and hungry at seven. But I got a decent amount of sleep so I didn't mind too much. S-Boogie was upset that we didn't have good choices of cereal, so we mixed up some pancakes. We even put blueberries in them, since we visited the farm stand yesterday and bought some nice juicy ones. After we ate breakfast, we cleaned up and changed our clothes. Then I decided to load the kids into the jogging stroller and go for a walk. I quickly realized that I hadn't exercised for a very long time, but it was a nice walk …

Hard Sell

I just got off the phone from scheduling pictures for S-Boogie and Little Dude. I feel kind of bad that I never managed to get Little Dude in for a studio photo of him as a baby, but at least I'm on the ball to get his one-year photo. We've done Target in the past, but the closest one with a portrait studio here is 50 miles away, so we're switching our loyalty to JC Penney. Besides the fact that I'm already nervous about Little Dude's behavior (I remember S-Boogie attempting to throw herself off the table at her one-year portrait), I am getting very nervous about dealing with the pushy salespeople. As much as I hate the actual picture-taking, I hate trying to convince them that I really only want my one pose, $7.99 package. That's it.

The lady on the phone today was very pushy. She wanted to know all about my children's ages, personalities (how do you describe the personality of a one-year-old?), full names, hobbies, what they were going to wear, etc... I tr…