Showing posts from November, 2007

5 Things

I've probably done stuff like this before, but I figured I'd jump on the bandwagon since three of my friends have done it. Five things I Was Doing Ten Years Ago 1. Getting ready for finals. Hating myself for taking dumb classes like Psych 101 or History 122 just because they sounded "fun". 2. Working for the Youth and Family Programs office. At this point in the year I think we would have been gearing up to get ready for EFY registration by phone. 3. Going to College Bowl practice a lot. 4. Finding a Christmas present for the boy I wasn't really waiting for (we didn't really date), but was writing on his mission. I don't remember what I sent him, but I must have sent him something. 5. I honestly don't remember anything else from this time in my life. It was my second year at BYU and nothing much happened that year that was too memorable. Oh, one of my roommates that I had also roomed with freshman year was engaged. Uh, yeah, that's all I remembe

Still here

As usual, I have a bunch of great ideas for posts and no time to get them written down. One of these days I'll get my Thanksgiving recipes up here. I even took pictures of the food. This week and next week are really busy. Tonight my class had an exam, and next week we have a final that I spent several hours putting together today. Last night I had book group; every one read Persepolis and enjoyed it a lot. We had a great discussion (and good food) and I got home late. Then tomorrow night I have Enrichment. Plus tomorrow we're getting new blinds installed and Little Dude has a check up at the doctor. And so on. Lots of things to do during the next week or so. I'm especially feeling pressure because we're planning on leaving on a road trip next weekend. So I might not be blogging much for the next little while. Updates: I decided to buy S-Boogie Candyland for Christmas. It was a semi-impulsive decision precipitated by the fact that Target had the game on sale for $7.99

Another Reason I Hate Football (And Public Drunkenness)

Tonight we went out to take my sister to the train station. I thought of staying home, but I felt like I needed a break since I had spent all day sitting on the couch. Mr. Fob was grateful that I came to help navigate around the yucky traffic, and I was glad I had not been home when we got back to our apartment and discovered this . Stupid football. Stupid alcohol. Stupid college students. Stupid rivalry. PS--We have double pane windows so there is no glass in our apartment and no cold air coming in. We talked to the university police and hopefully we'll get it fixed by housing on Monday. I'm also going to talk to the housing office about some sort of fence around our patio, because I'm tired of things getting stolen and people throwing trash on our porch.

Black Friday Indeed

This morning my sister and I took the kids over to see the canal locks. It was a lovely morning and we saw a lot of birds and boats. Little Dude fell asleep in the car on the way home. As I was walking down the steps to our apartment I miscalculated and missed the last one. Unfortunately I was holding a still-sleeping Little Dude and couldn't catch myself. My left ankle folded up and then I landed on it. After four hours in the emergency room (why do I always end up there?) I came home with an air cast and a prescription for ibuprofen. Thankfully it's just a sprain and thankfully Little Dude didn't get hurt when I fell down. And thankfully my sister is here visiting so she could hang out with the kids while Mr. Fob and I were in the ER watching Law and Order on the TV. I just feel bad that we weren't able to out and have fun this afternoon like we had planned. At least we have enough Thanksgiving leftovers to make it through the next few days. It's too bad I can

Thanksgiving Day

I'm thankful that dinner turned out beautifully and everything tasted great. It was even ready on time and we only had one semi-major mishap. I tried the Alton Brown recipe for turkey from the Food Network and stuck the turkey in the oven to start at 500 degrees. After 20 minutes smoke started filling the house. It turned out that the old Pyrex pan I was using to cook it in split right down the middle. The grease was spilling out and burning all over the oven. We got the turkey in a new pan and cleared the air and the rest of the dinner went well. It could have been a lot worse. I'm thankful my sister came to visit. We love having her come and she's already been a lot of fun. Plus she brought Williams Sonoma peppermint hot chocolate and a fun Thai martial arts movie that we watched tonight. And she cleaned up the kitchen this evening. I'm thankful to live in a beautiful city with so many opportunities to see nature right by our house. After our meal we drove over to a

More Shameless Bragging

So, what could possibly make my week better than a quick getaway to a bed and breakfast? Could it be the pumpkin swirl cheesecake I made this afternoon that didn't even crack? Those were both pretty cool, but then tonight was even better. Some one mentioned World Market the other day, and I realized that I pass that store on my way to work. Tonight I was a little early, so I thought I'd run in and check it out. After stepping into the store I realized that I need to come back when I had more than 20 minutes and actual money in my bank account. I thought I had died and gone to heaven. I would have preferred a few more Spanish items, but the tuna in olive oil and olives stuffed with anchovies look pretty awesome. Like I said, the budget hasn't been very great lately so I tried not to buy anything. Until I saw the digestive cookies. Cadbury dark chocolate digestives. I ate four in the car on the way to teach my class. I need to drive a different way to work or else I am in s

2 Days of Thankfulness

When I asked Mr. Fob last week if I should plan something for our anniversary, he told me that he was planning a surprise. I figured we'd just be going out to dinner or something. After we drove up to the ferry terminal I really started to wonder how late we were going to be staying out. It turns out that we didn't come home until 9 this morning. We had a lovely overnight stay here in a suite that was almost as big as our apartment, but had the added bonus of no children and a jacuzzi tub for two. It was perfect. Mr. Fob packed some frozen Thai food from Trader Joe's for dinner and we had a lovely breakfast this morning in our room (this inn puts it in the fridge for you the night before so you can warm it up and eat it when you want). We were rushed this morning because we had to get back early for our babysitter, so we didn't get to see much of the island or anything, but it was still a fabulous getaway. I guess today I am thankful for surprises.

3 Days of Thankfulness

Today I am thankful for six years of marriage. Happy anniversary to us! Make video montages at

4 Days of Thankfulness

This morning we had our first parent-teacher conference with S-Boogie's preschool teachers. I will admit to being a little nervous--it's hard as a parent to not feel judged when your children are being evaluated. It turned out to be a very positive experience. I'm grateful that she is in such a quality program that focuses on what preschool should be: learning social and cognitive skills and not just rote learning. They use a "core curriculum" with four major focus areas (social, cognitive, motor, and language) that are broken into smaller, specific goals. S-Boogie's teachers first praised her for her adaptability, her friendliness, her enthusiasm for writing and drawing, and her great motor skills. Then we set goals for her to work on. We actually don't have any motor skills goals because she is doing well in all areas there. In the social area we are going to work on her ability to manage her emotions (instead of bursting into tearful drama over every di

5 Days of Thankfulness

Today I'm glad that I had the opportunity to serve a mission (sorry for the picture--I don't have a better scanner than this). I'm grateful for the gospel learning and growth that happened during that time. I'm very grateful for the fact that my mission stretched me in so many ways and helped learn how to truly love others. I'm still trying to learn how to do that, but it was a good start. I also love the fact that while on my mission I met the wonderful man who is know my husband. I feel a little funny putting up a picture of us as missionaries. I had no idea at the time that we would come home and fall in love with each other. We served together in the same district for eight months, so about half of my entire time in Spain. I knew many elders who were rude, lazy, mean, vulgar, and various other forms of ugly. Mr. Fob was a caring, compassionate missionary who lead humbly and honestly. I was impressed by his lack of pretension and his willingness and enthusiasm f

6 Days of Thankfulness

Today I am thankful for rain. I love how everything here is so green and how the air always feels nice on my skin, even in the winter. This morning we went for a walk while it was raining, and the smell of rain mixed with coffee, cigarettes, warm pastry, and car fumes always reminds me of Madrid (it rains a lot there in the winter too). I've also realized that I like how the rain breaks up the monotony of clear weather and refreshes the earth. Rainy days can be a good time to stay inside, play with toys, and bake gingersnaps. One of my favorite songs is the following: Dark cloud is coming Headed straight for your heart Might get just a little bit crazy, baby Might try to tear us apart When the storm blows over Only the true love remains If we're ever gonna see a rainbow We have to stand a little rain Everybody wants love to be easy But it's never been that way Each love starts out with blue skies Sometimes those blue skies turn grey When the storm blows over Only the strong

7 Days of Thankfulness

Tonight we went to a spaghetti dinner over at the community center for family housing. I mostly signed up to go because it meant free food without having to cook (we did have to donate some canned goods for entrance), but I was glad tonight for the chance to spend some time with friends and to be a part of the community. My long-time readers will remember the great trauma we had with moving here last summer. I was a little reluctant to move back into campus housing after several years of living on our own, but after several months of fruitless long-distance apartment shopping and with only days left before homelessness I was happy to get a spot here. And I've really enjoyed this last year. I like our community, both the members of our ward and those who are not. I love the fact that my children have so many friends close by and many opportunities to play with them. I like our apartment too; it's a bit dark and cave-like, but it's still a comfortable home. We're getting

8 Days of Thankfulness

Today I am grateful for Dr. Seuss. He's pretty much the best children's book author ever. I remember one time as a kid on our way to the beach my mom pointed out his house and thought it was amazing. When I was four or five we all got Dr. Seuss books from the Santa at the Christmas party at my dad's work. For several years afterwards one of our favorite games was " oobleck ", in which the floor became oobleck and we had to jump on furniture, toys, or books to escape. My mom hated it. Dr. Seuss also wrote the most amazing ABC book ever. I had it memorized as a kid and have read it to both of mine. The interesting thing is, they have both loved it and through it have come to love the alphabet. S-Boogie called her letters " cees " for a long time, and Little Dude has recently started pointing out letters and saying " eee ". It's also one of the few alphabet books to recognize that in the English language the letter X most commonly appears wit

Holiday Plans

Mr. Fob and I spent our first Thanksgiving in our hotel room at the Park City Best Western. We got married on the Tuesday before Thanksgiving and spent a few days in Park City for our honeymoon. We'd planned to go out to eat for our meal, but the first snow of the season arrived on Wednesday night. We dug the car out and started driving, but only managed to make it as far as Alberstons. At least we found microwavable turkey dinners and some sort of "pumpkin cream" from the deli (it was nasty). Our second Thanksgiving was hosted at our house, with my sister and my brother and his wife. They were two hours late because she had just had a baby a few days before the holiday. I was newly pregnant with S-Boogie so they were the first ones we told. The third year we went down to Saint George to spend time with Mr. Fob's extended family. It was a fun trip, but our first time travelling with a baby. We didn't bring enough clothes to deal with the copious spitup, and we for

9 Days of Thankfulness

Tonight I am grateful for sleep. I've always had trouble getting to sleep, but once I'm there it's hard to get me back out of bed. Nothing makes me happier than snuggling up underneath warm blankets in my cozy pajamas. I'm also grateful that my children have both learned to sleep all night in their own beds. Little Dude usually goes to bed quite easily these days and he still takes a nice nap during the middle of the day. I think that small children sleep so much as a defense mechanism--if I didn't get that nap time break during the day we'd both be sick of each other by dinnertime. Tonight I'm exhausted; time to log off and go to bed!

10 Days of Thankfulness

The summer before my freshman year of high school I decided to try out for the drill team. Even though I was pretty much a nerd, I secretly envied the drill team girls. My tryout experience was pretty much like something out of Beverly Hills 90210. For some reason I decided to try out for "banners"--the girls who marched in front with the metal signs spelling out my high school's name. There weren't very many spots, so this was the most competitive section of the drill team, but I didn't realize that before I got involved. I lasted for only two days in the tryouts; the other girls laughed at me, wouldn't give me a practice banner, and basically made my life miserable. I went home, cried, and decided that I was just a nerd and that was never going to change. Thankfully I soon found a way to use my nerd cred. I'm not even sure how I heard about the Knowledge Bowl team, but it was a perfect fit. I loved Jeopardy! and the only physical skills I needed were fa

11 Days of Thankfulness

I've been trying to decide what I'm thankful for today; there are so many things. I want to echo my mom in being thankful for veterans. I'm thankful for Mr. Fob for helping me write a better statement of purpose for my applications; it's great to have someone who I can bounce ideas off of. Despite the fact that he envies my intelligence , I envy his articulateness even more because it doesn't matter how smart you are if it never manages to come out of your mouth right. Actually, I think today that I am thankful for clementines . Today we went to the store and I bought a big bag of fresh, new-crop fruit that was tasty and juicy. Plus my kids love them and I feel good that they are getting plenty of vitamin C.

12 Days of Thankfulness

Today I am thankful for church. Despite my post earlier about toddler trauma, I enjoy going every week. There's a reason why I keep showing up, and some weeks that reason is more clear than others. Today was a nice change for me. Mr. Fob came so we could watch S-Boogie in the Primary program. Ours was surprisingly uneventful, but very sweet and spiritual. S-Boogie declared "to be close to Jesus we say family prayer every night" clearly and loudly into the microphone, and I could see her singing almost every song (usually just the first verse, then she'd lose interest). After sacrament meeting Mr. Fob took Little Dude home with him because he was a bit too snotty and tired for nursery. I used that opportunity to stop by the stake offices and finish the interview process for my new recommend. I had a sweet little chat with a member of the stake presidency that I hadn't met before but who managed to provide some comfort and insight into my life. Then in Relief Societ

13 Days of Thankfulness

I'm thankful for having a washer and dryer in my home. It's a luxury that not many people in the world have. When we were first married we lived in Wymount and didn't have laundry in our apartment. Thankfully we were still childless and could get away with washing our clothes every few weeks. Shortly after S-Boogie was born we moved to a new apartment in Orem. It had washer and dryer hookups. Even better than that, my parents happened to have an extra washer and dryer and were coming out to Utah. They stuck them in the back of the Suburban and drove them across the country for us. We've had them for four years now and they're still working. I'm crossing my fingers on that--the washer's been making a funny noise for about three years. I had someone come look at it and he said that some part was breaking down and not worth replacing. So I'm holding my breath that we can hold on a little longer until next summer when we (hopefully) move to a new home. For n

14 Days of Thankfulness

Today I am thankful for reading. I'm glad that the printing press was invented; I've probably spent half of my lifetime reading something or other. I have always had this compulsion to investigate and find out about things. I love to learn and to know stuff. Books are my friends. Today S-Boogie folded up a paper, drew a picture and some lines on it, and then "read" me her book. It was a story about a wolf who lived in a castle and who had to fight some bad guys to get out and go to school. I'm glad that she's starting to love books too and that she understands the power of storytelling. Little Dude is also getting into reading and we often spend most of the morning reading books together before we go wait for the bus. Even though I'm not always a gung-ho patriot, I am very grateful to live in a country with freedom of the press and an amazing supply of information. Although I've read some who worry that our country is moving towards totalitarianism, I

15 Days of Thankfulness

Today I am thankful for General Conference. I just got my copy of the Ensign in the mail yesterday so I've finally had a chance to start reading through talks. Since having children I pretty much don't get anything out of watching conference, but I still like to try. Getting the Ensign is a good way to catch up on what I missed. I know that some consider General Conference to be a reminder of the centralized hierarchy that rules the church. I've always felt completely opposite; Conference reminds me of the fact that I belong to a global church. On one weekend we are all tuned in together, hearing the same messages and participating in a world-wide communion. I love the pictures in the conference edition of the magazine; I especially like that they have started to introduce some photos from around the world. Some day I would like to attend conference in person. Despite living in Utah for nearly ten years I never took the opportunity. I also realized while reading through t

16 Days of Thankfulness

I just saw this on another blog and thought it seemed like a cool idea. Plus it's a good way to celebrate NaBloPoMo . So every day until Thanksgiving I am going to post about something I'm thankful for. Tonight as I was driving home from work I was thinking about how thankful I am to have found a job that I like and can do well, more or less. Years ago I decided that I didn't want to be a teacher. I don't have a strong voice and I don't like to be on the spot or in charge. However, I have found that I really feel comfortable in front of a classroom. I love to talk, especially about stuff that I know well. I don't think I could handle a room of surly teenagers or anything, but college classes are great. This teaching job has been very different from my experience at BYU, but I've been having a great time. I feel so satisfied when my students remember things and put them together right; I love their enthusiasm for learning. This is a big motivator for me to ge

Recent Lessons Learned at Church

We should get there early enough to sit in the chapel. The metal chairs in the overflow make too much noise when children climb on them, and the gym offers Little Dude way too much room to run. We should not sit in the very back row of the chapel because Little Dude will color on the wall with crayons. We should not sit in the back row of Relief Society because Little Dude will climb on a chair and turn off the lights. We should not sit next to couples with sweet new babies because Little Dude will climb onto their laps and lovingly poke the babies' eyes out. We should not sit next to the lady with a cane because Little Dude will pick up the cane and swing it around. Mommy must always sit at the end of the bench or Little Dude will escape down the aisle. The moment when S-Boogie crawls under the bench and starts drawing on her arm is also the moment when there will be a silent pause in between testimonies. Then the entire congregation can hear mommy hissing "Get up. Crayons ar

Help--I'm a terrible parent!

Little Dude has proven that he has an amazing capacity for destruction. Therefore I wasn't surprised a while ago to find out that he has been chewing on his crib. I didn't think things were too bad, but then the other day I discovered that the wood has become pretty splintery. I'm lazy so I didn't do anything about it. Then I looked at his hands today after his nap: four little splinters. Crap. Now my neglect is hurting my baby. Does anyone out there have ideas on how I can fix this? I'm really not ready to move him to a big boy bed yet. I can't afford a new crib. But I'm also not quite lazy enough to let my kid get splinters.

Reading Roundup: October

Persepolis and Chicken with Plums by Marjane Satrapi I reread Persepolis because I decided to recommend it for our book group next month. I hope people like it; I had forgotten that the story is fairly dark and there are a few violent parts. That said, it's still one of my favorite graphic novels. I wasn't that impressed with Chicken with Plums, however. The story wasn't very engaging and it just didn't capture my interest as much. Breakfast at Tiffany's by Truman Capote I haven't ever seen this movie or read the book, so I decided to fix this problem for myself. Now I really want to see the movie, because the impression I had of the story was quite different from the book. I think I liked it, but I liked the short stories included in the volume even more. Divisadero by Michael Ondaatje The author does a fairly daring thing by suddenly switching stories in the middle of this book; sometimes that works, but this time it really didn't. I liked the first p

Wasted Time

A few weeks ago someone sent Mr. Fob an invitation to join Goodreads and then he sent one to me. It's the perfect site for all the bad qualities that I have: wasting time looking through lists, feeling superior to others because of my taste in reading, making pointless lists of things I've done in my life, finding more books to read, etc. I have certainly had a lot of fun on it so far and don't intend to stop, but it's crazy how many people out there are as bibliophilic as I am. Speaking of wasted time, last night after Smallville I discovered that CSI and Without a Trace are both on on Thursday night on CBS. I guess I won't be reading quite so many books in the future. At least not on Thursdays. Speaking of not wasted time, Mr. Fob and I went on a date tonight. Without the children. It was fabulous. We went over to the Bellevue Arts Museum , which is free on the first Friday of the month. There were several really interesting exhibits. The one that really got