Monday, December 31, 2012

New Year's Eve 2012

I think I used every single fancy gadget in my kitchen today.
Tarzan and I had the bright idea to make some fancy food for our New Year's Eve "party." Which is consisting of him and me, a pile of food and USC in the Sun Bowl. (What is with those announcers? They have apparently never called a game on national television before.)
We had the time and shrimp was on sale this week. 50% off regular is a decent price for the little buggers so we decided on Coconut Shrimp:
With Mango Dipping Sauce:
Then, because I found another recipe to try, we made Crab Rangoon:
It is one of Tarzan's favorite childhood foods and we have been looking for a substitute for years. This was close, but not enough cream cheese, I think, or too much everything else.
And to top it off - because I am in the groove with the soup - we had Tom Kah Gai:
Essentially, coconut soup. A little off balance for me. Not sure what to add to fix it next time but Tarzan loves/loved it, so he'll eat all the iterations while I figure out what I am missing.
Final score - USC: 7, and Georgia Tech: 21 (So not my favorite game of the year.)

This is me, stuffed.

Sunday, December 30, 2012

Record Day

I think today is the first day I have left for church when it was dark - well not really dark but cloudy and grey and early; 8am meetings - and come home when it was dark.
(No baptisms or anything, just regular RS President stuff.)
The leaving and arriving in the dark used to happen when we lived in the Frozen North but we were much, MUCH closer to the top of the world then we are now.
It was just a really long day. Which threw off the dinner/calling family/post church activities. Thank goodness tomorrow is an almost-holiday.

This is me and there has got to be a better system.

Saturday, December 29, 2012

Missing A Day

I'm not sure what happened to Thursday...
I only just realized that not only didn't I post that day, but I didn't even turn on my computer that day.
Tarzan and I slept a lot on Thursday. We've slept a lot every day. We've been using this week to recuperate from the rest of the year and especially December and I think we skipped a day.
Except for the missing a day so close to the end of my 90 streak, I don't know that anyone is bothered by the lapse.
Tomorrow we kind of have to get back to regular life - church and all - but then we have a few more days of rest and relaxation. Tarzan has until the 7th so he's not even thinking of the end of vacation yet.
I remember those days.
I wonder if there's a profession I could get into that let's me have the same vacation schedule that Tarzan gets but doesn't have me dealing with teenagers all day long?

This is me and it's been a nice couple of days.

Friday, December 28, 2012


Tarzan and I saw Skyfall last night. The latest in the little franchise known as James Bond.
It was interesting.
Exciting, implausible, explosive and 007 as always.
And Daniel Craig gets to flaunt his pecs a few times which is never bad.
I fear I am too practical though, as I wondered throughout the flick, how many times can a person almost die before they really do?
And M got some back story finally which was cool.
I thought Q was adorable. I would totally crush on him if he was real.
Silva was a really creepy villain, but his demise was a tad anticlimactic.
And despite the continuous jokes about him aging, James sure managed to thwart hypothermia there at the end with no sweat.
In all, it was a fun romp. We had an empty theater, which was nice and it was a great date.

This is me and who names their kid after a vegetable?

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

The Day After

Aaand just like that, the magic and anticipation of Christmas is done, the music is off the radio, the Valentine's candy appears on shelves, and all there is to do is go back to work and endure cold, dark days while we wait for spring to come.

This is me and aren't I a bundle of laughs today?

Tuesday, December 25, 2012

Merry Christmas 2012

This is me and Merry Christmas everybody!

Monday, December 24, 2012

The Night Before

'Twas the night before Christmas and everyone was gathered at Aunt Richie's holiday party.
Including her daughter and granddaughter, her sister-in-law, various friends, her husband and his son from a previous marriage - who hates her - her husband's nephew, his ex-wife, two daughters AND his new girlfriend who looked to be about 22 years old. (The nephew is about 70.)
All smushed into one tiny side room of a really nice restaurant.
The dirty looks exchanged around the room, the seating card rearranging, the PDAs, the snide remarks.
The food was fabulous, the dessert decadent, Tarzan was enthralling - several people commented on how fun he is to have at a party - polygamy was mentioned at least twice - there was a lot of laughing and I think we agreed to drive an RV to Vegas sometime next year.
And I heard someone exclaim as we drove off into the night, "Did you see what she was wearing?!"

This is me and if I'd had time I would have put it into iambic pentameter.

Sunday, December 23, 2012

Another One Bites The Dust

After all the stress, worry and scheduling conflicts; the changing of songs and then changing back; after the nerves and the tears and the practice...
The Christmas Sacrament Program is all over and it went okay.
Surely not our most professional sounding work ever - we miss you Rocketgirl and PhatFiddle and your violins - but it was all local talent and everyone tried their very best.
Tarzan and I sang, which was a first for us, but the final number (ours was a male/female duet) blew everyone away so I never thought to ask if we sounded good or not.
Now ALL the obligations are done and I have one whole day before Christmas to finish my gift shopping and baking and thanking of people.
Some specific one I need to mention:
Seth - thank you for mastering that piece in 2 days so Brenda didn't have to play alone. You're my hero.
Leafy - thank you for coming from across town to play the hairy piano part and then being okay when they skipped ahead and missed part of it. Coolest accompanist EVER.
SuperMom - thank you for playing for half of the numbers and then singing for the other half. I would quit if not for you.

This is me and I wonder if these things are worth all the stress and trouble, OR would it be as good without the stress and trouble?

Saturday, December 22, 2012

Would That I Had Learned

There are times when I feel all proud of myself for recognizing notes or being able to dink along on the piano for a bit.
Today, when I sat behind the man who not only could play Mannheim Steamroller's 'Stille Nacht,' but accompany two violinists who weren't sure where they were all the time, and still have it sound good, I knew my talents do not lie in that direction.
Not even a little bit.
I am a little envious of their skills, but even more glad I know people who can do it and are willing to share.

This is me and tomorrow will be good.

Friday, December 21, 2012

Not So Lucky

Well, I've lived through both 11:00s of the day and it seems the world isn't ending.
So it looks like I have to clean and do the laundry this weekend after all.
Crap-ola. I hope when it does come for real, it's before I break out the vacuum and the foaming cleanser.

This is me and there are miles to go before I sleep.

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Lock The Doors

All I can say, if tomorrow is the end of the world, is thank goodness.
I could use the rest.
I am so tired.
Not the sleepy-didn't-get-enough-shut-eye-last-night kind of tired, but the turn-off-the-phone-don't-go-out-please-leave-me-alone kind of tired.
This has been a tough year and a really hard month and I will be glad to see it all end. If the world ends too, well it's been nice while it lasted.
I'm going to take a nap.

This is me. Wiped. Out.

Wednesday, December 19, 2012

A Life Beyond #7

Yes, that is a tennis court in front of the pool:
And yes that is a pool in front of the back house.
No, that is not the main house. That is the pool house.
The main house is behind me as I take this picture, and it has it's own zip code.
I wonder what they would say if I told them my house is smaller than the tennis court...

This is me and who sweeps up at this shack?

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Drainage Matters

The down side to all this rain is that Stingy lives on a hill.
A very steep hill:
And in the manner of roads on steep hills, her street angles back and forth to allow the water to drain all the way to the sewer and not flood anyone's property:
My luck, or Stingy's, depending, being what it is, her driveway opens right where the water changes sides of the street:
So, when I stepped from the car today, it was into the wave of water washing down he hill. And it went right up, over my shoe, down into my socks. Both of them.
It was not good.
But it got a whole lot not better as the day went on.
First I walked the dog in my soggy socks. Then I went to work at Aunt Ritchie's and she has specific rules about no shoes in the house, but I couldn't walk around in my literally dripping socks, so I took them off too, but then my feet were super cold, so I wore the shoe covers she keeps to protect the carpet from service personnel.
That was marginally better.
The house boy noticed my socks dripping onto the garage floor and suggested they go in the dryer - but even by the time I left to go home they hadn't dried out enough - and my shoes were still sopping, so it's been a day.

This is me with - albeit warm - wet feet.

Monday, December 17, 2012

Mystery Solved

So this is why nothing grew in that pot:

This is me and it all makes sense now.

Sunday, December 16, 2012


It's raining today and I enjoy the benefits that come from the rain, however, I am feeling a little wimpy for feeling the cold.
It's 54 degrees outside in the wind and the rain today.
Once upon a time, when I lived in the Frozen North, 54 degrees meant we shed out jackets and ran around so excited that summer had finally come. Of course, that was after six months of snow, boots, fur hoods and numbers in the negative numbers. The WAY negative numbers. So I suppose it's like they say and it's all relative.
Plus, we don't have insulation or central heating in our house now and we had both when I was growing up.

This is me and it's a different world down here.

Saturday, December 15, 2012

Harsh Reality

What to say on days like this? It is a crying shame that some people feel their only recourse is a gun.
Turned on others or themselves.
Sad that lives can be shattered by a stranger's bad mood.
All we can do is hug those we love and try to be nicer to everyone around us.
Maybe a smile or a handshake would have helped, maybe not. At least we would have tried.

This is me and what to say?

Friday, December 14, 2012


While I dream of this:
The blog might be the only thing getting decorated this year. We're lucky if we manage to hang a wreath on the door:

This is me and I love the season, hate the scheduling.

Thursday, December 13, 2012

The Light Dawns

When Tarzan and I were first married I would hear tales of his mother staying up until the wee small hours of the morning working on lessons for school, editing papers, planning Visiting Teaching excursions or sending letters to family.
I will admit to thinking she was nuts.
Why on earth would anyone stay up that late/early? Do it tomorrow or plan it better and then it would all be done in a timely manner.
Ah. The naivete of youth.
I respectfully ask for Gamma's forgiveness for ever thinking she wasn't better organized; when the truth is, she was SO organized she had everything scheduled down to the last minute detail and was going to get it all done or the delicate balance she had made between work, family and church would collapse.
Or at least, that's what I'm thinking as I stay up late to make gingerbread men for Christmas plates that Tarzan is taking on the last day of school - tomorrow - for his fellow teachers.
Sure, I could have done it a different night this week, but all the days are scheduled out the wazoo. With weddings and parties and shopping and weather and family and the business and the car being sick - it's back now and just fine - and all that stuff, I understand the scheduling conflicts, the emergencies that come up, assignments that someone falls through on, or get changed.
And just plain  not having enough hours in the day.
I am reminded of a book we used to read when I was a kid with the Sesame Street characters and Ernie keeps putting "one more thing," and "one more thing" into Bert's bath until there isn't any room for Bert.

This is me and as it is I need a week to get caught up to where I'm only behind a little.

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

A Life Beyond #6

It was a pretty cool house anyway. Pool, great kitchen, sun room, huge bedrooms, great closets, and then...
And then.
I walked into the "family room" and saw this on the wall:
Oh yes it is.
And lest you think I am kidding, here is the label:

This is me and I saw The King's suit.

Tuesday, December 11, 2012

Transportation Issues

My car is sick, poor thing. Apparently the regulator for the motor that raises and lowers the window on the rear passenger side has failed.
And I need a new one.
Which is fine, except they're keeping my car for 3 days, 3! DAYS! to diagnose the problem (yesterday), order the part (today) and install it (tomorrow).
This puts a tiny crimp in our regular, tightly, down-to-the-second, don't-forget-the-last-minute-detail, scheduled days that Tarzan and I have worked 12 years to perfect.
He's on his bike for school since it's a mere 3 miles from home to there. And I have his car for the 15miles is it for me. As neither the bus nor train go to the neighborhoods where I work that is not a viable option. (I've thought it was a bit stupid of the neighborhood councils. All their 'help' come via public transportation. How do they get up and down the hill?)
Here's hoping this doesn't happen too often. We live in a car dependant city.

This is me and have just the one vehicle for a bit.

Monday, December 10, 2012

Not A Good Omen

An indicator of how my month is going; I intended to send BHB and Seth a program outline for the Christmas sacrament meeting in two weeks.
Instead I sent them the list of Christmas presents for the entire family, including the one planned for them.
So, now I have to rethink my gift planning and hope BHB has a short memory.

This is me and it was not my finest move.

Sunday, December 09, 2012


Why are there not any green or yellow or PINK buildings in downtowns?

This is me and it would be pretty.

Saturday, December 08, 2012

Additional Job

It's not in the handbook but apparently one of my duties as Relief Society President can be photographer:
I can't say it was all sunshine and roses:
But in my defense they were really booking it up the aisle.
Others were much better:

This is me and I'm not giving Ansel or Annie a run for their money.

Friday, December 07, 2012

Long Day

If I may say, after a 14-hour day of driving across the largest geographical city in the country - if not the planet - twice; all for the good of an event wherein I am not related to anyone involved, spending large amounts of money that isn't mine, and doing a lot of talking on the phone while in said traffic...
After all of that, may I say that missionaries, especially, ESPECIALLY the elders, should not be allowed to plan/manage/heck, even comment on a wedding.
Not even their own.

This is me and it had better go well tomorrow.

Thursday, December 06, 2012

White Christmas

So, tonight was like the Perfect Storm; but in a good way.
It began a few months ago when ATL got an email about a movie showing. She gets them frequently and sometimes the movies are good - we saw 'How The West Was Won' a while back - and sometimes the movies are epic.
Like tonight.
ATL got tickets for us to go and see 'White Christmas' on the big screen:
Actually, on a big screen on a lawn next to some studio lot. And all the major actors daughters came and spoke for a few minute before the show. Which was very sweet.
The movie was as adorable as always - even Tarzan said it was good - and then at the end, when the snow comes to save the inn, the hosting group had fans turned on and blew fake snow all over the audience. It was also very cute and romantic.
It wasn't soap snow, which I thought was a decent fake alternative, but it looked good. In fact, in this picture ATL took, it looks like a veritable blizzard:
But it was fun and the movie was of course excellent and we made it on time - quite a feat for us making it from our neighborhood to this one in only 40 minutes - and everyone ate (also quite an accomplishment) and it was all twelve kinds of awesome.

This is me and I love this perk of living in The Jungle.

Wednesday, December 05, 2012

A Life Beyond #5

When I was working in architecture there was a lot we had to do with fire walls and area separations, so I am no stranger to doors in odd places and hold opens and all that sort of thing.
I have never seen a door in an open hallway though:
And it's all the way up:
On an open air hallway. What's the area that is being separated? It's a little weird:
This is me and I really want to hear the Building Department's reasoning for this one.

Tuesday, December 04, 2012

Rice Krispies

I love Kellogg's Rice Krispies. Hands down my favorite cold breakfast cereal.
And did you know they are puffier and take longer to absorb milk than any store brand iteration of the same type?

This is me and even breakfast teaches me.

Monday, December 03, 2012

Via The Facebook

I do not love Facebook as a lot of people do. It's good for getting pictures to and from across the world and it's nice to catch up with old and new friends, but I guess the point is that I don't see every trend or cute picture that goes on because I don't visit that much.
And that's okay with me.
It also means that when I do see something good or appropriate, I find ever so much more interesting because I haven't seen 25 other things, equally as good or appropriate.
The short version is, when I signed on today I was met with a statement from RHM that perfectly captured my state of being these days. With her permission I quote it to you now:
"With great power comes ridiculous responsibilities."
Summed up the whole day in six words. I need to be that efficient and then I might not have the challenges I do.

This is me and it's so true.

Sunday, December 02, 2012


It's seldom that we get what is termed "weather" out here in the Jungle. At least weather like the rest of the country gets.
So when it does come, it's a surprise - people SO freak out on the roads - but it's also cool and exciting because it's new.
We're getting some rain this weekend and sometimes, when it takes a break, we get crazy clouds:

With the sun setting behind the rain clouds and the new clouds rolling in over the top, it looks nice:

This is me and it's nice.

Saturday, December 01, 2012

Can I Get An Amen?

The following may be slightly offensive to some peoples, but the point is extremely valid:
Many thanks to whoever comes up with these things. I wish I was that witty.

This is me and you can only blame spell-check so much.

Friday, November 30, 2012

Weird Dream #42

I wonder if my weird, remembered dreams come in clumps for a reason.
Last night I dreamed that the coaches from USC and Notre Dame met and - for kicks and giggles - decided to coach their respective teams to lose during the upcoming match. They bet money on who could do a better job. Whoever won the game, would not win the bet. So the teams met to play and for the first half it went fine. No one knew it was different, the teams were scoring low but it was the first half and then one team scored again and one coach thought the other one had broken the bet so he started to coach his team to win. The other coach noticed and then the bet was off except that the players found out about the bet so they didn't want to play anymore. Then there were delays of game penalties and the players were angry and fighting and then there were more penalties and then the referees found out about the bet and disqualified both teams and the fans didn't really know what to do so they were mad and there was more fighting.
Then I woke up feeling frustrated and bereft.

This is me and I really need to get my subconscious studied.

Thursday, November 29, 2012

Fuzzy Fingernails

Initially I was super creeped out, and after reading, the whole rest of the blurb seemed made up so that there would be a place for these:
But after I looked closer they're kind of cool the second time around.

This is me and I would have spent time doing this rather than my projects when I was in school.

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

A Life Beyond #4

This is not new, nor is it unique to the neighborhood in which I work, but it is very common and not something I have ever considered. I like my shiny stainless steel appliances.
Is it a cupboard:
Or a fridge:

This is me and don't ask how long it took me to find the fridge in this place.

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Weird Dream #41

I am not sure where it all came from this time but it was a long, plodding dream last night.
We - me, Tarzan, Stingy and a lot of other family - were on a road trip. A long road trip. I don't know where we were going but we were well packed and looking at pictures the whole way. We stopped a lot of times for snacks and for bathroom breaks and then on one stop Tarzan got caught up in a courtroom case, defending a teenager who wasn't getting good representation from his lawyer. But the opposing council kept asking double negative questions and Tarzan didn't answer them correctly so the trial kept getting longer and we were trying to get back on the road and I wasn't leaving without him but the case just wasn't going well and I was torn between everything.
Plus the van needed gas.

This is me and it took a lot of effort just to dream it.

Monday, November 26, 2012

I Haz Some Keys

I realized today that my life is governed by keys.
I have almost a zillion of them. For the house; four doors (front and back each with an inner and outer door. With locks), the gates, the shed, both cars, the bike locks...
I have keys for church too. The outer doors, to the gym from the courtyard, for the offices, the gates, the trash, library, storage...
Aunt Ritchie's house has a large number of them too. And while I don't carry them home at night, I use them all day long. The cars, the gates, the house's front and back doors, the desks, the shed, storage, the china cabinets, the jewelry drawers, the art cabinets, the daughter's houses, the key box where we store all the keys...
And then, my other daily duty; showing houses for Stingy. Of course there are keys for that. Sometimes multiples of each, for doors, and gates and security lock boxes and whatever.
It's nuts the number of keys I use/carry in a day. No wonder my hands hurt all the time.

This is me and if only one worked on a safe at the bank...

Sunday, November 25, 2012

It Could Be Worse

I may have mentioned how Sundays are not the days of rest that were promised. There is a lot to do for the Relief Society President each week and in some areas of the world there is more than others. With early morning meetings and activities to plan, lessons to teach and delegation to follow up on, my Sunday is a longer day than any other in my week.
But today, I got home a tiny bit earlier than usual. Since Tarzan was out driving with ATL I had an entire blissful hour to myself.
I sat down and read with a cat in my lap:

This is me and it could have been worse.

Saturday, November 24, 2012

Last Regulation Game

It has been a tough season for USC.
Ending of the stupid sanctions, wondering if Matt Barkley coming back or going pro, the promising start and then we lost to Stanford - but they're a good team this year - and things were looking up after the four wins in a row and but then the whole Oregon, UCLA thing happened and we weren't looking good.
I was amused by the article in the paper this morning, and by a sports writer who typically hates USC, but it gave me great hope for the final game of the season. I know, Notre Dame was ranked #1 in the nation but crazier things have happened in college football.
However, it was not to be, and during this game and others this year, I really have to wonder what our coach is thinking. I have tried to be supportive of Lane Kiffin, taking over after Pete bailed, but there have been some play calls I just do not get. Not as well executed as it could have been.
Max Wittek did a really good job, considering, but two interceptions, and a bunch of receivers who can't hold on to the ball just didn't get it done.
So sad.

This is me and it wasn't all I wanted for Matt's Barkley last season.

Friday, November 23, 2012

Post Turkey

Does anyone else think Thanksgiving is the best holiday ever?
Family, friends, food - lots of good food - football. No specific place to be, no demands but a great long weekend, removed from regular work and responsibilities.
I begin to see why Gamma likes it so.

This is me, full, happy and home for a few uninterrupted days. Perfection.

Thursday, November 22, 2012

Thanksgiving 2012

I am not sure how we got here again so quickly but it's Thanksgiving time.
(Which means Christmas is just down the road and I am SO not ready.)
I am particularly thankful for the holiday this year though, which affords me the chance to remember that I am amazingly blessed and incredibly fortunate.
Despite my whining and complaining about how much I have to do and how tired I am and blah, blah, blah, I am thankful. And grateful for the much I have been given.
In that vein, my three kernels for this year:
  1. Tarzan, Tarzan and Tarzan. If I only had him to be thankful for I would count myself lucky. He is the best person for me. He's smart, funny, talented, modest, patient, appreciative, cute and he loves me far more than I deserve. I am so thankful we get to be together for all eternity. 
  2. Sleep. This is a little more mundane, but I do love the chance I get to sleep each night. I love our bed, and sleep is so unappreciated by those who get to do it most. (That would be children.)
  3. Friends. In the past year Tarzan and I have made an effort to get together with our friends (all two of them) for a dinner or movie or something. It's nice to have good friends that we can talk with, eat with, laugh with and discuss with. They're fun and smart and very cool and we have a good time together. It's a blessing. 
I hope you all have equally as special things to be thankful for this year.

This is me with a Happy Thanksgiving everybody!

Wednesday, November 21, 2012

A Life Beyond #3

These houses that I show are not always well laid out - this one has three wings and you can't get between them without going out to the front foyer and taking a different path, like it's a maze or something - but they are always extravagantly arranged and decorated:
I can't imagine what I would use the room for. None of my friends would feel quite right sitting on the chairs and I know *I* wouldn't. I'd be too afraid of dropping a hair or something.

This is me and I wouldn't want to have to dust it.

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Reflections On The Sixth Year

Happy Blog-iversary to me!
To paraphrase someone more famous than me; "it was the best of blogging years it was the worst of blogging years."
It's been six years since I started to write this web log, and while there was a large gap at the end of the summer there, I'm striving to end the year strong.
I've complained much-ly about how busy we are, and how we seem to be getting busier, but during the revisiting of our wedding day - thanks to finally getting to see our photos again - Tarzan and I realized we have ALWAYS been this busy. From the day we said we do, we've been running. Running here, there and everywhere.
I suspect we're feeling our age and just are not recovering like we once could. So it feels harder and longer and we are more tired.
But enough whining.
Though, maybe that's my schtick? The whining...I'm very good at it.
Anyway, thank you all for reading and I hope that more of you will comment in the future and if I get some sleep I might be back this time next year.

This is me and I so did not appreciate naps when I was able to take two a day.
This time last year: Reflections on the Fifth Year.

Monday, November 19, 2012

Hamburger Joint

Tarzan and I had to run an errand this evening, right over dinner time.
We don't eat out a lot  - time and money and location (it's a long way from our house to any establishments, let alone good ones) and logistics.
But tonight all things worked in our favor so we tried out a relatively new hamburger place - perhaps you've heard of 5 Guys?
In most respects, it was a typical burger joint, but the free peanuts offered throughout the place was a new twist.
The fries were really good - fat but crispy and salty.
The hamburgers were big and complex and I really liked the option of a "Little Burger," about half the size of normal, which was more than enough for me.
The really interesting thing about the place is that 5 Guys doesn't advertise. They have a website but no commercials, flyers or billboards. Most of their notoriety comes from word of mouth, which I figure had to have been slow at the beginning but also kept their costs down.
Fortunately the food is good, so it's become one of the next big things.
Crazy concept. But I like the product.

This is me and we are spreading the word.

Sunday, November 18, 2012


So, there's a wedding coming up at church. It's not usual for us to have to plan and execute a ceremony - typically weddings are at the temple and it's all taken care of - but this is a special circumstance and so in a few weeks we're hosting a wedding at the church.
What I need from you, dear readers, is a suggestion for music for Tarzan to learn to play in time for the wedding. He's good, but doesn't have a lot of time to spend on learning hard stuff.
We need a nice piece or series of easily blendable pieces that are pretty, not hymns, fairly simple piano works that are also appropriate for a wedding.

This is me and it's a lot to ask but you're good peeps.

Saturday, November 17, 2012


I neglected to mention during my recap of the summer that my baby brother, LBO, started college this fall and had to be outfitted, packed up and shipped out. I didn't get to go with him - for the first time ever in my career as oldest child, I missed an inagural trip to college (Tarzan's parents were in town that weekend) - so I made sure to be on the receiving end of his trip home for Thanksgiving.
As he gets all of next week off, he tripped down today to avoid all the insanity of next week's traveling.
(Tarzan gets a whole week too. Why didn't I get a whole week off for Thanksgiving when I was in school? So unfair.)
He seems to be getting along well up north at school, making friends, going out, getting good grades. Even doing laundry.
The one thing he seems to have not found is a good haircut place so that's the priority when he's home next week:

This is me and our mother will be so disgusted and happy.

Friday, November 16, 2012

Too Soon!

I'm pretty sure I write this post every year.
Sure, the economy is terrible and retailers (also the government) want us to spend, spend, SPEND this Christmas/Hanukkah/Quanza season.
And the day after Thanksgiving is the busiest shopping day of the year
But what is with the decorations and the banners and the music already?
We have an entire week to go until the earliest Thanksgiving Day possible and already the Christmas lights are out and on and the banners are up and the radio is INSANE to be all Christmas, all the time, already.
Is there no money to be made from Thanksgiving, that we have to skip it and go straight from Halloween to Christmas?

This is me and can't we just wait one more week?

Thursday, November 15, 2012

A Life Beyond #2

This is slightly less dramatic than the inaugural episode.
Still, it's not every house that has one of these either:
There are two more rows of seats behind the one you can see.
Each with it's own cup holder and space for snacks.
The seats recline, with footstools.

This is me and I could live with that.

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Besides Pancakes

Does anyone have ideas for what to do with literally 1/2 a gallon of maple syrup?
We had a "service project" for the Young Women of the Stake and they needed Mrs. Butterworth containers - but empty ones - with about a week's notice.
So I have A LOT of maple syrup in my kitchen.
We don't even live in an area getting snow this time of year, so no making candy in the back yard.
And there's only so many times one can eat pancakes and waffles.

This is me and it could get sticky.

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Lights Out

This was not a good day for light bulbs in the house.
First the dining room blew a bulb when I was setting the table for dinner.
Then the light went out in the dryer while I was doing laundry. (Does anyone know how to fix the light in the dryer?)
Then the lamp in the bedroom burned out, the fixture in the living doesn't work consistently anyway and it was having a bad night too.

This is me and I need stock in GE.

Monday, November 12, 2012

Or Maybe I Need An iPad Mini

As much as I love my iPhone - and I do, I like it a lot - it was not made for a left handed person. I had to organize all the icons the other way on the home screen because I kept hitting Twitter when I wanted Messages and texting one handed is just so irritating. I can't shift or add smileys or insert numbers...
I know - then use two hands Jane! - but when walking or sitting at an open house or trying to surreptitiously get a message out when in the middle of something else...
Plus with my trigger finger acting up I can't bend part of my hand too easily.
Maybe it's just that my fingers are too short.

This is me and I need to learn to focus I guess.

Sunday, November 11, 2012

Veteran's Day 2012

This is part of a poem by an Institute professor of mine from college. He was in the Vietnam War and despite the long hours he stood, teaching, in front of us, the number of activities he went to with us, we didn't know until after we graduated that he had lost a leg in the conflict:

...And now, their offering accepted,
Their sacrifice men will laud,
Because, in offering their gift to man,
They really gave to God.
Thank you Brother Parson.
And thank you Grandad, who was born as WWI began and served on a hospital ship in WWII:
Thanks to them all.
This is me, on Veteran's Day.

Saturday, November 10, 2012


And just like that, my lovely sleep high, earned last weekend when we turned the clocks back, is gone.
(I know, you peeps with children do not love the time changes, but I surely do love this one in the fall. I always feel cheated in the spring.)
All it takes is one evening with more than the usual stuff to do, someone needs to be picked up at a different time than usual, preparations for the Saturday activity take longer, dinner is later and then bed is later, rising is earlier and now, no more feeling lovely and well rested in the morning.

This is me and I made it last almost a whole week.

Friday, November 09, 2012

Apparently It's Not Enough

How many people do you think get the police called for them to make sure they are okay?
Apparently it's just me then...
One of the inactive sisters in our ward (church congregation) calls me fairly often. I suspect she's lonely with only her art (she paints) and cats for company. But we have a love of cats in common and I don't live too far from her so I drop by on occasion to see her and take her some food. Whatever she needs.
Yesterday she called me again but I wasn't able to answer because I was driving - remember I am a law abiding citizen - so I let it go to voicemail. She called me several times throughout the day when I couldn't answer - I did A LOT of driving yesterday - and my phone was doing something weird and then I also work in a neighborhood where the cell reception is terrible. So I got a lot of voicemails from her.
None of this is very remarkable at all.
She called the police last night because she couldn't get a hold of me and wanted to make sure we were okay. Which is sweet but a little weird.

This is me and the RS thing is bigger than I knew.

Thursday, November 08, 2012

In Six Weeks

About that trigger finger that has been bothering me - I finally got to see the doctor today for it.
(I know, but Dr. Z is a busy man.)
Turns out my trigger finger does not have enough of a trigger to warrant a Cortisone shot, so it's painful stretching, bending and squeezing exercises for me and my index finger with massive amounts of ibuprofen for the next six weeks.
Then we will revisit Dr. Z and see what he thinks. It might be better by then, OR after all the fun therapy, I might get a shot anyway.

This is me and my index finger.

Wednesday, November 07, 2012

A Life Beyond #1

While showing houses for Stingy I see many styles of decorating and interior design. Some of it is cool, some is creative and some is downright weird. In fact, there are so many I might start a weekly thing to document it.
The first installment would have to be this.
Imagine walking into your HUGE master closet and seeing this everyday:
So not even kidding a little bit.

This is me and it's a different sort of life they lead.

Tuesday, November 06, 2012

Election 2012

We voted:
This is not enough though, because many of the things that need addressing were not even on the ballot today. So I have some suggestions for the leaders of our great nation for the coming months.
  • Have a single term for each president. 4, 5, 7 year term, that's fine, but make it only one and then the parties wouldn't spend the first four years in office campaigning for the next four and they might actually get something done.
  • Consider other parties. We look like a two party country but we don't need to be. We could really benefit from an independent getting a shot at the White House.
  • Eliminate the electoral college. We don't need that thing any more, except it makes it easier for CNN to project the winner, but I think it ought to be the popular vote that decides the president. Majority rules and all that.
  • Make the job of senator and house of representative be a part time job - they only meet 45% of the time anyway and not everyone sits in each session - and when they're done, they're done. No pension, no security force, no lifelong codling and no insider trading or voting for their own salary raise.
  • Make election day a holiday and make voting mandatory. Use ink on our fingers to eliminate voter fraud and have it be harder to get into our bank accounts if we don't vote - fines or something.
This is me, doing my civic duty.

Monday, November 05, 2012

Sad But True

I caught this on FB the other day:
And I laughed so hard. It's true, so true. It's reasons like this that I am glad I don't live in Th Frozen North anymore. 75F in November anyone?

This is me and I've lived it, so I know.

Sunday, November 04, 2012

Ode To Twelve Years

Now I know why people pay large amounts of money for photographers.
When Tarzan and I were married - twelve years ago today - digital photography was not really a thing yet. It was, but for things like a wedding most stuff was still being shot in analog. And along with that comes the print discussions and issues.
We got certain images bound in a book. But there was no CD for us to take home and get our own prints from later.
Many years, more money and a few slight issues later we had the original negatives in our possession. However, they were not standard 35mm negatives, no, we had 120mm negatives which can't be scanned on a regular scanner, or on most commercial ones without paying A LOT more money. Again.
I dithered about it for a while and Tarzan finally got tired of me and bought a flatbed scanner with an attachment for 120mm (which was less expensive than getting someone else to do the scanning) so we could scan our negatives and finally, FINALLY have digital copies of our wedding photos.
I finished the scanning a few weeks ago and got our first look in 12 years at our images.
And realized what "retouching" actually means:
Some of the flaws were less noticeable and then we realized how young we were back then:
And then we looked at our families and how young THEY were:
The breakdown of the above photo is as follows, starting on the far left; the adorable flower girl now co-manages a business; the next girl is married, has 2-1/2 kids and has lived in three countries; the next girl has a master's degree and dates like a fiend; the next one got married this last summer and works with animals, curing cancer or something; the girl closest to me has been married, divorced, works as an interior designer and had lived in 12 apartments in her city; Tarzan's brother (going down the other side) has been married, widowed, married again, with two kids; the next brother works for the state, making sure we're free of ingested toxins, is married and has three kids; the next brother is a NASA scientist with a wife and baby; the next brother returns from his mission in three months; and the last one on the right just started college.
A lot of stuff has gone down since we got married - and that's just family - but we have learned so much and done so much and even though we're smack in the middle of a wild ride, I wouldn't want to be in the cart with anyone else:

This is me - HAPPY ANNIVERSARY Tarzan!

Saturday, November 03, 2012

Football Opinion

I haven't talked a lot about football this fall. Mostly because having missed posting in September I was so far behind as to make it almost pointless. We have watched all the USC games this season, with high hopes at the beginning, and then with a little sadness after the two losses.
Three after tonight. We played well against Oregon, made them fight for a lot of it, got a little lucky on some calls, held down the interceptions which is what killed us last week against Arizona, yet still lost.
In the post game reports on SportsCenter the commentators were rehashing the games of the day - as they are wont to do - and the Alabama and LSU game came up. I was happy for 'Bama - Roll Tide! - but it was a little mean to sit the LSU coach down and after asking all the questions about what his team did well and how he's going to get them prepared for the next game to make him recite what the other team did well.
Bad enough the guy lost, he has to critique the team that beat him?

This is me, and that's a little salt in the wound.

Friday, November 02, 2012

First Dinner Party

I'm not sure we can call it a dinner party if there were only four of us but for what we think is the first time in almost twelve years of marriage, Tarzan and I had another couple over to eat with and chat with and "hang" with.
We've had family over for dinner before, and the missionaries, and RHM is one of our favorite guests. (I don't know if it counts as the same sort of event if the person who you ate dinner with last night is also sleeping on your couch and eating breakfast with you in the morning.)
But this time, we invited a couple that we know from church. They are also interested in family history and from the same part of the world as Tarzan's ancestors, and so we had some fun with making Polish food and chatting about the typical things. (How we met our spouses, where we grew up, what was in the sauce, allergies, the ususal.)
They were here three hours and I think everyone liked the food, the company and the conversation.
No one was required to have a good time, no rides were involved before or afterwards and it was nice.

This is me and we hosted other grown-ups.

Thursday, November 01, 2012

Who's Got Talent?

Tarzan thinks I hurt myself on purpose but I know that is not the case.
He also wonders if there's a problem in my brain that makes me so clumsy, and I have to say, I am starting to wonder.
I was in the shower the other day, shaving my legs - I am so nearsighted that I have to fold yoga/pretzel style to see what I am doing - and I simultaneously nicked my ankle, causing it to bleed and sting in the soap, almost dropped the razor and in catching it, sliced part of my fingernail away:

This is me and if not a disease, then it is a serious skill.

Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Halloween 2012

This year, I'm going as exhausted:

This is me, HAPPY HALLOWEEN everybody!

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Daily View

For the next two weeks, Stingy's (Tarzan's cousin) nanny (for the 16 year old) will be out of town, which means no one is available to walk the dog every morning.
Enter me.
I am one of these employees who can be asked to file, laminate, dice, chop, bake, dig weeds, get groceries, run an open house, return a phone call, make a reservation, cancel a reservation, online shop, show a house and now walk the dog.
(All in the same day.)
I've never walked a dog before. We've always had cats, and a cat would throw up in my shoe if I suggested a leash or taking them for a walk.
It's been interesting.
Fortunately, the dog is so starved for attention that she doesn't mind my inept attempts to keep her in line. And she's decently sized and not about to need carrying, which is a plus:
(She also doesn't like to sit still for photos. That was the best I could get.)
What kills me is the neighborhood I walk through with this dog. Stingy's house:
The house next door:
And the view from the top of the hill:

This is me and it could be worse.

From Whence You Cometh