Wednesday, January 30, 2008


Holy Shnikies! I'm one vistor away from 1,000 visits! Thank you to my frequent readers for making me feel so loved!

Book Review - Gilda Joyce Psychic Investigator by Jennifer Allison

This book is so cute and hilarious. Today when I went to work I had about 100 pages to go but I had to put it down and get my booty out the door. I thought about it (the book, not my booty) all day.

It's the story of 13 year old young lady who is very unique. She lost her father two years ago but has an upbeat attitude about life and the situations she finds herself in. She has a serious lack of tact which makes for many awkward incidents. She also loves to dress up in what she calls disguises, after all she is an investigator. I picture Junie B. Jones a little more grown up.

In this adventure ( I saw another Gilda book at the library! I can't wait to check it out.) she makes her way to San Francisco to visit some relatives she has never met and she quickly gets herself all up in their personal business.

I found this book in the young adult section at the library. That and the fact that the main character is 13 makes me think that this book has a target audience of 10 - 16 year olds. However, I'm not so sure I would let my child read this book. Besides the fact that Gilda lies, (which she totally recognizes as a problem and wrong, and she has pledged to make any lie that slips out come true) there are very grownup subjects such as suicide as one of the main topics of the story. Also there were several swears, which I found pretty disappointing. If this cute, fun, comedy has that kind of stuff in it, I find myself wondering what else is out there lurking in the Young Adult section.

Tuesday, January 29, 2008

Book Review - A Thousand Splendid Suns By Khaled Hosseini

This is the book my Book Club has chosen for February...... Now I absolutely can not wait to meet. This book was so good. Sad and heart wrenching in some parts, but still so good. It's the story of 2 women in Afghanistan starting when they are children. And that is all I'll say. It's a tale of survival and love.
This book and others like it give me such a great glimpse into what the people of Afghanistan have been going through for decades. Especially the women. It makes me so grateful for the life I have been given.
I recommend this book to anyone who has a weekend where they don't have to talk or interact with anyone else. I couldn't put it down and I stayed up until 2 am one night reading it. And at that point I had to force myself to stop. Then I woke up at 8:20 the next morning to finish it. So good.

Friday, January 25, 2008

A Year and A Half

Well, it's been a year and a half. We still don't have window treatments on any of the windows, but lucky for our neighbors, the house came with blinds. It's a small townhouse and it needs new carpet too but I feel so lucky have a cute house in such good condition.
Home ownership has been interesting. One of my favorite adventures was when the pantry door, which is accordion style, fell off it's track. Being in the laundry room/mudroom the track bent because I had opened the door too many times while it was crowded with laundry waiting to be folded. The door fell off and we had instant anxiety. But because we are geniuses we just took the track off turned it around so the part that was bent out of shape was on the other side where it didn't matter and then we put the door back on. All in 15 minutes. I was so proud of us.
18 months and I still feel so grateful, on a daily basis for my house, and I'm pretty sure I always will be. As many of you know my parents have patient and generous hearts and they let us live with them for 4YEARS! I still can't believe we did that to them for so long. And I'm sure it was harder for them than it was for us.
The biggest adjustment has been for Sam. He is a lonely boy now. He went from living with 7, sometimes more people. Including a grandma who had no problem giving him hot chocolate for breakfast every morning. I remember when we first moved in and Sam was only about 15 months old. My mom wooed him by taking him to her room everyday after work and giving him M&Ms. Need less to say, they became the best of friends. Then she wondered why he would wake up so early to see her before she went to work and why he woke her up on Saturdays instead of me. He's no dummy.
I am so grateful for all the blessings I have. My great home, my family - immediate and extended, amazing friends, our jobs, our reliable cars, and peace we receive from the knowledge we have of Christ's gospel. Even though our house may seem dangerously close to what I call the smelliest lake in the world, I pray we are building our foundation on a solid Rock.

Monday, January 21, 2008

Book Review - Run by Ann Patchett

This is a story about a statue and her family. An unconventional but loving family. A series of events is sent into motion that bring about discoveries no one in the family expected. This is a touching story of living and learning. The authors insight into thought and feelings is amazing and I grew to love each character. Though I read this book in about a day and half I will miss them.
I have read two other books by this author, Bel Canto, which I highly recommend and a non-fiction book called Truth & Beauty about a friend of the authors who lived with physical disfigurement and disability but was still a brilliant person with talents and demons.It's a really good book, but very sad. Every time she pulls me in and wraps me up in a world I have a hard time pulling myself out of.
I recommend this book, though I have to warn about the F-bomb. (It's the only swear in there, but it's in there about 8 times.)

Book Review - Sense and Sensibility by Jane Austen

Jane Austen. What else do I have to say? I found this book to be very enjoyable. Cute story, great characters, very witty. I have said before that Jane Austin is one of the funniest authors. I loved Mrs. Palmer and how she makes a statement and then contradicts herself in the next breath. Hilarious! There were some slow parts, but I am contributing those to the fact that my book was so heavy and awkward, but I won't get into that again. And though the happy ending is predictable there is something to be said for a happy ending. It just feels good. It took me longer to read than I like, but Jane Austen is just like that for me. Pride a Prejudice still holds a special place in my heart as a favorite, but I absolutely recommend Sense and Sensibility.

Saturday, January 19, 2008

Blogger Etiquette

I was going to keep this between myself, Matt and Becky, but since I have been egged on with rude comments in my comment section , it's all coming out.

I think there are certain rules governing socially acceptable behavior in our blogging world. If you commit to a blog you have a responsibility not to let your readers down. The rules are not hard. And to be honest, as the blogger Nazi (as Becky has dubbed me), I have only one rule. That is that your entries go no longer than four days apart. Is that too much to ask? Apparently it is for some.
As for a vote..... I assume this comment was referring to the fact that I am a self appointed blogger etiquette police. If you want the voice of the people heard then vote on the poll to the right, which, by the way, Matt told me to put up, because we were wondering. And as you all can see most people agree that more often is better.

Thursday, January 17, 2008

What the?

One day after school Sam shot up the stairs upon entering the house. Then ten minutes later I called him down for homework. This is what came down the stairs claiming to be my child:
Sam has a Rubbermaid container that resides under his bed and stores his costumes. Mostly super hero capes, and such. His Halloween costumes from the past are also there. Sam is wearing the ghost costume I made him when he was three. There is a white hat that goes with this costume. Obviously he couldn't find it. But the homework must go on!
That doesn't mean things didn't get a little carried away.

Tuesday, January 15, 2008


I just saw the freakiest commercial -
This guy was cooking something like fish and everyone in the house thought it was stinky so they were making faces and stuff and then they showed this guy pick up a live CAT and plug his nose with the CAT! GROSS! What could the dude possibly be cooking that could smell worse than a cat? CRAZY!

Monday, January 14, 2008


On most weeknights Matt records (On our old-school VCR, Oh how I wish we had a DVR) Jeopardy, which is on at 7:30, and then once Sam has gone to bed we compete. I love to win, but so does Matt. We both have our winning/losing streaks, we each have particular categories that we are good at, but I'd say that in general we are pretty evenly matched.
Matt's really good at the sports, of course and the math. We're both good at the ones that cover movies, and pop culture types of things. And I'm good at the literature/character ones.... And I've been getting better at the Art/ art history/artists stuff since I've been in the classroom. One night I kicked Matt's trash on some architecture questions because we had recently covered some in class. It was awesome. And the best part is when we surprise each other by knowing stuff.
This evening at the first commercial break we were tied 2-2. Then as we went into Final Jeopardy Matt was ahead by one. It was 8-7 and the category was Classic Movie duos. I bet all seven points and I can't recall the question, but the answer was Laurel and Hardy and I beat Matt! It was sweet.
It's nice to always have a formidable opponent living in the same house. (I'm not sure what formidable means, or how to spell it but it sounds like the right word to me.)

Sunday, January 13, 2008

Miksang Photography

As you may know I have been working as the instructing assistant to a middle school art teacher this year. Last semester, we had a unit about Miksang Photography.

"A traditional art form has been greatly facilitated by the advent of the digital camera. The art of Miksang was begun as a meditational tool by Shambhala Buddhists, but it has implications for painters and other creative people.The idea is to find joy and awareness by attending to the minor and seemingly insignificant--the colours, patterns and textures that exist in the close-up world. Miksang is a Tibetan word that means "good eye." Shambhalas think widespread use might lead to more compassionate and enlightened societies. " ~Robert Genn

One of the rules of Miksang is you don't set up the scene. You take it as you find it. For more info visit .

These are some of the photos I took. I have definitely seen better miksang photos, but these are some of the better photos I have taken.

Or at least they are some of my more interesting ones.

And there was a totally peaceful feeling in the air as I took them, not just for me, all of the students became seriously calm and peaceful as they walked around the park with their cameras. Not only when we took the pictures, but they were givien an assignment to put their miksang photos into a power point presentation. They loved it. Not only making them. but watching each others. It's funny to me because I don't consider myself artistic in any way, or earthy. But this is something I would do in my spare time for relaxation.

Tuesday, January 8, 2008

My Matty

Just a few thoughts about my Husby, Matt.
He is a great guy who's always doing nice things for me. He gets up every day and goes off to a job to provide for us and I rarely hear him complain about it. One of the nice things he is doing lately is reading. He started HP book 4 over just to make me happy. And he told me the other day that he is enjoying it. And last night he got up to check on Sam and as he got up and put the book down he chuckled about something he had just read. I loved it!
He plans dates for us at least twice a month. And these are usually things I like to do. Or movies I like to see.
He instigates things like family prayer and scripture study and family home evening.... even though I sometimes have a bad attitude about them. I'm so grateful to have a husband who is concerned about the spiritual well being of his family.
He makes me laugh, hard. I usually try not to show if I think he's funny, because it's usually at my expense. But there are times when we laugh together at things one of us has said or something Sam said, or something crazy we saw on TV, and it is so enjoyable to be with someone who has a similar sense of humor.
Matt is a good dad, who tries to be patient. He has been way more patient than I have been lately. And he is a playful father.
I really wish everyone could have a husband like my Matty poo.

Saturday, January 5, 2008

Big 'Ol Honkin' Book

My sweet husby got me Jane Austen's Complete Collection for Christmas. He is so thoughtful, right?
I've been reading Sense and Sensibility since before the New Year and I'm feeling like I should be done by now, but I'm not even 50 pages in. Here's my problem. It is one Big 'OL HONKIN' BOOK. Not Sense and Sensibility, that's only about 200 pages. The whole collection is in one book, paperback, over 1,100 pages and the paper of each page is thick, so this sucker is heavy and awkward. So as I'm reading one book that should be light and comfortable in my book loving hands, I have to hold all 7 books up at once.
It's not Matt's fault, of course. I lay all the blame on the publisher. What publisher in his/her right mind would create such a monstrosity? It has made something that should be so enjoyable and turned it into my daily work out. And since you all know I like to lay in my bed while I read, this is near impossible with this book.
I have read many a long book. I read the unabridged version of Count of Monte Cristo and it was over 1,200 pages and even from the same publisher. But the pages were thin and the overall size of the book wasn't as awkward and I found that book to be one of my favorites and I even plan on reading it again someday. And of course there are the last four Harry Potter books which are pretty hefty, but not heavy.
But this book just doesn't work and it makes me wonder if they take these kinds of things into consideration. For sure the content is satisfactory and has stood the test of time. So I guess I'll pump some iron and get back to it.
Matt, while reading over my shoulder has proclaimed me to be ungrateful.
I love you Matty poo!

Thursday, January 3, 2008

Back to the Rat Race

Well, today was my first day back to work. Oh man, that break went way too fast. All day, the only thing I could think about was how badly I wanted to be home reading a book. I wanted to go home so bad. It's a really good job, just hard to get back into the swing of things. So the good news is that I only have to go half day tomorrow. And then the weekend. Who ever thought that up was a genius and my new best friend. I'm thinking, well hoping, I'll be in a better state of mind on Monday.
Well this isn't a moan and groan blog. So on to happier things.
Tonight I got to take dinner to my friend who just adopted a baby girl! She is so sweet. And I held her for like an hour. Precious! I didn't want to let her go. Why is holding babies so nice?! It's one of my favorite things and I have to say one of the simple pleasures of my life.
One of my other simple pleasures is Chicken Kiev. I made some for my friends family, so of course I HAD to make some for us. What is it about food dipped in butter?! It's delicious.
Now I want to know your #1 Simple Pleasure. I don't know, maybe I'm going interactive.