Sunday, December 30

12 Days of Christmas

I am amazed by the generosity of people. It's so easy to believe we live in cold hard world where people don't care about each other. Then someone will do something to prove me wrong. I'm so thankful that they do prove me wrong. It restores my faith in humanity. This Christmas season I've seen this generosity in action several times.
Here's an example- Someone chose Zeke and Amanda's family to do the 12 Days of Christmas. We still don't know who it was. There are some very likely candidates but no definite discoveries. It's almost more fun to not know although it is driving me crazy! It was such an amazing gift, here's the list. I do need to explain one thing before I make the list- Amanda loves Cool-Whip. It's something she's discovered since moving to America. They don't have it in New Zealand. She eats it on anything she can think of to eat it on. So whoever did this obviously knows her well.

Day 1: A Freezer! Yes, a freezer. An upright full size freezer. And a tub of Cool-Whip
Day 2: 2 frozen lasagnas and a tub of Cool-Whip
Day 3: 3 frozen pizzas and a tub of Cool-Whip
Day 4: 4 boxes of freezer bags and a tub of Cool-Whip
Day 5: 5 packages of frozen cookie dough and a tub of Cool-Whip
Day 6: 6 steaks and a tub of Cool-Whip
Day 7: A 7 pound ham and a tub of Cool-Whip
Day 8: 8 pounds of chicken breasts and a tub of Cool-Whip
Day 9: 9 pounds of ground beef and a tub of Cool-Whip
Day 10: 10 gallons of ice cream and a tub of Cool-Whip
Day 11: 11 bags of frozen fruits and veggies and a tub of Cool-Whip
Day 12: A box of 12 burritos, 12 ice cream sandwich's, 12 fish sticks and a tub of Cool-Whip

I'm still in awe!!

Friday, December 28

Friday's Feast


AppetizerName 2 things you would like to accomplish in 2008.Travel- I want to go to Germany, England and the Pacific Northwest this year. I’m keeping my fingers crossed I can make it work.
Go to school- I’m registered for winter semester so I’m all set. I’m excited and nervous at the same time. It’s been so long!

SoupWith which cartoon character do you share personality traits?I really don’t know. I rarely watch cartoons so I’m not familiar with enough of them to know their personality traits.

Salad
What time of day (or night) were you born?I was born at 7:47 pm Central Time.

Main CourseTell us something special about your hometown.I don’t really have a hometown. I’ve moved so many times in my life that I don’t have one place that I call home. To answer this question accurately I would have to tell something about each place I have lived and I’m too lazy to do that.


DessertIf you could receive a letter from anyone in the world, who would you want to get one from?

There are so many possibilities with this question! Does this person have to be alive? Does this person have to be real or can they be fictional? hmmmm... this is difficult. I'm going to cheat and not pick one specific person because it's my feast and I can do what I want. I would love to get a letter from anyone! I love getting mail that is not bills.

Wednesday, December 26

I'll be home for Christmas...

For years every time I heard the song "I'll be Home for Christmas" I would cry. It didn't matter who was singing it, it made me cry. I would cry because I wouldn't be home for Christmas, at least not at my home. My parents were living in Germany and even though I was surrounded by family it still wasn't home. Now that my parents have retired I get to go home for Christmas, it's so nice. Now I don't have to cry every time I hear "I'll be Home for Christmas"- what a relief!

Oh my goodness! Santa was so good to me this year. I am so spoiled!
Here's just a small sample of what was waiting under my tree-
This amazing recipe box- hand made by my father. This thing is solid oak and absolutely stunning. It is an heirloom in the making. If I don't ever manage to have kids I'll have to pass it on to one of the nieces or nephews and pray they appreciate it.


I also got this-

These are pockets that were on my jeans when I was about 3 years old. My Mom found them in a box of stuff she had saved. She framed them and they are so cute! I love sentimental gifts. They are my favorite.

I also got a new sweater, flannel jammies, the London cast recording of Mary Poppins, my flag calendar, Pirates of the Caribbean 3, Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, Pride and Prejudice (the A&E version!) Anne of Green Gables (all three movies), Harry Potter stamps (first day issue!)..... the list goes on and on. I am completely spoiled rotten!

Plus, when I got home today this was sitting on my counter. No one claims to know how it got there. I am overwhelmed!

It's a 22 inch flat screen monitor- WOW!!!! I'm amazed! I wish I could figure out who put it there so I could thank them.

I hope everyone had a wonderful holiday!!!

Sunday, December 23

Cyber Valium

I'm having some stress... it's not a big deal.... just Christmas stress.

Here's how I'm dealing with it-


*sigh* I feel better now. What a gift he has!

Friday, December 21

I'm dreaming....

of a white Christmas! It looks like we're going to get one. Here's a shot from my window last night. We have several more storms lined up over the next couple of days so I think that White Christmas may be ours!


I'm headed to the folks in Southern Utah but I think they have snow there too. Panguitch is a high enough elevation that it gets quite a bit of snow. I'm headed out first thing in the morning and I'm staying until Wednesday. Hopefully the weather will cooperate for traveling.

Feliz Navidad! Fröhliche Weihnachten! Mele Kalikimaka! Merry Christmas!

Wednesday, December 19

Sunset

I've lived a lot of places that have inspiring sunsets. The most obvious being Hawaii- they are famous for them. There are also some pretty spectacular sunsets over the desert in Texas. Riverdale Utah is not often a place you think of when you think of breath taking sunsets. The sunset tonight was one of the most beautiful I've seen in a long time. I had to pull over on my way home today and admire God's artwork tonight. Luckily I had my camera with me and was able to capture it. Enjoy!




Wordless Wednesday


Tuesday, December 18

Two good things... and a what the heck?

These things made me happy today-


What is that bright green thing? It's a mint chocolate chip rice krispie treat. Yummy! They are so good! They sell them at the pharmacy down the hall from my office, which is not a good thing. But they are big enough to be split into 4 pieces so they can be shared or saved for a snack another time.

Look what the UPS man brought me today-

My hard back copy of Twilight!!! Yeah!! I had to order it from Amazon because I could only find it in paperback in the stores around here. Look how wonderful the whole set looks sitting on my shelves-

It doesn't take much to make me happy.

Ok, now for the what the heck?

Apparently Jamie Lynn Spears is pregnant. She's 16 for crying out loud!!!! It's sad to say but I'm actually not all that shocked. It's not like she's ever had a chance at a normal life. I really just feel bad for that baby. How sad.

Monday, December 17

My new couch...

I have lived with hand-me-down furniture pretty much since I moved out of my parents house too many years ago to count. I've had roommates that had nice furniture, but I've never had any myself. My most recent hand-me down looked like this-
Last spring my Mom bought a new chair. It was so cute and I was in love with it. She got it into her house and decided she didn't love it. Instead of returning it she sold it to me. Isn't it beautiful? It's so very comfy too!
The problem arose that I had such a shabby looking couch next to my cute chair. So I went looking for a new couch. I searched and searched but couldn't find just the right one. Mom offered to reupholster her old one if I could find some fabric I liked. This is what we came up with-
Isn't it wonderful??!?!? The finished product arrived at my house yesterday. I'm so excited I can barely stand it. This is what my living room looks like now-
I also had some really old bar stools that I got from the DI when I moved into this apartment. They were yellow and green and looked like they were straight out of the 70's. (I can't find any pictures of them, so I can share with you how terrible they were.) They were hideous but I lived with them for over 2 years because I couldn't find exactly the right thing to replace them. While Mom was reupholstering she did my bar stools too. I'm so happy with them!


My Mother is the most amazing woman!!! She is super talented and very, very generous with her time. I promised to help with both these projects but she did 99% of it. I can never repay her.

Saturday, December 15

Where are you Christmas?

Ok, it's 10 days before Christmas and I'm just not feeling it. I'm doing everything I can think of to get in the Christmas spirit~

I've decked my halls~

I've gone Christmas Caroling~

I've listened to my boys sing Christmas songs for weeks now~



I even saw the Mo Tab Choir sing at the Christmas Devotional~

I finally started my shopping~

What more can I do? I love Christmas and want to feel the magic of it all, but I'm really struggling. I'm so frustrated with it all!

Hmmm.... maybe I need to bake.

Friday, December 14

Friday's Feast


AppetizerMake up a word and give us its definition.

My Mom and I made up a word years ago, it’s actually an acronym, but it has become a word in our everyday conversations. It is Bthoom- it stands for Beats the H#@* out of Me. (I'm a dork, I know)

Soup
What is currently your favorite song?

This is a hard, it changes on a daily basis. Right now I’m in the Christmas music mode so I guess I will have to say God Rest Ye Merry Gentlemen by Barenaked Ladies and Sarah McLachlan. It will be different tomorrow though.

Salad
What’s at the top of your Christmas wish list this year?

Peace on earth? I really don’t know. I’m kind of in a Christmas funk right now so I’m having hard time coming up with something. (I’m trying to get out of the funk though, thus the Christmas music.)
Main CourseName a scent that reminds you of someone special in your life.

My Grandma used to use
Nivea hand cream. I keep a little container of it at all times just so I can smell it and think of her. She died 17 years ago and whenever I take a whiff of Nivea she is sitting next to me.

Dessert
Who is someone on television that you feel probably shouldn’t be, and
why?

This is hard too- there are so many people that shouldn’t be on television for so many different reasons. I could pick someone based on political agendas, morals and values, or sheer stupidity but the one I am going to choose is the guy who plays Horatio Cane (I think his name is David Caruso) on CSI Miami simply because he can not act! He drives me up a wall. I’ve quit watching the show because of him

Thursday, December 13

Funny

I got this in an email today at work- made my day! Enjoy!

Tuesday, December 11

Edward

Well, it's official- Edward has been cast. Robert Pattinson will be playing Edward Cullen in Twilight. I really think he will be able to pull it off. My only concern is moving past the fact that he played Cedric Diggory in Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire. I really hope he and Kristen Stewart have chemistry. If not the whole movie will be ruined.

Picture him with lighter, redder hair and topaz eyes.... not bad at all.

You can read Stephenie's thoughts about Robert on her MySpace Blog. I know she has to be politically correct, so she's not going to be mean, but it does sound encouraging.
I also found this picture at Stephenie's MySpace page-
She says it's her favorite "smirky" picture of Robert. It reminds me of Bella's favorite half smile she's always talking about. The boy has potential.

Out of the mouths of babes

This is Ashlyn-
She is 3 going on 21. She talks a lot. Last night as she and I were decorating my Christmas tree she was chatting non-stop as usual. Here's how the conversation went (I had just asked her Mom to put the star on my tree because I couldn't reach the top.)
Ashlyn: Mommy has to put the star on top of the tree cause she's high.
Me: That's right.
Ashlyn: You can't do it cause you're low like me.
Me- (after regaining control from the fits of laughter) Yes, I'm low like you.
Made my day! She's so adorable!

Sunday, December 9

We interrupt this pity party

I can throw a doozy of a pity party. It doesn't happen very often but occasionally it just happens. I've been a very good hostess for my most recent pity party over the last couple of days. There have been refreshments (lots of chocolate!) and music (the sappy, feel sorry for yourself kind).

Today the party came to a screeching halt as I sat in church. It was during the Sacrament hymn that this little gem hit me. "For Courage to accept Thy Will" Just one simple line, that was all it took.

Enough said- pity party over. Back to living life and realizing that someone else is in charge.

Friday, December 7

Friday's Feast

Appetizer
What was the last game you purchased?
Friends Scene-It… It’s a Christmas gift- shhhh!

Soup
Name something in which you don’t believe.
I don’t believe in judging people before I know them. I try so hard not to because it makes me so angry.

Salad
If you could choose a celebrity to be your boss, who would you pick?
Will Smith- he comes across as a decent, caring, and compassionate human being. Plus he’s funny, hard working, good looking and seems to be approachable.

Main Course
What was a lesson you had to learn the hard way?
I had to learn that even people who love you will hurt you sometimes. I’ve also learned that I have to forgive them even if they don’t ask for or really even deserve forgiveness.

Dessert
Describe your idea of the perfect relaxation room.
A comfy couch with lots of pillows, a fireplace, soft blankets, a nice tv and dvd player, a stereo and computer.

Thursday, December 6

Getting to know you (Christmas Edition)

I got this email today and thought I would post my answers here too. Tis the season!

1. Wrapping paper or gift bags? I prefer to wrap them, but if I'm being lazy a gift bag will do in a pinch.

2. Real or Artificial tree? I'm almost ashamed to admit this but I do have a fake tree. It's so much easier!

3. When do you put up the tree? It's still not up yet- I'm such a slacker! Hopefully in the next day or two it will be up. But my other decorations are up- I am making progress!

4. When do you take the tree down? Shortly after New Year's Day

5. Do you like eggnog? Occasionally


6. Favorite gift you received as a child? I can't remember

7. Do you have a nativity scene? I actually have 3 of them- A Willow Tree set, A Hawaiian one (it's in a coconut, I love it!) and a German pyramid.

8. Hardest person to buy for ? My Mom

9. Easiest person to buy for? My Dad

10. Worst Christmas gift ever received? Hmmmm... I can't remember

11. Christmas Cards....email or snail mail? Snail mail if I actually sent Christmas cards which I usually don't.

12. Favorite Christmas Movie? It's a Wonderful Life or Miracle on 34th Street

13. When do you start shopping for Christmas? I haven't started yet but I do have a mental list in my head of what I will be getting.

14. Have you ever 'recycled' a Christmas present? Yes!

15. Favorite thing to eat at Christmas? There are too many to list

16. Clear lights or colored or both on the tree? Clear/White

17. Favorite Christmas song? Believe (Polar Express Soundtrack), Breath of Heaven and Still, Still, Still are at the top of the list this year. The list is subject to change depending on my mood though.

18. Travel at Christmas or stay home? I will be traveling to Panguitch which is home, so it's kind of both.

19. Can you name Santa's Reindeer? I think so

20. Do you have an Angel or a Star on top of your tree? A Star

21. Open the presents Christmas Eve or Christmas Morning? Christmas Morning

22. Most annoying thing about this time of the year? The pressure of the perfect gift!

23. Shopping...Mall or on-line or both? Both

24. Do you decorate outside for Christmas or just inside (or at all?) Just inside

25. Favorite Christmas cookie? I very rarely meet a cookie I don't like :-)

26. Do you own Christmassy clothing or jewelry? Christmas socks

27. Do you believe in Santa Claus? I believe!

Tuesday, December 4

The Perks

I have issues with living in Utah. My issues are complicated, somewhat irrational and way too detailed for this post. This post is for me to be grateful for the perks of living in Utah. I was reminded of them several times this weekend.

Perk #1-
I didn't grow up living in Utah so I never got to see the lights on Temple Square. Since I moved here I've tried to go every year. I love to wander through hushed grounds and just feel the magic of the Spirit that exists there. We were down at the Conference Center Theater Friday night and took the time to enjoy the lights while we were there.
(I realize this is not the best picture- but it was the best of the bunch!)
Perk #2-
This goes hand in hand with being able to visit Temple Square- it is so nice to be able to attend events at the Conference Center. Friday night we went to see Savior of the World which is a musical about the birth and resurrection of the Savior. I was kind of skeptical at first but I was pleasantly surprised. I should know better than to doubt any production put on by the Church. They just don't do things that aren't well produced.
We also had the opportunity to attend the First Presidency Christmas Devotional on Sunday night. My parents had never been to an event at the Conference Center so it was fun to take them. My father was amazed that a room full of 21,000 people came to a hush when President Hinckley walked into the room. You could of heard a pin drop! The Mormon Tabernacle Choir and the Orchestra performed and all three members of the First Presidency spoke. It was a beautiful evening.

Perk #3-
Waking up to this-
We had a skiff of snow on Wednesday (see Wordless Wednesday post) but Saturday it really snowed. Yeah!!! I love watching it snow. I love the way it looks on the mountains. I love playing in the snow.
Perk #4-
Good Food! This was a weekend full of yummy-ness. Friday night at PF Changs, Lunch Saturday at Sweetly Divine in Logan, Dinner Saturday at The Firehouse in Logan and my Mom's to die for beef brisket last night. What a weekend! Now it's off to the gym!
Perk #5-
The biggest perk of living in Utah is the fact that my family is close by. I have such a wonderful extended family that is a great support system. If I didn't live in Utah I wouldn't have had this moment last night.

I truly am blessed and need to remind myself of it more often!

Sunday, December 2

Off the wagon...



Dang it! I have no will power. I can't resist it's siren song.