Wednesday, October 31, 2007

I am Deep Pink...Who Knew

My friend Katie had this on her blog so I thought I'd check it out too. This says a lot and most of it is true, which isn't surprising since I'm the one who fed it the answers. Check it out!

you are deeppink

Your dominant hues are red and magenta. You love doing your own thing and going on your own adventures, but there are close friends you know you just can't leave behind. You can influence others on days when you're patient, but most times you just want to go out, have fun, and do your own thing.

Your saturation level is high - you get into life and have a strong personality. Everyone you meet will either love you or hate you - either way, your goal is to get them to change the world with you. You are very hard working and don't have much patience for people without your initiative.

Your outlook on life is very bright. You are sunny and optimistic about life and others find it very encouraging, but remember to tone it down if you sense irritation.
the html color quiz

HP Photo Book Contest

There's a contest going on where you can win an HP Photo Book. I have actually never done a photo book but I have friends who have and they are really awesome - like your very own professional photo album.

This is her description: HP Photo Books are a fun, easy way to create customized, professional quality photo books at home with an inkjet printer. They come in two sizes, 5"x7" and 8.5"x11", in multiple colors. They are professional looking two-toned linen books which come with 12 sheets of HP Photo Paper and software. You just bend the binding back to replace or rearrange pages and add mementos as you like.

This is my official entry into the contest since you have to blog about Photo Books with a specific theme, and then provide a specific link to the contest itself which is

"Angela at mommy bytes is giving away six HP Photo Books"
See her website for specific rules since there are a few more technicalities. She's giving away 6 books, and the contest ends at midnight on November 15th.

I have lots of theme ideas but I think the first one I'd do would be the best pictures I have of the SP. It would be nice to have them all in one place; something I can give her when she's older (or who knows, just keep for myself). Well I have a load of those pics so that's what I'd do with them other than scrapbook them which I already have done.

Tuesday, October 30, 2007

I Was Mistaken

about there being a men's compliment to the Rockin' Girl Blog Award. There is not! This is terrible news! I'm sorry! Not that anyone really knew who I was going to award it to anyway, but it makes me sad. I am now going on a quest to find a nice award that I can give to those blogs I was intending on awarding tonight. Perhaps I'll just have to create my own...which I think is a fabulous idea!

Monday, October 29, 2007

Newest Award

What blogger doesn't appreciate an award! They are like little unexpected christmas presents! I received this award:

from Josey at Stayin Silly, Livin Lucky last Monday! (oh my gosh - I just realized it took me a week to re-post this award!) Sorry Josey; I've just been so busy! Josey is a girl after my own heart in my ways than one.

I believe that the real reason it took me so long to post this award was that I was trying to figure out who I wanted to pass it along to. I've grown bored with several of the blogs I was regularly reading for a time and deleted them from my GoogleReader. That just leaves me with my all-time favorites, most of whom have already received this award, or an award from me, or couldn't care less if I gave them an award or not anyway. In any case I finally decided to pass it along to the following:

Mad Goat Lady always has the funniest posts, like Ok lets face it..I AM middle aged and hairy. And this post The great washing-up debacle. reminded me so much of my own post I'm That Lady that it cracked me up! Anyway, much deserved!

Tish from The Kat House has been one of my favorite destinations for quite a while. No doubt she's already received this award because from what I've seen, she's earned about a zillion already (actually I just checked and YES, she has received this one before but that doesn't mean she can't get it again, does it?) You just never know what you're going to find on her blog!

Lastly, I just discovered Dariana from Charmed & Dangerous. I got reading one of two posts and before I knew it, I'd read nearly 10 of them! It's like a book you can't put down! But my favorite was her past weekend's exploits: Weekend Warriors huh.lar.ious!

Thanks, ladies, for filling the blogging universe with fodder for another entertaining blogsurf!

BTW, tomorrow I'm going to take advantage of the fact that once you've received the Rockin' Girl Blogger award, you are allowed to pass along the Rockin' Guy Blogger award too - at least that's what Josey said in her post. So, I'm going to do it. I already know who's getting that one.

Sunday, October 28, 2007

Today's Download

So we just got back from a short weekend at my in-law's. Yee-haw. It was cattle-herding time and it looked pretty fun (DH's dad owns a small cattle ranch). We, of course, don't own a horse yet but if we did, DH and I would have fought over who got to help herd the cattle down the canyon with the rest of the family and I think DH would have won since he's actually done it before. Two of my sisters-in-law helped out and I wished I'd been along for the ride.

It was an interesting weekend on many fronts. In-laws, I don't care what you say, are a breed unto themselves. And DH can say that with as much emphasis about my family. We got family on both ends this weekend; mine on Friday, his yesterday and today and I'll tell you what: I'm glad to be back home with just mine to deal with. It's nice...just the three of us with our simple dynamics and nice familiar problems that only involve our simple-little selves. However, it's one of the rare weekends when after, I can say, "I am SO SO SO glad I went." 'Nuff said there.

On the other "family front", I haven't been close to my dad in a very long time and actually don't see him more than once every couple of years. He's a funny and quirky man who makes it difficult to not only get close to, but to love. But while he was here we talked about a lot of stuff. I don't have brothers or any other man in my life besides DH to get the male perspective about stuff. When I am arguing with DH about something, I literally just think he's insane and illogical and flounce off with my superior wisdom. Not that my dad and I were discussing my marriage, because frankly, his and my relationship (dad and I) hasn't earned the right to broach that subject, but his take on life is absolutely male. He was able to shed some light on some topics from a male view that definitely helped me understand where a man might come up with some of the ridiculous ideas they get. And it was refreshing actually. Since I've not spent much time with my dad since I've been an adult, and don't have other men to talk with besides DH, I feel I've been at a disadvantage. It might be nice to have another man to throw ideas at just to see what happens to them before I launch them on DH. I've gotta think about that. It opens up some real vulnerable places in me that I'm not sure want to be opened.

This week's posts might be more related to some of the many activities the Supreme Princess and I have been up to. I feel like my life is in whirlwind mode and I might as well document some of that fun - DH says he's been reading my blog and if he knows where some of these cute pics are of his baby, he might pull them up to brag them to his friends and co-workers. Just a thought, hon.

Saturday, October 27, 2007

End of the Day

I'm usually a daily blogger but these past couple of days I've slacked a little because I've been so busy in my "real" life. Don't ask what I've been doing because it's really boring stuff but my dad came for a visit this morning and then I had a family get-together tonight that lasted until just a few minutes ago. So, while I'd love to be whitty and post a fabulous blog describing the highlights, I can't. My brain's fried and a migraine has hit me in the past ten minutes. I'm in need of a dark room and some sleep. We're heading to DH's hometown in the morning for the weekend for a short visit (my dad headed to my older sister's house) so I'll probably post tomorrow from there. I hope my migraine's gone by then.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007


I don't exactly have a hard time relaxing. I never have. And I'm definately not an insomniac. Ask my older sister whose primary memory of me as a teenager is of me...asleep...anywhere. She has recollections of me sleeping on the floor of a hardware store as my dad shopped. But in all fairness, what female teenager wouldn't fall asleep at a hardware store? Give me a Nordstrom any day and I'm wide awake! That was then though. Now, my 2nd home is Home Depot but that's another story altogether.

I really like falling asleep while listening to a book and have completed a million that way. But last night I was more in the mood for music, but not just anything. I wanted something soothing and relaxing. I paged through the thousands of songs I have on my iPod but could only find one album that qualified and as I lay there listening, it was NOT relaxing. It had this familiar melody that my mind kept wanting to sing to which prevented it from meandering off into never-never land instead.

My mother, who not only is an accomplished plastic canvaser, is also a massage therapist among a zillion other things. She gave me a CD called Relax with Thundering Rainstorm (by Creative Music Marketing Ltd. in 1996 catalog no. CMM601-2 just in case anyone is interested). This is the most amazing CD! I have listened to many so-called relaxing rainstorms but there's always this obnoxious melody along with it, and I just don't think it is relaxing. I prefer to hear just the rain beating against the roof, and a clap of thunder, as if it's right outside my window. Nothing is more relaxing, I think. Knowing that I'm snuggled in my warm covers while Mother Nature pours buckets on the's a safe and comforting feeling.

Another wonderful CD is the one I play for the SP every night to calm her is a dual CD collection called Baby's First: Playtime and Sleeptime, and it comes with one CD that is Birthday songs, and the other one is called Sleepytime. It's published by St. Clair Entertainment. This one is mainly instrumental pieces but they're sort of new-agey and really soothing. I know this because the times I am forced to lay with her, I nearly drift off myself (something I do not like to do in her bed: my personal opinion of a bad habit).

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Haunted House

My mother has many talents and one of them is the under-valued art of plastic canvas. The woman has many zillions of projects in her life, one of them was to create every last piece of furniture needed to equip a Barbie house. Most plastic canvas projects come with patterns to make the various pieces, but she doesn't need no patterns! Heck no! She created the patterns of all of this Barbie furniture - and anyone who has done plastic canvas knows that that's not an easy task!

Plastic canvas, if you've never heard of it starts with a bit sheet of plastic with little tiny holes in it, a needle and a skane of yarn. You put the yarn on the needle and them put the needle in the holes, sort of like counted cross stitch but on a plastic grid, creating a pattern as you go.

So I was at my mom's the other day and of course, she had her Halloween decorations all over the house. But the one that caught my interest was the haunted house she had on her dining room table. And I wanted it! But alas, she would not give it to me, nor make me one and I was forced to slink away with the pattern back to my house where I've spent the past week cutting out all the pieces, collecting yarn and fortifying my patience for the long task ahead.

DH aptly expressed it when he said, "you're never going to have that thing finished by Halloween!" That's probably true! But it will be done by next Halloween, for sure! Here's a picture of hers.

Monday, October 22, 2007

Get Me Out of Here

Maybe I'm hormonal or maybe it's just a bad day. That's the worst thing about being female; you're never really sure which it is. And regardless of whatever is making you feel so rotten toward all things living, and even some inatimate objects - it doesn't matter. The feelings are true and valid, and so poignant. I feel today, like I want to clothe myself in something warm, loose and frumpy, put a pair of sunglasses on - grab a high limit, no balance credit card and a diet Pepsi and take the first one-way flight out of here. I wouldn't care if it took me to Kansas City.

But, since I have a family, a mortgage and student loans, I'll do all of the above except instead of grabbing the credit card, I'll grab a dollar and go buy a Diet Pepsi and escape in whatever book I pick up first. Hopefully it can take me somewhere better than Kansas City...

Sunday, October 21, 2007

Natural Enemies

by Warran Adler.

I've decided to highlight books I've recently finished reading so that perhaps I can remember what books I've read, and maybe someone might be interested in a book I've read also, since I know lots of people are looking for recommendations - not just me.

I finished reading Natural Enemies on Thursday night. It's the first book I've read in a really long time that has kept me up late, not wanting to put the book down.

Not that the book wasn't predictable in it's final outcome, but the way they brought it down was pretty suspenseful!

It's about this very urbanized couple who accidentally get stranded without hardly any supplies in the middle of the Rocky Mountains. They are there for at least a week doing whatever they can to survive. And while everything that can happen to them, does indeed happen, the author portrays it in a way that makes it believable, right down to the way they handle each crisis.

I like these suspenseful type books. But so many these days start out so much the same, and I'm bored even reading the jacket. So it takes an act of God for me to actually be interested in a book in the first place. I've gotten so choosy! But this one did pique my interest, and even held it which for me, is enough to deserve some accolades.

Just to mention, the author who wrote this book also wrote The War of the Roses, which was later turned into a movie. I did read that Natural Enemies was also considered for a movie, and I think it would have been a great one.

Saturday, October 20, 2007

Stolen Items from Adolf Hitler Found in Utah Antique Ship

SALT LAKE CITY, UT -- Salt Lake City police say they've recovered several stolen artifacts believed to have once belonged to Adolf Hitler. And now they're looking for more.The recovered items were taken in a burglary. Investigators are still trying to verify if they're real, but they believe they once belonged to Adolf Hitler and came from his home in the German Alps. If authentic, these items are a piece of history. "In my almost two decades here, I haven't seen anything like this, ever," Salt Lake County Sheriff's Detective Scott VanWagoner said. "As you can see from the items' unique nature and their handcrafted artwork, that there is nothing like them anywhere." All three documents are addressed to Hitler and dated 1933, the year he became chancellor of Germany. "They're priceless. They're unique. They're one-of-a-kinds. They're handcrafted," VanWagoner said. One of the items, a colorful book, is believed to tell the history of Henry the Lion; and another item, a scroll inside a cylinder, is a document ceding land to Nazi Germany. Investigators say a Salt Lake County man had them in a storage shed that was burglarized two years ago. They reportedly belonged to his father, a World War II veteran who served under Patton. "When his father was deceased, they came across these items in his father's collection. They didn't know they existed until his father died," VanWagoner explained. Yesterday police got information that someone left the items with a local antiquities dealer in hopes of selling them. "The items are so unique in nature and such a one-of-a-kind, there's no doubt these came from that burglary," VanWagoner said. The items still missing include a damaged bust of Hitler and a vase. Tracking down the thieves can be tricky. Investigators believe these items have exchanged hands at least three times. They're also trying to verify the rightful owners. Until then the artifacts will remain in a climate-controlled room in the Salt Lake County Sheriff's Office. Investigators say the person who was renting the storage unit documented ownership of the items in 2002. They are trying to verify that and figure out the items were brought into the country legally.

Go figure!

story copied from

Friday, October 19, 2007

The Rooster House at Gardner Village

When someone produces an honest act of kindness without thought for personal gain, and indeed is actually sacrificing something to help another, especially a stranger, it makes me stop and take inventory of my own values. I hope to think I'd do the same given the opportunity and all I can do is be prepared to help when I can. I was on the receiving end the other night and want to share this woman's kindness...

My friend, Katie, gave me the idea to go to Gardner Village's witch event where you can go on a carriage ride with a witch, then take in all the witches that are set up all over. The Supreme Princess and I got there just in time to get a good place in line, and then we found out they only take cash. I'm not really a cash girl. I have checks and lots of credit cards but hardly ever have cash.

Back up...I was at Gardner Village about a month ago and I was walking through The Village Christmas Shoppe and I handed the SP a few toys to look at while I browsed. True to form, I walked out of the store with them. I'd been intending to take them back several times and only got around to it on Monday when we were there.

So needing cash, I walked over to The Village Christmas Shoppe thinking that they might be able to help me (with a cash-over transanction), especially considering I was being that honest girl. No dice. They graciously accepted the items back, said thanks for being honest and turned me on my way. Not cool.

The next place I headed was the ATM at the main store. Evidently, I wasn't the only person with that idea because it was out-of-service, probably from too many transactions. Shoot!

Well, I had no other options so I tucked the Witch Ride out of my head and decided to go see the witches instead. I'd deal with the SP's disappointment later. I headed over to one of my favorite stores, The Rooster House, and headed in. I thought it looked a little promising so I explained my sob story to the lady at the front desk.

She said she doesn't ever do cash-over transactions them and wasn't even sure she could do a cash over transaction because it messes up the till but she'd see what she could do. I'd been wanting a candle in there anyway; they have the cutest ones there. So finally, after some figuring, she told me she could do it. I bought a green apple candle for $17.50 (everything's 20% off there right now until Halloween because they're going out of business after 7 years), and she gave me a $20.

Let me say again, she had every reason to turn me away. It was really inconvenient for her, and she had not a thing to gain. She didn't know me from the next customer and she could have treated me like that too.

I just want to say a big thanks to that lady and spread the word about a stranger's uncommon kindness. She made the SP's day. The Witch Ride was very fun!

Thursday, October 18, 2007

The Barn Host

A few years ago, I discovered this little barn while out driving in Clearfield, Utah, a little town about 30 miles north of Salt Lake City and out west by the Lake.

The first time I saw this barn, it was fall just like now and the leaves were beginning to change and I thought that the trees were actually growing inside of the barn. I drive by this barn frequently and when the leaves had all fallen off, I found that the trees are planted just outside but the barn gives the illusion of being a host!

I love this barn. It just makes me happy to look at it.

Wednesday, October 17, 2007

Rain and Ice Cream?

It's been storming here in Utah - rain last night, all night long and most of the day today so far. The rain turned to sleet this morning so it sort of looks like snow but it's not really. The thunder and lightening woke me up at 3 AM this morning and I longed to open the window and hear it beat on the roof but it was really chilly...never mind.

I'd been working all day yesterday and on those days, I feel especially guilty for leaving my daughter at a sitter (it's that maternal conflict) so when she suggested we go get ice cream, I thought nothing of the weather. "Of course! That sounds like a great idea".

We had to get bundled up like eskimos to even go outside, it was that cold and took off for the local Cold Stone Creamery (you been there? no? you are SOOO missing out). I thought we'd be the only ones there, but we weren't! Another family, and a cute little high school couple.

The Supreme Princess (as my little girl is now known as), is still at the age where color rules in ice cream selection. She got the "blue" ice cream since that's her fav color. It turned out to be "Cotton Candy" which she hates (who's kid is this anyway?). My fav ice cream is Strawberry.

Cold Stone makes these concoctions that are so amazing! And just so you know, I do not do that "Pay per Post" thing so this is NOT an advertisement. Just a personal endorsement. My fav concoction there is Our Strawberry Blonde, which is absolutely to die for! They use this "sweet cream ice cream" as their basis and it is heavenly! And, since the blue ice cream turned out to be not such a favorite flavor, I shared mine with the SP and because I'm a mother, I was okay with sharing my coveted ice cream with my favorite friend.

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

What To Do With Your Teenagers

My trips to junior high schools have prompted a few postings and here is yet another one.

I've always been very trusting, wanting a close confidant who I can share secrets with. I've only really noticed this about myself since I've been an adult but I can imagine I've always been like that though. I recall as a teenager I didn't necessarily have a best friend who followed me throughout high school but I had several who spanned a year or two. As an adult, it's been easier for me to make and keep friends, although I am far less trusting now than I ever was before.

I talk about this trust thing because looking back, it makes me wonder about some of my behaviors relative to my parents.

When I was about 15 or 16, on a normal, hot, summer night I was partying with a group of friends. My girlfriend's mother was never home and we were planning a party that night. We got all the booze we could drink, invited everybody we knew to the smallest apartment known to man, and settled in for a night of fun.

I did not ask permission. I did not inform my parents where I was nor that I would not be coming home that night.

Following the worst night of my life where I received some lifelong scars that have only recently begun to heal, I called home because I needed to be there in my relative sanctuary. My dad was understandably upset and refused to come get me. I was 7 miles from home. We were not old enough to drive so I didn't have a ride, nor did I have any money. Additionally, for reasons I have forgotten years ago, I did not have any shoes with me. My father told me to walk.

I did.

I got propositioned 3 times on my way home by dirty men in their 40's who saw an easy target.

When I finally arrived home after about 2 1/2 hours of walking, I set foot through the door to see my dad sitting on the couch watching TV. He did not address me; I went to my room.

I was a tough teenager under equally difficult circumstances which don't need to be laid out here for the world to analyze. My behaviors were not entirely my fault at that age; a fact that I have wallowed in and then finally moved past.

I told my parents a few weeks later what happened on that night. I can't recall their reactions which means they weren't significant. It was never mentioned again. I was left to stumble through the remains of my miserable existence on my own. It was a year before I was myself again. After that, I never ditched school again, never drank (was the designated driver at all parties) and only lived outside the "house rules" when I found comfort in the arms of a boyfriend or several. Much of my high school years are shameful for me and I try to forget, telling myself I'm a different person now, which I am.

It feels good to get this out into the universe to people who don't really know me (and a few who really do). This stuff doesn't define me at all and that's an important factor in my now healthy psyche.

Where I'm going with all this teenage reminiscing is that (and here mom, because I know you're out there reading this and feeling all sorts of blame - just know I'm healthy now and that you were a good mom; we all have our flaws) I can't be that fundamentally different from that girl that used to seek solace in various places. I wanted someone to talk to - that's what I'm trying to say. I'm sure that I would have been so grateful to have someone to tell the little things to, and then once they were received well, to tell all the other crap to also. I don't really remember being "talked to" on a regular basis, just for my opinions, my wants, needs, desires, stuff I'm doing, where I wanted to go, etc.

I remember sitting on the counter in our kitchen as my mom prepared dinner...this is a big memory so I must have done it a lot. That was me seeking out someone to talk to (wanting to trust someone) - she wasn't in my room. And when I say that, there's no blame, don't misunderstand. I'm just saying that I definately wanted someone enough to seek them out.

My final point in putting all this out there is that there's a lesson for me to be learned. My daughter was given to me, I'm convinced, to help me close the circle. I want to be there for her in those rough years. Really be there! Right with her (probably in the way that SelectHealth says they're with me everyday lol). I want her to know that even if she feels alone during her day at school, she won't be alone when she gets home and that I will listen.

I guess I sort of wasn't telling entirely the whole truth the other day when I wrote that I don't recall what it was like to be a teenager. I remember the pain.

Monday, October 15, 2007

Body Image

If you're fat; you want to be thin, if you're thin; you hate your nose, if you love your foot size; you might hate the color of your hair. We're all in the same boat. Even those we covet hate something about themselves but we're not their best friend so we don't know what that "thing" is.

In talking to a good friend this morning(nameless to protect from her from embarrassment), who happens probably be a size 0, she was commenting about how crappy she ate this past weekend. My inner eyes were rolling as she spoke of cakes and brownies and other things she partook of. Finally, I asked, "alright, I just have to know why someone your size is feeling guilty about what you ate?"

At this point in my life, I wouldn't say I'm overweight terribly. I've got about 15 lbs. of extra baggage and I think I'm about average. I don't feel particularly awesome about how I look but I also don't live, eat & sleep my body image. Prior to having my daughter several years ago, I was at a great size for my height. I had lost some weight and had maintained it long enough to feel used to it. After about 8 months of being in that body, I found my focus starting to shift from body image to healthy lifestyle. I gave up coffee, soda, fast food, and most every other crappy ingestible thing (including smoking). I loved the feeling of caring more about my health than what my body looked like.

So my friend answered me, "...if I continue to eat like that all the time, i would never stay this size, not to mention it makes me feel awful!"

I have spent way too much of my lifetime worrying about my body size. It's unfair that we are teased with perfect bodies in our teenaged years (when we have no concept of how to truly appreciate them), and then they are yanked away from us after such a short association. We spend the rest of our lives remembering what it felt like to have lean thighs, flat tummies, skinny little waists. Our thoughts, "if only i could lose 10 lbs, i'd be happy..." How sad.

I'd like to make that shift again from body image to healthy body and lose the need to get back to pre-baby size. I'd probably be a lot more at peace.

Sunday, October 14, 2007

Yesterday Revisited

Thank you to those of you who posted a comment to my negativity yesterday. I re-read it today; if I was a guy I'd have thought I was hormonal.

I deleted it.

I have a new policy.

In order to use my blog for what it was originally intended for, and that was a repository for my random thoughts, I will continue to post negativity...but I will delete it the next day. It will essentially accomplish what I wanted, and that was to get it down and out. A few people will read it, but not too many because any future visitors won't see it.

I think that when, for example, singers record a song that has really offensive language or vulguar ideas, it's one thing to sing that stuff one time. But then they record it, and sell it to millions of people. Millions of people play that offensive stuff each, at least 1x so that's millions of occurrances of filth. Then, they listen to it again, and again and each time, it's as if the artist re-committed themselves to the low depths from which the filth came. They get the royalties each time a CD or song is purchased, but in the same sense, they get those same "royalties" everytime their voice repeats the crap that came out originally. Am I being clear?

That's why I won't leave my negativity up forever. I chose to contaminate the world on a small scale but I won't leave it up for the countless encounters that I will no doubt get my own royalties from.

Friday, October 12, 2007

Laptop Specifications

3 1/2 years ago, I bought this Compaq desktop I'm currently using and to be honest, I have been really pleased with it. Aside from it's tremedous hard drive and fast processor, what I really love about it is that it has a bunch of ports on the front including several USB, one that takes the adapter from my camcorder, and a few for memory cards, like the Sandisk I use in my camera and PDA.

But, I am stuck...literally in my office. I can't take it anywhere with me and I am feeling more and more chained down to this desk! And I'm coming to hate it!

So I've decided that hopefully before Christmas I will buy myself a laptop. I don't intend to just pop into Costco and buy whatever they have. I'm going to be discriminating. The problem is I don't know what to be discriminating about.

I could have bought a laptop when I bought this desktop but at the time, I was concerned about stability mainly, flexibility and durability. Those concerns are gone now as I have seen laptops evolve a lot and know now that they can be even better than a desktop, especially for what I do with them.

I am going to enlist this audience I've accumulated to help me, if I may. I'm sure that some of my readers will have suggestions to give so me figure out what I need please!

This is what I do on my computer:

  1. store and photoshop lots of pictures
  2. store lots of video and make lots of movies
  3. store my iTunes database (big) and lots of audiobooks
  4. blogging of course, email & internet misc.
  5. a little gaming
  6. scan old pictures & documents
  7. use Outlook (email & calendar), Office, Excel, Powerpoint lots

I'm pretty sure I can't move over to a Mac because I'm an old tricks - you know.

I do know I'd like anywhere from 150 - 200 G harddrive, but what about a processor? How fast? Do laptops come with those cool ports or do I need adaptors? How do I connect to my printers, PDA, scanner etc? Do they come anymore with floppy drives? We have wireless through my desktop - how will that work when I convert?

I have literally no knowledge when it comes to computer specs. Pretend I am a practical newbie and I have hired you to buy me a laptop to suit my needs. What would you buy me and why?

Thursday, October 11, 2007

My Cooking

Anyone who knows me, knows that I hate cooking. And lately, a few things have happened that lead me to believe that I actually sort of suck at it anyway. I think most of the things that I put on the table are only semi-palatable. I’m a fairly non-picky eater so I don’t even think I notice whether it’s good or not – it doesn’t gag me, I’ll eat it.

I do like to bake though. However, I don’t believe that really much that I even bake is “divine”. I make a loaf of bread…it’s good. I make a pie…it’s alright. It’s never “wow!” I’m alright with that.

Even when I think I am making something that’s really good, I’m not sure. By my standards it is, but I really don’t get the impression it’s all that super!

So lately I’ve been feeling bad because I’ve been so busy (or disorganized) that I’ve really been putting sub-standard meals on the table. I mean, not even good by my standards..not to mention not-aesthetically-pleasing. So I decided to whip up a batch of tamales.

I LOVE to make tamales. I think it’s because it’s quite an intense process, and it gives me such a big sense of achievement once they’re done. Again, I think they taste great! And since mine is the only raving review I've ever received, I’m starting to have seriously low self-esteem about my cooking. I have had raving reviews about my lasagna but hey, that’s just 1 meal in how many?

So anyway about these tamales. I learned to make them about a year ago and it’s like an art project! It takes creativity, and a little precision, and patience to make them perfectly. And when they’re all done…they are so yummy…to me.

So if anyone ever is looking for a seriously fabulous lasagna recipe, I’ve got one. If anyone ever wants an average tamale recipe (but I think is fabulous), I’ve got one. Otherwise, just remember that I’m pretty sure that my cooking stinks and that most of my recipes probably do too.

***Re-reading this post makes it sound like I’m feeling sorry for myself and I’m looking for pats on my back. No, that’s not my style. I’m just finally putting down on paper, as in a catharsis, what I’ve known for some time. And I’m good at other things thankfully.


Wednesday, October 10, 2007

4 Year Old Girl Falls into Grand Canyon

Yesterday, a four year old girl fell off the edge of a cliff in the Grand Canyon and fell 450' to her death. Her father, ran down to where she had fallen, injuring his ankle in the process and gave her CPR when he reached her. When LifeFlight arrived, she was pronounced dead.

My heart goes out to this family and I can't imagine what they are going through now. That poor little girl. Her poor family who obviously watched her fall...that really long fall. I'm trying not to think about the actual fall.

Evidently that's the 2nd person to die there this year. I just can't believe it was someone so young and am trying to get it out of my head...I mean, anyone with kids can probably identify with the trauma this invokes in my mind.

My prayers are with this family.

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

Blue Sloth's Question

It intrigued me. Blue Sloth posted a question a few days ago that I can't stop thinking about. Is it ethical or even legal (by blogger's standards) to re-post someone else's post? I don't know but will take comments on that too if you're inclined.

His question was this:

"If you were the last person left on the planet, what would you do? You woke up one day a year ago and everyone had disappeared. All infrastructure was still intact, there was plenty of food, water, transportation. The cities were all still there. Just no people. You have given up trying to find some trace of humanity.

So all your material needs are easily taken care of. You can live wherever you like, and you have no responsibilities to anyone other than yourself. How would you choose to spend your days, free of all restrictions?

What would you do with your life?"

I thought a lot about this. I decided that travel would mostly be out of the question unless you drove everywhere you wanted to go. But most of the places I'm dying to go are overseas and I don't know how to sail or operate a ship so that's out. I might drive lots of places. I thought that most of the activities I engage in right now are for the purpose of someone else which leaves me not much else. I could read lots and that would be fun for a while. But I think it would be way more fun if everyone came back after awhile. If they didn't, then there'd be no point to living after a time! It would be lonely and nothing would even matter. I believe that most of what we do, we are intended to share it with someone else whether it be a spouse, friend, sibling, son/daugher or whatever. Without someone to share life with, then it's pointness, insignificant, and devoid of all color, flavor and overall fun.

So if everyone suddenly disappeared and never came back, I'd eat Doritos until I exploded...literally...on purpose.

If everyone suddenly disappeared and was scheduled to come back at a scheduled date, I'd live it up! Go wherever I want, whenever I movies, read, drive all over the place, and generally be a hedonist until the return of my family, when I have to be responsible and disciplined again.

Monday, October 8, 2007

Might as Well Been the Sahara Desert

I was at the Gateway this afternoon to take Nat to the Kids' Discovery Museum. We had some lunch, did a little shopping, grabbed our validation and headed back to one of the underground parking structures.

Let me back up a little bit. I've never parked in this particular structure and was indeed quite delightfully pleased with myself that I managed to park in the exact structure that puts you right on the elevator into the Kids' Museum. I even parked only a few pillars down from the entrance so I was thinking I was really something else! That is, until it came time to find my Tahoe.

I've got my stroller, my kid, my bags and all the rest of my crap and I come out of the elevator. I head right to where I think it is...and it's not there. I walk through a few Tahoe. I walk a few more aisles then wonder where in the heck I am. I decide maybe I'm on the wrong level. I find my way back to the blasted elevator and went up a level. I come out, quite confidant again. My poor daugher-who-already-has-an-anxiety-disorder is starting to freak out because we can't find the Tahoe. I go down to where I'm sure I parked that stupid truck and it's not there. I'm starting to wonder if someone stole it.

I push the panic button on my fob, and I can almost hear my Tahoe, "pleeeeeeeze, help me....i'm right heeeeeeeeere! hep me , hep me!"

I wonder why I don't have a panic button because maybe if I could push that, somebody would come help me! I don't hear the Tahoe! I walk a few more Tahoe.

"If I get lost in here, what am I going to do? I have no idea what the layout of this stupid garage is; I could be in here for hours pushing this stroller with my stupid Gymboree bag." I wondered what I would do if I never found it. Who does one call in such situations? The Lost Vehicle Police? Hmmm.

I pushed panic again and I hear the soft bleating of my Tahoe. I'd be bleating like a sick lamb if somebody would just push my panic button. I follow the slowly-getting-louder sound. I stop the panic just as I come around the corner so it's not obvious I'm a complete brain-dead idiot that did not pick up one of those cute little cards as you go into the mall that identifies what frickin' PARKING LEVEL YOU'RE ON! But nooooooo, Amy's much too smart for that!

It felt like I was down there for 45 minutes but it probably was only like 10.

Saturday, October 6, 2007

The "Random 7 Things" Tag

I was tagged yesterday by Steve of Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu (thanks for the linkaroo, Steve) with the Random 7 Things meme. You are to list 7 things about yourself that are more than likely unknown by most of your readers; and then tag 3 others with the same meme.

It's really hard to think of things about yourself that you don't consider boring or irrelevant. So at the risk of being boring and irrelevant, here goes:

1) I was 16 years old when I first realized I wanted to work in rehabilitation therapy. I was 30 years old when I finally graduated with a degree that enabled me to do so. I was grateful to never be one of those students who could never state their major. My course was always direct.

2) I recently started to collect giraffes (not the real ones, of course). Something about them appeals to me. I also have a fascination with fairies: they're just so dainty and fragile. I love them.

3) I once dated a guy who was convinced he'd be the first man on Mars.

4) I've been strangely attracted to Stephen King's novels and although they sometimes make me feel sort of icky inside, I've read nearly every single one of them. I'm sure before I finally tip over, I'll have read them all.

5) I have absolutely no clue how to change the tire on a car. Thank goodness for OnStar.

6) I have finally forgotten what it was like to be a teenager, and am okay with that.

7) I was 26 when my [now] DH educated me about the jetstream. Until then, I had no idea there were patterns to weather. Silly little girl.

Now for passing it along: I think I'll tag "FriendInMe" at My Pointless, Rachel at Simply Living, and Andrew from Everybody Loves Coupons. Have fun!

Lists, Lists, Lists

Before I mom passed me a link to some cute & free holiday labels for envelopes & gifts. Check it out!

Now...I am the Queen of all Listmakers!. If you need a list of tasks to accomplish any goal, I've got it, and will gladly share it.

Creating the list is half the fun...and then I lose interest mostly and forget to check off the tasks. Well, as the holidays grow nearer, I've got a new list I need to create to ensure that they inflict the least amount of stress on me. Feel free to canabalize my list if you need to:

  1. Go to bed now and sleep until January 1

I think I'll go work on that right now. I'm feeling sort of stressed.

Friday, October 5, 2007

Salt Dough Ghosts

We have a subscription to Family Fun and I really enjoy all of the really easy & very inexpensive craft projects they have. Since Nat's only now getting old enough to do any of them, I've been cutting out some of the ideas for the past few years and putting them into a binder for later - so we always have good ideas for fun things to do.

This Halloween, they had a really cute idea that looked so easy - even for a 3 year old. Family Fun always posts the directions to all of their projects on their website so for more ideas, go check it out!

Here's how to make them:


1 cup flour
1 cup salt
1/2 cup water
Wooden spoon
Fine-point permanent black marker
Time needed: Under 1 Hour

1. Combine the flour, salt, and water in a bowl. Stir the mixture with a wooden spoon until smooth. 2. Divide the dough into 6 equal pieces and shape each into a ghost, flattening the base so it will stand up. 3. Microwave the ghosts on a plate one or two at a time for 20- to 30-second intervals until the dough is fairly firm (about 1 1/2 to 2 minutes in total). Let the ghosts cool (they can get quite hot). 4. Use a fine-point permanent black marker to draw on eyes and a mouth.

Thursday, October 4, 2007

Can You See the Ghost?

I got this email this morning and I wanted to pass it along. The message from my friend was "it took me a minute but I think I got it..."

Please, it will only take a minute. It's way worth it!

Can You See the Ghost?

Wednesday, October 3, 2007

Breast Cancer

While I was in Idaho, I found out that one of my great-aunts had been diagnosed with breast cancer, and while she was able to fight and win, it could come back anytime.

Until now, I had no idea this was in our family at all. I've always supported various breast cancer awareness campaigns but never with any personal experience. I've actually never known anyone who has had breast cancer. I've run the Susan G. Koman 5k once, and donated money to cancer research from time to time but it's only because I know it's a crisis to many women and their families.

But it hit home when I found out that it could possibly be me someday. And why not? Am I so special that I will sidestep something so catastrophic? Surely I will be victim to something in my life, why not breast cancer. That's not fatalistic though, it's realism.

Anyhoo, October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month so I'm going pink in support. I encourage you all to go pink too and spread the word so that the 1.2 million women worldwide who will be diagnosed with breast cancer will have a chance at survival. Who knows, it could even be you.

Tuesday, October 2, 2007

I Left my House with neither mine nor Natalie's bed made. The dishes were NOT in the dishwasher and in fact, a half stick of butter is still sitting on the sink amongst a lot of other crap I left there from last night including half a piece of cooked chicken nobody ate.

Natalie's toys are all over the front room, a bag of chips is sitting open, on the couch...the laundry DID NOT make it to the laundry room nor did I do any laundry this morning before I left.

I barely even opened the curtains as I walked out the door feeling more than a little frazzled.

As I walked down the hallway toward the front door, I passed by my office which is usually relatively tidy. A hurricane must have blown in there overnight because every surface is a mess. It's obvious I was gone for a few days but what the heck did I do yesterday anyway?
I looked at my computer and I sighed. My calendar stood open on the screen and nothing was listed for today; which means that I did not organize my week and that's why my house looks this way. Those of you who know me well, know that this is not my typical pattern of behavior. Those of you who don't know me well are probably thinking, so what?

If you've been reading my blog for very long, you know about my New Year's Resolutions back from January, which for those of you who thought I'd forsaken them, I have not. I got a little distracted this summer but I have not forgotten even one of them.

The state of my home, as well as my routines that keep me sane, prove to me I need to get back into the habit of planning my week ahead and keeping to a schedule (both of which are part of my resolutions). Life is much smoother around the Nielsen place at all hours of the day, if mom is organized. DH is known to roll his eyes when I discuss my organizational habits but even he is likely to agree we're all happier when I am keeping a schedule. Better luck tomorrow.