Tuesday, February 23, 2010

nine

 We have been married for nine months! 

So, last time I (okay, ETF-izzle's photos) showed you that the babies (I use the word "baby" quite liberally - if you are still in single digits you are still a baby) hijacked our balloons.

  
  

We decided to get in on the fun, too...

 
  
 
  

  

  

 
 
  

There were clear jelly ball things in the vase to hold the flowers in place.  Towards the end of the party, everyone was throwing them.  Good times.

  

  
Mmmm...cake...

  

  
  
  

  

  
  

  


  

  
And they lived happily ever after.


The End.


It totally looks like an ending photo, except it's not quite the end!  We still have three more months and a TON more photos! 

Monday, February 22, 2010

Books 12-16

12.  "I'd tell you I love you, but then I'd have to kill you"  by Ally Carter  284 pages
13.  "Better Off Famous?"  by Jane Mendle  231 pages
14.  "Boogers Are My Beat"  by Dave Barry  242 pages
        I heart Dave Barry.  He is a funny, funny man.  He used to write for The Miami Herald.  I would read
       his columns aloud with my parents - stopping frequently because we were laughing so hard.  This book is
       a collection of some of his favorite columns.  I just wish he had included an "Ask Mr. Language Person"
       column.  Good stuff.
15.  "The Host"  by Stephanie Meyer  619 pages
       Though this book is by Stephanie Meyer, it is not a "Twilight" book - I had to tell T that several times.  I
       thought it was a good book, but slow at times.  I couldn't see how it was going to end.  And I really 
       liked that.  Most books, though enjoyable, are fairly predictable.  So this was a lovely change.  I wouldn't
       mind reading a sequel to this book (there's not one).
16.  "Eclipse"  by Stephanie Meyer  629 pages
       I was hesitant to read the "Twilight" books.  I saw "Twilight" the movie first. Sister-In-Law S said the  
       book was better and gave me her copy to read.  I'm not saying they are literary masterpieces, and I'm
       not a Twi-hard, but I really do like the books.  And why would Bella want Edward when she can have 
       Jacob?!  I just don't understand.  Jacob is her best friend, has killer abs and pecs, he's warm, and she
       wouldn't have to leave her family and die to be with him.  Obviously, Jacob is the better choice.  

       I haven't read the last book yet so don't ruin it for me.  In my head the last book should be:  Bella marries
       Edward.  Before he turns her into a vampire, they find out she is pregnant.  Edward refuses to turn Bella 
       into a vampire. Edward realizes he can never be a good father so he runs away forever.  All the Cullens
       follow. Jacob still loves Bella and Bella still loves him,  They get married and Jacob takes care of the
       baby and Bella.  And they all live happily ever after.  

       If the last Twilight book ends with Edward and Bella together Stephanie Meyer should write an 
       alternate ending where Bella ends up with Jacob.  It would make me happy and it would make Stephanie
       Meyer rich.  So a win-win situation.

       Please don't think I'm crazy!  

And if you do think I'm crazy you should give me a break because on Saturday I got the worst haircut of my life.  It's so bad there will be absolutely no photos.  I'm going to a different place on Tuesday to hopefully fix it as much as possible.   

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

To chop or not to chop

I love my long hair.  I've been growing it out for pretty much my entire life.  I had short hair for a year when I was about four and again for two years when I was a freshman / sophomore in college. 

(sophomore year - It was shorter freshman year but at this point I'm already growing it out.)

By senior year I had grown it out quite a bit.

 
(Me with Bestie E at The Shire)

Now my hair is even longer.  But is it healthy and does it look good?  I have seen people with super long hair but the last five inches are all nasty and uneven and scraggly.  I don't want to be that girl.  I have thin, fine hair that has no volume and won't hold a curl and long hair makes it even harder to fake volume and curls.  So...

This is what my hair looks like right this instant:





I'm thinking about a haircut.  This would be super easy if I lived in New York City and had $500 to drop on a haircut by Nick Arrojo.  (Nick Arrojo is a hairstyling super hero.  He used to do the hair portion of "What Not to Wear."  I have never once seen him give anyone a bad haircut / style.)  I would just tell Nick that I trusted him to do anything he saw fit.  Except I don't live in NYC.  And I don't have $500 to drop on a haircut.  And I wouldn't trust anyone but Nick to do anything they saw fit to my hair.  

Should I just get a trim?

Should I chop it all off?  

(from Nick Arrojo's book "Great Hair")

 (here)

I would never go this short (below) because I'm scared I would look like a boy - even though she pulls it off, I don't think I could.



I'm hesitant to chop it all off because I really do enjoy having long hair.  And if I cut my hair that short it will take a long while to get it really long again.

Should I leave it long and just add some layers like Hillary Duff, Alexis Bledel, and Lauren Graham (here, here, and here)?


I think part of the problem is that I don't just want the hair, I want to look like these people.

I'm leaning more towards the Alexis Bledel (Rory!) cut because it's in between just a trim and chopping it all off.  But is it too 2007?  Could I pull it off?  Or would something else look better?

I need advice, people!  Tell me what I should do!

Friday, February 12, 2010

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Happening now...


That's some crazy rain, yo.  Too bad it's not snow.  But maybe the pool will overflow! :)

Ta-da! (books)

I got a California license!  So now I have a library card!  Trust me, I was much more excited for the second one.  Here's the update on the book resolution:

7.  "Kitchen Table Wisdom" by Rachel Naomi Remen, M.D.  333 pages
     I read KTW while in line at the DMV.  It's a collection of true stories that draws on the concept of
     "kitchen table wisdom" - the tradition of shared experiences.  It is a bit of everything about how healing is
     not always done through medicine.
8.  "If Only it Were True" by Marc Levy  216 pages
      I think this is the book that the movie "Just Like Heaven" is based on.  The movie is ten times better.
9.  "Northanger Abbey" by Jane Austin  235 pages
     I like Jane Austin books (except for "Mansfield Park").  It's terribly cliche, but I do.  Once you get past 
     the first 60 pages, this one is a winner.
10.  "Poseur" by Rachel Maude  289 pages
11.  "The Things They Carried" by Tim O'Brien  246 pages
     For being about the soldiers in the Vietnam war, this book (of fiction) had a lot less violence and swearing
     than I was expecting. And I was glad.  There was definitely swearing and violence, but the book was
     mainly about the emotional and mental toll the war took on soldiers and how they coped.  It's a good
     book and I enjoyed it, but because of the subject and swearing I don't think I will read it again.  I have to
     share one excerpt that really made me think.  The main character goes back to Vietnam 20 years later to
     a field where he failed to save his best friend from dying during battle:

"This little field, I thought, had swallowed so much.  My best friend.  My pride.  My belief in myself as a man of some small dignity and courage.  Still it was hard to find any real emotion.  It simply wasn't there.  After that long night in the rain, I'd seemed to grow cold inside, all the illusion gone, all the old ambition and hopes for myself sucked away into the muck.  Over the years, that coldness had never entirely disappeared.  There were times in my life when I couldn't feel much, not sadness or pity or passion, and somehow I blamed this place for what I had become, and I blamed it for taking away the person I had once been."

This paragraph is what makes me nervous when people I know think about joining the military*.  I'm scared this will happen to them.  Though they will mostly be the same person, they will be different.  Not just because of what they've seen and done but because they will have remnants of that coldness inside of them. 

* * * * * * *

Yes, I read fluffy books ("Poseur," "Harry Potter," etc.).  Here's the thing:  most grown up books are serious.  And I like them.  But sometimes I've had enough seriousness.  I just want a quick, fluffy, entertaining read.  I don't want to have to think deep about meaning or think about serious things.  I just want to have fun.  And thus I read chick lit and young adult fiction often.  I think it's a good balance to all the serious stuff.  You know what they say:  All work and no play...



* I think the military is honorable.  I am glad that we have people willing to fight for freedom.  I am grateful for and proud of these people.  I admire soldiers and their families.  I know the risks these people take.  They are big.  And scary.  And very real.

Saturday, February 6, 2010

Rain! And the Super Bowl!

We had five straight days of rain a few weeks ago.  But the pool in the courtyard of our apartment never overflowed.  I was watching.  And I  really wanted it to.  The pool went back to the normal level.

It rained yesterday.  And it poured from 8 p.m. until about 6 a.m.  I went outside around 3 a.m. to listen and watch the rain because it was just so crazy.  I love rain.

We got so much rain last night - this is the closest the pool has been to overflowing:


The 5x5 tile that says 8 is almost completely submerged.  The regular water level is two inches below the start of the numbered tile.  Yay rain!  Boo, no overflowing!

You might notice that I am wearing a Reggie Bush Saints jersey.  I am extremely conflicted.  I've heart'd  Reggie Bush since his USC freshman year.  And Drew Brees since he was a Boilermaker.  And we have family in New Orleans.  And the Saints have never won a Super Bowl and you know how I love underdogs.  And if the Saints win the victory parade will be crazier than any Mardi Gras parade, and that's saying something.

But.

The first quarterback I ever loved was Steve Sarkisian from BYU when I was in fifth grade.  The second quarterback I ever loved was Peyton Manning at Tennessee when I was in sixth grade.  And I've been a Peyton fan ever since.  I have a long history with Peyton (well - not a personal history - just a fan history in case you were confused.).  Plus, the Colts have Aaron Francisco and Austin Collie from BYU.  I cheered for those guys in person in Provo-land.

I have no idea who I want to win.  Either way I'm going to be happy and sad.  But it should be an excellent game to watch.  But I don't know if I can stand to watch.  I can't wait!

Thursday, February 4, 2010

Emergency!

Today we had to make two emergency trips to the store.

The first one was for cheese and cereal.

The second one was for Dr. Pepper and donuts.

Don't judge.


Mom, the cat is not on the roof.
We are trying to figure out this private health insurance stuff.  This is how it makes me feel: 

It's a mess, but I'll take it over Obama-Care.

Wednesday, February 3, 2010

An intervention

A while back, I received a rather interesting letter from the United States of California. Apparently, they had gotten wind that I had been pulled over in Utah for speeding (5 mph over - well, at least that's what I was cited for... *shifty eyes*). On top of that, way back when when I was in Baltimore installing security systems I had also been pulled over for making an improper left turn. In my defense, the roads in Baltimore are screwy. No, seriously. You should go check them out. No, really - go ahead. I'll wait...

Huh? What do you mean you're located on the other side of the continental United States? Psh. Whatever. Okay, for those who don't want to take an awesome ROAD TRIP!!!! (and by awesome I mean you have to spend an entire day driving through Nebraska - that brings many words to mind, but trust me: awesome isn't one of them), here is a link to the Google machine that will show you what I mean. You see that intersection? The one where Charing Cross Rd hits the Baltimore Pike? It was nowhere near there.

Ha! Okay, actually it was right there. To make a long story short, I had just gotten through with an... interesting... install and was trying to get back on the main road to go grab some lunch (or at least I think that's what I was doing; in all honesty, I can't even remember what I wore yesterday, let alone what I was doing trying to get to the Baltimore Pike). But there I was on Old Frederick Road. I drove past the intersection of, um, Old... Frederick... Road?? (Seriously, Baltimore? You ran out of names so the best idea you could come up with was to name it the same and hope that nobody noticed?) and continued my journey on the smaller-yet-similarly-named... Old Frederick Road. I made it through the 40 feet of road identity theft and stopped at Charing Cross Road. See how it's a one-way street? Yeah, neither did I. If you look at the intersection in Street View, you'll notice that Baltimore conveniently left the "No left turn or going straight here" sign off the stop sign on the right - the one further up - the one you actually stop at. They also conveniently placed a member of the local law enforcement agency a quarter of a mile down in a parking lot, just watching for people like me to not see said sign.

I wish I could say that I led the MD state police in the longest interstate chase in twenty years. Actually, I wish I could even say the police was in his car when he pulled me over. Yes, you read correctly: he was on foot. As I came driving down Baltimore Pike (looking for lunch or quite possibly searching for two streets with different names), the officer took a leisurely stroll out into my lane and motioned for me to enter the parking lot of the small, quaint church where he was enjoying his day full of pulling people over for going straight.

The officer was none too amused with my report of roadentity theft. Or at least I imagine that he wouldn't have been. Five minutes later, I was back on my way (to where, we may never know) with a nice fat ticket under my belt.

Soooooo.... with two points on my record (I really don't understand how the whole drivers license system works here - is that a little? is that a lot?), California decided that it was time to take action. They didn't want to stand by idly while I willfully endangered my life and the lives of those around me. Especially little babies, the elderly, and those who drive 110mph down the 5 in their BMWs. So they staged an intervention.

Now, this intervention was not your typical intervention. There was no family or friends gathered 'round. There was no pleading through tears to change my ways. Cali decided to up the ante and went straight for the PASSIVE-AGGRESSIVELY GUILTING ME WITH A LETTER WRITTEN IN ALL CAPS INTO CHANGING MY WAYS approach.

I think it's pretty effective (note: the names have been changed to protect the identities of the innocent. I changed some road names, too - just for sport):


DEAR CALIFORNIA DRIVER:

DRIVERS WITH CRASHES AND TRAFFIC CONVICTIONS ON THEIR RECORDS ARE AT A GREATER RISK OF CAUSING FUTURE CRASHES. YOUR RECENT RECORD OF BAD DRIVING (SEE BELOW) PLACES YOU AT INCREASED RISK OF CAUSING CRASHES, INJURY AND DEATH. WE DO NOT WANT YOU TO SUFFER THOSE CONSEQUENCES AND WANT TO HELP YOU AVOID THEM.

WE UNDERSTAND THAT YOU MAY BELIEVE YOU AREA GOOD DRIVER, AND YET YOUR DRIVING RECORD IS MUCH WORSE THAN THE AVERAGE CALIFORNIA DRIVER. WHILE YOU MAY BE A GOOD AND SAFE DRIVER MOST OF THE TIME, YOUR RECORD REFLECTS AT LEAST MOMENTARY LAPSES IN DRIVING JUDGMENT. AT HIGHWAY SPEEDS, A MOMENT OF CARELESSNESS CAN BECOME A TRAGEDY. GOOD, CARING PEOPLE WHO MAKE CARELESS DECISIONS WHILE DRIVING CAN CAUSE INJURY OR DEATH.

IN OUR EFFORT TO URGE YOU TO DRIVE SAFER, WE ARE OFFERING YOU A CHOICE. YOU CAN CHOOSE TO PREVENT FURTHER ACTION FROM DMV BY AVOIDING ADDITIONAL TRAFFIC CONVICTIONS AND BY NOT CAUSING ANY CRASHES. HOWEVER, IF YOU CHOOSE TO CONTINUE YOUR UNSAFE DRIVING, THE PENALTIES WILL INCREASE AND EVENTUALLY LEAD TO PROBATION, SUSPENSION OR REVOCATION OF YOUR DRIVING PRIVILEGE.

WE BELIVE YOU ARE CAPABLE OF MAKING A CHANGE TO BECOME A SAFER DRIVER, BUT IT IS UP TO YOU TO DO SO. IF YOU DO NOT WANT TO CHANGE, YOUR DRIVING WILL CONTINUE TO PRESENT A RISK TO YOURSELF AND OTHER ROAD USERS. IF YOU WANT TO CHANGE AND BECOME A SAFER, MORE RESPONSIBLE DRIVER, YOU CAN. WE HOPE THAT YOU WILL DECIDE TO CHANGE, BUT THE CHOICE IS YOURS.

So there you have it. Apparently California is worried that I am listening to too much rock and roll and am going to become a hoodlum and turn to a life of crime.

Remember kids: you have a choice (SEE BELOW)! =)

T

On Saturday T:
1.  Cleaned the bathroom
2.  Did the dishes
3.  Did the laundry
4.  Fixed the printer
5.  Listened to me practice my lesson
6.  Listened when I freaked out about having to give the lesson the next day

He's wonderful.  Just thought you should know.

Monday, February 1, 2010

The DMVizzle

Really, I cannot stop myself from adding izzle on the end of almost everything.  It's a disease.  But a very fun one to have.  And don't worry, I don't use izzle in public.  Only in my head (and thus the blog).  And with T.  And my mom.

Anyway, I went to the DMV to get a California license so I could get a library card.  I thought about getting a CA license in October so I could vote, but as it turns out there was not a single election for the district we were living in at that time.  So I am just getting one now.  I kept my maiden name so I got to skip the extra steps for a name change.  There's nothing wrong with T's last name, I am just very attached to my last name.

I went on a Wednesday, because who would take Wednesday off to go to the DMV?  Apparently, a lot of people.  I left the house at nine a.m. and the internet said the wait was four minutes.  Half an hour later I arrived at the DMV saw the line half way around the building.  I couldn't find a parking spot and had to park on the street a block up.

I was in the line outside for over an hour.  At least it was a lovely day and the rain had stopped on Monday.  I was at the DMV for just under three hours total.  I was only mildly interested in the book I brought so I did some subtle people watching.  The guy in line behind me rescued a girl in line's scarf from under a car.  I don't know why, but that just struck me as extraordinarily nice.  I mean, of course it was nice, but it just seemed like that was the first nice thing I have ever seen a stranger do for another stranger in  Southern California.  It almost made me tear up. 

It's strange because in Utah I felt like people were mostly willing to be nice to strangers.  In New York City I felt like people most of the time didn't really care about strangers one way or the other.  In Southern California  I feel like people are actively out to get strangers.  Of course these are crazy broad generalizations but that is how it feels to me.

Anyway, all of the worker bees I interacted with at the DMV were polite and not grumpy at all.  So a very different SoCal DMV experience than T's.

The part that made me most nervous is the eye exam (not the written test - please! - I got 100%).  I have always hated eye exams because they make me so nervous.  I know that's ridiculous because it's not like you can study for them.  But I always feel so stupid when I can't read the little letters.  And then when I can't read the next size up either.  I'm not sure what exactly I am scared about.  Maybe that others will know I'm blind?  Or that I have to admit to someone else that I'm blind?  Or having my classmates know that I'm blind?  Or that it's a test that I have absolutely no control over?  Or something else?  I'm not sure.

The first eye exam I remember being nervous about was in third grade.  This was the kind of eye exam where they line the whole class up and the PTA volunteers take kids one at a time to read a chart on the other side of the gym.  I didn't pass.

From elementary through high school I would hate driving in the car with my parents when they would ask me to help them read the street signs.  Now I realize my parents were just trying to find a certain street in an unfamiliar area, but back then I thought it was an eye test and I hated it and often refused to do it. 

I hate going to the eye doctor even now and there's no one else around in that little room except the doctor and me (and my mom).  I hate how you put your eyes up to that big machine and he flips the letters around and you can't tell if you're supposed to be able to read it or not.  Really, every time I get my eyes checked I feel like crying.

I had lasik when I was a senior in college, but over this summer I noticed that my eyes were not as sharp as they used to be.  I think I need a touch up and I wasn't sure if I would be able to read the sign at the DMV.  But I did just fine.  The DMV lady came at me with a paper to cover one of my eyes and I seriously thought she was going to give me a paper cut on my eye.

Oh, the State of California now has my right thumbprint on file.  They have you grab a plastic mold and rest your thumb on top to capture your thumbprint electronically.  I wonder what they would do if you didn't have a right hand (the mold is specific for the right hand)?  Or if you refused to give them a thumbprint?  And why do they need my thumbprint in the first place? 

Also, they took my picture and didn't ask if I wanted to see it or re-do it or anything (they asked both times in Utah).  They printed a small black and white copy that I had to show to take the written test and the picture looks okay even though my hair is a bit wonky.  Then after I finished the written test the DMV took away my California picture and punched a hole in my Utah license.

My temporary license is just three half sheets of paper stapled together.  My picture is nowhere on any of these papers.  Odd.  The temporary Utah ones look just like a real license but in paper and black and white.  This California place is very strange.

I still don't feel like a California resident.  Probably because of the strange temporary license and the fact that it is just a temporary license.  And the fact that I still carry around my Utah license.  I guess I am having a hard time letting go.  But you probably knew that way before now.

Goodness, this post has been all over.  If you have actually managed to read it all... well, you deserve a medal.