Saturday, December 26, 2009

I Told You

A while back I told you that soon I would have incontrovertible proof that I am a ninja. Well, it's finally here. And don't be hating my hair/smudgy makeup. This is pretty much right after rolling out of bed on Christmas morning.

Monday, December 21, 2009

On Hold

The breakthrough will have to wait. Through his actions, theEx kindly reminded me today in mediation of some of the reasons we are divorcing. I'm feeling more like breaking something than grieving. Good riddance, I say. I'll be back on track tomorrow or the next day - I've never been able to hold on to feelings of hate very long. And as for how this feeling actually manifests itself, I get very quiet and shut down. I just want to go to sleep. I've also been stuffing my face for the last hour (Thai curry, a raw date/nut bar, and coconut patties).

Other side of the coin

I am losing a lot. But there are some benefits too. For example, I can now freely listen to:

- Bolero (TheEx was hazed into his fraternity with that song playing on repeat in the background for hours and understandably hated it)

- Elvis (his mother listened to this a lot when he was a kid and he was all Elvised out)

- military/soldier songs (he really wanted to be in the military and it was hard for him to listen to soldier songs)

Saturday, December 12, 2009

You really want that mustard blend

Google Analytics has been tracking my website for just over 3 years. I assume that's when I installed Analytics, since my blog is actually nearly 5 years old. Over the past 3 years, the top keywords used to find my blog have consistently been some variation of "Texadelphia mustard blend". As of today, my top 10 results are:

1. katie words
2. katies world
3. texadelphia mustard blend recipe
4. texadelphia queso recipe
5. texadelphia calories
6. bajio grill calories
7. texadelphia nutritional info
8. texadelphia mustard sauce recipe
9. texadelphia mustard blend
10. katie's world

I have a few things to say about this. First of all, if you're concerned about calories or nutrition, don't even bother going to Texadelphia. Seriously. No matter what your nutritional concern is, they probably violate it. But it just tastes so darn good. Mmmmm.

Secondly, I posted once about trying to figure out the Texadelphia mustard blend recipe. But I never got around to doing it! So you're out of luck with that. Part of the reason I didn't do it is because the Texadelphia Cheesesteak with mustard blend is an entire experience. The mustard blend is great, but the cheesesteak itself is unique as well. I assumed that even if I found a cheesesteak in Utah and added my own mustard blend, it would never match up to the real thing. I'll just have to wait until the next time I visit Texas (they have locations in Houston, Austin, Dallas, or San Antonio).

Also, as a little dose of reality, I don't really get THAT many hits on Texadelphia. Over the past 3 years, I've had 274 visits to my blog from people looking for Texadelphia. That's a lot, but not really, when spread over 3 years.

I didn't look very closely at my results, other than to skim looking for the word Texadelphia, but these were two of the weirdest results I had:

"women" "typical passwords" "email"
First of all, I don't think you need to use that many quote marks. Second, mind your own business. However, if your wife is cheating on you and you need that password to confirm it, go for it!


average hair grow 40 feet per night
Um, I don't think you would call that average. But wouldn't that be awesome? You could go with a short spiky cut one day, and the next have it floor length. If I ever get my own world, in addition to all the hair being rainbow colored, it's going to grow as fast as the person wants it to.

Friday, December 11, 2009

Worst Christmas Song of All Time

Which Christmas song do you dislike the most? I think this is one of my least favorites:



The benefit of this video is that it has sweet 80's style!

Why on earth would people do covers of this song?









Even Glee is getting in on it?!?!



And no, of course I didn't listen to all of those before I embedded them. Ew. I did have to at least listen to a few seconds to make sure it really was the same song. The one by Cascada (whoever they/she are/is) is slightly acceptable.

Monday, December 07, 2009

Tuesday, December 01, 2009

Gifts

I was reading the Dave Ramsey newsletter this week, and I came across this story about a horrible gift:
Christmas 1994 – It was our first Christmas together as a married couple. My husband bought me an ironing board because he needed his shirts to be ironed. He also bought me cookie sheets and cooling racks. I was furious! Now we laugh about it.

Is there something wrong with those gifts? I'll admit that I'm not your stereotypical woman. And 'receiving gifts' comes in last place on my list of Love Languages. So maybe I just don't get it. I mean, of course I like romantic gifts. But I always want the types of things this lady mentions. One of my most memorable Valentine's Day gifts was when I got a gift certificate to Pampered Chef. And last year I asked for an ironing board for my birthday.

Maybe it was the intent behind the gift. I got the cooking stuff because I wanted it. I got the ironing board because I needed it to iron my own clothes. This lady's husband sounds like he got these things to benefit himself. I can see the difference there. But other than that, am I just weird for wanting practical, useful things?

This year I have received or bought myself several nice birthday/Christmas gifts. My parents gave me money for a haircut, and I am going to buy a dress. But my other super-awesome gift that I'm buying for myself is a Bissell Steam Mop! Amazon has got it on sale for $30 off right now. (That link is my friend's affiliate link. She loves the Bissell Steam Mop and has written about it on several of her blogs over the years.) I am beyond excited to get this! I don't think I'll be waiting until Christmas to use it.

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Change?

I really do like to try new hobbies, taste new foods, learn new skills, meet new people, and so on. But on the other hand, I definitely like the security of known things. I usually only end up trying new things when other people initiate it. And I love nearly everything I try. When I was in Houston, my coworkers introduced me to Japanese, Thai, and Korean foods. I liked it all! Well, except the pickled ginger. I usually don't eat that, but I have tried it and don't hate it. There's a Thai restaurant nearby I've always wanted to try. I know I would like it. But I always find myself going to the same gross fast food places when we're out. (I think I've eaten more fast food in the last month than I did in the last year or two. Must remedy!) Today at about 2 pm I realized I hadn't eaten anything except 2 pieces of toast and a piece of fudge all day. I didn't have the kids with me, so I could go ANYWHERE I wanted. But I decided to just be boring and go to Wendy's. Unfortunately, I did not realize there was a BYU football game, so it took me 25 minutes to make a 10-minute trip and I didn't have time to go to Wendy's. Later I did go to the Thai restaurant for take out, and as I knew it would, it tasted fantastic. (Though I spent 5x what I would have at Wendy's.) Why don't I branch out more often?!

I watch the same movies I've always liked. I listen to the same songs (or at least artists) I've always liked. Repeat ad infinitum.

When we got married 9 years ago, I got eggplant purple sheets. I am 90% certain that I had the same color sheets my first year of college as well. Three years ago I wanted to totally change everything, so I bought some cheap scratchy green sheets. But the eggplant purple/pink (from bleach) sheets stayed in rotation. I went to ShopKo on Friday. They had $90 sheets on sale for $30. Luxuriously satiny sheets! I decided that I deserved and needed brand news sheets. I looked at all the beautiful colors in front of me and spent several minutes deciding which ones I wanted. I chose the eggplant purple set :-D Why wouldn't I? It's absolutely gorgeous and I love it, even after 10 years of looking at it. It is the color of royalty, after all! As the family queen, I figure it's fitting :-)

So anyway, though I'm satisfied with the things I do, I want to try more new things. I have always had good experiences trying new things so there's really no reason not to. Oh, except that pesky problem of me being very introverted. That makes it a little more difficult.

Friday, November 27, 2009

More Fun for Country Fans

A couple of days ago I didn't feel like listening to all the peppy (country) songs in my playlist, so I cleared a bunch of songs out and added a ton of others in. After listening to them for a while I realized that I ended up with a half lovey-dovey and half depressing playlist! Slow country songs are either totally lovey-dovey or totally depressing. I think I am getting a little bit 'down', but I'm definitely not depressed. I'm just taking this lull as part of the cycle of life -- it's all good!

One of my all-time favorite songs that ended up in that playlist is this classic hit by George Strait -- Amarillo By Morning. I love it SO much. I'm not sure why. I think it's mainly because of the absolutely gorgeous violin part that is prominently featured throughout the song. The song itself is alternately hopeful, wistful, and sad. It's about a cowboy who has lost everything (possessions, saddle, leg, wife, girlfriend, money) but is still traveling from rodeo to rodeo, glad that he's free even though he hasn't got much.



One problem with listening to George Strait (versus other country singers) is that his songs really make me miss Texas :(

I didn't think it was possible to improve George Strait's singing, but might I dare say that Kenny Chesney's version is just as good and possibly 0.1% better than George Strait's? Kenny has just got a little 'something' to his voice that is spectacular on this song. But Kenny - what the crap is up with the sleeveless shirt in this venue? This was taped at an awards show, and you can tell they're trying to look nice because the band is wearing suits. And Kenny still wears a sleeveless shirt? Come on! I just found out he's a shorter guy -- 5'8" -- so maybe he's afraid people might not know how manly he is if he doesn't show off his arms.




I did find a Youtube version of a George Strait concert that Kenny went to as a spectator. George invited Kenny up on the stage, and they sang together. But the sound is terrible on this (unless you like listening to screaming).



Oh, here's the original from 1987. The sound has changed a little over the years, which is why I linked to the live version up there.

Friday, November 20, 2009

Really?

I get 2/3 of the way through NaBloPoMo and then forget to post? Really? Oh well. With my new goals of practicing for The Messiah and getting to bed on time, there wasn't much time for blogging/internetting anyway!

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

A hippo? With Noodles?

I know this is a total cop out, but in case I don't have time for a real post later, I'll leave you with this. My kids absolutely love this. I have never figured out if it supposed to be about something (probably something inappropriate, as most humor is). But in the meantime, I think it's really funny.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Heels Experiment

I wrote about wanting to try to wear high heels a while back. I did wear heels every day for a week and continue to wear the brown ones occasionally. They only hurt 65% of the time instead of 100%.

However, I declare the heels experiment a failure. There are several reasons:

1) Discomfort. I refuse to be that uncomfortable. Someday if I get some better shoes maybe I can overcome this problem, but in the meantime I am not willing to sacrifice comfort for (theoretical) looks.

2) Health. I am not interested in ending up with deformed feet/legs/back due to heels.

3) This is the most important of all -- loss of stealth capabilities! You might not realize this, but I am a ninja. Now, they say that a REAL ninja wouldn't tell anyone they are a ninja. Whatever; that's a total myth. (I will likely have incontrovertible proof that I am a ninja soon.) It's very difficult to be all stealthy and ninja-like if you are wearing loud high heels. In addition to being a stealthy ninja, I am a total INTROVERT. I sneak around silently so as not to draw any attention to myself. Heels have the opposite effect - usually they are very loud (my brown ones have rubber soles, so they aren't as bad). Also, I would be the only one at my company wearing them, so they draw undue attention. Drawing attention to myself is rarely on my list of goals for the day. Avoiding everyone is more like it. Remember the engineering.com swine flu video? Engineers despise public. So true.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Whoops!

16 days into NaBloPoMo, and I almost forgot to post today.

I'll tell you about my budgeting fail. One of my major rules for following a budget needs to be "only go to the store once a week, and FOLLOW the list." Tonight we stopped by the store to get milk, bread, eggs, and raisins. The milk was the most important thing we needed. I exited the store $51 lighter. How did that happen?!?

When we walked in, I saw the Rice Chex, on sale for cheaper than the generic brand. That's YoungestSon's favorite cereal, so I stocked up. Then I remembered that I want to make my sister some cookies (sssshhh, she reads this blog and it's a secret, so I have to whisper), so I bought some good chocolate chips and some hopefully non-rancid walnuts. Then on the way to the bread, I saw the Hickory Farms display including Summer Sausage and mustard. It's my dad's birthday, so I picked up some of those. Then, bread was on sale, so we got 3 loaves. On the way to the dairy case, I made the brilliant decision to go down the toy aisle. I've been wanting some more dice, so I grabbed a pack of those for $2. The kids saw some sticker books for $1.25 each, and I was feeling very generous, so I got 3. Finally we got to the eggs, and of course I had to add in some butter for the cookies. But I forgot the milk.

Whoops.

Fortunately the budget isn't totally blown. I still have $16 for the rest of the week and plenty of stuff to cook with here at home. Except no milk for the kids. I have homemade almond milk for myself, but they're too chicken to drink it.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

30 by 30

I'm pretty bad at goal-setting. I have all these fairly nebulous ideas of what I want out of life (loving husband, being a stay at home mom, house with white picket fence, financial freedom, etc.) but I'm scared to commit it to paper and determine the actual steps I will need to take to reach these goals. There's a pretty obvious explanation -- if I never actually set the goal, there's no sense of failure or disappointment if I don't achieve it. I am realizing that I am very scared of failure, and that in some areas of life, I set the bar as low as I need to in order to ensure that I don't fail. It's honestly pretty sad.

I thought that putting together a list of 30 Goals by Age 30 might help kick-start me into a goal-setting and achieving mindset. I have just over one year to complete all of these, so they are fairly simple, nothing dramatic or crazy.

(I will strike through the goals as I complete them!)

1) Make Nie Nie's Mud Cake Magnifique (I wanted to make this for my birthday this year but didn't get around to it. I'll make this version.)
2) Begin a set community service time at least twice monthly with the kids, such as visiting a nursing home
3) Complete all 30 days of the 30-Day Shred
4) Run a 5K race
5) Run a mile in under 10 minutes
6) Read 6 books (I used to read about that many in a week or two)
7) Go on a date
8) Take the kids sledding (I avoid being cold as much as possible)
9) Systematically declutter the entire house
10) Take a family vacation
11) Make a treasure map/vision board (astrologists say the best time to do it is Aries New Moon, not January 1st)
12) Make plans for my life on paper
13) Learn how to knit in a relaxing manner (it tenses my shoulders up badly)
14) Have a Lord of the Rings marathon (or Star Wars could be substituted if I wnt to involve the kids and they can't handle LOTR)
15) Give blood twice (have done once)
16) Go to a country dance
17) Have a (pint or larger) green smoothie every day for a month
18) Clean the house and stick to a program/method of keeping it relatively clean and clutter free (probably Flylady or some variation thereof)
19) Maintain an Emergency Fund savings account of $1000 and replenish it each time any is used (I wanted to do a debt-reduction goal, but this area of my life is SO up in the air right now)
20) Take the kids on a picnic
21) Get a house/dwelling with a backyard and have a successful garden
22) Organize my recipes
23) Go to a concert, opera, or play
24) Start digital scrapbooking (I have software, lessons, tutorials, kits, and Quick Albums already)
25) Start a business
26) Avoid getting married (I have nothing against getting married eventually but I need to be smart about it and not rush into things this time)
27) Determine, accept, and move forward courageously with my religious/spiritual beliefs
28) Become licensed as a professional engineer
29) Make friends with a real-live woman (not just on the internet), including actually doing something with her face to face (outside of Visiting Teaching, Relief Society Meetings [fka "Home, Family, and Personal Enrichment", fka "Homemaking Night"], etc.)
30) Get my kids in bed by 8:30 for 30 days, use the time in the evening to work on these goals or do something for myself (NOT including mindlessly wasting time on the internet), and go to bed early enough to get 8 hours of sleep (this goal might directly conflict with #25)

Saturday, November 14, 2009

Can You See Me Now?

Sometimes I attempt to wear makeup. I am never consistent about it though. I think when I worked in Houston for 2 years, I wore it the whole time, but that's probably my longest run since age 14. I had to wear makeup for an interview on September 30th of this year, and I decided to keep wearing it afterward. So I've worn it every week day since, except the day I had that big 8-hour test. That day, I looked at myself in the mirror and thought "Wow, I look SO different without makeup. I look sickly and pale."

Now, it's entirely possible that the makeup had nothing to do with it, and I did look sickly and pale, because that was an awful day and the bathroom had very unflattering lighting, and on average I've been getting about 5 hours sleep per night. But I was a little annoyed that after just a month of wearing makeup, I already felt like I had to have it to look decent. I have decided to continue wearing it, because I do work in a professional world, and statistically, women wearing makeup get a better response professionally, including in their amount of pay. I know a lot of women think makeup is really fun, and I TOTALLY get that (that link takes you to Wisely Chosen's absolutely fabulous and gorgeous makeup pictures), but it's just not me. Stuff like that just doesn't come naturally to me. I'd rather spend my time doing other things, and keep life as simple as possible. Buying makeup, learning how to use it, maintaining it, keeping it out of the kids' reach (or helping them use it safely), and spending the time to use it and remove it each day is NOT simplifying my life.

Darn it, I meant this to be a lighthearted picture post, not a rant about society and makeup. Oh well. Writing is therapeutic for me, so I just go with what comes out my fingers.

The mascara is the main feature for me. My eyelashes are pretty much invisible without it. I wear brown-black mascara. I sometimes wear brown eyeliner, but lately I've been leaving it out because I just can't get it right, even after attempting it for 14+ years. My eyebrows are also mostly invisible (as far as I can see), and someday I intend to learn how to put some color on them, but I don't do that now. I have never, ever in my entire life, plucked my eyebrows, since I think they're invisible. I hope I'm right!!! I did get them waxed once before my sister's wedding.

I own four colors of eyeshadow - white, tan, brown, and pink (not like this). I do know how to use it, kind of, because I had my makeup done professionally by a salon owner/artist when I was 14, and she showed me how to do it. But the high-quality brushes don't work with crappy grocery store makeup, so I just muddle through and hope it doesn't look too bad.

In the past I've attempted wearing blush, lip liner, and lipstick, but that's long in the past. I did buy some pale/nude lip gloss a while ago. I really don't know how to wear lipstick/lip gloss. It's always gone within minutes. I always bite it off. I have never worn foundation or concealer, and hope to not have to. But if my face doesn't get the memo that we are no longer 15 years old, I may have to think about it. But I DO NOT WANT to cover up my freckles AT ALL, and I am not sure that's possible unless I wear an extremely sheer foundation, and then what's the point of wearing one? I do need to get some moisturizer or start using coconut oil or something. I am going to have fabulous wrinkles when I am old, and I am not interested in doing anything other than wearing moisturizer to stop that process.

----> OK, this is where the post was SUPPOSED to start. My coworkers the other day were talking about makeup. I said that my sister says my makeup is too light to see. My coworker said she couldn't see mine! So I took some close up pictures to see if she was right. I guess she was!

Sorry that some of these are so blurry -- I wanted them to be done without a flash, and it's difficult to get good pictures that way, and I'm too lazy to redo it.

No makeup:




Wow, with all that purple under my eyes, people probably think I'm a vampire or something!

With all my makeup (there's even eyeliner):




You can definitely tell a huge difference with the mascara, but the rest isn't all that different.

I decided to do one with the flash. The difference in what shows up is amazing. I wonder which picture is more accurate to what people see in real life, indoors or out?:

Friday, November 13, 2009

Again

I posted almost the exact same thing 2 months ago, but this one is even better:

What happens when people with curly hair brush their hair:




I had several inches trimmed (at the longest point), and here's what it looks like now:



It looks SO short to me!

Also, looking at that picture is driving me crazy -- it's so uneven on the right side! The problem is that it was trimmed while pulled straight, and the curls all shrink up differently when dry. It should be trimmed curly, not straight. Which is why curly girls need to pay $$$$ for special hairdressers trained in curly haircutting techniques.

Thursday, November 12, 2009

Another Experiment

Today's experiment is totally different, but also food/beverage related. The other day we had salmon and potatoes for dinner. After dinner, I made up a container of leftovers for work, and put all the remainder back into the casserole dish. The work leftovers made it into the fridge; the rest didn't. It was left out for an unspecified length of time. But I couldn't bear to throw it away! I mean, it's salmon! It's so tasty, and so expensive. I decided not to let the kids have it (sad, because they are the ones who need it most), but that I would give it a try. So, I'm eating it today. If this blog goes un-updated after today, you'll know why. I've heard of college kids eating several-days-old pizza and being fine. I've also heard of someone eating a baked potato that was left out and getting very sick. Perhaps the college kids were protected by the vast quantities of alcohol flowing through their systems. Good luck to me!

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Caffeinated Soda Experiment Concluded

OK, I went for the diet mtn dew (usually I would type ‘Diet Mountain Dew’, but ‘diet mtn dew’ is how it’s written on the label – absolutely ridiculous), because it was a 20-ounce and I figured I might as well go for the largest amount of caffeine possible.

(10:30 am) First reaction – it burns!! I don’t know if I’ll be able to do more than sip daintily at it. It burns my tongue and throat and my eyes are watering. Also, it tastes totally gross. I like the citrus flavor, but the nasty fake sweetener grossness is overpowering. Ew. I’d probably have the same problem with a non-diet drink, because high fructose corn syrup tastes really fake and gross to me too.

I wonder how much I have to drink and how long I have to wait before I feel a difference? So far I’ve got about 1 tablespoon down.

(10:50) Still haven’t had more than 1 tablespoon. At this rate I’ll have gone through about 3 ounces by tonight. I’m going to just go for it.

Ugh. . . . that does NOT feel nice. Everything is burning!

OK, now I feel like I’m going to throw up. My stomach is protesting.

Uh, so what am I supposed to do with all the carbonation that wants to come back up? Just burp a lot? How attractive.

Ugh, I don’t know if I can get any more down. I’ve had about 8 ounces.

(11:00) I can see why this is called ‘diet’ mtn dew. The way my stomach feels, I don’t think I’m ever going to be able to eat anything ever again. I do feel more alert. Is that because I got up and walked around for a few minutes, or because we're busy today, or is it because I’m engaged in writing this terribly interesting diatribe, or can the caffeine do that this quickly?

Yeowch!! Apparently it burns on the way back up too (burping). Except this time it was all through my nose because I had my mouth closed. That smarts!

(11:10) Feeling queasy. I’m going to try a bit more. . .

It’s burning a little less on the way down now. Oh, weird, it’s almost like I can actually feel it burning in my stomach though. I didn’t notice that so much before since the other burning sensations were so strong.

(11:20) Aah, a drink of refreshing water. Why would anyone drink anything that is so difficult and gross to get down when you could have easy, clear, refreshing water instead?

(1:00 pm) I went to talk to my friend upstairs and was telling her several funny stories about TheEx. (Several months ago they would have been tragedies; now they’re hilarious.) I also told her about my caffeine experiment. She said “oh, is that why you’re so chipper today?” I realized I was acting a bit crazy/hyper. Also, I am a little bit shaky. But I was shaky before I had the caffeine, because of the tiredness. My stomach may be calmed down enough to have a little bit of lunch.

(1:45) I still have about 8-10 ounces of the 20-ounce drink left. I can’t even stomach the thought of drinking it.

(3:25) Feeling tired again. My stomach turns at the thought of finishing the mtn dew.

(4:00) More tired. I might just go for it again. It’s been sitting out all day though and is probably warm by now. Although I suddenly feel like throwing up at the thought of drinking it. Oh well. Bottoms up.

Blech!! Such a gross, slimy aftertaste. I’ve heard that people have to force themselves to learn to like the taste of cigarettes and sometimes alcohol. Is it the same with drinks like diet mtn dew? Does anyone actually enjoy this taste their first time? (That’s what she said!) [I hate that joke, by the way; I think it is so dumb. I've never even seen the Wayne's World skits on SNL, which is apparently where it originated.]

(4:20) OK, about 4-6 ounces left. I am going to bed early tonight, so I’d better finish this off soon in case it keeps me up later.

(4:30) Never mind. This is just too gross. I am not finishing it. I have had about half my normal amount of water today, so I’m done with the diet mtn nastiness and am refilling my water cup!

(4:35) OK, the diet mtn yuck is in the trash. Experiment OVER!

That was so gross. Just so, so gross. I can still taste it and feel it in my mouth, no matter how much water I drink. Yucky. I can’t even tell if it made a difference. On slow days at work, I am really tired. On busy days, I am not tired. Today was busy. So was it the caffeine helping me feel less tired, or because today was a busy one? I have no idea. And I am certainly not willing to try the experiment again to find out. Oh, if I really wanted to, I would be willing to try other forms of caffeine, like caffeine tablets or yerba mate, but I don’t even want to do that. I have a very addictive personality, and I am sure I could get addicted to caffeine quickly. Look at the tagline of this blog – “whining about sugar since 2005”. I am totally addicted to sugar/chocolate. I am sure caffeine would pull me in just as quickly.

So, conclusion: Soda is gross. Especially diet mtn dew with no capitals. Don’t try this at home.

An experiment

I never drink caffeinated drinks. It has little to do with perceived LDS doctrine (in case you were wondering), it's that I have always hated soda pop of any type, caffeinated or not. It hurts my stomach and my nose. I have TASTED caffeinated drinks, but never guzzled it like some people. There was one time I remember drinking a soda quickly. It was the middle of summer, deathly hot. We'd been in the car for a long time for some reason. I got a Welch's Grape Soda and drank the whole thing down. I also do not drink soda of any type for health reasons (all that sugar or artificial sweetener), and I don't drink caffeinated because I know I'd get addicted.

There was one time I did have some caffeinated drinks. I get drowsy so easily when I drive, so I was terrified to drive from Houston to Provo. I figured that was as good a time as any to try energy drinks. In one morning, I had a 16-ounce and a 24-ounce Rockstar Juiced Mango. That adds up to 400 mg of caffeine. Your average soda has 40-55 mg. So I pretty much drank the equivalent of 10 Pepsis. I ended up feeling all sick and jittery and had to sleep it off at a park in Colorado for a while. But I didn't fall asleep in the car! I'm not sure if that time counts since it was so much all at once.

OK, wow, I can turn the tiniest statement into a whole slew of paragraphs. What I was trying to get to is this -- last night I got 4.5 hours of sleep. So I'm not really doing so well at this 'staying awake' thing today. So today is the perfect opportunity to try a caffeine experiment. Our drink machine has Pepsi, Dr. Pepper, Diet Mountain Dew, and Diet Coke. My first inclination is that the diet drinks are automatically out. Artificial sweeteners, no thanks. But why not? The ingredients in Pepsi/Dr. Pepper aren't too great either. I have tasted Pepsi, and I know I like that. I don't really remember what Dr. Pepper tastes like, but I'm thinking it will be way too sweet. Probably all of them will, since I'm used to drinking water or stuff like almond milk, which is a little bitter. Diet Coke - I have no idea what that tastes like. I think I have a vague idea of what Mountain Dew tastes like, but I'm not sure. The Diet Mountain Dew has the most caffeine, so I am thinking I might go for that. It's either that or Pepsi. I will let you know what happens. I have to sneak over to the vending machine when no one is looking - I am supposed to be the 'health nut' at work, not the caffeine swilling HCFS addict.

Not Cool

Today, OldestSon was sick (threw up on the way to school!), so I stashed him under my desk at work all day. Seriously, I really did. We had dentist appointments in the morning, so I stuck him under the desk, where he slept until we went to the dentist. After the dentist, we brought back a load of blankets, pillows, books, & the computer and DVDs. He hung out, watched DVDs, and slept until it was time to leave. Of course I didn't ask permission -- I'm the 'do it and ask forgiveness later' type of person.

Something very sad happened though. I encouraged OldestSon to watch Napoleon Dynamite, which he readily agreed to. But during the part with 'Do the chickens have large talons?' he didn't want to watch it any more!!! He switched to Wall-E instead. I guess not everyone can appreciate Napoleon Dynamite. Or maybe it takes a really big dork to appreciate the dorkiness.

I found out about Napoleon Dynamite before it was ever released. A woman in our ward was a relative of one of the writers or something. She kept telling us about this awesome movie and I was like 'uh, whatever'. I don't remember when I finally saw it, but I was hooked immediately. I've probably only seen it 3 times but have most of it memorized.

I should probably start taking friends' recommendations about new movies and books seriously. I had another friend who kept telling me about some really weird-sounding vampire books and putting weird vampire quotes in her signature line long before Twilight became really popular. She is a relative of Stephenie Meyer's. I could have totally been the first on the Twilight bandwagon, and started a Twilight store and made billions, but I missed the opportunity. My friend did end up running a Twilight business which made a full-time income for her and her husband for a while.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Yes!! I am safe!!

Edited to add: This video plays automatically and I can't figure out how to stop it, so I'm removing the embedded video and putting this link up:

http://engineering.com/Videos/VideoPlayer/tabid/4627/VideoId/1174/Engineers-Immune-To-Swine-Flu.aspx

Some of it is REALLY funny; you've got to check it out.

Letter to Me

Dear Face,
We are no longer 15 years old. I just thought you should know, because apparently you didn't get the memo. Please take care of this immediately. You really aren't that stressed, are you?

Thanks,
Me

Monday, November 09, 2009

All Year

Well, my plan to go to bed early tonight was derailed, again (by me). So, why not post on my blog since it will count for Monday? So far my November posts have been between 12-4 am, why break the run now?

So, as I mentioned, I love trees. They are so beautiful, most of the year. But then they lose their leaves and look sad and ugly. Of course I notice the beauty of the evergreens more during the winter; that's one benefit of the other trees losing their leaves. And all snow-covered trees are gorgeous, but that's relatively rare. So I have been sad thinking about the pending winter and the pending ugliness of all the trees. I was supposed to be in Houston by now, where trees don't look barren and sad all winter long. That makes facing this winter all the more difficult. But then I thought, hey, why accept the loss of tree-beauty during the winter? Why not learn to find beauty in leafless trees instead? So that's what I've been doing. Most of the trees are still fiery and beautiful with their rainbow leaves, but a few have lost all their foliage already. I have tried looking at them with a new eye, trying to find the beauty in them. You can see their lines and shapes easily, now that they aren't covered by leaves. They are fairly monochrome, which is actually quite interesting. I suspect that now that I've decided that leafless trees are beautiful, I'll begin to see them as such.

(Unfortunately my 'appreciate what God/Nature gave me by not shaving' experiment isn't going so well. I still gross myself out occasionally. It's only been 3 months; I'm not sure if I should stick with it or say 'hey, at least I tried!')

Sunday, November 08, 2009

I Have Skills

Don't look at the timestamp on this post. Tomorrow (today?) is going to be absolutely miserable. So much for getting to bed earlier. I'm getting later by the day. And this post totally ended up all stream-of-conscious, which I guess is to be expected, given the time.

My kids had wanted to go to Crap-Mart Wal-Mart to waste spend their allowance, and I decided that if they had the Napoleon Dynamite DVD for under $10, I would buy it. They did have it, for $9. But then I had the brilliant idea of buying 2 workout DVDs too. Remember how I said I have had my Netflix DVDs sitting on my shelf for ELEVEN MONTHS? I finally bit the bullet and bought the 30-Day Shred and a TaeBo workout so that I could finally send those stupid DVDs back guilt free. So I spent $30 on DVDs, which is a big splurge for me, and really not what I should be spending my money on right now. But at least Netflix and I are back together again.

However, I realized I have failed my kids. The front of the Napoleon Dynamite DVD case says 'Vote for Pedro'. OldestSon looked at it and said "Who is Pedro?" I couldn't believe he didn't know. Obviously I've failed them -- they should have Napoleon Dynamite memorized. Actually, that's the exact reason I haven't bought it until now. There are way too many names in the movie that I knew my kids would pick up on if they watched it a lot. Like "Tina, you fat lard" for instance. So it might have to remain an 'adult' movie.

Can you tell I'm writing this at 3:30 am?

Oh yeah, the main purpose of this post. Earlier, my kids watched Pearl Harbor (which also has a whole slew of fun words for them to copy). I've read reviews that said it is a terrible movie, but I love it. It has Ben Affleck for one thing. And Kate Beckinsale. And the Goose guy is really funny. It really hits me emotionally too. I thought it was very well done and captured some of the emotion you feel when thinking of our soldiers being attacked. But then I thought of the atomic bombs. I showed OldestSon some pictures of what Hiroshima and Nagasaki and some of the survivors looked like after the atomic bombs. Sitting there thinking, I just couldn't believe that humans have used nuclear weapons against other humans. It really is incomprehensible. 220,000 or more people, mostly civilians, died. That number is also incomprehensible to me. That's like half the people in my metropolitan area dying. And to think of the effects of radiation sickness? I don't even want to go there. I've studied that some in the past (like in high school), and I didn't even look it up today.

I was thinking that I'd like to study World War II and Pearl Harbor and the atomic bombs in a lot more detail. Then I thought, no, I really don't want to study that. I don't want to understand where they were coming from. I don't want to understand why all the countries involved thought they had to kill thousands or millions of people. I read on Wikipedia that US and Japanese officials both still agree that the atomic bombs were necessary. Some say that if the atomic bombs hadn't been used, Japan would have been invaded, which would have caused greater loss of life. I have no idea what's true. The whole idea of war is just ridiculous. We really think that whichever side kills the most people or causes the most damage is the winner? Again - it's almost incomprehensible. I get that we need to defend freedom, but I wonder how often wars are truly fought for freedom. How much more often is it for monetary gain by the ones in power? I don't think we can ever know what they were thinking until we die. So, yeah, I'd like to study these wars and see what all the reasons were. But on the other hand, I don't even want to know what kind of things go through our leaders' heads when they decide to bomb and kill for what they feel is the greater good.

Oh yeah (again) -- the reason I titled this post as I did is because when I was reading about the atomic bombs, I came across a sweet publication called Nuclear War Survival Skills. Sounds like a must read to me! The word 'skills' in the title got me thinking of Napoleon Dynamite, which is why I related that story first.

Saturday, November 07, 2009

NaBloPoMoing It

Did you notice that I've been posting every day? I decided to try NaBloPoMo this month. I did it in 2006. I was going to try in 2007, but on November 2nd I forgot to post, so that ended that. In 2008 I forged on despite being sick and having to use a Blackberry to post while in Washington, D.C. for my sister's wedding (I have no idea how people type on those things). But then I missed a day and didn't realize it. So that was over. I figured I'd give it a go this year. I think I'll donate a prize, if I can think of something awesome. Or maybe I'll donate something really dumb as a white elephant sort of prize.

The other night I had another weird dream. I was driving on the freeway and there were some parachuters in the sky. A yellow parachute had a hole blown through it and it was trailing black smoke and falling fast. I saw the person hit the ground right off to the side of the freeway, and no one was stopping. I didn't want to stop; I wasn't sure I could handle the gore*. But no one else was doing anything, so I stopped. Off to the side of the freeway there were jagged lava rocks covering everything, including where the parachuter had landed. I went over to her. She was completely covered by her parachute. I took a deep breath, pulled back the parachute. . . and she was fine. No blood, no gore. She was disoriented and upset, but not seriously injured. I think I stayed with her and kept her talking, but I don't remember what else happened after that.

Interpretation?

*When I was in high school, I thought I wanted to be a doctor or medical professional of some sort. I ended up deciding on being a veterinarian. I took a health occupations class and was not bothered at all by the blood/guts they showed us on slides and stuff. My football-player boyfriend passed out during a presentation once, but I was totally fine. I took a summer course at BYU and got to see a cadaver. That was awesome, and I was totally fine.

The first sign of trouble was when I went to a veterinarian's office to observe for a day and passed out. They weren't even doing anything gross! There was a dog with pneumothorax, and they had a tube going into the chest to draw out the air, but that wasn't gross. Maybe it was the medical smells that did me in. Now that I have kids my tolerance for blood/guts is a lot lower, so I guess it's a good thing I didn't go that route. Or maybe I would have just gotten over it.

Friday, November 06, 2009

Why People are Frightened by Nourishing Traditions

Nourishing Traditions is a cookbook/diet (way of eating, not weight-loss diet) book by Sally Fallon and Mary Enig. Some people are scared off by some of the recipes in it, this likely being one of them:

Fermented Fish Sauce

(I'm scared of the copyright, so I'll just tell you the ingredients)


small fish, including heads, cut up
sea salt
filtered water
garlic
bay leaves
peppercorns
lemon rind
tamarind paste
whey

You put the fish and salt in a jar and press it down with a pounder/hammer. Put the rest of the ingredients over it, plus enough water to cover. Cover the jar tightly and leave it out for 3 days. Then leave it in the fridge for several weeks. Then you strain the liquid and store the sauce in the fridge.

Doesn't that sound appetizing?! I think it actually sounds like a good idea to make this frequently. I mean, think of all the possibilities. An annoying visitor/relative comes to see you? Just ask if they'd like some fermented fish heads and I bet they'll be gone in an instant! A burglar tries to steal something? Open the jar and throw it on him and he'll be gone too!

Now, I shouldn't be so rude -- I haven't actually tried this recipe. It probably tastes great. I bought some Thai Kitchen brand fish sauce for a recipe. It is the most vile-smelling thing I have ever smelled. It smells SO gross. I can't remember which recipe I bought it for, but I think that I should have reduced the amount or left it out. I also have Thai Kitchen green curry paste. The coconut curry recipe on the back calls for the paste, fish sauce, and brown sugar. I tried the full amount of the fish sauce in the curry, and it tasted fine. But I'm still scared to leave fish heads in a jar on my counter for 3 days. I can only imagine what the kids would do with it if they found it. The house would smell for weeks.

Thursday, November 05, 2009

More Beauty



This is a tree that I am privileged to see every day when I leave work. It is stunning in the spring when bursting with white blossoms, gorgeous in summer when verdant and full, flamboyantly beautiful in fall when it's a fiery rainbow, and dazzling in winter when covered with snow and ice. I keep meaning to take pictures of it every season and make a montage. I know I've got fall covered, but I'm not sure which other pictures I've taken of it. This picture is 2 years old, but it looks very similar right now. I will try to get a new picture of it tomorrow to compare to.

This post brought to you by Thesaurus.com. Not really, they didn't pay/sponsor me or anything.

Wednesday, November 04, 2009

Hmmm

We have a calendar that's been on June for 5 months. Today my mom turned it over to November, and guess what the picture was? Three rainbows!!!

Complaining Again, Oops!

If I write my complaints in really small letters, does it count as complaining? I'm trying to think positively, but some things still really get to me. OK, I can't help myself -- I'm going for it. I am very grateful to have a refrigerator, but I really hate the way ours works. It drips water inside. I have a plastic jar that sits under the drip to catch the water. I would say it drips about a quart every week or two. This begs the question -- where is the water coming from? The fridge is not hooked up to a water line. Do refrigerators remove humidity from the air? I have no idea. Nevertheless, every week a quart or so of water appears. When I complained to management, they told me this is just how this brand of fridges are. The dripped water freezes into pretty layers in the jar. If I forget to empty the jar (by running it under hot water until the ice starts to melt and slides out), the water collects in the bottom of the fridge until you open the door, at which point it falls out onto the floor and gets tracked all over the kitchen.

Also, the fridge freezes everything, unless it is perched on the very front edge of the shelves or in the door. When I first noticed it was freezing things, I turned the temperature up (duh). Which led to the freezer thawing. I try to pay attention to which foods I don't want to freeze (sour cream and eggs are the two biggest concerns), and try to always keep those right at the front. It's kind of difficult to keep EVERYTHING at the front though. Inevitably something will end up getting shoved back, and then I'll decide to make fried eggs for breakfast, and will pull out the eggs only to be greeted by a box of frozen and/or exploded eggs. I really, really hate that. Fortunately most foods can be used after being frozen, even if it wasn't the way I originally intended. Sour cream can be used in a heated meal like stroganoff, instead of as a topping. Greens can be used in smoothies. Eggs can be thawed and used in anything, even as fried eggs, but they're not exactly the same. The one thing that cannot be rescued after being frozen is hard boiled eggs. They are destroyed when they are frozen. All the water comes out of the egg white and collects in between the white and the shell. When you shell the egg, you get a layer of ice, with the destroyed egg underneath. Here is a picture of a shelled frozen hard boiled egg from December 2007 (I don't know why the camera timestamp says 2006).




OK, as penance for all my complaining, I will share something really funny. I don't remember if I've posted this here before. This has nothing to do with taste in music -- it is just hilarious. They've taken a music video (Total Eclipse of the Heart, in this case) and changed the words to describe what is happening in the video. They've got a whole series of them, but this one is my favorite. It was hard to pick just two, but my favorite lines are "Emo Kid is throwing Slo-Mo Dove in my face. I guess that means that he just flipped me the bird." and "I walk on to a terrace where I think I'm alone, but Arthur Fonzarelli's got an army of clones."

Tuesday, November 03, 2009

Sunshine and Rainbows

Man, I've been all sunshine and rainbows lately, ha ha. It seems like everything I encountered yesterday was meant to tear me down or test me to see if I could withstand it. You saw my post about the LDS Gems quote I got. Then I opened my email and Carol Tuttle (who is supposed to be inspirational) asks me, "Are Your Limiting Beliefs About Money Ruining Your Life and Your Children's?" Why yes, Carol, they are! Thanks for asking!! So nice to hear from you ♥ The day got worse from there.

Anyway, I decided that I've turned into one of those friends who always has to be focused on their own tragedy and sorrow when you try to talk to them or help them. I know I've fallen into the victim role over the last 3 years. Now I just need to figure out how to get away from all that.

To start with I will share some of the world's beauty -- a real rainbow!!



We saw this rainbow a couple of weeks ago. It was an absolutely gorgeous double rainbow. You could see the entirety of both rainbows. I LOVE rainbows, real ones, as well as anything in rainbow colors. I could stare at a real rainbow for hours. They are fantastically gorgeous and magical. Of course I've studied (meaning I briefly stared at the webpage then closed it without actually attempting to understand it) the science of why rainbows appear, but looking at all those angles and rays? Naah, it's just magic!!

The kicker is that this was repeated for us last week. We walked out of the daycare and were greeted by an even more brilliant double rainbow. I don't even know when was the last time I saw a rainbow, and then to see two double rainbows in two weeks?! Wow! I wish I could bottle up a real rainbow and keep it in my backyard (if I had a backyard).

Speaking of rainbows, you have to see these pictures.

Happy rainbow hair!


Wisely Chosen is my hair idol. I found her photos about a year ago. I think I had googled 'wild long curly hair'. As you all know (ad nauseum), I want really long hair like Dawn's. The first picture I saw of her was with nearly regular colored hair, or at least I didn't notice that it was colored. She already would have been my hair idol because of the length and beautiful curl, but when I saw her rainbow hair, her hair idol status was forever guaranteed!

I don't know the laws of Flickr, so I'm not going to put a picture in here, but you've really got to check it out. Dawn gave me permission to post these pictures! Check out her Flickr photostream for tons more. I promise you will be amazed, shocked, or something similar. At first I thought that her hair must be Photoshopped, but if so, she must spend hundreds of hours on Photoshop and have amazing skills at making it look realistic. By which I mean that it's not Photoshopped!

I Have A Big Pink Bush

Force of nature

It's hot outside again


I can't figure out my real personality. When I see Dawn's rainbow hair, something inside me says "YES! That is perfect! That is totally me! I want that!" But in real life, the most dramatic thing I've EVER done to my hair was a henna gloss, and since henna is RED and my hair is REDDISH, yeah, no one even noticed. So maybe THAT is my true personality and I just like to imagine that the rainbow me is the real me. Whatever. Rainbows and rainbow hair forever!

Oh, I forgot to mention -- if I ever get my own world, everyone is getting rainbow hair by default. I haven't decided if everything (trees, grass, animals) will be rainbow -- that might be visual overkill. But at least the hair will be rainbow.

Sunday, November 01, 2009

Post-Halloween Hilarity

YoungestSon was absolutely hilarious today. I stayed up violently late last night, so I was trying to sleep in this morning. MiddleSon and OldestSon keep YoungestSon safe and happy, but they don't prevent him from making messes or from making bad nutritional choices. Eventually, YoungestSon came back to the bed and asked for snackies (nursing). I said no, that the snackies were closed. I told him to cuddle with me instead. He cuddled with me for 2 seconds and then said "Snackies now?" I said no, and he cuddled 2 seconds longer. Then "Snackies now?!?!" 2 more seconds of cuddling, and "Snackies now??????!?!!!!?"

Then he started pretending to bite me and he was saying "Pizza! Chicken!" Then he was making really funny faces and rolling his eyes back and stuff. It was really hilarious; I guess you had to be there. It turns out that all three of them had pretty much eaten all of their halloween candy by the time I got up. It looked like someone blew up a Hershey's factory in our living room.

Saturday, October 31, 2009

Google It!

Periodically I check my Google Analytics to see what people are Googling to find my blog. The consistent top performers are Texadelphia Mustard Blend and Brad Paisley. I took all the Google searches that led people to my blog in the last 30 days and commented on them. I tried several colors out to highlight the search terms and settled on blue. Halfway through I realized that was a really dumb choice, since the default color for most links is blue. Oh well, I'm not changing it now.

"shaken faith syndrome" - yep, I have it

brad paisley 2009 stage - There were lights, and, um, places for the band to stand on up high, a lot of paint, and um, some digital displays, and, um, hey, what's that shiny thing over there?

Here's a picture that shows the stage:


brad paisley bobblehead - they sell these? Oh yeah, it was part of the scrapbook on the digital display. Like this, in the lower left corner:



brad paisley concert 2009 - AWESOME. Maybe someday I'll write a review. Ha.

green smoothies for beginners - spinach, pineapple, and banana. You could even do lettuce instead of spinach. Add an avocado for good fat and creaminess.

katies word - I wrote more than one word.

"almonds" - I'm selling them until next Friday.

"danica anerson" - Who on earth is that? OK, I googled it, and it's one of the kids in the Brad Paisley articles I pasted here.

"it's a daddy thing" - "Cleaning This Gun" is a great song; one of my favorites!

"marty+robbins" matilda - I don't think I've ever written about this song. But in a 2006 post, I shared my list of artists in my music library, which includes Marty Robbins, and I also mentioned listening to Matilda by John Williamson (the Australian folk singer)

"rod smith" green polk dot box - I am pretty sure he's a good guy. I trust him.

25 lb bag of chia seed - I am selling this too. I would encourage you to buy it. Think of how many chia pets you could make!

back to the future swearing - Oh yes. This is where my kids learned to swear.


bajio mexican grill calories - A lot? I think I've been there once. It still can't beat Don Carlos in Houston.

basic beginner green smoothie - spinach

beginners green smoothies - and pineapple

big green polka dot box - Great company. I think they're going to hit it big.

bob lonsberry - Completely loony.

brad paisley american concert what songs - I am sure I missed some, but I took videos of many of the songs he sang, including these:
Start a Band
American Saturday Night
Mud on the Tires
Wrapped Around
Celebrity
Waiting on a Woman
Water
I'm Still a Guy
Catch All the Fish
I'm Gonna Miss Her
She's Everything
The World
Letter to Me
When I Get Where I'm Going
Feel Like Making Love (cover of Bad Company's song)
Ticks
Online
Then
Welcome to the Future
Alcohol

brad paisley bobble head - I want one now.

brad paisley camp for kids - If so, he is even more awesome.

brad paisley concert line up song - See above.

brad paisley concert people with funny hats - Yep, these people were right in front of me:


brad paisley concert review 2009 - I forgot to do mine, didn't I?

brad paisley concert song line up 2009 - see above

brad paisley concert song line-up - see above

brad paisley concert supposed to end at the amphitheater - It ended at 10:55 pm.

brad paisley concert tour 2009 songs - see above

brad paisley concert what songs he is playing - see above

brad paisley concert with funny hats - yes

brad paisley concerts how long are they - Ours started at 7:30, with Jimmy Wayne and Dierks Bentley up first. Brad Paisley came out at 9:10 and played until 10:55.

brad paisley songs he sung at his 2009 concert - See above

brad paisleys blue jeans - OH. YES. Very nice. I never figured out what brand they were though, sorry. Not that I looked, of course. I'm a good girl (snicker). He had paint on his jeans; did you notice? And he doesn't wear them as tight as Rodney Atkins; bonus! I did notice the nice stitching on the back pockets of the ones he wore at our concert. Of course I was looking at the stitching, what did you think?!!? Here's a partial jeans shot. I have a video that shows them a lot better, but I'm not messing with videos tonight.


can't figure out my love language - keep Googling; I don't have time to explain it now. Do it now though, before your relationship goes down the tubes due to lack of communication.

chia seeds lasts how long in storage - hmm, my friend Robyn says "Chia is a wonderful food for storage, because its crunchy exterior protects it from oxidation and keeps years without rancidity. Buy up to a five-year supply, and keep it in a cool place if possible. (Vacuum sealing it with a Food Saver in quart jars is a good way to keep it on the shelf for years.)"

concert rain wet - I didn't get very wet because I brought my BYU sweatshirt. Brad Paisley got soaked. I would recommend bringing a sweatshirt. But if it's going to get really wet and dirty from the acid rain/smoke in the air, maybe you should bring a University of Utah sweatshirt instead. If not the U, then bring University of Texas.

cooking for families cheap - I recommend a lot of grains and vegetables. Not processed foods. It's surprising how much you can save if you cut out all the candy/junk.

cuddling hold hands falling asleep - Awwww, sweet! I think I would LOVE this, but I'm not sure. I like my space too.

dreadlocks - You should definitely do them. You would look good in them.

elder oaks - Yeah, he's got a lot of supporters and detractors right now.

elder oaks talk on bob lonsberry - Oh dear. Did this really happen? One thing I didn't like about Mr. Lonsberry is how every day was like an LDS church lesson. And then after the Utah show was over, he would do his local New York show, wherein he would make frequent comments about big breasts. Loser.

foamy green smoothie - if mine gets foamy, what do I do. . . . . hmmm. I can't remember. Maybe wait for it to settle, and then stir it gently if it separates.

foamy smoothie - see above

foodsaver - Tupperware?

green polka dot box - definitely do it

green polka dot grocery - you should go for it. Using my referral link.

green smoothies beginner - pineapple

green smoothies for a newbie? - and spinach

how to show the love language physical touch - YES! Something I am an expert on! Let's assume you're talking about a woman. Touch her whenever you walk past. If she's not 'in the mood', keep it on the shoulders, arms, face, or hair. If she is in the mood, grope away! Give her a hug and kiss whenever you leave or get home. Make it into a dramatic kiss if you really want to knock her socks off. Make out a lot. Hold hands whenever you get the chance. Play footsie. Cuddle to watch movies. Lots of sex. Play with her hair. Stroke her face. Hold her. Help her out of the car. Open doors for her and touch her on the back as she goes through. Cuddle while she falls asleep. Is it getting hot in here?

im a tough and suppress my feelings - Yeah, me too. My counselor recommended finding a safe, quiet place, and setting aside time to allow yourself to feel. Start writing what you're going through if you need help getting started. Good luck with that. My counselor recommended I do this about 6 weeks ago -- I have been putting it off.

katie words - yes

love languages of a female - could be any of them

men's touch to show love - From what I hear about men in general, probably there will be a lot of groping involved. Woot!!! If there's too much groping for your tastes, refer your man to my answer about physical touch above. Here's a couple fun facts: Oxytocin is the hormone that bonds you to someone when your body releases it. Women release oxytocin when they are touched. Men release it at orgasm.

nick vujicic orthodox church - is he orthodox? I wasn't sure. Actually, I don't even know what that means.

nick vujicic's doctrine - Evangelical, definitely. Love everyone. Keep your chin up.

people who speak different love languages are not compatible - I don't know if I would go that far, but I'd say it can be VERY HARD for people to learn other love languages sometimes. I would recommend learning to do it while you're in the early stages of the relationship so that you're not fighting an uphill battle later.

polka dot box utah - Yes, do it! Use my referral link!

raw egg in green smoothie - I would do it (unless you're vegan obviously), and to be extra safe, I would use pasture-farmed eggs from a local farmer you trust.

rod smith green polka - He has answered my emails personally. Seems like a great CEO.

song line up at brad paisley concert 2009 - see above

texadelphia mustard blend ingredients - The ingredients to make it yourself are said to be mayonnaise, yellow mustard, Gulden's spicy mustard, Kikkoman Teriyaki sauce, honey, and water

texadelphia mustard recipe - I haven't ever tried to figure it out! In fact, it's been over 3 years since I've had Texadelphia (SAD), so I don't even remember what it's supposed to taste like.

texadelphia queso recipe - I don't know about Texadelphia, but Don Carlos's queso is approximated by Velveeta + milk + jalapenos. So simple and so processed/fake, but tastes pretty close.

texadelphia queso recipe houston - Send me some, will you? How about a regular beef (NOT with extra meat) with 3 mustard sauces? Here's a lovely picture of a Texadelphia cheesesteak with mustard blend. But I don't get jalapeños on mine.

then powertab brad paisley - If you play 'Then' for me on your guitar and really mean it, I will totally marry you.

veterinary school - I wouldn't recommend it if you don't like animals or get sick around blood/guts.

what is the song paisley sings infront of guitar hero? - Crap, I can't think of it right now. . . . I'll have to get back to you. Oh yeah, it's CELEBRITY.

who is in brad paisleys guitar hero video - The old guy with the sweet jackets is Little Jimmy Dickens! I'm fairly certain that everyone in the video is a guitar master, which is what makes it so funny.

who many words can be spelled with kate - Assuming you mean 'how' many, then I find these: a, at, ate, eat, take, tea, & teak

Wow, this was a huge, mostly pointless waste of time. I wonder if it will cause a paradox, because people will google these terms, which will lead to a post about googling, and then the Space-Time continuum will blow up.

Friday, October 30, 2009

Ew

Remember how I said I learned to cook from a recipe book my sister put together for me? One of the recipes she included was for Beef Stroganoff. It has ended up being one of my favorites. It requires 1 pound sirloin steak and 1/2 pound mushrooms. Over the last couple years I've made the stroganoff with extra mushrooms instead of beef.

Yesterday we went shopping, and I decided that since I've been feeding my kids somewhat crappily (fairly whole foods, but certainly not well-rounded), maybe they should have some beef in their diet. So I bought some ground beef.

Remembering how much I used to love ground beef, I decided to put 1/2 pound in the stroganoff. I am eating leftovers for lunch now, and ew, it is so gross. The stroganoff is too delicious to be ruined by the beef, but it certainly is not adding anything. Every time I bite into a chunk, it's just gross. It has this completely flavorless, too-chewy texture. It might be just the texture that's bothering me. If I used sirloin and cook it gently as the recipe calls for, maybe I'd love it.

Anyway, I just thought that was interesting. I haven't been meat free by any means, but I've had a lot less recently than usual. Maybe my tastes are changing. Although, knowing that my kids refuse to eat the completely mild and non-offensive stroganoff, I made spaghetti for them. I put ground beef in Prego sauce, and wow, it was about 1000 times better than usual. BUT that could have been because it was getting so late and I was STARVING when I tried it. Being starving certainly adds a great appeal to most dishes. Maybe I should challenge my hypothesis with a nice filet mignon!


Here's the stroganoff recipe, as I make it. And after writing this down, I realize I'm not that great at writing recipes. You should be able to follow it easily if you're an experienced cook, but if you're a beginner, sorry :-D

Beef Stroganoff
Makes a lot. For me anyway, since I am the only one who eats it.

Start making some brown rice (I use a covered glass casserole dish and use a ratio of 1 C rice to 2.5 C water and cook it in the microwave on full power for 40 minutes)

Chop 1/2-1 onion and several cloves garlic and sauté in butter or oil. (Sometimes I leave the garlic cloves whole and then fish them out and smash them or put them through a garlic press after the sautéing. The difference is that the first way browns it, the second way doesn't.)

While the onion is sautéing, chop 1 - 1-1/2 pounds mushrooms into large chunks. Sauté mushrooms until they are as tender as you like.

Blend 1/4 cup flour with 1-1/2 cups milk. Add to mushroom/onions and stir/cook over medium heat until thickened.

Add 1 teaspoon paprika, 3/4 teaspoon salt, and about 1/2 teaspoon pepper.

Take off heat and add 1 cup sour cream. Add more milk if it is too thick.

Serve over rice. A lot of the flavor comes from the mushrooms, so pick a variety you like! I assume that if you have high-quality paprika you'd get more flavor from that. Mine is cheap, so it doesn't change the flavor too much.

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Little Cans of Tuna

You probably thought that title was a metaphor or something. Ha! It's not. When I was a kid, my mom would make tuna fish sandwiches for two adults and two kids using only one can of tuna fish. We would eat them with chips for lunch on Saturdays. When I make tuna fish sandwiches now, I add onions and chopped Bubbie's naturally fermented dill* pickles. Even with the extra onion/pickle volume, I typically only get ONE sandwich out of it. I can't quite fit ALL of it on my bread, but it's usually only a few spoonfuls left over, and I eat it plain, before I eat my sandwich. I don't usually eat anything along with the sandwich. So what's up? Has everyone's appetite grown since the mid-80s? Are cans of tuna significantly smaller? Do I have an unusually hearty appetite?

*Thinking of dill reminded me that I left a bunch of red peppers and dill in the dehydrator a couple days ago. Oops. Fortunately we're in the desert and it's winter with forced air heating, so the air in the house is about as dry as. . . as dry as. . . (nothing's coming to me). . . as dry as something really really dry!

Sunday, October 25, 2009

Darn

I was going to try to torture you with Brad Paisley videos, but embedding is disabled. I guess to really torture you, I'd have to figure out a way to MAKE you listen, so whatever. Brad Paisley has lots of songs about lust, but he's also got plenty about mature love. I realize popular songs aren't necessarily reflective of reality, but still, the message of this song is so precious. The video's great because the intro is funny, it's got Andy Griffith, and it's got THE GOATEE!! Special thanks to Kim, Brad Paisley's wife, for sharing him and his goatee with the world.

Waitin' On a Woman

Friday, October 23, 2009

One More Try

OK, OK, I get it - you guys just can't appreciate good music!

How about this? Someone's got to think this is awesome -->



Greg Simpson was my seminary teacher once upon a time. As far as I knew, everyone at my school loved him as a teacher. I definitely did. Plus he was hot and awesome; that sure didn't hurt ;-) He taught us the names of the Twelve Apostles to the music of Journey's Faithfully. He said that he wanted us to think of 'the Brethren' when we were dancing too close at the dances, ha ha!! I also remember him admonishing us for calling him "Brother Simpson" at his concerts. I think he may have also made us try kim-chi (he went on a mission to Korea). Eventually he abandoned our school and defected to Bonneville High School.

When I got to BYU, I found out that one of my floormates went to Bonneville. She said they all thought Brother Simpson was gay and they weren't all that impressed with him! The main reason she gave for thinking he was gay was that he wore vests. At Northridge, that meant he was super sharp. I guess BHS students just don't know how to identify a well-dressed guy!

According to the Youtube comments on the video up there, Brother Simpson is a bishop now. Sweet - he can sing if the talks get too boring. When we lived in Sandy, one of the counselors in our bishopric had shoulder length curly hair and a sweet beard. He was also a musician and is credited on The Singles Ward (I think). Maybe they should get together and form the Bishopric Band!

Thursday, October 22, 2009

Appreciation

I have a big exam tomorrow and I'm pretty much freaking out. So I thought I'd post some good songs to calm me down.

Now, I feel like you guys aren't properly appreciating the music that I post here. That has got to change! Bon Jovi, Rodney Atkins, Oldies. . . . how can you NOT like that stuff?!

This song is great -- it even has sweet hippie girls dancing in the video. This remains one of my favorite songs of all time.



I can't embed this one, but you have GOT to click on it at least for a second and check out:
- a guy apparently wearing a garbage bag (at the beginning, left side)
- some sweet hippie glasses (0:21)
- the worst lip-syncing and instrument-syncing ever (the entire thing)
- some of the worst haircuts ever (entire thing)

The Byrds on Ed Sullivan

Actually, I wish I could go back and 'un-see' this. I was listening to this song today because I was getting nervous and it is one of my all time best 'calming' songs. I've listened to Oldies music since I was a kid, and I never knew what the Byrds looked like. So I looked the song up on YouTube and found this video. I think I was better off not knowing what they looked like, ha ha!

Now that I'm all calmed down it't time to listen to Rodney Atkins to get me in the mood to get everything ready for tomorrow!



Now tell me how anyone can dislike this song. Really! OK, I guess if you're opposed to drinking, smoking, guns, and Rodney's too-tight jeans, I GUESS I could see your objections. But other than that. . . !? It's down-home America! I love it!

If I haven't convinced you how awesome Rodney Atkins is, try this song. Seriously, watch it. Now.



There's nothing objectionable in this one except it's got McDonald's and distracted driving, camouflage pants, and unhelmeted four-wheeling. And that's Rodney Atkins' real son in the video!! How cute is that?

Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Pay Attention!

I get a Monday Motivating Moment in my email every week. The story this week is one you've probably heard before, but a good reminder nonetheless. I've copied the entire thing, headers/footers and all, so as not to run into copyright issues:


Monday Motivating Moment
October 19, 2009
Your Weekly Attitude Booster

"Awareness"

It is not unusual for us to get so caught up in meeting our needs, desires, and goals that we lose sight of what is happening around us. From time to time, we may be stopped in our tracks by some unusual event that will cause us to pay attention to what is important. Those lessons can cause "dents" as happened in the following story.

A young and successful executive was traveling down a neighborhood street going a bit too fast in his new Jaguar. He was watching as kids darted out from between parked cars and slowed down when he thought he saw something.

As his car passed, no children appeared. Instead, a brick smashed into the Jag's side door! He slammed on the brakes and spun the Jag back to the spot where the brick had been thrown. He jumped out of the car, grabbed the kid who was standing there and pushed him against a parked car shouting, "What do you think you are doing?"

Building up a head of steam he went on, "That is a new car and the dent from the brick you threw is going to cost a lot of money to repair. Why did you do it?"

"Please sir, please. I'm sorry, I didn't know what else to do," pleaded the youngster. "I threw the brick because no one else would stop..."

Tears were dripping down the boy's chin as he pointed around the parked car. "It's my brother, sir," he said. "He rolled off the curb and fell out of his wheelchair and I can't lift him."

Sobbing, the boy asked the executive, "Would you please help me get him back into his wheelchair, sir? He's hurt and he's too heavy for me."

Moved beyond words, the driver tried to swallow the rapidly swelling lump in his throat. He lifted the young man back into the wheelchair and took out his handkerchief and wiped the scrapes and cuts, checking to see that everything was going to be okay.

"Thank you and may God bless you, sir," the grateful child said to him. The man then watched the little boy push his brother toward their home. It was a long walk back to his Jaguar... a long, slow walk. He never did repair the car door. He kept the dent to remind him not to go through life so fast that someone has to throw a brick at you to get your attention.

Author Unknown

Everyday, we have the opportunity to be aware of what is going on around us and to notice who might need our assistance or attention. When we are so focused on ourselves or getting where we are going, it may take a brick to get our attention.

Let's slow down and truly "see" what is around us. How many "dents" do we need before we make it a habit to "stop, look, listen, feel and care?"


Affirmation for the Week:
“I maintain awareness and vigilance in my life. I need only a feather to tickle me, not a brick to dent me, to bring my awareness back to the moment when my attention and focus strays.”


Have an observant week!

Mary Rau-Foster, mary@workplaceissues.com

Copyright 2009 by Mary Rau-Foster. All rights reserved.
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