Wednesday, December 30, 2009
Monday, December 28, 2009
Friday, December 25, 2009
Thursday, December 24, 2009
I found the book lovely and interesting. However, that being said... how dare you introduce me to such a book? I loved it loved it loved it and it is all your fault. Why is this bad, you might ask? I loved it so much that I was sad to see it end. I loved it so much that now I wonder what I am going to do; I do not have a book to read. I was thinking, I could read some other book that I have in my library... well guess what? I do not think I have a book that can top this one. This book made me want to join a book club just to talk about this book about a book club! I never thought I would find the German Occupation a treat.
Here is what I loved about this book: I found the characters charming and the story engaging. Juliet was funny, Sidney was charming, Dawsey was my little knight in shining armor, Isola and Kit I wanted as part of my family, and dear dear Elizabeth… where do I start on Elizabeth? I was in the dentist chair reading this book when I found out about Elizabeth and actually dropped the book. I was so in love with this book I actually mourn it being done… and now I blame you because it is done and I do not feel you fully prepared me for just how great it actually was... just kidding Jules. Thank you so much for the recommendation of this book. I want to read it again, right now. It was a great way to spend a Christmas Eve afternoon!
So to be fair to those I might have given this book to for Christmas, I warn you just how wonderful this book is. You might laugh, you might cry, you might not want it to be done. You might hate it, I doubt you will, but you might. I might be overselling how much I loved this book, but I doubt it. Out of 5 stars, I give this one a 10! I loved this book!!
Heart Y-TOM Jules, Heart Y-TOM!!!
Wednesday, December 23, 2009
Friday, December 18, 2009
Thursday, December 17, 2009
Wednesday, December 16, 2009
Tuesday, December 15, 2009
It has a lovely body, with legs so short and thin.
My dreidel's always playful. It loves to dance and spin.
I have a little dreidel. I made it out of clay.
Monday, December 14, 2009
Sunday, December 13, 2009
Saturday, December 12, 2009
Friday, December 11, 2009
Friday, December 4, 2009
I also have two dear friends that share a birthday with Mom, so I need to wish them a Happy Birthday too!
It also is my Grandpa Parker's birthday and I shouted a Happy Birthday as I passed the cemetary this morning.
Wednesday, December 2, 2009
Monday, November 23, 2009
Stephanie Maag will have her cute Story Book Beginning merchandise as well. Her little girl fairy wings and wands melt my heart. She also will have homemade headbands, flowers, and hats.
Friday, November 20, 2009
This may come as a shock to some, but I am not a Twilight fan. Yes I did read all 4 books, yes I did see the first movie so I have a total grasp of the story and characters. No I will not see the second, third or fourth movies, no I am not on team Jacob, no I am not on team Edward, I do not drive like a Cullen, I think the name Renesmee was a really weak mash up of names, I do not go gaga over Bella’s brooding behavior, I preferred Cedric Diggory over Edward, yes I think Robert Pattinson needs a hair cut… oh I could go on and on. (Sister can I get a shout out for the nice alliteration there though?)
In short I am not a twihard… let’s face it, I am not even a twisoft. I saw a bit on the news this morning where a woman was so excited for this show she slept out in line for a week to be the first in the theater to see the show then she was so excited about it all she nearly fainted and almost missed the whole thing. Really? Like when the Beatles came to America? Have you not heard of assigned seating in the movie theaters now?
So you might be wondering why I read all 4 books if I am not a fan. I just kept hoping it would get better. I was actually angry during the entire read of book 4, and sorely disappointed with the anti-climactic ending. If I had a daughter in her teens I would not let her read this series. Sure there were good underlying messages: stay in school and do not have sex before you are married. However to not have sex before you are married because your vampire boyfriend is old fashioned is a little off the mark!
Yes I know it is fiction and there is no such thing as vampires who sparkle in the sun (as we all learned from Buffy real vampires turn to dust), but oh my Hannah Montana! I tell you what if people could be as excited about the inner workings of US Legislation as they get for fun things like Twilight and the aforementioned Hannah Montana craze… wait let me get a visual… people camping out for weeks before the passing of a new health care reform bill; getting so excited to vote in November that they almost faint. (ok that made me chuckle…)
I am just admitting for the entire world (or at least the tens of people who read this blog): I am not a fan of Twilight. Have I offended anyone with my take on it all and my admission? If there is a twihard out there who reads this blog, set me straight on what is so great about Twilight. But as for me, not so much.
Now when is the new Harry Potter movie coming out?! mmm... child... now that is a series.
Tuesday, November 17, 2009
Family (n): a group of individuals living under one roof and usually under one head; a group of persons of common ancestry.
Anyone else find these definitions lacking? Family is much much more than this.
Family is knowing you can count on the people you need the most when you need them the most.
Family is sacrificing a week with your spouse to help remodel your parent’s home.
Family is knowing when your sister is joking when her comeback to everything is “So’s your face.”
Family is cooking dinner every night for your sister’s family who is remodeling their house.
Family is doing something wrong, saying you’re sorry, and moving on.
Family is the sister who admits her daughter is super cute… because she looks just like her aunt.
Family is picking up a conversation with someone you have not seen in a long time as if you saw them yesterday.
Family is a smile.
Family is knowing you sometimes just need to cry.
Family is listening, and not judging.
Family is trying to fix the pain of someone else.
Family is your best friend’s mom who gives you an open invitation for Sunday dinner.
Family is unconditional love.
Family is being the one to step up and call your brother’s boss a bad word for laying him off.
Family is staying up all night with the sister who is going in for a sleep test the next day.
Family is being patient when you are asked to do something you do not want to do.
Family is knowing when to just sit and be quiet.
Family is noise.
Family is Saturday morning pancakes.
Family is understanding you are going to miss a 2nd birthday and Mother’s Day because you are going on a cruise.
Family is the helping hand when times get tough.
Family is putting a bow in your nephew’s hair just to see how your brother will react.
Family is a Democrat living in the home of a Republican.
Family is game night… all night.
Family is reading a book to the niece who likes to turn the pages before you are done.
Family is kisses, even the elephant ones.
Family is being honest enough to say “Yes that outfit does make you look fat.”
Family is acceptance.
Family is letting your wife’s best friend move in for a week because she is allergic to her house.
Family is never keeping track of whose turn it is to pay for dinner.
Family is singing at the top of your lungs with your sister in law to Mamma Mia.
Family is …
Sometimes your family includes biological and adopted people in equal balance. Family is much much more than a group of individuals who live under one roof or those who share a common ancestry.
And I have the best family ever!
Wednesday, November 11, 2009
Wednesday, November 4, 2009
A few days ago LoMo was at my house and she had spilled some milk on the floor, slipped on it and started to cry. What could I do but make a joke telling her there is no use crying over spilled milk (yes I know she is only 18 months and did not get it) but then I realized that the old adage is true. There really is no use crying over spilled milk; when bad things happen we really can look for and find the silver lining in situations. Getting upset or depressed does no one any good. Again, it is all in how we choose to react.
Everything happens… don’t say for a reason… no I am just saying that everything happens (shout out to Dr. Horrible.)
However that being said: if you know of any employment opportunities Barry was a manager/trainer/business analyst or Everett is one of those IT geeks we all know and love. If you know of anything let me know!
Monday, November 2, 2009
Then Saturday night most of the family headed down to Egypt for a party as Sister's house. I was totally going to take a pic of my costume, but before I could Mac spewed all over it. Anyway, I was Captain Hammer; Captain Hammer... Corporate Tool. Still do not know who that is? Visit Here.
Sunday we went down to Egypt again for Mac's baby blessing. Sister won contest soup with a lovely clam chowder killing my cheddar brocolli. I used to be the queen of soup... Mac of course was adorable and I had a blast playing with Sissy and LoMo and the Princesses. LB is also just learning to sit up, and loves to play with toys that make noise, so Christmas is going to be a lot of fun!!
This morning Sissy was at the house and her hair needed some help. So I helped... She is rocking that Who-Hair look!!
Tuesday, October 27, 2009
She also can be found on this Facebook Event page or can be reached at 801-722-9825.
This is a great deal because this price is so much less than a sitting fee and digital print usually are. Plus if you want other prints she has some great pricing on that too.
If you call tell her you know me! I am all about dropping names when I can!!
Monday, October 26, 2009
Friday, October 23, 2009
Something is not the same
I'm through with playing by the rules
Of someone else's game..."
"I'm through accepting limits
'Cause someone says they're so
Some things I cannot change
But 'till I try, I'll never know..."
Thursday, October 22, 2009
Tuesday, October 20, 2009
Thursday, October 15, 2009
I read a story today on CNN about a YouTube channel being started for Anne Frank. I have long been inspired by the Diary of Anne Frank, I love the movie, I remember being affected by reading the book when I was in middle school. Every time I read the book or watch the movie I come away with a heavy heart for the pain but I am also inspired by the hope of the message. The YouTube videos were wonderful. The link is below if you are interested in watching them too. There are many video links on the side of the Anne Frank Page. The one with Emma Thompson is quite humorous. I wish I understood the language spoken in the Miep Gies clip because I would think that would be an amazing story to understand.
Monday, October 12, 2009
Lesson 1 - Eat Less but Eat Enough
Our bodies need calories (energy) to survive. This is a fact that we all know. We must eat. The major no-no that most people who are trying to lose weight do is they cut back too much, too fast. The fact of the matter is our bodies need calories to survive. Without a proper intake of calories our bodies will hold on to the existing fat we already have stored. While it is important to eat less when one is trying to lose fat (weight) one must eat a healthy number of calories. Want to know what yours is? My best advice is to talk to your doctor. My doctor is going to give me a different number of intake than yours would give you. Have you ever had a conversation with a coworker who claims she is constantly riding her bike and you have to wonder to yourself “How is she still overweight then?” Then you hear what she eats during a typical day: a few cups of coffee for breakfast, a bag of 100 calories of popcorn for lunch, and she usually will eat a decent dinner. Well that is why she is still overweight; she is not eating enough.
Lesson 2 – Exercise More
It is math, plain and simple. However I suck at math… so it took me a long time to get it. Calories in/calories out. Exercising burns calories and when this happens, as long as you eat enough, your body should use excess fat stores to burn thus eventually helping weight loss and fat loss. Being active for 30 minutes a day will increase ones heart health and decrease ones pounds. This also makes a person stronger and more energetic.
Lesson 2 – Exercise More
Lesson 3 - It Takes Time
Looking back I know I did not get fat in a day, so why should I expect to get skinny in one?! It just does not work that way. It takes time to pack on the pounds, so conversely it takes time to take the weight off. While it might be easier for some people to lose weight faster than others, just remember the immortal words of wisdom from Galaxy Quest: “Never give up, never surrender.”
Lesson 4 - Celebrate the Milestones
There are going to be milestones in the weight loss process: When you lose your first pound, when you lose your first 10 pounds, when you can do 100 pushups, when you learn to love the elliptical, when you have a bad day and want to run instead of eating chocolate etc. These are moments to be celebrated. Share them with loved ones so they can give you validation and maybe gain some motivation. Now this celebration probably is not going to be the same way as one might have celebrated in the past with a chocolate chip cookie sundae or cheesecake!
Lesson 5 - Not All Weight Gain is a Setback
Have you ever heard that muscle weighs more than fat? Bull crap. A pound = a pound. A pound of bricks weighs the same as a pound of feathers: they both weigh a pound. However the mass will be different. I have to be honest I lose inches before I lose pounds. It can be discouraging when you step on the scale and do not see a loss, you might even see a gain. However, look at how your pants or shirts fit. Is the butt saggy? Are you in a new hole on your belt? Do you need to start wearing a belt? Here is my example: I am down 20 pounds but I have lost 3 pant sizes. I am down to the last hole in my belt; I am losing inches faster than I am losing weight. Sometimes, also, it is alright to hide your scale for a few days… or weeks! If you are obsessing about the scale it might be time to put it in the freezer (not literally like one might put a book in the freezer for you Friends fans.) Don’t give up if you gain a pound or 4, there is probably a reason like you are not drinking enough water or it might be (women) your time of the month or your body just gained.
Lesson 6 - Not All Fat is Bad
There are good fats and bad fats. While I am not an expert, some oils (fish, olive, canola) are better than others (vegetable, butter, etc). A healthy increase of good oils will increase your good cholesterol and hopefully decrease your bad cholesterol. Plus oils will add taste to dishes.
Lesson 7 - It is Okay to Splurge
It is alright to eat a piece of cheesecake at Elisha’s wedding. It is alright to share a bowl of ice cream with Sissy. It is alright to have a chocolate chip bar (or 3) on Barry’s birthday. It is alright to have dessert when you are out to dinner with your friends just because you want one. Depriving yourself of all luxuries is not a good idea. As long as you make a plan for these goodies and maybe eat a more healthy lunch on that day. As long as you do not tell yourself daily that a splurge is alright. It is called a splurge for a reason, do not overindulge. Plus cutting out all sweets will make you cranky just like cutting out all carbs will.
Lesson 8 - Not All Diets are Good
Let’s hear a shout out my overweight friends (and some skinny one too) is there a diet you have not tried? They usually sound so good! The concepts typically are the same “Pay us and we will teach you a fool proof way to lose weight.” Um, right. That is why I am fat, because I have paid someone else to teach me how to lose weight. Gotta tell ya, diets did not work for me and I tried plenty of them. If they work for you, great! Congrats. What worked for me was finally learning what in my life I needed to do without, and make a lifestyle change. The way I found this out might not be what would motivate you. Each person must find what works for him or her.
Saturday, October 10, 2009
"You are always entertaining and delightful"
That just sums it all up for me, I have known it for years and now to cosmos has confirmed it. I am not sometimes entertaining and occasionally delightful... ALWAYS!
Friday, October 2, 2009
Thursday, October 1, 2009
Wednesday, September 30, 2009
Tomorrow is the last day to submit fish recipes, btw. If you have not already done so. I have had some really really good fish the last 2 weeks! Thanks! Once I have graded all of the recipes I will announce the winner and get you something something... and you too Courtney! Thanks for the reminder of the Cancer Sucks contest. You are right, I had forgotten!
Wednesday, September 23, 2009
Monday, September 21, 2009
Friday, September 18, 2009
I have been listening to the soundtrack for the Broadway musical Next to Normal… pretty much all day every day for the last few days. It is very beautiful, although very much Rent-esque. What does that mean? Well if you are offended by the language in the soundtrack to Rent, you might want to not listen to this one. It also is very much a rock opera like Rent is. The music ranges from rock to beautiful ballads, almost a lullaby.
The story of Next to Normal is about mental health issues that a family deals with because of some mental health issues of the mom, Diana. While to story is a deep one, and the characters are rich, the lyrics to this musical are some of the most beautiful I have heard in a long time. My favorite line is “Valium is my favorite color, how did you know?”
The kids in the show, Natalie and Gabe, kind of fight for the attention of Diana. Natalie feels neglected by her mom because she focuses so much on Gabriel. At the same time the husband, Dan, tries to help Diana through her treatment and suggests radical treatment to “get them back to better than before.” The only other characters in the show are Diana’s therapist and Natalie’s boyfriend.
After electroshock treatment Diana loses 19 years of memory which includes the wedding and births of her children. Dan tries to rebuild her memory without letting her hear about the bad bits of their history. Slowly she starts to get her memory back, even the bad things. However, the biggest memory dealing with her mental issues is just out of reach and she cannot remember all of the pieces.
There are aspects of this story that are very touching. For example when Natalie sings the song about Superboy (Gabe) and the Invisible Girl (herself) Diana tells Natalie that she loves her; she tell Natalie that she loves her as much as she can.
This line hit me today as I was listening to it “I love you as much as I can.” We all show love in different levels and different degrees. There will be some people in our lives who are able to openly and freely give us all of their heart and show immense love to us. Others can only show a little, or are not able to express love in ways we may consider socially acceptable. It is interesting to me to see the different levels of love that we show through our lives. For example a little child learns early to love everyone. They have to learn stranger danger.
As teenagers I think we become scared of showing love, or of showing public love to our family. We are exploring new kinds of love with the opposite sex… or not. Then as young adults we once again start expressing love more openly to our families and friends. I hear there is no love to compare to the love of a new parent (although as an aunt I think I can come close to imagining it.) Once again we show unconditional love to another, it becomes all about another person.
Another aspect of this show is how our lives do not need to be perfect and try as we might we often fall short of that perfect dream. But as long as we try and do the best we can we can be normal, or sometimes we get close… we get next to normal. We get close to good. I think when we stop trying to be perfect and just try our best life becomes a little easier and a lot less stressful! When we can find our own version of normal, we have succeeded in this life and then it becomes our task to help others find their normal.
“Let go of what’s past, and maybe I’ll see you at last. We tried to give you a normal life. I realize now I have no clue what that means. I don’t need a life that is normal. That’s way too far away. But something next to normal would be okay. Yes, something next to normal, that is the thing I would like to try. Close enough to normal, to get by. We’ll get by.” Next to Normal
At the end of this musical, after all of the crazy and darkness of their trials, they sing a song about finding light.
“We need some light; first of all we need some light. You can’t sit here in the dark all alone, it is a sorry sight. It is just you and me. We’ll live you’ll see!”
Find some way to survive this life and be happy to live next to normal!