Saturday, February 27, 2010

Ohhh Shiny!

I do not know what has happened to me lately but it seems like I cannot concentrate on multiple things at once, like I used to be able to. At work I used to be able to juggle multiple projects at the same time. Now it seems I have to finish what I am working on before starting a new project. I even have had to start making lists. I remember vividly when I turned 30 and one of my female coworkers told me that my mind would slowly start to go and I would be making lists by the time I am 35. I thought this impossible because I really was a stellar self organizer… I now am 34 and she was so right! Hello my name is Stephanie, and I make lists.

It was pretty bad yesterday as I was doing a pretty intricate project. I had to close my door and ended up working 13 hours just to get done. Now it is Saturday and I am sitting at my desk yet again and just finished my work for the week. I just opened a web browser to download a billing statement and saw a story that looked interesting. After reading the story I had to stop and think “Now why did I open the internet?”Oy, I tell you what, it is a whole new ballgame now!

Do you ever get distracted by shiny objects? I guess I do, but they come in forms of paper, phone calls, and conversations as well. I tell you what, I usually do not feel old and would submit that 34 is still really young, but some days … some days I … what was I talking about? Oh right, the warm weather. How nice has it been here in Utah lately? I even opened the sun roof of my car today. Do you remember the Gumby cartoons? Gumby and Pokey were funny looking. Hand sanitizer is awesome stuff, but I bet the pump head on top of ours here at work is pretty germy. Milk is good. Told you…

Thursday, February 25, 2010


Life is unpredictable and fragile. I am struck with this realization any time I attend a funeral or hear that someone I know has died. Are you like me and will sit at a funeral and plan your own? I do this and I wonder if it is morbid or just my overwhelming need to plan every aspect of my life.

Life is a celebration of wonder and new experiences. Today I attended a funeral of someone who I used to go to church with. One of her friends related a story about when they were in college they had some roll dough in their freezer and were not using it because they were saving it for something special. She suggested they make scones one night with the dough. Her friend said "Shouldn't we save that for a special occasion?" To which she responded "Today is a special occasion!" It truly is, today is a special occasion because it is today!

Life isn't meant to be perfect, it is not meant to be easy. But life is meant to be! It is what it is. So live life to the fullest and celebrate the small things that make your life special!

Wednesday, February 24, 2010


I have been thinking recently about tone and how it affects those around us. I am not talking about tone in regard to music, but rather in regard to character and mannerisms; also in regard to what people say. I know it is common, and might even be the cultural norm in many cases, for us (human beings) to focus on the negatives in a situation. I include myself fully in this generalization. That being said I know it is a generalization and will not necessarily be true for you, the reader, specifically.

My thoughts recently have mostly been directed toward a few different specific groups: my work environment, the media, and introspectively to myself.

Like many other companies, our sales are down this fiscal year at work. However, I hear often from management that we will be down 20% at the end of the (fiscal) year. The tone of this suggests to me and my fellow employees that no matter what we do we will be down 20%; management has already decided that is the magic number. With this information why should we try to work harder? Knowing that our sales are down tells each of us that our yearly bonus will be down. The sad thing is many of my fellow employees have just accepted this as fact instead of speculation. Sad. I might suggest having a positive attitude and encouraging those who stand out as a highlight in sales that month. Instead of pointing out the doom and gloom, point out the positives. For 2009 we might be 20% behind 2008, but keep in mind we were 35% ahead of 2007. The current economic climate is not a death sentence; rather it is an overall general view of the country and does not specifically apply to all corporations. Setting a positive tone in the work environment not only inspires employees to do good work, it also motivates employees to come to work every day and to look forward to the success of the company. Who here looks forward to going to work daily? I sure don’t. In fact there are days when I wake up and think “I cannot face another day with _______ sitting outside my door.” I actually really like what I do for a living and look forward to doing a good job; what I do not look forward to is some of my fellow employees and the cultural environment of the workplace. It is negative.

I have to say first of all in regard to the media, just to get it off my chest, that not everything is a controversy; not everything needs to be reported; not everything is news. I am not oblivious to the idea that a celebrity gives up a certain amount of privacy in exchange for his or her celebrity status. But when did we become the people who ignore our work and head to the conference room to watch an athlete apologize publicly for his private behavior? When did we become a society that when we hear a wife of 2 is missing we automatically assume her husband killed her? When Team USA beat Team Canada in hockey it was not a controversy, rather it was a good game. I think sometimes that the media no longer reports the news but rather commentates individual views as if it were fact. Again, this is a generalization. Good news media should have an equal mix of inspiring and discouraging news reports. The tone does not always have to be negative nor do we have to focus on the negative for a long time. For example, it was a shock and tragedy when Michael Jackson died; but I do not think it was a story worthy of 24 hour news coverage for weeks.

With this in mind I look inside to find a solution because I am tired of the negative that seems to be around me most of the day. With so much negative, how does one find peace and inspiration? I have made a decision to be more self-conscious about my tone and attitude. I fully believe that no one can be positive and happy all the time; but a concerted effort to be happy and positive is a good first step. I find that I complain at work or about work a lot. While I may have things to complain about, I can make a conscious effort to push aside the negative things and focus on the positives. For example: I have a job! I make decent money doing something I enjoy.

I decide if I allow a coworker or manager to upset me with their tone and negativity. I decide if I am affected by the negative media or if I can hear the news and not be brought down by it. Being serious about a topic is fine, not everything needs to be funny and lighthearted (I heard a joke today by a coworker that was not funny and even though she was laughing it had a negative tone to the punch line.) I believe it is time to start lifting one another up again and finding the good in humankind; find something to lift rather than tear down. Find a reason to cheer for life; find a reason to live, rather than merely exist.

I tend to feel this way during the Olympics every two years or so; when I see the best in people from around the world. When I can see people win not because of degree of difficulty, but rather because of the degree of excellence in execution. These feelings generally fade for me after the Olympics end but this time I am determined to carry it on.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

BNL's New Song

Any BNL fans out there in my cyber world? I love this band and was worried about the new sound once Steven Page left. I'll be honest, there it is out for all the world to know, I was worried. I just heard their new single "You Run Away" and fell in love with this band all over again. Below is the song on YouTube, it is not their official music video. However if you want to see that visit BNL's site; it is on the home page. From what I have seen in interviews, Ed wrote this song after Steve left the band. BNL's new cd is due out in March, now I am excited for it.

Thursday, February 18, 2010

Did You Know...

... that on February 18, 1930 the planet Pluto was discovered? I do not care what scientist say, Pluto will always be a planet to me!

Wednesday, February 17, 2010


I have lately been censoring some comments left on my blog and I feel to answer as to why. First 99.9% of the comments I censor are from sources I do not know or recognize. My guess is that my post might contain a word or phrase that they track online by a reader or such. Most of these comments are left with a link to a website or blog that I do not know or recognize. The majority of these comments are either not relevant to what my blog was about or contained what I deem offensive or derogatory comments about "my people." Now while I believe in everyone's right to believe in whatever they will AND has the right to express their own opinion (free speech and all!) I also believe that this blog is the intellectual property of me. As such if I find a comment offensive or rude to me or my people I will block it. I have no problem with this. If I block a comment it means that my blog is not the forum for you to express your bile. Your blog is your forum to express your opinion and, if you choose, your derogatory comments.

This being said, if I do not agree with your point of view but you have not been rude, offensive, or condescending to me or my people I will gladly post your comment. I am all for a healthy debate about a number of topics and ideals. If, however, you choose to attack my religion, family, friends, etc not in a constructive manner, I do not want your comments any where on or associated with my blog. I will protect my people with every effort I can.

Just like Meredith is Christina's 'person', I have 'people'. I include in the phrase "my people" my family, my friends, my religion, my politics, my community, my state, my country, and most everyone in the human race. I include me in this phrase as well: I am often my own 'person.' You might not agree with what I post here on my blog, that is your right, but I do not attack people here and expect the same courtesy from the comments. I express ideas that often are only interesting to me and encourage a debate on many topics. I do not encourage rude comments from random or anonymous sources.

I do not encourage random comments that link back to your website or blog that has nothing to do with me or my blog. I will blanket block comments that have a web address that I do not know if it is from a person I do not know or trust.

I know there will be some people who do not agree with this, I am fine with that. Not everyone has the same opinion, which I love. Is it a double standard for me to say I believe in free speech and then block some comments from my blog? Maybe. But I ethically cannot post some of the comments I receive from time to time. That being said, the majority of my comments are appropriate and approved. I felt the need to explain why some people do not see their comment turn up.

That might be all I have to say about this right now. I digress ...

Tuesday, February 16, 2010

A Recommendation

Pinnacle Acting Company is performing The 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee through the end of this week. I know this is a bit short notice , but I just saw it last weekend. It is funny! The company did a great job with this regional premier. They hold pretty true to the original script with a few language adjustments. For those who know the show they do not edit any songs out, for those who do not know the show ... well let's just say I would rate it PG unless you get offended by songs about the male anatomy and the word 'erection' over and over again ... then it might be PG13. They pull up 4 members of the audience (who all volunteer before hand, so if you do not want to participate do not sign up!) to be spelling bee contestants. Mom was called up Friday night and I think she had a fun time. She spelled correctly the word Mexican but did not spell her next word right. Despite the fun nature of this show I would not take young kids to it, teen and above.

The last shows are February 18-20 at 7:30 p.m. plus a matinee Saturday at 2:00. If I remember right tickets are $15 for GA or $13 for students (they ask for ID) and seniors. It runs about 90 minutes or so and there is no intermission. This show plays at the Midvale Performing Arts Center at 695 West Center Street (7720 South).

I wish I had time to see it again, I totally would. I recommend! It's just a little naughty, but mostly it is just funny!

Friday, February 12, 2010

Farewell ... First Crush

When I was growing up a family with 5 boys lived next door and I had such a crush on one of the sons. His name was Phil Kesler. Phil passed away last night after a battle with cancer. Say it with me CANCER SUCKS! Phil was older than I and had younger brothers that I could have had a crush on, but no I was all about Phil growing up. Why? His voice. Oh he had a voice! He was handsome, calm, quiet and he could sing! If you have heard the music of Voice Male, you have heard Phil sing. I am a sucker for a man with a good voice, but I will melt for a man with a great voice. He was the first man to ever make me melt! He leaves behind a wife and daughter, and my thoughts and prayers are with them. Far too young to leave this world, but heaven's choir just gained a beautiful baritone. Rest in peace my first crush.

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

What Did You Call Me?

When I was a junior in high school I got a part time job after school. It was an ideal job because I only had to work 2-3 evenings each week and every other Saturday. I was able to work with friends that I had known my whole life. The family that owned the place was really friendly and we were treated well. Have you seen the movie The Sandlot? The store they buy the baseballs from, Vincent Drug, is where I worked. And we had a soda fountain in the back and my friends and I were Soda Jerks.

This drug store was old and very cool! The pharmacists would do all of their work by hand and even would sometimes mix the drugs in a mortar and pester. We made everything at the soda fountain from scratch.

The soda was hand mixed using syrups and soda water. We would make our own root beer syrup (I used to know the recipe, I wish I had written it down) and would serve Ironport (tastes like rootbeer mixed with Coke mixed with spices.) I used to make ice cream shakes and malts, ice cream sodas and floats, banana splits and sundaes, and we had a counter full of penny candy. To this day I still need to tell Jessie: You DO NOT have to buy penny candy only with pennies... we did take dollars for penny candy. At the counter we had a machine that could mix 5 shakes at once.

All of the syrups for the deserts could be used to flavor sodas as well. Cherry Coke was normal, Vanilla Coke was odd, Chocolate Coke was pushing it, but one guy used to order his Coke with pineapple and butterscotch ... do you need a minute to push back your gag reflex? I did too.

Last night was the first time I had thought of this place in a long time. I was having dinner with Candice and Hutch, we made our own chicken pot pie thank you very much, and for dessert we made shakes. They got this shake mixer for their wedding years ago and I got to use it. It honestly kind of felt like going home. I mixed our shakes and made a mess and even got to add candy for the first time ever. Mr. Vincent did not like us adding candies to the ice cream mixes. I miss that old place and wish it was still open if for nothing else than to belly up to the counter for a strawberry ice cream soda.

(These pictures were found on the web. Only the picture of the store itself is an accurate depiction of Vincent Drug. The other images are stock photos of other soda fountains and equipment. I sadly do not have any images of my own.)

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Let's Move

Have you heard about the new health and fitness campaign that is being spearheaded by First Lady Michelle Obama? Let's Move is a program designed to help combat childhood obesity and related health issues. But frankly I feel that it is a message I need in my life too and look forward to learning more about it. is the new website to learn more. The concept is not new: eat less, eat healthier, exercise; but it is always nice to have a reminder.

What Time Is It? ...

It's Valentimes!

Monday, February 8, 2010


The place that I work at is interesting. I am happy to have a job and this is NOT a complaining post. I just feel to babble. I work for a small company with 2 locations. There are 15 employees; 4 women, 11 men. The majority of these men are hunters or golfers. At any given time I can walk into an office of a coworker and find a gun (usually unloaded) or the head of whatever animal was recently shot. I do not like guns, in fact I am terrified of them, so the guys are pretty good at keeping the guns put away. Recently I sat down at a desk to help one of the guys and was mortified to find sitting next to the computer mouse a set of elk teeth; I was later told they are not teeth but rather ivory... calling them ivory does not make it any less gross! The perk? They share the elk or deer meet and usually it is so good. (Yes Julie S, even though elk have a face!) 4 of the men have boats. It would be fun to have a company boating party ... but I do not want to do the paperwork in case of an accident so I do not suggest it. I have been on a fishing excursion once with 3 of my other coworkers, that was fun. In the summer months it is harder to find the men in the office because they like to go hit a bucket of golf balls; since we are all salaried employees with the exception of the two part-time, no one says much. Last year I decided I was sick of the guys getting time off for golf tournaments or to hit buckets of balls so I bought a set of golf clubs. I suck at golf! My bosses have set up a very relaxed working environment and basically all that is required of us is to get our work done on time. I like this environment for the most part. I get to wear jeans when I want to and rarely have to dress up (the exception is when we have a big client or factory rep visiting.) We do not have a policy and procedure book or a dress code. This sometimes comes back to bite the company in the butt. I like showtunes and admit to sometimes singing them at work. I think we all know that in my reality people should break into song and dance when they feel like it, or when the moment allows, or when changing toilet paper (come on, you know you just stopped to think about a good "changing the tp song!) I admit to not having the best voice, though I can sing... oh yes, I can sing. My coworkers have given me one day a week in which to break out into song as I will. We call it Showtune Monday. Another of my coworkers likes the oldies and is allowed to blare his music on Wednesdays in the warehouse. I like to sing along sometimes, and since he typically does not play showtunes back there, I have a loophole in which to sing twice a week. Last year for my birthday one of my coworkers made me a delicious cake. He is no longer dating the girl from last year so my guess is that he is not taking a fun class to impress anyone so I will not reap the benefit from it. If I had to choose I would like him to take a sushi class next. I like sushi. We have a rule at work where for our birthday we bring in a treat ... I usually take eclairs but I think this year I might bring root beer floats. My office is quiet right now. Two of the ladies are not at work today. One is not here because she only works Wednesday - Friday; the other ... well honestly I do not know where she is. Most of the salesmen are out of the office right now and I am caught up on my work. Makes the next 2 hours seem might long! I have an office to myself off the main office where two of the ladies share the reception area. I would like to remodel this area but since it is not mine, I keep quiet. I just find the current layout inefficient and kind of messy. In my remodel plan no cords would show behind the new office furniture because the two ladies would each have their own cubicle area. Right now their desks are just out in the middle of the room. Our office has a bunch of art hanging. I like this. It makes the office seem a bit more inviting and less sterile. The art I have chosen for my office is not what I would choose for my home, but it is still very nice. Why am I still talking?