Monday, November 29, 2010

My Crazies

My favorite crazies made the news, I guess. Look for my sisters Colleen and Debbie between minute 1:00-1:05; bless 'em! I was safely tucked in my bed with care, and Sissy, dreaming sweetly about NOT SHOPPING!!

Thursday, November 25, 2010

The Crazies

Can we talk for a moment about the crazies that are standing in line right now in 16 degree weather to go shopping tonight/tomorrow? Oy. I have never gone shopping early like that, I have never had a deal that I HAD to have that much. But I have some sisters (you know who you are) out there right now and will be shopping all night long. ALL NIGHT! They have stops at one store that opens in a few minutes, then they are off to one that opens at midnight, then another that opens at, then one at 5, then one that they will hit later because they do not want the door buster ... thing. My goodness; that is love of a good deal! Me? I am having a sleepover with Sissy, Mom has LoMo, and Mac is upstairs with her dad. It makes me wonder if I had kids if I would be out there too? Stay warm my favorite crazies!! And by that I mean, "You cra-cra!! Yo!"

Oh and Happy Thanksgiving all! If you are one of those crazies out there shopping right now, or soon, be safe and no pushing!

Friday, November 12, 2010

Chicago ... finale

Okay, the post to end the Chicago posts. As mentioned earlier I went out to Chi because Brady was in West Side Story. The Richter's offered to fly me out for the weekend, which was so generous! I was out there for 5 days. The last day I went downtown to my favorite old places to visit: The Art Institute of Chicago and Ed Debevic's.

By the planetarium there is the best view of the city

So here are my boys. Handsome, right? Dylan, 20, is on the left and Brady, 17, is on the right. Remember when I went out there D was 4 and B was 1. They are good men and I could not be more proud of who they have become.

This is the gang after opening night of West Side Story. l-r: me, Grandpa Arthur, Grandma Sylvia, Laurie, Jim, Brady, Katie, Dylan.

I have 5 musicals I do not like; they are my top 5 least favorite musicals. Feel free to hate once I name them from least to most: Oklahoma, West Side Story, Guys and Dolls, Annie, Seven Brides for Seven Brothers (I loath SBFSB!) So when Laurie told me that Brady was in WSS and I needed to come out and see it, I of course readied myself for the worst. I have to say I was pleasantly surprised by the talent in this show! The sets were amazing, the talent was 90% perfect for the roles, the orchestra was outstanding, and I admit I was a fan of this production. I could not have been more proud of Brady! That boy can sing AND dance. I was just a proud nanny the whole time. I cried at his final curtain call. The girls who played Anita and Maria were perfect! I was in love with the number Officer Krupke in this version. In LOVE!! They boys did such a great job with it. But of course I only had eyes in the production for Brady as Riff. I was really hoping that by closing night he would be won the knife fight. Side bar on the knife fight: They used real switch blades that had just been buffed down. Not safe. That is my boy up there Bernardo was killing... side bar done. Brady really is a triple threat and I cannot wait to see what he does in the future. He actually has an appointment to audition for the theater department at Stanford. Oh did I mention that my brainiac boy applied for Stanford, Yale, & Harvard? I tried to talk him into University of Utah, but no joy. He applied for 11 schools and most of them were Ivy League. Brainiac will probably get accepted to at least one of them. He wants to be a mechanical engineer designing green technology when he grows up. No too shabby for a kid who used to cry in the car wash! Oh sorry B!

So needless to say I loved my trip. I always enjoy spending time with this family. They really were good to me. I was treated like family from day one. These are good people and I am honored they trusted me to help raise their kids. I believe this ends my rambling about Chicago... or does it?

A Post Just for Ranell

So I have this friend from Chicago... We'll call her Ranell (because that is her name). Ranell and I met in Chicago (are you tired of Chicago stories yet?) If I remember right she took over as a nanny when my friend Colleen Johnson left. Side bar on the funny that was meeting my friend Colleen Johnson. Sister's name was Colleen Johnson before she got married and changed it to Molen. So when I met Colleen Johnson in Chicago I laughed and laughed and called Margo over to meet her and she laughed and laughed. It is a wonder that we ended up friends seeing that when we met I laughed. When she left Ranell took over. Is that right?

So what is so special about Ranell that she gets her own post? Oh so many things. Did you know that before I met Ranell I had never seen Pride and Prejudice? The long 6 hour BBC version. I had never read the book. I did not know who Lizzie and Mr Darcy were. I know, right? So Ranell arranged a group of girls to come over to my house where we all went up to the pool room and watched it. I think of her every time I put it on. When we were watching the show I did not know if they were going to end up together. I was like, "If they do not end up together I will burn this house down!" To which she was like "Want me to get you the matches?" True friend! (that exchange is a fictitious creation of what could have happened.)

Ranell has this laugh that is so infectious! I cannot not laugh when she laughs. And of course I think I am really funny so she laughed a lot! (so humble!)

Now I have never really been a girl who always is attracted to the guy that everyone else is attracted to. Do not get me wrong, I like the handsome, but for some reason I look first for the guy that will be a good dad and can support the family. Also eyes, eyes are rather important to me! So there was this guy in Chicago who actually was the first guy out there I had a bit of a crush on. Not huge, but a crush nonetheless. We ended up becoming okay friends, which was great, and the crush died over time. Ranell married that guy. ...pause while I shoot jealous eyes toward Oregon where they now live ... and we now return to our regularly scheduled post ... who I am sure is a great dad and is handsome to boot.

So why does Ranell get her own post when I have not seen her for like 8 years? I am in a Chicago state of mind. I need to go get me some deep dish pizza or a Chicago dog and just get Chicago out of my system. And one day, sooner than later, I really need to make it to Oregon and visit with my friends. Not long before I went to Chi I had lunch with our other friend Em and we talked about you, just saying. I miss you Ranell, thanks for the comment and reminding me about how much I love your laugh! Say hi to B for me.

You, the reader might be asking if the Chicago posts are done. They are not, I reply. I still need to post the pics of my boys and tell you all about West Side Story... the musical I love to hate.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

The Ladies Who Lunch

When I lived in Chicago I had some great friends. When I first moved out there I had Krissy, Lori, and Dora. These women were nannies too and taught me the ropes. Of course I cannot forget Colleen Johnson (not my sister, but my friend from Chicago), Ranell, and Jen. Then there was Molly, Margo, Christy, and Renee. The 5 of us were pretty close. We traveled together (multiple times), served in church together, played together and, of course, ate together.

While I was there this last weekend I got my girl's together for lunch. Well all of us but Margo who lives out here now. We had 2 hours to catch up on each other's lives ... and it was not long enough! I miss these ladies!

l-r Christy, Renee, me, Molly

I had so many memories run through my head from Christy calling me the crazy glue of the group, fighting with Nee over the dolla, the many many trips to Nauvoo, the last trip to Nauvoo where there was an unfortunate accident and that stupid ambulance was not driving my friend to the hospital fast enough, finding new uses for feminine hygiene products, Ghiradelli cheesecake, seeing Joseph for the first and 10th times, shrinkidinks, diet coke, Glen and Betty's car, Ghiradelli cheesecake ... we had it more than once ... and laughing. I think I laughed more with these women over the 4 years or so I lived out there than should be allowed. I have great respect for them and love how they shaped my life.

So to my ladies who lunch: ti volgio bene!! (Molly taught me that years ago!) I love you all and wish you well.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

The Link Email

Have you seen that email from a friend that just contains a link to click on and no message from your friend? I have seen probably 10 of them in the past 2 weeks. Some are a "file share" link and others have '.au' at the end. Well these contain a virus that then emails your whole address book. Just a friendly reminder to only click on links of names you trust (not people you trust, but link names) and always open all links at your own risk.

And to the 'virus creators' there is a special place in hell for people like you. It is sandwiched between the person who created nylons and Ted Bundy. Enjoy eternity.

Added Note: I heard on the news last night that some of these viruses are designed to activate by even opening the email, not even clicking on the link. Which is worrisome because how many of those emails have I opened?! Be careful out there!

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Let's hear it for the Boys

When I was 18 and fresh from high school I moved to Chicago to be a nanny for two of the most amazing boys. D was 4 and B was 1 when I moved out there. I was their nanny for almost 3 years, then went on an LDS mission, and returned to nanny for one more year. These boys are mine. They are my boys!! It was 16 years ago when I first met them and I was scared out of my mind to move from Utah to Chicago to work for a family I had never met. Fast forward to today, literally today, as I sit in the living room of my old home in Chicago visiting my Chicago family. I have been staying in my old room and chillin' with my little boys ... who are not so little now!

When I talk about my Chicago family I am talking not about a blood related family, rather a family I adopt as my own. I love this family just maybe slightly less than my immediate family back home in Utah. J&L (the parents) are good to me, always have been. D&B are just really good young men now. D, 20, is a basketball player in college (gulp!) and B, 17, is a senior in high school. D is now 6'2" and B is just behind him at a solid 6' (pics to come once I get home and can download them.) What I love about these two is that they are good men. They are polite, talented, and decent men. Can I say handsome too? Of course I can, proud nanny here!

My first day here I sat doing homework with B after school. Right now I am sitting doing homework with D, though I just finished and he is still working. The cool thing about that is that D and I have one class right now that are so similar we had a nice chat about HR stuff. Long gone are the days where we talked about Pokemon cards and played hours and hours of basketball outside. But I will forever be grateful for those memories because I believe they were an excellent foundation for what we have now, which is a really nice friendship as adults.

D is leaving to go back to college today, B is in West Side Story as Riff (he gets that from my side of the family) so has been super busy, and J is heading to China tomorrow for a business trip. Life marches on, but for 3 shorts days I had my boys again and it felt like home. Now Mom, before you get offended, I cannot wait to come home tomorrow to my family and friends. But this weekend was great for me to catch up with my other family.

Next up, a blog about the ladies who lunch!!

Thursday, November 4, 2010


Right now, at this very minute, I am sitting at a kitchen table in Chicago doing homework with a boy I used to nanny. Sure he is working on calculus and I am writing a paper about the legal environment of human resources, but it kind of feels like home... you know?

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Holiday Boutique

Every year when we were growing up my Grams had a Christmas Boutique where she sold greeting cards and wrapping paper. It is such a rich tradition in my family that her grand children have tried to carry on the tradition after her death. Though admittedly we do not sell gift cards and wrapping paper.

This year, as in years past, the boutique will be at my house in Midvale 7792 South Coolidge. This year the following people will be involved:

My sister Colleen Molen with The Busy Bean with her custom made fabric creations such as purses and dresses.

My sister in law Kate Johnson Photography who is an amazing photographer. She will be able to set up a photo session in time for you to have your family photos taken for your holiday card.

My brother Barry and Besty's Mom Melanie are doing The Christmas Bakery again this year. They made delightful treats last year perfect for teacher or neighbor gifts.

My cousin Anna sells Scentsy which are wickless candles and other accessories. She will have stock on hand as well as be able to take orders.

My cousin Leslie with My Tulip Garden which is vinyl crafts and custom jewelry. She takes custom orders and will have plenty of things to sell.

My cousin Christa sells Mary Kay make up and will have gift sets along with her full catalog.

The boutique will be Saturday November 20 from 10-3. We have a great time and hope you will join us to get a jump on your shopping this year. Plus doing it earlier than we usually do will allow for time to complete custom orders. Plus, being not a "girly" girl, it is something fun to do with my girl relatives. If you have questions let me know, otherwise I hope to see you there.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

A Special Call and Other Election Tidbits

  • Did you have the President of the United States specifically ask someone to call you yesterday and ask you to vote? Hm?? No?? I guess I did. I was not there to take the call, because that would have been cool, but it was nice to know President Obama still cares about his old pal in Utah! I am sure he would have called himself, but he must have had a busy day or something.

  • I told Dad he should just not vote today because our votes just cancel each others out so really Mom is the only one who really needs to worry about voting. I do not think he bought it ... I am pretty sure he saw through my plot there.

  • For the first time in my history I am sad it is Election Day. Those really fun Utah Voter ads are going to stop. I am going to miss that funny couple talking about election stuff. (You are going to receive texts about elections? Yes, I can text. Oh really? LOL. I do not even know what that means. Uh-huh.) I finally found out their names are Jake and Julie Suazo and they get my vote ... for coolest couple of the year.

  • Election day has magical juju for me. I was balancing the bank statement at work and was off by a mere $62,000. (chump change, right?) Well I found $20,000 of it pretty quickly and asked Besty if she could magically help me find the other $42,000. I opened the election site to look at the amendments one more time and between both Besty and Election juju I found it. That must mean my candidates are going to win!

  • There is one political figure that scares me a little right now. I finally figured out what my issue is with her. It is not her policy, everyone is entitled to their own views of the issues; it is not her voracious attack of things she is against; it is her actual voice. Besty used have this eye twitch when she heard someone sing a bad note. I now have that eye twitch when this political figure is on tv.

  • Do I need to encourage you to vote? I can, I can encourage. I believe strongly in the right of every US citizen to be involved in choosing the leadership. I believe that on Election Day our voice is carried out through our decision of who to vote for. So vote, if you want your voice heard.

  • I wore my lucky election shirt today. It is not really a shirt about elections, it is just the shirt I have worn on the last few Election Days. I have a lucky election shirt and good election juju. In the immortal words of Michael Scott "I am not superstitious, just a little stitious."