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Tuesday, June 29, 2010

Netflix

I freaking LOVE Netflix.  I had no idea how freaking awesome it was.  I LOVE IT.

Here are some interesting things I've watched recently:

Timer
This is a cute film that works even with all the plot holes.  Emma Caulfield (Anya on Buffy) plays Oona, a woman who is waiting for her soul mate.  Luckily, she has a Timer, which is a device in her wrist that lets her know the year, month, day, minute and second she'll meet her soul mate.  Unfortunately, her timer is blank, because her soul mate hasn't gotten a timer yet.  She meets a super hot guy who has a timer... so she knows they aren't soul mates, but can't decide if she should take a chance on him anyways.  This is a cute romantic comedy with a sci-fi twist.

The Tudors




Dirty, not-super-historically accurate, but AWESOME.  Dirty though.  For realz.

Top Gear


This is a Bryan show that I really like... these three Brits love cars, and are hilarious.  Great show, highly recommend it!

The Union:  The Business Behind Getting High


When I put this on, Bryan said, "This will just make you angry."  And it DID!  Tell me again why marijuana is criminal??  You should seriously watch this.  Unlike the above picture, it isn't as "entertaining" as it is "maddening."

Netflix.  You're so sexy.

Monday, June 28, 2010

And We All Float On Okay.... ish

Bryan, Cody, Molly and I floated Flat Creek today.  It looks sort of like this, but this is actually south of where we got out of the river.


It was a LOT of fun, but I sort of ate it on one of the rapids.  I got sucked under the water and my tube shot away from me.  I hit my leg on a bunch of rocks and now have a fabulous bruise on my shin and ankle.  I also sort of hurt my ankle in a weird way... I didn't sprain it, it just hurts.  And I got sunburned.  But who cares because it was SUPER FUN!!!

I'm hoping that my sunburn goes down by tomorrow so I can go run outside (if my ankle feels okay) or at least go on a walk.  I'm hoping to float the creek a few times more this summer, but as the water goes down, the rapids will get crazier and crazier!  Yikes!!

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Destruction and Diesel

My friend Lindsay and I caught the last fifteen minutes of the "Figure 8 Races" here in Jackson yesterday; it's pretty much a demolition derby but you also have to race around a track in a figure.  The car who makes the most laps and is still standing wins.

Let me tell you, it was SUPER white trash - dust flying, people screaming, gasoline smell hanging in the air... and I LOVED it.  It was freaking awesome.  We met up with Molly and Ricky (who actually paid to get in... we were cheap, thus showing up towards the end) and Molls and I decided next time they do this we're going to rock some country dresses and our cowgirl boots.  It will be EPIC.

I forgot my camera and only had my cell, so the pictures were less than spectacular.  Here is the one good shot I got:  it's a car being taken off the track because it no longer runs.  And got hit a bunch of times.  HECK. YES.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Friends!!

My friend Linds is in town this week, and we've been having so much fun.  My new friend Molly is in town for the next month, and I'm sooo excited. She is just so much fun and I want her to move here.  She's visiting her husband, who she's sort of been separated from (not by her choice) over the last 9-10 months.  They are trying to work on their marriage, and I keep praying they'll make it work and get back together.  I know they love each other, and I know how much Molly at least believes that marriage is a covenant between two people as well as God.  AND I want Molly to stay so we can hang out all the time.

Interesting tidbit:  Molly's husband is an ex-boyfriend of mine.  I thought she'd maybe hate me but we get along so well!!

I'm so glad Linds has been able to visit.  We've had such a great time hanging out, and I could tell she really needed a vacation.  This has been her first visit to Wyoming, and we've been having a blast just hanging out, visiting Grand Teton National Park and Yellowstone.  Those two girls are SO goofy, and I laughed more these past few days than I have in a very long time.  They're just so silly; I've really missed that.  I haven't had friends that goofy, who are willing to make fools of themselves in front of other people just for kicks, in years.  It's been just pure fun, and it feels like I'm back in college, in a way, even though Mol and I weren't friends in college (although we did all go to the same small school).  It's been really refreshing and rejuvenating.

Tomorrow Molly is hanging out with her hubby, so it's Lindsay and I on our own.  I'm not sure exactly what we'll do; we may hit the town square and shop a bit.  Thursday we're all hanging out in the morning, but I work at 1 until 10pm.  Which is sort of lame.  Friday we'll have all day just to hang out.  I think we're going to hike Hidden Falls and go up Cascade Canyon a bit; we're also thinking of getting one of those old West saloon girls portraits.  It will be awesome!!!

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Father's Day

My dad and I are very close; I am happy to say that I've always been close to both of my parents (except when I was 13 and 14, and apparently a bitch).  My dad and I do argue - we don't fight, we just disagree.  Actually, it may be that we agree TOO much, so when we disagree, it's a thing.

My husband has told me multiple times that I am a pretty clear mash-up of both of my parent's characteristics.  There are very, very few things about me that I do not get from them.  I share their sense of humor, their sense of justice, their empathy and their frustrations.  I am definitely my parents' daughter, and I am proud of that.  Yes, we also share similar weaknesses.  When they call me out on something that I've done or said that's less than fabulous, or when they think I'm just being silly or ridiculous, I tell them "I am your MASTERPIECE!"  Sometimes they laugh, other times... not so much.

My father is a bit of a black sheep in his family.  I love my father's side of the family, but they can be a bit rough around the edges.  My father "rebelled" by going to seminary; he knew from a young age he wanted to be a pastor.  His parents wanted  him to be a scientist or a meteorologist because science and meteorology interest him and he's adept at both.  Since they wanted him to go into another field, they did not help him pay for university.  Since he had to pay for it himself (and for other reasons, I'm sure) he went to university in Regina, Saskatchewan (that's in Canada, eh).  The average high for Regina in January?  13 degrees.  FREEZING!!  He got his degree in Religious Studies, I believe... or theology.  Whatever makes you a pastor.  My parents dated while he was at university; my mom was in Illinois getting her degree in psychology at the time.  My mom graduated on a Friday, got married the next day, and moved to Canada the next week.  Crazy!!  They then moved to Toronto, Ontario, where my brother, David, and I were born.  Yeaaahhh dual citizenship!!



My folks moved back to Chicago when I was almost 4 years old, and David and I grew up in the suburbs of Chicago.  My parents regularly took us on cross-country road trips, for which I will be forever grateful.  I love road trips to this day, and I'm happy to say that I've been to the following states, if not more:



create your own personalized map of the USA
or check out ourCalifornia travel guide

I think I've been to Oklahoma and Texas as well...but I can't say for sure.


 Although my dad is a pastor, my brother and I were not raised in a super-strict, weirdly religious fashion.  We grew up going to church, AWANA (kid's club sort of thing), Vacation Bible School and Youth group.  I was allowed to do most of the same things my friends were allowed to do, except my parents monitored my television (no Dawson's Creek when they were around...), my clothing to an extent (although I still wore halters and short-shorts when I was a young teen), and they made sure that they knew my friends.  My parents drink alcohol in moderation (maybe one or two drinks a month) and I grew up being able to have sips of it; once when I was about 16 or 17, they let me have almost a whole beer at a restaurant!  I honestly believe that their relationship with alcohol, and their willingness to allow me to try it, resulted in me having a healthy relationship with alcohol today.  I never got drunk in high school or partied, I didn't go crazy at 21.  It was sort of like "ah, now I can order a drink.  Nice."  I do drink occasionally, but it's usually 1 or 2 drinks per month.

My dad often asked me to question my beliefs, to question the things I hear, "is that good theology?" I've thankful he didn't ask me to just accept things at face value.  I asked to be baptized when I was 11, and he asked me to wait until I was a teenager at least, so I could have a better idea of what it was that I believe.  When I was 14, he baptized me in front of our church, friends, and family.



I believe my parents' view of sexuality also had really positive effects on me.  My parents were fairly open about sex, masturbation, questions, all of that.  We joked around at the dinner table; nothing lewd, just normal, healthy conversation.  I had a big head start on some of my friends in this regard, even though I didn't have sex until I was married.  I knew what I knew, I knew where I stood, and I knew that sex was a good, healthy, awesome thing.  I wasn't raised to be ashamed of my body, and that is such a good thing for a young woman.

But back to my dad.  My dad and I argue, yes, but we are so alike.  We think alike, we reason alike, we argue alike.  We think the same things are funny, even if they're not, really.  My dad taught me to play guitar when I was 13 (although I learned more later on) because I wanted to be like him.  My folks bought me my first guitar when I was 13, a kid's guitar, and when I was 16 they bought me the nice acoustic electric I still own.  They nurtured my creative side, allowing me to sing them songs I wrote or read them my poems.  When I was in high school, my dad took me on a dad/daughter date into Chicago to the Oriental Institute.  We looked at mummies and relics from Babylon and Persia together; it was a wonderful day.
 

My father's opinion of me has always been very important.  I remember once he told me I was getting too "worldly" (the Christian word for "don't be a skanky, consumerist bitch" it seems...?) and it CRUSHED me.  When I was 16 I wanted to watch a certain movie that was PG-13 but had lots of drug use and sex in it, and my dad said no.  He then watched a violent Ahhnold movie with my 13 year old brother, and I sort of called him on it, thinking that it was worse than what I wanted to watch.  We argued and I cried and ran to my room.  The next day he had broken the dvd and left it by my bedroom door.  I had no idea what this meant; was he sorry, or angry?  I decided angry.  I went to church that morning since it was a Sunday, sat in the second row, and stewed.  When my dad gave his sermon he talked about forgiveness, and humility.  He apologized to me in front of the congregation; he said he was wrong and that he lost my temper, and he asked for my forgiveness.  I cried and it was a little awkward, to be honest, but I felt so thankful to have a dad who cared enough to do that.  He could have asked forgiveness later on, when it was just the two of us, but he was willing to admit he was wrong in front of the whole church.  That kind of humility moves me.

When I was 21 I decided to move to Jackson Hole for the summer.  My dad (and mom) were 100% behind me and looked over my resume and cover letter.  They were a bit nervous letting me go across the country to live with roommates that I'd never met, but they were happy that I was brave enough to do so.  They let me grow up.  Our relationship slowly changed as I matured; I could tell he was concentrating less on 'parenting' and trying to keep me from making mistakes to letting me be my own person and grow up.  I'm sure it wasn't easy, but I'm so thankful for the trust they gave me.  I never felt like I had to PULL away from them to assert my individuality or maturity as an adult.  They freely gave it.

When I came back from Wyoming, I had a boyfriend, but I didn't tell my parents.  I wasn't sure where the relationship was going.  When said boyfriend asked to visit me in Chicago, I had to tell my folks.  Bryan flew out and met my parents; my mom loved him instantly, but my dad took his time getting to know Bryan.  My dad was very deliberate in that way.  He really wanted to make sure that Bryan was a good guy, and was worth my time.  The day before Bryan left to go back to Utah, he asked to sit down with my dad.  He asked my dad for his permission to continue dating me.  My dad said it was alright.  :-)

Bryan came to live with my parents (and eventually me) later that winter.  When Bryan asked for my hand in marriage, my dad said something like "if we weren't okay with it, we would have told you a long time ago."  He took his time getting to know Bryan, and I am so thankful for the relationship that they have.  I'm also thankful for my dad's willingness to allow Bryan to live with them so they could really get to know him.  They figured if he meant so much to me, they better know who would eventually be a part of their family.

I got married in the church I grew up in, the church my dad pastored.  It was across the parking lot from my house, so I got dressed in my old bedroom the morning of my wedding.  I walked across the parking lot with my bridesmaids.  My father was in the church foyer, and my husband-to-be was in the sanctuary.  My dad teared up when he saw me, and he told me he loved me and gave me a hug and a kiss before opening the doors of the sanctuary so Bryan and I could have our "first look" of our wedding.


My dad gave me away at our wedding as well as conducting part of the ceremony.  He and my uncle switched off roles, but it was my father who preformed who did the whole "you may now kiss the bride" part.  At the reception we danced to "You've Got a Friend" by James Taylor.  My dad sung that song to me when I was a little girl, and I still tear up thinking about it.  He danced with me and sang me the song on my wedding day with tears streaming down his cheeks.  It is one of the single more powerful memories that I have.


After we got married, Bryan and I went on a week honeymoon to our cottage on Lake Michigan.  We came home for a few days to finishing packing, and then we moved as far west as possible, to Humboldt County, California.  It was 2,250 miles away.  My parents missed me, but they were proud once again that I was brave enough to move across the country and start a new life with my new husband.  They moved across the country (and into Canada!) when they were first married; they raised my brother and I to be risk-takers, when the risk offered a good reward.  When my brother got married a little over a year ago, he and his wife Stacey moved to Flagstaff, Arizona - 1,665 miles away from home.  My parents were proud of them, too.



I am so thankful that I was given such a wonderful father who taught me about my Father in heaven, who joked around with me, supported me, and loves me fiercely.  I love you Daddy.  Happy Father's Day.

Friday, June 18, 2010

Sunshine and Paragliding

So I didn't get a full-blow migraine, and I got to hike up High School Butte again.  I was hiking for a full hour only, and got 12 mosquito bites.  NASTY.  Need to find some lavender oil or something to keep them away... I also hear dryer sheets work well  Anway.  Below are some of the awesome things I got to see while up on the butte.

Sunshine and Lemonade

I hope when I have kids they are as cool as these kids.  The kiddo dressed up as a gorilla is probably about 10-12 years old.  He took off his hat to pour my lemonade; I told him he could keep the 25 cents if I could take his picture.  How awesome are these kids??  And 75 cents isn't bad for a big ol' red cup of pink lemonade!


It's beautiful and sunny outside, but I'm beginning to feel a migraine set in... I'm hoping it goes away soon (at least the flashing lights) so I can enjoy the outdoors!!

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Batchout

I've spent 5 and a half hours today trying to make yesterday's batch out report work.  The report came in after we were closed so the girl who closed couldn't run it...

I've spent 5 and a half hours on it today and CANNOT MAKE IT WORK.  Every time I recount my numbers, something is off.  I'm like $200 over, but I'M not really $200 over since I HAVEN'T WORKED IN TWO DAYS!!  But I still have to do the batchout.

So I cried like 3 tiny little tears out of frustration, and did it all over again.  It still won't come out right.  I'm going crazy.  I can't do this anymore.

I hate numbers and I feel like pulling my hair out.

Monday, June 14, 2010

Granite Canyon

Bryan and I hiked Granite Canyon today and it was a lot of fun!  I think we both got a little red, but not burned, because we used some awesome cancer-causing sunscreen (see below post). 

We saw two moose, which was very cool.  Except the second one was less than 50 feet away from us and we kind of stumbled upon it.  If you don't know what a moose is, here's one I saw a few weeks ago.


Oh you knew what a moose was?  Good.  Glad.


The water was amazingly clear!  This is right by where we were scared by the moose.  Apparently streams and waterfalls make it hard to hear animals until they're about to eat you.  So.


My husband officially will not pose normally for a picture.  The first picture I took he looked normal, and then I looked closer and I realized that he had a bunch of nasty chewed up food he was showing me.  Awesome.  Not a dork, not at all.

And if you forgot what I looked like...


Yeah.  That's apparently it.

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Weekday Veg

I know there are a lot of us out there who want to reduce the amount of meat that we eat.  Bryan and I have been trying to eat meat only a few times a week.  This past week hasn't been so good... I bought bacon to put in my baked potato soup, I used chicken broth for my orzo, and I ate a hot dog last weekend.  Not too great.  Not terrible, though...

I think there are so many reasons to cut back on meat.  Meat production has astronomical affects on the environment, it's not that great for us, and it costs money.  Add in the unethical treatment of animals in factory farms and you have really good reasons to go veg, or at least PARTIALLY veg.  I personally am not interested in cutting all meat out of my diet; I like meat.  I really do.  Carnitas is my favorite Mexican dish.  Chicken panang curry is my favorite Thai dish.  And a hamburger?  Ohhhh I love a good hamburger.

Since I cannot commit myself to vegetarianism, I think this "Weekday Veg" plan is a good one; Bryan and I have been eating meat 'whenever' but limiting it.  It seems to work for us.  The Weekday Veg is a bit easier since you know exactly which days you CAN eat meat.  Obviously, you don't have to be super strict with it, but it's a good framework.

By the way, this video and the video on underwater photography and ecosystems comes from www.ted.com.  I highly recommend paying this site a visit - it's hard not to get caught up in all of the interesting talks!

Sunscreen and Cancer and Warnings, Oh My!


In the last few days, Jenna at That Wife and Leigh at Marvelous Kiddo have posted about sunscreens.  Apparently, the FDA has had information stating that sunscreen may protect you from sunburn but will not necessarily protect you from SKIN CANCER.  Which is ridiculous, and makes me angry.

I feel like sunscreen has been preached over and over again as protection against skin cancer. Am I wrong about this??

The Environmental Working Group's report posts the following information on their sunscreen website:

This year, new concerns have arisen about a form of vitamin A called retinyl palmitate, found in 41 percent of sunscreens. The FDA is investigating whether this compound may accelerate skin damage and elevate skin cancer risk when applied to skin exposed to sunlight. FDA data suggest that vitamin A may be photocarcinogenic, meaning that in the presence of the sun’s ultraviolet rays, the compound and skin undergo complex biochemical changes resulting in cancer. The evidence against vitamin A is far from conclusive, but as long as it is suspect, EWG recommends that consumers choose vitamin A-free sunscreens.
EWG has again flagged products with oxybenzone, a hormone-disrupting compound found in about 60 percent of the 500 beach and sport sunscreens analyzed. The chemical penetrates the skin and enters the bloodstream: biomonitoring surveys conducted by the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have detected oxybenzone in the bodies of 97 percent of Americans tested...
Some of the blame falls on the FDA, which has yet to finalize regulations for sunscreens promised since 1978. FDA officials estimate that the regulations may be issued next October – but even then, they expect to give manufacturers at least a year, and possibly longer, to comply with the new rules. That means the first federally regulated sunscreens won’t go on store shelves before the summer of 2012.
According to skincancer.org, "A person's risk for melanoma--the most serious form of skin cancer--doubles if he or she has had five or more sunburns."  Also: "Children are especially at risk: One blistering sunburn in childhood or adolescence more than doubles a person's chances of developing melanoma later in life."  I have only had one blistering sunburn that I know of; I was 21 and didn't think to apply sunscreen on my neck (or if I did, it wore off).  Maybe you've never had a blistering sunburn.  What about this? "A person's risk for melanoma--the most serious form of skin cancer--doubles if he or she has had five or more sunburns."  Most people I know have had at least five or more sunburns throughout their life.  I usually get sunburned once a year if I'm not careful.

Marie Claire recently ran an article on skin cancer and how to take care of your skin in the summer.  In this article, Manhattan dermatologist Dr. Jody A. Levine mentions that "tanning lamps emit four times more damaging UVA rays than the sun," and that your risk of melanoma (the most deadly skin cancer) increases 75 percent if you tan indoors before age 35.  I have used a tanning bed several times before I wised up to the fact that it's just not worth the risk.  I tanned in high school before homecoming/prom, I tanned in college to get through the winter blahs (my folks do this as well, since it helps with their seasonal depression - winter in Chicago sucks), and I tanned before my last cruise in 2008.  I knew better, but I still tanned twice in a month.  My folks tan much more than I am comfortable with; I've talked to them about it, and I hope they realize that my nagging is out of concern, not haughtiness.  (I know you read my blog Dad - I love you!!  Take care of your skin!!  Grandma Nelson's skin cancer recovery did NOT look fun!)

The sunscreen/moisturizer that I currently use is listed on the Environmental Working Group's website as one to avoid.  I use Jergens Natural Glow Face Daily Moisturizer, SPF 20, for Light Skin Tones.

I'm bummed it is listed as a sunscreen to avoid, because I like the way it makes my skin feel; it moisturizes, and it has a gradual sunless tan aspect that I love.  I use it every morning, thinking that I'm protecting my skin and getting a bit of color along the way.  Of course now I'm considering changing...  Here's what the EWG website says about it:

The overall score is a 7 (0-2 is recommended, 3-6 is cautioned, 7-10 is avoid).  It provides Moderate UVB protection, but Poor UVA protection, and Poor UVA/UVB balance.  It has a HIGH Health Concern.  Under "Other Concerns" they listed that it contains oxybenzone.

Here are the ingredients in my sunscreen that are "cautioned" or ingredients that I should "avoid."

It may be hard to read (I just mashed together the bad ingredients in Microsoft Paint) but you get the idea.  Check out the Oxybenzone - developmental/reproductive toxicity, endocrine disruption, biochemical or cellular level changes...  Not okay.  The Aluminum Starch Octenylsuccinate lists developmental/reproductive toxicity, neurotoxicity, organ system toxicity, and heavy metal warnings.

What amazes me about some of these findings is that these chemicals are found in so-called "baby" sunscreens!  If Oxybenzone affects adult development, including the reproductive system, that does it do for babies and young children??

This isn't to say that sunscreen shouldn't be used - it's just important to find a sunscreen that's good for you.  Go here to find out which sunscreens the EWG recommends.  Go here to find out how your sunscreen rates; hopefully it got better ratings than mine!  Go here to find 9 Surprising Truths About Sunscreen (this pretty much sums up the above, plus points out a few good reasons to question your current sun blocking methods).

Oceans

The ocean is such a wonderful, magical, sometimes scary, place.  If you have ever been snorkeling or scuba-diving, you know this.  It's amazing what can be found just underwater.  For instance, this is my sea turtle friend:

This picture was taken on a cruise that my family went on in January of 2009.  I giggled a whole lot, because when in the world do you get to see this?!  He even let me touch him, it was really cool.  We snorkeled in a bay off St. Thomas, and this guy just swam up to us.  We saw some really amazing fish and other sea life.

Here is my sister Stacey pretending to kiss a "Donkey Dung" sea cucumber.

This guy was sooo not as cute, and although I touched him, I was not interested in holding him.  Or kissing him.  Stacey is much braver than I am.

I found this video sad and inspiring at the same time.  Make sure to watch the section on shrimp fishing, and the "garbage" that accompanies it.  It's so sad how much we take for granted; the animals that have to die as a result of our idiocy.  I see nothing wrong with fishing on a small scale, but obviously, some things need to change.


Thursday, June 10, 2010

New Design

Iffff you haven't noticed, I changed the design of my blog!  I am not at all html-inclined; I tried designing my own template-y thing once and it looked pretty awful.  The previous design of this blog wasn't my favorite, but it worked, and it wasn't terrible.  That said, I like this design a lot more.

I used Blogger's new Template Designer to personalize it, and I like the end result.  I know a lot of blogs are much less busy-looking.  Many of the blogs I read have a basic white background, which works well with their aesthetic and the pictures they post.  I do not have a fancy aesthetic, and to be honest, I'm a sort of decoration-clutter person.  My apartment has tons and tons of pictures on the wall, I love lots of colors and patterns, and white doesn't do much for me.

Thus, the new design. What do you think??  The colors remind me a bit of the Royal Tenenbaums, my favorite movie.  LOVE Wes Anderson.


source

Anyone else obsessed with this movie??  Especially the Margot/Richie relationship?



source

Ahhhhh and the music!!  Elliott Smith, The Ramones, The Rolling Stones, Bob Dylan, various members of the Beatles...  FANTASTIC.  So.  I'm going to watch it now for my last hour and a half of work.  And smile at my new blog design.

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

"Greenland is covered with ice, and Iceland is very nice!"

Does anyone know in which movie the above quote can be found???

Does this video make you want to go to Iceland RIGHT NOW LET'S GO!?!?



Inspired by Iceland Video from Inspired By Iceland on Vimeo.


via A Cup of Jo

Wait... what?

Today whilst traveling about the internets, I saw this ad:


Who knew that homeless dude/Moses would be the one to bring in those refinancers?? Advertising GENIUS!!!

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

Today

I wish all days consisted of the Tudors, sewing, soup, three hours of tennis, friends, and ice cream.  Annnnd now I'm going to take a bath.

Too bad tomorrow's work! 

And since I haven't posted any pictures recently, here's a picture of my super duper cute nephew GK making his fishy face while standing next to some fishies at the Lincoln Park Zoo in Chicago.

Humboldt

I talked to my dear friend Rachel today.  She lives in Humboldt, and she and her husband Dan were really the first people to be our friends (well, them and the Csehs).  We hung out at their house a couple of times a week, and we spent holidays with them when we couldn't go 'home' to Chicago or Idaho.  I was at the hospital visiting their daughter just 7 hours after she was born.  I could tell Rachel pretty much anything.  She was the one I talked to after Bryan was in the hospital with pneumonia; she was the only person that I really cried in front of when I told her how scared I was that he could have died.

This was the first time I talked to Rachel since we moved; I don't talk on the phone very much, and neither does she.  It was really really great to talk to her, and I didn't realize how much I missed her and Humboldt (meaning all my friends plus the place itself plus my church, Catalyst) until I hung up the phone and started crying.  I really love Wyoming but I hate that we're so far from our Humboldt friends.  Our Humboldt friends were there for us the first two and half years of our marriage.  They were the first people we met for the first time as a married couple.  Humboldt was the first place that was our home, as a married couple.  It will always have a very special place in my heart.

Today is beautiful in Wyoming, but in my heart I wish I was in Humboldt today.

Sunday, June 6, 2010

Top 20 Things I Should Have Learned...

...the first time, and didn't (copied from my sister, Stacey)

1) Just because someone says they love you doesn't mean they have your best interests at heart.
2) There is such a thing as too much coffee.
3) Don't judge people on the music they like.
4) Having a lot in common with a boy doesn't mean you should date that boy.
5) Don't lie.  Lies grow bigger and bigger and get harder and harder to keep straight.
6) Your parents are smarter that you are, and more experienced.
7) If you wonder if you've had enough to drink, stop drinking.
8) A steady diet of ramen and hot cocoa won't exactly make you skinny.
9) Life is too short for soy ice cream, unless you're lactose intolerant
10) Black and white may make sense in colors, but not in life.  Most things are shades of grey, and deserve critical thinking.
11) Don't even CONSIDER dating someone who takes longer than you to order a meal (no tomatoes, no pickles, mustard on the side, diet soda no ice, with a lemon), especially if that person doesn't tip well.
12) If someone says, "Eww, does this smell weird to you?" DON'T SMELL IT!!
13) If you know you're allergic to something, don't just eat it and think," I'll take an antihistamine later and be fiiiine;" unless you want to stay up all night sick.  It's a good way to lose five pounds, but you'll feel like death warmed over for the next 24 hours.
14) If you're not feeling well, don't go on WebMD.  It's always cancer.  You do not have cancer.
15) Exercise may not sound fun, but you won't regret doing it.  You will regret not doing it.
16) People will say stuff like "I don't BELIEVE in television."  It's okay if you do, and if you say so.  TV is awesome.
17) Everyone feels stupid and out of place in high school.  It's okay.
18) If you hate hate hate sports, it's okay not to feel compelled/guilted into to watch "the game" with your boyfriend EVERY SINGLE FREAKING WEEKEND.  So glad Bryan isn't into sports.
19) Love your friends and family no matter what, and tell them so. 
20) Blue lipstick is never an option. Not wearing make up IS an option.

Drop a Blog...

I have a new blog addiction:  STFU, Parents.

This blog takes inappropriate Facebook status updates/pictures, blurs out any specific names or places, and makes fun of parents for being any of the following:

  • disgusting
  • entitled
  • mean
  • overly cutesy
  • annoying
  • scary
You will see gems like this one:


Along with the fabulous blogthor's (yeah, that means blog author now.  That just happened) awesome commentary, like this:


"Do people not realize what SALES is anymore? Like, hellooo, I want to be sold something. You don’t just get my business because you are knowledgeable about a product and “good” at your job, ‘cause guess what? Part of being good at your job is kissing my ass. And not only my ass, but my adorable baby’s ass, too! (Seriously, you should see her little tushy - SO cute!)
Yeah, I get it; You’re available to answer any and all questions, you are more than willing to put aside your lunch break to help me stare at carpet samples, and you sincerely complimented my new sandals. GREAT. But guess what you didn’t do? Say hello to my CHILD, who is not a half-person, or some random little throwaway kid who gets a passing glance. Everyone agrees that my little angel is the cutest baby they’ve ever seen, and since you apparently don’t think that (since you didn’t wave or wink at her, or offer her a present or anything) then you won’t be getting any commission from this lady! That’s just how it is.
(submitted by Anonymous)"

Ohhhhhh the ENTITLEMENT of some people!  I just RELISH reading some of this crap!  Most of my Facebook parent friends are totally cool about being not-annoying/appropriate on Facebook, but every so often you get one that posts a picture of their kid's crap or makes a status update about the color of their kid's vomit, and that is NOT OKAY!  Do you hear me?  No.one.wants.to.know.

STFU, Parents is not a mean blog to ALL parents; if it was, I wouldn't read it.  I happen to have lots of awesome friends who have kids, and I want to be a parent myself some day.  But this website is GOLD for those of us who are sick of people over-sharing about bodily functions, or friends who say "well try having a baby on top of that!!!" every time you complain on Facebook.

Pure gold.

Friday, June 4, 2010

Weather or not...

The weather this week (and last week) has pretty much been identical to Humboldt.  Which means that I am OVER it.

Rain.  More rain.  A little more rain.  That's what the last 8 months were like in Humboldt, and now we're getting it again.  Annoying.  Hella annoying.

We went to a friend's gallery showing tonight and that was cool.  He does amazing metalwork, creates beautiful beautiful animals out of steel.  I wish we could afford a piece of his work... maybe something 2 inches by 4 inches?  No bigger.  He makes really awesome art.  The horned owl sculpture on driftwood was my favorite - graceful yet incredibly strong.

We decided to go on a walk around the square (okay, I did, I wanted some fresh air... Bryan was feeling overwhelmed by the close quarters in the gallery and wanted to go home) and we ran into two friends of mine from college who have been working out in Jackson a bit.  They mentioned a movie they were going to at a place I've never heard of - maybe a fun new date spot?

We also walked by a restaurant called e.leaven that looked really yummy and had great prices by Jackson standards.  I think we'll end up going to eat there.  They had really good sounding sandwiches and soups, and I've gotta say, I'm definitely a soup and sandwich type of girl. Apparently there's an e.leaven in Chicago too!!  Very very cool.

Tomorrow we're having a concierge party at Phil Baux park.  Free food, free beer, free prizes (but only for the concierges... boo).  One of the prizes is a MARMOT PRECIP JACKET with Jenny Lake Boating logo.  Yeah.  Like the $100 Marmot PreCip jacket that I've been lusting over.  Yeah.  That one.  Unfortunately the one they're giving away is an XL so it would be too big anyways.  BUT STILL.  Lucky concierges.  At least I get free other stuff.

But.  Come on sun.  Come visit us.  Need sunshine.  Need people to go on float trips.  Need people to go on float trips so Bryan can drive people and make money.  Need.  Sun.

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Work

Bryan and I were talking today about the future, whether we try to stay in Jackson throughout the winter and into next summer, or if we make a real push to find "professional" jobs.  I'd really like employer-subsidized health insurance again.  That would be nice.

I mentioned that neither of us has every worked a job that required a college degree (even though we both have one).  That's kind of lame.  I also realized that I've never worked a job where I've had to wear anything fancier than jeans and a casual blouse.  That's pretty awesome.

It's hard to know what to push for in this economy.  "Real job" with benefits?  Or seasonal work that's not fancy but is a bit more assured? 

I read an article the other day that mentioned that bachelor's degrees are pretty much obsolete; they no longer guarantee a job.  Master's degrees don't even guarantee a job some places; people with advanced degrees require a higher pay scale, so some places don't want to hire them.  Kind of ridiculous, right?  I never considered NOT going to college - it was a given.  It certainly doesn't do much nowadays though. 

When I was switching majors the end of my sophomore year of college, I considered becoming a radiologist or an ultrasound tech.  I don't know if my chances for a job would have been better or worse.

Anyone else feeling very "bleh" about their college degree?  Don't get me wrong, I like my job, but it does seem ridiculous at times that I still own $17,000 in student loans for a college degree that I can't seem to put to use.

If It Was My Home

Geek in Heels posted this and I thought it was really interesting.  You can go to If It Was My Home and see how big the oil spill in the Gulf is compared to where you live.  It makes me so angry every time I hear about the spill... It's just disgusting what we will do for oil.  Just absolutely disgusting.  And we see the consequences of our actions here and abroad.


Here's how much area the oil spill would cover If It Was My Home.

Sad.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

GEAR

Bryan and I were in Pocatello, Idaho these past two days, visiting family and running errands.  We went into Sports Authority to see what they had in their hiking boots section.  Bryan was looking to get a nice pair for the summer.  I have these Teva Tamur boots:

I got them at Ross about six months ago, and I thought they were a really good deal at $25.  You can buy them on Amazon for $85.  Huh.  $25 seems like a better deal.  But that's just me.

So Bry was looking for a nice pair as well.  We knew that our friend Kendra was working, and she showed us some of the deals that weren't well-known yet.  Bryan ended up getting these:


The North Face's Endeavor hiking boots.  They're normally $70 but they were at Sports Authority for $40!!  Sah-weet.

So we were shopping with our friend and friendly Sports Authority associate Kendra, and she told us that if we spent $100 we would get a $25 gift card.  And I needed a helmet ANYWAYS that would cost about $25....

So we got Bryan a fancy tennis racket for $40 for his birthday.  It's originally priced at $225.  WHICH IS A RIDICULOUSLY GOOD DEAL.  I have a racket but Bryan didn't, and this will give us another fun exercisey activity. 

And THEN I found a wick-away tank top for hiking.... and a nice black fleece.  So we definitely spent the $100 and went into our regular "did we spend too much??" guilt.  We told each other that playing tennis will give us exercise, which is good, and that we will get to play with Cody and Kendra.  And I wanted that fleece baaaadly.  So we justified it.

Then we got back to Jackson and found out that there was an unclaimed check in the mail from Bryan's job at Humboldt State.  $325 bucks.  That we didn't know existed.  Woohoo!  And then we decided that Bryan's tennis racket would be his birthday present (he turns 27 today).

Bryan said, "It's so fun to live in Jackson and to be able to spend time outside.  Too bad you need gear to really enjoy being outside."  It's true.  We bought/need/want bike lights and helmets and tennis rackets and fleeces and backpacks and cool rain jackets/wind breakers (Bryan has one, I want one) and in the winter we'll want winter gear. 

AND we had a pro-deal with Marmot through work, so we'll probably get at least one thing through that.  Jackson:  you make good money working here, but between the rent and the food and the gear, you still have to carefully watch your bank account.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Formspring

I forgot to sort of explain Formspring.  Those people like me (dorks, I know) who spend a lot of time reading blogs will be familiar with it, most likely.

My Formspring is a place where you can go and ask any question you want.  If you sign up for Formspring, you can choose to have it display your name so I know it was you who asked the question, or you can ask anonymously.  If you do not sign up for your own Formspring, your question will show up anonymous.

I see the question, and who asked if (if you requested that it show me it was you) and I can decide whether or not to answer.  It's that simple. 

I like Formspring because it can be fun, and it can be a good way to get to know a friend/blogger.  I read Mandy/OMGmom's Formspring as well as Jenna/ThatWife's Formspring, as I really enjoying read both of their blogs; I think they're really interesting gals with very differing points of view.  This way I can read more about that, see what other readers are wondering, and ask dumb stuff in the hope they answer (like "who wins in a fight, a shark or dinosaur??)

So yeah.

That's Formspring.