Saturday, February 28, 2009

:::quote of the week -- february 28, 2009:::

{this photo has nothing to do with the quote of the week. it's just a picture of what i ate for lunch last Sunday.}

"Nothing is ever settled until it is settled right."

-- Rudyard Kipling

:::recognition, acceptance, love:::

i'm trying to find a conference talk that i often find myself thinking of. i don't remember what the main theme was, but at some point the speaker said that we can't expect recognition or praise every time we do something right.

this thought frequently rolls around my head as i write my own blog, and read the blogs of other women who are in situations that stretch across a very wide spectrum of experiences. if i had to pick three things that every woman wants, they would be:

-- recognition
-- acceptance
-- love

i want recognition.
i want acceptance.
i want love.

after all, who doesn't hope someone will recognize their talents? who doesn't want to find acceptance from the people that surround them? what woman doesn't crave love, in all of its forms? i do. i do. these are wonderful things to want, things that can build our feelings of self-worth and enrich our relationships with friends and family. and i think that as many of us blog, in a way we are seeking after and asking for at least one of these things.


will we keep going even if these things come late? don't come the way we expected them to? don't come at all?

i hope so.

in blogging, and in life, i hope so.

Friday, February 27, 2009

:::creative instinct:::

in one of our january Relief Society lessons, we discussed Elder Uchtdorf's message, 'Happiness, Your Heritage.' i meant to post some quotes from his words that very day, but i never got around to it. then, this morning, i found this amazing mormon message video on another blog and remembered that i still hadn't posted about this inspiring talk.

this is a powerful message. i found his teachings on creativity, which this video focuses on, to be especially touching and true. i can't expound any better on what Elder Uchtdorf said, so here you go...

ETA: this is a video from the LDS Church's official youtube channel.

Wednesday, February 25, 2009

more secrets tomorrow

does anyone else have really slow internet right now? is it because of the economy?


there is something going on with the raising of my niece that i do not agree with. at times like this, an aunt has no other option but to bypass the parents and go straight to the child to rectify the situation.

tonight i called in the middle of story time and asked to speak with sophia. i said i needed to talk to her about, 'secret aunt stuff,' and my sister foolishly gave her the phone. ha! amateur!

sophie was really excited about the prospect of secret telling, more so than i thought she would be. she took the phone and i heard her say to herself, "ok, i've got to go far away so no one hears this."

with privacy guaranteed, i told my precious lamb my secret, and let me tell you, she was over the moon. i am officially the favorite aunt -- hands down. stop trying squints, it's o-vah.

we shared some giggles, and i basked in the gooey, innocent sweetness of this shared moment with my cognitively developing niece. it was all so magical...

and then she asked for more secrets.

so i told her i was sending her something in the mail, and she got really excited again, and told me that i could send a card to her brother and one to her sister as well, but to only put a present in her card.

and we giggled and i basked in even more sweetness from another shared moment.

then she asked for more secrets.

and she kept asking, and asking, and asking, and i tried to think of exciting things that a 6 year old would want to hear, but i could not for the life of me think of a single appropriate (sometimes auntie cries herself to sleep!) secret from my own life, so i decided to pillage the years and years i spent with her mother for material. after all, the whole secret conversation started because of her, so it's only fair, right?

so i said, "do you want to know a secret about your MOM?!", and she said, "YEAH!"

"well,, time, when she was younger...(light bulb!) she died her hair with kool-aid!"

and that was all i could think of, but it did the trick. it may not seem like a big deal to you, but let me tell you, it caused quite the scan-dal in our household. sophie naturally wanted to know what grandma and papa said -- grandma: "WHAT DID YOU DO TO YOUR HAIR?!?!" -- then she went dancing back to story time to tell everyone that one time, mom put "kuh-kool-aid" in her hair.

then she asked for more secrets.

and i realized that i had opened a can of worms, but by golly, i wanted more of that gooey sweetness, so i told her i'd think of some more and call her back tomorrow.

when she handed the phone back to her mother, i'm told that she sang out, "more secrets tomorrow!" and did a little dance before she ran off.

the pressure is on.

so, basically, i'm writing this post to let you know that i'm about to sell you up the river, because, come on, i have to stay the favorite aunt.

Sunday, February 22, 2009

:::quote of the week -- february 22, 2009:::

{i like this picture, it makes me look like an elf. i like elves, havo dad, etc.}

i have slacked on posting the quote of the week for two weeks now, so to make up for that i offer you a double header of quotes, courtesy of soren kierkegaard --

"The most painful state of living is remembering the future."

"Life has its own hidden forces which you can only discover by living."

and one more for good measure...

"- A poet is an unhappy being whose heart is torn by secret sufferings, but whose lips are so strangely formed that when the sighs and the cries escape them, they sound like beautiful music... and then people crowd about the poet and say to him: "Sing for us soon again;" that is as much as to say. "May new sufferings torment your soul."

Saturday, February 21, 2009

:::snapshots do-over -- saturday, february 21, 2009:::

my sister accused me of being in a bad mood yesterday, probably in regards to my spelling rant, so i decided to do a snapshots do-over for you today.

1. today was a housekeeping day, though i feel like i did more shifting and stacking than genuine cleaning and organizing. oh well. at least i was able to put things away that had migrated to various places over the course of the week. that always feels good.

as i was getting started this morning i had to make a special trip to the bathroom just to get water, not to drink, but to fill up various containers. there you see the big blue reservoir for my humidifier, the evian bottle that i cut the top off of and use to fill my clothes steamer, and the little purple spray bottle that i spritz my houseplant with.

besides that, i usually have at least two cups in my room, one filled with ice and the other filled with water. i'll have to post about my ocd tendencies with mixing ice water some other day...

2. my boss took me out to lunch yesterday for my birthday. we went to my least favorite place in the area, but the lunch was still decent and of course it was a very nice gesture. i ate my leftovers -- crispy fish burrito and fried plantains -- for lunch today.

3. the cutest little girl in the universe turned 6 this week! she called me this morning to tell me that she is about to lose her first tooth, and the realization that we can't keep her from getting older actually hurt my heart. losing teeth? she might as well be a teenager. i can't handle it.

when she told me she had a tooth that was 'a little bit loose like it's falling out,' i said, 'NO!' and she quickly replied, 'TRUE!' she so funny, but seriously, who is this grown up child? anyone else remember this?

sunrise, sunset...

4. laundry time! i had to make three trips downstairs before there were enough washers open to accommodate all of my loads. i could have done single loads throughout the morning, but that drives me nuts, so i waited until i could use four machines at once.

5. the girl who cleans my room each week gave me a collection of scrapbook papers for my birthday. i was totally floored by her generosity. on the outside of the package she had written funny messages like, 'just a bunch of stuff i stole from your room,' and 'there's nothing in here, i'm poor.' receiving her gift was one of the best parts of my birthday.

inside the pack were these dividers to separate your papers with. how fortuitous! i really needed these and was about to make some myself. score!

6. speaking of being crafty, i've really lost my inspiration. this afternoon i was determined to make something, so i started a small decoupaging project that i eventually had to throw away because it was so heinous. i guess i'll stop forcing it until i get that loving feeling back.

7. during our conversation this evening about, what else, my life, my mom was giving me career advise and at one point made a reference to 'hemingway and his drunken friends.' i really like my mom.

8. i went to the little market near my house tonight to get dinner for tomorrow. i also picked up these hit cookies that i remember eating at my french friend's house all throughout childhood. i had to laugh after examining the packaging and discovering the descriptions written in english and spanish, though they were made in poland by a company based in germany! ah, globalisation...

and yes, i did just spell globalisation with the common british spelling, even though the OED has this to say about that...

"... some have used the spelling -ise in English, as in French [...] But the suffix itself, whatever the element to which it is added, is in its origin the Greek -izein, Latin -izare; and, as the pronunciation is also with z, there is no reason why in English the special French spelling should be followed, in opposition to that which is at once etymological and phonetic. In this Dictionary the termination is uniformly written -ize."

chacun à son goût.

but tonite still isn't a word.

:::me-festo -- part 2:::

i am an introvert. i'm not afraid to be alone.

i enjoy being alone. it doesn't scare me, it doesn't bother me, i like it.

here is a fascinating quote from an article i read recently about introverts on the job search. i found that it perfectly explains how i feel as an introvert:

"In everyday language, people often use the words 'shy' and 'introverted' interchangeably," notes Wendy Gelberg, a career coach whose firm Gentle Job Search/Advantage Resumes ( has been advising introverted executives since 1979. "But introverts are not necessarily shy." Rather -- in contrast to their extroverted opposites -- introverts are more focused on what's inside their own heads than on what's happening around them, and they are refreshed and energized by solitude. Extroverts direct their attention outward and get charged up by having other people around. Says Gelberg: "After spending a few hours or a whole day with others, an introvert needs to withdraw and be alone for a while, while an extrovert will be saying, 'Let's party!' "

"We tend to feel that extroversion is the gold standard, that it's more 'normal,' " she says. "But that's because it's all we see, on TV and elsewhere. After all, a television show about someone just sitting quietly or reading a book wouldn't draw many viewers. And then, as introverts, we don't get together and share our experiences, so we assume we're all alone."

Friday, February 20, 2009

:::snapshots -- friday, february 20, 2009:::

1. i bought my very first suit this week. a skirt suit, of course. it's fully lined. have you ever worn a fully lined suit? it's like butter putting it on. silky nirvana for your arms. i'm in love.

2. even though i expect it, the email from zappos telling me that my shipping has been upgraded to free overnight delivery still makes me happy.

3. my windows are being cleaned as we speak. like, right now. weird.

4. the power went out on our block yesterday afternoon at work. after putzing around for two hours, we decided to get happy thursday started a little early. grape soda for the believers, and chicken fingers in the dark.

5. my knees hurt.

6. tuff is not a word. tonite hasn't been a word since the ink was wet on the magna carta. for the love of mike, people, i can't handle it anymore! TONITE IS NOT A WORD!!!

7. how do you turn down birthday gestures you don't want? answer -- you can't. dang it.

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

:::me-festo -- part 1:::

you've seen this listed under 'coming soon' for months now. so, here it is -- part 1 of my 'me-festo', which is a manifesto about who i am.


1. this blog is not my journal - if my life ever seems more fantastic, or more depressing than yours, remember that.


still not feeling the posting vibe, so here you go.

my birthday (last thursday, not today) was fantastic, probably the best of my life. generosity poured forth from coworkers, housemates, friends, and family.

the best part --the very best part -- was the surprise party that my friends at the house threw for me. i was so happy that i couldn't stop smiling. i've secretly wanted a surprise part my entire life. check.

on sunday i went to elizaben's for dinner. it was very good, of course. i made a coconut cream pie and brought the leftovers home to my friends.

great birthday. couldn't have asked for a better day.

Monday, February 16, 2009

:::birthday eve:::

i have no blogging motivation right now, but i need to post about my birthday before it's no longer of interest.

to celebrate birthday eve, i...

picked up a bunch of birthday mail...

steamed all of my sweaters...

and read my favorite scripture...

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Saturday, February 14, 2009

:::cake face:::

when i woke up this morning in a rotten mood, i knew i needed to get out of the house and walk around to clear my mind. when i was trying to figure out what to do, i remembered an article i had read about an exhibit at the national portrait gallery of president obama's and president lincoln's faces made up of thousands of cupcakes. this seemed like a perfectly fun and whimsical thing to do, so i gathered up every. single. piece of energy and positivity that i had and headed downtown.

after stopping by the library to get some books, i went across the street to the gallery, where i walked through some awesome (read into that) modern art displays to get to the cupcakes.

it was really cool! that's a shot from the second floor...

and here are some close-up shots from the first floor.

the BEST part, however, was the live webcam that was set up because i realized that i could call my mom and have her find the feed online so that she could watch me while we were talking on the phone!

luckily, it wasn't that hard for her to find the right website, and once the feed loaded she totally saw me! it was so fun to be able to talk to her on the phone and have her see me live at the same time, since she hasn't seen me since august.

i then called sarah and the kids and told them about the website as well. at that point i had been jumping up and down in front of the camera for a good, long while, along with a handful of other patrons. after realizing that the webcam had turned into a pretty big draw, one of the museum workers left and came back 10 minutes later with this banner so that we could all more easily guide the people we were talking to on our cell phones. i thought that was nice.

i got to talk to all the kids and then i talked to sarah for a long time. she would ask me questions about the people i was standing next to, tell me where to go stand, etc. i probably shouldn't have been so entertained by being on a webcam and having my family see me, but i was.

during our conversation don was upstairs on another computer and took some screen shots of me waiving to the kids. i'm the brown one wearing the pink scarf...

{trying to play it cool..'can you see me?'}

{'ok, i'm waving.'}


at this point i was just lounging around talking to sarah. notice the jacket half on, half off, since i was getting a bit overheated. sarah saw me start taking it off and asked me if i was going to strip for the camera. i kept forgetting that she could see what i was doing!

this is my favorite screen shot. i must have been talking to one of the kids because i look really, really excited. i also like the little girl in the blue sweater who is also staring at the camera and talking on a cell phone. i'm telling you, it was a big draw.

the woman in the bottom right hand corner is the artist. i heard her talking to someone about the design process and it was incredible how much planning had to go into the execution -- from the initial drawing, to turning it into a gradated graph, picking the colors, and then the trial mock-ups she did after figuring out the transportation issues.

she was telling the man exactly how many cupcakes could fit in one aluminum pan, how many pans could fit in one sterilite container, and then how she had to measure the containers to figure out exactly what size of u-haul she needed...mama mia. not a simple project.

anyhow, i must have been on the phone for at least 45 minutes until hunger and shame forced me to finally leave. that was after many false starts where i had hung up the phone and was walking away and my mom or sarah would call and tell me to go back so that they could see me again. i finally left and quickly stopped by some other exhibits...

as well as the family fair where i got an autographed picture from george washington to his 'favorite citizen,' then headed home.

sarah called me when i was a block away from my house and asked me if i had left for reals because they were still watching the feed. later, my mom told me that she had logged back on to see them dismantle the portrait and pass the cupcakes out to patrons.

i'm telling you, go find a public webcam and call your family. it was definitely the best free fun i've had in a long time.

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Friday, February 13, 2009

:::don't be a hater:::

item 1: it is not valentines' day, it is valentine's day -- a day for saints (yes, plural, who knew?) named valentine, not a day for all of us valentines, catch my drift?

item 2: why are there so many valentine's day haters? seriously, people. don't complain to me about the greeting card industry and hype and single awareness day, and blah, blah, blah. you're talking to a girl who has never had any kind of romantic entanglement on valentine's day, and it's still one of my favorite holidays. as my mom said, 'it's all pink and red and white, how could you not love it?" amen, mother. how could you not love this day about love?

don't have a man? so what. make cards for your friends, reminisce about the past, dream about the future.

in a crappy marriage? oh well. there's always the after life, right?

ha. i crack myself up.

and don't get all holier-than-thou about expressing your love all year long. get over it. sure, there are 364 other days to tell someone you love them, but there's only one day where the whole world celebrates your love along with you.

stiff upper lip, people. don't join the hoards of the bitter and depressed. celebrate tomorrow for what it is -- a happy little day of love.

{birthday post coming on Sunday}

Thursday, February 12, 2009

:::27 today:::

Grow old along with me!
The best is yet to be,
The last of life, for which the first was made:
Our times are in his hand
Who saith, "A whole I planned,
Youth shows but half; trust God: see all, nor be afraid!''


Rejoice we are allied
To that which doth provide
And not partake, effect and not receive!
A spark disturbs our clod;
Nearer we hold of God
Who gives, then of his tribes that take, I must believe.

Then, welcome each rebuff
That turns earth's smoothness rough,
Each sting that bids nor sit nor stand but go!
Be our joys three-parts pain!
Strive,and hold cheap the strain;
Learn, nor account the pang; dare, never grudge the throe!

Not once beat "Praise be thine!
I see the whole design,
I, who saw power, see now Love perfect too:
Perfect I call thy plan:
Thanks that I was a man!
Maker, remake, complete,--I trust what thou shalt do!''

Therefore I summon age
To grant youth's heritage,
Life's struggle having so far reached its term:
Thence shall I pass, approved
A man, for aye removed
From the developed brute; a God though in the germ.

And I shall thereupon
Take rest, ere I be gone
Once more on my adventure brave and new:
Fearless and unperplexed,
When I wage battle next,
What weapons to select, what armor to indue.

Youth ended, I shall try
My gain or loss thereby;
Leave the fire ashes, what survives is gold:
And I shall weigh the same,
Give life its praise or blame:
Young, all lay in dispute; I shall know, being old.

Thoughts hardly to be packed
Into a narrow act,
Fancies that broke through language and escaped;
All I could never be,
All, men ignored in me,
This, I was worth to God, whose wheel the pitcher shaped.

Ay, note that Potter's wheel,
That metaphor! and feel
Why time spins fast, why passive lies our clay,--
Thou, to whom fools propound,
When the wine makes its round,
"Since life fleets, all is change; the Past gone, seize to-day.''

Fool! All that is, at all,
Lasts ever, past recall;
Earth changes, but thy soul and God stand sure:
What entered into thee,
That was, is, and shall be:
Time's wheel runs back or stops: Potter and clay endure.

He fixed thee 'mid this dance
Of plastic circumstance,
This Present, thou, forsooth, would fain arrest:
Machinery just meant
To give thy soul its bent,
Try thee and turn thee forth, sufficiently impressed.

But I need, now as then,
Thee, God, who mouldest men;
And since, not even while the whirl was worst,
Did I--to the wheel of life
With shapes and colors rife,
Bound dizzily--mistake my end, to slake thy thirst:

So, take, and use thy work:
Amend what flaws may lurk,
What strain o' the stuff, what warpings past the aim!
My times be in thy hand!
Perfect the cup as planned!
Let age approve of youth, and death complete the same!
-- "Rabbi Ben Ezra", Robert Browning

Tuesday, February 10, 2009

:::all i wanted for Christmas:::

was a beef stick, remember?

but mom said no, again, for the millionth time, probably for the same reason that i wasn't allowed to wear corduroy pants as a child or play the game girl talk with my friends even though it's only a game, and playing it doesn't necessarily make you 'own of those girls', and heaven knows i probably could have benefited from being one of those girls since i'm staring down 30 with less 'experience' than a pimple-faced 13 year old...

anyhow, my mother has rules for how things are done.

so she told me, yet again last year, that i couldn't have a beef stick for Christmas. so i said, 'why?!' and she said, 'rebekah, i'm not getting you a beef stick for Christmas!' and i took up my burden -- not playing it so heavy as in the past because of her cancer -- and then she felt bad (which was the point) and sighed and said, 'fine, i will get you a beef stick for Christmas,' and i said, 'no, no! i don't want a beef stick anymore!' and she said, 'i'm getting you a beef stick!' and i said, 'i don't WANT a beef stick anymore!' and she said, 'where can i buy beef sticks online?' and i said, 'do. not. get me. a. beef stick. for Christmas.,' and she said, 'ok.'

so really she won ANYHOW even though it was MY Christmas present we were talking about...


so anyhow, i didn't get a beef stick for Christmas.

but because my other family members read my blog, and because i have put so much effort into my relationship with my posterity (by extension), i got a beef stick for my birthday. a 14 oz, beef and pork, hardwood smoked, semi-dry, summer sausage from hickory farms established 1951, farmhouse recipe. that's what is says on the label. that's what it is.

last night, after i had opened my package, and after the tears subsided and i was finished jumping on my bed, i called my sister's house to thank them for the sausage, and she said, 'see! we read your blog!', which i already knew because they leave comments, but now i really know because they got me my very own beef stick for my birthday, just like i said i wanted for Christmas.

so now i think i'm going to start dropping subtle hints about things i like to see how many of my readers will send me presents, because if i can't make money selling ad space on my blog i might as well get almost strangers to send me gifts in the mail, don't you think? and pretty soon i wouldn't have to buy anything for myself because i could write a blog post about the window i'm having a hard time finding curtains for, or how much i love the color pink, or that i really love making cards but can't get the craft store ever because i don't have a car, and people would send me pretty little packages in the mail just for me being me and because they really wanted to be cool and popular just like i am. that would be awesome!!!

but, let's get back to the beef stick. i was so happy last night, and i told my sister, 'i'm so happy tonight!', and sophia shouted in the background, 'DO YOU LOVE YOUR MEAT STICK?!', and i shouted back, 'YESSSSSS!'

and i'm slicing into it now. at work, mom. i'm eating my beef stick at work. yeah. not so dainty, am i?

and for future reference, i like the color yellow, polka dots, and starburst candies. my birthday is on thursday, so you could send me something in the mail that i would get on my special day if you sent it priority or fedex or something like that, and then i would have something waiting for me when i got home and i could pretend that i was all shocked that my dear friends actually remembered me on my special day.

and if you send me something really good i might even mention you on my blog and maybe you could start your own racket with your own readers (but i won't be one of the people sending you presents since i started the whole thing).

happy birthday to me.

(picture to be added)

Monday, February 9, 2009

:::things is wish my mother had told me:::

i just finished things i wish my mother had told me by lucia van der post. it was excellent! this book was full of wonderful advice on style, decorating, food, everything, really. the writing style has a warm and chatty tone that is infused with loads of wisdom that the author has gained throughout her 25+ years working as lifestyle/style journalist.

not only does she offer general knowledge, but there are also very specific tidbits like where to buy the best linen (perhaps edith mezard, or maybe chateau de bagnols) and shop for the best perfume (try lorenzo villoresi, or les senteurs). let's get real, i'm never going to be able to afford shopping at any of those places, but it was sure as heck fun to read about them!

but don't worry, van der post understands that we aren't all living the high-life. she gives great tips on what to economize on and what to splurge on, and what stores to check for great items for our wardrobes and home for those of us who aren't pulling a six-figure salary.

i cannot recommend this book to you enough. i was sad to see it end, and i will more than likely buy it so that i can have it for reference purposes. here are some of my favorite quotes --

1. "never underestimate the power of glamour. it's life enhancing, and even the plainest woman can be glamorous" (page 19).

2. "if we're going to wear black -- and we surely will, because black is the new black more often that it isn't, and it certainly won't ever be going anywhere for long -- we've got to learn how to wear it. it needs drama" (page 21).

3. "nothing -- not even a pair of manolo blahniks or a blissful shearling coat -- does more for the morale than a spanking new haircut that really works" (page 123).

4. "really great scents aren't cheap. if you can't afford good ones it is better to wear nothing and do as master hotelier gordon campbell grey does, simply smell divinely of nothing but fresh soap" (page 149).

5. "i absolutely empathize (again) with andree putman when she says, 'of course, i love seven pillows behind me, but physical comfort is never the first thing. i prefer spiritual comfort, by which i mean space, light (natural, as well as artificial), contrast of textures, and pure lines. i never look for literal comfort, but for something that allows my mind to rest" (204).

6. "the thing i always remember about my mother...was that she made the small and not very prepossessing apartments she lived in seem warm and welcoming because she always filled them with books and music, flowers, fruit, and chocolates" (206).

7. "i'd rather the house smelled of fresh coffee, fresh flowers and simple honest soap then cheaply scented candles" (245).

8. "pick up, say, the sear catalog and, in among the stuff you wouldn't give house room to, you will find some gems" (page 253).

9. "if you're short of money, though, the real pitfall to avoid is buying anything you don't really, really love" (page 254).

10. "all the best houses take years to evolve, layer upon interior designer with their instant solutions, their bulging address books and professional know-how could ever create a house as intersting, as particular and as individual as the houses that are truthful expressions of their owners and the lives they've lived" (page 255).

11. "most experts seem to agree that while the difference between a thread count of 120 and 250 matters greatly, once you go above 250 you're just showing off" (page 234).

12. "i see no point in eating bad food. it gives no pleasure, no proper nutrition and makes you fat" (page 277).

13. "most of us love giving presents and i can't think how we've come to the sort of state we're in in the western world where come Christmas time they seem to be a source of such angst and resentment...perhaps it's time to remind ourselves how lucky we are that we have money and a plethora of fabulous shops and delicious things to choose from -- and, even more importantly, that we have people in our lives that we love and care about to give them to" (page 307).

14. "if i'm really, really pushed for time and need to produce a supper for sixteen -- or even a smarter dinner for six -- i've learned ways to doll up the best supermarket food. it may not be up to the finest homemade but it's better than not seeing your friends or making excuses not to welcome visitors" (page 283).

the best way i can describe this book is to say that it was a delicious read. van der post knows her stuff, so even if you don't agree with her personal tastes, you can still respect that she isn't like so many self-proclaimed style mavens who shop coordinating lines and use their money to buy pretty things and indulge their fancies. what i would give to have a long lunch with this woman.

Sunday, February 8, 2009


Saturday, February 7, 2009

:::quote of the week -- february 7, 2009:::

my favorite quote from my favorite piece of writing --

"we owe to our first journeys the discovery that place is nothing. at home i dream that at naples, at rome, i can be intoxicated with beauty and lose my sadness. i pack my trunk, embrace my friends, embark on the sea and at last wake up in naples, and there beside me is the stern fact, the sad self, unrelenting, identical, that i fled from. i seek the vatican and the palaces. i affect to be intoxicated with sights and suggestions, but i am not intoxicated.
my giant goes with me wherever I go."

-- Self-Reliance, Ralph Waldo Emerson

:::fake it:::

here are three things i can be happy about...

1. my clothes steamer.

2. burrito brothers and their condiment bar.

3. my bedding, which still makes me very, very happy.

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:::two-second valentine's craft:::

i was reading how about orange last night when my attention was caught by jessica's instructions on making heart shaped paper clips. i remembered that at one point i had obtained (read into that) some multicolored paperclips, and i crossed my fingers that i hadn't tossed them out in one of my whirlwind purgings.

i cracked open my desk drawer, and...yes!

so i followed the simple instructions and was really pleased with the end results.

this is the only creative thing i've done in more than five days, and it felt good to make something pretty at the end of a sad little week that ended in tears. don't you hate those weeks? so blah and weepy and low-energy. oh well.

Thursday, February 5, 2009


what a dull, boring, low-energy we.....oh, sorry, fell asleep while i was typing...low-energy week. i've got nothing to show for myself and no ideas rattling around in my head. i hope i get some motivation and inspiration by saturday, because i would hate to waste a weekend feeling so 'blah'.

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

:::work -- january:::


here's to my first month dedicated to my word for 2009 -- work! january has been a big month for me, full of spiritual leaps and bounds, changed attitudes, prayers answered, joys received, trials, frustrations, setbacks, annoyances, a little bit of everything.

to show my dedication to work, and to my resolutions, i tried to keep a running tally of all the work i did this month. i wanted to record all the tasks i completed, all the things that needed to get done but i didn't want to do, as well as anything that i've been putting off and avoiding, and some things that i knew i would really enjoy doing but had hereto lacked the motivation to get started on.

here is my incomplete list, and keep in mind that i'm away from home from 9 am - 6:30 pm every day, so my spare time is limited. also, running errands after work is my absolute least favorite thing to do during week, so i really had to push to do things at night --
  • filled in when someone needed me
  • stood in the boiler room for an hour after midnight (more about this in march)
  • on the same night, unclogged 3 toilets (diddo)
  • on the same night, cleaned up barf in 3rd floor bathroom (diddo)
  • walked to market
  • took bus instead of cab
  • dealt with utah license
  • read sunday school lesson
  • played piano in relief society
  • tracked eating
  • learned more about nutrition
  • listend to my body
  • talked about church to people
  • tried patience
  • cut down snacking
  • went to lunch presentation
  • furthered new friendships
  • read ali edwards's blog (almost couldn't handle it)
  • talked to people when i didn't want to
  • walked past metro center to gallery place
  • stopped by library to get books
  • organized supply binder
  • found Bishopric member to give tithing to
  • turned in settlement form
  • returned phone calls (i hate talking on the phone!)
  • returned emails (struggle with this as well)
  • 5 loads of laundry
  • 2 trips to dmv
  • worked on motivation at work
  • ran errands after work twice in one week, more times after that
  • went to stake conference
  • made collage
  • did research on buying new computer
  • did research on buying new camera
  • learned more about digital photography
  • moved occasional chair to basement
  • set up table
  • organized craft supplies
  • got mom's package ready
  • downloaded fonts
  • downloaded inspiration photos
  • organized photo files
  • organized desktop icons
  • went through books again
  • researched this, and that, and that, and more of this...
  • changed bare minerals subscription
  • pulled clothes, folded and bagged them
  • weeded through toiletries
  • put toiletries in shoe organizer
  • blogged
  • read and commented on blogs
  • went to a church activity at another ward
  • 3 loads of laundry
  • organized resolutions into chart
  • formatted, printed, posted chart
  • cut 30+ Easter cards
  • worked on design for Easter cards
  • taught myself how to download fonts
  • made bed most mornings
  • cleaned room repeatedly, day in and day out
  • cut down Easter cards
  • downloaded more fonts
  • designed v-day cards
  • unsubscribed email address from annoying messages
  • filed important papers
  • redesigned v-day cards
  • made v-day cards
  • addressed and sealed v-day cards
  • organized address labels
  • 5 loads of laundry
  • swiffered floors repeatedly
  • multiple trips to get water
  • multiple trips up and down the stairs (4 flights!)
  • planned lunches
  • shopped for lunches
  • worked overtime
  • covered bulletin board
  • hung bulletin board
  • made lists and more lists and more lists to stay organized
  • took photos downtown day before inauguration
  • walked to inauguration
  • stood outside for hours for inauguration
  • walked to american history museum
  • went to Bishop's appointment after work
  • raced home when needed
  • mailed things
  • returned things
  • set appointments
  • organized desk
  • tried early morning workouts
  • recommitted to work (a lot of specific tasks associated with this one that i won't bore you with)
  • weeded closet again
  • studied style principles
  • looked thoroughly for right pair of shoes
  • road bus multiple times
  • loaded more, yes, more fonts
  • wrote
  • read
  • solved major portion of computer problem
  • organized night stand
  • kept receipts
  • asked for help
  • organized ribbon
  • got money for cabs
  • fought again bad attitudes
  • tried new hair styles
  • attended to beauty routine
  • fought to stay happy
  • organized craft supplies (again)
  • designed shelves!

my approach to work this month has been to get the job done. my personal mantra was 'pound the pavement', hence the picture. i walked, road the bus, metro, and cabs, everywhere i needed to go in this city. at home i pushed, pulled, cleaned, weeded, folded, organized, sweated, wrote, solved, lifted, carried, fixed, mopped, and heartily prayed my way through the month.

what a month.

next up, i'm going to keep on with the physical and task-oriented nature of work, but i have a feeling february is going to take a more spiritual turn...