Sunday, December 30, 2007

In the Marmalade Forest

Today I had the pleasure of attending family ward. Not that I had any choice. It started at 9, but kinda felt like 5:30. It was all dark outside, like the sun didn’t know about today.

This ward has been working on their emergency preparedness. For third hour, they all gathered together, and the man in charge informed everyone that he had split the ward up into sections, based on location of residence. We were given a list of our ward neighbors, and we were suppose to decide on a group leader who would check on everyone in case of emergency, and then report to the man in charge, who would then report to the Bishop, and so on and so forth. There were some jokesters in the audience, who I greatly appreciated. They were not yelled at for having a good time. (I recently was yelled at for having a good time. But not in this ward. We welcome Funny.)

We got our list, and noticed our family was in the “Red” group. After this I kinda dazed out, because they were about to split into groups, and why should I pay attention?

I was soon called back to earth because of my mother.

Well mom gets our list and starts marking on it, and then she gets in the Red group and starts bossing people around. She said, “Okay, I can be in charge of these ten families, I can walk to all of them, and I think you should be in charge of the other ten, because you can walk to all of their houses, and I think we should report to you (she points to a guy who was already agreeing, but I’m pretty sure he doesn’t know what he’s agreeing to, Mom was just so bossy) and I think you should be the one to report to the guy in charge.”

So mom goes up to the guy in charge and says, “This is what the red group has done, is that okay?”

He nods. “Sure, that is great.”

Mom says, “Okay, I was thinking I will need a code name. How about______?”

Right, I know I didn’t tell you guys the code name, but it’s a code name, so of course I can’t tell you. That is for the red group to know only.
(But if you contact me i will totally tell you.)

So anyway, my mom has a code name, a code name she came up with, and I am proud to be her daughter.

Wednesday, December 26, 2007

The Year of the Magnificent Hurl

It is uncertain if my 12 year-old cousin still believes in Santa Claus. I don't know how to go about finding out. But i think the answer is YES. It is tradition/belief that she sprinkles reindeer dust outside on Christmas Eve. This dust, as far as i can tell, is made up of oatmeal, glitter, and of course, magic. This is my first year participating, so i took a picture of my first sprinkle of reindeer dust.

Everyone looks so smashing in their festive red shirts. It is so nice when families are matching.

The Christmas Table.

You'll probably notice all the greenery. I did that. I cut up a pine tree for Christmas dinner.
My brother was so shocked at my plans that he exclaimed, "WHAT!? There is a sacrificial pine tree in the back yard as we speak?!"
He's not an intense tree-hugger or anything, he just likes to exclaim things.

I think for my birthday I'm going to buy my parents matching stemware.

But none of this has anything to do with hurling, does it? (BTW, we watched Curling in High Def the other day. It was illuminating.) I'm sure you saw the title of this post and have been dying to know about the year of the magnificent hurl.

Well, it begins with these two little guys: Taffy and Tobey.

These pictures are really quite unfair, because that picture of Taffy was when she was a puppy, and the picture of Tobey gnawing on the raw hide bone was taken just the other day, and he happens to be in his awkward teenage years. His growing body is still a mystery to him. He is surprised when he lands on the ground sooner than he thought he should. He really is all legs. He has a habit of running 100 miles an hour to jump into your lap, slamming his 20 pound body into your stomach. He is just always so excited to see you, that he is all over the place in excitement.
Well, on Christmas Eve, i was relaxing back at home after sprinkling that reindeer dust, when the dogs decided they wanted to join me on the chair. So they jump up, and begin messing around. They are always play fighting, and this time, Taffy was not in her element. Anyway, Tobey ends up pushing her over the arm rest. She is flying backwards off the chair, and i wasn't sure if she would be able to turn in time, so i reached for her. She did turn just in time, because right before I grabbed her, Taffy vomited. The vomit goes flying through the air, and magnificently lands only on the tile floor. It could have landed on the Santa rug, or the other chair where my sister-in-law was sitting. Taffy could have landed in her own vomit, gotten scared, and ran all through the house tracking vomit behind her. But she didn't.
It was simple flying hurl, but magnificent in it's simplicity.

It was a Christmas miracle.

After English

The title of this post was going to be "Aftermath" because i wanted to show the aftermath of the Big Doings, but then realized that i hate math, so why should i give it such prominence?

The night started off with this kid eating all the popcorn. She has the two fisted method going for her, which is really very smart. No one knows how she got up on the counter, but we do know she ate all the popcorn.

I had to make more.

The evening progressed with a killer paper snowflake making contest, and also the roasting of chestnuts.
As stated previously, i think chestnuts are gross, but decided to give it another whirl. I can no longer look that "chestnuts roasting on an open fire" song in the eye again. I didn't want to be the only one with this problem, so i served chestnuts to my friends, and am pleased to say that one person, after partaking of the chestnut said, "I have no respect for that song anymore." My plan worked brilliantly.

This Christmas party was complete with karaoke, and here mom and i are singing, "For He's a Jolly Good Fellow," which by the way happen to be the only words in the song.
I had no idea.
But mom had never karaoke-d before, so i thought i might start her off on something easy.
She did a great job.

(of a similar, though unrelated event. This was the tree decorating night.)

Friday, December 21, 2007

Big Doings

We have Big Doings in our household today.

1st: There is a kid who looks about 12 (or 20) in my house right now, tapping on the wall, preparing to put holes in our newly painted living room. Father has decided it is high time to get that new TV on the wall and install surround sound. Might as well, right? I was not looking forward to this, because Father wanted to mount that thing as close to the ceiling as possible. After much discussion about how i think Father is crazy for wanting to put the TV where only birds could see it, it was finally agreed upon to put the TV at eye level, and my panic of an eternally kinked neck was relieved.

So here i am, typing away, as the 12 (or 20 year old) goes about making a ruckus. Interesting side note, he mentioned that he has been "doing this kind of thing for ten years." What does that mean? No matter if he is 12 or 20, i would think 10 years ago is still starting a little young. Unless by "doing this thing" he means, "tapping and then putting holes in walls," i suppose he could be correct.

2nd: I am getting kicked out of my room. This happens every so often, and there is usually a great reason. This one comes in the form of my brother and sister-in-law coming for Christmas.
They are also bringing their two dogs, and i dearly love dogs.
Well, most dogs.
So we are expecting them sometime today, hopefully in time for Big Doing number 3.

3rd: After an interesting slight of hand, i decided to host a host-less Christmas party.

At my house.

Where we are expecting family.

And also the 12 or 20 year old is making holes. (And talking on his phone. This is his third conversation since he's been here. Who knows when he will be done?!)

I have a pretty detailed list for what i need to do the second the preteen is out of here to get ready for family and friends. I am kinda just lurking around, waiting for him to be done, so i can start on my list.

I have spent many minutes looking at numerous websites for the proper way to roast a chestnut. Because what is a Christmas party without the roasting of chestnuts? It just so happened that Father had all the appropriate accoutrements for such a roasting, and I'm excited to get started. I have experienced chestnuts only once, and i think they are horrible. But now that i know proper methodology, i think i might like chestnuts this time around. The guy cooking the chestnuts on my one and only experience clearly did not do his research, because he was being silly about his roasting, and now that i know all about it, if i could go back to that guy, i would offer some free advice. Oh well.

There will also be various competitions at this party, some winners and some losers, and probably some karaoke.

It really has all the makings of a great party.
Stay tuned for the aftermath of all of our Big Doings.

Sunday, December 16, 2007


I feel strange.
I can't put my finger on it.
I just feel off.
I was thinking about complaining to all of you about how weird i am feeling, but decided that since i don't actually know what it is that is bothering me, i would just be talking in circles.
But, we can discuss possible reasons:

1) I am reading Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows. That book keeps me on edge, man. Maybe i am just concerned for the welfare of fictional characters in a book i have read twice already.

2) Church was different today. I hate different church. I like it normal. But contrary to my preference, I didn't have to devise ways of avoiding Sunday school, they came to me. People who have been only semi friendly were suddenly full on friendly.
It was weird, and i didn't like it.

Well that is all i can think of.
In an effort to kick this wonky mood, i toured some blogs, and this one did a pretty good job:

But still, i am slightly wonky.
If anyone wants to call me and try to help me out of this strangeness, please do. I hope you can help.


Tuesday, December 11, 2007


A few days before Thanksgiving, mother and i thought it would be a good idea to paint the living room, buy and hang draperies, and purchase an entertainment console. Of course, we were having Thanksgiving at our house, so things needed to look nice. I think it worked out okay:

Some of you history buffs may notice the wall color looks strikingly familiar to another color of another time on the same wall. This is not so. Mother will explain to you that this wall color has a slight tinge of green if you look at it correctly.

Things have changed since Thanksgiving. First, the bowl of California Cuties no longer resides on the entertainment cabinet, and in it's place is a 42 inch flat screen, which basically takes up the space between the lamps. Second, we had a garage sale and ended up getting rid of our couches. Because our new furniture won't be coming until next week, we are currently couch-less, and it is rather depressing.

The day after Thanksgiving included gingerbread house making. It was bunk. It was foolishness. It was sad.

We couldn't find our usual gingerbread house recipe, so we had to settle for another found in Taste of Home magazine. The cookie part of the house ended up more like graham cracker, and the frosting didn't stick. Things were sliding about right and left. You would think you had a wall up, and then you didn't.
Yes, you will see a few houses that made it. We took pictures of those houses. But a few hours later, they were tired and collapsed. So sad.

But we had fun anyway.

Also, Tara is wearing a great towel apron, an apron type i have never seen before. We contemplated making one for grandma to wear when she goes out to dinner, but we figured she would forget it at home, and then cuss about how she left it at home. So maybe she is better without it.

This is mother's fake ginger-bread-more-like-graham-cracker house. You may notice right off the bat that this house doesn't have a door.

Oh, but it does have a door. It's a secret trap door.
Can you spot it?