Friday, October 31, 2008

I can can.

Before we leave October, I feel I should mention that I had my first experience with canning.
Mother bought a lot of pears, and we got to business. I was surprised to find that it was extremely easy. It wasn't a hard process at all. You just need a lot of gadgets and gizmos.

I think I thought it was a difficult process because home-makers can, and they do other difficult things like watch after their children and also bake things. (Baking isn't entirely that difficult. The difficult part is getting over the waste of time that I feel it is because the result of baking is almost always something that is bad for you.)

Anyway, my eyes have been opened. I can can. I can can if I want to.

Thursday, October 30, 2008

A Video

So, I received a link to a video on Prop 8 in my inbox today. I have received many a video in my inbox. Sometimes I go to them, sometimes I don't. This time, I decided I wanted to.

And I found a funny guy. I love funny! (His face does all sorts of neat tricks too.)

Check it out.

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

Phoenix: The reveal

Something that I miss from our trip to Phoenix was how the food would just appear. It was like Hogwarts, really. We would all be tired and hungry, and suddenly, we would walk outside and there Mom would be with our meal! It was wonderful! I've tried walking outside since being home looking for an entire meal, but all I found was a garden.

Look how happy Dad is with his food:

We all felt like that.

And, some of the crew. This was on Sunday, so Paul and Marissa had already left. Maybe I can Photoshop them into a group picture.

Mary and I.

And our dear mothers. Please note the clean and freshly painted wall behind them. The wall in the back is green, and the wall to the side is white. When the G's saw it, it took them awhile before they said, "Now, this wall right here is a shade or two different from the other walls, is that right?"

Great-Grandma is reacting to her new toilet:

She clearly loves it. She kept talking about how she loves that the seat and the floor are both wood.

Now, there is a step going from the kitchen to the sun room, and it has been causing some trouble in the house. So, Bobby, Aunt Joyce's good-looking boyfriend, fashioned them a railing. Here it is:

And this is Great Grandma's reaction to such a railing:

Seeing how we had just spent all of our waking hours cleaning up dirt from the past 20 years, we made sure the G's would know how to care for their new home.

We gave them a Swiffer. And here is Grandma trying it out:

Dad was too dirty to come in.

Great Grandma has about a million things we didn't see the purpose for. But she also has about a million things that we thought she might want to keep. So we had to ask her about them. I took this picture from outside so I wouldn't accidentally get bossed around.

I was cleaning out some of Great Grandma's stuff and came across a New Testament from 1904 and some other books. I put a note on them explaining that I would like them. Mary found a handbag she liked and put her name on it, and Aunt Linda wrote her name all over the back of a mirror she wanted.

I planted a few notes around so hopefully Great Grandma will see them and think, "Oh, Myriah really wants this book. I'll ship it to her."

And here we have Grandpa in the living room. It is so much cleaner and nicer now. We also were able to score them some slightly used furniture. Furniture I wasn't afraid to sit on.

I hope everyone was happy with the reveal pictures. If not, you are just going to have to go out to Phoenix and check things for yourself because this is all I've got.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Charles in Charge

One of the excellent things about Netflix is the ability to immediately watch some items on my computer. I wanted to try it out and came across Charles in Charge. I vaguely remember thinking Charles in Charge was an "okay" show when I was little, but now I have decided it is fabulous.


1) It is hilarious. The kids are so crazy and the lines are fresh. (or old. but fresh. whatev.)
2) I love Charles' thought process.
3) Scott Baio is very attractive. I don't say that about celebrities very often, but Scott Baio in his Charles years is most excellent.

So, last night I discovered that Charles was with one family the first season and with a different family the second. I have no memory of this first family, but I sure like them.

I kept watching and watching. I checked the time on my computer every so often, and around midnight realized my computer had decided to end day light savings time a week early. I thought is was midnight, but it was actually 1 in the morning.

I think I could have watched Charles in Charge all night long.

Sunday, October 26, 2008

Two things

Two things happened tonight.

1) Grandma announced that her brain only processes 50 percent of what she hears.

2) Mary and I signed up for Netflix.

Phoenix: The Work

We just rolled into town . The G's had cleared out this sun room pretty well, but you may notice the water damage and the dirt and the gross that we needed to clean up. Please notice the flooring. That had to come up too.

The living room. This carpet is about a million years old. It's all loosey-goosey too. As far as I can remember, the carpet has always had the wrinkle in it. Mostly it is disgusting. We went crazy ripping that stuff up. We were so focused on getting it out of the house that we took zero pictures of the great carpet removal.

The living room after we ripped up the carpet and then moved all the furniture into it.

So, mostly, Paul removed all the linoleum flooring, and it ended up like this:

The floor was super sticky and my shoes are still filthy. I'm not sure what to do with them now. I may throw them away.

Basically, it was a ton of work to get done in 3.5 days. But we did it. It was hot and sweaty and noisy. I spent most of my time in closets, ripping up carpet, and doing general demolition to prepare for the new floors and base boards. Whoever put the baseboards in the closets originally was very concerned that they didn't fall down. I pulled out about 5 nails where one would do. They also thought it would be a good idea to use 2 inch nails. Really, guys? Closets don't allow for much leverage, which the original builders found out, because about half of those unnecessary nails were bent all funny and twisted and otherwise tormented, which would probably explain the excess of nails.

The above is a picture of the kitchen, with Mary working in the background.
Below we find Mary's mom painting. (She has some sort of fancy positive/negative patch on her arm that she got at physical therapy.)

Paul and Tom laying some floor.
Aunt Joyce and I painting.

Paul working with a saw and fractions. He and the other "floor guys" were always muttering fractions under their breath. They thought it was cool.

Cleaning up some of the sticky.

Dad painting.

Mary painting.

And Marissa and Audrey swimming and maxin' and relaxin' at the pool.

I hope you notice the irony.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

More Phoenix

I think my parents go to Phoenix once a year.
I think.
I haven't made the journey for a few years.
Sure, I once flew down there and met everyone and then we all traveled home together. I remember this because that was the year I got sick and Great-Grandma gave me expired Pepto-Bismo and I was still sick and couldn't manage to actually puke in the toilet and also Brandon got all vomity when we made it back home. Remember that, Brandon?

Anyway, the point is that I kind of forgot what the drive to Phoenix looks like.

Well, it looks like this:

This time, we made it to Phoenix, stopped by the G's house (that is Great-Grandma, Grandpa and Grandma's house), took a look at the freaking awesome rental, and then went to the grocery store. My mother was in charge of one thing this trip: food. She was a little concerned about making it all happen, and was rather stressed, so my cousin Mary, her mother and I went along to help my mother at the store.

You'll notice Mom and Mary working on some produce. I had the job of picking up some oranges. Aunt Linda decided to help by talking on the phone. This was her 4th phone call, and we had only been in the store for about 5 minutes.

I will get to the actual work of the trip later, but what? What is this next picture you ask?

Well it's the Ball family plus me! Yup, those fine people came up from Tucson on Saturday night, dropped their young one off with me and went to the temple. I took good care of Lillian and sent her over to the neighbors house (who happen to be Great-Gma's 2nd cousin or something...) where we got Easter M&M's. I was waiting for my mother to come because she was going to pick up Lillian, take her to the rental and I was going to do some painting at the G's house.

As Lillian found herself in a strange land and her parents just deserted her, she clung to me for dear life and kept saying, "Riah, Riah." I wasn't sure how the hand off to Mom might go, but the Easter M&M's helped a little bit. She still had her reservations about this whole thing, though. Soon Mom came back with Marissa and Audrey, Lillian and Audrey are now best friends, Lillian remembered my mother, and she was good to go.


I also wanted to give a shout-out to the Balls for sleeping in the living room even though Grandpa gets up at 4 in the morning, makes a lot of noise, and umm... somehow I forgot to mention that?

Sorry about that. Way to duke it out.

The next morning we went to Church, hung out, ate lunch, and then took that picture. Amanda and Lillian are still in their Sunday finery, Tyler is in his driving clothes, and I am ready to go back to work at the G's house. I am wearing my "Technical Team" t-shirt that I got at a temp job. I am also standing a little distance away from the family so they can easily cut me out of the picture and they can have a nice keepsake. I figured, seeing how they have done that once, they might want to do it again.


The trip to Phoenix was a blast. It was so fun. I had a great time.

So, a few months ago, Paul and Marissa were planning a trip to visit mom's parents and her grandma who all live in the same house in Phoenix. We decided it would be fun to visit then as well.

Around that time, Grandma was discovered as having some medical problems. She's the kind of person who always does things for other people and hates to be taken care of. So she had been taking care of her husband and mother-in-law for years, but hadn't been taking care of herself.

Well things got pretty bad for Grandma, and basically everything was falling apart over there in Phoenix. Mom flew out there in August to help out for about two weeks, and all of her other siblings took turns as well. Mom would have many conversations with her sisters about what was going on, if the doctors had finally figured out what the problem was, and what they could do to help their parents.

Many things were discussed, and I have no idea what those things were. I was continually in the dark about all of this. Sometimes I would try to ask questions and figure it all out, but that was basically impossible because things were changing every day. So, I stopped asking questions and decided I would be informed if anything major happened.

About two weeks before our trip to Phoenix I was informed that we would not just be "visiting" but we would be cleaning. Working. Ripping up the old disgusting carpet and putting in new flooring. Organizing. Painting. Throwing things away. It was discovered that Grandma's problems were mainly respiratory, and the old disgusting carpet probably wasn't helping things.

So, I went on vacation to work.

It was great.

My parents decided (I told mom it was a good idea, and then she informed dad) to rent a house. It was great. This house was wonderful. It was huge and hilarious.

There to greet us at the front door was this pumpkin riding the giant snail:

The inside of the house was great. Getting to most of the bedrooms was an adventure because you had to go through the lollipop forest.

You may notice in this next picture that Scott is the winner. I should tell you that Paul is actually taller than Scott, but we didn't mark Paul's height on the wall. You may also notice this excellent blue paint. The previous home owners loved this color. It was everywhere. The entire kitchen was this color. In fact, I was standing in the kitchen, wearing a blue sweatshirt, and nobody could see me because I fit in so well with my surroundings.

This is Camelback Mountain. The tall part is the hump. This was the view from the front of our rental.
And this is the view from the back of the house. You may notice they chose not to landscape with rocks as many Arizona home-owners do. You may also notice the pool! Yup, we swam in that sucker every night after working. It was great.

Paul tried to teach me to swim the butterfly. I don't know how well I did though.

Okay, that is all for right now because I am tired. I have a lot more on the subject of Phoenix, so I will post later.

Peace out.

Monday, October 13, 2008

Apricot Jams

It's time to update my iTunes.
I am very excited.
I am ready for some new jams to come my way.

So, any suggestions?

What jams are you listening to?

You have about 24 hours to respond, because I need to get them suckers loaded onto the iPod before our trip to Phoenix on Wednesday.

Thursday, October 9, 2008

It's laminated. What a deal!

I'm so happy right now.

I just bought myself a world map.

Or course, I had the option of buying a world map shower liner, but I went with the regular map.

I hope I won't regret it.

Saturday, October 4, 2008

"So, what have you been up to?"

Well it happened again.

And because it happened again, I have decided that any time I go to the video store, I must look good, unless it was obvious that I had just been working out.

I saw two people from high school last night. Not just any two people, but people that I have spent many an hour with in band. People whose opinions I value. But did I look good? No.

At least I was dressed.

See, the thing is, whenever I feel like getting a movie, I'm usually always practically ready for bed. This means face washed, in pajamas, just running to the video store really quickly. Oh, and hair all willy-nilly. My hair is usually willy-nilly in events such as these. And somehow, somehow, I always see someone from high school. Always.

This happens in other areas of my life as well. I usually see someone I went to high school with come into my work about once every two weeks. On the days that I just roll out of bed are usually the days that I see one of my classmates. So, about a month ago, I decided on a more concentrated effort to get completely ready before work. I find this is a hassle sometimes, but always worth it in the long run. It's better to be prepared, I think.

Anyway, I'm a little upset by this. Mostly because I don't want to get re-dressed to get a video, and also because when I see someone from high school, the question "So, what have you been up to?" always arises.

What am I suppose to say to that?

I better have something great to say because they are probably thinking, "Man, she has really let herself go. Can't even get dressed to go to the video store."

Wednesday, October 1, 2008


I'm usually itching for the first of the month so I can turn my calendar. I love putting away the old month and flipping to a new picture. I love it. I also like to get a visual of how the days are laid out for the month. Maybe take a look at what numbers correspond with the weekends. It helps me to get oriented. I feel much more peace in my life when I do this.

I woke up this morning, and realized I hadn't updated my calendars yet. It was a weird feeling. Kind of like panic. For some reason, they still haven't been turned. This is strange, not only because I love to turn the calendars, but because I have been thinking about ordering my 2009 Far Side. I have been getting The Far Side mini wall calendar for about 4 years now, and have no intention of changing. So, with all this thinking about calendars, you would think I would think to turn them.

"Them?!" you ask?

Well, yes, actually.

I have four wall calendars in my room. One on the way out of my room, one by my desk, one by my mirror, and one by my bed. They are of temples, The Far Side, a custom number by Tara, and a free one I got at Miner's Hardware.

But that darn Miner's Hardware one fell behind my bed last night. It's done this before. I was too lazy to dig it out for about 10 days, and those were some of the craziest inner turmoil mornings. I would wake up, look for the date on my calendar, see nothing but wall, and get a mild anxiety attack.

I don't understand all this, I just live with it.