Tuesday, August 26, 2008


I'm going to be taking some time off for a while... no new posts. But I'll be back, you'll know it when you start to see my crazy comments again on your own blogs!

Sunday, August 24, 2008


My darling daughter Kaylee is such a creative little girl, and she made up a Gal's Tag. Her inspiration came from her dad after he created a guy's only tag and tagged the three other guys he knows that blog. Kaylee tagged me, so here goes...

When was the last time you had a pedicure? Um, before Memorial Day
What is you're favorite drink? Fresh squeezed juice
What's you're fave piece of clothing? My new P.J.s
What's you're fave Holiday? Halloween!
When is you're Birthday(optional)?(month & date only) July 28th
Do you have kids(optional)? Yep- two
One thing that's on you're Bucket List? Live by the ocean
Fave pair of shoes? My Flip flops
What color do you like on you're toes? Anything bright and happy!
How many animals do you have? Me personally? None, but my kids have a lot!
Last Vaca? AZ. and LV.
What 'Theme' is you're room? Jungle?
Do you think this is a stupid tag? No
Do you believe in 'Girl Power'? Amen!
What's you're fave color? Hmmm... green or purple
What color is you're hair? Heinz 57 right now :)
Do you like to wear Make-up? I feel it a necessity at my age!
How much do you weigh(optional)? I hope I weigh less than last week (crossing fingers)
Fave animal? Dog
What is you're fave food? Haagen Dazs
Are you good at Guitar Hero/Rock Band? I'm good at singing the 80' hair band songs.

Now I tag anyone who reads my blog, is a "gal", and wants to have a little fun!

Thursday, August 21, 2008


I've heard it said many ways... less is more, recycle/reuse, everything in moderation, voluntary simplicity. Less is more has pretty much been the theme we've chosen for 2008. I'll tell you something, saying it is much easier than doing it! We do have a plan, a whole family plan, that we have been working towards, and I have been blogging a bit about. And we each have our own little areas that we are working on separately.

So... as the eighth month of 2008 begins to wind down, it's time for me to tackle what I KNOW will be my most difficult task this year. I cannot procrastinate any longer. I have to get healthy. Getting healthy for me includes, losing weight, making healthy dietary choices, reducing stress, and establishing a regular exercise routine. I know, I know, I made it sound like I was facing some kind of insurmountable life obstacle... like maybe my life depended on it. But, in a way, that's not too far from the truth. Everyone experiences stress, everyone manifests the effects of stress differently, and everyone deals with their stress in slightly different ways. I EAT! Food is my drug of choice. As soon as I tell myself a certain type of food is off limits, that food becomes the one I gobble down after a stressful day. Of course the foods that are deemed off limits are never fruits and veggies, they are sweets, and unhealthy fats, and junk food! We all know the result of gobbling down unhealthy stuff, in unhealthy amounts, is weight gain. So I have gobbled myself up to 147 lbs., which is just a number, because 147 lbs. is a healthy weight for someone. But for me, at just under 5 feet 1 in. tall, with a medium/small frame, 147 lbs. is not a healthy weight. I need to be closer to 110-120 lbs. to be healthy for me. Do the math, and I'm looking at at total weight loss of 30-35 lbs., give or take. I've been successful at weight loss in the past, temporarily, and in smaller amounts. This task does seem insurmountable to me. I feel like I'm standing at the bottom of a steep cliff, with little climbing experience, and limited equipment, but somehow I have to make it to the top. And to make the climb seem even more difficult, it's a cliff I've attempted to climb several times before, and fallen back down each time. This time I need to get to the top, this time I need to stay there. It's not a life or death thing, but it is a quality of life thing. My quality of life, going forward, depends on my ability to be successful at making these life changes. Notice I said life changes. This time, it has to be a forever thing, these changes need to last a lifetime.

So... what's my plan? LESS IS MORE, RECYCLE/REUSE, EVERYTHING IN MODERATION, VOLUNTARY SIMPLICITY!!! Yep, that's the plan. Actually it's a little more involved than just a few catchy phrases, but it's a lot less involved than many of the other failed plans I've had in the past. When eating a meal, I will be eating less. When making a healthy dish, I'll make extra to have later on, at the end of a stressful day when I don't feel like making something healthy. I'm not going to outlaw any certain foods, but I will have a bite of dessert, instead of a whole serving. And most of what I will be eating will be whole, healthy, easy stuff. Like fresh fruits and veggies. The only preparation needed for fruits and veggies is to wash them. Exercise is not something I hate, so that's a good thing, but it does get brushed aside when I am really busy. My plan for exercise is to keep my daily life simple enough so that I can put exercise first. Sounds do-able, right? Oh wait, we haven't talked about stress yet... Keeping my stress levels under control will be the key to my success. So while I may have the exercise and diet plan all laid out and ready to go, I am still in the working things out stage of my stress management plan. Why so much stress? That's a bees' nest that certainly deserves it's own post, probably more than one.

So... I am on day three. I have two successful days behind me. Day three is is said to be one of the hardest, so I woke up with that in mind. I feel pretty good though, still determined. Oh, and I forgot to mention that the reason I've decided to blog about something that is obviously a little humiliating, somewhat private, and has the potential to open up my weaknesses to so many more people, is that I'm hoping that it will encourage me not give up!

p.s. I have to admit that my sis-in-law Jenifer's post about being a "roll model" was a partial reminder that I needed to kick this plan into gear. I was sitting on the floor, cross-legged, not long after reading the post, and thought, "I AM a roll model!"

Tuesday, August 19, 2008


It was quite a weekend we had. We covered many miles in just three days, visited with family, missed visiting with family, cried till it hurt, and laughed till we cried. We learned that Phoenix really IS that hot during the summer, and that Vegas still attracts millions of visitors... even when it feels as hot as Hell (yes, I am referring to the actual place).

Some of the highlights were:

Watching the sunrise from I-15
Flagstaff in summer- it's beautiful!
Dinner with the Woodards
Staying at the Palazzo Hotel in Las Vegas
Blue Man Group show

Thanks to the Woodards for hosting us, yet again!

We've had many people ask what would make us want to visit two of the hottest cities in the U.S. during mid-summer, and if and when I feel like I can talk/blog about the whys, I will do it.

Thursday, August 14, 2008


Courage is to feel the daily daggers of relentless steel and keep on living. ~Douglas Malloch

I've been taking a little time this week to think about being brave, and what exactly courage is. I don't think it's all heroes and fantastic stories, I think it might just being a little more ordinary than that. I think that maybe, some of courage's best friends may be tears, anger, and fear. I've thought about my mom after Jamie died and how she cried bitter, angry, tears everyday for weeks and months, yet still managed to pull herself out of bed each morning to face another day. I've thought about my friend Jennifer Jewkes who learned at age 33 she had breast cancer. She fought hard and well and was healthy for five years. I think about how much courage it must take to find out the cancer came back, worse this time, terminal, yet still not accept this fate. To keep fighting and living is what I believe courage is. And, I've thought a lot about my Grandma. I know it must take so much courage to face life after losing her sweetheart. Then to continue to find meaning in life when her body started to fail. And I know she is using all the courage she can muster to face the latest diagnosis she's had this week... incurable, untreatable.

In each case there have been tears, bucket-loads in fact, there has been anger, even bitterness for a time, and there certainly has been fear. But we all just do what needs to be done to get back up off the ground and keep living, don't we? I think bravery plays out every day, in so many lives, and I think that it is one of life's miracles.

So, while I feel I will need some courage this weekend, to face a hard decision, I don't think I have to look very hard for inspiration.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008


Old Baby is what my nephew Kyler used to call Old Navy when he was younger. It's just one of those things that sticks once you hear it. I have been to Old Navy twice in as many days, and as disappointed as I am with myself, I am equally exhilirated at my total savings on what I think are CUTE clothes for my family! So what is this attraction I have to Old Navy? I mean, obviously what they stand for in the world of retail is completely the opposite of what I'm trying to support. However, on the occasions when I've grown weary of online shopping/looking for organic, fair-trade, eco-friendly, non-sweatshop, shapeless, drab colored clothes that are horribly over-priced, Old Navy is my guilty pleasure! One year at the end of summer, I got shorts for 10 cents! As I was trying to justify my shopping spree with the boring eco-conscious other half of me today, my live a little, throw caution to the wind side said, "Hey, maybe the fact that you buy both ways means you are a well-rounded individual." I'm just holding my breath that the stuff I got won't start unraveling and falling apart too soon, so that Miss Granola me won't be like, "Ha! Karma!"

On the brighter side of wholistic living... I was introduced to essential oils years ago, and am still singing their praises today. When you are as sensitive to the entire world as I am, any little luxury is nice to happen upon. I can't wear perfume, hairspray, scented lotions or soaps (some are okay, most are not), and some makeup brands without having reactions either on my skin, or even systemically. A sad irony since I am so scent oriented. For some reason though, I can tolerate essential oils so I use them to give a little fragrance to my bath or lotion. I also use them on my eczema and psoriasis when it flares up, or to soothe a toothache or loosen a chest cold. So this morning after my shower as I was slathering on unscented Lubriderm lotion, scented with clove essential oil, I was so in love with my smell, I thought I should pass it on. Both medicinal, and they smell good! Can't get much better than that.

Sunday, August 10, 2008


I think I may soon be losing a good friend. No real diagnostics have been done, there is not a definite diagnosis, there are just signs. It's the risk we all take, I guess when we branch out and allow relationships to develop in our lives. It's always hard to say goodbye, but more so, I think, depending on the level of the relationship, the time invested. We've spent time together on a daily basis, many a sleepless night have we worked through my "issues". And how can I ever repay the wealth of information I've gained from this too brief, yet infintely meaningful time spent together.

But lately the signs have been all too evident. You are slowing down, not able to perform like you used to, getting sick more often. Many of the treatments are only working temporarily, or sometimes not at all. I know that I will do everything I can to help prolong your life, but eventually the end will come. I hope that we will have enough time to do all the things we need to prepare. I hope that I can glean all the necessary information from you that I will need to carry into my next relationship. I hope that I will be able to find another that will equal, or preferably surpass you and your great qualities. I would like to make just one request, if I could... I beg of you, please, PLEASE, hang in there long enough for me to figure out how to transfer all of my email addresses and contact info before you die!!!

To my sweet Toshiba Satellite L25-1216 laptop computer, I will miss you when you are gone!

Thursday, August 7, 2008

HOT FUDGE and other food analogies

This story begins several weeks ago at Arctic Circle (the fast food restaurant), but has it's real roots in the 1980's during my early teens, growing up with four brothers.

Ice cream is my favorite treat, and while I usually prefer the snobbier side of ice cream, Haagen Dazs and the likes, I'm also a sucker for a hot fudge sundae. A few weeks ago I had just such a hankering, so we made the decision to get dinner from the Arctic Circle drive-thru. The reason I like my sundaes from A.C. is that they include whipped cream, nuts, and a cherry. Not too shabby for fast food, heh? Nuts are what make the sundae in my opinion, so location IS important to me. Our order came out, my sundae was nut-less, the situation had to be corrected. At this point in the story I guess it's relevant to explain how flustered and frustrated Jeff can get sometimes when ordering at a drive-thru, mostly because he is dealing with three other people who are very particular, and require that he make modifications to menu items, in order to get the exact thing they want. He ordered my sundae WITH NUTS, I heard him, so the fact that it was nut-less was the fault of the sundae maker. Jeff was already a bit flustered when he had to knock on the drive-thru window to get the guy's attention. When our young, seemingly naive, and somewhat flustered himself, attendant opened the window, Jeff blurted out, "Do you have nuts?" A long, uncomfortable pause followed. Broken only by my raising of the sundae to show him that what we really meant to say was, "You forgot to put nuts on my sundae." I got my nuts, and we all had a good laugh at Jeff's expense. Hot fudge has more than one meaning in our world, nuts do too. Now anytime someone orders something that could be construed as "dirty", we don't hesitate to make the analogy... Immature? Of course it is, but hey, that's how I was raised! I've mentioned before that I grew up with four brothers, and it had a profound impact on my level of social maturity.

Tonight I was really craving a hot fudge sundae. I've been dieting all week, and could sense that I was teetering on the edge of some kind of breakdown. What I really wanted was Baskin-Robbins or even Arctic Circle, but decided that McDonald's would suffice. "Besides," I told the family, "at least McDonald's has nuts." That's when Brit said, "Yea, don't they have those little nut sacks?" Oh, boy!!! Let the games begin!

Friday, August 1, 2008


One of my favorite things about summer is the chance to see out-of-state relatives. Today was one of those days! My mom's youngest sister, Janelle, lives in San Diego, but makes the journey north just about every summer to visit friends and family in Utah. I got the call this morning that an impromptu all girls lunch was in the works and could I make it. Ummm... will it include yummy, eating out food? Will it be just a bunch of girls? Will we get to escape the clutches of laundry, dirty toilets, and farting dogs for several hours? Oh yes, I can make it! We all met at the Desert Edge Brewery (a.k.a. the Pub) in Trolley Square where the sandwiches are delish! It was a pretty good turn out for such short notice. Those present were: Me mum, Devin's wife Addy (who was brave enough to come out with both her little boys in tow), Aunty Janelle, Cousins Stacy and Brenna, cousin Tim's wife Robyn and their cute as a button little girl, and Kaylee and myself. Food, company and conversation were all great. Although I am rarely short on things to run my mouth about, I'll let the pictures do the rest of the talking...

Fun day!