Sunday, November 30, 2008

Thanksgiving Weekend

We were lucky enough to have two delicious Thanksgiving dinners this year. And each were enjoyable for their own reasons. On Thursday, we headed down to San Diego to spend some time with Husband's side of the family. Several of his uncles, aunts and cousins were there and it was fun seeing everyone again. We usually only see his Dad's side of the family a couple times a year (if that) so it was good to get caught up. Dinner was great and the hosts are always nice about letting so many people invade their home.

We stayed the night in San Diego at a Vagabond Inn (slightly scary) so that we could get an early start the next morning to Utah. Our plan sort of worked - we were out of bed by 6:30am, but by the time we showered, got our stuff together and had breakfast, we didn't hit the road until 9:30am. The trip felt long and we hit some traffic here and there, but besides being bored and having to stop every hour so Hubby could pee, it went fine. The fam is all doing well. My mom and step-dad were on a special diet the last couple months and both lost a significant amount of weight, so they just look awesome! Happy and healthy for sure. My nephew is cute as ever - running around, climbing on everything, giving kisses, throwing fits, clapping and imitating animal noises. I couldn't get enough of him. I still don't think he understands that I'm the same Aunt from all the pictures, but he warmed up to me pretty fast. I miss him already! Here he is really taking advantage of the toy box.

We didn't get to stay long in Utah. We arrived at like 6pm on Friday and were out of there by 9:30pm on Saturday, but that was just because we knew we could avoid the traffic if we left a day early. It was worth it. The last time I drove home on a Thanksgiving weekend, it took over 10 hours. Its just exhausting when the normal trip is only 6 hours. So by leaving the night before, we saved ourselves quite a bit of time.

But the short time we were there, we had fun as usual. Saturday afternoon was our Thanksgiving dinner #2 and it was seriously the bomb. The turkey was so good and the peach cobbler for dessert! Oh, I could have just died. Besides stuffing ourselves, we mostly just hung out, and that was just what we needed.

So much to be thankful for:

Etc, etc, etc... On to the next holiday!

My Visual Personality

This was kind of fun. Just pick pictures that appeal to you and it will give a description of your personality:

Youniverse Personality TestYouniverse Personality Test

Monday, November 24, 2008

Sista Love Too!

My sister wrote the sweetest blog entry about none other than ME. So here's a little shout-out to you, sissy:

As I read your blog, I was laughing and crying at the same time. You got me a little veklempt on that one. I have missed you terribly lately. You have been through a lot the last couple years, and you are doing your best, but it has also been hard. Our relationship has changed and I know you have new priorities. Sometimes its hard for me to let go of the "little sister" and I get very sentimental thinking about the good ol' days. I don't feel like I know you as well as I used to, but I know we've got a lot of great years ahead of us and many new memories to make. You are raising a beautiful baby boy all on your own and have been a great Mommy. At the same time, that also means you had to quickly become a grown-up. I know you aren't the same person - I see it in your eyes. But how can you be? You have a whole new world of responsibilities and challenges that I can't begin to imagine. I just don't ever want you to forget about your awesome self and where you came from, not to mention your sweet spirit that will be there no matter where life goes.

*When Mom and Dad brought you home from the hospital, I couldn't wait to hold you. I remember crying when they took you away from me and put you in brother's arms for a picture. A couple weeks later, the jealousy started kicking in. But it didn't last long. I just loved you to pieces from day one.
*Beach days, Kiddie Pools, Slip 'N' Slides
*You always had disheveled hair and a smudge of dirt on your face.
*Your birthdays were probably more fun for me than you.
*Doing your hair and make-up. Even now, I still love doing that. Its so fun when you have a pretty, pretty guinea pig!
*You have a competetive nature, and I quickly learned to stay out of your way during a loss.
*You get me (and humor my wacky ways).
*You are so smart.
*You are funny.
*You are beautiful.
*You are strong.
*Karaoke to "I've Had the Time of My Life"
*Darren's Dance Grooves
*Surfin' USAaaaaaaa
*What in the heck is a jinglebox?
*Roadtrips and concerts (we gotta do one soon!)

I still feel guilty for losing it when you called me a cow, getting pissed when you got the same shoes as me, starting the Pita nickname just to make you upset, pushing you to your "sensitivity level" as much as possible, and punching you really hard while you were sleeping. I also remember thinking about cutting your bangs off, but luckily couldn't bring myself to do it. I was such a mean older sister, and I'm glad that as adults we can laugh about it and you still want to be my friend!

I also hope you know that you can talk to me about ANYTHING and while we may not always agree, I will always love you and respect your decisions. Bottom line - the memories and love we share will always be ours to cherish. The sister bond is one that everyone knows about, but few get to share. I hope that it never goes away. Can't wait to see you and give you a squeeze!

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Why Blog?

So my cousin brought up a good point in her blog and it really got me thinking. She was asking WHY do people blog? Is it for journaling purposes or to keep your family updated? Is it to look like a deep thinker? Is it to entertain people? Are we really being honest in our blogs or fluffing it up to make our lives look all pretty when they aren't necessarily so?

Good question! I guess its a little of all of the above. I always told my husband it was like keeping a journal, but I do like to share my entertaining stories and keep my family updated too. We are spread all over the place and I don't even know that anyone reads it on a regular basis, but I pretend they might. However, I feel like I do have a bad habit of sorts. There are some blogs I can't stand to read because they are filled with fluff - but I think I do that sometimes too. I don't have a lot of the same challenges that mothers or families have on a daily basis, but when I do have personal struggles I like to leave those out or just make a side note - to not dwell on the subject. I have even written really negative blog entries that are still in my drafts because while I don't like fluff, I don't like people who whine either. I guess there are some fine lines.

I've noticed that this has been a habit in my life for a long, long time. (And it's not just in journals). But yes, even looking back at my old journals I have always made things sound a little nicer than what I'm actually thinking or feeling. The meanest thing I remember writing (off the top of my head) was when I was 8 years old: "I hate my family (but not really)." I completely remember thinking If I hate them, are they going to be taken away from me? So I put a retraction in there, just in case God saw and wanted to teach me a lesson.

But my cousin is right, if we not only share the good times, but also the struggles we have, it might help others who are reading. Because we all have hard times and who wants to read about someone else's "awesome" life when you don't feel like yours is going so great? So while I continue to update with the fun things I'm up to, I will also try to be a little more honest when I'm faced with challenges. Not just to help others, mostly to help myself.

Let's keep this going: Why do YOU blog?

Monday, November 17, 2008

Photo Opps

Besides shopping for a few hours with my husband (that never happens. His shopping stamina is usually 30 minutes MAX), the best thing I did this weekend was ride the subway over to downtown LA to witness the Equality Rally and March. This was a huge protest that was put together by the people who oppose Prop 8. Hubs and I had heard about it and thought it would be interesting to see, but when it came time to get out of bed on Saturday, we were having second thoughts. Eventually, we got up and decided to get our butts down there anyway.

We didn't go there to make any type of statement, just knew it would be a great opportunity for some pictures. And it was. Regardless of all the opinions flying around about this proposition, the main thing for me was that it was just really overwhelming and intense to see so many people gathered together for one purpose. I had never seen anything like that! I was worried it might turn into some religion-bashing event, but it wasn't like that at all. There are actually a lot of spiritual gay people out there. Sure, there are also those that had mean things to say about the Mormons or Catholics, but that was not the overall vibe of the day. Everyone was so nice and supportive of each other. Straight or gay, there were lots and lots of people showing their support. I felt very humbled being part of something so much bigger than myself.

I don't know if the proposition should be overturned, because Californians have already voted on it twice, but I don't really believe this prop should have ever been on the ballot in the first place. It's such a tough issue. But that's just me and there I go stating my opinions again. But, really it was a cool experience and something I won't soon forget.

Other good stuff this weekend:
Gap Friends and Family Coupons
Quantum of Solace
Soft Tacos
Reserved Seating at movie theaters
Baby Mama
Mervyn's Going Out of Business Sale
Coach 25% off Coupon
Not cleaning like I was supposed to
Sour Patch Kids
Gadoo snuggles
Bob's Big Boy

Bad things:

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Now I Want to Post Mine Too!

I did these awhile ago, but didn't know what to do with them. After cracking up at Amy and Stacey's pics, I decided to put them on the blog too. Honestly, I wish my hair had been that big in the 80's:

Monday, November 10, 2008

Beware of Icy Conditions

One of our buddies just graduated from Le Cordon Bleu - the CHEF school. How cool is that? I can't wait until he makes me dinner.

Anyway, to celebrate the occasion, his very sweet girlfriend planned a little surprise dinner with all the friends at Mi Piace. The surprise did not go according to plan as only 4 of the 9 guests were on time. (I guess LA traffic is always a valid excuse. Even on a Saturday night.) So that was a little disappointing, but overall I think he enjoyed the idea of the surprise. After a big, tasty meal, we went for a very fun session of ice skating. I honestly can't remember the last time I went ice skating. Possibly 1998 when I was living in Provo? It couldn't have been that long ago... Regardless, it was good practice for when I go ice skating at Rockafellar Center next month! Luckily we didn't have any spills, but it was fun watching the people who've never been ice skating before (like my brother) hanging on for dear life around every turn.

Speaking of ice, I have been acting like an ice queen lately. I've been noticing that I'm very easily irritated and have no patience for anything or anybody. This has been going on for like 2 weeks, I think. So I tried figuring out what has changed in the last couple weeks and realized my mood imbalances are from my allergy medicine! Just recently, my doctor told me to start taking Zyrtec or Claritin to help with my asthma symptoms. I started taking Zyrtec first, but it was causing restless nights - lots of trouble sleeping. So I tried Claritin. This has similar side effects, but didn't seem to be as severe. I thought I'd check WebMD anyway, just to see if these medicines can cause grumpiness or depression and sure enough - both of them can cause "Mood/Mental Changes". I guess that can go along with almost any new medication. So now what? I want to be able to breathe, but I don't want to be the ice queen! I'm a nice girl, I swear.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

NYC, Here We Come!

So hubs and I just booked our flight to New York City!!! We are flying a red-eye in early December and oh, there is just so much I want to do there! I hope we can squeeze it all into 3 days. Neither of us have ever been, so we are super excited! See?

We even went a little cross-eyed. Anyway, I know its going to be freezing, (luckily I totally think ahead and already bought a fabulous jacket just in case the trip worked out) but we'll get to see the Christmas tree at Rockefeller Center and the Statue of Liberty and the Empire State Building. Oh my gosh - I can hardly contain myself.


Wednesday, November 5, 2008

So Let's Talk Politics

I am not a political person, by any means. I have a hard time keeping propositions straight and don't really know where I stand on a lot of issues. I feel the Democrats and Republicans are so far removed from each other and I'm sort of in the middle with a lot of their ideas. So how do you choose a side? Well, I didn't. I'm not registered to vote. I know, I know. It's insane, but it has never interested me in the least. And I would rather NOT vote than be one of the many, many uneducated voters who vote just for the sake of it and have no real knowledge of how their choice will affect the population. Plus I was trying to avoid getting called for jury duty.

I knew that if I didn't vote, I also had no right to complain. Which was fine with me. We all knew Bush was sort of an idiot, so everyone did the complaining for me. I kind of think the role of President of the United States of America is a lot of hype anyway. They have to go through so many people to get anything accomplished that they can't exactly run the country on their own. Which is also the beauty of America. I wouldn't want to live in some sort of dictatorship or something like that, but so much effort and so many details go into running their campaigns - and a lot of promises are made that they are not even sure they can keep.

I'm going to complain this one time and then you will never hear about it again - here in California, we passed a proposition to possibly make a bullet train to San Francisco when we don't have very good public transportation in our own cities. We passed a proposition to give farm chickens more rights. And we passed a proposition that takes away the civil rights of gay people. Chickens - 1 Humans - 0. I just think it's a little hypocritical for a state that is supposedly so "Liberal". I'm not against the chickens by any means. Poor little guys. But we should probably focus on treating human beings more equally, before we start humanizing the chickens that we eat. I'm just saying.

But I will also say this. If any election has raised my awareness in politics, and made me even consider registering to vote - it was this one. Every weekend for the past 2 months, no matter how hard we tried to avoid it, we ended up talking politics with our friends. My hubs was really interested in the issues this year and talked to me about them all the time. I never chose a side, but insisted on asking a lot of dumb questions. And there was this excitement in the air. People are desperate for a change. I can't blame them and I hope with all my heart that Obama doesn't let them down.

Monday, November 3, 2008

The Halloween Party I Went To Was Extra Scary...

So Halloween weekend. Not as exciting as one would hope. It was more exciting shopping at the thrift store for the last bits of my costume, than to go out on Halloween night. I was a Disneyland Tourist (notice the amazing fanny pack?)

Unfortunately, we ended up at a party with a bunch of 19-21 year olds. Enough said there. We were so tired since it was the end of the week anyway, we just couldn't deal with that nonsense. I think we were home in bed by midnight. Saturday we got together with the group again and had a lot more fun bowling, drinking hot chocolate and eating Bob's. It had been a-raining all day and it was a lovely evening. Last night we had a few people over for food and poker and it was a good way to wrap things up before the new week began.

The real exciting news is that there is a possibility we will be going to New York City in the next couple months. The Hubs and I had planned on going there for Christmas, but after adding up the flight, hotels, food, etc. we determined it would just be too expensive. Especially for that time of year. But one of my best girlfriends from Utah and her husband have family there, so we might have a place to stay, not to mention some great company! Which would give us a break on the most expensive part of the trip - the accommodations. Now I don't want to build it up too much, in case it can't happen. But it IS a possibility and that's good enough for me right now. Details to follow!!