Friday, December 31, 2010

And YOU can count!

Let me tell you what happened....

I saw that I had done 90 posts this year (whoa) and I decided I want to make it an even 100.  I thought I had a great idea by posting the " 10 Lists of 10 Items for the Last 10 Days of 2010."  Perfect.  Except I started a day early, leaving me with this awkward post on December 31, 2010.  Also awkward, I deleted a post that already existed, knocking down my grand total by another one.  So here, I have decided to re-cap 2010, with its ups and downs, pros and #99 for 2010.

  • I went to San Antonio to get the Texas bug out of my system.  Done and done.
  • I got called as a young women's leader.  I love it.
  • I did a month of love posts.
  • I did all of the stuff over in the "Never Ending To-Done List."
  • My parents moved.
  • Ruthie Pig-Face Draper and I met and also parted.
  • I attended the Utah Republican Convention as a state delegate.
  • I went to girls' camp!
  • I painted my house.  There's still lots to do.
  • I had lots of fun in Bear Lake!
  • The year was full of fun family functions!
  • I made it through another year at D.I.
  • I signed up and quit on-line dating.  Twice.
  • I went crazy about Christmas.  Talk about rebound.
  • I got my hopes dashed when W. came to town.
  • The Indians and I spent a fun week together.
  • I used my passport!  I had tons of fun in the Caribbean.  I still need to blog about it.
Now that I see this list, and know all the things I've left out, I feel pretty good about 2010.  Turns out, this was a pretty good exercise for me.  When I look back it's hard not to really remember the times my feelings were hurt or crappy stuff that life hands out instead of focus and be happy for all of these good things.  2010 was a little too concentrated with tears.  How silly to have spent any time being unhappy when all of these great memories were taking place. 

I'm so grateful to have so many blessings right in front of me all the time.  I couldn't have a better family.  It seems like they only get better and better.  To have their support, encouragement, and their company has been the most meaningful part of 2010.  I have had so many opportunities for fun and good company while having fun.  I have been treated well by so many and feel like my cup overflows with the relationships I have with my family, friends, and ward members.  As so many awful things happened in the world and the economy, I know I am blessed to have a safe home and a job, especially a job that theoretically, I love.  Instead of saying good riddens to 2010, I'll part its company on amiable terms, thankful for the experiences but looking forward to good things to come.

Thursday, December 30, 2010

10 Lists of 10 Items for the Last 10 Days of 2010

10 Carrots I Have to Dangle
(I don't know how to make the title sound more or less inappropriate)

This carrot idea comes from a meeting/brainstorming thing I listened to.  A token economy is a form a behavior modification.  Generally, it's used in a mental institution/hospital.  The objective is to increase desirable behavior and decrease undesirable behavior with tokens.  Or carrots.  Or rewards.  Whatever you want to call them, it still creates a "token economy."

It's quite relatable to the fake bunny that goes around the race track to get the horses, or dogs, or whatever, to run.  Or dangling a carrot in front of a horse.  I think.

During this "meeting/brainstorming" thing, a comment was made that the carrots we're putting out there just aren't drawing any attention.  Despite that information, I'd like to list 10 carrots I have to dangle in front of, pretty much, the general world population.
  1. I can make a mean Swedish Pancake
  2. I can be the pinch hitter in almost any game, non-athletic of course
  3. I have excellent ideas for pets' names and outfits
  4. I can do the "Aunt Fanny Dance" until the sun goes down
  5. I write a blog for my own amusement
  6. My organizational skills are awesome, when I use them
  7. I know stuff about finances, even if I'm not living proof of how it works
  8. I've said it before, and I'll say it again, I can roll garments so well that (no offense) a blind, one-legged person could get dressed in 3.8 nano-seconds every day
  9. You might get a text from me with the word poop instead of poor or fart instead of fast by accident
  10. I'm pretty good at just sitting around with no expectations for entertainment

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

10 Lists of 10 Items for the Last 10 Days of 2010

An Astonishing List of 10 Men 40-43 Who All Land on the "Joey Finds Me Attractive" List
  1. Gerard Butler
  2. Hugh Jackman
  3. Wayne Brady (he's just a young buck)
  4. Mark Ruffalo
  5. Paul Rudd
  6. Colin Firth (just outside the bracket)
  7. Matthew Macfadyen
  8. Matthew McConaughey
  9. Cirian Hinds (outside the respected bracket)
  10. Brendan Frasier
Honorable Mentions: Gary Coleman, Puff Daddy, Harry Conick Jr., Will Ferrell, Kirk Cameron, Matt Damon, Dwayne Johnson, Owen Wilson

p.s.  Would the readers of this blog find this post particularly interesting or slightly offensive?


Tim McGraw, John Krasinski, Bill Pullman, Robert Downey Jr., Will Smith, John Corbet, Mark Harmon, Jude Law, Matthew Goode, George Clooney, Erin Erkhart, Channing Tatum, Jack Black, Brad Garrett, Josh Lucas, James Marsden

Looks like Earth is crawling with these sorts of folks.

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

10 Lists of 10 Items for the Last 10 Days of 2010

10 Plans for the New Year
  1. Envelope budget system
  2. Curtains on 1-4 windows
  3. Follow stake program for 2011
  4. Ireland, anyone?
  5. Read Pride and Prejudice
  6. Party with the young women
  7. Use what I already have in the house as much as possible
  8. Ration and/or delete Facebook
  9. Use the U.S. Postal Service for correspondence regularly
  10. Don't get a pet no matter how bad I want one

Monday, December 27, 2010

10 Lists of 10 Items for the Last 10 Days of 2010

10 Things I Procrastinated All Year
  1. Reading the Old Testament cover to cover
  2. Organizing the pile of papers, bills, and files in my closet
  3. Daring to watch my Mii blow up after a one year absence from the Wii Fit
  4. Painting my bedroom
  5. Using the fabric I bought to make curtains for 1-4 windows
  6. Meeting the next door neighbors
  7. Putting pictures in the empty frames already on the walls
  8. Touching an organ
  9. Deleting my Facebook account
  10. Taking my dresser from the upstairs hall to its final resting place

Sunday, December 26, 2010

10 Lists of 10 Items for the Last 10 Days of 2010

10 Hobbies I'd Like to Acquire
  1. Flower arranging
  2. Productive use of leisure time
  3. Drywalling
  4. Painting
  5. Photography
  6. Letter writing as a main form of correspondence
  7. Laundry folding
  8. Family history
  9. Craft inventor/assembler
  10. Using full sentences

Saturday, December 25, 2010

10 Lists of 10 Items for the Last 10 Days of 2010

10 Ways I Love(d) to Celebrate Christmas
  1. Watching Hurley eat the Santa suit I made him wear all day last year
  2. Mom's tea parties
  3. Laughing at all the same jokes during the Jon Schmidt Christmas concert
  4. Listening to the Forgotten Carols 900 times
  5. The old days of the Riverdale 3rd Ward Choir Christmas Program
  6. Putting the ornaments on my Christmas tree
  7. Shopping with Dad on Christmas Eve
  8. Opening Christmas cards
  9. Reading Christmas stories, especially The Light of Hope by Elder Vaughn J. Featherstone
  10. Candy, candy, hot chocolate, and snacks too

Friday, December 24, 2010

10 Lists of 10 Items for the Last 10 Days of 2010

10 Groups of People I'd Like to See "Elfed" Together
  1. Anne and the Power Rangers
  2. Wendy, Tina Fey, and Alec Baldwin
  3. Me, Mr. Darcy, and Gerard Butler
  4. Dad, Homer, and the inconceivable man
  5. Mom, Aunt Valerie, and Aunt Becky
  6. Cody, and the football coaches at the U and BYU
  7. Jeremy and 2 midgets, who may or may not know each other
  8. Jimmy, a trout, and a lobster
  9. Bob Bennett, Mike Lee, and Tim Bridgewater
  10. Nacho Libre, Achmed the Dead Terrorist, and Brian Regan

Thursday, December 23, 2010

10 Lists of 10 Items for the Last 10 Days of 2010

10 Ways to Deal with Stress During the Holidays
  1. Forgo buying groceries and eat only treats the neighbors may or may not have re-gifted to you.
  2. Use every second of your spare time making holiday decorations out of candy rather than complete mundane tasks like personal hygeine.
  3. Belt out Christmas Carols from November 1st to January 1st whenever you are in a vehicle.
  4. Watch Elf on continuous play for 7 days straight.
  5. Cheer up your sleeping quarters by stringing 21 strands of Christmas lights from your bedroom ceiling.
  6. Make gingerbread men and bite their heads off before decorating them.
  7. Write a holiday newsletter using characters and events from another family's life.  Write it like it's your story.
  8. Serve spaghetti and maple syrup to holiday guests.
  9. Wrestle pets into submission in order to dress them all up as Santa.
  10. Talk about the light up penguins on your porch like they are the darndest pets you've ever had.

Wednesday, December 22, 2010

10 Lists of 10 Items for the Last 10 Days of 2010

10 Don't Need to Know Joey Facts
  1. I laugh at fart jokes
  2. I have a standing lunch appointment every Monday at Paradise Bakery
  3. I was stung on both of my legs by a jelly fish in the Pacific Ocean
  4. I almost missed my last college final due to the distracting drills of the ROTC on the QUAD.
  5. In New Jersey, my 3 favorite people were all named Frank
  6. Once I got pulled over on my way home from traffic court
  7. While I am OCD organized at work, my bathroom counter and bedroom chair are rarely clutter free
  8. I could play Skip-bo until my fingers bleed
  9. Periodically, I have irrational ideas that I may or may not act upon
  10. I have entertained the thought of having either a housekeeper or a large fat cat hanging around my house.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

10 Lists of 10 Items for the Last 10 Days of 2010

10 Frequently Asked Holiday Questions
  1. Is there sugar in syrup? YES.
  2. How many blow-up decorations can I have in the yard and not be considered distasteful or hillbilly? HAS TO BE MORE THAN 25 WITH NO REPEATS.
  5. How can I send a mass holiday greeting by text that will read as personal? YOU CAN'T. 
  7. What do I have to look forward to come January 2nd? NOTHING.  UNLESS YOU ENJOY THE PAIN OF FAILING NEW YEAR'S RESOLUTIONS.
  8. Which movie must be included in a holiday rotation? PRANCER.  THAT LITTLE GIRL HAS MORE FAITH IN THAT REINDEER THAN I HAVE IN A DOZEN HUMANS.
  10. Can a lifelong apprehension towards a man in a Santa suit be overcome? NO.  IT'S NOT WORTH THE EFFORT AND AWKWARDNESS OF TRYING TO ACTUALLY DO THIS.

Friday, December 03, 2010

Happy Birthday Lisa M. Judkins!

I'll try to stay below the legal limit but there will be some sap included in this post.

Six years ago, I lived in an off-campus student apartment. Before moving in, I planned with a sister of my sister's friend, that we would live together at Utah State. That's right. My sister's friend's sister. Shari and I lived with one invisible girl and one crazy girl named Sunni. Sunni had a broken leg because she ran herself over with her jeep. There were a bunch of crazies living upstairs with whom Sunni socialized. Little did we know, an un-crazy lived up there too.

One night, the un-crazy one knocked on our door. Sunni had slipped a note under the aforementioned girl's bedroom door asking her to switch apartments. The said girl jumped at the chance. The next day she moved into Oakridge Apartment 6A! In my memory, Shari, Lisa, and I had a pretty fun time living together. Our adventures were so great, a book was published in our honor....Your Pants: A Memoir.

There have been times in my life where I land somewhere I never expected to, not knowing what to expect once I get there. This was one of these times. Fortunately for me, Lisa has been/is one of the best friends of my lifetime. Living in Logan and going to Utah State lands very close to the top of my favorite memories. I'm not good with beautiful sentiments and sappy words but we all know I appreciate lists. Allow me to list some of Lisa's qualities that put her at the top of my all-time favorite people:

  1. Wit
  2. Fashion
  3. Memory
  4. Stories from her life
  5. A picture of a cat attacking her brother
  6. The drives we went on in Logan and Layton
  7. Loyalty, supportiveness, and encouragement
  8. Honesty
  9. Teaching me to cry at random times
  10. Letting me cry my eyes out in front of her
  11. Advice
  12. Neil Diamond and the 4th of July
  13. Trips to Bear Lake, California, and with the singles' wards
  14. Sunday naps
  15. The different laughs
  16. Her great-grandmother's jokes
  17. Laughing really hard ALL night long
  18. Toast and Diet Coke breakfast
  19. Harry Potter and other theater outings
  20. The birthday party/Levi's butt
  21. Her housing proximity to my housing
  22. Her nuptials that landed her on my family tree
  23. Pretty much I like everything about Lisa
There you have it, Lisa. The kindest sentiments I could muster. I'm glad we're friends.








Sunday, November 28, 2010

Radio City Music Hall Rockettes

My mother's Christmas gift and Marlie's birthday present this year was to attend the Rockettes' Christmas Spectacular with me....and 6 of our closest friends.  It was a fun show!  I was happy to see Marlie clapping and being excited even though she was so tired. 

Alleson and I wondered a little about the Rockettes' careers so I did a little research.  It's estimated they make about $135.00 per show.  They wear heavy costumes and do approximately 1500 kicks during a day of shows.  Usually, their costumes are still soaked in sweat when they have to put them back on for the next show.  The seven numbers they perform require six costume changes.  The girls range in age from their early twenties to their mid-thirties.  During the off-season, they may perform in musical theater, model, dance, improv comedy, audition for television and movies, or just take the time off.  One girl failed the auditions three times.  So she got married and had a baby.  She auditioned again just after having her baby and was accepted as a rookie Rockette. 

I imagined many of the dancers were either in dance school or just coming out of dance school.  I am surprised by the variety of ages, training, and career paths.  Apparently, they lead regular lives until they are called back each year to begin the Rockette season again. 

Frankly, I don't understand dance as a career.  But I have the dance style akin to the Gobble Dance in the Old Navy ad in the Thanksgiving day paper.  Those girls are athletic and tough.  Many of them suffer injuries, mostly knee, lower back, and neck injuries.  They can hardly get home at the end of the night, only to return for 3-5 shows the next day.  They have to splurge if they want to take a cab instead of the subway home.  Whoa.

A few of my favorite co-Thanksgiving eaters

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Merry Christmas!!! and uh...Happy Thanksgiving.

Christmas started early for me this year.  I've decided to finally act on the empty promise that I make to myself every year that I want to be done preparing for Christmas by Thanksgiving. 


All of my Christmas decorations are up.  I know I do not have a grand tree but I love it so much.  All of the ornaments remind of something very special and together they remind me what a blessed life I have.  To me, the mismatched ornaments that range from beautiful crystal to the sheep with cotton balls I made in Nursery, blend into my favorite Christmas memory.  At least, my favorite memory that is at my own house.

Christmas music is in full swing here and my car.  Christmas cards are sent.    I've been rereading my favorite Christmas book.  I only have one or two gifts left to pick up and a couple to make.  Even the Christmas night lights are out.  And that means something.  All this time, I've been drinking hot chocolate like it's going out of style.

I am going on a cruise in 10 days and I was afraid it would cut short the time I have to celebrate Christmas this year.  I have gone to great lengths to avoid that.  Beginning tomorrow, I am going to as many Christmas events as possible.  EX: Radio City Rockettes, The Forgotten Carols, the Riverdale 3rd Ward Christmas Party with Grandma, the Hansen Christmas Party, Jon Schmidt Christmas, the Sand Ridge Ward Choir Program, and the Hoopernacle.  I'm pretty stoked.

I hope you (whoever you are) can enjoy the whole holiday season!  It's already been one of my favorites.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

my LIFETIME dream

During Campaign 2000, I can honestly say I gave my heart and political loyalty to President George Walker Bush.  Since then, the desire of my heart has been to meet him in person/work for him at the White House/work for him on his Texas Ranch/just hang out/etc.  Any of the above activities would fulfill my need and maybe even help me move on with my life.  Until one of these thing happen, I think I am halted in my current state.

GOOD NEWS!!!  Former president, George W. Bush, will be at the Costco in Sandy, Utah tomorrow to sign his newly released book, Decision Points.  My sister volunteered to try to get me a wrist band in the morning so I can MEET HIM IN PERSON on Friday afternoon!

The pickle is....I'll have James and Jack all day and even if I haul them down there, Marlie will probably get home from school before I can make it back.  Furthermore, add Elizabeth to the equation at 4:45 p.m.  Keep your fingers crossed! 

Public Service Announcement:  Wrist bands grant entrance only to the person/membership card who picked it up.  Tomorrow will not be the day I reach my lifetime goal.  I guess at least I still have a reason to live....but remember, it means I remain halted in my current life station.

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

I just remembered my teenage dream!!!

I didn't remember this even a little until I saw the announcement of this engagement on the news tonight.

When I was a teenager I decided that my ultimate career goal was to become the QUEEN of ENGLAND.  I didn't find a lot of support for my goal because I live in Utah and am not in the Royal family.  But....I had seen a picture of Prince William, the oldest son of Prince Charles and Princess Diana.  He is in line to be the next king.  Therefore, the young women betrothed to him would become the QUEEN of ENGLAND.   So, hello.  That's a realistic plan.  Well, it was a realistic plan.

I'm not sad about it, I guess.  Seeing Prince William at least ten years since I had this goal makes me worry a lot about his long term looks.

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Serious Sunday Naps

This week, I'm spending some time with my brother's kids.  It's an adventure.  It's kinda funny how my mindset changed from the stuff tossing around in my mind to tallying the number of dirty diapers there can be on one Sunday morning.  It's a lot. 

Jack fell asleep at about 5 p.m. for a nap.  Not ideal, but I thought a little snooze couldn't hurt.  Marlie, James, and I enjoyed our Swedish pancakes.  I tried to wake Jack up but he won't be disturbed.  You see....he is still asleep. 

I very sneakily made up a batch of brownies that Marlie's nose detected cooking in the oven.  It's amazing how sniffing out brownies is actually a gene passed through generations, I'm sure.  Her and James and I patiently waited for them to cook.  Then.....

Now it is 6:41 p.m., and I can't bribe any one of them awake even for a brownie.  Heaven help us when bed time rolls an hour.

i HEART thanksgiving

Thursday, November 04, 2010


A few weeks ago, I celebrated my 27th birthday.  Number 27 is the birthday that reminds every single woman that she is a burden to her parents and it serves as a reminder to her friends not to judge her.  "Don't you dare judge me, Lizzie."

My birthday was on a Sunday so I like to think the whole weekend was a celebration and all the activities were held in my behalf, which isn't necessarily true.

Friday, I had lunch at Taggart's with Emily and Hannah. Soooo good.  My family party was on Saturday night.  My sister-in-law made me probably my best birthday cake EVER.  On my actual birthday, my mom made me most favorite meal.  Carbs.  Spaetzle, corn, rolls, and chicken.  Yum.  Sunday evening, many of my favorite people came over.  I have really good friends.  I'm kinda wishing I had more pictures of all the partiers.


Sunday, October 31, 2010

"Stop Smirking"

The truth is....I can't control my face.  I am just beginning to learn that my face does stuff that I don't tell it to do.  I'm getting feedback from all over the place about this.  At work, I rolled my eyes at an associate and wouldn't have known except he called me on it.  A little bird told me my eyes get big when I lie.  And Katherine asked me to stop smirking in all the pictures.  Sorry guys.  You get what you pay for.

Although I am not a prime candidate for a photo shoot, I am a willing friend.  Katherine has a great new camera and wanted to practice with it.  I don't know how to hold still or follow simple instructions and those are skills I wanted/needed to practice.  I'm sure more pictures would have worked out if I had stopped jabbering and/or blinking in sync with the click of the camera.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

i have nothing to say for myself

I don't know what to tell you about myself.  Instead, let me share the coolest idea I've seen in a long, long time.  My friend Katherine is the most creative girl I know.  I will always envy her talents.  She made a dinosaur playland inside a suit case for her nephew Amir.  If I had these kind of skills I'd for sure copy this for my nephews.  Instead, I'll envy Katherine and adore her work. 

Sunday, October 10, 2010

why didn't someone tell me before now?

Here is one reader's response to this book:  "I read this book, thinking I had people in my life that would fit the description of porcupines, and that I could pick up a few pointers on how to handle them. Imagine my horror and dismay when I discovered that I'M a porcupine!!!"  At least this reader discovered it on her own.  I had to be told.

Talk about a 2X4 of truth....Honestly, I've never read this book.  I only know about it.  I've been meaning to read it since 2005, at least.  Now I know that I'll never read it.  I wish I had known before now that I'm a porcupine.  It's kinda hard to swallow, or hug, as the title would suggest. 

Friday, October 08, 2010

my secret love

I would like to unabashedly announce my love for vacuums.  The lines left behind on the carpet sooths my soul, calms my troubled heart, and lifts my spirits.  For clarification's sake: I am not crazy and I have never been diagnosed with any sort of obsessive compulsive disorder.  But even if it is a disorder, I'd still take it.  My home, any home, is more beautiful when there is a visible indication of the vacuum's hard work.

Although I appreciate the work of any vacuum is aging.  It's less agile than a drunk senior citizen.  It's less nimble than a monkey with no toes.  It's wheels have lost all peripheral movement.  And even though it sucks, it just can't hold everything in any more.  It needs to tighten its pucker string.  Yes....the vacuum is aged.  It's time that I begin to emotionally, mentally, and financially prepare myself to replace the old bird with a vivacious, vigilant, and vigorous new vacuum.  Or whatever Wal-Mart has.

Thursday, October 07, 2010

the Lion King

On September 25th, I got to go with my mom and sisters to see the Lion King at the Capitol Theater.  We had a delicious dinner at Little America before the show.  It was a stupendous evening!

A close up of Wendy because she just looks so beautiful!

My favorite part was probably how the drums set every scene and the extravagant costumes and simple scenery. 

My least favorite part might have been the number of people who were totally under dressed.  Is Utah so sheltered that people don't know Broadway plays, symphonies, operas, and other cultural events are worthy of more than a pair of flip flops and cargo shorts?

side effects of the d.i.

I have to admit that working at the Deseret Industries isn't full-time fun and games.  Periodically, I have to work with a diverse population of humans.  The diversity presents itself in a number of ways.  Sometimes, the humans say things to me that they may or may not believe I have never heard before.  And sometimes I just can't help but ask the human, "Do you think you're the first person who came up with that excuse?"  Other times, I can't help but rudely interrupt the humans in their plea for sympathy and forgiveness for their absence as he/she explains the details of their bodily function's flaws.  That's right...the flaws in how their body is functioning.  In addition, there are times when one person calls in sick and 3.67 seconds later his/her new d.i. love calls in sick.  The second caller always seems surprised by inquiry into the coincidental nature of the 2 calls.

Let me get down to the brass tacks here....

The consistency and popularity in the belief that I can't see or hear a lie takes a toll.  Many parts of the work at d.i. takes a toll.  Side effects of d.i. include brain loss and fatigue.  For example, a dear co-worker was late to work the other day because she couldn't find her black slip.  She searched and searched before she decided just to put on her white slip instead.

I'd like to share some happy d.i. thoughts as well.  Because sometimes d.i. is a job of fun and games or, oddly enough, tender moments.  Well, maybe I won't share them right now but I will say that sometimes I can feel my eyes tear up of the successes the associates experience when they believe they can only fail.  And sometimes, their thoughtfulness blesses my life and builds me up in many ways.

Turns out....even if I go to work with 2 slips on....I'd still love D.I.

Thursday, September 09, 2010

a few of my favorites

the tongue
the smile
the tongue
a messy face
grandpa S. and grandma H.