Tuesday, September 29, 2009

But enough about ME! Let's talk about Gigi!

Gigi hasn't always been Gigi.  She used to be Gigi and Papa.  But that was before Papa passed away six years ago on my birthday, (which goes to show he liked me best). 

He was buried on my sister, Melanie's birthday, (which goes to show he liked her next best). 

Papa was a bad boy from Malad, Ideeho.  

Well, he wasn't really a bad boy, per say, more a farm boy with a lot of angst.  He wasn't a lover as much as he was a fighter.

In fact, he was a champion featherweight fighter.  Until he decided to enlist during World War II.

But that's a whole nother story, which includes a lot of blood and guts, and a little bit of guts and glory.

The first thing I remember about Gigi and Papa was that they lived in a little pink house with round front steps on Maine Street in Long Beach, California.  How Papa and Gigi got from getting busted up in the ring in Ideeho to getting busted up in the war in Europe to a little pink house on Maine Street in another whole nother post.

Alls I knew was that as I child I got to spend the summers sitting in Gigi's recliner watching The Beverly Hillbillies, H.R. Pufnstuf and Sigmund and the Sea Monsters

If I had time left over I'd also watch Underdog, I dream of JeanieGet Smart and Green Acres. During commercials I did cartwheels down the hallway and snuck Oreos from Gigi and Papa's ceramic apple cookie jar.  

Gigi's real name was Venna Emma.  She worked the night shift as a nurse and the day shift as a zombie.  In the afternoons she would wake up and open a can of bean with bacon soup for my lunch.  I once made the mistake of telling her that I loved Bean with Bacon soup so much I could marry it.  And eat it for every meal.   She believed everything I said and performed the wedding ceremony herself. 

In the evenings, when Papa came home from his OK Tire shop we would all sit together, eat salt water taffy and watch Pyramid and Press Your Luck before my gigi had to go to work. 

Sometimes my gigi would turn off the T.V. and drag me, kicking and screaming, to the beach.  "You WILL enjoy this if it's KILLS you!" she would say as she was dragging me, kicking and screaming, down Shoreline Drive. 

Other times she would turn off the T.V. and drag me, kicking and screaming, to the brown house with the square front stairs on Cedar Avenue where my other grandma and grandpa lived.  But there were no Oreos or recliner chairs on Cedar Avenue.  There were only scriptures and revelations.  

When I got older my Papa sold his OK Tire shop and moved Gigi into a double wide trailer in California City, smack dab in the middle of the Mojave desert.  It wasn't far from Edwards air force base and K-Mart.  

Sometimes Gigi would turn off the T.V. and drag me, kicking and screaming, to the blue light specials, but usually we just sat around watching Twilight Zone marathons and eating Casadias. 

It was a little piece of heaven pie, and I looked forward every summer to getting out of weeding the garden and scrubbing the toilets at my house and chillaxing at Gigi and Papa's house, where the toilets magically cleaned themselves and the cookie jar was always magically filled to the rim.   

I also looked forward to getting out of Provo.  I'm a runner, that's what I am.  And not the kind that burns calories.  I'm also an escape artist.  I used to disappear all the time.  When I reappeared I was usually seated at the Provo public library reading Nancy Drew or The Hardy Boys or sitting in the movie theater on Center street.  Sometimes I would just be wandering around downtown meandering through Woolworth's or Lerners or J.C. Penney, but that was later on, after my dad died, when I had to ditch math class before I turned into a pumpkin.  

While my dad was alive I spent a lot of time watching soap operas or listening to the Carpenters or rearranging my bedroom.  One day I my dad sat me down and told me he was worried about me because I was so withdrawn all the time.  I told him I was worried about him too because he was so strung out all the time.   He said, "You read too much!" and I said, "You shoot up too much!"  Then we had a knock-down, drag-out fist fight.

That's how we rolled.  

No, that's not how we rolled.  We avoided eye contact and touchy subjects. That's how we rolled.

We never had any Calgon, but I always had my gigi and papa to take me away.  They would often make the twelve hour trip from Cal City in their brand new Subaru to spend a week doing our dishes and sharing their Instant Breakfast and screaming about our boa constrictor crawling out of the heating vents.  

Then one night they'd load up their car and say, "Who wants to come back with us this year?" 

"I do! I do!" I would squeal.  Usually I was the only one waving my hands in the air like I just didn't care so they'd throw my suitcase in the back of the Subaru and tell me to get a good night's rest.  I never slept a wink.  It was more exciting than Christmas morning.  The only difference was I knew exactly what I would get.  I would get to lean forward from the back seat and perch in between Gigi and Papa.  I would get to listen to them talk and laugh and I would get to sip their Shasta Cola and I would get to sing CALIFORNIA HERE WE COME at the top of my lungs.  

I pretty much had a charmed life.  


Stay tuned, peeps, for more story, and for photographic evidence.  I'm trying to get my hands on some cute photos of Gigi after she became electromagnetized.  

Sunday, September 27, 2009

Drumroll Please . . . we got our Utah callings

So you want to hear more about my gigi, huh?  

Okay, but can I first just tell you about how bad we/(I) messed up on our/(my) talk(s) at church.  

We/(I) messed up so bad that guess what callings we got?  Activities committee members. That was our(my) punishment!  And the bishopric says they're looking forward to a Christmas Luau.  
YIKERS!  I wish I had paid more attention at the Polynesian Cultural Center when they roasted that pig thingie in that ground thingie. 

We/(I) actually messed up so bad on our talk(s) that we got TWO callings.  We're teaching Sunday School too!  Ahhhh!  The 14-15 year olds.  Ahhhh!  

But I already have my first lesson planned: Rock Climbing the chapel wall.  


And while we're climbing I'm going to pop in some Miley Cyrus It's the Climb into the boom box behind the sacrament table.  That's a really spiritual song if you think about it, and it can easily accompany any gospel lesson.

I've officially decided that my ward is uber cool.  You would not believe what happened.  When we said "Aloha, brother's and sisters!"  They all said, "ALOOOOOHA!" back. 

Each time we said it, they said it LOUDER.  And they smiled when they said it.  If I liked adverbs I would say they smiled HUGELY!  But I despise adverbs so I will just say they BEAMED!  

So after my kids were done speaking I got up (and I think this might be where I messed up) and instead of saying ALOOOOOOHA at the top of my lungs, I yelled "WE GOT the SPIRIT, YES WE DO!  WE GOT the SPIRIT, how 'bout YOU!"

And would you believe it, they yelled it right back.  And some of them even got up and did a herkie.  

It was awesome!  My new ward may be weird, but they are wicked awesome weird!

(So do you think that's why we got called to be on the activities committee?) 

Drat! My hub is dragging me off to bed.  (such a kill joy!)  I'll hafta tell you more about my gigi tomorrow.

G' niiiiiiiiiiiiiiiiight!

Saturday, September 26, 2009

Zapped while zipping!

Oh, Peeps, lend me your ear!  For I have a tale to tell that will knock your socks off.  And your shoes too, for that matter.  

At least it knocked my gigi's shoes off.  Literally.  

Today is the day I will finally tell you the story about the time my gigi got struck by lightening.  

You probably thought I was fibbing about my gigi being able to conduct electricity and mutating into a magnet, huh?

You never know with the dummy, right?  You always walk away scratching your head and asking yourself, did she really poke her bishop's eye's out? Or did she really Kung Fu Panda kick that insulting soccer dad?   

Maybe, maybe not.  But one thing is sure, if it sounds too crazy to be true, BELIEVE IT!

We really did have a guinea pig named Popeye whose eyeballs popped out after an incident with our dog but were re-installed for $10 by a very compassionate vet.  And my gigi really did get struck by lightening.   

Kute Kasey said yesterday that my life should be a T.V show.  FYI, KK, my hub has been begging me for years to write my first book about my grandma who lives in the Twilight Zone and he has already cast Nicole Kidman to play my grandma when the made-for-T.V. movie comes out.  

This is my made-for-T.V. movie grandma:

And this is my reality T.V. grandma:

How cute is she?  

But I will take you to the Twilight Zone to meet my grandma another day.  Today I'm out to prove that the whole lightening-never-strikes-twice theory is a load of propaganda.  

Roy Sullivan was struck by lightening seven times.  

Once you can conduct electricity, lightening kinda stalks you.  Either that or Gad kinda punishes you. 

My gigi was punished three times. 

So do you want to meet my gigi?

This is her as I left her apartment today. Don't ask me why she was pointing to the heavens.  

When my gigi was four years old she got a new pair of shoes.  Two days later a bolt of lightening entered her neck and exited her left heel.  This process pretty much ruined her new shoes, which ticked her off.  

But not until six months later because it took a whole six months before her mother could even dress her again.  

For six months my poor gigi laid under a sheet trying to recover, without any antibiotics or pain killers, from being electrocuted.  There were hundreds of pieces of rock and gravel and bark embedded in her skin because the lightening had pretty much split the sidewalk beneath her feet wide open.  The doctor told gigi's mother there was no way she would survive, but she stayed by her beside round the clock and prayed her daughter back to life.  

The End.  

PSYCH!  Not The End.  

Today, besides acquiring photographic evidence of the shoes, I learned a new detail that has never before accompanied the story.  When I lifted the shoes from their wooden case, a folded piece of paper fell out of the box.  Inside was every embarrassing detail of the story.  

As it turned out, my gigi did follow her father's instructions and began to run home.  However, halfway there she realized something.  

Something very important to the story.  

Something very important to her fate and destiny and karma and to the fate, destiny and karma of her posterity.

Her bladder was full.  

In other words, she had to pee.  

And so she raced to the biggest tree she could find, squatted, and began to relieve herself, which is to say she was in the act of peeing (pardon my vulgarity, but sometimes the truth is rated R) when a subliminal message, in the form of a lightening bolt, came straight from the hand of Mrs. Gad saying "Hey down there! Don't cha know it ain't lady like to pee on a tree!

Seriously, could the story get any better if I thought of it myself?

The question is this: Who should we cast to play my gigi in her HBO special Zapped While Zipping?

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Oh, my PROPHETic soul!

I was born of goodly parents.  And electromagnetic grandparents. 

Thankfully, electromagnetics are genetic because I received my force field at birth. My gigi, on the other hand, had to get struck by lightening three times to receive hers.

Technically she was only struck once, but she conducted electricity via a bolt of lightening twice thereafter.  

In other words, she's an electricity magnet.

But this story isn't about having a gigi who can conduct electricity, it's about the benefits of having a gigi who can conduct electricity. The main benefit being that I inherited the power to see dumb people and the power to attract famous people. 

Just when I was beginning to think I had lost my touch in Utah, I woke up yesterday morning with the sweet sounds of serendipity in my ears. 

Actually I felt like crap, and serendipity was the last thing in my ears.  Alls I could hear was my hub saying, "Don't forget to fill out the record release form and fax them to me and RSVP to the birthday party and pay the twins lunch money and pick up some milk and clean the bathrooms and call on the car insurance. Oh, and don't be late to the funeral!" 

FTR, my hub didn't really say any of those things, but he was thinking them (ESP is another power I inherited) and he thinks really loud thoughts (epecially when I'm trying to pretend I'm asleep while he's ironing his own clothes and making his own lunch for work).  

I forgot all the things my hub ESP'd me to do because I was watching Clean Sweep, but thank goodness I didn't forget the funeral.  

My SIL's FIL passed away last weekend.  

It's funny how things happen sometimes.  If I hadn't forgotten to pay my twins lunch money, I wouldn't have had to rush to their school before the funeral to pay it.  And if I hadn't rushed to their school to pay it, I wouldn't have been late for the funeral.  And if I hadn't been late for the funeral, I wouldn't have received a standing ovation when I walked through the chapel doors during the opening song.

As fate would have it, I was late and when I entered the chapel the whole congregation stood up and turned to look at me.  

Imagine my surprise. My first instinct was to do the shaka, (then I checked to see if my zipper was down or if I had toilet paper hanging from the back of my skirt). 

I turned to see if the casket was coming in behind me.  

But it wasn't the casket.  It was the PROPHET! 

The PROPHET, PEEPS!  Thomas S. Monson was walking behind me!!!!  

Oh, my prophetic soul! 

If you are Catholic, this is like the Pope following you in to mass.  If you are Jewish, it's like the Messiah's secretary showing up at synagogue.   

This is no small matter for a Mormon. 

For over an hour I sat staring at the prophet on the stand.  It was a bit surreal when the speakers bore testimony of him and HOLY COW, there he was!  Right behind them.

And he didn't just sit there behind them.  He arose and he spoke too.  

As the story goes, he was a close friend to my SIL's FIL, and though he's extremely busy, being the prophet and all, and he had already attended three meetings earlier that morning, he always has time for his friends, so his secretary cleared his schedule and his driver put the pedal to the medal, and they all prayed to Gad that he would not be arrested while racing down from Salt Lake to speak at his friend's funeral.  

How poignant is that?  

But just before the prophet arose and spoke my whole body went numb and cold and I began sweating from every pore. I was sweating everywhere except my eyeballs because it suddenly dawned on me that I had forgotten to turn off my cell phone.  It was in my candy-apple-red purse somewhere, which I had also forgotten to clean out, but I had no idea where, which meant that if my cell phone, which is set to level 25 volume so I can hear it anywhere in the house, was to go off during the prophet's discourse, #1. I would not be able to locate it and silence it within a 30 second time frame, and #2. I would be solely responsible for the living prophet's first encounter with the Black Eyed Peas.   

This was not my finest hour.  When the prophet speaks, people listen.  And they listen reverently and quietly.

I felt like one of the five virgins who came to the wedding unprepared to meet Christ.  Except I felt worse because I'm not even a virgin, and it wasn't even a wedding.

I slowly reached under my chair to locate my candy apple red purse.  I then situated it beside me on the pew where I could subtly rummage through all the receipts and lipgloss and wads of cash and packs of Orbit Sweet Mint gum to find my phone.  This took some finger gymnastics. Once my fingers happened upon it, I flipped it open with one hand and gently placed my thumb over the off button.  

The problem I then faced was, do I let the audience hear me turn it off, or do I just sit with my thumb perched on the off button in case someone called?  

I decided on the latter, so there I sat, squirming and sweating, with my hand resting inside my purse in ready position to keep the Black Eyed Peas out of earshot of our beloved Prophet. 

Before long I noticed the people next to me on the pew squirming and sweating too and casting glances at my hand resting in ready position inside my purse.  

OMGOSH!  Apparently I was not avoiding the appearance of evil. They were worried I had a weapon of mass destruction hiding in my candy-apple-red purse! And they actually thought I had my finger on the trigger! 

Suddenly two men-in-black pounced on me and wrestled me to the ground . . .

J/K peeps.  That didn't happen at all.  What really happened was the Prophet arose and spoke and cracked us all up.  He is one funny cowboy.  So while everyone was rolling in the aisles I pressed OFF and no one was the wiser.  


But fo' reals, when the prophet bears testimony of the afterlife, it's a chicken skin experience.  A kodak moment--only more like when you photoshop your kodak moment.  In that kodak moment all the edges blur and the Prophet comes into sharp focus in the center and you could swear he's talking to you through a tunnel of light.  

Unfortunately the only photographic evidence I have is from my new purple diva cell phone. 

I'm such a sucker for free stuff, even if it's diva purple.

But do you have any idea how tacky you feel when you're snapping photographic evidence of the Prophet with a purple diva cell phone?

 Like I said before, it wasn't my finest hour. 

Post Script:  On the drive home my daughter called. "Where have you been?" she said.  "I've been calling and calling. I forgot my soccer uniform."


"I've been listening to a prophet's voice" I said. 

(And yes, I'm SAVED, btw!  I got to shake his hand too!)

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Church Chat

Okay, we talked race, now let's talk religion.   

Last week I was summoned to meet with the bishop directly after sacrament.  Pronto!  My hub had taken the boys camping so I was on my own to brave the appointment.  

When I arrived, the entire bishopric was seated nervously behind the bishop's eight inch binder, directly in front of his 52 inch Family Proclamation.   

"Are you guys going to call me to be the Stake President?" I said, after a few moments of awkward pleasantries. 

"No, we actually want to get to know you better so we can give you the perfect calling.  We were wondering if you and your family would speak in Sacrament meeting in two weeks." 

"That's it?"  I said.  "You raised my heart rate for that?"

In Hawaii, we just check the program to see if we're speaking that day and we like it like that! That way we don't have to go through all the opposition it takes to touch people's hearts.

We haven't delivered our speech yet, but I spent the better part of last week thinking of what I would have to say to get the perfect calling.  

And what is the perfect calling, anyway?  I thought a lot about that too. 

I decided I wanted to be that guy that sits in the big, comfy, ergonomically-correct office chair on the stand.  Do you guys have that guy?  We didn't have that guy in Hawaii, but we have him here in Utah.  When I'm not fantasizing about climbing the rock wall I'm watching that guy.   He sits on the stand and looks out over the crowd.  Then he jots down a few tittles in his notebook. Then he looks at the speaker before he again jots down a few tittles.  

What the helk is he jotting and tittling?  That's what I want to know. 

I am so on to that guy.  I know exactly what he's doing.  He's blogging.  I know THAT look! I know THAT cover!  He's pretending to pay attention, but he's really thinking about his next post.  

At least that's what I'm going to do when I get that calling.   

The best part about that calling is that you get to sit right next to the big black boom box behind the sacrament table.  What do you do with a big black boom box in the chapel?  Just curious?  

I know what I will do when I get that calling.  I will plug in my headphones and while I'm pretending to jot and tittle I will also pretend to be listening to the Mormon Tab.  But really I'll be listening to the Black Eyed Peas and writing my next post.  Just think how good my posts will be with that view!

So what should I say in my talk to get that calling? Should I be straight up or beat around the bush? 

I'm a little worried because what if no one laughs at my jokes.  What if they don't get me? Everyone seems so smart.  I'm thinking of making a sign that says APPLAUSE to cue the audience to the funny parts.  Or at least a sign that says BA DUM BUM! so they know I'm a good side kick.

Actually church on Sunday was kinda weird.   Someone must have ratted out my blog or else you guys must have sent a lot of prayers into the universe that the dummy would get some eye contact in church, cuz there was a whole lotta eye contact going on!   I mean everyone was staring at me.  

What's up with that?  

Do you think it could have been my gold bedazzled blouse?  

Before we left the house my hub said, "Oh my, you look awfully . . . sparkly today.  Have you been watching What Not to Wear?" 

How am I s'pose to take that? 

Another weird thing about church is that Sunday School was normal.  They didn't even play the do do do do Twilight Zone theme song for opening exercises this week!  


And I made three new friends besides Carol Bell in Relief Society. But I accidentally hugged one of them in the hallway.  


The only not-weird thing that happened at church was the choking incident.  That is to say I caught a big ole' kid in the hallway who just so happened to have my son in a headlock.  When I tried to tell him about my strict NO-CHOKING-IN-CHURCH policy, he said, "I was just trying to help him feel the spirit."  

Which, now that I think about it in context, makes perfect not-weird sense.

I am definitely in the right ward because in Utah they divide wards phonetically.  So far I've met a bunch of Katies, Kellys, Keris, Kathryns, Kimbrees, Kims, Connies, Crystals, Carries, and Carols.  

But I'm the only Crash.

P.S.  Raise your hand if you want to meet my one and only bee-U-tiful sister. 

This is Melanie: 

I know what you're thinking.  How does she look like such a super model, plus have all those extra living accommodations for her loved ones?  Am I right?

If her eyes look a little blurry in this shot it's because I asked her to take off her glasses to avoid flash flare. 

Here we are together freezing our booties off at the Welcome-to-the-neighborhood pot luck last night.  (See what I mean about the flash flare?)

And lookie! This is my first Utah friend, Kathryn!  I HAVE A FRIEND, peeps! I have a FRIEND!

(Actually Kathryn is Melanie's  friend, but she let me borrow her to make you think I'm pop-U-lar.)

Monday, September 21, 2009

Endless Summer (Caution: this post is racey)

Today is the last day of summer. 

Usually when I hear that I think, hmph, not for me it isn't, and I thumb my nose at the world. But now I am not only in the world, but of the world, which means my endless summer ends in exactly 6 hours. 

Thirteen years of straight summer . . .  POOF . . .  just like that.  

That deserves a moment of silence, don't cha think?

R.I.P endless summer.  

Bring in on, FALL!

It's 61 degrees right now and the air is crisp and clean, with no caffeine. It's got attitude. It's got a bark to it's bite.  My thirteen year old keeps opening the door and saying, "It's FREAKIN' COLD!!!!! Is it going to be this cold every day until winter?"

Mwuahahaha!  He has no idea. He thinks cold is the fruit section at Costco. We once found a patch of snow in Wyoming in July and he went surfing on it with his bare feet. He swore up and down that he had hypothermia.  


But let's not talk about the weather.  Let's talk about how much my daughter hated my post about her pelting a Polynesian in the head with a bottle of soda.   She thought it was lame sauce, and, if I recall correctly, she used the word embarrassing quite a few times. 

"You sounded so . . . white!"  she cringed.  

"I am white," I told her. 

"I know you are, but what am I?" she said.

"You're white too, girlfriend." 

That shut her up.  

I had no idea she had no idea she was white.  My boys all figured it out when they were in third grade.  My oldest son came home from school one day and asked,  "Mom, am I a haole?" 

 (Haole is what they call us white folk in Hawaii.)

"NO DUH you are!" I told him.

"So junk!" he declared.  

It's not the most popular race to be in Hawaii.  It's right up there with being Portuguese. Unfortunately I later found out that my great great grandmother who came from India was not actually FROM India.  She was FROM Portugal.  

You do the math. 

"WHAT!?" My son said.  "I'm haole AND Portuguese??????" 

"Life stinks! GET OVER IT!" I told him. 

Point is, my kids are racially sensitive.  In fact just yesterday my daughter and I camped out watching the What I Like About You marathon on Teen Nick and all those nasty, naughty, skanky Degrassi commercials kept interrupting my purity.  

"Teen Nick is RACEY!" I declared.

"No, it' s not,"  she said. "IS TOO!" I said. "IS NOT!" she said.  

Then we started all-star wrestling on the bed until she pinned me down and said, "There's nothing racial about Teen Nick!"  

That's my girl!

But I let's not talk about race.  Let's talk about religion.  Anyone want to hear about church this week?

Let me know if you want to hear about it and we'll talk about it tomorrow.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

Close Encounters of the Polynesian Kine

I didn't go to the BYU football game, but I did go to a BYU baseball game.  

Why?  Because my super studmo nephew plays on the team.  

Picture this:  My hub and I are sitting next to my daughter.  Behind us and to the right are sitting my three sons.  In front of us and to the right is sitting a Polynesian.  

That leaves an entire empty row between my three sons and the Polynesian. 

Got it?  

Good, because this post relies on physical comedy.

Since I've been living in Utah I get a little goofy when I see Polynesians.  

Goofy, as in I have an uncontrollable urge to smile and shaka and wrap my skinny white arms around them. 

For some odd reason, they don't seem to feel that same urge when they see me.  

I think it's a case of mistaken identity.  I think they think I'm a Utard. 

At the baseball game I kept smiling and doing the shaka at this Polynesian, and just as I was beginning to think he didn't speak shaka, he stood up.  

Guess what he was wearing?  A Laie Boyz shirt. 

In Laie if I had seen a Polynesian wearing a Laie Boyz shirt I would duck and cover so he couldn't pull a boyz-in-the-hood on me.  But in Utah I poked my daughter and said, "LOOKIE! A Laie boy!  Let's go say ALOHA and tell him we're Laie girlz! Maybe we could do da kine hula for him!"  

My daughter was like "MOM! ARE YOU INSANE?  We are afeared of the Laie Boyz!!!!"

Then she leaned in close and raised her voice to a hoarse whisper, "So help me GAD if you do something stupid . . . "

I am more afeared of my daughter than I am of the Laie boyz so I held my tongue.

A few minutes later my three sons, who, if you remember correctly, were sitting behind us and to the right asked my daughter to toss him a bottle of soda.  

My daughter picked up the bottle of soda and gracefully flung it through the air.  The next part happened in slow motion.   

T h e    s o d a     s a i l e d    s  l    o    w    l     y    t h r o u g h   t h e   a i r   t o w a r d   m y   s o n s.  T h e y   r e a c h e d   o u t . . .

but it just kinda smacked the back of the chair in front of them and ricochetted off in the general direction of the Laie boy'z head.  

Which is to say it bounced.  Twice.  Once off the back of the chair in front of my three sons, and once off the back of the head of the Laie boy.  

Picture this:  My daughter on her hands and knees begging forgiveness from the Laie boy for pelting him in the head with a bottle of soda, (and me in the background doing da kine hula).

Hee hee hee 

I think Murphy was an English major because, not only is he a great lawyer, but he also has a fantastic sense of irony.

Friday, September 18, 2009

Trailer Trash

I've been spending way too much time with my stuff lately. (Talk about high maintenance!) Sooooo demanding, my stuff.  Everything is vying for my attention--my old stuff and my new stuff. Even my borrowed stuff and my blue stuff wants a piece of me. 

Don't get me wrong, I'm happy to see my stuff again, it's just that it's all a bit insecure after the separation. Especially my bed. Every time I try to get anything done, my bed is like, "DON'T go! Don't leave me again.  Pretty pleeeeease!  Just five more minutes."  

My bed is not easy to say no to either because it's so firm.  Yet gentle.  It doesn't give me any attitude like some beds I know.  In fact, don't think I'm easy breezy, but we've been sleeping together every night since it arrived.  

You still respect me, right?  FTR, I am totally committed to my bed till death do us part (even though I sleep around occasionally.)

But enuff about my stuff! Let's talk about my mom.  

Today my mom came over to bring me some tomatoes from her garden and to tell me that TAMNIT, she is finally going to follow her dream!!!

"I'm listening," I said.  And I was.  

"I want to live in a trailer," she announced. 

Me, I dream about world peace, and that one day all Utah Mormons will be able to make eye contact at church, but my mom dreams of living . . . in a trailer.  And not in a trailer down by the river.  She wants to live in a trailer PARK.  

Oh, excuse me--an RV PARK!  

In short, my mom wants to be trailer trash.  

This is not news to me.  She's been trying to get us to give her our blessing and agree to be trailer trash spawn for years.

It just so happens that my sister has a vacant trailer for my mom to move into.  (btw, if anyone ever needs to make their dreams come true, (or a cool place to live), I can totally hook you up with my sister.) 

(And if you need a pedicure I can hook you up with her hub.)

So my mom and I went to my sister's so we could check out her trailer, and I am pretty sure that trailer is charmed because we sat in it for two straight hours just talking and laughing and talking some more before my sister finally broke into her daughter's piggy bank and took us to Zupas for some lobster bisque and chocolate covered strawberries.

Not only does my sister know how to make dreams come true and pay for lobster bisque with $1 bills, she remembers every hee-hee-larious thing that ever happened to us when we were kids.  

I'm seriously going to have to start a series of trailer trash stories for your reading pleasure. 

Story #1 will be about our guinea pig named Popeye?  

And fo' real, the reason it was named Popeye had nothing to do with spinach or olive oil and everything to do with the time our dog squeezed it's face until it's eye balls popped right out of it's head.  I kid not.  My mom had only $10 to her name but she declared that no guinea pig of hers would have to go through life with it's eyeballs dangling by a thread so she rushed him to the vet who promptly popped Popeye's little eyeballs back into their little sockets.  

And here's the tear jerker.  He only charged $10! 

How's that for a trailer trash?  

There's plenty more where that came from, baby!

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Reunited, and it feels so good!

As ya'll know, I got my stuff.


And I made it through the labor and delivery without being a big baby.

sniff sniff

I had to work out a few lumps in my throat when I saw my couches, but mostly I was strictly business. And strictly ballroom. (If there is one thing I know, it's how to dance around my emotions.)

Until I saw my car.


Oh bee-U-tiful, for spacious skies!

My car!

Lookie, peeps!  That's my old car sitting in my new driveway. 

Oh, Martha and Swirl, does it tug at your heart strings to see my old car in my new driveway? 


When I took my car for a ride I had to do the heimlich on my eyeballs because they were all choked up.  I couldn't even see where I was going.  Alls I could see was the leftover sand everywhere.  


And the clock.  The clock said 9:00.  But it wasn't 9:00 in Utah, it was 1:00! 

As Gad as my witness, I will NEVER change that clock. So help me Gad, I will drive in Hawaiian time for the rest of my live long dayz.

But the thing that really gave me whiplash was my son's trombone mouthpiece sitting in the cup holder.  

Do you know how long that mouthpiece has been sitting in that cup holder reminding me that my son will never be a trombone player? 



And then I pushed play on the CD player and guess who was there?  


That darn John Mayer is always there when I need him. 

Hugs, John Mayer!

So after I got through getting reacquainted with my car, I started unpacking my boxes.  It was like Christmas morning, (if you opened all your old beat-to-helk junk on Christmas morning). 

When you move every single thing you own is wrapped and wrapped and wrapped in packing paper and each little bundle sends a surge of adrenalin through your veins as you unwrap it.  

The suspense practically kills you.

You're like "OMGosh  . . . here's my . . . soft scrub.  YAY! And here's my . . . vanilla.  Woohoo!"

My red spatula is in heaven.

Look how happy it looks to be surrounded by friends!

Friends are so important!

The Relief Society lesson on Sunday was all about friends.  

After it was over, I lingered . . . but to no avail, cuz I don't have any friends in Relief Society . . .

I used to have friends in Relief Society . . . 

I was just about to start pouting over it when some sweet lady named Carol Bell came up to me and said, "ALOHA! Welcome to our ward."  
Hugs, Carol Bell!  And kisses too.  (((Air kisses, of course (don't know you that well) (ftr, I don't know John Mayer that well either, but I would have kissed him))). 

Here's a cute story.  There's a girl from my high school in my ward.  I was kinda excited about it so I went and sat behind her in Relief Society and I was like, "hey, girlfriend, remember me?" She looked at me with a blank face so we exchanged deets.  Then I was like, "so do you remember me now? Huh? Huh? Huh?"  She was like, "Ummm, I'm gonna say yes, cuz you kinda look familiar . . . " 

Then there was this kinda awkward pause before she got up (politely) and moved to the other side of the room.  

She probably just isn't used to me as a Hawaiian tropic model. Luckily, I was in a really good mood on Sunday because Sunday's are so spiritual.  Anyway, I know I'll win her over eventually.  That's what dummies do.  

Not whining, just sayin'.  

I did meet someone at church who is related to someone who knows someone who married someone who I almost went with to a bath house in Korea.  Come to think of it, I actually did go with her to a bath house in Korea, but then we decided students and teachers probably shouldn't see each other nekked so we chickened out.  

It's a small world afterall, ain't it?

My neighbors are really nice too.  My next door neighbor's name is Kimbree, which means cute cheese.  I know we'll hit it off because I LUB cute cheese.  She brought me a pear pudding pie on Saturday.  Then yesterday she brought me some pear butter.  And today she called and invited me to do my canning with her.  I LOL'd and said, "Girlfriend, are you serious????  Do people really can?"  Then I told her, "If I canned with you, when would I watch America's Next Top Model?"

Poor, poor Kimbree.  She has no idea that she now lives next door to the dummy!  

Tuesday, September 15, 2009

The Sky is Falling!

I'm not going to blog today because I'm ired with a "t."  Yesterday the sky opened up and sobbed and sobbed and sobbed. I couldn't tell if it was happy or sad, but it dropped more than just tears.  It dropped 150 boxes on my doorstep.  

This is what my home looked like before the sky started crying:

Then suddenly I looked out the window and what did I see? 

This is BEFORE they started bringing it out of the truck.  One of my neighbors came running over saying "Where's all your stuff?  The truck is empty!"   

Some of these boys lived in Laie.  Ahhhhhhhh!!!!

Here is our house now! 

The sky started crying right after I took this picture.  I think it was just so grateful that I was finally reunited with my stuff. 

Monday, September 14, 2009

Pillow Talk

I told my hub about my Dumb and Dumber cooking blog project and he asked me if I was dumb, or dumber.

Then he said, "Julia Child and Jim Carey have been there/done that. Why don't you think of something original?" 

(He should start a Rude and Ruder blog.)

I told him that Julia Child made French fries and French toast and French dip sandwiches ! "I am not going to be a French chef,"  I said.

"What kind of chef are you going to be then?" he smirked.

I told him I was going to be a Pampered Chef! Then I wiped the smug grin off his face with my IKEA apron and went to get a pedicure.

But I didn't go by myself--when I live my dream, everyone lives my dream--I took my daughter and my sister's daughter's with me.   

My sister tried to send her girls with cash to pay for their own pedicures, but PSHAW!  I would NOT stand for it.  This pampered chef party was on me! 

See, one of the worst things about moving is that the whole world begins to revolve around YOU, YOU, YOU!  (Make that ME, ME, ME!)   It happens so gradually you almost don't notice it until you're sick to death of your endless list of needs.

You go to pour your kids some cereal and you make a note to self: need bowls and spoons.  You go to open a can of chili: need can opener.  The note to self goes on and on: Need rubber bands.  Need a hammer.  Need dressers.  Need a lawn mower . . . a nap . . . silicone implants. 

(J/K peeps.  I don't need silicone implants.  I mean, I do, but I got over it in my thirties.)

There is so much you can't do and so much you don't have while you're disassembling one life and reassembling another.  You rely on the grace and goodness of those around you to open your cans and mow your lawn. 

How anyone moves without my sister and her hub is the Eighth wonder of the world.  

I swore on a stack of Glenn Beck books that I would never blog about my sister's hub, but if I hadn't made such a sacred oath I would totally do my Bette Middler in Beaches Kareoke for him. (The one that require a lot of feathers to make me some wings, plus a huge fan to generate the wind beneath those wings.) 

So anyways, I just wanted to GIVE BACK to my sis and her hub, ya know!  Is that so wrong?  

I mean how hard can it be to pay for four freakin' pedicures?  

Well, it's harder than you think when they don't take American Express.  Or a personal check.  

It's even harder when you're short on cash.  

As the story goes, we ended up getting to keep our pedicures, but I had to trade in my uber cool mommy/aunt status as soon as I called for back up. 

Thank Gad for my sister's hub, who came rushing through the front door in his red cape with his VISA gold card in hand. 

(Being a pampered chef is not as easy as it looks.)

P.S. I went to Sunday School for the first time yesterday.  If I wasn't so politically correct and culturally sensative on this blog, I would say that I found the one place where people aren't nice in Utah.  I did feel the spirit though.  While everyone was challenging each other about who has emeritus and which leaders can be called acting I got an overwhelming feeling that I was being suffocated by a pillow.  

Ah ha!  I finally GET IT!  

Friday, September 11, 2009

Boom Boom Pow!

I've been thinking lately. About stuff.

My stuff in particular.

It only crosses my mind occasionally, like during the 10-12 hours a day I sit on my bare nekked wood floor with my nose pressed to the front window waiting for a large moving van to round the corner.

What if I never see my stuff again? I hold onto that thought sometimes. But then I put it back on the shelf next to all my other what ifs--what if I get skin cancer? What if my children get skin cancer? What if my hub gets skin cancer? 

What if a sunami wipes out Happy Valley before I get to the Macey's case lot sale next week?

Don't get me wrong, I'm not afraid of dying, I'm just afraid of being disfigured and hungry (without my stuff).

I have decided to write abook called Martha, and the Magic Pants. It will be loosely based on actual events.

My X-door-neighbor, Martha sent me four pair of magic pants from and they jus' so happened to arrive on the very day that I was being a bawl baby.  

Call it coincidence, or call it like it is, on that very same day that I was being a bawl baby, Val of the South gave me a big ole' bag of Lucky Charms. 

Does the Universe lub me, or what? (Either that, or Martha and Val lub me).

I think the Universe might be trying to tell me to stop hiding my testimony (of magic) under a bushel (of apples).

As soon as I slipped on my magic pants and ate a bowl of Lucky Charms, my daughter started feeling better. And not just her strep throat either. I think the universe was channeling all those air hugs ya'll sent out. If I didn't have such a stone cold heart I would send some air kisses back-at-cha! (Especially to those who texted her and sent messages to her.) 

And if I didn't have such a stone cold heart I would admit that even crash test dummies need air hugs, even though I said they didn't. But that's the beauty of a stone cold heart--you don't need anyone or anything . . . (except your stuff).

I started believing in magic because Olivia Newton John told me too.  I was thirteen at the time and I would walk downtown to the movie theater on Center street and watch Xanadu over and over again. 

But I don't need to rely on Olivia Newton John's testimony anymore.  I've seen enough pixie dust to put on my own roller skates and spread the truth . . .  

We haf ta believe we are magic, peeps!  

Nuthin can stand in our way! 
I can prove it.  

The other day I entered an essay contest.  I didn't finish my essay until four hours before the deadline and of course some unexpected complications, in the form of technical obstacles, occurred while trying to get my essay from my Mac Text Edit file to my sister's DELL Microsoft Word file.  There were internet connection problems, of course.   The first time I hit a roadblock, my daughter decided to exercise her faith by playing some Black Eyed Peas for me.
It WORKED!  It really WORKED! That skankie Fergie helped me overcome my obstacle!

The second time I hit a roadblock, she started the song over.   BINGO!  Worked AGAIN! 

Then I realized I was 315 words over the word limit so she played the song over and over until I trimmed it down to meet the criteria.  

When I hit my third roadblock I told her to play it again.  

That's when she hauled off and BBP'd me right in the mouth! 

(With great power comes great responsibility and Black Eyed Peas magic should be used sparingly, lest it lead you down the road to violence.)

Another magical thing happened yesterday.  My sis-in-law came from Maryland and my IL's took us out to lunch at, that's right, the Golden Corral. But this time I had a plan.  I showed up LATE. 

And guess what!? I finished at the same time as my MIL.  

Woohoo!  I don't need to learn any more patience!

Thursday, September 10, 2009

I'm sorry, but . . .

My apologies for being such a Debbie-downer yesterday. (Get it? Debbie-downer?) hee hee 

I hope I didn't put a damper on your day with my random bout of grief and loss.  That came out of nowhere.  But it's all good.  I'm fine.  No worries.

And my apologies for apologizing. I'm sorry about that.  It's just something we do in Utah. That's what makes us so humble and pleasant.  One of the luxuries of living in Utah is that you can say or do anything you want as long as you apologize before, during or afterwards.  And if you punctuate your apology with a "but" you can even be rude, arrogant, condescending or insincere.  

So again, I'm sorry, but can I just say MAHALO to all my peeps for their lub and support yesterday in my hour of need?  I mean, I didn't really need it, per say, (sorry) but it was a nice thought.  

Was that too mushy?  Sorry, but fo' real, the air hugs were cool.  It was like getting therapy and getting a pedicure at the same time.   

In fact, if my Dumb and Dumber cooking blog project doesn't fly, I might start a therapy/pedicure blog. You unload your pain while I give you a pedicure.  The pleasure of the pedicure will counteract the pain of the therapy.  

I'll call it Head to Foot.  

Sorry, but you have to admit it's brilliant.  

Speaking of my cooking blog, I went to IKEA with Val of the South and Jillybean today.  We ate lunch, of course.  And we talked, of course.  And we shopped, of course.  But we also purchased my first cooking blog apron.  And I struck a few poses for my profile pic.

Look Ma, no tan!

Which one should I use for my book cover when I get discovered? 

Val and Jillybean also purchased an apron so they can be Crash Test Dummies in the kitchen too. 

Jillybean is going to Bedazzle my blog name on the front of hers.  (Free advertising.)   (Sorry, Jilly, but I can't pay you.  You will be blessed for serving me so willingly though.)

And here we are after lunch.  How cute is Val (in black)? I bet she's just as cute in white.  And isn't Jilly kinda . . . dare I say . . . sexy?    And look at me.  Take a good look at my face.  

If you look closer it's easy to trace the tracks of my tears. 

(someone should write a song about that!)  

When I got home from IKEA there was a mysterious package from my x-next door neighbor, Martha. She sent me four pair of magic traveling pants.  YAY! (Do you think she wants to start a sisterhood?)   

MAHALO, Martha.  I'm sorry, but you da bomb!  U know U R!  Can't wait for the magic to begin. I think it will be soon because I heard a rumor that a Mormon author is moving into my ward.   Do you think it's Annette Lyon?  Or Stephanie Meyer?  Or Orson Scott Card?  Maybe it's my old creative writing teacher, Chris Crowe. 

I hope it's not Jack Wayland.  I'm sorry, but I HATED HATED HATED Sam so if it's Jack Wayland I'm so going to TP his house.

Wednesday, September 9, 2009

Empty chairs at empty tables

Remember that time when I lived in Hawaii?  

And my life was full of students . . . 

And friends . . .

And famous people . . .

And Wolfgang . . .

That was fun.

And remember how I always taught Les Miserables, and Wolfgang wanted to push Jean Valjean down the stairs? 


Can't really blame him, I guess. 

And remember how he thought Marius was a stalker and I told him he didn't understand the first thing about lub?


Maybe I was a little hard on him.  He's married now.

And remember that part in Les Mis when Marius sings that song about empty chairs at empty tables?

There's a grief that can't be spoken.
There's a pain goes on and on.
Empty chairs at empty tables
Now my friends, my friends are gone

Yeah, that song.  

I wish I understood that song better.

(btw, if any of you know my daughter, she could use a little teeny hug!)