Dan and I have a running joke about the use of the greeting “aloha” in church. Mostly the joke is about how annoying it it, and how even more annoying it is when they want you to say it back.

Speaker: ALOOOHA!

Congregation: Aloha


Congregation: ALOHA

And so forth. So last Sunday I was sitting in Sacrament meeting by myself (I had to go to an earlier ward due to baby sickness) and the speaker got up and said “Buenos Dias!”. The lady sitting next to me (who pretty much hadn’t stopped talking since I sat down) leaned over to me and said, “I like it better when they say ALOHA! It wakes everyone up when we have to say it back”.

I could only nod, smile, and wish that Dan had been there.

My List of Buckets

Last week I was at my parents house sorting through some old books and whatnot and I came across a notebook I kept while I was on my mission. On the back cover I had written “Things I want to do in life” with a quaint little list of life dreams and life aspirations. They included learning how to play the organ (not yet), becoming a master gardener (my windowsill herb selection will tell you I am a serial plant killer), and run a marathon (I walked to the mail box today…does that count?).

That list was created at a time in my life when I thought I would live the kind of existence where plants and running would be the pinnacle of  achievement. My goals were simple and somewhat drab. Now that I’ve been home and worldly-ized, I’ve updated my “bucket list” and would like to share it…now.

  • See the following bands live:

-Depeche Mode


-The Violent Femmes (do they still exist?)



-Amy Winehouse

  • Shake hands with Tina Fey (and possibly smell her hair…)
  • Learn how to make really good home made bread
  • Sew a dress…that I will actually wear.
  • Swim off the coast of Puerto Rico
  • Visit M5
  • Shoot an automatic machine gun
  • Memorize all the words to “The Raven” (I’m half way there)
  • Eat authentic paella (again)
  • Own a nice set of kitchen shearers
  • Milk a goat (again)
  • Write something that gets made into a movie, short film, high school student project, or home video.
  • Teach my children to say “D’oh!” when they bonks their head (working on it)
  • Actually read all of “Crime and Punishment” instead of just telling people I did.
  • Learn how to juggle
  • Learn how to use chop sticks (I’ve tried, oh how I’ve tried)
  • Learn how to do stained glass windows
  • Live somewhere near the ocean
  • Visit Thailand
  • Make the world a better place (In honesty I don’t care but I feel like I should put that)

There it is. My updated Things to Do Before I Kick It list. What’s on yours? Close your eyes and think about it now.


I cringe every time I here the phrase, “I learned in a documentary…” and then someone tries to teach me something they learned in a documentary. Don’t get me wrong. I LOVE a good documentary and watch them all the time. We just watch one on North Korea the other day that turned my blood cold.

The reason I lurch when I hear someone quote a documentary is that most documentaries are propaganda based. That doesn’t mean they are inaccurate necessarily, it just means for the most part they are agenda driven. Most documentaries do have a lot of good, reliable and repeatable information in them. I just cringe when I hear people quote a documentary as social or scientific doctrine knowing they haven’t done any farther research on the topic.

For example…and Dan will roll his eyes on this one…we watched a docu a while back called “The Business of Being Born”. It presented horrific statistics on the ‘abysmal’ process of having a baby in a hospital with ‘evil’ doctor intervention. After the movie I went and looked up a majority of their stats. Most were taken out of context, needed further research, or were just plain not true. Then I found out the movie was made primarily by a group midwives and Riki Lake. This review kinda sums up what I thought about it.

The problem is I hear people quote the movie and I know they haven’t done any external research on it. And that’s the overlying problem I see with the way documentaries are digested. The material in the movies is fine, but pretty much every documentary is made by a group or person pushing a cause or trying to change the way we think, for good or for bad.

I hear people tell me that plastic water bottles are the devil because of a docu they saw. or that eating meat after 8 pm will give me colon cancer, or that every frozen turkey in the store was once a miserable and abused bird in a butcher factory. These things may be true but farther research needs to be done by the individuals who watch the movies before internalize and evangelizing the information.


In Da Money

So I recently watched a video on YouTube about a guy who asked the Internet for a million dollars and some rich guy responded to gave him the mullah. Watch it here. Now if you note, there is no exchange of goods or receipt of anything in return for this millionaire who is dolling out the dinero. That got me to thinking, as stupid YouTube videos usually do, and I came up with an even better plan to bag a million buckaroos.

I may not have a lot to offer a millionaire who is looking for a ridiculous place to throw his money, but I do have a few very valuable skills. One such skill; I write a mad limerick. That’s right. For a million dollars I will write the best damn limerick you’ve ever heard, dedicated to the purveyor of said greenbacks. I’m dead serious. Here is a sample of my limerick skillz. They’re mad. Mad skillz.

The Snookie declares a name change

To something perceived as less strange

While a rose does smell sweet

when called stinky feet

The Snookie will still be deranged

There. See. Mad skillz.

A Bad Rap: TSA Goes Pop Culture

Poor poor TSA. They have been the butt of so much bad press. Hang on a sec, I have to regain composure from that last little pun…

Back. So I’ve been thinking of ways to help out our friends in blue from this apparent PR nightmare. My best idea? They need to tap into the vast resource that is THE VIRAL VIDEO. TSA needs to make a top viewed vid, like the Old Spice guy or Charlie Bit my Finger and like and such as. I figured they may not have a great creative writing team on hand so I’ve taken it upon myself to jot down a few quick ideas for them. Here you go TSA! No worries on the copy right. Knowing that I gave you a hand in your quest to get back on top is reward enough for me.

*A parody of Josh Groban’s music video “You Lift Me Up”. Instead of hearing the crooning craftsman sing his little heart away, it would be a much hipper video. Same song, different artist. I would call it “Josh Gropin’ and his TSA backups sings, You Lift Me Up”. And it would be too risque for an American audience.

*A work out video short featuring TSA agents in blue shirts and leg warmers. Can’t you just see it? “And grope! And back! And squeeze! And back! Put some heart into it ladies! You want to make sure you get that extra poke in the fanny!”

*A parody of the double rainbow video…because it hasn’t been done enough. “Ooooohhh….it looks likes its going to be…a triple groping…”

Those are my ideas. Feel free to forward them to any TSA agent. TSA talent agent that is.

A Litmus Test..

Back in my dating days I had quite a few experiences that at the time I thought “This is horrifying, but give it a few years and it will make a great story”.

Some of those experiences are still to traumatic for retelling (like my one and only date with a member of the BYU football team…) but there’s one that I think has had enough time to become a slightly amusing recount.

The date was doomed from the get go. I’d met this guy in a parking lot–let me explain–when we were completing the transaction of a book I’d purchased from him on BYU’s textbook exchange program. We chatted and then parted ways. I noticed he was tall…a plus for an awkwardly 5’9″ female.

A few days later I got a call (clever boy had gotten my number somehow) and he asked me out for dinner the following night. Details of the evenings events were sparse, only that he’d pick me up at 7 and we were going to dinner.

I dressed as any self respecting single woman would for a date; horribly uncomfortable shoes, a pair of tight pants and a light-weight top (even thought it was November).

When he picked my up he informed me, as we walked out of my apartment down to the street, that he didn’t have a car and so we would be walking to dinner. “Ok” I thought, “no car but we’ll probably just go somewhere down the street or something”.

WRONG. We walked two and a half miles. I’m not kidding. And to where??? you might ask. DI. Yep. Not a restaurant. Not a place to eat. To DI. He said he thought we could pick out funny things to buy for each other. In the words of Lucille Bluth, this did not ‘bode well’.

After an hour and a half of wandering around DI (keep in mind I hadn’t eaten dinner yet…ask Dan…that can make me…shall we say…cranky?) we finally made our purchases and then he announced we would finally be eating dinner.

Our destination was going to be Betos…which is barely edible Mexican cuisine, at best. Its a step above Casa Bonita…if you know what I mean.

To get to Betos we had to walk under a bridge next to the river. I noticed a sign that read “CAUTION: HIGH WATER LEVELS” and remarked, “That sign is foreboding”. My date then remarked (and I am not making this up…and he was not joking), “Uh… I don’t think there are any boats on the Provo River”. Get it? He sure didn’t.

Dinner was long and gross. During the course of the meal he actually called his LDS bishop and had me talk to him about what a great guy my date was. Oh my.

So, to make a long story short, 6 moths later I married that guy…JUST KIDDING. Dan is much smarter than he was. At least he knows what the word ‘foreboding’ means.

Mom’s the Word

Alright. So I’ve been a mom now for almost a year and surprise surprise! Eli is still alive. While in my single years I would always fret about the possibility of becoming a parent because I had a knack for executing any and all house plants that fell under my jurisdiction. But now that I’ve produced offspring I’ve realized that I care a lot more about my child than I did my fica plant. So, drawing on a year’s worth of experience, here’s a list of the things I’ve learned from being a mom so far.

*Never turn your back on a walker. Within five minutes the house can get destroyed. I’m not talking a few pillows on the ground, I’m talking bricks and mortar crumbling and windows shattering.

*People, no matter how old or how many kids they have, will always laugh when you tell them stories of afore mentioned destruction. This is something I still can’t understand. Me: Eli ate the business end of a permanent marker yesterday and had black all over his face and hands. Person: HAHAHAHAHA!

It really wasn’t funny. It was traumatizing.

*Most parenting books are crap. There. I said it. They are mostly all written by doctors who either never had children or haven’t had kids around for a long time. They make you feel guilty for doing everything from feeding your child to letting him climb on the back of a moving car…well…that last one may be justified. But you get the point. If I have a medical question I check the Googles. Other than that, I work on advice from friends and trial and error.

*No matter how many times I yell “No SCREAMING please!” He continues to do so. I don’t know where he gets that…

*There is no greater feeling that cuddling up in the rocking chair and reading a bedtime story. The only thing that may be able to trump that is actual bedtime.

*I can and will put things in my mouth that have previously been in Eli’s mouth. This may sound gross, and it is, but when I’m sitting in church and he starts grabbing handfuls of goldfish and then immediately spitting them out, its easier to eat them than to pick them up and hold soggy fish on my lap for 20 minutes.

*Last, babies may not want to do all the things you have been planning on doing with them. For instance, all I’ve ever wanted to do was sit down with my own child and read him or her “Miss Suzy”, which is the best children’s book ever written. I was blessed, however, with a child who will not sit still and read a book unless it’s a pop-up book and has moving parts. I guess I’ll have to wait it out on that one.

All in all its been a smashing good time. Adding more kids to the mix at this point gives me hives just thinking about it but I do think little guy needs a buddy. So we’ll have to bite the bullet sooner or later and go buy him a new puppy…er…have another baby.

Spooky Scary: My Top Ten

I love halloween. Always have, always will. There’s something about being able to dress up as something cool and eat as much candy as I can fit in my open trap. Probably my favorite part of halloween is watching my favorite scary movies during the month of October. I’ve racked up quite a list of yearly traditional favorites. I’m a bit of a wimp when it comes to horror flicks, however. I love to be scared, but I hate being traumatized. So I’ve spent years finding just the perfect films that scare but don’t scar. Here are my top ten.

10-Hocus Pocus. Not scary, but lovable to any and all who were of childhood age during the 90s. Great for a fun Halloween watch without any real ounce of adrenaline.

9-The Watcher in the Woods-This movie may have done some psychological damage to my young brain back in the day. For some reason I saw this movie WAAAY before I should have. Its pretty scary. But a good time nonetheless if you like sci-fi horror flicks. Watch the alternate ending for a great unicorn chaser afterwards.

8-Disturbia-We revisited this one recently and I was impressed. It has a great mix of suspense and teenage frivolity. Yes. I just typed the word frivolity. But seriously, I would recommend this as a good scare that won’t leave you up all night.

7-Night of the Living Dead (the original)-This one goes on my list every year. It was really a cutting edge film at the time and started the zombie film movie trend. Great for classic BRAAAAAAIIIINSS entertainment.

6-The Ring-Alright, I know its a pretty popular flick but I actually really love this movie. Dan will tell you its because I always shut my eyes at the scariest moments, but I think the spooky, implausible plot really speaks the my scary bone.

5-Sleepy Hollow-This is an all-time favorite. I LOVE Sleepy Hollow. The setting is fantabulous and nothing beats a stoic Jonny Depp riding a horse while fleeing a dead German Christopher Walken. I watch it every Halloween season, no fail.

4-Young Frankenstein-A silly choice for sure but I absolutely adore this Mel Brooks classic. It even has a few eery moments mixed in with all the comedy. A great watch for the whole family (unless you have young family members who get innuendo…in that case…put them to bed first).

3-All of The Simpsons Halloween Specials-Alright, its not a movie, but we’ve been making a tradition of watching all the Halloween episodes during October. Of course, the early ones are far better than the later, but they’re still all worth a watching.

2-The Nightmare Before Christmas-When asked what my favorite movie is I always answer with this title. I think I’m raising a little “Nightmare”-ite of my own. Eli watch it for the first time yesterday and held still for most of the musical numbers. *little tear*

1-Psycho-There’s no other place to put this one than at number one. The word classic doesn’t even begin to describe the cinematic greatness that is Psycho. If you have the chance, watch the ‘making of” documentary. Its pretty fascinating.

Liberating the fowl.