Friday, May 31, 2013


Okay, okay. So some of these aren't actually Instagram photos.
Well, most of them aren't.
Isn't it funny how our generation has a trained eye for whether or not a photo has been Instagrammed??  They just have that border, than sheen. 

Anyhow, in honor of it being the last day of May, here are some of my photos of this month.
There was one in there of my ass and the perfect triangular white patch from my bikini that one day we laid out by the pool, which Eli compared to the Deathly Hallows (my ass crack being the Elder Wand of course) but I left it out. Your imagination can do the rest.
Night out with the ladies. Not quite sure why we are flipping Mr. Bird but there you have it.
My scratch/bruise bearing a miraculous resemblance to the Death Star.

I made quite a few disturbing Vine videos while house hunting.  Feel free to check them out, along with my other creepy/drunk Vines.
Here you are looking into a smoker with a brisket on top and two chickens on the bottom.
I like to call this "Texan's Garden of Eatin"
Leaning against Eli at the park reading as the sun sets. Glory glory hallelujiah.

I invented the brie-croissant with apples on the side.
This is what the inside looks like !! Melty brie cheese inside and lashings of orange marmalade on top.
Such torture to leave these Bernese pups behind!!! Someday... someday..
Freckles threw himself into helping us pack.
Vicky sent a challenge along with her package of real English Cadbury--devour it all before she arrives in July!
Do I have the greatest best friend of WHAT??? Hint: I DO.
Limoncello out of my favorite South Dakota jaw-with-a-handle. I am classing up this joint.

I painted my nails sparkly gold and everyone EVER loved it.
On Midvale's Main Street. Outside of a barber shop where this stubby, stegosaurus-haired  wench kills people.
I think it is a trashy modern version of Sweeney Todd.
OUR HOUSE!I took this when we viewed it, looking down the upper part to the front door.

I made rice krispy treats with.... THE FLAVORED MARSHMALLOWS! Just to spice things up, you know.
But they melt together and look kind of disturbingly yellow-brown, like the day after  a bad burrito.
Tasted even better though! And I stuck some unmelted colored mallows on the tops of the treats to make it clear.
Bright lips for FRIDAY!!!!!!
Friday, Friday, hot pink kisses on Friday.

Have a great weekend ya'll... see you next month! I know, that is nerdy and stupid but you can only say it once a month so just cool your heels and relish it.

Wednesday, May 29, 2013

I Didn't Know I Was a Trekkie (sort of just a little bit)

Thoughts I’ve Been Thinking

1. Tom Petty was right.
About lots of stuff of course, but I am referencing in particular "Waiting is the hardest part."  Now that we have this beautiful brick house under contract, we have to wait.  Everything is going along of course--the loan process, and we have the inspection on Tuesday, but then...
And it isn't as though we can get it ready to live in because the owners will live there until the end of June and we can't buy new furniture to go in it because we have nowhere to keep it.
So we have to wait wait wait wait and then the flood gates open--we get the house keys, we change the locks, we buy new furniture and move it in, Vicky arrives, we party, we go to Vegas...
July is going to be hella crazy.  And right now is sooo slow! So it is frustrating and I find myself humming that under my breath whenever I daydream about our house.
Also, a bunch of people we know/are related to have gotten houses that were unoccupied. So they got to move in a matter of days. Like "we got a place" and shazam 3 days later they reside in it.  JEALOUSY.
2. Meanness is exhausting and contagious.  I can always tell it is going to be a rough day at work if I open my inbox first thing and there is a grouchy, demanding email from a Loan Officer.
Soon enough, more of them flood in, all in the same vein.  They are so mean! And for no reason!
And they always compound into the same day.  And even if that day is slow and I don't have much work, I end up tired out from the meanness.  I think everyone should be friends with everyone.
3. I find the term “tender mercies” hysterical.  I was introduced to it the other evening by a friend, who’s mother says it all the time (while clutching her hand to her heart, based on his re-enactment). She thinks that anything nice (like your favorite meal being the special at a restaurant, or your fire alarm going off before you burn the house down) is a tender mercy and loves to proclaim it.
I have yet to witness someone seriously and endearingly exclaim “oh what a tender mercy!” and I cannot wait for the day.  For now, envisioning usages of that glorious term will suffice.
4. .  I found this old fashioned style telephone gadget while we were packing stuff up in our apartment.  It is a brass one, with the headset and mouthpiece, that sits in the palm of your hand.  I got it when I volunteered at the haunted local museum, and I’ve always had it sitting around decoratively, but it doesn’t DO anything and it is little so no guests are ever like “WOW! What an incredible 2 inch centerpiece you’ve got there” so I figured I would toss it.  And then I noticed that it has a pencil sharpener in the base. Holy crap, how did I not know this??! I don’t ever write with pencils, but I did notice that very morning
5. Why do they keep making all these Hollywood blockbusters set in/about space, after NASA was cancelled?  Obviously space is the tits and NASA rocks and should not have been cancelled.
I heard NASA has actually had a major role in these big space movies coming out, so it is like a giant advertisement/charity event for NASA going "doooon't shut us down, see how cool this stuff is?!"
I hope it works.  Or they're going to have Jack Kennedy's ghost on their hands.
6. Robert F. Kennedy Jr. wrote an absolutely fabulous comparison piece on Obama and Nixon.
It is goooood.  Well researched and well written, and he references his family.
Read it here.
7.  I recently realized I am kind of a baby Trekkie. Which I didn't realize because I have always been a huge Star Wars fan.  I didn't even see the first Star Trek and then my family and I went to the second one and I was excited by how good it was, and going off on the reversal that they pulled in the end (with the radiation and Kirk and Spock) and everyone was staring at me, like "what the hell are you talking about?" and I explained it, and then I went off on the allegorical purpose of Star Trek and why Roddenberry created it for TV in the first place. My Dad said "I didn't even know you knew who Roddenberry was!!"  He thought the most I had been exposed to it was when we watched the Star Trek whales movie all the time when I was a kid, and then a few years ago we went to the Monterrey Bay Aquarium where they filmed it, and we recognized it and had a good laugh.
Eli was also ignorant to my knowledge. We watched the first new Star Trek movie and I liked it too, but I explained the way they changed things and the history of the Vulcans and even surprised myself.  So who knew?? And how do I even know all this?
8.  I just realized there are some things that can make me instantly blissful, mostly because they take me back, as in back into my past, and things that brought me joy in my younger years.
These include driving with the windows down while listening to Death Cab For Cutie, reading Harry Potter, rummaging book sales, watching I Love Lucy, and thunderstorms.
9. The history of the United States--particularly our colonial founding.
This is so often stereotyped as being a worthy struggle of good Anglo Saxon people.  You see those children's book illustrations of pilgrims building the fence of a fort, or toiling in the earth harvesting crops, and then gathering their family 'round a giant roast bird to give thanks for America's bounty.
Which is dandy, but also cheapens what really happened.
Just think about showing up on a rugged, undeveloped coast, and trying to start a new life in a wild place among unknown natives (that your culture has taught you are savages).
It is pretty terrifying.  Not to mention the sicknesses and starvations...  Knowing the full history brings our colonial ancestors to life and makes you appreciate what they accomplished even more.
I've always been pretty cynical about this period in American history, but I've been reading more about it and watching the National Geographic special called "Nightmare in Jamestown" and it is staggering.
And illuminating.

And now, purely for your entertainment and mine, some funnies. With everyday parallels.
What Eli likes to do with our entire bed comforter to piss me off when I'm cold.

ME. When someone in our apartment lets their car alarm go off for more than 5 minutes.

Me trying to go up and down the stairs in my high high heels at work.

What I do when Eli tells me I can have "1 glass of wine."

What I want to tell a few of my guy friends after meeting their horrendous girlfriends.

Me on Saturday mornings.

Eli with a box of Cheese-Its.  It is a real addiction.

And now, some hilarious things having nothing to do with anything.

Happy Hump Day Ya'll !

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Hope is the thing with feathers

"Our house.. is a very very very fine house!"
You know what that means…
Yep, we got a house. A better house.
Oh, and did you enjoy that entirely random video with Disney movies??! I did!!

A refresher:  We got a cute old house in Sugarhouse, but the inspection went awfully and it had so so many problems so we withdrew from the contract and then hit the house hunting hard because we need to get into a place ASAP.
So Thursday night we went out with our agent for a big house hunting extravaganza.  Which sounds kind of fun (mainly because I used the term “extravaganza” and could be fun if it weren’t so damn stressful).
We had a list of 8 or 10 houses to see all over the valley. 
It did not start well.  We saw this giant house that the previous owners had obviously had rooms custom built for—the listing mentioned a “craft room for the wife” and “tool shed for the husband” or some such nonsense.  As if wives don’t have tools and husbands don’t do crafts.
Eli has done plenty of crafts and I actually came into our marriage with more tools than he did! He had an old screwdriver with the handle falling off and I showed up with an entire kit and a box of screws and anchors.  And when I say “kit” I mean WD-40, leveler,hammer, pliers, duct tape, the whole shebang.
So I hate when listings have that sexist crap.
And this so called “craft room” was set up terrible with allof these mismatched cabinets and desks all built-in this oblong room.  You would have a hell of a time revamping it,and I kept picturing creepy porcelain dolls lining the shelves in there anddecided that was the “craft” in question the room was built for, and we immediately ruled the house out.
We saw another one that was okay, but it felt closed-off tome and I got claustrophobic and Eli was frustrated because he liked it and I just kept repeating “we aren’t going to settle, we’ll find the right one.”  I’ve been clinging to that EVERYTHING HAPPENS FOR A REASON stance in this house-hunting debacle and thank goodness because it is true. And murmuring Emily Dickinson under my breath—
“Hope” is the thing with feathers -
That perches in the soul-
And sings the tune without the words -
And never stops - at all…

The next house we saw was IT.
Pulling into the neighborhood we commented on the remarkable location—near our families  Near the freeway! A short drive from work!—and the lovely state of the neighborhood itself.  We pulled up and the place is a darling rambler with a landscaped front yard and bright orange poppies exploding near the front door.
Which to me was like a massive green light luring me in to my future home.
Eli grabbed for my hand and started rocking on the balls of his feet, the way he does when he is really excited, as we waited for Mike the Realtor to unlock the front door.
The layout of this house is very open and makes it feel twice as big as it really is!
It has two bay windows in front and an open living room to dining room to kitchen format on the main level.  There is a half stairs curving upward to the top level, and another half stair that descends into an open den.  It is one of those modern multi-levels and has 3 bathrooms. YES, 3 !! And 4 bedrooms (one of them destined to be my library).  It has a Master with private connected bath and walk-in closet and a cute little yard perfect for the riotous flowers and herbs I’m planning.
We immediately loved it, and took the owner’s wine collection and Dallas Cowboy’s memorabilia as a good omen (both are hard to find in Utah, and both are things near and dear to Eli and myself).
There is only carpet on the stairs and the downstairs bathroom, so the rest of the house is bamboo flooring (that looks like beautiful wood) and tile—AMAZING!
The best thing about this house is that it is ready to go.  With the other house, the one we withdrew from, we would have to do overhaul on it a week or two before moving in (installing new carpet, painting, putting on rain gutters, having dead trees removed).  For this current house, we can unload our bed and toothpaste and move right in.  Which is a relief because my best friend Miss Victoria arrives about a week after we take ownership of the house.  She is staying with us for 3 weeks for her holiday so we’ll need to plan a guest bedroom for her as well… making our priorities a dining room table and chairs, a sofa or two, and anything necessary for her guest bedroom.  And a backyard grill.
All the other furniture can wait—there is no rush in filling our house up with it when we have time to plan and get it just right.  We’ll end up re-painting later on to make things more “our own” (like the black kitchen cabinets…hmmm) but it looks quite beautiful as is.
Eli sofa "testing"
We scoured the furniture stores this weekend, thinking there would be some killer Memorial Day sales. There weren’t.  Which is okay,since we aren’t really buying right now anyway—we are going to get house measurements when the inspection takes place and why buy furniture when you have nowhere to put it?

Well enough about the house, here is what else we got up to this weekend…
A celebratory drink and dance with friends on Friday night(a few hours after we got the house under contract)…
We ended up at the nearby swinger’s bar for some pool and creeper observing…

A BOOK SALE! Well, if you can call it that.  I noticed a little local book shack had “going out of business” signs plastered on it, and they were advertising 10 books for$1.  So clearly I shit a brick and drug Eli down there after work on Friday but they were closed.  Saturday was their last day open so we got there as early as we could with our hangovers and when we pulled in, the sign had been amended to “FREE BOOKS.”  I danced in the door and proceeded to gather 6 tottering stack fulls.
They didn’t have anything particularly intellectual (Faulkner, Fitzgerald,Hemingway, James) but they had some hysterical romance paperbacks and vintage science fiction with classic taglines on the front.  One of the books had a review that said “the best writing I’ve seen in a lot of years” and we took it home with us on that merit alone.
I was in an absolute frenzy at the bookstore and found a few gems  and tried to pay the owners for them but they wouldn’t let me!! They said“nonsense, enjoy” and I thanked them for feeding my addiction and off we went to visit the historic Main Street of Midvale, Utah.
Which you might recognize from The Sandlot (we’ve been hitting up a lot of the filming locales from this movie lately!!).  This is the old drugstore (where they buy baseballs in the movie) that has been closed for many many years, but they’ve kept the historic sign(thank goodness). We also found a fun old sports card shop on Main Street and picked up some Dallas Cowboy cards for our nephews. 
Then off to my new favorite restaurant, the best local burger joint ever.
I’ve been dying to try it, just based on the exterior, for years.  So we finally hit it up and the food was glorious.  It was the best pastrami sandwich I have EVER had.  I couldn’t even finish it.  The fries were golden and crisp and fresh,Eli’s burger was grilled to juicy, cheesy perfection, and the chocolate milkshake tied it all together.  I will be back.  Again. And Again.
Then some more furniture shopping, and off to my family’s house for a birthday dinner for my brother. We went out to Joe’s Crab Shack and it was delicious (those spicy Great Balls of Fire are amazing)!
We went to bed early that night—completely zonked from having stayed out until 3 am the night before.
On Sunday we spent some time by the pool in the sun, cleaned up more of the apartment and packed away some donations, went to market for some fresh fruit, then went to a barbecue at a friend’s place, for which I made my famous jalapeno poppers and Eli revised my bean dip recipe. Both were a huge success and we had a ball, and had a post-party with another friend.  We hit up A Bar Named Sue for some pool, and then had a late night (early morning) breakfast at Denny’s.
Monday was for boring things like laundry, but we had a delightful nap outside in the grass listening to birdsong. It was a good day for being thankful for the servicemen and women who have protected our country and allowed us to take outdoor naps in the backyard, knowing we are safe.
And thank goodness the weather held for the long weekend,because today it is cold and rainy, which it is supposed to be for the next several days.  I’m fine with that, since I love the rain, and will be shut inside doing work, though I hate my new desk where I cannot gaze dreamily at the raindrops outside my 8 foot window. 

 Oh and have you seen the fuss about this "Hitler teapot" ??
 So funny!
I see what they are talking about, but come on.. it is a kitchen necessity, not a silver dictator...though they both are full of hot air (ha! Couldn't help myself).
If anything, don't blame the designed, blame the person that took the photograph from that angle.
And blame the people driving past the billboard allowing themselves to work up a head of steam over such nonsense.
If we see people standing under the billboard saluting it, that is cause for concern, but really it is something ironic to be laughed off.


Oh, and here's a bonus to this post: last night I came up with an ultimate treat.... THE FLUFFERNUTTER COOKIE. Peanut butter cookies on either side and marshmallow filling in the middle. Holy crap heavenly goodness.

Happy Tuesday (that feels like Monday!)

Friday, May 24, 2013

Boy Scouts and Unflushed Toilets

Wooohooo Boy Scouts!
There will be no ban on gays participating, as they should.  All is almost right in the scouting world.
They still have a ban on adults involved in scouting being homosexual though.  Which is ridiculous--like "we'll accept you and your sexual preferences until you turn 18."  So boys can be active in scouts growing up, but then cannot become Scout Leaders or anything,
as if being a gay boy is innocent, but a gay man is a threat to all Scouts.
Explain that one to me..? Are they assuming homosexuals are so depraved that their 18th birthday rolls around and BOOM! They're like I suddenly have the urge to rape those young Scout boys under my command as Scout Master...???????  I DON'T THINK SO.

My brother was in the Scouts for years and years and my Dad was a Cub Master.
We had a lot of fun, though it was often difficult, since in Utah the Boy Scouts of America tends to be run by the Mormon Church.
So there is a lot of exclusionary stuff going on and it can be tricky trying to keep religion out of it.

I never belonged to the Girl Scouts, but I sure enjoyed participating in Boy Scout activities with my brother (and kicking the boy's asses at stuff).

In other news, we are on the house hunt again.  It is incredibly stressful.
And I've found quite a few interesting things in the listings that I check on most days.
It really makes you wonder what people are thinking when they
A) Take photos of their house when it is a complete dump.  Shouldn't you pick up a bit so the potential buyer can see the floor? And is not distracted by the moldy cereal bowls scattered around the counter?

B) Remedy anything terrifying that might scare people away. Case-in-point: The house that has "CHERISH" scratched into the living room wall. In HUGE block letters and looks like someone did it with a dagger.
If your kitchen looks like Charles Manson recently ran amok in your house, you may want to cover that up too.

C) Take decent photos of things that matter. I've seen a listing with 2 images, one a close-up of the cracked front porch steps, and another of a dirty light fixture. There are also a ton of images that are taken at bad angles and are fuzzy or low quality.  And don't include your baby in the picture. There are creeps out there.

D)  FLUSH. YOUR. TOILET. Or put the lid down before you take pictures of that shit (literal shit).

If you can't flush your toilet it makes me wonder what major issues you have that have carried over to the house. If you can't take care of going to the bathroom alone, you probably have not maintained the integrity of a the structure and therefore I do not want to live there.

Yes, the photo on the left is one I really came across a few days ago .EWWWW!

Let me show you some examples.  These are real photos taken off of current listings in the Salt Lake Valley.

 What is this? A mattress against the wall with a shelf in front of it??
 I don't even know what this is. But it looks to be in a state of disrepair.
 Thanks for the smoky close-up of this brick, and like 1 other picture of the house bro.
 What is this? A MESS.
 Hoarders, much?
 "Let's eat a bunch of crap, not put it away, and take photos to put online!"
 Is this your.. garage?? How am I supposed to tell how many cars fit in here among all your crap?

 I don't even know what I am looking at here.  But I don't like it.
Oh wow, does this plant come with the house?? That clinches it, lets buy.

 There is nothing really wrong with this, but that horse creeps me out...
It is looking into my soul!
Do you get that sensation??

Anyhow, you can get a general notion of just what is out there based on these photos...
I see so many of them a day and just had to share.
Story in short-- DON'T PUT PHOTOS OF YOUR POOP ONLINE! For everyone to see! Especially when it is on a real estate are pretty much selling your shit.
And I'm sure you don't want to deal with the kind of people that express interest in that.

Long weekend partaaaaaay