Monday, December 10, 2007

General update about weekend and snow

So I had an interesting, but mostly productive, weekend. On Saturday I had written a list of about 14 items I wanted to accomplish. I got about 5 done, but they were pretty big items. First I had a baby shower to go to, which was fun and gave me a chance to chat with other women. I hope when (if) I have a baby shower, it goes as well. Lots of people came and we had a lot of fun. One of the games, which I'd never done, is they take 10 baby diapers and melt a different candy bar in each; then we had to guess what candy bar it was. It caused much laughs, especially from moms who have seen diapers that looked exactly like them (though did not smell so nice). It was especially realistic because they gave it to us right after being melted, so the diapers were still warm.

Then I was all about going through things in my apartment and getting rid of them. I think this may have to do with my nesting urges, which I hear pregnant women have. I just have this, "I have too much stuff. As much as possible needs to go!" mentality lately. So I went through everything and got rid of as much as possible. This included our old vacuum, since we got new one recently, some old chairs we no longer need, and a whole lot of clothes and kitchen stuff. So I put them all out in the car ready to take to DI. Then when I was fairly sure I'd gotten the majority of things, I went to go to the car and found it had started to snow, but it wasn't too bad--it had just started to cover the roads and sidewalks. So I left and went to the vacuum store. I needed to get a new belt for it so it would work for the new owners (and since a new one is only $2, I figure why not).

By the time I left the vacuum store, the snow was really coming down and there was already 2-3 inches on the ground, but I was determined to go to DI, which was only like 3 miles down the road, so I went on.

Everyone on the road was going really slow, which I appreciated (except the occasional SUV that would go zipping by at the normal speed. What makes SUV drivers think they can drive like that? Even if they have 4-wheel drive, with everyone else going slow, it's unsafe. Plus there is a reason so many SUVs get in accidents in this weather. SUV drivers are generally over-confident). So after about 30 min or more to go 3 miles, I finally got to DI and dropped off the stuff. The back of the drop-off point has a road that you can follow to get backto the main road. Usually this is a great way to go because you can turn left onto the busy road at a light, but today, the hill you go up to get to the main road was very slippery. I almost turned right to avoid it, and hope I could figure out a way to get back, but the light turned green so I went on. Now, I have a little '89 Corolla--not exactly the car to be driving in snow. As I went up the hill, I was turning my wheel to right and left trying to keep from going off to the side or hitting oncoming traffic. Unlike drivers in front of me who stayed in the center where it was the most slippery, I tried to drive more torwards the middle where there was snow. This helped me to gain traction so I could make it up the hill, though slowly. I seriously thought I was going to get in an accident, but luckily did not.

Finally, I made it back to the main road and home. Boy was I glad to be back and off the road and I vowed to not go on the road any more that day. I also felt very relieved to get those things out of my house and to have more room. Yay! So overall a good productive day.

This morning I had another prenatal appt. Everything seems to be going well and the baby had a good heartbeat. I haven't gained any weight since the last appt 4 weeks ago, which is good since I (in my opinion) had gained too much before the last appt. That puts my total gain around 18 lbs. Hopefully I won't gain too much in this last trimester *crosses fingers*. I had to do the glucose test today. I was really worried about this because I heard the thing you drink is gross. For some reason, I pictured drinking pink, syrupy sludge, but luckily it was basically orange soda, which didn't really taste too bad, so I just downed it. After not eating since last night, I was ready for it. I then found out I had to wait an hour after for them to take a blood sample. I didn't realize that or I would've asked to drink it when I checked in. Oh, well. When I went to have my blood drawn, it was done by someone who was inexperienced. This is why I'm afraid of donating blood. It hurt quite a bit (and is still sore) and I guess it took longer to have the blood come out since I was fasting (you can't eat for at least two hours before the glucose test, but I had chosen not to eat at all since before going to bed the night before). So not fun. I'm glad it's all over, though.

Still to do: Clean up living room and make room for Christmas tree. Set up Christmas tree and decorate. Put up other Christmas decorations. Can you believe that I haven't put up decorations yet? Christmas is in two weeks!

What makes me happy: I only have two weeks of work before I have a week and a half off. Yay! What also makes me happy: I made Josh Groban's new Noel album into ringtones on my phone.

Wednesday, December 5, 2007

Pregnancy Update

Just thought I'd post a recent picture of me and pregnant belly. It's not the best picture (my husband wasn't very into taking a picture of me). We got a new camera last week that is a HUGE upgrade from our old one. Our old one is 5.5 years old, has 1.3 megapixels, and essentially sucks (or at least by today's standard). Our new one has 7 megapixels, 12x optical zoom, and takes video, and we got a 2-GB memory card for it, so there is plenty of storage for it. The only real downfall is that it doesn't come with a lithium ion battery that is rechargable, just one of those ones that aren't rechargable. So I'm looking into getting one that is rechargable plus a charger (together around $50). I think it will be worth it so that we don't go through batteries quickly. Especially since a replacement non-rechargable lithium battery is like $7. I figure the rechargable will pay for itself quickly.

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Monday, November 5, 2007

Pillow Heaven

So on Monday (10/29) I had a prenatal checkup. I asked my doctor if there was anything I could do to sleep better and he recommended two things: contoured pillow (made of dense memory foam) and a body pillow. So that night after water aerobics (at the Gold's Gym by Costco), I stopped by Costco to see what they had. They only had one contoured pillow and no body pillows. I wasn't sure if that pillow was the one I wanted, but I figured it was Costco--the land of eternal returns. You can pretty much return anything besides electronics even if it's been years since you bought it. 

So I decided to give it a try (it was actually a two-pack. This is Costco, afterall). So I have been using the pillow since and I had NO idea what a difference this pillow would make. I have to say, i wasn't even sure it would be comfortable, but between the velour cover and the memory foam, it is amazing! First, I feel complete support on my neck, which allows me to sleep on my back or my side (before I could only sleep on my back. If I tried to sleep on my side, I would have a kink in my neck). Second, before if I tried sleep on my side, not only my neck, but many times my ear would hurt really bad, and I'd only be able to stay on my side about a half hour. I was worried about this because I've heard that it's hard to sleep on your back when you get further along in your pregnancy. I was hoping I'd be an exception, but I now I don't have to worry so much. 

So basically, I went from sleeping a few hours at a time and then waking up because I was uncomfortable (and sometimes taking awhile to fall back asleep) to sleeping 6-7 hours in a row before waking and then being able to fall back asleep rather easily. I was also having issues with my back hurting (which is due partly to how I sit at work) which would add to my not sleeping well, but I haven't had any backpain since getting this pillow either. So yeah, I'm pretty happy with my purchase. I still have that extra pillow, but I figure I can keep it for either guests and/or when the first one stops giving me support. My husband tried it for about 5 minutes and didn't like it, so I guess it's not for everyone.

Friday, November 2, 2007

Baby Update

I felt the baby move for the very first time. I know he's been moving, but I never felt it before. It is definitely a weird sensation. Even though it's very cool, I'm not looking forward to when he's keeping me up at night. But still, I felt him move!!! 

Wednesday, October 31, 2007

Happy Halloween!

Hope everyone had a fun and safe Halloween. Mine was mostly uneventful. I wore my costume to work--got quite a few compliments. The kids of employees were allowed to come by from 3 to 5 p.m. to Trick-or-Treat, which was fun. Then tonight, my husband and I watched a movie in between getting up for Trick-or-Treaters. We didn't get a ton--around 20 or so. I was pretty beat by the end of the night, but it was a fun day.  I think Janci will be proud. After just one sewing lesson over two years ago, I sewed this cape. Granted, it was an "easy sew" pattern, but I added an extra liner, and think it turned out pretty good. Lot of work, though!

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

Baby Update

So, yesterday I had my 20-week ultrasound. For those in the know, that means that we found out the sex of our baby and we're having . . . a BOY! And he appears to be perfectly healthy. Here's a cute little picture of him:

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

Vouchers vs. No Vouchers in Utah

Okay, so I'm really, really sick of hearing about people who don't want vouchers for schools here in Utah. I believe that it comes down to parents who listen to teachers and the public school system rather than learning about it for themselves. I had a class at BYU where we discussed the voucher system and how it would change the school system, and so I feel I have better grasp on what would change if Utah adopted this system, and seeing as I will have a child who will be starting school in Utah beginning Fall 2013, I feel I should get to have an opinion about this.  


  1. The US has just about the best University system out of the world. Why? Because the system is competitive. Schools know that to get the student's money, they have to have the best teachers, the best programs, and the best system for educating the students. It makes the students work harder so that they can get into the best schools in the country as well. So basically it makes the schools and the students better.

    On the other hand, the US has one of the poorest public school systems compared to other countries of equal status. Why? Because there is no competition. Let me ask you, Who gets into Harvard, Yale, and other Ivy League schools? Are the majority of accepted students poor? Did they go to public schools or private schools?

    Our public schools aren't preparing students to go to Ivy League universities, unless maybe they live in a rich area where a lot of tax money roes to schools. I, on the other hand, went to a poor high school. We had one AP class offered, no real high tech classes, and the community was so apathetic to the school that every year the levy had to be voted on twice to get it to pass. If it hadn't, we would have had to pay $200+ just to play a sport or participate in activities, which, in my opinion, would have probably led to there not being sports because not enough students would have been able to pay for it.  Not only that, but the whole attitude of the school and the majority of the teachers was, "We don't expect you to go to college, so we'll try to teach you something you can use when you graduate." In that vein, we were offered auto mechanic classes, forestry classes, and classes at a local vocational school. Additionally, 90 out of 290 students of my graduating class did not graduate. This is what you get when you live in a poor community with not much money from taxes.

    On the other hand, if we had vouchers, elementary and secondary schools would have the same competitiveness as our universities. Since the voucher system is based on income, it wouldn't prejudice those with less money, but would actually give them a leg up. These vouchers would be between $500 and $3000. This school year, taxpayers will pay over $7500 per student (information from ( Assuming the average voucher would be for $2000, that would mean an average of $5500 less money would be spent per student who used a voucher, and at least $4500 less.

    The result would be less crowding in schools, less students per teacher, and, according to Utah State University, $1 billion more for public schools over the next 13 years. For a good article about this from a BYU professor, see
  2. Parents would have more control over where they send their kids. What if your child was interested in the arts. There could be a private school devoted to art education in addition to general education. They would get teachers that were more specialized in teaching art and they would complete the school knowing more about their interest. What if your child was interested in dancing, sports, math, bilingual education, etc.? There could be schools that cater to these specialties. Just as you go to colleges and universities whose programs are the best in the country in your specific field, these schools could specialize in these various specialties as well. Of course, all would teach the basics of math, social studies, English, science, and so on, but they would have these other special interests that would be geared towards their students' interests.

    Not only that, but if you didn't like how they ran the school, or how your teacher treated your child, you could threaten to take your child out and the tax money with him/her. If they still didn't want to help, you could enroll your child in a different school. Can you do that now? Most parents feel powerless if their child is not getting the education they deserve. Now there is hope.
  3. What public school systems are the best in the country? The majority of them are in areas with rich residents. In these areas, a larger amount of tax money is apportioned for schools. With the more money, the schools have better programs, facilities, teachers, activities, etc. Basically, the rich are getting better educated because of their money. With vouchers, students who would not have the opportunity to go to a better school, or who not have a choice of schools to go to, would now have the ability to go to a school that they would like better.
  4. Teachers would have to sharpen their skills and become better teachers to stay teaching. Have you ever had teachers that were just horrid? My sister's third grade teacher dumped her notebook in front of her class for the purpose of humiliation. And you know what? She was there 4 years later to do the exact same thing to my brother his third grade year. How did she stay employed after teaching like that? Because that is how theschool system works. Teachers aren't fired, they're "transferred" to another school where they can continue to be horrid teachers.

    If schools had to be competitive, schools couldn't afford to have a teacher that no students want. They would have to get rid of that teacher. I'm not saying all the teachers would be wonderful, and I had my share of bad teachers even while in college, but it would raise the level of teachers overall. Plus, the teachers would get paid more, so they would have more incentive to get better as teachers, and more good teachers would stay in Utah rather than moving to other areas where they get more pay.
  5. Look at the results of private schools. Why would a parent pay for a child to go to a private school when they're already paying for public schools through taxes if they didn't think that the education received there was better? The results of private schools speak for themselves.
  6. If you can't afford a private school even with the voucher, you still have the choice of sending your child to public school at no cost (although a lot of schools' tuition falls under the amount of the voucher in Utah, depending on the amount you receive).

But don't just trust my opinion, there is evidence out there including this study done at Harvard, which can be found at

Other links can be found here:

Another place to go for a balanced opinion pro and con can be found here: 

Go to to listen to a debate about the issue between Richard Eyre, pro, and Carol Spackman Moss, con.

Those opposed to this are the public school system and teachers because it threatens their monopoly. To this point they had complete control over the education of children and how it all works, and they don't want to lose that control. But at what expense?

Whether you agree with me or not, please take the time to get educated on the issue and vote on November 6, 2007 on whether Utah should adopt a school voucher system or not.

Also, if you do agree with my viewpoints here, please spread the word. Either write your own blog or link to this one so that more people in Utah can get educated about the issue. I'm not sure how many people even know it's up for vote, let alone understand the issue. So use the power of the Internet to get the word out.

If you need to register to vote, you can mail in a registration form found at up to 30 days befor election day or present it at the County Clerk's office up to 15 days before election. 

And don't forget to vote!!

Thursday, August 23, 2007

Oh, Happy Day

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Monday, August 13, 2007

Day at Lagoon!

So on Saturday, my company had a summer party at Lagoon amusement park. It's my first time going, mostly because it's an hour away and it costs something like $36 to get in. But with my company paying and providing a free lunch, I figured I'd take advantage and see if the park is worth going to on another occasion. I came up with this conclusion: it would be pretty fun if you went on an off day, like a Monday or Wednesday or something. I could be wrong and it'd still pretty crowded on those days, but I bet it's only half as full. I also realized a Utah phenomenon: if you're not LDS, you can take great advantage by going on Sunday. I met someone in one of the lines that said the last time she came was on Sunday and there were hardly any lines. You wouldn't find that anywhere else. Elsewhere Sunday would be just as crowded, although I wonder with having two days rather than one if it would be more spread out, so not as crowded on Saturday. 

Anyway, Aaron and I got there around 11:30 a.m. We tried to find a ride to go on before lunch and decided to ride the Bat. Let me tell you, it was not worth standing in line for a half hour for this. It was quite lame. After lunch we went to the Pioneer Village and walked around. It was pretty cool—basically a museum of pioneer with real pioneer structures and such. They had toys, carriages, furniture, guns, coins, and so on from the pioneers who settled Utah originally.

We were hoping the lines would go down, too. But even around 5 p.m., it didn't seem to be any shorter. We went on a couple of the smaller rides, including the swings, which I liked as a kid and mom was always worried I'd fall out of every time I rode it. This ride was nice because with almost 50 people being able to go on it at once, you never had to wait long in line. By then we were really hot and tired and disappointed because we hadn't gone on any real rides, especially a good rollercoaster because of the long lines.

We were almost going to go home, but then decided we'd deal with the long line to go on the new rollercoaster, Wicked. Boy are we glad we did. Although the line was really long, it went really fast--only about 40 minutes. And boy was it worth it! This ride is awesome. You start out inside a tunnel; you go around a corner and it shoots you forward at 55 miles an hour. Then you go straight up perpendicular to the ground and then up and over and straight down. I couldn't even open my eyes at this point—I was too scared. Then you're twisting and turning doing some more ups and downs extremely fast. And then it's over. It was a true rollercoaster and thoroughly enjoyable. One thing I liked was that it wasn't jerky like other ones I've been on. Some when you go around a corner, you jerk from side to side and it's uncomfortable; but this one is very smooth. The designers did a great job.

After that we headed home, only stopping along the hour-long ride to get dinner. We stopped at Wal-mart near our house to get a couple things and we could barely walk. I was completely exhausted by the time I fell into bed and slept for like 10 hours—still feeling like I needed more. Of course, I also woke up Sunday sick, so that could've been partly why I slept so much. I had to get someone to sub for me in Primary—I didn't want to get my kids sick, too. I think my husband was grateful for that because he was so sore, he could barely walk. I expected to be sore too, but so far I haven't been. Guess I'm in better shape than I thought! Today I'm feeling much better; luckily it was just a small cold: sneezing and running nose (though I did go through like 50 kleenexes yesterday). 

So overall it was fun and worth going. But definitely if I ever go again, it will be during the week (and maybe in September. My kids would have to miss one day of school, but it'd be worth it to go when it's less crowded). I also found out they have a little waterslide park within Lagoon, which I didn't realize, so next time I'll bring a swim suit and towel so we can do that as well as the rides.

Thursday, August 2, 2007

Life in General Is Good

Whenever I speak to family on the phone, they always want to know what is going on in my life. My sister has three kids with one on the way, so she always has things happening (whether stories about her kids, how her pregnancy is going, news about her husband, etc.). My other sister is in the middle of selling her home in Florida and moving to California, so there is a lot to tell about what's going on there. My brother lives in Beijing, so right there he has stuff to talk about (the Chinese culture, plus he's starting a jewelry business). 

I, on the other hand, usually can't think of much to tell. I have my primary class so I sometimes have cute stories to tell about them, but pretty much other than that, I'm just working. My husband been out of school for the summer working on some projects, so there is not much to tell there either. Basically, I'm saying my life is boring. But don't get me wrong; in a lot of ways, I'm glad my life is boring. I'd rather have that than tragedy or whatnot. Still, it's why I haven't blogged much—there's not much to tell.

When I finished reading Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, I asked Aaron if he wanted to know what happened. He said not to tell him and I was like, "You're bound to hear what happens before the movie comes out since it will be at least two years" (if not longer). He hasn't read any book besides book 1, which we read together. I hoped that would get him interested. He's liked the movies fine, but he doesn't much read for fun because it takes so much effort for him. But he was like, "Well, then I'll read books 6 and 7." I was somewhat surprised. Then I was like, "Well if you want to read together, I wouldn't mind reading with you. Then I can explain when you get to parts that weren't in the movie." Having only seen the movies, which have to leave a lot out, I figured he could use it.

So every night for the last few nights, we've been reading the sixth book together. I just read it a few weeks ago, so I admit it's not totally fun for me, but I love it when he learns something new or when we get to a funny part that makes him laugh (and me too). I have also found I get a lot more from the books than I have before because, since we're reading out loud, I can't gloss over paragraphs or sentences like I do when I read. Like last night, I caught something cool that I hadn't before. Harry, Ron, and Hermione are in Potions class and Slughorn has a cauldron of Love Potion. Hermione explains that the smell is different to everyone depending on what attracts them. One of the things Harry smelled was a flowery smell that he thought he smelled at the Burrow. Then later when Ginny comes by at a meal to talk to the three of them, Harry smelled that same flowery smell. Ha! He totally likes Ginny (but wouldn't even admit it to himself at this point). I hadn't caught that on my previous readings.

Anyway, it's been really fun and a great activity we can do together, esp. since it's been so hot outside making it hard to do anything together outside. It's better than watching TV or a movie, too, because it's more interactive. 

We also had a nice afternoon together yesterday. They've been doing road construction outside our apartment for awhile now, off and on (for like three weeks), and after Aaron having to hear it all day, he was ready to get away when I got home from work, since they wouldn't be done for at least another hour. So we went to Baskin Robbins, where we had gift certificates that his mom had given us. We each got some ice cream, enjoyed the cool shop, then went over to the Orem Library just a couple blocks away from Baskin Robbins to get some books. I was able to get a whole pile of books that I've heard are good. 

It was just a nice relaxing afternoon spent together.

So maybe all that was boring, but that is what's going on in my life. A week from Saturday my work is having a summer party at the only real amusement park in Utah (that I know of), Lagoon. I'm looking forward to that. I can't remember when I was on a roller coaster last (and we don't have to pay the $36/person just to get in, which is the price for anyone 4 years old and up). So that's something exciting to look forward to. Yay.

Saturday, July 21, 2007

Just Finished HP7

Don't read the cut if you don't want spoilers!!! And no, I did not read all night. I slept for 5 hours. I did!

Wow . . . Wow. I don't think that the series could have ended any better. It was great. The big war at Hogwarts was perfect. Neville getting Gryffindor's sword and killing Nagini was awesome (he really blossomed in this book. Ron really did too--stepped up and gained confidence in himself). I have to say I was really worried when Harry "died", but wasn't it great how he pretended to be dead for awhile and then came back? Awesome. And how it all worked out for Harry to be the true owner of the wand. And the redemption of Snape. And of course it was so great to see him in the future.

I was a little surprised. I saw a Daniel Radcliffe say in an interview that JK Rowling would never let Harry have a happy ending because he would be too affected by everything he'd gone through, but she did just that, didn't she? I kind of agreed with Daniel when I heard that, and really was expecting Harry to be a tortured soul, but I guess he redeemed himself of it all by defeating Voldemort. Yes, people died, but it was not in vain. He was able to protect them all by be willing to die, and then defeat him and his followers. Maybe that, and no longer having a piece of Voldemort's soul, helped him to heal.

It really was such a fantastic ending. There were just some wonderful parts to it. I have to say though, now seeing it from the parents' perspective, it was a pretty sad scene when Harry and Ginny saw their children off, knowing they would not see them much over the school year. It was good for Harry to have a place to go, but it must be sad for the parents to be away from their kids so much.

The character development overall, in this book and in the series, was just fantastic though. I wish Snape hadn't been so mean to Harry all that time, but it was cool how it all played out. I think this series will seriously be a classic like Lord of the Rings and the like.

Monday, July 2, 2007

Clean House, Cute Kid

Aaron's been doing a good job at keeping the house clean. Yay!

Yesterday at Primary, when I showed up one of the girls in my class handed me the picture below that she drew. It is so cute I had to share. I asked her if it was for me and she said yes. I pointed to the girl and asked, "Is that me?" and she said yes. So cute that she would draw me a picture. Maybe that's why she thought she could get away with running around during class *palm forehead*. Oh well. She's still cute and do you really blame kids for being antsy after 2.5 hours of church.

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Dance! Dance! and "CSR"

Okay, so I love the TV show "So You Think You Can Dance" or sytycd for short (as if you couldn't tell by the fact that I friended both Benji and Lacey Schwimmer on my MySpace. Benji only had a few thousand friends when I found his page, now he has over 27,000!).

Anyway, so whenever I watch the show, I itch to dance too. I'm not great, but I took some dance classes while at BYU (jazz, modern, ballet, ballroom, etc.) and just LOVED it. At my gym they offer a dance class on Tuesday and Thursday nights. I hadn't previously gone because I like exercising in the afternoon, not at 8:30 at night, but after watching the new season of sytycd for the past few weeks, I was itching too much not to.

So last night I went over there. I knew it would be a popular class, so I arrived 10 minutes early. There were already about 6 people there. By the time class started, the room was full (about 40 people). The teacher immediately went into the warmups and I was pretty proud of myself for keeping up. A lot of the warmup was similar to things I did in my jazz classes to warmup, so it wasn't too bad (even though it's been 6 years since I took a class).

Then we went on to learn a routine. It didn't seem like anyone knew it, so I am guessing she does a different one each class, but I won't know for sure till the next class. It's basically a hiphop class, but it's called Dirty Dancing, so a lot of the moves are supposed to be sexy. Our teacher says we have to either look sexy or cool at all times. I'm not sure if I pulled it off, but I tried.

Overall, it was a lot of fun and great exercise. I will have to remember to bring water next time. I was starting to feel faint towards the end. I haven't been doing a lot of cardio lately, mostly just pilates, which is great for building muscle, but doesn'treally work the heart. I think dancing is the perfect exercise for me. The semester before I got married, I was dancing 14 hours a week and had lost 10 pounds (which I quickly gained back because I went from that to not exercising at all). I didn't really even notice that it was exercise because I was enjoying it so much, so it's great to be doing it again. I will definitely go again!

On to the next subject, "CSR". Unfortunately, this is not as exciting as CSI and the C doesn't stand for Crime. No, it stands for Customer Service Representative. After we were acquired, we went into a hiring freeze. Well, two days before it was official, one of our CSRs quit with two days' notice (talk about rude!). So we've been down one CSR since (for over 2 months). Well, then this week, one of the CSRs left for vacation, leaving us one CSR to route all the calls that come into our department. Obviously, that is very tough, so to relieve him, my manager, who is also over the CSRs, asked me and another co-worker to help by filling in for the week a few hours a day. I, of course, agreed despite wanting to say no because I couldn't really say no to my boss, plus I felt bad for the CSR being so overwhelmed.

Well, in the morning, it was my co-worker's turn to help. We had decided to split the 5 hours of coverage in half, so she would take 2.5 hours, and I would take 2.5 hours. Well, she was having issues getting started yesterday, and didn't start actually taking calls till about an hour before she was to finish. Exactly at the end time, she was off the phone. I'm like, "You were only on for about an hour."

She said, "Well, I was in training before that."

"Well, I trained for like 5 hours last week." (She was on vacation which is why she didn't.)


So basically I had to work an hour and a half more than her (two and a half including the extra hour I volunteered). I guess I should expect this. She shows up between a half hour and hour late every day and yet always leaves on time, even if she takes an hour and half lunch break. Since her schedule is from 8 a.m. to 4 p.m. that means there are days where she only works 5.5 hours, and on average only works about 30 to 35 hours a week. What's even more annoying is she's been going around to everyone acting like a martyr basically saying, "Oh, wo is me. I have to be a CSR this week. Oh, but I'll get through, even if just barely. Aren't I so wonderful for helping out." As if. She's only done it for an hour so far! Obviously, she doesn't say those exact words, but you get the idea.

So after she was done, I went on for my shift. For the first few calls, the CSR listened in to make sure I did everything correctly (at my request). Then I started to feel confident enough that I told him I was ready to go alone. The whole afternoon went surprisingly well and even when I could technically stop helping, I continued to help for another hour till it was time for me to go home. There was one call where the guy had lost the CDs to a product we put out years ago, and I was able to help him figure out a way to get the product downloaded. He was SO grateful, which made me feel so good. I am hoping it continues to go well all week.

So that's my life, as a CSR.

Friday, June 15, 2007

Alcatraz Versus the Evil Librarians

Update: Brandon posted the first two chapters to this book on his Web site here. Check it out.

A friend of mine is publishing a series of YA fantasy through Scholastic. The first one comes out this year. Since I have connections, I got to read the book already (as well as giving feedback on the second one). I have to say, I really enjoyed it. Although it's for YA readers, this series will be enjoyed by readers of all ages. It's a really fun book full of humor, suspense, creativity, an awesome and original magic system, and . . . well . . . Evil Librarians. Where can you go wrong?

Here is a mockup of what the cover is likely to look like.

It's scheduled to be released October 1, 2007. If you want to keep updated on what Brandon is up to, check out his Web site

Monday, June 4, 2007

Pirates of the Carribean: At World's End

So I saw this movie on Saturday. My company rented out like four theaters inside a movie complex. It was fun to see a movie in a regular theater (stadium seating) rather than the dollar movie theater. We only do so about once a year. We were almost late because I turned off the freeway in the wrong direction. We were walking in as they were showing the previews.

Overall, I really liked this movie. I don't understand why some people didn't like it. It was a fun creative story that somewhat tied up the storyline (esp. with the scene after the credits). Some feel that the storyline is covoluted and hard to follow, but I really didn't have much trouble at all knowing what was going on. And I felt it made sense inside the Pirates universe. Meh.

Although some people are speculating that there is a way for Will to leave the ship alive (I really don't know how. If you know, please explain). Also, the fountain of youth thing points to a fourth. If that's the case, then why is it they filmed the second and third together, but haven't started on a fourth? Maybe they want to see how At World's End does first. And if they can get the actors to do another.  Hmmm . . .

Overall, I think it's a movie worth seeing in the theaters. I didn't realize how long it was. I think after the previews, the movie started around 9:15 a.m. and ended at noon. But it didn't feel too long—I had no idea how late it was.

And, well, Orlando Bloom as Will Turner is just hot. So what can I say. I really don't understand those who think Jack Sparrow is hot. How can you think a guy is hot who acts drunk and crazy all the time (although I admit, Johnny Depp is hot and him in the Jack-Sparrow getup is pretty hot. The character isn't, though. If that makes sense). I was watching the first Pirates movie last night during commercials, and it's interesting how Will and Elizabeth have changed since that first movie, where Will was so against the idea of his father being a pirate, and now he's a pirate. Jack's prophecy of, "You're of pirate's blood and you'll have to deal with that one day" certainly came true (and that's a paraphrase. I can't remember exactly what he said). 

I've heard some say that you should just forget that the second movie exists and just skip right from the first to the third (understanding the couple of key points from the second movie). I don't know. It's been so long since I've seen the second to remember why I did or didn't like it. 

Well, anyway. Yay, Pirates of the Carribean.

Update: Primary Class

So I've officially been teaching my Primary class for 4 weeks. I think I'm getting into a groove now. It's interesting: out of the 4 weeks, we've only had 2 kids come more than once (they both have come 3 out of the 4 weeks). We've had 6 other kids only come one time each in those 4 weeks, so if they all came, we'd have 8 kids in class, but the most we've had at once is 4 and last week (Memorial Day weekend), we only had 1! 

So yesterday we tried something new. One of the kids in class (we'll call him Wiggly Coyote), the only boy , incidentally, cannot sit still! I can't decide if he's ADHD or just really active. One of the girls says he's not like this at home; I assume that's because he doesn't have to sit relatively still at home. So Husband talked to his mom (because his step-brother is ADHD) and she suggested using Play-doh. 

So yesterday we offered the Play-doh to each of the kids. We told them that they had to follow the rules for the Play-doh or we'd take it away (i.e. still participate and pay attention, only play with in your hands, don't mix yours with your neighbor's, etc.). It went really well. It was mostly for Wiggly Coyote, but we didn't feel it fair to only give him the Play-doh. But Coyote was actually answering questions and getting something out the lesson. He also did not bother his neighbors very much (where last time, he was constantly distracting them by poking them and talking to them and such). Overall, I think the kids got about the same out of the lesson, yet had more fun. Hopefully this will encourage those who don't come often, to come more.


Friday, May 25, 2007

Don't Give Up, You Are Loved

This song from Josh Groban is really awesome. Don't give up because you are loved!!!!

Monday, May 14, 2007

Pictures, Wedding, Dinosaurs, and Primary

So this last week was quite busy.

On Wednesday, Aaron and I had our anniversary pictures. I know what you're saying, "But your anniversary was in March!" Well, you're right. We held off on the pictures till after Aaron's semester was over. I think overall it went well. I'm not very happy with my hair cut, but I made the best and I think mostly it looked okay. There were some pictures where the angle or something made my bangs look funky. We went to JCPenney and I found out that they have gone digital. The plus side: We got to have lots of pictures taken rather than the 12 limit they had when they used film. The down side: They got rid of most of their backgrounds so we only had one background (don't ask me why. What does that have to do with digital) and they no longer have stools and such to sit on, so all the pictures were either standing up or sitting on the floor. Weird. Also, they no longer have a sheet that has a 5x7 with wallets, only two 5x7s. I really wish they would have the option of one or the other. Having two 5x7s on a page would be nice if you want multiple for parents and such, but isn't so much when you just need one, and wallets would be nice to give out to family. Whatever.

But the photographer was really fun and we did some fun poses. She didn't always follow exactly what I wanted her to do (and, of course, I didn't know till afterward when we looked at the proofs), but overall I think she did a great job and I think the pictures turned out well. They'll be put up online soon, and when they are I'll send out an email letting people know how to view them.

On Friday, my cousin Josh was married to Katie. Very exciting. You could tell when they looked at each other that they are very much in love, and I'm so glad that Josh found someone wonderful to marry. The reception was quite an experience. I've never been to one that had real plates and waiters and such. The food was all right, but a little fancy for my taste. The desserts were interesting—they came on plates about an inch square. I needed three of them to feel like I actually was eating anything.

I got to see my grandma, which I was glad of. She's real sweet and an awesome grandma, I think. I'm glad she was able to come from Oregon for the wedding.

One thing that I really liked at the reception was that they had a photo booth where you could take your picture (the old fashioned kind with four black and white pictures on a stip). You were suppose to take your picture then paste into a memory book for Josh and Katie. It replaced the registry book. You could also take extra for yourself to take. I was so excited about this, and then forgot the pictures there. I could kick myself.

On Saturday, I went to my aunt's to see my grandma and spend time with her before she left (and my aunt and uncle as well). They were headed out to the dinosaur museum up at Thanksgiving Point, so I tagged along. It was pretty interesting. They had a lot of dinosaur skeletons, including two T-Rexes and two Supersauruses. I have to say, I thought the T-Rexes were bigger, from what they looked like on Jurassic Park, but they were probably onl 15 feet tall (and not the 25–30 that I was thinking). I'm glad I got a chance to there and see it.

Then Sunday I had my first time teaching my Primary class. I was called to teach the CTR 6 class last week. We only had three kids in the class, so it wasn't so bad, but they were pretty wiggly. One of the girls in the class impressed me. I'm not sure if she is 5 or 6 years old, but she can already read most words (not just the basic cat, ball, Jane, etc.) and she knew a lot of answers to the questions. It was pretty fun to be in Primary rather than Sunday School and Relief Society. I just stress about giving lessons to kids because I don't really know how to make it interesting and not bore them out of their minds (although, I know that participation and activities help). I think I'll like it better than when I was the Primary Chorister. At least as a teacher I have a lesson manual. Plus I only have to worry about a few kids rather than 20–30.

Friday, April 20, 2007

About Me

This is a survey my sister wanted me to do on my sister-blog on MySpace. I thought I would post it here too:
And since I do try to be a good sport . . .


Here's the rules: Once you have been tagged, you have to write a blog with 10 weird random things, facts, or habits about yourself. At the end, you choose 5 people to be tagged, list their names, and why you chose them. Don't forget to leave a comment that says "you're tagged" on their profile and tell them to read your latest blog. ENJOY!!!

So, weird and random, huh? This might be hard.

1. My favorite fairy tale character is Beauty, and I love the many reiterations of the story (my favorite being Beauty by Robin McKinley). So I have a dream to one day have a rose garden as close to Beauty's as possible.

2. When I'm happy, I like to squeal and clap my hands. I think if someone saw this who didn't know me, they might wonder if I'm "special."

3. I think I might be ever so slightly dyslexic, especially with numbers. I frequently mix up numbers either switching or replacing (like earlier when I was trying to call a 442 prefix and instead called a 422 prefix, and had to look at it twice before realizing it was wrong).

4. I know someone who has been an actor on The Bold and the Beautiful, General Hospital, One Life to Live, and All My Children. Can you guess who?

5. I'm extremely stingy. I don't understand how people can have thousands of dollars in credit card debt, and still continue to spend money. That would stress me out so much! So instead, I'm conservative with my money. Right now we have a student loan for Aaron's schooling, but it's government subsidized, so we don't owe interest till after Aaron's done. That's the only debt we have. Even when we were living on $600/month, we still avoided debt. I got a student loan my last semester at BYU ($2500) and it was paid off within 8 months of graduating. We rarely buy "luxuries" or go out to eat. I'm just glad Aaron is with me on this.

6. I'm all about sleep. I always have been. I was sleeping through the night at two weeks old. Of course, my mom LOVED that (especially with 4 other kids to deal with). She said that I would wake up at 6 a.m. to be fed, and go back to sleep for three hours while she got the other kids ready for the day. It was PERFECT. My freshman year of college, there was this required GE class that most students took as freshman called American Heritage (talked about the founding of the US and how the government works). We had a pretty tough professor and there were about 800 in the class. The night before the final, a lot of girls on my floor stayed up all night to study for it. I, on the other hand, took time to study during the day and then slept my normal 8 hours. After the test the next morning, one girl commented that she didn't even remember what the questions were or how she answered and that she fell asleep during the middle of it. I can't imagine she did well (or at least not her best). I got an A-. I just really believe that sleep is important to you functioning and doing well each day.  (I'm not trying to brag, just saying that sleep really helped me in concentrating on what the questions were asking, especially since some were kind of "tricky.")

7. I'm quite a messy person, I admit. I've two or three bosses actually ask me to clean up my desk because it wasn't very presentable. And my apartment is a perpetual mess. Now, this isn't to say my apartment is dirty or gross. There's a difference. I do clean the dishes, I do mop the floor, I do vacuum, I do clean the bathroom. It's just messy again by the next day. And, most importantly, I really make an effort to have a clean and orderly house when I have guests over, so they aren't uncomfortable by my messiness.

8. I have recently starting having a crush on British TV star Paul Blackthorne (who's been on ER, 24, and Monk). I mean just his name is AWESOME. Why can't I have a cool last name like Blackthorne (and it's not cool unless you're born with the name, which I assume he was). He's currently starring in The Dresden Files, a fun show on the Scifi channel about a private investigator who just happens to be a wizard (my favorite genre--fantasy). He's hunky and tall and . . .*swoon*. Well, here, judge for yourself:

Additionally, the character of Bob, played by Terrance Mann, is absolutely delightful and they play off each other very well. And if you're worried, yes my husband knows about my recent obsession with Paul—he's not worried one bit. *Swoon* (They haven't announced if the show will renew for another season, so check it out. The more fans the better, and I think I'll die if it doesn't come back for a second season. Also, just realize that the show has some rocky moments, but really comes into its own around episode 9 or so. Then it absolutely rocks!)

9. I can touch my nose with my tongue.

10. I'm so boring, I can't think of a tenth one, but my sister wants me to post this, so oh well. Maybe I'll think of one later.

Monday, April 9, 2007

New Job, Sort of

So today has been an interesting day. My company has been bought out by Symantec (it was announced in January, but became official last Friday). Today we had a 3-hour orientation that frankly left me quite confused. There was a lot of information to go over and a lot of Web sites reviewed that I can't remember (although now that I'm back at my desk and able to go through them, I'm starting to get where everything is).

In some ways, I'm really excited about this opportunity. With a bigger company comes the ability to do more. I'm also excited to see how professional their style guide is and I'm pleased that most of their decisions are in line with Altiris' Style Guide (which I helped to create).

In terms of benefits, there are ups and downs, but I think there are more ups. The insurance is like 4 times as much, but we had just about the cheapest insurance ever, so it's still not that bad, and they cover SO much. Plus, because of the transition, we're basically getting 2 months of free insurance (we're already on Symantec's payroll, yet we're still covered by the insurance through Altiris till the end of the month. So our pay isn't being deducted for the insurance. And we have till the end of May to sign up for insurance through Symantec, even though we'll be covered on May 1, no matter when we sign up (retroactively). Even so, they said they wouldn't deduct our wages retroactively, thus giving ustwo months of free health insurance). Additionally, even though the insurance is more, they'll be reimbursing us quarterly for the difference between the old insurance and the new insurance until the end of the year (since when we signed up last December, it was supposedly for a whole year), so we won't really be paying the higher premiums till next year. I still think they're rather reasonable (between $216 and $288 a month for a family, only $27/month for an employee only).

They also have cool benefits, like if you join a gym, they'll reimburse you up to $69/quarter for the costs (I haven't found out yet if they'll reimburse me, even though I prepaid for a two-year membership, but if they do, that'd be so cool). I also found out that they have paid maternity leave. I'm not sure how long I would get, if I were to have a baby while working here, but it's nice to know it would be paid (I was worrying that I'd have to use whatever vacation I had accrued and then go back to work).

One of the things I'm really disappointed about is I believe they said Timponogas hospital is not covered, which is the closest and nicest hospital in the area.

So, an interesting day overall.

Tuesday, March 27, 2007

I've Been Married 5 Years!

So as of last Thursday, Aaron and I have been married for 5 years! I almost can't believe it—it's gone by so fast. I still remember when we were engaged and I thought our wedding day would never come, and now we've been married for 5 years.

Well, I've been stressing about what we should do to celebrate. I wanted it to be really special because it's such a milestone. Even though I've been trying to think of something for a couple months, when it came down to it, I came up with NOTHING! On the day of, we didn't do anything because we wanted to wait till Saturday. On Saturday, I went to the grocery store in the morning and picked up a bed tray, some whipped cream, and canned blueberry pie filling. Then I went home and made Belgian waffles, bringing them on the tray to Aaron who was still in bed. He LOVES blueberry Belgian waffles. We pretty much just hung out all day, mostly in bed. Finally we did some productive things (if you call playing video games organizing my spice rack productive).

By 6 p.m. I decided I wanted to at least go out to dinner. I let Aaron pick and he chose Outback (which is the same place we went to last year for our anniversary). It was a good choice. Aaron go the mahi mahi and I got pork chops with grilled veges (their grilled veges are to die for. They're like marinated or something. Mmmm!). The pork chops were extremely tender and cooked just perfectly. Since it was a special occasion, I got a strawberry pina colada—so good! And to top it off, our waitress was awesome and very attentive.

So maybe we didn't do anything really special, but at least dinner was fantastic.

So do you want to know what else I considered? Well, one thing I thought of was going on a hot air balloon ride. How cool would that be? It's something I've wanted to do since living in Washington as a kid and seeing the hot air balloons sail over Puget Sound. Well, I looked it up and everywhere I tried was like $200 per person for about an hour ride. Worth it if you can afford it, but sorry if we don't have $400 lying around.

I thought about going to Park City or Salt Lake City and staying at a hotel, but that would be quite a bit, too. This one hotel, Anniversary Inn, has themed rooms where you sleep in a bed shaped like a carriage or a gandola or in a forest. It looked way cool, but was all booked when I looked (and I'm not sure Aaron would have wanted to spend that much, but Costco has a deal where you pay $115 for $230 gift certficate there, so half price). Maybe I'll remember that for a future anniversary.

I thought of just doing something fun like laser tag or miniature golf, but I was worried there'd be a lot of loud kids there, which would make it a little less fun.

I also tried to think of something creative we could do, like I could decorate the apartment with a Hawaiian theme, or starry night them, or rose garden theme, but I couldnt' think of anything really definite. I think I would need more time to plan something like that. Again, maybe something to do in the future.

Oh, well. All in all it was still a good anniversary and the important thing is that we're still excited to be married to each other.

Thursday, March 15, 2007

Are You out There, Readers?

Okay, this might sound weird, but I'd really like to know who, if anyone, reads this blog. Supposedly some of my family does, but I wonder. (And if they do, how often?) So I would like it if when you read this, you leave a comment. It doesn't have to be much--just a "Yes, I read this" or a short comment about the post. Otherwise, what's the point in me doing this? I keep a personal journal, so it's not like this is my way of journaling. And since anonymous comments are allowed (that is, you don't have to sign up for an account to leave comments), you really have no excuse (although I do ask you to put your name or some identifier in the comment, so I know who is leaving a comment). 

Also, it'd be nice if this continued to happen on an ongoing basis, so that if you stop reading, I'll know by lack of comments. I just want to know if it's worth it for me to do this or if I should just quit! 


Monday, March 12, 2007

Newspaper Article about Author Friend

Brandon Sanderson, the friend I mentioned who is a published author, had an article written about him in the daily paper. I thought I would link to it and copy the contents:,1249,660202512,00.html

Wee-hour musings paying off for author

By Rosalie Westenskow
Deseret Morning News
      PROVO — For five years, Brandon Sanderson spent the quiet midnight hours weaving tales of fantastical worlds filled with magic, intrigue and secrecy.
Brandon Sanderson recently received a six-figure advance for a children's fantasy series about a boy named Alcatraz. (Stuart Johnson, Deseret Morning News)
Stuart Johnson, Deseret Morning News
Brandon Sanderson recently received a six-figure advance for a children's fantasy series about a boy named Alcatraz.
      A graveyard shift at Provo's Best Western CottonTree Inn yielded a total of nine books for the budding writer, a student at the time, who pounded out page after page until 5 a.m. each morning while working at the hotel desk.
      Two published novels and 12 book deals later, the 31-year-old author can afford to devote daylight hours to his work — although his wife, Emily, tells stories of late-night writing binges.
      Sanderson recently received a six-figure advance from Scholastic, the "Harry Potter"-series publisher, for a children's fantasy series about a boy named Alcatraz who does battle with a cult of evil librarians.
      These recent writing successes, though, resulted from years of hard work — a fact Sanderson likes to point out to students in his class, Writing Science Fiction and Fantasy, at Brigham Young University.
      "A lot of people say my 'debut' novel doesn't feel like a first novel," Sanderson said. "Well, that's because it's not. It's my sixth novel."
      The day Sanderson received an offer for "Elantris" from an editor at Tor Books, a publisher of science fiction and fantasy, made all the late hours worth it, he said.
      "I just about fainted when I got this news," Sanderson said. "Finally somebody bought one."
      "Elantris," which hit bookshelves in May 2005, was one of 13 "practice" novels he wrote while attending undergraduate and graduate school at BYU.
      "A lot of people give up after writing a book and not selling it," Sanderson said. "My opinion is, just keep at it."
      And keep at it he has. Sanderson currently has 80,000 copies of his books in print. The first of a trilogy called "Mistborn" appeared in bookstores in July 2006, and the second is slated for publication on Aug. 21.
      The first of the Alcatraz series, "Alcatraz Versus the Evil Librarians," will come out Oct. 1 and other books are planned for May 2008 and early 2009.
      Unique plots characterize much of Sanderson's writing, said his literary agent, Joshua Bilmes.
      "It was clear looking at his work that Brandon had more ideas in one book than a lot of fantasy writers have in their entire career," said Bilmes, of JABberwocky Literary Agency. "This was just stunning to me because it was so beyond what other writers I was reading were capable of doing."
      Both of Sanderson's published novels include maps to help readers orient themselves in the kingdoms he has created, and "Mistborn" even has its own alphabet, designed by Isaac Stewart, who also drew each of the maps.
      Stewart, a close friend of Sanderson's and a prolific fantasy reader, said he likes Sanderson's fresh take on the genre.
      "My favorite thing about them is that they haven't been done before," he said. "Brandon's books aren't the derivative Tolkien."
      The complex magical systems and mysterious characters of "Elantris" and "Mistborn" seem worlds away from Sanderson's neat townhome in south Provo, his casual jeans or innocuous hairstyle.
      But fantasy appears to take up a large chunk of Sanderson's mind, and random thoughts often lead to the next project, he said. The entire "Alcatraz" series, for example, resulted from a line that just popped into his mind one day.
      "And that line was: 'So there I was, tied to an altar made from outdated encyclopedias about to be sacrificed to the dark powers by a cult of evil librarians,"' Sanderson said.
     After a mere 16 days of writing, that line turned into a 50,000-word novel — that's about 300 pages.
"Allomantic Table of Elements" is one of many illustrations by Isaac Stewart in Sanderson's books. (Stuart Johnson, Deseret Morning News)
Stuart Johnson, Deseret Morning News
"Allomantic Table of Elements" is one of many illustrations by Isaac Stewart in Sanderson's books.
      The series, Sanderson's first attempt at children's fiction, tells the story of a boy who discovers he's part of a secret group of freedom fighters who battle librarians, an evil cult that controls the world by restricting information. Each of the freedom fighters has an unusual but surprisingly powerful magical skill, such as the ability to arrive late to appointments.
      By focusing on less-obvious talents, Sanderson said he hopes young readers will realize their hidden abilities.
      "I think everybody has talents that don't immediately come out ... and sometimes those can be more important," he said. "One of my talents was daydreaming, and I've turned that into a career."

Monday, March 5, 2007

Taught Primary Class

So on Friday I was asked if I could teach a CTR 8 class. The teachers are having health problems. So I prepared for a few hours on Saturday and Sunday morning. When Aaron and I finally figured out where to go to teach, I found out that we onlyhad one student. I had No idea when class was suppose to end, so I had no way to gage how much time I had to waste, or whether I needed to hurry. So the lesson ended 30 minutes before the end!

I guess when you have one student, who is very quiet, you don't get much discusson. The last time we taught, we had the 4-year-olds and there were like 10 of them. Right at the beginning of class, they all wanted to go to the bathroom and get drinks. I think we spent half of class just doing that, especially since only one of us could go with a couple of the kids while the other stayed with the rest of the class. So we only got through half the lesson that day. I think we also had less time (like 40 minutes, rather than 55), and so when i prepared the lesson, I wasn't worried about not having enough to do.

So after we finished the lesson, we talked about the Friend magazine, which I had brought and went through a couple things in there, a story and an activity. Then Javiera, the one student, suggested playing a game of hangman. Then finally it was time to go into sharing Time and Singing Time. What a relief! I'm just glad this happened with an 8-year-old, and not 4-year-olds.

Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Cool Dream

Last night I had an AWESOME dream! I've always thought that telekinesis would be the coolest thing ever to be able to do. Well, in my dream last night, I could do that. I can't remember the circumstances exactly. It was like I was at a school, possibly for people with "powers," and I think I realized there that I could move things with my mind. So I started moving everything with my mind, so I could practice and get better at it. When I first started, I could move stuff, but it was hard to control where the item went. But over time I was getting better. I remember at the end that I took a glass with juice and was moving the liquid from one glass to another glass. I was having a hard time keeping the stream steady. Rather, I would get a little going and then the stream would end and I would have to start over. There was a guy there who was a teacher or mentor or something. He wasn't surprised by what I could do and was giving me advice on how to do better (if I had to guess, I would say he looked a bit like Ian McKellen). But it was a great dream. I would love to be able to move things with my mind. That would be so cool!

Dentist Appointment

So yesterday I went to the dentist. It was the first time in 2.5 years! I would have gone sooner, but when you have no insurance, $120 is quite a bit for a teeth cleaning (I know, I should have done it anyway). I'd gone when I was at BYU because you get discounts from certain dentists so it's only $53, rather than $120. But now that my insurance provides cleanings every 6 months at no cost, I really had no excuse.

Of course finding a dentist isn't the funnest because you never know if you'll be stuck with one who says you need work done that you don't need, or who isn't very nice. So I searched online for reviews and found a few—one in particular that sounded nice and the review said he doesn't do unnecessary work.

So I made an appointment a few weeks ago for Aaron and I. I was pretty worried about Aaron because he hasn't been to the dentist since before we were married (so over 5 years).

So we went in. Immediately I liked the dentist. He was really nice and made small talk with me (which was hard to respond once he started looking in my mouth). I was really surprised when I found out he was the one that was going to clean my teeth. He had an assistant who I had assumed was a dental hygienist who would do it. I've never had a dentist clean my teeth before. I figured they were just there to check for cavities and to do the hard stuff: fillings, etc. He mentioned that they have a hygienist come on Mondays and Wednesdays only. Hmm, funny.

After the cleaning was done, he showed me the x-rays they had taken at the beginning. When he said he wanted to go over the x-rays with me, I thought it was because something was wrong. But instead he just showed me what the x-rays showed, and how they look for cavities. He said that I was lucky and had strong teeth (not the first time I've heard that) and so didn't have any cavities. Then he gave me a toothbrush and floss and Aaron went in for his cleaning.

Aaron got a clean bill of teeth too, which was awesome. The dentist also fixed a small problem with Aaron's permanent retainer, which had been bothering Aaron for some time now. I thought that was really nice since he didn't charge for it.

So overall it was a great visit. Yay!

Monday, February 19, 2007

Happy President's Day

Well, Happy President's Day, everyone. I especially enjoyed the day off from work. This last week I was sick with a cold. I usually get over illnesses quickly, but this one lingered and though I started feeling sick Wednesday, I still haven't quite gotten over it. What's weird is I had a sore throat last Wednesday that was gone by Friday, yet I still have had a runny nose, aches, and fatigue. Whatever.

I still went to work on Thursday and Friday, but left on Friday at 2 because I was so tired I couldn't concentrate.

Friday night I went to take some nitetime cold medicine and found out we don't have any (or at least none that I could find). I thought for sure we did. So at 10:30 p.m. I was headed to the store to buy some. I wanted to ask Aaron to go, but he had gone earlier in the day to get other things and had asked me if there was anything I needed to help me feel better (trying to be the loving husband he is), so I didn't feel I could ask him to go again. So that was fun. I was frustrated when I got there, though, because all cold medicines no longer have Sudafed in them. They've changed their formulas because medicine with Sudafed has to be sold behind the Pharmacy counter. Not that it would have helped if they did have Sudafed since the Pharmacy isn't open at 10:30 p.m., but it'd still be nice if some kept their formula the same. Sudafed just works the best for me. But I figured as long as the medicine helped me sleep, I'd be happy.

I grabbed some orange juice for Aaron (which he had forgotten to get when he went earlier) and then went to check out. Aaron called my cell to ask if I could get him orange juice, if it wasn't too much trouble (he knew I wasn't feeling well). I informed him that I had already put it in my cart. He was like, "Oh, you're the best honey ever." (My hubby can be so cute.)

So that was my weekend—being sick. It wasn't enough to keep me from getting stuff accomplished—I still went fixed the tail light in the car, sent out a package, and went to church on Sunday—but I really just wanted to lay in bed. I even slept 12 hours each night.

Yesterday for my day off, I cleaned. I know, not very relaxing, but after not doing any house work for 5 days, I was way behind and at the end of the day, I felt very good to get that stuff done. I washed, dried, and folded 5 loads of laundry; cleaned the bathroom; mopped the kitchen floor; gathered up items to take to Deseret Industries and put them in the car; and generally picked up around the apartment. By 5 p.m. I felt very good about just relaxing.

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

Happy Valentine's Day

Happy Valentine's Day everyone. I'm so thankful for the people who I love and who love me. I hear complaints about Valentine's Day. It's too commercial. Why do we need a day to celebrate love--we should do that every day.

This is my answer to you: It's your choice whether you make it commercial. You don't have to celebrate love by buying cards, stuffed animals, or chocolates. For my husband, I gave him a love letter and then made him dinner. And although we don't need a special day to celebrate love, I don't think it hurts. Just like we don't need a special day to celebrate Christ's birth, we can do that all year, but it's good to have a day as a reminder anyway.

So this year I wanted to do a good job at showing my love for Aaron. I feel surprises are fun, so I figured that I would act like I wasn't going to do much (just a love note), but while he was in class, I cleaned up the downstairs and made dinner with cupcakes for dessert. The plan was to clean the whole apartment, which would be part of his gift, but I didn't have enough time. So I cleaned up downstairs, made a pasta pizza with garlic bread and salad. I took fabric rose petals and made a path from the door to the kitchen. I picked Aaron up after he took a test, and made him close his eyes before coming inside. Then I lit some candles, turned off the lights, and had him open his eyes. He was very grateful for the dinner, especially since he didn't expect anything. After dinner we had fun icing the cupcakes and putting Valentine's sprinkles on them. Overall it was a good night.

For me, he got me roses. They are very beautiful (one day I want a rose garden).

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Tuesday, January 9, 2007

Not for the Squeamish

So, if anyone read the post yesterday, they probably thought it was pretty gross. But hey, it's my blog and I can post what I want, and it's your choice whether you read it.

I say this because I'm about to mention blood. Ewwwww!

Well, on Friday after we left the dentist's office, I noticed that I'd gotten blood on my shirt. Gross! And not only that, but it was a new shirt. Even though I wasn't feeling my best, when we got home I took it off and put some SA8 Prewash Liquid Spot Treatment (which is made specifically to get out enzymes such as milk, eggs, ketchup, chocolate, syrup, grass, and blood!). I didn't get to washing it, though, till yesterday. And what do you know, no stain whatsoever! Not even a little bit. I was so impressed and excited that my new shirt was not ruined. Yay!

Monday, January 8, 2007

My Wisdom Teeth Are Gone

So this last Friday I got my wisdom teeth out. This should have been done a few years ago, but there was no way I could afford the cost of it then (it was over $1000, but with insurance only cost me $200).

So on Friday Aaron took me over to Wisdom Teeth Only in Provo. I highly recommend them. I had a very good experience (granted I wasn't awake most of the time!). They took me into the operating room and sat down in the dentist chair. The oral surgeon came in and talked to me a little about what to expect and so forth. Then someone came in and put in an IV with medications to help me sleep. This is the first time I've been "put under" with anesthesia, so I was pretty nervous. I thought it would be one of those masks that they put over your mouth and nose, but I was glad it wasn't. I wasn't too happy about the needle (the last time I got a shot it was a tetanis shot that made my arm ache for days), but it was a small prick and that was all. He found my vein easily, so no biggee. I immediately started to get drowsy and I remember them talking around me, putting something in my mouth. At one point I heard them chatting to each other about their families, etc., but I'm not sure when that was. Then they were telling me to swing my legs over to the side of the chair and they walked me to the room next door, set me on another reclining dentist chair, and put a blanket over me. Aaron came in and I tried to say his name, but it didn't come out well. I knew I should open my eyes, but I was pretty content just lying there.

Finally I opened them. I heard a nurse say something about me waking up. She came in and talked to us about what I should do while recovering. She said I probably wouldn't remember what she was saying, but I was pretty alert by then (partly because I wanted to know what she was saying). They got a wheelchair and rolled me out to the car. We had to go to Costco to get the medications (pain killer and antibiotics). I felt really gross and was bleeding quite a bit. Aaron walked me to the door of the bathroom and I went in and changed the gauze, which was already soaked in blood. Then we waited for the medication. I noticed on the instructions it said to drink a clear liquid like apple juice or gingerale before taking the pain meds, so I sent Aaron to find some apple juice. Of course, the smallest amount they had were 2 one-gallon jugs.

We got the meds, paid for the apple juice, and went home. Aaron got me to the couch and then got my pillow and a blanket. I drank some apple juice and took the pain meds, forgetting about the antibiotics. By now it was around 11 a.m. (so the surgery itself only took about an hour including all the befores and afters). Then around 2 p.m. I remembered I hadn't taken the antibiotics. So I got the bottle and swallowed one. Well, that turned out to be a bad idea, except to be a learning experience and to add one more medication to the "Do Not Take under ANY Circumstances" list, because within an hour I was puking it back up (along with the apple juice and a meal-replacement shake I had drunk). Unfortunately, I must not have gotten it all because this reoccurred once an hour for four more hours. Finally at the end I was pretty sure it was out because I tasted something very sour and gross-tasting that I had not before. I was right because after that it stopped.

After the first time we called the dentist office and told them about it. They said to just stop taking it. I guess it was only a precaution in case of infection (so I didn't even need to take it). They wanted me to continue on the pain pills to rule out whether they had really caused the nausea (I was pretty sure it wasn't since it was 4 hours after I took the pain pills that I had nausea).

It was sort of fun just lying on the couch (and since I had novacation left, it was my "personal holiday" from work. We get one a year). I watched TV and found out how boring day-time TV is. I was wishing for a puzzle book, but didn't think to ask Aaron to go get one. I spent the day with an icepack on my face, switching back and forth between one cheek and the other.

The next day I started on the pain pills again. I had no problem with nausea, so my suspicion was confirmed. I found, though, that 4 ibprofen (800 mg) worked just as well if not better than the prescription, so I switched. In the instructions from the dentist, it said I could take either 600-800 mg of ibuprofen or the pain pills, but ibuprofen works well for me, and it has less chances of causing nausea. I mostly took it again on Saturday just to confirm whether it had caused the problems on Friday.

I started eating soft foods on Saturday and yesterday, Sunday, I was eating back to normal. I think overall the recovering is coming along quite well. My gums get sore when I eat and I woke up this morning at 5 a.m. with pain (which a few ibuprofen stopped and I went back to sleep).

I was nervous to have my teeth come out, and I'm so glad it's over!

Wednesday, January 3, 2007

Merry Christmas (really late!)

Well, I hope everyone had a great Christmas. I went home for Christmas and was without Internet for the majority of the time. I definitely felt withdrawals (mostly whenever I thought of searching for information online or checking email. How can people live without the Internet!).

So anyway, here are the highlights of my trip.

For fun my mother-in-law invited me and my mom to make our own jewelry. She had gotten into it recently and had all the supplies: beads, fishing line (to make the jewelry on), a beading board (this is a must-have. It allows you to lay out how you want the beads so you know you like it before you put it on the wire), bead glue, and crimping pliers. We had a lot of fun making necklaces and bracelets. I think by the end of the trip I’d made around 10 necklaces. Some for me and some for others (Susan wanted to make some for co-workers and friends. I was having fun, so I made some for her. I also made a necklace for my mom). We decided to have it be a tradition when I come to visit.

On the 22nd we had a family gathering at my Mom’s house. My step-siblings were there (except for one). We each had one other person/couple to buy for. Aaron and I had Amanda and her husband, Bryant (who was a no-show for unknown reasons). We got them a nice microfiber blanket and two nice pillows. In turn, Jennis and her husband, Justin, got a basket with goodies including a Phase 10 game, deck of cards, electronic 20 questions, soda, popcorn, and more. Justin was not there; he was out fixing electrical poles that had gone down in a recent wind storm, which was very similar to a hurricane and had caused over a million people to lose power. I felt sorry for him; I guess he’d been working pretty much 18 hours a day, and sometimes more. I got my mom some slippers and lotion from Bath and Body Works and some chocolates for Roy (Mom doesn’t eat chocolate, so he doesn’t get it much).

All in all, it was a good evening. Mom prepared a nice dinner and I got to meet two nieces and a nephew that I’d never met. (Pictures soon, hopefully.)

My nieces Kayla and Natalie came with their dad to visit while we were home. They spent a lot of their time away with other relatives. On Christmas Eve, we opened presents while they were away. They wouldn’t get to open their presents till they got home a week later and although they would other presents from relatives, Susan didn’t want them to feel real left out.

Susan gave me a photo box, keepsake box, wallet, a necklace (made with the beads), and a butterfly pin. Aunt Tammy gave me a bead bracelet that she’d made (which was very cute). And Aaron got me a heart pendant with diamonds (picture to come). It was quite a nice Christmas and I was proud of Aaron for getting me something without prompting (even if I did give him a list of possible gift ideas). I was even more proud when he thought of a creative way to give it to me. He wrapped (rather badly, but cutely) a box and inside put a card saying the gift wasn’t there, but to look in the desk of our bedroom. Then there was another card leading me to under the dining table, which led me to the couch and then to the master bedroom where my gift was sitting on the bed. Plus on each card he had written a compliment (like about how smart or pretty I was). It was creative, very cute, and very sweet.

The day after Christmas I made a killing at the After Christmas sales. I got these tall black boots at JC Penney that were regularly $130 for $30. They’re really gorgeous! Also some sweaters at Old Navy for $15 each (as well as some knee-length shorts for $12). I also got a pair of Tink pajamas at the Disney Store for only $15, which I love! So I had a good day.

On the Thursday after Christmas, Aaron and I went down to Vancouver to attend the wedding of his cousin Jason, which was on Friday. When we got there we realized we had a flat tire (my first one).

On Friday, my brother-in-law came and changed the tire to the spare (which is a full-sized tire). This enabled us to be able to drive down to the ceremony in Portland. We decided to go to the sealing only and then head down to my grandmother’s in Salem rather than go back to Vancouver for the reception and then down to Salem. Before heading to Salem, though, we went to Les Schwab, where the tire was purchased, and got a replacement tire. Lucky for us, the tire had a road hazard warranty on it, so it was replaced for free! Yay! We got some Subway for dinner and then headed to Salem.

The visit with my grandmother was very nice!! I think she’s the best grandma, and I have fun seeing her. She was so accommodating while we were there, and she has a very nice house with a great guest room. So we visited with her on Friday night and then on Saturday morning we went out for breakfast, which was fun. We left soon after we got home since we had a 3-hour drive to my mom’s.

On Sunday we packed up, went to church, and then went straight from there to the airport. Boy were we happy to get home! It was a great trip, but I am always ready to once again be in my own bed.