(Two of them have to do with recent incidents in fitting rooms, and one doesn't.)
FIRST: This one I mentioned on Twitter, but not everyone is in the loop of my Twitter (though I can't imagine why) and it's worth repeating. I was trying on clothes at the Forever 21 in Provo two weeks ago, and was only allowed 6 items in the dressing room. The attendant hung the rest on the other side of my door and said I could switch out for new items as I went along. Well a few minutes later I went out for a pair of capris, but they had vanished. Cause for concern, considering they were the only ones in the entire store. When I asked the fitting room girl if she knew where they went, she told me that another girl had asked to try them on and she GAVE THEM TO HER. I managed to keep the snark 60% contained when I told her to retrieve them. And then! The other customer had a bad attitude toward ME over the whole thing!!! She kept asking loudly and irritatedly when she could have them back. Finally I told them both I was buying them, marched them out of the fitting room, and hung them back on the rack.
SECOND: I happened to be in Salt Lake this year for my aunt Mariann's 10th annual magic show neighborhood block party. It was surprisingly entertaining, made HILARIOUS by the whispered running commentary between my friend Christa and me. Anyway, the best part of the entire show was when the magician called up an adorable four year old boy to help out with a trick. It proved a tad too difficult for little Cody to follow right from the very start when he was asked to put his hands on his hips. Cody raised his hands hesitantly, fingers spread, thinking intensely, before placing them uncertainly on his shoulders.
THIRD: Jon was taking his sweet time in the fitting room at TJ Maxx today, and the attendant was putting her limited small talk skills to use on me. First she demanded, "What time is it??" so unexpectedly that I flinched. Then she asked if I was going anywhere for "summer break" and I explained our upcoming trip to my husband's hometown in Canada. She wondered if Canada has a king and a queen, to which I replied that they have a Prime Minister, but they do put the queen of England on their money. Then I hid in the shoe section until Jon emerged from the fitting rooms, confused as to why the attendant had expressed an interest in his upcoming visit to London and commended him for his lack of a British accent.
Summary: When I was in Utah last week I went rafting on the Provo River, and later there was a rainbow, and then yesterday Jon and I went shooting, and then I tried a new hairstyle and IT WORKED.
We "successfully negotiated" that bridge in the background, but another group wasn't so lucky. When we got there, a raft was wrapped around one of the pillars under the current and there were five sopping wet teens standing in the cold wind, shivering uncontrollably while their rafting guides fretted about the boat. Steve (Annie's husband, a certified river guide) was so mad. And the moral of the story is always raft the Provo River with Midway Adventure Company - no one else. Also, we gave the girls our dry sweaters to wear while we ate lunch and when mine was returned it smelled really weird. That's the last time I save a life!!!!
Photo by Steve, edit by me
I forgot my tape!!! For my eye!! I can't wink my left eye so when I go shooting I always bring Scotch tape to do the job. The photo above is when I got the following brilliant idea:
Oh! Saddest thing EVER! I MURDERED A BIRD!! When I took a turn with Jon's 2-ton 12 gauge (that I can barely hold let alone aim and shoot), I hit the clay target and an innocent passer-by with one incomprehensible shot. I felt horrible.
From the side. Here's where I got the wherewithal. It's meant for weddings I suppose, but I thought it could be pretty for church, too. This was only my SECOND attempt - not perfect, but I was still amazed at how fast and easy it was. Looking at the directions I thought there was no way it would turn out how it said it would.
The back. A couple of loose ends, but whatever. SECOND TRY.
Thoughts? Too fancy? Too Downton Abbey-ey? Naysayers are welcomed but will probably not stop this train. I've been searching for months for something different to do with my hair and this could be it.
When I left for Utah last week, I certainly had no idea that Jon would be taking the most important exam of his entire life in my absence. A very long story short, he had planned to take his test around the 28th of June, but because some lazy lump decided not to post an envelope, his options for test dates were very limited. So when a day finally opened in Helena for Wednesday, as in yesterday, he pounced on it even though it was a week earlier than he'd planned on taking the exam. We won't know how he did for six weeks, and in the meantime he's doing his best to relax and block out all thoughts of herpes, tumors with teeth, and which pathogens cause 'ricewater stool'.
Though he couldn't resist sharing with me one of the most horrifying questions. I can just imagine his eyes bugging out of his head when he first read it there in the testing center. Something about an elderly woman who couldn't poo unless she placed two fingers in her hoo-ha. In the retelling, Jon screamed, "What the hell kind of question is THAT??? We weren't taught that!!! Geez!!!!!!"
The theme of my summer has been 'self-improvement', or at least I will say that for blogging purposes.
First, piano. My mom is an accomplished musician and has taught piano lessons for as long as I can remember. I never took advantage of her skills (something to do with not handling criticism well and being easily frustrated) so I taught myself instead, which is not recommended. I ended up like one of those kids who never quite learned how to read in elementary school. The ones who slipped through the cracks by fooling everyone into thinking they knew how. While I was playing upper-intermediate music, I had no idea what I was doing. My finger placement was all wrong, because I never paid any attention to where my fingers were actually supposed to go in order to play more efficiently. And I am a great memorizer and player-by-ear. These things combined were my downfall, because I couldn't play a piece unless I'd heard it before (sight reading was nearly out of the question), and once I'd played a piece a couple of times, I knew it by memory and therefore never became as familiar with the actual notes on the scale like I should have. I hit a wall. I couldn't advance. So in addition to scanning our family's archives, re-learning how to play the piano is my priority this summer. This time, my mom is teaching me.
Crafting. Okay, not really, that was misleading. But I AM doing A craft. I can't show you until it's all finished, but just know that I am very excited about it. When I bought my materials at Joann's fabric, the cashier girl asked me if I wanted to set up a rewards account. I told her that this is the only craft I'll ever do in my life. I am just not that sort of person. Pictures soon.
My skin. I am a mutant. I never had acne until a couple of years ago. Something finally had to be done. When I went in for my eye thing, I asked the PA to please, for the love of all that is good and holy, help me. He gave me a prescription-sized sample of some acne thing, incorrect verbal instructions for use, and sent me on my way. After three weeks with absolutely no results, I poked around online and realized his mistake. I then created a skin-care plan in my iPhone (lots of water, lots of moisturizer, etc etc). Now, a couple of weeks later, I'd love to say my skin is beautiful, but it's not. It didn't help that Jon made me discontinue use of my prescription when he saw the chemical burns it had caused around my jawline. Wtf, Epiduo. Wtf.
Driving. I hate driving, and I never drive by myself, but I wanted to spend a few days at Annie's before flying to Tucson out of Salt Lake so I decided it would build character to do the 5-hour drive (versus riding the shuttle). That was only the second time in my entire life I've ever driven that far on my own. It was not fun.
Hair. I never do ANYTHING with my hair other than wear it down and straightened. I've wanted to recreate this hairstyle and this hairstyle ever since I first laid eyes on them, but I am not talented enough to do it on my own hair (do not let that second one fool you. It is NOT a five minute hairstyle you can easily do to yourself). So I experimented on Annie, of course.
They turned out great (well, the one more than the other), but it only made me sad that I can't wear my own hair like that. At least not until I buy that hair slave I've been saving up for.
Riding a mountain bike. It was my first time, and so much fun despite my resulting poor aching bum. My brother-in-law Steve even lent me his own personal padded bike panties, and still. Pain. But it was a beautiful ride through the Provo canyon and I loved almost every second of it.
Bridal Veil Falls (is there a waterfall in North America NOT called Bridal Veil Falls?)
As you can see from the pictures, I've also lately been improving upon my time ever spent wearing neon. Which is to say, I've never previously worn neon, and now apparently I do. I bought that shirt off the clearance rack at Old Navy specifically with this bike ride in mind, but I have to fight the urge to wear it daily.
Taking photos in the auto mode of my point and shoot camera. What a skill! Annie and Steve wanted a few pictures on campus in honor of his BYU graduation, and I happily obliged.
We specifically chose this BYU sign because the slogan at the bottom, "Enter to learn, go forth to serve" was much better than the slogan on the OTHER sign, "The world is our campus". ("More like 'The campus is our world'" --Annie.)
My best friend Christa was there, too, which of course resulted in Annie and Steve being able to improve upon THEIR photo-taking-with-a-point-and-shoot-camera skills.
I love Tucson, and I am not ashamed. Call it whatever you want - America's b-hole, where dreams go to die, whatever. Doesn't hurt my feelings. It's a great city, so long as you stick to the good parts. As soon as I knew that I was for sure going to be meeting Jon there, I was little-kid-excited. Since we only had a day and a half to spend, I planned out each hour weeks in advance. Spoiler alert - it all revolved around food.
First stop: Frost Gelato.
This is the best gelato on earth. No, I have not eaten at every gelato place on earth, but I don't have to. This is the best. Just look at it.
My usual - half coconut, half strawberry yogurt.
I was really happy to be there, okay??
Next stop, BK's for Sonoran hotdogs. I've discussed these before on my blog to a credulous audience. Believe me when I say they will change your life. (I had never even heard of them before moving to Tucson, but I've not surprisingly seen them cropping up all over the place since. They could be a new food trend. Keep your eyes peeled, and your heart open.)
I meant to take a picture when the food first arrived, but then I was too busy gorging myself. It was hard to pause even for this shot partway through.
More miscellaneous Tucson pictures:
Reunited! Jon was sooo tired from his review course, poor guy. And why yes, that IS a covered wagon behind us. This was taken after dinner at Pinnacle Peak, a tacky restaurant in this Wild West town replica built as a movie set. We go for the filet mignon. Best steak ever.
Slap bracelet! Instant flashback to roller rinks circa 1990.
I thought this was awesome (though, admittedly, not awesome enough to actually purchase).
Dr. Seuss-ish plant (taken at the fancy mall, where we may or may not have stopped on our way out of town for another helping of gelato).
That's one big apple fritter. This was another necessary stop - Wheel Donuts. Best donuts on earth, in Tucson, AZ. Who would have ever thought?? At my old job as an office assistant at an engineering firm, my decision of which company to use for our blueprinting was directly correlated to who most frequently brought me these donuts. You scratch my back, I'll scratch yours. Speaking of! Mixed in here somewhere was a visit to my old office and lunch with (most of) my favorite coworkers. I love love loved that office and still sometimes have dreams that we moved to Tucson and I miraculously got my old job back. Nerd! Anyway, it was so much fun to see everyone. Even the ones I didn't miss.
Over too soon :( Some pictures from our long drive back:
Last thing. Our final gas stop (in Tremonton, Utah, not like you asked), I noticed something stuck to Jon's back:
A giant fly. And the best part is, it wasn't dead, or even hurt. Its wings were just stuck. I brushed it off and it flew away.