Thursday, December 13, 2012

Ding Dong Merrily On High!


[In case you haven’t been hearing about the Mormon Women Wearing Pants to Church Day hullabaloo, here’s a link that summarizes the entire thing perfectly. There are a ton of other discussions out there on the topic, but start with that one first.]


  • First and foremost, I wish women had a greater presence in the Church. There’s a whole host of ways women could increase in visibility with absolutely no doctrinal changes whatsoever - see some good suggestions here. (It’s interesting to note that one of the proposed changes on that list came to pass last General Conference when the mission age for women was reduced from 21 to 19.) Again, these are policy and cultural changes only.

  • There is nothing doctrinal even remotely suggesting that women can only adequately worship in a skirt or dress. It’s purely the result of culture.

  • A Mormon chapel is the only place on earth where a denim jumper is considered more appropriate than a pantsuit. Personally, I own at least three pairs of pants that are dressier than half of my skirts.

  • There’s a woman in my ward who wears nice slacks each week. I honestly don’t know the reason, but I suspect it’s related to her health. Social taboo means that week after week, she will be the ONLY one dressed differently. I bet she’d appreciate it if one week she showed up and she wasn’t the only one dressed in slacks.

  • I sit in front of 16-year-old teens during the second hour and I constantly fidget with my skirt, wondering if I’m flashing a little bit of white.

  • It’s freaking COLD in the chapel.

  • What year is this, again?


  • People might see it as a personal offense, or worse, an attack against the Church, and I can’t explain my above reasons to every single person in the ward. (Then again, can’t they “choose” not to be offended by it, just like all the times I’ve chosen not to be offended by political statements snuck into testimonies, racist and homophobic comments made in Relief Society, and parents who do not clean up their kids’ nasty Cheerio messes?)

  • I don’t want people to read anything more into my intentions than what I’ve outlined above.

  • I can’t think of a single way to frame the inevitable discussion with my Sunday School students in a manner that wouldn’t result in phone calls from parents.

  • I see the significance in pants, specifically, as a feminist symbol, but I really don’t think that wearing pants to church is an effective way to change attitudes, especially now that the issue has become so divisive. (You should read some of the vitriol from the opposition. All hell has broken loose over this.)

All that being said, wearing purple, a color associated with the feminist movement, has been suggested as an alternative to the controversial pants-wearing. I’ll probably do that instead, as a subtler and less schismatic display of solidarity.

That's all.

Friday, December 07, 2012

Potato Tacos

I know, I know, sounds weird, get over it. My friend and I were discussing our ultimate comfort foods and she threw out "potato tacos." My face looked like yours, until she described them.

We've had them twice this week.

You will need:

Mashed potatoes (we use yellow; they make the best mash.)
Corn tortillas
Chopped cabbage
Lime wedges
Hot sauce (optional)

Toothpicks for pinning tacos flat
Oil for frying

Heat oil over medium or a little less. You don't need much, maybe a half-inch? Microwave tortillas for 30 seconds or so - otherwise they'll tear when you fold them. Spoon on some potato mixture (not too much or else you'll be sad that you can't fit as much cabbage in later).

Fold over and pin with toothpick. 

Fry for a minute or so on each side, until goldeny. BE CAREFUL AND KEEP FLOUR A FIRE EXTINGUISHER A WELL-FITTING LID NEARBY. Hot oil is terrifying.

Remove toothpick, fill with cabbage, squeeze a shload of lime juice on there, add a few drops of hot sauce, and NOM!!!

Wednesday, December 05, 2012

The Good Old Days, Episode IV

See also:
Episode I
Episode II
Episode III
Episode V


Our birth stories. Jake, the first, was NINE POUNDS and took his sweet time – 20 hours of hard labor for my poor, tiny mom. My parents insist that right after Corinne was born she stopped crying, lifted her head, and took a good long look around the room. Annie wasn't breathing, and since she was born in a German hospital my terrified parents couldn’t discern what the doctors and nurses were yelling about. And I came squirting out unexpectedly. As the story goes, the doctor leapt across the room and caught me by an ankle before I hit the ground. That story comes from a father who is prone to great exaggeration, so believe half of it (maybe less).

How Annie and I used to catch garter snakes and store them out in the garage in an old toaster oven.

That time Annie accidentally decapitated one of the toaster snakes. She was trying to make it slither by stooping over, gripping the head, and dragging in a snakey motion as she walked. Then she stepped on its tail. The end.

MOHAMMAD. We were both five and our dads worked together. Mohammad’s mom was learning English, so my mom helped out by watching their demon son while she attended class. He was the most toxic, feral, hellborn child I have ever encountered in my life. He antagonized me relentlessly; mimicking, undermining, pulling hair. He tortured the kitten that his parents gave him. One night, when his family had us over for dinner, I was playing with one of his older sister’s Popples and in a jealous fit Mohammad tore it out of my grip. I tried to hold on, but when he’d finally wrested it from me all that was left in my hands was a dismembered Popple ear. No one had noticed, so I stashed it in my pocket and when all the rest of the kids thundered off to dinner, I hung back, glanced left, glanced right, then stuffed the ear back into the hole and scampered away.

That time Jake lost a salamander in the house. A week later it scared the life out of my mom when it came crawling out from under the piano, completely covered in dust bunnies.

How I thought that football players in a huddle were praying.

How we used to gauge our ages by where we’d lived at the time (I still do, and I’m sure my siblings do too. Instead of saying, “When I was 10,” I say, “In Virginia….”). Anyway, we were once teasing 6 year old Annie about something silly she’d done a year before and she replied defensively, “That was in Kansas!” [translation: “It’s been forever, let it go already!”] but immediately continued on in dawning realization, “This IS Kansas!”

That time I was glinting my new watch off the face of a long-suffering fellow Pizza Hut customer. I didn’t realize what it was like on his end, blinding light in his eyes and all. After what must have been several minutes of me staring intensely at the guy and wriggling my wrist in an attempt to individually circle all of his facial features, my brother Jake noticed what was going on and grabbed my arm to stop me.

That time there was a volcanic eruption. My dad called my mom in a panic from work, telling her that Mt. Spurr 80 miles west of Anchorage had erupted and that the entire city would be covered in ash within hours. Our garage was full of boxes, so we frantically worked to rearrange it all so that the vehicles could fit inside (I used “we” loosely there). Over the next couple of days the entire city became blanketed in a half-inch of ash that lingered for months. My sisters and I would play “school” in the street by drawing out assignments in the silt with our index fingers – NERDS! (Here’s a link to more information about the eruption.)

That time I got blown across the schoolyard in Alaska. People never believe this story but I promise it’s true. My parka caught a gust and became a sail. I had to duck and roll to avoid the rapidly approaching fence. I was scared to go outside for a year.

That time A) I was 14, B) my parents were out of the country, C) Corinne was away for the night with friends, and D) a hospital an hour away called to say that Annie was there and to please have an adult call for more details. I had an emotional breakdown on the spot. Corinne didn’t have a cell and hadn’t left me a number where I could reach her. My parents were in the bowels of the Costa Rican rainforest. After a few minutes of reverse dry heaving I had the sudden inspired thought to check CallWave, an online messaging service from back when teenagers being on the internet tied up phone lines and caused dads to be very angry. My parents paid like 5 bucks a month and people could leave a message instead of just getting a busy signal. It just so happened that CallWave started us on a free trial upgrade to caller ID that exact same day, and that Corinne had called from her friend’s cell as they drove away from the house, and that I had happened to be online when she called, so I had a number where I could reach my sister. Turns out Annie’s horse had taken a tumble and she’d hit her (helmeted) head on a rock. The concussion wasn’t severe, but enough that Corinne and I had to take turns waking her up every hour during the night to make sure she wasn’t… I don’t know, dead? Unconscious? My favorite part of this story comes from Annie’s friend’s version of the events. After the fall, Annie insisted that she was okay, but just to be safe she led her horse back to the trailer instead of riding. She was acting strange, though, and her friend knew something was definitely wrong when Annie stopped her horse to pull some half-buried, broken, garbage sunglasses out of the sandy path. “Are these yours?” Annie asked. “They’re not mine…are they yours?” Lucia replied apprehensively. Annie looked distraught as she struggled to remember, then defeatedly replied, “I don’t know.”

How my mom is the most caring, patient mom on earth except in the following five situations: when nail clippers are borrowed and not returned to their rightful place, when in close proximity to a Gum Chewer, when dress-ups are left on the floor, when her face is being touched, when asked how long to microwave a food item.

Saturday, December 01, 2012

'Tis the Season!

My house is Chrismassed! Or should I say, one corner of my house. I'm not big on holiday decorations. They take up too much space the rest of the year.

Oh wait, what's that? There, at the top of the bookshelf?

MORE FREE CHRISTMAS PRINTABLES, from my computer to yours. Happy December!

Semi-related, this happened OH YES I DID:

Sunday, November 25, 2012

Holiday Weekend

  • Thanksgiving! We celebrated with my aunt and uncle and my cousin (and his family) at his in-law's house in Scottsdale, along with about twenty other people, half of which we'd never met before. We sat with a Navajo man and his family, and he told us this awesome story about his conversion to the gospel that involved a summer away from the reservation working on a potato farm in Driggs, Idaho, being introduced to the LDS church, then returning home and going on a 4-day spiritual quest in the mountains to find out for himself if the church was true. Fascinating. (The fact that I was eating dinner with a Native American, and that therefore my Thanksgiving was more legit than yours, was not lost on me in the moment.)

  • It was my birthday yesterday! I don't care what everyone else says, I love birthdays. We slept in, ate pancakes, saw a movie (Lincoln; more on that next), ate lunch at my favorite restaurant, decorated for Christmas, opened presents, and had fondue at home for dinner to celebrate the conclusion of my 27th year. 

Postino (Central). You should go there.

  • Apparently I have worse luck at movie theaters than most people, and Lincoln was no exception. We sat in the far back; a woman in the very front row pulled her phone out about once every fifteen minutes and held it up for the entire theater to see. I was too far away to yell at her, but I did get to join the rest of the audience in yelling at the old man who loudly ANSWERED HIS PHONE during a critical moment in the film. That's not even all - some beefcake teenager in a tank top sat right next to Jon and had a 150 minute long conversation with the movie. Jon asked him to kindly stop shaking his leg partway through, as it was causing THE ENTIRE ROW to bounce. A woman nearby tuberculosis-coughed every thirty seconds, and the guy directly to my left smelled like beef jerky. I say it every time but this time I might be serious - I AM DONE WITH MOVIE THEATERS (and any places with people, in general).

  • At church I spent a few minutes chit-chatting with a girl that I thought maybe I could be friends with. Then I asked her what her son's name is: Diesel. I pointed her out to Jon as we pulled out of the parking lot and he recognized her husband as "that dude that said, 'If you don't vote for Mitt Romney, I don't know how you can consider yourself Mormon' during Elder's Quorum." So much for potential new friends!

  • My angry, itchy red welts have browned and hardened into ugly, itchy scales. So hot right now.

Thursday, November 15, 2012

Text within Context

PENNY GOT INTO THE GARBAGE!!! First time EVER. Little dummy. Jon sent me a text detailing her uncharacteristic, wild binge on used Kleenex and Q-tips and her subsequent shame, and concluded it with, "Clearly we are not feeding her enough mucous or ear wax."

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Stuff I Distinctly Remember Saying During the Operation

"Are you feeding the wires in now?"
"Owwww." [coupla times]
"Last time I had a burn mark near my incision, what was that from?"
"Is it in my heart?"
"And that's abnormal?"
"Am I asking too many questions?"
"Yes!! I really really wanted to but I didn't know if I was allowed." [When Frank invited me to turn my head and watch the screen.]
"Are you going to burn??"
"You're for sure going to burn??"
"Are you feeding the burner in right now?"
"Put me to the moon, Frank." [When the doctor replied yes to my previous question.]
"Owwwww." [couple more times.]
"They burned my heart!!!!!!!!!!!!!" [To Jon, as they wheeled me out of the operating room.]


I'm sure there was a lot more, since I found an entire texted conversation I had with my friend Amber directly after the procedure that I had no recollection of until yesterday afternoon. And since this is the last I plan to write on the topic, my doctor is Dr. Michael Zawaneh at Arizona Arrhythmia Consultants in Scottsdale, and he's the best doctor ever, and he fixed my heart, and I highly recommend him for all of your cardiac ablation and electrophysiology needs.


See also:
Part 1 of ?
Part 2 of ?
Part 3 of ?
Part 4 of ?
Part 5 of FIVE!!!
The last post about my heart (I promise this time)

Monday, November 12, 2012


I still feel great. Yesterday was a little eventful though; we were at my aunt and uncle’s house and as soon as I sat down at the table for lunch after proclaiming how amazing I felt (considering), I started to feel weird. Lightheaded, dizzy, shaky. My cousin’s daughter asked me to pass the salt and I fumbled it. After a few minutes of trying to act normal, I left the table to go lay on the couch and I got all cold and clammy. No nausea, though, just this weird out-of-body feeling. We scrammed out of there not too long after, and as soon as we got home Jon checked my hospital discharge papers which informed us to notify the doctor on-call immediately if I felt any lightheadedness or dizziness. I called, and it was miraculously MY doctor that was on-call, and since he’s the best and most attentive doctor EVERRR he told us to meet him at the ER to personally check me out. As in, he left the clinic and drove across town to meet us at the hospital that was closest to our apartment. Everything was totally fine; he even gave me another ultrasound and tested my blood to be sure, and everything looks great. I had food poisoning last Sunday and between that and my procedure I haven’t had much of an appetite – I’m blaming it all on lack of food. Whatever it was, it wasn’t related to my heart. And the best news is that since I met my out-of-pocket maximum last week, the ER trip was FREEEEEEEEEE. He kept apologizing for calling me to the hospital, and said, “It’s because you’re so young. I can’t take a young person’s health lightly. If you were 95, though, I probably would have told you to just go to sleep.” Oh yeah, and during the ultrasound right after my procedure (I forgot to mention this in my other post), he kept commenting on my healthy young heart and said, “Most of the hearts we see in here are all dilated and floppy.” HAHAHahaHAhHAHahHAhHahHAhhaAAaaaa

Also, my welts are less itchy but more awful-looking than ever:

Also, we had a little 13 year old girl walk/feed Penny on Thursday during the procedure, and she sent me a text afterward that said, “Hi! I got back from feeding and taking Penny out about 5 minutes ago. She did amazing! Hope the surgery went well!” and it was the most adorable thing ever, and now whenever Penny takes a dump Jon announces, “She did amazing!”

Just one more heart post after this and then I'm done.

See also:
Part 1 of ?
Part 2 of ?
Part 3 of ?
Part 4 of ?
Part 5 of FIVE!!!
Stuff I Distinctly Remember Saying During the Operation
The last post about my heart (I promise this time)

Friday, November 09, 2012

Sacking the Tach: Part 5 of FIVE!!!

I'm cured!!! NIGHT AND DAY from last time. They were able to cause a short-lived tach attack almost immediately, and after some trial and error figured out an exact sequence of steps to take to bring one on. Something about “tickling” it in a certain place with their mapping wires, bringing my heart rate to a certain range of beats per minute artificially, elevating it to 360 beats per minute for only a second or two, then my natural arrhythmia would always take over. This was repeated for four hours while they mapped out my heart to find out the exact origins. At one point, my arrhythmia took over for an HOUR and they couldn’t get it to stop (huge change from last time, when they couldn’t start one at all!!) Frank went out and told Jon that if it didn’t stop soon, they would have to electrically cardiovert me (CLEAR!), but they didn’t end up needing to, and the doctor seemed annoyed when Jon told him Frank had even mentioned it. Poor Jon sat out there with eyes like silver dollars after that. Frank's announcement, combined with the fact that someone in another operating room had died and he witnessed the family’s grief, and he had a sort of nerve-racking time out in the waiting room.

The doctor ultimately found three points of origin for my arrhythmia – a larger one in my lower right atrium and two smaller ones in my upper left atrium – none of which were where he had previously anticipated. The three areas communicated to each other in a figure-8-like circuit, and he said the whole operating staff collectively groaned when they realized what they were dealing with; this sort of point of origin tends to move around on them as they burn, going away but then cropping up in a different spot, which is exactly what happened with mine. After chasing and burning the hell out of the larger spot, they were no longer able to bring on an attack and called it a success. Having your heart cauterized internally feels almost exactly like how you’d imagine, PS. Super uncomfortable (like extreme heartburn, go figure) despite the fact that Frank administered a delightful cocktail of Fentanyl and Versed as soon as it became certain they were definitely going to ablate.

My right atrium!

The cluster of red dots at the bottom are where they burned.

I feel GREAT. Even immediately afterward, I couldn’t believe the difference in how I felt compared to last time, and I don’t just mean my spirits (I was sort of devastated when the first surgery failed). My groin was sore, but didn’t throb and give me deadleg like it did last time – apparently last time they had to puncture three times and this time they got it right on the first attempt, so I’m sure that explains that. When the nurse helped me to stand for the first time, I got right up and shuffled around with barely any discomfort. Last time I almost passed out. The doctor was concerned that I’d have lots of heart pain, considering the amount of burning they did, but I haven’t felt anything. Still, he kept me for several more hours for observation and gave me an ultrasound to check on the swelling. My only complaint, really, has been the allergic reaction I had to the defibrillator pads.

I have another welt the same size on my chest. I slept pretty much all day today, but it’s hard to tell if that had more to do with the procedure yesterday or the copious amounts of Benadryl I’ve been taking to keep the itching at bay.

Anyway, c'est fini. Yay modern medicine!!!!

See also:
Part 1 of ?
Part 2 of ?
Part 3 of ?
Part 4 of ?
Stuff I Distinctly Remember Saying During the Operation
The last post about my heart (I promise this time)

Wednesday, November 07, 2012

Why Grammar Is Important

It's the difference between, "I'm so glad you're ok. WOW! Scary! Heavenly Father was watching out for you," and...well...this:


Sunday, November 04, 2012


This just made my day. Apparently these friends searched for the best (worst) authentic Utah baby names then made this video based on their findings. The outfits, the hair that keeps getting bigger and bigger, the shout-out to Rexburg....hilarious perfection. Wish I'd thought of it.

Friday, November 02, 2012

o hai

If you’re keeping track, I should be in the hospital today. But I’m not. It got rescheduled for Thursday, which was the second reschedule, and I’m sure you can imagine how I felt about it all. The first time it was, “OMG I am so sorry, I just realized the equipment isn’t even going to be in the hospital that day!!” and the second time it was, “OMGOMGOMG I am soooooo sorry, I just realized the doctor isn’t even going to be in town that day!!!!” and I was like, o__O

Anyway, so there’s that. Can we talk about Ada’s costume???

(Corinne et al. were spared the worse effects of hurricane Sandy and are in the lit portion of Manhattan. Don’t go swimming in the sewer water, guys.)

In conclusion, I changed my blog for the holidays. I’m not saying for “Christmas” because I’m a stickler about NO CHRISTMAS BEFORE THANKSGIVING, but fair isle isn’t necessarily limited to Christmas, right? It can apply to the entire holiday season? Regardless, I made the header, and I couldn’t wait, so it’s up, and if you’re one of those people who never ventures outside of Google Reader you *probably* are going to want to make an exception for this.


Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Done and done

My dog sweater turned out more like a dog poncho.

I made the over part too wide and the under part not wide enough. Live and learn.

My rows. So neat and tidy if I may say so myself. I won't show a picture of the edges. Let's just say it took me about 45 minutes to realize I was doing it wrong, and another 20 minutes to actually figure out how to do it right. By then I was already well into the project and I just went with it. It is a sweater for an animal, after all.

She loves it though (she doesn't love it.)

Thursday, October 18, 2012


We had Penny shaved a couple of weeks ago when it was still 110 degrees, but the poor thing's fur isn't growing in fast enough as the cooler temperatures approach, and we don't plan on turning on our heat this winter at all. For these reasons, I went down the rabbit hole of dog sweaters on Etsy.

I've been known to crochet an amigurumi and scallop-edge a burp cloth or two, and the more I looked, the more I thought that maybe, maybe (BIG HUGE MAYBE) I could try making one myself. I ran across this pattern which seemed like the most perfect dog sweater on earth and on a whim messaged the shop owner, a darling lady named Toni, just to see if she thought a semi-beginner could make it. She replied that it was probably a bit too ambitious for me. Long story short, this listing was posted to her shop 36 hours later:

WELL I GUESS I'M MAKING A DOG SWEATER!!! lolololololo oh crap wish me luck.

Sunday, October 14, 2012


It was in the 70s yesterday!!! And the day before that was the first time since the end of March that I drove to work without the air conditioning on! I don't think we're completely finished with the upper 90s, but the end is in sight. And while I'll always argue that the miserable Phoenix summers are a perfectly fair price to pay for the glorious winters, I can freely admit that the only thing that got me through were these frequent pool days at my aunt and uncle's house. I tried to refrain from the Penny-swimming-zomg-so-cute photostream taking over my blog completely, but now that it's cooling down I'ma go ahead and dump everything today in one fell swoop.

Jon pointed out that she looks like that terror dog thing in Ghostbusters:

Jon got stung by a bee :( His first time ever, and apparently it hurts REALLY REALLY REALLY BAD NO SERIOUSLY, GUYS, MOST PAINFUL THING EVER.

Also, this:

Happy nightmares! And this:

I consolidated all the best video bits into one minute-and-a-half long montage. IT'S WORTH WATCHING. (If the quality is horrible, try clicking the little gear-looking icon at the bottom and choosing a higher resolution. I can't for the life of me figure out why YouTube doesn't default to the best available quality, but whatever. That'll help a lot. Just kidding, I moved it over to Vimeo.)

Pool Days from Jessie Jensen on Vimeo.

Saturday, October 13, 2012

Fun with Screen Capture: Internet Comments Edition!

Like many people, I sometimes go online. Strangers say the darndest things there. I take pictures of conversations, store them all in a folder on my desktop, and forget they ever existed until months later (today) when I go looking for blog fodder. 


First, comments on photos in Waterton Lakes National Park's really cool Facebook album of wildlife captured with motion-activated remote cameras:  


Second, two comments on the YouTube video of the tro-lo-lo-lo-lo guy:


Last, a conversation about figs. Jon bought a flat at Costco and we had no idea how to go about eating them, so I took to the internets. This website was helpful, and the resulting discussion was sheer delight. There were all of these people, seemingly desperate for information on figs, some asking really stupid questions, and many of them sharing a little too much about themselves along the way. Here are the best ones.

 [SHEESH, Milon, ask your DOCTOR, not the fig lady!!]

Thursday, October 04, 2012

Sacking the Tach: Part 4 of ?

See also:
Part 1 of ?
Part 2 of ?
Part 3 of ?
Part 5 of FIVE!!!
Stuff I Distinctly Remember Saying During the Operation
The last post about my heart (I promise this time)


The last I’d broadcasted about my heart was that my surgery was unsuccessful and that the doctor instructed me to continue wearing that awful monitor for another month, which I did despite the blisters and rashes the sticky patches left all over my body.

I exercised and drank lots of caffeine (doctor’s orders, and it was amazing) and watched scary movies and I did finally catch an event, on the very last day of service. I wouldn’t know for another few weeks whether it was enough for the doctor to work off of, though, because the window for my 30-day follow-up appointment fell during my trip to Idaho, and they couldn’t fit me in until a couple of weeks after I got back. I worried myself sick during those several weeks – while I was wearing the monitor, since I had a such limited window to catch a substantial TACH ATTACK!, and in the weeks afterward, wondering if it was going to be enough to prevent the doctor from putting in an implantable long-term device.

The appointment was full of good news! My doctor was really excited by what he’d caught on the monitor. He asked me jokingly, “Why couldn’t you have done this before the FIRST procedure??” He also found a related, underlying condition on my monitor. Nothing scary, just another annoying tachycardia that’s brought on by exercise. That one can’t ever be fixed because it originates too closely to my natural pacemaker, but the takeaway was that THAT was the reason why my first procedure failed. So it was a relief to have some answers, even though the answer was, “The surgery didn’t work because you have another condition, and this one is incurable.” :\

Anyway, long story (involving billing and insurance and me being scared) short, I’m going in again on Friday, November 2nd. Same hospital, same doctor, but this time he’s better equipped with what he needs for a successful surgery. So.

Saturday, September 22, 2012

Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Texts out of Context: Episode X

Brief explanation and archives here. Also, I always sorta hope people will catch on and do this on their own blogs, or maybe post their good ones in the comments here, but no one ever does :(


This phone only does the boring half of the English language for predictive text.

Brushed my teeth, gagged from brushing my tongue too far back, spit, AND THERE WAS A GNAT IN THE SINK. AND IT CAME FROM MY MOUTH.

I am what I like to call ‘very lol.’

Just saw an effing dementor and forgot my effing patronus #wizardfail


[15 seconds later] I meant yarp

Sighted: middle aged man in a red Mercedes convertible, pink Abercrombie shirt tucked into white cargo shorts, metallic Oakleys, running his hand through his grey-dyed-blonde mullet

Wonder if Penny dropping her toy on the tile for three hours is bugging the neighbors

I never have but I sort of have a “don’t eff with me” face

Draper, Utah. Glorious Draper, Utah.

Made some brownies and Penny had dog food

I know a lot about horses like always check your tack and stuff

Does it have balls

This has reached new heights of terrible.

A bear had been there recently but we only saw its scat.

Can I have some of your raisin bran?

I was thinking of sending Penny to get you with a little saddle

Hope your neck meat is okay

I asked [my 2 year old daughter] what your dog’s name is and she said “the orange one?”

Yeah it means there are two eggs and no sperm or one egg and an empty sperm, etc. It looks like a cluster of terrible grapes.

In an empty movie theater and some kid just sat down right next to me. I moved.

Gabababaac. That’s what my phone automatically types when I try to write “haaaaaaaaa.”

Tell me you are not discussing the Nuva ring

Oh no! Stupid Relief Society.

I’m stuck in a car for the next four hours listening to country music full blast.

[four minutes later] I had to listen to “I got friends in low places” just now.

Michigan. And did you see that one chick’s areola??

Yup. The chicken salad was selfish.

[My husband] saw her cover pic and said “the church can’t be true.”

Can you believe the dancing tonight? Nommy eminated.

I’m living in a condo in Provo with 3 other girls and have I got some doozies of stories for you about one of them! I cried one night after she threatened to shave my eyebrows in my sleep! Get excited!

[three minutes later] Well we’re friends, but I’m legitimately terrified of her several times a month. Wait…does that mean we’re not friends?

[three weeks later] My flailing arms while hugging someone hello caused my roommate to throw her piece of pumpkin pie across the room and onto no less than 3 people last night and she has never hated me more.

Monday, September 17, 2012

A conversation, circa 2011

[Another draft post that got buried]


Me: LOOK AT THE WALMART EMPLOYEE IN THIS COMMERCIAL!!!! Pretty, perfectly curled long blonde roots....
Jon: The lady that scanned my groceries today at Walmart had a bandaid across the end of her nose.

Thursday, September 13, 2012

A conversation, circa 2010

(I unearthed this gem lurking in my drafts. Hopefully there's some other good stuff in there, too! This happened about two years ago, when we were on Statia.)


Someone at a birthday party: Okay, we're going to pick teams! Everyone line up! Naomi, you pick first.
Me: A schoolyard pick??? NOOO!!! Those are the WORST, let's just assign teams. [Everyone begins lining up] No seriously, you guys! This makes me so sad! What about the person picked last?? So, so sad. Let's just assign -
Naomi: I choose Jessie.
Me: Really????? First picked, IN YOUR FACE!!!!!!!!!!

Wednesday, September 12, 2012

The Good Old Days, Episode III

See also:
Episode I
Episode II
Episode IV


This installment is in mostly chronological order and it involves a lot of screaming. If you’d known my family back in the day, you’d nod pensively and say, “Yes, of course it does. That makes sense.”

That time 3 year old Corinne began one of her famous public disturbances after my mom refused to buy her nail polish by stamping her foot and shouting, “Ya so mean! You NEVAH buy me any powish!!” (I really, really hate it when people try to spell out kidspeak, btw, and I am so sorry, but this had to be included as is because it’s one of my favorite things in the history of ever.)

How my dad would always hide one of our Easter baskets impossibly hard so that the other kids would be chowing down on candy while the last one was wandering around in circles, screaming.

How my mom purposefully created an irrational fear in her little girls. When we lived in Rexburg, our backyard fence ran parallel to a wide, fast-flowing, child-drowning canal. She would tell us stories about Boogedy, how he lived in the canal and stole children and I don’t know what else. I’m not sure if Corinne was too old to believe it, but Annie and I had no doubt. We were terrified. (I totally agree with my mom’s decision and would do the same, by the way. Kept us alive.)

That time Annie's first bird died when us girls were home alone. Just keeled right over in its cage. My dad walked inside twenty minutes later and "thought Freddie Kruger had been in the house" for all the wailing.

That time there was a tornado. I was at a friend’s 6th birthday party and when the sirens went off, HER MOM DIDN’T EVEN CARE. We just kept playing for several minutes until a concerned neighbor gave a Hagrid-like knock at the door to make sure we’d taken shelter. He was flabbergasted to see the party still in full force (“There’s a tornado coming!!!”) and the birthday kid’s mom was all, “Ooh, is that what the sirens are for?” Now would be a good time to mention that this all took place in KANSAS. He yelled at her to get us kids into the under-stairs shelter, but when she opened the door she really outed herself as an idiot. The entire thing was full of boxes and crafts. We all piled into that guy’s van instead and he drove us to City Hall where we played musical chairs in some dank basement filled with homeless people. (The tornado completely missed us. Maybe it never even touched down. I can’t remember everything, I was only six.)

How Family Home Evening at our house, the few times my parents ever attempted, always ended up in tears, screaming, and near scripture throwing.

That time my sisters and I were discussing our cousin, who we'd heard was sick, and I suggested, “Maybe he’s having his period.” IN MY DEFENSE, I was like seven, and my mom didn’t tell me about periods until I was like, married. I learned lots of incomplete information from slumber parties.

How we never said “Bless you” when others sneezed (still don’t). As a kid, I assumed it was against our religion. One of my dad’s Army friends came over for dinner when I was about 8 and blessed me when I sneezed. I froze in sheer terror, thinking he’d just done something evil in our home. My dad had to coax me to say, "Thank you,” and I gave that guy the side-eye the rest of the night.

How, when we were living in Alaska, Annie and I behaved like over-tired zombies during the summer despite the fact that my mom was putting us to bed at a reasonable hour. One night she poked her head into the room in the wee hours of the morning and discovered we had pulled back the dark-out curtains and were reading by the light of the sun.

How my sisters used to play mercilessly into my intense fear of bees by routinely screaming, “There’s a bee on you!! It’s crawling into your hair!!! THE BEE IS LAYING EGGS IN YOUR HAIR!!!!!!!!!!! Egg-head, Egg-head!!!!!!!” The ONE TIME I didn’t reward them with the typical, immediate panicked flailing and yelping was the only time that there ACTUALLY was a behemoth bumble bee clinging to the front of my shirt. The panicked reaction times a thousand followed when I finally gave in and glanced down.

How, happily, the Jessie-Bee-Teasing Era ended abruptly when Corinne came tearing out of the house in her nightgown one morning, shrieking that there was a bee in her hair. She must have been partially dreaming. Annie and I searched her permed, unruly tresses and after a few minutes of dutiful probing discovered a long-forgotten bobby pin amongst the mats. No one ever called me Egg-head again.

That time our puppy, Cricket, wandered into the laundry room alone then came out wearing a training bra.

How Annie's third bird quickly learned how to piercingly shriek, "BE QUIET!!"and my personal favorite of its repertoire, "CORINNE!!!!!!!!"

That time my parents had an uncontrollable laughing fit during Sacrament meeting. The speaker was reading “The Night Before Jesus Came,” a terribly written spin off the Christmas poem. When she got to the part about flying to the window, tearing open the shutters, and throwing up the sash, my dad leaned over to my mom and whispered, “That's why I don't eat sash anymore.” I’ve never seen my parents lose control like that before, AND IN CHURCH!! My crying mother hunched over and started furiously reading her scriptures to vainly try to counteract it. The speaker even paused and looked at them bewilderedly.

That time I accidentally hit a stranger with a rock on a beach, went like this :0, then scampered away. I’m not very good at skipping rocks.

That time my mom killed a spider without realizing it was carrying its two million babies on its back. I’ve never heard more bloodcurdling screams from a family member (aside from maybe the hamster haircut incident…and also the next paragraph).

That time I was home alone at night, the phone rang, I answered to two people screaming as though they were being brutally murdered, then the line went dead. Turns out Corinne had called me while on the road with her friend two seconds before they annihilated a raccoon.

How the guy that built our barn in Nevada was this 80-something year old man named Brownie. My mom made him rice krispy treats once, and Annie tried to attack them after school.
Mom: [shooing her away] “No, those are Brownie’s.”
Annie: [confused, suspicious] “………………….No they’re not………………they’re rice krispies.”

That time Corinne pegged our mentally disabled cat right between the eyes with a conversation heart and it didn't even blink.

That time the aforementioned mentally disabled cat pounced on Annie with intent to maim and I caught it in mid-air.

How my dad considers himself to be on a nickname basis with the prophet. My grandma’s brother died a few years ago, and my dad sat next to Thomas S. Monson (pre-prophethood) during the after-funeral luncheon. He has called him Tommy Monson ever since.

Tuesday, September 04, 2012

3-Day Weekend

My best friend for two years of middle school was Jessie Ward. We eventually slowly drifted apart and by high school barely acknowledged each other in the hallways anymore, but holy crap I loved that girl. One of the cleverest, liveliest people I’ve ever known. During our closest summer, I slept over at her house about five nights a week; the sleepovers were always at her house, because she was a serious swimmer dedicated to early morning workouts. Her dad would drive us to the pool at 6 AM and, for the first few days at least, Jessie would swim laps while I played around in an unused lane. Her swim coach, a hairy 60 something year old man who I could swear was named ‘Skip,’ soon took a liking to me and offered to coach me for free. This is how I ended up unknowingly being coached by a pedophile for an entire summer! Right before school started again, one of Skip’s (was his name Skip?? Or am I generalizing?) concerned previous swimmers tipped me off that he’d been accused of multiple counts of child molestation a few years before. Horrified, I immediately reported what I’d learned to Jessie Ward, fully expecting her to share my same reaction. Instead, she replied defensively, “He was never convicted.”

Thus ended my short career as a swimmer.

I’ve always loved swimming though, and last week when Jon accidentally exploited my minor heart condition to get me a free gym pass, I immediately went and bought a new swimsuit. I’d been OBSESSING during the Olympics over Mexican diver Paola Espinosa’s cobalt blue swimsuit and when I found something on sale ($29!) in the same color, I snatched it up. It wasn’t until a couple of days later that I realized it’s not just similar, IT IS THE EXACT SAME SUIT!! Yay.

Anyway, on to the purpose of this post.

Stuff I did this (long) weekend:
  • Paid rent
  • Went to IKEA. Listened to Jon sing ABBA on the way to IKEA.
  • Bought curtains!!!!!!!!!! Our very first curtains!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! We’ve been married over 7 years.
  • Made nine cups of Puppy Chow in preparation for a movie night with cousins. They had to cancel :(
  • Ate a lot of Puppy Chow
  • Ate my first Smashburger
  • Went to the outlets. Bought some cheap stuff. Ate an Auntie Anne’s cinnamon and sugar pretzel. Ate frozen yogurt. Ate at Smashburger again.
  • Got water in my ear
  • Physically injured my neck in flailing around trying to get the water out of my ear

And a happy belated Labor Day to you.

Wednesday, August 29, 2012

More Fun with Screen Capture

This time they're mostly from my iPhone. Best trick I ever learned, taking a picture of your screen.

First, Jon's birthday wishes to our friend Addie:

Second, this: 

Third, a sketch I drew and texted to Christa by request. Something to do with an old ward member. He was like 7'1", had a wife and three kids, and bought a Mini Cooper during his mid-life crisis. Watching them all get in and out provided endless laughs. This is Curtis all folded up inside, his chin resting on his knees:


Fourth, I laughed so hard at this:

"Just like a 'wimpy kid' in middle school, you'll know if you dog is getting bullied if, in social settings like the dog park, it gets frequently mounted..."
Fifth, this question from Annie (and my answer):

And since this is such a random post, I'll throw a couple of stories on here, too. First, Jon texted me a couple of weeks ago to say that he saw the Pregnant Man in the office complex next to our apartment!! The guy had his baby with him and the baby smiled at Jon! I immediately shared the news on Facebook and got a lackluster response. PREGNANT MAN, PEOPLE!!!!!!!!!!! I don't care that he was born female and has a uterus. Best "celebrity" sighting ever, and literally a couple hundred yards from our apartment.

Last, we went to a ward party on Saturday night and sat with these new people and their baby. From an email I sent to Christa: "I look over at Jon and there is a GIANT BEETLE on the collar of his shirt!! So I completely panic - a silent panic, I should add - and without even thinking I flicked it. AND I HAD NO IDEA WHERE IT WENT, but it flew in the general direction of the NEW LADY'S PLATE!! And she was sharing her food with her baby!!! I might have flicked a beetle into a baby's food!! No one suspected anything though, so of course I didn't say anything. Though I kept casting furtive glances at their meal."