Saturday, December 20, 2008

You will have a Merry Christmas!

This is a story about my boss giving a Christmas present to a Jehovah Witness.

The week before Christmas me and some of my co-workers were piling into my boss's car to go to yet another funding meeting. In the back seat there was a silver gift bag that we had to move so that we could sit down. Cathy gave the present to my coworker in the passenger seat and said, "Can you hold it? Hopefully Nadine is in the booth." (Nadine is an attendant in our building's parking garage.) Here's how the rest of the conversation went:

Co-worker: "Cathy, Nadine's a Jehovah Witness."
Cathy: "I know, that's why the bag is silver. I didn't even use Christmas tissue paper."
Me: "Cathy, I think she's going to know it's a Christmas present."
Cathy: "It's not a Christmas present."
Co-worker: "Maybe it would be better to give it to her in January."
Me: "I don't think Jehovah Witnesses ever accept presents. They don't do birthdays or anything."
Co-worker: "I think you can give a Jehovah Witness a wedding gift."
Me: "What's in bag?"
Cathy: "See's Candy and some nuts. I made sure the packaging didn't have any Christmas stuff on it."
Me: "I don't think you should do this."
Cathy: "We'll see what happens."

Nadine unfortunately works the afternoon shift at our garage so she wasn't at the booth when we passed by. Dang it! A few days later I got an update from Cathy.

Cathy: "So do you want to know what happened?"
Me: "What happened with what?"
Cathy: "With the silver bag."
Me: "Oh, of course I do!"
Cathy: "So last night when I left the garage I had the present ready. I held the bag out my window as I passed Nadine in the booth. I dropped the bag into her hands and I said, 'Thanks for being my friend!' and I drove off."
Me: "Did she say anything?"
Cathy: "Well, she didn't really have time. I dropped it and drove off real fast. She kinda shouted thank you as I drove away."

That's right, Cathy did a drive by gifting. What can I say, she loves Christmas. This after all is the woman with 40 plus Christmas sweaters who keeps her 15 foot fully decorated Christmas tree up in her living room all year long (on purpose.) She just has to spread the Christmas cheer around even if the receiver doesn't celebrate the holiday they WILL have a merry Christmas if Cathy has anything to do with it.

Monday, December 15, 2008

You've got to be pretty ticked off... throw your shoe at someone. Maybe I'm wrong to think this is funny. You have to be at your wits end to come to the conclusion that taking off your own footwear and throwing it at someone is the answer. I'm sure it made him feel better too. There are definitely a few people I would have liked to have thrown my shoe at last week. Why didn't I think of that? Angelo and I immediately thought of the Austin Powers connection. Here's a funny parody video on youtube.

Other possible WMDs that could really cause some damage:


My parents are visiting my sister in Texas right now and I was talking to my mom on the phone the other day. While over there she got a speeding ticket. Apparently it was a very unfair speed trap that the police officer had set up. She was telling me about it and angrily said, "He was just parked in the middle of the road with his little radar gun pointed at the traffic. It was so jacked up." Proudly, I am taking credit for that one. I taught her the term "jacked up." Even better she used it in its proper context. Good job Mom!

Thursday, December 4, 2008

You know what is awesome?

When you sneeze right as you are putting on your mascara. It happened to me this morning and this is kinda what I looked like afterward:
Don't you love giant mascara blink marks? I hate it when that happens. The sneeze's force rocked my arm up and I almost stabbed my eye out with the mascara wand. I'm lucky I escaped without serious injury. Why is it when you have a tickle in your nose that become priority #1 to the body and all other functions are thrown out the window?

Wednesday, December 3, 2008


My boss Cathy brought in two boxes of donuts this morning. You know how many people in my office eat donuts? One. Her name is Cathy. She is very sweet to bring in food, I know, but most of us are trying to be good. So a few donuts get eaten over a few days and then she puts them in the freezer. Do you know how many bags of donuts we have in our freezer at work? About 6. You can tell when Cathy has eaten a donut because there is always a trail of glazed donut icing that leads from the kitchen to her office. We've been laughing at the trail all day. When a new person see it they say, "Oh, I guess Cathy's been here." When we pointed the trail out to her earlier she just giggled and went and ate another one.

One of my favorite Cathy traits is her ADD. Of course, I say this completely out of love. For instance, when you're meeting with her you only have a finite amount of time to get your point across to her. The last few months with this big project have been an absolute joy. If you go on too long or you're talking about something boring I can literally see the moment when she isn't listening anymore. I swear we could be discussing the end of the world and if you weren't getting to the good parts quick enough you will have lost her. She starts smiling and nodding her head and says "uh huh" whenever you require an answer. Her eyes glaze over and she might as well hang a sign on her forehead that says, "we're done here."

Monday, December 1, 2008

Sunday Nap

The best blanket ever!

Tis the season

Today was the first day back to work after Thanksgiving and the official start of the holiday season. You know why? Because my boss has begun her annual "Parade of Christmas Sweaters." I don't think she has this one but she should. You get the idea.

Monday, November 24, 2008


At one of our recent staff meetings one of my co-workers was sharing his list of projects that he was working on. My boss often takes notes about what is filming so that she can cause all kinds of trouble with her newsletter. One of the projects being discussed was about an Alzheimer's documentary. My boss was furiously taking notes about the last project and wasn't really paying attention to the current conversation. She finished writing and looked up and said, "What was that one about?" I couldn't help but burst out laughing. Oh Cathy, you're one in a million.

Twilight Party

We organized a viewing party with our young women's group for the debut of the Twlight movie. We had dinner and then went to the Edwards Movie Theater. (Get it??? Ha ha.) Lucy made goodie bags for our outing with pictures from the movie on candy bars. It was awesome. Here's some pics.
We all liked the movie. It has its share of cheese but there also some good parts. My favorite part of the night was coming back for ice cream and hearing the teenager's reviews of the movie. They are so entertaining. Being obsessed is fun!

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Election Day Losers

While everyone else was watching the pundits discuss the new president of the United States, Angelo and I were at Target buying the just released Twilight movie soundtrack. We got the last copy available at the Target in Lemon Grove. Boo-ya! Take that tweeners! Angelo has been really into the Twlight playlists and the soundtrack is pretty good. So now that this election day nonsense has ended we can focus on more important the fact that the Twilight movie opens in 16 days! Shhhh! Don't tell anyone that we are so obsessed. That would be embarassing.

A dent, some bags and a twitch

That is all that is left from my October. I feel like I have been MIA for a whole month! I've had two major proposals due at work within a week of each other and they account for our funding for the next 18 months... so no pressure. It's been killing me. I turned in the second 30 plus page proposal on Friday. Get ready for a whine-o-rama.

This is my dent. Apparently, I furrow my brow when I'm frustrated, stressed, concentrating, thinking something is stupid, looking at the computer too long, or waiting for the printer to spit out my pages. So that means I've been furrowing a lot this last month. Well now I have this big old dent in between my eyes. Here's a picture. (Please ignore my very unkept brows. It's been a long month.)
What the freak! I have a giant wrinkle in my face now!

The bags I referred to earlier are the two dark ones that now reside under my eyes. No amount of cover up has been able to fully conceal them. Last weekend all I could do was sleep. I crashed on the couch at 7:30pm on Halloween. I am lame.

The second report's deadline was moved up by about 3 days so that was really fun. Last Thursday afternoon as I was in the final stages of printing and compiling the second report I developed a twitch in my left eye! That one made me laugh though. It was like a badge of honor which I announced proudly to all of my co-workers. "Hey look! This report has given me a twitch in my eye!" You've got to be about ready to flip out in order for a twitch to appear and I was ready to crack up by then. They were all very nice to me that day.

So I got everything turned in last week and now this week we have to present to the funding board. On Monday we began outlining our oral report and developing a Powerpoint presentation. That's when the freak out finally happened. I don't know what crazy juice my boss was drinking that day but she came into my office and asked that I work with the intern (that's right the Guerilla) to develop the Powerpoint. I guess last week she'd asked him to work on the Powerpoint so that we could maybe integrate some of his ideas. I had seen a copy of the presentation that he had slapped together and it was a joke. One of the graphics on one of the slides looked like three ping pong balls in a toilet. I'm not trying to be mean but our funding is not really the time to be utilizing our vigilante intern. I couldn't keep it together and that's when the yelling began. I told her that I would absolutely not work with the intern and some other stuff. Oopsies. We worked it out later in the day but wow, I had hit my wall. (By the way, I won because the intern is nowhere near this project anymore. He's back concentrating full time on the demise of our enemies.) I will be really glad when this week is over. Next week we have our big industry networking party that we put on every year so that isn't going to be any prettier. So basically I will be glad when Thanksgiving is here. That is bad considering it's only the 4th. Sorry for the whine fest but I can't afford therapy, I don't eat my troubles away anymore and I don't have many more people that I can yell at.

Some good news is that I have maintained by good eating and exercising habits despite all of this and my total weight lost is now at 33 pounds. Wohoo!

Friday, October 31, 2008


Angelo's department at work had a roman theme for Halloween. They had a gladiator, a roman queen and a Caesar salad. Angelo dressed up as a Roman Gnome. Get it? Like the "roamin" Gnome? HA HA! He won second place in the company's costume contest. It was the shoes that won it for him. Not bad for throwing the costume together the night before.

Monday, October 20, 2008

Angelo's 30th Birthday

Angelo turned the big 3-0 on the 17th! We went out to dinner to Shogun (like a Benihana) with our parents and his brother. Here are pictures from the night just to prove Angelo's family exists. (They are very hard to get on film.) Here's us with my parents.Angelo acting his age with his mom and dad.
Angelo and his brother Nino.
For his birthday I surprised him with a ride in a WWII plane. You've got to do something fun when you turn 30, right? This was super cool! Angelo got to fly all over San Diego. The pilot let him fly the plane and they did loops and all kinds of tricks. He got to pull 4Gs!

Here's a video of the take off.

Thursday, October 2, 2008

The Guerilla

I have named the new intern. He is now to be known as The Guerilla. Notice the spelling; this is not in reference to a big hairy monkey, but what the dictionary defines as "a person who engages in irregular warfare especially as a member of an independent unit carrying out harassment and sabotage." Actually, he named himself. I have overheard many of his cell phone conversation (remember his proximity to my office) and he has often referred to himself to his friends as "guerilla." I so wish I was kidding about this but sadly, I am not.

He offered to knock someone off again at another one of our staff meetings. One time, ok maybe that's a joke, twice, I'm keeping my distance. Then later I heard the following conversation between Guerilla and my co-worker:

(They were talking about something not going right. He was obviously joking around but dude, come on, stop with the killing jokes.)
Guerilla: "We could just shoot 'em."
Co-worker: "You just want to shoot somebody, don't you?"
Guerilla: (Laughing) "I do, I really do."

If anything bad happens to someone who wasn't nice to my company it wasn't our fault! It was the Guerilla! I do not want to go to jail as an accessory to murder.

Tuesday, September 30, 2008

For your entertainment

For a mutual activity our youth group made some awesome videos. Check them out.

Here's the url:

Here's the url:

Monday, September 22, 2008

More intern shouting...

...from the office next to mine. He yelled, "AHHH YEAHHH!" today to himself.

There was also a really loud yawn and some whistling too.

Things I have whispered from my office: "Shut up" & "You are an idiot."

Friday, September 19, 2008

Going Bananas

I had the exciting task of taking my parents to the airport this morning. As I entered their house my mom yelled down the hall to my dad that I had arrived. My dad shouted back something about which shirt was packed, I don't know. My parents are retired and therefore spend A LOT of time together. Which means that sometimes they annoy the crap out of each other. It's hilarious. Sitting around while they finish packing for a 5 day trip was beyond entertaining. My mom had a bunch of stuff on the kitchen counter that she hadn't put in her carry on bag yet. My dad was buzzing around the kitchen and started asking her what she was going to do with this stuff. She told him that she would take care of it. He asked her another question and she grabbed a banana, pointed it at him, and blurted out, "ARE YOU GOING TO EAT THIS BANANA????" I think she was just trying to illustrate to him that his constant questions had become annoying but instead she just sounded like she was brewing her own brand of crazy. I couldn't contain myself and my dad and I just started laughing. Earlier my mom had asked my dad to take out the trash before they left. While they were still gathering up their stuff I grabbed the bag and took it outside to the trash cans. When I got back my mom was shouting down the hall from her bedroom asking my dad if he had taken out the trash. My dad wandered into the kitchen and asked her where the trash was. To my mom, of course, this was a stupid question. "What do you mean where's the trash? I left it right there next to the trash can!" (I decided I would just sit and enjoy this for a while.) My dad yelled back, "There's no trash." My mom comes back into the kitchen and says, "What do you mean? Did we loose the trash? You didn't take the trash out? Where did it go?" My dad responds, "I don't know, there's no trash." By this time I couldn't hide my convulsing shoulders anymore and they looked at me. My mom asked if I had taken it out and I said no, I hadn't seen any trash. They knew I was lying and the mystery of the missing trash had been solved. Sometimes its fun to make your parents think they're crazy. As they finished up it was fun to just randomly shout, "ARE YOU GOING TO EAT THIS BANANA????" at them. My mom looked at me as we exited the house and said, "Ah shoot, this isn't going to be a blog is it???"

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

Operation: Name the New Intern

So I was being sarcastic when I posted this farewell to Sybil blog that said..."Keep your fingers crossed that we'll get another entertaining intern this summer. I'm keeping my fingers crossed for the overzealous ex-military kid that has shown up at our office 3 times in one week asking about our intern program." Luckily, that didn't happen.

Instead it is happening NOW, during the fall semester. That's right, apparently we ordered a big bag of crazy and it came in the form of the overzealous ex-military kid. My co-worker announced earlier this month that she had lined up a great new intern, a real "go-getter." Later on as I walked past the intern office my jaw fell ajar as I recognized who this "go-getter" was. At this point I didn't have any real ammunition to inform anyone of the crazy we had let infiltrate our operations but it didn't take long for him to demonstrate it himself.

At his first staff meeting we were complaining about a person that we deal with a lot that isn't very helpful in our cause. New intern blurted out, "Hey, you know bullets are only 50 cents, you want me to knock him off for you?" Everyone laughed a little but I just wore a fake smile and inside I knew that this was going to be an interesting few months.

On a more annoying personal level, we have him parked in the office right next to mine and he has this awesome habit of sighing REALLY loud. Just out of the blue, he'll screech out a really long, irritating sigh. You know, the attention seeking kind. The first time he did it he scared the piss out of me. I haven't come up with a good nickname yet. It will come, they have a way of naming themselves. This is going to be great.

Monday, September 15, 2008


I have officially lost 26 pounds! Wahoo! Today was my goal deadline. It has been 4 months since I really got serious about my need to be healthier. I was only 4 pounds shy of my 30 pound goal weight and I am so happy!

This is me now compared to what I am affectionately calling "Puffy Katie." The "Puffy Katie" picture was taken in April and this is me now. My SparkPeople program has worked so well for me. I have not had to starve or give up many foods that I like. (The only thing I am really staying away from is french fries but I haven't missed them that much.) I really needed to learn how many calories were in the foods I ate. I also have been really committed to working out at least 3 times a week. I now fit into the clothes I was wearing the last time I lost some weight. I'm not stopping here though. I got to set a new goal weight and deadline today and anything above this is just icing on the cake. (Figuratively speaking of course.) I feel so much better and my headaches are few and far between. Angelo says that I am much happier too. This is totally possible! There are good days and bad but it is so worth it! This is really cliche but it's not about a diet. You really have to have a long term perspective. I am not eating and exercising like this from this date to this date. I am eating and exercising like this for the rest of my life. No more "Puffy Katie!"

Saturday, August 30, 2008

Toe Cheese

When we were in Utah, Angelo and I we were hanging out with my nieces and nephew and we had an hour to kill before our reunion dinner. We found a Bed, Bath & Beyond and decided it would be fun to have a little competition. We split up and had 15 minutes to go and find the strangest item the store sells. For anyone who has been to Bed, Bath & Beyond you know there are plenty of choices. We each returned with our own treasures. The winning item turned out to be some house slippers that you were suppose to use to clean your floors. They came complete with a warning that a person should take great care when using the slippers and that the company can't be held responsible for any injuries you might incur. Angelo's choice was also a great one. It was an item called the "Ped Egg." This little egg shaped contraption is suppose to get rid of callouses and dead skin. Essentially, it is a cheese grater for your feet. What was especially disturbing about this product were the detailed pictures on the back of the packaging. The picture showing the flakes of skin being emptied into a waste basket was really great. It turns out this product has it's own website which has a very informative video on it. You should definitely check it out. There is a shot of someone emptying the product and it is waaaay grosser than the picture on the back of the packaging. So after we played our little game in the store we were joking about who actually buys this stuff. It took us only 3 days to answer this question.

When we got back from our trip Angelo was telling his mom about all the stuff we'd done. He told her about our little outing to Bed, Bath & Beyond and about the Ped Egg. Guess who owns one??? You'll never guess...I'll have to tell you...wait for mother-in-law! She told him that she had bought one for his father but after one use my father-in-law had deemed it too dangerous for his feet. Apparently it is too easy to grate past the callouses and go on the healthy, useful skin. Bloody Ped Egg! (Can I please enter my "Duh!" here.) My mother-in-law is a very practical woman though and it turns out that was not the end of the Ped Egg. She told Angelo that after she cleaned it up she found that it was the best kitchen zester she had ever had! (Insert dry heave here.)

Friday, August 15, 2008


Happy Birthday Dad! My dad is the coolest guy in the world. He is funny and kind hearted and just wonderful! My dad is a retired fire captain for San Diego and always came home from work smelling like diesel fuel. My dad's bandaid of choice is duct tape. Maybe that's where I get my aversion to the ER. You bleed, you just tape it up. He has always been very enterprising. You want a house, you build it yourself. Your car breaks down, you fix it in the driveway. Going to amusement parks as kids was always kinda funny. My dad always seemed to be about 10 paces ahead of us, much more excited to get on a ride than us - the KIDS. He would keep looking back at us trying to get us to hurry up. My mom would get so irritated and tell him to slow down and wait for us but that never worked. My dad loves telling stories. Some of his best ones are when he starts laughing before he finishes it. He'll laugh so hard he starts to cough and he's trying to get out the rest of the story but you don't even care how it ends because it's hilarious just watching him crack himself up. This picture totally sums up my dad. (Karyn, I stole this from your myspace.) My dad loves his dog and is always waiting with a camera. We love you Dad - you are the best! (Dad, I did not choose this picture because it has my chair in it, that's just an added bonus.)

Thursday, August 14, 2008

Utah News

It has been a while since I lived in Utah but it didn't take long till the old Utah vernacular came rushing back to my mind. In the four years I lived there to go to college I have to admit I did fall victim to some of the Utah slang. I was a big fan of both "flip" and "fetch" and I'm sure I occasionally fell victim to the dreaded "oh my heck." So I almost laughed my head off when we were watching KSL News and the sportscaster (a sophisticated, middle aged man) reported that "all heck broke loose" during a NASCAR race crash. After the footage of the wreck was shown, the camera cut back to the female anchor who simply shouted, "Yowzah!" I couldn't decide if that was fun and casual or weird and unprofessional. It caught me off guard but oh my heck it was flippin' hilarious.

Family Reunion

We just got back from our annual Ballard family reunion (my mom's side) in Park City, Utah. Here's a picture of Tommy, Whitney, Karyn, Dad, Me, and Mom... We always have a great time and it's nice to see lots of extended family. Here are some highlights:

I got to see one of my favorite people - my old roommate Brittany! She and Tyler took us to Cafe Rio which was a first for us. I am so glad we got to see each other!We had fun going on the alpine slide! Here's our trip up the lift: (Can you figure out which one isn't blood related?)Here's the annual scarfing of the molten chocolate cake at Chili's with Michelle, Sherise, and Whit. The record is 1 minute 32 seconds...My sister Karyn came this year! It was fun to see her and it was fun staying up till 4am talking about random stuff. Here she is on the alpine slide... Posing in Park City. The sign reads,"When the Hunter Becomes Hunted." (We agreed we'd all been reading too much Twilight.) We also got to play the game Rock Band with the family which was totally fun. I suck at drums but I did okay on guitar. We saw The Dark Knight on a giant IMAX screen and got to swim a lot. It was a great trip!

Bloody Luau

I'm really late in posting this blog but it's kinda funny so here you go. Last month our church had a luau party with fire dancers and everything. We have had to do some fundraising for a trip our youth were taking so we had set up a dessert auction and also a photo booth at the luau. Angelo had done this at work before where you take pictures of people in front of a green screen and then have them choose a background for their pictures. It turns out really cute. Angelo had borrowed the green screen from work and we went down early to set up. The screen sits on to a metal frame that you can move up and down. Unfortunately, once the party started we had a mishap and the frame came falling down. Angelo caught it as it came down but in the process the metal part of the frame sliced his finger wide open. He didn't really notice until he felt the wetness running down his arm and examined the area to see what had happened. He had a deep cut on one of his knuckles and he was dripping blood all over the floor. So he rushed to the bathroom to try and get it to stop bleeding and I was left trying to clean the blood up off the floor. I have spoken of my aversion to blood before and I can tell you that I still feel the same way. A little is ok but once there are actually drips I'm in trouble. My ears started ringing and my vision was getting a little tunneled. My favorite part was when I was leaning over cleaning up the blood all over the floor with some napkins, barely holding it together, and some idiot who was standing there waiting in the food line laughing, asked me, "Is that Angelo's blood?" What I wanted to say was, "Yes, you moron, my husband is bleeding all over the place and I get to clean it up, hope you enjoy your food!" But I just nodded and went back to smearing the blood around. Once I figured I couldn't do that anymore I went to find Angelo. I basically floated to the bathroom, ears still ringing, and found him with his hand over a blood speckled sink. I had to lean against the wall once I saw that. Then Angelo goes, "Look, it's really deep, I think it hit the bone." I looked away and shouted, "Are you crazy! I can't look at that! Dude, I'm barely hanging on here. What do you want to do?" He wrapped in in paper towels and went to our car's first aid kit to get some gauze. I couldn't believe I was left to clean up more blood! So I quickly wiped the sink down and headed back toward the party. I had to sit down before my body forced me to LAY down. One of the girls in our ward who is a nurse said Angelo better go to urgent care to get it stitched up. I tried to get out of going to the place where there would likely be even more blood but eventually conceded. So we left the picture taking to Ann (thanks Ann - you're a lifesaver!) and we went to get him fixed up. Of course we couldn't leave until we got our luau picture taken! (Ann had told me I looked pretty green by this time so here...) That's pretty much what we looked like when we arrived at urgent care - Hawaiian shirts and all. It didn't take long for us to get admitted and soon we were in our own little curtained room. They cleaned the wound and decided the best thing was to glue it shut. It was pretty weird. Here's what it looked like glued together.

The best part of urgent care are the conversations you get to eavesdrop on. The guy right next to us, sharing our curtain, had some kind of golf injury. (I know, who gets hurt playing golf?) He thought he had hurt his ribs or something while he'd been playing. The male nurse had gone in to discuss the x-rays they had taken. Here's how that conversation went:

Nurse; "Nothing is broken, you must have just pulled some of the muscles in your back."
Golfer: "Ok."
Nurse: "What we suggest you do is get some Icy Hot Balm. It comes in a blue jar. Get that stuff and rub in on your rib cage a few times a day. Just be careful not to touch your testicles after that because that stuff burns!" (Obviously speaking as a voice of experience!)
Golfer: "Uh, ok."Angelo and I had immediately broken into a fit of silent laughter when we heard that. (You know where you are laughing hysterically but are keeping quiet so no one knows you were listening?) That almost made the whole trip worthwhile. The trip cost us $75 but can you really put a price tag on good advice?


So I have to gloat for a moment. My pants no longer fit! ( I mean that in a good way.) I mentioned a while back that I was going to start working out and be healthier and I have been a very good girl. I started working out pretty consistently in March and was feeling better but not really losing any weight. On May 1st I signed up on which is a FREE health website which is so cool. It helps you manage your fitness minutes and also has a nutrition tracker where you input food you eat and then it tell you how many calories you are eating. It helps you balance what you need to eat versus how long you need to workout to reached your desired goals. It's super easy to use! It has lots of other tools as well like message boards and articles too. Once I started tracking my food calories and fitness minutes I started losing weight immediately. I have now lost 20 pounds! (That works out to be over 10% of my previous body weight - doesn't that sound cool?) An article last month reported a recent study which showed that if you record your food intake your chances of losing weight doubles!

I had no idea how many calories I was eating in a day. I had to be pushing 3,000 calories per day easily. Now I've learned how to judge portions and I basically eat what I want just not as much. People have no idea what they are putting in their bodies. New York City just enacted a law which makes food establishments print the calories with the prices of their food. Check out this article. People's reactions to the postings are hilarious.

So I am adjusting to my new lifestyle change. That what it's called, it's not a diet, it's a "lifestyle change". Whatever it's called I'm liking it.

Wednesday, August 6, 2008


That's when the screaming started and I found myself, Angelo, and Nikki (my 15 year old niece who was staying with us) standing in a line at Barnes and Nobles on Saturday morning. That would be 12:01 AM. You may ask, 'What were you doing at a bookstore at midnight with a ton of screaming tweens?" And I will proudly say, "Getting Breaking Dawn the last book in the Twilight saga, duh!" Ok, so I actually wish we could blame that on the 15 year old with us but we can't, she hasn't read any of the books yet. It was Angelo and I. Even though we had pre-ordered on Amazon we decided we wanted to go and get the book on opening night. (Angelo is as bad as I am.) So we braved the crowds and stood at the end of the twisting line that circled the entire perimeter of the store. Hundreds of people waited and at 12:01 AM the screaming began. I was doubting whether I wanted to stand in line forever to get the book, I was getting tired and was slightly embarrassed. Angelo convinced me to stay and then around the corner came one of my young women and her mom. (Most of our YW are hooked.) All I could do is laugh. So we stood in line and waited with them and watched as all the teenagers hollered as they got their copy of the book. We were at the end of the line pretty much and had a while to wait. That's when a toothless women walked by and stated that Walmart had the book on sale now and that it was cheaper. So we ventured over to Walmart and got our copy. Woohoo! So I had not planned on starting the book that night but the tweeners excitement was infectious and as soon as I got home I settled into my comfy chair and began. I didn't go to bed until 5AM! Then I took a 4 hour nap and started again. The book is good! I think one of my 13 year old young women described it best when I asked her what she thought on Sunday. The book is split up into 3 sections and she goes, "I read the first part and I was like, 'Oh my gosh!' and then I went on to the second part and I was like, 'OH MY GOSH!!' and then by the third part I was like, 'OH...MY...GOSHHHHHH!!!!" Yeah, she's right, I concur. Angelo got his Amazon copy on Monday and he concurs too. That's right we own TWO copies of Breaking Dawn and we're proud of it!

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Angry Baby

You know how most little kids are really cute and sweet and they will come up to you and say hi or wave? Yeah, that's really nice. Well, we have this one little toddler at our church that is more like this...
Angelo and I have named her The Angry Baby. Our first encounter was when we happened to sit next to Angry Baby and her parents in church. Most kids will approach you and wave or smile. Well not Angry Baby. She came over, looked at us, scowled and then shrieked. (Seriously, like the above picture, in the middle of our church meeting. Have you seen Galaxy Quest? It's just like the sweet little martians that turn out to be monsters.) We tried to give Angry Baby the benefit of the doubt. Maybe she missed nap time, maybe she's teething. Nope, the more we see of Angry Baby the more we're convinced she is just that - angry. Her parents look pretty nice but every time we see them they are chase Angry Baby or trying to coax her back from running around the room wreaking havoc. Last week Angry Baby was sitting behind us in church and we heard her yell and then there was a crash. Angelo and I just leaned into each other and whispered, "Angry Baby."

Friday, July 25, 2008

Crazy Clown Man

My boss and I went to go pick up some cookies from a hotel today. (No this was not business related. She likes the cookies from the Doubletree Hotel so we went and bought a bunch.) We parked and as we were walking across the street Cathy stops dead in her tracks and goes, "OOOhh, be careful! Don't go over there, there's a crazy clown man over there!" As I looked across the street I saw a slight variation of this...

On any other week it might be scary to see a man dressed in a nurse costume with clown makeup and a red wig but this week is Comic-Con in San Diego so these jokers are a dime a dozen. I said, "Cathy, it's Comic-con remember? He's just dressed up like the Joker from The Dark Knight." Cathy responded, "Oh well, it's not every day you see a crazy clown man waiting for the bus."

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Happy Birthday Laura!

My sister Laura had a birthday earlier this month! We hope it was great. She is exactly 10 years older than me so I can always remember how old she is! It was so cool having older siblings. They could take me places and they were also really fun to embarrass. One time when Laura was getting ready for a formal dance she and my mom were trying to get her ready and she was having a problem with her dress and her bra. I remember sitting there watching them deal with this. When her date arrived everyone was taking pictures I blurted out in front of everyone - "Laura, are you wearing a bra???" I don't remember much after that,just her stunned face. She was pretty pissed. For some reason I have lots of pee stories associated with Laura - I don't know why. Once when I was about 6 I did something to her and she threaten to "tickle me until I peed!" I just laughed in her face and so she grabbed me, threw me on the floor, and sure enough, she made good on her word. All that was left on the family room floor was a little "W" wear my butt had been. She was very satisfied. I got her back though. Another time I was sitting on her lap and we were watching TV. I distinctly remember having to go pee but I was really comfortable. So I decided to just let it go... Once the warm moisture hit her, the next thing I remember is flying through the air! Laura has always been so much fun and I have lots of fun memories with her. Happy Birthday! We love you!

Thursday, July 17, 2008

We put the FUN in dysFUNctional

We recently had a hotel call us to try and help them with an event they are putting on. They were running into trouble with some permits. My boss had gotten the initial call for help and was describing the issues with the rest of us. She goes, "They are having an event on their rooftop pool deck and they are having a band play...he said something about a blowfish and a hootie?" The rest of us immediately burst out laughing and one of my co-workers goes, "Cathy, that's the band's name: Hootie and the Blowfish!"


A few weeks ago the poor Kansas City BBQ burned down. What? You don't know what the Kansas City BBQ is? Well it was the bar featured in the movie "Top Gun" where Goose plays the piano and sings Great Balls of Fire. (I know , it's ironic.) The owner had acquired lots of memorabilia from the director when they shot the movie here almost 25 years ago. Their most prized piece of memorabilia was Tom Cruise's maverick fighter pilot helmet which they displayed in a big plexiglass box. Man, did we covet that piece! We found out the restaurant was burning when the local Fox News called to interview my boss about it. I went home and watched the news that night to see what they used of Cathy's interview. In the footage of the burned out building there was a pile of rubble which included a blackened helmet with burnt plastic melted around it. As Angelo and I watched the news story I yelled, "See! If we had had the maverick helmet it would still be safe!" Angelo looked and me and said, "Didn't you guys almost burn down your office last week with macaroni and cheese?" What else could I do but shut up?

Friday, June 20, 2008


"Something is on FIRE!" These frenzy inciting words were uttered by one of my co-workers today. At about noon my boss inadvertently tried to catch our office on fire. It was great! Recently Cathy has been on a diet kick which has been great for me because it has cut down on the amount of pie and carbs that were constantly being paraded around the office. Today she brought in a low carb mac and cheese microwave dinner for lunch. She mentioned that she had found it in the back of her freezer and it had lots of freezer burn on it but she was going to try it and see if it was still good. So she goes and puts it in the microwave and comes into my office to chat while it was “cooking.” That’s when the shouting started… “There’s something on fire!” Cathy and I looked wide-eyed at one another and then ran down to the kitchen. Cathy yells, “My lunch!” By then we could see smoke billowing out into the hallway and my co-worker Lynn trying to tame the smoke. Cathy beat me to the microwave and once it was open even more smoke filled the room. So the whole kitchen is smoky and I am doing my best to waft the smoke away from the smoke detector, flinging by body in the air and wind milling my arms about. (Ironically, we had had a building fire drill on Tuesday. We passed with flying colors. In a real fire I think we would all die.) So now Lynn has run into our boardroom to get the new fans we had just purchased for when the offices got hot. (Even with the air conditioning sometimes it gets stuffy in a high rise. We hadn't anticipated this kinda hot though.) Unfortunately, all three of them were still in the boxes and so while I’m jumping in the air Lynn is furiously dissecting the packaging to get to the standing fan. It turns out fans aren’t really an “out of the box” item. There were components to put together so Lynn just took the head of the fan, laid in on the floor and plugged it into an outlet near the kitchen. So while Lynn was battling the fan and I was jumping in the air, Cathy was standing at the microwave in the smoke filled kitchen. Her eyes were blinking vigorously trying to stand the stinging smoke and she was attempting to wipe up the charcoal mess with paper towels. So I’m shouting at her, “Cathy, get out of the kitchen! The smoke is bad for you, get out of the kitchen! Now is not the time to be cleaning the microwave!” So Lynn comes running down and starts yelling at her too. As soon as Cathy stopped cleaning the microwave, I started working on the other box of fans which ALSO required some assembling. So after we were able to blow most of the smoke out in the hallway we were able to assess the damage. There were piece of fan boxes, Styrofoam, plastic and fan parts strewn everywhere. The microwave was a mess and the mac and cheese – well, see for yourself…

We all stink too. We smell like a bonfire where the kindling was burnt microwave popcorn. I can’t believe the fire alarm didn’t go off. Apparently, my fire dance had helped. That's all we would have needed is a bunch of firefighters laughing at our blackened mac and cheese. (Ironically, their offices are in our building too!) There hadn’t been any real flames but the smoke had been pretty heavy. Later we presented the petrified lava rock (aka mac and cheese) to Cathy for lunch. Yummy!

Earlier Cathy had told me the mac and cheese had been in her freezer since the last time she was on weight watchers. Lynn and I examined the burned up packaging and found a date from 1999. Um, yeah! I would not advise anyone to attempt to eat anything that is almost a decade old! Besides not tasting good it’s a fire hazard!

Friday, June 6, 2008

Do you need diapers?

Yesterday Angelo's mom called to give us an important message. After chatting with Angelo for a few moments on the phone she added that she would be willing to pay for us to have a diaper service when we have a baby. This would seem like a normal conversation if, A) we had ever talked about wanting a diaper service, and B) WE WERE ACTUALLY PREGNANT! (Which we are not.) What does she think, "Well, maybe if I just talk as if there is a baby there will be one!" These occurrences are happening more and more frequently. This is almost as good as when she gave us a garden stake about 6 months ago that read "Grandpa's Garden." (It kinda looked like this one...) When I took it out of the brown bag it had been delivered in, Angelo explained that she got it for us so that when we got pregnant we could announce it by giving it to my father-in-law. As my eyes got bigger and bigger Angelo tried to diffuse the situation but to no avail. He got an earful of "We will announce we are pregnant the way we want to! Why doesn't she keep the %*@$ sign and give it to her husband when he finds out he's a grandpa?" I don't know, that one really got me going.

And just for the record I have no desire to use cloth diapers. Even if you (mother-in-law) used them, I will be filling up the landfill just like everyone else with poopy diapers.

(So this post had been taken down because someone had thought it was too mean. I edited it a bit and just for the record, I do love my mother-in-law, and this is just meant to be funny. So just shut your face Angelo. :) See, if you put a smiley face after something it makes it alright!)

Top 10 signs U R a n00b

The other day Angelo and I were driving some of the young men from our church somewhere. One asked honestly, "Why are gas prices so high?" Before we could say anything another kid said, "Because they are n00bs." We can thank all the online gamers for this new gem added to our lexicon. My husband is an avid nerd, I mean, online gamer (World of Warcraft is his vice of choice at the moment.) I call him a n00b all the time. It's kinda like a term of endearment now.

So here are my Top Ten Signs that U R a n00b: (Husband - I'm looking at you.)

#10. You want a license plate frame for your car that reads, "My other mode of transportation is a flying Gryphon."
#9. Your wife asks you if your going to be playing WoW with your "online friends" tonight and you smile and answer in the affirmative.
#8. You are heard shouting, "Need more aggro!" while pounding on your computer keys pretty much every Wednesday, Friday and Saturday night.
#7. You can decifer what the acronym MMORPG means. (For us non-n00bs it means: Massively Multiplayer Online Role-Playing Game.)
#6. When someone asks where you're from you proudly state that you hail from the Eastern Kingdom of Azeroth.
#5. Your "friends" don't have real names. Instead you call them Scraggs or Beltor.
#4. You complain about setting up your online schedule and how hard it is to balance all the other players needs.
#3. You judge others by their class. No, not that class, but whether they are Mage, Paladin, Priest, Rogue, Warrior, or Warlock. Priests are sooo much cooler than mages.
#2. Your avatar just upgraded to some new armor and you are totally stoked about how cool it makes you look.
#1. You can't hear your wife grumbling about what a n00b you are because you have noise canceling headphones on.

So if you don't understand any of the above, be grateful - you are n00b-free. If any of that sounds familiar're probably a n00b (or live with one.)


Okay, so I'm officially in the club. I just finished the first Twilight book and I loved it! I'm hooked! I know I am late jumping on the bandwagon but I am soooo on it now. I was such a bad girl and I brought Twilight to work yesterday telling myself that I would just read it while I was eating lunch. Well I'm a liar. I couldn't resist the temptation and I ended up reading it for most of the day. I'd set it down after a chapter and then it would just call to me and I'd have to pick it up again. I know, worst employee ever. I finished it though and now I've got to get my hands on the second one. I'm now a vampire fan - vampires are hot! Mom, I'm coming over to get it today!

Shut your face! is reporting that Clint Eastwood told Spike Lee to "shut his face." How awesome is that??? There's a phrase that isn't used as much as it should be. It's offensive without being vulgar. It's a great come back..."oh yeah, well...why don't you just shut your face!!??" Love that!

Do you ever wonder what happens when you're not home?

Apparently the cats are up to all kinds of shenanigans while the people are away. FYI - That is not me in my spot in the bed.

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

Catnip Bandit

Last weekend I had bought a new scratching post for our cats. It had come with a packet of catnip. We had never given our cats any catnip before, mostly because my mom had always told me catnip was like drugs for cats. I had also gone through the D.A.R.E. program at school and I had learned that DRUGS ARE BAD. So we had maintained a drug free home up until the dang scratching post came home. Once the new post came out of it's package my cat Otto starting sniffing around and got a crazy look on his face: "Drugs! Where are the drugs!" So we showed him the little packet and he starting rubbing on it. So we put a little on a toy and he rubbed all over it. Our other cat Jasper was completely unaffected by the catnip but Otto was in love. We had initially set the packet of catnip on our desk in the kitchen but Otto kept jumping up to find it. We then put it high up on a shelf in the kitchen. Later on that night Angelo and I were watching TV. We kept hearing a rattling noise and just figured it was the cats playing with a toy. Angelo got up to get a drink and this is what he found in our kitchen. There was Otto laying happily drunk in the middle of the kitchen with the entire packet of catnip scattered all over the floor. Do you see the shame? This is what happened when I tried to grab the empty bag from under him. If you look carefully you can see specks of catnip flying about. So once we got the bag away from him I took him outside and shook all the catnip off of him. He was covered in it. See what happens when you get mixed up with drugs?

Friday, May 30, 2008

Do you hear that beeping?

We have had to purchase a bunch of new equipment recently at work - new backup drives, replacement BlackBerrys, and some software. Too much money! I had spent a lot of the day getting the 3 new BlackBerrys up and running. (Actually we call them CrackBerrys in our office because anyone who gets one is from that point on always using it, they're addictive. I don't have one. I say NO to drugs.) The IT guy had been out setting up our new backup system and he had found an error in our server which he fixed. (It's always a perpetual snowball once one thing breaks, right?) The next morning when I got to work I was sitting in my office when I heard two distinctive beeps. A few minutes later they happened again. I got up and went to our server room which is right across the hall from my office. I waited...nothing. So I went back to my desk. Then a few moments later - beep, beep. It wasn't a loud noise - just muted beeps. It didn't seem to be very consistent either. It was a few minutes apart every time I heard it. If there is one thing that I've learned as an office manager it's that a beeping machine is never a happy machine. That usually is a precursor to a quick death. So thus the game began. I'd sit for a few minutes, I'd hear it again and I'd jump up and run to the hallway to see if I could tell which room it was coming from. (There are any number of machines in close proximity to my office.) I stood in the hall for a while and didn't hear it. I sat back down and then...there it was again. I was pretty sure it was in the server room so I went and sat in there for about 5 minutes determined to catch the culprit. Nothing happened. This was starting to make me really mad. Back to my office I went. Not 30 seconds later - beep, beep. So I darted out in the hall and one of my co-workers was in our mailroom. I asked if she heard any beeping. Nope. I went back and sat again...beep, beep. I ran back out shout, "That! Did you hear that??? That beeping noise??" Still no and this time I got a crazy look too. Ok so now I'm thinking I've finally gone batty AND I'm convincing my coworker that I'm crazy too. So I'm at my desk and the beeps go off. It must be somewhere in my office. I figured the only machine it could be was my computer which isn't even a year old yet. I'm thinking, "No! We can't afford any new equipment! Please don't be my computer!" So I get down on the floor (on all fours) and hold my head right up against the computer tower. If it's beeping, I'm going to find it. Nothing, only the faint buzz of radioactive rays going into my brain. So after sitting like that for a while I hear it but it doesn't really sound like it's the computer. So I'm crawling around on the floor like a bloodhound trying to find the incessant beeping. After a few minutes I end up at a box that the new BlackBerrys had come in. I had thrown all the new phone boxes and packaging materials in there. As I stood over the box - there it went! BEEP BEEP! Ah ha! So I dove into the box and at the bottom I found one of the old BlackBerry devices (that had been deactivated) with an alarm prompt on the screen! I told it off for a few minutes and then I violently took out the battery which was actually very satisfying. I held the device high in the air and yelled, "Curse you BlackBerry! You shall beep no more!" So here's a memo for all office machinery: Don't mess with me. I will find you and I will remove your batteries without any hesitation.

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Finale Thoughts

It's finally over - the American Idol juggernaut has left the building for another 6 months or so. What'd you think of the finale??? Here is my recap of the evening...

The opening number had all the idol contestants from this year and some dancers from my all time favorite show - So You Think You Can Dance. That made me excited to have that show coming back. Those sneaky producers.

I had totally forgotten about most of the early kick-offs which made me feel sorry for them. I hope they enjoyed singing in the finale because I fear that's the end for many of them. And where was Jessica Alba, I mean, Danny Noriega? He was one of the only ones I remembered from about cut 8 and below and he was nowhere in site. S/he is pregnant so s/he must be pretty busy.Another person I had totally forgotten about was the Janis Joplin chick, Amanda Overmeyer. Boy, was she phoning in her performances all night. She just didn't look happy to be there. And can't someone do something about her helmet hair? I felt bad for her.
American Idol wouldn't be American Idol if it didn't have some obligatory plug for a movie coming soon to a theater near you. Out comes Austin Powers, ah, I mean the Love Guru. Gag.

It was an interesting mix of singers that they had come on the show and sing with the contestants throughout the night. It was kinda weird. The show seemed to be timeline of pop music history - it got progressively younger as the show went on.

Which brings me to the Jonas Brothers. I knew who they were and that they are beloved by young children everywhere but I had never seen them perform before. Angelo put it best when he said, "They're Hanson - part deux." MmmBop for sure. Only shinier. They are cute though, like puppies.

Jordin Sparks is also a cute girl but holy cow, who is dressing her??? Did anyone else immediately think, "Oh my, it's Josey Grossey!" I felt bad. Hasn't anyone learned from the 80s? So I have to admit that one of my favorite parts of the whole show was Shiny Man! ...he got to perform with the USC marching band - hilarious. This kid had totally cracked me up during the audition shows. He's a classic. "I am your brother, your best friend forever, singing the songs, the music that you love-ohhhhh!" Come on that's a catchy tune. I thought it should have been the final winner's song. I enjoy torturing Angelo with that one because it gets stuck in your head for hours. I only have one thing to say about the whole Gladys Knight and the Pips thing - Gladys Knight isn't dead! She's just mormon. I didn't get it, but Robert Downey Jr. is hot.

Then it was Carrie Underwood's turn to validate the show. She is really pretty. I didn't really understand her song about a drunken wedding because the whole time she was singing I was concerned about her safety. With those connected sleeves I was sure she was going to get her heel caught and topple over. Despite that worry I did notice what nice legs she has...dang, I want you think you can order a pair of those on Amazon?
Then came the George Michael tribute. He's not dead either. He didn't look good though. He looked old and creepy...and his song? ...and Paula crying during the song? I didn't get it. George, the sun is setting and not just on the jumbo screen behind you.

All in all I was entertained. I was really happy that David Cook won. He's been my favorite all season since he did a cool 80s cover during the top 24 shows. (Ok so 80s music - good, 80s fashion - bad.) His Billy Jean was really good too. I'm sad he didn't get to sing it again at the finale. The judges were pretty well behaved throughout the show but Paula couldn't just sit and look pretty. She left us with some final words to ponder, "You two are truly amazing. It's odd that it's called the finale when it's anything but the final — it's the beginning of the start of the destinies of your career. I'm so proud. And just remember sometimes you think it's all about winning but it's the things sometimes that we lose that remind us of how truly special we are as people." So here's to losing! (I guess.) Good thing we have 6 months to think that one over.

Monday, May 19, 2008

All that's left...

Well, this is it. Poof! and this is all that's left of Sybil. That of course is an over flowing pencil sharpener. Boy, how that woman loved her pencil.
How I'll miss the constant ZzzzZZZzzzZzzzZZZzzzzz coming from the mailroom on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays. To be honest I had never had to clean out our pencil sharpener before. Heck, before Sybil I had forgotten entirely that we even had an automatic pencil sharpener. So when I discovered the above after Sybil left for the last time I had to take a moment. As the sun sets on another semester all I will have is the memories. Keep your fingers crossed that we'll get another entertaining intern this summer. I'm keeping my fingers crossed for the overzealous ex-military kid that has shown up at our office 3 times in one week asking about our intern program.

Up yours!

Last week was a very special week. Angelo got to get a colonoscopy on Tuesday! Yippee for him! For those of you who may be wondering what that is, it's when a doctor (hopefully a qualified one) shoves a giant hose with a camera on it up your rear to inspect your colon and intestines. Angelo is a very lucky man, this was his sixth one! He's a pro now. Angelo has ulcerative colitis which basically means his intestines are very angry and irritable and don't like anything around for very long. You know that song that goes, "when your sliding into first and you feel something burst! Diarrhea! Diarrhea!" Well, that's like Angelo's theme song. If you are ever wondering where a bathroom is just ask Angelo because he will have already scoped out the place for one. Because of his condition he has to get a camera tour every couple of years to make sure he doesn't have cancer. This year went well. The hardest part according to him is the "cleansing process" which began with a fast on Sunday starting at midnight. All day Monday all he could eat was beef broth and non-red jello. On Monday evening the real fun began. That's when he got to take some pills which began the free flow of anything that was left in his system. This process includes lots of "get outta my way" moments. It is also an excellent time for him to catch up on any reading because he basically gets to sit on his "special throne" for hours. Once we got the hospital on Tuesday morning things went pretty smoothly. It is always kinda funny because he is always the youngest person by decades in endoscopy so the nurses always like him. After they got him situated and his IV put in they wheeled him to his procedure room. I got to stand there with him and they began to sedate him and it was quit amusing. At first the sedation medicine didn't really do anything for him and so the nurse gave him another round. He didn't seem that affected still so she left to go get some more. As soon as she left the room Angelo face got real relaxed and then his eyes got really heavy and soon his mouth gaped open. When the nurse returned I laughed and said I think that last one worked. Soon after that I left for the waiting room and then they called me in after he was done. It's always kind of amusing when I go back in to see him cause he's still and drugged up and when Angelo is like that he just rambles on about weird stuff. After he woke up fully we were able to go. He was told to not operate machinery or sign legal papers that day. That was disappointing because we were so looking forward to taking a ride in our forklift.

Saturday, May 17, 2008

Happy Birthday Galen!

We hope you had a great Birthday Galen! This picture just about sums up my nephew Galen...(It's one of my favorites. It's from his baptism too which makes it all the more funny.)
Doesn't he look like Calvin from Calvin and Hobbes? We thought so too so Angelo made this...
Galen is a sweet guy and a cool kid. He just turned 11 and loves sports and skateboarding. He recently had a skateboarding wreck and isn't going to be back on the board for a while. Watch that head, dude - you only get one brain! We love you and we miss you, ya crazy kid!