Tuesday, February 28, 2012

I Won't Talk! I Won't Say a Word!

I love the Oscars. It's a fantastic excuse to get dressed up and eat great food and get together with people who also like to get dressed up and eat good food and pretend that movie awards are important.

I run into the same problem every year: It's not just that I haven't seen most of the nominated movies, it's that I can't see them because they are rated R (and it's against my personal standards to watch rated R movies). This year I ran into that problem compounded with another problem: ever since Ash was born, I just don't go to the movies. It might also have something to do with the fact that I no longer live next to a dollar theater.  In any case, out of the nine film nominated for best picture, I had seen one. Out of every single movie that was up for any kind of Oscar, I had seen four: two of which were Rango and Kung Fu Panda 2. But I have read the books The Help and Hugo

But, as with every year, I wasn't going to let that stop me! I watched the trailers for all the movies! I even looked up the trailers for the documentaries so I wouldn't be guessing blindly in that category this year.

Jenny and I planned a party, sent out an evite, and filled out our Oscar ballots. We even made food to represent each movie nominated for best picture:


The Tree of Life

Fresh Strawberry and whipped cream Fruit Fool:
War Horse

Jelly-filled shortbread cookies:
The Artist

Apple cranberry crepes with cream cheese filling and fresh whipped cream on top:
 Midnight in Paris

Fresh sliced pineapple and mango:
 The Descendants

Mini hot dogs 

We also had chocolate cream pie for The Help, New York Style mini-pizzas for Extremely Loud & Incredibly Close, French Bread with jam and Brie for Hugo and, as an extra omage to the movie that would win "Best Animated Film," water for Rango

Saturday, February 25, 2012

I Don't Know. Maybe Just for Once, I'd Like to Go to a Movie Where I Don't Get Seasick

Before the cruise, I hadn't spent much time on a boat. Sure, I'd been on a canoe, and we own a kayak so I have done that. I've been on a motor boat once or twice when I was little, but not for very long and I don't remember much.

I was a little anxious about seasickness so I took some ginger gum with me on the cruise despite assurances that "cruise boats are so big you can hardly tell you're on the water."

The above assurances are one hundred percent false. From the time we left dock, nothing was more apparent than the fact that I wasn't on stable ground. I could feel the waves.The movement was big enough to make you grab on to something, to stumble as you walked and to get tinges of nausea every now and then. I was so glad I brought my ginger gum. I did adjust quickly, however, once I realized that everything was normal, the waves weren't bigger that usual and we weren't going to capsize. I actually really liked the feeling. It was like being on a mild roller coaster all the time or trying to walk on a moving school bus, all things I love.

As surprising as that was, the real surprise came the moment we got off the boat at the end of the cruise.

"Are we on a dock?" I asked aloud, wondering why the ground was still rolling underneath me. We were not. But for the next forty eight hours it sure felt like it. Not only that, but I was very dizzy, I had a terrible headache and I was very nauseousness. Apparently my sea legs had adapted quickly to the boat, but my land legs could not adjust to the shore.

Up to a week later, I still dreamed I was on the boat being rocked so sleep by the waves. It took a few minutes after I woke up for that movement to vanish.

My conclusion is thus: It's the sea calling to me. My home is meant to be a boat. Now I only have to convince Drek...

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

I just got a call from our ward's Sunday School president. He asked me to switch the class I teach. Guess which class I'm teaching now...

Saturday, February 18, 2012

I Don't Know About You, but I intend to Write a Strongly Worded Letter to the White Star Line About All of This

Last January Drek and I switched to the cash and envelope system of budgeting. My incentive for sticking to our budget was that every time I went under, the extra money was put into our cruise fund envelope/savings account.

Well, it worked. I did a fabulous (If I say so myself) job of sticking to the budget and I saved us up enough money to go on a cruise! Actually, to my delight, cruises aren't actually that expensive. It's the airfare to get you there and the alcohol on the cruise that really adds up. Luckily, I was saved from both those pesky expenses so  Drek and I booked a five day cruise over Valentine's Day.

We had a fantastic time. I have hundreds of pictures and dozens of stories but they can all be summed up by saying it was great. We spent Valentine's Day on Lover's Beach, I got to go snorkeling, we played a lot of games and ate a lot of food. Drek drove a motor boat, I got stung by a jellyfish and we're both happy to be home again.

Now I can save up for our next adventure.

I did want to add a few tips for those who are planning to go on a cruise, and for the next cruise I go on:

Tip one: Bring a water bottle. No, really. They cost $3.75 on the ship and you have to tip the person selling it to you. You can try to just drink water at mealtimes, like I did the firt few days, but thy can't give you water with no ice, the cups are tiny and with all that food you should be drinking A LOT of water.

Tip two: Bring a comfy jacket. Yes, it's nice and warm on the equator, but there are plenty of cold winds on the ocean.

Tip three: Bring a small backpack. Pack your suitcase/duffelbag, then pack a small backpack with a book, your waterbottle, and a deck of cards. Check your bags but keep your backpack. Even if you hate checking bags on airplanes, cruise ships are different. Check your bags, it will be okay. Also, take your backpack with your waterbottle on any shore excursions.

Sunday, February 05, 2012

Technology. That's always Been Your Achilles Heel in this Part of the World

I was talking on the phone with an older gentlemen. He needed to send me a document so I spelled out my email address:

Me: "E-M-A-I-L at gmail dot com."

Him: "E-M-A-I-L-X?" 

Me: "No, E-M-A-I-L at gmail..." 

Him interrupting me: "L at?" 

Me: "Yes. At."

Him (No response)

Me: As in, the at symbol." 

Him: (Pausing) "...the what symbol?" 

Later, he said he would attach a document to an email. When I got the email it said: Sorry, I couldn't figure out how to attach the document. Can I fax it to you? But he had, actually, attached the file. 

A few days ago my neighbor asked me what a browser was. I was taken completely aback. 

"You mean you don't know? I thought everyone knew. It's imprinted knowledge human babies are born with, like holding their breath underwater."

I've been so amused by the whole ordeal. I find it so odd to realize that such terms haven't really been around that long. 

Friday, February 03, 2012

It's About to Get Very Cold in Here

Happy Day After Ground Hog Day! So, the groundhog saw it's shadow and we will be having six more weeks of the winter. Does it make that much of a difference if you live here in Sunland, where you only know it's winter when you are indoors and when you are outside you think it's a perfect day in June?

Here in Sunland I've noticed the houses here are built to stay cool, have terrible insulation and most people hate paying any sort of heating bill in the winter. All this adds up to a simple fact: in the wintertime, Sunlandians put on their jackets while they are indoors and take them off when they go outside. 

Today it is fifty eight degrees inside our house and seventy degrees outside. Today during Ash's nap I took off my hoodie, blanket and wool socks and went outside to read in the sun, where I was perfectly comfortable in shorts, a short sleeve shirt and bare feet. 

I'm not thrilled about six more weeks of cold indoors, but if I get ever get too cold, I can always go outside. 

Wednesday, February 01, 2012

There Was a Complication When We Cured the Industrial Disease. The Vaccine had an Unintended Side Effect: Sterility. Only One More Generation of our Species Could Survive

I wish I had videotaped Ash last night. Especially the dance. Oh, the dance. Alas, I did not, so I'll attempt to describe it.

Drek and I took Ash into the doctor yesterday to get her first ever vaccinations. I waited until my child turned two before giving her vaccinations because, obviously, I've been worried that she will have an adverse reaction to them.

She got her shots around three in the afternoon. By six, I was wondering if I was seeing a reaction:

(Ash is sitting on my stomach. She bounces hard, then hits me in the face)
Me: Ow! Don't hit mommy!
Ash: (laughing) Sorry, mommy.  (She bounces again and hits me in the face)
Me: Ow! Ash!
Ash: (laughing) Sorry, mommy. (She hits me again)  Sorry, mommy.
I grab her hand as she goes to hit me again and lift her off my stomach. She runs over to her bed, laughing and doing a crazy-dance, then gets up on her bed and starts jumping.
Ash: One two fwee fow five six seven eight nine ten yeven twelve firteen firteen firteen firteen...
Drek: Did you get stuck on thirteen?
Ash: (Still jumping) FIVE! five five five five five five. (Now she starts doing hand motions and bobbing her head side to side as she jumps) Open and shut them open and shut them open and shut them open and shut them.
Me: Wow, okay, I think it's time for bed.
Ash: NO BED! DANCE! No mommy bed! Yes mommy bed, mommy sweep. Yes, no, yes mommy sweep.  Ash DANCE! (she jumps off the bed onto the floor and does the CRAZIEST dance I have ever seen. And she just keeps going.)  A B C D E F G H I J K M N O P M N P M N O P M N O P. (I stand up and walk toward her)
Ash: (all in one breath) NO! No sweep. No! Yes no yes no. Yes mommy bed. Yes mommy bed, mommy sweep. Yes no yes mommy sweep. Finger hurt! Daddy, finger hurt! Bandaid! Mommy sweep, daddy bandaid finger.

She finally fell asleep and hour passed her normal bedtime, leaving me with the question: "What the heck was that?!"