Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Adam and Mom's visit - Pt. 2 - The Epic Battle

I still have no idea how this wrestling match started, but it lasted a good 15 minutes.

(notice the Go-Gurt and frozen can of Orange juice. The fight started while they were in the freezer, apparently.)

...Moroni was very worried.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Adam and Mom's visit - Pt. 1 - Thanksgiving w/ the Sr. Missionaries

On November 21st my mom flew in to visit us here in Germany. A few days later, on the 26th, Donald's best friend Adam arrived.
The following day was Thanksgiving, and dinner with the missionaries was only the beginning of our adventures!!

Saturday, November 8, 2008

Critters in the Hood

Twenty minutes ago we received a knock on our door from a woman we go to church with. Apparently she's had an odd smell in her car for the last several days, and traced the scent to the hood of her car... and found today that it was, to her worst suspicions, a dead animal. She doesn't "do" dead animals(and either would I!), she told Donald, and with her husband being in Iraq she desperately needed help extracting him from the top of her engine. We stood several feet away while Donald did the dirty work. The whole process took under 2 minutes, and it was absolutely hilarious.
Gross as it seems, it was definitely the highlight of my weekend.

Oh, and Donald deemed the creature to be chipmunk. Or maybe a squirrel? It was hard to tell, I guess, and I certainly wasn't going anywhere near the thing to make a positive ID on the species.

RIP, Mr. fluffy rodent thing.

Friday, November 7, 2008

Spider in the Cupboard!

The storage in our kitchen is limited, to say the least. The designers of our military housing unit managed to make some the most awkward kitchen space I've ever encountered. One such storage nook is directly to the left of our dishwasher. I'll spare you the confusing verbal mapping, but suffice it so say that we have one very LARGE storage area that extends along/behind the dishwasher and has one very small cabinet door as an opening. What results is a complete lack or organization and me just throwing objects back in there, and then blindly groping around for what I need by feel.

Yesterday afternoon I needed the ceramic bowl/insert for our slow-cooker, so I could pop in a pot roast. After a full minute of groping, tugging, and maneuvering with my hand gripping the inside of our HUGE slow-cooker dish, I was able to pull it out and swing it up onto the counter.

What I found (pictured above... with hand at spider-level to illustrate just how GINORMOUS THE STINKER WAS) made me scream. Loudly. A lot. I quickly grabbed the lid and slammed it on top.

I still can't figure out what scared me more... the spider itself, or knowing that my hand was shoved inside that dish right next to it, recklessly fl0pping about, just asking to be bitten. I very well could have TOUCHED that beast and not have known it. Terrifying, right?
I left it in there until Donald came home from work several hours later, at which point he bravely took it outside and dumped it into the grass (and, against my very loud and adamant wishes, he did NOT step on, and grind it to bits)

I cooked the pot roast in the oven that night.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

He's Home He's Home He's Home!!

Okay, so he's actually been back for 11 days, but a lot has happened between then and now... so it definitely still feels like I just picked him up!

The ceremony was held at midnight on the 26th, and as of 2am-ish Sunday morning, he was back home!

...more pictures to follow!

Saturday, November 1, 2008


Our first holiday back together was fantastic!

He, true to character, went as a devil. I was his fallen angel. Not creepy at all, I know... but we sure looked cute, right?

With so many people having only been in town for a few days, all plans were very last minute. Ultimately, we ended up having a casual BBQ at our house. A handful of people came over with their kids and we stuffed our faces while playing Rock Band.

Thursday, October 23, 2008

My Puppy and My Blankie

What, at the age of 22, helped me last 15 months alone in a foreign country?

My dog, and my blankie.

Yes, a blankie. A flannel baby quilt, made by my grandparents when I was little. Every night it's there with me. You must know, though, that this isn't "the" blankie I carried around as a toddler. No, anyone who knew me up through my teenage years is probably familiar with my original "purple blankie" I used to tote everywhere. That blanket, unfortunately, was accidently sent to the goodwill by a friend's mom when I was 17. It was falling apart long before its' untimely demise, though, and I still carry two small scraps of flannel, inside my scripture case, that had fallen off of it shortly before it disappeared. As much as I miss it, the blanket I've used since then has served as a worthy replacement. Yes, at the age of 17 I couldn't come to terms with life without a blankie. I didn't cope and move on as most nearly-adults would. Instead, I found a suitable replacement. Both were made by my grandparents, both having been broken in by years of wear, tear, and filth by yours truly.

From an early age I compromised with myself about when I'd give up the blankie. Jr High, I decided, would be my coming of age. When I turned 12, though, I decided that High School was a more appropriate time to cut the habbit cold turkey. High School turned into graduation, and from there I decided Marriage was a good time to give her up. After all, who would want to share a bed with a dingy piece of flannel between he and his wife? Granted, he may tease me from time to time, but Donald hasn't made me give her up.

I also told myself I'd never be the sort of person who'd talk to their dog in full sentences. And yet, here I am. Moroni knows my deepest secrets, and his big, mischievous brown eyes have never failed to comfort me during my long-winded complaints and tears.

Without my blankie and my 110 pound lap-dog, the Boogie Man surely would have gotten me by now. I'm grateful for them both.

And I don't plan on giving either up any time soon.

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

The Curb Trick - Iraq

Donald's a riot.

Check out this video of him in Iraq, from several months ago:


Friday, September 26, 2008


Oh snap! I got tagged!
8 things I am passionate about:

1. Donald
2. The restored gospel of Jesus Christ
3. My family
4. Preparing to be a mom
5. Traveling
6. My dog, Moroni
7. Children's fashion. I know... I know. A weird passion.
8. Shopping. Heeecks yes.

8 words or phrases I say often:
1. "...I miss you"
2. "Oh my goodness!"
3. "drop it! DRRRROOOOP ITT!!!!" (the dog)
4. "I love you to the moon and back"
5. "I took it into the shops and was like, hey, can you turn this into a catbus? So they did."
6. "Heeeeyyyy"
7. "Honestly,"
8. "Seriously,"

8 things I want to do before I die:
1. Stop gossiping altogether... as in - NEVER.
2. Go to India.
3. To be a mom, and excel at it.
4. Go visiting teaching, lol.
5. Parachuting.
6. Learn to play the piano.
7. Master my spending habits... have a house fully paid off, at least one rental/investment property, and my children's education taken care of by the age of 40, and be able to fully retire by age 50.
8. Have housekeeping come naturally to me.

8 things I have learned from the past:
1. It could ALWAYS be worse.
2. Hating someone who has wronged you doesn't hurt them, it hurts you. Forgiveness is freedom. (carried over from Juli)
3. You do the crime, you pay the time.
4. There is absolute truth. There is right and wrong. There ARE sides, and I must choose where I stand.
5. Happiness is a choice, which at times requires effort.
6. Love is an action.
7. When we are faithful, the Lord is bound by His word. BOUND.
8. Dress like an onion. You can always strip, but freezing your butt off isn't easily reversed.

8 places I would love to go or see:
1. India
2. Africa
3. Texas
4. Italy (going this winter! yay!)
5. New York City
6. Nauvoo
7. The Arctic!
8. Ireland

8 things I currently need or want:
1. Donald. Seriously. Only a month-ish left...
2. My own house. Not rented, leased, or "assigned" to me. I want my own home that I own and can feel comfortable in.
3. The Tales of Beetle and Bard - special edition :-)
4. My dog to be well behaved!!!
5. Furniture! I want to go shopping at MOR, Pottery Barn, and Target SO badly!
6. The war to be over. I'm not anti-war... but I won't lie, an end would be nice.
7. To clean the upstairs of my house. It looks like a bomb went off.
8. Clothes. Tops, to be specific. A girl can never have too many.

8 people who have influenced my life:
1. Donald - He has inspired me to be the best person I can be. He gives me the unabashed honesty I need to succeed in life. Few people could handle this firecracker like he does.
2. My mom - She's one of the most selfless people I've ever known. Her strictness formed my character, and has given me the integrity and strong moral compass that guides my life. She taught me right from wrong like few people could.
3. Heidi - Work ethic, reality, THE GOSPEL, organization, parenting, practicality, endurance, family relationships, tradition, reliability, and how to life life the right way. I would be a complete loser without her. No person has ever had to exorcise more patience and tolerance with me than that woman has. She helped me to see who I wanted to be, and taught me how to get there. She really unlocked the door to the amazing life I have today.
4. Ron- Never has there been a better example of spirituality and wisdom in my life than from Ron. I trust his advice and guidance above all others. Having him as a father figure during my high school years really helped form the person I am today. I can think of NO other person who's words I would take to heart more than his.
5. My History teacher, Ms. Weberg. We didn't have a notable relationship, but she was "that teacher" for me. She memorized every students name and everything short of their life story. She had the ability to make a diverse classroom feel like a family. How she accomplished the things she did is beyond me.
6. A girl I went to church with. She'll remain nameless. We were never close, but she had an impact on me. A huge one. I haven't spoken to her in years, but she taught me so much in the short amount of time I knew her. Like I said though, we hardly scratched the surface of friendship. Most of what I learned from her was done from afar.
...never underestimate what a huge influence you can be upon those around you - often the ones you least expect.
6. My Grandma - She gave me a strong appreciation for homemaking. Between her cooking and sewing abilities, she was a huge inspiration to me. I used to visit her for months at a time, and I always looked forward to those extended stays. She was a refuge. She just passed away this summer, and I wish I had been closer with her during her last years. It's been two months, and her death hasn't sunken in yet. I'm going to miss her when it does.
7. My Grandpa - He passed away when I was twelve, and to this day I still idolize him. I never saw him do anything heroic or showy; in fact, he was feeble and ill during the entire time I knew him. Growing up without a father, he was it for me. I have no idea what he did to make me love him so much, but that man had a spell cast over me. Still does.
8. My friend Pam. She stood by, and encouraged me, through some of the most difficult, yet wisest, decisions of my life. She was there when I met Donald, and I might not
have met him had it not been for her. She has cried on me and let me do the same in return. Had it not been for her friendship, I may have fallen down an ugly path in life. We share morals, standards, and beliefs together... and I can be my truest true self around her - nobody other than Donald has unlocked that door.

** Juli added me as a "9th" influence, and I'm going to do the same.
Fate brought us together, no doubt. There's no other way to explain our freakish friendship. She has absolutely been my sanity this last year. Whenever I get lonely, I can sign onto messenger and count on her to be there for me. We have all the same weaknesses and the same sarcastic outlook. If I want to laugh, all I need to do is talk to Juli. Nothing exciting happens in my life without being rehashed to her within a mere hours. Between her and Catbus, a girl couldn't ask for more.

I'm supposed to "tag" 8 people. Um.
I tag Pam.
Beyond that... well, I'm sending out an open-ended tag.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

My Sleepy Soldier

My husband is amazing. He's been in Iraq for 14 months now. I don't hear from him as often as I'd like, but that's what I married into and I can't complain much. He gets online once or twice (sometimes 3 or 4, if I'm lucky!) times a week, usually for about 30 minutes at a time. Phone calls are out, so our online time is all we have.

Well, he's working a job right now that's taken him away from his usual location. There, he has INTERNET IN HIS ROOM - wireless - on his laptop! He got online last night a bit after 9pm, and after having a long, long, long day... he gets online to talk with me. He ended up falling asleep at the keys within about 40 minutes. Literally. I wouldn't hear from him for several minutes, only to receive a "I love you. What? I'm sorry. I fell asleep... I love you." This pattern went on for nearly an hour. Every time I'd PM him, the chime would wake him up, and he'd try his best to respond.

The conversation was going nowhere, really. Finally, after about 10 minutes of silence, I decided to let him sleep. I stayed online for another hour or two, and watched his status go from "available" to "idle".

Of all the silly things in the world that could have made my day - THIS was it. It was as if I had physically watched him fall asleep. Just being able to share something as mundane with him as falling asleep...

it was the highlight of my week.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

I've Crossed Over!

My ever faithful laptop, a mere 18 months old, took it's last breath recently. Having held vigil day and night, 24/7, ever waiting for the possibility of Donald getting online, my Toshiba Satellite pulled her own weight. Three chargers and two new batteries later, though, her life-source was faltering. To say she took her "last breath" is a bit dramatic, actually. The computer itself; the operating system and such; is still alive and kickin', and in perfect working order. It's the port where the charger plugs in that's toast. So basically, it won't charge. It's dead. A perfectly good computer... DOA.

Being here in Germany, my options for repair are limited. As soon as we move back Stateside, getting it fixed will be at the top of my agenda. Two G's down the drain would be a waste, so I'm saving her for brighter days.

Until then, though, I needed a trusty replacement.
A desktop, though, I decided.

So what did I rush out and get? Well, having never actually USED a Macintosh (Okay, maybe once. In high school. On my friend's dad's computer. For 20 minutes) of course I did the smart thing and got one. An iMac, to be specific. I did so based entirely on personal recommendations, rave reviews, and... hype.

It was a great decision. I've had it for two weeks. Now that the 15-day return policy is up, it's officially official. I love my iMac, and I don't foresee myself going PC again anytime soon.

Sunday, September 14, 2008

God Works Through The Weak

I received the following in a forwarded email years ago. Just felt like sharing:

The next time you feel like GOD can't use you, just remember... 

Noah was a drunk 

Abraham was too old 

Isaac was a daydreamer 

Jacob was a liar 

Leah was ugly 

Joseph was abused 

Moses had a stuttering problem 

Gideon was afraid 

Samson had long hair and was a womanizer 

Rahab was a prostitute 

Jeremiah and Timothy were too young 

David had an affair and was a murderer 

Elijah was suicidal 

Isaiah preached naked 

Jonah ran from God 

Naomi was a widow 

Job went bankrupt 

Peter denied Christ 

The Disciples fell asleep while praying 

Martha worried about everything 

The Samaritan woman was divorced, more than once 

Zaccheus was too small 

Paul was too religious 

Timothy had an ulcer..AND 

Lazarus was dead! 

Friday, February 8, 2008

Professor Dingbat

This was not a happy blog. Lots of angry bunnies went into this.


I have a lot of problems with my dingbat American Government professor, one of which I find impossible to tolerate. Sure, the man never covers coursework during class, instead deciding to use his paid time to spew hate on all things conservative or traditional, while justifying our wasted time by informing us that we have a textbook for a reason, and to read it if we hope to pass the exams... because he sure the hell isn't covering the coursework. Annoying as THAT is, it's not my pressing complaint. That'd be too simple and expected. No, I have a pretty high tolerance for people like him who spew political hate, surprisingly.

My beef is this:

The man makes a mockery of higher powers and religion, organized or otherwise, every chance he can get. He's not simply critical as so many people are, he's outright HOSTILE. To make it that much more unbearable, he does impressions of made-up ministers, and his caricatures of them aren't even GOOD ones. The only area he comes close to touching is with his execution of a Southern accent. Otherwise, he's way out in left field. You'd think the man with all the degrees could at least get his effing doctrines straight.

When he said that Conservatives love religion because it helps to self-govern, he proved his point by saying Christian leaders use worse scare tactics to keep people in line than law enforcement can:

"You're thinking about crossing that line? You're considering being different... and not doing what we tell you to? Oh no... don't you worry; you don't have to worry about jail. Nah! And don't you worry 'bout no fines or trial... oh no... it's MUCH WORSE - if you cross that line you's gunna burn in HELL!"

I raised my hand and asked him exactly which denomination(s) he was talking about, as I had never known any REAL ministers to ever preach in that manner. What was his response?

"Well look at the PURITANS!"

I actually laughed out loud.

The Puritans?

Okay then, the Puritans it is. With their southern accents and all.

On another occasion he loosely related religious ideology to the supposed idea that Christians have a faulted idea that Jesus is a cure-all, by quoting some imaginary minister as saying the following:

"You say your wife left you? Well I'll tell you why - it's 'cause you ain't right wit Jesus! Your dog died?!? Well my friend... you ain't right with Jesus!! You lost your job... sure 'nough, you must not be right with Jesus!"

I asked him what denomination he was speaking of... because I certainly had never heard anything like THAT in my entire life.

"Oh, you know... those Baptist ministers and such..."

"I was raised Baptist. They don't talk anything like that, and nor does any other major protestant religion I know of."

"Well I was exaggerating a little to make a point..."

"Grossly exaggerating."

"Well my point was...."

"I get your point perfectly."

...I just don't think it should be at the expense of a religion's dignity.

Sunday, February 3, 2008

A New Day

I had a revelation recently. Not the sort with singing angels and clouds that rain down fire and brimstone, but a sudden realization that I was happy to finally receive.

I suppose I should probably blog about what that realization was, but where's the mystery in that?

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