Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Love Notes

While cleaning out my homegurl's dance bag, I found this love note.  I read it, of course, because we have a rule: If you leave it where I have to clean it, it's public domain.

When Hannah got home from babysitting I handed her the note and said, "I loved reading this note from Bridget; what a sweet friend."  Instead of getting mad at me for reading what I shouldn't have, she said, "I know, Bridget is my favorite, and I'm glad you found that note because I promised I would write her back."

Bridget's love note reminded me that Valentine's Day is only a few short weeks away.  You won't find me standing in line at Walmart the night before we have to pass out love notes to ninety of our closest school friends.  I've already bought Pop Rocks, and we're attaching the free love note I found here.

Monday, January 23, 2012


Did you know this famous gal is in my ward?  Well, she was sitting in front of me during sacrament meeting yesterday, and I reached over and did a little tap-tap on her shoulder and said, "I think I saw you in your garage painting a headboard bright yellow, or something like that; I wasn't stalking you."  I continued since she was still nodding and smiling, "I have a set of Henredon, Louis XV style furniture that needs to be refinished."  She smiled and said, in a very professional, strait-forward way, "My prices are not cheap, meaning I don't do a chest of drawers for 200 bucks."  I think she could smell a bargain hunter, so I quickly said, "Well I'm looking to preserve this furniture.  It was my great grandma's, and so well, yeah...I'm looking for quality, you know?"

I sounded like an idiot, so whatever.

This morning I sent her an e-mail with pictures of the set.  I will keep you posted on our progress. In the meantime, look at some of her cool furniture restoration projects.

Friday, January 20, 2012

Love You to the Moon and Back

I'm propping my eyes open with toothpicks due to the above pictured project.  Teachers should know that an at-home school assignment really becomes the parent or legal guardian's assignment; it's never entirely the work of the student (if at all).

We got our assignment over a week ago, and I went around the house saying things like: I promise I won't wait until the last night; I just won't do it.  I can't work under that kind of frantic pressure, and I've done it way too many times.  It will not happen again.  But life happens, and so does poor planning, so guess who was at the Walmart checkout at 10pm last night?

My hands look as if I'm wearing Michael Jackson's glitter gloves.  I've soaked them in water and even tried using the dish brush to scrap all the silver glitter and spray paint off.  Last night while I was sleeping, some of the glitter travelled from my hands and parked itself in my left eye.  Now I look like I've got pink eye.

The things we do to get through 5th grade.

P.S.  My littlest homie read the BOM to all of us while we were hanging stars.  We're catching up.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

Don't Be a Ploopy

OK, we've already missed three days of reading the BOM.  While driving home from school I said to my homies, "We're really messing things up.  We can't even keep our ONE resolution in tact.  Our one resolution!"  One of them piped-up, "We'll make it all up tonight!" I'm just sick about the possibility of us not completing the BOM.

That sick feeling may also stem from the fact that I said an inappropriate phrase at my stake meeting earlier today.  The women were a bit shocked, and I've been harping on myself about it all day.  I keep thinking, "Why did you have to say it?  Couldn't you have just said, 'We can't use that song because it has bad words?'"  "But, no!  You had to pollute the minds of such sweet sisters.  Who, other than a professional waxer or anatomy teacher, ever says such filth? And how did you even know those words were in that song, huh?  You're a perve to your core, and now all those ladies know it."

I think they'll release me this Sunday.  Pray for me.

Tuesday, January 17, 2012

Push, Grab, Go

Via Spiga boots 
Nordstrom's price: $398.00
I paid: $39.99

Tory Burch flats 
Nordstrom's price: $198.00
I paid: $59.99

Hudson skinny jeans 
Nordstrom's price: $158.00
I paid: $14.97

I'm a bargain hunter to my core, so I frequent Nordstrom's version of the Good Will: Last Chance.  If you live in Arizona and have never shopped the store, you're missing out on a free education on how to snag and drag the best deals. If you've visited Arizona and missed out on digging through the piles of this season's Nordstrom returns, it's time to pencil a trip into your next itinerary.  People come to Arizona just to shop at this store.

Here are three rules to help you survive the experience:

1.  Leave your manners and dignity at home.  This store is home to Arizona's most aggressive shoppers, so it's a survival of the shopping fittest experience: You push, you grab that pair of gold sparkly TOMS, and you go to the next rack before someone else grabs that Stella McCartney bag you've always wanted.  Just tuck away all the niceties your mama taught you and you'll fare well.

2.  Get there before it opens.  This is usually at 9:50 am, but they open earlier around the holidays.

3.  Have an objective.  If you need new jeans, locate the rack while standing outside the storefront, then immediately go to that rack.

4.  Don't get addicted to the shopping adrenalin rush. I see a handful of the same women every time I go; I think they're addicted to getting designer brands for next to nothing.  (Maybe it's me who has the problem since I've been there enough times to recognize the regulars?)

Yesterday, after digging and sorting through piles of gold, I selected the above pictured items.  I pushed through walls of people just to stand in a line longer than the length of a football field.  Saving hundreds of dollars on items I really needed made the trip worth it. But sometimes I'm better off just going to Nordstrom and purchasing what I need instead of joining ranks with Arizona's name brand bottom feeders. Or sometimes I'm better off just going without.

If you'd like more information about Last Chance, here's a link to yelp.  There are funny reviews (BEWARE OF A LITTLE SWEARING) and some good pictures.  You'll get a better idea of what you're getting yourself into.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

Candy-filled Apothecaries

courtesy of anders ruff
(Why doesn't my display look as cute as the above mentioned picture?)

 I have a neighbor who has three candy-filled apothecary jars sitting on her kitchen island.  They sit there year-round, displaying color coordinated candy suitable for any upcoming holiday.  Yesterday she asked me, "Have you seen any gumballs around?  I tried ordering from Lehi Valley Trading Company, but they only have green and peach, eew!"
I haven't seen any, maybe try Sprouts?" I said.
We'll yesterday, while I was shopping for some Puma socks, I found some gumballs.  Guess where?  TJ Maxx's Home Goods store.  You can also find them in bulk at the Candy Warehouse, but I have not looked at Sprouts, yet.  Do they have them?  Wait, I just called them, and Angel said they never carry gumballs, but they have other Valentine's Day candy in. Good to know.  Anyhoo,
I bought the gumballs at TJ Maxx and brought them to my friend's house.  Then I told her, "Every time I see gumballs I think about my high school friend, Kendall.  When we used to sit and eat our lunches, she would always pull out a can of Diet Sprite.  I would say, "Is that all you brought for lunch?' and she'd say, 'Yeah.  This and a baggie of gumballs.'
"She had an eating-disorder, I'm pretty sure," I concluded.  
Then my friend said, "Maybe I should try that!"  "Maybe not!" I said, then we both laughed.  

Look here for additional Valentine's Day apothecary ideas.

Monday, January 9, 2012

Birthday Bliss

My homegurl spent the last three days soaking in her birthday celebration.

On Friday, I brought homemade cake balls to her school.  

On Saturday morning we went to the temple and did some family names, a tradition mi madre started when my homegurl turned twelve. 
Then we met Kristie at the MAC Counter, and she did Hannah's makeup and told us all about this amazing mascara, Haute and Naughty. It really is the best, despite its trashy name.

Then she got all gussied-up and our friend, Jill, took her pictures.

Another wardrobe change, and we were on our way to meet her dad at his office.  This is her posing while waiting for him to come out.  The two of them went to Vincent's and had creme brulee.
He gave her this necklace.
On Sunday, her actual birthday, we had cake. Somebody forgot the candles, so she only had three to blow-out. 
the end

Friday, January 6, 2012

Ballet Girl

Here are her pictures so far.  Since I don't know a thing about ballet, we had to have her teacher and the studio photographer pose her.

We've scratched Houston Ballet off our list.  Tonight, Emma told us she left their last year's audition in tears.  She said "It was really hard, and I made every audition except for theirs." 
We don't need that kind of performance stress in our lives, so we dumped that audish.  

I keep saying "we" because I kind of feel like I'm auditioning, too.  You might find me standing on the observation deck window doing the moves right along with the girls who are trying-out.  J/K, sort of. Seriously, stop the vicarious living.  Therapy.

Thursday, January 5, 2012

Twirl 'Til You Make It

It's the time of year when ballet dancers begin auditioning for summer intensives--a must for aspiring ballerinas.  My homgurl's first audition is next week, and she's hoping to spend a month dancing in one of the following programs: Houston Ballet, Ballet West, Maple Conservatory, Washington Ballet, or Pacific Northwest.  We're saving School of American Ballet for next year, when she has a bit of experience under her leotard.

One of the requirements at every audition is that you have a head shot and a pose in first arabesque.  She's been practicing her poses in front of the mirror, and this Saturday our good friend Jill will be taking her pictures.  We can't wait.  Here's a video of an up-and-coming ballet dancer.  Don't you love her?

Here's a blog filled with useful summer intensive information, just in case you'll be auditioning too.

Monday, January 2, 2012


Our New Year's goal is to read the BOM as a family by December 31, 2012.

At our neighborhood New Year's Eve party, my neighbor asked, "Are you prepared for the Second Coming?"  I replied, "I'm pretty sure I'll be torched."  He chuckled, but then turned in closer and repeated the question in all seriousness.  I thought to myself, this is getting kind of weird, but for  some sick and twisted reason I'm going to entertain his question, as if it's any of his beeswax if I'm prepared or not.
     I said, "I don't think about it much. I have close to six months' worth of food stored and 72 hour kits for each of my family members.  But heaven knows there will be a major catastrophe and we won't be able to carry the food with us and we'll all starve and go Donner Party on each other."
     He continued, unphased by my last comment, "Don't you ever read Revelations?  Do you wonder about the moon turning to blood and the stars falling from the sky?  Like, do you want to know what all that means?"
     "No," I said, "those metaphors are for the Lord to know and for me to not think about, because when I start thinking too much about them, I become dysfunctional."  (He is obviously unaware of my tendency toward pandemonium any time I hear or discuss forthcoming gloom and doom.)
     "Well, they mean the earth will be knocked off its axis.  Did you know that?"  "No, and that's kind of scary to think about," I said. And then I turned my back and lit my sparkler. Totally awkward, right?

But then I decided I'd better read the Book of Mormon, again, and brush-up on my scriptural knowledge base.  I found this daily schedule that's manageable for a family filled with kids of varying ages.  If you're interested in reading the BOM this year too, here's the link.

P.S.  I do not take the signs of the Second Coming lightly, however, when someone asks me such personal questions, I will respond with ridiculous answers.