Friday, July 31, 2009

Friday Finds: A Link Round-up

The Official Simon's Cat Website.  If any of you own or have owned a cat, you'll appreciate the humor.  And if you've never had the joy of owning your very own kitten, you'll see what you're missing!

Freezing Food A to Z, A Thrifty Mom.  This is an AWESOME list! It's good to know the right ways to freeze foods so that when you use them later they won't be disappointing!

Beyond the BabySteps: Legumes, Let's Talk about Beans, Food Storage Made Easy.  I have always wondered about how to prepare beans and how to use them everyday!  It looks like you could put them in anything and nobody would notice!

Oh, and here's the latest shot of my baby... :)

Evidently she has some fuzzy hair and HUGE cheeks!

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Way Back When Wednesday - Molecular Models and Safety Goggles

Taking a break from Korea stories, this Way Back When Wednesday comes from way back in my high school chemistry class.

I took my one and only Chemistry class during my sophomore year in high school.  Honestly, I hated the class.  The subject just didn't make any sense to me; I couldn't visualize it, and that's big for me.  But fortunately, I had an excellent teacher and my best friend, Cortney, was in the class with me, too.  We probably had too much fun in that class.

My least favorite part--or one of my least favorite parts--of Chemistry class was wearing the big safety goggles.  You know, the plastic ones with sharp-ish edges and the nasty elastic band around the back?  Yeah, those ones.  I hated them because they always left deep, red marks on my face, and I was paranoid that the elastic would leave a big dent in my hair.  My hair is curly and flattens easily so it was a valid concern.

I would follow the rules and put the goggles on for the labs, but I would remove them as soon as I could.  I'd also step back, take them off, and check my hair and face periodically if the lab went for the whole hour.

One day, our teacher announced that we'd be doing another lab in class BUT we wouldn't have to wear goggles because we were working with molecular model kits.  We probably wouldn't be needing the goggles because there was little to no risk of getting something in our eyes.  Hooray!  I had no idea what a molecular model was, and I don't remember getting much out of it, but I was happy to not be wearing the goggles.

So Cortney and I paired up as lab partners to work on our models.  It must not have taken us very long because I mostly remember making other kinds of models out of the kits.  And we were having fun!  At one point, Cortney made a horse and was attempting to show me it's realistic movements by bouncing it up and down when all of a sudden a part of it came flying off and hit me square in the forehead!

It didn't hurt very much but we were both so surprised and we got the giggles... majorly!  But we held it together enough that the whole situation wouldn't have been noticeable had we not been sitting in the front row!  So of course our teacher saw what happened, but she just laughed and made some funny comment about how maybe not all of the students could get by without wearing goggles.

Images courtesy of Home Depot and Peter Murray-Rust via

Tuesday, July 28, 2009

Top Ten Tuesday - Favorite Games

This week will be quick and easy, but fun!  This week's top ten in no particular order is...

My Favorite Games
  1. Yahtzee Free For All.  Much more fun than regular Yahtzee.  There are cards (with the regular Yahtzee combinations) and chips for you to go for, and you can steal your opponents' cards too!

  2. Carcassonne.  A great tile laying game.  Derek and I love to play this one, but have had some trouble finding others who love it just as much as we do.  I think it might because there are a million pieces and it's really complicated at first.   Maybe someday...

  3. Blokus Duo.  I've played regular Blokus and got really confused with the size of the board and number of different colors in the game.  Blokus Duo only has two players--and therefore two colors--and a cute mini board.  It's fun and relatively quick.

  4. 5 Crown, Sets and Runs, Mormon Bridge...  These are all games that we play with Rook cards which makes it easier.  Bring one set of cards and you've got three or more games! (Note to reader: the link for Mormon Bridge goes to a page on Wikipedia with some profanity.  Evidently most people have given this game some colorful names!  But the instructions and rule variations are excellent.  Just don't scroll down to "alternative names."  You'll be sorry!)

  5. Othello.  I stink at this game... unless I'm playing the computer on it's least intelligent mode.  Then I kick butt!

  6. Alchemy.  This is one of those solo, wasting-time-on-the-computer games.  I love it!

  7. Backgammon.  Again, I stink at this game too... unless I'm playing the computer on it's least intelligent mode. 

  8. Scrabble.  This game was a life saver in Korea.  Most all of our students either loved this game, or at least preferred it to studying.  I used it all the time as a bribe.  And since we were in the English words mode, Derek and I would often play it at home, too!

  9. Mario Party.  I am a Mario super fan!  Mario Party on the Wii is one of my favorites because it's so cute and a fun boardgame with tons of fun mini-games!

  10. Guitar Hero/Rockband 2.  I don't think I need to explain this one.  Anybody who's played either of these games love them!!!  Derek and I are so excited because we just unlocked all the songs on each game.

PS:  I want to add a shout-out to!  I got most of my references through them and found that they have great ratings, suggestions, and summaries of almost any game!  Check them out!

Friday, July 24, 2009


Gah!  I just looked at my Baby Counter widget, and I only have 62 more days until my September 24th due date!!!

Does anyone have any advice for what I should be doing these last couple of months?  I feel so unprepared!

Friday Finds: A Link Round-up

I haven't been as good at posting as I would have liked to be this week.  AND I didn't collect any interesting finds throughout the week either!  All I have are two from this morning.

Contest on CoffeeShope Free PS/PSE Actions!  This woman is amazing!  She makes so many cool actions for free!  This week she's doing a contest.  She'll do a random drawing and pick one or two lucky people for a custom ready-for-the-web action.  It will resize, sharpen, and add your custom watermark to your pictures!  Awesome!  I hope I win!

Akizo Designs, Digital Scrapbooking from Japan.  This girl has some good freebies every now and then.  Most of the website is in Japanese, but she does have the important stuff like, "download here," in English.  Even though I don't read Japanese very well, I was happy that this foreign blog was in Japanese.  At least that way somebody in our house can read it.  There are quite a few French digi-scrapping sites out there!

Wednesday, July 22, 2009

My first real digital page!

Way Back When Wednesday - Don't Waste Waste!

I've posted about the trash woes we had in Korea before. This is just one specific story that we think is just hilarious!

One evening, Derek was taking out the trash.  We were at the point in our stay in Korea that we knew that we weren't disposing our trash correctly, but didn't quite know the right way.  We were still putting everything together in one bag.  As Derek was walking down the street to the trash pile (our apartment building didn't have enough space around it to have an area for trash nearby), he noticed a couple of men standing near the trash, pointing and talking.

He knew immediately they were trash inspectors.  They were there either because someone had complained about the "organization" of trash, or because they were trying to figure out a better place for the trash.  Either way, it was a problem because Derek was carrying two bags of overflowing, "unorganized" trash.  They had seen him so he couldn't turn back or try and walk past nonchalantly.  So he decided the best thing to do was walk right up, throw the bags on the pile and hope they wouldn't notice anything.

It didn't work.  Being foreigners, we were always scrutinized in everything we did.  Throwing away trash was no different.  The two men saw at once that Derek was throwing out bags that had food, paper, plastic, glass, AND cans (all of which should be separted)!  The two men being older Koreans, didn't quite know what to do with a foreigner.  Their English wasn't that great, and they had no idea that Derek was pretty proficient in Korean.  They started gesturing and mouthing words convinced that Derek would eventually understand them and fix the problem.

After a confusing minute or two, Derek had enough of the weird game of charades, so he turned to them and in Korean said something like, "do you have no sound?"  The English translation sounds pretty weird, but the two shocked Korean men understood immediately that Derek spoke at least some Korean so they tried to tell him what the problem was in Korean. 

The problem with talking to many Koreans in Korean is that they don't simplify the language for foreigners.  At least, they didn't for us.  Derek did pretty well with Korean, but there's a lot he didn't understand. 

Pretty soon, the three of them realized that they weren't really getting anywhere with gestures or Korean, so the two trash inspectors tried some English.  What they came out with was "Don't waste, waste!  Don't waste waste!" as they pointed to the trash bags Derek had just thrown.  He took it to mean what he already suspected, separate your trash so that you don't waste the recyclable goods by contaminating them with the old food.

He smiled and said something like, "Ok, I'll do that next time."  I guess the trash inspectors were pleased with that answer because the conversation ended there and we weren't fined for our trash violation! :D

PS: Here's another English teacher's experience with the Korean trash system.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Top Ten Tuesday - Silly Me!

I'm stealing half of today's post from another post from the past.  I know lame, huh?  But this morning's breakfast conversation led me to a great top 10 post, and the old post fit right in.  So here it is.  Today's top 10 list is...

Top 10 Silliest Things I Thought as a Child
  1. I love/loved the smell of matches and candles burning.  One Christmas, in an effort to get a good whiff of a candle, I took a deep breath in and accidentally sniffed it out.  I momentarily froze because I thought that what I had just done could be considered smoking.

  2. Because of a good intentioned but badly executed educational movie on AIDS my elementary school had all of us watch back in the '80s,  I used to think that I could get AIDS by not wearing a band-aid on an open wound.  Subsequently, anytime I was bleeding, I always had to have a band-aid.

  3. Half of my childhood was spent in Utah.  At the time, there wasn't that much ethnic diversity.  The only exposure to African-Americans I had was the Cosby Show.  One day, I asked my parents why Bill Cosby painted his fingernails white.

  4. One day, I asked my dad to blow up a balloon for me.  I guess he was busy at the time, so my mom offered.  I told her that I wanted dad to do it because when boys blow up balloons, they float in the air.  My mom laughed and said that nobody could do that.  That was helium.  I blame that thought on Winnie the Pooh.  I swear there was a scene in one of those movies where Christopher Robin blew up a balloon, tied a string to it, and it floated.

  5. Speaking of Christopher Robin, I thought he was a she for a while.  I think it was because in my mind, Robin is was a girl's name, and even though Christopher was a boy's name, adding Robin to the end of it made it a girl's name.  He also wore some pretty gender neutral clothing.  AND what boy plays with that many stuffed animals?

  6. Because the word for "no" in Spanish is "no," I thought "no" in all languages was no.  I actually thought that for a long time.

  7. When we moved to North Carolina, our toilets were "low flow."  Meaning, they had less water in the bowls.  After living in our brand-new house for a few days, I asked my parents when we'd be getting more water in our toilets.  You see, I had no concept of "low flow," and since our house was just built, I thought that somehow affected the water in the toilets.

  8. As a child, I thought that boys were not full grown until they were as tall as my dad.  My dad is 6'5"...  Most boys don't get that tall.
  9.  I thought that when my parents went to do temple work, they literally went to the temple and did office work at desks, filling out forms.  (To learn more about LDS Temples, click here)

  10. Since being married to my husband (who grew up in the military), I've learned a lot of things about life in the military.  This morning, we were talking about how there are so many military specific vocabulary terms that non-military people have no clue about. 

    One such vocabulary term for me was MRE.  Mind you, I had an idea of what an MRE was.  Desert Storm was a big deal when I was in 1st grade, and I was a pretty observational child.  I had heard that the US government was going to drop food supplies--or MREs--for the troops in Iraq.  So I knew that an MRE was some sort of Army food.   But what I didn't know was what it looked like, so I concocted a grenade-like packaging for the MREs.

    Hey, it made sense in my head!  The only other thing I had ever heard of being "dropped" was a bomb, and a grenade is sort of like a bomb...  Sort of.  And it fit the toughness requirement for being dropped from an airplane, AND it was aerodynamic (Derek informed me that when things are falling to the ground, they don't need to be aerodynamic.  I cam back with a witty, "Well, if they're aerodynamic, then they'll fall straighter and hit their targets better!" One point for me, right?).

    The really funny part of this childhood thought is since I haven't really thought about MREs since Desert Storm, I never had an opportunity to correct my misconception.  Until a couple of weeks ago when Derek and I rearranged my parents' food storage, some of which was MREs.  But to my credit, as soon as I saw what MREs really looked like, I thought, "well, duh!  Of course that's what they look like!"

Monday, July 20, 2009

Monday Morning Musings - Book Review

So I finished reading The Chase by Clive Cussler last night.  It was a great read!  Cussler is one of my favorite authors because he puts the right amount of action, romance and comedy in his writing without it being too risque or vulgar. 

The Chase is part of a new series (I think.  It's what I heard; although it seemed like the author left it open to either way.  It could stand alone or be a part of a series).  There's a new main character who was suspiciously similar to Dirk Pitt (a main character in another of Cusslers' series) for the first few chapters, but then he got his own identity about mid-way through the book.  The similarity didn't really bother me too much.  I liked reading the adventures of Dirk Pitt.

There was one slightly inappropriate scene, but it was sort of like an edited movie.  You know what happened, but didn't see--or rather, read--it.  I appreciated that.  And since the novel is set in the early 20th century West, there was a lot of gun slinging, but nothing that bothered me.

Probably the most surprising thing for me in the book was that the author made a very positive reference to Salt Lake City and the Mormons!  That almost never happens!  When we--the Mormons, or members of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints--show up in books, we're often portrayed as strange and secretive.  Not so in this book!

I really enjoyed reading The Chase by Clive Cussler and look forward to more of his great action and adventure novels!

Friday, July 17, 2009

Friday Finds: A Link Round-up

God Bless the Internet, Cute Overload. This is one of those cute "are you my mother?" sort of stories. This time it's a male pigeon/dove with two baby rabbits. Cute!!! The thing I like best about the internet is that you can find all kinds of things in a minimal amount of time through linkage! Jessica Sprague is the best. I've linked up to a bunch of great sites through her photo editing class. Today it was a free font site dafont. FREE! I love free!

Yes, You Can Paint Laminate Furniture, Blissfully Domestic. I've wondered this myself! I'll have to make a note of this.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Thankful Thursday - Generous Neighbors with a Large Library!

Today I am thankful for our generous neighbors, the Butlers, with a large library!  They are always willing to lend us a book anytime we need one.  And the great thing is their tastes are quite a bit like ours!

It all started when I stopped by their house one afternoon and noticed that they had a bunch of Clive Cussler books.  I really enjoy his writing.  It's quite a bit like a James Bond action sort of thing but without all the womanizing.  We discussed our mutual love for the books, and I left with a couple novels of his that I hadn't read yet. 

Ever since that afternoon, Derek and I have been enjoying various books from their library.  And yesterday, Derek came home with another, The Chase.  It's a whole new series!

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Way Back When Wednesday - The guy who fell asleep on me

Derek and I took the subway many times when we visited Seoul.  We loved it!  It was cheap, easy and convenient; three things necessary for a foreigner!

And usually riding the subway wasn't uncomfortable.  Most of the time we didn't happen to ride during "rush hour" (I did that once with two HUGE bags, not fun!), and we often took the routes less traveled so we usually weren't smushed in and usually had plenty of room.

But one time I happened to sit in between Derek and a middle-aged businessman.  Not a huge problem, but he was very sleepy.  After a few minutes, his head started bobbing.  And then, all of a sudden, he flopped over onto my shoulder!  I had no idea what to do!  I couldn't push him off because of the angle, and Derek couldn't push him off because he was too far away.

I tried to shrug him off with my shoulders, but he was out!  It seemed like nothing short of a good, hard shake or a glass of water was going to wake him up!  Eventually Derek and I got him off my shoulder.  But only after a few seconds, he was back on my shoulder. 

By that time, people around me were noticing, pointing and laughing.  Especially the two young women across the way.  They thought it was the funniest thing!  And it was.  I just didn't see it as funny at the time.  I wanted that man to go far away!!!

Seeing my increasing discomfort, Derek again tried to get him off with renewed efforts.  He reached around me and poked, pushed and shook the guy.  He even tried blowing in his ear!  And of course, all our efforts were making the young women laugh even harder. 

Finally, just before our stop, we got him off me.  I don't remember what it was that worked.  I just remember being so relieved that I no longer had a sleeping Korean businessman on my shoulder!

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Top Ten Tuesday - Things I Love about Life Today


  1. Fun, new recipes: I've been into trying out new recipes the last few days.  The latest were Lime Snowball Cookies and Chocolate Mint Snaps.  Both very delicious!  But maybe I should start experimenting with real food recipes so I don't make my whole household fat!! :)

  2. Crockpots:  Quite a few of the new freezer meals I made a couple weeks ago can be cooked in the crockpot.  I love it!  The only problem I'm having now is remembering to take out the food to defrost a the evening or day before!

  3. My memory-foam mattress:  I love my bed!  It's so comfortable!  Everyone should have one!

  4. Digi scrapbooking freebies:  Why buy digital scrapbooking supplies when you can get them for free?  It takes a bit longer to get a good stash, but totally worth it.  I've got so much stuff now that I had to buy an external hard drive just so my computer would function!

  5. Jessica Sprague's photo editing class:  My poor husband has had to sit through a few of these class videos.  But I love them (and him!) and it's nice that he'll humor me and watch them with me.  He's always impressed with my resulting applied knowledge.  I was lucky enough to find out about Jessica's free class a month or so ago.  I have learned so much and I'm having way too much fun!!!

  6. Family:  My brother and his wife stopped by for a few minutes this afternoon.  I hadn't seen them for quite a while (They've both been sick and I was out of town for a week).  I had forgotten how nice it is to see them!  They really need to come by more often!

  7. Living with family:  This one might seem weird to a lot of people.  My husband and I live with my parents.  It was a decision we made as families when we realized that it was taking a lot more work than one person could do 24-hrs a day to take care of my mom (she has advanced MS).  It's not always super convenient, but there are definitely a lot of benefits and blessings of being with extended family.

  8. Aprons:  Lately, I've been noticing that I've been needing aprons a lot more than I used to.  Probably has something to do with being pregnant.  I guess I'm just more clumsy or more careless than I used to be.  I was getting ingredients all over me!  But now I've discovered the magic of aprons.  No more mess!

  9. Nice weather:  I don't go outside very often or for very long periods of time, but it is really nice to see blue sky, be able to open windows in the mornings, and have a cool breeze when I go to get the mail and newspaper. 

  10. Only 2.5 more months to go!  I've entered the I'm-ready-to-be-done phase.  I'm not completely miserable yet, but I'm tired of the little inconveniences of being pregnant.  Plus, I'm really wanting to see what our kid looks like when she (at least we're pretty sure she's a she) comes out!

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Saturday Somethings - Holy Smokes!!

My friend Rachel, again of Winsor Bloggityblog, told me about a great freezer meal resource, Once a Month Mom! It's perfect! They do all the work to create an ingredients list. For some reason, that's the hardest part for me (Maybe it has something to do with math. I just can't wrap my head around it.). AND they have new menus for each month!  Thanks Rachel!

Friday, July 10, 2009

Friday Finds: A Link Round-up

Powdered Milk Food Storage Recipes, Everyday Food Storage.  I love chocolate.  I love chocolate milk, ice cream, shakes, etc.  Enough said!

Google Chrome: Taking Aim at Microsoft -- and the iPhone,  Interesting!  I had no idea you could make a free operating system.

Where Rich Countries are Buying Farmland, The Christian Science Monitor.  And some people think we're imperialistic!

The Amazing Backwards Adventure.  This is a fun video a friend of mine from High School made with some friends.  Everything is backwards!!!  Found it on his brother's family's blog.

funny pictures of cats with captions
see more Lolcats and funny pictures
So this picture proves that my maturity level is what, 8 years old at the most? 

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Thankful Thursday - Freezer Meals

I am grateful for freezer meals today.  And I was yesterday, and I will be tomorrow.  They are great!  So nice to just take them out of the freezer, thaw and then cook!

They were a bit of work to assemble, but so worth it!

I found this recipe book, Don't Panic, Dinner's in the Freezer, through, then checked it out of the library.  I like it so much that I ordered it and the sequel plus another!  Hopefully they come soon!

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

My Cat... again

I've been having fun with my newly learned PSE skills from Jessica Sprague's photo editing class.  She's great!

Yes, my cat really is that cute! She covers her eyes while sleeping.

Way Back Wednesday - Exit Korea This Way

We had quite the time moving back to the States from Korea.  We had way too much stuff, and didn't want to part with any of it.  Eventually we got it paired down to four suitcases and four carry-ons (the maximum limit of two of each for each of us).

The next question was how we were going to get all eight bags and the two of us three and a half hours from our place in Sokcho, on the East coast, to the airport in Incheon, on the West Coast.  In the past, we got a ride to a nearby town, Gangneung, to take a bus directly to the airport.  Very convenient!

This time was different.  Our flight was scheduled to leave around 10 am.  The earliest bus left the Gangneung station at 6 am.  Since the bus ride would take at least 4 hours, we didn't think we'd be able to get to the airport and through check-in and security on time for our flight.  We figured that we would need to get to Seoul the night before, and then travel on to the airport the next morning.  That leg of the trip was only an hour so we'd have plenty of time.

So how were we going to get us and all of our stuff on the three legs of the trip: From our house to the local bus station, from the bus station in Seoul to a nearby motel, from the motel back to the bus station, and then from the bus to the check-in desk at the airport.  Remember, we had the four suitcases and four carry-ons.

We arranged with our boss's wife, Mrs. Jung to take us to the local bus station the afternoon before our flight.  She came and we loaded everything up.  Or at least we thought we had.  Once we got to the bus station and had bought our tickets, we realized that we had left one bag at our apartment, Derek's lap-top bag.  Something we really didn't want to leave!

So we immediately called Mr. Kim, our boss, and asked him or his wife to get it for us.  He told us that since our bus would be leaving in about 10 minutes, we should change our ticket to a later time because his wife was running errands and probably wouldn't be able to get the bag to us in time.

I asked Derek what I should say to the ticket seller.  He basically told me to show her the tickets we had, then say the new time in Korean and then say change in English.  They should understand that.  I did that easily and as I came out I saw that Mrs. Jung was there with the bag and that we would still be able to make our original bus time.  So I ran back inside and repeated the same ticket exchange--except in the reverse--with the same ticket seller.  She sort of laughed at me, but was willing to do the exchange... again!

Fortunately we were able to make it on the bus just in time, even with all our stuff and had an uneventful trip from Sokcho to Seoul.  But then once we got off the bus in Seoul, we realized that we had to figure out some way to get to a motel for the night, and we didn't see any just outside the station.  We didn't want to drag all eight bags all around with us so we thought we'd find a taxi, load all our stuff, and then just tell him to go to the nearest motel.

Sounds easy right?  It should have been.  There were plenty of taxis waiting for customers, but none of them would take us!  And we couldn't figure out why.  After what seemed like hours of trying to get a taxi in the dark, a kind Korean woman came to help us.  We told her all we wanted to do was get a taxi to take us to a motel nearby because we would be needing to get back to the bus station the next morning.

She spoke excellent English and understood us perfectly.  She went to talk to a few drivers and then came back to report that all of those drivers did not want to do a local run.  They only wanted to take passengers long distance.  It didn't make any sense to me, but then again, a lot of things in Korea didn't make sense to me.  She told us she would continue to find a taxi for us, and very soon, she did!  Sometimes things are so much easier when you don't do them yourself!

We loaded up our bags in the trunk and the back seat.  I sat in the back, and Derek sat in the front.  The driver had to drive very carefully because the trunk was unable to close because our bags were so big!  The funniest part (funniest after the fact) was that he literally drove just around the corner.  We could have walked!!!  But at least this way we didn't have to drag our bags around!

As soon as the taxi stopped and Derek and the driver started unloading our bags, I jumped out to see if the night manager of the motel would be able to help us get our bags inside.  I don't remember what I said, or even if it was in Korean or English, but he did come out to help us.  He helped us all the way up to our room!

The next difficulty we had was that the size and amount of luggage was almost too big to fit in the room!   All Korean lodgings have a separated entryway.  This is the place where you take off your shoes before entering the living areas.  In this particular motel room, there was the main door to our room, and then another door to the sleeping area.  The door to the bathroom was off of the entryway.  Since only one or two of our smaller bags would fit in the sleeping area with us, we had to put all the rest of our bags in the the entry way.

And they just barely fit.  We were able to maneuver to and from the bathroom, but if we wanted to get in or out of the room, we had to shuffle our bags around to make room for the main door to open!  Thank goodness we were only there for the one night.

Since our flight left in the morning, and we still needed to take the hour bus trip from Seoul to the airport, we decided to take another taxi to the bus station the next day to make things just that much easier.  The manager helped us get a taxi, and then we had no trouble getting from the bus station to the airport and from that point, our trip home went without a hitch!

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

Top Ten Tuesday - Provo Trip

Derek and I just got back from a wonderful week in Provo with his family, and we're kinda wishing we were still there! So for this week's Top 10 list, I'm listing...

Top 10 Fun Family Memories
  1. Derek's new tie.  And book, and hex key set.  Whenever Derek's gone, I miss him a lot.  When I miss Derek a lot, I want to buy him a present.  Gift giving is my primary love language.  Not usually a problem unless he's gone for a long time.  Then I buy him multiple presents.  This time I bought him three.  It was like it was his birthday or something!  He loved all three, but I think he loved his new tie the most.  I found an awesome deal at Costco on an awesome green tie.  He's worn it twice already!

  2. Seeing funny things nieces and nephews do.  For example, one afternoon two nieces and one nephew were discovering the joys of pepper jack cheese.  And of course since it came from a cheese block there were plenty of "cutting the cheese" jokes.  Funny thing was it was the nephew who didn't get the joke.  While the girls were giggling uncontrollably, he was looking confused and saying, "Ok, what part of the body is 'the cheese'?!"  They finally gave in and told him.

  3. A 27 mile bike ride with Doug.  So this wasn't me, obviously.  It was Derek and he thoroughly enjoyed it!  Doug is his oldest brother.  He graduated and left home while Derek was still pretty young, so Derek jumps at opportunities to get to know him better.  Derek came back happy that he completed the ride.  He hardly even seemed winded, and he only crashed once.  It was his own fault, and a little silly so I won't post the details here.  You'll have to hear it from him.  AND he got rid of his watch tan.  He's been trying to do that for months now!

  4. Playing card games.  Daryl and Kim brought a big box full of different card games.  We love playing games.  You might even say we are a game playing people, so we really enjoyed playing with family over the week.  Especially on Saturday night.  Six of us (David, Daryl, Kim, Sarah, Derek and I) played 5 Crowns, and were over the top silly.  It was so much fun!

  5. Running errands with Kim.  One morning, all the grandkids and most of the brothers went on a canyon hike.  I was feeling a little sad because being pregnant, I wasn't able to go.  But then I found out that my sister-in-law, Kim, wasn't going either (she has a 4-year-old) and was going to be running some errands.  Perfect!  I wouldn't be stuck at home and bored!  And boy, did Kaylee--the 4-year-old--entertain us!  It was hilarious!

  6. Blockus Duo.  While Kim and I were running errands, we stopped by a really fun toy and games store called Funfinity.  The store has so much great stuff but sadly is wildly overpriced!  I stood there looking at their great selection of games--any and all of which I would have bought in a heartbeat if I had the money--for way too long!  Finally, I decided I couldn't live without buying Blockus Duo because I knew Derek would love me forever if I gave him that game.  So I got it and he loves it, and I love it too.  I actually won once or twice!

  7. A present from Derek.   While I was waiting for the store clerk to wrap Blockus Duo, who walks in?  Derek!  Good thing she had it mostly wrapped.  I was shocked to see him there and he was surprised to see me as well.  I thought he was still in SLC with his Mom picking up his brother David.  I asked him what the heck he was doing at the toy store (I didn't figure that was a place he normally went by himself), and he said he was there to buy me a present!  How cute is that?!

  8. Going to a Korean Restaurant.  Everytime we're in Provo, Derek and I love to visit the best Korean restaraunt we've been to in the States, Sam Hawk.  This trip, we were able to go with Derek's parents, his brother Doug and two of his kids, us, and our friends Yi and Sarah.  Delicious food and wonderful company!

  9. Playing Mah Jong with Yi and Sarah.  Yi and Sarah are very near and dear to our hearts.  Yi is our oldest and best friend from college and his wife Sarah is wonderful!  We love to spend time with them whenever we can!  On our last trip down to Provo, they taught us how to play Mah Jong, the real Chinese way.  We got together again this week and played.  It was so much fun!  And they brought us some fun stuff back from their trip home to China.  Thanks guys!

  10. All the 4th of July Festivities.  Derek's family really knows how to party!  All day Saturday we had fun things to do.  Saturday morning some of the family went to the 4th of July parade.  Derek and I elected to stay home and make cherry turnovers (yummy!).  Parades really aren't for us... yet.  Our kid's still baking.  That afternoon most of the family went kayaking and thoroughly enjoyed it.  Kim and I again stayed home for the same reasons as mentioned in #5.  We played games and took turns kicking each other's trash.  That evening we had a great BBQ and then we watched the fireworks from BYU's Stadium of Fire.  A great day full of family and fun!

    And a bonus!  It's really hard to limit it to 10 great memories!

  11. Going to the Oquirrh Mountain Temple open house.  My sister-in-law, Becca, was able to get us all tickets to the temple open house.  Yay Becca!  It was a great idea!  The temple was so beautiful and it was special to be there as a family to experience it.  I was a little disappointed though because at one point Elder L. Tom Perry walked right past us and we didn't even notice!  The ushers had separated the line so that something could get through.  They didn't tell us what. When a group of people started to pass us all we thought was, "Well, that's not a wheel chair," and turned back around so that we weren't staring at a bunch of strangers.  Little did we know Elder Perry was in that group!  Darn!

Monday, July 6, 2009

Monday Morning Musings - Hello Again!

We are home!  Emphasis on WE because Derek is finally back!  Hooray! 

We had a wonderful week in Provo visiting Derek's family.  Four of Derek's brothers and their families were able to visit HQ in Provo all at the same time!  It was tons of fun and we did all kinds of fun things.  I'll be giving more details in tomorrow's Top 10 post.  Be sure to come back! :)

It's a shame that all the brothers live so far apart from each other.  It would be a blast to get together more often.  But then would we really appreciate the time we spend together?

But as great as it is to be on vacation with family, it is really nice to be back home.  And especially to be back home with Derek.  I told him next time he traveled.  I'm going to come with him.  NO MATTER WHAT!!! :D