Wednesday, December 31, 2008

slipcover

Mom, this post is for you...

Once upon a time in a land far, far away, my parents gave us their old parlor couch. It served them well for, oh, 25 to 30 years. And then they gave it to us. Its beauty quickly faded (literally--the fabric faded and wore through and the cushions flattened like pancakes). Guess that's what happens when a couch goes from being a parlor couch to a TV couch.

So I got this great idea to make a slipcover. And who better to help me than my mom? If you haven't met my parents, then you don't yet know that they can build/fix/sew anything. ANYTHING. Don't believe me? My dad just finished leveling out the foundation of my sister's house. Tell me--when is my generation going to inherit this trait? I'm sure it's genetic. Not learned at all. One day you are just able to do everything, right? RIGHT??

Ok, back to my mom. She can sew a mean slipcover. So I picked out the fabric (dark chocolate corduroy) and she pretty much did the rest. This means we spent countless hours in my living room measuring, cutting foam cushions, measuring, cutting fabric, and measuring again. And that was just the first night. Note to self: my mom and I do not function when we get tired. I think we spent twice as much time measuring that first night than we needed to.

And then we took a break. For, oh, maybe 6 months. Then we got together again. This time we were going to pound it out and finish it. But when one person is a perfectionist (my mom) and the other really doesn't know what she's doing (me), projects take a loooooooooong time.

So we took a break. For, oh, maybe another 6 months? I lost track of time.

But today. Yes, today. The day I am finishing my New Year's Resolutions. I sewed on the final flaps of fabric, sewed some velcro to the inside of the slipcover, nailed velcro to the back of the couch, secured the slipcover into place, and....

IT'S FINISHED! It only took a year, but it is finished!

(I probably could have taken a better picture. This will have to do.)

Thanks, Mom!

blocks

I'm working on my New Year's Resolutions today. You know, the ones I am trying to finish before the New Year. Something tells me I'm not going to make it. But like any good procrastinator, I'm putting forth a huge effort on the last day of the year.

This morning I finished my blocks project. I was supposed to just stick vinyl letters on them, but considering stickers can be easily peeled off, I figured I should paint the letters on. So I used the outline of the stickers (What do you call that--the negative relief of the sticker?) as stencils and painted the letters. This took a RIDICULOUSLY long time. And no, I am not exaggerating. After hours of tedious labor, I finally finished the blocks. And this was the first thing I spelled:



Yes, I used all the blocks. Yes, that flag is supposed to be an "E." Yes, I think it's close enough. Yes, I attribute my mad block skills to all the hours spent playing speed scrabble with my mom.

But since "hate" is such a harsh word and I didn't have enough blocks to spell "strongly dislike," I decided to change the blocks to a more uplifting message. So I left this love note for Christian and Richard:



Now that I think about it, I love these blocks.

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

annoying holiday shoppers

I went shopping today--along with the rest of the world. I am not a fan of shopping in crowds (especially since you can shop in peace during the rest of the year), so the fact that I went out shopping today was a surprise to even me. In fact, I have avoided malls for this entire holiday season. Impressive? You bet. I'm okay with crowds in at a concert, in a big city, at a New Years party, or during big races. No, scratch that. I don't even like crowds in races. Give me wide open spaces any day.

But back to my story. Everywhere I went, I parked in the farthest corner of the parking lot so that I didn't have to deal the holiday parking-spot road rage. I'm just not interested in watching people be annoyed and impatient. I'm on vacation. Everything I'm doing this week is slow and calm and carefree.

I had to get one last thing before Christmas, and when I found it, I noticed that the check-out line wound all the way to the back of the store. I didn't mind, though. It is two days before Christmas, so I didn't expect anything less. I just enjoyed my time in line playing a game on my phone.

After waiting in the loooooong line, I stopped into another store where I was actually surprised to find a lady to help me (it seemed she was one of the only people on the floor). She had been helping me for less than 30 seconds when a very annoyed man interrupted us. It was obvious he had been standing in line for what he considered WAY too long. [Side note: his line was half as long as the one I had stood in.] He walked up and quite rudely said, "Is there a reason there are only two people at the cash registers? Does that other register not work?" The lady politely said, "I don't know, actually. You'll have to ask the cashiers." To which the guy answered, "What? Do you not know how to work the register or something?" and stomped back to his place in line in a huff.

I looked at the lady and said, "Well he was rude, wasn't he?" She smiled and said, "If he didn't want to stand in line, he should have gotten his shopping done earlier."

Amen, lady. A-men.

Saturday, December 20, 2008

my favorite dog

I am obsessed with this dog from The Soup.

Friday, December 19, 2008

waiting

I'm at work. I'm on the clock. I have run out of things to do. I am waiting to go home.

Vacation!
My work shuts down for two weeks every Christmas. Today is my last day before the break. My vacation starts as soon as I get home.

Christmas cards!
I'll be sending them in the next couple days. That is, if I don't get tired of addressing them halfway through. You better hope you're one of the first people I write on an envelope, because there's no telling what will happen to the people at the end of the list. I will work on them as soon as I get home.

Wrapping presents!
I have not wrapped a single gift. My poor tree has nothing to protect. But that is all going to change as soon as I get home.

In other words, I'm ready to go home! Hello? Higher administration? Can you send us home already?

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

we need nerf guns

Christian and I are sitting in the living room. He is on his computer. I am on my laptop. So I sent him a message on facebook. You know that "pop" sound facebook makes when you get an instant message? Well let me tell you, it is WAY more fun when there are two computers in the room:

Molly: what's up, yo? (pop!)

Christian: what up you (pop!)

Molly: i should have been in bed over an hour ago. i like that sound (pop!)

Christian: i know (pop!)

Molly: pop! (pop!)

Christian: h (pop!)

Christian: h (pop!)

Christian: h (pop!)

Christian: h (pop!)

Molly: hr (pop!)

Christian: h (pop!)

Molly: s (pop!)

Christian: h (pop!)

Molly: d (pop!)

Molly: f (pop!)

Christian: h (pop!)

Molly: g (pop!)

Molly: s (pop!)

Molly: g (pop!)

Molly: i feel like we're shooting each other with nerf guns (pop!)

Christian (spoken): Nerf guns are fun.

Then Richard walked in the room. So we told him to sign on to the other laptop (yeah, we have three computers in our living room) so that we could all *shoot* each other at the same time.

If you ever thought we were cool, now you know the truth. We are nerds.

Monday, December 15, 2008

we love kitty

Kitty is the best ever. We love Kitty. She is the coolest person we know. Everyone should want to be like Kitty. The paparazzi doesn't know what it's missing. (Have I gotten your attention yet, Kitty?)

But this week we love Kitty even more than usual.

For this:


And this:


And this:


And this:


And this:


And this:


I'm still amazed the lady at will-call finally gave in and gave me the tickets. Yes, Ronnie put us on "the list" (ok, maybe he didn't technically put us on the list). Yes, my name really is Kitty Carter (kind of). Yes, I accidentally left my ID at home (or purposefully in the car). I guess I finally looked like I was going to cry (I wasn't really) so she told me that if the real Kitty Carter comes and wants her tickets, that I was a dead girl. Or something to that extent. But I wasn't worried. I knew the real Kitty Carter wasn't coming for the tickets.

The only thing that would have made the night better is if Kitty and Ian had been able to come, too. I think they are kicking themselves for letting us go. But Christian is a die-hard fan and probably would have bugged them about getting tickets for the rest of their lives.

So Kitty and Ian (and The Killers) -- we owe you guys big time.

And as The Killers closed their concert singing "When You Were Young," I thought to myself, "This is like playing Rock Band at Jenni's house. Only better."

Friday, December 12, 2008

phew!

Herbie is back home in his tank! (Which he actually may not be very happy about.) Christian looked up around the fridge motor again (we had already looked there at least twice) and found him! No santa hat anymore. Just the fluff attached to his shell. I don't blame him.

Good thing Christian found him, because Herbie would have been mortified if I had posted his picture all over the neighborhood:



Next up on the list of things to find: my sister's bike. She's pretty sure it was stolen. And something tells me it's not hiding in the undercarriages of our fridge.

Thursday, December 11, 2008

dear herbie

Dear Herbie,

Please come home. I'm sorry. I should never have made you wear that silly hat. Animals should never have to wear clothes. Please forgive me.

Please know that I never intended to send your pictures out as a Christmas card. It was only a joke. A horribly bad joke. And then I posted the pictures on the internet. I can see why you are mad.

But the reason you are lost is because I wanted you to be happy. You see, when I went to pick you up to take off your silly hat, you held onto the carpet for dear life. In fear of popping off one of your legs--believe me, it can happen. I once pulled on a crawdad when it was holding onto my friend's shirt, and instead of letting go, it held on until its pincher popped off--it was disgusting. Where was I? Oh yes, in fear of popping off one of your legs, I left you to walk around a bit more. You seemed happy exploring under the Christmas tree. I was late for work, so I told Christian to keep an eye on you while I took a quick shower. It was the fastest shower of my life (I was late for work). When I came out ten minutes later to put you away, Christian said he saw you go into the kitchen.

And that was the last we saw of you.

I'm sorry. I had to go to work. But I resumed searching as soon as I got home. I have spent the last four hours cleaning out every nook and cranny in our house. (By the way--thanks--my house needed a good cleaning.) But I can't find you. I'm worried sick. And you're still wearing that stupid hat.

So I'm begging you to come home. I've put out sand, food, and water for you in four different places. Please make lots of tracks in the sand when you go to drink the water. That way we'll know which room you are in.

Also, you're making me look like a crazy pet owner. So the sooner you come home, the sooner I can stop looking like I'm obsessed with you. Which I obviously am.

Love,
Molly

PS--Gracie misses you.

i couldn't resist

(click to enlarge)



Everyone send me your address! No guarantees that I'm actually going to get around to sending out cards, but I promise I won't send you pictures of our hermit crabs. My email is molly (dot) auf (at) gmail (dot) com.

(PS--After our photo shoot this morning, I let Herbie run wild. And then I lost him. So there's a hermit crab wearing a santa hat hiding somewhere in our house.)

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

let's take a poll

If you were me, would you send out Christmas cards?

Do we wait til we have kids to send out Christmas cards?

Does Richard count as having kids?

If not, do we dress up our hermit crabs and send a picture of them as our Christmas card? Do you think they would pose in santa hats?

No, really. I'm not asking if you want a card from us. I'm just asking if you would send out Christmas cards if you were me.

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

weekend overload

This weekend we, um, contributed to global warming.

(Friday night)

Drove to Oakland to watch Dianna's performance at the temple. Good job, Dianna! You are a beautiful dancer!

Drove back home.

(Saturday)


Drove to San Francisco. Walked/jogged a 5K in San Francisco with the Girls on the Run program. My buddy was Cristal, a 3rd-grader from East Palo Alto. She asked me if we were almost done before we had even gotten to the 1-mile mark. Ha! She was great. Everyone should volunteer next year!

Drove back home.

Drove to Sacramento with Lindsey and Rebecca. Dinner and dessert with the girls. Mmmmm. Shopping! We picked up some books (you know, the kind you can curl up in bed with), and we couldn't resist buying ourselves an assortment of shoes and jackets. We had fun to say the least! Spent the night at Ian and Kitty's. Thanks again, guys!!!

(Sunday)

Up and moving at 5:55am. Too early. But for a great cause!

Lindsey and Kathy ran the Cal Internation Marathon! Rebecca and I served as support crew and running buddies. The marathoners rocked! Congrats to both ladies for your awesome time (and inspirational endurance at the end of the race)! And congrats to Kathy for her first marathon!

Aaaaannnd then I drove back home.

Then we drove up the mountain to get a Christmas tree! (The Christmas tree deserves--and will get--its own post.) And drove back home.

Watched the Amazing Race finale! I won't spoil the end. Made cookies for my work holiday cookie exchange. Ate too much cookie dough. Stayed up until about 1:30am chit-chatting with my hubby. We had been around each other all afternoon, yet seemed to have a million fun things to tell each other as soon as the clock struck midnight. Why does that happen?

'Twas a great weekend, indeed. I need a nap.

Thursday, December 4, 2008

tea time: ninja style

As I sip my hot apple cider, I imagine I'm having a nice little tea time...

Ninja style with my gmail ninja.

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

new years resolutions

Remember how I said I had crafts coming out my ears? Oh wait. You probably haven't had a chance to read that yet. Read the post below this.

Ok, are you back now? Good. Like I said, we haven't seen the surface of our kitchen table in a while.

So I have some New Years Resolutions. Not the kind you start in the new year. The kind you finish before the year is over. I hope to finish these projects by the end of the year.

Put the final flaps on my slipcover. It is 99% done and so cute. Thanks, Mom! I promise I will sew on the final touches before Christmas!

Finish stenciling my (and my mom's) shirt from our Thanksgiving 5k.

Stencil some cool designs on shirts or skirts.

Paint my vinyl letter blocks so I can spell a million ridiculous phrases like "Howdy Partner" and "No Smoking."

Sew lace onto slips so I can layer them under skirts.

Make cards out of all the scraps of cute paper I rescued from the trash at the RS craft night.

Make cute cookies for my friends for Christmas.

Paint something cool on my bedroom wall.

Anybody want to come do crafts with me?

eleven thoughts from my head

1. I am watching Paris Hilton's My New BFF Reunion Episode. I'm not ashamed. It's ridiculously entertaining.

2. Ahhhh, facebook and twitter. How long before we all start talking in status update mode? "Hi Molly! How are you?" "Molly is way too much work today." I can see it coming. It's not pretty.

3. I've got crafts coming out my ears. And I love it. Although I think Christian would like the kitchen table back.

4. Speaking of crafts, I went to a Relief Society craft night last night (Relief Society=the women in my church). I was in heaven. Not so much because of the crafts, but because there are so many fun women in my ward and I miss them all. I was practically giddy about hanging out and chatting and seeing everyone--and I do mean everyone. They are all awesome.

5. Richard found an iphone on the sidewalk in front of his school. He took it to the office. Too bad we're honest people, huh?

6. This morning I had a dream that I woke up, got dressed, and put my hair up in super cute clips. And my hair looked great. Then I really woke up. An hour late. And I had no cute clips. And my hair does not look great. My dreams have been incredibly mean lately.

7. I made a cake on Sunday. Today is Wednesday. I have eaten the entire thing in the last 4 days. Who says you can't have dessert after breakfast? (And lunch, and dinner...)

8. People don't recognize me. Now that my hair is growing out, whenever I put it up it looks like I'm blond again. And people at work don't recognize me. Literally, I'm getting those Hi-who-are-you-I'm-not-sure-why-you're-smiling-at-me looks again as I walk around campus. Lovely.

9. Speaking of campus. The economic downturn is hitting closer to home. Here at Stanford we're already down to a bare bones budget, and each department has been asked to provide three scenarios in which they cut 5, 7 and 10 percent from their 2009-10 budgets. How do you cut 10 percent when you've already cut all your spending? And the survey says...people.

10. Speaking of economic downturns and losing jobs and not having any money. I can't wait to go spend money here:


11. The ninja theme on my gmail account is a riot. I can't get enough. This was what it looked like at the bottom of my email last night. I had to take a screen shot.

Monday, December 1, 2008

need a break from a spreadsheet

lunch + a piece of cake + a boring spreadsheet = a very sleepy girl

So I am distracting myself in an effort to wake up. I thought about doing this tag a couple weeks ago, but was just officially tagged by Meredith, so I figured I should. In no particular order...

8 favorite TV shows:
- Chuck
- Survivor
- The Office
- 30 Rock
- The Amazing Race
- Lost
- Eh, 6 is close enough to 8, right? What did I forget?

8 Favorite Restaurants:
- Um, we don't go out to eat very much
- El Calderon (Mountain View)
- Plutos (Palo Alto)
- Sushi, good mexican, thai food, milkshakes
- Oh, Belden Taverna (SF) was very yummy
- Anywhere I've never been before

8 things that happened yesterday: (Nov. 30)
- We spoke in church
- I got out the Christmas decorations
- I realized it's my first Christmas with a nativity set. Thanks, Mom!
- I put Christmas music on and left it playing for hours
- We watched Surf's Up (Richard bought it)
- April and Janel came over to "visit teach" (in other words we sat around talking about girl stuff). You ladies can come "visit teach" me every day.
- I made a cake (from a mix--frosting from scratch)
- I ate too much cake

8 things to look forward to:
- Getting a Christmas tree!
- Christmas!
- 2 months of free evenings
- 2 weeks of mandatory vacation from work
- Snowboarding
- The hills turning green from the rain!
- Stormy weather
- Organizing my house (yes, I am dying to do this in my free time)

8 things I love about fall (should this read 'winter' for future tags?):
- leaves turning colors
- blustery days
- my birthday
- wearing orange all the time
- surprisingly warm days after cold spells
- Halloween!
- Thanksgiving!

8 things on my wishlist:
- savings
- peace of mind
- a Christmas tree within the next week
- to be more helpful and loving to those around me
- for people in this world to stop hurting each other
- to learn to speak Portuguese
- to travel
- this last one is private

I tag anyone who wants to do it!

Ok, back to my boring spreadsheet. I'm awake now.

Sunday, November 30, 2008

turkey day run

What a fun Thanksgiving. We ran, we ate, we played with the kids, we napped, we saw Bolt, we had too many sweets. That's what holidays are for, right?

And now for my favorite part of this year's Thanksgiving. The Family Turkey Trim 5k. With the help of my mom, I mapped out a course out in the beautiful hills of Hollister. Downhill point-to-point race. Descended 302 feet in 3.1 miles. Not bad.

I took second place! My brother Tyler is such a competitive person that he would have beat me no matter what pace I was running. With less than a mile left in the race, I was gaining on him. But I made the mistake of clearing my throat. He heard it, turned around surprised to see someone behind him, and picked up the pace. One of these days I'll learn to be more competitive.

Results (I don't think anyone minds me posting the results, because I'm pretty sure we all PR'd):
1st: Tyler at 24:09
2nd: Molly at 24:23
3rd: Ian at 26:25

4th: Ashley W at 27:25
5th: Ashley C at 30:54
6th: Kitty at 31:28 (sang and danced the entire way)
7th: Camden at 33:46 (on a rip stick)
8th: Amy and Mom at 41:27 (the run/walk team)

Highlights of the race:
Making the race medals (stenciled cardboard and massive sugar cookies).

Marking the miles in flour (I accidently put the start line in the wrong place so we actually crossed the start line 0.1 miles into the race. And I ran out of flour, so the finish line just read "F" for "finish" or "fast" or whatever f-word my family was muttering after running 3.1 miles).
Spotting turkeys on the way out.

Taking fun pictures at the start line.
Ian and Kitty jumping onto the side of the Suburban during the race to catch a ride. Funny how they think alike.
Kitty dancing the last 100 feet of the race.
Watching Camden fly around the final corner on a rip stick.
Eating the race medal.

Running my fastest 5k.
Feeling awesome the whole time.
Taking second place.
Having a ton of fun hanging out with my family out on an old country road.

I should organize races more often.

(The rest of my pictures will be posted to smugmug tomorrow at work. My internet at home is too slow.)

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

speaking of techy

So I'm not very good at deleting messages from my inbox. My work inbox has countless old messages sitting there staring at me. I have responded to most of them. Sometimes I get ambitious and try to sort them into folders. I get through about a week of old messages and give up. It doesn't even make a dent in the list.

So yesterday I did what I do every couple months. I went through three weeks of email, moved it all to folders, copied the remaining 2,000-ish messages, and dumped them into a folder called "Old Inbox." That's the lazy woman's quick fix to sorting email.

Since then I have maintained a 3-message inbox inventory of only important messages that I am in the process of resolving, which are marked with a blue "to-do" tag.

I was so happy with my pretty (empty) inbox. A little too happy with it, perhaps. A couple minutes ago, an email notification popped up in the corner of my monitor. I literally felt this wave of complete annoyance pass through me. And this thought ran through my brain: That email just messed up my perfectly pretty inbox. Grrrr.

I think it's time for Thanksgiving break. Eh?

Friday, November 21, 2008

techy high school

Technology from the high school. Helpful or annoying?

What happened to the good old days when your parents only knew your grades when report cards came out? Now we have the online student information system, so we can check Richard's grades daily. Do we? No, but we do use it occasionally. It helps, but it also causes a lot of stress.
Helpful or annoying? Helpful, but Richard would probably say annoying.

What happened to the good old days when your parents could write you a note to excuse you from being late? I sent Richard to school with a note the other day. It was easier than looking up the school number and calling. He called me about 20 minutes later and said they don't accept notes. I had to leave a message on the attendance line. What, so someone else can write it down?
Helpful or annoying? Annoying.

What happened to the good old days when your parents occasionally received information from the high school in the mail? Instead they send out emails. Want to know what I got today?

Email 11:43am: Thanksgiving week + Finals schedule
Email 11:48am: The Student Directory is out!
Email 12:24pm: Winter Student Art Show
Email 4:58pm: Friday message from the Principal

Really? Do I really need to be constantly updated about what's going on at the high school? Do I really need 4 emails in one day?

Helpful or annoying?
ANNOYING!

Thursday, November 20, 2008

christian's demands

Christian is realizing that he does everything around here. So in response he is deciding to take things into his own hands.

Phone call from Christian as I'm coming home from work: "Hey. I have an ultimatum. If you want to come home, you have to come home with chocolate or candy."

I'm lucky I had a bag of dove chocolate with me because it was pretty obvious I wouldn't have been welcome at home without it.

About 20 minutes later, I caught the tail end of Christian's conversation with Richard.

Christian (while covering up the chocolate): "You can have whatever piece of chocolate you want, but I need to have a full glass of water with two ice cubes first."

And then Richard picked up Christian's empty glass and walked into the kitchen.

Daaang, Christian!

this one's for you, jeni

So about a month ago, my friend Jeni sent me the nicest email.

First she gave me a million compliments about my hair (made me feel so good)...

Then mentioned that we have very similar hair (made me feel even better that I'm not alone in the world of not-straight but not-curly hair that does whatever it wants to)...

And finally, she suggested that do a blog post about all the different ways I can do my hair (which sounded like a great challenge)...

So since you are all dying to see way too many pictures of my head, I now present my hair in all its coarse, wavy, thick, crazy, blond-roots-with-brown-tips-y glory.


waterfall in our house?

We've been meaning to make some sort of contraption to hang out bikes in our spare room. We're not ones to actually buy things like that. We make them ourselves. So Christian made a plan. Worked it all out. Went down to Ashley's house to pick up his drill bits. Found studs in the wall.

He just called me at work.

"I hit a water pipe. It's gushing all over."

And then he hung up. I can't wait to hear the rest of the story. Poor guy.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

no desire to run

My family is running a 5k next week. I can't wait to run it, but I have no desire to actually run right now.

I'm supposed to be running 12 miles this weekend with my friends. I can't wait to run it, but I have no desire to actually run right now.

I'm running half of the Cal International Marathon in a couple weeks as part of a relay team. I can't wait to run it, but I have no desire to actually run right now.

Can someone come get me out of bed at 5:30am tomorrow and make me run 3 miles really fast? I seem to be sleeping in instead of running. Glorious, wonderful, completely unproductive sleep. Please. Someone make me run.

Monday, November 17, 2008

ear candy

By the way, I went with orange. It seems to match all my outfits really well. I wonder why that is.

But on to the ear candy of the week. I can't get enough of these songs. I could listen to them over and over. Oh wait. I do listen to them over and over. You should have seen me rocking out on my way home from Hollister last night. I almost missed my exit.



Friday, November 14, 2008

nutcracker



Tonight we stopped by Mervyns' to check out its going out of business sale. Considering everything was 40-70% off, we grabbed some Christmas gifts. And I grabbed a nutcracker. I have always wanted one, but never found any I liked. This little guy was only $10. Good enough for me!

But the best part was the conversation that followed:

Richard: Now we need to get walnuts.
Christian: That thing can't crack real nuts.
Richard: If I throw it at your crotch it will!

Our life would be boring without Richard.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

if i disappear

If I disappear in a couple years, you should look here:







I'll probably be living in this:



And spending my free time hanging out here:


And here:


And probably wearing one of these:


And running here:


Yeah. That's where you'll find me.

Monday, November 10, 2008

life is precious

As I arrived to work this morning, I learned that one of my dear coworkers passed away yesterday. She was a mother and a grandmother. And a dear friend to all of us. Without fail, she brought in gourmet pastries and pies for our birthdays. She was sure to say a cheerful hello to everyone as she walked past our desks on the way to her office. She brought a presence of kindness and optimism into the office. A presence you could feel. And a presence that will be sorely missed. As she battled her cancer, she never let on to any of us how bad it was. She wanted to live her life as Ann, not as a cancer patient. She cheerfully showed up to work every day until last week, so her passing came as a shock to most of us. I think we can all agree that we loved her. We are happy she is no longer suffering, but we miss her already. Life is precious and she showed it in the way she lived.

Friday, November 7, 2008

taking a breath

I'll be honest. Other than my post to Obama and my birthday wishes to Christian, I haven't felt like blogging. I just can't bring myself to write about witty things when my heart is heavy. But I don't want to write about the things that are making my heart heavy, because we are all tired of talking about them and they are dear to my heart--not dear to my blog. But that doesn't mean they are gone.

I don't want to give the impression that all is perfect in the world and that no one was affected by the elections. I don't want to give the impression that there is celebrating going on when we all know that very good people have been directly affected.

But I also know that wallowing in sorrows does no good. Neither does beating a dead horse (or as my family would say it--beating a horse to death). I am a happy person, and even when my heart is heavy, I believe in enjoying life and making the most of each day.

So today I am taking a breath--a deep breath. And I pray that we all try a little bit harder to understand each other and support each other even in our differences. That goes for both sides.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

happy birthday, christian!



Dear Christian,

You make life so fun. You make it hard for me to leave for work in the mornings. You comfort me when I am sad. You are loved by so many and hated by none. You dream big. You work hard. You make me laugh. Thanks for being born.

Love,
Molly

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

do you read my blog, obama?

I would like to give a big congratulations to Obama.

Dear Barack Obama,

You just made history. I am proud to be alive at this time and see our nation elect its first African-American president. We are putting our trust in you to lead this country. I wish you much success in your term as president. Make us proud.

Best wishes,

Molly

Now can someone tell Obama that I wrote him a note on my blog?

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

couldn't sleep?

I know I should be writing about the elections today, but honestly, I'm sick of them. Although it was fun watching the Red Skins lose last night. The Red Skins pre-election home game has predicted the election outcome of 17 of the last 18 presidential elections (2004 was the exception). If this election follows suit, Obama is going to win. (Gobama!)

But today I'd much rather talk about a more pressing matter. Like a bug bite. A measly little bug bite. A bug bite that itches. A bug bite that wakes you up multiple times during the night to remind you that it itches. A bug bite that makes you get out of bed at the same time two nights in a row (seriously--is it on a clock or something?). A bug bite that proceeds to keep you awake for the next half hour. A bug bite that stops itching during the day just to rub it in that it's really just out to ruin your precious sleep. I am thanking my lucky stars that the killer bug only got me once. And I am buying Benadryl on the way home tonight. Down with killer bugs.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

bug weekend

Bugs have certainly been making their presence known this weekend. Some have become my worst enemies. Some have become my best friends.

On Saturday morning, I went on a beautiful run at Sawyer Camp Trail with some of my friends--one of my favorite places to run. Simply gorgeous. We started running before the sun came up and ran an awesome 10-miler. It was raining for about 3/4 of the run, but it was really fun. Throughout our run, we saw probably a dozen deer, dodged way too many brown salamanders, and spotted a little brown rabbit. Before the sun came up, poor Kristin thought she saw a dead deer on the trail, but it was just a fallen branch. Keep in mind my head lamp isn't that bright--shapes can look pretty scary in the dark. Less than half a mile later, I felt a sharp sting as if someone kicked a rock at my ankle. When the pain didn't subside, I quickly realized something was biting me. In the dark, I swatted at my ankle, but the sting remained. As I pulled I my headlamp off my head to get a closer look, I'm pretty sure I swatted something 3/4 of an inch big off my shoe. But with the dark, the rain, and the sharp pain, I never figured out what it was. All that remained was a red dot and quite a sting. Did I mention it hurt a lot? I walked through it for a while to make sure I wasn't going to have any sort of allergic reaction to it and then we continued on with our run. The sting didn't fully go away until about 14 hours later. Today my ankle is very slightly swollen and mildly itches. I'm pretty sure the same kind of bug bit/stung me on my lower back on that trail a couple years ago. The pain was very familiar. I thought it was a bee the last time, but the fact that this time it was dark out and raining leads me to believe it was something else. Stupid killer bugs. This bug definitely falls on my enemy list.

Today, I went to organize my CSA vegetables and realized the turnip greens and broccoli had aphids all over them. I could have carefully washed them, but there are so many places for aphids to hide (and I have so many vegetables in my fridge) that I just threw them away. Aphids gross me out. They are on my enemy list. A few minutes later, Christian and I were lamenting over our new 80's-rocker beta fish (don't worry--we gave him some regular white rocks so that the confetti rocks didn't freak him out). We've had him for almost 3 weeks now and he won't eat anything. We've tried two kinds of beta food (both of which Hungry Hungry Hippo Young Blood gobbles down with no problem). No luck. I made a comment to Christian that betas eat bugs in the wild and that we would have to catch some tiny gnats. And then it hit me! I had just thrown away a feast of aphids. I fed one to to Young Blood and like the Hungry Hungry Hippo he is, he gobbled it up. So I put a couple in Rocker's bowl and for the first time since we've had him, he actually reacted and within a minute gobbled them up, too! So I spent the next 10 minutes pulling leaves out of the trash. I now have a tupperware terrarium of aphids. Aphids are now on my friend list and Rocker's dinner list.

Friday, October 31, 2008

speaking of orange

Happy Halloween! Christian came up with my costume around 12:45am last night. World Jump Rope Champion. I knew these race medals would come in handy today.



Christian is dressing up as a non-showering-pajama-wearing telecommuter. Lucky.

Thursday, October 30, 2008

orange or black?

I can't decide!! Do I want the orange or the black? The orange is vibrant, but the black is beautiful. Oh gosh. This is hard. Puts the upcoming elections to shame.


Monday, October 27, 2008

lunchtime thoughts

1. Fun times--no pictures yet--too lazy. Last weekend we enjoyed Charlie's birthday party on Saturday and the Nike Women's Half Marathon in the city on Sunday. Been too lazy to upload the pictures. Sorry! I promise I will soon. This past weekend I enjoyed hanging out with Ashley--shopping, running, making ice cream, making tomatillo salsa, staying up way too late. Going to San Francisco in hopes of getting some Kooks concert tickets. They were sold out. We weren't surprised. Hanging out with Amy, Ivan, and Diego instead. Primary presentation on Sunday--our class did great, so we pretty much just let them color and roll around on the floor during our class time. They deserved it. Then there were the pumpkin cookies made with yams instead of pumpkins. Yummy. And spending time with Christian. Good weekend, indeed.

2. I'm not as busy as I thought. Remember how I thought my life was ending when I took the job teaching English at night? Amazingly, I haven't felt that way at all. I still spend time with Christian, I am just as productive at my full-time job, and I somehow still get out running a couple of times a week with my girls. Unfortunately, I haven't seen much of my non-running friends. I need to work on that.

3. My CSA vegetables season will end in a month. I am very sad about that. Even though I don't always end up using all my vegetables, I still love them. On Saturday, Ashley and I (ok, really just Ashley) made salsa with my CSA tomatillos and Hungarian Wax Peppers. Yummy. And last night we had pasta with sauteed CSA sweet peppers and parsley, then topped it with fresh CSA tomatoes and fresh basil from my balcony garden. Christian cooked some meat to go with it, which we topped with chopped fresh chiles de arbol (my work custodian gave me that plant) from my balcony garden. Spicy! I'm a wimp, so I had to follow my meal with a glass of milk.

4. My community. I have had a huge urge to be part of my community lately. Everone who lives around us seems so nice. And yet we don't know any of them. Weekends in the park by our house are amazing. Families everywhere. But we're never there. Last night we took a walk around the neighborhood, cutting through the park. The community center was showing a movie outside on a big screen and everyone was there with their kids in Halloween costumes. People had chairs and blankets set up. They were passing out hot chocolate. I wanted to stay so badly, but we hadn't had dinner yet, so Christian wanted to go home. I recommended we just buy elotes, mangos, or tostadas from the vendor for dinner, but we realized we didn't have any money on us. So we went back to our apartment to make dinner and once again left the community in the park. It makes me sad. Still trying to figure out why we didn't just grab some blankets and money and head back out.

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

opera music

I'm not an opera fanatic, but there are a few songs I am absolutely in love with. And tonight I am setting up my laptop in my room so that I can fall asleep listening to "Mir is der Ehre widerfahren" from Der Rosenkavalier. It is beautiful and calming. It's a love song, but other than that I have no idea what it's about. No matter, though. It is beautiful.

And since Christian is off playing soccer, I can fall asleep to music. Which means I have to get in bed right away before he gets home.

Sunday, October 19, 2008

overheard

I love reading the things that Kaylynn overhears, so I thought I'd share one as well.

I was in Marshalls yesterday. It was hopping. As I was waiting in the unusually long check-out line, the lady behind me said very matter-of-fact-ly, "Well, you sure don't see a recession here, do you? This place is packed!"

Discount store abnormally packed = no recession?

I think she needs to rethink her logic.

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

birthday gifts

Since you're all so curious about my birthday gifts, here they are! These were the highlights of my birthday!

First--The gloves that fell from my sun visor. I love them. So soft, so cute. Why the heck is it still warm outside?

Second--My ESL students threw me a birthday party! Did I mention I love them? One of them found out my birthday was on Tuesday and he and his wife orchestrated the whole thing. A sheet cake (with my name on it!), soda, tuna salad. Awesome. (Sorry about the blurry phone pictures.)


Third--"Vegetable Throne" was the first hint Christian gave me. The only thing I could think of was that maybe Christian had put a gift out on the patio table, since that's where I have my vegetable plants. Turns out he got me new "vegetable thrones"--flower stands! I have been wanting them for soooo long. He freed up my patio table and completely rearranged my plants--down to such detail that my vegetable plants drain into the pots below. He's so smart.

Third--"Rung Chair" was the second hint. I totally nailed this one. Rung? Ladder rung. But chair? Ooh! My little Ugly Doll Bat sits on the ladder rungs all year long. Orange Bat! The other week we were out and about and I saw the orange bat. I told Christian I needed it to go with our black bat, but I forgot about it. And when I got home--sure enough! He got me the orange bat! I love it.

Fourth--Richard came home with another beta fish for me! Complete with 80's rocks. I'm pretty sure I had a pair of Body Glove biker shorts that would have matched those rocks perfectly. Sweet.

I love birthdays.