and the third

For spring/summer of 2007 I moved back to the Villa and in with three Nevadans. Let me tell you - you cannot take the Nevada out of the girl. We partied non-stop! I'm pretty sure I got 4 hours of sleep total during those 4 months....Apt. 35 certainly didn't help.
Gabe came back and I moved down the hall (but Ashley and I still spent most of our time in 64). I was in denial about school starting again, until October when I had to catch up. Oops.
Winter semester I moved BACK in to 64, started dating Slice, got engaged, etc. etc. I left Provo in June, "walked" in August and finished up my last class here. Kind of anticlimactic, don't you think?

At least I've lost all those college pounds.

recap: second year

I went to Vienna and had the best time of my life - rediscovering food, history, culture, and myself. Myself indeed! Twenty pounds more of her! Of course my roommate Maggie was a twig.

Here's my philosophy: if you spend four months in Europe without gaining some weight, you did not enjoy yourself enough. Clearly.

When I returned to the USA and then Provo, a miraculous set of events (about which I have already written) placed me in an apartment with these lovely ladies.

We had a blast together, despite/because of the drama....

It's Official

The period of my life I call "college" ended as quietly as it began.

How did it begin again?

Oh yeah. One day in late July, I came home from work and my mom started crying. She had talked to Angie, who said if I wanted to work at SE I'd have to get my application in, because they wanted someone to start August 1st. I did, so I did.
After many phone calls, an interview and even more phone calls, I left Roosevelt with a car-full of clothes and a tank full of gas.

I came home (at least) every other weekend for the next year.

Can you blame me? I was sending off my best friends one by one -

to Missouri, Taiwan, Japan, Russia, Mexico - and having a pretty hard time of it.

Around the beginning of February I realized that I was, quite literally, becoming a hermit. I had no roommates and almost no friends. It was time for a big change.

So I moved in with these girls

and they started me on the path to re-socialization. We studied, ate, played and planned. One thing that I never planned for was this:

I give you the Most Awkward Picture in the History of Mankind. (I can't believe I'm putting it up, really, except that it's so hideous I find it amusing.....) You're welcome.
This was taken the night Slice came to Provo to say good-bye, after he cooked us a delicious meal and we talked on the couch until *ahem* past curfew.
I gave him a sweet letter and some missionary gifts -along with a very awkward hug- and he cried the whole way home.



things I was doing 5 years ago:
1 - hoping a certain someone would ask me to Prom (he did)
2 - planning Prom
3 - learning songs and dances for our Stagelight spring show
4 - playing in school band, occasionally ditching the pep band to sit with friends at basketball games
5 - ILLEGAL things like vandalizing cars and driving my full 15-passenger van to Uintah games

things on my to-do list for today:
1 - sing at a funeral (done)
2 - catalog/label new books (not done)
3 - laminate posters and newspaper clippings, make vinyl numbers for the lab computers (done)
4 - start Breaking Dawn, maybe
5 - go on a date with my Slice
*also on my list: scan some pics for a blog post I've been planning to write all week, write my missionary brother a letter

things I would do with a million dollars:
1 - buy a really old house, fix it up
2 - pay off all our debts and the rest of our schooling
3 - vacation in Europe, Japan, and somewhere with sunny beaches
4 - buy food storage
5 - help build a massive family cabin

places I've lived:
1 - West Jordan, Utah
2 - the White House and the "Glenmoor Hilton" in SJ
3 - 3 houses in Roosevelt
4 - 6 different places in Provo
5 - Schmidgasse 5, 1010 Wien, Austria

jobs I've had:
1 - paper route in Roosevelt
2 - accountant clerk at L&L Motor
3 - BYU Student Employment
4 - Advanced Sales Rep for Vector Marketing....yep, selling knives
5 - Teaching Assistant for Hist 202, Research Assistant on Old English Poor Laws

things I want to be doing in 5 years:
1 - living in a house
2 - traveling (occasionally)
3 - having babies
4 - writing
5 - growing a garden

Thanks Kels


I know it's cliche to be reading the Twilight series

but I am, and they're nowhere near the best books I've read. In fact, the writing often makes me cringe. But it's an interesting tale so I keep reading.

I think it's cruel (also very good business) to put a chapter of the next book into the previous one. One, I get to the end of the book, thinking there will be more to the story and BAM! it's The End of this one. I'm seriously putting off finishing this one just because I know there's a chapter there that doesn't belong to this book. I remembered today that the book's not as long as I've been thinking it is.
Two, I don't want to get hooked on a book before I get it. There are 10 copies of Breaking Dawn checked out right now, 2 overdue, and it would be simply absurd for me to have to get a book from the county library. Cruel, I tell you, cruel.

Also - I've been rooting for Jacob this whole time, I really have. Bella is stupid.
I married my Jacob.


So this is what it's like

I tried to get Slice to write this story, since it's really his story anyway. But after 48 hours I gave up, so you're stuck with my perspective yet again. Sorry.

Sunday night after Orange Julius and BYD, Slice and I went on a drive. It was raining here in town (weird) - snowing and foggy in Neola, we discovered. We returned to do some singing at my parents' house, and were almost there, when two furry creatures stopped us by running in the middle of the road. They were wet and cold and cute, trying to hop right in the car when Slice opened his door. We felt bad for them.

After some deliberation and cars wondering how to get around us, I drove to the house and Slice walked. The puppies followed him. We took them inside, played with and fed them, and called dispatch to notify The Dog Lady. (We've been calling dispatch a lot lately, it's fun unless they hang up on you.) They told us she would call first thing in the morning.

In the meantime, Slice didn't want to leave them with my family overnight. He was being really considerate and such...not to mention he's been wanting a puppy for some time now. We aren't supposed to have pets in our "apartment" but we brought them home anyway, with a kennel, and put them to bed before retiring ourselves. We didn't hear a peep out of them all night long! I was really surprised.
The next morning we brought the puppies along when he dropped me off at work. He was supposed to drop them off at my parents' until The Dog Lady came to take them to their owner. I say supposed to because if you read my last post, you know that he was texting me hours later, stuck in the bathroom with the dang puppies. He even slept in there with them for a little while. And when I called him at lunchtime, he had taken them up to the golf course with him so he could "get some stuff done." Apparently he wasn't getting much done around the house.
(I can testify to that!)

Slice picked me up from work at 3:30, puppies and all, and we finally dropped them off about an hour before we heard from the owner. Slice was still in slippers - hadn't showered or gotten dressed - because he'd had to watch the pups constantly so they didn't make all kinds of messes. When he told me this I laughed heartlessly, thinking Welcome to my future life, and also maybe thinking You are such a sweetheart.

He didn't cry when the owner took them away, but was a bit disgruntled by the lack of gratitude displayed. If you lost two children and someone graciously picked them up, took them home and cared for them for 24 hours, wouldn't you be grateful? If not, you really should be.

After all that my exhausted Slice made chicken noodle soup for a family he home teaches, because the mother had had surgery that day. This picture shows how he makes those fabulous noodles.

And now you know how sweet my husband is, how messy my house is (and why), and how heartless I am when it comes to Slice learning how a mother feels. I think it's really good for him to know, don't you?


The last three texts I got from my husband

1 : Still no call from the dog lady they are in the bathroom I thought they were sleeping but they are not

2: I am stuck in the bathroom with the dogs because they fell asleep in front of the door can you look up a number for the dog lady probably animal control...etc.

3:They are awake but what do I do with them now


He calls it the fam-a-lam

Slice and I have been family-sitting this week while my parents are on a little vacation. Playing mom and dad has definitive advantages, such as:

Free food
Warm house
A bed 3x the size of ours (both good and bad)
Showers stay warm for longer than 4 minutes
Reliable Internet
Bugling at 6:30 every morning to wake us up for family scripture study

Sounds like paradise, right? I mean, who doesn’t want to wake up to an 11-year-old playing Revelie?

The week has also been an eye-opener for Slice, though I’m not sure exactly why, because we’ve been through this before. Maybe because different people are living at home – dynamics always change with different family members – or it’s not summer anymore? I think Slice finally understands why I “play mom” anytime I'm around my younger siblings....old habits die hard.

So I've been thinking, it's impossible for anyone who doesn't come from a large family (in my world, 8 or more children is large) to understand what it’s like to grow up in one. We laugh at the media’s portrayal of food, mansions, vacations and chaos – because kids are NOT cheaper by the dozen.
One of my fondest memories from childhood is nothing more than a snippet. I am standing at our kitchen table, slicing strawberries. My parents, siblings and several neighborhood kids (they just couldn’t stay away) line the kitchen counter, performing various steps in the jam-making process. We are laughing, joking as we work to add food to our storage. As we work through our lives together.

The first time I heard of someone's mother canning on her own I wanted to cry. That image sprang to my mind, reminding me what I love most and what I want for my future family. It's rarely easy, often a struggle in self-control, certainly never boring. Slice has witnessed all this.
All around, I think it’s been an educational experience.

I just screamed (in my head) when I saw this


A day of firsts

If I had known, years ago, that I would marry a professional golfer, I probably would have studied up a bit. Hit balls at the driving range. Insisted my brothers take me golfing with them. It seems unnatural that the wife of a pro could have gone so long without ever playing a game. (Like 21 years.) And after spending most of my life near a golf course! The shame.

I think Slice would like me to be his project someday, that oh-so-glorious "someday" when we "have time" for such things.

Saturday was the first step. Slice had planned a trip to the driving range with his brother (also a golfer) and wanted me to come along. My trepidation was not easily masked. But, I hit some balls, and took some pictures before hiding my face in shame because Slice’s niece was showing me up.

(OK, I didn’t hide my face in shame. She earned it.)

No pictures of me yet, just The Slice and the Amazing Niece.

What a babe!

That night we picked up my parents and paid seven dollars for parking, which was totally worth it. I was angered at the Internet for telling me that Siegfried's closes at 5:00 on Saturdays - when it totally doesn't! I missed out on Schnitzel and Spaetzle because of you!

Anyway, Slice attended his first opera and we enjoyed it, although it was vastly different from all the operas I have seen before. My favorite parts were the random choruses (such rich harmony!) and of course the last scene, in which Zan's aria almost made me cry.

Afterward Slice and I drove home (arrival time: 2:00 a.m.); the closest thing to a review Slice gave me was at the beginning of the drive.

Slice: "I liked the story, and the music was cool and stuff, but it would have been better as a musical."
Me: "Babe, you read the program, the only difference between a musical and an opera is the vibrato."
Slice: "Exactly."

So, from this I gather that Slice doesn't care much for the opera vibrato...everything else is fine.
I know, right?


the reason I can't stop smiling

Remember when I wrote that my bishop's wife is awesome? She is.

And not only because she (and her husband/the bishop) gave us their tickets to the Utah Opera. Four tickets to see Regina tomorrow night:Can I tell you how excited I am?

I love the Opera - it reminds me of Vienna - we get to take my parents, and most importantly, I get to take Slice.
We might even squeeze in some German food. Siegfried's, how I've missed you.


The trusty sidekick

This post is a little late – his birthday was two days ago – but today is also the day he was supposed to enter the MTC, if it hadn't been for this.
Matt and I were not always the best of friends. In fact, when we were little, I couldn’t stand the kid. He annoyed me as only a little brother can annoy his sister.

One day when he was taller than me, I sat down at the piano and said “Matt, sing this with me.” He hesitated a bit. We were both nervous to sing in front of each other – it would take a lot of time and practice to get us over those fears – but it would eventually make a world of difference.
I realized the things that bothered me about Matt were the very things I didn’t like about myself; he was just like me! Only more patient, less critical, more athletic, more disciplined. More spiritual.
(He was also best friends with the younger brother of the boy I liked, so I grilled him every time he returned from their house. It’s very handy to have a sidekick as a spy.)

And so we became friends. I told everyone he was my bodyguard, and took him everywhere with me. It didn’t take long before my friends figured out that he was the cooler sibling. They started planning sleepovers at our empty house – with HIM. They thought I didn’t know what was going on! Ha! I wasn’t angry with Matt, just with my friends who slept at MY empty house the night before MY birthday. Without me.
Once again, I grilled him for info. and he delivered what he could. Awesome.

Finally, during my senior year, we were in the same school together. He was such a cool freshman, most people didn’t even know he was a freshman. We sang on Sunday nights and stayed up late during the week. We went on juice runs, baked late-night pies to eat with ice cream and Mother. We played (life-like) Atari tennis on the Playstation until Dad made us go to bed.
Oh, and one time we broke the entertainment center, so we gave Mom two quarters to help with repairing costs. She couldn’t even pretend to be mad after that.

College was hard, so sometimes Matt came to visit – with Slice, as fate would have it. We talked about boys and school and cars (Matt’s an expert on all three). My roommates and friends said, “If he’s not married when he gets off his mission, I’m calling him every day.”
And I wondered how we would ever find a girl good enough for my brother.

In July of 2007, we took a road trip to St. Louis, Nauvoo, and Church history sites in between. Matt took pictures of the car, mostly to make fun of my parking jobs like this:

But I didn't mind because the trip was fun - and the company was the best. We drove, read Harry Potter #7, camped, and took pictures. And ate out of a salad bag, with waterbottles cut in half for cups. It was great.

Now we're gearing up to say good-bye to this kid (although it's been postponed), knowing that he'll be pretty much the best missionary ever. I envy whoever is next to claim him as a sidekick....or, as the case may be, a bodyguard. The best one you could ask for.

Act One

Scene one
Slice walks into the front room and rolls his eyes. I am curled up on the couch with New Moon, a blanket wrapped around my shoulders to keep warm.

S: “Reading again?”
J: “Yeah.”
He starts to make dinner, chatting (interrupting) me intermittently.
S: “So I just want you to know, I do have self-discipline.”
J: A suspicious thing to say. “Um…okay. Why did you just say that?”
S: “I just wanted you to know.”
J: “Right.”
S: “Well...I only played Zelda on the Wii for an hour, and that was AFTER I finished three quizzes and did some other homework.”
J: “Wow. Good for you.”

Later I join Slice in the kitchen, but bring my book along. He rolls his eyes again.
J: “Aghh!”
S: “What?”
J: “This book is so intense.”
S: “Why?”
J: “She is so stupid! She’s going to drown herself! Also there’s werewolves.”
S: “Huh?”
J: “You heard me.”
S: “Vampires and now werewolves…all that satanic stuff huh?”
J: “Oh, stop. I know that you want to know what’s going on. You can’t even fake it.”

Scene 2
After dinner, Slice washes dishes (bless that man) while I read on the bed.
S: “You’re going to be late for mutual.”
J: “I have to finish this chapter.”
S: “What’s the difference between taking breaks between chapters and taking a break in the middle of a chapter?”
J: “I’m almost done! I only have two pages left!”
S: “You are going to be late for mutual because you’re reading….at least I have self-discipline.”
J: “Excuse me? Fine. Let’s go right now.”

Scene 3
After Mutual. Slice finally takes a good look at my book.
S: "Wow! Have you been reading all day?? You're almost done with that."
Me: "No I did not read all day. I had to WORK, you know."
He calls two brothers while I read some more; we talk and get ready for bed. I’m in a sarcastic mood, though (I think) not more than usual.
S: “So, am I more like a vampire or a werewolf?”
J: “Werewolf, definitely.”
S: “Why?”
J: “Um…you wouldn’t understand. You’d have to read it to understand. I can’t explain.”
(At the moment he’s holding my cold hand with his very warm one. He he he.)

S: “This book is changing you.”
J: “What? It is not. I’m always like this.”
S: “Whatever. So I watched Scrubs today—“
J: “Oh ho! You watched Scrubs AND played the Wii? Self-discipline indeed.”
S: “Hey, I watched it while I was doing math homework. And anyway, there’s a doctor on there named Dr. Dorian. Did you know that?”
J: “Yes I know that. You’ve told me that like 5 billion times.”
S: “Whatever.”


What is this strange taste in my mouth?

I have, ever so reluctantly, joined the texting world.
In my first semester of college I wrote a paper about the evils of technology—specifically the social/historical consequences of cellular phones, and how I never wanted to own one—and after two years of Händy ownership, I am eating my words once again. Yum.
For the record, my dad got a Blackberry for Christmas (that his kids gave him) and upgraded our family plan. This means I no longer have to pay for every text that comes or goes, and therefore should not hold hard feelings against all Senders of Texts.
Should not, I said.
Still, don’t expect a reply within 48 hours.

Over the weekend I participated in an Honor Band conceived by Matt’s friend Ed, which consisted of 8 hours’ rehearsal between Friday night and Saturday afternoon and culminated in a concert Saturday night. Ed spent months picking music, gathering players—I have no idea how he did it—and we ended up with a fantastic group. Probably the best group I’ve ever played with, in fact. I may or may not have cried the first time we played through We Shall Lift the Lamps of Courage.
(Talk about memories! I played that song in high school, thank goodness. I never would have learned it in 24 hours.)
By Saturday night my cheeks were so sore I couldn’t feel them anymore, and my left arm was about to fall off. Turns out, muscles ARE required to play the flute. Who knew?

So my brother called me during rehearsal to ask, “What are you singing for tryouts?”
I sang a duet with him to audition for the local Arts Council’s Bye Bye Birdie. It was completely on a whim, so I didn’t worry about my audition at all.
Until the director called me to tell me what part I got: one of the mothers. The mothers? I’m 21!! She told me they weren’t sure which mother yet, so they didn’t know how many lines (if any) I’d have, and I was like, “How about I just sit in the background with wrinkles painted on my face?”

We watched this video 3 times in a row Saturday night, and laughed every time. It is SO FUNNY.

Doesn't this sound like a blast? I totally want to do it.


As if I needed another reason to hate Guitar Hero

My sleeping-companion and I awoke at approximately 3:30 this morning - 3:30 A.M. - to the blaring sounds of rock music thumping through the wall. It sounded like our in-house neighbor was playing Guitar Hero or Rock Band, LOUDLY. And I was ticked.

We stayed in bed for a few minutes, listening and wondering what to do. (Slice is even more passive in these kinds of situations than I am, so he was reluctant to make a fuss.) First he tried knocking on the wall between songs, a couple times, but nothing happened. The loud music continued. Next, he threw on shoes and a coat and knocked on the guy's door. I could hear it even over the noise as I stewed in bed.
So when he came back with no response, no car-sighting or even lights on, I said
"if you don't call the police, I will."

You do NOT want to mess with my sleep; ask my husband.

Slice called dispatch, and in the meantime pulled blankets into our hall for me to sleep on.
(The hall was the quietest place in the house with the heater going.)
With my headache? Fat chance.

Half an hour later the officer called back and finally came to check it out. After banging on the door and getting no answer, he blazed in to find our (very large) neighbor passed out on the couch. With his TV blasting.

In the six months we've occupied our house, I can count on one hand the number of times I have seen this guy. He's an oil-field guy and a drinker, that's really all I know.

But we still don't know why we heard song after song after song. Is there some feature on Guitar Hero that plays through the entire songlist if it is left idle? Please tell, I won't find out myself BECAUSE I WILL NEVER OWN THE GAME.

And uh....we're thinking about buying a house.


Efficiently inefficient

I used to be a very “work first, play later” kind of person.
Then I got my first office job.

It began as an after-school paid internship (how and why was that considered an internship?) at a local car dealership/service shop. For two hours every school day, I entered purchase orders, filed paperwork, stuffed and mailed billings, reorganized files, completed titlework…I even brought in cookies once in a while.

But I didn’t have enough to do.

So, I started answering phones and running errands. I dusted desks and cleaned dirty keyboards, when I couldn’t stand them anymore. I counted superwash coins, straightened waiting-area seating and posted new licenses. It still wasn’t enough to keep me busy until 5:00 every day. Especially as I got more and more efficient.

My 10-key and filing skills improved; I got quicker at doing title work and better at using the postage meter. Eventually I got to the point where I could finish almost everything Kaye had for me to do in a half-hour or 45 minutes. Then I would sit at my desk downstairs, emailing or revising school papers, and answer phones as they came in. Sometimes I'd save my work until right before I had to go, just so I could race against the clock and see how quickly I could get it done.
Is that a form of job security?

I learned a bit about cars and built my own Toyota Prius online. (This was before Priuses – or hybrids in general – were even popular, just so you know. Before I’d heard of any celebrities owning them. I wanted a Prius as soon as they came out.) This was probably not the best idea, since I worked at a FORD and CHRYSLER dealership and my boss could see what I was doing, but hey, I drove a Hyundai at the time. My soul was already sold.


My favorite and least-favorite thing about office jobs is that I can always find a way to do things more efficiently. I always do my work in less time than my peers. And then sit there, feeling guilty, because I ‘waste’ all that time I saved up and I have nothing else to do. Couldn’t I just be slow? Content with the way things have previously been done? No, and no.

The library is the worst because there are always things to be done, but practically none of them need to be done right now. My time is spent mainly on cataloging, updating and weeding our collection. Regularly rotating our displays.
Oh, and reading internet stuffs.


I'm having a good eyelash day

and I have a live-in personal shopper/fashion consultant named Husband. Did you know?

I was only dimly aware of Slice's opinions about women's clothing until I shopped with him before Christmas. It was our first time clothes shopping together, and I re-decided that our relationship is different from most I've seen. The clothes were for me, but I still felt like the one dragged along while he got excited about stuff. We saw other men being dragged around and I almost said, "How 'bout that Sugar Bowl?"
I didn't want to spend money, he did. We have very different taste in clothes.

After weeks of telling me to, Slice bought (persuaded/forced me to buy) the first pair of "skater shoes" I've ever owned. He also gave me lessons in lacing them up. Thanks to Bret & Laurel!
He also said, "I never thought I would kiss someone who wore Roxy," and I laughed. Glad to fulfill a fantasy....?

My personal shopper bought me everything I 'wanted' for Christmas, including some SWEET black dress boots and tights. He even tells me what to wear when I don't want to decide.


How you know it's the end of Christmas break

Your house is 61 degrees when you get out of bed. The heater was going all night.

You leap for joy when Ki brings your lost gloves to school.

You almost die between breakfast and lunch because, for the last 2 1/2 weeks, you've been eating every two hours.

Your kitchen looks like this:

Yes, that is a suitcase on the stove.

Greetings from the Arctic. I mean Roosevelt, Utah.

(the break was totally worth it)