Sunday, December 19, 2010

all I want for Christmas

I'm just going to say, this has been a really great Christmas season thus far.  And it's about to get better.  Wednesday morning I'm flying home to Utah for a few days and I'm so excited.   

What I'm looking forward to most:

1) Watching the best Christmas movie ever: "All I want for Christmas" 

2) Grandma's Candy Cane Rolls - while Grandma is no longer with us, her recipe still is.  
3) Wearing PJ's all day on Christmas
5) Puzzles and board games
6) Family parties
7) Chillin' with Zoe (the cat)

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

my quiet little life

I'd just like to take a minute to say that I love my life.  While I don't have it all figured out just yet, I'm in love with this moment in time.  I can't quite believe all the little things that make my life rad.  

Today as I was leaving work, I walked by my favorite flowers - still blooming.  And I thought to myself, it doesn't get much better than this.  On the first of December, I was able to wear my favorite mittens AND enjoy a beautiful bunch of Japanese anemones, still blooming their little hearts out.    

Not my picture but I thought you might like a visual. 

So at the risk of sounding smug, I'll keep it short.  Just wanted to say, I'm inexplicably happy with my quiet little life. 

Monday, November 22, 2010

a beautiful day in the neighborhood

Don't you just love fall? Well, I do.  It is a serious contender for favorite season, especially when it's as lovely as here in Virginia.  Today on my walk to 7-11 (you guessed it, a Diet Coke run), it was just so gorgeous that I fished my camera out of my bag and took a few pictures.   


Our neighbor has the loveliest maple tree that has been dropping these beautiful red leaves all week.  And there's nothing quite like walking through fallen leaves on a sunny day.  I love the crisp air and that distinctive autumnal smell. 


 
And with this I bid adieu to funemployment for a while, as I start another temp job tomorrow morning.   

Monday, November 8, 2010

pounding the pavement

You know how last week I was all gung-ho about my job search? Well, everything changed when my temp job ended suddenly on Thursday.  Here I am unemployed again and doing everything that I can to avoid the actual task of applying for a job.  In my defense, there are a lot of things that I have needed to get done that I had put off that I have happily marked off my list.  But the fact remains that job hunting is one of the most odious chores imaginable that just can not be ignored. 

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

life lessons

I am recovering nicely from yesterday's funk and was reminded of a couple of things:  

1) Chocolate makes everything better - everything but bacon, it doesn't need any help.  

2) When you do good things, good things happen.  

Tonight I went to institute*.  It wasn't all that convenient and I considered skipping it, but I went anyway.  The lesson was good.  And afterward, I talked with a friend who, in the course of our conversation, helped me find the passion, direction and hope that I had misplaced somewhere along my job hunt.  It was just what I needed.

* Institute is a bible study class, of sorts.  It's a program within the LDS church for young adults to study the Bible and other scripture.

Monday, November 1, 2010

all in a day

And oh what a Monday it was.  It all started out with the snooze button.  I pushed it 5 times this morning, which meant that I started the day and hour behind schedule.  And when I finally got to work, all the free parking spots were taken.  So, I parked in 2 hour parking - intending to come back in a couple hours and move my car - and promptly forgot.  4 hours later, I suddenly remembered my poor car which at this point had a giant parking ticket tucked under its wiper.  I moved it anyway and knowing that I fully deserved the ticket made my way back to work.  But, not so quick, on my walk back I was stopped by an old man - probably drunk and possibly homeless - who proceeded to tell me how beautiful I was and that I should take that as a real compliment coming from a black man.  Then he showed me the dimes that he had just found on the sidewalk and said that I had made his day.  He was a real charmer and It took some finagling but I finally managed to let him down easy and get back to work.  

Later at work, I found out that the internship that I had been all but promised at EPA is a no go.  Back at home, I'm feeling all uneasy and anxious-like - maybe I'll self medicate with some chocolate fro-yo. 

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

clicking

Since it's been a while since my last post, I thought I'd update y'all on all the fabulous happenings in my life.  This will be short because for the past 2 weeks or so I've been clicking.  You know that temp job I told you about? Well, I'm pretty sure that I mentioned it in my last post and well, this is what I'm talking about.  They call it clicking because that is all we do.  They load 50 attorneys into a large room with computers set up on folding tables and we read document after document and click the appropriate buttons.  It requires a license to practice law and the ability to use a mouse - it's about that simple.  Surprisingly, it's really not as bad as I had thought it'd be.  The hours are long but the pay is good and it really isn't all that boring because the  people I work with are really pretty cool and they break up the monotony of the whole thing.  Oh, and did I mention that the hours are long and my commute is insane?  We work 11 hour days and when you add on my commute (about an hour depending on traffic) on to each end, that makes for one heck of a long day.  So that is why I haven't found much time to blog lately but I think you are just about caught up.... No wait, I forgot to tell you, I'm moving.  Again? yes, but this is the real deal. I could live in this place for months and maybe even longer.  And I am super excited to have my own place again.  (My own place that I will share with 4 roommates.)

I'd stay up and chat some more, but I've gotta get to bed.  

Saturday, October 2, 2010

show and tell

I've had some requests that I get over my photo-phobia (which I realize is a sensitivity to light and not a disinclination to post photos on ones blog) and start posting some pictures of the projects that I've been working on.  So here goes:



Last winter, I took a weaving class.  It was a lot of work and I learned quite a lot.  For my final project I decided to make lace dish towels as a birthday present for my Mom.  Well, I bit off a little more than I could chew and in August (Mom's birthday is in June) they were still on the loom. And though they are now off of the loom and washed, they are still in one 6-yard long piece of cloth.  I still need to cut them apart and hem them, but I'm really pleased with how they turned out.  Here are some pictures I took while they were still on the loom.


Wednesday, September 29, 2010

the temp

One of the first things I did upon arriving in DC is apply with a few temp agencies.  There are loads of agencies that specialize in legal work in the DC area and there are even more attorneys that are unemployed.  Also, there are firms and companies that are looking for temporary workers because they are cheaper.  Gotta love this economy!

So today, I got my first contract and I start tomorrow.  I am relieved.  Although I have a nice little nest egg that I am prepared to live off of for the next while, I have been feeling rather uneasy about the finiteness of this sum and the added income takes the pressure off.  And I'm getting bored and need a change of scenery.  I will most likely hate this job, as it will be document review of some sort and possibly the most tedious task that a lawyer could be asked perform.  However, the beauty of temp work is that it pays alright and won't last forever. 

Monday, September 27, 2010

christmas stocking in August?

That's right, because I'm a planner and I'm also obsessive like that.  So I realized that I left y'all in the lurch.  A while back I had just gotten started with my tale of funemployment when I pulled a to be continued and then got all caught up in the wonders of the golden arches before finishing my story.  I'm sure you've all been on the edge of your seats wondering what happened next and how I got from Fairbanks, Alaska to Washington, DC (er Springfield, Virginia, rather).  And well I'm going to tell you, eventually.  

When I left off I'd just sold my uncooperative car, packed my bags, given away half of my belongings to good will and boarded a plane for Salt Lake City.  Well as you may or may not know, most flights from Alaska to the lower 48 are red-eyes.  I don't know why this is so but it means that the airports are bustling between 11pm and 2am give or take an hour.  So after doing battle with the lady at the Frontier counter, I checked my 4 bags and proceeded to sneak on the rest in my over sized carry-on's.  I was so exhausted that I had little trouble sleeping on the plane and before I knew it I was waking up as we approached Denver.  And then from Denver to SLC I flew on the smallest plane I had ever been on - this is where I put in my plug for Dramamine, it's my miracle drug.   

Back in SLC it was sort of like my whole Alaskan experience was just a dream... but maybe that's just because I had just seen inception and had lost my spinny top toy along the way....hmmm.  Anyway, it was good to be home and especially nice to have all my sisters at home (or near home, at least).  There was lots of good shopping and eating and crafting to be had.

Finding some time on my hands I embarked on a project, Christmas Stockings.  And as with all good projects, this project was booth pertinent and useful but required careful planning.  Our family's stockings were seriously dated and as we recently grown in number it seemed like a logical time to make new ones.  We set out for inspiration at the local fabric stores.  And I fell in love with this lovely cream wool (see previous posts about my obsessions with wool).  It's a fabulous herringbone weave and like I said I love it.  We took it home and washed a couple times in hot water to thicken it up a bit and paired it with corduroys and Christmas prints.  We have plans of embroidering them but we haven't gotten that far yet.  

I'm sad that I didn't think to take pictures, 'cause they're pretty darn cute even unfinished, if I do say so myself.  But as I've said before, I'm just not a picture taking, documentative type of blogger - I'd say I'd work on it, but nah, I probably won't.       

Friday, September 24, 2010

All's well that ends well

Day 2 of fall and I'm getting the distinct impression that it is fact getting hotter and not cooler here in Virginia.  I know I've migrated significantly southward but I sort of thought that I'd still be in the Northern hemisphere, where, you know, we all are supposed to be getting ready for winter.  So yes, it's hot here and it's made me a tidge cranky.

But things aren't all bad here.  Earlier in this week I was fortunate enough to join my friend Kellee, who just happened to have an extra ticket, to see the Shakespeare Theatre Company's, All's Well That Ends Well (AWTEW).  I'm pretty sure, that she told me we were going to see Much Ado About Nothing, one of my all time favorites (right up there with King Lear and A Mid-Summer Night's Dream).  So I was a little confused when on our way to the theater I kept seeing posters for AWTEW.  However, I was not disappointed with the performance.  It was really well done.  And not all that familiar with AWTEW, I quite enthralled trying to figure out how it was all going to work out.  Though I think the audience was in the general opinion of, "What exactly does Helena see in this dude Bertram?"   

The theme of the play is, as you might be able to guess, is: all's well that ends well.  And it has lead me to wonder... is that really true? In the end, is all that matters is the results? Does process only serve the end?  At the end of the day (or maybe I should say, play), I don't know whether to happy for Helena that she successfully tricked her beloved into having her or appalled by self-serving manipulation of the jerk that she allowed herself to fall in love with.  

Alas, tis but a silly story.  And all this typing has made me seriously thirsty - gonna go get me a super-big gulp before I pass out from exhaustion.       

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

An Ode to McDonald's

I learned to love McDonald's while living in Finland.  I had previously looked upon the golden arches with total disdain and turned up my nose to their greasy mass produced food.  But in Finland, I found comfort it's the sheer Americaness.  

Today, I found myself on the verge of a melt down - my brain was in a tizzy, I just couldn't cope with the enormity of the issue at hand,  I could feel my breath getting faster and shallower and I knew it was time to get out of the Barnes & Noble and find another place to work on my job search.  

I found my way to a McDonald's - which by the way, had wi-fi - Hallelujah! And as I sat down with my cheeseburger, fries and diet coke (all for less than $4.00), I began to find my breath again.  Ahh McDonald's, no matter where I go, there you are.  And maybe that's what's so comforting about McDonald's after all.  Consistency.  Be I in Rome, Turku, Krakow, White River Junction, Verona, Fairbanks or Springfield - McDonald's has always been there - a place to sit with an icy cold Diet Coke and collect my thoughts.  

Monday, September 20, 2010

Greetings from Springfield

Springfield, Virginia, that is.  That's right, I did it.  I moved to Virginia.  And I am so glad that I did.  

It's been over a month now since my job ended and since then I have been living up the funemployment.  I spent my first week of funemployment packing and tying up loose ends in Fairbanks before flying south to SLC.  

The largest of those loose ends was my car.  I had to unload it before I left and it seems that I had the least desirable car in Fairbanks.  Turns out, nobody likes little cars with standard transmissions in Alaska.  Or at least, they aren't willing to pay much for them.  After accepting that I was going to take a big loss on the car and dropping the price considerably, I was finally able to find a buyer.  No sooner had I found said buyer than my car decided that in protest it would overheat on the highway on a Saturday evening.  Why do cars always break down on Saturday night? [grumble, grumble]  

Well, all's well that ends well and I was able to sell my car and all my stuff packed just in time to catch my flight home.  (Special thanks to my dear friend Melanie who helped me clean and got me to the airport - you're awesome!)    

to be continued...

Friday, August 27, 2010

I'm back in Utah again and I'm not sure exactly how I feel about it.  Returning home is always bitter sweet.  I love hanging out with my Mom and my sisters, working on projects and family dinners.  Yet I am also confronted by harsh reality that my family has changed and I have changed and I don't quite know how I fit in here.  I have recently come to the conclusion that I get along with my family a lot better when we don't live in the same state.  It is a sad reality but I have gotten so used to having my own space that I find that I don't really play well with others.  Turns out, I can be really mean to those I love  - and I hate that about myself.   

Alaska feels so far away, like it was only a dream.  I do miss it and the great friends that I met there (I do hope our paths cross again).  But it was time to move on - to new things - new people to meet - new places to explore.  

Friday, August 13, 2010

Freaking out a little bit

So tomorrow is my last day of work and I'm freaking out a little bit.  Truth be told, I've been ready to be done for a while now but now that it's here, I don't know if I'm ready for unemployment and the adventures that lie ahead.  So much so that I just ate 3/4 of a $25 pizza.  Goodness, Domino's is expensive up here. 

I'll sure miss this view.
 

No sense in fighting it, bring on the funemployment!
 

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Scotland on my mind

Today I entertained the idea of going back to Scotland.  (I visited briefly in 2005.)  Listfull daydreams of grey skies, green hills, and all things woolen kept creeping into my head, impeding all productivity.

It all started with the Fair.  I went to the Tanana Valley Fair last night and the local pipe band was playing - I'm a sucker for bagpipes.  I don't know which I like more the music, the kilts or those darling shoes pipers wear.  I became acutely nostalgic for Scotland.  

And, fairs mean livestock, sheep and goats and chickens and ducks and sheep and cows and sheep.  All the adorable, neatly groomed farm animals feed my fantasies of snug cottages with sheep grazing on green hillsides.  I have this dream of raising my own sheep, and using the fleece to create all sorts of lovely knitted, woven and felted goodies.  (I don't know that I would enjoy the reality of such an operation as the idea of it - so I think that it will stay a dream for a long long time.) 

If the fair weren't enough, I found the most painfully fabulous shop online today.  It took me a while to figure out where it was based but as soon as I realize it was Scotland, I spiraled into an unseemly obsession with returning to the land of my ancestors and immersing myself in fiber arts.  


Is not this the most delectable hot water bottle cover you could ever imagine?

I don't know what I would even do with a hot water bottle let alone a hot water bottle cover, but I want it. AND THEN, I want to know how to make it AND THEN I'll make dozens of lovely variations AND THEN I will live happily ever after...  

It's all quite logical really. 

(Have I mentioned how obsessed I have become about knitting? weaving? felting?  Let it be a cautionary tale to any who dare contemplate moving to Alaska, extreme northern latitudes can drive a person mad.)

And let's talk about this cushion, I covet it.  Makes me want a loom real bad so I could create beautiful tweeds like these. *sigh*

All my lusting over woolens has led me to conclude... unfortunately it appears that all rational thought has ceased and all I can think about is SHEEP and WOOLENS and SCOTTISH COTTAGES. 

Tuesday, August 10, 2010

don't waste your time sounding it out

Hi, my name is Maggie and I'm a bad speller.  It's true, I am helplessly strung out on spell check.  I absolutely LOVE that facebook and blogger automatically check my spelling for me.  And while many of my spelling errors are due to laziness and sloppy typing, there are a couple of words in particular that I really struggle with.


1) Tomorrow - I think that I unlearned how to spell this word when I learned Finnish.  Finnish unlike English is phonetic and like other phonetic languages uses specific vowels for specific sounds.  English does not.  The word tomorrow is particularly troubling because while it feature 3 distinct vowel sounds, it's redundant use of the letter "o" is utterly bewildering.  I have since relearned how to spell this wretched word but every once in a while I try to stick in an in the middle.  How 'bout we all just spell it "tumaaro"? Hmm, that doesn't look right either.

2) Definitely - Another puzzler,  it is my inability to spell this word correctly that has lead me to believe that I use it way to much.

3) Alaska - I really don't know why this is so hard.  For some reason it's just hard to type or something.  I know it's nothing compared to Massachusetts or Connecticut.  Even after living in Massachusetts for a summer, I still struggle with that one.   

Okay, so this is apparently a short list because I can't think of any more.  I think that "tomorrow" and "definitely" plague me because I seem to use them a lot in text messages.  And while the text predictor dictionary is a life saver that prevents me from misspelling, it can't read my mind.     

Thursday, August 5, 2010

Funny Story...

So I told you how I'm sort of obsessed with this little show called "So You Think You Can Dance" yeah, embarassing enough, I know.  Well tonight I was voting for my favorite dancer, Mr. Robert Roldan and well somehow I managed to call a complete stranger upwards of a hundred times.  How'd I make such a rookie mistake, well I'm not quite sure but I may have exposed the limits of my multitasking abilities.  

I was out to dinner with my friend Amanda and as I was playing with my blistering spicy bulgogi when I realized it was after 7.  Time to vote.  But I was prepared, I'd checked Roberts fan page before I left and KNEW that he was number 3 tonight.  So I looked in my call history and found the number for SYTYCD that I'd called last week.  So I started dialing and as usual I don't really listen to hear the message, just watch for the call to go through then hang up and redial.  However, I distinctly remember checking that I had the right number and hearing the SYTYCD message say thank you for calling for dancer 3.  So I kept calling and calling and calling and calling.  I rode to the ATM with Amanda, I came home, I helped her move some stuff into her car, I watched some SYTYCD, I made some instant pudding.  All the time dialing and redialing and redialing.  

But around 8:55, I looked down at my phone and I relized that I'd just dialed a 907 number.  907 is the area cod for Alaska.  Who had I just dialed?  Well it turns out that somewhere along the way, probablly while wisking instant pudding with one hand, dialing with the other and watching tv, I'd started redialing this guy who'd inquired about buying my car off Craigslist.  

My guess is he probably won't want to buy my car after receiving upwards of a hundred calls from me in the space of an hour.  Psycho much? At least I don't know him right?  Take this as a warning, look before you dial and beware the spicy pork bulgogi.   
   

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

SYTYCD

I think that we can all agree that summer is a pretty lovely season.  But you know what I really love about summer? Besides the sunshine, bbqs and popsicles, it's So You Think You Can Dance.  It's pretty much the best thing on TV in the summer (low standard, I know) but I sort of live for it each summer and it's become somewhat of a tradition.  My sisters and I watch it and rehash the performances and results each week.   

We're coming to the end of this season and it never fails to stay interesting.  And last week was just AWESOME! If you haven't been watching, you should know that this season has been plagued with and alarming number of injuries requiring contestants to drop out of the competition and allowing others to stay longer than they likely would have - it's been a bit frustrating to say the least.  Luckily, my favorite dancer, Robert Roldan, has managed to avoid injury and elimination and is still in the competition.  

I love Robert because he's got a really strong presence on stage: quirky and strong and handsome and skilled.  He's young but manages to look a bit more manly than the other boys on the show.  Roberto won me over early on in the season and I've been doing my darndest to keep him on the show ever since.  I'll be voting like mad again this Wednesday.  I consider myself a bit of a super fan because I vote before the show even starts.  Because I have a Utah phone number, I have to vote with Utah which for me in Alaska is 7-9 and the show doesn't starts til 8 up here.  

If you watch, who's your favorite? I really like all of the final 4 and even a few of those who have already left. 
   

Monday, July 19, 2010

my biggest PET peeve

My all time biggest pet peeve ever: dogs named Maggie

I don't know if you have ever spent time with a dog that shares your name but it happens to me all the time.  For some reason the name Maggie is generally reserved for dogs and maternal figures in 80's tv shows and movies.  And you probably haven't ever thought about it but when there is a dog in the house, the most common word to come out of anyone's mouth is that dog's name.  It's a constant: Maggie ...Maggie ...the ...Maggie ...ummm... Maggie ...like I was saying ...Maggie .....Maggie, No!..... Maaaaaaagie. And then there's the tone in which the dog's name is said.  While it often slips in to conversation about the dog in a calm conversational tones, every conversation seems to be punctuated with shrill exclamations and of my name.  And inevitably that dog is going to get in trouble and then I get to hear my name yelled throughout the house in tones of disgust or bellowed in low tones of disappointment.  Not to mention the baby talk and cheerful coaxing tones for which I find use of my name the most annoying.  I've learned to tune it out, but eventually someone will use it in reference to me and I look like an idiot - not responding to my own name.  As my sister Ashley would say, it's "annoying as hell"!  So, when I'm introduced a dog named Maggie and everyone laughs and thinks it's so funny, I laugh, but I really wanna crawl under a rock and die.   

If you have a dog named Maggie, I want you to know that I do not hate you and I do not hate your dog.  But I'm not so happy about your choice to name your dog Maggie.  And a little advice for all potential dog owners, consider carefully the name that you choose for your new pup, might I suggest Spot.  
       

Thursday, July 15, 2010

my latest obsession

So I kind of have this thing for dark chocolate - I love it. 
I like chocolate to much to see it diluted with an excess of sugar and dairy.

I also enjoy a good kitkat bar from time to time. What's not to love?  They're crispy and fun to pull apart and have one of the best jingles in the candy world.  (And they share a name with the Kit Kat Club - notorious sex club in Berlin - which I find humorously ironic.)  

Until now I just put up with their sugary sweet milk chocolate, but not anymore.

kitkat dark
I'm sort of in heaven.  This may just be the best candy that you can buy in a gas station convenience store in Fairbanks, Ak.

I know that is a pretty high standard but this little guy is a worthy contender.

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

a girl with a plan*

I've been fielding questions lately about my plans.  As many of you may well already know, my job here in Fairbanks is just a 1 year sort of gig.  And that year is almost up. Though I had considered leaving sooner - every week or so I throw up my hands in frustration with my life and threaten to bust out of this joint - I have no reason to leave early.  My job is great and Fairbanks is really quite a pleasant place. (Note: it is pleasant in the summer, not so much once it turns cold and dark.)


My end date is scheduled for August 27 August 13, at which time I will pack my Marry Poppins bags, jump on a plane and head home (not to stay but for a visit).  I haven't been home since Christmas and I desperately miss our cat Zoey, my mama's flower garden, Sunday dinners and my cute sisters.  As an added perk I will travel back in time.  Just as the weather up here has turned drear, through the marvels of modern technology and meteorology,  I will be transported back to summer.  Though the days will be shorter, I am sure that they will be lovely.   

What's next? you may ask.  And this is where my plan gets outright adventurous.  After a few lovely weeks at home, I'm going to drive my little car across the country (never done that before) to our nation's capital.  That's right, I'm going to Washington DC.  I don't have a job lined up yet but I feel strangely confident that DC is where I should go and look.  DC is my most favoritest place I have ever lived and I've been pining to get back there ever since I left.  Thankfully I have a sweet and gracious Aunt who has offered to put me up for a bit while I look for a job.  

And if that doesn't work out, I have no shortage of relatives in interesting places.  So don't be surprised if you find me on your doorstep someday - I'll try and call first, but I make no promises.  

Wish me luck!


* all plans are subject to change at any time, because, above all  

I plan to be surprised.   

Wednesday, June 30, 2010

caution: dreams defered may become unstable

In my high school creative writing class, we studied the Harlem Renaissance.  And thus I was first introduced to the poet Langston Hughes.  I really liked his poems and few of them have stuck with me through the years.  Today the word of this poem came to mind as I pondered some of my hopes and dreams that are continually out of reach. 

Dream Deferred

What happens to a dream deferred?
Does it dry up
Like a raisin in the sun?
Or fester like a sore--
And then run?
Does it stink like rotten meat?
Or crust and sugar over--
like a syrupy sweet?
Maybe it just sags
like a heavy load.
Or does it explode?

- Langston Hughes

Maybe there's a spot at Yucca Mountain for all these dreams I keep carrying around.  (You know, if that nuclear waste deal doesn't go down.  I am in no way suggesting or condoning the storage of volatile explosives with nuclear waste.)

Monday, June 21, 2010

in the land of the mid-night sun

Happy Summer Solstice everyone!

I'm all sorts of excited for summer AND that it's going to start getting dark again.  I don't mean to be a hater, but all this sunlight is messing with my circadian rhythm and this lack of sleep is catching up with me.  I am dragging today (and a sorta strung out on diet coke).

So I was successful in getting myself out of the house this weekend. Maybe a little too successful....  But here in Fairbanks, solstice is a big deal and I have to live it up because this is my chance to experience the Midnight Sun festivities. 

Saturday, June 19, 2010

Weekend

Goal for tomorrow (actually technically today): get out of the house. 

Since I got back from my vacation last Saturday night, I have been a total home body.  Not that there is anything wrong with that, but it's time I got out a bit.  So tomorrow, I will force myself to go to the gym and use that membership for which I pay so dearly.  I will go to the farmers market - and buy something (maybe another plant).  Maybe I'll even make an effort to be social and call up a friend, but let's not get carried away.   

Most importantly, I will NOT spend the day in bed or in my pajamas.  

But right now, I think that I'll go hang some blankets over my windows and try and get a little sleep before the sun comes up any minute now.   

Saturday, May 29, 2010

sunset

Last night I met a friend at Creamer's Field (bird refuge here in Fairbanks) for an evening stroll.  The night was lovely, the bugs were thick and just about mid-night the sunset was amazing.  


Like I said in my earlier post, "bed? eh, maybe later".  I usually regret my late nights the next morning but not so much to keep me from staying up the next night. 

Friday, May 28, 2010

may flowers

The choke cherry trees are blooming all over town.
  

They smell so nice and looks so lovely.


And I absolutely love to watch the petals float in the breeze. 

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Seasonal Affective Disorder

So I self diagnosed myself with seasonal affective disorder back in December.  When the days were only a few short hours long, all I could think of was crawling back in bed.  But now that it never gets dark, I am having the opposite problem.  

I'm having trouble persuading myself to go to bed.  It's pretty ridiculous that at the age of 30 I'm having to force myself to get to bed at a reasonable hour.  On the bright side, even with significantly less sleep, I feel pretty great.  Yay for sunshine!

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

sooooooooo good

Way back in the fall, I decided to try my hand at baking bread.  I bought the bread bible and followed her detailed instructions with strict obedience.  My bread was not the light and fluffy loaves that the book promised and while edible and rather tasty, not worth the effort.  Learning to bake really good bread remains on my to do list - the long list, the list of things to do this decade, not this week. 

My goal is fueled by my picky palate.  I really like good bread but it is so hard to find.  One of the things that I hate most about moving is finding decent bread in a new town.  I generally don't venture any farther than the local grocery stores but have found through trial and error that there is a lot of lousy bread on the shelves.  My ideal loaf would be 100% whole grain (no white flour), tasty and the perfect balance of chewy and airy.

Well, I found it.  I found my ideal loaf.  And I can't tell you how happy I am to have really good bread every morning.  It is made by a bakery in Canada called Silver Hills and get this it is flourless.  That's right, it's not made of flour at all.  I didn't really understand how this could be so I did a little research.  Apparently, they start with whole grains (unprocessed kernels of wheat, oats etc.), and then they soak the kernels until they sprout, and then they mash them.  Voila! no flour necessary! They make a lot of different varieties using different combinations of grains and seeds but my very favorite is kamut.  Kamut is the kind of wheat that the ancient Egyptians grew - who knew, right?

From their website I have learned that their bread is only sold in the west coast states and BC.  So if you happen to live in one of these blessed states and you wanna try some mind blowingly good bread - I suggest you look for this and try it.  Am I obsessed? I don't think so, just really really happy to have found good bread.

Interested in trying sprouted bread but you can't find Silver Hills bread? Try Ezekiel Bread (sometimes in the freezer section).  It is also sprouted and quite good.  I especially like their raisin bread.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

inspired; or hoping to become so

I was blog surfing - jumping from blog to blog like tv channels when I came across a quote that gave me pause.  

"Instead of being jealous of your peers, be inspired by what they do."  -Serge Normant

Mr. Normant is a hair stylist.  And with a little googling I have learned that he is THE HAIR STYLIST to the likes of Sarah Jessica Parker and Julia Roberts.  As someone who usually resorts to cutting her own hair and has actually only paid for a hair cut a handful of times in her life, I can honestly say I haven't much personal experience with hair stylists. (By the way, I'm having a very good hair day today and there is indeed something to be said for good hair - possibly invaluable.)  I picture Mr. Normant making this statement in response to one of diva client's wild rant about their lousy, uber fabulous, celebrity life - and it makes me chuckle.

I like this statement because it is good advice.  Life is full of disappointments and surprises.  Often things just don't work out as planned.  And sometimes I look around, see other people enjoying the sort of life that I'd wished for and I get jealous.  The green eyed monster is often accompanied by it's good pal bitterness.  And before long, I'm hosting a 9-course pity party for 1.    

Don't get me wrong I want to be happy for my friends and family members, but sometimes it's hard to be happy for someone when I'm not happy myself.  I acknowledge that this is a myopic and self centered perspective.  Because, if I step away from my personal pity party for bit, it's not hard to see that I am enormously blessed and that another's success or good fortune in no way diminishes my own.    

But it can be really difficult to dismiss these emotions all together - I really like Mr. Normant's suggestion to refocus jealous energy into something positive, inspiration.  It's all a matter of perspective.  And by changing the way I think about things I can more clearly see the good in my own life as well as the lives of those I love. 

Who couldn't use a little more inspiration in their life.  I thrive on inspiration.  While logic guides much of what I do, my logic continually fails me and I am force to lean on seek out inspiration.  I am continually inspired by the example of others, their wisdom and words of encouragement.  Most especially, I receive divine inspiration from my Heavenly Father through the Holy Ghost.  I seek direction from my Heavenly Father daily.  Sometimes it comes through strokes of genius and othertimes through external factors.  

Sometimes the inspiration just won't come.  I see only the obstacle between me and my dreams.  It can feel so hopeless and frustrating.  Elder Christofferson counseled that at such times, prayers of gratitude yield inspiration.  Which I believe is sage advice.  I can't expect to receive answers unless I'm ready to recognize them.  When I am grateful for what I have, my perspectives shifts from what I want to what I have.  By recognizing what I have, I am reminded that God keeps his promises; and trusting in Him, I am empowered to negotiate the terrain before me with confidence.  

So many things in life come down to choices.  I hadn't ever thought that I could choose to be inspired but maybe I can.  So... what if I gave up on jealousy and disappointment, and chose instead to be inspired.  

Wish me luck!
 

Tuesday, April 27, 2010

good fortune

Every once in a while something happens that is just so perfect that you can't quite believe your good fortune.  I'm talking about kind of good fortune that brings a gelato stand to your parent's neighborhood the very summer that you are home studying for the bar exam.  The sort of good fortune that you might call a blessing and then second guess whether such a trivial thing could be divine.  I mean I'd never sincerely pray for a gelato stand to open up in my neighborhood, yet I have many times dreamt of it.  And if there was ever a time when it might be most appreciated would be the summer I was plagued with the odious task of studying for the dreaded bar exam.  

Such good fortune just came my way.
  

For the past couple years I have been huge fan of a radio show called This American Life, it's kind of hard to explain but utterly brilliant and the next time you have an hour, give it a listen.  I promise it'll be educational, thought provoking and entertaining.  The host of This American Life is Ira Glass and the show is his creation.  



A few months ago I found out that he was going to be coming to Anchorage and I tried to devise a plan to get down to see him, but it was going to be complicated.  So, I sort of gave up on the idea of seeing Ira.  Until one day, I was listening to NPR when I heard that Ira was coming to Fairbanks.  My jaw dropped to the floor (not literally of coarse, but I nearly fell over I was so shocked).  I could NOT believe that Ira would come all the way to little old Fairbanks.  It was like a dream come true (I recognize how geeky I sound and am woefully unapologetic).  And my general opinion of Fairbanks improved significantly - I mean if Ira Glass is going to be coming here, maybe this town is cooler than I thought.

So, I bought my ticket well ahead of time and invited my friend Eva to come with me.  It was really important to find someone who had heard of Ira, and I was glad to find out that my instincts were correct, Eva is a fellow fan of Mr. Glass and his remarkable show.  

While I am familiar with Ira's weekly radio show, I wasn't quite sure what this event would be like but being a super geeky fan as I am, I didn't really care.  All I knew was that Ira is brilliant and I was facinated see whatever he was doing in Fairbanks.  It turned out to be part the making of the show and part Ira's theories on journalism and story telling.  And there were moments where it felt a little bit like a stand up comedy routine - everyone was laughing A LOT.  He shared clips from past shows and talked about the making of the show.  I was really impressed by his insights about story telling.  Story telling is a really significant form of communication and and fascilitates learning and understanding.  Through effective story telling, it is possible to experience vicariously other times, places, interactions and emotions.  The event is really hard to explain but to summarize, it was brilliant and thought provoking.  And extremely good fortune.

Friday, April 23, 2010

Earth Day

Today being Earth Day, I've been thinking about this amazing planet that we live on.  I'm definitely a fan of Earth and I want to do my part to make sure that it remains a nice place for us to live for a long time.  So, I've been thinking of things that I could do/improve on to help out the planet.  I'm really good at coming up with excuses and sometimes I just get overwhelmed.  But there are a few things that I've been meaning to change for a while now.  

1)  Start recycling.  I've been so bad here in Fairbanks, my excuse is that I'm only here temporarily but that is a lousy excuse for doing something I know is wrong.

2)  Eat less processed foods and less animal products.  I've been pretty good lately about limiting my meat and dairy lately.  I won't cut it out entirely but I think that I could be more careful.  The toughie is going to be giving up my frozen entrees.  I have gotten in the habit of bringing a lean cuisine (or equivalent) to work with me for my lunch.  I'd really like to get into the habit of preparing my lunches the night before - less packaging, less mystery ingredients, less weird chicken. 

3)  Drive less, walk more.  This one's convenient because it is once again pleasant to walk about outside without any special equipment.

4)  Read more, less tv/computer.  Also easier now that it's beautiful outside.  I do enjoy reading good book in the sunshine. 

5)  Plant a garden.  I actually started this last Saturday and I admit that it is a bit of a science experiment but even if it doesn't yield anything edible, it's a learning experience.

Well, that's about it for now - no more excuses.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

final day on the island

On our fourth and final day on the island we got up early, packed our bags and checked out of the not so swanky Royal Grove Hotel.  We grabbed some breakfast at a convenience store on our way to our car.  Our flights didn't leave until late that night so we had a good part of a day to explore the north shore.  We drove north and stopped at the Dole plantation where we ate giant pineapple confections and learned some interesting facts about pineapples.

When we had finished our cones we continued on our way to the north shore.  We stopped in Haleiwa and did a bit of shopping and (upon multiple recommendations) checked out Matsumoto's shaved ice.  As we were still digesting our Dole Whips, we decided that we would come back later.  We continued north to Shark's Cove (don't worry Abbey, we saw no sharks and it was really to shallow for sharks of any threatening size).



I'd read that this was an excellent snorkeling spot but we ended up just wading through the tide pools.  The water was so clear that we had a pretty good view of the fish while staying dry from the waist up.  You wouldn't know it from the picture but it was a rather rainy day - we were glad that it cleared up for a bit so while we were in the water.  

After we'd had our fill at Shark's Cove we went back to Haleiwa and had lunch at a fabulous little place called Grass Skirt (another fabulous recommendation).  I had a hebi sandwich - the hebi (which I learned from the owner is similar to mahi-mahi) was caught fresh that morning and it tasted absolutely delish.


Before we headed to the airport we checked out all the shops (didn't buy anything but I generally like the looking better than the buying).  And we went back to Matsumoto's for their famous shaved ice.  I think that I would have liked it a bit better if it had been a hot day, but it was pretty good.

It was a really good trip. I was so glad that my mom could meet me over there.  She is so good to me and we had a really good time exploring Oahu together.  I should also mention that she was a really good sport to do all the driving and was really patient with my poor navigational skills. 


I'm pretty sure this was the best birthday present that I could have given myself this year and for that I should thank myself - Thanks! I really needed that.    

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

day 3 - Easter

Our third day on Oahu just happened to Easter - absolutely the least traditional Easter of my life but definitely memorable.  It also happened to be General Conference* weekend and though we couldn't figure out how to watch it live, thanks to the miracle of the internet, I've been able to listen to it since I got home.  

So we didn't go to church but we did go to brunch at the Marriot Hotel - a couple blocks from our stellar bargain hotel.  It was oh so yummy, they had this bread pudding stuff that made me weak in the knees.  (I have a weakness for just about anything called pudding.)  

After that we went to go see Queen Emma's Summer Palace but as it was closed we wandered around the garden for a bit.  On our way there we happened upon the Punchbowl Cemetery, where (I learned later) casualties of Pearl Harbor are buried.  It was really pretty but as it started to rain as soon as we got out of the car, I took no pictures.  

In the afternoon, we went to Pearl Harbor where we toured a submarine and the USS Missouri - aka the Mighty Mo.  Now those are some crazy huge guns! 

It was on this battleship the we signed the peace treaty with Japan that ended World War II.  
In the distance you can see the USS Arizona Memorial.

In the evening  we decided to go see the Temple.  The Temple was closed but the visitor center was open.  We met a very nice sister missionary who shared this video of Elder Hollands testimony of the atonement.  It is such a good reminder of the reason that we celebrate Easter.  Please watch it.

This Easter Sunday I was reminded of the great sacrifices that have been made on my behalf and through which I am blessed.  My blessings are truly countless.  I am so thankful for those who have heroically defended this country, placing their very lives at stake to preserve the freedoms I enjoy.  And yet, the greatest sacrifice was made our Savior Jesus Christ, through whom we all may live again and return the presence of our Father in Heaven.  I am overcome with gratitude as I ponder the implications the Savior's infinite atonement.  I know that Christ lived and died for us, that he conquered death and that he will come again - I look forward to that day.  

Happy belated Easter!

* twice a year the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has a general conference in which the Prophet, Apostles and other church leaders address the world.

Monday, April 19, 2010

day 2

On my second day of vacation I went snorkeling here. 


Hanauma Bay  - it's a bay that formed in a volcanic crater.  It was insanely crowded but we saw some really cool fishes.  The coral creates a sort of maze and at times I got totally trapped between fellow snorkelers and the coral - but it was cool and fish didn't seem to mind all the crazy people bumping into everything and gawking at them, I guess they're used to it.  Also it started raining while we were snorkeling - cool sensation to have water falling on your back while your face is submerged in the ocean.  

After snorkeling we drove around to the windward side of the island and saw some really impressive views.  


I don't think the pictures really capture it that well but it was absolutely beautiful. 

While we were still in our swim suits we headed over to Waikiki for some sunbathing and people watching.  After dinner and a disappointing experience at the International Marketplace (not my kind of retail therapy) we turned in early - the sun and water had worn me out.

Thursday, April 15, 2010

travel log - day 1

I apologize there will be no pictures from my trip in this post. You see, I got a new camera a month ago and I am still figuring it out.  While I managed to download the new software to my computer, that is as far as I've gotten in the process.  I really thought that it was going to happen last night but alas, I found myself uncharacteristically tired at 9:30 and in a state of bewilderment decided to be mature about it and go to bed even though it wasn't even dark yet (might as well get used to it now). That's right, it's still kind of light out at 10pm these days - very weird.     

But I will take a moment here to tell you all about some of the highlights of my trip.

We had 4 lovely days on the island of Oahu and we saw a lot in that time.  I'm not one to lounge on the beach all day - I get antsy and honestly, I just can't take that much sun.  And well, our hotel wasn't the sort of place that you'd want to spend more time than you have too. (btw, let me know if you are looking for a dirt cheap place to stay in Waikiki, because I found one.  The location is great and the room was clean - if that's all you care about, this place is a bargain.)

Day 1: We got up early and walked down the beach.  We wandered around, went to nice little aquarium, checked out some of the fancy hotels. (Note: don't confuse the Royal Hawaiian with the Royal Grove, they are booth pink, but the similarities end there.  We stayed at the Royal Grove, not the Royal Hawaiian and probably saved thousands of dollars, but our lobby just didn't compare.)

In the afternoon we went to the Polynesian Cultural Center - which I really enjoyed.  I learned how to make coconut milk (and by learned I mean in the sense that I learned how to make wedding cakes by watching Martha Stewart make wedding cakes - now that I've seen someone else do it, there is a chance that in a pinch I could do it myself.).  I also learned that I like Hawaiian music and poi in very small quantities.  The very best part was the show, Ha the Breath of Life.  It was really impressive - lots of dancing - hard to explain but I highly recommend it.

Monday, April 12, 2010

little miracles make life sweet

I had a moderately successful Saturday.  I spent most of the day cleaning my room - in hopes that in the cleaning I would find my rogue W-2 form.  I wasn't quite frantic yet, but I knew I had to find it soon or figure out how to get a duplicate.  I had just about given up when I had to leave to go do my visiting teaching*.  My companion is a rockstar and is really good about making sure we get it done. (note: the month isn't even half over here folks.) We had some nice visits with the a couple of the girls that we are assigned to and talked a bit about personal revelation.  In the middle of one of these said visits, a thought popped into my head: you need to look in the drawers of your night stand. When I went home I opened the top drawer of my nightstand and within seconds, I had my W-2 in hand. 

Maybe I just needed to step away from the problem for a minute for my brain to remember where I'd put that little piece of mail months previously. However, I'd rather give credit where credit is due - it was the spirit that helped me remember.  I'd been looking for this form for a quite a while but the spirit helped me find it when I needed it, when I was doing what I was supposed to be doing.  

So now I can say that my room is clean (disaster zone downgraded) and my taxes are done.  Taxes may be a lame way to spend a Saturday night but it feels really good to finally have them done.  (Added bonus: my tax refund will more than pay for my birthday trip that I took last week.)  

I am grateful for the miracles great and small that make my life sweet and give me hope.

* The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints has a program called visiting teaching; in which the women of the church are partnered up and assigned other women to visit every month.  It is a simple system to watch out for everyone and to learn from one another.  

Friday, April 9, 2010

spring is on it's way

Things sure change fast up here. When I left for Hawaii last week it was still pretty snowy, though the days had gotten much longer and slightly warmer.  I came back to soggier, muddier and much less frozen landscape.  Spring is on it's way. The geese have returned, the river is thawing and the ice sculptures around town are crumpling. 

Oh, and my trip was AWESOME! I didn't take many pictures but I hope to get a few of them onto my computer this weekend.  So get ready to be insanely jealous.  For now, I'll just say that Oahu is maybe the prettiest place I have ever been - it most definitely exceeded my expectations.

Monday, March 29, 2010

redesign

So I realized that my blog needed some sprucing up. And as much as I'd have liked to use images of living blooming things, snow still seems more appropriate for the time being.  However, this white fluffy stuff is hardly characteristic of what's outside right now.  Ours is a dirtier crustier variety now that the days are getting longer and warmer.  Things are indeed starting to melt and it's kind of turned the whole town into a sloppy mess.  

On a brighter note, I am oh so excited to ditch my hat and enjoy some much needed sunshine in Waikiki later this week. Can't hardly wait!

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Spring Fever (revisited)

Thanks Mark Twain for summing it up so nicely.  (found this pic here.)  I am sick sick sick of all this dirty slush and ice. And my heart is aching for  - I just don't know what. 

Maybe my heart wants a trip to Hawaii. Well, that's what it's getting, so I sure hope that it is appreciative. 

Monday, March 15, 2010

near fatal case of spring fever

March can be a dark month for me.  I know, it's ironic because it is in March that it finally starts getting lighter.  We are almost to the equinox and although the daylight is appreciated it is still decidedly wintery and cold.  I made it through the dark days of December, the bitter cold of January and the fleeting sunshine and warming temperatures of February that hinted at spring..... yet spring is a long way off.  While there may be crocuses and daffodils blooming some places, our landscape is still blanketed in snow and ice - stuck in the doldrums of winter. 

So I finally booked my trip to Hawaii and I leave in 15 days.  I think that a weekend away will do me good. I look forward to walking barefoot on the beach and getting a little sun.  

Friday, February 26, 2010

ahhh snap!

Cold snap that is.  Just when I was getting used those positive temperatures we plunged right down to 20 below.  I know, I know, I live in Fairbanks, Alaska and I should learn to suck it up but I think I'll whine about it for a while first.

Every morning my radio turns on at 6:30 and I listen to NPR as I drift in and out of consciousness until I persuade myself to get out of bed.  It's funny, sometimes my dreams and the news get oddly mixed up - like I can't remember if I heard it on the radio or dreamed it and if I heard it, did I hear it right. Anyway, I listen for temperature so that I plan my day accordingly.  On mornings that it is 20 below I am inclined to roll over and pull the covers over my head until I remember that just because it's cold outside doesn't mean that I don't have to go to work.  It's a sad reality some mornings and it requires some special planning in the wardrobe department.  I pull out the wool socks and forgo my cute wool coat for my ginormous michellan man coat (a.k.a. the sleeping bag with sleeves). A good hat, mittens and a scarf are a must. If it's any colder than negative 20, I might put on leggings under my pants.  All this so that I can walk from my house to my heated garage, drive into town and walk to blocks two the court house.  

I had just gotten used to heading off to work in my wool coat and some mittens.  The last few days I hadn't even needed to plug in my car.  But most of all I love being able to go outside and breathe without icicle forming in my nose and not feel like my skull is going to crack open from the cold. 

Alas, winter isn't done quite yet.  Here's to hoping that this cold snap doesn't last long.

Monday, February 22, 2010

a little bit of culture

Today I went to the symphony - "what?" you say, "does Fairbanks have a symphony?"  Why yes it does.  My dear friend Eva plays in the Fairbanks Symphony and asked me earlier this week if I'd like to come see their upcoming concert (today).  I decided to go because a) I could use a little culture and b) Eva is super awesome and it's always more interesting when there is someone you know performing.      

So like I said I went to support a friend and take in some local culture and I was totally blown away - totally overwhelmed. It was amazing! The concert hall is beautiful. The musicians were brilliant and they had this guest performer, Cellist - Zuill Bailey, who was beyond awesome. Words can't explain, so if you're curious check out his website. 

http://www.zuillbailey.com/zuill/

And to answer your questions: yes, he played this piece (btw - one of my favorites, I think I cried) AND yes, he is even more gorgeous in person - you should see him play it was QUITE the experience!  If you can't tell, I'm a little bit in love. 

Thank you Eva! I had an awesome experience.

Monday, February 15, 2010

it's no snopocolypse but...

Alas, I will never be the type of blogger with a never ending stream of fabulous pictures.  I just can't be bothered to bring my camera with me all the time and truth be told, my life isn't all that photogenic.  That being said, I went for a walk today after church and decided to bring my camera along.  It was a beautiful sunny day here and Fairbanks and this is what my neighborhood looks like these days.  These were taken around 4:30 - check out how light it is.

We haven't seen much snow this year.  They say we're near record lows but what we have gotten has stuck.  Also, a lot of white snowy looking stuff allover the trees and stuff is actually frost.  

So as you can see, it's still pretty wintry up here.  

And yeah, I tweaked these pictures a bit - I loves to play up the colors and contrast and stuff even though I don't really know what I'm doing.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

is it the cold or the darkness?

Here in Fairbanks, people will tell you that it isn't so much the cold that makes it miserable but the darkness.  I respectfully disagree.  It's both.  Now that January is in the past, and it has gotten a smidge warmer and as of today, we have 8+ hours of daylight, I'd like to take a moment to bash on January.  (Sorry January, you got a RAW deal but at least you're popular down under.)

January was plain awful (you can say that again*).  January was plain awful for 2 obvious reasons: 1) the days were miserably short, which means it was dark A LOT and 2) those fleeting moments of glorious sunlight were tainted by the bitter cold, making it impossible to enjoy the dazzling sunshine when it made a rare appearance.

Now that we are well into February, it has indeed gotten lighter AND warmer - such is my joy.  This is the 3rd day in a row that we have been in the positives and I can confirm that positive numbers are aptly named, as they are indeed positive.

To celebrate this recent improvement, I think I'll go for a walk at lunch and RELISH the return of positive numbers and sunshine.

* did you catch that Annie reference? - together at last, together forever, we're tying a knot, that no one can sever..... (now I'm just getting carried away)

Sunday, February 7, 2010

a memoir in 6 words

I was reading an article the other day on the npr website about a new book of 6 word memoirs.

 
6 words isn't much to work with but I started working on mine and this is what I came up with:

I underwhelm myself; wiser for it.  

What's yours?

Thursday, February 4, 2010

birthday season


I've always liked Groundhogs Day - it's so unabashedly pagan, what's not to love. But what I like best about Groundhogs Day is that it marks exactly 1 month from my birthday and because February is a freakish 28 days, that means it's 4 weeks to the day. I like to think that Groundhogs Day is to my birthday, what Thanksgiving is to Christmas - once it's over, it's time to start planning for the next holiday.  

Back when I was planning on moving to Fairbanks, I fretted about the idea of turning 30 alone in the frigid cold. In response to my fear, I planned on taking a trip to Hawaii for my birthday and spending it on the beach.  Unfortunately, I used up too much vacation time on my trip home for Christmas that I can't take the time off.  Also, my pesky student loans finally went into repayment and I am feeling the sting. So my grand birthday plans have been postponed until I can save up some more vacation days and I can get my loans consolidated.

I'm not so worried about spending my 30th here in Fairbanks anymore. It might even be fun, while it will most certainly be some degree of frigid outside, it won't be lonely.

Monday, February 1, 2010

my inner competitor

I went to a roller derby on Saturday night and I think I'm hooked. This may be the most exciting sport that I have ever watched. Sports just aren't my thing - I like baseball which some people say isn't even a sport. I'm okay with that, all I know is I love watching the Sox play at Fenway. I've been to quite a few hockey games since I moved up her to Fairbanks and they're pretty fun but so far I've been rather disappointed because I haven't seen a fight yet.

Roller Derby sorta blew my mind - it was so exciting. I pretty much cheered my guts out. The whole time I kept thinking, I wish I were that kind of girl. I wish I were hardcore, ruthless, tough.... Sadly I am not that kind of girl. I am uncoordinated, I don't like getting hurt and I don't know if I could ever knock anyone over. I had a pair of roller skates when I was probably about 10 - I loved them but even then I was no good at skating. I somehow doubt that I have improved much in the past 20 years. 

I was reminded of my competitive side earlier this week.  I was at a church activity at which there was a cake decorating contest. Our teams challenge was to make a "Daniel and the Lions Den" cake - I was ruthless. Out of nowhere I took charge and ordered my team around. I sort of realized how bossy I was being and tried really hard to tune back a bit so as to avoid being a total jerk. In the end it was a team effort and my team definitely made a lot of great contributions but I surprised myself with my own competitiveness.  Btw, we totally won! - who saw that coming? well I did of coarse. Don't mess with this cake decorator!

Last night I stayed up way too late watching "Whip it" with my roommate. It's a movie about roller derby (like I said, I'm kind of obsessed) and I can't stop wishing I was that kind of girl. For now I think maybe I'll focus my hardcore competitive nature on confections and maybe weaving.

(more about weaving later.)