Wednesday, December 30, 2009

Now, This is a First! . . . Birthday, That Is

Kimball, I know that this is after the fact, but the director (moi) and editor (Uncle Christian) of this video have been tweaking it to get it just right, hence the delay. We made it just for you with ginormous amounts of love thrown in :)

Happy, happy first birthday to
the doggone cutest, sweetest,
most precious grandson in the whole world!!!



Whispered in Kimball's ear nearly every time I'm with him:
"Grandmama loves baby Kimball"
I don't want him to ever wonder or forget. Ever. Ever.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

Y? Because I'm a Queen


If you leave these Cake Bites out for Santa, I'll almost GAR-OWN-TEEEEE that he will treat you like a queen . . . or a king, depending.

On a side note, I've identified a sure-fire way to figure out if you are a queen or a king. It all has to do with The Three Stooges. Seriously. Listen up. If you love, and I mean LUV The Three Stooges, you carry an X and a Y chromosome. If you are like me and have all of your wits about you, then you ABHOR The Three Stooges with a passion. You are a queen with two X chromosomes and possess extremely good taste in movies.

Meanwhile, back at the ranch . . .


Cake Bites

1 chocolate cake baked in 9 X 13 pan
(a box mix works great)
1 canister cream cheese frosting (not whipped style)
Dipping chocolate
Skewers or lollipop sticks

After baking the cake, allow to completely cool in pan. Break cake into small chunks and place in large mixing bowl. Add entire canister of frosting. Mix thoroughly with wooden spoon. Roll mixture into walnut-size balls and place on a baking sheet lined with waxed paper. Place baking sheet in freezer for at least an hour or until cake balls are frozen. (At this point the balls can be placed in a freezer bag and placed in the freezer for up to three weeks.) Melt dipping chocolate in a narrow and deep bowl or glass measuring cup. Dip the frozen cake balls into chocolate using two forks and place on waxed paper. Alternatively, skewer the cake balls with a skewer or lollipop stick and dip the cake balls in the chocolate. Allow chocolate to set up then drizzle with contrasting chocolate. If you wish to roll the cake balls in crushed candy canes, chopped nuts, toffee bits, coconut, nonpareils, etc., do so immediately after dipping the balls in the chocolate; place on waxed paper to set up. Makes approximately 6 dozen cake bites.

And now, a deep thought for the day: "Nyuck, nyuck, nyuck."--Curly Howard


Friday, December 18, 2009

Sweetened Condensed Milk Book Reviews


I've been doing a bit of reading these last few months, so gather 'round kids because it's time for another edition of "Reading is FUNdamental!" All strapped in? We're going to take this fast so pay attention. Here we go:

A-D-O-R-E-D it yet again!

I can't say enough about my Jane.






A thought provoker nudging me

toward some serious self-reflection.

Very much enjoyed it.







I've always been curious about the Mrs. Pollifax series. Fun, easy escapism.







The previous book was fun, easy escapism.

This one was easy, fun escapism.

But now I'm good.








Deceivingly simple but actually very, very deep.

I liked it very much.








Now you're talking my language!

The best of Jane Austen in my humble opinion.

Absolutely the best.






After three tries at this book over the last few years, I finally conquered it. Harder to read than Jane Austen, but almost as satisfying. Almost. Thackeray lacks the warmth of Jane Austen. Still great, though. Oh, that little Becky Sharp!







I know I'm Johnny-Come-Lately in getting around to this title. It was a little difficult for me to read through some of the more descriptive parts, and it could have/should have explored the life lessons a bit more thoroughly.

So, yeah. I liked it but didn't love it.




So there you have it, gang. A parting shot: "She is too fond of books, and it has turned her brain."

--Louisa May Alcott 1873

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Yes, Kimball, (and Dave), There is a Santa Claus

Since Kimball's curiosity regarding the actual validity of Mr. Santa Claus has reached a feverish pitch, I decided to give Kimball the gift of hope and optimism. I'll let you have a sneak peak by copying the address below and pasting it into your browser window. Go ahead. Don't be shy. Go on, now. You won't be sorry; this is so darling. C'mon and copy and paste. But remember to come back because I have more to tell you! (As if you ever doubted that I would run out of things to say. Right.) See you in a minute.

http://portablenorthpole.tv/watch/1d23d744d128875926c8a4bffd164400

Howdy. Sweet, no? So listen up. Dave's own belief in Santa has started waning of late. Dave has had to perform much of the work which would normally fall under Santa's official job description, thus questions have crept in and lingered. Apparently, Santa has become very addicted to Facebook and Twitter. Can't drag him away from them. Couple that with the lure of Mrs. C's holiday eggnog, with a big, and I mean BIG, emphasis on the nog part, and all this just screams INTERVENTION NEEDED AT THE NORTH POLE--STAT! Alas, Dave has had to pick up the slack for Santa aka Tipsy the Twitterer, and now Dave is coming perilously close to joining . . . gasp . . . THE UNBELIEVERS. I know! I decided he needed a bit of hope and optimism himself. So here is a gift to Dave to drag him back from the very brink of the "Abyss-of-Zero-Toys" where all doubters go. Santa does not reward doubters. And, I am happy to report, Santa does seem to be back in top form thanks to a nasty virus which infected his FB and Twitter accounts rendering them basically useless freeing up much of Santa's time. In a cruel twist of irony, Santa now has more doubters than ever thanks to the hackers who continue posting pictures of Osama Bin Laden claiming he is the real Santa all dressed up in his desert-wear collection. So here you go. Whew! My work here is done.

You know the drill: copy and paste. http://portablenorthpole.tv/watch/ed2dc6b5f15e5a195b806696f27ff6de

Saturday, December 12, 2009

Seventeen!


HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO THE MOST
DARLING, FABULOUS, AND UNBELIEVABLY
TALENTED 17-YEAR-OLD IN THE WORLD!
NAY, IN THE SOLAR SYSTEM!
NAY, IN THE UNIVERSE!
NAY, IN THE ENTIRE REALM OF INFINITY!!!
Uh, in case you didn't notice, I adore my boy! I'm the luckiest mom ever!



I need someone
Older and wiser
Telling me what to do
You are 17 going on 18
I'll depend on you

Bonus points awarded if you can identify
the classic movie musical for which these song lyrics
were written.
Wrong. The movie is not Transformers 2, Revenge of the Fallen. Sheesh.

Wednesday, December 09, 2009

Jack Be Limbo

Another gift from heaven for me to study, scrutinize, and savor!

Hey! I think somebody's been pulling my leg about Seanie being in Honduras. Looks to me like he is livin' life large down in the red rock country of St. George right along with all of those other uber-tan retirees. My proof? Besides that tell-tale red dirt? See that twig structure in the background? (Click on pic to get a really good look.) I bet you think that it is a homemade soccer goal. Me too. At first. But then I began having my doubts as I was looking at it with the handy-dandy magnifying glass taken from my Hasbro Sherlock Holmes Super-Sneaky Sleuthing Kit for Boys and Girls, ages 12+. So now, I've totally done a 160. Or a 170. Whatever. So, no, that isn't a rickety soccer goal sticking up in the middle of some odd field. Nuh-uh. It's a LIMBO STICK! A limbo stick toward which those wild and crazy retired geezers of St. George flock after their big Saturday morning Bingo Blast. No wonder Sean has such a whittled-down waist.

Every limbo boy and girl
All around the limbo world
Gonna do the limbo rock
All around the limbo clock
Jack be limbo, Jack be quick
Jack go unda limbo stick
All around the limbo clock
Hey, let's do the limbo rock

Limbo lower now
Limbo lower now
How low can you go

GO, ELDER, GO!


Tuesday, December 01, 2009

Tryptophan-dango





By my reckoning, we should all be about half way through our stash of left-over-and-gradually-drying-out-to-Sahara-like-aridness Thanksgiving turkey meat (white and dark) lurking in the recesses of the old Frigidaire. And, just for curiosity sake, who likes that dark meat anyway? With its muscle-y stringyness and myoglobin protiens floating around? Ew. Say! I have an absolutely brilliant idea! Why don't they sell only the white meat part of a turkey? Seriously! Yeehaw! I think I smell a very lucrative marketing idea bringing me fame and fortune . . . . What? When? Oh. Geez. Why am I always the last one to know? Darn that Jennie-O, anyway.

But wait. If there is no dark meat . . . how does a turkey strut around without any drumsticks . . . I'm confused.

Click on images to better read a couple of my
Thanksgiving vocabulary words and definitions
(I have more, but I don't want to outstay my welcome)


Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Calling All Cars, Calling All Cars . . .



Smnffghchghfff, uh, niner-niner, we have a code five on the run. Suspect is a white male wearing (do I see what you see, Ralph? affirmative? well . . . alrighty then . . . ) uh, wearing only a diaper and socks. We recommend the K-9 unit be called in on this one--suspect is leaving a distinct odor in his wake.

Ten-four. Standby.

Niner-niner. Forget K-9 unit. We've located suspect's discarded apparel. I need a code one. Please dispatch the HAZMAT Unit immediately. I repeat, please dispatch the HAZMAT Unit immediately. And I mean, NOW!

Ten-four on that . . . I repeat, ten-four on that. Ralph? Archie? Hey guys! Guys?

Monday, November 23, 2009

Free Admission

Following the birthday chow-down (see previous post), some of us (minus Christian's entourage who got detained by the ol' "stuck in freeway traffic" misfortune) mosied over to BYU to watch this month's feature movie from BYU's Special Film Series Collection entitled, "The Flame and the Arrow." Well. Hmm. I don't quite know what to say except that the old adage, "you get what you pay for" certainly lived up to its hype this go round.

I must say, however, that watching Burt Lancaster joust and parry in his medieval outfit, complete with tighty tights, was a highlight for a certain demographic in the audience. By the by, did you know that they had spandex in 1950? I didn't know that. Did you know that? I didn't know that. But I do now. Whooo-eee.

There is another old saying that goes, "we're not laughing at you, we're laughing with you." Okaaaaay. Yeah. Let's run with that. But honestly, we had a hilarious time thanks to you, Mr. Lancaster (no offense). No, really. We loved it. Especially when half of the characters spoke with British accents and the other half did not. And even more especially when those who did speak with British accents were supposedly playing German characters. Pure gold.

We'll be back.

Friday, November 20, 2009

Double Dip

HAPPY BIRTHDAY,
ASHLEY AND JORDAN!!!
TO TWO (dos, deux, zwei, tva, got that?)
OF THE MOST AWESOME, EXTRAORDINARY,
AND WONDERFUL PEOPLE:
MAY YOUR VERY DEAREST WISHES COME TRUE!!!

And, Kimball wishes you all of the happiness in the world, too!


Please view the video below then pause a moment to take a quick poll.

POLL: Judging by the look on Kimball's face, does he think this waiter is:
a) Fresh from his latest concert at the Met where the pay scale must be pretty lame because, ahem, here he is moonlighting at Gloria's Little Italy;

b) Heck-bent on scaring babies and small children into silent and stunned submission in an effort to ingratiate himself with nearby patrons as he guns for bigger tips

c) Pretty hot stuff


Polls will remain open for the next 48 hours. Thank you, and come again.

Thursday, November 19, 2009

That's My Girl! (As In, MINE!)

I happen to be closely related to one of the most amazing people I know. How she came to be so fabulously accomplished while being raised by a quasi-dippy mother is something for the heavens to explain but for which I shall ever be grateful.

ASHLEY,
CONGRATULATIONS ON
DEFENDING YOUR THESIS!!!
You were simply maaaaaaaarvelous!

To read more about my incredible off-spring (just how did that happen anyway?) and her fantastic milestone, go here.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009

Who Needs Chocolate When These Are Delivered?

There really is something better than chocolate? My! The very idea! Yeah, I know that even the merest hint that there could actually be something more sought after than a box of Debauve & Gallais bonbons comes within a breath of being sacrilegious in certain social circles, but honestly, these pictures are the sweetest treat I could ever wish to receive. Delish!


Saturday, November 14, 2009

AF Marching Band Rocks!



The friends and family members of the band anxiously awaiting the announcement of the top 12 bands qualifying for finals--a more supportive group I have never seen


Sadly, the American Fork Marching Band didn't make the finals at the Grand National Competition. Shucks. But they gave it everything they had, and that is enough. The band wanted to do this for themselves, of course, but also for the memory of Heather Christensen, one of their band staff who was killed in the bus accident last month. After having dedicated this show to her, I think the band will now have closure and can move on. Even though the band won't be playing tonight, their incredible story will be featured during the finals at the Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis. Very cool.

Now, I just want Christian home.

I AM SO PROUD OF CHRISTIAN!!!
HE IS MY HERO!



Sentiments of sympathy for the loss of Heather from other bands



More outpouring of kindness and support


Letters and emails streamed in with messages of love



And more



From bands all across the state


Even fierce rivals




Hundreds of trophies earned by the band



Hundreds more


Now, do you have a sec? Don't hang up! I have to share a merry little story with you before you and I say goodnight:

So, Christian has always felt a bit deprived because he never got to eat at . . . ga . . . ga . . . gagWhite Castle . . . gag . . . (ooh, hairball) . . . while we lived in Illinois. Actually, he did have that, aaah, shall we say, opportunity, but I suppose he was simply too young to remember it. Either that, or his brain did that nifty thing it can do, and it wiped that truly gruesome experience out of his conscious mind. I, on the other hand, was old enough to remember it, and my brain did not do any wiping. So, since Christian was in Indianapolis for the band competition, and since he was only down the road a smidge from a gagWhite Castle, and since he prides himself on being something of a gourmand, he jumped at the chance to partake. The official pronouncement? And I quote, "White Castle has GOT to be the very bottom of the fast food chain," unquote.

My sincerest apologies to Messrs. White and Castle, but sometimes mom really does know best.


Friday, November 13, 2009

AF Marching Band Update

Out of 130 bands, American Fork is
one of 34 bands in the SEMI-FINALS!!!!
The band will perform tomorrow
at 9:45 a.m., M.S.T.
Pray.

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

They Are Going to Grand Nationals!

(Christian is second quad from the right)

Holy cats! The American Fork Marching Band has decided on a moment's notice to attend the BIG KAHUNA of marching band competitions at the Bands of America Grand National Competition in Indianapolis this Friday! Wha . . . ? How? . . . When did they . . . ?

This will be very, very hard, but I will try to make a long story short: The band previously decided to go to the national competition next year (as in, NOT this year) as it is extremely expensive for the families to fund their child in the band in the first place, not to mention adding an additional $900+ to pay to go to the national competition. The band director is very sensitive to the outlay that each family must bear, so he only takes the band to the national competition every few years. This year was not to be one of those years. However, (cue dramatic music here) after the band's final performance at the Bands of America Regional Competition last weekend, (AF totally swept the competition and took every single shiny prize the BOA dangled in front of them, hooha!), the BOA judges were so blown away by AF's show that they approached our band director and told him that he must take his band to the national competition. This. Coming. Week. I think our band director's mind must have blasted out of his head at that point with even the suggestion. I mean, really. These national competitions are such a big deal that years, years!!! of preparation are made before taking the band to such an event.

Imagine trying to get the parents onboard with the idea, the school district's approval, hotels, flights, semi trucks driving the equipment half way across the country . . . seriously an unbelievable undertaking. Probably harder than trying to squeeze into a pair of Spanx. The logistics alone are staggering: 221 band students and about 30 staff members and chaperones to put up in hotels, feed, transport by air and then bus . . . cuurraaazzzzzzyyyyyy. Those BOA judges are just plain daffy. Insane. No way. Nuh, uh. Oh. By the way, the band is going. SHRIEK!!! Can you believe it? They are going!!! In the space of about 36 hours, a parents meeting was held, votes were cast, money was collected from each family, donations were made for those financially limited, and the BAND IS GOING.

One moment Christian is picking out his tux for this weekend's formal preference dance (one of the casualties of all of this), the next moment he is packing up his jammies and his drumsticks racing to catch his plane. As an aside, that boy is one tall drink of water in his Agent 007 tux. Just sayin'.

There wasn't even a time slot available for the band in the competition. Like I said (humphf! were you even listening?), this competition is huge, and bands spend years anticipating it. The BOA judge said he would squeeze AF's band into the lineup on the very first day of competition before the very first slot, which isn't even officially a slot. Then a miracle happened (harp music here). Another band dropped out. Just like that. So now AF has an official time slot.

Friday. 11:00 a.m. MST. Pray.

Now you have my permission to say, "liar, liar, pants on fire." Apparently, making a long story short is way beyond my ability.

Monday, November 09, 2009

No Way Was That Marshall Matt Dillon


We loaded up the ol' family truckster with an assortment of folks and ventured down to see the latest in BYU's Harold B. Lee Library Special Collections Film Series. The movie, "The Thing From Another World," is a great black and white 1951 sci-fi flick with James Arness aka Matt Dillon of tv's "Gunsmoke" starring as The Thing. Frankly, if that really was James Arness grunting and clomping around in those size 15 boots in the movie, for all I know, that could have been my mom starring as Miss Kitty in Gunsmoke, cuz The Thing was on the screen for all of about 20 seconds and always at a blurry distance. There's no way you could know that James Arness was anywhere near that movie set. Your Uncle LaVere could have played the part of The Thing and your Aunt Gladys would never have been the wiser. I hope James Arness' relatives weren't counting on him having some terrific face-time in this particular role. In the film's defense, however, the movie was actually quite good for its day. Great acting, snappy dialogue, clever story line--well worth the admission price (uh, free). We shall return.

Hmm. Gosh. For all I know, it WAS my Uncle LaVere in those size 15s. He always was a rather stiff clomper . . . .

Saturday, November 07, 2009

Thursday, November 05, 2009

I'm the Luckiest Girl!

Um, St. Peter? Hello? Hello? Have I died and gone to Heaven? I can hardly believe that I have been blessed with yet more pictures of Seanie. After all of those months without one single picture. Months and months. Hoping, praying, finger crossing. Months! So I must share:


Sean's shoes have obviously lived the hard life. Lots of walking. Not very many chances for resting atop of an ornately carved mahogany desk. Rarely a day off for good behavior.



Here is Sean preaching to the stubborn but doing so with a lot of enthusiasm and sincerity. Alas, Mr. Bernard Bull has a hardened heart and has closed his ears to the truth. He may also be color blind.


A peculiar pecking order manifested itself when six elders shared a single mirror. I guess it helps to be 6'2". (The last the best of all the game, and all that jazz . . . or is it the tallest?)
Believe you me, more photos will follow. So gear up, boys and girls. I'm wearing my Mother-of-a-Missionary badge with honor!!!