Thursday, July 30, 2009

A Small Break

Let me take a small break to introduce you to another amazing piece of music. Growing up, my dad had several pieces of music that he thought were amazing. One of them was a recording of the men from the Mormon Tabernacle Choir singing "Pilgrim's Chorus" from Wagner's (Vahg-nur) Tannhauser. (Imagine an umlaut over the second a, making that into an 'oy' sound.) It's a gorgeous piece of music and my only bone to pick with the recording was that after the acapella part, an organ joined them instead of an orchestra. Morgan and I really wanted to hear an updated version of the Mormon Tabernacle Choir singing it backed up by the Orchestra on Temple Square. (Or whatever the orchestra they often sing with is called.) Last night, my brother and I found a recording that fulfilled my dream! It's from last year. It's another one that I can't embed, but you simply MUST go listen to it RIGHT NOW. Here it is.

Now, if the speakers you're around aren't that great, you'll have to listen to it a second time on the best you can find. It's even better! (And you'll find it won't be a hardship to listen to it more than once. I hope you enjoy!

Monday, July 27, 2009


Boring title, but this is not a boring girl. (I'm not picking on your name, Alecia. I'm having a profound lack of creativity these past couple of weeks.) Alecia moved into our ward just before we did. At the time, there were relatively few young couples in the ward, so we got to be friends. Lucky for us, Alecia is great at reaching out to friends. (Something I'm not great at.) Our friendship started innocently. Dinner and games. But then one day, we got to really talk.

I love talking to Alecia. She is interesting, funny, and smart. She's also a great listener. In our conversation, we talked about things that move people from acquaintances to good friends. I appreciate her trust in me and also appreciate that I can trust her.

Alecia is very creative. She can do really cool things like reupholster chairs. Wow! She's really good at putting pictures together. And she cooks like nobody's business. You haven't lived until you've tasted her BBQ chicken pizza. She told me it was easy. Can something that good be easy? I don't know. And she does lots of other really amazing things like put people at ease, play with children, love her dog...

I don't know if I've given you a good sense of Alecia, but you would all adore this wonderful girl!

Friday, July 17, 2009

No goats in this post

This post is about my friend Heidi. The title of this post is just to tease her based on a comment recently. :) The funny thing about Heidi is I lived near her two different times before I really got to know her. I lived in the same apartment complex forever and ever and she kept moving in and out. I think it was the second time that she was actually roommates with my cousin, but even then, we didn't see each other much. I knew she was nice and had good taste. After all, we agreed on Jane Austen and L.M. Montgomery. What more do you need to base a friendship on? But it wasn't until the third time we lived near each other that we got to be good friends.

She worked at the library. As a frequent patron of the library, I would see her and say hi and we'd talk books and life. But the clincher was when I had to leave my new husband for two weeks on a trip. He was really busy with school, so while we talked a lot on the phone, he couldn't devote as much time as I wanted. (It wouldn't have been possible.) Heidi kept me up to date and smiling with goings-on at the library and happy thoughts and listened to me whine about being away from home. (Even though I was actually happy to be where I was.) She wrote me every day, long emails just like I love to receive, though I'm bad at writing them generally. :)

Heidi is yet another wonderfully talented friend. She sings and writes and boy, her grammar in impeccable when she wants it to be! She has another talent that I envy. She's really great at giving gifts. She got me and Morgan tickets to see "Wicked" here, four months after we moved. It was fantastic! We were so grateful to her!

I think the thing I like most about Heidi is we can talk about anything. I always learn from her and we keep each other from getting too depressed. :) At least, she keeps me from being too depressed. I'm not as great a friend. But I really appreciate Heidi and everything about her. What a GREAT girl!!

Wednesday, July 15, 2009

Well... She's not my biological aunt.

I've already written this post and trashed it. It's very difficult to write about Aunt Mona and give a good picture. Let's just put it this way. I introduce her as my aunt, although to anyone who knows my family well, they might get a short explanation of not being biologically related to her.

I started getting to know Aunt Mona when I was a pre-teen and she taught sign language classes. She was Sister Z. then. A couple years later, our families started to hang out. Before long, we (our families) were inseparable. We spent Family Home Evenings together (Monday nights), went on trips together during school vacations, did lots and lots of talent shows, played games, all sorts.... ;)

Aunt Mona always treated me with the respect I didn't deserve. And I loved her for it. I knew I could express my opinions and thoughts to her because they mattered to her. (Even if she did get a good laugh out of them later, I would never know.) She gave me responsibilities that encouraged me to act more responsible for her trust. Other than my parents, she was one of the most formative adults in my youth.

Aunt Mona has all sorts of talents and attributes and skills... It would take hours to draw a portrait of her. She has a blog where you might start to get to know her, although she's on hiatus for the summer. Here it is.

I sure am lucky to call her friend.

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Little Bro

Okay, for those of you who don't obsessively check my blog every day (I know there's probably one or two of you), sorry about all the reading. But I'm just so excited to introduce everyone. I know some of the finest people on this earth and you would all love each other. But I guess if you don't want to read every post, you really don't have to. (But you should.) :)

Okay, so now to my little brother David. [That's right punctuation, right? Because I have more than one little brother, there should be no comma? I hate commas.] One of my less sketchy memories as a child is of the day my little brother was born. Part of it was traumatic. (For a five year old. Give me a break.) The other part was really sweet. David was born on a Sunday. As we children lined up for Primary, Dad came to tell us he was taking Mom to the hospital to have the baby, so we were to go home with the Petersons. So we went home with the Petersons. Then the phone rang. I actually remember exactly what their house looked like when it came to where the phone was. Funny memory, huh? Mom specifically wanted to talk to me, which made me feel special. The reason was, though, that she had thought David would be a girl. (Only baby she was wrong on.) That was the traumatic part. I was so excited for my first sister! So Mom wanted to tell me that he was boy, but that he was very sweet, and I would absoluuutely adore him. (Can anyone name that movie?) I got to meet him I believe the next day. Grandma took us to the hospital. Mom was right. He was the sweetest baby. I got to hold him and fell in love right there.

Other memories of David... (Sorry, David. Hope this isn't too embarrassing.) He really loved his pacifier. His favorite way to suck on it was upside down. I remember many fun times twisting it in his mouth so it would be right side up. He would use his tongue to turn it back over the way he liked it.

Another strong memory of David is driving him places in the car. David had started to play on the drums and wanted to work on his beat. So in the car, we would turn on the radio and I would drill him. Find the beat. Where's the first beat of the measure? What time signature are we in? Where are the other strong beats? I also loved singing with him in the car. He had a knack for hearing harmonies I couldn't. I was impressed by that.

I could go on and on. About when he visited right before he went into the MTC. About the day he came home from his mission. Hanging out with him at college. David is now getting married. Is that possible? I can't wait to meet his fiance! But it will be slightly surreal that my baby brother is old enough for that.

Friday, July 10, 2009

Sister Kaylynn

I met Kaylynn when I was in Young Women. I was a Laurel. She was a Leader. The bishop mandated that though we weren't terribly far apart in age, I had to call her Sister instead of by her name. She told me the day I graduated, I could call her Kaylynn. And I did. :)

I always enjoyed Kaylynn. She was a fun leader who always had nice things to say. My teenage memory being as sketchy as it is, I don't have many stories to tell about her specifically. But she got back in touch with me recently thanks to Facebook, I think. (Right?) Or my blog. Ooo. Now I'm thinking it was through blogs somehow. I've been having a blast getting to know her again through her blog. She has three darling kids and is getting her master's in teaching! Wow! Obviously a very smart woman.

Not only is she smart, but she has good taste in movies and books. She recently posted about one of my favorite movies, "Walk, Don't Run." She came up with a dream cast for a remake of it. I won't taint you with her choices--not because I don't like them, but I want to see what you'll come up with. Any ideas?

Anyway, meet Kaylynn. A power woman of talent, taste, education and breeding. (Do I sound like a Jane Austen novel or what?)

Tuesday, July 7, 2009

A Nod to Greatness

Okay, I'm taking a little break from introducing you to each other just for this post. Don't worry. I haven't given up. (And have you seen our two new friends?) Last night, I discovered something and just had to post about it.

Last night, I was playing the piano and feeling my inadequacies. For someone so "talented," I sure do stink. :) (Not fishing for compliments here.) I was asking Morgan how in the world people play so lightly. Instead of saying, "But honey, you play lighter than a mosquito lands," he showed me this.

Did you see how lightly he played?! Wow! He is so incredible to watch. What a talented man. He collected folk music, wrote music, was a conductor and an obviously accomplished pianist.

So last night, after Morgan showed me that, I showed him one of my favorite clips of a pianist. Now, this one's a little bit longer, but in appreciation of greatness, take five minutes to watch this man play. (And yes, Morgan says he's probably really playing most of the other instruments you see him playing.)

I think my very favorite part is 2:15 into it. Just gorgeous playing. He has so much control! Doesn't he make that look so easy? I could watch him for hours.

Glad to have shared this amazingness with you.

Monday, July 6, 2009


Today, I'm introducing Bri. She's a Z, so once in a message, identified herself as Bri Z, which I especially loved because I call one of my sisters Beezy. Okay. Now you know her name.

I'm not quite sure about this (maybe you remember, Bri) but I think I first met Bri when I was house-sitting for her future in-laws as they were out of the country. Her sister-in-law, Hannah (a different one), wanted to introduce me to some of her friends and I'm pretty sure Bri was in the mix. The next time I met Bri was when she was affianced to my little brother's best friend. They were getting married in less than a week, so we didn't spend too much time together, but I did spend enough time with her to know that she was one heck of a gal. She's fun, but also practical. Headstrong (which, in my book, is a positive word, so don't take that the wrong way). I really enjoy reading her blog when she updates. She and her new husband (not quite SO new anymore) are darling and I really admire her ability to show her love, commitment and admiration for her husband. Not only that, but I admire how she loves the gospel and isn't afraid to show it. Oh, and she has a very nice voice. :)

Thanks, BriZ, for your example. And pardon the incoherency of this particular entry. My brain seems to have left me for the day.

Friday, July 3, 2009


Hannah R. As a teenager, Hannah was just the little sister of a best friend. But as her two older sisters left for college and I was lonely when I came home for the summer, I started to be friends with Hannah. Then she came out to college and we developed a good relationship. And she was vitally important to the budding relationship between me and Morgan. Morgan and I had been "hanging out" (gasp) for several weeks. About the time that Morgan was getting over Jannie's friend, Hannah met him for the first time. She asked candidly, "What are you intentions towards my cousin." I think Hannah is the reason he noticed I was a girl instead of just a friend. Thanks, Hannah!

One thing I really appreciate about Hannah is her inquisitiveness. She loves to know about not only people, but everything. I love her questions about the gospel. They're often very insightful. And she's delightful to be around because I sure know she cares. Hannah is one talented, beautiful, bright girl. I sure miss living near her.

Thursday, July 2, 2009

On a Happier Note...

(By the way, the way blogs are set up to show the newest post first always blows my novel-reading mind. Shouldn't this come after my previous post you you understand why we need a happier note? Anyway...)

Let me introduce you to my first follower. Her name is Jannie. If I had a picture of Jannie, I would post it, but I don't so you'll just have to deal with it. Jannie was my sanity one year at college. Well, really post college. She was my escape when I needed to get away from my apartment. She made me laugh when I was depressed. It is because of Jannie I wore a wedding dress. Not only did she talk me into the idea. (I thought it was a little crazy to spend $500 on a wedding dress when I would wear it for all of 4 hours in my life.) She also made my wedding dress. I would post a picture of said beautiful dress, but unfortunately those pictures are on my other computer and the track pad on that computer doesn't work. Sorry, y'all.

One other thing about Jannie and me (since, of course, this is my thoughts on Jannie and not a complete character sketch) that tickles me is she was really good friends with the girl my husband was interested in before he liked me. So when I would bemoan how he wasn't interested in me, she would tell me how nice the other girl was. Big fat lot of help. :) Actually, she was right. That girl really was nice. But somehow she missed his perfection and sent him my way.

Oh, did this post turn from Jannie to me? Well, it is my blog. (I hope you can hear humor in the voice here.) Back to Jannie. Jannie is one of those wonderful friends that you can not talk to for two years (yes, there really should be a space between can and not) and call her and talk as if it had been two weeks. She is the kind of person who would make a wedding dress is the week and a half she has between her huge trip and a friend's wedding. (While she's working a real job.) She is charitable, kind, thoughtful, true...

I really could go on, but what am I setting myself up for? :) Let me sum Jannie up. Jannie makes people happy.

Jannie, don't you want to move where it's green and beautiful? I miss you!

A Thought

I woke up this morning, feeling sick. This time not because of my crazy body but because thoughts kept running through my mind. You've probably had similar thoughts. "What if the cap and trade bill passes the Senate?" I couldn't go back to sleep, so I got up. All morning I keep thinking, "What if the cap and trade bill passes the Senate?" PLEASE call your senators and tell them to vote no.

Don't know what the cap and trade bill is? There's lots of places to read about it on the internet. Here's the simple version. Government increases taxes majorly on energy companies. Energy companies have to raise prices ridiculously. People in the House defeated any ability to stop the cap and trade bill if gas reaches $5 a gallon, unemployment goes up past 15% or any other such inconvenience. Right now, a ridiculous amount of our money goes to taxes. With this bill, much more will now disappear from our hands. People will start hoarding money and stop buying. Yes, good job. Way to stimulate the economy.

I realize that the bill is more complicated than that. But really, don't leave a comment trying to tell me it's a good thing. It really is not a good thing. It really is scary. It really is going to hurt our economy even more. So really. Don't bother.

PLEASE go to a TEA Party this Saturday and protest the outrageous spending of our government which cannot ultimately help our economy. It's insane.

Oh, for more fun reading, look up REEP cap and trade on Google. Read how in the bill it specifically says that any building with air conditioning (meaning your house) has to have a roof that reflects solar energy before it can be sold. So you want to sell your house? Better start saving for a new roof. If 300,000 houses get retrofitted every year for ten years, it will save us a whole ten days worth of oil in that decade. Wow. What help.

And before you tell me how important the environment is, let me say that I believe conservation is important. I don't think we should mindlessly use our resources until they're gone and just leave garbage behind. But crippling the economy is NOT the way to do it.

Okay, stepping off my soapbox.