Today I Am Sad

Despite a surety of its ultimate powerlessness, when death comes and steals away with one of the best of us I can't help but feel a little helpless and very sad. Last night was one of those times.

 Jim Reams

City Manager
and Champion of storytelling in my fine city.


I discovered this soundtrack on my iPod today:

Admit it, I'm the coolest person you know!


I Am One Who Sews

I do not look on "Reality" TV with much fondness. That said, I somehow got sucked in by two (yes, two!) "Reality" shows this summer. The first, Food Network's Great Food Truck Race (or something like that), ended in such a dumb manner as to cure me from ever watching that series again! The second, Lifetime's Project Runway, has taught me that I know absolutely nothing about fashion (and really that is okay judging by what they are calling fashion)--I am now watching the show mostly to see when they finally kick Gretchen off! However, watching Project Runway has sort of brought out a secret inner desire to be able to sew. It is a secret desire that most likely would have gone unrevealed (despite a New Year's resolution to sew a skirt this year--and a pillow) if not for my lovely cousin Jen who after throwing a fantastic baby shower (the homemade soup was amazing) invited me to stay and learn how to sew a skirt. Amazingly, I was actually able to follow her very good instructions and left with this fabulous little number:

Probably should have snapped a picture of just the skirt, but you get the idea. 

Thanks Jen! You are the best!



Dear Readers,

So, I was teaching my Young Women in church on Sunday when I used the phrase "a bucket of fish" (or possibly "a kettle of fish") and was immediately stopped by the Young Women and asked for the definition for this archaic phrase. One of the other women sitting in on my class stepped in to help me by offering up another similar phrase: "a can of worms," but the Young Women still expressed disbelief at the use of such phrases and demanded further explanation. I promised I would do some research and bring them a translation of the phrase in their language on Sunday--only I kind of haven't done the research and really don't know how to go about doing that. So that is were you come in. Help me. Does anyone have any idea how to translate "a kettle of fish" or "a can of worms" into teenagese? Or possibly into text--cause they would think that was so cool--and what is the translation of "so cool" these days?

Hopelessly uncool and out of date,

Yankee Girl


Autumn To-Do List

It is finally my favoritest time of the year! And so it is time to get serious about what I want to accomplish over the next couple of months:

1. Drink apple cider (hot and cold).

2. Eat apple cider donuts (preferably hot).

3. Go on a hay ride.

4. Visit a pumpkin patch.

5. Bake a pie.

6. Breath in some of that gorgeous Fall air.

7. Head up into the mountains for the viewing of the Fall leaves.

8. Knit/crochet some new scarves--cause you can never have enough scarves.

9. Teach my nieces and nephews the joy of the leaf pile.

10. Wear lots and lots of sweaters (starting today even if it is 80 degrees outside because it is Fall!!!)

What is on your Fall to-do list?


These are my People

So I've failed to give a promised recap of the Timpanogos Storytelling Festival--cause I'm lame--so in brief:

It was wonderful. Antonio Sacre was brilliant, Bil (yes that is with one l) Lepp was very good, and Kim Weitcamp is a new favorite.

On the last day of the Festival I was looking around at the crowd and noticed that I recognized a few of the people in the audience. I tend to follow around 2 or 3 storytellers at our Festival and so it was kind of a given that the people I recognized were fellow fans of my favorites. At this thought I smiled and said, to myself, "these are my people." Then I got to looking around at my people:

There was the guy in a tank top, shorts, tennis shoes, and athletic socks pulled up nearly to his knees.

There was the girl whose shirt was so low cut in the back that it exposed the entirety of her rather dingy looking white bra.

And there was the guy in shorts taking a nap in the grass with his knees up in the air showing off all kinds of stuff that I am diligently trying to forget.

Yep, these are my people.

I had a similar experience last night as I attended Brandon Sanderson's book talk at my library. I arrived early and so had prime seating for the show that was about to begin--and by show I'm not referring to Sanderson. I don't think I need to go in to any details about exactly what I saw. In fact, I believe I can just remind you that Sanderson writes fantasy and let your imaginations do my work for me (actually I will say just one thing: mothers please, please, please teach your sons to shower and wear deodorant on a daily basis).

As I sat there I once again couldn't help but think, yep, these are my people.

p.s. Please don't let this scare you off from attending a storytelling event as the vast majority of people don't fit into any of the above categorizations. The Goddess Divine mentioned in a story the other day that she believes that the IQ of those who shop at Wal-Mart is significantly lower than the average IQ and then quite nicely categorized her readers as being the outliers who bring said IQ up. You, my lovely readers, I am convinced could be the storytelling outliers who bring up the dressing standards of a few underachievers.

Don't worry too much about the fantasy community as I am pretty sure that is a lost cause.


On the Docket

1. Finish Tales of a Wayside Inn (and pretend that reading 200 pages of poetry in the past 2 days counts toward my goal of reading a piece of poetry every day this year--even if I haven't read any (or much) poetry in the last, oh, 5 months.

2. Continue to send evil vibes toward the 3 people holding on to their copies of Brandon Sanderson's new book even while all 3 are now overdue at the library and I am left sitting in the no. 1 position on the request list).

3. Consider buying candy corn, reject the idea on the premise that I have been doing an excellent job at not eating junk, stay strong for hours and hours, give in.

4. Do laundry.

5. Do something permanent and productive--any ideas?


The Big Read

So every year, about this time, my city takes part in what is called the Big Read. This year, due to lack of funding, we are being encouraged to read or re-read a classic fantasy book (in years previous to the lack of funding we had been given a single book such as To Kill a Mockingbird). Each year, to go along with the reading, my fab library puts on programs galore! This year many of the programs are centered, naturally, around authors of fantasy novels. Here is the list--try not to get too jealous--of authors I get to see (maybe even meet) over the next month:

Brandon Sanderson (Alcatraz and Mistborn series)

James Dashner (The Maze Runner and The Scorch Trials)

Brandon Mull (Fablehaven)

Berin Stephens (The Dragon War Relic)

Stephen Gashler (The Bent Sword)

Greg Park (The Earthsoul Prophecies)

Dave Wolverton (Runeland series written under the pseudonym David Farland)

Scott Westerfeld (The Uglies)

Okay, so maybe it is your teens who will be jealous. But I am awfully excited--not only for these authors but for all the other experts on C.S. Lewis, Tolkien, le Guin, etc. that are being brought in to enlighten us (I'm such a nerd). I know I've said this before (just a few times), but I love my library.

p.s. give me a call if you are local and want to attend.


Happy Birthday to my Sis

Hope you liked the cupcakes

I'm thinking they were definitely a step up from my
Dora the Explorer Birthday Cake
(picked out especially for me by the 4-year-old niece)


The Mid-September's Eve Miracle

Drugs are a wonderful thing, aren’t they? They took a really horrible night that began with me sitting opened mouth in front of the TV (opened mouth sitting was a further attempt at continued breathing) that had nothing, I repeat nothing, new or interesting on for the entire night and finished it up with me blissfully falling asleep in my very own bed. That most wonderful sleep that ensued was then followed up by me rising from my bed, this morning around 9:30, completely healed. It was the Mid-September's Eve Miracle! Seriously, I've never recovered from anything this fast before. Sadly, as I came out of my drug and cold induced fog I came to the startling realisation that today is, in fact, Friday and not Saturday as I had previously assumed. Oh well, too late to do anything productive now, right? I'm thinking me, my bed, and a book--shhh, don't tell anyone that I'm better.

p.s. on the off chance that any of my Young Women have or ever do stumble across this post, I'm talking about the legal, over-the-counter drugs used only according to the directions on the label for the purposes specified on that same label--I'm watching you (my foolish little friends who friended me on Facebook)!



(I interrupt my reasonably excellent streak of blogging to give you an purely informational post that I can throw together very quickly and then retire to nurse my rather unfortunately timed head cold.)

Have you heard about Ted? I absolutely love Ted. It is my new way of wasting spending time on the Internet. What (yes, what not who 'cause, as we found out in my last post, I am now engaged to Peter Pan) it is is a collection of short (usually around 18 minutes) lectures given by a huge variety of experts. For example there is this rather funny (and yet really rather thought provoking) bit on "creating an education system that nurtures":

Or this fabulous one that comes with this description: Jill Bolte Taylor got a research opportunity few brain scientists would wish for: She had a massive stroke, and watched as her brain functions -- motion, speech, self-awareness -- shut down one by one. An astonishing story.

If none of these thrill you, you can also watch Malcolm Gladwell wax eloquent on Spaghetti Sauce or the many, many more options that are both informative and entertaining. Visit Ted here.

Now if you will please excuse me, I am going to go lay down whilst attempting to continue breathing.


A Conversation

4 Year Old Niece: Who are you going to marry?

Me: I don't know. Who do you think I should marry?

(Much Thought)

4 Year Old Niece: You can marry Peter Pan.

I was feeling really rather good at the end of this conversation. You see, my 4 year old niece has been in love with Peter Pan for sometime now. In fact, she had staked him out for her own future husband. In that light, her magnanimous offer of him to me was just about the sweetest thing I could imagine. Then (yes, there is a then) I found out yesterday that she was willing to give him up to me only because she has a new boyfriend at preschool who she smiles at when he helps her put away her toys.

So not only am I getting my 4 year old nieces cast offs, but she also has a better love life than me!


Enough Already!

I know that is what you are saying about my recent blog design changes, right? I mean how many blog design changes can one person go through in a year? Apparently, if that person is me, many.

Well, let me explain/defend myself. Yesterday my 4 year old niece gave me a tutorial on how to use my Dad's iPad (she knows it all from the password to how to find her favorite videos on YouTube) and as part of the demonstration we got on the Internet and hit my blog. That is when I noticed that the green on my blog appeared to be a color very similar to a shade I recently wiped off the bottom of one of my nephews. I just couldn't stand the idea of what I had thought of as a very pretty color showing up as something that just doesn't smell right. Something had to be done! Hence the blog design changes.

I promise to not make anymore changes ever again...well, at least not until my sister convinces me it is too dark or my nephew's poop starts showing up as black with pink specks in it.


Hunger Games BK 3

So I'm hearing from many of you that you haven't liked the ending to the third and final installment of the Hunger Games series. Though it has taken me an extraordinary amount of time to recover from the Storytelling Festival (more on that tomorrow--hopefully) and get back to blogging, I just thought I would say a little something about what I didn't like. But I'll say it in the comments so as not to give anything away to those who have not yet read it. If I haven't waited too long and your passion for what you didn't like hasn't fizzled, please fill me in on what you didn't like as well.

And then not one more word! Because the more I think about it the more I don't like it and the more stars I may have to go back and drop from my GoodReads review.