Archive for October, 2011


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This is me. This is what a thousand words could never describe. This is the depth of my soul naked and exposed.


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We went on a romantic getaway to Boise this weekend.
The start was…not good. We left 2.5 hours later than planned and I was so upset I spent most of that time in the temple avoiding lightning.
Friday was, however, fantastic. David and I had bfast in a quaint cafe before we went on a walk along the Boise river with Lisa and Abby (a golden retriever). We spent an hour throwing rocks into the river and Abby would fetched them. She was really in her element. We even got her to swim across the river by throwing rocks farther and farther all the way to the other shore. Was really fun.
Then Lisa and I went shopping while David went to see his Dad at the office. Frankly, he should have known better than leave me unsupervised…I bought my very own and very first set of dishes–a rite of passage for all domestic divas.
The day got even better…we all went golfing!!! It was a blast. Lisa and I had never been golfing and though David had been to a driving range he had never done 9 holes. Lisa and I first approached our golf clubs kinda like shovels because there was whole lotta grass flying everywhere…but not many balls. Next, we moved from gardening to minigolf. It was improvement but it did not earn us respect. Finally, we got some balls airborne…yes, yes, yes. I wont mention our sense of direction though. ;) Anyway, Bill apparently has a double life in which he is a professional golfer and David can hit as far the eye can see. We also raced our golf carts and chased ducks.

In the evening David and Bill had manly bonding over dinner while Lisa and I went to a RS activity.
What a day!!!

On Saturday, Lisa, Janet (David’s aunt), and I went hiking around the foothills. It was glorious. Then David took us to the Boise Farmer’s Market and some more shopping. We caught the end of the BSU game over lunch. That night we had a Litster dinner at the house. Lisa is an amazing hostess and we had a great time being girly together.

We got back late Sunday. David and I really like Boise and talked quite a bit about possibly moving there. But Bill would first have to commit to only 2 phone calls a day. ;) And that will never happen.

Well, it is Monday night, I had an awful day as my allergies raged out of control. Finally, at five I managed to pull myself together enough to go and get my meds.
My costume for Princess Peach is done though the wig itches like a bad rash.
Oh, I got Halloween “pumpkin” bread bowls and I will be making potato soup tomorrow. Very excited. I look forward to Macey’s starting to sell those bread bowls every fall.

Very tired. Rambling.


Romantic Breakfast Nook

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Sandy and I are breakfasting at this quaint little cafe called The Trolley House in Boise,  ID, while on a romantic getaway.

Basket case

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I went insane yesterday.
Mom and I continued our family history recording about my Grandpa. I pretty much cried through the whole thing moving from my sleeve to a kitchen towel. I miss Grandpa so very much. After that I went from hyper to exhausted, from blissful to sad, and then from excited to bored. When I got home from school, I watched the end of “Tangled” which I also hysterically cried through. David found me a mess with giant red puffy eyes. So, he cuddled me and calmed me down. Unfortunately then I went to read the news about a couple who died within minutes of each other after 72 years together–holding hands. That set off the crazy again. But it would not be David if he did not solver the problem–we watched McGyver and the A-team until I fell asleep.
Oh, I screwed up the salsa I was going to can yesterday. My blurry, cried out eyes measured out double the vinegar. Ugh.
Nurition: Costco chocolate chip cookies…frozen and in great quantities.

Well, it is Thursday morning and I am determined to have a normal, productive day. Wish me luck. I am starting with hiking the Y to work off those darn cookies. Hmmm. Might have to hike it twice.


Americans now owe more on student loans than on credit card

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Students and workers seeking retraining are borrowing extraordinary amounts of money through federal loan programs, potentially putting a huge burden on the backs of young people looking for jobs and trying to start careers.

The amount of student loans taken out last year crossed the $100 billion mark for the first time and total loans outstanding will exceed $1 trillion for the first time this year. Americans now owe more on student loans than on credit cards, reports the Federal Reserve Bank of New York.

Students are borrowing twice what they did a decade ago after adjusting for inflation, the College Board reports. Total outstanding debt has doubled in the past five years — a sharp contrast to consumers reducing what’s owed on home loans and credit cards.

Taxpayers and other lenders have little risk of losing money on the loans, unlike mortgages made during the real estate bubble. Congress has given the lenders, the government included, broad collection powers, far greater than those of mortgage or credit card lenders. The debt can’t be shed in bankruptcy.

The credit risk falls on young people who will start adult life deeper in debt, a burden that could place a drag on the economy in the future.

“Students who borrow too much end up delaying life-cycle events such as buying a car, buying a home, getting married (and) having children,” says Mark Kantrowitz, publisher of

“It’s going to create a generation of wage slavery,” says Nick Pardini, a Villanova University graduate student in finance who has warned on a blog for investors that student loans are the next credit bubble — with borrowers, rather than lenders, as the losers.

Full-time undergraduate students borrowed an average $4,963 in 2010, up 63% from a decade earlier after adjusting for inflation, the College Board reports. What’s happening:

•Defaults. The portion of borrowers in default — more than nine months behind on payments — rose from 6.7% in 2007 to 8.8% in 2009, according to the most recent federal data.

•For profit-schools. The highest default rates are at for-profit schools that tend to serve lower-income students and offer courses online. The University of Phoenix, the nation’s largest, got 88% of its revenue from federal programs last year, most of it from student loans.

“Federal student loans are like no other loans,” says Alisa Cunningham, research chief at the Institute for Higher Education Policy. “The consequences are so high for making a mistake.”

This story first appeared in USA Today.

Hell has frozen over

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I am canning. All by myself. Totally unsupervised.
The whole house smells of grapes. I am pretending I am in the middle of a vineyard. Maybe the south of France or Napa. In any case, I have extensive sun-kissed grounds.
Could not sleep last night. Woke up at 3 am. Did HW, cleaned, and set up the whole canning assembly line. Convient because after my Y hike this AM, all I had to do is boil water and the show was on the road.
I am having a great time. I love listening for the lids to pop to signal that the jar is sealed. It fills me with a great sense of accomplishment–a pat on the back from Martha Stewart herself.

Today was also pivotal because I finally started recording my family history. I made a Skype appointment with Mom to tell stories about my Grandpa. Today we covered his childhood and his service in the French Foreign Legion and British Military Police. It was ABSOLUTELY AMAZING. The final product will be a DVD with the stories and scanned copies of his pictures and documents (he got a presidential medal for bravery in the liberation of Czechoslovakia). I am thrilled. Tomorrow, we will be covering Grandpa’s life after Dad was born.

I am really overwhelmed with gratitude and happiness.



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I am married to the most amazing man…
David has been growing his mustache so he could be Mario for Halloween…and I Princess Peach. However, while his costume is absolutely awesome, my prospects were less than great and consequently my support for the idea dwindled. So, David secretly reached out to Jennie, the diva, who brought over two very pink dresses, a giant skirt poof, and white gloves!!! Many loves to both of them. All I now need is a blonde wig, a crown, and the signature necklace. Piece of cake. We also still need to get Jonnie to be Luigi.
David, I love you. You are so sweet.

Additionally, David helped me with the second batch of apples for drying. Seriously, he has been amazing.

Oh, on Sunday, an older lady approached David to tell him what a beautiful voice he has. I am used to it. All the old racoons in the ward are in love with David and wish to push me off a cliff. I usually solve the situation by grabbing David’s butt….this man is mine, back off. However, this lady was so emotional, she was crying…that threw me off. Need to watch out for her. ;)

We went on a drive to Cascade Springs in the afternoon. The leaves are absolutely gorgeous. We live surrounded by such beauty. It felt good to take time and just be in awe.

The Patriots won over the Cowboys!!! Go Brady.

Finally, we had a wonderful family dinner with Jennie, Jonnie, and his new lady love.

This morning I picked two boxes of grapes which I will be juicing all day tomorrow. I am very excited. Domestic diva all the way. (The unemployed me is apparently very mormon.)




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I was expecting to spend all of Saturday peeling, cleaning, and juicing apples but luckily David was half an hour late for bfast I hosted for our neighbors so he was in a repentant mode…which in this case meant he turned into a peeling and juicing machine. We got everything done within a couple of hours. I still have a second batch to dry and I bought some bananas as well but that will be a breeze. The final booty is two gallon bags of dried apples and about four gallons of apple juice.

Shockingly, I am also inspired to can some salsa and grape juice. What has become of me?


Apples. Apples. Apples.

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My life has been taken over by apples.
I am not complaining.
I have about 40 lbs of apples sitting in my kitchen right now ready to be dried and juiced. I have been helping my friend this week with the same project and it is my turn this weekend. Tomorrow AM I pick up the dryer and the juicer and operation “Keep the Doctor Away” will be launched.
For the record, I don’t can. My only success so far has been canned salsa and grape juice. The thing is that David does not like canned fruit and frankly while I do have a real interest in learning this mormon voodoo I get easily distracted when I see a can of peaches at Macey’s for a dollar while the homemade variety would cost double that.
Anywho, these apples were for free and both David and I could live off of dried apples and apple juice. And the way it looks, we just might for the next couple of weeks.

I also decided to broaden my bfast food horizons. Today I tried cream of rice, tomorrow I am making millet and Sunday buckwheat.
My parents say that I was a cream of wheat addict until the first day of first grade when I apparently decided it was unworthy of my educated self. Well, three years ago during an anniversary trip to the East Coast, we stayed with David’s sister in New Hampshire and she made it for bfast one morning and…well, my life has been happier every since. To be totally honest, remember the part in Ratatouille (best movie ever) when Anton Ego tastes Remy’s Ratatoille and he is brought back to his childhood? That is exactly how it felt eating cream of wheat after 20+ years.

Cream of rice was about 6 out of 10. Not revolutionary but palatable. Nothing condensed milk and cinnamon can’t fix. I have eaten millet and buckwheat a lot when I was in Russia. Babushka would make it for me pretty much for every bfast. I tried making it once before but it was not a success, so I am trying again.

What else?
Oh, of course…soap boats. First of all, soap does not float. So, it was more like a soap submarine race–in any case, the cubs had a blast. David and I had so much fun watching the boys cheer on their crafts. Of course, half of them got their shoes totally wet in the cheerleading of it all.



Most distressing

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I was driving home from school today listening to 94.1 Oldies…totally grooving…when I noticed the car in front of me had a fake leg sticking out of its trunk. To my absolute horror I realized that I have not decorated George for Halloween yet!!!!
I am very ashamed. Good ol’ George has not even said anything?!! Not at all like Marge. Marge would have had none of this. Her brakes would be screetching at me till there was blood. Pun intended.
Anywho, I must remedy the situation asap.

Other news…decided to be active for once and went to a RS Temple Night yesterday…hmmm…was just me and the RS president. Seriously????

I am totally obsessed with making fresh tortillas.

I herded chickens yesterday!!!! I had never done it before and was quite skeptical but turns out I am a natural. Was very fun. Maybe I am a mother hen after all??!!

My fall endeavors continue: tomorrow I will be drying apples.

Oh, and we will be making soap boats with the cubs tomorrow and sailing them in the BYU canal. I must admit–I am freakin’ excited.

Much loves.