Thursday, December 27, 2012

Dear Rob Thomas...

You rock my world in a big way. And you always have.



Monday, November 12, 2012

Fine. Bye.

Well, even though less than a week ago I was basking in 70 degree November afternoons, given the storm that just took the Salt Lake Valley to the woodshed this weekend, it's time to finally say goodbye to summer and balmy fall.....

You showed us a good time, Summer. I miss you already. Try not to be late next year, it puts me in a mood.

Tuesday, November 6, 2012

What scares me the most about the presidential election....

...isn't that Obama will win and all of a sudden turn into the Muslim anti-christ and rule the country like Stalin....

.... and it isn't that Romney will win and bring back serfdom and forced sterilization.

It was a girl in her early to mid-20s who Toad and I had come across while not purchasing brownies and Mrs. Fields in Fashion Place Mall. We had voted that day and still had the "I Voted Early" stickers slapped on our shoulders. (Poll greeters were exceptionally lively that day and didn't mind getting up in your grill to put the sticker on).

"Who'd you vote for?!" she asked with baffling enthusiasm.

"In which race?"

"Ummmm, ya know," she said with a vacant yet deer in the headlights stare. "The election thing."

Mother of mercy.

Thursday, October 18, 2012

A morning guffaw

This is why she is my best friend.... I've been enjoying these little gems for 15 years.

Monday, October 8, 2012

Sticky situation....

I will be voting for Obama. I don't carry the oddly common tendency to keep who you are voting for secret (I am looking at you middle-aged Idahoans), and I don't care if the world knows who I am supporting. Living in Utah, where it is pretty much politically homogenous (though LDS Dems are making a valiant effort) it's always refreshing to see an Obama bumper sticker, not only because of my own political stance, but because it gives me the illusion of living in a diverse state - I kinda feel the same way when I see a black person in Orem.

That said I have a dilemma of hypocrisy. I too will soon have an Obama bumper sticker on my hands. But here's the thing, I don't do bumper stickers. I think they are kind of tacky and I don't believe Abigale would wear it well. So while I so so appreciate seeing the sticker/magnet on other cars, I am not willing to do it in kind.


I might be willing, if pressed, to sport this one during the Halloween season.....

Someone get me one.

Friday, October 5, 2012


Well I've gone done and did it. I'm back in school. Sure I applied and was accepted earlier this summer. But I can't say I actually saw myself going through with it. In fact it wasn't until last week, after my first month of school that it really sank in that I was indeed doing this.

So that's my excuse for not blogging, lately or reading anything interesting. (BTW I did finish Miral and I give it an "Eh")

I was going to write post about my decision to go to school and how I was feeling about it blah blah. But the truth is there was never really any true epiphany that prompted it. I have always kind of felt like a slacker for not pursuing a master's degree and have been eyeing MPA programs for the last four years. So when one of my work friends invited me to go to some open house for the BYU MPA program in Salt Lake, I decided to check it out. I went, it sounded good, one thing led to another and I applied. I then changed my mind a few times, while Steph, who had been through that same program, kept nudging. I got accepted, went through the motions thinking we'll see how long this charade lasts. Then bam, what do ya know?! In school.

I won't bore you with all the details but so far so good. It's interesting, I'm learning a lot and it hasn't buried me.....yet. I often feel like a fly in the milk, though I suppose it's to be expected when most of my class is from Provo/UTCo. And you better believe I have stories for days. But lets get one thing clear. I am not, nor ever will be a "Cougar." My program happens to be run through a Salt Lake arm within the BYU institution. That is it and that is all.  So call me estudiante for the next few years, and feel free to lie to me about how time flies on a regular basis. 'Preciate it.

Saturday, August 4, 2012

31 years with my big little broham...

Sure...... as kids I made him eat ants, put him in play "jail" when he misbehaved and we had multiple life threatening brawls where blood was drawn, glass was shattered, scars were made and things were broken. He would set things on fire, I would put them out. He performed surgeries on my barbies, I left nail marks on him still visible to this day. He's hit on my friends, I've dated his. He's been rude to my boyfriends and I've bullied his girlfriends. He left a dent in the side of my first car, I've aired his most embarrassing moments for all to see.


You can bet he stood up for me on that Nevada playground when those little bastards called me fat, and I defended him when those boys from his fifth grade class were about to beat him up for who knows what (but I am sure it was something for which he was indeed guilty.) We've built forts, formed clubs, wrote and performed plays (though he ruined most of them) and literally danced and sang high school.....on a stage... in front of hundreds of people. (Not our finest moments)  He's been there from the beginning and will always be my big little brother - even though he's been saying that he is older than me in "God's way" since he was five, I've never been clear on what that means.

(How does it feel to be 31?)

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Bam. That happened

Bargain shopping is like gambling. Once you start you can't get enough - especially at Bulward. Shopping Goddess Mele tipped me off to this place last year. Its major deals and this last Saturday you could spin a wheel to get up to 50 percent MORE off. I spun it and hit 50!! It was even more glorious because Toad was there to cheer me on and I got to actually see the bargain shopping addiction start to take hold in him. Excelllllllent.

Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Moments of Hilarity

There is a reason this girl is my best friend. She sent me this last night and it made me laugh out loud and then laugh again.

Secondly here's a little nugget out of Utah County that I thought was hilariously sad, but still hilarious. Apparently they decided to celebrate their "diversity" through shirt colors.

After Utah Valley Magazine was called out on its interesting use of the phrase the editor responded that it was supposed to be just "clever word play" and admitted that no they haven't employed actual women of color. "We don't. I definitely don't think we're ethnically diverse. But we did have an article in this issue about the first African American Miss Utah Teen USA." Hahahahahahaha. Oh Happy Valley.....

Friday, July 6, 2012

One Year

A year ago we pulled this off...

Deciding to get married was one of the scariest things I have ever done in my life. But looking back a year later it has been a total blast and I would do it again a thousand times over. He is the coolest, smartest, strongest, endearingly nerdiest, tallest, nicest, most patient guy ever, who makes me better (and nicer in general, I'm told). My crush just continues to grow on him.


.........Ugh, gushy and lovey, I know. But it's my damn blog and I will be mushy if I want to.

Thursday, June 28, 2012

The next best thing.... I guess

I was G-videoing J today and I told him to hold on because I had to leave my office for a few minutes. I returned to this.

Apparently I had left him hanging too long. Notice he even drew his missing tooth that just got pulled and is awaiting a bridge next month. Very detail oriented. I laughed forever.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

2fresh's brilliant complaint letter to UVU.

This gave me the giggles. And yes, she actually sent it....

Hello Academic Scheduling,
I am a returning student to UVU and am simply trying to add some classes for summer and fall term. This, however, is proving a ridiculously arduous task. While I agree that the "Dynamic Schedule" available online can be helpful when searching for specific courses, it is a poorly made program that does not allow for its user to go back one page, forcing its user to start from the very beginning any time an adjustment in the search needs to be made and cannot show multiple class listings, and therefore has the tendency to make its user pull out every strand of hair on his or her head (including eyebrows) before taking a running start and jumping off of the roof of a 10-story building. 

These frustrations could be easily relieved with an available link to the pdf files of each term's class schedule. I realize that the University Bookstore would most likely have this schedule available for purchase, but as I work during the week and live in downtown Salt Lake, it's not the simplest of tasks for me. Quite frankly, I am a little bit shocked that they are not readily available on the school's website. There is a Student timetable.... and a Course Catalog... so I thought that surely there must be a Class Schedule pdf that I just wasn't seeing. So I began my quest for this elusive file... but to no avail.

If it turns out that there is a pdf file link available on the University's website that I have somehow overlooked, I'd like to express my profoundest apologies. Futhermore, if this be the case, I'd like the whole Academic Scheduling department to accept a gift basket of their choosing upon the completion of my degree and subsequent degree-related job acquisition in 2022. 

I know that in a sea of undergraduate students, I am not even a blimp on your radar. Quite frankly, I wouldn't be the least bit surprised if no one even reads this e-mail and nothing is done. It's just the simple plea of a lowly subject on the bottom of the academic food chain.

Julie Calderon

Monday, June 18, 2012

A classic

One of my favorite homies came home from Ireland this month. He's a little bit skinnier, a tad more handsome and has a fun new accent where you can't tell if he is asking a question or making a statement. So to celebrate my broham's arrival/Father's Day/my mom's birthday we headed to Idaho for the weekend. 

I finally saw this little sassy princess, who I hadn't seen in almost a year.

I got to see my mother inexplicably attacked with silly string before she blew out her candles. (Is that a thing now?)

Then somehow this happened.....

And of course, things were shot.

A classic Idaho weekend.

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

On my jog this morning....

Granted it was like early in the morning and things were still fuzzy in my head, but the description of this place that came to mind at the time was "a gossamer forest".......

Now as the day has progressed, and my serotonin high has ebbed, it kind of just looks more like a bunch of cotton tree bi-product crap gumming up the place. Eh. Perspective.

Monday, June 11, 2012

New York

I had my cake and ate it too in New York. Figuratively and literally. And definitely too much cheesecake. When I imagine a dream vacation I generally have always thought of a beach and sun. So as we were planning this New York vacay/work conference trip, I underestimated what a blast it was going to be. J had never been so I thought it would be cool to show him the sights, and I had never stayed in Manhattan so I figured it would be a good time, but probably nothing to blow your hair back. I was mistaken.

First of all we began our trip with terror. We were taking the red eye, flying into JFK at 6 a.m., and were told that we wouldn't be able to check into our hotel til around 2 p.m. That would mean us wandering aimlessly for 8 hours exhausted and delirious because the 5 hours of sleep we planned to get on the plane didn't happen - not even a little bit. So when the lady at check in handed us our keys at 6:30 a.m. and said we had a room, I almost cried. Then I almost cried again when I saw it was the most beautiful perfect room looking right onto Time Square with the most comfortable bed with the most fluffy pillows....I probably would have burst into song but instead we blacked out the room and zonked out for 8 hours. But the good fortune of that morning alone was enough to know it was going to be one hell of a clambake.

We would walk out of our hotel to this. Every day and night. The first night I thought the over-stimulation would put me into a seizure. So later that week, when we were shamed by a local to get out of Midtown tourist circus to taste the native night life, we were more than willing. We did the hop on hop off double decker bus tour, which is becoming somewhat of a tradition, all over Manhattan and hit all the must dos. (the Empire State Building Sky Ride is not a must do, unless you want to fight barfing for 15 minutes. Yes I said 'barf.' I'm bringing it back.)

I got to further inform the Naked Cowboy about Mormons and that no we are not all voting for Romney. I am pretty sure I blew his mind. And I realized that the NBC store at 30 Rock is my Disneyland. We ended up doing the whole tour of the studios including SNL. Loved it. We tended to get a lot of attention from people. Maybe because we were giants or maybe because no one knows what a Samoan is out there. Either way people were definitely curious. J even became the center of attention, multiple times, at a comedy show - one comic apologizing for calling him gay after J admitted that he indeed knew what a duvet was. "I do apologize sir, I wouldn't want to make you mad, you look like you get up in the morning and stomp puppies." One just said out of the blue "What are you man? You're a big dude." 
Then we did the museum thing too.

I swear there are like a million museums there and no way to hit them all. But we spent the most time at the Natural History Museum. There is an entire section dedicated to rocks. Couldn't get enough.
But probably my fave of the whole week was Broadway.

I think it was back in high school when I put on my bucket list going to New York and seeing Broadway shows every night. It wasn't until the middle of the week that I realized I was actually doing that. Originally we had planned on just seeing Wicked and had bought the tickets in advance. But when there are theaters literally across the tiny street on either side of you and even one in your hotel, you really have no choice but to go nuts. Sure Wicked was great blah blah everyone knows that. Evita was also good pretty much because Ricky Martin carried it. But Ghost and Rock of Ages were amazingly brilliant. I cried through a sizable part of Ghost, when I wasn't whispering to J "How did they do that? Did you see that? How did they pull that off? I need to know!!!" And in Rock of Ages when I wasn't dying of laughter I was fighting the intense urge to throw my panties on stage. I am so glad we were willing to wait in a ridiculous line to get Rock of Ages tickets, especially since while waiting we got to experience being on this billboard. OK call me lame but I really got my giggles from it.  

Toward the end of the week we went turbo mode and we adopted the motto "we can sleep when we are dead." We started cramming everything in and even went to stuff that started past midnight. And as icing on the cake got to see my bestie Ange the last day at her figure competition. Of course she won.

 It was like putting all my faves into one week. Loved it.

Saturday, May 26, 2012

Grad Lad

I don't know about how I feel about our baby being all grown up. But I couldn't be prouder of this soon-to-be Aggie. I love you Toad. Congratulations!

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Can't. Freakin. Wait.

Maybe it's time I finish the book.

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Dirty thirties? Or is it Unsturdy thirties?

I think I am going from my early thirties to my early eighties in the space of a month. Within just the last two weeks I have been shuffling around due to an old hip injury flare-up, got passed by every car on the road during a spring squall on the 215 because I was certain I was going to hydroplane out of control. And from now to the foreseeable future I will be wearing heel inserts because of a fun new case of plantar fasciitus in my right foot due likely to jogging in worn-out running shoes. So yes. Heel inserts. Meaning I have to go buy frumpy shoes that support inserts and wear them all summer.....Even in the house......I am going to have house shoes....Yes that is happening.

But this weekend at the Living Traditions Festival I saw a woman that presented a vision of old age that I can really get down with. She had fashioned a wonky hat out of a bag, a pigeon feather I am sure she found on the street, and what appeared to be some grass and weeds. She was dancing and singing and wearing bright red lipstick, tons of jewelry, and doing pretty much whatever the hell she wanted. Can't wait.

Monday, May 21, 2012

A Gentleman and a Scholar

He may think Star Trek is the greatest creative work of all time, that Kloe Kardashian is the hottest Kardashian, and fail to understand why obsessions with comic books and fantasy sci-fi series are nerdy. But I couldn't love this flame of mine more. HAPPY BIRTHDAY Jun Bug! So glad you were born.

Tuesday, May 15, 2012


I have brown hair. But a lot of my friends have black hair and around their mid-20s, or even earlier, they started to find white hairs on their head. I'm not rude or anything but every once in a while I would give them a gentle ribbing about it, specifically my boyfriend who has a TON of random white hairs nested in a small area just above the right side of his frontal lobe. Well, though I am yet to find nary a grey or white strand on my head, I found this little present today. A white hair in my eyebrow.
IS THIS NORMAL?? I am thinking it's probably because my eyebrows are black. But I haven't seen this phenomenon on any of my prematurely white-haired friends. Are my eyebrows going to turn salt and pepper while my hair stays a solid brown?  Is this a random incident or is this hair merely a scout, paving the way for the rest of them. I need answers. Anybody?

Monday, May 14, 2012

It's not as bad as it looks.....

It's been a rough week despite the nearly perfect weather. Doing some yard work last weekend I awakened the heinous beast which can never be killed a.k.a. a hip misalignment born during my glorious shot-put discus years - and by glorious I mean luke-warm mediocrity. It comes around every year or so (this time two years to the day) brought on by the most random things like throwing a trash bag into a dumpster, shaving my left leg or trying to do a somersault. This time it was trying to start a lawn mower that threw my pelvis out of alignment. So Tuesday I went to the dreaded chiropractor and did the whole song and dance. After that I went in and out of a muscle relaxer fog for a few days, and as predicted by the chiro, I had to go back in for one more adjustment on Saturday. Well I have had two different people accompany me to get adjustments before, J and Taualai, and both have said it's pretty grueling to watch. I believe Lai described it as "it made me want to throw up." It's really rather painless when he does it, so I could never really believe that it looked all that bad. So on Saturday J went with me and decided to record it. You can actually hear it pop. My favorite is J's horrified whispered "oh my gosh" at the end.

So now it's just waiting for the soreness to ebb. I am looking forward to the moment this week when I can sit normally and put on pants without swearing. But it's not all bad. Last night I made this happen.
Yes, that would be my gentleman lover painting my toes. I mean really it makes sense. I actually think I am on to something here, I mean he does water colors on canvas so how can toes be all that different?

Anyway today, when I was feeling particularly annoyed about the situation, I watched this video that 2fresh posted.

Ya, ok I can get over a sore hip for a week. Thanks for giving me some perspective Arthur.

Friday, May 4, 2012

He Joaned it

You know back when you were in little league and you were on one of the best were so good that when you played some of the weaker teams you would win soundly, but by like the third inning your coach would start putting in the nose-picking bench riders because he wanted it to still be a game and maybe lessen the humiliation of the other team? Yeah? Me too. But my baby brother never played little league.
Toad's toothpick tower for senior Physics. It was supposed to be built to hold 50 lbs. You're looking at 550 lbs. sitting on his tower. How is it that an 18-year old can make you feel like an underachiever?

Joan: (verb) Doing something to the extreme; utmost or exceedingly great in degree, (example: I wanted the house to be spotless so I rolled up my sleeves and joaned it.)

Thursday, May 3, 2012

Front Runner South - 12.2012

It will be my Christmas present from UTA. Can't Freakin wait.

Monday, April 30, 2012

It's the best - easily in my top 5

Everyone should read this book. EVERYONE. Not only because it's a gripping story told in a way that you can't stop turning pages but also because it's true - not just a true story but everything is painfully real. You hear stories about WWII and you know the basics and you've seen Hollywood portrayals. But Unbroken tells the experience as it applies to real people. You see their fear, their weaknesses, their strength and their wins in a very real and relatable way. It made me understand the war, this country and the sacrifices and profound challenges that WWII veterans went through, especially those who fought in the Pacific. Their triumphs are so real you cry, their pain is so real you ache and you come out of it with such a fierce appreciation for those who went through WWII, both at home and in combat, that it's hard to contain.

If this glowing review isn't enough to convince you to give it a read, well they are making a movie. It's set to come out in 2013 and there is noWAY you are going to get everything out of it that you can by just the film alone.

Friday, April 27, 2012

She done did it again.....

So I should probably stop posting every time she accomplishes something amazing because if I did every post would be about her. And frankly she needs to get her own damn blog that I can link to... But yes, she has done it again. This month Ange was chosen as one of the NPC Athletes of the Month. The best part is is that she is all real, no supplements, drugs etc. - just hard work. Really really hard work.
Oh yeah, and by the way she also took 1st place in her figure class Emerald Cup Competition in Washington this month. There is definitely a pattern here. I'm so proud but still can't believe this is the same girl that would rarely where shorts when we were in high school because she wanted to hide her legs haha. Congrats AnHala!!!

Saturday, April 21, 2012

A spring break story...

My parents, J and I took the baby bro on a spring break trip to SoCal so he could visit the ocean for the first time as well as Vegas. Though it will likely be my first and last leisure road trip to any where that is more than five hours away, it was quite the clambake.

This story is sponsored by Instagram, Instagram: Over-processing mediocre cell phone photos at the click of a button!
First stop, Vegas! Well actually it was more like the fourth of fifth stop between snack breaks and bladder emergencies.

We were fancy and opted for the hotel WITHOUT bed bugs. I stayed here for the first time when I was 12. Nothing had changed. Nothing.

Walking the strip..... Ok let's be honest. Buffet-bound!

Bellagio fountains. This is just before the song started, being what Toad thought was titled "Let's be a Lady Tonight."

Volcano at the Mirage. It was still pretty cool but apparently I had a flashback to this time last year and thought I was posing for engagement photos.

Finally the beach.

Then somehow this took place.

Hiked this.

Did some whale watching and saw these. (Sorry about the series of unfortunate events that took place on this boat, Ma.)
Still not cool with stingrays.

Then somehow this happened.