Friday, November 20, 2009

Thankful Friday Night - A Cheeseball of a Post

Love does not consist in gazing at each other, but in looking outward in the same direction. - Antoine de Saint-Exupéry's "Le Petit Prince"

My best friend from elementary school, Kami, is organizing a bloggy thingy wherein a bunch of bloggers, for the month of November, make a list of five things they’re thankful for every Thursday. I’m late. And because I am loquacious and I don’t want this post to be a gazillion words long, I’m just writing about my first point of gratitude: Nathaniel.

Growing up, I didn’t think I would get married. My parents are divorced, so marriage didn’t seem like the norm. When I saw myself older, I saw myself in business professional with a large paycheck and a great apartment. A husband? Not so much. When I entered BYU, I thought I might get married, but that marriage would be a huge trial and would require constant effort to make it work.

I never would have imagined that at age 26 I would be in the best relationship I could want.

When Nathaniel and I were talking about getting married, I knew marriage was a huge leap of faith because I couldn't completely control the outcome. But Nathaniel didn't hide a thing and I knew I could trust him. I knew I wouldn’t be making a mistake if I married him.

I assumed that the easy stage couldn’t last forever. I kept waiting for it to wear off. I told Nathaniel, “I wonder when marriage will start getting hard?” Nathaniel said, “Don’t think like that. That’s like assuming the greenie magic has to wear off. It doesn’t.” And it hasn’t. I feel like I just stumbled onto the best marriage I could possibly have.

Things are different now than when we were dating. I don’t get butterflies in my stomach every time he walks into the room. He hardly ever puts on the aftershave that I love. I don’t make an effort to be as witty or as put-together like I did then. We don’t talk incessantly about how much we love each other and how great our relationship is (but I don’t think we ever did that, I hope).

Things aren’t the same, but they are really better. Sure, butterflies can be fun, but nothing is better than being in a relationship with a person who is interesting, who knows you and truly loves you, who understands and empathizes, who encourages you to fulfill your goals AND who loves your child almost as much as you love her. That is our marriage.

For this I am grateful. Happy Thanksgiving.


Thursday, November 12, 2009

Hi, my name is Dorothy and I am an internet addict

So something like this happened to me the day before yesterday:

48-Hour Internet Outage Plunges Nation Into Productivity

BOSTON—An Internet worm that disabled networks across the U.S. Monday and Tuesday temporarily thrust the nation into its most severe maelstrom of productivity since 1992.

"In all my years, I've never seen anything like this," said Price Stern Sloan system administrator Andrew Walton, whose effort to restore web service to his company's network was repeatedly hampered by employees busily working at their computers. "The local-access network is functioning, so people can transfer work projects to one another, but there's no e-mail, no eBay, no It's pretty much every office worker's worst nightmare."

According to Samuel Kessler, senior director at Symantec, which makes the popular Norton Antivirus software, the Internet "basically collapsed" Monday at 8:34 a.m. EST

Shortly after office workers found their web, e-mail, and instant-messaging capabilities disabled, reports of torrential productivity began to reach corporate offices nationwide.

"My first thought was 'My God, this has to be some kind of mistake,'" said Prudential Insurance executive vice-president Shane Mullins of San Francisco. "My e-mail wasn't working. wasn't working. I eventually found out that the company web site wasn't working, either. But by that time, my inbox was filling up like you wouldn't believe."

Enlarge Image 48-Hour Internet Outage Plunges Nation Into Productivity jump

The Internet outage forced a Minneapolis couple to tackle a task they'd put off for months.

"My actual physical inbox," Mullins added. "It's this gray plastic thing on my desktop—the top of the desk I sit at."

With workers denied access to, Salon,, and Friendster, employers struggled to keep up with the sudden increase in efficiency.

"Our office was working at roughly 95 percent efficiency," said Steven Glover, an advertising executive and creative team leader at Rae Jaynes Houser. "It's problematic to have the rate jump like that—it sets a precedent that will be impossible to maintain once the Internet comes back."

Glover said his department failed to reach 100 percent productivity only because employees stopped work every few minutes throughout the outage to see if Internet service had been restored.

"This is terrible," said Miami resident Ron Lewison, an employee at Gladstone Finance and an Top 500 Reviewer. "For two days, I've been denied access to the vital information I need to go about my workday. In the absence of that information, I've been forced to go about my job."

According to Labor Department statistics, companies affected by the Internet outage generated an estimated $4 to $6 billion in extra revenue.

"Losses to online retail companies will be considerable, " said Jae Miles, senior financial economist at Banc One Capital Markets in Chicago. "Nevertheless, the outage's overall impact on the national economy will be a positive one. The losses should be easily offset by the gains to companies that depend primarily on people finishing actual work."

As of press time, many administrators had begun to apply a patch that combats the Gibe-F worm.

"Thank God, Earthlink service is back, and with it, online shopping and entertainment news," office worker Emily Jaynes said at 7 p.m. Tuesday. "I'm ready to head home now. I couldn't bear to spend another evening repainting furniture and using my pool."

Financial experts say they hope to have detailed data on the economic impact of the outage within the next 24 hours.

"When American office workers are denied access to vast, complex streams of ever-fluctuating and evolving information, they tend to get a lot done," said Nicole Dansby, a business-information analyst employed by the New York Stock Exchange. "The extended Internet outage may or may not have had something to do with the Dow's 278-point jump Tuesday. I'll have to, you know, check the web for a few hours and get back to you."

I realized I was addicted to the internet and I made Nathaniel disconnect it. I got so much done. So now it's back and here I am, blogging. I might have to have him take it again.


Sunday, November 8, 2009

Discouragement and Inspiration

Do you ever have those moments when you know you should just do something, but it seem so hard and you don't know where to start, so you don't do it?

I know I need to be better. I need to take the focus of my life off myself and make Christ the center of my existence. I know I need to learn to be like Him.

But how? How do you delve into a task that seems impossible and that you don't fully understand? I don't know.

So I don't think about it much. I allow myself be content with doing just enough and let the distractions take me away from uncomfortable thoughts of my shortcomings.

Then I got the conference Ensign and read this:

"My dear brothers and sisters, don't get discouraged if you stumble at times. Don't feel downcast or despair if you don't feel worthy to be a disciple of Christ at all times. The first step to walking in righteousness is simply to try...Try and keep on trying until that which seems difficult becomes possible-and that which seems only possible becomes habit and a real part of you."

I love my church.


Friday, November 6, 2009


I haven't been getting many hours at work because, well, I don't really know why. So I've been doing other stuff. It's been fun.

When I was in high school and college, I thought "homemaking" meant getting together with a bunch of old ladies and making crap like this:

I am proud to say that I always hated that aesthetic. I am not proud to say, however, that I got my ideas about interior design from a Baby Sitter's Club book. Remember the one where Kristi's mom marries a rich guy? You hire an interior designer, look through some books, pick out what you want, and then you're done. I'm also not proud to say that all my ideas about fashion came from the Baby Sitter's Club books, too, but that's another post entirely.

Sadly, I'm not joking about that.

Anyway, on my recent trip to Hawaii, my aunt Cynthia (technically Nathaniel's aunt but I claim her) gave me an entirely new perspective on the whole thing. Before, I threw random framed art on the wall and I was happy with our model home furniture. I figured I would just wait until I or Nathaniel started making some money and then buy a model room from Ikea or even hire an interior designer.

And then Cynthia came along. We flipped through some interior design magazine clippings she had in a binder and she encouraged me to find which ones I liked and figure out why I liked them. Later, she gave me a link to a design blog (design sponge) and I am hooked. One of the best things I read since I've been looking at this stuff--which has only been about a month now--is that too many people worry about whether or not stuff goes together. It's better to just find things you love and surround yourself with them.

I looked at pictures of beautiful rooms adorned with beautiful collections of plates, leaves, random artwork, etc. I asked myself what I love most and would want around me, and my thoughts went to my family.

Okay, before I show you what I did, a disclaimer is in order: I am not a decorator of any sort. I am not posting this because I recommend you do the same, but because it represents my discovery of a way I can make my life better and I'm excited about it. All right? All right.

I did this:

That picture makes it look so bad I want to laugh at it! I promise, if you came over you'd like it. It might not be your thing, but you'd like it.

As for me, I love it. The photos I picked out are my absolute favorites and I love the way the frames are very deep so it gives some interest to the wall. Or whatever.

It's not much, I know that. And it makes me wish we had a white slipcover for our couch. But still, I love that I figured out what I liked and went for it.

The whole idea of decorating is still intimidating for me. I always considered it as something that other people did or were good at. But I'm so glad Cynthia encouraged me to be okay with failure. I really do want this little Wymount apartment to be a place where I feel good and that I love, and I'm working on it. And, I'm so glad that the term homemaking doesn't necessarily conjure images of strange creatures with raffia anymore.



Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Externship and Six Month Stats

Nathaniel is amazing. I'm sorry, I know e-bragging is kind of gross, but he is. He is an incredibly hard worker and has a knack for legal reasoning. He impressed his legal writing teacher so much that her glowing recommendation got him a slot as a clerk for a judge here:

at the US Court of Federal Claims in Washington D.C. The court hears claims against the governent arising under the US Constitution, federal statutes, etc. It's an Article I court for my friends who took federal courts. Nathaniel won't get paid, but gets six hours of school credit, which is awesome because then he can take fewer credits later on.

Ugh, have you ever tried to write a blog post after you ate half a stick of butter? It's a lot harder than it sounds. I was just experimenting and made apple butter crisp and it's very hard for me to be moderate when it comes to butter.

Summer had her six month appointment yesterday. She is in the fiftieth percentiles for weight and head circumference and the tenth percentile for height. I just looked it up and I'm in the twentieth percentile for height, so I don't have high hopes for Summer.


Monday, November 2, 2009

Six Months

Today, Summer is half a year old.

Summer was a very beautiful newborn. Six months ago, when I saw bigger babies, I didn't think they were nearly as beautiful and little and fragile as our brand new Summer. I wanted to cherish the moments when she was like that because I knew they wouldn't last long.

They didn't, and thank goodness. I didn't know then that newborns suck. After the first week, they just scream and poop. They can't even hold their heads up or smile or look at you. I didn't realize at the time how hard things were. I think I liked it, but why I liked it I don't know. How I ever got through those first months is a mystery.

Actually, I lied. Nathaniel got me through those first months.

Six months, however, is amazing. Summer has been smiling all the time lately. She creeps/army crawls to get to her toys, her favorite being daddy's old laptop. She doesn't laugh all the time, but when she does it's the best thing in the world. She has moved from just eating stuff to eating it, then giving it a few shakes, then eating it again. She gets so excited about just about anything. It's so fun taking care of her.

And the best thing is that I think she likes me back. It's just pure joy. That's all. This is mushy. I'm sorry.

Oh, and she's helping me figure out how to hang pictures.

Hey, Summer!

What's your favorite frame?

That one? Mine, too.

And, Nathaniel got an internship (unpaid) in Washington DC. Cool, huh?