Tuesday, December 23, 2008

My New Christmas Career

I LOVE Christmas.  I love to give gifts and I love to open them.  However, the whole process of people getting me gifts makes me stressed out.  I hate telling people "No, I really like the gift, I just maybe would have chosen a different color..." because that really means, "I don't like this gift, but I feel bad for saying it."  And I do. I feel AWFUL for saying it.

When I was 5 my mom bought me a pair of pink cowboy boots.  They were a soft pink leather with a glitter lightening bolt down the side and pink leather fringe.  I kid you not.  I think about them now and one word comes to mind: awesome.  However, at age 5, I opened these boots on Christmas morning and as soon as I saw them I BURST into tears. Bawling. I hated those boots.  But I was not crying because I hated them so much I was crying because I knew I was going to have to tell my mom I hated them.  The whole thing seems a bit odd to me:

Don't you think the tears would have given away my extreme dislike?

Way for me to be an extremely sensitive 5 year old.

Nice style sense Bonnie. What were you thinking? Those things were money.

I feel like if I would have kept those boots I may be a country singer and not a seminary student.

So this Christmas I am bound and determined not to cry because I am afraid someone's feelings will get hurt, but even more I am going to look for a career opportunity in my gifts.  My mom always tells me she wont buy me a surfboard until I learn to surf.  I tell her that it's too much work to rent one, if I just owned  one I would surf the waves like I was born to do it.  So I just feel like this year could be the year, that someone will get me a gift that will just turn my life around, and this is what I asked for:

Gift: Exercise workout DVD               
Career: I am loud enough, I could totally do that

Gift: Hanson Take the Walk Shoes      
Career: Shoe Model. Missionary

Gift: Canon Digital Camera                  
Career: Professional Photographer. Small sales to my mom on Etsy

Gift: Roxy Surf Board                          
Career: Enough said.

Monday, December 22, 2008

Mac Tip #9: Undo and Redo

Sometimes when I am blogging or typing a love letter of sorts I write things and I want to scribble it out and change it and have it still look really professional.  Cause that's what I am: a professional blogger and lover.

So clearly I can not take a sharpie and scribble out the mistakes on my screen, although I did that once when I was three to my mom's friend's new Apple II e.  Oops.

So when I make a mistake and I choose a poorly written word, or I need to just simply start with a clean state after the first paragraph I wrote, I simply push:

"Apple key + Z" and the mistake disappears.

But then, in a moment of sanity when I decide that my word choice, before I deleted it, was actually GENIUS and I am sad that erased the word, or entire page, I simply push:

"Apple key + Y" and what was taken away, is now back!

Editor's tips and tricks.  Easy as pie. Apple pie.

Friday, December 19, 2008

Boys vs. Girls: Tug of War

Hey Ladies.

I have a bit of news for you that the male population would like you to know.  Be it your boyfriend, your dad, your husband, your coworker, your neighbor, your mailman; they all would like this info made known.

If they are: tired, hungry, or sick, they are the most tired, the most hungry, and the sickest that anyone has ever been. Ever. And ever will be.

And in case you think that you could understand the agonizing pain they are in, you can't.  Because you have not been working, going to the store, cooking, or trying to do anything that would cause you to use energy.  No.  Instead you have been lying around all day (every day) sleeping and eating, so you are constantly renewing your energy source and also  by nature "healthy" is your middle name.

So please, when you hear a male say they are really tired, or extremely hungry, or that this time they are so sick you would not understand how much their throat hurts; please do not try to empathize, that's insulting to their pain.  But, take that as a warning and gear up, because this time wont even come close to the discomfort they will be in next time.

Breakfast? I'm sorry I can't, I'm Apparently Not Smart Enough

We got a really awesome toaster oven as a wedding gift and I must admit that I am truly thankful for it.  With regular toasters, I get a little stressed out that they are not actually working.  I have had so many in which it is time for the bread, or pop tart, to do some actual popping, and nothing.  Later I find out that the spring is broken, the bread has been burned and I am cranky.

But one thing really confuses me about this toaster oven.  First of all, it's a toaster and an oven all packaged into one.  That must be why there are about 500 different options for heat, and broiling, and a timer, etc.  Which, let me say, it's small am I really going to be cooking a turkey in there?  Doubt it.

But really I am bitter about the whole thing, because I am beginning to think that my lack of trust for the toaster is not really the device.  I hate to admit it, but I think it's me.  I can't get a freaking piece of bread to be the right consistency no matter what I do.

I always have it at the same setting (mostly because the other ones are too complicated)
I always use the same timer

And one time it will be burnt to the crisp, and other days, like now, I am so disappointed that my english muffin is nothing more than a flimsy warm piece of carbs.  I mean really?  Is this some kind of joke?  Or how about yesterday when I made cheese rolls for Cy and the cheese melted everywhere inside the toaster oven, but no effect on the bread?  What is wrong with that thing?  Or me?

So as I sit and eat my half warmed, non melted buttered, flimsy piece of bread, that I realize there is so much to learn and life and frankly is daunting if I can't even figure out the toaster over.  I'm going to have a zone bar instead, or should I say in addition to?

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

You Invade

It's been cold and rainy here lately.  I find myself going to sleep with the rain and waking to it as well. I adore it.  There is something about the weather moving and changing, interrupting our lives that reminds me of the existence of something much bigger than my daily life and mundane tasks.

As a little girl I can recall being deathly afraid of the rain.  My mom told me that God was moving the furniture, but as I pictured the giant couch being moved on the floors of heaven, I could not help but still shiver at the loudness of it all.  My fear was quickly replaced with awe as I would watch my dad seat himself in front of the big picture windows we had in Arizona and marvel at the lightening that one only sees in a National Geographic catalogue. This is coming from a man who once watched a tornado pass from the porch a block away, or he who wanted to drive slower so that we may see the green cloud in the Kansas sky turn into that dreaded funnel shape. Later, he took me to see Twister on the big screen.  I loved that date of ours. And he loves the storms.  The lightening had a way of illuminating everything around us, causing the rain to look as though it stopped mid air and for that second, the dark was gone and was replaced with light.

I began to love the rain that night.  Still, I hold a sweet memory of sitting on our plaid couch watching the dessert drops pour down as hard and as much as they want.  It stopped us in our tracks.  It changed the fear in me to wonder.  It illuminated the darkness around me and continually reminds me that always, no matter how dim or bright, the light will always shine in the dark.

So now, as I sit on my leather couch, hundreds of miles away from my dad, and years away from that fear, I am still moved by it all.  We are so blessed to have a God that invades our lives, because they are not really ours in the first place.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

Mac Tip #8: Putting Pettiness Aside

I left you in the cold yesterday  Mac users.  I am sorry, I had a final and babysat and yada, yada, yada.  Yes, potentially I could post another tip today, but in light of the Christmas spirit, I chose a video instead.


p.s. I have no idea what a video has to do with the Christmas spirit. Nothing, in fact.  

Friday, December 12, 2008

Buy and Give Back

This holiday, we can buy gifts that give back to others who are less fortunate.  Mama Manifesto  posted a bunch yesterday, and here are two more:

Krochet Kids International   

 Krochet Kids International is a non-profit dedicated to ending poverty by supplying skill training for "reliable income, education training and personal care"  through the sale of hand-crocheted hats to benefit women in Northern Uganda.  After extensive research on communities in Northern Uganda, Krochet Kids has selected 10 women based upon economic status, personal background and number of dependants for an opportunity to work for salary crocheting hats to be sold in the United States.    Most of these women are young adult orphans that are heading one or more households, those who have been displaced or abducted due to the war in Northern Uganda, and whose past has wrongly told them they do not have a future. They look for the least of the least.  These women are trained with skills to cochet for a good salary, and provide a sustainable income for their family.  In addition, these women are taught financial stewardship of budgeting, financial savings, and small business management, so they make continue this change for generations to come.

The Ugandan women of Krochet Kids crochet hats in many sizes, shapes and colors that they may be sold in order to be given back to the community.  100% of the proceeds goes back to the community in order to promote health care, education and clean water through local programs.  These community incentives allow for to establish a stable environment that will last for generations.

So help them out by keeping your ears and head warm! This Christmas, buy a hat.  For you, your mom, your brother, your youth group leader. Buying a hat is all it takes to support these women and these communities. You buy one hat for someone you know, and you help someone you don't.

Visit krochetkids.org for more information regarding their program, bios on the women who crochet, and the numerous knit hats you can purchase!

Toms Shoes
Beginning in May 2006, Tom's shoes is dedicated to supplying shoes for children around the world who do not have this luxury.  They have already donated 10,000 pairs of shoes to children in Argentina and 50,000 South Africa.  Their goal for 2008 is to give away 200,000 pairs of shoes to children in need.

 For every pair of shoes purchases, Toms donates a pair to a child in need.  One for One.  It's that simple.

 This Christmas supply a child with a pair of shoes; or four.  Purchase shoes for everyone in your family, on your worship team, or ask for them as a gift. Everyone loves shoes, and everyone needs them too. Easy as pie. This December, theyare trying to get 30k shoes in 30 days! 

 Visit tomsshoes.com for more information about the cause, to view their collection, shop online, or find a retailer closest to you. 

Thursday, December 11, 2008

Happy Birthday Mom!


Today is your Birthday, and as I think of today, I can't help but think of all the great days that led up to this moment.  You have always been right there beside me, comforting me when I was scared, sharing every story with me into the wee hours of the night, making my favorite dishes when I had a bad day, and your hugs and kisses remind me of my worth.  Although I could not pick favorites, because all of our memories are too good, here are a few to enjoy on your special day:

  • Remember when I was afraid of the dark (and dad putting me in the cold shower to stop crying), so I would sneak in your room and lay as flat as I could and as close up against you as I could, allowing your body's shadow to cover me so that Dad would not see?  It never worked, he always heard me.  But what I love about this is that you always let me try anyway.
  • What about the time that you taught me how to ride a bike?  It was those cute pink banana seat bikes that we got for Easter that one year.  You ran next to me again and again at that park by our house on 68th street.  I always got scared and let myself topple over, but you got me to try again and again.  I'll never forget when the practice paid off and you let go of the bike, and I began to pedal on my own.  I looked back at you, afraid to leave your side, and you yelled for me to keep going, "YAY Bonnie!"  so I kept going, around the track until I was next to you again.  I still feel like that today.
  • Remember the awesome birthday party that we decorated those SWEET cups with paint pens?  Then you duplicated it with the glasses at my bachelorette party.  You always remember things like that, and it means the world to me.
  • I have always loved when you sang me to sleep.  "Bonnie, Bonnie, Bonnie's in love..."  Now I am there, and I love him because you taught me to love first.
  • You have always been the best artist, remember that puff-paint whale on my lunch box? I love that, and secretly want another one.
  • You are the only one that consistently cares if Bebes has a seasonal outfit.  You made him those overalls with clouds and another with roses, and not to mention his heart sweater.  You will kiss him and I love that about you because you appreciate cute things. More than that, you know that Bebes has gotten me through some scared nights, lonely nights, plane rides and a trip to college; you understand the importance of being comforted.  Your voice is the best comfort to my heart each day.
  • You let me call you as many times as I want per day, and you never seem annoyed with me.  You listen to my stories, you encourage me, you laugh with me, cry with me, and you tell me that you are my best friend too.
  • You are the best example of God's love that I have seen.  The way you love your husband, your kids, and your friends is always inspiring to me.  Your gifts are plentiful, and you bless others just by your words of kindness and encouragement.                                                                           Thank you so much for loving me with so much grace and patience.  I can not even begin to express how much you mean to me.  You are my mom, my best friend, my encourager, my confidant, and a source of joy that I am thankful for each day that passes.  I love you so much mommy, and I can't wait until we get to live near one another.  I hope you have the BEST birthday because you deserve it!  
Happy Birthday Mom!  I LOVE You!!!!

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

It's Never Too Early to Start Parenting

Yes kids.  We would totally smoke you in a kissing tournament.

Parenting who?  My future kids.

I thought of the BEST way to freak them out and stop them from making out all the time, especially in our living room, or their room.
Bonnie! People don't make out on couches or in their rooms when they are teenagers. 

Um yes the do.  So relax, and get prepared.
When Cy and I catch one of our children playing tonsil hockey in our house, in the car, at the football game, or at the movies, we are going to go up right next to them and we are going to start making out too.  Yes that is right, we are going to show them that there is not just one team in the league, and that we too can toss that puck.
The natural response will be, "Mom and Dad, SICK!" And to that I will say, "What?  Are we too loud?"  Which will invoke vomit of some sort, and if our son or daughter throws up on his or her date, then there goes that date, no longer a worry.
Then, from that moment on, we are going to instill a rule, that if our son or daughter wants to kiss his or her girlfriend or boyfriend then they have to do it in the same room as me and Cy, like a make-out party. They will NEVER want to do this, and therefore they wont make out in our house, or anywhere near where they think we might just randomly "show up."  This is abstinence training at it's finest.
I told Cy this idea, and he looked so grossed out and like I needed help.  But true artists are never appreciated in their time.  

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

On Your Own: Foamy Latte

I wanted a bit of foam on my Chai the other day, but I just don't have the money for a machine that steams the milk, Starbucks style.

So instead, I relied on my trusty friend Google, and found a method that works great, and for free!

Just heat up some milk in a sauce pan on low to medium heat and when it begins to get warm, use a whisk and whisk away.  As the milk heats, the foam will form, and when it's the right frothiness, add it to the top of your drink!

I added sprinkles to mine too...I know, so very impressive:

Excuse the blurry photo.  Took it with my phone and I have not mastered the non-shaking hand yet.

Monday, December 8, 2008

Mac Tip #7: Spotlight and Spotlight Shortcut

Spotlight, located at the top right of your screen, is an easy way to quickly search for documents or applications without having to open the Finder window.  This can be beneficial if you already have lots of windows open and you don't want to open another, or you are not sure where your document or application is stored on your computer.  You can simply type in the name of whatever you are searching for in your computer and you will see a list of documents and applications come up on your computer!  Select the one you want, and you are good to go. It's like the "find it" feature on a PC, only you don't have to watch that flashlight roll around...and around....and around.

The Spotlight Icon, is found here, and looks like a magnifying glass:

You have two options to utilize this feature.  Either move your mouse there, click, and begin typing, or use this short cut:

Command + space bar

The spotlight function will pop up right away and you can start typing.  Once you type in the document name, use the arrow keys to navigate through the documents and once the one you want is selected, hit the "return" key to open it!  If you use the shortcut and decide you don't want to be in Spotlight anymore, then hit "command + space bar" and it will disappear.

Easy as pie!

Thursday, December 4, 2008

This Week is Not My Friend

I have been so incredibly MIA this week and this is why:

Monday: Worked instead of day off

Tuesday: Day off instead of worked, but internet is down.

Tuesday night:  5 hour retreat for Seminary

Wednesday:  Internet down, sat at Starbucks for an 8 hour work day and only got one Venti Earl Gray tea. Got called "cheap" I'm sure many times by the employees.

Wednesday night:  Meant to write a paper, but didn't.

Thursday: Work. Dropped my iphone and broke it. The screen goes back and froth between a black and white barcode or a blue and yellow striped Gap button-up.  

Thursday night:  This is now, let's hope that I: babysit, and then write my life away.  No internet and no phone....should be able to get something done.

Monday, December 1, 2008

Mac Tip #6: Quick Look

Sometimes, I want to see a document without actually opening it.  I want to look at the contents without waiting for the program to load.  Yes, I am that impatient.

Thankfully, Mac has shortcut to solve this issue.  It's called "quick look".  Quick look will only work if you have the leopard operating system (this is the newest operating system available).  This tip will allow you to find your document quickly and easily.  

Open your Finder.  
Click on your Documents folder.
Highlight a document that is most likely titled the same as all of your other ones (BonnieLewis1.doc, BonnieLewis1a.doc, etc.) and this is why you are confused.
Click the space bar.
Voila!  A small preview of the document will pop up on your screen.  Take a look at it, and when you are done, click the space bar again and it will disappear.  

You can do this for photos, itunes artwork, and really anything that is in your Finder.  If it's an application, then it will show you a larger version of the icon with the application information.

 It's like peek a boo but for your computer.  Easy, easy easy. 

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

GREENPEACE: Why Do You Give Me None?

Look, I am all for being passionate.  To have something you believe in and the effort to share it with others is a very courageous endeavor.  I don't care if it's your faith, your shampoo, your favorite recipe, or yourself when you were up for "most popular" in high school, I truly think that if you believe in it, then you should shout it from the rooftops. 

 I mean, done and done right?

"I scream, you scream, we all scream for ice cream!"
Could this be more clear?

"Say no to drugs."
Very, very clear.  In fact, we've established programs after this.

So please, shout out all you want.  But can we talk about this?  Can we try and be consistent with our policies?  For example, if Aretha demanded a bit of respect and then punched someone and called them a "loser" then I might question her motives.  Or if the ten year old who screamed for ice cream opted for a glass of lemonade, then well I would tell him that he should get his snacks straight.  Or even, Mr. D.A.R.E. was caught smokin' the hash, I might wonder where he drew the line for "drugs".

So, GREENPEACE. I get you.  I understand you are about going green, being friendly to the environment, and to keep the whales and the sea in mind.  I have seen your maps of the trash that is the size of Texas, and I have seen the sad whales that have been hurt. 

You showed me. 

On the street.

As you blocked my way and would not let me get away.  You showed me those photos up in Pasadena, and once was enough.  I don't want to see them anymore.  I don't want to see you at Albertsons, because when I tell you that I have already heard the pitch and that I have done all that I can, you don't believe me.  You actually question my honesty.  It's offensive.  Because if you don't beleive me, then how do you know that I am not lying to you when I "listen?"  How do you know that I am not preparing a banana cream pie to shove in your face at the perfect moment when you are pitching your story to me?  I mean, if you think I am lying, then why ask?

I especially do not want to see you outside of Trader Joes.  Because I watched you follow that poor old woman to her car and I watched you watch her put groceries in her car and you did not offer to help her.  In fact, you just grilled her on why she would not donate.

But today, you really went overboard with your tactics.  I confess, as I headed out of Trader Joes and I saw you with your clipboards with photos of Texan-sized-trash, I picked up my phone and called my mom.  I did it so that I would not have to talk to you.  I'm sorry.  But I knew that no matter how much I explained to you my thoughts, you would tell me that I was lying through the asking of your questions.  So I confess, I hid and I looked down, and you yelled to me, "Hey lady! Call waiting on line 2!  It's the EARTH!"

I may be more apt to listen to you, but I do not get your inconsistency.  You give me no peace to hear your story. 

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

Put a Ring on It

I love me some Beyonce.

Maybe I will just put a ring on her new song, Single Ladies.

Some people who do not appreciate her hip dance beats,  and totally awesome in da club vibe may question, "why, why miss Beyonce are you referring to yourself and the subsequently every one of us that blares this in our cars pretending that it is a totally normal thing for a 24 year old seminary student to be doing,  as an "it"?  Why do you say, "If you like it you should have put a ring on it?"

Because that does not even make sense.  What else do we put rings on of things that we like?

I like this mac and cheese, let me put a ring on it.
I like this shirt, let me put a ring on it.
I like this book, let me put a ring on it.
Still, no.

But, Beyonce, I just can not hold this against you.  Because with a person, when a man likes her, then he puts a ring on her (finger).  You are clearly wise beyond your years.  Because between your vow to not compromise your Christianity (Survivor), your crazy rhyming skills of the word "minute" with "minute" (top hit Irreplaceable), your intuition that JayZ and the rest of the world was not at all ready for that jelly (Bootylicious), and that you bought all of your clothes, watch, the house you live in, and car by yourself (Independent Women); you are my girl.

Monday, November 24, 2008

Mac Tip #5: Shortcut to Shutdown and Sleep

I know, shutting down your computer or putting it in sleep mode may not seem like a hard thing to do.  But check yourself.  I mean how often do you leave your computer running all day or all night simply because you forgot?  Didn't have time? Ran out the door too fast?

Already, if you have a mac, you are already being green with their environmentally friendly incentives , but making sure you remember to put your computer to sleep or shut it down is even better for the environment as well as your computer.

So, if you are leaving your computer for an extended amount of time, and are in a hurry, or just don't feel like using your mouse, simply follow these keyboard shortcuts:

To Sleep:

Option + Command+ Eject

{The Option button is right next to the Control button and says "Option". The Command Key is right next to that and has a picture of an apple on it, and the Eject button will be in your upper right corner}

To Shut Down:

Control+Option+Command+Eject   {Just add Control, which is labeled "ctrl"}

This makes me wish I had a shortcut in life to do the same thing.  

Wednesday, November 19, 2008

Idaho Travels

My husband and I are going to visit his home state full of potatoes: Idaho.

He actually hates that joke, but I still get a kick out of it.

Like most places you travel, if you look around at the people on the plane you can always tell (or at least guess) where they are coming from or where they live.  For example, if you are en route from Arizona to New York, and you see someone wearing a dreamcatcher necklace, chances are you've got a Zoni on your hands.

Or if you are going to Hawaii and someone is decked out in sunglasses and a hat and a fake lei, well then, you know they are not the native Hawaiian.

So today, I fully expect to see lots of these types of shirts:  

as well as these:  
and I bet we could guess who is the Idahoan and who isn't.  

Monday, November 17, 2008

My History Repeating Itself

When I was younger, I would draw the infamous "peace love and happiness" on everything.  It was like my slogan.  I don't even know if I understood what that meant.  I cringe when I think about that on my trapper keeper.

I literally drew that symbol everywhere. I think I may have even written "flower power" with the "o's" as flowers.  Oh, so very creative of me.

When I was in fourth grade, I took a yearbook picture in a tye-dye shirt with these beaded earrings and my sister told me I looked like Janis Joplin.

When I was a senior in high school I became really attached to tye-dye again, and wore it all the time.  So much, that when I entered college I had a few good friends that called me a hippie.

That was years ago.  I am totally passed it.  

Until now.  

Tonight I found myself googling peace sign necklaces and I envisioned myself wearing them in photos and walking out of my apartment complex holding up two in a very peaceful manner to whomever was passing by.

I think my history is repeating itself.  Although, without going into too much detail,  I think I might understand this whole peace thing a bit better this time around, at least I am trying.  

 Or maybe I am just a hippie.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Mac Tip #4: Zoom In

At some point, we all have trouble seeing and brining a magnifying glass every time you use your computer may be a bit odd. The print on some websites and the people in some pictures are just too small and you need a way to make it bigger.  Pulling the screen closer to you is not the best help, because after a while you will hit your nose to the screen.  So put away that magnifying glass, keep your head at a normal distance from the screen, and learn how to zoom in.
Find the "Control Key": 

(Yours will be far more streamlined than this, because this chunky one is from a PC.  It's located in the bottom left corner of your keyboard.)

Simply hold down this button while you move your fingers on your trackpad on your laptop (You know, it's where you control your mouse) in a upward motion.  You will see the screen get larger in front of you.   Once the words or picture is as big as you would like it, let go of the control key and use your fingers on the trackpad to move the screen around.  You will not be able to type or navigate when the screen is zoomed in,  you will only be able to look at what is on the screen.  To get the screen back to it's original size, hold down the control key again, and move your fingers in a downward motion.  If you have a desktop, do the same things as mentioned above, only use the scrolling feature on your mouse.  
Go on, give it a try:
isn't it so much better when you can see?

Friday, November 14, 2008

We Wasted the Good Surprise on You

Surprise parties present such problems for everyone involved.

 If you are the guest of honor, then the weeks leading up to the party, you think that no one cares about you.  This is because everyone who knows about the party is trying really hard to be really sneaky and therefore say nothing about anything pertaining to the event at hand.  Not even a hint that they know that something is going on.  So if it's a birthday, no one even acts like they remember it's coming.  If it's a congratulatory party, no one acts like they care.  You may as well have lost your job, or quit school. So you end up feeling that you are a loser who has no friends, and the ones you do have, hate you.

If you are the organizer, you are forced to think of who to invite.  This is so crucial because if you invite someone that you have no idea that the guest of honor has a secret loathing for, then you are screwed.  You shift quickly from "party-organizer-hero" to "party-ruiner."  If you invite the enemy, then you are better off not throwing a party at all.

When it's time for the "SURPRISE" everyone is always freaking out.  And with good reason, I mean no one was mean to their friend for no reason right?  But this moment is either overly prepared or completely under prepared.  If it's coordinated perfectly, then the guest of honor is receiving text messages or phone calls telling them where to go and when, that the organizer hopes to pull off as a spur of the moment plan, and the guest of honor will wonder why the heck the organizer is suddenly so freaking prompt and organized.  If it's not planned well, then the surprise is wasted.  The house is full and booming with loud tunes and doritos crunching and then right before the guest of honor gets there everything is quiet.  You have to balance a fine line between being organized and being aloof.  Which is really hard to do when you are trying to be yourself and make someone go somewhere right at an exact moment.  This is the most stressful part of the party.

Attached to the "SURPRISE" moment, is the mess of the picture takings.  For some reason, when people hide and are waiting, there is this temptation to crouch down.  No matter that there is most likely nothing to hide behind since everyone is in a living room, if people are crouching they feel like they are being really stealth.  So when the guest of honor opens that door and people scream the beloved "SURPRISE" all the cameras start flashing; but from down below.  This results in the guest of honor always having a double chin.  Eyes red, and stomach looking sort of pregnant.  They always demand that a fake "surprise picture" is taken, and it never fools anyone.

The People You'll Meet

At the Starbucks that I frequent, I usually run into this character.  He loves to communicate and so I know way too much about him:

1. He "loves all things Jesus"

2.  He is unemployed but is dying to find a job very fast.  But, he sees that for most jobs he wants, he needs  a Masters.  So when he found out that I was getting a Master's he said, "Oh where?  I need to pick one up."

3.  His career goals have evolved from accounting to health care to drug rehab.

4.  He no longer goes to this Starbucks anymore because the soft chairs started to hurt his back.  He goes to one now with "more tables."

5. After telling him all about my job, he has concluded that my line of work is a "professional reader."

Oh the people you'll meet.

Thursday, November 13, 2008

You Forgot Your Pen and Asked Me for Mine. I'm Mad at You Now

This is a great post from Stuff Christian like.

Ha ha.  I'm still laughing.

Read it, and then please confess here that me and that guy are not the only two people that do exactly this.

Class Act

We had macaroni and cheese with apple sauce on the side for dinner last night.

I ate it on my bed, with a tray, in my running clothes while watching Sienfeld.

All I could think about was how I would love some wine to go with it.

I'm such a class act.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

Sir, Can I Have Some More?

I picked up some Natural Mint Hot Coco from Trader Joes.  Cy said we could only get it if I actually drank it.  I think he is referring to, literally, the 30 boxes of tea that I have yet to consume.  But, I am proud to say that scoop by scoop I am drinking it down.  I even brought it with me babysitting last week, and when it was time to reach for a mug, I was delightfully surprised to find the same jar in their cabinets.  The grocery shopper of that household is one of the healthiest but still yummiest food eaters I know, so I knew I had scored big time.  But just in case I need to convince myself (and you) a bit more, check it out:

In terms of pesticide use, it is second only to cotton.  So that means, if you are wearing your organic shirt and you spill your hot coco down the front, then you are pesticide free. Or if you get organic coco, then none are used at all.  Yes, that means you don't even have to wear a shirt.  Wait, what?

Coco has almost twice the antioxidants of red wine, and almost three times as many as green tea.  But you can't pretend you are drunk, no one will buy it.

Mint will soothe your digestive track, and getting rid of stomach discomfort and any bacteria that you may have in there.  If this really is the case, I can't imagine that mint hot coco is the best option, but it might be enough for you to have more than one cup.

Facts from: Ideal Bite and A2Z of Health

Tuesday, November 11, 2008


I have been totally and completely M.I.A. lately.  I guess that is what happens when you work full time, go to grad school full time and try to live a life.  But I think I am back for a few days now, so that is good.  Here are a few things that you have missed hearing about:

1. My best friend Stephanie got engaged.
2. We tried to send out our thank you notes for our wedding gifts and found out we have about 5 gifts we have no idea where they came from.
3. We talked about "bodily fluids" in seminary class. Oh, Leviticus.
4. I was dying to go to Costco and got all hyped up when we ran out of time and we could not go. (yes, that is a highlight).
5. I threw away some hair dye coupons so they could not "tempt me". (That's a direct quote)
6. I realized I have a book due today and I have not finished it yet. Or started it.  Or even have it in my presence.

You are probably so sad that I have not blogged about these things.  Grab a tissue, it's ok.  I will be back on my A-game this week.

Friday, November 7, 2008

Wait, What?

We are in class on a break.

The woman sitting in front of me just got up and faced me like she was about to say something.  So I leaned forward.  She did too.

We were about 6 inches apart, leaning over the desk and she looked at me very intently and I am pretty sure she whispered: "Popcorn."

Then walked away. There is no popcorn anywhere in sight.


Friendship in Photos

"My friends are my estate."
-Emily Dickinson

"The bird a nest, the spider a web, a man friendship."
-William Blake
"What is a friend? A single soul in two bodies."
"The making of friends, who are real friends, 
is the best token we have of 
man's success in life."
-Edward Evertt Hale
"In a friend, you find a second self."-Isabelle Norton
"Ah, how good it feels.  The hand of an old friend."
-Mary Englebright
"Good communication is as stimulating
as black coffee, just as hard to 
sleep after." 
-Anne Morrow Lindbergh
"Friendship? Yes Please." -Charles Dickens
Photos provided by Stephanie Fay with Tunnel Photography .  She has a unique gift; the ability to capture the warmth behind the lens.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Starting: Seminary Moments

There are just too many precious gems that are said in my seminary classes to not blog about them.

Lets make it clear that I love my classes.  I learn tons, and most of that comes out here in posts that talk extensively about God and food, God and politics, and, well anything serious that I have to say.  So please, take those posts as all the gold stars that I think that my classes deserve.

This new section will just be a few golden nuggets that are hilarious, and that only could be said in seminary.

November 4, 2008

Barack Obama has just won the presidential election:

"You are a democrat too?"  - A sweet lady in my class asked me this.  She did not say it like "You are a democrat along with the others in this room?"  Or "You are democrat along with the other millions of Americans that voted for him?"

No, it was "You are [also] a democrat too?" as in, "I have only known you for a few weeks and I have a bunch of other grievances against you.  This one, has pushed you over the edge."

PhD Here I Come

I'm very ambitious.   I get really excited about people who are doing great things in life and I want to do the same. And I think that I really could do it if I tried.  But usually, I dont want to do that same thing, I just want to be that ambitious.  But the road to that final conclusion is always a bit bumpy.

I wanted to be Michael Phelps earlier this summer, so I swam 50 lengths in my apartment complex pool.  Once.

So yesterday, I was very emotional about Barack winning. I'm totally excited about it.  In fact, as you may have guessed, I have lots to say about it, but I have not had time to process it all yet, and I'm trying a new thing called "think before you speak". Or in this case, write.  So more on Barack later.

But anyway, yesterday I got really excited about Barack Obama and change and politics.

I get really excited about people who are doing great things in life and I want to do the same. And I think that I really could do it if I tried.  But usually, I dont want to do that same thing, I just want to be that ambitious.  But the road to that final conclusion is always a bit bumpy.  This is what happened last night at my house:

Cy: "Hey Bon.  What are you doing?"
Me: "Oh just looking at PhD Programs online."
Cy: "That's great!"
Me: "Yeah.  I think I might change my focus.  I'm going to get a PhD in Political Science."
Cy: "[smiling] Oh really?  I think that you can get whatever you want, but I dont think that you want to get a PhD in Political Science."
Me: "You are mean."
Twenty minutes later...
Me: "Thanks for saying that. I don't really want a whole PhD in Political Science.  I would rather just go to cnn.com"
I'm ridiculous.  Good thing I have people to keep me grounded

Wednesday, November 5, 2008

Thanksgiving? Are You Still There?

As I run around the beautiful city of Costa Mesa, where South Coast Plaza is the center of "culture", I am already surrounded by holiday decorations.  There are tinsel-coated giant stars on the light posts, larger than life Christmas ornaments that surround the mall entrances making you think you have blown   a warp whistle from Super Mario Brothers and landed in Big World.  And not to mention giant Santa Houses that take over the middle of the mall.  At first, I find myself oohing and ahhing over the Christmas Spirit, and wanting to put in my favorite Christmas album: Hanson's Snowed In.

But then, I pause, because I realize that it's only November 4th.  We skip from July 4th, to a small celebration of candy during Halloween and then we go straight to Christmas.  Thanksgiving, one the BEST and the oldest holidays in our country is getting the shaft.  For a people that claim to be sooo American, we sure do drop the turkey and mashed potatoes out the window.  I am here to say that:


The food, the family, the giving of thanks.  It's wonderful.  I mean I'm not advocating that we put up large turkey heads at the mall, but don't you think that we could wait just a bit on the holiday decor?  Just to honor Thanksgiving?

We will be going to Catalina Island for the fourth year in a row this year, and I am so excited.  Good friends of ours live there, and I can not wait to visit again.  I made these photos old school so that we could instill some thanks for those that actually grew the corn and killed the turkey:

Melissa Tomeoni , from Soul Mates Photo gave me this great idea.  Check her out, and click here if you want to make your photos full of the olden times.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Voting Incentives

I voted today.

Then I went to my favorite addiction, even though I only get decaf, and got a free tall coffee.  Yes, all Starbucks are participating, so you can go and get one too!

However, I was a bit startled to find that the "Way I See It" quote on my free-voting cup was as follows:

"Politics is about getting outside of yourself and your own problems for a little while and fully immersing yourself in the lies and the deceit of others. "  -Stephen Elliott

Hmm.  Coincidence?

Let's hope. Otherwise, they will have some sort of uproar at some of our favorite caffeine locations.

 If not, then we have far bigger problems:  our stay awake potion that we put in our veins is anti-government.  Crap.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

The Wrath of God and the Coming Election

I'm sorry, but I have to.  I'm warning you now:  stop reading if you do not want to read about politics, Christians, the Bible, or my opinion on it.  Don't complain later, I warned you.

Romans 13:1-7 says this:

" 1Everyone must submit himself to the governing authorities, for there is no authority except that which God has established. The authorities that exist have been established by God.2Consequently, he who rebels against the authority is rebelling against what God has instituted, and those who do so will bring judgment on themselves. 3For rulers hold no terror for those who do right, but for those who do wrong. Do you want to be free from fear of the one in authority? Then do what is right and he will commend you. 4For he is God's servant to do you good. But if you do wrong, be afraid, for he does not bear the sword for nothing. He is God's servant, an agent of wrath to bring punishment on the wrongdoer. 5Therefore, it is necessary to submit to the authorities, not only because of possible punishment but also because of conscience. 6This is also why you pay taxes, for the authorities are God's servants, who give their full time to governing. 7Give everyone what you owe him: If you owe taxes, pay taxes; if revenue, then revenue; if respect, then respect; if honor, then honor."

I have been pondering these verses over and over again in my head and heart and through prayer because they are difficult for me to accept. First,  I think it's easy for all of us to live in fear of a government, an earthquake, a disease-anything that has the ability to have power over us.  But, like this verse talks about, it is God who has appointed the government.  But wait.  What about corrupt leaders and rulers that have treated their people poorly or have failed us in the faith they professed to have?  Did God really appoint them too?  We are reminded of the Exodus and of Pharaoh's rule.  Scripture tells us that God "hardened Pharaoh's heart", thus controlling Pharaoh and the situation even though Pharaoh was not a follower of Yahweh.  It was a horrible time for God's people, and the fact  that God allowed Pharoah to be in control, and His people to suffer tells us something about God.  Our idea of comfort, or in this case, the Israelite's is vastly different from God's.  It does not always look the same, but it does not mean that God has left the scene.

What we do see is that God used that situation to bring destruction against the myth of those days (some of the ten plagues is a a metaphor against the gods and goddesses of that day; resulting in an establishment of power and sovereignty of Yahweh over any other gods of Egypt), brought people out of Egypt and into the promised land, setting up the precursor to the story of our Christian faith:  we are in slavery, and are in the Exodus.  We need a Savior to rescue us and we are on this earth, rescued, but headed towards the promised land.  So it is here that we find comfort and the truth of this Romans' passage speaks loudly:  Our kingdom is not set up by the authorities of this world.  We are called to abide by it because it's a part of order that God has set up on this earth. Why?  Because He has appointed the leaders, and whether they know it or not, we see it or not, we have to have faith that God is using it for what He sees fit.

This last part is especially hard to swallow, because sometimes what we see is fitting, is hardly what God sees as necessary to His plan.  We know that the Israelites hated their time in slavery, and in the wilderness.  In fact, they even doubted God after He had rescued them!  But God knew that the event of the Exodus would speak louder than the mis-understood cries of His people.  This is why it is repeated in Scripture when God is declaring His name "It is I who brought you out of Egypt." This Exodus became a part of God's name, Rescuer and Redeemer.

So what happens when the president that is appointed is one that we do not agree with?  What if we feel oppressed by a tax plan, a health care incentive, abortion rights to name a few?  Does this change our view of God because He appointed it?  No.  In fact, it should change the view we have of ourselves and of our country.  God's plan and purpose is to redeem all things.  Revelation talks about the new heaven and the new earth, a restoration of all things He has created.  So whatever the tax plan, whatever the foreign policy, God's agenda is to restore a world that He created, and we don't have a better idea of how to do it because we did not create it.  

I agree that we should be in deep prayer, but our prayers should be focused on a deep faith in God and in His plans for our lives, this earth, and His return.  No matter how bad it gets, or how scary it can become, we ultimately do not answer to this world, nor will we stay here forever, and it's empires, including the ones that we belong to will one day cease to exist.  That is something that we can praise God for, and pray for ourselves and others-that we would have the strength to stand, no matter what the situation, in the peace that God is in control over everything.

This does not mean, however, that we should not vote, nor does it mean that we should vote for whomever is "cool" or "compelling" or the "norm".   It is hard for all of us to stop judging other Christians for the choice they are making when they vote.  We are all flawed in our thinking, every one of us, and the best we can do is read the Word, and vote not with our interest in mind, but how we truly feel that God would be honored the best.    We must pray for discernment of these things, but these answers are also found in Scripture: caring for the poor, widow and oppressed, truth, honesty, the fruits of the spirit, the ten commandments, the beattitudes....the list goes on.  But we face trouble when we realize that not one candidate fits all of these.  So we feel the need to play warrior and we often give voice to slander or ridicule, and we put our faith in one person and we end up hating the other.  This is no better than loving both and making no choice.  Because it shows us our abilities to have faith in man rather than God.

The same thing happens when we make our decisions based on fear.  Its so easy to get afraid of someone and so then we vote the other way. When we do this, we are putting our trust in the safer candidate.  We must ask ourselves, "Is either one safe? "Or are both in danger of falling?"  If we take a close look at the world around us, and Scripture we are aware that ever since the fall, the world is getting worse.  It's not getting better. Sure we may have advances in technology or medicine, but the world according to God's purposes are not getting any better.  So our trust can not be in one candidate, as we are tempted to claim that one person will destroy a good world.  Our world is full of good things, but it's already in process of being destroyed.  It's part of the plan.  Both candidates will play a role in God's plan.  To vote because we are afraid of the terrorist attacks that may happen if we vote one way, or the poverty if we vote another, for example, we are saying that the other candidate has the power to save the world.  Unfortunately, I think we have to realize that neither have this ability.  Sure, they may make things a bit better, but better according to whom?  Better according to God's purproses to restore things in His timing, in His way, and only He knows that path.  Afraid that this really is the end of the world?  Then let's get this ball rolling.  Why are you so afraid? Finally, it all can end.  If it is, then our vote is not going to stop it.  Cause it's not ours to stop.  We did not create this earth, nor will we decide when it ends.  The One who began it is the only One who has a say over life and death.

 We are a Church that sees the upcoming election as a time of doom and dark ages that the wrath of God will come upon us.  For aborting babies, for homosexual marriage, for not taking care of the poor, for stealing people's money, for being in a war.  We think that this decision, this term, will bring wrath on His people.  First of all, we are hardly a Christian nation.  So let's stop that thinking now.  The United States of America has not been appointed by God as His elect, and to act like that is to play God, and place politics with Religion in the same Bible, resulting in theology that is at best questionable.  Secondly, we need to wake up and notice that this world is passing away. Abortions and everything else that we have labeled Christian issues and decisions and have thus cast our vote based on a few key words, is our sign that that is our wrath.  We have been given over to the desires of our hearts, to be a world that has allowed this to take place.  To exchange the worship of God for a lie.  (Romans 1:24)  This already is His wrath.

In addition, it has the danger of labeling people as "Good Christians" and "Bad Christians", and drawing thick black and white lines of what makes someone responsible or  irresponsible.  We must have grace for one another in our decision making, enough so that we can hear people out and we can discuss and pray together. How awful if we as the Body get to the point that we can not pray for whomever is appointed?

Man, woman, republican, democrat, barack or mccain need our prayers.  Just like I need them and just like the homeless guy on the corner does. Because in Christ, we are all on the same playing field.  We all are in need of Savior.  So my hope is that we realize that we are called to act responsibly and through the Word, praying and discerning what would God want, even if that we means we have to potentially give up what we want.  My hope is also that we all learn that our prayers need to not end in the out cry for the right person to be in office, but that no matter who is appointed, we realize  God's sovereignty.  And finally, my hope is that we do not judge one another, causing division between Christians because of who we vote for, that we would realize that we have the blood of Christ bonding us together that is stronger than any checked box on a ballot.

It had to be said. Where is our faith?  

If you can help it, realize that John Piper has his own opinions, and there is no need to get worked up and miss the point. The message of this is worth watching.

AND if you have not gotten enough of my rant, then please click here for my personal voting preferences.  Small Government. Big Constitution.  

Tuesday, October 28, 2008

No Treats For Me!

My husband and I are trying to be healthy.  Yes, it's true, we already eat organic everything, almost everything homemade, whole grain, and I exercise 4 days a week.  But we have a huge weakness: TREATS!  My gosh, even now as I typed that, my mouth started watering, like mad.  We LOVE to eat treats.  In fact, we will eat a very light dinner so that we can have more ice cream later.  I'm so not kidding.

So this week, my husband has decided, in a secret pact with himself, to not eat treats.  I know this because each time I ask him if he wants one, I am really telling him in code that I want one but I wont have one unless he has one. He is fully aware of this, because when we don't want treats at the same time, we get so frustrated and guilt one another into having a scoop of ice cream, or four. But he just keeps saying no.  Which means I keep saying no.  

Another something I must bring up is that carbs make me sleepy.  I have no idea why, but I can't eat carbs for breakfast or during the day because about 20 minutes after I am in a coma and I have to inject caffeine into my veins or I will find myself in my bed.  So, I have been eating lots of fruits and proteins.  Now because I claim to be very healthy, and really I am besides the treats, I know that according to avid dieters, proteins are good for you, and carbs are not.  And because my metabolism is crazy fast, then I insist to myself in my head that I need treats to make up for the lack of carbs that are going to my hips.  Besides, doesn't ice cream and chocolate look so much prettier under my jeans than a loaf of bread?  
So I am really trying to only eat treats three times a week.  I already had one, the day that I made the pact, so I only have two more and this week is a big week: Halloween.  So tonight, I asked my husband if he wanted a treat, and because he is in a health conspiracy against my treat longings a great encourager of my goals, he said no.  So, I grabbed a glass of water and pretended that it was no big deal.

But do you know what?  It WAS a big deal!  I want a treat!  I just bought mint hot cocoa from Trader Joes and it's taunting me.  No matter that I am causing the temptation because I did not put it in the cupboard, I placed it right by the hot water boiler.  So I sat there and watched it, and today I thought of smelling it.  No. Can't.  I have decided that Thursday will be the day to break it out.  Why Thursday when Halloween is Friday, you ask?  Well, I babysit on Thursdays and if you frequented their couch, you would call it a treat couch too.  There is just something about how you sink in, and can watch TV without being at the gym, that just SCREAMS treats!  And then, of course, I know I'm at a breaking point, especially after tonight's stunt so I will not be able to have a treat and then not have it again the next day.  Better to get them both out at once.

I feel better now, and I also feel better that today at lunch, I stuffed two JUMBO marshmallows in my mouth while I was waiting for my tea to heat up.  I'm not counting it as a treat though cause they had sand on them from the bonfire.