Monday, November 24, 2008

The Daring Young Man

This daring young man washed my office windows last Friday.

I'll brave -24f temps and polar bears, but don't ask me to dangle off the side of a building with little more than a couple of ropes and a two foot long piece of wood to sit on!

Like my red hard hat, clip board and flashlight? Last week I volunteered to be a Fire Warden on my floor at work. I'm now certified to get you out of my burning office building! Should you ever come by for a visit. :)

Friday, November 21, 2008

North to Alaska

This past week I was presented with an opportunity. The IT group for ConocoPhillips in Alaska is going to be short one person during the first quarter of 2009 and are asking if anyone would like to volunteer to fill in while the budget gets approved for them to hire someone.

I jumped on it and I really hope they choose to send me. I know of two others who volunteered, but that's just in Houston. I'm not sure if anyone in any of our other offices in the states have volunteered. I spoke to my supervisor today about it, asking all kinds of questions and generally making it known that I WANT IT!

Here's part of what I'm getting into.
  • Home office for ConocoPhillips Alaska is in Anchorage, but I'd be working in Kuparuk (The North Slope). As you can kinda see on the map above, Kuparuk is on the very edge of nowhere! The only way to get there is by plane. There are no roads, even when there's not 10ft of snow on the ground.
  • I'll be there from Jan-Mar. The 3 coldest and darkest months. Average minimum temp is -25f (without windchill factored in). See chart below.
  • Most of the time I'm there, I won't see daylight (24 hour darkness).
  • I have to take an 8 hour cold weather survival course in Anchorage before they fly me to Kuparuk and they'll issue me cold weather gear. The vast amount of my work will be done inside, but there will be times that I have to make my way to other buildings not attached to mine.
  • I'd work two weeks on two weeks off with 12 hour days.
  • During my two weeks off they'll fly me home, but I'm hoping they'll at least let me spend one of those two weeks off in Anchorage. That would be awesome!!

Now if they'll just pick me!!! I want this so bad I can taste it!
If you were unsure of my sanity up to this point, you now know for sure that I'm absolutely crazy! HA!

Wednesday, November 19, 2008


Why is it that not all toilets are the same height? Can't there be some sort of OSHA standard that states toilets must be such and such height so that unsuspecting users don't think their falling into the toilet abyss when they unsuspectingly come across a shorter than normal toilet?

Just today I was working on a different floor than where my normal toi-let is located and found that a quick pit stop was required. No problem! The bathrooms on each floor of my building are uniformly located just to the left of the elevators. In my brain I figured that since someone had the bright idea to put the bathrooms in the same spot on each floor, they must have had another bright idea and used the same model toilet in each one.



The toilets on the 14th floor (where I was working) are shorter than the toilets on the 11th floor (where my home toilet is). It is not a good feeling when you're in mid-squat position with pants around your knees and the toilet isn't where it's suppose to be! Several muscles clinch and arms fling out for steadying support.

Yes, I did squeek out a muted but high pitched, HOLY CRAP!

Appropriate, don't you think?

Sadly, this is not the first time this has happened to me.

December 27, 2000 - Shannon Ireland Airport: Local time was 11am, but my bio clock was still on 4am Houston time. It was my very first trans-atlantic flight, the complete trip took around 16 hours and I was JET LAGGED!! I was so shaky and exhausted from the jet lag and then it took an hour to get through customs and baggage claim. And then mixed in with all this is an absolute adrenaline rush of getting to see my best friend again. ShakyJetLagExhaustion + Adrenaline = Body and Mind not in top form. And on top of all that, I had to pee like a bear in June!

At that moment I was an unsuspecting tourist. I had read my Fodor's Travel Guide, I knew pretty much what to expect in this country, but nothing prepared me for what happened next.

I niavely walked into that bathroom with nothing more on my mind than to empty my bladder as fast as I could. It was one of those situations where you gotta pee so bad you can't hardly get your pants down without having an accident. So here I am, lots of luggage, small stall, gotta pee really bad, trying to get pants down, start the squat and CONFOUND IT, the toilet has got to be a good 3 inches shorter than it's American counterpart!! Muscles clinch, arms flail! To this day, I'm not sure how I managed to walk out of that stall without having to change everything from the waist down.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

Tuesday Tag - Bookworm Meme

This mornings tag is brought to you by, book:thirty (thanks Stacey).

Here are the rules:Open the closest book to you—not your favorite or most intellectual book, but the book closest to you at the moment. Turn to page 56 and write out the fifth sentence as well as the next two to five sentences. Pass this on to five blogging friends.

My “closest” book is Our Mutual Friend by Charles Dickens. I say “closest” because I’m at work and a few days ago I downloaded .pdf version from Google Books so I could read during my breaks.

Our Mutual Friend – Charles Dickens

Much impressed by this family circumstance, and also by the friendly disposition of Mr. Wegg, as exemplified in his so soon dropping into poetry, Mr. Boffin again shook hands with that ligneous sharper, and besought him to name his hour. Mr. Wegg named eight.

“Where I live,” said Mr. Boffin, “is called The Bower. Boffin’s Bower is the name Mrs. Boffin christened it when we came into it as a property. If you should meet with anybody that don’t know it by that name (which hardly anybody does), when you’ve got nigh upon about a odd mile, or say and a quarter if you like, up Maiden Lane, Battle Bridge, ask for Harmony Jail, and you’ll be put right.”

I’m about a third of the way through this book and I am loving it! I’ve always loved the stage and screen adaptations of Dickens’ works, but I was always a bit intimiated by him when it came to reading.

I tag:
A Student for Life
The Adelman Family Adventures
The cORRner
The Hunt Family

Friday, November 14, 2008


I was tagged by my friend Kathie (Thanks Dr. Ball!!).

5 Joys
1. Family and friends
2. The temple
3. Reading
4. My religion
5. Sleep

5 Fears
1. Failure
2. Being alone
3. Wearing out my welcome
4. Needles
5. Abandonment

5 Obsessions – I don’t think I obsess over things, but here are 5 things I like to do a lot.
1. Landscape photography
2. Cross Stitch
3. Traveling
4. Reading
5. Doing as little as possible!! :)

5 Surprising Facts
1. I was in the Navy for 5 years (many of you know this, but maybe not all)
2. I’ve broken more bones and had more stitches than both my brothers combined
3. I absolutely love Spam (canned meat, not junk email)
4. I would love to live overseas (Ireland, England, Italy)
5. I wish I had more patience

Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Happy Veteran's Day

This is my favorite pic of me while I was in the Navy. I was in my grungiest uniform that day, but it didn't matter! I pulled duty the first night we were in port and I was about to have 4 days of shore leave in The Bahamas!! One of my friends had already been ashore that day and bought the hat that I was modeling.
To all the men and women who have served, are serving or are about to serve our great nation:

Monday, November 10, 2008

Casual Monday

My Sunday evening routine isn't what the majority of the LDS community would consider appropriate Sabbath day activity. More often than not, I wash about two loads of cloths - whites and darks. I, personally, don't consider laundry a chore. In my no child or husband world, laundry is a non-chore. It's almost as if I'm really not doing anything. The washer and dryer do all the work, I just show up after 30 minutes or so to throw the first load into the dryer and start a new one.

Anyway, yesterday around 6pm (prime laundry time) I got a call from my friend Jenna and we spoke for 2 1/2 hours. I was so excited that she called and getting to talk to her for so long was HEAVEN!!

Well, needless to say, when we finally did hang up at 8:30pm my brain was not thinking about laundry and whether or not I had any "work" cloths for Monday. All I thought about was doing a quick blog post and then winding down for the night.


Yeah, I'm at work in jeans and the blouse I wore to church yesterday!

Sunday, November 9, 2008

My Friend Jenna

Once upon a time, in a land far far away (Utah), there lived a girl named Jenna. She was the nicest, most kindest person in the land and everyone wanted to be her friend; even the meanies (my trainer - hehehe!).

Seriously, there's something about her that draws people in and I was no exception.

We met while serving in the same mission. I had only been on my mission 6 weeks and I was having a rough time. My trainer, for reasons beyond my comprehension, didn't want to train me and just flat out told me so. I also felt like she didn't like me all that much, but to her credit, she never came out and said that.

Anyway, by some means or other, the Mission President got wind of this and decided to transfer me to a different area and different companion.


When I found out Jenna was my new companion, instantly my stress and fear melted away. The very next day I was packed and on my way to meet her.

There are no words that would convey to you how much I love this woman. She gave me friendship when my little heart needed it the most; she loved me for who I was; she laughed at my funny haha's and let me

We spoke on the phone tonight after being out of touch the past 10 years. She's married, awesome husband, several kids. It was such a joy to hear her voice and feel her love again.

They say there are humans on this earth masquerading as angels.

Jenna, thank you for being mine when I needed one the most.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Can It Be Tomorrow Already?

I'm so tired of hearing about this candidate doing this or that candidate doing that.

The Democrats caused this or the Republicans caused that (cuz you know EVERYTHING is GW's fault, right?).

For good or maybe not so good, we find out who our new President is tomorrow and I'm feeling a mix of excitment and dread. Neither one of the candidates is who I voted for in the primaries. Both have ideas or agendas I do not agree with.

Anyway, I'm biting my nails and trying hard not to just sit on the internet trying to find early polling data! :)

Here's some early data for you. The town of Dixville Notch, NH has 100% of it's voting done and counted. Here are the results.

Obama 7
Edwards 2
Richardson 1

McCain 4
Romney 2
Giuliani 1

Just my observation: I find it interesting that yes, Obama got the most individual votes, but that 10 of the 17 people didn't vote for him.

Must let go of mouse and push away from the desk! :)

I'll probably have to take a sleep aid tonight so I can at least get a couple of hours. LOL