Friday, January 30, 2009

Things That Make You Go, HMMMMM!

Some of you have probably heard that PETA has launched a campaign against the hunting and killing of Sea Kittens (better known as fish). They are trying to change the publics opinion of fish to reflect how we feel about animals such as dogs and cats.

Anyway, blah blah blah. I'm not writing to say this is right or wrong. I just wanted to point out the advertising banner at the top of the web page!!

Someone at PETA needs to check with their advertising department!! LOL

Thursday, January 29, 2009

Heathcliff – He’s Everywhere!!

Have you ever read, heard or seen something and for the next few weeks whatever it was you read, heard or saw seemed to be everywhere?  It’s been happening to me for the past month.

Back a couple of months ago  Good Friends Book Club chose their reading list for 2009 and one of the books we’ll be reading is Emily Bronte’s Wuthering Heights.  I have to be honest with you, I was not overjoyed when I found out.  I have avoided that book like the plague.  I like happy endings, not torment and obsessive love and hate.  It’s just not my shtick.  I’m a Jane Austen girl and in my mind for years Emily Bronte was her antithesis.

Anyway, just after finding out we were reading WH for book club I came across PBS’s new lineup for their Masterpiece Classics series and what book do you suppose they were adapting and showing in January?  That’s right, Wuthering Heights!

I told myself then that I would go ahead and read the book and then watch the movie afterwards.  I set it to record on my DVR, but I couldn’t bring myself to crack open the book.  Weeks went by and the air date got closer and closer, but still I had not started to read.  I got to the point that I had talked myself out of reading the book or watching the movie, but last Sunday I was looking for something good to watch on TV and decided to give WH a try.  Why not?  I wasn’t going to read the book and by watching the movie I might be able to keep up a bit with the discussion at book club.

I loved it and I’ve been inspired to read the book.  I started Monday and I can hardly put it down.

Ok, so the first place I encountered WH was on PBS (watch online here).  I also have it on my DVR if you want to come over and watch.

The second place has been the blogosphere.  All of my Jane Austen/Regency/costume drama blogs I follow have been awash in reviews.  Some liked it, most tolerated it.  Here’s a few for your enjoyment.

The third place I found it was again in a blog, but not in the form of a review.  Someone had posted a Youtube video from the original WH and used The Puppini Sisters cover of Kate Bush’s Wuthering Heights.  Up until that moment I had never heard of The Puppini Sisters or Kate Bush or a song called Wuthering Heights.  Boy was I in for a treat!

Thanks in part to all these WH sightings, I’m halfway through the book and I’m actually enjoying it.  I don’t recommend watching a movie before reading the book, but in this instance it helped move me to pull the book off it’s shelf and crack it open.  This book is meaty and I can’t wait for our discussion!

Ten Years Ago Today

It was ten years ago today I returned home from my mission.  The photo below was taken just outside the front doors to the Salt Lake Temple the Monday before I left.  Sister Tipton and I were the only two going home that month.  On one hand it feels like a lifetime ago and on the other as though I just stepped off the plane.  I will definitely serve another mission in my old age.  Probably not proselyting, but a mission of some sort nonetheless.  A service mission sounds cool or maybe genealogy.  Anyway, that’s a few years off.

You can make fun of the perm if you want. 

scan0006scan0002 Threw this one in so you could see the mood swings my hair went through!!

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

What Kind of Reader Are You?
Your Result: Literate Good Citizen

You read to inform or entertain yourself, but you're not nerdy about it. You've read most major classics (in school) and you have a favorite genre or two.

Dedicated Reader
Obsessive-Compulsive Bookworm
Book Snob
Fad Reader
What Kind of Reader Are You?
Quiz Created on GoToQuiz

Found this on Jane Austen Today. Nice to know I'm an OCB and a Book Snob!

If you love Austen and other writers from the Regency and Victorian eras, you'll probably like Vic and Laurel Ann's Jane Austen Today ("This blog explores Jane Austen as we see her today in movies, print, sequels, web sites, and other modern day media"). Vic has another blog called Jane Austen's World that you may also find excessively diverting.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

Third Times a Charm

I had my yearly review this morning and lets just say I was seriously surprised. For the third year in a row I've received the highest marks one can get on their review. We're "graded" on a scale of 1 -4 with 2 being the standard "way to go, you did good this year" mark. One is for individuals who worked above and beyond the normal scope of their job description. I felt that I had done a great job this year, but having gotten a one for the past two years I was certain I wouldn't get it again this year. In this instance, I'm happy to admit I was wrong.

I'm feeling pretty stinkin' awesome!!

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Seriously Random

A blog I follow did a review today on a book called A Broken Vessel by Kate Ross.  Her review made it sound awesome, but I wanted a few other opinions so I went out to B&N and read the reader reviews.

All the reviews were positive, so I started checking out the author’s other books and the reviews they received.  Below is the synopsis page of the fourth and final book with one reader review.

Look at the date!  Who in their right mind writes a nice fluffy reader review on that day???  Maybe they posted the review at 7am before turning on the TV?


Wednesday, January 14, 2009

Donuts for Depression

I highly recommend a half dozen Shipley’s donuts when feeling a bit down. They don’t do much except add a few more dimples to your butt, but they taste great nonetheless and the time it takes to eat them takes your mind off of things.

I’m definitely not looking forward to the sugar crash later. Anyone have an extra Prozac I can take?

Brownies work well, too.

Saturday, January 10, 2009

A Kinder Aunt Dallas

For the past several months I have been pondering my life and how I live it and a couple of things have come to mind that I want to work on. Since it is now the new year, I'll call them resolutions.

Be Kind - Be kind didn't make it on President Hinckley's "Be" list, but I think it would fit in nicely; especially in my life. I don't necessarily think I'm an unkind person in general, but I'm definitely not the nicest person sometimes.

  • I think unkind thoughts of people who I feel don't drive as well as they should. I've glared at them as they drove by, thrown my arms in the air knowing they can see me in their rear view mirror, given the single finger salute on a couple of occasions, yelled out loud, cut folks off and purposefully kept someone from getting in front of me in my lane. I have become the driver I rail against while driving.
  • I like rules and boundaries. They help me understand my role in whatever it is I'm doing. At work I know the rules (processes/procedures) but, when someone works outside of those rules I can get upset. I really need to lighten up and realize for every rule, there is sometimes a very good reason why someone is going around it and to work with them, not against.  I have a horrible habit of ignoring phone calls from customers who I know are going out of process. 
  • I get too emotional about things. Not weepy emotional, but ticked off emotional, adrenaline emotional. I'm one of the easiest people to get riled up about something. Couple of examples: Religion - best way to get chucked off my Christmas card list is to tell me I'm going to hell because I'm a Mormon. Had this happen to me a couple of years ago at work and after a few minutes of her mouthing off to me, I told her I'd sick HR on her if she didn't shut her pie hole! That was very Christian of me!  Don't patronize me - I know I'm too emotional and when I get that way, there's nothing worse than being laughed at about it and told to calm down. Telling me to calm down brings out my sharp stick tendencies.  If I happen to get this way around you, just let me talk it out and know that  I’m not mad at you.  I’ve just allowed circumstances to work me up.  This particular fault is the biggest reason I’m working on being kinder.  Without working on this, the rest of what I want to do can’t be accomplished.

There are more items I could list under Be Kind that I should work on, but I don't want to overwhelm myself with too much change!

A desire to become a better person has been the driving force behind my musings. Several times a year I'll read an article in the Ensign about a sister who the whole ward loves. She's the aunt or the grandma of the ward. Well, since I'm not old enough to be the grandma, I think I'd like to be the aunt.

Let me explain. A large reason for pondering my life lately is that sometimes I'm not happy with how life has turned out for me. I know I should be grateful "for all my many blessings", but most of the time I'm not. I'm a paradox even to myself. I play an inner game of tug-of-war between the life that I have and the life that I want, but  I'm a realist, I accept my world as it literally is and deal with it accordingly.  Most of the time that works for me, but then my emotional monster rears it’s ugly head.

So this is how I want to deal with it. If I'm going to be The Westlake Ward Spinster (you can call me TWWS for short!!), I want to be the best one I can. I am poking fun at myself by saying this, but it's how I feel. Not just the spinster part, but my whole life in general. I want to be a better person. I want to be happy with who I am RIGHT NOW and not waste time on what I wish I had.

I want to let my light shine and in doing so, glorify my Heavenly Father. Guess it really boils down to my desire to be more like Heavenly Father and Jesus Christ.

I doubt I'll have fully achieved all this by the end of the year, but if I'm even a bit kinder today than I was yesterday, I will have achieved my goal and will be on my way to being a better person.

Ensign article that touched me deeply.

You Know Enough by Elder Neil L. Anderson (Oct ‘08 General Conference)

Every One Gets A Bailout

This was just too cute, so I thought I'd share. The blog post is from my friends Jason and Shelly.

Monday, January 5, 2009

What Would They Think?

Ever wondered how the person being written about in a biography feels about it?
How would I feel about someone riffling through every personal detail of my life and then publishing it for all the world to read?
My letters, emails, text messages, financials, homes, friends, religion; all used to convey the type of person I was.
What compels a person to write a biography?
What compels someone (like me) to read a biography?
If the person written about could look down from heaven, how would they feel about me reading their personal information, private letters?
Do some of them wish they could have chosen their biographer instead of being relegated to the pages of history by an inept researcher?
Yes, I'm reading a biography right now and I'm loving it.
Georgiana: Duchess of Devonshire
Biographies aren't my favorite, but I've read several before and each time I feel as though I'm snooping and should hide the book as if it were a copy of National Enquirer.
It feels intrusive to know so much about someone I've never met.
With a tinge of guilt I'll confess to being enthralled by this woman who was born 216 years before me.
But with all of that said, I'm going to press the Publish Post button and get back to reading!

Sunday, January 4, 2009

Mom and Me

There's no real reason why I uploaded this photo except that it's a good picture of me and my mom. I was probably a teenager the last time I was in a photo with her. The grave marker is of my great-great grandfather and gg grandmother. My mom loves to do genealogy and a few months back found some long lost relatives that only live about 2 hours north of her. She contacted them and we went for a visit back in November. It's all very confusing. The people we visited were half uncles/aunts/cousins. My great grandfather (son of gg grandpa Bjorge) married three times. My mother's line comes through the second wife. The relatives we visited come down through the third wife. There are no living descendants from the first wife. The third wife is still living (98 years old), but has alzheimer's and we didn't have a chance to meet her.

Alaska Update

Many of you have asked me what's going on with the Alaska trip. Did I get chosen? When will I know? Well, here's the skinny. The trip is off indefinitely. Every one's department is feeling the pinch of this bad economy and it's being reflected in budgets. I think IT feels it the most because we're overhead; we don't generate money, we spend it. Granted, it's all for the good of the company, but when it comes to budget cuts, IT takes a wallop.

Anyway, because of budget cuts the IT group in Alaska can't afford to pay the salary, travel and expenses of the person they would be bringing up. I offered to stay in Alaska for the three months, without coming home, if they would provide a place to stay. I also said I would pay my own expenses on my two weeks off. Normally, when traveling like that, food and entertainment would be expensed back to the company.

Now that the holidays are over, I plan to speak with my supervisor again and remind him of what I'd be willing to do. Maybe they'll go for it, maybe not. Guess it'll all depend on how badly they need someone.

I'll let you know how it goes.