Friday, May 14, 2010

Thursday, April 29, 2010

Check it Out!

I haven't made it a secret that I am a writer. An unpublished one--but an author just the same. I've started up a new blog solely for the love of writing. I will still keep this blog--for family and friends who want to know how adorable my children are and that we ate at Pirate Island over the weekend. But to know the secret ponderings of my soul (ie. things I want to complain about, rejoice in, and basically give a shout out to) you'll have to check out my other blog.

spinmewriteround.blogspot.com

I'm going to be having a contest in the next couple of weeks--so be watching and be ready to tell all your friends about it.

Happy Blogging!

Sunday, February 28, 2010

'UP' date

Here I am, back in the blogosphere, and sighing that I can't write about what I want to. My intention was to give everyone the 'down-low' on what's going on. However, with our country looking like its going to the crap-hole and everyone down-in-the-proverbial-dumps, I've decided to be a bit more upbeat...SO--dun dun dun, instead of the 'DOWN'-low, you are getting the 'UP'date.

All you want to know about Me!
1)First of all, I have been writing a book for the last year. It is the reason my blog has been so dismally employed of late. (Don't worry, that isn't the way I write in a book. :-) HOWEVER--I finally finished it...all of it. At least as much as I'm going to do until someone decides it is fabulous and pays me to publish it. I'm extremely proud of myself and never would have finished without some truly awesome people I call my "Writer's Group". I will definitely blog again when I actually acquire an agent and when it actually gets published, which it will, because it is an awesome story (cut me some slack--I'm trying to think positive thoughts and increase the positive energy around me.) These are some of my writing buds. You can tell that all we do is work,work,work...

2)Second of all, I have become a runner. Yes me, lover of greasy food, pastries, and lounging on the sofa. I actually just ran a 10K in my fastest time ever, one hour and fourteen minutes. I know that seems like it's slow. Frankly, it is. BUT--I did it! And today I can actually walk like a normal person, sort of. At least I can fake it until I'm all alone and can start limping again. It is also the farthest I've ever ran, (6.2miles) and it totally sucked! But I did it, and afterwards it didn't seem so suck-ish anymore, it felt good. My goal is to run a half-marathon this year. (Still can't bring myself to even want to consider a marathon.
3)And Third of all, I have had a new job this year being an Instructional Coach. Sounds sophisticated, but it really isn't. I'm at a turning point, because next year I could continue doing this or go back into the classroom. It's a toss up. I will be happy either way. I wouldn't mind hanging with my peeps (teacher friends) and my peepettes (students) again, but I also wouldn't mind never having to write a sub plan again. SO--yes, it's a conundrum. I'll let you know what happens.

All you wish you knew about TyGuy:
1)Ty is a kick-butt runner. Last year, he made it to the finals in the 100 meter run for the Hershey Track Meet in our region. Now he's set his sights higher. He ran the 10K I mentioned earlier in 52 minutes, basically making his mom look like a turtle on downers. After he finished, he cheered me on as I crossed the finish line. Not wanting to look like a lazy, I decided to sprint the rest of the way in true runner fashion. He came over to congratulate me and I said, "Did you see me sprint that last bit?". To which he answered, "That was sprinting? Oh, Okay. It didn't look like sprinting to me, but maybe it was for you. Good job, Mom." Wasn't he so nice as he crushed my hopes and dreams?
2)Basketball is one of Tyler's favorite sports to play. We lucked out this year, and Ty got a most excellent coach in little league basketball. This guy was amazing and taught Ty a ton of basketball-ish stuff. His team only lost one game the entire season, and they only lost that by 2 points. It was great kicking some butt for once, instead of walking away from every game saying "I know you lost by twenty points, but look how good you tried." (This is hard for me to do, the competetive person I am, but I do it if needs be. THANKFULLY, needs didn't need be this year)
3)Ty has never loved reading, BUT...this year he actually achieved it. I finally passed on my 'love-of-reading' gene to him. Whew, it was difficult handing over that trait after birth, but I did it. He is finally reading books 'just for fun'. I'm so proud of him. New Basketball!


All you thought you knew about Micks:
1) Micky is the consumate artist. During the winter she rolled some snowballs together, stuck twigs poking out all over them, and wound toilet paper through the branches--Her First Sculpture. Now our house is always abounding with markers, crayons, clay, tiny pieces of paper, and toys set up in an aestheticly pleasing way. She loves anything to do with art. Just look at her room and you'll be able to tell the paint runs deep in her veins. This creation is called 'Toys'

2)Another thing I love about Micks is how much she loves the outdoors. I swear if I bought her a tent she would willingly live in my backyard. Of course, she would still want her lipgloss, pink clothes, and jewelry, but she would do it. In the winter, she's building snowmen and snow sculptures, and in the summer, she's collecting pretty rocks and making sidewalk art. I have to threaten her to get her in the house everyday--Just like my mom had to when I was a little girl. :-)
3) The last tidbit about Micky is that she LOVES to sing. She is a good singer, but the only problem is that she can usually only remember 1 or 2 lines to an entire song. Because of this, we get to listen to the same things sung over and over and over again--Until, she thinks of a different song and sings two lines of that over and over. It is a cycle really, but I wouldn't trade it. That's how I know she's at home and not outside sleeping in the neighbor's tree (something she's actually asked about before).

The Indispensable AJ
1) AJ has been into this reading kick lately. He pulls out every book he can find and sits and flips through every single one. Then he runs off to play. It is great that he wants to expand his literary talent, but it leaves a huge mess a lot of the time. His favorite books to read are how-to and cooking books. Kind of funny, I know, but maybe he'll be the next 'Top Chef', and then I'll never have to cook dinner again. (something that will propell him to the top of my favorite child list). Reading a Halloween Cookbook

2) The other day, I couldn't find AJ. He had disappeared. Luckily, he's picked up a little bit on Micky's singing and I was able to locate him in the bathroom, sitting on the potty, and singing 'P-p-p-poker face, p-p-poker face'. He was right on key. As soon as I opened the door, he said, "Hey mom, you're here. Time to wipe me." SO--ta-dah, AJ is finally potty trained. It actually wasn't that hard. I know you all hate me for saying that, but it wasn't. Score one for me!...or I should say...him.
3)The last thing you should know about AJ is that you should never cross him. He has finally hit the 'temper tantrum' phase. Yay Me! Most of the time, the kid is just happy-go-lucky and hunky-dorry. EXCEPT--when you tease him, take his cars or trains, force him to ride in the cart at the grocery store, or make him come in the house at night. This means, he is still happy 25% of the time and yelling about something 75% of the time. Who am I kidding? He's even loud when he's happy. At least I will never lose him in a public place. I'll just stand still and hear, BEEP, BEEP, PHFFFT (that's spitting), P-P-P-POKER FACE, etc. He pretty much yells everything he speaks.

All about Jer--zzzzzzzz
1) Jerry has a job working graveyard shift now. He's actually been doing it for almost a year. I can honestly say I know why they call it 'graveyard' shift. After living with someone who is tired 90% of the time and grumpy the other 10%, you wish you could send the people who made up that shift 'TO-THE-GRAVEYARD'. It has been a major adjustment for us. Especially since AJ talks at 100 decibles. He's adjusting though, and someday soon, he might actually get a day job.
2) When not working or sleeping, Jerry has started a new hobby--Four Wheeling. He just got himself a four-wheeler. It is white and very nice looking. He takes it out and gets it filthy dirty, then comes home and washes it. This is a double-positive for him. If you don't know him, then you wouldn't know about his obsession with keeping the cars cleaned. Now, he has one more thing he can wash on Sunday afternoons. How Happy! (Hey, when you're a walking zombie, you take any happiness you can get) :-)
3) This is happy more for me, than for him...BUT--Jerry does the laundry now. I know, SHHHHHHHH...he would be so embarrassed if any of the guys at work knew. He does the laundry all the time now. He complains, but I have offered to trade him. I'll do the laundry and he can help the kids with homework, cook dinner, clean up the dinner mess, clean the rest of the house, etc. So far he hasn't taken me up on it. I don't want to sound ungrateful however. I HATE doing laundry and I'm so grateful he does it. (Is there anyone out there who likes it? Honestly, folding a load of different, but all-white socks should be what they make prisoners do in lockup.) THANKS BABE! I snapped this picture while Jerry was doing Laundry in his Sunday Clothes...Porn for women? Oh, yes!

And that's it. The UP-date on the Jordan family. Really I just never sent out Christmas Cards or Family Newsletters this year, so I had to catch up some way. :-) May your lives be as exciting as ours!

LOVE,
US

Monday, December 7, 2009

A Few of My Favorite Things

Raindrops on roses and whiskers on kittens
Bright copper kettles and warm woolen mittens
Brown paper packages tied up with strings
These are a few of my favorite things?.?.?.?

Hum...I think if I were to make a list of favorites, kettles would not be on it--let alone bright, copper ones. Plus, I HATE brown paper packages. I prefer the bright patterned kind with fancy ribbon, not string. However, the song got me to thinking about the things I do love. AND lucky for you, I'm going to post ALL of them. So sit back and enjoy! (These appear in no particular order).

1. Sailing: I did this for the first time this year, and it is fabulous. The feel of the wind in your hair, the dolphins and flying fish cruising alongside the boat, sipping a nice Diet Coke. Nothing like it in the world. (By the way, the Pepsi in my hand is my husbands. Don't worry, my favorite diet soda--I would never cheat on you. :-)) 2. Sunsets on Turtle Bay: Pina Colada in hand, tiki torches, plastic poolside lounge chair. Ahhhhh...feel the relaxation.
3. Running: I NEVER thought I would say that. However, there is something wonderful when you hit your stride; breath becomes rythmic, feet turn to auto-pilot, and music blares in the headphones.
4. My kids laughing: I wish it happened more often. Usually it is the sound of squabbling that drifts up from the basement. But once in a while, when the moon is full, I hear all three laughing that deep-belly laugh that comes from true enjoyment--and they are actually doing it together. So Good! 5. A Completed Chapter: Writing is one of the most difficult, yet rewarding, things I've ever done. There is nothing better than putting the period at the end of the chapter that has been extremely hard to write. (Can't wait until I'm putting the period at the end of my completed book.)
6. My job: Working with kids is not the easiest of jobs, but it is definitely enlightening. Seeing a kid finally catch on to something they've never understood is priceless...AND...It never gets boring. So for someone with a short attention span like me, it is perfect. 7. A Clean Kitchen: This so seldom happens at my house, but when it does--magic is the only way to describe it. I love when the countertops are cleaned and the appliances shiny, the chairs pushed in and no crumbs on the carpet (yes, I have carpet in my kitchen--not my choice, but the people who built the house). It is the one room in my home that, when it is clean, the whole house feels clean.
8. Pajama Days: I truly adore days when I can stay in my pajamas from sun-up to sun-down. I enjoy staying in bed that long too. Usually my life is so busy, but every once in a blue moon, this happens, and I LOVE it!
9. Movies: Bad movies, stupid movies, funny movies, sad movies--it doesn't matter. I get excited even thinking about the smell of the popcorn, the sticky floor, the lights dimming, and the previews coming on the screen. I just relish sitting in a darkened movie theater. 10. Organizing: I know my house would never show this, BUT, I think organizing things is 'Da Bomb'. I make piles for each thing and then sort those into same colors, sizes, and shapes...and alphabetical order...sigh...alphabetical order is the best. I think I let things get messy again, just so I can organize it again. Very satisfying when something that was a jumbled wreck is finally laid out in order and function. Wish I had more time, because EVERYTHING, even my socks, would be color-coded.
11. Campfires: It is no secret to anyone who knows me that I hate camping. I don't like being dirty and I hate things not being convenient. However, I L-O-V-E sitting by a campfire. I like roasting marshmallows, hotdogs, and just the end of the stick. Even the smoke smell is kinda comforting (that is, until the fire is gone--then I don't want that smell around me anymore. I H-A-T-E smelling like a campfire.) 12. Good Friends: Every once in a while you get to meet someone who becomes someone truly special. Whenever, I get to spend time with someone like that, I get really excited. Doesn't matter if it's family, my high school buds, my teacher compadres, or my Writer's Group besties. I love them all! 13. An Awesome Book: Actually books should be higher on my list. I have had a love affair with books for decades (three to be exact). When I was younger, I would go to my friend's houses just to see what books they had. (Yes, I am a geek--check out my earlier posts about that). I wish they made a perfume room spray that smelled like an old book store. Ahhhh...the smell of wrinkly old pages and leather covers. Let me revel in it a moment.


Okay--done revelling.

14. Useless, but Interesting, Information: I have a penchant for 'Bathroom Readers'. No seriously, they have some really great info. in there. Little snippets on the edges of magazines or sides of cereal boxes. There are hidden facts all around us. I collect the facts and store it in a rarely used section of my brain entitled: "Things it probably doesn't matter if you ever remember again, but it's cool." 15. Conspiracy Theories: I like thinking that someone is always out to get someone else. Whenever I hear of a politician or a stock broker dieing, the first thing that pops into my head is "I wonder what they knew too much about." The guy who got pulled over and claimed he was an alien? Maybe he really is... Drug company virus creations, presidential cover-ups, you name it and I think it is interesting. The unique aside to this is, I don't believe in the major conspiracies. "Area 51?" pshaw. "JFK Assassination", maybe the Lee Harvey was just a wacko who wanted to be famous, so he killed the president.

...SO now you know a little bit more about me. If these don't stop you from returning to my site, then I don't know what will. I accept the fact that I am strange...I guess, you had just better accept it too.

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

Absence Makes the Heart Grow...Oh Who Am I Kidding?

I've been absent from the blog-o-sphere of late and have been feeling a little guilty about it, worrying that all those billions of people who read my blog would be missing me, when lo and behold, I see that no one has been reading my blog.

It makes me feel, oh I don't know, like that 25 page research paper you are forced to write in high school. You know the teacher is never going to read it, but you still work so hard making it look good. However, you slip in that one little line...'and you are probably not even reading this paper so I'm just going to say that you suck'--when, sure as shootin', you get your paper back with a large 'EXCELLENT' on the front and nothing else written throughout the entire paper.

That...is my blog.

And you know what?

I am perfectly okay with that. Because I have been writing...and writing...and writing, and I am loving it! I am now up to almost 55,000 words. I'm on chapter 18 and I'm half way to finishing my first novel. (Well the first draft of it anyway) I feel so accomplished. I've also started my list of 'Top 20 people I want to be my Literary Agent'.

So...I'm feeling an ackward pause...like when you meet that person you were good friends with 10 years ago, but haven't spoken to since, and now you've just finished up your small talk with them and don't know how to say "I gotta go."

Therefore, let me end with the classic..."I know, I know. We need to see each other more often. It's been too long. Yes, Yes, I'll call you." *kiss kiss hug hug* (Don't speak again for another 10 years)

*Really, I might post again soon, but if history repeats itself, it will probably just be with the classic 'Christmas pictures' no one else cares about but me. Oh, and certainly my list of things I'm thankful for in honor of Thanksgiving...you know, the usual. :-) Ta ta

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Shingles, Power Tools, Cowboys, and Pirates

My kids are at the perfect ages to mix up words and basically do the cutest darned things EVER! Here are a few of our latest:
Cute-ism#1
I'm sitting in the other room putting the binding on a quilt I'm making (yes, folks, that is no typo, I actually crafted something),when I hear Micky gasping and screaming out in fake pain. Then she yells in her 'irritated' voice. "I can't do it! I don't know how anyone does it!"
I answer her with, "What? What is wrong? What can't you do?"
She comes stalking in, "I can't do the shingles."
"The what now?" I ask.
"The shingles," she whines.
"What are the shingles?"
"This." And she goes down into the straddles on the ground.
Whew, I've never heard of anyone upset about not getting the shingles.

Cute-ism #2
I'm watching some t.v., just chillin with my two year old AJ, and Micky comes in with brush and hair dilly-dallies in hand. "Hey mom, want me to fix your hair?" she asks.
"Of course," I say. (because I love having my hair combed)
She climbs up next to me and starts brushing and coifing to her hearts delight. I notice AJ watching and taking it all in. Then he turns to me, "I fix hair mom?"
"Okay!"
He runs into his bedroom and I'm wondering what he could possibly be doing when he runs out with all of his play powertools, a huge smile on his face. "I fix."
He climbs up and starts sawing, hammering, and drilling my head.
Moral of the story: You're not a man's man until you 'fix' your hair with power tools.

Cute-ism #3
I had just picked AJ up from the babysitters and I'm in a hurry to get home, so I'm driving pretty fast. Suddenly I hit a huge pothole and the car bottoms out and scrapes on the pavement. I look in my rearview and see there are no car parts left on the road, so I figure it's all good. I'm worried though because I hear AJ whimpering in the back. To cheer him up, I yell "YEEEE HAAAAAW" as loud as I can.
He covers his ears and says. "Cowboys Yee Haw mom. You no cowboy. You no Yee Haw."

Last One
Over Fall Break Jerry and I took the kids to the new themed restaurant in Orem, Pirate Island. We had a lot of fun, making the menus into pirate hats, getting balloon animals, eating pizza and coconut shrimp, and playing lame arcade games to win enough tickets to buy a tootsie roll. Fast forward about five days.
I'm running late for work (as usual)so I run in and wake up AJ, trying to get him to hurry. He rolls over, stretches, and says something, but I don't catch it.
"Hurry, buddy, get up," I say as I bustle around his room.
He lays there, then says, "I go pirate ship now?"
"Pirate ship?"
"Yeeeeeep." (You have to hear him say this. He never says yeah or yes, it's always yeeeeeep.)
"Did you dream about pirates buddy?"
"Yeeeeeep"
"Were they mean pirates?"
"Nooooooo"
"So you dreamed about nice pirates?"
"Yeeeeeep"
"So you want to go to their pirate ship?"
"Yeeeeeeep, I need more cannie (candy)."

Monday, October 5, 2009

What Chew Talkin' Abou' Dan Brown or My Review of The Lost Symbol


Let me just begin with an excerpt from the book:(if you can't get through it, don't worry I had to skip over half of it myself)
"So tell me, Kate," her brother had asked while she was home on vacation during her sophomore year at Yale. "What are Elis reading these days in theoretical physics?"
Katherine had stood in her family's book-filled library and recited her demanding reading list.
"Impressive," her brother replied. "Einstein, Bohr, and Hawking are modern geniuses. But are you reading anything older?"
Katherine scratched her head. "You mean like...Newton?"
He smiled. "Keep going." At twenty-seven, Peter had already made a name for himself in the academic world, and he and Ketherine had grown to savor this kind of playful intellectual sparring.

What follows after this is a rousing debate with a few words like...entanglement theory, Subatomic research, Dharmakaya, 'at-one-ment', polarity, Kybalion, binary systems, superstring theory, and multidimensional cosmological models.
Hahaha...what fun! I always love these kind of physiological debates about the origin of man with my brother too.

Okay, I'm not saying the book is wordy per-se, but frankly, the book is wordy. I have enjoyed Dan Brown novels in the past and have always felt a little awestruck by the amount of information I learned through reading them. However, subatomic theory is a little over my head, and no one told me I needed to hold a Doctorate degree in order to know all these scientific and religious texts and people it mentions off-hand. I usually feel like a fairly smart individual, but for the first time when reading a novel, I felt like a complete moron.
I started to get bugged by comments like "I am standing in the sublevel basement of the U.S. Capitol Building" or "The room felt like a tomb" from the main character. And comments like "I am perfect" by the 'bad guy' as he stared at himself naked in the mirror.
There were other minor inconsistencies as well. For instance, if you had just been knocked unconsious and drowned could you honestly "run" somewhere right after this? Is it possible to have an appendage cut off, be shaved head to toe, see a loved one die, and still want to explain the inner dimensions of the masonic order in a very casual way, even 'laughing' over the cute way a person doesn't undertand what you are saying? I didn't think so either.
My last complaint has to do with Robert Langdon himself. As far as I know, this book is supposed to have taken place after 'Angels and Demons' and 'Da Vinci Code', yet the main character acts like everything he sees is a 'shock' he just can't believe. Honestly, how many times does he have to be trapped in a deep, dark, tiny space before he just gets over is claustrophia for heavens sake? How many times does he have to see something that was considered legend be true before he just kind of starts to believe in things before he sees them? Langdon really sort of drove me nuts in this story.

All of this being said...I would still recommend this book to other people, and no, its not because I want other people to be miserable. I like the underlying message of the book. I love the idea of 'science' and 'religion' co-existing without wanting to tear each other's eyes out. The information about the Masonic Brotherhood was also very interesting, and I did want to go to the places it mentions that are right in downtown Washington D.C. and see them for myself. There is also a very interesting twist right there at the end that is almost a 'Sixth Sense' kind of moment.

Overall... I give it 3 1/2 stars. Three stars for the things in the paragraph prior to this and a half star for character development and dialogue.

P.S. It took me four times longer to read this than any of the other Dan Brown books, so leave yourself plenty of time if you happen to read this for a book club or something.