Saturday, August 29, 2009

I thought I was getting over this...

I'm not.

it's too late to turn back

I know that this is going to make us sound crazy, but it's the truth. On Friday night, around 6pm, I talked Klayton into taking a quick weekend trip to see my brother, Adam, in Portland, OR. Portland is about 11 hours away from Idaho Falls, but we figured, Hey, Avery will sleep on the drive and this is our last opportunity since school starts back up this week! So we packed up, ate dinner, and were on the road by 7:30! By the time we were pulling into town on Saturday morning, groggy and ill-tempered, I almost forgot why we set out on our Portland Adventure. But then we pulled into Adam's driveway and remembered in a flash. It was so good to see him and his house (so cool) and his town (cooler still). The all-night drive and fussy kiddo were so worth it! I'd do it again in a second. In fact, I wish I could. We saw many things in the 30 or so hours we spent in Portland- here's a breakdown for you in case you ever get to go there!

My Five Favorite Things in Portland:
5- Pioneer Square/The Waterfront. Portland has a cool pioneer history (I guess the Oregon Trail is, like, literal.) and they have this big town square and river walkway where cool things are always happening. In passing we not only saw a spiritual songfest and hippie craft fair, I actually saw a 40-something man with tulips painted on his face with his hands in the air and his eyes closed singing "PRAISE HIM!!" over and over next to a booth with a banner that said, "Are you going to heaven? Take our two question quiz to find out!!" Needless to say I really wanted to take that quiz, and it will probably haunt me to the day that I die that I could have found out about my afterlife potential and didn't.

4- Powell's Book Store. Portland has this really cool motto- "Keep Portland Weird". Adam told me that it is talking about the city's love of small, locally owned businesses instead of large, megamart chain stores. While there is nothing wrong (in my book) with a good megamart every once in a while, I love the idea of cherishing local businesses. And Powell's Book Store is definitely a Portland landmark. It's ginormous (yes, that is the technical term)! They buy and sell used books as well as new titles, so they had a crazy selection! And a rare book section with first edition classics worth thousands. And they had Fancy Nancy books in the kid's section- which most book stores do. I just wanted to give Fancy Nancy a shout out. She's the coolest. Anyway, it was fun to wander around and lust after all of the books that we wanted (we did pick up a few, but you should have seen our "wants" pile).

3- Multnomah Falls. This is the huge waterfall right outside of Portland that has a cameo in the movie Twilight. Sure, it was famous way before that movie came out, but, hey, let's face it- "Edward" was there. That's enough to make just about anything famous. If I heard that he favored a public toilet somewhere in the city, you better believe I would have gone there, too. Ooookay. Just kidding... mostly. It really was so beautiful and cool. Adam said that in the springtime it's 3 times as big as it was when we saw it and it soaks you when you are anywhere near it. Fun! And pretty! All of the trees around it were all mossy and stuff. Hey, I'm from the desert. Things like that impress me, okay?

2- Food. Okay, food is always the best part of any trip (except for my #1- you just can't beat that!). Portland (because of the whole KEEP PORTLAND WEIRD thing [see #4]) had some awesome restaurants. Adam and his friends took us for sushi at this place where a conveyor belt circles the entire restaurant and they charge you per plate that you take off of it- did I explain that right? Oh well- and they took us for BBQ at a really neat, home-cooking kind of place (yes, I ordered the home made peach pie along with my bbq brisket sandwich. mmmm) and to another Portland landmark- VooDoo Doughnuts. This place is insane! It's in downtown Portland and it's super famous for it's wacky doughnuts. Adam and I ordered the Old Dirty Bast... well, you get the picture. It is a doughnut covered in chocolate glaze, peanut butter and smashed up Oreos. Yes, you heard me right. Klayton got a maple bar with bacon on top. Av got a mini M&M doughnut. Adam's friends got one with Cap'n Crunch on top. And we all got the Memphis Mafia- a HUGE bear claw with chocolate, peanut butter, peanuts and chocolate chips on top. Oh and we went to this unique-to-Oregon burger chain called Burgerville (sounds lame, huh?) on our way home, and it was delicious, too! They use all local, in season stuff and change their specials according to what's fresh. When we stopped there it was cherries and Walla Walla onions! Y-U-M. I have a new motto for Portland: "mmmPortlandTastesYummymmm"

1- Uncle Adam. I have a great brother. When we decided to leave on this trip about an hour before we piled in the car and headed out, I called Adam and asked him if he'd be cool with dropping all of his weekend plans, vacating his room in his apartment, and playing Tour Guide for a day and a half. He said no, but we came anyway. Just kidding! It was so fun to see him and his town- it sounds weird, but that town just fits him! It was perfect. He loves the rain (so do I, for that matter. Must be a desert-born thing again.). He loves the sites. He's a pro at the tour guide thing already and he's only been there a year. Avery is just in love with him (and all of his WALL-E toys), too! We got to meet a couple of friends of his, Jamie and Brooke, and they were awesome girls as well. I'm so glad that he's doing well and has such good friends! Thanks for a great weekend, Adam!

Thursday, August 27, 2009


This is Rocky, our new Boxer pooch. He's about 8 weeks old. We have been talking about getting a dog for Avery (who is an animal nut) and us for quite some time, and this week we decided that the time is right. We had our eye set on a Boxer for their energy and family-friendliness, and we are already positive that we made the right choice. He is a sweetie and has won over the heart of everyone he has met so far.

We are enrolled in puppy obedience school and have purchased a bunch of food and toys and such, but if you are in the area please come by and see him- he needs lots of activity to wear him out! And if you have any doggy advice PLEASE lay it on me. I'm in over my head as far as pup discipline is concerned.

Monday, August 24, 2009

Thursday, August 20, 2009

bon appetite

I just got back from Girls Night with Mandy, Shellena and Cindy (my sisters-and-mother-in-law), and we had a fabulous time going to see Julie and Julia. It was a wonderful and extremely well-acted (Meryl Streep you are amazing) movie about a woman on the brink of turning 30 who feels like she is drowning in the meaninglessness of her everyday life, and finds joy and purpose though starting a blog about cooking her way through Julia Childs' classic cooking tome Mastering the Art of French Cooking.

Through flashbacks of Julia in Paris and throughout her life, this movie is both a bio-pic and a human-spirit-triumphs story. Just be sure to eat a good meal before you go to see it- it's not easy to sit through two hours of buerre blanc and boeuf bourguignon on an empty stomach. Also, try your best to ignore the multiple boom mic interferences throughout the picture (when I say multiple, I mean it! I think toward the end of the film I spotted it in EVERY SHOT. No exaggeration.) ***I told my brother, Adam, about this and he told me it was probably the dummies at the Rexburg theater who set the projecter alignment up wrong. So... I guess I'm the dummy. :) Never mind about the boom mics.**** and the F bomb they just HAD to drop for some effing reason (Hee hee. But seriously- I hate gratuitous naughty language in movies, or anywhere for that matter. It just feels like high school all over again). Otherwise this film is absolutely lovely. Take your favorite foodie with you and check it out. Now, if you'll excuse me, I'm going to poach myself an egg.

all hale

The Actor and the Housewife: A Novel The Actor and the Housewife: A Novel by Shannon Hale

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

I gobbled this book up yesterday! I really just hunkered down about 80 pages in last night at 10pm to read a bit before bed and wound up with a box of Kleenex on my bathroom floor at 3:30 this morning turning the last page. I just had to know what would happen!! While the ending is bitter-sweet instead of completely swoon, sigh, ride off into the sunset-worthy, the plot of this book is irresistable. Becky Jack (I love her name!! She sounds like a Pirate Queen or an English, pick-pocketing orphan), Utah Mormon mother of three-with-one-on-the-way, meets Felix Callahan, [British!!] Hollywood Superstar Extraordinaire, and they have an immediate and surprising connection. The story follows the two of them over a decade or so, and their exploits in a friendship that neither of them can understand or deny. Sounds juicy, right?

I was guffawing (there really is no other word for the sounds I was making) throughout the whole thing. I also found myself sobbing for a good 15 minutes at one part. But mostly I just sighed quite a bit at this wonderful story about friendship and family. I love Shannon Hale's writing style, her wit, and her ability to make me forget (about 25 pages in) how ridiculous and unrealsistic her plotline is. Heck, not only did I forget, I threw myself into the whole fantasy. I took away from it a warm fuzzy feeling that there is nothing like a bosom friend -that's what Anne [of Green Gables fame] calls it. Hale tries metabuddy and liver as descriptors of it in this book, but whatever you call it, everyone needs one. I think I'll ask George Clooney to be mine.

View all my reviews >>

Wednesday, August 19, 2009

bear it all

We spent this Saturday at Bear Lake with Klayton's family and it was so fun! I am not happy to see summer go, but I can't seem to stop myself- I am looking forward to this Fall in a major way!! Thank heaven for seasons!!!

Monday, August 10, 2009

i'm nearly old, i'm almost young, or so i'm told

Just got back from a trip to Las Vegas, Phoenix and Pine Valley with Ashley and Avery. It was so wonderful, even though it sure is good to be back home with Klayton. We had a great time, saw a Bobby Long concert, met a few Elvises (or is the plural of Elvis Elvi?), swam, played, went to a wedding, melted in the desert sun, etc. My family are all wonderful and we had a great time seeing them. Next up? Bear Lake this weekend. School. The Fair. A trip to Portland. A river float trip. And then September. I love our crazy life.