Tuesday, September 30, 2008

a tea party...

I was extended an invitation to speak at Young Women's Tea Party. But, it really wasn't a "TEA" party it was a "T" party. This young women's group have been focusing on building their testimony. It was amazing.

So, I arrived at this amazing and gorgeous home. As I stepped out of my car, I looked at this most beautiful yard. Flowers and plants everywhere. The yard had white lights everywhere. Tables with beautiful centerpieces covered the yard. It was amazing!! In fact, I thought that I had just stepped into someone's yard decoarated for a wedding reception. I was invited to choose a table and sit and relax for a moment or two.

I chose to sit by this young women who was sitting by herself. I sat down and started talking with her. She was absolutely darling. Soon our table was filled and we treated to the cutest dinner. Can dinner be cute? Well, tonight's was cute. We had pink flower sandwiches, salad, chips served to us on china. We had this delicious punch served in these beautiful tea cups. For dessert, we had this yummy Frappe stuff, pink flower sugar cookies and mini cupcakes frosted with silver beads. It was so much fun and such a delight!!!

Then, I was invited to speak. It was amazing!!! I love it when things run smoothly--thoughts pop into your head right at the most important time. I just love this kind of exhilaration. I hope I did touch someones heart tonight. I know that my heart and testimony was strengthened.

This amazing group of young women were the sweetest girls ever!! I am grateful for the privilege and opportunity that I had to be to sit amongst them, listen to them and just be apart of their life for a brief moment.

P.S. Today, I am grateful for the gift of the Holy Ghost, for dedicated young women leaders, beautiful nights and for an invitation to speak!!

Monday, September 29, 2008

pass me the tissues please....

If you know me very well, you know that I have struggled with my immune system for a couple of years. When there is someone with a cold or something that is contagious..I avoid them like the plague. Not because I don't want to show sympathy towards them, but the real reason is I usually catch what ever they have within a 24 hour period or even sooner.

So, Friday, at work, a person in my department started coughing. I thought to myself--"Self--stay clear of her!" I thought that I had listened to my inner voice and maneuvered my way around those stupid germs--but some reason, I was tagged and woke up with a blasted cold. I hate having a cold. It just ruins everything--the head is pounding, the throat is sore and the sneezing and coughing--it just has to go. I am not a fan of these horrible signs of sickness. But, the thing with all of these symptoms--they travel to my voice box. I really hate when this happens. My voice goes a zillion octaves higher--I sound worse than Minnie Mouse. In fact, I had this happen a few years back--it was awful. (Actually, it usually happens every time--but I am trying to tell a story here). Anyway...back to the story.

I had a very high Minnie Mouse voice going on when I answered the phone at work. One of my clients on the other end of the phone burst out in laughter. He was laughing so hard that he could not control himself and had to hang up the phone. From then on I have been known as SQUEAKERS!!! It is not, "How are you doing, Michelle?" or "Michelle, I was wondering about this certain document." No it is, "Hey Squeakers, how are you?" or "Squeakers, I need this document sent to my lawyer on this or that."

So, this morning, I woke up with a raspy voice--not good!!! I could just hear the comments and see that today...was definitely not going to be a good day. Then, I kind of panicked. See, I have been invited by a young women's group to speak at their garden dinner tomorrow evening as their keynote speaker. I need my voice--my normal voice. I tried to limit my voice today--but when you have to talk-you have to talk (ok...when you have to voice your opinion...there is no stopping those vocal cords).

Also, a long with the raspy voice, I have gone through an entire box of tissues. I forgot to grab some this morning on the way to work, so Vieve generously donated her box of tissues to me. I filled my entire garbage can full of tissues today. Well...that got us thinking...where is all this snot (oh, I hate that word) coming from!!! So, Vieve took it upon herself to research this for me today. We (I mean she) found that "Increased mucus production in the upper respiratory tract is a symptom of many common aliments, such as the common cold." And that, "Nasal mucus may be removed by blowing the nose, picking the nose, or by using traditional methods of nasal irrigation." If you want to learn more about mucus go here. As for me, I will down some Night-Time Thera-Flu and pray that I do not lose my voice for speaking assignment.

P.S. I am thankful for tissues and TheraFlu!

Saturday, September 27, 2008

eat it quick...or you might not get any

So, I just would like you all to know that I have the most adorable niece in the whole wide world. I love spending time with her. She has the ability to brighten a horrendous day by just being herself. Whenever she and I are at the same place--she follows me around--you know kind of like a little puppy dog. In fact, I have been known to turn around and step on her fingers because I forget that she is right on my heels.

Well, let me share with you today's experience. Mom, Jessica, Brylie and I decided to check out a new scrapbook story that a friend of my has been raving about. WE were all starving so we decided to stop and get something to eat. We ordered our food and found a place to sit. Jessica put Brylie in the little chair (you know--the high chair looking thing) and placed her at the end of the table. Anyway, Jessica and I were the closest ones to Brylie at the table. Jessica begins feeding Brylie a cheeseburger and fries. She is getting so much better at eating. This is a huge step for her. Anyway, I was busily talking when all of a sudden Brylie grabs my container--fries and sauce are dumped out on the table and my lap. I turned and looked at Brylie and she has the hugest smile on her face (just like the one in the above picture). How could you get mad at such a cute little girl? So, I clean up everything and salvage what is left.

Not to long after that, with a hamburger in my left hand--I turned to say something to Mom. Brylie grabs the hamburger and stuffs it in her mouth. I could not believe what just happened. I looked at her and of course, she is grinning from ear to ear with the hamburger stuffed inside her mouth.

Oh, this is not the first time that this has happened to me. So, my advice, if you are ever eating with Brylie--either make sure you sit out of reach from her or you eat as quick as you can--if not...you might just go away hungry.

P.S. I am thankful for my sweet little niece-Brylie, my mom, Jessica, new scrapbook stores and sunshine!!

Friday, September 26, 2008

fabulous things friday...Pumpkin Chocolate Cookies

One of my most favorite things is...

Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies!!!

The other day I was reading Carly's blog and she mentioned that she loves this time of year. The fall season!!! I do have admit that I am right there with that one--I, too, love the fall season. Sweaters, sweatshirts, quilts, fire in the fireplaces....a change in the weather--I just love it. Then, she mentioned Pumpkin Pie and oh, I just wanted to share that one of my most favorite flavors (except for ice cream--because Strawberry will always be my most favorite ice cream flavor) is Pumpkin. I, absolutely, love Pumpkin Pie topped with Cool Whip, Pumpkin Chocolate Chip Cookies, Pumpkin Bread, Pumpkin muffins, Pumpkin cake and the list goes on and on from there. Plus, the pumpkin pie smelling candles--they are to die for.

Anyway, the other day, my friend-Gerb-posted a recipe for Super Easy Pumpkin Mini Muffins. So, tonight, I decided to make them. They are so delicious. You can find the recipe here or here. You just have to try them---they are delish!!!

P.S. I am grateful for Friday's, pumpkins, new recipes to try, and friends that make me laugh!!

Thursday, September 25, 2008

new recipe blog...check it out!

I got a phone call from my SIL, Jessica today. She asked if it would be silly to start a blog on recipes. I thought that it would be a fabulous idea. I love to cook & bake--so, I am excited about this blog. If any of you would like to share your favorite recipe....or if you want to try a new recipe...check out gotarecipeletsshare.blogspot.com

Oh, Gerb--I sent your recipes that you shared over to Jessica to add to the blog. They sound absolutely delicious!!! I hope that is a-okay.

P.S. I am grateful for new & fun recipes, google, and the new season of Grey's Anatomy (SHH!! Don't tell anyone that I am addicted)

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

I am lucky!!!

So, tonight, I had a huge event. I decided that it was time...time to purchase a new car. I have been toying over the fact that I really want and need a new car. So, I have searched and searched and I, FINALLY, found it. It is everything that I have dreamed of. So, after work, I drove to the magnificent dealership, picked out the love of my life, finalized all the paperwork, handed over the huge amount of money, took pictures of my new car to post on my blog and drove away in this magnificent thing. Isn't it amazing....

Ok, then, I woke up from my dream!!!

Yes, it was only a dream. I would love to own a Nissan Murano, but for right now, I will settle for

my neon!

But, today did mark another event in my neon's life. Before I share what happened, I would like to share with you something that I truly do not like. I can even go as far as using the word HATE in the sentence. Okay, so there are a few things that I HATE (yes, I know that it is a strong word). But, I HATE having any type of car issues at all. No, I am not exaggerating!! I do HATE them. Whether it is getting the oil change, a tune-up, an inspection, new tires, or anything else that might relate to a car--I truly HATE it. It is like a big huge dark cloud over my head. I even hate buying a new car. The reason I even hate that is I am always worried that I spent too much or I made the wrong decision. It consumes my thoughts and even my dreams (see above). Literally, it starts to drive me crazy.

See, let me share a few stories. I went to get an oil change one time and the dude said that I needed a new oil filter. I thought--okay. He said I had a special oil filter and charged me $50.00 for it. I went home and was talking to my dad. I told him I could not believe that oil filters cost $50 bucks. I still remember that look--you know, the look that makes you feel really dumb. Okay, I am dumb when it comes to cars. Now I know that I am not to pay $50 for an oil filter when you can go to AutoZone or Checkers and pay 1/8 of the price. Okay...another story...I purchased my neon. It was only 2 years old. I was so excited. I paid cash for it and went on my way. The next morning (yes, the next morning), I wake up to a puddle of oil underneath--which led to a new engine and a couple of thousand dollars later. Now, you know why I HATE car issues!

Anyway, back to today's event. it is that time of year when I have to get my car inspected and emissions. I HATE IT!!! I, constantly, worry about it. I can't sleep because it plagues my dreams. Thank goodness, I have a wonderful Dad that puts up with my constant worriness (is that even a word) over my car. See, I hear a weird noise in my car. Dad thought that it was coming from my exhaust system. So, Dad met me at the garage. The car dude checked and rechecked and checked again. He could not find the noise. It is not coming from my exhaust system. YIPPEE SKIPPEE!!! Maybe I am imaging things!!! So, onto the dreaded inspection and licensing!!! Today...I was lucky!!! I closed my eyes when the guy at the garage said that the neon passed everything and I was DEFINITELY thankful for another good moment. Thanks Dad for all your help and making sure that I was not taken for again!!

So, I am now a BLUE STICKERED WOMAN--oh, and my neon is around for another year. Hopefully, by next year at this time...I will be driving my Murano!!

P.S. I am grateful for blue stickers, my Dad, happy moments and my neon!

Saturday, September 20, 2008

What a Saturday!!!

WOW!! How much can you cram into a Saturday? I think that today takes the cake!! I started early and now I am 100% completely exhausted. This is how my day went...I had a meeting first thing this morning (9:00 am). Then, my card exchange swap at 10:00 am. At 11:00 am, I attended Celeste's baby shower at CPK (California Pizza Kitchen). It was great fun and yummy food!!!

Celeste opening her baby shower gifts!

Celeste opened a lot of pink outfits.

Her little one is going to be dressed in darling pink things!!

OH!! So CUTE!!!

Then, it was a zillion errands of picking up gift certificates for our Multi-Stake dance. Then, I ended up at Mom's to watch BYU stomp all over Wyoming. During half time, Mom, Jessica, Brylie and I ran an errand. As we turned onto my parents street, we noticed 4 police cars at the apartment complex. The police had their guns drawn and we noticed two woman standing close to the building. So, of course, we were a tad bit curious. We drove around the block to see what was going on. We figured it was some sort of domestic violence--not another thought plagued our minds. We returned to Mom's to watch BYU annihilate Wyoming.

Jessica went out to her car and came in yelling that something was going on. We went to the front yard and watched as a group of SWAT team members ran past my parents home.

I realized that I had my camera in hand (I had been taking pictures of my darling niece)...

so, you can see the back of the SWAT team!

There were police everywhere. The media was there and lots of people. They had blocked off my parents street. We noticed a bunch of people on the side of the street so, we walked towards them.
This group had rifles in hand and were going across my Mom & Dad's neighbors lawn.

Right behind us was another SWAT team--this team had the big wood thingy--is it called a "RAM". We approached the group of people and a lady told us that a man had a hostage and was heavily armed. It was scary. We had been standing on the sidewalk for a few minutes when a police officer walked over towards us and told us that we needed to move to the other side of the road. We were in the line of fire. What? How scary is that?

We crossed the street and was talking to Mom's neighbors when another group of SWAT team members came running down the street. This group had their rifles in their hands--ready to approach the situation. We watched for a few minutes then, we went back to my parents front yard. Shad had gone back into the house and was listening to the news. The news said that the man did not have a hostage--his wife had gotten out.

All of a sudden, the SWAT team headed back up our street and it was all over. The man was brought on a stretcher with a white sheet over him...a sad ending!

Then, it was off to our Multi-Stake dance. I was placed in charge of it along with 12 young men and young women. It has taken a lot of planning, but the youth have been fabulous. They have truly worked hard!! I have learned a lot from them. They truly are becoming such great leaders.

Planning stages....

These fabulous youth have planned and planned and planned...finally, it is time to create the decorations...

Sandy cutting out fence posts

Sean, Chase and Travis creating the enormous cow

Mery & Leticia making fence posts...

Leticia, Mery, and JoVan

Josie and Chase

Celeste, Sister Orme & Sam

The planning is finished!!! Time for the dance...we had some fun activities going on during the dance.

Pie eating contest

Donut eating contest

All in all it was a great dance!!! The youth looked as if they were having a great time.

But...I am exhausted...goodnight!!!

P.S. I am grateful for sleep, my bed, ice cold water, SWAT teams & Police Officers.

Friday, September 19, 2008

favorite things friday...Strawberry Ice Cream

One of my favorite things is...
Strawberry ice cream!!

I love ice cream, but my most favorite flavor in the whole entire world is STRAWBERRY!! It is a very known fact that Strawberry ice cream can turn the most horrendous day and turn it upside down and make it the most pleasant day ever. It is really true-at least for me. (Actually, to tell you the truth–any flavor of ice cream can make my day. I just love ice cream!!!) Oh, let me add...homemade strawberry ice cream is to die for!!!

So, let me share with you an experience...when I was living in Alta Apartments (north of BYU), I had a next door neighbor that I thought the world of. She was great and her name was Crystal. We had so much in common. We loved to do the same things, we were studying almost the same major and sometimes we even liked the same boys. But, there was one thing different. I had fabulous roommates and she did not. Her roommates were kind of a challenge. I was thankful everyday that I had the roommates that I did. I am not sure I would have lasted a semester with hers.

Anyway, I would be studying away in my apartment when the phone would ring, it would be for me and all I heard was a voice on the other end of the phone say, "Parking Lot". That was the code word to hurry out to the parking lot because Crystal was in need of a friend. Oh, It also worked the other way, too All I would need to say is the two code words "parking lot" and Crystal would be out there in a flash. We would jump into my car and head over to Springville. Our favorite ice cream place was called the Polar King and they had delicious ice cream–a different flavor every day. We would purchase our ice cream cones and sit and talk and talk and talk. When our ice cream cones were all finished, life was so much better. By the time we arrived back into the parking lot, we, usually, were laughing and ready to solve the world’s problems. Okay, maybe not the world’s, but maybe our own...

I know for a fact that ice cream brought a lot of warm fuzzies on some days that were not the greatest for Crystal and myself. If you ever have a sad day, call me up and say those 2 code words and I will rescue with ice cream!!

P.S. I am grateful for ice cream-especially, strawberry, parking lots, my friend-Crystal, memories, and laughter.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

have you ever walked under an overpass?

So,today I found myself leaving work early. Okay, not early, but earlier than I have been. I am usually the last one to leave in my department, but I did leave today before one other person. When I arrived home, I decided that it was such a beautiful day and so, I decided to go for a walk. I found myself just enjoying the beautiful weather. In fact, I love this time of year-where it is not too hot nor too cold--it is just right.

I ran into some friends--chatted, noticed all the brightly colored sunflowers, was approached by a drunk, smoking black man (hmm....a story in itself), and then....

I walked underneath an overpass.

Okay, I know it is strange, but I have never walked underneath a overpass. Have you? Well, I found it a tad bit creepy--everything was echoing. The cement walls that are at an angle are kind of disturbing. I would never want to be under one of those during an earthquake. Another thing is that you could hear the cars passing overhead--they were kind of echoing. I really did NOT like it. Then, as I was midway through--a car came speeding by. The noise from the car was a tad bit strange. It kind of reminded me of being in a tunnel, but different. Did that make sense? So, the next time you walk under an overpass--listen and let me know what you hear.

P.S. I am grateful for beautiful weather, long walks, cell phones, cold glasses of water, and daylight.

Friday, September 12, 2008

favorite things friday...

I love things...yes, many things...so, I want to share some of my favorite things. So, what is more perfect then sharing them on a Friday.

Favorite Things Friday!!

So, let me share with you one of my favorite things...it is


I love paper--not just any paper, I love cute paper. I love scrapbook paper. I love paper that has flowers on it, stripes on it, plaids, covered in objects, and basically, anything else. I love fun paper!! Okay, really, I just LOVE PAPER. I am not sure what it is but, I am obsessed with paper. I remember when I was younger and how I loved going to the Office Supply Store (okay...I still love to go to the paper store). I could walk the isles of paper, pens and notebooks for hours and hours. It is crazy. Whenever I go into a store such as Walmart, Target, the Mall (Hallmark stores & Archivers), or any store that has any sign of paper...I look and look. Okay, yes, I am crazy!!!

Lately, I have been organizing and cleaning my scrapbook room and I am horrified with the amount of paper that I have. Just estimating, I probably have over 5,000 pieces of paper--patterned paper and cardstock. Yes, it is crazy. I think that I could open my own scrapbook store in my room. I am really starting to think that I have a personal relationship with paper. One thing about paper---it can't really talk back or make you feel bad or...and the list goes on. How crazy am I? I am not sure how long I can sit and look at paper. Okay, I think I do have a relationship with paper...

P.S. I am grateful for PAPER!

Thursday, September 11, 2008

remembering 9-11

Where were you 7 years ago? As I think of that moment in life--7 years ago--I still remember what I was doing. I decided to go into work early. I had been working on a project and wanted to complete it. I was the only in my office that early in the morning. I turned on the radio and was working away at my computer.

Then, all of a sudden, the news came across the radio station. I just stared at the radio. Listening and waiting for more information. I remember tears started rolling down my face. Immediately, I called my Mom. She quickly turned on the television and confirmed what I was listening to was indeed true.

By this time, people were arriving at work. We all went to the huge conference room where they had a television on showing what had happened. After a bit, we would return to our offices and then, return to the conference room for more information. I remember going home to my parents home--in the security of their home and watching the recap of the horrific events that took place earlier in the day.

I could not believe and still can not believe to this day everything that took place that day. I feel strongly that the world changed that day. We witnessed through the media-people helping each other. We all witnessed the heartache, the sadness and the rescue efforts of everyone involved. We felt that scary feeling all day long and weeks after...We witnessed a nation come together to help each other and to morn with each other. My heart goes out to all those that lost loved ones that day. I know that they were definitely in my prayers. How grateful I am to be an American.

p.s. I am grateful for WEBEX (to be able to log in to clients computers & fix them), vacuums, scrambled eggs, cheese & tortilla dinners, ice cold water, and being an American.

Tuesday, September 9, 2008

counting my blessings...

Tonight, I came across a book that I had forgotten that I had. I opened it up and memories just seem to flood my brain. On the front cover it says "Counting my Blessings: a journal of things to be thankful for". This journal encourages the keeper of the book to remember 5 things to be grateful for each day. I started it back in 1999-March 13th to be exact. I am not sure what happened on that particular day. I should go back in my journal and find why I chose to write the following things:

1. friends to talk with to pass the time of day
2. little brothers to rescue in time of need
3. pretty things
4. sunshine
5. Movies that make you think, ponder & cry

It was interesting to read through the days, months and years. Amongst the many lines that were written on, I found some of them to bring back such fun memories. I was grateful for:

-toilet plungers
-book stores
-bike rides
-roommate dinners
-doctors--especially very cute doctors (hmm...I wonder about this one...)
-antibiotics to heal the body
-the sound of my Mom's voice
-the ability to count to 10 (I must have had a rough day that day)
-chocolate chip cookies
-time delayed windshield wipers
-cold cereal and milk
-my bed
-compliments-a random lady came up to me and said that I have beautiful eyes
-words of comfort
-grilled cheese and tomato sandwiches
-long walks on the Provo Trail
-pens to write in my journal with
-raindrops--the smell of rain
-naps in the afternoon
-indoor bathrooms

The list goes on and on from 1999 through 2004. There were many that I just laughed and laughed when I read them. They all brought back such great memories. These great memories were filled with laughter and of course, tears. Sometimes life get really difficult, but when you concentrate on finding 5 things that you are grateful for...some of the difficult times aren't so difficult.

I found that there were still quite a few pages to fill. I have decided that it would be great to continue the list of things that I am grateful for in my life.

What are you grateful for today?

P.S. Today, I am grateful for clean desks, ice cold diet coke, phone calls from friends, having dinner with Mom & Dad, the sound & smell of rain...