Tuesday, June 30, 2009
But at least this time it's not me they're harassing.
Courtney (another LDS blogger) of CJane Enjoy It wrote a post the other day about a dining out experience. She called it "orgasmic." Some people went crazy and accused her of being pornographic. Seriously. Read the discussion here.
Here's a news flash for those of you who feel the need to take it upon yourselves to stand as self righteous judge and jury when you feel someone is inappropriate: You are doing more to hurt the "image" of the LDS church than whatever the perceived inappropriateness was in the first place. Speaking as someone who did not become LDS until I was an adult, let me tell you that the self righteousness of many members is probably the biggest reason people dislike the church.
I'm not saying you should tolerate things you feel go against gospel teachings. However, there are better ways to teach true principles. Be an example. Be kind. If you are a friend, speak to the person privately--don't reprimand them publicly on their blog. You only end up looking like an ass. If you are not close enough to the person to be comfortable talking to them, then you probably aren't the person to be pointing out their inappropriateness in the first place. If you want to say certain things are inappropriate, start your own damn blog and post about how inappropriate others are.
O.K., I'm done ranting.
For today, anyway.
Monday, June 29, 2009
A Bolivian news cast reported that they had exclusive footage of photos taken inside the jet moments before it crashed, including a shot of a passenger being sucked out the rear of the plane as it broke in two. They claimed that the memory card was found amongst the wreckage and that it had belonged to a Brazilian actor who was on the flight.
An e-mail about the courage of the photographer has been making the rounds as well.
There's just one teensy, little problem.
The photos are actually screen captures from Lost.
Sunday, June 28, 2009
So, first I awake to find out that Billy Mays, Infomercial Hero, has died (see previous post). Then Will totaled (probably) our van. With Ben in it.
He was on his way to pick up a woman who was getting baptized this afternoon. I've had a non-stop migraine for five days, so I opted to stay home. So, he took Ben instead.
Half an hour later I got a phone call from him saying I needed to come get him--he'd been in an accident.
He was crossing a major road (right in front of El Kiosko, for you locals) and somehow didn't see the other guy and drove directly into him. The front of the van is completely gone. The doors of the other vehicle were split open like a can opener had been taken to them. Miraculously, no one was hurt. Except, of course, our bank account.
In addition to the $160 ticket Will received, we are now down to one car. The van was fully covered, but we'll be lucky to get $3500 from it. Not really enough to pay cash for a replacement.
And here's the suckiest part: Barely two weeks ago we spent $400 putting new tires on it. Less than two years ago we sunk $2500 into it to repair the AC and brakes. Six months ago we sunk $800 into it for even more brake work. We may as well have flushed it down the toilet, especially the tires.
Oh, and there's the little matter of what our insurance will cost in six months when the premium will reflect Will's second accident. Remember when I told you how he totaled our friend's BMW in Germany? Yeah. So this makes number two that our insurance will have to pay out for.
Will likes to point out that I'm a bad driver (I am--there's no argument there), but I would like to publicly remind him and the whole internets that I have a spotless driving record while he has numerous tickets (luckily most are old enough to have been expunged at this point) and two accidents. Who's the crappy driver now? Tell me. Who?
And since I'm ranting, I may as well confess the two initial thoughts I had after he called me and further solidify my spot in hell.
1. "You'd think that driving someone to their baptism would warrant a little Heavenly protection. Guess not."
2. "So much for the four stinking prayers in Primary today asking that we 'travel home in safety.'"
***Update: Oh crap!! I just realized that Kim Coconuts and Keanu Crusher are in the totaled van. Oh nooooo!!!!***
No, not Michael Jackson. Nope, not Farrah either.
So, when you look up and see the white clouds and clear blue sky today, you'll know it's because Billy's been soaking them in OxiClean. And when you look upon the golden hues of the setting sun, you'll know that Billy was busy with the OrangeGlo. And when you bask in the light of the moon tonight, know that Billy hung it there with Mighty Putty.
I'm going to go whip up a smoothie in my Magic Bullet and wrap up in my Snuggie and mourn the infomercial world's greatest loss.
Friday, June 26, 2009
O.K., so we're home now.
Before I tell you about where we did go, I suppose I'm obligated to talk about Michael Jackson.
Umm, a crotch grabbing, high pitched squealing freak who likely molested (or at least acted inappropriately with) young boys died suddenly. So sorry. If this had happened back in 1983, I might be upset. I feel bad for his children--They not only lost their only parent, but he was so deep in debt that their only inheritance will likely be calls from collection agents.
As I mentioned before, we went to Orlando but Not Disney. In case you missed the debate (and why we would go to Orlando and not go to Disney), you can read about it here.
Orlando is hot. And expensive. And it's just not the kind of place I enjoy. It's not even a pretty city. Anything remotely beautiful or interesting is fake. Man made. A sorry re-creation. Why pay out the nose to see artificial sights when I could go see the real thing? The cost of admission to Epcot would buy you a plane ticket to Europe.
I know some of you out there love Orlando and all it has to offer, especially Disney World. That's your thing--more power to you. It's simply not mine.
The only theme park we visited was Sea World. The shows were good, the lines weren't horrible (Except at the gate to get through security. If we hadn't already forked over the money for a ticket we might have left right then). There was plenty for all three kids to enjoy. The downside was that we paid $10 for THREE small bottles of water and then $60 for lunch. Two hot dogs, two barbecue pork sandwiches (and it was probably Lloyd's babrbecue pork from a tub), a wrap with ham, some grapes, an order of soggy fries and five drinks. $60. We only spent $50 at TGI Friday's the night before and had steaks and ribs and chicken and mac-n-cheese made with bleu and gruyere cheeses.
It was supposed to be of Shamu leaping out of the water.
Anyway, the things that the kids seemed to like best were free. We went to the M&M store in a local mall, we went to Cocoa Beach (which I didn't love--I hate touristy beaches--but the kids really had a great time) the Lego store in Downtown Disney and hanging out in the pool. Oh, and being completely spoiled by their grandparents. They really liked that part. And that's the only reason we went in the first place.
For those of you clamoring for more random pics of me, that's me in the green shirt on the left.
My favorite part of the trip was when we stopped in St. Augustine and Anastasia Island on the way home. I could spend a week there quite happily. That's my kind of vacation--wandering through the cobbled streets of the old town seeing the remnants of the old Spanish colony, walking along the white powdery sand on the quiet beach, stopping into antique shops and local artisan shops...That's what I love. I'm thinking that will be our next vacation.
Thursday, June 25, 2009
Tuesday, June 23, 2009
Sunday, June 21, 2009
Anyway, just a few pictures from this weekend:
The turtle that was in the road that Ben ran over on our bike ride Saturday morning.
Me, my sweet orange bike and kids 2 &3.
Why yes, I did put a basket on the handlebars. Now I just need some streamers.
Me, 5 months out from surgery. 97 pounds lost.
Still rocking the red, white and black.
Saturday, June 20, 2009
Yesterday afternoon I was about to get in the shower when screaming commenced. It wasn't the normal screaming that I've learned to tune out. This was panicked screaming.
I threw the stinky, mismatched gym clothes (including the electric green pants that sometimes create the appearance of camel-toe) back on that I had just taken off and came out to find Liam covered in blood and screaming. The blood was coming from somewhere on his head, but there was just so much I couldn't find the source. I grabbed a towel and got the kids in the van as quickly as I could. I realized I left my keys inside, and on my way back into the garage Ben starts screaming that Liam is now bleeding from his eyes. I look into the van from the garage door (about 10 feet away) and it does in fact look like his eyes are bleeding.
So, I grab the phone and call 911. By the time the operator answered I was back at the van and realized that the blood was not coming from his eyes--there was just so much blood gushing from his head that it was now spilling down the front of his face as well as pouring down his back. I apologized to the operator and told her we didn't need an ambulance after all.
We got to the ER about 10 minutes later. At this point I was able to piece together the bits from all three kids and figured out that Liam was outside and hit his head on the edge of the vent for our gas fireplace (That secret portal directly to hell I posted a picture of ).
Anyway, they got us in to the nurse pretty quickly, but he doesn't think it's any big deal and sends us out to wait.
And wait we did. For four hours. Apparently adults with sore throats and runny noses trump blood soaked four year-olds with open head wounds.
Finally we get to see the doctor. Doctor Pye.
Dr. Pye obviously has some sort of congenital malformation. He has no neck (his shoulders are literally by his ears), short little arms and no thumbs. And he's probably only 5 feet tall at most.
Internets, you know that if anyone was going to get the doctor with no thumbs it would be me.
Anyway, he turned out to be a fabulous doctor. First he went out and ripped the nurse a new one for not sending us right back to him when we got there four hours previously. We clearly stated to the nurse Liam's heart history, and his file clearly denotes that he is to be given prophylactic antibiotics as soon as possible with any sort of deep wound. Also, there is a risk for him to have PVCs (Premature Ventricular Complexes) with that sort of trauma and blood loss. Also, we had to wait so long that the blood had coagulated into a big clot, so the doctor had to pull it out in order to stitch it up, which caused lots of screaming and additional bleeding from Liam--all which could have been avoided if the wound was still fresh.
Then, as he was stitching him up, Liam (who had been staring hard at him the whole time) says, "Hey, are you a troll?"
Dr. Pye answers, "Yes, I'm half troll! How did you know?"
So, awesome doctor. Also? He was surprisingly adept at suturing, considering he has no thumbs.
And when I finally got home late yesterday evening I realized that I'd spent the day at the hospital without a bra. Nice.
Friday, June 19, 2009
1. Geeks grow up to be hot. Give them your panties if they ask.
2. Claire is a fat girl's name.
3. Wax on, wax off.
4. Being the hottest thing to fly a fighter jet and/or dance around in sunglasses and tighty-whiteys and/or open a bar on a tropical island does not guarantee that you will not become a total nut job later in life.
5. You don't need talent if your name is Corey.
6. Real vampires don't sparkle.
7. It's better to have thirty minutes of wonderful than a lifetime of nothing special.
8. You'll never have friends like the ones you had when you were twelve.
9. Nobody puts Baby in a corner.
10. Each one of us is a brain, and an athlete, and a basketcase, a princess, and a criminal.
*A million points if you can name all the movies I referenced.
Wednesday, June 17, 2009
I'm not a Twitterer. Tweeter? Whatever.
But if you are, you can help the Iranian protesters. (For those of you too busy reading Us Weekly and watching The Bachelorette to know what's going on there, read about it here. And then you can get back to stories about Jon Gosselin.)
Anyway, here's what you can do (stolen from Vivian who in turn stole it from BoingBoing):
Help cover the bloggers: change your Twitter settings so that your location is TEHRAN and your time zone is GMT +3.30. Security forces are hunting for bloggers using location and timezone searches. If we all become 'Iranians' it becomes much harder to find them.
I have a lot of phobias. Seriously, a lot, people. And I also love pop-up books (I still really want this one, internets. My birthday is two months. Thanks in advance).
So I ordered it.
There are ten phobias illustrated in three-dimensional genius-ness and I suffer from a good third of them. Sad but true.
(I'm sorry the pictures are all sideways. I've contacted Blogger about it. And yes, they are facing the correct direction in my picture file. The problem is in the uploading.)
Acute anxiety brought on by the intrusion or threat of intrusion of the oral-facial complex by a practitioner of dentistry.
Tuesday, June 16, 2009
Many of you may remember our dearly departed Leilani Perkiboobs.
She was a bit of an exhibitionist, and then one fateful night she was brutally dismembered (I'm pretty sure this guy had something to do with it).
However, the legend of Leilani lives on through her merchandise in the Brandi Store.
Oh, how I've missed her gently swaying, perky girl-bits mocking my flat, deflated ones from the dashboard of the minivan...
But yesterday these two arrived in my mailbox directly from Hawaii (and Harmony).
The chickie will be Kim Coconuts. I think the picture is all the explanation you need for the choice of Kim, but in case you've been living under a rock or only watch Antiques Road Show and Dora the Explorer that would be Kim as in Kardashian.
Monday, June 15, 2009
2. Someone in Florida read all 240 posts of this blog yesterday, spending over 4 hours here. You are now my favorite reader, whoever you are. Send me an e-mail and I'll send you some ninja band aids or something.
3. I've started running once a week. Holy crap, it hurts. I feel like an 80 year old when I'm done.
4. Saturday mornings at 8:30 we're doing 10 mile family bike rides at the North Augusta, NC Greenway if any locals want to join us (e-mail me to find out where we're going to start and end). We did it this past weekend and it was a lot of fun, although I did whine that it wasn't enough of a workout for me (I'm giving up my Y workout on Saturdays to do this). So next week I apparently get to haul Liam and Amelia in the bike trailer. I'll probably be whining that it was too much of a workout.
5. I keep finding more and more reasons to love Asians. Not only do the little old naked Asian ladies at the Y keep me (and therefore you) endlessly entertained, but I recently discovered that South Koreans think that you can die from electric fans blowing on you. Seriously. They call it Fan Death. Read about it HERE. One of the best lines: "When informed that the phenomenon is virtually unheard of outside of their country, some locals claim Koreans are uniquely vulnerable due to a peculiarity either of their own physiology or of Korean fans."
Disclaimer: Any talk of amusing Asian cultural quirks and/or nakedness does not apply to April, who is quite "normal," though amusing in her own special way.
6. I played a flute duet in church yesterday and I completely and thoroughly screwed up the ending and I'm still burning with embarrassment over it. And I feel particularly bad for the other flute player, who happens to play professionally for the US Army. If you screw up a duet, you take the other person down with you.
7. I think I'm going to get one of these forms for my blog.
8. Biotin makes your hair grow. All your hair. Even some you didn't know you had.
9. I'm missing Europe like nobody's business today. Spain is calling me. Italy, too. And Germany. And France. Switzerland would be nice as well.
10. I just ate a grapefruit and now I can't feel my tongue or lips. Is that normal?
Saturday, June 13, 2009
So, here's a tip: If my mother ever asks you to help out with a New Year's Eve party, just say no. And run away.
My mother used to run a group home for mentally ill older adults. Since many of the clients living in the home have no family or are unable to go visit them, the holidays are always hugely celebrated at the group home. New Year's Eve was no exception.
December 31, 2003: An employee (we'll call her C) works the night shift and helps my mother with the party. Three weeks later she doesn't show up for work. Since that's out of character for her, my mother contacts the police. They find her in her home, and that she has unexpectedly died of the flu.
December 31, 2004: Employee B is the one working with my mother during the party. Two days later this relatively young woman (only 53) drops dead from a massive heart attack while walking to her car.
December 31, 2005: Employee B2 gets the fateful New Year's Eve party shift with my mother. A couple of months later? You guessed it. Sudden death from a ruptured aneurysm (this one was particularly bad--it happened on my mother's birthday and she was there and performed CPR until the ambulance arrived).
Suffice it to say, my mother no longer worked on New Year's Eve (not to mention the fact that everyone refused to work that night if she was going to be there).
But wait, there's more.
Part of running the group home was also managing some apartments where clients who could live on their own stayed with minimal supervision. As of now, all of the clients who lived there and all of the employees who worked there while my mother managed them have either died or are currently dying from terminal illnesses (all of them under the age of 60).
Now my mother works as a nurse in a prison. As far as I know, no one has died. Yet.
Friday, June 12, 2009
Thursday, June 11, 2009
We annoyed everyone by getting married on a Wednesday morning.
This is where we got married.
LDS Temple in Logan, Utah
This is also where he proposed. When I said yes, he asked why.
I married him anyway.
When we were about seventeen, sitting in someone's car out in the wilds of Wyoming with our friends, Will asked, "What kind of person should I marry?"
I answered, "You need to marry someone who can be a pillar of reason and stability to balance out the chaos that is Will."
Little did I know that I would end up with that job.
Wednesday, June 10, 2009
Dear nosy woman at the pool this morning,
When you see a four year old having a complete melt down because his mother (that would be me) told him he couldn't have something, do not come over and give him that said thing. And when the mother (again, me) immediately takes it away from him and hands it back to you and asks you politely to please not intervene, that means you should mind your own damn business. And when his mother (yup, still me) takes said item and throws it in the trash can because you try again to override my parental authority by giving it to him again, do not act all indignant and make comments (loudly) to those around you that some people shouldn't have children.
You know what else some people shouldn't do? Wear two-piece swim suits when they weigh 350 pounds, but it didn't seem to deter you.
Tuesday, June 9, 2009
You people think I'm exaggerating when I talk about life in the deep south. Here's further proof that I haven't even scratched the surface of the dysfunction and red-neckery that goes on here.
This was one of the top stories in the local news this morning.
For those of you who aren't going to click that link, let me 'splain. No there is too much. Let me sum up. (10,000 points if you can name that movie).
Some guy shot and killed his 6 year old grandson and then shot his wife (who survived) over a watermelon.
Yes, you read correctly. A watermelon.
As unbelievable (and sad) as the story is, it's the comments posted on the article that really took the whole thing to a new level of redneck, swamp-dwelling, confederate flag waving Georgian-ness.
They've been deleted at this point (thankfully), but most of them went something like this:
"That's what you get when you mess with a (insert offensive racial slur here)'s watermelon."
Seriously, people. Seriously.
I live here.
Germany felt less like a foreign country.
Monday, June 8, 2009
Sunday, June 7, 2009
Anyway, here it is:
I want your opinion (not that it will change mine, but I'm curious). In case you somehow missed me talking about it 800 times already, Liam was born with serious heart defects that have required two open heart surgeries and will require more in the future. Because of this, most amusement park rides (specifically those at Disney World, even the ones meant for little kids) are off limits to him. Forever.
So, we have decided that family vacations will simply not involve amusement parks. This is apparently a very controversial decision (who knew?). Several people think that we're "depriving" Ben and Amelia of the opportunity to experience places like Disney and that they'll grow up to resent Liam over it.
My opinion is this: I hope to H-E-Double Hockey Sticks that I'm raising kids that will not be so petty as to resent their sick brother over a Disney vacation. I think Disney is great, but I didn't get to go until I was a teenager and I wasn't scarred because of it. I know lots of well adjusted people who have (gasp!) never been to Disney World.
Personally, I feel sorry for the people who haven't visited the Louvre or swam in the Mediterranean Sea or eaten...anything...in Italy or collected shells on the Outer Banks of North Carolina. Our vacations have been about beautiful places and relaxation and being together rather than amusement parks, which, let's face it, can be stressful, outrageously expensive and not the happiest place on Earth after a few days with small children.
Who looks like they're enjoying their family vacation more?
We're going to Orlando in 2 weeks and we're not going to Disney. Apparently, this makes us freaks. (I agree that Orlando is a silly place for a vacation if one is avoiding amusement parks--we're only going because Will's parents will be there for a conference and driving 5 hours to Orlando is easier and cheaper than flying 5 hours to Wyoming to see them).
So, what do you think? Are we horrible parents for depriving two of our three children of the wondrous experience that is Disney/Six Flags/Universal/Etc...?
In other news, my house is officially and completely unpacked. Even the garage. I think this is a record for me.
Weight loss update: I'm down 92 pound since surgery January 14th, 122 pounds since September 9th. I'm 4 pounds from no longer being classified as obese and 33 pounds from my goal weight (and being classified as "normal" weight). Sorry there's no picture. I think I've lost less than 5 pounds since the last picture I posted, so there's nothing new to see, really. I'll try to remember to take one next week. I've entered the exreeeeeeemely slow weight loss phase where I'll be lucky to lose 5 pounds a month, so pictures will be fewer. On the bright side, my hair isn't falling out anymore.
Finally, Thank you, Karen!! Amelia is finally fitting into all those cute shoes and clothes you gave me last year. Note to others: If someone with adorably dressed children offers you a box of outgrown items, take them.
Adorable dress and adorable shoes courtesy of the T. girls. Thanks for growing like weeds.
P.S. Sorry for the crazy fonts yet again. Blogger still hates me. I think it thinks I'm inappropriate.
Saturday, June 6, 2009
Brandi's out wheeling around the neighborhood at 9:34pm. ON A BIKE. An Orange sculpture of drawn and welded metal, with a black flowered seat, Wide Handlebars with faux leather handgrips, and Whitewall tires.
We were at the shop to get my new bike tuned up, and the bikes were 10% off, and they're good for you, and I've wanted to go for bike rides with the whole family, and...
For the geeks out there, it's a "Simple W" built by Giant Bicycles. A super-light aluminum frame with chromoly fork, single speed with coaster brake, 26-inch tires, and seriously, it's very lightweight. It wears "tangerine" paint. It was kind of expensive, (More than my first "real" mountain bike in the early 1990s, ) but should last a lifetime. We realized on the way home that it's a "Signal Corps" bike- Orange and White are the colors of the US Army Signal Corps. (Where I work.)
It looks like this:
Only with Brandi on it.
And I like the combination. :-)
Friday, June 5, 2009
4. Speaking of inappropriate, are you frigging kidding me? I post word for word an Ensign article written by a member of the Quorum of the Twelve, where the only words I posted of my own were vehemently agreeing with every word he said, and still I get hate mail from other LDS church members saying I'm being inappropriate again. Watch out, Elder Holland. Next they'll be shutting your blog down, too.