Thursday, March 31, 2011

Train Ride

Pros and Cons of lunchtime bike rides

1. No blackberries allowed. Being disconnected in the middle of a work day feels decadent. We'll see how that flies when Games prep heats up
2. Workout is done and leaves evenings free!
3. The sound of four or five bikes changing gears on a climb is awesome
4. My coworker has appointed himself as my cycling coach and when he's not kicking my butt, he's making me a better rider (oh wait, that's probably true ESPECIALLY when he's kicking my butt.)
5. Way more energy post ride than post lunchtime Chipotle overdose

1. I've seen way too many of my coworkers naked in the locker room
2. Bike short tan
3. I've just never as cute post ride as I was when I left the house : (

Tuesday, March 29, 2011


Dear internet:

Oh hey thanks. This is awesome.


Monday, March 28, 2011


Turns out Aunt Katie needn't have worried that she didn't have enough toys in her house.

Wednesday, March 23, 2011


I moved to Huntington Beach for the first time almost nine years ago. There was a little group of guys in my singles congregation that everyone referred to simply by their address. The "210 house" were all really funny, really cute, really smart surfer boys who lived approximately 90 seconds from the beach.

Needless to say, little 25 year old me was utterly terrified of all of them. I happened to hear at church one day that they had launched a website of some sort where they were posting articles about music and movies and girls and various other things that float through the heads of twenty-somethings with plenty of spare time and disposable income.

Let's remember that in 2002, "blogs" were not widespread. Social networking was only sort of a thing (remember "Friendster"?). We did not have the kind of insane insight into everyone else's lives and thoughts like we do now. So this website? It felt a tiny bit like being a little female fly on the wall of guyworld. So of course they all had kind of amazing taste in music and movies and in writing they were not just funny but insightful and clever. I was even more afraid to speak to any of them.

And then one night. I was in the Tower records in Costa Mesa and I saw three of them browsing the same section. I knew I was in trouble. I had a rule that since it was way too overwhelming to introduce myself to everyone in my GIANT ward, if I saw people from church outside in the real world, I had to go talk to them. So I worked up every bit of nerve I had and approached each of them as our paths crossed. To this day I love to tease them that the fact that ONE little me was friendly to THREE of them means I totally win. They were all so super nice and over the years those guys have become dear friends and some of my all-time favorite fellas.

So this week when I was flipping through Twitter and saw and update from Nate saying simply "the bendies has a pulse", mine quickened a little. The boys are apparently back in town. Now podcasting here, go over and take a peek. I really don't think you'll be disappointed.

Lastly, this post gives me an excuse to post this awesome song. A song which happens to be the same age as me. And Nate from the podcast. Synergy!

Monday, March 21, 2011

Harry and Sally

One of the many perks of being a grown up lady is being mature enough to take full advantage of male-female friendships. With all due respect to When Harry Met Sally-I am convinced that men and women not only CAN but SHOULD be friends. There is something a little bit sad to me about a world view where all relationships have to be sexualized.

Which is not to say that a friendship with a guy is exactly the same as my girlfriends-it's not. When some dude has broken my heart, it seems 100% more true when someone with a y chromosome says, "that guy missed out," than is does when my lady friends say the same thing. I really appreciate the perspective my male friends can bring to things and the way they force me to examine the way I think. Many moons ago I was whining about some relationship thing to my friend Jimmy, simple advice of, "don't be a girl Clifford, be patient and let him figure it out," turned out to be pure gold.

So I was delighted last week when my pal Damian, who I have known since the fifth grade, called to say he had come down with Jimmer fever and would be in Denver for the weekend. I drove up Friday night and we had a truly lovely evening of books and good food and life theory swapping. We played a game at the bookstore where instead of shopping for ourselves, we each bought each other a book. Well, two books. And then we each bought ourselves two books. Nerd alert! Then we went to dinner where Damian totally broke my heart by eating a quail. We discussed church and old friends and reasons we are still single and even spilled a few secret high school crushes-always a fascinating topic. After weeks and weeks of crazy travel (which was all fun!), it was nice to relax and catch up with one of the nicest, smartest, most interesting guys I know.

I think the majority of my readers probably see all my endless photos on Facebook but here are a few fun ones from the last two weeks.

Vacation fitness!

Worth the 4:30 wake-up call

Music on the beach and a floppy hat? Am I in Heaven?
Dear everyone, we are sleeping in a car. Safely though.

The Dojo St Paddy's party. College flashbacks commence.

What is that hat??

Why yes, Irish KISS was at the party too.

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Storm Watch


Last thursday night we were driving to our condo after dinner and a walk on the beach in Waikikki when I got a tweet from my friend, "@replikate sorry to ruin your vacation but it looks like there is a tsunami warning out for Hawaii." I read it to the car and I think we were all just about to roll our eyes when we noticed about 25 cars lined up at the gas station.

And then there was a warning siren. Turns out you can ignore your friend's debbie downer tweet but you can't really ignore that sound. We turned on the radio and learned that the earthquake in Japan had caused concern that a giant wave was headed for the islands of Hawaii. Inundation zones were to be evacuated.

We were close to our condo so we decided to go on and see what the word was when we checked in. The guard told us to turn on the TV and follow instructions. You know what is a weird thing? To turn on CNN and see them talking about the very place YOU ARE STANDING RIGHT NOW. At this point it was pretty clear that we probably wouldn't be spending the night in our cute beach condo but rather in our spacious Ford Fusion. We filled water bottles, posted that we were safe on every social network we could think of and headed off to the nearby LDS Temple grounds in Laie.

The parking lot was packed so we found a little space and then took a walk around the temple grounds. It had been our to do list anyway and we joked that we could tell our parents we were SO spiritual we hit the temple first thing.

Our friends Mike and Whitney were on the last flight being allowed to land at the airport so we told them to get in the car and they finally found us at about 1:30. We were four hours behind most of our families and friends back on the mainland but all of us started getting worried emails and texts from people who had either stayed up late watching earthquake coverage or who were up early. We all tried to sleep but our phones hummed pretty much the whole night. And frankly, if I'm stuck on an island with a potential tsunami on the way, I'd prefer to go down knowing that the people I love were thinking about me.

The wave was supposed to hit at 3 in the morning. It didn't. And by 7:30 the mayor had declared it "all clear" to go home. We raced home and fell exhausted into our little beds and slept until we decided to continue our naps on the beach. By then the sun had come out, the air was warm and our biggest issue was "strawberry or pina colada?"

As a little kid, maybe my biggest fear was that I would be at school when "the big one" hit Salt Lake. I was terrified for weeks after I read "Night of the Twisters" thinking a tornado could somehow get to Utah. Lightening made me run through the house closing all the windows. The recurring dream that I have that ISN'T that marriage one is that I am playing in the ocean in Huntington and the waves get as big as a skyscraper and I can't get back to the sand. Scary weather really, really freaks me out.

So I was a little suprised at how nonchalant I felt about the whole thing. Maybe it's because we watched some of the footage from Japan before we left and compared to what they were dealing with-having four hours advanced notice and the opportunity to let everyone know we were safe felt like an absolute luxury. Maybe it's because I felt sheepish that I had been SO over the top upset about missing my flight earlier when the only real consequence had been I didn't have to wait two hours in the airport for my friends to arrive. Maybe I'm finally realizing that worrying and freaking out has never, ever once solved anything?

I know I say this a lot, and maybe it starts to sound like I'm making it up, but as I was trying to fall asleep against the window of that car I felt overwhelmed by the good things in my life. And recommitted once again to trying to be better with that life. Nicer, more patient, more forgiving, kinder, more generous. Not to be afraid to put my cards out with people I care about.

So thank you internet, so many of you blog readers reached out to make sure I was OK and I'm sure that was a healthy part of why there was more giggling than worrying in the Fusion that night.

And let's keep praying for Japan eh?

Wednesday, March 16, 2011


Well my crazy travel month is over and I'm back to real life. Which of course means that my friend Damian will be in town Friday night and my friend Haley will be in town on Saturday and my nephs are bringing their parents to the Springs next weekend so you know, real life is sort of a relative term chez moi.

However, I did a pretty fair amount of thinking while laying on beaches and it's time for some spring cleaning-in my house, in my diet, in my schedule and in my heart. Maybe it's my 18 month itch rearing it's little head but I am hungry for some change. Stay tuned I guess.

Meanwhile, Corey made a soundtrack for our trip and I am pretty much obsessed with this track.

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

Rush Hour

Usually by the time the end of a vacation rolls around, I'm ready to go home.

Not the case this time. I'm leaving in the morning but it's kicking and screaming.

I'll be back Hawaii, don't you worry.

Thursday, March 10, 2011


2:30 pm Wednesday-check in to flight
6:00 pm Wednesday-drive to Denver for dinner with Al and Mundi
11:00 pm Wednesday-crash at Al's so I am sure to wake up at 3:45
3:30 am Thursday-wake up because too excited
4:05 am Thursday-leave Al's for DIA
4:45 am Thursday-arrive at DIA
5:00 am Thursday-get in terrible security line
5:53 am Thursday-miss flight to Hawaii by three minutes



Tuesday, March 08, 2011

Little Miss

Alpha Phi's Take Denver 2011 was an utter success. Eight of us from Colorado, Texas, Utah, Idaho, D.C., Seattle and New York, met up in Denver to pretend it was 1997 for a few days.
There was walking.

There were red velvet pancakes.

There was jumping (it's hard to keep Jed on the ground.)

There was Cafe Rio!

There was art.

There were so many tables for eight (and SO many great servers! Good job Denver!)

There was culture.

There were personality markers.

And there was a lot of laughing. Really so much laughing. College friends know way too much and when you get eight of them in a room together-well it's amazing how many silly things you forgot about there are that someone else vividly remembers.

There was also quite a bit of talking. And some revelations. And a quote from my friend Steph that is sort of burned into my brain. We got talking one night about crappy stuff people were going through and she said the biggest lesson she has learned in her own struggles is "don't compare pain."

It's an interesting thing to be with a group of people you knew back when you were all making your big plans. Because you all shared your dreams and your expectations and at 18, 19, 20, those dreams were pretty unfettered by reality. Weren't we all going to marry rich doctors and have powerhouse careers and kids straight out of central casting? I mean, obviously.

Well no one married a rich doctor (yet!) but there are plenty of great careers, and cute kids and several of the husbands are guys we went to school with and all adore. And there are eight really quality lives that are pretty different from what we imagined. And thank heavens right? THANK HEAVENS your life isn't held to your 18 year old plans.

But being with people you've known for 18 years and who know you so well they don't buy the PR we are all doing for ourselves all the time means that when it gets late, and maybe when some people have had more than one cocktail, things start to come out. And you learn that even good marriages are a ton of work, and no job is as glam as it looks on FB and sometimes babies are harder to make than you thought and adult relationships with parents are complicated-in other words (earmuffs mom), everybody has their shit. And it's 100% useless to put yours up against anyone else's.

Maybe my favorite thing about the weekend though was that even with all the truth serum and all the tearful confessions, there was still so much laughing. And so much supporting. And so many strong, beautiful women (and Jed!) who are oh so skilled at getting through the stormy bits with a sense of humor and a hand still ready to reach out to someone else. I feel incredibly lucky.

So I was thinking about all of them when this song rolled through Pandora yesterday. I'm sort of in this moment where I really appreciate a good "you go girl!" lyric. Because I sure do appreciate my girls.

Little Miss do your best
Little Miss never rest
Little Miss be my guest, I'll make more anytime that it runs out
Little Miss you'll go far
Little Miss hide your scars
Little Miss who you are is so much more than you like to talk about

It's alright, it's alright, it's alright
Yeah, sometimes you gotta lose 'til you win
It'll be alright again, I'm okay

Monday, March 07, 2011


For whatever reason, this song is stuck in my head today. Sure like her.


The weekend was a smashing success and even though I came home to a freezing day and a cold, I feel completely filled up. I have more things to say about the event but today I'll just share this.

I was one of the billion people who helped Hootie and the Blowfish sell an insane amount of records and to this day, I think Darius Rucker has one of the best rock voices ever. And since someone is going to have to forcibly remove Adele from my playlist at some point, this version of the Lady Antebellum song "Need You Now" is rocking my socks right off. If I were wearing socks.

Thursday, March 03, 2011


Right now my friend Jed is washing red Garden of the Gods dirt off his feet at my house, Mary and Jen are in Denver checking into our hotel and the other girls on on airplanes set to touch down over the next few hours. We have three days to catch up and gossip and not sleep and talk about boys and basically pretend we are all 20 again and our biggest worry was whether or not staying up until 3 would affect our ability to get to that 10:00 Comm class.

Can't wait.

Wednesday, March 02, 2011

Fire and Rain

So I felt just a bit cheesy on Saturday morning when I went for a run past Buckingham Palace and down the to the Thames and listened to Adele and Florence and the Machine the whole time. Like if some Brit was in Huntington and blasting The Beach Boys the whole time.

But then we went shopping and I'm not kidding-nearly every store we went I heard either "Rolling in the Deep" or "Dog Day Are Over" and I felt better.

The new Adele album just came out and if the comments on my Facebook status are any indication, girls and gay dudes are TOTALLY LOVING THIS ALBUM. This woman has a voice I would trade all my sibling for, and you guys know how much I love those guys. Even without a voice like hers though, you can't help but belt these suckers out-so much intensity.

The whole thing is good but these two have been stuck on repeat all day.