Tuesday, May 25, 2010

20 Things to Do Before I Turn 20

Not to say I haven't accomplished any of these in my lifetime before, but I want to do them once, or again, before I turn 20. I've got a little less than a year left! I've been working on this list for a while, and I still might add/delete a few things, but here's my rough draft. (I even had it started before I tried snowboarding, which is why that's on here, but checked off already).

Get motorcycle license
Go on a road trip sans-parents
Eat oysters
Ride the Catapult at Lagoon
Read a piece of educated literature
Attempt to donate plasma
Try snowboarding    X
Ride the bus
Bake a cake from scratch
Ice skate with a boy I like
Attend 8 concerts (2 more to go)
Watch a documentary
Go clubbing
Keep driving record clean
Take a vow of silence for a day
Apply for knighthood, just for fun
Attend adoration
Tie dye something
Go to the lady's gym
Keep up with my blog! (once a week)

Possible replacements if I change my mind about these things (in other words, they're on the back burner but I'm not committing to anything):
Get my splits back
See a comedy show

Find a steady job
Move out!

Saturday, May 22, 2010

The Coolest New Things to Enter My Life

This past week has been pretty devoid of spectacularly blog-worthy events to discuss, due to it being summer and there being not much to do (and also my stupid foot thing going on), but I HAVE been making some cool discoveries lately on my own time. I just want to take a moment to share.

**Jimmy Eat World - Work
This song was on one of the episodes of One Tree Hill that I recently watched (season 2) and I LOVE IT. That show tends to produce good soundtracks overall, but I seem to be addicted to this song in particular. I haven't really listened to their music before now, but I might become a fan pretty soon.

**The Sugar Queen by Sarah Addison Allen
A cute novel my mom bestowed upon me by an author we previously had both liked. It's got romance, self-discovery,
and a touch of magic (but not in the Harry Potter fantasy-genre way). In the words of the blurb on the back cover: "
Josey Cirrini is sure of three things: winter is her favorite season, she’s a sorry excuse for a Southern belle, and sweets are best eaten in the privacy of her closet. For while Josey has settled into an uneventful life in her mother’s house, her one consolation is the stockpile of sugary treats and paperback romances she escapes to each night…. Until she finds her closet harboring Della Lee Baker, a local waitress who is one part nemesis—and two parts fairy godmother. With Della Lee’s tough love, Josey’s narrow existence quickly expands. She even bonds with Chloe Finley, a young woman who is hounded by books that inexplicably appear when she needs them—and who has a close connection to Josey’s longtime crush. Soon Josey is living in a world where the color red has startling powers, and passion can make eggs fry in their cartons. And that’s just for starters." 

**The Oatmeal
Never have I enjoyed the taste or texture of oatmeal as a food, but this website with a name and purpose similar to the satirical publishing The Onion, is overflowing with humorous comics and short articles to read for pleasure. From "Ten Reasons to Avoid Talking on the Phone" to "How Twilight Works" to "The 9 Types of Crappy Handshakes," these short, creative pieces are funny and oh-so-true. If you don't L-O-L at one, you're sure to at least crack a smile on others. A bonus are the helpful guides to commonly misspelled words, usages of punctuation, etc. that I hope will somehow find their way to all illiterate idiots in their 20s and 30s who still can't tell the difference between their and they're. If you know people like this, send them links to these How To's! (
How to Use An Apostrophe, for example)

**Mash ups/Collaborations
I'm going through a phase of music where I really like collaborations and mash-ups done with either similar sounding artists, or completely opposites that somehow mesh well when put together. There are a lot of them circulating around that aren't very good, you just have to look till you find the good ones. For a taste of soft alternative rock, try the one with Coldplay's "The Scientist," and Sum 41's "Pieces." An awesome friend introduced me to Super Mash Bros. who exclusively produce albums of just mash-ups, such as All About the Scrillions, where their specialty is taking the present popular songs and combining them with classics from past decades. Also, Timbaland is pretty skilled at collaborations with artists such as Katy Perry, Chad Kroeger, Justin Timberlake, OneRepublic ... the list goes on. His and Miley Cyrus's "We Belong to the Music," is a pretty fun dance number that is easy to bounce along to. 

A side project of the free dating website OKCupid, this awesomely fantastic thing, for lack of a better word, allows you to submit pictures of yourself to be graded against others and reported back on, with results indicating "your best face!" The goal is for people to find out what photo of themselves is more appealing to certain types of people they want to attract on dating/social networking sites. Many people judge those they don't know by their appearances, like you would judge a book by its cover, and face it: everyone does. Once your report is finished, you'll get to see what types of people liked your picture the most (self proclaimed Deviants, Conservatives, Geeks, Free Spirits, etc.), who you beat out in competition, and the overall photo that got the most votes. I've been playing around with it for a little while just to experiment, and it really is the coolest and most analytical device, as long as you're ok with being judged and sometimes rejected. But they're all strangers who are voting, so it doesn't matter, right? I see it as a good chance to learn what works for you. What you thought was your most flattering photo might be what other people see as generic, unoriginal, and just not as inviting as others. Regardless of whether or not you frequent the match-maker websites, it can be useful simply to find out what makes you look your best and brightest. 

Sooooo I hope someone actually reads this post or that will all have been for nothing. Haha, but no matter, I still enjoy writing to an imaginary audience and pretending I'm making some small difference in the world. Cheers! 

Wednesday, May 19, 2010


Ouch is a word I've been saying a lot this week. First the sunburn, and now this strange pain in my foot that's been making me walk funny all day. If you read my status on facebook you know it mysteriously appeared in the middle of the night - my foot hurting, that is. I had no idea how it got there or what was actually wrong (I still don't), but I have a few leads:

a) Freddy Kreuger attacked me in my dreams last night. What other explanation is there for pain to suddenly appear while I'm sleeping? The thing is, though, that I don't remember dreaming about Freddy Kreuger at all, and I have a feeling that I definitely would. Also, he tends to leave visual marks on his victims, namely slashes across their skin from his knife-like fingers. Of these I have none.

b) Somebody made a voodoo doll of me and is messing with it. I don't know what they could've done from the inside, still, but when a random part of your body hurts and you can't explain it, the voodoo theory is totally plausible. But the real question is, who is the perpetrator?? ...

c) I pulled a muscle during my long stretch of intense (ha! yeah, right) exercise yesterday while watching the season finale of One Tree Hill, season 2. By intense exercise I mean walking on the treadmill. Yes, walking. How could one injure oneself with such detrimental consequences by simply walking?

It better not be something wrong with my flat feet because I love my converse and all my other sneakers with no arch support, and I'm not about to go adding cushion where cushion is not wanted. We'll see if tonight's rest will cure anything; if not, I won't hesitate to dig those crutches out that I just heard we have hiding in the basement (would've been helpful to know that before struggling to get to class today).

My incapacitation today has only driven me further to explore the wonders of the amazing INTERNET. How is it that I have not known about StumbleUpon all my years of self-proclaimed procrastination talents? It must be fairly new, but I don't know how I ever wasted so much time before - now with this beaut of a website, the possibilities are endless. I find the coolest things, I swear, I feel like just blogging about the treasures I find. Which I may have to do for one or two posts. For example, tonight I stumbled upon a poetry website, hellopoetry.com, that will randomly give you poetry to read, by famous classic authors, and by those of us plebeians that submit our own. I sometimes fall in love with whole poems, sometimes just pieces of poems, but I thought I'd share this one that particularly struck my fancy. Make of it what you will.

To His Mistress Objecting To Him Neither Toying Nor Talking
by Robert Herrick (1648 ?)

You say I love not, ‘cause I do not play
Still with your curls, and kiss the time away.
You blame me, too, because I can’t devise
Some sport to please those babies in your eyes;—
By love’s religion, I must here confess it,
The most I love, when I the least express it.
Small griefs find tongues; full casks are never found
To give, if any, yet but little sound.
Deep waters noiseless are; and this we know,
That chiding streams betray small depth below.
So when love speechless is, she doth express
A depth in love, and that depth bottomless.
Now since my love is tongueless, know me such,
Who speak but little, ‘cause I love so much.

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Project Tan: Entry 1

Every summer for as long as I can remember, my ultimate goal has been to develop some sort of color on my otherwise ivory skin. Don’t ask me why it’s so important, but I purposely let myself burn every time, as I’ve learned there is no other way for me, personally, to tan. It’s not healthy and I’ll probably end up with skin cancer later, but I am determined to find the trick to tanning. Lotions do not work on me, I either end up all streaky or orange, or both, none of which are the desired effect.

So this summer I’m documenting my time spent in the sun as a sort of experiment to see what works and what doesn’t. Hopefully at the end I’ll know and be able to share the secrets for all of those gingers and their relatives who have red hair or not, but still somehow acquired the gene for morphing into lobsters in the sun.

May 16, 2010

Today we took the new boat (!) out for a few hours. To start out, I had some residual burn on my arms from yesterday’s soccer game in a small splotch. While in the sun, I think I waited about 40-45 minutes before putting on sunscreen, then I used a light layer of SPF 8 on my arms and shoulders and basically everywhere exposed. After about an hour and a half I put some 35 on my face and arms because it was starting to hurt and I didn’t want the burn already there to get worse. I was too late, however, since half an hour later as we pulled the boat in I started to discover I really did get some color.

Now, sitting in my home, I can now say this is a legitimate sunburn I possess on my arms, shoulders, neck, and chest, not just one that will go away in two days’ time. Right away I applied aloe lotion when I got home and I haven’t changed yet so it’s not so painful but I’m expecting showers to be killer, and even carrying my purse on my shoulder is going to make me wince. Now, you must understand I’m not complaining, since multiple times I was told to put on sunscreen, and I brushed it off. I don’t regret it either, because seriously, there is no other way to tan. Once this peels I’ll be good to go and spend some more time in the sun with light sunscreen and it will hopefully build after that. Or at least that’s what I want to happen. Again, this is an experiment, so we’ll see how it all pans out.

For documentation I’m uploading a picture detailing the severity of the pink I’ve acquired on our outing today. Which, by the way, was fun, and we’re all happy with the boat and its roominess. Note: Despite my fears, I narrowly escaped being plagued with an aviator tan. I don’t think I took my sunglasses off for even 5 minutes, so I consider myself pretty lucky. 


Wednesday, May 12, 2010


A list of stupid things I've learned NOT to do, over
the years of my adolescence. It will continue to grow, I'm sure.

  • Don't park on the end of an aisle in the parking lot right outside the last spot because universities give you tickets for that, even if you're following somebody else who did it first.
  • Don't put mashed bananas in your hair. Just because one deep conditioning recipe on the internet tells you to, it doesn’t mean it’s a good idea.
  • Even if you tell your family you're going to be downstairs watching a movie, tape a reminder to the door so that they don't forget and lock you down there overnight. On a school night, no less. Just in case, though, keep your phone handy so if it does happen, you can use the alarm to wake you up in the morning.
  • Don’t throw your iPod in the trash. DO secure your phone in a good, tight pocket when riding the Wicked at Lagoon, or any coaster for that matter, so it doesn’t fall OUT.
  • When you’re talking to a cute stranger guy about the concert you’re going to that Friday night and he says oh yeah they play X song, right? don’t say ‘mmm I don’t think so’ just because you’ve never heard the song, ESPECIALLY when it’s a band that you already know you’re not an expert on. You will end up sounding stupid and the person will go home and look it up and confirm that he was right and you were wrong and he will have concluded that you do not know your music! And that you don’t deserve to be going to the concert. And if he sees you again he won’t flirt with you cuz you’ve already proven you’re retarded.
  • Don’t wear converse when it’s pouring rain outside. They’re obviously not waterproof.
  • If you’re picking up seashells on the beach in Costa Rica to take home with you, leave the ones with slimy creatures inside. Or else boil them right when you get home and then they might come out easier than if you wait 5 months. Generally speaking, you should clean them ASAP anyway so they don’t stink up whatever container you’re keeping them in (hopefully not a cute make up bag that you like).
  • Never mow the lawn with a low-cut shirt because I guarantee grass WILL go down it and WILL get stuck. Also, don't wear loose shorts cuz it can fly up in there too. That may have been TMI but I don’t care. This is good advice to follow, if you’re a girl.
  • Last but not least, don't jump into the lake with your sunglasses on. They will fall off and sink.
  • Added 7/2/2010: Don't go outside for a long period of time and wear rolled up jeans without using sunscreen because you'll get the stupidest burn/tan line ever and you'll be kicking yourself for the rest of the summer. 
  • Added 7/31/2010: List of lessons learned kayaking here
  • Added 8/8/2010: This was learned earlier this summer. When microwaving popcorn in the microwave OVEN, do not elevate the bag on a plastic container or it will melt through and end up popping on the other side. Bag and container will be ruined.
  • Added 2/23/11: Seriously, never forget to zip up your pants. I'm in shock that I'm 19 and it can still happen. 
  • Added 3/7/11: Don't keep sitting at the same computer every class period after you know it won't access the internet site you need to follow along on, and you can't read the numbers on the board because they are too small. 
  • Added 4/11/11: When you're going shopping at the mall before you deposit a paycheck in the bank, be sure to actually put it in your wallet instead of the back pocket of those tight skinny jeans where it can easily creep its way out and onto the floor without your noticing. Because otherwise you'll get an unhappy call from your mom who got a call from the dress store looking for you who found your name in the phone book because they're so nice and forgiving. 

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Band Secrets ♫ Paramore in SLC

Mothers Are the Best should be the title for THIS post instead of the last one, because if it weren't for my spontaneous radio-station calling mother, I would have never gotten free tickets to the Paramore concert ON MY BIRTHDAY! How lucky that she randomly called in for a band she didn't even know and it turned out to be a band I quite enjoy? Thanks, mom!

So yeah, that's what I did last night, with my good friend Keels who nobly ditched class to come party with me instead, and on such last minute, too. Concerts are always awesome, and even though I only knew about half of the main band's music and even less of the others', we still had a rockin' time. That lead singer Hayley is one firecracker, that's for sure. I am always amazed at how people these days bounce around stage the whole time, banging their heads and doing the invisible jump rope, and still have the lungs to sing! My theory is that one of the sneak reasons bands like to get the crowd so pumped up and singing the words themselves is so that if the singer has to catch his/her breath, he/she can do so without letting go of the song, because when the audience of thousands of people are singing too, you won't even be able to tell when it happens.

Another thing I've caught onto is how bands always say they love the city they're touring in even if they really don't, just because it makes you feel special and happy. I want to say really? You love Salt Lake City? What is there to love about Utah when you've been touring in so many other big, REAL cities? When Boys Like Girls came in the fall/winter of whatever it year it was ('07?), they said we were their greatest crowd yet and they'd definitely be coming back in the spring. I have a feeling they were just telling us what we wanted to hear because a) they didn't come back in the spring, and b) how easy is it to say those words to all small-ish towns that want to feel like they have significance in the music industry? Again, this is just a theory, but I wouldn't be surprised if it were just one of those things that all bands catch onto in order to generate more hype in the fans.

And now for a sampling of the pictures taken with my awesome camera! from the concert last night. Seriously, that thing can zoom like no other.

In Chronological Order: Fun, Relient K, Paramore

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Mothers Are the Best

Today my family celebrated Mother's Day by going to the Gateway in Salt Lake to hang out and do fun things. We saw Iron Man 2, walked around and shopped for a little, and ate a plentiful dinner at Thaiphoon.

While Iron Man 2 couldn't quite live up to the it's predecessor, one of my favorite movies of all time, it was still entertaining. Tony Stark is one of my favorite characters from any movie, and even though his buddy Rhodes was replaced by actor Don Cheadle, their friendly banter was one of the best aspects of the movie. I thought it wouldn't be the same as the chemistry between Robert Downey Jr. and Terrence Howard in the first movie, but they did a pretty good job of pulling it off. I'm glad Stark is still egotistical as ever, and Mickey Rourke made a reeeally good villain as Ivan Vanko. And I just LOVE all the fancy technology Iron Man decks out his home with; if anything improves as the number of sequels increases, that is definitely one of them. I hope some day in the future, we too will be able to play with virtual maps, blueprints, and everything computerized just by swiping our hands this way and that through the air that fills our rooms.

If you haven't ever been to Thaiphoon, I'm telling you now it is a good restaurant. We had tons of food on the table, from pork fried rice to calamari to spring rolls to honey walnut chicken ... Everything was tasty and the portions were huge so we pretty much paid for dinner for the next two nights as well, a la reheating in le microwave. We planned on baking a banana cake as is tradition for the combined Mother's Day & my birthday that is tomorrow (!), but since I haven't smelled anything of the sort wafting from the oven in the last few hours, I'm thinking we're holding off on that for today. But that's ok because I'm still stuffed, and we got a free Mother's Day volcano dessert thingy at Thaiphoon.

To top the day off I got to open my presents (mom got hers in the morning), which included some clothes I knew I was getting, the new John Mayer cd, and some loooovely DKNY perfume among other things. None of which could top the gift of seeing the happines on my mom's face upon receiving the two things I spent some time and effort on this year for her. However, the big winner of the night for me was a new ipod classic, which I'm so thankful for because I had almost run out of room on the nano, and the screen was completely shattered anyway. SO here's to now never running out of storage space for my music, and having one more valuable and fragile item I have to worry about dropping and scratching all the time! I plan on investing in some type of shield to protect it from my inevitable clumsy antics. Speaking of which, I may be undertaking an investigation of the myriad of broken sunglasses I still hoard in hopes of fixing one day. Expect a blog post about it sometime in the future.

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Who are you, Audience?

Apparently at the end of the year it's possible to get your blog published as a book just for you to keep a physical record of your writings, kind of like a scrapbook, with all the pictures and stuff. It got me thinking, if I were to do that at the end of 2010, what kinds of things should I write that are worth putting into print? The important parts of life, like relationships, jobs, etc, are really what matter, but aren't something I'm about to go ranting off about on my blog for other people to read. I'm pretty open with my feelings but I'm not going to write a book about the heartbreak and pain from the last guy who dumped me, or why I hate my job and want to quit. Hypothetically. Some things are just better left unsaid, especially since any stranger can Stumble Upon my blog. Thus, I'm stuck wondering if I should deliberately TRY to make this mainly a collection of memories, with said publishing ending in mind, or post whatever I feel like and see what happens?

The other dilemma here I'm facing after experimenting for a few weeks is who I'm writing to, or for. I knew this was going to be something to think about, which is why I held off on starting this blog for a while. One of the first tasks a writer does is establish the audience for their piece. Who are you writing to? What kind of tone do you wish to convey to these people? I still haven't come to a conclusion about who my audience is and if I want to provide material that other people, friends, strangers, can find useful, or if I just want to talk about my feeeelings and what I'm doing with my days. For now I'm just happy to be writing at all, and I guess I'll just keeping playing with it and see how I feel.

I do have something that I wanted to share, though, from a recently acquired "Daily Book of Positive Quotations." I am always looking for meaningful and inspirational quotes, so I thought I'd just flip through it, but when I went to today's date, I really liked the one I found. The quote was this:

"Both tears and sweat are salty, but they render a different result. Tears will get you sympathy; sweat will get you change." - Jesse Jackson

Now, if you're reading, go ahead and take some time to contemplate that.

Done? OK, good. I used to be one who complained a lot, but reflecting back on the last few years of my life, I think I've gotten a lot better. However, there are definitely areas of my life that I brood over when I should be taking action to fix instead, i.e. grades. Yes, some classes are legitimately hard, but some classes also just require more effort, and I realize I can't speak until I've given 100%. This quote applies to me and others out there, telling us we should just learn to suck it up and stop complaining, because we're better than that and the best method of getting the change we want is by working for it ourselves. Next time I feel like crying when something gets hard, I'll think of this quote and hopefully change my mindset.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Baba Yetu

This is thee coolest thing ever. Especially since the translation of this song is a close version of the Our Father in Swahili. Wait for the whole thing to load before watching. 

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Chicken & Shrimp Paella!

Tonight I decided to experiment and cook dinner for my family with the help of my awesome mom. I sort of combined/modified two recipes and came up with my own and thought I'd write down the rough version, so here goes:

For about 6-ish servings:

  • 3 - 4 boneless, skinless chicken breasts
  • cooked shrimp - however much you want
  • 1 bag of authentic spanish Saffron Yellow Rice (10 oz)
  • 1 red bell pepper
  • 1/4 cup chopped onion
  • 1 can diced tomatoes (14.5 oz)
  • 1 roll of beef chorizo sausage
  • 1 cup frozen peas
  • 1 spoonful of crushed garlic (like in the store-bought jars)
  • 1 tsp. paprika
Cook anywhere from half to the whole thing of chorizo in a skillet like ground beef so it gets all mushy, then set aside. Start cooking the rice according to the package directions (should be about 20 minutes). Chop up the onion and most of the bell pepper into similar sized pieces small pieces. 

Cut up the chicken breasts into bite-size or a little larger pieces, then season with salt and pepper. Cook in a small amount of oil in the bottom of a large pot. When done, remove the chicken and set aside. 

Place the onions, peppers, canned tomatoes, garlic, and paprika in the pot, stir and simmer for a few minutes. When the rice is almost done, add it to the pot and stir in the chicken, chorizo, cooked shrimp, and peas as well. Let sit for a few minutes until ready to serve. 

A few notes: More chorizo = more flavor. It's easier to eat if the shrimp do not have tails. Saffron yellow rice is important to get those good flavors in there. Annnd if you like more rice than meat, you might want more than one package. And you can vary the amount of veggies and stuff you want, too. 

* Blog Update: There's this cool new thing at the bottom of the page where you paint masterpieces by waving your mouse around and clicking to change the colors. It's fun to play with.

Saturday, May 1, 2010

Stupid Men & Miche Bags

First of all, if you haven’t noticed, I’ve updated my blog and added a page called List of Lists, accessible by a link at the tippy top of this page by the word Home. I’ll add more to it as time goes on, but that’s just a start for now. I’m also thinking of doing away with the music player on the bottom because it’s starting to annoy me. It’s distracting and starts over a new song every time you click on something else. Is this opinion shared by others or does it even matter?

Now I would like to express my frustration at the male subcategory of the homosapien species. I know it’s not a guy’s fault if you like him and he doesn’t like you back, but it causes so much frustration! Guys suck! It IS rather dumb on their part, though, if they flirt with you and smile at you with those EYES that say "you’re special and I only share this smile with you,” but then they don’t do anything about it, and go off flirting and taking their breaks with other chicks and probably giving them the same smile too! Don’t do that if you want to craze a young woman into lesbianism. Just kidding, that’s really extreme. Of course women are also capable of causing men the same torture, so let’s just all be mindful of whose hearts we’re playing with, shall we?

Thursday night I attended a cooking show with my good friend JO! We’re going to try getting together once a week or so to cook a meal together at her new house that is so cute. Anyway, one of the vendor booths at the show was this awesome company called Miche Bags that has come up with the best invention since the electric blanket (which I cherish, btw).

Their product is a purse/bag that has interchangeable outer shells that snap onto the base, structured insert so you can have many different purses that are all actually the same thing! They are designer quality with lots of cute styles and even a create-your-own option. Looking at them on display, you wouldn’t even be able to tell they’re all the same purse on the inside because the shells are so different! I definitely am considering this as a birthday investment. Click on this LINK to be taken to their website, so you can check out this nifty item.

I could talk about more stuff but since I don’t want my posts to be too long, I’ll stop here. Have a good day!