Wednesday, March 31, 2010


Wednesday, Chris and I went to see Michael Bublé .  We had meant it to be a break between our crazy New Years in Layton, Utah, and our crazy summer trip to visit cousins up in Silverdale, Washington.  Little did we know we'd also slip in a crazy whirl wind trip to Chicago, too. (That's in only three more weeks, so more on that VERY soon).  Meanwhile, the Crazy Love Michael Bublé concert. Sigh.  Michael, I think I'm in love!  :)

I thought I'd blog about a few of my favorite moments. The opening act was this super cool group called Natural 7.  They are an a cappella group with a style they call "Vocal Play" that makes all the music sounds vocally: guitar, clarinet, scratching, trumpet, electric guitar, harmonica, bass guitar, drums.  Seriously cool.  Check out this video (which I hope works!)...

They really built up the introduction to Bublé and by the time he took the stage the whole auditorium was... well... crazy :)  It was such an awesome show!  He's a little bit of a nerd and had did a funny little dance when the music moved him, but we had so much fun.  He really is quite charming and just a delight. 

I already mentioned the crazy crowd. Well, they set up a temporary stage a little further back on the floor and he walked through the crowd and then sang an acoustic version of "Home."  I love that song anyway, but at the end on the big screen, they put a picture of something quintissential Salt Lake City: the Salt Lake Temple.  I don't know how many in West Jordan appreciated that, but I loved it. Talk about going home!

I think Michael Bublé sang for an hour and a half.  Chris and I sang along to many of our favorite songs.  He sang my favorite song, "Feeling Good" as part of his encore. And, honestly, I think he saved the best for last.  I think I sang that song and every word of it at the top of my lungs :).  It was such a FUN concert.  He ended the night by saying that he wouldn't be able to do what he does without the support of his fans, so he sang us "Song For You."  On the very last chorus, he stood center stage without his band, set aside his mike, and just sang to the crowd.  It was a beautiful moment.

I've been so many places in my life and time
I've sung a lot of songs, I've made some bad rhyme
I've acted out my life in stages with ten thousand people watching
But we're alone now and I'm singing this song for you
I know your image of me is what I hope to be, I've treated you unkindly
But girl can't you see, there's no one more important to me
So darling can't you please see through me, 'cause we're alone now
And I'm singing my song for you, you taught me precious secrets
The truth with holding nothing, you came out in front
And I was hiding, oh, but now I'm so much better,
So if my words don't come together, listen to the melody
'Cause my love is in there hiding
I love you in a place where there is no space or time, I love you for my life
You are a friend of mine, and when my life is over
Remember, remember, remember when we were together
And we are alone now, and I was singing this song to you
We were alone, and I was singing, yeah singing
We were alone, and I was singing this song for you
Singing my song, I'm singing my song for you

Thursday, March 25, 2010

Daily Pleasures

I had a friend post a fabulous article entitled "5 Habits of Happy People."  It explains that getting a "make over" can mean more than losing weight or cleaning out your closet, but it can also mean to change your prespective to a positive one.  "While unhappy people, to paraphrase Tolstoy, might be dysfunctional in 10,000 different ways, upbeat folks have some habits in common."  Those habits are to Reach Out, Be Thankful, Live Your Passions, Make Do, and Enjoy Simple pleasures.  Isn't that the truth?!  The best things in life often aren't things and they're usually free.  Since one of the key tenets of happiness is being able to savor small pleasures, here's my list of 101 Pleasures...

  1. coloring (yes, grown-ups can do it, too)
  2. temple trips
  3. a check on my To Do list
  4. freshly cut grass
  5. s’mores
  6. a home cooked meal (thanks, Mom!)
  7. Dad’s omelets on Saturday morning
  8. James Taylor
  9. a smile from a stranger
  10. afternoon naps
  11. an email from Liang
  12. red toe nails
  13. Bones
  14. art museums
  15. a great hair day
  16. babysitting the Larsen girls
  17. birds singing in the trees
  18. bright blue skies
  19. cheesy, uplifting musicals
  20. watching Daniel do Bushi Ban karate
  21. Christmas lights bright against a night sky
  22. church steeples
  23. Alex-isms (he says the FUNNIEST things!)
  24. a great book
  25. fresh, fragrant sheets
  26. cloud shadows racing across the mountains
  27. cousins
  28. eating with chopsticks
  29. daddy hugs
  30. eyelashes on a sleeping child’s cheeks
  31. fair food
  32. finding forgotten dollars in your pocket
  33. finding the perfect outfit...on sale
  34. a sincere compliment
  35. fluffy towels
  36. fountain soda
  37. painting a room
  38. fresh bread and butter
  39. Girl Scout Cookies
  40. great stories
  41. blogging
  42. Friday nights
  43. green lights all the way home
  44. Beatles
  45. a laugh out loud surprise
  46. happy endings...even if they're fictional
  47. Christmas Eve program
  48. hot chocolate
  49. inspiring blogs
  50. lunch with old roommates
  51. ice-cream cones
  52. movie theater popcorn
  53. a moving melody
  54. my nerd shows (AKA the Sci-Fi Channel)
  55. listening to Ian read
  56. new destinations
  57. old friends...
  58. friends
  59. old photographs
  60. oreos and milk
  61. pay day
  62. playing hookey
  63. a stylish haircut by Tricia
  64. massages
  65. a warm wind on my face
  66. concerts with Chris
  67. staying in my pajamas all day
  68. a stamp in my passport
  69. Pride and Prejudice
  70. scratching my brother’s back through Sacrament meeting
  71. Project Runway
  72. reading a child a bedtime story
  73. chocolate
  74. when my students realize they ARE smart
  75. walks with nephews, nieces, and my camera
  76. really great advice
  77. Josh’s giggle
  78. saying thank you
  79. singing along to the radio and knowing all the words
  80. sky-blue-pink sunsets
  81. sleeping in
  82. Loriel’s desserts
  83. snuggling with my brown and white quilt
  84. soft pjs
  85. Christmas music
  86. sunshine
  87. Text Twist
  88. office supplies
  89. my pearls
  90. swimming on a hot day
  91. the first flowers of spring
  92. Indiana Jones
  93. the perfect taco
  94. Facebook games with Lisa
  95. the library
  96. using your favorite dishes
  97. singing with the choir
  98. watching a fire crackle
  99. my marked up scriptures
  100. planting flowers
  101. forever families

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Jury Duty

YESTERDAY, I got a text message from Chris letting me know she found a Jury Summons in the very, very back of the mailbox for a trial for TODAY.  Sure am glad she checks the mail better than I do!  So, I arranged for the morning off at work and showed up bright and early at the courthouse this morning. Parking was something of a nightmare, but I got checked in and had a seat on my very hard wooden chair. Honestly, I was a little conflicted.  I work at a law firm, so it COULD be kind of interesting to see a different perspective of the legal system and to observe a trial.  I'd even get paid for it! Ten dollars a day! :)  On the other hand, sitting through a criminal case and missing the next three days of work WOULD be as hard as my wooden chair. 

We watched the orientation video. Fascinating stuff (...not!).  We rise for the Judge and do roll call.  Just as the Judge was beginning to welcome us and explain our responsibilities, the defense attorney requests private council. So, they leave and come back ten minutes later. We rise for the Judge, and he announces the defendant has decided to plead guilty and dismisses us.  sigh.  Like he couldn't have decided that yesterday?! 

On the bright side, I get out of my inner conflict, out of my hard chair, and now I'm richer by Five Dollars and all in the name of civic duty!

Saturday, March 20, 2010

General Conference Fairy

General Conference is only two weeks away, and that means it's time for all you General Conference Fairies to start preparation for the weekend.  Some of my best booklet material comes from:
I came across this post about a challenge for adults to prepare for General Conference. They say,
Challenge: take your worries and your questions and write them down. As you watch conference, your questions will be answered. ONE BY ONE.

Such a brilliant idea! In fact, I feel a little sheepish that I've never tried it before. So, what are your favorite General Conference activities?

Something... Sweet

This Friday, I got to go babysit the little family that we sit with at church. They let me come babysit at their house about once a month when Bishop and Marcie go to the temple together.  I usually take over a snack (popcorn or whoppers or something), a couple of cartoon movies to pick from to watch, some activity pages and color pages, and a little preschool craft (this time I brought some patterned paper scraps, which  we could cut into four hearts and a stem to make a four leaf clover... real simple stuff). They go to bed about 7:30 p.m. so that doesn't give me a lot of time to fit it all in.  It's more of my bag of tricks to keep them busy before bedtime, and so that I'm the FUN babysitter :).  One of the games we played tonight was "Something".  It's similar to "I Spy" but instead we take pictures of Something: Something Soft, Something Silky, Something Shiny, Something Silly, Something Small, Something Smooth, Something Special, etc.  I like the alliteration, but we also took pictures of Something Pink and Something Pretty (hellluuu? Three girls!).  I thought I'd share a few of their best shots.  All in all I thought tonight was altogether Something... Sweet.

Monday, March 15, 2010

Sunday a day of rest?

Sundays can be so crazy. I have to remind myself that Sundays are a day of rest from worldly concerns, but not necessarily a day for a nap although I try really hard to squeeze those in, too.

On Thursday, Brother Fife called to ask if I would give a talk for THIS Sunday. The funny thing is that I almost prefer the late invitation rather than have two weeks warning because I get to live blissfully ignorant of my impending nervousness :). Of course, I still saved preparation until Saturday night because procrastination is the best kind of preparation [insert eye roll and forehead slap here]. Sometimes I'm my own worst enemy. My talk was on the Great Apostasy (after Christ and all of his apostles were killed or removed from the earth), and it was surprisingly hard to research. Most conference talks I read dealt with the Apostasy for a paragraph, and then the rest of the talk was dedicated to the Restoration of the gospel and the priesthood. I guess it makes sense. I think it is kind of like when we talk about the crucifixion, we also always teach about the resurrection; one can't go without the other. But it still makes it kind of hard to prepare a talk about the apostasy :). I found some wonderful talks: one by Elder M. Russell Ballard and the other by Elder Richard G. Scott. Elder Scott explained that apostasy can also be an individual state. His general conference address really moved me. At the beginning he siad that because we're spiritual children of a divine Father in Heaven then we seek spiritual guidance. I love that! Of course, we would! In times of trouble and confusion we turn to our Creator. And because he is our Father, he nourishes us through the light of Christ, the Holy Ghost, scriptures, priesthood, prayers, the atonement and repentance, commandments and covenants, and prophets. But my favorite line was from Elder Ballard's talk. He said, "And how do you [gain] a testimony? Well, there’s no new technology for that, nor will there ever be. You cannot do a Google search to gain a testimony. You can’t text message faith. You gain a vibrant, life-changing testimony today the same way it has always been done. The process hasn’t been changed. It comes through desire, study, prayer, obedience, and service. That is why the teachings of prophets and apostles, past and present, are as relevant to your life today as they ever have been." Some really great stuff in those talks, and I never ceased to be amazed how much I learn and I am blessed as I serve in the Church! I had a funny moment during the middle of my talk. Not a funny, ha ha ha moment isn't Cindy clever, but a moment where I realized I had been up there awhile and hadn't looked up from my notes even once. So, I did quick glance, smiled, and remembered to unlock my knees :).

Crazy. Crazy. But, I had been running since I first woke up. Early Sunday morning, Chris poked her head into my room and asked me if I had changed my clock for Daylight Savings. No!, I hadn't. I thought I had an hour and a half before church, but actually only a half an hour to get dressed and review my notes and pack for the day. Oh yeah, I had a Sunday School lesson for my Family History class. It's only a seven week course, and yesterday we started a new session. I've had a few weeks off so I needed to gather together the new roll sheet, and my scriptures and manual, and the students' manuals, and the DVD. Which is when I remember the library lost the remote to the DVD player, and I hope they've replaced it by now.

Of course, this is in addition to my talk. And choir. Did I mention choir yet? I love choir, though. It's a place where I get to hang out with friendly people, we joke, we make beautiful music, and everyone accepts you no matter how well you sing. Dad came and picked me up and we actually got there on time. I'm pretty sure it was a fluke and never to be repeated again :).

Full day. I guess, Sundays help me be excited for Monday and its divorces, wills, sale agreements, collections, and estates! Hope you had a restful Sunday too :).

Wednesday, March 3, 2010


A little back story...A couple of months ago I was feeling frustrated at work with namely my ability, or lack thereof, to travel very much or very far, opportunities to develop a retirement plan, and feelings of self-efficacy.  I do realize that in this economy I should just be grateful for a job that pays the bills even if it's not enough to work towards anything more or something greater.  However, I made some good goals to help me lift where I stand: Look for and develop side jobs, Develop a rigorous savings plan, Dedicate yourself to the work, Celebrate the achievements, and Enjoy a good moment everyday (count blessings).  Part of my goal to earn some extra money was to check back on a job that I had heard about for a GED teacher. Well, I checked back, and they hired me!  I teach a GED class for South Central Community Action Partnership (or SCCAP) on Wednesday nights as well as administering the standardized test to each student before they began classes. Then it expanded to open the building for some other classes they are offering.
Tuesday is the Parenting Class. It's an interesting class because it's for families going through Drug Court, and they bring their kids. They serve a nice dinner (last time was ham, baked potato, salad and a roll with juice). Then they split up into three groups: parents, teens, and little kids, and they each have a class. Then there's clean up and lock up and I finally get home at 8:00 pm.

Wednesdays are my GED tutoring class.  I have eight students signed up and we're working on getting at least three here every week.  I tell my students that I studied English in college, so we will work on Language Arts together, and I'll have to be careful not to spend all of my time talking about English :). Then I have workbooks for math.  Doesn't that sound fun?  Although, I'm not sure what's worse: workbooks or me droning on about Grammar!