Tuesday, September 30, 2008

thoughts on kidlessness

It's been nearly a month that I've been kidless six hours per day. It's taking some getting used to.

I had all these plans. I was going to walk everywhere. I have been walking more, but not to the grocery store and library as I'd planned. I still take my car.

I was going to start writing my book. I have been working on this, but not like I thought I would. Not hours per day or anything.

I was going to practice violin regularly. I've gotten it out a few times and played some easy things I don't sound hideous on. But I haven't even attempted scales.

I was going to read important, non-fiction books to make me smarter and wiser. So much for that.

I was going to update my wardrobe. It currently consists of two pairs of jeans, some yoga pants, and a few faded t-shirts. I'm in big trouble now that cold weather approaches. But the thought of going to the mall seems so unappealing. Was I not meant to look smart and chic?

I was going to organize my closets, cupboards, and drawers. OK, that is so not true. I told myself and other people that but it was a lie. I never really meant to do that, of course.

So what have I been doing? Good question.

I've been enjoying the quiet. I've loved being alone. I have always loved being alone. I like people, but in moderation. Sometimes I wander from room to room, reveling in the fact that no one's here. I could be a happy hermit.

I don't want to pass my days this way. I want to do something real. I want to embrace life. I want to finally do all the things I've been saving up for this season of my life.

I have a friend who says she never sleeps much, especially in the summer. She says this is because there is so much she wants to do. So many books to read, people to watch, things to learn... She doesn't want to waste any time sleeping when she could be out there living life. I think that is so admirable! I want to be that way.

But what did I do this morning after my walk? I fell asleep.

friends in solo dresses




Here is Lidia with Sonja, one of the four Sisters of Perpetual Cuteness.

Friday, September 26, 2008

hi ya'll


Bernie is home sick today. We're probably having our last very warm day of the year. But who knows, what with global warming.


I have been preparing a Sunday school lesson (The Book of Mormon is awesome!), exercising (I've lost two whopping pounds!), practicing violin (I suck!), and reading A Tree Grows in Brooklyn (I adore this book!) for our next book group discussion. So you see, I'm living a most exclamatory life. Remember how I used to do SMART habits? I think I'm going to start doing that again. It was helpful. So every week or so I'll be posting about my goals again.


Lidia has an Irish dance competition tomorrow. I hope it goes better than the last one she went to here in the Twin Cities. At that one she forgot to start dancing when she was supposed to on the light jig, messed up hornpipe, bounced her wig off doing the slip jig, and fell off the stage doing the reel! (Her reel was so good in spite of the tumble, she did still manage a first place.)

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

your mother's feminism

I saw the link to this excellent (and brief) analysis of Betty Friedan's "The Feminine Mystique" on Reed's blog. I agree with Sommers, especially here:

Friedan made a fatal mistake that undermined her book's appeal at the time and permanently weakened the movement it helped create. She not only attacked a postwar culture that aggressively consigned women to the domestic sphere, but she attacked the sphere itself — along with all the women who chose to live there.

Friedan described herself as "Diogenes with his lamp," going from suburb to suburb in search of a mentally sound housewife. (None could be found, she concluded.) The job of housewife, in her estimation, was intrinsically unworthy and undignified, an occupation best suited to "feeble-minded girls." She called the suburban home a "comfortable concentration camp" where women suffer a "slow death of mind and spirit." Like the inmates of the camps, she said, American suburban housewives had become "walking corpses."

This sweeping relegation of housewives to the loony bin is so absurd it makes me laugh in disbelief that someone would say such a thing. Though I may be completely nuts, I know other at-home mothers who are perfectly sane.

Sunday, September 21, 2008

lulu and bernie performance


They did their own costuming and choreography. Mum (Nana) did the photo shoot with her fancy pants camera. Ave, Mum, and I look at these photos over and over. See more here.

dream #3

I don't remember as many atmospheric details of this dream. We were vacationing in southern Mexico for a long time. I think we had rented a little house there. It was time for us to go back to the States, but there was this baby. I don't remember how the baby turned up, but we had this orphaned baby in our house. It was a tiny little girl who at first I thought was about five months old. We were taking care of her but it was time for us to leave. I kept asking everyone what we should do with this baby. Everyone (including J!) told me to just leave it in the house and someone would find it and take care of it. I said I would absolutely not leave it, and so the baby ended up driving back to the States with us. We intended to find an adoptive family for her.

The baby had very dark skin and Mexican Indian features, but wispy, light brown hair. As I interacted with her more, I soon realized she was not around five months old, but maybe closer to two. She started walking and then running, even though she was a little bitty thing. She started talking. I also realized that I could never hand her over to another family and that I would be adopting her. When I told J, he rolled his eyes. (This is hilarious if you know how much the real-life J adores children and would probably have a dozen if I were game.)

Saturday, September 20, 2008

rally



Yesterday I went to the McCain/Palin rally in Blaine. I am still an undecided voter, completely party free! But I thought it would be fun to go to a rally and see McCain and Palin in person, and it was. I was too far back to see much--turns out there were 13,000 people there. But I did get these photos of Palin and McCain speaking. Can you see them? Hint: Palin is wearing turquoise and McCain, white.
The people watching was excellent. Quite a diversity of types of people, if not colors. :-)
But I think there may be something wrong with me. Why can't I get as emotionally invested in this race as so many other people seem to be? I've read so many friends' rants/vents on this. They seem to be so taken up with who says what about whom, the distortion of facts, the lack of experience of so-and-so, the elitism of so-and-so. Gosh, you would think they were being personally attacked rather than their candidate. I don't support any candidate at this point, but even if I did, I can't imagine getting that upset or vitriolic toward the candidate I don't support. Am I blind, or something? Unfeeling? Or maybe just cynical? I mean, to me, negative ad campaigns, cutting down your opponent, etc., is politics. That's how it's always been. I truly wish that were not the case, but here is no way I intend to get worked up about it.
I am researching the candidates and their issues and it's been a great learning experience. Watching how people react to this race has also been interesting and insightful, if occasionally baffling.

dream #2

I went to bed the other night thinking, "My hair looks so blah. I would love to get it cut and colored at a really tony salon." And then my inner fiscal conservative said, "Calandria, you can SO NOT afford that right now. Dream on..."

For once I heeded my inner fiscal conservative.

In this dream I lived in a gritty, grey, depressed city. It had clearly been an industrial center at some point. Old factories and warehouses abounded. It had also seen better days as a home for the arts. Ornate, crumbling theaters and galleries lined one street. It was a city with lots of steeply-graded streets and alleys. Kind of like the post-WWII Vienna I saw in the film "The Third Man" the night after I had this dream.

In my dream I walked from my home, a townhouse furnished with antiques, where it seems my parents either lived with me or were visiting, to the best hair salon in the city. It was a small, dingy place with a cracked cement floor and dirty windows that looked out onto a square. I sat down and told the stylist, a rather curt man wearing a tight, black t-shirt, that I wanted it trimmed and colored. Instead of looking in the mirror, I turned my chair to look out the grimy windows to the square because there was a demonstration going on. I should have written this dream down immediately because now I don't remember what the people, several thousands, were demonstrating about, but at the time I did. I do remember that I had conflicting emotions as I watched this demonstration. I felt sympathy for the people and their cause, but I also feared them. I felt anxiety and elation.

The curt man said, "Ok!" and turned me around to look in the mirror. He had cut off almost all of my hair. It didn't look that bad, that I can recall now. The color was a very attractive chestnut, and the bangs looked better than any I've ever had. However, I was enraged. I screamed. "Whaaaat haaave you DONE!" I screeched at the stylist. "I have been growing out my hair for two years! I did not tell you to do this!" I was so mad, I was literally spitting. I started swearing. I was a sailor. The stylist started swearing and screaming back at me. After a few minutes of this I ran out the door and started running home. I was sobbing, just like in my last dream. I couldn't stop. Flows of tears coursed down my face.

I burst through the door of my townhouse and my mom was there doing some type of cleaning--maybe sweeping? She looked up at me (I was still crying) and said, "You'd probably better go to bed, don't you think?" And what I understood her to mean by that was, "You are outrageously disappointed with your haircut and are unfit for normal life right now. You'll feel better after you have a nap." I realized she was right so I went to my room, which was already dark with the blinds drawn, and lay down on my bed.

solo dress for the terribly vain or self-ironic ten-year old


Thursday, September 18, 2008

three dreams

I always mean to write down my dreams but I usually forget. I've had three strange dreams this past week and this time I'm going to record them. Here is the first.

Dream #1: I've always wished my husband (or myself, for that matter) were a little more handy around the house. J's dad is the king of all do-it-yourselfers, but J did not inherit that gene. In this dream, it was revealed to me what would happen if J were suddenly to develop a mania for home improvement. Some of you know that we bought our current home mostly because it had about a dozen beautiful trees in the front yard. And if you know that, you also know that we've had to remove, at great expense and greater heartache, all but three of those trees. In my dream I go out the front door and find J with a chainsaw in his hands. He's looking up at the trees. "That's too bad," he says.

"What?" I ask, quick, low, and wary. I do not look up.

"Well, I was trying to prune these trees, but it didn't turn out as I expected. Looks like they'll have to come down." He starts the chainsaw. rrrrrrrrrvvvvvvvvv rrrrrvvvvvvvv

I look up and see most of the branches of our trees dangling forlornly, hanging by shreds of wood. I start sobbing. I turn and run back into the house. I go into the living room/dining room and stop mid-sob. I look down at our new maple floor. It has been... refinished. The surface is rough and bumpy. The color is dark and mottled. J walks in the door.

"What..." I begin. J interrupts.

"I didn't like how the new floor turned out. I wanted it darker and shinier, so I tried to fix it."

I start sobbing again. I am crying so hard I can't even see. I'm crying like a 2-year old. I slowly melt to the floor and curl up into a fetal position. I do not stop crying.

Those are the only two projects I remember clearly, as they came at the end of the dream. I wish I could remember the other home "improvements."

What I learned from this dream: Love your husband for who he is, and do not ever, ever wish he were handier.

Wednesday, September 17, 2008

summer pastime


Georgie took up whittling this summer. With some of her babysitting money she purchased tools and a how-to book. I was impressed with the quality of this owl she carved. She has stained it since I took this photo. I'll have to post another pic later of the stained version.

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

blog list

I finally put up my updated blog roll. I tried to name the blogs so that you would know how I know these people. Because I totally wonder that when I see other folk's blog rolls. There were a few I've met through the blogosphere like Amity, Dave, Nestle, and Gabriela. But instead of labeling them "blogosphere" I tried to come up with something more precise.

Mum sent me an email saying I could post a link to her blog. Maybe I embarrassed her too much by saying she was shy. And now here I am embarrassing her again! What are daughters for? Love you, Mum!

Some of the people I label as "homeschool" are no longer homeschooling, but that is how I originally met them. That includes Athena, Mama Ava, and Karen.

I'm missing a few author blogs but I'll stick them in later.

Monday, September 15, 2008

because this is what's important


Enough about politics. Who wants to talk about the leadership of the free world when you can talk about solo dresses instead?

Both of these are pretty crummy pictures. I'm pretty sure the dress in the second photo, described as "raspberry," is not actually retina-burning. Fauna saw this dress at Nationals and she calls it "kind of a poppy red/pink" and very beautiful.

I love the style of the first because it's so simple and unique. It's kind of Irish step mod girl. I imagine the second would look very striking on Lidia with her dark hair. For many girls, this would be the case of the dress wearing the girl, but I think Lid could pull it off.

What do you think?

party-free girl

I would like to belong to the Republican party. I'd like to belong to the Democratic party. I'd love to be a, what do they call it? "Card-carrying member." Do they actually have little blue or red cards for the die-hards of those parties to put in their purses? Cute!

I would like to belong to either one of these parties for several reasons. First, just for the sense of belonging. I don't often feel like I belong anywhere. Second, because I admire people who have defined and articulate views. I have both conservative friends and liberal friends who appear to have such firm convictions. They already know what they think and it evidently lines up very nicely with one of those two political parties. That's infernally convenient! Third, because I read that people who are either very liberal or very conservative are more likely to have higher IQs than us centrist simpletons.

But I don't think I can join one of those parties. My beliefs and priorities don't seem to line up neatly or even more or less with either of those platforms.

The following notes on my views will not be especially cohesive or flowing, and will certainly be random. I'm jotting these things down so they'll stop spinning around in my head. Feel free to comment. I am always open to others' opinions. Maybe that's my problem.

values voting: I live very conservatively and yes, I think it's the best way. I think everyone would be happier if they had my values and tried to live them. If everyone would choose this way to live, I think the country would be a better place. However, I don't think it works to impose my values through government on others who do not share them. Some of you would counter that this is a ridiculous thing to say because all of our laws are based on our values. Yes, but those have to be values that a great majority of American share.

gay marriage: I don't have a problem with gay people getting married if that's what they want to do. However, I have a big problem with a health teacher, for example, telling my child that marriage is anything other than a union between a man and a woman. That would be someone else imposing their values on me and mine.

abortion: When I talk with pro-lifers, they always seem to be left with the impression that I favor abortion rights. When I talk with pro-choicers, they always think I'm opposed to abortion. Well, I am opposed to abortion. I think it's wrong. But I am not convinced that overturning Roe v. Wade would be a good idea for our country. I would certainly not make a decision on who to vote for based on this issue.

the economy, business, taxes, etc.: I'm not an economist and I don't know a lot about this, but I have an opinion based on our experience. This is the only country where my husband would ever be able to have a small business in his sector and still compete globally with much larger companies. This has always been a country of remarkable economic opportunity. This is the only country with an economy that can grow to accommodate an ever-growing population. When J talks with business associates in other countries, they always comment on this and with some envy. If businesses are too heavily taxed or restricted as they are in most other countries, the government gets the money but the citizens end up paying the price in more ways than one. More taxes means fewer jobs and fewer jobs means fewer people to tax. There has to be a healthy balance.

This from the WSJ today made me think: "Mr. Obama's moral vision presupposes that the key to individual advancement is securing a larger share of a fixed social pie from those who control it. This posture, relevant in pre-modern patronage systems, is profoundly at odds with the modern, market economy in which individuals don't have to wrest resources from others to prosper; they have opportunities to create their own."

immigration: No one seems to be mentioning this anymore, but I was in favor of the Immigration Reform Act. Evidently this make me liberal on this issue. One reason I couldn't stomach Romney.

education: We all know it's messed-up in this country. I don't know that throwing more money at under-performing schools is going to fix it. I favor school choice.

healthcare: I have been reading about this and trying to understand both candidate's plans. It looks to me like Obama's plan for a government program could potentially make my private insurance more expensive.

Saturday, September 13, 2008

dresses


Thanks for all the responses on the previous post! Lidia and I enjoyed reading those. DTV, we can totally see you in number three, although you've always looked so good in royal blue.
I corresponded a bit with the seller of dress #1 and I was going to make an offer on it. However, the seller would not agree to take the dress back and refund it if it did not fit. Many sellers do offer to take it back within three days, but some don't. I thought it was too much risk to buy the dress without having Lidia try it on. It was also priced very high and Fauna (Lidia's dance teacher who reads this blog--Hi, Fauna!-- and is helping us find a dress) says we can probably find a great dress for a lower price. We don't need anything right away. Lidia's class dress will still fit for her next competition in two weeks.
So here's what I'm trying to ignore: I am shopping for a dance costume for my daughter that could very well cost ten times more than I paid for my wedding dress. Maybe the question should not be why I'm willing to fork over so much for a dance costume, but rather, why I paid so little for my wedding dress.
That would be because I didn't have any money. I was a full-time student and not working. It was my perception at the time that my parents weren't thrilled at my decision to get married when I did, so I felt embarrassed asking them for a lot of money for a dress. Also, to make a full confession, I considered it unromantic and bourgeoisie to spend much time and money on a wedding dress.
I found out that my roommate's mother-in-law was making her dress. (Yes, my roommate was engaged too. Not a strange coincidence at BYU.) She told me that this woman had made many wedding dresses and would probably make mine too. The woman agreed to make it, and for a song. There were a few things that didn't turn out quite right, like I would have preferred both the skirt and sleeves a big longer. However, especially in hindsight, I got a really good deal on that dress.
Are you admiring my demure little bouquet? That's okay. You can ask. It's because a few days before my wedding someone asked if I'd ordered the flowers. What? Flowers? I called a florist and said, "I need a bridal bouquet for my wedding." She listed all the white flowers available and asked which I wanted. "Those all sound good to me," I said. "But which do you want for your bouquet?" she asked. "I'll take them all," I said. Honest! While I don't care for the proportions of little bride and huge bouquet in my photos, I do love that story.

Friday, September 12, 2008

lidia's favorites




Here are three dresses Lidia found for sale online. Which do you like best?

Wednesday, September 10, 2008

st. paul temple


I was called in to jury duty yesterday and today. I am exhausted but before going to bed I wanted to post this link to the news about our temple. I seriously don't know how someone could be so hateful. I saw the statue of Moroni put on this temple. I attended the dedication. I was there Saturday.

Monday, September 08, 2008

walking in His way

In celebration that I was not called in to jury duty today, I am posting this that I found on Merdian Magazine:

I once asked my Valiant age Primary class what it meant to “walk in His way.” One boy replied: "If we walk in his way, we should say, ‘Excuse me.'”

barracuda

I reread my "speechwriter" post and I'm afraid it was poorly worded. Sarcasm often comes across poorly in print or doesn't come through at all. I learned that in college from reading the letters to the editor in the Daily Universe.

So, here's what I meant and should have said: I may not agree with Sarah Palin on all or even half the issues, but I can still see that she's getting shafted by the media. At first I thought it was because she's a woman and then I thought it was because she's an attractive woman. But Michelle Obama is an attractive woman too who is also a media darling. The difference (aside from the ideological) between the two is that Sarah Palin didn't follow the acceptable feminist career path. She didn't go to a fancy college and she didn't have a high profile career before having children. That's why the media and the feminists are so upset with her.

Here is something I've been wondering: Did John McCain or any of his people ever say that Palin was picked to attract the Hillary Clinton votes? I don't think so. And yet the media is so convinced this is the case. Palin, so far, has turned out to be an incredibly shrewd pick. She has ignited the Republican base who were unenthused about McCain pre-Palin. She is being portrayed as a reformer, she is young and charismatic, she's an eloquent public speaker, heck, she's the Republican Obama. Right down to the lack of experience and slightly shady dealings.

I scoffed at the idea of Hillary voters going for McCain. But here's what has completely bowled me over: They are!!! I heard on the radio this morning that a new poll shows that 23% of former Hillary supporters now support McCain. I am confused by this. Can anyone explain this to me?

I have been researching the issues because I'm still undecided. I do prefer McCain's platform in some areas, but have doubts about how much he could accomplish with a Democratic Senate and House.

Friday, September 05, 2008

the search for a solo dress


There are various ways I'm trying to distract myself from my impending jury duty. I feel a lot of anxiety about it. I'm having trouble sleeping and that is making me irritable, forgetful, and sometimes even a little disoriented.

If you followed the link to Lidia's blog, you learned that she got another first place at an Irish dance competition and thus earned the right to wear a solo dress. I have posted photos here of Lidia performing with her dance school friends, many of whom already wear solo dresses. There have been comments about the gaudiness of the solo dresses. As Lidia says, "It's not like I would wear one to church or walking down the street, for goodness's sake! But it's fun to wear one for a competition or performance." When I first saw the solo dresses, I was like, "What?!" And then when I heard how much they cost, I was like, "Uh-uh."

Three years after becoming part of the Irish dance world, I've found that these outrageous solo dresses have grown on me. Yes, they are totally over-the-top. High-school age girls who would only wear the hippest, trendiest, devil-may-care duds to school or on a date, get all dolled up like sparkle princess wanna-bes when it's time to dance. It's crazy, I admit. But now I think it's also a lot of fun. Lidia has been looking forward to this for a long time and has worked very hard to achieve it. It's wasn't easy. Let the search begin!

Many advanced dancers have a dress made in Ireland or elsewhere and that is very expensive. Finding a good used dress is the best option for a first-time solo dress. The easiest is to find one through your school. Next easiest, find one you can try on from the used dress rack at a feis (competition). Lastly, you resort to the internet. Lidia and I have been checking out DanceAgain and Dancing Exchange. Last night Lidia tried on a dress a school friend has outgrown. Sadly, it did not fit. It seemed to fit through the shoulders, but the torso was too long. That may be the case for many dresses, as I've looked at the measurements on the internet. Lidia has her Mom's high waist.
The blue dress to the left is the dress Lid tried on. This isn't the best picture of it. It's a beautiful blue. The two above are my favorite dresses in our school. They are worn by sisters who are championship dancers. The little one in the gold and turquoise went to the World Championship. If I were making the perfect dress for Lidia, I would make it the same style and shape as the gold and turquoise, but with the sleeves and colors of the other one.

Thursday, September 04, 2008

did you catch the speechwriter's speech last night?

The very first comments from the pundits about Sarah Palin's speech last night were in praise of the speechwriter. Because it's not like someone who's that good-looking and who's given birth to five children would have any coherent thoughts. No, but by gosh she's one fine reader of the teleprompter!

There was no mention of Obama's speechwriter during DNC coverage. And I haven't heard his teleprompter-reading skills lauded by the press.

Wednesday, September 03, 2008

clan conner

The day after Mike and Mal's reception, clan Conner gathered at my grandparent's home. It was supposed to be out at the Lake, but it was raining buckets. We packed ourselves into Gram's house and garage and did what we do best: talk, eat, dance, and sing.


the cubist

Georgie shows off her cube ability. Last year she could consistently solve it in less than 30 seconds. Her record was 17 seconds.

irish step dance off

Levi challenged Lidia to an Irish step dance off. Unfortunately, this is the only clear photo I got of Lidia. She maintains that she won the dance off, but I'm not sure. If his toes were just a little more pointed here, it would be perfection.
Fauna, don't you think we need to add this move into the school's choreography?
A zoom in to the above photo reveals... yes, I'm afraid it's a wardrobe malfunction.Levi loathes being the center of attention.

island dance

Mal picked up some island dance living in Saipan. She taught the girls and they loved it. Malie, what are those scarf things called again?cute drummerGo, Lulu! DTV got into it.
The scary things is, he was really good.

so this is love

We ended the night listening to Levi sing a song he wrote. I think it was "So This is Love." (Right?) You can hear it with the band here. It was the perfect ending to a perfect clan Conner gathering.




gag

I tried to hold it back but I can't.

Just yesterday I ranted about ranters but I have a confession to make: Sometimes I think people who don't agree with me are morons.

Specifically, two of the pundits on CNN. You know, it's not so much that I don't share their views. I just think they are morons.

I always scoffed a bit at the accusation of a "liberal media," almost as much as I scoffed at the idea of a "vast right-wing conspiracy." And I honestly believe that people don't try to be biased. But they don't always do anything to prevent it, either.

I watched some coverage of the Democratic National Convention. I suppose that I am technically an undecided voter because I want to keep an open mind. But most of you know I voted for Obama in the primaries and I'm leaning left for the general election. In spite of this, I have to say that the fauning, dewey-eyed, reverential treatment of the DNC by CNN made me nauseous. I can't tell you how many times I rolled my eyes and groaned.

Last night I watched CNN coverage of the RNC and sure enough, there was no reverence. Not that I wanted there to be. But what I couldn't believe was how openly snide and condescending two CNN's "political analysts" were. And could someone explain to me why they kept referring to stirring moments in the speeches as "red meat?" What's up with that? No one mentioned "red meat" while covering the DNC. Maybe they would have had to say "free-range red meat" there to be pc and it was too much of a mouthful.

Okay, I'll stop now.

Tuesday, September 02, 2008

kidless in minneapolis

last year this morning

This morning all of my kids went to school. It's just Frodo and me until 3:03.
So far: I ate breakfast with a bunch of kidless and semi-kidless friends. I bought a CD at a music store. I caught up on a few blogs.
I can't believe it's already noon and that's all I've done.
Oh! This afternoon I'm going to shop for a bedside lamp.
This morning at the breakfast friends kept asking what my plans are for the kidless life. I haven't had much time to think of it, frankly. Next week I start jury duty. It lasts for two weeks. I am SO not looking forward to that, but when it's over, I'll find some fabulous kidless things to do. For now I'm content to dub around.

Monday, September 01, 2008

news


Lidia has some exciting news. And it's not about blueberries.

family blogs




I don't have my blog links up anymore but I plan change that soon. Just now when reading the comments on the former post, I remembered that I haven't mentioned here that my Auntie Lee has a blog now. Auntie lives in the Netherlands. Athena has told me in the past that she thought Auntie Lee should have a blog. Well, she finally does! She's at Yes. We are on Mars! Stop by and say hello to the new blogger.


Here are some more family blogs:


Witless Ways or Thoughtful Days My hilarious and gorgeous sister, Ave.


Would you like some coffee? my big little brother, Link.


The thinks my aunt ML in Saipan


Michael and Mallory the darling, unusually photogenic newlyweds!


My mom has a blog too but she's too shy and she doesn't want me to link to it. Hi, Mom!


Not blogs, but cool:


My brother DTV's myspace


Million Year Echo my cousin Levi's band. They're really good. Check them out. Levi is the lead singer and songwriter.


Selena Moshell photography by Levi's multi-talented girlfriend. She's also a bird in Disney's The Lion King show! And she's also very sweet.

a rant about ranters

I quickly grow weary of those who think that anyone who does not believe just as they do about politics is a moron.

I have friends who read this blog who are quite liberal or quite conserative, and I can tell that they respect others' beliefs too. They discuss their views in a mature, thoughtful way. Today I feel grateful for those friends.