Tuesday, November 25, 2003

Happy Thanksgiving!

I probably won't be posting any more blogs for a few days because, tomorrow, we will be taking off into the wild blue yonder to celebrate Thanksgiving with family in Indiana.

We hope you all have a marvelous, joyous, memorable holiday, full of peace, awareness of God's presence, family, friends, festivity and, of course, FOOD. God has indeed blessed us all abundantly.

Domestic Responsibility

"I hate housework. You make the beds, you wash the dishes and six months later you have to start all over again." - Joan Rivers

Last night was laundry night. Ugh. The worst thing about our apartment is we have to carry our laundry to a separate facility. Blah! Last night I sorted the laundry and started walking over to the facility. Half way there, I realized I forgot the soap. So, I went back and got it. Half way there again, I realized I forgot the key to open the door to the facility. So, I went back and got that. On my third trip, I realized that I forgot the quarters to put in the machines. ARGH!!! I was carrying two loads of clothes, mind you, and they were quite heavy. It was all just an exasperating experience.

One of my blogger friends has several times referred to his "housewife" readers. For the record, I hope he is not referring to me. Someday, when we have kids, I plan to be a full-time homemaker. I do not, however, ever plan on being married to a house. And, thus, will never be a housewife. Thank you. Thank you very much. ;)

I’m Now Related to a Country Singer

I remember a carefree day, four or five years ago, when my friend Meredith and I went to the Orange County Fair. Meredith, having been born in Texas and never having lost her roots, is a huge country music fanatic. She will admit to you that she has had a long-standing crush on Brad Paisley and several other male country singers. I fondly remember Meredith participating in a country music quiz at the fair. She got every question right and won a free t-shirt. It was a very exciting moment. Later that evening, we went to a live concert by Diamond Rio. She sang every word by heart. It was awesome. That’s one of the things I love about Meredith - she’s so confident and secure in who she is. Because of that, she makes a great friend.

In her tradition of trying to cultivate in me an appreciation for country music, Meredith bought me my first Dixie Chicks CD. Of course, this was before they publicly slammed G.W. Bush. Since then, the Chicks’ reputation has been irreparably tarnished in our eyes, both of us being devout Republican Women.

Now let me switch gears just a little bit. Kevin is a lover of classical music. He really digs it. He’s not one of those conservatives who works hard to convince themselves they really do like it - because their convictions won’t allow anything else. He likes it for it’s own sake. We sometimes battle over what to listen to in the car. Should we listen to "Goodbye Earl" or some sonata? Kevin is teaching me to appreciate classier music and I’m teaching him to appreciate sassier music.

All this background was needed to tell you how SHOCKED and AMAZED I was to learn that Kevin had accepted an invitation, extended through the director of his choral society, to be one of the background voices in KENNY ROGER’s Christmas Concert, coming to Sacramento on December 16. I can’t wait to see this. I’m going to be at that concert and I don’t care how much I have to pay for a ticket.

I never dreamed there would be a day when Kevin sang country music - especially on a stage.

Anything is now possible.

Monday, November 24, 2003

A Blog from Kevin

"BTW, it's 'subwoofer' not 'subwolfer.'"

No Kidding

On MSN today: "[Evolution] knit and purl our neural matter into patterns guiding many of the behaviors that guarantee humankind's survival, evolutionary psychologists tell us. Those patterns still skulk in our unconscious minds, inciting us to eat fatty food, recklessly eyeball the neighborhood for sex partners, collect gossip, and battle others for a place in the pecking order. ‘Our modern skulls house a stone age mind,’ as science writer William Allman once axiomized it, and capitalizing on the human ape's basest instincts is what moves 6 million copies of the Star, Us, and People each week."

Learning New Things

Marriage is wonderful because you both have things to contribute to the other person for their edification and knowledge.

The other night, for instance. Amy taught Kevin that, when you eat Chinese food, if you ask for it in a take-out box, they give you bigger servings. She also taught him (by example) that you can pretty much always get up to 25 % off an item at a store if there's a blemish on it and you ask the clerk.

By contrast, Kevin tends to teach Amy about intelligent, scholarly things. She learned about the concept of "subwolf" while they looked at alarm clocks. (In case you don't know, it's a sound that your ear can't detect where it's coming from.) He also taught her about the difference between hot press and cold press paper - which you need to know about if you're an artist.

Learning new things is very cool.

By the way, when I got the 25% off, I thought the item was ten dollars - which would have been (even at $10) a fantastic deal. Since the case was cracked a little bit, I thought I'd ask for the discount, which they gave me. When they rung it up, it was only two dollars - it probably had already been marked down because of the blemish. After the discount, it was only $1.50. I felt like I stole it or something.

The same thing happened at the Tommy Hilfiger outlet store. We bought an article of clothing we thought was $26. We were willing and able to pay that much, thinking (again) that $26 was a fabulous deal. When they wrung it up, it came out as $6. And this one didn't even have any blemishes.

With that luck, we figured we should just keep on shopping!

Holiday Fortune

Friday night was one of those cold autumn evenings where you want to find the warmest sweater you possess to help keep out the chill. They say when you move to a warmer climate, your blood will thin to adjust. Likewise, when you move to a colder climate your blood will thicken. So far, my blood has thinned and Kevin's has rebelled.

On the evening mentioned, we went out to do some early Christmas shopping. (Note from the author: this is the most we have ever been prepared for Christmas - EVER.) Before hitting the shops, we stopped by Panda Express and ate some Chinese food. There is something soothing and marvelous about eating hot, steaming orange chicken on a crisp autumn night. Especially with the one you love. As we ate, we ruminated on the fact that this is the first Christmas we've had for five or so years where we can just enjoy the holidays without the stress of final exams. Sigh . . . I always knew that life would eventually turn less chaotic.

During dinner I noticed an older couple sitting at the table across from us. Neither of them said anything to the other during their whole meal. I wondered if they had run out of things to talk about after all those years. I thought to myself how sad that was. I silently swore that I would never let that happen - I would take up belly dancing or lion taming or something exciting so I could tell Kevin about it at dinner when we're old. ;-)

Of course, we had fortune cookies with our dinner. And I saved them so I could tell you about them. (For those of you who are still not convinced about the worth of having a blog, I ask you: Where else would I be able to tell you about our fortune cookies?)

Mine said: "You are open and honest in your philosophy of love." Kevin said that was true.

Kevin's said: "Impulsiveness where money is concerned, is not your style." Amy told Kevin that was VERY true.

I think it's terribly funny our cookies weren't switched.

'Tis the Season to Travel

It’s been several months since we’ve traveled on an airplane. But we plan to again join the throng at the airport in a few days to go to Indiana for Thanksgiving. As you probably know, the travel-world has changed dramatically since 9-11. I hate the fact that loved ones can’t be there to greet you at your gate. I hate that you have to meet them in the hectic baggage claim area. Maybe it’s just that I’ve always fantasized about having a lover to meet me at my gate. Then, as soon as I did, he couldn’t be there. (So, I’m just an embittered, slighted female.) Another thing I think is just plain STUPID is the random baggage searches just prior to boarding the plane - AFTER you’ve already gone through numerous metal detectors. Do they actually uncover any contraband by subjecting old women and children to this treatment? It always amuses me that we can justify pulling out little grandmas, dressed in cute flowery pink dresses with matching shoes and a handbag, from the line to frisk them for weapons. We do this because we have to be "tolerant" and politically correct, you know. I once witnessed security personnel pass by two men who looked like they’d come straight from the Taliban and remove a small, elderly, innocent-looking Japanese woman who couldn’t speak any English. She was very bewildered and had no clue as to why she was being taken out of line. Talk about emotional distress. As if SHE would have the strength and ambition to knife down a flight attendant to take over the plane. The notion is ludicrous. I think a lot of the hype is simply to hallucinate the masses into believing they are safe and secure.

Friday, November 21, 2003


"You just love to speculate about things you know nothing about. And I love hearing you say a bunch of bunk." - Kevin (to Amy, as they were riding in the car this morning and she was telling him why there’s probably less traffic on Fridays, of which she had no clue.)


Here is my random rendition of the night previous, celebrating Thanksgiving with friends from our young marrieds bible study.

Overheard Kevin talking with someone about how, if it’s 70 degrees below zero, and you spit in the air, your spit will make a cracking sound. (That must have been the most bizarre thing these Californians have ever heard.)

Us wives were eating dinner in the living room, having a good time, laughing about something. That’s when one of the husbands (another guy named Kevin) entered the room and said, "I thought I’d join you so I could see what women talk about." His wife, Christy, said, "We talk about our husbands!" [Snickering ensued.] Kendra (who is very cute and always brings up random things) brought up the topic of non-stick cookware. Kevin rolled his eyes. Apparently Kendra was concerned because she saw on TV that Teflon is very toxic and will kill a bird if it’s in the room when you cook. Oh my!

After dinner, we played ping-pong, and then some Catch Phrase. I always thought I was a competitive person. But I think I’m a WALL FLOWER compared to some of these people. It was a battle of the sexes, of course. Whenever the timer would buzz on the guys, they would always get so animated and dispute everything. One time, during a spat, Kevin was on the girls’ side. This guy named Ryan shouted out, "We don’t trust you because you’re a LAWYER." Then Paul piped up and said, "No, I agree with Kevin." Ryan retorted back, "We don’t trust you either because you’re a cop, and you KNOW lawyers!" These people just make me laugh. They really do. At one point, someone started throwing Skittles. It was all just very funny.

Got home at about 10:30. That is when we remembered that our Godfather movies were due at midnight. We thought we’d hurry through the last part of the last movie and then take it back. After all, we had to get every penny’s worth! And, in spite of the fact that I was very unimpressed with the whole saga, I HAD to see how it would end. Maybe, I thought, the movie would redeem itself.

We finished watching it at 11:55 on the dot. I should never have watched the ending. I would have had a (slightly) better impression of the movie had I not seen the ending. Basically, everyone central to the plot . . . died. There wasn’t any resolution. The last scene is Michael (the main guy) having a heart attack and falling from his chair, while sitting alone outside his house in Sicily. It gave the impression that he was a lonely, old, unhappy, unfulfilled man when he died. It was very unsettling. I’m sure the movie had more "points" to make - but they were all lost on me.

Kevin offered to return the movie so I could go to bed. I thought, however, that I would be a good, supportive wife, and went with him. We pulled into the movie store parking lot at 12:03. It was very interesting to discover that video store employees actually work at midnight to document videos returned by the deadline. Just keep that in mind in case you ever are tempted to fudge the deadline: there will be consequences for your deeds. ;-) I don’t think they’ll penalize us for the three minutes, though.

Thursday, November 20, 2003


"When you live in light of eternity, your values change." - R. Warren

"There are two kinds of people: those who say to God ‘Thy will be done’ and those to whom God says, ‘All right then, have it your way.’" -- C.S. Lewis

"An unhappy religious person is the worst testimony for God and religion in the world." - Dennis Prager

The Way It Is

Have you ever been driving on the road when you realize you don’t remember certain portions of your trip? Well, I must say, that happens to me now and then. Yesterday, for instance. I got into my car and started driving home. A few minutes later I noticed I was entering the freeway but didn’t remember exiting the parking lot or driving the several miles to the freeway entrance. Kevin tells me all the time, "You scare me."

My poor father is the one who taught me how to drive. (He also taught my two spacey sisters how to drive.) But don’t let this cloud your view of my dad. I don’t think the father should bear the sins of the children. Especially since he’s the one with the flawless driving record. But, actually, speaking of which, I now have a flawless driving record too! This fact will simultaneously amaze and horrify my friends out there who know of the "past life and times of Amy Williams." Times when I did things like spin around on the interstate while trying to find a muffin that fell under my seat. And when I totaled two cars in the period of one month. (My airbag went off both times, by the way. It was an interesting experience but I don't recommend you try it . . . especially not twice.) Sad for my sisters, they inherited the car that I learned how to drive in. And, I definitely left my mark on the legendary vehicle! There was a huge gouge in the car on the driver's side and the passenger's side rear view mirror was no longer attached.

My first car accident happened about two hours after I got my learner’s permit. It was a "bump" in a parking lot. Fortunately, there was no injury to person or vehicle. My second accident happened on the freeway during rush hour. My dad was riding with me in the passenger’s seat. I was driving this beat-up Chevy Celebrity and rear-ended a guy in a BMW. Go figure! We pulled over to the side of the freeway. I looked helplessly at my dad. He said, "I’m staying in the car. You go talk to him. You’re the one who hit him - you need to deal with it." Although I didn’t have too many warm, fuzzy feelings toward my dad at that moment, I now realize that was one of the best things he did, at the time, to help me grow up!

So, anyway, back to my point: I now am happy to report that I have a clean driving record (no scuffles in over three years). Not that people like me should have a clean record - for a long, long, long, long time. But, hey, that’s the way it is.

Last night we got an interesting voice mail. This lady from a temp job I worked at when we first arrived in Sacramento called and asked if I could come work for them again next week - because I did such a great job last time. Upon hearing the message, I couldn’t control myself and laughed out loud, "Ha! The only thing I did for them was sit at a desk and smile." Seriously. It’s almost as if cheerfulness in temp employees is a rare commodity.

Kevin hotly disputes the allegations I made that Jackson had a French manicure. However, there’s no denying it. I’ve got the proof. ;)

Tonight we’re going to an "early" Thanksgiving dinner with all our bible study friends. I’m ALL ABOUT celebrating holidays as long as possible. :D So, I’d better go. Need to make a pie.

Wednesday, November 19, 2003

The Rules of Ending Bad Conversation

Here’s something that should seem obvious: when you want to quit a conversation with someone, shut-up yourself and don’t ask more questions or make sympathetic, affirming comments!! Today I talked to a small-town, mountain-man columnist who liked very much to monologue about himself and his ever-wonderful work. (He’s the most influential columnist in his county, he told me. He has the ability to destroy any local politician that crosses him, he told me. He was quoted on Rush the other day, he told me. He told me a LOT more too, by the way.) Despite the fact that I really did want to get off the phone with him and get on with my life, I broke the basic rules of successfully ending a bad conversation. What could have been a five minute conversation lasted 40! I think I have a disease that makes me ask questions.

Today's Prejudices

The current debate in our household is whether or not Michael Jackson is a sick pervert or just a "different sort of guy." Keep in mind that I will obviously be biased in relaying the facts to you. Let me note, however, that Kevin has the password to this blog and is free to comment whenever his time permits. ;) Also keep in mind that our last discussion took place before a warrant was issued for his arrest (Jackson's arrest, not Kevin's) ;), which now indicates that there is probable cause to support my intuitions.

I (Amy) think that Jackson is a perverted and detestable excuse-of-a-human being and he should be locked away for life. What kind of sicko would invite all sorts of young, non-related boys into his bedroom (and bed!) for a slumber party? Kevin thinks he should be given the benefit of a doubt and that his conduct could have been "fatherly" and innocent. For instance, he says, "Home schoolers are often a ‘different’ sort of people, but that doesn’t mean they should be locked away for life. Just because you may be ‘different’ doesn’t mean that society and law enforcement should presume the worst about you." I don’t know about this argument. I’m having a hard time buying it. But, I did admit to him, that I saw his point.

Another point of disagreement: I think Jackson is at least partially transgender. He has make-up permanently tatooed to his face and, last time I saw a picture of him, he had a FRENCH MANICURE. (I don’t think my nails have never looked that nice!) I forget what Kevin said in Jackson’s defense. He’ll have to fill you in on that one. Keep in mind: I’m not saying Kevin likes Jackson at all - he’s just more open-minded than I am about the subject.


Each Godfather movie we watch gets progressively worse. The first one, in spite of the violence, was pretty good. I could have lived the rest of my life never having seen the second one. The third one (we’ve only watched fifteen minutes so far) looks like it’s going to be lame. But I’ll wait another fifteen minutes or so to give it a second chance.

Tidbit: MSN reports that one of the best ways to lose weight is to eat breakfast every day. So don’t think that skipping breakfast will make your stomach shrink and make you a skinny little thing! ;)

Another Tidbit: Just in case your mom ever tells you that, if you swallow gum, it takes seven (7) years for your body to digest it, this is NOT TRUE. According to Cynthia Yoshida, M.D, "If you swallow a tooth, a penny or even gum, it goes right through your system. Although it's sticky, gum does not attach itself to the well-lubricated lining of the gastrointestinal tract." (Just thought this might profit you in life somehow.)

Sticks and Stones

This might sound very childish but my favorite bible story is probably David and Goliath. I just read it today and think it is so profound. Here is David, facing opposition from everyone. Goliath mocks him, "Am I a little dog, that you come to me with sticks?" David’s own brother condescends him by telling him to "go back and tend to your few little sheep in the fields." Saul questions him, saying, "You are just a young boy!" If David had allowed others to influence him, he would have had every reason to feel insecure. But no outside influence phased David. The only thing that mattered to him was "How DARE Goliath defy the living God." He went out boldly to defend His God. He didn’t go out trembling, but with confidence and faith. He knew, with God on his side, he couldn’t possibly lose.

Tuesday, November 18, 2003

Mystic Fog

This morning, fog infiltrated and surrounded Sacramento. I hear it’s common in the central valley to experience fog in the winter. And I’m glad. I love fog - it is just so cozy, romantic, and mysterious.

We’ve been in Sacramento now for four months. It’s interesting because every time we talk to the locals about living here, they say the same thing: "Sacramento is a wonderful place to live because it’s so close to everything! It’s close to Tahoe, the Pacific Ocean, San Francisco, Napa, the Redwoods, Yosemite, etc., etc.!" It’s funny to us because no one ever has anything good to say about Sacramento itself. The only thing good about Sacramento, they say, is that it’s close to OTHER things.

Wands and Rats

Last night on my way to the parking lot to get my car, I found a glittery gold magic wand, with a star at the tip, lying on the ground. Kevin says it’s revolting that I pick up nasty, germ-ridden objects from the ground. But I couldn’t resist. It probably belonged to some sweet, angelic child who cried when she lost it.

When I go to pick-up Kevin at his office, I have two choices for entering the building. I can go through the main entrance, which is "miles" from where I park. Or, I can go through the side entrance which lets me in near Kevin’s office door. His office window, on the street level, is near where I park. Usually he notices right away that I am standing there waiting for him to let me in. Last night I stood there, with my magic wand in hand, for what seemed like several minutes. Soon I started shaking my glittery wand at him to get his attention. At that point I realized that I must look like some crazy FREAK, standing outside the building waving my magic wand at some guy sitting at his desk. When no one was around to see me, I picked up a twig and threw it at Kev’s window. He instantly jumped in his chair. I felt bad but, hey, desperate times call for desperate measures! When I walked to the side entrance to meet Kevin, I noticed a large rat sitting outside the door. (It was either a large rat or a gargantuan mouse!) Once I saw Kevin through the glass door, I shrieked and pointed to the rat. He raised his eyebrows, cracked the door, and said he’d go get something to throw at it. I ran back to the car, closed the door, and rolled down the window to see what would happen.

Soon Kevin returned with a fist full of plastic spoons from the kitchen. He cracked open the door and threw a spoon at the beast. It landed right next to the rat. The rat stiffened and raised its nose but didn’t otherwise move. It was as if it was mocking us and saying, "This is MY territory." Kevin threw another spoon at it. This time the spoon landed smack on its back. The rat, again, only moved slightly. All the while, I was sitting in the car, laughing my head off at this charade. Eventually, being the brilliant people that we are, we figured that there must be something wrong with it. Kevin called out for me to tiptoe around the rat and enter the building. I did so, with some trepidation, I must admit. My wild imagination envisioned the nasty creature reaching out to bite me and infect me with some horrid disease. I was relieved to make it safely into the confines of the building with no further incident. (Honestly, I feel sorry for the poor rat - it must have been terrified to be injured and helpless like that. Poor thing.)

I can’t believe I just wrote that last sentiment. I’m getting WAY too emotional if I have feelings for a rat!

From that point on, we followed the usual end-of-the-work-day routine. Typically I sit in a chair across from Kevin’s desk and find something to amuse myself as he wraps up his last project and calculates his billable hours for the day. Wretched billable hours. I think that would be the worst part about being a "real lawyer." So much of your life would be complicated by the math. And, I’m sure I’d miscalculate every now and then and cheat some poor client. It’s a good thing Kevin is the one that has the real job.

Monday, November 17, 2003

The Big Guy

There are a lot of important-looking people milling around downtown right now. I observed them as I took a brief walk in the brisk early afternoon air to meet a friend at Café Dolce. As I walked, I met a group of media standing on a street corner. A young woman bystander was also standing there. I asked, "What are you guys waiting for?" Her eyes widened and she said, "Arnold is supposed to walk by here." I continued on my merry way. Twenty minutes later, as I walked back to the office, I saw the same star-crazed girl standing in the same spot. What a waste of your life . . . waiting around like that. Arnold bleeds red like everyone else. What a sucker.

Did you watch the inauguration this morning? (I have a job where I can do that, so maybe you didn’t.) The thing that most amused me was the Catholic priest who gave the invocation. Is anyone foolish enough to think he was actually talking to God? Another amusing thing: he spent several sentences (in his prayer!) talking about the "indominable spirit" of Maria Shriver - but I don’t recall him talking much about Arnold.

Sabbath Day

Church yesterday morning was pretty much uneventful. Oh, except for the fact that when I was trying to squeeze in between the narrow pews to get into my seat, I spilled almost my entire glass of water onto this lady (and her son) in front of me. Oops! I immediately told her how sorry I was. Then I assured her that it was only water. Later, Kevin told me I shouldn't have said "it’s only water" because that gave the appearance that I was trying to brush it off. Argh. That’s the story of my life. Being a klutz, experiencing the consequences, and then doing even more stupid things to "make up" for it. The worst part of the story is that I think the lady was a new visitor. :-/

That afternoon, we made lunch and then watched part of The Godfather II. The saga continues! We were interrupted by a call for help from a nearby cousin. They were moving across town and needed help. Seeing how it is always lawful to do good on the Sabbath, and, I must confess, because we like these cousins a lot and thought it would be fun to hang-out with them, we came to their aid.

On our way home from helping them move, we saw this huge flashy casino (on Indian land) off the highway. I’m not sure how "lawful" it is to go to Casinos on the Sabbath, but we decided to check it out anyway. (It was Kevin’s idea, I was shocked. Shocked!) Just so you know, we didn’t go to gamble. My constitution cannot handle losing even ONE penny for anything. On the way out, Kevin remarked that he didn’t see anyone that looked genuinely happy in the whole place. We only saw people, rather than being content where they are, trying to get rich because they think that a lot of money will finally give them the happiness they crave so desperately. Very sad.

Frolic and Merriment

I never knew how much fun you could have in a Bose store. You know, that sound-system store that is all the rave now? Saturday we went to the outlet mall to do some preliminary Christmas shopping. (We ended up not buying anything, though. There’s something quirky about doing a budget that makes you not want to spend money . . . but I’m SURE that will pass.) First of all, let me tell you, that we had spent the entire morning looking at different furniture stores for living room furniture. We saw some things we liked but neither of us were thrilled about anything. Let me modify that sentence: Neither of us were thrilled about anything WITHIN THE BUDGET. It’s funny to me that Kevin has so many opinions in home decor. Overall, I agree with his taste in furniture. He’s a pretty classy guy. This particular morning he was rather negative on all the furniture we saw. I was beginning to think he didn’t even like furniture at all! Upon entering the Bose store, however, his eyes lit up. Before our very eyes, there was a display set up with living room furniture. "I LOVE this couch!!," he exclaimed. "And, look at those chairs! Aren’t they cool?!" That, my friends, would be our luck. The ONE set of furniture in all of Sacramento that Kevin likes . . . is not for sale.

After leaving the delightful furniture, we decided to sit-in on the "theater show" in the next room. The show was already in progress. We stumbled in the dark to find our seats in the back row. I must say, the sound effects were rather impressive. Contrast was shown between a "regular" stereo system and a Bose system. A flat-sounding singer was made to sound like a live performance. It all turned hokey, though, when images where shown of people laughing and crying. "Our sound system will bring laughter, smiles, and tears to your home." Kevin started snickering, which is very uncharacteristic of him. We were both soon muffling laughter. I was afraid the attendant would come kick us out.

After shopping, we were sacked. (Hee hee.) We cut out a coupon allowing us 3 DVDs or videos for $0.99 each and went to the movie store. You know how sometimes you can end up spending more time trying to find a move to rent than you would spend watching it? Well, we decided against doing that and rented these movies: 1) The Godfather, 2) The Godfather II, and 3) The Godfather III. After we rented them, we realized that most of our non-working, waking hours the next week were going to be spent watching television. Although we didn’t believe this was a healthy thing, we decided to defy all notions of responsibility and do it anyway.

We watched all of the first one that night. It was a bonding experience, really. We spent most of our time shielding eachother’s eyes from the gross parts.

Looking for Solutions

Warning note: This blog is a little edgy (gross).

I decided to make cinnamon rolls to take to a staff meeting on Monday. I only had a short window of time to bake them yesterday and decided to do it quickly. To my dismay, upon reading the recipe, it called for two "room temperature" eggs. (You know, I really hate those advance preparation recipes! They just totally cramp my style.) I held the chilled eggs in my hands and realized that, unless I thought of something brilliant, I wasn’t going to have room temperature eggs for several hours to come. Suddenly I had an inspiration. I would microwave them! Kevin, however, strongly advised me against it. In a spirit of jest (and to get a reaction), I suggested Kevin place them under his armpits for about ten minutes - that would do the trick! Of course, he recoiled at the very thought. Trying to think of another solution (or get me back), he suggested I place the eggs in my mouth. !!!!???!!!! I’m sorry, but that just totally grossed me out. Do you not know where eggs come from, man? Nothing that touches the behind of a dirty chicken will dare enter the sanctity of my mouth.

Kevin said I wouldn’t have had time to bake them, anyway. He thinks I’m unrealistic when it comes to time allocation. You know what? He’s probably right. He usually is.

Logical Sense

K: I am a very logical person.
A: Most of the time. Not always.
K: Like when? When have I not been logical?
A: (not really able to think of anything) Today, for instance.
K: What?!! What are you talking about?
A: Today there was something you didn’t make logical sense about, I’m sure.
K: (insulted) Well, I’m sure I made perfect logical sense every second of today.

Friday, November 14, 2003

What You Do

"It's not what you do, but how much love you put into it that matters." - Mother Theresa

Messed Up World

My friend, boss, co-worker, and co-conspirator Karen is so funny. She was listening to talk radio a few minutes ago and the issue of transgender operations came up. Apparently there is some guy who has decided that he wants to become . . . not a woman, but a cat. He wants to have cat skin and hair grafted into his own skin, and the whole works. I gave Karen a sound bite on the issue and she, being bold and loving controversy, decided to call in about it. Talk show people love Karen because she is so passionate, articulate, and quick to answer. She pretty much ALWAYS gets on air when she calls in. When they put her on the air, I listened in from the next room. They talked to her for like FIVE minutes. Funny.

After she was done ranting about the issue, the show hosts announced that the next topic of disscussion will be the Victoria Secret fashion show. Apparently some people are paying up to $12,000.00 to attend the show. The show will feature a model wearing an $11 million dollar bra.

What is this world coming to?

Late Bloomer

Well, well, well. We are very pleasantly surprised to see that Sacramento hasn't disappointed us. It just procrastinated a bit. Beautiful fall colors have almost suddenly unfolded. Most of the colors seem to be "rusty" (burnt orange and red, and deep purples) but many of them are bright and vibrant. In fact, there are several trees in our apartment complex that are gorgeous - bright reds and yellows. Kevin says one of them looks like a "big stick" popsicle - red on the top, orange and yellow on the bottom. Incredible! Kevin says we need to get pictures so that all our friends "back east" will believe us.

Question of the day: Why do they call them "back east" and "out west," respectively? (I really don't know the answer, by the way.)

Thursday, November 13, 2003

Timing it Right

We have this offensive, beastly dog next door that barks and yaps incessantly in the evening and early morning when you are trying to sleep. I usually don’t hear it when I’m already sleeping, but it typically wakes up Kevin. Up to this point, we’ve been tolerating it. Anyway . . . you know how I told you about our "Apartment Nazi" (manager), Pam, and how she moved into the apartment next to us? Well, one "positive" aspect of her move, we hoped, was that she would figure out a way to deal with the dog next door. Last night the dog was being especially annoying. Kevin and I were in the kitchen. He turned to me and remarked, "I wonder if Pam is going to yell –" At that exact moment we heard this shrieking, deep (Pam) voice yelling "SHUUUUUUUTTTTT UUUUUPPPPPPP!!!!!" It was classic and it was awesome!

Well, we’ve finally finished our budget. I feel like Congress, or something. This morning, while carpooling to work, Kevin and I were talking about it. He said, "I feel so relieved to have our budget done!" I replied, "Me too. And, it wasn’t even that painful." (Neither of us threw anything at eachother. No tears. Nothing!) "It wasn't even that BAD." At that exact moment, we said in unison, "Well, not YET anyway!" This is true. Everything is merely theoretical at this point.

Wednesday, November 12, 2003

Oh! By the way . . .

Kevin commented this morning on how my hair had natural red highlights in it, which were revealed by the sun.

A: See, I WOULD look good if I dyed it all red.
K: That's not what I said.
A: But, God created my skin so it looks good with red tones in my hair.
K: And God wants your hair to be the exact same color it is naturally (now).
A: But He made hair so we can PLAY with it. He allowed people to invent dye so we can have fun with it!
K: That's like saying God allowed men to create knives so we can murder people.

(I don't know how he always somehow manages to bring the topic of "MURDER" into our hair dye discussions!!! Exasperating!)

Culinary Experiments

I may not be the best cook in the world but at least I try. I’m the type of person who hates to measure things, always substitutes ingredients (including things that seem essential), and I love trying out NEW recipes. With all that, you’d think I’d have constant disasters at every turn but, actually, I’ve been pretty lucky. Recently I found a Chik-fil-A chicken sandwich recipe online. My mouth instantly watered, excited about the prospects. The recipe required frying the chicken, which I had never done. I learned several new lessons last night: 1) don’t estimate the temperature of oil, 2) oil heats up very quickly, and 3) oil will blacken and shrivel-up your chicken in seconds if it’s hot enough. When I threw the chicken in the pan, smoke almost instantaneously filled our kitchen, the smoke alarm went off, of course, we rushed around like mad hens to open all the windows and doors. It was all very comical, really. I’m glad Kevin had a sense of humor about it! The amazing thing is that we managed to salvage a few pieces of chicken and have dinner at home! And, my word, it was good! (Even though it was charred on the outside, it was quite tender on the inside.) I’m already looking forward to trying to make it again . . . maybe tomorrow?

The moral of the story is: never, never give up. Oh, and, it helps when you follow instructions (even though it’s not very fun to be rigid about it!).

Discipline: A Necessary Evil

Okay, we know deep down inside that we need to be more disciplined, especially (lately) in the area of exercise. Knowing it and doing it are two entirely different matters, however. This morning, we managed to drag ourselves out of bed and take a walk in the chilly morning air. And . . . you know . . . when we can manage to do it, we’re glad we did. It tends to set the tone for the entire day. We feel better about ourselves. The rest of our day tends to be more disciplined too.

Good grief!

Often I scan the MSN main web page for interesting, practical articles. Today, it featured an article on how to live cheap and look rich. The article had some interesting tidbits on how to get good deals on designer items. But in my opinion it lost all credibility when I read the last paragraph. Basically, the columnist suggested that people should get married but not have kids. The article stated that, according to studies, getting married adds a happiness factor equivalent to having $100,000 added to your household income. Having children, however, doesn’t change people’s happiness one way or the other. The author says that this statistic is "good" because "kids are expensive, and since most rich people just send theirs away to boarding school anyway, you could argue that the best thing for your Live Cheap, Look Rich lifestyle is not to have the little monsters in the first place." First of all, author, there is more to life than appearing rich. Secondly, you need to hang around some healthy families for a change - rather than chasing after a bunch of snobby, dysfunctional rich people. Thirdly, the reason most of my friends have kids is for a higher purpose than their own personal fulfillment and pleasure. My friends have kids because kids, unlike money, are eternal. Kids last forever. Kids are worth the investment. I agree with Dr. Laura: a lot of people should NOT have kids. They are not worthy of having kids. They should have pets and SUVs instead.

Speaking of Dr. Laura, even though some people think she’s harsh, I think she fills an important role in society. I think she tells a lot of people things they need to hear but no one else would have the gut to say. I just love talk radio - in general. I love articulate people who shed light on things and aren’t afraid of controversy or saying something unpopular.

Tuesday, November 11, 2003

Hemingway Selections

"I love sleep. My life has the tendency to fall apart when I'm awake, you know?"

"The only thing that could spoil a day was people. People were always the limiters of happiness except for the very few that were as good as spring itself."

"Never mistake motion for action."

"Every man's life ends the same way. It is only the details of how he lived and how he died that distinguish one man from another."

"Cowardice... is almost always simply a lack of ability to suspend functioning of the imagination."

"All good books have one thing in common - they are truer than if they had really happened."

"You're beautiful, like a May fly."

Monday, November 10, 2003

Locks of Red

I think I’ve decided to go for a new look. The challenge now is to convince Kevin. I was going to dye my hair red (with a 28-day rinse) and surprise him. But, he ended up finding out about my plot. So, now, I have to persuade him that he’ll think I’m really cute and adorable with red hair. Kevin, being a naturalist, is hardly convinced. Yet.

K: How red is red?
A: The box says “auburn brown.”
K: (reading the box) The box says “bright” auburn brown.
A: I got the mildest shade I could find.
K: How much did you spend on this?
A: Six bucks. And, in 28 days, it will all fade out. No roots or anything.
K: Hmmm.
A: So, basically, in 28 days, I’ll be back to the same old Amy. No consequences or anything. My life will be the same again.
K: What if there’s a man out there who specifically is looking for redheads to murder? This dye could cost you your life.
A: What if there’s a man specifically looking for brown haired girls to murder. This dye could SAVE my life.
K: (trying not to smile at his logical wife) ;-)
A: Do you love me still?
K: Yes.
A: Do you like me still?
K: Yes, I just didn’t know you were this WILD.

Good Times

Crazy weekend! It consisted of driving a 15-passenger van full of teenagers (mostly girls) to Ventura county so they could work in a campaign. Lots of giggling, tears, shrieking, incessant cell phone rings, and, of course, rock and roll!

Saturday we went to hear Elvis perform at an open house at my dad’s work. I love a good excuse to scream and jump. Melissa and I stood in line under the warm sun for thirty minutes so we could get our faces painted. When we finally got up there, the clown asked Melissa what she wanted. She wanted a pony on one cheek and a rainbow on the other cheek. The clown looked hot and tired and she said the same exact thing to every kid, which I memorized after the third kid: “What would you like?” (kid submits his/her request) “I think I can do that.” Then she would paint the face and then hold a mirror up for the kid to see the art. “Do you like it?” (the kids nods and the clown smiles) “I like it too.” In the end, I decided not to have my face done because I felt sorry for the hot, tired clown. Oh well, maybe next time.

We had a grand old time with my family. It was awesome because everyone was there – all the kids together. Christy, Betsy and dad all crack us up constantly with their witticisms. Melissa says the darn cutest things. (I brought a pie down and proudly displayed it to Melissa. She took one look at it and said, “It looks burnt.” Another time I asked her if she was going to do something for me. She didn’t answer me. “Well, are you, Melissa?” She paused, a smile crept on her face, and then she said, “Yes, I’m Melissa.” Silly girl.) Anyway, it was a jolly time. We were tired when we got home late on Sunday, but people, experiences, and laughter, are all much better than momentary weariness. In the end, you will forget how tired you were and only have memories of the good times. That’s my philosophy anyway.

On the way back to Sacramento, we drove through numerous charred and blackened mountains. It was incredible to see the effects of the fires down there. Very tragic.

Wednesday, November 05, 2003

The Dream

Last night I dreamt that this grasshopper was jumping all around me and kept landing on my head. I was SO annoyed with it!! I remember being desperately irritated. My anger and frustration kept rising with every jump. The grasshopper was totally grossing me out and exasperating me. Finally, I pulled out a shotgun and started shooting at the grasshopper. After the second or third shot, I suddenly realized that if my bullet killed someone, I would be guilty of second degree murder under most state jurisdictions. (See, I did learn something useful in law school!) So, I put my gun away. Then, I took out a big stick to try to kill the horrid creature. At this point I was so mad, angry and annoyed that I was kicking and flailing my arms. That's when Kevin woke me up because he said I kicked him. Poor guy.

It took us awhile to fall asleep again after that. After a few moments lying there awake in the darkness, Kevin started getting philosophical on me.

K: Here is a question to ponder.
A: The question is do I want to ponder anything right now.
K: Oh, okay.
A: No, tell me anyway.
K: Who raised Christ from the dead? Was it Jesus Himself or was it God the Father?
A: I think it was God the Father.
K: Me too. That's what it says in Galations.
A: Hmmmmmmm

I think I fell asleep shortly after that.


Last night we had a delightful evening. We went to the Elephant Bar first and had ribs. Yummy. Then we went to Target. Kevin talked on the cell phone to his brother Colin (it was Colin's birthday) while I roamed the aisles trying on the different halloween masks (they are now 50% off, by the way). Then we went to Borders and sat down at the attached Starbucks and sipped an iced white mocha while Kevin continued to talk on the phone to Colin. After he got off the phone, we just wandered around the bookstore finding all sorts of interesting books to peruse. We sat cross-legged in the home decorating section for a long time looking at books to get ideas. :)

Well, I'll write more later. For now, I have to end our lovely time together. ;-)

Resurrection from the Blog Graveyard

Hello, long lost friend. No, I didn't die over the weekend (as you probably thought). My computer has just been having internet connection problems. This has been a very frustrating experience. I don't know how people LIVED before we all had the world wide web.