Saturday, December 29, 2007

The Year of Monica

So I know this girl named Francis. She was recently reflecting on 2007 and said that it was the best year of her life. "Really," I said, "Why's that?" Francis told me that she had accomplished more in 2007 than any other year in her life 'cause she committed last January to making the new year "The Year of Francis." I was intrigued and asked her to tell me more about this commitment she made. Francis always uses big words and wears really smart looking glasses, so I figure she knows what she's talking about whenever she says anything. Anyway, Francis said that she had decided to focus mainly on doing things that she had always wanted to do but just never got around to doing for one reason or another. She committed to improving herself and trying new things. So Francis has inspired me, and I've decided to make 2008 "The Year of Monica." Sounds a bit selfish? Maybe. But don't get me wrong, I'm not planning on becoming completely self-indulgent in 2008; I'm planning on learning as many new things as possible, doing things that I've always wanted to do but never have, and just trying to become a better person in general...a better daughter, a better sister, a better aunt. Yes, this new year will be "The Year of Monica." I know you guys are so excited, you can't even stand it.

Oh yeah, Hughler wants to say Happy New Year and sends his best wishes for your 2008!

Sunday, December 23, 2007


It's too late to order for Christmas, but Pete's Gourmet is a great place to go if you're a fan of mallows, like myself. They always have great holiday packages that you can order and have sent to whomever you'd like. Valentine's is coming up, so Pete should have some really fun mallow creations for that day.

Sunday, December 16, 2007

Good Reads

I heard someone say one time that life is too short to read a bad book. Boy were they right about that. I recently started going to a book club. The last book we read for the club was Christmas Jars by Jason Wright...Two thumbs down, people, two thumbs down. The only good thing about the book is that it did help me get into the Christmas spirit a little bit. I've been having trouble getting into the spirit of things this Christmas season, not sure why. But luckily, this weekend I was able to get a little excited about the holidays, thanks in part to my mom's fantastic Christmas decorations. She always does a great job filling the house with lots of cozy Christmas decor. Okay, lemme see, I'm digressing away from the purpose of this post. Well, since I had the unfortunate experience of reading a bad book this past month, I thought I'd re-read some of my favorites to get the bad taste out of my mouth, so to speak. So here are some of my all-time favorites and why. If you've never read these, I urge you to try 'em out, 'cause they're great and won't be a waste of time, promise.

The Time Traveler's Wife by Audrey Niffenegger

This book is cool 'cause it has a really captivating story, and it's about time travel, awesome. Henry travels through time involuntarily and meets up with Clare, who doesn't travel through time. The problem is that Henry really digs Clare but can't keep from traveling through time at really inconvenient junctures in their relationship. And no, this story isn't like Quantum Leap, in case anyone is thinking that. Anyway, this isn't just another sappy love story. The character development is great, and the author manages to seamlessly transition from one time period to the next.

Peace Like a River by Leif Enger

This book is about a boy who is charged with murder and how he and his family deal with that whole thing. It's written beautifully and shows how families need to stick together to get through hard times. It's also about the bond between brothers, faith, and the strength you can gain from the love your family has for you. Read it!

Me Talk Pretty One Day by David Sedaris

This book's hilarious. It's a collection of short stories, and each one is so much fun to read. All the stories are taken from true events in Sedaris' life. The writing is really witty and very, very funny. I'll definitely be re-reading this one, for like, the 20th time.

Chronicle of a Death Foretold by Gabriel Garcia Marquez

Here's Lukey reading Chronicle. Sorry you can't see the cover art. Luke's super advanced for his age and let me know that next up on his reading list is Love in the Time of Cholera, another one of Marquez's books. And there's Maya catching up on some reading of her own. Right now she's reading a couple books from the Barney series, even though I told her that Barney is sooo ten years ago. She didn't seem to care though. Okay, Chronicle of a Death Foretold is a trip. The story is about murder, weddings, lies, revenge, love, hate, crazy people running through town squares, etc. And for those of you who don't like long books, this is a must read, 'cause it's only about 140 pages long.

The Polar Express by Chris Van Allsburg

I'm sure you've probably read this one before. But if you're having a hard time getting into the Christmas spirit, like me, you should think about re-reading this. I think this is my favorite book about Santa Claus and the spirit of Christmas. The animated adaptation of the story they made a couple years back with Tom Hanks creeped me out a little, but I'm still a huge fan of the book. And the illustrations are so cool.

Happy Reading and Merry Christmas!

Sunday, December 9, 2007

Lloyd Dobler Speech

I've decided that I'm going to memorize Lloyd Dobler's speech from Say Anything so that I'll be equipped with an answer the next time someone feels the need to ask me why in the world I'm going into education as a career.

Here's Lloyd's speech -

I don't want to sell anything, buy anything, or process anything as a career. I don't want to sell anything bought or processed, or buy anything sold or processed, or process anything sold, bought, or processed, or repair anything sold, bought, or processed. You know, as a career, I don't want to do that.


So Maria, Jon, and I went to Spaghetti Mama's this weekend. And the number one super fun waiter in all of Utah, possibly in all of the Western U.S., Joe, hooked us up with some free drinks. I guess we went a little crazy. It turned out to be the perfect night for some free drinks though, 'cause Jon was a bit thirsty...Keep in mind that there were only three of us at the table. Oh, and if you're ever at Spaghetti Mama's, be sure to try out the Lime Italian Soda, very tasty. Thanks Joe!

Stream of Whatever

Here's a random photo booth picture of me along with a dose of T.S. Eliot. I figured a random photo of myself and some deep thoughts from Eliot would be the perfect remedy for those Sunday night blues that you may or may not be having. Either way, I do what I can to share the wealth.

This is the last part of T.S. Eliot's Little Gidding. The first four lines of this excerpt have always been really meaningful for me. These lines also appear at the very beginning of one of my favorite movies, Run Lola Run. Hmmm, T.S. Eliot and an indie German flick, the perfect combo. Enjoy...

We shall not cease from exploration
And the end of all our exploring
Will be to arrive where we started
And know the place for the first time.
Through the unknown, unremembered gate
When the last of earth left to discover
Is that which was the beginning;
At the source of the longest river
The voice of the hidden waterfall
And the children in the apple-tree
Not known, because not looked for
But heard, half-heard, in the stillness
Between two waves of the sea.
Quick now, here, now, always—
A condition of complete simplicity
(Costing not less than everything)
And all shall be well and
All manner of thing shall be well
When the tongues of flame are in-folded
Into the crowned knot of fire
And the fire and the rose are one.

Monday, December 3, 2007


This past week I found out that I got accepted into Weber State's Master of Education program. I'm really excited about starting school at Weber State, or Webes as I affectionately call it. I haven't been in school for so long that I'm not quite sure how I'm gonna handle it. I mean, I found out I got in and was really happy about it right after I heard, but then a couple minutes later I started feeling a little bit terrified about the whole thing. I had this "Oh man, what have I gotten myself into" type of feeling. There are so many things I need to do before school starts, and I have about a month to do it. So tomorrow morning I'm planning on going up to campus to figure a few things out. I haven't even had time to buy the proper school supplies. My old Trapper Keeper is completely wrecked...Its velcro is totally not sticking the way it should, so I'll probably head on over to the store to pick up a couple new ones tomorrow. Oh, I need a new pencil box and some more highlighters, 'cause I love highlighting things. You know, the simple act of starting a list of necessary school supplies is making me feel a lot better already...This master's program is gonna be a piece of cake. Speaking of cake, I figure that if I end up hating the program at Webes, I can always sign up for some culinary arts classes at the Art Institute down in Draper. Maria recently reminded me of my long-time dream of becoming a famous chef, so I'm leaning on culinary arts as my Plan B. It's always a good idea to have a Plan B, right?