Monday, December 31, 2007

Last night...


Last night we had the community Interfaith concert. In preparation, I got to associate with two great choir directors, Sandi and Maggie. We even were in the paper with a very nice write up! (Eeek! I had no idea that the picture would be that big.) I had chosen four songs, three for our choir and one for the big group number. They were "Away in a Manger" arr. Mack Wilberg, "Good Christians, All Rejoice" arr. Gilbert Martin, "This is the Christ" arr. Darwin Wolford, and the group number, Silent Night arr. Doug Bush.

I had the privilege of conducting our choir and I am so proud of them. It was so fun working with them over the last month or so. It was like the angels were singing. I could not believe the sound they produced -- they blew me away! It was so beautiful. The best part was you could really feel the spirit as they sang. It was quite overpowering. IMHO, the event was a success. I am already thinking about what we can do for next year.

Friday, December 28, 2007

The lights at Temple Square

We had the opportunity to go to Utah just before Christmas for my brother's commissioning as an officer in the Army. One of the things on my list to do was to take the kids to see the lights on Temple Square. As usual, they were breathtaking, but it was even more spectacular seeing it through my children's eyes. The night was clear (and cold) with a beautiful moon. We all loved seeing the life sized nativity scenes and hearing the story from Luke. The lights were everywhere and the buildings seemed to radiate. There was a beautiful spirit there as we took in the the sights. I especially loved seeing the Christus through the window of the visitor's center. The temple is incredible and I am so grateful for those beautiful covenants and blessings we receive within those sacred walls. Ken kept wondering when I would put down the camera, but it was all so beautiful! Here are a few of my favorites....

The annual Rochelle and Carli Christmas bash...

Four years ago, Rochelle and I hosted a Christmas dinner party as a farewell to our dear friends, the DeBrys, who were moving to Idaho. That started a wonderful and fun tradition of our having a Christmas party each year. The only problem is that neither of our houses are big enough to truly invite all the people we would like to. :) Somehow we narrowed the list down to 20 or so couples and we had a great turnout. People were asking us when the party was before we had even set the date. It made us both feel good that people were looking forward to it.

Thanks to everyone, there was a lovely smorgasbord of delicious treats. One of the highlights of the evening was the slightly irreverent, but totally hilarious white elephant gift exchange. Some items were back for the third year in a row! Best of all was the opportunity to dress up a little, have an evening out sans kiddos, and get to visit with friends. When the ward split we thought we would still see each other all the time, but that has proven more difficult than we thought. It was so great to catch up with our friends that we don't get to see all the time. I hope everyone had as fun a night as I did.

One of the things that Rochelle and I kept talking about as we cleaned up after the party was the wonderful friends that we share. We are so blessed to have amazing people in our lives that show us beautiful examples of love, kindness, and service. I can hardly wait until next year!

The group photo (sorry some people left before we took this.)

Thursday, December 27, 2007

It happens every year...

Every December I try to remember one word... SIMPLIFY! Every year I seem to fail and this year was no different. But there were some (small) areas where I think I did pretty well.
  1. Instead of hand-making our Christmas card, I got one of those photo cards. (I even used the time in the car on our trip to Utah to put on the back letter. Great use of time, huh?)
  2. Our neighbor/friend gift I kept simple, (especially since we do over 30!) but cute and useful.
  3. One Monday after our Triple Trio performances, I went out to lunch with some of the ladies from the group. I totally ignored reality and the many things I had going on and thoroughly enjoyed being with some of my amazing friends.
My biggest regret is that I did not get the time to truly tell my dear friends how I feel about them. I guess I am pretty cheesy, very emotional and I feel things very deeply and intensely. I don't always tell people how much I care for them and how much they mean to me because I don't want to freak them out and make them feel uncomfortable. I think that at Christmastime I can get away with sharing those feelings without being too much of a freak. This year, I was so busy that didn't really take that opportunity as I would have liked to. I am so blessed to have so many amazing people in my life, especially incredible women! I can't quite get over the caliber of people that I get to associate with. I don't think they will ever know, and I am sure I could never adequately express, the profound impact they have on my life. I regret that missed opportunity. Maybe I can make that part of my New Years celebration?

In any case, things are finally getting to the point where I can finally breathe again. It has been a wonderful month full of exciting (and some exhausting) things. I have many posts to catch up on and I look forward to doing that very soon. I hope all of you had a very merry Christmas!

Wednesday, December 12, 2007

she is so smart...

Last night as I was getting Peyton ready for bed after her bath, I was asking her about animal noises. I was surprised how many she knew. I thought it was so adorable that I had to take a video today for posterity. She sometimes mixes up chicken and birdie, but other than than she does a pretty great job. My favorites are the lion and the piggy -- apparently "oink" can be difficult to say and I LOVE her result! As special bonus footage, I added on another lion saying; makes me laugh every time I watch that. Doesn't this make you want to go on a field trip to a zoo and a farm?

video

Saturday, December 8, 2007

'Tis the season...

As any musician knows, there are many opportunities for performing during the holiday season. Last night Triple Trio performed at a ward Christmas party. We had a blast getting our program ready and we look forward to performing it several more times this years. In any case, here are a few of our numbers. Enjoy! (Sorry about the background noise.)

video
Rise Up Shepherd and Follow

video
What Child is This

video
Sleigh Ride

Thursday, December 6, 2007

The speech...

I thought the speech Governor Romney made this morning was incredible! He used such beautiful and inspiring language. By all accounts I've seen, he wrote the speech himself. I encourage everyone that didn't get to see it to make sure you do.

We truly live in a blessed nation! The Founding Fathers were inspired men. I am so grateful to be a citizen of this great land.

A personal connection...

The other day I was catching up on some of the Mitt blogs that I go to. I was reading on Evangelicals for Mitt, when I recognized the name Reed Fisher in a post. I followed the link and found an entry with pictures that showed our good family friend and former Bishop. His neighborhood was really affected by the San Diego fires and the Fishers (just barely) were able to keep their home. The huge tree in the front yard was not so lucky and was burned. Someone had called from church to ask if any help was needed. Brother Fisher mentioned that he needed help removing the stump and roots of the tree. He was told there would be people there to help 7:00 am the next morning. Well, one of the people that went to help was Matt Romney and his dad who was in town tagged along to help! Without any press or entourage Mitt took a chain saw and did his best with the others to remove that darn stump.

I bet the Fishers were surprised that someone running for the highest office in the land would show up to help them. I think this shows the type of man the Governor Romney is. Just another reason I support him.

I wish I were tech savvy so I could post the links to blogs for pictures and a more detailed account. In any case, you can check out...
www.mittromney.com (go to the five brothers blog and scroll down to a day in the life)
www.evangelicalsformitt.com
http://mydryfly.wordpress.com
www.mymanmitt.com (go into the archives for 11/25 - 12/2)

Tuesday, December 4, 2007

Elbow, elbow, wrist, wrist...

The past two weekends I got to sing with Triple Trio on a Christmas float sponsored by the Longs Peak Ward in our stake. The Friday after Thanksgiving we sang in the Estes Park Festival of Lights Parade. It was super cold -- I'm talking the low teens with a nice breeze! It was a wonderful experience and there were some really beautiful floats. The one we sang on had a live nativity scene with Mary, Joseph, a baby, and the three wise men. We sang carols about the Savior. I really enjoyed seeing people's faces light up as we passed. (Don't worry. The feeling eventually came back in my fingers and toes.) Last Saturday we sang in the Lyons parade. The float even won first prize for best float! I loved this opportunity and getting to participate in some great community traditions. Merry Christmas!

Wednesday, November 28, 2007

Debate tonight...

Just a quick reminder that there is a You Tube debate tonight at 6:00 (my time) on CNN.

Mitt in '08

Tuesday, November 27, 2007

NYC

We had a wonderful (long) weekend get-away to New York City without the kids. Neither Ken or myself had ever been there before and we were totally excited. The one black mark on our trip was the stagehand strike that closed all of the Broadway shows we had tickets for. Luckily, we were able to get tickets for 25th Annual Putnam County Spelling Bee. It was fantastic! We also saw a couple of off-Broadway shows that were entertaining.

Everything else we loved. We got to visit my awesome friend Celia! She was kind enough to let us stay with her and show us around the city. The buildings were absolutely incredible! The concerts were fantastic! The cheesecake...oh the cheesecake! I also loved getting caught up with some great friends from High School. We saw Norris Chappell and his wife Jen, Carlos Fernandez, Brittany Mayer (and met her boyfriend Sean), and Dan Rigazzi. We also saw where Ken's grandparents were buried at a beautiful cemetery. I loved it all!

I could write a ton, but the pictures can say it better than me. So here goes...

Sunday, November 25, 2007

Interfaith choir...

I have the opportunity to direct the stake interfaith choir at church. Our stake is hosting a Christmas choir concert where our choir as well as choirs from other churches come and perform and then we will sing a song all together at the end (Silent Night). The concert will be on December 30th and I am really excited about it. I got to choose the music that our choir is performing and they are awesome pieces. We are preparing the Wilberg arrangement of Away in a Manger, the Martin arrangement of Good Christians, All Rejoice (it totally rocks!), and This is the Christ. Each song has a different feeling, but all bear beautiful testimony of the Savior.

Tonight was our first rehearsal. I was really worried about the number of people we would have, especially considering it was a holiday weekend and some people would still be out of town. I was afraid that only 15 people would be there tonight. I had a goal for a choir of at least 50, but of course would love as many as we could get. I was completely blown away. We had about 60 there tonight and I know more that are planning to join us! What a blessing and an answer to prayers.

I was also impressed with the sound we got. We have got a bit to go before we are truly making music, but I think we were all catching the vision of what the songs could be. Fantastic!

On a personal note -- I really love directing choirs! I love working with Ken. He is an incredible accompanist! In so many facets of my life I feel like I am a complete loser, but that goes away when I am up rehearsing and directing a choir. I get so jazzed about what we can produce together. A beautiful collaborative art! I feel so blessed to be able to serve in this capacity. I hope everything will go well and the event will be a success so that it can become a community tradition.

Wednesday, November 21, 2007

Romney meeting...

On Saturday, November 10th we had the opportunity to hear Josh Romney, the son of Mitt and Ann Romney speak at a lunch in Lafayette. We also had the chance to hear congressman Bob Beauprez speak about why he was supporting Romney. He spoke from the point of personally known and having worked with each of the republican candidates. He said one of the "tests" he applied was who he would want as a next door neighbor. He spoke of the Romney family, Mitt's work ethic, and his track record of success. He had some fantastic points.



Josh gave some family insights. My favorite two stories show about his dad's priorities. Josh told of a time when he asked his dad for some money to go to the movies. He joked how that was a big mistake. He said his dad asked for a detailed account of what he needed the money for and then gave him about half the amount he had asked for. He said after that he always went to his mom for money. :) His punchline was how he can't wait for Washington to try and ask his dad for money for some of their pet projects.

Another story Josh shared was when his second child was being born. They were living in Boston at the time and had made arrangements for his mom to watch their oldest daughter when his wife went into labor. Unfortunately, when his wife went into labor, his mom Ann was so sick that she couldn't take care of their little two year old. So he called his dad (who was governor of Mass. at the time) to see if he could help. He said that his dad immediately said he could pick up the little girl (complete with police escort), and take care of her throughout the night, made her a lunch for the next day and dropped her off at the hospital to meet her new sibling. To me that really demonstrates his priorities.

Family pictures...

A couple of weeks ago we had our friend Becky Payne take some family pictures for us. We got some pretty good shots, especially of the kiddos. I have some photoshopping to do to get that perfect shot, but I hope you enjoy what we have so far.

On a vacation...

I know it has been awhile since I have posted, but I have some pretty good reasons. I got sick, packed a weeks worth of teaching into 3 days, and got ready for our trip to New York City. So being my rather anal, I mean organized, self I will make several posts in chronological order. So be prepared to get caught up on the lives of the Siders'.

Friday, November 9, 2007

Today is the day...

This evening at 6:30 is our first community meeting in support of Mitt Romney for President. John will be speaking with us and letting us know what we can do to get involved. I am guessing it will last about an hour with some refreshments and mingling afterward. (I am so looking forward to that pumpkin cheesecake!) If you read this, are in the area, and somehow I did not invite you, please feel free to stop by. See you tonight!

Mitt in '08!

Thursday, November 8, 2007

My little bro Clint is just a big teddy bear...

Maybe you need to have an certain amount of appreciation for the military, but I thought this was totally classic and so fitting my brother (for those of you that don't know, Clint is in the Army, stationed in Korea, and soon to be heading to Iraq). I just got an email from him and his signature at the bottom reads...

"Be polite, be professional, and have a plan to kill everyone you meet."
-MG Zilmer, USMC

Love it! It is perfect for Clint!

Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Yan can cook, I can SING...

Today I headed down to Denver for my voice lesson with Mary Ann. I am still a little frustrated with my first bridge, although it is getting much stronger. It is just that darn G! Today we tried some new things that really seemed to work. We were both pretty jazzed! I even had to do my little dance of joy. :) I still have a lot more practice and playing around with what we did today to really make it stick. And truth be told, I need to figure out exactly what I was doing. In any case though, we were thrilled with the results. I have often had a difficult time because of my bigger voice, but today I figured out how to let my big voice open up without carrying up the weight. The resulting sound was beautiful (if I do say so myself) and I loved singing like that. I have never had that big of a sound before with so little (physical) effort. (It was however a ton of mental work and a lot of concentration.) I got one of those precious glimpses where I realize that I can do this and I can be good. (She even uttered the phrase "professional singer!?!") It feels so good to be on the right track after a 12 year detour. Hopefully I can understand and implement all that we did today. I know this process is going to take a lot more time, but it is totally worth it. I don't always feel like this, but today, I can SING!

Tuesday, November 6, 2007

Things I love...

1. I love that after 11 and a half years of marriage Ken can still leave me light headed and woozy after a good kiss.

2. I love that Trevor still wants to hold my hand when we walk to pick up Morgan at school.

3. I love watching the progress in my voice students and knowing that I am able to help someone reach for their potential!

4. I love listening to Morgan read.

5. I love Peyton's laugh!

6. I love the smell of fresh clean laundry -- too bad I have to fold it all :).

7. I love that I have a friend that would say Absostinkinglutely!

8. I love that I can love so many and so much. I am truly blessed!

Saturday, November 3, 2007

Jessica Alba...

I think this might be a stretch. What do you think?

Thursday, November 1, 2007

As cute as a bug...

Peyton got a huge haul of candy last night for her first time out trick or treating. Our hypothesis? She was just so cute in her ladybug costume! In fact all the kids looked cute. We did Morgan's hair in a ton of braids the night before so her hair would be wavy like Hermione. She had a blast with her Fall celebration at school including a breakfast in her class. Trevor made an excellent Scooby Doo. Last night they were so excited to go out with dad while I manned the front door. They had so much fun!

Check out the blonde antenna! :)

Preschool parade...


On Tuesday Trevor and his preschool class got to do a mini parade and song program for the moms. He is just too funny. A little squirrely perhaps, but pretty durn cute. He took his role a the leader of the parade very seriously. Then it was time to sing the songs they had learned. I got a clip of the boys singing the five little pumpkins. Trevor loves to sing and totally cracks me up. I wish I had half of the energy he has...

video

Monday, October 29, 2007

Mom's advice...

Last night I did something I never do. I went to bed early. Yep. I was in bed at 9:00! I took my mom's counsel and just went to bed. :) I think my crazy schedule is starting to catch up with me. I keep pretty busy. Take this week as an example; I taught about 20 students this week, rehearsed and performed with Triple Trio, took Trevor to his doctor appointment, attended a meeting for the interfaith choir which I am directing, attended book club, spent all day at super Saturday, stayed up late preparing all four (two of them big) projects that I was in charge of for super Saturday, passed out candy at the trunk or treat, attended a Halloween party, ran tons of errands, watched friends' kids, did my visiting teaching, phone calls for volunteering for Mitt's campaign, plus all those house things that never seem to get done. I think I was tired in every way that I could be tired -- physically, emotionally, and even spiritually.

I did take some time yesterday to listen again to Elder Oaks conference talk about good, better, and best. I am trying to figure out how I can apply it to me. I truly love most of what I do, but I am a little overwhelmed. Good thing I followed mom's advice yesterday. Things don't feel quite so daunting with a good night's sleep under my belt.

Wednesday, October 24, 2007

Ken's turn...

I am so glad that Ken took a little time and had a guys weekend. He totally deserved it; he spends so much of his time working or doing church stuff. The weekend included eating lots of meat (Rodizio Grill), hanging with friends, watching movies, more eating, shopping, and going to the BYU football game. At the game, my brother Cyle who is part of the "cannon crew," arranged for them to fire off the cannon at the 4th touchdown. It was a highlight of the game and and even got them their .8 seconds of fame. It was so fun seeing them on TV -- thank goodness for slow motion! :) The game ended with a blizzard of excitement, literally, with a huge cougar win (42-7). He was even a nice guy and drove home my friend's van from Utah (remember the car trouble we had a few weeks ago on our trip...). I was so glad he got a mini vacation with some great friends. No one could deserve it more!

Tuesday, October 23, 2007

Jog-a-thon...

Last Friday Morgan participated in the jog-a-thon at school. (Sorry, we realized the wrong date was initially written on our calendar.) She was very excited about it and practiced running everywhere we went. She did a great job and ran 11 laps! She had a fun time and felt really proud of herself. Here are some pictures from the event.

Sunday, October 21, 2007

On our toes...

"As I sit and watch the snow fallin' down..."

Thinking of this song this morning (Duke Ellington, also recorded by Norah Jones) as the snow is flying outside. This is just one of the reasons that I love Colorado. Yesterday it was sunny and 80 degrees today it is in the 30s and it is snowing. Colorado weather sure keeps you on your toes. :)

Friday, October 19, 2007

One of my favorite days of the year...

I love this time of year! I especially love the day when it is finally cool enough to put my cuddly flannel sheets on the bed. They are a wonderful, brick red and they always make me feel like snuggling in for a long winter's nap. I love being toasty while I sleep. Happy flannel sheet day! (I don't think that is an official day of celebration, but it should be.)

Tuesday, October 16, 2007

I am a volunteer!

For those that have been reading my blog you will probably not be surprised to learn that I am a volunteer for the Mitt Romney for President campaign here in Colorado. I have never done anything like this before, but I am inspired and believe that Mitt can really make a difference. I am a community group leader for the tri-town area, Mead, Brighton, and Ft. Lupton.

In the community groups we will...
- help keep each other up to date on what is happening in the campaign
- encourage regular donations (however small or large)
- give handouts, flyers, bumper stickers, etc.
- organize members to attend public events (like parades or fairs)
- become more informed and educated about the political process

Is there anyone in our area that would like to join my group or become a group leader yourself? I am hoping in the next 2 or 3 weeks to have John, who is over the volunteers in Colorado, come and make a presentation to our group. The meeting will be at my house and yes, we will be having refreshments. :) If you would like for me to add you to my group list, please let me know in the comments section or just give me a call. I am hoping that we will have lots of support for Mitt here in Colorado and especially in our area.

I should tell you why I am supporting Mitt for president. First off, he has incredible executive experience in business, the Olympics, and in politics. He has shown a record of stepping into a problematic situation and turning it around. He has help saved companies like Staples, Dominoes, and sports Authority. He took the 2002 Winter Olympics that was scandal ridden and in debt and turned it a successful event that had showed a profit. He got elected as a Republican in Massachusetts and was able to work with the democrats to lower taxes and bring jobs to the state. I love how he approaches problems with a level head looking at it from all sides. I believe that he has common sense solutions to our country's problems. His vast experience as a business leader will be helpful as we deal with all the emerging markets in Asia. If there is anyone who could help streamline our bloated government, it is Mitt. He is a wonderful family man and stands for traditional, conservative values. I think that he would be a wonderful president and a very effective leader. Vote Mitt in '08!!!

Birthday Boy...


My little boy is growing up. He is now an official four year old. He asked me as I was putting him to bed if a four year old is a "big kid?" He was thrilled when I told that I thought being four certainly did qualify. :)

Many little things remind me he is getting bigger. A very obvious clue was when he put on some jeans this morning (which he hadn't worn for a couple of months) and he came in and told me they were too small. Sure enough, they were not even close to being buttoned and the hem had "shrunk" a couple of inches. It is also the little things though. For the past two years, no matter how much we worked with him, he has always called Morgan, "Norgan." Then on Saturday, out of the blue it seemed, he started pronouncing it correctly. I was excited for him, but kind of sad too. It seems the end of an era.

We had a very fun (but we kept it quite low key) party on Saturday (what he kept calling his "pretend birthday"). He wanted a Scooby Doo party. He invited about eight guests plus "the cousins." (It is so fantastic having them close now.) We played, got Scooby Doo tattoos, decorated scooby snacks, and ate a yummy chocolate cake. Everyone had a great time.

Monday, October 15, 2007

A perfect day...

A perfect day for the zoo! Morgan didn't have school today and it was Trevor's birthday (as opposed to his "pretend birthday," Saturday, which was the day of his birthday party) so we decided to have a fun day. It was simply one of those perfect Colorado days. The zoo was pretty empty despite the beautiful day. The leaves had changed colors and some had begun to fall -- just enough to make that wonderful crunching sound beneath your feet. The air was crisp with that subtle hint of fall. The sky was a stunning electric blue. Everything seemed to be in technicolor. The sunlight was warm and soft. Our pace was slow enough to really SEE everything, including that preying mantis that crossed our path. A delicious day for the senses!

The animals seemed to want to be out on a day like this. We got some great pictures. We saw the baby zebra and baby giraffe. So cute. The kids loved running around and riding on the train.

At the end of the day we met Ken at Cinzetti's for dinner. Trevor got to choose what/where he wanted to go for dinner. Everyone loved the pasta and the crepes. I'm not sure if Peyton could have gotten any messier while eating -- must have been good!

All in all, a perfect day.




Side note: If I believed in reincarnation, I would totally want to be a bear in the zoo. Someone else would be preparing my meals and cleaning my home. My biggest responsibility for the day would be hanging out and taking a nap in the sun while gaining weight for the winter. That would be sweet! (I guess deep down I am totally lazy, or at least I would like to be.)

Kinda a nerd...


NerdTests.com says I'm an Uber Cool Light-Weight Nerd.  What are you?  Click here!

Friday, October 12, 2007

For The Office fans out there...



Which Office Character Are You?

You are Pam. You are sweet and likable, but your shyness makes it hard for you to express yourself sometimes. Regardless, you are always there for your friends and will usually come out of your shell to help anyone.
Find Your Character @ BrainFall.com

Thursday, October 11, 2007

Me and Mitt!!!



Yesterday I got to go hear Governor Mitt Romney at a Town Hall event down at Denver University. He gave an energetic speech then he took questions from the audience. there were some great questions asked; Iraq, line item veto, gay discrimination, health care, and a few others. Not exactly softball questions. I wish I had been brave enough to ask the question I had, but I was sure I would word it badly.

In any case, I was such a treat to hear him speak live and to shake his hand. Now more than ever I want to get involved and start putting my money (and effort) where my mouth is.

Scrapaway 2007...


What a wonderful weekend! I have looked forward to scrapaway all year. On Thursday we caravaned to Utah and made it there safe and sound (despite a little car trouble -- Lyman is so beautiful!). Enjoyed a yummy pork salad at Cafe Rio and visited Temple Square. I had the opportunity to stay with my dear friend Libby on Thursday night and we talked 'til we dropped. On Friday we hit a great scrapbook store and then I got to meet my family that was in town at one of my favorite restaurants, The Brick Oven. I got to do a little shopping at the BYU bookstore -- BYU t-shirts for the kids :) -- before we headed up the canyon to Heber.

The farmhouse we stayed in was perfect! A huge loft work area, comfortable beds (not that I spent much time there), and Marci provided us with incredible meals. It was so great to have hours at a time to focus on my projects. It was also fantastic to get in some much needed "therapy" with friends. I was so blessed to be joined by such incredible friends that are so fun to be with and to talk to. We also got to listen to conference and have our spiritual cups filled as well.

I got a big chunk of Peyton's baby book done and I also started a 8x8 album of all our family portraits. I thought that would be a fun way to catch a glimpse of how our family has and is changing over the years. As usual, I never get as much done as I would like. Pesky things like eating and sleeping (and being super sick one night, but that is another story) took up some time too. :) I already am counting down the days until next year. I am so grateful for my loving husband who encouraged me to go while he took care of our kids. Thank you Ken!!!

Hope you like some of the pages/layouts I did...


The Debate...

I thought the debate on Tuesday went rather well, but not anything that was really new. I was completely unimpressed by Fred's debut, especially when compared to Mitt and Rudy. There were some great answers and I loved the side debate with Mitt and Rudy. I think it is time for some of the others to go. It is so difficult to get into specifics when you only have a minute to answer.

I am a little frustrated about the reports out there that are mocking Mitt's answer about talking to his lawyers. I think he answered the question just fine. He was asked about what involving congress and of course that is a legal matter. That has very little to do with acting under an immediate threat. I do think that under such a situation that he would be able to make a pragmatic, well thought out, and cool headed decision. I really admire someone that can keep their wits about them.

So little time...

I have lots of wonderful things that are going on, but no time to post them. I will soon, so be ready for an onslaught! :)

Tuesday, October 9, 2007

the great communicator?!?

I am losing count how many times Fred Thompson has said "uh."

Monday, October 8, 2007

Links...

Recently, I have found out so many people that I know are blogging. I love tuning into my friends blogs and reading about what they are up to -- even though I may just have talked to them on the phone. :) Helps me get to know them in a new way. I love it!!!

(If anyone does not want me to link to them, just let me know and I will remove you.)

Mitt stuff...


I am so excited to start volunteering for Governor Romney's campaign! (More on that later...) For those in the Denver area, there will be an Ask Mitt Anything event on this Wednesday, October 10th at 3:40. I will be driving down, for anyone that would like to go with me. The event is free (except for paying for parking). This will be a fantastic opportunity to hear him speak and answer questions from the audience (especially a day following the GOP debate.)

DEBATE REMINDER: Economics debate on Tuesday. 4:00 EDT (or 2:00 in my neck of the woods) on CNBC (directv channel 355). Should be very enlightening to see Fred Thompson in his first presidential debate.


Wednesday, October 3, 2007

Great song...

It's true. I can be a romantic sap. Listening to a little Natalie Cole and was reminded of one of my favorite songs from college. I love the lyrics! I mean, who hasn't felt like this at some point? The combination of music and great lyrics always say things better than I could ever express...

"I'm gonna laugh you right out of my life,
Laugh, and forget this affair
Guess I was foolish
To care.

So I'm gonna dance you right out of my dreams,
Try to be carefree and gay
I guess I'll learn to play
The part.

'cause when our friends begin that
Heartless rumor,
I know I'll really need my
Sense of humor.

I'm gonna laugh you right out of my life,
Make it a beautiful joke.
No one will know you broke
My heart.

But if I find you and I
Really meant that last goodbye,
Then I'm gonna laugh so hard,
I'll cry."

Sunday, September 30, 2007

Is there such a thing as "papers anonymous?"

"Hello. My name is Carli and I am a paperaholic."

Okay. I will admit it. I have a serious addiction. I love 12x12 scrapbook paper! The beautiful colors, patterns, and textures make me go a little light headed. When I see a delicious collection of paper I literally salivate. It is so embarrassing to keep wiping my mouth as I walk up and down the rows of gorgeous paper.

Last night after the Relief Society broadcast I went to a crop at Keepsakes and Memories. (Thanks Sharon!) I could hardly contain myself! I know I have plenty of paper, but I could not stop myself. I have some new favorites: Cloud 9 Design, Heidi Grace designs, and Daisy Bucket designs. I think I showed remarkable restraint by not taking it ALL home.

When I did get home and finally got to sleep (not until 4:00 am - Rochelle I don't know how you do it?!?) I kept dreaming of paper. Yummy colors, beautiful patterns, and tantalizing textures were in my dreams. I was creating adorable layouts and classic cards like a scrapbooking machine! A crop at the store was the perfect inspiration to get my creative juices flowing! I am so excited for scrapaway next week!!!

Changes...

Well today marked a new phase for our family. Ken has been called to be the first counselor in the bishopric. Knowing him like I do, I was not surprised, but I was hoping it would be a few more years before it happened. I am sure he will do beautifully, despite his concerns. He has such a desire to do what is right and do it as well as he possibly can. His humble acceptance has made my love increase for him more than I anticipated. I will sustain and support him. I have ultimate confidence in his abilities, but I have many concerns about mine. With Ken sitting up on the stand, I am not quite sure how I am going to manage 3 small children (especially that three year old boy) by myself. (I apologize in advance to my ward.) He had lots of church meetings before, but now he will have MEETINGS! So many wives that I know seem totally at ease with changes like this and have total faith that their family will be blessed; I am not so sure I am one of those. Maybe one of the blessings that I will receive is my faith being increased. Like always, I will play the hand I have been dealt the best I can. I just hope I do it with the grace, patience, and long-suffering of the many, many who have done it before and are currently "church widows." I know this is want the Lord desires of us and I pray I won't disappoint Him. I will miss my husband though...

Wednesday, September 26, 2007

I got some complaints...

I heard from a few people that said I needed a new picture on my blog (and facebook). While the other picture was nice, it did not capture the me they know and love. (I thought it showed me "musing" and was therefore quite fitting.) So yesterday I took what I hope will be a more acceptable photo -- a self portrait if you will. Hopefully this will do until I can get Becky to take a real picture.

Other opinions and feedback?

Tuesday, September 25, 2007

What happened to my baby...

At this time, six years ago, I was in the hospital in the full throws of labor. After many hours of pain, two failed epidurals, and finding out I needed to have a c-section, Morgan Colleen finally arrived. That seems like a lifetime ago.

I am so grateful Morgan was born into our family! She is so much fun and we love her so much. I am constantly amazed at how quickly she is growing up. She is very mature and often is mistaken for a year or two older than she is. I am impressed by her easy going attitude, her quick, infectious laugh, and her ability to make friends. She really is a delight to be around. Even when the drama queen in her comes out -- I'm telling you, she gets that trait from her dad. :) Morgan is a great big sister: she lets Trevor tag a long with her and her friends and she is a wonderful help with Peyton. I truly can't imagine our family without her.

Unfortunately, she got sick and was not able to go to school today. A big disappointment because she was going to take cupcakes and Ken was going to be at school to be a "Watchdog" (a dads program). Oh well, there is always tomorrow. We are also looking forward to her horse birthday party on Saturday! Still trying to figure out how to do a horse cake!?!

Happy birthday my dear, sweet, beautiful girl!


Then... Six years ago



Now... Showing off that missing tooth!

Monday, September 24, 2007

Rain, rain...

I love the rain! Especially this cool rain that lets you know that autumn is in the air. I heard it start just as I was falling asleep about 1:00 last night. It was literally pounding at 6:00 am when I woke up. Of course, I rolled right over and went back to sleep. I find rainy mornings to be the perfect time to cuddle up with Ken and resist the temptation of getting out of bed until the last possible second.

I have many great rain memories. I remember having a picnic on our foyer floor in Scotland and having the doors wide open to watch the storm outside. I remember the gentle rain while swimming with friends at the Officers' pool (no lightening). I remember the torrents that would come down during the typhoons on Okinawa. I remember the rain and the mist that would totally envelop "Y" mountain while at BYU. So many memories...

I LOVE THE RAIN.

Sunday, September 23, 2007

Scary thought...

This afternoon while in church Trevor leans over to me and starts rubbing his arms, tummy, and legs. He proceeds to say, "I wish I had a hundred mouths, then I could talk all over!" This from the boy who makes noise all day. (No kidding, he loves to hear himself talk!) This from the boy who could eat all day. This from the boy who loves to tease his sisters. One hundred mouths?!? Oh what a nightmare that would be!

Friday, September 21, 2007

The Rhapsody...

What could be better than a weekday date with my hottie of a husband? Not much, I dare say. Last night we attended the opening night of the Colorado Symphony Orchestra at Boettcher Concert Hall. One of my favorite pieces of all time, Rachmaninoff’s Rhapsody on a Theme of Paganini was played by Van Cliburn winner Olga Kern (we saw her in a solo recital last spring and were completely impressed) and conducted by Jeffrey Kahane. It was an incredible performance!

This was my first time hearing the Rhapsody live and I was overwhelmed. The themes in the piece are so lush. There is a depth and range of emotions throughout that totally touches my soul. There is so much beauty in that piece it was hard to breathe. And what can I say about the 18th variation? There was such grace and sensitivity as Ms. Kern played it. I love Rachmaninoff's music!

Boettcher Hall is really fun to go to because it is set up in the round. We sat in my favorite seats at the back of the orchestra. I LOVE watching the conductor. I had never seen Jeffrey Kahane conduct before and he was amazing! Every movement was so clear and easy to follow. I think he is my new favorite conductor (Sorry Keith!). It was so interesting, during the Tchaikovsky's 5th symphony he even put down his baton for the 2nd and 3rd movements. I have never seen an orchestra conductor do that before! (I do think it was completely warranted by the music. I would had a difficult conducting that piece with a baton.) He was awesome!

Wednesday, September 19, 2007

I have been tagged...

Micaela has tagged me to answer some questions about me. So here it goes...

4 jobs I have had:
1. Voice teacher
2. Choir teacher (yes that counts as a separate thing)
3. Microfilmer
4. Singing janitor (I feel I must explain. For my first two years at BYU I was one of the custodians for the administration building. I had a tendency to sing while I worked, especially when I was on bathroom duty. You can't buy acoustics like that. :) In fact the university president, Rex E. Lee, once heard me and came in to tell me that I had a lovely voice. It was not long before I was known as the singing janitor.)

4 movies I could watch over and over: (really though, I love movies and would watch just about anything over and over again)
1. Pride and Prejudice (especially the new one. oh, I love that soundtrack!)
2. Willow (one of the best quoting movies of all time)
3. An Ideal Husband
4. Romantic comedies

Places I have lived: (a lot more than 4 and since this is my blog, I'm going to list them all)
1. Pensacola, FL
2. Twentynine Palms, CA
3. Reno, NV
4. Okinawa, Japan
5. Dunoon, Scotland
6. Reno (again)
7. Lawton, OK
8. Twentynine Palms (again)
9. Glen Ellyn, IL
10. Quantico, VA
11. Okinawa (again)
12. San Diego, CA
13. Provo, UT
14. Fallon, NV
15. Ft. Sill, OK
16. Longmont, CO
17. Firestone, CO

4 Favorite TV shows: (I am assuming this means current shows)
1. The Office
2. 24
3. Heroes
4. Lost

4 Favorite foods:
1. Cheesecake
2. Steak and potatoes
3. Fettuccini Alfredo
4. Ken's blueberry milkshakes

4 Websites I visit:
1. Mitt websites: My Man Mitt, Evangelicals for Mitt, and several others
2. Real Clear Politics
3. Facebook
4. Friends' blogs

4 Places I'd rather be:
1. Scrapaway!
2. In bed
3. On Broadway
4. Trotting the globe (does that count as one?)

4 old boyfriends you wonder "what in the world ever happened to ____" about:
1. Just four?!? :)
2.
3.
4.

4 people I tag next:
1. Rochelle
2. Ashley
3. Kacy
4. Karin

P.S. Check out Micaela's answers on her blog (link on right). She is much funnier than I am.

Another lesson...

Went to my second voice lesson with Mary Ann today. I really feel comfortable with her and feel I can learn a lot from her. Had an "a-ha" moment today. She was telling me about one of her experiences with Seth and while she was talking I was thinking, "oh boy, that is totally me." The gist was that when someone is intuitive about something it is easy to skip to the answer without doing all the the steps in between to actually get there. Guilty as charged.

One of my (many) problems is that the exercises feel great and fairly easy. Then I get to the song and blow it. I have always felt like my big voice has been a blessing and a curse. I am having a difficult time staying light enough in my chest and mix while in a "musical theater sound." I either make it too big or end up singing light classical.

I am still trying to wrap my head around this conundrum: on recordings it sounds like the performers have so much power in that mix area. I associate power with big. So how do they get they power, but keep it easy and light? To get that sound it seems like it should be a lot more work. So far I don't get it -- at least not consistently.

I have a lot more singing and listening to do.

Tuesday, September 18, 2007

A day in my crazy life...

Today was a totally crazy day. I have been in a sprint since I got up this morning. It started when the day was just barely pink and Trevor came and got in bed with us. He was still sick and his fever was raging. I got everyone dressed, fed, and got Morgan off to school. I was just finishing putting on my makeup so I could go to my hair appointment when there was a knock at the door. I had double booked a new student with my haircut. One of those moments when I am oblivious to the fact that the 18th and Tuesday are the same day. Luckily, Erica was able to squeeze me in later and I was able to teach my new student. She is a woman in her 40s that has never sung before. She is taking lessons to surprise her family and be able to jam with her son that plays guitar. So cool! Then lunch for kids. Haircut -- I am loving stepping outside of the "Carli bob." Then off to Costco. Then home at the speed of light to make dinner for us and the wonderful woman that I visit teach who just had a cute baby boy last week. Taught a bunch of lessons, then scarfed down my dinner before dropping off a baby gift, grabbing samples of the projects I am suggesting, and heading to a meeting to finalize Super Saturday. An hour and a half later, I swing by Dairy Queen for a banana cream pie blizzard to split with Ken. Yum. Then time at the computer to write emails and a quick blog update. Now the house is still a mess. (I swear, it started out clean this morning!) So off to put toys away (again), do dishes (again), sweep the floor (again), and put stuff away (AGAIN!). Only to get up for another busy day tomorrow... I barely had time to breathe today, but I want to finish up the day with thinking of some of the things I learned today and am grateful for.
  1. It is so cool to see someone willing to step outside their comfort zone and take the risk of trying something new. I need to do that more.
  2. Costco (need I say more?!?)
  3. Kids that don't feel well like to cuddle and read stories. :)
  4. New babies!!!
  5. Great quote by President Hinckley that was shared at my meeting. "Try a little harder, to be a little better."

Great inspiration. Tomorrow I will try a little harder...

Wednesday, September 12, 2007

Seriously though...

Do they get much cuter than this? Peyton enjoying her morning snack (chocolate teddy grahams).


Girl Power...

Saturday night I was able to attend a fireside where the speaker was Sheri Dew. I helped to organize a great group of women to go all together. There were 13 fantastic women in our group that all headed to the church on Saturday to hear Sis. Dew. She was certainly worth the effort! Her remarks were insightful and I had several "a-ha" moments while I listened to her. I thought I would pass along some of the notes I took.

Righteous women are a crucial part Heavenly Father's plan of salvation and Satan is launching an all out attack on these women. Heavenly Father knows that we are up to the challenge. He saved us for these latter days and knows we can follow through and help build the Kingdom of God. After all, we know the end of the story; God wins and Satan loses.

She told her experience of driving in the middle of the night only to run over a street lamp (the light part) that had fallen and how it totally stopped the progress of her SUV. From this she learned two lessons which she dubs the parable of the street lamp... 1. Usually the things that stop our (spiritual) progress are or start out as small things. 2. Often the answer requires backing up. (repentance and trying again to do it better)

We want to learn to follow Jesus Christ without reservation! Moroni 7:48 talks about the gifts that Heaven Father will give us as we are true followers of His Son. She made it clear that that is what is necessary to receive those gifts, not being popular, baking your own bread, or being a size two. :) So how do we become TRUE followers? She had a list of five points (though she says there are many more).

A True Follower a Jesus Christ is...

  1. Willing to walk away from the world. "Do I look to the Lord or the world for counsel?" She also had these words of advise as we try to decide who to follow "It is always dangerous to take counsel from someone trying to build their own kingdom." (A-HA!)
  2. Absolutely believes that Jesus is the Christ. There is great power in Him as we learn to partake of the Atonement.
  3. Obedient and repents.
  4. A diligent seeker. (Here was a huge a-ha moment for me. She said that many of us know just enough about the gospel to feel guilty and not enough to know the joy. That is totally me. I know I need to work on this area and as I do so I am sure I will find more of the joy that I know is there. It is after all, "good news.")
  5. Seeks to become more and more pure. "Purity is the single biggest step for us hearing the message the Lord has for us through the Holy Ghost."

She concluded with saying, "there is unlimited power and influence in a woman who is a TRUE FOLLOWER."

After the fireside we headed for dessert a Cheesecake Factory. I had the raspberry, lemon cream. It was very delicious, but almost a little too light. Most of all, I was so honored to rub shoulders with the amazing women around me. I am inspired by all they do and especially who they are. I feel very blessed to have them as my friends and have their influence in my life.

Wednesday, September 5, 2007

Debate tonight...

Be sure to tune in for the Republican Debate tonight! 9 pm EDT on Fox news channel.

(As a side note: Fred Thompson is a total coward for missing tonight's debate. Announcing his candidacy the day after. Puhlease! Jay Leno is more important that discussing the issues?!? Before now, I thought he just didn't have a lot of substance, but now I am officially insulted.)

Tuesday, September 4, 2007

Another first...

Trevor started his preschool career today. He was the first one up and came in reminding me that it was his first day of school. Just a little excited. :) He is in a class of six boys. I think that Jen will have her hands full, but will have a lot of fun. Trevor was almost as excited to be starting school as he was to take his new Batman backpack. It is good to be three!

With his new teacher, "Miss Jen."


I Stand All Amazed...

I have always loved how music helps facilitate the teaching of the spirit. On Sunday I was leading the music in church and I had one of those testimony building experiences. We were singing the hymn, I Stand All Amazed, when the force of the reality of those words hit me like a ton of bricks. I started sobbing (quite embarrassing since I was up in front of everyone) as I thought, with complete awe, how much The Savior loves me -- in spite of my many sins, shortcomings, and faults. I am a soul that is, at times, very rebellious and proud. Sometimes I want to do it my way, even if that is not the best way, or even His way. I continually make mistakes and in my pride, don't repent right away. And through it all, He continues to love me and hope that I will do better. In my brain, of course I know this, but my heart can sometimes forget. I am so grateful for music and these beautiful words I was able to sing on Sunday. They helped my heart to again focus on Jesus Christ and His atonement and the reality and truth of His love. I am truly grateful for little "a ha" moments like this to strengthen me, especially when the road is difficult.


I Stand All Amazed (hymn 193)

1. I stand all amazed at the love Jesus offers me,
Confused at the grace that so fully he proffers me.
I tremble to know that for me he was crucified,
That for me, a sinner, he suffered, he bled and died.

[Chorus]
Oh, it is wonderful that he should care for me Enough to die for me!
Oh, it is wonderful, wonderful to me!

2. I marvel that he would descend from his throne divine
To rescue a soul so rebellious and proud as mine,
That he should extend his great love unto such as I,
Sufficient to own, to redeem, and to justify.

3. I think of his hands pierced and bleeding to pay the debt!
Such mercy, such love and devotion can I forget?
No, no, I will praise and adore at the mercy seat,
Until at the glorified throne I kneel at his feet.

Text and music: Charles H. Gabriel, 1856–1932

Tuesday, August 28, 2007

Let's fall in love...


Last night was incredible! We were able to go see Diana Krall perform at Red Rocks amphitheater. I have never been there before and the setting made the concert that much more enjoyable. From our seats we had an incredible view of the stage, most of the Denver metro area, and the huge red rock formations surrounding us. As darkness fell, the lights of the city twinkled in the distance. The small hiccup with this open air theater was the rain that started about halfway through the opening act that just continued to fall harder as the concert went on. Even the performers were getting wet and had to move the instruments back further on the stage. :) It made for lots of fun song quotes during their jazz improvisations: singing in the rain, raindrops keep fallin' on my head, and stormy weather, among others. We didn't mind the weather too much huddled under our umbrella. We totally enjoyed cuddling and there was a very intimate feeling as a result. We saw the true definition of a "fair weather fan" as people kept getting getting up to leave. I thought it was making the memory of the amazing night that much more distinctive.

The opening act was trumpeter Chris Botti. He was fantastic -- such a beautiful tone! His band was rockin', especially the guitarist and the drummer. The acoustics were incredible and I loved the way the trumpet echoed off the rocks. I am thinking we need to get some of his recordings.

And what can I say about Diana?!? She has mad keyboard skills! On her CDs it is easy to focus on her singing, but live, you can't ignore her amazing piano chops. Everything about her seems absolutely effortless. She really gets to the heart of the music. I loved all of the songs she sang. I think my favorite was... okay I just loved everything! I am so glad we were able to go and see her. I had waited almost 10 years to hear her live and even sitting out in the rain, it was totally worth it!




Thursday, August 23, 2007

But on the bright side...

I LOVE red lipstick! I love how it makes my whole face come alive. So even on the worst days, I can have my wonderful 16 hour, long wearing, cherry lipstick.

I had one of those days...

I hesitate writing about this because it feels so whiny, but I also think it might be therapeutic to try and put some of these feelings into words. There are days that I think it would be so much easier to have a different job. I am pretty sure the pay would be better, I would be a little more respected by my colleagues, and I wouldn't be on call so much. Yeah, there are days the stay-at-home mom thing is not so appealing. I absolutely adore my kids (and I am pretty sure they are about the cutest on the planet) but after picking up the same toy/shoes/shirt/backpack for the millionth time my patience wears a little thin. I almost lost it the other night. Why can't something that I just cleaned stay that way for a least 10 minutes?!? I totally feel like a failure at times. How can I possibly be a good mom if I can't even keep on top of the (endless) dishes, meals, laundry, papers, and STUFF?!? And somehow fit it all in between all the other obligations -- places to go, people to see. I feel like I will never be the supermom I should be. You know the type... THEY never yell at their kids, lose their patience, have dirty dishes in the sink, etc. (Okay, I know sometimes THEY do, but this is how it seems to me.) How can I ever possibly live up? It is also hard feeling like I am taken for granted by my kids. It is a struggle trying to teach them to be responsible. In some ways it would be easier to just do it myself, but I know in my heart of hearts, that would not be doing them any favors.

To sum up, I want to do this job better, but how? Supermoms out there, I would LOVE some advice. Both the practical tips and how to deal with the emotional toll that this can take are all welcome.

And lastly to my mother, I am SO SORRY if I ever made you feel like this! This (stay-at-home) motherhood thing is certainly the most challenging job I have ever done and I totally give you props for how well you did it!

Wednesday, August 22, 2007

A first grader...

It's official. We now have a first grader in the house. Morgan is totally loving Mrs. Clemmon's class and all the new friends she is making. She is so tired at the end of the day (after going to school all day) that she actually falls asleep before midnight. :) I am so proud of her and how grown-up she is becoming.



Sunday, August 12, 2007

The best movie so far this year...

Ken and I are thrilled that Holly and Brian (Ken's sister's family) have moved to CO. Last night we got the cousins together and then the adults went on a double date. We had some fantastic Mexican food at Hacienda Colorado and then went to see The Bourne Ultimatum. The movie was incredible!! The action was super intense and the fight and car chase scenes were very well done. In fact, I think it should count as a workout because my muscles were flexed the entire time. :) Matt Damon was awesome. My one disappointment is that Jason does not get together with Nicky. I have wanted them to get together since the first film. There were, however, allusions to them having a past together. Maybe there will be some answers in the deleted scenes on the DVD.

Overall, I say two thumbs way up and the best movie I have seen so far this year!

Iowa Straw Polls results...

Mitt rocked the vote. Sounds like a party and I wish I could have been there despite the horrible heat and humidity. This is such an important election and I can't wait for my voice to be heard. Here are the results (which I copied from My Man Mitt)...

Results:
1. Mitt Romney 32%
2. Mike Huckabee 18%
3. Sam Brownback 15%
4. Tom Tancredo 14%
5. Ron Paul 9%
6. Tommy Thompson 7%

Then . . . the "also rans":
7. Fred Thompson 1%
8. Rudy Giuliani 1%
9. Duncan Hunter 1%
10. John McCain 0.7%
11. John Cox 0.5%

I am also pleased for Huckabee, who I really like. It will be interesting to see what some of the other candidates decide to do with their campaigns.

Tuesday, August 7, 2007

The Cabin...

One of the most anticipated trips of the year is when we go to our friend's cabin up in Montana. This year was no different. We all had a fantastic time! We were there for 4 1/2 days. The kids played in the creek, fished, rode horses, and played so much with all their friends that they literally fell into bed each night. It was so fun to watch the kids see the animals come up to the salt lick in the meadow. Peyton especially loved the moose! The grownups had a wonderful time as well. We talked until late every night, fished, canoed, rope swung into the river, enjoyed the beautiful view, and played guesstures (five year winning streak for the girls!). Our trip to "the cabin" is always the highlight of our year and a wonderful time to reconnect with incredible friends. Thank you Mark and Malinda for inviting us up to the cabin. We always have a fantastic time and we can't wait until next year!








In-laws visit...

This weekend had Ken's parent's visit and then his sister's family joined us for lunch on Tuesday. So very fun to be all together, even if only for a few hours.


We are absolutely thrilled that Holly and Brian are moving up to Colorado. They will now be about 17 hours closer and we are totally looking forward to it! Our kids are so excited about the prospect of playing more with their cousins. We have been waiting for this for years and now it is finally here!

Saturday, August 4, 2007

My quest...

For the first time, in a long time, I feel like I can sing. While in Las Vegas this June, I had the opportunity to take a voice lesson with Jeffrey Skousen. It was incredible. I had no idea I could sing like that! It was also thought provoking. So now I remember that I can sing -- what do I do with it? I have also thought a lot about the path that I have been on and where I want to go. Thinking about all this has been pretty emotional and overwhelming. How do I balance my personal goals with my responsibilities as a wife and mother? Still not sure on this one. But I now realize that while all my classical training has been very helpful for my love of choral music, it didn't do a whole lot for preparing me to do musical theater. I have loved that genre for as long as I can remember, but once I got into college and chose to study choral music education, I was steered toward choir and opera. At BYU the music school did not play nicely with the music theater department. So for years, I have not pursued that passion of mine. I am not talking broadway or anything, but I would love to do some community theater as the kids get older. But first I need to get more comfortable singing this new style.

When I got back to Denver, I found a voice teacher that teaches the same technique that Jeffrey teaches. I had my first lesson with MaryAnn last week and I think it was very productive. I look forward to studying with her. Right now I am working on The Wizard and I from Wicked. It is so fun! It will even be more fun when I am really comfortable singing it and can rock it. I know this will be quite the process, but I am glad that I am finally moving forward with my dream. Another benefit will be how this will add to my marketability as a singer and voice teacher. I hope this quest that I am on will also help my students. I am sure there will be ups and downs, but I am glad to be taking some action. This will be an adventure...

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

It's debatable...

Last night we tuned in for the Democratic debate. Interesting format with the youtube questions. In some ways it seemed a little more accessible and the questions were asked in an interesting way. Some questions were rather silly while some were a little more straight forward than your polished journalist question. A good idea to get people more involved in the political process.

There were some good answers, but overall I was not all that impressed. I have been wondering more about Obama (and I will probably still do more homework on the guy) but he seemed inexperienced. In fact, I realize that I am wary of any candidate that has not had executive experience. I find myself very disappointed in the "I am a very moral and religious person, but I won't inflict my personal beliefs on anyone else" kind of response. Truth is not relative. There is right and wrong and people should try to live their best accordingly. I guess that is just one of the reasons I have republican leanings. I feel like most of the GOP candidates try to stand up for what they believe in, even if the stand is not exactly popular.

Mitt Romney in '08!

Sunday, July 22, 2007

I can't believe it's over...


In some ways it feels as though I have lost a friend. No more adventures of Harry Potter. I am actually kind of sad. (I guess I will just have to wait for the last two movies.)



On Friday night our book club attended the Hallows ball at Borders. Jen made incredible Gryffindor scarves for us all to wear. We got our wristbands and went out to dinner to pass some of the time. Then back to Borders to wait and wait. I finally got my book at 1:39 am and went home to get some sleep. I woke up, put in my contacts, and got started on Book 7, Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows. Ken is so good to me -- he took care of just about everything (including bringing my meals over to me on the couch) while I read and read. And so after some tears and some cheers I finished the book at 9:26 pm roughly 12 hours after beginning.



Quite possibly, this is the best Harry Potter book yet. I have loved seeing all the characters grow and develop. The ending especially, was fantastic! When Mrs. Weasely started dueling with Bellatrix LeStrange I was practically jumping up and down on the bed. Harry's acceptance and willingness to sacrifice himself has some wonderful symbolism. The entire series was beautifully wrapped up. I can't wait to discuss the whole book (and series) at book club on Wednesday.



Thank you J. K. Rowling for sharing your brilliant story with all of us!

Saturday, July 21, 2007

My first time...

I have thought for a while now about getting a blog. I kept questioning myself and wondering what I could possibly have to add to the endless info out there on the web. I have finally found some courage and have dipped my toe into the waters, but I do so with a warning for those looking for the profound. Ken kept asking me what the theme of this blog will be. I kept responding with an "I don't know." I guess I just want to write about my life, thoughts, and (dare I say it?) my dreams for anyone that wants to check in and see what we are up to. The possibilities are endless... I can talk about my family, music, voice (and my quest in that regard), politics, scrapbooking, books, movies, well, anything at all. I must say that I am feeling somewhat giddy at the prospect.