Archive for November, 2006

the most stellar youth handbell choir out of southern minnesota (it has a ring to it, don’t you think?)

So I threw on a little Vince Guaraldi Trio today to get in the Christmas mood – that would be music from “A Charlie Brown Christmas”. You know the song “Skating”? The one that starts out going [start with a high pitched voice and go lower] “da duh da da da, da duh da da da, da duh da da da, duuum… duuumm… duummm….” Yeah, anyways, nothing gets you in the holiday festive spirit more than hearing that song. For me it calls to mind images of being younger, all bundled up in the blue snowpants, going outside in the freezing cold of winter with my orange plastic sled, and those mittens that didn’t quite cover the skin on my wrists at the end of my jacket. I will forever have little stripes of frostbite across my wrists. Not to mention it gets dark at like 2:30 in the afternoon during winter in Minnesota, so I was always racing home to go sledding in the pitch black of night… err, afternoon.

“Skating” also calls to mind other memories, namely, handbell choir in highschool. Ah yes, handbell choir. Looking back on it, it feels so odd that I was actually in a handbell choir – just the sound of it seems so… girly. For some reason it wasn’t though. Everyone who was anyone and could count to 4 was in our youth handbell choir at good ol’ Evangel UMC. Those who could only count to 3 played the bells in the bass cleff, because they only had to ring them once or twice a measure. We were pretty awesome though. We were, in fact, the most stellar youth handbell choir out of Southern Minnesota. We showed up many an adult handbell choirs in our day.

Anyways, to make what should have been a short story long, our senior year in high school we played the song “Skating” in rockin’ handbell style. It was amazing, and hilarious, and one of the oddest things to ever resonate from the tip of a hinged plastic clapper.

please leave a message

Happy Post-Thanksgiving everyone – hope it was fantabulous. I called my parents to wish them a Happy Thanksgiving this weekend and got the answering machine… believe it or not, my parents finally changed the little message that plays on the machine prior to you leaving a message! I was shocked!! Please understand, my parents have had the same voicemail message since I was in, I don’t know, 5th grade. I guess since all the kids moved out of the house it was time to move on with the voicemail as well. Tim always used to make fun of me for the message that my dad said… he’d always recite it for me.

Timmy, bonus points for you if you still remember what the Burns Residence answering machine used to say…

blogs are like dead rabbits falling from pine trees

I was sick yesterday – that was a whole lot of no fun. But I got a day off of work, and I tell you what… sleeping until 1PM and watching crappy daytime TV the rest of the afternoon wasn’t a bad tradeoff. All of that reminded me once again of how strong a proponent I am for the four day work week. I think I would gladly sacrifice a few extra hours during the week in order to justify having a three day weekend four times a month. How awesome would that be?

I got a rousing welcome into the blogging world by Uncle Tim today. Thanks Tim. Tim thinks that my blog is entirely based around making fun of him, which is an interesting concept (and one to consider), but not entirely true. However, I realized that the vast majority of my posts have been relatively sarcastic in nature, and it was always my intention to have a blog that fairly balanced a sarcastic view of life with a healthy dose of meaningful discussion.

The thing is, I haven’t been all that stimulated with any deep thought provoking life questions recently. I almost feel that since I left college I haven’t been asking many deep thought provoking life questions. I feel bad about that, because it kind of points to the direction of my spiritual life in general – it’s important to stay sharp and focused by asking those types of questions, and more often than not I’m not giving that area too much attention.

So, to change the direction of this ship and rattle some cages I’m tempted to throw something out there like “Anyone who wasn’t baptized as an infant is not truly saved”. I doubt that would go anywhere though. Of course the one time Tim asked a serious question on his blog it flopped like a dead rabbit falling from a pine tree, so maybe seriousness isn’t the direction to go on blogs.

No one has taken me up on my standing offer to talk about anything though. After all, this space is for rent and we can talk about anything for a nominal fee. And the fee isn’t all that bad… you just have to put up with Tim’s sarcastic remarks as he makes a mockery of us all. So I have an idea, you should offer me some good deep topics to dig into and then I’ll return a response supported by my heathen Methodist upbringing. It will be awesome.

oh, by the way…

I applied for a new job within my company a few weeks ago… actually, it was two months ago, literally. That is point of frustration #1, but oh well… I understand it takes time to decide these things. So I applied for the job – I felt really good about it too – figured I was a perfect candidate, and it was something I was really interested in. Figured I had a good relationship with the guy that was hiring. But in the end I didn’t get the job. I’m ok with that I guess. I was excited about the possibility of something new, but I also appreciate what I have.

But the thing that really frustrates me about all this is the way I found out that I didn’t get it. I was out of the office Thursday and Friday last week, and on Friday I start getting all of these messages from my friends in the office (who knew I had applied) saying that the “new girl” was there and was being introduced to everyone. The guy had never said anything to me… it would have been nice to know I hadn’t gotten the job and get some feedback, but I got nothing. I mean, they probably made the decision two weeks ago – that should have been plenty of time to talk to me. I figured that was standard HR protocol. And then to top it all off, I have a regularly scheduled meeting with this guy at 9:15 this morning, so I walk into the meeting and new girl is there, and he introduces us, plays it off like it’s completely normal, and that’s that – end of story.

Alright, I vented. Now I’m going to write a nice and calm note to HR and then be done with it.

all up in my grill

For our first year anniversary my parents got us a new grill – a real grill! Far different from the little camping grill we were using before that we had to haul out of the storage closet and prop up on cinder blocks while cooking – the one that burned through a little canister of propane after about 17 minutes of use. But my friend Dave gave that little thing to us for our wedding, and it served us well, so thank you Dave.

Apparently the “giving of the grill” is a family tradition. My grandparents bought my parents a grill for their 1st year anniversary. My dad had to put the thing together himself, and in my dad’s words he’s “still trying to find a way to get him back”. So that’s the predicament we have been in for the last two weeks… we’ve had grill parts strewn around the house, and we’ve been living in fear having heard horror stories from others who have attempted to assemble a grill in the past. We’ve received numerous warnings from various people encouraging us to avoid this endeavor at all costs. My mom even begged us to call the people at Sears, saying that they would probably be willing to come out and set it up for us. Goodness.

So this morning I decided to take on the challenge. I got plenty of rest last night, had eaten my Cheerios, put the Nebraska-Missouri game on – figured I was good to go. Now, where’s the instructions…?

In all seriousness the assembly went quite well. I imagine the grill companies have greatly improved their instructions on how to put grills together in recent years, following many irate customer service calls and bomb threats I’m sure. The hardest part was keeping Linus from eating the Styrofoam packaging and suffocating himself on the plastic wrapping. There were a couple moments that needed a sledgehammer, but I made Steph do that part. All I have to do now is go out and get a propane tank, which is probably where it will all fall apart for me… I’ll surely burn down the woods behind our house.

So, that’s done. There’s some pictures below of the assembly for those that care.

Oh, and Nebraska won! Sorry Melissa… kinda.

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