Saturday, August 29, 2009


This is it. The Rexburg Opinion Center is killing my soul. I survived it for the entire summer, and although there were days when I would rather not be there, for the most part, it was no big deal. But the honeymoon is over.

This whole week, the Opinion Center has been overscheduled, so Monday, Tuesday, and Thursday I showed up for work and then gloriously got sent home. After a month of NOT having to work, working yesterday and today has made me somewhat miserable.

And it's not like I'm totally busy and having to work is stressing me out. I'd just rather be picnic-ing or decorating or movie-watching or walking or reading or Jacob-ing. And I don't even need the money. I won't get paid until school starts again anyway, at which point, Uncle Sam will be providing.

Oh gosh. The more I think about it, the more I simply can't stand the thought of working here for one more moment. I could just ske-daddle. But you never know when you'll need a job again, and you should always leave a job able to go back if you need to. And I only have 4 more shifts, and if next week is anything like the last, I might not even have to work them.

I think this would be a little more bearable if I wasn't on a DUMB survey. I think it's poorly written and the wording confuses people.

Hmph. I'll have to do a cheerful blog later to make up for this grumpy one. But in the meantime, I hate the Rexburg Opinion Center.

Friday, August 28, 2009

Current kicks

Things I'm obsessed with lately, in no particular order:

1. The couch on my porch.

2. Raspberry sorbet.

3. Picnics.

4. Jacob.

5. Pearl Jam's album "Vitalogy."

6. My new computer.

7. Moving my stuff upstairs and unpacking and decorating.

8. Going to Walmart. (This one's actually sort of non-intentional...I just keep going there. Like, every day.)

9. Dance.

10. Good movies.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Sleepy, late-night thoughts

I don't know why I'm still up...I can barely keep my eyes open. I've been on facebook for about half an hour doing almost NOTHING, aside from regaining the power of my legs. (The cause of which shall remain nameless for now, but you know who you are.) But I've been thinking about gratitude and life and stuff, and thought I'd share.

It's funny how life is so ridiculously unexpected sometimes. How the universe rearranges itself so that things happen in such a way that's so coincidental that heaven had to a have a hand in it. (I think I might have talked in a circle in that last sentence. I'll let you decide.) I've just been thinking about that lately...just when you think you've got everything figured out and know what to expect, some crazy thing happens that starts the process over again. But I'm not looking a gift horse in the mouth. I'm still trying to assimilate the presence of any horses at all.

There's a lot to be worried about in life. On a regular basis. But there's a lot to be grateful for, too. I've been overwhelmed by the latter during the past few weeks. I'm sometimes unsure as to what I did to deserve all the blessings in my life: my incredible family and the wonderful people around me now in Rexburg, along with the imminent return of more loved ones; money for groceries and bills; lovely summer days and nights; the scriptures; the Beatles; a Walmart nearby; Netflix instant viewing; cd players; the dishes (nearly) done; yellow flowers in a vase on the kitchen table.

There are so many things to be grateful for. This is ridiculous. And wonderful.

Tuesday, August 18, 2009

I'll be 24 in a matter of weeks.


1. To figure out my life. I wrote a journal entry back in February that just said "I have no idea what's going on in my life." And that theme seems to have carried on throughout the rest of the year so far. Oh well. Come what may and love it. I guess if things made sense right away, they wouldn't be as interesting.

2. A little bit of California. Like maybe a day or two of it.

3. Movies to add to my meager collection. Specifically a handful of Bollywood flicks that I'd love to own. Like "Om Shanti Om." And "Kabhi Khushie Kabhie Gham." And "Dilwale Dulhania Le Jayenge."

3. A vacuum. Well, hm. Actually. I really want a good, working vacuum. But I also am not sure I want to have to move with it every few months while I'm in college. My books make moving a big enough hassle as it is. Maybe not a vacuum.

4. For Annie to come back to Rexburg.

5. A motorcycle helmet.

6. A handful of albums...some obscure, some not. Like the soundtrack to the Japanese foreign film "Shall We Dance" and the Band From TV's album "Hoggin' All the Covers."

7. A program that will move my iPod songs onto my soon-to-be-obtained new computer, without any risk of them being lost.

8. For my apartment's kitchen to grow a dishwasher.

9. For Jenny Mae to magically live with Annie and I in the fall.

10. A VCR/DVD player.

Closing thoughts on Transience

A few more memories that demand sharing:

1. Hanging out in Seagull Book with Beckah, and creating a ridiculous story by taking turns reading passages from different Anita Stansfield books. The funny thing was that the story we created was no less ridiculous than any of the stories she writes on her own.

2. Watching "Star Trek Original Series" episodes with Mom, Ray, and Beckah over dinner.

3. Running through the sprinklers to get to Beckah's apartment. Which sounds like a free-spirited kind of thing to do, but it was more that it was impossible to walk on the sidewalk without getting soaked. So we ran. And dodged puddles. And just when we thought it was safe, MORE sprinklers came on.

4. Running into my sister Melissa at the Salt Lake Airport on my way back to Idaho. It was INSANE! What are the odds? She was flying to Houston and then on to Honduras, and just so happened to be waiting at the gate that I passed as I walked toward the bag claim on my way to catch the shuttle. I heard someone say "Liz Whittaker?!" and thinking that I was in the Salt Lake Airport and not surprised to see someone I knew, I turned and was shocked to find that it was my own flesh and blood! It was so crazy.

And, in conclusion, the moment you've all been waiting for.


Here are some of the gems from this trip:

"I can't quite get the ice down my pants." --Dad

Candice: "I love their pantry!"
Liz: "I know!"
Candice: "It's like a store."
Liz: "With labels!"

Liz: "Wasatch Academy is cool! It's like this...Boston...New"
Beckah: (disappointedly) "I was hoping it would be more like Hogwarts."

(with exasperation) "First they lick me, then they bite me!" --Kevin

"How can you eat pickles at eleven o'clock at night!?" --Beckah

"Oh no! It makes perfect sense! Get me a white-board and we'll debate this right now!" --Thierry

Melissa: "We just stashed the crucifix, because we felt bad."
Beckah: "You should have made a kite!"
Liz: "A Jesus-kite."
Jeff: "It would have flown straight and true."

"What if we went swimming in caffeine? That would solve the nap problem." --Tyler

Liz: (dancing in celebration of bowling well)
Melissa: (patting Liz's arm sweetly) "You need to get married."

"How long can you hold your water?" --Natalie

"I wanna be a little kid again. Growing up SUCKS! Did you know that the body begins decaying at age 27? Our lives are almost OVER!" --Thierry

Liz: "Where'd you get that ice cream?"
Beckah: "From the fridge in the panty."

"I got a second wind, but I really want a salad!" --Isha

"Cover me with as many inches of your body as you want to." --Beckah

Isha: "I thought you said the hotel was by the temple!"
Dad: "What? No, it's by the mall."
Isha: "Same thing."

"I only fasted for one meal today. I half-fasted." --Liz

Liz: "It's John Colton!"
Isha: "Or John Coltrane! I think it'd be much cooler if there was a jazz artist involved."

"We have tuberculosis pasta." --Beckah

"That's like The Host! I love The Host! Have you read The Host? You should read The Host!" --Isha

Beckah: (dancing across the living room with a fedora) "That's my dance."
Mom: "She came out of MY womb."

"Kid's pizza! You can pretend you're ten! Or Autistic. Maybe they'll give you pizza if you're Autistic." --Isha

"What's that smell? It smells like when you first open a bag of pool toys." --Beckah

"What is it about cheese that's so celestial? When I become a God, cheese is going to play an integral part in my universe." --Jeff Gonzales

"Das ist mein birthmark!" --Beckah

Mom: "That's my personal idea of hell."
Beckah: "What--keeping commemorative glasses from weddings?"

"I was looking at vultures today and thinking 'Wow, those guys eat carrion' and I wondered, is there such a thing as bad carrion?" --Ray

"Oops, I was crooked. Davy Crooked." --Opa

Friday, August 14, 2009

Some of the best things about the transient month of August

1. Driving from Boise to Rexburg with Isha and Beckah.
2. The water park and carousel with sisters.
3. The HUGE thunderstorm that hit Rexburg that night and dancing and running around in the torrents of rain, with lightning and thunder overhead.
4. Milkshakes (sort of experimental milkshakes) afterwards and great conversations with Isha, Beckah, and Jacob.
5. Setting up a camping tent in the rain with Isha and Beckah. What a ridiculous feat that was. And the second the tent was up, the rain stopped.
6. Seeing the shows at the 'Mill.
7. Playing "Go Fish" with Isha's Romantic and Classical composer cards. Instead of saying the name of the card, you had to say "Do you have any ___" and hum a few bars of one of the compositions of the composer on the card. And if you didn't have it, you would say "Compose" instead of "Go Fish."
8. An 80's dance party in Canyon Street Grill at midnight, with Playmill kids and the general waitstaff of West Yellowstone. Including the guy who was our waiter at Pete's earlier in the day. Oh, and the game of "Have You Ever" that we played before dancing.
9. Fun times in the Playmill mansion.
10. The Mountain Man Rendezvous. (Which is also sort of a hippie commune too.)
- Walking into a barrel of hatchets and cutting my knee open.
- The most amazing scones in the history of the world. We ate a lot of them.
11. Arriving in California so tired that I couldn't tell left from right or what day it was or if I was hungry or not.
12. Spending 10 minutes in a paddle-boat with Oma and Beckah trying to come up with a specific working definition of the word "patronizing" that we all agree on. (Actually, the paddle-boat trip with Oma and Opa in general was pretty great.)
13. Seeing 3 movies with Beckah for free.
14. The traditional insane game of Uno at a Wolff family gathering.
15. Spending 45 minutes looking through all the fabric in three fabric stores to find a formal material in the perfect shade of "peacock blue" for Mindy's possible bridesmaid's dresses, nearly giving up, and then finding it: A roll of peacock blue taffetta, in the farthest back corner of the last store we looked in.
16. Sitting in the Lindsay's barn house living room, listening to them sing together.
17. The Haight-Ashbury with Beckah.
- Our favorite crepes place
- Sleeping(ish) in Golden Gate park, amongst children and hippies and people playing the drums.
- Making fun of old record covers in Amoeba music
- Doing otherwise absolutely nothing, which was wonderful
18. Talking with the Lindsay girls. And one Pachigalla girl. =)
19. Bohnanza with Becca, Heidi, Phil and Alex on the front porch on Phil's birthday.
20. Great phone (and/or text) conversations with Jacob.
21. My right knee being utterly destroyed, at least on a surface level.
22. Being insanely absent-minded. Apparently, since I'm not in school right now and don't HAVE to use my brain as much, something in me decided that I didn't have to use my brain AT ALL.
23. Riding BART.
24. Hearing the familiar and endearing Bay Area term "hella" all the time again. Well, overhearing, more like.
25. Not showering. From Wednesday until Saturday.

Tuesday, August 4, 2009

Some of the best things about a Gardener Family Reunion

1. Mary with no sleep. In the 15 years she's been married to my dad, I've never seen anything like it. She was standing up and singing "YMCA" during a game of "Apples to Apples."
2. "Apples to Apples" with family. And "Battle of the Sexes."
3. Holding tiny newborn babies. Well, just one.
4. Aunt Stacey's laugh.
5. Playing telephone around the table at The Cheesecake Factory.
6. Swimming at the river in Boise. (Beckah = Lewis, Liz = Clark, Isha = Sacagewea, the innertube = our canoe. We went exploring. We sang pirate songs and Isha kept getting the hiccups.)
7. Our baby poop brown rental car. It was more sort of...golden? But ugly. It was a really ugly car.
8. Our soda pop bottle orchestra at the lake. Having a group of nerdy music folks + half-drunk Henry Winehards = "Wait, drink a little more! Is that the third? No, that's the fourth. Wait, add yours, let's make it minor. I have the fifth, who has the third? Okay, flat that one..."
9. Walking around Boise with Beckah one morning, which was roasting hot, so we went into Toys R' Us and bought ice cream. And a Star Wars game for Beckah's PSP.
10. Driving around with Isha in her car. Such freedom is born of being "adults."