i heart music.

have i mentioned that i can't live without music? that it is my life line? i am obsessed with music and i literally love all kinds of music. why, you ask? well, let me tell you.

some of my earliest memories of growing up involve hanging out with my dad, going for a drive and listening to the kingston trio. whenever i hear their music, i am taken back. and it was such a happy time, i can't help but feel happy when i hear the music, besides the fact that it makes me automatically and instantly think of my dad, who i absolutely adore--obviously. and my dad does play the guitar and he plays this music...so obviously i like it.

then, i remember when my older sister was in high school, one time she had her friend over and they were listening to "45's" on the record player and one of the songs was chantilly lace.

they were doing this skit in the kitchen or something...i mean, i may have all of the details completely wrong, but i know that this song and that night go together. and i love my older sister and i loved her friends (i thought they were so cool and "mature"), and so when i hear this song i am taken back and i am reminded of my sister and again, those happy times. (and don't get me started on her obsession with duran duran...i mean, buttons and all--besides the fact that every 80's song ever written reminds me of her, her friends and my brother.)

and then i remember a van halen album that my brother had and i was so shocked by the cover art.

i remember just staring at it for long periods of time, trying to figure out why they would have a smoking angel. but i loved the music, especially this song.

and i love my brother and, i'm not gonna lie, i may have idolized him a little...so of course i loved the music he listened to, too. and then there is that whole happy times thing, as well.

so, my point...well, my point is that because of the music that i was exposed to at a very young age, i have grown to appreciate all kinds of music. and through music, i have awesome childhood memories. and teenage memories and adulthood memories. you know they say that music triggers memories and i can't agree more.

so, why this post? well, i was "browsing" youtube and happened across this incredible cover of my favorite song, hands down, no questions asked.

in the fall of my twenty-fourth year, i up and moved to boston for two years. it was one of my most favorite life experiences and i cherish the time that i spent in that amazing city. i am so grateful for the friends that i made while i was there and all the memories that i have...vivid memories that are triggered by this song.

for the first little while that i was in boston, i was a bit homesick and music was how i soothed my little homesick soul. i would play my james taylor cd non-stop (just ask the roommates). i loved listening to my baby james because the music reminded me of "home" and helped me to not be sad.

well, when i moved back to utah in the fall--two years later--i listened to my baby james so i wouldn't be homesick for boston. because i had played my james so much during that first fall and so much during the fall that i moved home, to this day, every single time that i hear a james taylor song, i am immediately back at 158 kelton street. i'm am reminded of those unbelievably amazing and indescribably beautiful new england falls--if you have never experienced it, words cannot describe it. i attribute the fact that i love fall so much to the memories i made in boston and to the music that reminds me of it.

to me, the power of music is incredible and amazing and i really can't even express in words how i feel about music. but know this...i love music. and i love my baby james. and i love this song.



the challenge: what are you doing to stay cool this summer?

admittedly, this is not so much a "self-portrait" post, but more a post about my surroundings--which is like a self portrait, right? that's what i thought.

so, what am i doing to stay cool? first and foremost, i am avoiding the out of doors. have you been out there? it's an oven, seriously. but in the off chance that i do have to go outside...i am grateful for this...

yes, my air conditioning unit.

at least i know when i return to the indoors, cool air will be awaiting me. my air conditioner is my hero during these sweltering months of summer. especially these gross and disgusting sweltering days.

and for those days, or particular times during the day, when the heat is too much for the air conditioner to handle (because we like to stay on budget), there is this little gem...

my cyclone fan.

this is the best fan. it pivots, so you can aim it up and down. it is a beautiful thing. so, when it is just a little warm in my room, i aim that right at my bed and i am in heaven.

now sure, i could hit up the sprinkler in the backyard, but the chances of that happening are slim to none.

and so sometimes, we just have to pray for the rain clouds to come...to give us a break.



the challenge: embrace your geekness.

well, i know i am a geek.
how do i know, you ask?

  • have you seen my blog?
  • my myspace?
  • did you know that i can decipher/write html codes?
  • did you know that i even know what html code is?
  • did you know that i like to read books about html code?
  • did you know that i am completely obsessed with my camera?
  • and my cellphone?
  • and my computer?

and i believe that all of these things make me a true life geek.
and i'm okay with it.
i am even proud of it.
i do embrace my geekness.
i love it.

that's all.


family vacation: part one.

i can't even decide where to begin or what to tell you about my vacation. i loved every last minute of it, which is the most important thing. i love spending time with my family so much and we sure did do a lot of that.

every year we go to park city and stay in my parents' timeshare at the marriott mountainside resort. it is at the base of park city mountain where the alpine slide and alpine coaster are and there is a little kiddie ride park. there is a pool and a plethora of hot tubs, too. and there is a snow cone shack right at the bottom of the stairs...hahaha. it is probably the most perfect place to stay--i mean, considering.

i haven't been able to spend the entire week there, but this year i got in four days. i was warmly greeted by my four year old niece sprinting down the hall, yelling, "aunt chelle, aunt chelle." it was the perfect start to the vacation.

when i walked through the door this is what was waiting.

it was adam's seventh birthday, so we celebrated with him.
interesting fact: adam was a month old when we stayed at the condo for the first time.

the kiddies went to sleep and the poker chips came out. my brother-in-laws, brennan and dave, my mom and i played a rousing game of texas hold 'em. i won, of course.

okay, i lie. i didn't win. this is how it ended...i went all in, hoping that brennan was bluffing. he was not.

i got to sleep on the ever-so-comfortable fold out bed.
(obviously, it's not folded out.)

and when i woke up, i was greeted by this.

and this.

who immediately started doing this.

i missed this one the night before (he was in bed), so i had to play with him first thing.

then we busted out the wii for the kiddies to play.
(a side note--that little kaylie plays some mean wii.)

then it was pool time. i don't have many pictures of us in the pool, but here is a picture of the view from the pool chairs and one of my little fish, malcolm (although you can't tell that from this picture).

the next day went almost exactly the same except for this...the alpine slide.

brennan and kaylie...

...and adam and i...

...decided to enjoy the scenery...

...and the rush of the slide.

now, there is plenty more where that all came from, but we will break there. but not to worry, i will follow with part two soon. just enjoy that for now. all good times, good times for sure.


spt. playing catch-up.

the challenge: in the insanity of summer, where do you spend your stolen moments?

well, i have to admit that my summers aren't really all that insane. being a 30-year-old single woman, i don't have to seek to hard to find those "stolen moments." infact, all of my moments are my own. granted, i have my job to go to and my life to live and my friends to hang out with and family to spend time with, but "stolen moments" aren't all that hard to find.

but, when i do need to "get away," i find myself in my car. i love to drive. i love to listen to music, roll down the windows and drive. i have, on several occassions, found myself hours from home.

now, it has been awhile since i have just taken off on a long drive, but even just driving to my sister's house in salt lake or to the family vacation in park city is enough. i love the time i have to just think and to relax.

so, my stolen moments are along the open highway.

a small confession.

as much as this pains me to admit, i'm going to admit it anyway...

i have a new favorite tv show. and it is embarrassing. but i love it.

it is...age of love.

i tried really, really hard not to watch this show, but dumb nbc decided to allow viewers to watch it online. and you know me and online tv watching. dumb nbc and dumb work.

anyway, this show is hilarious!!! i laugh so hard during every episode. for several reasons, but really i laugh because it is a bunch of 40-year-olds and 20-year-olds competing for the love of one stupid 30-year-old (who, in the beginning, i didn't think was very attractive...but now i think he is attractive and he grows more attractive as the show goes on...weird).

anyway, who is the genius that came up with this? because, literally, they are a genius. the hours of social commentary because of this show are endless.

but even better than social commentary is the petty drama. one of the 20-year-olds cries on every episode. over stupid crap. and there is a woman that could literally be his mother. and the 20-year-olds always say that the 40-year-olds are insecure...but i tend to believe that 20-year-old girls who insist that 40-year-old women are insecure are insecure themselves...but in every episode the 40-year-olds are supposedly getting more and more insecure. and on the most recent episode, he kissed every woman. and one of the women pointed out that he had glitter on his face. but he continued to kiss them all. love it. he is a bigger slut than the bachelor.

oh. i. love. it.

but don't tell anyone i watch this. like i said, it is a little embarrassing.

that's all.



today i am in park city and i don't have the cable to get pictures off of my camera. so, i will have to officially post my spt for this week when i get home from my vay-cay.

in the meantime, i will continue to bask in the sunlight of my vacation...and enjoy stolen moments poolside at the base of the beautiful mountains!

don't be jealous.


it's that time again.

oh friends. it is that time again. the infamous park city vacation is upon us. and i can't wait.

i love spending time with the fam. hanging out with the kiddies. acting like i'm twelve...instead of fifteen. hahaha.

isn't it funny how when you get together with your siblings you revert back to childhood? but i love it all the same.

everyone one but my brother, sister-in-law, cute carson and adorable ethan will be there. maybe next year.

so for the next few days, i will be residing poolside, hanging out with the fam and having the greatest time ever. oh man. i can't wait! and believe me...there will be plenty of photos to blog with.

catch ya on the flipside.


he really will be my friend...one day.

little malcolm is a ham.
he loves to cheese it up for the camera.
but if i try to touch him or hold him, he's just not down with that.

on two documented occassions this week, he allowed me to be his friend, but only for a brief moments.

occassion number one:
dad was helping jesse in the potty.
mom was upstairs.
and he was beside himself.
enter flashlight--i taught him how to turn it on and off and we were friends...until he got bored.
but it was good while it lasted.

occassion number two:
i like slurpees.
infact, i heart them.
so, it was only fitting that on this fine american holiday, we celebrated with an american treat.
and little malcolm sure does love slurpees, too.
and this is how he briefly became my best friend...until he started drooling down my straw.
but it was good while it lasted.

but maybe he doesn't want to be my friend right now because i like to take pictures of him during his trying and traumatic times. (i recently broke my tailbone--i know, i know--and this is my donut. he put it on and couldn't get it off.)

but then i laugh with him when he does things he isn't supposed to do and i don't make him stop like his mom does.

oh, one day...one day he will be my friend. and we will look back on these times as just a trial of our friendship.


spt. (thursday, that is.)

this week's challenge is obvious: how will you celebrate independence day? what does it mean to you?

first, i must say that the fourth of july is my second favorite holiday, right behind thanksgiving. both of these holidays have very special meaning to me.

i can't even begin to tell you what independence day means to me. it means that i have freedom to do everything and anything that i want. it means that i am able to believe what i want to believe and that i am able to share my views with others. i can vote. i have a say in how things are done in this country. i am able worship as i wish. i can travel freely in my own country and enjoy the diversity of this land. i can enjoy luxuries that some do not enjoy. i can blog. i can share my views and thoughts and ideas and life with others and not live in fear of being persecuted for it.

most importantly, independence day means that there were people who cared enough for their own freedom and for the freedom of their posterity, that they laid down their lives for me. i have a profound respect and admiration for the founding fathers of this country. i feel the same towards them as i do for leaders of my church. their courage and tenaciousness are unmatched. i will forever be indebted to them and will always feel a deep respect for them.

independence day also means that there are men and women who have cared or now care enough about what the founding fathers did that they have given of themselves in ways that i would not be able to. the men and women of the armed forces are amazing examples of courage and i will never be able to express how grateful i am for all of those who serve and for the families that support them. my father served in vietnam and my grandfather served in world war ii. i will always be thankful to them both for their examples to me.

and of course, independence day means that we can get together as families and friends and celebrate all that we are blessed with. the fourth of july has always been a family holiday for me. growing up, we always had my mom's dad's family reunion over the fourth of july. i loved these family reunions. granted, i haven't been to that reunion in quite sometime, but those reunions instilled in me a great desire to spend this holiday with my family.

now, i am going to be honest, this year i was a little worried about where i was going to go and who i was going to celebrate with, but my cutest older sister and her family came to my rescue.

in logan, the firework show is always on the third of july. i had totally forgotten that the third of july is the anniversary of kristen and dave's first date. dave (he was better known as bubba back then) came to our house for a bbq and then they all walked down the street to watch the fireworks. isn't that cute? i know.

so to keep with tradition and to celebrate the "anniversary," my sister and her family came up from riverton to watch the fireworks. we had dinner (just sandwiches--no bbq--we missed you, mom and dad) before and then we just walked down the street and copped-a-squat on the grass with a perfect view of the stadium (where the firework show is held).
back in the day, we could see the fireworks from our backyard, but they had to go and build buildings and stuff. now we have to walk a block.

we got there a little before the start of the show, but the kids were good to keep us entertained.

the fireworks aren't really a disappointment, but i have seen better. just a little glimpse.

and malcolm sure liked them (he's not yawning, he's cheering).

jesse liked them, too.

and so did i.

after the show, we walked back to the house. kris and her family got ready and drove back home and i followed (well, awhile later, that is).

then on the fourth of july:

we hung out.

we slept.

we ate.

(i know he might look like he is mean in this picture, but oh, he is not...he was just trying to enjoy his steak in peace, but i had to take pictures.)

we drank slurpees.

that was about it. it was just good to spend time together.
and again, i heart the fourth of july and i heart my family.
that's all.