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Hello all!

We've moved to this address:


UPDATE YOUR READERS! (all six of you, haha)


Who's your crawdaddy?


One of the first things that I learned to love about Eric was his adventuresome relationship with food. We'd find ourselves at the grocery store and he would quite easily get distracted by something he had never tried before. If it was particularly intriguing, whatever it was, would make its way into our basket. Did we have any idea how to cook it? Probably not. Perhaps also what made it fun was finding a random foreign youtube video with really awful music and poorly translated subtitles in order to learn how to properly dice and eat a jicama root.


The other day I was grocery shopping at the local asian market. I found this:

Had to get it, right? I mean who wouldn't want to try this delectable looking ambiguous fruit? She got all dolled up in her leopard print goods, gave herself a vague but but enticing name... I couldn't help but take her home. :) Really, it was rindless chunks of what looked like watermelon only with small sesame seed sized black bugs stuck in white spider web looking flesh. It mildly tasted of melon with a slight crunch. After a little research I've now learned to call it dragonfruit or pitaya. It really looks like this:

Pitaya cross section

When grocery shopping I also like to send him texts at work like this one: "DINNER!"
You could say that we don't discriminate when it comes to food too much. (I didn't buy the pork uteris, I promise.) So when Eric asked if I wanted to attend the crawfish boil sponsored by some company that is trying to woo Eric's employer I said, "Heck, YES!" Sidenote: wooage of energy companies by other companies = completely ridiculous. With this new job I've been learning a lot about definitions, ie. "free lunch." (More on that at some possible future juncture of time) Back to the crustaceans... NEITHER of us had had crawfish before. So, this is what happened:

There is a right way and a plehhhhhhhthora of wrong ways to eat a crawfish. You'll know it's the wrong way when you've crushed the head and its barely intelligent bits are seeping down your hand. To save you from the horror of pretreating the crawdaddy brain out of your favorite shirt, I've included a great youtube video. 1-800-CRAWFISH!

Remember: Twist, twist, pinch and pull. AHHHhh, delicious.

Also, we are still here. There were tornado watches yesterday, but we survived. I don't know if our vegtable garden will if we keep getting THIS kind of rain:

Or this kind of hail:
(May 16th 2010, OKC... it really starts cooking around a minute and a half in, if you can handle all the OMGS)

So much for the cucumbers, right?


Ikea Birthday with a side of fossils

When we decided we were going to move to Oklahoma City, Eric and I were sitting in the living room at my in-laws researching whether or not all the things we know and loved may also be in OKC, which resulted in this conversation:

E: I WONDER IF IT HAS A COSTCO! Where am I going to get great prices on CHEESE?!
S: DO YOU THINK THERE'S AN IKEA!? How are we going to thriftily furnish our place with modern (stop for a Swedish meatball lunch in the cafe) clean lines?!

(Father-in-law walks in the front door from work)

Doug: Hey guys, how's it going?
Us: Good, were were just talking about places we hope are in Oklahoma City.
Doug: Oh!, I wonder if they have a temple!?


It was a good lesson for Eric and I.

ANNNNYway, for my birthday yesterday, I drove down to Dallas to visit MRS Julie Vest-Getmanenko and her baby boy Nikolai. We pounded that Ikea pavement, because alas you see, OKC does not have an Ikea. Eric and I were punished for our lack of priorities. Haha. We are now card carrying members of Sam's Club because are we ever in Walton country and I now have a three hour cinnamon roll drive. Sheesh. But you know, when you get to spend a day with these people it makes it well worth the trip.

Eric had been gone since Sunday to south Texas for a business trip, but was unexpectedly able to come back last night, so that was a welcome surprise. My geologist gave me business trip birthday fossils, as well as, silpat baking mats, really good books to read and cookbooks with lots of pictures. He kind of knows me some. It's like we are married.

Also, the kitchen is coming along. Cabinets are drying, hardware is next and then a last coat of paint on the wall. Those cabinets... never again. Two coats primer, two coats paint. And when front and back both have to dry, all you feel like is that your life is painting and waiting on cabinets. ...It's rough. Ha.


Everything is OK

Like our new family picture? Ha. If you must know, the wind DOES sweep across the plains. Pretty sure moving is worthy of a post. Eric's Nana teases him about erasing a hole through the page in her address book. Currently we are in Oklahoma City. (Much more on that later) But, in case your need a refresher, here is a quick review of the last six months... (or just skip it all together and check out our awesome 70s kitchen at the end of this post that I'm working on)

  • The economy give us the willy nillies and so does the new company Eric was working for despite great promises and high hopes. We had a job but were looking for greater security. Back to job searching.
  • Eric considers continuing education and getting a PhD. Perhaps more school = better job prospects and competitiveness? Applies to six grad schools. Meets with professors and continues to interview for jobs. Feedback: not enough positions available at this time.

  • Sarah finishes all course work for B.S. in Behavioral Science. Wahoo!
  • Eric finds job in PA mudlogging until we hear back from possible grad programs.
  • We BOTH move to Pennsylvania. No more of this Florida business.

  • Work on Blue Ridge Summit accent.
  • Sarah starts looking for a job.
  • Eric learns what it means to curse like a mudlogger by live on a drill site for a few weeks at a time. :)
  • Sarah checks the mailbox everyday for acceptance letters.

  • Sarah makes massive 80th birthday cake for Grandad Fred and finally gets an job interview.
  • Request of second interview with company in Oklahoma City. (Note: original interview was October 2010. Expansion apparently happens... wishfully ponder a recovering economy.)

February 7th:
  • 8am: Eric interviews for job.
  • 3pm: While running errands Sarah checks the mail at the PO BOX in Blue Ridge Summit. There's a letter. She wants to rip it open. Calls Eric.
  • 3:05pm Eric gets accepted to his first grad school.
  • 3:07pm Sarah does dance in Walmart parking lot.
  • 3:30pm Eric prepares to board flight back to PA. Sarah looks at list and considers what to make for dinner.
  • 3:32pm Eric gets emailed job offer to be Associate Geologist for a Fortune 100 Best Company to Work For.
  • 3:33pm Eric calls wife.
  • 3:34pm Wife cries and buys a pork roast.
  • 3:45pm Husband boards plane and calls it a day.

Remaining February/March Whirlwind:

  • More acceptance letters come.
  • Lots of discussion.
  • Sarah inadvertently eats a stink bug.
  • Explain to Simon we have decided to move to Oklahoma City.
  • Quick hurry to visit everyone we planned to have six months to see while temporarily in PA.
  • Visit Aden and Jaehee in Boston.
  • Visit Wink and Patti in Richmond.
  • Visit Barb and Bob in Charlotte.
  • Pack AGAIN.
  • Arrive in OKC.
  • Sarah presented at a research conference in CA.
  • Unpack AGAIN.
  • Eric started new job.

April looks like:
  • Sarah officially graduates! (and takes a big breath)
  • Planting our garden.
  • Lots of painting.
  • Sarah job searching.
  • Learning to be big kids.
  • Making new friends.
  • Building a storm shelter...

And there you have it.

I guess you could say things may be calming down for a while now. I certainly hope so. Perhaps I will post a few things from our adventures these past few months. In the meantime I have a lot of work to do in our new place. Eric's parents were so good to us while we lived with them back home in PA. I really couldn't ask for better or more supportive in-laws BUT I love knowing where MY spatula is in MY kitchen. And this is the first project I'm throwing myself into. Proudly aware of our food snobbery, Eric and I spend most of our time here together and it makes me miss our old kitchen. This was the before/after on the old apartment kitchen.

After painting the wall, I realized the cabinets were this weird peachy, pink cream, so I just painted them white. I like a nice white kitchen. And guess what we got here in OKC?

So, besides those fabulous 70's cabinets with the gothic iron hardware, I've got to say, check out that awesome fridge. That was a craigslist find everyone. Frankly the guy felt like giving us a deal because when we priced it later... it was about a third of the original cost. Also, by deal I mean much less than what we would have paid new for a plain definitely smaller option. And let me tell you, Eric and I are appliance EXPERTS now having moved to OK. (Renting and finding bargains = being able to pay off student loans.) Later this week after a special delivery I will post about another appliance adventure.

Lastly, yes I'm painting the cabinets AND the walls in the kitchen... any advice on colors? I'm at a bit of a loss. White dishwasher, black stove, stainless steel fridge seriously complicates things.


Liberty and Holiday Travel

Yes, this is a total procrastination strategy that I'm employing while here in the library.

Recently there has been a lot of discussion about what it takes to fly these days. I would like to add to the discussion on our blog that two people read. Haha. Why write about it then? Well, I feel like I have an opinion and I'm not very good at expressing it in the condensed form of a tweet or facebook status. So here goes...

As a student I have a really great job that is super flexible. I get paid to drive teenagers who are currently in treatment at a residential facility to local appointments: dentist, gynecologist, podiatrist, court, etc. I've held hands for cavities, pap smears and hang nails. Part of my job also includes taking our clients to the airport for when they go on home visits. I routinely drive to the airport and go through security at least once a week because my job requires I escort them to the gate. Through this lens of frequent security screenings and gate sittings, (yes, I sometimes wake up with the Big Sister alert ringing in my ears about not watching other people's bags) and while I admittedly never actually get on any flights, I feel I can personally comment here with confidence on TSA procedure and how I feel about it.

Just like discussing with a client where they would like to eat after I take them through security I also discuss with them what kind of screening they would prefer. I think people often forget to consider this before actually being confronted with the consequence of forgetting, like in the case of water still being in your water bottle.

I'll only comment here on my experience with Salt Lake City Airport because that is where almost all of my experience comes from. I'm not going to look up what TSA regulation is for the "average" airport because a)I'm too lazy and 2) my comments may not generalize to the "average" flight experience. (I'll address this last point at the end)

Going through SLCA there are signs. Along with the signs that inform you what you can take with you through security, after showing my boarding pass and ID to a TSA agent, I then have a choice which line to go through and at the beginning of the line with the body scanner there is a sign. It shows a picture of a body scan, instructs you how to stand and informs travelers those reviewing the scans cannot physically see you as you go through. I won't discuss the politics of the use of body scans here and you know, I'm not even going to share my own views about them, but I am more than willing to say that if you know how to buy a plane ticket then you are literate enough to read the signs about your options for security measures in order to travel. Be smart and realize you are fully capable of choosing your own adventure: body scan or metal detector. In my opinion, choosing the line for the body scanner, refusing to then be scanned and then saying, "No. I will not comply with a pat down," is the equivalent of saying, "I was too busy to read the sign." We read signs which regulate and prohibit our travel "rights" all the time... speed limits, traffic lights, "click it or ticket", and maybe you know that is another issue entirely, (big brother laws that cite you for not wearing a seat belt) but the point is there is a sign. Read it. If you are worked up over a fine because you were late for a flight and failed to read the sign, went in the body scanner line and then refused to have a "physical pat-down,"... go commiserate with everyone who gets speeding tickets because they were late to an appointment and were too busy to pay attention to the way they were also traveling. What about my travel rights? Do I have the right to expect you to be a responsible traveler? I guess I'm just saying that if you are going to complain about the rules, be responsible enough to read them before you break them, yeah?

While I'm at it, I'm going to take on Ben Franklin. In contrast to his more stately and wise offerings he once apparently said that those "who can give up essential liberty to obtain a little temporary safety deserve neither liberty nor safety." What a judgmental and irresponsible thing to say! Who are you Ben Franklin to tell me how to define my own view of liberty? Does it have to be the same as yours for me to deserve what you consider to be essential? According to you, my political competence not only suggests whether or not I qualify for civil liberty but also my right to personal safety. Doesn't sound very unalienable to me. Also, BF, because you are so wonderfully quotable, and people listen to you, they like to use this quote as a response to invalidate another person's view by telling them they don't deserve whatever their personal definition of liberty is because it is different than their own. See how that works? Don't worry, I'll smile back at your picture when I see it on a bank note, because a) it means I'm holding a hundred dollar bill and 2) you're American just like me and just as on this here blog you can say whatever you want and so can those other people. Doesn't mean I have to like it. Don't get me wrong, I love being American. I love being able to have whatever idiotic and ignorant opinion I wish to ascribe to. Just don't tell me when and whether or not I deserve the choice to decide what that is. I may (or may not) just go out and vote about it. And really that's what I think it should come down to, right?

Here follows a guide to traveling this season:

1) Take an Airborne and use hand sanitizer

2) Wear slip on shoes/boots

3) Wear socks under these shoes/boots... lots of sweaty feet are going to be walking where you are going to

4) You really don't need everything you packed, but I get it. Americans like to have options and I'm no exception.

5) If you are sick and traveling, that bottle of 3oz+ pepto or cough syrup you forgot you had in your bag does not have to go in the trash. TSA may tell you it does but tell them you are sick and need it. You won't get slapped with an $11,000 fine.

6) Educate yourself BEFORE you go to the airport. You said you did in order to purchase your ticket. (Online at least. When was the last time you used a travel agent?)

Here's the list of approved items:

Advanced Screening procedure overview:

7) If you are in a hurry (or just impatient) LOOK to consider your options and read the signs. Body scan or metal detector? Grandma in a wheel chair with multiple artificial joints or a family of five, (stroller and five dvd players/laptops each for the kids)? You choose your own adventure.

Hopefully you are better at choosing lines than Eric. He has the MOST amazing talent of picking the longest line at the grocery store. Sometimes I have the urge to buy something separate just to race him and win. Haha.

For the record, if you haven't noticed, I'm glad there is someone checking to make sure your aren't wearing a diaper bomb because there really isn't a generalizable flight experience:


Other nuggets for consumption:



"Don't touch my junk"

How to write to your representative:

How to find out who your representative is:


$3 Lampshade Redo

I've had a few summer projects that I have been trying to finish up while we still have good weather weekends. I found this hideous lampshade at DI. It had a 'beautiful' sequiny headband the entire way around the top. I already had some fabric so I picked up some matching grosgrain ribbon and WALLAH!

It now hangs in our kitchen over our table. I'm going to be uploading a kitchen before and after here before too long. So here's a sneak peek with the finished lampshade. It was super easy. Spray glue is a glorious thing. I cut a little two much off the bottom and had to improvise a bottom ring solution because the original no longer fit but ehh, it came out rather well despite my mistake. Otherwise this whole project would have took only half an hour.

Lampshade: $1
Ribbon: $2
Spray Glue: already owned
Fabric: already owned
Ikea fixture: already owned


August Anteloping

Dear Summer:

You are sneaky. You held such grand promise. Promise of productivity for personal projects. (Holy alliteration.) Promise of gentle warm sun. Promise of plentiful garden harvests. Promise of relaxing vacations.

The girls of 3LW can back me up here: I'm getting a little tired of your broken promises, promises.

I got through not even half of my summer projects. Utah summer sun is SWELTERING. I am sick of looking up recipes for zucchini. Family vacations make me gain weight. Some days you simply left me to a dark cool room, alone, to suck on an otter pop. Your heat drove my dog to sleep on the cool floor of the bathroom, by the toilet, where I would find him looking like an exhausted hungover teenager every morning.

You'd think that after living in Provo for four years I would learn to not be seduced by your awful winter with thoughts of your awful summer. Fall please rescue me. Please stay for more than two weeks this year before there is snow on Timp. Please help me save up my money for the boots that I really want and not spend it on silly things in the meantime. I don't care what Spring says about you, you are my favorite. Winter can have it's "cozy" cheer. Bah-humbug. That's only an euphemism for hermit yourself in your house breathing in cold virus contaminated circulated air. Summer, you make me sweat. I choose when I sweat, not you. Fall. Bring your changing leaves for me to crunch with my flip flops on evening walks when I need a sweater. THAT is cozy. Cozy crunchy. Yeah, bring that. And stay. At least for three weeks this year.



P.S. I only forgive you on evenings like this:

Or when I'm standing on a mountain and the wind is cooling me off like this:

Or when my eyes go all squinty in your brightness and all I can see is you making my husband look EXTRA special good:

oOOooo, or even both of us at the same time while standing in fabulously warm salty water that's perfect for rock skipping and has an unlimited supply of skippable rocks:

Only then, do I forgive you.