Monday, July 20, 2015

Won't that be cool?

Summer recap is still forthcoming. But this happened, and it deserves its own post:

The Slippery Slope from Jessie Jensen on Vimeo.

Joseph and Ada proving that it's a slippery slope from female ordination to children baptizing dogs.

Friday, July 10, 2015

Catching up

I just got back from the annual summer trip up to my parents’ place, but before I recap that I suppose I should get the blog caught up on the last, oh, six months or so. Major life events that happened since New Year’s (in chronological order):

1) I won my company’s region-wide silent movie contest! That’s going on my resume for sure.

2) Annie came to visit! We went to the Scottsdale Arabian Horse Show, soaked in the hot tub next to a roaring fireplace, went on my favorite hike (Pinnacle Peak), ate at all the best restaurants (Joe’s Farm Grill, LoLo’s Chicken and Waffles, Cornish Pasty, Postino, Frost Gelato x4), and even spent a day in Tucson at the Desert Museum (BKs Sonoran hot dogs happened en route, of course). We expressed an interest in the touch tank to the 80 year old docent at the gate, but he scathingly shot it down. “I’d go to the raptor show instead. I mean, unless you really wanna fondle a starfish…” (We went to the raptor show.)

3) Jon got a real job! His old job, in fact! Now that we’re both back with our old companies, it’s like Statia never even happened!

4) When Jon got re-hired, I immediately ran out and bought a piano. I’ve wanted one for ten years, and I could finally afford one, so I bought one, dammit. So far she’s gifted me hundreds of hours of joy. Best purchase of my life.

Right after signing the paperwork

Directly following delivery

Her name day. This is collage is one of my favorite things I've ever done.

5) I cut my hair. The day after the chop, I managed to style it like this. Haven’t been able to recreate it ever since!

6) Jon had a work trip to Vegas and I tagged along so I could spoil my nieces for a weekend. Annie was there, too!

7) My parents gave us a car (thanks again, parents)! They uncharacteristically bought a new Acura despite the fact that none of their other cars were very old, and we reaped the benefits.

8) I posted a few times at BCC. All of my posts are listed here. I’m especially fond of this one

Post Script: As you may have noticed, the blog has sort of gone dark. But I’m still active on Twitter and Instagram. Twitter more so than Instagram. I'm also figuring out the social media balance/overlap that feels right to me, because how annoying is it when someone posts all the exact same pictures and commentary on Instagram, Facebook, AND their blog? 

Summer vacation recap forthcoming!

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

NAMES 2014!

(If you're new to the annual Bloggity Blog names post, start here.)

USPS lost the newspaper insert this year, but I prevailed! Ready, set, go!

The typical drivel:
Gracee Blue
Braelyn Tess (I’m feeling a ditty coming on: ♫ “Look out! Here comes Braelyn Tess, the old blind widow who loves to read!” ♫)
Braelyn Kinleigh (Another Braelyn?? How? ...Why?)
Sayler Grae
(Leah) Adasynn
Kenadee Braelynn (BRAELYNN!!! I guess these inexplicably could have used their own category, but I sort of feel like that would mess up the flow of my Braelyn Tess joke.)
Ashtyn Rayne
Myah LaRae
Diesel J.R.
Taivan Kinley
Diesel Kae
Jax Kota

Oliver Danyil
Zeek (Facepalm.)

Kolbin Treece
(Mason) Kurtis

On the map:
Houston Kodi

Samuel Adam
Remington “Remi” Delila

Paisleys (and variants) and Presleys (and variants):
Addisyn Paislee
(Ava) Preslee

Jo’s ‘n J’s:
Hannah Jo
McKinley J
Karleigh Jo
Auburn J
Tenly Jo
Danielle Jo

A glitch in the matrix:
Gracie Deja Linn
Dejah Lynn

Unknown Norse gods..?:

Payette (we’ve had a Payette before!)

Say no to names with “GYN” in them:
Reagyn Sumerli

Jack Be What? JACK BE WHAAAT???
Jack B ('Nimble' is the easy joke here, but I prefer the option 2: TRIPPIN'.)

Twin disaster:
Maylee and Kayva

The "What the EFF???"s:
Kenzlee KaeLynn
Charlize Zeplynn
Madilaine TwilaLou
Tigè Rae (I believe they may have been looking for an accent aigu instead.)
Jax Kota
Axyl Boone
(Sawyer) Rayce

Absolute worst name:
Gunner J-Mack (Historically, this category results in ties and/or runners up, but this time there was no contest.)

Longest name:
Tie: Madilaine TwilaLou Johnston and Trezlynne Danielle Harrison (both are 25 letters, and both are based on the novel Push by Sapphire)

Shortest name:
Ty Becker

Most Mormon name:
Brigham Taylor

Trekkiest name:
Robert Ryker Picard (!)

Name that overlaps the most categories:
Kenzlee KaeLynn usurped Madilaine TwilaLou because, while they both have compounding made-up, misspelled, and double-capital-letter elements, Kenzlee KaeLynn has the K advantage. Ridiculous name, Level 5: ACHIEVEMENT UNLOCKED!

Worst real names:
Hagen M
Grayson Gunter (Say no to names with "gyn" in them, say no to names with "Gunt" in them.)
Augustus Cleve Bagley

NAMING DONE RIGHT: A round of applause for the best names of 2014:
Fern Lillias
Emily Faye
Caleb Wyatt
Alexander Julian

  • Many of these names overlap categories. I could have made a very large and complex Venn diagram, but I didn't.
  • Tell your friends: Cabbage-sized flower headbands are (mostly) out, infants in pearl necklaces are in.
  • At one point as I was combing through the names and sorting them into lists, I had one called "Needs categorizing." I guess you can take the girl out of Idaho, but you can't take the Idaho out of the girl.
  • I trust I don't need a Le-a and -Jello twins disclaimer again this year. You are better than that!

One last category, just for fun.

Photo that most resembles a baby in a sea of vomit:

Wednesday, April 08, 2015


It has now been nine mail days since my mom sent the baby names newspaper insert. I might be over-reacting, but I fear it's lost forever. I've had a string of bad luck with the ol' United States Postal Service O> (person saluting) the past few months so I should have expected something like this.

This is an SOS, is what it is. It's probably way too far past the publishing date, but if you by some miracle still have the insert, or if you could possibly procure it, would you pleasepleaseplease get in touch with me? There's an "email me" button over there somewhere --->

Be a hero!

Sunday, February 01, 2015

The Trip That Wouldn't Quit

On the ride up

My favorite street name in history. I finally got a picture of it!

Small rental car

I took this picture of Jon coming back from a bathroom break...

And later discovered he'd taken this picture as I was returning from one (same location. We take turns so no one steals our dog and Christmas presents).

Christa, Garrett, and Owen came up for a visit/Tony's Tacos. Ada(!) snapped this sneaky picture of me and Owen having a moment.

ZOMG baby. I made that hat.

Corinne and Kyle's rental was at the top of that frozen hill. Those are our tracks after we got the car back under control. Music and the Spoken Word did not happen that day as planned.

We napped like this. Then when we woke up no one had taken a picture, so I did it myself.

On the drive up to Maddox in Brigham City (the first of the two visits)

Jon snapped this spectacular selfie when he was out hunting. A+

Somewhere in here my mom broke her foot. It was horrible. She fell down the stairs in the dark and laid there in the freezing rain for twenty minutes calling out to us while we partied inside. She could hear us, but we couldn't hear her. Penny kept barking, Lassie-style, and we kept yelling at her to shut up (Jon: "If I have to go in there ONE MORE TIME I will KICK HER ACROSS THE ROOM"). Needless to say, I will feel like a terrible person for the rest of my life. We spent several hours in the Heber City ER that night where she was diagnosed with "a bad sprain on one side and possibly a small fracture on the other." She had to get TWO MORE opinions before it was determined that her tendon had separated from the bone, and another two to determine that she actually had TWO broken bones in there. A MONTH AFTER IT HAPPENED. WHAT THE ACTUAL %^$*

Oh my Joseph. Sweet, dear, precious Joseph.

One day I curled Annie's hair, then I looked over at her in the car and she'd put her hood up. It was so beautiful that I forced her to let me take a portrait with my iPhone when we got back to her house. Corinne saw the picture, busted out her professional camera, and took portraits of us both. This was the photo that started it all; others (better ones) are on Corinne's blog here (Annie) and here (me).

Triple nap

I made one for Dash and one for Jon. So many opportunities to say "snood" this trip!

BCC party!

Kyle, Gunner, Jon (and snood)


Chocolate fondue!

A couple of days after Christmas, Poppie caught pneumonia. He has given the family a dozen false alarms in the past, but still, I took an extra day off work than I had planned so that we could stick around in case there was any news (and spend some more time with him). I'm so grateful that we did because two days after we got home to Arizona, he passed away. It was back to Utah the following weekend for the funeral. This time we flew.

Christa picked us up at the airport (Thanks, Christa!!) and we killed time at the BYU art museum before meeting Annie and my mom at Bombay House for dinner. At the museum we went into a very orange room, sat down on some poufs, passed the baby around, and talked for an hour and a half.

This would have been a very cute picture if Jon had known to touch the screen to make it focus.



I thought this was a cute picture of my grandma's cat until I looked at the background.

Jon and I helped my dad and Sweetie clean out Poppie's closet the night before the funeral. There wasn't much in there for the less-than XXL crowd, but this vintage cashmere tweed Stetson fedora (with a feather in the side!) is juuuuuust riiiiight.

It was a beautiful service. And I didn't even screw up the closing prayer!

I hate to be that guy that takes and posts pictures of his food, but this was the best crepe ever so this is both an advertisement and a reminder to myself to go back to Savory and Sweet next time I'm in Orem.

Our flight was delayed by over 24 hours on our way back, but we finally made it home.

Other stuff that happened (between the two trips combined):
  • Maddox (twice)
  • Summerhays Fish and Chips (thrice)
  • Tony’s Tacos (only once?!??!?)
  • Scones at The Hub (thrice)
  • Dance Family Fun (twice)
  • My mom commenting that my electric toothbrush sounded like a didgeridoo, Steve disappearing down the stairs and returning 60 seconds later holding a didgeridoo.
  • My mom on a motorized scooter leaving a wake of destruction in the grocery store. I have never laughed harder in my life.
[Scene: Getting ready to stop at a gas station on the way back from Kaysville – I was driving, but I hate driving in heels]
Me: I can’t wait to stop so I can take my boot off.
My mom, forlornly: I wish I could take *my* boot off…
  • Us knowing when my mom was awake in the mornings: “I heard Velcro!”
  • Corinne pointing out that Gunner is basically Hodor.
  • Me winning rock-paper-scissors against Steve, declaring “I knew I would win; men always pick rock!” and Kyle chiming in, “It’s true! I won an office-wide tournament by that logic!”
  • Me: “…And there was nothing left but a nail and a beer bottle.” (This joke was the perfect culmination of a rowdy conversation concerning this blog post followed closely by a game of Mafia. It was one of the proudest moments of my life. I still sometimes snicker about it to myself.)
  • Me to Annie: "Hey, cool bra."
  • Me draping my arms over aloof Dash's neck and singing "Stay with Me" in Meryl Streep's voice as he tried to wander off.
  • Jon tasting my crepe and instantly exclaiming "I like it!" in Rapunzel's prince's voice.
  • Annie warning me to not throw Charlie's tennis ball over the fence; me immediately throwing it over the fence.
  • Corinne's autocorrect fail/improvement: She tried to say they were having an "emergency plunging situation" at the condo, but what she actually sent to Annie was "emergency plunging sensation."
  • Steve being asked at the 11th hour to bring a salad to a work function, him texting Annie the next day "I think no one likes my salad because it's literally all still there." :(
  • Jon and Corinne's disastrous car-hug. He dropped her off at the condo (one of four times we said goodbye to her between Christmas and New Years), they leaned in for the hug, someone went the wrong way, and they smacked heads. Corinne notified me immediately afterward via text, and ten minutes later Jon walked into Annie's house with wide eyes, shaking his head.

Friday, January 23, 2015

Dashing through the snow

I'm in the process of drafting my blog post all about Christmas, etc., but I came to this portion and decided it needed its own post, and that it needed to happen immediately.

Because Dash, that's why.

Let's take a closer look at that last one, there.

I thought it would be hard to pick my favorite, but it wasn't.

Tuesday, January 20, 2015

Projects in Review: 2014

Oh hi, blog. I haven't forgotten that I still need to write about Christmas, but first I'm posting this, the only "year in review"-type thing I plan on doing: My favorite crochet projects from 2014!! These were mostly gifts and are ordered strictly by the amount of time it took me to make each one, WHICH DOESN'T MAKE ANYONE'S MORE SPECIAL THAN ANYONE ELSE'S, it just means that some projects take longer than others.

Some of these images will seem quite large, because they are. But that's because I made all this stuff with mine own two hands, and it's my blog, plus I want my mom to be able to look at it all in detail without having to zoom in on each picture individually. So.

Non-crocheters/knitters: Ignore references to Ravelry (a knitting/crochet website). The link takes you to my project notes where you can also view the pattern, but you wouldn't be into that sort of thing, plus you'd need an account to view it all, anyway.

Starting on the lower end, timewise:

[Ravelry] I've made a pile of these bonnets for nieces et al., but this subtly variegated purple one, commissioned by my sister-in-law for her photography studio, ended up being my absolute favorite of the bunch.
[Ravelry] Penny wanted to be an ewok for Halloween, and I happily obliged. This was my first time totally inventing a pattern from scratch, and also my first attempt at surface crochet. The surface crochet result was very, very bad, but good enough for a dog. Also, this (make sure your volume is on).
[Ravelry] I DIE. I had to make this little lamb hat. Luckily Caylee bought it off me then took beautiful pictures of a beautiful child wearing it. I love it when that happens.
[Ravelry] I made two sets of this little bloomer/hat combo. The one intended for my friend Kellie got lost in the mail for three months and her baby was way too big for it all by the time it showed up. *fog horn*
[Ravelry] Penny's dog cozy. She loves it. Jon, demonstrating to Annie how to put it on: "You hold it like this....then she walks into it..." (as Penny walked into it)
[Ravelry] The blankets have begun! When I first started to crochet I thought I would NEVER make something as big as a blanket. It took me over a year to work up the courage, and then I made a half-dozen. This first one was for Kellie's baby. Luckily I sent it in a different box than the other stuff. The color was hard to photograph - a very pale lilac color and a deep violet.
[Ravelry] This one was for my sister-in-law Mackenzie. She didn't know the sex (turned out to be a baby girl). I loved this pattern so much and I couldn't believe how fast it worked up.
[Ravelry] This one (for Christa's baby Owen) proved impossible to photograph. It looks much better in person. The second picture is more representative of color (neon yellow and silvery grey).

[Ravelry] Annie commissioned me to make this for her friend. I hadn't finished my mom's Christmas present before I agreed to do this one, and only had five days to do it all. Plus, for Reasons, I really really wanted this one to turn out perfect. It came pretty close, despite the time crunch. This was my second time using this pattern, but in a totally different color scheme/stripe pattern.
[Ravelry] Big blanket (but also a small couch, so probably not as big of a blanket as it seems). This was a Christmas gift for my mother-in-law. I'm enamored of that green and purple combination.
 Looks so pretty all folded up.
[Ravelry] A blanket for baby Charlie. This was the same pattern as the pink and grey blanket, but since the colorwork was so much more intricate (and since I've gotten faster at crochet in general), this one took twice as long. Thanks, Kels, for sending me such beautiful photos!


[Ravelry] A little disappointing that my favorite and most time-consuming project to date doesn't have any good pictures (or even any pictures of the entire thing), but oh well. This was my mom's Christmas present, and I'm utterly obsessed with it. No lie, there were a couple of times while I was making it that I would stop, admire my work, and tear up because it was so beautiful and I just couldn't wait to give it to her (we both cried when I finally did. I think Annie might have cried, too).

Penny was feeling a little neglected with all the crochet I was doing toward the end of the year.